Powered by Blogger.

Other // Why I Love Victoria's Secret Fragrances

If you were to name your favourite perfume brands, what would your answer be? Marc Jacobs? Dior? Chanel? Mine would be Victoria's Secret. When people ask me what perfume I am wearing they always look surprised when I say it is VS. "Do they do perfume? I thought it was just underwear?" they say. But nope, I have about 8 bottles of Victoria's Secret fragrances hoarded away in my bedroom and I just can't get enough of the stuff.

The first time I ever encountered a Victoria's Secret fragrance was in an airport in Istanbul about 8 years ago and I was so excited to buy something from Victoria's Secret. I knew of the brand but had never seen anything from them in the flesh before so I was like a kid in a sweet shop. I remember buying a fragrance mist which was bright blue and sickly sweet. I used to douse myself in it before going to secondary school and in hindsight, the fact that it used to nearly make me choke should have told me that I was using too much at once. When I used the whole bottle up I kept it for nearly a year as I couldn't bare to throw it away. I was quite sad really, ha ha.

I haven't really changed much since then, not really. Last year when I went to America I bought 8 Victoria's Secret Fragrance Mists. I told myself I would give them to friends as presents and I think I have only given away 2. That was last February and I am still on the same bottle I started back then as I am now, 14 months later. Whilst I don't use it everyday as I do alternate between the fragrance mists and other perfumes, I can't believe I am still using the same product 14 months down the road. They last an incredibly long time which is amazing, especially if you are like me and spray far too much than necessary at once.

Not only do I love the Victoria's Secret Fragrance Mists, I also love the perfumes. The Victoria's Secret Bombshell Perfume is definitely up there in my top three scents. It is fruity and floral without being overpowering and too sickly sweet. I always find describing fragrances really difficult and I'll always say that it is better to actually smell something before going off on a whim and purchasing something on the off-chance but it is a really wonderful, light, fruity scent which is perfect for everyday.

It can be rather overwhelming walking into a Victoria's Secret store as there is just so much to look at but I really think the perfume and fragrance section is definitely not one to walk past. I can't say there is a perfume I have smelt of theirs that I don't like. Xo, Victoria Perfume is next on my list to purchase, as is the Bombshell in Bloom Perfume although I do think that scent may be discontinued now which means I will probably have to buy it from some dodgy seller on eBay and hope for the best.

With the Victoria's Secret Fragrance Mists and the Perfumes available in a whole variety of different scents aimed at women of all ages, I definitely think they aren't to be walked past. Next time you find yourself in a Victoria's Secret store, I highly recommend you try out the Bombshell Perfume because it is pretty damn glorious.


Review // Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita

When I went to America I searched high and low for the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks. They were top of my shopping list and I wanted one in nearly every colour. Only, they are actually really hard to track down. The most popular shades especially. Of course, if I wanted to get the shade Witches which is describe as being a 'cool black with a matte finish' then I could have quite easily picked up dozens in every Sephora store I went to but Lolita, Noble and Bow n Arrow were very hard to find. 

I must have visited 5 different Sephora stores before I managed to buy the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita, one of the most popular shades in the range. I squealed with delight as I picked up the last one on the shelf and bounded to the till to pay for it before someone could wrestle me to the ground for it. But was it worth all of the hassle?

About the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks:
"A long-wear, full-coverage liquid lipstick with a smooth, matte finish. Now in 28 bold shades, Everlasting Liquid Lipstick gives lips long-lasting wear and high-pigment color. Its creamy, color-rich formula glides over lips like a gloss but dries to a true matte finish. It's infused with natural comfort-enhancing ingredients, including Vitamin E and sunflower seed so you can flaunt lasting matte color that leaves lips feeling comfortable."

The Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks come housed in a 6.7ml thin tube which comes with a long doe-foot inside the twist-up lid. I really like the packaging of the lipsticks although I do find the doe-foot applicator quite tricky to use. I have recently tried out the Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kits so I am finding it really hard not to compare the two but what I will say is that I don't find the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks as easy to use as the Kylie Lip Kits. I haven't written a full review on the latter yet but I am finding it really hard not to prefer one over the other. 

Lolita is described as being a chestnut rose and whilst I would agree, I would say that it looks very differently on me than on other people. On some it can look like the perfect dark nude whereas on me it can look quite red based and very dark on the lips. I have seen someone describe it as being very 90's and I can only agree. It is definitely a wearable, everyday shade but I am slightly uncertain if I like it on me and my skintone. 

The formula is fairly thin and I don't find it to be as creamy or velvety in texture like others have found. Whilst Lolita is really pigmented, I find the formula too inconsistent to get away with just one swipe on the lips and have to use two, although they are really buildable in colour. Lolita doesn't dry immediately so you do have some time to play with if you need to apply another layer or wipe away any excess. I found it fairly tricky to apply Lolita without a lip liner as I just seemed to get it everywhere so you have to apply it really carefully if you want to make sure you get it on your lips and not all over your face. 

The Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks have no noticeable smell to them which pleases me very much as there is nothing I hate more than synthetic sweet scents! In terms of longevity I found that after a couple of hours of eating and drinking then Lolita did wear away rather significantly and I needed to reapply it again which whilst it is no big deal, I did expect them to last slightly longer than they do. I also found them to be rather drying and uncomfortable on the lips although they didn't show up any dry areas on the lips which is surprising. 

