Friday, 28 February 2014

MAC Dark Side Lipstick Review

Dark Side is possibly my favourite MAC lipstick thus far. I love it. I picked it up whilst schmoozing the MAC counter on a whim one day and fancied a treat. I couldn't have chosen a better colour, as it's exactly what I've been looking for. 
Dark Side is a deep burgundy red with some subtle purple undertones and I think it is a shade many of us can work. It twists the classic red into the grunge and does so with ease. My favourite way to wear this shade is with thick black winged liner on the eyes teamed with a flawless finish on the skin, just add a leather jacket and you're smokin'. Of course not everyone wants to rock that look on the way to the food shop for example, but you can work it pretty much any way you want from edgy grunge to vampy to smart and sophisticated. It's wearable as a statement lipstick or a subtle stain, either way don't be put off by the intensity of the colour because it's a shade that I feel everyone looks good in. 
As for where this belongs on the MAC lipstick spectrum, it is from the Amplified collection (yet again) and certainly lives up to the expectations of this range. It is extremely pigmented, very creamy and not drying and stays on for ages. In my opinion you seriously can't knock an Amplified lipstick and they are definitely the best in terms of formula. 

MAC Dark Side Lipstick - £15 @ MAC 
I'm in love with this lipstick! What is your favourite statement shade? 

Han X

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Daisy & Flowerbomb Purse Refill Set Review

I’ve got a bit of a thing for these perfume miniatures at the moment, I mean we all love having the 100ml sitting on our shelf but when a girls on a budget you need something to soften the blow and that’s where these come in.  It all started with my Mum purchasing Daisy Eau so Fresh for me as a Christmas gift and I then went on to buy Flowerbomb in NYC. I knew I loved my little Marc Jacobs handbag companion so not being able to afford the full size (damn you Sephora), I opted for the baby counterpart.

Many of us are familiar with Jacobs’ signature and extremely recognisable scent Daisy. I’ve gone through a few bottles over the years and I still love it no less. It’s an extremely wearable scent for both daytime and evening, it’s just that versatile! It has a light, fresh, airy scent that doesn’t feel overpowering or heavy, you’ll receive many a compliment wearing this! As for the refill purse edition I have, I am extremely happy with it. The bottle is pretty much a miniature version of the big 100ml bottles, complete with pink rubber flower on the lid. I love the fact that this is a spray dispenser bottle as it makes everything just that little bit easier. For your money you get 20ml already in the iconic Marc Jacobs bottle and then another 15ml in a glass tube ready for a refill. The refilling process is very easy, just use the funnel provided, unscrew the spray dispenser and pour away.

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb is one I have been after for so long and I have finally got my hands on a teeny portion of this beautiful scent. As the name suggests this is nothing less than a whole load of floral notes. It has a very girly and very sweet scent that I think some may find a little too overpowering, however it isn’t sickly which I can sometimes find with this kind of perfume. As for how I have taken to my refill kit I would say it’s pretty so-so. It comes with the iconic multi-faceted bottle, but it’s tiny (7ml) and is without the spray dispenser, it’s the whole pour and dab kind of thing. I’ve also had a ‘mare trying to refill it, you get the handy funnel to assist you with this but it’s just all a bit of a faff. The product just sits inside the funnel once you’ve poured it and refuses to go down. My thinking is that because this bottle is so small, placing the funnel inside the lid makes it air tight and there’s no room for manoeuvre. Instead the perfume ends up seeping out of the lid and you end up wasting product trying to get into the darn bottle, not the best. I can’t knock the perfume itself, I love it, but I think V&F need to take some tips from Mr Jacobs concerning the whole travel duo thang.

Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh Eau de Toilette Purse Spray and Refill  - £25.05 @
Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Travel Duo - $35 @ (doesn't seem to be available in the UK)

Have you had any refillables before? Anyone ever tried rollerball versions?

Han X

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Cult Favourites | NARS Laguna Bronzer & Super Orgasm Blush

Every brand has those stand out products that you just have to have for the sake of the cult. For NARS it’s their Laguna bronzer and Orgasm/Super Orgasm blushes; they don’t have a review on every blog ever for nothing. Choosing whether to leave out such highly talked about products from your blog or to add your opinion to the masses is a tough decision.  I don’t want to bore people with the same old story I’ve seen myself hundreds of times. But I know these products are good and because of that I want in too.

