Monday, 29 December 2014

2015 Bucket List

In the same vein as last year, I'm going to make a list of things I want to do before 2015 comes to a close. This usually helps me to maintain some kind of direction, as I can be a bit of a wanderer.

1. Get a Job. Any job at this point.
2. Save for a course in something I can do involving beauty.
3. Get back to training for races.
4. Possibly move out... Maybe Dundalk, maybe Dublin...
5. More random acts of kindness.
6. Speak more about Mental Health, I have a voice, I'm going to use it!
7. Get my anchor tattoo.
8. Volunteer, and do charity work.
9. Run a sub 30 5km.
10. Be a better friend, girlfriend and person.

My mentality is that if I write these down and post them in a public place, then I have to go through with them. That way I wont back out. It worked for a lot of last years post! :D

I also want to wish all of my readers a fabulous new year!! I am grateful for each of you in turn! So... What are your 2015 plans??

Let me know!

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Smiles of 2014 (pic heavy)

I know I did a 2014 Retrospective, but I firmly believe there are no such things as being too grateful or two positive. Especially when you're normally a depressive, anxious soul who hates everyone!

Anyways, I digress. My next instalment in the "Look back at 2014" is to take a few of the things that made me smile, and show my gratitude for the moments, the people, the places.

I'm grateful for the smiles shared, the laughs had, and the companies that have reached out to me, I'm grateful for the amazing dinners out, dinners in, pig outs, tea dates, coffee dates, old friendships rekindled and the new friends I've made. Old chapters have closed, new ones opened, lessons have been learned and improvements made.

The amazing scarf my mother spent over a month knitting me.
My lunatic best friend and her brilliant selfies!! 

Sunday, 21 December 2014

IrishBBlogger Secret Santa 2014 Reveal!!

I got my Secret Santa present on the 3rd of December and positively dived right in! My lovely lady, who I can now reveal as... Coveted Mess's own Aisling, was SO good to me and I'm absolutely delighted with everything! She gifted me some wonderful little goodies, all mini-sized -which I adore, because they make me feel bigger than I am- and smelled amazing. 

Here's the run-down! 

In a beautiful shiny purple bubble-envelope, I found a gorgeous stocking and a cute little card! The first thing I noticed was the whole package smelled divine!! In the stocking, the first thing I felt was fuzzy, and it was fuzzy socks, two pairs, in fact, with which I was delighted. I adore fluffy socks. Next up were some Soap and Glory goodies, a mini sized Righteous Butter and a mini sized Clean On Me shower-gel. They smell divine and I'm saving them for Christmas Eve! 

Then I dived into the stocking again and I pulled out a Yankee Candle wax tart in the scent Cranberry Pear. It's so Christmassy I can't even tell you! Then I dug some more, and found a bottle of Caudalie Divine Oil, which I've used and it's absolutely true to its name, divine!! Almost at the end, there was a Bourjois Rouge Edition Matte lip cream, a brand, shade and finish I have never experienced before, and now I adore. Finally, there was a Chocolate Mint Lipbalm and 2 fabulous Freddo bars for a chocolate injection! 

Thank you so much Aisling, I'm really really delighted with my stocking! I can't forget to say a huge thank you to Aisling over at Total Make-Up Addict for organizing the whole shebang! I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience, sign me up for next year!!! I can't wait to see what everyone else got!

Merry Christmas, 

Saturday, 20 December 2014

First Impressions of Naked On The Run

I can avoid most temptations, but the Urban Decay counter is not one of them. I'm weak, I'm so weak!! 

The Naked On The Run is the latest in the Naked range, boasting a large palette with everything you need to get ready on the go, besides foundation and powder. What more could you want? 

How beautiful is that casing???
This palette contains - 
5 all new eye shadows, 1 blush, 1 light bronzer, and one highlight shade, as well as liner, mascara and lipgloss. Oh, and a ginormous mirror!!

Shadow Swatches. 
The shadows, as pictured above, starting from the bottom, are:
Dive- a light gold/champagne shimmer with a rosy undertone
Fix- a very light brown toned matte
Resist- a mid toned neutral brown shimmer with gold micro shimmer
Dare- A deep brown matte 
Stun- a bronze brown with bronze micro shimmers

As always, each shadow is buttery soft, blendable, pigmented and long lasting. If I was to be reincarnated as a palette, I wouldn't care once I was Urban Decay! The beautiful neutral tones in the On The Run palette make it perfect for any season, because shimmery neutrals never go out of style! 

