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Avon is a brand I've been familiar with for about 2-3 years now, as I get a magazine delivered to my door, I write down the products/items I want and pop it outside the doorstep and the lovely Avon representative I'm fortunate to have, comes for payment and in a short while comes again to deliver my order. It's convenient for myself as I'm often ill or drained with fatigue to hop on the bus to town and bustle through a busy Boots or House of Fraser.
I'm a huge fan of dark, full lashes with some length - length is not a must for me as if I want length, I wear false eyelashes and be done with it, it's more reliable than wearing a mascara that supposedly makes you look like you are wearing false lashes- and 99.9% of my experience with them is, no it does not. Anyway, I was browsing through the catalogue trying to decide whether to stick to my back-up mascara of Supershock or just to try something new, as I only use my back-up mascara if I'm just doing a day to day nothing special thing, but if I go out to college or actually spending time outside I use my regular one (ahem, that works...). According to Avon, Dazzling Diva will make your eyelashes look 5x FULLER lashes with a hint of sparkle so I figured, hey if it'll make my eyelashes look fuller and provide the black colour just like Supershock does, but also provide sparkle that Supershock doesn't, then I can't go wrong. Right? Wrong!
I took the plastic packaging away - no box, just a plastic cover which states the ingredients, colour and etc. I liked the tube as it was black with gold sparkles which were clearly visible (unlike the 'sparkle' in the mascara!) As I opened the top to reveal the wand I was disappointed that it was thin with short thin bristles but the pictures in the catalogue didn't include an image of the wand. As I pulled the wand out I noticed that the smallest amount of mascara was attached to the bristles, so deciding to try to apply it, I did. It didn't seem that any mascara was actually coming off onto my lashes so yet again I tried MULTIPLE times to get some product onto the wand but nothing seem to really come onto it! I was shocked and confused and by that point I didn't have much faith in the product.
So, I decided to give it a shot and apply it as I would any mascara. After applying one coat I stood in the mirror wondering if there was even any mascara in the tube as nothing was on my lashes, or so it seemed there wasn't. After repeatedly doing at least 4-5 coats on all I could see was that it was separating my lashes (a little too far actually and made it look like one of those thin spiders were on my eyes...) and it made my lashes seem the tiniest bit longer than they are...like extremely small amount. It didn't make my eyelashes seem fuller whatsoever, you can not even notice I'm wearing mascara - and for some people they like that and want a natural look...in that case, don't even use this, chances are your lashes will look the same bare! However, I bought this mascara going by Avon's word that it will make them look fuller - okay it's a bit too bold to say that they'll look 5x fuller, but I'd at least expect them to seem at least a bit fuller! Also the colour...it might as well be transparent than black! I had no colour payoff at all and had to coat my lashes individually to have the tiniest bit of black on them. And sparkle? There is none visible unless you're looking on the tube itself!
It might seem that maybe I already have black full lashes naturally and that's why I'm not noticing it? Nope, I have thin light lashes!
Unfortunately, there are is only one positive I can see in using this mascara...
---After many coats (in my experience) you may(!) achieve a natural look with separated lashes. It doesn't clump or stick the lashes to each other like many mascara's do.
At the price of £8.50 from Avon, I would never ever buy this mascara again.
I bought this lipstick in the shade 'Heart' online on a total whim, as I returned my Nars matte lipstick to House of Fraser and figured I'd try Bobbi Brown.
The first time I came across this lipstick was at the counter and I swatched the shade 'Jenna' on my hand and she let me try it on my lips - sadly I walked away from it indecisive. I'm quite a snob when it comes to lipstick; I can't really stand shimmery shades or glossy types of lipstick, I prefer matte and very very pigmented vibrant colours.
