Tuesday, 30 November 2010

MAC Winnings!!!

So, last month I won a giveaway!!  And not just any giveaway, but an AMAZING one, courtesy of the lovely Lauren from Lauren's Dressing Room!! The giveaway was to celebrate her blog’s anniversary and also reaching 1000 followers and the prize was incredible (one of the best I’ve seen on a blog!).

My prize was – a MAC eyeshadow, blusher and lipstick of my choice!!!! How amazing!  I was literally SO over the moon when I found out I won, I walked around with the biggest, constant grin on my face for the following week! 

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I choose Nylon eyeshadow, Pinch O Peach blush and Pretty Please lipstick and I adore what I chose. 

Nylon is my favourite MAC eyeshadow ever – I wear it every single day.  I use it all over my lid and up to my brow bone to highlight.  The colour is beautiful, a shimmery, golden shade.  I could not live without this in my makeup regime!

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Pinch O’ Peach is a really pretty blush, but I really don’t see the peach in it, haha!  Regardless I still love it and I’ve been wearing it with a sweep of bronzer all week.  Its a sheertone blush but still nicely pigmented so I can see this lasting me ages.

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Pretty Please.  I honestly don’t have a lip colour like this in my whole collection so its great to try something different.  I’d describe this as a pink pearl shimmer, which looks gorgeous over other lip colours as it adds a shimmery gleam.  On its own its slightly pale, but pretty and very unique!  My Mum and Dad both commented on my makeup when I wore this, they both really like it!  Not too sure what’d it look like on people with slightly darker skin, so if you own this then let me know!  One thing is because it is so pale – it really emphasizes any imperfections on the lips (e.g dry skin, picked skin etc).  It also applies quite unevenly but I don’t mind too much.

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I would like to say a humungous thank you to Lauren, for my pressies and for being so generous!  You can visit her blog HERE

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Have you got any of these MAC products?  What would you have chosen??

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Monday, 29 November 2010

I got my eyebrows did!

I have the bushiest, fattest, most caterpillar-like eyebrows out of all my friends, and although I quite like them, I’m way too scared to do anything other than occasionally pluck the strays.  I really believe that eyebrows are so important when it comes to looking fabulous and they really shape your face and complete any look.

The other day I had my first ever eyebrow shaping experience – can you believe I waited 22 years to get my eyebrows fixed?!  I met the lovely Jenna Treat at a beauty event in London and I can tell you now, she’s amazing!  She made me feel completely relaxed and everything about her is fab – her amazing Canadian accent, her bubbly, fun personality and the fact that I instantly felt I could let her fiddle with my brows.

I asked her what she would do to mine and she said that my brows were lovely and didn’t need much work, albeit a bit of evening out and shapening.  I circled the problem areas that she mentioned to me below – e.g an extra tuft of hair on my right brow, not enough arch on the left etc.  I also showed her the end of my right brow which ends quite abruptly, due to me stupidly over tweezing a few months ago thinking they were strays and she said that they should take around 7 months to grow back, so I should just fill it in until then.

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I agreed with her and let her get to work – she used a hot wax on a wooden stick and applied it to the areas and gently waxed – and it didn’t hurt at all!  I surprised myself by not flinching and I let Jenna work her magic, it almost made me fall asleep I was so relaxed.  After she waxed and tweezed she added a tiny bit of brow powder to the end of my right brow to fill it in and showed me my new look in a mirror.

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Ahhhhhh I LOVE THEM!!  I have never been so happy with them, ever.  How great do they look?! 

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I am so so happy with my new brows and I vow to now keep them in good shape!

You can visit Jenna at Real Hair salon, in Chelsea, London (salon website here).  I thoroughly suggest going to her if you’ve never had your brows waxed before, I've already recommended her to all my friends and will be popping to the salon next year once I need another bit of shaping!

How do you manage your brows?  Ever had them waxed?

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Friday, 26 November 2010

BENEFIT Collection!

I’ll admit that I didn’t own ONE piece of Benefit makeup until a few months ago, and I’ve somehow become equipped with these items over the past months through various reasons – presents, magazine giveaways and sales!  I now have a nice little benefit stash which I quite like!

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It Concealer stick – I’m really impressed with this concealer, I automatically thought it’d be too dark for me but the colour is surprisingly good for my skin in the summer when I have caught some sun.  Good medium coverage, nice and easy application in a crayon format.

Eye Bright stick – I nearly always wear black kohl in my waterline so I use this rarely.  Sometimes I pop a tiny bit on the inside corners of my eyes just to widen them.  Looks nice on the waterline but I need to get used to not having black on!

