Sunday, 22 March 2015

Fashion & Beauty - Spring time girly outfit

So as the sun was shining for two days in a row (very rare in Ireland!), I took the opportunity to do an outfit look in the sunshine - never know when we might see Mr Sun again!

The navy polka dot dress is AX Paris. I'm not sure what was the original cost as I actually bought it in a charity shop two years ago in Dublin for €5! The nude heels are Penneys and I bought them last year. I don't wear them that often as I find they make me look much taller, and as I am already 5ft 10 in height I don't need help in that department!

As for my hair, I washed it that morning and used a tiny bit of Argan oil hair treatment at the ends where it was dry before blowdrying it straight and then used my GHD. I personally prefer messy hair though, so I curled it randomly in big sections using my Remington curler wand. I will be doing a blog post soon on hair care.

Makeup wise, it's very similar to what I have done before. I cleansed my skin with Boots Tea Tree and Witch Hazel foaming wash before priming my skin with Nivea Daily Essentials Express Hydration primer. I used the green concealer in my palette to hide any redness on my skin. I applied Rimmel London Lasting Finish 25 Hour foundation (I've already done a review of this foundation on my blog) using my Penneys Beauty blender. I used to always apply foundation using my fingers, but since trying out this beauty blender two weeks ago for the purposes of the blog, I am hooked and will never return to using my fingers to apply foundation! The beauty blender gives a much more airbrushed, natural effect. I applied Kubiss light reflecting concealer under my eyes to hide dark circles, and set the foundation and concealer using my Kubiss powder. I contoured my cheekbones very slightly using Benefit Hoola bronzer and applied only a slight amount of Catrice defining blush to the apples of my cheeks. I used Catrice Calligraph Ultra Slim Eyeliner pen to draw an eye line and went back over the line with NYC Liquid Eyeliner. If you have problems like me with applying eyeliner, I would advise you to get an eyeliner felt tip pen, it leaves less of a mess on your face than if you mess up liquid eyeliner! This Catrice one has a very fine applicator for a precise slim eye line, and isn't too expensive, so worth checking out. I applied Benefit They're Real! mascara to my eyelashes and filled in my eyebrows using Penneys Beauty browkit. I highlighted my cheekbones and my eyebrow bone using my Catrice highlighting powder. I applied some Nivea Essential Care lipbalm to my lips and then applied MAC Russian Red lipstick to my lips for a very retro effect. I really like this lipstick, it has a blue-ish tone to it so if you're scared of wearing red lipstick as you think it looks too 'out there', I'd really recommend this one. It's matte, so quite drying, so the step I mentioned previously with the lipbalm is essential. But once on, it stays on all night and is smooch-proof too. As with all expensive products, I am looking for a less expensive alternative to this as well as alternatives to the Benefit bronzer and mascara.

I know I often wear fake tan but I felt like this look is much nicer with the pale Irish skin (red lipstick looks more striking with pale skin as well I feel). And I definitely like to embrace my porcelain skintone (even though it often irritates me from the viewpoint of finding a foundation to match!).



Product Details

Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Foaming Wash, €4.79.
Nivea Daily Essentials Express Hydration Primer, €6.49.
Concealer palette, €10, Chinese wholesale website
Primark Beauty Blender, €1.50, Penneys.
Rimmel London Lasting Finish 25 Hour Nude Foundation in '100 Ivory', €9.99, Penneys.
Kubiss Light Reflecting Concealer in 'No.2 Medium', €2, local chemist.
Kubiss Powder in 'No.2 Candle', €2, local chemist.
Benefit Hoola, €34, Boots.
Catrice Defining Blush in '080 Sunrose Avenue', €4.49, Penneys.
Catrice Calligraph Ultra Slim Eyeliner Pen, €3.49, Penneys.
NYC Liquid Eyeliner, €2.40, Penneys.
Benefit They're Real! mascara, €26, Boots.
Primark Beauty Browkit, €1.50, Penneys.
Catrice Prime and Fine Highlighting powder, €4, Penneys.
Nivea Essential Care Lipbalm, €2.09, Penneys.
MAC Matte Lipstick in 'Russian Red', £15.50 (around €21), maccosmetics.co.uk.




















Friday, 20 March 2015

Beauty - My Skincare Routine

So I mentioned I was going to do a blog post on my skin care routine a few blog posts ago, and here it is! Bear in mind that this routine might not suit everyone's skin. I have the complete misfortune of having both really sensitive skin and unpredictable combination skin, which means my skin could be oily one day and dry the next day (or worse - dry on my cheeks and oily on my forehead), so it's really difficult to find a skincare routine that suits me. This seems to be working quite well at the moment though.

Although I have mentioned quite a few products here that I use frequently, personally I find that no amount of products could ever come close to the benefit my skin gets from exercising regularly (you don't need to go mad in the gym either - a quick 30 minute walk in the fresh air once a day does the job quite well. The exercise is also a great stress relief, which plays a big role in preventing breakouts), cutting down on the amount of alcohol I drink (I'm not saying you have to become a pioneer, I'm just advising to watch how much you drink), cutting out the takeaways and fatty foods except for once a week (life is far too short to be completely depriving yourself of the nice stuff) and drinking plenty of water during the day. It's not easy to stick to I know, but I find it does make a world of difference not only to your skin but your overall health. Often breakouts on the external of the body are mirroring a problem on the inside of the body (e.g. digestion problems, the difficult task in detoxifying alcohol).
It's also worth noting that breakouts are sometimes caused by dirt transferring off your pillowcase onto your face, so make sure you change yours every few days (I'm a bit paranoid about this and change mine every 2 days). Plus if you are putting on moisturiser make sure you wash your hands thoroughly with antibacterial soap wash. Sometimes it's these little things that make the world of difference with your skin, and if you're trying to banish breakouts, you will often see results much quicker using these simple methods rather than if you buy a lot of high end skincare products - that if you're a broke ass college student like I was - you don't have money for anyways. The products I've mentioned here range around the €5 mark anyways.


Regarding taking off my makeup after the day or a night out, the easiest thing for me to do is reach for the makeup wipes. I never ever ever ever ever go to sleep with my makeup on these days. Of course I did in the past, but now I realise it's just not worth it. It just blocks your pores and all the makeup is transferred to your pillowcase too (ugh!). I mentioned Penneys beauty items a good few times in my blog posts so it will come as no surprise when I say the face wipes I have been using for the last two years are their Gentle Facial Cleansing Wipes (in Penneys they are the wipes with the pink packaging). I tried them out because they come in a twin pack of 25 wipes per pack for €1.50. I thought they would be quite crap, but they're surprisingly really good! Like the name suggests, they are super gentle for the face and don't sting at all, like a lot of makeup wipes have done on my face in the past. I know Penneys have other options in wipes available, like with tea-tree oil for breakout prone skin, but I find these work best with myself.



