Review – Peel Off Lip Stain

Review – Peel Off Lip Stain

Peel-off makeup is now officially a thing – Mind. Blown.

Nobody can call the makeup industry boring. With the constant creation of unique and quirky makeup products, something like this was bound to come around. Peel-off makeup is a trend that seems to be taking the beauty world by storm with many popular bloggers and youtubers trying out peel-off lip stains and eyebrow tints, whilst others are trying to make their own in DIY tutorials. So, unlike Gretchen Weiners with the word “fetch”, peel-off makeup has been made a thing. What a time to be alive.

So despite this trend being around for a while I was always skeptical to try it because, like many others out there, I was having nightmares about peeling my eyebrows/lips off in a DIY attempt gone wrong. There are several Asian brands that have introduced peel-off products like Etude House and their eyebrow tints, but for me it wasn’t worth the shipping price. So with a heavy heart, I decided to sit this one out. BUT imagine my surprise when I was browsing the makeup section of Topshop Oxford St to find some peel-off lip colours! They had the several colours of the Romantic Bear Long Lasting Lip Colours which is the brand I saw several bloggers try out. In my excitement, I put one of each colour into my basket and was halfway to the till before I realised that buying all of them was wholly unnecessary because I would probably only use them once in a blue moon. So I picked one colour – Cherry Red – which was the darkest of them all and would show the clearest results. I can’t quite remember how much I paid for it considering my student discount, but you can easily find these products on Amazon. The peel-off lip tint comes in a simple squeeze tube that has a net weight of 15g. This applicator is similar to the old-style lip glosses which had a lipstick shape and a hole in the middle to dispense product. The tint has a strong fruity smell that isn’t unpleasant and it’s consistency is very thick and gooey.

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Put the consistency and applicator type together and you’re in for a very difficult and MESSY application. Trying to get the goo to coat your lips evenly and within the lines is next to impossible. It’s like going back to pre-school and trying to colour in pictures with those awful wax crayons. So applying the tint to your lips is not the easiest task in the world. THEN you have to wait for it to dry and one thing you cannot, I repeat CANNOT do in this time is let your lips make contact – with ANYTHING. Not even each other. Because the goo goes really tacky and will stick to anything and make a huge mess. So I found myself having to sit around with my mouth wide open whilst the tint dried which wasn’t very convenient. It took about 20 minutes before it was fully dry and I could touch my lips. When dry it feels like a layer of plastic over your lips. Then comes the fun part: PEELING. It’s actually not that difficult to peel off, because it naturally starts to peel around the corners of the mouth. You just take the edge and pull it away from the lips. It’s better to do it slowly so that the tint comes off in one. It’s not painful at all and it’s pretty damn satisfying.

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Unfortunately, the end result was a bit anti-climatic.  Whilst there WAS a tint left on the lips, it was SUPER patchy. I noticed that the tint took better on the skin closer to the inside of the mouth aka the “wet part” whereas it wasn’t as pigmented along the outside of the lips. I tried putting a clear balm on top to see if it helped, but it didn’t really do much to camouflage the uneven distribution of pigmentation. On a good day in nice lighting someone could say it was an “ombré lip” which is popular especially in the Asian beauty market, but on a bad day someone would just tell you to re-do your lipstick.

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Overall, whilst it is a fun and novelty product which is great to try once as a laugh, I can’t really see these products becoming everyday essentials. They’re just too much hassle for the not-so-amazing results. But it was worth trying for sure.

Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

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The Low-down on Drugstore Glycolic Peels

The Low-down on Drugstore Glycolic Peels

Hi everyone! So I haven’t posted on here for a very long time. I know – I’m sorry. I’ve been focusing on building my beauty-dedicated Instagram page (if you haven’t yet, feel free to check it out @cosmeticaddictions) doing beauty posts and mini reviews. Insta-blogging is addictive apparently! But now I’ve moved into my new space for my Masters degree and I’m planning on getting back to “proper” blogging.

So a few months ago I was introduced to glycolic peels by a very good friend of mine (Preena if you’re reading this, I love you) and my whole skincare game changed. If you are unfamiliar with glycolic peels they are essentially chemical peels where the main component is glycolic acid. According to the internet: glycolic acid is derived from sugar cane and is a fruit acid which is part of the alpha hydroxyl family of natural ingredients. YAY FOR SCIENCE! But if you’re anything like me you’re probably muttering under your breath: “well that knowledge is useless to me – what does the damn thing actually do?” Well because I love you, I’ll tell you. It’s a two step process. Primarily the peel works to exfoliate the skin and remove any dull or dead skin without the need for any hard scrubbing with harsh and abrasive products like your traditional face scrub. The second benefit of the peel is that it penetrates deep into the skin to promote the regeneration of skin cells or “rejuvenation” if you want to be fancy about it. This is supposed to really help with any wrinkles, fine lines, uneven skin-tone and acne scarring. Don’t believe me? Ask Google – because that’s where I got all this information from.

So initially, the thought of putting any product that contained an “acid” that claimed to “peel” my face made my stomach feel funny. It just doesn’t sound like something a sane person would do right? But I kept getting told that it wasn’t as harsh as it sounded and that it would do wonders for my skin. I was promised clear, unblemished and super smooth skin as a result of taking the ultimate leap of faith. Eventually the temptation was too much to resist and I caved (to be fair, it was only a matter of time).

