Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Save vs Splurge | Makeup Must-haves Part 1

Having a full time job does have its perks and being able to splurge a little more on makeup is one of those perks. However, there does come a time when spending the extra Pounds on repurchasing my favourite high-end makeup products can become a little too much. That's why, for this post, I've searched high and low to find the perfect high street dupes and peeny saving equivalents for those coveted high end beauty buys!

Nars Sheer Glow Foundation vs Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation

For a couple of months now I have been loving Nars' Sheer Glow foundation (I use shade Mont Blanc), it's the perfect light formula foundation and mixes really well on my skin, giving the lovely dewey look as a finish. I researched a lot into this foundation before buying it and was definitely not disappointed when I tried it for the first time, the only slight down side to this foundation is the price - £30.50 can be a little on the steep side for most of us young 'uns! However, after much hype and a lot of resistance on my part, I have finally tried the Bourjois healthy Mix Serum (I have shade 51) and my god, do I love it. I've only had it a couple of days now, but already (in my mind at least) it's a pretty good high street dupe for my beloved Sheer Glow Foundation. For the considerable difference in price ( this is just £9.99) this foundation does a pretty decent job at replicating the qualities of the Nars foundation. I love a good dupe and honestly, this is one of the best I've seen - whether they meant for it to be this way or not!
You can buy Nars Sheer Glow foundation here and Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation here.

Benefit Erase Paste Concealer vs Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer 

As everybody who reads my blog will know, I am a massive Benefit fan. I own far too many Benefit products and can't help but buy more as they are released. One of my favourite Benefit products of all time has to be their Erase Pate Concealer (I use 1 - light). Erase Paste was the first Benefit product that I ever bought and I have stayed a loyal customer and re-purchaser of it since. It does wonders under the eyes and for those pesky spots and red areas that none likes having, but again this can come a little pricey at £17.50.  The penny saver concealer here is the beloved Lasting Perfection Concealer by Collection. Once again this is an amazing concealer; unlike the above with the two foundations, this concealer isn't a dupe for the Benefit one - it is however, a very good concealer in itself and bloody great for the price! The Lasting Perfection Concealer is a creamy liquid concealer that comes with a wand (for any of you who have been living under a rock and don't know what it is) , it has a long lasting formula and is brilliant at covering spots and those stubborn red / dark areas. At £4.19 this is the perfect concealer for those who don't want to splash out. You can buy Benefit's Erase Paste here and Collection's concealer here.

NARS Orgasm Blusher vs Rimmel Lasting Finish Soft Colour Blush Live Pink

Anyone who is anyone in the beauty blogging world will have heard of the NARS Orgasm blush. It's a gorgeous peachy pink with a golden shimmer and is most definitely known as a 'cult favourite'. Before I received 'Orgasm' for Christmas from one of my closest friends, It had been on my wish list for quite some time. At £21.50 a lot of us can't justify running to the shops to just buy one of these beauties willy nilly. Although it is an amazing blush and does have amazing pigmentation, it's not something that all of us beauty babes can afford, this is why I have found the high street equivalent. Rimmel is a brand we all know and love, but as far as I'm aware,  it's not very well known for it's blushes; I managed to stumble across this beautiful little pan of 'Live Pink' blusher the other day whilst shopping. It's a lovely pinky-rose toned blush which when on the cheeks, could pass of a something along the lines of NARS' Orgasm. It doesn't have the lasting power or quite the pigmentation like Orgasm does, but that's to be expected when this little gem only costs a fraction of the price at £3.99. Defnitely not a replacement, but could definitely pass as a space holder whilst we save up our pennies for the likes of a NARS blush! You can buy Nars' Orgasm blush here and Rimmel's Live Pink blush here.

Do you have any products that you think could pass as good high end dupes? I'd love for you to share in the comments!

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Friday, 23 May 2014

Top 5 Holiday Must Haves

Ibiza is now only a short 10 days away and I just had to pop in another holiday related post before I went. I've been trying to figure out for a very long time now, the minimal beauty items that I'll need to take with me. However, I think I've now finally figured out my top 5!


