Revlon Colorstay Moisture Stain in Barcelona Nights (photo heavy)

Posted by Lipglossiping On July - 22 - 2014

Perhaps it’s the OCD in me but I do so enjoy a themed collection.  A place for everything and everything in its place and all that.  No silly shade numbers o’ randomness that don’t mean anything to anyone.  Oh no! Revlon have got it very right with their geographically-themed latest product release.

The Revlon ColorStay Moisture Stain launch features a 12-strong collection of lip colours that embrace a gel-stain hybrid texture with a moisturising formula and a high-pigment finish.  The formula has been infused with Vitamin E and Aloe, those stalwart ingredients of the hydration team, making for comfortable day-long wear that leaves your lips feeling nourished.

Each shade claims its own playful colour personality, with shades named after some of the most iconic cities around the globe: Cannes Crush, Miami Fever, Rio Rush, and Parisian Passion to name but a few.

I’ve got my hands on the Hispanic delegate of the collection: Barcelona Nights – probably best described as a berry pink with slight purple undertones.

Revlon Moisture Stain in Barcelona Nights

Revlon Moisture Stain in Barcelona Nights (2)

Revlon Moisture Stain in Barcelona Nights (4)

The packaging is great, in all its chunky squared-off glory.  There’s nothing pretentious here, it’s simply solid and tactile in a spiky kind of way.  As you draw the applicator wand out of the tube, there’s a certain degree of resistance… the sort of pause that makes you worry the applicator will release from the bottle-neck with a pop, spraying you with lip stain – like a badly-behaved yoghurt pot.  Infact, I’m still not convinced that it won’t, so take care when wriggling the wand free from its constraints.

Having said that, the tight-fit ensures that your applicator isn’t drowned in lip gloop – infact, it dispenses just about the perfect amount onto the tip of the sponge.

Revlon Moisture Stain in Barcelona Nights (3)

Revlon Moisture Stain in Barcelona Nights (5)

The shade is vibrant and semi-sheer (though buildable), allowing the natural texture of your lip to show through.  Application is smooth, definitely more like a lipgloss than a liquid lipstick.  It feels a touch “plasticky” when first applied but it’s light enough in texture, thankfully, not to bother me.

I suffer from a visible “line” where product often refuses to adhere toward the inner reaches of my bottom lip… and I experienced it with this, at least… until the product had been given a few moments to fuse/melt from the warmth of my lips.  You need to allow this for a more even finish.

Most importantly, there is no stickiness.  None, or should I say nada.

Revlon Moisture Stain in Barcelona Nights (6)

Wear was fine, not because it was magnificently lingering but because as the colour faded, the stain remained.  For my personal tastes, it’s a little more glossy than I like to wear so I tend to apply, then blot.  Once.  This removes the “slippy” feeling – which is one that I can’t stand and the main reason for my lipgloss aversion – without removing the colour.

Overall, I’ve found it an easy-to-wear, easy-to-apply product… haven’t we all got room for one of those in our makeup bags?

The Revlon Colorstay Moisture Stains are due to launch next month, priced at £7.99 each and available from Boots and Superdrug

* press sample

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Big Lip Love! RMK W Crayon & Gloss Lips in 01 Cherry Red

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 1 - 2014

Do you ever make snap judgements about products only to be proven very, very wrong?  I don’t mind admitting that I do… and in this case, I got one hell of a shock when the product put me firmly in my place.

The RMK W Crayon & Gloss Lips is a new release from the Japanese beauty brand and features a duo crayon/gloss system designed to impart big colour and shine.  When it comes to lips, I don’t tend to expect much in the way of pigment from Asian brands… my past purchases have taught me that it’s all about the sheer juiciness and moisturising formulas.

Generalising much, I know… but this is just what I have come to expect.

RMK W Crayon and Gloss Lips 01

ignore the foundation, that’s coming in a later review!

The crayon end of the wand did two things to surprise me.

First of all, it dragged… it dragged across my lips like a dog not wanting to be taken for a walk.  It feels hard, a little waxy and not what I was expecting.  To be fair, this did mean that I could achieve a great, sharp line around the edge of my lips but I wasn’t impressed.

The firm texture meant that it took a fair amount of “colouring in” before my entire lip area had been filled and I couldn’t smoosh my lips together to spread the pigment, the formula just wasn’t creamy enough.  This does mean that it is however, extremely long-lasting.

The second surprise came from the amount of pigment the crayon imparted.  We’re talking serious colour.  Bold, opaque and a little startling.  In other words, fabulous.

So there I am… crayon on, thoughts a little jumbled at this point.

RMK W Crayon and Gloss Lips 01 3

RMK W Crayon and Gloss Lips 01 2

Ahh, the gloss end of the equation.  I hate gloss.  You know I hate gloss, we all know that yes… Lip”gloss”iping hates gloss.

