Not really. Nobody can ever own too much make-up. But I have bought quite a few new products in the last few weeks that I felt I should write about in a blog post. Not so much because this is a beauty blog, but more so because I’ve been neglecting my blog and this was the first post idea that came to mind. Also, I got some really nice new stuff.
(These photos are not mine)
First up, my sister bought me a MAC Cremesheen Lipstick in Hang-Up for Christmas (€19 in Brown Thomas). Just look at that vampy purple shade.
This is a gorgeous,wintery, berry lipstick that applies like a dream and doesn’t dry out my lips. My one complaint is that it’s not particularly long-lasting, but I’m putting that down to the slightly more sheer formulation. However, it’s too gorgeous a colour not to wear and I’m happy to put up with the extra touch-ups for the sake of wearing it.
I actually bought the same lipstick for my sister back in October and on a class trip to Berlin last month she completely broke it beyond repair. Devastation was not the word.
I had been working a lot over Christmas and, one evening, feeling tired and very sorry for myself, I logged onto cloud10beauty.com and had a little cosmetics spree. Sleek is rapidly becoming a favourite brand of mine; for the prices of their products, the quality is impressive.
Having heard good things about Sleek eyeshadow palettes, I bought their Ultra Matte i-Divine Darks palette for €9.99.
The shadows aren’t quite as pigmented as the likes of Urban Decay, but their staying power is quite impressive all the same. I’ve only used the white and grey shades so far (Pillow Talk and Thunder) but I’m looking forward to experimenting with some other shades to create a non-shimmery daytime smoky eye. The palette seems to cater to all eye colours; being brown-eyed, I love the cooler shades but there does seem to be something for everyone.
Next up was a Sleek Eyebrow palette in Dark, also €9.99.
Out of all my Sleek purchases, this was probably my favourite. I adore a strong, bold brow and this delivers exactly that. I was worried when the delivery first arrived that the powder would be a touch too pale but with the wax underneath, the effect is still quite a dark brown. The mini-tweezers probably won’t be replacing my regular tweezers but they’re still a nice addition for the price of the set. Overall, I got a defined, dark brow without straying into scary HD brow territory.
I was running out of concealer so Sleek’s Correct and Conceal palette (€10) also snook into my basket. I bought the lightest shade but they seem to have quite a variety for all skin tones.
So far I’ve only used the middle shade and the powder; as of yet I haven’t found any use for the pinker cream but perhaps I will when I return to college and my under-eye shadows make a return! The creams have a nice consistency; not as thick as some higher-end concealers such as Benefit’s Boi-ing but it’s not a bad little set for its price. The powder is a nice touch that blends the concealed area into the rest of your skin as though it were never there.
I also found a lovely little Sleek blush in Coral (€5.49) which I couldn’t find a great photo of online. Nevertheless, it’s great value and delivers a nice wash of colour with a tiny hint of shimmer, despite its rather bold appearance in the pan. I suit coral or peach toned blushes more than pinks, so this is a lovely, cheap replacement for my much loved but currently unattainable Benefit Coralista.
Cloud 10 Beauty is a fantastic site for those in the UK and Ireland; their service and delivery were great and the range of products is especially fantastic for the Irish market as some cosmetic brands are not to be found on our tiny isle. My wishlist for my next order is already compiled, including the famous Seche Vite and some fabulous Essie and OPI nail polishes, which hopefully will come back in stock soon. Cloud 10 also includes up to three free samples with each order. And as if you needed anymore convincing, delivery is free on orders over €15.
Lastly, I will describe for you my latest beauty dilemma. My favourite foundation of the moment, Illamasqua’s Rich Liquid foundation, has been discontinued in my shade, 135. My skin tone can be difficult to match; like most Irish girls I am slightly pale, but unlike most Irish women, I have a distinctly yellow undertone to my skin. 135 was a perfect match but, alas, when my current bottle runs out, this harmonious relationship will end. Long-lasting, oil control and medium to high coverage are my basic requirements for a foundation; no easy feat, as it turns out.
I was using a tester of Lancôme’s Teint Idole Ultra 24h in 005 for a couple of weeks but the shade was a touch too dark. I would have been prepared to overlook this, however, until I realised that it was also making my skin break out. This was actually a shame, because the Teint Idole had that elusive characteristic of having a decent level of coverage without looking cakey on the skin. So back to the drawing board I went.
Last year I had bought myself a bottle of Estée Lauder Double Wear in 1W1 Bone and the shade was perfect on me. It was probably the best foundation I’ve used in terms of durability and oil control; I only wish that it had felt a little lighter on the skin and that it came with a pump; half the bottle was lost to my make-up sponge. But I think that it will probably become my next foundation buy; better the devil you know, and all that jazz.
But until I get paid again, I needed a cheap stop-gap foundation to tide me over. I turned to Catrice’s All Matte Plus foundation in Light Beige, €6.99.
It’s fine. It’s not amazing, but not terrible considering the price. I need two or three layers to cover my blemishes and disguise my open pores around my nose, but this was a problem I even had with MAC foundations so it’s not a big deal. The oil-control isn’t fantastic either. My skin is particularly oily though, so touch-ups and blotting are nothing new for me anyway. The durability is pretty good though; I committed the cardinal sin of sleeping with it on last night and it was still present this morning. The finish is actually lovely, satin-matte as promised on the bottle, without the flat, caked effect of some long-lasting foundations.
So there is my beauty haul for the past few weeks! I’ve been very lucky this Christmas (in general, as well as regarding cosmetics) and I have a feeling that Sleek is going to become a firm favourite brand of mine.
Has anyone else used the products I’ve reviewed? Any recommendations based on what you found under the Christmas tree?