Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer

It's no secret I have a bit of a thing for concealers, especially when they're creamy blendable and high coverage. I finally gave into the hype and bought the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Caramel after constantly hearing about how amazing it is and I'm so glad I did! It really is the perfect concealer. It has such a light, easy to blend texture but packs a serious punch when it comes to coverage. A little goes a very long way.

I generally tend to use two different concealers, one for any blemishes and one for under my eyes. This one works really well for both so if you're new to concealers and you're not sure which to try, you can't go wrong with this one! The doe foot applicator makes it really easy to add product just where you want it, which I tend to do before blending it out with my finger or a brush. I think this concealer may have just made it's way to the top spot, and that's really saying something, I do have rather a lot of them!

What's your favourite concealer?

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Tuesday, 23 September 2014

In Conversation: Gary Cockerill

I was offered the wonderful opportunity of interviewing celebrity makeup artist Gary Cockerill last week, so naturally I jumped at the chance! I'd prepared a few questions in advance and was poised and ready with pen and paper at hand to jot down his answers. Here's how things went down.

What inspired you to become a makeup artist?

To be honest, it's something I fell into. I worked down the coal mines for 6 months just after leaving school. When they shut down I saved and decided to move to London. I studied graphic design and illustration and had a job painting mannequins' faces, I then realised I'd probably earn more painting real people's faces so I decided to that!

There are now a huge number of aspiring makeup artists as well as those who are already qualified trying to get their career started. What advice would you give them to help them stand out from the crowd?

I was doing a very pretty look when everyone else was doing a grungy look in the early 90s so I stood out. I got booked for magazines like Loaded and GQ and it all happened overnight. Of course, things are very different now, my advice would be to find your niche. Try and develop your own unique style and don't copy what other people are doing. Work really hard and don't give up, it's a great profession!

What is your favourite makeup brand?

It's far too difficult to pick one! My kit is a mix of lots of different brands. I think having healthy, well prepped skin is really important, for that I love using the Facacia skincare range which is antibacterial and great for acne as well as using the Silk and Sonic Face Brush which gives skin a deep clean.

If you were restarting your career today, what would you do differently? If anything!

I wouldn't do anything differently! It just happened for me, it was never planned, but I'm so glad it did!

What/ Who do you look to for inspiration?

Anything and everything, from walking down the street and seeing someone to a magazine, someone's life story, anything interesting or original.

Who is your favourite celebrity to work with?

I've worked with so many great people, it was great working with The Coors when they started out as well as Liberty X and Eva Longoria. One of my highlights was definitely working with David Beckham when he did the speed boat scene for the Olympics opening ceremony. I still get a real buzz from working with stars!

Which is your favourite magazine to work with?

I love working with women's magazines but I love working with men's magazines even more. The men's glossies like GQ and Esquire are favourites. I love doing sexy glamorous makeup and I often get to go to different locations for the shoots.

Who is your favourite photographer to work with?

It was amazing working with David Bailey. it was like working with an artist. The pictures always looked like they would belong more in an art gallery. I loved working with Clive Arrowsmith too, I worked with him solidly for 5 years. I loved working with the old greats, they don't rely on digital. People are far too reliant on post production now. I miss the days of polaroids and contact sheets.

What inspired you to bring out your own range of lashes?

I always did eyes well, it's what I'm known for. On shoots I always ended up combining different kinds of lashes to get the look I wanted. I was then approached to design a range of my own, they're made of natural hair and are very lightweight.

What is the worst thing someone can do when it comes to their makeup?

Not adapting their look to suit them! I see women in their 40s and 50s still wearing their makeup the same way they did when they were 21. Every now and then you should go through your makeup bag, get rid of anything stale or out of date and give the whole thing a refresh. People often think it's the only look that works for them but that's not true, they should have a little fun with it and experiment more!

Thanks so much for answering my questions Gary!

I hope you all enjoyed seeing something a little different here on the blog!

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Monday, 22 September 2014

New to the Mix: Skincare

Recently, quite a few of my skincare products ran out at once, I had a rummage through my stocks and luckily found a few products that I thought would fit into my routine nicely. I'll do full reviews once I've been using them a while but here's a quick snapshot of what they are and what they do!

A calming, soothing and plumping spray on skin tonic with a rose water base. I absolutely love this, it's so cooling and refreshing on the skin. I've been using it the last few mornings and occasionally during the day too! 

I'd been using this earlier on in the year but it went neglected when the weather got warmer and I needed something a little lighter. It's an eye cream I seem to go back to every autumn/winter for a bit of extra moisture and this year is no exception. 

Seeing as I've recently run out of my usual moisturising mask, I thought I'd give this one a go. I've used it a couple of times so far and was surprised to see my skin definitely looking plumper. This will definitely make a good 'pre-party' mask!

I'm really looking forward to trying this one, I love using facial oils in my routine, especially with the weather getting colder. This one is described as an ultra light blend of 10 natural oils plus vitamin E and C. 

Have you added any new products into your routine recently?