Prior to actually trying the W Crayon & Gloss Lips out in person, I did toy with the idea that I’d probably just wear the crayon alone… but once it’s applied, it needs something more.  It just looks unfinished with the crayon worn alone on the lips.

And so I dived into the gloss section of the tube, pulling out the silicone spatula-esque applicator and layering a coat of the glitter-filled semi-transparent gloop across my lips.

RMK W Crayon and Gloss Lips 01 Swatch

“Oh!”

“It looks nice!”

Really nice!

The truth is that I just didn’t expect it to look like the perfect combination between pigmented AND juicy.  It didn’t expect it to plump and fill my lips to the point where I found it tricky to resist snogging myself in the mirror.

The gloss is completely non-sticky (trust me, I’m a massive fusspot) and refreshingly light on the lips.  It doesn’t try to migrate or pool unattractively, waiting for me to open my mouth and share strings of globby gloss with the world.  It just sits gently across the surface, sparkling away and making the crayon underneath feel far more comfortable than it did prior to the partnership.

RMK W Crayon and Gloss Lips 01 FOTD

RMK W Crayon and Gloss Lips 01 Lips

Transfer is a bitch, so be aware… although my teeth were unaffected, my glass and cup both took a shocking hit.  Having said that, there’s so much pigment in the product that the transfer had no impact on how it looked on my lips.

After around 45-minutes, the shine gradually dissipates and it (to my eye) looks even better.  It loses the screamy “look at me” shine but retains the juiciness, appearing much like a well-formulated creamy lipstick.  Roll forward a couple of hours and you can just start to feel a little dryness creeping through from the crayon.  As your lips press together, there’s more texture and at this point, it would be a good idea to give your pout a quick blot with tissue or reapply another layer of gloss.

It’s not completely low-maintenance but for such a bold shade, that undercoat of crayon sticks like you-know-what to the proverbial blanket, making touch-ups with the gloss a lot less hassle than re-lining your lips or dealing with an ugly ring of colour around the lip-line.

Well, there you have it.  Massive, big and completely unexpected love from me for this unassuming tube of lip colour.

RMK W Crayon & Gloss Lips in 01 Cherry Red is priced at £22 and available in 5 limited-edition, seasonal shades.  You can find them online in the UK from BeautyBay.com, LookFantastic.com and instore at Selfridges!

* press sample

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Go #RetroGlam with Rimmel London! #ModMonday (Sponsored)

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 26 - 2014

If you could take just one period from history and transplant its looks, style, and fashion into this century… you’d be hard-pushed to pick a better era than the 1960s.  The decade thrived off a dynamism that transformed a post-war world, thrusting it into the modern age.  From space exploration to consumerism, civil rights to music… the buzz word was progress, and at a breakneck pace.

Nowhere was this better represented than in the world of beauty and fashion.  Many young women finally had access to a disposable income, and what better to do with it than spend it on pretty new things?

Rimmel London have released the new ScandalEyes Retro Mania Collection, a fun nod to the decade of change with a monochrome theme, featuring some of the must-have tools of the decade, absolutely necessary to perfect the mod style!

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Focusing on the eyes as the main component in recreating the look of the era (lips were generally pale and frosty or completely blanked out with concealer), Rimmel London have released the following products:

•  Rimmel London ScandalEyes RetroGlam Mascara
•  ScandalEyes Thick & Thin Eyeliner
•  ScandalEyes Eye Shadow Paint in Mercury Silver, Rich Russet, and Golden Bronze
•  ScandalEyes Eye Shadow Stick in Witness White, Blackmail, and Bulletproof Beige

The ScandalEyes RetroGlam Mascara comes complete with an hourglass-shaped wand to capture all lashes from the innermost to the outermost corners, plumping and volumising as you comb the brush through from root to tip.  Whether you lust after Twiggy-esque lash separation or Edie Sedgwick’s luscious volume, the inky-black formula promises to deliver an “eyeconic” 60s look.

Georgia May Jagger presents as the face of the new collection with a look that takes the 60s styling to the max, you can view some of the brand’s modcasts online from their Tumblr page.  I’ve embedded one of the campaign videos below which shows some of the main pieces of the collection in action:

This month, the brand are running a weekly #modmonday contest that you can enter by sharing your retro look with @RimmelLondonUS on Twitter, Instagram or Tumblr – and this week – you even stand a chance at winning an authentic Lambretta scooter!

I had a go at creating a wearable 60s look, understating the lips and cheeks whilst putting full attention on the eyes.

Lining the lower lashline with the new RetroGlam Eye Shadow Stick in Witness White drew maximum attention to the contrasting black of the ScandalEyes RetroGlam Mascara and ScandalEyes Thick & Thin Eyeliner.  I wanted my look to be a more work-friendly Anna Karina than the dramatic and editorial style of Peggy Moffit!

