Thursday, 28 November 2013

OOTD: Leathered


Top: River Island (No longer in stock but a similar one here)
Necklace: Miss Selfridge
Trousers: ASOS (Similar here
Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell (here)

I've been after a pair of leather trousers for a while now, and had this gorgeous pair 'saved for later' on ASOS for a few weeks. As soon as payday came along I bit the bullet and got them. They're so versatile; they can be dressed down with casual tees during the day, or dressed up with heels and a nice top for the evening. I've gone in-between evening and day, with a fairly low-key top: white but with a pretty, raised pattern on it from River Island, but not-so-low-key shoes. As regular readers of my blog will know, I'm rather in love with Jeffrey Campbell Litas! This beige pair adds a great contrast to the monochrome outfit, and makes the high heel and platform a bit more understated. My love for them is a result of how good they look, how comfy they are and how tall they make me (I'm really only 5 ft 2"!!).

What do you think of my outfit? Is anyone else loving leather trousers or Jeffrey Campbell boots?

Rosy x

Monday, 25 November 2013

Current Skincare Faves


I am a real skincare junkie. Don't get me wrong, I love makeup, but skincare is my biggest interest- and weakness in terms of my spending power! I spend more time reading and researching skincare than any makeup product. I believe having good skin makes such a huge difference to a person's overall appearance, and am always on the lookout for products that will help me achieve clear, blemish-free and hydrated skin.

My skin is oily/ combination and I often suffer from breakouts. These are some of the products that I think are great at doing their job....

Clarins Brightening Mask*
This mask is simply wonderful. It's very convenient as you only need to apply it and wait 1- 2 minutes before washing it off- brilliant for lazy people like myself or for when you're in a rush. I often put it on just before going in the shower. It makes my skin look radiant and clear, getting rid of all blackheads. It's gentle and very cleansing, and is suitable for all skin types. I use it approximately 2-3 times a week and can really notice a difference in how clear my skin is looking since.

Estee Lauder Perfectly Clear Cleanser
I use this in the morning and it really wakes me up. It's refreshing and cleanses my face very well but does not make it tight or dry. I also use it as my second cleanser in the evening- I always double cleanse in the evening; the first cleanser I use is a oil-based one (the Shu Uemura one is my favourite) to remove all my makeup and then the second one is this Estee Lauder one which cleans my bare skin. I have found that double cleansing has been a very effective way of keeping my skin clear and reducing blemishes.

Witch Hazel Stick
I apply this to any new spots/ yellow heads. It works well to dry them out and is very purse friendly. It's also brilliant for any insect bites that you get in the summer- clears them up and stops them itching better than anything else I've ever tried.

Eve Lom Dynaspot
I apply this on any red spots/ blemishes before I go to bed at night. In the morning the spot has reduced in size and the redness is significantly diminished. It's quite pricey but it really does calm the angry redness like no other product I've tried.

Clarins Pore Minimizing Serum*
This is applied before your moisturiser on the areas where you want to tighten your pores and make the skin smoother. It's lightweight and smells very fresh and almost herbally. It works to tighten, purify and minimise pores. I use it mainly to provide a matte texture to my skin and to minimise the shine, keeping the oil at bay throughout the day. A great product for anyone with oily/ combination skin or if you have large pores.

Estee Lauder Oil Free Daywear Moisturiser
I love this moisturiser. The cucumber scent is so refreshing and it makes my skin feel very moisturised and soft. As I have fairly oily skin I use the oil-free version, but there is also a normal version available. My Mum, Dad and sister all swear by this moisturiser and it's one of those products I know I will be using forever.

REN Clearcalm 3 Replenishing Night Serum
This serum is brilliant. I've never tried any REN products before but I've heard great things about them, and I love how all the ingredients are natural. Their products are very gentle on the skin but very effective. This night serum is supposed to help clear the skin of blemishes overnight while simultaneously hydrating the skin. Sounds too good to be true right? WRONG! It's amazing! I apply it every night after cleansing and toning, in place of a night moisturiser. My skin looks much clearer, less red and very soft. I would definitely recommend this to anyone that suffers from breakouts, even people with sensitive skin.

