Saturday, 26 February 2011

Aveda Smooth Infusion Style-Prep Smoother

I might have mentioned this before, I have been dyeing and highlighting my hair nearly since I have been 14 years old. Naturally, all this has taken it's toll on the condition of my hair and I decided six months ago to chop and dye it all jet black so that I can start all over again. I am liking my black hair at the moment but may go back to being lighter in the summer. My goal at the moment is to start strengthening, and healing my damaged hair. I don't like using many products because my hair is still pretty thick and feel that most things weigh my it down. However, I am using a couple of things like moroccan oil, and I have now started incorporating the Aveda Smooth Infusion Style-Prep Smoother into my routine now.
My hair is all pretty broken where I kept putting in highlights so at the moment, it gets a bit flyaway on the top. This stuff helps control these problems. Especially during this crazy windy weather. It claims to:

"tame frizz and defend against humidity for up to 12 hours thanks to our breakthrough plant infusion formula that creates a smooth surface on hair, protecting from heat styling."

I work in an air conditioned office where myself and my colleagues have a daily battle with Facilities team over the gusts of cold air that goes through our section. I blame this office for me being ill for nearly over three months now. This evil air conditioning also dries my skin out and makes my hair look like a mad woman by the afternoon. I have discovered that this helps keep my hair style throughout the day, so now it is definitely a staple in my hair care.
The product smells AMAZING as do all Aveda products. It smells all natural, organic and how products in salons usually smell. You know, expensive! It costs £18 for 100ml and will last you for ages I reckon as you only need a small blob through damp hair. The next day, my hair doesn't look greasy and flat either - a bonus!

They were giving out samples a couple of weeks ago in their salons, I suggest try and get one if they have any left. 

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Things I'm loving at the moment (Feb '11)

E.L.F Sheer Mineral Booster (starting at £3.50)

I'm a big fan of the Bare Minerals 'Mineral Veil', and think this E.L.F version is a pretty decent, much cheaper dupe. I've been using this on top of my foundation and cream blushes to set everything. It doesn't stop the shiny t-zones coming through all day however. But it is so light weight and non-cakey looking, and I like the way it looks.

Batiste Brit Dry Shampoo (£2.19)
I've mentioned this before but since discovering dry shampoo, my hair is looking better as it being allowed to rest in between washes. I cannot recommend this product highly enough, it really will change the way you do your hair! A bonus of using this is that it helps me style my hair and keep it in place without having to use other products to weigh my hair down. This Brit Batiste version is so clean and fresh smelling, I love it!

Origins Starting Over Age-erasing Moisterizer with Mimosa (£35)

Origins products as a general rule are really good and this is no exception. I'm loving using this in the winter months. I like to wear this on days I don't wear makeup (which is only when I know I'll be at home all day!). This is because when I wear this over a serum, I feel that my complexion looks smoother and brighter.  It has three main ingredients: Mimosa (soothing proerties), Argan Leaf Extract (protects against UV) and Green Algae (helps skin boost its now natural collagen). My skin feels smooth and plump all day.

NYX 'Goddess of the Night' Lipgloss in 'Juicy Red' 149 (£3.99)

NYX is a bit harder to get in the UK. There are however a few decent sites which you can order from. I'm into red lips at the moment and this on top helps soften the drama of the colour. The gloss smells of delicious strawberry and it gives such a long lasting 'glossy effect'. Really good value for money. Definitely will invest on a few more colours.

No7 Perfect Lips Pencil in' 15 Fire' (£7.50)

I love wearing this all over my lips and then using the NYX gloss on top. If I want something more dramatic, I use Mac's Russian Red lipstick in between these two products.

Korres Volumising Lash Conditioning and Strengthening Mascara (£10.00)
At first glance, the wand or the product do not look very exciting and when I first tried it, I was annoyed about the price I paid for something which I thought did not work at all. However, after a couple of days when a bit of air went in, I have fallen in love with this mascara. It does not necessary make my lashes longer, but makes them look more plump and full. I am using this every morning at the moment, and I am glad I bought it. 

Enhanced by Zemanta

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Nars Sheer Glow with Benefit 'That Gal'

My favourite foundation/primer combo of the moment - they are the Benefit 'That Girl' brightening face primer and Nars Sheer Glow foundation. These together seem to work really well with my super dry winter skin at the moment.

Benefit 'That Girl' brightening face primer (21.50)

Please excuse the wear and tear of the outside packaging, I've had this product for a couple months now. I was initially a bit hesitant to get this as I thought it would be gimmicky and would end up making me look like a greaseball by the end of the day. But I have been pleasantly surprised by it. The 'Bad Gal' comes in what looks like a cross between a Prit Stick and play dough machine, and you have to twist the bottom to get the product out.
I hate this because it reminds me of little worms. So I am not a big fan of the container it comes in. The product itself is a light, creamy pink. It smells very sweet and lovely. Despite the colour, it is suitable for all skin tones, as I find with a lot of Benefit products. The idea behind this is, that it is meant to help brighten dull complexion as well as act as a primer. It does brighten the complexion, and as you lightly blend it over the skin, you can see your face looking a bit more healthier. It also smoothes out the skin so acts as a good base for foundation. What I do it put this on after my moisteriser, let it sink in whilst I do my eye make up, them put the foundation on top. It also works really well as a highlighter which I tend to top up through the day.

