Joan Collins Timeless Beauty

I still remember receiving my very first make up palates from my Aunty Chris. I think I was 14 and I got three perfectly beautiful pallets from Marks & Spencer. They were mine all mine and I coveted them as though they were the crown jewels. If I look hard enough in my old bedroom which is back to being the storage room I’m sure I would find these empty golden gifts.

Receiving that makeup made me feel so grown up, no more stealing mams (that didn’t last long of course). Fast forward almost three decades and I still feel special when I get new makeup. So whilst mooching around in Marks & Spencer’s beauty hall, which is an absolute must I must say as there are so many testers but there aren’t any of those assistants to turn your huge effort that you went to this morning seemingly pale to insignificance with their perfectly applied makeup.

There are 36 brands in place at M&S and I selected one of them to try; Joan Collins an icon if ever there was one. Strangely the year I got my first makeup was the last year Dynasty was produced but Joan seems not to have aged and Alexis Colby, will forever be etched in my memory.

The range by Dame Joan Collins who is 83 is named Joan Collins Timeless Beauty. Oh lordy if I look like her at 63 I’d be very happy. I tried out the foundation, concealer and a lip and powder compact. The packaging screams Hollywood glamour but will the contents live up to the look?

Fade to perfect concealer; Currently I suffer from puffy dark eyes so it was good to read that this concealer is to aid the reduction of dark circles, soothe irritation and calm puffiness around the eyes. This indeed worked to a point but I by no means expect miracles. This concealer comes in three shades; fair, medium and dark and I tried out fair which worked for me. I use concealer before and after foundation so I do go through quite a lot so will need to consider a repeat purchase as it is £18.

First base foundation; I go between powder and cream foundation for day and night. Cream is most definitely my go to evening foundation. First Base is said to be youth promoting skincare and a foundation in one. The finish is lovely, quite natural and breathable but the tingle I get from what I presume is the hyaluronic acid is a little disconcerting. Despite the tingle first base has never left my skin reddened and the tingles do die down. This comes in eight shades and is £25 it would be difficult to choose between this and Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Foundation.

I liked the coverage and the dewiness on my skin on my dry skin days though it did stick to the pores so more exfoliation needed for me.

Lipstick and powder compact duo; This is one of those products I like to flash as it looks so good. The opulent packaging is distinctive. Top tip: project it in your makeup bag as it does scratch easily.

I chose Katrina which is quite a deep brown shade. The lippy glides onto the lips and leave them instantly moisturised. I do wish I’d picked a lighter shade as this is one for an evening but the formula is so lovely I want to use it all of the time.

Katrina is combined with pressed powder and a mirror both of which have become a god send as recently the tip of my nose seems always to be red and the powder helps to combat it. I love the fact that you can marry any of the 16 shades of lipsticks with the compact. I think Marilyn will be my next choice and the lip stick retails at £18.

I’ve already chosen to try out Rosie for Autograph on my next Marks & Spencer visit. .

 

 

 

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty items were gifted for review purposes but all opinions are our own.

Make Up Galle

Let’s not beat around the beauty bush. This Make Up Gallery range is cheap.

Each item was £1. It has to be, it’s from Poundland.

The reason I bought it was to try a blue eyeliner without wasting a lot of money on something I didn’t know if I’d have the confidence to wear. And, because I wanted a matt bronzer.

So I bought it, played with it, love it.

The bronzer is a little talc-tastic, I can definitely feel it if I’ve used too much. But the shade is lovely, it evens out my skin and doesn’t make me look like a glitter ball (I’ve found the highlighters actually make my laughter lines more noticeable) so it’s perfect for day use. The blusher is a coral shade, not my norm, but it stays put and is lovely on my summer skin tone.

Nic blue eyeliner

Nic x

 

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So I popped into the Kiko Cosmetics store in Eldon Square the other day because they had a sale on. I am easily swayed and this was my second visit.

On the hunt for nail varnish remover, I was distracted by lip scrubs, cream blusher, eyebrow fibres and finally owning some cleanser that would remove their eye-liner.