So I was recommended the Superdrug Naturally Radiant Glycolic Overnight Peel to begin with. According to the Superdrug website: Naturally Radiant Glycolic Overnight Peel is formulated with a unique energising complex infused with Kiwi Fruit and Mulberry Extracts to help revive skin’s radiance and even out skin tone. With Glycolic Acid, a powerful Alpha Hydroxy (AHA) and a Fruit Acid blend, the refreshing gel formula also refines and retexturises the skin’s surface, providing a brighter, more youthful complexion. It normally costs £5.99 but I got it on sale for £2.95 (victory dance) and it comes in a 30ml squeeze tube. The texture is a very watery gel, so be careful when squeezing it out because a lot can come out and it can go everywhere. The smell is similar to a mild air-freshener – ‘chemically fruity’ as I like to call it.

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I followed the instructions and applied it after my evening cleanse. I used a pea sized amount (although I have to admit I am prone to envisioning overly large peas when dispensing skincare products) all over my face and let it dry. It didn’t feel uncomfortable at all. I mean, I was expecting at least a tingle – maybe even a slight burning sensation, but it just felt like a serum. Then I went to sleep. When I woke up the next morning the first thing that I noticed was that my face was very oily. Like VERY oily. As in = if sebum could be an alternative to fossil fuels, I would be a bajillionaire just from that morning’s produce. Anyway, I went to go and wash my face using my Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser and lo and behold I DID notice a difference. My skin felt significantly smoother and the roughness around my nose that I haven’t been able to be rid of since I was 15 was COMPLETELY GONE. Also my skin just felt cleaner. I don’t know about you, but I can tell when my skin is feeling congested. I couldn’t believe how good my face felt, and that was just after one use! Skip forward a month and a half of me using it twice a week and the difference in my skin was clearly noticeable. My skin was no longer dull, it was much smoother, my acne scars were good as gone and my skin was generally a LOT clearer. I was very happy with the results.

Now a month ago, Nip + Fab went on sale in Superdrug and as I was browsing their products, I came across the Glycolic Fix Overnight Purifying Gel and I decided to try that to see how it compared to my Superdrug Naturally Radiant one. The brand’s website describes it as: A night-time clarifying treatment for dull and oily skin, this purifying gel contains glycolic and salicylic acid which combine to resurface and purify the skin by gently lifting away dead skin cells with a continuous deep pore cleansing action. By the morning skin will look and feel fresher and smoother and skin tone will improve over time. It also said: Glycolic acid: increases cell turnover to exfoliate the skin and helps fade discolouration – Salicylic acid: unclogs pores to help tackle black heads and reduce blemishes – Niacinamide: acts as an anti-inflammatory on the skin helping to reduce the production of sebum which causes large pores to develop and acne. It retails for £14.95 but I got it for just under £8 (half price sales are amazing), it also comes in a squeeze tube and you get 40ml of product. The gel consistency is similar to the Superdrug one but it isn’t as watery and if you look closely, you’ll see tiny white spheres running through the gel. The scent is a bit stronger in this product but it’s the same concept – chemically fruity.

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So I did the same process and waited to see the results. There were all the expected similarities: no discomfort upon application, a bucket-load of oil on my face in the morning and baby-butt smooth skin. The results were pretty much identical. There was only one major difference between the two. I noticed was that my skin felt a touch drier and tighter the morning after using the Nip + Fab glycolic peel than after using the Superdrug one which indicates that the first is more potent. This could be down to a higher percentage of Glycolic Acid or the added Salicylic Acid in the Nip + Fab peel. As a result I found myself only having to use it once a week or every five days to get the same results as using the Superdrug one twice a week. This means that I don’t go through product as quickly which is GREAT. However it did mean that I had to use a richer moisturiser the morning after using the Nip + Fab peel whereas with the Superdrug peel, I could just use my normal, everyday moisturiser.

So overall I would recommend both products. If you want to save money, then just get the Superdrug glycolic peel. You’ll go through product faster but you’re only spending a third of the price of the Nip + Fab to begin with. If you have money and you’re willing to splurge then go for the latter. The only thing I would say is that if you have really sensitive skin then I would suggest trying out the Superdrug peel first, because it’s not as strong as the Nip + Fab one – and the same goes if you have a lot of acne. Because I only get the odd spot now and then, I didn’t have to think about what a chemical peel could potentially do to aggravate any acne I had. However, if your skin is very dull and rough or you suffer from acne scarring then I would recommend in investing in the Nip + Fab peel just because it is more potent and could help clear up your problems faster. But overall, the end result is the same. Since being introduced to glycolic peels, I have had no reason to use a manual exfoliator (like scrubs etc) and my skin has all but thanked me for it. I also like using it to help lighten the dark skin I have on my elbows and knees. I’ve recently started using it on my stretch marks to see if it helped lighten them at all and I HAVE noticed a slight improvement.