The first thing I noticed when I applied the lipstick was the highly pigmented shade; I rolled up the lipstick slightly and as soon as it reached my lips the colour was there, bright and bold! I didn't even swipe it across my lips, I literally just placed it on there quickly! I was so amazed. It really does feel creamy, not as creamy as some people might expect but the perfect level of creamy for me as I mentioned I don't like glossy feel of lipstick, I like feeling it's there and not budging when I move my lips.
The shade is quite extreme for me, I normally go for nude lips. However, I bought 'Heart' which is this glorious red - the sort of red you'd see Marilyn Monroe wearing! The colour is daring compared to my pale complexion but it really does flatter the shape of my lips - very thick and perky, almost as if I pout all the time! The way it looks and feels reminds me of crushed velvet! I really can't explain how great the colour and feel of this lipstick is, it is truly as it states, creamy matte! I love how I don't have to apply a lip balm before applying, like I do with most lipsticks and before applying my lips were chapped and you can't even see a single line in my lips, it's just so smooth!
The staying power is impressive for a matte, I mean most mattes have a long lasting colour compared to more silky shimmery lipsticks but this Bobbi Brown one is amazing! It does, as expected transfer onto a cup or whatever when I drink, but the colour stays on my lips exactly as before and I don't need to top it up! It stays between drinking, eating, smoking and whatever else you do! The staying power is around 5 hours on a good day (without having to re-apply!)
***I'm not some computer savvy geek expert; I don't know the technicality of all the weird and wonderful's of my Macbook Pro but I feel correct in assuming most people do not understand every detail of such a powerful and modern machine! All I know is that I can review it on how it suits me, how I can work with it and I've done a little research on what to talk about so I feel fairly confident that I won't be rambling on about anything that's useful - just keep in mind, I'm not one of those Mac genius'! ***
I've had my fair share of laptop's, desktops and notebooks and it's come to my attention I am a disaster when it comes to technology; I download things knowing nothing about anti-virus protection or data limits on my broadband, I let my cats walk across it, I go in public with it and maybe spill some coffee on it and yeah, I've broken quite a few laptops in my past!
The first time I ever touched a Mac was when I bought an old cheap iMac from eBay hoping I could so some bits and bobs on it to help me with designing, but of course me being completely clueless I didn't know that the operating system I installed was too advanced for the iMac and as the iMac's Apple Care was expired all Apple told me to do is try to Google how to find out how to solve it, or pay £35 for advice from a Genius - who of course wouldn't do anything except talk to me on the phone, the problem wouldn't be fixed unless I paid £££!
Fast forward to now, after my I had a quick love affair with my boyfriend's old Macbook air or whatever (haha see I'm clueless) which my cat ruined with diet coke (my bad, to be honest) - I've had my best friend for 5-6 months now A.K.A my Macbook Pro!
I'm quite a snob when it comes to the appearance of technology - you could give me a Macbook Pro with a normal appearance of your usual laptop and I'd sigh and be reluctant to be out with it! Stupid, as this machine is so great for me, but hey I did say I'm a snob!
The Macbook Pro is silver all over, except for the black keyboard and frame around the screen. The keyboard has a feature where you can have a light appear under the keys, which is very useful if you're typing at night and it looks very jazzy. The laptop is thin and light compared to other laptop's, Apple is known for it's slim products, including their Ipod's and Iphones. On the front of the lid there is the Apple logo which lights up when the Macbook is in use, and shuts off when the laptop is shut down.
You have to be quite careful with general wear and tear as scratches and marks are extremely visible on the silver, however Mac provide a Keyboard Cleaner which has a little bristle brush where you swipe away dust, then spray their cleaner and wipe away with the foam/sponge like side of the block it provides. Mac also provide a Macbook cleaner, you simply spray the liquid on and wipe in one direction motions and smudges or fingerprints are gone - although it does not work too well on scratches, it dulls them down but you can still see them.
In my experience, mainly the bottom of the Macbook and the lid gets some scratches but not too noticeable. It all depends on how well you take care of it.
There are some funky little accessories for your Macbook, not provided by Apple or distributed by them but you can easily find them online on a site like Amazon.
