Saturday, 31 March 2012

My Top Five: Spring Lip Products

Next up in my Spring top five series is my top five lip products. I love orange and it seems to be everywhere this season which is why three of the five products I've chosen belong to the coral/orange family. I've also picked out a bright pink and a nude shade to add a little bit of variety. In truth, this could have been a top ten or top twenty post but I've been good and stuck to five products.

MAC Viva Glam Nicki
This is one of my most recent purchases from MAC. It's a very bright yellow based pink shade. I can't see myself wearing this much in the autumn or winter so I'm going to wear it as much as I can during the spring and summer. I'll definitely be keeping the rest of my make up very simple when I'm wearing this!

MAC Freckletone
I think this will be my go-to nude shade for spring. I tend to wear warmer toned eyeshadows and blushes so I find this nude works better than something like Blankety because of its peachy undertones. Freckletone has a Lustre finish so it's not particularly long wearing but it's very easy to re-apply on the go.

MAC Tendertone in Purring
I feel a bit bad for including this since it was limited edition and is now sold out almost everywhere. Try your local MAC counter, though as they may still have one or two. This is a deliciously fruity and glossy balm which is pretty sheer. It's not sticky at all and I know I'll be getting a lot of wear out of this product over the coming months.

Topshop Lipstick in Infared
I got this lipstick recently but I've not worn it a lot yet. The shade is much more flattering than you might expect, particularly on warmer skin tones. I'm planning on wearing it with very minimal eye make up (or a huge pair of sunglasses...) I like the finish of this lipstick too, it's got a bit of a sheen to it. 

Revlon Super Lustrous Lip Gloss in Firecracker
Yes, this is another orange/coral product! I love these glosses - the quality is great for the price and best of all, they don't leave a sticky feeling on the lips. They've so easy to wear so this is probably what I'll use when I don't feel like wearing a lipstick. It looks like an orange-red in the tube but on the lips it just looks like a sheer orange.

L-R: MAC Viva Glam Nicki, MAC Freckletone, MAC Purring Tendertone, Topshop Infared, Revlon Firecracker Super Lustrous Lip Gloss

What are your go to spring lip products?

Stace xx

Friday, 30 March 2012

Topshop Cream Blush in Head Over Heels

I picked this up at the weekend and have been using it for the last few days so I thought I'd share my thoughts on the product!

I picked this up in a Topshop store for £6 (or £5.40 with student discount) but it's also available online (link)

The packaging is white with a matte finish. It looks pretty but it quickly starts looking grubby. The compact also includes a decent sized mirror which is useful if you need to reapply on the go.

I am not the biggest fan of cream blushes, to be honest. I feel like I end up rubbing off a lot of foundation when I apply them with my fingers due to their sticky texture. I sometimes find them to be too pigmented and whilst I do love a good dose of blush, I don't want to look like a clown either!

The formula of this Topshop cream blush is excellent for someone like me as it quickly dries down to a powder finish and doesn't interfere with my base underneath. It's also pretty sheer which I like as it means I can layer it to get an amount of colour I'm happy with.

I did try applying this with my fingers but found it easier to apply with a Real Techniques Stippling brush. I looks more even and wears much better when I use a brush. The blush lasts around 5/6 hours on my cheeks when I apply it this way. The skin on my cheeks is 'normal' so if you have very oily skin, you might find this doesn't wear for as long. It's easy to top up throughout the day if necessary.

Sorry for the weird angle! The photo above is just one layer of the blush. I'm around an NC30 in MAC, for reference.

The colour is a peach shade with a hint of pink; right up my street! It looks a lot more frightening in the pan than it does swatched or on the skin. I think it will work on a range of skintones since it is buildable but if you're darker than an NC40 you might struggle to get a great deal of colour from this. 

I hope that was helpful! I'll be trying out the famous Neon Rose shade next week so expect a review on that very soon.

Stace xx

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

My Top Five: Spring Nail Polishes

I had a lot of requests for top five/ten posts and I've been meaning to do a few posts about products I'm excited to use this spring so I'm going to kick things off with my top nail polish picks. In no particular order...

OPI Red Lights Ahead
I wasn't sure I was going to like this when I bought it. I struggle to find reds I like, especially when it comes to bright reds. This, however, is a perfect bright coral-red shade. 

