Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! (Or Samhain if you prefer). I can't quite believe how quickly this has come around again. It is quite unusually cold here at the moment (it apparently snowed last weekend, and being away I missed it!) and I can't say I envy the kids wandering around outside tonight!

I no longer dress up for Halloween, but I do still like to get involved because I'm a bit of a creature of tradition.  This year I have made tarantula chocolates. I bought the mould I used to make them from Ebay, and it holds 16 of them. I made these with the intent to hand them out to the kids, but considering my Dad has already eaten three of them I don't think that that is likely...

Some of them turned out a little messier than I'd have liked, but as long as they taste good who cares? I actually made them with some super cheap chocolate (it was about 35p a bar) and they are surprisingly delicious! We also have a ton  of bought sweets to hand out too.

I'm going to attempt to steal a lollipop before the kids get to them...
I've also attempted some Halloween nails, but they're really quite mediocre and very basic. I bought some of the Models Own nail art pens yesterday, and this was my first attempt at using them (or using any kind of nail art pens, ever). It's not terrible for a very first attempt! Unfortunately I didn't even try to replicate it on my right hand...

This is using Barry M's Tangerine and Black on the tips, and Models Own nail art pen in Black for the web.

I don't have other plans for tonight except to snuggle down and watch The Nightmare Before Christmas once it all goes quiet. I also need to try and keep Thomasina safe and indoors, which is normally difficult (she seems to know when she isn't allowed to do something and it makes it want to do it all the more).

I hope you all have a wonderful (and safe) Samhain/Halloween!

Are you doing anything to celebrate Halloween?

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Maybelline Colour Tattoo 24 Hour Eyeshadow in Permanent Taupe

This post is another one that has been sat in my draft posts pile for ages. I had very nearly forgotten about it, which is strange because I love this product! I'm getting a bit behind with all my posts at the moment as I'm still getting into the rhythm of things at uni, you'll all have to bear with me for a little while longer while I get myself organised and into a schedule!

I saw this when I was wandering around in Boots a few weeks ago. It's very rare these days that I go and buy something without having read about it or looked it up first, but this was one of those impulse buys where I'd heard of the product before but I hadn't looked into it or had any intentions of buying it. The colour just looked so pretty on the tester, so I bought it. Unfortunately I had to take it back and exchange it for a new one the following day because my jar had a big finger mark in it. This has happened so many times and I still forget to check that the seal isn't broken before I buy products. Anyway, the staff in Boots were really nice about it and I was given a new one.

The packaging is very simple. I love transparent jars, it makes it so much easier to grab in the morning without having to twist open to find out which shade it is. It's very sturdy and easy to screw back on to stop the product from drying out.

Permanent Taupe is an interesting shade. It's a grey toned taupe. It reminds me a lot of MAC's Copperplate eyeshadow (which is one of my favourites). It's not the kind of colour that I'm normally inclined to go for, but  I really like it.

It applies lighter than this on the lid.

The texture initially is quite soft and creamy until it sets. It sets quite quickly which makes it rather difficult to blend, but once it sets it won't budge. It dries to matte finish, which from my experience is quite unusual for a cream shadow. This product is really versatile. I tend to use this mostly as a base, but it also works well on its own, which is great if you don't have much time to spare in the morning.

As for the 24 hour claim, I have not tested it for 24 hours. I don't really need make-up to last me 24 hours as I don't wear make-up for such lengthy periods. However, this does last a very long time. I'd say I reached the ten hour mark before this started to fade and crease. Over primer it lasts even longer. I also found that it reduced the amount of fall out of shadows that I apply over the top dramatically. There's some shadows that I actually avoid using in the morning because they create such a mess, but over this I didn't seem to have a problem with them, which is great!

I've heard of lot of comparisons made between these and MAC's Paint Pots. I've never tried the Paint Pots before so I unfortunately cannot comment on that, but after using this I think I'm less inclined to buy any of the Paint Pots to try - especially with such a big price difference!

This product costs £4.99 and can be purchased from Boots and Superdrug.

Have you tried any of these? What did you think? Also, has anyone tried the Immortal Charcoal one? Is it worth me picking it up to use as a base for black shadow?

*unrelated note* I will be away from early Friday afternoon to Sunday to evening, so will be unable to respond to comments in that time. I'm going to see my Dad's family for the weekend and I normally stay away from the internet when I'm visiting family. I'm really looking forward to seeing everyone and it should be really nice. 

Disclosure: I bought this product myself.

