Exciting New Makeup Brand – Freedom London

June was an exciting month in the beauty world, lots of new products and a whole new brand launched. Freedom Makeup has been developed by the name behind Makeup Revolution – Adam Minto (AKA Mr Makeup). Being a pretty big Revolution fan, I couldn’t wait to get my grubby mitts on some Freedom bits and bobs. I ordered almost immediately, and waited eagerly for my delivery.

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It is billed as a professional range, which I am not, but it is available for us unprofessionals too. So far all purchases must be made online, but I believe they may be launching in stores soon.

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Pro Curve Mascara

First up Pro Curve Mascara– of course there would be a mascara, this is me we’re talking about. This mascara is ok. It isn’t anything special, but it’s £2. That’s two pounds, people! If you are on a tight budget, then this mascara is perfectly adequate, it just won’t give you the fattest, longest lashes of everyone in the room. Well, unless you’re the only one there, then I suppose it will.

Purr and Meow
Purr and Meow

Next, two of the Pro Glow powder compacts (of which there are four) Meow and Purr; £2.50 each. I’m not entirely sure what to make of these, they are designed to be swept over the skin to create a glow, or you can pick out individual shades. I found that these are more bronzer than anything else – which is fine by me – and they are very soft and powdery. So a light hand is definitely needed, I all but rammed my brush in to Purr and it made quite the mess.
I mentioned the Pro Correct Palette (£5) in my Super Speedy Routine post I really love this palette. As someone who literally dreams about finding a concealer that will actually hide their dark circles, correctors and concealers are extremely exciting. This one is very creamy, and not at all drying under the eyes. I have used it almost every time I have done my makeup in the last month.

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Pro Correct Palette

I also went for a highlighter; Pro Highlight, in Brighten, because I just can’t get enough highlighters. I do love to get my glow on. This highlighter is a very useful addition to my growing collection, it is not overly pigmented, but is just glowy enough to wear on more natural makeup days.

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Pro Highlight in Brighten
Play Kit and Stunning Rose Kit
Play Kit and Stunning Rose Kit

The eyeshadow palettes that I purchased are a bit hit and miss, if I’m honest. The Pro Shade and Brighten palette ‘Play Kit’ contains some lovely purples and blues, with a pretty green thrown in for good measure. These colours are mostly great, with excellent pigmentation, although the plummy purple colour disappears when it is blended. The ‘Stunning Rose Kit’ palette on the other hand, is fantastic; pigmented, soft and blendable. What more can a girl ask for? At £2.50 each, these palettes are a steal. Being very small palettes, they are perfect for popping in your bag for touch ups.

Overall, I have been very impressed with Freedom Makeup. If you have thought about purchasing, but have been undecided, then I say go for it. I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Have you purchased anything from Freedom yet? If so, what did you get, and what do you think?

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Vaseline Spray and Go Body Moisturisers – A Quick Burst of Moisture

I am always on the lookout for body lotions and creams that are not too heavy, but still do the job. I suffer with dry skin all over, so moisturising is not a step I like to skip. On weekday mornings particularly, when I have to get four children ready to face the day, time is of the essence. This means I can’t be waiting around in my undies until my body lotion decides to soak in.

In other words, I expect a lot from body moisturisers. I want good moisture, a pleasant but not overpowering scent, and for it to sink in quick smart. I don’t want much do I?

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I can say that these Vaseline Spray and Go moisturisers deliver exactly that. They are both nicely scented – I actually don’t have a preference – but not so strong that it interferes with my perfume of the day. They are moisturising enough to keep my flaky skin at bay. Because they are in spray form they are quite runny, but I don’t find them messy to use at all.  I picked these up from Superdrug here and here, they were only £4.99 each, and they last for ages.

All in all a successful purchase, and I would buy either again in the future.

What body lotions or creams do you like?

Not a sponsored post, just me sharing a new love 🙂

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The Smallest of Hauls & First Impressions

I have been nearing the end of my Origins GinZing moisturiser  over the last few days.  And, being as fickle as the day is long I have decided not to repurchase it.  As much as I have enjoyed using it, I just don’t feel that it is ‘The One’.

