UK Beauty and Lifestyle Blog

October 30, 2012

BUDGET BEAUTY #5: MUA Lipstick Shade 11

MUA's £1 lipsticks are a budget beauty must try. At the moment there are 16 shades in the range and there is a varied selection of shades to suit a variety of skin tones. I own four MUA lipsticks but Shade 11 was the first one I bought and it remains my favourite.

The lipstick's packaging is black and silver and although it is distinctively plastic and cheap it doesn't feel as cheap as it could for being a £1 lipstick. I've had no problems with my packaging breaking, I can still twist my lipsticks up and down without a problem and the lid hasn't cracked or anything like that. 

The lipstick itself is good quality for the price. As you can see from the swatches above it provides opaque colour in two layers but one layer of lipstick can be applied for a lighter, more natural wash of colour. It feels a lot like a lip balm on the lips and doesn't last very well, only an hour or so, before needing to be reapplied. With Shade 11 I don't find this something that bothers me though as this shade is very much a 'my lips but better' colour (when just applying one layer). I tend to use this lipstick on days when I'm not really wearing much make up but still want a little help looking my best. 

Lastly, at the end of the lipstick is a small pot of colour which is actually a little but of extra lipstick. So when you see these lipsticks in Superdrug stores you can trust the the colour at the end of the lipstick is an accurate representation of the product as it is actual lipstick!  You can try and use this little extra bit of lipstick but, as you can see in the photo above, I had a go at using it and it was quite dry and only came out in a lump. It's a nice idea though and it makes it really easy to find the right shade when you're picking out which lipstick you want from your collection.

All in all I would recommend trying these lipsticks (especially 11, as I think it has the best colour and quality of the four that I've tried) because for £1 these products are good value. You can buy them in Superdrug stores where there is a MUA stand, on the Superdrug website or on MUA's website here.

Have you tried any MUA lip products, if you have what is your favourite?


October 29, 2012

BUDGET BEAUTY #4: The Body Shop's Eyeshadows

I love, love, love the Body Shop's cosmetics so when I saw that their eyeshadows had been reduced to £2.50 in their recent sale I couldn't say no to picking a couple up. My flatmate also has a discount card that she picked up during our University's freshers' fair so I got an extra 20% meaning that these only cost me £2 each! That's a massive 75% off their normal price.

First up is shade 07 (Conker), the only way I can think to describe this is that its a sort of light brown/grey with a champagne-y shimmer to it. It's a gorgeous base colour that really makes my blue eyes pop and because it isn't too brown I think it would do the same for green eyes. I can't fault the shade, and the quality of the eye shadow is amazing. I've had it on all day (wearing it as I type this!) and it hasn't budged or creased at all. I have a problem with eye shadows creasing as I have hooded eyelids but this eyeshadow is just amazing and hasn't built up in my crease at all. Below are some swatches that were taken in day light:

The second eyeshadow I chose is shade 37 (Pink Champagne) which is a warm pink with a similar champagne-y shimmer to it as shade 07. It's gorgeous and really wearable, I don't usually wear pink shades but this one is lovely. It is the same high quality as the other eyeshadow and I haven't experienced any smudging or creasing which is just awesome for any of you out there with hooded eyelids. I particularly like how buildable these eyeshadows are as it means that the same shadow can be used in very different make-up looks. When applied wet this is quite a striking colour, but when used dry it can be as subtle or dramatic as you want it to be. Check out the below swatches to see what I mean:

These eyeshadows are still available online and in stores for the very low price of £2.50, I couldn't love them more to be honest and I'm thinking of picking up some more brown shades as they're the ones I tend to use the most often. Let me know if you've bought or if you go on to buy any, I'd be interested in hearing about what the other shades are like :) 


October 28, 2012

REVIEW: Nivea Lip Butter Raspberry Rose

This is a recently released Nivea Lip Butter flavour and I think the scent of it is one of those scents that you'll either really love or find a bit overwhelming. To me it smells like strawberry refreshers, really sweet  with the raspberry scent being quite strong. I love it because it feels like an indulgence when you use it because it smells so much like sweets!

