Sunday, 27 July 2014

Sweet Cecily's Lipbalm* | Review

I am an absolute lip balm addict.
If I'm not carrying one with me in my bag or in my pocket then I genuinely freak out a little bit and feel the urge to buy one even though I know I've got more than enough waiting for me at home.
So when a little package arrived at my door containing 3 flavoured lip balms from Sweet Cecily's, well you can imagine my excitement!

Sweet Cecily's is a Yorkshire based brand which specialises in natural skincare products.
I really love the ethics of the brand. All of their products are handmade and free from any 'parabens, petrochemicals, harmful preservatives and SLS' and they use materials and packaging which is widely recyclable.
I love this, because I'll admit that I could do a lot more to help the environment and save the planet etc so it's good to know that the products I use go some way towards doing so, even if I'm a bad human and don't myself. 

They do all sorts of beautiful looking products but as I said, I was sent three of their flavoured lip balms.
I was sent Espresso Martini which is a new flavour being released soon and two of their best sellers; Pina Colada and Mojito.
As I'm at home for a few weeks for the summer I thought I'd give one to my Mum to try out and tell me her thoughts so that you have a better insight into just how good they are, even though it was really hard to let one go because they all look and smell amazing.
 She chose the Pina Colada one! 


Firstly, I love the cute little tin and the patterned stickers. I think they look really dainty and are the perfect size to throw in your make up bag or your handbag.
All three of the balms are set quite hard in the tin, but they are really easy to soften up with your finger.
What I really like is that they aren't so soft that you have to be careful that when you touch them your finger doesn't sink in and you end up with product all over your finger and under your nails (I'm looking at you, Vaseline).
But obviously, and probably more importantly, they smell incredible! 


Espresso Martini Lip Balm

I've never tried a coffee scented lip balm before so I was surprised to see this in the package.
 I wasn't expecting to like this as much as I do, I'll admit.
Rather than being a sickly sweet coffee scent, this almost has a subtle bitterness to it which means it isn't too much for the lips.
It also has chocolately notes to it and let's be honest, who doesn't want that?!
On the lips this is really, really soft and buttery. I also like that once it's on the lips you can't really tell that it's there, until you rub them together and feel how soft it is again. I
t tastes amazing too.
I actually think this is my favourite of the three. 


Mojito Lip Balm

I am a huge lover of mint so I was excited to try this one.
It's really, really fresh with the hint of lime and the heavy mint going on which is lovely, especially while the weather is as hot as it is because this is really refreshing.
Again, it's not too sweet!
This one is a little softer than the Espresso one in my opinion but it's still the perfect consistency - nothing under your nails after using it! 



Pina Colada Lip Balm - My Mum's thoughts!

"I don't usually use lip balm because I hate the greasy feeling that it leaves on my lips so I just don't use it but this doesn't have that feeling at all!
As soon as you open the lid you can smell it which is amazing because it smells lovely."
I then asked her if she'd buy it again and her reply was simply "Oh God yeah, definitely!"

You can buy these on the Sweet Cecily's website - http://www.sweetcecilys.com and they retail at £2.95 each for a 10ml tin.
I think that's great considering the fact that they're hand made and completely free of any nasties!
There are a few other flavours too, like Strawberries and Cream, Banoffie and Earl Grey!
 Don't those sound incredible?!
I really recommend you go and check out the website because the products all look amazing and they're really affordable.

You can find Sweet Cecily's on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @sweetcecilys or using the hashtag #sweetcecilys.

I hope you enjoyed reading my Mum's thoughts in this post, as well as mine! Something a little different!

Go and check out the website and all that jazz!
 If you do, let me know which products you think look most exciting!

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Thursday, 24 July 2014

The Liebster Award!

So, the lovely Amy from Little Love Heart and Elizzibeth from Elizzibeth27 have both nominated me for the Liebster Award!

Like a lot of other bloggers, I wasn't too sure what this even was up until very recently when I saw blogs that I follow posting about it but I've really enjoyed reading their answers and I'm looking forward to doing it myself!

