February 28, 2013

mac viva glam nicki lipstick

I hadn't purchased a Mac lipstick in over a year until I recently went shopping in Harrods and spotted this beauty. I'd heard about it before so couldn't wait to pick it up and after I swatched it on my hand it was instant love. I have countless bright lipsticks but I can most definitely state that this is shade is one of a kind, it's a creamy pastel pink toned coral that looks goes really well with olive skin tones. This will be my staple lipstick for Spring/Summer, but to be honest it's so pretty that I'd wear it all year round. Just make sure to wear a lip balm beforehand as it's a matte finish it can be quite drying on the lips. As with all Mac Viva Glam lipsticks, the money made all goes to the Mac Aids Fund making them a completely guilt free purchase.

chanel péridot nail polish

I'm head over heels for Chanel make-up, it all seems to have a beautifully sophisticated feel with a modern edge. It's safe to say that if I spot a new nail polish or lipstick that they have launched I will ignore the price and hand my credit card straight over. Recently I picked up a nail polish in the shade 'Péridot' which I have been meaning to purchase for what seems like forever. I heard words on the counter that apparently it is going to be discontinued soon, so be sure to pick it up while it's still around. The shade is a stunning antique gold with green undertones, it reminds me of the golden colours from a peacock's feather. I haven't seen a colour like this from any other brand meaning I can justify the price to myself, it just looks so luxurious and eye catching on the nails. I hadn't worn a topcoat for the picture above as I always like to capture the true finish for nail swatches but I imagine that a glossy finish would make it look even prettier.

February 27, 2013

origins brighter by nature peel pads

A new product in my skincare regime are these peel pads, apart from face masks I don't tend to use treatments on my skin so I've been enjoying trying them out. In the Winter time my skin turns very pale and lacks any radiance which is why I'm always on the hunt for a product that will give me a brighter complexion. I usually use brightening face masks or illuminating foundations and whilst these do work well they don't actually improve my skin. I now use one of these peel pads every few days and have noticed a significant difference in my skin tone, it definitely looks brighter and fresher. They are surprisingly powerful for little pads and you can instantly feel them working on your skin, I also find that they clear my skin of dirt and impurities meaning that I have less blemishes to deal with. Overall I would most definitely repurchase a tub of these - they may be slightly pricey at £30 but bearing in mind you only use two a week that means one tub is 5 month's supply!

February 25, 2013

models own ice neon collection

I always love to see new collections from Models Own, they never fail to come up with something interesting yet on trend and I was very pleased to receive two nail polishes from the new 'Ice Neon' collection to have a go with. The twist with the range is that it's advised that you keep the polishes in the fridge to prolong the neon effect, this is probably a bit of a marketing ploy but petty cool nonetheless. The bottles have a frosted effect and come with lids that match the colour of the polish which I really love. If you already have lots of neon/bright shades of polishes I wouldn't say you need to rush out and buy the whole collection however there are definitely a few shades well worth a look.

First off I tried the shade 'Luis Lemon'. After seeing the colour in the bottle I couldn't wait to give it a go but was a little disappointed with how sheer it was upon application. It took around four coats to get a good finish but it is worth it as the colour turns out gorgeous neon lemon. In my opinion this is the stand out and 'must have' shade in the collection.

Next up I got to have a play with 'Pink Punch'. Although you can tell just how bright this shade is, in reality it's slightly more pink toned, think fiery fuchsia. I do already have many neon pink shades in my collection but was surprised to find that this colour is different to them all. This polish has a shine to the finish compared to the semi-matte finish of 'Luis Lemon'.

The collection will launch in Boots stores on 22nd March and will retail at £5 a bottle.

February 22, 2013

the body shop hemp hand protector

This hand cream has been one of my favourites for many years, and I was actually first introduced to it by Mum who was using it religiously from around eight years ago until now. If there's one thing that she's an expert on regarding beauty products then it's hand cream, and I know that if she recommends one then it's good stuff. Thankfully I now have my own tube so I can stop pinching hers and have tried it out properly for myself. The product is very thick so you only need to squeeze a small amount out of the tube, it almost feels as luxurious as a mask. Although it's thick it does sink into the skin with ease and doesn't leave a greasy feeling, the smell is also really nice and fresh but not overpowering. I do get very dry hands in the Winter and this cream definitely keeps them soft and moisturised if applied daily, a big winner in my book and definitely has 'holy grail' status in the hand cream category. It's one of their best sellers for a reason!

February 21, 2013

radox fresh and fruity shower gels

I always get excited by new launches from Radox, even though they aren't a luxury brand I love to try out what's new. Today's post gives a little insight into their new Fresh & Fruity range, consisting of two shower creams and one shower gel. My personal favourite of the range is Cherry Blast but I do recommend getting your hands on the whole range as they are a bargain at just £1.99 each.

"If you live life in the fast lane why not indulge in Berry Burst: Scrub up in your shower with this sumptuous shower gel containing berries and milk. It's bursting full of energy so you will be feeling fully charged and ready to face the day with a spring in your step."

