Friday, 29 August 2014

Amazing Chic Nails Autumn Collection Swatches and Review

There's a new indie polish brand on the scene and it goes by the name of Amazing Chic Nails created by the lovely Fiona.  It's a Canadian company but she ships internationally so everybody can get their hands on her gorgeous polishes.  All the polishes are 3 free and vegan friendly, which is always good to know (I love that lots of indie brands are - it's a shame that not more of the big high street brands can claim the same).  

The Amazing Chic Nails Autumn Collection* (released on September 1st) is a gorgeous variety of glitter toppers, shimmer polishes and opalescent polishes - and all have names inspired by the UK which is a fun touch.  Without further ado, here are the swatches of all eight polishes in the Autumn Collection...

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

New from Too Faced: Bulletproof Eyeliner, Cat Eyes Palette and Cocoa Powder Foundation

New make up from Too Faced: Bulletproof eyeliner, Cat Eyes palette and Cocoa Powder Foundation

Back last October when I was in New York I discovered the make up brand Too Faced and wrote a review of the products I bought then here.  I loved the fun packaging and the Natural Eyes palette I bought then has become one of my favourite go-to palettes because the eyeshadows have great pigment and last really well.  Since I have rather fallen for the brand, I was gutted to miss out on the launch event for their latest releases as I was in Istanbul en route to Africa.  However, I've been testing out the  new products over the last week and I am as delighted with them as I was with my first haul last year.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Kiko Foot Treatments Review

Kiko Foot Treatments Review

In the last few months my feet have really been through the wars: at the beginning of the year I trained for three months for a half marathon which resulted in losing a couple of toenails (sorry, gross, I know - just be grateful I'm not posting a photo of that!).  Far from ideal when summer was approaching and sandals and flip flops were going to be my footwear of choice for the foreseeable future.  [As a side point, I discovered that fake toe nails are a thing and they saved too much grossness - but we also had a hilarious incident in Istanbul when one flew off my toe and five of us spent five minutes trying to find it among the cobbles in the street].  This summer also saw me spending two weeks in Rwanda (I haven't mentioned it much, have I?!) and my feet were subjected to a lot of dust and very little time for care... so, when I returned home to find a lovely package of the new Kiko Foot Treatments* waiting for me, I couldn't have been more delighted.

Friday, 22 August 2014

Kiko Glamorous Eye Pencil Review

Kiko Glamorous Eye Pencil review

Kiko is fast becoming one of my favourite beauty brands - they're pretty new to the UK but now have stores at both London Westfields and a big one on Regent Street (as well as Leeds and Guildford).  They're both inexpensive and good quality, which is the best combination isn't it?  I like to think of them as 'fast beauty' - due to the tiny price tag of their products, it's great for picking up something on the go because if it's not quite right, it doesn't matter too much.  It's also great for trying out new products or colours you're not quite sure about.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Trek to the Mountain Gorillas in Rwanda with Bizidanny Tours (Review)

Guhonda, oldest Silverback mountain gorilla in Rwanda

So today is a totally different post from normal - it has nothing to do with nail polish or beauty, but I wanted to share a highlight from my recent trip to Rwanda: trekking to see the mountain gorillas.  If you're reading because you're thinking of booking a trip to see the gorillas and you're looking for more information about permits and the process of finding a company, head to the bottom of the post where I've described it in more detail.

I booked my trip with Bizidanny Tours and couldn't have been more delighted with them.  My English-speaking driver, Bosco, was there to greet me at Kigali Airport when we landed from Kamembe.  That afternoon we drove up to Ruhengeri, in Rwanda's Northern Province.  On the way we stopped at some beautiful view points, from where I could appreciate the patchwork landscape - small banana plantations here, some coffee plants there - and I even tasted a raw coffee bean.  Bosco was great company and we had long discussions about Rwanda as it is now, but he also let me into the history of the country, which for every Rwandan over the age of 20 is all too vivid in the memory.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Makeup Revolution Nail Polish Review and Swatches: Cool Days, Boy Needs A Girl and Flawless

I've had these Makeup Revolution nail polishes for ages but only now am I getting around to posting them.  Makeup Revolution launched earlier this year and has had hugely positive reviews from pretty much everybody (I haven't read a negative review yet) - if you've yet to hear about Makeup Revolution, it's a budget beauty brand.  Some of their best sellers are the dupe palettes of Urban Decay's Naked palettes (read my review on their make up here), but they have a huge range of lipsticks, nail polishes and all other sorts of things too!

Friday, 15 August 2014

Nail Painting with Street Children in Rwanda and Models Own Artstix

I may have mentioned this once or twice recently(!), but I took a few weeks off from the blog earlier in the summer because I was with a group of UK teachers teaching children and training teachers in Kamembe in south west Rwanda.  I'll be doing another post soon about more of the things we got up to, but today I just wanted to focus on a fab afternoon we had with the street children of Kamembe at the Baho Neza Mwana centre.  You can read the post about the day from our daily blog here.

Baho Neza Mwana takes in children who, for various reasons, either do not have families or do not have families who take proper care of them.  The project is funded by Rwanda Aid and aims to give the children shelter if they need it, as well as keeping them busy with fun activities and helping them to learn skills such as sewing.  Eventually they would like to see all the children reintegrated into their families or families found for them to live with permanently.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Models Own Sweet Shop Collection Swatches and Review

Whilst I was in Rwanda, Models Own released their new Sweet Shop Collection* - five sweetie-themed polishes to add to their scented range.  The colours (should I say flavours?) are all reminiscent of sweets of yesteryear and the scents will I'm sure bring some memories back.  The polishes are a mixture of cremes and sparkly jellies and are all priced at £4.99 each (or if you're at one of the Bottleshops you can pick up six polishes for £20).

Monday, 11 August 2014

Triplet Nails: Water Spotted with Models Own Polish For Tans and Ice Neons

I'm back!  It feels like a long while since I last posted - the reason for my absence (as you may have seen on Instagram) was that I've been teaching in Rwanda.  I had the most wonderful and memorable trip - if you want to read more about what we got up to, we wrote a daily blog here: