Friday, 17 April 2015

Val Garland Mastered Online Makeup Course

We recently interviewed the one and only Val Garland for our Tuesday chat series. We were so excited for this interview as Val Garland is someone we have admired for years and I think our excitement is quite evident in the video which you can watch again here...

If you are not familiar with Val Garland's work and you are a makeup fanatic then you absolutely must check her out.
 Val is a leader in the makeup industry and her work has been featured in all of the worlds top publications including Vogue, AnOther, Vanity Fair, i-D and many more.
 There possibly isn't a famous face that she hasn't created a masterpiece on.

Jennifer Lopez for W magazine. Images courtesy of

Sienna Miller for Vogue. Images courtesy of
Emma Watson for Vogue. Image courtesy of
Kiera Knightley for W Magazine. Images courtesy of

 Alongside her editorial work Val has worked with some of the biggest brands helping them to create beautiful images for their advertising campaigns.

Lady Gaga for MAC. Images from

Cara Delevingne for TopShop. Images courtesy of
Kate Moss for McQueen. Images courtesy of

Lanvin. Image courtesy of

Her portfolio also includes more extreme makeup artistry that has certainly been the inspiration for us and many other makeup artists.

Image from

Image from

Image from

  Val has just launched Val Garland Mastered which is her new makeup school.
 This is a three month online course costing $1350 (£995).
It is not your typical course where you learn 'How to' create looks but more of an insight on how with the right attitude you can get to the top of your game in the makeup industry using key information supplied by Val and her team. Almost like a three month apprenticeship with Val, watching and learning.
 Each week you will be sent new videos and set projects to help build your knowledge and get you industry ready.
 There is an opportunity for your work to be seen and shared amongst other promising makeup artists globally.
 This course is ideal for professional makeup artists who want to progress their career. Beginners can also apply but you need to be committed and show a great passion.
 As well as information from Val herself you will also have access to information and advice from other industry insiders including us here at Pixiwoo as guest experts. We will be offering advice within the social media world of makeup artistry and giving you an insight into how we built our Pixiwoo brand and how we maintain our level of success.
 Val's team have also announced that the Mastered course is collaborating with the amazing i-D magazine to offer Mastered students incredible opportunities to promote themselves and for their work to appear on
 Check out below why Val loves i-D magazine...

 The course begins May 15th and runs until August 15th 2015 but applications close on May 6th 2015 so don't miss out.
 You can learn more about the course via the following link and it will also give you information on how to apply.

To view more of Val Garlands work check out her Instagram account on @thevalgarland or through her agency

JT Makeup Gilding Flakes

We are like magpies here at Pixiwoo, instantly attracted to anything that catches the light!
 Check these gilding flakes out from JT Makeup.

  Gilding flakes are primarily used by makeup artists to create unique looks or for body painting however with the Summer around the corner and festival season kicking off these make a beautiful adornment for something a bit different.
 Both Nic and Sam have actually created looks using something similar so take a look again for some inspiration.... 

What we love about these little pots of treasure is that they are broken up into flakes, making them more manageable.
 There are a few colour themed pots to select from. We have the following..

Autumn Rose- Think of all of the colours created during Autumn. The beautiful burnt amber tones, rose golds and bronze.

 Gold- Standard vibrant golden flakes.

 Peacock- Peacock feathered inspiration including golds, mints and turquoise flakes.

Gilding flakes are quite fiddly to use but they are not designed to sit even and perfectly on the skin so don't be too precious about getting them even and exact. They will break and crumble but you can build them up and add pieces.
 They need to adhere to a cream or gel texture. Apply your makeup as normal and then using a flat brush press a little cream eyeshadow or vaseline over the area you wish to apply. Choose your gilding flake and roughly shape it to required size. Press onto the area carefully using tweezers. Softly buff a dry, fluffy brush over the top to smooth it down and brush away any hanging edges. You can catch any falling pieces and pop back into the pot to use again. You can layer pieces on top of each other or wear them in patches on their own.
 Use them on the face or body and have fun!
 These gilding flakes will be available soon on
but are available now from


Thursday, 16 April 2015

The Body Shop New liners

Check out this video done by Sam for Body Shop UK #Ad featuring four new liners.....

Bold Oversized felt liner
This is for those of you who like a dramatic, bold and glossy liner. Felt tip pen style application gives you a thick, black line.

Velvet Gel liner
Available in brown and black these gel based liners have a metallic hue. The twist up liner applies a fine creamy line.

Matte Kajal liner
 Highly pigmented matte liner which gives a super blended diffused line. Containing fair trade marula oil and black rose water to assist the glide of the product.

