Friday, 27 June 2014

Face of the day

Witch BB Cream ♡ MAC MSF Natural ♡ Collection Lasting Perfection Conceler ♡ MAC Studio Finish Conceler ♡ Benfit High Beam Highlighter ♡ Rimmel Brow Pencil in Hazel ♡ MUA Blush Shade 1 ♡ Loreal False Lash Telescopic Mascara ♡ Rimmel Black Eye Kohl Liner ♡ Naked Palette 1 'Half Baked' ♡ Naked Palette 2 'Strange' to highlight 'Factory' all over and 'Blackheart' on the outer corner ♡ MAC Myth Lipstick ♡ 


This is the first time in about two weeks where I've worn proper eyeshadow, hayfever has been making my eyes itchy like mad so I've tried to skip as much eye makeup as possible as I end up taking it off as soon as I come in from work! Just went for a spot of retail therapy and coffee with my friend today and think that the subtle smokey eye look is perfect for everyday :)

My Current M●A●C Wishlist

mac wishlist makeup skincare

It's been a while since I purchased something different from MAC I'm a bit stuck in my comfort zone of repurchasing studio fix and lipsticks but I think it's time to branch out a bit more!

♡ Matchmaster SPF foundation £27
♡ Mineralize Skinfinish in Lightscapade £23
♡ Fix+ £14.50
♡ Strobe Cream £23.50
♡ 217 Blending Brush £18
♡ 193 Angled Foundation Brush £27
♡ 188 Small Duo Fibre Face Brush £27

Have you tried any of these before? What would you recommend?

Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte Lipstick in 'Lingerie Pink'

Oh, my gosh. This has got to be the most luxurious and exquisite piece of makeup I have ever owned. I even refuse to take it out with me as I'm not covered with lipstick insurance ;) The first time I saw this featured was on a shaaanxo video about two years ago and I simply fell in love...(Is it weird to fall in love with a lipstick? ..probably) Due to the price (£25) I actually ended up finally asking for this as a birthday gift from my mum last month and it does not dissapoint. The second I opened the packaging and turned the bottom around so the lipstick could pop up I was mesmerised by the heavy expensive feel of the whole container and the baby pink colour inside. I believe the colour does show up a lot darker in photos and on the actual lipstick, but on the lips it glides on with a creamy almost glossy texture with extreme pigmentation and longevity. 
I would most definitely recommend this lipstick to anyone who wanted to break out of their MAC obsession and delve into something with maybe more depth - the whole rouge volupte range has gorgeous shades of colours to choose from and I hope to be adding to mine eventually!

Have you tried any YSL lipsticks before? ♡

M●A●C St Germain Lipstick Review

mac st germain lipstick review swatch makeup pink

The most gorgeous, girly, bright & bubbly pink colour MAC has to offer, St Germain has been a lipstick I have lusted over for a very long time now and I'm not disappointed. The colour payoff is incredible, and the amplified finish makes it stand out, sure enough to make your lips the focal point. The fact it is a cool blue toned pink means it's flattering for more pale complexions, which makes its much more wearable for everyday and a pretty spring alternative to the winter red. 
As it is such a bubblegum pink colour, it's useful to wear a balm underneath to tone it down and remember to exfoliate your lips beforehand so it doesn't cling to any dry areas. Adding a clear gloss on top will also add an extra dimension to the colour and complete the look. Depending on what look you are going for it's very easy to build up and intensify the strength of colour which I love as it can be adapted to suit any occasion! Overall I have to say this may be taking over my favourite MAC lipstick crown from Hue, especially for spring/summer anyway.. 

Have you tried this shade before? What lipstick shades are you wanting to try?

MAC Cosmetic £15.00 ♥

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Benefit They're Real Mascara Review

benefit they're real mascara review swatch

This post may be a little late to the game but nevertheless this cult beauty staple, the No.1 beauty product in the whole entire country has become something I can't be without. Benefit's They're Real mascara has been seen everywhere recently due to the new liner in the same range.

The first time I tried it I have to say I was dissapointed, but I had read reviews that advised after opening the product to leave it for a couple of days to dry out a bit more which somehow makes the solution a million times better.

I especially love using it to add volume and darken my lashes, the end part of the brush (of which the whole design is now copyrighted) is perfect to use for those tricky to reach bottom and tiny inner lashes.


