Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Stila Spring Summer 2016

Stila are re-branding their whole line, gone are the recycled paper boxes and in their place the brand is a heaven for the golden goddess.  Each collection Stila concentrate on a different part of the face or type of product and for spring Stila are concentrating on complexion.

First up we have the Correct & Perfect All In One Color Correcting Palette* which as the name suggests is a colour correcting face palette with 5 cream correcting colors and 2 powders to set makeup.

The packaging is very pretty with a delicate coloured marbled  design.   We have all had a palette with cream and powder products and we have all decided they don't work together, either the cream drys out or the powder gets all over the cream making it redundant.  Stila have designed a clever clear cover to protect the cream products from any powder, its neat and easy to use and quite frankly I don't know how somebody didn't think of it earlier.   

Cream Correctors
  • Peach – neutralises dark under-eye circles on fair/medium skin tones
  • Pink – brightens eye area and masks fatigue
  • Yellow – neutralises hyper-pigmentation and dark spots
  • Green – counteracts redness (i.e. from rosacea, acne, broken capillaries, and sunburn)
  • Orange – counteracts dark under-eye circles on darker skin tones; also neutralises veins 
Pressed Setting Powders
  • Yellow – sets any correcting cream or can be used all over to even out skin tone
  • Lavender – sets pink correcting cream or can be used all over to brighten sallow/yellow skin

Quite honestly I wasn't very excited about a colour correcting palette, I am not generally very excited about the idea of another beauty step (most days I don't have the time for the basics let alone extra steps like serums and now a colour corrector) but I was willing to give it a try.  I have mostly been using the Peach shade under my eyes and the green shade around my nose and on my chin.  As I get older I am developing more and more redness on my face (the curse of the Celts.... and a spotty chin) and I gave my best effort at doing the artist strokes we see so much of on Instagram.  With a hugely cynical head I went about blending,  I had applied so much green I looked like I was about to audition for Wicked and since I have a One and a bit year old baby I think the only real way to cover my dark circles is to wear sunglasses CONSTANTLY and pretend Im really mysterious.   I thought while I was blending out my green face I would have a lot of time to think about life, science and the true parentage of Jon Snow but I was shocked (and a little disappointed because I didn't get to think at all).  The colours blended like a dream and in a flash and I was left with skin that was like a blank canvas.  

On the left you can see my cynical pre blend face and on the right you can see not a spot of red remains.  

I love that the Color Correcting palette gives your skin a fresh and even base, I love a light glowy complection but because of the redness on my chin and around my nose I need a heavier base (I am still not a fan of heavy foundation).  This allows me to use a light base (even a BB Cream) and the redness is gone.  The long lasting formula means that even if some foundation wears off the redness is still covered.  My red chin makes the longest wearings foundations quiver in their boots and none of them last til the end of the day but the Color Correcting Palette perfects everything and of course I have the setting powders to ensure my base lasts all day.  You don't see redness in the skin or imperfections but you also don't see heavy makeup.  I like to think it gives me mannequin face.  Since I have been using this I have been told my skin looks great and I look radiant.  My skin hasn't changed but this palette is my secret weapon.

I hold my hands up, am surprised at how much I love the Color Correcting Palette.  I cant be without it I use it religiously every day and am so happy with it I have a back up ordered.   My only comment on the palette is I wish the green section was bigger but that's a personal wish cause I have so much redness on my face.  

 Of course you cant have perfected skin without having a perfect foundation so let me introduce Stila Aqua Glow Serum Foundation and as the name suggests its a Serum foundation.  Stila excel with their foundations, they just cant make a bad one and the Aqua Glow Foundation is quickly becoming one of my favourites.  The Aqua Glow is a lightweight foundation that packs a punch, half a drop from the pipette covers your entire face.  Its lightweight feel is amazing on the skin and jam packed with pigments which gives you beautiful coverage.  Aqua Glow gives a medium coverage which you can build (I used to have to build it around my nose and on my chin before the Color Correcting palette came into my life).  Aqua Glow foundation as the name suggests leaves the skin looking radiant and glowing and that is exactly the kind of foundation I love.  I want my foundation to make me look like I have radiant glowing skin (like a Victoria Secret model but ..eeh chubby).   Like most serum foundations they look amazing on normal and oily skin but can be patchy on dry skin, I have tried samples from a lot of other serum based foundations and none of them suited my skin but the Aqua Glow works really well with my skin (which for the most part is normal/oily).  If you have dry skin Aqua Glow might not be the foundation for you but the good news is Stila have plenty of other amazing foundations to choose from.  I would always recommend asking for a sample of a foundation before forking out your money on an expensive product that might not work for your skin (cause foundations are hella expensive these days).  