Overall, I am not too sure what to think of the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks. I wouldn't say Lolita is a shade which particularly suited me although it is a really everyday, wearable shade for others. I have no complaints when it comes to the packaging and I love how the lipsticks themselves don't have a smell to them. I find the applicator really hard to use and I am yet to apply this product without getting it everywhere so I think using a lip liner would be beneficial. I found I needed two layers of Lolita to ensure it wasn't patchy although it doesn't dry straight away so you do have time to clean up any mistakes. When dried it is noticeable that you have a product on the lips and it is uncomfortable and as drying as any other matte lip product. I think I would probably try a few different shades in the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks range but I'm not currently in love with them, although I do think this is down to the Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kits which I will be reviewing soon!


Other // April Beauty Favourites

I don't usually do monthly favourites posts, purely because I am very much same old same old and use the same products day in, day out so it would be slightly pointless to bang on about the same products each month. I have recently incorporated a few new products into my daily routine and I have really been loving these select few products at the moment so I thought I would share them with you lovely people. Here are my April beauty faves!

The first item I have been loving this month is the L'oreal Infallible 24hr Foundation in Porcelain. I bought this product and the matte version at the same time and I go through phases of preferring one over the other. At the moment I am loving the original version but give it a few days and I will be back on the matte hype again. This foundation offers medium to full coverage and offers foundation shades for pale folk like me so it is a definite staple in my daily routine! Another product I have been using a lot this month is the Laura Mercier Foundation Primer. The skin on my face is still slightly dry so this primer really softens and preps the skin and even works wonders on the dry patches. It is slightly pricey for a primer at £29 but it does work wonders for the skin.

Onto eyes now, I have really loved the Ardell Natural Style Starter Kit 101 Demi Lashes which is the perfect starter kit if you are just starting out with false eyelashes. They are really easy to apply and look as natural as false eyelashes can appear. This is my second pack of the 101 lashes and I would definitely recommend them if you were after an everyday set of false eyelashes. Staying on the lines of eyelashes, I have been obsessed with the Tweezerman Rose Gold Eyelash Curlers. They are the first eyelash curlers I have tried and I really cannot imagine life without them, or remember how I lived life before I had them!

The next product I absolutely love this month is the Natural Collection Solo Eyeshadow in Willow. It is the most beautiful shimmery pink shade which is intended as an eyeshadow but I think it makes for a wonderful highlight. I have used it nearly every day this month and it so so beautiful. I can't believe it is only £1.99! My favourite lip product this month has been the Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kit in Candy K. I know they are expensive, especially with the postage and customs charges, but oh my goodness, they are amazing. Candy K lasts all day long on the lips and does not budge or fade, no matter how long you wear it for. Yes it smells pretty funky in the tube, think synthetic strawberries and cream and times it by 10, but even then, the Lip Kit is good enough to ignore all of that. I would go as far to say it was my product of the month, if not year!

Finally, I have been wearing the Victoria's Secret Bombshell Perfume a lot this month. It smells light and floral without being overpowering or sickly sweet and every time I wear it, people always ask me what perfume I am wearing. Victoria's Secret scents albeit fragrance mists or perfumes are now really accessible in the UK so there is no excuse not to try one out in one variation or another!

What are your beauty favourites this month?


Review // KIKO Cream Crush Eyeshadow in 04 Mat Taupe

Back in January I managed to come across a KIKO store where I purchased a few items to try out. I bought a moisturiser, an eyeliner pencil and a cream eyeshadow. Since then the moisturiser and the eyeliner have been a staple in my make-up bag but the cream eyeshadow? Not so much. The first shade in the KIKO Cream Crush Eyeshadow range I tried was Pearly Vintage Rose, a beautiful shimmery champagne colour which is really wearable and perfect for every day. It reminds me a hell of a lot of the MAC Paint Pot in Vintage Selection but more golden in colour. 

It's not the product itself that I have had problems with, it is the packaging. I will get onto that a bit further down but let me tell you more about the eyeshadow itself first.

About the KIKO Milano Cream Crush Eyeshadow:
"Highly blendable, long-lasting cream eyeshadow. The silky and soft texture goes on easily for bold eye make-up that stays on for up to 10 hours. The formula applies perfectly to the eyelids and feels weightless. The bright shades with velvety finishes add a touch of style to every look. Cream Crush Lasting Colour Eyeshadow is enclosed in an elegant glass pot which allows you to clearly see the colour. Available in 16 colour shades with matte or pearl finishes."

The second shade in the KIKO Cream Crush Eyeshadow range I have tried is called Mat Taupe which is just as described. It is a taupe shade which is very much grey based. It has a matte finish and I would say it were a very wearable, everyday taupe to be worn on its own or as base for other eyeshadows. Just like Pearly Vintage Rose, this too reminds me of a MAC Paint Pot, this time in Stormy Pink, although the latter is more lilac based whereas this is more grey. I would definitely consider the KIKO Cream Crush Eyeshadows to be a dupe for the MAC Paint Pots in longevity and usage but they have completely different textures. The MAC Paint Pots are very flat and solid in texture whereas the KIKO Cream Crush Eyeshadows are more lightweight and mousse like.

