Brassy / Orange Hair – At Home Toner – Wella Professional Color Fresh Silver pH6.5

Last September I decided to get a new look and treat my hair to a brown Balayage. I chose the Balayage technique as hair maintenance is not my strong point – just the thought of having to deal with ‘root touch ups’ exhausts me. I loved the initial results and decided to do whatever I could to preserve the look. I reduced washing my hair to just once a week, used cold water only and stocked up on blue shampoo. To my horror, the brassy orange tones started to surface after a couple of months. Here is an picture of the freshly Balayaged hair (left obviously)…

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Above on the right, is my hair after 5 months…brassy, orange and the obvious overgrown roots. I was conscious of my hair colour but tried to ignore it as much as possible, purely to save money. The moment came when I could no longer ignore the absolute disastrous hair situation, when I went to an event and took a whole load of pictures. I came back completely cringing at the orange locks I was donning.

The length of my hair doesn’t help because it just means I have to pay double the price for hair treatments. Still keen to save money, I decided to try a bit of DIY and purchased the ‘Wella Color Fresh Semi Permanent Hair Toner – pH 6.5 Silver‘ costing £13. I chose this violet shade to neutralise the brass whilst maintaining the highlights (note; a brown toner can also lessen the orange look but would just do so by darkening the hair). I followed the instructions which were very easy to follow. The 75ml toner was just about enough for all my hair – so plenty! Once evenly distributed, I left the toner on for around 10-15mins (recommended 5-20mins).

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On the right is the results post – toner. You can certainly see an improvement! and it was a fairly easy and cheap process. To be honest I am pleased with the results and will probably continue to tone at least once a month, in order to build up the ashy tones. I am also keen to try a blue toner as this is known to be more effective for orange hair. I will let you guys know how that goes, so stay tuned.

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My First Hair Dying Experience – Subtle Red Balayage

Being a hair dye virgin, I must admit, I have always found the prospect of getting the foil and bleach out a little daunting. Every time the thought crossed my mind, questions like, ‘will my hair get damaged?’ or ‘what if it looks horrendous??’ circled my brain until I eventually convinced myself it just was not for me. To be completely honest, my experience with hair dye of any sort, was pretty much limited to a bi-monthly chore of box dying my dad’s greys with a toothbrush.

Having minimally tinkered with my hair since birth, I recently had an unexpected moment of spontaneity and decided to take the plunge. Actually, it wasn’t completely spontaneous—I was inspired by my sister Jas—she has a lot of greys and seems to be going for the Cruella de Vil look lately (sorry Jas!). Anyway I was her guinea pig, and she too, will soon be getting hers done!

Right, first and foremost, my sister and I were a little obsessed with finding the perfect salon. We wanted a place with good hair reviews at affordable prices. Some salons offer hiked up prices in exchange for extras such as a glass of champagne on arrival. For us, this just sounded like unnecessary kerfuffle so we stayed clear of these options, seeking rather the skill and ability for our money. Having very long, thick hair, we needed an accommodating place that was willing to take on the challenge—some were not so keen . Trawling the internet, luckily we stumbled upon a cosy hair salon tucked away in West Hampstead called Crystalise Salon. This place had everything we were after, highly skilled staff, with creative vision and a genuine passion for what they do (not to mention great prices & discounts)—perfect.

The day of the appointment arrived. I felt mixed emotions. A little apprehensive about this decision, it was now or never and I knew I could not back out. Equally, the rebel inside of me (which I rarely let out), couldn’t wait to just go for it. Jas & I travelled quite far to get to West Hampstead. Luckily we arrived just in time to grab some lunch and a coffee before the appointment (I say luckily, as the appointment ended up lasting around 4 hours). We arrived to a very warm welcome. I didn’t have time to research extensively about what I was after, so asked for a warm brown/subtle reddish balayage with Olaplex to limit the damage. I wanted a balayage as opposed to highlights as it is more subtle and blended. Balayage is a technique in which hair is delicately painted with dye in a natural and blended manner. I was not too nervous at this point as I saw all the other customers looking beautiful with their new hair, so immediately felt confident that I was in great hands. I was a little confused though, as I had always believed balayage is done without foils—I guess every colourist has their own method.

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Me, with my black hair pre-dye. I hate this pic, but Jas seems to think it’s nice.

