Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Seventeen palette nude smoky eye

Hey guys!

Just wanted to share a quick post displaying my kinda nude smoky eye I created using the Seventeen Birthday Suit palette. I used the lightest shade on my overall lid, the more medium on the outer half of my life and shaded in my crease with the darkest brown.. I always think it looks scary at first when you start colouring your crease with a really dark colour but it usually works out pretty well in the end!

I love this look, it's polished and the nude colours make it appropriate for work... instead of using black liquid eyeliner I used my Maybelline brown gel eyeliner and I think it's worked a treat.

What do you think? I'd love to see some of your examples of a nude smoky eye! Sali Hughes shared a brilliant video of this many years ago and I've been using her technique ever since. Do you do anything different?

Charlotte xXx

Monday, 28 March 2016

My desert island beauty picks!

Continuing on with the Sunday Girl's awesome February blog prompts, here's my second post! She asked:

Why not share your desert island beauty picks?

So, like most of us, I have a handful of absolute 'cannot live without' products which I use daily to do my basic face!

1. As I mentioned in my previous post, I can't live without the Rimmel Stay Matte powder for shine control. If I don't use it I get the greasies by noon and end up feeling really shiny and uncomfortable so even if I ended up shipwrecked alone on a deserted island, you'd still have to prise this from my cold, panicked hands!

2. For blemishes, you really cannot beat the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer, I use the lightest shade. I started using this around six months ago after reading so many rave reviews and every last one of them spoke the truth, for a really cheap item it performs like something ten times the price might! I like to use it on the redness around my nose and on the odd blemish.

3. I have really dark hair (it's dyed almost black) but light, sparse eyebrows, so I can't get away these days without using the Rimmel eyebrow pencil, you know the one with the little brush on the end (that I totally don't need)? I use little light strokes to add definition to my brows.

4. My desert island eyeliner has to be the Soap and Glory Smoulder Kohl pencil eyeliner, the pigment and colour payoff is unreal, you only have to lightly touch your waterline to get a really deep colour and it doesn't budge all day. I can't usually get away without something on my bottom waterline given that my skin is so pale, I look exhausted without it!

5. For liquid eyeliner (gotta have that cat eye) I got a tip off about the Rimmel Glam Eyes black liquidliner years ago (from Sali Hughes, Guardian beauty editor), she said that this liner works better than liners at four times that price point and man, she wasn't kidding. I've been using it ever since. Easy to use, doesn't smudge, it even survived a funeral. Fact.

6. Mascara-wise, I reckon the one I go back to time and time again is Soap and Glory's Thick and Fast. I got one free with Elle magazine years ago and found it was brilliant, really simple to get super thick and dark lashes. It's not cheap at £10 but a tube lasts ages.

7. Finally, for blusher, I always revert to one of my few higher end beauty buys, NARS blusher in Orgasm. It's a stunning rose gold colour and I always get compliments when I wear it on how well I look! If you can't stretch to £20+ plus on one item, Sleek do a brilliant dupe in 'Rose Gold' which is pretty much identical, I own and use both. The only issue I think is that if you have quite big open pores, the Sleek really highlights that and makes them look like craters, while the NARS doesn't as much.

So there you have it, my desert island beauty must-haves... I could happily go on with eyehsadows, highlighters, primers, tools etc. but the above is the only thing I need and use for my basic everyday face, anything else is a bonus.

What are you must haves? Do you have any alternatives you really rate for the items I mentioned? Thanks for reading!

Charlotte xX

Seventeen Birthday Suite Palette and Define & Conquer Contour Kit review!

Hi guys! Day two of running a blog and I'm still motivated, it's all good! Been a pretty chill day over here with it being Bank Holiday Monday in the UK, one of those weird days where it still doesn't feel real that I don't have to work anymore... I used to always have to work these public holidays for the first ten years of my working life, and for the past couple years I've finally had jobs where I get them off, paid! But I always feel guilty when I go into shops on public holidays anyway for the staff at work. However, today that didn't stop me, and while killing some time in town I decided to wander into Boots and check out something I've been meaning to do for ages... contouring.

Yep, you heard right, until today I have NEVER contoured before. Seriously, I just didn't know how people were doing it or what to do, partly I worried that as I'm super pale, it'd make me look weird and muddy. However, having heard rave reviews of Seventeen's contour kit, I figured that for £6 it was worth experimenting so I picked that up. As it was buy one get one half price, this baby also found its way into my basket...