Skinny thin felt liner
 Felt tip pen style applicator but with a super fine point. Feline flicks are made super easy and will have a precise intensely black edge.

Available now from


MAC Philip Treacy

This April MAC have collaborated with world renowned couture hat designer Philip Treacy.
 The relatively small collection comprises of two highlighting powders, three lipsticks, re-promote fluidlines and paint pots.
  The collection is available later this month in selected MAC Pro locationsfree standing stores, Selfridges, Harvey Nichols, Fenwicks Brent Cross and John Lewis Southampton.

We have one of the highlighting powders in the shade Nude Pink.

A beautiful satin finish powder in a flesh toned peach. The strips of silver don't translate too much onto the skin but just gives a really subtle highlight.
 No glitter or shimmer just a soft radiance powder. Subtle enough to be dusted all over or just use on the apples of your cheeks for a natural tint.

This powder is £23.00 and comes in a standard plastic MAC style packaging, no limited edition style case unfortunately.

We have two of the lipsticks in the collection..

left: No Faux Pas Right: Cardinal

No faux pas is a matte hot pink with a warm yellow undertone. Cardinal is a burgundy red with a satin finish. Both are bold, vibrant colours.

Both lipsticks are £15.50 each.

Collection is available later on this month (April).

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Val Garland Tuesday Chat

If you missed last nights Tuesday chat then you are in for a treat! We spent some time with the amazing Val Garland. I think our excitement is quite evident in this video!
 Grab a cuppa and take a watch......

Monday, 13 April 2015

How to contour tutorial

Nic has been doing some fab back to basics tutorials and on Friday she created a guide to contouring to your face shape.
 Take a look below....

Friday, 10 April 2015

Jurlique Sun care

Having spent a lot of time in Australia we know first hand just how harsh the sun is there. Because of this we tend to think that whatever range of sun care that originates from down under is going to be pretty awesome stuff.
 It makes sense for an Australian brand to launch a sun care range and this May 1st Jurlique are launching their sun specialist range. Very kind of Jurlique to launch just before our Summer even though it's Autumn/Winter in the southern hemisphere!

The new Jurlique sun screen is only available in the SPF 40 high protection with a PA+++ rating (high protection against UVA aging rays) making it suitable for all the family.
 What I particularly like about this sun cream is that where most brands just focus on the very important job of sun protection, Jurlique also include ingredients which have great skin care benefits too.
 Jurlique always use home grown ingredients (they actually own a farm in Australia!)and for this sun protection they have used a blend of botanical ingredients including...

Black Elder-helps reduce skin redness
Chamomile-skin soothing
Calendula flower-comforts skin sensitivity
Licorice Root-Helps to fade discolouration and brighten
Riberry-Helps promote production of collagen and elastin
Shea Butter-Intense moisturisation

 It doesn't contain any parabens, artificial colours or formaldehyde.
Gentle enough to use on the face and body, even on a sensitive skin.

100ml is £27.00

 Jurlique sunless tanner is another new launch this May and is great for people who are a bit nervous of applying a full on fake tan all over. This is a gradual tanner which you apply each day as your regular body lotion. Each day it will gradually give you a subtle colour which builds over time. 
 The colour will never get too dark as it works on your skins natural melanin, making it an individual colour on everyone. If you are really fair skinned you won't look orange, just a few shades darker than your natural skin tone.

I would apply it each day but use an exfoliating body scrub about every three days to ensure the colour doesn't build up in dry skin areas or go patchy.
 Do make sure you wash your hands after each use (or use a mitt) because it does stain your fingers.
 It also doesn't have that horrid biscuity smelling scent that regular tan has.
 Colour will begin to gradually look darker after two to three hours and will be completely developed within six hours of application.
 A nice product to use throughout the Summer months or just for a week in advance for a special occasion.

What's inside?...
Again naturally derived ingredients which are native to Australia.

DHA-The tanning ingredient which is derived from sugar cane
Sweet Orange-natural tan accelerator
Safflower seed oil-moisturising 
Glycerin-Smoothes and prevents dehydration

This does not have sun protection in it so you will still need to apply an SPF before catching the rays.