Essie Sand Tropez
Everyone loves a good nude polish, don't they? I have several nude/natural shades but this light beige one is my favourite for spring/summer.

American Apparel Office
This is one of my all time favourite pastel shades. It's not as harsh looking as something like Essie Mint Candy Apple which is a plus for me! 

Chanel April
If you're a fan of darker nail polishes, this shade is a great choice. I'm wearing it right now, actually! It's a dark raspberry pink shade which I can see looking really pretty with gold sandals and a tan if we ever get any sun up here in Glasgow.

China Glaze Custom Kicks
I really like the formula of China Glaze polishes. This shade is very easy to work with and wears like steel. I know a bright turquoise-green shade won't be for everyone but I love it!

I'm going to cheat a little and add a couple of honourable mentions. I didn't think I'd like the OPI Holland collection as much as I do and there are two other bright shades from the collection I can't help but mention here. OPI A Roll In The Hague is a bright orange shade which is probably not for the faint hearted but I'm going to wear it lots in the summer. OPI Kiss Me On My Tulips is a crowd-pleasing bright pink which isn't too warm or cool toned so it should be flattering on everyone. I'm fussy about pinks too so the fact I like this one must mean it's a winner!

What are your top nail polish picks for spring?

Stace xx

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

My Hair Care Routine

I had a few requests to do a post about my hair care routine recently and I have to say, I was pretty surprised. I do very little with my hair which is why I don't talk about hair products very often. 

My hair is long and very straight. It's naturally quite shiny and is therefore prone to getting greasy very quickly. I hardly ever use heat on my hair and if I do it's just a quick blast of the hair dryer before I head out the door. I've been using the same line of products since the start of this year but prior to that I had a very simple routine so I've kept it that way!

I currently use four different products on a regular basis, three of which are from the Macadamia Natural Oil line. 

For shampoo I use the Macadamia Natural Oil Rejuvenating Shampoo (£12.00 for 300ml link). I'm on my second full sized bottle of this. This shampoo is sulphate free which is great for me as it doesn't leave any horrible build up in my hair. It is very runny so if you do try this, don't let that alarm you and be careful not to use too much. I know someone who got a trial size set and they said the 100ml shampoo only lasted them 3 washes! That size lasted me at least a month; around 20 washes. I really like this shampoo but it is pretty pricey and I have a bottle of Aussie Mega shampoo so I'll probably use that before repurchasing another bottle of this.

After I get out of the shower, I run a little of the Macadamia Natural Oil Healing Oil Treatment (£22.75 for 125ml link) through the ends of my hair. I find it keeps my hair looking shiny and healthy. On the few occasions when I've skipped using this, I've noticed a difference. I really like that this has a pump; I usually use one full pump but if you've got shorter hair and need less product, it's easy to control. I've been using this for almost three months now and the bottle is still about 85% full so whilst this may seem pricey initially, it's worth the investment. 

Every ten days or so, I use the Macadamia Natural Oil Deep Repair Masque (£19.50 for 250ml link.) The instructions state you should use this once or twice a week but I found it to be too conditioning to use so often. I expect anyone with very dry hair will love this. 

Finally, if I'm going to blow dry my hair, I spritz in some of the KMS California Free Shape Quick Blow Dry (£8.75 for 200ml link). I received a sample of this in a previous Carmine box and I liked it so I picked up the full size. This does speed up my blow drying time but it also leaves my hair feeling really soft. I've sprayed this in my hair a few times and not blow dried it but it still gives me the lovely soft feeling.

I should point out that due to my grease-prone hair, I do use dry shampoo but I'm not overly picky with which brand I use. I don't like Batiste because it leaves too much white residue in my dark hair. Tresemme is my favourite brand for dry shampoo but I find it to be a bit overpriced so I usually just go for whatever's on offer at the time.

Also, if you keep an eye on, they often offer co-buys on Macadamia Natural Oil products or sets. 

Phew! I hope that was useful to some of you!

Stace xx

Monday, 26 March 2012

Blog Sale (again!)

This is just a quick post to let you all know that I've added a blog sale page again and there are some nice products in there which just aren't getting enough love from me. If you're interested, either click here or go to the tab above this post somewhere!

Thanks for reading!

