Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Sleek Ultra Mattes Palette in Dark

It's been a long time since I was truly excited about a Sleek palette. I think the last one that I went out and bought almost straight away was Bad Girl. Sleek recently released two new i-Divine palettes, made up of all matte eyeshadows, a Dark version and a Brights version.  I'd seen these around on the internet and wasn't overly interested, but when I saw the Dark version in Superdrug, I had to pick it up.

Top row
Bottom row

Sleek has made a few minor changes to the packaging, notably the logo and the lack of quilting on the shadows. Personally I like the changes, the logo in particular is nice and simple.

The palette contains twelve shadows. These shadows are very pigmented. I've been impressed by the pigmentation of Sleek shadows in the past, but this beats them all for pigmentation. Some of the lighter shades are a little chalky, but the darker ones are absolutely beautiful. They are lovely to apply, easy to blend and soft. The fallout wasn't too bad either, I think that aspect has definitely improved from the other Sleek palettes. Sleek shadows always last quite long on me, especially over the top of a primer. It's really humid here at the moment and I'd say that even in these conditions they lasted around 6-8 hours or so.

There's a really nice mix of shades too, some that work for more dramatic looks and others for everyday. It's definitely versatile. In particular, I love Villain, Highness and Paper Bag. Noir is a really lovely matte black, which I am always in need of. It's by no means the darkest black, but it's still very nice. I can see me getting a lot of use out of this palette!

As I mentioned in my Au Naturel palette review, I wouldn't recommend travelling with these, a flight to Spain broke the mirror and smashed up some of the shadows in my Original palette. If you do decide to travel with these be very careful! Also remember to check them before you buy them in Superdrug to make sure none of the shadows are broken.

This really isn't the sort of palette that I would expect to be released at this time of year, and I'm so glad they did, it's right up my street. I'm not 100% sure, but I think that these palettes might be part of the permanent collection. Not completely sure though!

This palette retails at £7.00 for 12 shadows. There's been a very slight price increase from £6.49. It's definitely worth it for what you get! You purchase this palette at Superdrug on the Sleek website.

Do you own any Sleek palettes? Are you interested in either of the matte palettes?

Disclosure: I bought this product myself. 

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

My Festival Kit

Since I'm an avid festival goer I thought it might be useful to some of you for me to show you what I usually pack in my bag when I'm heading off for the weekend since festival season is upon us once again. I constantly see magazine articles aimed at 'what to take to festivals' that have obviously been written by somebody that has never been to festival which are always very amusing, but not very realistic. So I thought a little post on what I take and what I find useful might be handy for those of you that are planning to go to a festival for the first time.

I see so many people take lots of irrelevant things to festivals. You need the bare minimum, you will have to cart it back home with you. If you can leave things behind, even better. You have to get everything into one bag, food, sleeping bag, bed roll (if you're taking one), clothes and so on. I'm only covering the cosmetic side of things. It would take me absolutely to cover everything else!

1. Foundation. I usually don't bother packing my concealer with me. Very few people look good in festival conditions anyway, so I don't think it's really necessary unless you are really self concious about your skin. Luckily my foundation is really high coverage so I can skip concealer pretty easily, but my skin is too crazy for me to skin foundation entirely.

2. Eyeshadow. I only take one or two shadows. MAC's Carbon is usually in my bag. A friend of mine brought her Naked palette to Sonisphere! I definitely wouldn't recommend taking something super expensive (or large) to festivals. I'd be too worried about it getting damaged. If you want to take several shadows something like Fashionista's Custom Palette would be very useful as you wouldn't need to pack a mirror, and they're cheap.

3. Batiste dry shampoo. I can't say just how useful this is. If you are planning to take just one beauty item to festivals, this is it. It's a life saver. It also comes in a travel size can. Hair is always a tricky one, I put my dreadlocks in (you can read my post about that here) but I'd recommend taking a couple of bandanna's, or plaiting your hair.

4. Baby wipes. If I could only take one item with me, it would be this. They are essential. Never go anywhere near a festival without them.

5. Eyeliner. I just take a basic black eyeliner. At Sonisphere I took one by Sleek. It's cheap so I wouldn't be too upset if I lost it.