A Quick Word About Toner....
You may have noticed that there is no toner included here. I am on the look out for two toners; one to hydrate and one to exfoliate. After reading Caroline Hiron's amazing skincare blog I can now appreciate the necessity for these two types of toner. The exfoliating toner acts to remove all dead skin cells and unclog pores, and the hyrdrating toner is then spritzed on afterwards to hyrdrate the skin and help seal in moisturiser. For the exfoliating toner I am torn between the REN Clarifying Toner and the Clarins Brightening Exfoliating Toner. Both sounds amazing and I'm definitely going to be buying one- has anyone tried any of these? What are your thoughts? As for the hydrating toner, I am unsure as to which one to get. I am tempted by Jurlique mists and Clarins toners- does anyone have any recommendations? As I said, my skin is oily/ combination.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on these skincare items, and any other skincare recommendations you've got!

Rosy x

Friday, 22 November 2013

Helen E Cosmetics Lipstick In Caribbean


I decided to channel a bit of a 50s vibe this day, by having wavy short hair and wearing a red lippy. I'm still a relative newbie when it comes to wearing red lipsticks and so I've not been brave enough to go too bright or dramatic yet. This Helen E Cosmetics one in Caribbean is the perfect shade for a scaredy-cat like me, as it's bold enough to make a statement but soft enough to not be too shocking. It's a lovely red colour but still looks relatively natural when worn. The lipstick isn't drying at all and it goes on very smoothly, making my lips look quite plump and moisturised in the process. All in all, I'm pretty impressed with lipstick and will definitely be using it regularly from now on.

Has anyone else tried any makeup by Helen E Cosmetics? What did you think?

Price: £10 Available to buy here.


Tuesday, 19 November 2013

OOTD: Urban Prep


Shirt: Aubin and Wills (similar here)
Faux leather Crop Top: Missguided (similar here)
Necklace: Primark
Disco Pants: American Apparel
Shoes: Rocket Dog*

I LOVE these shoes from Rocket Dog! I've worn them every day since I received them. They go with any outfit, whether it be girly dresses to make them look a bit edgey, or with leggings like the outfit I'm wearing here. They are so comfy it's untrue! And very practical. I must admit I fall in love with shoes a lot in the shop and then when I get them home I realise how impractical they are for the glorious Manchester rain. These faux leather high-tops are perfect for braving the winter months with, however, and I'm so pleased with myself for finding a pair that are stylish and sensible at the same time- win win!!

I've teamed my new trainers with one of my wardrobe staples: my American Apparel Disco Pants. I wear these all the time as they are super flattering and very comfy. Although they are on the pricey side, you really do pay for the quality and for the shape to last. I teamed them with my faux leather crop top from Missguided and added a pop of colour and fashion with this preppy shirt from Aubin and Wills. Lastly, I threw on a chunky necklace to break up the black- Primark does a great selection of cheap but very fashionable jewellery so I'd recommend a visit if you're looking for something like this one.

What do you think of my outfit?

Rosy x

Monday, 18 November 2013

Makeup On In 5 Minutes and Out The Door!


I seem to live my life in a constant rush. Dashing around in the morning, I always seem to be running late. So, as I'm often doing my makeup in a frantic race against the clock, I thought I'd show you what products I use and how I use them. This whole makeup application takes approximately 5 minutes!

Step One: Prep
I quickly spread primer all over my face (using my fingers) in order to ensure that whatever makeup I do manage to put on, it will at least stay in place all day. I really like Benefit's POREfessional as it's mattifying (I have oily/combination skin) and it definitely makes sure that my makeup stays on and my face isn't too shiny.

Step Two: Base
I then sweep powder all over my face, and a bit on my neck to ensure that it is all blended well. If I'm in a mega rush I will use the pad that comes with the powder to apply it. If I have a little bit of time I will use a powder brush as this provides a more natural finish. The powder that I'm using and loving right now is MAC's Studio Fix Powder (full review here). It provides a full coverage that seems to be almost invisible on the skin and really softens it.

Step Three: Colour
I then sweep bronzer lightly all over my face and neck to add a healthy tan, but concentrate most on the area underneath my cheek bones for contouring. Nars Laguna Bronzer is my favourite bronzer as it provides a very natural finish and stays on all day without making me look orange.

I then put a little dab of blusher on to the balls of my cheeks and lightly sweep it out towards my temples. This Lancôme Blush Subtil (shade 08 Brun Roche) is very natural and so great to use when I'm in a rush as no blending is required. Finally, I add a touch of highlighter above the balls of my cheeks and down the centre of my nose. The Bobbi Brown Shimmer Bricks are brilliant for this purpose, adding a light shimmer to enhance the features on your face.