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For more ideas and inspiration on how to recreate your own retro glam look, check out the official Rimmel London Retro Glam Page.

* This post has been sponsored by Rimmel London

When good hormones go bad. My quest to smell like a man!

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 18 - 2013

As you may have guessed from the title, I’m totally blaming the pregnancy hormones for this one.  Whether or not they are actually culpable remains to be seen but it feels slightly less shameful to rest the responsibility upon my ever-increasing levels of hormonal angst.

Some women eat coal, crave the taste of rubber and leather… me?  Well, I just want to smell like all of those things instead.  You can keep your girly florals, sweet fruits, and vomit-worthy vanillas… give me all of the MAN SCENTS.

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Were my pockets big enough, I’d carry the above candles around with me 24/7, pausing regularly for a sniff before continuing on my way.  My Jonathan Ward Woodstock candle, which I picked up whilst scouring the shelves at T.K. Maxx is the least masculine of the trio and perfect for the season, reminding me of a dampened but very-much-alive forest floor… woody and aromatic.

My Mum picked up the Rigaud Cuir de Kyara candle for me after spotting it nestled on a tabletop at her local Emmaus in France.  She said that the smell of pure, unadulterated leather “nearly knocked her head off” and thus, knew instantly that I would fall in love with it.  She was right.  It’s a blinder and I’m now obsessed with finding other candles from this Parisian brand.

Finally, and thanks to a Zuneta/Amazon bargain, I’m pleased to finally be able to add this Malin + Goetz Vetiver candle to my collection!  I haven’t been able to walk past the display of M+G candles in Liberty for ages without stopping to sniff this one in all its earthy, woody and downright sexy glory.

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But my obsession with man-scent doesn’t just stop at candles.  Oh no!  It gets far more serious…

I bought L’Artisan Parfumeur’s Tea for Two during their Summer sale a couple of years ago and it was love at first sniff but recently, I just can’t get enough of it and have upgraded to a massive 100ml bottle in order to get my fix.  The perfect blend of smoky embers, honeyed tobacco and warming ginger to keep all thoughts of frostiness at bay this Winter.

Ahhh, Molton Brown… I remember when I first came across your distinctively delicious Re-Charge Black Pepper scent (now called black peppercorn) a few years ago whilst staying at a hotel in Basel.  To this day, I kick myself for being good and not stealing all the hotel toiletries, it just felt too naughty to take the ones that I hadn’t actually opened to use during my stay!  Instead, I scoop up other people’s spoils on eBay and long for the candle version!

My final fragrant craving is one that Mr. L is less than impressed with.  He can cope with sharing most of his scents with me, infact… many times, we purchase a fragrance under the certain knowledge that we’re doing so in order to share the bottle (it makes a £70 splurge so much more palatable split two ways).  My desires to wear his smells-just-like-a-freshly-wet-shaved-man Floris Santal*, however, are falling on deaf ears.  I’ve been allowed a quick spritz, twice.  Only twice.  I actually think that might constitute domestic abuse.

Are there any “boy” scents that drive you wild?  And, question is… are you wild enough to wear them?

* press sample

Rant. When brands go off-piste!

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 5 - 2013

Radox. What are you playing at?

When I think of you, I think of relaxing in a blue-hued bath of wonder.  Sinking into realms of relaxation that I thought only existed in my pre-child lifetime. You don’t give me spendy guilts when I pop into Boots for a top-up and you don’t make me weep with sorrow when I discover that Mr. L has raided my bathroom cabinet.

So, what’s all this new nonsense about?

radox-revive-energise-uplift

Don’t you dare try to revive, energise or uplift me! That’s not what I come to you for.

You might think that you need to compete with all those shower and bath products that set your sensitive bits alight and leave you feeling like you’ve been dragged through a polo mint backwards, but you don’t.

You’re perfect just the way you are.

However, if you do get a moment… how about more bath salts in some new and ever more relaxing scents and shades. Bath salts are set for a BIG come back don’tchano?

Radox. They’ve gone all modern n’ stuff with this new Citrus range.  £2.15 ish a bottle… but if I see you buying one, I’ll disown you.

Tried & Tested: Red Carpet Manicure vs. Sensationail

Posted by Lipglossiping On July - 25 - 2013

The lure of a manicure that delivers long-lasting wear, minimal fuss, and one that can be done in the comfort of your own home is a strong pull.  Once upon a time, the only way we could have achieved something like this would have been to visit our nearest nail technician for acrylics and gel overlays (I used to love Bio-Sculpture).

Nowadays technologies have moved on and things have become a lot let fussy since the advent of Shellac and Gellish-type polishes… and even more so, now that we can use similar UV-cured polish technology at home!

I’m not a newbie to at-home gel polish systems, having previously trialled and reviewed Red Carpet Manicure’s major competitor in the UK market: Sensationail, infact… I’m in a priviliged position where I’m able to deduce any differences between the two systems.  So, without further ado, let’s get down to it.

