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Wednesday 26 December 2012

Makeup | Christmas

Christmas day is always such an exciting day to do my makeup, I feel like I have to use every piece of makeup I got that day! I also got the Real Techniques Core Collection brushes which I was so excited about! So far I'm really liking them and I used them to create this look. 
I thought I would make a quick little post showing what makeup I was wearing this Christmas. 

Stila Angel Whitening Powder in Shade B
Bloom Cosmetics Mineral Blusher in Rosie
Benefit Sha La Lovely brown eye shadow (for my brows)
Benefit She's So Jet Set Makeup Kit - They're Real mascara and Champagne please, Pretty in mink & Elegant espresso eyeshadows

As you can see I went for neutral eye shadows and nude lip with big lashes. I decided to wear a pair of Eylure Naturalite Lashes in Super Full 100. I only ever wear lashes on special occasions, and of course, this day was! I loved the length of these ones and they made my lashes look so much fuller. These lashes do come with an adhesive, which is okay but obviously not the best. They lasted a good amount of time and I think they really made my makeup look complete.

Hope you had a lovely Christmas!

Monday 24 December 2012

Merry Christmas ♥

Hello my lovely readers
This is a little post to wish you a very merry Christmas and a happy new year!
I thank each and every one of you for sticking with me and helping my blog become what it has in this very short time. 2012 has been a great year for me and I'm so pleased I decided to make this little blog back in June. I have spoken with so many lovely people and been part of a few special things, I've loved every minute of it! You wouldn't believe the amount of times I have gone to make a blog or YouTube channel and completely chickened out because I thought no one would care what I had to say! I have been really overwhelmed at how well my little corner of the Internet turned out to be, and with every follower, comment, e-mail and tweet I receive, it just brings a smile to my face! 
 Being part of this blogging community is just such a nice thing to be. Every blogger I've spoken to is so sweet and easy to talk to, who knew that just chatting about makeup can be so much fun! It feels good to be part of something that I have been following for about 4 years now and would recommend anyone to join!

Thank you again to each and every one of you!

Thursday 20 December 2012

Pretty Pink Lip | Lipstick Queen & DuWop Venom Gloss Review

Lipstick Queen swatch | DuWop Venom Gloss swatch | Lipstick Queen & DuWop Venom Gloss together
I'm always on the look out for products that work together to create a perfect combination. I'm a huge fan of lipstick and slowly getting there with lip gloss, and I love finding a lipstick and gloss that compliment each other really well. I've recently been wearing this pretty lip look which I have created from two new products; a Lipstick Queen lipstick and a DuWop Venom Gloss lip gloss.

The Lipstick Queen lipstick is part of the Butterfly Ball collection and is in the colour Fly. This lipstick is a bright pink shade with glitter in. It also has a turquoise iridescence running through it, which gives it a beautiful shimmer and when on the lips, makes your teeth look brighter. I have definitely noticed this effect and think it's a lovely extra to a lipstick.
The formula of the lipstick is very moisturising as it has vitamin E and aloe vera in it. It glides on really easily as well for quick application. It's also quite a sheer lipstick (like a butterfly's wing), but the colour is definitely buildable for a more intense pink look. As the product is quite sheer, the staying power of the product isn't amazing, probably a couple of hours before you need a touch up.
I also love the purple packaging. It feels very sturdy and strong, so will last a long time. I love the simplicity of the product and how small it is, so it's perfect to throw in your handbag for touch ups throughout the day.

The DuWop Venom Gloss in Pink Champagne is a perfect match for the lipstick. It's a pretty pink colour with golden shimmers in it. The formula of this lip gloss is amazing. I haven't found it to be sticky at all and it's sheer enough to go over any lipstick, but gives it an extra hint of pink. I also love the spicy smell of this lip gloss and think it's perfect for this time of year.
The applicator of this product isn't the most expensive looking, but it is great for applying on the go. I also like the fact the tube is see-through so you easily know which colour you're picking out from your makeup bag.

Together these two lip products create a pretty, shimmery pink lip that I think is perfect for any time of year. 