Inside the palette...
There is also a large pan house light bronzer and blush, as well as another pan with a cream highlight shade. Just like the shadows, each of these offerings are buttery soft. The bronzer is matte, however the blush has a satin sheen, which when applied to the skin, gives the face a beautiful healthy glow. The highlight shade really draws the light and yet never looks overpowering. Win!!

I haven't added a photo of the mascara wand or applied to my lashes, because really, the wand is the standard bristly kind, not like the plastic spiky ones that are in nowadays. It also doesn't offer much by way of volume, but rather darkening and lengthening the lashes, for a very natural finish. I do really like it though, because it's lengthening and not volumising, it doesn't clump!! Woohoo!
Stag Eyeliner  (Stag) and Naked Lipgloss (Sesso) swatches

I've never owned an eyeliner like Stag, ever. It's a deep black-brown shade, which I find really makes the blue in my eyes stand out, and is less harsh than black. I think I'll have to pick up more liners from the 24/7 Glide On range. They're wonderful. 

Finally, to finish your look, you'll be needing a lip colour. This is where the Naked lipgloss in Sesso comes in. a neutral pink with nude undertones and a moisturising glossy finish. I've never been a fan of nude eyes with a nude lip, but this has me well on the way to conversion. 

I would have no issue travelling for a week away with this palette, and just bring some extra lip colours, to change up each look. It's got everything you need to pack a very light makeup kit. If, like me, you tote a duffle around in preference to a suitcase, this is the palette for you!! 

Keep an eye out in the next while for a look using this palette! 

Friday, 19 December 2014

Lip Service - Driving Me Mad (#1)

I'm only a learner driver, and even saying that makes me feel like I should not even be writing this post. However I need a good rant and maybe this will educate a few. All of these rants are car related and pertain to driving. This post has a lot of language. I'm sorry in advance...

1. If You Can't Pay Attention Solely To The Road, You Don't Deserve Your License. 

This one really fucking bothers me, because it's SO bloody dangerous. I would sooner walk to my local village, 40 minutes away on the hoof, than get into the car with someone who looks into every driveway of every house on the road, commenting on everything they see. If you want to look around you, I'll drive and you can be the passenger. The same goes for looking at everything in the car but out the windscreen. If you can't let someone alter the air conditioning without double checking, I'm not getting in the car with you.

2. Know Your Fucking Lane Approaching A Roundabout. 

How some people passed their test is beyond me! The rules of the road has a whole chapter dedicated to this, for fuck sake!!! The left lane is for the immediate left turn. The right lane is for second and subsequent exits. You would have had to know this in order to pass your test. The two lanes are there for a reason, believe it or not!!! You don't get into the left lane and then go around the whole roundabout to take the last exist. Also, while we're on the subject, USE YOUR INDICATORS PROPERLY!!!!! If you're in the right lane, going all the way around to the last exit or to the very right, you put on your right indicator, get into your correct lane, and then when you filter into the lane to complete the action, indicate left for your exit and exit the roundabout. It's actually not hard at all.

3. The White Line IS There For A Reason, Idiot!!

If you drive along any road, glued to the white line, you are on your own, buddy. I'm not getting into the car with you. You should be in the centre of the lane, that way if someone needs to swerve out or slightly overtake something as they come towards you in the opposing lane, they're not going to wipe you out. And if perchance there is no white line, on a country road, you imagine a white line and stay to the left of it. Simples!!!

Sorry for my language. 
These things really grind my gears!! (get it?!)

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Recommended To Red- No.7 Instant Radiance Highlighter

I'm so easily enabled it's actually the worst issue in my life. I don't know if you've seen the trend in my RTR series, but my gorgeous friend Kayliegh of Kayliegh Land has a serious stake in the recommended products I pick up. This time around it's the No.7 Instant Radiance Highlighter. The last time we went shopping it was mentioned more than once, make no mistake!

I love this little crayon highlighter. It's creamy, opalescent and so easy to use. I draw this over and back on my cheekbones, once down my nose, lightly under my brows and dab it on my cupids bow. I usually blend with my fingers, using the heat of my hands to perfectly blend it in with my foundation. The longevity of this product is unparalleled - even after a month of owning this, it has never been twisted up past the original rounded tip, which means it is great value for money!!

