Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Beauty for Charity

There are a few amazing things going on in the beauty world that I wanted to mention.

Firstly I wanted to mention the BeautyBloggers.org auction to raise money for Médecins Sans Frontières. The auction is already live and will run until 20th December. They idea behind the charity auction came from Karla Sugar and she has brought together almost 50 bloggers and brands to help. There have been some amazing items donated. The auction is open to international bids, postage is free (and will be covered by the person who made the donation) and all the winning bids will go directly to Médecins Sans Frontières. MSF provides medical treatment for people in crisis regardless of race, religion or politics. They work in areas of ongoing armed conflict, areas suffering with epidemics and those struggling after natural disaster. You can see a list of their activities here.

Tomorrow, MAC Makeup Artists in London, Dublin and Edinburgh will take part in MAC's global initiative to commemorate World AIDS Day.

"M·A·C artists from the UK and Ireland will pitch in to help at London’s Positive East and Edinburgh’s Waverley Care and give up some of their free time to decorate nominated service areas and meeting rooms which are frequently used by visitors to both Charities.  The M·A·C Aids Fund has supported Positive East since 2006 and Edinburgh’s Waverley Care for over 10 years. To raise awareness on World Aids Day in Dublin, M·A·C Friends and Colleagues are joining the Open Heart House charity “Sleep Out”.  This will be the inaugural Open Heart House “Sleep Out” and it is a great way for M·A·C to develop the support it has given to this charity since January 2000. The M·A·C AIDS Fund has donated a combined total of over £230,000 to these three charities for various projects."

MAC has had a longstanding connection with AIDS charities. 100% of the sales of the Viva Glam lipsticks and lipglosses goes to fight HIV/AIDS.  You can learn more about the work of the MAC AIDS fund at www.macaidsfund.org.

I also wanted to mention the work of Give And Makeup and the current Shoebox Campaign. The aim of Give and Makeup is to provide much needed toiletries to women who find themselves at Refuge centres, fleeing terrible domestic situations. For some women it is a very hard decision to leave an abusive or violent home and the last thing on their minds are the practicalities of leaving and packing a soap bag. You can find a list here of the items you can donate to Give and Makeup. For the current Christmas campaign they are also looking for donations of shoeboxes containing items for children, such as toys, books, puzzles, colouring pencils and pads, soft toys and pyjamas, as well as the usual toiletries. If you think you might be able to give something, please have a look here for details.

Thank you so much for reading.

Monday, 29 November 2010

Maybelline Mystic Mauve Lipstick

A couple of weeks ago Cheeky Beauty recommended a lipstick to me that she though I would love. Unfortunately, with the poorly children and other issues I hadn't been able to get to the shops to have a look. Knowing what a miserable time I was having, she very kindly sent me a surprise package with a special note and the lipstick inside. I was really touched by such a kind gesture. Thank you so much Cheeky Beauty, I can't tell you how much it cheered me up! You were right too, this absolutely is my kind of colour.

Natural light
Natural light

Mystic Mauve is lovely. It reminds me a little of MAC Modesty cremesheen, as well being a lighter, more muted version of Night Romance. It was difficult to capture the exact colour on camera (hence the number of pictures). In natural light it photographs a little warmer than it really is. I would describe it as a cool toned, mauve pink. It is a creamy formula, very pigmented and really comfortable to wear. It lasts well too. It is a Colour Sensational lipstick and I will admit that I'm interesting in swatching some of the other colours.

Thank you again to Cheeky Beauty for sending me the lipstick. You can see her swatches of Mystic Mauve here.

ELF Christmas Collection

ELF have some really lovely gift sets out for Christmas. I've just spotted the Glittery Studio Brush Collection and I'm very tempted! There are Christmas Get the Look sets, new nail varnishes as well as the great value eyeshadow sets and beauty encyclopedias.

I was sent a Natural Eyeshadow palette and the 32 piece eyeshadow to try. I was really struck by the selection of colours in the 32 piece set. Even if you're not very adventurous with colour (like me) there are a lot of great neutral colours. The darker greens and blue would be a nice way to tip your toe in to some colour too.

