Thursday, 30 January 2014

Nars One Night Stand Cheek Palette!

In October, the Nars One Night Stand Cheek Palette was released and sold at Space NK. The limited stock only lasted a few a days - fortunately I managed to grab one before they were gone.

Unfortunately, the limited stock meant that many people missed out, because Space NK didn't have any plans to restock. However, browsing the Nars website this afternoon, I spotted that it was back!

I don't have swatches of the palette, because I wanted to put this up as quickly as possible, as I'm not sure how quickly it will disappear. All I have to say is that this is definitely worth grabbing while you can. My favourite shades in the palette are: 'Deep Throat', 'Laguna' and (of course) the cult favourite 'Orgasm'.

The palette is £45 here.

Thanks for reading.
Bee x

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Building my Pro Kit!

If you know me, you'd know that I've wanted to become a Freelance Makeup Artist for a few years now. Unfortunately, makeup is extremely expensive, so I have to buy things gradually - when I can afford them. Slowly but surely, I am getting there!

Foundation palettes are pretty hard to come by in the UK, for a good price atleast. I've always had my eye on the Graftobian HD Glamour Creme palettes, but they're not cheap at all in the UK (£90+). However, browsing through google for more affordable options, I came across Camera Ready Cosmetics, which is a company based in America. They have stock some amazing professional brands, such as Graftobian, Kryolan, Ben Nye, Sugarpill, RCMA, etc. I couldn't believe my eyes when I spotted the Graftobian foundation palettes for £35.58 (Normally £45.25 on their site)!

Immediately I snapped up the Warm and Cool palettes - there is also a Neutral option. Browsing the site, I also found a few other things I needed at some great prices.

On with the haul!

Graftobian HD Glamour Creme Palettes - Currently £35.65 / $58.99
"Graftobian HD Cremes have been used and loved by Pro Makeup Artists since 2005 when they were first introduced. The satin smooth feel and blend-ability of the product paired with its high level of pigmentation is unique in the industry where you typically get one or the other. From time to time, as has always been the case with this Graftobian HD formula, you will see pigment swirls or dots of color on the surface of a new foundation dish or palette. Simply ignore these dots as they will disappear forever with one swipe of your brush or sponge and you will then be able to use this fabulous foundation on your clients with stunningly flawless results."

Left is the Cool Palette (pink tones) and Right is the Warm Palette (yellow tones).
As you can see on the images, the product does sweat, as they are cream. This doesn't affect the actual product.

I've only used this once so far, so i'll do a detailed review when I've used it more!
So far, I've found that the foundations are nice and creamy, with good coverage. I also love the colour selections.

Graftobian Spatula - £3.92 / $6.49
Kit essentials really! They look like great quality items.

Duo Eyelash Adhesive - £4.22 / $6.99
Never tried Duo before, but I've heard great reviews!

I'm really happy with the products I've received, and with the experience of purchasing from Camera Ready Cosmetics. Would definitely recommend to anyone looking to build a kit. 

Thanks for reading.
Bee x

Battle of the: Face Primers!

Today's post is going to be covering the topic of face primers. For me, a primer isn't something that I use on a daily basis. I tend to use them when going out at night, or if I know that I'm going to be wearing makeup all day long.

In the last year, my skin has changed from being dry, to very oily, which means that I've had to completely rethink my base makeup routine to make it last on my skin. I've tried many primers, but I am still yet to find my holy grail (though I doubt the perfect primer for me would even exist!).

The primers that I have been trying out over the last few months are: MAC's Matte Creme, Hourglass' Veil Primer, Smashbox's Colour Correcting Photo Finish Primer (Purple tone), and Maybelline's Baby Skin. All of these primers have that silicone-slip feeling, which is just my personal preference. I like primers that make my foundation glide on smoothly and last all day.

MAC Matte - £15
This primer is the thickest of the four, which takes more work to blend. I also have to be careful when applying the product, as it is pretty easy to apply a thick layer. If used correctly, it feels great on the skin - slightly heavier than other primers, but still nice. It does what it says on the packaging, it is definitely mattifying when applied, though I can't say that it keeps my skin matte all day (no primer can so far). 
Overall, I'd say that this primer would be best for someone with skin texture issues. It is great for filling in pores and light acne scarring!
Rating: 3.5/5

I have the sample size of this product, which I received with the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette. In the bottle, the product is a translucent white, but blends in completely clear on the skin. While it still feels like silicone, it is definitely thinner than others - I barely have to use any product at all! It feels great on the skin, foundation goes on beautifully over it, and wears well. So far this is my favourite of these four primers, but I'm not sure I can justify the price for the full size.
Rating: 4.5/5

I picked this up in Boots for £12.50 on clearance, which makes me wonder if this shade is being discontinued. I like this primer, but not for the colour correcting aspect. I don't really find that the tint makes a difference to how my skin looks, especially after foundation. It's a good smoothing product, but I wouldn't recommend it if you're looking for a good oil controlling primer. It feels thicker than the Hourglass primer, but thinner than MAC's.
Rating: 3/5

Last but not least, is the cheapest of the lot. I'd compare this primer to MAC's. To me, they are almost identical! MAC's is possibly slightly more mattifying, but they feel very similar in texture. I wouldn't call this a lightweight primer like the packaging suggests, but it does help with makeup application. Definitely worth it for the price!
Rating: 4/5

If you have any suggestions for good primers, please leave me a comment!