Bad Girl eyeliner stick – Nice fat kohl black eyeliner.  Sometimes I think this is slightly too chunky to use day to day but its perfect for dramatic smokey eyes in the evening.  However, I find that this smudges quite a bit throughout the day compared to my usual Gosh black eyeliner, which is good if you want a smokey rock chick look, but can get messy.  It could do with better lasting power.

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“That gal” brightening face primer – I adore the packaging of this, its so cute and retro!  I love the idea of the product – a brightening primer and I’ve been experimenting with how I use it.  I think your supposed to wear it underneath foundation but I really don’t notice much of a difference when I do!  I most like using this as a pink highlighter on my cheek and brow bone.  Its a really pretty sheer pink colour which isn’t too noticeable blended out, so its nice and subtle for every day wear.  For £22 I think its overpriced though, it’s not a must have.

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Bad Gal Lash mascara – I haven’t used this yet!!!! Shock horror!  I’ve been loving my MAC Zoom lash and TBS Super Volume too much, so I will open this up once they’ve run out and I’ll do a big review on what I think of it!  I’ve heard so many different views on this mascara so I’m excited to make my own opinion on it.  The review will contain before and after pictures obviously!

Stay Don’t Stray eye primer -  I didn’t think I’d ever use another primer other than UDPP but I’ve used this a few times for work when I’ve forgotten to pack my UDPP when I travel back to Essex.  It’s actually not too bad, it holds my eyeshadow well, but it just doesn’t make the shadows ‘pop’ as much as the Urban Decay one does!  I will use this all up though and the sample size is perfect to carry around when travelling.

What I think about Benefit & their products:

I adore going past Benefits stores and stands as its always so neat, colourful and vibrant and the packaging makes me want everything, although I don’t think the actual products are any better than normal high street makeup brands.  I definitely think it is the packaging and style that makes it popular, but nothing is that amazing, in my opinion. This may be because I’m bias because I think its quite expensive for what it is, I think its the packaging which you’re paying for.  Saying that, I’ve only tried the products above, I’ve never tried their famous blushers or bronzers so I might be wrong!

What are your favourite Benefit products?  Do you have any recommendations?

xx

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Monday, 22 November 2010

My Lip-gloss Collection!

I don’t have a wide variety of lip-glosses for a beauty blogger, as I’m definitely more of a lipstick girl.  I hate sticky lip-glosses and my hair always gets stuck to my lips, no matter what the weather.  But I have quite a pretty collection and although I don’t wear them much, they’re very nice to look at!

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As you can see, I love pink and coral colours – I don’t think other colours suit me as much, or I’m just not brave enough to wear them in general.  I don’t own any red glosses as I prefer to wear my red lips matte or just with lipstick – I’m not sure why but I feel like red glossy lips are a bit too much, on me anyway!

I’ll swatch and review each gloss in brand order for you!

The Body Shop Limited Edition Glosses & Permanent Hi Shine Lip Treatments

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Top to Bottom: Love Gloss #19 (Limited edition out NOW for Winter collection), Love Gloss #13 (Permanent), Lip Bloom in Tulip Peach (LE), Crystal Sparkle Gloss (LE), Lip life Gloss (LE) , Hi Shine Lip Treatment in 01 Pink Cream, Hi Shine Lip Treatment 17 Golden Coral (LE).

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(Swatched top [left] to bottom [right])

I love the two Love Glosses in this selection for just adding a touch of shine and shimmer to the lips over lipstick – very pretty and feminine (I’ve even stocked up on the LE one because I love it so much!).  The other limited edition ones that TBS have released are gorgeous aren’t they?  I especially love the peach one and the pink with lots of shimmer in.  The two hi-shines are pretty but very sticky – in fact all of them are very tacky apart from the love glosses, but I like them for special occasions

The Body Shop Permanent Love Glosses

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L-R Love Gloss #01, Lip Colour 10, Lip and Cheek Stain 03 (LE), Love Gloss #16, Love Gloss #18

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I have almost all of the love glosses and a few of the old ones and I really like them.  They are a tad sticky but the colours are nice and they are all quite pigmented so you can wear them alone or with lipstick to create a unique shade/gloss which I like to do with them.

Bourjois and Barry M

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L-R Bourjois Effet 3D Les Nudes in #34, Bourjois Eau de Gloss in #13 Rose a L’5eau, Barry M Lip Gloss in #11, Barry M Glossy tubes in #4

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The Bourjois Effet Les Nudes is my favourite lip-gloss ever!! I love everything about it; the smell, the consistency, the wand, the colour! Its my perfect nude lip gloss, the wand is a brush so the application is made easy and it is not sticky!!  Its incredible, I will forever continue buying this!  The other Bourjois one is okay but I’ll admit I hardly ever reach for it, I find it quite gritty?  I love Barry M products in general and the lip glosses are nice – lovely and pigmented, but sticky, but the thing I love about them the most is their smell – delicious, like sweets!

