Thursday, 26 July 2012

Beauty Bargain: Collection 2000 Extreme 24 Hour Felt Tip Liner

Before I bought this eyeliner I used Rimmel's Exaggerate Eyeliner, but I've always been intrigued by felt tip eyeliners so I decided to give this a try. Collection 2000 Extreme 24 Hour Felt Tip Liner costs a mere £2.99 and for this what you see is what you get. The product is probably about as long as a pen and quite slim, with large felt tip end. 

For the price I'm surprised about how pigmented the colour is - it's very black! It's not at all grey. As you can see from the picture it's also very easy to achieve a thin line and build it up into a thicker line. 

I personally find this felt tip liner easier to apply than a normal brush type eyeliner; there's no excess to deal with and the tip is so precise that it's simple to achieve a straight line. I only wear black liquid eyeliner for nights out and a eyeliner flick is a must for me, I just love the look! In general I'm not the best at doing them - I take ages as I find it hard to get both eyes to match - but I think it's easier to create the flicks with this eyeliner. However this does lead me to the only negative of Collection 2000's offering - when doing flicks if you angle the pen so the tip is facing upwards for too long, the formula doesn't come out very well. Exactly like a pen! 

I haven't worn this for 24 hours but it lasts through a night out! Yet it's easy to remove with face wipes or makeup remover. 

I've had this for quite awhile, but as I don't use it daily I can't accurately judge how long it's lasted so far unfortunately.

The Verdict

For £2.99 I think Collection 2000 Extreme 24 Hour Felt Tip Liner is a great budget eyeliner. I don't think it's the best eyeliner out there, but for me it does the job really well and I will definitely re-purchase. 

This eyeliner is also available in the colours blue, purple and teal. To view the range click here.

What's your favourite liquid eyeliner? Are you a fan of felt tip liners?

Beauty Bird xx

Monday, 23 July 2012

Tag: Blogging Love

I first saw this tag on Miss Jayne Becca's blog and thought it was such an interesting post, I absolutely loved reading it! So I've finally gotten round to writing my own. The aim of this tag is to share the reasons we love blogging with the readers of our blog. In the tag you should give five reasons why you love blogging, your blogging aim, your top blogging tip and the name of one blogger who has inspired you along the way!

So here goes! 

Five Reasons Why I Love Blogging

1. Passion - I have a passion for all things beauty, nails and skincare related and blogging is a great way to express that, sharing my thoughts and opinions with other like minded people. It's turned into a hobby and I love it! I don't really have any other hobbies (unless you count shopping!) so it's great to have something else to focus on and keep me busy.

2. New Products - I have discovered so many new brands and products since I started blogging. It's a little dangerous (I have an ever increasing wishlist!) but I love having more options :-) I've also tried products that I would have never tried before, simply because I wouldn't have been aware of them, or realised how amazing they were!

3. Blogging Community - I didn't realise there was such a sense of blogging community when I started out, especially on Twitter. I have 'met' so many lovely, supportive people online, there's always someone to chat to, someone who will make you feel better, someone who will help with a blog problem or otherwise, someone who will give you advice on a product or how to use a product. And of course the people who leave you lovely comments on your blog. It's really amazing. 

4. Honest Reviews - I absolutely prefer reading blogs now to reading magazines- you get more much more detail about a product and more honest opinions. I always see good reviews in magazines but never a bad one, unless it's been reviewed by a reader. Blogs really help me decide whether to purchase a product or not. If I've helped just one person make a decision about a product I've reviewed on my blog, that's a pretty great achievement for me!

5. Confidence - I really had no confidence that I would be any good at writing a blog when I first thought of it, but any feedback, comments, page views or followers I've received have really spurred me on. It makes me think I CAN do this. I've also been a bit more adventurous with makeup. I hope my confidence will grow and that one day I'll be brave and confident enough to reveal 'me' - but until then I'm remaining anonymous. (I do wonder if this holds my blog back though.)

