Saturday, 29 November 2014


 The Barbara Daly makeup range has been available to buy from Tesco stores for quite a few years now, I admit that I'd usually walk straight past this brand as it didn't appeal to me until last year, I decided to have a little nose at the products and swatched some things.  I fell in love with the Radiant Touch Highlighter but never got round to buying it, fast forward 2014 the whole brand has had a revamp and is now known as BD Trade Secrets.
I stumbled across a small clearance section in Tesco recently full of the old range, they were clearly trying to get rid of it all as they had now stocked up on the new products.  There were a couple of eyeshadow shades, lipliners, lipsticks and a few other bits.  The first thing that grabbed my attention was this beautiful eyeshadow...
The shade is "Parisienne Peach" and it's a shimmery golden peach.  I absolutely love this colour and it's perfect for the summer months for that bronzy fresh look.  For £1.00 you definitely can't go wrong so I suggest you make a trip to your nearest Tesco store and see if they have any of these on clearance.   I've swatched it on the back of my hand and it really is a stunning shade, I don't own anything else like it which is a bonus and the packaging is very sleek and sturdy. 
After having a big obsession with lipliners recently I spotted this one in the shade "Fig" I'm such a sucker for nude lipliners so picked it up for only £2.00.  It's quite a dark nude and will be perfect for my darker skinned clients or if someone wants to go for the 90's dark nude lip look.  I love how it's creamy and glides onto the lip without dragging it (I hate those ones!)... I can't wait to start using this.

Do you own anything from Barbara Daly?

Thursday, 27 November 2014


When it comes to drugstore makeup, Maybelline is one of the more luxurious lower-end brands and offers a wide range of top quality makeup which is very affordable.  I spotted these two new lip products in Tesco when I was browsing the cosmetics section (my ritual whenever I go into Tesco...) both were on offer, who doesn't love a good bargain?  I swatched all of the shades and decided on these two.  I've been swaying more towards nude coloured lips lately and these two looked lovely when swatched on the back of my hand.
Here we have the Maybelline Color Drama lip pencil in the shade "630 Nude Perfection" these are quite drying but perfect for quickness and are very versatile.  You can use it as a lipliner, lipstick or a base under your lipstick/gloss.  I already own the shade "210 Keep It Classy" which is a dupe of MAC Rebel lipstick, I do find these very drying on the lips so I make sure to exfoliate and apply some sort of balm before applying.  I like the shade of this one as it's very wearable and I find these pencils very easy to apply, I prefer to use these as a lipstick base.

I've been eyeing up these new Color Elixir lip colours for a while now and my attention was brought to this beautiful shade "720 Nude Illusion" which matches my new lip pencil perfectly.  The brush is fabulous, it's the perfect size as it fits the lip comfortably and glides on with ease.  The product itself is non sticky and leaves a gorgeous glossy finish without the need of a touch up for at least a couple of hours.  You can see below the lip combo of both the lip pencil and gloss...

Like I said these were on offer in Tesco, the lipgloss was £4.99 and the lip pencil was £3.99.  Bargain :)

