Saturday, 31 December 2011

Nic's Hen Party Hand Luggage

We are all getting very excited because it is just a few weeks until we all jet off to Amsterdam for Nic's Hen Party (14 of us).  It got me thinking about products to pack to suit airline regulations for hand luggage.

For a quick airport exit we have decided to only take hand luggage. Which means minimal product to stay within the weight restrictions and also the rules for UK flights require that only 100ml liquid per product can be carried onto the aircraft.

 MAC do some great little travel skin care products called MAC Sized to go.
 These can be purchased individually and include cleansers and moisturisers to suit your skin type all within the 100ml rule for liquids.
I will be taking the Demi wipes, Oil Control Lotion and I just love the mini Fix+ which is great to refresh your skin during flights.
There is also the cutest little weeny Strobe cream which is a great radiance booster to the skin.
Radiance is definitely something my skin will be needing after a weekend of mayhem in Amsterdam!

Any other liquids,creams or pastes that are in large containers can be decanted into smaller travel bottles. Boots and Superdrug do some good ones as do Muji (my personal favorite).


I've also found some great mini body cream, shower gels and roll on deodorants from Boots. All packed into a little bag in case of spillages.
 I plan on decanting my own shampoo and conditioner into travel bottles but for those of you lucky enough to get away without having to wash your hair daily there are the mini Batiste dry shampoo sprays.
Not forgetting our beloved Travalo perfume atomizers which the Pixiwoo team always have in our handbags.
They are easy to fill up from any of your favourite fragrances and also provide hours of entertainment. 'Guess the fragrance' being a very popular game amongst us.

So excited, Stay tuned on Twitter and Facebook for embarrassing photos live and direct from Amsterdam.


Friday, 30 December 2011

Dr Bragi Age Management Moisturiser

This is a fantastic moisturiser that I have been trying out for about 3 weeks and I am extremely pleased with how effective it has been. 
Dr. Jon Bragi created the line after his scientific findings and work based upon discovering new marine enzymes (in water) that had strong healing and therapeutic properties. He then decided to look at the enzyme technologies cosmetic potential and turned this potential into the creation of the unique Dr. Bragi skincare range. 

This is the only product I have tried from the range but it is brilliant at keeping my dry skin extremely healthy and constantly hydrated. After a few days of using it day and night, my skin looked much fresher and luminous and very soft to touch. Dr. Bragi recommends leaving it to work on the skin for around 15 minutes before putting any make-up on to the skin for it to reach its full potential. A little goes a long way with this product also and one pump is more than sufficient to fully cover the face and neck area. 

I love the innovative formula of this moisturiser, instead of a cream, it comes in a colourless gel-like consistency. It blends in easily without leaving residue and my skin feels fresh and breathable immediately afterwards. It is also completely oil free. 
The enzymes are also said to aid the cleansing and exfoliating process, so it is like having a variety of products combined into one compact bottle.
All this wonderfulness does however come with quite a hefty price tag, at £120 it is extremely high end as far as moisturisers go. Perhaps a rather huge investment, but a good one if you ask me. 

Thursday, 29 December 2011

MUA Eyeshadow Palettes

MUA is an incredibly affordable makeup brand with many of their individual products retailing at £1! 
I've been using two of the eyeshadow palettes from the range and not only are they incredible value, but they are surprisingly fantastic. Both palettes contain 12 versatile shadows for creating an abundance of looks, one of the palettes is called ‘Dusk Til Dawn’ which is a collection of warm and smoky shimmering shadows perfect for creating evening looks, and the other is ‘Pop Tastic’ which is full of bright and daring shades to create unique and colourful looks. Both palettes have such a great range of colours available at such a good price point, making each shadow very affordable.

MUA 'Pop Tastic' Palette

The packaging is really simple but for products as affordable as these, it is what’s on the inside that counts! 
The formulation of the shadows is excellent, as you can see from the pictures it has a finely milled texture therefore the colour pay off is great and the intensity of the shades remains the same as it appears in its packaging. All of the shadows have a shimmer finish which is a finish and in the Dusk Til Dawn palette, several of the shades are shot through with a really fine glitter, great for creating eye-catching party looks. The appearance of the glitter in the palette corresponds perfectly on to the eyelid and stays there for the wearing duration.

