Posts Tagged beauty haul

Illamasqua – The Blush up Brush

Are you looking for a brush which provides definition, contour, elongation and ease? A brush to help you as a beauty enthusiast or beginner to contour? Well, I may have found the perfect brush for you, by Illamasqua! This is one of the ultimate brushes (I’ve discovered) which provides a ‘3D definition’ experience: D.

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The Illamasqua Blush Up Brush is priced at £28.50. If you have a Pro Artist account, you can benefit from the discount on the brushes. This is a highly recommended brush to own as part of your many brush collection and kit!

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As you can see from the image above, it is a highly dense ellipse shaped brush. I have taken photos from all angles to illustrate the dynamics of the cut of the brush. So, the base of the brush is flat and angled and the sides being stiff to create definition.

 

Belle Amour Makeup Artist

Here is a look I have created using the Blush Up Brush. I have used Sleek’s Contour kit (compact contour) alongside Illamasqua Blush Up Brush to define my cheekbones. I am aware that many of my dolls who own the Sleek Contour Kit find this product heavy. During use you have to be very light handed and must buff instantly once applied; or else it’ll look like mud on the face (a big disgrace!).

Well anyway, with the Sleek Contour kit (as heavy pigmented it is) I used the brush to define the contour areas, in fact, it was defined really well.

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Instagram: @BelleAmour_mua

Here is another close up of my cheek contour and a slight but subtle definition on the nose too.

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One more final close-up of the makeup look 😉

The brush has certainly defined the contour areas (esp the cheeks) well. If used correctly, when your contour looks harsh, just use a fluffy blending brush and brush in an upward stroke. The technique is all down to the way you apply colour – how much/how little. Furthermore to merge the blusher with the contour and highlight so it looks ‘well blended’ but noticeable at the same time.

Tip: If contour is overly harsh, use a translucent powder (either compact or loose) and lightly dust the area in question and see how the harshness fades… 😉

Happy New year from the Belle Amour Team x

With Love,

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Nip + Fab

Nip and Fab

– Nip + Fab –  ig: @BelleAmour_mua

Since college days (Ahh yes… The good old days!) , I’ve somewhat known about Nip + Fab products. How? (So you must be thinking…), my friends used to frequently post about their beauty hauls on Facebook status where I initially discovered this brand (so it subliminally imprinted on my brain since). I followed up to see where you can purchase Nip + Fab from – turned out only selected stores or their e-commerce site stocked them (wasn’t an Internet shopper back then).

A few months onwards, Glamour Magazine once featured their products on the health and beauty section and mentioned how Nip + Fab is one of the Celebrity beauty staples; vaguely remembering the singer Jamelia using it for cellulite/body lotion fix.

Just last week, I popped in to a bigger Superdrugs store and to my surprise, I stumbled across the ‘raved about’ Nip + Fab products. I was so excited to see this product being available AND stocked locally too that I had to pick at least two items up.

What came to my attention was the price, it was an absolute bargain! But that was quite strange when a few years earlier, I was not intrigued to purchase a £20 lotion (due to being a student and living that typical student life). Looks like their pricing and brand positioning strategies have changed.

As you can see from the above picture, I purchased the Nip+Fab Yoga Blend Body Lotion for only £4.25 (left) and the Nip+Fab Detox Blend Body Lotion also £4.25 🙂 we could not get lower than that back in my days (damn I feel so old -.-) !

The verdict : If you scan through the Superdrugs online store, under the Nip and Fab section, you will notice there are a few products ranging from £15+. I’m certainly laughing (in a good and happy way) as those same products were only available full price before and now they’re quite affordable and very cheap.

So far, I have used the Detox Body lotion and am liking the non-greasy feel and quick absorption.
It is 490ml so you cannot go wrong, even more because it comes with a pump which you can recycle if you must!

If you like the fresh scents of subtle tea tree or jasmine with that fresh scent of cucumber, then I am pretty sure you will like this lotion. OR, you may be like my cousin who put the bottle down after testing ‘ERGH! That smells like toilet freshener’. :/ either way dolls, test and smell before purchasing!

With Love,

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Invitation for the Liz Earle and Latest in Beauty event

I had the pleasure of being invited to the exclusive event held by Liz Earle in their flagship store in Duke of York Square, London.

Belle Amour

Liz Earle – Duke Of York Square

It was a wonderful and somewhat festive evening (after work) as Liz Earle held the Christmas-themed event which included seasonal skincare hints and tips and expert advice from their brand and beauty ambassador Sarah Carr; not to mention the complimentary manicure, drinks and canapés!

