Beauty & Lifestyle Picks For Halloween

Sunday, 29 October 2017

Halloween Lifestyle & Beauty Favourites

| Beauty & Lifestyle Picks For Halloween! |

"Double double toil and trouble", the spookiest day of the year is almost here and before the ghostly ghouls and goblins appear it's time to gather the Halloween treats near. I'm starting to get into Halloween mode with ethereal makeup picks, pumpkin scents, a supernatural read, rich Autumnal Essie hues and a fiendish fancy or two.

Five Too Faced Favourites

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Favourite Too Faced Products

| Five Too Faced Favourites! |

Over the last few months, I've been sharing a few of my favourite products from various brands I love. We've had the Hourglass, Nars and Charlotte Tilbury instalments but today it's all about Too Faced. There are lots of sweet-smelling products that will have your mouth drooling in this roundup and stay tuned for the dreamy ethereal highlighter *insert love heart eye emoji*

The fatal product that started my Too Faced love affair was the cult classic Chocolate Bar palette. It's certainly a neutral palette lover's dream with all the brown, bronze and gold tones. I find myself reaching for this palette a lot as the shadows are easy to work with and I find it easy to achieve a quick minimal look for my everyday makeup routine. 

The Hangover Primer was my second purchase from the brand and the hydrating lightweight cream leaves my skin feeling smooth and ready for makeup application. A must-have for anyone with dry or dehydrated skin, and it's also the perfect pick-me-up for the skin during the Winter months! It's formulated with coconut water and probiotics which hydrates and revives dry, lacklustre skin. As you can imagine it has a sweet delicious scent of coconuts but it isn't heavily scented so it's kind to my sensitive skin. 

Top Photo: Too Faced Sweet Peach Shadows; Bottom Photo: Too Faced Ray Of Light Highlighter

The Sweet Peach eyeshadow palette became a favourite of mine during the Summer due to its beautiful selection of shades. There's a bit of everything in there from purples to browns to pinks so you can create many versatile looks. And who could resist that cute pink packaging? 

A recent addition to my collection is the Sun Bunny bronzer which has a satin finish so it adds a slight golden glow as well as warming up the face. The formula of the powder feels soft and luxurious and is easy to blend. It has great pigmentation that you can apply with a light hand for a subtle look but you can also build up the colour.

Another recent addition that I got for my birthday was the Love Light Prismatic Highlighter in 'Ray Of Light'. This swoon-worthy pink-toned highlighter is unlike anything else I have in my collection and I initially had reservations about the shade as I thought it might be too pink. I decided to step out of comfort zone and I'm so glad I did because on the skin it looks peachy and has a golden shift to it when the light hits it. 

What are your favourite Too Faced products?

Cliona xx

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Five Autumn Skincare & Bodycare Favourites

Monday, 23 October 2017

Autumn Skincare Favourites

| Five Autumn Skincare & Bodycare Favourites! |

Autumn is the epitome of cosiness and every evening I treat myself to a mini pamper session by slathering my body in nourishing creams and applying hydrating as well as clarifying products to my skin. Recently I've been reaching for five products that have become a staple in my skincare routine.

I begin my evening routine by removing my makeup and cleansing my face. My favourite type of cleanser to use is a cleansing milk and I recently stumbled upon a cheap but cheerful one. The Nivea Sensitive cleansing milk has been a welcomed addition my skincare routine as the formula is gentle and nourishing for the cold months. I use it as the second cleanser in my double cleanse routine and whilst it's not the best cleanser I've ever used, it does the job and the price makes my bank account happy!

My skin gets quite congested as a result of sugary treats around this time of year and the weather and central heating also wreak havoc on the condition of my skin. To combat this I've been using Hylamide Pore Flush* recently and this plant-based facial spray has been helping decongest my skin. When I first started using it I got two spots as the product was extracting the dirt from my pores. I think it has a refreshing plant-like scent that also has a hint of sweetness to it. I also think my skin looks a little less lacklustre and it hasn't dried out my skin, nor did it feel harsh either.

