Wednesday, 28 November 2012

The Christmas TAG

Thank you very much to A Day in the Life of a Scottish Lass for tagging me to do this and to Makeup-Pixi3 for starting the tag and the Christmassy picture below! I thought doing this tag was a great way to up the Christmas spirit, especially I see to be having a nightmare with deliveries of my online Christmas shopping at the moment!

Q.   What’s your favourite thing about Christmas?
I love having a week off work to chill out and catch up with friends and family. My stomach loves the Christmas dinners (my boyfriend and I's parents are both separated so we have a few to eat!) and mince pies! I also try to go to a Christmas market when I can, hopefully I'll be going to the one in Bath in a few weekends' time. I love the lights, the decorations, the cup of mulled wine as you walk round and the atmosphere :-)

Q.   What’s your favourite makeup look for the festive season?
I like adding a bit of glitter to my look, but less is definitely more! I usually buy a glittery liquid eyeliner every winter, I had a subtle grey one last year. I also add some glitter to my nails (although I love glittery nails most of the time!). I wish I was more confident and could take on a bolder lip, maybe I'll give it a try though wouldn't know where to start colour wise!

Q.   Real tree or fake tree?
My boyfriend and I have had real trees for the past few years - I love the look and smell of them (though not finding pine needles all over the house!). This year is out first Christmas with our new addition, our puppy Daisy, so we're thinking it will be easier to go for a fake one this year.

Q.   Giving presents or receiving presents?
Of course it has to be giving! It's an amazing feeling to watch someone's reaction to a present you've bought them and that they love. I'm so grateful for every present I receive, but I definitely don't give just to receive.

Q.   Do you open your presents Christmas morning or evening?
Generally throughout the day! In the morning my boyfriend and I will open each other's presents, then it will depend on where we're going the rest of the day. This year we're spending Christmas with my family, so will go down to my Dad's for lunch and then to my Mum's for the evening.

Q.   Handmade Christmas cards or bought?
I really wish I had the time to do handmade cards as I think they look sooooo nice and can be really personal. I generally buy them with some kind of cute or quirky design - I'm sure you won't be surprised that the ones I've bought this year have bird silhouettes on them!!

Q.   What’s your favourite Christmas film?
I do love a romantic, girly slice of Love Actually or The Holiday!

Q.   What’s your favourite Christmas food?
Oooh that's hard! I do love mince pies, my boyfriend's Mum does homemade ones and gives us a batch every year, they're DELICIOUS! So delicious I had to express it in capital letters haha. I also love cranberry sauce with turkey. Drink wise, I'm loving the Starbucks Praline Mocha and I can't wait to have my first mulled wine of the winter!

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed this tag and please send me your link if you do this post!

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 25 November 2012

My First Lush Bath Bomb: Cinders

I haven't used a bath bomb for years and years! But after seeing quite a few posts on Lush bath bombs recently, I thought these definitely look a lot more exciting than the ones I used to use!

I decided to pick up Cinders Bath Bomb as it's described as perfect for Christmas time and is meant to evoke thoughts of sitting by an open fire with a glass of warm punch! For £2.25 you get a pretty decent sized bath bomb that contains almond essential oil, sweet orange oil, cinnamon leaf oil and popping candy. 

Cinders smells absolutely gorgeous and I could smell it on my skin for ages after getting out of the bath. It fizzes and whizzes round the bath quickly, not taking more than a few minutes before it disappears, leaving a light orange trail. The effect isn't quite as intense in my bath as the picture on the Lush website though (click here to see what I mean!). My boyfriend thought it looked like a Berocca bath!! I liked the popping candy too, very Christmassy.

Overall I really liked this, it definitely made my bath more interesting and somehow does have a more relaxing effect.

Do you like Lush bath bombs? Which one do you recommend I try next?

Beauty Bird xx


Thursday, 22 November 2012

Top 5 Autumn/Winter Nail Varnishes

Left to right:
MUA Cosmetics Plum Noir / Maybelline Forever Strong in Midnight Red / George Quick Dry in Boom / Rimmel 60 Seconds in Grey Matter / Essie Bangle Jangle

I do miss some of my more summery nail varnishes, but winter doesn't have to be drab with gorgeous colours like these! It's so hard to choose my favourite, but I am a little obsessed with the colour burgundy at the moment, so I'd have to go with the Maybelline Forever Strong in Midnight Red. Some of these look great with glittery top coats too, for example the Rimmel 60 Seconds in Grey Matter and Rimmel I Love Lasting Finish in Disco Ball are perfect together. 

