Monday, 29 August 2016

Mascara Monday: Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara

Happy Monday everyone :) I have a new mascara to share with you today.

Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara Review

This mascara is from Essence, a brand I haven't tried a huge amount of products from. For a while this brand was hard to get hold of, but it's now available to buy from Wilko.

Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara

This mascara has the cutest packaging - it comes in a black plastic tube that's decorated with rubberised mint details. It looks a bit like a corset laced up; I believe it's designed to look like an evening dress. This packaging makes it look far more expensive than its £3.30 price tag... I don't think it would look out of place on a Too Faced stand.

Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara wand brush applicator

The wand has a standard plastic bristle fiber brush in a conical shape to add length and dramatic volume for a false lash effect.

Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara bare lashes

Bare lashes...

Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara swatch on lashes

With one coat of Lash Princess False Lash Effect. When I first used this mascara I really wasn't impressed - the formula was really wet so it clumped up horribly. I ended up leaving it open for a day and that dried out the formula slightly to give the result you see here. It really darkens, lengthens and volumises my lashes for a dramatic look that isn't too heavy or clumpy. I like it, and I'm glad I was able to make the formula work for me! I would prefer more definition, but I'm being nitpicky.

Even though I had to leave it open to dry out the formula before I could enjoy it, I do really like this mascara and the cute packaging plus the affordable price make it a steal. I need to try more from Essence - do you have any recommendations?

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Lush Oxford Street: Ylang Song Bath Bomb

Hi everyone :) I haven't written a Lush review in ages, and I want to apologise for how slack things have been recently. I've mentioned the fact that I've been on holiday and have started a new job this month, and I'm also moving house in a week... I'll post a proper life update post soon, but until then you'll just have to believe me when I say things have been hectic! Hobbies like my little blog do unfortunately have to take a back seat when major changes are happening.

Today I'll be sharing an Oxford Street exclusive bath bomb with you - it's one I nearly missed instore due to how unassuming it looks.

Lush Ylang Song Bath Bomb Review

Let's talk about Ylang Song!

Lush Ylang Song Bath Bomb

Firstly. I'm really annoyed that this picture is out of focus - I didn't realise until I uploaded the photos onto my laptop and I'd used the bath bomb by that point so I couldn't retake it. Luckily enough, Ylang Song is fairly simple in terms of looks so you're not missing much :P It's a large, white bath bomb with a dried flower pressed into the top.

Lush Ylang Song Bath Bomb in bath

In the bath, Ylang Song starts off fairly boring - it turns the water milky and soft.

Lush Ylang Song Bath Bomb in bath

I was pleased to discover the centre of this bath bomb is an amazing grass green - I love surprise colour changes! The bathroom also filled with the scent of the oils the bath bomb contains: ylang Ghana, rosewood, neroli and rose absolute created a sweet and floral scent.

Lush Ylang Song Bath Bomb in bath

Ylang Song also contains peony, yellow rose and purple everlasting flower petals which filled the bath. I did think the petals looked a bit sad to be honest, but I loved the resulting green water. The scent was nice but it didn't linger particularly.

This bath bomb cost £3.35 in store and is slightly more expensive at £3.95 when it appears on the Kitchen. It's not one I would rush to try again because whilst the colour change was fun, the scent wasn't anything special and it didn't last particularly well.

What Oxford Street bath bombs have you managed to try so far?

P.S.  I want to take the time credit the wonderful Jen of All Things Lush UK.  She's an absolute superstar when it comes to Lush reviews and her posts have helped me fill in any gaps in terms of ingredients for my reviews - the fact that these exclusives aren't on the website can make it hard to know what's in everything!  Do check out her blog and give her a follow because she's great.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Max Factor Masterpiece Colour Precision Eye Shadow in Golden Green & Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner in Green: Review & Swatches

I think Max Factor is one of my favourite high street brands. The prices are a little higher, but more often than not I'm really pleased with the products I've tried. Today I have one hit and a miss to share with you!

