Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas

We would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year Pin It

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

NYX Round Lipstick Electra - The Perfect Red

Tis the season to wear Red Lipstick and what's better than discovering a wonderful red that's very affordable and now NYX has become easy to access these days we have no excuse.  NYX Round Lipsticks are a cult classic they are very affordable and don't have any scent - I find a lot of drugstore/affordable lipsticks overcompensate by adding daft fragrances to their lip products -. NYX Round Lipsticks are even more exciting cause that little bit at the end doesn't just tell you what shade lipstick it is, it also contains a gloss.  That's right a secret gloss compartment (very 007).  A lipstick and a lip gloss for €5.75 sure it would be wrong not to.

Electra is a stunning shade its so vibrant and such a beautiful red.  The lipstick is a lovely consistency that feels great on the lips.

I have been very excited to discover NYX stands popping up in local chemists AND there is also a much larger range available online at NYX and (here is a link to the round lipsticks).  Now what shades should I try next? Pin It

Monday, December 21, 2015

Urban Decay 24/7 Travel Size Set of 5 Cosmic

On one of my many recent trips to Urban Decay I noticed the Urban Decay 24/7 Travel Size Set of 5 Cosmic and thought it would go perfectly with the Gwen Stefani palette. 

The set contains five liners, three of which are new shades, one exclusive (Stag from Naked on the Run) and a black not bad for €31.00.

The liners are about half the size of a full size liner (which costs €19.50)

From Left to Right Zero, Stag, Cosmic, Trick, Supply,

I really like the 24/7 liners which I find great for the upper waterline.  They are soft so easy to apply but pigmented.  You have a small amount of time to work with the liner until it sets.  I like to apply shadow on top of the liner for a intense shade.  I have been loving the dark brown shade Stag.  I find that brown gives a softer look than black.

This little set is a great way to get a few different colours into your makeup collection....or as a gift....I suppose. Pin It

Sunday, December 20, 2015

L'Oreal Paris Color Riche Exclusive Reds - Blake

Ok Ok I know L'Oreal's current big release are the Collection Exclusive Pinks but they really aren't my cup of tea. I love a bit of Blake, oh her hair and since she has joined Instagram its brilliant to discover she is really funny.  In my mind I am trying to have Blake's simple but elegant style but somewhere along the way things have gotten a bit confused.  Blake's post baby hair looks fantastic - my post baby hair looks a little Krusty the Clown.   For now its safer to stick with lipstick. 
Blake's red just happens to embody classic Hollywood Glamour and also happens to be a perfect shade if your looking for a new red for Christmas (although I happen to think Red is perfect any time of the year). 

Its a beautiful shade but its also beautiful to wear, buttery and smooth on the lips.  It looks vibrant and brightens up the face.

L'Oreal Paris Color Riche Exclusive Reds cost €10.49 but Boots always have some kind of wonderful a deal.

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Saturday, December 19, 2015

Stila - A Whole Lot of Love Set

Did you know that you can buy Stila in larger Marks and Spencer Beauty Halls?  I discovered my local M & S in Liffey Valley have the most beautiful Stila stand and as well as that they had a few Christmas sets including one which is exclusive to Marks and Spencer.  Let me introduce you to Stila "A Whole Lot of Love".
The set (which costs €67.00) contains 20 eye shadows, 4 blush and a deluxe size Huge Extreme Mascara (my favourite Stila mascara EVER - its one of those mascaras that just keeps getting better as you use it).  Lets break that down into easy makeup maths maths at €67.00 for 24 shadows and blush that works out at €2.80 per pan and a free mascara.

The Holiday 2015 Collection from Stila is called "Sealed with a Kiss" and is all in the style of love letters so the packing is a beautiful gold with delicate handwriting design.  The colours in the palette are on the back on the main box. The collection's packaging is classic, chic and glamorous.

You open the wax stamp to reveal a large mirror and the shadows/blush.
The shadows have a beautiful range of colours which include matte, satin, metallic and shimmer.  The shadows are buttery and pigmented, a couple of the shadows have chunky glitter which are very pretty but not my favourite to work with (I'm a messy girl and can make mess in an empty room so I can look like the aftermath of a fairy disco when I start waving it around). The metallic shades are simply stunning, they are creamy with vibrant colour.

We will start with the blushes there are four shades with the lighter two on top and the shimmery shades underneath.
The blush shades are
Blush Shades: Left to Right

Light Pink, Dusty Rose
Peach Shimmer, Berry Shimmer
Swatches of Blush Shades
Light Pink, Dusty Rose
Peach Shimmer, Berry Shimmer
My favourite of the shades are the bottom two, Peach Shimmer gives that peachy glow similar to Nars Orgasm and Berry Shimmer is a lovely winter shade (which isn't that shimmery).  If your looking for a every day colour Dusty Rose is perfection.

