Tom Ford Sable Smoke - The Perfect Nude

(Please excuse the horrible selfie, it was the most decent one believe it or not! Was having one of those days where the camera didn't agree with me...)

After having a horrible experience at a Tom Ford counter in the past, I have been holding off from going near one again. Rude and patronising sales assistants... there’s always one. I don’t quite understand why they’re so rude sometimes, I mean surely they get commission so wouldn’t they benefit from being nice rather than making you feel like you’re not wanted there? Anyway, I digress. If it hasn’t become apparent, I found my way back to a Tom Ford counter and swatched up a storm of nude lipsticks, but as soon as I came across Sable Smoke, the swatching stopped and I went straight to the till waving my bank card up in the air and screaming ‘take my money’. Ok not quite, but you get the gist.

First of all, let’s all acknowledge the packaging. There are some seriously sexy packagings out there, but Tom Ford definitely takes the cake. That gold detail on the corners is everything, and the TF embossed logo both on the lid and on the actual lipstick? Heaven! On to the shade itself, it’s more of a caramel-beige that is slightly similar to my natural lip colour only a little lighter. It’s the perfect accompaniment to whatever makeup/outfit you’re wearing, it adds a sense of sophistication but at the same time it’s also very effortless. The formula is very thick and can give you full coverage with just one swipe, although I always like to go for two or three. It’s very emollient and feels very comfortable on the lips, but I don’t feel like it actually moisturises my lips if that makes sense. The only downside for me is of course the price, £38 for a lipstick is absolutely ludicrous and the smell?! I know many people love this lipstick scent but to me it smells like gone off makeup. Like the makeup my mum kept from back in the day, it’s like synthetic vanilla and I’m really not a fan. The price and the scent are something I’m willing to overlook because the formula is just so beautiful and although the shade falls under the ‘beige-y brown’ category, I haven’t seen anything else like it. 

Have you tried Tom Ford makeup? If not, what brand are you currently loving?

Makeup Haul

I have been spending way too much money recently, but I couldn’t resist picking up a few more beauty bits. I swear us beauty addicts always find a way, or an excuse to buy more products, and I mean who has bills to pay or food in their cupboards anyway? Cereals or beans on toast for the rest of the month will suffice. Haha, just kidding! But yes, I have been telling myself those little white lies ‘I’ll just buy this and then I’ll be good for the rest of the month’ and treated myself to more makeup. 

This is going to be a bold statement, but the YSL Youth Liberator Serum Foundation is by far my favourite foundation ever! I have previously owned this, finished it and just had to repurchase. If you’re a reader of my blog you will have seen that I recently bought the By Terry Terrybly Densiliss base, but my skin and my foundation stash were crying to have this YSL bottle back. The packaging isn’t the most practical to travel with, but it looks super sexy on my dressing table. Just like the By Terry foundation, this is a skincare-makeup hybrid - I seem to be into that - it helps with firming the skin and minimising the appearance of wrinkles. The consistency is quite thick and creamy, it almost feels like you’re applying moisturiser. At first it feels quite wet against the skin, however it dries down pretty quickly. It offers a medium to full coverage which helps with evening out the skin and hiding any imperfections. The finish is what I love the most, it leaves me with the most lustrous skin, like I’m glowing from within. It’s pretty much well-rested, perfect skin in a bottle. I’ve struggled to find this foundation in stores and not all the shades seem to be available online either, I pray to the makeup Gods that they're not discontinuing this.

MAC Spice and Stripdown lip liners have been on my wishlist for a while now, but they were sold out everywhere! I managed to get my hands on Spice a couple of days after I posted about it on my wishlist post. I went into the MAC store and they had so many, it was like Spice heaven. They must’ve gotten a delivery that day because honestly, there was Spice everywhere. Stripdown however seemed to have fallen off the face of the earth. I was at the duty free section at Dublin airport and couldn’t see it out on display, but I asked the sales assistant if they had any and turns out they had two left tucked away in one of their drawers! Felt like the luckiest girl in the world LOL. Stripdown is more of a beige-y brown and Spice is a dark brown with a hint of orange and red, it’s a hard colour to describe but it looks stunning underneath nude lipsticks. 

