Monday, 28 March 2016

MAC - Retro Matte lipstick in All Fired Up

Paying homage to the popularity of Ruby Woo, MAC launched a range purely dedicated to the Retro Matte finish which Ruby Woo possesses. 

Much more matte than the traditional finish, All Fired Up is a beautiful reddy pink that is bound to turn heads. 

I love this bright, vivacious colour because it really lifts your complexion. The colour which is much more a cool, bright pink than red is a happy colour that draws attention. The retro matte finish is very long lasting, non-transferable and makes your pout seem fuller than normal.

Retro mattes are much harder to put on and I know there are a lot of people who dislike Ruby Woo, but if you prep your lips with an absorbing lip balm like By Terry Baume de Rose or Evelom Kiss Mix, then this finish shouldn't be any trouble at all.

I'm not sure if this shade is still available as I bought it in 2015 under a limited edition range, but if it is, it's definitely a keeper.

Colour Intensity: high

Finish: matte

Overall Rating: 5/5 - because the colour is gorgeous and 12 hours since applying, it hasn't budged

You'll like this if: you want a bold colour that lasts all day

Perfect for: evenings out, with a winged eyeliner, Summer

Lancôme - Juicy Shaker in Apri-Cute

With a sweet smelling apricot scent, Apri-Cute from Lancome's Juicy Shaker collection is bound to be a favourite. 

The pretty oil-infused colour is an ideal shade for Spring, and the moisturising quality is the cherry on top. 

Lancôme have combined their original Cocktail Shaker lipstick from the 40s with the ultra glossy Juicy Tubes of the 90s to create an ultra plush gloss and colour combo.

You have to shake these well before using in order to mix the oil and the pigment together, and then dab the sponge nib on your lips. 

You can either layer a light colour, or keep dabbing to build it up to a stronger look. What's great is that you can mix and match the colours and scents to have a lip cocktail that's perfect for you.

Out of the three shades I have, Apri-Cute is my favourite. The colour doesn't bleed outside the lip line and the orange is so deliciously Spring-like that I think it will be my favourite gloss this season. 

Colour Intensity: low

Finish: glossy / high shine

Overall Rating: 4/5

You'll like this if: you want a pretty shade for Spring 

Perfect for: weekends, picnics, Summer frolics...

Sunday, 27 March 2016

MAC - Matte lipstick in Velvet Teddy

For those who follow blogs and vlogs, you would know about Velvet Teddy and how it has had a mass cult following ever since Kylie Jenner's famous lips took to the limelight. 

If you're not a fan of the Ruby Woo style finish, you probably won't like this very much, but I have to say that despite having a collection of over 300 lipsticks, my favourite mattes are definitely by MAC.

Velvet Teddy is a beautiful soft brown. Full of intense pigment, it layers your lips with a gorgeous shade that will suit most skin tones - which is probably why it's so popular. 

It's a signature colour that you would purchase over and over again because it's incredibly flattering and very wearable. Matte finishes always make me feel like my pout is much more prominent, and Velvet Teddy is an ideal everyday shade. 

I wore this with Topshop's lip liner in Ceramic and the duo are the perfect partners in crime for this look.

Velvet Teddy is neutral toned, so if you struggle to find a similar matte shade for your skin tone, this one will not fail you.

Colour Intensity: medium

Finish: matte

Overall Rating: 5/5

You'll like this if: you want to channel Kylie Jenner

Perfect for: statement natural lip look, every day, first dates 

Saturday, 26 March 2016

NYX - Soft Matte Lip Cream in Sydney

It seems that whenever I watch a beauty vlog or scroll through blogs, NYX lip creams always make an appearance. Having never owned one, I decided to see what all the fuss is about.

Firstly, the price. At only £5.50 it's no wonder that NYX has cultivated such a huge following, and the huge colour collection definitely helps. I'm actually surprised with myself that it's taken so long to try this out.

The first colour I chose is called Sydney. Named after the beautiful Australian city, Sydney is a staple pink shade that you can get away wearing every day. If you are looking particularly sallow, or have warmer undertones to your skin, I would steer clear of this colour. Sydney is more of a blue pink so it will really draw focus if it's not against a cool or neutral base.

The texture is an interesting one. As you swirl the wand in the tube to pick up the colour, what surfaces is like a soufflé. I really like this because it makes you feel like you're loading your lips with colour.

It also glides on really well, very few smudges and most importantly does not bleed onto the outside of the lips, which some lip creams do. It also dries very quickly without feeling uncomfortable. 

I wouldn't say this is a favourite shade of mine, but it is something I would probably wear more often with the right make-up look.

Colour Intensity: medium

Finish: matte

Overall Rating: 3/5

You'll like this if: you want an affordable, long-lasting lip cream in a pretty, girly shade

Perfect for: many different occasions. Try wearing it with Tanya Burr's Princess eye make-up palette and a subtle blush like Nars' Sex Appeal Blush.

