Thursday, 19 September 2013

Bourjois Healthy Mix Collection

When I was 13 and started wearing make-up I tried every single drugstore foundation I could find. It suited my budget and back then I hadn't a clue about make-up so would lash anything on if I thought it might hide my face. I think my very first foundation was Rimmel Stay Matte, and was about 5 shades too dark for my pale skin. Embarrassingly, I still wore it (any pictures of that time have been banished forever, unfortunately). I hated the stuff. My face would be a horrible, shiny, orange mess by the time I would arrive home after school. I continued trying out brand after brand, going from Essence to Loreal to Maybelline to Revlon and at one desperate stage, I tried the MaxFactor Pan Stick.

It was probably about 2 years later that I finally managed to build up my savings to purchase my first ever high-end foundation. I had done a little bit of research but eventually settled on a MAC foundation. I found out the hard way that me and MAC foundations do not get along. I eventually stumbled upon a YouTube video that introduced me to Estee Lauder Double Wear and I have been a devoted lover of it since. However, f you have read my very first post, you will know that mine and Estee's relationship has come to an end and so my foundation journey continues.

I picked up the Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum and the Healthy Mix Foundation about a year ago. I was definitely sceptical as I had such a bad experience with drugstore foundations before. To be totally honest, I didn't give these foundations a chance. I applied them both once and realised they would never compare to Double Wear in terms of coverage and staying power so I chucked them in a drawer and forgot about them. I really regret that now.

Bourjois have created an absolutely beautiful product, in both the serum formula and the original foundation. I think this collection has been the most talked about/blogged about drugstore product EVER, with very good reason. I decided to try these out when I became sick of the "mask" effect I was getting from heavier foundations. I obviously wanted to cover my imperfections and acne but for the little bit of skin that was decent, I wanted to let it shine through.

These foundations do exactly that;

 They provide buildable coverage. In my opinion, the original HM Foundation gives more of a medium coverage while the HM Serum is slightly lighter, so perfect for those who have only a small bit of pigmentation to cover. At the moment, I am using the original foundation paired with my Collection concealer and it is a match made in heaven. It literally covers everything, and trust me, I have a LOT to cover.

They provide a healthy complexion. These foundations are very much true to their name. They bring a perfect radiance to the face, giving a dewy, healthy and natural effect. I find the Original to be more of a semi-matte finish, (perfect for oily skin) and the Serum to be more of a dewy finish (perfect for dry skin). The foundation can thank its fruity ingredients for this effect, mainly the Apricot for providing the radiant glow.

They are extremely light on the skin. So you won't feel it heavy and wont think "my skin can't breathe" while wearing it. Once its on, it really doesn't feel like you are wearing anything at all. I think its always best to apply a heavy duty concealer to pinpoint the areas where you need coverage and then leave the rest of the skin to just the foundation. It will look a lot more natural and always remember, less is definitely more.

This foundation is the perfect daytime foundation however, I have yet to use it on a night out. Personally I prefer a slightly heavier foundation for these occasions as I want my skin to be completely flawless and I also want to know my foundation won't be sliding all over the place after a night of dancing. This is where the Bourjois Healthy Mix has slightly let itself down. It definitely does not live up to the "16 hour wear" claim. I would say at a push it lasts 8 hours, which isn't bad at all for a foundation that is less than 20euro (I think its around 15euro).

I also picked up the concealer that matches the foundation, expecting it to be just as good. Honestly, I didn't like it that much. It did the job but not as good as the Collection concealer did, and it's a few quid cheaper. I made the mistake of grabbing the first shade I saw, thinking it looked about right but coming home to find it was a shade darker than the foundation. Which doesn't really work as concealer is meant to disguise things, not bring them to attention by being darker. Maybe this is the reason why I didn't enjoy it as much as I should have. Also, it would definitely be more of an "under eye concealer" than a spot cover up.

Let me know if you have tried this foundation, although I think almost everyone has.
Did you find it good/bad/only alright?
And what is your current foundation? I'd love to hear so I can try them all out!

