Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Mattifying Primer - How they rated!

If like me you are forever (and I mean FOREVER) searching for your ideal mattifying primer - I thought I would give you the low down on three recent primer purchases to help you make your decision,
I have three different brands to talk to you about... Firstly, L'Oreal and their Infallible Mattifying Base, then Benefit's brand new launch which is part of their POREfessional range - Matte Rescue and lastly the Make Up For Ever,Step 1 Skin Equalizer Mattifying Primer.

So let's get to it.

L'Oreal Infallible Mattifying Base
Availability: Nationwide, Boots, Superdrug, Supermarkets, Online
Retail: £7.99

Instantly transforms skin texture, resulting in a matte finish and velvet soft touch.
Prepares and smoothes skin by minimising imperfections, pores and shine. Mattifying effect- Instantly transforms skins texture for an even surface with velvet-soft touch. Foundation glides seamlessly across it.

How Does It Perform?
The texture of this primer reminds me of the classic Smashbox Photoready primer - silicone like - the coverage is great, a small amount goes a long way and the finish creates a great base for your foundation. But does it really mattify your skin? Hmm not completely, not for the entire day anyway. I find that I still get my oily T zone and by around mid day I have a not so delightful sheen on my forehead. That said it does perform better when you use in conjunction with the Infallible foundation.

Overall Verdict?
For £7.99 this is a great primer and I have re-purchased it a few times based on the price and how conveniently I can pick it up - which is pretty much anywhere. That said, I would like it to keep my skin matte for a little longer.


Benefit POREfessional - Matte Rescue
Availability: Nationwide, Selected Boots Stores, Debenhams, House of Fraser, John Lewis, Online
Retail: £21.50

Matte rescue instantly minimizes pore appearance. The lightweight, water-based gel overpowers shine and absorbs excess surface oil, leaving a natural-looking matte finish. Skin feels smooth and refreshed.

How Does It Perform?
This product has more of a gel like formula as opposed to the Silicone based one above, slightly more viscose, It also has a blue tint to it which is invisible once applied. This product has a greater mattifying effect compared with the L'Oreal one. You feel it instantly on your skin. Whilst it does smooth pores slightly it doesn't have the same effect as the usual POREfessional - so if you are particularly worried about your pores you will need both. My skin definately stays shine free for longer with this product and my foundation doesn't seem to slide as much.

Overall Verdict?
I am a big fan of this primer - the product itself works great and I love the cooling effect it has on my skin when it is applied. I cant help but think, as with the majority of Benefit products that if the packaging wasn't as elaborate the price could be trimmed slightly but I guess it's part of the whole fun of Benfit.


Make Up For Ever - Step 1 Skin Equalizer - Mattifying Primer
Availability: Debenhams Online or Selected Stores 
Retail: £24.00 (30ml) or £13.00 (15ml)

MATTIFYING PRIMER is the answer to unwanted shine, fighting against excess oil to ensure a matte makeup result. Formulated with our specific Sebustop Vegetal Complex, this first step equalizer instantly reduces pore size and controls shine for a flawless makeup all day long.

How Does It Perform?
I was so disappointed with this product - especially considering the cost. Another frustrating thing was the packaging, the product was too thick to come out of the tube so you really had to squeeze it out. It also doesn't spread as easily as the other two so more of the product was required. Again, if pores are a big issue for you - you would need an additional product to fill those in. I've used this one more in concentration around my T-zone as opposed to all over my face but again it falls short of the standard I have come to expect from other Make Up For Ever products.

Overall Verdict?
Unfortunately, really not worth the price tag, which is a shame cause I had high hopes. 


So the Winner? ** Drum Roll**

This one goes to Benefit's POREfessional Matte Rescue

Have you tried any of these primers? What are your thoughts?

Rhian Xx

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Urban Decay Cardiff - Naked Smoky Launch

It's fair to say I have been off the blog boil for far too long. Sometimes things just get in the way and unfortunately at the moment these things happen far to often... Despite the time lapse I am keen to tell you about another Urban Decay product launch and master class that I attended. 

This time it was for the Naked Smoky palette launch. 

If you've not tried the palette yet then you definitely need to give the girls and guys at the Urban Decay counter in Cardiff, Debenhams a shout as its one of my favourite palettes and some shades have quickly become my favourites. 

If you've not attended a master class here either it's definitely worth a try as you get to engage with all the make up artists, get great hints and tips and generally find out more about the products you're buying. 

The master classes are usually headed by the wonderful Haddie who is the account manager. 

I've just realised this was August 6th! So I am defo waaaay behind the curve. But in my defence I've used it a lot and I've had two holidays since then and this was the only palette I took away! 

Some of my favourite shades are:
Dirtysweet - the golden colour you can see in the shot above. 
Whiskey - a matte, warm reddish brown
Thirteen - a matte, pinky white. Great for highlighting. 

Obviously I indulged in more than just the palette that evening but one of the benefits of that was lots of goodies to try out. 

Over the last three years Urban Decay has rocketed to becoming my favourite cosmetics brand and the counters make overs are definitely ones I would recommend. 

The above was a look that Haddie created for me using the Naked Smoky palette. 
You can call the counter on 02920381525 to book make overs and find out more about events. 

