Wednesday, May 06, 2015

5 Models Own Nail Polish Spring/Summer Picks

This month, I'm starting a makeup course where I'm meant to keep my nails short and I'm not allowed to wear nail varnish for hygiene reasons. So naturally, I suddenly felt compelled to wear all of the nail polish to make up for the last year of rarely wearing any. Over the last few months Models Own opened up a bottle shop in town and I only recently came across it because I've been trying to not be so reckless with my spending. However, when I came across the shop, I was immediately reeled in with all the colour.

Top to Bottom - Oval Plum, Purple Haze, Chrome Mauve & Colour Explosion over Mint Icing

Diamond Luxe Oval Plum - For the millionth time, I have serious magpie problems. This was the first polish that got my attention. The subtle shimmer looks magical in the bottle. The Diamond Luxe formula was easily one of the best ones and lasted for around 5 days before signs of chipping and that was just with one coat.

Purple Haze Glitter Polish - Again with the sparkles! It's actually just bright purple glitter with a clear base. So you can mix and match it with different nail colours. Personally, I prefer it over a dark plum/black nail varnish. It acts as a top coat and naturally as with all glitter polishes, how long it lasts isn't an issue, it's getting it off that's the problem!

Chrome Mauve - This is one of the fastest drying nail polishes I've ever owned. I can only assume it's due to the finish. I've never been a huge fan of metallic shades but the purple definitely won me over. My only critique with this is that if the nail isn't completely cleaned from your previous manicure, you'll end up with random bumps on the nails.

Colour Explosion - Is very aptly named. Can you believe, the same day I purchased this I ended up leaking half of the bottle because I didn't secure the lid before throwing it back into the bag. Colour Explosion is part of the festival range and is a clear polish with hex glitters of various sizes in blue, silver, yellow and orange. It's not great coverage which I'm fine with as it makes it easier to change the amount of glitter you apply.

Mint Icing - Immediately after purchasing, I began questioning it. Why did I get this? There's a million pastel mint polishes out there and I definitely own a few already. However, I can kind of justify this one as it's less pastel and a rather bright almost neon mint shade. As with all pastel nail polishes, mint icing needed a good 3 layers of nail polish for full coverage. I was initially surprised by how little one layer covered.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Life Lately | April in Photos

A while ago, I decided to focus on only beauty blogging as it was the only kind of blog that would interest me. Lately however, I've been more interested in more lifestyle and travel blogs and for an even longer time I've been debating whether or not to venture outside of just beauty blogging and finally I've decided why not? I've yet to see a blogger that doesn't evolve and mix up the topics they write about. I'm starting things off with a monthly roundup.

1. It was warm and sunny over the Easter break so we decided to cool ourselves by checking out a new-ish ice cream place, Paradice Gelateria, on the Harborne high street.

2. So later on this month I'll be starting a makeup artistry course. In the handbook it specifies that we're not allowed nail polish and have to keep our nails short. So in April, I decided to treat myself to a gel manicure that would last me the month up until the course.

3. Game of Thrones time is my favourite time of the year, we tend to stay up quite late and watch the show the same time it airs in the US. For the first episode I decided to make a Game of Thrones themed snack and baked a lemon cake, which is Sansa Stark's favourite dish.

4. For the last year, I've not been wearing nail polish. Naturally the moment I know I'm not going to be able to wear any for my course, I felt compelled to purchase a bunch of new ones. Derp.

5. My 3rd hair bleach session results. I'd love to say my hair transformation was a snap decision but it's taking ages for me to get my hair light enough to apply dye over it. It's quite blonde and Barbie for now but it's still too yellow, making the turquoise dye quite green.

6. As nice as it is to move in with my partner, I've been craving for some space of my own. Especially as I've been single for most of my life and am used to my own space. So I'm ecstatic to finally have a bookshelf of my own that I can now fill up with all of the comics and nerd books.

7. So of course, I've been getting into some new comics. As Avengers released in April, I thought I'd try actually reading some Marvel comics in preparation.

8. There's been a lot of buzz around the luxury Everyman Cinemas that have recently opened up in Birmingham. I finally got to check it out watching Age of Ultron and I will definitely be returning for another peanut butter milkshake.

9. At the end of the month, I attended a lovely blogger event run by Ting at Alex Mae studios where we took part in a few games, experiences beauty demos and learned how to improve our photography.

