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    For those of you, like me, who haven't quite plucked up the courage to splash out on Charlotte Tilbury's Film Star Bronze & Glow, there's a new product in town that does a very similar job. Now I can't do an exact comparison as I don't even own the product but I have swatched it (and drooled on it) in person. There's no comparison when it comes to luxury, the Bronze & Glow is beautiful and the product itself is clearly more expensive and luxurious. 

    If it's a contour and highlight kit you were after though, this one will do the trick. It's from Kiko and it's part of their new Daring Game collection. There are two shades available, Radiant Honey which is lighter (and probably more my shade) and Precious Sienna which is the one I have above. On one side you have your contour, split into two sections, a lighter and a darker bronze. On the other and thankfully smaller side is a highlighter. The bronzer is matte and easy to blend and the highlighter has the right amount of shimmer in without being too sparkly. 

    This palette is £15.90, so although it's not cheap, it's definitely a lot cheaper than the £49 Charlotte Tilbury option. It's limited edition so next time you're near a Kiko store try it out and see if it works for you.  

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    It's been nearly two years since I wrote this post, naming Clinique's High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara the "best mascara ever" and honestly it's still to this day my favourite. There are a few drugstore mascaras that I like but until now I've never found another mascara to wow me like the Clinique one did. 

    I say until now because there is a new mascara amongst my collection and it's definitely giving my Clinique one a run for it's money. The Stila Mile High Lashes Mascara has a really bendy wand with v-shaped bristles that are supposed to wrap around the lashes as you apply. I find it really grips to the lashes well and applies a good amount of product from the root up. It's jet black and gives loads of length and curl. It doesn't give quite as much volume as the Clinique one but definitely does well with length and curl. 

    I really love it and will be using this one up in no time! 

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  • 09/09/14--23:00: DIY: SIMPLE PHOTO WALL

  • One of my favourite ways to relax is to get a bit creative and give myself a project. Last week when I was about to create my own little photo wall I thought I'd whip out the camera last minute and show you guys how I did it. 

    It's really not rocket science or anything fancy, but if you too wanted to create your own personalised photo wall, this video might inspire you. I spent quite a while collecting together the photos and prints I wanted to use, but I also feel like it's something I can add to and change as I wish.

    So I hope you enjoy this slightly different video and let me know what you think! 

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  • 09/10/14--23:00: CHANEL ROUGE ALLURE GLOSS

  • It seems that there is now a very good reason to look forward to Autumn as these babies launch 3rd October and trust me, by the end of this post you'll be saying BRING-ON-OCTOBER!

    The Rouge Allure Glosses are an extension of the popular and beautifully packaged Rouge Allure lipsticks. The idea is that they're a gloss for women who love lipsticks. Just like a gloss it'll plump the lips and illuminate a smile but like a lipstick it'll give strong colour payoff and will last on the lips. 

    I found the texture of these glosses really quite strange (in a nice way!). The doe-foot applicator holds a pool of product that seems to place the perfect amount onto the lips. Once applied, the very shiny gloss feels somewhat bouncy on the lips. It feels almost like a gel, not too watery, not too sticky. 

    I know that packaging shouldn't be a deciding factor when purchasing beauty products but the click on these... it's to die for! I've really enjoyed wearing these and I especially like the lighter, softer shades. There are 11 shades in the range with 4 of them being limited edition. 

    They're £26 each which is pretty standard for Chanel prices. Something to save your Boots points up for and treat yourself! So when these hit counters on 3rd October I'd recommend giving them a try.

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    So the boys made it!! After months and months of hardcore training, they cycled from the London O2 Arena to the Eiffel Tower in Paris in 24 hours! We are very proud girlfriends. 

    We had a lovely weekend in Paris meeting some of you guys and eating lots with our very tired boyfriends. Here's the vlog of their ride and the weekend Anna and I spent in Paris waiting for them to arrive. Enjoy! 

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    The Body Shop has always been known for their body and skincare products, but over the last couple of years they've really focused on extending their colour range. They now do makeup, brushes and as of October they'll be offering a nail polish range too. 

    This will no doubt be good news for hardcore Body Shop fans! There is a huge range of 24 shades and all polishes are free from formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin and camphor.  They are also dermatologically tested, fully vegan and not tested on animals. 

    For those reasons alone I think these polishes will do really well and will be popular for customers who require those factors ticked off. I tried the shades "Rosy Cheeks" and "Mint Cream" and I was happy with how they applied and lasted. I don't think they're the best I've ever tried, but I was pleasantly surprised and I think for £5 each they're a bit of a bargain. 

