Friday, 31 May 2013

May Favourites

Hi guys! Welcome to my second ever monthly favourites post - if you didn't catch my April favourites you can read it HERE.

First up are Barry M Gelly Hi Shine in Papaya - a beautiful orange shade that's all over the blogsophere, and the Maybelline Color Show Polka Dots in black and white. I only bought the Maybelline top coat a couple of weeks ago but I love it already, it creates such a special and unique look!

My fashion favourite for the month is this monochrome 3/4 sleeve blazer, which I bought from New Look a couple of months ago and posted about HERE. It's a really easy jacket to throw on and keep off a chill on those colder Spring days (of which we've had a few!)

My go-to lipstick throughout may has been this Gosh Velvet Touch one in Exotic. It was part of my combined haul which I posted about HERE, and I will be posting a full review soon. It's a perfect orange Spring shade and so easy to wear without drying out the lips!

My Primark watercolour sunglasses have only been needed in the past week or so but qualify for my May favourites simply because I love them. They are so pretty and perfect for sunny days and picnicking in the park! I posted about them in a haul HERE.

Jewellery-wise I have been wearing this little whale pendant a lot - it's a subtle but quirky way to add personality to any outfit, including work wear! If you didn't read my post about it, this was part of my first haul from Cheap Frills (HERE).

Finally, a skincare favourite. I had never used micellar water until I picked up this one from the B. range at Superdrug (post HERE). It's really changed the way I remove my make up on an evening, and I can already see the difference in my skin! I know there are plenty of other drugstore brands offering micellar water, but B. is the only one I am aware of that is guaranteed cruelty free.

What do you think of my May favourites? Which is your 'favourite' of my picks?

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Barry M Moisturising Lip Paint - shade 161

Hi guys. You will probably already know that I'm a massive fan of Barry M, and also a bit of a lipstick addict. Put those two things together and you get quite the dangerous cocktail, especially when Barry M have brought out a reworked formula for their Lip Paints which is allegedly more moisturising..

The packaging for the Moisturising Lip Paints is bright fuschia, but otherwise exactly the same as the usual black Barry M Lip Paints.. I picked up shade 161, a beautiful coral shade. 

This was the stand out shade of the range for me, it just seemed so perfect for Spring and such a pretty coral pink shade! I was so excited to try it for the first time, I popped it on as soon as I got home! It's quite difficult to apply and does drag on the lips, but if you persevere you can get a really good coverage. I imagine this is quite difficult to apply with a lip brush.

Here's the colour on my lips - I love it and have been wearing it on the weekends ever since I bought it! It lasts for hours without fading, doesn't dry out my lips in the slightest (and I have quite dry lips naturally) and doesn't bleed. It's genuinely a winner for me, and I'm quite keen to try some of the other shades! For the price this is by far the best value for money lipstick I've come across in a while.

Barry M Moisturising Lip Paints are £4.49 available from Superdrug online (HERE) or in store from Boots or Superdrug.

Have you tried the Barry M Moisturising Lip Paints yet? Which shade is your favourite?

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

My First Beauteco Box

You may have read my post about my first ever Glossybox (HERE) - well the beauty box bug caught me and I decided to give the newest beauty box on the scene, Beauteco Box, a go! This box claims to be a bit more eco-friendly than its rivals...

I loved the packaging of the box, however the first thing I noticed was that unlike the Glossybox, Beauteco don't give you a reuseable, pretty box - I assume that's part of the eco-driven ideals of the company but it did make me wonder why both boxes are the same price (£10 + P&P)...

One of the first things I liked about the box was the little 'menu' of products which was sat atop the packaging when I opened it up - too cute!

It also tells you the price of each item (full size) which I think would be helpful to anyone considering purchasing the items in the box.

The green packaging is definitely more to my tastes than the pink Glossybox, but that's more of a personal thing than a deal breaker.