 Despite my decision to have a less spenderific July, I found myself in Boots yesterday.  I did manage to keep my spending to a minimum (honest, guv) and just picked up two Soap and Glory moisturisers (and some nappies for the baby, but they are kind of essential).  I went for Speed Plump and For Daily Youth.  I’m not greedy, but there was a ‘Buy one, get one half price’ offer on, so I thought I would get two, in the hope that one will knock my socks off.

 

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Speed Plump (here) promises to give ‘tighter, brighter, firmer, smoother looking skin’ and apparently has ‘Moistureplump’ technology.  For Daily Youth (here) is a 6 – in – 1 Multi-Active moisture lotion, which will ‘Mazimize moisture levels, soothe stressed skin, rejuvenate tired skin, improve elasticity, soften and smoothe the skin’.  Wow.  Both promise great things, I hope at least one will prove to be my new must-have skincare product.  If results were in any way related to packaging then I would be on to a winner – I just love Soap and Glory packaging.

I used Speed Plump today, and so far so good.  It is for dry/dehydrated skin, but it’s not in any way heavy. A little bit goes a long way, and it disappeared into my skin without leaving a legacy in the form of a greasy film.

I will see how I get on over the next few days, and will report back… Stay tuned!!

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Topshop – is ‘High Street’ Makeup worth it?

It would be an understatement to say that makeup and cosmetics are huge business in 2015, so it makes sense that high street clothing shops would want to get in on that action.

I was intrigued to discover whether the products that can be purchased along with your fashion items are any good, and can they take the place of other makeup staples?

First on my list is Topshop.  The makeup range in Topshop is not a new one, by any means. In fact they are currently celebrating five years of beauty.  I purchased a couple of nail polishes a few years ago and swore I never would again, as my nails became dry and flaky after one application.  I also have an eyeshadow or two that are not recent purchases.  I haven’t included them here, because they are no longer available.

 

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BB Cream Light-Medium – £10:

I am so confused by this product (it doesn’t take much, to be fair).  Applying it is not exactly a joy; it is quite dry and yellow, and although it is described as ‘Lightweight’ I struggled to blend it – even with a damp Beauty Blender.  The first time I applied it, I absolutely hated it, because it just seemed to sit there looking obvious.  After a little while though, it settled in and became a lot more natural looking.  It also has quite a strong scent, so if you are bothered by smells then you may not take to this BB Cream.  So although I didn’t love it to start with, it has definitely grown on me.  For the price though, I really don’t think it compares with other brands.  I will finish the tube, but I would not repurchase.

 

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Mono Eyeshadow in Explorer – £5:

I don’t know if I am just cheap (probably), but £5 seems a lot to spend on a single eyeshadow.  I think it would have to be pretty special for me to consider that good value, and this Topshop eyeshadow doesn’t really cut the mustard, unfortunately.  It is very pigmented, I’ll give it that, but it is very hard, and not at all blendable.

Lip Varnish in Merry Go Round – £9

Now this, I do not like.  The colour I picked looked nothing like the tube when it was actually applied, but that isn’t even the main problem. It is sticky and uneven, and difficult to remove.  It was all over my teeth and I ended up with some sort of lip halo on the inside of my lips where it just clung to the skin there.  Complete fail in my opinion.

Cheek Jelly in Reign – £7

This Cheek Jelly on the other hand is great.  The formulation worked really well on my dry skin, to give a lovely flushed,  just-been-for-a-run-look.  This jelly is glossy in the pot, but it goes on quite sheer and isn’t sticky on the skin.  It also lasted well throughout the day.  Compared to some blushers I own the price is a little high though.

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3D Curve mascara – £10:

I do love a good mascara. I have more than I can possibly use before they dry out beyond recognition, but still I buy more! I wasn’t expecting much from this Topshop offering, especially after the other failures, but I was pleasantly surprised.  The actual mascara is fairly nondescript, but the brush does allow you to get right into the base of the lashes, and it separates them as you go.  It’s a little more expensive than, say, a Rimmel or a Maybelline mascara, so I think that would stop me buying it again – it wasn’t that good.

