.

Thursday, 31 December 2015

W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette - Naked 3 Dupe

W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette - Naked 3 Dupe

After giving my first impressions on this palette here, I am back with a more detailed post after playing around with it a bit more. The W7 In the Nude Eyeshadow Palette* features 12 shades that follow a neutral/rosey toned theme. It won't come as a surprise to you that this is meant to be an Urban Decay Naked 3 dupe, the main thing that separates this offering from W7 to other Naked 3 dupes though for me is that the packaging is a lot more similar; the tin case, the double sided brush (although it isn't the best at picking product up) and the layout of the shades. It looks the part but did it perform as well?

 Most of the shades in the palette have quite a bit of shimmer, with a few that lean more on the metallic side, and out of the 12 there are only 3 shades that I would truly class as matte. One of the great things about this palette is that the shades are actually named so there won't be any attempts at numbering on my part. The split between the lighter and deeper shades is even at 6 a piece. The shades are also designed to take you from day to night, although I think there is a lack of a highlighter shade in the palette, however when you're mimicking a palette I guess you can't just add an extra shade in there or else it wouldn't be a dupe.

W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette - Naked 3 Dupe

W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette - Naked 3 Dupe
The Lighter shades are:
  • Latte - A warm matte beige. I found that this didn't work as a highlighter as it just blended in with my skin so I use it as an all over base shade instead. It's also not as pigmented as I would have liked and slightly powdery.
  • Angel - A beautiful iridescent baby pink shade with golden glitter running through it. Unfortunately, on the lid the glitter sort of takes over and there is also quite a bit of fallout.
  • Venice - A metallic mauvey pink, although it does have fine golden specks running through this. I love this shade, it's very neutral but quite unique too, it would flatter everyone!
  • Marilyn - A matte dusky pink. I love using this as a lid shade, the formula is very smooth although it could be a bit more pigmented. One of my favourite shades in the palette!
  • Copper Pot - In the pan Copper Pot appears to be a deep mauvey rose, however it lacks in pigment and so it's more of a soft metallic rose on the lid.
  • Sun Kissed - A lovely warm golden iridescent pink with shimmer running through it. This shade is a lot more pigmented than the other light shades, and the formula is that bit smoother as well. People who love their golden tones will enjoy this.

W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette - Naked 3 Dupe


W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette - Naked 3 Dupe
The deeper shades are:
  • Alice - A matte mauve, borders slightly on burgundy. This is the deeper matte in the palette and I love it! It gives a lovely smoked look, although I did find the formula to be slightly chalky.
  • Bad Manners - A brownish shimmery plum, this shade has intense pigmentation.
  • Coffee Cup - A warm coppery brown with a shimmery finish. This is a lovely pigmented shade to go in the crease.
  • Mud Slide - A metallic greyish brown. This is the only shade in the palette that leans a bit more on the cool side.
  • Tokyo - A deeper grey. Out of the shimmer shades Tokyo have the least shimmer particles.
  • Fashionista - A deep shimmery aubergine/burgundy shade. It can look black from afar but it's a lovely shade and perfect for intensifying a look.

W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette - Naked 3 Dupe

Overall, as you can probably tell the deeper shades are much more pigmented than the lighter shades, the swatch above shows just how luminous and intense they are. Whilst some of the lighter shades don't have the same colour pay off I still love the mix of shades, especially the mattes. I would still say the palette is worth it as some of the shades are just too good to miss, plus in many eyeshadow palettes you can get some duds, so £5 (with free delivery here) for 12 shades isn't a bad deal I reckon! The pigment can also be improved a bit by wetting the brush beforehand, I used a facial mist for this and it really helped improve the look of shades such as Alice. I also tried them out with an eye primer but I think wetting the brush gives the best results.

I don't own the Naked 3 but from swatches online I would say the shades look quite similar, but Urban Decay comes out a bit better with the quality of the shadows, especially the lighter shades. However, that's £38 and this palette is almost an 1/8 of that! I think it's incredible that W7 can offer a lot for £5, so if you're looking for an affordable rose themed palette this is the one for you.


