My Favourite Rose Gold Blushes

Is there anything prettier than a rose gold blush?

Getting MAC's Dainty with a holiday set last Christmas kick-started my passion and my little collection has grown a bit.

One thing I've found is that price doesn't really matter when it comes to colour or quality, from the cheapest - Sleek's £3.99 - to the dearest - NARS' £20.50 there are beautiful rosey gold blushes out there to suit every budget.

And so, below you see:
Top row: Milanli Luminous, MAC Dainty, Bourjois Rose D'Or
Bottom row: NARS Orgasm, Make Up Store Lust, Sleek MakeUP Rose Gold

And swatched, in the same order as above:

At the moment I'm going through a NARS Orgasm phase as I only got it a couple of months ago, but I do find it could be more pigmented.  

From the swatches you can see Sleek's the the most pigmented, and also, I find, the creamiest to blend, but you can overdo it sometimes!

Bourjois' Rose D'Or is actually more of a fuchsia pink under flash, but very flattering on my pale skin.

I've loved Dainty for a long time now, but swatched alongside all the others it looks too orange for my liking, and the same could be said to a lesser extent, for Make Up Store's Lust.

This week I'm planning on getting better acquainted with Milani Luminous.  It's mainly available in the US but you can get it online too for around $5.99.

The newest addition to the collection is Rose D'Or from Bourjois. For years I was addicted to Lune D'Or. This one is very shimmery, but more pigmented than I remember Lune being. Unlike most I actually like the little brush which comes with it as its stiffness helps to scoop up a good amount of powder, I then blend it out with a fluffier brush, like the MAC 168.

One blush I forgot to take a snap of before starting this post is e.l.f's Studio blush in Candid Coral. It's very similar to NARS Deep Throat, and also resembles Orgasm. If you're looking for a great budget blush that's flattering on a wide range of skin shades, then I suggest you check it out!

Are there any other rose gold blushes I MUST have in my collection?!


Review: £2.39 Lacura Foundation from ALDI Supermarket

I've been using this foundation for almost two years so I think it's high time for a review!  The best bit it? It's £2.39!  The worst bit? It's sold at ALDI supermarket, which isn't very accessible for some.  

I use the shade called 'Transparent'.  The name's a bit misleading, but as you can see from the blob below, it's a pretty good match for my pale skin.  Now it's not the lightest 'cheap' foundation you can get - Max Factor do some very pale ones, but it's fine for me.

As you can see, it's very creamy and gives relatively full coverage, even over my freckles.

No flash
With flash


  • It promises "perfect coverage and natural shine protection" and it pretty much delivers on this.
  • Price: for what it is, the price is truly unbelievable.  I reach for this far more than my many other expensive foundations, like MAC Studio Fix.  £2.39 is even below your standard 'drugstore' foundation price point.  You can't beat it on value for money.
  • Texture: it contains aloe vera and shea butter and therefore feels quite moisturising.  It's very creamy and a little goes a long way - I've been using this tube on and off for nearly a year.  However, the formulation is best for oily skin as it is a little drying once set.
  • Coverage: medium to full and very buildable but it feels light on.  You need to be careful not to leave a tidemark as it does set, so it's a good idea to bring it down onto your neck.  It's not as heavy as Collection 2000 Lasting Finish, which is my favourite budget full coverage foundation.  You would still want to use a concealer for undereye circles or blemishes.
  • Application: I prefer to apply it with my hands as it's easier to blend when melted by the warmth of my fingers, but it also applies well with a traditional foundation brush or a duo fibre.  It is builable as I've mentioned, but it does 'set' after a while.  You don't need to use a primer with it.
  • Colour: personally, the shade is pretty much bang on for my fair freckly skin, especially in the summer.
  • Packaging: Unlike more expensive drugstore foundations it comes in a box so you can be sure it's not been tampered with.  The container is a nice hygienic squeezy tube which contains 30mls - the standard amount.  Being in a tube, the product hasn't oxidised and has lasted me ages.
  • Finish: although it does feel quite dry after it sets, my skin actually looks dewy, not oily.  The finish is one of my favourite things about it. 
  • Durability: it lasts for a good 6 -8 hours which is enough for me for a night out or work.

Lacura also produce a pressed powder in 'Transparent' which is excellent and again, only £2.39.

