Monday, 28 October 2013

Everyday Makeup. Eyes.

As Winter is fast approaching mornings are getting a lot colder and I want to stay cosy and warm as long as possible so I decided I needed to find a basic make up look that's quick, yet polished. I'm not one to wake up, pop on some moisturiser and mascara and head out the door, oh no. I enjoy applying make up and accentuating certain features so I'll always apply a medium coverage foundation, a little concealer and powder, followed by a light application of blush, then create a natural eye look and pop on a balm or lipstick. For work anyway.
I've managed to cut my whole face routine down to about 15/20 minutes which is a massive achievement for me. My latest eye routine creates a really lovely wide eyed, natural look so I thought I'd share that with you today.
I first lay down a base which is usually either Mac's Soft Ocre Paint Pot or the Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Shadow in Bone. These both neutralise any redness on my lids and leave me with a blank canvas. To ensure this stays in place I dust a pale ivory shade over the lid, usually it's Blanc Type from Mac or I'll use my Soap & Glory quad in What's Nude. I then quickly blend a light brown/taupe shade in to the crease for a little definition and that's my eyeshadow finished. I then run a liquid liner, usually from Collection along the outer two thirds of my eye, I don't bring it in to the inner corner or flick it out. This adds fullness to the lashes and gives a bit of definition without looking like you've tried too hard. I always apply lashings of my mascara and my current favourite is Rimmel's Lash Accelerator Endless and lightly fill in my eyebrows with Soap & Glory's Archery pencil. For a final touch I run a nude pencil along my waterline, the NYX Wonder Pencil and Rimmels version are both good and then also from Rimmel I use their Scandal Eyes jumbo pencil in Bulletproof Beige to the inner corner/tear duct area. This shade is a really lovely champagne with shimmer that accentuates your eye shape and makes your eyes look bigger.
I do plan on posting a photo wearing this look to show the finished look but hopefully you get the general idea and I even attempted a face chart to explain further. Today is the first day of my week off work so it felt criminal to even get dressed, let alone apply make up. Onesies and Netflix is the way forward.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Zoeva Brushes.

I'm a sucker for anything beauty related and my most recent obsession is make up brushes. A quality brush can change how your eyeshadow is blended, offer an airbrushed finish to your foundation and precisely place products to get your desired effect. I'd recently heard of a brand, new to me, called Zoeva, a German based brush and cosmetic line that offer quality products for an affordable price. You wont be able to find their products in your local stores but their website offers international shipping and some of their line is available on LoveMakeUp. This is where I decided to get a few brushes from as I'd used LoveMakeUp in the past and knew their delivery was quick and items come well packaged. I initally placed an order for just four brushes to see what the quality was like and I was so impressed I placed another order a few days later.
These brushes are incredibly soft, well made and I haven't had any problems with shedding hairs or bleeding dye when they've been washed. I feel like the brushes I picked were ideal for me as I had specific reasons as to why I 'needed' each brush. The powder brush I've been using for powder, obviously and an all over bronzer brush. The face definer is a beauty for getting a precise but blended contour with powder products while the face shape is the perfect size for cream bronzers for a Kim K sculpting effect. The concealer buffer works well for buffing in concealer, as the name would suggest but also for laying down cream eyeshadows. The smoky shader works amazingly for placing eyeshadow and laying down base colours, or precise placement. The eye blender is brilliant for blending stubborn shadows or for underneath the eyes if you're going smokey. Finally, the soft definer that's brilliant for general blending and working a transition colour along the crease.
All of the brushes I ordered are amazing quality and well priced, considering I'd debated purchasing their high end Sigma and Mac dupes which are far more expensive. They're dense and hold their shape well, look sleek and when combined with my Real Techniques brushes offer me the perfect selection of brushes to cover every need. I'll definitely be browsing their official website as it has more variety, although shipping will set you back £7.50.
Brush Update: I've been using these for four months now and am still as in love as when I first got my hands on them. I've had no issues at all with shedding, they hold their shape after washing and perform brilliantly. I am SO impressed with the quality that I would recommend these over Mac any day of the week. They're not over priced, yet offer the luxury of a high end product. OBSESSED.
If you fancy having a browse for yourself:
Zoeva Official Website

From LE to RI:
Smoky Shader - £5
 Eye Blender - £5
 Soft Definer - £5
Concealer Buffer - £6.50
 Face Shape - £7.50
 Face Definer - £15
Powder - £9

Friday, 25 October 2013

Mini Primark Haul.

If you follow me on Twitter you might of seen that I recently went on an impromptu trip to London for the day. I'd originally planned to visit a nearby town which has a small Primark after one of the girls at work found some berry coloured ankle boots that I convinced myself I needed. My car's been playing up recently which meant we'd be taking the train anyway so whilst arranging times and ticket costs my boyfriend made the mistake of suggesting we go to London instead. Before I'd even given him an answer I was already making mental notes of all the shops I wanted to have a look in. Selfridges, Space NK, Mac Pro were a few but I also still wanted to visit a Primark and went to the huge store on Oxford Street. I've never seen so many people crammed in to one shop before, claustrophobic people beware.
I'd of loved to have a proper rummage through all the accessories, shoes and clothes, throws and random bits and bobs but I could barely squeeze myself down the isles so hastily picked up a few items as we made our way around the shop and joined the ever growing queue. I managed to get a few bargains whilst there, including a new cosy coat for Winter, £18, a lovely little bag, £8, a statement necklace, £4 and some super comfy imitation uggs, £5. I know some people hate faux uggs but I wish I'd brought two or three pairs, they're so warm and comfy and when they get misshapen I'll just chuck them in the bin! I never did find the berry ankle boots!
I also managed to pick up a pink gym bottle for £2 and a cute cupcake gift bag for £1 and socks, of course. Who doesn't stock up on socks in Primark?!