LE Natural Eyeshadow Palette

I used the Natural palette today and have been very pleased with the result. I tried to find the palette online but I'm not sure if it has sold out already*. I wouldn't be at all surprised as this is similar to one of the MAC eyeshadow sets but obviously at fraction of the cost. The darker colours have good pigmentation and the formulation is very soft in a similar way to Sleek eyeshadows. The colours I have labelled as #1 and #2 are very sparkly and not quite as smooth to apply.

*Update: the palettes are temporarily out of stock after the anniversary event but once the orders have dispatched the website will be updated with current availability.

On my eyes I applied shadow #4 all over the lid. It's very similar to my skin colour and provided a nice base. I applied #3 on the outer corner and in to the crease. I applied #6 on the outermost corner and in to the crease to add more definition. I applied #5 on the inner corner and added a little of #1 as a brow highlight. I lined my lid and lower waterline with MAC Teddy Eye Kohl and finished off with Maybelline Lash Stiletto mascara.

The Christmas sets are available from www.eyelipsface.co.uk. The 32 piece Eyeshadow Palette costs £9.00 and the Natural Palette cost £3.50. As the Natural Palette is temporarily out of stock, I've been told the Beauty Encyclopedia in Everyday Eyes which costs £6.00 is a good alternative.

Disclosure: The items were sent to me without charge.

Current Beauty Routine Tag

As I haven't had chance to write a post over the weekend I though it might be fun to do a little tag post. I discovered this tag on Dempeaux's blog and thought it would be an interesting one to do. So, here's what I'm using currently using..

01. Cleanser: Boots No.7 Radiance Boosting Hot Cloth Cleanser
02. Toner/lotion: I don't regularly use a toner. Don't hate me!
03. Cream/moisturizer: Eyes - Alva Sanddorn Eye Cream, Day - Karin Herzog Vitamin H Cream followed by the Vita-A-Kombi Fruit Acids Cream, Evening - Karin Herzog Vita-A-Kombi Facial Oil followed by the Vita-A-Kombi Fruit Acids Cream.
04. Facial mask: Montagne Jeunesse or REN Glycolatic Peel Mask
05. Exfoliator: Trilogy Gentle Exfoliator
06. Make-up remover: The Body Shop Camomile Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover

07. Shower gels/soaps: Original Source Lime Shower Gel
08. Body lotions/creams: Haus of Gloi Hearth or Samhain Pumpkin Butter
09. Anticellulite/firming treatment: Hmmm.....I'm slack enough on the moisturiser without adding in treatments!
10. Body exfoliator: Shower scrunchie (though I have Haus of Gloi Parkin sugar scrub which I need to try at some point).
11. Hand cream: L'Occitante Fleur Cherie Hand Cream
12. Lip balm or lip treatment: Lanolips Lip Ointment in Rose or Fig & Rouge Rambling Rose lip balm
13. Perfume: Donna Karan Cashmere Mist

14. Shampoo/conditioner: Louise Galvin Pure Shine Shampoo and Conditioner
15. Mask or other treatments: I usually use one of the treatment conditioners that come with my hair dyes at least once a week.

16. Foundation: Lancome Teint Miracle in 02
17. Powder: It's rare for me to use powder but I have been using the ELF HD Powder occasionally.
18. Blush: Illamasqua Unrequited and Avon Earthen Rose
19. Mascara: Hourglass Film Noir mascara
20. Lipstick/lipgloss: Maybelline Mystic Mauve (thank you Cheeky Beauty!)
21. Eyeshadow: Le Metier de Beaute Le Cirque Kaleidescope
22. Eyeliner: Le Metier Champagne pencil and Rouge Bunny Rouge Lacquer Liner

To update you on what I've been up to this weekend, here's a shot of the nail varnishes I've picked up over the last 48 hours. It's a mixture of Avon, China Glaze and Accessorize. I was so excited to give them a try that I actually sporting muti-coloured nails. Going on a shopping trip with other Beauty Bloggers is a recipe for purchases!

