Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Bristol Blogger Meetup - You've Got Mail!

Hi lovelies!

This is just a quick reminder about the Bristol Blogger Meetup on 23rd February at Cabot Circus. If you have given either myself or Alessia ( your contact details as you're interested in attending, we sent you an email on Sunday as we need to confirm numbers for the first part of the day. If you have already responded to the email or replied via Twitter don't worry, you can ignore this post!

If you haven't received or had a chance to read the email, we are still planning to meet at 11am for drinks and/or lunch, which gives us all time to chat and get to know each other, before going shopping about 2pm. The meeting place is currently Giraffe, which is on the top floor next to House of Fraser. We are also thinking about meeting back up after shopping for a cocktail, so we can all share anything we've bought and it will just be a really nice way to round up the day and say goodbye.

As so many of you have said you want to come, we think it would be sensible to book a table/tables at Giraffe so we are all guaranteed to fit in the restaurant and get a seat!! Therefore we would really appreciate it if you could let us know if you can or cannot attend this part of the day by 2nd February, so we can organise booking a venue and put together enough goodies for everyone :-) If you just want to join us just for the shopping part of the day then this is absolutely fine too. 

We would really appreciate if you could either let us know by responding to the email, or popping a comment on this post.

We are so excited about this event and meeting everyone!

Sasha & Alessia


p.s. You can also tweet us @beauty__bird and @lil_alessia. There is also the dedicated account @bb_meet. Don't forget to use the #bbmeet hashtag so we can chat with you all in the run up to the event!

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Review: DGJ Organics HairJuice Clarifying Shampoo and Conditioner

I have never tried any clarifying hair products before, nor ones containing organic ingredients, so I was really excited when DGJ Organics sent me their HairJuice Clarifying Shampoo and Conditioner to try.

Clarifying shampoos and conditioners are designed to remove build up from the hair, which is generated from using everyday hair products and hard water. According to the bottle; "Organic mandarin essential oils and rose extracts revitalise and cleanse hair to remove build up and impurities". The HairJuice Clarifying Shampoo and Conditioner are also free from SLS and parabens. I'm not particularly savvy when it comes to these ingredients, but I do know that SLS is a chemical that basically enables a product to lather or foam. Sensibly, it does warn you on the back of the shampoo bottle that it won't lather quite as much as you expect. This clarifying duo is suitable for all hair types.

Now I don't use a massive variety of products on my hair on a day to day basis, so although you can use this daily if you wish, I have been using it as a weekly treat. On the other days I wash my hair I've been using a Pantene shampoo and L'Oreal conditioner.

The first thing I noticed about these products is the gorgeous smell of mandarin, which is very similar to The Body Shop's satsuma scent. The HairJuice Clarifying Shampoo is a clear, thick liquid, which you are meant to massage into your scalp and then leave for about a minute before rinsing. It is harder to lather, which takes getting used to, but it really doesn't bother me at all. The HairJuice Clarifying Conditioner is a white creamy formula, but it's not the thickest, so if you have thick hair you may need to use a little extra!

So my verdict? These products really have converted me and I fully intend to make a clarifying shampoo and conditioner a permanent part of my weekly haircare routine. I also want to start using a SLS free shampoo and conditioner in between. After using these products my hair feels so soft, healthy and just weightless! It is so easy to see and feel the difference. 

The HairJuice Clarifying Shampoo and Conditioner retail at £5.99 each for a 250ml bottle and can be purchased on the DGJ Organics website here. I think this is on the expensive side, but the product does do what it says on the tin so well and will last for ages.

I am also trying out their Berutti Oil at the moment and will do a full review soon!

Do you use clarifying and/or SLS free hair products? What would you recommend?

Beauty Bird xx


Thursday, 24 January 2013

Lush Space Girl Bath Bomb

After only trying my first Lush bath bomb (Cinders) in November last year, Santa was kind enough to bring me the Lush Bunty gift box for Christmas containing two bath bombs and two bubble bars! One of the bath bombs was Space Girl. 

Space Girl looks and smells amazing. I love the fact it's in the shape of a planet, is purple and covered in glitter! When I moved my hands around in the bath it created swirls of purple trailing after them, which I thought was very space-y! It also smells exactly like parma violets. The scent is very strong - but not too overwhelming and it lingered on my skin for ages after getting out of the bath. 

