Monday, 18 May 2015

NOTD: Rimmel Rita Ora 60 Seconds Super Shine - Roll in the Grass

Last year Rimmel launched a collab range of nail polishes with Rita Ora. There was a lovely selection of colours but they were part of the 60 Seconds range which was notorious for taking several 60 seconds to dry.
This year's polishes are different in that they actually dry in a reasonable amount of time. I still wouldn't say 60 seconds but a single layer takes around the two minute mark to set which is a big improvement. 

The colour Roll in the Grass is a greeny turquoise shade. The high shine finish makes it look like you've gone out and got your nails done when it actually only took five minutes at home. I've had multiple strangers compliment my nails each time I've worn this which is always a great feeling. 

The brush is quite wide which can make application a little messy on my smaller nails. Having said that, I know a lot of people much prefer a wide brush so it's really just down to personal taste. 
The formula is thick but not gloopy. For full opacity, I apply three layers, being careful not to load up the brush with too much polish.

I used the Nail HQ All in One polish to help prevent any staining on my nails and to help strengthen them.

I also popped some Superdrug Vitamin E Super Balm on my cuticles as they're a little dry at the moment. This a great multi-purpose balm that can be used on areas of dry skin.

Overall, I'm loving this nail polish and I need to go get more from the collection. They're around €4.49 but are on sale in Sam McCauley's for just over €3. 

Let me know if you've tried any polishes from the new Rita Ora range. Did you find the drying time better than previous years? 

Thanks for reading :) 

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Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara

I picked up Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara when my Benefit Gimme Brow ran out. Don't get me wrong, Gimme Brow is probably my favourite brow product BUT it's so pricey. Spending €19 for something that doesn't even last three months is just ridiculous to me.
I love Maybelline mascaras so I figured their brow mascara might be okay and for under €8, I didn't feel like I was breaking the bank.

Overall, I've been loving Maybelline Brow Drama. My only issue is with the weird concept for an applicator.

In theory, it's a pretty good idea but in reality, it's just too big. It forms into a ball at the end of the wand which is too wide for the tail of my brows meaning I end up brushing my skin. In fairness, the product only attaches to the hairs and not my skin but I feel like I can't be as accurate with it as I'd like to be.

Here's my baby finger nail for scale. 

The formula itself is quite wet and applies lightly, you can build up a couple of layers for a natural look or use it to set another brow product. It looks very natural once it dries but it is quite crunchy to touch. You wouldn't look at your eyebrows and think "crispy..." but you can definitely feel it.

I have the shade Dark Brown and it's perfect for me. I have dark brown hair and black brows so I hate products that have a red undertone. Thankfully, this is quite cool toned.

When this runs out I want to try the L'Oreal Brow Artist Plumper because it has a smaller brush but I wouldn't hesitate to repurchase this if I wasn't intrigued by L'Oreal's offering.

Have you tried either Maybelline or L'Oreal's brow mascaras? Are you a fan of Benefit's Gimme Brow? Let me know what you think!

Thanks for reading :) 

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Thursday, 23 April 2015

Essence Nail Art Express Dry Drops

I really don't have the patience to wait for my nails to fully set so I always end up with a dent or a smudge in at least one.
On my quest to cut corners and skip steps, I came across the Essence Nail Art Express Dry Drops.

The solution looks just like water but with a couple of drops per nail, you can cut the drying time of your polish in half. 

The application is so easy as the bottle comes with a little dropper which picks up the perfect amount of product to cover both hands without having to go back for more. 

It's a very thin consistency which means it tends to run all over your hands. You just have to wipe or wash your hands once your nails dry and you're good to go though.

Once it's on, you only have to wait around 30 seconds to feel the polish starting to set.
I find some polishes that usually take a ridiculous amount of time to dry can take up to five minutes to dry with these but that's a lot better than ten minutes. 

I don't think it's meant to be a feature but I always find my nails have a high shine finish after I use this compared to when I don't. I also find it quite moisturising on my cuticles.
Overall, I'm really impressed by this product. For under €3 you get an 8ml bottle which will last you quite a while.

I know Bourjois do Instant Dry Nail Drops too but they're €8 and I didn't feel like spending that on a product that could be a total gimmick. Let me know if you've ever tried the Bourjois drops as I'd be interested to see if they work as well as the Essence ones.

I hope you all enjoyed this post, let me know if there's anything I missed out as I'm a little rusty at writing at the moment.

Thanks for reading :) 

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Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Where Have I Been? Depression, OCD, Panic Disorder, Agoraphobia and Anxiety.

I originally wrote a draft of this post the other day but decided not to publish it. Reading over it, I'm glad I didn't. I wasn't in the best state of mind and I really divulged a lot more information than I would have felt comfortable sharing.