Two coats of each varnish have been applied to the nail wheel, apart from the MUA Cosmetics one, which I thought needed three as it was a little patchy in places still after two. I love the MUA Cosmetics nail varnishes as they're so cheap (only £1.00!) and they have some beautiful colours, but the last few I've bought had some splayed brush bristles. A little disappointing! I suppose I can't moan too much for the price though!

What are your favourite nail varnishes for Autumn/Winter?

Beauty Bird xx

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

My Favourite Makeup Products for Tired Eyes

This post was inspired by the lovely Beth over at Beth & The Beauty Blog, who blogged about her staple products for bright eyes. Unfortunately for me I always seem to look tired, even if I sleep really well. I think part of this is genetics (my Mum and sisters are the same) and that I'm so pale, dark circles stand out a lot more. This means I have a selection of makeup products that I'll always use to try and brighten my eyes and just generally look more awake.

After applying eye cream (I currently Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair for Eyes), I apply a small blob of Benefit That Gal around each eye. This is a pink coloured brightening primer for your face, but I find it just gives my eyes a little lift and takes the edge off the darkness.

When I apply my foundation, which at the moment is the wonderful Vichy Dermablend Corrective Foundation (full review here), I also blend it in around my eyes. This foundation is marketed at covering dark circles as well as your face and it does a great job of doing so. Where necessary I apply Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Concealer over the top (full review here). This is such a great product for the price of £4.19, I recommend you run out and buy one if you haven't yet tried it!

When it comes to the rest of my eye makeup I like to keep it simple. I apply No7 Stay Perfect Eyeshadow in Wheatsheaf across the lids for a hint of taupe shimmer and Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Eyeliner in Nude across the waterline to hide any redness (full reviews here and here). I then use my beloved Shu Uemura eyelash curlers and finish with Benefit They're Real mascara (full review here) for a wide eyed look. Shu Uemura are hands down the best eyelash curlers ever - I just wish they did refill pads for them!

What are your favourite makeup products for tired eyes?

Beauty Bird xx

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Not So Happy Feet

I am obsessed with sticking to my skincare routine, generously applying lip balm and hand cream, filing and painting my nails... yet the one thing I neglect is my feet! (Don't worry you won't see any pictures!) In the summer I'm guilty of trudging them around in flip flops and applying nail varnish without taking it off for weeks (or more) because it doesn't chip. Then as soon as it gets cold I just stick them in toasty socks or slippers and forget about them. 

However... I've been doing a class in my local gym where you take your socks off during the class (it's a mixture of pilates, yoga and tai chi). One day I was sat on my mat waiting for the class to start and took a good look at my feet... ewwww! Sections of dry skin around the sides of my feet and unhealthy looking nails, embarrassing! So I'm on a mission to get my feet in tip top condition and here's what I'm using to help get me there:

First off I've been exfoliating a few times a week with my favourite scrub to date - Soap and Glory The Breakfast Scrub. It smells divine; the maple syrup fragrance reminds me of pancakes! The ingredients include oats, shea butter, sugar, honey and banana to scrub and smooth at the same time. 

Then I've been following with Soap and Glory Heel Genius to soften and moisturise and Burts Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream (full review here) to give some additional hydration to my nails. Once done I pop some socks on and allow it all to really sink in.

This process really is helping and my feet are looking better - I just need to make sure I keep up this routine!

Do you neglect your feet? What products do you use to treat your feet?

Beauty Bird xx

Friday, 16 November 2012

Review: Vichy Dermablend Corrective Foundation in Opal

I bought the Vichy Dermablend Corrective Foundation after seeing it raved about on Never Too Broke for Beauty's blog as being great for spot prone skin. I was using a Cover FX foundation before, which I really loved, but it cost £37.00 and Vichy is only £15.50. So I thought I'd give Vichy a try and go back to Cover FX if I didn't get on with it.

The features of this foundation are impressive - and long!

- 24hr hydration
- Lasts for 16 hours
- High coverage of uneven skin texture, dark circles & diffused redness yet no mask effect
- Bare skin feel
- Paraben free
- Fragrance free
- Hypoallergenic
- Non-comedogenic
- SPF 35
I went for shade 15 Opal, which is the lightest shade in the range. It really isn't the lightest colour and I was a little worried about it suiting my uber pale skin, but it blends really, really well and doesn't look out of place at all. 