Step Four: Eyes and Brows
I then put eyeliner on the bottom of my lids and across the top (along my eyelashes and slightly above them), using a kohl eyeliner for speed and the fact that it's easier to blend. It's much easier to rectify a mistake with a kohl than a liquid eyeliner if you're in a rush as well. I often use the No 7 Stay Perfect Amazing Eyes Pencil during the day as it looks really natural and never smudges.

I then add a few coats of mascara to both my top and bottom lashes. The Estee Lauder Sumptuous Extreme Mascara is a lovely one to use as it provides great volume and curl. Finally, I fill in any gaps in my eyebrows with a brow pencil- the Benefit Instant Brow Pencil was created for girls in a rush like me! And then brush over an eyebrow setting gel to keep them in place all day. This one from Illamasqua is my favourite as it sets them all day but doesn't leave any residue. If I'm in a HUGE rush then I just sweep over the brow gel without using the pencil, or leave my brows altogether.

Step Five: Out The Door!
I usually add a touch of lipstick or lipgloss while I'm on the go as there's always one in my handbag for these occasions. The Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfectors (full review here) are perfect for applying on the go as they're very moisturising and add a subtle pop of colour,

What makeup do you quickly put on when you're in a rush? What could you not leave the house without putting on? I think powder and eyeliner are my two biggest essentials!

Rosy x

Sunday, 17 November 2013

OOTN: Cocktail Tasting and a Zara Launch Party


Playsuit: ASOS (here)
Waist Belt: American Apparel
Blazer: Max Studio
Shoes: Topshop (here)

As soon as I saw this gorgeous playsuit on ASOS I knew it was going to be mine. I fell in love with the vibrant colour and pretty print instantly. When it arrived I was not disappointed. The long sleeves make this playsuit a bit different, I think they make it look better, and also more practical for winter. I added my American Apparel suede waist belt to make it look even more flattering by pulling my waist in. It was the perfect outfit to wear to a night consisting of two great bloggers' events that I went to last week: Cocktail Tasting at TGI Fridays and the Zara Launch Party for their new Manchester store. 

I attended both events with one of my best friends and top blogger, Victoria from In The Frow. TGI Fridays were celebrating 100 years of cocktail making and the introduction of some lovely new cocktails to their menu. Having never been in the TGI Fridays in Manchester before I was very impressed. It was very modern and smart but had a fun, relaxed atmosphere. The cocktails on offer were all incredibly yummy- my favourite was their new Popping Candy Strawberry Margarita. The bar men were very skilled and could make any cocktail requested- including ones that we made up such as a Queen Rosy, featuring vanilla ice cream, champagne and strawberries! We were also treated to some nibbles, all of which were scrumptious, it has definitely made me want to go for a meal and cocktails there in the near future. 

After being very full of delicious cocktails and food we made our way over to Zara. As any Manchester girl will know, Zara has been closed for months due to refurbishments and so I was very excited to finally be visiting one of my favourite stores again and seeing the improvements made. It now looks very impressive. Super modern with big plasma screens on the walls, and very slick black and white decor. To be honest it looked like a high-end designer store- very impressive. As we wondered around the store (which is now four floors- kids on the basement, women on ground and the first floor, and men on the second floor), carrying armfuls of clothes and champagne, we were in our element. I bought a gorgeous dress and jumper but I could have bought a lot more! 


Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Empties


This months empties is a little later than planned due to the fact that my internet has been down for the last few days (I swear I will never take the internet for granted again- you don't realise how much you miss it and use it until it's gone!).

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil
This cleansing oil is a miracle in a bottle. It is definitely a Holy Grail product for me, I couldn't live without it now. You simply rub three squirts into your dry, makeup-full face and then splash water all over it, rinsing your face as normal. It takes less than a minute to remove all your makeup (even tough mascara)- amazing!
Repurchase? YES.

Estee Lauder Perfectly Clear Cleanser for Normal Skin
I've been using this cleanser on and off for years. Whenever I stop using it and go back to it I always wonder why I ever stopped! It makes my face feel lovely and clean without feeling too tight or dry. It's gentle on my skin but effective at removing all the grime that's on it- I've certainly noticed that my skin looks much calmer and that my spots are much less red and big. Lastly, this cleanser smells lovely- really fresh and flowery. I would definitely recommend it as it lasts a very long time.
Repurchase? YES.