I wear Mat Taupe on it's own and it is a beautiful stand alone shade. It is easy to apply with the fingers and due to it's creamy texture it blends with ease and stays put all day long. The colour is highly pigmented and I only needed one swipe of colour for the above swatch which goes to show how intense it is. I am yet to find the KIKO Cream Crush Eyeshadows to budge, creased or transfer and for that I really cannot fault them due to their longevity, formula or pigmentation. The one big downfall to this product is the packaging.

The KIKO Cream Crush Eyeshadows come housed in a little 4g pot with a twist up lid. The product itself only reaches about half way up (or down, whichever way you look at it) the pot, meaning it is really hard to get the product out as it is so shallow in the jar. I have long nails which makes it even more difficult, especially when you try really hard not to to get it under your nails. Because it is so hard to get the product out of the jar it makes it a massive faff and a real task to apply. This turns the product from a quick and easy solution as a swipe of colour on the eyelids to a real chore. The way they package the product really turns me off them which is a real shame as the eyeshadow itself is wonderful but if you can't get it out of the packaging then what's the point?


Review // Urban Tan Glamour Grit Salt Scrub

Spring is here! Hooray! This means Summer is just around the corner which makes me believe there is light at the end of the tunnel although it is hard to believe as I sit here shivering into a blanket at the end of April. I would say that when Summer comes it brings blazing heat and sunshine but as I live in the UK I do believe that is mild optimism. Anyway, whether in the UK or on some exotic island in the Caribbean, it is guaranteed that I will burn this summer because, as I say, it isn't Summer until you get sunburnt, right? (I don't actually say that, FYI.)

With every sore cycle of sunburn comes the horrible skin-peeling process. I have dry skin throughout the year regardless of sunburn or not so exfoliators are a real necessity when it comes to shifting dead skin cells to ensure skin is looking, and feeling, healthy. I will be honest and say I look after my skin more during the summer, purely because more flesh is on show than in Winter. Come June I will be moisturising, body-buttering, exfoliating, gradual tanning.. I have never faked tanned before but this summer I will definitely be giving it a go, especially as the furthest I will be travelling to is probably Barry Island in Wales. 

Urban Tan have released a product which is focused on prepping the skin before fake tanning which exfoliates and buffs away any dead and dry skin cells. Not only does it work an utter dream but it is also full of vitamins and anti-oxidants whilst being cruelty-free and suitable for vegans. Say hello to the product you will be needing this summer - the Urban Tan Glamour Grit Salt Scrub*.

About the Urban Tan Glamour Grit Salt Scrub:
"Glamour Grit is an oil-free salt scrub that will buff up your rough side and gently exfoliate to reveal smoother skin. The White Barbados Grapefruit scent will invigorate your senses. It contains the wonderful ingredients Sea Kelp and Algae to condition your skin, as well as anti-oxidant vitamin E to fight free radical damage for skin rejuvenation."

For £14.99 you get a massive 320g pot of product which comes in a twist-up tub. Inside is a foil lid which is welcoming as you know the product has been kept fresh whilst it has been sat in the pot. Also in the pot is a little wooden spatula to help scoop the product up with which I find very useful. As soon as you peel back that foil you are hit by the most wonderful, fresh and fruity scent of grapefruit. It smells so, so lovely. It literally smells like summer in a pot, it is heavenly! 

The texture of the Urban Tan Glamour Grit Salt Scrub is one that completely stands out and beats every other scrub I have tried. I have always said that I am yet to find an exfoliant which is as harsh as I would like. If I want to exfoliate then I don't want to use a product with little particles which hardly touch the surface - I want harsh scrubby bits which attack the dead skin cells instantly. Luckily, I have found my saviour! You have to mix the product up a bit with the little spatula to get it started and once you do so you will find that the orange layer on top will dissolve, revealing the white salt scrub underneath. The texture is that of the grit you would lay on the floor during winter to ensure you don't fall and break your neck. It is thick, it is harsh and it is wonderful. 

I apply a very small amount to my hands using the spatula included then I rub my hands together slightly, just to break the product down a little. I had some dry patches on my legs recently and within one use of the Urban Tan Glamour Grit Salt Scrub I noticed a massive difference. You get immediate results. The salt scrub immediately buffs away dead and dry skin cells with utter ease and I really cannot fault it. A little goes a long way and I can see myself using this pot all year round. 

If you are looking for a salt scrub to buff away dead and dry skin cells pretty much instantly then look no further. It smells absolutely divine and it does the job it claims to and it does it very, very well. The texture is very gritty which gives a rather harsh exfoliating experience but I quite like that. I am fed up with exfoliators not doing their job properly or trying to fob me off with dreaded microbeads. The Urban Tan Glamour Grit Salt Scrub is harsh but not uncomfortable and it leaves the skin smelling of grapefruit which is more than welcome in my eyes. I hate to gush about a product but I really, really like this and it is just the product I have been after!

(PR Sample but thoughts entirely my own - I really do love it as much as I claim!!)


Review // Miss Sporty Insta Glow Foundation in Ivory

What does the average bottle of foundation cost? £10? £20? £25? Foundation is a beautiful thing. It can hide a multitude of sins and is the perfect canvas for the application of other make-up. Whilst I don't believe you have to spend a lot of money to get high quality make-up, what would you think if I said I had recently been wearing a foundation which costs £3.49?

