Thursday, 27 February 2014

Red Carpet Manicure

I have been using Red Carpet Manicure gel nails for about a year now. Available to buy online Red Carpet Manicure is an easy to use at home system for gel nails. 

I used to spend around £30 to get my gels done at salons and figured that having an at home system would save me a lot of money in the long run. Priced at £89.95 for the Professional Starter Kit you get all you need to create long wearing nail colour. 

The kit contains: The Professional LED light with timer function, Purify the pre and post application cleanser (59ml), Prep max adhesion sanitiser (9ml), Structure base coat gel (9ml), Brilliance seal and shine top coat gel (9ml), Erase gel nail polish remover (59ml), Revitalise nourishing cuticle oil and the LED Gel Polish (9ml) Red Carpet Reddy. 

The kit contains all you need to get started, it comes complete with a step by step instruction booklet so you know exactly how to do your nails.

The manicure itself is very simple to do but is quite time consuming. Here is a brief step by step process of your manicure.

1. Purify nails with the Purify solution using a fibre free cotton wool pad.
2. Apply the Prep coat to your nails.
3. Apply the first gel coat of the Structure base coat, I make sure the tips of the nails are completely covered because if you miss a bit the gel may peel after a few days. Set the coat under the LED lamp for the pre timed amount.
4. Apply the first thin layer of LED Gel Polish. Set the coat for pre timed amount. I tend to repeat this stage three times to build up a strong colour.
5. Set the gels with the Brilliance seal and shine top coat. Set the coat under the LED lamp for the pre timed amount. I tend to give it once extra blast with the light to make sure it's completely set.
6. Rub off the sticky residue with the Purify solution again using a fibre free cotton wool pad.

The final result is a high gloss chip free finish. Im a very hands on person so I find the manicure will last me at least 5 days before any peeling occurs. I know that for others it lasts much longer. On your toes it last for up to 4 weeks and only needs to be changed due to nail growth.

Here I have used two colours 130 You Like Me, You Really Like Me and 162 Glitteratzzi.

Red Carpet has a wide range of colours available all of which are available off their website, the only place I have seen them in stores has been in John Lewis where a limited selection is available.

These are all the colours I own and they are good long lasting. The only colour which I have a minor issue with is the pink shade 111 I Simply Love Your Nails as I find the pink tend to fade and the colour becomes a bit washed out after a few days of being worn.

Overall its a great product to have as it makes getting gels much cheaper then visiting the salon. Also being able to change your nail colour more often is great. The gels are easy to remove with the Erase solution, simply apply to cotton wool and leave on nails for around 5 minutes, wrapping tin foil around finger tips helps the cotton wool stay on.

e.l.f Product Review Part II

Following on from my previous post I will finish my review of e.l.f beauty products.

I thought I would give the e.l.f Mineral Infused Face Primer a go and see how it compares to other primers on the market. I have previously used Benefit and Clinique primers which are at the higher end of the price range. This primer priced at just £6 seemed to be worth a try. 

I chose the shade Radiant Glow because I thought it would be the best for my skin colour as I'm very pale. The consistency is nice a light, I just use one pump and that is enough to cover my whole face. It glides onto the skin easily and doesn't feel oily or drying at all. I have tried it out for a couple of weeks now and think it's great. I have worn it both under foundation and on its own and it looks great both ways. Defiantly a great value for money.

The next product is a designer dupe. Many top brands including Bobbie Brown have similar products to this on the market. Its used to correct tones in the face and brighten the skins appearance. It isn't a product I would usually buy but thought I'd give it a go.

The photo isn't very good quality unfortunately but you can see the slight colour correction the powder achieves. The powder itself is a lovely light texture which sits nicely on the skin. A product worth trying and at only £3.75 is a great price.

This product is the main reason for visiting the e.l.f website. I have have heard great reviews about this product being the dupe for NARS Laguna Bronzer and Orgasm Blush. On first look the packaging and colour looks extremely similar to that of the NARS product. Coming in the duo is highly convenient as it means you only need to carry one package in your makeup bag. 

The name of this duo is the Contouring Blush and Bronzing Powder in St Lucia, priced at £3.75 it once again is great value for money. The swatches shown show the colour as pretty dark, but when applied by a brush a light colour is achieved. The product is lighter and less pigmented then the NARS alternatives but for day to day use is ideal.

Monday, 17 February 2014

e.l.f Dupes and Product Review

I have read online that e.l.f cosmetics (eyeslipsface) are great dupes for many Nars, Dior and other top branded products. I thought I would see what all the hype was about. Having never previously used this brand I was interested to see what the product quality would be like. There website have an extensive range of products which are all at low prices. They often also have offers running which provides and even bigger saving. 

Here is all the products which I ordered. All these products including postage and packing came to a total of £16.89 due to the amazing offer they had on that day. Which is considerably cheaper then any Nars products.

The first product I was really excited to my hands on was the bronzer palette in Golden. It is a great dupe for Dior Amber Diamond. This product priced at only £3.75 is a massive saving compared to that of £32.00 for the Dior alternative.

The packaging for the product is good quality, very similar in look and feel to the Nars packaging. The product itself is a nice consistency, it feels light on the skin and gives you a lovely natural glow. I have a very pale skin tone and was concerned that this would make me look a little orange, but with a light powdering there is no orange sheen at all. Overall a very nice product.

A product I hadn't heard to much about but that caught my eye on the website were the individual eyeshadows. There is quite a large colour range available but I went for some pretty neutral colours as they are the most wearable. Priced at only £3.75 each, with an additional saving available when you by three, they are once again great value.

Here are some swatches of the eyeshadows, the lighter colours don't show up to well on my hand because they have a very sheer finish, but would be good to use for highlighting the inner eye and brow. Im not as impressed with the eye shadows as I am with the bronzer because they aren't very pigmented. They will be good for day time use to give a suitable hit of colour or highlight but I don't think they would be suitable for creating a dramatic smokey eye look.

To prevent having a super long single blog I am going to split the reviews over a few blogs over the next week.