Monday, 28 April 2014

Pixi Eyeshadow Palette in Buff Blizzard

I have long thought the packaging and colours available within the products at Pixi look so incredibly pretty.  Incase you haven't heard of Pixi, they are a brand specialising in makeup and skincare founded by Swedish born Petra Strand. Their mission statement is clear "We want to make women look like themselves, only better".
Recently, Pixi kindly sent me this beautiful eyeshadow palette after an order I made of their infamous glow tonic was delayed by a few weeks. Coincidentally, they happened to send me a product I had been wanting ever since I first saw it on their website before Christmas... their Icy Eye Palette in Buff Blizzard.

I have been using this palette almost on a daily basis since I got it, including to my visit to YouTube in London. What I like about the range of colours, is they are very much everyday yet can be played up or down depending on how you feel. Brown is also notoriously less harsh than black, so acts as a great way to define the eyes without it making them look smaller or being too much for everyday. There is also a great white colour for highlighting the inner corners of the eye and brow brown. Overall, the shades work great in combination with each other and also look polished when black mascara is applied to define the lashes.

As for the pigment quality, I find they do give good pay off. I first like to apply a neutral toned base from my sleek storm palette, as I find that like with most eyeshadows, sandwiching products works best. As they are pressed you can also really pack the product on, yet because the tones are fairly neutral you don't end up overdoing things. 

I am also impressed that they don't crease as easily as other "lower end" eyeshadows. When you think about it, as this palette is £12 that means each shadow is technically £2... where as with higher end you are looking at a minimum of £10 per shadow colour. Honestly, the Pixi shadows are of really good quality and last well throughout the day, and best of all are easy to blend. 

Just a heads up that the range of Pixi eyeshadows seems to chop and change quite often and I've noticed they don't sell this particular palette on the website anymore, although other vendors seem to sell it. However, they do very similar palettes and are always bringing out new ones. 

Going on from the experience I've had with the Buff Blizzard palette, I'm inclined to try more eyeshadows from Pixi. Oh, and in terms of this blog they do work very easy against my very pale skin! 


Sunday, 27 April 2014

White Glo Coffee and Tea Drinker's Formula

Today I bring you a slightly different kind of beauty item... yes as you might have guessed it's toothpaste! In the last few years the teeth whitening phenomenon has gone a little crazy, with many of us now opting to get our nashers professionally whitened or use strips and other home whitening kits. Whitening toothpastes are becoming ever popular, however you may have noticed there are so many to choose from that it can seem a little overwhelming. 

For my New Years resolution, I gave up tea and coffee completely. Whilst this has prevented my teeth from further discolouration, I still wanted to ease up some of the damage my 4-6 cups of tea a day for nearly 2 decades had done to my teeth. Although my teeth weren't super yellow, they were bad enough that it bothered me, y'know?

Before I begin, It should be noted that products that bleach the teeth will whiten the tooth enamel deep down, and whitening toothpastes/mouthwashes etc will only remove surface stains.

I have on occasion used Crest Whitestrips, however these don't exactly live up to the claims and also the results fade within a few months. In addition to this, you can only use a batch of Whitestips for a maximum of twice a year. Hence, whitening toothpaste is the much safer and convenient way to go for everyday whitening. It's also a more viable alternative for those who have sensitive teeth and aren't a great candidate for bleaching.

So it's White Glo to the rescue! White Glo are a brand not many people have heard of. They don't advertise on TV with celebrities with porcelain veneers telling you that you can "replicate their smile by using this product"... infact it's all rather low key. Ironically, out of all the whitening toothpastes I have used over the years including the big guns, White Glo is by far the most impressive brand for how it delivers on actually whitening/stain reduction. 

They have several varieties of their whitening toothpastes, with everything from a smokers formula to ones that contain a 2 in 1 mouthwash and toothpaste. However, for me it was the coffee and tea drinkers formula that really interested me.