Just a couple points before I end this post:

  • ALWAYS use SPF the day after using a peel because your skin is more sensitive the day after.
  • ALWAYS do a patch test on your arm before you try it on your face.
  • DON’T get it in your eyes – if you do, wash it out immediately.

Until next time loves,

Cephy xx

 

Review – Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet Lipsticks

Review – Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet Lipsticks

Hello everyone! I’m so sorry I’ve been away for so long. It’s currently exam season and with it being my final year of law school, the stress levels are pretty damn high. But I have a bit of a break until my next exam so I thought I’d sit down and write a blog post.

So recently Superdrug was having a 3 for 2 sale on all Bourjois Paris products and I thought it would be a great opportunity for me to pick up a few of their liquid lipsticks. The Rouge Edition Velvet lipsticks are NOT new releases. They’ve actually been around for a while and have a serious cult following in the UK bloggersphere (yes apparently this IS an actual term). The reason why I haven’t picked them up until recently was because none of the colours in the original release caught my fancy. Although there were like 8 shades in the initial release, they were mostly pinks and reds. Pink has never been a colour I reach for and the reds were just a tad too bright. However, the good news is that Bourjois have been extending the shade ranges and there is much larger variety of tones to pick from.

In the end I picked the colours: 12 Beau Brun, 14 Plum Plum Girl and 17 Cool Brown. Let me tell you now: NONE of the colours are what I expected them to be. I expected Beau Brun to be a neutral, dusky rose colour but it turned out to be a WAY more warm and pink. I expected Plum Plum Girl to be a deep violet colour but it’s actually quite a bit lighter – like a mid-toned berry shade. Cool Brown is the biggest deceiver of them all though. I expected this to be a light neutral brown-toned nude. It’s not. It’s EXTREMELY light (light enough that on it’s own it looks like concealer lips *shudders*) and not brown-toned in the slightest. It’s more of a neutral pink. But n top of a brown liner, this shade becomes a perfect nude shade on me. Despite the extremely misleading names, I ended up quite liking the shades. Everyone loves pleasant surprises. It has a simple doe-foot applicator.

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Now on to the actual formula. First thing that I noticed was that these have the most awful smell. I’m NOT particularly sensitive to smells, so for me to say that the smell is bad is pretty incriminating. The closest thing I can compare it to is the scent of stale play-dough. Like stuff that’s been left on a windowsill and has dried to  point where it’s rock solid and it gives off that weird smell of burnt plastic. So although you might not be able to relate to this SPECIFIC scent, what I’m essentially saying is that it’s pretty bad. It’s not the best when you’re applying it on your lips RIGHT UNDER your nose, but the good news is that once it sets you no longer smell it. Upon application, the formula is very very thick – almost moussey in texture. It’s very comfortable to wear throughout the day. It feels very smooth on the lips when you apply it and it sets to a nice matte finish. It doesn’t feel moisturising per-se, but it’s not drying on the lips AT ALL. It’s very comfortable to wear and it does seem to last quite well. I can wear this for about 5 hours before it starts to crack and fade on my lips, providing I don’t do any serious eating.

Here are swatches of the lipsticks when applied and when dried:

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However there are a few more downsides to these liquid lipsticks. One of these is that it takes FOREVER to dry. Like, literally forever. I had to wait around 45 minutes for Plum Plum Girl to dry on me before I felt like it was safe to put my mouth anywhere near anything. But this may relate to the fact that I had on two layers of Plum Plum Girl on. This relates to another downside. The level of pigmentation REALLY varies between the shades. Beau Brun is absolutely fine and the pigmentation is great and only requires one layer for full opacity. Cool Brown wasn’t AS pigmented but this may be to do with the fact that it is an extremely pale nude shade and the fact that my lips are already quite naturally pigmented. Plum Plum Girl is the WORST out of the three when it comes to pigmentation. One layer goes on quite patchy and still shows your natural lip colour, so another layer is needed to make the colour more opaque.

So overall, these are OKAY products. I personally do NOT believe that the hype about these liquid lipsticks is justified, but they’re not awful. I ended up liking the colours that I got so I’ll probably use them again. However, it’s unlikely that I will purchase any more shades.

Here’s a picture of me wearing Beau Brun:

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Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

Review – Primark PS Velvet Matte Lipstick Crayons

Review – Primark PS Velvet Matte Lipstick Crayons

Hello darlings! So a few weeks ago I was browsing the ‘gram and I came across a post on @ummbaby’s page of two lipliners and two lipstick crayons from Primark. It genuinely took a minute for that information to sink into my head…

I haven’t actually been into the beauty section of Primark in years and from what I remember they had some decent brushes and lashes, but their actual makeup was pretty non-descript and cheap looking. It looked more like the “play makeup” sets you can buy in toy shops for little girls. You know, the ones which consist of glittery petroleum jelly and coloured talcum powder in heart and flower shapes. So I never bought anything from the Primark beauty range then because none of it looked like it would be amazing (plus everything was always opened anyway). BUT after seeing this post, I did some research and HOLY CRAP – Primark have upped their makeup game. They now have a proper beauty range called P.S. Love and the collection of products they have to offer is quite extensive. And it looks SO much better. The packaging is quite sturdy and the general aesthetic is very reminiscent to brands you would find in the drugstore. And it’s ridiculously good value, as is expected by Primark. But anyway onto the actual review:

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Now there’s a very specific reason as to why I wanted to get the Velvet Matte Lipstick Crayons so badly. Basically, it was because I REALLY liked the MAC Velvetease Lip Pencils –  but I just couldn’t justify spending £17.50 for one. I just couldn’t do it. So I made it my personal mission to find a cheap alternative so I wouldn’t feel like I had totally missed out. So of COURSE I had to pick these up. I mean at £2 a pop, even if they ended up being absolutely awful, at least I hadn’t spent/wasted a huge amount of money. But you know what?

