May 30, 2013

A Glowy Base

Summer is a good time to re-evaluate a lot of things in your beauty routine - as a general rule, SPF goes up whilst coverage tends to go down, and a lot of us tend to favour cream over powder. Although I have cut down on heavy coverage, I am still more comfortable wearing a foundation than a BB cream or tinted product. If you, like me, are a foundation kinda gal at heart, you can still cheat glowing, natural-looking summer skin with the right products.

May 29, 2013

Schwarzkopf Silhouette Flexible Hold Pumpspray

It's been a while since you've seen me talking about hair products (I think this was the last time?! Or maybe this!) and, honestly, that's because I am SO uninspired when it comes to my hair. Day-to-day, I don't use heat on it, nor do I style it and, so, the only product I really need to maintain it is shampoo. Yep, I don't even use conditioner on a regular basis! However, when I do style my hair, it is usually in some form of curls or waves which, on straight hair, means I need some good and strong products on hand to hold the style for the entire day/night. 

When Schwarzkopf sent me over a bottle of their new Silhouette Flexible Hold* (RRP €8.90) pump hairspray, I set it to one side because (a) hair products don't get my motor running as much a make-up does and (b) I am fearful of new hair stuff as I never know what to do with it and it is inevitable that I will end up with a greasy mop of hair thanks to clumsy application! However, I was curling my hair last weekend and decided to use it instead of my ever present Elnett and, holy crap, I am pretty sure this is THE perfect hairspray formula for holding textured styles in naturally straight hair!

May 28, 2013

Soap & Glorified

Soap & Glory is a brand that I have sort of indirectly come around to liking a lot. When their products first became really popular about two or three years ago, I really liked them and went through a good few of them after receiving one of their whopper gift sets at Christmas! After that, I think I was kind of sick of their signature scent and moved on to other products. Over the last year, though, Soap & Glory have expanded a lot and brought in new scents, which have won me over again.

May 27, 2013

Chanel Summer 2013: L'ÉTÉ PAPILLON DE CHANEL

While it's not a brand that we buy a lot of, Dee and I reserve a special place in our hearts for Chanel make-up. There is something so elegant, classy and luxe about the timeless black and gold packaging that makes every purchase feel special and worthwhile.

For their summer 2013 collection, L'Été Papillon de Chanel, the brand drew inspiration from butterfly wings; thinking in terms of colour blocking in vibrant shades that conjure the carefree feelings of playfulness and energy that are most associated with summer.

May 24, 2013

Garnier Pure Active Charcoal Scrub vs Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask

When the new Garnier Pure Active Intensive Charcoal Scrub* landed on my doorstep, my thoughts immediately shifted to a longtime favourite product of mine, the Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask. Both products, though different in nature and formulation, promise to deep cleanse the skin, drawing out impurities and unclogging pores. So, instead of just giving you a limited review of the Garnier scrub, I wanted to do a comparison post since I have heartily recommended the Origins offering in the past and, realistically, if the same results were achievable at a much cheaper price, you're going to want to know about it!

May 23, 2013

My YouTube Addiction

YouTube is basically my TV. I do watch a few shows online, but, when I'm really busy I much prefer to watch a couple of YouTube videos. I often play them when I'm doing my hair and make-up and I just can't get enough. The beauty community on YouTube gets a lot of flack and, while there are plenty of ''sell-outs'' with an overload of sponsored videos and filler content, there is still an abundance of talent, personality and good taste to be seen. We dabbled in video content in the past and found it quite tough to find time to film together, and then edit, upload etc so decided to put all of our effort into writing. I really admire people that make quality videos as it takes a long time - especially those who are juggling it with other jobs!

So, without further ado, here are just some of my favourite people on YouTube. Let me know if you watch these people too, or if you've any suggestions for more to watch!

May 22, 2013

Overrated: Take 2

Back in January (where has the time gone?!) I posted about products that I felt were overrated and had left me feeling a bit cold. The response I got from you guys about your own disappointing products was great and I vowed to do another similar post soon. Fast forward almost 6 months later and I am finally getting around to sharing some more not-so-hot products!

