Kiko Milano Have Done It Again

Well well well, someone’s been a little video heavy lately haven’t they? Today I thought I’d go back to my roots and do a good ol’ fashioned written post.

If you know me you’ll know my go to face doesn’t normally involve eyeshadow. I usually reserve it for bigger events like weddings etc. mainly because I’m not as skilled in that department and I find it more of a faff. However since acquiring both the Lorac Pro Pallet and Pro Pallet 2 and constantly drooling over various smokey eyes on YouTube, I have been dabbling a bit more.

The recent abundance of eyeshadow sticks being released from both high end and high street brands alike has made my foray even easier. The first that came to my attention were the By Terry Ombre Blackstar offering. I mean I have no idea what that name has got to do with anything but I guess it stands out… Though I’ve not tried them myself (£29 a pop?! Give over) every Bblogger under the sun has been gushing over them, particularly the shade Misty Rock, which does look gorgeous. Factor in the offerings from Bobbi Brown, No. 7, Laura Mercier, Bourjois and more and you’re bound to find some within your budget.

I however headed straight to the glorious Kiko Milano to try out their version and let me tell you, I was not disappointed. I can’t remember why I chose to go straight to Kiko, probably because I knew they’d be affordable but still excellent quality. I bought them online where you have to spend a minimum of £25 for some reason so I *had* to buy 5 (#SorryNotSorry) Or at least I could’ve sworn I bought 5 but I can’t find the 5th one and have no recollection of what colour it might have been so maybe I did just get 4 and I’ve gone crazy…
Anyway, they really are very good. First of all, extremely easy to use. You just draw the colour directly onto you lid and blend out with your finger or a brush, it takes mere minutes. They are really creamy and easy to blend but eventually set really well and do not budge AND they’re cheaper than the No.7 ones (wuutt!) with a wider range of shades (although Boots.com seem to be doing a 3 for 2 on selected No.7 products at the mo.)

I’ve swatched all the shades I currently own but just being on the site to link it for you has prompted me to add another 4 to my shopping cart. Oops.

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Flash

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The shades I have are: 37- Burgundy, 15- Lilac, 21- Passion Fruit and 06 – Golden Brown. I really recommend them and they ‘ain’t lying when they say long lasting! You’ll need more than just a makeup wipe to get them off or you’ll be scrubbing for a while. As with any eyeshadow look I always use an eye primer first. I’m wearing the shade Lilac in my last video and Burgundy in a vid I have coming up so check them out.

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Matte Lips Sink Ships

So you may have noticed that liquid lipsticks have been having a bit of a moment lately. From Rimmel to Anastasia Beverly Hills, everyone and their mother has been jumping on the bandwagon.
In case you’re not familiar, a liquid lipstick is basically a lipstick, usually matte, in liquid form so it goes on like a gloss but is more opaque and has the finish of a lipstick. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you’ll know that I have a mild ( read: severe) obsession with the offering from Bourjois- the Rouge Ediition Velvet lipsticks. I have 4 shades, Hot Pepper which is a bright red leaning towards the orangey side, Pink Pong which is a bold fuchsia and just the most untouchable pink lip product IMHO, Nude-ist! which is a perfect Kylie Jenner, neutral and Happy Nude Year (brilliant) which is a pinky peach nude.

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I have nothing negative to say about this product, it’s a dream come true. They are amazingly pigmented, they go on creamy and set down to matte but aren’t hugely drying on the lips and are so comfortable to wear but most of all they last FOREVER! For someone who is a big fan of a bold lip this is SO important to me. I hate having to constantly top up or keep checking a mirror to make sure it hasn’t faded, leaving you with that gross ring of colour around the edge of your lips (ugh!) You can eat, drink, be merry and these will hardly budge, you don’t have to think about it. I usually will top them up once throughout the night and that’s it AND on New Years Eve I wore Pink Pong, fell asleep in my makeup at like 6:00am (GAHH I know, sorry Caroline Hirons!) and when I woke up my lips were still perfect! It comes off easily when you want it to with a bit of makeup remover.

So these are clearly the holy grail but I’m always on the look out for other options. A friend suggested the MUA Luxe Velvet Lip Lacquer which excited me because they’re only £3! I bought the shade Reckless and I LOVE the colour (a deep, darkish red) but I’m sorry to say it just didn’t last. As soon as you have a sip of a drink the formula starts to break down where the liquid had touched it so you can image what happens when you eat. I’ve worn mine about 3 or 4 times and the amount I had to top up it just didn’t seem worth it, I was constantly paranoid that the colour had gone weird and patchy. The formula is similar to the Bourjois ones but dries quicker when applying and then after a while almost feels kind of crumbly on the lips. Great if you’re only wearing it for an hour or two with no food or drink but just not practical for me sadly. Major bummer.