Miscellaneous – Benefit, Sephora, Revlon & Natural Collection

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L-R Benefit Her Glossiness in ‘My People, Your People’, Sephora Ultra Shine Gloss in #11, Revlon Super Lustrous in #21 Pink Crystals, Natural Collection Juicy Lips

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Nice glosses but all quite tacky – especially the Revlon one.  The Sephora one smells delicious and is nicely pigmented.  I love the Natural Collection peach shade – its so affordable and the colour is lovely, but it does sometimes separate in the tube if I don’t use it much.  I got the Benefit one free in Glamour magazine a while back and use it every now and then.

MAC Lip Glass

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L-R - Strange Potion (VV Collection), Live and Dye (Blonde, Redhead and Brunette Collection)

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I only have two MAC glosses, can you believe it!!  But I love them both but use them rarely as they are both LE and I don’t want them to ever run out. 

So that's my whole lip gloss collection!!  As I said, my favourite is the Bourjois Effet Les Nudes, its incredible, go try it out in store!  I definitely think I have too many glosses so won’t be buying anymore for a while now until I finish a few.

What’s your favourite lip gloss?  Do you know of any other non-sticky ones?  Which ones above do you like the look of?

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Sunday, 21 November 2010

Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser Review

I confessed in my last skin care post that I’m always tempted by skincare products, even though I know that I should just stick to what I know works for me – but I can’t help it! 

I’ve been wanting to try Liz Earle's Hot Cloth Cleanser for a long time now and I managed to get my hands on some last month, complete with two muslin clothes.  I’d heard so many good things about their number one product and I couldn’t wait to try it out for myself.  First things first – when you order from Liz Earle’s site, the package comes beautifully wrapped, it felt like Christmas when I opened it – they definitely know how to impress and treat their customers and they give fantastic customer service which I’m always looking for when I shop.

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How you use it – The cleanser is very simple to use, but effective.  You rub the cleanser into dry skin in circular motions, then use the muslin cloth, wet, in circular motions to remove the cleanser and to gently exfoliate.  The muslin cloth is gentle enough for every day use and makes it quite fun to cleanse, instead of just using a flannel or your hands to remove the product.

The cleanser itself is lovely.  I adore the smell and its made me fall in love with Eucalyptus essential oil all over again.  The product smells like a Greek steam room, it really opens my airways when I rub this in and I feel like its doing wonders for my skin.  The formula is lovely and creamy and the pump gives you the perfect amount of product for your whole face (you may need to use more if your taking eye makeup off).

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How it affected my skin – Straight after I use this product, my skin feels so soft – this must be down to the combination of the muslin cloth and the moisturizing ingredients in the cleanser.  You all know that I have extremely acne prone skin and any change in my skincare regime gives me spots.  I gained a few pimples (three tiny ones to be precise) after four days of using this, but I wasn’t too bothered.  I let them settle down for a few days and then started using the product again and my skin has been fine ever since!  On some days I just use this to take my eye makeup off as I’m worried about getting spots but its been alright so far!  This takes eye makeup off okay – bearing in mind I wear a lot of mascara and dark eyeliner and shadow, its takes about 2 1/2 pumps to take the makeup off both eyes, and I use the cloth very gently to remove it from around the eye area after.

What I think – This is a lovely luxury product and I’m surprised it hasn’t irritated my skin more.  The smell is amazing, the packaging is lovely and mature and it leaves my skin feeling soft and cleansed.  I also love that you get a little zip-up regime bag to keep the muslin clothes and cleanser in for when you’re travelling (with the starter kit).  The cleanser itself is £11.50, which is more expensive than any other cleanser I’ve tried, but I’d repurchase this as a luxurious treat for myself.

Does anyone else use this cleanser? Do you use a muslin cloth with your facial products?

I’ve also started using a Sebamed cleansing bar which I will do a post on soon!

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Thursday, 11 November 2010

Sleek Bad Girl Swatches

When this palette first starting making its debut on beauty blogs I knew I had to have it!  I rushed out to Superdrug to pick it up and I’m so glad I did. 

I think that if I could create my very own smokey palette, it probably would have been identical to this!!  The colours are all ones that I would use on myself on a night out, Sleek did very well here in my opinion.

