Sunday, 19 June 2016

Pregnancy Update: 38 weeks and What I've Learnt So Far


The bun is still in the oven, although not for much longer. With under two weeks to go until my due date I thought I'd give you a little update and share what I've learnt about pregnancy so far. Quick confession, the picture above is actually a few weeks old (sorry I've not really mastered the bumpie) so imagine if you will, my bump is a couple centimetres bigger, but do me a favour - please don't add any more weight to my arm!

What I've learnt so far:


People touch! And I'm not just talking actual friends and family, but random strangers! Erm I don't know where your hands have been - get the F off! Or is that the hormones speaking?

Everyone has an opinion and they’re not afraid to tell you– you’re so big, you’re so small, oh I don’t like that name!

People judge! Oh you're having a water birth, what'd you mean you haven't bought isofix, I wouldn't buy THAT PRAM!

Supermarkets are dangerous places. I don't know why, but I can't push a trolley around tesco without encountering at least one of the above. One checkout lady told asked me if everything was ok with my baby's growth charts because my bump looked too small. Oh and there was the romany gypsy that pointed at my bump and screeched "BOY!!!!" That's what you get for going to Lidl.

Don’t watch one born every minute. Just don't.

You get hairy, EVERYWHERE! The elation of discovering my fine head hair was getting a whole lot thicker was short lived when I discovered it wasn't the only place. Basically new hairs grow, but the old ones don't shed, at least not until after the baby is born. So if you're already dark and hairy like me, be prepared to look like a Gallagher brother.

Getting off the sofa is a serious challenge. I'm at the roll over and slide stage. If you manage it unaided - pat on the back!

I’ll rub your feet every day when you’re pregnant” lasts about two weeks!

You have no control over your tear ducts. You know you're in trouble when you cry at Geordie Shore!

You will have to buy maternity pads and yes, they are HUGE!!

Money saved on nights out and bottles of wine can be better spend on makeup and shoes – the only two things that now fit.

BUT be prepared for mothers guilt. I now equate everything to how many nappies/baby growers/childcare vouchers I can buy with that.

Pregnancy/Life update


You'll have noticed posts have been a little thin on the ground lately. I am sorry about this, but between work and nesting aka erratic cleaning, unnecessary diy and ruthless sort outs, there hasn't been much time for beauty. Thanks for sticking with me and I promise I'm not about to give up on blogging. Still no cravings, other than eating oranges (sadly no gherkin McFlurry's), but I am hungry all.the.time! I rarely make it though the night without a 4am snack. Fortunately I broke up from work last week - in my mind I'm now a lady of leisure. I had a wonderful Clarins Luxury Pedicure yesterday (Dean tried bless him, but he's no nail technician) and I've been enjoying pregnancy reflexology - the mot relaxing experience ever. And I hate to brag but I have timed my mat leave brilliantly - Wimbledon starts next week and season 4 of Orange is the New Black has just been released on Netflix! I'm making the most of early nights and late mornings... whilst I still can.

Before I go, I wanted to share my Maternity Hero Products...



I couldn't have done with without the Dreamgenii Maternity Pillow, Bio Oil, Palmers Cocoa Butter Massage Lotion, Liz Earle Instant Tonic Spritz.

Judgemental/touchy people aside, I have had a fantastic pregnancy. It hasn't always been a walk in the park - sleepless nights, 4am hunger, fainting, but for the most part I've been really well. I've loved having my bump, feeling movements is an absolute miracle, stretchy-band maternity jeans are fashions best kept secret, my skin's glowing and in a couple of weeks I get to meet my baby. I'd do it all again in a heart beat... she says before THE LABOUR!

Good luck to all you pregnant ladies out there and best wishes to my yummy mummies, see you on the other side! Claire x


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Friday, 17 June 2016

This Mascara is NOT for the Faint Hearted


When it comes to mascara I thought I'd seen it all, but the L'Oreal False Lash Sculpt Mascara  really is the strangest looking lash contraption yet! It's not the easiest mascara in the World to use, but you can NOT argue with those results!