My Blogging Aim

At the moment I have quite a few - to post at least 3 times a week and to vary my posts a little more- perhaps venture sometimes into lifestyle and fashion related posts. I also want to improve my pictures - I use a mix of my iPhone and digital camera at the moment, but I want to buy a new digital camera with more megapixels and optical zoom. My iPhone has more megapixels than my current digital camera!! Lastly I want to learn how to do collage pictures for things like wishlists, so I don't have to pester my boyfriend to do it for me!

My Blogging Tip

Try not to compare yourself to other bloggers, everyone's blog is different and YOU have to be what makes it different. Draw inspiration from your favourite bloggers (without copying!) but put your own personality and style into it. 

My Blogging Inspiration

Before I started blogging I set up a Twitter account for it first and one of the first blogs I found through Twitter was Makeup Monster (formerly Smokey Eyes MUA). I love her writing style, the honesty in her reviews and how she replies to every comment she gets. She is also generally a lovely lady and really friendly, both on her blog and on Twitter. I also felt like she was really encouraging when I started out my blog.

I hope you enjoyed reading this rather wordy tag! If you join in with this tag please send me the link so I can have a read :-)

Beauty Bird xx


Friday, 20 July 2012

Beauty Cheat Sheet: Shaving

I love a good beauty cheat, especially if it saves me a bit of money (that I can then spend elsewhere hehe!). So the idea of a beauty cheat is being able to use a product that you might already have in your house for an alternative use. Or it at least costs you less if you have to buy it especially! 

This beauty cheat is shaving. I find that proper shaving products like Veet or Gillette for shaving your legs are pretty expensive, so instead I use... hair conditioner. I've been using Tesco Smooth Conditioner in Coconut, which is just £0.88 for 750ml! It has lasted me absolutely aaaaaaages. The formula is pretty thick so there's a decent barrier between your razor and your skin. I don't get any cuts or nicks and it personally doesn't irritate my legs. Plus they feel super smooth afterwards.

I also read that baby oil is good to use for shaving, so I've given this a go too! I used Tesco Baby Moisturising Oil, which is £1.79 for 500ml. It works just as well as conditioner but I did find that I was a bit more careful when shaving, as the razor feels a lot closer to your skin! But again, hello super smooth legs! 

I'm hoping to make this a (fairly) regular post! Would you guys like to see more of this sort of thing? Are there any beauty cheats that you recommend I try?

Beauty Bird xx

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

NOTD: Purplicious

So my obsession with sparkly nails continues! This is the first thing I have ever picked up from the Topshop makeup range and I was pretty impressed with how restrained I was picking up one item! Especially their nail varnish - there is such a great range of colours, I will definitely go back and get some more.

How gorgeous is this colour?! It's called "Eyes of Steel", which is a bit misleading really because the colour is more purple than grey, I'd describe it as a sparkly lilac. I have to say I really like the spotty bottle lid too, really quirky.

This little beauty cost £6.00 and I will definitely repurchase this when it runs out! To view the complete range of Topshop nail varnishes click here.

Have you tried Topshop nail varnish? Are there any colours you'd recommend trying?

Beauty Bird xx

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Eye Love... MUA Cosmetics Undressed Palette

All my other eyeshadows are redundant right now, because I am in love with this palette! It has caused a lot of hype, but rightly so! For a mere £4.00 you get 12 gorgeous eye colours, 3 matte shades and 9 shimmery shades. The mix of taupe, bronze, gold and brown shades, with a blue and black shade thrown in for good measure, is very similar to the Urban Decay Naked Palette (check it out for comparison here). You also get a double ended eyeshadow brush.

Top Row = Shade 1-6 / Botton Row = Shade 7-12

The three matte shades are Shade 1, 3 and 5 on the top row. 

Now for the swatches! Unfortunately I couldn't manage to just take a picture of each row, so I've cut the palette in half to take the pictures, hope this isn't too confusing!

Shades 1-3 and 7-9
Left to right: Shade 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9

As you can see the two matte shades (1 and 3) aren't very pigmented. I've been using Shade 1 on my brow bone and Shade 3 as a base colour.

Shades 4-6 and 10-12

Shades 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12

With primer I get a good six hours wear out of these. Below I am wearing Shade 2 all over then with Shade 9 blended into the outer third of my eyelid.