Friday, 25 March 2016

Lancôme - Juicy Shaker in Mint To Be

You've got to love a new innovation in lip products. For us lipstick lovers it's like a new iPhone coming out that does something completely different to your last one. You may not necessarily queue overnight to get your hands on it, but you will show it to everyone until they want to throw it (and you) across the room.

If you're a child of the 90's and the 00's you would surely remember the Lancôme Juicy Tubes, right? I remember back in 2004 when my friends and I would congratulate each other as soon as we announced we had purchased a Juicy Tube (lip glosses were big discussion topics back then). For a young teen, this was a monumentous occasion as it was the first lip gloss you would have that didn't come from Bliss magazine.

Roll on to the age of 27 and Lancôme have released the Juicy Shaker - a beautiful love child of the Lancôme 1945 cocktail shaker lipstick and the signature Juicy Tubes. 

Mint To Be is probably not the best colour to promote this on, but Juicy Shakers promise the gloss and moisturising ability of lip glosses, but with colour of a lipstick.

I grabbed Mint To Be because it's limited edition and it has been a while (since that free lipgloss in Bliss magazine) since I have owned a truly clear lipgloss. 

You begin with shaking it to mix the colour and the oil together, and then unscrew the top and gently dab the coloured soaked sponge nib on your lips. The other colours can be built up for something stronger, making this a very versatile lip tool. If you're feeling truly daring, you can even mix different Juicy Shakers to get unique colours. Each has a specific fragrance so you can create your very own fruity lip cocktail.

Mint To Be smells gorgeous - a soft menthol fragrance that leaves a little tingle on your lips. It also contains an iridescent sheen so it does trace your lips with subtle glimmer.

This isn't one for colour lovers, but if you want a lip gloss that softens your lips, this oil-infused, non-greasy make-up wonder is ideal.

Only downfall is that it doesn't last very long, but that's expected from a gloss.

Colour Intensity: well, none! 

Finish: glossy with a menthol kick

Overall Rating: 4/5 - it does exactly what it says in the tin. You shake it, and it smells juicy.

You'll like this if: you're a minimalist with expensive taste

Perfect for: every day

Monday, 21 March 2016

NudeStix in Belle

As matte has conquered every aspect of today's world from lipsticks to wall paint to car finishes, no one seems to be making a big deal of the nude/natural matte lipstick shades. Sure, Kylie Jenner has caused a massive stir with her collection but she usually goes for browns rather than barely there colours, so I thought I'd make a fuss of NudeStix's Belle.

I have mentioned that NudeStix launched a matte collection when I reviewed Stiletto, but on my latest trip to Space NK, I thought I would choose something from their paler tones. After much deliberation, I chose Belle - a cool pinky nude.

I have been a big fan of NudeStix for a while as despite being around £24, each stick comes with a mirrored tin and a sharpener lid. Plus the fact that they look and feel amazing, NudeStix have always been worth their price tag.

Belle is my ideal nude so it may not be for all readers. It has a pink base which livens up a complexion while not being overpowering. 

You can use the pencil to outline your lips before filling in with the shade, and despite having a matte finish, the formula is incredibly comfortable. It's blendable so when you rub your lips together it still feels moisturising. It probably doesn't last as long as the pure opaque mattes, but it does a darn good job at it. 

Colour Intensity: low

Finish: semi matte

Overall Rating: 5/5

You'll like this if: you have a fair, cool skin tone and want to try NudeStix for the first time 

Perfect for: all occasions

Sunday, 20 March 2016

Sleek - Matte Me lip cream in Fandango Purple

Matte lip creams are hard to avoid at the moment. This trend has become very popular as we keep on searching for a long-lasting bold lip.

Sleek are no exception and this beautiful, party purple attracted me instantly.

I love the cuboid packaging as it makes this instantly much more premium when you take it out of your handbag.

In terms of punchy colour, Sleek Matte Me does not disappoint. The shade is vivid and bright and doesn't need much applying. After a few soconds, the cream formula turns to a matte finish with zero transfer, which is fab.

However, I found the applicator tip really difficult to use. It's rigid with no flexibility so you're just dragging it around on your lips. Also, even though it has a quick drying effect, the end result is very drying and uncomfortable. 

Despite all this, Fandango Purple is still worth its affordable price tag if all you need is a powerful purple.

Colour Intensity: high

Finish: very matte

Overall Rating: 2/5

You'll like this if: you want a no transfer, matte lip cream 

Perfect for: evenings out, bold statement 

Saturday, 19 March 2016

Lipstick Queen Sinner lipstick in Pinky Nude

I'm a little delayed in writing this post, but Day 3 of my Nude Weekend ;-) led me to one of my favourite brands of all times - Lipstick Queen. 

If you're not familiar, Lipstick Queen's main lipsticks are split into two alter egos and you can choose from the Saint range or the Sinner range. They both have identical colours but the Saints have 10% pigment and are gloriously moisturising and shiny. The Sinners hold 90% pigment with striking colour and a long lasting effect. 

I have both the Saint and Sinner version of Pinky Nude but my preference on this hue is definitely on the Sinner. As beautiful as nudes can be, they can sometimes wash you out, so opting for one that is topped with punchy pigment makes total sense. 

