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Saturday, 31 December 2011

My New Sigma Makeup Brushes!!

As I showed in my previous post on some of my Christmas presents, I very excitingly got Sigma brushes. I am going to make a shocking confession - before these I did not actually own, or use, any make up brushes (except for a super cheap blusher brush and a Sephora powder brush I bought, oh, ten years ago??). I didn't really feel like I needed them, until I read a post on Amy's blog Beauty Boutique about Sigma brushes. I instantly knew I NEEDED them in my life. And when there was free international shipping on Black Friday, I knew this was a sign!! I ordered the Sigma Essential Kit which contains 12 professional make up brushes (Five for face, seven for eyes).

 
 
It would have been awesome if I could review each brush here, but I've not actually used them yet. Ha. The reason for that is it comes with this little card.
 

Being a complete make up brush novice, I hadn't anticipated on having to wash my brushes before I even used them! It was a few days before I got to the shops to buy some baby shampoo to clean them in, so that's why I haven't used them yet.

But more on that in a moment! First, a wee introduction to these lovely brushes: they all come in a protective plastic wrapper, and the big brushes also have little covers for their heads.


They are sooo soft and lovely! Here are the eye brushes:


And the face brushes:


Some brushes are natural hair, some are synthetic and some are a combination of both. Each brush has a number and its basic use on the handle, e.g.

And if you need more info, it also comes with a super handy mini brush guide!


I am sooo excited to start using these, heard such good things about Sigma!

So, back to the washing fiasco. I wasn't altogether sure how to wash my brushes, so I went for this little routine:
  1. Put a blob of shampoo on my hand
  2. Wet brush under tap with luke warm water (don't let water touch handle)
  3. Swish the brush into the shampoo and swirl it around until it foams
  4. Rinse under the water until all the shampoo rinses out
  5. Blot dry with a paper towel
  6. Reshape and leave to dry
All freshly washed

I'd heard not to sit them upright as the water runs back into the handle and can rot it or dislodge the glue and make the bristles fall out. I'd also heard not to lay them on their sides as some water can still go back in. So, upside down it would have to be!


The bigger brushes were easy enough because I just put their brush covers on them and put them in a cup, but the smaller brushes involved me making a contraption out of bobbles and a hairband and hanging them from my wardrobe.
 
It's been about 24 hours since my first brush cleaning adventure and I was really wanting to use them for tonight... hurry up and DRY!!
 
I'll do Part Two of this post soon hopefully, with my review of how awesome (or not) I think the brushes actually are and also how useful they are so stay tuned. =p
 
Hope you all have a fabulous Hogmanay tonight!! Can't wait to read all the posts about it and can't wait to wear my sequin dress y'all voted for here!
 
Have you tried Sigma brushes? Did I clean my brushes the right way?? Do make up brushes really make a difference to your make up routine?
Let me know!!
 
~ Lauren

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Christmas: Could I Be More Lucky??

Hope you all had an amaaaazing Christmas!! ^_^

I wasn't sure if I wanted to do a post showing my Christmas pressies, cause I always feel I'm unbelievably spoiled and some people might think I'm showing off, I don't know...

I get really, REALLY excited about Christmas. We always do the same thing (mostly) and it's just my mum, dad, sister and I for most of the day before my boyfriend comes up at night. We visit my grandparents on Boxing Day.

I still get up early, have a stocking, am not allowed downstairs until I'm given permission and we open presents one at a time so we can all see and appreciate each gift! Christmas dinner this year was steaks, and then games all night! I just LOVE it.

As a family, we got a 3D TV for the living room! Not really tried it properly yet, but we have Harry Potter DVDs coming in 3D so looking forward to it. We have 7 3D glasses so we can all have our own colour lol. Here's the TV and my mum and dad modelling their glasses:
click to enlarge
Hahha.

I also got a ton of cat related gifts (my friends and family know me so well!). Here's a pic of some general presents I got (on the left) and my kitty themed presents (right)!
click to enlarge

Some things to mention: gorgeous jumper and cat print dress, cat egg cup and cosy, book on beauty blogging (!), Sims 3 Pets (that'll be me busy from now til next Christmas =p).

You may also have noticed my beeeeaaaauuuutiful Claireabella!
This is hand made by Claire herself, and the batch I ordered this from (on behalf of my bf obv) sold out in ten seconds!! I'm very lucky. Designed it all myself - do you see the wine, phone and kitty?? Love it!

