Tuesday, 30 April 2013

NOTD Butter London Teddy Girl & An Attempt At Some Nail Art

A quick post on one of the shades I mentioned in a recent pink polish post, Butter London's Teddy Girl. I've been really into pink nail colours lately and Teddy Girl, which is a milky, opaque pink has been one of my favourites. 

It's not the easiest of shades to apply and I find it takes three coats of colour to get an even finish. I think it's worth it though, as it's a pretty shade.  

I actually painted my nails with Teddy Girl on Saturday and came across a watercolour nail art post on Makeup Savvy on Sunday, which I decided to try. I'm normally quite rubbish at any sort of nail art, but the tutorial and instructions looked easy enough, so I got out a few more Butter London shades and gave it a go. 

The whole sandwich bag/smooshing process was easy enough, but the end result wasn't quite as pretty as results posted in the tutorial.....

I'm not really sure where I went wrong, but the effect doesn't look half as good the result in the tutorial (it does look a bit better from a distance). Maybe I need to use less polish next time, or practice my smooshing technique? Anyway, although my attempt didn't look quite pretty as I was hoping, I have to say, I'm quite liking the whole watercolour effect, and will definitely be giving it another go/practicing with some different colour combinations.

Also, I just wanted to say that the Clarins Lipstick giveaway is now closed. The winner will chosen using random.org tomorrow, and the original post will be updated with the winners name. Thanks to everyone who entered!

Saturday, 27 April 2013

A Few Favourite Pink Nail Colours

In a recent Spring Shades post, I mentioned how much I've been enjoying pastel colours for nails lately and talked about a few shades in particular that I've been sporting on nails over the past month or so. There's another colour I've loving lately as well though, pink, so I thought I'd do a little post on some favourites/shades that have made an appearance recently. 

Butter London's Primrose Hill Picnic, Rose Insolent and Lolly Pop look quite similar in the nail wheel swatches, but they're all different. Primrose Hill Picnic is a bright, opaque fuchsia creme. Chanel Rose Insolent is a medium, rosy pink. And Lolly Pop is similar to Rose insolent, but is brighter and has a touch of red in it. They're all quite bright, summery pinks, but as soon as the sun makes an appearance, these sorts of colours are the first I reach for.

The softer pinks I've been liking a lot are Butter London's Teddy Girl, which is a milky, opaque pale pink and OPI's Bubble Bath, which is more of a nude with tiny hint of pink. Bubble Bath has actually been a favourite for a while. It's the shade I reach for when I don't fancy colour on my nails, but want them to look clean and fresh. Essie's Vanity Fairest is another favourite, soft pink, too.

All of the swatches above are with two coats of colour apart from Bubble Bath and Teddy Girl. Bubble Bath is quite sheer after two coats, so I normally add a third, and I find application with Teddy Girl to be a bit uneven, so it takes three coats of colour to get a completely even, streak free finish. The three brighter shades all apply perfectly.

So, those are a few of the pink nail colours that I've been reaching for a lot lately. When having a bit of hunt through the collection, I was quite surprised at how many fuchsias and bright rose shades I've actually managed to collect over the past few years and don't think I'll be adding to the stash for a little while. I do have my eye on Chanel's Rose Confidentiel, though which looks like a pretty, medium rose pink with a jelly-like finish - a really lovely colour! 

Are you a fan of pink polish? Any favourite shades?

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Alpha H Micro Cleanse

When it comes to exfoliating, I've sat happily in the chemical exfoliating camp for quite some time. I first discovered the wonders of glycolic acid around 6 years ago when I added Peter Thomas Roth's Acne Clearing gel to my routine and for quite some time after, I paid hardly any attention at all to manual exfoliators/scrubs. That was until I purchased a sampler kit from Alpha H about a year ago, which happened to contain a generous trial sized tube of their Micro Cleanse, and since giving the stuff a go, I've been completely hooked. 

Micro Cleanse is a granulated exfoliant, which is formulated with micro beads and 12% glycolic acid to remove impurities from pores and exfoliate dead skin cells. It also contains cucumber and refreshing mint, which according to Alpha H banish signs of stress and fatigue. Micro Cleanse has been part of my routine for around a year now, and while I'm not sure about the stress and fatigue banishing claims, I can say that this stuff works wonders in the exfoliating department. 