Inside were the five products which I had chosen from the website when I placed my order. See, that's the 'USP' of the Beauteco Box - you can choose from a number of variations of box contents (three I think ) which helps to make sure what you receive is suited to you personally. Now this has it's pros and cons - a positive is that you won't receive an item you hate and have no use for, but the negative is that there is no surprise, and the element of surprise was something I enjoyed about the Glossybox. That's even though I received 3 items I didn't like and ended up giving them away...

Here are the items I received, two anatomicals products, a Melvita Ultra Cleansing Rose Oil, Dr Bragi Age Management Moisturiser and Mitchell and Peach Body Cream. I am excited to try all of these products as I haven't used any of the brands before. The anatomicals are both full sized but the others are sample sized (although the full sized Dr Bragi moisturiser is £120!)

My only niggle about Beauteco Box is that they don't dispatch your order when it is placed, instead they have two dispatch dates per month which means you could be waiting up to a couple of weeks depending on when you place your order. This isn't really a good idea, in my opinion, when the other beauty box companies dispatch as soon as you place your order. I was left a little dismayed at the delay in receiving my box, but it's not a total put off.

Overall I am happy with my experience with Beauteco Box, but I do think the lack of a reuseable box and lack of prompt delivery may make me choose another beauty box in future. You can order a Beauteco Box for £10 plus P&P HERE.

What do you think of the Beauteco Box? Have you received one before?

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Tuesday Tales #4 - Update

Hi guys, so after last week's Tuesday Tales (HERE) was a little heavy, I thought this week I could have a little chat about what's been going on with me lately!

You might already know that I'm currently living in London, and working as a trainee solicitor. The legal profession requires solicitors to train for two years before they become a qualified solicitor, and I qualify at the beginning of September this year - the time has just flown by. With such a big milestone coming up, I have been considering where I am and where I want to be in life, and I've got a few big changes that will be happening this summer!

The first big change is that I'm moving - out of London and back to Leeds where my family and most of my friends are based. Perhaps you remember that Leeds is also where my boyfriend lives, which means that we will be able to move in together after what will be two and a half years of long distance. I am planning a whole post dedicated to this topic, but what I will say today is that this is both the scariest and the most exciting thing! I have spent almost all of my adult life in long distance relationships, and moving in with my boyfriend is a pretty big deal to me! Being located in Leeds also means I will be able to reinvolve myself with my family and stay in touch better with those closest to me. I can't wait.

The big move will be happening in the first couple of weeks of August, which is actually pretty soon! We are currently looking at houses online and trying to find where we'll live when I move - the best thing about moving from London to Leeds (and not the other way around like 3 years ago!) is the dramatic shift in the quality and size of housing you can afford. I currently live in a pretty dinky one bedroom flat in zone 2, but when I move (if all goes to plan) it will be to a house with a garden, at least two bedrooms and hopefully set in a village or somewhere semi-rural. It's going to be such a welcome change as I have been craving outdoor space and fresh air since I moved down to London, and I'll try and keep you updated along the way (the easiest way to keep up to date with me is Twitter - @ElspethDaisy).

The second big change is that I am moving jobs - the law firm I currently work for is a City firm (which will mean very little to most of you, I'm sure) and doesn't have regional offices. I have managed to secure a position with a top firm in Leeds, and having gone through the motions with the recruitment process I'm now pretty impatient to start! The way things have worked out I won't be starting until the beginning of September, giving me a few weeks to make the big move, get settled and have some much-needed rest and downtime. It's going to be great and can't come around fast enough!

Have you had any big exciting news recently in your life? I'd love to hear about it!

Monday, 27 May 2013

SAVE don't SPEND #15

Hi guys, another Monday another installment of my spending diary. I hope wherever you are you've had a lovely weekend, and if you're in the UK you've managed to make the most of the bank holiday weekend! My plans for today involve lazing around in the sunshine and a quick trip to the supermarket - rock and roll.