Stace xx

Haul: Topshop & Boots

I've not been into town for a while and I had a few clothing items to return so I popped into Topshop and Boots to pick up some new make up. There were a few things I'd been after for a while now. 

I also bought some clothes and accessories from Primark but I never really feel like posting about those. I see this blog as a beauty blog so I rarely feel the need to talk about fashion but if you'd like to see the occasional clothing haul, let me know!

I popped into a different Topshop today and it stocked the entire make up line! I was pretty restrained and just picked up two cream blushes. I tried one of these when they first launched but I wasn't a huge fan of cream blushes. I'm still not a cream blush fanatic but the formula of these isn't sticky, which I appreciate.

I got the famous Neon Rose which is a bright coral shade and Head Over Heels which is a peachy shade. These were only £6 each for 4g of product. Bargains!

I popped into Boots because I had some coupons to use. I had £2 off any Revlon product so I picked up the UK exclusive Lip Butter shade, Macaroon. I already have all the lip butters I want (apart from Creamsicle which is only sold in the US!) so I've not been hunting them down but I did like the look of this shade. It's a deep pink shade. The full range of Lip Butters was well stocked in the St Enoch Centre Boots in Glasgow if any of you are from here and still looking for them. This was £7.99 but I only paid £5.99.

There is a 3 for 2 offer across most of the cosmetics brands so I picked up three new products from Rimmel. I've been debating whether or not to try the Wake Me Up foundation for a while because I was worried it would be too luminous for me. I swatched it and it felt really nice on the back of my hand so I decided to give it a go. This was £8.99. I also picked up the corresponding concealer which was £5.49. I got both in the shade Soft Beige. I picked up one of Rimmel's new lip stains in Nothing But Nude which is a peachy-pink shade. That was £5.99.

I've been using up my perfumes recently and I've only got Prada Candy left now. I love that scent but I don't want to use it every day. I decided to give the Soap & Glory Eau De Soap & Glory Original a try. This was £16.50 for 50ml which is very reasonable for an everyday scent. This will be great for just chucking in my bag. I got a free Foam Call body wash since I'd spent over £10.

So that's it for my little weekend haul! Let me know if you'd like to see reviews of any of these products once I've had the chance to try them out.

Stace xx

Saturday, 24 March 2012

FOTD: Easy Five Minute Make Up

I've been pretty lazy for the past week or so since I finished all my uni assignments and that laziness seems to have extended to make up. I don't know why since you'd think having more free time would mean I'd spend longer painting my face in the morning. I guess I'll get back into the swing of things as I start working on revision for my exams!

Here are some (pretty bad!) photos of the make up I wore on Friday. Please excuse my hair - the lazy theme extended to that also!

I started with a little bit of Clarins Beauty Flash Balm because my skin was looking a bit rubbish. On top of that I applied some NARS Sheer Glow foundation in the shade Santa Fe with my fingers. I used Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection concealer in Medium 3 under my eyes and on the scars on my chin. I then applied my NARS blush in Luster (which I've hit pan on! It's definitely love) with an angled blush brush.

I used a little bit of my Cosmetics A La Carte Brow Ink in Taupe along with MUA Clear mascara in my brows. After applying Too Faced Shadow Insurance on my lids, I used MAC Woodwinked all over my lid. I applied it with a flat eyeshadow brush and blended out the edges with a fluffy brush; ideally I'd have added a highlight on the brow bone but I didn't have one to hand. I love Woodwinked as an all over lid shade! I used the Lancome Hypnose Drama mascara sample from my most recent Glossybox. I should have a review of that up soon but if you want the short version; I like it. 

I'd already used my LUSH Pow Wow lip scrub and MAC Lip Conditioner so I just added a bit of my Revlon Lip Butter in Tutti Frutti. It's such a pretty orange-coral shade. I'd recommend picking it up if you can find it! 

What are your go-to products for lazy make up days?

Stace xx

NARS Blush Giveaway Winner

Hello everyone!

The NARS blush giveaway has ended and a winner has been chosen. The winner is...


She's decided she wants Orgasm so her prize will be on its way to her as soon as possible.

Thanks to everyone who took the time to enter and for letting me know the posts you'd like to see more of. I'm working on getting some of those up in the next couple of weeks.

