31 October 2011

October Favourites! (or whatever it is..)

In regards to the titles - I'm not quite sure what favourites are anymore! :P Are they products you consistently loved throughout the month, or products you've been using a lot that month, or products you've loved at some point in the month?! I decided to go for the latter choice this time :)

Keep your eyes open for a blooper at the end ;)

As for my favourite bloggers/Youtubers this month? I've had a few!

My newbie favourite can be none other than Nic704, who has just started a blog a couple of weeks ago - she's such a sweet girl! Her taste in make-up though - AMAZING, I want everything!

Charlotte's Obsessions is definitely at the top of my list for YouTuber faves - another girl whose collection will never stop enabling me, and comes across so lovely and funny in her recent collection/mini-review videos.

Speaking of which, Lauren at Rose Espirit also has make-up collection (specifically bronzer collection) I will envy for the rest of my life.. jealous doesn't actually cover it.

Ok, not exactly Halloween, but they're orange and black and ADORABLE?! Taken at a cake store in Oxford :)

So yes - hope you had a great October, and happy halloween! :D
Don't forget to link me to your favourites :)


P.S. Has anyone seen this girl? Absolute legend :P
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25 October 2011

Blush Crush: VIVO Sweet Peach

You know that feeling when it just doesn't feel right to wear anything but a certain product, and it's just like that day after day? I love it! These days it's been happening to me with this gorgeous blusher:

(That's my cyclamen Bellinda in the background! :D)

This is the VIVO Blush with Highlighter Duo in Shade 3, Sweet Peach. I received this in my VIVO goody bag when I went to the TOWIB Winter Warmer, and out of all the products I thought I'd like this the least - how wrong was I?!

The left side is a highlighter, that on my skin turns out slightly ashy due to its pink-tones so I haven't really used it yet - although I think it might be nice as an eyeshadow, and better as a highlighter on cooler skintones. I have just read the back and it says that you could swirl the 2 colours together - I may give that a shot soon! The consistency is smooth and not powdery nor too stark!

The right side is the part that I am ADORING. It's just the prettiest peachy pink that goes with absolutely anything and is definitely natural-looking on my NC30-35 skintone. It's what I wanted MAC Melba and NARS Torrid to be! I am such a snob when it comes to make-up and while I do have my reasons (the biggest one being staying power, which admittedly this blusher does lack in comparison to my favourite high-end blushes), sometimes I do overlook the beautiful shades that are available outside department stores.

I also adore the metallic packaging and how huge the product is so you can just dunk your brush in there! :) I just wish it had a mirror (which would counter-act the minus of the staying power a bit, so I could take it out and easily top-up) but it's also nice that you can see the product from the outside.

Left to Right: Illamasqua Rude, MAC Melba, VIVO Sweet Peach, NARS Torrid, ArtDeco Blush 19

The most similar is indeed MAC Melba, but VIVO Sweet Peach is just a tad lighter and a tad pinker. It's also a satin-ey finish which is different to any of the colours swatched above, and adds to the naturalness of the finish. I apply this with my MAC 109 brush as I find it isn't SO pigmented that it is unnatural or that you have to concentrate on how much you are putting on, but it's pigmented enough that it shows up.

Would I buy another shade? Maybe if I find another perfect shade. The packaging, colour and finish is PERFECT, but staying power really is important to me as I am the crappest of crap at retouching make-up. I'll always pick the more expensive product if I know it'll last longer - mainly cuz if you don't have to touch up, you'll use less product anyway! At the end of the day, it may be less money, but it's still hard earned money!

But I probably wouldn't have picked it up myself so I'm really glad to have it - now I just need to find a Tesco to check out their other goodies! :)

Have you tried any VIVO blushers?
What has been your go-to blush recently? :)

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24 October 2011


A week or so ago, I posted about my excitement on getting back in touch with the gel eyeliner. Sadly, my hand had forgotten how to use eyeliner, but I THINK I've finally got it down.. you tell me!

What I'm Wearing..

- Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Foundation in 03
- Bobbi Brown Correcter in Peach
- MAC Studio Finish Concealer in NC35
- Bourjois Compact Powder in Miel Dore 83
- Benefit Bella Bamba

- Clinique Superfine Liner for Brows in Deep Brown 03
- MAC Paint Pot in Soft Ochre
- Clinique Gel Liner in True Black 02
- Rimmel Day2Night Mascara in Black

- Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in Nude Delight 700

Some of you may have noticed the newbies in my collection, and yes I've been very guilty of shopping recently! A lot of it has to do with the weather changing, but also a busier lifestyle calls for more flexible/on-the-go/easy looks and products. You will undoubtedly be hearing more about the lovely things I've picked up and have been loving - but at the moment, eyeliner and eyeshadows have been my favourite things to apply! :)

What's been the focus of your looks recently? :)

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21 October 2011

Haul: Hello & Goodbye, MAC Blushers.

If you remember, about 3 months ago I only had 1 MAC blush (I miss you Style!). Well that's since changed and the collection's expanded to 4. I never really thought a MAC blush was worth the £17, so I was ecstatic when the 3 I'd been thinking about were on blogsales, or sold to me by the lovely Jasmine :)

Left: Melba, Top: Buff, Right: Well Dressed

Left: Melba, Top: Buff, Right: Well Dressed

Melba: I'd swatched this shade in store without looking at the name, and that's always a sign that you love a shade! That being said I never picked it up because I never had the urge to wear a pinky peach, and kinda thought it would be too similar to my NARS Torrid. But when such things come to you via blog sale at a bargain of £8 - you just can't say no can you? I've worn this a few times, and it's a great no brainer blush! But as a blush person, I'm not always up for a no-brainer so this hasn't been used TOO much, but I'm glad to have it :) It's definitely kind of a one-size fit all shade, I think!

Buff: This is also another one I'd wanted for a while, but couldn't choose between this and Cubic which is more pink and I think, lighter. But again, for £8 - how could you physically say no? Surprisingly, when put on my cheek it turns more of a peachy/pink-toned brown which is absolutely gorgeous for everyday and so understated, classy and perfect for a no make-up look. I'd definitely recommend this to warmer and medium to darker skintones - Cubic may be better for lighter/cooler skintones :)

Well Dressed: I know this is one of those, previously "EVERYONE will love it!" blushes that has been developing a reputation of marmite-ism. When I first wore this I was like, "YEP! Everyone's right, it has no pigment." But if you've ever had a problem with the pigmentation of this blush, the trick is to tap it on as opposed to brush it on and you will get a lovely pink flush! I was hoping for something still more pigmented and something that will remain the baby pink on my cheeks as against my warm skintone it has a tendency to look darker and warmer (as do many baby pink blushes!) so I may have to try Katie from Illamasqua some time! If you're considering this - definitely try it in store first! It may not come out the way you hope :)

Top to Bottom: Well Dressed, Buff, Melba.

I think my fascination with MAC blushes is close to over, if not over. While the powder formula is great, they never seem to get the shade "just right" for me - I'm never 100% blown away. It's the same with their cream and mineralized blushes too - although I'd love to try the formula. It may be time to move on to Illamasqua powder blushes for me!

I may be talking out of my bum you know, in a few months I may be all over them ;) But for now, I think NARS blushers will always be my fave!

Do you love MAC blushes? Or is your loyalty with another brand? :)
What's your favourite MAC blush?


P.S. I am now off to see Emma from Oh So Fresh As A Daisy! We've been talking for ages, and she seems like such a laugh so I'm so excited! :) She hasn't posted for a while as she's lacking in the internet department atm, but go check her blog out! Her foundation collection and make-up bag post is to die for, and she has a great post on her insight into high-end vs. drugstore make up <3
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20 October 2011

Mmm I Love Me Some Black Leather!

I don't mean to sound like a creepy old man, I literally have been acquiring many black leather items recently, that are surely to become staples over the winter and some even beyond!

