The Starting Off Project: Week 8. Eye Shadow

Eye shadow is a great way to define a colour in your makeup look, and can really make your eyes ‘pop’.  The most commonly used eye shadow is a pressed powder, but it also comes in loose pigment, eye shadow pencil, cream and liquid.

Mac eye shadows

Eye shadows come in three different finishes;

Sheer – for a hint of colour

Matte – a plain colour with no shimmer or shine

Shimmer – has sparkle and/or a metallic colour

Application:

There are many shapes and techniques in which you can apply eye shadow.   The following tips will help you emphasise your best features.

  • To make your eyes look bigger and more awake, apply a light shade on the inner corners of your eye.
  • If you have close set eyes, a darker colour on the outer corner will make them seem further apart.
  • To create a ‘cat-eye’ look, blend a darker colour on the outer corner of the eye and blend upwards.
  • To add depth to your eyes, blend colour in to the crease line of your eye socket.

Watch Pixiwoo’s Perfect Easy Smokey Eye Make-up:

This week for #theSOproject post I’m going to change it up a bit.  I normally review a selection of brands and products, but as I’m crazy about Mac’s eye shadow selection, I’m going to give you my top 10 Mac eye shadow shades.

In no particular order, my favourite 10 Mac eye Shadows are:

1. Orb (Satin)
2. Shroom (Satin)
3. Retrospeck (Frost)
4. Pink Freeze (Frost)
5. Star Violet (Veluxe Pearl)
6. Fig.1 (Matte)
7. Brown Down (Veluxe)
8. Woodwinked (Veluxe Pearl)
9. Bronze (Frost)
10. Carbon (Matte)

Mac eye shadows, L-R: Orb, Shroom, Retrospeck, Pink Freeze & Star Violet
Mac eye shadows, L-R: Orb, Shroom, Retrospeck, Pink Freeze & Star Violet
Mac eye shadows, L-R: Fig.1, Brown Down, Woodwinked, Bronze & Carbon
Mac eye shadows, L-R: Fig.1, Brown Down, Woodwinked, Bronze & Carbon

What’s your favourite Mac eye shadow shade?

Glossybox October 2013 – Dark Romance

Glossybox always give a few little hints throughout the month, and I was excited when I heard the theme was ‘dark romance’.  Lots of people were convinced we were going to get an on trend plum lipstick, so I was a tad disappointed when I opened the box.

Although there are a few good items, they don’t seem to relate to the theme at all.  Sort it out Glossybox!

Glossybox magazine october 2013

So here’s what I got this month …..

Glossybox October 2013

MeMeMe – Cherub’s Blush – Cheek & Lip Tint

Full Size £5.50 for 12ml

I’ve never been a fan of lip and cheek tints.  I think a powder blush is much more blendable and I find the stains hard to remove if you over do it.  I’m definitely not brave enough to put this all over my face!

Katy Perry – Killer Queen Fragrance

£29.50 for 50ml

I love this new fragrance from Katy Perry and the fruity floral fragrance is very long lasting.  This is something I would wear for the evening, and one small spray gave a good strong fragrance.

Monu – Illuminating Primer

£24.95 for 50ml

I’ve been wanting to try out a primer for a while and look forward to trying out this one.  I’ve had a little test and it has a nice fragrance and is very moisturising.  Will get back to you on how this one works with foundation.

Premae – Multi-Vit Smoothie Serum

£22.50 for 50ml

Premae is the ‘world’s first allergen-free brand’  and anything they produce is more than kind to your skin.  This serum is fragrance fee and should be used before moisturising.  My skincare routine is very basic so a serum is something I usually skip.  As it’s a ‘kind to skin’ product I will give it a go and see if it makes an improvement.

Eva Cosmetics – Mystic Diamond Argon Oil

£22.70 for 100ml

If you follow me on twitter you will know that I’m always complaining about my frizzy hair.  I have just ordered some Moroccan Oil which has been recommended to me, so in the mean time I will give this argon oil a try.  I currently use a Tresseme argon oil so will see how this one compares.

Glossybox – £10 plus £2.95 p&p

Super Cosy Winter Knitwear

The temperature has dropped dramatically in the past week and I definitely wasn’t prepared for it!  It’s not quite cold enough to dig out the big winter coat, but chilly enough to add a few more layers.

