Thursday 27 February 2014

Topshop Gloss Ink | Sloe Gin

Following on from yesterday's post on a holographic Topshop nail varnish, I'm coming to you today with another new love from the Topshop make up range. 
I swear I love their make up much more than I love their overpriced clothes.
(For reference, that's Topshop 'Profound' on my nails too!)

The Gloss Inks are a new addition to the Topshop make up stands and come in 5 different shades. I chose mine in quite rush and upon reflection, I probably wouldn't have picked the shade Sloe Gin had I had a better opportunity to swatch and decide. I do love it, don't get me wrong, but it's a very brave shade and not all that practical for every day wear. Plus, it's not a very 'me' kinda shade.. but I guess it does us all good to step out of our comfort zones every now and again. 

It comes in a smaller-than-average standard lipgloss tube, with a doe foot sponge applicator and matte black packaging, accentuated with glossy text and still keeping in touch with classic Topshop packaging with the stripes on the tube. It does seem much more upmarket and classy than the usual packaging, not to mention more durable and less likely to get in a state after a couple of trips out in the handbag - Yes, I'm looking at the lipsticks in the white tubes!!

The doe foot sponge applicator is great and seems to come out with the perfect amount of product for one application. It's very simple to apply and I went straight onto my lips with it, no faffing about, and it was opaque and good to go all in one quick, swift motion.  

All looks good, but I've got some big time issues with it, mainly the problem with colour transfer. It's absolutely awful for getting onto your teeth, even after the 'finger trick' (Google it if you're not sure) and after rubbing it off the teeth (it can stain the teeth too!) it almost immediately finds it's way back onto there again. Being such a bold colour this isn't ideal because it's hardly subtle.

I wore the colour all day yesterday, from 9am until around 7pm and it still had a slight hint of the stain but no gloss remaining by that time. The glossy finish lasted around 3-4 hours, and after that it was just the colour stain remaining. However, I did leave bright pink lip smears on every glass/mug/fork that I used throughout the day, even after blotting, which is pretty gross.

It leaves me in a difficult position now for when I actually wear this lip product. It's bright, bold, beautiful and really long lasting, so I'd normally pick a product like this for evenings out or a meal; any occasions when you don't want to faff with touch-ups.. but leaving lipstick prints on glasses and cutlery just isn't classy.. 
I've tried to blot it does but it still likes to transfer, no matter what.
What would you do?
It's a shame because I really love the colour and finish of it!

Topshop Gloss Ink in Sloe Gin - £8.00 | LINK

What do you think?
Thanks for reading!
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Wednesday 26 February 2014

Mid-Week Mani | Holo Nails

Hope you're all well.

I'm coming to you today with a quick little mid-week mani. As it's my day off in forever, it's the first chance I've had to actually have nice nails and take the time to give them a good taking care of. Unfortunately, they're in a sorry state and aren't perfectly shaped or smoothed at the moment, but that won't stop me from sharing with you my new favourite nail varnish from Topshop

I'm a big fan of Topshop nail varnishes with a total of 12 in my collection now, but Moondance is a unique little one within the bunch because it has a holographic finish. The application of this is my least favourite as it was quite difficult to work with and looked quite streaky and patchy at first; it's definitely not one to apply in a rush because there was no 'put it on and go' element to it at all. The photos actually show this varnish with three coats because that's what it took to get an even finish. It's not gritty or grainy; it does have a smooth finish but it did dry down to be semi-matte so I had to make sure I added on a super glossy topcoat (Seche Vite) to finish the look properly.  

Aside from the negative application and difficult formula, the end result is really quite pretty and eye catching. In dull light the effect doesn't show the same and looks like a plain blue/silver metallic varnish, but in bright light or sunlight it really does look special and I'm a huge fan! I think it'd make a great varnish for a night out or for summer days when brighter light is more likely to catch the nails and show off the true potential of the colour.

Topshop Nails in 'Moondance' - £6.00 | LINK

What do you think of holographic nails?
Thanks for reading! 

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Saturday 22 February 2014

Retractable Real Techniques Winners and Discount Code

Hey kids.
Instead of just tweeting about it, I thought that I'd throw together a blog post that announces the two winners of my recent Retractable Real Techniques Brush Giveaway. The giveaway received quite a bit of attention, and more than 4,000 entries(!), so I thought it only fair to make sure that it was clear that winners had be drawn and who they are.

