The budget eye liners that are making my peepers pop

Rimmel eyeliners

So I was wondering around my local boots a couple of weeks ago and I just so happened to find myself standing in front of the Rimmel stand. I wanted to pick up a cheap liquid liner as I had just used up the last of my Benefit They’re Real Push Up Liner sample. Of course I couldn’t just walk away with one teeny eye liner…so I got three (oops!) I treated myself to the waterproof Rimmel Exaggerate Eyeliner, Scandal Eyes Waterproof Kohl liner in Nude and the Exaggerate Automatic Waterproof Eye Definer in Emerald Sparkle.

I tested out the Rimmel Exaggerate Eyeliner first, I really like the felt applicator. It has a tapered tip so is perfect whether you want a thin natural line or a thicker flick (see photo below). I found the liner easy to apply, but it was strange as I have been using gel liner for years so I found it very wet in comparison! I was able to create a reasonably accurate wing and it was fairly black. I did have to go over my line slightly in places but I am just quite fussy! Overall for the price, it is a pretty nifty little thing and I would pick it up again for that price. So if you are after a budget eyeliner this may well be perfect for you.

Next I tried out the Scandal Eyes Waterproof Kohl Liner. I picked this up in the shade Nude, because I read a sneaky top tip that using a little bit of nude liner on your waterline brightens your eyes when you are tired and makes them look larger without being over the top. I had heard this tip before as a teenager, but with white eyeliner – this is seriously not a good look , it is far too obvious and doesn’t look natural! The product is very creamy and glides on beautifully. I really love the formula and I would definitely pick up other shades.

Lastly I tried out the Exaggerate Automatic Waterproof Eye Definer in Emerald Sparkle last weekend. I applied it to my upper lash line and then used the smudger to blend the colour upwards and outwards slightly to make my look slightly less dramatic. I love the effect and it was perfect to add a little bit of colour to a miserable autumn day.

Rimmel eyeliners swatches

These three Rimmel eyeliners have done the job for me and I would be more than happy to repurchase all of them. My favourite of the three is the Scandal Eyes Waterproof Kohl Liner purely because the formula is so creamy and fab. I think I will be adding a couple more shades to my wishlist! So if you are looking for some budget eyeliners to add to your collection, I recommend these little beauties. You can buy all three from Boots for £4.99 for the pencils and £5.29 for the liquid liner – bargain!

Have you tried these Rimmel eye liners? What are your favourite budget liners?  

How Vichy Dermablend foundation has improved my confidence

Vichy Dermablend foundation

I am usually quite reluctant to try out new foundations, I have been using MAC Studio Fix Fluid for years now as I love the buildable coverage. However I do find that for me, it can slightly exacerbate oil production and I regularly have to blot to avoid looking greasier than a chip pan. Whilst I have found some products that help reduce this, namely La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat moisturiser – I felt like an improvement could be made. So after reading lots of reviews I decided to try out Vichy Dermablend foundation.

Vichy Dermablend foundation

I know that I am a MAC NC15 so I used Temptalia’s Foundation Matrix to work out which shade I needed. If you have not used this tool before it is amazing. You can find hundreds of products on there so it really makes changing foundation easy as pie. So relying on the matrix I went with shade 15 Opal and I was pretty worried that it would be too dark. When I opened the tube I squeezed a tiny amount on the back of my hand and I was a little scared I’d look tangoed, but once I applied it to my face it blended in seamlessly and it is truly the perfect shade for me! I used my Real Techniques Expert Face Brush to buff in the foundation and I have to say it applies like a dream.

I worked in thin layers and built up the product on areas that needed a little more attention. I found that it was so high coverage that I could use it like a concealer. I switched to my Royal and Langnickel concealer brush and applied a small amount around my eye area and it really improved the appearance of my awful dark circles. The product is quite creamy but has quite a matte finish – I felt like I didn’t need to use as much powder to set it.