After removing my makeup, I then like to use a toner. The toner I'm using at the moment is Garnier Simply Essentials Soothing Vitamin Enriched Toner. I had been using Simple's toner (which is brilliant, and great for someone with sensitive skin), but a few weeks ago, I ran out of my Simple one and had to use this one which belonged to my sister. I loved it so much that I bought one for myself. Before using toners, I thought they were a gimmick, but if you look at the makeup pad after using this on your face you will see the huge difference! This toner gets rid of any excess makeup, and any excess dirt on your face, so it makes it super clean. The soft feeling you get on your face after using it is really nice too. It's alcohol free, so it doesn't dry out my skin, so often I use this after removing makeup and find I don't even need to moisturise (I still do though!). Best of all, it doesn't sting my face, so it's perfect for someone with sensitive skin like myself. It costs €4.49 in Boots.



The cleanser I've mentioned in other blog posts I use  is Boots Tea Tree and Witch Hazel Foaming Face Wash. I've been using this for about three years now. There was a 3 for the price of 2 offer on in Boots on these products at the time (there often still is now) and I got this, the blemish stick and the night cream. The blemish stick didn't seem to do much for my skin and the night cream was hit and miss whenever my skin took the whim to be oily. But I found the wash to be quite good so  have continued to buy it every few weeks since then.
Tea tree oil, as many of you are aware of, is an antibacterial disinfectant and unlike other acne treatments, will not strip your skin of it's natural oils and cause further damage. Before I tried this, I was afraid of using tea tree oil as I had used it before and it caused a reaction with my sensitive skin. However, combined with soothing witch hazel in this wash, it works quite well. A bottle of this would last me about two months. I'd typically use this in the morning and then again in the evening before I put on makeup for nights out to completely wash my face. It's very light and kind to sensitive skin, so it doesn't sting whatsoever. This will get rid of light breakouts, but I have frequent reoccurring stubborn breakouts on my chin that this won't get rid of though.  It's €4.79 in Boots.



Another product I recently bought, and immediately fell in love with, has been the Clean & Clear Deep Action Cream wash. I got it because like I mentioned above, I'm very prone to stubborn reoccurring breakouts on my chin, and this range of products has got good reviews so I wanted to give it a try (the Boots one above just wasn't doing the job). It doesn't sting whatsoever, and after you wash it off, you get a very refreshing sensation on your face, which I really liked. It got rid of the breakouts I was experiencing within a few days of usage as well, so for that reason I couldn't recommend it enough, and is oil free too, another bonus. I'd only use this when trying to get rid of breakouts, it wouldn't be a wash I'd use every day. It costs €3.49 in Boots.




Regarding a moisturiser, I use a light moisturiser in the day time and if my skin is in good condition, usually under makeup as well, and then at night I obviously use a nightcream. The light moisturiser I have been using for the past five years is Simple Kind to Skin Hydrating Light moisturiser. I got it - plus other Simple products -  when I suffered from stress breakouts in my Leaving Cert (final) year at school. It was then my love for this Simple skincare range began, and has continued! I have so much love for the range I could probably rattle on about their products for a week! These products are so good if you have sensitive skin like mé féin - no artificial perfume, no colour or no harsh chemicals, so it really won't upset your skin. It contains vitamins - pro Vitamin B5 and Vitamin E - as well as glycerin and borage seed oil.
To explain some of these so you know exactly what's going onto your face: Pro Vitamin B5 acts as a skin moisturiser, helping to keep skin smooth, soft and healthy. It also acts as an anti-inflammatory by stimulating your skin's natural healing process. It is deeply hydrating and even helps to keep skin moist by absorbing moisture from the air.
As an anti-oxidant, Vitamin E helps to protect skin from damage from free-radicals (in really really simple terms these are by products caused by the oxygen we breathe). In small quantities they are OK but they can cause premature aging, hence where this baby comes in to counteract this.
Glycerin as a compound helps absorb water from the air and increases hydration within skin cells.
Borage seed oil contains high levels of essential fatty acids, which are part of the skin's natural moisturisation process helping to keep skin soft and supple.
But to get down to the basic stuff! It's super hygienic as it comes with a cap that contains just a small hole - there's no putting your fingers in a pot and worry that you're going to transfer dirt to your face or contaminate it. It's oil free, so no horrible oil residue is left. It is absorbed into the skin super quickly too, so you can get started on your makeup base just five minutes after application. It acts as the perfect under base - keeps any sort of makeup I have going for the whole day and the whole night. I use it as a daily moisturiser even when I have no makeup on after cleansing and my skin is super soft the whole day. Can literally not recommend this stuff enough! It costs €5 in Boots. When I was drafting this blogpost 2 weeks ago, it was out of stock on boots.ie - no wonder! It's the UK's No.1 beauty brand for a reason!


The night cream I use is Cien Anti-Wrinkle night cream. Cien is actually Lidl's own beauty brand. I know what you're thinking - surely she doesn't need anti-wrinkle cream at 22?! - but I firmly believe caring for your skin and body when you're young is one way to get into a good routine as you become older and good skin in your youth becomes good skin in your older age. The Q10 you can see on the label is short for the co-enzyme 10, and like Vitamin E that I've mentioned above, is a anti-oxidant. It helps fight off free radicals therefore counteracting premature aging. Overtime, the body starts to produce less and less of this co-enzyme 10 due to aging, stress and medications. Therefore, it stands to reason that it is in most - if not all - anti-wrinkle creams.
 This stuff smells absolutely gorgeous. It's quite heavy so a little goes a long way (I've had this a few months), and when I wake up in the morning my face feels so so soft. Obviously, as I've ranted about other products that have this - the only thing I dislike is that it comes in a pot so you have to put your fingers in it, therefore risking contamination of bacteria in the pot to your face. But for the price (around €3), I think it's worth trying out. Over the coming weeks I will be doing a full blog post on other Lidl own brand beauty products.



