January 23, 2013

Reviews: bareMinerals Well-Rested face and eye brightener and Ready Eyeshadow in The Perfect Storm

bareMinerals Ready Eyeshadow in The Perfect Storm-£19 / bareMinerals Well-Rested Face and Eye Brightener -£22

bareMinerals is one of those beauty brands that you can really rely on if you are looking for good-quality products that are kind to your skin. Up until now, I have only used their blush as part of my daily make-up routine, but after trying these two products that is probably about to change.

Two of my very good friends are always raving about these eyeshadow palettes and say that  the colours are super long-lasting as they tend to stay in place without smudging. 

I wanted to put their theory to the test, so I went for a palette called The Perfect Storm, which contains a bright white eyeshadow called Cumulus and a dark taupe shade in Tempest. 

At first glance, the white eyeshadow appears quite scary as I would usually use beige or shimmering golden tones if I was going to wear a pale base. But when it's blended with the dark taupe it creates the most beautiful smoky eyes. 

I applied the white shade in the corner of my eyes which helped to make them appear brighter and I then added Tempest until it faded gradually to the other corner of my eye. So my decision is made...the taupe smoky eye is definitely going to be my staple Spring Summer look!

Another bareMinerals product I have been pretty impressed with is the Well-Rested Face and Eye Brightener.

 I tend to be quite a night owl these days, so I probably don't get as much sleep I'm supposed to which means this product is going to be my latest skin saviour!

So far, I am loving the texture as it is smooth and silky and the fact that it is fuss free in terms of it's application is always a winner. You simply twist the end of the pen and away you go!

Since using this highlighter on my cheeks and eyes, I have noticed a big difference in the way my skin looks and feels. It appears much more radiant and has definitely helped to mask my tired eyes!

I would also recommend this product as a primer, as it contains light-reflecting particles to even out the skin tone. If you are interested in trying out these products for yourself you can find them both here.

Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below?

Sarah x

January 16, 2013

Places to visit in London #1 Portobello Road Market

As I'm living in London now, I thought I would try to feature one amazing place to visit each week. Whether its an exhibition (I'm dying to see the Valentino one), a restaurant, nice place for drinks or great places to shop, I figured you might want to know about it as there's so much to see and do in London.

My friend Claire and I visited the market on a Saturday, which was pretty busy (always expected in London), but the atmosphere was great and the food markets were absolutely buzzing! Whilst wandering around and rummaging our way through each stall, we also picked up some amazing street food to have whilst shopping, the perfect combination!

If you have never paid a visit to portobello market this may hopefully tempt you...

My photo diary:
1. At Ladbroke Grove tube station which is the nearest to the market entrance! The start of the market is clearly signposted but if in doubt follow the people.
2. Thee most amazing owl bag! Really wanted to purchase this beautiful find but living in London means I'm on a strict budget and so far the January shopping ban is going pretty well.
3. Here's a snap of my delightful friend Claire wearing a vintage fur headband that we came across on the market. There was a huge pile of them and they were only £5 each.Did someone say bargain?
4. Yes that's me looking overly excited at the churos I'm about to devour! They a little like doughnuts but in crinkled chip form and there's a little pot of melted chocolate for dipping too.I would highly recommend!
5. Once you've walked though the market you will find that there's little walkways and doors that lead to little indoor antique markets. Great for picking up some lovely shabby chic homewares or a unique vintage find. Tip: As many items are antique you may be surprised when you ask for the price! (As I soon found out!)
6. A beautiful floor-length vintage dress, covered in intricate sequins and bead work. You can tell by my face that I wanted it so bad!
7. More vintage wares from the antique markets, I love a good teacup and saucer.
8.If there's one thing that Portobello road is not short of, it's jewellery! If you have something particular in mind that you are looking to buy such as a ring, I would advise you to be strict and selective as there's too many for one pair of eyes! Moroccan style jewellery seemed to be pretty popular as well as vintage style clip-on earrings and fine, pretty chains.

