Archive for 2010

Herp Derp, people are interested in my fail!

What is this? 200 followers?


This calls for another giveaway amirite?

Thanks so much to everyone :P Especially regular commenters. I'm going to call out (just from memory, btw, I may have missed some awesome people out):

Susie (Susie's Home and Hobbies)
Scandalously Polished (she's pretty well known in the polish world so when I saw a comment from her I was like *squee*)
Rhea (The Chain Nail)
Rebekah (For the Love of Nails)

There are more, I've just got a crap memory. Thank you so much, all of you :)

Some more EOTDS

 Before I start, is it me or has Blogger suddenly got a lot faster at uploading photos? Meh. I'm not complaining.
So I used a Forever Friends Eyeshadow Palette from last year's collection (the dark, navy blue. I'll have to photograph it some time for you guys) and near the tear duct and at the end is MUA Shade 9. It's an awesome, very strong blue/purple duochrome. Not bad for a pound!
There's a little highlight that doesn't extend all the way up to the brow bone from one of my Active Cosmetics palettes (review coming soon). Eyeliner is one of those generic ones we Nigerians are so adept at finding in London markets and the mascara is quite crap so I shan't bother with the name, lol. Ignore the brows. I filled them in with the matte black in the Sleek Acid palette because my natural ones are like a forest after a nuclear winter.

Another eye of the day for your time:
 If you didn't ignore the brows the first time, you must this time. They're so nasty, lol. I forgot to fill them in :P
This is MUA Shade 13 on the bottom and above it (in a pathetic attempt at a cut crease) is the lovely purple from the Sleek Circus Palette (limited edition). I'm not entirely sure where all the glitter came from. That's the problem with sparkles. Wear them once when you're like five and they're still popping up in the most random places when you're 16...

A Quick Reminder

There are only a few hours left to enter my 100 follower giveway!
Link is here.
Please enter using the form and not by leaving a comment! Thank you.

Also, it's New Year's Eve today O_o Time flies. I hope everyone has a good new years!

Kpop Inspired Manis: Brown Eyed Girls "L.O.V.E"

 I'm sure most of you are thinking , "Who on earth are the Brown Eyed Girls" right now, lol. Basically, they're a K-pop girl group that can actually sing very well, with a kickass rapper (Miryo). They're seriously quirky and talented, and are known for being older than the average kpop idols (They have an average age of like thirty or something).
Anyway, this is a manicure that was loosely inspired by the video.
 I chose a sort of metallic purpley/grey thing (Speed Dry, 17 from Boots) because that's the sort of colour the film gave me (even though it's in black and white. It was the first colour that jumped to my mind when I thought about this movie. It seems to suit the Brown Eyed Girls, in my opinion). The thumb sort of looks like the logo, and the silver reminds me of the member Narsha - showy, but not trashy. <3
 The design on the middle finger didn't show up that well, sorry :P These are all from the Bundle Monster plates, by the way.

Christmas Manicure Part II

Lets pretend it's still Christmas! Even though it's been three days since the actual event....*shifty eyes*
 Anyway, I wanted to do a slightly non traditional manicure so basically plastered a lot of currency symbols on my nails. *cough*

This year, one of my friends said, completely seriously, that it was "only Christmas when the Coca-Cola santa came on TV". I promptly slapped that idea out of his head. Still, I put it on my thumb anyway. Here's for you, Miguel.

Have an awfully corporate christmas!

Christmas Manicure Part I

The nice, traditional version.

 I used the Avon Blue and Pearl polishes, and stamped over with ASOS Alexa and the white I got in the manicure set from Poundland. I was surprised at how opaque it stamped! A total beast, that polish is.
 I don't actually like this light blue. Have no idea why I decided to wear it. :/
Herp derp, there's totally another manicure which I will post like now. Or maybe later if my mum makes good on her threat to force us to go to bed.

Year End Round Up - Products I've Got High Hopes For

 I bought these products close to the end of the year (November). You may have noticed I didn't do a November New Things/Empties/Products I'm Enjoying-post. That was because I was planning to do this huge year end long series. So these are some products that I purchased in November that I'm hoping to obtain good results from for the New Year!
 Moon Care Lip Balm

This is a repurchase. I love it, it really seals the moisture in without really feeling like there's anything on your lips. I hate feeling like there is product on my lips, which is why I'm not a huge lip gloss fan - in fact, it's taken me ages to even start wearing a balm - but yeah, this really moisturises well. I like it. Let's hope it continues performing well in 2011!

 Rescue Oil.

