L’Oreal Sublime Mousse Hair Dye Review

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 24 - 2011

Hair dyes are taking the proverbial at the minute and I’m *this* far away from being brand loyal for once and going back to Superdrug for my essentials.

The reason I haven’t done so already is because I’m loving the (newish) mousse formula for a mess-free application.  I have previously reviewed the two other main contenders on the market if you’re interested in comparing.  Individually, I found them lacking… they had their strengths but also displayed weaknesses that I wouldn’t be able to overcome when it was time for a repurchase.

Which meant I was pretty excited to see a new mousse formula on the shelves when I trotted back to the chemist for a replacement.

L’Oreal Sublime Mousse in #40 Pure Dark Brown caught my attention in an instant.  I was practically clapping like a seal as my eyes drifted over the wonderfully ashy-looking shades in the range.  Ashy suits me well, red tones make my face look even pinker and as Summer approaches, I can do without the permanent flushed look.

Application was good, though I was a little disappointed to see the usual (too big) plastic gloves included.  I’ve been spoilt by the proper latex ones John Frieda’s product provided!  The instructions were precise and clear and didn’t incorrectly tell me to ‘shake the bottle’ as I experienced with the Clairol either…. so far, so good.

30 minutes of developing time later, at least it covers the greys….

Let’s just say… I’ve been using anti-dandruff shampoo daily in an attempt to fade it.

Not only that but the colour is leaching as a semi-permanent might.  How do I know this?  My white 500 thread count Egyptian Cotton pillowcase tells me so.  Yeah, I’m ecstatic about that one.

L’Oreal Sublime Mousse Hair Colour is available to buy from most usual stockists inc. Boots priced at around £6.99

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What are your preferred hair colourants at the moment?


Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion Mascara Review

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 24 - 2011

Do you know the last time I did a mascara review?  No, me neither… but it’s been a hella long time.  I used to do at least one a month but I ended up disillusioning myself seeing such little overall difference between the various tubes available.

One Mascara that I’ve always meant to pick up and try is the Max Factor False Lash Effect which I know often gets loads of praise from MUA circles.  I umm’ed and ahh’ed in Boots over whether to go for the original or this new spangly looking purple one.  I lived up to my girly stereotype and went for the spangly one.

See?  Spangly.

How about more important things though, like brush… formula… ability to falsify lashes?

They say:

False Lash Effect Fusion combines Max Factor’s biggest ever volumising brush with its latest lengthening formula to create thicker and longer lashes. For those girls who want an extreme lash look, they’ve come to the right place.

I say, the chunky brush is pretty nice… but I imagine that for those with short lashes it could be a nightmare.  I always have difficulty trying to detect whether the bristles are indeed bristles, plastic or rubber… these feel like stumpy old-style bristles to me but I could be wrong.  It’s been known to happen!

The formula is pretty good.  I hate thin formulas that practically drip off the brush (I’m looking at you Bourjois 1001 cils) but I equally dislike mascaras that last about 3 weeks before drying up.  This is middle of the road.

Are the results middle of the road too?  See for yourselves…

I see a good amount of volume and I love how the Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion has emphasised my lashline so heavily but I’m not seeing the length I was hoping for from this mascara.

I’m gonna try combining it with my favourite length-boosting mascara… who knows, I may stumble upon the ‘ultimate’ pairing!

You can currently purchase Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion for a very reasonable £8.99 (saving £3 off the original price) at Boots.

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Have you tried Max Factor’s False Lash Effect Fusion Mascara yet?  How about the original?

Experience the East at Ellenborough Park and Spa

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 19 - 2011

Situated on the edge of the Cotswolds and with just as much chocolate-box charm, stands Ellenborough Park, once a school for girls and now boasting 62 lavishly-decorated bedrooms within its 15th Century walls.

I was invited along last week to discover the newly opened Spa, heavily influenced by the hotel’s historical connections with Lord Ellenborough, Governor General of India.  The Spa is a haven of Eastern design with careful attention to detail and flourishes that bring the 19th Century colonial rule to a gentler age!