The Verdict

Buy it! I really love this palette for so many reasons; the price, the range of shades, the fact that the colours are so wearable and so many of them go so well together, the pigmentation of the shimmery shades... It's going to be a makeup staple for me! Are there any negatives? The case isn't the best quality but pah! It's what inside that counts. I also prefer my E.L.F eyeshadow brush, which has bristles rather than pads like the one provided, but that's my personal preference.

Do you have any MUA Cosmetics palettes? Which is your favourite right now?

Beauty Bird xx

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Beauty Bargain: E.L.F Eyelid Primer

E.L.F Cosmetics is quickly becoming one of my favourite budget beauty brands (alongside MUA Cosmetics) for reasons like this Eyelid Primer. For £1.50 - yes really - you get a really good quality product that actually works. Ok the packaging is pretty boring, but for the price I don't really expect a lot more. I'm a sucker for cute and quirky packaging like Benefit and Soap and Glory, but it's a bonus really and wouldn't be the only reason I'd buy the product. 

The blurb:
"Preps your eyelid for smoother, longer-lasting and crease-proof eyeshadow. The ultra sheer nude color works to increase eye colour longevity. The lightweight liquid formula quickly absorbs into the skin for comfortable wear."

The E.L.F Eyelid Primer has one of those stick applicators, with the shaped, spongey end for direct application to your eyelids. This is probably my only negative, as it means you don't get the same amount of product on the stick each time you use it.  

This primer is in the shade Sheer. It's a nude colour that blends into my skin perfectly. The formula is a thin to medium consistency, but spreads and blends out well, meaning you don't need to use a lot to cover your whole eyelid. It dries quickly, meaning you don't have to wait very long before you can apply your eyeshadow.

I was really impressed with how it improved the staying power of my eyeshadow. It at least doubled the wear of my new No7 eyeshadow from three hours to six/seven hours before the dreaded creasing and fading appeared.

The Verdict
A little beauty bargain, E.L.F Eyelid Primer will remain a permanent feature in my makeup bag unless something else tempts me away! It worked really well for me, so I won't be splashing out on Urban Decay Primer Potion for now!

To view the product on the E.L.F website, click here.

Are you a fan of E.L.F Cosmetics? What's your favourite product from their range?

Beauty Bird xx

Monday, 9 July 2012

MUA Cosmetics Mini Haul

I couldn't resist the Undressed Palette any longer. It kept popping up on blog reviews and favourites posts, saying "buy me, buy me!". Well ok then, if you say so!

When I went to buy it online they had an offer of spending £8.00 and getting a free Going for Gold Palette - although I wouldn't have bought it otherwise, it seemed stupid to not take advantage of the offer and spend another £4.00 to get it for free! (I think this offer has now ended unfortunately.)

So here's what I picked up altogether.

- False Eyelashes "Vixen" - £2.00. I've been wanting to try these since MUA bought out their eyelash range exclusively online. I really haven't mastered false eyelashes yet, so I need the practice! 

- Undressed Palette - £4.00. Hello to 12 shades of gorgeousness. Can't wait to try this!

- Going for Gold Palette - FREE but normally £4.00. MUA designed this in honour of the upcoming Olympic Games, which contains ten large eyeshadows. I'm not very keen on the gold shades, but like the look of the silvers and bronzes.

- Nail Varnish in Shade 13 - £1.00. This is a lot... greener than I thought it would be! It looked more blue-green on the website, but I haven't got any green nail varnish so it'll be something different, plus it's actually a really pretty shade of green.

- Love Heart Lip Balm "Sweet Kiss" - £2.00. An absolutely ma-hoo-sive pot of a peachy pink lip balm. Yes, I've got another lip balm. I just can't seem to resist lip products right now!

Are you lusting after any MUA Cosmetics products right now? Have you tried any of the ones I've hauled above?