The colour of it is a creamy baby pink but when applied it looks a little bit more whitish like lip butters tend to. If applied moderately this is very wearable out but you could also layer this on a little thicker before you went to bed for instance. It really does have the consistency of a butter rather than a balm so you don't have to put that much on as it is very thick and moisturising so a little goes a long way. 

Every time I go to sniff this I get a smile on my face because to my nose this smells absurdly nice, this is a winner for me and is going straight in my hand bag replacing the tubes of Carmex that have been in there for three weeks or so now. Sorry Carmex but this little tub just smells too good!

You can find this in Superdrug stores or online for £1.49.

Have you tried this lip butter, or the other new Caramel Cream flavour, if so what did you think of it? 


October 27, 2012

REVIEW: The Body Shop's Hemp High Balm

The Body Shop are having a mid season sale at the moment, jettisoning all their old stock for seriously low prices. This Hemp Moisture High Balm was in the sale for only £1 so I didn't see any harm in trying it, especially as I'd only very recently heard a rave review about their hemp hand cream from my friend Kate.

This Moisture Balm, however, was a little disappointing but only because it turned out to be a completely different sort of product to what I was expecting. There wasn't a tester in store so I did sort of buy it blind and what it turned out to be was essentially a hemp vaseline. It certainly has the same gel like consistency of vaseline but it does't contain any petroleum. Soyabean oil is first on its list of ingredients, followed closely by Olive oil, Coconut Oil, Beeswax and Shea butter

This is something that I think would be great for very dry elbows and knees, or knuckles in my case, I get really dry knuckles! This is especially good for those of you out there who don't like using products that contain petroleum and I've popped into two different Body Shop stores in Leeds and both had a large supply of these so there's still time to stock up if this interests you. It's also available in The Body Shop's online store here.

I'm still keen to try some products from the hemp range, do any of you use the Hemp Hand Moisturiser?


October 26, 2012

REVIEW: Arbonne Makeup Primer

One thing I struggle with is visible pores and it doesn't seem to matter how conscientious I am in my cleansing routine. Although not ideal, when they make me feel self conscious I like to think that wearing make-up is the solution. However, all too often wearing powder or foundation can exaggerate them. Using a primer before I use foundation is the trick that I've learnt when it comes to minimizing pores, but even then choosing the right Primer can be difficult. I'd tried four other primers this year alone before I'd been sent the product that I'm reviewing today; by Maybelline, L'Oreal and Benefit. None of these primers worked amazingly for me but I'd continued to use them because I didn't know that primers could be better, until now anyway!

It comes in a rather simple box which I liked, partly because it testified to it being a higher end product and also because I like keeping my make-up in their boxes where I can (is that just me?). The bottle itself isn't exactly pretty, it's subtle and non-assuming, but I could easily identify it from its packaging in a drawer which will save lots of time and frustration.

Unlike other primers I've tried this one has a pump dispenser which makes it easy to use, hygienic and less messy than primers that come in pots or even tubes. It also feels sturdy enough to survive falls and knocks, which is essential for someone as clumsy as I am.

The consistency is that of a gel-liquid and when applied it has a very even, smooth, satin texture. You really don't need a lot of product to cover your entire face which is great as it means that you won't leave you feeling like you're wearing a heavy layer of make-up. It is advertised specifically as visually diminishing fine lines and pores to create a flawless canvas for make-up application. I can't really comment on its effects on fine lines, but its effect on pores was noticeable. I was suspicious of how good it was and also tested it on just half my face doing a foundation vs. foundation plus primer test and it was obvious that foundation plus primer was the winner, my flatmate can attest to this!  But the thing that made this a must have for me is its mattifying properties. I usually have to apply powder or touch up my foundation during the day due to my oily skin but when I used this my skin didn't look oily when I checked it at midday or in the evening.

One of the main draws of this primer over others is its ingredients. Arbonne's products are formulated without animal products, parabens mineral oils etc. (Read more about this here) and the primer itself is Vitamin rich. I feel a lot more comfortable using products likes these on my face than those that are cheap or chemical heavy, especially primers and foundations as these cover the entire face. I think for this reason, even though this is a lot more expensive than high street primers retailing at £25*, I would definitely consider repurchasing it and would recommend it to others out there looking for help masking pesky pores or dealing with oily skin. It doesn't cost much more than Benefit's Porefessional and I think this it is more effective.

