Review : MAC Make Up Session



Make Over or should that be MAC Over?

For Christmas, my father in law bought me a voucher for a MAC session!

Oh how excited I was about all that lovely MAC make up!

Lets be honest now ladies, MUCA (My code for – make up counter assistants) do have a reputation of being snooty orange faced clowns right? Remember that Fast Show sketch? (YOUTUBE)… well this was playing heavily on my mind.

I have about 70% of MACs regular range of eyeshadows and pigments and a healthy dose of their lippies and gloss’s so I didn’t want the kind of make up lesson you’d give to a 15yr old with her first lippy, but I also didn’t want to be brushed aside and given the same look I could do every day.

Sunday 6th February at 11:00 – Judgement Day! Dun dun duuuun!

When I sat down with my MUCA, she was amazing. She told me she’s known as Pink Sarah and what an absolute doll she was! I wish I could have taken her home with me! She put me at ease instantly when I told her I didn’t want to look like a clown. We had a good laugh over my trepidation about the session and she did her best to put me at ease.

I explained to Sarah that I have very rosy cheeks and as such my main goal for the session was to finally find a properly matched foundation to give me maximum coverage without looking like a mask so that I could wear blushers!

Sarah ran through a few foundations and let me choose which one I felt most comfortable with (NW20) and I have to say I’m insanely impressed! I have not tried MAC foundations before, with having problem skin I avoid introducing new (and expensive) products which may cause flare ups but almost 2 weeks on of daily wear I have nothing to write home about.. Yes that’s right, ive worn it every day! The first time in about 4.5yr! It’s a BIG achievment for me and my stupid face!

Sarah asked me what kind of style of eyes I go for and after I explained my usual style and colour preference she asked if I was feeling brave enough for a bold purple ‘daytime’ look. Confident that she’d not make me look like Krusty the Klown I was game for her to go to town on my eyes!

WOWOWOW! < That’s all I can say! I associate bold purples with night times but Sarah worked her magic on me and I had a beautifully vivid smoked purple eye with bold tones running through. She was attentive to ask about my eyewear (I’m a speccy 4 eyes) and explained how to create a bold eye that was maximised by my frames. It was a revelation to me as I’m prone to applying my eyes as if I was wearing my contacts and then just shoving my glasses back on!

All in all I was very very happy wth my session and felt relieved I’d been brave and gone through it. I was grateful she didn’t try to teach me to suck eggs, but I did pick up a few tips I’d not thought about before that Ive used again since. She wasn’t pushy or forceful when it came to deciding which products I would like to buy (£98.50 of goodies for the record… ooopsie!)

Sarah was an absolute sweetheart and I have to say, after previous VERY frosty service from the MAC ladies she was perfect in every way. This was reaffirmed when on returning to MAC a week later to swap a dupe eyeshadow I’d bought after the session, she made a beeline to me and gave me the warmest greeting I think ive ever had and checked how I felt after id got home with the make up she applied. Such a lovely lady!

For all you North East ladies, I cannot recommend Sarah (Ask for Pink Sarah) in Fenwicks in Newcastle highly enough. She is amazing and a real credit to the brand, if this is the quality of representation they offer. The other girls on stand could take a leaf out of her book for customer service.

I was actually so impressed with Sarah I have wrote an email of commendation to both Fenwicks & MAC directly!!!

After a slight absence from MAC-love (due to shoddy service)…I’m back with a bang! Now where is that Chrome eyeshadow and Venetian lipglass!!

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Review : Boots Cold Cream

Review : Boots Cold Cream
Baby it’s Cold (Cream) in here…..
 
Sorry for the picture, I had to borrow it from Google

This is probably quite late but I have been giving it a few weeks to settle in to my routine to see how I get on with it!

After doing a bit of blog-loving and googlizing (yes it’s a word, I say so!) for a new cleanser and moisturiser combo suitable for sensitive skin, I came across lots of reviews for Ponds Cold Cream used as a hot cloth cleanser.

Having super sensitive skin, when I get a flare up, I layer my face in Aqueous Cream or calamine so I was hoping it would have the same thick, cooling effect.

After a trip to Mecca (aka Boots) I settled upon their own brand Cold Cream as I thought it was less money to waste should it not be right for me. I dutifully trouped off to Asda living and bought a giant pack of baby muslins for £3 and cut them down to face size seeing as the Boots ones were so expensive.

I’d been reading up on what I needed to do so I gave it a whirl in the following order. By no means is this the definitive how-to but this is how I got my best results……..

1. Apply a layer of CC to your face avoiding your eyes. I use a thicker layer depending on how much make up im wearing or how dry my face is. It’s quite a prescriptive method so you can tailor it to suit your own skin


2. Leave the cream to sit on the face without rubbing in for long enough for the hot tap to get super hot. Soak the muslin cloth in the hot water and drape it over the face. Pat gently to make contact on cheeks and forehead. NOTE – please make sure the hot cloth isn’t too hot otherwise you’ll burn your pretty little face!

3. I usually sit on the side of the bath until the cloth no longer feels warm and then I used the cloth to wipe off all the CC residue still present on my face. While wiping, I do a light sweep over my eyes to remove make up and I haven’t had any stinging or redness from doing it and no trouble with contact lenses in.