I've been using the scrub which has quite a thick, creamy consistency 2-3 times a week on thoroughly cleansed/clean skin. Alpha H recommend using two to three times a week on normal, combination and oily skin types (mine's combination), and once a week on more sensitive skins. They also recommend mixing with your cleanser if you have a more delicate skin type. You are warned on the back of the tube that a mild tingling sensation may be experienced when using Micro Cleanse, and I have to say, I do get a slight tingle when I use it. It is mild though, and it actually feels quite nice, not uncomfortable or unpleasant. 

The minty scented scrub feels quite cooling and the micro beads, which aren't overly gritty do a fantastic job at removing dead skin cells and smoothing any dry areas that I happen to have going on. After I've finished gently scrubbing, I let the exfoliant sit for a few minutes while the glycolic acid works it's magic and gently remove with a warm, damp muslin cloth. After rinsing off, my skin feels incredibly smooth and clean and whatever serum or moisturiser I decide to stick on after sinks in beautifully. The combination of the micro beads and glycolic acid really do work together amazingly well, and since adding Micro Cleanse to my routine, I've definitely seen an improvement in blocked pores and texture. 

Overall, it's an excellent product that does exactly what it promises without being harsh or drying. I love the instant results I get after a gentle scrubbing session with it and it's a product that I really do look forward to/enjoy using. I'm currently making my way through a mini 30ml tube that I picked up recently with another Alpha H set. When I've finished my current tube though, I will definitely be investing in a full size tube, which costs around £24.00. Not bad really considering you get 100mls of product and a little bit of scrub goes a long way.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Shopping The Stash For Spring Shades

The weather has finally started to warm up here over the past week or so and we've had a few lovely, sunny days, so I've been shopping the stash for Spring shades. I've been sporting Springy pastel colours on my nails for the past month now, but the warmer weather has had me digging out similar Spring like shades for eyes, cheeks and lips, too.

I haven't done a monthly favourites post for a while, so I thought I'd share some of the colours I've dug out of the collection. Some of these are products I've mentioned quite a few times (Vicuna & Jersey Rose), and some are fairly new additions/purchases.

Laura Mercier Sweetheart Lip Glace, Chanel's Jersey Rose & Revlon Peach Parfait Lip Butter

My berry and sheer red lip colours that I've loved so much over the last few months have been swapped for lighter peaches and pinks. Chanel's Jersey Rose, which is a perfect mix of peach and pink has been a shade I've been reaching for a lot, as is Revlon's Peach Parfait. I've also been really liking Laura Mercier's Sweetheart Lip glace, which is a delicate pinky peach that adds a hint of glossy colour to lips.

Chanel Orchid Rose, Diorshow Catwalk Pink, Becca Vicuna Eye Tint & MAC's Yogurt

I've also been favouring peaches and pinks on cheeks lately. Chanel's Orchid Rose and Diorshow Catwalk Pink are a couple of colours I've fished out and have been wearing quite a lot. Orchid Rose is one of those shades that looks a bit drab and boring in the pan, but it adds beautiful hint of peachy colour to cheeks and the shimmer in the shade creates a lovely glow. Catwalk Pink is quite a bright pale pink that actually looks surprisingly natural on - it's quite fresh and creates a lovely, believable flush of colour. 

I'm still completely in love with the NARS And God created the Woman palette I picked up last month and have been reaching for it almost everyday, but I have also been wearing Becca's Vicuna Eye Tint and MAC's Yogurt. Vicuna is a soft champagne shade that adds a hint of subtle colour to lids and creates a lovely base for other shades, and Yogurt is a pretty, matte, pale pink. Both create a lovely wash of natural colour and work well with a variety of different shadows and shades.

Butter London Teddy Girl & Fiver & Leighton Denny Whatever

I've gone a bit mad on the pastel/spring nail colours this year and have been loving the shades I picked up from Butter London's Sweetie Shop collection. Out of the six colours from the collection, Fiver has been the one I've reached for the most. It's a minty green that's fresh, pretty and perfect for Spring. Butters Teddy Girl, which is a white based, pale pink has also been a favourite, and I've been liking Leighton Denny's Whatever a lot, too.

Top-Bottom: Fiver, Whatever & Teddy Girl

Some swatches of the blush colours and Vicuna. Orchid Rose still looks a bit drab swatched on my arm - it's much prettier blended out on the face.