If you follow me and any other Birmingham based bloggers, you'll probably have noticed a lot of us raving about the Botanist. I didn't expect much but wanted to check it out and there's nothing I can flaw them on. The vibe, the drinks, the food and the decor, everything was perfect. I definitely see myself returning. If you're not planning a trip to Birmingham soon, they have restaurants in Leeds, Nottingham, Manchester and Chester that you can go to instead.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Urban Decay Afterglow 8-Hour Powder Blush in Quiver First Impressions

Lately, I've been cutting back on makeup spending. I admit it may not seem that way and that I still probably spend more money on it than the average woman but it's a personal improvement. However, I had to make the exception with Urban Decay's summer nights collection which has officially launched in the UK as off today. The summer collection consists of 12 new lip glosses and blushers, 8 new eyeshadows and a new lip primer. Out of everything in the collection, the blushers stuck out the most to me.

The packaging's gunmetal packaging matches the rest of the brand's recently revamped products. The packaging can double as a mirror as it's easy to check out your reflection which also makes it a nightmare to photograph. It also features a see-through fishnet logo cutout to easily identify what shade you're reaching for.

Originally, I had my eye on Bittersweet, which was a bright matte purple blush but felt like I had too much purple in my life. So instead, I thought I'd try out Quiver, a matte bright red blush and it'd fill up a gap in my current blush lineup. I tend to play it safe with blush colours so figuring out how to wear this without feeling too clownish will be challenging for me.

Urban Decay's new afterglow blush is easily one of the most pigmented blushers I've owned. As it's such a bold colour, I'd definitely recommend using less product and building the colour to something you're comfortable with. As to whether it's long-lasting, I found that as I didn't apply a heavy amount on, it only lasted around 6 hours on my cheeks. The formula in the pan feels silky but a little powdery at the same time although it may not be the same with other shades. It's quite blendable but I'll admit to owning better blushers than this.

The Urban Decay afterglow blushes are priced at £19 each with almost 7g of product which is quite affordable compared to some other mid range brands. Although steep for those who are used to drugstore items. Ultimately, I can still see myself trying out some other blushers.

The new Urban Decay summer nights range is currently available at Debenhams in the UK.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

5 Easy Ways to Make Your Lipstick Last Longer

Recently I've began getting into the habit of reapplying my lipstick, why? It takes forever to get through a tube of lipstick, so why not make sure my lipstick is always in perfect condition? However, there are some occasions when the last thing I want to do is worry about the state of my face and just enjoy myself. So, here are a couple of ways I make my lip colour last longer.

  Line Those Lips
The simplest way to make my lips last a long night out is by using a lip liner. I've never overdrawn my lips personally. I just follow my natural lip shape and colour it in. Finish it off by layering your chosen lipstick shade over. My personal favourite lip liners are Urban Decay's 24/7 lip pencils but my Illamasqua pencils do a great job too. I find they prolong the wear time quite well. However, they can be on the dry side, so you may want to use a lipbalm before hand.

  Opt For A Matte Finish
While creamy lipsticks feel more comfortable on the lips, they certainly don't last particularly long. Occasionally they'll leave a light stain at best. If you really want a shade to last a while, wear a matte lipstick. I find they're the best finish for longevity.

  Skip Out On The Gloss
The number of times I have applied a gloss on top of a long lasting lipstick, only to find that my lip colour has completely disappeared within two hours! I am not a fan of gloss and don't buy them at all any more. However, I can appreciate the finish it gives. If you don't feel like skipping out entirely, applying as little as possible instead. If I wear gloss, I'll only apply a tiny dot and spread it with a lip brush.

  Blot Those lips
I admit blotting is still somewhat new to me and I was sceptical at first but I found it worked. Blotting correctly removes excess oils and leaves the pigment behind. To blot, apply lipstick then lightly dab tissue against your lips, then reapply.

  Try A Lip Primer
I think everyone out there uses an eye primer before applying eyeshadow these days, but how many of us have even heard of lip primers? They apply like a balm or gloss and essentially improve the pigmentation and wear time, just like eyeshadow primer.

These are the 5 ways I make my lipstick last longer, I hope these are useful to some of you out there. Feel free to share any other ways there are to make them last longer!
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