MLBB – My Lips But Better Tag

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I was tagged by the lovely Stash Matters to do the “My Lips But Better” tag. For those who don’t know, as the name suggests, these are lip products that are a similar colour to your natural lip. By wearing such products it can bring out your lip shape, brighten your complexion and make you look more put together, without looking made up. I think the term “My Lips But Better” differs from person to person as we’ve all got different natural lip colours. I opted for a few that suit my colouring in particular.

1) Gerard Cosmetics 1995 – Warm brown with pink undertones, matte. I bought this lipstick just recently and I have to say I am OBSESSED with it. The colour warms up my complexion but I really think this will suit absolutely anyone.

2) MAC Mocha – Peach brown with yellow undertones, satin. Finding nudes for darker skin is especially difficult so when I found Mocha I was hooked. This is a natural peachy brown that is slightly more orange than 1995 and it really makes my lips look plump and full.

3) Bobbi Brown Rose – Medium rose, satin. This lipstick is one of my all time favourites. It is the perfect neutral pink that is lovely to wear during the daytime or if you want to go for that “no make-up, make-up” look.

4) MAC Twig- Pink with brown undertones, satin. Twig is a very popular bridal colour because of its neutral pink colouring. Some may find this colour a little too brown, but personally I love it for a MLBB look.

I’m not sure the pictures really capture the colours that well as they are all quite similar but I hope you can tell the slight differences between the lipsticks.

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This is a really fun post to do as I’ve been loving MLBB lipsticks recently. I tag the following people to do this post, I look forward to seeing your picks!

Tatum Writes

My Budget Beauty

Jay x

Clinique High Impact Mascara – Review

High Impact Mascara

Recently I got a sample of the High Impact mascara from Clinique, this is an extremely well reviewed mascara so I was interested to see how it’d hold up. Taken from the Clinique website: “High Impact Mascara is a multi-benefit mascara that adds maximum volume with definition and length. Specially developed brush and formula work together to dramatically thicken lashes while separating.”

The full size of this mascara retails for £17.50 so I had high expectations for it. It has a thin brush wand that is easy to maneuver and work into the lashes. I found the formula to be extremely smooth and didn’t experience any clumping after two coats, the colour is also very dark. As with all Clinique products it doesn’t contain any fragrance making it suitable for sensitive eyes or contact lens wearers.

Unfortunately I didn’t find that this mascara lifted my lashes to give it the curl I’m used to. There wasn’t much volume or length either. It gave very natural looking lashes but honestly that’s not what I’m looking for in a mascara and it definitely isn’t “high-impact”. I have very oily lids so it’s important for a mascara to be able to withstand that. Unfortunately after 4 hours or so I experienced a lot of smudging on the outer corner of my eyes.

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I’m really disappointed with this mascara, it is in no way better than any of the drug store mascaras I’ve tried and considering its price point I think it’s worse. I’m not sure why this was so highly rated, I suppose different products work differently for everyone. I myself will not be purchasing the full version.

Have you tried this mascara before? Did it work for you or did you have the same experience as me? Comment below and let me know.

Jay x

Gerard Cosmetics First Impression

DSC00567 Hey lovelies! So I was actually meant to be on a no-buy because I spent my shopping allowance in the first week after payday BUT BeautyBay recently had a buy one get one half price sale on Gerard Cosmetics and I thought it’d be a great opportunity to give their products a try. Gerard Cosmetics is quite a new cosmetics brand and recently became really popular because of their collaboration with Youtuber Jaclyn Hill.

One of the most raved about products from their line is the lipstick called “1995” from the Jaclyn Hill collection. I’m a bit obsessed with pinky brown lips at the moment so I knew I wanted to try this colour. I’ve also been searching for a peach lipgloss so I chose the Color Your Smile Lighted Lip Gloss in “Salmon”. The products are a little cheaper than MAC priced at £11.50 for a lipstick and £15 for a gloss.

When I received the products the first thing that struck me was the packaging. The lipstick comes in a gorgeous gold bullet which looks classy and expensive. What really impressed me though is the lipgloss, not only does it look awesome but it has a mirror on the outside on the tube and two tiny lights in the top that light up when you open the tube making it easy to apply in dim lighting.

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I am absolutely in love with the lipstick 1995, the colour is a really warm pink-brown, sort if like a warmer version of “Twig” by MAC. The formula is matte but comfortable. It lasts around 4 hours on the lips before reapplication is needed. The only thing I don’t like is the strong Camphor smell in the lipstick which can drying some peoples lips. The Salmon lipgloss has the most incredible formula I have tried so far. It is highly pigmented but really moisturinsing. Also NO stickiness! I love wearing this on its own or layered with a peach/brown lipstick.

