Thursday, December 26, 2013

MUA Undress your skin Foundation | Review

Hello Lovelies,

I hope you all had an amazing Christmas and Santa brought you all you wished for. He was very kind this year and brought loads of goodies including the Naked 3 palette from Urban Decay. He had to traipse the streets of London including about a dozen Debenhams stores, eventually picking it up in Westfields, London - I must have been a very good girl this year ;) 

Today I come to you with a review of a foundation that I have fallen for. Head over heels. In LOVE. It is from MUA or Makeup Academy, a brand that I have known about for a while but never bothered to try out myself until recently. I took the plunge and made a sneaky order both for myself and I also picked up a few stocking stuffers for my two younger sisters. MUA is cheap, ridiculously cheap. I filled my basket with bits (17 things to be precise) and including delivery priced at €5.92 it totaled €50.49. Not bad eh? 

Anyway the foundation itself is from their 'Undress Your Skin' range. Double points for anyone who can tell me what they are duping here!? 
Thats right.. Its the Urban Decay 'Naked' Collection. 

What it claims:  

"Covers imperfections and blemishes whilst maintaining your skins natural glow with light-diffusing particles of shimmer that creates instant radiance."

What you get: 

A lightweight, medium coverage foundation that leaves you with a really subtle, healthy glow. When I heard 'shimmer' I was a bit put off as I know from experience a lot of the "drugstore"/ chemist brands tend to take 'shimmer' to the extreme and you can end up looking like a disco ball. Not the case with this foundation at all. It really is light-diffusing.

 I have tried the UD Naked Skin BB myself and found that like a lot of other BB creams it clung onto the dry patches on my face. This is not the case here, it glides over the dry skin and does not flake away throughout the day either. As for oily skin? Shimmer? I know its not normally recommended and that a matte finish tends to suit oily skin better. Well if you follow me on twitter you will know that of late, I don't know how or why but my normally uber dry skin is quite oily in places. My T-zone, my forehead in particular. I just pat on some of my Maybelline 'Fit Me' pressed powder and it does not budge. 

It is normally priced at €5.98 but is actually on offer at the moment for €3.59 and is available here . How do I know this? I may or may not be in the process of placing another order. You do need to take shipping at almost €6 into consideration when ordering, however realistically it still works out cheaper than a lot of your chemist brands like Maybelline and L'oreal and a damn sight cheaper than the "REAL DEAL".

The packaging isn't anything to write home about, it comes in a basic squeezy tube, its stripped back to save on costs with isn't a bad thing as those savings are then passed onto you. And you don't have to pay €5 for a pump for a bottle of foundation you just paid €30 either - added bonus!

My one and only qualm, if you'd even call it that is the lack of shades, it comes in 3. Porcelain, Beige and Golden. I picked up the shade 'Beige' and it is perfect for me when I'm without fake tan. I was in complete shock as I can only imagine how light porcelain is if I'm Beige. So its not even a complaint on my part, its about time the fair skinned ladies were seen after if you ask me! 

Also I'd like to mention the speedy shipping. I received my order in 4 working days, which I might add is a hell of a lot quicker than other companies I have ordered from in the past especially considering they are coming from the UK.

Anyway ladies, dinner is calling. The one and only time you won't hear me complaining about leftovers. I hope you all have a great St. Stephens night and if you're headed out don't forget your jacket and your brolli and your rain poncho and your wellies its meant to be a bad one! 

Have you tried any MUA products before? 

Monday, December 16, 2013

Boohoo for real | Rant

I have been toying with writing this post for almost two weeks and I wasn't going to, I don't set out to slate companies but I was and am so disappointed with the level of customer service I received I decided to share my feelings.

About 3 weeks ago I set out looking for an outfit to wear to my Christmas party. I trolled shops and the internet in search and found a very promising one on Boohoo. A classic black dress, three quarter sleeves and a little bit of a slit. Saying that it was promising is a bit of an understatement really. I was so in love with it. It would have been perfect and so easy to dress up. Hallelujah it was there in my size too - or so I thought!

I popped a pair of hounds tooth heels into my basket and placed my order. It was a Sunday night and Boohoo advise that you will have you're delivery within 2-3 working days. So I thought Thursday or Friday at the very latest. I have ordered from the site before and have never had a problem.

Thursday came and went and I had been checking my online account daily only to be told it had been "dispatched". Friday night I was getting tired of waiting so I tweeted my disappointment and got an almost immediate response from what I thought at the time was a very helpful 'here to help' staff member delighted after DM-ing her for a while she told me it should be with me early the following week. That was good enough for me, my mind was at ease.

Sunday evening I received an email telling me that part of my order - My beloved dress had been cancelled. No explanation, no apology - NOTHING! If my order, or part of my order was out of stock, while speaking with a Boohoo representative why was I not told? If the dress was out of stock at the time why was I able to order it?

