THE THOUGHT PROCESSES OF WEARING RED LIPSTICK

DSC_0029Getting ready in the morning for a day of frolicking in your red lipstick can be quite the task. Slut, vixen, glamorous, whore, classy, overdone, elegant, harlot, vamp, tramp, fancy, tart, polished, bimbo and refined are all words that are used on a daily basis to describe a woman in her red lipstick. Too dark and she’s a vamp, too bright and she’s a whore, too sheer and she’s a virgin, too glossy and she’s an airhead but too matte and she’s polished. It’s no wonder why we get so many mixed reactions from strangers when we dare to step out with a hint (or a lot) of crimson tint pasted (or slicked, patted or smeared) onto our lips.

Thesaurus-swallowing adjectives aside, the Red Lip phase of applying your makeup is a huge step. Do I just do a tinted balm? Will I need a liner? What about gloss? Matte, creamy, sheer or opaque? Oh for God’s sake just choose one. Matte, Charlotte Tilbury’s Red Carpet Red. Committing to a full day of teeth-checking in any shiny surface commences.

Leaving the house is the next step. Hair down with a glossy red lip is a no-go if it’s windy and you don’t want half the tube of gloss smeared over your cheeks by the time you get to work; but hair up and you might be seen as an ‘over-done dolly bird’; or a messy bun and you could might look like the 14 year-old hipster opposite you on the tube. Half-up-half-down? Seems feasible.

It’s been on a few hours, you’re looking fabulous, it’s done a good job of keeping your spirits high through the pain of commuting to work, but now it’s lunchtime. A sandwich is not happening, so a salad it is – starvation will mount, but accepting it is the first step to recovery. Salad has been consumed, you’re still hungry but at least your lips are in tact; now its time for your seventh mirror-check of the day so far.

Work is over and Olivia and Louisa, the Red Lipstick Queens of the Office have invited you out for drinks – a further lipstick-assessment commences.

A few too many peach bellinis later, your lipstick has survived, barely, but you’re a bit too tipsy to care, that salad hasn’t done much in the way of soaking up the alcohol. You got asked for your number by a very handsome man named Pierre, but refrained from a full-on smooch for lipstick reasons.

After a bleary-eyed Uber home, you’re back in the comforts of your bathroom assessing the day’s facial situation. Your lipstick is there, if a bit patchy, dry and making you feel like you have 17 layers of red Pritt Stick smothering your mouth. All that’s needed now is your trusty Bioderma, a stack of cotton pads, and another 20 minutes to scrub the remains of the day off your face. All to wake up in the morning to find the stain on your lips is enough to last for another 5 days. And they say red lipstick is high maintenance…

NEW YEAR, NEW SKIN: MAGNITONE BAREFACED! REVIEW

DSC_0018Last year, Magnitone kindly sent me one of their Barefaced! Cleansing Brushes to try and test on my skin. I have held off on posting my review for a while because I really wanted to give the device a thorough test over time in order to bring you the most well-informed and honest review. Having never owned anything like this before, I was so excited to get started!
DSC_0016MY SKIN TYPE
Lets break my skin down first, my skin type is sensitive, oily and acne prone. There are also times when I get dry patches, particularly around my nose; I have noticed this become more prominent as the colder months have engulfed us.

WHAT I LOOK FOR IN MY SKINCARE
I like my skin to feel squeaky clean, those with drier skin types might like to feel more nourished from their skincare, but I like a good scrub. I travel to and from uni most days (a 6-hour all-round commute) and on the other days I’m at work all day, so when I get home, I like my skin to feel like it has had a good clean. Having said that, I don’t like the tight, dry feeling that can come with a good deep clean, I just like the surface to feel fresh and the pores to feel cleared.

WHAT DOES MAGNITONE CLAIM?
Well first of all, the clue is in the name, the Magnitone Barefaced is supposed to leave you with skin that you love so much that you would go barefaced with. That’s quite a claim. As somebody who likes the full coverage porcelain look, I’m not about to go ‘barefaced’ any time soon, however I’ll take whatever this can give me… It claims to ‘deep cleanse pores, tone, and beautifully condition your skin…’. It has a 60-second timer with 20-second intervals to change the location of the cleanse, for example, 20 seconds for the forehead and nose, 20 seconds for the cheeks and chin and 20 seconds for the neck. The bristles of the brush head are soft and do a good job of cleansing without being too scratchy.

WHAT I USE IT WITH
I have been using, and loving the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Purifying Foaming Gel (why do these products have SUCH longggggg naaaaames?) for the past 6-7 months and it’s been doing a really good job of clearing my pores and keeping my face feeling fresh. However once I started using the Magnitone, I noticed that my skin was feeling a bit too clean with it, and that I needed something that wasn’t solely aimed at skin clearing and oil control. So I decided to go for something a bit gentler and I’ve been really loving the Aloe Gentle Facial Wash from The Body Shop. It’s just as clean-feeling, with no scent, but doesn’t leave the skin feeling tight after. DSC_0017HOW OFTEN DO I USE IT?
I started off using the Magnitone Barefaced! every day, at night time, after taking my makeup off. I soon found this to be a little bit too intimidating for my skin and my face soon told me off by giving me a slight bumpy rash around my cheeks, my most sensitive area. I persevered with it but reduced the usage to around twice a week and this is still how often I use it and I’ve found the happy medium. This is not for daily use on someone who has slightly sensitive skin, I found it to become an overload of pressure on any section of the face that didn’t really need deep cleansing as much as some other parts such as the chin or nose.