  • Shade range: the shade range is quite narrow, I think there may only be about 3, but it's so inexpensive it's worth a try, and if it's too dark you can always mix it with your moisturiser to make a tint.
  • Scent: Although it says it contains no perfumes I do detect a faint, but not unpleasant scent.
  • No SPF: for me this isn't too much of a drawback, as I use a specific SPF cream every day before applying my make up anyway.
  • Availability: living in central London, it's a mission for me to get to Aldi.  My nearest one is near the end of the northbound Jubilee line, but I mostly stock up on my travels - to Ireland and Manchester...oh the glamour!

How it looks on...cue some grumpy looks!

As you can see, even when using a flash, it leaves my skin dewy rather than greasy looking and provides just the right amount of coverage which still lets a few of my freckles show through.

If you still need convincing, check out its reviews on MakeupAlley where it gets an impressive 4.5/5.


BaByliss Ceramic Straightening Brush: The Gentler Route to Straight Hair

I've had this Babyliss Ceramic Straightening brush for a couple of years but only began using it regularly when I got GHD straighteners last Christmas.  If you think that straighteners alone do the job for you then you need to try adding this brush to your routine! (I have long wavy hair for reference).  

Babyliss intends this brush to be "used while blow drying" where "the ceramic coated plates heat up and retain heat to cut down on drying time.  The ceramic coated plates also help reduce frizz to give your hair a stunning silky smooth finish."  

Now it does work well when used while blow drying, and if your hair isn't too stubborn it will get it pretty straight and cut down drying time.  The brush is pretty lightweight so a good option for travel if you don't want to pack your heavy GHD irons.

However, I prefer to use mine with my GHDs as they grab the hair and flatten it out meaning that you only have to run the straighteners through once, rather a few times, and so over time, your hair doesn't get as damaged from the hot iron.  The poker straight look lasts all day and well into the next so long as you don't wash it.  I'm pretty rubbish with hair styling and I find it immensely easy to use - you grab a piece of hair, clamp it in the brush and pull down, followed by the straighteners right behind it.  I also find I can get the straightening job done a lot quicker as you can work in larger sections.

I'm pretty sure I only paid about £8 when I got it, but you can get it at Boots for £11.22 and it comes with two section clips shown in the pic below.


Remember to collect the final NOTW token for a FREE Model's Own make up kit!

I wasn't going to bother with this giveaway as there's nothing too exciting, but since my boyfriend happened to buy the rag (News of the World) last Sunday I thought I might as well grab another today as I've not tried anything from Model's Own yet.

I'm popping out for it in a bit and thought I might as well give you a little reminder in case you're collecting the tokens too. There were 3 in total over 3 weeks and you need to present 2 of them to you local participating Tesco supermarket. There's only one largish Tesco near me so it better so not out of stock!

The token will be lurking inside the 'newspaper's' magazine called Fabulous - this is last week's with Jade Goody's ex on the front...I forget his name...Jeff something?

I'm looking forward to trying out the eyeliner.


Urban Decay Keeps Getting Better!

There are two products, one old, one new, from Urban Decay I need to own - and soon!

Let's start with the most exciting one: Urbanglow Cream Highlight - ain't it a beauty?

As far as I know it's still only available in the US and an extensive search of the interwebs only suggests it will join us by Spring 2011 at the earliest.  I have powder and liquid highligters, but no creams and since it come in the shade 'Sin' - shimmering champagne - which is my all time favourite UD eyeshdow I plan to be one of the first people to get my hands on it!

They're described as being 'packed with pearl powders and coconut oil' and promise 'to leave your skin with an ethereal glow.'

Other highlights (gettit?!) of the marketing blurb include: 

Packed with pearl powders, the weightless formula adds luminescence wherever you need it: Craft contours where there were none. Create sculpted cheek and brow bones. Look like you got a full night's sleep with a touch of Urbanglow in the inner corners of your eyes. Hide that hangover with a dewy, youthful glow. The non-greasy formula dries down instantly, and can be worn right on top of makeup.

Can be worn over make up?! Sign me up!

They're $24 but will be £18 when they hit UK shops - a little more than the exchange rate, but I did expect them to just change the $ to £.

And now onto a product which has been around for a while, but I've never spotted it at Boots! 

I'm always on the look at for something to keep oil at bay and my make up in place and this mattifying gel sounds like just the thing!  It can be used under or over make up and apparently helps to tighten pores but I'd be happy with it just keeping me shine free.  It's described as 'colour neutral' and even works in hot and humid conditions.  I've heard good things about UD's 'all nighter' make up setting spray, so there's a good possibility De-Slick will be effective too.

You can probably get it from Urban Decay concessions in large department stores like House of Fraser or Debenhams, but you can order it online from here for £16 - even a better deal than in the USA where it's $28 .  But you only get 20mls, not a lot considering most foundations run at about 30mls. 