Due to their soft texture, the shadows are good to blend and work with, however I did find that they create quite a lot of fallout so watch out for that. The staying power is great, with little creasing or movement. During the festive season, I’ve been using colours from the Dusk Til Dawn palette but the Pop Tastic palette will be great for the gloomy months approaching!

MUA 'Dusk Til Dawn' Palette

At £4.50 each they are definitely worth trying out, and even if you think you will only wear a few of the colours in the palette, I am sure there will be a couple of colours in there for everyone, and at that selling price it is hard to resist! You can find these and the whole MUA range at Superdrug

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Kiehl's Ultimate Strength Hand Salve

After a relatively mild start to December here in the U.K, winter has now arrived and there is a definite icy cold bite in the air. The coldness can mean a slight change to skin care to keep skin hydrated and healthy. My hands often suffer in the winter months and become chapped and dry in the cold air therefore I constantly need to keep my hands nourished and soft. The award-winning Kiehl’s hand salve works perfectly for me. It is completely no nonsense, and not marketed as a ‘luxury’ hand cream and instead it prides itself on being an ‘ultimate strength’ salve that fights the driest and toughest of hands and provides them with a really intense moisturising process, directly targeting and then combating the problem of dry hands with no other fuss about it. It has a really simple, natural scent. It also leaves no residue and doesn’t feel at all slippery, and it absorbs in seconds. It simultaneously restores the hands back to health, leaving them soothed and moisturised, as well as being a protector from dryness and exposure to the harshest of elements in the future.

I love how simple but how effective it is, I keep it in my hand bag all the time and apply it liberally throughout the day or whenever my hands need a moisture hit. The formula of the salve actually encourages the hands to absorb moisture from the air, instead of moisture being lost from the hands. It contains avocado, eucalyptus and sesame seed botanical oils to maintain hands health, as well as a natural wax that comes from olive oil.

This is a product that is already widely recognised, but I thought I would share it with you as one of my winter ‘must-haves’. Is this anyone else’s holy grail of hand cream/salves?

The Kiehl’s Ultimate Strength Hand Salve is available in a variety of sizes and is widely available. 

Friday, 23 December 2011

Creative Eyelashes for New Year

With the party season in full swing here are a selection of our favourite beautiful and wild false eyelashes, from MAC, Shu Uemura, Illamasqua and up and coming brand Shimmer Twins. 

Shu Uemura 'Lashes in Nature' series. (No longer available, but they are amazing!)

Partial Silver Lower Eyelashes (£18)

Twisted Space Lashes (£27)

A personal favourite - Tribal Patch Lashes 

Cosmic Chains Lashes (£27)

MAC Gareth Pugh 'Flight Lash' Lashes (£18)

Illamasqua Diamante False Eyelashes (£25)

All lashes available in store and online.

Finally, inspiring lash designs from Shimmer Twins, which have been featured on the cover of i-D magazine :


Shimmer Twin Lashes are available from Urban Outfitters and ASOS go check them out! We love them.  See them on ASOS here (most are about £15).

Thursday, 22 December 2011

EYE ROCK Designer Eye Fashion

I've just got these fantastic products from ASOS. 'Eye Rock' are a unique concept of crystal 'eye tattoos' launched by the same company that make the excellent 'Nail Rock' nail wraps. The tattoo's are made with Swarvoski elements to add extra shine and glitter.

There is a trick to applying these, they absolutely must be applied to clean dry skin and unfortunately cannot be applied on top of any make-up at all. Once your skin is clean and ready to go they are incredibly easy to put on,  remove the white backing sheet carefully, ensuring that all the crystals remain on the clear sheet and then press the Eye Rock on to the skin and hold it firmly in place for a good few seconds to ensure that the adhesive (dermatologically approved) has warmed up so it can stick in place on to the skin. After this, gently remove the clear sheet ensuring every crystal is stuck in place then you're good to go! They are great for a glamorous party look or a dress-up occasion, and although you can't specifically re-use them, you could keep the crystals and then apply them with lash glue to create a look of your own. 