Most of us dislike the colour of our teeth when they look more yellow that white. The beauty about a toothpaste that is aimed at coffee and tea drinkers, is that it is designed to eradicate these tones especially... hence why it's so good even if like me you no longer drink tea or coffee, or only have it occasionally.

Honestly, no toothpaste will make your teeth a crisp linen shirt shade of white without bleach. However, I believe this toothpaste really does make a visible difference, especially compared to it's competitors. I find myself going back to it quite often and even after trying another White Glo toothpaste, I prefer this one. I've now been using it over the course of a few months, and feel it is the best whitening toothpaste on the market that I have tried so far.

Definitely give it a try if you are looking to remove some surface stains or want a more gentle alternative than bleaching. It may also save you from shelling out for more costly whitening treatments if your tooth staining is fairly recent or minor.

White Glo Coffee and Tea Drinker's Formula is currently £3.99 in Boots. It can also be purchased on Amazon if you are not from the UK. 

Monday, 21 April 2014

A Guide To Buying Pale Foundations

Click the above picture to watch my latest video on tips for buying foundation when you have ultra fair skin!

Hopefully my points will help, and again I want to stress I am not deliberately trying to insult any counter assistant's out there. However, I can only go on my past experiences and I feel as if I have been royally conned on many occasions, and I want others to avoid the same fate.

Having said that, as mentioned in my video some of the best companies I have had a good match to are: Bobbi Brown, Laura Mercier and Illamasqua. I feel these three companies best cater for pale skin, although of course there is always room for a greater spectrum of shades from these brands and others alike.

Over the years, my pale skin has been "colour matched" everything from Illamasqua skin base in 02 (the lightest shade as pictured above) to Estee Lauder in Desert Beige...

It just goes to show how different each beauty counter and company can massively mis-judge your skintone, especially when you are pale (and these people are supposed to be the experts!)

N.B: Although I have tried fake tan once in the past, never when going for a foundation fitting incase you were wondering. I have *only* been "matched" to my natural celtic skintone! </foundationpolice> 

I wanted to address a few points I feel are really helpful when shopping for foundation when you have pale (lighter than NC15) skin. Afterall, how much money do we actually waste on products we can't wear because they are too dark, or the wrong undertone... or just plain orange looking?!

Here are some of my top tips. Remember, if you'd like to share some of your counter experiences (good or bad) then please leave me a comment below or on my accompanying video linked at the top of this post!

1. Lighting

Remember that shop lighting, particularly in department stores is artificial. This means it can massively distort the colour of both your skintone (I always look tanned in Boots!) and also the colour of the foundation you are swatching. Always swatch the product and then have a look outside in good natural light to see both it's true colour, and the level of oxidisation that's occured once the product has reacted with the air. 

2. Research

Whilst computer screens and photography can give a slightly different picture, always google swatches of foundations you are interested in trying. It may take the fun out of it a little, but believe me... a counter assistant is unlikely to inform you they don't make shades light enough for your skin tone if they don't. I've been told "wow this shade is perfect for you!" when I trust them, end up parting with my cash only to get it home and see it is way off, to know this isn't the case. 

Better safe that sorry, and apologies if you are an honest counter assistant reading this, I know you are not all bad!

3. Always have contingency plans

Buying a white foundation is a must if you are pale, or perhaps only tan partially throughout the year. More on the art of mixing here

Remember, if a brand doesn't make a shade pale enough for you, as long as you get the undertone right you can cancel out any orange or yellow tones with just a drop of a white foundation. This means you can get the coverage and finish you want, but also at the right shade too. 

4. Look out for phrases such as "this will warm your skintone up a bit"

Foundation should be your skintone and your skintone only. Nobody looks good in foundation that gives them tide marks or is clearly too dark, so don't be fooled by such gibberish. How can you have a really warm toned face but a pale neck?! Exactly....

5. Don't be afraid to walk away

If you are matched at a counter and really don't feel comfortable, or want the second opinion of a friend, or even to look outside first and have a look in good daylight, then don't be afraid! You are the customer at the end of the day, and you should feel 100% confident in your purchase.