This highlighter gives a beautiful finish, and unlike powder highlighters, is mess free. Its ease of use, the compact packaging and the peachy tone make it a real winner. You need this in your life.

This highlighter is 12.95 in Boots, but with the coupons floating around at the moment, you will get this beauty for 8.95.

Have you tried this highlighter?
Have you any recommendations for me?? 

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Beauty Blogger Tag!

I spotted this post on Beth Young's Blog after a spot of binge-reading, last week and I couldn't help myself, I looooove tag posts!!! So, grab a cuppa, and then lets get into it! 

Is your hair naturally curly or straight?
The phrase "80's hair metal" springs to mind. I've a ginger 'fro when it dries naturally. 

What is your natural hair colour?
Ginger, woo!!!

Do you dye it yourself or go to a salon?
I bleach the underside of my hair for an ombre effect. 

How often do you wash your hair?
Thrice weekly!

Do you wear the same style everyday or change it?
I usually sling my hair up in a ponytail day to day but most of the time I curl my hair if I'm going out to see people. 

Do you do your own mani/pedi or go to the salon?
I get gels in a salon or with Lynn, and I do my own polish at home!!

How often do you change your nail polish?
Well at the moment I have gel nails, but I change polish when it chips!

Do you polish your toes in winter too or just summer?
I polish my toes every fortnight!

How long does it take you to put on your make up?
I don't wear make-up day to day but when I put it on, it takes an hour!

What do you do first? Face or Eyes?

Do you “collect” make up or just buy make up as you need it?
I collect it. It's a problem

How often do you wear fake eyelashes?
Almost every time I wear a full face. I love lashes.

Do you do a full face of make up everyday

Do you wear make up when your home alone?
Not unless I've to photograph it for a blog post!

Will you leave the house without make up?
Well, yes! I wouldn't go to Zumba or out running with a full face on.

How many high end products do you own?
I've a few bits from Urban Decay and MAC.

How often do you wash your brushes?
Foundation everyday, the rest every week or two.

How often do you change your handbag?
Rarely. My TARDIS bag is my every day bag.  

What time do you get up and go to sleep at?
I go to bed late, and wake up around 9am without fail.

How often and when do you work out?
3 times a week minimum. 

Left or right handed?
Right handed. 

How tall are you?
5 foot 6 ish

Do you speak a foregin language?
German, badly. I'm very rusty!

How many pets do you have?
3 cats and a dog. 

How often are you on blogger?
Daily. I like to plan posts ahead of time. 

Do you read comments posted on your blog?
Absolutely, and I reply too!

What sort of camera do you use for photographs?
I use my Samsung Bridge Cam and my Samsung Galaxy S4.

What is your favourite magazine?
U and Stellar. 

Do you swear?
Fuckin' right I do! Usually not in posts, though!

What is your favourite colour?
Orange, I even have it incorporated into my arrow tattoo (my only colour piece)

How often do you clean your room?
Whenever its messy, I'ma freak. Can't sleep in a messy room. 

How did you come up with your blog name?It seemed fitting, I have red hair and I love red lipstick. 

Now, for the tagging! I tag my 3 favorites, Kayliegh, Robyn and Aisling in this! Hop, girls, or I'll hop off ye! :P :P And anyone else who reads this, consider yourself tagged!!! 


Tuesday, 16 December 2014

PS Love This Make Up Brush Cleanser

Imagine my surprise when I found a bottle of brush cleanser amongst a stand of beauty sponges and false eyelashes in Penneys in The Marshes, Dundalk - 125ml for 2.50!!!

I wasn't leaving without it, that was for sure! So I bounded to the counter and then toted it home to Chris's house to get the testing underway!!! I armed myself with paper towel, cotton rounds, my dirty brushes and my camera and got to work.
For this post I chose three of my most bothersome brushes under normal circumstances - my RT powder brush, my BCC bent liner brush and my Urban Decay Naked 3 double ended shadow brush (the flat shader end). As you can see in the picture above, there is black shadow, pigmented face powder and liner visible on the respective brushes. I spritzed a few sprays of the cleanser onto a folded piece of paper towel and started with the UD Shader running it lightly back and forth on the product - best to get straight in to the tough stuff. Colour me impressed!! As for the liner brush and powder brush? Absolutely shining, they are!!! Check out the "After" picture, below!