12.00 -  Boots (who knew stamps were so expensive?!)
£12.00 - total

2.50 - Marks and Spencer
£2.50 - total

6.90 - lunch
£6.90 - total

4.95 - lunch
£4.95 - total 

£0.00 - total

20.00 - Topshop (denim skater skirt)
15.00 - Marks and Spencer (boring underwear - yawn)
15.27 - Whole Foods
£30.27 - total
£20.00 - naughty total

24.00 - Primark
17.45 - Muji
£17.45 - total
£24.00 - naughty total

TOTAL: £74.07

FINALLY! I'm under my £80/week budget for normal spends, hooray! I'm so happy this week I'm under my limit, despite the £44 of naughty spends on a skirt and some summery shoes (2 pairs, in both colours of course...!) They were technically unnecessary spends but I'm in the midst of a crazy clear out which will eventually involve flogging most of my unwanted stuff on eBay (again..) so I am trying not to feel too guilty. Plus the shoes I originally wanted were £40 so getting two pairs of shoes and a skirt for just over that amount is pretty nifty! I'm hoping to continue my winning streak and take my own lunch to work this week. Wish me luck!

Are you trying to save money? How is it going for you?

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Leicester Bank Holiday Haul

Hi guys! Happy bank holiday Sunday, I hope you're enjoying the weekend. You may have read my Tuesday Tales post a couple of weeks ago (HERE), where I told you all about my recent trip to Leicester. It involved a little bit of shopping, so I thought today I would share my purchases with you!

This black jersey flippy dress from Topshop was something I umm-ed and ahh-ed about for ages, but when I saw it in the Leicester store I just bought it without thinking. I'm glad I did because it's a very flattering fit, and for only £20 it's something I'm sure I'll get plenty of wear out of. My favourite way to style it so far is with some black polka dot tights. Link HERE.

Whilst in Leicester we also stopped off at Wardrobe - an amazing bargain-filled boutique store which had plenty for me to get excited about! I managed to restrain myself to only a few bargain buys, including this Vero Moda blouse with cute collar detail for only £20!

I also picked up this sheer nautical style Cutie blouse, with its beautiful pearl buttons, for £22. I love this shirt, it's so simple and unique and I always receive compliments when I wear it. I like to wear this for work with tapered trousers and brogues.

I picked up another white Vero Moda blouse from Wardrobe - I love this one! It has the sweetest collar and sheer flower pattern, I have been wearing this for work and for casual too. A firm favourite for Spring already, and only £20!

We also stopped off at Internacionale where I nabbed this basic black jersey skater skirt for £8.

The House of Fraser in Leicester is an outlet store, and whilst I couldn't justify buying big heavy Yankee Candles that I'd have to lug back down to London on the train, I did pick up a few bargain smaller candles which are just as beautifully scented. I think these were £1.04 each!

Last but not least I picked up the June issue of Marie Claire, as it has a couple of Avon freebies in it! If you're a follower of Bee's Knee's you'll know I really rate Avon, and I had to pick up a red lipstick for only £2.50 with Marie Claire!

This is the lipstick, it's a gorgeous summery shade and will receive its own blog post sometime soon!

So that's everything - phew! I didn't intend to pick anything up but I couldn't resist, especially when Wardrobe is such a wonderful place to shop. I definitely recommend Leicester for a day of shopping, it has everything you could possibly want!

How are you spending your bank holiday weekend?

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Natural Collection Lip Liner in 'Ruby Rose' and 'Plum'

If you're a long time reader of Bee's Knees, you'll know I am a real lipstick girl. My collection is quite large, although I don't actually own that many lip liners. I think I only had these two lipliners before I purchased some from Natural Collection at Boots.

I picked up two when Boots was doing its Buy One Get One Half Price promotion across make up. The two shades I plumped for were Ruby Rose and Plum

These are generic pencil liners, £1.99 each so not loads to fork out (and even less if you bag them on offer like I did!)

The swatch shows Plum on top and Ruby Rose on the bottom. Plum is perfect to line most darker red or berry lipsticks, and Ruby Rose good for brighter shades. Both also work well on their own with the lip filled in, but Ruby Rose in particular looks gorgeous as it's a nice red/pink tone.

Have you tried any of Natural Collection's range? What do you think?

ps don't forget to check out my blog sale HERE - Revlon, Barry M, Ciate & more!