Space Girl contains ingredients like almond oil, grapefruit oil, bergamot oil and popping candy. When I used this I didn't realise it contained popping candy, but I really don't remember hearing any popping!! So either this particular one didn't or the sound of it was very quiet. The oils in this bath bomb definitely do their job, as my was left skin soft and hydrated.

Buying Space Girl will set you back only £2.10, so is one of Lush's cheaper bath bombs. I really liked this one and would definitely buy it myself, just for the smell alone!

Have you tried Space Girl? What's your favourite Lush bath bomb?

Beauty Bird xx


Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Tag! You're It.


Thank you to Mel from Mirror on the Wall for tagging me to be "it"! I found it really interesting to read the answers in her tag and as it seems like a great way to get to know other bloggers a bit more, I thought I would give this a go.

The rules are:
1. Answer the 11 questions set.
2. Set 11 questions for the people you tag.
3. Mention the blog who tagged you.

Here are my answers to Mel's questions!

1. What  are your morning and evening skincare routines?
In the morning I give my skin a very quick cleanse using Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser. I then apply Dermalogica Special Clearing Booster to existing spots and moisturise with Dermalogica Active Moist. I also apply an eye cream, at the moment I'm using a sample of Origins GinZing, which has a brightening effect. At night I double cleanse with the same cleanser- the first time removes surface makeup/dirt and so the second cleanse really gets into your skin and pores. I then apply Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair serum and let this sink in for two or three minutes. I've only been using it a few weeks but I really like it so far - it's hydrating yet seems great at reducing and healing spots! I use the Advanced Night Repair eye cream too. I then finish by moisturising.

2. What's your favourite skincare product and why?
 This is a hard one, as I've started using quite a few different products recently and am still making a judgement on them. Out of the rest, I think I would have to say either the Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser as it's great at cleansing and balancing out my oily skin, or the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye as it's the only eye cream that's really made a noticeable difference to the texture, hydration and darkness under my eyes.

3. Name three products you just couldn't live without.
Makeup wise, I couldn't live without foundation, concealer and mascara. Oh and lip balm. But that's four... Oops!

4. What do you enjoy doing besides blogging?
I love spending time with my family, friends and boyfriend and taking my puppy Daisy for long walks. I tend to drive everywhere, so it's nice to get out in the fresh air and go somewhere quiet. I like a good shopping session too when I can afford it!!

5. What are your ambitions in life?
 Ultimately to be happy. I'd love to find my dream job (I'm still trying to work out what this is!) and not have to worry financially. I'm not very well travelled, but I'd love to get out and see more of the world - Italy, Mexico, New York, Australia... and more! I would like to get married to my boyfriend and maybe children. I'm definitely not feeling broody yet!

6. What do you hope 2013 will bring?
I hope that in 2013 I'll work out what to do career wise! I'm considering studying again part time in something beauty related, so we'll see!

7. What's on your wishlist at the moment?
Where do I start!! The Real Techniques Stippling Brush, Topshop Highlighter in Crescent Moon, Urban Decay Naked Palette, some MAC lippies and eyeshadows (I really want to start one of those pro palettes) and some American products such as Wet n Wild eyeshadows, Maybelline Baby Lips and Covergirl Lash Blast mascara.

8. What is your favourite high-street shop?
Boots is a great all rounder for makeup, skincare, bath and hair products! I could spend a lot of money in Boots! Plus they always have offers on, like 3 for 2 on makeup or No7 vouchers. Clothes wise, I like H&M, Primark and Republic. I think they're all really good value for money and I always find something I like. I just can't afford to spend £45.00 on a jumper from River Island anymore!!

10. What nail polish are you wearing at present?
Nails Inc Bluebell with some snow themed nail art using the Models Own Nail Art Pen in white (see my last post for the NOTD!).

11. What do you do for a living?
I work in an accounts and administration role. It was a role I sort of "fell" into after deciding that university wasn't for me. It's a career/industry with opportunity and a good salary range though.

 The questions I'm setting are:

1. What beauty resolutions have you set yourself for 2013?
2. If you could click your fingers and make one beauty product appear to be yours, what would it be?
3. Tell me one of your favourite makeup tips.
4. If you could raid anyone's makeup bag, famous or not, whose would it be?
5. What's your current favourite skincare brand?
6. Why did you decide to start blogging?
7. Who is your celebrity style crush?
8. If you could eat just one food forever, what would it be?
9. What is your dream job?
10.  What is your favourite film?
11. Tell me one random fact about you - it can be anything!

