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Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Operation Cover Up


Sadly, even after 23 years of experimenting with skincare (Ok, I wasn't doing this since I was a baby, maybe the past 10 years?!) I still haven't found the prevention for blemishes. Many brands have tried to find the coveted elixir that will prevent us from breaking out, but unfortunately this holy grail of skincare has yet to come to market - or at least one that works with my skin! So what this does mean however is that I've refined the products which I use to cover up said blemishes; here are my top three products!


For when your skin is a little bumpy, no major in your face blemishes but rather just an area of agro, you need a creamy concealer that gives plenty of coverage, but doesn't cake up. I usually find that my skin gets in this state when I'm stressed, and haven't used my Clarisonic enough! Drinking lots of water will help to flush the toxins out of your skin, but for a short term fix, try a concealer like the Clarins Instant Concealer. It's actually designed for the under-eye area, and while I love it for the use that it's intended for, I also find myself more often than not using it elsewhere to blend flawlessly any over little imperfections.

Skipping over to the other side of the picture, another Clarins product is my go-to for when there's a blemish thats rather more.... in your face. On your face. You know what I mean. Yes the texture of the  Clarins Concealer stick mean it is cakey by nature, but when a blemish desperately needs coverage, you need to bring out the big guns. Unlike many concealer sticks which I've tried in the past, the formula is very softly textured so you don't end up with splodges of different textured skin. Because it's so soft, you can also use it as an under-eye concealer too.

One of the most important steps when covering up blemishes, is to set the concealer. You might have created a flawless, blemish free base, but if it slides off a few hours later then all your hard work will go to waste! You don't want to add another layer, so choose a lightweight powder to set your makeup, such as the Antipodes Skin Brightening Finishing Powder. Swirl your biggest brush in the lid of the pot, then tap off the excess before swiping over your T-Zone, then use a smaller brush to apply directly over areas where you've covered up.

I hope these little tips help you - and while I am yet to find the perfect skincare for preventing blemishes, these tricks are my saviour to covering up imperfections. I'd love to know your tips too!


What are your tips for covering up?





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Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Brushes for every Budget


Lately my brush collection has exploded. I have more brushes than I could ever really need and I find myself reaching for budget brushes just as often as I do the more expensive ones. I have never really blogged about my beauty tools before (aside from my new mini series, Perfect Pairs!) so I thought I would share my favourite brushes; including some for every budget!


The Best of the Budget Brushes

Real Techniques 

I received the Real Techniques Buffing Brush as part of the core collection, and it was one of the first brush purchases that I made after I started my blog! It blends foundation in flawlessly; I use the brush to literally buff the product into my skin after I've applied it using another brush, and it creates a fabulous airbrush finish.

I also love the Real Techniques Contour Brush which came in the set for creating a defined, precise contour shade. It's perfect for picking up dark shades of bronzer and gives you lots of control over where you apply the product.

Recently, Real Techniques launched their Bold Metals collection which includes a flat contour brush, which to be honest I like just as much, but not more than the cheaper version!

Crown Brushes

Somehow I had it in my head that Crown Brushes were super expensive, but in reality they are very affordable and have some really great dupes for more expensive brushes. In the bottom of the picture you can see my bedraggled MAC 187 Duo Fibre brush sitting next to the pristine Crown Brushes Large Duo Fibre face brush. They are near identical, and I can barely tell the difference in the way that they apply foundation, the main difference would be that the Crown Brush is a little softer, the bristles are more delicate so it creates a slightly more sheer finish - perfect for applying tinted moisturiser.

Makeup Revolution

For brushes which require a slightly stiffer bristle, such as my slanted brow brush and highlighting brush, Makeup Revolution have some super options. All under £4, their brushes are super soft but also dense enough to pick up enough product where you need it. I use their contour brush for picking up cream blush from my Clinique chubby sticks, finding that it picks up the perfect amount of product.


Middle of the Range

Zoeva

The beauty bloggers favourite, and not just because they're beautiful but because they really are great brushes too! I went for the Rose Golden Luxury Set, unable to resist its beauty and I have to say I think it's great value for an 8 brush set. My favourites include the Silk Finish Foundation Brush which is similar to the Real Techniques buffing brush in that it creates a flawless finish, but I also apply it with this brush as well as buffing afterwards. It makes for a really speedy makeup application and blends fabulously!


The Best of the Blowout Brushes

Anastasia Beverley Hills

Bought on an absolute whim, yet I have yet to regret my purchase of the Anasasia Large Duo Brow Brush. The slanted end is so slim and skinny that you can create hair-like strokes with brow powder, and the spooley is stiff enough to groom out the most unruly of brows!

