13 June 2018

Dia daoibh!
So today's post is one from the vault!.... Well, that's a bit dramatic; perhaps six months ago! I came across a memory card I thought I had lost and found lots of products images I had ready for review on my blog. So, rather than letting them go to waste, I will share the products (that are all still available now) here. First up are up close pictures of the, sell-out, SoSu Hot Fire Palette.
Suzanne Jackson is one of Ireland's biggest beauty bloggers and beauty business women and this was her first eye shadow palette launch.  It retails for €29.95 and is available in pharmacies nationwide.  The palette itself is made from a sturdy board so it's not too heavy and I was delighted to see that it included a large mirror in the lid - always a plus.
The palette contains 12 eye shadows - 8 mattes and 4 shimmers, ranging from pale creams and champagnes to warm apricots and deep chocolate browns.  Here's a list of the colours:
.  Naked - Pale, matte cream
Heat - Soft pale peach
Spark - Rich warm brown
Ignite - Matte sandy ochre
Embers - Warm apricot
Pot of Gold - Burnished metallic gold
Iced - Shimmering buttermilk
Blaze - Metallic taupe
Flame - Shimmering copper
Depth - Matte cocoa
Copperlight - Warm chestnut
Smoked - Deep chocolate
Most of the shadows have great colour payoff and are quite pigmented with the exception of the darker shades surprisingly. These work better under the lash line rather than over the lid as I found them separating otherwise. Some of the eyeshadows do have a bit of fall out but most of them stay surprisingly pigmented.  The palette is Paraben Free, Cruelty Free and Vegan Friendly
Like I mentioned, the palette is still available from SoSue's website and from pharmacies nationwide. To buy online click >HERE< to get it for just €23.96 or >HERE< for €27.50 from Cloud10Beauty.


10 April 2018

Dia daoibh!

So today, it's back to skincare.  In general, my skin is typically "normal" but at times it can sometimes feel quite dehydrated.  I had ran out of my previous moisturiser so I popped into my local Lloyds Pharmacy and saw these Eucerin ones on sale.  Initially, I just bought the night time one, but was so impressed, I returned to buy the day time moisturiser and lip balm also. Here's a round up of of each.
Eucerin is a German brand founded by a pharmacist, so all products in the brand are scientifically & clinically tested & proven.  They have a range of products, but the line I purchased all contain... wait for it!..... urea! Ring any bells? You might recognise this word as being pee BUT fear not, there are different types of urea, and the one used in skincare, isn't actually urine, as it's made from a synthetic sources! Phew!! 

The sciency bit!!

Urea exists in all body fluids & tissues & is an important part of skin's natural moisturising factor. In many dry skin conditions, natural urea levels are reduced, leading to further moisture loss. By replenishing this active ingredient, urea effectively relieves itching &skin dryness. Unlike many other skincare "miracles", once applied to the skin, it doesn't just lay on top. It actually penetrates & is absorbed so that it can retain water &then increases the capacity of the skin to hold moisture and rehydrate.
The day time Eucerin face moisturiser isn't overly thick, so it works well under my make up, but still gives me enough moisture so that any dry patches are concealed.

The night time version, however, is  different story.  I was really impressed with this one.  It's much more rich & a lot thicker in consistency - something that I love in an evening moisturiser as I feel it seeps into the skin as I sleep. When I woke up the next morning, my skin was noticeably softer & felt really hydrated and smooth. 
I'm a big matte liquid lipstick lover, so I apply lip balm every single night before bed to keep my lips moisturised,  This one is also nicely thick &a little goes a long way. I tend to get cracked lips at the corners of my mouth & this worked a treat at easing the sting.
In the above image, you can see the consistency of each product.  From left to right, starting with the night moisturiser you will notice it is much thicker than the 2nd daytime moisturiser, with the last lip balm being more of a gel balm.  Overall I'm thoroughly impressed.


As an added bonus, Eucerin products won't break the bank:

Eucerin Smoothing Face Cream 5% Urea - €9-€10 (currently buy 1 get 1 half price in Boots >HERE< or get it for 25% off on Feel Unique >HERE<)

Eucerin Smoothing Night Creme 5% Urea €10-€11 (but still €6.69 in Lloyds at the moment >HERE<)

Eucerin Intensive  Lip Balm - €7 from SamMcCauleys >HERE< (€4.50 currently out of stock on Inish Pharmacy >HERE< but keep an eye out as it's the lowest price I've seen).