The rules are:
Thank the blogger who nominated you
Answer the questions set for you
Come up with your own set of questions for your nominees to answer
Nominate 11 other bloggers with under 200 followers each and let them know about the award

So, thank you for thinking of me girlies!
Let's go!
Sidenote: I was nominated twice so I have two sets of questions to answer! Eeeeeep.

Firstly, the questions set by Amy!

1. Top 3 drugstore make up brands?I love Rimmel, L'oreal and Soap and Glory.

2. Snow or sunshine?I'm going to have to cheat and say both?! I love the sun but after a while I'm so ready for snow and cold weather.

3. Do you prefer to go casual or dressed up when shopping?There is an ongoing joke between my boyfriend and I that I either look a bit scruffy or really formal; I have no inbetween so whenever I go out I always end up looking quite dressy and formal anyway without even meaning to!

4. If you won the lottery and you won millions, what would be the first thing you buy?Hmmm. I don't know. I have a little fear of spending money if I have any significant amount of it. BUT! Since I really wouldn't have to worry about it I'd buy a ticket to somewhere hot for a few weeks. And then obviously I'd spend some in duty free too! DUH!

5. If you had to choose ONE make up item to wear and only that one item everyday what would it be?I think either concealer or mascara because I have really dark circles under my eyes which need to be covered because noone wants to see that, but also I need mascara because without it I look like I have no eyelashes... I'll go mascara because it makes me feel a lot better about my whole look!

6. Favourite place to eat out?I love Nandos. Always Nandos.

7. Lipstick or lipgloss?Lipstick. Lipgloss and my long hair just don't get on when there's any kind of breeze.

8. Who is your favourite blogger?Just one?! I love Louise from Sprinkle of Glitter because her posts always inspire me to be a better person and make me really look at life in a different way.

9. What inspired you to start a blog?None of my friends were ever really into make up and beauty like I have become, but when I went to university and lived with a girl who loved to talk about it and I finally had someone to talk to about it, I realised that I wanted to talk about it more and talk to loads more people about something that I was really getting passionate about. I made a blog back in 2012 but I deleted it and started again with Just Kirsten!

10. Go to outfit?Black skirt, statement/bright top and a jacket.
Or a skater dress!

11. One thing you NEVER leave the house without?My phone.

Now onto Elizzibeth27's questions!

1. Where would you like to travel to and why?Obviously I'd like to go on holiday to somewhere exotic and sun myself etc. But lately I've been doing a lot of research into volunteering in Ghana with children so definitely Ghana. It's something I've always wanted to do.

2. What is your favourite beauty product?
Generally, it would be nail polish because I feel like that can really add to an outfit. But my favourite individual product of all time is Benefit They're Real mascara because... well I don't need to say why. You know.

3. What is the best achievement you've had since being a blogger?I think the best achievement for me is knowing that there are people who actually care about what I write in my little space on the internet. That's crazy to me.

4. Who is your favourite Youtuber?Grace from The Ugly Face of Beauty or The Saccone Joly family!
I can sit and watch them for hours and hours.

5. What is your inspiration for starting your blog?Like I said before, when I realised that talking to people about make up and beauty was something I really enjoyed doing, I decided that starting a blog would be a really good opportunity to do so. And so Just Kirsten was born.

6. What is your favorite blogger event that you've been to? If you haven't then which one would you like to go to?
I haven't attended any blogger events yet, but I'm going to the Bloggers Love Fashion Week which I'm SUPER excited for.
Are any of you going?

7. When did you decide to start your blog?
I originally started in around September 2012 but I started afresh in about February 2014 and I'm so glad I did.

8. What's the most difficult thing you've had to overcome whilst being a blogger?
I'd say initially, I felt like I constantly had to be buying new things to talk about which obviously wasn't going to work with a student's budget so definitely making myself understand that I can just work with what I've got and it will be fine for now.
Also timing and making time for blogging as well as being a student.
It's all worth it though.