And some swatches of yogurt and the lip colours I've been loving.

Has Spring sprung where you are yet? 
Are there any particular shades you've been reaching for lately?

Saturday, 20 April 2013

A Few April Wishlist Goodies


NARS Ethno Run Duo - I'm actually liking the look of almost all of the pairs/nail polish duos from the NARS Pierre Hardy Nail Polish collection, but the Ethno Run Duo which contains a bright orange creme and a dark navy blue looks particularly appealing. The collector in me loves the idea of the mini shoe box and dust bag these come with, too.

Armani Fluid Sheer No 6 - Armani have recently expanded their Fluid Sheer range and have added 6 new lovely colour options to the existing shade range. I'm currently lusting after no 6, which is a beautiful, translucent coral colour that I reckon would make a pretty, very natural summery blush. Swatches here.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder -I've been eyeing one of these since they started popping up on blogs a few months ago and have been stalking Zuneta and Space NK. I spotted Space NK now have them in stock, so I just need to decide on which option/colour to go with.

Bumble & Bumble Thickening Hairspray - I've been hunting around for a decent product to add volume to my fine, flat hair recently and have come across some really positive reviews for Bumble & Bumble's Thickening Hairspray. I've tried a few different things from the brand over the last few months and have been pleased with all of them, so I'm dying to give this stuff a go.

Clarins Instant Smooth Crystal Lip Balm - I'm a sucker for lipstick/gloss hybrids and have become slightly obsessed with Clarins lip products lately, so these are right up my alley. Clarins claim these give the colour of a lipstick, the transparency of a gloss and the comfort of a balm, which sounds absolutely perfect to me. There are four, pretty shades available, but Crystal Rose is the colour that's caught my eye. 

I hope everyone's having a nice weekend.

Space NK Voucher Code: £10 off of £40 Orders


This popped up in my inbox this morning; Space NK are currently offering £10.00 off when you spend £40.00 with the voucher code discover 14. The code is valid from today and expires on the 25/04/13.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Make Up Storage

I decided to give my makeup storage a bit of a spring clean last weekend and since I absolutely love reading storage posts and having a nose at other peoples storage solutions, I decided to take a few photos and thought I'd do a little post of my own.

Most of my makeup has lived in these two Ikea Fira Mini chests for the past few years. I think these were actually discontinued a couple of years ago, but they've been replaced with these very similar Moppe Boxes. Before I bought them, most of my makeup was scattered around in various different drawers and boxes, so I was looking for something inexpensive to organise and tidy everything up and I have to say, these have worked quite well for me.

They're not the prettiest of storage solutions and I had a few issues getting all of the pieces to fit together snugly (my DIY skills could be to blame), but a good sanding session and a couple of coats of cream paint tidied them up nicely.

The six large and three mini drawers comfortably fit all the products I use on a regular basis. In fact, I was quite surprised at how much these do hold when I emptied them to reorganise. The drawers are quite large and deep enough to fit most of the bottles, compacts and tubs I have. The only thing I haven't managed to fit in is my La Mer powder, which is housed in a ridiculously large jar.

The skincare products I'm currently using live on top of the boxes in a basket. Not the tidiest of solutions, but everything's easy to see and grab when I need it. I tend to forget about things if I hide them away in cupboards and drawers, so the basket works for me.

I used to keep all of my brushes in these square glass vases, which I also picked up from Ikea, but I found the clean ones that I don't reach for often were getting a bit dusty, so I only keep out the brushes I use regularly now. The rest are stored away in a little box.The vase is filled with rice which actually does a pretty good job at keeping them all upright.

I have a bit of a habit of collecting/keeping jars and pots because they're handy for storing random bits and bobs. An old glass candle jar makes a nice little lipstick holder.

And finally, a little photo of the nail polish shelf. I didn't take a picture of the whole thing because I repainted it last weekend and haven't had chance to rehang it yet. As with the skincare products, I tend to forget about things if I stash them away, so having a selection of shades where I can see them works well for me. The shelf doesn't hold all of my nail colours, but it holds a good 40 bottles or so.

So that's how I currently store my make up. The Fira boxes were only supposed to be a temporary solution, but they've ended up working quite well. I'd eventually like to get some sort of dressing table with drawers, but for now the boxes store everything nicely. I think I could do with grabbing a few drawer tidies/dividers for them, though.

How do you store your make up?
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