But that's not all for today..
This was mentioned in my original post on the brushes, but in case you missed this part, I do have a 15% discount code for the site My Pretty Face Place ( which you can use on any Real Techniques or EcoTools purchases.
They also stock brands such as NYX, Sigma, Stila, EOS, and more.
- Use the code: 02cosmeticcrave15 at the checkout
- The code is only valid for the month of February (2014)
- The code is only valid on Real Techniques and EcoTools products
My Pretty Face Place ship to absolutely anywhere in the world (shipping costs apply) and especially for UK residents the Real Techniques brush prices are far lower than what we'd pay on the highstreet.
I wish I'd seen that they sell the Powder Brush for £5.98 before I spent nearly £11 on one in Boots!
So, if you were eager to win one of these brushes, but sadly weren't one of the lucky ones, then you can always make a sly little order and spare a couple of pennies to get them anyway.

Using the 02cosmeticcrave15 discount code, the Kabuki Brush would be £5.05 and the Bronzer Brush would be £6.62 (plus p&p).

Thank you to every single entrant of my giveaway, and a big congratulations to Katie and to Jemma. You should both have an e-mail in your inbox from me asking for your postal details! :) 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for reading!
Have a great weekend guys!
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*02cosmeticcrave15 is not an affiliate code.
I earn no commission from sales, it's simply a discount for my readers.
Check out my February Gold advertiser, Elysia, and her amazing blog:

Tuesday 4 February 2014

Models Own 50% Off Sale Haul

Unless you've been under a rock / nowhere near social media for the past fortnight, then you should know that Models Own have recently been heavily campaigning to reach 250,000 Facebook likes to trigger the start of a huge 50% off sale. Well, they made it. I was there on the site with my basket full at 10am ready to check out (eager beaver) and surprise surprise the website did crash from the huge amount of traffic, but thankfully 90 minutes of refreshing later and my order was successfully completed with my new shades on their way to me. 

It's quite apparent that shimmer and sparkles were on the brain when I made this order, because with the exception of one pastel shade, all the rest that I ordered have a very glitzy vibe. Here's what I ordered, for £2.50 a bottle: 

Apple Pie - Fruit Pastel (scented)
As much as I prefer neons, brights and glitters, I couldn't resist ordering this pretty pastel green. More of a soft minty green I'm sure this will be a popular spring/summer shade. The new(ish) fruit pastel range polishes are actually scented, and this one is supposed to smell like apple pie. As much as I'm sure it's inappropriate to encourage the sniffing of nail varnish.... it does have a faint apple-y whiff. I've got the Banana Split (yellow) polish from this range and I hated it, but I'm hoping for better things with Apple Pie. Despite the random numbers(?) printed onto the side of the bottle, it seems to have been a good choice!

Mystic Mauve - Champagne/Shimmer
Such an underrated nail shade - why have I never heard anybody harping on about Mystic Mauve before? It's gorgeous! Definitely my favourite shade from the whole bunch, this champagne shimmer polish is completely smooth and untextured (i.e. it's not a glitter polish), but it sparkles, shimmers and shines like nothing else. In a perfect lilacy-pink shade this is going to be a Valentine's Day essential. 

Purple Haze - Glitter
Continuing with the glitter love, I ordered Purple Haze as an extension of my love for the blue glitter: Bluebelle. The same type of texture of finish, Purple Haze is a deep and rich purple tone as a slight variation to the deep blue shade. I could probably take or leave this shade, because even though yes it is very pretty, but it doesn't stand out to me as anything particularly special or eye catching ..and I'm sure I already have a polish identical to this one hiding somewhere.

Juicy Jules - Glitter
One that I've been after for ages, is glitter polish Juicy Jules. When the light hits it, it goes disco ball crazy. It's so pretty! I know it'll be a bitch to take off, as all glitter polishes are, but I know for certain I'll get so much wear out of this shade - you can get never go wrong with silver sparkles!

Glitter Mini Pack: Scarlet Sparkle, Emerald City, Bluebelle (£8.00 £4.00 for 3)
There's two packs of these glitter minis because I thought they were too perfect to pass up being just £4 and I thought I'd include one in a giveaway - I'm currently compiling some bits and pieces for a (maybe 3,000 follower) celebratory giveaway to thank my readers for all their support. The small sizes are perfect and although it is a kinda Christmassy themed colour range, they're still gorgeous and Bluebelle is one of my top favourites for winter nails so it needs to be shared! Scarlet Sparkle is amazing because the glitter particles are suspended in a red tinted varnish as opposed to clear, so there's no need to use a base coat and it looks amazing worn alone. 

Coral Glaze* and Naked Glow*- New: HyperGel 
I didn't actually order these two new HyperGel shades, they were sent to me as a press sample release, but as they arrived at the same time as my order I thought I'd include them in this post anyway. Currently these brand new Hyper-Gel varnishes are on pre-release in the 50% off sale for just £2.50, but they'll be properly re-released and become readily available from 12th February (at £5 a bottle). They're supposed to be gel effect varnishes, without the need to be cured under a UV lamp (think Barry M Gelly Hi-Shine and Bourjois 1 Second Gel). I'll do a full post on these two closer to their proper release date, but I think Coral Glaze is set to be a summer hit!