Because this cleanser is alcohol based, it cleans and sanitises your brushes between deep cleans (read how I deep cleanse my brushes HERE), which I do weekly/fortnightly depending on how heavy my use has been. The cleanser dries almost as soon as you've stopped rubbing the bristles through the solution and leaves them soft and lightly scented. I could not ask for better!

For 2.50 in Penneys, this brush cleanser has far exceeded my expectations. I would not have been upset if it was poor quality, because it was so inexpensive, but it's wonderful. For spot cleaning my brushes, I will definitely be repurchasing!!!

Have you tried this brush cleanser?

Monday, 15 December 2014

Lip Service. Weight? Wait!!

Image: Pop Sugar
“A cultural fixation on female thinness is not an obsession about female beauty but an obsession about female obedience.” - Naomi Wolf 

I'm pretty thin. I've never made a secret of that. Nor have I made a secret of how I've treated my body over the years. However the quote above, makes a valid point. All across papers, magazines and the TV, there are images of skinny women labelled "ideal body" and curvy, voluptuous women labelled "obese and unhealthy".
At a UK size 6-8, standing at a very respectable 5'8", and weighing in at 8 ish stone (I haven't weighted myself in 6 months), I'm probably the ideal body type. But what has taken me a very long time to learn, not just from personal experience, but thanks to my boyfriend, good friends and a love of food that far outweighs my quest for a Victoria Secret Angel body, is that my weight does not define me.

Nor does your weight define you.

How you treat people, how you conduct yourself, who you are as a human... All of that defines you. That number doesn't. Being "a twiglet" and "in need of a ham sandwich" doesn't define who I am. I'm sure if you ask people in my life who I am, they would tell you I'm a friend, girlfriend, daughter, sister, niece, auntie, cousin, wench, volunteer, zumba-girl and hopefully a good person.

I haven't weighed myself in 6 months and I've never felt happier!

The scales wont tell you who you are, what your wonderful qualities are, the awfully cheesy jokes you tell at dinner and how you like your life organised.

You are beautiful.
You are special.

Throw out that scales.

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Sunday, 14 December 2014

Christmas Gift Guide - Sweet Scents*

One thing I notice about people almost immediately when I meet them, is how they smell. No matter what, your scent is a noticeable aspect of your appearance, as it were. You may not be able to see a persons scent, but it affects how you see them.

First up is Prada Candy. This scent is sweet and very girly. The longevity of this perfume is unparalleled, I've owned a bottle of this since 2012 and I've still a lot left. One spritz is plenty, it lasts all day and doesn't fade during the course of the day. The packaging is heavy and decadent, both the box and the bottle. A real crowd pleaser all-round for the girly-girl in your life!!

Prada Candy retails between 58-100Euro in Debenhams stores.

Next on the line up is Katy Perry Killer Queen, the original one, mind you! This scent will suit any rock-chick in your life, and wont break the bank, to boot! It's striking but seductive, and even the smallest bottle has an amazing life-span. The spray is not as generous as the spray of Prada Candy, but because of the difference in style, it's okay, it works.

This scent can be found in Boots and for a 50ml bottle, will only set you back 26Euro.

Finally, for a bargain for any lovely lady in your life, I have the So...? Sexy* perfume. This is perfect for a sister, friend, anyone really!! It's a mix of sweet and sexy, a nice happy medium of Prada Candy and Killer Queen. Musky, fruity and floral, this bargain buy is well able to play with the high-end big boys!! As well as that you can nab this beauty in a few different gift sets. Personally, this perfume has been on the front line, splitting its time between my dressing table and handbag. If I had a mini size, I would die happy!

For 5.20 in Boots, you can't go wrong!!

Happy Shopping, you ill-organized mess! 

So...? Sexy was sent for review. As always, all opinions are my own! 

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Brush Cleaning 101

Brush Cleaning. I bet you shuddered reading those words. I'm not a huge fan of the process either. I've so many brushes that by the time I'm finished, by back is broken, my hands are prunes with acrylic nails attached and my spirit is crushed.

When I clean my brushes, though, I follow a specific routine. For all of the large brushes I use a plate and a small damp facial sponge from Penneys.

Brush Cleaning 101

Foundation Brushes - 1tsp Olive Oil and 2tsps of Baby Shampoo. I swirl the tips of my brushes around in both the oil and the shampoo breaking down the foundation, then I swirl them around on the damp sponge to really work the product into the brush hairs. When I'm done, I set the brushes aside on a paper towel until I'm ready to rinse them. The foundation brush cleansing routine is less tedious than the others because I clean it every other day.