The cheap Bio Oil rip off from the pound shop, I'm really hoping that this will make the scar on my knee less visible. Hopefully in time for summer. I want to wear shorts! *pouts*
I'm wondering if there's a specific way to apply this product? I've heard talk of people buffing it in with like a body brush. Have any of you guys used this?

Oh, and Merry Christmas, ya'll. I would have made a seperate post, but I guess everyone's been doing that lately :P

Nails Inc Queensgate Mews

 This colour looked kind of promising in the bottle, but once on the nails it's basically black. Oh well.
 Nice shine, goes on smoothly, lasted seriously well without a topcoat. A*, Nails Inc.
Me likes.

Year End Round Up - Nail Polishes that I've Enjoyed Using

In this post, three polishes basically represent their entire line as from those I've tried, the quality has been quite consistent. Here we go...

MUA Polishes

For a pound, these are seriously decent! I've finished the clear one (used it as a topcoat) and not only was there not very much chipping, but it stayed nice and runny until the end. I find so many topcoats go all thick and nasty near the bottom, making them impossible to apply. If Superdrug can do this for a pound, Sally Hansen, why can't you?
Nice range of colours and good drying time. Thumbs up for MUA.

Sally Hansen Strengthening Base Coat

Thankfully, this is nothing like that disastarous topcoat. It seems to help prevent chipping and I love the green glass bottle it comes in. Makes me feel like I'm a pharmacist or something.

Miss Sporty Clubbing Colours "Metal Shine"

Unlike the yellow from this line, this is great! I've had it for about seven months and it remains nice and thin, doesn't chip easily at all and dries really nice and hard so you don't have to worry about dents if you hit your nails against something. I really like this!

ASOS Paints

Crazily opaque, really cute bottle designs and they dry quickly. What more do you really need from a polish? The cost is a bit prohibitive but if you get them on sale like I did, that's not an issue.

Barry M Nail Paint in "Raspberry"

Still one of my favourite reds, this is opaque in one coat and goes darker with the second. You get a good amount in each bottle and it has an awesome brush. It's just a lovely classic shade that everyone should consider owning, in my opinion.

EDIT: Forgot the Nails Inc! The one pictured is "Lowndes Square" but I've found the whole line to go on well, with no application problems, they have great staying power and come off easily with nail polish remover.
As they bloody well should for £10. Just sayin'.

Honoury mention - Tesco's Nail Polish Remover. While not a polish (quite obviously, lol) it really makes light work of removing nail polish and a little goes a long way. Plus it's dead cheap. I'm actually quite impressed by it!

The "Year End" series is almost over! Just a couple more posts to round it out.

Cleaning out the Vault Part II

 This is part two because linked to this is part one.
Anyway. This first picture is a load of belated birthday/christmas presents from my friends (I had my party two weeks after my actual birthday, lol...) and apparantly they ordered the rest off the interwebs so they'll be coming soon. O_o

 I just thought this was really cool! If any of you remember my blue/orange leopard print manicure, when I went to take it off this happened with the amused me enough to take a picture of it.
 This product is a nice little bunch of nasty.
 I accidentally left this out of the "Products I've Disliked Using" callout. It's a very oily lipbalm. Too much and it makes you look as if your lips have been lacquered...I put this on without a mirror in an orchestra rehearsal and my music teacher full on stared at my lips for like a minute. Most uncomfortable rehearsal ever. *shudders*
This dries my lips out more than it moisturises and took forever to finish. But I've finished it now, so yey!
 But the rollerball thing is all kinds of cool. Perhaps another brand can put this innovation to good use? This was from Blistex, by the way.
 So futuristic. Pity the product doesn't actually deliver.
 Finished. 'Twas satisfactory. I still prefer spray deodorants, though.
 They see me Fauxnadin', they hatin'.
 This design is from the Bundle Monster Plates. This is ASOS Megan as the base colour, with Boots "Berrylicious" as the design colour.
 Same design, different colours. Miss Sporty Clubbing Colours in I don't know what, the silver one that I've reviewed here once before (Chrome? Liquid Metal? Plain old Silver? Did this even come with a name?) and the design is in ASOS Alexa.

And the rest was me pic whoring.

OK, vault cleared satisfactorily.

Year End Round Up - Nail Polishes that I Disliked Using

There are only two offenders on this list for this year. But by God have they offended me.