You may also have noticed my brand new camera! My old camera was only a 7.2mp and this one is 14.1 so I'm very excited!! It's so pretty and pink too. <3

For some reason I didn't put my new knee high boots in, but here's a sort-of pic:
They look really high actually, but they're not cause it's a built in platform. They're really comfy! At least that's what I'm telling people. =p

Here's some of the beauty goodies I got:

I needed new straighteners, but GHDs are so expensive. Well, here's a fact for you. If you search in Amazon for straighteners and sort them by highest customer review first, number one is Babyliss Pro 230 Elegance and number two is GHD! So after a lot of research, I asked for the Babyliss ones and they are AWESOME.

As you can see, I got Soap and Glory goodies, Front Cover stuff, travel hair straighteners, etc! The Models Own ones were a total sursprise, sooo nice, and I was counting down the days til Christmas so I could get my Sigma Complete Set.

Here's me playing about with some of the Models Own colours:

I also got a lot of other gorgeous things, like a Swarovski necklace, cute underwear and jammies, and chocolates and wine! I also got a 'voucher' for a cut, colour and my next set of extensions put in. Sooo lucky!!

I had an awesome day, with lots of laughter, fun, great food and alcohol! Here's me making a Kir Royale(or is it an Imperial Royale?)

Hope you all had as awesome a day as I did! I'm sorry if this post was too much, please let me know cause I'm worried in case I come across badly. =/

What did you all get? What was your favourite present? Did you get Christmas money, and what are you buying with it?
Let me know.

~ Lauren



Friday, 23 December 2011

Spread Christmas Cheer - Volunteer!

Just a little quickie today because I'm busy busy busy for Christmas!

Firstly, THANK you for getting me to over 200 followers! So happy to have managed that in ten weeks, you guys are AWESOME.

But the real reason of my post is to remind you guys how lucky we all are. We all blog about the latest beauty products and the 'must have' fashion item and see something on someone's blog and HAVE to buy it... Sometimes it's good just to stop and remember that not everyone is that lucky.

Sorry for being so serious, but please consider dropping your change into a charity can, or signing up to a charity. Some of these charities are as little as a pound a week! Seriously, that's nothing. Even better - volunteer! I know times are hard just now and a lot of people are out of work, USE this time! It not only helps others, it helps yourself as well as it's such an amazing feeling to be making a difference.

I volunteer at an animal shelter, and it gives me seeerious endorphins! I love it. I try to go twice a week, and my job is a 'kitty cuddler'. Here's some of the cats I have the privilage of spending time with:
Click to enlarge


And here's a little video of the cutest cats ever, Stuart and Charlie (please ignore my 'baby' voice!!).

video


On a less serious note, I hope you're all looking forward to Christmas and spending time with friends and family! I'm sooo excited! Here's my tree:



And here's my festive nails!

(they look really messy here but are actually really cute... even on my pathetic wee nails!!)

And here's some photos from my trip to the Edinburgh Market:

Mulled wine, ferris wheel, chocolate covered strawberries

Cocktails and cider!

Have an amaaaazing Christmas guys!!

Merry Christmas!

~ Lauren

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

I Picked a Dress! (Christmas Night Out)

Hi guys! Just a quick HI! to my new followers and I am super excited to be nearly at 200 followers. I'd love to be there by the end of the year, so if you enjoy reading my blog please recommend me, I'd hugely appreciate it. ^_^

So I had an amazing response to my dress dilemma post, where I couldn't decide which dress to keep for my Christmas night out. The overwhelming consensus was either number 1 or 4...



So I decided to keep both! I'm saving the sequin one for Hoggers (NYE for all you non-Scottish folk). But today I thought I'd share some of my photos from my Christmas Night Out!

I also have some exciting news (not really). Those of you who follow me on Twitter will already know this, but I have gone to the DARK SIDE! Yes, I am no longer platinum blonde. If you glance up to the right, you will see the hair colour I usually have - preeeetty blonde. I've always been blonde, ever since I was a little tot...

I know, what a photo!! Don't have a huge selection of little me on my comp tho so that will have to do. =p

My sister is like a chameleon of hair colour, she has naturally dark hair but has been everything from white blonde to black over the years...


... And it's made me a bit jealous! So last year I tried dying my hair brown.

... It didn't last long, an soon I was back to platinum blonde!

But this time I was determined to go a bit darker properly and went to my hair extensionist so she could colour it and match my extensions at the same time. I asked for golden blonde, like Blake's...




... this photo (that I took quickly for Twitter!) doesn't really show the golden tones very well. The following pictures show it better.

But anyways! I have a really close group of friends I met at uni, we go out every year and this year we went to Ashton Lane in Glasgow West End. It's a beautiful little pedestrian-only cobbled lane filled with pubs and restaurants.


It's a lovely place to go for a night out. Here's me in THE OUTFIT.