Rhian Xx


You know the moment you decide to put your hair up half way through the day because it's in the way? Then later when you decide you want to leave it down again.... But can't. Because that nasty elastic bobble has left a massive kink in your hair? 
Well.... Welcome to a product revolution!                 

The Invisibobble has many benefits. 

1. Due to the telephone cable like design the bobble applies uneven pressure to your hair meaning that your hair won't kink. 
2. It doesn't soak up any water... So when swimming it can easily be removed and added back to dry hair without leaving that awful wet ring across your ponytail. 
3. Firm grip. No matter how thick or fine your hair is. 

The Invisibobble also claims to help prevent split ends and headaches which are generally caused by the tension in your bobble and you having it in so tight. 

I picked mine up from Sephora in Paris but you can now get them in the UK for around £4 for a pack of 3. 

loved mine and even picked some up for my friend before I come home. 

Available in loads of colours and also you can create great hair styles with them too. 
Check out the link. http://www.invisibobble.com/denise-bredtmann/ 

Thumbs up from me! 

Rhian Xx

Aussie Miracle Dry Shampoo

Now.... if you haven't yet heard of or tried dry shampoo you must have been living under a rock for the last 5-7 years. I'm sure plenty of you will correct me and say it's been around longer or that the idea of applying talc to your hair to dry it out has been around for donkeys years! But I would estimate that it was 5-7 years ago that I first found the wonder that is dry shampoo! 

Since then it's fair to say that the dry shampoo market has gone craaaazy! With pretty much all brands now offering one.

As my hair is fine, I do suffer from greasy roots - so for me dry shampoo is a life saver - my first bottle was a Lee Stafford one and I think I ended up paying around £5-6 for it! Them I found out there was this wonderful green bottle called Batiste (there was only one type back then) and it was only £1.99!!

I saw the Aussie one on offer recently and so decided to give it a go, especially as my next "dry shampoo day" is never too far away!

This is a tricky one for me.... I am going to tell you my verdict before I tell you about the product. The reason!? I am not sure that I love it as much as I should. For that reason I am going to break it down to a simple pro's and con's list. 


Smells lovely
Doesn't leave a heavy chalky residue
I am able to leave my hair down once I've used it rather than having to put it up
Doesn't dry hair out


I feel as though I have to use more than I would traditionally to get rid of the oil

Now. I know what you're thinking there's a few more pro's there than there is con's and that's because this is a lovely product. But is it cost effective? Having to use more for the same purpose? I'm not convinced. So I'm sticking to my Batiste for every standard dry shampoo day where I throw my hair back in a bobble and keeping the Aussie for refreshing styles and adding volume. 

Aussie is available in most supermarkets and stores like Boots and Superdrug. But I would keep an eye out for when it's on offer before making a purchase. 

What's your favourite dry shampoo?

Rhian x

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Hair Extensions....

Hair is a funny old thing. 
People are never happy with their own. I think that's partly because celebrities create this false reality that hair can be perfect every day. 
I'm well aware that mine isn't and I'm sure they are privy to countless blow dries and extensions to make their tresses look amazing everyday. 

For many years I've toyed with the idea of extensions... It's an expensive habit and so had never felt comfortable or willing to commit to getting some. Instead I picked up some beauty works hair pieces and it's these that made me commit to having extensions. I had gotten to the point that I couldn't bear a selfie without the additional hair which had given me more confidence. But it want natural and they were synthetic and so with time and wear they become tatty. They are also not suitable for every day wear. 

I googled every which kind of extension.. I googled places to have them.. What was recommended for my hair but I had never plucked up the courage to take my fine, thin head of hair in to a salon to have a consultation. 
That was until I met Nicola while having my hair cut at Studio 15. 
I mention this Salon a lot. And that's because it's friendly, approachable and for anyone with any insecurities you can feel completely at ease here. 
Nicola has been doing Hair Extensions for over 5 years. So has a lot of experience. 

We talked through what look we wanted. How many we would put in... And where. 
It was more thickness that I wanted do I had them cut just an inch longer than my actual hair. 
I had around 60 extensions applied - I went for the pre bonded option. 
It's key to point out that Nicola only uses top quality human hair. 
It is AAAA Remy Hair. 

Now... Let's be clear here. I didn't have extensions to look like a mermaid.. Or Disney princess. I had them to make me feel better about myself. My hair was thin, putting it bluntly it was crap. I was finding myself getting fed up and just putting it up in a bobble as I wasn't happy with how it looked. 
Nicola, and my hair extensions have made me feel completely different about my hair and myself. I now enjoy styling my hair... And wearing it down. The bonds are hardly noticeable and I'm constantly told how natural it looks. 

Consultations for hair extensions with Nicola are free and are available at Studio 15. Prices vary and so a consultation is needed. 

I had mine done in early July. I've not lost one extension as yet and it's now the middle of September. 
I couldn't be more pleased. I am looking to move to Nano Rings next month when I have them refreshed but I've been happy with my bonds - don't get me wrong at the start it feels incredibly bizarre but after a few washes they feel like your own hair. 

I urge anyone who feels like I did about their hair or even anyone looking for extensions in general to contact Nicola. 

Here's a few pics of her work so you can see for yourself. 

To book a consultation with Nicki call Studio 15 on 01443 315151

If you have any questions please ask

Rhian Xx