12 October 2016

Autumn Beauty Haul & Reveiw

Even though I may have been a little quiet on the blogging front over the last few months, that doesn't mean I haven't been indulging in a few new beauty purchases, lets just say my postman has been kept pretty busy (ahem). I'll admit it, I've been exceptionally naughty as you will see below, but I like to think about it as "important beauty research". I'm sure you fellow bloggers understand, right? As I've had most of these products a while I thought I would let you know my first impressions with a few miniature reviews, instead of just your standard "Haul" so lets get started... grab your pumpkin spiced latte because this might be a long one.

A picture of some new beauty products.

I always fall victim to beauty hype, but thankfully with this texturising spray, it really is well deserved. One mist of this fine, lightweight spray manages to hold my curls without leaving them crunchy or sticky, plus it injects a tonne of volume. I have to say it, I think this spray may even beat Orbie and you know how much I love that stuff, hell I even bought the full size, so you can imagine how happy both me and my wallet are.

I promised myself after falling in love with the Luna Oil that I would try to watch my pennies when it came to skincare, but after trying a few samples of this pricey treatment I knew I had to bite the bullet and order the full size. This Lactic Acid based treatment has been a permanent fixture in my routine over the last month and I've certainly noticed a difference in the condition of my skin. It's brighter, I've had fewer breakouts and the ones I have had, have cleared up so much faster, even my pores look smaller, I'm really impressed. Considering I've had my Luna Oil over 10 months and there's still a quarter of the product left, I expect this one to last just as long.

Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Mist $48
Ok, this miniature bottle came in a special Sephora skincare set, which I may have bought purely so I could try this hyped up face mist, I know, I have issues. Though to be honest, I've not been that impressed, it does add a little "dew" to my skin but that's about it. It claims to be a mist moisturiser, that gives a luminous glow to the skin, but I was very underwhelmed. It didn't set my makeup or enhance it in anyway. Maybe this mist would work better for extremely dry skin, but for me this was average, definitely not worth the high price tag.

Mascara's are one makeup product that I think you can never try enough of, you get my drift, so I was intrigued to try this offering which on one end has a "Supersizing Primer" with a "lengthening Topcoat" on the other. I've always been wary of white mascara primers as they can be hard to cover, but this one was pretty good. I can't say it gave my lashes added volume, but it was ok as mascaras go, a little clumpy but decent. I'll continue to work with it, as sometimes mascara formulas change as they dry out over time.

Another day, another lip liner added to my very saturated lip product collection, but you know what? I don't care hehe. You all know how much I love the Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks, well when I discovered they had come out with a whole new range of lip liners, I had to pick one up, in a standard "Claire" colour of course. It's a gorgeous pinky mauve shade, similar to Mac Soar and the smooth texture is very reminiscent of the Rimmel Exaggerate Lip Liners (which I also love).

Colourpop Ultra Matte in Times Square
I made another Colourpop order a few weeks ago, (you can read my "Shipping Colourpop To The UK Post" to find out how) and I timed it perfectly as they had an offer on where you got to pick a free Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick for every $10-12 you spent. So I picked up two colours along with my order, one dark berry shade and this cool toned grey nude, which I have become obsessed with! It's not normally a colour I would go for, but I love it. As long as I apply lip balm beforehand it sits pretty comfortably on my lips and stays around for a good - four hours. Not bad for a free lippie huh, though I have a feeling this shade could possibly be limited edition.

Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops in Celestial

When you literally wait two months for a product to come back into stock you're obviously going to be excited when it finally arrives at your door, even more so when you swatch said product and realise how absolutely stunning it is. The words liquid gold really do come to mind with this beautiful cool toned, metallic highlighter. One drop leaves your skin shimmering like a beacon. They're definitely not cheap, but I can't imagine anyone using up this whole bottle, I think even the most hard core #highlightonfleek strobers would struggle.

Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips Lipstick in Sexy Sienna

Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips Lipstick in Sexy Sienna £23
I'll let you into a secret, way back in 2006 when I first started reading fashion magazines I became obsessed with Sienna Miller, when she was still with Jude Law, before #nannygate. She was my boho/hippie style icon, so when I discovered that CT named a lipstick after her I just had to pick it up. The fact that it turned out to be a gorgeous warm coral shade just happened to be a bonus.

This highlighter has such a unique texture, is it a cream? Is it a powder? It definitely sits in-between, but when it's applied to the skin it has more of a satin feel. The finish is more subtle than the Cover FX, highlighter but it's still all kinds of stunning.

Colourpop Supershock Eyeshadow in Weenie $5
I added a few more Colourpop eyeshadows to my collection, this is the only shade I've tried so far but I absolutely love it. It's the perfect metallic rose gold shade, created by the lovely KathleenLights and named after one of her three dogs. I've been wearing this shade over the top of 'Salted Caramel' from the Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette, and they really do make the perfect autumn colour combination.

L-R Colourpop Lunch Money /  Colourpop Weenie /  Cover FX Celestial / Charlotte Tilbury Sexy Sienna / Colourpop Times Square / Stila Zinfandel

Hopefully you liked this more detailed account of my most recent beauty purchases, let me know what you've bought over the last month or so?

XOXO Claire

11 September 2016

August 2016 Beauty Favourites

I never thought I would say this, but this beauty blogger may be turning into a creature of habit. I found it harder than usual to pick my stand out beauty products over the last few months, I don't know whether that's down to feeling a little uninspired in the general blogging sense, but I'm just feeling a little blurgh... Hopefully the start of Autumn will reignite my spark, but until then here's my end of summer, beauty favourites round up, featuring a few golden oldies and some new routine staples.

A picture of my August 2016 Beauty Favourites
Laura Mercier Almond Coconut Body Butter £27
I've mentioned this line many times before, but the lizard like skin on my arms and legs were crying out for some marzipan scented hydration. It's super moisturising without leaving your limbs feeling greasy or sticky, it just melts into your skin. As for the scent, I'm not normally a marzipan scented fan, I can't stand the stuff, but for some reason the ratio of almond to coconut is just enough without becoming sickly.

Briogeo Rosarco Milk Leave In Conditioning Spray £18.50
Considering how temperamental my hair is, I can seriously resemble Monica from Friends if I use the wrong combination of products, my hair is very "High Maintenance" I even did a whole post about it. So finding a good leave in conditioner that de-tangles, reduces frizz without weighing my hair down is tough, but this one is a real winner, it does all that while still leaving my hair hydrated and soft, plus it smells damn good too. I bought this from Sephora as it came in a miniature set (hence why it's so small), but I recently found this brand is now sold on Look Fantastic, which is well... fantastic!

A picture of the Zoeva Cocoa Blends Eyeshadow Palette
Zoeva Cocoa Blends Eyeshadow Palette £18
I've really pared down my eyeshadow lately, if I wear any at all it's been from this stunning Zoeva Palette. I generally just sweep "Substitute For Love" through my crease for a bit of definition, or if I'm feeling a more warm look I'll add in a bit "Freshly Toasted". Just look at all these shades, gorgeous colour selection, buttery, smooth, pigmented, what more could you want? Now I'm coveting their Nude Spectrum Palette (uh oh).

A picture of my August 2016 Beauty Favourites
Colour Wow One Minute Transformation Styling Cream £9
I like to call this cream my "Frizz Fixer". When I apply it to my freshly dried hair it really helps tame all my fly-aways leaving behind a smooth, sleek base. It certainly does "Transform" my "Monica" barnet into a more manageable style. It's quickly becoming a hair staple, which is funny considering it's been sat in my drawer for over a year untouched. I really should go through my sample draw more often, there could be some hidden gems just waiting to be discovered.

A picture of my Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk
Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk £16
Ok, I know, I know, I've mentioned this lip liner more times than even I can count, but it's simply That good it deserves to be a member of every monthly beauty post! If I can't decide what lip colour to wear I always turn to this one, the soft, creamy, pinky nude colour literally goes underneath everything. Plus it gives the illusion of gorgeous juicy lips, without the risk and expense of lip fillers.

