mua heaven & earth shadow palette - looks & review

I recently invested in MUA's Heaven & Earth shadow palette, here are a few quick, everyday colour combinations I came up with whilst testing out the product.

A very subtle golden bronze with vanilla highlight & slight bronze dusting on lower lashline.

A medium toned smokey brown with pearl white brow bone highlight & medium gold on lower lash line.

Pearly vanilla all over with slight light gold dusting on outer lid.

Brown toned smokey eye using dark brown, medium gold & glittery vanilla.


This palette is without a doubt my ultimate dream combination of colours. I'm not a fan of bright, colourful eye shadows on myself & like to keep my eyes toned down, so this is literally perfect! I picked it up at Superdrug, from their MUA range for just £4 (most of this range cost just £1!), at such a low price I wasn't expecting great things but I thought for such a small cost it would be silly not to try it out. The palette comes with a double ended sponge applicator which I wasn't a fan of to be honest, I found my own brush set benefited the application of the shadows much more. The packaging is quite simple & humble, not particularly noticeable but still quite nice & professional looking. I was looking into buying Urban Decay's Naked palette but after finding this I actually think I'll just give it a miss, they feature very similar shades (bar a few blue/pink shadows) & I'm so impressed with the quality of this product that I feel no need to replace it with a higher end brand.

As you can see I had a quick play with the shadows & actually only used around half the colours in the palette to create all the looks above. All the colours are great to work with. If you're creating a bold look the shadows are easy to build up as they're very well pigmented. Alternatively, if you're only applying a small amount of colour for a subtle look you'll find you only need a small amount of product on your brush/applicator, even with the lighter shades & they're still noticeable. There are such a wide range of possible looks you can create with this palette, not to mention the palest white (top left corner) makes an incredible highlight. If you're into nude colours & want to try something new I would definitely recommend snapping this up, at only £4 it would be a crime not to!

ombre - blonde to brown

Let me begin by saying that I am by no means a professional when it comes to hair colouring (yet!) my teaching method has been trial & error since my early teens due to an irrational fear of the hairdressers (there was a bad incident during which my hair was completely chopped off & dyed beige, haven't set foot in a salon in three years.) & an impulsive attitude when it comes to dying hair/changing the style. Secondly if anyone is wondering about the pregnancy/hair dye myth & thinking "she cant do that!" it's a-okay, I've checked with two midwives & a doctor (slight worrier alert) & all have told me it's okay to dye my hair as I'm in my final trimester & the dye contains no ammonia, just don't dye excessively & do it in well ventilated areas. This post is purely a rough guideline of what I found the easiest way to ombre hair if you're currently blonde & don't wish to go brown only to have the hassle of bleaching the ends blonde again. The general order of the process is cover ends/areas you want to keep blonde > apply brown dye to rest of hair > rinse & voilĂ , you are ombre! But here is the process in a little more detail for those who wish to know...

Above is the original colour of my hair before dying. As you can see the ends were stubborn & remained brassy/golden whereas the roots are slightly whiter, other than the pesky regrowth!

Isabel, my wonderful hairdresser friend gave me advice on the best brand/shade to go for in order to avoid any blonde to brown fiascos, I chose L'Oreal Casting Creme Gloss in Chesnut Honey 634 available from Boots, Superdrug, Tesco, etc for around £5.50.

Personally, I found the easiest way to dye my hair leaving the ends the original colour was to separate my hair into the layers it naturally falls into & tie up & cover the ends. As you can see I literally just bunged it into cling film (you can use foil, or whatever you find easiest), made sure there were no gaps for dye to sneak through & that was that. You don't have to be neat & perfect with ombre, which makes me very happy!

The photos above are the finished outcome. In the left photo you can see the ends of my hair are gradually lightening, which is the effect I wanted, but are still quite dark blonde. I decided to bleach bath the ends to lighten them a little more & you can just about see the outcome in the photo to the right. I have to apologise for the awful lighting in my flat, the roots of my hair are still the same brown shade, it's the lighting that makes them appear lighter in the second photo. The ends are a lot lighter in person, but I feel I still need to bleach bath or maybe even bleach the ends one more time as they're a mixture of pale yellow/white & ideally I want a nice even white tone. However, I will point out that most people will have no problem achieving the bleach blonde ombre tone, the only reason the bleach didn't take to my hair is due to the increased level of hormones in my body at the moment, causing the texture & condition of my hair, not to mention the outcome of hair dye to be slightly different than normal. Like I said this, for me, was the simplest way to achieve ombre hair as I would have had a nightmare bleaching the ends from brown. Some may find it's easier just to apply an all over colour & bleach the ends from scratch but a handful of people asked me to explain how I achieved my new hair colour. Once I've lightened the ends for (hopefully!) the final time I'll post a good quality photo to show the outcome.