Urban Decay Naked Skin concealer is something that has been raved about by everyone. I don’t usually give in to hypes, well actually I do, just very late down the line, but I’m running low on a couple of my favourites so I thought I’d give this a go. So far I have only used it once but was highly impressed. The amount of product on the doe foot applicator is enough to conceal under both eyes, it’s creamy, high coverage and highlights the under-eyes really well.

Last but definitely not least is the Tom Ford lipstick in Sable Smoke. I was at the Tom Ford counter swatching away nude lipsticks, but as soon as I came across this one I stopped. It was love at first swatch, it’s such a ‘me’ colour. There’s much more that I’d like to say about this but I love it to the point where I want to dedicate a whole post to it, so keep your eyes peeled.

What was your latest purchase?

Givenchy Makeup

So it would seem that I have been slacking when it comes to sticking to my blogging schedule. Gosh, life really does get in the way sometimes doesn’t it? I flew to Dublin on a work trip and forgot to schedule posts. What a terrible wanna-be blogger I am... 

Givenchy is a brand I’ve never heard much about. Up until recently I had never tried any of their makeup and hadn’t seen much hype around their products, but after hearing Victoria talk about how much she loved one of their Rouge Interdit Vinyl lipsticks it sparked my interest, so I went onto FeelUnique and picked up the lipstick she mentioned along with a bronzer. 

The last thing I need is a new lipstick, but the shade Rose Mutin looked so stunning on Victoria and the packaging was so beautiful that I couldn’t resist. Rose Mutin is a beautiful sheer baby pink shade that can be built up to a more intense colour. If you have fair skin I have no doubt that you’re absolutely going to love this, however against my olive complexion I find that it can look a little weird, so I usually use this in conjunction with a darker lip liner to help it look better against my skin tone. The formula is gorgeous, it’s very hydrating and smooth on the lips. In all honesty to me it feels more like a lip balm than a lipstick, and I love that.

Bronzer is a must when I’m doing my makeup. It’s a step I never miss, therefore bronzers are something I go through like crazy. Before purchasing this bronzer, I always went for cool-toned bronzers. I always thought cool tones looked the most natural, however, analysing all the times I sat out in the sun I was never left with a cool tone look on my face, instead I was left with bronzed cheeks that had a slight hint of red, and I kid you not, this bronzer is the perfect imitation of a real tan. It adds a gorgeous red-brown colour to the skin which honestly makes me look like I’ve been laying in the sun for a couple of hours even though I have been sat at home the whole day. When I wear this bronzer I almost always skip blush. There’s no need for it because this bronzer on its own looks natural and adds that hint of red that makes you look like you’ve already got a natural flush. I picked up the Poudre Bonne Mine in the shade 02 Douce Saison and when I first swatched it I thought it was going to be too light and too sheer. I was so wrong! The colour can be built up to whatever intensity, you can go for a lighter natural look, or you can keep reapplying until you look like you’ve been holidaying in the Maldives for a week. It never looks powdery or cakey, in fact, it adds a gorgeous glow to the cheeks. Brilliant formula, brilliant colour and brilliant packaging - look at that embossed logo! I’m seriously impressed.

Have you tried anything from the brand? What are your thoughts? 

Nails Inc Pro - Bond Street Mews

Dark brown and deep red nail polishes were my go-to when I was in college, for some reason I loved how they looked on me. Ever since I haven’t really gone back to wearing dark browns but I do still delve into the deeper reds from time to time. Of course during the warmer months I prefer the pastels or neons, but recently I have been completely into nude nails. The cappuccino, mauve and dusty rose shades are what I’ve been all about. There has been a standout polish for me, not only because the colour is amazing, but also because the formula is beyond incredible!

Nails Inc Pro nail polish in Bond Street Mews has been my current obsession. It’s a stunning dusty-rose with a hint of mauve (pretty much the exact same shade as OPI Dulce De Leche) which looks incredibly sophisticated on the nails. Every time I have this on I can’t stop staring at my nails, there’s something that draws me to the colour and that’s not something I say about many other nail polishes. The formula is incredible, it’s basically like a shellac manicure without the UV lamp. The colour is opaque, although I still like to add two coats for good measure, it has a wide brush which is slightly rounded at the bottom so there’s a smaller risk of painting outside the nail, and the most amazing part is that it lasts for a week without chipping. There are many other shades in the Pro collection ranging from baby pinks to pastel greens, pastel blues, dark reds and purples. The Pro range is available online here or at Sally’s. 