Bloglovin| Instagram| Twitter


Follow

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Tarte Lights Camera Flashes Mascara Review

Tarte Lights Camera Flashes Mascara Review

A while back I was lucky enough to win the Tarte Lights Camera Flashes mascara from Beautylymin (her blog is filled with plenty of skincare and beauty reviews!). Tarte used to be quite hard to get hold of here, although that is rapidly changing so I thought it would be a good time to share my thoughts on this mascara.

Tarte Lights Camera Flashes Mascara Review

First of all, I think you'll agree with me that the packaging is very unique! The outer packaging feels very cushiony, almost like someone's wrapped a gold quilted blanket around the mascara tube. I'm actually quite a fan of the gold colour as it's very sparkly and festive, although I'll admit it doesn't feel like much of a traditional mascara as it's far removed from the classic black tube we're so used to seeing.

Onto the product now and this is possibly the biggest mascara wand I have ever seen, it's huge! The plastic wand is filled with spiky bristles of varying length. The huge wand does mean it can be quite difficult to get those short lashes in the inner corner and a bit of caution was also required to make sure I didn't poke myself in the eye. Before applying the mascara I normally remove the excess product off the brush as the formula is a bit drier than I am used to and it can cause the lashes to clump together if too much is applied.

Tarte Lights Camera Flashes Mascara Review

On the website it claims that the differing lengths of the bristles help you to achieve more of a false lash effect, so you initially apply the mascara with the short bristles first to add volume and then comb through with the longer bristles to separate and lengthen your lashes. This is a good idea, however in reality it can be hard to tell the bristles apart, especially if they are covered in the formula. Therefore, I think the key to this is to apply the mascara in small steps.

The first layer adds a nice bit of volume at the base of my lashes and helps lengthen them considerably. The second layer is much more of a statement, it really gives that false lash effect making my lashes appear quite thick at the base and provides a great curl. I have included pictures but I do realise they're not that great as they all look the same!

Overall, this mascara is great for those of us who want bold, statement lashes without having to worry about putting falsies on. This isn't an everyday mascara for me but on occasions where I have more time to put this on or a look to pair it with this is great for volume and length.

I hope you enjoyed this post!
What are your favourite mascaras?



Bloglovin| Instagram| Twitter


Follow

Friday, 18 December 2015

W7: The Best of the Dupes

W7: The Best of the Dupes

W7 is definitely one of the brands that I feel should be sold on the high street next to other well loved beauty brands because not only do they have fantastic products in their own right (I love their mega matte lip cream as you can see here), but they also offer many affordable dupes to expensive cult products. I know that dupes aren't for everyone, and they may not be all that similar to the originals, but after the success of some brands whose products are often very similar to well known beauty products (anyone thinking bold/ultra metals dupe?) I don't see anything really wrong with them. So I'm quickly going to give you the lowdown on my first impressions of these W7 products I got to try.

W7 Ben Nye Banana Powder Dupe Review

Banana Dreams loose Powder* £4.99 here
The banana dreams is a yellow toned powder which is meant to be a dupe for the very famous Ben Nye Banana powder (the name sort of gives it away!). Now the Banana Powder is ridiculously hard to get hold of ever since the whole world went crazy over the Kardashian contouring method, there's people selling small sachets of the stuff for enormous amounts! Even for those of us who aren't into the whole baking trend it can still be a great undereye setting powder for yellow toned skin, so I was really excited to try out this more accessible offering!

W7 Ben Nye Banana Powder Dupe Review

First of all, once swatched it's more of a pale yellow compared to the bright sunny yellow I was expecting, I might have let my imagination run wild(!) The packaging is quite well designed as you have a screw top (for the safety of your furniture), and then a plastic lid which I use to swirl my brush around to get rid of any excess powder. However, it can still be a bid fiddly so a bit of caution is required. The powder itself is very, very finely milled so on first thoughts the quality does seem really good for a budget brand. However, when I first applied it to set my undereye concealer I wasn't hugely impressed as there wasn't much of a difference compared to my usual stay matte powder. I then tried it over some concealer on my chin where I suffer from some pigmentation, you know where you try everything you can think of but you still get a bit of ashiness! I noticed much more of a difference here as the yellow powder made it look more natural, it wasn't a dramatic change but it was much better than when I use a more neutral toned powder. Also, whilst my skin can appear yellow my undertones are actually quite neutral as I have some pink in there too, so for people who lean more on the yellow scale they might find the results more exemplified.