I love nothing better than to wrap up in a chunky cardigan or cosy jumper in winter, so have been looking for some great buys.

Here’s what I love:

Topshop Knitted Stud Necklace Jumper £46.00

Topshop Knitted Stud Necklace Jumper

New Look – Mint Green Angora Mix Slouch Jumper £19.99

New Look Mint Green Angora Mix Slouch Jumper

Peacocks – Textured Panel Jumper £18.00

Peacocks  Women's Textured Panel Jumper

Zara – Oversized Knitted Sweater £49.99

Zara - Oversized Knitted Sweater

ASOS – Petite Fluffy Arran Jumper With Bobbles £40.00

ASOS Petite Fluffy Arran Jumper With Bobbles

What Knitwear have you been loving?

The Starting Off Project: Week 7. Eyeliner

Eyeliner can really transform your eyes, and give you that dramatic glamorous look.  The technique can be tricky, but once you’ve mastered it, you will never go back.

Be a Bombshell, Collection 2000, L'Oreal, Maybelline, Mac and Avon
Clockwise from top left: Be a Bombshell, Collection 2000, L’Oreal, Maybelline, Mac and Avon

Eyeliner comes in many types, including gel, liquid, felt pen, pencil and shadow liners.  If you’re just starting out, your best bet is to practice with an eye shadow and an angled brush (like the Mac 266 brush).  You can plot the line in slowly starting from the inner corner, and if you make a mistake you can just blend it in and start again.

Once you’re feeling confident, try out a liquid liner which comes with a brush (normally in the lid).  Look down into a mirror and use one sweep to line the eye from the inner corner outwards.  Liquid and gel eyeliners give the most dramatic effect, and once dried will last all day.

An eye pencil can give you a beautiful soft line, and is really easy to blend into your upper and lower water line.  If you want to go for the full on smoky eye effect, line the lashes with liquid or gel with a flick, then fill in your upper and lower water line with a smudgy black kohl pencil.

Tip: If you want to create a flick with your liner, draw it in first with your eyes open, then line the eyes and connect the flick.

Watch the Pixiwoo Eyeliner Masterclass

Best Budget Eyeliner Buys

Pencil Eyeliner

Mac Eye Kohl in Smoulder

This Mac Kohl Pencil is a makeup bag essential.  It’s super soft, easy to blend and never seems to crumble or break.  Looks great smudged into the water line.

Mac Eye Kohl £14.00

Avon Supershock Gel Eyeliner Pencil in Blackberry and Black

I heard so many recommendations for the Avon Supershock Pencils that I had to try them out.  Like the Mac pencils, they are really soft, easy to blend and are a super bargain price.  These look great blended into the upper lash line using a fluffy brush (like the Mac 217 brush).

Avon Supershock Gel Eyeliner £6.00

Liquid Eyeliner

Collection 2000 Fast Stroke Liquid Eyeliner in 1 Black

Collection’s Liquid Liner is a great bargain buy and is really easy to apply to your eyes.  It dries quickly and is very long lasting.

Collection 2000 Fast Stroke Liquid Eyeliner £2.99

Gel Eyeliner

Maybelline Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in 01 Black

This is a recent purchase off the back of a recommendation, and I love it already.  It comes with a small brush, which I tested out, but I found it easier to apply with my Mac 266 angled brush.  The colour is smooth and dark, and once dried it does not budge.  Highly recommend!

Maybelline Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner £7.99

L’Oreal Superliner Gel Intenza in 01 Pure Black

This L’Oreal Gel Eyeliner is really similar to the Maybelline, and the brush included is identical.  There isn’t much to say in regard to differences; apart from this one is a little more expensive.  If you’re buying L’Oreal products on multi-buy, I would definitely recommend purchasing this eyeliner.

L’Oreal Superliner Gel Intenza £9.99

Pen Eyeliner

Be a Bombshell Cosmetics Pen Eyeliner in Onyx

This felt pen eyeliner from Be a Bombshell cosmetics was included in my September Glossybox, and I also added it in my September favourites.  If you’re in a rush, and don’t have time to carefully apply a liquid/gel eyeliner then this is the one for you.  It’s so easy to apply and gives a great smooth line.