If you have read some of my other reviews, you will know that I have previously suffered from bad skin, whilst my complexion has improved a lot over the last six months or so, I still struggle sometimes with my chin area. So the real test for this foundation was if it could conceal the redness and blemishes that I suffer from. I decided the best way to do this was to take before and after photos to see if the coverage is really all it has been cracked up to be. Now I feel a bit self-conscious about these photos as it is not something that I really want the world to see, but if it helps someone else with skin that isn’t perfect then that’s fine by me.


No Make up - blemishes and redness on chin area
Please excuse the towel!!


Vichy Dermablend foundation after photo

As you can see in the after photo, the redness, pores and blemishes are much less visible and my skin tone looks even. I was thrilled with the result and I think that the level of coverage is great. I have worn this almost every day now since I bought it and my make up still looks good after a long say of work, my skin is less oily that it was before and I feel more confident. So in my books this is a winner and I will definitely repurchase when I run out.

If you are tempted to give Vichy Dermablend foundation a try, you can purchase it from Boots for £16 or from Feel Unique for £17.

Have you tried Vichy Dermablend before? What foundations to you recommend for high coverage?

W7 Showing Out Mascara review

W7 Showing Out Mascara
Last month my sister and I were wondering around our local outlet centre and one of the shops sells a wide range of discounted beauty products from brands such as W7, NYX, Butter London, YSL and lots more. So whenever we go shopping there we always pop in and treat ourselves to something new. The W7 stand really caught my eye and seeing as I hadn’t tried anything from there before I decided to pick up the Showing Out Mascara. I cant remember exactly how much I paid, but it was just a few pounds so I thought I’d give it a go.

W7 Showing Out Mascara close up
I like the packaging very much, the bright orange tube is great because it stands out when I am rummaging around in my make up bag whilst half asleep in the morning! The brush is  nice and thick and specially designed with a sphere of bristles on the end which is meant to help you reach the smaller, harder to reach lashes. Personally, I hate this shape, I found it quite clumsy to use and too big for reaching the tiny hairs in the corner of my eyes. 
The first time I opened the bottle, this ball of bristles caused a huge glob of mascara to fly out of the bottle and land on the carpet…not cool W7. Pretty much ruined my day and the carpet – thankfully this was at my parents house and they were replacing the carpet with wooden floorboards anyway (phew!). Unlike most mascaras, there isn’t really a mechanism that removes the excess mascara from the wand. So every time I remove the wand far too much mascara accumulates on the wand that must be wiped off before it can be applied. To me, this is a huge waste of product and if I had paid a lot more I’d be pretty annoyed! For a few pounds though I guess you can’t really complain too much.

W7 Showing Out Mascara wand close up

The formula itself is ok – my lashes looked thicker and longer than than the would be sans mascara but equally it is not the best mascara I have ever tried, my lashes didn’t look amazing, they just looked alight. I’d say this is the type of mascara I’d pick up for a festival to prevent a high end mascara being nicked from my tent, but to be honest, the messy globules of mascara flying everywhere wouldn’t be practical at all. So unfortunately, this isn’t something that I’d buy again, but I will probably use the remaining product occasionally to coat my lashes before nipping to the shops, or going to the gym.

If you do fancy trying W7’s Showing Out Mascara (please let me know how you get on if you do!), you can buy it from W7 for £4.95.

Would you recommend any W7 products? Have you tried the Showing Out mascara? What is the best mascara you have ever used?

One Lovely Blog Award

One Lovely Blogger Award

Woohoo! I have been nominated by the lovely Miranda
from Miranda Loves for the One Lovely Blog Award. Miranda has a gorgeous
blog layout and she posts regularly with wishlists, hauls and reviews, so you
should all check her blog out. I love these tags as it is quite a nice way to
share a little bit more about my self for those readers who are interested. But
it is actually really hard to think up facts about yourself!