Have you tried these lip products before?
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Sunday 16 December 2012

Instagram Photos

Lily was feeling poorly | Rainbow! | The rain looked so pretty that afternoon | Burning Yankee Candle's Sugared Vanilla | Putting up some decorations in my room | Had the log fire burning | Primark floral nail wraps post HERE | Our Christmas tree | Taking Paddy for a Winter walkies | Frosty flowers | Lily in front of the tree | Yankee Candle's Autumn Blooms in my new Christmas candle holder

Now it's getting colder, I love taking pictures of the frost, candles and of course anything Christmas related! I also think adding little light details to pictures at this time of year makes them look so sparkly and Christmasy! I use the iPhone app Picfx which has a lovely selection of lights, filters and textures to make your pictures look that extra pretty.

Hope everyone's had a lovely weekend and looking forward to the Christmas holidays!

Thursday 13 December 2012

Winter Beauty Essentials

Winter is definitely the time of year when mine and many other people's hair and skin are at their worst. Frosty mornings, cold winds and the lack of sunlight can leave you feeling down but there are a few products I use to battle against all this!

Rimmel Wake Me Up foundation in 100 Ivory - this is a new foundation I picked up recently from Wilkinsons. Lots of the Rimmel makeup was down to under £5 so I thought I would try this out after hearing some great reviews. At this time of year as my skin can start to feel dry and dull, but this foundation has a slight shimmer in to make you look more awake and give a glow to your face. It's brightened up my complexion and makes my skin look a lot better than it really is! It has SPF 15 in too which can protect your skin from the Winter sun rays. It also lasts a really long time, especially if you set it with a powder.

Cath Kidston Hand Lotion in Cherry Blossom - I picked this up recently from TK Maxx for just £4.99 and thought it would be lovely to sit on my chest of drawers as a piece of decor. I wasn't expecting this to smell amazing and actually moisturise my hands, but it does! Really well in fact! The consistency is quite thick, so you only need a little pump. I'm not sure if they have this in a smaller size, but I would love to have one to pop in my bag to use it throughout the day!

Pantene 12 Hour Night Therapy Oil Replacement for Dry/ Damaged hair - as well as the Winter cold being really damaging for my hair, I recently used the L'Oreal Wild Ombres to Ombre my hair and was quite worried my hair would get damaged from the bleach. I found this product in Poundland and thought I would give it a go. This is amazing stuff! I apply it every night before I wash my hair (so about 2/3 times a week) and once I have washed my hair the next morning, it's super smooth! My hair doesn't go as frizzy after it's dry and is in such good condition compared to before I was using it. If you see this in your Poundland, definitely pick it up! It's really good and such a bargain!

Blistex Relief Cream - this is my all time favourite lip therapy cream. It has ingredients in that will help cold sores, sore, cracked and chapped lips. I use this when ever my lips feel sore or need some moisture and leaves them in great condition. Definitely worth keeping in your makeup bag.

Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter - everyone needs to use a body lotion in the Winter time as skin can get very dry. I love using this body butter on my elbows and knees as this is where they get the driest skin. I have also been using a sample of the L'Occitane Shea Butter Ultra Rich Body Lotion which I would really recommend too!

♥ Re-Gen Cream - this is my new skin care favourite! I read a review of this on Zoella's blog ages ago and finally found it in my local Asda. This cream basically has the same ingredients as Bio-Oil, but the great thing is you can use it on your face! It has reduced my pigmentation marks, blemishes and has left my skin feeling really soft and moisturised! I use it twice a day, everyday and noticed the results so quick. I will probably do a full review of this once I've tried it out for longer, but at the moment I love it! 

What are your Winter beauty essentials?

Friday 7 December 2012

Nails Of The Day | Floral

Floral Primark Nail Wraps £1

I've always loved the effect of nail foils/ wraps and Minx nails but I didn't want to spend around £10 on a set and not being sure if I would ruin them or if they would even last a day. I recently saw a review on the Primark nail wraps saying they were actually very good for £1, so I decided to pick up a floral set to try out. There are quite a few different styles you can pick from from tribal patterns to neon colours, but personally I think these ones are the prettiest!
These wraps are a black base with pink and yellow roses on which I think are very pretty for anytime of the year. You get 20 different sized strips per pack which means you can have them on your nails or toes!
They apply very easily. You select the wrap which most fits your nail and you can trim it so it fits perfectly. You then warm the strip up by rubbing it, peel it off and then apply it to your nail. Once you have smoothed it down, you file the edges to remove the excess strip. Very quick and simple! 
I don't think these will last very long on the nails, probably about a day as they may come off in the shower. But, I think these would be perfect for a special occasion where you'd only need them for that day.
I will definitely be picking these up again, they're a perfect way to have effortless and pretty nails!

