L’Oreal Volume Million Lashes So Couture – Review

lorealvolumesocouture

Volume Million Lashes So Couture from L’Oreal is such a well rated mascara that I knew I needed to try it. I picked this up from Boots for £9.99 and have been testing it for around a month now.

The brush on this wand is a plastic wand with soft, flexible bristles. I’m pretty aggressive with my mascara application and occasionally have the odd brush in eye situation, but I still haven’t had that with this product. The formula is jet black, creamy and buildable.

LOREALVOLUMESOCOUTURE

After a full days wear there is still a lot of curl and absolutely NO smudging which is really important for me. Furthermore it doesn’t sting my eyes which I’ve had with a number of other mascaras.

Positives

  • Buildable volume
  • Comfortable wand that doesn’t poke the eye
  • No need to wipe of excess
  • Does not run, smudge or flake
  • Lashes feel soft to the touch
  • Does not sting when you rub your eyes

Negatives

  • Can transfer onto the lid during application. Tip: tilt head backwards during application
  • Not the most amount of lengthening, volume or curl I’ve had from a mascara

Overall, this is a great mascaras you can pick up for under a tenner in terms of ease of application and results. However, I’m not sure I would buy it again as it isn’t as volumising as say the Maybelline Lash Sensational or as lengthening as Max Factor Masterpiece. This is a mascara I’d leave for work days as you get a good amount of volume and separation, no smudging and it’s comfortable to wear all day.

Have you tried this product before? Comment below and let me know!

Jay

Maybelline Lash Sensational (Waterproof Black and Black) – Review

maybellinelashsensational

This mascara requires no introduction. Ever since Lash Sensational by Maybelline first hit our shelves, every beauty blogger/vlogger has been raving about it. I held out for a while but decided to take the plunge and see if it lives up to the hype. I purchased the waterproof and normal version of this mascara from Boots for £7.99.

The wand for this mascara is made of plastic and is curved to mimic the shape of the eyes, so you can really get in right at the base of the eyelashes for maximum lift.

maybellinelashsensationalwand

Black 

When I first tried this mascara I have to admit I wasn’t a fan. I found that it gave a lot of lift and curl but the brush was difficult to use and gave a lot of clumping. Fast forward a few days, once I got my hands round using this brush, I found that it really is a fantastic mascara. It lifts right from the root elongating the lashes and gives a lot of curl for a fanned out effect. You can get 2 coats of this mascara on before it starts clumping. I found that this mascara stung a lot when I rubbed my eyes, so many not one for sensitive eyes. There was very, very little smudging by the end of the day (after a sweaty gym session), with no flaking AND the curl didn’t drop at all.

Waterproof Black

The formula of this mascara in’t great. I find it to be quite “sticky” and it clumps very easily. It’s difficult to apply more than one layer as it dries very hard and very quickly. Removal of this mascara is extremely difficult. Unfortunately this version smudges quite a bit and it flakes a little.

maybellinelashsensational

Overall verdict

It’s been around 2 weeks since I bought this mascara and I have to say I haven’t stopped using it. In my opinion the waterproof version is awful, it’s clumpy, smudges and flakes, so save your pennies on that and opt for the normal version. This mascara requires some practice to get used to the brush but once you’ve mastered it is indeed a “sensational” mascara. I would go as far as saying this matches my holy grail mascara and I will be repurchasing it for sure.

Jay x

Dior Diorskin Airflash Spray Foundation (400 Honey) – Review

diorairflashfoundation

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.

diorairflash
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!

diorairflash

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!

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.

DSC00490

diorshowmascara
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

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.

DSC00149

DSC00151

Jay x

 

Max Factor Masterpiece Mascara – Review

maxfactor

If it is length you seek, then look no further. Max Factor Masterpiece Mascara is designed to add definition and length to your lashes to frame the eyes beautifully. I bought this mascara for £9.99 from Superdrug where there were 4 colours to choose from, including Brown, Black, Waterproof Black and Rich Black. I opted for the Rich Black colour.

The brush for this mascara is made of plastic and the wand itself is very thin with short bristles. The formula of the mascara is in between wet and dry so it doesn’t weigh down the lashes and the colour dries to a true deep black. I also like that when I take the wand out of the tube I don’t have to wipe off any excess.

IMG_3355

In terms of application, this isn’t a mascara that I can use every day as it takes forever to apply. You have to keep applying the mascara to fully coat the lashes and it is difficult to apply without getting onto the top lid near the root of the hairs. However, the length that you get with this mascara is phenomenal, it honestly makes me look like I have eyelash extensions in. The brush also manages to pick up all the little lashes making them appear more defined and longer. I didn’t get a whole lot of volume with this mascara and after the second coat I found that my lashes looked very clumpy. I had to go back with an eyelash comb to brush out the clumps as well as clean my eyelid with a Q-Tip.

maxfactor

Over the course of the day this mascara didn’t smudge but it flaked a lot which is a massive nuisance. I found that it also held the curl really well. Removal of this mascara is quite difficult as it has a very dark pigment that just clings to the skin so you have to use a good oil based cleanser to get every last bit of colour off. All in all this is a good mascara, it truly defines and lengthens your lashes like it promises but it is very high maintenance, which may not be so good for those who want something that is quick to apply and remove.

Anastasia Beverly Hills DipBrow Pomade – Review

IMG_3280

After years of over plucking our brows many of us (including myself) weren’t ready for the fuller brow trend. DipBrow from Anastasia is one of the most popular products from last year since the eyebrow craze took over as it promises to transform those little sparse hairs above your eyes into brows that even Brooke Shields would envy.