Another facial spray that's ideal for this time of year is Pixi Hydrating Milky Mist. The spray is formulated with numerous skin-loving ingredients such as linoleic acid, provitamin A and hyaluronic acid which promote healthy and hydrated skin. I apply it every morning and evening but if my skin is feeling more parched than usual I often spritz it a few times throughout the day without it interfering with my makeup. 

Hylamide pore flush

My first bodycare favourite is one I discovered during the Summer and I've been reaching for it ever since. The Garnier Ultimate Blends body lotion contains a blend of oat milk which is known for its restoring properties as well as white almond cream which nourishes the skin, leaving it feeling soft. The hypoallergenic formula is also soothing and kind to my sensitive skin. It also helped revive my skin when it became dry and itchy after a reaction to suncream during the Summer.

When I want something a little bit more indulgent I reach for The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin body butter*. The quintessential Autumn scent always has me craving homebaked Autumnal treats and the rich, creamy formula is perfect for dry, parched skin but it still sinks into the skin fairly quickly so I can pop my jammies on straight away. The scent makes me feel oh so cosy and it's the perfect rainy evening treat! 

What are your favourite Autumn skincare & bodycare products?

Cliona xx

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*Products marked with asterisk have been sent to me from a brand.

Hit & Miss Products

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Hit & Miss Products

| Hit & Miss Products! |

As a beauty enthusiast, I love trying out new products and sometimes I find products that are holy grail status but sometimes I try products that end up being lousy or not worth the money. Today I'll be sharing some products that have wowed me as well as a few products that get a thumbs down from me in the latest instalment of my hit & miss posts.

The first product that made it onto the hit list is the Sunkissed Bronze & Contour palette*. I received this little palette about a year ago and I used it lots during the Autumn/Winter last year. However, during the Spring/Summer, my makeup collection got quite messy because I knew I was moving house and I completely forgot about the palette as it was hidden at the back of my drawer. I rediscovered this gem a few weeks ago and I forgot how much I loved it! Inside the palette, you'll find a warm matte bronzer, a petal pink blush as well as a radiant champagne highlighter. The powders blend easily and they look beautiful on the skin, especially the highlighter which adds a gorgeous radiant glow that's perfect for daytime makeup looks. 

I bought the Nars All Day Luminous Weightless foundation a few months ago and I wasn't blown away by it at first. However, I pulled it out of my drawer again and I've fallen in love with it! I would describe it as a full coverage foundation as it completely covered and concealed everything including spots. I only need to apply concealer under my eyes whenever I use this so I've been reaching for it on early mornings as it means I can skip concealing redness and spots on the face. It has a luminous finish, it feels light on the skin and it doesn't cling to my dry patches. I highly recommend this one! 

I've also been reaching for the Tanya Burr My Paradise eyeshadow quad a lot lately. The quad houses four easy-to-wear daytime shades to achieve a quick look. The shadows have subtle pigmentation so you can build the colour up gradually for a soft daytime look. 

Hit & Miss Products

I love my Mac Mineralize Rich lipstick in Pure Pout as the neutral pink shade is the perfect everyday nude hue and the formula is creamy and moisturising. However, I wouldn't repurchase the lipstick and I wouldn't recommend it to people because I think it's over-priced for what you get. It's a little bit more moisturising than the creme-sheen formula but not by much so I'd say save yourself the extra €8 and just buy the creme-sheen formula instead as this formula is not worth the extra money in my opinion. 

The next product is a little controversial as most people love it; Benefit They're Real mascara was not worth the hype for me, unfortunately. I thought the spiky ball (it looks like a weapon used in The Hunger Games!) on the end of the wand was a bit gimmicky and it was often the cause of mascara ending up on my eyelid. It did give me good length and volume but I can get just as good results from a more budget-friendly mascara. I think it's over-priced and over-hyped, to be honest!