Monday, 24 November 2014


Urban Decay is one of those brands that's been out for years but has only just recently became popular (with thanks to the famous Naked palettes).  I remember when I first got into makeup when I was around age 14/15 and I spotted Urban Decay in Debenhams, I'd swatch the eyeshadows and drool over the gorgeous glitter liners but could never afford any of it.  I remember getting my first Urban Decay products when I was 17 and now I own a few other bits and bobs because I love the brand.  It's a very edgy brand, it's bright and they have amazing eyeshadow palettes.
Moving on... I ordered these goodies from FeelUnique as they had 10% discount on selected items.  I hadn't bought anything from Urban Decay in ages so thought I'd pick up a couple of bits with the discount...
First up we have lipliner, I've kind of got an obsession with lipliners lately and love the creamier ones that glide onto the lips.  This is in the shade "Bang" and it's a bright red shade which glides on effortlessly.  This cost £10.80 with the discount, I'd definitely purchase this full price and really want to get more shades.
Then we have the lipstick also in the shade "Bang" which is the matching shade to the lipliner.  Both the lipstick and lipliner are very vibrant and opaque, you only need to apply one coat of each as the pigmentation is unreal.  This lipstick was £13.50 and I'd also consider buying more of these even at full price, it's very creamy, it leaves a shiny finish to the lips and is very long lasting.
The packaging is amazing too, very sleek and grungy.  You can see me wearing both the lipliner and lipstick below, isn't it just the perfect red for the festive season?  I'll be wearing both products throughout December to get into the festive spirit.  This red is also perfect for summer as it's a bright red which goes amazingly well with bronzy, summery makeup.
Then finally we have the setting spray.  I've used this before but only the travel sized version and it only lasted a couple of months so buying these larger sizes only made sense as it was £25.00 for the two (considering the small travel sized is £9.00 for one).  It's amazing to keep makeup on longer and sets it into place, perfect for us oily skinned gals.  I'll use one for myself and put the other in my kit as I love using setting sprays on my clients so their makeup lasts much longer.

Have you purchased anything from Urban Decay recently?

Saturday, 22 November 2014


Lime Crime Babette lipstick

- Beautiful pastel coral shade
- Looks amazing with smokey eyes
- Comes in gorgeous packaging
- Very opaque, creamy finish
- Shade is rare and very hard to find
- Suits all skin tones 

I ended up buying two of these, one for myself and one for the giveaway... isn't it such a gorgeous shade?

Good Luck!

Thursday, 20 November 2014


How gorgeous is this new lipgloss set from MAC Cosmetics?!  The Objects of Affection Nude & Coral lipgloss set Is the perfect gift to try out some new shades or perfect to share with friends.  I treat myself to this set after lusting over the new Christmas collection, at first I couldn't decide which set to buy, it was a tough decision between this one and one of the pigment sets.  I knew I had enough eyeshadows and pigments to last me a lifetime and I'm always on the hunt for some nice lip glosses for my makeup kit so it made more sense to go for these instead.  
You get four mini lipglosses and they come packaged in a beautiful box which has a glitter finish on the lid.  I love the Christmas sets because the packaging always comes in handy for something, I'll probably store lashes in here.
There's three Cremesheen Glass and one Dazzleglass included in the set and they're all beautiful shades.  It's so hard to choose my favourite but I love the Dazzleglass 'Courtly Coral' because their brushes are way better and apply more product compared to the Cremesheen glosses.  I know I'll get use out of every single shade especially for bridal/prom makeup and obviously use them on myself from time to time.

You can buy this gift set along with others from the collection from MAC for £26.00.

Have you bought anything from the new Christmas collection?

Wednesday, 19 November 2014


As soon as the colder weather hits, my skin turns quite dry and I tend to get more spots mainly around the chin area.   Recently I've been on the hunt for a new cleanser that would remove heavy makeup, being a makeup artist I do tend to wear heavy makeup sometimes during the day and at the end of the day I just want to use something gentle yet effective to get rid of every last trace of makeup including mascara.  That's when I discovered this beauty... Origins 'Clean Energy' which I purchased from the Origins official website.  I'd looked up plenty of reviews beforehand (as always) and realised that this was really popular and loads of bloggers recommended it.

I've never tried anything from Origins before but knew it was a good skincare brand from all the positive reviews I'd seen.  The good thing about ordering from the official website is that you get 2 free samples with every order so I opted for GinZing Eye Cream which I got about 3-4 uses out of the small sachet and it was really good, it provided a brightening effect on the eye area and I'd certainly pick up a full sized jar of this in the near future.  The second sample I got was the Modern Friction dermabrasion exfoliator which was really nice too and felt like it got rid of all the gunk on my skin, I only had one use out of this sachet but my skin felt really soft and clean afterwards.  