Friday, 19 October 2012

Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Charisma

It feels like it has been a long time since I was really excited about an Illamasqua collection. Naked Strangers really wasn't my sort of thing, but I was really looking forward to the release of Generation Q. I really love the ideas behind Generation Q and the theme of beauty not being limited to a particular age category (my grandmother for one never went out without lipstick on into her 80s). It's a refreshing change to see normal people and people of all ages in advertisements and it definitely sparked my interest. Illamasqua polishes are some of my favourites, so I went and ordered Charisma. I was torn between this one and Creator, but I decided that I didn't really have anything like this one.

Also, the lid is on sideways in all of these pictures...I got a little bit excited when this arrived and twisted off the lid before I took pictures of it and now I can't get it back on straight again!

I love Illamasqua packaging, I think it has a certain degree of elegance to it. It is annoying me slightly that I can't get the lid to line up again, but it's not exactly a major issue and will only irritate you if you are as picky when it comes to how things look as I am.

Charisma is a beautiful deep raspberry pink. It seems more red in some lights and more pink in others. It's a pretty unusual colour. When this arrived and my Mum saw the bottle and said 'Ooh that's pretty! Another one that I can steal from you then!' (she did steal it, yesterday in fact). The colour in the bottle is quite mesmerising and shimmery!

For some reason it's a little more pink on me compared with other swatches I've seen. It also has subtle shimmer to it.  I don't own anything like this, it's one of the more unique colours that I own. It's perfect for Autumn too.

As with all the other Illamasqua polishes I've tried, this applies really well. It is opaque in two coats and I didn't have any issues with streakiness, and it dried smooth. The drying time was really quick. I'd say it took about three minutes or so to dry on me.  It lasted a whole five days before it began to chip, which is an extremely long time for me! I normally find that I have to repaint my nails every other day so this is pretty impressive.

Of course, Illamasqua polishes are a little more on the pricey side, but I do think that it's worth it for the quality.

This polish costs £13.50 and can be purchased from the Illamasqua website.

Have you ordered anything from the Generation Q collection?

Disclosure: I bought this product myself.

Friday, 12 October 2012

MAC Eyeshadow in Nocturnelle

This is yet another post which has been in my draft post pile for ages. I ordered Nocturnelle shortly after my Autumn Wishlist post, as I decided that it was something that I would probably get a lot of use out of, and it was something I'd been waiting to try for quite a long time. I have quite a big collection of purple shadows, but I wanted one that I could wear everyday to uni without it being too dark or too neon.

Nocturnelle is a gorgeous deep pinky purple and has a frost finish. I own a lot of purple shades but I don't own one like this. It isn't too dramatic but it isn't too subtle either. I don't think my pictures show it as accurate as I would like (it seems like I am never happy with my photos doesn't it?!) it's a little darker and less pink than they show. The arm swatch is probably the most accurate.

It applies really well, some MAC shadows that I own haven't been very consistent but this is definitely one of the better ones that I've tried. It applies evenly and the pigmentation is good (although it isn't great). I get minimal fall out with this (if it all). I can apply this at 6:30 in the morning and it will still be going strong when I get home in the late afternoon. I haven't had any issues with staying power whatsoever. In terms of application this might be one of my favourite MAC shadows.

This is definitely one of those versatile shades that I will use nearly everyday. I wear it on it's own on the lid during the day and blend it with a darker purple if I'm going out in the evening. I will be getting a lot of use out of it. It's a perfect shade if you're looking for something that it isn't too dramatic but works for both daytime and the evening.

This eyeshadow costs £12.00 and can be bought from MAC or Debenhams.

What's your favourite everyday eyeshadow?

Disclosure: I bought this product myself.

Monday, 8 October 2012

My Favourite Autumn Lipsticks

Autumn is by far my favourite season. Summer is too hot, Winter is too cold and Spring is just generally one big downpour. I like the feeling of coming home from the cold in autumn, the long dark nights and curling up in bed with the cat (she sleeps inside instead of in her kitty room in winter). While Autumn doesn't make a difference in what I wear (except I tend I wear a lot of heavy coats to keep me warm on my bus journey home from university) I do tend to have a selection of things that I consider to be Autumn-y, and while it is a bit embarrassing to admit, I am quite excited about getting my nice snugly hat and scarf out of my wardrobe (although I will be complaining about being cold in a few weeks and wishing for it to be warmer I can assure you!)

I thought I'd do a quick post on my favourite autumn/winter lipsticks, as that's what I probably change the most at this time of year as I tend to go for darker, deeper shades that I would otherwise sometimes be a bit unsure about wearing in the Summer months. You've probably seen most of these on here before, but I've included new swatches on a few of them as some of them were very old and taken with my old camera. The other swatches were taken from when I reviewed that product. I have had a few of these lipsticks for quite some time now, so they are all very used and aren't looking too attractive!

