Thursday, 31 January 2013

Monthly Favourites: January

Monthly Favourites: January 

Diesel 'Loverdose' perfume 
I was lucky enough to receive this as a christmas gift and it has fastly become my new favourite scent! For those who have never given this a sniff, please do! It has strong liquorice and vanilla notes, aswell as mandarin, star anise and dry woods notes which makes for a long lasting, gorgeous scent which I love! 

Loreal 'telescopic' mascara 
I grabbed this beauty in Tkmaxx for a bargainous £3.99! I'd heard a few bloggers and vloggers rave about this so thought I'd give it a whirl! It is amazing, my lashes have never looked so long (no exaggeration) and I've received no end of compliments since changing to this mascara! Unfortunately Tkmaxx no longer have it, but I wouldn't think twice about paying the full price for this. I love it! 

Bourjois healthy mix concealer 'vanille' 
This is my go-to concealer now that I've changed from the raved about collection lasting perfection concealer (which I do like). I found the collection one a bit drying and in all honesty I am just not a fan on the doe foot wand applicators when it comes to concealers - I find this liquid tube far more hygienic and easy to use! 

Rimmel stay matte pressed powder 
 I reviewed this powder earlier this month in this post, but this has now made it's way into my favourites and daily makeup bag, just thought I'd give it a shoutout. Nice on Rimmel! 

Real Techniques contour brush 
This has probably been my most used brush this month as I've been using my Chanel bronzer for contouring. The brush is the perfect size and washes very well, although I haven't washed it for this picture *bad blogger* 

Maybelline 24hr colour tattoo 'On and on bronze' 
This has to be one of my all time favourite eyeshadows, other than my naked palettes! It applies like a dream and lasts all day! It's super easy for on the go as you don't really need a brush to apply this, so it's great for everyday wear - plus the shade is gorgeous! 

Mac MSF Soft and Gentle 
Another product I have recently reviewed (you can read that post here) I am absolutely in love with this stunning highlighter. It really makes me feel lovely and finishes any look. My life needed some sparkle, and here it is! 

Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel 
I've recently been using this daily after leaving it abandoned in a drawer for a few months - and I really do like it! I use this for contouring and sometimes as an all over bronzer for the face just to add some colour. It's not the most practical of packaging, but it is beautiful nevertheless. 

Maybelline colour sensational lipstick - 852 'coral pearl' 
This beauty lives in my handbag, its a gorgeous coral shade which is super easy to wear and suits most occassions (day or night or even uni!) It's a your lips but better colour and I bloomin' well love it! 

Elf studio mineral powder brush 
Another brush has made it's way into my makeup bag this month! This mineral powder brush is an ideal size for travel as it's not too big but it's fluffy enough to use for a finishing powder or blusher! I really like the elf studio line brushes - affordable but generally awesome quality. 

Phew! Well done if you made it this far, thanks for reading! I'd love to hear some of your favourites too! Or have you tried any of the above? 


Saturday, 26 January 2013

Instagram Post #2 SNOW!!

My week in Instagram #2

1.  Bath & body works goodies from Canada which you can see here. 2. New Mac lipstick in 'Speed Dial'. 3. My new favourite product which I reviewed in this post. 4. The snow which resulted in me being stranded at my dad's house. 5. Generic snow & tree picture. 6. A cheeky little shopping spree. 7. The jumper I've been living in this week. 8. Bare faced photo, but I ombred my hair this week! 9. Even more snow. 

I've not had a busy week due to all the snow we've had in wales (well, the UK in general!) I've ventured into uni for a meeting about my dissertation, which didn't go too well and the rest of my lectures were cancelled due to the weather. I've basically spent the rest of my week shopping, working in the evening for a couple of hours and then coming home to bed to watch some movies.  So far this week I've watched 'The Campaign' and 'Ted' on Blinkbox which were both hilarious and definitely helped to pass the time during the snow! Oh, I also watched 'Gangster Squad' at the cinema, I'm a right movie buff lately now I've got a cineworld unlimited card!  

Hope you have had a lovely week too, and enjoyed the snow a little bit! P.s, do you have any film recommendations or all time favourites?


