What’s In My Make Up Kit?

Warning! This is a long one…

As a Make Up Artist I am forever getting messages about the products I use, how I use them, what I use on clients and what’s in my kit. This post will be an overview of my die hard products that are never too far away from my kit.

My make up and my kit make up are separate so that I know I can literally get up and go the morning of a wedding or day of doing makeups. Not only that, but it’s good to keep your make up and kit make up separate in terms of hygiene. I wouldn’t use an eyeliner on someone that I use on my myself for example, even with cleaning it. Perhaps that’s just me, but I like them separate.

The products I use I like them because I trust them, I have used them for years, they suit a large variety of skin types and are easily packed up. I would love nothing more than to pack up every type of highlighter and bronzer I own but I would need 3 suitcases. It’s important to pick the best of the bunch and keep it compact.

Hygiene
Before you even think about touching someone’s face or going near a make up product please make sure that you have a hygienic set up. In one zip lock bag I always have
– Spray bottle of water
– Spray bottle of alcohol
– Brush cleaner
– Hand sanitiser

You can pick up empty spray bottles anywhere, I grab mine from Boots as you can get different sizes and some even come in packs.
Hand sanitiser is one of those products that can smell so strong and I hate the thought of someone smelling that on my hands so I use The Body Shop Sanitisers in my kit. They have so many wonderful scents, I love the Satsuma one! They are £2.50, in a small enough size that will fit neatly without taking up too much room and they are usually 3 for 2 as well which is amazing!

Tools & Accessories
In addition to your hygiene you should of course have the following in your kit
– Clear travel bags. I get mine from eBay as I didn’t want to spend too much on them as I bag everything! You can also get them from the likes of Boots, Superdrug and even Primark!
– Disposable Mascara Wands – you can again, get these anywhere. I get mine from Mac, because I’m boujee but you can’t them from Sallys, Amazon, eBay, etc
– Sharpener (I sharpen and alcohol pencils before every use)
– Brushes, of course this goes without saying
– Eyelash curlers – I live for the Charlotte Tilbury Life Changing Eyelash Curlers
– Small scissors
– Metal Palette (I have a My Kit Co one – it’s great for mixing foundations)
– Tweezers
– Eyelash glue
– Cotton pads & cotton buds

Skincare
I do be genuinely shocked when I see make up artists start to work and they go straight in with primer or foundation. What. Are. You. Doing? I always use moisturiser, don’t get me wrong it doesn’t have to be anything fancy! Just use some type of skincare before applying, the make up will glide on so much better and the skin will look and feel fresher. Again, I have a zip lock bag with travel size cleanser, toner and moisturiser as well as a pack of wipes. I stock up on the No. 7 wipes when. they have the £5 off vouchers in Boots!

Primer
Some people love primer, some people hate it. I am one of those people that love it and I have many to prove it! For years I used the Smashbox primers but I fell out with them when they stopped doing the blue one! I now use the Make Up For Ever primers. They have one to suit every possible skin type and I do own most of them!

I would highly recommend for anyone even just starting out if you got the Mattifying Primer and the Hydrating Primer as most people can fall into the dry or oily category and at least that way you have something to suit the majority. If you feel like you want to expand The Smoothing primer gets rid of pores like nothing I have ever seen! They do mini 15ml sizes, £14.50 of some of the primers too which is a great way to try them out however, the larger 30ml size, £26 is better value. I have 30ml of the Mattifying, Smoothing, Hydrating, Nourishing and some of the Radiant primers as these are great for different skin tones, then a 15ml of the Redness Correcting Primer. Primers genuinely last me a really long time and unlike foundation where I find everything runs out at once, primers I will only need replacements every few months.

I also have the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter’s. While not technically primers or foundations, they are more of a complexion booster so if a client is asking for nice glowy skin you can bet that they have this all over their face. I currently just have shades 1, 3 and 5 but plan on expanding because it’s just SUCH a beautiful product.

Foundations
I have a hard time committing to one foundation. Like I have a few variations in my kit but can never decide if I want to just have one type of foundation to keep it simple or to cover my back have a few different formulas.
All my foundations are Mac Cosmetics, I trust them and I know how to work with them. I can make them thicker, make them lighter and I know they work well with the primers.
If you are just starting out, to save on expenses get familiar with the foundations you are interested in and get a few colours that you can mix to suit everyone but, please get a shade to suit darker tones. You don’t want to get caught out and not have the right shade for someone!

I have Studio Fix in probably too many shades… Pro Longwear as well as Face & Body. These foundations see me through every type of make up that people want, whether they want something sheer, full coverage, matte or dewy I have got you covered.

Concealer

I have tried concealer after concealer and the best one that I have tried that suits a wide variety of people is the Make Up Revolution Conceal & Define Concealer, £4. Now, there are SO many different colours which is amazing for a brand to have but it doesn’t mean you need to own all of them. One of the key things about being a Make Up Artist is that you need to make do with what you have so just aim to have something light, medium and dark at first. Then you can add to your collection.

Contour
Contour isn’t something that I do on everyone so I don’t see the need in having loads of products for contouring and highlighting so sticking to the basics is key. I am in love with the Technic Cosmetics Colour Fix Cream & Powder Palettes which retail for £6 online but you can grab it cheaper in stores. I recently picked up a few in Franklins for £2.40!
They are great not only from a price point of view but genuinely really good products! I used to use the Anastasia Beverly Hills which are amazing of course too, but I don’t seen too much of a difference to warrant paying £42 compared to £6 or less!

