Sunday, 25 November 2012

Review: Natural Collection moisture shine lipstick in Cherry Red

Hey guys!

I was in town the other day and had a cheeky look at the Natural Collection stand in Boots whilst my flatmate was obsessing over Soap and Glory. I spotted this lipstick and swatched it on my hand to find it is the exact colour I was looking for about three months ago - typical huh? At only £1.99 I picked it up and here it is - Cherry Red.

This is Natural Collection. The lipstick cost £1.99. The packaging isn't great but it is a cheap lipstick. You can't expect a glamourous looking lipstick when it costs less than a coffee in Starbucks.

The colour is a dark cherry red. It has a slight blue undertone, more so than Scarlett, so for my skin tone it is great. I attempted to put it on one morning and almost screamed at how dark it was. I swiftly took it off and re-applied by Revlon Balm stain in Lovesick. This is definitely an evening lipstick if you are pale like me.

It is advertised as 'high shine' - which it is. It's not obnoxious. It is probably just the right amount of shine for a lipstick so dark. You could easily apply a gloss over the top to make it more dramatic. It is also supposed to 'gently moisturise the lips'. I'm not too sure about this statement. It is definitely not as drying as some lipsticks I have tried but I wouldn't say it moisturises my lips. However, it is nice to not come home with chapped lips after a night out.

This lipstick seems to run quite a bit on me and it is fairly visible due to the colour. This could easily be fixed with a lipliner and Topshop have one almost identical at the moment for about £7. It would also make the lipstick last longer - although at £1.99, I don't think anyone would mind re-applying.

As a cheap lipstick, this product is fantastic! I do like Natural Collection lipsticks as they are so cheap and the colours are quite trendy compared to some other cheaper collections. They are a fab way to try out a new colour without breaking the bank. The colour of this is gorgeous and can definitely be a staple for this winter season. Unfortunately, I now have about 3 staple winter shades and not enough days in the week to go out and wear them. I might just have to go crazy over Christmas and New Years....

One last note...on my hand it looks very similar to Revlon's 'Cherry Blossom' which I have been pining over for the past month or so. I would love to do a comparison but at £7.50 a lipstick I'm not likely to want to buy it. However, in store they look uber similar - I can't imagine it coming out as dark as this though!

Rachael xxxx

Review: L'oreal Super Liner Perfect Slim in Extreme Black

Hey guys!

I have been in need of a new liquid eyeliner for a while so I splurged a little on this L'oreal liner. Technically it was free due to the 3 for 2 offer - but it usually RRPs at £6.49. I usually get the Collection 2000 Extreme 24 Hour Felt Tip Liner if I am in need of a liquid liner but as I was spending so much on my other two products, I treated myself just a little bit.

I love the felt tip liners because they are so much easier to control than a normal liquid liner. The tips are usually quite a bit larger as well so it is easier to get the dramatic look I prefer much more quickly than with the tiny nib of a liner pot.

This liner has a very slim, long body. It is easy to hold and only slightly bigger than actually holding an eyeliner brush (like that with gel liners). It is super easy to control. The packaging is quite classic, and I wouldn't be at all ashamed to have this in my make up bag.

The felt tip is quite thin, although much bigger than a liquid nib. It is also loaded with liner. The lightest touch onto your eyelid and liner is present on your eyelid. There is no need to put pressure on your eye to get the liner to come out - in fact the lighter the pressure the more control you have! Because of this, it does mean that you have to get the liner right first time. However, you can do it with pencil and cover that in this liner. A point to mention is that whilst it is still wet (for all of 3 seconds) it does come off very easily so it is seriously easy to fix the liner. Just have some make up remover at hand because after it has dried - it is significantly more difficult to remove in comparison to wet.

The liner does dry relatively quickly. After about 5-10 seconds it is completely dry and will not transfer to the top of your eyelid (I have had this trouble with so many liners!). I recommend trying not to blink for at least 5 seconds just to ensure it is dry enough to not transfer.

As I said before, the nib is relatively slim. It is super versatile - creating tiny feline flicks to the giant flicks that would make Amy Winehouse jealous. It just takes time and a steady hand to get whatever look you'd like.

