Monday 23 February 2015

50 Shades of Nudes featuring W7 and Urban Decay (Nude Palettes)

Every blogger has a nude palette or six in their arsenal, they are the quick, fail safe options that can never go wrong. I jumped on the Naked palette bandwagon quicker than you could say 'blogger hype', and believe me they are worth the hype! I just can't get enough of nude shadows!

Shades: Virgin, Sin, Naked, Sidecar, Buck, Half Baked, Smog, Darkhorse, Toasted, Hustle, Creep and Gunmetal

This palette is by far my favourite out of the Naked Trio, it's what I reach for the most. For everyday wear, I'd reach for the paler shades, I just apply one shade over the lid and blur the edges with a fluffy brush, Sidecar is a perfect shade for this. For a night out, I tend to blend three or four of the smokier shades together. Smog and Darkhorse are perfect for the outer V and along the lower lash line for added drama to the eyes.
As you can see I've used up Virgin, it's the perfect highlight colour for me, although I do think there are plenty more affordable versions from the high street of this shade.

Nude Eyeshadow Palettes, Urban Decay and W7

Shades: Foxy, Half Baked, Booty Call, Chopper, Tease, Snakebite, Suspect, Pistol, Verve, YDK, Busted, Blackout

This is my second choice in the Naked Palettes, the shades more wearable than the Naked 3 but I just don't find myself reaching for it. I've not really touched Blackout and Busted, I love YDK though, I like to apply this over the lid and then use Smog and Darkhorse from the original Naked and blend for a super smoky eye look.

Shades: Strange, Dust, Burnout, Limit, Buzz, Trick, Nooner, Liar, Factory, Mugshot, Darkside, Blackheart

This is my least used Naked Palette, unfortunately the pinky hues don't suit my pale skin tone, they make my eyes look red and irritated. I can't wear a few of the shades teamed with more brown toned shadows, this helps balance the colours. I would say save your money, if thinking of buying this palette.

Every time a new Naked Palette was released, bloggers would go on a hunt for similar, more affordable palette on the market. This W7 one is under £5 and has a great range of neutral shades that will suit everyone. This palette doesn't really have any dramatic shades so it would be more for a day time look but you can see it makes an excellent dupe for some of the shades in the Naked palettes.

Well if you counted there wasn't actually 50 shades of nude in this post, perhaps I should buy another palette to even out the numbers!

Have you got any of these palettes? Any new ones you'd recommend to me?

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Thursday 19 February 2015

Before You Buy

We've all had that moment when you feel like money is burning a hole in your pocket, you've planned a shopping trip and you are going to splash the cash. You flump down onto the bed when you get back, exhausted from shopping (it's my cardio), and look down at the mountain of bags. 'Did I really need that?' I ask myself.

My wardrobes and drawers are cramped with items that were bought on impulse and now I refuse to throw them out as most of them have the labels still on. I mean I will wear them one day right?!
I've thrown my money at the latest over hyped beauty products and they now sit unused and unloved.

Before You Buy, tips on avoiding impulse buying

I'm trying to learn by my expensive mistakes, I've put together a few helpful tips to stop you regretting your purchases like I have:

1. Use Blogs as a Research Tool

Being a blogger, I actively look at other blogs for recommendations. Try searching something like 'MAC Russian Red Lipstick Blogger Review', this will bring up any useful posts on the item, hopefully the blogger will have swatches too.

2. Use Google Images to get a True Representation

I like to see swatches and the products tested on a real person, using the lipstick shade as an example again, I would search 'MAC Russian Red Lip Swatch' or 'MAC Russian Red Pale Skin' to see what the lipstick would look like on a pale girl's skin. 

3. Make Up Alley Reviews

If you like your products to be rated in stars so it's easier to digest, Make Up Alley is the site for you. Readers will submit their opinions on the product in a similar way to an Amazon review, they can upload photos too. The clever thing about MUA is the filters, they are especially good when you want to see a review on a foundation. For me, I'd want to know how a foundation would act on my oily skin - you can choose your skin type, hair colour and eye colour to narrow down the results, such a handy tool.

4. Tweet Tweet

I like chatting to people about products and getting recommendations through Twitter. The best times to interact are during the #bbloggers and #fbloggers chats, tweet asking for links to posts on the product you want to buy. Once you've given the post a read, you can then communicate with the helpful blogger on how they use it or what the stay power is like for example, if your questions aren't answered in the blog post.

5. Samples

Samples are the perfect way to try out a product without splashing your cash. Don't get pulled in by the Sales Assistant, I use the line 'I want to try it out at home without the harsh shop lighting and I'll come back and purchase if it's okay'. You can also turn your sample tries into a new blog post!

6. Do I Really Need This?

After my little research project on the item, I often realise that the new product is very similar to something I already own. If they are similar, ask yourself what's different about this one? If you can name 5 things then it might be worth a purchase, but if not step away from the make-up counter.

