Tuesday, 28 April 2015

15 Gorgeous Compact mirrors

A compact mirror is an essential handbag must have, either for checking that there's no spinach stuck in your teeth or to check that if you need to reapply your lipstick.
Compact mirrors can be so beautiful they could be a work of art themselves. Even vintage ones on Etsy aren't very expensive and won't break the bank! However tempted I am, I've got to resist becoming a collector, otherwise I'll end up on those hoarder programmes with collections so enormous you can't move around the house! Hard core collectors may want to check out the British Compact Society here.
Ranging in price from £1.99 to £35 there's a compact for every price range. The black and silver compact on the last row is designed by Vera Wang for the Wedgewood collection and the Kiss and Tell compact is from Kate Spade. I chose the black flower compact in the top row as it reminded me of Anna Sui and is a bargain at £1.99 on Amazon! The two silver compacts in the third row are vintage designs by Jane Vanroe. They can be bought on Amazon.co.uk via the Vanroe website here. Finally the compacts from Monsoon (Top row left and right, bottom row right corner) are just stunning! My favourites are the silver Art Deco butterfly Vanroe compact (third row) and the gold, silver and white Monsoon compact (top row) Which is your favourite?

Compact mirrors

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

5 Books I'm Looking Forward To Reading In S/S 2015

Royal Wedding Meg Cabot
I have a huge amount of respect for the incredibly talented Meg Cabot, she's written across many genres from children, young adult, chick lit, crime chick lit to steamy novels and she writes them well. I haven't read the princess diaries (in fact the only Meg Cabot books I haven't) having moved into my 20's by then. I have watched the two films starring Julie Andrews and Anne Hathaway which are pretty good. This book sees Mia all grown up, and given the wedding fever over Prince William and Kate, the subject of Royal Weddings are very popular.

For Princess Mia, the past five years since college graduation have been a whirlwind of activity, what with living in New York City, running her new teen community centre, being madly in love, and attending royal engagements.  Mia's gorgeous longtime boyfriend Michael managed to clear both their schedules just long enough for an exotic Caribbean island interlude where he popped the question! But now Mia has a scandal of majestic proportions to contend with: Her grandmother's leaked "fake" wedding plans to the press that could cause even normally calm Michael to become a runaway groom. Worse, a scheming politico is trying to force Mia's father from the throne, all because of a royal secret that could leave Genovia without a monarch. Can Mia prove to everyone - especially herself - that she's not only ready to wed, but ready to rule as well? 
UK release date: 2nd July Pre Order at Amazon here

Finding Audrey (Sophie kinsella)
Although I found the last book she wrote as part of the Shopaholic series disappointing (see my review here) it hasn't put me off reading Kinsella's other books. Finding Audrey seems to be the first book where her main character is a teenager and her first outing in young adult fiction. The main character Audrey suffers from anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders are common, Anxiety UK estimates  that more than 1 in 10 people are likely to have a ‘disabling anxiety disorder’ at some stage in their life. It'll be interesting to see how Kinsella tackles this issue.

Meet Audrey: an ordinary teenage girl with not so ordinary problems.
Aside from her completely crazy and chaotic family, she suffers from an anxiety disorder which makes talking to her brother's hot new best friend a bit of a challenge.
But Audrey has a plan to help her face her fears and take on the world again. First stop: Starbucks.
UK Release date June 4 th 2015 Pre- order here at Amazon.

Go Set A watchman (Harper Lee)
This is a long awaited sequel of 'To Kill A Mockingbird' a book that won many awards including the Pulizer Prize and spent 41 weeks on the best seller list when it was released in 1961. To Kill A Mockingbird tackled racism in the American Deep South and the differing views on justice, with Atticus, a lawyer, seen as a moral hero. The book appears on many school syllabuses aimed at teaching tolerance rather than prejudice. I studied this book at school, watched the film starring Gregory Pick (1962 ) as well as watching the play in the theatre. In Go Set A Watchman Scout is no longer a child, she's grown up and living in New York. When she travels back to Maycomb to see her father she reminisces about the past.

Go Set a Watchman is set during the mid-1950s and features many of the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird some twenty years later. Scout (Jean Louise Finch) has returned to Maycomb from New York to visit her father Atticus. She is forced to grapple with issues both personal and political as she tries to understand both her father’s attitude toward society, and her own feelings about the place where she was born and spent her childhood. An instant classic.
Uk release date July 14 2015 Pre-order here at Amazon.