Have you tried any shades from this range? What do you think of the formula?

A Kick Ass Powder

Powders have never really been my thing. Not sure if it's because I'm afraid of looking cake-faced or if it's because I'm scared it will dry out my skin even further. There have only ever been two powders which I will happily use and they're the Chanel Les Beiges and MAC MSF. They do a perfect job at keeping my makeup in place and taking away any unwanted shine whilst still feeling comfortable on the face. These two powders match my skin perfectly, but I wanted to try something that was more on the yellow side so that it could brighten up the centre of my face and set my under eye area.

I've wanted to try the Soap & Glory Kick Ass powder for a while and actually went out to buy it but ended up coming home with One Heck of a Blot instead. I was so gutted when I realised I picked up the wrong product. It was a real 'doh' moment. Eventually I went back and got the correct one and I'm so glad I did. The first time I used it to set my concealer I used a brush and absolutely hated it. It felt heavy, super drying and extremely uncomfortable. I was dying to remove it by the end of the day. However the following day I thought I would try applying it using my damp beauty blender and it made a world of a difference. This powder really does get rid of all the shine, so if you like a matte finish you will totally love this. Personally I love using it mainly on my chin to get rid of any shine from the foundation and under my eyes after I apply concealer. I think girls with oily skin will fall in love immediately, but for the dry skin girls I would say avoid using this with a brush as it can come off quite heavy, but with a damp beauty blender it's absolute perfection. It makes the under eyes look flawless, doesn't settle into fine lines and not to mention it photographs beautifully. At only £12 it's definitely a must!

On My Wishlist

It is absolutely chucking it down with rain as I write this. What is with the weather? I shouldn’t be so surprised really, we sometimes get all four seasons in a day... Got to love England LOL! So today’s post is a first for me but I’d love to make it a regular thing if you’d be interested, it’s my wishlist. I promise they won’t always be filled with designer/luxury pieces, but these past two months or so I have been completely obsessed with these specific items. Hopefully this wishlist inspires you in some way, if not, I hope you enjoy reading it anyway. 

Celine Sunglasses - Ugh, I have been searching high and low for these! They seem to be sold out everywhere - story of my life. I’ve seen many other colours in stock but I really want the black pair. They look so chic and I swoon every time I see a picture of someone wearing them. They’re quite big which I love, I’m really not fond of small sunglasses. So please, please, please, if any of you know where I can find a black pair (that’s in stock), let me know!

Nicholas Kirkwood Loafers - I have been absolutely smitten with this style of shoe since Victoria mentioned them in one of her videos. I’m usually not a fan of flat shoes, I’ve always been a Converse, sandals or boots kind of girl but these shoes are right up my street. I’m lusting over the white pair but once again, sold out. However, I want these so badly that I’m considering getting them in a nude-pink shade if the white ones don’t come back in stock anytime soon. 

Chanel Espadrilles - I know these are a love-hate thing, but I have been a huge fan of the design since forever. They look like something I will wear to death because they appear to be so comfortable. I can already picture myself rocking them with denim jeans and an oversized tee. At first I was really into the canvas style, but considering they’re £300+ it seems a bit absurd paying that much money for a piece of fabric, so I’ve been all about the white and black leather. Look at them though! I’m seriously hoping and wishing that they have my size in stock when I pop into a Chanel store. Speaking of the Chanel store, the thought of going there really scares me. I’m by no means rich, so it’s quite intimidating going there to buy something. Does anyone else feel this way about designer stores?

MAC Spice Lip Liner - I’ve wanted this colour since Charlotte Crosby's makeup artist mentioned this on Instagram. I’m hoping it can help with blending in some of the more concealer-like lipsticks in my collection. I struggled to find this lip liner online and in stores for a few months now, however just now while typing this, I went on a couple of websites and it’s available on all of them! *rushes to make an order*

Kapten & Son Watch - Despite having very petite wrists, I do love myself a big watch. There’s something very sexy about a manly-looking watch on a woman, at least to me. I’m more into black watches at the moment for some reason and this one ticks all the boxes.

As you can see I’m very much into designer stuff at the moment. I don’t know what’s come over me but I even find myself dreaming about some of these items. It’s incredibly sad and embarrassing but unfortunately it’s true - I’ve dreamt about the Chanel espadrilles twice. I’m hoping this is a phase and once every item of this wish list is ticked off I can get back to my normal non-designer life... My bank account for sure hopes it’s a phase.