6. Brushes? I only take one brush to apply my eyeshadow, I apply my foundation with my fingers in these circumstances.

7. Perfume I like to take those mini ones that you get in things like Christmas sets. Body spray (in those miniature cans) is always a good idea too.

8. Lip balm. I don't always bother with lipstick at festivals, but taking a lip balm is a good idea.

There's a good chance that I've forgotten a million things that I will remember as soon as I publish this post, but hopefully this is somewhat helpful. I try and take as few things as possible. If you have waterproof products I'd recommend you take those.

Are you heading to any festivals this year? I've booked to go to Download for the day on the Sunday. Camping was just too expensive this year!

Disclosure: All the products featured in this post I bought myself, except the perfume which was given to me by my sister.

Monday, 28 May 2012

NOTD: Barry M Bright Red

The weather is still absolutely beautiful here, so I decided that I'd paint my nails with something a little brighter than what I usually go for. This is Barry M Bright Red.

The weird lines that you can see on my nails is a reflection from the window.

I don't know why, but my camera decided to make the colour look orange. It's not, it's a lovely bright red. Really pretty. The colour is a tiny bit sheer (I used two coats), but it's a perfect colour for summer. I love Barry M polishes. I don't normally go for reds on my nails but this shade is just beautiful.

What colour do you prefer on your nails in summer?

Disclosure: I bought this polish myself.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Shadow Pencil in Morphine

I was given an Urban Decay Shadow Pencil in Delinquent for my birthday, and I decided to get another one to take with me when I go away in August, as they perform so well in hot weather and are waterproof.  This time I went for Morphine. This is going to be a very quick review as I reviewed Delinquent a few months ago.

I chose Morphine as I wanted something a little more subtle but pretty. Morphine is gorgeous blue toned lilac. Really lovely. I don't love the colour as much as I love Delinquent, but I can see me perhaps using this more. This is currently on offer at Debenhams for £12.60, but I went to the in store Jubliee Event (I think it was for the Jubliee, I'm not entirely sure) on Wednesday and we were given £5 off for purchasing a £5 ticket for the event, so I managed to get this for £7.60. 

The pencils around thrice the size of the normal pencils. Morphine applies really well, and is very pigmented. It's very soft and creamy to apply. I will use this as a lid colour because they're difficult to blend, they dry very quickly. It takes hardly no time at all to apply in the morning. 

I bought this because it's also waterproof. I applied this in the morning of yesterday, and it still managed to completely survive the shower in the evening. It's very long lasting and very good for the weather we have at the moment - it's been absolutely boiling here in England these past few days! I try and cut down on the amount of make-up I wear in this sort of heat but with this I don't need to. 

I'd love to get some more shades of these, I think they're fantastic. I have very oily eyelids so normal eyeshadow (even on top of primer) doesn't last very long at all on me in the summer, but with these I can count on them lasting all day.

These pencils cost £14.00 and can be purchased from Debenhams (where they are currently 10% off at £12.60).

A little off topic, but I don't suppose any of you know if the Bourjois Healthy Mix foundation is any good for oily skin or use in hot weather? I'm on the look out for a new foundation to use in the summer, as the ones I have are a little too heavy. Any help would be appreciated!

Do you own any of the shadow pencils? What products do you love in summer?

Disclosure: I bought this product myself. 

Friday, 25 May 2012

My Piercings - My Experience

Before I begin this post, I'd like to say that I'm by no means an expert on this sort of thing. I'm not a piercer, I'm not a professional in any way, and I've learned all the things in this post from experience. I thought it might be useful to some people are are unsure about piercings or are simply curious. I don't have a lot of piercings at all, but some of my experiences with the ones I have may be useful. At the moment, I currently have four piercings in each ear and a labret in the centre of my lip. I'm adding a page break to this post since it's a long one!

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Illamasqua Lipstick in Diablo

This lipstick has been on my wishlist for absolutely ages. I love purple lipsticks, I've been building quite a collection, but this one in particular I was really excited to get hold of, even more so when I realised that they were 10% off at Debenhams. Weirdly, I can't seem to find it on the Illamasqua website, I don't know if it has been discontinued or whether or not it's out of stock, but it's still available at Debenhams.

