Wednesday, 23 January 2013

No7 Cleansers for all skin types!

With the money off vouches and the 3 for 2 offer this month, I'm in No7 heaven. At the start of the year I picked up a gift set (a gift to myself!) in the Boots Sale to try out some products in the Beautiful Skin range. 
I was pleasantly surprised and purchased some cleansers from the range. 

I decided to review for you a selection of their cleansers aimed at different skin types. All No7 are hypo-allergenic and just plain dandy really.
All products from the No7 Beautiful Skin Range
Top to bottom:  No7 Hot Cloth Cleanser £9.95,
 Cleansing Water for normal to oily skin £9,
 Cleansing Balm for dry/very dry skin £9.

So I'll start with the Cleansing water for normal to oily skin. I'll say now that this is not my skin type. So although I have tried it and find it nicely refreshing as a cleanser, I'm reviewing it on how it's transformed my boyfriends skin. (Yes, yes, I'm a pushy girlfriend that gets him to look after his skin and no he doesn't know what a cleanser actually is).
He is a typical oily skin type and I can say that I have noticed a difference in him using this. From what he tells me he uses this at least once every day followed by a toner. A pump or two onto a cotton pad to be wiped over the face does the trick. It's definitely reduced the appearance of excess oil on his skin (less of a shine) and it's now also softer to touch. As I said I've used it too, I think it's a refreshing alternative to the usual cleansers you find but I don't think it removes make-up as well (hopefully not a problem for Laurence).
His personal review on it - 
"This one smells nicest" and "I like it". 
Maybe I should suggest him to start a blog too, where he can say if products are "alright" and fellow men can say "cheers" and "mate".

Next up: The Cleansing Balm for Dry to Very dry skin. So I'm a typical bloody combination skin, I have very small oily areas such as my chin but mostly my skin is dry as a bone. I always look for products for very dry skin hoping it will change my life forever. 

This does everything a cleanser should do. It removes make-up very well and it leaves my skin beautifully soft. I don't find that there's anything in particular that I can fault with it. In fact it's pretty high up there when it comes to high street cleansers. What I can say about all the No7 products I've tried is that they do feel luxurious and my skin thanks me every time I use them.
However, I still don't think this is the best.
It's very thick when on the skin rather than one that sinks straight in, thus alluring me into believing that it can only be a saint for my dry flaky skin. I don't think it's any more hydrating than a cleanser intended for normal skin would be. Oh well, maybe it's just me. It does remove make-up very well and very quickly though which is a sneaky bonus.

Luckily for me the search for a cleanser that changed my life is over.
Lastly, the Hot Cloth Cleanser.
- ta dah!

This is a cleanser that comes with a Muslin Cloth. If you haven't used a cleanser designed for this purpose I highly recommend that you do. Right now! They just feel soooo beautiful during use and after! This one especially. 
It's rubbed in over the top of make-up on dry skin, and removed by dampening a muslin cloth with hot water which is then draped over the face leaving the heat to do the work. You can then use the cloth to slightly polish off any left over product, which also gives a slightly exfoliating effect. 
This does not feel more laborious than using a cotton pad!
                                                                                           - excuse my sister used earlier this week for not giving it a go!
It feels wonderful and as sad as it sounds, I look forward to it. It's intended for all skin types and I think it does fit that but is so moisturising on the skin it leaves even my dry skin very soft to the touch after use. It removes make-up very well, even eye make-up such as mascara. 

It comes in a box, like so! And it contains a 200ml bottle (actually larger than the other cleansers) and one muslin cloth. I wash the cloth with just warm water and a little soup after use and hang to dry for the next day. I love the feel of it so much that I sometimes reheat the cloth with water and drape over my face multiple times. This isn't necessary and can be considered mad, but I just love it.

I've already re-purchased this item!

I love a pump dispenser me. This might seem like an odd thing to write about in a review but because of the size it dispenses the perfectly right amount in one pump. Exciting right? No.. just me?

Last but not least I'd also recommend this, the No7 Soft & Soothed Gentle Toner for £8, to use after any of the cleansers listed above as it's just a very good toner for all skin types. 

How much can one person write about cleansers? Good lord! 

Have you tried out any other products of the No7 range? Let me know what you thought.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

MAC Red Lips

Top to Bottom: MAC Viva Glam 1 (£14), MAC Cherry Lip Pencil (£11.50), MAC Russian Red  Tinted Lipglass (£13.50).
So I've been using this trio a lot lately, they're not all exact matching shades but I've fallen in love with each product and they work beautifully together! What you need to know about me is that I only wear bold lipstick and it's mostly reds. So for me I look for high pigmentation, clean lines and most importantly one that lasts!

