Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Formula X Mani

I've heard a lot of good things about the nail brand Formula X, so of course when I was wondering around the mothership that is Sephora, I just had to try them out.
They do a starter set which comes with a nail cleanser, base coat and top coat, and in addition they were also doing a set where you could add a nail polish in for free, so of course I went for that one.

First things first, the nail cleanser. I don't feel like this is 100% necessary as it didn't do too much for my nails. However if I wasn't doing a colour and just leaving my nails natural, this may come in handy for maintaining their 'presentable' state. The one bad thing I have to say about this is that the brush seems smaller than the others, therefore it was hard to work with and meant you couldn't do your whole nail in a couple of strokes. I can already feel myself neglecting this step and going straight into the base coat.
I found the base coat to be a definite step up from the cleanser. The brush was bigger, if smoothed out my nails and overall did a better job at prepping them than most other base coats I've tried. The formula isn't too thick, nor too thin which is perfect for a nice, even coat.
As for the nail colour itself, I opted for the shade Radical which is a beautiful muted lilac shade. This is fairly comparable to Essie's Lilacism, however I find that one to be a bit on the pastel side whereas  Radical is more subtle on the nails. I really like the formula of these and the brush makes it really easy to do one nail quickly, but it's not too big so you still have control. Two coats of this and I was happy with the colour pay off, you could probably get away with one, but always opt for two to get a more opaque finish. The colour range was really lovely, they had a lot of muted colours and neutrals  which are perfect for transitioning into Autumn and for an everyday shade too, so there's definitely a colour for everyone.
Base coat and colour check. Now on to the top coat.
I find it hard to stray away from the Seche Vite top coat, but for the sake of todays post I put that for one side for a moment, and I have to say I'm happy I did. Although nothing seems to compare to my well loved Seche Vite, this one certainly gave it a run for its money. The formulation is quite thick, but I find that adds more shine and really helps to lock in the colour. Again, the brush is a lovely size too, making it very easy to apply. As far as the lasting power goes, I've only had it on for one day, but no chips yet! I'll definitely report back with a full verdict of the lasting power so check back for that.
Quick tip! A couple of days after you've painted your nails, reapply the top coat to help them last a lot longer and prevent chipping!
Have you tried Formula X before?

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The Pre Cleanse

I thought today I would share with you my makeup removal process and the products I find work the best for taking off all that crap at the end of that day!
Recently I've started taking my eye and face makeup off separately, not sure why, but I do find different products work well for different areas. For my eyes I simply squirt some of the L'Oreal Micellar Water on to a large cotton pad. This micellar water can make your skin feel a bit tacky after, but as I only focus it on my eye area I don't find that a problem. I love micellar waters for removing eye makeup, they're super gentle yet effective. However, if I'm sporting the waterproof mascara that day I may gravitate to something specifically tailored for removing eye makeup, such as The Body Shop Camomile Waterproof Eye and Lip Makeup Remover.
Sticking with The Body Shop Camomile range, the cleansing butter works a treat at melting off face makeup. So many brands have been bringing out cleansing butters and this one is a great, cheaper alternative to the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm. Although you get less product in The Body Shop one, the price makes it totally justifiable. The formula of this is very hydrating and leaves my skin so soft after. I scoop some out of the tin then rub it into my skin and it turns into an oil and literally melts your makeup off. I'll just rinse this off with a muslin cloth or flannel and bam, your face is ready for a good old cleanse.
What do you love to use to take your makeup off?

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Desk Essentials

1. Keep things lively - Adding some greenery or flowers to your desk can be a great way to add a little something something to your work environment. Also, having some beautiful flowers blooming in the background generally makes you happier and keeps you positive for days you're stuck staring at your screen! If you don't feel like buying real flowers every week and struggle to keep them alive (like me) then opt for fake flowers, they're just as pleasing to the eye and require no maintenance what so ever...perfect!

2. Keep things light - Having a good ol' lamp is obvious when it comes to dressing up a plain old desk and the typical 'desk lamps' have been making a comeback. The one shown here is from IKEA and is channelling the industrial trend that will be hitting out homes coming Autumn and Winter 2014. These have been released in loads of different colours so you'll sure find one to fit your style.

3. Keep things smelling good - Having an area that smells good is always a positive thing and will help you feel happier when working, so, why not add a candle or two? I love the Diptyque candles and the packaging is lovely and doubles up as a great little desk accessory. Another trick with candles is once you've burnt down to the bottom you can wash them out and reuse them to house all your pens and pencils!

4. Keep inspired - There's nothing worse than having a lack of inspiration when trying to pull something together, so adding a motivational quote here and there never hurt nobody. These are great little reminders of what keeps you motivated and in the game and gives you that push you may well need when you're on the brink of a mental breakdown...we've all been there people...we all need motivation...

5. Keep organised - Having a clean space means having a clean mind. Keeping your desk organised means finding things when you need them is no problem at all! I find storage boxes and folders helpful when organising paperwork and make sure you label them up just to ensure you don't end up looking through every folder in the house. Also, use a diary or this chalkboard organiser which you can pick up at Next. These help to keep your days in check and let you know exactly what you need to get done for the day ahead

6 - Keep things colourful and comfortable - There's nothing worse than being uncomfortable when you know you're going to be glued to your desk for the next 6 hours so pick out a pillow to keep back pain at bay! And while you're at it, you might as well make it a colourful one! Colour is another happy injector and will keep you feeling more positive when you're hard at work! 

Friday, 15 August 2014

The August Beauty Bag

This month has been all about, simple lightweight makeup and these are the products that have make it into the everyday makeup bag. The bag itself is from not on the high street, it's extremely well made, and I'm in love with grey and orange detailing! This bag also comes in different sizes so you can tailer it to your needs.
The first thing poking out is my base product I've been using, which is the Laura Mercier tinted moisturiser. This one is oil free which is great for summer and for a tinted moisturiser it offers a nice amount of coverage without weighing the skin down. My Sigma flat top kabuki F80 brush is great to use with this tinted moisturiser, if buffs it in seamlessly and leaves a flawless finish, and its super duper soft too! For my cheeks, of course The Body Shop's honey bronzer has not left my side, I love it for giving an bronzy glow to my skin, and I can contour with it too as its matte. I've also been loving the Bourjois 02 cream blush which is a beautiful peach toned pink. I love the cream to power formula of these and they are definitely one of my favourite cream blushers. I've been keeping very simple for eyes with just a bit of eyeliner and mascara and for that I've been reaching for the Daniel Sandler waterproof eyeliner in grey velvet and Benefit's they're real mascara. I've never really tried any waterproof eyeliners and I love this one, it stays on all day and doesn't smudge, also being grey means it gives a softer look which is prefect for day to day use. Then nude for the lips too! MAC's Patisserie lipstick is my all time favourite nude, it's my 'my lips but better' shade and goes with every look!
What products have you been carrying around recently?