So, as far as wands go, it's as fiddly as fiddly comes. There's probably a knack to it, I just haven't quite mastered it yet. You're supposed to gently press the brush against the waterline, before combing the lashes. In an effort to achieve this and get as close as humanly possible, I usually blink or flinch and end up with mascara in my eye! But practice makes perfect with this one and I'm getting better. Forget everything you know about applying mascara. I usually coat both sides, do horizontal and vertical stokes, wiggle it about... DON'T! This one works best if you open your eyes wide, place the wand at the root of the lashes - the closer the better, and slowly comb upwards whilst gently closing your eyes. The formula is pretty wet  so all you need is a couple of strokes and you're good to go.

Application challenges aside, this mascara is bloody good! Super dark, glossy black pigments coat the lashes generously. The lash sculptor brush really does sculpt, shape and fan the lashes perfectly. The results - longer, fuller, thicker sky-scraper lashes! And this is just one application, two would yield full-on falsies looking va va voom lashes.

See the difference!


Another great does-it-all mascara from L'Oreal! Buy Lash Sculpt Mascara £9.99 and currently 3 for 2 at Boots and Superdrug 


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Monday, 6 June 2016

Finally, the Tan That Doesn't Stank!


YESSSSSS!!! They’ve finally cracked it! The holy grail of tanning has been achieved – self tan that doesn’t smell like tan!

During my pregnancy I’ve avoided self-tan. There’s no evidence that it’s in any way harmful to the baby (I ain’t talking sunbeds) but all those chemicals can’t be good, so I’ve embraced the naturalle. That was until the sun came out and I contemplated baring limbs that haven’t seen the light of day since last August. I decided a tinted moisturiser/gradual tanner, which contains less tanning agent would be the best option, just as St Tropez revamped their gradual tan.

So what’s changed?
The main headlines are, it’s now tinted so you can see where you’re putting it and there’s a newly formulated mood-enhancing fragrance that doesn’t smell like fake tan.

I wacked it on the other night, slept it in and completely forgot I was wearing it – no nasty biscuit smell and no dodgy brown residue on the bed sheets. Don’t be deterred by the bottle colour. It looks a little scary – quite dark and not all that natural looking, but as the picture above shows, it sheers out on application giving the tiniest hint of bronze - enough so you don't look dug up but not enough that you look instantly tango’d. It’s completely faff-free too – no need for a tanning mit, pop up tent, none of the usual tanning nonsense, just apply it like a normal body moisturiser. I love that it’s now tinted – none of the slap it on and see approach - you can see exactly where you have and haven't applied it. The texture’s pretty thick but it spreads easily enough and reveals a completely streak-free bronze. The colour develops gradually – it’s natural and subtle but packs a decent enough punch. Not like the in-shower tan that takes a good few applications before you see any hint of colour. I actually felt sufficiently tanned after one application. Sure I didn’t look like I’d been for a spray tan, but I did look like I had a day of two in the sun and really that’s all I wanted.

Bravo St Tropez!


Buy St. Tropez Gradual Tan Tinted Lotion £12/200ml LookFantastic


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Tuesday, 24 May 2016

The One Where I met Charlotte Tilbury... and asked some cheeky questions


Look at those hands, there’s no one they haven’t touched – Kate Moss, Victoria Beckham, Kim K, she’s done em all. So getting a chance to meet the woman in person and ask some juicy questions for myself was a dream.. even pregnancy fainting couldn’t stop me! 

Surround by beautiful make up artists, exquisite roses, the aroma of Diptyque candles and all the gold encased Tilbury product you can imagine, including the not-yet-released hot lips (yes the Kim K W shade is to die for), myself and a small number of bloggers and press waited for the raven haired siren to enter the room.

When Charlotte enters the room, you.know.it! She has that presence, that star quality, plus she shouts “Hello Darlings!” She walked the room, shaking everyone’s hands, asking names and staring deep into their makeup – thank gawd I’d donned the her signature Dolce Vita look. I swear she gave me a telepathic seal of approval – good job darling.