Beauty Bird xx

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Review: No7 Stay Perfect Eyeshadow in Wheatsheaf

I wondered into Boots a few weeks ago to pick up some Father's Day bits and realised that I had a £5.00 No7 voucher that was close to expiring. Even if you don't normally buy No7 cosmetics or skincare, it always seems stupid not to use the voucher doesn't it? So I came away with their Stay Perfect Eyeshadow in Wheatsheaf for a bargain £3.00 instead of the normal £8.00. It came on my radar a few months ago after Makeup Monster posted about it on her blog as a dupe for MAC Naked Lunch. 

What you get is sleek, black packaging; pretty un-exciting and feels a bit cheap. But a book's not all about the cover right? Inside you get a decent sized pan eyeshadow with a small curved brush. I'm not a fan of the brush personally, I find it too fiddly as there's not much to hold onto! I've been applying with my E.L.F Eyeshadow Brush instead.

The colour is natural yet pretty, a shimmering taupe/beige. It's not the most pigmented when applied, but if you're looking for a subtle shadow for daytime or work then it's ideal. The actual formula is really smooth and silky.

Do use a primer with this - I only got about three hours wear of this without a primer before the shadow began to crease and fade. However with my E.L.F Eyelid Primer I got a good six to seven hours wear.

The Verdict

It doesn't make you go wow, but it's a lovely eyeshadow that's great for the au naturel look. However I wouldn't buy it full price - I think £8.00 is pretty expensive for what you get and the longevity of the product. But if you have a £5.00 voucher I'd recommend trying it - I think I'd only re-purchase with a voucher. 

To view the complete range of No7 Stay Perfect eyeshadows click here.

Have you tried any of No7's eyeshadows? What have you purchased with a No7 voucher recently?

Beauty Bird xx

Thursday, 5 July 2012

July's Magazine Freebies - Will You Be Buying?

So the next lot of monthly magazines are now on sale (August editions) and there are LOADS of freebies. I have to say, none of them have got me quite as excited as last month's Benefit and Ciate Paint Pot freebies, but there's still a few good 'uns.

I've been very restrained and only picked up two magazines when I popped into Tesco earlier - Red and Glamour.

With Glamour I picked up a Balance Me Rose Otto Intensive Lip Salve (10ml) worth £12.00 - I seem to be obsessed with lip balms at the moment, so it's another to add to my collection!

There's also a Balancing Face Moisturiser (20ml), Wonder Eye Cream (7ml) and Pure Skin Face Wash (50ml) from the range to collect.

With Red you get a little skincare pack of Ren Clean Skincare goodies worth £16.00. I've never tried this range before, but heard quite a few beauty bloggers talk about the brand, which seems to be highly rated. In the pack you get a Vetiver v7 Hand and Body Cream (15ml), Active 7 Radiant Eye Gel (5ml) and a Hydra-Calm Global Protection Day Cream (15ml). Looking forward to trying these out, they look and sound very luxurious!

Here's a little summary of what else is on offer:

1. Marie Claire - a choice of three Avon mascaras - Super Extend Extreme Mascara, Super Shock Max Mascara and Super Curlacious Mascara, worth £10.00 each.

2. Cosmopolitan - a choice of three Missguided nail varnishes worth £5.00 each. Choose from a bright pink, yellow or orange.

3. Elle - a St Tropez Gradual Tan Everyday Body Moisturiser (75ml) in either Light to Medium or Medium to Dark.  

4. Harper's Bazaar - a Neom Hand Cream (50ml) in two different scents - Moroccan Blush Rose or Violet, Chamomile and Cedarwood, worth £15.00.

5. Instyle - you don't get an actual product free with this, but there are some offers inside. I had a sneaky peek as I wanted to find out how to get the free Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill mascara - you basically have to rip out a specific page of the mag and take it to a Giorgio Armani counter. I really want to try this mascara, so I'll have to google and see whether there's a counter near me, then pick up the mag if there is. You can do the same with a Shiseido Gentle Cleansing Foam. They also had a 10% online Benefit code - I deliberately made a note of this for you guys - use AUGUSTSTYLE at the checkout!!

PHEW! That's the only ones I've spotted, but there's quite a choice!

Will you be buying any of these magazines this month?