My order only took about three days to arrive and it all come neatly packaged.  The size of the cleanser is 200ml which is huge and the good thing is you only need a tiny amount for each use so this product will last ages.  I tend to only use it to remove makeup and it gets rid of every single bit and doesn't leave my skin feeling tight and dry.  It also removes mascara and leaves my skin feeling fresh afterwards ready to apply moisturiser.

-It's non-comedogenic
-Removes dirt, makeup and pollutants with high efficiency
-Leaves skin feeling soft and clean
-Best for all skin types
-You get plenty of product for a decent price which will last a long time (I've had mine two months and you can see in the picture how little has been used)

-The only con is the packaging, sometimes you can pour too much out and it's a waste of product.  I definitely think they should repackage it into something less wasteful.

You can purchase Origins 'Clean Energy' from their official website for £22.50 200ml.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014


After months of being a brunette and wanting a good change but having no idea what colour to go, I finally took the plunge and got my hair Ombre'd.  Now ombre hair has been quite popular for the past couple of years but I was never really keen on it at first, my best friend got hers done quite a while ago and I started to gradually get used to it and it grew on me.  
At the beginning of this year I went fully blonde but I felt like it washed me out and my makeup didn't look as good so I put a light brown box dye on it and felt back to normal.  I'm naturally quite fair anyway but after being brunette for the past 4/5 years it's hard to go back blonde as I think being brunette makes you look more healthy and makes your skin look better.  I do envy girls who pull off blonde/bleached hair so well and have their makeup look immaculate so I thought i'd go for the ombre look as it won't be as harsh and if I don't like it I'll just let it grow out as you don't need to worry about getting roots redone every so often.
I got my hairdresser friend to come to my house and do it for me, the whole process took around two and a half hours but it was so worth it.  She started off by bleaching the bottom section of my hair then rinsed it off after around 20-30 minutes.  She then put the darker colour on the top of my head and I think a medium brown in the middle to blend into the blonde, left it on for another 30 minutes then rinsed again.  I also wanted a good trim as I hadn't had it cut in quite a while so she trimmed an inch or two off my hair but still kept the length as I love my hair long.  Throughout the whole process I couldn't see what she was doing as I wasn't sat in front of a mirror so I was really excited to see the final look.  Once she blowdried my hair I looked in the mirror and it looked much better than I expected, I was really pleased with it.  

The same evening I purchased some clip-in hair extensions from Lush Hair Extensions.  I only ever get this brand as they are good quality and very reasonably priced, I ended up picking the 'Dark Honey Blonde #16' as they looked like the closest match to the bottom section of my new hair colour.   I never buy from the actual Lush Hair website as it's more expensive than their shop on E-bay, I paid £34.99 in total for 20inch length here.  They only took three days to arrive and when they came I got them straight out of the packet to colour match against my natural hair and it was the perfect match! (Thank the lord)... I bought a cheap brown dye from Tesco and dyed the tops of the hair extensions to give the ombre effect, it was really easy to do.  If you wanna give it a go yourself then check out this video.  

I highly recommend ombre hair and will definitely continue to get it done (until I get bored again)...

Have you ever had ombre hair?

Friday, 7 November 2014


I get so many compliments on my brows
"I love your brows!"   "I wish I had your brows"   "I want your brow shape!"    "How did you get your brows like that?"    "Who does your brows?"    "What products do you use for your brows?" ...

Those are the main comments I get and even though lot's of girls love my brows I'm still not 100% happy with them.  There's always room for improvement as you all know and we always want what we can't have... I do take plenty of care with my brows and yes I was one of those 'over pluckers' back when I was at school (who wasn't?) but after years of growth, getting them HD'd and conditioning them with lot's of castor oil, my brows are in the best shape they've ever been in!

So, I guess you want to know how to get the WOW brow don't you? ... I cannot stress enough that your brows won't become perfect overnight, it takes a lot of time and effort to get them to grow and get them in a neat shape to suit your facial features.  I know what it's like to get all happy with the tweezers as I was addicted to plucking my brows when I was aged 13/14, of course you can still tweeze them but I only recommend to tweeze the strays and let your brows grow.

