Makeup is not Beauty

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I’ve recently been listening to some of my friends say: “I hate people who wear mascara. Makeup isn’t what makes you beautiful.” And I was just thinking that, well, I agree. Makeup does not make you beautiful. I will now direct you to a post on Schmirfle Blogs.  Come back here when you have read it. You may also want to see what I already have said on this topic here.

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I hope that if you are reading this then you have followed my instructions. If not, then follow them. They’re important. If you have, then congratulations. Let’s get onto the point.

Although makeup does not make you beautiful, that isn’t the only reason people wear it. Makeup isn’t just to make you ‘pretty’ or ‘confident’ or whatever. It’s just makeup. It’s like drawing, or painting or sketching. Except on your face, and you wear it around. Although makeup can be vain, it can also be creative and fun. Makeup isn’t just for people obsessed with what they look like, and don’t judge people by it.

It’s just makeup.

Makeup Revolution Eyeshadow Review

I recently went to my aunt’s fiftieth birthday party so I took the  opportunity to make some new purchases (one of which is this purple eyeshadow). Anyway, I haven’t done a review in ages so I thought I’d give you all my thoughts on it.

Makeup revolution purple heaven eyeshadow

 

Makeup Revolution seems to be, effectively, a rebranded version of MUA. Same philosophy, similar products, same cheap price – even the packaging looks the same!

MUA & Makeup Revolution packaging comparison - similar or no?!?
MUA & Makeup Revolution packaging comparison – similar or no?!?
Swatches: with Nivea Express Hydration Primer on the right, alone on the left
Swatches: with Nivea Express Hydration Primer on the right, alone on the left

 

Anyway, this shade is called Purple Heaven so I was expecting it to be a plain purple but it’s actually more of a shimmery-blue-purple-3D-effect colour, if you know what. I mean (which you probably don’t). It doesn’t show up that well swatched as it isn’t a particularly intense colour, as you can see, but it looks nice on the eye. I applied it in a wash and then put a bit more on the outer third of the lid which worked nicely as a highlight thing.

Considering this was £1 from Superdrug, I’d say that it was excellent for the price!

NYC Sky Rise Mascara

This was another surprisingly good yet cheap buy (it is just £1.99 from Superdrug). I’m not sure if it’s beachside my lack of experience therefore more generous reviews or extensive (cough, cough) internet research that I like to do before I buy anything, but this has proved to be another nice mascara.

Nyc sky rise mascara

The brush (wand?) looks a bit odd with its swirls but it doesn’t work that differently to a normal brush. What I love about it is that the stick part of the wand – you’ll have to excuse the names that I am giving all the parts – is that it’s longer than usual so it is a lot more comfortable to reach both the lower and upper lashes.

Nyc sky rise mascara hand and brush    NCAA sky rise mascara brush

The formula flakes and smudges a little on application but it seems to last well after that; there’s always something passable at the end of the day. It gives length (as suggested) but not much volume. It gives your lashes that spider-leg look after a couple of applications.

I would buy this mascara again. The good product and awesome price has won me over. I would rate it 4/5.

Is it Spring-like where you are? The weather’s not to good over here, sadly. Still, I have the holidays to look forward to!

Apple xx

Is Makeup Vain?

Considering that I blog most of the time about ‘beauty’ (of the face/skin/makeup kind) I thought I’d share my thoughts on something that has been crossing my mind recently…

Is makeup, the thing I blog about, vain?

If you look up the single word ‘vain’ up on Google, then you’ll get this:

having or showing an excessively high opinion of one’s appearance, abilities, or worth.’

Well, to get this straight, I don’t think that about myself. Still, makeup is in effect a thing that only changes what people see on the outside. Isn’t that a bit stupid? And old fashioned?

Basically, yes.

Then why do I blog about it?

Although there is a part of makeup that is like art and you can express your emotions, I don’t have the experience or money to do that kind if stuff. All in all, I share tips for cheap and easy makeup.

I don’t really feel like I should  have good reasons. We’re not supposed to judge books by their covers and take appearances to seriously etc. etc, which I definitely agree with, but somehow, against everything, I enjoy writing about beauty.

That is my reason for blogging about beauty: I love it. What about you? What do you think? Is that reason enough?

If you have any opinions about this topic then I’d love it if you commented below (I’m sometimes too scared so don’t be) or emailed me at j.applesmail@gmail.com

I’ll be seeing you all again soon,

Apple xx

Easiest Ever Contour

There are a lot of guides out there about contouring. Some are helpful, some less so. This one, like pretty much all my guides, aims to describe contouring in the easiest and simplest way. This time, with drawings, yay!