Nars Sheer Glow (£29 for 30ml)

I got skin matched last summer in 'Sycracuse' which was a pretty good match for me. Reviews of this foundation are in abundance, and they tend to be positive. I agree with these reviews. Although pricey, this is lasting me ages. I would say it is a medium coverage, and no matter how many layers I put on, it never seems to look 'caked'. It dries to a natural, healthy finish and does not wipe off the minute you touch it. In fact it is very well long wearing. At the moment, it is the best foundation I have tried and experienced. I will definitely be repurchasing this. I've got enough left for maybe three or four faces so looking forward to see what shade I'll be for winter.

What I have recently discovered is using the 'That Gal' under the Nars Sheer glow, my skin looks flawless without looking overly made up or like a disco ball. The foundation will last throughout my 9 hour work day, and I just need to lightly touch up around my t-zone if I'm planning to go out in the evening.

It photographs beautifully as well - the skin looks flawless, glowing and radiant.

One word of warning with bad gal, is that I have discovered that it does not work well with all foundations. Its a disaster under Mac Face & Body, and anything too 'liquidy'. I don't find it works well as a primer with some other foundations and to be honest, I only use it with my Nars. Actually, it works well with the Maybelline 24hr Stay as well.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

This Is Yesterday

16 years ago, Richey Edwards from the Manic Street Preachers walked out of the hotel he was staying in, and never came back. This guy didn't realise how much of an inspiration he was to his and the future generations with just the power of his words. Depression is such a bitch. But of course it would be wrong to sum him up to something as simple as that.

I was lucky enough to see the Manics again on 21 January 2011 at the Brixton Academy. I got seating this time which was good because I got to listen to them properly. But I was itching to get up from my seat and jump up and down like a maniac a good few times (I somehow managed to restrain myself). I looked around me, and it was filled with people of all ages, nationality and race. In front of me was a guy probably in his early 50's singing along to every single tune. Next to us was a girl who just leaned forward all night, her face in awe, hardly saying a word. There were a few students behind us who analysed their early days work whilst the stage was being prepared. There seems to be a form of solidarity with Manic fans that you don't tend to get with other bands.

Again, I tried to take some videos on my crappy iphone, and again they turned up not too great. As a tribute to Richey, I found some of my favourite Manic songs - some written by Richey, and some by Nicky Wire - which I wanted post.

James Dean Bradfield did a three song acoustic set midway through the gig. "This is Yesterday"was my favourite. My eyes were all welled up during this song, as also were a lot of people around us. It just shows Bradfield's talent in its pure form. Richey and Nicky write the lyrics, and James puts it to music. I can't fathom the talent of being able to do that. For someone to be able to put your words to music perfectly. He gets it right with every single song. Plus, his voice is bloody amazing.
"Faster" - this is my favourite song of all time. I remember being actually scared of this song when I first heard it because it sounded so in-your-face and accusatory. But slowly, it became such an empowering song to me. It actually makes me feel stronger when I hear it. Like I can take on the crap gets thrown about for those few minutes.
"Roses In The Hospital" - just a great song to sing (shout) along to. Sounds fantastic live.
"Revol" - another one of my all time favourites, and probably my favourite videos with 'Faster'. But gosh does Richey look so vacant and apathetic in this, heartbreaking in retrospect.
"La Tristesse Durera (scream to a sigh)" - this was written about war veterans. Every word is so powerful and emotional in this song. 
"Little Baby Nothing" - Legend has it that they originally wanted Kylie to sing the vocals. Thank goodness her corporate record company didn't let her. Instead, Richey managed to get Traci Lords to sing with Bradfield. Lords couldn't be around for the video and the rest of the band couldn't be bothered to do it. So its just Bradfield, a Lords 'looky-likey' and a bunch of MSP fans with loads of slogans. I think this is a fantastic video as every time I watch it, I find something new to think about. To me, this video is the core essence of the Manics - no compromise.
Richey's presence is always felt around them even though he vanished so long ago. Whenever they play, the area of the stage where he always stood, is always left vacant, ready for him in case he decides to come back. They did have an extra guitarist (I think he was there at the XFM as well), but he respectably kept his distance towards the back. Is he dead, or wondering the sights of Goa? Everyone has their own opinion, I have mine.

People either can't stand the Manics, or are devoted, die hard fans who research every reference and lyric and quote from their songs in order to derive the true meaning to what they are trying to tell us. To me, the Manics are just so clever and intelligent. They don't write about romance or having a nice day. They are far too political and real for that. I remember listening to 'Your love alone' and then reading somewhere that the title came from a friend's suicide note. They don't do love songs! These guys have known each other since they were six or seven and they are still the best of friends, maintaining their roots when they could have gone all LA. I know I have dedicated quite a few posts to them, and I hope I don't come across as some Manics crazy nut. Its just that the band, and Richey's 'manifesto' as they call it, has become to mean a lot to me again over the last year. The Manics always comforted me back during those awkward teenage years because they made it alright to be different and not conform. Although some of their songs and behavior have proper pissed me off, they'll always have a corner of my heart.

Related articles
Enhanced by Zemanta