Summer Beauty Haul: Rimmel, Eyelure, Dainty Doll

Tuesday 16 July 2013

A few more favourite things I've been buying recently to tell you about...

Rimmel Nail Polishes - 60 Seconds in 'Too Pool to Tango' and 'Caramel Cupcake' and I Heart Lasting Finish in 'Black Cherries'

Like every other girl in the world, I'm massively into my coloured polished and funky finishes at the moment. My favourite ranges are Nails Inc and Models Own, and this is where I'd say I buy 90% of my nail polishes. And yet, at the moment, I'm completely loving Rimmel's nail polish range. They seem to be very quick off the mark getting the latest 'It' shades in, the quality is really good, and they're so cheap, its a great way to try out a shade you aren't sure about. The bottles aren't huge, but the brush is decent quality and at that price, I always seem to throw a couple in my basket when I'm cruising past their stand at the drugstore. I actually even have a few favourite shades from there, but these are my most recent purchases....

'Too Pool to Tango' is a gorgeous mint-turquoise colour. I'd say its slightly less mint green than all the Chanel Jade copies that came flooding out after the French fashion house made it the new must-have colour. I personally have never tried these sort of colours. I wondered if I was a bit too old for it! But lately, seeing so many girls rocking pastel nails for summer, I wanted to give it a go. Rimmel offered a way to do this without breaking the bank- and this lovely shade will be really wearable with a summer tan.

'Black Cherries' is a gorgeous kind of claret/blood-red colour - kind of like Nails Inc's 'Victoria' polish, which is one of my go-to shades, but shot through with a subtle bronze shimmer. My initial reaction was that this was more of a winter shade, but I actually think this could really work as a contrast when wearing whites and brights. Love a vampy summer nail!

'Caramel Cupcake' is me trying to find a 'foundation nail' shade. A couple of manicures ago, they used a gorgeous OPI shade on me that gave perfect foundation nail, but I didn't find out what it was, sadly. Since then, I've been on the hunt for a high-street alternative, and this is a really nice one.  This colour especially pops when you rock neon-pink contrast tips. I might try it with a 'Black Cherries' tip as well.

Eyelure Naturalites and Ultra Naturals

As you probably know by now, I'm big on a false flutter. I don't get on well with permanent lash extensions, so I rely on strip lashes to give me some lash power when I go out. I've even been known to sometimes wear falsies during the day - see my guide to doing it here.

There are so many girls that still seem to struggle with application and just can't do strip lashes well, but I'm the queen of them. By now, I've tried pretty much every brand going from high-end Shu Uemura and Mac to every drugstore brand, and even multi-packs from China (via eBay). But lately I've become a lot more discerning in my lash choices. And I've found other options are left sitting in my drawer because these are always the best. Eyelure lashes seem to offer me the most comfortable wear and I also believe they look the most natural.

I want to look like I have beautiful, thick lashes naturally. I don't want to look like a) Jordan b) any of the female TOWIE cast c) Ermintrude the Cow from the Magic Roundabout. In other words, I'm allergic to that spidery, synthetic look. Eyelure lashes can help me avoid this. With a couple of coats of mascara, their Naturalites line is perfect.

Crucially, they have a clear, slimline lash band, which is essential to have any hope of passing them off as your own, God-given lashes. They also use a mix of coloured fibres (brown and black, rather than straight black) to blend in better with your own lashes.

The 'Ultra Naturals' make it possible to wear fake lashes completely undetectably during the day. Love!

Dainty Doll Eyeshadow Base - 'Frankie'

Dainty Doll is a line of cosmetics launched by the ginger one from Girls Aloud, Nicola Roberts, as she continues the fight to stay relevant after their split (sorry, was that a bit catty? I'm not a fan.) I've actually always thought the line looked good- quality and cute packaging- but as it is aimed towards those with very pale skin, this golden-skinned girl didn't think she would find anything relevant in the range.

However, I found this in the make-up section of my local 99p store (yes, really. Have found Stila and Urban Decay there too in the past- for reals!) so of course I wanted to give it a go. Although it's a little pale for me, because its an eyeshadow base this doesn't matter, and a bit of a paler base can actually help 'lift' your eyeshadow colour.