Let's talk about the lipstick!

Firstly, I don't remember what my life was like before I started using MAC Lipsticks (dramatic, I know). But it's true, I will never buy another brand of lipsticks ever again. I used to use Maybelline 24 Hour Lipstick (I still highly recommend this, I've worn it before for a two day drinking bender and woke up with it still in tact) and although it lasts longer than a lipstick, it doesn't have the same texture and will dry out your lips. MAC lipsticks last better than any other lipstick I've used whilst still hydrating your lips -  what more could you want.

Viva Glam 1 is a matte deep red. This lipstick was actually part of my 18th birthday present from my gorgeous sister, she knows me too well! I'm pale skinned with dark hair, as is she, so she went into the store asking for a colour to suit our complexion and I think it just looks beautiful. - keep that in mind because that's a really good way of buying make-up as presents! 
I tend to apply it with a lip brush as I find it difficult to get a even line with just the lipstick however I invested in a Lip Pencil for when I'm on the go.

As you can tell, they are not all matching colours. The lip liner is close to Viva Glam 1 but a slightly lighter shade and I would say a slightly pinky red too. I bought this because it's a colour that goes well under ALL of my red lipsticks, bright or dark. It's also really smooth to apply. 

I'm not normally one to wear a lipgloss (they're sticky and annoying) but I thought I'd give it a go, make a change, be ambitious even. I can tell you now, it is sticky. I would not recommend this for an event where you are eating or even drinking much actually. It does transfer onto glasses, although magically stays on your lips too, and without a lip liner I suspect it's very likely to bleed. However they do a huge variety of lipglass so maybe a Pro Longwear might be the one for me! What I love about it is that it's extremely pigmented, as you can see on my hand swatch! So far I've only worn it over my lipstick but I'm sure you could wear it without too. What you see in the tube is what you get! It has a beautiful high shine too it and I find it's fantastic for parties.

All 3 of these shades are beautiful and I could not recommend MAC lipsticks enough to you!
What's your favourite MAC product? Let me know!

Friday, 11 January 2013

Be more ambitious this new year.

So, a new year is here and another one has passed. The last year held many great things for me and I can only think that some of it was down to the new years resolution I set myself last January. I'm not normally one to set silly tasks just because it's a new year on the Calender but last year I felt it would be good to set myself some personal goals. I was in my first year of studying to be a Make-Up Artist and there was so much I wanted to try but I was too afraid to try in case I wasn't ready. Just little things like booking a photographer to get some Portfolio shots. So for 2012 my resolution was to... "Be more ambitious".

I am so glad I stuck to it and here is what I achieved!
Photography: Bruce Cleghorn
Models (Top to Bottom): Natalie De Luna, Charlotte Connolly.
 I worked with a Photographer for some Portfolio pictures the following month and here are my favourite pictures! It may not be my greatest work but it gave me the confidence I needed in my skills, and for that I am so proud of myself!

Model: Ciara Baron, find her here.

 With this new confidence I started taking any opportunities given to me (which is crucial when going into this industry) and started using my skills to help out other students at college. I did make-up for the photo-shoots of fashion and photography students as well as creating zombie make-up for a short film done by the media students too! 

I also qualified my first year of college, overall achieving a Distinction! This also required entering a body art competition at The Anvil Theatre as well as producing more photo shoots displaying my Make-Up.
Model: Tia Holland
All the hard work started to pay off towards the end of the year. In August I created the Make-Up for Nic Dawson Kelly's new music video, "Old Valentine" which you can view here.

I was also asked to do the Make-up for BBC South Today presenters in August for the live show of BBC Children in Need. I don't think I can even begin to describe how exciting this was for me! It was an incredible experience as well as an amazing insight into the industry! 
I also met Pudsey. woohoo.

Inspired by what I achieved this year I have decided to carry this on into 2013, starting with this! A blog! I  spend a LOT of my time reading beauty blogs and I wanted to try it out myself, being ambitious and all! However I have never done anything like this before and am quite frankly pretty clueless so please bare with me while I get to grips with all the techy wizz, which has never been my thing. I'm hoping to start posting reviews and tips on products soon but please do send me a tweet or get into contact if you would like to see anything in particular!
Thank you if anyone has read this, I hope it's inspired you to be a little more ambitious this year.