I'm a ridiculous model, I know. But this is my new uni bag that I picked up from Zara for £79.99 over the weekend! It's big enough to fit my books, my laptop and also clothes and make-up for when I am off to the boy's. It's all buffalo leather which I love and can't wait to see it get softer! But I must say, the shoulder strap has not managed to come off when I want to use it as a handbag, and today it spontaneously decided to come off which resulted in me dropping my bag twice.. nevertheless, the bag is lovely and I've been seeing the tan version quite a lot around London - apparently Olivia Palermo has it too?! (I'm pretending I know who she is..)

My year consists of two footwear - flipflops (Havaianas are the flippy floppies of choice) and boots (UGGS!). This year with my attempt to save, I decided to go for something that's still high quality but affordable, and opted for tall black Whooga boots, for £79. Now I was under the impression they were shipping from Australia, but it is both made and sent from China which I was a bit meh about, but the box was lovely and it came in one piece. I have noticed that the sole is foam which I was also a bit meh about, and also the inner fluff was kind of coming off today on my first wear, but maybe cuz it's my first wear? Nevertheless - so warm and comfy :) They're actually the only sheepskin boots I own - the UGGs I own are both knit (and hand-me-downs XD)!

Now this baby was a gift from my lovely boyfriend who picked it up in Chicago and gave it me for our 3rd anniversary :) I'd been going on about Coach for, well, years now and a wallet since the summer so a smart boy puts 2 and 2 together ladies! ;) It's an understated, chic black leather wallet with spaces for my numerous cards and 2 slots for my non-existent bills :P It's absolutely gorgeous, and am in love - with both of them :P

So that's me sorted for a while, £160 is not a happy sum to part with! Either way, these recent purchases and gift are my pride and joy atm so I thought I'd share it with you guys! (Esp cuz this bag has been getting some attention in class as well! :P)

Apologies for the lack of make-up posts recently girls, I am very much still wearing make-up (not evident in the pics, I know) just.. very different ones everyday as I am a busy bee for once in my life! Hopefully I will have some things to rave about soon, as I have had loads of blogsale purchases coming in, and am also currently deciding whether I have found my winter foundation of choice! :)

Any "big" purchases recently for you? :)

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17 October 2011

Unboxing: Glossybox October 2011


Now that I've got that out of the way! :)

Last month Lily from Glossybox emailed me about giving a box a go - and I thought there wasn't much harm in it, although I almost expected to be apathetic and not end up doing a review cuz there's just so much out there about beauty boxes, and I've read up on it a few times.


There's something ridiculously controversial about beauty boxes, and now that I have experienced one in particular I thought I'd give my views on Glossybox specifically (not the products!), and what I thought about this month's box.

Main Points:
* Amazing presentation.

*Eco box option :) (if not send it back, have an option to not get a box!)

* They've got the brands down! Definitely loving the balance between brands we've all heard of and brands we haven't - I think it's good to be favourable to the former, but have bits of the latter.

* Boxes need to choose whether they 100% tailor for individuals, but otherwise go for products that are on trend or everyone will like and use, and would consider paying for (in terms of shade, skin type etc.,)

Am I rushing off to subscribe to Glossybox? Sadly, I'm not. But this is for several reasons: 1) I think they are going to get better, 2) there's just so many to choose from and I haven't put in the thought and analysis into which one I'd pick, cuz I simply couldn't afford all of them, and 3) because I still haven't convinced myself that I have £10-£13 to spend per month on things I'm not sure I'll like and 4) because I don't want a whole bunch of boxes or a bunch of mini samples that I may or may not use piling up in my student accommodation.

A quick thank you to Lily and the Glossybox team for providing the box for me! :)

What do you think about the Glossybox?
Are you subscribed to any other beauty boxes? :)


P.S. I know, 2 posts in a day - madness! Remember to check out my previous post on TOWIB :)
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TOWIB: My First Blogging Event

Ever since I first heard about such things as blogging events, I wanted to go. But living in the middle of nowhere it was often impossible to make it to big events.. also probably would've helped to be invited to something LOL :P So for me, when TOWIB (The Only Way is Blogging) started happening, I was really excited!