Nevertheless, sign me up!


Bag Lady

Remember that River Island satchel bag I was lusting after just after Christmas but couldn't justify after all the mad sales shopping? Well, I figured a suitable amount of time has passed and I've been quite good for a couple of weeks, so I gave in to the it never did go on sale like I'd hoped!

It's a cross body satchel bag which is great for me as I'm so forgetful and always putting down bags and forgetting them inducing mini heart attacks when I think I've lost it!  It's not real leather but it does look more expensive that £36.99.  I've used it almost every day since I got it - to work, shopping, out at night and I'm so happy with it.  It vaguely reminds me of the Mulberry Alexa crossed with Miu Miu because of the buckle and stud detailing.

The only drawbacks are that for quite a small bag (33cm in wide) it is heavy, but even so, I worry that the handles are starting to wear at the side as the shape is already a bit distorted - but I do jam a lot of heavy junk in!


I Caved: Umberto Giannini Backcomb In A Bottle

I missed my bus the other night and used it as an excuse to pop into Boots to see if they had the fabled Backcomb In A Bottle in set me back £5.61.  I don't care how amazing it turns out to be - I would only use it sparingly at this price for only 200mls!

The container is beautiful and there's another lid under the silver one.  I've only used it once so far, and my hair was curly so I couldn't really work with it that much to see the full effect.  It seemed very sticky and seemed to work pretty much like a traditional hairspray.  Also the smell is vile - just pure chemicals with no hint of 'parfam'!

It claims to be suitable for all hair types and deliver instant texture and the volume of backcombed hair without having to wreck your hair.

So I'll have a fuller review for you soon after I've tried it on my hair in a few different ways, but I'd hold your horses on getting this until you've read a good few reviews...I literally just bought into the name and didn't consult blogland as much as I normally do before buying something!  I suspect that some backcombing will be necessary, but you may not have to do as much as normal  and it will hopefully provide extremely firm hold.

Stay tuned!


Lush-cious Bargains

I picked these up a couple of weeks ago when Lush were having a 50% off sale on their holiday giftsets.  I was in the Lush in Westfield the day after Boxing Day and everything was gone, but I found these beauties on the less-frequented Portobello Road branch.

On the left is the Stardust set and I knew I had to have the Gingerbread House when I saw it on a few blogs.   Stardust was £24.95 down to £12.48 and the Gingerbread House was £6.95 down from £13.95 - bargain! There were still a good number of sale bits left when I got mine so you may still be able to get lucky!  I got whipped up into a bit of a frenzy and panic bought the lip tints too.  

Look at the cute robin! The roof lifts off to reveal...

From left to right: Cinders Bath Ballistic, Gingerbread House Bubble Bar, Li'l Lush Pud Bath Ballistic, Candy Cane Bubble Bar. 

It was packed with the multicoloured Styrofoam bits you see below.  So far I've only tried the Gingerbread House Bubble Bar - it wasn't amazing I have to admit and made my bathwater a neony orange.  I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Lush - everything looks and smells so lovely in the shop, but when you get it home and into the bath the smell is not very strong and I'm not impresses with the texture sometimes.  I guess I go through phases with it.  I was all over it like a rash when I came across Lush in 2003, but went off it when I found that the soaps do 'go off' if you don't use them up within the first month or so (but they are billed fresh cosmetics).  Every year or so I do get lured back in, and so here we are!

The Stardust box is a bit boring when you get the wrapping paper off, but it will come in as a handy box for posting things!

And here's what's inside.  I mainly picked this up for the Lip Dip and Twilight Bath Ballistic.

Pretty things!

I used the Twilight Bath Ballistic the other night - Monday night baths are now a regular feature - it made my bathwater a pleasing pink, but had little scent - I hardly picked up on the Lavender.  Also, it's blue inside!  I'm sure I've tried the Candy Cane Bubble Bar in the past, or something very similar to it, and this is one product I really love - lots of creamy bubbles!

Looking forward to trying this much hyped shower smells like Bubblegum Lip Scrub, which at times can be a bit too sickly sweet.

I've barely made a dent in my other lip scrub, but this one tastes absolutely divine! It's sherbet, cranberry and lemon flavoured...noms!

Since Lush products smell best to me before they come into contact with water, I popped them into this flower pot (it used to house an Orchid) and now my bedroom smells divine! I don't leave them in the bathroom as mine gets very steamy from hot showers and the products would get damaged and go off quicker. 