If I have a lot of eye-make up on after a night out or a day out, I use Garnier Express 2 in 1 Eye Makeup Remover. I bought this for my college graduation in October as I wanted something to gently remove the individual eyelashes and the strong smoky eye look at the end of the night. If you shake the bottle, you will see that it looks oily, but it doesn't feel very greasy, and the beauty is of it that you only have to use a little of it to have an effect, so the 125ml bottle would last you at least three months. You put a few drops on a cotton pad and put it to your eyelid while the makeup quickly dissolves, then gently wipe it off, so no rubbing is needed. I find though that if you use it around a sensitive part of your eye that it does sting quite a bit, but I put up with that personally because it's the only thing I find that will remove waterproof mascara from my eyelashes or a waterproof gel eyeliner from my eyelid super quickly. It also contains arginine, which helps care for your eyelashes by coating them in a protective layer so as not to damage them in the eye makeup removal process. It's ophthalmologically tested too, which means if it gets into your eye it won't blind ya! It's €4.29 in Penneys.



Regarding facemasks, I have been using two the past six months.

I bought the Neutrogena Visibly Clear 2-1 Wash & Mask about three months ago because the brand is quite reputable and supposed to be good quality. It was also a good price for €5.49 in Boots. You can use this as either a wash or a mask. It didn't a great job reducing or removing any breakouts I had as a wash, so I decided to try it as a mask. I applied it in a thin layer to my face. Within a minute, it started stinging so violently that it made my eyes water and my nose runny. I persevered and left it on for the five minutes recommended. The stinging only stopped when I washed it off with warm water. My skin did feel super smooth after it and even the next day after but I don't think it was worth it for the horrible stinging sensation I experienced on my face, so stopped using it and haven't used it since then. I definitely wouldn't advise it for someone with sensitive skin.





The face mask I use once a week nowadays is Montagne Jennesse Very Berry. You can buy this sachet in Dunnes or Tesco or Penneys. I bought it in Penneys for €1.35. The sachet comes perforated at the top, so there's no scouring the house for a scissors like I had to do with the hair mask I reviewed in the blog a few weeks ago.  I cleanse my face first with the Boots Foaming Wash before applying this. The formula is bright purple in colour as it contains pressed blueberries and crushed cranberries, which both contain antioxidants - the role of which I've mentioned above. I applied it in a thin layer (there's still loads always left after I apply), and leave it on for 10-15 minutes. It stings slightly for about a minute but then it calms down. Then you wash it off. It contains peach kernel oil which nourishes and aloe vera which soothes. I love this range of skincare masks as it's completely natural. The ingredients are all written in basic language as well, for example it says it contains aqua then has in brackets that it's purified water, so you know exactly what you're putting on your face. This company doesn't test on animals either - the packet actually says that they "don't bash bunnies or add bits of animals"! - so you can rest assured you're using an ethically produced product.



Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Lifestyle - Book Review: The Storyteller, Jodi Picoult

I'll admit that while I like beautifying myself and experimenting with hair, makeup and clothes, I wouldn't describe myself as being the most girly girl there is. There's many dimensions to me that make up my personality - reading books, listening to music, exercising, travelling - and I feel like these interests should be reflected in the blog. From here on out, I'd describe myself as being more of a 'lifestyle blogger who writes about topics of importance', rather than solely a 'bargain makeup, beauty and fashion blogger'. I also wanted to make my blog a bit more broad and more accessible to men. I will be doing book reviews, travel reviews, sharing some photographs of mine, and my opinion on current affair news both in Ireland and internationally.

To start off, I'll do a very brief book review on  the most recently book I've read. I don't have a price for it as I borrowed it from the local library.

It's called The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult. I've read lots of her books, and she's my favourite author by far, as she writes about controversial topics like rape and suicide but she writes about it in such an interesting way that that enables the reader to really get into the minds of the characters involved. It really gets you thinking what you would do in the situation, so it really isn't one of them mindless Fifty Shades of Shite books - you actually use your brain reading these books. As always with a Jodi Picoult book, I buy it planning to pace myself - I start reading the book in the evening time and say I'll only read for an hour or two. However, it gets me sucked in! This book was no different. I started reading it at 11pm and was up till 3am in the morning reading it from start to finish.

This book is about the Holocaust. I chose it because I have an interest in European history and was curious to know how this author would put her spin on it.

The story is told in sections by different characters. First up, we go into the mind of the character Sage  who sets the scene. She runs a bereavement support group in her local town. It's attended by different people, all connected by the same thing - the loss of a loved one. She herself attends the support group and harbors an immense guilt ever since she had a car accident while driving that killed her mother. She doesn't quite fit in with her family, so she spends most of her spare time away from the support group in her small café, where she works as a baker. She doesn't feel herself to be worthy of a fulfilled relationship, which is why she has for years been having an affair with a married man that has children.

While she is working in the café, she a man who has lived in the local community for over seventy years and is very well respected - Josef Weber - comes into the café with his small dog. He begins talking to Sage and at first, she responds because she feels sympathy on the lonely man, but the two soon become great friends. He confides in her that he needs support overcoming a difficult period in his past and Sage encourages him to join the bereavement support group. Over time, he begins to confess horrific things about his past to Sage that changes the way she thinks about him - that he is not the pillar of the local community. He explains to her that he was a Nazi who played a massive role in the massacre of millions in the concentration camps, and claims to have changed his name to Josef from Reiner Hartmann when he moved to the US after the war ended. As she is a Jew herself, she is understandably horrified, and gets in contact with Leo, head of an organisation who hunts out Nazis in the US, to see is it true. 'Josef' asks Sage to assist him in suicide, and she is considering it.

Sage is quite close to her grandmother, Minka. She has noticed Minka has a 'tattoo' on her arm but whenever she quizzes the old lady about it, she closes up and refuses to talk about it. With Leo's guidence, Minka opens up to Sage and admits that she was a Jew in a concentration camp - the same one Reiner was in. She mentions that Reiner was the soldier that murdered her best friend. She also says there was another, kind hearted soildier, who was the reason she ended up surviving the concentration camps.

Sage, consumed with inexpressible rage, agrees to assist Reiner to end his life. It is only after that he has died, that Sage finds out that all is not as it seems and what 'Reiner' admitted to her was quite possibly down to survivor's guilt. I won't spoil the story for you though!

The story is obviously quite dark and somber for the most part, and Minka's description of life in a Nazi concentration camp at times brought me to tears - it's really difficult for me to understand that evil did exist - and unfortunately does exist - in the world. Despite all that, there is some nice parts of the book - the closeness between Sage and her grandmother Minka is quite touching and through helping Minka speak about her horrific experiences, Sage finds a strength in herself that she never knew she had to change her life.