THEY’RE AMAZING.

Seriously guys, I fell in love with these lipsticks faster than I did with my boyfriend.

Firstly, they had a fairly good shade range. I saw about six different colours in store, but I’m not sure if there are more online. I ended up getting two shades in: ‘Brown’ (because I’m physically incapable of passing up a brown lipstick) and ‘Purple’. Brown is quite dark and actually has a strong red undertone, so it looks like a deep, warm red on MY skin tone.  Purple is a simple, bright berry purple – but it packs a punch on the lips. It’s actually the first lipstick I’ve ever had of this colour and I actually quite like how it looks on me. Both shades are VERY pigmented. One layer of this lipstick is enough to give you full opacity.

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The finish is not a flat matte like you would get with a liquid lipstick. These have a gorgeous velvet matte finish (as the name suggests) which is a similar finish to the MAC matte lipsticks. Of course these won’t be the EXACT same formula as the MAC Velvetease Lip Pencils. It’s like a 6th of the price, so naturally the ingredients won’t be the same quality. Indeed, the latter has a creamier texture which is indicative of the more expensive silicones whereas the Primark dupes have a waxier kind of formula. That does mean that the application of the MAC ones IS smoother, but that’s NOT to say that the Primark lipsticks are difficult to apply. Because they’re not. They go on very easily. However I would recommend that your lips be exfoliated and moisturised beforehand because this lipstick can sometimes emphasise really dry areas.

Because I didn’t get the MAC Velvetease Pencil I can’t speak for its longevity and comfort of wear, but I CAN speak for the Primark crayons. These babies last a LONG time. Providing I don’t eat anything too greasy, the colour can last on my lips up to FIVE hours before it starts to fade. That’s pretty darn good for a £2 lipstick. These are also very easy to re-apply – you can just put a new layer on top of an old one without it looking weird – which makes it perfect to chuck in the bag so that you can touch-up your lip colour as the day goes on. It’s quite comfortable to wear for the first few hours or so, but these CAN be slightly drying if you’ve been wearing them for a long time. I noticed dryness on my bottom lip after wearing this for 7+ hours. But that, at least to me, is a minor con in comparison to all the pros and good points that this lipstick brings to the table.

I honestly hope Primark extend the shade range because I want to buy them ALL. No joke. And for £2 each, it won’t break my bank even if I did. So if you’re looking for a dupe for the MAC Velvetease Lip Pencils or even the NARS Matte Lip Pencils, then you should definitely try these out.

Here’s two pictures of me using the both shades (Top: Purple – Bottom: Brown) =

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Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

Shop the Primark beauty range here

 

My Top 3 Drugstore Foundations for Oily Skin

My Top 3 Drugstore Foundations for Oily Skin

I love foundations. I’ve always felt like the key to great makeup is a flawless base which is why I love trying out new ones. However, as I’ve said in a previous post, me and foundations have a love-hate relationship. Whilst I love foundations…they don’t necessarily all love me back. This is mostly to do with the fact that most foundations CAN NOT SURVIVE ON MY OILY FACE. Seriously. They either slide off, get cakey, fade away or transfer on anything it comes in to contact with. It’s pretty awful. So much time, effort and money has gone into finding foundations that actually work for me. It’s been a long and hard journey… *cue sad music*

BUT in the long-run, all that effort has been rewarded! I finally have some ride-or-die products (both high-end and drugstore) which work miracles for my face. The ones I will be talking about today are my Top 3 Favourites from the drugstore (or high-street depending on what you call it). I love all three equally but for different reasons, so I’m not putting them in any particular order. 

Soap & Glory One Heck of a Blot Foundation – (Shade: Happy Medium)

I’ve already done a separate post reviewing this product in depth which you can read here – but I thought I’d give you some general points on it.

  • £12 at Boots.
  • Full Coverage.
  • Flat matte finish.
  • Lasts a long time on the face and holds up against oiliness.
  • Doesn’t oxidise throughout the day.
  • Has a good, strong yellow undertone (that isn’t orange) which can be quite hard to find at the drugstore.
  • No weird smells.
  • Has a pump to dispense product.
  • BUT the shade range is very limited (only 4 shades).
  • It dries quickly so you either have to apply and blend it really briskly or in sections around your face.
  • Can look cakey if you don’t apply it properly.
  • It has a tendency to transfer after it’s been on the skin for a while.
  • It’s consistency is quite thick so it can feel heavy on the skin if you apply too much.
  • Doesn’t look amazing in flash photography.

