Friday, 26 July 2013

The New Black 5-Piece Ombre Nail Set in Waves

The New Black Nail Kit in Waves - £26.50 (*)
Lately I've really gotten into doing my nails and started exploring the world of nail art a little bit more. I recently won this nail kit in a giveaway and instantly thought it was an easy way of getting ombre nails without the fuss of having to use a sponge. 

I love the concept of The New Black Kits, allowing nail trends to become accessible and hassle-free. However, for me, the price really limits its accessibility. If I hadn't won this, I'm not so sure I would of been able to warrant over £25 on a nail kit where each bottle is significantly smaller (4ml) than your average Barry M counter-part. I know its quality not quantity and lots of brands use miniature sizes in sets, but I do like a decent amount of product, and for the price of this set, bigger bottles would be welcome. Despite this, the packaging is very sleek and simple, letting the shades of the polish sell the product. Sometimes simple is best, and it definitely appeals to me. 

I think I'd have less of a bee in my bonnet over the price if the quality was top notch, but I find it a bit questionable. The shade selection is absolutely lovely, but the formula is less than desirable. After applying the 1st coat I was in a bit of shock. I've never had such a streaky coat before in my life. Although after 2-3 coats (2 in the images above) it becomes opaque, its still a bit streaky. Its less noticeable on the darker shades, but the lighter shades aren't up to scratch at all. For the price of the set, you'd want it foolproof and effortlessly streak free. If I'm to stick another nail in the coffin, I wish the shades had names too!

Would I recommend? I think your money would be better spent getting 5 coordinating bottles from a drug stores. I'd give this a miss.

Have you tried any nail sets?


Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Brand || Anne Semonin

Gentle Mistletoe Shampoo - £21 (*)
The Daily Musts - £24 (*)
Bath Shower Gel in Exotic Verbena - £21 (*)
Before I started blogging I was very much a loyal buyer, sticking to a brand like glue. Nowadays, even though I'm more market savvy and know where to look to get the best results, I'm still quite reluctant to try brands I've not seen blogged about. I'll give them a look, but very rarely go the full way and buy something. I suppose that just highlights the power of the blogging world, and the hype that can be created. 

When Anne Semonin was at the #northmeetup, I was pretty damn excited. I've mulled over the range on Cult Beauty and Beauty Bay for a long time now, but I've not really heard much about them. The products are on quite pricey for a blind trial so being offered three to try has given me a real feel for the brand.  Aimed to re-balance stressed and confused skin (which mine most certainly is) all products are have highly concentrated natural active ingredients to ensure they work effectively. 

Packaging wise, I love the mirrored tops and the hard plastic tubing. You can see exactly how much product you have left, and the mirrored top feels luxuriously understated. I'm also a fan of the packaging of The Daily Musts. The white and silver look very classy together and really make you feel like your using a high quality, top brand. 

Now to the important bit, the products. I am absolutely in love with the shower gel, it smells like sherbet lemons! I could happily just sit there smelling it, its absolutely divine. I'm not usually impressed with shampoo, its one of those necessities I'm sometime a bit reluctant to shell out for, but I did really enjoy using this. A little goes a long way and while I didn't initially think it made much difference, I've received a lot more compliments on my hair by just using this. It's made my hair look naturally healthier and easy to style. I think what I was most looking forward to trying is the Daily Musts, a set of 4 face masks, a sort of sample set of a selection for the full-sized range. I think this is such a good way of testing out a new brand, particularly a skin care brand which I usually judge on the quality of their face masks. Apart from the mineral mask, which I seem to be allergic to, I loved all of them! The gel and exfoliating masks particularly stood out for me, both making my skin look smoother and radiant. The gel mask was especially relaxing and really pepped my skin up after a long night whilst the exfoliating mask is more of an instant gratification mask, perfect if you've neglected your skin.

Now I've had a taste would I try again? Definitely. I think over the years I've realised that if you splurge on skincare you can save on make-up, and I do think high end skincare is worth its weight in gold. I love the face mask set and am going to keep it in mind for gifts, and that shower gel simply smells far to good not to buy it again. Maybe this will tempt me into trying more brands ...

Have you tried anything from Anne Semonin? Are there any under hyped brands you've found?


Monday, 22 July 2013

My Tiffany Key

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So as I've probably said a million times, for my 21st, I got a Tiffany Key necklace. Traditionally, you used to get the keys to the house at 21, so it was kind of symbolic. I've always wanted a piece of Tiffany's jewellery, something understated and classic, but incredibly special. I'm definitely a necklace girl. I have lots of bracelets and rings, but I find I will always come back to a necklace, and I just don't feel me without one on. 