What’s on your wishlist?

Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipsticks

(Top to bottom, left to right; Stripped, Crush, Ashton, Soft Lilac and Kathryn)
The whole Instagram world seems to be going a bit nuts with the liquid lipsticks thing. There are selfies being taken left, right and centre of every female and their dogs pout. Anastasia Beverly Hills is a brand I haven’t tried much from but the few bits I own have seriously impressed me. It’s also a brand that isn’t readily available in the UK, you can get it from a few websites but they don’t sell the entire range. After seeing those endless selfies of girls and boys rocking the ABH Liquid Lipsticks, I hopped on to their website and picked out a few colours. 

They shipped out to me really quick, I had seen so many people complaining about how long their lipsticks took to arrive and how ABH customer service was pants, but luckily I didn’t have the same issue. It took them around a week to get here, which wasn’t at all bad. The downside was the ridiculous amount of custom fees I had to pay; £30.01. Excuse me? But I’m glad to report it was worth it, still outrageous though. I went pretty safe when it came to picking out the shades I wanted. I went for some nudes, a lilac and a pinky-red, but they are all such beauties. 

The lipsticks are housed in a beautiful glass tube and come with a doe-foot applicator. Personally I find the packaging very slick. When you remove the wand from the packaging, there will be quite a lot of product loaded on the applicator, so always make sure you remove any excess before going onto the lips. The colours are very opaque and I find that I can fill in my whole lips without having to dip the applicator back in to get more product. I like to start in the centre of my top and bottom lip and then turn the brush on its side to trace along my lip line. You need to be careful with the darker shades because if you mess up and get it on your skin, it will stain. 

One thing to bare in mind, they do set to a matte finish so if your lips are slightly dry, it can become prominent once the lipstick sets, but as long as you have well exfoliated lips you won’t have that problem. I have seen reviews where people complain about the longevity of this product, however I can’t relate, the only colour that didn’t last that well on me was Crush but apart from that shade, they all last really well and wear off beautifully. They can feel a tad drying but they don’t look dry. On me, the nude lipsticks last around 4-5h before they need touching up and the darker shade (Kathryn) around 7h. I can eat and drink without any fear that this lipstick will rub off, seriously, you need a good oil based cleanser to remove this. When it comes to reapplying, you won’t have to remove whatever amount of lipstick you have left, the second layer will go on smoothly over the top and won’t look patchy or flakey. 

The downside for me was of course the custom fees, it sucks having to pay to receive a parcel, especially when I had already paid almost $19 for shipping, but I guess it worked out for me as I thoroughly enjoy the product, otherwise I would’ve been extremely upset. I will say though that after using these lipsticks for more than three days in a row, I can tell that my lips are starting to dry up quite badly, and if you look closely you can see some cracking in the pictures. So as I said, make sure your lips are well moisturised before using this, or any other matte lipstick for that matter. As with everything in life, we’re all going to have a difference of opinion, but I really, really like these and I’m gutted I didn’t pick up more shades. Hopefully they’ll come to the UK soon and I can use the £30 custom fees to get myself another lipstick or two. 

Have you tried these? What are your thoughts?

Spice That's A Lot Like Soar

Top: Spice - Bottom: Soar
For the last few months I have been trying to get my hands on MAC Soar lip liner. It’s been on my wishlist for quite some time but it seems to always be sold out online and in stores. I don’t even know how this colour got famous, I’m guessing it had something to do with Kylie Jenner. Everything regarding lip colours always seems to revolve around Kylie at the moment, and who can blame her? Her lips always look amazing. Of course as you’d imagine, I found this when I wasn’t looking. I popped into Debenhams with a friend of mine and spotted the last Soar lip liner at the MAC counter. It was meant to be.

I have been using Soar a ton, it’s the perfect match for most nude lipsticks I own and it’s also really creamy. However, a couple of days ago I was browsing the makeup section in ASDA (as yo do), and found this cheeky lip liner by Rimmel in the shade 011 Spice. It is the perfect match for Soar, a long-lasting pinky brown that adds the most gorgeous colour to the lips. Rimmel Spice is just a tad lighter when swatched, but on the lips you can’t tell them apart. The price difference is huge as you may have figured - £12.50 for MAC and £2.99 for Rimmel. They’re pretty much the same product with different packaging, so if you’re still trying to get your hands on Soar, stop looking, save your pennies and get the Rimmel one instead.