Another disappointing product is the NYX Professional Makeup jumbo eye pencil in Lavender. I loved the milk jumbo pencil so I wanted to try another shade and I thought the lavender one was so unique so I gave it a try. Lavender is a hard shade to get right and sadly NYX didn't get the formula of this particular shade right. It creased and faded noticeably after 2-3 hours of wear and after a few hours, my eye makeup looked like a complete mess. I tried lots of different things to make it work but unfortunately, I couldn't make it work for me in the end.

What products have you been loving or not loving recently?

Cliona xx

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*Products marked with an asterisk have been gifted from a brand.

Cosy Rituals To Brighten Up The A/W Evenings

Friday, 13 October 2017

Cosy Autumn evening routine

| Cosy Rituals To Brighten Up The A/W Evenings! |

The shorter evenings and the cold weather means there's always an excuse to have an abundance of cosy evenings. The simple pleasures like a steaming cup of tea, a fluffy dressing gown and a binge-worthy Netflix series are the perfect pick-me-ups after a long, tiring day. 

Adding Sparkle To My Autumn Makeup

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Prima pressed glitters

| Adding Sparkle To My Autumn Makeup! |

With Halloween just around the corner and the festive period slowly creeping up on us, it's the perfect excuse to start adding some sparkle to your makeup bag! I've recently been trying out some swoon-worthy pressed glitter eyeshadows from Prima* which will add some magic to your makeup look.

I never usually bother with glitters as they can require a lot of effort to apply and are normally quite messy to use as well. But the first thing I loved about these pressed glitters is the easy application. I've been applying them using my ring finger, packing the product onto the lid over some matte eyeshadows but they can also be applied straight to the naked eye and the best part is you don't need to use glue! There isn't any fallout so I was able to apply my foundation first and I was also able to apply my usual makeup in the morning for College, and then in the evening, I added some of the glitter eyeshadow to transform my look from day to night - An essential for party season! 

As you can see from the photo below, the glitters have a beautiful iridescent finish that glistens in the light. The staying power is excellent too as once they're on they don't budge until you remove them with a makeup remover and as well as that they're affordable, costing a mere £3.75! I received six shades in a beautiful silver palette* and I was really impressed with all of the shades and how well they performed. 

Prima Pressed Glitters
Prima pressed glitters review
Swatches L To R: Merry Berry // Hot Chocolate // Liquid Gold // Pink To Make The Boys Wink // Drama At The Disco // Starlight

The first shade I have is Merry Berry*, a vibrant red shade (perfect for Christmas!!), Hot Chocolate* is a bronzey chocolate brown, Liquid Gold* is a beautiful golden shade, Pink To Make The Boys Wink* is a light pink shade (my favourite one!), Drama At The Disco* is black with flecks of rainbow shimmer and last but not least is Starlight*, a gorgeous silver shade. 

For my pink eye look, I used my Anastasia Modern Renaissance palette for some matte pink shadows as well as my inner corner highlight. I decided to go for a spotlight eye and I applied the pink glitter to the centre of my eyes. It was so quick and easy to do!

What are your favourite glitter eyeshadows?

Cliona xx

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An Autumnal Pair From The Body Shop

Sunday, 8 October 2017

The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Review

| An Autumnal Pair From The Body Shop! |

October seems to be whizzing by already and before we know it it'll be time for the spookiest day of the year! As we delve further into the month, the cold weather is starting to slowly creep upon us each day, and subsequentially, hydrating and enriching body-care products have become a staple in my beauty routine in order to prevent parched skin. 

Every year, The Body Shop creates amazing seasonal ranges and this year for Autumn/Halloween they've released some of their cult classics in a vanilla pumpkin scent. They've blended two quintessential autumn fragrances together, Madagascan vanilla and pumpkin, and added a dash of tonka bean, hazelnut, as well as maple syrup to create a rich indulgent scent that's reminiscent of homebaked Autumn treats.