In Newcastle to officially launch her counter in Fenwick, the make up maven spent hours with us talking passionately about her entire product line, how she discovered the transformative power of make up and the American women that use her wonder cream on their lady areas (I’ll not repeat the word she used, but rhymes with Stussy). Charlotte’s passion is infectious. She clearly cares about women. She wants to empower them and make them feel like the best versions of themselves. Yes, her brand is expensive, but it’s expertly curated to make professional looking make up accessible - Runway to real way! Her make up wardrobes include everything you need to create your chosen look along with simple how-to videos and tips, she teaches you what blush goes with what lipstick and the best shadows for your eye colour.

Charlotte’s secrets spilled… 


  • The Kardashians are really lovely girls and a pleasure to work with!
  • Light Wonder Foundation is Kim K’s and Kylie J’s off duty make up of choice.
  • Charlotte’s top 3 can’t be withouts – Magic Cream, Full Fat lashes Mascara and Eyeliners.
  • The one person she hasn’t worked on but would love to – THE QUEEN
  • Her favourite client (and I really had to push for an answer because she LOVES everyone) Kate Moss!

Here's a little peak of the stunning hot lips collection - it took all the restraint I have not to accidentally let them drop in my bag...


Meeting Charlotte was an absolute pleasure. She did not disappoint and was everything I wanted her to be – hilarious, outrageous, open, honest, witty, wise, charming and super knowledgeable. I’m even more obsessed with the woman and came away with a wish list longer than my arm. Being gifted on of her amazing get the look boxes (Rock Chick) was the icing on the cake – I promise I’ll do the look and share soon.

Check out the Charlotte Tilbury counter in Fenwick. Tilbury transformations start at £35 and are fully redeemable against products. And watch out for Hot lips landing in July!



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Monday, 16 May 2016

Dermalogica Charcoal Rescue Mask - Skin’s New BFF


Does.It.All! Three words I can’t get enough of right now. As my time continues to be squeezed I’m all about the multi-tasking products. Enter Dermalogica charcoal Rescue mask – a powerful treatment mask that delivers a cocktail of benefits. A little bit of science first then I'll tell you exactly how it rescued my skin...

The formula contains activated Binchotan Charcoal, which absorbs impurities and draws out excess sebum and toxins. It's basically a 7 minute detox for the skin. It exfoliates, both chemically and mechanically and ingredients including Volcanic Ash, Sea Silt, Bamboo Extract and Sulphur promotes cell turner for dramatically brighter skin. The mask also treats acne, calms rosacea and soothes eczema or sebaceous dermatitis, making it a fantastic treatment for a variety of skin woes. Niacinamide helps reduce congestion and calm the skin, while Chilean Wild Mint helps refine pores.

How to Use

Not only is it a clever-cloggs, does-it-all-mask, it’s also quick and easy to use with visible (and touchable) results after just 7 minutes. Whack a generous layer onto clean/cleansed skin. Unlike other clay masks it doesn’t dry and go chalky really quickly. There’s plenty time to smooth it on and it doesn’t end up crumbling off when you move your face. It takes just 7-10 minutes to do the biz. Wet your hands, give it al good old massage to enhance the exfoliating properties, then rinse. Heads up, it’s a bit messy, and extremely dark so don’t use your fluffy white face cloth.  

Results

I used it for the first time. Looked in the mirror, thought um, my skin looks good. It’s had a good bloody clean out, skin’s brighter, pores are tighter. Then I touched it and oh my god – babies.bum! I swear my skin has never felt so soft. I decided not to go straight in with moisturiser, I wanted to give it some time to see how my skin reacted – no drying or tightening whatsoever. Then when I did apply my serum and moisturiser, they glided on smoothly giving me the most ridiculously even base, along with a kick-ass healthy glow

I can absolutely vouch for the fact it draws out impurities. You know when you go for a good facial and you’re “rewarded” with spots. Well after my first use of the Charcoal Mask I did get a few pimples, but better out than in, am I right? I’d highly recommend this if you’re preparing for a special event/night out and you want your skin brighter and tighter. Just make sure you don’t use it the day before, give some time for those nasty impurities to get out and stay out!