7. Dupes

Another tip is searching something like 'MAC Russian Red Dupe' and see if there is a more affordable version on the high street. You'd be surprised how many brands take inspiration from high end companies or are under the same umbrella, for example Bourjois and Chanel are own by the same company.

I hope this post will help you to save your pennies and steer away from impulse purchases.

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Monday 16 February 2015

My Favourite Blogs to Read: Part One

When I started college in 2008, Vogue was my bible. I'd enrolled on a Fashion Design course so I spent hours pawing the pages, absorbing the language, trends and imagery.

Gone are the days where I will spend £3-£4 on a magazine, blogs are my main source of inspiration. They are easily accessible, free to read and are the most up to date and honest source of information.

I want to see a relatable face, taking the latest trends into their own hands instead of a size zero model in unwearable couture gowns. I like style with personality and fashion blogs give me just that.

If I want to see the latest beauty trends, I won't head to the newstand, I'll have a browse on Bloglovin or tweet asking for some links to new posts from fellow bloggers. I rarely buy any make-up without reading at least 5 reviews, and if I do take a risk, I'm almost always disappointed. I have a few trusted bloggers I rely on for a good, honest and in-depth review.

I thought I'd share my favourite fashion and beauty bloggers with you. You might find someone new to read and find your own inspiration in their posts.

Helen at The Love Cats Inc -

I don't read the 'Missguided' girl's blogs, I just can't get on board with bare legs in winter. I want to see thick coats and jeans styled to perfect. Helen's wardrobe is classic, she knows the importance of staple pieces and that's what I like about her. Her outfits aren't over the top, they are outfits you'd genuinely feel comfortable in. She's also started posting more beauty pieces, which I love!

Michelle at Thou Shalt Not Covet -

Michelle is primarily a beauty blogger but she has a wonderful mix of topics on Thou Shalt Not Covet. If you like Makeup Revolution, you'll love her blog, she has the best reviews on new products from the brand.

Gemma at Miss Makeup Magpie -

Gemma is an encyclopaedia of beauty products, instead of searching a new product on Make-up Alley I'd rather go to Gemma for the latest scoop. She has wonderful, clear photography and is honest with her reviews, a source you can trust.

Kat from Tales of a Pale Face -

I often follow bloggers with a similar skin tone or hair colour. Kat has flawless pale skin, similar in tone to my own so I like to read up on her reviews, it means swatches can be easily interpreted to see if would suit me. This saves me a lot of time and effort trawling for pale appropriate products, so thanks Kat!

Charlotte at Style Splurging -

Charlotte's blog needs more recognition, I just want to pin every one of her photos to my Pinterest boards. She not only has reviews, but she also creates wonderful features that make reading her blog a pleasure.

I read hundreds of blogs a week and I could gush about my favourites all day. I feel there are so many bloggers that need a shout out but I plan to share the love on Follow Fridays on Twitter, so keep an eye out for more blog recommendations.

Who are your favourite bloggers? Which blogs do you read religiously?

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Thursday 5 February 2015

My Perfume Collection featuring Viktor and Rolf, YSL, Chloe and Paco Rabanne

All bloggers struggle with describing scents, I'm no exception but I wanted to share my current perfume collection. So watch/read me struggle with descriptions below!

Chloe by Chloe
Top Notes: Peony, Lychee, Freesia
Middle Notes: Rose, Magnolia, Muguet
Base Notes: Amber, Cedar

Chloe is my favourite perfume, it's a wonderful floral fragrance, which everyone compliments me on. It's none offensive and I feel it would suit everyone. I'd say it's a daytime, spring kind of fragrance, perfect for girly girls.

Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb
Top Notes: Bergamont, Tea
Middle Notes: Jasmine, Freesia, Orchid
Base Notes: Centiflora Rose, Patchouli

This is fragrance is to die for, slightly sweet but deeply floral, it's one that I save for special occasions. Every time I spritz this perfume, I feel elegant, it's a timeless fragrance that is so beautiful. It's not the most affordable, so perhaps put this on your birthday list.

Paco Rabanne Lady Million
Top Notes: Neroli, Bitter Orange, Raspberry
Middle Notes: Orange Flower, Arabian Jasmine
Base Notes: Honey, Patchouli

Lady Million is such a popular perfume, most of my girlfriends have this in their collection. It's a sultry, warm scent that is ideal for nights out. It's extremely long lasting, I catch whiffs of the scent throughout the day and others can smell it too.
I've heard that both Next and Zara have copies of this fragrance so save your pennies.

YSL Black Opium
Top Notes: Pink Pepper, Orange Blossom
Middle Notes: Jasmine, Coffee
Base Notes: Vanilla, Patchouli, Cedarwood

The newest of my perfume collection, YSL Black Opium was released last year and bloggers loved it. I'd describe it as sweet yet sexy, it's a scent that is quite intriguing as it's warming. I adore the black glittery bottle too, very punk chic!

Do you own any of these perfumes? What perfume can you not live without?

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