I added a cute little belt from Primark and my amaaaazing shoes from ASOS. Clearly I forgot to clean my camera as well. =p

Close up of my hair - what do you think? I actually really like it now!

Me and my best friends. ^_^


I had a great night, it's so lovely to catch up with friends, and I love the festive season for all the excuses to dress up! Hope you guys are enjoying it so far.

So did I end up picking the right dress? It was actually totally down to you guys cause I wouldn't have kept this one otherwise!! And what do you think of my new hair?? Do I suit it?
Let me know!!

~ Lauren


Saturday, 17 December 2011

BLOG SALE!

After my post where I found loads of make up I used to use and love, and also loads of make up I completely forgot I had and haven't even used, I decided to do my first blog sale! Now I know it's prooobably not the right time of year to be doing this as people are strapped for cash, buying presents etc, but hey ho!!

To buy a product, you must comment below with your name and email address so I can send you an invoice.
Payment is by Paypal only, and only open to UK residents.
Postage is £1 per item, 50p per additional item.
Please pay promptly! ^_^

Also - if you do not have a GFC account, you can email me at Lauren_Blair@hotmail.co.uk <3

Oh and I am sooo sorry about the copious amounts of cat hair in the photos, they were determined to help me out!! =p

Remember you can click on the images to make them larger.

Benefit It Stick (used as shown) £5
Benefit Lip Plump (used as shown - I don't have a sharpener big enough for this, which is why it's blunt - sorry!) £5

Benefit You Rebel Lite (about three quarters left) £9


Benefit She Laq (used as shown) £5
Benefit Shimmer Powder in Powder Puff (used as shown) £5

Benefit Get Even in 02 (swatched once) £13

Rimmel items:
Natural Bronzer (swatched once) £2
Stay Matte Mousse Foundations in 100 Ivory (never used) £2
Colour Mousse Eyeshadows in 012 (sealed) and 005 (unused). £1.50 each

Bourjois items: powder eyeshadow (1/2 full) £1
liquid eyeshadow (used once or twice) £2

I know it's not make up, buuuut Lee Stafford Hair Treatment (unused) £3

Clarins blusher set (top blusher swatched once, others unused) £8

MAC Studio Finish concealer in NC15 (about 2/3 left - quite hard though, is it normally like this? I've forgotten!!) £6
Urban Decay liquid liner in Eldorado (used once or twice) £5


Bare Minerals items (ALL unused):
Three shades of foundation - 1C, 1N and 2N £5 each
Mineral Veil and blusher in Warmth £5 each
Powder brush and kabuki brush £4 each

I think that's everything for now! If you're interested in anything, just let me know in a comment below.
Thanks!


~ Lauren




Sunday, 11 December 2011

Oldies but Goodies!

I'm trying to tidy up my room for Christmas, and it is a battle and a half. I'm not the tidiest of people (understatement of the year) and my room usually resembles a floordrobe/ homeless person's collection of worldly goods. I'm rubbish at throwing things out and I'm rubbish at putting things away, and it's a lethal combo.

So I'm moving all my make up from boxes on the floor to my dressing table (yes, this is the most obvious call in the world) and suddenly I'm glad I'm a hoarder! I rediscovered so many pieces of make up which I had totally forgotten about but used to love. So I'm dedicating a wee post to them.

Look! How exciting! Dior lipstick, Benefit powder eyeshadow, Sephora Primer and moooore! I used to use all of these and then they got ignored when I got newer, more exciting products. But now I'll defo be using them again!

Look at this!! I do not even remember buying any Bare Minerals and I have three mini foundations, a mini blusher, a mini 'mineral veil' and two little brushes! I'm a bit unsure of Bare Minerals to be honest, I guess I don't see how a powder can provide decent coverage, but I know people swear by it!

I found some items I bought, and never even used (apart from maybe once or twice to test). I was thinking of maybe doing a blog sale, would anyone be interested?

Look at all these barely used Benefit goodies!

And Rimmel stuffs!
... aaaand Bourjois eyeshadows!
And this is just a combo of MAC, Clarins, Urban Decay, Biotherm and others. I have been swearing down dead that I'm a MAC virgin, so this kind of surprised me too!

So all in all, actually quite a successful day! =p

The only things I wouldn't be willing to sell probably would be the things in the first picture, the Sexy Mother Pucker in the last picture, the little mini Bourjois eyeshadows (just discovered them and they're so cute!) and maaaaybe the Bare Minerals if I can be bothered finding out more about how this range works.

Have you ever 'reaquinted' yourself with make up you'd forgotten about? Did you ever/ do you still use the products I rediscovered? Would you be interested in a blog sale?
Let me know!

~ Lauren ♥

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