If nudes feel a little bland against your skin, try something with a pink undertone and it will definitely liven you up, and Lipstick Queen's Pinky Nude Sinner is a handy tool to have in your make-up arsenal. The beige ratio is perfect so you'll find it's a great shade for so many skin tones. 

90% pigment also means that it stays put, making it a gorgeous nude force to be reckoned with. A highly recommended lipstick that will undoubtedly become a repeat purchase. 

Colour Intensity: medium

Finish: creamy colour, some shine 

Overall Rating: 5/5

You'll like this if: you're after a complexion brightening nude

Perfect for: everywhere and everything! 

Monday, 14 March 2016

Soap and Glory - Sexy Mother Pucker lipstick in Naked Beige

Day 2 of my weekend of nudes led me to this little one from Soap & Glory. After such a success with the lip gloss, I was excited to try its solid counterpart. 

Naked Beige isn't as boring as the name may suggest. Instead of visualising dreary wallpaper that your nan would buy, think instead of beautiful soft terracotta cashmere. This is probably the best way to describe this beautiful nude.

Unlike many other nudes, Naked Beige is very rich in colour. The coverage is stunning and the warmth that this shade ads really uplifts your complexion. It's these undertones that make this perfect for a broad spectrum of skin tones.

If the thought of lip tingling put you off the Sexy Mother Pucker lip gloss, then rest assured that the lipstick is a safe bet. It doesn't have the same plumping effect, but it does look pretty damn good.

Colour Intensity: medium

Finish: soft, moisturise feel with some shine 

Overall Rating: 4/5

You'll like this if: you want a nude with attitude 

Perfect for: well, anything really 

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Soap and Glory - Sexy Mother Pucker lipgloss is Rose and Shine

This weekend has been a weekend of nude! Before you get too excited at what the rest of this blog might contain, let me stop you in your tracks and let you know that I'm talking about nude colours. 

After months and months of adorning bright, vivid shades, I have gone back to basics and am embracing the natural lip look. 

Finding the right natural shade isn't as easy as it looks, so on day 1 (Friday), I opted for Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Pucker lip gloss in Rose & Shine. I wanted something light to go with my dark, smokey eye and this luscious lip gloss did the trick.

Now, I have to warn you that Sexy Mother Pucker isn't your average lip gloss. It claims to give you voluptuous lips with its plumping technology, and as a tried and tested user, I can semi-vouch for this. A few seconds after applying this lip gloss, you get a tingling sensation - it feels like there's a mild electric current running back and forth on your lips. Before you start to panic at the thought and run a mile from this gloss, don't. Other lip glosses have been much worse. This sensation is very mild and disappears after a while. The bee-stung feeling will make you want to naturally pout your lips, which gives a fuller illusion. I personally don't think it did that much for me.

These sort of lip glosses have been around for a while. I remember trying a Duwop one when I was sixteen and actually thought I had an allergic reaction to it before googling and realising that's what it was meant to do. There was also a Too Faced lip gloss when I was eighteen which did exactly the same thing - my university housemates and I would wear it all the time on nights out, until I kissed a guy on the cheek with it on, caused his cheek to go red and swell, and he thought I was Rogue from X Men (no joke!). 

Anyway, Rose & Shine is a pretty, petal pink. It's very natural if you have a fair skin tone and despite the tingling, it's a lovely formula on the lips.

Colour Intensity: low

Finish: high gloss, slight plain ;-)

Overall Rating: 3/5 

You'll like this if: you want an affordable lip plumping product

Perfect for: day to day, with a smokey eye

Definitely not perfect for: dates! You do not want to kiss anyone with this on

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Sleek - Lip VIP in Reserved

If you haven't already tried Sleek make-up, I really urge you to give this brand a go. You won't be disappointed with its array of high end dupes, gorgeous colours, extensive range and most importantly, great quality. I am now a fully transitioned Sleek lover and their lipsticks have played a part in the blossoming of this particular relationship.

Lip VIP is a new range of lipsticks that Sleek have just launched. They claim to be semi-matte with moisturising power and impactful colour. Quite a claim from this drugstore rising star so I had to try it for myself.

I selected a few colours, but the first one I couldn't wait to try was Reserved. With Spring fast approaching what better colour to grace your lips than a gorgeous coral. And what a coral it is! If you're after an electric, flourescent pinky orange, then grab this lipstick. I only needed a couple of coats to get full coverage which was really impressive. 

With a formula that includes Shea Butter, Coconut Oil and Vitamin E, it's hard to pick faults with something that not only makes your lips feel good but actually does good, but not convinced Reserved  is as semi-matte as Sleek claim. Perhaps it's the coconut oil, but there's definitely a glossy feel and look to the lipstick. But this is only a minor technicality and I cannot wait to swatch the rest of the range.

Colour Intensity: high

Finish: glossy feel with a sheen

Overall Rating: 3/5

You'll like this if: you want to speed up Spring with a beautiful coral

Perfect for: evenings out, coffee mornings, work - looks great with Butter's Blagger nail polish!

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