It is very pigmented giving a good, dark black. It is great alone and with a smokey eye. It also wears very well. I have not tried it during the day, but I applied it at 6pm and it was still very wearable at 3 in the morning (and even at half 12 when I woke up!). It definitely has some staying power

Overall, it is a good liquid liner. It's relatively easy to control once you have the hang of it. It applies evenly and easily to leave a very dark, sharp liner. I would probably buy this product again, although I don't often buy liquid liners. However, I don't think you need to spend that much to get a good liquid liner (as I said before about Collection 2000). It obviously has its perks, such as the quick drying time, but you can get liners equally wearable for a third of the price. If you don't mind spending a bit of money on a liner - go for it! If you are on a tight-budget, you might want to look around for a slightly cheaper liner. You don't need to spend this much to get a good one.

Rachael xxxx

Friday, 23 November 2012

Review: Maybelline Falsies Volume Express Mascara

Hey guys!

This is just a quick one but I have a spare ten minutes in between lab work and dying from a god awful cold! I know Maybelline Falsies has been out for ages but I have recently bought it again after a stint with Smashbox's Full Exposure mascara (thank god I ran out). I remember buying the mascara when it first came out and loving it.

The RRP is £7.99 and it is very rare that it is on offer. Luckily, Superdrug have their 3 for 2 offer on so I got three products for £16. I can't really complain about that. Anyway, I love this mascara and keep coming back to it so I thought it really was time I did a review and told everyone how bloody brilliant it is!

The first thing about this mascara is the curved wand. It is still a large applicator but the curve makes it easier to control in my opinion. For example, comparing it with Rimmel's Scandaleyes - half of the mascara was around my eyes from lack of control! I have not had this problem with the application at all with my falsies.

The consistency of the actual mascara is great for me. It is quite runny when it is new, which makes it so easy to put on incredibly quickly. One coat of a fresh bottle will last you all day. After about two weeks or so, the mascara dries out considerably but it is still very usable. It may take slightly longer to apply but I get even less mess when applying it. It takes a lot more layers but in general, the mascara still lasts about two months (for me).

In the plain 'Black' colour, it is very dark. As it is not a smokey black, it looks more natural than perhaps the 'Black Drama' edition of falsies. I find the mascara is very versatile in the fact that if you are pairing it with a smokey eye, it does not look pale in comparison to the rest of the eyeliner/shadow. If it's dark enough for Chanel, it's dark enough for me. (That is a reference to the Chanel eye shadow my flat mate has that I am borrowing way too much. It's such an interesting texture and super pigmented).

Overall, it is a fantastic mascara that I keep coming back to, time and time again. it gives long, full, volumised lashes that do look false - yet natural. It could be improved if the formula could add a little more curve to my eye lashes, but this is fixed with the use of eye-lash curlers before application. This really is a fantastic mascara with great staying power at a reasonable price.

If you are ever stuck on what mascara to get and you want one that will transform your lashes - this is definitely for you!

Rachael xxxx

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Review: Revlon ColourStay 16 Hour Eye Shadow Quad in Siren

Superdrug at the moment are offering a 3 for 2 mix and match on all of their cosmetics. I always take advantage of this offer but by that, I mean spend way too much money in Superdrug. Just a tip, Superdrug give 10% student discount to NUS Extra card holders! Show them those student cards!

Anyway, I seem to have a small obsession with Revlon Products recently. I must have spent about £50 on Revlon products in the past 3 months or so and it’s killing my bank balance. I have had my eye on this palette for a couple of weeks so unfortunately, I did pick it up.

At £7.99, it is not a cheap palette. I have had many more colours for less money, but as it is Revlon, I expected the quality to be better than most. I have various smoky eye palettes from other brands, like Avon, but on a whim, I picked this up. I was going out for dinner in the evening so thought, ‘hey, why not?’

The palette consists for 4 complimentary colours. Top left is a shimmery silver and top right is a shimmery purple/grey. Bottom left is a shimmery taupe and bottom right is a matte black. The matte black has specks of glitter, but they aren’t prominent – especially when the eye shadow is on.

The packaging is okay. You can clearly see each colour through the clear window in the glossy black casing. It is a pretty classic, almost cliché, packaging for eye shadows. I am a fan of the old style Revlon shadow palettes – a long thin strip of each eye shadow. However, I don’t dislike this new style – it’s just different. Each eye shadow is a different size and I assume that this corresponds to the suggested application on the back of the palette.

Swatches ( I apologise for the bad quality, but it really shows how unpigmented these shadows are):

From using the palette a couple of times, I have found that the eye shadows are not very pigmented. They are very shimmery, except the black, and it takes a lot of shadow for a colour to be seen. I found that application was slightly easier with a proper eye shadow brush rather than the foam applicator given. Even with three layers of each shadow, I found it to be a very subtle smoky eye. For some, a subtle smoky eye is exactly what they are looking for and if this is you…go for this! However, I like a very dark, dramatic smoky eye so this palette doesn’t fit the bill. I find it so weak that I could potentially get away with full application during the day. The matte black actually wears as a dark grey - can you imagine how pale the other shadows are?