Always the Bridesmaid (Lindsey Kelk)
Lindsey Kelk's writes in a entertaining and carefree way. Her books seem to involve a lot of drinking, hilarious escapades, trips abroad and the odd swear word. The opening of  her first published book 'I heart New York' begins with a wedding and she returns to this theme, but from three different women's perspectives. If this is like her other books it will be a humorous, light-hearted, easy read and it's released just in time for at the wedding season in May.

Everyone loves a bridesmaid - except Maddie, who’s perpetually asked to be one.
Everyone loves a wedding - except Maddie’s best friend, who’s getting divorced.
And everyone loves the way Maddie’s so happy behind the scenes - except Maddie herself.
One best friend is in wedding countdown while the other heads for marriage meltdown. And as Maddie juggles her best chance at promotion in years with bridezilla texts and late-night counselling sessions, she starts to wonder – is it time to stop being the bridesmaid?
Uk release date may 7th Pre-order here at Amazon

The Good Girls (Sara Shepard)
The recurring theme in Shepard's books seem to be exposing the dark secrets behind perfect, rich and attractive girls whose lives aren't really as perfect as they seem. She does write to a set formula: throw in rich girls, bullying & blackmail and don't forget the twins! Despite this I love these plots and they always seem to be addictive. This is the second instalment in the Perfectionists series, see the review of the first here.

They're good girls...but no one's perfect...Mackenzie, Ava, Julie, Parker and Caitlin are five senior high-school girls who seem to have it all. Top grades, beautiful looks, music scholarships, sports captaincies...even the boys of their dreams. But there's just one small flaw in their apparently perfect facade. They're wanted for a murder they didn't commit. Sure, they talked about killing rich bully Nolan Hotchkiss, but they didn't go through with it. It's just a coincidence that Nolan died in exactly the way they planned...right? Except Nolan wasn't the only one they fantasised about hurting in film class that day. And now someone seems to have found their list, and is carrying out their very particular revenges in their name. Who is really behind these killings? Who can they truly trust? And who will be the next to die?
Uk release date July 2nd Pre-order here on Amazon

Monday, 13 April 2015

Beauty Wishlist

1. Kiko Hightlighter Kiko £4.90
This is a budget version of Guerlain Meteorites, giving a healthy glow to the face and I can't wait to try it!

2.Too Faced Semi Sweet Chocolate Bar Amazon £38.58
This palette is taking it's sweet damn time to be released in the UK. Currently it is only found on Amazon and hasn't hit the stores yet.

3. Lovesick Stack Melt Cosmetics $48
I love the concept of this, these are magnetic eye shadows that can be stacked on top of each other and there are two colour ranges, this is Lovesick (which has a golden pink colour similar to Mac's Rubenesque paint pot) and Dark Matter which is darker and currently sold out. They are vegan and offer international shipping.

4. OCC Moderncraft Lip Tar in Black Metal Dahlia & Roleplay Cocktail Cosmetics £13
These have been on my wishlist for some time and I love the colours, but I heard they have a minty tatse which sometimes give me asthma attacks so I have to be careful.

5. TheBalm Mary Lou Manizer Feel unique sale £15.75
This is like a cult classic and so many people recommend this I feel I have to try it and I don't own anything from TheBalm yet.

6. Zoya Matte Velvet in Posh Nails Direct £8.95
This is a lovely matte red and it looks very sophisticated on the nails. 

7. Physician's Formula Bronzers in New York & Paris ebay here £8.55 excluding postage
These are just so gorgeous! I love the detail in the Paris Palette but I don't know if i'd be too scared to use them and ruin the beautiful picture! Unfortunately Physicians formula isn't properly available in the UK (although a few random items pop up in TK Maxx now and again) so this is only available on ebay.

8. Viserat Palette Neutral Mattes Eye Shadow Palette love-makeup £58.50
I heard about this on instagram from someone who really rated Viserat although they had a different palette, I love these neutral colours although some of the colours in this palette does look similar to those in Too Faced Semi Sweet.

