Thursday, 29 May 2014

Tresemme Keratin Smooth Collection Review

Tresemme Keratin Smooth Collection Review

Last summer I had Nanokeratin treatment on my hair at Vidal Sassoon.  I was sceptical at the time as to whether it would have any noticeable effect on my hair - I have fine, long hair that air dries poker-straight.  This is often to my frustration because I would love to have beautiful, thick curly hair - but the grass is always greener isn't it?  So why would I want to go through a treatment to make my hair stay straighter?  The process was rather lengthy - in the first appointment they had to wash my hair, then put the treatment in it and leave it for a while to set before blow drying it and straightening it (which smelled horrible and made me wonder what on earth they were doing to my hair).  I then wasn't allowed to wash my hair for three days, or even tie it up - both of which were frankly quite tortuous!  I had to go back for them to wash the treatment out.  Overall I was actually pleasantly surprised by just how much I loved the result. My hair was so soft and slinky and it really felt like I'd had it straightened after each wash.  It looked great and was hassle-free (blow-drying was quicker and the hair much less flyaway afterwards).  They said it would last 4 or so months, but that was complete rubbish (even though I religiously used the correct sulphate-free shampoo and conditioner they had given me)!  It lasted maybe 6 weeks - and for £200 that's more than I'm prepared to spend on my hair... which is why I was intrigued when I saw that Tresemme had brought out a Keratin Smooth Collection.

Tresemme Keratin Smooth Collection Review

There are a number of products in the Tresemme Keratin Smooth range - but I just decided to try out the 7 Day Smooth Shampoo, Conditioner and Heat Activated Treatment.  The process starts with washing your hair normally with the shampoo and conditioner, then once you've towel-dried your hair, it says to put 8-10 pumps of the product through the hair, avoiding the scalp, then comb through.  Now, on my first use, I followed this to the number - but realised pretty quickly that it was way too much for my hair to cope with.  Maybe if I had thicker hair, 8-10 pumps would be the right amount - but since then, I usually use about 3-4 pumps which is plenty.  Then you blow dry your hair until completely dry.  To activate the thermal technology, you straighten your hair, doing it in small sections and straightening each section 3-5 times.  Sounds a bit of a lengthy process but this only needs to be done maybe once a week, depending on how often you wash your hair.  It does recommend that you continue to use the shampoo and conditioner for subsequent washes to prolong the smoothness.

And the result?  Well, I am pleasantly surprised by this at-home range of products.  They have carefully not called it Keratin Straight - because that's really not what it's meant to do.  It's meant to smooth the hair and keep it sleek, which it totally does.  It also really softens the hair and it feels amazing for a good couple of washes.  It reckons that it should keep the effects of the thermal technology for up to four washes - which I think is a bit optimistic, but it certainly works for two washes.

Here's a photo of my hair just after straightening and another photo of how it looked after I just blow-dried it after the next wash.  I meant to get photos of how it looked after the second, third and fourth but I'm afraid I forgot and then didn't get around to starting the process all over again!

Tresemme Keratin Smooth Collection ReviewTresemme Keratin Smooth Collection Review

Obviously I have a certain type of hair - I'd love to know how people with different hair types have got on with this range - if you're one of them, let me know in the comments below!

I really like this range and I will definitely continue to use it - for a grand total of £18.97 this is a much cheaper option than a Nanokeratin treatment.  Yes it isn't quite the same, but at a snip of the price I think it's a great range to try out at home and see if it works for you.

Tresemme 7 Day Keratin Smooth Shampoo is £5.99/250ml, Conditioner is £5.99/250ml and Heat Activated Treatment is £6.99/120ml - but currently there's a 3 for 2 offer on in both Superdrug and Boots and online at www.boots.com and www.superdrug.com.

Monday, 26 May 2014

100 Happy Days: Week 8

Week 8 of my 100 Happy Days project on has been great fun - particularly because this weekend I went on an 80s road trip with my friend in his DeLorean... so a fair few of my photos have been of that! Week 9 brings a week's holiday so lots of nice things ahead, too... hop over to my Instagram to find out more about these photos (and to see some awesome DeLorean shots...)

100 Happy Days Week 8


Since it's bank holiday in the UK this weekend, I'm taking a holiday today from a proper post - but I'll be back on Thursday with something new! Hope to see you then...

