Sunday, 24 July 2016

Decor Wishlist // Planning for Our New Home

The hubby & I are on the cusp of buying our first home! It's honestly one of the best feelings in the world, and obviously the most exciting part for me is decorating!
Until now, we've lived with parents or in rented property, and neither of the two allow you to fully inject your style & personality into the decor.

I've had 'wishlist' of screen-shots on my phone for the last month or so, and I thought it would make an interesting post to share with you all what I'm lusting over! Most things are quite expensive, but after 7 years of using cheap or handed-down furniture, I've decided that as this is the first home we'll actually own, it's going to be decorated to the highest standard I can muster!

Let me know what you think of my picks in the comments, and of course let me know what you think of them if you already own them!

Luxe Drinks Trolley - Oliver Bonas £350
Rug - IKEA £59

Metal Plant Stand - Trouva £29
Hexagon Table Trio - Oliver Bonas £195
Tivoli Sofa - Swoon Editions £699
Vittsjo Coffee table - IKEA £35
(I'll spray the white parts gold!)
Copper & Wood Shelf - Urban Outfitters £15
Kolton Chair - £399
Silvertipped Sheepskin Rug - Oliver Bonas £60
Ritchie Sofa - £539

Luxe Egg Coffee Table - Oliver Bonas £295
Large Geo Wire Storage Bin - Oliver Bonas £42

Metal Frame Chair - West Elm £699

Cora Mirrors - £99 & £129
Umbra Prisma Mirror - Amazon £75

Becka Rug - Heals £295
Gold Roll Mirror - Graham & Green £225

Dining Table & Benches - £419
Jewellery Stand -  Anthropology £88


Friday, 15 July 2016

Review // NAKED SKIN Lightweight Concealer by Urban Decay

I've seen this new concealer by Urban Decay doing the rounds on a lot of YouTube videos recently, especially from beauty gurus in the US. Everyone was raving about it, so I knew it was going to be a goodie!

Concealer is probably one of the things I am most precious and picky about when it comes to trying new products. I have a very specific criteria, and I'm kinda hard to please! But I have to say that I was in no way disappointed by this little beauty!

If you're a fan of the cult classic that is Collection Lasting Perfect Concealer, then I think you'd love this! It has the amazing staying power with very little creasing and very minimal drying effect. When you're considering a high coverage concealer, you have to expect a little dryness as it sets into place. I think the trick is not to put on too much powder to set it; it does need a little powder to stop creasing, but too much and you're eyes are going to look haggered in no time!

Despite the great coverage and staying power it has, I think the 'lightweight' claim is an accurate description of how it feels on the skin. Some good coverage concealers & foundations can feel so heavy on the skin, but this is a lot more comfortable to wear than the average!

The packaging is beautifully minimal. The tube feels like it's made out of glass and the chrome lid and minimal black text makes it look so chic and rather expensive!

It's a great brightener, as it comes in a really light 'fair' shade. This is, again, something I really need from concealers, as I am very fair skinned. Concealers this bright and light don't come along too often! I'd say the fair shade is even lighter than Collection's Lasting Perfections's lightest shade!

The applicator is PERFECT! It brings out a controlled but more-than-usual amount of product with each dip into the tube. I can do my full face of concealer quite easily with one wand-ful!

All-in-all, I'd say this is well worth it's £17.50 price tag! If you're looking for a good coverage for spots, blemishes & under-eye brightening, then I'd highly recommend this concealer! It is available in 8 fairly neutral shades and is widely available at most department stores like Debenhams & House of Fraser, as well as direct from the Urban Decay website!

Let me know if you have tried, or are thinking of trying, this little beauty in the comments below!

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

TOP 5 // MAC Products

MAC Cosmetics have been every beauty lover's go-to for years now. They have one of the longest standing, most popular reputations among MUAs and amateurs alike, and for good reason (in my opinion)!

It would be fair to say that not every product they release is a hit with everyone - some of them are just downright weird - but they definitely have one of the largest collections of staple products. I wanted to trawl through my supplies and narrow down my favourites to just 5 (which was actually really difficult!) & share with you the products I can't be without from MAC!

LIQUID LIP COLOURS // My Favourite Shade - Lady-Be-Good
I almost feel guilty mentioning this one, as I bashed it a little a few months in a Beauty Haul  video back when I first bought it - I wasn't impressed at all! It felt like it dried out super fast and wore off really patchy. 
In hindsight I can see this is because I'd literally just had my lip fillers done (the day I bought it!) and my lips were dry & not anywhere near the condition they're usually in. I was asking for trouble using a liquid lipstick, really, wasn't I? But I kept trying because it was pretty expensive at £21! I persevered and now I can honestly say I wear this more than any other lip product I have! The colour is a gorgeous nude/peach and it's IDEAL for pale/fair skin, but still looks great when I have a bit of a tan! It lasts a lot longer now that my lips are recovered, and has the perfect full matte coverage in pretty much one application. I can easily get 6 hours wear out of it if I'm not constantly eating during that time! Well done MAC, it's expensive, but worth it!

TRY IT IF:  You want full matte lips in lots of gorgeous colours

+  +  +  +  +

I don't see people raving about this foundation as much as other MAC foundations. I think Studio Fix and Face & Body are more popular, at least on YouTube & in the blogosphere! But I tried this one almost by accident about a year ago, and it's definitely my favourite of the MAC foundation bunch! I think it's consistency is somewhere between Studio Fix & Face and Body, giving a really even medium consistency. Personally I don't find it that build-able, so I only use it on good(ish) skin days. I'd say it's perfect for Dry & Dry Combination skin, and should probably be avoided by anyone with an oilier complexion. I also find it quite a reasonable price at £29!