Probably not a 'beauty' must have - but definitely a holiday must have. Sunglasses are the ultimate style item and practical item for a holiday and I cannot wait to be wearing these Aviators from Primark (£2) under the scorching Spanish Sun!

Denman D90 Tangle Tamer*

To me, nothing beats a good hair brush and to me, this is the best hair brush. The Denman D90, better  known as the 'Tangle Tamer' is a brush that was specifically designed for kids and de-tangling their knotty manes after a swim or shower. I however, love this brush for myself. Forget the Tangle Teazer, this Denman brush is my go-to and I cannot live without it. The super-soft nylon bristles make brushing through the hardest of knots that much easier! It's going to be perfect for my holiday and will definitely make brushing my sea-weathered hair manageable.

Benefit Hoola Bronzer

Being Tanned is something that I always struggle with; my skin is as sensitive as a baby's and I burn like there's no tomorrow. I guarantee that I will be coming back from Ibiza looking like a lobster. No matter how bad my tan is though, I always need that pick-me up colour in my face and my Beneift  Hooler is my all-time favourite bronzer. It's the perfectly pigmented powder with a lovely matte finish   that just colours the cheeks brilliantly for that gorgeous bronzed look. Definitely another must-have for my holiday and every other day of the year!

Batiste Dry Shampoo - Pixie Lott Fun and Floral* 

Everyday is a battle with my hair. Do I wash it? Do I not? In Ibiza it will be no different; I'm not going to be wanting to waste a second of precious time in the sun by washing my hair. Batiste Dry Shampoo is the perfect remedy for this, a little spritz every morning and a good rough up of the roots and I'll be good to go. This gorgeously scented collaborative edition of Batiste with Pixie Lott* is filled with lovely hints of citrus and floral tones mixed with sandalwood and musk. This is the perfectly scented dry shampoo for a summers day, revitalising the roots and boosting the volume within your hair.

Garnier Ambre Solaire Golden Touch After Sun

An absolute must-have for a holiday in the sun - After sun is such an important part of skin care for sun exposure. With how crazy I burn, this is the ultimate product to keep my skin as healthy as it could be after a blast from those harmful rays. I've tried a lot of After Sun products but this Garnier Ambre Solaire has to be my favourite with it's 'golden touch' qualities as it not only soothes and moisturises sun exposed skin, but also enhances a tan. Perfect for pale people like me!

What are your top 5 holiday must haves?

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Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Review | Lauren's Way Solution 60 Tan*

I've used a multiple of 'instant' tans recently and application on them has been interesting, some good, some terrible; this Lauren's Way Solution 60 Rapid tan* is definitely one of the better. As some of you may know my little sister Holly is my go-to tanner and she can be quite opinionated when it comes to the process. This bottle, alike many others that I have seen, is a pump bottle which doesn't use aerosol. Now at first, I thought that this would be a good thing, but as I have found with tans, this isn't always best. This bottle, however, was quite clean, it didn't make a mess when pumped and a nice amount of product came out each time - a definite plus.
Working with tan can always be difficult, you have to work fast with working it in and those pesky white streaky areas can be a b*tch to sort out if you haven't worked fast enough. Being a mousse, the application of this tan was lovely; I always prefer mousse tans because I find they're easier to work with.  It was however, a little to quick to dry and my sister found it difficult to blend in - after a lot of scrubbing and blending we were finally happy with the result.