Barry M Nail Paint in "Mint Green"

During the past two summers, Mint Green as a colour (not the polish) has been insanely popular, with every cosmetics company and it's dog rushing to produce a shade that would be as influential as Chanel's...whatever it was called. The overpriced green one with the sparkles they did. Anyway, one would have expected that Barry M's would be better than most, seeing as it was a brand well known for it's decent nail polish quality and it cost slightly more than the other offerings one could find in say, Superdrugs or Boots.
Pah. This streaky, nasty geseki* is just awful to work with. It needs a minimum of three coats to look anywhere near passable and each coat takes an insane amount of time to dry. It bubbles like a dodgy looking volcanic lake filled with noxious gases and once you've gone through the nightmare of that application, you go to bed and in the morning you find that the nail polish is all over your blanket because apparantly sixteen hours isn't a long enough drying time. I want my £3 back.

Consider if: You like the bottle shape? That's it, really. Even MUA have a mint green out now. I haven't tried that one, but if it's rubbish at least you've only wasted £1 and not £3.

Miss Sporty Clubbing Colours in "Yellow"

This polish is so much do not want. Right after I took this photo, I tossed it into the bin from the other side of the room, like a boss. I'm pretty sure there are a couple of laws of physics that this nail polish breaks? Perhaps I should take it to my science teacher and ask him. Ha, that'd go well.
"Lena. You're asking me about...what is this?"
"It's nail polish, sir."
"So what do you do with it?"
"You put it on your nails, sir. It makes them different colours..."
"Ah, so that's why your nails are always a weird colour compared to everyone else's."
Or maybe I should mail it to the New Scientist. The bottle claims that it dries in a minute. In exactly what nation does one minute = never? Seriously, do tell, I want to visit that country. For real. You paint this polish on (and here's the law defying bit) and as you're applying it, it's drying. The moment the brush (did I mention that the brush is horrible? Well the brush is horrible) leaves the bottle it's a race against time to keep it from drying completely in the 0.3 seconds it takes to apply it onto your fingers. Naturally this leaves the polish wonderfully streaky, uneven and disgusting on your nails. Now, you think to yourself, if it dries straight from the bottle, I shouldn't have to wait long for it to dry on my hands!
Lies. Dirty rotten lies. You can sit completely still for like twenty minutes and not have this polish dry. For some reason, once on the nail it draws on moisture from like the air or something to remain wet. Urgh.
And it sucks at stamping too. And marbling. Just to add insult to injury. Oh, and if you get a ball of this polish anywhere near the bottom of the plastic cup that you are using to marble, it will eat through the bottom in record time and then spill warm water all over your bathroom floor, which is something I'm sure you all want.

Consider if: you have a burning urge to burn your money, piss on the ashes and then douse them in petrol and then dump them into the sea.

EDIT: I forgot to put the meaning of "geseki" which you may have noticed I'd starred and italicised. It's Korean for "son of a bitch". Sums up that polish pretty well in my opinion.

An EOTD (Clearing out the Photos folder)

 Apologies for my poor photot taking technique/makeup application skills. I've had this rotting in my photo folder since forever (read. two weeks ago) and thought that I'd might as well post it.
 Oh, and please ignore my eyebrows...
This is the Sleek "Acid" Palette and the darkest shimmery blue from that as well as the matte(ish) khaki green. I tend to wear green when I don't want my makeup to be that noticeable for school and then overload on mascara and eyeliner, lol.
So the teachers can barely see the final result :P

Nails Inc Lowndes Square

 This was the first of Nails Inc's Autumn/Winter collection that I got for my birthday!
 When I first saw this colour, I thought it would be too similar to Jermyn Street (a cool brown/taupe) but it's actually quite different. It's like a dusky lavender with some brown in it. Quite interesting, actually!
 Wear was very decent, but I'm wondering if that was more to do with me cutting my nails right down than the actual polish. Application was nice and smooth, but you had to let the first coat dry thoroughly before adding the second or some bubbles would form. Thankfully, drying time was good.
 Nails Inc were so nice as to write "flammable" and then add a little picture of a fire so that we all got the message, lol. I thought most people were aware that Nail Polish is:
-not particularly great for the environment
Or perhaps not, then.

 Rawr. My claw is out to...claw you! No, just kidding, I love my readers <3
All in all, I really like this polish. Nails Inc usually get it right and this colour is interesting enough to keep me guessing. It's like a mix of the brown/taupe/grey/purple colours that have been in vogue for some time and ambiguous enough for me not to be able to call it any one of the above. Also, it basically melts off the nail with a little bit of polish remover, which I approve of as I hate having to scrub at my nails to clear them of polish.

Coming Up...

- A review on a pretty cheap, UK brand that I'd owned well before I started this blog.

- The reviews on the Nails Inc Autumn/Winter Collection

- The Nail Polish Best/Worst Year End Round Ups

- Products I have high hopes for in 2011!

