I Try Before You Buy: Maybelline New York, Bourjois, Garnier, Skinceuticals, Origins

Rather a mixed bag this week! It’s all very face-y, though, so there is something of a defining principle.

MAYBELLINE NEW YORK The Nudes Eyeshadow Palette, €14.99
*****
This is seriously amazing. The range covers everything from day to night, and is organised so that you can easily pair them {use a top hue with the one directly beneath it, and 01 MAYBELLINEthere’s your duo} or even quad them. I decided to give it a try as I was going to be out all day working in an office, and when I got home, it was as if no time had passed. this is like Back To The Future for your eyelids… or something time-travelly like that. From matte to shimmer, this has got you covered, and I was so seriously impressed by its staying power — without eyelid primer! — that I can’t recommend this enough. This is also perfect for those among us who fear attempting the black smokey eye at home. You can get as sexy a result with shades of brown!

BOURJOIS PARIS 12hr Aqua Blush, €12.49
***
The less powder on the face during a heatwave the better, but do you really need a blusher when rosiness in the cheeks is reaching critical 04 BOURJOISmass? I’m loving this addition to the Bourjois line, and yes, it’s nice to add a pop of colour, especially this lightweight wash — there’s a big difference between a heat flush and blush! Dispensing it is tricky as a full pump is enough for three faces; I’ve fine-tuned an action to a 1/4 of a pump that manages to release the tiniest dab, which still gives good coverage. Wait until your foundation is fully set, though, otherwise this tends to melt it a bit and move it around. Comes in Ingenude, CocoRicorial, Pink Twice and Berry Nice {self-explanatory, I would think.}

GARNIER PureActive Matte Control Anti-Shine03 GARNIER Anti-Blemish Moisturiser, €14.99
***
I wasn’t really sure what this was trying to be: is just a moisturiser, or is it a primer, too? That anti-shine element felt like it applied to the latter, but my first usage felt like it was falling down on the side of moisturising — that is, I used way too much. This too is a great thing for the days of heat, if you can call them to mind at all: a little bit goes a long way under a BB cream, allowing for some blurred lines but not blocked pores, and for your BB to stay in place. Still, I wasn’t overly wowed, due to its neither-here-nor-there texture.

04 SKINCEUTICALSSKINCEUTICALS AOX Lip Complex, €40
****
A restorative concentrate for damaged/ageing lips, this is a creme, which created a moment of cognitive dissonance; it is also a pump, which created a moment of ‘How much of this product am I going to waste?’ I’ve tried lip creams in the past, and the texture has always given me the shivers; here, though, it absorbs at just the correct speed, so it’s not like there’s this gross layer of goop on your mouth. I am not cray about the pump, and I don’t think this will make it into my handbag, but I’ve got it to hand at the keyboard, and I’ve been going to it for the last week. In fact, I’ve just popped some on because I was trying out a lippy that was so drying it was all I could do to actually get it off my mouth. This is replenishing much needed moisture, even as I type. This is perfect for an intensive treatment that’s a treat!

ORIGINS Original Skin Re05 ORIGINStexturizing Mask with Rose Clay, €35
*****
Clay? Yay! I love a good clay mask! This is practically an express mask, it dries so quickly — and yet, it does not dry out the skin. When removing, the addition of water turns it into a gentle exfoliation experience. I was worried about the beads that were so clearly acting as the exfoliating agent, but upon research have discovered that they are jojoba beads and are biodegradable, which I take to mean that they will disintegrate naturally and not poison our planet. This now shares room in my heart with their Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask — oh, and their Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask! I am in love with Origin masks, clearly.

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Dr Rescue to the… Rescue

I make no secret of the fact that my nails are manky: my nail beds are shallow, my cuticles grow like weeds, and now that splitting has entered to repertoire, they are simply hopeless. Can this new line of nail product from Maybelline make a difference?
DR RESCUE balm
I love the idea of a ‘lip’ balm for my cuticles and SOS Balm Nail + Cuticle Care is new one on me, and the promise to moisture brittle nails is one that I’m going to hold it to.
DR RESCUE the balm
The actual application is slightly awkward given the flat surface, which doesn’t glide as well as it ought. Applying some to a finger and transferring it to another finger is a fair enough solution, if slightly messy. After one round, though, my cuticles were shiny with health, so that makes up for the awk.
DR RESCUE all in one
There is a separate Gel Effect Base Coat which provides the look of lacquer and a CC Top Coat which helps to whiten and brighten the nails, but if I can do something All-In-One, that is always going to be my choice. This is a base, top and treatment and it’s the way I’m going to go.

At €5.99 for each, you can DIY your manicure for about the same price as you would in salon, if not cheaper. We’ll see how my manky nails and I get on!

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I Try Before You Buy: Comb v Brush Mascara

The battle is on. In my own head, at least. I remember being afraid of the first spiky-ended mascara applicator I encountered, fearing putting said spikes anywhere near my eye balls. Now? They are my favourite mascara-conveying device.

On the other hand, there were a couple of new, and new-to-me mascaras that I wanted to try, but came with brushes at the business end. Would they sway me back to the old fashioned mode of application.

Em: no.