 

B. Makeup B.Even Oil Control Foundation – (Shade: 040 Honey)

  • £10.99 at Superdrug – but I have a bad feeling it’s been discontinued because I can’t find it on the Superdrug website anymore (and if that’s the case I’ll be DEVASTATED).
  • Nice Medium Coverage but can be built up to Full Coverage.
  • Finish is very natural. It’s not matte but not dewy so it’s a “semi-matte” finish. In other words it just looks like skin.
  • Doesn’t feel heavy on your face.
  • Very easy to apply and doesn’t set too quickly so you have time to really work it into the skin.
  • Doesn’t get cakey.
  • Lasts ALL DAY and doesn’t fade or go patchy. Holds up really well on oily skin.
  • Huge range of colours.
  • Has a yellow undertone, but people with a neutral toned skin can get away with it.
  • Doesn’t smell too strongly of anything.
  • Has a pump.
  • The ONLY real downside to this product is the fact that it oxidises A LOT. Always get the shade below what you think you are. 
  • Bottle is made of glass so is arguably heavy and not travel-friendly, but that’s something I don’t really care about because the product itself is SO GOOD.

Bourjois Paris Air Mat Foundation – (Shade: 04 Beige)

  • £9.99 at Boots AND Superdrug.
  • Medium Coverage but can be built to Full Coverage.
  • Finish is somewhere between the previous two. It’s not a flat matte but it’s definitely matte.
  • Easy to apply and blends well.
  • Has an almost gel-like texture that makes it feel very lightweight on the skin.
  • Doesn’t get cakey.
  • Lasts a very long time and stays on oily skin very well.
  • Doesn’t oxidise.
  • Doesn’t transfer.
  • Has a good yellow undertone – but again – people with neutral-toned skin can get away with it.
  • In a squeezy-tube type of packaging so it’s space efficient and travel friendly and it’s easy to dispense the desired amount of product.
  • Photographs BEAUTIFULLY, even in flash photography.
  • BUT the shade range is quite limited (only 5 shades available).
  • Has a strong fruity, smell which could be an issue if you’re sensitive to smells.

 

Here’s a picture of all shades watched together side by side: (L-R Soap & Glory, B.Beauty, Bourjois)

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Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

Review – MeNow Long Lasting Lip Gloss

Review – MeNow Long Lasting Lip Gloss

The infamous $1 liquid lipsticks on Ebay.

Firstly: the name is very misleading. Although these are marketed as lip glosses, they have a matte finish and therefore should be classified as liquid lipsticks. If I remember correctly, everyone went nuts over this brand because 1) they were so dang cheap and 2) one of the shades was supposedly a dupe for the Limecrime Velvetine in Cashmere. I never actually planned on picking any of these up but this wasn’t for any particular reason – I just wasn’t bothered. BUT just over a week ago my cousin gave me a bunch of them after buying some for herself and not liking them. So I decided to test them out and do a review.

Let’s just say: you get what you pay for.

I mean – for $1 a piece – my expectations weren’t high in the first place…so I guess you could say these liquid lipsticks lived up to my expectation. I mean they aren’t AWFUL but they’re not great.

From what I hear, these liquid lipsticks can take up to TWO MONTHS to be delivered. These products come straight out of China, so delays in postage aren’t that surprising – but two months?! I actually read a review where one customer’s delivery took so long she had completely forgotten she purchased them until they arrived on her doorstep. Another significant downside to buying makeup products from China is that companies MUST (by Chinese law) test cosmetic products on animals. I don’t know about you guys, but that doesn’t really sit right with me.

So moving on to my personal experience with these products.

I have 6 shades: 07 (a magenta pink), 10 (a pearly pink), 14 (a shimmery, light peach), 28 (a classic hollywood red), 30 (a grey brown nude) and 32 (a red with brown undertone).

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I know people complain about the packaging but I personally found them to be very cute. They remind me of the test tubes I used in Chemistry in high school. The applicator is a standard doe-foot BUT it’s so small. Seriously. It’s TINY. As a result the wand doesn’t pick up much product at all and because of that, I found myself having to dip it back into the tube multiple times just to get enough product to cover all of my lips. It was a LOT of effort. The formula smells of cheap play-makeup. Like a strong chemical smell that’s hastily covered by an almost sickly sweet scent. Unfortunately, you can still smell it on the lips when you apply it.

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Pigmentation and application of the lipstick varies between the individual shades. The least pigmented and hardest to apply were the shimmery shades (10 and 14). They are really streaky when you apply them to the lips and they require more than one coat in order to get full opacity. The other shades (the matte shades) are easier to apply, although 32 can get a bit streaky. Bizarrely enough, the best shade in terms of application was the nude shade (30) which is odd because I always find lighter shades to have the iffiest formulas.

One of the biggest problems with these liquid lipsticks is that they didn’t fully set. Although they do look matte, they certainly don’t feel it. Even after an hour after application they stay really tacky on the lips, to a point where I feel my lips sticking to one another when I talk which is something I haven’t experienced with any liquid lipstick that I’ve ever tried before. It’s actually quite uncomfortable. And because they don’t really set, they do tend to wear away quite quickly throughout the day and especially after eating. As it fades it goes very patchy and this product doesn’t build well. I tried layering it when I touched up the colour halfway through the day and it looked pretty bad.