Have you tried the Primark nail wraps?

Saturday 1 December 2012

November Favourite's

Dodgy winter lighting makes my pictures look so weird!
Today is the 1st of December, which means Christmas is literally days away! I'm so excited! I love spending the day with my family, eating good food and swapping gifts with everyone. But saying that, where has the year gone?! I remember last Christmas as if it was yesterday and can't believe we're going into 2013 in a few weeks. 
I have been enjoying a few products this month, so I thought I would share them with you.

Batiste Lace Dry Shampoo - I picked this up a while ago in a haul and said how nice it smelt and that I'd used it a couple times. I use this everyday that i haven't washed my hair and it leaves it smelling fresh, grease free and with lots of volume at the roots. I never used to be a huge fan of Batiste but now I can't get enough!

2True Liquid Eyeliner in 01 Black - I've been into very clean makeup this month where I do a nude lip and thick eyeliner. This is the best liquid liner I have used and it only costs £1.99 from Superdrug! It's so easy to apply, is very pigmented and stays on my eyes all day. Can't fault this product, I love it!

Superdrug's Vitamin E Skin Care Nourishing Night Cream - I've never bothered with night creams and usually used my day moisturiser at night. But I saw this in Superdrug for £2.99 and decided to give it a go because I had seen good things about other products in this line. At first when I used it, I thought I'd had an allergic reaction, but I think I narrowed it down to a different cleanser I had used the same day as my skin is perfectly fine now. It's super nourishing and hydrating so you only need a little bit. It's full of vitamins A, B, E, F and H as well as antioxidants which are great for the skin. My skin's been feeling extra soft and hydrated since buying this so would definitely recommend it for people with dry skins!

Makeup Academy Lipstick in Shade 15 Juicy - This is the lipstick I always use to create a nude lip (I think the lighting was weird when I took the picture, so it isn't as orange in real life). It's an orange toned nude which I think suits me well. I do find this lipstick a little dry, but I always pair it with the Barry M lip gloss in this picture. I'm a huge fan of MUA's lipsticks, and I have a review post about them HERE.

♥ Barry M Limited Edition Lip gloss - This lip gloss came free with an Impulse body spray, so doesn't actually have a name. It's a standard nude coloured gloss with no shimmer in, so is perfect for an everyday look. The best thing about this lip gloss is that it smells of caramel! It's amazing! I highly recommend Barry M lip glosses!

What are your November favourite's?

Thursday 29 November 2012

Review | Soap & Glory's Thick & Fast Mascara

No mascara | 2 Coats
 Soap & Glory's Thick & Fast Mascara in Super Jet Black £10

Soap & Glory are probably well known for their skin care products that smell amazing and come in beautiful packaging. I never thought about trying their makeup line until last year when I saw Elle magazine was giving away a free Thick & Fast mascara, so I decided to give it a go.
This mascara retails for £10 for 10ml of product in the colour Super Jet Black. 

The packaging of the mascara, as always with Soap & Glory, is very pretty and easily catches your eye. The tube itself is black plastic with pink writing on, which kind of reminds me of Benefit's Bad Gal Lash mascara. 
The wand and brush of this mascara does look quite daunting because it is very big and could be difficult for people with small eyes. However, I find this wand very easy to work with as it is about the same size as my eye, so coats all of my lashes evenly. The brush doesn't make the mascara clump on my eyes, but I do turn the brush as the apply to minimise any clumping. Also the wand is made from bristle hairs instead of plastic, which I find gives a more natural look as it doesn't clump as easy. There isn't any real fancy gimmick to the actual mascara brush, it's a pretty standard wand but does the job very well.

"Superfill false lash effect shine amplifiers and no flake technology."

The mascara formula is also very good. It's super (jet) black, so can create a really dramatic eye with the help of eyeliner and eyeshadow, or be used alone for a more natural look. I have thin, long eye lashes, but I find this mascara lengthens and thickens my lashes very well. I do like to layer it up a lot to make my lashes even thicker than in the photo (about 4 coats) for when I'm doing a more dramatic eye. 
In the quote it states that it is a "no-flake" mascara which I completely agree with. I've never had problems with this mascara flaking or falling on to my face throughout the day. I haven't noticed my eyelashes to be any shinier than usual, but the finish of the mascara is good and it stays on my lashes well. I also think you get quite a lot of product as I have been using this mascara daily for quite a while and each tube seems to last a good amount of time, about 4 months.