9. Maybelline Color Drama Lip in Red Essentials Boots £4.99 
I have this in Minimalist and I can't wait to try this in red, especially as this is a dupe for Nars Cruella.

Friday, 10 April 2015

Save Money: 6 Dupes for High End Products

Guerlain's Les Meteorites pearls are a cult product, finely milled they give a very subtle glow to the skin and more recently they have been available in a convenient, travel friendly, compact form. The refill price though expensive it what I'd expect from such a high end brand but the compact is a whopping £97.20! (from Escentual. In house of Fraser it's around £108!) That means you're paying  £62.70 for the packaging alone! That will buy you another Guerlain product or two or possibly most of Make Up Revolution's entire stock! Kiko offers a budget friendly alternative, with a mixture of  matte and shimmery shades of violet, green and pink that can be swirled together for a champagne coloured sheen. I understand that the Guerlain compact is actually more shimmery than the original Meteorite pearls and from swatches here and here I'd say Kiko's version is more similar to the Meteorite pearls (£37.50) giving a subtle glow.

Despite it's name the Max Factor blush is actually a powder not a cream. The Max Factor Creme Puff Blush in Nude Mauve seems to have the same lasting power as Hourglass Mood Exposure blush and the shades are very similar which you can see in a post by Gemma from Beauty Nook here. The differences are that Max Factor has less product than Hourglass and is also less expensive.
I really liked Benefit's new Rollerlash mascara (you can see the review here) but £19.50 is an expensive price tag. However money savvy beauty lovers have sussed out not one, but two dupes. The first is Maybelline's Lash Sensational Mascara which is the cheapest dupe. They share a similar curved wand (although Maybelline isn't as skinny as the Benefit wand) and you can see just how alike the results are in Elle Sees Blog post here. The second dupe is Max Factor Masterpiece Transform Mascara despite the wand looking completely different the results are very similar which you can see for yourselves in a post by Make Up Monster here.

Although Claire's Valentine Hearts nail polish isn't an exact dupe for Nails Inc Alexa Hearts, they are similar each having red hearts inside which I couldn't find anywhere else. La Femme also do a range of  polish with gold, silver and turquoise hearts in them which you can find here for 99p.

These Maybelline color drama lip pencils are much raved about Nars Velvet Matte lip pencil dupes. Maybelline lip pencils are good quality but significantly cheaper than Nars. Maybelline's Red Essential is thought to be a Nars Cruella dupe and you can see in this post by Make Up Over Mind here that they are very similar in colour. They are great in pigment and texture-wise comfortable to wear and leave a stain. Maybelline's Fab Orange is supposed to be a dupe of Nars Red Square. You can see the swatches on my pintrest beauty board.

Nars Radiant Creamy concealer is often recommended as a good concealer for under the eye. Maybelline Fit Me concealer is it's high street counterpart. The differences are that Nars offers more coverage with less product, while Maybelline needs to be built up, but both give medium coverage. Maybelline dries slower than Nars meaning you have more time to blend. The consistency differs as Nars is creamier than Maybelline. Nars does give you more product at 15ml while Maybelline has 6.8g but is still worth trying out.   

Monday, 6 April 2015

Four Spring Lip Picks

Revlon Super lustrous Lip gloss in 21 Pink Crystals
This gives a nice peach gloss to the lips, despite the name being Pink. It also has gold glitter running through it but this isn't noticeable on the lips. It is quite sticky though so be warned! This is one of my Finish 5 by cinco items and you can find a more in depth review here.

Bourjois 3D Effect Lip gloss in 46 Rose Lyric
This is a long time favourite of mine, mainly because it tastes like Love Heart Sweets rather than of vanilla and mint. It's also only the tiniest bit sticky. There are tiny particles of glitter to enhance the glossiness or the '3D Effect.' The glitter isn't noticeable on the lips however, which is good.

Revlon Lip Butter in 050 Berry Smoothie
This is pretty much my go-to shade because it suits most make up looks. It's a reddish pink. It's also comfortable and moisturising to wear. I love the lip butters they are both sheer like a tinted lip balm and pigmented like a lipstick at the same time, though they are not know for being long lasting. This tastes and smells like vanilla but it's fairly subtle.