150ml is £24.00

Both of these products are available from 1st May at


Thursday, 9 April 2015

Chanel complete correction CC Cream

As we all start to get excited for our Summer holiday we get asked a lot about which foundation is a good one to take away.
 It's still nice to have a little bit of coverage but something that will also protect our skin in the sun.
 The Chanel CC cream is not a foundation but it's one of the best CC creams we have come across for the amount of cover it gives.
 CC creams (if you're not familiar) address skin tone and help to correct any redness, uneven skin tone and pigmentation.
 If you are someone who suffers from any of these then you should be wearing a high SPF in the sunshine to protect and prevent further darkening of pigmentation. This particular CC cream has a mega dose of sun protection in the form of SPF50/PA ++++. What does this SPF rating mean? SPF 50 gives you fifty times your own skins protection against burning. The PA part of the sunscreen cover means the grade of protection against UVA which was established in Japan. The UVA rays are the ageing rays and the four+ indicates a very high level of UVA protection.
 It contains a peach complex which is unique to Chanel. This helps stimulate the skins defence barrier. Hyaluronic acid helps to moisturise the skin and give it a plumped, hydrated appearance. 
 Coverage wise this is really good. It goes on with quite a thick, creamy texture initially but blends out to a medium cover. It has a soft, pearly finish and makes the skin look radiant and fresh.
 It absorbs into the skin well and doesn't leave a greasy residue. 
The texture sits well on all skin types although if your skin is particularly oily it may be too radiant.
 The colour options are limited to four shades however the lightest shade
 The shades are Beige 10, 20, 30, 40. We have two of the shades..

 Overall a great product to wear all year round but particularly in the Summer months. Giving you an even tone and radiant complexion and particularly benefits those with pigmentation or sensitive skin.
 This product does not replace your regular sun cream. If sun bathing with just this product on you will quickly sweat it off. A professional sun cream is designed to be sweat proof and waterproof. You also need to apply a large quantity of suncream, more than people often realise. This would be a very expensive product to use as your sun protection. Available now online and from all Chanel counters at £44.00 for 30ml.


Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Louise Roe Tuesday Chat

Tuesday Chat's are back and we have kicked off with the amazing Louise Roe. Take a look at our chat below and see more from Louise on her blog at or follow Louise on Instagram @louiseroe

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Mama Mio Pregnancy products

There seems to be quite a baby boom at the moment amongst the people we know. Maybe it's the Fifty shades of grey effect or maybe we are all just at that age where we think it's time to finally grow up! I hope it's the latter!
 This is Stacey writing this blog and I am currently 17 weeks pregnant and counting. 
 I have never really experienced anything quite like pregnancy. I never knew that literally something changes in your body every single day and there are huge differences from one week to the next. 
 I always thought how my body looked during pregnancy would really bother me but in fact it really doesn't (I'm sure not everyone feels this way though).
 Worrying about stretchmarks and weight gain really is the last thing on my mind. I worry more if all I have wanted to eat today is a piece of toast and did the 'standing up to quick' pains mean I have damaged my baby! Although the nausea is most unpleasant I also welcome it in a weird way. I feel as though if I feel nausea then everything is ticking along as it should.
 Anyway I digress...
 I haven't really worried too much about stretch marks because I honestly believe they are mostly genetic however I do want to give my skin it's best opportunity to stretch with as much help as I can give it.

We recently had a meeting with Emma from SpaceNK and she was filling me in on what's hot in terms of caring for pregnancy skin.
 She said I absolutely had to try Mama mio products. 

 Emma told us how the Kardashians and Tamara Ecclestone are among Mama Mio's fans so I thought I better give it a go!

 I haven't tried all of the products in the range but here are some of my favourites so far..

The Tummy Rub Butter

This smells so delicious I just want to eat it (not in a weird craving way!) A 120g pot of cream which has a thick, rich whipped cream texture. Not so thick though that you are dragging the skin and rubbing for ages. It absorbs really easily. 
  It contains organic Coconut, Avocado, Sacha Inchi, Olive, Rosehip, Argan, Sweet Almond Oils and Shea Butter.
 My skin has been so itchy however I haven't had any itching since using this. It helps to soothe the skin whilst increasing skin elasticity. They recommend using this for four months after having your baby also to help skin bounce back to how it was.
 This is £23.50 and I have been using it from my hips to top of my ribs and all the way round to my back every morning. I can dress immediately and it doesn't leave a film on my skin.

The Tummy Rub Oil

So because I use the butter during the day I use this oil at bedtime.
 I have already been testing out other oils which have left my skin texture feeling nice however I found that they increased my skin itching. I felt like they sat on the surface of my skin and took forever to dry off which made my skin feel more itchy.
 This oil which has much the same ingredients as the butter but is packed with omega rich, organic oils.
 I keep it next to my bed and as i'm laying in bed (usually by 8pm!) I watch TV and massage it gently over my stomach and hips. It doesn't even make the sheets oily.
 This oil is also in 120g pump action bottle and is a little more expensive at £27.00.