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Top Row – Innocence, Gullible, Blade, Gun Metal, Underground, Noir

Bottom row – Intoxicated, Envy, Obnoxious, Abyss, Twilight, Rebel

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My favourites are Blade, Gun Metal, Intoxicated and Twilight, although all are beautiful and I can see myself using them all.  Certain colours in this palette really remind me of my Kat Von D palette (which you can view here) which is also one of my favourite eye shadows sets.  I’m also delighted that they bought this out as its very similar to the Graphite palette they released a while ago, which was limited edition and I didn’t manage to get it – they shades are very similar, so I’m happy!

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What I think - I like the fact that Sleek are now coming to terms with the fact that the public want the eye shadows in their palettes named, so now we can easily identify them.  All shadows are beautifully pigmented and for £5.99 the quality again is fantastic.  Sleek is fast becoming one of my favourite makeup brands, if only they would start replying to my emails – (I’ve sent them about 5, none of which have been replied to yet!).  I’m glad to say this palette is also becoming permanent, so there's lots of time for you to go out and grab yours.  I’ll do some nice dramatic smokey eye looks with them when I have a break from Uni!

Have you got this palette yet? What are your favourite colours and would you like to see some looks created with this set?

XX

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Thursday, 4 November 2010

October Favourites!

I was a very naughty bunny last month and I didn’t do my September favourites!!  I didn’t think there was any point as I spent three weeks of September stuck inside my house with no makeup on after having my tonsils out, but I’m back this month with loads of favourites!!

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MAC Zoom Fast Black Lash Mascara

You can read my full review of this mascara HERE.  Its all I have been wearing all month and I adore it, it makes my lashes lovely and thick and I have had no reason to use any other mascara this month.

MACs Chatterbox Lipstick

Bought this ages ago but never used it until this month!  I love the shade and tone of this pink lippie and I feel that a slick of it instantly makes me look and feel feminine and pretty.  Goes really well with my blonde hair and a great way to add some colour to my usual black wardrobe.

MAC UNKNOWN Blush

This is my housemates and I have been using it at every chance I get!  I desperately want to get one of my own, but the writing on the back has rubbed off and we can’t tell what shade it is! PANIC!! My housemate even took it to a MAC store and asked a SA to match it up but even she couldn’t work it out, making us worry that this shade has been discontinued.  I have a slight feeling it may be Melba but I can’t be sure.  DOES ANYONE KNOW!? 

Its the most beautiful pink peach shade, but it is matt and so pigmented that you only need the tiniest bit to warm your face up.  I NEED this blush for myself, help!!

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Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Worker

My hair has been so dry recently and I’m starting to panic that bits are snapping off!  Thankfully I always have this Miracle worker to hand and its restored my hair somewhat.  It definitely feels a lot more soft and nourished since I’ve been using this twice a week!

The Body Shop’s Cranberry Hand lotion

Perfect size for carrying around in my bag and it smells delicious!! Cranberry really reminds me of Christmas as it only comes out in the Limited Edition Christmas range at TBS, so I stock up on the range whenever it comes out.  This is the first year that TBS have done hand creams in the Christmas scents and I’m glad they did.  At £3 as well its really affordable!

The Body Shop’s Cocoa Butter Body Butter

I think its because of stress with the amount of Uni work I’m under, that my eczema has really flared up all over my arms and shoulders - cringe.  I’d never used Cocoa Butter before on the dry patches so I decided to give it a try and its definitely keeping my arms soft and less itchy.  I really like the smell and the thickness of it is perfect for my dry skin.  I’ll be using this all winter to keep my skin soft and supple!

The Body Shops Vanilla and Nutmeg Lip balm

Another Limited Edition Christmas product, this one is last years Vanilla lip balm and I can’t get enough.  The smell is amazing, it moisturizes my lips in this cold weather and it adds a shine and gloss to my lips which I adore.  I keep applying this on top of my favourite lipsticks also.

Revlon Matte Lipstick in Strawberry Suede

On nights out or when I’m going out to fancy meals I’ll use this lipstick.  Its the ultimate red, matte, glamour-puss colour.  I love this lipstick because it literally lasts all night without needing to reapply it – even after eating.  The colour is perfect, the tube is slick, I can’t find any faults with this!

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Misguided Nail varnish MissCellaneous Nude Nail Splash

This varnish came out in last month’s Cosmopolitan magazine and I needed it after seeing it on a few blogs.  I adore it and its all I’ve been wearing all month.  Its a lovely nude for my pale skin, its really plain but I love having bare looking nails. 