Friday, 23 May 2014

A New Obsession... Miller Harris - Fleur Perfume Trio Set


Miller Harris Fleur Perfume Trio Set review

I have known of Miller Harris ever since one of my best friends was bought Fleur du Matin by her boyfriend a few years ago - I fell in love with it as much as she did though never owned it myself.  I've been on the search for My Perfume for a while, you know, the one that suits me perfectly and that reminds people of me when they smell it [ha, sure, because obviously being reminded of me is super important.  I jest].  I have tried and failed to find one from the standard big designer brands and in the back of my head I've always had Miller Harris (but perhaps not the money to indulge in it)... so it was for that reason that I was extremely excited to find this Fleur Trio Set* in my goodie bag from the QVC Autumn/Winter 2014 event last week.  Honestly, I was so excited it even made it into my 100 Happy Days for that day!

The set contains 15ml each of La Pluie, Noix de Tubereuse and Rose en Noir and comes in a little bright pink cardboard box.  The bottles are just so gorgeous - even for mini bottles (which often in brands don't carry the same quality that the full size ones do) - they're heavy glass with beautiful flowers drawn on the back (I want to say they're fig... I could be wrong).

Miller Harris Fleur Perfume Trio Set review

La Pluie is poetically described as a 'story of tropical showers and the balmy climate of a faraway island' - isn't that just so perfect?  From the description alone, without even smelling it, I love it!  How many perfumes are described in such an exquisite way?  It has top notes of bergamot, tangerine, lavender and wheat; the centrepiece or heart notes [I'm learning the lingo all the time] are ylang ylang, cassie, jasmine and Tunisian orange flowers.  Finally the base notes are vetiver bourbon and vanilla bourbon.  This is definitely my favourite of the three because it's the one I think is the freshest.  It's a lovely daytime spring perfume that I know will be wafting around me in the coming weeks!

Noix de Tubereuse is 'inspired by one of the last remaining tuberose fields in Grasse'.  Tuberose is a night-blooming flower which is commonly used for middle notes in perfume - however, it's the leaves that are the centre of this perfume.  The base notes in this one are tonka bean, vanilla and amber; heart notes are tuberose, jasmine and mimosa; and finally top notes of mandarin, green clover and violet leaf.  Grasse is significant because it's the world's capital of perfume [apparently, I just discovered this] - and particularly to Miller Harris because the founder Lyn Harris trained there.  I would say that this one is more of an evening scent, but still springtime because it's quite light - there are so many notes in this that you can really understand why Miller Harris perfumes are so very special and beautifully, thoughtfully created.

Rose en Noir is 'a velvety rich fragrance inspired by the sensual and dark side of the rose.'  This is the most cologne-like of the three: Miller Harris perfumes aren't designed to be either for women or for men, but this one is probably the most likely to be a more masculine one.  It's a super fresh one though, despite being the dark side of the rose.  The top notes are raspberry, violet leaf and petitgrain; heart notes are rich and dark with Turkish rose, poivre noir and nutmeg; finally with base notes of patchouli, vetiver, tabac noir and ambrette seed.

Miller Harris Fleur Perfume Trio Set review

I love the fact that I've been able to try out three of these scents - and it's great to be able to mix them up, because if you just wear one your nose can become accustomed to it and it loses its power.

On the Miller Harris website it says that 'one is instinctively drawn to this range of exquisitely crafted fragrances, choosing different scents to suit different seasons, occasions and moods, such that you build up a wardrobe of fragrances rather than being restricted to purely one.'  Uh oh, Miller Harris, you got me... thus begins my wardrobe-building!  Watch this space - I have more to come from Miller Harris next week...

Miller Harris Fleur Perfume Trio Set review

There are four different trios: Fleur, Citrus, Fruit and Wood (£50 for 3 x 15ml).  Miller Harris perfumes are available from www.millerharris.com and some are online at www.qvcuk.com - the rest will be there in the autumn.


*PR sample

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Pixi Make Up Review

Pixi Make Up Review

Last week I went with Emily of Blog-Me-Beautiful to the Pixi press day.  Pixi's not a brand I had ever heard of before I visited their sweet little shop just off Carnaby Street in Soho, London.  Started over ten years ago by Swedish Petra Strand, a make up artist and product developer, their aim is 'simply to bring out the natural beauty in all women - to make women look like themselves, only better'.  

Pixi Make Up Review

At the event we were introduced to the new products for Spring/Summer 2014: three Mesmerizing Mineral Palettes (£12 each), six Shea Butter Lip Balms (£8 each), six new Nail Polishes (£8 each), two new Natural Brow Duos (£12.50 each) and three shades of H20 Skin Tint (£21 each).