Pumpkin is an acquired scent on its own as it's quite strong but the perfect blend of sweet and nutty fragrances in this range tones down the scent. The vanilla is the strongest note and as I rub the products onto my hands and body I can detect a whiff of pumpkin as well as maple syrup. The Body Shop always get scents right and if you like anything vanilla scented then you will definitely love this! 

The body shop vanilla pumpkin hand cream review

My hands always suffer from the harsh elements of Autumn/Winter so I've been loving the vanilla pumpkin hand cream* recently to banish dry patches and replenish my hands. The formula is non-greasy and sinks in quickly which means I can carry on with any tasks I'm doing straight after applying it instead of waiting for it to dry. For the first few days I was applying it twice a day but now I'm getting 24-hour hydration from it. It costs €6.50 and it would be a great stocking filler *wink wink*

Another hydrating hero I've been reaching for is the vanilla pumpkin body butter*. The formula of the body butters is much thicker and creamier compared to the lightweight gel texture of the hand creams. But the cream still dries very quickly and a little bit goes a long way so they usually don't run out quickly. I find the scent of the body butter lasts long and I can smell the delicious scent throughout the day. My skin can be quite sensitive at times, I'm not even able to use any of the Lush shower gels as they give me a reaction but I've used these body butters for years without any problems and this fragrance is no different.

Have you tried anything from the Vanilla Pumpkin range?
What's your favourite range from The Body Shop?

Cliona xx

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*Products marked with an asterisk have been sent to me from a brand.

Autumnal Lipstick & Nail Polish Favourites

Friday, 6 October 2017

Autumn Lipsticks & Nail Polishes

| Autumnal Lipstick & Nail Polish Favourites! |

Another instalment of my Autumn makeup favourites is coming your way today and this time it's all about the lips and tips. Expect to find an abundance of rich burgundy hues, some deep nudes as well as a pop of red in my stash of autumnal lipstick and nail polish favourites.

An Autumn favourite that I wait patiently all year to crack out is my trusty Rimmel 107 lipstick, a deep burgundy colour with red undertones. I would describe it as the epitome of Autumn and the creamy matte formula lasts quite well whilst feeling comfortable on the lips. I usually pair this in the classic way with glistening gold eyeshadow for all the cosy Autumnal vibes.

If you're in a daring mood then Nars Cruella is another bold option for Autumn. The pencil applicator allows for precise application, avoiding any red smudges around the lips, and the matte formula is long-lasting and doesn't bleed. 

During Autumn I tend to reach for deeper nude hues, Silk Rose by Rosie for Autograph being one of my favourites. The dark rosy nude shade complements a burgundy or copper eye look and the cream-sheen formula feels lightweight and hydrating on the lips. 

Another nude favourite that has stood the test of time in my makeup collection is the Revlon Colourburst Matte Balm in Elusive, a pretty rose pink shade. The cool-toned hue is perfect for the colder weather and the minty scent smells delicious! However, this won't be in my makeup bag this year because after swatching the lipstick I found a tiny speck of mould on it so I had to throw it out *insert crying emoji* This is what happens when you're a lipstick hoarder, haha!

I'll also be reaching for a new favourite this season, the Fatal Muse liquid matte lipstick in no.730 Confession* from L.O.V Cosmetics. This liquid lipstick provides great staying power without compromising on comfort as the velvety, mousse-like formula is non-drying much like the NYX soft matte lip creams. 

Autumn lipsticks
Lipstick Swatches L to R: Nars Cruella // Rosie for Autograph Silk Rose // Rimmel 107 // Revlon Elusive // L.O.V Cosmetics Confession

My first nail polish favourite is a muted nude option; Essie Eternal Optimist is a gorgeous nude pink shade but the deeper rosy undertones make it the perfect Autumn nude shade. 

In Stitches is a little bit more festive for the cosy season as the reddish-brown shade mirrors the brown leaves flitting down from the trees.