Anyway, quite a few people have asked me which Tiffany Key I got so I thought I'd show you all. I chose a small daisy necklace with a diamond in the centre. To match the braided trim, I got a 18 inch beaded chain. I really love how elegant and simple the design is, something classic that I will be able to wear forever and remember my 21st birthday. I love it. 

Have you got anything from Tiffanys?


Friday, 19 July 2013

FOTD|| Graduation Make Up

Products Used
BASE The Body Shop Skin Primer in Matte It; Lacura Beauty Illuminating Concealer Pen in Cashmere; Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation in True Ivory; Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Concealer in Light; Natural Collection Loose Powder in Neutral TranslucentFACE MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural in Medium Deep; MAC Sheertone Shimmer Blush in Peachykeen; e.l.f. All Over Color Stick in Toasted. EYES Rimmel Scandal Eyes Eye Shadow Paint in Golden Bronze; Urban Decay Naked Palette in Darkhorse and Hustle; Studio Makeup Lasting Color Eye Liner in Black-Brown; 17 Eyebrow Shaper in Natural Brown; MAC X. LIPS MAC Cremesheen Lipstick in Shy Girl; MAC Cremesheen Glass in Richer, Lusher.

This is what I ended up doing with my make up for my graduation. I think smart events are particularly hard to judge, especially daytime ones. You don't want to look too night time, and yet want to look different to show that its a special event. Although I used quite a few different products, I think my make up was about right, with a bronze smokey eye, and coral cheek sand lips. 

For my eyes I used the new Rimmel Eye Paints in Golden Bronze. I actually have all the shades and love them! I used the brush to apply a small line, and then blended it in using a blending brush as my all-over-the-lid shade. It's easy to blend, has a great pigmentation and is amazingly long lasting and crease resistant, but you do have to work with it quick because take longer than a minute and it will have dried (not always a con in my opinion). I then used Darkhorse from the Naked Palette in my crease, with a gentle touch of Hustle in the corner and partly along my bottom lash line to finish off. I only lined my waterline slightly with a dark brown liner from Studio Makeup to give a more natural look than a black liner would have achieved.

On my cheeks I used MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural to contour which is ideal for those with fairer skin like myself because it looks far more natural and you don't end up trying to blend an orange patch in. Because I contoured, I used Peachykeen on just my apples to give me a bit of a warmer flush. I love the e.l.f. all over color sticks, especially toasted. They are amazingly pigmented and give such a lovely highlight. I use my fingers to rub a bit of the product and then just blend on the top of my cheekbones. 

Lastly I finished off with my go to daytime coral lip, Shy Girl with my all-time favorite lip gloss over it, Richer, Lusher. Its such a beautiful pinky coral that would suit anyone!


Wednesday, 17 July 2013


After 3 years of blood, sweat and tears (literally), I have left Keele University with a 2:1 LLB (Hons) Law degree, and last Thursday was my graduation ceremony. As luck would have it, England is having a heat wave so my family got to experience the campus at its most beautiful best. Over the last three years I've had my ups and downs, and last year I honestly thought I was going to have to drop out due to a brain tumor. Luckily, thanks to support of friends and family, I made it through my degree. Now I am in such an amazing position, with a legal job, 2 placements and being accepted at three Law Schools to do my Masters and LPC in September. Thursday really helped to show me how much I have achieved, especially in the last year. From seeing lecturers and friends on my course, to having official photographs and collecting my gown, it was something very special, and I am so excited to see what happens next.

Congratulations to all those graduating this summer. In the words of Elle Woods, WE DID IT!


Monday, 15 July 2013

21: Haul

I think the title pretty much explains this post, but this is what I was lucky enough to get for my 21st birthday. Like all of these posts on the internet, I just want to say that I am in no way bragging, and purely posting this because I have been asked what I got, and I love reading this kind of post so I hope you do too.

Firstly, I was lucky enough to receive two keepsake glasses from my parents and cousins. I love things like this on special birthdays because you can look back on your birthday in years to come. I'm a massive Tatty Teddy fan, so, like every birthday my mum and dad try to get me something from the range!

I got this gorgeous over-sized jumper, which I think's from Matalan, from my parents which is perfect for A/W, especially the transitional period in September. They also got a beautiful Tiffany's necklace, which I had wanted for absolutely ages, when we went on a day trip to London.  It's so stunning that I've decided it really deserves its own post haha. Besides getting quite a lot of money from my aunts and cousins, they got me a very very welcome Selfridges gift card which I plan on using to fill up my MAC Pro Palette up a little more. 

My parents also tried to get a few beauty bits for me, but they fully admit they have no idea what I've got or want to try. Saying that, they did so well! I love MUA products, and had been meaning to check out their new blush's so getting all 5 shades was definitely a good choice. I was so impressed that they found Bioderma too. It's even the limited edition with a pump! I have been trying to get my hands on this for so long, so I can't wait to finally use it. 