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Linda's FOTD

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My friends are used to me begging to do their make-up whenever they have a big occasion coming up. I have done my best friend Linda's make-up loads of times and absolutely love it. She has the most perfect face. 

This time, she was heading off to a wedding and needed something to compliment a black dress with red accessories. Although I would have loved to have added a red lip to this look, I knew it would have been too much along with the shoes and the bag. We eventually settled on a simple gold/brown smokey eye after trying out a really dark black smokey eye. This look obviously wasn't very wedding appropriate, or good for day time but Linda has promised me I can steal her face again to post a tutorial of it on here. It would be perfect for a night out. 

This make-up took barely any time to apply as I didn't need to use many products at all. Linda also has flawless skin so I didn't spend ages trying to cover up imperfections.  I also didn't need to spend time perfecting Linda's brows as they are so full and thick (how lucky is she!). 

The list of products I used on Linda;

MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation
Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer
Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder
Benefit Hoola Bronzer
Benefit Dandelion Blusher
Urban Decay Naked Palette; Naked, Buck, Half-Baked 
Urban Decay Basics Palette; Venus, Foxy, Faint, Crave
Benefit Bad Gal Mascara
Maybelline The Falsies "Flared" Mascara

We had to use Linda's iPhone to take pictures of the make-up instead of my usual camera as we were in a rush to leave. Apologies for the quality of the pics. The gold shimmer eye-shadow was a lot more noticeable and intense in person!

Find Linda @savageisland_

The Best Make-Up Brushes?

This was a requested post and I had absolutely no idea how to approach it. 

What are the best make-up brushes available at the moment? And do they compare to their price? In the last number of years there have been so many new companies with fantastic quality brushes, and many with extremely reasonable price tags too. 

I'l start the post off by showing you all of my make-up brushes. I have a mixture of expensive brushes and not as expensive brushes ranging from Mac, Clinique, Benefit and Urban Decay to Real Techniques and even cheap "no brand" brushes that I use daily and have done for the last year. My collection is small and I have been dying to expand it, starting with adding more blending brushes as I really want to improve the look of my smokey eye look and feel it is definitely down to the brush used.

My little collection of brushes.

Now, onto the recommended brushes. I wanted to try and find the most affordable, but still good quality brushes, as I certainly don't have a huge budget at the moment.

Blank Canvas Cosmetics 
The first company, that has gotten great feedback is Blank Canvas Cosmetics, an Irish brand. I'v been going through their website in preparation for this post and their brushes look incredible, with prices as low as 6.99 for a blending brush. One of their products I'v heard the most about is the Double Ended Eyebrush Set. This comes with 5 items, so basically 10 brushes, that are great quality and more than enough brushes for any eye look. It is priced at 64.99, which may seem like a lot of money at first but you are getting 10 brushes so in my opinion, it's a fair price.

Another Irish brand that I'v heard about in the last year is Nima Brushes. Unfortunately I have no brushes of theirs yet, but the reviews I have come across have all been great. You can pick up a 7 piece essential brush set for 65euro which is perfect for a starter kit and includes a really handy cylinder holder. It contains a powder brush, a blush brush, a duo fibre foundation brush (which I highly recommend), a concealer brush, a small angle brush, a crease brush, a pencil brush and an eyeliner brush. Pretty much everything you need for the entire face. If your budget is slightly higher there is a 12 piece professional brush set for 90euro, amazing price for the amount of brushes you receive.

Zoeva, a German company, have always stood out to me as being really good quality with the best prices I have seen so far. Their Eye Definition Set contains 6 synthetic bristle brushes for 20euro. There is a shader, precise shader, smudger, crease, pencil and fine liner brush included and what I love the most about this, they are all Vegan. This set is at the top of my current wishlist and I can't wait to get my hands on it.