On a recent Boots shopping spree I purchased the Miss Sporty Insta Glow Primer which I recently posted about on here. I mentioned how it was a really lightweight primer which leaves the face with a very subtle glow. The primer really perks the skin up and not only is it a great budget primer, but it also makes for a wonderful highlight on the cheekbones due to its pink pearlescent colour. Whilst I was purchasing the primer I thought I would pick up the foundation too, which is the Miss Sporty Insta Glow Foundation.

About the Miss Sporty Insta Glow Foundation:
"Insta glow foundation for the perfect complexion which leaves a natural finish and a natural glow effect."

Available in 4 shades, this is a foundation which does not cater for everyone. I purchased the lightest shade in the range which is Ivory however the names for the other three shades will go to show how limited they are in shades; Light, Medium and Dark. I am the palest of the pale. If we were to try and work out a name for the colour of my skin by using a Dulux colour chart, we would be looking at Absolute White, White Cotton or White Handkerchief. I usually find it really difficult to find a foundation which is suited to the colour of my skin as most of the shades are far too orange for me but surprisingly, Ivory is really pale so it is perfect for me. I actually compared this foundation to my current go-to foundation which is the L'oreal Infallible 24HR Foundation and this is much paler than that shade which is surprising. I really want to do a blog post all about the differences in foundation shades from different brands as Ivory from Rimmel is in no way similar to Ivory from Maybelline.

The Miss Sporty Insta Glow Foundation comes packaged in a squeezy tube which makes dispersing the product simple enough. The packaging is bright, fun and pretty inoffensive. It is obviously a cheaper product so the packaging doesn't scream high-end but it's sweet and stands out in my make-up bag.

I really like the consistency to this foundation. It's not thin or really thick, it is middle of the road but it is really creamy in texture and applies like a dream. Running throughout the foundation is little light reflecting particles which give the face a really beautiful subtle glow. I only noticed it on my third time of trying this foundation out and that was only because I was staring my myself in a magnifying mirror (ie, terrifying) so it really is just a very subtle glow to perk up the skin.

I only needed a couple of pea sized amounts of the foundation to cover my entire face, although I do find that I have to go over my rosacea with a couple of layers just to get more coverage. It is a very lightweight and buildable foundation which is an absolutely bargain for £3.49. I haven't been able to wear it recently due to having a really bad flare up of dry skin on my face and I find that this Miss Sporty Insta Glow Foundation clings to the dry patches like no-ones business so I have been choosing different foundations just while my skin clears up but as soon as it does, I will definitely be coming back to this.

Overall, a really nice budget foundation which gives the skin a very subtle glow. I only need a couple of squeezes of foundation to cover my face, although problem areas do require a couple of layers just to get more coverage. I have found that this foundation lasts just as long as any of my other higher priced foundations and for that, I can't fault it. I do believe the only thing that lets this product down is the shade range as it definitely will not cater for everyone, although it does surprisingly cater for the pale folk, like me. 


Review // Sephora Lotus Sleeping Mask

I know I keep going on about it but my skin is really horribly dry at the moment. I usually have oily skin but for some reason it is like all of the moisture and oils from my face have been sucked out and I am left with dry and dehydrated looking skin. I have tried so many moisturisers, masks, creams.. none of which have made a drastic improvement.

 Back in February I went to America which obviously included a trip, or five, to Sephora where I was sucked in to the skincare stands like a moth to a flame. I really wanted to try out a sheet mask as I haven't tried them before but I guess they are so popular at the moment that they sell out really quickly as whenever I went to buy a few, they were all out of stock! Instead, I decided to try a sleeping mask. With 11 different varieties to chose from, with each mask promising something different in terms of results, I decided to go for the Sephora Lotus Sleeping Mask.

About the Sephora Sleeping Masks:
"A line of rich cream-gel textured sleeping masks, each with a skin refreshing benefit. Each of these masks is infused with a different active ingredient for relaxing the skin and achieving a brighter, more revitalized complexion. The luxurious cream-gel texture melts into skin for penetration of the active ingredients while you sleep."

I really wanted to buy the Honey Sleeping Mask as it promises to nourish and relieve dry skin instantly for softened, balanced skin but it was all sold out so I bought the Lotus Sleeping Mask which promises to lock in water and reduces signs of fatigue for the appearance of plumper, more rested skin whilst claiming to moisturise. I actually really like the sound of each sleeping mask within the range and would love to try the Pearl Sleeping Mask out in the future as it claims to evens and help minimizes irregularities for a skintone which is even, fresher and brighter. 

Each Sephora Sleeping Mask comes packaged in a little 8ml pot which has a peel-back lid, making it single use. This is a real problem for me as there is so much product within the little pot that you can really easily get a few uses out of it but due to the packaging, it isn't something very easy to do so as it isn't packaged in a reuseable way. I ended up tranferring the rest of the product into a little pot myself to store it in as it seemed wasteful to throw it all away.

The mask itself is gel-like in texture which is pink in colour. It smells very light, florally and pleasant, although I can't say I noticed the smell too much when I applied the product to the skin. I washed and cleansed my face then patted it dry before applying about 1/3 of the product all over my face just before bedtime. When applied to the skin, the mask completely dissolves in colour so it applies clear. At first it makes your skin look super shiny/greasy but it soaks into the skin fairly quickly. The directions say to wipe off any excess the following morning but when I woke up the next day it had completely soaked into the skin and was not detectable in the slightest. 

