Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Twas the night before Christmas...

Twinkle twinkle!

December has flown by and it's now Christmas Eve! I'm pleased to say all Christmas shopping is completed and presents are neatly adequately wrapped up underneath the tree. We've always had a real Christmas tree and I suppose we always will. When it comes to Christmas, my family has quite a lot of traditions; emptying our stockings on our parents bed before opening our presents, each of us taking a turn to stir the Christmas cake and of course a helluva lot of baking! I attempted red velvet cupcakes and they're gorgeous, mind you, I did cheat and use a cake mix this year. Do you have any Yuletide traditions?

I hope you have a lovely Christmas Eve and Christmas Day!

Monday, 23 December 2013

Vichy Dermablend Corrective Foundation - Reviewed

I'm sad to say at the age of twenty, I'm still searching for my Holy Grail foundation. One that offers great coverage, gives a dewy look without the oil and stays put all day - not too much to ask it is? I'd come to the end of my Max Factor Facefinity (which is good but the closest shade is too pink for me)  and my EL Doublewear samples were getting low so I trailed fellow blogs in search of a new one. One product that kept appearing was Vichy's Dermablend Corrective Foundation. Everyone was raving about it's longevity and amazing coverage, some blogs even said they noticed in improvement in their skin. I contacted the company myself and they informed me that they are completely against animal testing which I was really pleased about.

You won't find this foundation alongside the rest of the make-up, it's sneakily hidden away with the skin care. It's designed to cover minor to major skin concerns, from a few spots to rosacea. My skin has improved a lot over the past few years so my it isn't in need of serious coverage however I like to have a medium to full coverage with my foundation. What attracted me to this product was that it supposedly lasts 16 hours and gives great coverage without feeling like a mask. At £15.50, it's on the high end on the low end price wise so I thought I'd give it a shot. Oh by the way, I think it's important to point out for reference that I have combination skin which has been quite oily recently. This is how I got on with Dermablend...

The Good
I opted for the palest shade, Opal 15. I'll be honest, when I initially squeezed it out, it looked much too dark for my skin. However, once I applied it, the colour surprised me as suited my skin very well. As I mentioned, my previous foundation was a little pink and made me look redder than I am but this one is more yellow in colour and makes me look what I can only describe as healthy. I kept catching my reflection in the mirror and was stunned at the glow it has given me. I usually stipple my make-up on but with this, I've found it's better to apply it in gentle strokes and add a dusting of powder to set if your shinier.
It's quite thick in consistency which I actually prefer to a more liquid foundation. It is easier to sweep over your face and you don't have to work too quickly with it. It also means you don't need a lot to cover your entire face. It feel very hydrating on the skin and unlike others I've used, doesn't settle into the pores. It immediately looks flawless and the coverage is great, I didn't even need to use a concealer for my dark circles.
Now for the big one - does it last? Without the powder, it looked okay for about ten hours, but the shine showed through. After that, it began to shift around the oily area of my nose and cheeks - it still looked okay but not as immaculate as when it was first applied. I expected this, not even Doublewear provides me with flawlessly matt skin without a small dusting of powder. With powder it lasts all day and looks flawless, it's given me the best coverage and look than any other foundation I've tried. I also contacted them personally and found out that they are against animal testing which is great!

The Bad
As I mentioned, I first tried the foundation without any powder just to see how it fared with an oilier skin type solo. After a few hours, I noticed it let through a little more shine then I'd have liked. Although the coverage was still intact, there was a considerable amount of shine on my forehead and chin, and a little around the corners of my nose. Having said that, with a little bit of powder dusted on top, it looks great. If you have dry skin I can't see this being a huge issue but if you're in the oilier side, definitely use a powder to set it. By the way, I use Natural Collection Translucent powder in Cool. It's cheap but does the trick.
When applied, it does feel like I'm wearing something on my face; it's not especially heavy but it's definitely not the lightest foundation I've tried. It has a strong scent that's reminiscent of paint. It doesn't cause a huge issue, it's just during the application that you notice the smell. I noticed this with Doublewear foundation also, I figured it's because they are both quite thick and designed to last a while. I could see how this could put some people off but it doesn't bother me very much.
The packaging isn't really my cup of tea; it looks like a moisturiser or hand cream. I'm a sucker for pretty products and this isn't exactly going to look great on my dressing table. There also isn't a huge choice of skin tones, only five to choose from. I honestly can't see how they can go from pale white to black skin in just five colours, it just isn't going to work. I've been quite lucky with my match but I bet others have a really tough time finding a suitable shade.