Max Factor Masterpiece Colour Precision Eye Shadow in Golden Green & Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner in Green Review

Let's talk about the Masterpiece Colour Precision Eye Shadow in Golden Green and the Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner in Green.


Max Factor Masterpiece Colour Precision Eye Shadow in Golden Green

I'm not usually a big fan of cream eye shadows, but I loved the pretty colour of this one and I was intrigued by the formula. The eye shadow comes in a transparent plastic tube that allows you to see how much product is left. I of course opted for Golden Green, but there are 4 other more neutral shades available.

Max Factor Masterpiece Colour Precision Eye Shadow in Golden Green wand applicator

The wand has a spongy doefoot applicator that works well with the consistency of the product. 

Max Factor Masterpiece Colour Precision Eye Shadow in Golden Green swatch on arm

The product has a light, almost moussey cream texture that feels cooling on the skin. It's pigmented but not overly so meaning you can build up to the desired intensity. Golden Green is a pretty cool-toned olive green. I'll show it on my eyes at the bottom of the post!


Max Factor Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner in Green

This is an automatic eyeliner in a fun electric green shade - I love wearing a pop of liner on the lid as an easy go-to makeup look, and so I gravitate towards liners like this. The packaging is fairly basic, but it features a colour coded lid which is handy if you have several of the other 8 shades available.

Max Factor Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner in Green

The nib is thin and flat, very much like an automatic pencil. You twist up from the bottom to expose more of the eyeliner. Unfortunately, once I twisted it up it wouldn't twist back down - I don't know if this is a problem with just my particular eyeliner or if this is a packaging issue across the board.

Max Factor Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner in Green swatches on arm

The shade Green is stunning - a vibrant lime green with a slightly shimmery finish. Unfortunately, I found the liner wasn't as pigmented or creamy as I'd have liked, and I had to press quite hard to get this level of colour payoff... doesn't bode well for using it on the delicate eyelids!

Max Factor Masterpiece Colour Precision Eye Shadow in Golden Green & Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner in Green on eyes

In this photo I am wearing the Colour Precision Eye Shadow all over my lid and the Excess Intensity Longwear Eyeliner as my eyeliner. The eyeshadow applies easily and dries down fairly quickly - I simply blended out the edges with my fingers. It wears well, with very very minor creasing after several hours that is only really visible if you take up close photos! The eyeliner on the other hand was a nightmare to apply. I had to use lots of pressure to get a solid line of colour and the nib kept snapping - I probably got more eyeliner on the floor than I did on my eyes, and I actually found the pencil ran out after only being used around 5 times due to how much product wastage there was. Once on it looked and wore well, but it's not worth it!

I really like the eye shadow but the eyeliner is a waste of money due to how difficult it is to apply and how much product gets wasted. I've actually had a similar negative experience with a Max Factor eyeliner before (see here) so I don't think I'll buy one from them again - I'll stick to their other products, which I love.

What's your favourite high street brand?

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Barcelona Haul

Hi everyone :)

I wanted to share some of the items I picked up with you whilst I was in Barcelona last week. You can read about my adventures here!


Going on holiday to somewhere in Europe means one thing... Sephora! I also picked up some bits from other shops too.


Kat Von D Lip Vixen Duo 

This kit contains mini sizes of the Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Outlaw and Studded Kiss Lipstick in Noble. I was originally planning to buy a full size of Outlaw, so I thought this kit would be a better way to try more products, plus I'll never actually finish a full size.


I'd heard nothing but good things about this eyeshadow formula, so I couldn't resist picking up a beautiful green shade.


This liner wasn't something I was expecting to pick up, but when I swatched it instore the gorgeous formula and deep green colour called my name!

Tony Moly Latte Art Strawberry Latte Cream-In Scrub

I was really impressed by the selection of Korean beauty products in Sephora, and I had to have this super cute novelty face scrub. It's strawberry scented so I couldn't say no ;)


I actually bought this in duty free at the airport, not Sephora. You can't beat a new liquid lipstick and I was lacking a pretty nude everyday sort of shade.