Ellenborough Park

Spread over two levels, The Spa at Ellenborough Park boasts a hydrotherapy pool, sauna, steam room, sensation showers, seven individual treatment rooms and a couples treatment suite for the use of those who prefer to experience a bit of pampering a deux!

Hydrotherapy Pool – image courtesy of Ellenborough Park

Having spent the journey to Ellenborough Park bickering with Mr. L about the best way to get there, I arrived bad-tempered and weary before throwing myself into the arms of Tessa who’d been charged with the task of introducing me to my first Aromatherapy Massage.

For the first 5 minutes, I was tense and resistant to Tessa’s hands but a few reassuring strokes and a couple of deep breaths later, I’d turned to putty.  She kneaded and unwound the knots across my shoulder blades without a pummel in sight!  I’d chosen the Babor Energising blend of oils which scented my skin (and the room) with a tangy mix of grapefruit and petitgrain, leaving me feeling revitalised and clear-headed.

An exclusive range of Babor products available in the Spa

My massage struck the perfect balance with firm but gentle pressure and thankfully no blathering from my therapist or elevator music to interrupt my bliss.  Whilst the pressure was consistent enough to stop me from nodding off, I may have very nearly dribbled on my towel.  But I won’t confirm that.

If you go, I recommend spending the additional £25 to extend your experience to a full 55 minutes because it’ll take a pair of wild horses to drag you from that bed.  If there are no wild stallions at hand, there’s always the temptation of The Juice Bar where you can sit and quench your thirst or the enticing hydrotherapy pool downstairs.

The Spa blends seamlessly into the tranquil surroundings of the hotel

If massages aren’t your cup of Darjeeling, the Ellenborough Spa also offers signature treatments that include the summery-sounding Maritime Salt Body Exfoliation (£45) and decadent Sea Creation Facial Ritual (£115) along with various manicure/pedicure treatments that make use of the Leighton Denny range.

Leighton Denny at Ellenborough Spa

I’ll leave you with some more images from my visit to Ellenborough Park.  As you can see, I took advantage of the good weather to have a proper nosey around the Cheltenham hotel!









I was fortunate to have the opportunity to enjoy their hospitality so soon after the 18-month restoration which has revealed a luxury country retreat that achieves an admirable balance between the traditional and the modern, the formal and the informal… business, pleasure and everything inbetween.

For more information on Ellenborough Park and Spa visit www.ellenboroughpark.com or call 01242 807528

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Disclosure: I was invited to experience Ellenborough Spa as a guest of the hotel and the treatment reviewed was complimentary.

Tried & Tested: Lancome Teint Miracle SPF15 Foundation

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 18 - 2011

Ahh a miracle… wouldn’t that be nice?  Let’s bottle some little miracles, tint them the same colour as our skintones and then buff ’em all over our face in the morning when we’re looking a bit ropey.  Et voila, we go from Linda La Hughes to Linda Lusardi in under 50 seconds.

Pop!  There goes that bubble…

a).  Only about half of you will know who Linda Lusardi is and I should really set my sights a little higher than page 3.

b).  I’m not sure I believe in miracles and if I did, I wouldn’t find them in a bottle (unless it was 70% proof).

and

c).  Shut up and review the damn foundation already.

Lancome Teint Miracle is the company’s newest base which has, they say, been 10 years in the making.  It comes backed with some pretty flowery statements.  Stuff like…

Lancome decrypts the inner light of perfect skin and recreates it.

To that, I simply raise an eyebrow and say…

O Rly?

Teint Miracle is a medium/full coverage foundation that somehow manages to defy the laws of physics by retaining a light, fluid texture that blends as easily as my MAC F&B whilst offering coverage to almost rival something as potent as Estee Lauder Double Wear.  The more I think about how it could possibly achieve this, the more respect I gain for those 10 years in development.

I need to take a moment to marvel at the packaging because it’s not only rather attractive but also functional.  The pump is see-through which stops the “how many more pumps ’till it all comes out in a rush” guessing game we all know so well and for me, one full pump covers my face pretty much perfectly.  Your mileage may vary!