Within a couple of minutes, the foils were out. I don’t think I had mentally prepared myself for this point, but felt a sudden gush of excitement that overcame any doubts. It took a good hour to get all my hair foiled up, an additional 45 minutes to let it all marinade (not too sure of the technical term for this). With the lovely atmosphere and the staff regularly offering tea or coffee, the time went by pretty quickly.

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All foiled up like a jacket potato.

When the foils were removed, I was in utter shock. My hair was bright red. The colour of a London bus. Although I was on a daring streak this was a little too far. Fortunately the hair stylist had no issues with toning it down for me.

The result was better than I could ever have expected. A fiery mahogany brown/red. The perfect shade that I could not have described even if I had tried. In fact, I was so happy with the results, I had to give the salon a tip! The Olaplex treatment has left my hair feeling healthy, it is still in the newly blow dried state so I can’t fully commit to an opinion on the success of this treatment, but I can honestly say that my hair doesn’t feel particularly damaged after the bleach—which I somewhat attribute to the strengthening power of Olaplex.

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I got home and couldn’t wait to play with my new locks. Here are a few styles I tried out…

Red Balayage 7

Red Balayage 3

Balayage 1

Red balayage 4

 

Red balayage 9

Baayage 10

I have found that I need to tone down my make-up a bit now though, I use more neutral colours…with nude lipsticks looking the best to offset my new fiery locks.

 

 

 

Huda Beauty Liquid Matte Lipsticks Swatches and Review

Hi, it’s Jas…I will also be contributing to Phillaur Beauty…

General Info

This was my first foray into the truly magical world of liquid lipsticks…and I am now a convert. I don’t bother with normal lipstick much any more; they pale in comparison with the liquid version. I am someone who likes my lipstick topped up and looking freshly applied…so I am continually touching up when using a normal lippie. I don’t like fading colour on my lips…

Enter Huda’s amazing liquid mattes. Game-changer. I ordered mine in the UK from a website called Cult Beauty, they retail for £18 and it is free shipping for orders over £50. They also sell them in Harrods. So when you apply these they stay put and look very similar to when they were first applied for a long time after. They apply an even, matte colouring to the lip. They will even stay put even after a little bit of eating and drinking as long as it is nothing too oily. They are definitely worth the splurge – they make lips look flawless. And they are so pigmented that it is actually quite easy to draw a little over your lips with the applicator – to make lips look fuller. I am sure this look would be a bit of a mess with most other lipsticks and it will just look like you failed in applying make-up in a moving vehicle probably 🙂 But, no, honestly these are amazing!! They are without a doubt my holy grail lipstick and I will definitely be re-purchasing when my favourite colours run out. And I will definitely be testing out some new shades in the Nude Love Collection in the near future. I am not gonna bother writing about packaging – who cares right – I care about how the product looks when worn and how well it performs…there is no point writing the packaging it comes in which will be thrown away anyway.

Colours I Bought

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Left to right (no flash): Bombshell, Trophy Wife, Venus, Heartbreaker, Icon, Trendsetter

huda swatches

Top to Bottom (with flash): Trendsetter, Icon, Heartbreaker, Venus, Tropy Wife, Bombshell

Note: I feel the colours come up a bit lighter in these pics compared with real life.(Heartbreaker in second pic is similar to real life tho!) Also, I don’t have Gossip Gurl with me right now so cannot provide a swatch for it :/

After much deliberation and umming and ahhing, I purchased the shades Bombshell, Venus, Heartbreaker, Trophy Wife, Icon, Gossip Gurl and Trendsetter.

I am a NC25/30/35 (depending on season lol) and obviously all these colours will suit different skin tones differently. I have my sister Pav modelling these colours for me below; she has NC35 skin and is a more photogenic than me (albeit a bit of a poser!).

Huda Liquid Matte Bombshell

Bombshell: A warm lightish nude with a bit of a peachy undertone. I love this shade—it is a nice neutral colour if you want to go all out on eyes and bronzer.

Huda Liquid Matte Venus

Venus: This is more of a cool toned light nude with some light brown undertones. Again, this is the perfect daily colour. This is another favourite of mine.