Contour = putting light and dark in various places to draw attention to parts of your face/eye/whatever. The light is usually a higher and the dark a bronzer. Sometimes the darker one will be called a ‘contour’ and the lighter a ‘highlight’, but I just use the word contour for both.

Approximately the cheekbone area
Approximately the cheekbone area

When you contour your face, the usual thing you want to focus on is cheekbones: apply highlight just on or above your cheekbones, and ideally the bronzer just below. You can find where to apply bronzer by sucking in your cheeks to make a fish face! Finding your cheekbones is a bit harder, because you actually have to feel for them. They’re usually in a diagonal-ish line going out from the bottom of your nose (they stick out a bit so you may want to use your fingers to find them, like I said earlier). You can also bronze around the sides of your forehead and nose as illustrated in the picture. (I’ve always wanted to say that).

And highlighting? After you highlight your cheekbones, highlight on your ‘expression lines’ so: around your mouth and nose. Then, highlight under and over your eyebrows to make them stand out a bit more (if you want)  and in the corners of your eyes, which will make you look more ‘awake’. This can be a good light alternative to under eye concealer, especially if you’re just us using a light concealer as your highlighter.

My not very good drawing skills present a contour diagram
My not very good drawing skills present a scary contour diagram

This isn’t really eye contouring, but a nice neutral eyeshadow is to do a wash of a shade similar or slightly lighter than your skin tone, then put a lighter one in the inner corner and a darker one on the outer edge.

Do you need to do it all? It’s up to you. Personally, I don’t do the whole lot every time because it’s a bit of a drag, but I…how do I put this? I’m not morning girl. I like to sleep. Thus, I end up with not much time. The same may not be true for you!

Valentine’s day is coming up, so although I won’t be participating in the whole give-a-card-then-let-someone-accidentally-find-out-and-tell-the-recipient tradition that is currently in operation at our school (or will I?) I am feeling the vibes. Happiness! Cute things! Hearts! Chocolate! What about you guys? What are your experiences and plans for this year’s Valentine’s?

On a side note, I don’t think I’ve ever explained my use of the term ‘guys’. I usually use it to mean the people around me, not just boys. In this case, that’s you, the readers.

I’ll be seeing you around soon,

Apple xx

Fashion vs Beauty

Which do I prefer? Fashion, or beauty? Hmm. This post will consist of pros, cons, ramblings and such (as usual). And, one twelfth of the way to Christmas is almost complete. It is totally normal to start counting down to Christmas in January, by the way!

Why Fashion is Awesomer than Beauty:

Clothes (and shoes, accessories etc.) last a lot longer than any potions or makeup, unless you grow fast.
Clothes (and all the rest) don’t run out.
Clothes can be mixed, matched and revamped a lot easier than makeup.
Fashion is two thirds of the look. Beauty is only a third, and confidence is the extra quarter. Of course, your character is way more important, but I’m not going to dissect characteristics into fractions.
You can buy vintage clothes, but never vintage make up.
You can wear a party dress without makeup to a party, but wearing party makeup with normal clothes can be an everyday look.

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Reasons why Beauty is Awesomer than Fashion:

It’s on the whole cheaper. I would spend £20 on a jumper, but not on eyeshadow.
It’s easier to ‘express yourself’.
You change clothes every day, but you don’t change faces as often.
You can pamper yourselves with face masks and stuff, but you can’t really do that with fashion.
You can recreate a look you’ve read about by buying the same products; it’s harder to buy the same clothes as that girl in the photo. They might even not sell them any more.

And what do I think? It’s hard. I think I like writing and thinking about beauty more than fashion, but clothes are more important. Not that I’m particularly knowledgable about fashion. But, it’s a close call – it’s so annoying when someone says they can’t decide, though, so I didn’t want to leave you hanging.

I hope your January is going well!

Apple xx

What I’ve Been Using: Nivea Soft Moisturiser

For a long time, I didn’t use moisturiser because I thought that it made my skin get all oily and break out (I have yet to convince my mum that it is not, in fact, absolutely evilest evil evil). If you’ve had a similiar experience, then problem here doesn’t lie in the fact that you’re moisturising, but more likely in that you’re using the wrong thing. Or maybe that your hands are really dirty. It could be either.

Nivea soft

Let me start off by saying that I do not believe it is necessary to spend over £20 on a moisturiser. If you want to, then by all means go ahead and do, but it’s not completely necessary. There are perfectly decent ones you can buy for a whole lot cheaper.

