I’ve been a bit slack on blogging lately but what better way to get back in the swing of things than with a giveaway! The lovely people over at The Sunglasses Shop have offered one lucky reader the chance to win a pair of Rayban sunglasses worth up to £120. I personally love Raybans as they’re a classic fashion accessory and give a lil bit movie star glam when paired with a red lipstick.
This giveaway is open worldwide – all you need to do is pop you details into the rafflecopter form below and make sure you follow the necessary requirements as I will be checking every entry.
Bit of a dramatic title – its sounds like we’re trying to survive the apocalypse!However, in all seriousness, for a beauty/shopping lover trying to curb you’re spending is hard work!As I’ve recently made the switch to working from home, I’m really having to take a long hard look at my outgoings and try to make cuts. For now, beauty splurges and buying random crap are officially on the back burner!I’ve never done a spending ban before. I usually stick to a budget but I have managed to do better than expected. Here’s a few things I’ve found that’s really helped:
* Avoid going into shops where you usually spend money
I’m still going shopping as I need to buy essentials, such as food and other necessities. I’ve managed to avoid places like Boots and Superdrug – places where I’m likely to cave in. If I start browsing makeup stands I will easily break.
* Don’t open emails from retailers
I’ve had so many emails with offers from Look Fantastic, Feel Unique etc. I’ve deleted every one so far as I know I’ll be really tempted if I open them and see an amazing offer. If you’re on a spending ban and think you might be tempted by emails, you could always unsubscribe for the time being.
* Avoid money saving websites
I normally stalk moneysavingexpert and HDUK to find all the best online bargains but I’ve been avoiding them for the past few weeks. I’ve taken them off my favourites bar for now as I know how tempting spotting an amazing steal can be.
* Allow yourself a treat
OK its cheating but letting yourself have one small treat in the middle of a spending ban just makes it so much easier.
* Make the most of what you already have
I have a few products that I completely forgot I owned, so using them again has sort of made up for the lack of new things. I also think swapping products/clothes with friends is also a great idea for when you’re on ban – its a great way of trying new things for free!
* Start saving towards a product/purchase
I’m currently thinking about buying a new winter coat so any spare pennies are being put to one side. Its actually quite satisfying saving up for something rather than just splashing out on a whim.
Do you have any tips for a spending ban?…
Its taken a few years but I’ve finally filled a MAC palette. At £10 a pop these aren’t exactly the cheapest shadows on the market. I mean £150 for an eyeshadow palette (plus the cost of buying the palette to hold them in) is an insane amount of money. However, I’ve managed to pick most of these up either in blog sales/during debenhams promotions/with my debs reward points and from birthday/Xmas gifts. I still have the old style palette, I know they’ve updated them since. I think you have to buy the insert separately now? so more expense basically! I generally find MAC shadows to have good pigmentation. The matte shadows tend to be on the drier side but still have good pigmentation and are long wearing. Below, I have a little rundown of the shades I own, the ones I consider to be must haves and some known dupes.
From left to right:
Shroom – a light beige with shimmer (satin finish) – soft, smooth & pigmented. The swatch doesn’t do it justice. A must have neutral. Known dupes: wet n wild walking on eggshells palette (lightest shade), makeup geek shimma shimma, milani classic beige.
Brule – creamy beige (satin finish) – soft, smooth & pigmented but slightly on the powdery side. Known dupes: milani almondine, wet n wild brulee, urban decay foxy.
Yoghurt – soft pale pink (matte finish) – slightly dry but well pigmented. Known dupe: wet n wild lust palette (light pink shade).
Malt – neutral beige (matte finish) – slightly dry but good pigmentation. Know dupes: wet n wild lust palette, milani french vanilla.
Satin Taupe – cool toned mauve taupe brown (frost finish) – soft, smooth & pigmented. A must have. Know dupes: wet n wild nutty, inglot 402 pearl, nyx iced mocha.
All That Glitters – soft beige with gold pearl (veluxe pearl finish) – soft, smooth, pigmented. A must have. Know dupes: urban decay sidecar, nyx champagne, cover girl mink.
Era – soft golden beige (satin finish) – buttery smooth, soft, pigmented. Very underrated & a must have neutral. Known dupes: chanel fauvre.
Espresso – muted gold brown (matte finish) – slightly dry but pigmented. Known dupes: bobbi brown chocolate, sleek storm palette (matte brown shade), body shop brow/liner kit in brown.
Bronze – bronze (frost finish) – soft, smooth, pigmented. Know dupes: nyx deep bronze.