Firstly, there's really clever stickers designed which you can put on your lid where the apple is. One I really like is the Disney Princess, Snow White holding the apple! There's also Stitch from 'Lilo and Stitch' eating the apple!
There are also multiple covers for your keyboard in a range of colours from neon pink to rainbow keys - however I don't know how well these work for typing and using the background keyboard lights, with.
***I am merely writing about apps or features I am aware of and/or own myself***
The Macbook runs on the MAC OS X operating system. My Macbook has duel core Intel Core i5 and the processor speed is 2.5GHz and although I don't know the technical side of this; I find that it's extremely fast and can handle me doing tasks from multiple demanding programs such as Photoshop or for editing videos and etc. On rare occasions I have innocent slowness or occasionally the mouse will freeze but in less than 2 minutes it will be fine again - there was a time that Chrome would freeze, Facetime would mess up and etc but I took it to the genius bar and they sorted it and now it works perfect again. The fact that it easily copes with many programmes working at one is brilliant for me, as a designer my mind bounces from one side to the other and I tend to do everything at once instead of doing one job at a time and my Macbook makes it very easy for me to do so.
My 13inch Macbook Pro has the Intel HD Graphics 4000 Processor and as stated on the Apple website; everything is more fluid and smooth, especially videos I watch and it doesn't drain the battery as I'd expect it to.
At first, 13inch sounded quite small to me and I would have much preferred the 15inch, but after using it and realising that it's really efficient and I personally wouldn't find much use for the 15inch. It's more compact and portable in my opinion and it's just a really smart, modern looking machine!
One of my favourite features on my Macbook - and my Iphone 5 - is Facetime. I can call anyone around the world who owns an Apple product such as an Iphone, Macbook, iMac, iPad and etc. I normally use it on my Macbook and it is fun, it's basically like Skype but with a better quality video and picture and much faster and doesn't crash - my only wish is that it would have a typing feature, so I use imessage to talk in private if there's someone in the room or whatever.
Talking about iMessage, I like the fact that if my phone has died or if someone isn't near theirs, I can send a message to another person with a iPhone and/or macbook, imac, ipad and etc and it'll appear to them. If someone texts me, I can see it on my phone and on my Macbook! It sends pictures and GIFs easily too, also documents and files!
The trackpad on the Macbook is extremely multi-use and I much prefer it to a mouse you plug in - or of course, use wireless. With the trackpad you can pinch and zoom on pictures or webpages, you can flick through pictures just with your fingers, you can click anywhere on it so no need for those left click right click buttons and it's just a super clever little feature; you think it won't be that much use to you but it really does make things easier and more convenient!
Apple states that the battery life lasts 7 hours; I don't particularly notice it lasts THAT long but it does last quite a while, it helps if you don't use the features like the keyboard lights and etc if you want to make the battery last longer, and maybe it's just me, but when I plug in and charge it, it charges very quickly compared to other devices I've used in the past. On the left hand side of your macbook, where you'd find your disc drive on the right hand side, is a small botton on the far end, you can click on it and there will be tiny dots illustrating how much battery you have left! It's very helpful if you're about to use your laptop on the go shortly and don't know if you need to bring your charger or not!
I use the Webcam frequently and I use the feature 'Photobooth' a lot, I love how you can change the scenery, add jazzy little things and when recording a video the sound is excellent too so the microphone is good. You can add your photo or video to iPhoto and iPhoto also pops up when I connect my iPhone.
I could talk and ramble all day about many of the amazing features the Macbook has, but instead I'm going to list my favourites that I believe would be useful if you bought a Macbook, and what you wouldn't get from another laptop or just not as good!
-Notes (the ones you can use on the iphone, too and you can sync them).
-imovie and iphoto.
The Macbook Pro 13inch is currently £999 from Apple (http://www.apple.com/uk/) and if you would find use of these features and would use it frequently and find that your current laptop or desktop doesn't perform like this Macbook, I highly suggest that you purchase one.