Be a Bombshell Cosmetics Felt Pen Eyeliner in Onyx $14.00

 

The Starting Off Project: Week 6. Mascara

I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as mascara is pretty self explanatory! I wouldn’t dream of leaving the house without a slick of mascara, and just a few coats can really make a difference to your look.

As far as colour goes, I only ever opt for the blackest of black, but there are many other mascara shades out there. Technique is simple, look down into a mirror and use zig-zag motions to brush the mascara wand through your lashes. I generally use two coats of my favourite lengthening mascara, and for a dramatic look, an extra coat of a volume mascara.

Best Budget Mascara Buys

Max Factor False Lash Effect, Maybelline the Falsies and Max Factor Masterpiece Max
L – R: Max Factor False Lash Effect, Maybelline the Falsies and Max Factor Masterpiece Max

Max Factor – Masterpiece Max

I’ve loved this mascara for years, as it really separates and lengths your lashes. I use this daily and it always gives a really defined lash look with no clumping. The head of the brush bends, which makes application really easy.

Max Factor – Masterpiece Max £9.99

Maybelline – Volum’ Express – The Falsies

I tried this mascara from Maybelline out, as so many beauty bloggers were raving about it. The curved wand makes it easy to coat your lashes and gives a thick false lash effect. I find that I need to use the Max Factor ‘Masterpiece Max’ mascara initially to separate the lashes, then add this one to add the volume. Great for a statement lash look.

Maybelline – The Falsies £7.99

Max Factor – False Lash Effect

The Max Factor ‘False Lash Effect’ Mascara gives a similar full lash effect as the Maybelline mascara. This one gives you gorgeous fluttery lashes with no clumping. Max Factor often have multi-buy deals so I would highly recommend purchasing this one along with the ‘Masterpiece Max’ Mascara.

Max Factor – False Lash Effect £10.99

Max Factor False Lash Effect, Maybelline the Falsies and Max Factor Masterpiece Max
L – R: Max Factor False Lash Effect, Maybelline the Falsies and Max Factor Masterpiece Max

I would love to try a few new mascaras so leave me your recommendations in the comments.

September Favourites

Yet again, another month that has flown by! September is probably my favourite month of the year, as we say goodbye to summer and look forward to snuggling up with winter.  I got to visit Paris for the first time this month and also had a little trip to Brighton, so I’ve had an action packed September.

Essie, sephora, lucky charms, mac, be a bombshell, rimmel and soap & glory
L – R: Sephora Bronzer, Essie Nail Polish, Lucky Charms Cereal, Mac Eye Shadow, Be a Bombshell Eyeliner, Rimmel Concealer and Soap & Glory Gloss Stick.

So here’s what I’ve been loving this month:

 Essie –  Nail Polish in Fiji & Mint Candy Apple

Essie Fiji and Mint Candy Apple
L- R: Essie Nail Polish in Fiji and Mint Candy Apple

I tried Essie nail polish for the first time a couple of months ago, when I first purchased Essie’s ‘Fiji’.  It’s a soft pretty pink that’s really girly.  For the first time in my life, I actually used a whole nail polish until it was empty.  I normally buy a colour, use it for a while, then it gets replaced with a new colour when I get bored.  But I loved Fiji so much that I couldn’t get it off my nails!  So this Fiji is a brand new bottle, bought along with Essie’s ‘Mint Candy Apple’.  I didn’t think I could find a colour I loved as much as ‘Fiji’ but ‘Mint Candy Apple’ comes really close.  It’s a soft minty green and I have had so many compliments.

 Essie Nail Polish £7.99

 Sephora – Shimmering Bronzing Powder in  Medium

I picked up this Sephora bronzer when I visited Paris this September.  I loved the warmth of the shades and the compact also includes a mirror in the lid.  I had been waiting to try out some Sephora products for a while, so picked up a few different bits, but I especially love how natural this bronzer looks.