The first time that I applied this tan, I showered before and stupidly put some deodorant on. Now most of you fake tanning pros will probably all be sat at your screens tutting and shaking your head at that comment. I know, stupid thing to do! Let's just say, I was extremely shocked when after showering I came out with green arm pits. Yep - You read that right. Green. After just watching an episode of 'The Call Centre' where the tea lady Haley thought her arm pits had 'gone off' because they were green after tanning and me laughing so hard I almost cried, it was a bit of a home hitter when it happened to me. Karma truly is a b*tch. I showered again after realising the horror of my green pits and scrubbed until it hurt - I came out this time with whiter pits than I'd wanted but at least they weren't green! The rest of my body however was a lovely golden brown that looked really natural and I was really impressed.
Second application a week later and I am loving this tan yet again. Deodorant was tossed aside and my sister applied the tan to me as usual (I honestly don't know what I'm going to do when she heads of to Uni in a couple of months). Again the tan application was easy and even though it dries fast, if you work fast it's lovely to blend and work with.

 I've been so impressed with this Lauren's Way Solution 60 Instant tan* it gives such a lovely colour even after leaving on for just an hour and looks really natural, which is always the best result wanted from a tan. You can get Lauren's Way tan in selected Superdrug stores and online here.

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Sunday, 18 May 2014

The Dangers of Infected Makeup! - Feat EcoHydra Alcohol-Free Antibacterial Hand Sanitiser*

Have you ever dipped your finger into an eye shadow pot in Boots or Superdrug and wondered how many more people have done that as you applied it to your cheeks or to the back of your hand to test?

 How many times have you picked up a lipstick tester and applied it to your lips without thinking?

We have all believed for a while now that testers within beauty stores are the best things; easy to swatch and match to your skin tone. But have you ever thought how many other thousands of people have access to that same tester day-in-day out? Using testers is something that all of us girls think is just harmful fun; it saves our pennies on products that don't suit us by allowing us to 'try before we buy'.  But is it actually harmful? A survey (which was carried out over a whopping two years) has shown that cosmetic testers in stores all around are actually crawling with germs including E-Coli.
It was even stated that you could technically 'catch' diseases and infections such as Herpes through testing a lipstick on your lips that had been previously used by someone with the infection. Let's be honest though, who really thinks that using a tester straight on the face is a good idea?! I definitely don't! Even if I never thought that testers could carry so many germs and be 'dirty', I've certainly never used any testers on my face before. To me that is a massive no and now hearing this news, it's even more of a solid rule.

Ecohydra (the most effective hand sanitiser on the market*) is now calling for health warnings and makeup test procedures to be placed next to testers in cosmetic stores. Their point is not that it has anything to do with the stores, but the consumers poor hygiene - let's be honest, how many of you clean your hands before testing products? I know I can't put my hands up to that. Testers can become contaminated very quickly and with customers not necessarily washing their hands before swatching it can become messy in those little pots and pans. It's true what they say - coughs and sneezes really do spread diseases!

The lovely people at EcoHydra have come up with some top tips for make up testing to keep us all safe and disease free:

* Use EcoHydra hand sanitiser before and after use of a tester
* Avoid directly testing products onto your face, use the back of your hand or arm.
* If a tester looks particularly grim or dirty, ask the sales assistant for another - at the end of the day they're going to want you to buy the product!

EcoHydra Alcohol-Free Antibacterial Hand Sanitiser* is a foam hand sanitiser that has been approved by the NHS and even NASA, killing up to 99.9999% of bacteria and leaving as little as only 10 germs on the hands. Considering the average pair of 'clean' hands can be carrying up to a crazy 10 million germs, this Hand Sanitiser is perfect for every hand cleaning needs! It dries extremely quickly by air drying naturally which is a benefit of this product being alcohol-free. It's also enriched with Aloe Vera (a natural moisturiser) making it perfect for every day use.  You can pick up a bottle of EcoHydra Hand Sanitiser in Boots or online here for £2.49.

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Friday, 16 May 2014

NOTD | Nails Inc Birthday treats!

The lucky thing that she is, my sister recently received these three gorgeous Nails Inc Nail Polishes for her Birthday last month. I've always wanted to try Nails Inc polishes and this is just my perfect opportunity! Holly's friend picked well! These three polishes are perfect summery pastels and would look amazing with a tan.

