Friday, April 29, 2011

Beauty Purchases from London!

If you read my last post, you'll know i spent the past eight days in England and Paris!  I feel like i have SO much to talk about, i just don't know where to begin really.  I had such an amazing time, England is absolutely beautiful, i don't know what i'll do if i don't get the chance to go back!  I'm in love really.  Paris was a bit... odd?  Gorgeous, but we'll get to that another day...
I figured i could start a bit smaller with a wee makeup & hair product haul.  I don't buy makeup too often, but i knew i'd go crazy once i got to London.  I had a mental list of products i wanted to try out & luckily, i found most of them!  I should say i was in a bit of a rush whilst there, so i didn't get to dabble around and really look at all the brands and products recommended to me unfortunately.  :/  I thought i'd stick to brands & products i can't get here in the States, since MAC, Lush, etc. brands i can get here are more expensive overseas anyways.
You may notice i didn't buy a single thing from Paris in this haul, i was running out of money by the time i got there and had to feed myself, haha.
Let us begin!

I popped into Boots on one of the last nights i was in London & got these products, as well as a few makeup bits & bobs.  From left to right: Charles Worthington Rough & Tousled Salt Spray - £6.29, Umberto Giannini Backcomb in a Bottle - £5.61, Tangle Teezer £10.20, James Brown London Photo Fabulous Volumising Shampoo & Conditioner - both £6.99.
It's fantastic that Boots has the 3 for 2 little deal on certain sections, i actually ended up getting the Salt Spray for free, as well as a Barry M Nail Paint.
The only products i've tried so far are the Tangle Teezer, which i'm not sure what my thoughts are on yet, and the James Brown shampoo & conditioner, which smell divine & i actually really like!  If you would like me to do a review on any of these, let me know. :)

The first day i was there, i actually had a bit of 'free time' to go shopping - to say i was pleased would be an understatement. ;D  The hotel i stayed at was just a little walk from King's Mall in Hammersmith (can you say shopping addict heaven?!), where there was a Primark, River Island, etc. as well as a Superdrug.  I made a quick stop in there and had a bit of a spree...
From left to right: Sleek iDivine Storm Palette - £6.49, Gosh Velvet Touch Eyeliner in Black Ink (free with purchase of eyeshadow palette), Sleek Face Contour Kit in Light - £6.50, Vaseline Lip Therapy "Rosy Lips" tin £1.73, and Gosh eyeshadow quad in "22 Driftwood" - £7.99.
I was so lucky to get the last Storm palette in stock, i've heard an incredible amount of raves about this, as well as the Contour Kit - so excited to try these two out!  Although they're so pretty, i don't know if i can get myself to mess with them... The Vaseline Rosy Lips was a bit of an impulse buy.  I didn't have it on my mental list, but i saw it & grabbed it!  It smells so lovely.  I haven't heard too much about the Gosh palettes, but i knew i had to get at least one Gosh thing - and it was awesome that the eyeliner came free!
 A little closer peek at the Sleek & Gosh palettes and the Contour Kit.
I totally spaced out as far as blushes and lipsticks go from these brands, i was in such a state of disbelief, all these products and brands i've heard mentioned so many times but didn't have access to, come to life!  It was quite the moment for me, haha.  I'm quite pathetic!

Now, i went a bit crazy when i got to the Barry M sections of Boots & Superdrug (as you may or may not be able to tell by the 'nails' section of this post!).  Again, i didn't get to look around too much while i was shopping, so i just grabbed what i thought i might like.
From left to right: Lip Gloss Wand shade 12 Strawberry Milkshake - £4.49 at Superdrug, Lip Paint in 100 Baby Pink - £4.49 at Boots, Dazzle Dust in 39 Tan - £4.59 from Superdrug, and Dazzle Dust in 53 Chocolate - £4.59 from Boots.
I just about fainted when i saw the Barry M stands, i wanted everything!  The packaging and the shades were all so lovely, and the brand just screams "England" to me, is this weird?  Haha.  I haven't tried these products out since i tried them, but i am SO excited to!  *sigh* Barry M, Y U NO IN UNITED STATES?!

I had a bit too much fun checking out all the Barry M Nail Paints at Superdrug, you have no idea!  I easily could have just cleared out the entire section, but i had to restrain myself.  I had to throw out quite a bit of stuff in my suitcase to fit all my purchases in.  (And the pathetic-ness continues!)
From left to right - all £2.99: 309 Strawberry Ice Cream, 264 Pink Iridescent Glitter, 318 Peach Melba, 304 Mint Green, 290 Spring Green (free with other purchases at Boots), 308 Berry Ice Cream, 312 Indigo, 293 Grey, 311 Nail Effects in Black.
These are just too cute, i can't even stand it!  They're all lined up/hidden in my desk/vanity drawer, so my sister doesn't steal them... I tried the Nail Effect nail paint over a lilac nail polish i already had on, and i'm in love!  It looks so awesome, i've gotten so many 'in awe' comments on them already.


I feel like all my upcoming posts are going to be about England & France - i have yet to show you all what i picked up clothes-wise, as well as photos from my actual trip!  I think i'll do my trip photos first, since i'm going to try and film my clothes haul, as trying to take photos of all the clothes may actually be disastrous!  I took an insane amount of photos whilst traveling, over 1000, and they took me about 20 minutes to load them to the computer!  Really excited to share everything with you lovelies though, i really did have the time of my life *tear*. ♥♥
Thanks for reading & stay tuned everyone!