Huda Liquid Matte Heartbreaker

Heartbreaker: A red with slightly blue undertones…reminds me of Mac Ruby Woo a bit colour wise. I don’t wear this that much to be honest…in fact I think I have only worn it once in nearly 6 months of owning it. I do think Huda’s nudes are better—as a red, I didn’t think this was much better than the Sephora lip stain I own. But part of the reason I haven’t worn it much is just because I am more into my neutral tones at the moment. This colour is also slightly harder to remove in my experience.

Huda Liquid Matte Trophy Wife

Trophy Wife: I would describe this as a dull, slightly browny purple colour. It’s quite dark (and a bit vampy) on me. I do not think it is a very wearable colour for me. But there are loads of other reviews where this colour looks great on others.

Huda Liquid Matte Icon

Icon: This was a surprise for me, I actually find it quite wearable as it isn’t that stark or harsh. I would describe it as a warm, terracotta, red/slightly brown colour. I really like this one for everyday too.

Huda Liquid Matte Gossip Gurl

Gossip Gurl: This is a warm pink colour…I would have preferred a lighter, duller shade of pink. I felt it was quite bright…not really bright but just not muted enough for the kind of shade I wanted. I don’t wear this.

Huda Liquid Matte Trendsetter

Trendsetter: This is quite a warm brown. It is quite brown in my opinion – medium to dark brown.  I do enjoy wearing this colour though and it is one of my faves.

Note: Although they may have a slight sheen in some pictures, this is just because we did not allow the colour to set (1-2 mins) before taking pictures. We had a tight slot to take all these photos in! All colours do dry matte.

Similar Products I Have Tried

I have tried NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream (nowhere near as long lasting or ability to draw clean edges.) I do still wear them though for times when I don’t need my make-up to be as perfect and defined. They are a good budget option. Also, I purchased some of the Gerard Cosmetics Hydra Mattes which I feel wear off in a horrible flaky sort of way. When applying they go on a bit streaky as well. I was not overly keen on them. And I have tried the Sephora Cream Lip Stain in 03 Strawberry Kissed which I really liked the longevity and look of. But I am yet to try any further shades in this range and this shade I only wear very rarely as it is quite vibrant for most days’ attire.

Final Verdict

I love the formulation, it doesn’t make my lips look dry when on and it also stays put quite well. If you can find a shade you love in it – it is definitely a worthwhile investment.  The darker colours I cannot vouch for and I remember reading some bad reviews on the streaky application of one of them. They don’t last that long if worn daily (I do still touch up a few times in the day)—maybe 1 or 2 months—so they are pricey. But I think they are worth it!

Pav said her favourite colours were Heartbreaker and Icon. I do think Icon is flattering on a range of different skin tones.

Jas xx

Get Glowing!

Hello Guys!

I thought I would share my favourite highlighters with you just in time for the sunny days! These will definitely have you shimmering in the sun.

Number 5: MAC Global Glow Mineralize Skinfinish. Perfect subtle golden sheen for a natural healthy look.

Number 4: Illamasqua Pure Pigment, Furore. This is a playful super glittery highlighter. I sometimes use this when I do the ‘strobing’ technique to give just a little extra emphasis to certain parts of my face.

Number 3: Mary-Lou Manizer AKA ‘the luminizer’.  The most extreme highlighter I have come across so far, for the ultimate cheekbone pop. Although I don’t use this daily, it is a must in your make up collection for those ultra glam days.

Number 2: Laura Geller, Baked Gelato Swirl Illuminator, Gilded Honey. This product has been widely raved about on blogs, and its all for a very good reason- It’s phenomenal! Beautifully finely milled baked powder, so it doesn’t give the glittery look and more of a natural build-able glow.

My FAVOURITE, Number 1: Bare Minerals Eyecolor, Pure Gold. I recently discovered how beautiful this eyeshadow is as a highlighter when I went on holiday having left most of my makeup at home. With my limited products, I thought I would try this out as a highlighter- it worked wonders!!

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From top to bottom:

  • Bare Minerals, Pure gold
  • Illamasqua, Furore
  • Mary-lou Manizer
  • Laura Geller, Gilded honey

Pav

xxx

Is your Foundation & Primer compatible?

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This post is for those of you that have real trouble with flaky looking (split) foundation. This can be extremely frustrating, especially for those of you that get stuck in a vicious cycle spending small fortunes of different foundations trying to find one that suits your skin better.

Quite often, this ‘foundation splitting’ effect occurs as a result of using a incompatible primer under your foundation – here I will share a simple trick to help you determine the compatibility of your primer & foundation.