I would only normally use this if I was going out and doing a big, layered shadow look, not for everyday. However, a sweep of it on its own is actually a pretty good way to 'wake up' the eye area, a la Benefit's Lemon-Aid. I'm pleased to say it works really well as a primer, and I felt it did give a smooth finish and help keep my shadow in place all night, especially paler shades that tend to just fade away quickly.

In a fix, this also makes a pretty decent concealer when topped with some translucent powder.

This is meant to be £10.50 retail, so all I can say is - I got a bargain!

L'Oreal Skin Perfection Advanced Correcting Serum

I wrote in my post about my new Summer Skin Saviors that I was in love with this new line, and since discovering their 3-in-1 Purifying Micellar Solution, I have abandoned all other cleansers. I'm now on my fourth bottle and my love shows no signs of wearing off (although do not buy it for £6.50 at Boots- I found out Asda sell it for only £2.50!).

The line was originally all cleansing items, but has now been expanded to include moisturising and skincare products too. I was recently really liking Superdrug's own-brand Optimum Advanced Lift and Firm Serum, but I ran out suddenly the other day. Superdrug means I have to go into the city, whereas there is a small Boots store in the town where I live, so lazily, I decided I'd have to try another serum. Imagine how pleased I was to find this!

First of all -  I love the packaging. The inner 12 year old in me is still all about Barbie pink. And I like the ombre and the squared tube. So shallow, I know, but packaging is crucial to me. What does it claim to do? The box says it contains LR 2412 and Perline. As far as I know, those are two made-up beauty words like 'Pro-Vitamin B5' and  the like that companies pretty much make up.

The box states that LR 2412 is a 'powerful active from 10 years of research' that 'optimises the structure of the epidermis' and although there's no mention of peptides, I'm hoping there's some in there. Meanwhile Perline is 'an association of 3 perfecting actives which act on pores, skin tone and skin texture.' For me, I'm more bothered about fine lines, but I won't say no to those!

The serum promises to 'refine skin texture, tighten pores, and even and brighten the skin tone'. This all sounds good, but I would have preferred more in the way of long-term anti-aging ingredients. To me, it seems as if this product will make a short-term, visible difference, but won't really be doing anything behind the scenes. To be honest, I want more from a serum. The whole point of them, to me, is to be anti-aging and turbocharge my moisturiser. So although I snapped this up at the offer price of £12.70, I'd expect more if I was paying the usual price of £19.99. I do so love the cleanser though, I'm prepared to give this a go- don't let me down, L'Oreal! There's a whole range of new goodies in the Skin Perfection line- eye cream, moisturiser, BB Creams. I feel like this would be a great line to get a teenager started on, because its fun and fresh and priced fairly.

And finally...

One sunny day this week, I had a go at transforming my bedside tables, and I'm so pleased with the results, I had to share them with you! Let me just say, I'm totally rubbish at DIY, so this was such an easy, low-key makeover, and I'm thrilled with the results.

So I had these pine bedside tables. They're not the most attractive tables in the world, but they were handmade by my lovely husband, with the romantic intention of furnishing our first home together before we'd moved in, so I didn't have the heart to get rid of them. Also, I find the deep drawer and the space underneath so handy for hiding all my miscellaneous crap! And when I was looking for new bedside cabinets, I found myself trying to find the same layout and failing.

It was clear they had to stay. The rest of my bedroom furniture is cream and slightly French looking, mostly from Laura Ashley. And it was actually amazingly easy to give these a cute distressed looking finish to match. First of all, we used a power sander to re-sand and refresh the wood, before giving them two coats of cream glaze (again- we made this ourselves from cheap white emulsion, mixed with a tester pot of a cappuccino brown). This was applied using a kitchen sponge. When it had dried, we gave them two coats of wax, which rubbed off some of the paint and gave that distressed look finish.

Finally, we fitted them with these cute black and white ceramic clock face handles I picked up on eBay (search 'ceramic handles'), and then...

...we had these! I love them and I think they look pretty designer considering what a low-key makeover it was. I'm also planning to decoupage the inside of the drawers with patterned wallpaper and varnish and get dark wicker baskets to sit underneath. This has really inspired me to reinvent some old furniture. We're currently planning to move and I'm serious thinking about hitting the charity shops and using paint and new handles on some old pieces to give them a new lease of life...what do you think?

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