I was absolutely disgusted to think a week after placing my order all I got was a system generated email. Surely during any of the 5 working days after ordering it someone could have been in contact with me. It really has put me off ordering from them again and I know I'm not alone in feeling the same way. If you offer good customer service I will praise you to no end. Whether the news you give me is what I want to hear or not. It takes all of about 1 minute to write an email or to look into an order placed in good faith.

Boohoo is quite a fitting name for the company after my most recent experience with them. I say this because I work in customer service myself and I know that honesty will get you a lot further with your customers than empty promises will. They let me down, but more importantly they have let themselves down.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Babyliss Big Hair | Review

I have said it before and I'll say it again, Boots is the epitome of a First World Problem!  I have yet to leave it empty handed and with one only 20 minutes away from me now there's fat chance of it happening anytime soon.

So last Sunday I popped into the newly opened Boots in Bandon to pick up a few bits on the 3 for 2 offer. When this caught my attention.

The Babyliss 'Big Hair' in a nutshell is a heated, rotating barrel brush. I had only recently seen it in Life, Laughs and Laura's monthly favourites and it was love at first sight. I am a massive blow dry fan. There's nothing like a little oomph to make you feel good about yourself. However, it is something I have never really mastered on my own (it takes two professionals to do it for me normally).

It comes with 3 heat settings and can be rotated either clockwise or anti clockwise depending on look you want to achieve.

Now I know I wasn't alone in thinking that it would get tangled in my hair and I'd end up having to cut it out. It doesn't. That's the beauty of it, as soon as you release the catch it stops rotating and you hair falls free of the bristles smooth, shiny and full of body.

I am both blessed and cursed with my hair - I have lots of it for starters and when straightened it stops about 3/4 of the way down my back. When done well it looks great but I tend to get bored when attempting to blow dry it myself and it ends up in a ball on the top of my head.

With this I dry my hair with my ordinary hairdryer until it's about 80% dry. I then section it out and begin to style it. It takes no time at all and adds loads of volume. When I'm done my hair looks and feels like its been done professionally if I do say so myself. As for fool proof? Even my dad has had a go of it and he did a pretty good job too!

To finish I take one pump of my beloved L'oreal Extraordinary Oil and run it through my ends. As fabulous as this styler is, it isn't a miracle worker and can not cure split ends. The oil does disguise them nicely though.

It is priced at €59.99 and is available in Boots. It is on promotion at the moment so I picked it up along with 3 other beauty bits and paid a grand total of €53.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Cocoa Brown's Pink Party

You're probably blue in the face from listening to me harp on about the Cocoa Brown Christmas Party at this stage between Facebook and twitter over the past few days but guess what!? I'm about to harp on another bit! 

I headed off to Dublin on Monday morning bright eyed and bushy tailed ready to do some damage with my plastic before Christmas and was going to the very exclusive Residence Members Club that evening to celebrate the Massive success for the Cocoa Brown Franchise over the past twelve months.

I stayed in The Morgan Hotel in Fleet Street by Temple Bar. It is the most amazing Boutique hotel and it is right in the centre of everything - 4 stars isn't enough to do it justice. The staff were absolutely amazing, so helpful and friendly. I could really get used being greeted as "Ms. McCarthy" every time I passed one of them. The service was over and above anything I could have expected and I will most certainly be returning in the near future! 

Here are just a few snaps of my room..

After dropping my stuff off in the room I headed out to a bit of shopping, grabbed some lunch and of course I had to stop off in Starbucks for a compulsory cup of coffee. It's such a novelty as there is no "real" Starbucks in Cork just yet. 

After that it was a mad tear back to the hotel to get ready and off out the door again. Last night's Soiree was held in the very exclusive Residence Members Club in Stephens Green.

 We were greeted by name, handed glasses of Pink Punch and had our photos taken by a professional photographer. I felt like a real VIP.
 Everywhere you looked and everything you touched was pink and glittery. Bottles of Tan adorned every table and counter in sight.  I was and still am starstruck after the night. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine I'd be in the same room as the likes of Rosanna Davison or Amanda Brunker. 

The attention to detail and treats were really and truly out of this world. The Carter Beauty Team were on hand giving beautiful Cocoa Brown Manicure's and there was goodie bags for everyone who attended.

Half way through the night Marissa made a beautiful heartfelt speech thanking everyone for their continued support of the brand. So grateful and so modest she truly deserves every success in the business. She is such a role model for up and coming entrepreneurs.

 A few snaps from the night..

Myself and Marissa
(Excuse the blurriness I haven't figured out the camera on my new phone just yet)

Cake pops - if Heaven had a taste, this is undoubtedly it!

 A Giant cake version of the Original 1hr Tan

Pink Punch

Cocoa Brown Stick on Nails by @iNailz an up and coming Company. You can literally get anything you want printed on them. Thanks a Million to Wendy for giving me a pack of the nails to take away.