To compliment the foundation Stila have also launched the Aqua Glow Serum Concealer which is a pigmented light weight concealer which I have been loving under my eyes, its formula means it doesn't go into my "laughter lines".  The packaging isn't my favourite, it makes you feel like its an empty tube where in fact there is 9g of product (there is 5g in the Urban Decay Naked Concealer) it works well I can easily forgive.  

So we have the skin perfected and looking pretty amazing (something Stila are particularly amazing at) and now we need some colour on the face.  To quote The Devil Wears Prada "Flowers for Spring.. Groundbreaking" so why don't we go with a bold vampy lip?  

On the left we have the raspberry Bacca* and on the right Ricco* 

I love Bacca but admit Ricco is a bit out there for me, I am much more comfortable in a bright and happy pink but I still love the look of clean perfected skin, simple eyes and WOW lips.

To round up the collection Stila have launched 2 Convertible Cheek Palettes I love convertible colors they are possibly my favourite Stila product and I ALWAYS have one in my purse (if you meet me you can check).  Although you can apply them on your cheeks and lips I almost exclusively use them on my cheeks (If I do use them on my lips I just blot colour onto my lips with my ring finger for a simple easy look).  
When we were at the launch of the new Stila counter in Harvey Nichols Dublin (Oh how I would LOVE Stila mirrors in my room) myself and Karen from Lovely Girlie Bits got up to our usual messing and I decided it would be a wonderful idea to recreate the imagery for the Spring Collection except with a slightly more demented and deranged face.   That radiant glowing skin... that would be the Aqua Glow Foundation, crazed expression ALL MINE. 

My picks for Stila Spring 2016 is (surprisingly) the Color Correcting Palette and the Aqua Glow Foundation (of course if Serum foundations don't suit your skin Stay All Day Foundation is kinda amazing too).  
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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Game Changing Tans

Cocoa Brown threw down the gauntlet when they created the One Hour Tan and some other brands have been really stepping up to the plate to create game changing tan.

Hands down my favourite tan is Vita Liberata pHenomenal Tanning Mousse*  its a crazy clever tan which is brilliant for really busy (and lazy) people (I'm both).  The pHenomenal tan is very easy to apply and I have never gotten a streak or tan sleeves (you know those bits where a person has orange cuffs from badly applied tan).  Its pack jammed with clever ingredients that not only mean it doesn't smell (I was very conscious of tan smell especially with the baby and it has a it has the faintest tan smell which is barely detectable), make the tan last up to 3 weeks and fades so naturally you forget you are wearing tan.  Last summer I was so confused how I had such a good tan but hand not been outside (Irish Summer + New Baby do not equal J Lo glow), I then remembered I had applied pHenomenal tan 2 and a half weeks before.  The tan is such a natural and flattering colour.  

Vita Liberata is a premium brand so pHenomenal tan is a little pricey €46.50 but it really is the best tan on the market.  If I was going to a wedding or on holidays Vita Liberata is the tan I would depend on and Im not the only one Vita Liberata is stocked in Sephora and we all know Sephora stock the best beauty products, what an amazing achievement for an Irish brand.  Vita Liberata only seem to create very clever products (like their bronzing crystals which are also a false tanner and the intriguing Body Blur).  

pHenonemal tan is long lasting (if you apply 3 times it will last for over 3 weeks), natural shade which fades evenly (I have never had to scrub or remove the tan it fades nicer than a natural tan) and in my opinion the best tan on the market and better than a real tan.

Vita Liberata is stocked on Cloud 10 Beauty who are always having special discounts which is the perfect time to stock up.

If you on the look out for a more affordable option I was genuinely surprised by Rimmel In Shower Self Tan €13.99* as I mentioned above I am very busy (and lazy) so the idea of applying a tan and then washing it off later of the next day is just not a possibility for me.  I had heard about the St Tropez in shower tanner but heard you have to get out of the shower and apply the tan and wait 5 mins and "aint nobody got time for that".  Rimmel In Shower tan is very easy to apply and filled with nourishing oils.  You stand away from the water and apply the tan (no stepping outside the shower or messing about) and you can see where you have applied the tan cause the nourishing oils make the shower water run off the skin.   Your left with a natural looking tan and for me is a brilliant budget option.  