Apologises for the cut off picture. It was the only decent one that came out. It's much more beautiful than this shows.

This lipstick comes in the usual square plastic casing. I love the packaging with these, and the square shape is so much better. It means it actually stays put when you put it down somewhere.

Diablo is a deep wine red. For some reason, it looks more of a red in my arm and lip swatch. I think it's closer to the colour in the tube than the swatches I posted. It's so beautiful. It's exactly my kind of colour. Some might find it a little too dark for them, but for me I'd be more than happy to wear this everyday. It's nicely pigmented, and it applies really well. I didn't find it to be as drying as other matt lipsticks are, but I'd still recommend applying a balm before hand.

The downside to this lipstick is the cost. It costs £15.50. I bought this with 10% off (and free postage) from Debenhams so it wasn't too bad, but it's not cheap. However, I'm not too bothered by the price since I think it's such a unique colour I know I'm going to get a lot of use out of it.

The wear time on this lipstick is very good. I wore this from around 3pm to 8pm with eating and drinking before it began to fade.

I think that this lipstick may well replace Rebel in terms of my favourite ever lipstick position. Does anybody know if it has been discontinued or not? I sent them a message on Twitter but they never responded. If it is, I'm definitely going to have to buy another one.

This lipstick usually costs £15.50.

What's your go to lipstick? Do you own any by Illamasqua?

Disclaimer: I bought this lipstick myself. 

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Question Wednesday: Pets!

Super quick post today, I have an exam for uni on Friday so I'm spending my days revising. This is another Question Wednesday post from My Mane Blog.

1. How many pets do you have and what are their names?
At the moment I have a little cat called Thomasina. She's a red tabby, and she's 13 two weeks today!  I used to have a bunny when I was small but he sadly passed away a long time ago.

2. Why do you have pets?

I love cats, and she keeps me company. We got Thomasina when I was six, after I literally begged my parents to let me get one! I love her, I can't imagine life without her now! She's part of the family.

3. What is your dream pet?

Thomasina is my dream pet! When I was little I always wanted a ginger cat. I'd love to get another bunny too though, or a kitten to keep Thomasina company.

4. If you could domesticate any wild animal and have it for a pet what would it be?

Probably a red panda, so cute!

5. Let's solve the biggest pet debate: Cats or Dogs?

Cats for sure! I'm massively phobic about dogs. It's really bad. If I know that a house that I have to walk past owns a dog, I'll go out of my way to avoid it just in case, or I'll run past. I'm terrified, and I have been since I was about 2, it's a long story! So it's definitely kitties for me!

My old bunny!

And some baby kitten pictures of Thomasina...

Do you have any pets? Let me know if you've done this post! 

Monday, 14 May 2012

VO5 Miracle Concentrate Elixir with Argan Oil

To say my hair has been in a mess recently is a vast understatement. I don't particularly know why I do this, but every now and then I get an urge to do something completely different with my hair. Last time, I had it cut to a few inches long. This time, I decided to strip out the black colour and dye it brown with bits of purple (the purple did not work properly and thus is none existent). And like the time before, I hate it. Not only do I hate it, but my hair was massively damaged from the bleaching process. The ends were frazzled, and straightening it was even more of a nightmare than usual.

Worse still, I was in a position where I couldn't put another colour over the top until my hair was in a reasonable state, so I've been putting up with brown, patchy, purpleless hair for quite some time. I'd been seeing adverts for and hearing about Argan Oil for quite some time, and decided to have a look at the Boots website on a bit of a whim. The VO5 Argan Oil seemed to be the cheapest option at £5.19 so I went with that one. I don't like to spend a lot of a money on something when I'm completely unsure of how well it will work on my hair. I've had dry hair products that have wrecked my hair in the past - Lush's Trichomania damaged my hair to the point where the ends were breaking off and my hairdresser asked me if I'd been cutting my own hair. So I wasn't exactly feeling confident!

The first thing I noticed about the VO5 Argan Oil is how small it is. You get 50 ml. It also smells lovely, and the applicator is a little pipette.