Lancome Teint Miracle in 010 Beige Porcelaine (the lightest shade) is a good match for my complexion.  I would class it as fairly neutral, neither leaning too much toward pink or yellow in the spectrum.  The formula also contains a light pearlessence, not Cullen-esque in the slightest but there is a sheen that almost makes the foundation look a shade too light for me when I first apply.  This fades as the foundation sets before becoming imperceptible but leaving behind a subtle glow.

The glow doesn’t look at all greasy or shiny until after the foundation has worn in for many hours but if you fear the glow, I’d suggest looking for something that offers a fully matte finish.  Me?  I embrace any and every glow I can get my hands on and this is one of the better ones out there.

Excuse the nightie and the early morning “oh God, it’s another day” expression.

Before is on the left if you hadn’t already sussed that.

The Lancome Teint Miracle gives me great coverage over my redness and veiny bits without looking too heavy and I’m really happy that it still allows my natural skin texture to peek through.  I really dislike medium/full coverage foundations when they make it abundantly clear on my face that they are indeed medium/full coverage foundations.

If you have any larger blemishes (like I did on the side of my nose) you’ll still need concealer to disguise the blighters.

As for longevity, I achieved good all-day wear from this foundation albeit with a bit of slippage on the nose toward the end of the day.  If  you have particularly oily skin you will need to powder at lunchtime.

My only bugbear with this rather lovely product is transfer.  For some reason, I have issues when I wear this.  Dab my nose on a tissue?  More foundation on tissue than nose.  This is obviously a problem and one that I’m not used to experiencing, if anyone has any ideas… let me know!

I’d also like to point out that I prefer to apply this with a brush.  Sponges are a no, no… even when damp my beauty blender likes to EAT this foundation.  Oh also, I think that if you already have a primer you’re in love with… you probably need to try this foundation ASAP.  I tried it over MAC Prep+Prime and it made an already smooth finish, incredible.  And I don’t even really like Prep+Prime!

Hope that wasn’t too indepth… I do totally advise a little trip to your local Lancome counter to see if they’ll colour match you or part with a sample so you can try for yourself.  I may not be one for miracles but Lancome Teint Miracle does come pretty close!

Lancome Teint Miracle SPF15 Foundation is available to buy instore or online priced at £26.00

* press sample

Hands up if you want soft mitts for Summer?

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 11 - 2011

We don’t like it but we can at last be excused a bit of roughness in the Winter as the harsh weather takes its toll on our poor extremities.  Our hands are usually the first to succumb to the Gods of dry skin and those rough bits that catch on your sleeves *ouch!*

In the Summer though, there really is no excuses for general skin dryness… so give yourself a helping hand and check out some of the hand creams below for a sure-fire way to get some silky softness back in your life!

Woods of Windsor True Rose Conditioning Hand and Nail Cream 125ml (£7.75)*

A lighter option for those who dislike the heavy feeling of cream on their hands.  This Woods of Windsor lotion absorbs quickly and efficiently whilst leaving behind a delicate rose scent.  I recommend keeping this one nearby though as you’ll need to top up regularly to ensure long-lasting softness.

Bliss High Intensity Hand Cream 75ml (£18.40)

I picked this up in Debenhams a little while ago and true to its name, the Bliss High Intensity Hand Cream delivers a welcome boost of moisturisation which means I can apply at night before bed and wake up in the morning with noticeably smoother digits.  A good choice to stash in the bedside table but perhaps not for you if you dislike the feeling of a rich cream on your hands.

Liz Earle Hand Repair 150ml (£19.65)*

If greasy residues are your main concern, the Liz Earle Hand Repair is the product you need!  The larger sizes come with a convenient pump dispenser which releases a rich, awesome smelling (as you’d expect) hand cream.  It absorbs with blistering speed, leaving my hands feeling silky to the touch.  Not as heavy duty in the moisturisation department as some, I’d recommend this for those with normal/dry skin concerns.

All for Eve Hand Cream 100ml (£7.50)

My top pick for Summer hand creams is the All for Eve offering I bought last month.  I keep this at my computer and would recommend this as the perfect every day hand cream.  It smells delicious, leans toward a lighter, more easily absorbed formula and at under £8 for a generous 100ml, it’s a bargain!  And don’t forget that all proceeds from ‘all for eve’ products go towards ‘The Eve Appeal’ fund.