Anyway, first off I just want to say sorry for vanishing on you guys. The blog was going so well and I was being offered all these amazing opportunities and everything was great. Unfortunately, everything wasn't great with me. I don't want to go into the details of everything but I feel like I owe you all a little explanation of where on earth I've been.

Trigger Warning: mentions of mental illness, self harm and suicidal tendencies. 

About 6 months ago I had been silently battling OCD for over a year. To say that I was going out of my mind doesn't even begin to explain how I was feeling. When people think of OCD, most people think of excessive hand washing and a fear of germs and dirt and yes that's one aspect of the illness but there's a whole lot more going on than most people know about. For starters, there's the rituals. These are basically actions that you have to repeat constantly in order to keep you and your loved ones (sometimes random people or the whole world) safe.
To give you an example, I had a ritual of laying the hand towel in the bathroom on the side of the bath by lining it up and straightening it, having the tag at the top right and making sure I let go of it with both hands at the same time or I'd have to start again. The whole time, I would be holding my breath, counting to 4 and letting out hard exhales when I thought I was finished but of course, I was never finished and I could spend 20 minutes "fixing" the towel until I nearly fainted. I would only leave after coming to an understanding with myself that anything bad that happened to ANYONE that day, was my fault and I'd just have to live with it.
Now, this probably sounds time consuming, quite stupid and very stressful. I want you to understand that I had around 50 of these rituals to do on a daily basis and some of them were repeated hundreds of times a day.
Not only did I have to deal with these, my life used to revolve around the number 4. I would count to 4, four times then repeat this in multiples of 4. Then there's the intrusive thoughts and graphic images that are thrown at you when you least expect it. I can't leave out the urges either, sometimes I'd be in town and would see myself lunging for someone's phone. Not to steal it, just to do it. Then there's the pain from clenching your jaw every day so you don't shout out something offensive that you normally would never even consider saying.
I'm still dealing with quite a few of these OCD behaviours and thoughts BUT I can function. I can make it through the day without ending up curled up, blocking my ears wishing I was dead but being too afraid to kill myself because then my family would be sad and that would be my fault.

Now while I was going through all this, I used blogging as an escape. However, once my OCD subsided a little, it made just enough space for my Panic Disorder, Depression, General Anxiety Disorder and Agoraphobia to slip back in.

I've always dealt with anxiety since as long as I can remember, the same goes for depression. I've been on various medications since I was 14 just to keep me alive.

Panic attacks are relatively new to me, starting back in 2011.
I would get around 3 a day and couldn't leave the house without getting one. In fact, I didn't go past the front door for 7 months in 2013.
When I started to get better, I went through a period of quite a few months without a single attack which was amazing. Then BOOM. I started getting them weekly, daily, hourly and I was trapped in my own body again. I'm sure a lot of you know what a panic attack is so I won't go into it but they can come on at any moment for no apparent reason and you're left shaking, hyperventilating, crying, sweating, feeling like you're about to die and throw up and faint all at the same time.
It's something I wouldn't wish on anybody.
Not only did I start getting these massive attacks, the anxiety that I experience on a daily basis sky-rocketed. This made me fall back into avoiding social situations. Those 7 months of being house bound were the worst of my life so once I identified that it was happening again, I forced myself to get out and do things before it got bad.
When I do go out, my hands shake so hard that I look like I have a neurological disorder. I constantly feel sick and dizzy all because of the constant worry and my inability to go five minutes without holding my breath. I'm used to it all at this stage but sometimes I wish I could experience a day of feeling "normal".

As with a lot of Anxiety sufferers, Depression comes hand in hand with the disorder.
I've been battling with severe clinical depression since I was 14 and I've never had a time I can look back on and say I felt "good" or "better". My mood always varies from okay to very, very bad. I can't count the amount of times I've tried to take my own life over the years and I can't count the amount of scars my body is covered in from self inflicted cuts and burns. Unfortunately, that's the only way I learned to deal with my feelings.

Now that that's all out, I think you guys can understand that I just wasn't able to blog. Writing a post is so trivial compared to making suicide plans.
When I actually tried to write, I'd just stare at the laptop until I got angry and slammed it shut.

Today, I'm feeling much better than I have in weeks. I don't know how long that will last but I want to make the most of it and get this out and also let you guys know that I'm back. Hopefully. I'm going to try my best to get a couple of posts up a week but I'm not going to put myself under any pressure because I know the second I do, I'll break again.

I didn't write this post for sympathy or for anyone to start wrapping me in cotton wool, I just wanted to contribute to breaking the stigma of mental health issues by speaking openly about them.
I hope that one day I won't have to take breaks from my life just to be able to funtion day to day.
Until then, I guess I should just accept that this is something I'm going to be battling for quite a while and maybe I won't be able to do the same things as everyone else my age but I also have to understand that just because mental illness is invisible, that doesn't make it any less of a disability.