The colours are very complimentary and blend together well. If you don’t mind taking your time to apply the shadow, you can create a very dramatic look. After putting the shadow on my eyes (and hands when swatching) my skin felt significantly softer.

Unfortunately, I felt like there was quite a bit of fall out with this eye shadow. Because so much is needed to get a serious colour, I feel like I’m losing the same amount of shadow that I’m putting on my eye. It is significantly reduced to other, cheaper palettes but I still was quite disappointed with how much was lost. Again, I can’t stress enough how un-pigmented these shadows are. For the price they were, I expected much darker colours.

Lastly, does the shadow last for 16H? In short, no. I went out for a meal followed by an evening in a club and the eye shadow stayed for the whole evening. When I put it on at 8 in the morning, it lasted all the way till 6pm. However, if I was going to go out in the evening, I would definitely re-apply the shadows. It might only need to be a touch up – but new shadow would need to be added. I hear that when wearing an eye primer the shadow lasts even longer – but I’m not too keen on primers myself so I doubt I’ll try that.

So, overall, the palette is of okay quality. It gives a nice effect but is not pigmented enough for the money that I spent. For some people, £7.99 is not an expensive palette but when I’m living on a student loan I do feel a tad guilty spending that amount of money on one piece of make up. If you want a subtle smoky eye then this is the product for you. If you want something a little darker and more dressy, then don’t be tempted to pick this up.

Rachael xoxo

Monday, 19 November 2012

Update: Birthdays, lab reports and the vampire diaries.

Hey guys!

Again, sorry for my lack of posting. I think I underestimated the amount of work I would be getting this semester. I have had maths tests; lab reports, lab prep, course tests, tutorials and now I need to do my maths coursework! I have been working non-stop for the past 5 days or so I thought I deserved an hour to myself to watch the vampire diaries and do a blog post.

It was my birthday last week! I went home for the weekend to see my family and have a night down Bas Vegas with the gals. I bought a dress from Asos and it was atrocious so I went shopping and bought a new dress in River Island. I also got my cape from Dorothy Perkins (see winter coat fiasco) and I was thoroughly disappointed. It came faulty so I’m sending it right back. What coat did I get in the end I hear you ask? I ended up getting the black tweed and fur coat from Wallis. I feel like a bit of a granny but I can deal with that.

On my actual birthday, I went to ‘a night at Hogwarts’ at the union and if anything it was an utter laugh! I enjoyed being a slytherin for the night. Also, they were selling ‘polyjuice potion’ which consisted of cherry sours, lime vodka and lemonade and it is the best thing! If you ever want to try mixing your own cocktail, try that!

I’m not going to lie, I got some super stuff for my birthday from my friends. Here are just a few bits and bobs:

I got this super cute watch from my flat mates Amber and Valerie. As you know, it was on one of my first wish lists! Man, I'm getting good at making these wish lists come true...

My sister reluctantly gave me this watch for my birthday - she wanted to keep it for herself! I think it is the closest I will get to a Michael Kors watch for a while. The face is rather interesting - it's see-through! It's definitely an interesting detail.

As you can see, my notice board is covered in birthday cards! I really should take them down soon....

This is one of my favourite cards. I don't know why but it's so cute!

I just love this wrapping paper.

As you may, or may not, know, Superdrug have got a 3 for 2 offer on all cosmetics. This is super dangerous for me (see what I did there?) as I think ‘well if I’m buying one £8, I might as well get two more’ even if I don’t need them at all. However, I did spend a good £16 on three products so I will post reviews soon!

Now I'm off to do my maths coursework...wish me luck!

Rachael xxx

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Winter Coat Fiasco!

Hey guys!

As you all know, winter is approaching. Leaves are falling from the trees and campus looks lovely. Unfortunately, it rains a lot in Norwich and this means that on a daily basis I slip on the soaked leaves on the paths and make a fool of myself. Yes, it is daily (although I don't think I needed the leaves. I'm using them as a scapegoat).

It is getting increasingly colder and I am in desperate need of a new coat. I have too many coats at home but I simply do not like them anymore. This means that I am on the hunt like a falcon for a new coat and, in my opinion, finding a good coat is like finding an amazing pair of jeans - physically impossible!