This year I've really got into scented candles but I am absolutely terrified of flames. I don't know why, but even during science lessons I used to hate Bunsen burners. This melt burner from Yankee Candle is the perfect compromise for me. It's electrical and after you've plugged it in and placed a melt in the saucer, it heats up and melts the melt like a normal scented candle so no need for a tea light! I got a massive selection of melts too, and I have such a choice I take ages deciding which one I want to burn next. This is my first taste of Yankee Candles, so if you know any good ones, let me know.

I'd just like to finish this post by saying how grateful  I am to to my family and friends for everything I got, I have some really gems to have a play with.



Friday, 12 July 2013

Eco Tools Limited Edition Beautiful Expressions Kabuki Set

Eco Tools Kabuki Brush Set - £14.79
Over the last year, I've become a little bit brush crazy. From having very few make up brushes, to three pots full (I could have my own nursery rhyme), I've worked out what type of brushes I like and work for me. I am a massive fan of Kabuki brushes and when I saw this limited edition set, I quickly grab one.

The set includes 4 different Kabuki brushes, with a different aluminium handle design allowing you to differentiate between them. The round conceal kabuki (2nd from left, pinkish flower handle) is perfect for liquid concealer or foundation, and as its shaped like your fingertip its perfect for a flawless finish, especially those smaller areas like round your nose. The domed contour kabuki (1st from left, green feather handle) and the angled bronze ( 3rd from left, blue leaf handle) kabuki are a great size for adding definition to your face, whilst the flat top buff kabuki (4th from left, brown handle) is great for applying a setting powder, or even removing excess powder if you've found you look a bit cakey. 

Having heard a lot about Eco Tools but never trying them myself, I was keen to see what the quality was like. The synthetic taklon bristles are super soft and I've experienced no shedding, even during the first wash. I love the size of the brushes too. Their not the biggest kabuki brushes I own, being just longer that the size of my palm (I have small hands too), but they are very easy to use, and great for popping into your make up bag for touch-ups throughout the day. 

Overall, I think this is a really good set from Eco Tools, great quality and a good price. The size makes the really versatile, their not so small as to become a pain to use, but still the perfect size to pop in a make up bag or use on the go.

Have you tried these kabuki brushes? What do you think of Eco Tools?


Wednesday, 10 July 2013

21: Celebrations

Last Thursday (4th July) I turned 21. I thought rather than one extremely long post, I'd split it into two parts, one with what I did to celebrate and one with a sort of haul which will be scheduled for Monday (15th). 

I'm quite low-key when it comes to birthdays. I love celebrating them, but I'm not keen on being centre of attention. On the actual day of my birthday, my family and I did our usual pilgrimage up to the coast to vist Lytham St. Annes and Blackpool. Every year on my birthday we try to do this, and this year we definitely were in luck with the weather. Thursday was the start of the heat wave the UK is currently experiencing, so it was such a lovely day. I adore 2p machines, probably one of the reasons no one will voluntarily go with me to Las Vegas, I'd come back completely broke! After winning a key ring (WOO!) we had a lovely walk down the promenade. I love that on a clear day, you can see Southport across the bay! We then went to my all time favorite fish and chips shop, Wheelans. If your ever in that area, its definitely worth a visit, its won so many awards, and lots of famous celebrities are huge fans too!

On Sunday 7th July, I had my family meal at a restaurant just round the corner from my house, Rendezvous 1. It's such a nice place, always amazingly friendly with extremely tasty food, and a relaxed atmosphere that suits celebratory meals out. They also do the best themed nights with entertainment, so its well worth a look. How amazing was my birthday cake? A local lady has made all my birthday cakes since I was born, and will make anything you design (within practicality of course). Since being young I've taken great pleasure in designing my own birthday cakes, and I've had everything from a drawing of my dog when he was a puppy, to Steps (the band) and now this. Its a joint cake for my birthday and graduation, hence an icing version of me with my 21st Birthday present, my Tiffany's necklace. I love it so much. 


Monday, 8 July 2013

FABB Events comes to Manchester

This post is pretty picture heavy. I've tried to reduce the number of pictures but its still a bit snap happy.

If, like me, your a bit of a twitter obsessive and join in with the entire blogger community, you may be familiar with the faces and musings of Tor and Ray. Together, they have recently started FABB Events, and after having my news feed flooded with events posts from their amazingly popular Leeds and Newcastle events, when I found out they were holding one in my hometown Manchester, I knew I had to go and see for myself. So on Saturday, after double checking I had a camera with a memory card to avoid doing another #northmeetup, I went into town ready to get  my blogger on with a room full of pretty people.