Overall, I would really recommend this book. I found it to be a very humane, warts-and-all insight into the past horrors of war - the passages described by Minka are all developed from real life stories of both concentration camp survivors and victims, so you really do get a first hand account of what really did happen. Like I mentioned, you really think 'what would I do in the situation' as the reader also is brought through Sage's mind as she battles with her moral dilemmas.



Sunday, 15 March 2015

Beauty - Ten Products Under €10

I've been using a lot of cheap beauty products recently on both the looks I've tried out for the blog and in daily life, but I am aware some of you may doubt the quality of these products because they are so cheap. To be honest, I would have thought the same before I tried and tested these products out! Granted, there are some that are not great, but many of them are great quality products that I will continue buying, and that is not just me being frugal - if a product is good quality but expensive I will buy it too. I've decided to do a quick review of ten products I have in my make-up bag that are under €10, from first impressions to staying power. I hope to do another ten products under €10 over the coming weeks, this is just to get started. These are in no particular ranking either.


1. Boots Seventeen Define and Conquer Kit, €7.59.

All the talk about Kim Kardashian's chiseled cheekbones created by contouring, as well as every beauty YouTuber I ever laid eyes on being on about it, led me to seeking out a contouring palette.
The price was obviously the first thing that appealed to me about this kit. The kit is made up of a dark bronzing powder on one side and a highlighter powder on the other, making the job of contouring easy. It comes with a mirror too, a nice added bonus. The kit even comes with instructions on where you should apply both powders. I first tried this out for a night out over the Christmas season. It looked fairly obvious where I had applied the contour when it was put on my face first. But within two hours, the contour had faded. I've hardly noticed it on the first blog post that I used it in. I used a flash on my camera on a photo I obviously didn't put up on the blog and couldn't even see where the contour was. The highlighting powder was virtually non existant on my face, even from the initial application. I think this contour kit is best for someone that just wants a slight, extremely subtle contour (and that's perfectly fine!), maybe a beginner, as it does seem to be targeted that way, especially with the handy instruction sheet. You definitely won't get Kim K's obvious contour with this one! I like the contour to look slightly more obvious, so for that reason, personally I didn't like this. I haven't used this kit since and contour my face using a matte bronzer and a highlighting powder. The matte bronzer I use at the moment is Benefit Hoola (looking for a cheaper alternative though) and the highlighter powder I use is Catrice Highlighting Powder.

2. Catrice Absolute Nude Eyeshadow Palette, €5.49 (Penneys).
I had read reviews about this eyeshadow palette online that raved it was a good quality affordable dupe for the Urban Decay Naked palettes. And as I'd rather pay a fiver than thirty euro, I said I'd give it a go!
This palette contains six different eyeshadow shades, ranging from a light shimmery champagne tone to a dark brown. The lighter shadows (on the left of the palette), are shimmery while the shadows on the right are more matte. The back of the palette contains the simplest of instructions that even a child could follow to create a perfect smoky eye. The palette comes with a double sided brush for easier application.
What I love about this palette is that the eyeshadows are super easy to apply and even easier to blend out. I've used them both for a day time look and a night time look, using both the shadows to the right and the left. It claims to be long lasting, and they really are! They last the whole day and night for me. Well worth a try.


3. Essence Quattro Eyeshadow in 09 'Denim 4.0', €3.49 ( Penneys).
I did a blog post using this very eyeshadow palette a few weeks ago. Like I mentioned in the post, I bought it a few months ago (don't panic about expiry dates, the expiry date is actually very long on this - 36 months! - I don't know if it is the same with other products in this brand, to be honest, this isn't a brand I use very much nowadays). As I also said in the post, I just thought blue smoky eyes were best left in the 90s or early 2000's but then I thought, maybe I just didn't know how to use it properly. So after watching a couple of YouTube videos (I'm not an expert by any means, nor have I said I was!), I took it out of it's hibernation and used it.
First impressions when I was using the silver eyeshadow was that it wasn't great quality - I felt like you had to use loads of product to get even a hint of colour on the eyelid, but as I used the bright blue eyeshadow, I felt it improved - much better quality. The dark navy shadow I placed on the outer V of my eye was also very strong pigmented. The glitter really dark navy eyeshadow scattered down my cheeks and all over my face when I applied it, which was why I was thankful I hadn't done my foundation then - it would have been ruined!
I find this eyeshadow palette is quite bland on it's own - for a night time look it needs to be helped along and jazzed up by the liquid and kohl eyeliners which I did do. Regarding staying power, it does last a few hours but it starts to fade quite quickly (you would need to re-do it if going for a day to night look).
It's worth trying out for the price as it doesn't break the bank but I wouldn't buy this product regulary. I  think this brand in general is quite cheap and ineffective makeup.

4. Nivea Essential Care Lipbalm, €2.09 (Penneys).
As this was a good and trusted brand, I obviously had high expectations for this cheap but cheerful lipbalm. And it did not disappoint! As my lips have been cracked and slightly dry (from the horrible Irish cold weather, not from any action :P), I have been using this before applying lipstick or lipgloss. It softens the lips within minutes so you will notice a difference if you apply this about 10 minutes before applying lipgloss. The smell and taste is super nice on your lips. A great buy for protecting your lips from this cold weather.

5. Catrice Defining Blush in 080 'Sunrose Avenue', €4.49 (Penneys).
The price was the first thing that attracted me to trying out this product. It's super small, so it will fit in even the smallest of handbags. It is super soft to apply. You only need a tiny bit of it to be nice on your skin, so be warned - I messed up this a few times initially by applying too much, so I looked like I had been running for miles - you want a look that makes you look subtly fresh faced. Therefore, this blusher will last a long time (doesn't reach it's expiry date until 12 months from purchase). It's dermatologically tested too, so it won't irritate sensitive skin peeps like myself, and there's no strong smell off it either. It's oil free too, so great for combination or oily skin. Give it a try!

6. Nivea Daily Essentials Express Hydration Primer, €6.49 (Penneys).
I recently decided to give a primer a go after hearing so much about the importance of primers in applying your makeup. I chose this Nivea one as it was affordable and from a reputable brand. It smells absolutely gorgeous, and as the name suggests, it does soak into your skin super quickly, leaving absolutely no oil residue. It did help my foundation stay put all night, but to be honest, I didn't find it that better than my Simple moisturiser I always use. I didn't like the fact that it came in a pot too, so you do need to stick your fingers in it - slightly unhygenic! Personally myself (and I know many people feel the same way), I would just prefer a moisturiser with a  cap on it just to prevent any dirt going into it and therefore transferring to your face.