 Sephora Shimmering Bronzing Powder 14.50 €

 Be a Bombshell Cosmetics – Eyeliner in Onyx

I had this felt tip style eyeliner from Be a Bombshell in my September Glossybox.  I have been using gel eyeliner with a brush for a while, so was keen to try the pen style eyeliners again.  This one is great, as it applies a clean smooth line and dries quickly.  It doesn’t smudge or move all day, and comes off with one sweep of makeup remover.

 Be a Bombshell Eyeliner $14

 Mac – Eye Shadow in Shroom (Satin)

I love Mac eye shadows.  They have great pigmentation, minimal fall out and seem to last forever.  I love a light eye shadow shade, so thought I would try something a bit shimmery this time.  It’s similar to Mac’s Naked Lunch, but is a gorgeous mushroom colour.  It can be blended with any colour, but looks especially nice with a dark brown.

 Mac Eye Shadow £12.50

 Soap & Glory – Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Stick in Bashful

I included the Soap & Glory Gloss Stick in ‘Raplumzel’ in my August favourites, but I have been using the shade ‘Bashful’ a little more this month.  ‘Bashful’ is a sugary sweet candy pink, but looks really natural when applied lightly.  These Gloss sticks from Soap and Glory are so easy to apply, and I love how hydrating they make your lips feel.  When I am brave enough I will purchase the bright red shade!

 Soap and Glory Gloss Stick £8.00

Soap and glory bashful, be a bombshell eyeliner and mac eye shadown in shroom
Top – bottom: Soap and Glory Gloss Stick in Bashful, Be a Bombshell Eyeliner in Onyx and Mac Eye Shadow in Shroom

Rimmel – Wake Me Up Concealer in Ivory

My collection 200 concealer had become a little too dark for my skin tone, so I decided to try out a different concealer.  I have the Rimmel ‘Wake Me Up’ foundation which works great, so I decided to try out the concealer.  It’s really moisturising and gives a lovely glow to your skin.  It’s quick and easy to apply and blends in well with a fluffy brush.

 Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer £5.49

 Lucky Charms Cereal Pot

I thought I would add in this cheeky little pot of Lucky Charms to my September favourites, as September is my birthday month.  Every birthday I get given one of these pots which I indulge on the morning of my birthday!  I would happily eat this cereal every single day but my teeth would probably fall out.  I look forward to my next bowl next year!

Lucky Charms Cereal Pot £1.50

Comment below and let me know what you have been loving this summer.  Do you have any birthday traditions?

This or That Beauty Tag

Thank you to Sophie at S K Beauty for Tagging me in the ‘This or That’ Tag.  I’ve never done one of these before, so I hope you enjoy!

the other dress

Make Up

Blusher or Bronzer:

I would always choose a blusher over a bronzer, as blusher gives me such a healthy glow.  Mac ‘Well Dressed’ is a favourite.

Lipgloss or Lipstick:

Lipstick as they have more staying power.

Liner or Mascara:

I would never ever leave the house without wearing mascara.

Foundation or Concealer:

Foundation as it gives me a good coverage without always needing concealer.

Neutral Eyeshadow or Colour Eyeshadow:

Neutral.  I love a beige, brown or cream coloured eye shadow.  The Urban Decay ‘Naked Basics’ has it all.

Pressed or Loose Eyeshadow:

Pressed – less mess!

Nails

OPI or China Glaze:

OPI.  Such a great selection of colours.  If I had the choice, I prefer Essie.

Long or Short Nails:

Short

Acrylic or Natural:

Natural

Bright or Dark:

Bright for summer, pastels for winter.

Flower or No Flower:

No flower, I like a plain finish.

Body

Perfume or Body Spray:

Perfume.  ‘See by Chloe’ please!

Lotion or Body Butter:

Lotion.

Body Wash or Soap:

I have used Dove soap for ever and ever.  Creature of habit.

Lush or Other Bath Companies:

Soap and Glory have the most delicious smelling bath products.

Fashion

Jeans or Sweat Pants:

Jeans.

Long Sleeves or Short Sleeves:

Long.

Dresses or Skirts:

Dresses.

Stripes or Plaid:

I cannot resist a stripe!

Flip Flops or Sandals:

Flip flops.  Not very attractive but oh so comfy.

Scarves or Hats:

Always wear a big scarf and I never look right in a hat.