I hope you've all had a lovely weekend x

Friday, 26 November 2010

Expensive Make-up Musings: Is There A Limit?

I started taking some pictures for a post this morning. I was opening some Kjaer Weis refills to put in my new Unii palette. Once I had opened them I was actually rather stunned at their size. The pan contains 1.2g of eyeshadow as opposed to 1.5g for MAC or 2.4g for Rouge Bunny Rouge. I tweeted at my surprise at the cost of the eyeshadows for the weight. Now to be fair I paid £10.40 each for the refill as I bought them with a 20% off code from SpaceNK. If you read my blog regularly you'll already know I'm not averse to spendy items. So what exactly is the problem here?

These eyeshadows in their proper packaging cost £32. The pan inside is the same size as the refill so it is small (although pictures of it in the casing led me to believe it was considerably bigger). In the casing the cost is £26.67 per gram of product. If you consider that a Rouge Bunny Rouge eyeshadow is £9.17 per gram and a MAC eyeshadow is £7.33 per gram you will begin to get my point. Even the Le Metier de Beaute Le Cirque Kaleidescope at £65 for four eyeshadows represents much better value for money.

Le Cirque Kaleidoscope, Kjaer Weis Wisdom, RBR Solstice Halcyon

I should point out that I haven't even swatched these eyeshadows yet. They might well blow me away. This is an organic range and I appreciate that will have an impact on the price but I do question why it is more expensive and much smaller than other lines? All of this pondering has left me wondering, where do I draw the line? I suppose I already know that I wouldn't have paid £32 for eyeshadow in the pretty pot. I don't think any of this will prevent me from enjoying the eyeshadows but it might make me think twice about recommending them.

So, what is your take on it? Do you have a cut off point? At what price does something go from luxury to overpriced? I'd really love to know your thoughts?

Lady of the Lane Confesses All!

I was really excited when Charlie aka Lady of the Lane volunteered for the Friday Confessional. I was sure she would have a few naughty gems hidden from the beauty blogging public. So I was concerned when Charlie said she was struggling to think of something to write. Surely she wasn't going to show me up and be a true paragon of cosmetic virtue? It turns out she was just struggling with where to start.....

Confession is good for the soul, go ahead and unburden yourself! I promise I won’t judge.

I am the ultimate. I have so many confessions, my problem will be narrowing this list down so I don’t write too much. Where to start? Ok like previous confessors before me, I have been fond of the Sun In.

I’ll start with tales from my teens. I wasn’t allowed make up until I was 15 maybe? But I had a school friend whose mum was an Avon lady and so I managed to get myself a fair little collection. I had the obligatory electric blue mascara, sky blue eyeliner, frost pink lipstick and a tub of loose powder in a beautiful golden fuchsia (which incidentally I would love to have now). Since I wasn’t allowed to wear make up, the only time I could wear it was to do my paper round. So yes, I’d pile the lot on before I went and clean it all off before I got home. The most chavtastic, 80’s papergirl on the block. That was me.

Nowadays, of course I’m a paragon of beauty perfection. See the following for examples of my perfect behaviour.

•   Brush washing, um…every three months maybe? So skanky I know, sometimes I get a conscience   about my foundation brush and that gets in between washes, I think because it’s applying wet products.

•   What else? I’m a picker and a squeezer, I know I shouldn’t, I have the scars to prove it, but I still can’t stop, I guess it’s a compulsion.

•   Um, often in winter, I can go for quite some time without shaving my legs. I can’t ever bring myself to skip my armpits but yes, legs, I go through phases of doing them daily, and not being bothered until my legs resemble the Forest of Dean.

•   Spots. I commit a cardinal sin, knowingly and defiantly. You ever get those spots that are too smooth and shiny to cover? Anything you put on slides immediately off? I’ll just keep layering the make up on. Concealer, powder, concealer, powder and so on. And yes, you can see it. Yes it’s obvious, and yes, sometimes it’s orange. I just have such a thing about spots I’d rather have an orange blob on my face than a visible spot. Entirely ridiculous, I barely ever notice if someone else has a blemish, but if I have one I feel like a total freak of nature. I know the make up is worse. I’m not thick, but I can’t help it.

