Sunday, 30 August 2015

Lush 'Damaged' Hot Oil Treatment | Review

I am always on the look out for products to help keep my hair in good condition.
I don't get it cut even nearly as much as I should so I try and keep it as healthy as I can in every other way (I know, it's not the same but shhhhh!)

Treatments, masks and leave in conditioners are important in my hair care routine and so when I saw this from Lush a few weeks back, I picked it up without a second thought.

This is one of their new hot oil treatments which were launched with the Oxford Street store.
I picked up 'Damaged' which has vanilla and avocado oil and is supposed to really nourish dry, damaged hair.

There are 3 different varieties available; Tangled, Kinky and Damaged which are all catered towards different hair types and needs so there's something for everyone.
These are a similar concept to those hot chocolate on a spoon things which you melt in hot water and stir with the spoon. An all in one job sort of thing.
I thought this was a really good idea because it saves on packaging and space and is generally just more eco-friendly I'd say!

To whip this up, you just need a mug or a container and some hot water.
The instructions suggest adding a little water at a time and when I made mine it took about half a mug to get it to the consistency that I wanted which was like whipped cream.

I have very, very long hair so I used all of it in one go and it was just about enough to coat it all in a nice thick layer but if you have shorter hair then you could maybe cut it in half and save half for another treatment.
Or, the lady who I spoke to in the store suggested that you could leave it in the fridge once it's all mixed up for about a week if you don't use it all in one go.

You apply this to dry hair before shampoo and leave for 20 minutes although I always leave treatments for as long as possible so I had a bath, chucked my hair into a top knot and left it in for about 45 minutes to really work into the hair.
I did find that when I came to wash it out it had hardened a bit but as soon as I got the water and shampoo in there it was fine and it washed out so easily.

Sweet niblets and mother of all things holy, THIS STUFF LEFT MY HAIR FEELING LIKE FREAKING SILK.
It's so manageable and sleek and just feels and looks healthier after only one use.

They are priced at £6.50 which for a one use product for me is a little pricey, but if you have less hair than me which most people do then you can definitely get more than one use out of these, making them a bit more economical.
That being said, I would absolutely buy this again because my hair has never felt this soft and beautiful.

Some great news to end the post with...
These are now available in all Lush store, not exclusively the Oxford Street store anymore so they are super easy to get your hands on and I would definitely recommend picking one up.

What's your favourite hair treatment?
Have you tried any of the Lush hot oil treatments?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Book Corner: Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe by Jenny Colgan

Sometimes you just need a book which is lighthearted and feel-good and Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe is exactly that.

After my last book review of Me Before You by Jo-Jo Moyes I decided to move onto something a little more easy-going which wasn't going to affect my life forever; if you haven't read my review on that then you can read it here.

Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe is a story about a woman named Issy whose one passion in life is baking.
I immediately connected with the idea of this as I myself have a deep love for baking and an obsession with cupcakes and I hope to one day open up a baking business myself!

This is just a really lovely read. The characters are easy to connect with and the story is easy to follow and there are real-lifey moments which you can really relate to which is nice.
I really, really loved the emphasis on the close bond between Issy and her grandfather, making this a heartwarming story which just filled me with joy during every conversation between them.

What I really, really loved about this though is that each chapter starts off with one of Issy's recipes which are written is though they've been passed down and it's just lovely. They're also quite good recipes too so I want to give them a go!

I love the way that Colgan writes, also. It's just so easy to read and you don't have to put too much thought into it which was particularly great for someone like me who picked this up to relax before going to sleep after work.

And, I know you're not supposed to judge a book by its cover and all that Jazz but just look at it.
It looks beautiful standing on my bookshelf and even the tiny details on the pages are just so beautifully executed that it's one of the most beautiful books I own.

I'd definitely recommend giving this a go if you're looking for an easy read which will make you smile but not take over your life in any way.

