Monday, 30 June 2014

Mac Mineralize Heat Element





This is the first time I have stepped into the world of Mac's Mineralize Eyeshadows and I managed to pick this up in a blog sale one of my friends had recently.
This one is called Heat Element and it is gorgeous. The top shadow is a rich, yellow gold and the bottom shadow is a rusty, brown and they complement each other perfectly.

Mineralize eye shadows can be used wet or dry but I personally think you get a much better pigmentation when used wet. In the swatch I applied these dry and in natural light. You can see how well they show up on my milk, white skin. I apply these using my base and crease Real Technique brushes and blend out with a sponge. The only problem I do find with these is that there is quite a bit of fall out so make sure you use some primer and hold a piece of tissue under your lower lashes when applying. 

You can pick these up for £16.50 and you get 2.2g of product so quite a bit more than a normal shadow. They come in Mac's signature black packaging with a flip lid. Inside the shadow is domed and the colours spilt.. just be careful as I've been told by a few people that these easily break. The shadows have convinced me to check out some more products from Mac's mineralize range. What would you recommend to try next?
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Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Seventeen Cheek Blush Stamp



I have had my eye on one of these for so long and then I won this in the lovely Bethany's giveaway on www.whatshedid.co.uk. I got the shade Made You Look which is a striking, hot pink and a shade I have never worn or thought to pick up. I'm a coral blush girl through and through but this has got me looking on the pinker side of life recently. 

The concept of this I find strange... who stamps their cheeks with colour other than scary clowns? Well now most of us do apparently because these are big news and are starting to get quite a fan base. The pan of blush is in the lid and the stamp end with the applicator is on a spring, there is also a mirror on the outside. I've been stamping this on and blending out with a separate sponge otherwise it's just too much. Because the stamp applicator is always on the blush pan there is a lot of product on it. 

The blush itself leaves a burst of barbie pink on my cheeks and it's very soft to touch, not cakey at all which is what I like! The wear time with this did impress me, maybe more due to the fact it's a brighter shade but it was still visible after a full day at work which I tend to find isn't the case with others I use. Am I a pink blush convert? Not quite yet, I still find myself reaching for my trusty coral but I am making more of an effort to branch out. Seventeen have some great shade ranges out since they've re-branded and a definitely one to look for when you're next in Boots.  

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Monday, 23 June 2014

Sephora Haul



Last week my beautiful best friend arrived back in the UK from her honeymoon in San Francisco, Hawaii & Las Vegas. And you know what holidaying in America means... Sephora! It pains me that Sephora is no longer in the UK as we use to have a large store in my local shopping center. Whoever decided to pull out of this country needs sacking. Wednesday evening the newlyweds came over with a bag of goodies for me from their travels and today I'm showing you the pieces Louise picked up in the mothership for me. 

The Sephora It Palette comes encased in python print and has a magnetic clasp to keep it secure. You get 12 shades, a primer, two highlighters, seven shadows, two eyeliner powders, eyeliner pencil and a double ended brush. The brush is really good quality and the precision end for eye liner is awesome for perfecting the lower lash line. The shades are beautiful, and I've been getting more adventurous and using the olive green and purple in the crease of my eye instead of my standard browns. The pencil is in Marron brown and makes the colour of my eyes really pop, it glides on the lid without tugging too. 

Next up are two of Sephora own Rouge Shine lipsticks in Latin Lover and Heartbreaker. I've wanted to try both of these colours for so long so when Louise text me for some ideas these were the first thing I said. They are both quite sheer but leave a moisturising finish on the lip with a burst of subtle colour. Latin Lover makes me feel really summery and I have been wearing it the last few evenings. Heartbreaker is a berry, purple. The colour isn't that intense but does make the lip warmer and this will be one I'll be getting more use out of going in to late September. 

I'm so happy with my Sephora gems, I can't wait to get to one myself in the near future!
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Thursday, 19 June 2014

Urban Decay Naked Palette


 
(L-R Virgin, Sin, Naked, Sidecar, Buck. Half Baked, Smog, Darkhorse, Toasted, Hustle, Creep, Gunmetal)
 
I jumped on the Naked palette rather late after my parents gifted me the beautiful Naked 3 for my birthday in the new year and since then my love has well and truly grown, from their flushed palettes to the Naked Basics, it was only fitting that I complete the whole set so today I bring the original Naked palette. 