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Saturday, 20 September 2014

Object of Desire: Rachel Zoe Shiloh Cutout Jumpsuit

It's no secret I love pieces I consider to be 'wardrobe essentials'. Although a jumpsuit isn't necessarily something that would fall into that category I absolutely love this one for how versatile it is. It could easily be dressed up or down and I can definitely see it becoming something I'd wear for a long time!

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Thursday, 18 September 2014

A Day at Kew Gardens

Kew gardens is such a beautiful place, I'd been there once before a few years ago and loved it so thought it would be nice to go again. I took quite a lot of pictures and had a really hard time narrowing them down for this post but there are still so many! I hope you like them!

Overall it was a lovely day, especially because the weather was good. We spent the entire day walking around and were thoroughly exhausted. I still can't believe there's such a huge garden in London! The restaurant is really good too, we had lunch there in the afternoon, I had roast vegetables with goats cheese and barley in a coriander pesto and it was absolutely delicious. I'm definitely going to be attempting to recreate it at home! Later on, just before we headed home, we popped back in for tea and cake, we had treacle tart and chocolate cake and they were both equally scrummy! 

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Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Current Skincare Loves

I seem to be on a bit of a skincare roll at the moment. My skin is by no means perfect but it does look the best it's looked in years. I think it's mostly down to the fact that I've been more compliant with my skincare routine and I've found some products that have been working really well for me. Here are a few of my favourites!

A really great 3 in 1 mask that decloggs, exfoliates and moisturises. I've been using it twice a week and my skin always feels clean, fresh and moisturised afterwards. 

This has been my cleanser of choice for the evenings, particularly when it comes to removing makeup. It's easily massaged on and rinses of as a milky liquid taking all the day's grime and makeup away with it. It also leaves my skin feeling super soft and nourished.

I absolutely love this night cream, it's definitely the best I've ever tried. It leaves my skin feeling so plumped up, soft and just generally very healthy. It's expensive but very much worth it, I opened this tub 3 months ago and I still have over half left!

A toner that contains glycolic and lactic acid which exfoliates the skin and helps improve skin radiance. I've been using it every night and loving the results, my skin looks brighter and my pores less noticeable.

I've yet to review this one in full as I haven't been using it quite as long as the others. Don't worry, a full review is in the works! This stuff is truly amazing, I've only been using it for a month and my dark marks and pigmentation have almost completely disappeared! I honestly can't quite believe the results! My skin looks so much clearer and even toned, I really wish I'd taken some 'before' pictures!

Are there any skincare products you've been loving lately?

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Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Good Things Manuka Honey Mask

I've not had the Good Things Manuka Honey Radiance Face Mask for very long but I can honestly say it's one of the best I've ever tried. The best thing about it is that it's a 3 in 1, it contains white clay, which like any clay draws out impurities and helps unclog congested skin. Papaya extract, a natural Alpha Hydroxy Acid which chemically exfoliates the skin making it look more radiant and finally Manuka Honey and Beeswax to nourish and hydrate the skin. Being someone who frequently buys and uses all 3 of these kinds of mask, finding an all in one is such a great time saver!

I find my skin looks and feels so much fresher, brighter and softer after using it. I use it about twice a week which has been working really well for me. It definitely helps with unclogging and radiance, if I can feel a few spots coming on I find using this can nip them in the bud and any blocked poses around my nose look a lot better. I think the addition of honey/beeswax makes it a lot more comfortable on the skin and doesn't leave it feeling tight and dry afterwards but it's not a mask I'd reach for if I was specifically looking to add more moisture to my skin as it's not the most moisturising. It is still a clay mask after all! 

I think it's a great mask all round mask for all skin types but I'd particularly recommend it to those who either don't have time to faff about with lots of different masks, if you're on a budget or if you're new to masks as it's a great all rounder. I'd be quite happy to use this as my only face mask as I could always just use some facial oil if I felt my skin needed some extra moisture. It's also such a bargain for only £5.99 from Boots!

What are your favourite face masks?

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Monday, 15 September 2014


I've decided to rename my nail posts #ManiMonday! They were previously NOTD but seeing as I don't do nail posts everyday I though it was maybe a bit misleading. Either way, it's still a post all about what I'm currently rocking on my nails!

Today I decided to try out a bit of nail art, I've dabbled in the past but never really blogged about it. I usually try out some fancy design and then end up removing it as soon as I'm finished. Usually because I'm not happy with the finish (I like it to look really neat) or because I decided the design isn't very 'me'. This time I thought I'd try something simple, clean and minimal and I'm actually relatively pleased with the result! It's still not as perfect as I'd like it to be but I think with a bit more practice I can get there!

I applied Avon Nailwear Pro in Loving Lavender to all of my nails and then used one of my favourite polishes, Sephora Colour Hit Nail Colour in Will You Jump? on just under half of the nail on my ring finger. I used a piece of cellotape to get a neat line but it's still not quite as crisp as I'd like. I think the trick is to wait till the nail varnish is completely dry before removing the tape. I love the design as well as how the colours look together and I'll definitely be trying out a few different variations in the near future! 

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