  • Lengthens & thickens
  • Darkens extremely well
  • Small enough to fit into the tiniest of makeup bags


  • Find this quite irritating on my eyes when removing so like to only wear on special occasions like nights out.
  • The price - We all know Benefit is expensive and I don't think it's ever going to get any easier handing over £17 for a mascara, but I know it works so it's justifiable 
I don't want to make any huge claims here as the whole 'irritating my eyes' thing is quite a serious negative note, but this mascara actually works and is by far the best I have tried although due to the expensive price tag I'm a little hesitant to repurchase and there as so many cheaper alternatives I would also like to try!

Have you used this mascara before? What did you think?

Hayfever Survival Guide

Little bit of a different post I write this I am currently in bed suffering with sinusitus (infected sinuses probably due to hayfever just imagine your head, cheeks and ears hurting all at once, not fun) and after looking at various social media websites this morning I've seen so many people complaining of hayfever symptoms and how the pollen count is meant to be really high over the next week!

I don't remember a summer where I didn't have hayfever. Summer school exams would be hell for me come around May/June time my head would be stuffy, I'd have a sniffly nose, itchy eyes - it really stopped me from being able to concentrate and I'd hate sitting in exam halls being the one person sneezing the whole way through.

Over the last few years I've picked up some tips & tricks and found out what works for me to try reduce my symptoms as much as possible.

  • When you know the pollen count is going to be high, try avoid being outside as much as possible - If you do have to be outside then make sure to wear sunglasses to stop anything going in your eyes and vaseline on your nose to trap anything from irritating there.
  • Taking showers or baths before bed to wash any pollen off of you so it's not in your bed will help you not get as irritated at night - as well as changing your bed sheets often!
  • Prevention is better than cure! - I use a nose spray called Beconase (what I'm currently treating my sinusitus with) but to get the full use of it I find it's better to start using around April time to build up your tolerance.
  • Eat better - There is more & more research being done to show that our bad diets are to blame for hayfever, plus eating a few more vegetables is always good!
  • Try and figure out what type of pollen you are allergic to - Grass pollen (most common), tree pollen and weed pollen
  • This one isn't so good but if you have pets that go outside a lot then try to avoid being around them so much on bad days as they can bring pollen in from outside.
I hope this helps anyone suffering with hayfever, it can really suck the fun out of summer - What have you used to help you?

Illamasqua Nymph Blush

illamasqua nymph blush swatch review makeup

This being my first ever Illamasqua purchase (retailing at £21.50) I had extremely high hopes for this blush and it certainly does not disappoint! Similar to MAC's Dollymix shade this is highly pigmented and is complimentary to every skin tone. The packaging is sturdy and strong something which I believe other brands such as MAC lack in, I always find the circle of plastic falls out after being carried around in my makeup bag a couple of times. I must admit I don't tend to stray away from the bright girly shades of pink, I love the way they can take you from looking like a zombie to giving you the healthy rosy cheek look we all aim for so easily. I like to apply this using my trusty Real Techniques Blush Brush, although due to the pigmentation if you would like a softer look be sure to tap off any excess thoroughly. I'm very impressed with my first Illamasqua item and look forward to adding to the collection!

Illamasqua £21.50 ♥

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

My Current Skincare Routine

skincare routine garnier lush olay toner cleanser moisturiser clinique

I think that skincare posts are probably one my favourite types of blog posts to read. It's taken me a while to find some products which work for me through a lot of trial and error so I thought I would share them with you :)

In the morning I use the lush ultrabland cleanser and remove with a muslin cloth or flannel to exfoliate any dead skin cells. Then I tone using the Tea tree toner which helps mattify the skin before makeup and helps my skin not get so oily throughout the day.
I've recently been using an eyecream for the first time ever (I'm 20... the second I turn 21 I will be buying all the anti wrinkle creams available!) this is one my mum got in one of the Clinique giftsets but it's working quite well so far, sometimes I get dry skin at the edge of my eye and I think it's helping with that. It's also more concentrated for the delicate eye area than just normal face moisturiser which is better, I have my eye on the Benefit It's Potent! eye cream next!
Sounds crazy but I never used to moisturise, I thought with my skin type it would do more harm than good but since I've started moisturising daily my skin has improved so much and I never get that horrible tight feeling anymore. My moisturiser of choice at the moment is the Olay essentials beauty fluid - A cult beauty favourite which gives just the right amount of moisture. 
In the evenings to remove my makeup I use the Garnier Micellar water - This stuff is AMAZING makes your skin feel so clean after and doesn't irritate or give you that horrible greasy feeling so many other makeup removers do! Next on my list to try is Bioderma for sure! 