Red Carpet Manicure_1

Red Carpet Manicure

The first point to note between the two at-home nail systems is that of the two… the Sensationail Kit is slightly cheaper at £60, compared to the Red Carpet Manicure Starter Kit at £65.

The Red Carpet Manicure kit contains pretty much the same product as the Sensational in terms of: prepping products, base coat, colour, top coat… the systems both work in a similar way when it comes to application and use.  The major difference between the two kits is the lamp.

Sensationail’s kit comes with a “pro” lamp as standard.  In this instance, you can take that to mean… a lamp with a timer.  The Sensationail lamp cuts out after 1-minute and “chirps” after 30-seconds.  Red Carpet Manicure’s smaller footprint lamp… doesn’t do this, you need a clock handy.  No real problem for those of us with our smartphones glued to our fingers anyway but curing time is also longer after each step with the Red Carpet Manicure system.

Red Carpet Manicure_2

Red Carpet Manicure

In terms of value for money… the Red Carpet Manicure system provides you with larger-sized bottles in your starter kit.  Over double the amount of base/top coat, something that is fundamental to the system working… and generous quantities of nail cleanse and remover.  Sensationail’s offering, at around 3.6ml is pretty stingy… it won’t be long before you’re buying topups to be fair.

Back to the lamps for a moment… although the Red Carpet Manicure’s lamp has the convenience of being able to be powered by USB (laptop powered nails yeahh!!), I did find the design a little awkward.  My longest, middle finder had to contort in order to fit under the UV bulbs.  It’s no biggie… you don’t have to keep your hands locked in position for hours but it’s worth mentioning as a point of difference.  Red Carpet Manicure also do a less-portable lamp (with timer) in one of their more expensive kits.

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What’s included in the Red Carpet Manicure kit

Lamps compared, quantity of product and price compared… things are working out to be pretty even between the two contenders for the at-home manicure crown.  But wait… because I’m about to blow this thing apart.  The Red Carpet Manicure system is easier to apply on the nail than the Sensationail kit.  And for a novice, this is an important distinction.

In my previous Sensationail review, I complained about the shoddy packaging of the Sensationail bottles… and it’s only after using superior packaging that I can appreciate how much more smoothly the product applies.  Now, don’t get me wrong… I got on “ok” with the Sensationail during application, a little pooling at the cuticles that I was quick to clean up… but…

The Red Carpet Manicure products apply like a dream.  The brushes are cut more carefully and I found it remarkably easy to apply each layer thinly.  Don’t underestimate the importance of applying this type of gel system in super-thin layers.  Thickly-cured gel on your nails is u.g.l.y.

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Applying the base coat

The polish stays complete wet and workable right up until the moment you begin to cure it, leaving you ample time to push the product around the nail… capping the tips, keep the polish clear of the cuticles.  It’s almost therapeutic.

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Applying the colour

You can see my funny finger contortion in the picture below… this was taken mid-cure.  You can also see how teeny-tiny the lamp is – it looks like a stapler!  Two minutes later and my colour was cured and ready for a top-coat.  All in all, it took around 25 minutes to complete a full manicure.

Looking back, I see that this is less time than it took to complete with the Sensationail kit.  Considering curing times are slower with this kit, I’m surprised at the difference.  I can only put it down to the speed at which I was able to apply the product to the nail thanks to easier application.

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The curing process

Ta-da!  Here’s how the finished manicure looked.  My one complaint is that it was a little sheerer than I would have liked after two coats as my nail-line is still visible but in all honesty that’s my fault.  I was asked to choose a colour to receive with my kit and I didn’t look closely enough at the Pinterest photos linked on their colour range page (nice touch btw) that would have given me a better idea!

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The finished result

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The finished result

And so… manicure down… how did it last?

Well, really well actually!  I didn’t experience any of the “lifting” that I occassionally experience with the Sensationail kit and after 12-days (see picture below, please excuse the eczema), you’ll see that there’s no chipping of the nails.  The same does apply to all the other nails, I promise – I just didn’t think when I took the photo that you might want to see all of them, sorry!

By the way, check out my amazing nail growth!  I’m putting that down to Dr. Lewinn’s Renunail (review coming soon, it’s taken me a very long time to discover what it actually does!)

Removal was easy… I previously complained about the removal for the Sensationail system but I got the hang of it in the end.  Both are very similar… you simply need to buff the surface of the nail first, do the tin-foil trick (with pure acetone) and scrape off any remnants.  Give it 10-minutes with the foil on your fingertips first.  I will say however, that I didn’t need to buff my natural nail after removal with the Red Carpet Manicure kit… there were no remnants at all.

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…and 12 days later!