Friday, 25 January 2013



So, I think I may be the last person on the ombre bandwagon but I'm officially on it! You may have seen in last weeks instagram post that I accidentally dyed my blonde hair brown thanks to a rubbish box dye from schwarzkopf, and I hated it. So when browsing Asda for a blonde dye in an attempt to cover the brown I had a wild spontaneous moment (a rarity) and decided to OMBRE! 

I purchased the Loreal Paris Wild Ombre hair kit (No2) which was £6.50 in Asda, but you can also get it in the majority of stores such as boots for £6.99 and a bargainous £5.99 at superdrug. I'm not going to do an in-depth review of this, as I'm not a hair professional I'm just going to let you know how I got on with it! 

The Kit includes: 
1 user guide 
1 pair of 'high quality' gloves
1 expert brush 
 1 tube of lightening creme
1 tube of lightening powder
1 bottle of developer creme 
1 bottle of conditioning shampoo

As the instructions suggest, you mix the lightening powder and lightening creme in with the bottle of developer creme - this will form the hair 'dye'. It is then recommended that you split your hair into two halves, as if you were going to put pigtail bunches in your hair and this allows you to ombre the same length of hair on both sides. You then apply the 'dye' to the expert brush and simply comb this through your hair, starting at the back of the bunch and working your way towards the front. 

The picture on the left shows my blonde hair which was just before christmas, and then the right picture shows how dark it turned after using a stupid hair dye from said company. So it was pretty dark in comparison! 

The kit recommends to ombre from ear length for medium lengths of hair, which is what I did. I have pretty thick hair which usually takes 2 boxes of dye to cover it, and I only used one ombre kit to achieve this and I actually only used 2/3rds of a bottle. Once you have saturated the desired sections of hair you are recommended to leave it on for 25-40minutes depending on the desired level of lightening i.e the longer you leave it, the lighter it will be. I actually only left mine for 20 minutes, as my hair has been bleached previously (about 9 months ago) and I didn't want to put it through too much! I then washed it off and used the conditioning shampoo provided, which didn't leave my hair feeling too great at all. It felt quite dry and not at all nourished which I expected, so I just popped my trusty Aussie Hair Care 3 minute miracle conditioner on it and it worked a treat. Here's the result. 

 You'll have to excuse the bare face but it was about 9am in the morning before I had ventured out. As you can see the ends of my hair from ear length are considerably lighter than the rest of my hair. The kit I used was no2 which is recommended for dark blonde to light brown natural hair which is what I have, but it was a little darker due to the hair dying disaster. Anyway, I would say that the the representation on the box was true to colour and I was very happy with the result. My hair doesn't feel too dry and doesn't look frazzled, it is sometimes a little brassy but as I said, it had previously been bleached and I use a purple toning shampoo once a week or so! Overall I am very happy with the result, it's a nice change from an all over colour and the tops of my hair are now pretty much my natural colour so it's pretty low maintenance for now. 

Are you a fan of the Ombre hair style? Have you used this kit before? I think it's a steal considering this would cost me £40+ at the salon! 


Thursday, 24 January 2013

Mac MSF - Soft & Gentle

Mac MSF - Soft & Gentle 

Okay, I know this is probably one of the most raved about and reviewed items in the whole entire blogosphere but I just had to post some pretty pictures and give you my two pence worth! It is none other than Mac's MSF in 'Soft and Gentle'. Personally, I see Mac as a high end brand and I am lucky if I can afford to splurge on some products and treat myself, it's not a brand I own a lot from but the few items I own I love, and I also think about them a lot before I buy them. After all, I am a student with a budget! 

Mac's MSF soft and gentle retails at a whopping £21.50 in store, however I was lucky enough to encourage my sister to grab this at the airport for me - although I think it was basically the same price after you take into account the conversion rates and charges for using a uk card! The question is, is it actually worth it?  