*Note to self: DO NOT waste ££s on cleanser or raid Suzanne’s multitude of stock but buy the product that’s designed to compliment, it saves a whole load of time and effort.

Kiko Cosmetics are such an inexpensive brand but really are rather good. Of the products on show, I particularly love the Rebel Bouncy Blush. Using fingers to apply, the coverage is great, natural and lasts all day. The case is very pretty and with 50 percent off it was £4.90*.

The Power Pro nail lacquer is almost gel-like in appearance and the wide brush means you cover all your nail in one go. I love neutral colours and this is lovely for work.

The eyebrow fibres fill in missing spaces and set your brows. Be careful not to get too vigorous with your application or you’ll end up with streaks up your forehead!

Scrubbing my lips for the first time was really weird. I didn’t enjoy it and used too much product so my lips were sore. The second time was better; just use a little bit and don’t over-rub. And use some lip balm afterwards. I’ll definitely only need to do it once a week.

All in all Kiko you lured me in due to your sale but you’ve now gained a repeat customer, now isn’t that what every brand wants?

Nicola xx

*Prices correct  February 2016

Nicola's Murad skin analysis

Murad Skincare. Heard of them? No, I hadn’t either until we attended the Murad event launching this new-to-us beauty brand in House of Fraser at the Metro Centre, Gateshead.

First things first, there were lots of the usual claims pronouncing the actual and real difference these products would make to our skin. (I’m jaded. I need skincare evidence).

Keeping an open mind, it was a good start learning that the products were developed by Dr Murad, a dermatologist, for his clients as a direct response to their individual skincare needs.

Having my skin analysed via the Murad Youthcam, I was told it was in pretty good shape, great to hear given all the sunbeds and excessive sun bathing of my youth.

The analysis gives a glimpse into the future, projecting what my skin might look like in 5 – 10 years time if I did nothing to protect it. It wasn’t that much of a surprise, in ten years time I’ll be 50 and won’t look like a teenager. But it did make me consider a better beauty routine.

Murad Invisiblur Perfecting ShieldStep in the Murad Invisiblur Perfecting Shield. I’ve been using this product for about 2 months now and I absolutely adore it. The texture is gorgeous, it basically is a one-stop product to “replace your treatment, primer and SPF” whilst “immediately blurring and correcting whilst combating the signs of ageing”.

I always use it over my facial oil (once that has had some time to sink in) and I do notice a slight smoothing of the pores and the texture of my face.  Knowing it is SPF 30 is one of the best things about this product as I’ve always had trouble finding a nice moisturiser that doesn’t irritate my face with a high SPF factor.

But slight blurring and SPF aside, the thing that I really love most about Inivisiblur is that my make-up stays put all day long when I use it. It just seems to cling to my face and there’s no need for top ups throughout the day.

The product isn’t an everyday buy. At £55 it’s expensive compared to many high street brand products. But that’s the thing, it isn’t just another high street product that goes to waste. I use this everyday. I think I’ll get 4 months out of one tube, so at £12.50 per month (and saving money on not buying a primer and SPF moisuriser) it’s one I am definitely sticking with.

Nicola x

 

charlotte tilsbury make up

Charlotte Tilbury has worked hard to produce a make up range that women will love.

As a makeup artist immersed in the fashion and beauty industry for over 20 years she is always determined to look her best. And boy does she have some competition! Working in fashion must place an extra pressure to look great all the time.

Ladies, we all know the power of make-up. A late night, little sleep or stress can play havoc with our complexion, but the right make up can make up can still make us feel like super stars.

You only turn 40 once, and me and Suzanne have always loved the ‘getting ready’ bit of a night out as much as the actual event itself (who doesn’t love sitting with their best friend, chatting and sipping on a glass of fizz or two?).

We’d lusted over the Charlottle Tilbury range for many a month, so trialling these fab four items was the perfect start to Suzanne’s very special birthday.

Here’s what we thought.