I was given the Mesmerizing Mineral Palette in Plum Quartz*, the Shea Butter Lip Balm in Natural Rose* and the Nail Polish in LA Blue* to try out.

Pixi Mesmerizing Mineral Eyeshadow Palette Plum Quartz swatch and review

Starting with the eyeshadow palette - there are six squares of plum, cocoa and pinky-nude shades, which are mostly shimmer shadows (which is my preference usually).  I was told that this palette would bring out the blue in my grey eyes!  The shadows are really well pigmented and they last brilliantly without creasing all day - I was really impressed. They also contain Vitamin E to nourish and protect delicate skin around the eye.  I did find the fact they were squares and not stripes (like in Urban Decay palettes for example) a little difficult.  That said, this didn't matter at all - I love the shades and have really enjoyed using it so far.  Definitely a great little palette to pop into a weekend make up bag.

Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm Natural Rose review

Next I have the Shea Butter Lip Balm in Natural Rose.  I have had a tendency of late to wear brightly coloured lipsticks of the almost neon variety - but I've found the No7 Stay Perfect one I have dries out my lips like nobody's business, which really takes away from the enjoyment of wearing it.  The same certainly cannot be said for this lovely lip balm.  The shea butter is really nourishing and although the formula feels really light on the lips, it gives really good colour which lasts really well.  I love the smell and the smooth and silky feeling of the shea butter and the colour aspect gives it an added bonus.

Below you can see it on my lips - sorry for the massive photo of them...!

Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm Natural Rose swatch and review

The final item I got to try out was the stunning, almost-neon blue nail polish called LA Blue.  The formula was really easy to apply and didn't go on too thickly or unevenly.  The polish dries to a slightly matte effect, so I put a glossy top coat of Seche Vite on top.  The photos below show two coats.  One thing I found a little annoying was the length of the brush.  It's quite a long, tall bottle and so the brush has to be long to get to the bottom - but it didn't make it particularly easy to paint accurately and neatly with it.  I do adore this colour though - it's so stunning in real life, unfortunately I couldn't quite get my camera to capture it accurately, so this is the best match I could find!

Pixi nail polish LA BluePixi nail polish LA Blue

Overall I really like these new products from Pixi and I would definitely consider buying more polish and another palette, but I can be pretty sure I'll be going back for another lip balm which was possibly my favourite of the three products I tried.  The one thing I'm not such a big fan of is the packaging - I'm not keen on the pale green of the bottle lids and plastic packaging as I feel it intrudes on the colours of the products.

Have you tried anything from Pixi?  What would you like to try the most?

Pixi make up is available in store (in Foubert's Place in Soho) or online at www.pixibeauty.co.uk

*PR sample

Monday, 19 May 2014

NEW Models Own Fruit Pastels: Coconut Cream and Peach Melba


Models Own has done it once again and added more polishes to its line up.  Last week saw the release in Bottleshops and on www.modelsownit.com of two new Fruit Pastels scented polishes: Coconut Cream and Peach Melba.  These two add to the existing Fruit Pastels collection of five polishes which were released in spring 2013.  I'm really glad to see that they've added a pale orange as a) I don't have one and b) I thought the original line up could have done with one.  I'm not so bothered about another white polish, as I already have (and adore) White Light from the Hypergels collection.

Models Own Coconut Cream and Peach Melba

Coconut Cream

Models Own Coconut Cream swatchModels Own Coconut Cream swatch

Coconut Cream is an off-white white - I'm not sure it's the colour of coconuts, it reminds me more of toasted marshmallow.  When not compared to white, it just looks white, but put it next to White Light (as you'll see below), it's definitely not pure white.  The smell of coconut is intense - think Malibu and you've got Coconut Cream.  It's a nice smell - at first... but I have to say, having worn it for a day last week, it was rather a relief to take it off because it's so sweet and overpowering.  You have to love coconut to wear this polish!  Even a topcoat didn't dull the smell at all.  

Models Own Coconut Cream vs White Light swatch


Peach Melba

Models Own Peach Melba swatchModels Own Peach Melba swatch

Peach Melba has a much more pleasant smell - I'd say it's quite close to peach, but isn't quite there.  It reminds me of something from my childhood I just cannot put my finger on what it is (sorry, useless help).  Colour-wise, I love this baby tangerine polish - it will look fantastic with a tan and I love the fact that it completes the rest of the pastel colours in the original Fruit Pastels collection.

