Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer

2017, May

Having no dark under eye circles used to be my thing. Seriously. I never really had a need to use a concealer and whenever I did I was always left a bit disappointed because I could never really see that much of a difference. That was until seven months ago I gave birth to my beautiful baby daughter. When you have a baby the lack of sleep you have to deal with is out of this world. The decline was fast, within days I had dark under eye circles like I’ve never seen before. And the worst part is that it looks like they’re here to stay so now I need all the concealer help I can get.

I haven’t seen a single negative word said about the Tarte Shape Tape Concealer so it seemed like a great product to try. But is it really that good?

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First off – it’s extremely hard to get your hands on this if you live in the UK. Most of the basic shades are sold out but a new waiting list is open every few months on QVC website HERE. If you don’t want to wait and for a much bigger shade selection Tarte’s website is your best bet – but it’s not cheap. Together with the delivery and tax charges I ended up paying almost £40!!! It’s cheaper than amazon and ebay, though.

The formula of this seems to be based on one of the new generation foundations that are very liquidy and lightweight but deliver extremely good coverage at the same time. The applicator is huge and it deposits quite a lot of product, maybe even a bit more than I would like. The product can be a bit drying (don’t expect any radiance or dewiness from this!) so the best way to apply is with a damp sponge. Since it is a bit drying you don’t have to set it and it doesn’t collect in creases during the day so it’s a great timesaver. In terms of coverage it’s a very decent high to medium coverage concealer. It won’t go as far as covering tattoos but then how often do you actually need a concealer of that strength anyway?

All in all it’s a very good product but there is definitely some room for improvement. On the days when my skin is feeling particularly dry this unfortunately doesn’t work for me so at this stage I’m not sure I would repurchase.

What are your favourite concealers? I would love to hear some recommendations.

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MAC x Fleur De Force Lipstick

2017, May

I was so excited when back in January Fleur announced she was collaborating with MAC to bring out a new lipstick. If you’re familiar with Fleur’s content it probably came as no surprise that she’s picked a neutral shade. It’s more nude than I expected and it’s not really a shade I would have normally picked for myself. There were some early swatch photos available before it went on sale and again I can’t say that I was instantly sold. I did decide to pick it up anyway and boy do I like it! I newer thought a nude lip would suit me but I was so wrong! I am completely obsessed with this lipstick and now I’m kicking myself for not picking up a back-up since it was a limited edition.

It’s what I would call a true nude – there are no noticeable traces of pink, red or orange, it’s more of a light caramel brown. I can see this being a perfect match with a smokey eye or a bronzed up look in the summer. It also works great as an everyday lipstick with minimal makeup. It’s a creamsheen formula but it seems more pigmented and longer lasting than other creamsheen lipsticks I own.

At the time this post goes live this lipstick has been sold out online from all of the official retailers. If there are any left in stores at Selfridges or Brown Thomas or if they pop up on ebay grab one. Or two. That is of course if I don’t beat you to it. Cracking job Fleur, it’s my favourite beauty purchase of the year so far.

Which is your favourite everyday lipstick?

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Makeup Revolution palettes

2017, May

It’s a weird one for me because I don’t really know how I feel about this brand. I’m all for good quality afordable makeup and Makeup Revolution fits that bill perfectly. The product selection is huge and there is something for everyone – the average buyers like me get to try out trend products without breaking the bank, professionals can find super cheap additions to their kit and makeup virgins are able to build a very decent starter set by picking up just a couple of the brand’s palettes.

It’s the dupeing thing that bugs me. Sure, they’re not trying to sell a fake Urban Decay, Lorac or Kat von D palettes. They’re more like the Topshop version of the super expensive Gucci shoes. We could call it the inspired makeup I guess. But then looking at my very modest collection of four my two favourites are actually the inspired ones. So I’ll start with those:

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Makeup Revolution Eyeshadow Pallet Iconic Smokey (£6.00) – this is a dupe for The Urban Decay Naked Smoky Eyeshadow Palette (£39.50). I first tried applying the shadows without an eye primer and the lasting power was absolutely rubbish – they were gone in a matter of hours. Having said that, it can easly happen with some of the high-end shadows too. With a primer (I used The Nars Pro Prime Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base £19.50) it’s a completely different story  – they lasted beautifully all day without any creasing or smudging. I’d say pigmentation is better than average. It’s not a high end palette and as long as you don’t pretend that it is I think you’ll be very happy with the results. My favourite thing about the palettes is the shade selection – they really are great shades for creating all kinds of smokey eye looks, but it’s not like I can give Makeup Revolution any credit for that. And that’s the thing – the inspired makeup feels right and so wrong at the same time.