Powder
Loose powder is just a no go for me for generic make ups. They are messy, they get all over your kit and are annoying. I am all about the pressed powder life. Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish Powder, £34 gets my vote every single time and I carry all 3 shades. It is the most perfect powder, I am in love. I actually get excited for the powder stage to watch the powder work it’s magic. It effortlessly sweeps over pores, making the skin look super smooth without looking too ‘powdery’ and ensures an all day lasting finish.

I wouldn’t dream of changing the powder in my kit but I do also have the Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder, £3.99 which is what I used before – to have just in case.

Bronzer
I have a bit of an obsession with bronzer so when you look at my kit this is probably the one messy, unorganised – still in a clear zip bag though – part of my kit. I find new bronzers from different brands and just die over them and I always end up buying two of each. One for me, one for the kit.

I would be lost without my Nars ‘Laguna’, Mac ‘Give Me Sun’ as well as a few other Mineralize Skinfinish’s and my Chanel Soleil de Tan. I do however have Make Up For Ever Pro Bronze Fusion, £30 bronzers in all shades so I know I have at least one bronzer to suit everyone but I can’t stop buying new ones…

Highlighter
For being highlighter obsessed, I am surprised I haven’t got more in my kit. For cream highlighter is just has to be my Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Light Wand ‘Spotlight’, £29.
Powder highlight I tend to go between my BPerfect Mmmmitchell Sub Zero, £32.99 as it is all in a handy palette and plenty of colours to suit different tones. However, I tend to reach for a Mac palette that I curated myself of my favourite Mac Extra Dimension Skinfinish, £25.50 shades ‘Oh Darling’, ‘Whisper of Gilt’ ‘Doubleglam’ and ‘Show Gold.’ De potting them and

Blush
I love blush. One thing I learned was that one blush doesn’t suit everyone. So I have a wide variety of blushers as I find it’s what awakens up a make up and transforms a persons complexion.

I have created Mac palettes as I love the inserts that you can buy that fit 6 blushers in a palette. It makes life so much easier when packing up a kit as there is already so much to pack! I definitely use these the most as they sit so well on top of the other products I use. My favourites and most used are Peaches, Swiss Chocolate, Fleur Power & Melba.

I do also have a few of the Milani Baked Blushers, £10 and Charlotte Tilbury Beach Sticks, £30 as I love these on more mature clients! They give a beautiful glow to the skin without looking dry or caked.

Brows
I am a creature of habit for eyebrows and I like to do a certain style. Of course, on request I will do whatever the client wishes but I like to use pencils and brow gels. I try and stay as far away from thick gels or pomades as much as possible.

I couldn’t possibly use any other brow pencil than the Mac Eyebrow Stylers, £15 they are perfection. They last for ages, are twist up which I love and have really great colours. I do love the NYX Micro Brow Pencils, £9 which are a great alternative!

In terms of brow gel, one of my favourite Charlotte Tilbury products of all time are the Legendary Brow Gels, £18.50. They fluff the hairs up perfectly without looking too fake and ensure that it stays all day.

Eyeshadow
I have gone through many phases of eyeshadow in my kit, from carrying what felt like a hundred single eyeshadows to carrying a hundred palettes. I have since downgraded the palettes I bring with me and keep it as simple as I can. I have my favourite bridal type palettes and my weekend palettes and they seem to cover me for just about everything.
I mainly use
BPerfect Carnival Palette, £39.99 – I cannot remember what I did before this palette came along. Seriously.
– Urban Decay Naked Ultimate Basics Palette
– Mac Cosmetics Palettes that I have made – I live for these
– Mac Cosmetics Pigments, Doll Beauty Pigments, Urban Decay Glitter Liners & Helen E Glitters (these are everything)

Eyeliners
I love gel liner and try to use it above liquid liner when I can. I find it lasts longer and I don’t have to worry about it crumbling. I have a few favourites but I always tend to opt for Inglot’s Gel Liners and I have quite a few colours – you just don’t know what someone will ask for! 77 (Black) and 96 (Brown) are among my most used and of course Inglot’s Duraline is never too far away in case they dry out a little. Side note – if you haven’t purchased Duraline before, I highly recommend you try it. It has so many amazing purposes, but I especially love it for mixing with gel liner.

Mascara
I don’t really worry about the mascara I use as not only do I have the disposable mascara wands but most people want eyelashes applied. I love the Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara, £10.99and this is generally what I’ll have, unless I have received little mini mascaras which are so handy for your kit! Anytime I am buying anything at a make up counter I always ask for mascara samples – if you don’t ask you don’t get!

False Eyelashes
I love all eyelashes, even the most strangely theatrical and dramatic lashes. That being said, typically I am working on bridal party make ups so I aim to keep my lashes on the more natural and fluffy side.
I use individual lashes a lot either on their on or on top of strip lashes and I love the Eylure Individual Lashes as you get small, medium and long lashes in the one box as the majority of other brands you have to buy a whole box of the same size.

For strip lashes, I have Ardell Demi Wispies as you can buy them in packs, so it saves you a little money! I change up my lashes each time depending on what’s on offer but I always go back to the Ardell’s.