4. I finish with a brisk splash of cold water which, despite probably not being true, feels like it tightens everything up on my face and makes me feel a bit cleaner… if that makes sense?!

The CC leaves a very fine film of moisture behind on the skin which you can feel gently sinking in to your skin for some time afterwards. If I’m feeling particularly dry and dehydrated I apply an extra moisturiser but most of the time find that the left over CC is more than enough to keep my skin feeling plump young and moisturised.

Why oh why didn’t someone tell me about this before! Damn you all!

I’ve been using the Boots Cold Cream since the beginning of the year and I have to say I havent had any face-wash related allergy flare ups or issues at all and as a result I’m not going to try to the Ponds cream. It’s practically twice the price and I find it hard to believe it’s twice as good as this bad boy!

To make it a fair review though, here’s the pros and cons!

Cons

1. The smell is overpoweringly flowery and has that “grandma” smell about it. It does subside very quickly but the strong smell in the jar might put others off

2. The jar is beautifully retro with a 1920s vibe (to me anyways) but it is a nightmare to scoop out the cream if you have to do more than 1 dip. It tips over very easily and with it having a flared fluted top, I suspect it will be hard to get the dregs out when its almost empty. My jar has rolled off my bathroom counter while trying to use it more times than I think I’ve dyed my hair (A LOT!)

3. Maybe Boots could stock good value muslins along side the cold cream on the display?

4. The product is not marketed and just lives on the bottom shelf in the beauty aisle. On quizzing my beauty obsessed friends none of them had heard of Boots own brand cold cream or even its uses.

 Pros

1. The price! What more do I need to say about this? It’s a super duper bargain and Boots have got this spot on.

2. Despite the con above about the packaging… the jar is beautifully styled and very retro. It looks like a little treasure next to the sink and doesn’t look budget at all. I was expecting a utilitarian tub similar to Aqueous cream

3. The moisturising effect from the CC can be felt several hours later unlike most moisturisers I’ve tried

4. This truly is a gem for us sensitive skinned ladies. I don’t know what it is about it but it seems to tone down some of the red on my cheeks and forehead I usually experience after cleansing my face.

All in all, this is an amazing product and I just wish I’d known about it sooner! It has turned in to my Holy Grail product. I have purchased the No7 hot cleanser to try once my CC has run out… but the question is…do I want to mess with perfection?!

Well done Boots… WELL DONE!

Products Mentioned – links

Boots Cold Cream – £2.42
Boots Muslin Squares – 6 for £7.14
Asda Muslin Squares – 3 for £3 – I got about 12 squares from each cloth!!!

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Review : LUSH Dream Cream

Review : LUSH Dream Cream

I happened upon this body lotion by accident! I had a scary bad reaction to a sample of their Angles On Bare Skin and due to being so freaked out I emailed their customer service to let them know how severe it had been.

The customer service was fab and within a couple of days I had in my hands a lovely complimentary gift box of ‘soothing’ items to try.

Well after literally being burnt by Lush before I decided not to subject my face and delicate skin again and have not used any of the items I was sent except for the Dream Cream lotion.



I find the smell of most Lush items very off-putting which is why I have never bought anything to use on myself (except my lip scrub!) but the smell of this lotion was reasonably tolerable so I thought I’d go in for a little swatch on my hand to see how I fared. The cream soaked in evenly and was nice and thick and did indeed feel soothing. After an hour my skin looked as God intended it so I slathered some cream on to my scaly dry elbows, the dry skin sucked the cream up like there was no tomorrow!

I’m quite excited to be able to wear this lotion but I do n’t think I’ll over do it as I was more conscious of the smell when it was loaded on both arms. Early days but my elbows feel better already!

Watch this space!!!

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Review : Aussie Take the heat leave in spray


I am a great fan of Aussies line of 3 minute miracles and their super human conditioning powers but the smell always puts me off reaching for my bottles unless I absolutely need to. I love how the smell does actually linger in the hair, can’t fault it for that, its just a little too over powering for me.

Whilst on my mission to get my hair back to tip top peak condition I picked this spray up in Boots to give my current heat protection / leave in conditioner combo an extra boost.

The first thing that hits me about this dinky little spray is the smell! It smells deliciously fruity and fresh which I absolutely love. It’s light and delicate without being cloying.

The smell really is amazing and my favourite thing about this whole product! Who cares what other magic it can work as long as it smells this good!

I use the Aussie spray when my hair is towel dry with a liberal spritz over the mid to ends and on my fringe as these are the areas that take the most abuse.

My hair dries to a beautiful slinky finish and I’m convinced I don’t need to work the hair as much with my straighteners / dryer to get the desired effect but that could be my imagination!

I haven’t noticed a massive improvement because I don’t heat style my hair every day but when I do use this spray there is a noticeable difference to the hair texture and condition.

This is a brilliant product for its price and I’d definitely re-purchase it when it runs out.

Question is, do I want to try the rest of the Take the Heat range? Or stick with my SLS free current choice? Decisions!

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Ding Dong….. but are the bells going to chime?