TRY IT IF: You have dry to combination skin & want a natural, medium-coverage glow!

+ + + + + 

CREMESHEEN // My Favourite Shade - Pure Zen
As you might be able to tell from the tiny amount left in the tube, this is an old favourite of mine! I've had this lipstick for about 18 months now and pretty much wear it every day! The Cremesheen range does exactly what it says on the tin, and provides a really healthy looking sheen and a medium opacity colour, making it a great option for everyday wear. I've tried it in two other darker colours and I didn't think it was as special as Pure Zen. That's probably down to the formula being quite transparent, making darker colours a little patchy and hard to blend into the lips than the nudes and peaches.

TRY IT IF: You like a natural, 'your lips but juicer' look.

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LUSTRE LIPSTICKS // My Favourite Shade - Patisserie
This is, like the cremesheen range, a really wearable everyday lipstick. It's my weekend want-to-make-an-effort-but-can't-be-bothered-to-go-all-out lipstick! It's got a more opaque coverage than the cremesheen colours, but is still very modest and really comfortable on the lips. Patisserie is a gorgeous deep rose that I think everyone would suit, no matter your skin tone.

TRY IT IF: You want a natural-but-glam lip. Perfect to compliment a strong eye look!

+ + + + +

Ah-maz-ing. I love this stuff! I think it's the perfect concealer in so many ways! It has a fantastic coverage for those days where you really need it, but is equally good at sheering out if you want a lighter effect. The NC15 shade is a perfect match for my skin, and is so comfortable to wear. I don't feel like it dries out at all, despite me having a drier than normal skin! It's quite popular in the blogosphere and YouTube beauty world, but unlike some products is really worth the hype!

TRY IT IF: You want and all-purpose concealer to be your best friend no matter how badly your skin behaves! 

+ + + + + 

Thanks for checking out my current favourite MAC products! 
Be sure to tell me your favourites in the comments below! Also, let me know if you've tried any of my favourites, and what you thought about them.


Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Damaged Hair Heroes

I have been abusing my hair a lot lately... sorry hair! In an attempt to lighten my hair for Summer (with minimal devastation) I recently got a full head of highlights! It looks great, and I can't wait to get a few more, but it has definitely taken a toll on my already dry hair. So, to try and bring it back to life I've been trying some new haircare (okay, a  LOT of new haircare...) and I have a few products to share with you that I have really enjoyed using and that have really improved the condition of my hair after attacking it with bleach!

It's worth mentioning that these products impressed me so much that I included them in my June Monthly Favourites video over on my YouTube channel; you can find the video here, or follow the link at the top of the page to go straight to my YouTube Channel itself.

NOTE: My hair type; dry-normal, moderate friz, nightmare in humidity, naturally wavy.

I tried this after it was recommended by Gab Lindley, of YouTube channel Velvetgh0st. She said she had been upset after having a haircut and her hair never feeling like it got to it's old length. She said it takes a while to see length results, which it definitely does, but in the meantime I'm amazed by its repair power! I only use it twice a week but when I do, I can see and feel the effects instantly! Well worth the price! It's around £8 in boots, but is offer on offer for 3 for 2. Make sure to let me know what you think if you try it!

I've been on the hunt for a good cleansing shampoo for a while. Something to make me feel like I've given my hair the best clean possible when I wash it. I've tried a lot of new shampoos over the last 6 months that have left my hair quite soft, but nothing that really felt like I'd stripped all the product off; sometimes I even have to wash my hair up to 3 times before it feel totally clean. But since finding this shampoo (by accident - I didn't realise it was for Men until it arrived!) had totally changed that! My hair feels super clean each time I use this, and actually I feel like I should use it a little less frequently than normal shampoos as it sometimes feels too stripped. But it feels great again when I use a mask afterwards. I think it's because it's a male grooming product that it probably packs a little more punch! 
If you're someone who regularly wears product in your hair, or if you only like to wash your hair once or twice a week, then this is the shampoo for you! I think it was around £5, again from Boots!

I was talked into buying this by my hairdresser the last time I got a trim, and although I love it I am so annoyed I bought it from them (Sherlocks Salons - I think there a few branches in the North East) as it's available so much cheaper on Amazon :'(
Apart from feeling a little bit ripped off, this is a really, really effective repair treatment! I was using this before the bleach and it worked well, but since I got my highlights, it feels like it's having an even better effect. I save this one for the times when my hair feel really dry and damaged, as this is when I see the effects most. It's a little thicker than the other treatments I use and doesn't need as much washing out to ensure no residue is left behind. I'd highly recommend it for curly hair, or frizzy hair!

This is another recommendation from Gab Lindley, Velvetgh0st (yeah, okay, I'm obsessed with her!). She used this last year when she was transitioning from dark brown to grey hair, and swore by it making a massive difference to her hair when it felt damaged. 
Although it's often the last one I'll reach for when I'm washing my hair, it is absolutely amazing as a repair product. It's obviously made especially for bleach damaged hair and makes a real difference in that wash about a week after bleach when your hair feels most like straw! If I use this one I tend to leave it on for at least an hour (maybe that's why I haven't used it as much?) and, honestly, the result is great. The last time I used it I didn't wash my hair for four days, and it still felt silky at the ends even on day 4! If that's not actual magic, I don't know what is...! I think this one is around £9, you guessed it, at Boots!

So, that's it for my 4 best damaged hair heroes! Let me know in the comments below if you've tried any of them before, and what you thought of them! And if you've got any other recommendations, they would be great too!

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