•   Let me think now. What else could there be? My toenails… I like to polish them every few months, but I rarely remove it to put on a nice coat of polish on, no it can be there months, chipping away before I finally decide to sort it out.

•   I don’t think I’ve ever moisturised my whole body. Upper arms and lower legs get done after every bath or shower, but other bits, well, sometimes they get done, but never ever do I sit and do my entire body.

There, don’t you feel better now? Not really. I’m expecting to lose a few blog readers….

Aunty Brown has a few more questions though; it’s true that I’m the nosy type.

When was the last time you visited the hairdresser?
After my first baby was born I really struggled to find the time to get my hair done so my hairdresser offered to come to the house to do it. As a result I have mine done approximately every 10 weeks.

You have a choice: bad hair or bad nails?
Without a shadow of a doubt bad nails. People notice your hair much more than your nails. If my nails were messed up (which they were, I’ve bitten my nails all my life) I could stick on some falsies at a relatively low cost, but if my hair was ruined then there’d be no hiding it without a hat full time or a wig.

What is the oldest item of make up in your collection?
I really don’t know! I don’t think I’ve got anything older than three years? I regularly turn over my stuff!

Which trend still makes you cringe?
Clearly my worse ever horror was dark liner, nude lips. My only great relief in life is that that I never felt compelled to hairspray my fringe up in a huge vertical style.


What can I say? A true corker of a confession. The Confessional is very similar to Pringles in the sense that once you start, it's very hard to stop! Thank you very much to Charlie for sharing.

If you would like to take a turn and unburden yourself in the Friday Confessional you can email me at modestybrown@googlemail.com. It's open to everyone: if you have something to confess, I'm happy to hear it!

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Montagne Jeunesse Tottles

When I heard about the Montagne Jeunesse masks in "Tottles" form I was really keen to give them a try. I've been picking up their masks in Boots and Superdrug for a long time. If I remember rightly I even added some to the Christmas Beauty boxes I gave to family members last year. I think they're a nice and affordable way to have a little pamper of an evening. It can be a little messy getting the masks out of the sachet so the squeezy tube/bottle idea is a good one.

I received four of the masks to try: Sensuous Spice, Tropical Peel Off, Dark Chocolate and Damask Rose. I know you've probably read lots of reviews already but I wanted to try them all out before writing a review and with my skin having a little freak out I needed to space them out.

I tried Damask Rose first of all and I really like it. I picked this one first as it was at the peak of my bad skin and as it's supposed to be an ultra deep cleansing mask I thought it would be a good choice. It really helped dry up the outbreak on my chin. It was very relaxing and I rather like the smell. It reminds me of the old Immac scent before it became Veet. In a good way of course! It's a clay mask so it goes on wet and dries on the skin. It contains kaolin, natural clay and Mediterranean clay for a full on purifying experience.
Next up was the Tropical Peel Off mask. This smells really nice and goes on easily. I was too stingy with my application though and couldn't peel it off in one go (I was very disappointed, peeling is so satisfying). My recommendation is that you apply liberally to ensure you get good peel action.

I tried the Sensuous Spice mask a few days later. This is a self warming mask and although the colour is a little strange, I loved the warming sensation. It has a very nice, almost Christmassy spiced scent to it. The heat is really relaxing too.

I saved the Dark Chocolate till last. This mask has such an amazing chocolate orange scent which filled my bathroom and set off a few cravings. This was another clay mask and whilst it was relaxing, I was pleased to know it was working on my blemishes. This is one best used when you're not going to be disturbed though. I was caught out whilst wearing this by both baby and husband. Baby cried and husband laughed! Take care when washing it off too as the dark colour means it's quite prone to staining.

I would happily recommend all of these. At £4.99 I think they're an affordable treat. I like the new Tottles packaging too. These are available in Superdrug and also from www.montagnejeunesse.com.