Stace xx

My Top Five: NARS Wish List Products

I think I've become a bit of a NARS-aholic. It started with a blush, now I have six. And a foundation, and eyeshadows, and lipsticks...

Anyway! I always have my beady eye on some NARS products which aren't yet part of my collection so I thought I'd share the five which are at the top of my (rather long) list.

Larger Than Life lip gloss in Odalisque (£19)
The make up artist at my nearest NARS counter used this on me the last time I was in and it looked lovely. It's very pigmented for a gloss and it's not sticky at all. 

Blush in Madly (£21)
I've been thinking about picking up this shade for a while. I did also want Douceur but a lot of people have compared it with Tarte Exposed and said it's similar. I imagine this to look like a darker version of my beloved Luster. 

Lipstick in Casablanca (£17.50)
This darker orangey-peach shade is right up my street. I don't have a shade quite like this one so it's obviously a must-buy, right? I'm not the biggest fan of NARS lipstick packaging (it feels a bit cheap) so that's what's been putting me off buying this!

Pro-Prime Pore Refining Primer (£24)
I have quite large pores on my cheeks and my favourite primer for making them appear smaller is BeneFit's PoreFessional but this is only 50p more for almost a third more product so I'm interested in giving it a go.

Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base (£18)
I've been using Too Faced Shadow Insurance forever and I do like it but I feel like it's time to move on and try something new. I've heard lots of good things about this product and my Too Faced only has a teeny bit left so I think this will be my first wish list purchase out of necessity!

What's on your NARS wish list?

Stace xx

(all images from or

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Seche Vite Top Coat

I bought this around Christmas time because I could tell my Sally Hansen Insta-Dri was about to get too gloopy to use. I only paid around £6.50 for this on ASOS at the time as it was discounted. It's currently priced at £10.50 on the site (link) but I've spotted it for £7.75 on Beautybay (link). 

I wanted to wait a few months before reviewing this top coat because I remember reviewing the Insta Dri after a few weeks and then having to go back and change the review when it went gloopy so quickly. I've been using the Seche Vite since the new year and I am pleased with it. It does what I expect it to - dries my polish quickly and makes my manicure look super-shiny. I'm not sure if I'd say this prevents chipping but I didn't find the Sally Hansen to be particularly good for that either.

After almost three months I can happily report that this top coat is still usable. By this point with my Sally Hansen top coat, I'd probably be about to open a new bottle. 

Would I repurchase this over the Sally Hansen? 
Probably. I don't think I'd pay £10.50 for it but £7.75 seems pretty reasonable considering the Sally Hansen was £5.99.

What's your favourite top coat?

Stace xx

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

40% Off at The Body Shop & My Sale Picks!

The Body Shop are currently offering 40% off their entire site, including sale items. I've put myself on a bit of a spending ban so I won't be able to take advantage of the offer but I thought I'd share my top picks from their sale items in case any of you are planning an order. I usually stock up on shower gels and body butters from their sales but I've still got quite a few left from the last one!

Raspberry Ripple Bath & Shower Gel 250ml 
was £4, now £2, with discount £1.20
I've tried this before and it smells delicious! Boyfriend was also a fan.

Green Apple Bath & Shower Gel 250ml 
was £4, now £2, with discount £1.20
This is another favourite of mine. It smells like fresh apple so it's not overpoweringly sweet.

Brazil Nut Body Butter 200ml
was £12.50, now £5, with discount £3
It wouldn't be a Body Shop sale without some cheap body butters! This one is great if you have quite dry skin. The scent won't be for everyone, though.

Blueberry Body Butter 200ml
was £12.50, now £5, with discount £3
This one is nice if you're a fan of fruity scents. I've gone though about four of these in the past myself!

Raspberry Body Scrub 200ml
was £12.50, now £5, with discount £3
I don't think these scrubs are worth £12.50 but for £3 they're a total bargain! This Raspberry one goes really nicely with the Raspberry Ripple shower gel.

Now would also be a great time to stock up on my all time favourite face scrub - the Vitamin C Microdermabrasion (which I talk about here)

The Body Shop offer free delivery on all orders over £15.

Let me know if you pick anything up!