Mercadona Monogotas Melon

I picked up this perfume from a Spanish supermarket called Mercadona - I believe this is a line of perfume only available at this store. It's designed for teenagers as the scents are quite simple, sweet and fruity... this melon scent smells just like a sweet and juicy cantaloupe!


I did pick up some other bits and pieces, but they were presents for other people. I will review the items I've shared here as and when I can, but I start a new job next week so things are going to be a bit sporadic for a little while!

What would you like to see reviewed first?

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

A Week in Barcelona

Hi everyone :) Long time no see! I was away on holiday for most of last week in beautiful Barcelona, and today I'll be sharing some photos of what we got up to. I went with my lovely friend Kirsty.

Monday

We flew out on Monday after a horrendous 5 hour delay - there was a problem with our plane which meant we got stuck at the airport for ages. To be fair to easyJet, they kept us well informed and have refunded us the cost of our flights which is brilliant. Once we arrived, we explored the local area around our hotel and found somewhere to grab dinner - tapas, of course!


Our hotel!



A gorgeous fountain right outside our hotel, and the view from the roof - which had a pool and a bar :D

Tuesday

On Tuesday we headed to the Sagrada Familia, which is an incredible church designed by Gaudi. Unfortunately, we didn't think to get tickets beforehand and they'd all sold out when we arrived, but we had a look at the outside of the building.





The building is still being constructed but as you can see, the carved stone designs are incredible. It should be finished in the next 30 years.

We then headed to La Rambla, a well known tourist spot. It's a very long road lined with trees, shops and markets. It's more expensive than other places due to being a tourist trap - we actually ended up getting some sangria here and were horrified at our bill!


Of course, we got gelato :)

Wednesday

On Wednesday, we had a free morning so we explored a little further afield around our hotel. It turns out the Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya was only a 10 minute walk away, and the building is absolutely stunning, surrounded by greenery and fountains.



The museum is behind us - it really is a gorgeous building.



Views from the museum - so beautiful!



We ended up stumbling across the area where the Olympics were held in Barcelona in 1992. It was very peaceful here. I took a snap of the huge Montjüic Communications Tower, designed to look like an athlete holding the Olympic flame.

That afternoon, we headed to Park Güell, one of the bigger Gaudi works in Barcelona. It was originally designed to be a residential area for upper class citizens but it became a public park later on. It features the classic multi-coloured mosaics Gaudi is known for.



A photo with the famous El Drac mosaic lizard!

Thursday

On Thursday we returned to the Sagrada Familia to look inside as we'd managed to book tickets online. It was truly breathtaking.



Being able to get this close to the building meant the intricate engravings on the doors and walls were more visible.






The stained glass windows of the church create a rainbow effect inside the building, and as you can see the ceilings have beautiful mosaic designs too. I'm not religious at all but it was a very special place to visit.


After we'd finished at the church, we ended up getting a bus tour like old ladies! We returned to La Rambla for more gelato and shopping.

Friday

On Friday we headed to Tibidabo, which is an amazing old fashioned theme park located at the top of a mountain. To get there, we had to take the metro, a train, an old-fashioned tram and then a really fun funicular train up the mountain but it was so worth it.





There was a great mix of old fashioned and modern rides at Tibidabo, and it was also much bigger than it first appeared.


The view from the top was amazing!



There's also another beautiful cathedral alongside the theme park. Barcelona buildings are stunning!

Saturday

We flew back on Saturday afternoon, so we spent the morning doing last minute shopping and sorting our bags out.

I had the best time in Barcelona - the weather was amazing (high 20s), the food was cheap and incredible quality, our hotel was great, public transport was easy to use and we fit so much into one week. I ate so much calamari and chorizo and drank more sangria and mojitos than I thought was humanly possible!





Some extra photos!

I would love to return to Barcelona one day because it's such a beautiful and vibrant city. I haven't been on a proper holiday in so long and I really appreciated my time away. Definitely make a trip there if you can!