Lip Liners
Mac. Rimmel. Charlotte Tilbury. No others will do! I pick up the odd lip liner from other brands here and there but I just use them on myself, I love these brands of lip liners for the kit as they are great on everyone.

I love Mac due to the colour range, Rimmel’s are super creamy and so great on maturer clients and Charlotte Tilbury just because, they are Charlotte Tilbury. Most used/highly recommended shades:
Nude Mac ‘Spice’ & ‘Boldly Bare’ | Rimmel ‘Tiramisu’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Hot Gossip’ & ‘Iconic Nude’
Pink Mac ‘Soar’ & ‘Edge to Edge’ |Rimmel ‘Eastend Snob’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Pillowtalk’ & ‘Pink Venus’
Red Mac ‘Cherry’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Kiss n Tell’
Plum Mac ‘Nightmoth’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Bad Romance’ & ‘Love Trap’

Lipsticks
Similar to the lip liners I have the lipstick in shades to match. I’ll admit, I have an unholy amount of lipsticks but to make it easier to carry I have depotted them and melted them down into palettes. You can get empty lipstick palettes from anywhere but mine are from Mac £2, of course!

Most used/highly recommended shades:
Nude Mac ‘Honeylove’ & ‘Viva Glam II’ & ‘Peachstock’ | Tom Ford ‘Sable Smoke’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Kim KW’ & ‘Pillowtalk’
Pink Mac ‘Creme Cup’ & ‘Snob’ | Estee Lauder ‘Desirable’ & ‘Powerful’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Liv It Up’ & ‘Velvet Underground’
Red Mac ‘So Chaud’ & ‘Ruby Woo’ | Estee Lauder ‘Envious’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Walk of Shame’ & ‘So Marilyn’
Plum Mac ‘Rebel’ | Tom Ford ‘Casablanca’ | Estee Lauder ‘Irresistible’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Love Liberty’

Lip Glosses

I don’t have a whole pile of lip glosses in my kit as I tend to use clear or light glosses over lipsticks. I have recently started using Charlotte Tilbury ‘Collagen Lip Bath’, £25 on everyone as it makes the lips look unbelievably plumped and full as well as deliciously glossy! I have a few odd coloured glosses from all over the place but I use the Lip Bath most often.

Setting Sprays


NYX Matte & Dewy Setting Sprays, £7 are my go to, I love them! For anyone who is oily of course gets the matte spray which helps to tone down shine. Anyone who is dry, yes you guessed it – they get the dewy spray. I recently started using the Iconic London Setting Sprays, £20.50 but they are extremely dewy and only for those that like a good glow!

This was believe it or not, a quick overview of what is in my kit. If you have any questions about anything I use or if you use something in your kit for clients I would love to hear about it – maybe it’s something I could use myself!

You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Amy xo








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BPerfect Cosmetics Stacey Marie MUA Palette

In an age where there are hundreds of thousands of palettes out there it is rare to come across something new and different.  Not often does a make up palette come along these days containing something that actually makes me squeal.  Enter Stacey Marie MUA’s collab with BPerfect Cosmetics.  The Carnival Palette retails for £39.99 and contains a wealth of shades from bright blues and pinks to deep purples and yellows.  Boasting 24 shades and 2 highlighters this palette is nothing short of amazing.

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Stacey created this look for her demo at The Make Up Festival

Firstly a little background on BPerfect Cosmetics, a beauty brand that stormed on to the scene in 2013 that was created by Brendan McDowell.  Based in Belfast, Brendan aspired to become a creative, stand out brand oh my, did he succeed.  The brand is now available in over 1200 stockists in UK and Ireland, and has recently been made available on Beauty Bay – YAY – and for you local babes Paddy McGurgan’s Make Up Pro Store is now stocking the Carnival Palette.  If you don’t know who Stacey Marie is then you need to get yourself onto her Instagram and just look at some of her amazing work.  She can do things to an eyelid space that I never thought possible.  I am so happy that this amazing brand and amazing Make Up Artist have teamed up together and the palette is such a success.

I was invited to attend Stacey Marie’s Launch in Medicare, Forestside Belfast and had an absolute ball watching Stacey do her thing, created some masterpiece eye looks.  I was also kindly gifted the palette and haven’t been able to put it down since I got it.  I was so shocked at the payoff of all the colours as normally I find with bright colours they fade away to nothing when blended but I was pleasantly surprised at this palette.

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I used the shades Guilty, Lit, Wasted, Keen, Pink Me and Liqour to create this look inspired by another amazing Make Up Artist Keilidh Cashell, AKA Keilidh MUA.  You can find her look in her Instagram here.

Even though I have spoken mostly about the amazing bright colours it definitely appeals to someone who would want a natural look out of it too.  It’s also a fantastic palette for someone who would want to start going freelance or starting out as a make up artist as I can’t say it enough – it is just is an amazing palette.

Have you tried it yet? I would love to hear your thoughts!