Suzanne and Nicola x

Luxury Palette the Vintage Vamp

Colour-Coded Eyeshadows, £38.00

The blurb: “The Vintage Vamp, dresses for yourself but can’t help intoxicating others with just a glance. Your palette is deep and intense and you adore the richest, most beguiling colours from captivating crimsons to sumptuous rose golds. A veritable modern day Lauren Bacall, Louisa Brooks or Daisy Buchanan, with an obsession for all things antique gold and vintage treasures.

Each eyeshadow palette contains four harmonious colour ways that offer a complete ‘desk to disco’ eye colour wardrobe and an easy to use application ritual that is fail-safe to follow.”

What we thought:

Suz – Fabulously packaged. Needed some advice on how to get the desired look so  we used the online video tutorial . Lasted all day and night. Great staying power.

K.I.S.S.I.N.G Bitch Perfect

Fallen From The Lipstick Tree, £23.00

The blurb: “Enriched with a breakthrough, secret ingredient, the Lipstick Tree, an anti-oxidant that naturally protects lips from UV damage and external pollution leaving them cashmere soft and irresistible. Blended with special waxes and clever light-diffusing pigments for pert, full-bodied, ultra-brilliant lips that ensure you leave a lasting impression.

Paraben free, The Lip Stick Tree protects lips from UV damage and fighting oxidative stress and contains light-diffusing pigments that give lips a brilliant, luminous, multi-dimensional finish. The blend of waxes means this lipstick glides over the contours of your lips.”

What we thought:

Nic – I loved it so much, I bought another one so we didn’t have to share. That says it all!

Suz- You know that moment when you take your lipstick bullet out of your bag and hope that the woman next to you notices and wonders what that thing of beauty is? This lipstick has all the allure, of a luxury brand, glides on well and lasts.

Magic Foundation, shade 3

Flawless, Poreless, Long-Lasting Coverage, SPF15 £29.50

The blurb: “Magic Foundation is a miracle in a bottle that transforms skin for all ages, skin tones and skin types. It has a  “hyper-intelligent” formula that gives full-coverage yet feels completely weightless, with all the anti-ageing and protective benefits of a luxury skin cream. It conceals imperfections, glides on like a dream, and literally feels like a second skin. Whether your skin needs just a bit of perfecting, or you struggle with a frustrating issue like acne, melasma or rosacea, the Magic Foundation will give you a perfect looking skin day, every day!”

What we thought:

Suz- I used the online foundation finder  tool to establish my correct shading. Shade three is a neutral beige meant for light skin tones with cool undertones, and my shade of choice as it describes me accurately. It’s recommended that the foundation is applied with the ‘Magic Complexion Brush’ but it has a price tag of £45 so on this occasion it was finger tips.

Sofa Stories wearing Charlotte Tilsbury

Rock ‘n’ Kohl Bedroom Black

Iconic Liquid Eyeliner Pencil, £19.00

The blurb: “A revolutionary, no-nonsense liquid-eye pencil: it has the silky smooth glide of a liquid liner with the soft, sooty, pigment-rich result of a kohl. ROCK ‘N’ KOHL melts onto your skin for an easy, 1-slick line that blends then sets. It stays put for 14 hours, is waterproof, paraben and preservative free and contains crushed pearl powder, known to stimulate collagen production.”

What we thought…

Nic – Honestly, this is simply one of the best eyeliners, if not THE best, that I have ever used. It went on so easily that it actually freaked me out. After 25 years of warming kohl eyeliners up (normally by breathing on them) I couldn’t get used to how easy this was to use. And it’s so black! It’s definitely a night out eyeliner, I couldn’t rock it for work.

There’s no doubt that this product is now my go-to eyeliner. It is worth every penny and I’m on a mission to get the rest of the range. Fabulous.

Suz – I am a relative novice when it comes to eyeliner application as I’ve always been put off by Nicola breathing onto liners to make their application easier! When I saw how easy the application was I gave it a go. The shade is a little too black for me for everyday use, but it complimented the black and brooding leather look we were both rocking for our girlie birthday day.

What we can we say? We’re Charlotte Tilbury converts and now, loyal fans.