Topshop Spring Summer 2014 – Grunge Sticks

If like me, you still have regrets on having missed out on limited edition eye crayons like the CHANEL Stylo eye shadows and the Topshop eye crayons Mystical and Ramble… (*moment of silence*) then you’ll be as excited as I was to see the Grunge Sticks in Topshop’s latest Spring Summer collection.


Unkempt (top) is a charcoal black with fine silver shimmer and Go-Go (bottom) is a shimmery sea foam green and at £7 are nice dupes for the CHANEL Stylo eye shadows in Black Stream in Jade Shore.  Like the CHANEL ones there is a slight cooling sensation on application to the skin.  Both have a creamy consistency, have good pigment and blend very nicely without much fallout (just a *tiny* bit on Go-Go).

See swatches below compared to other black and shimmery green cream shadows:


MAC Paint Pot in Blackground, CHANEL Illusion d’Ombre in Mirifique, By Terry Ombre Blackstar in Black Pearl, Topshop Grunge Stick in Unkempt, Topshop Grunge Stick in Go-Go, CHANEL Illusion d’Ombre in Epatant

Here are the Grunge Sticks used at the Topshop Unique London Fashion Week runway show (images from


NARS Matte Multiples – Laos, Siam and Exumas

I practically skipped into my nearest Space NK today after reading that the new NARS Matte Multiples are now instore.  After repeatedly swatching, cleansing and then swatching again in a different order I decided on Laos, Siam and Exumas.  I couldn’t decide between Altai and Vientiane so I left with neither.  Both looked quite warm (much warmer than NARS Laguna and Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder) and unflattering on my pallid winter skin.  I vow to give them another try in summer as Altai was originally at the top of my list!


Laos (right) is a rosy pink with a hint of plum.  I had a very light base on today and I found it brought out some of the redness in my face.  I’m not normally a fan on plum blushes for this reason but I will try it with a fuller coverage foundation next time.

Siam (middle) is a very pigmented hibiscus red and is my first foray into red blush.  It is very scary.  Especially that first swipe.  I’m not completely sold on it as blush on my warm light-medium skin but I suspect that it’s due to my lack on finesse with such a pigmented product.  Tapped onto lips as a stain however, Siam is as gorgeous as you would expect.  Not as striking as a bold matte lip but tapping a couple of layers will give you that pop of colour.  I will have to try it with a lip brush at some point!

Exumas (left) is a coral pink nude and is my pick out of the three.  It’s pigmented, blends nicely and brightens the face.  I can see myself wearing this as an everyday blush or dialled up by popping it on top of contoured cheeks.

Here is Exumas swatched with other coral pinks


NARS Boys Don’t Cry blush/Chanel Rouge Allure in La Favorite/NARS Exumas/MAC Vegas Volt/MAC Watch Me Simmer/MAC Ablaze

Here is Siam swatched with other orange reds


NARS Siam/MAC Dangerous/MAC Lady Danger/NARS Red Square/NARS Heatwave/Hourglass Liquid Lipstick Muse

The empties that keep on giving – Diptyque

There must be something I’m missing because I can’t seem to see joy in empty shampoo or body lotion containers.  I buy them, use them, throw them out and buy the same if I loved it or buy another if I didn’t.


Now a Diptyque candle is another case entirely.  They burn evenly down the bottom of the glass jar (not burning a hole in the centre like some candles do) leaving pretty much just a thin layer of wax and the base of the wick when the light goes out.

You would be wrong in thinking that using up a much loved candle would be a cause for dismay. For one it means that you now have an excuse to buy ANOTHER candle, or in my case I now have an excuse to light the Feuille de Lavande I had waiting in my stash (gorgeous by the way!).  Secondly, the jar becomes home to anything that takes my fancy.  In this case, my NARS Velvet Matte and Satin Lip Pencils which have been rolling around in my drawer.


I’ll leave it up to your imagination but take notes from the inspiring Sabrina’s The Beauty Look Book where she uses them to store anything from paperclips to cotton buds!

Heads up! Clinique Cheek Pops and NARS Matte Multiples

Heads up for those waiting for some spring goodies to drop in the UK!