A picture of the Maybelline Matte Lipstick in Clay Crush
I never thought I would be sat here raving about a "Brown Toned" nude lipstick, but here I am, stranger things have happened. Whenever I fancy an easy to wear nude lip combination, I pop on the CT Lip Cheat and then apply this lipstick over the top. It's a fuss free, low maintenance combo with the lipstick formula being smooth and creamy, and best of all, so in-expensive.

A picture of the Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask
Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask £22.99
Not to brag, but my skin has been pretty well behaved lately, mainly blemish free, apart from a few small hormonal spots. I have quite the large collection of face masks, but when I fancy something a bit more natural, yet still hydrating and detoxifying, this one is just the ticket. It really soothes my skin, especially if it's a bit red and blotchy. Though the intoxicating vanilla scent does make me want to eat it, just to clarify I don't, but it does smell good enough to eat.

A picture of a small fan makeup brush made for highlighting
The Vintage Cosmetics Fantail Bush £11.99 * 
Gone are the days of highlighter being "just for special occasions",  now it's become a daily staple, I want my highlight to glow like a beacon, that's my goal when I wake up everyday hehe. Luckily for my non-existent bone structure I was recently sent this brush from Makeupbrushes.co.uk to try out and it's the perfect partner in crime for my Becca Champagne Pop Shimmering Skin Perfector. The soft bristles deposit just the right amount of powder and can we address the pretty in pink handle,  so cute, as is the shabby chic, floral packaging each brush comes in. This website also does free 1st class shipping, which is amazing because I know one of my biggest bugbears buying online is having to pay for shipping.

Binge Worthy TV:  Arrow
Thanks to discovering Arrow on Amazon Prime, my Netflix account has stayed pretty much untouched over the last month (apart from "That" Pretty Little Liars Finale, not going to lie I saw the end coming a mile away, but it was still great, gotta love bad-ass Hanna!). Wow, I have no idea why I waited so long to start Arrow, but I've devoured two seasons in around three weeks and I'm hooked. It's all about a very gorgeous billionaire playboy called Oliver Queen who after being presumed dead in a boat crash, returns home 5 years later, a completely changed man, who makes it his mission to protect his city. It's like a superhero version of CSI. Oh and who ever thought archery could be so hot... you're welcome!

What have you been loving and more importantly watching over the last month?  My watch lists are getting seriously low so give me some autumn TV inspiration.

                                                                                                 *PR Sample
XOXO Claire 

25 August 2016

Beauty Products On Trial: Maybelline Edition #2

When Maybelline emailed and asked me to be a part of their #MaybellineSquad, it was quite possibly the most exciting opportunity I've received so far in my beauty blogging history. If you saw my last Beauty Products On Trial: Maybelline Edition #1 post you'll know they kindly sent me a bunch of new makeup to try out and some of those products still have a place in my everyday makeup bag to this day. I honesty didn't think they could top that parcel, but they've made this lipstick lovers dream come true and hit the ball out of the park, again. So let me show you a few of the new Maybelline products that will be dropping in a Drugstore near you soon.

A picture of new Maybelline makeup
A picture of Maybellines new Colour Drama Intense Lip Paint in Never Bare
"Never Bare" A gorgeous peachy nude.
"Red-dy Or Not" A muted cherry red.
"Vamped Up" A stunning dark purple, such a unique colour.
"Fight Me Fuchsia" A bright warm toned pink.

This parcel was very lip products heavy, which I have to say thrilled me immensely. I'm sure you all know about my lipstick addiction and Maybelline sure knows how to feed it, and these Intense Lip Paints certainly got my heart racing. All four shades are right up my street, but "Vamped Up" is definitely the one that stood out to me initially,  so I couldn't wait to try it on. The formula is quite thick, so you have to be careful you don't squeeze out too much product at once, but it's very smooth. I haven't given them a full trial as of yet, but it did stick around on my lips for a good few hours, even after a bowl of coco pops haha. I'll definitely get back to you on the true staying power, let me know if you'd like to see one colour in particular in more detail, but for now just look at these swatches:

A picture of Maybellines new Colour Drama Intense Lip Paints Swatched
Sticking on the lipstick train, they've bought out the most gorgeous array of "Creamy Matte" lipsticks, just in time for the upcoming Autumn season. I know, I can't believe I just said that, but I think we need to make peace with the fact that Summer's officially over, I say bring on the berry shades and this line has a some beautiful ones!

Maybelline Colour Sensational " Creamy Matte" Lipsticks* £6.99 Each in

These lipstick apply like butter and definitely deserve their "Creamy Matte" name. I've been wearing the shade "Clay Crush" like crazy over the last few weeks, most of the time over the top of the Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk (aka - my go to lip liner) as it's a bit too brown on it's own, for me at least. They're so comfortable on the lips and the wear time is still pretty good for something that's smooth enough to spread on toast. Check out these swatches if you don't believe me.

A picture of Maybellines new Rock The Drama Eyeshadow Palette
A picture of Maybellines new Rock The Drama Eyeshadow Palette
Moving away from lipstick, lets chat about an eyeshadow palette. Now I've never tried any Maybelline eyeshadows before, so this was my first foray. Just by swatching this palette I can already tell a few of the colours are a little chalky. I haven't tried them on my eyes yet, but despite the smokey colour selection this palette hasn't completely blown me away. Though I will give it a go and report back fully.

A picture of Maybelline Super Stay Nail Polishes
This Strobing Stick in Light makes a lovely base for powder highlighter. It's very subtle on it's own, perfect if you just want a soft glow, but it becomes quite the power team if you apply Becca Champagne Pop Highlighter over the top.

I've yet to try this mascara out, but I did do a review on the original formula a while back in my "March 2016 Beauty Favourites ", so I'm excited to try this one out, I do love extra back mascaras!

What's not to love about metallic nail polishes, these scream "festive" to me, so I'm going to save them for a special occasion, but you all know how much I love their Super Stay formula. I did a whole "First Impressions Post" on this line, if you fancy a read.

A picture of Maybellines new Colour Show Preppy Woman Nail Polishes
Yet more nail polishes, Maybelline really do know how to spoil a girl. I'm definitely digging nudes at the moment, so I'm looking forward to trying out Runway Rose, and glitter always has me sold.

I was a huge fan of the very famous "On & On Bronze"shade so I'm very excited to try both of these out, I love the whole Colour Tattoo formula. I have to say it's one of the best out there for long wearing eyeshadows, they really do stay put.

Thank you to Maybelline for sending me these gorgeous products. I'm so excited to try out everything fully, I still can't believe I got picked, so thank you again!

Do any of these products tickle your fancy? I'd love to know what the most exciting opportunity you've had so far from blogging is, I'm curious.
                                                                                                  *PR Samples
XOXO Claire 

21 August 2016

Disappointing Beauty Products: Luxury Edit #3

No matter how many beauty products you try there will always be a few that end up being a bit of a disappointment, but it's even more of a disappointment when they cost a pretty penny, especially if they carry a lot of hype. So today I'm going to share a few products that just didn't work for me, you will definitely gather from this post that scents and tones play a huge part in whether a beauty product is a hit with me, so lets run through them, shall we?

A picture of Disappointing Beauty Products

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in "Carmello" & "Bellissima" £16
Now before you throw your respective laptop or phone across the room Naomi Campbell style in shock, I must state that it's the colours of these Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks, not the formula I have an issue with. They are both way too nude.  I have quite pigmented lips and they just make me look like I have the dreaded "concealer lips" which really isn't the look I'm going for! Though for the record, I do love their formulation, I wore the shade "Beso" to Taylor Swifts "Red" Tour a few years ago and still love it to this day, just make sure you pick the right shade for your skin tone.
© Claire Elizabeth Ellis. All rights reserved.