7.  Catrice Kohl Kajal Eyeliner Pencil in 010 'Ultra Black', €2.29 (Penneys).
This has been a favourite of mine for the past year. After buying (and hating) Benefit Bad Gal kohl pencil (it is a huge pencil, making application difficult, and kept wiping off my waterline within minutes - not impressed!), and not really feeling any of Rimmel's, and being a bit too broke for all the others (blame college life!), I decided to give this one a try, the price being the main reason I picked it up - at just over €2 I figured I hadn't much to lose. It has a super easy, smooth application. It's easy to smudge, so it's perfect for adding some dramatics to a smoky eye look. I've used this both for day time looks and for night time looks over the past year, so I can definitely say that it's been well tried and tested (and even slept in the odd time!) and it honestly does last for hours. Give it a try!

8.  NYC Liquid Eyeliner, €2.40 (Penneys).

I never had much faith in the NYC brand, because past experience with their foundation was not so good - I couldn't find a shade to match my pale skin tone exactly, it left my skin super patchy and dry and also caused breakouts. However, when the Irish fashion and beauty blogger Suzanne Jackson (So Sue Me) reviewed her top 5 eyeliners on her blog and this was one of them, I had to give it a try - sure for €2.40 I had to! I'm really glad I did. I really really really love this eyeliner. It has a bigger brush than most liquid eyeliners do for nicer and smoother application, and doesn't sting my eyelid like many others have done, so it's great for somebody with sensitive skin. Best of all, it stays on all night - I have evidence of drunken selfies on my phone taken at 4am and the eyeliner is still looking as good then as it did when I applied it at 6pm (those selfies will not see the light of day on the internet though - a bit cringe!). A great buy, one of my favourite makeup products at the moment.

9. Kubiss London powder in No.2 'Candle', €2. (local chemist).
The price attracted me to this matte powder, I decided for that price it was worth a shot. First impressions - it smells old fashioned, reminds me of a perfume my granny used to wear or talcum powder, and it's quite strongly scented like this too, so if you're not into strong scents on a powder or just feel wary of them because of sensitive skin, stay well clear - although I have sensitive skin and this powder didn't affect my skin whatsoever. I find that this powder is really good for initial setting down of foundation, but for nights out or even a day time look, it does need to be re-applied, as it does lose it's magic after 2 hours or even less. But I didn't mind that (sometimes!). I also feel like you need to apply lots to your skin to get it to work, but then it makes your base look off colour.  This is a nice affordable powder if you don't mind the frequent added touch ups. Kubiss is a relatively unknown brand from the UK, I bought it in my local chemist in Mayo because they had an offer on on the brand there - three makeup products for €4 - so being the bargain-hunter I am, I just had to give it a go. I also spotted it in a chemist in Sligo too a few months back. I recently bought their light reflecting concealer and matte foundation that I will be reviewing on the next Ten Products Under €10. You can browse their products on their website - www.kubiss.co.uk.

10. Catrice Infinite Shine Lipgloss, €3.49 (Penneys).
The price again was the thing that attracted me to this product. I have alot of Catrice products, it probably sounds like I'm a rep for them at times, but  I really like their products, so was eager to try out their lipgloss. I first tried it out a few weeks ago. It smells and tastes absolutely gorgeous - like marshmallows - so that was a major plus for me as I hate lipsticks and lipglosses that taste so gross on my lips. It's non sticky, so it won't get stuck in your hair while you brave the windy weather (it has been tried and tested numerous times!). It doesn't have amazing lasting power so you will need to re-apply it a few times during the day and a night out - for a night out from 8pm-4am I'd typically have to reapply this about 4 times, which still isn't that bad. It keeps your lips super moisturised and soft as well. I often use it over a nude lipstick like I did in the blogpost with the smoky eye look to give it added shine. It's definitely worth trying out.


That's all for now lovelies,
until next time,

Michelle xoxox

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Beauty - Review of Rimmel London Lasting Finish 25 Hour Nude Foundation

From reviews I had read online, this Rimmel foundation fared pretty well, so despite my previous dissatisfaction with this brand's foundations (I personally felt like they didn't cover my skin very well and started to wear away quickly on my combination skin), I decided to give this one a try as it promises to last for a whole 25 hours (don't know who would be awake that length, but sure!). It was priced at €9.99 in Penneys too, so I said why not. My shade is 100 Ivory, in case you can't see it clearly in the photo - I think this is the lightest shade in the range.

On the day I decided to review this product, I was going into my local town to do some shopping. After cleansing my face with Boots Tea Tree Oil & Witch Hazel Foaming Face Wash (€4.79) to get rid of any oil and dirt that may have built up over night and also to clean off the excess of my night face cream, and moisturising in 3 thin layers with Simple Kind to Skin Hydrating Light Moisturiser (€4.99, Penneys) in order to give it the best base in which to cling to, I put this foundation on at about 2pm. I set it with only a light dusting of powder to really investigate the foundation's staying power. I was going for quite a casual, natural look that day so I applied a little bit of NYC Volume by the Lash Mascara (€3.49, Penneys) to my upper eyelashes only and lightly filled in my eyebrows using my PS Beauty Browkit (€1.50, Penneys). I applied just a tiny bit of Vaseline to my lips.

I had used this foundation before, for my first ever blog post (the gel eyeliner and pink lips look - Check. It. Out!), but for some reason I had only worn it then for about 3 hours, then wiped it off, which although showing me it achieved a natural look, didn't give any insight into how well it lasted.

First impression - it smelled quite nice, like most Rimmel foundations do. The packaging is quite basic though like a lot of other Rimmel foundations - a glass container with only a white top.

I found however, that it doesn't cover any spots at all. I know concealer is really supposed to cover the spots, but a lot of my other foundations (like Catrice and Maxfactor), do cover spots a little. This one scooted by the spots, which means the really obvious breakout I'm currently experiencing on my chin remained obvious as ever after application. I took pictures of the initial application then, both with and without flash, and without an Instagram filter (scary shit!), as you can see from the screenshot. First reaction was that it was quite natural and looked like I was wearing no makeup, which was the desired look. My sister commented that I had a 'healthy glow'.




