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The next one I tried was the Rimmel Apocalips Matte Lip Velvet in Orange-ology (an orange toned red). Now from the name I expected these to be much the same as the others in formula. They are not. The consistency is much thinner so you need to put on a lot to get an opaque finish but even then you struggle. It doesn’t dry or set down at all so the more you put on you’re kind of taking the underneath layers off. Also the doe foot applicator has a little dent or well in it where all the product gathers but then doesn’t transfer onto you lip, it kind of just sits in there. Most importantly it is not matte, the finish was shiny and felt almost oily on the lips! It doesn’t dry down so you constantly worried that its going to slip right off but it’s one redeeming feature is that it does kind of stain the lips so when the gloss wears off you are left with a somewhat even wash of colour. But no. Not happy at all.

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The final product is one I’ve only tried once but I think is going to be a good one. It’s the BEAUTIFUL Lime Crime Velvetine in Pansy (I can’t link it at the mo. because their site is down). This colour is so gorgeous and unique I just love it and I think it would work on nearly all skin tones. While applying I was aware that the formula felt more watery than the Bourjois or MUA versions. The colour is super pigmented though so you only need a couple of layers. Anyway because of the thin consistency I was really paranoid that the colour was coming off every time I took a sip of liquid but I wasn’t really in a situation where I could constantly check. I think I re-applied once to be sure and when I got home a few hours later it was still all good. I definitely need another test drive to be sure but at the moment I’d day they sit just under the Bourjois ones in terms of lasting, which is fine by me because those things are bionic! Oh, and it smells like cake! Anyway I adore the colour so I hope it isn’t as disappointing as the other offers and I still want to try all of the other offerings out there!

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Get Ya’ Nibs Out

I’m a huge black winged eyeliner fan and have been since I was about 16 and saw a copy of Vanity Fair with Angelina Jolie on the cover nailing the cat eye look.

Back in the day I used a really old Maybelline liquid eyeliner that I can’t even remember the name of, maybe Express Liner or something? It was quite a watery, matte formula with a fat, flexible felt (wheyyy alliteration!) nib. It was easy to use for a first timer but not great for doing a fine subtle line. But if you knew me when I was 16 you’d know subtlety wasn’t my forte in those days anyway.

When I became a little bit older and a little bit more, ahem “metal” I graduated to an eyeshadow brush and black eye shadow. The brush was the shape and size of a shader brush but with a sharpish edge but again not sharp enough to create anything subtle. I was alternating between two Nars shadows at the time. The main one I used was Night Porter which is actually a gorgeous shade. It looks really green in the pic but it’s actually black with a green shimmer running through it. The other one was also Nars and was basically the same but with a more subtle, red shimmer running through it. So anyway as you can imagine they created quite an emo effect…

Once I’d learnt the fine art of subtlety I graduated onto Rimmel Glam Eyes Professional Liquid Liner. As you can see from the pic the brush is very fine and again the formula was very liquid-y but thicker than the Maybelline one. TBH I don’t know how I was so good at using this back then because I tried recently and it was a disaster! Oh, and do not get the bugger in your eye because MAN does it burn.

So since those heady days my method of choice has been gel liner and a fine or push liner brush. First it was the Bobbi Brown gel liner but I found that dried out quite quickly, way before the pot was finished anyway. I then moved onto MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack which has remained a firm favourite. I also recently discovered KIKO Lasting Gel Liner, which I’ve only used a few times but I quite like. The formula is quite different to Blacktrack etc. In the pot it looks really shiny, though once applied to the eyes it sets down to matte. The formula is also not as solid, it’s almost kind of whipped or cream like in the pot. It goes on really nice and smooth but I would say it is a bit “smudgier” which means its easier to work with before it dries but I find it’s also easier to make mistakes. It is a decent contender though and like most Kiko products, at a very reasonable price.

But the reason for this lengthy preamble is to say that in all these years I’ve never been a fan of the eye liner pen. I’ve tried a few but hated them all. Either the nib wasn’t flexible enough or they dried out while applying or they tugged at they eye or dragged so you couldn’t get a solid line or colour or they flaked off! Like seriously. No.

Then I started using a free Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner pen that came with an issue Glamour magazine. Now, I was NOT a fan of their Alexa Chung Eye Do eyeliner pen, it was an abomination as far as I’m concerned so I don’t know what possessed me to try this one (probz ‘coz it woz free innit) but I’m glad I did. I really liked it and would buy it again. For me I think it all comes down to a softer more flexible nib. If the nib is too stiff {raises eyebrows seedily} I just can’t work with it. It wasn’t as dry as other pens I’d used either, it’s not the inkiest, I still found it needed a bit of a rest after one eye (or some hot breath like on your felt tip pens at school). I did find I needed to use the side of the nib a bit to get the ink out across the lid but the nib was great for creating a feline flick without drag.