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It was a beauty carousel; you tour each section of the store to be educated and to learn more about their products and services – yes services too! Liz Earle (bigger stores only across the UK) has treatment rooms with bespoke facial treatments in private sanctuaries – it is slightly steep on pricing, but hey, Christmas is coming up so you may want to hint it to someone OR purchase gift vouchers for this amazing experience (money well spent!).

While I toured the store with a Belle Amour team member, we met Sarah Carr (Brand and Beauty Ambassador) who gave us product recommendations based on our skin concern whereby my concern were blemishes and pimple prone skin. I admired how I was not forced to purchase Liz Earle products, but was rather an informative educating session.

My initial perception of Liz Earle being a ‘mature skincare brand’ certainly changed; as now to me, is a fragile botanical skincare ‘resuscitator’. :p

However, how can I attend these events and come empty handed? Ummm… well not me! I purchased a few items to trial out to see how my skin reacts and thereafter, Liz Earle kindly gave us goodie bags which was also a treat!

Liz Earle Skincare

Products purchased and received from Liz Earle goodie packs

So far, I have trailed out the Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser & Instant Boost Skin Tonic. Eager to try out the latter, after work to help remove makeup and residue (which is always the biggest skincare chore); I directly massaged the cleanser on to my entire face – even the eyelids! To my surprise, my eyes did not sting as it was very soft and gentle on my skin. I took this to my advantage to massage a little harsher around my eye area as the bottle says it removed ‘…grime and even stubborn mascara’ – very impressive. However, I DO NOT recommend massaging like a crazy cat to my Dolls who have highly sensitive skin/eye areas.

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Liz Earle (right) Cleanse & Polish. Liz Earle (left) Instant Boost Skin Tonic

Once the cleanser was massaged I waited 5mins like a facial mask, prepped the cloth in warm tepid water then washed off the grime. The face felt nice and clean with no trace of makeup residue.

Finally, to finish off the program, with a cotton pad, I swept the facial tonic on face and neck to revitalise and tone the skin and did not bother moisturising as I did not feel the need to.

From my experience, if you are planning on owning any of the Liz Earle range, ensure the Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth is your starting point.

With Love,

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The Alum Crystal Deodorant

Had such an amazing time in Morocco last week, touring the city of Marrakesh and Essaouira; what a wonderful and hospitable country it is!

One of the activities I naturally enjoyed doing the most was shopping in Jemaa el Fna square; if you love to get yourself a bargain on many items (beauty, ornaments, accessories, jewellery to clothes) this is the place to be!

From visiting stand-to-stand, I have come across many ‘lotions and potions’ stands which intrigued me the most. I wanted to know what the native Moroccans use to beautify themselves; are they commercial products or secret natural goodness? What a typical product is and what they use in the heat to maintain perspiration.

From these stands and shops, I have acknowledged the popularity of Moroccan Argon oil, different types of mint teas, Rhassoul clay masks, rose water and Hamam pamper packs (each of which I have managed to purchase except for the masks) …and the Alum stones. Morocco is certainly known for natural organic herbal beauty; this is what greatly interests me.

With the interest of the natural Alum Crystal, I had to pick one up as I was shown demonstrations. In the past, during research, I have come across this natural earthly goodness but turned a blind eye and did not show much interest – I don’t know why!

Check this out:

100% Natural Alum Crystal

The Natural Alum Crystal is used as an astringent and basic antiperspirant

This is the natural alum crystal or potassium alum which is a natural mineral found in earth and mined for many years. Popularly used as deodorant in the Far and Middle East. The Alum crystal contains many virtues due to its antibacterial and natural properties. It acts as a basic antiperspirant/deodorant (for your armpits and even feet!), astringent and styptic to prevent bleeding and closes pores. What’s more, you’re preventing yourself from using synthetic products on your skin and welcoming natural remedies.

From growing up, using deodorant/antiperspirants has become an automatic hygiene regime and I strongly feel the West is quick to pick up these ‘man-made’ synthesised products without acknowledging the harmful effects on the body and environment. But hey, we all live a modern life-style so we need something readily available quick and easy.

This Alum stone is considered safe for the family, especially to those who suffer heavy perspiration because it does not block pores and allows your body to perspire as usual.