You can follow me on my social media here

Instagram | Facebook | Twitter

 

10 Best Beauty Buys Under £10

There’s no such feeling like purchasing a product that didn’t break the bank and it turning out to be one of the best things you’ve ever bought.  We automatically think that if it’s more expensive then it must be good, but what about all those cheap and cheerful products you pick up from your local Boots or Superdrug?  They are amazing for the price!  Don’t get me wrong, some items are just not up to scratch and I have found that out the hard way!  However, some products are the best I have tried and from eyeshadow to lipstick to foundation these beauties are all under £10!

Make Up Revolution Foundation Stick, £5

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If you have been lucky enough to get your hands on this foundation then you will  know how outstanding it is for only £5!  After Make Up Revolution broke the internet with their concealer which was named as a dupe for Tarte’s Shape Tape it was no wonder that they produced such a high class foundation for an amazing price.

With 18 shades you should quite easily be able to find your perfect colour.  Creating a dewy finish your skin is sure to look healthy and glowing all day long.  I love a full coverage foundation but also love a glowing finish and it can be hard to get a foundation that offers you both, but this one does!  I have several shades as I use a darker one for contouring (when I can be bothered) and sometimes would use a lighter one for highlighting also.  They are so creamy it makes putting on your foundation so easy and they blend like an absolute dream no matter how you apply it, be it your fingers, sponge or brush.

Rimmel Stay Matte Finishing Powder, £3.99

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If you know me at all or have been following my blog for awhile now then you will know how much I love and use this powder.  It sounds ridiculous but cheaper powders tend to feel more powdery.  Duh, right?  But this Rimmel powder still manages to leave the skin feeling silky without feeling clogged with too much product.  It always stays in my handbag for little emergency touch ups and with up to 5 hours wear it has me good to go for the rest of my day.

Bourjois Bronzer Maxi Range Delight Bronzer, £8.99

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I love a big old bronzer.  Bronzers seem to be getting more and more compact these days, almost morphing into contour pans but this Bourjois bronzer is a fab size which not only will it last a long time but your brush won’t get ruined swiveling around a small pan.  It’s definitely a warmer colour which suits for a more tanned look making it one of my go tos for Summer!

Sleek Solstice Palette, £9.99

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I know, I know.  This must be the third or even the fourth time that this palette has featured in my blog but it is that good.  Aside from the fact that you can get 4 highlighters in this palette for less than £10, the product itself is amazing.  With a variation of textures there is something in this palette for everyone, from the two baked powders to the silky shimmer powder you’ll be sure to be extra highlighted.  You really need the tiniest amount or else you will end up like a moon beam.

The Body Shop Brow & Liner Kit, £10

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Back in the day when I used to work in The Body Shop this was my ultimate favourite brow product and to this day still is!  It has a powder and two powders which are great for creating extra dimension to the brow, perfect for when you want your brow to be a little softer.  It comes with a firm double ended brush allowing for precise application and they also sell a brow gel at £10 which is great as well!  A must have for brow upkeep and a bargain too.

Rimmel Lipstick, £5.49

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I am a longtime fan of Rimmel’s lipsticks so it’s no surprise that these appear on my list.  Extremely moisturising with a vast range of colours you are sure to find something that suits.  The Kate Moss Shade 3 is one of my favourite lipsticks ever, and as you can see from my What’s in my make up bag? post it’s never too far from me.

Make Up Geek Eyeshadow, £4.95

MUG eyeshadows neutrals

Available from Beauty Bay these eyeshadows are sure to make a hell of a difference to your makeup bag.  With an outstanding array of colours it’s easy to pick exactly what you want.  From beautiful warm colours like Peach Smoothie and Chickadee to the nicest brown shade I have ever seen, Cocoa Bear.  Typically with cheaper eyeshadows it can be a struggle to blend them out but Make Up Geek have their formula nailed and they blend like a dream. With just a few shades you can create a fabulous look!

Maybelline Master Precise Liquid Liner, £5.99

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Eye love this liner.  Sorry not sorry for the pun.  This liner is a brilliant addition to my makeup bag and is up there with one of my new favourites.  The tip always holds pigment and therefore never dries out and creates even lines on even the shakiest of eyelids.  This pen is great if you are looking to be a little more creative with your lines and it creates such sharp lines, perfect for editorial.

Make Up Revolution Blush Palettes, £4

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Yes, yes you did read that right – £4.  Hot Spice is my palette of choice and I was shocked at how pigmented they were.  The fact that there’s 8 shades in the palette for £4 was what made me think they would be terrible.  Honestly, no they are amazing.  I’ll be honest I throw my brush through all the shades and hope for the best because they are all fairly similar.  There is a selection of mattes and shimmers perfect for all occasions.

Nyx Dewy Long Lasting Setting Spray, £7 

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I don’t know how much I believe in setting sprays but once this is sprayed over my makeup I feel instantly energised and cooled down.  It can be a stressful ordeal applying makeup, especially when you are in a rush and I love the little spray at the end to finish it all off.  Available in Dewy Finish and Matte Finish there’s something for everyone.

Updating your makeup bag doesn’t always have to break the bank and hopefully you have seen something on this list that you would love to try or have already.  Let me know your thoughts on these best beauty buys for under £10!

 

Best Websites For Buying Makeup

As a self confessed make up lover I have found the perfect way to successfully shop for my make up but what about you guys who are watching these YouTube videos and reading these blogs about products and have no idea where or how to buy them?

I have compiled a list of the best websites to shop online for your perfect beauty picks!