I have been searching the web for the past few weeks and finally have a short list! However, as a student I have minimal money and all the coats I like are not cheap. Luckily, it is my birthday in just two weeks so I may be able to persuade my mother to get me a coat.

So here is the shortlist!

Dorothy Perkins Black Fur Collar Cape: I have wanted a cape for a few years and I think this may just be the year to get one! I am starting to wear 'slightly' heeled boots and I think they would look rather smashing with this black cape. I'm not too sure about the mix of black wool and brown fur but I guess I'll see how it looks. At the moment this is the lead contender so fingers crossed!

Dorothy Perkins Grey dip dye faux fur jacket: I love fur and studs so this fur jacket would go fabulously with about 70% of my wardrobe. Even better, Topshop are selling a jacket pretty much identical for about £20 more! However, it is such a statement piece that it could just make me look like a yeti...I don't know if I can take that risk.

Dorothy Perkins Berry Fur Trim Coat: This season I am loving this style of coat. I have been thinking about buying a red coat for a while and this does tick all the boxes. I feel like I'd look a little bit like one of the Queen's guards but I could work that. Unfortunately, my bag looks like a very similar colour to the coat and that would look awful. Such a shame.

Wallis Black Fur Collar Tweed Coat: This coat is pretty similar to one I loved from Urban Outfitters. It's cheaper than it's counterpart and is probably a better quality. However, the review doesn't shine a good light on it and I'm not sure the fur collar is large enough (I want it at least half way down the coat). It was 30% off a few days ago and now it is full price I am a bit hesitant in buying it. Why do I have to be so indecisive?

Dorothy Perkins Oat fur shawl textured coat: Same style, different colour. It looks gorgeous on the model but there is one problem - it is cream. I am no doubt going to get trapped in rain and will be splashed by a car so the dry cleaning bills will be astronomical! Why couldn't they do this coat in black?!

Dorothy Perkins Oat Fur collar Cape: It is identical to the black cape but in oat. Same problem as before - it'll get filthy! I think I prefer it in this colour but it will not go with as much of my wardrobe.

So these are my winter coat picks for this year. I am about 80% sure I am going to get the black cape at the moment but I am worried about how warm It'll be. Sure, I'll only be walking in between lectures but what if I go on a 10km hike around Norwich Castle? I'm also going to have to stock up on long sleeved t-shirts and jumpers but strangely...I'm not complaining.

Rachael xoxo

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Happy Halloween, oh wait, it's November!

Hey guys!

I have had a crazy couple of weeks. I keep looking at my blog wanting to post but I physically don't have time! I should probably be revising for my maths test on Tuesday right now but I really feel like I should write an update so here it is!

Firstly, Happy Halloween! I have gone out so much this past week. I have never had such a social life. Three Halloween themed nights in 5 days? I think 'how?' and 'why?' are the first questions to pop into my head. I do love Halloween though - we even decorated the flat! I carved a pumpkin for the first time ever and, if I'm honest, I am a natural. Come on, have you ever seen such a cute cat pumpkin?

I have been treating myself recently (perhaps too much). Considering my birthday is in two weeks I shouldn't be spending so much money! Never-the-less, here are a few of my cheeky buys.

Yes, that is a signed Taylor Swift Album. I was going to order the standard version of the album and it was only an extra £1 to buy a signed copy so I went for it. I feel like an obsessed teenage fan right now. However, the album is fantastic and I have listened to it so much in the past week or so. I can even play three quarters of it on guitar (I really should have been doing work).

Sadly, it seems my old calculator is becoming a tad temperamental. Therefore I spent £8.99 on a new scientific calculator. Unfortunately, this excites me way too much than it should do....

I have had my eye on this purse from Zara for about a month and I finally picked it up. At £19.99 it was definitely an investment but I couldn't help myself. I asked for it for my birthday but it had sold out online and we had it in the Norwich store so I treated myself. Of course it is now in stock again. I am seriously tempted to pick up the cream version for spring but I must resist (easier said than done). I'm not too sure on the orange lining but it means I can find everything easily. However, getting cards out of the card holders are not so easy...

Oh, and I'm seeing FUN. live in April now! That is exciting to say the least.

I just think it is crazy to say that I only have 6 weeks left of this semester and we go home for Christmas. Once my birthday has passed I will definitely be counting down the days till christmas. I'm so excited! It'll finally be socially acceptable to sing christmas songs again (although I'll get bored after a couple of weeks I'm sure).

Rachael xoxo