The two styles here are from a total of six styles and colours you can choose from and they cost £22. See the full range on their website  

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Merry Christmas...

and thank you for all of your support this year. We appreciate you more than you will ever know.
Sam & Nic x


Tuesday, 20 December 2011

SLEEK 'The Berry Collection' - Christmas Edition

For the festive season Sleek have released a limited edition three-piece collection of Christmassy and wintery berry colours all wrapped up in a shiny red package. Each item is also labelled in shimmery red  colours giving them a unique and festive touch. The set has a lipstick, blush and kohl liner all of which are a rich and deep berry colour, perfect for creating a warm and sophisticated evening look or for a healthy colour pop in the cold weather day or night! 

I love the matte black packaging with red detail and I like the bulkiness of the products, it makes them easier to use and to apply with. The kohl in particular is really chunky so you have the option of applying thick streaks of colour or easy application all over the lid to create a base for shadow or it looks equally as great on its own. Like with all Sleek products that we've written about or used in videos, the quality against the price point is brilliant, all three of these products are really long wearing and stay in place all day and are fantastically pigmented. This set is £10 and for having three really essential and effective products in it, makes it incredibly affordable.

The Mossberry eyeliner is, as you can see from above on the left, a deep purple currant colour that works brilliantly for creating a soft and rich smoky eye, the formula of the kohl is really soft which makes it great for blending and working with. The lipstick is a True Colour lipstick called cranberry which has more of a red tone to it and I have been pairing it with gold eyeshadow for a really Christmassy look, it also looks great gently pressed into the lips for a subtle but effective stroke of colour. The lipstick is sold as a matte shade but has a hint of gloss to it, which keeps the lips looking hydrated and nourished. The blusher called Fenberry is quite a dark peachy-red colour so a little goes a long way with this, for a fairer skin like mine only a very small amount is needed for ample and healthy looking rosey cheeks. Check the set out and get while you can at Sleek's website here.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Bourjois Volume Glamour Max Mascara

I always think it's quite hard to find a waterproof mascara that masters both being actually waterproof and effective in terms of how it looks on the lashes, but this one manages to do both. I was pleasantly surprised at the results of this mascara, both for the way that it looked and how it didn't budge when I came into contact with water. I really like the finish of the mascara, it's not as dramatic as other mascaras that I may use but it effectively separates out lashes and coats them well to give lots of definition and volume that lasts all day. 

Here are the lashes without mascara...

And here they are after one coat...

The mascara is lengthening and provides strong definition at the base of the lashes. I tested it by rinsing my face with water and the mascara stayed in place, it was only when the temperature of the water increased that it started to smudge. It is quick to apply and after one coat you achieve great results and I didn't find it fussy or difficult to apply accurately, perhaps this is down to the shape of the wand - it's not too big and it doesn't cling to lots of product, it has a soft rounded shape making it easy to coat lashes. 

Like with all Bourjois products, I think this mascara is great value for the quality of the product (£9.49), and it totally does what it says it is going to do - maximising lashes and giving them glamourous appeal whilst also being effectively waterproof.

Mascara reviewed by Kate Gowing. Thanks Kate. x

Friday, 16 December 2011

PRTTY PEAUSHUN skin tight body lotion

I am a huge fan of these body lotions created by make-up artist Bethany Karlyn which are designed to make you 'look good in your birthday suit'! They give the most gorgeous finish to the skin and really make the skin glow and give it luminosity. What is fantastic about these is they are available with a colour tint in them, as well as a colourless one too. The lotions with the tint in them are absolutely fantastic for going out or for when you are baring flesh in general as they give the skin coverage,as well as evening out skin tone and they also can reduce the appearance of bruises, redness etc. Instantly your skin looks flawless and supple. It also claims to give a more slender appearance. Bonus. I've been using the light shade and popping it all over my legs before going out to give them a healthy glow and a bit more of an even and richer colour, the lotions also contain light reflecting particles to give the skin that extra luminosity.
From a make-up artists point of view these photograph amazingly and make an excellent addition to MAC Face & Body in your kit.