Chinchilly is a cool grey hue to match the grey clouds and rainy weather! As you can imagine the shade is quite dull so to perk it up I usually add a sparkly accent nail. The polish is opaque in two coats and lasts a few days before the first signs of chipping.

It's Genius is my favourite Autumn shade! Not only is it a rich burgundy hue but it also has tiny flecks of shimmer in it which adds a little bit of detail to the nails. 

What are your favourite Autumnal lipsticks and nail polishes?

Cliona xx

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*Products marked with an asterisk have been sent to me from a brand or PR company.

Everyday Makeup Menu; The Autumn Edition

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Autumn college makeup routine

| Everyday Makeup Menu; The Autumn Edition! |

Having a quick makeup routine is a vital component to surviving early mornings *wink wink* and over the years I've managed to cut my getting ready time in half. Applying my makeup was always the longest part of my morning routine but using these quick and easy products allows me to get ready in a few minutes.

My makeup routine begins with one of my favourite budget foundations, L'Oreal True Match. I always gravitate towards foundations that have a satin finish on an everyday basis as they make my skin look healthy and rejuvenated. This budget gem provides exactly that and the formula is quick and easy to blend, speeding up my makeup routine.

Concealer is a must-have on early mornings and the Seventeen Skin Wow concealer has been residing in my makeup bag recently. The creamy, moisturising formula is perfect for my dry skin, the finish is dewy, adding luminosity to my dark under-eye area and once the concealer is set with powder it lasts for hours.

I couldn't go a day without bronzer, it has the ability to transform my complexion from looking ghostly to looking healthy by adding some warmth to the face. For everyday wear, I usually reach for my Becca Sunlit bronzer as it looks subtle which is perfect for my College makeup look.

Another product to perk up my complexion during the dreary A/W months is my Hourglass blush in Diffused Heat. This vibrant coral pink hue adds subtle radiance to my cheeks which helps beat lacklustre skin that normally arises during the colder seasons. 

One can never have enough radiance in my opinion so I also like to sweep some of The Balm Mary-Lou Manizer onto the cheekbones and on the brow bone for some extra glow. 

Essence brushes

Good quality makeup needs a good set of tools to apply it with and I've been trying out some new launches from Essence. The brand is one of my top budget brands and they always release swoon-worthy limited edition collections. For their latest trend edition, they've released an abundance of beautiful brushes. I've been using the blush & draping brush* for applying a pop of blush to my cheeks. The round shape of the brush is ideal for precision blush application and it's also great for applying powder under the eyes. I've also been loving the contouring brush* to apply a subtle contour for everyday wear using my Charlotte Tilbury palette. Both of the brushes feel very soft and luxurious, and I can't believe they're only €4.10 each! *Runs to Penneys to buy the rest of the collection*

For the eyes, I usually opt for eyeshadows that can be worn on their own for a quick and effortless look. Matte browns are ideal for blending out all over the eye to add some definition and recently I've been reaching for my Urban Decay Ultimate Basics palette. This all-matte palette has some great shades in it that can be worn alone and the formula is easy to blend, meaning I can have my eyeshadow applied in 30 seconds. 

To finish off my eyes, I apply a little bit of the L'Oreal Paradise mascara, the Soap & Glory Brow Archery pencil to fill in my brows and finally I complete the look with Mac Brave lipstick.

What are your everyday makeup essentials?

Cliona xx

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*Products marked with asterisk have been sent to me from a brand or PR company.

Testing L.O.V Products

Sunday, 1 October 2017

L.O.V Makeup Review

| Testing L.O.V Products! |

My favourite thing about blogging is discovering new brands and one that has come onto my radar in the last few months is L.O.V Cosmetics. The brand offers good quality products with an affordable price tag. Lots of people have been raving about the brand recently and it's easy to see why! From a dreamy liquid highlighter to an Autumnal nail polish hue to a long-wearing liquid lipstick, here are a few products I've been trialling from L.O.V Cosmetics. 