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https://www.beautybay.com/

This website is my immediate go to for shopping as it holds a host of beauty brands that you can’t get on the high street or even in your local department stores.  From Anastasia Beverly Hills to Sigma to Morphe to Zoeva it has it all!  Before Beauty Bay came along it was hard (and expensive) to get these amazing products but it is so easy.

You can view your products by brand and make up category making it easier to see what you are looking for and pick up a few bargains on the way.  Speaking of bargains, they have a sale on now GO GO GO!

Not only is this a fantastic and easy to use website but you get free delivery with a £15 spend.  I don’t know about you but I could spend £15 in 15 seconds so that’s not a problem for me.  This is great as it appeals to even those on a budget.

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https://www.cultbeauty.co.uk

When I can’t find what I need on Beauty Bay my next stop is Cult Beauty.  Serving you brands from Huda Beauty to Becca Cosmetics to Lime Crime to Farsali (you know that serum Instagrammers are dripping all over their faces?).  They also sell some of the same things that Beauty Bay has so if you are enquiring about prices be sure to check on both as you may save yourself some £’s.

What I like about Cult Beauty is that on their main page they have got such great blog posts that are interesting and entertaining to read (https://www.cultbeauty.co.uk/blog) Not only that but you can shop a trends section to stay up to date with what’s hot in the beauty industry which is extremely helpful because I feel like the trends change weekly and can be hard to keep up.  God forbid I put on a gloss when it’s back to ‘all matte everything.’

PS. There’s a sale on Cult Beauty too!

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http://www.spacenk.com/uk

Us fortunate souls in the Belfast area are extremely lucky to have Space NK on our doorstep but for those who don’t or are lazier (me) then the website is perfection! What started out as a single store in Covent Garden has now graduated into 60 stores over UK & Ireland is now home to over 70 brands. Carrying some of the world’s most amazing, elusive brands Space NK provides a shopping experience like no other.  From Hourglass to Rodin (oh please tell me you have tried this brand?!  Their Jasmine & Neroli Luxury Body Oil is to die for…)

 

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http://www.birchbox.com

So this is primarily a subscription service that sends subscribers five selected samples of makeup, skincare, haircare, etc.  For £10 a month/ £60 for 6 months/ £110 for 12 months you get a box of goodies that are tailored to suit you.  I love this website, it’s such a great idea to get to try products you never would have normally.  Plus, technically you’re only buying one thing, so it’s not as bad as buying 5 things.  You can also purchase products from this website like the others but this one is all about the special boxes that come every month.  I love them, it’s like getting a little surprise sent to you in the mail!

In fact if you order a box in January you get a free Pop Beauty Eyeshadow Trio with a Spectrum brush – just use the code EYES at checkout – YAY!

There are so many sites that you can use but these are a selection of my favourites and the ones that I use all the time.  Way more than I probably should.  These sites are perfect for those amazing products that you can’t get in normal stores, or if you just hate going into places like Debenhams, Boots, etc then they are perfect for you.

Happy shopping!

 

New Year, Same Me

Aloha all you beautiful people!

I am sitting here happy as a clam all toasty and wrapped up in an extra layer of fat that I put on over Christmas and just thinking about the coming year and everything that it’s going to have in store.  With 2018 just around the corner it got me thinking about all of those New Year Resolutions that we make and then worry ourselves over to inevitably not stick to and feel horrible about ourselves which is why

my new years resolution this year is to not make a resolution

I am positively giddy about the fact that I am not going to starve myself for a week in order to attempt losing weight.  I am over the moon that I am not going to beat myself up that I haven’t learned a new skill or taken up a hobby.  I am on cloud nine that I am going to continue to drink just a little too much at the weekends therefore ruining my Sundays.  I am ecstatic that I am going to have the first take out of 2018 and not feel a pick of guilt because I said I would cut down.

For years now I have busted my balls trying to become a ‘better person’ in trying to stick to these ridiculous goals and then spending the following 10 months hating myself that I never completed or stuck to them.  Well, enough is enough!  No longer will I waste my time on these stupid resolutions in order for me to feel down on myself.

Don’t get me wrong, I plan on accomplishing some things this coming year but none that I will write down and beat myself up about if I don’t change.  For example, I really ought to start driving, clear out the pile of clothes I am in denial about, eat a little healthier and maybe put away some money in a savings account.  To me those are like – life changes for a better state of mind, not a resolution that I need to force myself to change.  I find resolutions very unhealthy and a lot of emphasis gets placed on them, especially at this time of year.  It’s basically like saying to yourself ‘you weren’t good enough this year, let’s try again for next year.’  Of course there are some bad habits that we all would like to shake but again, I am not going to get myself down in the dumps about it.

If you are someone that loves making resolutions as a way of trying to ‘improve’ yourself then go for it – Godspeed – however, I am not one of those people.  I can’t wait to wake up on New Year’s Day hungover, crawl out of bed and straight for the Diet Coke and take away menu because I am not placing myself on some strange diet that requires I eat a cube of cheese three times a day.

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I am looking forward to maturing slightly next year.  I feel like the year I turn 27 I really need to get my ducks in a row.  That being said, 2017 I moved in with Joel in our cute little rented house in Belfast (my stuff takes up 95% of it, his 5%) and I have accomplished a lot this year.  Can’t wait to see what 2018 has to offer and I can’t wait to not have to force it with New Years Resolutions.