I am apparently incapable of lining things up in a straight line.

MAC - Cyber

I do tend to lean towards more reds and burgundys in autumn, but this is one of those lipsticks that I only tend to wear in the darker months. Cyber is a very deep dark purple. It's quite a difficult colour to wear as it's such an intense dark colour, but I really like wearing it when I'm out at night in the darker months. I use this over the top of the Velvetella liner, which was unfortunately discontinued. I used to wear it quite a lot when my hair was black, but with my hair being red at the moment I've generally been sticking to more burgundy colours. I'm debating going back to having black hair again, so it might see some use yet!

Miners Cosmetics - Icon

Icon is a wonderful deep berry. It's also one of the more affordable brands that I've featured on this post. I normally wear berry shades in summer, but I think that this is dark enough to class as Autumn, it is much darker than MAC's Rebel for example. It is also very moisturising which is perfect for the colder months!

MAC - Diva

Diva is a perfect burgundy red. If I could choose just one lipstick to wear for the rest of Autumn it would be this one. In my opinion this is the perfect fall colour. It's really beautiful! It is a matte, but it isn't overly drying and actually has quite a soft texture to it. Yet again, my camera doesn't show how lovely this one is. The arm swatch at the bottom is more accurate.

Sleek - Cranberry

This one came out with the Berry Collection last year. It's a very dark red with a hint of brown. It's quite a bit darker than Diva. It is matte and is incredibly drying, so I always apply a balm first with this one! It's a shame because it is such a beautiful colour.

Illamasqua - Diablo

Diablo is still one of my favourite lipsticks in my collection and I'm still hoping they bring it back at some point! It's a beautiful deep wine red and it's perfect for winter. It's another matte, so it is a teeny bit dying, but I think the colour is worth it. It's closer to the colour in the tube than it shows in the lip swatch. The purple in it never comes out very well with my camera. I've been using this sparingly as I will be quite sad when I reach the bottom of the tube! It is still available on the Debenhams website though!

Revlon - Bordeaux

Although this is a gloss and not a lipstick I included it in this post because I think it's a really gorgeous colour for Autumn and it looks lovely layered over some of these lipsticks. In particular I think it looks really nice over Cranberry and stops it from becoming so drying. It looks really pretty in the tube and while it isn't that pigmented on the lips I think it's a really nice subtle shade.

Over Cranberry. I don't know why my camera makes gloss look so weird and fuzzy! 

Cyber, Icon, Diva, Cranberry, Diablo, Bordeaux

What are your favourite Autumn lipsticks?

Disclosure: I bought all of these myself, except for Cranberry which was a Christmas present, and Icon which was given to me by a friend. 

Monday, 1 October 2012

Back to University - A Quick Update

This is just a little update to say that I go back to university tomorrow. As always the first week is always one of the busiest and until I get into a routine I'll be all over the place for a bit. My timetable has also increased this year along with the workload (it actually counts this year, the first year I just had to pass) so I imagine that my free time will shrinking! I have Monday off every week so I will most likely use that to get things done and when I'm not overly busy I will try and get blogging done during the week. I'd say about 70% of my time is spent on transport unfortunately...I'm not looking forward to having to get two buses there and back again (particularly not when said buses cost me nearly £600!) I'm a bit happier this year as I don't have late finishes every day so I don't have to trek home in the dark!

The good news is that I've got all my modules that I wanted. My lecture tomorrow is on Frankenstein which definitely made me a bit more excited! I love studying the Gothic so I'm really looking forward to it. My book list isn't looking too bad will most likely still cost quite a bit unless I fight everybody else for the copies in the library. Fortunately I seem to own most of the texts I need this year. It would seem that my book collecting has finally become an advantage...

I've been meaning to update here for a few days now but I keep forgetting to charge my camera and I just haven't gotten round to it. I am going to try and remember to put them on charge tonight and I might have an hour free in the morning to get things done, so hopefully my draft posts won't end up being forgotten about again! I'm going to have to apologise in advance since it is likely that I will vanish for the next couple of weeks or so, so please bear with me!

I thought I'd end this post with a picture of Thomasina since I haven't spoken about her on here for ages. A few weeks ago I was sorting out my desk and she managed to jump from my desk chair into the top drawer of my desk, then squished herself into the smallest gap imaginable and got stuck down the back of my desk. I had to take the top drawer out to get her out. She was quite happy to sit there though! She has a lot of energy to say that she will be 14 next year!

My desk is a lot tidier now...
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