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Gerard Cosmetics 1995 on the left and MAC Twig on the right
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Gerard Cosmetics Color Your Smile Lighted Lip Gloss in Salmon

Overall I’m really happy with my first Gerard Cosmetics purchases and will be looking into buying some more of their products, especially the glosses. Have you tried anything from Gerard Cosmetics before? Comment below and let me know. Jay x

Dior Diorskin Airflash Spray Foundation (400 Honey) – Review

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When I first laid eyes on this foundation I knew I had to try it. Dior Airflash is one of the first spray foundations to enter the market. The spray mechanism is said to give the skin an airbrushed effect. It is meant for all skin types and is said to give a satin-matte finish with buildable coverage.

I popped into House of Fraser on Oxford Street for a colour match for this foundation. There are nine colours to pick from. The lady at the Dior counter used this cool attachment on an iPhone to find my match, she chose the darkest part of my face, which is my chin, and matched it to 400 Honey. It’s an okay colour match but I find the colouring a bit too cool for the warm undertones in my skin. A 70ml can of this foundation costs £33.50 and I got a free sample of mascara too, not to mention some amazing customer service!

Packaging: I believe the spray can is more than just a gimmick. The foundation doesn’t have light and air exposure and is hygienic as you’re not touching the nozzle. You also get 70ml of product in this foundation which is a lot more than the generic 30ml you get with others. I’ve read that if used everyday a single can will last up to 5 months. This foundation is not recommended for air travel as pressurised cans may explode.

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Dior Airflash Foundation 400 Honey

Formula: This foundation is very thin and watery in consistency, it contains silicones making it feel slippery and extremely light on the skin. The formula seems like a decent one for combination or oilier skin. I wouldn’t say this is suitable for very dry skin as it doesn’t contain many emollient ingredients but if worn with a heavy moisturiser it could work. The only bad thing in my opinion is that like many perfume houses Dior insists on adding fragrance into the formula which can be an irritant for sensitive skin. There is also no SPF which means you will get no flashback from it but will have to wear a separate SPF if worn during the daytime.

With this being an aerosol can it contains Butane in the formula therefore it is really important to maintain a distance of at least 8 inches between your face and the nozzle to allow the Butane to dissipate into the air. I’m sure the levels of Butane are safe enough to use on the face but if this is a cause of concern for you it’s best to spray the foundation onto a brush and apply in that way.

Application: Application of this foundation takes less than 30 seconds. It can be sprayed directly onto the skin in a Z-formation or onto a stippling brush and buffed into the skin. Using a beauty sponge is not advised it will absorb all of the product. I find that when spraying directly on the face the product can go to waste and I need to protect my clothes and hair which can be a hassle, but the airbrush effect I get makes my skin look luminous and healthy. When applied with a brush the coverage is higher and more matte. The scent smells like expensive perfume and is quite apparent at the beginning but disappears after it sets. It also feels really cooling when applied to the skin.

Finish: When first applied the foundation appears very dewy and shiny on the skin. However it dries quickly to a luminous matte finish that is flawless and skin like. The coverage is sheer-medium but you can easily build it up without looking cakey. The texture and feeling of this foundation is the lightest I’ve ever experienced, it doesn’t sink into your pores nor does it look cakey. Below is a picture of a very sleepy me wearing this foundation without and with flash, no filters or editing. I am wearing SPF which is why there is ashyness / flashback in that picture and I hadn’t powdered my face yet so it looks quite shiny!

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Longevity: I got some shine in the T-zone after the 5 hour mark and the foundation lasted around 8 hours with most fading around the nose, chin and forehead. I didn’t experience any oxidising of the colour. What’s nice about this foundation is that you can top up after a long day without it looking cakey. It requires an oil based cleanser to remove at the end of the day.

As a whole I like this foundation as I’ve been searching for a luminous glowy base that is suitable for my skin type. However, it isn’t one I would use every day due to the fragrance in the formula. I did actually experience a breakout on my cheeks after 6 days of wearing this but I can’t say it was due to this product specifically as I was testing other skincare as well. I think this is a great option for those with combination/oily skin who don’t suffer from sensitivity. It provides moderate coverage, oil control and a luminous finish without the heaviness of a full coverage foundation. I would say this foundation falls somewhere between Estee Lauder Double Wear and Nars Sheer Glow and in real life it doesn’t look like I have any make-up on at all, just healthy glowing skin.

I hope you found this review useful 🙂 Have you tried this foundation yet? Comment below and let me know!