For blush, powder, contour etc I forgo the olive oil, and swirl the brushes around in either baby shampoo or a dove soap bar, working the product into the fibres on the damp sponge. I skip the oil for powder brushes as powder is not as stubborn as foundation is on the bristles. These brushes are set aside until I'm ready to rinse them, too!

To spot clean my eye-brushes, I take a tiny amount of micellar water on a cotton round and swirl the tips of my brushes in it. To deep cleanse them, I simply take them through my powder brush cleansing routine. I find Dove soap bars are better for eye brushes as the ferrules don't risk having any product coming into contact with it.

For gel liner brushes, I swirl them on a cotton round with a small amount of waterproof eye-makeup remover on it, and then deep cleanse with the same step as the eye and powder brushes.

For rinsing, warm water, not too hot but not too cold is perfect. Rinse until the water runs clear and then gentle squeeze out the excess water. If you want to dry your brushes in a nice shape, you can even go onto E Bay and buy a length of brush-guard, which is porous but allows your brushes to dry in a proper shape. You can find similar HERE. For large brushes especially, this is an important step. I've found large powder brushes have a tendency to spread and flay out if they're uncared for.

To dry my brushes, I lay a large towel out doubled over, and fold the edge over twice, to create a lifted edge, and lay my brushes with the end of the handle on the lifted edge with the ferrule and bristles pointing downwards, and leave them to dry away from too much heat and sunlight.

I even keep a small bottle of Baby Shampoo in Chris's house for cleaning my foundation brush away from home. I keep a rubber band in my travel kit, and use it to hang my foundation brush on a wire hanger, with the bristles pointing downwards to dry.

How do you clean your brushes??
Let me know! 

Friday, 12 December 2014

Seventeen Phwoarr-Paint Concealer

Budget beauty doesn't mean you have to sacrifice quality for the saving of a few quid here and there. Sometimes, a budget beauty offering, like this Seventeen Phwoarr-Paint Concealer, is so impressive, you feel like telling people about it would be ruining it's cult status. 

Marketed as a "Heavy Duty Under Eye Concealer", this little round compact houses a thick, creamy, blendable concealer and a mirror in the lid. I wouldn't dream of putting this anywhere near my eyes. It's so thick it creases and you spend half your time touching it up, blending with your ring finger to keep it in check. It's meant to set, but I haven't found it to do that.


But for spots? Phwoarr-Paint is your only man!! It covers not only redness, but the thick, creamy nature of it hides the texture of the spot too. I've never enjoyed a budget concealer like this, ever. It's earned Holy Grail status in my stash, and it has never been put in my foundation drawer since the day it was lovingly brought home from Boots. 

For 6.99 I think this concealer could take on the likes of MAC and Benefit and live to tell the tale. 
Phwoarr-Paint comes in Fair and Medium and is stocked in Boots nationwide. 

Have you tried any concealers from Seventeen?

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

2014 Retrospective

Last year I wrote this post, listing 12 things I wanted to do before 2014 had come to a close. Well 2014 is all but finished and I want to have a look at the things on my list that I did and did not do.

The view of St Annes Church, Cork. 
The list was as follows:
The Ploughing. Great banter.
  1. Get a piercing 
  2. Archery tattoo from Phil at Spilled Ink,
  3. Pass Semester 1,
  4. Pass semester 2,
  5. Get a job cooking professionally,
  6. Go on holiday with Chris,
  7. Get back to competition levels at Archery,
  8. Finish the Game of Thrones books,
  9. Go to a blogger/YouTuber meet-up,
  10. Celebrate my birthday in the Vintage Cocktail Club,
  11. Blog more seriously,
  12. Pass my driving test
I only completed 7 of 12 items on this list. The first thing I did was get my conch pierced. then I passed semester one and got another tattoo from Phil over at Spilled Ink. I celebrated my birthday in the VCC with my best friend Aine, went to a blogger meet up with the lovely Kayliegh, passed semester two and gave blogging a serious chunk of my life.

Myself and John Dudley
There are things on this list that I didn't do, but there are things that are not on this list that I did, which I would rather focus on.