The Carter Beauty Team giving Pink Manicures

Just some of the sweeties we were treated to :)

The new Travel size version of the Original 1hr tan - How cute is that bottle?

And last but by no means least look what I had to travel all the way to Dublin for!! I finally got my hands on the Chocolate Whip Moisturiser. It's like gold dust arround here!!

 I had such an amazing night and it was so nice to catch up with some of the beauty bloggers I met at the last event and of course to meeting a few new ones. I'm looking forward to the next event already :) 

I'm off to bed now, The cobblestones of Temple Bar have gotten the better of me and my poor feet and its back to reality tomorrow unfortunately back to work and tomorrow is my Monday - Ugh!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

November Favourites

Is it just me or has November just flown? It seems are though I've blinked and it gone. I can't really say I'm complaining though as my November/ Pre-Christmas spending ban finished on Sunday meaning I'm free to go absolutely nuts with my card again - YAY! 

I have been itching to burn some serious plastic over the past few weeks but I've held off. As a result I managed to save a few penny's to splash out over the festive season AND it has forced me to work with some long forgotten treasures. Tonight's post, if you haven't already guessed is a look into some of the bits I've been LOVING throughout the month of November.

NYC Applelicious Glossy Lip Balm in 354 'Apple blossom' - €2.49

I picked this up months ago and I'd say I took it out of the packet, tried it on and forgot about it. Well on doing my clear out a few weeks ago I came across it again and I literally have not looked back since. I've received loads of complements while wearing it, it just adds a sheer pop of colour so it's nice for everyday. It smells (and tastes) Ah-mazing! I think I've probably eaten about as much of it as I have actually worn. I know you're thinking "But it's a lip balm and she said not to wear them!?" Yes, she did say that. However, if you are a lipstick wearer normally you'll know lipstick in general can be quite drying so why not wear this one a glossy alternative? 

Neal's Yard Bee Lovely Hand Cream - €12 approx.

A lot of people won't like this hand cream as it is a little oily. I don't mind it at all. I work in an office and spend quite a lot of the time on calls so I have plenty time for it to soak it and work it's magic. During the winter months my skin gets quite dry - my hands especially so I like to keep a tube of cream with me at all times. The one I normally use is The Body Shops hemp hand cream but I ran out and due to my spending ban I rediscovered this little beauty. Imagine you're just after peeling an orange - thats exactly what it smells like, minus the sticky fingers. I know some people find it quite strong but I personally find the smell uplifting especially with the cold weather. It's like a mini pick me up. 

L'oreal Extraordinary Oil - €15 approx

Hair Oil's are something I have always had a bit of a love/hate relationship with. I either put on too much and it looks like I haven't washed my hair at all or I don't use enough and it does nothing. This stuff I picked up after trying a freebie sachet from a magazine simply because it smelled so good. I fell deeply in love with it almost instantly. I have quite long hair - its about halfway down my back and I use 2 pumps of this and my hair is completely transformed. Its quite dry naturally so this adds a nice bit of shine to it, it is also in dire need of a cut but I don't have a lot of free time at the moment,this does the trick as a quick fix for my brutal split ends too. Perfect!

CND Solar Oil - €10 approx.

I've said it before and I will say it again. Solar Oil is the only cuticle oil worth talking about. It contains Jojoba Oil and Vitamin E which penetrate into your nails to nourish and re-hydrate. This stuff has literally been a life saver over the past month. My nails lacked attention last month and as a result they were brittle and breaking. This gave them the lift they needed and they are back fighting fit again. Ask your nail tech, she SHOULD stock it!

Sleek Blush in 'Flushed' €5.49
Since A/W '13 hit I have become increasingly obsessed - Yes OBSESSED with this shade. Its a real deep berry colour and admittedly looks quite scary as it is really pigmented. A light sweep of this paired with a deep berry or Bordeaux lip and you're good to go. It is the only blush I have used all month. Definitely one of my staples for the festive season! 

If you're interested in seeing my thoughts on some of the other Sleek blushes. I have reviewed them here.

This brings me on nicely to my final favourite of the month..

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in 'Black Cherry' - €10.70

If you have "liked" Give A Posy on Facebook you'll know I've been harping on about how amazing this lipstick is. It's a dupe for MAC's 'Rebel'. While I bit the bullet and picked it up in Boots in October. To say it surpassed my expectations is an understatement. It's quite daring but not at all hard to pull off - as long as you keep your eyes pretty neutral that it. The packaging is a little cheapy in comparison to other "drug store" brands but don't let that put you off. It's a real gem!

So there you have it, just a little insight into the beauty bits I have been loving throughout the month of November. What did you think? Should I make it a regular thing?

 If there is anything you want reviewed in more detail please don't hesitate to ask. 

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