"For girls who like to chill and un-wind why not try Coconut Kiss: Why stop dreaming when you get out of bed in the morning? This blissful shower gel containing coconut and milk has a deliciously Caribbean scent that will allow you to calmly daydream into your very own world of paradise with super soft skin."

"For girly girls who like to feel gorgeous all day long then use Cherry Blast: This cherry-licious shower gel containing juicy cherries, milk and citrus oils has a sweet, tantalizing fragrance that will invigorate your senses and energize you in the morning as well as leaving your skin feeling soft and smooth so you can feel gorgeous whatever the day throws at you."

February 20, 2013

rococo unisexy matte nail polish

My new favourite nail polish of late is this beautiful matte shade by Rococo. Strangely enough it's actually the first matte shade that I've ever tried, and I'm definitely a convert. As much as I love glossy nails they are a little predictable and I've grown to adore the chicness of matte nail polish. I can sense this polish becoming the next must have product in the beauty world, the finish looks exactly like black leather, very grunge and on trend. I'm going to have a play around with different looks as I think a flash of neon on the tips or rhinestone detailing would look great too.

February 17, 2013

selfridges valentine's beauty box

A couple of days ago the Selfridges Valentine's beauty box landed through my door and even though this post is a little late the box is still up for sale so I thought I'd put a review up before they sell out. You may remember my blog post on their lucky bag a few months ago which was a similar concept as this but this time round you know what you are getting before you make the order as all boxes have the same contents with a value of £87. 

COURREGES ROSE DE COURREGES EAU DE PARFUM 30ML - I've never seen such a great full sized perfume come in a beauty box before so I couldn't wait to try this out and to my surprise I've fallen completely in love with the scent. It's a beautifully soft powdery rose scent and I can definitely see myself repurchasing it in the future, in my eyes the beauty box is worth purchasing just for this product alone. 

AROMATHERAPY ASSOCIATES ROSE BODY CREAM 40ML - I rarely ever use body cream so will probably give this away to someone, I'm a great fan of Aromatherapy Associates products though so would imagine this is a good product.

STEAMCREAM POT LUCY IN THE SKY 75G - I've tried Steamcream before and really liked it as a face moisturiser, it's really light on the skin and leaves my face looking radiant. I really love the packaging of this one too.

KURE BAZAAR NAIL POLISH IN STILETTO 12ML - I'm yet to try out this nail polish but love the brownish red colour of it, this is one of my favourite colours to wear on my nails so I'm looking forward to having a go with it.

STILA LIPGLAZE IN WATERMELON 2.4ML - I usually hate  lipglosses with a passion however I really like the milky pink colour of this lipglaze by Stila, it applies really nicely using the brush and feels thick on the lips rather than sticky, the colour pay off is great too.

butter london knees up nail polish

I've wanted to try out Butter nail polishes for a long long time and luckily a few came in the post a couple of weeks ago for me to try out. I will of course write blog posts on them all but my first post just had to be on this one. I was really impressed with the luxurious formula of the nail polish to the point that it stands out in my mind as one of the best I've ever used. I only needed to use two coats for rich pigmentation and best of all it dries with a glossy finish as if you have used topcoat. Another reason I feel no need to use a topcoat with this is that it lasts days and days without chipping, so overall a massive winner in my book! Not forgetting to mention the truly beautiful shade of this polish, it's a deep ruby metallic red that makes your fingernails look like little jewels. Finally, all Butter London nail polishes are free from formaldehyde, toluene and DBP (dibutyl phthalate).

February 16, 2013

valentine's day glossybox

I know that Valentine's Day was a little while ago now and may seem like a distant memory to most however I've been ill recently so only just managed to get this post up. I usually only review themed boxes that I get sent from Glossybox as I find them most interesting to read and they usually include the best products.


I've tried a couple of Sassoon products before and liked them so I'm looking forward to trying out this shine spray. It's also the perfect size to fit in my handbag or take with me whilst travelling.


Anatomicals are quickly becoming one of my new favourite brands, I absolutely love the bright packaging and cheeky slogans on their products. I usually find rose scents too sickly however I really like this as it has just the right balance.


When I first saw this lipstick included in the box I thought I'd hate it and had no expectation of ever using it however I tried it on and really liked the frosty finish it gave my lips, it certainly wouldn't be the shade for everyone but is worth looking at if you like cool toned lippies.


My least favourite product out of the bunch is this loose eye shadow, it's a warm toned brown with chunky glitter, basically my worst nightmare. The pigmentation isn't very good either and has a cheap feel to it.


I'm yet to try out this mascara but I like how they included a full size of this in the box. I know that MeMeMe are quite a popular brand on the blogging scene as the products are inexpensive and can be bought from Superdrug.