Sadly, for the first event I was en-route to London with my boyfriend to pick up my parents from the airport - yeah, not so much a, "You can do it yourself right, I'll see you at the hotel!" kind of thing :P So this Winter Warmer was pencilled in as early as August so I can make sure there will be no family obligations in my way ;P This time it was at a bar in Green Park - lovely :)

Did I enjoy it? I did! Sadly I was an airhead as usual and brought a camera, a camera charger but no SD card so I'd refer you to other posts for photographs of the event :) But the event as a whole was a interesting experience for me, mainly because I got to see George and Anna again, and meet some bloggers I've been reading their blogs for forever like Siobhan and Lauren, and also got introduced to new blogs like Gem's and Suzie's. My main reason for going was to meet people, but the demonstrations by make-up artists were so fun to watch, and it was just really cool to see in real life how a pro does make-up on a model. I wasn't so sure about the setting/layout, or if the other talks were my cuppa tea, but others seemed to enjoy them which is always good! :)

The make-up artists that were there were from FashionistA and VIVO. They both had 3 presentations each - FashionistA had 3 from the runway, and VIVO had 3 that was more street-friendly. It was a good contrast to have! FashionistA did a blue smokey look, a feline look and a blusher look, and VIVO did a vampire, golden and bold lip look. Lots of variety and "Ooo"s and "Ahh"s on my behalf :P

I'd never heard of FashionistA, but really liked the idea of the customizable palettes - SURPRISE! :P So was really excited when we got to choose our own palette to take home and play around with! I'm hoping I'll see them around in store so I can get some more bits to put in :) The one I chose was used for a dark blue smokey eye - a bit scary but something I've wanted to try out for ages! The mirror is absolutely maHUsive (even bigger than my ArtDeco one) so I'm keen on carrying it around with me!

VIVO - how could you not have heard of them? When they first said they'll be sold only in Tesco, I was like, "Pshyeah awesome." Err, do you know how hard it is to find a bloody Tesco that's not metro or express in central London? So I was a VIVO-virgin, and am now so glad I'm not! I tried many of the products they gave us yesterday and I was really impressed, even with the packaging! The goody bag I got contained products that were used for a bold lip, subtle everything-else look, which I haven't got nailed down so I wanted to give it a shot again :) I love the metallic black packaging- it's very chic and SUCH a good change from a boring black plastic that many budget brands seem to resort to. And, the lip products - OHHHH MY. They smell DELICIOUS. I want to eat them.

I think my favourite product out of everything so far has been the VIVO blusher, which I thought was going to be my least favourite. The colour is GORGEOUS, it is a fool proof, peachy pink with a slight iridescence.

So yes, it's Monday again and I had a great weekend. Sunday was spent in Canary Wharf with the boy watching the Three Musketeers (AMAZING) and shopping around, as well as having a delicious and cheap Sunday roast! Today is actually kind of still the weekend for me as I have no classes, but I have a lovely dinner planned at a posh restaurant (did any of you take advantage of the London Restaurant Festival!? :)) for me and the boy's 3 year anniversary :) I cannot wait!

Do you remember your first event?
Have you tried any FashionistA or VIVO cosmetics? :)

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14 October 2011

The Nicky Clarke Experience + Haul :)

I have a love-hate relationship with going to get my haircut - I love it because it's another aspect of pampering yourself, but I hate it because 1) I never know what I want and 2) even if I do, mostly like than not it wont turn out the way I want.

Could it be because I just go to local salons, and never really make the effort to ride on reputation or go to more 'style'-oriented salons? Maybe. So I took a shot, and booked myself an appointment at the Nicky Clarke salon on Mount Street in Mayfair (for those of you with NUS cards gets 40% off which ends up about £39 for a cut and blow dry!).

My expectations were somewhat shaped by a review I read earlier - a snotty, charge-for-everything atmosphere. I was both wrong and right.

Making an appointment raised my hopes, as the guy on the other end was very nice, and I recognised his voice when I spoke to the receptionist when I got there. But there was another bloke at the counter who was a snotty, stuck-up *bleep*. He shook his head, smirking at customers, and was just generally rude.