Have you read any of Jenny Colgan's books?
What's your favourite?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Lush Oxford Street Exclusives | Intergalactic Bath Ballistic

I had planned to do a Lush Oxford Street haul of all of the amazing things that I picked up a few weeks ago but I thought it might be nice instead to do individual posts for each of the items and make a little series out of it!

First up is probably the best bath ballistic Lush have ever created in my opinion; Intergalactic.

This bright blue bath bomb contains peppermint oil, cedarwood oil, grapefruit oil and popping candy and let's be honest, any bath bomb which has popping candy in it is a winner.

In it's bomb form I couldn't really identify any of the main scents individually, to me it just smells really fresh and light.

As soon as you drop this into your bath, swirls of bright blue shoot out through the water and very quickly you are left with incredible, deep blue bath water. It's stunning. 

Then as the outer layer fizzes away it reveals streaks of yellow, white and bright pink which swirl through the blue and waves of shimmering gold flow through the water which make it look as though you really are floating in your own galaxy.

The popping candy in this really adds to the effect and I think that this is just as much about the visual as it is the scent.

When it's all dissolved and dispersed throughout the water, you can really pick up on the peppermint and the grapefruit which are both really uplifting and almost cooling on the skin once you've finished in the bath.
The gold particles also leave you with a beautiful shimmer which I love, but if you're not into glitter then it definitely won't be a bonus for you.
(It doesn't leave a mess in the bath though and washes away really easily for fuss free cleaning!)

Not only is this a really uplifting and soothing bath to soak in, I spent the whole time swishing my hands through the vividly blue water in amazement like a child. It's really an amazing experience, which is strange to say about a bath I suppose.

This is an exclusive product to the Lush store on Oxford street and retails at £3.50.
I think this is definitely the best bath bomb that I've ever used; from Lush or otherwise and I definitely recommend that you give it a try if you have access to the store.

Have you tried Intergalactic?

Keep an eye out for more of these posts coming soon!

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Tuesday, 16 June 2015


Some people are destined to wear certain scents, I think.

For years and years, I've been on the hunt for mine.
I've smelled it on hundreds of people in this time but I've never been able to find out what it was until now.
It was perfect; sat by the Thames having a drink while the sun was low in the sky and the woman on the table next to ours sprit
zed herself with Chloé and my life changed forever.

I, like most others am absolutely useless at describing scents but this is described as having notes of rose, honey and lychee which just sounds absolutely beautiful, right?

And that's exactly what it is. It's stunning. It's sweet and soft and for lack of a more professional word, a really smooth, sexy scent. Does that make sense?

It's really, really feminine and dries down to a beautiful sweet floral scent. 
My boyfriend likes it too, which is always a plus.

Perfect for daytime, it's light and fresh but also strong enough to be worn in the evening without being a really in your face, heavy scent.
It wears really, really well too. It's one of those scents that you can put on in the morning and inevitably forget about it all day but get home in the evening and still get hints of it when you swish your hair and I can still smell it on jackets days after having worn it.

On top of all of that, the bottle is gorgeous!

It's a high end fragrance so it's not cheap, coming in at £61.50 for 50ml. But it's unlike anything I've come across and I would absolutely recommend going to give this a sniff if you haven't already.
It's one I'll be wearing for years to come.

What's your signature scent?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Bourjois Rouge Edition Aqua Laque | Review

Much to my own surprise, I never tried any of the Velvet Edition lip lacquers from Bourjois because mattes and velvets are my absolute love when it comes to lip products but when I saw these I was instantly drawn to them, although I usually steer well away from glossy, shiny lip products because I have a lot of hair - a problem shared by many of us.

I picked up Feeling Reddy which is a bright, orange toned red and Rose on the Rocks which is a dusty, neutral toned pink.

I quite like the mirrored top to the packaging to indicate that they have a glossy finish. I think this would be really helpful if you were to store all of your lip products together as you could easily identify them.