9. If you had 24 hours to do all of your favourite things, what would be first?My favourite thing to do by far is spend time with all my family so I'd definitely just get them all together and spend some time with them first.

10. What is your favourite song of all time?Robbie Williams - Angels.
Criiiiiinge!

11. Who has been the most supportive whilst starting your blog?Definitely my boyfriend and my Mum.
My boyfriend is constantly giving me new ideas and asking how things are going which is lovely and my Mum told everyone she knows about my blog as soon as I told her about it because she thought it was a brilliant idea.
Love them!


Now it's my turn!
Here are my questions for my nominees:

1. What is your favourite thing about blogging so far?

2. If you could only wear make up from one brand for the rest of time, which would it be?

3. Bold eyes or a bold lip?

4. What is your favourite era for make up and fashion trends? (1990's, 1970's, 1920's etc?)

5. If you had to give up buying make up or clothes and accessories, which would it be?

6. What's your best beauty tip?

7. How long did you wait before telling your friends and family about your blog?

8. Where do you hope your blog will take you in the future?

9. What do you love most about yourself?

10. What do you do if you lack inspiration?

11. If you could get beauty advice from anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

I nominate:
www.tallysbeautyxo.wordpress.com
www.lissybeauty.wordpress.com
www.melissazia.blogspot.co.uk
www.happyprimpin.com
www.lipsandbubbles.blogspot.co.nz/
www.emyleyg.blogspot.co.uk/
www.dottedvelvet.blogspot.co.uk/
www.www.lefashionbeauty.com/
theteresanicole.com



(Sorry if any of you ladies have been nominated already!) 

Thank you again to Amy and Elizzibeth for nominating me!

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Monday, 21 July 2014

Rimmel London Glam'Eyes HD 5 Pan Eyeshadow | Review


Rimmel is one of my favourite brands of all time; they're always one that I can rely on when I need something that does what it says it's going to do and they're affordable.
BUT I've never tried any of their eye-shadows before which is crazy considering how much I love them as a brand! 

I saw one of these Glam'Eyes HD 5 Pan Eyeshadow palettes in Asda while I was wandering through the toiletries aisle and decided to give it a go! I liked it enough to pick up another one a few days later! 


HD 5 Pan Eyeshadow palette in 'Foggy Grey'

The first one I picked up was in the shade Foggy Grey which is a very neutral based palette. It contains a a shimmery white shade, a shimmery peachy champagne shade, a matte warm toned brown shade, a matte taupe brown shade and a matte black shade.
The shades themselves when swatched remind me of those in the naked basics palette (minus Foxy) only with different finishes and less pigmentation. I don't own the basics palette but I've swatched it and this immediately reminded me of it... you get the idea.


The pigmentation of these shadows isn't spectacular but you can definitely work them up to a stronger finish, but for everyday I think it's just enough although I would like some more pigmentation.
I've been using the taupe brown shade (the one in the middle of the palette) to fill in my eyebrows with on days when I haven't wanted to dig around in my make up bag for other things.
The peachy shade is a great highlighter for the brow-bone, inner corner and on the cheekbones if you're feeling lazy!
I was possibly most impressed with the black though, as it's really pigmented and a true black!
This is a whole neutral eye look in one little palette which is really handy.


HD 5 Pan Eyeshadow Palette in 'Golden Eye'

The second one I picked up is this one, in the shade Golden Eye which is a metallic palette. There is a silver shade, a steel grey shade, a gunmetal shade, a gold shade and a matte black.
This palette on the whole is a lot more pigmented than the first, and the colour is a lot more intense.
Unlike with the first one, I probably wouldn't use all 5 of these shades together on one look but I think it's great that they're all in one 'metallic' palette. 


I really love the gunmetal shade and I think it would look beautiful in a smokey eye to bring a little more to the look!
The light silver would look amazing in the inner corner to give an almost wet look and really open up the eyes!
Again, the black is super pigmented and I just like that there is a black in both because it's always handy to have a black shadow.


