Sunday 27 February 2011

La Mer The Eye Balm Intense

My undereye area is becoming an issue for me. I can cope with the darkness and discolouration but its the increasing sagginess and puffiness that are bothering me.
I tend to be sceptical about the effects of eyes cream, having tried a huge amount but only seeing results from one (Sarah Chapman). However, I could not ignore the reviews for the Eye Balm Intense, the results people were having were nothing short of spectacular. As I don’t tend to veer beyond £50 for eye creams, the £95 price tag was an issue, but sat in the hairdressers looking at the mirror, all that looked back at me were these old, tired looking baggy eyes, giving me that final push to make the purchase.
It comes in a pot container,the standard size 15ml. The texture is a medium cream and it is slightly green in colour. It comes with a rounded silver tipped applicator which feels very cooling. You dip the applicator in the cream and then apply, starting at the the temple then sweeping under the eye.
It absorbs quickly. Although it provides enough moisture for me, I don’t think it would be enough for those with a really dry eye area. It has never irritated my eyes nor added to my milia.

I have waited nearly 6 weeks before giving you this review ( I started using this on the 11th January, I have used it everyday since, morning and night). I’d love to tell you about the amazing results I have had, but sadly cannot. I don’t expect miracles, but I was hoping to get some of the improvement which others had received, namely lessening of lines, decreased puffiness and a firmer appearance.
I took before pics in anticipation of the change I would be able to show you, I have tried to convince myself that the pictures show a slight difference, however in the flesh there is really no discernible difference.
Top picture is before I started the cream.
The cream is meant to soothe, nourish, and encourage repair. Its meant to be cooling and hydrating, fade puffiness, irritation and other signs of fatigue, its meant to strengthens the thin under eye area for a firmer, smoother, more lifted appearance. For me I would say its soothes, the applicator gives a cooling sensation and it hydrates the area, I can’t say it does anything else and for this reason I cannot recommend this to you. For reference I am in my early 30s.
I know we all have different skin which will react differently but I am utterly disappointed in this product and in myself for buying this. This was my first La Mer product and has put my off trying any other products from the brand.

I bought this from John Lewis.

Friday 25 February 2011

NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base

An eye base has become an essential for me. I want the shadows that I apply around 6:00 am to look the same 11 hours later. Whilst a good shadow formula is crucial, a good eye base just helps it go that extra mile.
NARS smudge proof base (£18) has a lot going for it; it goes on virtually clear so has no impact on the shadow you are applying and it doesn’t feel drying/uncomfortable. The disadvantages are that it takes longer to set than my other eye bases and falls down a bit in terms of boosting the shadow's wear compared to my other bases.
In terms of texture I think this is much better than my other primers. Even though its not perfect I am inclined to say this will be a re buy for me due to the texture/appearance, as the older I get the more I find eye primers can look a bit dry/crepey on my lids yet the NARS one does not.
So I have three eyebases, all in rotation, all of them with slight flaws, yet all with merits.
Swatches L-R: NARS, Too Faced Shadow insurance, Laura Mercier eye basic linen
Just an aside, but I have been having issues with my eyes watering for a few months now, and it basically seems to remove all the makeup from the inner corners of my eyes, does anyone have something similar and if you do, have you any suggestions?

I bought this from SpaceNK

Wednesday 23 February 2011

Le Métier de Beauté Precision Liquid Eyeliner

Having tried a wide range of felt tipped liners; MAC, Chanel and Armani to name a few, I can tell you that I do not get on with them. My main problems are that I cannot get a straight line, the ink migrates and they usually feel drying and irritate my eyes.
Having read a lot of good reviews for Le Metier de Beaute’s version I decided to buy it in the shade Noir (£25).
The immediate difference I noticed was the control, the flow of ink is such that I can create a thin or thick line. The tip is firm, rather than having a lot of give so it gives more precision. It lasts very well with no flaking and gives me no irritation. I was also impressed with the colour as its really crisp and inky looking.
I do find the ink migrates a little but this is probably due to me not having steady hands, as I tend to apply on the area longer than I should.

I would say that I still find brush tipped liquid liners easier to apply but this is definitely the best felt tipped liner I have tried.

I bought this online from Selfridges, however Le Métier de Beauté have since disappeared from their site, I am really hoping this is temporary.

Sunday 20 February 2011

Elemental Herbology Winter Bodycare

For years now I have had a problem with leg itchiness. I have been able to find shower gels that don’t cause me problems during application but without fail I get the itchiness during the night. I’ve tried the cheap to expensive, to the over the counter creams for treating dry itchy skin, with no success. I’ve tried various different laundry products as I wondered if that was a contributing factor, but still there was no resolution.
Having been impressed with the Elemental Herbology skincare I decided to have a look at their body range and the Winter Body Wash and Body Hydrator caught my eye.
Both products are geared towards those with dry and sensitive skin and claim to offer intensive moisturising and anti-inflammatory action.