I'm a sucker for a nude palette, I own the first two Naked palettes but given their price I thought it'd be a cool idea to have a cheaper nude palette to take away with me, something I wouldn't be gutted about if it got ruined. They had a great alternative palette with some more blue toned, darker coloured but as I own several fantastic Urban Decay palettes (Alice in Wonderland, Book of Shadows IV, the latest Vice) and really don't think their formula can be rivaled, I played it safe with Birthday Suit.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that the darker powder in the contour palette wasn't as dark as I feared. I picked up a new cheap brush specifically to use for contouring by Seventeen for £2.99 which works a treat as it lays the colour down pretty gently rather than being too over the top. Excitedly, I stood in front of the open window for maximum natural light, held my breath and gave it a shot... and here's the result!

As you can see, it's really not too harsh for even my ghost-toned skin, yet it really helps to define my cheekbones. I'm using a Rimmel liquid blush in the middle of the dark powder and the highlight. My only concern is that the lighter powder, which is supposed to be shimmery, is a little chalky and doesn't seem to do much in the way of highlighting as my skin is already as pale as the powder. But for £5.99 I'm pretty happy just with the darker shade, using my own Sleek solstice palette as a highlight. 

As you can see in this final photo, I even tried contouring the sides of my nose, something I never thought I would get away with, and to my amazement it does make my nose (in real life anyway, maybe not on camera) look slimmer and more defined. It's such a subtle difference but it makes me feel much more 'done' and put together. Excellent!

I haven't had chance to play with the Easy on the Eye Seventeen Birthday Suit palette yet, but I was amazed to find that it contains not only a selection of powder shadows and creams, but also a pan of primer! What a genius idea to put primer in an actual palette. I usually use the Rimmel eyeshadow primer (when the holy grail Urban Decay primer is out of my budget) but I'm keen to give this primer a shot, and maybe even save some space next time I go away.

Seventeen are currently buy one, get one half price in Boots. You can buy the contour kit here for £5.99, and the palette here for £7.99. Have you tried these?

Sunday, 27 March 2016

The Sunday Girl's challenge! Post one.

The awesome The Sunday Girl recently posted a 'blog post idea for every day in February', which I thought I'd take advantage of to get my blog kick started! Although it's now late March, almost April, but what the hell. So, here's day one! I'm going to try and write something for all of them to mix it up a bit, rather than skipping the ones that are too difficult!

So, here's day one! Thanks, Sunday Girl. I love bloggers who are keen to give newbies a leg up and spread the love <3

1, The one beauty product you can not live without and why.

Ooh, this is a difficult one... sadly I have to go with a super boring choice! I have really oily skin which used to be the bane of my life before I got my skincare routine down, however I still find that it's impossible to go all day without touching up with powder and/or using blotting sheets. So my 'one product I can't live without' is Rimmel's Stay Matte pressed powder in 01Transparent.

I envy the girls who have regular skin and can choose something visible for this category like mascara or lipstick so much, as my choice only makes my skin look less oily! But yes, if I could only choose one product it'd be this. Thankfully I have pretty clear skin so I could live with just using this without any foundation or concealer if I had to.

I've hit pan and finished one of these roughly once per month for the past ten years.

What are your choices?



As an avid reader of the many wonderful beauty bloggers out there, I decided it was time to step up and start writing myself!

Ever since I was a little girl, I've loved makeup... some of my earliest memories are of raiding through my Auntie's makeup bag, I can almost remember the powdery scent now. My Mum wouldn't ever have been seen dead leaving the house without mascara, foundation and lipstick and I've followed in her footsteps, I can count on one hand the number of times I've left the house without makeup in the past few years, and I'm pretty sure all of those occasions were due to being too sick to put any on! It's not that I hate my unmadeup (that's a word right?) face, it's fine, I just think I look my best self when I take that extra time to enhance my features with cosmetics.

More than anything, I find makeup truly, truly fun! It's like being able to put a different version of yourself out into the world each day, whether it's a classic feline flick, a heavier smoky eye, a nude blend of shadows with smudgy brown charcoal or rocking a bright lip. I have over the years had the occasional friend ask if it isn't a total pain spending so much time on my makeup each day (maybe twenty minutes!), but I genuinely feel excitement when I sit down and start figuring out what I want to do with my face today.

I've tried starting beauty blogs before and never got anywhere, I think I put too much pressure on myself to write tonnes every time, although I'm noticed from other blogs that lots of girls just post a short punchy article, quick and simple to read, so I'm going to try and not put too much pressure on myself and just make an effort to post.

Anyway, if you've read this, I'd appreciate it SO much if you can leave a comment, to have someone I don't know comment on here would be a pretty huge deal to me! I'm not a pro, I won't be taking fancy photos with a great camera, so bear with me if any pictures I share are iPhone snaps with products sitting on my kitchen table haha!

Lots of love! Charlotte Elise xX