Dipbrow pomade is described as an eyebrow colour used to sculpt brows which glides on effortlessly and stays on even against heat and oiliness. Anastasia Beverly Hills is not readily available in the UK but luckily there are a few online stores like BeautyBay (they delivered my package the very next day with no delivery cost) who stock this brand. DipBrow comes in 11 different shades to match different hair colours from light blonde to jet black.

When choosing a colour I knew that I didn’t want anything too dark as dark brows don’t look good next to my small eyes. There are quite a few brown shades to choose from, In the end I opted for Ash Brown. From the swatch below you can tell it’s a very cool brown shade and is perfect for shaping my brows for a natural daytime look. I think I’m going to purchase the colour “Chocolate” next, for when I want my brows to have a bit more drama.

IMG_3343

This product is best applied with an angled eyeliner brush. I find the consistency to be very smooth and moussey. I was under the impression that this would be very difficult to use and actually I couldn’t be more wrong. All it takes is a few swipes of this product to shape and fill in my brows. I use concealer afterwards to clean up any mistakes. Admittedly I’m not great at shaping my brows in general, but they’re meant to be sisters, not twins…right?

AnastasiaDipBrowPomade

The staying power of this is incredible. It lasts all day even with my greasy T-zone, humidity and water. Impressively, when I rub my fingers over this lightly it doesn’t budge. Removal is easy with an oil based make-up remover.

Overall, for £15, this brow product is a great investment. It is great if you do not have any eyebrows as it allows you to create a new shape but also great if you just want to perfect and fill in your brows. The ease of application along with the staying power truly makes it one of the greatest brow products and it wholly deserves its beauty cult status.

Jay x

L.A. Girl Pro-Conceal HD High Definition Concealer – Review

IMG_3285

Gone are the days when I used to turn my nose up at drug-store or high street concealers. This concealer is something I’ve seen pop up quite a few times around the internet but being in the UK I never thought to investigate into the product. I did however do some research recently and decided to purchase this online from an Ebay seller for just £4.99. My package arrived within 2 working days and in brand new packaging.

Pro-conceal from L.A. Girl is a medium and buildable coverage concealer that is supposed to camouflage imperfections and minimise the appearance of fine lines. There are a massive 24 colours to choose from so it covers a wide range of skin tones, I opted for Medium Beige as this is what other women of my colouring (NC44) recommended. You get 8g of product which by comparison is more than my Maybelline Fit Me concealer.

The packaging of this concealer isn’t my favourite, I prefer doe-foot applicators for concealers, this one however comes with a squeezy tube and a brush tip. Application is smooth and creamy, I like to blend this in with my ring finger. I am really impressed with the coverage of this concealer, it actually managed to mask my dark circles pretty well, almost as well as my MAC Pro-Longwear concealer. I also found that it didn’t crease into my expression lines and photographs beautifully which is a big plus. The colouring is perfect for my skin tone, it isn’t too pink and just the right amount of orange to counteract darkness under the eyes.

IMG_3287

IMG_3286

LAGirlProConceal

Over the course of the day this concealer held up really well, it faded a tiny bit and I did find that it clinged to dry patches so it is important to wear a hydrating cream underneath it. For such a cheap product this is really, really impressive, so impressive that I’m looking to purchase some other colours for highlighting/contouring purposes. Bravo L.A. Girl, bravo!

IMG_3297

Me wearing the L.A. Girl Pro-conceal, looking rather pleased with myself haha!

Jay x

Paula’s Choice Resist Ultra-Light Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum – Review

IMG_3247Paula’s Choice is one of my favourite skincare brands. I like Paula’ Choice because the ingredients they use in each product are all backed by science. Having a science background myself I can’t tell you how impressed I am to have found a company that actually consults and refers to scientific journals to choose what ingredients they should be including in their products.

Free radicals are present within the body as well as in the environment. They can damage protein structures in the skin like collagen through a process of oxidation. There are a number of foods which are high in antioxidants that can slow down this process and it is important to consume a good amount of this in your diet. However, it is also important for your skincare to contain some antioxidants to combat the free radicals in the atmosphere.

Resist Ultra-Light Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum is supposed to balance oily skin and prevent the signs of ageing whilst also reducing signs of redness. It is packed with antioxidants and hydrating ingredients to help fight environmental damage. I have been using this serum since December as my daytime serum under my moisturiser and I’m around two thirds of the way through finishing it, so a single tube should last 6 months if used once per day, 3 months if used twice. I bought this product online from the Paula’s Choice website for £30.

Packaging: The serum comes in a 30ml opaque tube with a nozzle tip, this allows the antioxidants to remain stable without light and air exposure.

Formula: This has a number of amazing ingredients in it. It’s built around water and silicone slip agents but contains a cocktail of 6 antioxidants including Vitamin C and E, cell communicating ingredients and Hyularonic Acid which is one of my favourite ingredients to hydrate the skin (the molecule holds 10x it’s weight in water!). It is also colour and fragrance free making it suitable for sensitive skin. It is aimed at combination to oily skin as it is a lightweight formula.

Texture and appearance: This serum is clear with a slight yellow tint. I use around a 5p coin size for my whole face by warming it up within my palms and patting it into the skin. It has a really slippery texture and absorbs into the skin within seconds. I LOVE that it is safe to use around the eye area!

IMG_3248

Feel: My skin is left feel really soft and smooth after this product has absorbed into the skin. There is no sticky residue and it actually makes a great make-up base. My skin also looks more plump immediately after applying this serum because it is very hydrating. I use this underneath my SPF moisturiser.

This is a holy grail daytime serum for me, for the nighttime I like to use something a little heavier and moisturising. This serum doesn’t exacerbate my oiliness and hasn’t caused any reactions or breakouts. It has kept my skin hydrated and I feel confident knowing that my skin is being protected from free-radical damage. If you’re just starting to think about preventative measures you can take to protect your skin from the environment then this serum is a great place to start.

Jay x