Friday, 3 February 2012

Yves Saint Laurent Manucure Couture Duo - No 5

I have always wanted to be able to paint my own nail tips and have tried so many different DIY manicure sets which all claim to make what can only be described as a fiddly activity easy. Well, I've never found it easy. 

When Yves Saint Laurent came to beauty HQ I was delighted to get my hands on this set of Yves Saint Laurent Manucure Couture Duo in No 5 as not only are the colours very chic (especially love the blue) but the little pictures on the back of the box showing an angled brush makes this little duo seem promising in terms of ease of use. 

Back of Manucure Couture Duo box
Angled brush for easy tip application
I was not disappointed. I did find it slightly tricky to paint the base of my nails (next to cuticles) but got the hang of it pretty quickly. Application was smooth and one coat was enough for both colours to offer full coverage. Painting the tips was much much easier than other brands I have tried - the intensity of the blue looked striking on a caramel base, but surprising the caramel had no problem showing up on a blue base and actually works vey well if you only want subtle tips. 

Blue on caramel

Caramel on blue

The varnish did start to chip slightly by the end of the day but it was easy to touch up. The manicure lasted 5 days with touch ups everyday or 2. Overall I am delighted with this little duo and the bottles look great on any dressing table. 

The Yves Saint Laurent Manucure Couture Duo in No 5 is available on for £24. 

Until next time,

Lipstick Mama xoxo

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Benefit Full Finish Lipstick - Espionage (black cherry)

So here goes, Lipstick Mama's first lipstick post. 

I am a massive fan of Benefit cosmetics (who doesn't love their packaging and quirky names?) but have never owned any of their lipsticks before. I've been after a darker lipstick that would give me a vampy look without making me look like a vampire and the Benefit Full Finish Lipstick in Espionage (black cherry) caught my eye. As you can see, the lipstick itself looks very dark but I took the risk - I could always save it for Halloween if all fails. 

Benefit Full Finish Lipstick in Espionage (black cherry)
When I put it on, I was surprised at how light the colour is on my lips (compared to the lipstick itself). I like it a lot more than I thought I would. I'm not used to wearing dark lipstick shades so felt like my former 8 year old self trying on my mother's makeup for the first time as I tried my hardest to not go over my lip line. It was very smooth and easy to apply. 

Fresh application - 2 coats

After dinner

It's a beautiful colour and you can of course build up the intensity by applying more coats (I just don't have the patience to make it super dark). In the pictures above, it looks quite glossy (photo was taken immediately after application) but it's not very moisturising and I highly recommend exfoliating and moisturising your lips before putting this on as every bit of dry skin will show up (gross!).  

As you can see, after dinner my lipstick had come off a bit but after I pursed my lips a bit and redistributed the colour and it looked about a shade lighter but coverage was actually still good. 

To give you some perspective on its staying power, I applied this lipstick before I got into work at 9am and didn't touch up again until after lunch, but by then the glossiness had worn off and most of the colour had gone (bearing in mind I had 2 cups of tea!). The colour is fairly long lasting but it could be because this shade is quite dark and stains the lips, rather than a super effective long lasting formula. 

The Benefit Full Finish Lipstick is available directly from Benefit's website for £14 in comes in 20 shades. 

I am keen to try the Benefit Silky Finish Lipstick instead just for comparison. Watch this space! 

Lipstick Mama xoxo

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Eyeko Skinny Eyeliner - the verdict

This is what the powder pink Eyeko eyeliner looked like after 10 hours of wear:

Eyeko Skinny Eyeliner in Powder Pink after 10 hours of wear

Can't see it? That's because my eyes seem to have eaten the liner during the course of the day. In fact, in my 30 minute commute to work I noticed that 50% of it had gone - by the time I got to work I had to look really hard to see any signs of pigment. 

Overall, I like the colour but its lack of staying power is disappointing. If I had it in a darker colour and it disappeared on my way to work I'd have been even more unimpressed - but who knows, maybe the darker shades work better. 

I am glad I got to try this in my Glossy Box but wouldn't buy it. If you would like to try this eyeliner for yourself, it's available in 6 shades and you can get it directly from Eyeko for £9.50 / €10.00 / $14.00.

Until next time, 

Lipstick Mama xoxo

Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Valentine's Edition Glossy Box - Eyeko Skinny eyeliner

Was super excited when The Boy came home with my January Glossy Box in tow as December seems like such a long time ago that I'd almost forgotten I had a subscription. This "Valentine's" edition came in a fushia pink box - the hidden sweet was a (ahem) sweet touch. 

My contents:
1) Eyeko Skinny Eyeliner in powder pink 
2) Clarins Extra Firming Night Cream (15ml)
3) Clarins Extra Firming Day Cream (15ml)
4) FAB Body Moisturiser (2.0 oz)
5) Murad Hybrids Skin Perfecting primer - dewy finish (5ml)

Not the most exciting box in the world although I will use all of the products...eventually. Clarins Night/Day cream seems like a bit of a cop-out by Glossy Box, perhaps either or would have done so we could have had an extra brand. The primer seems interesting although for now I will stick to my No7 BB cream. FAB moisturiser feels nice on the skin and refreshingly fragrance-less (at least I couldn't smell anything!) which is unsurprising as it claims to be suitable for sensitive skin. 

Now...onto the eyeliner...

Eyeko Skinny Eyeliner (powder pink)
Never used Eyeko products before so was intrigued to find that this eyeliner was in a shade so close to my own skin colour that I could hardly see it when I applied it to my arm. Lets play spot the squiggle:

It claims to "create dramatic and subtle effects with precise definition and smooth application" and describes the eyeliner as "Long-lasting wax based formula with a blendable cream finish". As you can see in the photo above, it also has a long silver handle which means even when your Eyeko eyeliner has been sharpened to a tiny nub you can still use it.

Ok now please don't laugh at my teeny weeny eyelashes (hey, I am using Rapidlash religiously but am probably not the best advert for it!) but I had to take the pictures below to show you the eyeliner in action...

Without Eyeko eyeliner
With Eyeko eyeliner
It did have a waxy feel and actually showed up quite well when applied to the waterline. However I am not so sure about the "long lasting" part: I've had it on for about 10 minutes and it seems to have faded already - this will probably be more noticeable in a darker shade. I am still quite pleased I've received this though as I was looking for a skin-coloured eyeliner to wake my eyes up on mornings when I need to fool people I've had more than 5 hours' sleep. 

Slightly annoying that the eyeliner cap looks rather cheap and has a small split on it as though someone rammed the cap on too enthusiastically during the manufacturing process. I am nit-picking, I know but that's what I'm here for. 

I may review the rest of the products as and when I try them...but here you are for now, my first Glossy Box review and my first blog post! I know it really should have been about a lipstick...but that'd be too predictable. 

Lipstick Mama xoxo