Formula
It's worth commenting on the formula of these.  As you can see in the photos above - my swatches are less than flawless.  These two are very similar in consistency to the original Fruit Pastels - unfortunately I find them rather gloopy... one coat isn't enough for opacity, two just about does it (all the photos above show two coats), but ideally for colour I'd go for three - but then the polish looks really thick and gummy, not ideal.  One thin coat dries pretty speedily, but I found two stayed tacky for quite a while and three was a nightmare!  Finishing with a topcoat of Seche Vite helped a bit, but sadly I did rather struggle with these polishes.  I'm sure there will be others who can make them look perfect, but not me, not today!

The two new Fruit Pastels polishes are available in Bottleshops and online at www.modelsownit.com for £5 each.




Sunday, 18 May 2014

100 Happy Days: Week 7

This week marks the midpoint in my 100 Happy Days project on Instagram... I'll let the photos do the talking and if you want to know more about them, hop over to my Instagram to read the captions!



Friday, 16 May 2014

My New Skincare Regime from REN Skincare

REN Skincare review - clarifying toner, micellar water and glycolactic renewal mask

Although I swore here that I had found a new skincare regime in Liz Earle that I was going to stick to, after going to a REN event earlier this year I discovered I was a fan of their products, particularly their amazing V-Cense moisturisers which smell incredible.  Since my Liz Earle stuff ran out, I decided to switch to REN.

One of the things I love about REN is the fragrance of the products in comparison with Liz Earle - I find Liz Earle's quite aromatic, which although not unpleasant, I'm not a huge fan of.  The REN products I've tried all have a fresh or luxurious smell which I just find a real joy to use.  The packaging is also a bit more interesting than Liz Earle's - though on the down side, both the micellar water and toner have screw tops and a tiny hole to drop onto a cotton pad, which is a bit of a faff (in comparison to Liz Earle's toner which has a twist up lid which doesn't require taking off).

Enough about Liz Earle.  This is about REN.  I've bought three new products recently - the Clarifying Toner (£12/150ml), the 3-in-1 Cleansing Water (£13/200ml) and the famed Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask (£30/50ml).

REN Skincare review - clarifying toner, micellar water and glycolactic renewal mask


The Clarifying Toner is alcohol free and doesn't, to my nose, have a distinct fragrance.  It contains a number of natural extracts, including salicilin from willow bark, glycolic acid from pineapple extract, lactic acid from passion fruit, citric acid from lemon extract and tartaric acid from grape extract.  There are also some flavonoids in it which come from mayblossom and have antibacterial properties.  I've been using it for a few weeks and my skin does seem to be just a tad less oily than it was before, but overall I've not noticed anything groundbreaking about it.  My skin does feel fresh and clear after using it and so it does seem to be doing its job - and it's probably a buy-again.

The 3-in-1 Cleansing Water or Micellar Water as they seem to be more commonly known.  A couple of weeks ago I'm slightly ashamed to admit that yes, I had heard of micellar water but I didn't really have a clue what it was for (and I call myself a beauty blogger - I know) and I certainly didn't use it.  So when I came across REN's version of the cult product in Space NK in Brighton, I figured I might as well give it a go since I like the REN products I've already tried.  If you're still not sure what micellar water is for, it's for removing make up (make up wipes are apparently a big no-no as they only remove surface make up and don't properly cleanse - throw them out now!)  According to Vogue, "micellar waters use tiny micelle particles to draw make-up (including waterproof mascara), sebum and impurities from the skin".  The REN micellar water even makes Vogue's list of the top 10 micellar waters.  I'd say it's nice - and the rose fragrance of the Rosa Centifolia range is pleasant - but it really doesn't remove waterproof mascara very well (luckily the Rosa Centifolia Hot Cloth Cleanser is capable of removing what's left).  It also seems that a little doesn't really go a long way and I'm tearing through my bottle with rather alarming speed for the price of a relatively small bottle.  The other thing I've noticed is that I've had a few more spots than I'm used to - however, I'm going to persevere with it - it's fine... but I'll update this post when I've got a better idea of long-term use.

The Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask is a totally different story from the slightly underwhelming previous two products.  Wow.  That's basically all I have to say...!  People rave about this hero product for a reason - it feels lovely (a little tingly maybe) when it's on and my skin feels amazing after I take it off.  It really does make skin soft and smoothe and make it appear more plumped.  It's a real midweek treat for me (it should be used about once a week).  Fragrance-wise, it has the citrusy tang of the fruit acids it contains - passion fruit, lemon, grape and pineapple.  At £30, it's definitely not going to be up everybody's street - I see face masks as an indulgence, as opposed to a necessity (but skincare gurus may disagree).  BUT, if you are looking for a decent, good quality, effective face mask - this might just be the one you're looking for.


Have you ever used any REN products?  Are there any you're interested in trying out?

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Boots Aftersun Care: Soltan Body Butter and No7 Body Shimmer

Boots aftersun care: No7 Body Shimmer and Soltan Body Butter

At the Boots #BootsCamp event a few weeks ago, the onset of summer and the new season's products were the main topic of conversation.  One of my favourite things about summer is suncream.  I know, I know that sounds bizarre, but I just love the smell of it because it holds so many memories of summers past.  Everyone has their favourite sun protection brand and mine for as long as I can remember has been Boots Soltan, and year-in year-out it's what I stock up on.

I'm not planning a proper sun-packed beach holiday this year - I am actually going to Rwanda... and although I'm going to be indoors teaching kids for the first week and training teachers for the second and therefore unlikely to be seeing too much sun, I'll be taking some sun cream with me just in case.  Now, obviously, if you use the sun cream properly, you'll not have so much need for the pain-relieving aspects of aftersun, but replenishing your skin with moisture at the end of a day's sunbathing is both vital for avoiding wrinkles (though not sunbathing would be best for that...) and for prolonging your hard-earned tan.  I also love the routine of having a shower after a day in the sun, getting all the cream off me and covering myself in aftersun before going out for the evening meal (and then probably reapplying before bed).

Boots have got a whole range of aftersun products, but there are two I wanted to talk about today.  The first is No7 Body Shimmer Aftersun* (£9.50/200ml).  It's a golden-coloured lotion which I think smells lovely, but I don't think it would be to everybody's taste because it's perhaps a little synthetic.  There are notes of aloe vera in it, but it's reminiscent of the smell of traditional aftersun.  The best thing about it is the subtle shimmer it contains (sorry, I should have got a photo of it, but it's so subtle that it probably wouldn't have shown up well on camera) which would really enhance a tan and I think it would look particularly good on the legs - the glittery particles are tiny and you therefore don't feel like you're in some sort of mid-90s disco glitter disaster, which I find is always a bonus.

The second aftersun product to mention is the Soltan Intensely Moisturising Aftersun Body Butter* (currently £3.50/300ml, usually £7).  It's a big tub of cream, so potentially not ideal for light holiday packing (think a two week holiday rather than a weekend away).  It contains shea butter and almond oil, which sooth and reduce dryness as well as help to prevent peeling (essential if you want to keep that tan).  It hasn't got the same consistency as normal body butter - it's smoother, lighter and more creamy, but at the same time is quite thick (yes, you can have light and thick!)  It rubs in easily and feels a lot more moisturising than the standard aftersun you can get.  I imagine this would feel fantastic if you had accidentally gone a little pink.  The smell is pleasant and the shea butter fragrance comes through lightly.

Trying out these aftersun products makes me want to book myself a beach holiday in the sun so that I can make the most of them... let's just hope that summer in England this year is as good as it was last year!

Have you got any holidays booked this summer?  What are your favourite sun care products?  Let me know in the comments below!


*PR samples

Both the No7 Body Shimmer Aftersun and the Soltan Body Butter are available in Boots stores and online at www.boots.com.  There's currently a 3 for 2 offer on, which the No7 qualifies for and it's half price on selected Soltan suncare at the moment which the body butter qualifies for.  Bargain!



Monday, 12 May 2014

Murano Glass Concentric Rainbow Nail Art


Last week my rainbow dots and diamonds mani went down pretty well over on Instagram, so this week I decided to keep with the rainbow theme but try a different design.  I found this concentric circles pattern on Google and it reminded me a bit of murano glass, except without the flowery aspect.

If you would like to see how I did this design, I posted a quick tutorial over on Instagram.  If you have any questions, either drop me a note in the comments below, or comment on the Instagram tutorial and I'll do my best to help out!

All the polishes (except the yellow, that was an OPI mini from the Rock Goddess set called Yellopalooza) were Models Own Hypergels, which I am absolutely loving using at the moment.  