Results wise, my skin was certainly left looking fresher and perkier than before whilst softening it slightly but I did find my skin was still quite dry. Perhaps if I had applied the whole pot of product rather than just 1/3 of it I might have received different results, which is why I then applied it again the following evening and repeated the process. The next morning my skin was again softer and brighter but they aren't a permanent fix. In order to get real results you would need to apply them regularly and as each pot is considered as single-use, you would need to buy quite a few. I think if they were to come in a big pot/jar which offered you more product which were reusable then they would be more worth your time.

As fun and novel as these Sephora Sleeping Masks are, they are in no way a permanent solution to your skincare woes. It is nice to apply them before bedtime and wake up with softer skin but in order for them to be more worth your time then they should ideally be in a bigger, reusable pot. For travelling these sleeping masks are ideal but for everyday life? Probably not.


First Impressions // Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kit in Kourt K + All About Customs Charges

Another Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kit first impressions! I recently had Dolce K and Candy K arrive in the post so I did a post all about my Dolce K and Candy K first impressions and shortly after they arrived, Kourt K arrived. I bought Dolce K and Candy K on one day then a couple of days later they released Kourt K so I had to pay for shipping twice, which sucked considering how expensive it is but I will get onto that in a minute.. Of course, I could have waited about a week and bought all 3 shades in one go but the Kylie Lip Kits are notoriously hard to get hold of so I caved and made two separate orders. But were they worth it?

Firstly, it was relatively easy managing to get hold of Kourt K compared to when I tried to buy Dolce K and Candy K last time. Before, I sat at my computer and refreshed the page about 180 times until they went on sale where the majority of the shades I wanted to purchase had sold out by the time I had managed to put them in my basket. This time I simply went onto the website, added it to my basket and that was that. This may be down to the fact that only the one shade was on sale rather than the whole range which draws more attraction. 

With my first order I did not get charged customs charges but this time, I unfortunately did. There was a bit of confusion regarding my parcel actually as I checked the tracking number you get with each order and it said that my order had been delivered to me at 6:33 am that morning which didn't happen as who the hell delivers at 6:33 in the morning??! It then made me wonder which one of my thieving neighbours had stolen it. I tried contacting Kylie Cosmetics and USPS, the postal company in charge of the tracking information but to no avail. Fortunately, or unfortunately, whichever way you look at it, I received a note through my door 2 days later from Royal Mail saying I needed to pay £12.05 for customs charges on it. (It is well worth knowing that I was charged £4.05 in customs charges. The other £8 I had to pay was to Royal Mail for a handling fee!! Ridiculous.) With my last order, Kylie Cosmetics had claimed that the cost of the items within the box were that of $2, hence why I didn't get charged customs fees but this time they told the truth so I had no choice but to cough up even more money for it, even though I had already paid $14.95 which is £10.47, for postage. So in theory, I have spent £22.52 for the postage of one lipstick. It is really worth bearing that in mind when you make an order. For someone who resents spending £3.99 on postage from Missguided, this physically hurts me.

I will also add that unlike my first order, I did not receive a pretty little card with the note from Kylie within my order. I really like the photo on the front of the card so I was sad not to receive one. Especially when I had spent so much but hey, it is just a mass-produced card.

The packaging to Kourt K is the same as all of the other Kylie Lip Kits with the dripping on the outer box as well as on the packaging of each lip kit. Each kit is coloured to indicate each shade inside which is handy when you have more than one and need to differentiate between them. Inside each kit is an easy-to-use, creamy lip liner and the piece de resistance, the liquid lipstick with its doe-foot applicator and non-drying matte formula.

Kourt K is a deep, dark purple which is of course in a matte finish. Whilst I wouldn't say it were an everyday shade, I really love the deep, vampy colour. I can imagine me wearing it a lot in Autumn but I wouldn't say it were necessarily a spring/summer shade. Like the other Kylie Lip Kits I have tried, Kourt K is very pigmented and deep in colour which dries to a matte finish.

I will post a whole review on Kourt K soon when I have had time to try it out but what I will say is that I have recently been trying out Candy K and I absolutely love it. It is far better than I expected and I can really see what all the fuss is about. I know they have hype around them purely because of the celebrity attached to them but they are a product with real substance which delivers in quality and longevity. I would go as far to say that they are the most comfortable matte lipsticks I have worn but I will write an in-depth review of all three shades; Dolce K, Candy K and Kourt K soon!

Customs charges // I believe it is a luck of the draw. There is no way to get round them I'm afraid. I believe they are bloody well annoying considering you have already spent so much money on postage to begin with to then be charged more on top with your order being held to ransom until you do so. I was charged £12.05 for customs charges, although I have seen people be charged more than I, however I think this price is down to how many Lip Kits you have ordered. You will find when you reluctantly pick it up from the post office that there is a breakdown of the charges on the front of the box - £4.05 of that is for the actual item and £8 is to Royal Mail as a handling fee. 

(excluding tax, postage and/or customs charges)


Review // MAC Eyeshadow in Satin Taupe

Does anyone have a realistic dream to aspire towards? I'm talking about dreams that are easy to reach - like owning every MAC Eyeshadow shade. That is my realistic dream. I know I can aim for it, it just might take me a while to accomplish it.

