Current Makeup Hits and Misses | April 2016

Continue reading “Current Makeup Hits and Misses | April 2016”

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer in Luminous Bronze Light | Review and Swatches

Continue reading “Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer in Luminous Bronze Light | Review and Swatches”

FOTD | Go-to Night Out Makeup

If you’re at university, or you have been, you’ll understand the feeling that you may not have that much time to do your makeup before a ‘spontaneous’ night out. Or maybe you’re not one to spend hours getting ready. Recently I have found my favourite look for a night out that I can throw together pretty quickly, and as an added bonus, it looks really nice in photography. So if you’re into the bold lips, lashes and brows, keep on reading…

I’m always one to focus most of my time on my base. When it comes to a night out, I rarely skip using the Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer as it keeps my makeup in place better than any other product I’ve tried. For foundation lately, my favourite has to be L’Oreal True Match – this is a great budget alternative for my beloved Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk (check out my full review here). I add the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer anywhere I may need some extra coverage, and I also take a shade lighter under my eyes and on the high points of my face to highlight. I set everything in place with a powder, either the Mac Mineralize Skinfinish Natural or the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light. I also found it important to add colour and definition to the cheeks or your face can look pretty flat in pictures. I bronze up the skin with Nars Laguna Bronzing Powder, and have been loving the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit to add shadows under the cheekbones and on the temples, and I also like using the lighter shades to set my under eye concealer and any highlighting I have done. I’ll top the look off with a little powder highlighter – my favourite recently has been the Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Beige. I add some to the tops of my cheeks, the tip of the nose, the cupids bow and the chin. 


This eye makeup is incredible simple and easy to achieve. I start by defining the crease, and I do this by building up different shades of orangey-browns, increasingly getting darker to achieve a blended and blown out look. Any matte browns will work for this, but I tend to reach for my Makeup Geek Eyeshadows, in particular Peach Smoothie, Creme Brulee and Cocoa Bear. I will then pack a shimmery shade all over the lid, and my absolute favourite for this is Mac Tan Pigment. It catches the light beautifully and is amazing for any warm-toned look. I then create a winged out eyeliner with the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper, apply lashings of mascara, and then a pair of false lashes. These will help your eyes really pop and add instant glamour to any look. The pair I’ve used in this look are the Eylure no. 121 which are thick, fluffy and are longer on the outer corner, which help to emphasise the winged-out shape of this look. I’ll then run some of the shades I used in my crease along the lower lash line to balance out the look. To finish off the eyes, I filled in my brows with the Anastasia Dip Brow Pomade in Blonde, going for quite a strong brow which I think works well with this look. 

Finally, the star of the show, the bold lip. I find that I can wear any colour with this look, but my favourite shade to wear by far is a bright pink. I’m definitely a lipstick addict, so I have several favourites, but the shade I went for in this look is Mac Viva Glam Miley Cyrus which I have a full post on here. With a bright lip, you tend to need a little added colour on the cheeks, so for blush my go to is Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Exposed as it is a no-brainer shade that goes with any look.















































I hope you enjoyed this look, and perhaps if you’re not so into bold lips this may have inspired you to give one a go? I think they are so flattering and will also reduce your getting ready time as the eyes really don’t need as much work. Let me know your go-to look for a night out below! 

RachelElizabeth

What’s In My Makeup Bag – New York Edition! | Blogmas Day #14






















The time has finally come for my birthday trip to New York! This afternoon I am jetting off to NYC with the boyf to celebrate my 21st birthday! This was actually my present from my parents, and it is possibly the best a girl can ask for. However, I have committed myself to Blogmas, and I really want to keep up with posting everyday, so I actually plan on scheduling enough posts until I return on Thursday! I thought I would start off with what makeup I am planning on taking on my trip, as these are some of my favourite posts to read – everyone loves to be nosey…


I will begin by saying that I am by no means a light packer – I like to have options. Having said that I don’t think that I have gone too overboard; I will leave that one up to you.

Face
Because the days will be long, I definitely wanted to bring a primer. One of my all time favourites is the Max Factor Facefinity All Day Primer (full post here), and as I’ve almost ran out, I thought I would be able to finish it off on the trip. I then decided to bring my tried and true L’Oreal True Match Foundation (review here)- I am bringing two shades (W1 and W4) because I fake tan, and once it fades I need to mix the shades. I am also bringing two concealers: the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Custard for blemishes and general imperfections and the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer in Fair to highlight the face. Moving on to powder products, I am bringing the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light (post here) to set my makeup, and the Nars Bronzing Powder in Laguna and the Mac Blush in Harmony for general bronze and contour goodness (check out my recent post for more details on this!). I decided to bring two blushes – my all time favourite Tarte Amazonion Clay Blush in Exposed and Mac Mineralize Blush in Warm Soul. These are quite similar colours, but Exposed is matte and Warm Soul is very shimmery. Finally, I’m bringing my current favourite highlighter theBalm Mary Lou-Manizer (post here).





