How to use the Alum stone as deodorant:

  1. Wet the stone, leave it to damp;
  2. Apply a thin layer on the areas you wish to sweat less, this could be your foot or arm pits;
  3. Damp your stone again to keep it clean and leave it on a soap dish to reside;

Upon using it myself, I straight away felt dryness and smoothness which felt great. It is odorless and though the stone looks sharp, it does not feel rough on the skin as overtime it evens out. With its natural and economical value, I foresee this stone to last me at least 2 years (subject to size of stone purchased and the amount of usage). I strongly recommend my dolls to ditch the deodorants/antiperspirants and welcome natural products to your skin, as your skin is the biggest organ which we must take care of. Whatever you introduce to your skin it will always absorb into your bloodstreams hence why pregnant women are extra vigilant what they feed into their skin!

The Alum Stone is readily available in Morocco to purchase. Alternatively from the comfort of your home you can purchase from the following sites:

  1. Alum stone
  2. Amazon
  3. The Executive Shaving Company
  4. Functional Cosmetics Company

Do let me know if you are using/used the natural alum stone and your feedback on this.

With Love,

Belle AmourFollow us:

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My Love for Eyeko Eye Do Liquid Eyeliner

A part of being a Make-up Artist means investing in the right cosmetic brands that’ll aid your creativity with the provision of ease. Every doll looks for that ‘one’ eye-liner to help them with that perfect flick and seamless finish. Effortless, yet a quick fix to look great – just like a little black dress, but on your eyes…

A product which has been subliminally passing me by on Instagram and Space.NK has been all of Eyeko’s cosmetic ranges, especially their eye-liners which I could not resist!

Make-up Artist or not, us dolls who wear make-up, our basic cosmetic staple IS an eye-liner. This is the basic tool which empowers women to look effortlessly great !

I am (I am sure you are too…) always on the look out for great eye-liners, esp to help me with bridal make-up. I love the whole intensified black seamless finished look eye-liners create when worn on top of eye shadows.  Asian bridals in particular have a common traditional signature style; that is a bold, smokey framed look!

Popped into Selfridges to purchase the Alexa Chung Eye Do eyeliner £15. Whilst doing a tester, I was quite impressed by the swatch (yo…first impressions count). The intense black swatch grabbed my attention instantly and I had to ultimately own one.

Eyeko Eyeliner

Alexa Chung Eye Do Eyeliner for £15

The colour pay off is intense and as the description goes (on their website), it does provide a carbon black stroke. What more is that it is waterproof!

Eyeko Alexa Chung Eye Do eyeliner

Eyeko Eyeliner: Swatch and the design of nib

You have room for creativity and flexibility with this pen-eyeliner mainly because the aesthetics of the nib allows you to either create the perfect cat-eye flick or subtle eye-liner to accentuate the eye OR those dramatic cat-eye look for the night out.

However, with the good and brilliant, there’s also a drawback. Funny, because previously I mentioned how the “aesthetics of the nib” is brilliant, but it is also its own drawback. The nib is not designed to be a bristle, but a felt-tip nib. Bristles is what provides you flexibility. Flexibility of creating thick/thin liners and control. As the nib is felt-tip, you have to control your eye-liner carefully ensuring the tip is used to create your liner and not the sides of the nib. If I make no sense ( I don’t blame you) see for yourself and test it before splurging that £15.

Now… could not resist the ‘freedom’ this eye-liner provides so took the liberty to create this dramatic cat eye-liner look. I have outlined my eyes with Eye Do Eyeliner then filled in the lid. I wanted a bit of shimmer so dusted a little shimmer on top for the evening look.

Belle Amour's Cat-Eye look

Belle Amour, My dramatic cat-eye look with Petrol Blue waterline and black shimmer

Honestly, I did not have to use concealer at all to ‘fake’ the sharp edges/crease lines as it was all done by precise application of the nib which glided on smooth. Remember – to use point of nib only.

Hope you liked this dramatic look and if you own any of the Eyeko range, please comment and leave your feedback below as I would love to hear from you.

With Love,

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My Review of the Lime Crime Velvetine: SuedeBerry

Hey Dolls,

I hope you are all doing well today and enjoying the Vitamin D (hoorah!).

Thought I should do my first product review (on the blog) on a lip product which is hyped about, this is the Lime Crime Velvetine in Suedeberry. It is a matte coral red with a slight orange tone – love colours like these! A beautiful colour and statement lips for summer 2014 me thinks.

The packing: Opaque matte feel instrument.

The packaging: Opaque matte feel instrument.