In this case, you get the quality of product that you pay for – and these are REALLY cheap. So overall, I’m not a fan and I can see why my cousin didn’t like them.

Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

Review – NYX Lip Lingerie Liquid Lipsticks

Review – NYX Lip Lingerie Liquid Lipsticks

I finally took the plunge and got some of these babies.

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I think that the NYX Lip Lingerie liquid lipsticks was one of THE (or at least my) most highly anticipated releases of late 2015/early 2016. I remember when I first saw a picture of it drop on Trendmood’s Instagram page and I remember having an instant reaction of “Oh-My-God-I-Want-Them-All”. All I needed to hear was “nude” and “liquid lipsticks” and I was sold.

However when these liquid lipsticks DID eventually drop, they had such a mixed reception that it instantly put me off getting them. Considering I would have had to purchase them on the NYX website and get them shipped internationally to the UK, I didn’t want to spend a bucketload of money just to NOT like them. The reviews were so mixed that I just couldn’t justify the purchase and I did my best to forget about them.

But then, a few weeks ago, they were added to the Boots website. After much inner-debating and manoeuvring with my budget I decided to pick up a few and test them out for myself. I got three and have been trying them out so I could do this blog post.

Before I go into my full, in-depth review of the products I just want to point out some general pros of this range. Firstly, they’re VERY affordable. I paid £6.50 per tube and that’s relatively cheap for a liquid lipstick. Secondly I have to take this opportunity to applaud NYX on the stunning colour range. This collection is quite unique. Not in the sense that it’s marketed as a “nude” collection, but in the sense that they chose nude as their theme and then went and picked the most DIVERSE collection of nudes you could ever hope to find. I like that there’s a significant deviance in the shades. Sure, there are the standard “everyday” nudes but they also have some really OUT THERE shades that aren’t your classic nude colours. But that being said, I wouldn’t say that any of these shades are not wearable.

So onto the product itself. I ended up getting 3 shades (L-R) in: 02 Embellishment (cool toned purple taupe), 05 Beauty Mark (soft neutral brown) and 10 Teddy (a deep taupe with a hint of mauve). 

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(top pic is the lipstick freshly applied and bottom pic is when it has set)

The consistency is very moussey. It’s not a true liquid like the Limecrime Velvetines but it’s not a cream like the OFRA Long Lasting Liquid Lipsticks – if anything it’s even thicker. The benefit of having a thick formula is that it takes longer to dry and you have more time to apply the product evenly. But there are several downsides. One is that I’ve noticed it emphasises the lines on my lips more than any other formula I’ve tried. However, I can reduce that effect by properly exfoliating before application. The other downside is that some of the shades don’t fully “dry”. I definitely noticed some tackiness with Embellishment and Teddy even hours after application. However, these DO set to a lovely matte finish and they DO seem to be relatively transfer-proof. They are also VERY comfortable to wear – my lips don’t feel dry even when I’ve worn it for several hours.

The area where these liquid lipsticks really fall down is longevity. If left untouched on my lips, they last up to 3-4 hours before they start fading on the inner rims of my lips. That’s standard for most of my cheaper liquid lipsticks such as the Sleek Matte Me Lip Creams and the MUA Luxe Velvet Lip Laquers. However, the second you eat anything, this lipstick is a goner. It leaves your lips faster than most people leave their one night stands. And it doesn’t even have to be really OILY foods (which are the bane of pretty much ALL liquid lipsticks). I ate a chicken salad whilst wearing one of the shades and just the repeated motion of putting the fork in my mouth was enough to rub most of the lipstick off. I ended up looking like I was only wearing lip liner. And retouching with this product is a no-no. It builds HORRIBLY. Because it has the tendency to emphasise lines on your lips, you end up with a clear line of demarkation across your lips where the lipstick has emphasised the place where the old application meets the fresh one. However, despite this it’s actually pretty difficult to remove the residue of lipstick on your lips at the end of the day. It doesn’t come off with just any makeup wipe or micellar water. I needed an oil-based cleaner to remove this. So the two point severely contradict each other.

So overall, I definitely understand the mixed reviews on these lipsticks. The good points about them are SO GOOD but the bad points about them are PRETTY BAD. I adore the colours but don’t particularly like the wear. I feel like I’d only ever use this for my IG makeup looks or if I’m only going out for a short while and won’t be eating. If they reformulated these lipsticks to improve the longevity then these would easily be in my top 3 favourite liquid lipsticks. But I guess for the price, there did have to be SOME downsides to these products.

Here’s a photo of me wearing Teddy on my lips:

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Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

Shop the NYX Lip Lingerie Liquid Lipsticks here

Review and Swatches – I Heart Makeup Black Velvet Palette

Review and Swatches – I Heart Makeup Black Velvet Palette

Makeup Revolution is slowly becoming one of my favourite drugstore brands EVER. Yes, I really said that.