9. Bags, bags and even more bags! Some great quality leather ones and of course, some embellished evening ones too.

10. Maybe you only have time for a whistle-stop tour around London? If thats the case,make sure you pay a visit to Hirst Antiques (59 Pembridge Road Notting Hill, UK W11 3HN). It's such an Aladins cave filled with wonderful jewelled treasures! I assure you, you won't be disappointed. Some of the items have been featured in magazines such as Vogue so it's definitely worth a look!

Another picture of the amazing jewellery at Hirst antiques...

I hope you have enjoyed my short but sweet guide to Portobello road, London.

Feel free to comment below if you have any questions about getting there etc, or let me know if you've been to the market before?

Sarah x

January 11, 2013

B is for Beautiful: Exclusive to Superdrug

Since moving to London, I've been lucky enough to attend some really exciting beauty events and launches. Last week I was given the opportunity to go to the launch event of Superdrugs new skincare and makeup range, B is for Beautiful.

Not only did I find that the collection is really purse-friendly and between £3.50-£13.99. There's also lots of variety to suit different skin types and tones as well as skincare that will cater for many different age groups, from age 20 to age 50 and above.

The products don't claim to do anything incredibly fancy (like other brands that often charge the earth and fail to deliver) and I appreciate the fact that they have a simple philosophy and offer great quality yet reasonably priced, beauty products.

Although I was completely impressed by the whole range, I was most excited about their 3 phase skincare products. The B collection has three different skincare phases which set out to achieve different things depending on your individual needs and age group.

So here's the breakdown:

First off, is Skin Phase 1 which helps to enhance your skins youthful appearance whilst helping to protect against the first signs of ageing (suitable if you are in your twenties).

Skin Phase 2 is more suitable if you are looking to reduce the visible effects of ageing.

Finally, Skin Phase 3 is best suited for mature skin and will aim to combat visible signs of ageing.So, there really is something for everyone!

There's also some amazing makeup products too including a mascara which leaves no traces of black marks when you wash/cleanse your face. Yes you heard it right, no more panda eyes! I also loved the Sheer Colour Conditioning Lipstick in coral which is perfect for the spring (£6.99), the All Lengthening, Defining, Volumising Mascara (£9.99) and Shimmering Vibrant Eye Shimmer in Poseidon (£6.99). The full reviews are coming soon!

I predict there's going to be a rush to Superdrug anytime soon so you better hurry ladies, it's all in store now!

Let me know if you have tried any of the new Superdrug B products? I would love to hear your thoughts!


P.s Sorry about the picture quality, my laptop is currently not working and will be back very soon! Hoorah!


January 01, 2013

Beauty Edit: My Favourites of 2012

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a fun evening whatever you decided to do!

To celebrate the past year, I decided to look through all of my beauty products and pick out my favourites of 2012. The final selection took a lot of editing and I'm sure there are still many other products that I would have loved to squeeze in!

So here are my favourite beauty picks of 2012:


From left:

- Clarins Cleansing Milk and Toning Lotion
Whenever I'm in need of a good cleanser and toning lotion I always turn to this Clarins duo. The cleansing milk is refreshing and offers fuss-free cleansing with no need to splash water everywhere and the toning lotion is also very soothing as it contains camomile.  With this cleanser and toner I also find that a little goes a long way so it is definitely worth every penny- See my full review here.

- Dot by Marc Jacobs Body Lotion
There's something extra special about using a body lotion that has a hint of your favourite fragrance. I was bought this body lotion as a treat to go with the fragrance and it's fun and fruity scent really enhances the fragrance when both are worn throughout the day. Dot is a juicy floral fragrance and has notes of berries, sweet honeysuckle and energising orange blossom!

- Nivea Firming Body Oil
I'm always sceptical about lotions and potions that claim to have 'firming qualities' but I've got to admit, I really do love this body oil. Its great for popping on after a bath or shower and it really does soften the skin and is soothing if your skin is super sensitive. I've had this product a couple of months now and I can tell it will probably last me another 6 months to a year.

Face & Cheeks

From left:

- Chanel Perfection Lumiere Long-wear foundation, 12 Beige Rose
It's taken me a long time to find the perfect foundatation and although I am currently using MAC mineralize satinfinish foundation (NW20), I am sure I will continue to buy this Chanel one, especially for everyday wear. The colour matches my skintone really well and I think it offers good coverage and is a lightweight foundation that lasts throughout the day!

- Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge for Lips and Cheeks in Fresh Melon
This little pot of goodness is the perfect solution if you want to perk up your cheeks, as it's smooth balmy texture gives your cheeks or lips a fresh and dewy finish. Great for lazy days when you only want to pop on concealer and a touch of mascara! It's available in plenty of colours too.

- Estee Lauder Double Wear Concealer in light medium
This product has been one of my saviours of the year and has definitely concealed many late nights! It is a product that I will never leave the house without, as it manages to mask any signs of tiredness whilst making the skin appear much more radiant. A must-have hero product.

- Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman Blush Brush
There's been a lot of love for these realTechniques make-up brushes and I must say, quality make-up brushes such as these do make a huge difference. This brush is great for highlighting and contouring the cheekbones and has a very soft feel. Can't wait to try the others including the popular stippling brush.


Lipstick Colours Swatched! (In order)
From left:

- MAC Prep+Prime
When applying lipstick most people say it's best not to add a lip balm first as it makes the colour slide, so this softening prep+prime stick by MAC is the perfect alternative. Before applying my lipsticks I apply a touch of this softening vanilla scented stick onto my lips and it makes the colour stay in place whether it's day or night! So say goodbye to those continuous lipstick top-ups!

- MAC Satin Lipstick in Rebel
This MAC Rebel lipstick is by far my favourite lipstick for it's highly-pigmented colour. I walked into the shop to buy a nude shade and came out with this fabulous, sultry deep purple and I absolutely love it! Full review here.

- Bobbi Brown Lip Colour in 7 Orange
Love love love this lippy too! This orange shade by Bobbi Brown is the perfect colour for warming up a pale complexion.

- Louise Gray for Topshop in Legend
Picked up this hot pink shade from the Louise Gray for Topshop collection as I don't own many pink lipsticks . It's nice to have a change from statement red lips and I think this colour-popping pink will be just that. It's now £5 in the Topshop sale too!


From left:

-Clarins Limited Edition Ombre Minerale 4 Colours eye palette
Being a brunette with dark eyes, I like to wear golden, bronze and brown shades on my eyes. This limited edition Clarins palette has been perfect for day or evening and each colour is very long-lasting. Although this palette was a limited edition purchase, Clarins are doing palette's and single eyeshadows in very similar shades.

- Clarins High Definition Mascara
I usually find that more expensive mascara's tend to dry up much more quickly but I have been pleasantly suprised by the Clarins Instant definition mascara. It's formula is very soft and moisturising and it also has a fine tip which is great for defining any bottom lashes. I will definitely be purchasing this volumising mascara again.

-Maybelline Master Precise liquid eyeliner pen
Perfect for creating 60s style flicks, this liquid eyeliner pen by Maybelline is so easy to use and doesn't smudge like many others. Another hero product to add to the list...


From left:

- Models Own Wah nail art pen in black
Although I have only played around with this nail art pen (full review coming soon), I have been impressed with how easy it is to use. Great for creating polka dots, stripes and leopard print when used on top of lighter coloured polishes.

-Barry M Gelly Nail Polish in Blood Orange
Barry M never fails to bring out some amazing coloured polishes and I am particularly loving the Gelly shades. This classic red colour has great shine right from the first coat and really does have the look of a gel or shellac manicure.

- Rimmel Pro in 410 trend spotting
The Rimmel pro nail polishes are long lasting, highly pigmented in colour and the thick brush makes them very simple to use, especially when painting the final coat when leaving the house! 

- Topshop Nail Polish in Nice N' Neutral
I have always liked the Topshop nail polishes since the word go. This Nice n' Neutral colour is a welcome change from brights and helps nails to look healthy and natural.

Fragrance & Body Lotions

Last but not least, here are my two newest fragrances and matching body lotions: Valentina and Lancome La Vie Est Belle. I'm not going to dwell on them too much as there will be full reviews coming soon, but they are definitely worth a mention in my beauty favourites for 2012!

I hope you have enjoyed this rather long post as much as I have looking back over the past year of beauty buys!
What are your favourite beauty products of 2012?
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