Heathcote & Ivory Vintage Mimosa Mini Hand Creams 30ml (£4.00 for 3)*

Super cute mini hand cream that’s perfectly sized for some handbag toteing!  This Heathcote & Ivory Vintage Hand Cream is surprisingly potent for the money.  Again, more suited to normal/dry skin than those in need of severe replenishment, I particularly love the Shea Butter based formula which spreads itself thinly without taking all day to sink in!

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If you’re in particular need for something a little more intense, you might also be interested in taking a look at my review of the Lanolips Rose Balm Intense.

Are you getting your skin in shape for Summer?  What are your favourite hand creams at the moment?

* Denotes PR Sample

Sometimes, it takes a little bit of hindsight to fall in love…

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 8 - 2011

I can sometimes be a bit slow on the old review lark… I get excited about a new product and throw myself into full-on playing, sniffing, painting, daubing and general testing but it has come to my attention that I’m not a conveyer belt of product analysis.

Like every other human being on this planet.  I’m fallible and I didn’t see this one coming.  Well, I kinda did because I gushed about it to a friend 6 weeks ago.  She had also tried it but didn’t like it and her impressions made me doubt my gut instincts, so I cooled my passions a little and tried to inject a touch of devils advocate into the situation.  Receiving gratis products to play with and review is undoubtedly completely awesome but with it comes a degree of responsibility in not wanting to let anyone down by being anything other than ‘spot on’ with my reviews.

With that in mind, I’d been mulling over the results I wasn’t sure I was seeing… at odds with the simple truth that I loved how the product applied/felt/moisturised etc.  But then I saw a before/after photo that wasn’t even relevant to the product I’m talking about and my doubts were blown sky high.

By now, you probably know I’m rabbiting on about the eye cream I mentioned on Friday.  A couple of you pointed out that you could detect a visible difference and in a world of disappointing anti-aging products that claim to offer the world, a visible difference (even slight) is a little beacon in the night.

Skinceuticals A.G.E Eye Complex* gives a pretty understated impression when it comes to kerb appeal.  Even more so when you consider the price tag of £78.00.  I’ve paid more for an eye cream precisely once in my life and after finishing the pot, I chided myself and said I’d never do it again.  Well, never say never…

The simply styled packaging contains 15ml of product that promises to diminish dark circles, puffiness and effects of glycation.  I don’t really understand what glycation is other than at the base level of it causing premature signs of aging because of degrading body tissue… but this product claims in the long term to reduce the effects of this glycation and in the short term, help mask the appearance of dark circles and puffiness.  Still with me?  Have a read of what they say…

…Immediately, optical diffusers improve radiance and minimize the appearance of dark circles and capillaries. Within four to twelve weeks, a complex of flavonoids and synergistic peptides improves lymphatic drainage and eliminates accumulated hemoglobin’s colored degradation end-products to dramatically improve dark circles and puffiness.

By twelve weeks and beyond, blueberry extract interrupts the formation of advanced glycation end-products (A.G.E.) and Proxylane restores water and nutrient content to the dermal epidermal junction (D.E.J.) to increase skin elasticity and thickness for dramatic improvement of wrinkles and crow’s feet.

Well now that I’ve managed to baffle myself with the science-y bits… let me tell you the things that I do understand about this eye cream.

It’s intensely hydrating without being heavy or too rich and I haven’t experienced any problems with milia since using this.  I began testing it at a time when I was very dry under my eyes, scaly dry even.  The Skinceuticals cream took charge immediately and within a matter of days my skin was back to normal.

Within a couple of weeks, I felt that the shadow around the edge of my eye socket had a lifted a little but I wasn’t 100% sure if I was imagining it.  As for fine lines or crepiness?  Well, I didn’t notice any differences at all.