Beauty Bird xx


Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Vitamin and Mineral Supplements = Clearer Skin?

I've been looking into vitamin and mineral supplements recently, wondering if taking a supplement would give my skin a push closer into clear skin territory. I like to think that I eat fairly healthily, but unless you're a qualified nutritionist I don't think you really know if you are giving your body enough of what it needs in terms of vitamins and minerals. I would never rely on supplements, but I think they're a good backup.

After a bit of online research, I found that the mineral zinc (amongst others) is meant to be good for spot and acne prone skin. Different websites say different things - apparently it helps repair skin and heal acne scars, has anti-inflammatory properties and helps control oil production. 

So off I went to Tesco and picked up this - Vitamin C & Zinc supplement. This pot has 90 tablets and it advises to take one tablet a day, so will last about 3 months. It cost £3.75.

I went for the supplement containing Vitamin C as well, as opposed to just the Zinc on its own, as the description was more related to healthy skin and just sounded better I guess!

"Helps maintain healthy bones, teeth, gums, skin and immune system. Functions as an antioxidant."

The tablets are quite small, which is great as I really hate trying to swallow large tablets.

I'm not expecting a miracle from taking these supplements, it's more of an experiment really and there's no harm in trying! So in 3 months time we'll see if there's been any noticeable change!

I also looked at Flaxseed Oil capsules after reading this great post by Hannah at Palindrome Poppet, as they are meant to help with acne, plus the condition of your nails, immune system and general energy. However for 60 capsules from Holland and Barrett you're looking at £6.00-£7.00 approx, which is a bit more expensive, so I'm going to hold off for now and try them if I don't see any benefits from the Zinc + Vitamin C.

I'd be really interested to hear if you take any vitamin or mineral supplements and why? Do you feel like they make a difference?

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 1 July 2012

Budget Foundation Brushes - H&M vs. E.L.F

I'm a bit of a foundation novice, only buying my first foundation a month ago, so for my first foundation brush I thought I'd go budget. I didn't want to spend a lot of money and then find I preferred just using my fingers to apply! I ended up picking up two brushes - the first is from H&M and the second from E.L.F. Cosmetics. 

Top: E.L.F / Bottom: H&M


H&M isn't the obvious place to go to when looking for makeup brushes. I picked it up on a bit of a whim while buying a new makeup bag, spotting that for only £2.99 it was double ended and therefore had a blusher brush to boot.

Unfortunately I was disappointed with this brush overall. Although on first impressions I really liked the foundation brush - the large brush means foundation is quick and easy to blend and the bristles felt quite soft. However it doesn't work so well when it comes to applying in smaller spaces like around your nose - I actually found the ends of the brush to feel a little spiky and uncomfortable! But it does give a nice finish.

Now for the blusher brush. I didn't particularly intend to use this as I already have a fan brush for blusher, but I thought I'd give it a go. It's HORRIBLE. The bristles are really coarse and wiry, not at all smooth or soft! It felt like I was rubbing a beard on my cheeks. Quite a few bristles fell out on first use as well.

E.L.F. Cosmetics 

This small, slimline foundation brush cost a mere £1.50. I think it looks a lot nicer than the H&M brush, the silver writing is a nice touch and makes it look more expensive. 

I like this brush very much. The smaller brush head is better for applying in those smaller spaces, though I suppose because it's smaller it does take a tiny bit of extra effort than the H&M brush. Nothing worth quibbling over though. The bristles are soft and the end result is an even, natural, flawless finish. 

The Verdict

My recommendation of the two is the E.L.F Cosmetics foundation brush. Ok you don't get a blusher brush on the other end, but the H&M one might as well not be there anyway for what it's worth! For half the price buy the one ended brush from E.L.F - the non spiky feeling gives it the edge over H&M!

Overall I am definitely now a foundation brush convert. Beauty bloggers rave about Real Techniques brushes and I would like to try theirs next! 

What are your thoughts on foundation brushes? What brand do you use?

Beauty Bird xx

© Ramblings of a Beauty Bird. All rights reserved.
Blogger Templates by pipdig