I did a little research into these eye-shadows for this post and I noticed that on the Boots website it states that they can be used wet or dry. I really love eyeshadows that can be used wet or dry because I feel like you can get so much more out of them in terms of texture and so I thought that this was a great touch!
Unfortunately, when I tried using them wet I didn't really see any amazing difference in pigmentation or texture at all which was a little disappointing. The colours are a little bolder but nothing too extreme and you can see in the swatches below, the black seemed to have lost the strong pigmentation that I was so impressed with to begin with so I think I'll just stick to using these dry! 

       

I quite like the packaging. It's compact and actually quite sturdy considering it's made out of plastic, although the pan containing the shadows themselves has popped out of one of them but that's easy enough to pop back in.
What I also really love about them is that they have a diagram on the back which numbers the shadows and shows you where to use them on the lid to create a full look with the palette, which is really helpful especially if you're not confident with which shadows to place in where etc.

You can find these in Boots and Superdrug and in most supermarkets in the little cosmetics section - I got mine in Asda and they retail at around £6 or £7 which I don't think is too bad considering you're getting a complete eye look with 5 shadows in one palette and you can use them in two different ways!
There are a few other colours in the range which look really lovely and I think I might just have to pick those up sneakily too!
I can't believe I waited so long to try these.

Have you tried Rimmel eyeshadows?
What's your favourite Rimmel product?
Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Friday, 18 July 2014

Brand Focus | Avon


Avon has been a popular brand within my family for as long as I can remember.
I think most of the women in my family have been Avon reps at one point or another and Avon make-up was the first make-up I ever wore back when I was around 13 and really had no idea what I was even doing so it's always been familiar to me.

But I feel like Avon has somewhat of a stigma attached to it.
There's always that assumption of the little old Avon lady (I think about the one from Edward Scissor Hands when I think hard enough about it) and some people definitely see it as a brand for older women or just something that's not as 'good' as the rest.

I use and have tried a lot of Avon products and so I thought I'd share some of my favourites because I think they're just as good as the rest!



True Colour Eyeshadow Duo in 'Healthy Glow' - £6.00

I love Avon's eyeshadow palettes. They do quads as well as duos but the only one I have in my collection right now is this duo in the shade 'healthy glow' which contains a shimmery off-white shade and a shimmery taupe brown shade.
The shadows themselves are really pigmented and buttery soft which makes them super easy to blend.
I love the duos because it's a really simple eye look in one handy palette.
The packaging is really sturdy, compact and sleek, with a really nice sized mirror in the lid which is always useful.
For £6 I think they are really great products. 


                           

Avon SuperShock Mascara - £8.50
This is one of my all time favourite mascaras. I used to wear this religiously when I was in secondary school and I still love it.
The wand is a huge plastic spikey thing which looks a bit scary but it's actually surprisingly easy to use and it really catches every lash.

This gives the lashes loads of length and volume which is something I sometimes struggle to find in one mascara. It separates the lashes and really defines them and makes them super duper black.
The packaging is a little bulky and big but other than that, this is brilliant.

Ultra Colour Lipstick in 'Red 2000' - £7.50

Avon's lipsticks are my second favourite products (coming second only to their base products which are amazing) because they have such a huge range of them in a huge variety of finishes and colours and they are all fairly affordable.

Red 2000 is a bright, classic, Hollywood red with a really moisturising, glossy finish.
I love a red lip so I fell in love with this immediately, not only for the colour but for the staying power too.
With such a glossy finish, I didn't expect much from the longevity but I can wear this out of an evening and only have to reapply it once which is brilliant.
I think the packaging looks quite sheek; I like that the top is clear so you can see the lipstick itself and I also really like the shade names(go and check out the website and have a look). 