Charcoal Rescue Masque £38/$46 dermalogica | John Lewis | Ultra 

Have you tried it yet?


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Sunday, 8 May 2016

Hello Bright Eyes!


Sometimes getting a solid eight hours of shut-eye a night is out of the question – especially with a gymnastic baby back flipping in your belly! More than ever I’m having to rely on good skincare to cheat the appearance of “awake n with it”.

Cue the newest edition to the Liz Earle Superskin dynasty – SuperSkin Eye Cream £35/15ml*.

This triple threat cream is packed full of botanical and active ingredients designed to to visibly lift and firm the delicate eye contour, reduce puffiness and the appearance of dark circles. The luxuriously hydrating formula is creamy and rich but not in the slightest bit heavy. It absorbs fully! This is absolutely paramount to me. I apply concealers and highlighters around the eye area and need an eye creams that will work in harmony with them – not ones that sit there or cause my make up to slide. Superskin Eye Cream provides an even, hydrated, youthfully plumped base. If definitely soothes the puffiness and helps to neautralise the appearance of dark circles. Fortunately my lines are still pretty fine, but this does a great job of hydrating and plumping them – thus making them barely detectable, nice one Lizzy! As with all of the Superskin range, it’s jam packed with a botanical blend of rosehip, borage and cranberry seed oil and carries the signature (and heavenly) superskin scent.

Before - After
I've been using this cream for around a month now and have seen a visible improvement around the eye contour area. Often we think we have lines/wrinkles, but we're actually dehydrated, which accentuates crows feet. Using Superskin Eye Cream has seriously improved the moisture, hydration and plumpness of the contour area, which in turn improves the appearance of lines and wrinkles! 

Available from Liz Earle | John Lewis | Boots

Liz Earle Superskin Eye Cream will have you bright eyed and bushy tailed in no time, sleep or no sleep!


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Thursday, 5 May 2016

Fenwick Beauty Week 2016 and the Beauty Bag you won't want to miss!


Listen up ladies, Fenwick Beauty Week is back and it’s bigger and better than ever!

From Saturday 07th May to Sunday 15th May, Fenwick stores will be dedicating themselves to all things beauty. Masterclasses, makeovers, gifts with purchases and more. It’s an ideal opportunity to spruce up your beauty routine just in time for Summer 16. I went along to Fenwick Newcastle earlier in the week for a little taster sesh, and believe me, you don’t want to miss out. I got to watch a professional Charlotte Tilbury make up demo and experience the best facial of my life at Sisley. Needless to say I came away with a wishlist worthy of Kim K. Can I just say, how amazing is Fenwick Newcastle these days!? After a stunning makeover, the addition of a massive Charlotte Tilbury counter and its proximity to THAT FOOD HALL, it’s my number on shopping destination.

3 Reasons to celebrate Beauty Week


Live stage demos, masterclasses and more with leading make up artists from Tom Ford, Laura Mercier and Bobbi Brown, to mention just a few. 

15% off beauty at the Fenwick Newcastle Summer shopping event – Tuesday 10th May 6-10pm get your voucher here.