As I stated earlier, most people would cover the ends, apply brown hair dye & have the ombre effect they were going for - I just happen to have very stubborn hair at the moment hence why I had to bleach the ends! Ideally I'd recommend visiting a salon for a hair procedure like this as it is slightly tricky if you're not used to dying your own hair & want it to come out perfect first time, but if you're as impatient & love DIY hair colouring as much as I do than I hope this post helped somewhat!

sleek blush - rose gold


Finally! I've been itching to get my paws on this for a while now & I could never seem to find it when I popped into my local Superdrug. I was looking for false lashes in a beauty store when I saw they had the Sleek range on sale also & hallelujah there it was!

The blush is the prettiest mixture of coral & pink with the smallest of gold flecks which gives a gorgeous undertone/glow when applied. The way light reflects off the gold colour looks great, as you can see from the photo above the tops of my cheeks appear to be highlighted when in fact it's just the gold glitter in the blush creating the effect. It's very well pigmented, one swipe with my finger was more than enough for a detailed swatch, meaning you don't need to use too much product in one application at all, probably gently tapping the tip of your blusher brush once will do! The key to this product is to blend well, blending well will create the perfect flawless blush effect, sometimes it's difficult as well pigmented blushers can look harsh & too obvious on the skin but like I said, blend blend blend & it looks great.

This product was definitely worth the wait, I love the packaging also. In some ways in an overall sense it reminds me of NARS Orgasm but for just a fraction of the price! It's definitely convinced me to delve deeper into the world of Sleek Cosmetics - I remember back in 2008 when I had a Youtube account for my tutorials that someone I subscribed to suggested their Eye Dust's to me, I should have listened back then! Next on my list is their Brow Kit, I'm sure I can expect good things!

the beauty parlour - face wash & scrub


Following my previous post I thought I'd share my two favourite products from The Beauty Parlour so far; their Daily Face Wash & Face Scrub.

Normally, my skin is quite sensitive, at the moment, it is ridiculously sensitive & prone to breakouts (thanks to these darling hormones), so I was a little apprehensive as to whether the products (particularly the scrub) would be too harsh & give that horrible skin fizzing/slight burning sensation when I used them. However, both products were really gentle & felt great on my skin. The scrub had just the right sized micro beads so it was actually quite relaxing to use, it also contains moisturising apricot kernel oil which they say is used to smooth the skin. I immediately noticed a difference after rinsing my face & following with the Daily Face Wash made my skin smoother & healthier looking than it has been for a long time!

The face wash contains peach kernel oil which again, moisturises the skin leaving it super smooth. Also, the wash gently exfoliates as it has added peach kernel beads which really makes your skin feel fresh & squeaky clean. As the wash is also an exfoliator there's no need to use these products one after the other too often, I would personally recommend using the Face Scrub twice, maybe three times a week - the healthy glow it gave my skin was too nice not to become addicted to! These are a must have for personal pamper evenings, suitable for those of us with sensitive skin & refreshingly beneficial!

the beauty parlour



This has got to be my new favourite brand. Browsing for a new face wash in Superdrug I spotted the line immediately due to it's packaging; adorable & right up my street! Of course, the most obvious observation to make at first glance is that it's quite similar to Dirty Works (exclusive to Sainsbury's) & Soap & Glory, it's easy to assume that this line will just be a cheaper, lower quality version of the brands but believe me, that is not the case!

The second thing that caught my eye was the price range of the products, at the moment everything is on offer for half price (can you tell I absolutely love a bargain?), usually most products range around the £5 - 7 mark which really isn't too bad considering the quality of the products I've tried so far. Any of these products would make a great Christmas gift, whether you're buying just the one for secret santa at work or grabbing a few items for mum, they wont disappoint & they certainly wont dent your bank account too much with this fantastic offer so close to the big day!

They have everything from mattyfying face paper to boob firming cream & I want to try all of it! As far as I'm aware the range is only available at Superdrug so if you're looking for a product along the lines of anything The Beauty Parlour has to offer I personally really recommend you take a look, lovely stuff!

reverse ombre hair - preview

Firstly, apologies for the awful quality (& the most miserable facial expression I have ever given) photograph this is just a quick Blackberry snap to give you an idea! Basically, I took the plunge & went ombre last night. My hair was a warm/golden blonde, I became bored of the dull colour & the bad condition & decided to go for a new look. I've seen ombre floating around everywhere for a while now & been very tempted, after a lot of debating & browsing hundreds of ombre hair photos it was actually my boyfriend who persuaded me to stop being a nervous sap & do it, surprise surprise!