  • I overcame my fear of needles and had blood taken. 
  • I went to the Irish Beauty Show, which was a serious step for my crowd-phobia. 
  • I finally got to meet my beloved Tash from Natashas Wonderland!
  • Visited Cork twice to see my oldest friend Anna. 
  • Took up Zumba, running and going to the gym.
  • Took part in two Colour Dashes, a charity 4k, and two 5km timed races, as well as a Zumbathon.
  • Attended the Ploughing Championships. 
  • Learned about my character as a person. 
  • Attended a seminar hosted by John Dudley.
  • Read up on mental health and learned about my struggles. 
  • Celebrated 3 years with my amazing boyfriend, Chris. 
In retrospect, I think I had a lovely year, even though I'm still unemployed, failed my driving test a 3rd time, and didn't make my archery comeback. 2015 will be better! I came through this year stronger, with amazing friendships and for that I'm truly grateful. Not everyone can say the same.

At the Color Dash Cork

At the Color Dash Pheonix Park
I would love to hear your stand out moments of 2014. 
Let me know in the comments!

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Christmas Party Face of The Night

We're like a family. A mad, certifiable family who dance!! 

If you follow me on Twitter, read my blog, or know me at all, you'll know that I adore Zumba. I can't sing the praises of Zumba enough... As our instructor tells us, ZUMBA, ZUMBA, ZUMBA!!! But enough about the Latin inspired Dance Workout, this post is about my Christmas Party Make-Up!

I first exfoliated with Loreal Men Expert Exfoliator (yes, I know!!), ran a little of my Nivea 2 in 1 Cleanser and Toner (review) over my face with a cotton pad to take away any residue and then moisturised with my Garnier Pure Skin moisturiser. Starting on my base, I applied my W7 Prime Magic Anti Redness (review) with my fingers, applying it all over my face. I then took my Covergirl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3 in 1 foundation, dotted it all over my face and blended it in using my BCC F20 foundation brush. I took my Seventeen Phwoaar Paint Concealer around my nose and on any blemishes, and I used Maybelline Fit Me Concealer under my eyes in a triangle shape to highlight slightly and blended them both in with my Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge.

To set my concealer in place, I took my BCC F15 Tapered Contour Brush and lightly dusted over Catrice Prime and Fine Translucent Loose Powder, just on the areas where there is concealer, I'll set the rest later as you'll see. To contour I used my Sleek Face Contour Kit in the lightest shade and contoured under my cheekbones, first using my BCC F30, and then buffed it out using my Real Techniques Contour Brush to get rid of any harsh lines.

Once I contoured under my cheekbones I went in with my RT Large Powder Brush and Set the rest of my make-up using Natural Collection Pressed Powder in Cool, making sure to blend my contour even more, to really give a natural yet sculpted look. For blush, I've opted for a rosy matte shade, using MUA Single Blush in Marshmallow and lightly swept that over my cheeks and towards my temples using my RT Blush Brush.

For brows, I've been going bold and using the 17 Brows That Kit and filling them in with my RT Brow Brush, then setting them in place with my W7 Brow Gel. Onto eye make-up- I primed my lids with my beloved Essence I Heart Stage, and whipped out my chosen palettes for the evening, W7's In The Buff Lightly Toasted, and In The Night. I followed a tutorial by The Makeup Chair on Aria Montgomery from Pretty Little Liars.

I took a Revlon Eyeliner in Aubergine, and ran it along my lashes, then using my BCC E23 brush, packed Laura E from ITN onto my lids from the inner corner to about 2/3 of the way over on the lid. Then taking Delilah from Lightly Toasted in the same brush, blended that onto the outer corner. Tp deepen the color. To blend the purple and brown shadows I used my BCC E32 brush. I went back to my ITN palette and used Bologna to smoke out the look. I added Dusty as an inner corner highlight and then added Catrice Liquid Liner to create a wing and Ardell Demi Wispies to complete the look.

To complete the whole look, I used my Essence Lip Liner in Femme Fatale, and Rimmel X Kate Moss in 01, with Revlon Moisture Stain in New York Scene over the top for some gloss.

So there you have it, my Zumba Christmas Party look, step by step!! 
Did you like it? 

Let me know in the comments! 

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Conch Piercing; 1 Year On

Last year, on the 17th of December, I believe, I went to Dublin for my Christmas shopping and came home with the shopping and a fresh piercing. 