So, here are the rules for the award:
 1) You must display the award logo at the
top of the post!
2) You must thank the person who nominated you and leave a link to their blog
in your post
3) You must add this set of rules to your post so that your nominees will know
what to do
4) You must add 7 facts about yourself into the post
5) You must nominate 15 other blogs and leave links to each of them in your
6) You must let the people who you have nominated know that they’ve been
7) You must follow back the person who nominated you on GFC and Bloglovin

Seven Facts about myself:

  1. As a child I believed that the hazard lights button
    in the car was a turbo button.
  2. I’m pretty terrible at looking after houseplants. We
    have been in the flat for a month and I have killed all the herbs in the window
    box and the pot plant my mum bought us has severely wilted… oops!
  3. I once met Jonathan Ross on holiday in Florida and
    he was wearing tartan trousers…
  4. I only own one blusher which I think in the beauty
    blogging world is pretty much a sin…don’t worry though I plan to invest in a
    couple more!
  5. I love dogs and we are so desperate to get a puppy
    but we work long hours so it isn’t the right time for us yet – boo!
  6. I studied English at university so I adore reading.
    I always carry my kindle in my handbag because you never know when you will
    have five minutes to quickly read a few pages.
  7. I do my own Shellac gel mani and pedis! My mum
    bought me the kit for my birthday last year and I taught myself how to properly apply them. 

Blogs I’m nominating
I have recently followed all of the bloggers above
after enjoying reading their blogs so I really recommend that you check them
bloggers would you nominate?

Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes review

Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes front cover

Sali Hughes is one of my favourite beauty writers, so when I heard that she was writing Pretty Honest, I was very excited. On the day of release I traipsed around town looking in book shops for a copy to no avail! I eventually managed to track down a copy in a small WHSmith store. It was the last copy left and it has a scuff on the mirror handle on the front cover, some black marks on the edges and some indentations to the pages. But it doesn’t matter because I got the last one!

Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes Brows

I know they say you should never judge a book by its cover, but the cover of Pretty Honest is beautifully simple. This is the type of book that was made to be displayed proudly on a coffee table. At the beginning of every chapter you will find a related photograph and quote which I have absolutely loved – The Jack Black quote above is probably my favourite!

Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes Basic Kit

The book is perfect for any woman, no matter what stage in life you are, you will find a whole host of topics including advice about acne, botox, wedding makeup and post-baby beauty. While not every chapter is relevant to me right now, this is something that I will refer to later in life.

Whenever Sali is discussing a type of product, she makes recommendations of a range of brands who offer wonderful products for every skin type and need. She also includes a mixture of high end and budget brands so the advice really caters for everyone.

Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes Beauty Icons

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and it has been in my handbag every day so that I can have a quick read whilst on the bus or during my lunch hour. Several of my colleagues at work have asked me about the book as my nose was buried in it every lunchtime for a week and now they are buying copies too.

Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes Beauty Resources

Whether you are brand new to skincare and makeup, or you are a pro beauty blogger, I think there is a lot to learn from this book. I have discovered exactly what I need for my skin type and colouring and what products I can chuck in the bin or save my money on – toner and eye cream, I’m looking at you! This is a wonderful and informative read and best of all because of Sali’s reputation as a beauty writer, I know that her advice is reliable and honest (hence the title!), so I cannot recommend this enough. You can get your copy from WHSmith or Waterstones for £22.

October Must Haves – Halloween special

Halloween party wishlist

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6

It’s time for my monthly Must Haves post  and as Halloween is just around the corner now and most of us will be throwing/attending parties or heading out in spooky fancy dress. So this month, I thought that I would put together a few items that I think are amazing additions to your Halloween outfit. Hope you enjoy!

I adore this dress! It absolutely screams sexy vampire to me, but you could use wear it as a naughty devil or glam witch outfit too. This is the kind of dress that you can carry on wearing after Halloween has long gone – I’m thinking Christmas party season or even Valentine’s day!

If ever there was a time for nail art, Halloween is it. But we are busy girls and not all of us have time time to literally watch paint dry. So for girls on the go, I really recommend stick on nails so all the hard work is done for you. They are easy to put on and you can literally do it 5 or 10 minutes before you head out the door. I love the design of these House of Holland nails and think they are a great addition to any fancy dress outfit.