I had to dye my hair in the reverse order, brown on the roots & leave the ends dry. It was a little tricky, lots of clipping the ends & faffing about with cling film! I'm going to post a tutorial on how to dye your hair ombre in the reverse order in case there is anyone else out there who would like to know, so stay tuned :)!

claire's accessories glitter polish


After finally achieving nails worthy of a makeover I decided to opt for a glitter polish. I've been trying to hunt down Model's Own Silver Spangle but had no luck - I'm guessing it's been discontinued or there's a really obvious answer that I'm completely oblivious to & another blogger will fill me in after reading this post! I had a good browse in Boots & Superdrug but couldn't find anything that tickled my fancy. I was browsing baby headbands in Claire's Accessories when I saw some beautiful peacock nail foils & discovered Claire's actually have a pretty decent nail art product range. I never noticed it before because unfortunately, I'm a sucker for marketing (if something has cute packaging there's a 99% chance I'll buy it regardless of what it actually is!) & the nail polishes are, as you can see, very plain packaging wise. Claire's should definitely invest in a packaging makeover, they have a great range of nail products & personally, I think a more eye-catching design would really benefit the sales. Anyway, I spotted & bought this polish which doesn't actually have a name or number for the shade as far as I'm aware.

It took around three coats to achieve full cover of the nail, some areas were still left blank so I dabbed the brush onto where needed covering & eventually achieved the full coverage I was after. I really, really love the final outcome, it's super shiny like a disco ball & looks very pretty! This polish is great on it's own or could be used with another colour, maybe as a tip or as part of a design. For £2.25 I would definitely recommend this product, great value for money! If you're after glitter polishes or any nail products in general make sure you have a look at what Claire's has to offer, I will be from now on!

broadway real life false nails


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Since I could chew I've struggled with the bad habit of biting my nails, no matter what I try I always find myself absent mindedly nibbling away. It's a horrible habit & as someone who loves nail art & having pretty nails it's quite frustrating, I honestly think they should have a nail biters support group for people like me. The only way they could be left alone long enough to grow to a decent length would be if I had acrylic nails applied. However, this obviously leaves them in a weak, fragile state & they would break way too easily for my liking, plus at £25 a pop the whole process was becoming a little tedious. I decided to invest in some false nails & take matters into my hands, quite literally.

I bought these Broadway Real Life nails from Boots in somewhat of a rush, I was trying to have a good look at all the brands but my boyfriend was with me & he turns into somewhat of a bored, small child when I force him to come make-up shopping with me. I saw they were a short cut design, looked small enough for my tiny fingers & were reasonably priced at £4.40 & snapped them up before my boyfriend collapsed of boredom. I also bought Nailene's Ultra Quick glue after reading good things over at llymlrs' blog (it seems that I wont buy a beauty product without reading reviews first these days!).

The nails come in a pack of 36 & are plain in colour which makes them an ideal polish/custom design base. They have a rounded corner, square tip design, which I feel makes them look obviously false & is something I wanted to avoid. When I matched up my real nails to the falsies the sizes were perfect, I didn't have to file any of the sides down at all. However, the bottom of the false nails were rounded, leaving an obvious gap between the false nail and the corners of my real nails, to avoid this I simply applied the nails upside down, meaning the tips were now rounded & natural looking & the base fit my real nails perfectly. The glue was very easy to apply & it really does dry in three seconds. I applied them two days ago & so far there's no sign of them becoming loose or budging at all! The only downside is I slightly filed the top of the nails & they've gone a little flimsy at the tips. Other than this I'm 110% happy with both products!

Anyone who's looking to break the acrylic nail addiction in favour of a cheaper, much less time consuming (I applied these in around ten minutes whilst watching the new Life's Too Short, bad idea because I stuck two of my fingers together as Johnny Depp stole my concentration.) alternative would definitely benefit from these nails. They have many different styles (such as French manicure, real short, sensible, etc) so you're sure to find something to cater to your needs. I'll definitely be purchasing these again, much easier than battling my everlasting nail biting addiction!

(Photos of the finished application will be in my next post :).)


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Firstly, apologies that this is once again a personal update as oppose to a beauty update which is, despite previous posts, the sole reason I started this blog. I am convinced that I jinxed myself by promising to commit more to my blogging in my last post. It seems that somehow I only have an hour or two spare during the day now after work, errands & housework are complete & I'm far too much of a sleepy kitty (mainly due to the dreaded third trimester fatigue) to play dress up during these precious hours.

I've ordered quite a few items to start working from home & visiting clients houses over the next few months/year. I've also enrolled in five evening/weekend courses, all hair & make-up related & am looking forward to starting them over the next month or so. Once I've completed them I can start being booked for weddings, proms, etc, which is a very exciting prospect for me :).

Once again, I very much doubt there are people out there affected by my lack of attention to this blog but sorry for the neglect - things are still very hectic & I only have 11 weeks & 2 days until my little princess arrives, eep! I'm planning on a quick shopping trip to Lakeside tonight for some beauty supplies so hopefully an update will occur sooner rather than later.

Much love. x
I decided to post a quick personal update - I've been far too busy for the past week!
After just moving into a new place everything is very hectic. In between hours of unpacking & sorting, buying various bits & pieces, antenatal appointments & gatherings with family/friends I haven't had the time to post as much. Thankfully everything seems (fingers crossed!) to have come into place & the new home is lovely!
This week I'm looking to expand my kit, maybe purchase a train case & start using a few friends to practice various looks on, so there'll be no neglect!