 

Overall the Topshop beauty range is not a hit with me, I think the prices are too high for the quality of the products.  I can’t really see a reason to shop there for makeup, rather than Boots or Superdrug (when looking for affordable makeup).  I did notice while searching for links to include in this post, however, that most of these bits are not available on the actual Topshop website, and those that are have been included in their most recent sale.  Perhaps that should tell me something about my choices….

 

Have you ever tried any of the Topshop Beauty Range?  Did you like?

 

 

 

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Laura Geller Baked Gelato Swirl Blush – How I Love Thee

A little while ago I noticed quite a lot of buzz in the YouTube world around the Laura Geller Baked Gelato  Swirl Illuminator in Gilded Honey.    The first time I saw it swatched I pretty much squealed with excitement.  I immediately went online thinking I didn’t care how much it cost, just knowing that I HAD to have it.  Well, unfortunately the Internet had other plans.  Apparently my dream highlighter is not readily available in the UK (is any of the good stuff?) I was thrilled to find it on QVC, but it was already out of stock. Very sad face.

So, I’m sulking a little as I write this. Instead of oohing and aahing over the Baked Gelato Swirl Illuminator I’d like share with you one of my favourite blushers of the moment.  The Laura Geller Baked Gelato Vivid Swirl Blush in Rosewater. Now there’s a mouthful.   The formula of this blusher is something else; it’s creamy and soft, and the pigmentation is spot on.

 

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Look how pretty it is!  I’m easily pleased, so even the swirl design gets me all hot under the collar.

 

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Here is a swatch. Looking closely here you can see a little bit of shimmer, although it’s not overwhelming on the skin. (But then this comes from a highlighter obsessive) Some may find a light hand is enough for them, but I like to pack it on for a full on flush.

 

I’m keen to try some other Laura Geller products in the future.  Unfortunately I am on a self-imposed spending ban over the next couple of months, so it won’t be any time soon.

 

Have you tried any of the Laura Geller range? What brand or product would be on your shopping list, if money was no object?

Thanks for reading!

 

 

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Maybelline Superstay 24 Lip Colour – Does it Superstay?

Being fairly new to lipsticks and glosses (yes, really), the struggle of finding lip colours that last without drying my lips out is not something I have had to contend with previously.  But I can honestly say, the struggle is real.  As I have mentioned before, I always preferred not to use lipsticks (I’m including all lip products in this – other than lip balms and creams), because I used to find that they would cause my sensitive lips to become dry, and sore.

It wasn’t until this year at the grand old age of (ahem) that I finally thought I would give the world of lip products another go.  So, being me and not doing anything by halves, I promptly bought several thousand lipsticks, lip butters, and lip glosses.  For the most part, I haven’t had a problem.  I suspect that nothing has changed my end, but the formula of lipsticks etc, has come a long way since the dark ages.

Anyway, the point of this fascinating little ramble is that I recently purchased the Maybelline Superstay 24 Lipcolour.  I only bought one shade; their bestselling Soft Taupe.  Incidentally, I already have this colour in a different formulation, apparently I’m boring like that.

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The idea is that you apply the lipcolour, wait two minutes for it to dry, then slick the lip balm over the top to condition.   Maybelline state that it will then last up to 24 hours, with no crumbling, fading or transference.  So, how does it go on? Really smoothly actually; setting pretty quickly without feeling overly drying.  It didn’t bleed on me, and although not glossy, it isn’t too matte either.  Weirdly, the first time I wore it, I noticed that it disappeared a couple of hours later.  On subsequent occasions, however, it has lasted.  And lasted.  To the point that I actually struggled to get it off again, but there’s always something isn’t there?