They have a really soft, cushiony doe-foot applicator which is pretty standard with liquid lip products but I do think that they pick up a lot of product which, especially with the red shade can be a little dangerous and make for a messy application unless you're really careful.

The swatches above are quite concentrated, but when on the lips the colour is a lot more sheer and less intense for both shades, which you can almost see around the outside of the swatches themselves, but there is definitely a great amount of colour pay off for something so glossy.

They apply really nicely and just glide across the lips but you do have to be careful not to over apply the product otherwise it'll get very, very messy.
The consistency is not sticky at all; it just feels wet almost like you're putting water on your lips rather than a lipstick. They're quite cooling aswell which is a strange sensation but it's not unpleasant.

They don't 'set' into place, due to the texture of them which means that the wear time isn't great but I do find that if I wear them over a lipliner or a lip pencil or even a matte lipstick then they seem to almost grip to that and the colour lasts for a lot longer than if just worn alone.

Rose on the Rocks is a staple everyday lip product for me now. It just adds something extra to a minimal make up look and I really like layering it over nude lip liners to give a little sheen to the lips.
Feeling Reddy is a bit more out there obviously but it's an amazing shade to wear, especially against my pale skin with a bold liner look and not much else going on on the face.
This, over a deep red lip liner is absolutely stunning.

These retail at £8.99 which for me I feel is a bit pricey but they are really lovely. The shade range isn't amazing and a lot of the shades seem a bit too similar to justify buying them all but I do really recommend picking up one or two because they have a beautiful finish.

Have you tried any of the Aqua Laques?
What's your favourite Bourjois lip product?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Top 4 pink lips for Spring/Summer!

Spring is definitely upon us and with this sudden heatwave it seems that Summer is hot on it's heels!
I think it's time for me to put away my red lips, save them for those special occasions in which only a red will suffice and bring out the pinks!

I've picked out 4 of my favourite pinks to help take you through Spring and Summer feeling bright and confident!

Left to right:

1. Clinique Chubby stick in Whoppin' Watermelon - £17.99
These will always be a classic.
I love this because on the lips it's subtle and so easy to wear, perfect for the days where you're going for a more natural look.
It's super moisturising which is especially good in the heat because its important to keep your lips protected and it's perfect to just chuck in your bag when you're out the door in a hurry and super easy to apply - just twist the product up and slap it on with no worries of getting it all over your face!
It would be a good one to use if you've forgotten to take care of your lips in the sun and they're a bit dry and cracked, too!

2. Avon Ultra Bold Lipstick in Starburst Pink - £7.50

I wrote a post a while ago about breaking the stigma attached to Avon products and this is just another reason as to why Avon is literally rocking things in the make-up world!
I was sent this by a fellow blogger a while ago and fell in love with it and wore it non-stop throughout the summer last year.
It's a very opaque, bubblegum or as the name would suggest, Starburst pink with a satin finish on the lips.
The colour you see in the bullet is exactly what you get on the lips with this one!
It has an SPF of 15 so again, will protect your lips from the sun a little and this has a perfect sweet, fruity summer scent and lasts for ages on the lips due to the intense pigmentation.
It looks great on pale skin but I think it would look amazing with a tan, too.

3. Maybelline Baby Lips in Pink Punch - £2.99

Another classic, here.
This is another easy to wear, more moisturising one like the Chubby Stick.
It's a very baby pink with a fruity scent.
The colour pay-off isn't as intense which makes it great again to just throw in your handbag and top up when and if you need to.
Super balmy and moisturising so even though the colour doesn't last too long on my lips the feeling that my lips are being hydrated sticks around for hours!

4. Maybelline Color Sensational Vivids in Hot Plum - £6.99

Last but not least is one of my favourite lipsticks of all time.
Maybelline really brought it with the Color Sensational Vivids collection and Hot Plum is the perfect bright summer pink!
The finish is beautiful; it dries to a silky matte finish but there's still some movement there and it doesn't feel drying or uncomfortable at all.
The colour is so intense and lasts a good few hours before needing to be topped up. When it does wear off, there's no nasty line of colour around the lips either, which I can't stand.
Best of all is that it's very blue toned which does wonders for making your teeth look whiter!