The Velvet Skin Winter Body Wash (£21 for 200ml) comes with a body brush and is a rich textured gel containing shea butter, olive oil and aloe vera.
The texture is such that it does feel like it coats the skin slightly but not in a greasy way. I find the brush too harsh so only occasionally use it.
The Body Souffle Winter Body Hydrator (£24 for 200ml) is a medium consistency cream, it feels very moisturising, yet sinks in quickly with no greasy residue or heavy feeling.
It contains Macadamia, evening primrose oil and essential oils of rose and geranium.
These products leave my Skin feeling comfortable and soothed. I’ve surprisingly had no irritation using them over broken skin. The redness is defused and my skin feels extremely hydrated and soft. The products have a delicate herbal scent, I’m not particularly keen on it as I never lean towards essential oil type of scents but that's just a personal preference.
Due to the combined cost of the products I do only use them on my legs.

I can’t begin to tell you what a difference these have made to me, its so nice not having to see scratch marks/cuts on my legs, no longer being kept awake at night with the intensely annoying, seemingly never ending itch. I’m just so glad I gave these a try as I had all but given up on trying to find a remedy.

I bought these from SpaceNK.

Saturday 19 February 2011

Rouge Bunny Rouge Bejewelled Skylark V MAC Centre Stage

Just a quick extra post today as the lovely Jane from had wondered how Rouge Bunny Rouge Bejewelled Skylark compares to MAC Centre Stage mega metal eyeshadow.
In terms of texture, RBR is smoother and more pigmented.
Swatched below, RBR on the left
I think they are different enough to own both, the MAC is cooler, RBR is richer and warmer.

Friday 18 February 2011

Rouge Bunny Rouge: Delicate Pinks and Spring/Summer 2011 Look

With spring on the horizon I thought I'd show you some easy to wear pretty pinks from RBR I picked up.
Scrumptiously Devious Colour burst lipstick (£22) is a cool toned pink with luminous golden shimmer.
RBR lipsticks are intensely additive; the formula is comfortable, creamy, extremely moisturising and they never settle into lines.
Typically I do not get on with blush sticks as they upset my acne prone skin, I am very pleased to say that I have had no problems with the RBR blush wand ( I have waited a while to review this just to be sure). I bought shade Vermeer (£28), which is a subtle natural pink flush.
The texture is lightweight, easy to blend (does not apply patchy) and can be built for more colour intensity. What surprised me was how well this lasted as I find that a common disadvantage with cream blushers, but this was still pretty much as I had applied it after 8 hours.
Here are the Ingredients:
CHINENSIS, SQUALANE, BHT, MICA. +/-: CI 77891, CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499, CI 75470, CI 19140, CI 42090, CI 15850, CI 15985, CI 77007, CI 77510, CI 77742

Swatches L-R:Vermeer,Scrumptiously Devious
RBR have released the following Spring/Summer look, Isola Bella
Zuneta have released a video of the look here; its really interesting to see the application, and I spy a few more RBR brushes that I may need.
The eyes pair the Silk Aether Long-lasting Cream Eye Shadow ‘Batiste Grayling
and Long-lasting Duo Eye Shadow in ‘C Major - a Minor’, ( here is my review of the duo ).
The alluring cheeks and lips come courtesy of the Decadent Duo in ‘Tango Argentino’. There is a beautifully packaged Select Crown Jewels set that features the Decadent Duo and Big Lash Mascara.
Its meant to be very limited and I'm not sure yet if it will be at Zuneta. Definitely someone I want and it brings to my attention that I have not yet tried one of the Decadent Duo's (I also really want the box it comes in and yes I have been considering buying one of their present boxes).

I bought these from

Wednesday 16 February 2011

By Terry VIP Touch-Expert Advanced

With my Touche Veloutee coming to an end, instead of re-buying I got tempted by the newer concealer offered, VIP Touch-Expert Advanced. Its meant to give a moderate amount of coverage and says “signs of fatigue are erased, shadows are brightened, imperfections are diffused and fine lines are less visible”.

I should mention that as these are highlighting concealers I don’t use them alone. I have very dark circles and a lot of discoloration under my eyes so use these types of concealer combined with a fuller coverage concealer.