My favourite has to be the gorgeous lilac (far right) as it is just a stunning pastel and looks so nice on the nail. 
What do you think? Have you tried Nails Inc Polishes too?

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Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Life Update #1


I haven't done one of these posts in a very long time and as I haven't had much time this weekend to prepare a 'proper' post (sorry!), I thought I'd write a little 'my week in photos' type post to give you all an update on what I've been getting up to!

Met some new friends whilst queueing 11 hours to see McBusted in Cardiff - I was so close to Dougie! - UV face paint is amazing!

Selfie with a Biore nose strip! - I met Superman in Swanage! - Filming videos for youtube!

As you can see I've had an eventful couple of weeks and have to apologise for my absence some days on my Blog and Youtube. I can't wait to get back into the swing of things and bring you along with me!

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Friday, 9 May 2014

Work Essentials | Beauty

Ever since I started working full time, just before Christmas, I've been missing my daily routine of waking up when I want, experimenting with different makeup styles and having all day to just work with my blog. Don't get me wrong, I love my job now, but there are definitely some things that just aren't the same. For one,  my makeup stash here is particularly small compared to that at home, however, I make the most of it and obviously there are just some things that I cannot live without.

Soap and Glory - Hand Food

Tapping away at a keyboard all day can make my hands extremely dry so I always make sure that I have a tube of Hand Food on my desk. It's a miracle worker with my skin and leaves them feeling extra smooth and soft, the perfect pick up for when I'm needing a little pit of palm TLC. Hand Food is one of my favourite hand creams as it is with many other beauty bloggers and is just lovely with its shea butter, macadamia oil and marshmallow scents. The other quality that just adds to this perfect little tube is that it isn't greasy - such a bonus when I'm needing to get back to work sharpish!

MAC - Studio Finish Concealer

There is nothing worse than having a pesky spot pop up halfway through the day and not having anything to cover it with, or having a makeup malfunction and needing a little bit of colour re-added to freshen things up and save the day. Having my trusty MAC Studio Finish concealer at my desk is such a life saver, it's such a great concealer and is perfect for touch ups. I use my Benefit Boiing concealer in the morning before work, but I definitely think  that this MAC concealer is perfect for touch ups and it's long lasting too which is an added bonus!

Benefit - Hello Flawless Oxygen WOW Foundation - Sample Size

I don't know about you guys, but I find there is always an opportunity for me to need a bit of foundation; not just for day-day top ups but just for those evenings after work where you need to freshen up your face before going to a works gathering at the pub or if you're going straight on to somewhere else. I find this little sample size bottle of Benefit's marvelous foundation perfect for the job - even though it's a tiny 5ml, it goes a long way and has lasted me quite a while already! It's always worth picking up sample sizes of foundation if you can for this purpose alone, it's so much better than lugging around a full sized product!

LUSH - Bubblegum Lip Scrub

Lush is loved for a lot of its products, but my favourite (by far) has to be their Bubblegum lip scrub. My lips can get quite dry throughout the day and a lip scrub is always something that I need to use to get them back to being lovely and smooth. Lush's Bubblegum Lip Scrub is natural (made from sugar) and works wonders on the lips, it also - as you can probably tell - tastes just like bubble gum and as it's made of sugar is edible (many a pot has been slowly nibbled on when a sugar craving hits).

Maybelline - Great Lash Mascara

This mascara is a great little carry-around item, it has a great formulation and has a small wand with a nicely spaced brush spooley, which is honestly a must have for a touch-up mascara. I don't use this mascara on a daily basis - I have other branded mascaras for my every day look, however this really is a great product for those touch ups throughout the day or for a little extra before the end of work (or when it's needed). This mascara has been a favourite of mine since I started wearing makeup properly back when I was 16, my Mum always had a tube of this lying around and I always used to steal it!

MAC Cremeshene Lipstick - Shy Girl

A trusty nude MAC lipstick is always a must have in the work makeup essentials. Shy Girl is the newest of my nudes and I am constantly picking it up at the moment - it's just perfect for my 'work face' (as I like to call it) and as a Cremesheen it's so hydrating throughout the day. More MAC lipsticks will definitely be added to the shopping cart soon!