It will take a lot to beat the amazing Vita Liberata and am so impressed with the pHenomenal tan and extra points for it being not only a groundbreaking company its also Irish.

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Bourjois Rouge Edition Souffle De Velvet

Bourjois is one of my favourite affordable makeup brands and it helps when they launch incredible lip products - I am a sucker for a nice lip product-.  A couple of years ago Bourjois released Rouge Edition Velvet (read about them here) a long wearing liquid lipstick to challenge many a high end offering.  

This summer Bourjois are releasing a lighter, softer lip option (personally I welcome ALL lip options but these are really pretty).  Souffle de Velvet* come in 6 shades and have a wonderful mousse/velvet texture (I suppose texture of Souffle).  They have a very soft and light texture which makes them a pleasure to wear.  As with the Rouge Velvet's I like to apply two light layers to get the best from the Souffle.
Left to Right: 04 Ravie en rose, 03 VIPEACH, 02 Coquelic'oh!
Left to Right: 04 Ravie en rose, 03 VIPEACH, 02 Coquelic'oh!
04 Ravie en rose

04 Ravie en rose

02 Coquelic'oh!
02 Coquelic'oh!
Left to Right: 05 Fuchsiamallow, 06 Cherry leaders, 07 Plum Plum Pidou
05 Fuchsiamallow, 06 Cherry leaders, 07 Plum Plum Pidou

 05 Fuchsiamallow

06 Cherry leaders,

07 Plum Plum Pidou

I really love the texture of the Souffle de Velvet perfect for a light summer look.  I much prefer the lighter shades like 04 Ravie en rose and 03 VIPEACH as some of the pinky/red shades can be a bit "samey".

Bourjois Souffle de Velvets are out now and cost €12.50 but as its a chemist brand always keep an eye out for special offers.  
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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Bioderma Hydrabio Range

We all rejoiced when Bioderma finally came to Ireland and now they are launching the Hydrabio range which I think is going to be a huge hit.  Bioderma's Hydrabio range is aimed at dehydrated and sensitive skin.

Not to be confused with Dry Skin - Dehydration is a skin condition which can be easily fixed and is not exclusive to those with dry skin, as confusing as it may sound those with oily skin can be prone to dehydration.    Dehydrated skin is a huge skin condition in Ireland think of the wind and the heating and pollution all factors which can dehydrate the skin leaving it lackluster, drab and exacerbate fine lines.

I am a huge advocate of curing skin from the inside out so obviously drinking a lot of water and the right foods will help but unfortunately may not totally help hydrate the skin.  Bioderma (the name comes from the Biology of Dermatology so they know skin) have create the Hydrabio range to specifically target dehydrate skin.  The textures of the products are lighter with an interesting gel/cream texture which really targets the layers of the skin that are dehydrated

Bioderma is really famous for their micellar water so it makes perfect sense that they have developed a Hydrabio micellar water H20* (250ml €11.50), this removes makeup without leaving the skin tight or uncomfortable. 

Hydrabio Serum* (40ml €22.00) is my favourite product I have tried from the range, the gel/creme formula efficiently targets the dehydration.  This magic formula adsorbs easily, leaving the skin feeling radiant and refreshed.  Hydrabio products are not heavy so your skin doesn't feel oily or clogged.    I have been loving using the Serum and will definitely keep it as part of my skincare routine no matter what moisturiser I am using.  The serum leaves my skin feeling so nice that sometimes I forget to apply my moisturiser.

Bioderma give you the choice of moisturiser depending on your skin type for normal/oily skin there is Gel-Creme* (40ml €18.50) and for dry skin there is Creme (50ml €18.50).  I have been using the Gel- Creme and in conjunction with the Serum and my skin is in a very happy place.   The Creme is a slightly heavier texture to help skin which is both dry and dehydrated. 

For years I thought I had dry skin but it turns out I have oily skin that tends to be dehydrated, to combat my "dry" skin I would pile heavy moisturiser onto my skin which simply couldn't cope.  I was left with skin that was still dehydrated (which basically looks older), I was also left with clogged pores and millia from heavy product that wouldn't sink in.  Dehydrated skin needs lighter products which target the layers of skin which suffer from dehydration.  Since I have been using the Hydrabio range my skin feels hydrated and glowing, my skin feels smoother and softer and even some of the redness has reduced.

Hydrabio is a fantastic range which really helps improve dehydrated skin, at an affordable price.  