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Loving –

  • The weather! I love everything about autumn – the golden, falling, crunchy leaves, spicy chai tea in the evenings, burning cinnamon candles in my home, carving pumpkins, lighting sparklers – autumn and winter are such romantic seasons although I’m pretty gutted I have no one to share this Christmas with!
  • Food – having to cook for myself every night can be draining but I’ve loved experimenting recently.  My most used ingredients being avocados, homous, feta cheese, olives, basmati rice, meatballs!
  • Photography – another year at uni, another few months spending my time shooting endlessly and letting my creativity flow.  This month I’ll be spending many hours of each day in the darkroom – one of my favourite places to be, developing film, printing pictures and spending time alone, making art and thinking to myself!
  • Family – I have the most amazing parents ever and I am entirely grateful for their love and support in everything I do.  I wouldn’t be half the person I am without them.  I can talk to them about anything and they are always there for me, if I’m down I know that they're only a phone call away to cheer me up.  They even let me gatecrash their 23rd first date anniversary last weekend to take me ghost hunting in a haunted village in England for my university project – amazing!

Loathing –

  • Too much work!! – The next two weeks are going to be extremely busy for me, its unreal.  I have a Dissertation Outline due, an Auction & Print Sale at my university to organize, two acting jobs (one in Bournemouth & the other in Suffolk), and overtime hours at The Body Shop.  I’m going to really suffer and get drained emotionally and physically, but I’m determined to get it all done.
  • Housework – House visitors + takeaway pizza + Lots of vino = lots of washing to do & sticky floors!  I can’t stand the mess, even though the most of it has already been done, but I don’t have any time to finish!

I hope everyone is well and having a good autumn so far! 

Did you enjoy my favourites and Loving & Loathing's?  Are any of the above your current favourites as well?

AND what shade do you think the MAC blush is???!!

xxxx

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Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Stargazer swatches & reviews!

I am a big fan of Stargazer makeup - I remember being 16 and going to the local ear piercing parlour, which stocked stargazer products and I loved trying the colours on the back of my hand and my friends and I were always using the semi-permanent colourful hair dyes!  When they contacted me to ask me if I’d like to try out some more products, after reading my review on one of my favourite nail varnishes ever, HERE, I jumped at the chance!

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Star Pearl Eye shadows - £3.00 each (Had a little accident with the first and chipped it a bit!)

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L-R Peach Flush, Red Raptour

I am in love with these two eye shadows and they are the stars of the show here.  How beautiful are they!!!  Peach Flush is a perfect dupe for MAC’s vanilla and so much cheaper.  At such a good price I’m surprised that not everyone in the blog world is raving about them!  The second is a stunning pink berry colour which I can’t wait to use.  They are SO pigmented and not glittery or chunky at all – more like finely milled pigmented pressed shadows, very similar to Sleek’s eyeshadows.  Very impressed with these and I will definitely be trotting down to my local New Look to get more of them!

Nail polishes - £2.50 each

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A very cute glittery pink – its stunning in real life but so hard to photograph.  It doesn’t really look as pink in real life, it just sparkles the prettiest pink, blue and purple in the light.  I recommend you to try it on if there's a tester so you can see how pretty it really is.  Also looks lovely over other nail polishes!

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Another hard one to photograph – Purple and sparkly! Very pretty, the glitter is very fine and catches the light beautifully.

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My favourite out of the bunch – a two-tone metallic purple and navy blue, its stunning and I’ve only just got this back off my Mum who pinched it as soon as I opened the package!  Looks like a deep navy but shines purple and blue in the light!

All of the polishes need about two coats each and they last a good few days on the nails without chipping.  They are easy to remove – even the glittery ones, and they take about as long as normal nail polishes do to dry.

Glitter Eye Dusts - £3.00 each

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L-R – 103, 101, 5, 107

I was slightly shocked when I first saw these and my immediate reaction was ‘Wow they’re bright!!!’ and I was unsure of how I’d use them.   Once I’d swatched these however, I can definitely image using 103 and 5 as a hint of colour when I do my black smokey eye look.  They are all very beautifully pigmented, although purple being a bit more chunky than the others.  They really remind me of Barry M’s Dazzle Dusts in terms of pigmentation and colour range, although a few quid cheaper!  A must have for fancy dress and experimenting!

What I Think – Stargazer offers really good quality products for a great price.  It can be hard to get hold of in shops – and the stands in New Look are often quite a mess, but its worth having a browse because I think you can find some real gems.  The only thing that bugs me with the products is that they have numbers instead of names, although I can tell that they have started naming new products such as the pearl shadows.

I’ve found new favourites in the Star Pearl eye shadows and I can tell they will be a staple in my everyday make-up kit for a long time coming.

Have you used or got any Stargazer products?  What’s your favourite? How would you wear the Glitter Eye Dusts?

Please note I was sent the products free of charge but I was not paid to review them, and all opinions expressed are honest!

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