Disclosure: PR sample.

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

My Make-up Journey

As I write this, I am sat with absolutely no make-up on. I didn't have enough time to put any on this morning and I have been out in public like this. It got me thinking out make-up, my attitude to it and how it has changed over the years.

The Early Years

I have always been a magpie when it comes to makeup. I remember my first Tinkerbell make-up set and the peel off nail varnish (which set me up for many years of manicure mutilation). I remember my Girls World and the early forays into Avon make-up. Make-up was something special but still very much about playing dress up. I did have a little friend that was fond of Max Factor pan stick even in those very early years.

The Teenage Years

I don't recall ever trying to wear make-up to school. Plenty did though and the orange face with brown lipstick and pencil thin brows was the look of choice. It changed from the frosted lipsticks of the late 80's to the opaque, matte formulas of the 90's. I was certainly buying and trying but not really wearing.

Linda E succeeding where others failed

Then I hit my goth/grungy phase and it was all about the pale face, dark lipstick and black nails. Although I quickly lost the German Army jacket when I hit University, the make-up look persisted. Though it became more Mia Wallace than Shakespeare's Sister-esque!

It also became a running joke that if you ever needed to find me I could be found in Boots. I would spend many happy hours pouring over the aisles. I would venture in to Debenhams and Jarrold's department store sometimes but the fear of counters always stopped me visiting for long. I have a sneaking suspicion that Sam Chapman was working at my local Clinique counter at this point. If only I'd stood still for my more than five minutes I might have learned something!

Becoming a Grown up

Throughout my 20's the shift from wearing make-up for nights out only to a more everyday thing began to happen. It changed from a way of making a statement, to a way to look more polished. I would still often wear nothing at all even in to my late 20's. As I worked in a lab with mostly men I couldn't always be bothered. Lazy, moi? I still bought lots of make-up though but just didn't know how to put it on. I did however spend lots of money on expensive skincare and regularly slapped on the St. Tropez.
The real change came when I hit my 30's. It was more to do with having children than my age I think. I looked tired from the broken nights and needed a something to blur the edges! This is me at 30.


I did my own make-up and to be honest I barely had anything on. Skip forward nine months or so when I was heavily pregnant and had discovered Specktra and I would have been wearing considerably more. There's nothing that makes you concentrate on your face more than looking like the Goodyear blimp in maternity joggers! I discovered MAC, swatches and online shopping.

Once I found YouTube tutorials and then blogs I never looked back. I learned how to use brushes and stopped using the dreaded sponge applicators. I learned that I could wear blusher without looking like Aunt Sally. I also discovered that I could buy make-up in the colours I wanted without going anywhere near a scary counter. I probably go for quite boring looks to some but the colours I wear make me happy and although not necessarily trendy, I find they make me look like a slightly better, less tired me.

As a final note, I just wanted to add my thanks to the online beauty community. To all of those who take the time to make tutorials, write posts, share swatches and reviews, thank you for all of your efforts. You've taught me so much and given me the confidence to do it myself. If it weren't for you I would most likely be bare-faced most days. I think my bank manager would like a word though....

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Eyeko Portobello Lipgloss

I received this lipgloss as part of the Eyeko Ambassador scheme. I was really pleased when I saw the colour as it looks like NARS Orgasm in lipgloss form. It's a pretty colour, smells like Sweetheart sweeties and although it feels a little sticky it feels quite moisturising too.

Here's the rest of today's makeup.

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage SC-3
RMK Super Basic Liquid Concealer
Shu Uemura brow pencil
NARS Laguna
Paul & Joe Face Colour in 04 (thank you Nina!)

Too Faced Shadow Insurance
NARS Mélusine eyeshadow duo
RBR Lacquer Liner
Maybelline Lash Stiletto

Writing this post has reminded me that I bought some Eyeko polishes a little while ago and I still need to try a few of them out. I'm intrigued to try the Fat Balm next as these seem really popular. Do you have an Eyeko favourites you can recommend?