Best of all, spend £75 or more in the beauty hall (I’ve had bigger challenges) and bag this exclusive beauty bag worth over £100 for free…



Check your local Fenwick store for the full line up of beauty treats on offer in your area


EIGHT DAYS OF NOTHING BUT BEAUTY... I'M IN! ARE YOU?
#FENWICKBEAUTYWEEK


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Saturday, 30 April 2016

Pregnancy Update - 31 Weeks

Sleepsuit John Lewis | Drawer dividers Ikea

Hi beauties! Long time, no blog, I KNOW! I've been finding it really difficult to find the time and energy lately. You what they say, life happens and there's a whole lotta life happening right now. I'm in my final trimester - shit's getting very real. Things were going really well. I was almost feeling guilty when people asked if i had morning sickness, swollen ankles, mood swings? Nope, nope and nope! Then, the fainting started! Apparently it's common side effect of pregnancy? It's pretty scary at the time and I feel completely wiped out but the important thing is the baby is absolutely fine! Still no cravings (except oranges). I was really looking forward to sending baby daddy to McDonalds at 2am for a box of gherkins. Maybe i still will as punishment for the lack of foot rubs - "I'll rub your feet every day when you're pregnant" lasted about two weeks!

Oh and I finally understand NESTING. I've watched on in the past as pregnant friends become possessed by the need to nest and thought - what are you flapping about! The baby doesn't care if the skirting boards have been painted! Then it happened to me. I'm part Kim and Aggie and part Drill Sergeant. I need it doing and I need it doing NOW! Every cupboard has to be cleared, every drawer emptied. If it's not nail down, it's going to the charity shop. NOTHING'S SAFE! Even my makeup has taken the hit - I'm all about downsizing now.

Aside from the fainting and the nesting monster, things are great and I'm feeling truly blessed. I wanted to thank you all for your support and reassure you in no way have i gone off blogging. I've got so many exciting things to blog about - I met Charlotte Tilbury last week, I've discovered a load of new skin saviours and I have a new makeup storage solution! As soon as I get my mojo back I'll tell you all about it.

Claire x


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Thursday, 21 April 2016

Lash Domination from an Unlikely Source!



If you like your brushes big and your lashes bigger – this could be the mascara for you. 


It’s all about the base over at bareMinerals HQ, but who knew they could be a contender in the mascara stakes. Lash Domination Volumising Mascara offers a staggering 10 benefits (count them) Volumises, Lengthens, Thickens, Separates, Lifts, All-day wear, Mineral fortified, Smudge-resistant, Resists clumps. It has one of the most unique wants out there with the ProTwist180™ is spiralled 180 degrees to curve around each lash and coat ALL angles with intense black colour. Plus, it’s powered by nourishing minerals and quinoa protein – why the hell not!

So the brush is a hell of a size! Great if you like a quick sweep n go, or you have wide eyes. For me it took a little getting used to – I gravitate towards the smaller, more precise tools. But get used to it I have and now we’re flying. Don’t be intimidated by the twist style brush, it’s actually really easy to use. Despite its size, it’s not messy or clumpy in the least. It coats lashes evenly with exceptional separation, fanning and a good dose of curve. The first coat is pretty natural, the second, is when you really see the domination in action! You can easily build up to the length and volume your heart desires and at absolutely no point do things get clumpy. The results are pretty impressive – supped up volume, length, curl, jet black colour, long-lasting, no clumping and no smudging. A great all-rounder! Check out the before and after...


Lash Domination Volumising Mascara rrp £18/$19 bareMinerals | Feel Unique | Sephora 


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Thursday, 14 April 2016

Hair Saviour Right Here!


L'Oreal Paris Elvive Extraordinary Clay Re-Balancing Shampoo £2.59 Boots

They’ve only gone and done it again. I didn’t think the hair gods, aka L’Oreal could improve on Fibrology, but then came Extraordinary Clay

I’ll cut to the quick – this shampoo has transformed my hair. It's taken me from an every other dayer to a twice a weeker – hair washes that is. Being able to go three days is rare, unless I’m hiding in the house, or under a hat. The first time I used this I got 4 whole days out of it! A couple of weeks in, I’m comfortably getting 3-4 days before the grease slick slides in.