What do you have on your desk at work or what do you keep in your school makeup bag?

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Tuesday, 6 May 2014

OOTD | Flowers and Skulls

The sun has crept out for the day again! I can't tell you how alive I feel when I wake up and see the sun peeping through my blinds and I can feel the heat against my window. A little bit of sun always makes me feel fresh and ready to make the most of the day! The other day I popped on this little ensamble and headed out for a walk with my boyfriend around Lacock.

Sunglasses: Primark
Dress: Topshop
Jacket: New Look 
Bag: Zara
Shoes: Dorothy Perkins
Scarf: Alexander McQueen

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Sunday, 4 May 2014

The Fragrance Shop Discovery Box*

Recently I was asked to take a look at the newest 'Discovery Box*' by The Fragrance Shop, I'd never heard of this subscription box before and was excited when it dropped onto my doormat for me to snoop through. As a concept I wasn't too sure about this box at first, but after reading more about it and 'discovering' what was in this discovery box, I realise it's actually quite a smart idea. The Fragrance Shop Discovery Box comes with seven new fragrance samples for you to try, the perfect way to find the new signature scent for you. At £25 for a years subscription (thats 4 boxes, one every quarter) it's not all that bad. I've really enjoyed this box and am thinking of subscribing myself.

In this Box there were some great samples including Ellie Saab's 'L'Eau Couture' which has some gorgeous citrus top notes and has to be my favourite of the box. The box also includes other great scents like Thierry Mugler 'Alien' and Guerlain 'La Petite Robe Noire Couture' which is a gorgeous rose and raspberry scent. The Discovery Club also sends a variety of male scents, not really my taste - I usually tend to stick to the girly ones personally! But it's also a great way to pick out the special scent for that special male someone in our life.

This Discovery Club box also has a couple of vouchers at the back of it's brochure, usually one for each of the sample scents. This is such a lovely idea and has definitely helped me branch out with trying new perfumes.

You can subscribe to The Fragrance Shop's Discovery Club here.

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Friday, 2 May 2014

Guest Post | DIY Body Scrub | Danielle's Blog


I'm Danielle, you may already know me if you have been following Beky for awhile, I've featured in a couple of posts and a video. My blog is over at Danielle Saint  and has all sorts of mainly just my ramblings about products and fashion, I'd love it if you would go and have a look. Also just like to say a big thank you to Beky for finally letting me contribute content for her lovely blog. 

Today I thought I'd share with you a DIY Beauty Post which is a series I have running over on my blog. I think DIY beauty is great I think it is great to be able to combine kitchen and household ingredients to make something that gives you a little pick-me-up or pamper. Today's DIY is a body scrub, body scrubs are great as well as being really important to help maintain smooth and silky skin. It works by scrubbing away dead skin cells and removes dirt and oil on the skins surface using tiny abrasive granules. All types of skin benefits from skin scrubs.

This scrub must be applied to damp skin so it is great to use in the shower. 

You will need

1/2 cup of coarse sea salt 
1/2 cup of olive olive 
Zest from 1 Lemon 
Zest from 1 Orange 
2 Tablespoons of Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice 
2 Tablespoons of Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice 

Combine the oil and juices in a small mixing bowl and mix. Next add the sea salt and zest then mix together. Then transfer into chosen container, I like to put mine in a mason jar with a ribbon and give it as a gift or into a plastic tub and keep in the shower to use at my leisure. 

This is a really nice fruity body scrub and leaves your skin feeling very soft and silky. I like to use this scrub before shaving to remove dry and dead skin cells, and my shave has never been closer. 

Don't forget to pop over to my blog and say hello. 

Lots of Love 

I really hope you take the time to visit Danielle's blog - it's a great little read! If you'd like to be featured on my blog as a guest poster please visit here or send me an email at beky.lou94@gmail.com 

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