Armani Maestro Foundation
This foundation is like no other foundation I have ever tried. It took me weeks, if not months, to make up my mind about it. It is very lightweight and provides a VERY natural, barely-there finish when applied. However, after it has sunk in and dried (and the oils in it have evaporated and the technology used in it kicked in effect) then it does provide a more light-medium coverage. I like how natural it is, however I think it is probably better for spring/ summer and I will therefore probably be investing in a slightly heavier foundation for winter.
 Repurchase? Maybe.

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion
This is another Holy Grail product for me. I never wear eyeshadow without it underneath now. It keeps my eyeshadow in place all day/night without smudging or losing any of its colour/vibrance. It stops the eyeshadow from creasing too.
Repurchase? YES.

No 7 Brown Eyeliner
I've been using the No 7 eyeliners for years and years now. The brown one is a great colour for during the day. It's subtle and natural looking but has a big enough impact to make you look good.
Repurchase? YES.

Urban Decay Brow Setting Gel
This product worked very well but the design of the brush head made it so that it ended up being quite messy to apply. I much prefer the Illamasqua one.
Repurchase? Probably not. 

Benefit Instant Brow Pencil
This is great for days where you're in a bit of a rush and just want to quickly fill in the gaps in your eyebrows in order to create a more defined and better frame for your overall face and makeup. The colour is natural and it provides a subtle finish when used to fill in the gaps- providing you don't apply it to the very ends of your eyebrows.
Repurchase? YES.

What do you think about these products? 


Tuesday, 12 November 2013

OOTD: Quilted Velvet and Wine


Top: Topshop
Necklace: Miss Selfridge
Leggings: Missbehaver (Similar here
Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell

Velvet is one of my favourite fabrics to wear during the winter. It makes plain leggings, dresses or skirts look much more interesting and I love the texture of it. This deep wine colour is also very wintery and makes a great statement with minimal effort. The quilted top from Topshop goes with everything and is the perfect alternative to the plain white tee. It's quite thick so is warm enough to be worn with a cardy. The Jeffrey Campbell Suede Lita Boots need no introduction. They are simply fabulous and I'm wearing them all the time at the moment- believe it or not they're actually quite comfy!

What do you think of my outfit? Is anyone else loving velvet at the moment?


Thursday, 7 November 2013

Illamasqua Brow and Lash Gel


My eyebrows do tend to have a mind of their own. They seem to go walk-about at the ends and definitely require a brow gel to tame them and keep them in place all day. Baring this in mind, I have tried and tested various different eyebrow gels over the years, but none that matches up to the Illamasqua one.

I love the brush head. It glides on to my eyebrows easily and is not too big so does not go all over my brow bone like others can do. The gel sets my eyebrows in place all day so that they are firm and do not move. It does not leave any residue or white bits like other brow gels can do- this is my biggest criticism of all the others that I've tried.

Overall, this is the best brow gel that I have tried to date, I would highly recommend it. It works perfectly and does exactly what you want it to do. It is also a great price as it lasts ages. This is my first makeup product from Illamasqua, a brand that I am really starting to love. I have adored their nail varnishes for a while now and their makeup seems just as good quality, dramatic and unique.

Price: £11.50 Available to buy at Selfridges


Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Bobbi Brown Lip Gloss in Spun Gold

  

If I was to describe this Bobbi Brown lip gloss in just one word, it would be: sophisticated. It provides a look of understated elegance. I feel pretty but also a bit posh when wearing it! Needless to say, it is a luxurious product and one that makes you feel like you're treating yourself- lovely.

The colour is Spun Gold (15). It looks quite dark, and from the bottle, almost too dark. Do not be put off by this though, it's much more subtle on (well, you can see what it looks like on me from the photo above). It's a great colour to team with a smokey eye or if you have chosen to make your eye makeup the focus. It really softens the face and makes your lips look full and scrumptious but in a very natural way. I am rather besotted with it, and have nothing similar in my makeup collection so I find myself reaching for it very often! My only criticism would be that this lip gloss is quite sticky. For this reason it can't really be worn outside on a windy day as my hair gets stuck to it. However, it's fine indoors or on a calm, sunny day.