You apply Argan Oil on damp hair after washing. This is a huge bonus if you don't want to have to leave products on your hair that you then have to wash out. A tiny bit goes a very long way. About six drops from the pipette covered my very thick hair. I'd make sure that your hair is wet when you apply it, too much Argan Oil or if the hair is too dry will make your hair heavy and greasy.

I can't say enough about how much I love this product. My hair is so much softer, the ends are in nowhere near as bad condition as they were, and my hair just feels lovely. I don't think it's as frizzy as it normally is either. I've used it three times so far, my hair normally takes months to get back into good condition. I can see this lasting ages, but I will definitely repurchase once it runs out, I can't believe I've actually found something that works for me! I'm currently trying to get my sister to use it too!

VO5 Argan Oil costs £5.19 for 50ml and can be purchased from Boots.

What's your miracle hair product?

Disclaimer: I bought this product myself.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

GOSH Smokey Eyes Palette in Plum

Remember my Cover FX post where I said that I'd somehow won two giveaways really close to one another? This is my other prize! I was lucky enough to win this from Queen Morsh, so sending a big thank you her way! It's the GOSH Smokey Eyes Palette in Plum.

Managed to get lipstick on my backdrop - eek!
First and foremost, the packaging is so sturdy. I'd feel quite happy to pack this into my suitcase if I was going anywhere, I've had numerous experiences of smashed palettes in the past from travelling, so this is a big bonus for me! It has a magnetic closure doesn't feel secure, but it hasn't popped open on me as of yet!

The packaging is nice and simple, I'm also pleased to see that they haven't included any of these sponge applicators, I usually bin them straight away anyway. It also comes with a cute little guide (I love touches like this even though I don't use them 90% of the time). It doesn't come with a mirror.

This palette comes in 3 shades, black, brown, and plum. Plum is definitely on the softer side and from looking at the images I've seen of the other palettes I'd imagine that the black is more intense. The shades included in this palette are much lighter than I was expecting, but they're nice if you don't want something too dramatic. Some of these could pass for brown shades, I think. The colour payoff is nice too, the pigmentation isn't amazing but it isn't bad either. The fallout is minimal. The darkest shade in the palette is my favourite, it's lovely. The swatch photo doesn't quite show the purple to be as nice as it is.

The lasting time wasn't too bad with these shadows either. I wore these for about five hours or so I'd say. The lighter shades blend into my skintone so it quite hard to tell when fading started to occur!

This palette is lovely if you're looking for something subtle. The shadows themselves are nice, and the price is definitely a bonus a point. At £7.99 for 4 2g shadows it's on the cheaper end of the price scale.

This palette costs £7.99 and is available from Superdrug  I couldn't find a link to the actual product on the Superdrug website.

Disclaimer: I won this palette in a giveaway. 

Saturday, 12 May 2012

MAC Fashion Sets: Rebel

MAC's Rebel has been one of my favourite lipsticks for a good while now (so much so that I even own two of them), so when MAC announced the Fashion Sets, which included a Rebel lipglass and a nail polish, I was very, very excited, and even more so when I saw the images for this collection, which are gorgeous. I love matching things! Other shades included in this collection (in Europe, the shades available will vary depending on where you are) are Myth, Spice, Saint Germain, Morange, Impassioned and Russian Red.

I reviewed the Rebel lipstick quite a long time ago here, along with Cyber, but since that was quite an old post I'll go over it again for reference. I will apologise in advance for my rather used pictures of my lipstick! I already have two on the go so I didn't see the point in buying another one.

Rebel lipstick is a lovely purple red shade. It's quite dark, but light enough (in my opinion) to be wearable. It has a satin finish and lasts around six hours on me before it fades, and it does tend to stain the lips. It's very pigmented and isn't too drying. It may well be my favourite lipstick in my collection!

The lipglass is a berry red with a hint of purple. It's a little more purple and less pink than it shows in my swatch photo, my camera likes to make purple things look pink. It applies unevenly and is a little blotchy, but it's nicely pigmented. It's a little thicker than most lip glosses, but it isn't too sticky. The lips swatch is horrible, for some reason my camera was insistent on making the gloss look all jelly like and weird - it was literally the best one out of a very bad bunch. It was even worse when I attempted to get a picture of the lipstick and gloss together, they were all a odd hazy red colour? It doesn't look anywhere near as thick and jelly-like as that!