I bought the lightest shade Fair (£28.50). Swatched together the difference is quite noticeable and you can see the peachy tone of the Touch-Expert Advanced.
Swatches L-R:Touch-Expert Advanced, Touche Veloutee (shade Porcelain)

I have taken a picture of them on my eye area, as mentioned I wouldn’t normally use these on their own, this is just to show you colour and coverage. On your screen, the eye on the right has VIP Touch-Expert Advanced and the left Touche Veloutee, please note that the eye on your left is always more puffy.
As you can see, once applied the colour difference is barely noticeable, however in natural light I can see that the VIP is not as good a match.
Overall, I think they both have a similar light to medium coverage. They help ease off darkness/discoloration and make the area look a bit smoother than it actually is. I would say both dry to an almost powder like finish and neither are particularly moisturising. The only discernible difference I think is that the Touche Veloutee gives more illumination. As the Touche Veloutee comes in a bigger tube (6.5ml compared to the 2.5ml of the Touch-Expert Advanced) and only costs a bit more, £33, I’ll be re-buying that after I have used the Touch-Expert Advanced up.

I bought these from SpaceNK

Sunday 13 February 2011

Louise Young Cosmetics Essential Eye Palette

The Essential Eyeshadow Palette (£30) contains 5 matte shades. Off white, Grey, browned grey, black and terracotta. The Terracotta seemed somewhat out of place but was an interesting inclusion.
The shadows are smooth and have great wear, although I do not find they blend as easily as my favourite brands. The black has a dryer consistency in feel and when swatched than the others, however it applies smooth on the eye, I think it easily out performs MAC’s Carbon in terms of pigment and wear.
Apart from the Off white, the colours are extremely pigmented. After having played around with this palette I have given up trying to use the Terracotta shade. If I blend it with the other shades I end up with an unflattering murky colour as below
I’ve tried it on the lid, in the crease and neither works, I feel like I haven’t mastered how to get the best out of this palette and its due to my lack of application technique as I am sure there is a way to incorporate the terracotta.
If I ignore the terracotta I can get a soft or deep smoky look, but these colours are not unique.
I do however like this palette for the colour pay off and long lasting wear. So whilst this isn’t quite working for me I will be keeping a watchful eye on future releases from Louise Young.
Here are the shade names:
My husband bought me this from the Louise Young website (, the delivery was cheap (£2.99) and quick and they do offer international delivery.

Friday 11 February 2011

Armani Eyes to Kill Excess Mascara

Armani was at one point my favourite Cosmetic brand and I bought all and everything from them. A few bad SA experiences and the arrival of new brands has meant that I only do the occasional buy. I feel saddened to have to write a bad review as I have a soft spot for the brand and in the days of Starlash I thought their mascara’s were unbeatable.
I initially really liked their original Eyes to Kill mascara, however found the formula changed after a month, going dry and clumpy. When I received the newer Excess version (£23.50) from my mother for Christmas, I was in two minds about the success I would have.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words:
As you can see it is not flattering. The formula is thick so it weighs down my lashes and also clumps them together. I’ve tried wiping the brush, but still get the same result. It also smudges and flakes on me. After less than a months use I threw this away. Hourglass Film Noir still remains my favourite mascara.

It perhaps sounds a strange thing to say but I would like to get back into Armani, I really liked the eyes to kill cream shadow formula and want to get some of the Spring collection. Armani was the first brand that surpassed everything that I had up to that point tried (this is way back around 2003). As a cosmetic fanatic there is always comfort to be found when you can find brands that are very “you”, ones you can trust and if anyone asks that question, if you could only have one brand of makeup, you would have an answer at the ready.

Wednesday 9 February 2011

MAC Peacocky

Somewhat reminiscent of Starflash, the Mega Metal formula is creamy and easy to blend. The colour payoff and finish varies between the shades, so I would suggest to either swatch in store or read reviews first. Prance is a frosty light silver mauve, Centre Stage is a slightly shimmered rich chocolate brown.

I had to go back and get Dalliance after seeing London Makeup girl's post ( Its a light frosty gold with a chrome/silver hue, interesting mix of tones.
Shadows were £15.50 each. For a more realistic picture of Prance please see Jane’s post here:

Here is a picture of Prance and Centre Stage applied,
Here is the same application but with Dalliance and Centre Stage.
Somewhat shoddy pictures but hopefully it gives a slight idea of the colour and finish.

I went for the most sedate Kissable Lip colour, Woo Me (£16). Its a pinky beige nude. The formula feels creamy, moisturising and not sticky/tacky. However, If you lips are slightly dry this colour does highlight it and I find the colour not long lasting.

Swatches L-R: Prance, Dalliance, Centre Stage, Woo me.