13 March 2018

Dia daoibh!
So I posted a sneak peek of the newly launched Luna By Lisa Liquid Eyeshadows to my Instagram and Facebook and you voted YES to a review, so let's get started!!
If you're new to Luna by Lisa Jordan, let me tell you a little about her.  Otherwise known as "Just Jordan", Lisa Jordan is a professional makeup artist and fashion & image consultant from Cork City.  She launched her beauty line ''Luna by Lisa" last September.  So far she has brought out a Lip Gloss collection, a leave in miracle hair treatment and her newest venture is with her liquid eyeshadows, which is what we will be taking a look at today.  

Described as a "Liquid Pigment for everyone" the two liquid eyeshadows come together in one set priced at €25 - shades Rose Quartz and Midnight Onyx.  On first impression, I was a bit apprehensive as to how chunky the glitter looked in them, but nonetheless, I caved and picked them up!
MIDNIGHT ONYX is described as "A smoky midnight grey embellished with silver glitter, this sultry shade is perfect for adding drama to your look. Easy to wear and apply, Midnight Onyx will soon become your go-to shade for after dark".
ROSE QUARTZ is described as a "soft rose liquid pigment enhanced with ultimate shine and showstopping sparkle. An adaptable shade that works with any eye colour – wear Rose Quartz and shine bright every day.
Surprisingly, once I swatched the liquid eyeshadows they didn't feel as grainy as I had thought they might and the glitter was super sparkly.  These wouldn't be for a day to day look - more so for nights out! In the image above you can see that the liquid eyeshadows can be applied directly from the doe foot applicator (blend with a brush or your finger once it's on the lid) to work on their own, or layered over an eyeshadow. 
The silver sparkles in Midnight Onyx did seem more chunky than the gold sparkles in Rose Quartz which blended down more evenly.  In certain lights, Midnight Onyx did look a little on the green side than the black/grey but this will depend on whether you apply it over a shadow or not.  Rose Quartz is definitely my favourite out of the two (sidenote: it's not rose gold in colour..... just gold!)

One word of advise though.  Don't layer this product, as it will break up. For testing purposes I applied one layer, then went in to see if I could add a second to intensify it.  Once it's dried on the lid, leave it be. Otherwise you'll end up with something like this!!
I have to say, I was a bit dubious to begin with because they are quite sparkly but.... I do like them.  I think in particular they will suit people who find glitter/powder pigments too difficult or messy to work with.  These liquid piments will add lots of glitz to your eye look in seconds and for that, they are quite unique.  

The Liquid Eyeshadows were released into pharmacies nationwide last week. So far they are available online from the >Luna website<  >Meaghers Pharmacy< and >SamMcCauley< websites.  


18 February 2018

Dia daoibh!
So, today I wanted to share with you, details of an exciting charity event that will be taking place in April that I think a lot of you will be interested in. As many of you know from my >Instagram<, I get my nails done in >The Nail Sanctuary< in Charleville and owner, Kelly Marie Daly together with >Claire Treacy< - Award Winning Make Up Artist and Niamh Webb O’Rourke – >Love Life< Fashion Blogger are putting the event together as I type!  Here are the details for "The Whole Shebang"!
The charity event will be a girly (males welcome also of course!) day of skin care, tanning & make up demos, talks on awareness & info on topics such as anxiety, autism, mindfulness, nutrition, motivation, beauty, blogging and more! There will be lots of guest speakers, bloggers & surprises on the day. It will be an afternoon for you to doll up, treat yourself, love, laugh, sit back & relax. From afternoon tea to prosecco on arrival and some great giveaways, the pampering will never stop!
The Whole Shebang event is being held from 12-5pm on the 8th of April at >The Charleville Park Hotel< in celebration of The Nail Sanctuary’s 10th year in business.  All proceeds of the event will be in aid of Pieta House, Milford Hospice, St. Joseph’s Foundation and the Neonatal Unit of The Maternity Hospital, Limerick.
I'm very excited to confirm that the event will be M.C’d by my sister Dawn along with Dale of Gogglebox Ireland!!! The duo are gas, if I do say so myself and as I'm sure any of you Gogglebox fans will know, so lots of giggles will be had!
Demos and guest speakers on the day will include Bloggers, Fitness Experts, Authors, Skincare Specialists, Makeup Artists, Mental Health and Learning Difficulty Specialists and more.
There will be lots of spot prizes on the day too from – Revas Spa, Leanun, Sanctuary Beauty Salon, Ballymaloe, BPerfect, dinner vouchers, hair vouchers so keep an eye out!  Of course there will be pop up stands galore to tempt you including – Horizon Designs, Joe Brown Ireland, Rebeluna Cosmetics, BPerfect Cosmetics, Fuschia MakeUp, 808 Donuts and more! 