The shampoo itself smells gorgeous. It works up a reassuringly thick and rich lather and rinses clean with no residue. My hair is fine, a little flat and prone to greasy roots. Elvive Extraordinary Clay definitely zaps the greasy roots but without making my locks frizzy or dry and most importantly for me, still gives my hair a good lift and leaves it feeling thicker and stronger. L'Oreal have basically served up my hair wish list on a pretty mint green platter. Big love for the mint green bottle by the way and the fact that it matches my favourite nail shade Essie Mint Candy Apple gives it extra kudos.

I’m not entirely convinced by the appeal of Clay for the hair. If it says volume, thickening, fattening or plumping, I’m like a moth to a flame, but this I probably would never have even picked this up, so thank gawd I came across a sample in a magazine! I still love Fibrology and I’ll reach for it whenever my hair needs some va-va-voom volume, but for now, Extraordinary Clay is my daily go-to! And the fact that it's just £2, is the icing on the (mint green) cake!

Have you tried it yet?


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Friday, 8 April 2016

Bargain Beauty: NYX HD Concealer Wand


First of all, super, super, SUPER happy to finally have NYX on this side of the pond – it’s been a long time coming!

I’ve heard great things about NYX HD Concealer Wand, some even say it’s a dupe for Urban Decay’s much raved about Naked concealer, so for a mere fiver I had to investigate.

Marketed as a “lightweight medium to heavy coverage cover-up for imperfections and under eye circles”, it’s a damn good all-rounder! Spots, dark circles, discolourations – it’s got them covered! The concentrated emollient-rich formula goes on smoothly, it’s pretty thick, but not too thick that you can’t easily spread it around and in blends seamlessly into the skin… with a little help from some warm fingers. It dries quickly and sets to a natural demi-matte/matte finish. As far as under eye concealers go, it could be a bit on the thick side for me. Not thick like stiff compact concealers (Laura Mercier Secret Camo for example) but not as lightweight and creamy as I like on that delicate area. That said, it never looks cakey and it totally slays the blue tones under my eyes.

The range of shades isn’t expansive but I found a decent match with CW4 beige. It’s pretty neutral – not overly pink or yellow toned. If I was to compare it to MAC, I’d say it’s somewhere between a 25 and 30. They also do a green, lavender and yellow shades for correcting.  


So, is it a dupe for Urban Decay’s Naked Concealer? It comes close, although I’d say Urban’s is a little more light weight. It’s also pretty similar to the iconic Collection concealer – another damn good bargain beauty.

Pros – Price, coverage, long lasting
Cons – Can be drying, depending on your skin type


Overall NYX HD Concealer Wand £5.99 Boots does a bloody good job of hiding the bits you don’t want people to see. 


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Friday, 1 April 2016

Looking for a Flawless Base? Try this!



They don’t call it make up artistry for nothing! Application is a skill and to truly nail it, an artist needs the best tools. There’s absolutely no denying a good brush can completely transform how you foundation performs. My latest love nails the tricky hard to reach in seconds and achieves a flawless, even base.

Sigma F88 Flat Angled Kabuki Brush £17 is a super densely packed, flat topped, angled kabuki brush made from super soft synthetic fibres. It’s designed for cream and liquid foundation application, and thanks to the angled design, also doubles up as an expert contouring brush.

It has a large surface area that works the whole face in seconds. The flat area covers the flat panes of the face effortlessly, whilst the curved, slanted edges fit the hard to reach fiddly areas around the nose and under the eyes seamlessly. It completely saves me from having to go back in with a smaller brush. The bristles are very soft, very smooth and a pleasure to sweep around my face. I’ve been using it with liquid foundations – Chanel Vitalumiere and bareMienrals bareSkin. I find the best way is to stipple the product using the flat area around the face where I need the most coverage, then using circular/sweeping movements, blend the product out. I’ll then tilt it round to the angled edges to navigate around the nose area, around the brows and to get right up under my eye area. This brush helps to achieve a fuller coverage without looking cakey and a leaves behind nothing but a flawless, airbrushed finish. 