You may of seen some of my beauty purchases on my Instagram, if not look me up - lisamichellexx and if you don't use Instagram, don't fear as I'll be posting my London Beauty haul soon!

Have you picked up any bargains recently? And have you ever visited the manic Oxford Street store?

Monday, 21 October 2013

Skincare Faves.

If you've been a follower of my blog for a while now you'll of realised that skincare products aren't mentioned frequently. This is purely because I'm a bit perplexed by all the different products available and what you really NEED in your routine, rather than what brands what you to believe you need. I have oily/combination skin so I'd say the only issues I have are trying to mattify, without drying and avoiding blackheads, which is a common issue for those with oily skin. My skin isn't sensitive skin and I don't often suffer from breakouts.
For many years I just used the Simple face wipes to remove my make up and I still do every now and then but I try to have some kind of routine as I know make up wipes are frowned upon for containing alcohol and stripping the skin of its oils. My job means I work until 10:30/11 pm most nights so I need something quick and easy and this is where the Loreal Skin Perfection Michellar Solution comes in. A few squirts of this on a cotton pad removes all my make up without irritating my eyes and I usually do this twice to make sure all my make up is removed. I know some people use multiple cleansers and perhaps I should but this does the job for me! I then pop on some of the *HealGel Eye Serum which helps to de-puff, brighten and moisturise the eye area and has an instant cooling feeling.
Once the eye serum has sunk in to the skin, which is pretty instantly, I've been using a sample of the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair which I'm in love with. I'm secretly hoping someone will buy me a full size bottle for Christmas as it leaves your skin plump and nourished without feeling at all greasy or heavy!
And that's all I do in the evening, it's quick and simple - just as I like it.
In the morning I just splash my face with cold water and use the No.7 Beautiful Skin Day Cream for normal/oily skin which is a light, refreshing moisturiser that works well underneath make up.
I also like to use a face mask every now and then and I chop and change depending on what my skin is like. If my skin's a bit greasy and I have a few blemishes I use the Origins Clear Improvement mask which helps clear pores and mattify, followed by the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo. Dehydrated? I use the Hydraluron before the Estee Lauder serum or the Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight mask. This deeply moisturises the skin and leaves it plump and smelling delicious in the morning. I'm also a huge fan of exfoliating and my all time favourite product is the Dermalogicia Daily Microfoliant (also on my Christmas wishlist), although I'm trying out a Mario Badescu version at the moment. I also have a few Ren products to trial out which I purchased recently but haven't got around to trying so perhaps I'll have a few new additions to my skincare routine in the near future!
That is all the skin care products I have to mention at the moment. Recommendations for oily/combo skin are welcomed, feel free to rave in the comments about your favourite products.

Monday, 7 October 2013

NYX Haul.

Having eyed up products from NYX for the longest time I decided to finally place an order on their website. Like most of my online purchases, the spending spree was spurred on by a photo that I came across on Instagram, this time of their 'Butt Naked' palette. This contains 15 eyeshadows, four blush shades, a contour and two highlighters. I'd not tried any of NYX's powder blushers or eyeshadows before and at £27 I knew it was a slightly risky purchase but I went ahead anyway. I do wish I'd gone for the Wicked Dreams palette instead which comes in at a bargain price of £15 for 24 shadows but that is a slap on the wrist for me for making spur of the moment purchases. Not to say it isn't worth the money as I've yet to try it out properly, I just feel at £27 it's a bit expensive for NYX, am I wrong?
Having already put one potentially overpriced item in my basket I decided there was no point stopping there and proceeded to do what I like to call 'speed swatching' where I speedily search on my IPhone for swatches of colours, etc. I'm turning in to a beauty obsessed monster that justifies every purchase with 'but I'm going to review it on my blog' when 75% of the time, I don't. Shameful.
In a quick run through I treated myself to a Butter Gloss in the shade 'Eclair' after hearing rave reviews, a Wonder Pencil in 'Light' intended for the waterline, two lip liners in the shades 'Pale Pink' and 'Plum', both beautiful colours, two Jumbo pencils in 'Milk' and 'Iced Mocha', which is gorgeous, a loose pearl shadow in 'Nude', powder blushers in 'Peach', which isn't really very peachy at all and 'Taupe' which I'd heard is a coveted product for subtle contouring. My final purchases were a matte bronzer in 'Deep', I know - hardcore bronzing right there, a double pencil sharper, always an essential and their full coverage concealer in 'Beige'.
I could of happily added more to my basket but I think I'd already racked up a £80 virtual shopping basket at this point and I really couldn't justify spending anymore. Not on one brand at least, haha. I intend to have a massive swatchfest either tomorrow or next week so if you're interested in seeing what the colours/shades look like.

What are your must have products from NYX? Are there any products you've been lusting after? Do you find that Instagram leaves you lusting after cosmetics?!