SPIKY applicators
MAYBELLINE NEW YORK Lash Sensation Lash Multiplying Mascara {€12.99} is my fave at ***** and it is to this I turn when I want super spiky, perfectly defined lashes. Everybody asks me if I’ve had extensions when I wear this. Use a primer beneath and just knock it out of the park.

CLINIQUE High Lengths Mascara {€21.50} and RIMMEL LONDON Scandaleyes XX-Treme {€8.99} both get ****. The Clinique applicator has a helpful curve, and low-level spikes for those who still have the fear. I find that I need to get as much on in the first round as possible, because the second round gets very, very clumpy. The Rimmel is a close second the Maybelline, but I’m not finding it to be as dependable. It’s the bargain of the lot, though, and if Boots are having a 3-for-1 Rimmel sale (not that I know of, just pondering) then go for it.

BRUSHY applicators
All of these are **, sad to report. CHARLOTTE TILBURY Full Fat Lashes 5 Star Mascara {€29} disappointed me in the extreme because I actually bought it with my own money (gasp!) The counter woman, who applied it over my existing mascara, very generously gave me a flicky eyeliner treatment as well; I suspect this was cover up the fact that the mascara got allll over my eyelids, even though it was professionally applied. Same goes for the ELIZABETH ARDEN Beautiful Color Maximum Volume Mascara {€26} and the YVES SAINT LAURENT Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils {€31}: no matter how slowly I went, nor how far back I tipped my head (really far), the mascara made a mess of my lids.

I will be sticking with the comb, thanks!

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Snap! Judgement: Maybelline New York Master Graphic Eyeliner

The most basic criteria as regards choosing a Snap! Judgement object is that it has to make me express myself verbally almost on contact. So I knew this was a goer when I drew a wee line on my hand and went ‘OH YEAH!’
SNAP! MASTER GRAPHIC
Maybelline New York presents Master Graphic Eyeliner. Graphic designer-y types will recognise its similarity — rightly, given the ‘graphic’ in the title — to a Sharpie, surely the best marker pen ever invented. Going back even further into The Wayback Machine, there was a brand of chisel-tipped markers that smelled completely and deliciously toxic and had black and white branding… ach, can’t remember the name*, but the rich opacity of that black was spectac.

This black looks pretty spectac, too, and yet it feels light as a feather. Will this give me the perfect eye line?

Once again, I scupper the whole point of this category of post.
MASTER GRAPHIC in the wild
I was a tiny bit wimpy, and only did a thin line close to the lash, but this went on without me making all the usual mistakes. It flowed just like a magic marker, and lasted for about seven hours in high winds and rain (srlsy.) I may play around with it, to get more of a Cleopatra vibe — I have confidence that I can manage it, and that it will last and last!

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€8.29

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*HEY INTERNET YOU HAVE NO PICTURES OF THIS THING? #FAIL

Tried & Tested @ The Herald: Foundation

This week, I worked with several different brand’s foundations. How’d they do? Here’s the link!

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HELLO! WOW!Speaking of which, I recently revisited BeneFit’s Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow Brightening Foundation. I hadn’t liked it a’atall when I first tried it, but now? I love it loads! Will get back to ye with a proper review, but I mention it as a case, which happens occasionally, in which I revisited a product and liked it better. Pro Tip™: using a foundation brush really, truly does make a dif. A true life case of ‘do what I say, not what I do,’ unfortch — I even remember the brand’s lead make up artist, LIsa Eldridge, showing us at the launch that using a brush is best. Tcha! Have I finally learned my lesson?!? Stay tuned…

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Brow Round Up Over at The Herald

My Tried & Tested Column seems to be making a regular appearance these days over at herald.ie, which is great news for those who’d like a quick blast of info as regards a weekly category of beauty and skincare products!

This week: brow enhancing make up. See here, m’dears!

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If you’d like to mooch around the archives over there, best to search ‘Sue Conley’…

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The Eyes Have It! And Boy, Do They Need It: New Fave Mascaras

Just for the sake of argument, here’s my naked lashes.
BYE BYE EYELASH EXTs 2

And so:

CLARINS Length & Curve Mascara, €26
They look pretty clumpy in the first photo, which they really weren’t. The second image shows them to better advantage. That is Intense Brown, which you may not have thought. They look nice and black to me!
CLARINS 3
CLARINS 1

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RIMMEL LONDON Scandaleyes Retro Glam, €8.99
So fake looking, in the best possible sense!
RIMMEL 1
RIMMEL 3

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BOURJOIS Volume Clubbing Blackjack Mascara, €10.49
I heart this a lot because it is so seriously thickening.
BOURJOIS 1
BOURJOIS 2

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LANCÔME Hypnôse Doll Lashes Mascara, €28
We’ve seen this one before; in this case, I only had time to do one coat, and I think it looks pretty substantial.
LANCOME doll eyes

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Finally, here’s a reminder about the Electric Blue stuff via Maybelline Colossal Color Shock Mascara, €10.75; I wore it out into the world, and it was noticeable in ‘Ohh, like yer blue lashes’ way.
MAYBELLINE COLOR SHOCK 1

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Finally, finally, a shot I like to call Daft Noir Selfie.
DAFT NOIR SELFIE
I am especially proud of the daft shadow of my phone, and my hands holding it.

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