Crown Brushes
It wasn't until recently that I came across Crown Brushes. These are marketed at professional use but with trade prices, which is pretty fair. I was really excited to have a stalk of their website and was so surprised at their prices. The Stiff Tapered Crease brush that I have been longing for is under 4euro and is one of their best selling products. When I can, I will definitely be buying these in bulk as you always need multiple crease/blending brushes when doing make-up, especially if you are an actual make-up artist. Their brush sets seem to be equally good value, with the 7 Piece HD Set catching my eye instantly. This set contains 6 Nylon bristle brushes with a double sided spatula and a metal mixing palette for under 38euro. 

Real Techniques
The last company I recommend is Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman. I actually own a lot of these brushes and can honestly say, they are fantastic. I own the Core Collection Set, the Starter Set for Eyes and the Stippling Brush. I wouldn't be without the Contour brush and the Buffing brush included in the Core Collection. These are so ideal for a perfect flawless base. In the Starter Set, I only really use 3 of the 5 brushes; the Base Shadow, the Deluxe Crease (perfect for blending under eye concealer) and the Accent brush, which I use for highlighting in the tear duct area of the eye. I will definitely do a full review on these brushes if anyone is interested. They are available to buy in Boots Pharmacies, however I would recommend checking out Cloud10Beauty because they are slightly cheaper to purchase there, and they are often on sale.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

How I Remove My Make-Up (Face & Eyes)

I used to be that person that used make-up "remover" wipes everyday. Nothing else.

And I wonder why I had bad skin?

I was hooked on the Boots own brand cucumber scented ones, they were cheap and I assumed they did the job. I was very wrong. These things, like pretty much all make-up removal wipes, are pure shite.

They were good for absolutely nothing, and I used them for YEARS. 

Eventually I copped on that this wasn't the correct way to remove make-up and it wasn't the correct way to care for my skin.

I moved onto cleansing lotions, which I personally love. They are grand for doing the job and depending obviously on what brand you go for, they are reasonably priced too.

The one I use is Garnier Soothing Cleansing Lotion. Its about 4euro and the bottle will last ages. I found that using this and a face clothe would remove even Estee Lauder Double Wear and other extremely heavy bases. After I remove all my make-up I go and "double cleanse" with whatever face-wash I'm testing out at that time. 

For eye make-up I use Johnson's Baby Oil (3euro) poured onto a little cotton pad and gently swipe this over my eye area. I tend to need about two cotton pads per eye, especially if I'm wearing a smokey eye look. This stuff is incredible. It doesnt leave a trace of make-up, including waterproof mascara. I mentioned in my last post that it even manages to get rid of gel eyeliner which is almost impossible. Apparently Johnson's Baby Oil also helps to make your eyelashes healthy and longer so it really is a perfect product.

UPDATE- Clodagh on Instagram (follow her @cloclokerface) has told me that Johnson's Baby Oil can cause irritation to the eyes after continued use and overuse, so using too much for one go. Thanks a million for this Clodagh, as I wasn't aware of this at all! Personally the oil doesn't irritate me but I must stress that I do only use about 2-3 drops per cotton pad. Definitely be wary though, as everyone can react differently. 

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Gel Eyeliner - Catrice

This is a really really quick post but I wanted to review the Catrice gel eyeliner as I have had it for way over a year now and wouldn't be without it.

This is a seriously good product for the price.

With the Catrice double ended liner brush

       It costs around 3euro and compares to MAC's Fluidline in "Blacktrack" and the slightly                                                                             cheaper Maybelline one.

It is very long lasting. 

When I wake up after a night out it is still very much intact on my horrendous hungover face. It is so long lasting that I found it impossible to remove until I discovered baby oil (I will post a full make-up removal post soon).

Kind of gross, I need to replace it

Pure black pigment, extremely opaque which is fantastic for such a cheap product.

And finally the most important thing: it is a dream to apply. Incredibly smooth and so easy to work with.

I like to apply it with the double ended liner brush, also by Catrice and also costing around 3euro.

I think this also comes in a brown shade which I assume is every bit as good as the black.