YES! Oh my gosh, this is possibly the prettiest product I have owned. Not only do you get a whopping 10g of product which will last you a good year or two, it also has several uses! Mac describes this as " A luxurious velvet-soft powder with a high-frost metallic finish" which can be used to highlight cheeks, brows and anywhere else on the body. And it's exactly that. A gorgeous peach/champagne highlight which works well to brighten cheekbones and highlight other areas such as under the brow bone. I've also used this to add a bit of shimmer on top of eyeshadows and as an all-over finish when I fancy a bit of sparkle. Considering the fact that I have never found a highlighter that I've actually got on with, and that hasn't made me look like a complete and utter disco-ball (liquid highlighters, I'm looking at you) then this product is 100% worth the money. It's going to last a very long time, and is just an absolutely beautiful shade! 

Are you a fan of Mac MSF's? Any other skint students out there who just can't help lusting over pretty makeup? I'm off to work now, and then going to stay at my dad's house tonight and then I plan on enjoying a good few days off uni and work - although I do have a lot of uni work to be getting on with. I procrastinate so so much these days. I also have a giveaway running on my blog which you can enter here


Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Bath & Body Works

Bath & Body Works goodies 

Okay, I bet your all wondering how little old me in the UK managed to get my hands on some bath and body works goodies (or maybe I'm the only one who is ridiculously excited.) Well, lucky me has a bloomin' awesome sister who decided to bring some goodies back from Canada for me as a gift (bonus sister points!) 

Here's what I got: 
Warm Vanilla Sugar fragrance mist
Paris Amour fragrance mist 
Sparkling Blackberry Woods body lotion
Twilight Woods shower gel 
3 mini pocket bacs - bubblegum, party & cookie dough

Every single item smells delicious, and the scents linger around for a good few hours, even on the little cute hand bacteria gels! I always always see US and Canadian blogs and youtube videos sharing bath and body works hauls, and always end up very jealous that we can't get those items in the UK. I'm thinking that now London have a Victoria Secrets and a Forever 21 that they should hurry up and get a Sephora, Target and Bath and Body Works! Next on my list are some candles! 


** p.s don't forget to enter my giveaway for a chance to win £50 of Kurt Geiger Jewellery enter here **

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Product Review : Rimmel stay matte

Product Review : Rimmel Stay Matte - Long lasting pressed powder 

Stay Matte in shade Transparent - available in boots for £3.99

For a very long time I've been looking for the perfect powder. My criteria being a) mattifying b) long lasting c) afforadable & d) NOT orange. Finally, I think I may have found it in Rimmel's 'Stay Matte' pressed powder in the shade 'transparent' - which is a bargainous £4 in the majority of drugstores and supermarkets! 

What Rimmel say....
Stay Matte boasts a matte finish which lasts up to 6 hours, and provides an all over 'natural looking' and 'long wearing' finish to the skin, as well as evening out skin tone. Furthemore, 'stay matte' is free from fragrance, parabens, oils and talc which means it shoudln't clog up your pores. 

What I say ...
As someone who favours the matte look, as opposed to the natural dewy look, I find the powder gives an ideal finish. It does even out my skintone, and gives my face an all over colour adding to the 'flawless' look I am after. I do like to add some shine back in using a highlighter or perhaps a cream blusher, but in general I tend to use less of this product on my cheeks anyway. As for my t-zone, which has always been a problem area .. this powder works miracles. It seems I have finally found a powder that actually keeps my skin matte,so no more oily nose by lunchtime for me! If I was out for the duration, so perhaps 8am until 8pm on days where I have uni and work then I will pop this in my bag and re-apply just before work at around 5, but as a general note, I do find this to last longer than other powders. Previously, I have found Rimmel powders often show up 'orangey' or just not my colour, but this transparent shade fits perfectly with my foundation which is usually ivory/vanilla. 

Overall - I absolutely love this powder, it is well within my student budget, keep my oily t-zone at bay and lasts throughout the day. A definite recommendation and a thumbs up from me! 

Have you tried this powder? What are your thoughts? 
p.s any other recommendations for a pesky oily t-zone ladies? 


Monday, 14 January 2013

£50 Kurt Geiger Jewellery Giveaway

£50 worth of Kurt Geiger Jewellery - GIVEAWAY! 