I have to say, I LOVE this foundation (Cover FX who?). This absolutely does what it says on the box - it has a medium to thick consistency and the coverage is fantastic on spots and dark circles without feeling heavy or looking obvious on the skin. It glides on effortlessly and is easily buildable. I barely need concealer on the top! It has a matt finish yet seems to give my skin a radiant glow. It doesn't go cakey and without primer still looks amazing after an 8 hour working day! I haven't worn it for 16 hours though and I haven't tried it with a primer as my Maybelline one seems to be clumping up.

Now just to prove how good this is I've taken some before and after pictures of my skin - it really hasn't been good recently so I can't quite believe you're going to see it in all its makeup free, spotty glory!! This is without any concealer or powder on top.

The Verdict
This is my new favourite foundation because it is just perfect for concealing spots without making them any worse, which has been a god send for me during my recent breakout attack! I love how easy it is to apply, blend and build, giving me flawless looking skin. My only negative of this is that the shade range isn't very wide, so there may not be a shade to suit everyone.

What is your current favourite foundation? 

Beauty Bird xx


Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Beauty Wishlist #3 (Santa I've been a good girl...!)

Top row

Real Techniques Starter Set - £21.99 and Blush Brush - £9.99
As well as the Core Collection, I now have these brushes on my wishlist too. The Starter Set is all about eyes and contains a base shadow brush, deluxe crease brush, accent brush, pixel point eyeliner brush and brow brush. 
I currently use a Jane Iredale fan brush for blusher, so I want to see how the Real Techniques blush brush compares. Are there any other RT brushes you'd recommend?

Models Own Wonderland Box Set - £20.00
I love glittery nail varnishes and so this set of 5 nail varnishes plus a top coat is perfect! I think this set is really Christmassy too (especially with names like Jack Frost and Snowflake) and would make a great present for any nail varnish lover!

Bottom row

Antipodes Certified Organic Divine Face Oil 25ml - £18.99
This is described as "the ultimate boost for stressed skin" and my skin certainly is stressed! It's meant to balance skin texture, hydrate and help improve wrinkles and scars. I love the fact that this natural and organic too, so it shouldn't aggravate my spot prone skin.

Topshop Highlighter in Crescent Moon - £10.00
I first saw this on a Gh0stparties video and then swatched and reviewed on Suzy Hearts Beauty. It has a gorgeous pearly finish and gives skin a lovely glow. I've never used a highlighter before and I think this is a not-too-expensive place to start!

Look Beauty Brow Perfect Kit - £11.99
Excuse the pun, but this really does look like the perfect kit for brows! This has 7 brow powders, a fixing brow gel, brow brush, tweezers and stencils - much more than any other brow kit I've seen! It all comes in a compact box with a mirror to boot.

Santa I promise I've been a good girl this year!!

What's on your beauty wishlist? Have you any tried any of the products above?

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 11 November 2012

A NOTD and FOTD: Saturday Night

Last night I went out for my best friend's birthday and I managed to grab a few photos before I went out of my makeup and nails. Our boyfriends are doing Movember so I decided to join in and do some Movember nail art on my nails! I wore a plum dress from Missguided so I thought this pink would go with it pretty well.

MUA Cosmetics Nail Varnish in Amaretto Crush
Models Own Nail Art Pen in Black
Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Anti Chip Top Coat

Benefit That Gal and POREfessional
Vichy Dermablend Corrective Foundation in Opal
Collection (2000) Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair
Jane Iredale PurePressed Powder in Light Beige
Jane Iredale PurePressed Blush in Parfait

ELF Eyelid Primer in Sheer
No7 Stay Perfect Eyeshadow in Wheatsheaf
MUA Undressed Palette Shade 4
Collection (2000) Extreme 24 Hour Felt Tip Liner
Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Eyeliner in Nude (on waterline)
Benefit They're Real Mascara

Rimmel Lasting Finish Matte Lipstick by Kate Moss Shade 101
Figs and Rouge Rambling Rose Lip Salve (applied first)

Sorry for the bad lighting in the last pics - it was dark outside by the time I was done with my makeup. I bought the Rimmel lipstick a few weeks ago and I am in love with it, full review to come soon! I've only recently ventured into the world of lipsticks and this is a good, not too "out there" colour to start with. Otherwise this is a fairly standard night time look for me, I'll just change my eyeshadow depending on what I feel like wearing at the time, but I'll always wear my trusty black liquid eyeliner!

What's the one makeup product you'll always wear on a night out?