They are so easy just to throw on and the coloured ones are not at all streaky or obvious looking, and blend into the skin with ease. They are available in plain, light, medium, dark and deep shades so there is a good selection to choose from. The lotion itself has firming and tightening properties to keep skin looking healthy and enhances its appearance, as well as keeping the skin well moisturised and giving it long lasting smoothness. It's formula is fragrance free and is made from 92% natural raw ingredients such as avocado butter, green tea extract and grapefruit wax - all good for you!

The packaging is also super cool with its original shape and it's great for getting every last bit of product out. It is also designed to be eco-friendly because it is incredibly lightweight and is 'anti-packaging' - taking up minimal space. Their list of regular users boasts huge celebrity names and the product is in big demand. It is a U.S based brand but available online for those of us outside the U.S.

One of my top products of the moment and is definitely one of my going out must haves!

Available from Guru - £39.00 236ml

Monday, 12 December 2011

Different techniques for different eye shapes.

 Using Angelina Jolie as an example here are my tips for round eyes.


Using Megan Fox as an example here are my tips for narrow or smaller eyes.


Using Cat Deeley as an example here are my tips for hooded eyes or monolids


Sunday, 11 December 2011

CHANEL Blush Horizon de Chanel & Rouge Coco Baume (Spring 2012)

I know it's not even Christmas yet and Spring seems a long way off but I was lucky enough to sample some of the Chanel Spring 2012 collection that will hit stores in the new year. I have fallen in love with duo that came in the gorgeous white case pictured above. 

In the case is the beautiful peachy pink 'Blush Horizon de Chanel' and a 'Rouge Coco Baume' both of which are beautiful products and perfect for a glowing and dewy Spring look. 

The blusher is just so beautiful to look at, of course coming encased in a velvet wallet and packaged in the classic Chanel way. I love the colorful stripes going across the product, and the Chanel label embossed into the powder - it just makes for such a timeless and elegant product. The pay off of the blush is simply gorgeous (see below) and it just blends into a shimmering and glowing dusky peach pink. The formula is finely milled so it feels so silky upon application and just naturally blends into the cheek leaving a healthy and radiant finish. This product was used on the catwalk for the S/S12 show and the models looked so effortlessly and naturally beautiful. A product perfect for the Spring months. 

The balm also comes in equally beautiful packaging, the height of sophistication for a lip balm that is for sure! This for me was an eagerly anticipated product, as I had heard about it previously and wanted to see how it faired against the amazing Rouge Coco Shine formulation, and I was not at all disappointed. The balm benefits from restorative properties and it really helps to keep lips hydrated and moisturised. I love that it has a thick formula but doesn't leave any residue and doesn't feel sticky. It keeps lips soft and supple.

These two wonderful Spring time products are part of Chanel's full Spring collection 'Les Harmonies de Printemps' and are due for release early next year. Watch this space.........

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Beautannia Bath and Body Range

Space NK founder Nicky Kinnaird has recently launched a beautiful range of bath body products wonderfully named 'Beautannia', designed to celebrate all things British and to evoke the senses one can associate with Britain. The collection includes body lotions, candles, oils, bubble bath and so on and is split into three different scent groups - Bloomsbury, Brideshead and Balfour. 

Bloomsbury's scent is inspired by London's creativity and diversity and contains Pimento, Orange and Neroli to create it's unique and intimate scent. Brideshead is the most girly of the three and captures the floral essence of England, with particular reference to the gardens of a country manor. This is very feminine and fresh and contains bluebells, honeysuckle, plum and peach which makes for a gorgeous combination. The one I have been using is Balfour, which I think is a great unisex scent, this one is inspired by the Scottish Highlands and is very refreshing yet rich and has a complex sophisticated structure, it include fern, birch leaf and vetiver which I love to encapsulate the fresh and green scent of the outdoors.

The smell of these products are amazing and the scent lasts on the skin all day, they are the kind of scents that when you first smell them you don't want to stop! I've been using these two products non-stop - the gel in the bath to create an ultra luxurious bubble bath, leaving the skin feeling very fresh and supple followed by the body loton which is really nourishing and leaves the skin extremely soft and silky to touch. I also think the packaging of these products is so attractive, sophisticated and timeless, I love the classic floral boxes that the products come in and then the products inside are simple yet unique, with the British Beautannia logo placed on them, they are a real cut above the rest for any dressing table or bathroom. 