Edit 25/02/18 - even more spot prizes and pop up stands have been added to the list such as Mrs. Pebbles, Pebble Art, Glowing Girlies Boutique, Carmel Pilates, Shoe Rack, Stella & Dot Stylist Louise Brassil Leahy, Doctor Mahers, Barrons Supplements and many more will all be there on the day!!
Tickets are priced at €50, with all proceeds going to Pieta House, Milford Hospice, St. Joseph’s Foundation and Neonatal Unit Limerick, so not only will you be treating yourself, you can feel good about supporting and contributing funds to these local charities.  Tickets will be available from 10am on Monday week, the 26th of February from >Eventbrite<.  There will also be a link to donate online if you cannot attend on the day but would like to support.
I will be there on the day and will be sure to share as much of the event as possible on social media.  If you want to keep track of added prizes, stands and other details, make sure to keep an eye on the The Whole Shebang Facebook event page >HERE< or the Nail Sanctuary Facebook page >HERE<.

Will I be seeing you there!!?


10 January 2018

Dia daoibh!
If you follow me on >Snapchat< or >Instagram Stories< you will know that I have been suffering from dehydration - my lips are cracked, my skin is tight and my body is, in general, lacking in the H2O department (I blame the Christmas and New Year celebrations....).  I've been using the Bioderma Hydrabio Mask and wanted to share my thoughts as there are not as many masks available for dry or dehydrated skin as there is for say the likes of oily or blemish prone skin. Here we go.
So, first up; the claims.  Bioderma state that the Hydrabio Mask provides deep-down, long-lasting moisture during periods of extreme dehydration. Second on the list of ingredients is Glycerin (also known as "glycerol" if you want to keep an eye out for it when you're buying a new skincare product) - an ingredient that attracts water to your skin from the air around you and locks it into the skin. It's a skincare ingredient that is compatible with all skin types and people of all ages so I was delighted to see it was high up in the list of the Hydrabio Mask.  Although the mask does contain fragrance, there is no offensive smell (barely detectable in fact) and thankful didn't seem to have a negative effect on my skin.
It is advised to use the mask daily for the first week and then as often as you need it after that.  It's advised to be used regularly at the beginning so that something called the "Aquagenium biological complex" can re-train the skin to generate the hydration essential to its natural balance and to lock it in on its surface..... Now I don't know about all that.  In my opinion just whack it on for a few goes in a row and see how your skin is feeling after that.
Personally, the mask reacted very well with my skin.  Please keep in mind that skincare will work differently on my skin than yours so don't take this as me swearing that it will work for you!!  It left my skin feel super soft and looked and felt plumped and thankfully it eased the tight feeling of my skin..  It's advised to apply a thick layer and leave on for 10 minutes.  The thing about this mask is that is doesn't "set" or harden on the skin.  The consistency of the mask is a mix between a lotion and a cream so it stays feeling moisturised whilst on the skin.  It basically just looks like a moisturiser that isn't fully rubbed in yet!
You can remove any excess with a cotton pad.  Personally, most of the mask actually absorbed into my skin (I'm tellin ya.... dehydration central over here!!) but after about 2 weeks of using it on and off there has been a bit left over afterwards.  In the application instructions it says to remove any excess product with a cotton pad but I really didn't like this as it seemed to go bitty on my skin which I hope you can see in the image above. If I do want to remove it completely from my skin, I wipe it off with a warm facecloth and moisturise after.  The mask is non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic so is suitable for those with sensitive skin also.
The Bioderma Hydrabio Masque is priced at a quite reasonable €13 and is available in most pharmacies nationwide.  You can buy online from >Cloud10Beauty<


The above product was sent to me from the brand's PR team for reviewing purposes. All opinions above are completely my own, 100% honest thoughts on the product.