I have spoken about my love for MAC Eyeshadows before and have even dedicated a whole post to my small collection, which is ever so slowly increasing. My most recent addition is Satin Taupe, a neutral taupe shade which has a silver shimmer running throughout. It is a really wearable, neutral shade - one which is perfect for everyday work life.

At the moment you will either find me wearing just heavy eyeliner on my eyelids or this beautiful neutral eyeshadow. Like previous MAC Eyeshadows I have tried, it is pigmented, easy to build up in colour whilst being soft to the touch. It does fall-out slightly when I apply but I often find my other MAC Eyeshadows do that too. Like always, I apply Satin Taupe on top of my beloved Painterly Paint Pot and I find that this makes the eyeshadow last all day long without creasing, fading or wearing.

Once again, I have found another MAC Eyeshadow that I adore. I really find it hard to fault them, actually. I know £13 for one eyeshadow does seem quite expensive but they honestly last you so long, you definitely won't regret it. If you haven't tried a MAC Eyeshadow yet then I really cannot recommend them enough!


Review // NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Stockholm

Before recently I had never really tried or been bothered about matte liquid lipsticks. The first few that I tried were from the Bourjois Rogue Velvet Lipsticks range and whilst I really enjoyed using them, it has only been recently that I feel they have really taken off. We now have the Kylie Lip Kits, the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks and the Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipsticks but other than the Bourjois range, we haven't really got a budget version, until now.

When I was in America (yes, I am still going on about it), I managed to buy a few of the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams, not realising how readily available they are here in the UK now. I recently wrote a post all about buying make up in America and if it is actually cheaper buying it there or in the UK and it is actually cheaper to buy these NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams here than in America so bare that in mind if you were thinking of making a big purchase in the US! 

About the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams:
"Neither lipstick nor lip gloss, NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream is a new kind of lip colour that goes on silky smooth and sets to a matte finish. NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream is surprisingly durable and unlike some matte lipstick formulas also moisturising."

Each of the 18 shades in the Matte Lip Cream range are named after various cities around the world so it is no surprise that the first shade in the range I picked up is called Stockholm. Stockholm is a dark nude shade with a matte finish. Each NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream comes housed in a little 8ml tube with the colour of the outer-packaging indicating the shade inside. The applicator is that of a doe-foot which I am coming more accustomed to the more I use liquid lipsticks. I would say it does take some getting use to when it comes to applying as it can get a bit messy when you are in a rush; I find that I have to make sure I double check it isn't all over my mouth before I leave the house as I find the doe-foot applicator quite hard to get into the inner corners of the lips.

The colour pay off is wonderful. Stockholm is rich in colour pigmentation and the cream formula makes it really creamy on the lips. Like most matte lipsticks, it does highlight any dry patches so applying a lip balm and exfoliating beforehand is beneficial. I wouldn't say it were the most comfortable lip cream to wear. Whilst I don't find it horrifically drying, it is noticeable on the lips but not so bad that is it uncomfortable. Let's put it this way, it is definitely no Barry M 147! One thing to mention is that they do smell rather synthetically sweet. Think Kylie Lip Kits or the Collection Cream Puff Lip Creams - very sweet and rather off-putting but fortunately the smell doesn't linger too long.

For £5.50, I think these NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams are a real bargain. They are in available is so many bright and wearable shades, I really think they are well worth a try. I will definitely be wearing Stockholm throughout the summer and I definitely want to buy a few more shades.


Other // Is It Cheaper To Buy Make Up In America?

When I went to America I went armed with a long list of make up products that I was going to try and buy when I was out there. Not only was I aiming at buying make up that we can't get in the UK, but also make up that we can get here but because of the pound to dollar conversion, it should be cheaper, right?

Before I went to America I decided to look up the prices of the items that I wanted to buy whilst on holiday on UK websites as well as on US websites and the results were pretty surprising. Some of the items that you can only find limited stock of online in the UK, such as Anastasia Beverly Hills, turned out to be cheaper here than in the US where they originate from. I ended up looking up a bunch of popular beauty products on US and UK websites to see which were cheaper in which country and I think you will all be pretty surprised at what I found. But first, let's talk tax..

Tax // This is the first thing to remember when making any purchase in the USA. The price you see on the tag is not the final price. When you get to the till they add the tax on which is not only a pain when you think you have the right money, but it also obviously makes the product more expensive, meaning that deal you think you are getting isn't such a great deal after all. For example, I had planned to buy a new iPhone in America but if I added the tax into consideration then it would be more expensive than if I were to buy it at home. So if you want to buy an iPhone in America, just buy it in duty free instead!

