Sunday 25 May 2014

OPI Top Coat ~ A Review

OPI Top Coat *

Hello Lovelies, 

You're already all aware that I have a bit of a problem when it comes to nail polishes and products and I do have a rather large collection of polishes now, some would say it's a little much but can a girl really have too many nail polishes? Ok don't answer that.

I adore Orly nail products and always use my beloved Glosser top coat over all my nail polishes and have done for many years, I have tried other top coats but have yet to find one I like more. 

When I was sent the OPI top coat to try I had high hopes, OPI is a brand well known in the beauty world and a brand a lot of people love. It is one of the more expensive brands with the top coat retailing at around £11 - £13 dependant of where you buy it. I don't own a lot of OPI polishes, a few years ago I did have quite a collection but as with all things we change things up and find new products and apart from a Christmas set with 4 minis in I bought around October last year, I haven't bought an OPI product for a few years so I was very excited to try the top coat.

I applied the top coat over my Orly polish, Choreographed Chaos. I allowed my Orly polish to dry fully between coats and also before I applied the OPI top coat. 

My Thoughts On The Top Coat ~ 

The top coat applied well and the first thing I noticed was that the brush is quite a wide brush, something I do like as I find wider brushes apply products much easier. I did also notice that the top coat seemed thicker in consistency than my usual top coat but seemed to apply well with no problems, I did notice that the OPI top coat didn't seem as glossy as my usual choice of top coat but hoped it would be once dry. Unfortunately the top coat didn't become any more glossy once dry, my nails did have a nice shine but nothing like the shine I have when using my Orly top coat. 

The most disappointing thing I noticed was that the top coat bubbled, it looked awful, not on every nail but 8 out of 10 of my nails had a horrible bubbled effect. 

my bubbly nails

As you can see in the above photograph my nails have a bubbled effect, it is worse on some nails more than others, but it looks terrible. I was very disappointed by the OPI top coat, my nails looked a mess and were no where near as shiny as when I use my Orly top coat. I had high hopes for the product as the brand has such a great reputation but my nails looked terrible. 
I certainly wouldn't purchase this product, the shine wasn't great and I'm not one for bubbly nails to be honest so I will definitely be sticking to my Orly glosser from now on. 

If you do like OPI products and would like to try the top coat, you can find it here and here

What is your favourite top coat? 

Thank you for reading, much love

Zoe x

*this post contains a pr sample


Wednesday 21 May 2014

Estee Lauder Double Wear All Day Glow BB Cream ~ Review

Hello Lovelies, 

You may have seen in my last haul video (link here) that I picked up a sample of the Estee Lauder Double Wear All Day Glow BB cream to try after reading lots of reviews and seeing loads of Instagram photographs all claiming that it was an amazing product.

The card holding the sample

My sample in shade 01

The idea of the product is that it is as long wearing as Double Wear foundation but with the formulation of a BB cream, here's what Estee Lauder say about the product on their website 

The first luminous, long-wear BB from Estée Lauder.

Now you have hours to glow. The BB Makeup that brightens, perfects and evens. Lightweight, oil-free, moisture-fresh.
Protects with high-level SPF 30. 

Instantly perfects skintone and vibrancy. Soft optics impart clear, bright tone and lustre to skin for a flawless, healthy glow. Provides Vitamin E and Vitamin C anti-oxidant protection. 

In a range of shades, perfect for all skintones.

• Long-wear - Up to 8 hours
• Oil-free
• Dermatologist-tested
• Ophthalmologist-tested
• Fragrance-free
• Non-acnegenic

I was matched and given shade 01 by the sales assistant at the counter, I thought it looked a little pale in the bottle but it did look dark on my hand where she matched me, yes you read that right, she matched me on the back of my hand! 

I asked the sales assistant her advice on how best to apply the bb cream and she said it could be applied with a brush or fingers but she found fingers best, she said I would need a good cleanser to remove the product and should maybe double cleanse as it can be quite hard to remove. 

So armed with all my info I tried the bb cream out, I decided to apply the bb cream using my fingers to one side of my face and a brush for the other side of my face, my base brush of choice is the real techniques expert face brush. I decided to go for finger application first and as soon as I started to try and rub the product in I noticed the very strange texture which I can only describe to you as grease paint, it felt horrible, very very thick and almost lard like, the other thing I noticed was that it was totally the wrong colour for me and even though it looked dark on my hand was incredibly pale on my skin, I tried my best to apply it using my fingers and then used my brush on the other side of my face, again I found it very hard to apply and it looked absolutely awful. 

Shade 01

Shade 01 blended

The finish was very strange and extremely shiny, not dewy but very very shiny and I would certainly have to powder. It was the strangest feeling base product I have ever tried on my skin, it didn't apply well and looked absolutely awful. 

Unfortunately I don't have any photographs of me wearing the bb cream as it was so pale and looked so terrible I immediately removed it, but in the time it took me from applying it to getting to the bathroom to remove it, it had already began to settle in my fine lines under my eyes, so I can only imagine it would have looked horrendous after an hour or so. 