So please stick around for those :P

Year-End Round Up - Products I've Disliked Using

Sadly, not everything that I bought this year was up to standard...

Urban Decay Loose Pigments in Asphyxia and Graffiti

I'm not as butthurt over these as I would be if I'd bought them at full price, but the applicator that the packaging forces you to use is just so irritating I don't feel like using these that often - which is a shame as the actual eyeshadows are gorgeous and buttery soft! I think Urban Decay is discontinuing these anyway now.

Consider if: You'd use these more to highlight the inner corners than all over the lid.

Chit Chat (Poundland) Concealer Stick in "Dark"

Dark my ass. Please. It's barely a shade darker than their medium and light concealers. It doesn't cover up spots or scars at all, creases like a mofo and is just all around disgusting. It looks beige/brown in the tube but turns an atrocious shade of yellow on the skin.

Consider if: Don't. Unless you want a very, very cheap concealer to do a mediocre job on your under eye circles. It creases as well.

Elizabeth Arden Lengthening Mascara

I don't know the exact name of this mascara as the packaging has worn off...not something that I expect from a high end mascara. It's the formula of the mascara that I hate. It's insanely wet and gets everywhere, including your freshly applied eyeshadow which you then have to reapply or take a cotton bud too. It sucks for the lower lashes as well, and the wand isn't really to my taste but that's quite a personal thing. After a month or so, the formula manages the impossible and stays wet but clumpy? So you have mascara that's wet and gets everywhere and the amount that has managed to stay on your lashes is clumpy. Gross.

Consider if: you're buying it as a present for someone that you don't like very much.

Elizabeth Arden Eye-Fix Primer

I find this product only holds shadow for about eight hours or so, which, while not horrible, isn't anywhere near say Urban Decay Primer Potion's performance and they're around the same price...also, eyeshadow begins fading around the four hour mark.

Consider if: you don't have access to anything better.

Year-End Round Up - Products I've Enjoyed Using

This post had a picture before I decided it was unnecessary.

Anyway, shall we start? In no particular order...

Boots Natural Collection Body Spray - Vanilla

This was two pounds for 250ml of product, if I recall correctly. I originally bought it for the spray bottle (I was planning to empty the perfume out and refill it with one of my concoctions, lol) but liked the smell and am still using it as a perfume. While it doesn't stay on for a long time, it's pretty cheap so you don't have to be conservative over how often you spray it. It does the job that I want it to, so I've put it in this post.

Sleek iDivine MakeUp Palettes - Acid & Circus

While we all know about their fail customer service, their product quality is generally very good. The matte black included with the Acid palette is to date the only eyeshadow I have hit pan on (and have nearly finished using) without it shattering into a thousand tiny pieces. It's not the most pigmented of Sleek blacks (I've found that the black in the Circus palette is insanely pigmented) but that fact is almost a plus as it gives a softer look to my eyebrows. Sleek have some of the best drugstore shimmer eyeshadows that I've ever bought. I find their mattes are lacking (except the black ones) though.

Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Moisturizing Lip Balm

This is dead cheap (I know for a fact it is way less than £2 at Superdrugs) and really does keep my lips soft and makes them look slightly matte as opposed to very greasy/glossy as many cheap lip balms can do. I wear this either by itself, or a thin layer underneath a lip pencil/lipstick. I've recently started wearing those, lol. Another plus for this product is that it contains sunscreen. No idea what rating, but I'm happy to have it in there. My only complaint would be that it can sting a little if the lips are badly chapped. Still, I bought a second to use on parts of my body with dry skin as it contains a lot of Vitamin E, and it works really well in my opinion. I can't see this one running out any time soon, but when it does I will repurchase (already have, see above :P)

Urban Decay The Black Palette

I credit the beauty blogosphere for a) allowing me to even know of this product's existence and b) enabling me to know exactly where I stood when I purchased it. Thanks to some extremely detailed and honest reviews (including one from the Pink Sith over how to dupe it using Fyrinnae which I found really interesting and did consider attempting) I was pretty aware that I'd need the Pixie Epoxy to make it pop, which I've now ordered and am waiting for, and any other shortcomings (not a lot with this product). I love all the shades in this and am pleased to own the Zero liner and the Eden primer. It's my special occasion palette!

The MUA Make Up Line at Superdrugs

This will most likely turn up again when I do the nail polish specific year end round up, but I really love the feel of the shadows, lip glosses and the pigments from this line - it's all good quality for a pound and you get quite a lot of product for the price. The eyeshadow pans break if you so much as look at them the wrong way, but repressing them is quite a simple job (though annoying) and I enjoy pressing things so I'm not that bothered over a one pound product. I'm really excited to try out their clear mascara for my eyebrows. This was my favourite makeup launch of the year.