I’m currently coveting Spice lip liner also by MAC, so if any of you know of a dupe available in the UK, let me know.

How To Survive A Long Distance Relationship

I’m trying to type this with my fingers crossed because I don’t want to jinx it, but I have been in a successful relationship for over six years. It’s crazy to say that out loud. I Sandra, 24 years old have been in a relationship for six years. But you know what? When you know, you know. I never quite understood what people meant when they said that, but it wasn’t until it happened to me that I realised that it isn’t something you can comprehend unless you experience it yourself. 

I met my boyfriend through mutual friends on Hi5. Remember Hi5? Good old days. We started messaging each other and became really good friends. Conversation between us was so easy, we used to stay up until ridiculous o’clock on MSN and we would sometimes only go to bed when the sun started to rise. We were online friends for a year and a half and had never met each other in person as we lived in different countries. We finally met in person when I went for a quick trip to Portugal with my brother. We met at the airport which is funny because we’re now both in the aviation industry, and I still remember what he was wearing; a black and grey striped jumper, dark jeans and brown boots. I’ve kept his jumper ever since despite his best efforts to throw it away. It’s really old but I can’t part with it, it has too much sentimental value to me.

As soon as I saw him I felt safe. You know that feeling you get when your mum or dad gives you a hug? That feeling of security, that no one can ever harm you because that person will always be there to protect you? That’s how I felt. And I still feel like that today. We were in a long distance relationship for two and a half years, crazy I know. Looking back now I can’t believe we made it. Long distance is hard work and it’s definitely not for everybody. You really have to give it your all and be 100% committed to that person. Last year my boyfriend had to go away again and we were apart for almost a year, so it’s safe to say we are pretty much experts when it comes to handling long distance, so today I’m going to be sharing my tips on how to make a long distance relationship work.

Make sure they’re worth it. I know we all look for different things in a partner and the idea of a ‘perfect’ relationship varies from person to person, but no matter what kind of relationship you’re in your partner should always treat you right, make you feel loved, show their affection towards you everyday and should always respect you. I honestly don’t have time for these little boys who think that having every girl under the sun is attractive. No, it’s embarrassing! This whole ‘lad culture’ is something I don’t entertain, I don’t find it appealing and I wouldn’t want this kind of man in my life. What I’m trying to say is listen to your gut instinct. If you already knew this boy/girl had a reputation and they’re not willing to change for you, move on. Trust in relationships is already hard work, but being in different cities or countries can make it even harder. Make sure this person is someone who you can trust 110% and that never makes you feel like you’re less than amazing.

Skype. Skype. Skype. Anything with a camera really. It’s hard not seeing your other half in person, but Skype or FaceTime is the next best thing. I can’t tell you how many hours me and my boyfriend spent on Skype. We used to Skype every day without fail for at least an hour - it was usually more like five though. Personally I think it’s crucial that you see your partner everyday through a camera, it helps you catch up with each others life making you feel more connected in return. Also, long distance is something not everybody takes seriously, so seeing each other on video regularly reminds you both that you’re in it for the long run.

Keep in touch throughout the day. The less you talk, the more you drift apart. Don’t let that happen. Life can get pretty hectic, so it’s of the upmost importance that you send each other texts throughout the day. We’re only human and forgetting things is easy when leading a busy lifestyle, so texting throughout the day even if it’s just a simple ‘I miss you’ lets your partner know that they’re on your mind. 

Save up for flight tickets. I was still in college and he was still in uni, so getting money was no easy task for us. He had a part time job and my parents were wiling to help me out, but it can get a little expensive. Me and my boyfriend tried to see each other every month. We’d take turns, so one month he’d come here and the next month I’d go there. It showed commitment from both parts which I believe played a huge part in how our relationship worked out.

Be transparent. Tell them everything that’s on your mind, any insecurities, any doubts, any questions that are unanswered. Being truthful and transparent is key in any relationship but especially in a long distance one. If someone tries to make a move on you, tell your partner. It’ll show them that they can count on you to tell them absolutely everything. It’ll boost their trust in you and it’ll also probably cause a little jealously. Jealously in moderation is always healthy. Muahaha.