W7 Ben Nye Banana Powder Dupe Review

The Banana Dreams powder also makes a good setting powder for general use so it doesn't have to be restricted to baking/contouring. Applied to my T Zone it gives my skin a matte look without the matte feeling which for my dry skin it is lovely to still have a bit of a glow. However, after around midday I did see a bit of a shine around my nose so I do need to apply a bit more of this in the mornings compared to my pressed powder and people with oiler skin may need to touch up. However, the more I use this the more I'm enjoying the finish it gives!

Wake Up & Glow Bronzing Base

Wake Up & Glow Bronzing Base* - £4.50 here
For those of us who aren't willing to fork out £32 on the Chanel soleil tan de Chanel bronze universal this W7 bronzing base might just be what you're looking for. It's a warm toned bronzing cream that can be worn by itself or over foundation to give it that glowy look. It's not that apparent on the swatch but it has golden glitter particles running through it. It's pretty pigmented when swatched, however I did have to build it on my medium skin, people with paler skin will find this just right for them. However, the problem with building it up was that the glitter was also building up! I think it could do without the glitter as it can be quite noticeable, but another option would be to use it down your limbs, almost like a highlighter.

Wake Up & Glow Bronzing Base

On it's own I found it a bit too warm, it also slightly bordered on looking a bit red. However, under foundation it looked more glowy and more natural. Overall, I've never really been into bronzing as I don't find it suits me, and therefore people who enjoy a bit of tanning might get on better with this.

Wake Up & Glow Bronzing Base

Absolute Lashes Mascara Blackest Black

Absolute Lashes Mascara Blackest Black* £2.99 here
The packaging on this mascara alone instantly makes me think it's a dupe of the Benefit They're Real mascara. In order not to make this post insanely long I'll be doing a detailed comparison post between the two mascaras shortly, so I'll just sum up my thoughts here. The wand is exactly the same as the Benefit offering, it's quite big and covered in rubber bristles that really separate and curl your lashes. My lashes are quite naturally curled but this made them almost vertical, not to mention incredibly long! It's amazing at lengthening your lashes, although I did find it a bit lacking in volume. The formula is wetter than I was expecting so I did get a bit around my eyelid which was easily cleared with a cotton bud, the mascara also comes off easily using my hot cloth cleanser.

W7 Hollywood Bronze & Glow Highlighter

Hollywood Bronze & Glow Highlighter* - £2.99 here
This was the product I couldn't wait to try, a dupe to the much coveted Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze & Glow, yes please! Not only is the layout very similar to the original, but I love how it features a similar pattern in the product which reminds me of a nice sunny day (even though those are long gone now(!)).  The outer packaging isn't all that eye catching though, I would have preferred a more sleek gold packaging. Both the contour and highlighter shade are very pigmented and they picked up well on my brush. The contour shade is a slightly warm medium brown in the pan, however it translated amazingly on my skin! It looked much more like a natural shadow rather than an obvious oh I'm wearing contour. I've struggled a lot recently finding a natural contour and this is it, the search is over! I'm in love, all I had to do was pick up a bit of product and swipe it across my cheeks and I had cheekbones. I'm definitely going to be popping this out on special occasions!

Hollywood Bronze & Glow Highlighter

The highlighter is more of a soft champagne colour, it's a little shimmery when swatched however when applied to the skin it gives off more of a sheen than anything. It's a very majestical inner glow, although I must admit at first I was like nope can't see anything and so I added a whole lot more! Not that I had any reason though as it's very pigmented too. However, the highlighter shade didn't blow me away like the contouring shade did but it's still very good in it's own right. Overall, I haven't compared it to the original yet (although I might get the chance shortly) but I still think it's a great product at £2.99 compared to all the other drugstore contouring kits. The contour will definitely be replace my Bourjois bronzer.