I was really disappointed in the product and desperately wanted to love it, I adore the Day Wear Sheer Tint Release available here and use it as my go to base throughout spring/summer for years. But the bb cream was awful, it felt awful and looked awful and the colour was totally wrong, I have seen the next shade up 02 but that would be far too dark for me and I have heard a lot of people saying they needed to mix 2 colours to find the perfect shade but at £29 a go I doubt I'd be buying 2 to mix! 

Overall I was really unhappy with the bb cream and although I couldn't try it for a long period of time, believe me 15 minutes was quite long enough, I looked like a pasty face who'd started to grease up to swim the channel, it really wasn't for me and is a definite 0 out of 10. I shall stick to my day wear for sure. 

Having very dry and dehydrated skin I am always on the look out for bb creams to try, so if you have any recommendations at all please let me know, so far out of the ones I have tried for review purposes my all time favourite has to be the Decleor 24 hour moisture activator bb cream full review here

If you love Estee Lauder and want to try the bb cream, it is available here for £29. 

Thank you for reading, much love as always, 

Zoe x 


Monday 19 May 2014

The Orange Lip Trend.........With A Difference.

Hello Lovelies, 

I think it's fair to say the orange lip was/is a massive trend for spring and summer this year, it looks great on so many different skin tones and is a beautiful colour for the season.  I have seen lots of people rocking a fabulous orange lip, I love the trend and think it looks amazing, that is apart from on me, I just don't suit orange lipstick it isn't my thing at all, red/orange as in Lady Danger by MAC maybe but full on orange just isn't me, however like I said I am in love with the trend of the orange lip and one thing I do absolutely adore and does suit me is a coral lip so this is my take on the orange lip trend, the coral lip trend. 

I have a ridiculous amount of coral toned lipsticks in my collection and I really did struggle finding my favourite picks for this post, believe me I could easily have had a favourite 15 instead of 5. I wasn't sure if to include a lip pencil or not in this post as I know they're not something everyone uses,  I don't always use a lip pencil myself, but if I do use a lip pencil under a coral toned lipstick my favourite would be Lasting Sensation by MAC it's a beautiful coral toned pencil that also looks amazing used alone all over the lip. 

So these are the 5 lipsticks I have chosen, left to right they are ~ 

Estee Lauder Signature Lipstick in Portofino Coral £21.
MAC Betty Bright Lipstick Limited Edition.
Maybelline Colour Sensational Vivid in Shocking Coral £7.19 .
MAC Frost Finish Lipstick in Costa Chic £15.00.
YSL Rouge Volupte in Peach Passion (number 13) £24.50.

As you can see the corals I have chosen are all quite bright, they are all amazing colours that in my opinion would suit many skin tones, and are gorgeous colours for summer too. 

For longevity, the Estee Lauder, Maybelline and MAC Betty Bright are the best and give the most wear time, I get around 5/6 hours of wear time with all these, that includes eating and drinking too, MAC Costa Chic is a frost finish and my least favourite finish of all MAC lipsticks but for a frost finish the wear time is quite good and I get around 2/3 hours wear time from it, from the YSL rouge volupte I get around 2 hours wear time. 

Packaging wise the Estee Lauder and YSL are stunning, but the YSL tips it for me. I had lusted over a YSL rouge volupte lipstick (well 2 actually) for so many years but just couldn't justify almost £25 for a lipstick, or £50 for 2 as it would be. I looked at them online almost daily and the 2 colours I loved were peach passion and nude beige, both stunning colours. Then I got a huge shock as my gorgeous friend Laura bought me peach passion as part of my Christmas gift and then for my birthday she bought me nude beige as did one of my other lovely friends Katrina, I am so lucky to have such kind and very generous friends who clearly know me inside out, both were a massive surprise but a lovely one, and I'm sure you'll agree the packaging is beautiful. 

Finish wise all the lipsticks feel lovely on the lips, the YSL and Estee Lauder are definitely the most moisturising without a doubt, but none of them are drying in the slightest. Again the YSL tips it in the moisturising stakes as it is beautifully creamy and glides on the lips, it also has the most amazing scent too. 

Price wise, the Maybelline is obviously the cheapest and the YSL the most expensive, and the packaging of the Maybelline is clearly nowhere near as beautiful as the YSL or Estee lauder but I love the Maybelline vivids and highly recommend them, they have some lovely colours and the longevity of the lipsticks is as good if not better than some of my high end lipsticks, so although the outer packaging isn't as nice as my high end choices, the product is amazing and I would highly recommend it any day of the week. 

Overall I love all 5 of the lipsticks and would highly recommend them all without hesitation, they are a beautiful colour for the coming summer months and are bang on trend for anyone wanting to rock the orange lip trend but with a little bit of a difference. 

If you have any questions or comments please feel free to leave them for me in the comments section below and I will get back to you asap, I do reply to all my comments and questions. 

As always, thank you for reading, much love, 

Zoe x

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