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A Little Bit of Heaven for the Skin

Well, what a week.  My family and I were – very reluctant – hosts this week.  Not to Great Aunt Mabel, but to a particularly unpleasant stomach bug.  I won’t go into detail here, but suffice to say, it was not pretty (children under the age of seven find it hard to get to a bucket in time to throw up, or at all in some cases – who knew?!).  I therefore didn’t manage to work on any of the blog posts I had planned, but I did manage to get some sneaky online shopping done.

One of the items I bought was something I had been thinking about for a little while, but couldn’t decide if I actually needed (not that this usually stops me).  This little wonder:

 

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Konjac French Pink Clay Facial Sponge

 

I have never really been one for using a muslin, or the like, for cleansing, but this little sponge seems to promise so much more (exfoliating, deep cleaning, PH balancing and refining of pores to name a few). I do own a Clarisonic, which I use periodically when I need a proper clear out, and I really love it but I am wary of using it too often for fear of irritation.  The sponge, though, seems gentle enough to use every day and can be used with just water, or with a cleanser which is what I have been doing.

I wasn’t sure what to expect initially, the sponge arrives a little wet and felt quite slimy (ick).  Using it on my skin though is heavenly; like being caressed by little tiny angels (ok, that’s a bit much, but it does feel very nice).  It really is like a mini facial every morning.  I went for the French Pink Clay, but The Konjac Sponge Company offer different options, depending on your skin type.  You can read further info here if you are interested in finding out more.

 

Thanks for reading, and have a great weekend!

 

 

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My Super Speedy Summer Everyday Makeup

If I am truthful, and truthful is my middle name, I only wear ‘full – on’ makeup maybe once every fortnight.  Twice at a  push.  This is purely because of a lack of time, not desire.  I LOVE to do my makeup; I find it strangely therapeutic.  I adore choosing what I am going to use, and experimenting with different eye looks.  However, I am already late everywhere I go without spending an hour blending out my eyeshadow beforehand.  So here, my friends, are the products that I can pop on quickly for a fuss-free look, when I will be just pottering around and running errands.

 

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I start with my Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream, mixed with a little Dream Bronze Sunkissed Glow Perfector BB Cream.  The Bronze BB cream is designed to be used alone, but it is quite dark, even in Light/Medium, so I prefer to mix it with my favourite BB Cream.  Lovely Jubbly.  I then follow with the Freedom Makeup Pro Correct Palette.  This is a fairly new purchase, but I am really loving it for under my eyes and other areas that need a little more coverage.  It doesn’t completely cover my under eye circles – I have yet to find anything that does – what I like about it is the consistency. It is light and not at all drying, and I like being able to mix the exact shade that I need.  I choose not to set with any powder, because my skin can get very cakey if I am not careful.

Another new(ish) purchase is the Bourjois Aqua Blush in No.3 Pink Twice.  I am no stranger to cream blushers and cheek stains (I used the Body Shop lip and cheek tint for years, until quite recently), but this is the nicest I have ever used.  The colour is just right for my complexion (not the fairest of them all, but close) and it leaves a lovely hydrating little flush.  It doesn’t shift at all during the day either.  My bronzer of choice is the Body Shop Honey Bronze Bronzing Powder in No. 2.  This is a really lovely bronzer; it is subtle and buildable, and not at all glittery.  It looks nothing in the pan, the shade I have is only slightly darker than a face powder, but it is magical on the skin.  Next up is highlighter.  On ‘natural’ days I like to reach for my Makeup Academy Shimmer Highlighter in Pink Shimmer.  This has just the right amount of glow; which makes it visible, but not blinding.

To finish I curl my eyelashes – of course – and add a little bit of my current favourite mascara; Maybelline Big Eyes Rebel Black. I love this little guy.  It is thick, but not clumpy, and the little mini brush is perfect for the lower lashes.   I then follow with Maybelline Brow Drama in Dark Brown.  This is the only brow mascara-type product I have ever used (other than plucking them I have pretty much left them alone until recently), so I don’t know how it compares with other similar products.  I find that it gives me just enough colour to fill in any sparse areas, and holds without going rock-hard or flaky.