What I envision when wearing a colour like this – A high clean pony tail, dewy skin with a highlighted face and a pair of shades to accessories. Sometimes makeup can partake and influence what you’ll wear 😉

Full face shot of wearing the Lime Crime Velvetine in SuedeBerry coupled with brown/bronze smokey eyes.

Full face shot of wearing the Lime Crime Velvetine in SuedeBerry coupled with brown/bronze smokey eyes

I have purchased the Velvetines (Suedeberry & Pink velvet) from the UMAE Expo 2014 this year after reading sound reviews, but wanted to trial the product myself as everyone has their own unique experiences; especially for the colour of their skin tone, lip tones or the shade against their skin tone.

As I am South Asian, the natural pigmentation of my lips are dark, so this review is particularly for my dolls who have dark pigmented lips like myself.

Lime Crime Velvetine in SuedeBerry lined with NYX lipliner pencil in Orange.

Lime Crime Velvetine in SuedeBerry lined with NYX lipliner pencil in Orange

In the photos, I have lip-lined my lips with NYX Lipliner Pencil in ‘Orange’.

Now swishing over to the points of what I personally like and dislike about the product:

Que j’aime {What I Love}:

  • Love the colour, perfect for summer and can be worn on its own should you wish for the bare minimal makeup look;
  • I love mattes, this is matte!
  • Smells buttery, soft to wear;
  • Liquid lipsticks are just innovation and creative;
  • The swatch (below) doesn’t wash off my hands – so it is waterproof and ‘touch proof’ {as indicated on their site}.
  • Even if you have dark pigmented lips, just slab foundation over them to get a true shade!
Lime Crime Velvetine

Lime Crime Velvetine swatch

Ce que je déteste {What I dislike}:

  • From the photo below, I still feel you can see my natural lip pigmentation peeping out of the Velvetine. This indicates that this shade is not hyper-pigmented and is quite sheer when applied. Yes, before you think it, I washed foundation across my lips to prime, lip-lined to aid colour intensity, still didn’t work as I thought it would. Therefore, you may have to top-up or wear a full coverage thick foundation on your lips;
  • Depending on how intense you want the colour to appear, you may have to keep reapplying until you are happy with the vibrancy. Even if you dislike this colour anyway, Lime Crime do other shades i.e. Red Velvet which are dark in shade therefore the pigmentation of your lips will always show a different shade;
  • Leaves streaks, so you have to apply consistently.
Can you see my natural lip pigments peeping out? It's the purple that is coming through even after applying 4 times

Lime Crime Velvetines

Overall, I don’t think I will repurchase if it ran out, as I need to use more products to aid the vibrancy which means = more effort. I LOVE coral shades and own plenty – ask my sister (hehe) she can even mime my love for it – it’s my absolute fave! However I am quite disappointed how I have to reapply just to cover the dark pigmentation; I am in awe how cool fair skin toned dolls look on their Youtube tutorials!

If you have dark pigmented lips like me, or any thoughts on this product please do let me know as I would love to hear your feedback.

Belle Amour x

Where to purchase from:

  • Lime Crime Official website:

http://limecrime.com/lips/velvetines-39.html

  • Cocktail Cosmetics:

http://www.cocktailcosmetics.co.uk/prod/lime-crime-clueless-witch-velvetine-collection

  • Love Makeup

http://www.love-makeup.co.uk/lime-crime-velvetines-p-5621.html

  • NYX lipliner Pencil:

http://www.nyxcosmetics.com/p-117-slim-lip-pencil.aspx

With Love,

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Creative Photoshoot – The Vicious Feline.

Fierce, striking and bold look for the high fashion catwalk look.

Fierce, striking and bold look for the high fashion catwalk.

Striking collarbones with sultry bold lips

Striking collarbones with sultry bold lips

For my (first ever!) photoshoot I wanted to learn how flexible I can get with my artist skills. We all want that one shoot where we try and put our skills to a test and this is what I’ve come up with.

The whole cat eye look seemed to be in and one artist or another always have their own respective ways of recreating this feline look.

I wanted to incorporate all bold natural features which for me was the statement arched eyebrows to intricate leopard eyes and daring ombré lips.

The darker colours -blacks/plum purples were used as a contour with a light yellow to orange highlight.

I enjoyed letting myself go (slightly… But could potentially do more damage) and being in touch with my inner creative part which I haven’t met in a very long time.

I hope you like this look just as much as I enjoyed creating it.

Products used:

With Love,

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