MAC Twig, Verve and Mocha – Swatches & 300 Followers!

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Hello peeps! How you doing this Sunday? I’ve currently got a really bad neck pain so I’ve been out of action all day (cue Sopranos box set). I just wanted to say a massive thank you to everyone who is following my blog, this weekend I hit 300 followers! Thanks you, thank you, thank you! I’ve got so much appreciation for you all, this is an awesome community and I love the supportiveness of everyone I’ve met through this channel. I honestly didn’t think I’d get 10 followers let alone 300!

Anyway! I bought three new MAC lipsticks and I wanted to share the swatches with you. The three I purchased are Twig (Soft muted brownish-pink – satin finish), Verve (Muted brownish-plum – satin finish) and Mocha (Peachy yellow-brown – satin finish). I love how the MAC satin finish lipsticks feel on the lips, they glide on smoothly and don’t dry out the lips unlike some of the matte colours.

I mostly wanted to buy colours that I could wear to work so they are very muted and wearable shades for the daytime. Twig is your typical “my-lips-but-better” cool pink that everyone seems to be obsessed with. Verve is a darker plum colour with brown undertones, so again still wearable for the daytime and perhaps my favourite of the three is Mocha. I’d almost given up my search for the perfect “nude” lip for my skin tone but here it is! it is notoriously difficult to find a nude for darker skin that doesn’t wash us out completely, Mocha is dark and peachy enough to complement my warm dark skin tone – I love it!

Here are the swatches from left to right: Twig, Verve, Mocha in natural light and with flash.

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Twig, Verve, Mocha

Jay x

Dior Diorshow Mascara – Review

Hey guys time for some sample testing! I got a sample of this mascara from Dior when purchasing the Dior Airflash foundation (review to come soon). A full size of this mascara costs £22.50.

I have never purchased a high-end mascara so this is my first experience with one. My eyelashes are naturally thick and long so expensive mascara has never been a priority for me. Nonetheless, after my first high-end mascara experience I have to say I am pleasantly surprised.

The wand of this mascara is a thick and fluffy brush. The formula for this mascara is so smooth and the colour is jet black, there is a rose fragrance in the formula too. I love that it isn’t too wet or too dry which means you have quite a bit of time to work with it and it just glides onto the lashes. Usually I find that I get a bit of clumping with brush wands but I didn’t experience any of that after 2 coats of mascara. There was also no transfer to my top lid. This mascara added length, lots of volume, curl and it picked up the little lashes to add lots of drama and separation. It also had amazing longevity to survive a full day at work and a hardcore gym sesh without smudging, flaking and maintaining the curl.

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Diorshow Mascara, from top to bottom: Without mascara, 1 coat, 2 coats

So would I purchase the full version? To be honest whilst this did give me really good results, I know I can live without it and get away with cheaper mascaras. If you’re someone who requires a mascara to add volume, length and curl and have the budget to accommodate an expensive mascara I would really recommend it!

Jay x

Kevyn Aucoin The Celestial Powder (Candlelight) – Review

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I remember when I first swatched this product in Space NK and I literally thought to myself *aghhhhh I NEED this in my life*, the price tag of £35 put me off for sure, it is a tiny product, nonetheless it looked so good that I took the plunge and purchased it.

Celestial Powder comes in a few colour options, I chose “Candlelight” as it is a beautiful champagne colour that will suit all skin tones. Celestial Powder is described as a highlighter but I really think of it as a complexion enhancer. It doesn’t contain any visible shimmer or glitter, but has light reflecting pearl particles that gives the skin that candlelight, lit-from-within glow. It is truly a beautiful product that blends seamlessly and doesn’t look obvious on the skin but so very natural and pretty. I like the fact that there is no shimmer in this product making it suitable for the daytime and night.

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The packaging is super fancy and it even comes in its own little velvet pouch. The compact is only 0.11oz so it is a product that I save for special occasions only, it also has a mirror in the top making it good for touching up. I wish there was a little brush provided in the compact however. It is difficult to capture this swatch on camera but hopefully you can see what a nice finish it gives the skin.

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Celestial Powder has slowly become my favourite higlight overtaking theBalms Mary-Lou Manizer. Here are some pictures of me wearing this with my full make-up look, dusted on the high points of my cheek and down the centre of my nose.

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Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight Celestial Powder
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Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight Celestial Powder

 

Jay x

My Top 5 Spring / Summer Pink Lipsticks

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When the weather transitions into the warmer months I always feel a strong aversion to dark lips, seriously I don’t know what it is but I can’t bring myself to wear a red or burgundy when the sun is out.  I find that pink is such an easy colour to wear during the Spring and Summer, whether you’re going to school, work or out and about for the day and there really is a shade for everyone. These are a pick of my current favourite pink lipsticks.