Unusually for Stila they haven't included a booklet with looks, there are so many shades you can keep it really simple or go to town with bold and vibrant looks.
  • White Sparkle (mostly glitter)
  • Pale Peach (matte)
  • Nude Shimmer (shimmer)
  • Metallic Peach (rich and buttery metallic)
  • Rose Gold (divine metallic gold)
  • Rose Pewter (a chunky shimmer - swatches chunky but is beautiful when applied)
  • Seaweed (shimmer)
  • Metallic Taupe (can you improve on taupe? if you make it slightly metallic)
  • Warm Honey (matte)
  • Warm Taupe (matte)
  • Cool Taupe (matte)
  • Chocolate (matte)
  • Rose (matte)
  • Deep Plum (matte)
  • Lapis (absolutely divine, pigmented)
  • Denim (deep dark navy)
  • Frosted Lavender (not scarily frosted, shimmery)
  • Eggplant (matte)
  • Black Pearl (almost a dark gray with a sparkle)
  • Coal (matte)
Top Row Left to Right
White Sparkle, Pale Peach, Nude Shimmer, Metallic Peach, Rose Gold

The winner of the top row is easily Rose Gold its a stunning colour which is a joy to swatch and use.

Second Row Left to Right:
Rose Pewter, Seaweed, Metallic Taupe, Warm Honey, Warm Taupe
Winner of the Second Row is Metallic Taupe (can you tell I'm loving the metallic shades? there is something a little bit special about them).
Third row from Left to Right:

Cool Taupe, Chocolate, Rose, Deep Plum, Lapis. 
Clearly the winner of the third row is Lapis its beautiful
Fourth Row Left to Right:
Denim, Frosted Lavender, Eggplant, Black Pearl, Coal

This is a harder row to find a winner mmm Eggplant is beautiful and interesting but Black Pearl is sparkly but not too much so and Denim is a interesting alternative to black.

The Whole Lot of Love is a great palette its loaded with fantastic shades, you will use all the shades (but press the glittery shades - White Sparkle and Rose Pewter - onto your lids with your finger like you would the sparkly shade in the Charlotte Tilbury quads. 

If your heading out to Marks and Spencer's this weekend be sure and check it out, its a makeup lovers dream.

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Friday, December 18, 2015

Clarins The Essentials Eye Makeup Palette

I have No Doubt that the Gwen Palette from Urban Decay (sorry) will be the bestselling palette this Christmas but there are tons of others to pick from one of which is the Clarins The Essentials Eye Make Up Palette* (€43.00).  Clarins are making a tradition of releasing a larger (than their traditional 4 pan palette) the past couple of years with new but classic shades.

Clarins always remind me of Christmas - part of it is the festive red packaging but mostly its because I adore the skincare sets they release at Christmas.  Many years ago when I received my first Christmas bonus I took myself to Brown Thomas and bought a day cream Christmas set.  My absolute favourite thing about Clarins is their skincare which is amazing and honestly the older I get the more I believe in taking care on my skin first before applying makeup (don't worry I still apply makeup I'm just making an effort to take care of my skin).  So if you have a few bob to spend in Clarins I would say head straight to skin care.... your face will thank you.

When Clarins collections are released I am always more excited by the lip products than the eye products and that's because the lip products are are simply delicious, they smell, feel and look amazing.   I am never quite as excited by the eye products.

The Essentials palette is a very pretty neutral eye shadow palette, we have seen many many neutral eye palette but we all love them because they are so flattering and wearable and this is no exception.

The palette contains 10 shadows and a double ended brush (grand if your stuck but not the most amazing in the world, but better than most brushes that come in palettes)  the shades are laid out starting at the lightest (a lovely matte) and moving onto the darker shade.  The forth shade in is golden glitter that you would use to pop some festive bling on the lid.  The shadows are nicely pigmented and the shade at the end which is a wonderful purple/gray is an interesting addition to the palette.

Personally if I saw a Clarins box at Christmas I would be hoping for skincare (can you tell I'm all about skin care at the moment ? and one of my most loved products at the moment is the Clarins Mission Perfection Serum its amazing) but the Clarins The Essentials Eye Makeup Palette would make a lovely gift for a mam or mother in law.  Clarins have a great range of Christmas gifts (my mam is a huge fan of Eau Dynamisamte and I think if I picked her up something instead of the classic fragrance she would murder me) which you should check out if your shopping this weekend.
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Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Stila Eternal Love Liquid Lipstick Set

Stila have a beautiful range of Christmas sets out this year and the Eternal Love Liquid Lipstick Set is a wonderful way to dip your toe into the Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks.  The set contains 2 mini lipsticks for €22.50 (your basically getting one and a half full size lipsticks for less than the price of a full lipstick which costs €21.50).