Happy New Year!

Amy xo

The Best False Eyelashes

From light and fluffy to thick and dramatic I have compiled a list of the best eyelashes on the market to make the most of your eye make up.

It may as well be scientific fact that all eye make up looks look better with a pair of eyelashes applied.  Whether you are a novice when it comes to picking lashes or even applying them then hopefully this post will help.  With so many styles and variety or prices it can be daunting selecting a pair that best suits to amp up your lashes.

Before I even get into the best eyelashes, it’s important that you know how best to apply them or at least the basics of applying.  I always find it best to use tweezers to remove the lashes from the packaging and then lay them on your eyelashes to measure if they fit or not.  If not then grab some small scissors and trim the band – NEVER trim the hairs on the lashes or you’ll end up with weird looking stumps.  Using eyelash glue place some on the lash band and most importantly, wait for the glue to become tacky – about 30-60 seconds is more than enough.  Don’t try to stick it on right away or it’ll become a hot mess!  When the lash is ready then using tweezers or a lash applicator tool apply to your lashes while looking down into the mirror.  I always find it best to put the lash on and put pressure onto the middle of the eyelashes and then to push down the outside, then the inner corner.  Once the lash is applied use your tweezers to press your own lashes with the false eyelashes to move them closer together.  Regarding mascara, it’s personal preference when you put it on.  I prefer to use mascara first so as not to destroy the lashes and you can get longer out of them.

I know, I know it is very easy to write down how to apply them but when it comes to the actual application of them it’s much harder to get the hang of.  When you do get the hang of applying them, you will be thankful!  Your eye make up will never look better…

Ardell Demi Wispies £5.49 2299737

These eyelashes are one of the first pairs that I ever became obsessed with.  They are a staple in my Make Up Kit for clients as they perfectly suit every need and every eye shape.  They are the ‘goldilocks’ lash in that they are just right and are easily stacked (double up the lash) if you want a fuller look.  The lash band itself is incredibly lightweight which makes for an easier application.  Definitely a great starter lash and not as expensive as others which makes for a great ‘practice’ lash too.  The great thing about Ardell lashes is that they come with a mini Duo Glue in the pack.  Duo Glue is one of the more popular glues on the market and is the glue that I personally use.

http://www.boots.com/ardell-fashion-lash-demi-wispies-false-eyelashes-10099662

Eyelure Naturalites ‘107’ £5.40

downloadConsidering these eyelashes were the very first pair I ever used I couldn’t not put them into the list.  The are very full straight lashes with a slight curl on the end. The lashes themselves although fuller are still extremely lightweight so you won’t have drooping tired eyes.  The lashes create a cat eye look which is great for a smoky eye or even a winged liner look.  Again lash glue is included however, I prefer to use the Duo Glue so might be worthwhile picking up a tube of this as it is sold on it’s own.  I don’t reach for these lashes as often as I used to however, not everyone likes the wispy fullness of other lashes and these are a perfect alternative!

http://www.boots.com/eylure-naturalites-false-eyelashes-107-10007605

https://www.beautybay.com/accessories/ardell/duolashadhesive/

Red Cherry Lashes ‘Stevi #43’ £4.49 

41fj5YYTwgL._SX355_.jpgNot only are these an absolute bargain of an eyelash but they are high quality and offer more of a ‘natural’ look.  Similar to the previous two lashes mentioned the Stevi lashes offer graduated length so they look fluttery and feminine.  I find these lashes very comfortable to wear and can be reused so long as they are looked after and removed properly.  They don’t however come with glue hence the lesser price point however lash glue as previously mentioned, is easy to pick up.  A lot of beauty bloggers, you tubers, etc tend to use these eyelashes as because again they go with every eye look and even look great on their own.

Red Cherry Lashes Style #43 (Stevi)

House of Lashes ‘Iconic’ £14

house-of-lashes-iconic-1Bold.  Spiky.  Dramatic.

If that’s what you want from your eyelashes then you have come to the right place.  Although they are spikier they still create a very soft look while still being a dramatic lash.  These lashes are extremely popular with beauty You Tubers and you can get a good bit of wear out of them.  They are more expensive, but more luxurious.  Also the House of Lashes lash glue is amazing!  The glue is latex free and waterproof which makes this a perfect go to for those with more sensitive eyes with a tendancy with watery eyes.

https://www.beautybay.com/accessories/houseoflashes/iconic/

Lilly Lashes ‘Mykonos’£30

mykanos_round_yes_copy_grandeThese. Are. My. Favourite.  You can use these 20-25 times and are real 3D Mink Lashes which is why they are on the pricier side.  That being said, I think they are excellent value for money!  These lashes are flirty, fluffy and give a full finish which lifts every single eye look and transform it into an Instagram worthy look.  They are definitely on the more dramatic side but because of the fluffiness they still look normal.  Dramatic lashes are grand so long as they are fluffy, try to avoid any that are all the same length otherwise you’ll end up with caterpillar eyelashes – not a good look!  Fluffy is the way forward.

That brings my list to an end as I have a disgusting amount of eyelashes.  I hope this list helps if you are struggling to pick the perfect lash for your peepers as it took me years to realise what lashes worked and what ones don’t!