Bella Sugar Four Colour Eyeshadow Palette

I won a giveaway on Bella Sugar's blog a while ago, and I was really pleased to recieve the palette, being my first giveaway prize! The design on the outside is simple but so cute, and I've taken it out many a time in my bag and nothing has been broken. It's incredibly pigmented and they just look so vibrant on the lid. I remember being in science and wearing Ariel (a dark, forest/mossy green) and my science teacher saying, "Your eyeshadow is highly illegal*, but gorgeous."
Anyway I was pretty pleased by that. Hopefully in the New Year I'll be able to order. Assuming I get Christmas money. *hint hint, relatives*

* against our school rules, not necessarily against the law of the land, lol.

Have you tried any of the products from these brands? Jan, if you're reading, how did you find the MUA polishes?

Bundle Monster Plates

I don't even know what to think.

Can you see that cut on the second joint of the finger? (Sorry, it was really weird to photograph) That's from just holding it in my hand. Seriously. I'd known the edges of the plates were sharp, from word around the blogosphere (love that word) but I'd thought I was being oh so clever by being all stealthy and everything, holding it in the palm of my hand when I wanted to use/look at one. Naturally, I realised that I hadn't been that clever that when I went to chop tomatoes later that night. It was stinging like nobody's business and I was like "What is this?" On closer examination, I had a multitude of tiny cuts all over my hand! Good times.
To reduce the damage-doing potential to these plates, I took some of my cheap nail files to the sides of the plates. All twenty one of them. The casualties of this were two nail files and like an hour of my time. Plus the metal dust got everywhere. Gross. Still, it turned them from nunchucks to mildly harmless nail stamping instruments so I guess it's all good. In case you were wondering why I had pictures of nail files up on here, it's to show you the damage that about five plates will do to them. So if you were thinking of using your nice, brand new crystal file, please don't. Please.

I think this came to £21 in total, including postage (not entirely sure how much the exact amount was as this was a birthday present). Now, ordinary - legit - Konad stamping plates cost about £5 or £6 on eBay and the like, and this was the price paid for twenty one plates which is basically £1 a plate. In my opinion, that's a very good deal. Especially as the designs aren't just variations of flowers - not that I have anything against flowers, but some retailers need to switch it up a bit. Some of my favourites from this set include the pair of kissy lips, the big L.O.V.E stencil (which I'm going to do a K-pop inspired design with at some point, hopefully) the woodgrain pattern (which I've seen Ange from Scandalously Polished use to create what is probably one of my favourite nail designs of all time - oh, and it's not particularly safe for work, you have been warned) and the halloween/goth plates. There are more, those are just a few. I can see myself getting quite a bit of use out of these.

Well I would, if I could use them.

Perhaps this is just my set? Can you see the lack of definition in these two plates, BM04 and BM19? (these are the worst, individual designs are affected on some other plates) I haven't tried stamping with most of these yet but I can't see them picking up much colour at all. If it is just my set, the manufacturers have a quality control issue. It's a shame, because these plates have some really interesting designs on them, but they're pretty much unusuable.

I think it's clearest in these two photos.
My final gripe with these is that once you have used them, there is always some leftover polish remaining. This is not a problem I've had with any of my other (Konad or fauxnad) plates. I use a decent polish remover that has a high acetone content and it doesn't come off on these plates unless I take a cotton bud to it and really scrub away at the design. I suppose this shouldn't be an issue - my plates aren't decorations - but it does make me worry that after I've used say, a hot pink, the next time I use the design with a navy blue, that the pink may transfer onto my blue design and ruin it.

And the filing (which should be done at the manufacturers, really) does leave slight scratches on the end of the plates, which may bother some people who dislike scratches on their plates. To prevent damage to the undersides and faces of the plates after filing (pieces of dust and grit were all over the plates and weren't brushed away effectively) I "washed" mine with damp cotton wool and water, and then dried them carefully because I don't know whether these will rust if exposed to water. All but two of my plates still had the protective plastic sheet on, however. Just something to bear in mind if you're planning on doing the same thing - file and wash/dry before peeling off the coating. You might want to wear gloves as well.

Overall? If Bundle Monster were to release a new set of twenty one plates with brand new designs at the same price, I would probably purchase, but only armed with this knowlege. I'd also need to know just how many of the plates are duds like the two I showed you above - it's not so cheap when you can't use the product!

Have any of you guys bought these? How were your experiences?

Has anyone else had the same experience?

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