What's your everyday mascara?

Friday 23 November 2012

Instagram Photos

French manicures at college | Lily with a 'Sonic' hair do | Squirrel jigsaw! | Essie polishes from TK Maxx | Best Christmas chocolates | Being immature about college theory work | Essie and Revlon NOTD HERE | Glade orange & spice candle | Paddy wanting more food
Lily being crazy | Lily sleeping on black clothes. Not good! | Reindeer NOTD | Metallic pumps from New Look | Nails Inc polishes in Glamour magazine | What I wore to our bonfire party | Cute Cath Kidston catalogue | Trying to heal my dying hair | Lily posing at the window

I've been totally slacking at making these Instagram photos posts so I thought I would put my pictures from the last month or so into one post!

Just a little about my life, my college course is going really well! I can't wait to pass it and find a job in the beauty industry. I recently passed 2 practical assessments which was really motivating to finish this course. It's funny how waxing someone's leg can be so fun haha! 
You also may notice that I don't post as much as I used to when I started blogging. The main reason is rubbish winter lighting! Whenever I try and take pictures for posts, they always come out looking dark or weird looking. I know I should invest in a day light bulb, but I haven't got round to it. Do you have any tips about photographing in bad lighting?

If you would like to follow me on Instagram my user name is @amiehaffenden
Don't forget to enter my Christmas giveaway! Enter HERE


Monday 19 November 2012

Review | Max Factor Xperience Weightless Foundation

Blended slightly with fingers

I've mentioned this product as my everyday foundation on my blog quite a few times. I've been through so many foundations in the past few years, but it's always Max Factor ones I can rely on. I've been using this foundation for over a year and it's definitely something I could not live without!
I use the shade Raw Silk 45, which is the second lightest shade of the six.

The packaging is very simple, black and green which I really like and it makes it seem more expensive than it is. For £9.99, you get 30ml of product, which is a standard amount for any foundation. I like how you have to squeeze the product out because you can use as much or a little as you want. This way, I think you waste less product as you do with a pump dispenser as it won't stick to the sides or clog up in the bottle.

"Luxurious flawless coverage with a weightless feel. Suitable for sensitive skin. Won't clog pores. Oil free."

The description on the back totally sold this foundation to me, and I'm happy to say it lives up to it's promises! I have very sensitive skin and I haven't broken out or had any skin issues from using this foundation. As it's oil free and weightless, it also hasn't given me any spots or blemishes. I would say this foundation is a light to medium coverage with one layer, but can be built up to a more fuller coverage with two layers. I usually have two layers of this foundation on and it doesn't feel heavy or caky at all. The consistency of the foundation is liquid, it isn't too runny and doesn't feel wet on the skin. The finish is quite dewy, so is great for people who have drier skin, but can be mattified with powder for those with oilier skin. The staying power is also really good. I never have to reapply through the day and doesn't turn patchy/ cling to dry skin. It also has SPF 10 which is great for all year round to protect your skin from the sun's rays.

What's your everyday foundation?

Thursday 15 November 2012

Mini Haul | Beauty

Batiste Dry Shampoo in Lace £2.99 | Pantene Ice Shine Hairspray £2.99 | Aussie Limited Edition Luscious Long Leave-In Conditioner £4.99
Primark Natural Look Lashes £1 | Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Concealer £4.19 | Maybelline Colossal Volum' Express Mascara £7.19 | Soap & Glory Thick & Fast Mascara £10
Recently, Sainsbury's had a 3 for 2 offer across all hair care products, so I decided to pick up some new things to try. Firstly I picked up the Aussie Limited Edition Luscious Long Leave-In Conditioner as my hair has been feeling very dry at the moment, particularly at the ends. I absolutely love Aussie products as they always leave my hair silky smooth. This conditioner has eucalyptus and avocado oil in to "pamper your hair beyond the bounds of decency". It smells great, my hair feels soft after use and it leaves my curls very defined. Next I needed a new dry shampoo and I decided to try the Batiste one in Lace. I've heard some nice things about this product and I think the bottle is very pretty. So far I've been loving this! I've used it quite a lot this week and leaves my hair feeling fresh and smelling lovely. The final hair product was the Pantene Ice Shine hairspray. I used to use about a year ago, but I always change up on hairsprays because I usually buy what's on offer. I really like this hairspray. It's made for fine hair, which is what I have, so is strong but doesn't leave your hair crispy. I also find it sprays nicely, like a fine mist.