Friday, 24 May 2013

Dainty Doll Cream Blushers

This post has been a long time coming! If you're a follower of Bee's Knees you'll know that I went a little crazy over the past couple of months with purchases of Dainty Doll products from Fragrance Direct. I've already reviewed the lipsticks HERE, but today I'm reviewing the cream blushes I bought. 

Dainty Doll is a brand that caters specifically for pale skinned girls, like me, and I find their blushers across the board are well pigmented but are the perfect shades for pale skin because even heavily applied they aren't too bold. The cream blushers are best applied either with your fingers or with a stippling brush as opposed to a traditional blush brush - I use the Real Techniques Stippling Brush before blending in with the Buffing Brush.

Left > Right: 001 Paper Roses,002 Orange County Girl, 003 Billion Dollar Babies

I have found every shade of these cream blushers to be incredibly good quality, they last all day and are easily blended into the skin to give a nice subtle but made up look. The packaging is gorgeous with a handy mirror for on the go application. Please note that my swatches show the products blended in to the skin because this is how I wear them on my face.

This is Paper Roses, a gorgeous pretty pale pink that is ideal for Spring! I find wearing this adds that 'just pinched' look to my cheeks without making me look too made up. This isn't my favourite of the cream blushes but it's a nice colour to have in my collection. 

Here is Orange County Girl, my favourite of the cream blushers. As you can see, this has some gold shimmer running through it as well as the peachy pink colour. I've read a lot of bloggers comparing this to Nars Orgasm and although I haven't tried Nars myself, from the photos I've seen online it does seem incredibly similar but a more subtle shade suitable for porcelain skins. This is a really easy blush to wear - because it's also a highlighter you just need to brush it across your cheekbones to add some dimension to your face and brighten your cheeks up.

Finally this is Billion Dollar Babies. I have been using this as a contour colour because it's a matte pale taupe so ideal for this purpose! It's absolutely brilliant to contour with - because it's a cream it's a dream to blend into the skin and not so dark to be obvious. As a pale girl I have struggled to find suitable shades to contour with but this is spot on and I would recommend it to anyone else who's stuck for a contour colour!

I am really happy I bought these cream blushers, they're all very good and beautiful in their own way. Orange County Girl is my favourite but Billion Dollar Babies is also a winner for contouring, and Paper Roses is a nice one to have in my collection. For £1.99 each from Fragrance Direct buying all three will only set you back £5.97, which isn't even the price you'd pay for a blush from most brands! With an RRP of £13.50 I'd still think they were good products even full price!

I highly recommend these for other pale faced beauties but there is the potential for them to work for more neutral and darker skins tones too because of the high pigmentation. Click HERE to buy from Fragrance Direct.

What do you think of Dainty Doll? Have you tried any of these cream blushers?

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Fabulous Nails #42

Hi guys. Today's fabulous nails post features one of MUA's Mystical Glitter nail polishes, and is a lovely bright blue.

Blue nail polishes make up a pretty big part of my collection because blue is a really simple but beautiful colour which looks good on everyone regardless of skin tone. I think blue glitter is even more special, so I really love this combination!

I started out by painting my nails with two coats of this oldie (but goodie) Rimmel I <3 Lasting Finish in 198 Azure. I have owned this nail polish for as long as I can remember, most likely over 10 years and it's still going strong! It's such a bold bright blue it's always a winning colour.

I then painted my nails with two coats of this MUA Mystical Glitter in the shade Mermaid, which is something I purchased absolutely ages ago but didn't get around to wearing for a while (#bloggerproblems!) The glitter particles in this polish are very small and fine, which creates a more subtle look on the nail than other glitters I own and have tried. It's a perfect match for the Rimmel Azure and I think added some depth to the overall colour. A winning combination!

You can purchase the MUA Mystical Glitter online for £2.50 HERE, or pick it up instore at Superdrug. Rimmel I <3 Lasting Finish in Azure is available online HERE for £2.99 or pick it up at your local drugstore (cannot believe this polish is still on sale!).

What do you think of this look? Are glitter nails over now it's Spring or are you still loving them?