So… all being said and done… yes, I do have a clear favourite out of the two systems.  The Red Carpet Manicure performs better for me across all levels except one, I’m not a fan of the ultra-portable lamp.  But I will happily trade a contorted finger for easier application and a better shot at being able to create some funky nail art with the system(!), greater value-for-money, and a wider range of colours.

The Red Carpet Manicure Starter Kit* is available to buy online from redcarpetmanicure.co.uk, priced at £65.00

* press sample

* please find my Sensationail reviews here and here.

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fiber Brush Collection

Posted by Lipglossiping On June - 20 - 2013

Building upon her inexpensively-priced-but-well-crafted brush empire, Samantha Chapman of Pixiwoo fame has released another set of brushes to sit alongside her core collections, albeit for a limited time only.  The Real Techniques Duo-Fiber Brush Collection* was launched last month and began to hit our shores a few weeks ago.

Reviews have been almost overwhelmingly positive for this trio of brushes and I was keen to cast my eye over the set to appease my own curiosity of whether they were worth the hype.

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 1

The brushes, as the name might suggest, are dual-fibred.  Both fibres used in the construction are taklon, therefore synthetic and 100% cruelty-free.  There are three brushes in the collection and each is labelled along the handle, clearly describing its purpose.

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 2

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 3

The largest of the three brushes is the Duo-Fiber Face Brush.  Of the three, this is the most flexible and feels the least densely-packed (relative to size).  The layering of fibres in such a loose manner means that this brush is ideal for a light-coating of powder to set your makeup.  You’d be hard-pushed to pack on the product with this tool in your hand and for this purpose, it’s pretty much perfect.

Although the website states that all brushes can be used with cream and liquid products… I don’t think there would be much point in using this brush for anything other than powder products.  It would be like buying a pair of nail scissors and using them to cut your fringe.  Technically, you could do it… but why would you want to waste the engineering?

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 4

The second brush in the set, the Duo-Fiber Contour Brush is slightly more rigid than the face brush.  The fibres feel a little springier, with more resistance under pressure.  This gives the brush a little more strength to direct the product being applied and additional control when it comes to blending for a seamless finish.  Ultimately, this is the brush you’ll want to be using this Summer for applying your bronzer and contour shades.  A little more precision but applied with an equally light hand.

Despite being somewhat stiffer than the face brush, I’m still not sold on using it for cream products… I just have other brushes (even from this line) that I prefer to use with liquids and creams.

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 5

The smallest brush in the set is the Duo-Fiber Eye Brush, and for me, this one is an outright disappointment.  I simply do not find the brush comfortable to use in the delicate eye-area.  The fibres are sharp, scratchy and even with the lightest of touches, too harsh for blending out colour across my eye socket.  At a push, it works ok for under-eye concealer but ultimately, I will pass over this brush daily in favour of a softer brush.

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 6

If you use a lot of powder products, I’d say that you would benefit greatly from purchasing this collection… the Face brush is unlike any other I own for creating a ultra-light finish.  I prefer to use cream products on my cheeks when it comes to blush and bronzer so I’m a little torn on the contour brush… at the bargainous price that this set retails for, I’d lean toward saying that it wouldn’t hurt to own it.

The eye brush isn’t worth the space in my brush holder (imo).  Not that there is any space.

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 7

Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fibre Brushes Fiber Review 8

The set hasn’t blown me away.  Not in the same way that the Core Collection did back in 2011 (I still use the Buffing Brush daily) and please don’t assume that just because they’re dual-fibre brushes, you’ll get something comparable to MAC’s legendary 187 at a cheaper price point… these aren’t a set of stippling brushes, they’re far more specific in their use helping you to create softly layered-looks and hone your application skills with a lighter-touch.

For a more multi-purpose duo-fibre brush you’d need something like the Real Techniques highly-regarded Stippling Brush instead.

As far as craftsmanship goes, other than my issue with the scratchiness of the eye brush… overall, the quality is great.  There’s no horrible chemical stink to the fibres, the ferrules are solidly formed and the taklon appears to be well-clamped into the handles.  Although the bottoms of the brushes are flat, they don’t offer the greatest stability on their ends… something to remember if you have a white carpet.

The Real Techniques Limited Edition Duo-Fiber Brush Collection is available to buy online from Cloud10Beauty.com or instore at Boots, priced at £23.99

* press sample

Why I don’t like Rimmel Apocalips…

Posted by Lipglossiping On June - 3 - 2013

So, Rimmel… and their “apocaliptic” hybrid gloss/lipstick.  Available in eight shades of lip-smacking colour from vampy plum through to pale nude, has been setting the blogging world alight from day one.  Except, I can’t for the life of me work out why.