And that is it.  I can usually slap this little lot on in around five minutes, and be out the door in another 120 minutes or so (do you have any idea how long it takes to get a baby and a three year old ready? Ages, that’s how long).

Disclaimer:  Despite appearances, this post is not sponsored by Maybelline, I just happen to like quite a lot of their products.

Thanks for reading, as always!  Let me know in the comments below what your favourite quick-face products are, and do you switch it up depending on the season?

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My Morning Skincare Routine

I like to keeps things fairly simple in the morning.  With a baby that refuses to sleep through the night, I can’t say that I leap joyfully out of bed in the morning, so I need a quick and straightforward regime. I am currently using only three products, with the addition of various primers when I apply makeup.  I haven’t included those, because they change with my mood, and I don’t consider them part of my daily routine.

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 Lush Angels on Bare Skin cleanser

I wash my face in the shower in the am, so I like a cleanser that can be washed off without the need for fiddly cotton wool, or muslin cloths.  My skin cam be very dry, so foaming cleansers are out too. I discovered this lovely cleanser a few weeks ago, and, as I mentioned in my May Favourites, it – along with a couple of other changes that I made recently – has changed my skin for the better.  It starts off as a solid, and as water is mixed with it, a paste is formed, which gently cleanses and exfoliates the skin.  My only issue is the little lavender flowers, I’m not convinced they need to be there, and they mostly end up being washed down the plug hole because they don’t mix in with the rest of the cleanser.

Origins GinZing Moisuriser

This is a fabulous lightweight moisturiser, with a lovely fresh fragrance.  Origins claim that it brightens, and while I haven’t noticed that, I do find it to be hydrating without being greasy, so my skin is left feeling smooth but not slimy.  One thing to note though is the lack of SPF.

Origins GinZing Eye Cream

In my eternal quest for an eye cream that will magically make my dark circles disappear, I stumbled across this little guy.  It can be used twice a day, but I only use it in the morning as I have a separate night eye cream.  I find that it doesn’t work especially well under concealer, so I often skip it if I am doing a full face, because it almost goes lumpy.  Because it is illuminating it does make me look slightly more awake, and a little bit goes a long way.  I can’t vouch for its depuffing qualities as I don’t have a problem with eye bags or puffiness, and I have no idea if it has helped in the battle against fine lines – ask me again in 20 years.

Do you like to keep it simple in the morning, or do you like to pamper yourself before you face the day?

 

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Passing a Little Bit of Time

When I’m not playing with makeup, or reading about makeup, or watching Youtube videos about – yep you guessed it – makeup, I like to relax by watching a little bit of Stevie the TV.  We cancelled our Sky subscription a few months ago in a bid to save some money, and extended our existing Virgin subscription to give us pretty much the same channels, but at a slightly lower cost than Sky.  Now, this is all well and good, but I HATE the set up of Virgin (or Tivo, actually).  I thought I would get used to it, but I just can’t, so the upshot is that I no longer watch any ‘proper’ TV.  So, in order to fill my evenings I have had to scour Netflix and Amazon Instant for quality programmes.  So far I have binge watched Community, That 70s Show, The Following, Orange is the New Black, 3rd Rock from the Sun, and Short Poppies.  I also started to re-watch The Walking Dead (my all time favourite), but Amazon cut me off at season three.  Well, not literally, but seasons four and five are not free to watch, and I refuse to pay for them.

Anyway, I digress.  The reason for this post was to mention the film I watched last night; Wish I was Here.  It was written and directed by Zach Braff (or JD as you may also know him).  I wasn’t expecting much to be honest, despite the four stars it had on Netflix.  I can honestly say though, that it was fantastic.  It’s serious, but light hearted in places, funny, but also sad.  Just an all round mix of loveliness and humour(I could never be a film critic, could I?).  So if you haven’t already seen it, and fancy a bit of entertainment, then I highly recommend Wish I was Here.

What are your favourite shows to watch? What is your favourite genre of film, or TV?

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