Now in my opinion, brow serums DO NOT WORK!  Please save your money, the best treatment for brow growth is natural products such as castor oil which is what I use pretty much every night before bed.  I just dip a clean disposable mascara wand into the castor oil, brush it through my brows by doing lot's of different motions (back and forth, up and down) and apply the rest onto my lashes so that they can get the benefit of the oil too.

I strongly recommend getting the HD Brow treatment (make sure the salon/beautician is on the official HD Salon Finder as there's so many people claiming that they do HD brows but aren't actually trained with the company).  I tend to get this treatment every 4-6 months just to keep my brows in perfect shape, if you've got sparse/thin brows then I'd recommend going through a 'growth programme' where you'll need to get them done more often so that they grow out and get a nice shape.  The treatment can be expensive but I'm very lucky because here in Teesside it's quite cheap (£15-£20) I know in some cities they can range from £30-£45.

For the period in between getting my brows HD'd, I wax them, tint them, thread them (slightly) and tweeze the stray hairs just to keep them in tip top condition.  It's very important that I have perfect brows for my job role especially when I wear heavy makeup looks, eyeshadows look so much better when there's a neat/clean brow and it's also nicer to look at.  I've only recently started waxing my own brows the past year as I'm qualified in eye treatments (wax, tint, lash extensions, cluster lashes) and I also done a threading course but not totally confident at doing them on clients just yet.  I prefer to wax rather than tweeze as the wax gets rid of the shortest, blondest hairs that I'd never be able to see if I was just using the tweezers.  It gives a very clean finish and makeup goes on much smoother which is always a plus!

You need to also trim your brows especially at the front (inner section).  You can see in the picture above where I've brushed up my brows at the front and trimmed them so they go in a perfect clean line without looking bushy.  This gives a nice natural look as I find harsh block colours at the front of brows are way too harsh and ruin the whole concept, try to stay light/natural at the front of the brow then get darker and more defined towards the middle/ends.

The below image shows you the perfect brow for every single face shape...
Once you have your perfect shape, your face will be framed so much nicer... there's nothing worse than someone with a gorgeous face with awful brows that ruin it.  Thick brows make you look younger too as they soften your features, so for you mature ladies out there get growin'!  Another thing... if you have a wide nose you can make it look more narrow by growing your brows at the front (or drawing/powdering/pencilling) which will give he illusion of a more defined nose.

What products do I use?
You already know I swear by Castor Oil - this is very hard to find in shops but easy to find online, I bought mine from Ebay a while ago for less than a fiver.

Tweezerman tweezers are the best - no questions asked!  You can get these from Boots, Superdrug etc. and they are totally worth the price so invest in your brows and get some of these bad boys.

I used to use a MAC matte brown eyeshadow to fill in my brows but since buying a HD Brow palette, I find the powder to glide on easier and has more pigmentation for the brows.

Sometimes I'll use MAC Brow Gel to set my brows if I'm going somewhere for the full day or if it's very humid, just to keep them in place and to stop the brow powder from fading.

I swear by Crown Brush C158 Angle Liner/Spoolie brush which costs only £2.99, how cheap?!  I own two of these... one for myself and one for my kit, it's THAT good.

So that's pretty much all I use on my brows - doesn't seem like much but once you have a decent shape and thickness there's no need to use tonnes of products on your brow area.

If you'd like to ask any questions or anything regarding brows or products mentioned in this post then feel free to leave a comment :)


Thursday, 6 November 2014


 Todays look was totally random, I wanted to use my new Makeup Geek pigment in 'Insomnia' so I just started messing about with a few shades and came up with this...
I wanted all the focus on the eyes so kept contouring to a minimum and the lips simple.  I did add a pop of coral blush to the cheeks just for some colour, I think it compliments the lipstick shade perfectly.  Check out what I used below...
- Yes To Tomatoes moisturiser (base)
 Graftobian HD creme foundation (2 shades mixed)
- Amazing Cosmetics concealer (under the eyes)
- Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder (to set concealer)
- MAC MSF Natural powder - medium plus (to set foundation)
- Sleek Contour kit - medium (to lightly add definition to cheeks)
- Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour Blush in the shade 'Frisky'
MAC Extra Dimension Skinfinish in 'Superb' (to highlight cheekbones)