Sigma

I purchased the Sigma Tapered Highlighter brush to compliment my Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder, and find the shape of it so perfect for not just highlighting, but contouring too. The soft point gives you control over lightening certain areas of your face, while the fibres are dense enough to pick up enough powder for you to contour.

Sephora

There are a few brushes which I picked up during my haul which I have really enjoyed using as part of my daily routine. The Domed Stipling Brush is just like one mega buffer and foundation applier in one huge brush, it is so big that applying foundation takes just seconds, then you swirl it over your face to create a seamlessly blended finish. When I'm after a fuller coverage, I'll always use the Pro Flawless Airbrush which lets you build layers of product until you get the desired finish. My current favourite combo is this with the Rimmel 25 Hour Foundation.



Have you tried any of these brushes? Which are your favourites?



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Monday, 2 March 2015

February Favourites


Everyone's saying it, but I really can't believe it's March already! I'm barely getting my head around the fact that it's 2015! This month I had another trip to the U.S so there's a couple of products here from Sephora, as well as some old favourites which I've been loving using again. Some new launches too which have seen lots of hype, but so worth it in my opinion! Anyway, enough chit chat, here are my monthly favourites!
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Sunday, 1 March 2015

This Week I've Been... #7


As London Fashion Week drew to a close and normality resumed, this week has been all about settling back into my usual routine. Back to work with lots of planning to do ahead of our trip to SXSW, and a few lovely blogger events, plus an incredibly exciting project with Grazia and The Debrief!

This Week I've Been...

... Street-styling it at Somerset house! I'm the first one to shout out about how Fashion Week is not all about going to Somerset House to get papped for your street style, and as you can tell in the pic above, I came straight from the office but styled up my monochrome work outfit for a few pictures. Somerset House is such a beautiful setting, you always see so many bloggers and fashionistas getting great outfit snaps, and you can see my shots from Day 1 of LFW here, with more to come soon!

... Recharging my batteries (literally) at The Apartment. This year was the first that I paid a visit to The Apartment. A haven where bloggers can relax, recharge, get makeovers, eat and chat between shows during London Fashion Week. Set up in a beautiful apartment in Covent Garden, Abi (from Abi Marvel) works with lots of great brands to fill The Apartment with super goodies, such as ASOS beauty, Aspinal of London, Kurt Geiger, Reiss, Canon etc which bloggers can borrow to use of wear throughout fashion week. You can see more about my time in The Apartment on my Grazia video here.

... Filming behind the scenes blogger action with Grazia and The Debrief. I was invited to join an incredibly exciting project over London Fashion Week by the team at Seen.It (an app which lets you create and edit videos) to film 'What Bloggers Really Get Up To at Fashion Week' for a behind the scenes video for Grazia.com and The Debrief. You can see the videos and find out more in my post here!

... Getting glammed up in the Benefit Curl's Best Friend parlour! If you live in London then you absolutely must visit the new Benefit pop up in SoHo! I was invited to visit the parlour on their launch day to experience all that the parlour has to offer, including Curls, Cupcakes and Cocktails! Find out more about the #CurlsBestFriend parlour here.

... Embracing Blue with Illamasqua and Morgan Taylor. A colour which I haven't worn since I was 9 years old, and this week, not one but two brands launched a new collection based around the shade! Fuel PR invited a group of bloggers and friends to join them for an exclusive screening of the new Cinderella film at the Soho Hotel to celebrate the launch of the new nail polish range from Morgan Taylor. The film was fabulous, with us all in tears (of laughter or sadness!) and one which I highly recommend you see when it comes out in cinemas at the end of the month! 
Illamasqua launched their newest collection in the Ice Tank Studios and invited us all to try a blue lip or eye (both surprisingly flattering!) and I'm looking forward to trying out their newest collection!

What have you been up to this week?




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Saturday, 28 February 2015

Curls, Cupcakes & Cocktails at Benefit's Curl's Best Friend parlour!


Stepping into the Benefit Cosmetic's Curl's Best Friend parlour in SoHo is like stepping into a girly, 1950's beauty parlour, with a little bit of 'The Jetsons' type furniture mixed in for good measure! Complete with retro lime and strawberry tables, baby pink diner style sofas and pink and white floor tiles, there's no better place to enjoy a coffee or cocktail after a long day's shopping, but be quick! It's only here til the end of March.
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