This is the same impression I was left with after 8 or so weeks.  Amazingly hydrating, beautiful to apply, cooling on the eye area and simply lovely.  But a £78 spend demands a bit more than that for me.  My demands were coming closer to being met the other day when I was editing a before/after for my UD Lush Lash post.  Here it is again…

To my mind, my eyes look less puffy and the fine lines seem shallower (particularly the one on the right) in the 2nd photo.  OK, it’s not groundbreaking… it hasn’t erased all imperfections or tightened up any droopiness on my eyelids.  Neither is this a hugely scientific experiment but I’m TOTALLY feeling vindicated in an “Oooh I knew I liked this product for a reason!” kinda way.

I’ve been using SkinCeuticals A.G.E Eye Complex for around 11 weeks (once a day) and I estimate that I’ll be finishing my pot in around another 8 weeks.  I’m currently undecided about a repurchase.  If it were £30/40 cheaper, I’d be on it like a recovering alcoholic on a Lambrini.  But let’s wait and see what another 8 weeks bring… if it makes my undereyes smoother than a baby’s bum, I’ll be sure to let you know about it!

Skinceuticals A.G.E Eye Complex is priced at £78 and available to buy online from BeautyExpert.

* Press Sample

What’s the most you’ve ever paid for an eye cream (and was it worth it?)

Urban Decay Lush Lash – The Results!

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 6 - 2011

I know a few of you have been keen to hear about how I fared with my trial of Urban Decay’s Lush Lash System*.  I started the trial back in February and finished up the tube a few weeks ago.

The system promises lashes that are…

– 25% longer and thicker in 2 weeks
– 40% longer in 4 weeks
– 63% longer in 6 weeks

Sadly, I didn’t experience anything as impressive as those results.  Infact, I’m not really sure I experienced anything much at all.  See what you think (the top image shows the BEFORE, the bottom image is AFTER using the system for 8 weeks).

I think I see more fullness to my lashline… but no increase in length.  Or at least, nothing worth shouting about.  (On a side note, damn… I think I’m in love with my eye cream LOL!)

As a peptide-based lash growth system, it works on the premise of protecting the lashes you already have and strengthening new ones coming through, thereby increasing their life cycle.  This is probably why I’m seeing a slight increase in volume as the lashes that would have normally fallen out are still clinging on thanks to the fortification.

At £28 it’s an affordable alternative to the more expensive systems out there which include the likes of M2Beauté, LiLash and Revitalash but I can’t help but wonder if sometimes, you really do get what you pay for.

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Urban Decay Lush Lash is priced at £28 and available to buy online from BeautyBay, LookFantastic and HQHair

* PR Sample

Travalo, making perfume portable and a GIVEAWAY!

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 5 - 2011

When a product gets over 200 5* reviews on Amazon, I can’t help but take notice.  Which is how I ended up buying one of these Travalo perfume atomisers last Christmas to put in a care parcel for my sister in Oz.  I haven’t actually *sent* this parcel yet, infact… I’m looking at it with overwhelming guilt as I type this. Note to self: send the damn parcel already, it has creme eggs and a packet of twiglets with her name on ’em!

I’m tangenting…

Anyway, I was contacted by Travalo’s PR last month who wondered if I’d heard of the atomiser… “Yes!” says I, irrelevantly explaining what a completely awful sister I was.  Once I’d stopped rambling, they deduced that I hadn’t actually tried it for myself and kindly offered to send me one.

Behold.  The Travalo.  (and a nearly empty bottle of Hypnotic Poison).

The premise is simple.  We don’t want to carry big bottles of breakable perfumes around with us in our handbags and we *definitely* don’t want to pack them in our suitcases to take on hols but we still want to smell incredible right?

Old fashioned perfume atomisers involved fiddly things like funnels and swearing under your breath as you poured half your bottle of EDT over yourself, the kitchen counter and the cat before managing to eke maybe half a drop into the atomiser vessel.

Travalo uses a pump action to draw the juice from the original bottle into the atomiser chamber without a single drop going to waste.  Or that’s how it works in theory at least… look…

You just pop the nozzle off your favourite perfume and press the base of the Travalo onto the exposed, erm, errr, stump?  I’m sure that’s not the technical word.

It totally reminds me of watching my mum refill her BIC lighters in the 80s.  But again, with less swearing.