Fig 1 – true purple (matte finish) – slightly dry but pigmented, though not as much as other shades. Know dupes: wet n wild lust palette.
From left to right:
Sumptuous Olive – olive green with gold pearl (veluxe pearl finish) – soft, smooth & pigmented. Known dupes: milani antiqued gold, inglot 433 pearl, nyx herb.
Greensmoke – greyish green (lustre finish) – I think mine has turned into a dud over time as it now feels really dry with a lack of pigmentation. I’ve had mine a while but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t like this when I first bought it. Known dupes: maybelline mad for mauve palette (green shade).
Steamy – blue green with gold pearl (frost finish) – smooth, soft & pigmented. Known dupes: nyx jungle fever, milani clover.
Deep Truth – true metallic blue (frost finish) – smooth, soft & pigmented. Known dupes: nyx atlantic, milani blue my mind, inglot 428.
Contrast – dark navy blue with blue pearl (velvet finish) – slightly dry but good pigmentation. Known dupes: nyx morocco, nyx lake moss trio.
My favourites from these are satin taupe, shroom and era, though I do enjoy using the matte finishes as I find them really long wearing. The only bad shade in these is greensmoke but I’m not sure if its because I’ve had it a while. I probably need to repurchase as I’m sure it was better quality when I first purchased it. Overall, MAC shadows are good quality, though some are better than others. I still have quite a few more shades on my wishlist. What are your favourite MAC shadows?
Hair products and I have had a very love/hate relationship over the years. There’s only a few hair products that have really wowed me. Having oily roots and dry ends is a tough task to manage and a few years ago, I would have never entertained the thought of using a hair oil but these days, its a different story.
I guess you could say I’ve been converted. OK, I’ve only ever used two hair oils (the above and macadamia) but both of them get the thumbs up, though I think this one may just have the edge. Orofluido Hair Elixir c/o Hairtrade £11.89 contains three organic natural oils – argan, cyperus and linseed, which aim to strengthen, smooth and add shine. You can use this on both dry and wet hair. On wet hair, it aims to reduce drying time, add body and movement and make hair easier to comb. I’ve been using the oil on both damp and dry hair – usually I’ll put a small amount on before styling and add a little more when its fully dry. I find it works well used either way – my hair has a bit more movement to it and it gives my hair more shine when dry.
The texture is really thick so less really is more with this stuff. However, it feels really lightweight once applied – it doesn’t leave any residue at all, its pretty undetectable. A major plus point is the delicious scent. It literally smells like a MAC lipstick, which is all good if you’re a vanilla lover!
I’ve been using this oil for weeks and I’ve really noticed a difference in my hair condition. My hair feels much smoother, sleeker and overall healthier, whilst the ends are less dry. My hair is just so much more manageable *does happy dance*. If you’re a fan of hair oils, then this is definitely one to consider!…
Glowing skin is something I rarely achieve without a bit of help. Using a good highlighter really perks up my skin and adds that little something extra to my makeup.
I’ve found some great highlighters at both ends of the price spectrum. Today I’m sharing my the majority of my collection.
E.L.F BAKED BLUSH – PINKTASTIC £3.95
This is meant to be a blush but on my pale skin, its far better as a highlighter. Its a pale pink highlighter with subtle gold tones and its meant to be a good dupe of MAC’s MSF in soft and gentle. The texture is soft, smooth and pigmented and it wears for around 7-8 hours on the skin before fading. Really nice for adding a subtle glow on cheeks and under eyebrows.REVLON HIGHLIGHTING PALETTE – ROSE GLOW £8.99
On the outside, it looks similar to one of Bobbi Browns shimmer bricks – on the inside this is billed as a mix of blush and highlighter. Rose Glow is a mixture of five complimentary shades of pink, champagne and beige, which combined makes a pretty light pink shade. The texture is powdery and theres a lot of shimmer in here so its one probably better used in the evening.
BEAUTY UK BAKED BLUSHER – HALO £3.99
Like the ELF product, whilst this is billed as a blush, its far more suitable as a highlighter. Its a very light pink champagne shimmery highlighter that looks stunning when applied to the face. Again I’ve read its meant to be a dupe of MAC’s MSF in soft and gentle and its similar to the E.L.F blush so you don’t really need both. For £3.99, you really cant go wrong with this product – its highly pigmented and smooth, without being too powdery. I can imagine it would suit a range of skin tones too!
The E.L.F swatch is slight blurry – blogger problems!You can see a better swatch is this post.