Do you use any of these products? What do you think?

Max Factor Facefinity All Day Primer Review

Max Factor Facefinity All Day Primer Review Swatch Makeup

It's not often I get sent random makeup in the post so when I received this I was confused but remembered that a couple of months ago I had requested a sample of it from the website supersavvyme, who doesn't like the chance to try new makeup!

Using a primer can completely change the way you wear your makeup and the way you think about a product, you might hate a foundation and find it doesn't last that long but adding a good primer to your routine can transform this and you might end up loving it!

When it comes to primers I haven't really strayed far from my Benefit Porefessional as I've always found it's worked perfectly for me but as I'm coming to the end of my most recent tube this tester came just in time. Having not tried many drugstore primers I was interested to see the results next to some high end favourites.

This Primer has quite a creamy texture, almost like moisturiser/lotion which shocked me a little as I'm used to using something more silicone based but worked really well on my dry areas of skin and felt hydrating :) although as it's a more liquid type texture it doesn't do an as good job at blurring pores. I definitely feel like it helped my makeup last longer and gave it a much smoother texture and overall finish. For a drugstore Primer it is a little pricey at £10.99 but I think it's worth using one if you don't already as it can really enhance your makeup and improve it's staying power!

Lush Tea Tree Water & Ultrabland Cleanser

lush skincare ultrabland tea tree water review acne

Recently I've been trying to adapt my skincare routine to something that works. I've replaced my makeup wipes with micellar water and harsh alcohol based cleansers for much more naturally infused products. I've worked out that for all these years my skin is actually extremely sensitive and I really haven't been looking after it like I should. After a doctor telling me to not moisturise after going there for my skin acting up about three years ago I didn't touch any until earlier this year and I now can't be without it - Just because your skin is oily you still need to moisturise!
The last couple of months however the actual condition is best described as combination so I wanted a routine to compliment that and make sure every last pixel of makeup is taken off before sleep too!

After heading into Westfield's Lush store I was introduced to Ultrabland, the no 1 product the Lush founders couldn't be without. As well as a cleanser you can also use it to soothe raw or sore skin after waxing or shaving thanks to the Almond Oil & Beeswax in it - A product with more than one use is always a plus! It's extremely gentle and soft, makes sure to get your makeup off and there's no alcohol or horrible chemicals added!

After deciding on that cleanser I was next introduced to the Toner Waters; Tea Tree, Breath of Fresh Air & Eau Roma water I explained to the lady how my skin was quite oily at the moment and she suggested to start off with the Tea Tree, then once my skin had changed move onto Breath of Fresh Air then Eau Roma, which seems to make sense. In the last week of using it my skin doesn't get so shiny during the day and I love how easy it is to spritz on after coming out of the shower, it's so refreshing!

I'm excited to see how these products work over the next month but so far there working very well for me, I don't get the tight dry feeling after cleansing any more and really feel like more natural ingredients are the way forward for skincare!

What Lush skincare products have you tried before? What would you recommend?

Ikea Malm Dressing Table

All I have ever wanted is a perfect white glossy dressing table that has enough storage for my rapidly expanding makeup collection (..and that can fit in my difficult sized room). The writing desk/makeup bag/stuff in random boxes set up was just not working anymore and I wanted something that I could organise efficiently!

I'd been searching for ages watching loads of room tours on youtube and reading blog posts for inspiration and finally came across the Malm dressing table from Ikea. The first thing that drew me to it was it's simple design and sleek top the price point of only £95 makes it also the best bargain!

The most useful point I find is the glass top as if you get any makeup on it you can easily just wipe away and its shiny again. Personally as it's not that wide I've found it fits in my room perfectly but also has enough space on top to store my two mirrors, brushes and excess makeup which won't fit in the drawers!