Studs or Dangly Earrings:

Sparkly studs.

Necklace’s or Bracelets:

Bracelet.

Heels or Flats:

Flats for the day, heels at night.

Jackets or Hoodies:

Jacket, or stealing my husbands hoodie!

Hair

Curly or Straight:

Straight (after taming my frizz!).

Bun or Ponytail:

Ponytail

Bobby Pins or Bufferfly Clips:

Bobby Pins, an absolute essential!

Hair Spray or Gel:

Hair Spray.

Long or Short:

Extra long.

Light or Dark:

Dark.

Side Sweep or Full Bangs (Fringe):

Side sweep.

Up or Down:

Down.

Random

Rain or Shine:

This question is funny as I’m the worse for complaining about the weather/temperature.  I hate being too hot, or too cold.  Somewhere in the middle and I’m happy!

Summer or Winter:

Winter to wrap up warm.

Autumn or Spring:

Spring as I love it when the flowers start to blossom.

Chocolate or Vanilla:

Chocolate and lots of it!

 

 

Paris in Pictures

I have always wanted to visit Paris and was so excited to travel there this September.  It really is the most romantic city in the world, and was full of colour and culture.

I managed to drag my husband along to Disneyland for the day and was surprised at how many adults there were in comparison to children! We had a really fun day but it was hot hot hot!  We visited all the main tourist sites and also threw in a little bit of shopping.

So here is my Paris in pictures:

The Lovers Bridge Paris
The Lovers Bridge Paris
Eiffel Tower Paris daytime
The Eiffel Tower Paris in the daytime
The Eiffel Tower Paris at night
The Eiffel Tower Paris at night
Charlie Chaplin Bowler Hat Lampshade
Charlie Chaplin Lampshade in our Hotel room – Very Paris!
Arc De Triomphe - Paris
Arc De Triomphe – Paris
Disneyland Paris - Sleeping Beauty's Castle
Disneyland Paris – Sleeping Beauty’s Castle
Disneyland Paris photo montage
Disneyland Paris
Disneyland Paris - Sleeping Beauty's Castle
Disneyland Paris – Sleeping Beauty’s Castle
Centre Pompidou Paris - Modern Art Museum
Centre Pompidou Paris – Modern Art Museum
Sephora Paris store front
Shopping on Champs-Élysées Paris – Sephora
Mercedez Benz Paris
Shopping on Champs-Élysées Paris – Mercedes Benz shop

 

 

 

 

 

Sephora Paris Shopping Trip

I was so excited to visit Paris this September, and especially to go shopping on Champs-Élysées.  The shops there are incredible and it was my first time visiting a Sephora.  We happened to go there on a Saturday, which was a BIG mistake as it was very busy and was boiling hot that day.

Sephora Paris store front

When I was in Sephora, all I could think was this is like the Disney Store of makeup! It was crazy in there, and filled to the brim with all the luxury makeup brands you can think of.  I managed to fight my way through the crowds and grab a few bits.  I decided to try out a few of the Sephora own brand products as you can’t get them in the UK (Sephora is available online) and they looked like great products.

Sephora Paris store inside

Sephora Fragrance stand

The Sephora colour selection was almost as vast as Mac, and you can put together palettes.  In the end I settled for a gorgeous shimmering bronzing powder, a pink lip pencil and a nude eye shadow palette.  I love the packaging of the palette,s and both the bronzer and the eye shadows give off a beautiful natural look.  The staff threw in a few perfume and moisturiser samples, along with a cute little bracelet which was a bonus.

Sephora bronzing powder, eye shadow palette and lip liner
L-R: Shimmering Bronzing Powder – Medium 2
Natural Shadow and Liner Palette – Almost Nude 09
Lip Liner – Pure Pinky 16

Sephora bronzing powder, eye shadow palette and lip liner

If I’m ever near a Sephora again I would definitely make a few more purchases!

Shimmering Bronzing Powder – Medium 2

Natural Shadow and Liner Palette – Almost Nude 09

Mini Lip Liner – Pure Pinky 16

 

 

The Starting Off Project: Week 4 & 5 Bronzer & Blusher

I’ve had a crazy few weeks, and have been on a few weekends away, so I apologise for the delay in weeks 4 & 5 of #theSOproject !  I thought I would combine these two posts as they fit together nicely.