DSC00173 1) Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Patina. I spoke about this lipstick in a recent post. This lipstick is your very on-trend, Kylie Jenner, mauve-pink matte shade, perfect for the daytime, lasts all day and looks gorgeous on practically everyone I’ve seen.

2) Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte Lipstick in Rose Culte. This is the most expensive lipstick that I own and it was worth every penny. This lipstick is a bright, bold fuchsia pink and is definitely not for those who want to hide in the shadows. The formula glides on smoothly and keeps my lips hydrated. The finish is shiny and as it causes a tingling sensation it makes my lips look even bigger and plump.

3) Bobbi Brown Lip Color in Rose. This is one of my all time favourite lipsticks. It is described as a medium rose which is a perfect brown-pink on my skin tone. I wear this if I’m pairing it with heavier eye make-up as it is a muted shade that doesn’t compete with the eyes. The finish isn’t quite matte and it is the best nude colour for my skin tone.

4) Kiko Milano Smart Lipstick in 913 Rosewood. This creamy, pigmented and affordable lipstick is one of my favourites to wear during the daytime. I feel like this colour would look good on all skin tones and in comparison it’s slightly darker than the Bobbi Brown lipstick. I love the  buttery application of this lipstick and the shine finish. It isn’t the longest lasting but it doesn’t cause any dryness which is a big plus.

5) Etude House Color Lips Fit in Perfect Fit Red. Don’t be fooled by the name, this lip tint is not red. It is a very dark pink and is perfect to wear opaque or as a light wash of colour on the lips with a matte finish. It also fades really nicely to leave a “just bitten” effect on your lips.

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Swatches of my favourite pink lipsticks in natural light and flash photography

Obviously I own a couple more pink lippies that didn’t make the cut and I’m always on the hunt for some more so comment below with your personal favourites!

Jay x

Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Foundation SPF 10 (4N2 Spiced Sand) – Review

esteelauderspicedsandI’ve been meaning to try Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation for ages because it has been all over the internet in the past few years. It is said to offer medium to full flawless matte coverage and is perfect for oily skin.

There are 30 different shades to choose from ranging from cool-neutral-warm tones which means your skin colour will most likely be catered to. The colour choice isn’t so straight forward however and the undertones are a little mixed up so I would recommend getting a few samples before purchasing it.  Initially I chose the colour 4W2 (NC45) which turned out to be a little too red/dark on my skin. 4W1 (NC42) was too ashy around my chin but matched my cheeks, so I opted for 4N2 which has a nice amount of yellow in it and it blends right into my skin. For reference I’m an NC44 in the MAC Studio Sculpt foundation or Syracuse in Nars Sheer Glow.

Packaging: At £29.50 this isn’t the cheapest foundation and I really expected there to be a pump on the top of this.  I hate using my fingers on foundation because it is so unhygienic! The bottle looks really nice nonetheless, it has that classic frosted glass with a gold top and for some reason reminds me of my mums foundations from the early 90’s.

Formula: This foundation is free of fragrance and contains a mineral sunscreen (Titanium Dioxide). The SPF isn’t high enough to be worn on its own so you will need to wear a sunblock underneath.

Appearance and Texture: When I first poured some of this on the back of my hand I couldn’t believe how lightweight it felt, it isn’t very viscous but provides a large amount of coverage. I do find that I have to apply small amounts at a time as it can set quickly. When I buff this into the skin or better yet use a beauty sponge, it gives such a smooth flawless finish! After one layer this foundation evens out my skin tone, covers blemishes, hyperpigmentation and scars. However, when I build it up it to full coverage it can look very cakey.

Longevity: The longevity of this product is probably its greatest selling point. It is one of those foundations that I can put on at 7 am and expect to look just as good as 7pm. There is a bit of fading around my nose area but overall it doesn’t move nor oxidise. I also find that it keeps my oiliness at bay, even my T-Zone isn’t as oily when using this. It’s important to note that if you have any dry patches this is going to cling onto those patches like a baby to his momma.

I love wearing this foundation for when I need my make-up to last all day and it has become a staple in my kit. It comes off only when I want it to, using an oil base cleanser. I’m really particular about trying out new foundations as they often break me out, but this hasn’t given me any reactions. If you would like flawless matte coverage that is long wearing and have oilier skin then this foundation is going to be a holy grail for you. The pictures below are of me wearing this foundation without and with flash.

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Jay x