The original Naked is a neutral girls dream palette. It comes with 12 shades.. shimmery neutrals right through to everything you need for that perfect smokey eye. The colours come encased in a velvet, oblong palette with a good sized mirror and a double ended make up brush. I personally love the brush that comes with these palettes and always use them. My only complaint is the packaging.. why oh why can't Urban Decay re-release this in the tin just like 2 and 3. Saying that if they do it anytime soon I'll be gutted I bought this one. 

I haven't stopped using this since I bought it, mainly Virgin all across the lid, Sidecar or Smog in the crease and Toasted or Hustle in the corners. I am yet to use Creep or Gunmetal, they're gorgeous shades but I'm not very good with a dark, smokey eye and tend to look like a stripper. The shadows are so creamy, and super blendable. I'm having a major love in with Urban Decay at the moment and wonder why it's taken me so long to really look into the brand. Next up the Naked 2 and the set is complete! 

What is your favourite Naked palette? 

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Wednesday, 18 June 2014

MAC Kelly Yum Yum





MAC Cosmetics have been churning out the collections recently, I could barely keep up but here I am again with another lipstick to show you. I should be stopped. After treating myself to Alluring Aquatics - Enchanted One and most recently Pedro Lourenco - Ruby, I said I wasn't going to get anything from the much anticipated Osbourne collection because nothing really jumped out at me. That was until I found myself at the MAC counter again and with this Kelly Yum Yum being the last in stock, I had to give it a new home.

I've always said I'm not into pink lipsticks but I've slowly managed to build up quite the collection. I've wanted Candy Yum Yum for while so this was an obvious choice for me as I really didn't think Riot House would suit me as it was described as a light, vivid orange and they were the only two left in stock unfortunately. The packaging is really cute too, the bullet shape we all know and love in a Lavender colour, just like Kelly Osbourne's hair, and her signature in red along the outside. 
This applies so smoothly leaving a burst of pink on the lips. It's a satin finish, so not as drying as the matte range but not too shiny, which is perfect for me as I'm a matte fan at heart. I wore this out last Friday and only had to re-apply a touch, once throughout the whole night; and that was after eating and a few too many drinks. It's not as bright and in your face as Candy Yum Yum, I tried my sister's to compare and I much prefer this formula and colour pay off. If only it wasn't limited edition. This is definitely my new go to shade for the summer. 

Did you get your hands on anything from the Osbourne collection before it sold out?
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Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Letterbox Cakes from Baker Days


If you follow me on Instagram (@alicespake) then you'll know I'm partial to a bit of baking. I love spending afternoons in the kitchen making different sponges, fairy cakes or brownies and then obviously eating it. A few weeks ago I had an email from the lovely guys at Baker Days asking if they could send me one of their letter box cakes to try and as I rarely get people making cakes for me I said yes straight away. 
The presentation of these is just out of this world. The Letter Box cake comes in a beautiful, vintage-esque tin, packed for freshness and with a tab and instructions on how to remove the cake. Inside the box it comes in, is also a card, balloons, candles and a party horn, which makes it so much more personal. You can have the cakes personalised for that special touch too so I chose a little image I had with my blog name on it as I just couldn't decide on a photo. 

The smell of the icing as you open the tin just hits you and smells so good, I couldn't wait to get stuck in. I chose just a plain sponge as my parents also had their eyes set on trying some of this. The sponge was still fresh and when pushed in, sprung back just like a perfect sponge cake should. I love the idea of this and it's perfect if you have a friend or loved one away at uni or not living as close. It comes in a box that fits straight through your letterbox so no annoying red slips from Royal Mail or re-delivery notices, and there are so many designs on their website. Make sure you check them out or give them a follow on Twitter too. 