All you will need is a bowl of water and spatular. Simply put a small droplet of the foundation/primer into the bowl of water, and carefully observe what happens next:

  • If the product starts dispersing – the product is water based
  • If the product floats and stays intact – the product is oil/silicone based

The trick is to use the tiniest drop possible, otherwise you may be waiting a while to see the dispersion taking place!

Here is a picture of the Make up forever HD foundation dispersing in the water- this is therefore water-based. It also shows a larger droplet which hasn’t dispersed instantly.

IMG_4724Hope this post was useful for you all

🙂

The holy grail of concealer?

Probably the makeup product most us women can’t live without, the item we would take with us to a desert island, the difference between looking sleep deprived and remotely human – it’s all about concealer!

What is concealer for? Yes you guessed it, to conceal areas needing a little extra coverage. Its as simple as that yet so many of us  misuse this product e.g. as a corrector, highlighter. It really depends on what area of your face needs that extra coverage but always remember – Less is more, instead of piling on the product follow my tips below:

Ok so coverage for your under eyes:

Here you want to study your eyes and define exactly what the problem is. Do you have under eye bags? if so, what undertone do they have? This is where the corrector comes into play;

Blue – Orange corrector

Purple – Yellow corrector

Red- Green corrector

Remember, these are use for the sole purpose of providing color balancing NOT for coverage. therefore keep the product used to a minimum (Unlike those ridiculous instagram videos).

Next, get yourself a concealer that matches your skin tone. The consistency of this will allow you to create a thicker coverage for darker bags or less coverage for those luckier girls. A common misconception is that your concealer needs to be two shades lighter then your face – this can leave your under eyes looking ashy so best to avoid this advice.

The lighter concealer can be applied after as an optional step (but ensure this is not directly under the eye leave a small gap under your eye to retain that natural look).

The last stage is of course to powder- My absolute hands down fave has to be the Laura Mercier secret under eye powder.  – and your done 🙂

On blemishes of the face:

Firstly, again we start with the correcting principle – usually blemishes have a red tone so we would need to balance using a green corrector. After this we conceal using a product that matches our foundation exactly. – Thats all there is to it!

My Favorite Concealers??

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I have three favorite concealers, for three different moods.

  1. BUDGET CONCEALER: Maybelline erase eye concealer £7.99 (low coverage)
  2. WORK CONCEALER: Nars creamy concealer £19.00 (medium coverage)
  3. PARTY-TIME CONCEALER: Kevyn Aucoin sensual skin enhancer £38.00 (high coverage)

All three are tried an tested and absolutely fantastic!

 

Hope this was useful for you all 🙂

xxxxxx

How to beat those panda eyes.

One issue that I have always have suffered with is eyeliner smudging under my eyes. Have you ever wondered how some people manage to maintain immaculate eyeliner all day …but you’re left with panda eyes after an hour or two??

Well no more smudged liner for you, I will teach you the tricks to keep your eye makeup looking fresh all day. Seem to good to be true? You’ll be surprised at how many people share this problem- and thankfully there are ways to help!

Firstly you need to understand why your liner is smudging. You can pin point this by trial and error. Try out just top liner for a day (with no mascara) measure the extent of smudging by the end of the day and repeat this with bottom liner and then top mascara and finally bottom mascara. Once you figure out the issue you can narrow down your approach to solving this.

There are three main reasons why your eye makeup is smudging:

  1. USING THE WRONG PRODUCTS: If you are using eyeliners chances are they are not smudge proof and can easily budge around our face.
  2. OILY LIDS: Sounds ridiculous but overly oily lids, or not allowing your moisturiser to fully absorb before applying makeup is a common makeup mistake. The greasy surface is slippery and allows make up to slide around the eye socket and particularly into creases.
  3. DRY EYES: Dry eyes tend to have increased production of tears. This is the eyes way of solving the dry eye situation. This will particularly affect any eyeliner in the bottom water line of the eye.

In order to tackle these points firstly, make sure that you use a great eyeliner. I would suggest a liquid liner which is smudge proof. In order to reduce oily lids all you need to do is apply some translucent powder to set the concealer and absorb the extra moisture. For dry eyes, you can obtain some eye drops from your local pharmacy for dry eyes. ]

 

 

 

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