Arbonne's Makeup Primer, along with other Arbonne products, is available online here for £25*. Alternatively you can contact an Arbonne representative, such as Louise Paterson [], where as a preferred client you could enjoy a 20% discount off the RRP.

Have you tried any Arbonne make-up? What's your favourite primer?



October 25, 2012

REVIEW: Sleek Pout Paint

I absolutely love Sleek's lipsticks so when I saw their Pout Paint when I was out shopping I decided that I should give them some attention to see if they could knock my favourite longer-lasting, lip stains off their top spots.

Sadly, however, I just didn't get on too well with this product, mainly because of the way the product is dispensed (see above image). The product in the little tube has a tendency to separate so you have to squeeze and shake it before even attempting to use it. Then you have to be careful to only squeeze out a very small drop of product either onto your finger or onto a surface where you can then apply it from using a lip brush. The messiness of having to use a finger or lip brush made this very un-travel-friendly. I wouldn't ever try and reapply this after having a coffee or before a lecture as I would make a mess!

The product itself is highly, highly pigmented and, despite coming in a tiny tube, will really last a long time as you only need a tiny amount of the Pout Paint to cover all of your lips. It does last very well on the lips and feels like something  between a non-sticky gloss and a liquid-lipstick. It isn't, however, at all staining. The shade I have is Rosette (a very bright pink) which is a lovely bright lip colour, perfect for evenings out... if only for the applicator!

I think if you could get over the design of the applicator then this is something which could become a handbag staple. It doesn't take up room, is good value for money, durable plastic packaging etc. And the idea with the Pout Paints is to buy a couple of colours and then you can customize lip colours by mixing the colours you have to create unique shades. It's a great idea, and they're very affordable so you could buy a couple without it being a huge splurge, but this process just isn't one you can use on the go! I have to say that I personally wouldn't recommend this product but I'm not saying that it isn't without its merits, I can see why people like it. 

You can purchase this for Sleek's Pout Paints for £4.99 online on Sleek's website or in Superdrug stores.

Have you tried Sleek's Pout Paints? How did you find them?


October 24, 2012

REVIEW: Palmers Daily Calming Lotion Lightweight Moistuiser

I picked this up at the same time as I bought Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Daily Cleanser Gel and I've given both of these products a good try over the last week. However, I have to say that the Korres' moisturiser that I found in T.K. Maxx really stole the show from Palmer's Facial Lotion so this product has been somewhat sidelined since, but it still deserves a review.

The first thing you may notice is that the tube is a very generous size (100ml) compared to other mositurisers in the same price bracket. I think this is great, especially as this product is quite light, as it means you don't have to worry about finishing it too quickly. This moisturiser is designed with sensitive skin in mind and I have to testify to its suitability as my skin can be incredibly sensitive and I didn't have any problems using this. 

I do have very 'rosy' cheeks so I like the idea that this mosituriser aims to help reduce that redness. I haven't been using it enough to be able to tell if it really works (blame Korres!) but it does provide good moisturisation despite not being very rich. I used this in the evenings and woke up in the morning with noticeably smooth soft skin.

My only complaint with this is similar to the complaint I made about the cleansing gel; the smell. Just like with the cleansing gel this product claims to be fragrance free and certainly it has nothing of the cocoa butter scent that Palmer's famous body lotion has. However, because they've aimed to remove fragrance you're left with a slightly (and it is really only very slight, I'm just very picky about scents) chemical-y scent. It isn't anything obnoxious and its only really noticeable if you purposefully give the product a good sniff, it isn't so bad when applied. For me the smell is enough to put me off wanting to repurchase this, as it did with the cleansing gel, but the quality of both products is very good for the price. 

I think that this is worth a try as it has a lovely consistency that makes it perfect for younger skin that doesn't need heavy or rich daily moisturisation.  The amount of product you get is great for those on a tighter budget as it will last twice as long as many of those 50ml pots of moisturiser. Oh! And I forgot to mention the packaging. The packaging is plastic so you can't break it like you can with glass packaging and it squeezes out of a nozzle so its more hygienic to use than a pot or tub. The packaging made me warm to it, I've found that its great for travelling with and I love that you can stand it up so it takes up less space around the bathroom sink. 