Be ready to move. Living in a different city or country isn’t the ideal scenario, so be ready to pack up your bags and move. My boyfriend moved to the UK for me and that’s something that I can never thank him enough for. It takes courage to leave your friends and loved ones behind but if you’re serious about making a relationship work, then you need to be ready to move. Moving to a different country doesn’t mean you need to start living together right away, it just means that you can see more of each other and see if there’s potential for moving in together. 

These were some of the things that helped my relationship massively and I hope it helps yours too. Of course every relationship is different and what worked for me may not work for you, but just remember that if things don’t work out for one reason or other, it’s ok! As long as you know that you gave it your all and tried your best, you won’t get any ‘what if’ questions playing on your mind down the line. To be completely honest I got to a point where I wanted to give up, all the hours on Skype, all the texting, all the travelling was starting to get to me and I wasn’t enjoying how time consuming the relationship was. Like I said, long distance isn’t for everyone. I can understand why some people give up after a while, but I am beyond happy that we stuck through it. I am the happiest I’ve ever been and he was definitely worth waiting for.

What are your thoughts on long distance? :)

Guerlain Waterproof Mascara

I only started to venture into the makeup world when I was around 19. Before then the most amount of makeup I ever wore was black eyeliner, along with a bit of concealer. Nothing else. I also made the mistake of wearing that dreaded blue eyeshadow from time to time but let's leave that in the past where it belongs. I first wore foundation when I was 19 and only started wearing mascara at around the same time. That’s right, I used to wear black eyeliner, concealer and no mascara. Honestly, where were beauty videos when you needed them?

I am a huge advocate of high end mascaras, not because I like spending money on them, but because none of the cheaper alternatives done anything for my lashes. However, that has changed in the last couple of months. I'll be posting about my favourite drugstore mascaras in a future post, but today the star of the show is the Guerlain Maxi Lash Waterproof mascara. I saw Victoria use this in one of her videos and fell in love with how long and voluminous it made her eyelashes look. I bought one for myself and I must admit that at first I was less than impressed. In fact, I tried it that one time and immediately put it down, swapped over to one of my drugstore faves and never picked it up again - until recently. 

I used this mascara again before heading out for coffee with some friends and let's just say that my opinion of this changed drastically, making it one of my favourite mascaras up to date. The first time I used it the formula wasn’t quite dry enough for me. Of course with it being waterproof it’s drier than most mascaras right off the bat, but still wasn’t dry enough for my liking. I really enjoy a dry formula as I find them easier to work with. I had never been disappointed in a high end mascara before and this wasn't going to be the first.

As usual I used my Shu Uemura eyelash curler and went in with the mascara, only this time it gave me incredible length, lots of volume and held the curl like no other. In fact you better be prepared to go to town with your makeup remover, because this mascara isn't going anywhere. The packaging is beautiful, very sleek, very chic as you would expect it to be from Guerlain, and the actual ‘bottle’ itself is smaller than most mascaras meaning that the wand is also shorter. You can get in right at the root of the lash without having the rest of the wand go all over your face. This is also very buildable, one coat will give you definition and curl and two/three coats will give you volume and immense length. Two thumbs up from me.

What mascara are you loving? 

Nail Envy

Although I’ve always had relatively strong nails, they somehow always break on the corners and often quite far down making it a painful experience. I must avow that working with metal trolleys and closing overhead compartments hasn’t really helped with keeping my nails in their best shape. Back in 2013 I watched a nail care routine on Youtube where they mentioned how much stronger their nails were thanks to the OPI Nail Envy. I picked one up for myself and haven’t used anything else since.

It’s a strengthening treatment that helps with chipping, breakage and overall health of the nails. The application method is quite precise; apply two coats on the first day, followed by another coat every other day for 7 days. After a week you remove the nail polish and start the treatment all over again. Initially I done this religiously for about six to seven months. Now I find that I can just apply two coats at the beginning of the week, paint my nails with whatever colour and that protects my nails from any strain that they might go through. 

I can definitely tell a difference when I haven’t used this in a long time, my nails become more fragile and break a lot quicker. Of course you can’t just rely on the product and expect miracles, you still need to take good care of your nails. Always make sure your nails are nicely trimmed, cuticles are moisturised, no sharp edges and don’t put a lot of pressure on them. Personally I like to keep my nails in a round shape as I find that they don’t get caught on things as much. 