Beauty Bird xx


Thursday, 8 November 2012

Winter Wonder: Caudalie Grape Water

I bought this a few months ago but have been making the most use of it since the weather started getting cooler. I work in an office, which has no heating and it isn't very well ventilated, so when we put our fan heater on to get warm it can also get really stuffy. This has been playing havoc with my skin - it's been much oilier than normal, which I think is because it's drying out and then overproducing oil to counteract the dryness. This Caudalie Grape Water has really helped with this problem!

Caudalie Grape Water is a 100% organic spray, containing no parabens or preservatives and is fragrance free. It literally just contains grape water, grape juice and nitrogen! I almost got swept up in the Beauty Elixir hype, until I realised it contained alcohol, which would dry out my skin. The key benefits of the Grape Water is that it soothes, moisturises and de-sensitises. It is suitable for all skin types, especially sensitive skin. 

I spray this on my face at least a couple of times a day at work and have noticed that my skin is definitely less oily, pretty much back its normal self, when I come to use my Kleenex Shine Absorbing Sheets at lunch time. You don't need to rub or pat the spray in, so it's easy to use and it doesn't effect my makeup. It can also be stored in the fridge for a cooling effect, so I should be able to get more use of it in summer too.

I bought the 75ml bottle, which is the perfect handbag size, but it is also available in a 200ml bottle. The RRP for 75ml is £6.80 but there are a number of authorised online stockists that sell it cheaper. I think it's a good price and I will definitely be re-purchasing this!

Do you use any facial sprays? Which is your favourite?

Beauty Bird xx


Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Review: Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Eyeliner in Nude

I'd never been convinced by white eyeliners, so when I was recommended this Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Eyeliner in Nude for brightening tired eyes, I thought it sounded like a more natural looking alternative to try!

The eyeliner itself is soft and creamy in texture and has a good colour pay off without needing to apply a lot, despite it being nude. I've been using it on my waterline, where it glides on effortlessly without catching or tugging. It starts wearing off on me after three or four hours. I've read other blogger reviews that say it lasts all day on them, so I may have particularly watery eyes or something! It looks natural and definitely brightens up my eye area- it's become a part of my daily makeup routine now! 

Below is a picture of my eye without the eyeliner on the left and with it applied on the right. I applied a little more than normal, just so it shows up better.

The Rimmel Scandaleyes Eyeliner costs £3.99 is available in quite a few other colours too; black, bright blue, deep purple, silver, bronze and taupe. I love the look of the taupe one, so I may have to go back and check this one out!

The Verdict
This is a great quality eyeliner and a staple for brightening tired eyes! I will definitely re-purchase. Ok, it doesn't last all day on me, but I can put up with re-applying considering it's so cheap!

Have you tried any of the Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Eyeliners? What are your staple products for tired eyes?

Beauty Bird xx

Sunday, 4 November 2012

NOTD: Stand Out Silver

I bought this gorgeous mini Essie nail varnish in a blog sale recently and I'm in love with the dusky lavender colour! The shade is Bangle Jangle and I think it is a great muted shade for autumn. I decided to mix it up a bit and try it with a silver accent nail using Barry M Instant Nail Effects Foils Silver nail varnish. 

Although I wasn't sure at first whether the silver accent nail worked, I really liked it in the end! It was quite funny as my boyfriend asked me if I'd picked up the wrong colour nail varnish by mistake!!

Do you like accent nails? What nail varnish shades are you loving for autumn?

Beauty Bird xx


Friday, 2 November 2012

Nails Inc FREE With Glamour!

Yesterday the December edition of Glamour came out for sale, complete with a choice of four Nails Inc nail varnishes worth £11.00 each! So being the freebie and nail varnish addict that I am, I trotted off to Tesco before work to check out the colours. 

The nail varnishes available are:

Motcomb Street - Black
St James - Red
Glamour Glitter - Gold Glitter
Elizabeth Street - Pale Pink

I was pretty restrained and only came away with two out of the four colours; the gorgeous Glamour Glitter and Elizabeth Street. Unfortunately I didn't have time to paint my nails but I swatched them on my nail wheel below with two coats each. They also go pretty well together I think!

There are also quite a few samples in the magazine, including Rimmel's new BB Cream, Max Factor's new Face Finity 3 in 1 Foundation and Nivea's new Express Hydration Primer. You can also catch a whiff of Thierry Mugler Angel Eau de Parfum and Ellie Saab Le Parfum Eau de Toilette. 

Have you picked up any of these nail varnishes yet? If not at only £2.00 I'd run out and snap up Glamour while you can! I bet these will go pretty quickly.

Beauty Bird xx


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