I got my Conch pierced. I won't beat around the bush, the piercing hurt being done, I yelped a bit when the needle went through. It is the thickest part of your ear so I should have expected it. When I came home, I cleaned it and it was throbbing but it wasn't painful any-more. My ear was red and angry for a few days but nothing I wasn't expecting, after all, I had just paid a lovely lady to push a 1.6mm tri-bevel hollow needle through my ear. It was mad at me. I understand!  It was agony to sleep on for 3 months or more, so I learned to sleep on my left side, which I still do even though my piercing is fully healed and doesn't hurt at all as I type this. 

A few months on (April) and I was growing weary of the little stainless steel ball in the hollow of my ear so I took myself off to Wildcat and picked up a black acrylic ball with white stars on it. I just wanted to have a nice top ball and the piercer said it wouldn't impede healing so I was happy as a clam. It hurt to sleep on for a bit but it was nowhere near as uncomfortable as the tiny ball was.

In July, I got my Arrow barbell and I adored it. I maintain my status as an archer, no matter what, I will go down swinging!! What better for an archer with an arrow tattoo to have a tiny silver arrow in her ear?! It was fabulous, until I wanted to change it. It wouldn't unscrew. For a few weeks it didn't bother me, but I knew something was up so once again, I took myself back to Wildcat to have them see what was up. Basically, I wound up having to have the whole thing pulled from my ear in two different directions and it SUCKED ASS SO HARD!!! I sobbed like a child, but the piercer was so cool she didn't judge at all, in fact she was amazing!! Back to a stainless steel barbell I went, replacement bar in tow in case I wanted to put the arrow back in a few weeks later. I didn't. I'll stick to my tattoo thanks!

Last month, I went to Baz Black (based in Dundalk), who would technically be my Boyfriends local piercing place, if Chris was pierced. I got Baz to switch out the bar, replacing it with a blue adonized Captive Bead Ring at 12mm diameter and 1.6mm in gauge. Having him change to the hoop - no bother at all, not a flinch or a twinge within a 10ft radius. Sleeping on it sucked for a fortnight and to be honest I thought about taking myself back up to Dundalk and getting Baz to swap it back again but I persevered and now it's perfect. The site of the piercing needed time to adjust to the curve, and now its absolutely perfect and it looks so bad-ass! 

Healing was a bit of a pain at times... It's had a pretty angry keloid on the back of my ear, which I drew out with Disprin pastes, and now its absolutely perfect, and healed really well after all the issues with the keloid. I cleaned it twice daily for 3 months, once a day for 3 months, and then every other day for 3 months, as well as applying tea tree oil with a cotton wool bud twice a week for the entire duration. I try not to touch it but the ring especially is easy to fiddle with. I still occasionally apply tea tree oil to the piercing and spray the whole thing with anti-bacterial spray by Easy Piercing just to be kind to it.

So 12 months on, and what's the verdict?

I wouldn't get the other Conch pierced, and probably will never venture into cartilage land whatsoever, but I would not change this conch ring for the world. I love it just as much as my tattoos, sometimes more. I'm all about tattoos, piercings are a longer more intricate commitment in terms of healing. You really have to be on the ball when you heal a piercing, there is a lot of scope for infections and rejection. I think I've learned enough about tattoos to know I'm happier healing fresh ink than a piercing. 

As cheezy as this is, I wanna say a big thank you to anyone who gave me advice or helped in any way when I was healing this bad boy! Sorcha at Wildcat Ink in Stephens Green, my lovely piercer, Dani in Dublin Ink for telling me about Disprin Pastes, Baz at Baz Black Piercing Dundalk for swapping out the bar for the CBR and various pierced friends for being dead sound when I had questions! 

Hope this post was helpful, 

Friday, 5 December 2014

Real Techniques Duo Fibre Brushes

They're nice to look at, that's about it...
I've a long standing love affair with this brand, owning almost all of the range... But I'm going to say something really controversial. 

I intensely dislike the Real Techniques Duo Fibre set. Yes, I know, I'm gonna split the crowd here, but it's panto season, so I'll let you all get your choruses of "Oh no you didn't; Ohhhh yes she did!!" out now. 

I really regret this purchase. I've used them as much as I could abide over the past few weeks and I just cannot deal. I understand the premise, they're duo-fibres apply and blend all in one, for light coverage, but to me there's a difference between light coverage, and invisible. I have tried them with all manner of products and... nothing. No love, no like, no barely abiding this trio. 