First things first, they smell bad.  I’m not the kind of blogger that harps on about scented products being the root of all evil, I couldn’t normally give a chuff about scented/flavoured products but these are so horribly synthetic, I find them almost offensive.  Smell and taste are so closely linked, that if something smells bad… it often tastes bad too and I just don’t want this genetically-modified Jolly Rancher crap on my lips with it’s faux fruit salad gooeyness mere centimeters from my nostrils.

rimmel-apocalips-celestial

When it comes to application, the wand – complete with product dip/well – doesn’t work properly.  There’s no real give to the sponge, the product contained within the well is staying there.  For all eternity.  It’s not coating your lips, you’re just double dipping it back into the container each time you use it.  Give it up.

When I headed down to Boots, finally giving into the hype I was reading everywhere, I umm’ed and ahh’ed over the shades… in the end, I settled for Celestial, and the colour is indeed very, very, pretty.  That neutral kind of pink that goes with everything… looking good on practically every skin-tone.  But my love for the shade just cannot overcome.  Let me tell you what else I hate about this product.

It feels heavy on the lips.  Like tar.  Like a new kind of tar that has been created from lead.  Spread over my lips and left to bake in the sun.  It’s 2013, lip products don’t feel like this anymore.  I crave lightweight textures that deliver strong pigment without making me feel like my lips have been glued together with eye bogies.  And because the product just kinda sits there… it travels.  Within the hour, I experienced the kind of feathering you’d expect from a siren-red lipstick that had been applied with a trowel.

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At least you’d think with that kind of “creamy” coverage, your lips would stay well-nourished underneath?  No.  I found the formula drying and unforgiving to my “not even very dry” lips.  The product settled in the furrows and felt less and less comfortable with every passing minute.

And so, for its parting demonstration… did it stay on for long?  No… it lasted no more than a couple of hours before wearing away without leaving even a hint of a stain to see me through the afternoon.

I have basically been violated by a lipstick.  And that my friends, is a hugely disappointing sensation.

Rimmel Apocalips are priced at £4.49 each and are available to buy instore or online from boots.com, superdrug.com, and asos.com

Eat it or apply it? Products that smell too good to wear!

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 30 - 2013

When it comes to enticing us into a purchase, beauty brands fully understand the power of gluttony. When was the last time you bought a shower gel from a supermarket without giving it a good sniff first?

Foody smells in beauty products have always been one of the most popular experience-enhancers available to the industry and I’ve been trawling my bathroom cabinet in the quest to find some of the most deliciously scented products around.

Things are about to get tasty!

gourmand scented products

Milkshake Conditioning Whipped Cream* even sounds completely edible!  This tasty product from Milk_Shake contains some great natural ingredients, including a milk protein that promises to leave your hair soft, shiny and thoroughly swishable.  But the best thing about it?  It smells like a bonafide strawberry milkshake.  Make no mistake, you won’t know whether to stick a straw in it and lap it up or smoothe it through the ends of your locks.  £14.79, www.specialisthairsupplies.co.uk

gourmand scented products1

Radox Berry Burst Shower Cream is a fruity reinvention from a high-street classic.  Packaged rather snazzily in hot pink, you won’t miss this in the back of your bathroom cabinet.  The scent reminds me of a cross between Starburst (I nearly said Opal Fruits – I AM OLD ALRIGHT?) and a fruit salad, ensuring that the blend between completely synthetic and somewhat natural is fairly well balanced.  The scent doesn’t last long on the skin but the cream itself is pretty moisturising for an el-cheapo! £1.99, www.boots.com

gourmand scented products2

Who thought that Roger & Gallet was the kind of brand you’d buy your Nan for Christmas?  Yeah, me too.  But things are getting modern with the Roger & Gallet Fleur de Figuier* range and this Body Lotion punches well above its weight with a tantalizing blend of: mandarin, grapefruit, fig pulp, and musk.  Still not convinced… how about when I reveal the little-know-fact that the fragrance for this new range has been created by none other than fragrance maestro Francis Kurkdjian.  Got your attention now haven’t I?  Seriously.  Lap this beauty up.  £12.50, www.marksandspencer.com

gourmand scented products3

Another super-cheapy here in the form of Lidl’s very own Cien Nail Polish Remover, oh the glamour!  I’m not sure we’re supposed to be sniffing our nail polish removers (pack it in at once!) but this bargain-hunter’s dream purchase puts me in mind of a bakewell tart with its almondy-goodness.  It’s a pretty decent nail polish remover too!  Also… it’s got that pro-dispenser pump thing going on up top, and anything that makes removing your nail polish just a weeny bit more fun is ALL good in my books.  £1.49, Lidl

gourmand scented products4

Finally, what else would you expect from a brand named Fudge than some foody-related shenanigans?  Fudge were one of the first hair brands I reviewed on this here blog so I’m pleased to be adding the Fudge Urban Iced Coconut Cocktail Hair Spray* to my list of tempting treats.  It makes sense for hair spray (which is notoriously noxious) to be made more pleasing to the senses and I’m delighted to report that Fudge have done the business nicely with this offering.  A mega-strong hold and lasting scent in a compact can ensures that my hair will be smelling delicious for the foreseeable!  £4.99 (currently £2.99), www.superdrug.com

What are your favourite foody-scented products at the moment?