The F88 aint “thirsty” either. It’s always a worry with densely packed kabuki brushes that they’ll drink up most of the product, but this one doesn’t. It’s something to do with special Sigmax fibres that don’t absorb the product. This is my first Sigma brush – I’ve admired them from afar for years but availability in the UK has been patchy. The quality really shines though – from the softness of the bristles, the comfort of the handle, even the embossed logo on the neck. They’re far from the priciest brushes around – nowhere near the dizzy heights of Charlotte Tilbury or Tom Ford, but they perform like one. 

Seriously flawless, super fast! Have you tried Sigma brushes? 


Sigma Brushes available from Amazon | Cult Beauty | HQ Hair 


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Saturday, 26 March 2016

Let's Take a (BARE) Selfie



Calling all selfies obsessives.

bareMinerals is about to launch the competition for you! Fancy winning a spa weekend for two, an exclusive bareMinerals selfie kit and a limited-edition GHD Azores Styler? All you’ve got to do it upload a #bareselfieuk! And I'm not talking bare in the Kardashian sense. Simply grab your friend, pop along to your nearest bareMinerals counter for a little makeup lesson, take a picture of the look and share on social media – simples!

Here’s my effort. This whole look was created using only bareMinerals products. I thought I’d go for a flawless base (they’re all about the base), flutterful lashes and a pretty pop of pink colour to get me in the spring mood.



BASE

Complexion Rescue – what else, I simply adore this (full review here). I used a swept on with my most used/most loved Smoothing Face Brush 
Original Foundation – lightly buffed onto the places I need a little extra coverage.
bareSkin Concealer – the new kid on the block. It’s an amazingly light weight concealer but it gives really good coverage. I’ve applied it mainly under my eye area.
bareSkin perfecting veil – lightly dusted all over the face to set the look with the Supreme Finisher Brush

Blush/Lips/Lashes

Ready Bronzer in Skinny Dip to add a little natural glow
Pop of Passion Blush in natural dabbed into the apples of the cheeks with the Smoothing Face Brush for a youthful dewy glow.
Lashings of Lash Domination


Competition Details

To enter, visit a bareMinerals counter with a friend, enjoy a make up lesson of your choice, take a picture of the look and upload to social media using #BARESELFIEUK and tag @bareMineralsUK. The competitions runs from 03rd to 30th April 2016. Winners chosen at random and announced on 06th May 2016.

Ready, SELFIE, Go!



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Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Suped-Up Skincare!

 


Fact – skin changes during pregnancy. And whilst mine is faring pretty well so far, I have noticed a lack in hydration, which in turn emphasises my “minor” lines and imperfections. I ain’t going down like that! So it’s time to up the skincare ante. Enter Liz Earle Superskin Moisuriser.

Basically, it’s heaven in a jar. To sum up how it leaves my skin - Radiant, replenished and seriously plumptious!  If you’re not familiar with Liz Earle skincare, they do the standard moisturiser Skin Repair (the one in the blue tube) in three variations – light, normal/combo and dry/sensitive. Then there’s the super supped-up Superskin moisturier – “for very dry and mature skin types”.  Far be it for me to tell Liz how to market her products, but I think she’s doing Superskin a disservice – I fall into neither of those categories but I’m seriously loving this moisturiser.

The texture is rich, luxurious and very creamy. It contains all the botanical beauties you’d expect plus collagen-boosting pomegranate flower extract, omega-3, antioxidants and all that jazz. It’s a pleasure to massage into the skin. It spreads easily and absorbs pretty quickly. At first I thought I’d only use this as a night time treat, but I tried it on a morning and guess what, my skin didn’t turn into a total grease bomb and my foundation did not slide off! It leaves my skin looking soft, supple, hydrated, HEALTHY, glowing and seriously plumped like I’ve just had a sneaking collagen boost. In short, it’s superfood for the face! 

It captures the same heavenly neroli scent as Superskin Concentrate (possibly my favourite product EVER) but in a non-overpowering way (there’s a fragrance free if neroli ain’t your bag). Luxury like this comes at a price - £39/50ml jar here, but stand that up next to the likes of Elemis Marine Cream (I believe this one's far better) and the Cult creams of the World, this one's priced fairly reasonably.