W7 In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette

In The Nude Eyeshadow Palette * £4.99 here
I will be doing a full review with swatches on this shortly, (I know this is a very long post already!) I'm definitely one of those people who loves a good Naked dupe as I just don't wear eyeshadows that often to justify spending £38 on a palette that hardly sees the light of day. I was yet to try a Naked 3 dupe though and so I couldn't wait to try this W7 offering. Of all the dupes I think W7 offer the most similar packaging, the tin casing is very durable and practical. I'm also glad that they made the effort to include a duo sided brush too, rather than two sponge applicators, however I would have also liked to see a similar brush to the original as this flat synthetic one wasn't great at picking up the eyeshadow. But in all honesty I have enough eyeshadow brushes anyways!


The one thing I have to mention about this palette is that with a lot of palettes that mainly include shimmer shades, like this one, the mattes can be quite lacking. However, I was also blown away by the quality of the mattes in this palette, just as much as the shimmers, they're very pigmented and the shades are incredibly flattering! The rosy toned shades in this palette are some of my favourites, and I'm sure it's one I'll keep coming back too.

I hope you enjoyed this post!
Have you tried any W7 products?



Bloglovin| Instagram| Twitter


Follow

Monday, 14 December 2015

Places To Visit This Christmas

When it comes to Christmas I know how it's all to easy to become consumed by presents, shopping and decorations! But sometimes it's the simplest things that put a smile on my face like spending a day with the family. So I thought I would do a round up of some attractions that make for a great family day out.


English National Opera
If you mentioned any type of musical performance to me last year I would have really said it wasn't my cup of tea. However, after watching Bend it like Beckham The Musical earlier this year I'm already looking for the next show! It's just an amazing experience watching some really talented people and you get all caught up in the moment as well. Although the name English National Opera may suggest that they only have opera performances going on, like norma opera, there are also many other performances that fit more into the category of dance. The one that I'm particularly interested in is Nutcracker which is a musical and ballet extravaganza that follows Clara's adventures in Edwardian London. It definitely has a Christmassy feel and I for one love seeing the Orchestra in action, I find it quite captivating! The best part is that in order to make it all accessible there is supposed to be atleast 500 tickets at £20 or under for every performance, although I have a feeling they must sell out quite quickly.

Cadbury World
Cadbury World is amazing at any time of the year. I mean heaps of chocolate, what is there not to love?! However, there's just that bit more magic around Christmas, especially with their handmade seasonal treats in the sweet shop. Tickets are relatively affordable and there are many treats included in that price, including pots of melted chocolate that you can fill up with more chocolates, a 4D cinema experience, and of course the guided tour. The sweetshop is where you go to pick up your chocolate souvenirs and they do packs of what they call misshapes, basically chocolates that didn't meet the high standards initially, which are bundled together in a huge packet for £3, these didn't last very long at all in my house!

Winter Wonderland
Lastly, I'm sure by now you must all know how much I enjoy visiting Winter Wonderland with a customary walk down Oxford Street to breathe the whole atmosphere in. If you missed it here's my latest excursion! Whilst there is a huge amount of German Markets in my city centre I find these too packed most of the time, whereas Winter Wonderland offers more in the sense of a day out as you can enjoy some attractions (Zippos Circus is still one of my favourites), some great food and some fun in the way of those win a teddy bar stalls, there's still time for me to win one of those huge teddies!

I hope you enjoyed this post!
What places would you recommend I visit?

*This post includes some sponsored content.




Bloglovin| Instagram| Twitter


Follow

Monday, 7 December 2015

Winter Wonderland + The Magical Ice Kingdom


Following on from last year's tradition (see here) I couldn't wait to visit Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park again! My previous visit included a visit to Zippos circus, which is more of a daytime show for the family, so to mix it up this year I got tickets to The Magical Ice Kingdom. The adult tickets were £10 each plus a £3 booking fee. The Magical Ice Kingdom is basically a very cold tent (I'm talking -8 degrees) filled with ice sculptures.  You walk around taking a look, or should I say taking photos, of the various displays. I would really recommend wrapping up warm for this attraction as after 5 minutes my fingers were going numb under my gloves! Thankfully they give you hand warmers as soon as you come out of the attraction, I kept mines inside my gloves all day whilst I walked along Oxford Street and they were a lifesaver!