Bee x

Friday, 10 January 2014

Another neutral palette?! Smashbox Full Exposure Palette

I know I don't need any more neutral eyeshadow palettes, but they just seem to lure me in every time! My newest addition is the Full Exposure palette from Smashbox - a brand which I (surprisingly) have not ventured into until now.

I don't have too much to say about the packaging, it's nice and simple - the text on the front is holographic, and the packaging itself is cardboard, and slightly bulky. Regardless, it does feel quite sturdy; I often travel with larger palettes and have yet to break one! Touch wood...

I love how the colours are laid out in the palette, warm shades on the left, cooler tones on the right, and different finishes on each row. The top row of shadows all contain very small specks of glitter, except for the middle shade which is a frost finish. The bottom row are all matte shadows.

Top row (please excuse my blindingly fair skin!)

The shimmer shades aren't the most pigmented eyeshadows, but they all have a good texture, and have a consistent colour pay off. I've noticed that these shades apply best with fingers, as a brush seems to cause the glitter to fall out.

Bottom row

The matte shades definitely impress me, I love the shade selection, particularly the cooler shades. They aren't super creamy like some shadows (Urban Decay as an example) but they aren't chalky either.

Along with this palette, comes a double ended brush, and their Full Exposure mascara. The brush has a blending side, which is extremely similar to a MAC 217. The flat end of the brush has 2 different sides, synthetic and natural hairs, which can be useful for different shadow textures. The mascara reminds me of Benefit's Bad Gal Lash; the brush is quite large, but it doesn't seem to do too much for my lashes.

Overall, I really do like this palette, mostly because of the shade selection. I can definitely see myself using the matte shades very regularly.

If you have this palette, please tell me what you think!
Thanks for reading. x

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Battle of the Mascaras!

Currently I've noticed that I have a lot of mascaras floating around my makeup bag, mostly from Christmas gift sets. I'm not one to stick to one particular mascara and repurchase it, simply because I haven't yet found my "perfect" mascara. My lashes are short and straight, therefore I look for mascaras that give me length, and hold a curl - without smudging or flaking!

So far, a few that I have enjoyed (though I wouldn't say they are my holy grail) are YSL's Babydoll Mascara, Maybelline's The Falsies & The Rocket (Both waterproof), and L'oreal's Million Lashes Mascara.

Mascaras that I dislike: Benefit's They're real, Revlon's Grow Luscious, Maybelline's Illegal Lengths, YSL Shocking Mascara.

Here are some mini reviews of the mascaras that I am currently testing out!

Claims to lengthen, thicken, separate, lift, curl, and volumize by up to 345% after two coats.
345%?! I definitely don't think that it does that much, but it is a decent mascara. I still have to use eyelash curlers, but it does hold the curl for most of the day, even though it is not a waterproof mascara. The one thing that I do not like about this mascara is the brush - it's plastic bristles are so sharp, and if you're like me and you often poke yourself in the eye... ouch!
Rated: 3.5/5

Unique dual-sided brush enhances lash volume while a “Black Diamond” shade dresses lashes in a deep and glamorous intensity. Eyelashes are enhanced from the ends to the tips, revealing a fuller, dramatic eye makeup look.
I love the brush on this one, it's a fibre brush, with a tapered end - the brush kind of resembles a Christmas tree! This mascara holds a curl, and lengthens well. I'm not sure I notice a difference from the "Black Diamond" shade, but that's not what I was looking for in a mascara.
Rated: 4/5

False Lash Effect's biggest brush ever doubles lash size appearance vs. bare lashes.
I've always liked the False Lash Effect mascaras, specifically False Lash Effect Fusion (the purple tube). I don't enjoy this one as much as the "Fusion" version, it doesn't seem to lengthen or separate as much. However, I enjoy this mascara as it's a nice alternative on more natural makeup days, as it is not as harsh as black, but still darkens my lashes and makes them stand out. This mascara also holds a curl, as most waterproof mascaras do.
Rated: 3/5

My top pick out of these is definitely the Lancôme mascara, but I would like a mascara with more length. If you have any suggestions please leave them in a comment, I'd love to try something new! 

What is your favourite mascara?

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