May 21, 2013

The Body Shop Brazil Nut Range

I am really fond of the Body Shop as a brand and usually have a couple of their products on the go.  Most often, it's their body butters - Sinéad and I are both massive fans and have raved about them on numerous occasions! What I really enjoy about the brand is that their range of products are so huge that there is always something else to try, and they are forever expanding as well! I'd previously bought and loved the Brazil Nut body butter, so I was really happy to hear that they'd expanded the scent into a series of products.

On a side note, brazil nuts are an ingredient that The Body Shop have put a huge amount of work into sorcing in an ethical manner. Last year, we met Gaston Vizcarra, a genuninely lovely guy from Peru who has been helping to supply TBS with Community Fair Trade brazil nut oil since 1989. I know that some of you have been a little disheartened with The Body Shop since their association with L'Oreal, but suffice to say that after meeting Gaston last year and hearing in detail about how The Body Shop has helped a lot of people in rural South America, I am satisfied that they are a very ethical company. Now, on to the products!

May 20, 2013

Benefit Fake Up

It's been a while since we've done a joint review so, we thought we'd jump right back in with our thoughts on Benefit's latest big release, Fake Up concealer*. We both have different skintypes and different requirements from a concealer so, we feel like we are well-placed to give you the lowdown on what it promises and how it works.

May 19, 2013

Colour Pop @ Style Club North Earl Street

I know that some people hate it and find it really boring, but I bloody love going to the hairdresser and have done since I was small! I've never been one for the beautician or spa (namely because I can't afford it), but I've always found going to get my hair done to be really relaxing and enjoyable - I think this is probably because, hand on heart, I have never had a bad hairdresser. I have never had a bad experience, and any damage my hair has encountered has been wholly self-inflicted! For years I went to a local Kris Morton salon and had absolutely no complaints. At about 18 I got a bit bored so switched to Peter Mark in on Mary St in Dublin city centre. I went there for ages and simply got bored again so, when Style Club opened near my bus stop in town, my interest was piqued and I found myself switching hairdresser once again.

May 17, 2013

L'Oréal Skin Perfection: Dull Skin

Having reviewed the L'Oréal Skin Perfection line for Dry and Sensitive skin earlier this week, I'm back today with a look at the products aimed at Dull Skin. Just to recap, Skin Perfection is an edit of nine innovative cleansing products that are formulated to remove make-up and impurities while also improving the appearance and texture of the skin. The range is broken down into three categories; Dry and Sensitive Skin, Normal to Combination Skin and Dull Skin, each containing products specifically targeted at the issues associated with each skin type.

May 16, 2013

Bourjois Cream Blush

Quite often, it will take me a while to make up my mind about a product. Even if something is very good, I end up mulling it over for at least a few days before making up my mind. The fact is that a lot of the products coming on to the market these days are of a high standard, meaning that I have become even more discerning when it comes to reviewing them. As soon as I used these cream blushes, though, I was certain that I would love them, and I know that a lot of you will, too!

May 15, 2013

L'Oréal Skin Perfection: Dry and Sensitive Skin

As total skincare junkies, nothing pleases us more than when more accessible and reasonably priced brands up their skincare game and really pay attention to where the market is heading and what types of products, often at the higher-end of the scale, are proving popular. L'Oréal seem to have done just that with its new launch.

Skin Perfection is an edit of nine innovative cleansing products that are formulated to remove make-up and impurities while also improving the appearance and texture of the skin. The range is broken down into three categories; Dry and Sensitive Skin, Normal to Combination Skin and Dull Skin, each containing products specifically targeted at the issues associated with each skin type. In this post, I'll be taking you through the Dry and Sensitive Skin line-up and, later this week, the products for Dull Skin.

May 13, 2013

A Day in the Life of a Beauty Blogger: Sinead

I'm a really nosy person. Not to the point of being voyeuristic but, I love getting an insight into people's lives which is probably why I love lifestyle blogs and daily vlogs so much! I have seen a number of these Day In the Life style posts popping up in my Bloglovin' feed and, after reading and enjoying them so much (especially this one by British Beauty Blogger) I decided to try my hand at documenting a day in my own life!