The Bottom Line
After road-testing this product for about a month,  I must say I've found a new favourite foundation. It makes my skin look poreless and although I haven't noticed my skin improving, my skin hasn't been breaking out either. With a little powder, it looks great and makes me feel really confident. Plus they aren't against Animal Testing, which is what sold the last star it for me! Is it my HG foundation. Hmm... it is for now!


You can pick this up at Boots, just remember to look in the skincare aisle, you'll find it!

Also guys I wrote an article for Vanity Hype's online blog, all about Christmas Jumpers. Check it out here 

Thursday, 19 December 2013

I watched ... CARRIE

When I heard there was going to be a remake of classic horror movie Carrie, I was skeptical. I'm not a huge fan of remakes and when it was announced the lovely Chloe Grace Moretz was going to play the leading role, I couldn't see how it would work. Sissy Spacek had the weird loner thing down, Chloe is just too pretty. Carrie is one of my favourite books and I love the film so I hoped they wouldn't completely murder it (no pun intended). Warning, there may be spoilers!

Just to give you a brief idea of the storyline, Carrie White is a teenage girl who is bullied mercilessly at school and sheltered by her crazy puritan mother. Things change when Carrie is asked to prom by a popular boy and has an amazing time, until she is pushed too far and things get a little bit terrifying. The whole school discovers that there's more to Carrie than meets the eye.

The Good
The 2013 film is directed by Kimberly Peirce. What I thought was cool about the film is that it's not just a remake, it's a modern version of the classic. I didn't realise until one of the girls whipped out a camera phone during the infamous shower scene. It definitely made it a bit different to the original, while still sticking to the story. 
As I mentioned, I wasn't sure how Chloe could make a convincing Carrie however she totally pulled it off. In fact, although Sissy was incredibly creepy looking in original, I might dare to say that Chloe's interpretation in was a little more relatable for today's teenage girl, which has surprised me. The reason was because she was more real - an outcast but not so weird that you couldn't put yourself her shoes. There's a scene where she is crying in the locker room that I really could imagined how she felt and I never really got that with Sissy. Lots of reviews online disagree with me on this, but that's just my opinion.
I don't want to give too much away, but the death of lets just say two really horrid characters is a lot better than the original. I mean a lot better, I was always slightly annoyed by how rushed this particular death was in the 1976 version, it felt like it should be a bit more epic. In this, I feel they really got what they deserved. 

The Bad
Honestly, I think they did a pretty good job with this one. The one thing that did annoy me was the ending. It's not really a big deal, but I was really bracing myself for the famous hand out of the grave grab ... but it never happened. Slightly disappointing. 
This is going to sound very vague, but in the very end of the film there is an important death scene which I always thought was executed brilliantly in the 1976 film. However, it didn't have the same shock factor or painful irony in my opinion, it's a shame as all the other deaths throughout the film were pretty great. I do feel they fell at the last hurdle there. 
Not that Carrie was ever the scariest movie, but in my opinion, Sissy definetly trumps Chloe in the freaky scale. The transformation from a sweet girl to a monster is so much more abrupt in the original which is great, who could forget that famous terrifying silent scream face? Chloe, bless her, just isn't that scary. Don't go see this if you're expecting a conventional horror filled with fright, it isn't. It's more of a disturbing revenge flick.

The Bottom Line
Despite going in with doubts, I really enjoyed this remake. It made the story it's own and Chloe did a fantastic job in my opinion. It's not scary but it's literally the perfect film if you're getting picked on at school, it's the ultimate bullying victim's revenge. If you love the original film and book don't fear, chances are you'll be a fan of this version too. I highly recommend it.


Sunday, 15 December 2013

Indie Brand ... Miss Sunshine

I was lucky enough to be given a press pass for the Clothes Show Live this year and discovered some really cool independent brands; one of which being Miss Sunshine. I actually bought two shirts from them, the other I'm sure you will see soon enough. I just love the painting on this, it reminded me of my favourite childhood toy! Unfortunately, you can't buy these unique shirts online at the moment but if you live in the London area, the stall is set up in Camden Lock Market. The guys are really cool too so be sure to check them out. 