*This was sent as a PR sample for review
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Monday, 16 June 2014

Beauty & Homeware Haul


So shopping happened again. If you follow me on Instagram (@alicespake) you would of seen some pictures from the weekend where I went down to Portsmouth to go shopping with Amy from amzyinwonderland.blogspot.co.uk. Our main reason for going to Gunwharf Quays was to finally visit The Cosmetic Company Outlet. They have it all, discounted MAC, Clinque, Smashbox, Bobbi Brown and many more. I was in MAC heaven.

First we stopped off at Lush where I picked up my all time favourite Bubble Bar Blue Skies and Fluffy White Clouds and a new Bath Ballistic, Think Pink to try. Next was The Body Shop, where I've re found a love for everything fresh and fruity. They had a 50% off sale on of left over Christmas stock so I got the Olive Shower Gels and body puff for just £3. 

Lastly is more MAC. I've never tried their nail polish before because there are so many fab high street alternatives but for £7, Saint Germain went straight in the basket along with an eye shadow called Yogurt which is a matte, pale pink. Both shades I don't have or usually use. The last thing I picked up is the Welcome sign in the top photo, we had a walk around Portsmouth's Historic Docks and stumbled into Nauticalia where this was just £2.99 and perfect for my little flat. 

What goodies have you bought recently? Let me know in the comments below, I read and reply to each one :)
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Friday, 13 June 2014

Real Techniques Retractable Lip Brush



I am a big fan of Real Technique brushes. They're fab quality, reasonably priced and are pleasing on the eye so when the retractable brushes launched I wondered off to my local Boots to get my hands on more brushes. Because you always need more right?! My most recent purchase is the Retractable Lip Brush to help me perfect that cupids bow I'm dying to get right.

The Lip Brush is from the Real Techniques setting/finish range and comes in a striking pink. I love how all their brush colours determine what they are meant for and makes it much easier to shop. The brush comes in a pointed shape with their signature white tipped bristles. The shape of the brush makes creating that perfect pout even easier with your favourite  lipstick or stain. Plus you can carry it with you without ruining the brush with a transparent, pink lid. There are two other brushes available in retractable range, Bronzer and Kabuki which I'm yet to pick up. 

If you haven't tried Real Techniques before then get yourself to Boots and pick up your first brush, you can also read my reviews of the Powder BrushBlush Brush, Expert Face Brush and Setting Brush

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Thursday, 12 June 2014

Ruby // Pedro Lourenco for MAC



I occasionally stalk the American MAC website to see what is going to be gracing our shores and found the Pedro Lourenco collection and fell a little in love. Pedro Lourenco is a Brazilian fashion designer, you can view his latest collection on PedroLourenco.com where there are some beautiful pieces. After my tweet from the gorgeous Anoushka from anoushkaloves.com to let me know it was on the UK website I went and made an order. I restrained myself and just chose one lipstick, meet Ruby, the newest lipstick to the collection.

I have numerous red lipsticks but nothing quite like this. Ruby comes in an Amplified finish and is described as a mid-tone blue red. The packaging comes in MAC's signature, bullet casing but this has a velvety soft feel to it, just like the Viva Glam Rihanna. I've only had this for a week and have worn it twice now, it glides effortlessly onto my lips and leaves a vibrant, burst of red. It's so creamy and easy to apply.  I had around 3-4 hours wear time with this, including eating and drinking. It feels second nature to go off to the toilet to touch up your make up, so reapplying doesn't bother me too much. I'm starting to really love the Amplified finish so any suggestions would be much appreciated. There are three more shades available,  Peach Beige, True Red and Roxo so if you're quick you may even manage to bag one for yourself. 
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Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Garnier Shine Control Moisturiser


I've been trying different moisturisers the last few months to find the perfect one but with so many new releases being churned out I want to try them all. The one being used at the moment is Garnier Pure Long Lasting Shine Control Moisturiser. Phew. Long name. I get quite a shiny t-zone which I've mentioned before so anything that says shine control is going to trap me into a purchase. This is around £3.. I picked this up in the chemist I work in and have tried looking on the Boots website for it but couldn't find it. But if shine is a problem for you, keep an eye out.