These are the pinks I'll be rocking this Spring/Summer?
What are your favourite pink lip products?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Max Factor Wild Shadow Pencil | Review

A few weeks ago my boyfriend surprised me after work with a few treats from Boots and these two Max Factor Wild Shadow Pencils were something he picked up for me.
Apart from it being a super cute thing to do, it's also a really good way for me to venture out of my comfort zone when it comes to make up and try new things.
I'd never seen these before, not even throughout the blogging world so I was really excited to try them.

They claim to be both a gel shadow and liner in one, which isn't something I've tried before so I was keen to see how they fared against other gel liners I have used.

The two colours are Savage Silver which is a grey with small glitter particles throughout, and Ice Fury which is a shimmery, baby blue.

As you can see, the glitter running through Savage Silver isn't overpowering or chunky, it just adds an extra dimension.

The texture of these is really interesting... I expected it to be a lot smoother than it actually is, perhaps a gel formula but it's definitely more of a creamy formula.
However, it glides on absolutely amazingly that it's unlike any cream stick I've seen before. There's no tugging or dragging at all which surprised me, given the glitter etc.

They blend out so incredibly easily, using either a finger or a fluffy brush and when blended around the edges, the silver shade almost looks like a different shade altogether making it look like you've put a lot more effort into creating a look than you actually have! I'm pretty lazy when it comes to eyeshadow sometimes so this is a huge plus for me.

My main concern given the texture was that this might crease on my lids, as most things do which is really frustrating!
But Savage Silver worn on it's own all over my lid lasted all day, through a shift at work and was still pretty much the same when I took it off as when I put it on. I think that's pretty darn impressive...

The only thing I'm not too keen on is the size of the pencil itself... it might just be me but I find it a little bit difficult to use as a liner with it being so chunky. That's something I can get over though!

I haven't had as much wear out of Ice Fury yet as I have Savage Silver, simply because very light blue is a shade which scares me a little, but I'll get there.

These retail at £5.99 in Boots or Superdrug and there is a really lovely variety of colours which I love and definitely want to try  more of, especially the greens.

Something I don't usually mention but I absolutely love with these products is the names of the shades.
'Vivacious Moss' and 'Fierce Lime' are just the coolest names!

Have you tried any of the Wild Shadow Pencils?
What's your favourite eyeshadow pencil?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Monday, 13 April 2015

Life is short... Eat more cake!

It may be disappointing to some of you, but this post actually isn't about cake.
Trust me, I could write about cake until the cows come home but not today.

We all have things which we worry about; money, jobs, studies, homework, relationships, where our lives are going, body image... the list goes on and I know that everyone is different.
Recently I've been letting all of my worries affect my everyday life and I almost felt like the world was moving around me and I was just going nowhere.

For a while, it really really got me down and made me miserable and it's so easy to just forget about what actually matters.
There are a hundred things that I have in my life right now which I am so, so grateful for and ultimately, they're more important... after all, life IS short.

I'm not going to list a hundred things but I am going to list a few to remind myself of all the good things, some simpler than others which make me happy.