Seeing as this is a beauty blog, I picked a recent day where a lot of what I did was blog-centric, just to give you an idea of what it's like to blog as a hobby and do normal things too! You'll probably notice that my day is really regimented. I plan everything and feel antsy about my routine changing...I'm a bit weird like that! I hope you find it a little bit interesting and if you have done one on your own blog, please leave a link in the comments as I love reading them!

7:25 My first alarm goes off. I set around 8 alarms because I have an innate fear of oversleeping and being late to work! Despite having back up alarms, I ALWAYS wake up fully at the first one and have never hit a snooze button in my life; I think I have managed to convince myself that it is a bad omen for the day to hear my second alarm. Yes, I am weird! 

7:25-7:30 I give myself 5 minutes to relax and wake up properly while I check in with Facebook, Instagram and email. 

7:30-7:35 I head to the bathroom and blitz through my morning routine.

7:35-7:50 I'm back in my room. Even though I don't wear much during the week, I give myself around 15 minutes to do my make-up, purely because it's the last chance I will have to relax until the evening and because I truly enjoy doing it. I have usually laid out my clothes the night before so, I just take 5 minutes or so to get dressed.

May 10, 2013

L'Oréal Sublime Bronze: New for 2013

I've been quite vocal in the past about embracing the pale but, in recent months I have been all about the bronze glow. I wouldn't even call it a tan necessarily but, just a few shades deeper than my natural grey pallor! While I do still have issues with fake tan, particularly how it wears off, looking particularly obvious once my pale skin starts showing through, I have been loving the confidence that comes with having gorgeously golden limbs. As they say, every little helps!
For summer 2013, L'Oréal has introduced a whole new line-up into their Sublime Bronze range. Alongside the oils, exfoliators and moisturisers that feature as part of the Prep and Maintain step are three new tanning options.

May 09, 2013

REN Invisible Pores Detox Mask

Face masks form an integral part of my skincare routine, and I really cringe when people say they don't use them. Yes, we are all busy, but if you factor a mask into your routine even once a week, it'll make a great difference to the overall health and appearance of your complexion. Masks don't have to be done lying down in a meditative state - I can often be caught at home typing away on my laptop with a green clay mask on, and I usually treat moisturising masks as a night cream in order to get the very most out of them. See? Not so hard!

For the past year, I have been firmly devoted to the Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque. It's a US drugstore gem which unfortunately isn't available here, but my aunt kindly brought me home five last year, and I have been steadily working through the massive tubes since (with the help of my little brother - sshh!). This is a really hardworking, deep-cleansing clay mask which smells strongly of toothpaste. I love it but am nearly out, so, decided to try something new - and a little more expensive - from REN.

May 08, 2013

Vichy Idéalia BB Cream: Perfect for Fair Skin!

Today is a good day for, today, I bring you news of a BB cream that is both absolutely amazing and perfect for fair skin. Do you know how rare that is?! After so many months of BB creams that were too orange, too yellow, too grey or too dark for my pasty Irish skin, I was almost ready to throw the towel in on the whole BB phenomenon. However, then came along Vichy Idéalia BB Cream* (RRP €23.50) and all was suddenly right with the world. I now totally understand why people are so crazy about this new generation of base make-up.

May 07, 2013

May Freebies & Gifts with Purchase from Shiseido & Cloud10Beauty

We all love a good freebie, and this time of year seems to be great for them! Magazines are teeming with generous beauty samples, and there are some great gift with purchase offers running, too - here's the low-down on some of them!

May Magazines:

Fee over at Makeup Savvy has done a great post outlining the best of this month's freebies, so I won't regurgitate - head over and have a look for yourself. I am curious about the Marie Claire/Avon offer - has anyone seen that here yet? If we get it too, it could be a good way of getting your hands on some Avon as they are no longer in Ireland, and one of the products is a SuperShock liner - swoon! I do think it can be pretty easy to get carried away with these magazine deals, though, so do always think twice before you buy. If you're going to pick up multiple copies for the free swag, ask yourself if you are actually going to use the sample or if it will simply end up gathering dust! 