Shirt - Miss Sunshine ♦ Jeans - River Island ♦ Shoes - Primark ♦ Necklace - Boohoo ♦ Bracelet - a gift

As you can see, I've really been embracing the casual heel since my last OOTD post. I picked up these little beauties for £12 and they are perfect for a short girl. They are flatforms so are easy to walk in, to give you some idea, I wore these all day at the Clothes Show and had no pain at all. And those who have been before will know the day brings with it a lot walking.

Two little piece of news, I've been writing articles for Vanity Hype's website so please check out my first one here, all about tacky-but-awesome Christmas jumpers! Also, I'm hoping to get a little video from the Clothes Show up soon, I'll try to get it up ASAP. It all depends on how my editing skills play out!

Be sure to check out Miss Sunshine if you are around Camden Lock Market 

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Christmas Shopping

I have no idea what this robot was trying to advertise. He just wandered about the town making odd noises.
Jumper - Boohoo ♦ Shorts - eBay ♦ Shoes - Topshop ♦ Headband - Claires ♦ Necklace - Narzipan 

I visited Stafford today to get as much shopping out of the way as I could; I'm ashamed to say I hadn't bought one present. In my defence, for the past few weeks I've been trying to get all my assignments done and I honestly Christmas presents were pretty low on my list of priorities. There was a lovely Christmas market in the square with all sorts of handmade and creative gifts. It was a pretty productive day as practically all my presents are sorted, just a few little bits and bobs to pick up now. Phew! 

How have you guys been getting on with Christmas shopping

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Philosophy Mini Miracles - Reviewed

I visited London recently for my friend's 21st birthday. We were taking the obligatory stroll down Oxford Street when we were approached by a friendly woman who offered us free Philosophy goodie bags. I'd never heard of this brand before so I was intrigued. I received three products in total.

 Purity 3 in 1
It's quite a runny consistency, but as you massage it into your face it gets a thicker creamier texture. In all honestly, I wasn't crazy about this to begin with, it felt a little heavy, it kind of felt like I was rubbing Vaseline onto my skin. However it rinsed off easily and left my skin feel rather refreshed. 
The next day my recent breakout looked much flatter and calmer. I don't know whether this was a coincidence, my skin has random off and on day so I will have to test this further to see if it really does help. Overall, I'm pretty impressed with this product; I'll definitely finish up my sample and if it continues to do good for me I may consider purchasing the full size bottle.

Exfoliating wash
Again, this product is surprising runny, rare for an exfoliator but I really like the consistency. The micro beads are very fine and it feels really light when you massage the wash into your skin, quite relaxing really. I'm not crazy about the scent - it's very faint and I can't quite put my finger on what it smells like. I feel it's a scent that would appeal to older women but I wouldn't say it was particularly nice. However, I guess it's good that it's not heavily perfumed like most skincare products.
It made my skin feel incredibly soft which makes me feel like it's actually doing it's job of buffing away old skin. I think so far I'd rate this exfoliating wash over my current regular Soap & Glory's Scrub Your Nose In It, which I find to be a bit harsh.

Amazing Grace perfume
The goodie bag contained a small sample of Philosophy's new perfume Amazing Grace. The bottle for the actual product is very simple and understated. They call it a 'clean floral scent' and I would say this is a pretty accurate description. It's very feminine but not girly; it feels sophisticated and is definitely more of a day perfume than night. 
Amazing Grace is pretty scent but again I feel like it's for the more mature lady. It's a little musky for my taste and I associate that with the older demographic. It sort of reminds me of laundry detergent; it's a little soapy smelling, which reminds me of my Grandma who'd probably love it. If you're a fan of grown-up musky smells then don't let this discourage you. Perfume tastes are very personal and I'm afraid this one didn't really do it for me. It is pleasant enough but just not for me.

Overall my favourite product was the exfoliating wash - it felt gentler and less harsh than others I've tried. As for the others, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by what I've seen from the cleanser. My skin doesn't often agree with them but so far it seems to be doing it some good, or at the very least, not causing further breakouts. Although I'm not a fan of powdery perfumes, I think girls who are would like this floral scent and it would make a good present for mothers and grandmothers.

Have you tried any products from Philosophy?
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