Murano glass concentric rainbow circles nail artMurano glass concentric rainbow circles nail art

Murano glass concentric rainbow circles nail artMurano glass concentric rainbow circles nail art

What do you think of this design?  Do you think it's a bit too busy?  I think it looks better from a distance - up close it's quite in your face!!  Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or tweet me @fundaflawless, I love reading them!

Sunday, 11 May 2014

100 Happy Days: Week 6

I can't believe that I'm almost halfway through my 100 Happy Days project on Instagram - some days it's trickier than others to choose a happy moment (that it's easy to take a photo of, not that there are no happy moments), but if I get stuck there's always a cup of tea!

I did go for a run for the first time since my half marathon yesterday, which was amazing but made me realise I still have a way to go with physio to get rid of my shin splints... I also took a trip to the Models Own Bottleshop to pick up some new polish and to visit Ellie, Nara and Aisha. My little maple tree got a new home in a bigger pot and my old housemate and I took a trip down memory lane to the pub quiz at the Jolly Gardeners in Putney (and didn't even come close to winning).


So that was the week that was. I'll be back again next Sunday with another week's highlights. In the meantime, come follow me on Instagram if you don't yet - I'm becoming a bit addicted to it!

Friday, 9 May 2014

Argan+ Ultra-Rich Body Butter Review


Argan+ Ultra-Rich Body Butter

Recently I've been trying out this Argan Oil Ultra-Rich Body Butter* (£8.99/300ml).  Now that we're coming in to summer, my limbs are in desperate need of some proper attention before I am prepared to bare them to the elements!  They need a lot of moisturising, so this body butter is a welcome newcomer to my pre-bedtime routine.  It contains Argan oil, as well as Baobab, Kukui, Moringa and Sacha Inci (yeah, I'd never heard of them either, but they do things like boost moisture, protect from free radicals and contain vitamins to promote healthy skin).

The body butter has a really smooth, non-greasy formula which I really appreciate; I hate going to bed feeling like I have Sudocrem all over my legs, particularly when I can still feel it in the morning.  It absorbs into the skin quickly and leaves it feeling soft and smooth.  The fragrance is really luxurious and makes me think of incense and hot summer nights - it is described as 'infused with notes of sultry florals alongside opulent fruit accords...uniquely exotic fragrance' - which, let's be honest, is a bit wordy but actually when you read that and smell the butter at the same time, it's pretty well bang on.

Argan+ Ultra-Rich Body Butter


I think the packaging could be more luxurious - it's very plasticy which is a shame for a lovely product.  Not that I generally buy a product for its packaging, but it's not the sort of tub you would willingly leave out on your dressing table because it's also a thing of beauty!  However, overall I've enjoyed using this body butter - I'm not usually a body butter sort of person (I usually lean towards a normal moisturiser), so I can't really say how it compares to other body butters (though from my memory of Body Shop body butters, I would say this is smoother and more easily absorbed).  

Argan+ Ultra-Rich Body Butter is available from Waitrose, Boots and Feelunique.com for £8.99/300ml tub.

*PR Sample

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Makeup Revolution Review

Makeup Revolution Review

There's a newcomer to the high street make-up scene which I'm sure you've heard about by now: Makeup Revolution.  Everyone seems to be talking about it at the moment and the reviews have been so good.  The most surprising thing about all the offerings from this new brand is the price - which is so very bank-balance-friendly that you'll be doing the Ikea thing of 'oh, I'll just have that, and that, and that' before you realise you've spent £40 when you only went in for just that one eyeshadow.  Oopsy.

As soon as I started reading the reviews, I knew I had to jump on the bandwagon and try them out for myself.  I chose two eyeshadow palettes - the Iconic 3 and the Awesome Eyeshadow and Eyebrow Palette in Disappear Till Tomorrow - and a Vivid Baked Highlighter in Peach Lights.