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So this made me wonder if there were other good ones out there or even dupes for the Eyeko one. I bought a Bourjois that I didn’t much care for but it wasn’t the worst one I’d ever used. Then when I was ransacking the KIKO online sale I decided to try one of their Ultimate Pen Long Wear Eyeliner and its pretty damn good! Really inky and pigmented, doesn’t dry out mid use and the nib is wonderfully flexible. It is finer than the Eyeko one so might be a tiny bit trickier to use if you’re not used to it but I really like it. AND LOOK AT THE PRICE! Bargain-o-rama. Howeverrrrrrrr what I will say is that it’s not the most long lasting, which I think is actually true of most pens. It does tend to smudge a tiny bit and if you have slightly oily eyelids like me then you do get a bit of “eyeliner transfer” on your upper eyelid, however a little extra powder sorts that out.

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My experimentation finally lead me to the Soap & Glory Supercat Eyeliner which I think is my favourite of the lot. It’s very similar to the Eyeko one, if not identical. Easy to use and gives a great fluid line all for a very agreeable price.

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So yes I’m a convert. They won’t be fully replacing my gel liner as I just prefer the effect when doing a dramatic cat eye but they are great for doing a defined/ winged look for everyday, when you’re in a rush or throwing in your makeup bag to use out and about. Get me?  

 

2 Thingz

I was bit naughty today and picked up a couple of things in Boots that I really don’t need but really wanted to try.

The first is Indeed Lab’s Hydraluron which actually I do need because I don’t own any good serums and this is meant to be the absolute one. And it was on offer so instead of £20 something it was like £16 I LOVE YOU BOOTS!

And the second I actually don’t need because I already have 2 in different colours EXCEPT I DO because I own hardly any nude/ neutral lip products! ‘Tis of course the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet liquid lipstick thingy in Nude-ist! Luxurious, super pigmented, matte loveliness. Can’t wait to get my Kylie Jenner own with this bad boy.

And with that all justified I bid you Adieu!

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Nailed It!

OH DEAR, I haven’t blogged in ruddy ages because I got another job (yay and boo) and I am still at work now but it’s quiet so thought I would do a cheeky one.

So we all know I’m a massive shellac fan but I have really rekindled my love of normal nail polishes lately. One of them is an old fave, my gorgeous Lime Crime Pastelchio and then a few new ones…
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The first two are a couple of Bourjois ones that came in the goody bag at the Company Magazine Beauty Forum. One is a really inky black called Noir de Chine from the Ultra Shine So Laque! range and the other is a shimmery gold number which I can’t find a name for but is number 18 from their 1 Seconde Gel range. Both lasted quite well, I used my Sally Hansen Green Tea & Bamboo Strengthener as a base and top coat and they both look really nice and shiny.
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The second two are both Topshop. Now, I’ve never used Topshop polishes before and I was mildly disappointed by one aspect and v. impressed by others.
Lets start with the bad news first… They were both matte polishes, the first was a grey colour called Light Brizzle (which just doesn’t make any sense, lets be honest) and the second was a red called Cryptic. Basically they just weren’t as matte as I would have liked. They were matte but with a slight shine to them so it didn’t really look like they were supposed to be matte, just kind of looked like they were a bit cheap/ had been applied badly. The grey one looked ok to be fair but it didn’t really work with the red. Also the mate effect wore off quite quickly so they became more shiny as they day went on. In the end I just put a top coat over the red to make it properly shiny.
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Oh dear, think this was taken after getting home late on Saturday night… (They seem to come out a bit pinker tones in the pic, they are a much truer red in real life.)

The good news… Both colours are great! The grey has a kind of blueish/ indigo tone to it which was fab and looks really sophisticated (even on the likes of me!) and the red is a really great true red (doesn’t pull too blue or too orange so would suit most, if not all skin tones). The grey lasted ages! Like a week with only a few chips round the edge. Am on the 3rd day of wearing the red and it still looks great, in future I’ll just wear it as a normal nail polish with a top coat and not a matte.

I still love my shellac but my nails really needed a break plus it’s such a ball ache to take off properly that I just end up peeling it which really effs my poor nails up. It’s nice to have a break and be able to change colour around more often and with the Sally Hansen topcoat they haven’t been taking v. long to try so yeeeeaaahhhh.

In other news there is so much make-up I am craving at the mo like all the special edition Christmassy things and just general cult shizzle like Hourglass Ambient Light powders which cost a BOMB and Hydralauron which I don’t know if I really need to be honest but I just want it because I want it ahhhh!