What I’m getting at is that no one needs me to do the whole shabang on these two products. Instead I’m combining them together and giving you a brief low down on why I love them and why I use them religiously.

NARS Laguna Bronzer:

I’ve been using this for around six months now and I’ve been entirely satisfied the whole time. Looking at the product in the pan, Laguna appears dark, a tad shimmery and I’ll admit, a little bit daunting. On the skin however it transfers into a gorgeous golden hue and there isn’t an orange undertone in sight. It warms up the skin when dusted on in all the right places and also makes for the perfect contouring companion. It doesn’t look muddy or dirty, but blends easily and effortlessly, creating that sought after definition. This is helped by the fact that it is a very pigmented bronzer and you don’t need that much product to achieve the look you’re after. It’s a pricey number at £26 but it is one I would seriously consider investing in if you haven’t already. I use mine every single day and feel I have definitely got my money’s worth, and I’ve barely made a dent in it!

NARS Super Orgasm Blush:

Nars have numerous cult status blushes, Super Orgasm just being one of about five. I would describe this as being a very girly, frosted baby pink with peachy undertones, however if you don’t like glitter then this probably isn’t for you. Super Orgasm has very large glitter particles and an incorporated shimmer that are very visible in the pan. On the skin however the glitter aspect of the product doesn’t transfer as you might expect, most of the particles come away from the brush as excess or don’t stick onto the face at all. For some this will be a disappointment but for others a relief, I find it to work well just as it is, I don’t find it to be too much or too little, it just epitomises what makeup should be – pink, girly and fun. The lasting power is about 4-5 hours, not revolutionary by any means but I think it can depend on how much you apply initially, I tend to try not to be too heavy handed and just add more throughout the day.

NARS Laguna Bronzer - £27 @ Selfridges

NARS Super Orgasm - £22.50 @ Selfridges

So there we have it, NARS are a firm favourite with every beauty lover and I’m no different, what are your favourite NARS products?  

Han X

Thursday, 20 February 2014

My New York City Purchases

First off I should acknowledge the fact that I've been away from my blog a little longer than anticipated. Sometimes life just throws you curveballs and all you can do is try to handle them, which also meant that I didn't feel at all like blogging. But I would also like to say thanks for the 20+ Bloglovin' followers I gained while I was absent, it was a nice surprise!

Anyway I'm back, and I'm back from the big apple which was absolutely amazing. It's definitely one of my favourite places, especially in the snow. My last post was a NYC wishlist, which I actually managed to stick to (roughly...). Unfortunately I was on a bit of a budget as I didn't have a great deal of time to save up spending money (we booked it pretty last minute!). Nevertheless I still managed to spend a good few hours in Sephora and MAC, swatching, testing and oozing over everything, so here's what I bought...

1. MAC Lipsticks

I actually only bought two lipsticks whilst I was away, Crème In Your Coffee and Plumful. These were both on my wishlist and I just had to have them. I wasn't too bothered about my other choices so I just bought the ones I had been eyeing up for ages. No regrets, they are both gorgeous and I haven't stopped wearing them since!

2. MAC Eyeshadows

I bought Cranberry, Naked Lunch, Sketch, Espresso and Rice Paper. The latter made an appearance because the lovely lady at MAC told me that it's great used as a highlight paired with Espresso on the brows. They only work out at around £7 in the US, a bargain in comparison to our UK prices. I only wish I could have bought more!

3. MAC Palettes

I went a little palette crazy. I already have the 15 insert palette which I bought a few months ago, but they are so much cheaper stateside that I just had to buy them all. I purchased the duo for my brow shadows, the quad for when travelling, the 6 insert blush palette and the 30 insert eyeshadow palette. I need to sort out what is being used for what, and I'll probably give one away but for less than £35 for them all, I would be mad not too!


4. MAC 208 Brush

I only have two MAC brushes currently, both 217’s of which I love but there are definitely more I want to add to my collection. I went for this one because I don’t actually have any brow brushes and felt it was time to invest, especially with all my eyebrow related purchases!


5. Makeup Forever HD Foundation

Finally got my hands on this! So unfair that some brands are only available overseas! At the moment I'm still in the process of working out my opinion on this one, but so far it's good.


6. Hourglass Arch Brow Shaping Pencil

I literally only bought this because I saw a comment by Viviannadoesmakeup stating she loved it. I think she's got great judgment and she hasn't let me down here, it's so easy to use it's quite ridiculous. The shade is perfect for me and I love its simplicity.