The actual attraction itself was very short as you're basically walking around in a circle, it was also busy with lot's of families in there but you can take things at your own leisurely pace. There was also an ice slide inside and whilst I did queue up for around 10 minutes to have a go I gave up eventually because it didn't seem to be working properly as people were just shuffling along on their behinds (!) Not worth the embarassment haha! Overall, if you long to experience Narnia it's worth a visit.









 I love walking around the markets (when they're not packed) and having a look at all the delights!


 (MINIONS!!! I got my Sister a Minion car freshener too as a stocking filler, it seemed much funnier in my head)



Unfortunately I still haven't plucked up the courage to go ice skating.



We got some Churros with cinnamon and a chocolate dip for £5, they were yummy, albeit a bit messy.


 (I love this picture, the kid in me comes out! There was a sweet shop called the Santa's Sweet Factory and they had everything)

Can you believe this was the first time I tried cookie dough? We ordered a sharing platter from Pizza Hut (does anyone else order 2x the amount they're actually going to eat) and so we got a sharing sized cookie dough with chocolate chip but we didn't really like it. I think the hot cold combination was just a bit too weird for me.

We also caught the last of the Hamleys Toy Parade which was amazing, it really made our day! Although I kid you not, getting into Hamleys felt like I was in the Hunger Games (it made Primark look like child's play - no pun intended!) It was crammed to the rafters, I did had a really nice time playing a game, although I lost because of a lack of hand eye coordination. Also, it was the first time I wore my bobble hat out and the amount of times I heard 'nice hat, girls!' has put me off wearing it a bit (!)

I hope you enjoyed this post!
What do you love about Winter Wonderland or the German markets?
P.S A few days left to enter my beauty giveaway here!

Bloglovin| Instagram| Twitter


Follow

Monday, 30 November 2015

Hair Accessories with Irresistible Me

Recently I was lucky enough to try out some hair accessories from Irresistible Me. Irresistible Me is a haircare brand focusing on hair extensions but I would say these hair accessories are the overlooked gems on the website (I'm sure you'll agree with me when you see just how beautiful they are!)

Their hair accessories include everything from hairbands, to hair clips, barrettes and hair chains. I received two hairbands, a hair comb and a barrette style clip to try.


The Giselle headband* (see here) is a lovely slim silver hairband decorated with pearls and an intricate diamonte detailing in a criss cross design. Even with the outstanding detail it still manages to look simple and elegant, this is quite a girly piece and looks amazing placed quite high up towards the crown. The bands slip into the hair so that you can only see the design, even with the metal sides it still feels lightweight and doesn't hurt my head. This is definitely a piece for a Summer boho look or an upcoming Christmas party.


The Isis headband* (see here) is more of a statement piece with an impressive flower detail completed with smaller rhinestones in the shape of flower clusters. This definitely looks very expensive and so would be perfect to add a bit of glamour to a wedding outfit. It looks very classic and would go with most hairstyles, if you have a fringe you can keep it on the same side to compliment it or put it on the opposite side (like I do) to balance it out a bit. The metal sides of these headband have a woven coil to provide a better grip I suppose, it is a bit more chunkier than the Giselle headband but that's due to the greater design.


The Hera Hair comb* (see here) has the most beautiful detailed design. My photos don't do it justice, but the level of individual effort that has gone into each leaf and flower, with the placement of several rhinestones, mustn't have only took ages but it must have been a tonne of hard work too! I've worn a similar hair comb once before at my Cousins wedding where I wore it on the side, although this one has such a great grip all I had to do was twirl a section of my hair and slide it in. The hair comb is still very light and the hair grips don't dig into my head at all.


The Sapphire Hair Barrette* (see here) is a gold barrette filled with teal coloured rhinestones in a flower design again. The colours are very vivid and this sparkles like nothing you've seen! The actual barrette itself is quite sturdy and has three different clasp layers so it would be suitable for thick and thin hair as you can adjust how much you want to tighten it by. I love this piece as it looks so elegant and would look great on everyone.


Overall, these hair pieces by Irresistible Me are all of the highest quality and so will be great for any party or special event. Currently they are selling for $10, about £6.65 each, and shipping from the US is $9.95. However, they did arrive very quickly and you get a tracking number to see where they are. The Sapphire Barrette is definitely my favourite out of the bunch and has changed my opinions on Barrettes as they were never something I would have gone for normally.