Iconic 3 Eyeshadow Palette (£4)

Makeup Revolution Eyeshadow Palette Iconic 3

Makeup Revolution Eyeshadow Palette Iconic 3 Swatch

One of the products I was most excited about when I started reading about Makeup Revolution was this palette - the Iconic 3 - which for those of you who are cult beauty addicts may recognise as being remarkably similar to a certain Urban Decay Naked 3 palette.  The UD one is one I don't own (I own the first two, but felt I didn't really need Naked 3 at the moment) so I can't do a side-by-side comparison, but from what I've seen, they are very similar.  Sadly Makeup Revolution don't name their shades like UD do, but for the unbelievable price I'll let this slide.  The packaging does feel a little flimsy - I'm going to be quite careful not to drop this as I don't think it'll be shatterproof.  Inside the palette there's a two-ended applicator which is a nice touch, but probably isn't something I'll use, preferring to apply eyeshadow with a brush.  There's a gorgeous range of pinky-hued matte and shimmer shadows in this palette which can be blended together to create a lovely pinky smoky look.  The shadows apply smoothly and have longevity in their wear.  I was pleased to discover that there was no creasing at all and they really stayed put throughout the course of the day.

Disappear Till Tomorrow Eyeshadow and Eyebrow Palette (£4)

Makeup Revolution Disappear Till Tomorrow Eyeshadow Palette Review

Makeup Revolution Disappear Till Tomorrow Eyeshadow Palette Swatch

This Disappear Till Tomorrow palette wasn't one I had read anything about prior to seeing it on the Makeup Revolution website, but I thought it looked like an ideal take-away sized palette which would be easy enough to pop into any weekend bag or even daytime handbag.  It's much smaller than the Iconic 3, which does mean that the pans of shadow are a little on the small side for picking up with a brush, but it's not too much of a problem.  Again the consistency of the shadows was smooth and easy to apply and blend.  I was really impressed with the pigment of these shadows, too (the swatches above really didn't take more than one quick swipe with my finger).  In this palette there's a range of brown and neutral shadows, with more shimmer than matte.  It also has a couple of eyebrow pans (which I haven't tried out yet).  Despite the really very flimsy packaging (even more so than the Iconic 3), I know this is going to be a favourite summer go-to for me, especially as when I go away in the summer to Africa I'm not going to be taking much make up with me.

Vivid Baked Highlighter - Peach Lights (£3)

Makeup Revolution Vivid Baked Highlighter Peach Lights

Makeup Revolution Vivid Baked Highlighter Peach Lights Swatch

The last of the three items I'm reviewing is the Baked Highlighter in Peach Lights.  It's a very subtle creamy pinky peach colour which I thought would be lovely at this time of year when I want to add a little shimmer to my cheekbones.  It applies well with a brush - though I have to swish it around a few times to get as much colour as I would like.  It isn't too bright on my skin, which means that it just helps to pick up the light without clashing with my blusher.  It's a really decent sized highlighter and the packaging is more substantial than the eyeshadow palettes.

Overall - I, like everybody else, am very pleasantly surprised and impressed by the excellent quality of these products which are just so very affordable.  A mere £11 for all three of these I've reviewed in this post is incredible value - I know I will be heading back to buy lots more in future.

You can find Makeup Revolution on their website: www.makeuprevolutionstore.com and soon I think they'll be available in Superdrug stores (dangerous for lunchtimes!)

So - the exciting part - due to a little error on Makeup Revolution's part, I actually received my order twice... and they very kindly said that rather than returning it or paying for it, that I could use it for a giveaway on my blog!  So that's what I'm going to do... you can win all three of the items above in a little bundle (which is already pre-bubblewrapped) just by entering using the Rafflecopter widget below.  This is my first giveaway, which I'm pretty excited about.  I was planning to do one when I hit 1000 followers on Instagram and so this coincided rather nicely... all that leaves to be said is - GOOD LUCK!!!

How to enter:
- Log into the Rafflecopter widget below either with Facebook or your email address
- You must like Fundamentally Flawless on Facebook (if you already do, you need to put in your name on Facebook) - this is the only mandatory task.
- To get more entries, you can follow me on other social media platforms, as well as comment on this blog post.
- You can get one entry per day by Tweeting about the giveaway.
- Tweet me (@fundaflawless) if you've got any questions!
- You must be 18 years or over (for data protection reasons) and live in the UK to enter (because it's my first giveaway, I'm testing the water!)