Here are the lovely ladies I'm tagging!

Evelyn from We Were Raised by Werewolves
Jayne from Miss Jayne Becca
Alessia from Whispers from Angels
Sandy from Absolute Beaut
Jenny from Beauty and the Biryani
Gem from Gem Seren Beauty
Cassidy from Hot Mess in a Dress
Suzy from Suzy Hearts Beauty
Alice from Brightown Girl
Georgina from Makeup Pixi3
Daniella from Beauty in Japan

I know tags aren't for everyone, but I hope you enjoyed reading!

Sasha a.k.a Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 20 January 2013

NOTD: Snow is Falling...

So I have a very snowy themed NOTD for you today, complete with snowy background!

For this NOTD I used one of my favourite nail varnishes, Nails Inc Bluebell and the Models Own Nail Art Pen in white, which I'm so glad I bought as I've got so much use out of it!

We've had about five inches of snow and apparently there's more to come. My initial excitement of the snow, mainly because it was the first time my puppy had seen it (and she loved it!) is beginning to wear off now though. Mainly because I hate driving in the snow and also we have not had any post since Thursday! I can understand why, but it is annoying when you're expecting orders to arrive!! How's the weather where you are?

Please leave me a link if you've done any similar snowy themed NOTDs on your blog - I'd love to see them!

Beauty Bird xx


Thursday, 17 January 2013

Half Price Look Beauty Bargains!

When you find a bargain, it's just something you have to share isn't it?! So I had to write up a quick post to share this one with you all.

Look Beauty is a brand that I haven't tried before but I'd been lusting after their Brow Perfect Kit for ages. Then I saw via Look Beauty's Twitter that everything on their website had been reduced to half price!! I really need to curb my spending at the moment, but I just had to get the Brow Perfect Kit for a bargain £5.99 (usually £11.99!). I can't wait to play with this - it contains 4 eyebrow stencils, 7 brow shades, mini tweezers, a double ended applicator and a fixing gel. Oh and a mirror too! A Loud Lips lipstick in Tangerine Cream also found it's way into my basket for £3.50 (normally £7.00), not sure how that happened...!!

I will do reviews on these products in due course. In the meantime, you can grab yourself some half price Look Beauty bargains too until 22nd January!

Beauty Bird xx


Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Review: MUA Cosmetics Heaven and Earth Palette

I absolutely love my MUA Undressed Palette and since my favourite eyeshadow shades are taupe, brown and bronze, it made complete sense to get the Heaven and Earth Palette too.

I love the fact that for just £4.00 you get a selection of 12 beautiful shades, plus a double ended eyeshadow brush. These are all shimmery but the shimmer isn’t over the top and is actually quite subtle, especially in the deeper, more pigmented shades. The shades don’t have names or numbers, but I’ve numbered them in the same way as the Undressed Palette below (top row equals numbers 1-6 and bottom row equals numbers 7-12).

Shade 1 is great for highlighting the inner corner of the eye or under the brow bone. I think shades 5, 10, 11 and 12 are my favourites, just really rich, gorgeous shades and great for a smokey brown eye. With primer, I get about six hours wear from these eyeshadows.

I’m not getting as much use out of this palette as the Undressed Palette at the moment, but I’m really glad I’ve added it to my collection. For £4.00 it’s an absolute bargain!

What’s your favourite MUA palette?

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 13 January 2013

Review: Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser

The Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser has been my cleanser for a couple of years now. It was in my December empties and couple of people requested a review, so I thought it was about time I justified why I haven’t moved onto another cleanser! 

Dermalogica is an extensive skincare range developed by The International Dermal Institute. All products are guaranteed when professionally recommended. They do not contain artifical fragrances or colours, or chemicals like mineral oil, S.D. Alcohol and lanolin - all of which can worsen common skin problems. I went to a local beauty therapist trained in Dermalogica face mapping (more info here) and was advised this cleanser would be the most suitable for me based on this skin analysis. 

The Dermal Clay Cleanser is recommended for skin with excess oil production. Here’s the blurb from the back of the product:

“A skin-perfecting formula designed to provide deep-cleansing to oily, congested skin. Water-soluble Kaolin and Green Clays combine with purifying extracts of Sambucus, Ivy and Lemon to remove excess oils and refine the skin’s texture. Calming Cucumber and Sage soothe, while refreshing Menthol revitalises even the most tired skin. Contains no artificial fragrance or colour.” 