Now I got there 10min before my appointment, but ended up waiting about 10min after my appointment as well, in which time 2 others had been collected by other stylists. I was offered a coffee or a tea, but had been told earlier that Nicky Clarke charges for drinks, so I refused. Whether it was because my stylist had another client on (which she did, and I did hear the receptionist ring up to tell her) or what - I have no idea but it was starting to take the piss.

Taken from LDS.

However, when Theony, my stylist, eventually did come she was absolutely great! (Beforehand I was sent to the cloakroom, where you can leave your coat and get the fashionable cloak on :P I did notice a tip jar, but wasn't quite sure if I was prepared to or not.)

Anyway, Theony knew what she was talking about, and I could tell because despite my incredibly layered and thinned out hair, she could tell that I originally have very thick hair. I told her I wanted some volume and fat hair and she talked me through what was "wrong" with the style I had now, and how I can change it.

I got my hair washed by a different guy, and he was friendly enough. After shampoo-ing I got asked if I wanted conditioner - I've NEVER been asked that! Anyway, I refused in fear of being charged like an extra tenner (although I'm not sure if they do lol).

During my haircut Theony gave me tips about how to take care of my hair, and accommodated it to what I asked for - low maintenance and low budget. She was an absolute delight!

So after my haircut I went back to the cloakroom to get my cloak off, and to get the hair dusted off me, which to be honest didn't help that much. For a professional salon I must say it was quite poor. I do realise I should've tipped as I'm guessing these girls don't get paid too much, but if I'm honest - the girl put a gown on me, took it off, and brushed away hairs.. maybe if I wasn't a student I would have.

Anyway, when I went to pay, they didn't ask me if I had any drinks so maybe they don't charge anymore - but they also didn't even bother asking for my NUS card, so they were quite relaxed in that sense. Or I just screamed, "STUDENT!" :P

ANYWAY! Here is the result :)

I know, it's so short! But Theony had told me that my hair was much too layered to have the natural thickness, and also that my ends were relatively damaged so she said she would cut about 2 inches off. After she had done that, she also said that it would be better if she could cut a bit more off but that it would be okay if I'd come back in 3 weeks and had it done then - but I can't afford £80 over 3 weeks! So I asked her to do it then and there :P

So hopefully now my hair will become thicker and more voluminous after it grows out :) On the way back, I bought a hair mask from Herbal Essences which I had read in Glamour was good, as well as a round volume brush from TRESemme, to add some life into my roots and ends.

Those weren't the only things I bought then, but the other thing can wait for another time :)

Overall, I'm glad I didn't walk into Nicky Clarke with a naive attitude to the place - I got what I expected, but I also got some good tips that I'd never gotten from a stylist before. I do feel my hair is more like what I want it to be, and I would consider going back early next year for another trim (Theony was never pushy about me coming back to her which I liked) because I genuinely think I got my money's worth.

The most surprising thing I learnt today? Don't apply masks or oil treatments every time you wash your hair! I was my hair once every 2 days, and she said that I should be applying the oil once every 4 days and a hair mask once a week. Why? Because it can actually make your ends TOO soft and therefore become prone to breakage - WHAAAAT? I was surprised, but I might be the only one :P

Have you ever been to these "big" salons?
What's the strangest/most surprising hair tip you've gotten?

If anyone has any recommendations for hair salons in central London (which are affordable :P) I'd love to know! :)


P.S. I'll be at TOWIB tomorrow - will you? I'm so excited to meet everyone! :) See you there!
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13 October 2011

Back to the Liner: Clinique

Until recently, I don't think I wore any form of black eyeliner for atleast the past half a year - literally! Maybe on the odd night out but it was me, my eyeshadows, mascara and a skintone eyeliner. For a girl that started make-up with black eyeliner, that's a pretty sac-relig thing to do, ey?! :P

But hey ho, the old friend is back along with the cold, and I have to say - I'm quite enjoying its company! The defined and glam look (I was going to say sultry but I feel odd saying that about what you're attempting to do..) is definitely a great way to adjust to the season in my opinion :)

However, somewhere between the boyfriend's house and mine, my K-Palette 24hr Real Lasting Eyeliner went astray, and I was "forced" (i.e. I've always wanted to but never had an excuse) to get another eyeliner since my Maybelline one dried out and after an attempt to revive it by mixing it with olive oil, I got disgusted at the idea of olive oil on my face.. Yeah, so anyway..