1. I live in one of the most exciting cities in the world

2. Tom. He supports me in everything I choose to do and I do love him a lot.

3. I recently bought some coloured glasses which I have on display and everyday at about 7pm when the sun is setting it shines through them and makes a little rainbow

4. My best friend just had a surprise baby! I'm so happy for where her life is heading now and this new chapter

5. I'm happy that the days are longer and the sun is shining for loner

6. I have a job which enables me to earn enough to not worry about money all that much; something I'm very aware that not everyone has and am extremely grateful for

7. Ludovico Einaudi. I have a huge, huge love for Einaudi's music which isn't something many people know about me. Sometimes when I'm alone I'll just lay on my bed and listen to him for hours

8. I work in the evening a lot and on thejourney there I cross Putney Bridge and the view of London and the water always takes my breath away, especially at this time of year.
 I think I might start getting off of the bus and walking across it

9. Every morning I wake up to the sound of the same bird song outside my window. I often wonder if it's the same bird and it makes me happy to think that it might be

10. I adore the people I work with. My job isn't the best but I honestly think that the people I work with now will be my friends for the rest of my life... I've never felt like I fit in with a bunch of people more than I do these people

11. I'm planning on going on holiday next year which I haven't done since I was a child

12. I know that if I ever need advice, or someone to chat to at literally any hour of the day I can call my Mum. I love her more than she knows

13. Houmous is a thing. I can't quite explain my love for it, but I am thankful that it's a thing

14. We've been buying little bits of new furniture for our room and it looks really pretty and I love spending time in it

15. I've been taking better care of my skin lately and it's really thanking me for it

16. I have a whole network of people whom I love and who support me

17. I didn't eat all of the chocolate I got at Easter in one go which I'm proud of, but that now means that I have a stash of chocolate in my cupboard for when I want it! Super happy thing.

18. I live under a flight path and while some people might not enjoy it, I really like watching the planes and thinking about where they're going to or coming from and revel in the fact that we, as people can go pretty much wherever we want to and that amazes me

19. I turned 21 this year and I am a fully fledged adult now! This is both terrifying and very exciting!

20. I'm hoping to move out of where I'm living now and into a flat with Tom in the next year or so. I don't know when or where but the prospect is exciting and I can't wait

The fact that I could go on with this list shows just how many tiny little things there are to be thankful for every single day.
I know just how easy it is to look at the negatives because there are so many but just a little effort to look on the bright side can give you a whole new outlook

I'd love to hear about some of the things that make you happy every day and I hope that this makes you think about the positives in your own life!
I'm thinking of doing more of these kind of posts. I have a few in mind, would anyone be interested in seeing more of them?

P.s. the cushion in the photo is from Tesco and I am in love with it. I am also happy that there is cake in the world...

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x 

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Book Corner: Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

It's been an embarrassingly long time since I sat down and read anything which wasn't academic or because I needed to for some reason or another.

So I've been finding the time to start reading for myself again and tackling the pile of books which I've not yet read!
I thought it might be nice to share them with you too.

The first on my list to read was Me Before You, by JoJo Moyes.
I've never read anything by JoJo Moyes before so I'm not entirely sure what inclined me to pick it up all those weeks back but this is definitely one that will stay with me forever.

Something about the way that Moyes writes just had me hooked from the first few pages.
It focuses on two characters, Lou and Will and ultimately, how each of their lives changes the others.

Obviously I won't give away any spoilers for fear of ruining it for those of you who haven't read it and may want to, but somehow, this this has subtly and inexplicably changed my life.

It's a romantic story but not like one I've ever come across before.
Not your classic 'girl falls in love with guy who doesn't want her but somewhere along the line they both realise that they actually wanted each other all along' kind of affair at all.

It's funny, it's emotional and it's sad but it's more eye-opening in my opinion. Sure, the love-story is nice but it's more so about realisation and acceptance than just falling in love.

I would definitely recommend reading this, but I'd say to do so when you have a nice quiet weekend because this isn't a book which you will be able to put down and pick up again a few days later.
I found myself reading before bed, before work and while I was at work I wanted to be at home so I could keep reading because I was so immersed and actually involved with the story that I didn't want to stop.

In fact, it's so intense that by the time I'd finished it and went to pick up another book to start reading, I actually hesitated because I wasn't entirely sure if I was ready to move onto another.
I realise just how insane that sounds. I do.

Basically, this is just something that you NEED to read.
I urge you to just go and even read the first few pages and get hooked for yourself.