Happy lashing!

Amy xo

 

 

Favourite Make Up For Ever Products

Aloha, beautiful people,

Today’s topic will be on the beauty of the brand MAKE UP FOR EVER.  Not a lot of people know about the brand, other than the odd stick foundation being used by their favourite You Tubers.  Considering a new counter opened up in Debenhams, Belfast and it is where I work, I thought it would only be fair that I share a little bit about the products and tell you my favourites (all views are my own!)

First up, a little background on the company.  MAKE UP FOR EVER is a brand that was created in 1984 by an amazing lady – Parisian Dany Sanz.  Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy has since taken over the brand however, Dany still plays a crucial role in the inner workings of the brand.  MAKE UP FOR EVER is a brand that allows their users to be creative and play with make up in a way they never have before.  They provide the tools and products for make up professionals and make up fanatics alike.

verticalIn the 1980’s there were very few products available for the working professional and those that were actually available only came in certain shades.  Dany took it upon herself to create her own products that she could use –  and MAN did that take off!  Dany got so many requests from fellow makeup artists and students that she opened up a boutique in Paris.  MAKE UP FOR EVER was born.

Fast forward 33 years and MAKE UP FOR EVER is available in 52 countries and is a widely accredited make up brand.  To have a counter in Belfast is a real treat as it is one of only 3 stores in the whole of Ireland, the others being in Cork and Dublin.  I currently work, as I have said in the store in Debenhams and it has been amazing so far.  The counter opened in June and has created a major buzz already!  The products reputation and popularity allowed us to jump straight in with our customers and we have had the most creative nearly 6 months –  which you will know if my Instagram is anything to go by (@cosmetics.junkiee)

I am going to stop giving you the run down on the company and get on to the good bits that you fellow make up junkies will be gasping for!  These are simply a list of my top picks from the counter and all opinions on the products do remain my own!

PRIMERS

Pictured are a select few of the primers that MAKE UP FOR EVER carry but I have pictures my favourites to use.  The Mattifying, Smoother and Hydrating Primers are my immediate go tos and actually have them in my kit for freelancing.  They do exactly what they say on the tin and you have GOT to appreciate the simplicity of them.  As a Make Up Artist I want something quick and easy that I can put on my clients so I can move on to the base but you don’t have to be a Make Up Artist to enjoy these products.  That’s the beauty of them!  do not be sucked in by primers that claim to do 100 things to your skin.  Take the Mattifying Primer for example – can you guess what it does?  Mattifies.  The Hydrating?  Brilliant,  great for dry skin (my personal favourite.)

Also pictured we have the Redness Correcting,  Nourishing and the Radiant Primer.  These I don’t tend to reach for as often however, they are fantastic to have on hand.  I have a touch of rosacea and use the redness primer, this is also another staple in my kit.  The Nourishing is great if you are a bit of an inbetween skin type and you want something that covers all bases ie.if you aren’t overly oily  or aren’t overly dry  but would still like a primer!  MAKE UP FOR EVER has quite a few Radiant Primers however, I reach for the pink one more often as I personally find it great for brightening up dull skin and this is a common concern in good ol’ Northern Ireland. *retails £14.20-£22.50*

FOUNDATION

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We have a good few foundations under our belts here at MAKE UP FOR EVER however, the one that resonates with everyone is most definitely the multiple award winning Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation.  If I had £1 for how many times I get asked about this amazing foundation a day I could probably buy one!  It’s the most recognisable foundation on the counter and for good reason.  I describe it as the Goldilocks foundation in that, it’s ‘just right’ for everything.  Coverage? Just right.  Creaminess?  Just right.  Colour?  Just right.  It’s thee go to medium coverage foundation with a natural finish on the market. It just happens to photograph beautifully as it was designed specifically for film and TV also so it is perfect for that selfie!  Ever wanted to look like your favourite on screen celeb? Well look no further!  Even when I am freelancing I use it as it suits all skin types, especially considering I have so many amazing primers to go underneath.  Of course if medium everything isn’t your bag then there are plenty of other foundations at MAKE UP FOR EVER that will suit you, so you are best popping in to see one of us and we can talk you through them.  *retails at £30*

CONCEALER

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Pictured here is my favourite concealer of all time.  I was exhausted from trying out concealers that could do it all as in, cover dark circles under the eyes without settling into lines but also be heavy enough that it will cover up those demon blemishes.  After years of searching,  awhile ago I finally came across it!  Behold, the again award winning Ultra HD Invisible Cover Concealer.  Not only is it a perfect concealer but it just so happens to be a fab match to the foundation.  The extensive shade range will cater to every skin need and I have collected quite a few colours as  I tend to contour slightly with this product as well.  I like that it comes in a tube as a lot of concealers that twist like a pen do my head in and any others that pump out I always waste so much product.  The concealer may seem small at 7ml however, I cannot stress enough how little you need!  A must have in my kit and on my face and for my customers – if you are ever in visiting the counter and are served by me I guarantee I end up talking about this!  *retails at £20.50*

