Sunday, 23 September 2012

autumn series: nails

(L-R: Nails Inc 'Porchester Square', Essie 'Playa Del Platinum', Essie 'Cocktail Bling', Barry M 'Raspberry', Barry M 'Red/Black', Models Own 'Red N Black')

Honestly, how crappy was this summer? I can't speak for everyone but here in Ireland it was sticky and humid and pissing rain. Every day. Summer colours were inappropriate but so were winter colours. I can't have been the only one who was totally stuck in a rut and frankly, dying for autumn. In celebration of its long-awaited arrival I'm going to do a series on a few of my picks from my collection of what I'll be wearing this autumn; starting with nails and continuing with lips, base & eyes, clothes and finally culminating in a wishlist. First port of call is nails and while my nails truthfully look like shit (I'm back in college so it would seem that naughty stress-induced nail-biting has resumed) and are being given a strong dose of Nail Envy these are the colours I'm looking forward to wearing throughout autumn/winter 2012.

Nudes and winter pastels are always going to be a favourite of mine because more than anything they look really beautiful in the bottle. I recently purchased the Special Edition Jubilee bottle of Nails Inc's hero shade 'Porchester Square' after coveting it for months. While the glam lid is arguably the best thing about this polish it truly is a beautiful shade and has fast become one of my favourites in my collection. It's the closest to Chanel's 'Frenzy' I can afford and it's just the perfect taupey-lavendery-nudey colour.
Essie 'Playa Del Platinum' is a shade I never, ever hear about. It's quite easily duped in OPI 'Did you 'ear about Van Gogh?' and Models Own 'Concrete Mixer' (I have both - d'oh) so if those brands are your preferences or are more accessible to you then that's where you'll find this shade. It's just a nice beige-nude that looks a bit like concrete but..prettier.
Finally Essie's 'Cocktail Bling' from last years winter collection is a stunning muted pastel blue with grey undertones. It's not the most flattering on my skintone but I wear it anyway and just find it to be a really beautiful, elegant shade. As I've stated before I don't buy Essie from Boots but from eBay and my seller of choice can be found here.

When I'm not doing pretty muted colours I'll be going for sophisticated yet vampy shades (you'll see a pattern emerging in my lipsticks post!). I find high-street brands (as in those found in Boots) are great for shades like this and you don't need to spend silly amounts on a red polish from OPI or whoever.
Barry M's 'Raspberry' shade is a beautiful, bright Christmassy red. It has no orange undertones whatsoever and pulls a little plum in some lights, making it perfect for this season. Formula is ok but nothing stand-out as is usually the situation with Barry M but the polishes are cheap as chips and the colour selection is great.
'Red/Black' also by Barry M is a shade that I wore throughout winter last year, constantly painting and repainting my nails with this famous Chanel dupe. It looks black in the photo but on the nails it's just really a very dark wine shade and it really flattering against my pale skin.
Finally, my black of choice is Models Own 'Red n Black'. I initially bought this hoping for a better quality version of the Barry M shade but was slightly disappointed to find that it applies nearly jet black and not the rich burgundy shade I expected. However it is slightly warmer than the traditional black nail polishes which I rocked in my emo days and it is a lot more forgiving on the hands. It also looks quite good in times like now when my nails are shitty and short.

So what nail polishes will you be wearing this A/W? I'm so excited to paint my nails these shades, get a big woolly jumper and a hot water bottle! x

Friday, 21 September 2012

my first Origins experience

Last night I was feeling a bit sorry for myself for being too unorganised to score tickets to the Caitlin Moran event in Dublin and finally purchased the Origins Drink Up Intensive mask. This is how about 98% of my purchases are made; I'm sad because I didn't do my homework for college, so I need a new lipstick, et cetera.
It was a bit of an impulsive purchase if I'm honest and I would normally plan and budget before spending thirty euro on a face mask, and originally I slipped into Arnotts (Which is a little like the Dublin version of Selfridges, I think) just to have a browse. I was eyeing up the Origins counter which was a little cramped as they had some sort of event on later that evening when I was approached by the sales assistant who was really excellent at her job. She was chatty, friendly, knowledgeable and, most importantly, not too pushy. I felt good about my purchase as I left the store, and still haven't felt the dreaded buyers remorse just yet (as one often does when spending THIRTY EURO on a face mask).

I was also given the chance to sample three of Origins bestsellers as they were running some sort of promotion (lovely sales lady said they do this every September and that my purchase was well-timed). So with the popping of my Origins cherry came three itsy-bitsy freebies for me to try out. I was given a list of ten products and told to choose three; I walked away with 15mls of their famous VitaZing moisturiser, 7mls of Dr Weil for Origins Mega-Bright serum, and 5mls of GinZing eye cream. Success.

I tried out the mask for the first time last night, and I can confirm it is love at first sight, or first use. I applied quite liberally - maybe too liberally, a lot comes out when you squeeze the tube - but by morning my skin had, as promised, drunk up the moisture. My skin is now plump, juicy and glowing and my makeup has lasted beautifully throughout a day of running around trying to catch buses and not be late for lectures. Also, important to note, as always, that it smells beautiful, a really yummy apricot scent.
In terms of value for money, you get a whopping 100ml of product which will last you forever. That, coupled with the thoroughly enjoyable shopping experience and the dinky little samples makes a very happy customer. Thirty euro and sixty cent very well spent.

I hope you enjoyed reading this and I would love to hear any feedback. If you've tried out this mask or you have any other Origins product to recommend me I'd love to hear about them. Thanks so much for reading! x

Sunday, 9 September 2012

bad blogger

I can't believe it's been three weeks since I've posted here! The last month has been beyond hectic - my room has been ripped to shreds and we're currently putting it back together - new floors, walls, wardrobes, furniture, everything! It's hard work - then last week I braced myself and headed down to Stradbally in Laois for the Electric Picnic music festival. I think I'm a bit too boring for festivals and I definitely missed my home comforts down there but I'm glad I went as I couldn't have missed the bands playing. Then, with barely a night's sleep in between I jetted off to Paris for four days with four of my girlfriends. I am in love with Paris and I miss it already. I got back on Thursday but between working and shopping for university - I'm returning for my second year tomorrow - blogging has fallen by the wayside. I'm determined to change this, however. Hopefully semi-normal posting will resume during the week and will become more methodical as I work out the balance between college and my part time job. In beauty news - I managed to haul 1.5 litres of Bioderma whilst in France as well as some Caudalie goodies but nothing huge or majorly excited - maybe expect a post in the future about my opinions on French pharmacie skincare.

I'd love to hear any news you have or what you've all been up to - if you're starting back in school or college (here in Ireland that's what we call 'uni') let me know how you're feeling about it, I don't think I'm too happy to be returning to be honest! Also let me know if you were at Electric Picnic or just whatever comes into your mind after reading this post!