Thanks for reading,

P.s. I got over not being able to read another book and I'm working my way through something else so look out for a new Book Corner post soon!

Monday, 16 March 2015

Max Factor Excess Shimmer | Review

I've always been a powder eyeshadow kind of gal.
Cream eyeshadow products have never been my scene if you will, but I've recently been venturing into the world of cream eye products and I think I'm hooked.

Everyone talks about the Maybelline 24 hour colour tattoo things... you know the ones. But I was intrigued when I found that the Max Factor Excess Shimmer cream shadows existed!

I picked up the shade Copper but I have to just put it out there early on that this is not a copper shade in any sense of the word. For me, that's not a problem and it IS still beautiful but I think it's maybe a bit misleading.

Nevertheless, the name really doesn't affect how much I adore this eyeshadow.

The swatch on the right is just a swipe of the product and on the right I've blended it and sheered it out just a little. 

As you can see, the shade isn't copper but more of a champagne gold tone. I do see where they may be some orange tones to it but it's more gold than copper and s the name would suggest, this is a 'shimmer' but it's definitely not glittery.
The formulation is definitely softer and more mousse like than the coveted Maybelline shadows which is great as it makes it easier to work with on the eyes. It's incredibly easy to blend not only with a brush but on those days when you just want to get out of the door as quickly as possible, it's just as easy to apply it with your fingers and blend given that it's so soft and workable. That being said, it isn't sticky which I was a little scared of when I felt how soft the product was. It dries to what feels like powder on the lids and is really comfortable to wear.
You also only need a tiny, tiny amount of product to achieve a really beautiful finish and it lasts all day, so I think this 7g pot will last me for a long time.

I've mentioned before that I work in a kitchen.
I've worn this almost every day to work since I bought it and it just doesn't crease, even in the heat of the kitchen.
No creases! At all! Hurrah!

The list of pros goes on!

I love a product which I can use in multiple ways and this definitely ticks that box.
It works great on it's own, sheered out across the lid to just add a bit of something without being too obvious; this is how I wear it most days.
You can also build the colour up and use it all over the lid and work some matte brown shades into the crease and outer corner for a shimmery, brown smokey eye. This has been my eye look of choice lately if I'm feeling a bit fancy.
Or, you can use it as a base for other shadows.
I've been loving using it as a base for my Smashbox Full Exposure palette.
It makes the colours really stand out and it's great to use under the shimmery shades to soften them a bit and help blend them with ease; something I find difficult sometimes.

These retail at £7.99 in Boots and Superdrug which I think is a really good price for the quality. I'd definitely pay more for it!
There are 6 colours in the range; I'm not too fussed about the lighter shades but there is a bronze shade and a black which I think I'm going to pick up!

Have you tried the Max Factor Excess Shimmer pots?
What's your favourite cream eyeshadow?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

L'oreal Color Riche Exclusive Nudes | JLo and Julianne | Review

You know when you see something in a shop and you just have to have it?
I was in Boots recently with a friend with no intention of buying anything when I came across the L'oreal Exclusive Nudes collection and I was smitten.
Usually I would never buy two products from the same line at the same time in case I didn't like the formulation or the colour pay off or what not, but in this case I had to both Julianne's nude and JLo's nude because they were actually perfect. Just, perfect.

I don't know how I was so oblivious to them before because I know they're not brand new onto the market but somehow I missed them.

The idea behind the collection is that L'oreal have teamed up with a group of famous women, all of different skin tones and undertones etc to create a collection of nudes which are suited to everyone.

I'm not normally one for a nude lip but these really stood out to me and I chose Julianne's nude and JLo's nude; both quite different colours but both beautiful.

On the left; Julianne's nude
On the right; JLo's nude.

Julianne's nude, designed by Julianne Moore is suited to those with a pale complexion and is what I would describe as a peachy, pink mauve shade.
It is a really beautiful shade and definitely the kind of pink that I tend to sway towards... something that's suitable for everyday and isn't too obvious.