The bristles are not dense enough, they're too long and floppy, they just do nothing for me. A good make-up brush really turns me on, but these? Nada. 

Even when I was actively trialling them, I was hesitant to reach for them. That says it all really. I never hold back grabbing my RT Blush Brush, or my RT Eye Brushes. 

I'm sorry, beauty lovers, save your dosh here... 

These brushes retail for 29.99 in Boots.

What do you make of these brushes?
We can have a spirited debate in the comments! 

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Dundalk Make-Up Kit

As you know, I spend a lot of time in Dundalk with my boyfriend, and when I go, I have to bring a butt load of make-up to get me through anything that might possibly happen over 3 or 4 days. I need to be ready for heading out with friends, possible date nights or dinners out and everything in between! 

I tend to bring items that can multi task, from neutral to night out and not take an age to apply. In order of my own application, these are...

The contents of my travel make-up kit

  • Moisturiser: Garnier Pure Skin Shine Control Lotion
  • Primer: W7 Prime Magic Anti-Redness 
  • Foundation: Rimmel Stay Matte in 010 Light Porcelain
  • Concealer: Seventeen Phwoarr Paint in Fair
  • Contour: Seventeen Define and Conquer Contour Kit
  • Powder: Catrice Prime and Fine Translucent Loose Powder
  • Blush: Sleek Rose Gold 
  • Highlight: Seventeen Define and Conquer 
  • Eye Base: Essence I Heart Stage
  • Shadow Palette: W7 Lightly Toasted
  • Liner: Rimmel Exxagerate Liquid Liner
  • Mascara: W7 Absolute Lashes
  • Brows: Maybelline Brow Drama- Medium Brown 
  • Setting Spray: Urban Decay All Nighter 
  • Lips: A pinky nude (MAC Creme Cup), a bold pink (Essence Dare to Wear) or a red (RimmelXKate 01)
The lipsticks are not photographed because they change depending on the person. If this were your starting point to pack up a kit to travel, I wouldn't expect you to bring the lipsticks I bring! 


The brushes I bring with me are much less extensive than my make-up. I bring the very basics, because if it comes down to it, I can live without contour, or 5 eyeshadow colours blended together. It's all the one to me. Once I feel like I look good, I'll be happy, whether or not that means I need 1001 brushes is totally arbitrary to the cause. What I always bring with me are:

  • Real Techniques Expert Face Brush (O)
  • Real Techniques Contour Brush (O)
  • Real Techniques Powder Bush (O)
  • Real Techniques Blush Brush (Pi)
  • Real Techniques Base Shadow and Deluxe Crease Brush (Pu)
  • Essence Pencil Brush (Bl)
  • Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge (O)
With these products and brushes, I can be up, done and ready to go in less than 30 minutes! Not bad for the girl who when she's at home with all her products and an ocean of choice can't be ready in under an hour some days! Nifty! 

What do you carry in your travel make-up bag? 
Let me know some of your choice items! 

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Seventeen Define and Conquer Palette

Contouring has become one of those things that every girl wants to be the master of! When you look at Kim Kardashian, all you see are those amazing cheekbones and her slim lovely nose.

She truly has conquering down to a fine art, and a lust worthy one at that! 

I picked this compact contour and highlight kit up in Boots and I'm very impressed. Seventeen has always been hit and miss for me, but this is a hit. 

The casing is a Nars-esque, very neat and tidy black compact with clear labelling and a big mirror in the lid (tastefully hidden behind the guide sheet in the photo). It clicks closed really nicely and it houses two large pans, one a matte, or very slightly sheen-y highlight, and a warm-toned contour. The contour powder is less pigmented and has more fallout than my Sleek compact, which makes it perfect for more subtle and natural looks, because you can really tap away the excess and blend it out to a lovely finish!

The powders themselves are so soft and silky, blending really well for a flawless look. The shades are spot-on for us paler girls, Now if you're alabaster or totally see-through I might be inclined to lean you away from this but for someone who has a freckle-ridden face, it's just fine! 

Inside the kit you will find a short 4-step contouring guide and a picture to help you along. This makes this kit absolutely perfect for anyone out there who may be a bit unsure of the steps involved in order to contour. 

Two very enthusiastic thumbs up from this blogger, thats for sure!!! And for €7.49, you cannot fault this in the slightest! I'm delighted with this purchase and by the looks of things will be re-purchasing in the future! 

Have you tried this palette? 
Let me know what you thought!