* press samples

I may not be the internet’s biggest fan of the Rimmel Lasting Finish “Kate” lipsticks… but don’t let my thoughts stand in the way of a good bargain, hell… I might even give them another try myself at this price.

What price?  Well, they’re priced at £5.49 each in Boots and Superdrug, so…

How does £1.99-a-piece sound?

rimmel-lasting-finish-kate-bargain

Unhelpfully, there’s not much going on in the way of swatches but that’s nothing a good Google can’t fix.  Here are links to a few of them, via one of my fav lip-swatcherers: beautyswatch1, beautyswatch2, beautyswatch.

Are any of these catching your eye?  I can’t help but admit that I’m tempted by “04″, not that I should be… what with it finally being Spring n’all.

European ladies can also join in the fun with fairly-priced international shipping.  Who said Sundays are boring?

Rimmel Lasting Finish “Kate” Lipsticks are currently priced at £1.99 each, online from Fragrance Direct.  Tempted?

* don’t forget that Fragrance Direct also have the rather brilliantly-priced Dainty Doll leftovers up for grabs too (go for the blushers, gooo for the blushers!!)

Red Lip Series: Rimmel Kate Moss Matte Lipstick #107 (Wine)

Posted by Lipglossiping On January - 19 - 2013

Wine is totally the new red. Or has it always been red?  Either way, in terms of the shade that’s been taking over my collection this winter, I’m definitely leaning more toward the merlot than the pillar-box.

Rimmel’s Kate Moss Matte Lipstick in #107 has been a blogger favourite for a couple of months now, the colour is fabulous… the formula not quite so amazing but acceptable for the price I guess.  I think that you can always tell a slightly draggy lipstick by looking at the tip of a used bullet.  You can usually see lip streaks and a little bit of graininess in the wax, see below…

Red Lip Series: Rimmel Kate Moss Matte Lipstick #107 (Wine)

I’m not sure that I’d repurchase any more from the range, they’re just a little bit too much like hard work on the lips.  The best way I can describe the formula is thus: you paint on a swipe across the bottom lip, smush your lips together and the line doesn’t budge… there’s just no glide at all.  You have to paint the whole lip, from the bullet… being extra careful around the lip-line.  This also means that it sticks pretty well but when it does fade, it does so unflatteringly, leaving a very prominent outer ring.

I know that there are a heap of raves all over the web… but I honestly feel that Rimmel could do better on the formula, it’s very “5 years ago”.  Mmattes don’t need to feel like mattes anymore, that’s one thing that 2012 has taught me.

Shame it didn’t teach me to stop buying lipsticks.

Red Lip Series: Rimmel Kate Moss Matte Lipstick #107 (Wine)

Rimmel Kate Moss Matte Lipstick #107 is priced at £5.49 and available to buy instore and online from Boots.com

Have Royal & Langnickel ushered in a [R]evolution in makeup brushes?

Posted by Lipglossiping On December - 10 - 2012

It’s taken me a while to come to terms with Royal & Langnickel as a makeup brush manufacturer, as opposed to an artist’s brush manufacturer.  I didn’t do Art in school or college, but my best friend did and she used to drag me around all the independent art and craft shops in the area to pick up supplies… it’s a name that, for me, has always been synonymous with watercolours, oils, and acrylics.  But things have changed and today, Royal & Langnickel carry more than 12 lines of beauty brushes and accessories, a fact which cements the brand as one of the market leaders in the manufacture of brushes and accessories… for any application.

They’ve recently introduced a new line to their range: [R]evolution – a 32-piece collection created under the watchful eye of Emmy award-winning makeup artist, Kevin James Bennett.  The collection features synthetic-fibred brushes which claim to pick up powder products equally as efficiently as their natural-haired counterparts thanks to technologically advanced filaments which mimic the exterior cuticle of natural hair fibres.  Because of their man-made, inorganic properties, these brushes claim to be more resistant to bacteria, stronger, longer-lasting, and easier to clean.

I’ve been trialling some of the brushes from the [R}evolution Premiere Pro Set* which is available to buy online, read on for some photographs and thoughts on how they're performing...

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

BX-10 (SM Powder), BX-30 (Kabuki Brush), BX-50 (Flat Concealer), BX-55 (Pointed Foundation), BX-60 (Pointed Concealer)

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

BX-70 (LG Flat Eye Fluff), BX-80 (Detail), BX-90 (Crease), BX-95 (LG Smudger), BX-110 (Flat Liner)

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

BX-125 (Square Lip), BX-135 (Brow/Spoolie Dual)

I've been trialling these over the last month, and have found them to withstand daily wear and tear without any issue - the eye brushes hold their shape particularly well after washing, and spot-clean more efficiently with a touch of alcohol.  I'm enjoying the peace of mind knowing that approaching these fibres with solvents is not going to shorten their lifespan.