Now, a while ago I wrote a review on Simple’s Light Hydrating moisturiser saying it was nice, but it started to break me out so I’m now using Nivea Soft (I should probably change that review). I think the Nivea was about £2.75 for a 75ml tube, and you can get it from Boots or Superdrug, though they probably sell it elsewhere. Nivea isn’t exactly obscure. Anyway, it dies a good job of moisturising my skin if it gets too dry. Often I get dry patches around spots where I apply gel cream, and it works pretty well in them, too. It doesn’t break me out and is basically all round good. Yay!

Well, I’ll see you around, folks. If you’ve bought Nivea Soft as well then I’d love to know what you think.

Apple xx

EcoTools Brushes: First Impressions

Today I got a lovely surprise when I came in: the makeup brushes that I had ordered from ebay just over two weeks ago had arrived!

Ecotools

These were dead on time (the delivery could have taken another two weeks) so I am very pleased. Although, of course, there’s always a chance that stuff from eBay and sites like that could be fake, but since something like a thousand people had already bought these I thought they were okay. The only different thing is that the bag has a button rather than a zip, but from the label this set seems to be from quit a long time ago. I’m guessing they changed it? Anyway, all the brushes seem very soft and good quality for an astonishing price of £3.75 (I may have got that slightly off, sorry!). My favourite is the adorably small baby kabuki. I haven’t seen one before, so didn’t know what to expect, but it’s just SO CUTE! I have no idea how a brush can be cute, but it is.

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Anyways, I’ll give you an update on how these brushes are performing once I get down to using them properly. For now, I’ll sign off, and I’ll see you all (metaphorically, I guess) next time around!

Apple xx

Can’t Find the Perfect Blush?

Finding the perfect blusher is one seriously hard task. If you’re having a hard time finding it, then layer your blush for a look that’s more tailored to your skin tone, mood and clothes. For some reason, I really enjoy picking out my blush in the morning. I just like blush. A lot!

If you have a lot of similar shades, then branch out. The ‘main’ different shades are: apricot, cool pink, dusky rose, almond and plum. There’s obviously a lot of variation, but that’s pretty much it. Try and find some shades in a colour that leans more towards one of those. It may look a little ‘off’ on its own, but it will work out, I promise.

Blush
Please excuse my use of an old photo; the tablet I usually use to take photos isn’t working!

Assign one, or maybe more, shades for daily use, then group the rest into ‘darker’ and ‘lighter’. Apply a -pale? thin? No, light – wash of an everyday blush, then apply a darker one towards the higher part of the cheekbone, out towards the edge of your face, and then apply a lighter blush on your cheekbone. Of course, you don’t have to do both of them everyday; you don’t have to layer them everyday at all (especially if you’re in a rush). Alternatively, blend two colours in the same way to give a pink a hint of orange, or an apricot some light rose. It’s easy to change you routine if your skin tone –  although it’s always good to buy more blush. Well, perhaps not strictly good: fun would be a more appropriate word.

As a note: to find what colours suit you, you need to find your undertone. There are plenty of other ways to find out if you search for it on the web, but the simplest way is often to look at the veins on your wrist. If they’re green, you’re warm toned, if they’re blue, you’re fool toned and if they’re a mix then you’re neutral toned. If you’re having difficulty telling, like I did, then ask someone else (or even a couple of people). They may or may not think you are going crazy.

Blue Monday, the supposed most depressing day of the year, is coming up in the third week of January. It hasn’t done so before, but this year it feels very apt. I don’t think the rainy weather is helping, either. It’s funny, but I do actually feel a lot better when the weather is nice. How about you?

Apple xx

 

Cheap ‘n’ Cheerful Drugstore Reviews #1

I don’t feel like reviews are at the top of my list for things to blog about, but, especially after Christmas, I have a lot of things to get down and review! If you noticed the ‘#1’ in the title, then I am indeed planning to do a second set of reviews that will be leaning into the bath/skincare/lip balm category. Or categories. The products I’ll be reviewing are MUA blusher, Witch Anti-Blemish BB Cream, Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer and Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed powder.

Anyway, first up is two MUA blushers in the shades Bon Bon and Cupcake (£1 each).

Bon Bon, top; Cupcake, bottom
Bon Bon, top; Cupcake, bottom

The packaging looks nice, but it’s not particularly sturdy. Having said that, I dropped one on the floor and it didn’t crack at all. Personally, packaging isnt really a big issue for me unless it’s really bad or it’s really good. I do get tempted by nice packaging.