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage

Despite already having put an order in to SpaceNK in the week, I couldn't resist popping along to my local shop on Saturday. I'd particularly wanted to look at NARS Amour and Dolce Vita in the flesh. On seeing them in person, I decided to give them both a miss and moved on to the Laura Mercier. Just as I spotted the Colour Wardrobe a Sales Assistant came to see if I needed any help. Cut forward to me leaving the shop without a blusher as I'd intended but Secret Camouflage concealer in SC-3...
Now this is where my problem lies. I am rubbish at matching myself, I go for the second shade in pretty much everything and try to avoid anything too pink toned. I would have picked SC-2 for myself but the SA, who initially thought SC-2 as well, said that the SC-3 was a better match. Struck mute by THE FEAR, I went ahead and purchased it despite my fairly great reservations. I even stood outside afterwards pondering if I should go back in and swap it whilst it was still untouched.

I waited till the next day and good daylight to see how it looked. It looks dark in the pan and I was sure it would be wrong. However, on my face it seems ok. So, I've decided to let you, my lovely readers, see what you think. Is it a match or a miss? I warn you, these are not pretty pictures!

As ever, the colour is bleached out as the images are small. You can click on them if you dare wish to see the true colour. The comparison is still accurate though.

Cheek swatch (unblended)

These are unblended swatches of both colours on my cheek and hands. I forgot to add a swatch of the mixed colour which I think would have been useful. A touch of the darker colour with the lighter does provide a slightly better undertone match.

No Concealer
With Concealer

In the bottom picture I have concealer covering the blemish and redness on my chin, on the blemish on my jaw and also around the nose area to cover redness.

What do you think? Do you think it is an ok match? Also out of interest do you often struggle with matching yourself and if so are you happy to be advised? How would you go about buying a different shade to the one you were matched with? I'd be very interested to hear your stories.

Don't worry, I'll be posting a FOTD shortly. I promise not to leave you staring at my bare face for long!

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Rouge Bunny Rouge - Unassailable Loveliness

Rouge Bunny Rouge have released some new products as part of the Unassailable Loveliness look. A Mattifying Primer - METAMORPHOSES, a dual ended eye brightening pencil - EYES WIDE OPEN and a melting makeup cleanser - DELIQUESE. It also includes the Naked Disguise pencil concealer that was released at Zuneta earlier this year.

The mattifying primer promises to give the skin a velvet matte suede glow, it removes shine and evens skin tone. I rather like the idea of the pore tightening effect. I confess, I never really use primer but I can see the benefit of using something like this before foundation to get improved application. This costs £44 from Zuneta.

The white end of the liner duo is a sheer, pearlecent shade which can be used to highlight the brow bone, as well as the inner or outer corners of the eyes. The rose toned shade is designed to be applied to the waterline to brighten the eyes without being as stark as white. The pencils are formulated with natural oils and waxes to make them soft and light to apply. The duo liner costs £22.

The aromatic Deliquesce cleanser sounds similar to other melting cleansers like Even Lom and Emma Hardie. It melts with the warmth of your hands and then emulsifies with water to make up even waterproof products. It even promises to remove waterproof make up. I haven't tried any of Rouge Bunny Rouge's skincare but this does sound very tempting. As it's such a luxurious brand in my imagination this would smell and feel beautiful. It does have a very luxurious price of course, and costs £47 for 50ml.

All of the products are available from Zuneta who ship Worldwide.

Friday, 19 November 2010

Guest Review of Tom Ford Private Blend Lipsticks

You may already realise that I would rather like a Tom Ford lipstick for Christmas. Of course when it comes to spending £35 on a lipstick you want to know you're making the right choice, so I often stalk other blogs as research. I feel very blessed as the gorgeous Lipstick Luvvie has agreed to do a guest post and share her thoughts on her Tom Ford collection. Jennifer has a lovely blog and I highly recommend popping along for read.