7. Anastasia Dipbrow Pomade

As you can see I am a little obsessed with the whole brow thing. This had me a little daunted at first, I've always used a pencil before now, but with continued practise it becomes less scary and you begin to work out your knack for painted on brows. I have to give myself a good ten minutes to get this right however so this only comes out when I have the time!


8. Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb

I really wanted the full size version but it's just so expensive. Instead I settled for the little baby version which is so cute, it would make a lovely gift. I think it’s a gorgeous scent and apparently Zara do their own version! Let me know if you’ve tried it!


So there goes, I’m happy with my purchases and have fallen in love with some of them. More detailed reviews on my favourites shall be up within the month which I can’t wait to share. Not sure whether to write a post on what I got up to in New York over the 5 days, what do you think?

Han X

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

My NYC Shopping List

So I go to New York in the morning! Totally excited, so I thought I'd compile a list of NYC treats I'm after. The list isn't excessive, it's just some of the things I know I'll definitely be picking up and so it'd be rude not to share them with you! 

1. My first stop is undoubtedly going to be MAC. The Times Square store is hectic but it's worth the hustle and bustle. I've got my eyes on several lipsticks, first being Creme In Your Coffee (which I've wanted for ages) alongside MAC Red, Plumful and Morange. Knowing me I'll probably ditch the list and choose different ones completely but at least I've got something to work with amongst the mayhem!

2. I also want some eyeshadow refills for my MAC palette (it'll make an appearance on here sooner or later!). So far I'm after Cranberry, Sketch, Espresso and Naked Lunch.

3. One of the benefits of visiting the US is that us Brits get to take advantage of the stateside brands we don't get over here. I'll be looking for the Makeup Forever HD Foundation which I actually can't wait to try and I'll be checking out the Marc Jacobs Genius Gel Foundation, yey!

4. I've also be lusting after the Anastastia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade which recently hit Another benefit of the US is that their prices tend to be cheaper so I'll be grabbing this for a fraction of our price! 

5. Lastly are the MAC palettes. They are ridiculously cheap over there, $10 for both the single palette and the double. And the inserts for these are just a mere $2! MAC UK are definitely ripping us off with the amount they charge! So imma be stocking up on these for myself and all my pals haha! 

So there we have it, no doubt I'll come home with a whole different array of stuff but having some idea of what I want means I can't go too over budget *ahem*. 

What else do you think I should check out whilst in New York? Both shopping and sightseeing suggestions welcome!

Han X

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Soap & Glory Archery Brow Pencil Review

I definitely feel that the Soap & Glory make up range doesn’t get as much praise as it deserves. They have some smash products and I’m about to get all in your face with their Archery Brow Pencil. I’ve been using this for around three months now and I’ve been so happy with it. This pencil only comes in two shades, ‘Brownie Points’ which I shall be reviewing today, and ‘Love is Blonde’ but I wouldn’t let the limited shade range put you off. 'Brownie Points' is a medium brown, but I would say that it’s versatile enough to work with a number of different hair colours and skin tones, especially since my hair is quite dark and I have quite fair skin. That aside, what I find to be the beauty of this product is that it allows for a defined and precise application but at the same time delivers a very natural looking brow. The colour isn’t too brash and it doesn’t allow for a harsh application, no scouse brows here! As for me, I tend to get more use out of the brow pencil, as I like how quickly it can be applied and how long lasting the formula is. Speaking of which, it is very waxy and can be hard to work with at first. I think this is the reason many people opt for the brow tint applicator instead, but if you gradually build it up (without tugging the pencil at your skin!) then it makes for a great long lasting brow.

The tint aspect of this product is what I use when I have more time to perfect my brows, as I think the finish you get from this is brilliant. It does deliver that brow tint effect, but it doesn’t look unnatural. You can use it for a fuller brow look or to merely fill in sparse areas, building up the colour as you wish. This too is very long lasting and I’ve got a whole day and night from it before now!
Unfortunately I’m on my very last nub of pencil and my tint is beginning to dry up so I will definitely be repurchasing. The only downside there is to this product is that there isn’t that much product for your £10, and I’ve heard that the tint has dried up in less than two weeks for some people! But as for the product itself, S&G have impressed me yet again. 
Archery Brow Tint & Precision Shaping Pencil - £10 @ Boots
What’s your favourite Soap & Glory product?

Han X