I find sets like this and the Eternally Yours (read about it here) are a great way to try out colours you wouldn't normally wear (for me that's nudes or the very very deep shades). 

I love the Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks for bright long lasting vibrant colour but remember for long lasting lipsticks your lips need to be in brilliant condition.  It has been my quest this winter to keep my lips in brilliant condition so I can rock reds like the amazing shade in this set.

The set contains 3 shades Baci, Ricco and Beso.

From Left to Right: Baci, Ricco and Beso

Apologies for my slap dash application (blame the baby) you need to take your time with these as they are so pigmented.

Baci is not a shade I would normally go for (my aversion to nudes) but this is a flattering and wearable shade

Ricco is one vamp of a shade (most out of my comfort zone but still very fabulous)

Beso is a standout of the set - I cant believe I didn't already own this - its bright, vibrant, a true classic red.  Beso is the signature shade of Atlantic - Pacific blog.  Stila make some amazing reds.

One of the wonderful thing about Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks is if your feeling a little arty you can mix the shades together to create your own custom blend lipstick.

Stila Cosmetics can be bought from,  Harvey Nicks Dundrum, Sam McCauleys, Cara Pharmacy and Arnotts Dublin.  Ill try my very best to get my other Stila Christmas set up next week but ill have to wait for Santa to play with the rest.
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Monday, December 14, 2015

Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Eyeshadow Palette

When I was growing up I was a complete tomboy, my mam tried her best by putting ringlets in my hair and dressing me in nice dresses but I was like Calamity Jane (she found me in my Communion dress playing in the coal shed).  As a teenager I lived in jeans, check shirts and (because even though I was a tomboy I loved makeup) probably a bit of lipstick.  When Gwen Stefani rocked onto the scene it was so refreshing to see somebody who would wear a pair of combats but still rock some red lipstick.  I immediately thought she was brilliant.  I loved how she was like a glamours tomboy with perfect makeup and how she single handily made mehindi's a fashion statement (hands up who was guilty of wearing one?)   Years later I managed to see her perform at the RDS and as you would imagine she was a total Badass. Fast forward many (many) years my uniform is jeans and bright lipstick (and check shirts have made a comeback).  

I was beyond excited when I heard that Gwen Stefani was going to collaborate with Urban Decay.  Urban Decay is one of my favourite brands (they get to bring their dogs to work how awesome is that?) and Gwen's makeup is always immaculate.  Gwen worked on a makeup counter before she made it big with No Doubt and has said if she hadn't succeeded with the band she would have become a Makeup Artist her passion for makeup is clear on her perfectly eye lined face.  Most days I don't remember what I had for lunch but somehow all the words of Tragic Kingdom come back to me because I used to play the CD on repeat. 

Unlike most celebrity collaborations Gwen was heavily involved in the creation of the eyeshadow palette.  I can just imagine the fun that Urban Decay and Gwen had when creating the palette - both are Californian girls of similar age.  She designed the palette with herself in mind curating her own perfect palette, so as you can imagine there are a lot of shades to create a classic 50ies eye as well as a few bright pops of colour. 

Gwen oversaw every part of the design process from the delicious gold and white box to the sleek white design on the palette which was inspired by the interior design in Gwen's house (which really makes me want to have a look around Gwen's house).  There are small touches like the pop of pink polka dot on the inside of the packaging that show how well thought out the palette is.  The packaging of the palette is divine its like a modern pop art bible. 
There are 15 eye shadows in the palette including 5 matte shades.  The top two rows are neutral shades with the bottom row being the party row.  The shades on the top row are quite light (I found it hard to capture the true colour of the shades in photographs but the swatches are better) and in the picture below look quite similar.  Initially I thought these shades were a bit "samey" but if you think about it the light shades are great for 2 reasons.....

1.  Gwen uses light shades on her lid for her signature lined eye and red lip look
2.  The only eyeshadow I have ever fully used have been light shades 

If you think of it these three shades are like the "GO TO" shade in a palette that you use up but with slight variation.  