I’m also falling in love with their sister brands (brands that MUR own and produce products for) which are I Heart Makeup and Freedom Makeup. I think the marketing difference between these three brands is that I Heart Makeup is targeted more towards a younger demographic with lots of cute and quirky packaging, whilst Freedom Makeup is targeted more towards makeup artists another professional cosmeticians and Makeup Revolution is the general, all-rounder brand. However, the high quality and the affordability of the products run right across the board.

One of the products I love the MOST from the MUR empire are the eyeshadow palettes. They’re very affordable and I love that they do dupe palettes for some well-known and more expensive palettes (Like the Too Faced Chocolate Bar palettes, Urban Decay Naked palettes and the Lorac Pro palettes).

The one that I am reviewing today is the Black Velvet palette which is from the I Heart Makeup line.

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As far as I know, this isn’t supposed to be a dupe for any high end palettes but when I look at it, I see a few colours similar to the ones in theBalm Meet Matt(e) Nude eyeshadow palette. This costs £7.99 and you get 16 shades. I have to admit I’m not a HUGE fan of the packaging. The top is covered in layer of synthetic black ‘velvet’ and in the middle there’s this black, 3D heart made from plastic. In my personal opinion, the plastic heart makes it look a bit childish. I would have much preferred it if they had just left it covered in the velvet material which would have been more chic. But like they say, it’s what is on the INSIDE that matters. The palette comes with a great sized mirror on the inside of the lid, a double-ended sponge applicator and a plastic sheet which lists all the names of the shadows.

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I would say that overall, there is a neutral colour scheme, BUT I would say that the left half of the palette has slightly warmer tones whilst the right half houses cooler shades. There are 13 matte eyeshadows and 3 shimmer eyeshadows. The formulation of these are VERY good. I was seriously impressed. The eyeshadows are smooth and blendable. They aren’t chalky (even the lighter shades) and they have GREAT pigmentation (especially the shimmers in this palette – I couldn’t believe how pigmented they were and how well they translated in the swatch). The only problem I had was with one of the darkest shades in the palette (Velvet). It wasn’t as pigmented as the others and came across as a grey rather than a deep grey (verging on black). It’s the only colour I found myself having to build up to make it look like it’s colour in the pan. Apart from that, all the eyeshadows swatched VERY well.

Overall, I’m more than happy with this purchase. It’s such good value for your money. I can definitely see myself doing quite a few different eye looks with this palette alone, so it’s definitely one I would bring on holiday with me.

Here are the swatches of the eyeshadows in this palette:

(Top Row L-R: True, Want, Long (shimmer), Feel (shimmer), Black)

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(Middle Row L-R: Baby, Please, Sweet, Sin, Tender, Slow)

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(Bottom Row L-R: Sweet no.2 (pretty much my exact skintone so it doesn’t show up well), Bring, Wild, Cry (shimmer), Velvet)

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Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

Shop the I Heart Makeup Black Velvet eyeshadow palette here

Why I wear makeup – the REAL reason.

Why I wear makeup – the REAL reason.

I need to rant. 

There’s nothing I hate MORE than browsing makeup pages on IG and seeing comments like: “girls who wear a lot of makeup are basically liars” or “you must wear that much makeup because you’re really insecure”.

This is a long-standing issue that has surrounded the fringes of the makeup community for as long as I can remember. It’s an underlying thread of negativity that never seems to go away, no matter how hard we fight against it.

It’s the unjustified assumption that girls who wear makeup only do so because they essentially “hate the way they look”.

For some reason there are people who are intent on creating a stigma against those of us who are guilty of nothing more than having a love and passion for makeup.

They accuse us of using makeup to “trick” boys into thinking that we are beautiful so that they’ll date us, hence all the ‘take her swimming on the first date’ jokes (well, the joke’s on you because waterproof makeup is a real thing). If not that, then they project this idea on us that we wear makeup because we find ourselves ugly and we can’t accept ourselves – so we wear makeup to create a “different identity”( because we apparently can’t stand our own).

BUT NONE OF THIS IS TRUE.

Let’s get one thing straight: I wear makeup because I goddamn want to.

And frankly – it’s nobody’s business if I do or don’t. But I’m still going to give some personal reasons as to why I choose to wear makeup, so I can help people understand why it’s such a big part of my life and why that’s okay.

Firstly, makeup is an art form. There’s a reason why the professionals of this field are called Makeup ARTISTS. Now I personally don’t paint and I’m not a photographer and I don’t design clothes. I stopped sketching years ago because I simply don’t have the time for it anymore. To be honest, the life of a law student doesn’t leave a lot of space for creativity. Putting my makeup on is the main artistic outlet in my life. It allows me 15-30 minutes to play around with colour and products to create a look that I get to showcase for the rest of the day. It’s the same as a painter who’s painting – or a photographer taking pictures – or a fashion designer customising clothes. It’s using your skills and creativity to make something you can be proud of. So why do photographers and artists and fashion designers get credit for what they do, but makeup artists get backlash and negativity? Makeup is an art and it needs to be recognised as such.

Another big reason as to why I like wearing makeup is because it helps me deal with my anxiety. I suffer from pretty severe anxiety and some days it gets so bad that I just don’t want to get out of bed and have to deal with life that day. But putting on my makeup as part of my morning routine is a massive help when it comes to keeping my anxiety levels down to a manageable level. I go to my ‘happy place’ when I put on my makeup in the morning. I completely zone out and I focus on nothing but my application. It doesn’t sound like much, but getting to chill out in those minutes as part of my morning routine really helps me keep a handle on my anxiety. It’s an every day blessing.