KEVYN AUCOIN CELESTIAL POWDER- CANDLELIGHT £35
Typically, my most expensive highlighter is my favourite. This is just such a subtle powder that it adds a beautiful luminosity to the skin. Its a golden apricot powder that gives a soft focus finish. It kicks up a bit of powder in the pan so I prefer to apply it with a different brush to the compact (you don’t get a brush with it anymore but I recommend a fan brush to apply). Perfection.
BARE MINERALS FACE POWDER – TRUE RADIANCE
A quick mention for this powder as you cant seem to buy it anymore. I’ve had this a while and I’m not sure if it came as part of a kit but its still a product I use from time to time. True Radiance is a pinky brown powder that adds a little bronze and radiance in one. I only use a tiny amount as it can look too obvious on my pale skin if I apply too much. You can get different coloured versions of this powder and its definitely one to look at if you don’t mind loose powder products.
MAC EXTRA DIMENSION SKIN FINISH – SUPERB
This is another product you can get hold of at the moment – well unless you give ebay a try but I wanted to mention it as its one of my favourites and MAC have released this a few times since I purchased mine so no doubt it will show up again at some point. This is a highly pigmented champagne/peach metallic highlighter, similar to Estee Lauders Gelees Illuminating powders. Definitely one to pick up if its re-released!
BECCA SHIMMERING SKIN PERFECTOR – OPAL £33
Probably my least used highlighter as I only have a mini sample and I think this is possibly too warm for my skin tone but its a water based liquid highlighter in a warm gold shade. It gives a gorgeous glow and can be mixed with foundation, moisturiser or used alone.
MAC STROBE CREAM £22.50
A brightening cream that helps revive tired looking skin. This can be used under makeup or mixed with foundation. I love mixing this with a powder concealer and using under my eyes as its really helps conceal and brighten my dark undereye circles. It adds a really gorgeous glow to the skin and perks it up for a naturally radiant look.
Look what I’ve just spotted!new real techniques brushes. I actually found these on amazon though they’re not available to buy yet so I’m guessing in the next few weeks they’ll be able to purchase. From left to right;
1. Real Techniques Retractable Bronzer Brush – £12.99
Expertly blend bronzer or finishing powder. Load up the brush, pop the lid on and go!
2. Real Techniques Retractable Kabuki Brush – £11.99
Evenly apply powder, blush or bronzer. Load up the brush, pop the lid on and go!
3. Real Techniques Silicone Liner Brush – £5.99
High tech silicone tip for effortless enhanced eyes. The ultimate tool for smooth,precise application of liquid or cream liner.
4. Real Techniques Retractable Lip Brush – £6.99
Ultra-firm tapered tip applies colour smoothly and expertly lines the lips for added definition.…
I’ve had my eye on Sleeks Vintage Romance palette ever since I saw the pre-release information about it. Everything about the palette drew me in – the shades, names and of course, the affordable price point.
The palette contains rich shades of bronze, berries and purples. All shades are incredibly soft, smooth and pigmented.
I like all shades in this palette which is rare, usually theres one or two I’m never keen on. The only shade here that I found a little powdery was propose in prague – a matte brown but I do find that Sleeks matte shadows tend to lean that way. This is a great palette for autumn/winter and perfect for creating a dark smokey eye. For £7.99 its a perfect buy!I got mine from Sleek online but it should be instore at Superdrug too (its not yet online)…
Here are a few photos from MAC’s Christmas 2013 collection entitled Divine Night!
As yet there is no official colour story but the Christmas collection will feature mini sets as well as a colour collection.
The mini sets include lip glosses, lip balms, pigments and glitters.
A gold eye palette in limited edition packaging includes five shades, two other makeup sets includes 3 shadows, powder/blush, 2 lipstick shades and a pencil.
Big Dolls Eye Set features In Extreme Dimension Lash 3D mascara, blacktrack fluidline, two further products and makeup bag.
The Beauty Lips Set features a lipstick, gloss, lip pencil and cosmetic bag.
Finally three makeup brush sets include the Mineralize Brush Set with 4 brushes – 187, 286, 159, 287
Smokey Eye Brush Set with five brushes – 219, 266, 227, 214, 211
Brush Essential Set with five brushes – 212, 239, 217, 193, 168
The Divine Night Collection will be released in October for US and November for international…
Its been a long time since I was this (think mega) excited about a MAC collection. I usually love initial pictures then my interest fades away once I’ve seen swatches and reviews. However, I’m really hoping that this is going to be a gem of a collection. If its grabbed your interest then I’ve found some images to wet your appetite.
*I posted some initial images here*