If you've read this far, I just want to say thank you. I hope to see you all in a couple of days with one of my usual posts.

If you need some information and helpful tips on coping with depression visit T
There are several websites to help with anxiety and a variety of other issues, just type your problem into Google, it won't hurt.
If you need help now, contact the Samaritans
You can also visit Pieta's website for help with self harm and suicidal thoughts.
If you are going through any of these things, please reach out because people do care.

Thanks for reading :) 

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Wednesday, 4 February 2015

NOTD: Jess - Swan Lake

Dealz opened in my town a few months ago and it's been the best thing to happen to us in a very long time! Besides the cheap stationary, junk food and household products, they sell makeup.
I hit up the Rimmel section straight away but I overlooked the little pots of Jess nail polishes along the queue to the checkout.
Thankfully, my mom picked one up for me and I'm so glad she did.

The first thing that strikes me about this polish is how similar it is to my beloved Barry M Blueberry.

This polish takes two coats to get full opacity. It dries quickly and stays on until you decide to take it off. Seriously, I've gone a full week with this on my nails and not a single chip. It applies streak free and has a nice shiny finish.

The brush is small and thin, similar to Barry M actually. I really like it as it isn't too big for my nails like some brushes.

Lets address the elephant in the room, I cut my nails and they are TINY. They're just too weak to keep at the length I like so I decided to cut them down, take care of them and try to grow them back out with the hopes that they'll be stronger.

To help with that, I used Nail HQ All in One with Argan Oil* as a basecoat.

I'm hoping this will work it's magic and make my nails stronger and less likely to snap when hit with a strong gust of wind. It applies clear despite it looking green in the bottle. I'll continue to use this and get back with my thoughts on it.

Let me know if you've tried any of the Jess nail polishes or if there's any other bargain beauty bits I'm overlooking! 

Thanks for reading! :) 

*This product was sent to me for review but all opinions are and always will be, my own

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Monday, 2 February 2015

Empties and Would I Repurchase?

Over the past few months, I've been collecting all my used up products to put together for a post. I don't have that many to talk about because I do take a while to get through products but I think it's time I got rid of these!

L'Oreal True Match Foundation in W3

When I first got this, I absolutely loved it. Unfortunately, the more I used it, the less I liked it. I feel like it all congealed on my cheeks and wore off my chin so easily. I felt very caked by this when I used it over the past couple of weeks so I don't think I'll be picking it up again.

Soap & Glory One Heck of a Blot

I've talked about this a lot in previous posts but I seriously love it. It's mattifying  but doesn't cake up or add any colour. No other powders I've used can compare to it. I've already repurchased this and plan on getting another when that runs out!

Barry M - Clear Basecoat, Topcoat and Nail Hardener

This is a staple in my nail collection. It's a brilliant base and topcoat and really helps to prolong the wear of your nail polish. I will be repurchasing this as I do so every couple of months.

Maybelline The Falsies Volum' Express Waterproof Mascara

This is my all time favourite mascara which you'll know if you're a regular around here. I have already repurchased this and probably will be again soon unless pigs fly.

Urban Decay All Nighter Spray

This setting spray is a lifesaver. I have a full post here if you'd like to read it but I will certainly be repurchasing this.

Benefit Gimme Brow

I absolutely love this tiny mascara for doing my eyebrows but I don't think I'll be repurchasing it too quickly as it's €19. I just purchased Maybelline's Brow Drama and so far, I'm really liking it. It might take the place of this. I'll report back on that soon though.

That's all my empties, let me know if you've tried any of the products I just mentioned and what you thought of them. Are there any things in this post you would never repurchase?

Thanks for reading! :) 

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Wednesday, 21 January 2015

NOTD - Barry M Gelly - Cardamom

You all knew I couldn't go two weeks in a row without using a Barry M polish.
Today's post is a Gelly which I haven't used in a while so I guess it's a little different than usual... ahem.

Cardamom is a lovely forest green that's slightly muted. It's part of the 2014 Autumn collection which contains a lovely grey, brown, rust, mustard and red. Unfortunately, my skin is so yellow/green, the shades I like the look of clash horribly on me. Thankfully, this looks lovely on.
Can I just point out, green is my least favourite colour in the world so the fact that I actually like this really says something for the shade.

Barry M Gellies usually last at least four days without a topcoat.

I didn't put a topcoat on for these pictures so you could see how much of a high shine it has.

It needs two thin coats for full opacity but one heavy layer will do if you're in a rush. I just find it doesn't dry very well if you just glob it on. 

I love this polish because it steps away from the burgundies and purples we've been wearing all winter but it's not quite the mint green we'll reach for in Spring. It's a lovely transition colour while still being dark and wintry.

Let me know what you think of this polish or if you have it and how you like it.

Thanks for reading! :) 

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