You get Apple Care with it, which lasts for 1 year from the time you buy it and I also suggest you buy the extra 2 year Apple Care after that, because even though it's unlikely that a major error will go wrong with your Macbook, but it happens sometimes and you don't want to be paying another load of £££ when you just paid £999 for it!
I don't think that a Macbook will be that useful to people who just use it to go online and save documents and just the usual 'normal' things, most laptops would be efficient enough for that. But if you're going to start a creative product or would find it helpful for your career then it's definitely worth investing in.
Mine is fairly new as I've had it 5 months, but it definitely works like it did when I first had it and like I explained at the start, if you buy the cleaning products from Apple you can keep it looking new and wonderful for a long time!
TIGI Bed Head is one fantastic brand; from their bright and bold packaging, heavenly scents and products that work wonders; one statement product is their Hard Head Hairspray!
A hairspray that has a medium to high hold, stickiness-free texture without the strong somewhat alcoholic scent.
~~Application and performance~~
The best way to use Hard Head is to untangle your hair before creating your hair-do (unless you're 'teasing' your hair - which I will get to), shake the can and spray 15cm away from your hair. Hard Head has the ability to hold a hairstyle without matting the hair and having the effect of superglue - you can comb through the hair to make small changes and adjustments and for good measures; add another little spritz.
For teasing your hair, you should section your hair and spray by the roots and then using a pintooth comb, comb using a backward motion from the direction of your hair. Be cautious of spraying too much and too close to the roots as you will clog the hair and it will become stiff. Try and spray with paused sprits' as you will get more of a controlled medium hold. Hard Head is suitable for teasing/back-combing your hair as unlike most hairspray's, it does not hold the hair in the exact position if you do not intend it to; therefore you can create volume and height using back-combing without it standing up by itself.
It's performance as a hairspray is great and does not have the inconveniences of most usual hairspray's on the market.
~~Texture, scent, practicality~~
When used correctly, Hard Head does not matte hair, does not clog the roots or pores together, does not create tangles and you can brush it out and then shampoo and condition as normal. Using this product correctly does not create issues with product build up and granted you use it sparingly, it will not damage your cuticle of your hair as long as you shampoo it out thoroughly and apply conditioner.
The scent is so much more pleasant compared to so many other hairsprays, I would not be embarrassed to sit on a bus in public and have the person behind me become nauseated from the ugly strong scents a lot have.
If only TIGI provided a smaller, more portable can it would be very practical for people on the go who are in windy or rainy weather who may need to do a touch-up!
~~Value, aesthetics of the product ~~
TIGI products are known for their price tag; and the majority of the products are worth the price tag. However, if you want a hairspray that provides the quality Hard Head does you will have to shop around a lot and yes you may find a few which are a few pounds less, however with the size of Hard Head it will last a long time - mine has lasted around 9 months!
Hard Head is in a large silver can which isn't as bold and beautiful as most of the TIGI Bed Head range, they could at least add some sparkles, eh? But it's practical and it works, what more can you ask more? - Except for a funkier image!
Personally, I wouldn't spend the money on this product again for the sole reason that I do not find the need for hairspray often and it would be sitting on my shelf collecting dust! - unless I find a good deal, then why not? It's useful! However if you usually wear large fancy up-do's and hairstyles then this will be a good addition to your hairstyling products!
****Here's a disclaimer!- - - I'm not a professional hairdresser, a trainee in college yes, but not professional and the comments about this product I make are from my experience and how I suited to it - it will not be with everyone, your hair might not be as desired and please if you do buy, follow the manufacture's safety guidelines of use. ****
I've been dying my hair since I was 12 years old, ever since I was a little rebel child I've been practically every colour of the rainbow - just not all the shades! So I am quite a snob in my colours and brands and I constantly switch and change, mix them together as if the colours are part of an art palette and slap 'em on! *Don't do this if you're not experienced in dying hair, even your own*.