After I took this photo I tied the silver ribbon from the Stardust wrapping around the jar to make it extra pretty!

Snow Fairy Lip Tint was half price, at £1.98 - again, like the shower gel it smells like Bubblegum lip scrub.  I find it a bit dry and it doesn't show up on my lips very well, so I wouldn't repurchase.

I was sneakily upsold It Started With a Kiss at the till and although it was £4.95 I really like it as it's a really bright colour on my lips and I get a compliment every time I wear it.  However I probably wouldn't repurchase this one either as it's dry, not as bad as Snow Fairy, but I take ages to use up lip products so it will have turned to dust before I come near to finishing it! For the best effect I apply a lip balm, and then the tint, but who wants to carry two products - you're better off with a Sleek Pout Polish.

Snow Fairy Lip Tint

It Started With A Kiss Lip Tint (I don't know why it hasn't shown up that vibrant, but trust me, it's post box red!)

Did you get any good steals in the Lush sale?


Sleek MakeUP Molten Metal in Pewter/Gold Leaf

These sold out from Superdrug pretty swiftly but I managed to grab the last one from a display in a little tucked away branch.  Sleek seem to be starting a price hike as it set me back £6..99, which considering that amazing eyeshadow palettes like Storm with 12 shades were only £4.99 a year ago, is quite a rise.

I like the packaging, although I did have to rip the cardboard box a bit to get the palette out.  It's very sturdy and has a handy mirror in the lid.

Pewter on the left and Gold Leaf on the right.

These are very creamy shadows and even feel more luxurious than my beloved Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadows.  I've seen the Molten Metals compared and even praised above Illamasqua Liquid Metals, but I've not tried the latter so can't add to that!  As you can see they are very pigmented and gleam when swatched.

You can apply it with your fingers but you get a more precise application if you use a small compact flat shader brush, preferably with man-made fibres.  This one is from Coastal Scents brush set.

The colour I applied was Gold Leaf and I was pretty first.  I was so excited to try the Molten Metal I just whacked it over the shadow I'd had on all day which had pretty much worn off - but that's why my liner and mascara looks a bit skanky!

And this is where it all goes a bit wrong...

I'd read a few reviews which claimed it didn't crease (unlike the Illamasqua ones), but it creased on me after 5 minutes.  Now I do have quite oily lids...but come on!

Ans here's the state it was in after an hour.  Not good.

I was really looking forward to glamming up with it on Saturday night, but I'm not so sure now.  I might try the Pewter on to work tomorrow over some Urban Decay Primer Potion to see if that makes a difference.  Other than than I have a Stila eyeshadow in a similar gold colour which I could use over the top to set it - but then of course I wouldn't get that glossy cream eyeshadow look!

I'll let you know how I get on, but from first impressions, for £7 I'd give these a miss and save up for a Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadow, which if you pick the right shade can double as either a powder eyeshadow base or eyeliner.


New Winter Coat

I know winter's almost over but...c'est l'amour...

I originally bought a lovely military style black wool coat from Next (it's not on their website any more) and I was pretty happy with it, but I had that niggling feeling that there was something better out there.  I had almost given up and ripped the tags off the Next coat when I spotted the one above in Oasis last Sunday and bought it on impulse and returned the Next one the next(!) day.  It was £130 reduced to £100, which I didn't think was much of a sale, but I did love it the extra £15 it cost over the Next one.  

This afternoon I logged onto the Oasis website to see it selling for £60! WTF?! So I made a quick dash over to the Oasis near work and sure enough I found it for £60 there too (and maybe a lovely navy dress too *cough*) so I bought it AGAIN! There's no way I'm spending £40 extra on the coat when I don't have to!  I'm going to return the one I bought today with the receipt for the one I'm wearing for £100.  It may not be ethical, but in the States, getting a rebate for something that gets reduced further a certain number of days after you bought it it standard practice.  Wish me luck!

It's still available to purchase in XS-M - all the Larges have sold out online but you may still be able to pick one up instore.

There are some other pretty coats in the Oasis sale and this black one is very similar to the Next one I returned, except not so flarey at the bottom.  It comes in red too and if they come down further I could be persuaded to buy ahead for next year!

I really adore this dress but I'm not sure how it would look on and its sold out in the stores near me.  I'm into long sleeve dresses at the moment!

And here is the 'magenta' dress I justified buying because of the £40 cashback I should be getting on the coast.  It was £30 in the sale and at least it's not black although it is a similar cut to one I already have, but hey, I try to stick to styles that flatter me rather than follow trends!

Do you know of any other good sales going on still?
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