P.S. Congratulations William & Catherine!  You two are beautiful together.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Update & Upcoming Travels

I feel like i have SO much to catch up with you ladies on!  (Please excuse the wordy sentence).  I won't have too much time to get any blog posts up for a while - not like i blog much anyway! *sadface* - but i digress... So much has been going on lately in my life: i've been working a ton, i've been ill & therefore have a lot to catch up on school-wise, preparing for prom, and i've also been getting ready for my trip to England & France!  Yep, if you didn't already know, i will be flying to London this Wednesday (the 20th) and will be there for a few days, then i'll be taking the train to Paris.  It's so surreal, it honestly hasn't even hit me that i'll be going to the country where an insane amount of my favorite bloggers, bands, etc. live, although we've been planning this for months!

I'm going with a fairly small group of people from school (it's an English department trip for juniors and seniors).  I'm really hoping to avoid looking like a tourist, although with a group of people that really don't know anything about England and traveling with a tour guide, unfortunately, i'm afraid that we will look like utter tourists. D:  Oh, the horror!

Although i may look like a total nerd/typical tourist, snapping photos of everything and hopefully getting LOADS in Primark, if any of you happen to spot me, don't be afraid to approach me!  I know this most likely won't happen, but i would love for it too. ;)  And if i see any of you, i will definitely at least try to gather the courage to come up to you. ♥

If you have any recommendations of products or places i should check out, definitely let me know!  We're staying in Hammersmith and i'm already planning on trying to make time to go to Superdrug, Primark, New Look, maybe River Island, and hopefully Topshop.  My bank account is going to totally hate me after this trip.  Ahem.

A bit off the subject, but i wanted to give a little shoutout to Hannah who recently celebrated her one year blogiversary and decided to share the love a bit by mentioning a few of her fellow bloggers she met through Blogger - one of them being me!  It honestly made my day, it was so sweet.  Beautylishious is one of my favorite blogs and the lady behind it is so lovely. :)  Happy blogiversary and here's to many more to come!

I hope you're all doing well, i miss blogging & talking to you guys. :l
Talk to you lovelies soon!  Thanks for sticking by me and Big City Dreams, i mean it. ♥

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

New hair!

My hair looks strangely super-brunette in these photos... it's not actually that dark.
Oh, and did i ever mention how much i love this dove cardigan i got?!

I'd been uhm-ing and ah-ing over getting bangs cut in since i was getting sick of having to pin my hair back everyday.  I had to get my hair trimmed anyway so i decided to just go for it!  So i went and cut them cut in & got a trim as well and after a bit of tears at the shorter length (yes, i was drowning in self-pity..over hair!) i finally got used to it.  It's really not that short anyway, my hair was just extremely long before!
I find styling my hair with these bangs to be a bit difficult as the lady who did my hair put a lot into the bangs part.  It doesn't really show in these photos, but in real life they're soo fussy!  Kind of miss my hippie-esque hair, but this will do for now.  I've gotten a lot of compliments on it as well!  I still not sure if they suit me though. :P
Also, i'm definitely considering re-ombre-ing my hair.  I temporary dyed over it in a dark brown color, but i miss my ombre hair to be honest!  Would look lovely in summertime too methinks. :)

Monday, April 4, 2011

Skincare miracle?

The title may be a bit dramatic, but read on. ;)
I'm always a bit hesitant to review skincare products since everyone's skin is different.  My own skin is always strange, it's either too oily or has dry patches and i've also struggled with really bad acne for a while now (thank god it's been under control for the past couple months *knocks on wood*).  I'm also really sensitive to fragrances, mineral oil, and parabens, so finding makeup & skincare products that suit my skin & that i actually like can be extremely frustrating.  But when i tried this product out, i knew i just had to have a bit of a rave on it.

The product in question is Yes to Tomatoes Skin Clearing Facial Mask from their "Clear Skin" range.  I'd been in the market for a face mask and heard good things about the Yes to Carrots/Cucumbers/Tomatoes (it varies haha), so i thought i would go with this one.  The first thing i did was look at the ingredients and saw that it was paraben-free and also had some really lovely-sounding ingredients in it (full list here).  I saw that it had fragrance in it so i was a bit skeptical about that, but it ended up not irritating my skin at all, big thumbs up.
I took it home and tried it out several times before i reviewed it for you lovelies so i could really see how it worked for me.  You only leave the mask on for five minutes - now, i was a bit confuzzled about that..i thought, how much could a mask do in five minutes?  But anywho...  So you put the product on your face and the texture is a bit, stiff?  Not sure how to describe it, but there's little particles in it (probably the Dead Sea salt).  It's not hard to put on though, just a bit less creamy than other face masks i've tried.

After you've left it on for five minutes, you wipe it off with a wash cloth and then close up your pores with a bit of cooler water.  I've found this face mask a bit hard to get off completely, but it's not too much of a problem.  My skin is left feeling deep cleaned and smooth, and then i just continue on with the rest of my skincare routine (toner & moisturizer).  I use this whenever my skin is breaking out with spots and nothing is seeming to help clear it up.  I do use this at night after i've cleansed my face and in the morning the spots have dramatically decreased in size and my skin is noticeably clearer.

I'm so glad i decided to give this product a try.  Since it's a product i use just once a week (at maximum.  I'd say i use this product like twice a month though) you don't go through it too quickly, so for $15, i'd say it's a pretty good value.  Again, i'm not sure how this product would work on drier skin types, as i have quite oily & acne-prone skin, but for those of you with skin similar to mine, i'd definitely recommend trying this out!

What are some of your favorite skincare products?