La Riche Directions hair dye is simple to use compared to a lot of mainstream 'normal' hair dyes...no mixing, simply pre-lighten your hair if necessary, wash with a PH balanced shampoo to give the dye the best of it's ability, mix the colours to create your unique shade if you wish (why not? be different!) and apply from root to tip, small sections as you normally would - it's really just common sense and following the instructions.
If you're very unsure I highly suggest watching a YouTube video of someone dying their hair with this dye as it's quite popular.
Personally, La Riche Directions is one of my favourites, if not THE favourite of the individual unique semi-permanent colouring dye (I have yet to find a permanent one). The staying power is the best compared to the other brands I've used, but what I do to make it stay more - and get the exact shade I want is mix it with white conditioner - any conditioner at all! I find my colour can last a month without be needing to top it up - that's excluding root growth, I mean I am an avid user of dry shampoo and I wash with colder water to open up my pores less but I believe it is the formula of La Riche that helps it stay!
The colour is pretty much true to what is advertised but like I mentioned before, I mix and match mine to create my exact desired shade. Checking on the website - it also states too that you can mix. Everyone's hair is different and you cannot guarantee that the colour will be completely 100% exact but you can ensure that it will be bright, vivid, unique colour that will stay to it's upmost ability to if you take the precautions to keep it vibrant.
In my case, the price is so reasonable as I do a 70-30 ratio if conditioner and dye, it just lasts ages and the best thing is, it's re-usable! Unless of course you've had it opened for years...but because it's not mixed and developing, you can store it away until you need to re-dye or top up your hair! PERFECT, right?
I most definitely love this product, and as I review it from all angles and aspects, I can whole-heartedly say that it is my favourite hair dye for the colours I dye my hair! (Mainly pinks and purples)
How easy is the application? 9/10.
Quality of the product? 9/10.
End result? 10/10.
TIGI is one of my ultimate perfect brands; whether it's the shampoo and conditioners, hair creams, serums or sprays - my hair, or myself, cannot live without their products!
TIGI Bed Head's 'Spoil Me' de-frizzer spray is multi-use in the sense that I use it as a light heat protector or to seal my style before blow-drying or straightening AND for a touch up spritz a couple of days after if I have a special up-do that takes forever that just needs fixing a little!
I dye my hair frequently and use a shameful amount of excessive heat equipment on my hair and sometimes even when straightened, fly-aways can stray up so much as if I've been electrocuted! I simply shampoo and condition my hair, towel dry and generously spray Spoil Me onto my hair, as soon as I blow dry and/or straighten, curl or crimp my hair, it's smoother, controlled and defined style and lasts without me needing to attack myself with hairspray. If I've been outside and come back home and it's a bit disgruntled, I'll simply spritz a bit more on and ta-da! looks freshly done.
The down-side is, the price...even though there is a lot of product in the can and can last easily up to 2 months if used correctly.
TIGI have so many products it would be so much simpler if they combined some together...if this had an actual heat protecting element in it it would be perfect!
Lush is a company that produces handmade bath and cosmetic products, including but not limited to, 'bath bombs', 'bath melts', face masks, soaps, and fairly new to the brand - cosmetics. Lush are against animal cruelty and testing on animals, therefore are yummy smelling sweethearts - in my opinion.
Imagine you're in the cinema, first date and you're going to go in for the kill! You pucker up your lips ready to smooch and 'oh darn! they're chipped' whip out your Lush Popcorn Lip Scrub, rub some on, lick your lips and ahh smooth and tasting delicious!
At first, I was very much on the fence about the taste...first it's salty and you're like "oh dear lawwwwwd!" but then it's sweet - very much like popcorn. Even now I wince at the saltiness to start with, but I still adore it.
I adore the lip scrub's in general...specifically Bubblegum but Popcorn was in one of my gift boxes at Christmas and I have to admit, I cannot choose between them!