    So Body Shop fans watch out in October and nail polish fanatics, well now you have an excuse to browse in The Body Shop!

    Will you be trying these?

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    So are you ready for your first week at Uni? Whether it's your very first year or you're heading back after the Summer, this video should hopefully help you with some makeup ideas. 

    I've created four looks; the club, the hangover, the fancy dress and the lecture. Most can be applied to everyday life (minus the fancy dress) so even if you're not at Uni or College, maybe this will be a useful video for you too. 

    I hope you enjoy it and sorry it's a little bit rushed, it was hard to fit all four looks in without it being half an hour long!! 

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    A few weeks ago I found myself in the beauty hall of Fenwicks New Bond Street (I needed my eyebrows threaded!). I've been in there hundreds of times and I recall my grandma taking me there when I was little. But whilst I lay there having my brows done I realised that I haven't shared this little treasure with you guys and for that, I'm sorry...

    Fenwicks Bond Street, and I'm talking specifically New Bond Street, opened in 1891 which is why I think it has such a wonderful feel inside. If you were to do a quick walk through the beauty hall you'd think it was just like any other, but as well as having very knowledgeable sales assistants Fenwicks have jumped on the Liberty/Selfridges bandwagon and now offer some incredible brands and not only the standard Chanel, YSL etc. 

    There seems to be new brands joining every week but on my last visit I spotted Stila, DHC, Oskia, Lipstick Queen, Suqqu, Zelens, Ojon, REN, BECCA and Louise Young. Some of these brands are really hard to find in store and are limited to buying online. I was particularly excited to see Oskia, a skincare favourite of mine. 

    There's a great mix of high end well known brands and smaller, less known International brands. So next time you're in the Oxford Circus/Bond Street area I'd really recommend taking a look around one of the oldest beauty halls in London. I came home with some great new finds!

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    Before I start this post I want to point out two things... 1) I am under the age of 35 and 2) it's not Winter yet. 

    So now let me explain to you why I've ditched the moisturiser and haven't felt the need to use it in my skincare routine for the past couple of months. My morning routine usually consists of cleansing (Oskia Rennaisance Gel) followed by a serum. My serum of choice has been the Sarah Chapman Intense Hydrating Booster and I've found it seriously helps with the hydration of my skin. It is quite wet feeling though, so after I apply it I usually wait for it to sink right into my skin. Because of the drying process I began to get on with other things and I was forgetting to moisturise before starting my makeup routine. My makeup routine always starts with a hydrating primer though so what I found was that my skin didn't mind missing that moisturising step. The serum and primer seemed to do the job just fine, so if my skin is happy, then I'm happy!

    It wasn't my intention to ditch the moisturiser in the evening either but the more and more I got into oils, the more confused I got about when to apply moisturiser and it just kind of faded out. I love using oils in the evening as they are slightly heavier and way more hydrating. I was also told by my lovely friend Caroline Hirons that serums have water in, so putting oils on top will seal that in. She said that "some brands actually recommend oil after moisturiser for that reason". So what the heck, if my skin is saying no to moisturiser then it's gone. 

    I'll no doubt be introducing it back into my routine come winter, but for now I'm doing just fine without it. 

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  • 09/16/14--11:00: How to master eyeliner

  • I wouldn't go as far as saying I'm an eyeliner pro but I do love wearing it daily and I think it's something that can transform your makeup look.

    In this video I recommend some of my favourite eyeliners along with some tips and tricks on how I apply them. Enjoy! 

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  • 09/16/14--23:00: URBAN DECAY NAKED BASICS 2

  • When Urban Decay bring out anything from their Naked range my ears perk up but when the original basics palette launched it just didn't do it for me. The tiny packaging looked great but I'm not a fan of black eyeshadow or light, skin toned shadows which the basics 1 has a lot of!

    So in true Urban Decay style they've added yet another product to the Naked family and this one is much more up my street! The Basics 2 is housed in the same little palette with 5 matte shadows and 1 satin for highlighting. The overall palette is very cool toned, which isn't usually my day to day thing but something I do like to experiment with. 'Skimp' the highlight shade is pretty for the inner corners of the eye and the buttery texture makes it easy to use with your finger. 'Stark' and 'Frisk' are both base colours but would probably get used the least by me in the palette. 'Stark' is too light for me, but I think 'Frisk' is nice as a cool base. 

    'Cover' is a slightly warmer colour that's perfect for defining the crease and I also enjoyed using 'Primal' over the outer part of the eye to deepen the colour. My favourite shade in the whole palette is definitely 'Undone' as it's really great to use as a dark grey liner right in the root of the lashes. I think that's the shade that really pulls the whole look together! 