I bought a new one :D

I picked this up at Selfridges when I was on a little shopping trip with Vivianna last week (who by the way is actually even more hilarious and lovely than she comes across in her videos/posts), with little contemplation to say the least as I'd already been convinced by Tanya Burr that this was the gel eyeliner to go for, as it doesn't dry up as easily as the likes of MAC Fluidline or Bobbi Brown's Gel Eyeliner.

Now I realise that the brush looks a bit crap - it's not that bad actually, but I do want to give the MAC 209 or 266 a shot but it's something that is not so urgent and my wallet and conscience wont allow at the moment. So I'm rather glad it came with this little guy if I'm honest! For £13.50 it's cheaper than the other 2 brands I mentioned before.

It applies a dream, and it's a solid black. My only 'meh' about it is that it's not so black on the waterline and it does slide down when applied there during the day. I also find that it's not 100% smudge proof during the day (which my K-Palette eyeliner was). It's not to say it doesn't last a long time - it was just a step down in standards for me personally.

I'm doing a bit of a round of Clinique recently but I find their range very well priced and the basic products like my Superfine Liner for Brows and this gel eyeliner very good quality as far as I can tell. One thing I'd stay away from? The Anti-Blemish Concealer - dear god that thing was CRAP.

Anyway, my favourite eyeliner work I've seen recently? LLYMLRS. I would like her eyelashes, her hair, her tan and her legs. Ta.

Have you found an increase in the amount of eyeliner you use? :)
Have you tried any Clinique make-up?

You can get this product at Selfridges for £13.50, and if you're from the States, you could check here* for some Macy's discounts :)


*Sponsored link.
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11 October 2011

How To: Sample Haul

We all do it - but it's true that it can feel pretty intimidating, asking for free samples at counters. You may feel like you're being a free-loader, or you might worry the staff may be a bit funny about you asking, or you may feel bad that you're not even buying anything but you want something to try.

But after a while, you get the hang of it and I thought I'd put in my 2 cents about why I go sample hauling, how I do it and how I manage my samples :)

Committing the Act

Right. It's NOT a crime to ask for them, samples are there for a reason, right? How many times have you seen 90% full foundations on blog sales, seen people return products, or heard about people being disappointed in skincare items because they broke them out - many times. Samples are there to prevent you from wasting money and in my eyes, creating unnecessary waste as well.

So we all know it's in our interest to have samples, but believe it or not it's in the interest of companies as well. If you think about it, anyone can buy a product for the first time and it will create some revenue for companies. But if that person doesn't like it, they have reason not only to say how bad a product was, but also that they wasted their money - never a good publicity for brands, considering many purchases result from testimonies from close friends and family!

Much of a brand's revenue lies in repeaters - it's in their interest for you to love a product and repurchase it for the rest of your life. So by giving you samples, they are saving stock for the people who have continued to purchase the brand's goods, or they're introducing you to a new product that you will repurchase in the future :)

In addition, by giving you samples they get a chance to show you how good their customer service can be. I'm not gonna lie - customer service really does impact how I feel about a brand - and I remember these things! The Dior woman at the House of Fraser in Leamington Spa, the LUSH lady in the South Molton Street store, Rosie from Clarins in the House of Fraser on Oxford Street and the Prettier Amy Winehouse from Origins in Peter Jones Sloane Square - I will, if practical, go back to those specific counters 99% of the time!

