Thursday, 1 December 2016

November Favourites

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Eau de Parfum
I can't believe I haven't mentioned this perfume in one of my monthly favourites posts before! Along with the Chloe Eau de Parfum, Flowerbomb is definitely one of my signature scents. I didn't want to buy a new bottle until I had finished off all the other perfumes that I didn't like as much. Anyway I recently got round to repurchasing it & couldn't be any happier. I love Flowerbomb because it's really floral & sweet but still quite sexy at the same time. The fragrance contains top notes of tea & bergamot, middle notes of jasmine, orchid, freesia & rose, with base notes of patchouli & vanilla. Plus it's an EDP so the scent lasts all day long. Something about this perfume just makes me feel really confident. From now on the original Flowerbomb & Chloe perfumes are the only ones for me!

Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops in Celestial
I've wanted to get my hands on these illuminating drops for so long & I finally managed to get a bottle from House Of Fraser, hooray! This liquid highlighter is one of the most stunning products ever. It literally looks like liquid metal on your skin. I got the shade Celestial which is slightly pink toned but if you want a more golden finish then Moonlight is a beautiful colour to go for. I like to mix this in with my foundation for an all over glow & I also apply it on top of my cheekbones using a Beautyblender. I like my highlight to look as metallic as possible so finding this product was a dream come true. I normally go for powder highlighters because liquid & cream products always disturb my base but the Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops leave my foundation looking flawless & my highlight looking wet. If you ever see these in stock don't hesitate to buy a bottle because they are simply amazing.

Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick in Alabaster
Hourglass are best known for their frankly incredible Ambient Powders. I've tried a few of their other products & I've never been disappointed with any of my purchases. They recently launched their Vanish Foundation Stick & I was pleased to see that the shade range is all encompassing. They have really pale & really deep shades as well as everything in between. I picked up the shade Alabaster & it's a great match for me. I absolutely love the way this foundation looks on my skin! The finish is so smooth & poreless. It gives such good coverage & blends out like a dream. I never thought I would love a stick foundation as much as this one but it really is fab. The only real downside is that it's such an expensive product & I've already used up quite a bit of it!

NYX Dewy Finish Makeup Setting Spray
Isn't it handy having NYX in Boots now? I picked up this product on a whim after I ran out of the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray & to be honest I can't really tell the difference between them. I've become one of those people who likes to douse themselves in setting spray after applying makeup so I do run out of it quite quickly. The NYX spray was only £7 so even though the bottle is half the size of the Urban Decay one, it works out to be a lot cheaper. I went for the Dewy Finish spray as I love the look of glowing skin. It gets rid of that powdery look & makes my makeup last for longer. Although I do love Urban Decay, I think I'll stick to the NYX one in future!

Colour Cleaner
I go through different stages with eyeshadow. Sometimes I couldn't care less about it but right now I'm really into it. Since investing in a few Makeup Geek eyeshadows I've become obsessed with trying out new looks & blending everything to perfection. Good blending requires good makeup brushes & to quickly clean my brushes between shades I've been loving this product. Colour Cleaner is a knockoff version of the Vera Mona Colour Switch. The product is basically a black sponge in a tin so I felt that paying £16 for it was outrageous. I found this one on eBay for £7.50 & it works in exactly the same way. You just swipe your eyeshadow brush over the sponge & it will remove any excess pigment so that you can use another colour. It's such a simple idea but works really well. Washing your brushes has to be one of the worst beauty related tasks so this clever sponge is the perfect way to put it off for a little bit longer.

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Wednesday, 30 November 2016

DIY Wooden Advent Calendar

Wooden advent calendars are becoming increasingly popular at this time of year. They give you the chance to spoil your loved ones with more than just a tiny chocolate every day as you count down to Christmas. Not only are they a wonderful pre-Christmas gift, they work as a charming festive decoration for your home during the holiday season. Like every popular Christmas item, it can be difficult to get your hands on one. Aldi had a stunning calendar for only £8.99 but they sold out almost instantly & I certainly wouldn't waste £64.95 on Harrods' offering! I love getting a bit crafty at Christmastime as I think that handmade personalised gifts are the best. I decided to try my hand at making a wooden advent calendar for Chloe. Last year she had a Lego advent calendar which came with a new Lego toy every day. This year's Lego calendar didn't look like much fun so I figured I could fill a wooden calendar with toys that she'll really love instead. I think that the finished calendar looks absolutely gorgeous & just as good as something you'd buy in the shops! Here's how I made my wooden advent calendar...

Makers of lockers for schools, Action Storage sent me one of these blank wooden advent calendars from Hobbycraft & a £20 gift voucher to buy some decorative supplies. I decided early on that I wanted to do a white house with gold & silver accents. I went to Hobbycraft in Leeds & although they had plenty of the calendars still in stock, the decorations were in short supply. They had hardly any numbers available for the advent doors so the shop assistants suggested I just drew them on instead. I picked up some gold & silver Posca pens for this purpose but I found these gold stickers in Chloe's craft box at home which were the perfect size. As I only had gold numbers I decided not to include any silver elements to make the overall design more cohesive.

I started my advent calendar design by covering the entire house with white acrylic paint. I used a really cheap paintbrush which made the paint look quite streaky so I had to do two coats for full coverage. It's important to leave the doors open after painting them otherwise they can get stuck! Next I used the gold Posca pen to colour in the doorknobs. I really like these pens, the colour looks great & they dry very quickly.