There’s something incredibly satisfying about pumping the Travalo up and down on the stump of the perfume bottle.  And it doesn’t even remotely make me think of sex either.

You get about 50 spritzes from a full Travalo which should be plenty for a week in the Sun.  I like that the atomiser has a decent nozzle too… it doesn’t dribble fragrance pathetically or force me to make do with my most hated of dispensers… the roller ball.

It’s a bit “form follows function” in its design and styling but it serves its purpose well without any major faults.  I’ve lumped it about with me in my handbag, given it to L to play with in the back of the car and even let Mr. L have a go at filling it after his curiosity got the better of him.  It has suffered a fair few scratches where the Travalo has bumped up against my car keys so I’d like to see the product come with one of those little drawstring pouches to keep it better protected.

When all is said and done though, it’s solidly achieved what it promises without fuss or palava, providing an affordable solution to a common fragrance dilemma!

Travalo Rapid Pump Fill Perfume Atomiser Bottle is available to buy online from CheapSmells and Amazon, priced from £7.10 with free delivery.

GIVEAWAY TIME!

Now, for the giveaway… I have one of these Travalo Atomisers (in PINK!) to give away to a lovely Facebook follower!  If you don’t already following Lipglossiping.com on the book of faces, why not? Oh, you hate facebook?  In that case drop me an email and I’ll enter you anyway.

If you ARE on Facebook, it’d be much easier to go here and click LIKE.  Or alternatively click the ‘like’ button over there on the right somewhere —>

T&C
1. Entry open to worldwide participants by liking the Lipglossiping.com Facebook page.
2. Alternative entry available for Facebook haters by email.
3. One winner will be picked at random from all participants.
4. Lipglossiping.com is the sole promoter of this giveaway.
5. Competition closes on Friday 13th May 2011 at 23.59.
6. Winner will be notified through Facebook or email within 5 days of the close of the competition.
7. No email addresses will be stored once the competition has closed and will only be used to contact the winner.

 

Aroma Therapeutics Bath & Body, sniff and you’ll miss it.

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 3 - 2011

You would be forgiven for not having heard of Aroma Therapeutics before… I stumbled across them when I was at The Vitality Show last month.  They were doing an offer on their bath and body oils and being the sucker oil lover that I am, I couldn’t resist parting with my pennies for a few.

In the bottle, they smell incredible.  Easily as good as offerings from the more well-known brands such as Aromatherapy Associates, Tisserand and NEOM… but sadly, this is pretty much where the similarities end.

Once dispensed into water… the scent dissipates far too quickly, we’re talking gone in a matter of 30 seconds.  Frankly, a fart would linger for longer.  I’m guessing that although exquisitely blended… there just isn’t enough of the potent stuff in these bottles to carry the aroma for a decent length of time.  I’ve also tried applying to my skin before jumping in the shower… but again, as soon as the water hits it, sayonara good stuff.

It truly is a bit of a tragedy because the Recharger scent (Rosemary, Ginger, Rosewood, Nutmeg and Orange) in particular is divine.  I haven’t tried any of the other products in the same scent lineup which includes massage oils and spray concentrates, perhaps I should limit the use of these purely on my skin rather than as part of my bathing routine but damn it, I bought these as bath treats!

Aroma Therapeutics are available to buy online from Fragrant Earth and are currently on BOGOF and are £26.65 for 50ml.

What are your favourite bath-time treats?

Yaby Freestyle Palette

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 30 - 2011

Another one of my IMATS purchases from earlier in the year was this Yaby Freestyle palette… ‘freestyle’ because it holds any shape of pan in the same way the more well-known z-palettes do.

Being a Yaby palette, it’s not exactly large… at around 15cm (longest side), it’s smaller than MAC, Z-Palette, Unii and MUFE palettes but as my end goal is to fill it with Yaby products (which are teeny tiny too), I don’t have a problem with the compact sizing.

Mine is currently filled with a few randoms (5 Yaby eyeshadows, a Yaby brow powder, 1 MAC eyeshadow, a Yaby blusher and a Stila eyeshadow to be precise!).