Stace xx

(all images from

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Garnier Skin Naturals Body Tonic Sugar Scrub

If you've been reading for the past few weeks you'll know I've been having some major issues with body scrubs lately. I tried one from Boots Botanics and another from Boots Extracts; both left me with horribly sticky skin and they left a ridiculous film on my bath (grr!)

I'd seen this Garnier scrub mentioned a few times in YouTube videos so I decided to give it a try in the hope that my luck with body scrubs would change. And it has.

This is an excellent body scrub for me. It smells great (very lemony!), it's not a pain to use and it leaves my skin feeling nicely exfoliated without leaving any sort of greasy film. The directions recommend that it should be used three times a week and I think that's about right. 

This is priced at £7.15 for 200ml (link) which is pretty pricey since I paid less than £6 for 450ml from Botanics. I like it enough that I would repurchase, though. I got this as part of a 3 for 2 offer which Boots usually have.

Stace xx

Saturday, 17 March 2012

MAC By Request

(image from their Facebook page)

I got an email about this collection a few days ago but I didn't think I'd be all that interested in any of the shades. I think if they'd included some of the really popular MSFs, I would have been more excited!

If you've not heard about this collection yet, MAC are basically offering their customers the chance to vote for three out of six lipstick, lipglass and eyeshadow shades we'd like to see repromoted. You can cast one vote per category per day.

I just decided to look up some swatches and there are a few products I have my eye on now so I voted for three very neutral shades; 3N lipstick, 2N lipglass and Heavenly Bliss eyeshadow. 

If I were to choose the three from each category I'd ideally like to see repromoted I'd go for 3N, Moxie and Rocker (not very summery but I don't like the other options!). From the selection of lipglasses I'd go for 2N, Cult of Cherry and Emancipation. From the eyeshadow category my favourites are Heavenly Bliss, Guacamole and Jete.

I'm not sure when this will launch in the UK but it will launch in the US in August so I'd expect to see it here in September/October hopefully.

Have you voted already? Which shades are you most excited about?

Stace xx

Friday, 16 March 2012

NARS Giveaway Reminder & Update


This post is a quick reminder to anyone who's not entered my 200 follower NARS blush giveaway yet - it ends on the 23rd of March. Click here to check out the post and enter.

Also, I've been going through the entries and putting them in a spreadsheet in order to choose the winner when the time comes and I've noticed that many entries do not follow all the rules. I want to give everyone a fair chance so I thought I'd flag it up now.

I have clearly stated in the initial post that in order to enter:

"You must follow this blog via Google Friend Connect and leave a comment letting me know which shade you'd like to win and what sorts of posts you'd like to see more of on this blog. Remember to leave a contact email address!"
A lot of you aren't telling me which sorts of posts you'd like to see. I know this might not seem like a big deal but I put that in the rules for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I'd like whoever wins to be someone who actually reads this blog and secondly, it's good for me to know which sorts of posts you all like. 
So if you want to go back and check your entry, please do. When it comes to choosing a winner, entries who have not met all the (very easy!) requirements, will be disqualified. I'm sorry if that sounds harsh but I think it's only fair. 

Good luck everyone!
Stace xx

17 Mirror Shine Lipstick in Beehive

I thought I had better write a blog post about this before I use it up completely! It's been one of my go-to lipsticks for the past couple of months. I'm sure you've all seen/heard of it before but if not, it's the 17 Mirror Shine lipstick in Beehive.

This is a bit of a cult product in the UK - I've seen it raved about on numerous blogs and in YouTube videos but I'd avoided buying it because I'd not had the best experience with 17 products before. If I'm totally honest, the garish blue packaging kind of put me off too. 

I picked up two other shades alongside this one which I also like but I think this shade is the most talked about because the colour is universally flattering. It's a light peachy pink shade which can be worn as a glossy hint of colour on the lips or applied more liberally to get a stronger colour pay off. I'd compare it to a Lustre finish from MAC but it feels more slippery than that. It's quite similar to some of the less pigmented Revlon Lip Butters. 

Whilst they're not drying, they're not moisturising either. They do wear off quite quickly so need to be reapplied often but that's not a deal breaker for me. 

I'd recommend this lipstick to anyone because I think it's a real crowd pleaser for people who are new to make up and those with large lipstick collections already. 

The Mirror Shine lipsticks are available from Boots and are priced at £4.59 (link)

Stace xx