06 January 2018

Dia daoibh.
Today is Women's Little Christmas (not "Little Women's" Christmas - if you're going to celebrate, don't beLITTLE yourself!! #PetPeeve!). So yeah,  a day of celebrating women, to acknowledge and appreciate all of the hard work they have put in over the Christmas period - cooking the dinner, cleaning the house, wrapping the gifts etc.  Traditionally, the men gave the women the day off and they took over the housework and the woman of the house could have a day of rest or celebrate with her fellow hardworking and exhausted female friends.  
It's more of a big deal this year because 2018 marks the 100 year anniversary since Irish women were given the right to vote.   Celebrity Big Brother this year has historically opened up with an all-female cast, something that's never been done before.  In mid 2018 the huge vote regarding the removal of the Eighth Amendment from the Irish Constitution will take place; another huge women's rights issue.
Anyway..... it's all getting a bit deep here.  My point is,  this year and today is a day for celebrating women. And what are a vast amount of female Irish social media users focusing on today...... the newly created instagram page "bullshitcallerouter".  
The page was set up this week and basically is a profile dedicated to comparing (shaming? you decide) before and after pics of popular Irish Bloggers and influencers.  Calling them out on photoshopping their photos. This has always been an issue in the online beauty community and people have very different views on the matter. I'm here to share mine.
There's a difference between filtering your photo and photoshopping it.  I make no qualms in saying that I filter 90% of my instagram photos, mainly for lighting reasons.  Let's face it, Ireland doesn't have the best natural light so Clarendon is my go to.  If I happen to take a selfie, which isn't actually that regularly if you look at my Insta, I again usually use the Clarendon filter which sometimes can make my skin look clearer or my eyes look bluer/greener. Also, if I do take a selfie of my make up or whatever the case may be, I stand in front of my ringlight, which instantly makes the picture and me as a person in real life, look better.  Is that me "editing the bejaysus" out of myself?  Everyone will have their own views, but I personally know you can see the picture clearer and I look better in it so obviously I want to use it over the original. 
Where the issue is, it seems, is when women (I haven't seen  mention of a man yet.... *eyeroll) alter the size and shape of their body. There doesn't seem to be too much of  an issue with people editing out a spot or whitening their teeth etc. but it's when it comes to the shape of a woman's body, fellow women are up in arms about it.  At the centre of the "controversy" are Suzanne Jackson, Rosie Connolly and Joanne Larby.  Some of the before and after pictures are gas.  I mean gas as in one pic looks as if it was taken back in the 90s and then the after is from last week. Hardly fair eh bullshitcallerouter!?  People NATURALLY change over time, their hair, their body, their eyebrows, their makeup technique.  Then people change with the help of cosmetology - veneers, lash extensions, boob jobs, wigs.  That's ok too.  
I get that people are mainly pissed with Joanne Larby A.K.A. The Make Up Fairy because some of the full body shots posted of her taken by someone else vs one she has taken of herself on the same day, do look quite different.  It's an issue for people because Joanne has documented her lifestyle change and fitness journey in depth on her blog and social media and people take it as her being a liar about her progress, about how she really looks.  Others have said they feel left down.  This has me torn.  If MUF inspired you with her words and blog posts to get up off your ass and lose weight or get fit then isn't that a positive thing?  You have changed your life for the better because of her.  If she has insecurities about herself and feels the urge to virtually nip and tuck herself, that shouldn't affect your self esteem.  Of course, then there’s the business aspect. Joanne is not just a blogger, she’s a business woman. Blogging and social media pay her bills so therein lies the problem in my opinion. For example, where she alters images of her body in a paid/sponsored post, that has left a sour taste in a lot of women’s mouths, causing people to accuse her of “false advertising”. Again, I’m a bit torn here as Joanne isn’t selling her body, she’s advertising the fitness clothes. Whether she looks “fat” or “fit” won’t make a difference as to how the clothes will look on you. People do need to be aware that editing is EVERYWHERE these days, be it in the papers, magazine, tv or blogs; however I think the ASAI need to enforce regulations when it comes to this as not everyone is au fait with this as I am, so I guess this is something bloggers and I myself need to keep in mind. I’m not saying people editing their bodies is ok, I just know it’s been happening for a long time. I can’t stop it, I can only control my own actions and choose not to participate. There’s nothing legally stopping bloggers from editing their pictures. It’s their property. 