Applying foundation to your face can often take out the natural colours of your face, so adding a blusher or a bronzer is essential to give you a sun kissed radiance.  Blushers and Bronzers come in many forms such as powder, cream and liquid and can be applied using a brush, sponge or your fingers.

Blushers and Bronzers

Application

Choosing the correct blusher/bronzer colour is as important as getting your foundation colour right.  A darker skin colour can get away with bold bright colours and a pale skin should stick to light shades.  Remember  a little goes a long way!

Applying blusher

Blusher should be applied to the apples of your cheeks (smile and find the raised areas of your cheeks) and blended outwards towards your hairline.  You don’t have to stick to one colour blusher, blending two can give you a beautiful soft glow.

Applying bronzer

To get a beautiful sun kissed glow, apply bronzer lightly, focusing on areas that the sun would naturally hit.  This includes the high parts of your cheeks, forehead, chin and jaw line.

Contouring & highlighting your cheekbones

Contouring involves low lighting for areas you want to recede, and highlighting for areas you want to emphasise.  I am not an expert at this, but the basics are as follows:

Find the hollows of your cheeks, which is right underneath your cheekbone.  If you have trouble finding this area, run your blusher brush up your cheek and it’s the area your brush stops.  Apply your bronzer or darker low lighter using an angled or blusher brush, using light sweeping motions from the high parts of your cheek upwards towards your hairline.  To make your cheekbones stand out, you need to apply a highlighter at the high parts of your cheekbones.

Watch the video below by Wayne Goss for an extreme Kim Kardashian contour look:

Do I need tanned skin to wear bronzer?

No! Anyone can wear bronzer.  If you have pale skin, choose a bronzer one to two shades darker than your natural skin tone.  A multi toned mosaic style bronzer with pinks and beige’s will work best.

Best Budget Blusher Buys

Mac Blushers
L-R: Mac Blushers – Mocha,Margin & Well Dressed

 

Mac – Powder Blush – Well Dressed, Mocha & Margin

Mac offers a brilliant selection of blushers, and a little bit goes a really long way.  I wear ‘Mocha’ most days as it’s a beautiful dark pink that gives a natural flush.  ‘Well Dressed’ is a gorgeous shimmery light pink that looks great on pale skin and gives a soft glow.  ‘Margin’ blusher borders on a bronzer as it’s a peachy golden shade that looks great with tanned skin.  Overall Mac blushers are great quality and well worth the price.

Mac Powder Blush £18.00

Rimmel – Stay Blushed – 004 Sunkissed Cherry

I don’t normally go for liquid blushers, but this was a great addition to my September Glossybox.  It applies as a bright pink, but blends into a gorgeous soft pink.  This Rimmel blusher has a lovely scent and is really long lasting.  Great for a natural flush of colour.

Rimmel Stay Blushed £4.49

Best Budget Bronzer Buys

Bronzers: Sephora, 17, sleek
L-R: Sephora, Sleek & 17

Sephora – Shimmering Bronzing Powder – 2 Medium

I picked up this Sephora bronzer from a recent trip to Paris, and couldn’t resist buying it as the tones look so bright and warm.   A quick sweep across the bronze tones and bright pink gives a gorgeous summery glow that applies really naturally.

Sephora Shimmering Bronzing Powder 14.50 €

17 – Instant Glow Shimmer Brick – Pink Bronze

This Shimmer bronzer from 17 is a great duplicate for the Bobbi Brown Shimmer Bricks and is a fraction of the price.  If you’re looking for something super shimmery then this is a great one for you.  You can sweep across the pink tones for a blush, the gold tones for a bronze, or across all tones for a beautiful glow.

17 Instant Glow Shimmer Brick £4.99

Sleek – Face Contour Kit – Light

Sleek makeup is such value for money, and this contour kit is amazing quality for the price.  The palette includes a matte bronzer and a shimmering highlighter which really complement each other.  The bronzer is quite dark considering this is the lightest Sleek palette,  so use sparingly!

Sleek Face Contour Kit £6.49