- HD Brow powder
- MAC Paint Pot in 'Soft Ochre' (prime lids)
- Makeup Geek pigment in 'Insomnia' (lid)
- Makeup Geek eyeshadow in 'Beaches & Cream' (crease)
- Makeup Geek eyeshadow in 'Corrupt' (outer lid)
- Maybelline black gel liner (applied with pointed liner brush)
- Red Cherry lashes #102

- MAC lip liner in 'In sync'
- Lime Crime lipstick 'Babette' 

Wednesday, 5 November 2014


If you haven't heard of Makeup Geek then now is your chance to get to know a little bit about the brand and see why it's so popular.  After years of watching Marlena on Youtube and her amazing makeup tutorials/reviews, I was really excited when I found out she'd produced her very own makeup line known as Makeup Geek.
Hearing so many positive reviews on the MUG eyeshadows which cost less than half the price of MAC shadows, I ended up ordering a few to see what all the fuss was about.  I've made three orders from MUG up to now, my first order was for four single pan eyeshadows in the shades 'Corrupt' 'Mocha' 'Frappe' and 'Peach Smoothie' which you can see in the first quad below.  I loved how buttery soft and pigmented they were so decided to put in another order which was for three single pan eyeshadows in the shades 'Beaches & Cream' 'Cocoa Bear' and 'Mango Tango' then recently put in my third order which was for another three single pan eyeshadows in the shades 'Shimma Shimma' 'Homecoming' and 'Preppy', two pigments in the shades 'Utopia' and 'Insomnia' and a pair of Red Cherry false lashes in #102.
 They came all the way from the United States where Marlena is from but the delivery was quite fast considering they came from overseas.  Each eyeshadow pan comes in quirky packaging as you can see below and cost $5.99 each which is roughly £3.75!!!!
After freelancing for a while and realising that hardly anybody chooses colourful eyeshadow looks, I opted to go for all neutral shades.  I seriously can't even explain how soft these eyeshadows are, they blend like a dream and are extremely pigmented... I can't believe that they're so cheap!!!!
I bought two MAC empty quads so I could put my new MUG shadows in and they fit perfectly.  The empty quads are available online here for £5.00 each, I have another one on the way to fit my extra shadows in as they're really sturdy and inexpensive.
All of the eyeshadow pans have stickers on the bottom to show what shade it is, I think this is very handy as it's not always easy to remember the name of an eyeshadow just by looking at it in a palette.  Below are my two newest shades 'Preppy' and Homecoming' waiting for their new home (MAC quad) to arrive!
Next up are the two pigments I bought by recommendation from Kathleen Lights on Youtube.  She made two videos reviewing all of the products for MUG and went into great detail and even showed swatches of each item.  I wasn't initially wanting to get any of the pigments but after her review I fell in love with the shades 'Utopia' and 'Insomnia' which are really sparkly and perfect for the festive season.
One of the pigments came in the new packaging and the other came in the old.  The new packaging has a sifter at the top to prevent spillage.  'Insomnia' is the one that came without the sifter but it's not as messy as I thought.  These pigments cost $6.99 each which is a complete bargain.
Below are swatches of both pigments, they're just so bloody gorgeous!  
I'm really excited to try out 'Insomnia' as it's meant to be a dupe for MAC blue-brown pigment.  Keep an eye out for some looks very soon with these shades...
My overall thoughts on this brand?  Amazingly cheap, top quality, pure pigmentation, stunning shades, buttery softness and just incredible.  I'd totally recommend the eyeshadows and pigments to anyone, makeup artists or anyone who just loves makeup and for the price they are amazing quality and perfect for experimenting.  I've used most of the eyeshadows on clients and they blend perfectly, I tend to use 'Peach Smoothie' in the crease for most looks on clients and on myself and it gives a lovely diffused look without being too ashy.