Irresistibly Sexy Sultry Lip Pencil in 'Red Vixen' - £7.00

Sticking with lips, we have the newest edition to my collection. The Sultry Lip Pencils are almost like a liner/lipstick hybrid in that they have the staying power and a similar formulation, although they aren't drying at all.
The pigmentation of this is incredibly strong and you only need to apply the tiniest amount to get a really opaque finish.
Red Vixen is a very brown toned red, bordering on terracotta almost.
This stays on for hours and is really moisturising and doesn't cling to dry patches which is surprising given that it has a matte finish!
The only thing I don't like is that it isn't a twist up product which makes it a bit of a faff. 


Glimmerstick Eyeliner in 'Blackest Black' - £6.00

Remember I said I loved Avon's lip and base products? I LOVE their eyeliner's too. In fact, this is my all time favourite eyeliner which is really something considering the fact that I've been rocking bold liner since my early teens so I've tried a lot of eyeliner. 


I'm a fan of gel and liquid liners but this twist up pencil liner is great, not only for the waterline but for the upper lash-line too!
It's really easy to smudge if that's what you're going for, but it's just as good for creating bold, thick liner looks.
What I love best about this though, is that once it's on it will not move until you want it to. It stays put all day and still looks as black when you take it off as when you put it on.

The shade range is lovely; there are plums and greens and browns so there's something for every look and they're affordable.
I really love these and I'll use them forever and ever.
I always have a backup just in case I run out because I can't just run out and buy a new one!


Nail Experts Grow Potion

I have to apologise for this one because I didn't realise that they no longer stock this product when I planned this post, but they do sell similar things if you're at all interested in buying it! Sorry!

I have a lot of Avon polish (there is a special place in my heart for Avon's nail products)  but I'll save that for my nail polish collection posts which you should check out if you haven't already! I couldn't not share this with you though.

I used to be one of those kids who would bite their nails ALL THE TIME! I don't anymore, because the thought of it makes me feel sick (all those germs, ewwww) but all the years of biting definitely took it's toll on the condition of my nails.
They are brittle and they always snap if I can even get them to grow at all.
The only thing that I've found that actually helps them to grow quickly and improve the condition of them is Avon's Grow Potion. 

It's a pink gel which you apply using the doe-foot applicator onto the surface of the nail and then rub into the nail with your fingers.
I don't know what's in this that makes it work but my nails have never grown so quickly! I don't use this so often nowadays but it's always a nice thing to turn back to when my nails need a bit of TLC! 

Swatches


Healthy Glow Eyeshadow Duo


From left to right:
Red 2000 Ultra Colour Lipstick; Red Vixen Sultry Lip Pencil; Blackest Black Glimmerstick Eyeliner.

As a brand, I can't recommend Avon enough. They have a huge range of products which cover all bases I think; there's something for everyone. They have select ranges for more mature women and teens so they really do cater for all needs.
They are affordable and the quality of the products is brilliant and I'd even say it tops many products which are similarly priced in the drugstore or high street.
It's also a lot more accessible now; you can skip the visits from the Avon Lady and order online instead which is great!
I'll always go back to Avon if I need something I can really rely on. 

What are your views on Avon as a brand?
Do you like their products?
Which is your favourite?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten.

Thursday, 10 July 2014

Sinful Colors | Nail Polish Collection



Sinful Colors were quite talked about in the 'blogging world' a while ago but I was clearly very late to the party when it came to trying them!

I stood and looked at the stand in Boots on many occasions over the Christmas period but until a few months ago I hadn't ever actually bought any. 

I've now added 3 to my collection however, so I thought I'd share them with you!


'Rise and Shine' shade 940 is a dark green/teal colour in the bottle, however on my nails it pulls a lot more green.
I don't know what it is about green nail polish but I absolutely love it! I have one from Avon which I wore to death a few years ago and so I'm so glad I found this to add to the group.
On the bottle it says that this is a matte shade... now I'm not sure if that's a mis-print or if it's the wrong label but this is absolutely not a matte.
In the bottle you can see a definite blue/silver shimmer; it's subtle but it's definitely there.
I'm not too fussed that it's not a matte though, because I always wear a topcoat which leaves it shiny anyway!
Despite that little error, this is a beautiful colour which is bright enough for Summer but dark enough for Winter so it's an all rounder for me!