Now, on to gifts with purchase. The same applies here: I wouldn't go wasting money to get your hands on a kit of smallish products. However, these gifts can be a lovely added treat if you are stocking up on essentials! I have to confess that I don't think I had ever tried anything by Shiseido until this little set dropped through my letterbox. I am impressed so far, especially by their moisturiser which my skin has been drinking right up. I've also heard great things about their foundations, sun protection and cleansers, so I may be investigating more products before you know it! 

If you are a fan of the brand, then it may interest you to hear about their gift with puchase offer which is running until May 12th. With the purchase of two products, one to be skincare, you receive either a mini “The Skincare” 123 step kit or a mini Benefiance 123 step kit, plus a mini Bio-Performance Advanced Super Restoring Cream and a mini Perfect Rouge Lipstick. Pretty nifty, right? I am loving the mini lippie as the colour kind of goes with everything, so it has been living in my handbag - I might even end up using the whole thing up some day!

Now, on to DuWop. Another brand that I can't proclaim to be overly familiar with, although I do have hilarious memories of us all trying the Lip Venom out in school! This is a fairly generous deal from Cloud10Beauty: buy any DuWop product and receive this little Try Me kit for free. This includes thee little Lip Venoms, two small lip glosses and a miniature of their Private Red lipstick, which I love. Most of what DuWop makes is lip gloss, so if that's your kind of thing (and if you love plumping products!) you really can't go wrong with this brand. I also highly recommend Cloud10Beauty in general; their shipping is super-fast and customer service is second to none. I love the selection of products and brands that they stock, and I'll actually be showing you a sneaky purchase I made from them later on this week! 

May 06, 2013

Elemis Freshskin - Perfect for Festival Season!

I have never camped at a festival but, I have camped. While that may come as a surprise to some, I do know a thing or two about what becomes really important in the cold light of day after a night of sleeping in an overcrowded tent that was pitched, in innocence, over a beetle hill. Yep, think 4 days of pulling beetles, their larvae and their dearly departed out of your clothes, shoes, sleeping bags and hair! And don't let me forget the rude dawn awakenings from overgrown crows, smashing into the side of your tent and squawking loudly which, incidentally, I'm told, is not too unlike the happenings on a festival campsite!

With camping in mind, whether it be for a festival or otherwise, I knew these goodies from the Elemis Freshskin range would be ideal for keeping you feeling and looking fresh and clean following a night under the stars.

May 05, 2013

2. InstaSunday

We're back with another installment of our InstaSunday series! The last few weeks have been manic for us, both together and in our personal lives. A project we've been working on came to light in the form of OOHLALA magazine, Ireland's newest teen publication. Dee has been slogging away in preparation for exams and getting some all important retail therapy in as a reward. Sinead has kicked her health and fitness up a notch and has had a few opportunities to get dressed up like a lady instead of sitting in front of the computer all day! 

Hope you enjoy this snippet of our lives behind the blog and have a great Bank Holiday weekend!

OOHLALA Magazine // Howth Harbour last Sunday // A lovely Essie mani // Cloud10Beauty purchases // A Pearmatte Face Powder from MAC's Baking Beauties // Topshop sale score // Dollymount // New phone case // M&S Sushi

Chatting with MAC about upcoming collections // My home away from home, the weights room! // Off to an awards dinner // Shoe of the Night // A Blueberry Swirl Cupcake // Perfecting my squat technique //Food prep for the next few days // MAC palette due out in August // Date Night!

May 03, 2013

Polar White Pro Teeth Whitening Glaze

I'm a big fan of very white teeth so, I am always interested in products which claim to brighten, whiten and improve the appearance of your smile. I was particularly intrigued when a sample of the Polar White Pro Teeth Whitening Glaze arrived, mainly because I hadn't heard of it before and I love the idea of having a whitening tool for on-the-go. 

May 02, 2013

Clarins Splendours ~ Summer 2013

Clarins are incredibly generous with their samples to press and bloggers here in Ireland. This has guaranteed extended coverage and hyping of the products, but I know that some of you still aren't that attracted to the Clarins counter as a first port of call in comparison to, say, YSL, Chanel or MAC. I am somewhat of the same inclination, as most of what I buy from Clarins myself tends to be skincare. However, their limited edition make-up collections are just getting better and better (I would say usually better than YSL), and there is always an item or two in them that I know I would be at least lusting after had I not received them as samples.

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