My favourite product from the range is the LOVglow highlighting drops in No. 20 Sunlight Glow*, a golden champagne hue that provides a natural dewy finish to the skin. It doesn't contain any sparkle in it so it's an ideal product for my everyday makeup bag! This liquid highlighter is housed in swoon-worthy gold packaging and it comes with a pipette dispenser which makes it easy to dispense the right amount of product. I've been applying it different ways from mixing a few drops into a matte or satin foundation to add radiance to my complexion, as well as dabbing a small amount onto my cheekbones, cupid's bow and down the centre of my nose to achieve that lit-from-within glow. It can also be worn underneath a powder highlighter to make it pop even more, making it ideal for transitioning your makeup from day to night - A handy one to have come party season at the end of the year!

My next favourite from the brand is their lip affair colour & care lip pencil in no. 502* which is a classic "my lips but better" nude shade that compliments most nude lipstick hues. It comes with a lip brush on the other end that's handy for blending lip liner and lipstick together for a seamless finish. The longevity is the most impressive component of the liner as it lasted for the majority of the day. I've been pairing it with the liquid lipstick from the brand (more on that in a minute!) as well as my favourite everyday lipstick - Mac Modesty - for College days. I usually apply the liner all over my lips and then apply Modesty on top. The lipstick isn't very long-lasting due to the cream-sheen formula but as the lipstick wore off, the liner was still there so I don't have to worry about topping up my lipstick in the middle of lectures.  

Another great lip discovery from the brand is their Fatal Muse liquid matte lipstick in no.730 Confession*. If you're a fan of the soft matte lip creams from NYX then you'll love this! Similarly to the NYX version, the velvety formula and mousse-like texture makes it comfortable to wear and non-drying. The lipstick lasted very well on me, it would usually start to break down after about 6 hours but it faded evenly so I got away with not reapplying it as I'm usually home by then. Although the lip liner isn't a perfect match for the lipstick shade, I was still able to pair the two together because the liner shade is so close to my natural lip colour. They're a great long-lasting duo that will remain in my makeup bag for the foreseeable future! 

L.O.V highlighting drops review
L.O.V makeup review

Most days I'm rushing to head out the door so I need quick and convenient products in my everyday makeup bag. Enter the LOV Iconyx eyeshadow palette* which contains five satin eyeshadows. The three neutral shades look beautiful swiped onto the lid on their own and it creates a simple look in a few seconds - Perfect for those early morning starts! The formula of the eyeshadows are silky soft and they have good pigmentation. The shades include a deep forest green, a paler green hue, a white highlight shade, a deep champagne nude and a chocolate brown. 

I've also been testing out their Eyettraction Magnetic Loose Eyeshadow in no. 560 Metallure*. This eyeshadow has an interesting and unique formula that I've never come across before. It has a very soft texture and it can be worn wet or dry but in my opinion, this particular shade looks better when applied with a wet brush. Using a wet brush to apply it creates the most beautiful foil effect! I would describe the shade as a dark silvery grey with deep purple undertones. I think it looks beautiful paired with matte purple shades to create a vampy look that's perfect for the A/W months! 

The RoyaLiner eyeliner pen in no. 110 Grey Allure* can also be found in my makeup bag at the moment. The dark slate grey shade is something a bit different and it's nice for everyday wear as it's not as intense as a black eyeliner. The eyeliner has been holding up well during the day, no smudging or fading and it looked the exact same when I went to take it off in the evening as it did when I first applied it in the morning. The fine nib makes it easy to create the perfect line along the top lash line as well as creating a flick that we all know and love!

And last but not least, the LOVinity long-lasting nail lacquer in no. 210 Alluring Amethyst* has been my nail polish of choice recently. The rich burgundy shade is a quintessential Autumn hue and the flat wide brush allows for a smooth and easy application. The formula is non-streaky and I could get away with one coat but two coats makes the shade richer and more vibrant. 

Have you tried any products from this brand?

Cliona xx

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*Products marked with an asterisk have been sent to me from a brand or PR company.
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