 

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Makeup Revolution Beyond Radiance Palette (£8.00) – from what I gather this is a dupe for The Hourglas Ambient Lighting Palette (£59.00). I own only one of the original Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light (£40.00) and I think I actually prefer the Makeup Revolution’s version. It’s a very sattle product that instantly livens up your face and gives you that glow from within look. I wouldn’t say it’s a highlighting palette but you could potentially use the middle shade as a very gentle highlight – it has a bit more shimmer than the other two. Using this palette has actually made me think about look in-to buying the original Hourglass palette so maybe there are more benefits in the dupeing thing for the original brands than I realise.

 

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Contour Palette (£8.00) – I’ve never really been able to ace the contouring thing so I bought this in attempt to get some practice without spending a fortune. Most of the shades are actually too dark for me as contouring powders but they work well as bronzers. And the two sparkly shades are not as horrible as they look – ther’re actually both quite nice highlighters. It doesn’t work as a countouring palette for me but that’s my own fault for choosing shades that don’t suit my skintone. If these shades work for you I think you will really like this palette.

 

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Blush Palette Sugar & Spice (£6.00) – this is definitely a more traditional  than other Makeup Revolution blush palettes. My most used are the two shades on the top left. And similar to the countouring pallette the two shimmery shades are not actually that scary. They can look nice as toppers with your blush-  just make sure you’re not too heavy handed. It’s a good palette to try if you like switching up and mixing your blush sahades since there are quite a few to choose from.

Something that all of the palettes have in common is obviously the packaging which I actually really like – the palettes are very sleek, reasonably sized and all of them have a huge mirror inside. Something else I noticed with all of the powders is that there is quite a lot of fall-out and they can be a bit hard to blend, but the pigmentation is still there so they’re well worth those extra minutes you’ll have to spend blending.

Have you tried any Makeup Revolution products? How do you feel about the inspired makeup thing?

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Stenders Cosmetics – first impressions

2017, May

I talked about one of my favourite Latvian beauty brands Madara Cosmetics last week (you can read my full review HERE). Another favourite of mine is Stenders Cosmetics. Something that always comes to mind when I think about Stenders is bath-bombs. It was all the craze 10-15 years ago and back then they were pretty much the only bath products I used. But Stenders does so much more now – there are beautiful bodycare, skincare and even suncare products available from the brand. This time I picked up four products:

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Coffee Cream Lip Balm (£5.40/4.8g) – it definitely smells a lot more like a cream than coffee and smell only lasts for a couple of minutes once you apply the balm so the fragrance isn’t an overpowering one. The lip balm itself applies like butter – it’s very, very soft and glides effortlessly on the lips – I could happily just sit there and apply this all day. The thing is, though, – it doesn’t really absorb. It will stay on your lips and protect them while it’s on but once it comes of your lips will go back to their original state. So it’s not really a lip treatment product. It’s still very nice, though. The packaging is small and lightweight so it a great one to pop in a handbag or a travel makeup bag.

Apple Blossom Hand Cream (£5.90/25ml) – I was very interested to find out how this smells because there isn’t really a particular smell that I associate with apple blossoms. Turns out it’s very sweet and floral and a tad bitter and earthy and I absolutely love it! It’s just perfect for this time of year! The hand cream itself is pretty light and absorbs quite quickly. It’s not your heavy duty every day hand cream in terms of what it does to your skin. And since you only get 25ml per tube you will probably want to keep it as a special treat anyway.

Seaberry Nourishing Body Cream (£19.90/200g) – I haven’t really seen sea buckthorn used by any of the international mainstream brands but it’s widely used in Latvia both as a skincare and a food ingredient. The Stenders Seaberry line encapsulates the smell of the berry beautifully – it’s fruity, citrusy and very sweet at the same time. The texture of the cream is quite thick but it’s very easy to apply and it absorbs quickly. It didn’t do anything above and beyond of what a generic body moisturiser can do and the smell didn’t last all that long so it’s more of a shower/bath experience product. I used it with the Seaberry Softening Shower Oil (£14.90/245ml) and had a bit of a Herbal Essences moment. These two products just make me so happy to shower and to moisturise my body.  If you use the shower oil on it’s own the fragrance won’t lasts beyond the bathroom door so you don’t have to worry about it messing with your perfume.

Have you tried anything from the Stenders? Any product recommendations?

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