You can buy this online from Superdrug, or in store, where it is currently half price at £2.97.

Have you tried any of the Palmer's facial skin care range?


October 22, 2012

REVIEW: Korres Pomegranate Moisturising Cream-Gel

I had a particularly successful shopping expedition this week where I came upon a whole cache of incredibly reasonably priced Korres products, and when it comes to Korres I completely lose the power to say no.

This moisturiser ticked so many different boxes for me that my shopper's need to take a pretty product home overwhelmed my reason! I have a lot (and when I say a lot I mean a lot!) of unopened moisturisers at home begging to be opened and enjoyed but this little beauty has beat all of them to the top and has won a place in my daily skincare routine.

The packaging is gorgeous, the pot is made out of glass and looks and feels expensive (at least to me when I compare it to other moisturisers I own). It also smells pungently, but not overwhelmingly, of pomegranate. This is a scent I love in a moisturiser, sparked by a brief affair with a pomegranate scented Weleda moisturiser which I heartily enjoyed. 

When you get down to actually using the product itself you find exactly what is advertised  a cream-gel, it is quite light and I can really layer onto my face without any irritation or increase in oiliness. On another occasion I also tested out how effective it is if used very sparingly (so as to prolong the 'life' of the tub) and even when applied less than generously it still leaves you with soft, moisturised skin. I think given how quick this sinks into the skin it makes for a perfect day cream, I'd probably look for something a little thicker and richer to use as a night cream.

This moisturiser cost me £7.99 but after having a chance to test it out I really do think that had I paid the more for it I would still have been happy. I found it on Feel Unique for £19 (more than I would ever pay for a moisturiser at this time of my life) but I think if you can afford it then this is a really lovely product that is worth the money.

Have you found any bargains in T.K. Maxx recently?



October 21, 2012

REVIEW: Bourjois Clubbing Eyeliner

This has been my favourite liquid eyeliner for a long time now, and you can tell that this particular tube has been much loved from its wear! It has incredible lasting power- it doesn't need to be reapplied during the day and it doesn't smudge! It's also intensely black which allows it to give a bold line.

The brush, which as you can see below, is very thin which allows you to create very precise, subtle lines (which as I have hooded eye lids is essential). Recently I've been trying to branch out and try new liquid eyeliners (keep your eyes peeled for upcoming reviews), but this one has been my staple for years now!

I think at £6.99 it is very well priced for the quality it delivers especially as I haven't come across a better high street liquid eyeliner (yet). My tube is actually running dangerously low so I know that I'm going to have to start using up all the other tubes I've hoarded, which is good for you as there will be lots of lovely comparative reviews upcoming!
You can find Bourjois' Clubbing Eyeliner in Boots and Superdrug stores for £6.99 or online here.
What's your favourite liquid eyeliner? Have you tried any of Bourois' Clubbing range?


October 20, 2012

REVIEW: Benefit Bad Gal Lash mini

If you bought the magazine InStyle this month, which came with lovely Benefit freebies, you can head to your local Benefit Beauty Bar (in larger Boots'stores for instance, check Benefit's website for your local Beauty bar) and pick up your free Benefit Bad Gal Lash mascara! I picked mine up last Friday whilst I was out shopping and I've been wearing it all week.

I owned a full size version of this a really long time ago but I remember being upset when I had to get rid of it, so I was keen to try this mini out to see if it was as good as I remember it being.

And good news folks, it really is a lovely mascara! I'm surprised at how much I like it given that it isn't waterproof, as I almost exclusively wear waterproof mascara. However, even without being waterproof it lasts incredibly well with no panda eyes or smudging in sight. I was also incredibly pleased with the brush! For me, brushes are what make or break a mascara and this brush is big enough to cover all my lashes but small enough to not get mascara on my eyelids. The colour is also a nice intense black so it is perfect for smokey eye looks as well as day to day wear (if you like very black lashes during the day). 