Star Violet Beauty readers get an exclusive discount on their order by using the code: AFFSVB20OFF

February 10, 2013

soap and glory - the perfect manicure set

Recently I received this hand care pack by Soap & Glory to review and while it's no longer for sale as a set you can still buy the products individually. My hands are always ever so dry in the Winter and I regularly suffer from patches of dry and rough skin meaning I have to take extra care of them. Last year I was in college studying beauty so got treated to many paraffin wax and hand mask treatments on a weekly basis but now I have to use at home methods.

HAND FOOD HAND CREAM - £5.00 - This has been one of my favourite hand creams for many years now, it ticks every box and is a great price. The product feels thick and luxurious yet sinks into your skin straight away with no greasy feeling afterwards, and the smell is simply gorgeous as with all S&G products. There should be no reason as to why anyone wouldn't love this hand cream, it even comes in a mini size to keep in your handbag too.

ENDLESS GLOVE HAND MASK - £6.50 - There are few hand masks on the market in the beauty world, and considering the amount of hand creams that are sold I have no idea why. Hand creams are great for a quick fix and if applied regularly keep your hands moisturised however in my opinion they don't do nearly as a good job as masks. I squeezed a dollop of the product onto my hands the other night and then put on the gloves and left them on overnight as advised. Surprisingly having the gloves on all night was no bother and didn't irritate me at all. I woke in the morning to find all of the product had soaked into my skin and my hands felt amazingly soft. They stayed feeling like this for three to four days and remarkably almost cured all dry patches. Considering I have only used the treatment once I'm super impressed with the results and will certainly be sure to do the overnight routine every week from now on. If you suffer from dry skin on your hands or they are in need of a boost in hydration I guarantee this will work wonders. The product doesn't include gloves however regular cotton ones will work just as well, but use a smaller size than normal as this way the product will stay on the skin.

February 06, 2013

tangle teezer aqua splash

I've been a big fan of my tangle teezer brush for many years now so when I received the aqua splash version in the post I couldn't wait to try it out. The brush is designed to use in the shower or bath (when combing through conditioner etc) and has a hollow centre to prevent water from getting trapped inside. The thing I like most about the brush is that it has a larger surface area than the original brushes meaning you can comb through your hair more quickly. The brush glides through my hair much more gently than a standard paddle brush that I sometimes use and untangles my hair with ease. If you haven't already tried tangle teezer brushes then you should definitely pick up this one from the range, I guarantee that you will be converted after a couple of uses. The brushes are a little expensive but last many years so just think of it as an investment for your lovely locks. 

February 05, 2013

casino themed nail art

Recently I was set a little challenge by Ladbrokes to come up with my very own casino themed nail art, whilst a betting site has virtually no relevance to a beauty blog I couldn't resist having the excuse of getting creative with my nails. I'm no stranger to painting my nails lots of different shades but I very rarely get arty with them, which is a bit of a shame really and as a beauty blogger I should hang my head in shame.

I was sent a Konad stamping kit to have a go with (including a casino themed nail plate) and spent most of the night getting the hang of it properly. Firstly you have to paint on the polish to the plate, making sure to fill all the gaps of the design and then use the scraper at just the right angle and level of pressure to scrape away the polish from around the design in one stroke. Secondly you need to stamp over the paint gently and then roll the transfer over your nail with care and precision. I am one of the most clumsy people that you could ever meet so to have worked out a method of using the kit properly is nothing short of a miracle for me. Lining up the stamper with your nail is the trickiest part and it's pretty much a guessing game as to where the polish will transfer onto your nail.

All said and done I really enjoyed creating a nail look with the inspiration of the casino and would love to have a go at doing more of this kind of thing for my blog. I will put up a tutorial post soon of how to use the Konad kit for anyone interested.


February 03, 2013

laura mercier creme de pistache honey bath

Bath time is always my favourite moment of the day, in my eyes nothing can beat the feeling of being in a bubbly bath catching up on magazines in candlelight. I'm pretty fussy when it comes to what I put in my bath, I have a collection of bath oils, bath creams and bubble bars and alternate what I use on a daily basis. Recently this jar filled with nectar like bubble bath by Laura Mercier landed through my door and I've been obsessed with the scent ever since. I adore the nutty yet sweet scent of pistachio products and find them perfect for a refreshing yet relaxing bath. The product has a really luxurious feel and even comes with a wooden honey dipper to add just the right amount to the running water. I find that it creates a beautifully soft lather in the bath and once I'm out leaves my skin smelling amazing. Even though the pot is huge and should last a while I'm going to be saving it for extra special bath moments where I'm in need of a real pamper. I now have my eye on the rest of the Laura Mercier bath range, the fig scented version of honey bath looks equally as wonderful.

February 02, 2013

black hair dye

Today I decided to to bite the bullet and dye my hair black, I've been thinking of doing it for quite a while as I got bored of the lighter colour my hair was and hated the warm tint that it had. I'm still at that age where you can still get away with experimenting with hair colour and if it goes wrong you can just blame it on being young. I really like how the black dye has turned out and love how it makes my make-up stand out however it does make me look slightly washed first thing in the morning. Now I just need to get a good haircut to frame my face properly and it will look much better.