The drawer is almost the same width as the whole unit itself which allows you to fit in almost anything you could think of. As my my main aim was organised makeup I picked up a couple of cutlery organisers which fit perfectly in and I now find it so much easier to find what I'm looking for! The two brush pots are both from Dunelm and the big mirror is from Argos
, which I find useful as it allows you to see the sides of your head when doing your hair!

To add a little more personality and cosiness I draped some simple fairy lights over the top and a couple of candles :)

How do you organise your makeup? ♡

What happens at a Benefit Cosmetics Audition?

After scouring the internet and reading every possible blog or forum post on the subject I thought I would write my own to add to the collection, especially as I hadn't come across any written more recently than summer 2013.

I'm going to assume that if you're reading this post then you're either about to have an audition yourself or you're just researching the whole interview process, either way - you probably want to apply in one way or another ;)

Benefit are extremely different in the way they recruit compared to other beauty/makeup counters. There are two ways you can apply - either looking on their careers page or attending an recruitment/open day. My journey actually started five months ago in January where I decided to attend an open day, I was torn between travelling to London or another nearby county as there was none being held in my own area (despite there being 3 counters locally they are all quite small) so decided to go to the one in the nearby county as I thought the London ones may be too busy for me to even try and stand out.

The basic way that Benefit asses you are (this is from my research of other blog/forum posts):

Recruitment day -> Face to Face Interview -> Pass? Audition -> Pass? Final Interview

Apply online -> Phone Interview -> Pass? Audition -> Pass? Final interview

I actually ended up having to a combination of all of these. After putting on my best Benebabe face I headed to the Recruitment day bright & early arrived at 10:30 saw the competition and was brought up with ALOT of girls, I was quite intimidated as there was a group next to me who all seemed to know each other from working at other counters and having their beauty courses together. After a wait I was taken into a room with other people being interviewed by other people at the same time and was asked the usual questions... Why Benefit? What are you doing now? What are your favourite products? I was then told I had passed...phew buuuut then came the 'I'll get the Area manager to get in touch when there is a vacancy for an audition' now I had prepared myself to have an audition that afternoon if I had passed so was a little let down as I had read how Benefit are quite bad at ever getting in touch. I'm still not completly sure if my details were ever passed on...

Fast forward to now where I'd managed to get myself a job in children's fashion retail. Still browsing the job sites looking for any beauty vacancies I saw one for my local Benefit counter and applied and didn't expect them to even take a look. A couple of weeks later as I arrived home from work I was invited to an audition.

Now the it or hate it the main aim of this is not how well you apply makeup, it's to do with your approach and interaction with customers and most of all, the selling. This is why you need a retail background and you HAVE to be able to have no shame when it comes to approaching strangers and asking them if they would like a free makeover or if they have heard of Benefit before. I am in no way the most confident person in the world, in fact every single school report had always mentioned how quiet/shy I was but when it comes down to working in a sales environment I can quickly turn that off and I believe that you will be able to do that too, you just have to fake it til you make it afterall! :)

I arrived at 10:30 dressed all in black and met three other girls the area manager then took us into a room out the back , we introduced ourselves, it was very informal, then practiced some traffic stopping techniques (this was hilarious, but also 100% harder than doing it on the shop floor, so if you can do this you'll have no problem in real life!) then we were spoken to about the products we would be demonstrating (It's Potent, The Porefessional, High/Sun Beam, Benetint, Hoola Bronzer, They're Real) unlike other auditions i've read about, this was lighthearted, the 'magic formula' 'pushy sales techniques' or 'cheesy tag lines' were not mentioned or used and most of all, the area manager was lovely, not sickly sweet and fake. Next we had to apply the products onto one another, this was probably the most difficult part I found as you're just getting used to all the products and the hygiene standards and how to apply them, but don't worry you can just have a laugh with your partner. (Side note: I found out that Benetint does not suit me in any shape or form, especially paired with Hoola :| )