I've been using this in the mornings after using my eye cream and serum as it just sets my skin before applying my make up. I'm a big fan of Garnier skin care and have been for years, this is definitely one of those gems to look out for. After application you can feel your skin turn matte, it's odd but it does the trick for the oily skinned. I wouldn't recommend this for dry or combination skin as it might just dry you out. I haven't had a reaction to this since I've been using it and it smells really fresh which is perfect for using in the morning. 
If you want something to combat that 4 o'clock shine this is the moisturiser for you!

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Sunday, 8 June 2014

Primark Homeware Haul


This is a very different post from me today but I thought I'd put it out there as I love reading other blogger's home hauls and as a few you may know, Arran and I moved into a new flat at the beginning of April. I've been picking up random bits here, there and everywhere recently. I've dragged him to Ikea, Debenhams, BHS, The Range and Primark on numerous occasions. 

The above homeware haul is all from that little shop we all love, Primark. This store is a homeware cave, they sale some gorgeous bits and pieces for a fraction of the price of most on the high street. I only went in to get some new sheets as we had, had a new bed delivered that morning, next thing I know, I couldn't hold everything I had picked up and was heading to the till. 

I love Primark for sheets and bedding because they are good quality and such a bargain at just £7. I bought just a plain white sheet and a lavender sheet. I came across these shabby chic baskets which was just what I was looking for to store all my Lush bubble bars in, I now keep the smaller one on my bedside table with S&G Hand Food, lip balm and other essentials inside. These were just £8 for the two. Two Vanilla room vapourisers went into the basket, one each for the bedroom and living room for just £1, and a new bath mat.

Lastly was the adorable cushion for just £4. I saw a girl walking around with it so went and tracked one down. It has the definition of a hug on it and I thought it would be perfect to go on the bed. I love cushions like this and have different ones scattered in the living room and bedroom. 

What homeware pieces have you picked up recently?

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Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Decleor - The Products



If you read this blog regularly you'll have seen my previous posts, Decleor Skincare Brand Focus and Decleor Facial Experience; you'll know that I've been having a bit of a love in with Decleor in recent months. Decleor is a French, professional skin care brand and this post is going to be on what I've been using and loving the last few months. 

Micellar Oil - £25
Decleor Micellar Oil is their most recent product and as I love a good micellar water I was looking forward to trying this in oil form. This removes make up and grime so easily and it did leave my skin feeling so clean but I felt really oily. I probably should of realised this from the name but I didn't think it would be as oily as it was. 

Aroma Lisse 2-In-1 Dark Circle & Eye Wrinkle Eraser - £32
What a long name! I loved using this, it smelt fresh, didn't irritate my eyes and due to its yellow colour it also corrects and brightens the eye area. 

Aromessence Ylang Ylang Night Balm - £32.50
Out of all the products I've tried this night balm is my favourite. It's thick and so moisturing. It soaks into your skin through the night. Imagine soemthing dripping through a colander until its all gone and that's what this does. This is to re-balance oily skin types. 

Aromessence Ylang Ylang Purifying Serum - £44
The purifying serum works as skin booster and also tightens the appearance of pores. I can't say I noticed a difference as I just had a sample of this but it did make my skin feel smoother, quite quickly. 

Aromessence Neroli Night Balm - £32.50
Another night balm but with a different ingredient, still works the same as the above one but I'm not as keen on this as I don't like the smell of Neroli. This hydrates and aims to revive tired looking skin, it's also one of their bestsellers. 

Aromessence Mandarin Night Balm - £32.50
And another night balm.. this one is my favourite, it smells amazing, really fresh and the scent lingers which I love about it. This one smooths wrinkles and aims to create a luminous skin finish.

Hydra Floral Multi Protection BB Cream - £29
I like a medium-full coverage so a BB cream rarely comes into contact with my face but I've been using this in the shade Clair/Light to get more of a feel of it while I'm floating around the house on a Sunday or nipping to the shop quickly. It makes my face all glowy which I love and doesn't settle or gather on the skin. 