Couldn't get this to focus at all - apologises for the blurriness. 
The nail lacquer is deep plum. It was opaque in two coats, but a little streaky (less so by the second coat). It didn't quite live up to the quality of other high end brands such as Illamasqua for me, as I applied it on Tuesday morning and by Wednesday evening it had already begun to chip, but it's still nice, and the colour is pretty and I can see me wearing this quite a lot. The colour in sunlight is quite close to the lipstick, but indoors it is a much darker plum.

I think that if you're planning to wear the lipgloss over the lipstick as opposed to separately you'd get away with wearing a clear gloss. Overall I think the colours in this set are matched up really well, and I love the overall matching effect. However, I wish that MAC had maybe offered the set for a discounted price instead of the same price as buying them all individually. 

The lipstick costs £13.50, the lipglass £13 and the nail lacquer costs £9.

Are you interested in anything from the Fashion Sets? Do you prefer to match things up?

Disclosure: First image taken from MAC website. I bought all of these products myself. 

Sunday, 6 May 2012

My MAC Eyeshadows - Beauty Marked, Parfait Amour, Mystical Mist, Carbon & Copperplate

I've been seeing a lot of collection posts recently, so I thought I'd join in and post my collection of MAC shadows! So far I have Mystical Mist (which was limited edition and no longer avaliable), Parfait Amour, Beauty Marked, Copperplate and Carbon.

(L-R) Carbon, Copperplate, Mystical Mist, Parfait Amour, Beauty Marked. The fact they're not lined up straight is going to irritate me forever. 

Beauty Marked looks absolutely gorgeous in the pan, but the loveliness doesn't quite transfer onto the lid. I find that if I brush it on the glitter falls off, so I dab it with my brush instead to preserve some glitter. It's a deep blackened red. The pigmentation isn't great, and as you can see, I really struggled to even swatch it.

Carbon is just a nice black. I get through quite a bit of black shadow so there's quite a dent in this already. It's very well pigmented and long lasting.

Parfait Amour is a light purple/lilac. The pigmentation isn't great, you have to work to build up the colour. But aside from that it is really pretty on the lids.

Mystical Mist was a limited edition shade. It's a lovely dark purple with  blue undertones. Really lovely, wish it was made permanent!

Copperplate is one of those shadows that doesn't look amazing in the pan but is gorgeous on the lids. It's a grey/brown shade. Really smooth to apply and very pigmented. Beautiful.

At the moment I'd love to pick up both Nocturnelle and Shadowy Lady. They look gorgeous! So far my experience with MAC shadows has been varied. Some of them are amazing, and some of them aren't so great. My favourite is most likely Mystical Mist. The shadows cost £12.00 from the MAC website.

How many MAC shadows do you have? What has been your experience with them?

Disclosure: I bought all of these products myself.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

My Alchemy Gothic Wishlist

Since people seemed to enjoy my post on my Alchemy Gothic collection, I thought I'd do another one to show you all the things I currently have on my seemingly ever growing wishlist. This is necklaces only, there's absolutely tons of things on my wishlist in terms of rings/bracelets, I know I can't buy any since they won't fit me, so I haven't included them.

1. La Fleur de Baudelaire - This one is at the very top of my wishlist, I think it's absolutely gorgeous. It's a tiny bit similar to the Westernra choker, which is my current favourite it in my collection. 

2. Death's-Head Butterfly Choker - I love anything with butterflies on it and this is lovely. It's a relatively new piece, I believe. I love the purple crystal in the middle of the choker too. 

3. Empress Eugenie's Blue Heart Diamond - I don't currently own any blue jewellery, and I think that this one is really intricate and lovely. 

4. The Laidly Wyrm  - This one has been on my wishlist for absolutely ages! I very nearly bought this recently but I bought the Passion necklace instead. It's definitely on my list for next time.

What's on your wishlist at the moment? Have you bought any jewellery recently?

Disclosure: Images from the Alchemy Gothic website

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