As part of the range there is also the Gommage (75ml €12.50) which is an exfoliating scrub.  

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Clarins Sunkissed Summer 2016 Collection

Clarins Summer Collections always get me very excited and this year the small but mighty collection is aptly called "Sunkissed".

The stand out product for me every summer is the always stunning limited edition bronzing compact, this year Clarins have created a Bronzing and Blush Compact* and I think I am even more in love.  The compact is big (but not unwieldy) and contains 3 different shade of bronzer (Matte and shimmer) and in the middle a pop of the most glorious peach.  You can apply the bronze shades separately or swish them together.  I have been loving the blush shade, it adds the perfect warmth to your face which we can so easily go wrong with especially when applying bronzer.  I am seriously addicted to the compact which with its large mirror would make it perfect to take on holidays.  The compact costs €45 which is a big investment but for that you are getting a whopping 20g of product (I recently picked up the Urban Decay Bronzer which is €29 for 9g of product).  This compact is going to last you years so is a fantastic investment.  To be honest (dont tell Clarins) but I am a little confused at why they release such an awesome bronzing palette every summer because there is so much product you will NEVER run out.  If you pick one up you will be waiting with anticipation for the next years offering.  

If you see me and think I have a radiant glow its all down to Clarins and the brilliant Bronzing & Blush Compact.  

All that and I haven't even mentioned the packaging (classic and stunning).

To the left the bronze shade mixed and to the right the glorious cheek colour which looks like nothing on the wrist but stunning on the cheeks.

I learned recently from a respected makeup artist that you should treat your lips like another part of your skincare routine which is easily done when you use Clarins lip products.  I have dry lips and while I might be a big fan of a "Slag Pink Lippy" my lips love the feel and treatment that Clarins products give.  Clarins are increasingly using all their skincare knowledge in their makeup products and you can feel the effects immediately with the lip products.  I have already been a fan of the Instant Light Lip Comfort Oils* and this summer a new shade Red Berry has been added (€21). 
The Instant Light Lip Comfort Oils are for the most part sheer with a hint of colour, if your like me and love a bit more oomph to your lip colours I have been lining my lips and colouring them in and using the lip oil on top.  

I also love the applicator which reminds me of a platypus tail.
Left to Right:  Honey, Raspberry and Red Berry

Clarins Fix Make-Up Spray*  (€28.00) is a surprise hit for me, setting sprays are one of those products that I use because I know I am supposed to but I tend to not get very excited about them and they are GUARANTEED to smudge my mascara.  Fix Make-Up caught my attention because its the only spray that hasn't smudged my mascara (I have tried MAC, Urban Decay, Smashbox).  Its a very fine spray that is supposed to smell of roses (I haven't noticed) add to that the beneficial skincare ingredients and you have a dam good setting spray.  

Clarins Double Fix Mascara* (€22.00) If I am being honest I haven't tested out this really clever product enough but since the weather is heating up (and in Ireland that means.....warm rain) I will have a chance to trial this properly.  Double Fix is so clever its actually two products, its a transparent mascara that can be used onto of ANY mascara to make it waterproof and it can also be used to groom and set your eyebrows.   How clever is that?  

The want is slightly smaller than a regular mascara wand making it easy to reach all lashes and to groom your brows. 

For me good makeup starts with good skin, I am in the hopes of improving my skin (being tired with a baby makes me reach for the wrong foods all the time) and I always feel that my skin is in good hands when I am using Clarins.  This summer Clarins have launched Skin Boosters (Energy Booster, Repair Booster and Detox Booster) these are oils which you add to your moisturiser to help your skin.  I have been using Detox Booster* (€39.00) for the past few weeks and I have been really loving it.  When I have used facial oils before I have found they sit on top of my skin not properly adsorbing, but you simply add a couple of drops of the Booster to your normal moisturiser and it sinks in like a dream leaving my skin feeling amazing.  There is a small dispenser at the bottom of the cleverly designed bottle which makes it easy to get the correct amount of product.  I have found my skin feels smoother with less blemishes and less redness on my cheeks (although a food detox would also help.  You really cant beat Clarins for their skincare. They are Skincare Geniuses. 
I have been using these little beauties every single day, Love them.

I have used a nude lip liner on my lips and applied Honey Comfort Oil on top - but look at the radiance from the cheeks, very subtle and classic.

Bronzing compact on the cheeks and Red Berry Lip Oil in the lips.
Clarins Sunkissed Collection is out now. Pin It
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