The next few beauty items are from a couple of shopping trips. I picked up the Primark Natural false lashes as I needed something to practise putting on eyelashes with and I heard in one of Kate's (dollybowbow) videos that these were pretty good! I also picked up my all time favourite concealer, the Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection in Light 2. This concealer lasts me ages and gives a full and even coverage every time. If you haven't given into the raving posts/ videos and bought this product, I urge you to now! Next up are my two favourite mascaras, Maybelline's Colossal Volum' Express in Black and Soap & Glory's Thick & Fast mascara in Super Jet Black. I can't fault either of these products! They apply so well, give a volumised, full and long lash and also last really well throughout the day.
Love, love, love!

Monday 12 November 2012

Review | The Nail Doctor Nail Strengthening System

I have always suffered with really weak, peeling nails that hardly grow and when they did, would snap off instantly. I saw this on the Fragrance Direct website and for £1.95, thought it was worth trying out.
 This system is aimed at nails that are: thin, peeling and splitting, which are definitely what my nails are like. It promises within 10 days your nails will be healthier and stronger.

This system comes with two steps: Toughen Up extra strength base coat and Rock On nail hardener.
The base coat is there to nourish the nails and has "the perfect combination" of vitamins A, E and B5 as well as aloe, proteins, red algae and a calcium builder to make your nails thicker and stronger.
The nail hardener (or top coat) creates a durable, protective layer over the nails. It contains: nonychosine, amino acids, ceramium rubrum extract and calcium to help the nails maintain moisture, become harder and improve their growth. To be fair, I didn't know what some of these ingredients were actually for, but they sounded impressive on the bottle. 

These polishes can either be used with a coloured polish in between or on their own. I have mostly been using them on their own as I can't wear nail polish to college. However, when I do use them with a coloured polish they do act as a good base and top coat. My nails haven't been badly stained and the top coat does refrain from chipping. My one big issue with the polishes is how small they are! Per bottle you get 4.4ml of product and as you can seen within a month I have used half of each! I only use both polishes about twice a week and it seems like I've used up a lot of product. If I was paying the full £10.29 for this set I would be very annoyed.

As for the results, within 10 days my nails felt a little bit stronger. However the tips of the free edges were still very weak so broke and caught on things easily. I really didn't think there would be any improvement in just 10 days as my nails grow so slow, it would take ages for the damaged nail to grow out. I have now been using this system for about a month and I must say my nails are slowly but surely getting stronger. They actually have white tips instead of clear and they seem to grow quicker. However, they are still easy to break which meant I had some long nails and some really short. So I made the decision to cut my nails down short so that they could grow together and hopefully be stronger.

I do recommend trying this, but only if you're a patient person who will use this weekly. For me, it doesn't stand by the 10 days promise, but this may depend on the condition of your nails. 

You can buy this system from Cheap Smells for £3.49 HERE or Amazon for £6.51 HERE.

Thursday 8 November 2012

Magazine Freebies | Glamour

Glamour Magazine December 2012 UK
Motcomb Street | St James | Glamour Glitter | Elizabeth Street

So this month in Glamour magazine, there's the chance to pick up 4 full sized nails inc. polishes worth £11 each! This is probably one of the best magazine freebies in a long time. I love freebies with Glamour, it's only £2 which means you can try new brands really cheap.

The 4 colours available are:
Motcomb Street - this may seem black at first glace but it's actually a really deep and dark navy blue. This applies really well, it's opaque, creamy and will be perfect for the colder months.

St James - this is described as a pillar box red that will add glam to any outfit. I'm loving bright red nails at the moment and this nail polish couldn't have come at a better time. It's my favourite out of the selection and again, this is has the same lovely formula as Motcomb Street.

Glamour Glitter - from the name and not being able to find this online, I believe this is a limited edition polish you can only get with Glamour magazine. It's a fine, gold glitter polish that would look perfect as a top coat, especially with the 3 other polishes.

Elizabeth Street - I'm wearing this polish at the moment and really like it. It's a perfect baby pink that would be great for French manicures! If you're just starting out with nail polish, this would be the best polish for you to pick up. Again, it has the same amazing formula and gives a healthy look to your nails.

All the polishes have a glossy finish and look great with just 1 coat! These are my first ever nails inc. polishes and would love to try some more.
I'm also currently giving away a nails inc. Glamour Glitter polish in my Christmas Giveaway, click on the link to enter!
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