Giveaway T&Cs:
  • The closing date is Friday 23rd May 2014 at 23.59 (GMT).
  • One (1) winner will win: one (1) Makeup Revolution Iconic 3 Palette, one (1) Makeup Revolution Eyeshadow and Eyebrow 'Disappear Till Tomorrow' Palette and one (1) Vivid Baked Highlighter in Peach Lights.
  • Open to UK residents aged 18 or over (sorry international readers!) - and only one entry per household (although the link to the giveaway may be tweeted each day).
  • To take part, leave a comment on the blog telling me which item you would most like to win and why.
  • Entrants must log in via Rafflecopter and like Fundamentally Flawless on Facebook – this is the ONLY mandatory task. You can gain extra entries in the draw by following me on Twitter, tweeting a link to the giveaway, following my blog on Pinterest, BlogLovin, Instagram, Tumblr, Google+ and commenting on this post.
  • The winner will be chosen at random from all correct entries, via Rafflecopter, and informed via email within 7 days of the closing date.  The winner must respond within 14 days to claim their prize.  The prize will be despatched by Royal Mail Special Delivery within ten working days of receiving the winner’s address details.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

NEW Models Own Microdots 'Glitter' Topper Review

Models Own Microdots

Whilst I was at Westfield White City yesterday I had to pay a visit to the Models Own Bottleshop to see the lovely Models Own girls - Ellie, Aisha and Nara.  They all looked after me so well, as usual!  As well as a bit of a gossip and nail-related chat they told me that a brand-spanking-new polish had been released on Saturday in the form of a glitter topper and it's called Microdots which is quite a cute name.  Obviously I had to buy a bottle just so I could try it out (and swatch it!)

Models Own Microdots

Models Own Microdots contains little hex glitters in red, royal blue, aqua blue, peach and pale yellow all in a clear base.  I say glitter, but they're not shiny, they're matte - so are they still called glitter?  I'll be honest, it's a little bit of a random mix of colours I think.  But it's nice to see Models Own giving a nod to all the indie polish makers around, who create polish like this already (TarasTalsons springs to mind, for example).  The 'glitter' needed a bit of arranging on the nail - and I thought it was most effective with just one coat, rather than two which just looked messy.  The polish took a bit of a while to dry, but with a quick dry top coat it solved the problem.

I tried it over Models Own Banana Split (baby yellow), Models Own Blueberry Tart (baby blue) and Models Own Hypergel White Light to see which it worked best over... and I think it probably looks best over white - but it would probably look good over black too actually.

Models Own Microdots Swatch GlossyModels Own Microdots Swatch Matte
Left -  with glossy top coat (No 7 Stay Perfect), Right - with matte top coat (Rimmel Matte Pro)

I wasn't sure about it with the glossy top coat, but after I tried a matte top coat I loved it - I think this is definitely a glitter which works well being matte (since it's not actually glittery to start with).  Which do you prefer?

Models Own Microdots Swatch

Overall?  A really fun top coat to make a mani a bit more interesting.  Admittedly, if I wasn't a nail blogger I probably wouldn't have bought it.  I'm not a massive fan of this sort of topcoat, I would usually prefer to go for some sort of nail art - but this is definitely a quick way of spicing up a plain polish and I actually love the matte look I went for in the end.

Models Own Microdots is currently only available at the Models Own Bottleshops, priced £5.

Monday, 5 May 2014

Rainbow Diamonds and Dots Nail Art with Models Own Hypergels


Since it's Monday, I can't help but posting what I can probably say is one of my favourite manis to date.  I posted a tutorial for this design on Instagram on Saturday, so if you follow me there you may already have seen it.  I think the final design looks more complicated than it actually was to create.

I used mainly Models Own HyperGel polishes - the base was White Light, then in order of pale yellow to green, it was Graffiti Nails Mellow, 17 Go Go, Models Own Summer Solstice, Models Own Sundress, Models Own Purple Glaze, Models Own Blue Glint and Models Own Turquoise Gloss.


The dotty nails were very straightforward - I just used the dotting tools from the Models Own Nail Art Tool Kit*.  The diamond nails were a little more complicated.  I used the striping tape, also from the nail art tool kit, to do diagonal stripes one way, then diagonal stripes the other way.  I painted in the diamonds with the small paintbrush from the kit and then removed the tape with tweezers straightaway - if you don't do it straightaway the polish peels up.  I topped all the nails with Seche Vite.

Models Own Summer Solstice Rainbow Diamonds and Dots Nail ArtModels Own Purple Glaze Rainbow Diamonds and Dots Nail Art

Rainbow Diamonds and Dots Nail Art with Models Own HyperGels

If you don't already follow me on Instagram, why don't you hop over there now - @fundaflawless?  I've been posting quite a few video tutorials recently and it's where I put manis that don't make it onto the blog!

What do you think of this design?  Let me know in the comments below!

*PR sample