I’m so glad I made the switch - no going back now! 


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Thursday, 17 March 2016

A Whole Lotta Pout! Charlotte Tilbury Iconic Nude Lip Cheat


If there's one thing Charlotte Tilbury got absolutely right in her product range, it's Lip Cheats. These clever little sticks really do cheat the perfect pout. You know how much I adore Pillow Talk - review here. Now it's time for some iconic nude.

For me, what sets Lip Cheats apart is the ease of application. The product glides on effortlessly with no tugging or dragging. I recently tried the l'oreal infallible lip liners, they've got the shades (and price) down, but the colour pay off was pitiful and I had to keep pressing and going back over the get the product to transfer. Lip cheats are rich and velvety. The product glides on with complete control and what you see in the pencil is the colour you get on your lips. Let's talk colour - finding the "perfect" nude lip pencil is no easy task. Too light, you get concealer lips, too dark, you look like an 80s throw back. Iconic nude is that somewhere in the middle, just right shade I've been searching for. A Brigitte Bardot style medium warm beige with just enough brown to stop it looking like concealer. It's a fairly universal shade that goes perfectly with so many of my lip sticks - MAC Honeylove, Charlotte Tilbury Penelope Pink and in the picture I'm wearing it with a little Revlon Lip Butter Creme Brûlée.


It's a simple fact that clever lip lining can make lips look bigger but there's something extra special about Lip Cheats. They really do pump them up and create the illusion of fuller, fatter, va-va room lips - but in a natural way. I don't find them drying in the least and the staying power is fantastic. They're just all round bloody fantastic!

On the subject of Charlotte Tilbury and lips, have you heard about the new Hot Lips range? 12 new iconic shades inspired by empowering women - Penelope Cruz, Sienna Miller, Cindy Crawford et al... I'm not even going to pretend that I'm not excited about the Kim K one! Out late June, more info here.

Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat £16 direct from Charlotte Tilbury | John Lewis | Selfridges


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Friday, 11 March 2016

The Highlight Arsenal Part 2 – The Liquids



Highlighters, we can’t get enough of them. In part one I shared my fave powders, it’s now time to shine a light on the lovely liquids! Liquid highlighters are a great way of achieving more of a natural glow. A great way to fake-it-to make it, they’re less obvious than powders and leave that much coverted dewy glow.  

for all over, lit from within radiance 

Laura Mercier Radiance Primer £29 John Lewis

Highlighter and primer in one! The flesh coloured cream imparts the most stunning lit from within, super-healthy glow. There’s no obvious shimmer or frostiness, just the most exquisite pearl tint that creates a soft focus effect and an all over dewy glow that lasts.

the bargain buy 

17 Skin Wow Primer liquid highlighter £5.99 Boots

Personally I find it a bit too full-on to use as a primer, but perfect for spot highlighting, especially on the cheek bones and temples. Dab a little anywhere you want a pearlised glow - a great alternative to high beam and a snip of the price.

for show-stopping glow!

MAC Strobe Cream £10/30ml MAC

Mix a little with foundation for a fake it to make it glow or for added sheen and polish, lightly dab anywhere you want to highlight – cheek bones, brow bones, forehead etc– under foundation for a subtle look or over for amped up glow. And, as the name suggest, this one photographs beautifully.

for a girly glow 

Benefit High Beam £5/5ml Boots 

Super easy to use with the dab-n-go applicator. High Beam has a slightly pinky tint that gives the most pretty pearlised glow. There’s a barely detectable shimmer and an overall frosty finish and it.stays.in.place! The

for a sun-kissed glow

Benefit Sun Beam £19.50/13ml Lookfantastic 

Bronzer and highlighter in one! The stunning warm champagne summer hues are perfect for adding a little depth of colour and the shimmery golden particles add a wham-bam glow. My summer holiday go-to!


What are your favourite liquid highlighters?


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