Recently I passed 400 GFC followers, and this is after taking a 4month break from blogging, so as a thank-you for sticking around and for welcoming me back with open arms - I have decided to host a giveaway! Of course new followers are welcome to enter, but a special thanks to those who have stuck around through my absence - I'm so glad to be back to blogging, I really did miss it! 

The prizes are: 
Kurt Geiger 'Lizzie Bracelet' - rrp £20 
Kurt Geiger 'Lizzie Necklace' - rrp£30 

ONE lucky reader will win both items, which is £50 worth of fabulous Kurt Geiger jewellery! Good luck! 

*UK/Ireland Entrants only, apologies to international followers. Ends 27th Jan 2013*


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Instagram Post #1

My week in Instagram #1 

1. Finally using my naked 2 palette. 2. Stupid hair dye turning my hair brown. 3. Pretty dresses from New Look. 4. My fave 'healthy' snacks from boots. 5. Trying to start eating breakfast. 6. I have a new twitter account, come follow me. 7. Watching 'Pitch Perfect' in the cinema. 8. This gel is amazing, killer tootache. 9. First malteaster bunny of the year & already addicted. 

Hope you all had a good week! Leave your instagram names below & I'll give you a follow. Mine is 'jessicarowlandxo' 


Friday, 11 January 2013

MAC - Plum Foolery

MAC - Plum Foolery

For today's post I thought I would share my all time favourite blush. Now, choosing a favourite blush was quite a task for me as I have so many, and I think they are probably the prettiest and most lovely make-up items to have. They can complete a look, or completely change it and I use blush everyday without fail - and 9 times out of 10 it is 'Plum Foolery' by MAC. 

In fact, this was my very first MAC purchase at a whopping €18.50 at the duty free in Malaga Airport! I floated around the Mac stand for quite some time, swatching an armful of blushes and finally decided on this beauty; 'Plum Foolery.' It is described on the website as faintly plum and at the time this was like no other blush I owned - I was more of a subtle pink/soft peach kinda gal.

Plum Foolery is a gorgeous deep pink/purple almost mauvey colour and has a teenie tiny amount of gold shimmer throughout, this is barely noticeable for those who do not favour a shimmering blush - I feel this just  gives it a natural and dewy finish without looking like a disco ball on your cheeks. As with most Mac blushes, the pigmentation is splendid, and as this is from the sheer tone blush line it is subtle enough for everyday where yet also build-able for a more dramatic look. On first appearance I assumed this would belong in my makeup bag during only the winter months - but actually, I adore this all year around! 

Have you tried this shade? What is your favourite mac blush, or for that matter any blush? (please don't tell me I am the only blush addict around here!!) 


Thursday, 10 January 2013

Naked vs Naked2

Urban Decay Naked vs Naked 2 - A quick comparison

As always, I am late onto the bandwagon and recently received the Naked 2 palette by Urban Decay for Christmas! I've been an owner and lover of the original Naked palette since I first set eyes on it, I'm a sucker for neutral shades and shimmer. Just me? Anyway, in my head I had decided that I did not need the second edition, as I had enough neutral eyeshadows to sink a ship, they were probably very similar shades and how could I possibly need any more eyeshadow?! Christmas time rolled around and it was the first thing I added to my list. I. have. no. will. power. 

The packaging (& freebies)

Naked Original - Very compact, looks very luxurious with a velvet touch and gold lettering. It isn't the most sturdy of packaging, and as you can see it does rub off and become a bit grubby after a while. Comes with a mini Urban Decay Primer Potion, which is absolutely fabulous in my opinion, and works a treat as well as being great for popping in your makeup bag. You are also provided with an urban decay shadow brush, which I bloomin' well love. 

Naked 2 - again, quite compact design but a teenie bit bigger than the original. House in a metal tin, it is a little sturdier than the original and can take a few knocks and bumps in your handbag or for travel purposes. I imagine this will scratch etc after some time, but I'm hoping the logo won't rub off like the first one. This comes with a mini Urban Decay lipgloss, which doesn't particularly go with the palette in the same was as the primer potion, but it's a cute little addition nevertheless. You are also provided with a double ended eye brush, which has the shadow brush and also a blending brush - which again, I love & use all the time! 