Overall you’ll most likely find one thing you like from this collection, things were selling out quite fast in the store near me so if you want something probably best to grab it quick

Sunday 6 February 2011

Rouge Bunny Rouge Long-lasting Cream Eye Shadows Silk Aether

RBR has recently released 5 natural coloured Long-lasting Cream Eye Shadows (Silk Aether). They come in a compact tube (4ml) with a doe foot applicator and the consistency is creamy.
I bought Atlas Swallowtail (£26), its a neutral nude beige/sand with a luminous satin finish.
Swatched below, on left I have dabbed it on, on right I have sheered it out.
It feels lightweight, non drying and very comfortable on. It applies/blends with ease, you can apply as a sheer wash or build up for more colour intensity. There is no balling up of the product and you can apply shadows over it.
In terms of wear, my eye pictures are taken after at least 7 hours without a base, with one application of colour.
Below is a close up in natural light.
I get no creasing and very minimal colour fade.
Here are the ingredients:
An impressive formula from an inspiring brand, do I plan to get the other shades, well I think you know the answer to that.

I bought this from (they do international shipping).

Friday 4 February 2011

Bobbi Brown New Rich Lip Colour SPF 12

The new Rich Lip Color SPF 12 is the best formula BB has released so far in my opinion. The texture is quite lightweight, creamy, and initially quite moisturising (the moisturising effect soon dissipates after the first 30 minutes). It also lasts extremely well (entire working day).
The pigmentation is very impressive. When swatching them in store what become apparent is that the colours are quite pure, they don’t seem to contain lots of facets of differing tones. The result of this is that you get very clear, crisp colours.
As I’d not seen any reviews/swatches of these I picked out a colour which I thought looked like a rosy pink, No. 13. The name Mod Pink should have set off a warning siren but nevertheless that was the shade I went for. Once home , the colour looked more of a blue based pink in the tube. You can see the difference in artificial light and natural light below:
In day light this is just about wearable for me but indoors it looks too bright/too pink. The brightness is easily solved by blotting and applying a gloss on top but I do wish I had chosen another shade.
The colour in my lip picture is not as bright as it appears in real life but I wanted to give you an idea (this is just one gentle application of colour). I'd say it leans towards a semi matte finish.

I like the pigmentation and wear of this product enough to want to buy another shade but I think I’ll wait till I see some posts about these so hopefully I can make a more informed choice next time. This cost me £16.

Wednesday 2 February 2011

CTonics Haircare

I have to mention the great customer service I received from, I’ve ordered from them a few times and have always have quick delivery/samples in the order, this time there was an full sized CTonics CORE shampoo in there. There was a note to say that they had a promo coming up in a few weeks for a free CTonics shampoo so they thought they would put it in my order early. I was delighted, how many times have you gone and bought something only to have a promo turn up a week or so later. As I bought these early January the Shampoo offer should hopefully be on their website soon for those interested.
I first read about CTonics on They site themselves as a Bioactive organic range that “nourish the scalp and bring health and vitality to the hair to create a fertile foundation for healthy hair to grow”.
I have dry medium length hair which turns greasy at the roots if I don’t wash it every day. The majority of shampoos make my head itchy and make my forehead really dry and red.
The Tonics (£20 each) are an interesting brown colour liquid, which I prefer to think of as chocolate sauce. They do not foam much. On the packaging it mentions massaging the product thoroughly through hair, and this proved a slight issue for me. Even thought I use a bigger blob than with my normal shampoo I find these difficult to distribute, I tried reapplying some water but I felt like me hair was almost clumping together. It is workable but it does take some time.
The conditioner, Elixier Blossom (£20) is a cream colour with a medium consistency. It does not feel heavy but is moisturising and detangles quite well.

I only used the CORE shampoo a few times before giving it to someone else as it was for normal to oily hair and scalp, which is not my hair type. So my results review is based on the products I bought, Pulse Tonic (for normal/dry hair) and Elixir Blossom.

There are massive benefits to these products, they do not dry or make my scalp itch, nor break out my skin on my hairline or jawline (something I often get with other brands). They make my hair feel soft and look very shiny, perhaps one of the biggest benefits I have noticed is that my hair is not frizzy, even when I have got caught in the rain.
However the downsides for me is the time it takes to wash my hair, this has more than doubled and as I wash my hair every evening and have little time as it is this is a big negative for me, my other issue is that my hair looks more weight down than normal.
Pulse Tonic Ingredients:
Elixir Blossom ingredients:
Core Tonics ingredients:
I’m undecided at this point as to whether these will be re-buys for me.

I bought these from who also stock brands like Ellis Faas, Julie Hewett and Kevyn Aucoin (they ship internationally).
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