    A mix of the shades gives a cool-toned wash over the lids that looks sophisticated and kind of Victoria Beckham-esque. And for matte shadows they're not too chalky or dry, they still hold the sort of quality we all expect from Urban Decay. There is also a double-ended brush that will also be available but personally I'm not a big fan of the shape, so I'll stick to my current brush favourites to apply! 

    So do you need the basics 2? If you have 1 and love it then probably not. But if like me, you weren't a fan of the basics 1, this one gets my approval! 

    Palette available 1st October for £22

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  • 09/17/14--23:00: MORE TO FOLLOW ON INSTAGRAM

  • I take back everything I said about the Instagram Explore page! When they first got rid of the Popular page and replaced it with Explore we were all a bit confused and annoyed, but I've recently changed my mind. 

    I spend a lot of my time on the Explore page, finding new accounts and liking new photos. Apart from the occasional photo of a friend of a friend that I'd rather not see, most of the photos are right up my street! Instagram have made it so that they cater to the sort of photos they know you like. When I first joined Instagram I used it as a way to follow friends or bloggers/youtubers I knew, but I've been on a serious follow spree recently following so many new accounts. It's kind of irrelevant what they do or how many followers they have, I am simply looking for one thing.... good photos. 

    I have quite a specific style that I go for as you can see above. I love monochrome, well thought out, aesthetically pleasing photos. I love food snaps and I especially adore interiors (though it does make me want to redecorate daily!). 

    So if you like any of the snaps above, I'd really recommend following the accounts below. Who are some of your favourites? 

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  • 09/18/14--23:00: DHC'S PRO LIQUID LINER

  • On a recent trip to Fenwicks New Bond Street I came across some DHC products and as I've enjoyed using some of their products in the past I thought I'd take a quick look. DHC is a Japanese brand and is best known for their skincare. 

    I spotted the Liquid Eyeliner EX and it definitely looked worth a try. It was £16, so mid-range for a liquid liner but Japanese brands do makeup so well that I knew I'd be impressed. 

    It's a felt tip liner but the first thing I noticed is that the tip is quite short. My double-ended Tom Ford liner taught me that when it comes to felt tip liners it's definitely easier the longer it is. So, ok, this one is for the more experienced eye liner users... That's fine.

    The formula of the liner is jet black and it dispenses product easily without being too much and too smudgy. It also dries quite fast which is good if you're someone who ends up with liner smeared all over your face. It's also a water-resistant formula so it lasts incredibly well... the whole day for me! 

    Because the tip is so short, you do have to get quite close to the eye to apply. But I found that the whole liner itself was really comfortable and nice to hold. It feels almost like an expensive fountain pen and just sits really nicely in the hand. 

    I've loved using it personally. If you feel quite comfortable with applying liquid liner then I think this is a great one to try, but if you're still a newbie stick to the Soap & Glory Supercat Liner! 

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  • 09/19/14--23:00: WEAR LIFE EATS

  • WEAR //
    I showed these Steve Madden boots in a recent haul video and I wanted to update you on how comfortable/not comfortable they are. It's good news... they don't hurt! I had to get a 6, which is a half size too small for me but as they're leather they do stretch and i've found them to be really comfortable. I really like how they look with skinny jeans and I know I'll get a lot of wear out them in the coming months! 

    LIFE //
    This week I met the Laura Mercier which was a bit of a dream come true. So many people didn't even know that there was an actual person called Laura Mercier behind the brand, but there really is and she's incredible. We sat and chatted over breakfast, looking through her portfolio of impressive magazine cover shoots. She talked us through some of her most memorable shoots with Mariah Carey and Madonna. She told us how she started the brand and how difficult the transition was from behind-the-scenes make up artist to the face of her self-named makeup brand. I asked her a question about balancing lipstick shades with eyeshadows and she told me mine was perfectly balanced - life made. I learnt that her Secret Camouflage was the first product created and one of her favourites to this day, as she says "Secret Camouflage is the guy that never lets me down". She then told us about her new products launching which included some fabulous Christmas gifts and a brand new matte foundation called Smooth Finish Flawless Fluide. The whole experience made me fall in love with the brand all over again.

    EATS //
    If you follow me on Twitter you will 100% know about my recent obsession with Cotton Candy grapes. Yep, you heard me right. Those clever farmers have created a hybrid grape that combines two types, together making a delicious grape that has the taste of cotton candy (or candy floss as we call it!). All the main supermarkets do them now, my favourite ones so far are from Marks & Spencer and Waitrose. I can't get enough, I'm completely addicted!! Buy some. You won't regret it. 