UK vs US // The results! (£1 > $1.41. All US prices are including tax)
Nars Velvet Matte Skin Tint / UK - £30 | US - $46.64 > £33.02 | Cheaper in the UK
Anastasia Beverly Hills Glow Kit / UK - £39 | US - $48.71 > £34.48 | Cheaper in the US
Becca x Jaclyn Hill Shimmering Skin Perfector / UK - £32 | US - $46.59 > £32.98 | About even
Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz / UK - £15.50 | US - $28.57 > £20.23 | Cheaper in the UK
Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Palette / UK - £59 | US - $65.72 > £46.53 | Cheaper in the US
Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow / UK - £15 | US - $25.39 > £17.98 | Cheaper in the UK
Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette / UK - £38.50 | US - $57.24 > £40.52 | Cheaper in the UK
Urban Decay Naked Concealer / UK - £17.50 | US - $30.04 >  £21.27 | Cheaper in the UK
Tarte Tartelette In Bloom Palette / UK - £33 | US - $54.01 > £38.24 | Cheaper in the UK
Real Techniques Core Collection / UK - £21.99 | US - $18.64 > £13.20 | Cheaper in the US

It is also worth noting that the tax varies in each state and that the conversion rates change each day so it is also best to check just before you make a purchase to see if you are actually getting a better deal or not. I know spending a few extra dollars here and there doesn't sound too bad but they all add up in the end!

Something that also surprised me when walking around a drugstore was that they now sell UK brands such as MUA and Makeup Revolution in America and goodness me, are they expensive. We are talking double/triple the price than the UK. Obviously us British people won't be travelling to America and buying MUA but if you are American and planning a trip to the UK, buy it here as it is a hell of a lot cheaper!

So, is it cheaper to buy make up in America?
I think the above is a rhetorical question. It is really hard to tell but from what I have found above, then it pays to do your research. If you are heading to the US and have a lengthy shopping list, have a google as you might just be surprised at the cost of things and lets not forget about that pesky tax...


First Impressions // Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kits in Dolce K & Candy K

Whilst I would say I was a moderate fan of the Kardashians, I wouldn't buy everything they endorsed, promoted or put their name to. When I first heard that Kylie Jenner was bringing out her own cosmetics line I wasn't too fussed. I thought it would be some brand bringing out new products with Kylie just putting her name to it but I couldn't be more wrong.

If you follow Kylie on Snapchat then you will see she is often at the Kylie Lip Kit factory over-seeing production, tweaking the products slightly (for instance, she recently changed the applicator as it wasn't fluffy enough for application) and coming up with new shades. Whilst I don't believe she is single handedly doing all of this herself, it does seem that she has a real interest in it which is nice to see. 

It is only up until recently that I have wanted to try out a few shades of the Kylie Lip Kits and fortunately, I have managed to purchase a couple of shades during a recent re-stocking. I know it is hard to get hold of them as they sell out so quickly and sadly I think it is just down to luck in managing to purchase them. I put Dolce K, Candy K, Posie K and Koko K in my basket after constantly refreshing the website waiting for them to go live and within about a minute and a half Koko K and Posie K had sold out completely, just by the time I had managed to add them to my basket. I have since then managed to buy Kourt K on its release date so I am very (im)patiently waiting for that to turn up too. If you are interested in them then they get restocked every Monday at about 11pm UK time so keep refreshing that website!

I have heard that some people have been charged at customs for their Kylie Lip Kits but luckily that hasn't happened to me yet - although that may be down to the mis-information on the labelling on the front of the box. I won't lie to you and I will say that the shipping of the Lip Kits is expensive. If I buy something from Missguided, for example, I am very reluctant to spend £3.99 on postage so imagine my reluctance when I have to pay £10.47 ($14.95) to get my order sent to the UK. And I paid it twice. Spending £20 on postage really hurts me so I would definitely be miffed if I then had to pay customs charges on top of that. All said though, my order did come within about a week and it was packaged really well so I guess if I have to pay £4 to get a package shipped from a city a couple of hours away then I should be happy to pay £10 to get a package shipped from the other side of the world.

I don't want to go into too much detail about the products themselves, purely because they will be reviewed each individually but I am so utterly over the moon with the Kylie Lip Kits. After I first purchased them I did have second thoughts regarding the price of them but now I couldn't be less bothered about the price. When the kind post man knocked on my door to hand me this parcel, I actually squealed with delight. I have never been so excited to receive a parcel before!

I am sure you have all seen the packaging by now - the dripping lips, the twist up tubes with a doe-foot applicator, the dreamy matte formula.. I don't usually wear lip liners so they weren't my first attraction but they appear really creamy in formula without being drying. I do wonder how easy they will be to sharpen though.. Also, the lids of the lip liners snap shut with a click which I really like as you know it won't go everywhere and get ruined in your make-up bag.

The liquid lipsticks are an utter dream. You can visibly see in the tube that the product is filled all the way to the top so you definitely aren't being short changed in that aspect. They do have a funny smell to them - when they first came out I watched a few Youtube videos about them and people said they smelt very sickly sweet, something which I can't stand. Whilst the scent has been changed since then, they still have a noticeable smell to them although I wouldn't say it were too unpleasant. Both shades are incredibly pigmented and most definitely matte. Dolce K is described as being a medium beige nude and Candy K is described as being a soft, warm nude. From first impressions I would say I prefer the look of Candy K as Dolce K looks pretty dark on my skintone but time will tell when I put them into practice.

From first impressions I am really excited about the Kylie Lip Kits. They are incredibly pigmented, creamy and matte and the lip liners appear to be just the same as the main product. Whilst they are hard to get hold of and shipping is pricey, I don't regret buying them and I can't wait for Kourt K to arrive! If you are interested in buying one then get onto the website about 11pm UK time every Monday as that is usually when they are re-stocked but make sure you have your card to hand as they sell out within minutes. For two Lip Kits and shipping, I paid $72.95 which is £51.12 so bear that in mind if you were planning on making a purchase. Keep checking back as I will be reviewing both really soon! 