The lip scrub is made up of sugar and therefore you can lick it up off your lips without a nasty taste! I find their lip scrub's so useful before I apply my lipstick or even lip balm, it's a very serious routine for me as if you're wearing something like matte finish lipstick and you have dry cracked lips, your lipstick will bleed into the cracks of your lips! Scrub 'em nice and enjoy the taste, and you're set to go!
You don't even have to use it before lipstick, use it on it's own and leave your lips natural - your lips will be soft and smelling and tasting luscious.
I can't pick a flaw in this product, it's a major handbag essential for me!
Lush is a company that produces handmade bath and cosmetic products, including but not limited to, 'bath bombs', 'bath melts', face masks, soaps, and fairly new to the brand - cosmetics. Lush are against animal cruelty and testing on animals.
Although however great the brand and company are, it does not change the fact that Think Pink the bath 'bomb' or 'ballistic' is by far not my favourite product. It's not just Think Pink, it's the majority of the bath bombs that I dislike. They're a great fun gift for now an again but they're not exactly practical if you're looking for a genuine bath with bubbles and froth to soak your muscles in.
One bath bomb is simply not enough, in my opinion. If you want a real bath, and I mean a relaxing BUBBLE bath then you have to use 2, even 3 sometimes, to get what you want. Yes it's all "ooooh" and "ahhhh" when it fizzes, but after that it seems you have just coloured water and rarely anything in there. With Think Pink...you have coloured water, and a few petals from the flowers they attach inside it. and even AFTER THREE bath bombs I sometimes add some bubble bath or shower gel quickly in because it just doesn't do the job for me. However, Think Pink has a lovely scent where it's quite floral and after your body really does feel smooth and silky.
I like how some of them have glitter inside or little fancy bits and bobs - like the flower petals in Think Pink and most of the scents are pleasant, and after your bath you may get some glittery sheen to your skin after.
At £2.50-£3.99 I would recommend using Lush Bath Bomb's like Think Pink for a special occasion, maybe even for Mother's Day just before a nice meal in the evening, the special lady will be smelling lovely and fresh!
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Positives; smooths skin, add a glittery sheer, fun to put in the bath, pleasant smell.
Negatives; doesn't provide bubbles and too expensive.
'Snow Fairy' is not just your 'normal' shower gel where in most mornings you half-heartedly rub it all over your body, yawn a lot, sigh and jump out - no no no! Snow Fairy for your hair, your body and in my crazy case...clothes (yes, I adore the scent so much I use it to wash some of my clothes in!) You don't sigh and freshen up in the morning with this multi-purpose heaven in a bottle, it feels like you're walking through the video of Katy Perry's 'California Girls' music video, surrounded by candyfloss, lollipops, bubblegum, sweeties and all things yummy!
Snow Fairy is an unusual product that's limited to the Christmas period, it doesn't smell of wood burning on a fire, Christmas cake with brandy, cinnamon and all those festive scents we're bombarded with even as soon as October. Snow Fairy is dripping with candyfloss, bubblegum...just CANDY scent, it's like walking through a candy store eyes glistening in awe of all the glorious munchies! The only downside to this product is that it doesn't taste as good as it smells (singing in the shower plus bubbles everywhere equals ew!)
Considering I'm practically Snow Fairies biggest fan - there are some downsides unfortunately. Lush is known for it's body loving, skin smothering products that leave you with gorgeous feeling and often looking skin, however Snow Fairy is pretty much an average shower gel in the sense that even though it's not like sandpaper on your skin, it's not exactly moisturising but hey - that's what body cream is for!
Snow Fairy is worth every penny - even though there are an awful lot of them (in my opinion, it's quite expensive) and I usually stock up on them around Winter, because as stated, it is unfortunately limited to the Christmas period only. However, it's a treat to look forward to when opening prezzies...or even buying yourself a truly scrumptious unique shower-gel!