Next I decided to work on the roof. I had wanted to cover it with glitter but the tubs of glitter in Hobbycraft cost about a tenner so I just used some gold glitter washi tape that I bought on Amazon instead. The lines between the tape give the effect of roof tiles so I was happy with how this turned out. I also stuck a little gold bow in the centre because I thought it looked cute!

The doors are the most important part of the calendar so I wanted them to look really good. I like simplicity in design & because there are so many elements to this calendar I didn't want to overcrowd the doors. I decided to use the glitter stars, the glitter heart buttons & the gold bows. I didn't want to bother with a hot glue gun so I used glue dots to affix all the different elements to the calendar. I then stuck on all the number stickers underneath. You get a bigger door for the 25th so I stuck on three larger stars to make it look really special.

I finished off the top section with some more stars & a couple of heart buttons to hide the wood joints. I also put Chloe's name on top of the 25th door to further personalise the design. I'm so pleased with how it turned out! It looks super cute & very Christmassy. I love anything gold & sparkly so I think the colour scheme is perfect. Chloe absolutely loves her advent calendar & she can't wait to open the first door tomorrow!

As for the contents of the calendar it's totally up to you! This calendar would be a fantastic present for any of your friends or family. You could do a beauty one with things like eyeshadow pans, lip balm & nail polish. Chloe's obsessed with things like Monster High Minis & Shopkins which both fit perfectly inside the doors. I even managed to cram in a Tsum Tsum for Christmas Day! You don't have to spends loads of money either. In some of the doors I've placed chocolate coins & mini chocolate bars but she's most excited about the toys! I really enjoyed making this calendar & it's something that I'll look forward to bringing out every Christmas with new surprises tucked behind each door.

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Monday, 17 October 2016

NYX Round Lipsticks

NYX Mars, Femme, Tea Rose, Spell Bound, Doll & Fire
NYX Mars, Femme, Tea Rose, Spell Bound, Doll & Fire swatches
NYX Round Lipsticks - £4

It seems like the entire beauty community has gone completely mad for matte liquid lipsticks. I love them too but more often than not I still find myself reaching for traditional lipsticks. They may not have the longevity of their liquid counterparts but that doesn't mean they're inferior in any way. My top picks for classic lipstick bullets are MAC, Charlotte Tilbury, Illamasqua & NYX. In terms of price one of these brands is not quite like the others but in my opinion NYX's formula is pretty much on par with some of my favourite MAC lippies. NYX themselves have a ridiculous collection of every kind of lip product out there but their original Round Lipsticks will always have a special place in my heart. They've been around for years but I still use them all the time. With the recent introduction of NYX stands into Boots stores around the country, I think everyone needs to try out what I consider to be the best drugstore lipstick ever. They're creamy, smooth, highly pigmented & they only cost £4 each!

NYX Round Lipstick in Mars

The first shade I have is Mars which is a gorgeous toffee coloured nude. It has just the right amount of pink to it for my complexion & is deep enough that it doesn't wash me out. This is one of my very favourites as it's just a great everyday lipstick & this particular kind of brownish pink colour is very on trend right now. Like all of the NYX Round Lipsticks that I own, this colour is opaque in just one swipe & feels very moisturising on the lips.

NYX Round Lipstick in Femme

Next we have Femme which is so bright that I don't think my camera does this colour justice! When I bought this I was hoping it would be more of an orangey red like MAC Lady Danger but it's actually a vibrant coral shade. Despite being super bright it's actually really wearable because it's not neon. The formula simply glides onto the lips with the greatest of ease & has a lovely glossy finish.

NYX Round Lipstick in Tea Rose

Another of my favourites is Tea Rose. I'm a complete sucker for baby pinks so my love for this particular lip colour should come as no surprise. I often find that light pink shades lean towards the cool side but this is a medium rosy pink that would complement a wide range of skin tones. I believe that this is one of the most popular shades in the Round Lipstick lineup & it's with good reason. Not only does it suit a lot of people but it also goes with many different makeup looks. It's beautiful & so easy to wear.

NYX Round Lipstick in Spell Bound

Out of the six NYX Round Lipsticks that I own, Spell Bound is probably my least favourite. Although it's a pretty colour, I bought these quite a while ago & hot pinks aren't really my thing anymore. I just think it looks a bit gaudy on me? Discovering that I have a cool yellow undertone has certainly made my lipstick choices more complicated! Anyway if you like bright magenta shades you'll probably love this colour. I find that Spell Bound has the glossiest finish out of all of them whereas the others have more of a satin finish.

NYX Round Lipstick in Doll

Doll is a stunning deep raspberry pink & I think it's the perfect everyday colour for Autumn. There's something about this shade that seems very sophisticated to me. I feel like Spell Bound was a colour that I could pull off better when I was younger & Doll suits me a lot more now that I'm older. NYX lipsticks have a slight floral scent to them, it's not overpowering but I can notice the smell of Doll most of all.

NYX Round Lipstick in Fire

Fire is a bold red with pink undertones. I absolutely love this colour as it really pops against my complexion. I'm actually wearing this lipstick in the picture at the top of my blog sidebar, I thought it looked so cool with my baby pink hair. One thing to note about these NYX lipsticks is that because they're so creamy, they can smudge & transfer quite easily. If you want a long lasting red lippy this might not be the one for you. It stains my lips ever so slightly & fades evenly but you definitely need to top it up throughout the day.

Have you tried NYX's bargainous Round Lipsticks before? What's your favourite colour?

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