The formula is quite thick but creamy and should be applied to dampened skin. Being a thick formula means you don't need to use a lot and a 250ml bottle lasts me about four or five months. It just feels lovely on my skin and removes any oil without drying it out. After cleansing my skin feels clean and fresh - I forget I have combination skin after use as it just makes it look, well, NORMAL.

Dermalogica is quite an expensive brand but no more than other high end brands out there. There are quite a few authorised retailers online that sell Dermalogica at discount; for example this 250ml bottle has a RRP of £25.50 but I buy it online for £19.70 from a website called Jersey Beauty Company. (They also offer free delivery and free samples!) 50ml and 500ml sizes are also available.

What’s your favourite cleanser? Have you ever tried Dermalogica?

Beauty Bird xx

Disclaimer: I am not affliated in any way with Jersey Beauty Company.

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Real Techniques Core Collection

I was a very lucky lady at Christmas and received both the Core Collection and the Starter Set for eyes as presents from my family. Today I'm just going to ramble about the Core Collection! Being in love already with the powder and blush brushes, I was very excited about having four new Real Techniques brushes to play with. I don't think I'll use the 2 in 1 case and stand much as a stand, but the case will be great for travelling.

 Left to Right: Contour Brush, Pointed Foundation Brush, Detailer Brush and Buffing Brush

Contour Brush 
"Delicately applies highlighter to contour or create sheer, soft-focus finish"
I haven't had much use out of this brush so far, as I don't tend to contour with either highlighter or bronzer (I don't even own a highlighter - yet!). But I have had a play with it and I think it would be perfect for blending in a creamy highlighter.

Pointed Foundation Brush 
"Use with liquid foundation to build custom coverage"
I personally don't like this for applying foundation as I think the head is too small and it just feels like too much effort! Instead I've been using it to apply concealer around my eyes and nose, which it's the perfect size for. 

 Detailer Brush
"Precision cut to effortlessly conceal problem areas; or, use with lipstick for long-lasting shape and definition"
This brush is great to use when concealing spots or scars as the application is so precise and there's more control over blending. I definitely won't be applying concealer with my fingers anymore! So I can see how it would be great at applying a lipstick, especially darker or bolder colours.

Buffing Brush
"Ideal for full coverage application of powder and mineral foundation"
They always say the best is saved until last and this quote is so true in this instance. I ADORE this brush. Although it is recommended for powder/mineral foundation, I use it for liquid foundation and I know a lot of other bloggers do this too. It just makes application effortless! It buffs foundation into the skin quickly, easily and flawlessly. 

I just need to mention that all these brushes are super soft - the bristles are hand cut from synthetic taklon and are cruelty free. 

In summary, this is the perfect coverage set for creating an easy, flawless base. I could personally live without the contour brush and maybe the pointed foundation brush, but the detailer and buffing brushes have completely changed the way I apply my makeup. Unfortunately you can't buy the buffing brush separately - a shame as it's such a great brush!

You can buy the Real Techniques Core Collection from Boots for £21.99 here.

Do you own the Core Collection? Which is your favourite brush from the set?

Beauty Bird xx

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Review: EOS Lip Balm in Summer Fruit

I mentioned the EOS Lip Balm in Summer Fruit in my recent haul post and have been dying to get my blogger hands on it for ages. EOS is an American brand that specialises in lotions, creams and balms and isn't as readily available in the UK, but I ordered this from the UK based website Naturismo for £5.99 (and free shipping!).

I think the two things that attracted me to this lip balm are firstly, the quirky sphere shape and secondly, that the ingredients are 95% organic and 100% natural. Ingredients in this EOS lip balm include shea butter, vitamin E and jojoba oil to moisturise and soften lips.

The lip balm applies to the lips clear and definitely does a great job at softening and moisturising. I do find that I need to run this round my lips a couple of times though, so it feels like I have enough of the product applied to make a difference! But this is only a minor issue and is probably expected due to how solid the formula is. 

Now onto the scent - gorgeous! The fruitiness is very authentic and not too overpowering. Looking at the ingredients, "summer fruit" consists of blueberry, strawberry and peach extracts. Good enough to eat! 