Eyes
This category is one that I feel I have actually been quite selective. I had to bring my trusty Nars Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base to keep my eyeshadow looking flawless all day, and I also decided to bring the Estee Lauder Pure Colour Stay On Shadow Paint in Chained for days when I want a quick easy option. I decided to stick to one palette that has everything I need, and this had to be the Lorac Pro Palette – I have a full review and swatches here. This is still quite new to my collection but it is probably my favourite palette, and I know that it will serve me well. Next is the Urban Decay Ink for Eyes liquid eyeliner and for mascara I am bringing the Bourjois Volume 1 Seconde Mascara. And of course I am bringing an essential to my makeup routine – my Tweezerman Eyelash Curlers and my current eyebrow pencil, the Revlon Brow Fantasy in Dark Blonde. As a bit of a glamorous addition to my makeup for my trip I thought I would bring a pack of my favourite eyelashes, the Ardell Demi Wispies.  






















Lips
Probably my favourite category, and one that I always struggle to pack for! So I decided to bring the basic choices. For my nude lip option, I have picked the Kiko Precision Lip Pencil in 300 Caffe Latte and the Mac Lipstick in Kinda Sexy. This is one of my favourite go-to combinations at the moment. For a bold red, I chose another Kiko Lip Pencil in 306 Geranium Red and my current obsession, the Sephora Cream Lip Stain in 01 Always Red. In case I’m feeling a bold lip that isn’t red, I decided to bring Mac Impassioned, which is another fave of mine. And finally, the newest lipstick in my collection, Tom Ford Leonardo (full post here) just because it’s stunning. For a lip liner to accompany that, I’m bringing Mac Beet Lip Pencil

Brushes
The final category is tools. For ease, I will list the brushes I am taking, and if you want to know more about my favourites, check out my posts on brushes here. So from left to right we have: the Real Techniques Setting Brush, the Sigma F25 Tapered Face Brush, the Real Techniques Contour Brush, the Real Techniques Multitask Brush, the Sigma E35 Tapered Blending Brush, the Real Techniques Buffing Brush, the Mac 239 Brush, the Real Techniques Blush Brush and the Mac 217 Brush. I know this may seem like a lot of brushes, but it means that I will have everything I could possibly need on my trip.

I apologise for the incredibly wordy post, but I hope that you enjoyed having a nosey in my makeup bag. Stay tuned tomorrow for all the skincare goodies that will be travelling across the Atlantic with me. 

RachelElizabeth

Top 5 Luxury Products | Blogmas Day #6

























It’s that time of year when you can subtly ask your loved ones for those products that you really can’t justify spending your hard-earned cash on. Or maybe you do want to part with your cash but you So today, I wanted to bring to you my favourite luxury products, and ones I think that are really worth it…


We’ll begin with one that I have continually praised – the Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer (full review here). This stuff is magic. If you have oily skin or you have trouble with your foundation’s longevity in general, then you will love this. This was such a game-changer in my makeup routine that this is my third bottle, and as you can see from the picture, it is on its last legs. When I feel a bit guilty about how much it costs and how quickly I go through it, it is also the perfect product for special occasions. The other base product that had to be mentioned was the Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation (I have also reviewed this in full here). This is the closest to perfect foundation that I have found. It has a natural finish – somewhere in the middle of matte and dewy. It lasts incredibly on me (especially when paired with the aforementioned primer), and best of all, looks stunning in photographs. This is another product I save for special occasions, but if I could afford to, I would wear this on an everyday basis. 
Moving on to colour products, the first I will mention is the Nars Bronzing Powder in Laguna which I dedicated a whole post to recently here. Nars products aren’t quite as expensive as the other brands I’ve mentioned, but it is definitely still luxury. For my complexion, this is the perfect shade to warm up the skin, and the texture and longevity are both incredible. For eyes, the Charlotte Tilbury Colour-Coded Eye Shadow Palette in Dolce Vita is the ultimate in luxury. I definitely plan on writing a whole post on this soon, as it is so stunningly pigmented and perfect for this time of year. She has several different quads if these warm tones aren’t your thing, and they are all beautiful. The final product I will mention are the Tom Ford Lipsticks. I have a few, but the one photographed is Wild Ginger (full post here) which is an extremely vibrant orangey-red. The formulation of these are so pigmented and creamy, and are just a pleasure to apply and wear.
These may not be something that you can easily go out and purchase on a whim, but if you’re in the market to splurge or want to treat someone with something very special, then these would be what I recommend. What are your favourite luxury products?
RachelElizabeth

An Unexpected Combination | Blogmas Day #5

























I am all about mixing foundations. Whether it’s to get the perfect shade, or getting the best out of two formulas, sometimes you just have to in order to find the perfect base. Recently I mixed two foundations that were from opposite ends of the spectrum both in terms of finish and and price-point, and I ended up discovering and absolute gem…