The Awkward Question

"Can I have a sample please?" sounds so easy in your head, but not so easy when you actually need to say it, especially when you haven't actually bought anything. You start wondering if it'll come across as cheap or cheeky, but it really is as simple as saying those 6 words. As long as you are polite, any interested sales assistant will do their best to help you. You shouldn't forget, they are also consumers and probably have a good few years up their sleeves of sampling products!

Everyone has a reason for wanting samples, and if you feel uncomfortable just straight out asking, just be honest! I always admit that some products are too expensive for me to buy and not like, or that I wouldn't want to waste the product if I don't like it, or that I want to go home and really test out the colour match and consistency with my own brushes/lighting. It's also important to know how it works on my skin over a few days. Honestly, I've never gotten a funny look from saying that, because who in their right mind likes wasting money?

Making the Most of Your Samples

Yes, they were free and yes they are tiny and easily get lost in our vast collection of make-up, but remember that they were given to you for a reason - to try! It may seem like, "Ooo I don't wanna use this yet because the actual thing is expensive!" but it wont seem as expensive to buy the full-sized product if you know you're gonna love it :)

Magazines are another great way to get samples of things you may not necessarily think about getting. The big difference about magazines is that they often include fragrances or even drugstore items that really have samples at the till. Another option for the drugstore, is the little travel-sized bottles of shampoo, lotion and other bits that they sell for around £1 of many different products - great way to try things out for cheap!

Like I said, samples are tiny so it's good to keep them where you know you'll use them. I personally use a box that I got in a Christmas set, and keep it where I do my make-up so in the mornings, I think about trying a product that day. Skincare stuff I usually try when I'm off to my boyfriend's for the night or on holiday - small and easy to carry :)

It's like a little mall in there! :P

I personally love sample hauling. You get to try things and really get a feel of the product you are about to invest in - can you imagine how much you can save by trying stuff out first? If you can try on clothes for free, why not make-up/skincare? It's also quite exciting to have so many things to try ;) Also like I said above, if you love the sample, the product that you thought was expensive at first, wont feel as expensive or as risky as it would if you'd never tried it. It's all worth it in the end, trust me! :)

So yea, that's my 2 cents about sample hauling - it's good for you, it's good for them, it's good for your wallet, so there's really nothing to be afraid of :) Hope that helped!

Do you sample haul?
What have you bought after trying a sample? :)

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10 October 2011

Overdue Japan Haul!

I know I've been back for a while, but after getting comments and tweets about interest in Japan and their make-up, I decided to do a video on my "repurchase list" that I always do when I'm back, and also show you some bits that I picked up for the first time. Hopefully this will help for those of you who love East Asian skincare, make-up or for those of you who are hoping to visit in the future :)

If you are interested in looking at websites that sell Japanese make-up, I found a post/list on Musings of a Muse that may help you out. Be warned - make-up is a totally different thing in Japan, and a lot of products wont be the consistency or have the effect that you may be used to if you are accustomed to Western make-up - it's all part of the fun really! :) If you have any questions I'll do my best to answer - but I'm not that knowledgeable on Japanese make-up either :P

I'm still yet to try the big brands like RMK, Addiction, Cle de Peau, Shiseido and Paul & Joe - but they are just so bloody expensive :P I'm a pretty hardcore drugstore girl when I'm back in Japan ;P

Have you tried any Japanese cosmetics/skincare?
Which is your favourite? :)


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7 October 2011

Review: Origins Eye Doctor

I feel like I've been saying this before every post but - long time no see! :P

If you follow me on Twitter (which you should) you would know that I had a little splurge on a certain skincare item, after experiencing severe skin panic in the dryness in the UK. Yep, I popped my Origins cherry and had a very lovely experience choosing out the Eye Doctor at Peter Jones :)

Okay so I must have been mental, because spending £25 on this dinky jar when unemployed can only be describe as, well, mental. And while I do shudder at the thought of repurchasing after I'm done, I can also say that I don't regret this purchase - at all.

First of all, it LOOKS pretty. The jar is cute and round, and the colour is gorgeous. Yes it is unsanitary to stick your finger in there but what are you going to do? Jars are always cuter and that's how I justify it! You get 15mL of product which is very little in numbers, but in reality, this is how much you need for one eye:

So not too scared about shelling out £25 again anytime soon.