RESULTS AFTER 3 MONTHS
Having used the Magnitone Barefaced! for the past three months now, I’ve found that my skin does feel clearer, I haven’t noticed any difference in terms of oil production, I’ve read reviews where people have said that their skin became less oily after using it, but I haven’t noticed that. I would say however that my skin is a lot smoother since using it, it definitely feels well-exfoliated after and my skin always drinks up the products that I place on top, my night creams and eye creams do tend to sink in better once I’ve used it. 

WOULD I RECOMMEND IT?
I would recommend this product to anyone who has acne-prone oily skin like myself but I would say this is more suited to somebody who has less sensitive skin than me. I don’t know how this works out on dry skin as I simply don’t have super dry patches anywhere, but this works well on my sometimes-combination skin.
As for comparisons with other skin cleaners like the Clarisonic, I can’t really comment on as I’ve never owned or tried any of them, however with the Clarisonic placed at a slightly higher price point than the Magnitone which costs £70, I would say that if the two products worked and felt the same and left with the same results, I would rather pay less and get the Magnitone, I don’t think that this kind of result should cost more than the Magnitone anyway. It hasn’t done anything revolutionary to my skin, but it is a really nice product. My skin likes it, doesn’t love it, but everyone’s skin is different. Try it out, see if it works for you!

Magnitone Barefaced! Face Cleansing Brush – £70

MY BLOG IS 3!

So today my blog turned three years old! It feels like I’ve only been blogging for five minutes, so I have no idea where the past three years have gone.

I am not the most consistent of bloggers, I’ll be the first to admit, and every year I set myself goals to ‘be a better blogger’, but at the end of the day I just think that I blog because I love it, I don’t want to force it. I love reading comments, the social media interaction with readers as well as emails sent to me, which I find amazing!

Thank you to anyone who takes the time to read my blog, my readership has dramatically increased in the past year. It is so very much appreciated, I’ve had such a great year blog-wise and can’t wait to see what the next three years hold. I finish uni this year so once I get my free time back I promise to get back into the wing of things with regular posts! DSC_0004

THE FUTURE OF BEAUTY SHOPPING

Beauty-Library_Nendo_dezeen_784_14New ways of buying products are cropping up all the time, but the Beauty Library is a true innovation in the experience of beauty shopping.

Walking into a department store’s ground floor beauty department is one of life’s great thrills. All twinkly, bright lights, floral, heady, woody scents from competing perfume counters, silver, gold, shiny, white, clinical surfaces ahead – as far as the eye can see. The beauty department is a haven of hope. Hope that you will be able to achieve the perfect winged liner. Hope that you will walk away with the magic potion of making you look ten years younger. Hope that THAT eye cream will forever banish dark circles and forever give you that natural glow. Hope that the beauty department can pat, smudge, massage and rub all of your beauty woes away.

Whilst the beauty department is, and possibly forever will be, THE place you turn to when in need of some beauty retail therapy, the Japanese (of course) have come up with a new way to try (and shop) new beauty products.

Introducing Nendo’s Beauty Library. A hybrid of a beauty boutique and a café, the newly-designed conceptual space offers customers a way of enhancing their inner and outer beauty at the same time in the same place. Located on a street just behind Aoyama Street in Tokyo, the contemporary space is designed to allow customers to browse organic beauty products on a tablet and order them to try as if they would a beverage… whilst ordering a beverage.

This ‘new breed’ of shopping for beauty products is all becoming a part of a personalisation trend within our modern lifestyles. Everything we consume, eat, watch, do, read, listen to is all tailored to our own tastes and now even the way we shop for our beauty products is purely personalised. What is more personal than sitting in a café with your friends on your lunch break, and pondering over beauty samples and salads?

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We’ve seen ‘gimicky’ cafés before with the Cereal Killer Café and Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium, but the Beauty Library is less about the gimmick and more about the practicality of combining two pastimes in one. A girl has to eat, and she also has to take care of her skin, combining the two and makes it a lunch date worth penciling in.

Nendo describes the Beauty Library as “for nature’s way”, as all the products, both beauty and food are organically sourced and the atmosphere relaxing.

Department store shopping can be a thrill, but can also come with the burden of brushing off overly-pushy sales assistants offering you all manner of products that you have no interest in. The real pull with the Beauty Bar is that there is no pressure to buy anything, apart from maybe an organic juice. You simply sit down, at an ordinary table or a specially-reserved area of ‘self study’, order the product samples and get applying. All products are fitted with QR codes that customers can then scan with their mobile devices and purchase online later. These QR codes are also filled with information about each product and the ingredient properties so the customer can make fully informed decisions about their skincare preferences and purchases, hence where the name ‘Beauty Library’ derives. The space itself actually resembles a library, all simplistic warm shelving, backlit with LED lights so as to enhance the beauty of the products themselves; the library-like feel of the café enables customers to feel personally attached to the products and services themselves, as one would whilst reading in a library.

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Presenting beauty products as books is a new way of looking not only at the products but as the industry as a whole. It’s giving them real value, showing us how valuable they can be.

So the future of beauty shopping is valuing the products on offer, valuing the time, effort and talent that went into producing and presenting them to us, valuing the importance of a buying experience.

Image(s) Source: Nendo