After a tense moment when I was stuck in traffic, I finally managed to meet up with some people in the boiling hot Manchester weather (first for everything), and head down to 2022NQ. Once we got there and negotiated to cobbles to the stairs, we were greeted by the lovely Ray, given a wristband and popped down the stairs to the main room into blogger heaven, with both fashion and beauty being represented!

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I absolutely loved Propbooth and were definitely regular faces through out the event. I've always wanted to do one of these photo booth's and it took me ages to decide what I wanted to use, so we ended up going back just to get new ones done! I think I need a Fez, I really suit it which a little bit scary. Anyone think I can make Fez's the new bowler hat? Anyway I think they are perfect for weddings, birthdays, or any event really that you want to capture in a unique way! They were definitely a hit with everyone at the event, and really helped to get the event started.

Further down was South Beach Swimwear who had me lusting for a last minute getaway! As worn by Lucy Watson from MIC, the brand had some lovely bright pieces, mixed with more understated ones to suit everyone's taste. I particularly LOVED the Lily Kaftan and the Ava cover up!

I was really happy to see Lavish Alice make an appearance, being bit of an old favorite with me. The girls were absolutely lovely explaining about the transitional and new A/W pieces they had brought along, making me wish I got a student loan this year. As soon as the paisley and dog two two-pieces come available I am snapping them up! I think cats are going to be huge as well, with both Lavish Alice and Tinned Bananas having pieces, like this gorgeous shirt with blue detailing.

I usually think more expensive is best when it comes to products, but being on a tighter budget than I was at uni thanks to no student loan, I'm now thinking a lot different. Derma V10 Tech Solutions is available at shops such as Bodycare and Poundland, and yet offers such a high-quality large range, you can really go mad without feeling guilty. We all got to choose 5 products to take away with us which was amazing! When I got home my dog was instantly attracted to the bag, and I only worked out it was because of the Chocolate Body Butter. It smells divine and I'm going to have to watch it because I can see everyone in my house trying to steal a little. Anyway with prices ranging from £0.49 for Tea Tree Wipes (which are exactly the same as more expensive brands) and £1.49 for Mascara, you can treat yourself and indulge without breaking the bank.

Since I was introduced to tan at the #northmeetup, I've been having a little play round. I'm deceivingly pale, and seem to be getting paler as I get older, so no doubt in a couple of years I'll be trying to make Casper the Ghost on trend. Vita Liberata, is a Irish brand, making its suitable for any skin tone, even me! What sold me was it was long lasting, ranging between the 2-3 weeks mark if you look after your skin, meaning minimal maintenance. I'm really excited to try this new brand out, and see how it compares to one's I've already tried.

I think everyone's eye was drawn to Tinned Banana's. Instantly the collection reminded me of Ibiza, vibrant and edgy while remaining on trend. I thought the Marmalade Sky Sunset Leggings  had a stunning print, and the turtle neck on Blue Smartie Space Print Crop Top lets you wear A/W trends now! Again, 'big cats' were out in full force and Leopard Off The Shoulder Dress is the perfect transitional piece.

I am holding my hands up and say I don't wear 'normal' false lashes much. Tame, delicate, natural ones just look lost on me, because I have really good eyelashes anyway. I do wear them for special events to feel more 'done', but if I'm going out, I like to opt for a more statement pair. Up until now I've only ever tried fuller, more intense versions of the natural pairs, but have always looked longingly at more embellished versions. Luckily for me Eldora were there offering is all any pair from their range! To make my indecisive tendencies even worse, they said they could customize any pair there and then to exactly how you wanted it. If ever there was a moment to road test a more statement look, now was the time. Umming and ahhing, I finally settled on these beautiful ones, S110. The main body is a beautiful black feather, with a small amount of baby pink fur on top! I am so excited to try these out, and hopefully it will get me to be a lot braver with my make-up looks.

The event was the first time I took the Mulbs out for a day out (its my child) and clearly I own far too many bags as it is, but that didn't stop my eyes being drawn to La Moda. Aiming to offer designer inspired products at an affordable price, they are the perfect way to treat yourself on a budget. I think the Yasemin bag would be ideal for a festival, and at £13, you can't say no really!

When I got home I avoiding my mum as best I could and rummaged through the goody bags! All I can say is WOW. From £30 vouchers for ESPA, to complementary OPI File and Polish treatments and plenty of products to try out, I felt like it was a late birthday present, and incredibly spoilt. One personal touch I absolutely adored was Tor and Ray including a list of bloggers.brands who attended with their site, instagram and twitter! So often I find myself talking to new people, get home and have to stalk twitter if I've not read their blog or heard of the brand before! It's definitely in the details and this one made me go 'aww'.

So thank you to Tor & Ray for putting together such a lovely event, the lovely bloggers I met and the brands for coming down and giving us such amazing discounts and treats! It was the perfect way to spend a Saturday afternoon.


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