The collaboration took a number of years and Gwen has said she agonised over which shades to put in the palette.  Image getting to make your own custom Urban Decay palette.  All the eye shadows have been well though through - 15 shades featuring 3 of Gwen's all time favourite Urban Decay eye shadows and 12 new shades created by Gwen and the Urban Decay Team even down to the names of the shadows.
Lets look throught the shades 

Top Row:  As you can see when swatched the shadows look different on the skin
Blonde (Cause Gwen is a glorious blonde) Pale Beige with pink iridescent shift
Bathwater (a No Doubt Song) pale beige with gold pearl
Skimp (One of Gwen's favourite Urban Decay Shadows) pale nude satin
Steady (after the No Doubt Album RockSteady) medium rose with metallic gold shift
Punk (Gwen's original style of music) reddish brown matte

From the first row I have been loving Bathwater and Punk but my favourite shade is Steady all over the lid.

Baby (inspired by her fashion line LAMB - LOVE ANGEL MUSIC BABY) cool metallic rose
Anaheim (where Gwen grew up) light taupe brown matte
Stark (a Urban Decay Favourite shade) nude pink matte
Zone (after the song Danger Zone) medium brown matte
Serious (a Gwen Song) smoky gray with iridescent floating pearl

Normally I wouldn't be crazy about this many browns but I have been loving Anaheim and Zone both matte browns which have been working brilliantly in my slightly creased and tired eyes.

Pop (her current type of music) pale coral with iridescent sparkle
Harajuku (one of her style influences - who can forget the Harajuku girls?) metallic blue-pink with iridescent micro shimmer
Danger (because we like a little danger) deep metallic royal blue with blue micro sparkle
1987 (the year No Doubt formed) bright metallic yellow gold
Blackout (Gwen's favourite black from Urban Decay) blackest black matte

This row surprised me the most - I thought a Urban Decay palette would have one of their signature purple shades - Danger is a stunning shade, I thought 1987 would be too metallic for me but I have been loving it on my lid the shade makes my eyes vibrant and alive (as opposed to the Walking Dead vibe I have been looking a lot like lately).  I am most surprised by Harajuku, you say "pink eyeshadow" I think "conjunctivitis" and nobody wants to look like they have Pink Eye.  Harajuku is a little bit of magic on the lids and inner corner especially with Anaheim or Zone in the crease.

I love that there are 5 matte shades in the palette.  Urban Decay matte shadows are smooth, pigmented and very easy to work with, I used to hate matte shadows but they are so flattering on my slighting ageing eyes.  I have been using Urban Decay's matte eye shadow primer Eden before I apply the shadows and it works as a perfect base. 

I have grown up with Urban Decay but its one of those brands that slightly older woman might be afraid of, the vibrant counter and bright shades could be intimidating.  Urban Decay might always stay young and amazing at heart but they are aware time catches up on us all and have created an amazing range of products for anti ageing (which has ingredients to smooth wrinkles) like the Anti Ageing Primer Potion, The Brightening and Tightening Completion Primer and the whole Naked Skin foundation range has anti ageing properties.  I love that Urban Decay is helping me look younger and kick ass at the same time.

I have been collecting Urban Decay palettes for years, the shadows have always been amazing but the palette designs are so impressive.  The Gwen palette is my favourite Urban Decay palette so far. I have been absolutely loving the Gwen Palette (much to the sadness of the Vice 4 palette which has been calling softly from my makeup counter), its one of those products that makeup me happy just to look at, when I open and swatch the eye shadows I get giddy.  I have never had a "back up" of an eye shadow palette but I have a niggling in the back of my brain I need a back up Gwen (unless it becomes permanent wouldnt that be brilliant).  I think the shades in the palette are perfect mix of everyday neutrals with pops of colour I never thought would suit me but are amazingly flattering.  The palette has a few light colours which suite the Irish complexion perfectly.
We cant talk about Gwen Stefani and makeup without talking about Lipstick, when I first heard there was a Urban Decay collaboration I thought "it has to be lips" but to trick us they released they eye shadow palette with a sneak peak of the lipstick launch (coming in March 2016).  There are samples of 4 of the lipsticks (there will be 8 in the range) and a image of one of the most beautiful lipsticks I have ever seen.  Since I had the baby I have been quite grown up with my lipstick purchased but I feel I am going to do some damage.

 When I was in chatting to the Urban Decay girls before the palette was released they all had their names down on the list (as well as girls from the other makeup counters) and there was a real buzz about the palette.  Its one of those products I am a giddy about, I have brought friends to the counter to tell them about it (I do this all the time with Stila) and basically act as a sales person... doesn't matter if your a stranger and standing beside me I will guide you through the palette too I'm helpful like that.

If you are to put one makeup item on your Christmas list this year it has to be Gwen Stefani's Eye shadow Palette - you may think you dont need it but I guarantee when you see it you will have to have it.

The Gwen Stefani Palette is out now and costs €46.00. Pin It
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