'24/7' shade 920 is my favourite nail polish right now! I've been wearing it non-stop for ages.
I don't think any photo will ever do it justice, but it is an acid bright, neon pink and it is stunning.
This has a really, really matte finish which I find can make applying it really hard - I always find matte shades dry too quickly so I have no time to work with it... is that just me?
It can be a little bit streaky but after a couple of coats and a top coat that's not noticeable and even if it is, it's such a bright colour that you can't really tell anyway!

I flippin' love this.


'Let's Talk' shade 926 is a deep but bright purple with a metallic finish.
I really love how this looks in the bottle, it reminds me of the galaxy or something.. it just looks a bit spacey to me.
It's really pretty on the nails too. It's not so metallic that it looks too shiny and tacky but it does have a lovely sheen to it which I really like.
I think this is going to be really nice in Autumn/Winter time as that's when I bring out the shimmery/metallic polish!

For £1.99 I can't recommend these polishes enough! The staying power is really good, with a base and top coat I can get about 5 days without any chipping.
The only down side to them is that they stain like no other nail polish I've ever used before! Seriously, they stain my nails terribly if I don't use a base coat with them, which sometimes I forget to do when I paint my nails... something I can't do anymore! Oops!

I really recommend checking these out if you haven't already. They're £1.99 so they won't break the bank and when I got them they were on a 3for2 deal so I got 3 for less than £4. Bargain!

Have you tried the Sinful Colors polishes?
Which is your favourite?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Saturday, 5 July 2014

Thierry Mugler | #AngelCandy*



I was recently contacted by a lovely lady called Barbara from Thierry Mugler who asked if I would like to take part in a challenge as part of Thierry Mugler's #AngelCandy campaign.

I obviously said yes and so they sent me a little package containing two beautiful, delicious meringues (thank you for those!) and a tiny bottle of the Angel fragrance and set me the challenge of creating a mood-board which depicts what Angel makes me feel; what sensations or emotions it evokes or what it reminds me of etc.

I thought that this was a really lovely idea!
Perfume is a really personal thing and I'm so excited to see all of the memories and feelings that people get all from the same scent.

I've completed my mood-board which I've posted on Instagram so if you want to go and check that out then I'll leave my Instagram at the end of the post. It was actually a lot more challenging than I thought it would be, so I thought I'd just write a little bit about the fragrance itself while I have all of these thoughts floating around my head.

Firstly, the bottle is adorable! Shaped like a star I think it's really unique and would look beautiful standing on a dressing table. I'm a real sucker for a beautiful perfume bottle.

The Angel fragrance itself really matches the bottle - it's so unique. I can honestly say that I've never smelled anything quite like this. It's not something that I'd usually go for because I'm one for really fruity, girly scents which I wouldn't say this was.
But! It's beautiful. It's dark and sultry but at the same time it's light and sweet and fresh. I'm not even sure how that works but Angel pulls it off perfectly.

The big question! What DOES it make me think? What does it make me feel?
Well, you'll obviously have to go and check out my mood-board to find out exactly, but what I didn't show there is just how much this evokes in my mind. It's not like anything I've smelled before but it has familiar tones and for me, this brings back so many memories and thoughts which is amazing.
I never thought that a perfume could really make me 'feel' anything, I'll admit... but this actually does. It's really quite something.

If you want to know more about Thierry Mugler or #angecandy or anything else, then be sure to go and check out their social media pages -
Facebook: 
https://www.facebook.com/ThierryMugler
Twitter: @Thierry_Mugler or https://twitter.com/Thierry_Mugler  

And of course, if you'd like to see my mood-board then pop over to my Instagram. My username is justkirstenn .
I haven't used my Instagram in years, but this has given me the kick up the bum I needed to get back into it!

If you do pop over, then let me know what you think!

I also really recommend that you go and have a sniff of Thierry Mugler Angel if you haven't already, because it's really, really lovely.

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x