Coming back from town, 3 hours later, I took more photos, both with and without the flash, and without an Instagram filter. I don't touch my face at all during the day, because I'm a little paranoid about transferring germs to it, but noticed that the foundation had already started to fade around my nose and even moreso around my chin. My forehead had already started to become oily too!























For the purposes of research, I decided to keep this foundation on while I went for a run. I never ever ever  wear makeup while exercising, because it blocks your pores when you sweat, therefore causing breakouts, but I wanted to test this foundation to the maximum, exposing it to the cold Irish weather.

Two hours after the run, and 8 hours after application, with zero touch ups, I took more photos, both with and without the flash, and again without an Instagram filter. To give this makeup some credit, I found that in certain areas, it had lasted well, but it had started to wear away even more at the cheeks. So much so that my sister had even asked did I take off my foundation yet! Lasting Finish - yeah right!



















It sounds like I'm dwelling on the bad points of this, but this isn't a bad foundation though - if you are on the hunt for a natural-looking, medium coverage (for normal skin anyways!) foundation that is affordable too, then this is your guy. I'd recommend it for someone going for an interview who doesn't want to look too done up, or someone going to school that wants to wear makeup but doesn't want it to look like they are (if that makes sense?). I might even use this myself again if I'm going for an interview or I want the natural make-up look (provided I top it up every few hours!). It also contains SPF 20. But overall, for me personally, this just didn't work - I prefer a foundation with a bit more heavier coverage that doesn't wear away after just a few hours with my combination skin.


Sunday, 8 March 2015

Beauty & Fashion - Valentines' Night Look

Decided to do a blog post about some of the outfits combined with makeup looks I have worn the past year.

One of my favourite looks on myself over the past year has been my Valentines' night outfit - I love wearing red lipstick so much. Better still - besides from the dress - every product used costs €10 or less - bargain! :)

The dress - if anyone is wondering - is from Swamp. I remember seeing it when it was in store first, but when I saw the price tag - €65 - it became less appealing! Just by chance I happened to be in the shop when they were having their after Christmas sales and I snapped it up for €20! Best.Bargain.Ever! I love this dress as it has a very classic neckline  and it also has a nice knee-length to it. It also has a tie belt so you can adjust it around the waist, to draw attention to your waist. I had worn it out New Year's Eve but decided to wear it Valentines' Night as it seemed appropriate to wear red that weekend!

Like most girls, when I go on a night out I like to wear a little bit (I emphasise the little bit!) of fake tan. I use Cocoa Brown Tough Stuff Body Scrub in the shower to exfoliate tough areas of skin like the hands, feet, elbows and knees, to avoid that manky orange tell-tale sign. I love this exfoliator as it smells really nice and is super effective too. I did this the night before I was going out, and moisturised my skin using the Supreme Cream Body Butter by Dirty works - it contains shea butter and sweet almond oil and as well as making even the roughest of skin super soft, it smells pretty good too, as well as being  super affordable! I forget what was the price of this was when I bought it six months ago, and after all my research,  I have been only able to find it online from a retailer in the UK (www.mysupermarket.co.uk), that sells it for a very purse-friendly £4 (€5.55). I applied a light layer of Cocoa Brown Day & Night Tan Mousse then. I like this tan as it doesn't have the horrible biscuit-tin smell that most have. I haven't used it too much though, so I'm going to do a blog post in the future reviewing both Tough Stuff and Day & Night tan in full.

For the makeup look, I thought that the red lipstick would suit the look and kind of tie it in together. With that in mind, I decided to keep the rest of my makeup super simple and matte. So after cleansing my face with my Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Foaming Face Wash to get rid of any dirt or oil that might have built up on my face throughout the day (I will be doing a blogpost about affordable skin care products soon), I primed my skin using my trusty Simple Kind to Skin Hydraing Light Moisturiser.  For my makeup base, I decided to mix two foundations together - apart from the godsend gem Max Factor Skin Luminizer foundation I have recently used - I really struggle to find a foundation that is light enough to match my Casper the ghost-esque skintone. I had been using Catrice All Matt Plus which is a great foundation for a while, but I made the mistake of buying it in a shade slightly too dark for my skin tone (Nude Beige) so when I bought Catrice Nude Illusion in a slightly lighter shade (Rose Vanilla) I stopped using All Matt Plus, but I have noticed that Nude Illusion tends to wipe off within a really short space of time and as I wanted my make up to be matte and stay put all night, I needed some input from All Matt Plus as well. I found these both together did the job pretty well! Of course, I was just using what I had handy at the time, but you can obviously just use a mattifying, long-lasting foundation in a shade that suits your skin tone. I set my foundation using Kubiss London powder. For blusher, I used Catrice Defining Blush. I filled in my eyebrows using Penneys PS Beauty Browkit. For eyes, I used Catrice Absolute Nude Eyeshadow Palette and the three shades on the left side to create a subtle smoky eye. I applied the second shade from the left all over my eye right up to my browbone. I then added the third shade from the left in the eye crease and created an outer V at the outer eye corner. I then blended these both together. I then used the champagne toned colour (the first on the left) on the inner corner of the eye to highlight and brighten the look up. For added drama, I added a pair of false eyelashes from Penneys. They were a bit long for my small eyes so I had to cut a little off at the ends. To hide the band, I applied some NYC Liquid Eyeliner over the top, and added lots of NYC Big Bold Volume By the Lash Mascara to blend the false eyelashes in with my real ones. I used Catrice Prime and Fine Highlighting powder over the cheeks, on my chin and on my browbone. For red lipstick, I used a favourite of mine - Catrice Ultimate Shine Lipstick in 130 'Ketch-me-up'.  It's super glossy, easy to apply, an affordable price and makes my teeth look really white, and I use it every week if I can (hence the mess of the label on my photo
below!). Plus how eye-catching is that pretty silver packaging? Definitely makes this lipstick easy to find in my makeup bag in between the black packaging of the Mac and Rimmel ones! The only thing I dislike about this lipstick is that it fades away within two hours so if you're going for a night out, make sure you stick it in your handbag so you can touch it up as the night goes on. so the colour stays super glossy like it does from first application.





