What do you think of this lip gloss? Have you tried any other Bobbi Brown lip glosses?

Price: £18 (Available to buy here).


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

What's On My Face Today


This is all the makeup that is on my face today...

Base
Benefit POREfessional Primer - This creates a smooth, even base for my foundation to sit on and ensures that my makeup stays on longer. My skin is oily-combination and POREfessional creates a matte finish, stopping my face from looking too shiny. (Full review here).
Clarins Instant Concealer - This is my favourite ever concealer! It's heavy enough to cover up any blemishes but blends in well and looks natural. It really brightens up the eye area as well as covering up dark circles. (Full review here). 
Armani Maestro Foundation (Applied with the Real Techniques Buffing Brush) - This foundation is very lightweight and is designed to be worn by people with quite oily skin. It creates a matte finish and dries very naturally. (Full review here). 
Armani Powder (with The Body Shop Bronzer/Face Brush) - I LOVE this powder. It's porcelain coloured and so provides a translucent glow all over my face, smoothing it to make it look even and soft. It sets my makeup in place really well and I'd be lost without it now. (Full review here). 
Clarins Fix Makeup Spray - This little wonder spray fixes my makeup in place for the day. It's basically like hairspray but for your face, keeping your makeup on longer and stopping unwanted shine. (Full review here). 

Colour
Mac Blusher in Fleur Power (Applied with The Body Shop Blusher Brush) - This blusher is one of the most pigmented that I have ever tried. It's so bold that a little bit goes a very long way. Fleur Power is a really bright pink shade that certainly makes an impact (Full review here). 
Nars Laguna Bronzer (Applied with the Real Techniques Contour Brush and Bronzer Brush) - My trusty Nars Laguna- a firm favourite amongst beauty bloggers and it has certainly become a holy grail product for me. It creates a really natural looking tan, providing you with a healthy glow all year round :) (Full review here). 
Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick (Applied with the Real Techniques Setting Brush) - This is my favourite highlighter. Powder ones suit me much better than liquid ones as my skin is quite oily, and I simply sweep this just above my cheeks, down my nose and on my brow bones for a subtle shimmer and glow. The Bobbi Brown Shimmer Bricks last forever and provide a beautiful finish. I would highly recommend treating yourself to one. (Full review here). 

Eyes and Brows
Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion - This is another holy grail product for me. I will never apply eyeshadow without it now. It stops eyeshadow from creasing, smudging or running all day and maintains the colour perfectly so it never needs to be reapplied. (Full review here). 
Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette (Applied with The Body Shop Eyeshadow Brush) Having been a huge fan of the UD Naked palette for years now I had to have this travel-friendly and more matte version as soon as it came out. It is now my most-used eyeshadow palette as I reach for it everyday for work. The colours are lovely and will suit anyone, and can be built up using the darker ones for the evening. (Full review here). 
No 7 Eyeliner - I've been using the No. 7 eyeliners for over ten years now and always loved how they never smudge. However, No 7 seem to have changed them recently so that they are harder to apply and less bold- don't fix it if it ain't broke please! May have to change to another brand if the change is permanent :( Any recommendations?
Estee Lauder Sumptuous Extreme Mascara - The more I've used this mascara the more I've fallen in love with it. It provides definition and a beautiful curl to the lashes, making them look very thick and long. This is a sample that I received in the free gift a few months ago but I'm thinking of buying the full size when it runs out. (Full review here). 
Benefit Brow-Zings - This brow palette is a real favourite of mine as it creates a very natural-looking finish. It's easy to apply and comes with instructions- I much prefer it to eyebrow pencils now. (Full review here). 
Illamasqua Brow and Lash Gel - This is my favourite eyebrow setting gel to date; no flakes, strong but natural hold and it is easy to apply without making any mess. 

Lips
Lush Bubblegum Scrub - In order to make my lips smooth and remove dry skin I always use a little lip scrub before applying my lipstick. This Lush Bubblegum one taste delicious! (Full review here). 
Helen E Cosmetics Lipstick - I received this in a Glossybox and have been really impressed with it. Not used to wearing red lipstick, I like that this one is quite subtle and not too in-your-face; perfect for a newbie! 

What do you think of the products that I've used? What are your holy grail products? 

Rosy x


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