Lucky Legs Leg Gel

At 17 weeks I think it's a bit early to suffer with swollen, tired legs but I have been using this gel on the odd occasion. 
Lightweight gel containing Menthol, Spearmint and zesty Lemon plus the moisturising benefits of  Lavender, Chamomile, Arnica and Murumuru Butter.
 This feels really refreshing, cooling and a little tingly. It would be lovely on tired legs and I will definitely be keeping this with me in the Summer months.
 The 100ml pump style bottle is £19.00

Mama Mio have lots of other products in their range so be sure to check them out at SpaceNK

SpaceNK do have global shipping so check out their site if you live outside of the UK.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Colour correcting and concealing tutorial

Did you catch our tutorial last Friday? It's all about colour theory and correcting your skin tone.
 Take a look here.....

Friday, 27 March 2015

Yankee Candle Bunny Cake

I know most of us just want chocolate at Easter but this new seasonal candle from Yankee Candle is a nice alternative, especially if you are healthy eating or just dislike chocolate!

Bunny Cake candle is only in the large 22oz glass jar and is £19.99.
 Coloured in a candyfloss pink this is scented with a warming sugary coconut, vanilla and citrus fragrance. Very sweet smelling as you may imagine but with the warming undertones of a baked cake, yummy.
 With around 150 hours burn time you can light it all over Easter and think of all those calories you saved yourself! 


Thursday, 26 March 2015

New L'Oreal Lipsticks

For it's 30th anniversary L'Oreal have launched a bunch of new shades in a rich mixture of satin and matte shades.

We particularly love the shade in 228 and 364. All the shades are bold and creamy and give a longlasting finish. These are all £6.99 each and available now.

To accompany these new shades L'Oreal have launched 9 new colour riche couture lip liners. We have 5 of the shades available. We love the snake skin effect on the pencils.

These pencils are quite hard and not very creamy but they do give you a precise line and last well. The lip liners are £3.99 each.

Another nice touch that L'Oreal have done to celebrate their 30th is to release lipsticks in honour of their celebrity ambassadors.

Seven totally wearable shades which are embossed with their icon's seen worn below

The collection exclusive lipsticks are also available now and are £6.99 each.

All of these products are available from the following locations..

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Suqqu Chiffon Collection

 Japaneese brand Suqqu have launched their typically Spring like collection in pastels and bronze washes of colour.

From Left: #25 Haruhinata, #19 Awafujisukashi, #18 Sakuraori

The three limited edition quads (available now) contain 4 luxurious powdered, pigmented shades.
 The powders in this collection are silicone coated to help blend over textured skin such as fine lines and are infused with amino acid which have skin caring benefits.

Anyone who isn't Japanese will most likely struggle to pronounce the titles of these palettes but luckily they are also numbered!

Number 25-Haruhinata palette all have a shimmer finish and are a mix of bright gold highlighter, apricot, plum/grey and a blue based baby pink. The lighter shades do take a lot of building up to get a good wash of colour.

Number 19-Awafujisukashi contains a pearl finish highlighter which gives a two tone finish of pink and silver, lavender, rich taupe and delicate copper.

 Number 18 Sakuraori has a similar pearl highlighter, warm toned pink, golden bronze and rich rusty copper.

 Zero drop down from these and all the colours weirdly work together. Great for people who don't like strong pigments but favour sheer washes. Because of the silicone pigments these sit well on a more mature skin.

The palettes are not cheap though..£45.00 each and available from

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Maybelline Dream Flawless Nude Foundation

This foundation launched in January but we have only just got our hands on it. 
 Firstly we love the bottle. A manageable size for your makeup bag at 20ml and very attractive ombré bottle.

 We weren't as keen on the applicator wand. It's a teardrop shaped plastic wand which looks nice but is a little scratchy on the skin. You have to use the side of the teardrop to apply the product but because it isn't very big you have to re-dip frequently.

 The actual foundation is a light weight liquid which reminds us of the Armani Maestro foundation
 It feels sheer on the skin, is instantly absorbed and gives a beautiful velvet matte, almost a powder finish.
 Evens out the skin well and has a soft focus effect. Works well on an oily or combination skin which prefers a lightweight cover. A slightly dryer skin may not find this moisturising enough.

Lasts well on the skin and available in 7 shades, all of which would suit a light through to a medium skin tone, nothing much for a deeper skin tone here i'm afraid and the shades we have seen are all yellow based.

 We have three of the shades......


Available now at £8.99 each (although it's on offer at the moment for £5.99 from Boots )

Monday, 23 March 2015

YSL Touche Éclat Blur Perfector

We were expecting this product to launch on the 1st April but it seems it's already hitting the shelves as so many of you have asked us to review it because you have seen it in stores already.