Lots of others have come to Joanne’s defence regarding lighting and angles and I totally agree with this.  I've seen it myself first hand with my own photo's vs the same night someone else has taken.  See exhibit a and b below.....
I know my angles, I can make myself look a size 10 despite having crept back up to a size 14 over the last few months (*eyeroll).  I know the angles thing isn't the answer here but it is a huge factor that I think people need to take into consideration.  Also, editing works both ways.... can make you look better or make you look worse. Some images posted online of bloggers have been edited to make them look worse. Keep that in mind too. 
On the other hand, I have seen other photo's of her (the one in the green dress in particular) where both photos were taken head on, so no angle excuse can be used.  It's clear her waist line is different in each pic.  Does that effect my day to day life?  No. I still think she's a lovely girl who wasn't 100% happy with the way she looked, so she altered it. She’s wasn’t advertising anything in the post so it was a personal blogger picture so she can do what she wants with it.  It's not like she put her hand on the bible and swore to us she didn't edit it.  It's not like as if she edited the photo to be 7 stone lighter.  It's not like as if she's horsing McDonalds into her every day. It's obvious that she's working on her physical appearance and perhaps she was having a low self esteem day & did it to get through the day.  Who knows. Does she regret editing her photos? I don't know.  Are the disgusting, unnecessary over the top comments getting her down today on a day of celebrating women? Most probably. If you're one of those people leaving nasty comments, do you feel better?  Have you left a positive vibe for other females to take with them? Doubtful.  Maybe she's a complete liar and I'm being "fooled" (into what, I don't know.... it doesn't make a difference to me what she weighs).  It doesn't excuse the way some other women are spitefully reacting.  Do women just want to see shit selfies of others? It's not going to happen, you and I will take multiple photos and put up the most flattering one.  There may not be a need to photoshop the image and I do get why people feel let down, but that's an issue for the uploader.  It's their issue/insecurity, not yours.  

I felt the need to write this post because some people are being absolutely completely over the top and cruel about it. This post is more so about the feedback from the public of the actions of the bloggers as opposed to the actions/editing topic itself. Just look at some of the below comments.

It's the reaction from other women that has saddened me rather than a blogger editing their pictures.  It angers me more when people buy followers, rather that earning them.  It frustrates me when people are sent items free of charge to review  but don't actually properly try them out or give an honest opinion, they just simply rehash the press release.  It pisses me off when bloggers are paid to say good things about a product that they don't use or believe in.  All these things, to me, are deception.  A woman cinching her waist or adding seagulls to a photo, isn't enough for me to lose faith in the power that is womanhood.  
Regarding people being disappointed in these women as role models to their kids or nieces etc...... step up to the mark.  You be their role model.  Teach them the way YOU think things or people should be. Don't leave it up to a woman you don't know from the internet.  Lead by example instead of criticism.

To make it clear, I don't necessarily agree with the extent some bloggers have gone to to make themselves look thinner, more muscular, more tanned, prettier etc.....  it's more so the tone of the backlash that I find so upsetting. Yes, we need to teach the younger generation to be comfortable in their own bodies, but this won't happen by attacking someone you dislike. Like I said, lead by example and if you happen to be a new blogger reading this, stay true to yourself.  You won't have to worry about being called out on in the future!

I do hope that all women out there learn to love the body they have and not edit as much to the point of it becoming an issue to their followers.  All opinions welcome in the comments below or on my social media. 


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