POWDER

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You can’t never have seen this before?  If you haven’t – have you been living under a rock?  The Ultra HD Loose Powder – One of the more controversial products on the counter as there are amazing reviews and some not so amazing reviews.  The product itself was recently updated to leave an ultra fine powder that to me almost feels like Talc x1000.  It is the softest powder on earth.  Honestly, go into a counter and tip some on your hand and I swear you will never have tried a powder like it.  If that’s what it can do to your face then imagine what it will do for your eyes!  The more negative reviews boast that it gave really bad flashback and can leave the face very powdery.  From personal experience, this hasn’t happened to me however, there is a right and a wrong way to apply it.  If you apply too much with the wrong kind of brush for example, it will make your foundation a little lighter.   This powder works best in small doses and therefore will last you ages, so just be sure to ask advice when you are in store to get the best out of your products.  This works amazing under the eyes also if you suffer from creasing!  *retails at £24.50*

BRONZER

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SO, Pro Bronze Fusion Bronzer.  Honestly, I hated this bronzer at first.  I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t see the orange stripes on my face anymore until somebody complimented my subtle glow when I was wearing it and I was like ‘ohhhh’.  So when I want a subtle bronzed look that I can build up, I use the MAKE UP FOR EVER bronzer in the shade 20M.  I recently used it at the lastfew weddings I did and it also photographed beautifully.  Plus, Jamie Genevieve uses it… So I use it.  I would recommend a very soft brush to apply as I used a more dense brush and it lifted off too much product and left me grey looking.  You know that grey cheek look? Not cute.  I recommend the MAKE UP FOR EVER brush in #128.

ARTIST FACE COLOR

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Oh my GOD I love these!  I use them every day!  There’s a vast selection of blushers, highlighters both matte and luminous and contour shades.  They are magnetic and you can either stick them in a palette you already have or purchase the case.  Anything that is compact and refillable gets my vote, especially as someone who requires everything to be small and organised.  This is brilliant for people who travel also because it has everything!  This one is actually the Jessie J Limited Edition palette but it contains all of my favourite colours from the range.  I use it for highlighter, contour and blush however, there ain’t nothing stopping you peeps from filling it up with all blush or whatever you want!  Each retails at £18 however the Jessie J Limited Edition palette is £54 – which is amazing!

BROWS

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MAKE UP FOR EVER aren’t known massively for their brow products, you know like Benefit or Anastasia Beverly Hills are, etc.  but they damn well should be!  I fell in love instantly with the Aqua Brow, which is like pomade in a tube which I prefer than a little jar as it doesn’t dry out at all!  There really is something or everyone with the brows here, I go through phases of which I prefer.  Today I used the Brow Pencil with the Brow Liner to create a fluffier brow and when I want a more sculpted brow I will use the Aqua Brow.  When you buy the Aqua Brow it comes in the cutest little set!  It has a pouch with a small spoolie and small angled brush – a make up bag must have!  One thing I always use on my brows regardless of what makeup look I am doing or whether I am even wearing makeup is the Brow Gel.  It instantly makes me feel better about myself, also considering my brows are feral, it keeps them at bay! *retails from £14-£33*

DIAMOND POWDER

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Glitters will come… glitters will go but holy crap this glitter I will keep repurchasing!  There are so many beautiful colours, I can’t cope.  The glitter sticks on itself, without the need of an adhesive which comes in really handy and doesn’t leave eye makeup looking chunky!  The pot seems small but you need so little of it that it will last you ages – plus it’s really nice to look at!  Some advice, please don’t keep it in a make up bag as if it opens everything will be covered! *retails at £18.50*

AQUA XL PAINTS

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These wouldn’t be something that you would run to pick up but the range of these face paints are amazing.  They can be used on the eyes, lips and face and are so versatile.  I used them a lot over Halloween creating different looks and they are surprisingly easy to use.  I can recommend MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Seal to go along with them as it’s like a mixing agent, so it thins out the cream so it applies easier.  Pictured are my two favourites to use as a cream highlight, they are so beautiful!

LIP

Liiiiips – who doesn’t love lipstick?  It’s the one accessory I carry around in my handbag and am probably never seen without.  I cleared out my handbag yesterday and I took out 11 lipsticks and about 5 lip liners.  These are some of my favourite colours from MAKE UP FOR EVER’s lip range – we have the Artist Rouge Creme lipstick M300 and the Aqua Lip Waterproof Liner in 8C.  The lip is an amazing creamy matte that does NOT move.  If you are looking for that all day lipstick then yaaaay I found it!  I have also pictured the latest launch of the Artist Liquid Matte (L-R) 101, 105, 301, 401, 501.  The world has fallen in love with liquid lipsticks and while they can be a little on the drier side these liquid lipsticks aren’t!  Now, when they hit the like, 8 hour wear mark they can be a little dry and I normally take them off and reapply and I am good to go!  So 8 hours out of one application of a liquid lipstick is pretty good going!  They are seriously creamy also when you apply them which is an added bonus!

SO ANYWAY, that’s quite enough rambling about my favourite products!  What are your favourite products, if any from MAKE UP FOR EVER?  I would love to hear! Drop a comment or send me a message!  If you are in the Belfast/Northern Ireland area and are wanting to get your make up done – YOU CAN.  Come in and see us in Debenhams, Belfast to have a look at our amazing products and book for a make up application or a make up lesson.  See below for prices which are redeemable on products on the day!

Eyes/Base – £25

Full Make Up – £45

Make Up Lesson – £45

Can’t wait to see you all chicas!

Amy xo