(excluding tax)


Review // Laura Mercier Eye Basics in Wheat

Quite a while ago now I bought a couple of items off of a fellow bloggers blog sale and managed to purchase a few items that I had been wanting to try out for a while. I love Laura Mercier products, especially the Laura Mercier Foundation Primer so when I saw an Eye Basics up for grabs, I decided to give it a try too.

About Laura Mercier Eye Basics:
"Laura Mercier Eye Basics creates the perfect canvas for eyes by camouflaging eye imperfections and enhancing the durability of eye makeup. This sheer, creamy texture blends easily and smoothly leaving a long-lasting semi-matte finish. Crease-proof and water-resistant, eyes are primed with this highly versatile product."

The Laura Mercier Eye Basics in Wheat which I have is in a mini, travel size bottle, although the original, full-sized product comes in a 5.1g twist-up tube. The lid makes a satisfying clicking sound when fully closed which is always welcome in my eyes as there has been many a time I have opened my make-up bag to find loose lids and make-up thrown about everywhere. Inside the lid is the doe-foot applicator which I found slightly daunting considering it is an eye product and not one for the lip.

Wheat is a light medium beige which I would say was incredibly similar to my beloved MAC Paint Pot in Painterly. It has a matte finish, just like Painterly.. It is to be used in the same way as a Paint Pot, in that it is an eye base/primer which promises to be crease-proof, as well as long-lasting. I would go as far to say that the Laura Mercier Eye Basics are the MAC Paint Pots but in a more liquid form.

I find this a really difficult product to review, purely because I bought this from a blog sale and it is essentially second-hand. I can't remember if it was claimed as being used or not but when I first opened it, it was very dry. Very dry. So dry that I found it uncomfortable to apply to the eyelids as the applicator was dry and scratchy. After shaking the bottle and wiggling the applicator around I finally managed to get the product out and onto my eyelids. Even with product on the applicator, I found it very dry. The formula is creamy and fairly thick in consistency but it dries very quickly, making application difficult.

I don't like the doe-foot applicator for application at all. Because the product is matte and dried incredibly quickly, it dries really quickly on the applicator which dries everything out further. I tried to dab Wheat out onto my eyelid before blending it in with my fingers but it dried so quickly that it was difficult to do so. I am really sad that this product didn't work for me as I really do like the shade as it is intense in colour and you wouldn't need to apply much to get a full flush of colour across the eyelids, nor would you need to build the colour up either. When I finally managed to get the product onto my eyes, I did like the colour but it does not beat my beloved MAC Paint Pot in Painterly. I think I would probably enjoy this product more if it were in a pot rather than a tube so if they ever bought it out in that style of packaging then I would give it another go but for now, I will stick to my MAC Paint Pots.


Review // Miss Sporty Insta Glow Primer

Quite a while ago now I went into Boots to buy some vitamin tablets and ended up leaving with a nice big bag full of make-up instead. I bought quite a lot but the first thing I want to show you is the Miss Sporty Insta Glow Primer. Now, I am in no way a make-up snob. I don't believe you have to spend a lot of money to get good make-up which is rich in colour as well as having excellent longevity but that said, I never buy anything from Miss Sporty. In fact, I probably haven't bought anything from Miss Sporty since I was about 13. 

I thought I would have a look at the Miss Sporty stand for a change, rather than walk straight past it like usual. I ended up buying the Miss Sporty Insta Glow Primer, as well as the foundation. I didn't know anything about it or what either product was like as I hadn't read or heard anything about either product before but as each product is so cheap, I didn't mind finding out.

About the Miss Sporty Insta Glow Primer:
"Perfection is not enough? Need to light up your skin and boost your glow? Add Insta Glow Primer into your routine for the perfect complexion which preps and primes the skin whilst boosting glow."

The product comes in a little squeezy tube and whilst I don't often talk about the packaging of things (I believe if you can see it then there is no need for me to comment on it) but I quite like the look of this product. Obviously it doesn't ooze luxury and high end but it looks nice and that is good enough for me!

The primer is pearlescent pink in colour which is fairly light in consistency. It isn't thick or creamy, nor is watery or thin - it's just about in between all four of those statements whilst feeling breathable on the skin. It doesn't have a very noticeable scent, nor does it feel greasy either. When rubbed into the face it leaves a really subtle boost. It very subtly perks the skin up - in fact it is so subtle that you really have to look close enough to see it has been applied. I only used a tiny squeeze to cover my entire face, although if you wanted more coverage then you could apply more.

I found that this primer soaked into the skin really quickly and makes the face look a bit more healthier and radiant than before. Even under foundation it still lifts the skin and makes it appear perkier and brighter, although I wouldn't say it made my foundation last any longer on the skin than if I were to not apply it. The Miss Sporty Insta Glow Primer also works wonderfully well as a highlight on top of foundation. Due to its very subtle pearlescent sheen it makes for a lovely highlight along the cheekbones when patted in gently.

I think if you were after a budget primer then this is one definitely to try, It is subtle, and lightweight whilst leaving the skin looking brighter and perkier than before. For £3.49 I think it is definitely worth a try next time you walk past a Miss Sporty stand.