Clinque Chubby Stick in 06 Woppin Watermelon
This is moisturising, comfortable to wear and the light pink colour is subtle, being like a tinted lip Balm. It is the perfect texture being neither sticky, tacky or waxy. It also doesn't have a taste or smell which is great for those with allergies. It automatically twists up as well. For the full review and lip swatches see here.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Cinco de Mayo 10 week update

It's time for my April update Finish 5 by Cinco De Mayo Challenge.
The Finish 5 by Cinco De Mayo is a challenge started by Megan +megsmakeup8. The challenge involves choosing 5 products to finish by May 5th 2015. You can see the first post on this here. and the March update here. I started the challenge on January 21st 2015 (two weeks later than the official start on January 5th.)

 All 5 Items- 5 by Cinco De Mayo Start (March 4th  2015)
The Biggest difference is in the foundation, there's also a slight change in the gold eye shadow pan in the No.7 palette. I think I was being over optimistic about the products I chose, especially since I don't wear make up every day. I think if I were to do this again, I would pick sample sized products.

April 5th 2015

Sleek Oil Free Creme to powder Foundation
I've been using other ways of applying this and found that Real Techniques Precision sponge gives flawless coverage that can be easily built up (the expert face brush can leave brush strokes) but it also uses more product.

Elf  Cream Blush and Contour Palette
Elf blush is better than I expected but does fade towards the end of the day. There's also a generous amount which means it's difficult to hit pan and finish.

Revlon Lip gloss in Pink Crystals
I don't know why they have pink in the name as it's actually a peach tone- perfect for spring. It is sticky but also super shiny too. I've used this a few times although you can't see any difference. I should really keep this on me at all times for a top up. It doesn't help that I'm more of a lipstick fan now.
No. 7 palette
At last you can see a difference in the pan! I don't think I'll be able to use it up by May though, this seems to be a never ending eye shadow. I've given up on the pink shadow in the hopes of concentrating on the gold.

No 7 Cream Eye shadow in Fudge
. I haven't taken a before and after picture because of the colour of the tube means you won't see any difference. I've only used this a few times.

So that's the 10 week/ 3 months update. Have any of you attempted any Make Up Challenges- such as project pan or 5 by Cinco, 5 by Fall etc? Let me know in the comments-I'd love to know how you did and what it was like.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Models Own Speckled Polish Review and Swatches

As spring is here and it's nearing Easter, it's time to get my Models Own Speckled Egg Collection nail polishes out of the drawer- yay! There are five in this collection each named after a particular bird: Dove Pink, Goose Yellow, Magpie Green, Duck Blue and Swan lilac. The colour displayed on the website and the actual colour in the bottle is accurate so there shouldn't be any problems ordering online. I swatched Duck Blue last spring which you can see in this post here. I bought Swan Lilac and Magpie Green last spring but this is the first time I've used them. 

Swan Lilac is very thin and runny, and needs 3 coats to be opaque for a non patchy finish. Normally I wouldn't have the patience for anything above a 2 coater nail polish but because it's a special effect polish and the fact that the speckled effect is pretty forgiving in terms of brush strokes and streaks, I can put up with it. One coat of Swan Lilac gives a sheer paint splattered effect which also looks good. This shade can look almost blue sometimes because it's not a purple but a softer lilac shade.

Magpie Green is also a runny consistency but only 2 coats are needed for an opaque finish. I think thin coats are better to keep the finish looking even. I think I love this colour the best.

I used Bourjois So Perfect base correctrice coat which has been fairly good at protecting my nails from stains, dries really fast and I love the long wide brush that coats the nail in one swipe. After that I applied two coats of Model's Own Speckled egg and then Butter London's PD Quick Top Coat which is really glossy, quick drying and 3 free. After three days I haven't had a chip so far even though I've been typing and washing my hands a lot. These Speckled polishes do take a tiny bit more effort to remove with nail polish remover because the speckles contain glitter particles (although you can't see this in the polish at all.)  

Despite their consistency I love these speckled polishes as they are so unusual, with a twist on traditional pastel colours and just perfect for spring. The Speckled Egg collection is available on the Model's Own Website retailing at £4.99. But Superdrug is currently having a buy one get the second half price many Model's Own Nail polishes here

The only Models Own polishes I've tried are from this collection, what other polishes do you reckon I should try from Models Own?  Let me know in the comments below and tell me what  your favourite nail polish brand is too! 
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