In terms of use, they work efficiently - although some don't feel as soft as I'd like... particularly BX-10, the SM Powder brush - though to be fair, I'm making a direct comparison with my most-used powder brush, which is squirrel hair - renowned to be the softest (though importantly, not cruelty free) hair for brushes.

Before using the [R]evolution brushes, you’ll want to wash them.  Not only for hygiene’s sake (they have come from a factory after-all) but also because they’re a bit smelly – they have that synthetic, factory glue(?) smell.  Thankfully, this dissipates immediately.  I experienced no shedding, not even on the largest brushes and during washing – all brushes rinsed cleanly.

On close inspection the brushes are physically well-made – there is no glue residue seeping out from under the ferrules, the handles are solid with a non-slip rubber coating, and the fibres are well-cut.  Despite the handles having flat bases, only the largest will stand up vertically without toppling over.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

The BX-10 SM. Powder (£31.99) is slightly smaller than a traditional powder brush, allowing for precision application of powder to areas that you need it most.  It works well at picking up even the finest of silica powders for dusting the t-zone and the domed head is well-shaped to allow a smooth rolling motion during application.  Not quite as soft as I’d like but holds its shape well during washing and doesn’t shed.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

The BX-30 Kabuki Brush (£23.99) is the brush in the collection that I could see myself owning in multiple quantites!  Designed for compact combination blush and contour application, I’m loving this for liquid foundation AND cream blush.  Again, it’s not super-soft but isn’t at all scratchy.  The head is densely packed and really works well to buff product into the skin, leaving just the right quantity behind.  Highly recommended.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

I’m not used to pointed brushes and BX-55 Pointed Foundation (£22.39) is proving to be something of an enigma.  As a general consumer, rather than makeup artist (with a need for true precision), I find it a little too small for a full-face of foundation.  Instead, I’ve been using it to blend concealer as the sharply tapered fibres conform excellently to facial contours, especially around the nose.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

The BX-60 Pointed Concealer (£11.19), is once again, for precision work.  This time, for blending and concealer application – it’s roughly half the size of the BX-55 and feels less densely-packed, making it suitable to use on areas you want only the lightest touch.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

The BX-50 Flat Concealer (£7.99) is the more typical concealer application brush with a flat head and long fibres.  It works well to conceal around the lip area, and I’ve been reaching for it often to tidy up the vampier lip shades that I’ve been wearing this season.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

The BX-70 LG Flat Eye Fluff (£11.19) is one of those “what the hell do I do with this?” brushes.  At least, for non-professionals like me.  A little research later and I diccovered that the flat edge makes it perfect for highlighting under the brow bone.  It’s like a revelation to me!  It’s like the brush I never knew I needed, and now that I have it – I’m not giving it up.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

The BX-80 Detail (£10.39) is more your traditional eyeshadow fluff brush, great for general application although this one is around half the size of usual fluff brushes, making it great for precision work in the outer and inner corners.  Alternatively, if you don’t have much lid space (like me), you’ll be pleased to use this in place of other eyeshadow brushes which may often feel simply too big.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

I find the BX-90 Crease brush (£9.59) a little too big for blending along my socket.  It’s beautifully tapered and sharply cut with nice flexibility but it’s just too large.  It does make quick work of the job though!

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

The BX-95 LG Smudger (£7.19) has become one of my favourites, it works beautifully for application along the lower lash-line, smudging kohl along the upper lash-line and precision application in the inner-corner.  It’s too stiff for blending, so I wouldn’t recommend using it on the outer corner but it’s one of those workhorse brushes that you’ll reach for more than once whilst putting on your makeup.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

I’m afraid that I don’t use gel liners, so the BX-110 Flat Liner (£7.19) didn’t get much of a work out!  I attempted to use it once as a “push” brush with my Laura Mercier Cake Eyeliner but I felt that it gave me a line that was a little too thick for traditional tight-lining.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

I’m sad to say that I didn’t get on with this brush at all.  The BX-125 Square Lip (£6.39) is a brush that, in theory, should be great for precision application of bolder colours.  I just couldn’t get any love from this brush and found that I had much more success with my shorter-handled “cat tongue” lip brushes, especially for bolder colours.

Royal & Langnickel Revolution Brushes Review

If I needed more than one Brow/Spoolie brush in my collection, I’d have two of these BX-135 Brow/Spoolie Duals (£7.99).  The brow brush isn’t as firm/rough as something like the NARS brow brush but is about twice as firm as most other brow brushes – which makes me Goldilocks and it, the “just right” brush.  Spoolies?  Well, they’re always useful!

Revolution brushes are priced from £6.39 and available to buy online in the UK at Royal & Langnickel

* press sample

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