The foundations in question are the Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation (full review here) and my recent favourite Max Factor Skin Luminizer Foundation (also full post here). If you read my posts on these, you can see that these are both favourites of mine, but for very different reasons. The Hourglass offering is perfect for oily skins – it is incredibly mattifying, long-lasting and has great coverage. In opposition, the Max Factor foundation is dewy skin in a bottle, and has light to medium coverage. I have the former in a pale shade for when I am sans-fake tan, and the latter in a much darker shade. 
My tan was slightly faded, so I needed to create my own custom colour. The reason I choose these two was because, surprisingly, they have a very similar texture. They both are slightly moussey and whipped. Once I mixed them together on the back of my hand, and applied it with a Real Techniques Buffing Brush, was when the magic happened. The result was a natural-looking finish – right in the middle of matte and dewy. It also lasted perfectly throughout the day, and stayed looking luminous and fresh. 
I hope this post inspired you, if you don’t already, to start experimenting and mix your foundations as you may just uncover something incredible. What’s your favourite unexpected beauty trick? 

RachelElizabeth

FOTD | Halloween Edition – Pop Art


























I know Halloween has been and gone, but I still thought it would be fun to share with you what I wore. I had a lot of fun creating this pop art inspired look, and although it took me a long time, I definitely think that the end result was worth it. If you’re interested in how I did this look, keep reading…


I started with my standard foundation routine – the Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer to ensure extra longevity, my L’Oreal True Match in W4 followed by the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Custard under my eyes and on any blemishes. I then set this all in place with the Mac Mineralize Skinfinish Natural in Medium Plus

Now onto the fun part. I primed the eyes using my standard Nars Smudgeproof Pro Prime Eyeshadow Primer. I then used the hot pink out of the Urban Decay 15th Anniversary Palette (no longer available but any pink would work) all over my eye lid, and created a winged out effect using an angled brush. I then lined my eyes using the Mac Blacktrack Fluidline and extended the line to reach where I had winged the eyeshadow to. With the same liner, I outlined the shape of the eyeshadow, to create a slight cut crease look, and connected it to the inner corner. I lined the waterline with the Nyx Jumbo Eyeshadow Pencil in Milk to create a bright eyed cartoon effect, then lined under the lashline with the fluidline. Next up was the eyebrows. I started by creating the basic shape with a black eyeliner and then went back over that with the fluidline to make sure it was really dark. I created the expression marks in the crease and in between the eyebrows by making a sad expression and following my natural lines. 

The tear was pretty simple – I drew the basic shape with a bright blue eyeliner pencil and then set it in place with a corresponding eyeshadow. I then lined that again with the fluidline. Next up was the lips – I started by lining and filling in my lips with my trusty Kiko Precision Lip Pencil in 306 and topped it with the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet in Hot Pepper to create a vibrant and long lasting lip shade. I then lined the lips with the fluidline. Next up was the dots – the part I was worried about the most. I used my favourite Maybelline Color Drama Intense Velvet Lip Pencil in Red Essential as the tip was a bit thicker than a regular pencil which actually made drawing on the dots quite easy. They may not have been the neatest – I struggled on my cheeks where my skin was slightly more squidgy – but I think it worked for the overall effect. The finishing touches were to line the perimeter of my face with the gel liner and then spray my hair yellow with coloured hairspray (link here).

So I hope you enjoyed this post. If you were interested in what outfit I wore, it was an aztec style dress from Missguided – but I think any bright dress could have worked for this look. What did you go as for halloween? 

I Changed My Mind…

If you’ve been reading for a while, you may remember that I gave the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light a somewhat mediocre review (read it here). Now I don’t quite know whats changed in the past 7 months, but my opinion on this product has definitely changed a significant amount. Therefore I thought it necessary to bring you volume 2 of this review…

Let’s recap to when I used this product before. My skin was considerably oilier and I had far more imperfections. I thought that this added no coverage and didn’t aid at all to longevity. Forget everything I said. I have finally seen what the hype about this product is. What I have found is that this is at its best when paired with a more dewy foundation – I’ve been pairing it often with Clinique Even Better Makeup. Something about this combination gives me the most glowy and perfect looking skin and I am obsessed (expect a post fully dedicated to that foundation in the near future). It smoothes out the skin and diffuses any imperfections and leaves the skin looking like skin.

What this powder is also wonderful for is to set your under-eye area. Sometimes when using a full coverage powder that you used to set your face makeup under the eye it can cake and settle into fine lines. This powder is so finely milled (excuse the cliche blogger phrase) that it diffuses and perfects what ever product is underneath, and is lightweight enough to be ideal for the delicate eyes.