Traffic Stopping Tips

  • Approach ANYONE no matter the age, Benefit has products to suit absolutley any age range or skin type, even the older lady like a bit of highlighter and it's good to get some eye cream starting young! (Even the guys are a fan of bronzer ;) )
  • We were told not to take no for an answer and how to get around this, for example if someone says their busy, ask why? or say you wont be long, or how you just want to show them one product - most of the time they will end up staying longer. Do not take 'we have no time' for an answer, you can always tailor your next line and you WILL be able to convince them.
  • If you can tell that someone REALLY won't come with you, just tell them to have a nice day and move on as quick as possible, I can't stress how important it is to constantly be looking for someone, eventually someone will join you.
  • The first couple of clients you get, you will be nervous, repeating yourself and be a bit stuck on what to say, but thats natural - by the third you will be a pro and feeling like you actually work there!
I found that the time spent traffic stopping (about two hours) went so fast! I was even finishing my last client this adorable older lady and another of the auditionees complimented her on her makeup (post makeover) which I hope the area manager heard ;) In total I sold two products; it's potent & the porefessional another girl sold two items, one sold one and the other girl sold 0. Another thing I thought might happen which was my worst nightmare was that you could get sent home if it wasn't for you or they didn't think you fit right but I think to have that effect you would have to literally not approach anyone and I think if you've got to the audition phase, you obviously really want to work for Benefit and therefore everyone in my audition was really determined to go and find people! 

We were then taken to the back room again and told that we would be contacted about availability or opening spots :) I'm not 100% sure what this actually means but either way I'm really pleased I went as I really enjoyed it and it's helped me realise that I'd love to spend time putting makeup on peoples faces everyday and it's actually soo satisfying to be set a goal (to sell certain products) and actually hit these targets! 

I hope this post helps anyone with an audition soon, if you have any questions please leave them below as I'd be happy to answer :)

updated - I passed this stage and am just waiting for a vacancy to come up in my area :) 

Coconut Oil Benefits

As I've recently been turning to more natural remedies for my beauty and health choices coconut oil seems to be the one product you can pretty much use for everything. I've really loved using it as a deep conditioner and leaving in my hair overnight, when you wash it out the texture of your hair is smooth, glossy and there are almost no tangles to be found. Body and lip moisturisation is another benefit and it can even be used to take your eye makeup off! Another use I'm currently exploring is oil cleansing of your skin - Fighting oil with yet more oil? Seems bad right? Apparently not, they are both supposed to cancel each other out but we we see the progress of that one. So far it seems to have calmed down my combination skin quite a bit within the space of three days, so fingers crossed.

The oil that I picked up was from Holland & Barratt, they seem to have a couple of brands which are all under £15 which for such a multi-use product that will last you ages it's completely purse friendly too! You can also purchase on ebay here.

What uses have you found for coconut oil? ♥

DIY: Lemon & Baking Soda Face Scrub

In the last week for whatever reason my skin has been going a little crazy and I was getting quite sick of it, with no money to spend on any new product to help me with this I decided to search for some little easy DIY face masks that could be made from things in the kitchen cupboards!

I had heard of baking soda and lemon being used to whiten teeth before so when I read about it being used as a face scrub/mask my first thought was ouchhh! But surprisingly it doesn't burn or tingle that badly, atleast you can feel it working!

All you have to do is take a bowl and a couple of tablespoons of baking soda, then squeeze about two teaspoons of lemon juice all over and mix it up. It will most likely foam up but this is just the reaction of the two ingredients. The first time I did this I found it quite hard to apply as a face mask but found using it to exfoliate in circular motions around my face was a much better method, but you can do whatever suits you best. I must admit the first time my combination skin was left quite red after the first try but I covered my face in moisturiser after washing off, so it's good to keep that in mind if your skin is on the sensitive side.

I'm really loving using more natural products lately, reading the chemical lists in a lot of skin products can be extremely confusing and I'm not sure if we really know what half of them even are! This costs a fraction of the price of the products you see in Boots & Superdrug so you should definitely have a go if your skin is behaving badly!

Hello again...

It's been almost two years since I wrote a blog post how crazy!
As much as I love love love makeup and how it can completely change the way you look the career prospect is something that is extremely daunting and new to me, and however many books or lessons you attend I'm not sure if it's a long term option. It's one thing to put makeup on yourself and a completely other game on someone else. I wanted to create this blog to have a selection of everything beauty and makeup related with maybe a little bit of lifestyle mixed in. I've been a beauty blog reader for probably over six years now and I wanted to create somewhere I could write my thoughts and inspiration down without driving my friends & family crazy. I hope if you're reading this you enjoy and please feel free to let me know your blog links down below, I always like a read of something new :)