Naked Original - Virgin, Sin, Naked(matte), Sidecar, Buck(matte), Half Baked, Smog, Darkhorse, Toasted, Hustle & Creep. Generally warmer shades, a lot of gold tones and very nice for night time looks as well as daytime, also has two matte shades, both of which are brown which fit in well with the rest of the shades.  

Naked 2 - Foxy (matte), Hald Baked, Bootycall, Chopper, Tease (matte), Snakebite, Suspect, Pistol, Verve, Ydk, Busted & Blackout (matte.) Cooler tones, and a fabulous matte black shade which is great for the lash lines. Some shades in the palette feel a little bit similar to the original, such as chopper which is very similar to toasted. Also, there is a repeat of half baked - which I find a bit puzzling. 

Naked Original - My favourites 

Virgin, Sin, Naked, Sidecar, Halfbaked and Toasted 

Naked 2 - My favourites 

Foxy, Chopper, Tease, Suspect, Verve, Ydk

Overall, I don't think I could choose between them. In my make-up obsessed mind, I need both. However, I could get away without some of my other eyeshadows, in terms of neutrals these are all I really use and could get away with just using these. Although probably the most expensive make-up items I own, they are well and truly worth it as I have definitely had my use out of them and they will last a very long time. Overall, a happy Jess. 

Do you prefer the original or Naked 2? Am I the only person who couldn't possibly choose between them? 



Monday, 7 January 2013

Ebay basket - Home Edition

My current ebay basket - the home edition 

Okay, so I might still live at home with my family but I still love pretty little things for the house. My personal style is anything shabby chic, floral or vintage looking with some of my favourite items involving tea cups, cute ditsy prints, pretty pastels and shabby wooden items. I seriously cannot wait to have an entire house to decorate, there's something about cute little house-y bit's that excite me and make me want to be a grown up with my very own kitchen. I also love ebay, and it's the perfect place to pick up some bargains for the smaller items - so here's a quick look into some of the items from my current ebay basket. I've included a direct link to the item, just in case any one else loves cute little home items as much as I do! 

1. Rainbow meausring spoons  - £1.79 (free p+p) 
I think these would definitely come in handy for all the baking I like to do, and are also cute and colourful, not bad for less than £2.
2. Pretty rose garland decoration - £2.39 (freep+p)
I've been searching for something similar for a while now, I plan to wrap this around my bed as it will match my room perfectly and adds a little something extra to a boring white bed frame. 

3. Woodland Rabbit night light - £5.99 (freep+p)
This is just adorable, I love the fact it is LED and is shaped like a woodland creature. What more is there to say? I love it! 

4. Keep Calm & Carry On photo pegs - £1.99 (freep+p)
I'm looking to get some of my favourite instagram pictures printed (btw, you can follow me on instagram my user name is 'jessicarowlandxo' and I am addicted!) I thought these pegs would be cute to hang my fave snaps up on a bit of string. Easy and simple, and taking up less space than a gabillion picture frames. 

5. Retro hanging kitchen sign - £1.12 (£0.70 p+p)
When I am an official grown up in  my own house, I want to hang cute little signs everywhere. One for the bathroom, kitchen and loo - just in case I wake up one morning and forget my way around. (You never know!) 

6. Cute and floral light switch cover  - £1.39 (free p+p) 
I've had a few different ones of these, and even made a DIY version but I just love the cute floral print of this one and it's a cheap and effective way to spruce up something that was otherwise a boring white square. 

7. Set of 2 shabby chic bird & heart hangers  - £2.80 (free p+p)
Is it just me or can you not get enough of little hanging decorations? Birds, hearts and stars .. I love them all. Cream also goes with the majority of decor in any room & this is a pack of two for a not too shabby price (see what I did there?) 

Do you plan home decor even if you don't have your own home? Or for those who do, do you use ebay to find some bargains for the home? I'll definitely be picking up a few of these soon!