If you are passing a Space NK then definitely go in and check these products out, they are my favourite bath and body products at the moment. Prices range from £15 for the soaps to £42 for the oils and creams. You can see all the products on Space NK's website here and also the 'Beautannia Bulletin' - a mock newspaper about the products and their creator. 


Friday, 9 December 2011

Xen-Tan @ The Hoste Arms, Burnham Market, Norfolk

Winter has well and truly kicked in here in the UK and we have all lost any remnants of our summer tans.
 Christmas party season has begun and even though we will mostly be wearing thick opaque tights with our party dresses it's still nice to have a little colour to the skin.
 This week Sam, Nic and myself (Stacey) went to The Hoste Arms Beauty and Wellness Spa in the beautiful town of Burnham Market, Norfolk to experience a Xen-Tan treatment.

The Hoste Arms is a 17th Century Coaching Inn which not only offers a fantastic menu within their 5 different restaurants but also caters for all your accommodation needs within its 35 bedroom hotel.

We visited their new Spa to experience the treatments they offer. Nic and Sam opted for the Xen-Tan spray on method and I had the Xen-Tan massage application method.

The Spa is a den of tranquility and has a very relaxing calm atmosphere. Until we arrived making lots of noise!

We Particularily liked the wallpaper, light fittings and garden.

Xen-Tan are and American brand that created their products especially for people who wanted an easy to use tan that provided a subtle natural tan whilst giving great moisturisation and smelling delicious!
They provide the tan in many formulas to suit your needs including lotions,mousses and sprays.

My treatment was carried out by a lovely therapist called Claire.
She explained to me the treatment process and began applying the tan onto the back of my legs,back and back of arms using a Xen-Tan mitt.
The mitts are a total 'must' to prevent the tell tale sign of tan application on your own hands when applying to yourself.
Often fake tans have that horrible biscuity smell however I was pleasantly suprised with the smell of this tan. It smells of marzipan or almonds.
The tan is safe to use on the face also but you need to be cautious around the hairline and brows as the colour grips onto the fine hair around your hairline.
As the tan is tinted when you apply it you can clearly see where you are going and any spaces you have missed. Claire mixed a Xen-Tan moisturiser with the tan to apply to areas where the skin is slightly more dry, like the elbows and heels of the feet.
  The treatment took around 40 minutes to complete and I was able to dress immediately afterwards. Claire explained to keep the tan on for a minimum of 3 hours for a gentle tan or for the maximum depth of colour leave for 8 hours and then shower off.

Don't be alarmed at how dark you initially look. Sam and Nic found it very amusing how orange/brown I looked and proceeded to make me walk around the shops of this up market little town looking like the village idiot!

Please feel free to all laugh at my picture pre-shower!

I kept the tan on for the 8 hours and then showered it off.
My skin felt slightly dry afterwards which is pretty normal for my skin, but the colour was really nice.
It was quite a subtle colour, not as dark as I have achieved with other brands, however for those of you who prefer a gentle tan rather than the full on bronzed goddess look then this tan will be great for you. It definately looks more of a realistic tan colour for this time of year and I did choose the medium colour rather than the dark.
The tan will gradually fade after 10 days. I'm currently on day 4 and my skin just looks gently sun kissed. There are no signs of patching yet however my therapist recommended to exfoliating the skin to keep it patch free.

Here is an after picture so you can see the subtle results.

Hi guys,
Sam here, Just hijacking Stacey's post to let you know my experiences with the spray tan.
It was quick and easy and involved a shower cap and paper knickers... so pretty much as glamorous as it gets.  Oh... did I mention Scones!

Back to the tan, we stood in a booth, got sprayed, got dressed and left in time for lunch (forgetting my underwear).
The spray tan smells of chocolate so it isn't too painful to leave on for any length of time.
Most importantly and surprisingly, this tan did not streak or leave marks where I had put my tight jeans and bra on immediately after application. I still cannot quite believe that.
4 days on and I still have a nice golden glow.
I would do this more often if I had time and if Xen-Tan was offered in salons closer to me. The Xen-tan finish is far superior in colour and finish than the spray tans I have experienced in the past (Sienna).

Below is a little video run down of our day.
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