    Happy Saturday and have a great weekend! 

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  • 09/20/14--23:00: NARS Iconic Colour

  • It's not often you see NARS nails round these parts. Despite my love for the brand, their nail polishes haven't really appealed to me in the past. Saying that, they've recently had a little makeover and have changed up a few things, so I gave them a go and here's how I got on...

    The most noticeable change is the new lid. You no longer have to attempt to balance a square lid in your hands as it twists off to reveal a smaller brush inside. Much better. They've upgraded the formula too to now include resins and polymers that improve wear and strengthen nails. The polish has a very high gloss finish which looks really luxurious on the nails. 

    There are an amazing 43 shades on offer which is incredible. I'm wearing 'Fearless' above and 'Dark Room' is one of their newer shades. I'm really impressed and will definitely be adding NARS to my list of top quality nail polishes. 

    The new polishes are out now on counter and online, they're £14.50 each. 

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    This sounds like a weird one I know, but hear me out... When I have last day hair (i.e., I need to wash it asap!) I usually spend the day with it tied up. When it's up and out of my face I always feel like my makeup should be on point and I should spend more time than usual perfecting it. 

    You guys always compliment my makeup when my hair is tied back, so here's the secret... my greasy hair makeup tutorial. 

    ps. I'm using all new products in this video. Enjoy! 

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    For the first time ever, Clarins are offering a gift with purchase with a social conscience. Between 21st September and 4th October you will receive this GWP when you purchase two things from Clarins (one to be skin care). 

    So as I'm sure your beauty brains are already thinking what do I need? I did this post a little while back on my favourite Clarins products and you can now add their exfoliating toner to that list too! 

    The makeup bag is really good quality with a convenient zip and inside you get a Hydrating Cream Mask, Moisture Rich Body Lotion, Exfoliating Cream, Hand and Nail Treatment and Bath and Shower Treatment. 

    So what's the cause? Clarins have partnered with FEED for this gift with purchase so that each makeup bag purchased will provide 10 nutritious school meals through the UN World Food Programme to children in developing countries. To find out more about FEED, click here.  

    So what are you waiting for? Shop! 

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  • 09/22/14--23:00: The Matte Revolution

  • Will Charlotte Tilbury ever release a product I don't like? It seems not. 

    Her latest launch, Matte Revolution, didn't disappoint. A collection of luminous modern-matte long-lasting lipsticks enriched with new generation 3D glowing pigments. The idea is that the lips look lit from within as well as wider and fuller. 

    Matte doesn't have to be dry and flat, Charlotte has somehow made matte lipsticks that are still creamy, easy to wear and luminous. The formula doesn't drag at the lips because it's enriched with Lipstick Tree (yes, that's a real thing) and Orchid extract. It feels like velvet on the lips and you can feel the hydration. The bullet isn't your usual lipstick shape, it's more square and angled making application even easier, especially at the corners. 

    The shades partner up with her 10 iconic makeup looks and some are named after the glamorous ladies she's made up including Sexy Sienna (worn in this video) and Very Victoria. Lost Cherry is a personal favourite (worn in the photo above). 

    The lipsticks are £23, available on counter or online and there are 10 shades available. Swatches here. 

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  • 09/23/14--23:00: BEAUTY CHAT TIME!

  • It's time for another monthly beauty chat and this time it's my turn to host! As usual when we get together things got a little bit weird... warning, there is a LOT of giggling in this one. 

    We've mixed it up a bit with some questions from Twitter but also some from our Paris meetup. I hope you like it! 

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  • 09/24/14--23:00: THE MORNING FACIAL

  • I'm a huge fan of Sarah Chapman products but one of my favourites has always been the overnight facial and I'm already onto my third bottle! You've probably heard me rave about it before as the perfect last step in your evening routine.

    Well they've now added another product to the line and it's the much anticipated morning facial. I've never really been one to use oils in the morning but I do like a good serum, so I was intrigued to see how this felt on the skin. 

    Compared to the overnight facial it's much less oilier and slightly thicker like a serum. It glides onto the skin beautifully and gives the look of full, glowing, healthy skin. It's even better than I'd hoped it would be and my mum has already run out to buy one for herself. It's also another one of those products that can easily replace your moisturiser. Some serums feel like the jam inside a sandwich but some, like this one, are moisturising enough to be used without a moisturiser on top. I really love it and I'm sure you'll see it pop up in this month's favourites video. 

    One to add to the Space NK wish list? 

    Available from Space NK in store and online here for £45

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