I will be doing makeup looks using the eyeshadows and pigments so keep an eye out for them :)  I didn't bother swatching the shadows as they have them all on the Makeup Geek website... make sure you check them out.

Have you tried anything from Makeup Geek?


As a makeup artist, I love playing with makeup especially when I'm bored... I just whip out my makeup, sit in front of a big mirror and experiment with different looks - and take lot's of selfies ofcourse...
I wanted to do a Bollywood style look so I ordered a bindi from ebay which only cost a couple of quid.  They have so many styles and colours just type in bindi on ebay and they all come up.  I opted for this amber colour which would compliment my blue eyes, it only took a couple of days to arrive.
I ended up using autumn shades on the eyes and a nice dark berry lip with big thick lashes for extra Bollywood glam!  List of products used:

- Graftobian HD creme foundation (2 shades mixed)
- Maybelline Instant Anti-Age Eraser Concealer in 'Light' (under eyes to highlight)
- Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder (to set concealer)
- MAC MSF Natural powder in 'Medium Plus' (to set foundation)
- MAC Pro Sculpting Cream on the cheeks and forehead
- MAC Extra Dimension Skinfinish in 'Superb' (to highlight cheekbones)

- HD Brow powder - mix of two shades
- MAC Paint Pot in 'Soft Ochre' (to prime lids)
- Urban Decay eyeshadow in 'Naked' (crease)
- Makeup Geek eyeshadows: 'Corrupt' outer corner and lower lash line, 'Frappe' outer lid
- MAC eyeshadows: 'Nylon' tear duct and brow bone, 'Brash' all over the lid (limited edition)
- Maybelline black gel liner (applied with pointed liner brush)
- Maybelline Colossal Go Extreme Leather Black mascara
- Eylure lashes in '145' (I hate the thick band on these but love the lash style)

- MAC lipstick in 'Media' 
I love the 'Brash' eyeshadow - this is from an old MAC quad I got years ago, it's called the 'Spiced Chocolate' quad.  I used the 'Frappe' shade from Makeup Geek to blend 'Brash' into the black 'Corrupt' shade to give a diffused look so there were no harsh edges.  I'm obsessed with the Makeup Geek shadows I currently own 7 and have more on the way... they are amazingly pigmented and so cheap!  Will be doing a review on them very soon so keep an eye out for it :)

Tuesday, 4 November 2014


After hearing some good and bad reviews on the new YSL Black Opium fragrance, I wanted to sniff it myself so I could decide if it was a winner or not.  My local Boots store had it stocked so I had a little spray and instantly fell in love... it's absolutely gorgeous!  With hints of vanilla and black coffee, it's the perfect winter scent and will be lovely for any special occasion.

I was contacted recently by James from Vouchercloud regarding my Eylure lash review which I purchased from Boots a couple of weeks back.  Vouchercloud is a voucher code website which has plenty of codes for different stores/websites, James advised me that Vouchercloud currently has voucher codes for Boots which is one of my favourite stores to get makeup and other bits and bobs so I checked out the link for the Boots codes which you can find here.  

I wasn't expecting to find anything decent but the £5.00 off fragrance at Boots caught my eye.  After wanting the new YSL perfume (which is on my Christmas list by the way) and seeing that it's currently on offer at £55.35 I showed my mother and put in the voucher code which then brought the total to just £50.35 ... (Normal price for 50ml is £61.50) ... a big saving of £11.15 - this offer was far too good to miss so we purchased the perfume and because it was over £50.00 it included free delivery.  It will arrive within 3-5 days and will be put away until Christmas day as one of my gifts.

I must say, I'm really pleased that James contacted me to let me know about this fabulous website and also helped save some money which was a bonus!

You can purchase the 50ml YSL Black Opium from Boots and use the £5.00 off voucher code 'UKGRAG5' for your discount or use it for any other perfume on the website... Happy shopping :)

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