Ding Dong….. but are the bells going to chime?

It’s rapidly approaching my 4th wedding anniversary (and our 9th year together) and it’s got me thinking, which makes a pleasant change from my usual vacuous state eh?!
Is marriage just a big jolly day out? Your wedding day is always referred to as the biggest day of your life. But is marriage an outdated institution in the 21st century or is it still relevant in today’s society? 
 
It’s the classic happy ending of every story, regardless of the medium, on paper, on the big screen, heavily lit on a west end stage or in an idle day dream while sitting on the 25a bus home.
The presiding message is that love is completed by marriage… and then followed by babies and the rest of your life together until the day you both check out.
Does anyone stop to think what happens at the end of the happy ending? What happens in the after part of happily ever after? No, I suspect not. It’s just an excuse for a big (and heinously expensive) family party. Would it not be cheaper to just have a big house party of hire out the local working men’s club?!!
But what happens after the happy ever after? Is marriage actually any more than just a nice day out for family and friends these days? 
When you turn on the telly or open a glossy magazine, the people pioneering this happily ending jolly wedded bliss only seem to last as long as it takes for the ink to dry on their Hello Magazine exclusive or the scabs to heal on their latest tattoo declaring their love. (Do you Remember Johnny Depps Wino Forever debacle or Angelina Jolie’s Billy Bob tattoo removal?)
Take for example, off the top of my head, Avril & Deryck, Chantelle & Preston or Cheryl and Ashley.
Standing there in your silly frock, in the eyes of the Lord / Law (depends what your flavour is), does ‘til death do us part’ really only mean “until I get bored, you get baby fat, take up golf, get a beer belly, I’ve spent all our money or we’ve had a small fight over the dishes”? If so, what’s the point in bothering in the first place eh?!
In a 2001 survey, marriage hit an all time low on a sweeping decline that started waaaaaaay back in the late 1890s!!  Over 1/3 of people surveyed believed marriage was an outdated institution.
It was also found the average age of men for getting married is 35 and for women it is 33
Marriage was originally set up as a business transaction moving the bride from one family to another, usually at great profit or value (think of dowries).
In days of yore, it bound the woman to the man with financial obligations, attaching her to her husband’s side, her only value and use was running a house hold, having his babies and making their new family unit. Back then, I suspect divorce did not exist as a man owned his wife, and if she wanted to leave she’d have no support, money or even a hope of doing so. Imagine how scary that would be if it was still the case. It’s not the case though thankfully and women are just as free as men, so in theory if women (both partners in fact) have the choice to leave, does this not render the concept of marriage as out dated?
In a quote from an article on Social Science from a Midlands University : 
 
‘Historically, the decline of religion is an important factor for the majority of the population. The idea of a union blessed by God with a spiritual element to it has decreased dramatically.’ 
In the current day and age it seems buying a house, getting a dog, booking a holiday in advance, getting shared car finance and ultimately having a baby are ‘the new black’…. the new terms of commitment over taking the concept or marriage.
My personal view on marriage  is that if you were truly committed to someone, love them and want to share the rest of your life with them, then you don’t need a ring and a ceremony and a piece of paper. 
Yes marriage gives financial security to couples should a split occur or children come along, but just because you’re married, it doesn’t seem to mean you’re together forever.
Hell, I never had those day dreams that most girls have in their childhood of the big fairy princess wedding, the big white poofy dress and my prince charming proposing on one knee. For reference… I always wanted a bad boy like Johnny Castle to stand up to my dad and say no one puts Katie in a corner and then we all have a jolly big dance party.. but you can see I wasn’t the normal stereotypical little girl and I don’t think the Wife could lift me over his head in a sweeping lift LOL
I got married at 23 but prior to that I didn’t see the point. It’s just a piece of paper and a metal ring isn’t it? I never thought I’d find someone I could tolerate for long enough, or love enough to consider marrying.
That all changed when he proposed. That was it, I enjoyed the traditional sense of commitment and pride that he did want to join with me in that “life long” unity. Although it took us 5yr to actually marry, I have no regrets for nodding to such an ‘archaic tradition’ as it really does feel forever and that’s how I intend to keep it. I will say I don’t need a small puce screaming bag of vomit to cement that bond. My shiny diamond ring and 3 cats will more than suffice!!!
My parents have a strong (and long) marriage so I have a good experience of the married world, but the wife comes from a divorced family. I don’t know if that has had an effect on his sense of commitment and made him want to get married to have the solid loving relationship his parents never had or give him the impression that marriage is something you can walk away from when you’re sick of putting the effort in to make your partner happy, I don’t know… but if he hadn’t proposed, I’d really like to believe we’d still be together which is nicely reassuring.
This said, many folk are together long term without needing to get married (like Ma & Pa Larkin from darling buds of may!!), if that works for you and you have your own forms of commitment then hats off to you. It’s a modern day concept of ‘marriage’ isn’t it, the words and attitudes change but at the end of the day, it’s still long term commitment… which is what marriage is.
Most people do believe in having a soul mate, one person that is so perfect for them that no one else could compare, and while at least one person out there still believes in marriage, I don’t think its something that will die out.
Trampy
    xx
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