The smell is a waft of refreshing cucumber, and the consistency is a luxurious, creamy yet smooth balm. The feeling when you smooth it over under your eyes is priceless - it really is such a pleasure to apply!

So what does this baby claim to do? Somewhere on the box I think I read something about it bettering dark circles and whatnot but honestly, when do you ever hear about dark circles getting better other than getting more sleep? I went to a spa once and the lady told me that the best way to get rid of them was to massage them so the fluids get flowing.. anyway, I digress.

The main claim is nothing special - it claims to moisturize any areas around the eye. It's a bog basic eye cream, and that's what was appealing to me. But unlike other eye creams, it's neither "light" nor "heavy" - it genuinely moisturises and nourishes, instead of just making you think it moisturises by being thick or watery. You can feel the difference after you apply it, and you do feel it really absorbing.

I know people may want to know what to choose between this and the GinZing eye cream, so I'll give you my 2 cents as I tried a sample. The GinZing, to me, is not as moisturizing and is more of a make-up product because of the pearl inside that lessens the appearance of dark circles (it does work very well for that though!). Personally this would put me off of using it at night because it draws away from the main thing I wanted, which was moisturization. I figured my concealer would take care of my dark circles :)

Does the Eye Doctor do its job? Absolutely. Like I said, the consistency itself is like a smooth luxurious cream-balm hybrid (which is leaning more towards the cream..) and you can feel the moisture on your skin as soon as you apply it. It doesn't absorb particularly fast but I'm not too fussed cuz I'd like it to stay around long enough for my concealer application to go smoothly.

You'll have the wet-look for a bit under your eye, so some people may want something different for the day time (like GinZing!) but I actually wanted this, because I was looking for a heavy duty, no gimmick eye cream to battle what's ahead in the winter months and I can say I am 100% satisfied!

My only negative about this would be something very personal - my milia seems to be getting a bit worse. I think I have a danger of this no matter what I use, as too much moisture or lack of exfoliation can cause this - I have no idea what to do because 1) my undereyes would be dry otherwise and 2) the skin seems too gentle to exfoliate, so if anyone has suggestions for this please let me know!

Anyway I can't rave about this enough. My selling point for this would be the PURE luxury of the consistency, the moisturisation that is truly moisturising and not just wet or heavy, and the great ingredients. If you love luxury, if you love natural ingredients, or if you want to give your eyes a bit more loving than a drugstore eye cream - I'd definitely recommend the Origins Eye Doctor.

What is your favourite eye cream?
What's your number one eye concern?

You can buy this eye cream from John Lewis for £25 :)

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2 October 2011

September Favourites :)

Did I say I'd get back to posting regularly? What a load of bollocks that was - sorry! :P

September was madness in calendar form. I went to Kyoto with my mom, I had university bureaucracy to deal with, I came back to the UK and am still in the process of adapting to city life (did anyone try to get on the Jubilee line today?! My goodness, I felt like I was back in rush hour Tokyo!), and I'm starting uni in 2 days! Madness in calendar form.

So I'm back now but not going to make any promises of consistent posting as I have no idea how long this madness intends to continue for! But October promises to be a great month with meet-ups and reunifications with some favourite bloggers - and the TOWIB event of course! :) Excitingggg tiiiimesss!

Anyway, enough babbling :)

My favourite blog/YouTube by far in September had to be Sandra's YouTube. She has such an open mind about products and doesn't just stick to cult products, so she brings in loads of products in her videos that I've never heard of before. She also has really good taste, and has massively enabled me in many of her videos! :) Sandra's also incredibly honest about products no matter how big the hype, and I feel like she's one of those people who doesn't just hoard and never use products, but actually has a reason for a lot of the products she buys which adds to her personality, and also kind of gives a hint as to why and in what situation I would want something :) She also has a lovely voice to listen to! :P

And here are my favourite beauty products of September :)

Were any of these in your favourites too?
What were your favourites? :)

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