Beauty lovers everywhere had something new to add to their wish lists in April this year when acclaimed fashion designer and recent film director Tom Ford branched into cosmetics, launching the perfect lipstick wardrobe of twelve universally flattering shades. Unfortunately for everyone's wallets, these luxurious delights cost a staggering £35. Granted, that is less than Serge Lutens, but they are a considered purchase.

If you are still catching your breath from the price, fear not, there is a chance to get the colour of your choice for free by entering my giveaway. For details see here. Now back to the product.

Tom Ford Private Blend Lipstick in True Coral - £35

They come in sleek and distinctive white and gold packaging and the first thing that struck me about them is their weight. They feel heavy and expensive, and unlike traditional black or metallic, don't show messy fingerprints - important when whipping them out of your handbag.

Said to encompass pure colour with just the right balance of luminosity, the 12 shades of lipstick are divided into 3 distinct colour families, nudes, bolds and dramatics. The colours are as follows:

  • Vanilla Suede
  • Blush Nude
  • Warm Sable
  • Pink Dusk

  • Pure Pink
  • Ginger Fawn
  • True Coral
  • Cherry Lush

  • Smoke Red
  • Moroccan Rouge
  • Bruised Plum
  • Black Orchid

The formula includes rich, natural ingredients like Saja seed extract, Brazilian Murumuru butter and Chamomilla flower oil, to give a highly pigmented but non drying finish. Although not specifically scented, when you use them a definite vanilla fragrance comes through.

Left to right: Pure Pink, Cherry Lush, True Coral, Bruised Plum, Pink Dusk

The bolds were the colour family that really called out to me and my first purchase was Pure Pink. It was everything I hoped and more. Great pigment, comforting on the lips but not so much that you would worry your lipstick had smeared, for me it was worth every penny. It is one of those colours that lights up my face even if I am not wearing any other makeup.

My Tom Ford love affair has developed into a bit of an addiction, and since February, four more shades have appeared on my dressing table. I now have a shade from each of the three colour groups, but the bolds remain my favourite and I think the most flattering.

I'll admit I didn't get on with the nude I bought, Pink Dusk. It is still the same quality as the others, but the colour tends to wash me out and I would need a lot of smokey eye makeup for it to work. I'm sure it would look great on somebody else, but it doesn't work with my colouring. Bruised Plum was my first foray into the dramatics and it is a lot more wearable than it looks in the photos. Perfect for a vampy autumn/winter.

Swatches Left to right: Pure Pink, Cherry Lush, True Coral, Bruised Plum, Pink Dusk

Hopefully the swatches will give you an idea of the vibrancy of the colours but they really need to be tried to be believed. For that reason I am offering someone the chance to win one Tom Ford Private Lipstick in the colour of their choice. All you need to do is become a follower of my blog, www.lipstickluvvies.com, and leave a comment under the original Giveaway Post stating which two shades (a first and second choice) you would most like to receive.

Good luck!

Tom Ford Private Blend Lipsticks are available online from Selfridges and Harrods for £35 each.

Some Turkish Smoke

I'm having the most rubbish week at home. Having failed to put a proper face on yesterday, I thought I would cheer myself up with some dark lips.

Turkish Smoke lipgloss

This was a PR sample from my Le Metier makeover, I'm not sure it's available as part of their permanent line. I suspect it's not a colour I would have chosen for myself, however I think it's really flattering on. It's dark enough to suit this seasons goth lips trend but as it's a gloss it's probably a little easier to work with.

It is quite pigmented, you only need a small amount to get good coverage. It's not as moisturising as the colours in the lip kit and it has a slight tacky feel to it. I really like the colour though and the peachy-gold glittery sparkle is very pretty. As you will see from the pictures, it fades to leaves a nice stain on the lips too.

The colour as it fades

RMK Super basic concealer - undereyes, around nose and on blemishes
Shu Uemura H9 Seal Brown brow pencil
NARS Laguna bronzer

Too Faced Shadow Insurace
Le Cirque Kalediescope - The oyster and taupe colours only
Le Metier Noir Precision liner
Hourglass Film Noir mascara

Le Metier Turkish Smoke Sheer Brilliance lip gloss


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