Bon Bon
Bon Bon

Bon Bon is a dusky rose shade more suited to medium skin tones (it didn’t suit my pale complexion very well!) but I like layering it with other blush if I’m in the mood. I think I could wear it as a more everyday blush when I’m a bit tanned. Still, it’s a beautiful shade with good pigmentation. The lasting power is okay; if you want it to last a long time then you should use a good primer.

Cupcake
Cupcake

Cupcake is more of a light-pink-brown-jack-of-all-trades shade. It isn’t as dark as Bon Bon, so I use it as an everyday blush. Because of it’s colour, the it doesn’t show up as much (or maybe it just doesn’t have as good pigmentation) so if you’re in a rush and accidentally apply a bit too much it doesn’t look so bad. This shade is more suited to lighter skin tones.

Overall, these are both a great steal at just £1 each: you pick them up in Superdrug or off the MUA website.

Next is Witch’s Anti-Blemish BB Cream (£4.99).

Witch BB cream

This only comes in one shade, which is such a shame. The bottle says it ‘cares for all skin tones’ but it will really only suit those with light-but-not-that-light skin. That’s the specific name, by the way.

The packaging is good; nothing special. This BB cream provides actually quite good coverage for what it is. Although BB creams are meant to be all in one foundations, anyone who has tried (a Western) one knows that they don’t give as good coverage as most foundations. I don’t like to wear foundations that much, so this gave a good amount without looking too cakey. One thing that I have learnt, though, is that you have to beld it in quickly or else you can see the blend marks. I haven’t seen any spectacular results from the Witch Hazel, which is supposed to have anti-blemish properties. I do use a lot of other products, though, and there are so many other factors that it’s hard to tell. On the bright side, this BB cream certainly doesn’t clog my pores or cause any pimples.

Witch bb cream swatch

The lasting power is nothing more or nothing less than expected; maybe something like 5 or 6 hours before it starts wearing? It’s honestly quite hard to tell.

If you’re willing to overlook the shade problem, which is really the only bad thing about Witch’s BB Cream, then this is a great product for when you want a bit less coverage. I’d buy it again. Witch’s Anti Blemish BB Cream is available from Superdrg for £4.99.

These concealers are well known in the beauty blogging world: Collection (2000) Lasting Perfection Concealer in both Fair & Light (£4.19 each).

1 Fair, standing; 2 Light, below
1 Fair, standing; 2 Light, below

You’ve probably heard of these ‘miracle’ concealers. They give great coverage, amazing long-lasting wear and they’re just £4.19 from Superdrug. There are only four shades: Fair, Light, Medium and Deep, so, like me, you may have to buy two and then mix. I feel like Fair would suit very light skin tones, whilst Deep probably isn’t as deep as its name suggests.

1 Fair, left; 2 Light, right
1 Fair, left; 2 Light, right

A lot of people say that the writing on the tube rubs off easily: I have experienced no such problems, so perhaps they have changed it slightly? They have a doe foot applicator which is fine, though it makes it hard to get the last drips and drabs of product out. This concealer has a fairly thick and heavy formula with medium to full coverage. It’s doesn’t have a yellow or green tone to it which can cancel out dark circles or redness respectively; it’s just ‘skin’ toned. This doesn’t bother me that much, since it’s such a good concealer. I reckon you could use it over larger areas if you needed to, a bit like a foundation (after all, it would only be £8 for a tube of foundation if it came in the usualy foundation amount, 30ml).

I do like this concealer. I don’t feel like it’s a miracle, but it’s certainly great for the price – you can buy it for £4.19 from either Boots or Superdrug.

Finally, I have my first impressions of Rimmel’s Stay Matte Pressed Powder in Peach Glow (£3.99)

Rimmel stay matte

This is another favourite among many people; it gives the 5 hours of matte-ness (well, anti-shine) that the packaging says and all shades except for transucent give some coverage. I tried to swatch it but it didn’t show up, sadly.

Rimmel stay matte finger swatch

The packaging is okay and feels pretty sturdy. It doesn’t come with any sort of applicator, though they’re usually pretty bad so I’m not particularly bothered. It doesn’t give a lot of coverage but does give a natural matte look for up to 5 hours, depending on how oily your skin is (I have comination skin: an oily t-zone but normal to dry everywhere else). So far, this hasn’t given me any skin problems so I like it. Plus, it comes with a very nice price tag of just £3.99 from either Boots or Superdrug.

Well, that’s it from me, folks! I hope you’ve all got off to a great start in January.

Apple xx