I’ve gone through two bottles of the Original Nail Envy and most recently I picked up the Matte version. Matte isn’t the word I would use to describe it. It’s definitely not as shiny as the original formula, but it’s not matte either, there’s still a sheen to it. I quite like it that way, but it’s something to keep in mind if you’re looking for something that’s discrete. I can’t tell a difference in performance, they’re both amazing. Using this regularly can keep my nails long for at least six months before they break, which with my job, is quite an impressive amount of time. Unfortunately I have recently cut my nails because two of them gave up on me and I really don’t like having a mix of long and short, so here’s a picture from last month when they looked a lot better than they do now. Please excuse the iPhone quality.
Have you tried it? What are your thoughts? :)

Terrybly Densiliss Foundation

It pains me to say that I recently finished not only one, not two, but three of my favourite foundations. I have now been juggling between Nars Sheer Glow and Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk - which are also front runners, but none of them are the correct match for me at the moment. I have been mixing the two in the morning but I must admit that it requires too much effort for someone who sometimes has to wake up at 4am. And yes, I do have many other foundations that suit my current skin tone, but none of them excite me. You know when you look in your wardrobe and see many beautiful tops, but you don’t fancy wearing any of them? I’m like that with makeup. I guess what I am trying to say is that I used this as an excuse to pick up yet another makeup product. Don’t tell my boyfriend! 

For years I have heard people raving about the By Terry Terrybly Densiliss foundation. To be frank, I was rather skeptical at first due to the hefty price tag, but for someone who’s obsessed with skin as much as I am, spending a bit more on a good base isn’t much of an issue. I got matched by a lovely sales assistant in Space NK and came home with the shade 7.5 Golden Glow. This foundation is more of a makeup/skincare hybrid. It’s a serum foundation meaning that it has skincare properties which are meant to help with firming the skin and wrinkle prevention. The consistency is quite thick, almost like a moisturiser, but it has a real luxe feel to it so it almost feels like you’re giving yourself a skin treatment whilst applying your makeup. 

I find that when I apply this using my fingers I get more of a light, everyday base, whereas if I use a brush or a beauty blender I can really build it up to a medium/full coverage. It’s slightly heavier than what I’m used to but I’m thoroughly enjoying the more dolled-up look. I read reviews where some people mentioned it could be a bit too much for dry skin, but coming from someone who is as dry as a desert, I think this foundation is brilliant. There was one time where I applied more than I desired  (a little goes a long way) and it did look a tad cakey when the sun hit my face, but as along as you apply a suitable amount, you won’t have that problem. Because it’s also a serum and not just a foundation, it doesn’t stick to any dry areas and doesn’t become patchy throughout the day. It’s one of those foundations that I can wear for an extended period of time without thinking about how much I’m dying to remove it. I can’t feel it sitting on my skin, nor can I feel any tackiness when I touch my face. 

There are currently 13 shades available ranging from light to dark, and the tones are mainly pink. I have olive coloured skin so this was a worrying discovery, but I found that the foundation adapted to my skin colour and the pink seemed to disappear. At £78 (£76 on some websites) a bottle it’s safe to say that it’s one of the most expensive foundations out there, but if you’re looking for good skin in a bottle and are willing to splurge a bit more in a luxury foundation, I’d highly recommend it.

Have you tried it? What are your thoughts?

Hair That's Pillow Proof

As bad as it sounds, I try to avoid going anywhere near a shower when I know my hair needs washing. It's not the washing part that daunts me, it’s the drying process. If you have long hair I’m sure you understand. It’s bizarre looking back now as I used to wash my hair every other day. How on earth did I have time? Not only was it time consuming, it also weakened my hair and made it oiler a lot quicker, so I narrowed my hair washes down to two a week and my locks feel so much bouncier. To maintain a clean and somewhat presentable mop I have been using the Redken Pillow Proof Dry Shampoo

I have tried some cheaper options but they all leave some sort of residue behind which makes it hard when I want to run my fingers through my hair. With certain dry shampoos I feel like they make my hair feel and look worse than it did to begin with. Not to mention the horrible white/grey cast some of them leave behind. Pillow Proof is my favourite so far. I normally use this two days after washing my hair which is when it starts to need some attention. It has a very light mist, gets rid of all the grease and it’s also invisible which is great for anyone with dark tresses. It adds a little volume to the roots but I still get great manageability after using it. Couldn't recommend it enough, definitely a must have in anyone’s haircare routine.