I think that the idea of people wearing makeup because they “can’t accept themselves” is a major over-exaggeration. It IS true that people wear makeup because they want to cover a few flaws or hide some imperfections. In doing so, they can go about their day with a boost of self-confidence. And what the hell is wrong with that? If you had the means of ridding yourself of a few insecurities, wouldn’t you do the same? I wear makeup to help cover dark circles, redness, acne scars, discolouration and a MULTITUDE of other flaws. Do I do that because I hate myself and the way I look? No. I accept the face that I was given and I love it because it’s mine and mine only. But that doesn’t mean I won’t cover the bits that I don’t like as much and feel insecure about. It makes me happier to see myself with less flaws. One of the biggest benefits of makeup is that it can be so transformative. So why do people portray that as a negative thing?

Another reason why I love makeup is because it’s a passion shared by millions of people around the world. And through this shared love for the same thing, we have built positive and supportive communities worldwide of women and men who empower each other through our mutual passion. I’ve made some amazing friends through such communities who I probably would never have met had I not loved makeup as much as I do. It’s thanks to makeup and makeup alone that I get to network with such incredible people on a daily basis.

Finally, we don’t wear makeup to “trick” boys into thinking we’re beautiful so they’ll date us. For real now, any guy who genuinely thinks that I naturally have sparkly gold eyelids and dark red lips is too stupid to date me in the first place.

So I hope this has enlightened you makeup-haters out there as to why we do what we do. Have a good day.

Cephy xx

 

 

 

Review – LUSH Cup O’ Coffee Face and Body Mask

Review – LUSH Cup O’ Coffee Face and Body Mask

Attention all coffee lovers!

So if you remember, in my Body Shop Mineral Warming Mask review I said that I was trying to get back into face masks. One that was recommended by a girl I follow on the Gram of Insta was this one by LUSH Cosmetics. The company says: “If you’re a sucker for the strong, dark, stimulating type, take a shot of this coffee infusion filled mask to the face. Wake up and invigorate the skin with the rich aroma of freshly brewed coffee. Roasted cocoa extract, vetivert and coriander oil combine to create an addictive fragrance. It’s so enslaving, don’t just use on your face. Smooth over face and body, leave for 10-15 minutes and rinse with warm water for your daily fix.”

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All I read was: IF YOU LOVE COFFEE, THEN GET THIS BECAUSE IT’S BASICALLY COFFEE FOR YOUR FACE!

So I purchased this at my local LUSH store and was sold even BEFORE the lovely sales assistant gave me a hand demo of the product. Why? Because the smell is AMAZING. It smells like coffee (big surprise) but like: REAL coffee. That freshly-ground-beans-straight-from-that-really-exotic-country type smell. Eu de Caffeine. But I suppose it’s an acquired taste. Most people think coffee and think “creamy and sweet” which is NOT the case – freshly ground coffee beans actually have quite a bitter smell. This mask isn’t THAT bitter, but it’s definitely not sweet. My boyfriend took a sniff and immediately recoiled and said it smelled “really weird”. But I loved it – so I got it. It’s £6.75 for a pot of 150g (the smaller pot size), so it’s not ridiculously expensive and should last at least three months if used on a regular basis.

The mask itself has a very thick and sticky consistency. It’s like a dark olive green/mud colour. Naturally, because of it’s exfoliating elements (the ground up coffee) it’s also very gritty. It goes on like a paste. I only use this on my face because I personally don’t use masks on my body – but feel free to if that’s your thing. It was a bit weird at first to smear it over my face because I’ve never used a mask this thick before, but it did spread very nicely.

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I waited for 12 minutes because it was in between 10 and 15 and I like being awkward. It didn’t really dry or “set” on my face. It stayed pretty similar in consistency throughout that period. I didn’t feel anything happening to my skin, no tightening like normal masks that dry which was a bit of a disappointment because I personally LIKE feeling my face get stuck (I’m weird, I know). But on the plus side I didn’t feel any burning or pain which was a good sign I wasn’t having some weird reaction to the product. When it came to washing it off, I enjoyed putting the coffee granules to work and really scrubbing at my face. This is an AMAZING scrub. After washing the mask off, my skin felt so smooth and soft. It was a BIT red, but I really REALLY scrubbed so I’m not surprised my face looked a tad raw. You can obviously be a lot more gentle in your own routine.

Now I’m not going to lie, washing the mask off made a mess. I did it over the bathroom sink, and the porcelain was AWASH in granules and muddy looking water by the end of the process. But it is SO worth it. Because my skin looked and felt really good afterwards. It was soft and smooth to touch and it looked visibly brighter and healthier. I was VERY impressed with the result.

Overall, I LOVE this mask. I would recommend it to anybody EXCEPT those who have sensitive skin because the scrub element is quite thorough. I use this once a week and it’s definitely improved my skin texture.
Until next time my loves,

Cephy xx

Shop the LUSH Cup O’ Coffee Mask here