If you don't think that I exercised self-restraint this time around, then take a sneak peek at my order from the last time Models Own held a 50% off sale (when they reached 100,000 Facebook likes) and I went crazy ordering 14 nail varnishes here.

I'm happy with all of my purchases, especially Mystic Mauve, and I hope that I've maybe inspired you to take a little look at the Models Own Sale in their few remaining hours and maybe given you an idea of some shades to pick. Some of my general Models Own favourites are: Naked Shimmer, Northern Lights, Bluebelle, Hedonist, and Bora Bora - Check them out!

Use code HALFPRICE for 50% off.
Sale ends Tuesday 4th Feb (Midnight GMT)

Thanks for reading! 
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*(c/o) Wizard PR
Check out my February Gold advertiser, Elysia, and her amazing blog:

Sunday 2 February 2014

New: Retractable Real Techniques Brushes | Review & Giveaway

Have I got something exciting in store for you today!

Thanks to My Pretty Face Place I've had the opportunity to try out two of the newly released make up brushes from Real Techniques in their new retractable line: the Retractable Kabuki Brush* and the Retractable Bronzer Brush*. But, even is better is that I've actually been given two of each brush so that I can give one of each away to you lovely lot! Stay tuned to the end of the post for giveaway deets or purchase information (they seem to be like gold dust at the moment).

Retractable Bronzer Brush - Your Base / Flawless
This duo fibre brush with two different textured bristles is labelled as being perfect for 'creating a natural finish by expertly blending bronzer or finishing powder'. The Bronzer Brush is less dense than the Kabuki but covers a wider area so this would be best suited for the two uses listed by RT; application of a finishing/setting powder, and all over dusting of bronzer. Something light over a large area. 

Retractable Kabuki Brush - Your Finish / Perfected 
The kabuki brush is again intended for use with powder products; blush, bronzer, setting powder; meaning that both brushes essentially have the same use and purpose, but they are versatile in the way in which you can choose to use them. The Kabuki Brush has a smaller and more precise head with tapered bristles, making it more appropriate for precision application of powder blushers, highlights and touch ups of powder.

I would suggest that neither brush is appropriately dense enough to use for application of liquid foundation at all, but the kabuki brush could work okay with cream blush ..I tried it once but it didn't seem to be able to buff it in as well as I would have liked, so I'll just be sticking to powder products with these. 

The standard is high as with all Real Techniques brushes with the bristles completely synthetic, cruelty free and ridicccculously soft! The cap slides up protect the bristles which makes them great for transporting around. I don't often take a brush out and about with me for touch ups because they end up getting grubby and a bit mushed up if you're not careful - scarred for life from the time the zip of a bag mangled up the bristles of my favourite powder brush! A simple plastic cap can alleviate all these issues and make it hygienic and convenient to take one of these compact brushes 'on the go' with you. Plus, they're lightweight, durable, and look pretty cool too! 

One thing I did notice is that these brushes are actually 'by Sam & Nic Chapman', as opposed to the previous branding of 'by Samantha Chapman' - looks like sister #2 has got in on the action this time and lent a helping hand into the design of these new brushes. Along with the Retractable Kabuki Brush and the Retractable Bronzer Brush, other new releases are a Retractable Lip Brush and a Silicone Liner Brush. 

These brushes were apparently released nationwide on 27th January, but I've not seen a trace of them in Boots at all, and they're not on the Boots or Feel Unique websites either.. So, if you're desperate to get your hands on these brushes (or any more from the Real Techniques collection) but you don't fancy your chances in a giveaway then they're all available to buy on who deliver internationally and you can use the code 02cosmeticcrave15 to get 15% off any of your purchases!

Retractable Kabuki Brush - £6.04 on MPFP
Retractable Bronzer Brush - £7.86 on MPFP

As a little treat for reading, you can enter the below giveaway to win one of the two available brushes! It's simple to enter, the only hard part is the choice of Kabuki or Bronzer Brush?!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

- There will be two winners. 
- One will win the Kabuki Brush, the other will win the Bronzer Brush.
- The giveaway prizes were provided by My Pretty Face Place.
- The giveaway is open internationally!
- The winners will be drawn using Rafflecopter and contacted by myself via e-mail on 22.02.14. 
- Entries made using accounts solely for competition purposes will not be valid.

Good luck!
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* The 2 brushes for review purposes and the 2 brushes for the giveaway 
were all provided courtesy of My Pretty Face Place.

Check out my February Gold advertiser, Elysia, and her amazing blog:
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