Mastering The Brows

When it comes to makeup I'm not ashamed to say that brows are something I struggle with. My natural brows were always very full and if I hadn't gone crazy with the tweezers Cara Delevingne would be out of business! Up until recently I would either use powders or pencils to fill in my brows but they never really gave me the definition I was after - Probably because I was useless at using both.

I tend to go through phases with people on YouTube and right now I'm having a moment with Victoria from Inthefrow. God isn't she just stunning? Her style, face and hair is everything! I've probably watched all of her videos in the last two weeks... I promise I've left the house! She always praises the Giorgio Armani Eye & Brow Maestro so while I was at the Armani counter getting matched to the new Maestro Glow foundation I also got the makeup artist to do my eyebrows and came home with the shade Wenge Wood. She also recommended I get the brow brush from bareMinerals.

Words can't describe how incredible this is. It's a hybrid eye product which can be used on the brows, as an eyeshadow base or as a liner. I've tried all three and love them all, but I use it mainly on my brows. It's a cream texture that sets into place and keeps the hairs down. I use the product to trace out my brow hairs and fill in the sparse areas. Wenge Wood is a dark ash brown so I have to use a light hand with this otherwise my brows can look a little drawn on. I've been rocking fierce, fleek-y brows (in a messy sort of way) and I'm loving it. I thought it would be a bit faff-y to work with and that it would take me ages to get my brows done but it's the opposite, I've never done them quicker. The lasting power is out of this world, you will need a good oil-based cleanser to remove this.
The bareMinerals Brow Master Brush is also incredible. It's double ended which is literally everything to me. Nothing annoys me more than trying to find a spooly when I'm half way through doing my makeup. The actual brush size is also great, the hairs are soft but very dense so it's easy to get the definition I want. Now that I've tried and love this brow cream I've placed an order of the Dip Brow Pommade by Anastasia Beverly Hills. I chose a lighter shade to see if it makes a difference in how drawn on my brows look. Let me know if you would like to see a comparison.

Hello. Good Morning. Good Afternoon. Good Evening.

Seeing as its my first post on here I decided to share with you 25 facts about myself. They’re all a bit random but I figured it would be a good opportunity for you to get to know me a little bit better.

1. I have size 3 feet, but I sometimes need to go down to a size 2 for slip on heels. 
2. When I was younger I used to collect pyjamas.
3. I was very blunt as a child and used to embarrass my mum in front of her friends by telling them that they couldn’t cook, or that their houses were dirty and needed a clean. Sorry mum!
4. Every since dying my hair for the first time in 2010, I can never decide between being a blonde or a brunette.
5. The three things I’m most afraid of are spiders, deep water and heights.
6. Although I love confectionary, I’ll always pick crisps over chocolate.
7. I’ve never attended a gym class because I can't do crunches. My back doesn’t leave the floor.
8. When I find something really funny, I'll keep laughing about it for ages.
9. I’m starting to develop an obsession for designer shoes.
10. I’m socially awkward and struggle to make conversation with people I’ve just met, but once you get to know me I’m pretty cool. If I do say so myself.
11. I have a terrible habit of picking the skin around my nails.
12. I like my feet way more than I like my hands.
13. I suffer with trypophobia (fear of small holes). It makes me feel extremely uncomfortable.
14. I struggle falling asleep if I’m not holding on to something e.g. a teddy bear. 
15. I have never travelled outside of Europe. Hoping that changes soon.
16. Seeing a homeless person honestly breaks my heart.
17. I don’t like it when people touch my face without warning/permission #germaphobe
18. I love dogs and can’t wait to get my own.
19. Me and my boyfriend were in a long distance relationship for almost three years.
20. Christmas is my favourite time of the year. Nothing beats a good German Market.
21. My purpose at the gym is to gain weight.
22. When I left college I got offered a job at the school to become a teaching assistant.
23. I tan really easily. 15 minutes in the sun would be enough for me to get a tan line.
24. I love pasta. Any pasta. All the pasta.
25. I don’t like cheese but I love watching people eat it.

Hope you enjoyed these little random facts about me. Let me know if you share any of the above. Trypophobia anyone? 
© Sandra F. Silva

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