Aroma Purete 2 in 1 Purifying & Oxgenating Mask - £22
This mask is so lovely to use, it's lightweight, doesn't fix your face and you just leave it on for ten minutes, dampen then buff off. It always smells pretty awesome too!
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Tuesday, 3 June 2014

The Body Shop Haul



A few weeks ago there was a 40% off discount code floating around Twitter and on The Body Shop website so I obviously made a tiny order. I haven't used any of their products for years, I just use to pick up what was on offer in Boots or use my trusty Soap & Glory Righteous Butter; but after having a good look in the store a few weeks ago and falling for the scent of the raspberry collection I thought I'd give it another look. 
If you haven't already had a sniff of the Raspberry collection, get yourself to the store. It smells good enough to eat. I was spraying the body spray all over myself and left smelling like Raspberry Ripple Ice Cream. Omnom. It's quite a thick butter compared to the other one I bought but it soaks in quite quickly and doesn't leave a sticky residue which is what puts me off a lot of mosturisers. 
The second body butter I treated myself to was the Mango one. This one is a lot creamier and soaks in just as quick; again leaving no stickiness. My skin feels soft and so moisturised. I've already touched on the scent of these butters but I couldn't quite get over just how good them smell. The scent lingers for hours. I've even had comments at work when wearing the Mango one in particular about how good it smells. I do wonder why it took me so long to go back to The Body Shop but I'm going to be making up for lost time over the next few months.

I would love to know what your favourite products are from The Body Shop! What do you recommend I try next?  
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Monday, 2 June 2014

Birchbox Harper's Bazaar

£10.00 (+£2.95 postage) per month. Birchbox UK*


Birchbox* collaborated with Harper's Bazaar last month to bring you this gorgeous, Summer inspired box, with the help of some experts from Harper's Bazaar this box is full of essentials to see you in to the next season. There was also a mini mag enclosed with helpful tips and tricks from HP's Beauty Director Sophie Bloomfield and the experts at Birchbox HQ. I've never signed up for a monthly beauty box subscription so I didn't know what to expect. It is something I've been thinking about for a while so the email from Birchbox couldn't of come at a better time.

The box was smaller than I thought it would be but I think that's down to photos making it look bigger. I'm not complaining, I was just quite surprised at how much was fitted in. Inside is a small drawstring bag with six products, one being full sized. I received Benefit They're Real, Aromatherapy Bath & Shower Oil, Laura Mercier Flawless Skin Face Polish, Philip Kingsley One More Day Dry Shampoo, Imedeen Supplements and a full size Soigne nail polish in Cerise.

I've had Soigne Cerise on my nails for three days now, they've been through showers, a hair wash, washing up, cooking and scrubbing the hob. Guess what? No chips! Benefit They're Real doesn't need a review.. it's one of the best mascaras on the market today. Laura Mercier Flawless Skin Face Polish smells amazing, just like apricots and left my skin feeling so, so soft. I can feel a full size purchase coming on soon. Aromatherapy Bath & Shower Oil smells fresh and you can really pick up the rosemary scents in it. I've used this is one hit in a bath and it relaxed me more than revived me. I wish the sample was just a little bit bigger. Imedeen supplements are meant to improve skin quality and maintain skin radiance, I can't say they work as I haven't take them and I'm not sure yet whether I'm going to. Finally is Philip Kingsley One More Day Dry Shampoo, again the scent of this is lovely and quite fresh, but it left quite an obvious grey residue that was really difficult to get rid of that I had to go and wash my hair. Maybe I used too much, I haven't written it off just yet. 

I would totally recommend having a look at the Birchbox website where you can see all their previous boxes. I was really impressed and can feel a subscription coming on very soon.

*Contains PR Sample.
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Sunday, 1 June 2014

Naked Flushed Palette in Streak


Urban Decay are releasing three new palettes to their Naked Flushed range today! Eek! On Thursdays My sister, Emily and I, go shopping and talk each other into buying stuff we don't need. This week we went to the Urban Decay counter so Emily could get colour matched with Naked Skin and we had the best experience We/I've ever had on a beauty counter. The Sales Assistant was amazing, she knew her stuff, let me play with numerous palettes while she colour matched Emily and let me buy this gorgeous flushed palette before it's release date. 
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