Given that this was a freebie extra I am extremely pleased! Do make sure you pick up yours if bought InStyle this month, and if you haven't bought it then I would definitely recommend doing so. I've been loving my Benefit minis this week (Sun Beam and Cha Cha tint- you can follow the links to see if you like the look of them) and this mascara is a welcome addition to my make-up collection!

Have you picked up yours yet? If you have, what are your thoughts about the mascara?



October 19, 2012

REVLON: Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain Swatches in Honey, Rendezvous and Romantic

I know this review is a little late, but these lip balm stains have been a staple in my hand bag since they were released so I thought 'better late than never!'. I have three of these, as you can see from my photo, in Honey, Rendezvous and Romantic.

These balm stains are all in gorgeous shades which layer up very nicely on the lips so that you can use them to create both subtle and more dramatic shades. They're not drying in the slightest, although I think they're claim at being a lip 'balm' isn't quite the truth as they're not exactly hydrating either. They last well on the lips and once the initial glossiness of application fades they leave a stain behind on the lips that lasts really well! You won't have to worry about getting product on your teeth or bleeding and their 'wind up' function means that you don't have to go through the hassle of sharpening them regularly either.

Honey, Rendezvous and Romantic
The shade 'Crush', which isn't featured here, is a dark berry colour which would be perfect for an Autumn/Winter lip colour. I think I might just have to add it to my collection sometime soon! Overall, I would definitely recommend these lip balm stains, I'm getting a lot of wear out of them (and quite a few compliments too).

You can find Revlon's Lip Balm Stains in Boots and Superdrug stores for £7.99, or online here.

Do you have a favourite lip stain? Is it one of Revlon's Lip Balm Stains, and if so which one do you like?



REVIEW: Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Daily Cleansing Gel

I very happily stumbled upon this product in Superdrug recently and was surprised as I didn't know that Palmers did a facial skin care range! I couldn't help but buy this, especially as Superdrug had a 50% discount on the entire range. [I also picked up the Daily Facial Lotion so look out for that review in the near future!]

I'm not 100% sure if I like this product or not. I know that on the packaging advertises that this is 'fragrance free', usually something I look for in skin care, but it isn't quite true. Although it doesn't have the signature Palmer's Cocoa Butter smell it does smell quite strongly of soap! It made me feel quite nervous when I first used it as the smell really is very soapy and soapy cleansing gels normally are not all that kind on sensitive skin. However, despite the smell it really is very skin friendly. It didn't irritate my skin in any way (no red cheeks or sore eyes)  but it did provide what felt like a thorough cleanse, my skin was squeaky clean after using it. It didn't live up to its claim of not leaving skin 'dry or tight' though as it did dry my skin out a little making the use of a moisturiser after using this product essential. 

It really foams up on contact with water so a small amount goes a long way and I can imagine this bottle will last quite a long time. I've been using it morning and night without it being too overpowering for my skin and it hasn't badly dried it out (but I do use moisturiser both in the mornings and at night). I know for a fact that I dislike the smell and although it doesn't put me off using it, when it comes to cleansing time the smell really kills any possible excitement there could have ever been. That being said I do like the effects of the product and my skin is looking clearer so it really is a question of if you can put up with the soapy aroma then this product is something I would recommend. However, if you're looking for an indulgent scent (or if you really do want a fragrance free product) then this isn't for you. 

Palmers Cocoa Butter Formula Daily Cleansing Gel is still half price in Superdrug and online, and delivery on any order is free for a few more days so if you are interested in trying it then you can buy it AND have it delivered for just £1.97.

What cleanser are you using right now? Would you recommend it?


October 18, 2012

Benefit High Beam, Sun Beam and Moon Beam Swatches

This post is mainly just to show you swatches of all three of these products side by side so that if you're in the market to pick one of these lovely highlighters up from a Benefit counter you can make the right choice!

High Beam, Sun Beam, Moon Beam

All three of these highlighters blend like a dream and a small amount goes a long way. My swatches were done using a pretty healthy dose of each product, I would personally only dot a small amount of product along my cheek bones (maybe 4 dots on each cheek) and then I would maybe put one or two under my eyebrows and blend all the dots out. These swatches are mainly to give you an idea of the colour of each product!

