Thursday, 15 May 2014

Get a Fresh Faced Look with Clinique

Ever since doing the Cheek Pop review, I've become a massive fan of Clinique products, and couldn't wait for the opportunity to do another one. Clinique were kind enough to send me three samples for a fresh faced 'awake' look which I was so excited to try out.

 Natural make-up looks are perfect for Summer. No one wants a cake face in boiling hot weather. There's nothing worse than your make-up slipping half-way down your face. 

Now I have quite an extensive make-up routine, so when I realised I had to create a fresh-faced natural look with just these three products, I wasn't sure if it would work. 

The first of the products was the SuperPrimer which colour corrects dullness in deeper skins. It actually took me a while to get used to this, because it's texture is very different to other primers that I've used. It's nowhere near as wet, and dries instantly once upon the skin, whereas others leave a dewy, moisturised feel.  It's also tan in colour, which surprised me. But the more I used it, the more I realised that both the texture and colour work to benefit your skin and the finished look. The dryness creates the perfect matte base for you to apply foundation too, so that it doesn't cling to any particular area, whilst the tan colour helps to gently even out your skin tone, whilst adding just a slight bit of colour to your face.

I have quite dry skin, and when my skin was at its worst, I found this primer a little too dry, but to fix this I used a thick moisturiser, left it to dry thoroughly, and then applied the primer. Problem Solved.

Next is the Airbrush Concealer. I fell in love with this instantly. So easy to use, and with the primer it creates brilliant coverage with no need for added foundation. It's so light on the skin, and reflects light, which hides any dark areas (this baby is absolute magic for dark circles under the eyes). It also works as a highlighter, particularly in the corner of the eye and just below the eyebrow.  I now take this absolutely everywhere with me. It's perfect for when you want a quick touch up, without having to heave out the foundations and brushes etc.
My only complaint would be that you can't see how much you've used, so you can't see when it's running out, and considering how much I love it, that's something I'm going to need to know.

With your skin sorted, the last thing to focus on is your eyes. No matter how fresh your face looks, if your eyes look tired it will ruin the whole look. This is where this bad boy steps in. Clinique's High Impact Mascara adds length and volume to an extent where it opens up your eyes, creating a wide-eyed effect, whilst at the same time separating them to make your lashes look as natural as possible. Nobody likes a clumpy mascara. 

So here's the complete look:

All in all, I am so happy with these products. It's actually changed my make-up routine completely, because in testing these product I've become so used to a light layer of make-up that I don't want to go back. The days are getting hotter, and we're all going to be looking for an answer to our melting make-up problems. I think Clinique have it! 

Steph x x x


Thursday, 10 April 2014

New Hair - Dip Dye How-To

So I mentioned in my last post that I'd had a complete hair makeover, which was my reason for buying the Remington Pearl Pro Curl. If you've read my About Me page, you'll also remember my mentioning of my lovely friend and hairdressing genius Natalie. Now we met back in 2008, working at a local hair salon together. To this day, she is one of my closest friends, and one of the most talented hairdressers I've ever met. She has been doing my hair for years now, and I don't think I'd trust any one else with it.

So when I decided I wanted a bit of a change, I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to introduce you to her, and show you an example of some of the posts we'll be doing together in the future. So without further ado, here is Nat:

 and here is my snazzy new do, literally minutes after it was done.:


I've been a redhead for almost four years now and with all these amazing pastel shades popping up, I was envious of the new lease of life everyone's hair seemed to be getting. Now I've never bleached my hair all over before, and as much as I want a pastel shade, I'm not ready to commit to bleaching my hair all over, simply because of how much colour i'd have to strip off, and I'll admit it now, I'm not very good at regular trims and overall hair maintenance, so I wasn't sure my hair could take it.

Instead, I opted for a firey dip-dye, to test the bleachy water, and I couldn't be happier. I almost squealed the other day when someone told me it looked like my hair was on fire. Now there's no way I would have attempted this by myself, but I am a massive scaredy cat when it comes to my hair. I'm extremely over-protective of it. But if you do decide to do something like this yourself, I've provided below a step-by-step how-to of everything Natalie did to get this look, as well as some tips and advice.

What you'll need
Sectioning clips | Mixing Bowl | Tinting Brush | An old towel/hairdressing cloak | Peroxide  and Bleach Powder (see image below for reference | Tin Foil | Gloves

1) In a tint bowl, mix peroxide (We used volume 40 to get through all the layers of red dye) and bleach powder half and half, until both components are combined.
2) Section hair into 4 pieces: two at the front, two at the back like so.

 3)Wearing gloves and using the tint brush, apply bleach to one of the front sections, applying a very thick amount to the ends. Using your hands, WITH GLOVES ON, massage the bleach into the ends to make sure it covers all the hairs, and then spread the bleach upwards to the mid-lengths, or the point where you want the dip-dye to start. There should be a lot more bleach on the ends than towards the top. The decrease in bleach the higher you go ensures the gradient effect. Repeat this on the other three sections.  Leave for 45 minutes.
4)For faster results, wrap  the bleached sections  in tin foil. 
5)Rinse off with shampoo and dry.
6)Reapply a fresh mixture of bleach (same measurements) to the very ends to slightly lighten them, about an inch or so up. Leave for about 15 minutes and again wrap in tin foil.
7)Rinse, condition and style.
   - For any sort of dip-dye, I feel the best way to showcase the gradient is to curl the hair, like the pictures         below,  hence why I purchased the Remington Pearl Pro Curl

As I mentioned in my March Haul post, I did a lot of research before buying this product, because I've never used one before, and I don't want to do any damage to my hair. So for my first try, just to be safe, Nat showed me the best way to use them, as well as some extra advice and tips on how to make the curls last, which we're going to share with you too. 


1) Section into four pieces, like you did for the dip-dye : two at the front, two at the back
2) On a section of your choice, take a thin slice of hair from the very bottom. Clip the rest of the section              away.
3) There are two ways to curl your hair, depending on what style curl you want. Putting the wand on top of the hair with hair going under it creates a curl with more of flick out, however this doesn't create volume.
Putting the wand under the hair with the hair going over it creates volume and lift, especially at the top of the head.  Pick one of these techniques, and use it on the first thin slice of hair. Repeat this all the way to the top of your first section. Then repeat for the remaining three sections.
TOP TIP: If like me you have thick hair, which is prone to dropping, spray each slice of hair with hair spray before you curl it, and spray it once more just after. (I recommend Tresemme Salon Finish Extra Hold )
Also, thick hair is quite heavy, which makes it quite hard to create volume. For a helping hand, use a texturing or volume spray. We used Label M's Texturising Volume Spray.
4) Give all your hair a quick once over with the hair spray again if you find your curls are dropping.  Tip your hair upside down and give a light spray with the texturising spray if needed.
5) Can neaten curls with a flat bristle brush. This type won't brush out the curls.

So here is the finished look : D Just for reference, as a base I use Loreal Feria Pure Scarlet Power.
It's taking me a while to get used to the full fringe, but I'm so in love with the dip-dye. I can't thank Natalie enough.

If there's anyone out there from the Bedfordshire area who's interested in contacting Natalie about having your hair done, or some of her work, contact Elegance Salon by TLC, Brickhill, Bedford, or check out their website at