The palette is well-constructed with solid hinges, strong magnets and sturdy housing.  The mirror is large and without any obvious distortions.

It’s pretty much a delight to take away on holiday and I can’t wait to fill it with more baby Yaby goodies!

I bought my Yaby Freestyle Palette from The Makeup Artist Boutique (who were exhibiting at IMATS).  It is priced at £10.99 from their web store.

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in New Lover and Hopi

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 29 - 2011

Despite the moniker, lip glosses aren’t really my bag.  I find them gloopy, sticky, uncomfortable to wear and unless careful not to overapply, can make you look like an extra from Saturday Night Beaver.

Admittedly, they’re less high maintenance than lipsticks and are undoubtedly nifty for quick touch ups when your lippie has all but been eaten away.  However, for me… they come a poor second to my faithful lipstick devotion.

So, how about a hybrid?

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencils are still fairly new additions to the market.  Launched in February, they promise the convenience of a pencil with the application of a lipstick in a jumbo-size crayon design.

Well, first things first… you can kiss the gloopiness issues goodbye.  Thanks to this delivery method, you can apply a thin, even layer of gloss over your lips without any thickness or pooling.  Yes, they’re still a touch tacky on the lips but there is no risk of those disgusting stringy gloss strands when you open your mouth… and we’ve all seen too many of those on over-enthusiastic gloss wearers right?

I was sent two shades from the lineup: Hopi (Honey Beige) and New Lover (Strawberry Pink laced with Gold).

New Lover on the left and Hopi on the right.

The texture is soft, really very soft… take care when sharpening these babies.  I would have preferred to have seen them in a twist-up form but alas, they are what they are.

Again, New Lover is on the left and Hopi on the right.  They’re well pigmented with great, natural colour.  I feared that their pencil form meant that they might go down faster than a fat kid on a seesaw but they’re holding up better than I expected on that score.

Because of their convenience, I keep New Lover in my bag for when my lipstick wears off and have been substituting it for quick fixes post-lunch.  I also have my eye on Baroque which seems more to my taste with its bolder, raspberry undertones.

Finally, a lip swatch of both so you can see how they look applied…

They’re pretty, understated shades that dodge my lipgloss-hating bullet well.

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencils are priced at £17.50 a-piece and are available online and on counter now.

Red Lips Day 14: Estee Lauder Signature Lipstick #62 Scarlet

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 14 - 2011

A luxurious-looking lipstick with a heavy-weight gold case.  The Signature Hydra Lustre range looks a little retro but it’s because of this rather than inspite of it… that it seems to ooze a touch of class.  In other words, I like to twirl the packaging… it makes me feel like a laydee.

Scarlet* is a slightly pink-toned red which will make it a good choice for the warmer weather.  I don’t know about you but the thought of wearing uber red lipstick in the Summer makes me feel a little uneasy, like I’m breaking some unwritten rules or something.

It’s heavily scented, my nose detects fig… it’s pleasant enough but may be off-putting for anyone delicate to scented products.

The formula is a delight, infact so much so – that I’ve already added a few other shades to my swatch list for next time I’m passing Debenhams.  I usually call a lipstick non-drying rather than moisturising… but this one almost edges into moisturisation territory as I can see it practically ‘plumping out’ the furrows in my lips rather than sinking into them.

I would really recommend checking out the Estee Lauder Signature range more closely if you suffer from dry lips.

So, you’d think that with such a lip-friendly lipstick, you’d get similar slip to something like the YSL Rouge Volupte right?  Wrong.  Scarlet applies well with no drag but I’d certainly not class it as ‘glidey’.  It applies like a normal lustre lipstick and wears for a good 5 hours.

Pink reds aren’t generally my favourite shade – so I’d deduct a couple of points for that, I’d recommend swatching on skin before buying incase the bullet colour is a little different to how it transfers.  Also, the swatches on the Estee Lauder website are not good.

Overall though, I’m really impressed, particularly with the formula which delivers everything it promises and then some more for good measure.

Estee Lauder Signature Lipstick in #62 Scarlet is available to buy online from their website, HouseOfFraser and Debenhams or on counter, priced at £18.00

* press sample

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