What is it?..
It is a beautiful baby pink and gold compact containing a soft, silicone feeling, translucent balm.
 The purpose of the balm is to blur out imperfections such as pores and give the skin a smoother appearance.
 It's basically like using an Instagram filter on your face but for everyday life!
 The balm is a mixture of solid oil and silicone which evaporate on contact with the skin to give a powdered, silky texture.
 It's targeted at people who want to touch up their skin throughout the day to ensure it has a natural matte finish with a smooth appearance. Basically it's for people who are bored of using a powder but still want the matte finish.

 The compact comes with a small velour sponge for application.
 YSL claim it can be worn on it's own on a makeup free day or on top of foundation as a touch up product.

 What do we think?..
 It feels beautiful to the touch. Soft balmy and instantly absorbed. Doesn't feel greasy as you may expect.
 I tested this on my skin with no foundation on first of all. It felt gorgeous, softened the appearance of pores and gave my skin an even matte veil. Great if you are having a no-makeup day but just want to smooth the skins surface. It doesn't translate as pink on the skin whatsoever.
 I then tested on my skin with a foundation underneath. I applied using the sponge at lunchtime to touch up. I found that even with a gentle patting motion of the sponge it did disturb my makeup underneath a little.
 I felt as though after patting it on I had to just buff a little with a brush to make sure my foundation or concealer was blended back in. I much preferred to apply it using my fingers, softly patting the balm into the areas which I required smoothing and mattifying. The warmth of my fingers also helped to blend the product into my skin.
 It does soften the appearance of the skin and also smoothes the appearance of pores. It performs better on a combination or oily skin (obviously as it's mattifying). On a dry skin it seemed to make the foundation adhere to the dry patches.
 It does make your skin feel like absolute silk though.
£31.50 and available now in stores and online.

Friday, 20 March 2015

NARS All day luminous weightless foundation

We have been waiting to get our hands on this new foundation for a couple of months and finally we have it! Whoopee

 What do NARS say about this foundation?....

Full, natural-looking coverage with unexpectedly weightless, 16-hour wear. Highly pigmented and perfectly balanced, this breakthrough formula builds and blends effortlessly with just one drop.

 What do we think?....

Definitely a full cover, much fuller than the NARS Sheer glow if you have ever used that. You literally need the tiniest amount of this foundation to give a good cover. We recommend to apply small amounts and lightly build it up ensuring you blend well in between layers.
 It does feel weightless on the skin but build this up too much and you are in danger of a caked finish so go easy with the application.
 What we loved about this foundation is the flawless even tone it gives your skin. If you have redness or pigmentation then this is great for evening the skin tone. 
 It contains gold pigments which work to give the luminous finish and green pigments to counteract skin redness. These added pigments really do work. I have a few blotchy red patches from old scarring and when applied with a dense foundation brush I was able to cover well without using a separate concealer.

We tested on a dry skin and a combination skin to get a fair review.

 Dry Skin..

 Nic tried this in a video today and wasn't a huge fan. She liked that it gave a good cover however she felt it clung to her dry areas and after a few hours wear was a little patchy in places. She didn't feel that it was moisturising enough for her and didn't feel that the finish was very luminous. It was almost like her natural dryness absorbed any luminosity like a black hole absorbs light!

Oily Skin..

I tested this (Stacey) and I have an oily T-zone with normal cheeks. I normally go for a sheer to medium cover foundation but found when applied sparingly I could create more of a medium cover that wasn't too heavy for me. It's true that it feels weightless, it doesn't feel restrictive and absorbsed really quickly. It gave my skin a soft silk sheen which looked natural. Not as radiant as Sheer glow.
 I have a few frown lines and found it settled slightly into these. To avoid this either use a good primer or avoid applying it too heavy in these areas. Less is more when it comes to skin texture.
 Worked well on redness but if you have blemish prone skin it will cling slightly to the dry areas of skin around the blemish.
 Didn't pool in my oily areas and didn't move or feel greasy after wearing all day.

 There are 20 shades in this range and thankfully the colours are exactly the same as the colours for NARS Sheer glow. There is one extra colour in this range though which is a very deep shade called Benares.
 If you normally wear Sheer glow then you will find the same shade will work in All day luminous too.

Our overall thoughts are that it will work better for someone who is used to Double Wear or Skin Base coverage and who's skin is more on the combination/oily side. It's not very forgiving on skin texture so if you have deep lines or visible pores then it tends to enhance these rather than reduce them.

No SPF and photographs nicely.

This is £32.00 for a 30ml glass bottle and has a pump to distribute the product. I wish NARS didn't have the rubber lid though, it gets covered and stained instantly making the bottle look grubby.

Available from SpaceNK