Violent Lips The Leopard from Selfridges, £10

Halloween is the time to go absolutely wild with your makeup and what could be wilder than this fierce lip transfer?! If you don’t want to spend a fortune on fancy dress, then the lip transfers and some eyeliner whiskers can create an outfit in an instant.

A black lipstick is pretty much a Halloween essential, but there is no need to spend a fortune when every blogger’s favourite budget brand are offering up a suitable shade for just £1 – you really can’t go wrong.

Halloween Lips Clutch from ASOS, £20

I love this Lulu Guinness inspired clutch bag so much and for just £20 I think it is an absolute steal. This is the perfect accessory for vampire costumes.

If you don’t want to go all out, but want to add a touch of Halloween to your outfit, these River Island leggings are perfect. The spider web print actually glows in the dark which is pretty cool! Just a touch of spooky without going all in.

What will you be wearing for Halloween? Which of these would you most like to get your hands on!

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat review

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat
If you have been reading my blog recently, particularly my post reviewing the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo you will know that I suffer from oily, spot prone skin (lucky me!). I have had such a good experience with the three products from the range that when I spotted Effaclar Mat on the shelf in Boots I just had to give it a go.

I love the packaging of La Roche-Posay products, it is so clean and clinical looking it almost looks medicinal. However, unlike the rest of the collection, the tube has a matte finish to mirror the use of the product – it is details like this that I just swoon over! (I know I am sad!)
La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat is a sebo-regulating moisturiser, meaning that it controls the levels of sebum produced by the skin. Sebum is the proper name given to the oil in your skin, those like me with oily skin produce more sebum than those with dry skin. The moisturiser claims to be anti-shine and to reduce pore size.
La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat

I have been applying the moisturiser twice a day after cleansing including around the eye and neck area. The product feels very light which is preferable to me, I found because of this it sinks into the skin quickly. It is just the right level of hydrating for me. My skin feels plump and soft but not greasy and there is no sticky residue left behind.

I have found that my skin gets less oily throughout the day. Before using this cream I would need to blot a couple of times a day at least, but now I can get away with just blotting at lunchtime so I feel a lot more confident in myself knowing that my forehead isn’t glistening!

I can’t say that I have noticed that much of a difference in pore size, but I don’t really believe that any product can shrink them, it is just genetics. However my skin is looking clear and healthy with no signs of breakouts after three weeks of use so I am really pleased.

The La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat moisturiser is £14 for a 40ml tube in Boots (who are currently doing 3 for 2 on skincare GO GO GO!). Personally I am more than happy to pay this because I can see a difference in my skin so it is likely to be something that I will repurchase when I finish the tube.

What products do you recommend for oily skin?

200 follower giveaway!

This week Must Have Girl managed to reach 200 followers on Bloglovin, which I am thrilled with as I have only really seriously started blogging since August and despite having  large gap in September due to moving into my first flat with the boyfriend you have all stuck with me.

So to say a great big thank you to all those who have followed me and enjoy reading my posts I have decided to do a giveaway. I have recently reviewed the Sleek i-Divine Storm palette and was so impressed by how pigmented the shadows are, so the prize will be a Sleek i-Divine palette of your choice.

Ts & Cs

The giveaway is only open to those in the UK.
The first five entries are mandatory but the rest are all optional.
The giveaway will run until Wednesday, 12 November.

Good luck!

Sleek i-Divine Storm Palette review

Sleek i-Divine Storm Palette
I recently treated myself to the Sleek i-Divine Storm Palette whilst on a cheeky little shopping trip with my sister. I have been after one of their palettes for a long time and I simply fell in love with the gorgeous metallic shades and I know this palette will be a firm favourite through the autumn and winter, especially with Halloween and Christmas parties on the horizon.

