A plethora of eyebrow makeupIf someone took the time out to explain HD brows to me I still wouldn’t get them. There are going to be many girls who’ll look back at photos of their HD eyebrows in a few years time and ask why nobody stopped them.

Still, there’s nothing quite as ageing as narrow, patchy eyebrows that have suffered years of plucking. I can vividly remember advice from an old work colleague when I was in my 20’s and she was in her 40’s, imploring me not to over-pluck as “they just don’t grow back”.

My collection of eyebrow-enhancers seems to be growing at a fierce pace so I thought I’d share my positive and negatives for each product.

    1. Clear mascara. If you have enough eyebrow to shape, clear mascara is enough to keep them groomed all day. This Rimmel tube is available everywhere and is inexpensive, easy to use and effective. My most used eyebrow product.
    2. Eyebrow pencil. Cheap and easy to use. Fills in the spaces. The original eyebrow makeup. I find it a bit of a struggle getting the colour and tone to match and it does wear off (on me?) more quickly but I’ll admit to having eyebrow pencils in most of my bags for the ultimate quick touch up. Remember your sharpener.
    3. Kiko Eyebrow coloured mascara. Easy to use (short outward strokes) fills the gaps and shapes your brow at the same time. I’ve bought two separate shades but one is too red and the other not-quite-right. And I’ve been a little over zealous on a couple of occasions and needed some swift action with a cotton bud to sort out the mess!
    4. Benefit brows. Certainly the most expensive of the products in the image. But is has lasted an absolute age (the packing is completely different now). With a separate powder and wax, 2 little brushes and tweezers in a mirrored case this product is the closest in match to my eyebrow colour, and really does fill and shape. The wax is used after the powder to help it stay put. If you’re investing in something like this, visit the counter first and get someone to show you how.
    5. Stila All Day Waterproof Brow Colour. This is my new favourite. I was tempted to try it because it’s ‘waterproof’ and lasts ‘all day.’ As it’s a brush tip, the end result is natural and not overdone. I find it really easy to use and it does last without the need for top ups.

Stila waterproof brow colour

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

 

Using green CC cream to neutralise red

Me and my 40 year old face are doing just fine. I’m very comfortable with my happy lines. Smiling is just so good for you and everyone looking at you! So the happy lines can stay. But I’m not keen on the redness in my cheeks or those pesky brown spots.

I’ll admit to being late to the “Use Green To Tone Red” show. But anyway, I’m catching up now so I’m trialling some alternatives to see if the redness really does get masked. I’m not going to write about the science of the colour wheel and what colour product you need to cover what, as this fab blog at Behind The Scenes Makeup does that and frankly, I just want to know if if works (No Patience Nicola).

I have very specific red patches in my skin, with a couple of brown patches for good measure so I pondered (for all of one second) using this product all over my face. But you can only really tell by having a go, so using my foundation brush, I set to it.

I was fairly happy with the toning down; what do you think?

Once I’d recovered from the “ghostly shock” and blended the CC cream, the redness was definitely toned down and, an added bonus, it stayed put all day too. The coverage in the end was a little darker than the products I use normally, so it took a bit of blending but overall, I was really happy with the evenness of my entire face.

The product I tried was from the L’Oreal Nude Magique range. I’d definitely give it a 4/5 as the price isn’t off-putting at £9.99.

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

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.