Now the only downside is that this is a very expensive product. I would say that all you oily-skinned gals should probably steer clear of this one, but if you’re into that glowy look then you might want to save your pennies and give this a try. Have you tried any of the Ambient Lighting Powders? 

-RachelElizabeth

Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation Review

Hourglass always have products that I’m pining for – their releases send the blogging world into a frenzy and it seems like everyone and their mother is loving something from them right now. I’ll say this as a warning: this is an expensive brand, especially here in the UK. But the products that I have tried are incredible. Today I bring you one of their foundations – oily girls, listen up…

Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation


Claims:
Consider Immaculate the miracle foundation for oily skin. This breakthrough liquid to powder formula absorbs oil, camouflages imperfections, and delivers a long-lasting velvet matte finish—without the need for touch-ups. In a consumer study, Immaculate’s advanced formula was shown to target oily, acne-prone skin. 

Side note – the claims list is quite lengthy on the Hourglass website. Read more about what the brand has to say about this foundation here.

Verdict
First off, this is an absolute godsend for oily skin. I have struggled with foundations staying on my skin for years and this is by far the best I have found. What I like a lot about this foundation is that it isn’t too thick or too full coverage like many of the foundations targeting oily skin (Estee Lauder Double Wear or Revlon Colorstay for example). It provides a medium coverage and is surprisingly buildable – when I first tried it I expected it to start looking cakey but somehow it doesn’t. The lasting power is pretty impressive – I can easily expect this to last a full day without touching up, but as with all foundations I find it performs better with the usual precautions: primer, powder, setting spray etc. It has a slightly mousse-like texture and dries to a powder finish. It contains no SPF, meaning it will have no flashback in photography. I found that in flash photography it looks great, so would be great for a night out. 

In terms of packaging, it is just what you would expect from a product from Hourglass; the signature gunmetal in the lid and the gorgeous slightly shimmery silver bottle. The pump is great – it dispenses a nice amount of product and keeps it sanitary which is ideal for a foundation targeted towards acne-prone skin. 

However, there are some negative aspects of this foundation that I need to address. Little does not go a long way with this product. I find myself having to use multiple pumps to cover my entire face and with such an expensive product like this that is a little bit worrying. It comes with the standard amount of foundation (30ml/1 fl.oz) so you aren’t getting much product for your money. You should definitely steer away from this if you have dry skin – it isn’t as bad as some foundations on highlighting dry patches but it isn’t going to do them any favours. 

In terms of the skin benefits that the website claim it to have, I can’t comment. I bought this in my natural skin tone, and I only use this in between self tanning. It is interesting though that many women have claimed that their skin improved in terms of oiliness, blemishes and texture after using this foundation for 4 weeks – I can definitely say that I have not had any adverse reactions and it hasn’t broken me out. 























All in all, if you have oily skin and you really struggle finding a foundation that will wear well on you, I would highly recommend saving up and giving this a go. If you live near an hourglass counter, or the next time you go in, definitely ask for a sample as it is an extremely pricey purchase. Next on my hourglass wish list are the ambient lighting blushes – how have I not purchased any yet??

RachelElizabeth

Best of | Primers

Primers are a necessary step in my makeup routine – I have both oily skin and eyelids and have always had problems with longevity and my makeup creasing or not applying well. I’ve tried quite a few primers now, and I think I have found the best of the best…























Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer
Lets get the price out of the way first… This is a pricey option at £52 – although $52 in the States making it much more cost effective if you can buy it there. However, this is absolutely worth the money. Using face primers in the past, I never really saw too much of a difference, but this creates the smoothest base to apply makeup on. It isn’t a silicone based primer so it doesn’t leave your face feeling squeaky clean but rather leaves it smooth and perfected. What I love most about this primer though, is how it extends the length of wear of my makeup. When I wear this primer, my makeup will stay on all day without fail. The pump is also great – it dispenses the perfect amount of product to cover the entire face. I can find no fault with this product, and if you can fit this into your budget, even as a product only to be used for special occasions, I would 100% recommend. 

Again this isn’t the most budget-friendly eye primer on the market, but it definitely delivers. I had been using the Urban Decay Primer Potion for years -it’s the only other eye primer I have ever used. However, recently I wasn’t satisfied with the results. I found that my eyeshadows weren’t blending that well and it just didn’t last as long as I wanted. I decided to try this because it’s massively hyped in the blogging world, and it has definitely lived up to my expectations. It has a doe-foot applicator, making it really easy to apply, and has a similar texture to the hourglass primer, in that it’s creamy and smooths out the eyelid. My eyeshadow never creases when I use this, and without primer my eyeshadows always crease. It makes my eyeshadow stay on all day, and it really is just great.

If you have trouble with your makeup staying on, these are must-haves. I see these as investments – why spend all this money on makeup if it isn’t going to last on your face? Beauty addict logic…

-RachelElizabeth