I hope you enjoyed this post!
What hair accessories do you like wearing?


Bloglovin| Instagram| Twitter


Follow

Monday, 23 November 2015

Stila In The Garden Palette Review

Stila In The Garden Palette Review
Coincidence or not but I recently did a post listing some of the beauty bargains that can be picked up online, and this Stila palette was included for £10 from TKMaxx. However, by the next morning it was already all sold out! I was even more gutted when a lot of people said they had seen it in their local TKMaxx, but the only thing in my TKMaxx was some smudged lipsticks. However, my luck all changed when I found two of these the following week. Again, they were both missing the eyeliner that was supposed to come with it (why do people do that) and so they were for £6, rather than the £7 they were being sold at. However, as silly as this might sound, I still wasn't sure about it as I had no idea what Stila's quality generally is concerning eyeshadows, and there's only so much you can learn by doing a quick swatch. I was wondering whether I would be better off trying a drugstore palette instead, like MUR, however I decided I might as well try it for blog purposes (the amount of times I've used that excuse already!).

Stila In The Garden Palette Review

I really struggled with finding a theme for this palette at first, according to the Stila website it's a garden inspired palette, and so I can see where they get the shades such as nectar, and the freesia pink and even the moss from. However, it's still one of those palettes that are quite diverse. It is personal preference but I think I quite like the range of shades as it's allowed me to try shades that I would never have picked up individually.

Stila In The Garden Palette Review

The first thing you notice about this palette, or any product for that matter, is the packaging. I'm afraid to say the packaging is a bit grim, it's a standard cardboard case that's prone to ripping (as you can see above) and breakage. It also picks up dust and fall out from the eyeshadows on the inside like there's no tomorrow! This palette is still available for £25 from Stila and other retailers and if I paid that much for it I would be a bit disappointed at the packaging. The outside of the packaging however is not as bad as the inside, it looks more sleeker and it has a magnetic close. The rear of the packaging also has the shade names listed again.

Stila In The Garden Palette Review

THE SHADES:

Chinois: A creamy off white that does look a bit powdery initially but blends in well.
Breeze: A lovely, iridiscent golden beige. This shade is very pigmented and by right too as it's stunning.
Bark: A shimmery taupe brown.
Nectar: A warm neutral beige with very slight golden flecks.
Honey: An iridiscent deep gold, borders on a slight burnt orange shade. A beautiful shade and highly pigmented again.
Sage: A metallic pale green.

Stila In The Garden Palette Review

Freesia: A metallic violet, with almost unnoticeable golden flecks. The pigmentation of this shade is slightly disappointing.
Rosette: A metallic purple pink. This eyeshadow is the least pigmented out of the bunch, which is a shade as it would have been a beautiful muted down mauvey purple.
Moss: A stunning deep olive green with golden flecks running through it (although it does come up as a deep brown in pictures). Very pigmented as well!
Juniper: A metallic electric green, very foresty and Autumnal. The pigmentation was also a bit disappointing however it really pops when you build it up.

Stila In The Garden Palette Review

Stila In The Garden Palette Review

Overall, this palette has a few shades which are a bit of a let down, such as Freesia and Rosette, they had the potential to be amazing but they were let down by the lack of pigment. However, the stand out shades in this palette, such as Breeze, Honey, Sage and Moss do not disappoint with the quality and I'm quite pleased with them. It's also worth noting that most shades have some aspects of shimmer, even if it isn't as noticeable with the metallic shades, I think Chinois is the only matte shade.

Out of these shades, I can see myself using the middle shades the most as they are the best in terms of quality and pigment. I don't think I'll get much use out of Chinois or Nectar as I find these shades can wash me out a bit, and they might be too powdering for an inner corner highlight. Freesia, Rosette and Juniper will probably be more wearable layered over a eyeshadow cream/liquid.

So is this palette worth it? At £6 yes I think you get some beautiful shades in there that look amazing as a lid colour, however at £25 there wouldn't be a chance of me recommending this palette as 4 out of the 10 shades just aren't up to scratch.

I hope you enjoyed this post!
Have you tried any Stila Products?