I definitely recommend trying an EOS lip balm. Other flavours available include Strawberry Sorbet, Sweet Mint, Lemon Drop, Medicated Tangerine and Honeysuckle Honeydew. There is a UK dupe of these called Balmi, which are available from Boots for £4.99. These aren't natural or organic although they do contain SPF 15. I haven't tried any of the Balmis myself and I'm not sure if I will - I'd rather spend £1.00 more for something that is natural and so a lot better for my lips!

Have you tried either the EOS or Balmi lip balms?

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 6 January 2013

Christmas & New Year Beauty Haul!

I know I'm not the only one guilty of this, but as soon as Christmas Day was over I went a little crazy with my spending! I had some Christmas money and really did take advantage (sorry savings!), but I picked up quite a few things I'd resisted buying for awhile and got a few bargains too!

The No7 Illuminated Makeup Mirror from Boots was reduced from £49.99 to £15.99!! It seemed stupid not to pick it up really! I can't wait to try it as it has 360 degree lighting around the mirror, designed to eliminate shadows and glare. Should be great for plucking eyebrows too!

I ordered the Jemma Kidd Makeup Masterclass book from Amazon for £14.40 (RRP £22.50). It's a big old book but it means you get decent sized pictures. So far I've read about things like the makeup formulas that suit different skin types and tailoring your eye makeup to your eye shape. I'll definitely review this when I've finished reading it!

The next one I am so excited about - I finally have my hands on Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair! I picked up the 50ml bottle as it works out better value for money than buying the 30ml. The bigger bottle is an eye-watering £58.00 but I had a £20.00 gift card to take away some of the pain (thank you again to the girlies at CSI Beauty Blog, whose giveaway I won it in!).

The EOS Lip Balm in Summer Fruits has been on my wishlist for months and months and can finally be taken off! I love the quirky sphere shape, plus it smells and feels lovely on the lips. You can get this from the website Naturismo for £5.99.

I also picked up some MUA goodies as my local Superdrug FINALLY got a decently stocked stand. Before it was just lipstick, eyeshadow, some of the nail varnishes and powder/blusher. Now they have everything! So the Heaven and Earth Palette, Eyebrow Pencil in Blonde (I love the fact it has a brush at one end!) and Lip Boom in It's a Situation ended up in my basket for £8.00 in total. The Lip Boom lipstick is a very brave colour for me, but Lisa Eldridge used the darker one (LMK) in one of her videos I watched recently and it looked amazing on her and her pale skin. They didn't have LMK on the stand, but I think I actually prefer this one anyway. Plus one of my beauty resolutions is to try out bolder lip colours. 

Finally, I ordered a few things in the sale from Feel Unique. I originally put more in my basket but was very well behaved and took a few things out at checkout! The bareMinerals Prime Time Foundation Primer was reduced to £15.20 and the Korres Lip Butter in Quince to £4.80.  I also bought a 50ml Salcura Antiac Acne Clearing Spray for £8.49, but I've started using quite a few new skincare products recently so I'm going to wait awhile before adding another to the mix.

I will do full reviews of all these products in the coming months!

What beauty products have you picked up recently, in the sales or otherwise?

Beauty Bird xx


Wednesday, 2 January 2013

NYE Outfit & Makeup

It's a little late but Happy New Year! I hope you all had a great New Year's Eve whatever you got up to. Now I'm back at work it feels like it was weeks ago! This year I had a quieter evening than normal and went for a 3 course meal with my best friend and our other halves, but it still I meant I got to dress up!

Unfortunately due to time I didn't get a close up of my eye makeup and none of the full length shots turned out very well *sigh*. But here's what I wore:

Dress: Glamorous - the bottom half is slightly longer at the back compared to the front and is my favourite thing about this dress. This was such a bargain - £15.00 down from £30.00 in the Republic sale!
Feather Earrings: New Look - another sale bargain at just £1.00. I bought these specifically to go with the dress.
Skull Bracelet: This is an old sale bargain, I think from Dorothy Perkins.

Base: Vichy Dermablend Corrective Foundation, Collection (2000) Lasting Perfection Concealer, The Body Shop Lightening Touch Pen
Blusher: Jane Iredale Pure Pressed Mineral Blusher in Parfait
Eyes: MUA Undressed Palette (shades 5 and 7), Maybelline Gel Eyeliner in Brown, Benefit They're Real Mascara
Lips: Natural Collection Moisture Shine Lipstick in Berry Sorbet, Missguided Lipsplash Lipgloss in Peace

Maybelline Forever Strong in Midnight Red

Here's to a healthy and happy 2013!

Beauty Bird xx

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