Product Details



Cocoa Brown Tough Stuff 3-in-1 Body Scrub, €7.99, Penneys.
Cocoa Brown Day & Night Tan Mousse, €9.99, Penneys.
Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Foaming Face Wash, €4.79, Boots.
Simple Kind to Skin Hydrating Light Moisturiser, €4.99, Boots.
Catrice All Matt Plus Shine Control Makeup in 'Nude Beige', €6.99, Penneys.
Catrice Nude Illusion Makeup in 'Rose Vanilla', €8.49, Penneys.
Kubiss London powder in No.2 'Candle', €2, local chemist.
PS Beauty Browkit, €1.50, Penneys.
NYC Liquid Eyeliner, €2.40, Penneys. 
Catrice Absolute Nude Eyeshadow Palette, €5.49, Penneys.
Catrice Prime and Fine Highlighting Powder, €4, Penneys.
Catrice Defining Blush in 080 'Sunrose Avenue', €4.49, Penneys.
NYC Big Bold Volume by the Lash Mascara, €3.49, Penneys.
PS Beauty False Eyelashes in 'Sultry', €1.50, Penneys.
Catrice Ultimate Shine Lipstick in 130 'Ketch-me-up', €5.49, Penneys.










Thursday, 5 March 2015

Beauty - Blue Smokey Eye and Nude Lips Makeup

So I've had this Essence Quattro Eye shadow in 09 'Denim 4.0' for a few months now but I thought blue smokey eyes were a bit too 90's so I left it to the back of my makeup bag, where it remained - until now! Honestly love this look right now. It's a really dramatic look for a night out really - or a day out, whatever you're into! - that looks super glam teamed with black liquid eyeliner and some false lashes! :)
So I started off by priming my skin with my Nivea Daily essentials express hydration primer. I did my eyes before my base. I just prefer it that way it's easier and I've had too many unfortunate incidents with messing up liquid eyeliner (my hands are really as shaky like an old woman) and therefore messing up my lovely base to risk it anymore. I used the light concealer in my concealer palette to get act as a primer for my eye shadow and also to hide any discolouration on my eyes. Using the silver eye shadow in the Essence kit, I applied it all over my eye right up to my brow bone. I then got the bright blue eye shadow and applied that from the base of my eyelashes to the mid section of my eyes. I applied the navy eye shadow to the outer 'V' of my eye and smudged it slightly. I blended the 3 eyeshadows together gently to get rid of any harsh lines. With the dark navy glittery eye shadow I applied that on the lash line. I applied NYC black liquid eyeliner on both eyes giving a slight flick at the outer corner. I used lashings of Catrice Kohl eyeliner on my waterline and smudged it in slightly for that grungy feel. I applied Benefit They're Real! Mascara to my upper and lower lashes. You could apply false eyelashes to this look but I think this mascara is just as good! Onto my base! I used green concealer in the concealer palette to get rid of any redness. Foundation I used was Maxfactor Skin Luminizer foundation in 40 'Light Ivory'. First time using that foundation and I love it so much, definitely is one of my favourite foundations to use at the moment. I set this with Kubiss London face powder in No.2 'Candle'. I applied Benefit Hoola bronzer lightly on areas that the sun would naturally hit my face (not very believable I know in Ireland but sure) and used Catrice Defining Blush in 080 'Sunrose Avenue'. I used Catrice Prime and Fine highlighting powder to highlight (duh!). I used Penney's PS Beauty browkit to fill in my eyebrows. I applied some Nivea lip balm to soften my lips before applying NYC Lip Colour in 439 'Love my Latte'. It's a nice subtle colour that won't clash with the dramatic eyes. I added Catrice Infinite Shine lip gloss over the lipstick for added shine.

Regarding the quality of these products, this was my first time ever using this Essence palette so I haven't a clue what it's like for staying all night, so I'll have to test that out shortly. But I think the pigment is quite good when you take into consideration the cheap price of it. I will be doing a blog post reviewing a few of the items that are quite cheap that I've used recently, as I think a lot of people are doubting the quality of them as they are so cheap.

As for the high end make up products, I was advised to try Benefit Hoola as I really struggle to find a bronzer that looks (somewhat!) natural on my fair Irish skin. I will admit that while it is a really really good bronzer, it is more than a bit on the expensive side, so I am in the process of trying out some more affordable options at the moment.

Likewise with the Benefit They're Real! mascara. I had heard great reviews about it so personally just wanted to try it out for myself. I think it is a really good mascara, probably one of the best I've ever tried, but again it's expensive. I'm on the hunt for a mascara that's as good as this product.

Apologies, the picture quality ain't that great and those who are wondering - I need to use Snapchat as it has a slight flash on the front camera! :)




                                                           Product Details

Max Factor Skin Luminizer foundation in 40 'Light Ivory'. €15.99, Boots.
Concealer Palette. €10, Chinese wholesale website.
Essence Quattro Eyeshadow Palette in 09 'Denim 4.0', €3.49, Penneys.
Benefit Hoola Bronzer, €34,Boots.
PS Beauty Browkit, €1.50, Penneys.
Kubiss London powder in No.2 'Candle', €2, local chemist.
Nivea Daily Essentials Express Hydration Primer. €6.49, Penneys.
Catrice Prime and Fine Highlighting Powder, €4, Penneys.
Catrice Defining Blush in 080 'Sunrose Avenue. €4.49, Penneys.
Benefit They're Real! Mascara. €26, Boots.
NYC Liquid Eyeliner, €2.40, Penneys.
Catrice Kohl Kajal Eyeliner Pencil, €2.29, Penneys.
Catrice Infinite Shine Lipgloss, €3.49, Penneys.
Nivea Essential Care Lipbalm, €2.09, Penneys.
NYC Lip colour in 439 'Love my Latte', €2.49, Penneys.




Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Beauty - Review Of Lovea Nature Hair Mask

So my hair has been feeling so dry lately. I have been bleaching the ends of my hair blonde since September and that, combined with my addiction to using the GHD everyday, has played havoc on my hair. I knew I needed to try out a hair mask, so that's what I did!
The Lovea Nature Hair Mask stood out to me in Penneys - mostly because of it's cheap price - at €1.90 sure where would ya go wrong! - but it also contains shea butter specially formulated for dry hair.
So after showering and shampooing my hair, I took the plunge and decided to try it out. Firstly, you need a scissors handy - unlike alot of other hair and skin care masks I've used, you just can't open this one with just your fingers (or maybe I have really weak girly fingers?). The formula is a bright yellow colour, almost off putting until you smell the stuff. Absolutely gorgeous! So I began putting it on my hair, and with two handful I realised I had most of my hair covered, but there was more left. So that was definitely a drawback to this mask. Because there was no way I could use it another day. The formula was quite thick and a little sticky, so make sure you have a towel on to wipe your hands after you finish applying it to your hair. The instructions on the pack advised to leave on the mask for only 5 minutes, but because my hair is really lifeless and extremely dry I left it on for a whole hour and a half, then I washed it out with warm water and also rinsed it with ice cold water to give it a glossy shine as well.
I let my hair dry naturally. My thoughts on this are really positive! My hair is super soft, and even though looking at the pictures it's obvious my hair needs a good trim at the ends, I really like it. And the smell is so beautiful. Definitely worth picking up as it definitely packs a punch for only €1.90!  As you can see from the packaging, another plus of this product is that it contains ingredients that are of 95% natural origins so no nasty chemicals will be getting in your gruaig ! (Btw, 'scuse the extremely ugly no make up selfie of me, and the au natural hair! It was all in the aid of research to show you exactly what my hair looked like after applying the mask).