JLo's nude, designed obviously by Jennifer Lopez (but I've also seen this called Cheryl's nude too?) is much more of a classic nude in my opinion. It is a more browny nude but there are definite pink tones within it too which makes it very soft and easy to wear, especially on a paler skin like mine as often I can find very brown based nudes too dark and sometimes harsh against my complexion.
Although mine and JLo's skintones are worlds apart, I actually prefer this on my skin to Julianne's which is surprising.

The formulation of these is beautiful. They are buttery and smooth and glide onto the lips with ease.
The pigmentation is great, too. The swatches above are only one swipe which, for nude shades is a lot of colour payoff.
I find that they last about 3 or 4 hours on my lips before they start to wear off. I wore JLo's nude out for a meal and drinks on my 21st birthday and I didn't need to touch it up all evening so it passes that test!
Even when the colour has started to wear off though, the buttery softness is still there and still feels as though it's giving the lips moisture if not any colour which is still a plus for me!

I think the matte black packaging is sleek and the gold signatures make each one unique.
These retail at £6.99 and there are 6 shades in the collection altogether, each catering for different skintones and needs which I think is a great concept. It makes it a lot easier to choose which is best for you given the information on who designed each one!

I would definitely recommend taking a look at the Exclusive Nudes collection if you're looking for a nude lipstick as you're guaranteed to find one to suit you.

Have you tried any of the shades from this collection?
Which one do you think is your perfect shade?

Thanks for reading,

Thursday, 5 March 2015

YSL Shocking Mascara | Review

I've said many times before here on my blog that I have incredibly light, straight lashes which can test even the best mascaras.
I have found a few which win the battle against them but nothing has ever really stood out to me as being something which I could claim to be a staple in my make up collection.
That is, until I tried the Yves Saint Laurent 'Shocking' mascara.

This has done the rounds in the beauty community; on Youtube and on blogs but I'd avoided picking it up because it retails at £25 which for me was just far too much to justify spending on a mascara.
But I obviously caved and picked it up in Boots a few months back... it pained me but I don't regret it in the slightest.

Given that it is a mascara from YSL, one would expect the packaging to be beautiful and it definitely delivers.
 A stunning gold, mirrored tube with striking black font and the YSL logo looks and feels every bit as luxurious as you could hope for and it definitely stands out as something special in my make-up bag.

At first sight, the wand isn't anything to write home about but on closer inspection it's actually quite unique.
It's a fibre wand which I tend to prefer to plastic wands although I'm not all that picky.
But the bristles actually seem to point in all directions which can look a bit messy but it actually makes it very easy to catch every lash with wand and coat them all in product.
It seems to pick up a lot of product which actually did worry me a bit at first; not what I'd expected from a £25 product. However, somehow the product just seems to settle into the centre of the wand and is then evenly distributed throughout the lashes which is brilliant.
 The formulation of the mascara itself is definitely on the thicker, more dry side which is perfect as I find that thin, wet mascaras don't offer me a lot of hold or curl and anything that I do achieve simply falls down very soon after application.

What really makes it worth it though, is obviously how it performs and how it leaves my lashes looking.
In my opinion, I can't fault it at all on performance.


Obviously, the photo on the left is of my bare lashes and on the right is with two coats of the 'Shocking' mascara.

As you can see, it's given me an incredible amount of lift and curl and definitely a lot of length and definition.
I think it looks very, very natural also. Not like I've applied lashings of mascara to achieve a full lash look but like my lashes are just full and long and defined with minimal effort which I really love.
But what's most impressive I think is just how long these effects last for.
I struggle with keeping any curl or lift with my lashes.
I work in a kitchen where it's obviously very hot and so usually any effect that mascara gives either flakes away or just falls within a few hours, but this mascara gives me this amount of curl all day.
Hours and hours on end in a boiling hot kitchen and when I leave, my lashes look just as good as they did when I applied the mascara.
That's a definite winning property for me.