As you can see High Beam is a very light white-pearl shade highlighter, Sun Beam is a warm golden highlighter and Moon Beam is a creamy apricot shade. I tend to use High beam the most but Moon Beam is slightly more subtle a shade and Sun Beam looks great on tanned skin with bronzer. I'd recommend all three of these products for their quality, wearability and their durability! 

And just so you have an idea of the applicator these products come with, I've taken photos of the brushes below:

High Beam
Sun Beam (Sample Brush)

Moon Beam

Hope this has been helpful! You can find these products in large Boots stores or online or on Benfit's website.

What is your favourite highlighter? 



October 17, 2012

REVIEW: Bourjois Clubbing Mascara

This is one of my favourite mascaras ever, I've actually gone through quite a few tubes of this since I discovered it. The colour is intensely black, it isn't too runny or dry and as it is a 'clubbing' mascara its been designed to be waterproof and durable. I've worn this mascara from morning until night (many a time) without panda eyes or smudging. Also, check out the brush!

The brush isn't one of those overly massive brushes which get mascara everywhere that you don't want it but when you zoom in, like I've done in the above photo, you can see how the bristles are designed to catch all of your lashes. This brush is one of my favourite brushes, it really does do wonderful things for my lashes.

You can find Bourjois' Clubbing Mascara in Superdrug and Boots stores or online here.

Do you have a mascara that you keep buying over and over?



REVIEW: Nivea Visage Daily Essentials Facial Cleansing Wipes

Okay, so I know that this might seem like a boring post but these beauties are the only thing that have been able to get my super-waterproof mascara off me without irritating my eyes!

I don't know why they've worked so well as they're pretty 'sensitive skin' friendly so don't contain any fragrance or alcohol, but they're good! Much better than my Boots own brand face wipes that I was using before. They feel quite dry for face wipes (even when I first opened the pack, they haven't dried out or anything) but they remove make up like a dream. 

As they're on half price at Superdrug at the moment I would definitely recommend you try some! You can find them in Superdrug stores on online here for £1.47! Superdrug have free delivery at the moment too so you can have these beauties delivered to you for no extra cost.

Do you have a favourite brand or type of face wipes? I'm always on the look out for good ones for my lazy evenings or just to help get off my waterproof mascara!



October 16, 2012

REVIEW: L'Oreal Paris Elvive Full Restore Conditioning Replenish Spray

I love leave in conditioners, mainly because they save me time in the mornings which means I can have a few extra precious minutes of sleep! I bought this product a week or so ago and have been using it ever since as an alternative to the Herbal Essences leave in product that I'd been using previously. 

The benefits of this product are that it is a spray formula (rather than a pump) so you don't have any wastage and it is incredibly quick and easy to apply. It also means the product is thinner, I would describe it as quite watery rather than creamy. This makes it great for every day use as it doesn't weigh the hair down whilst still giving a good level of conditioning.

This isn't my ideal leave in conditioner (I think I actually prefer something thicker) but it does work and its left my hair soft and shiny. It's also very affordable and easy to get your hands on! I picked mine up for £1.95 from Superdrug as its currently on a half price discount.

What hair conditioners have you been loving recently?



October 15, 2012

Benefit: Posie tint, Cha Cha tint and Benetint Swatches

All three of these Benefit samples I picked up in magazines over the last year (the Cha Cha tint most recently in InStyle magazine). I just thought I'd swatch them all together so that if you were considering buying any of them you can have a look at what the three shades compare to one another.


October 12, 2012

Nail Art

I'm not that adventurous when it comes to my nails so I have to place all the credit on my lovely flatmate, Josie, who is always experimenting with the cutest nail designs. She was very happy for me to let you all have a look at the photos she's taken of her nails over the last few weeks, I hope you like them! [This is going to be a picture heavy post]


October 11, 2012

My Favourite Lip Balms

We'll start off with my two Body Shop Lip Butters, one is in 'Sweet Lemon' flavour which Tom bought be for my birthday whilst we were travelling this Summer and the other is the Dragon Fruit flavour which I picked up last month. Both smell gorgeous and are richly moisturising, I can see myself repurchasing these over and over again as I use almost daily before I go to bed.
© One Little Vice | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Designed by pipdig