EDIT: A query from an American follower on my Instagram (kissandmakeupnow_blog) led me to researching where else this product is available for purchase, and lo and behold, I found it online at www.mypure.co.uk, in a 300ml tub, which means you can use a bit and save some for the next day, which I complained I couldn't do with this small sachet. Stick Lovea Burkina Shea Moisturising Hair Mask in the search bar and it should come up. It costs  €9.90 for the tub, and delivery to Ireland costs €6.84. 



Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Beauty - Dramatic Eyeliner and Pink Lips Makeup Inspired by Shaaanxo


Kind of a quirky look I went for today!
I had just bought the Rimmel London foundation Lasting Finish in 100 'Ivory' so wanted really to try that out (full review on this product is to come!)
Firstly, I used Nivea Daily Essentials Express Hydration Primer to prime my skin. I've been using this primer for a few weeks and to be honest I'm a little disappointed! It's not that much better than my ordinary Simple moisturiser I had been using in the past, but I like the smell of this and it's very gentle on my skin.
I used the green in my concealer palette to hide any redness caused by the horrible cold Irish weather around my nose and on my cheeks, and used the light pink concealer under my eyes to get rid of any dark circles.
I used the Rimmel London foundation then - first impressions were that it matched my skintone exactly and was a buildable coverage. I used the concealer in the palette to conceal any spots then. I set my foundation using the Kubiss London powder in No.2 'Candle'.
I used Boots Seventeen Define and Conquer Contour Kit primarily the contour - the highlighter side of this kit is a bit too light for my fair Irish skin - and applied that on my cheekbones, over my forehead, sides of my nose and chin. 
For blush I used the Catrice Defining Blush in 080 'Sunrose Avenue'.

For the eyes I was kind of trying to copy a makeup look I see on an New Zealand blogger Shaaanxo - I was obsessed with it! It involved using a gel eyeliner (I used Mac) and smudging it out along the outer corner. I'm not sure I really did it like her, but I made an attempt at it anyways! I used the Catrice Absolute Nude Eyeshadow Palette just to brighten the look up. I used Benefit They're Real! Mascara on my upper and lower eyelashes. I then used Mac's Pink Noveau as a lipstick. I then used Catrice Prime and Fine highlighting powder to add highlight to my face. I used Penneys PS Beauty Brow Kit to fill in my brows.

As my blog is aimed towards the budget conscious, I was aware that some of the products used don't exactly match the criteria. Benefit They're Real! Mascara being one of them. This was a product I wanted to try out for ages, and I wasn't disappointed with it - makes your eyelashes look like they're false (no messing around with glue and false eyelashes, yes to that!) and the top of the brush is super small to coat even the smallest of eyelashes. I am in the process of reviewing a product that's a little cheaper than this baby though.

The MAC lipsticks I wanted to try out for a long time. I ordered the classics like Russian Red, but I randomly picked Pink Noveau. I have tried it out a few times on myself and I absolutely adore the colour and the staying power - it will literally stay put the whole night. The horrendously bad lighting in the photo of me makes it look slightly darker on me than it actually is as you can see from the picture of it taken from the Mac website. I am in the process of looking for cheaper alternatives at the moment though, as the Mac products are expensive.

As for the MAC gel eyeliner, this was actually my first time using gel eyeliner. Most of the time, I use liquid eyeliner  but was wanting to choose a gel eyeliner as this look involved smudging it (you can't really smudge liquid eyeliner any bit to be honest - ends up everywhere!) and this one seemed to get quite good reviews online. I love it myself as it glides on super easy and lasts all day, but I'm currently in the process of looking for a cheaper gel eyeliner alternative and will update the blog when I do.










Product Details:


Rimmel Lasting Finish Foundation in '100 Ivory'. €9.99, Penneys.
Concealer Palette. €10, Chinese wholesale website.
Boots Seventeen Define and Contour Contouring Kit. €7.59, Boots.
Nivea Daily Essentials Express Hydration Primer. €6.49, Penneys.
MAC Lipstick in 'Pink Noveau'. £15.50 (around €21), maccosmetics.co.uk
Benefit They're Real! Mascara. €26.00, Boots.
Catrice Prime and Fine Highlighting Powder, €4, Penneys.
Kubiss London Powder in No.2 'Candle'. €2, local chemist.
Catrice Absolute Nude Eyeshadow Palette, €5.49, Penneys.
PS Beauty Brow Kit, €1.50, Penneys.
Catrice Defining Blush in 080 'Sunrose Avenue'. €4.49, Penneys.
MAC Fluidline Gel Eyeliner, £15.50, (around €21), maccosmetics.co.uk






Welcome!

Hello ladies!
Welcome to my blog!!
I have a huge interest in fashion and makeup as well as checking out all kinds of blogs on them so I just decided to go the whole hog and make one for myself after months of deliberation - sure why not!
So what makes kissandmakeupnow.blogspot.ie different from all the other blogs out there? I'll be basing all of my looks on reasonably affordable products that I've tried and tested that can be easily bought in Penneys or Boots as I know from my own experience as a young teenage girl and also as an extremely broke college student you just don't have money for all expensive beauty brands but still want to achieve a nice look. Honestly you will find that these cheaper products work sometimes as good if not better as the high end products, so rest assured I will only be backing high end products like Mac if I can honestly say hand on heart I was really really impressed with them,  even then I will suggest more affordable options! 
I will be posting makeup looks I tried out on myself, product reviews, outfits of the days and nights, and much more! so if you want to keep up with my fashion and makeup ideas and looks, then keep tuned ! :)