Is anyone else is stalking their Space NK for the new NARS matte multiples?  I’m itching to get my hands on Exumas, Siam and Altai.  They’re now available to pre-order from Space NK Online and will be available for dispatch on Tuesday 25 March. I’m guessing this means they’ll be in-store then too – the stalking continues…

And the Clinique Cheek Pops are now available on

Harvey Nichols Beauty Gift starts today!

If all you need is a little nudge to splash out on a huge haul this may just do the trick.  Spend £135 or more in-store on online on beauty, skincare or fragrance and you’ll be going home with these goodies!

My counter picks at Harvey Nichols:

  • Tom Ford
  • Burberry
  • Serge Lutens

They also have Space NK and Beauty MART.

Chanel Les 4 Ombres 2014 – Tisse Ventien and Tisse Gabrielle

If someone had been watching me browse around Boots yesterday they would have wondered what could have turned my relaxed, almost bored demeanour into a fit of frantic panic/excitement/joy/indecision.  If they had bothered to ask, the incoherent response would play out like a charity song collaboration with several big name voices trying to out-sing each other (think “We are the World”, “That’s what friends are for”, etc).  This particular song features:

  • She Loves Praline (me)
  • Impulsive Praline (my impulsive and excitable side)
  • Sensible Praline (my sensible side)

Omg the new Chanel eye shadows are out! (they’re out?!  how can that be?  I haven’t seen many reviews or tutorials on them yet!  I thought they weren’t out until … OMG it’s March!!!)  Oh they look gorgeous *paws them* (I have to have them now – I want them but which ones?! *recalls drool worthy promo pics of Tisse Ventien*  I want them all!!!!) Excuse me, these are the new quads right?  How much are they?  £40?

[Enter Sensible Praline]: I only have 10 minutes until I have to start making my way to dinner.  Better wait until I can look up swatches and reviews so I know which one to get.  And anyway Debenhams are doing 10% off all Beauty this week and likely John Lewis are doing a price match

[CUE random bumps, crashes, tears, screams, punches and shouting]

I’ll take Tisse Ventien and Tisse Gabrielle thanks.  Oh the Le Volume mascara now comes in Waterproof? (Le Volume my favourite mascara ever!  It comes in Khaki?!) Yes please I’ll have one of those too.

chanel-les-ombres-232-tisse-gabrielleChanel Les 4 Ombres in Tisse Gabrielle – taupe, ivory, deep plum and smokey purple shades


Chanel Les 4 Ombres in Tisse Ventien – teal green, icy pink, emerald shimmer and a complex seafoam shimmer

Here they are swatched on my tanned arm (just back from a beach holiday) – I’m probably NC35 at the moment (usually NC30).  The shadows are pigmented and buttery soft – no powderiness and the product picks up a little like mineral eye shadows.  They also feel much softer than the regular EU baked quads and I can’t wait to take them for a spin tonight!


The Winter Dark Red Lip

So it’s that time of the year again. The sun starts going down at about 3.30pm so instead of a day-to-night look I could probably get away with just wearing a night look from breakfast.

My most recent inspiration is the recent Louis Vuitton campaign with Michelle Williams (*drool*). Unfortunately, even a frantic search yielded no results on what lipstick Stephane Marais used on the shoot but I’ve got a couple that hopefully come close.

(Image from WWD website)

dark-red-lip-topshop-velvet-0The newest kid on the matte liquid lipstick block is Topshop with their Velvet Lips range. At £10 it’s pricier than Rimmel Apocalips but at least it does feel like the quality is better. Velveteen Ribbon worn sheerly is a medium-dark red and can get to quite a dark blood-red with more layers.

Most mattes are drying on me (except the Givenchy Le Rouge formula which must be made of magic) and this is no exception – I can actually feel a tightening of the product on my lips as it dries.

You can find Topshop Velvet Lips in store, online and as part of Cult Beauty’s Get the Look “The Damned” Collection.


Here it is swatched with some of my other dark reds – my favourites being Chanel Dragon, NARS Mascate and DIOR Diorling.


(L-R): Chanel Dragon, Topshop Velvet Lips in Velveteen Ribbon, Hourglass Liquid Lipstick in Icon, Hourglass Femme Rouge in Icon, NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Majella, NARS Pure Matte Lipstick in Mascate, DIOR Diorific lipstick in Diorling