The Storm palette contains 12 gorgeous shades, with 3 mattes and 9 metallics with beautiful shimmer particles. The shades are perfect for all occasions with the top row great for everyday looks and the bottom row perfect for creating a bold evening look.

Sleek i-Divine Storm Palette
The shadows are highly pigmented considering the price point and I think the colour pay-off is fantastic. I haven’t experienced any creasing and I’ve found them to be very long wearing which is great for nights out and us girls who are always on the go. My particular favourites are the metallic green (Storm Cloud) and blue (Electric Storm) which can be used for a great twist on the classic smokey eye.

Sleek i-Divine Storm Palette

The palette comes with a sponge applicator, which personally I hate! Each to their own though! I have been applying the shadows with my Royal and Langnickel brush set and I’ve found them really easy to blend out. However, I have experienced a little bit of fall out during the application, so I tend to do my eyes before by base when using these shades.

I really love how pigmented and beautiful these shades look so I’d really recommend the Sleek i-Divine Storm Palette for those who love their metallics. You can get yours from the Sleek website or from Superdrug for just £7.99 which I think for the quality, is a bargain!

Have you tried any of the Sleek palettes before?

Royal and Langnickel Guilty Pleasures Wrath Brush Set review

Royal and Langnickel Guilty Pleasures Wrath Brush Set

A couple of weekends ago I hopped on the train to London to attend Olympia Beauty, a fantastic beauty trade show held at Kensington Olympia. I was going to write a post all about it, however I stupidly forgot to take any pictures because I was too busy snapping up all the beauty bargains…oops!

One of the great deals that I took advantage of was this gorgeous Royal and Langnickel Guilty Pleasures Wrath brush set. I have seen reviews of the set on other blogs so when I saw them on offer I just had to whip my purse out and grab myself a set.

The set that I chose contains 12 different brushes as well as a carry case that can be used as two separate brush holders which is great for those who are beauty obsessed and always need storage solutions for the overflowing stash! The set comes in various colours all related to the seven deadly sins. I chose wrath purely because I wanted a black storage pot to match the decor in our bedroom, but they have some gorgeous pastels on offer, so there is a colour scheme for everyone!

The brushes the set contain are:

  • Powder
  • Stippler
  • Foundation
  • Contour
  • Concealer
  • Angle shader
  • Crease
  • Smudger
  • Line and smudge
  • Flat smudger
  • Angle brow

Royal and Langnickel Guilty Pleasures Wrath Brush Set

I have not tried every single brush as of yet but the ones I have tried have impressed me. I particularly like the eye brushes, with the crease brush being my favourite. It applies shadow beautifully and blends the colour well in seconds when applied in a sweeping motion around the eye socket. I love it!

I am also a fan of the concealer brush. I previously just used my fingers to apply my MAC Pro Longwear Concealer but the brush applies product very smoothly and doesn’t look cakey. I’m not usually a fan of flat foundation brushes, I am devoted to the much loved Real Techniques Expert Face Brush as it buffs my foundation in seamlessly, however, the Royal foundation brush did a great job of applying my foundation as did the stippling brush, Although I wish that the bristles were a little shorter!

There is one brush that I don’t really rate, the powder brush. Although it is probably the softest thing known to man! I found that it doesn’t particularly pick up product very well so I have been using it to buff off any excess powder/blush/bronzer instead.

The brushes are made of synthetic bristles and while I know some people prefer a natural brush, I find that synthetic is a lot easier to clean and they actually repel bacteria, perfect for those with spot prone skin, Plus they are also cruelty free which in my books is a definite plus.

While Royal and Langnickel brushes are available in the UK via their website and Amazon, this set is currently only available from their US site but the shipping charges are pretty pricey. I’m sure that as they were selling them at Olympia they will soon be available in the UK. I have emailed the brand, but I’m yet to hear back from them about where in the UK you can get hold of the brushes so I will be sure to update this post when I know more! At Olympia, the set cost me just £25 and it retails on the american site for $59.99 or $39.99 on Amazon.