I do however, have one minor issue with this product.
It has quite a strong rose scent which I just don't understand.
It's pleasant and all, but I will just never understand why one would need scented products for their eyelashes?!
I just don't get it.

Nevertheless, I simply adore the YSL 'Shocking' mascara and as expensive it is for a mascara, I see myself continuing to repurchase it time and time again.
Besides, if I use my Boots points it doesn't even really count, does it?!

Have you tried the 'Shocking' mascara?
What's your favourite YSL product?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x

Friday, 16 January 2015

Soap and Glory Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Crayons | Review

I'm back! It's been a while, even since my update post in which I promised I'd actually come back but I'm here with my first post of 2015, ready for all of you who've stuck around in my absence!

I'm going to ease myself back into this whole blogging thing with a review on quite simply, some of the best lip products I think I've ever used; the Soap and Glory Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Crayons.

If you're one of us who enjoys wearing make up on a daily basis for whatever reason then I'm sure you've come across those days where you just can't be bothered with the faff of applying a lipstick and committing to reapplying it every few hours all day but at the same time you're not really feeling a completely bare lip.
I think we've all been there once or twice; at least!

That's where lip crayons, balm sticks, balm crayons or whatever else they may be called come into play, and these are by far my favourite of their kind.

I have three of the five available shades; Raplumzel, Bashful and Fuchsia-istic.





Although they look quite highly pigmented in the tube, when swatched on the skin or on the lips they provide quite a sheer wash of colour but there is still a beautiful amount of pigment within that which makes them really easy to wear.
They each all have a slight shimmer or glitter running through them which doesn't transfer visibly onto the lips, but it works to give them an extra 'glossy' dimension.

L-R; Raplumzel, Bashful, Fuchsia-ristic.

'Raplumzel' is a deep, berry toned purpley red shade which has seen me through these winter months perfectly on those days where a red lip just won't work for me. It give you the look of a juicy, berry stain like perhaps you've just eaten a few too many strawberries.

Bashful is a light almost baby pink in the tube but on the lips it shows up a bit darker and bit more natural; what I'd describe as a pink nude. This is perfect when you want a barely there shade on the lips but something that is still visible.

Finally, Fuchsia-ristic is the best example of how the shades differ on the lips to how they appear in the tube.
In the tube this is a very bright, neon orange/coral shade but when swatched as you can see, is a much more muted coral shade which is a lot less scary than it seems!

All of the shades have an incredibly glossy finish but without that horrid sticky feeling of a lipgloss. As a girl with very long hair I can safely say that lipgloss and I are not the best of friends, especially on windier days but these glosss crayons mean that I don't have to miss out on the finish of a lipgloss.

They're super comfortable on the lips which is great for me too because I'm one to constantly rub my lips together if I'm very aware of something on my lips which just makes everything wear off far too quickly. With these that isn't an issue for me as they're comfortable to wear.

Like many other lip products, these Sexy Mother Pucker gloss crayons do have a sweet scent which I myself really like but it's in no way overpowering so if you're not into scented make up products which is totally understandable (side note, I recently bought a mascara which has a floral scent... WHY?! Who needs that?!) then it's not unbearable.

The wear-time with these isn't the best but that's to expected with such a glossy finish with any lip product I'd say.
Raplumzel definitely wears the best on me as it leaves the effect of a stain on the lips as it wears away.
The other two aren't so great but the twist-up style of the tube and the fact that they are so sheer in pigment means that touching them up on the go is no problem at all and there's no need for a mirror and none of the faff!

These retail at £8 in Boots which I do think is a little bit steep for a lip crayon but I think that the quality JUST about justifies the price of them.
I've got my eyes on the shade 'Nudist' next...

Have you tried any of the Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Crayons?
Which is your favourite shade?

Thanks for reading,
Kirsten x