Beauty Without Fuss

Friday, 29 March 2013

Max Factor Giant Pen Sticks Launch Monday!


*This post contains sponsored content* 
So, the day is finally almost here, and I thought I'd save my favourites of the new Max Factor Colour Elixir Giant Pen Sticks till last, so here they are; Designer Blossom and Passionate Red:

As in the previous pairings, there's one sheerer (Designer Blossom) and one more opaque shade, in this case, Passionate Red.

Now, whilst Designer Blossom is rather sheerer, it isn't lacking in pigment, and can be blotted down into a rather nice stain, which is my preferred way to use it. Passionate Red is a deeper, more dramatic shade, with hints of golden shimmer.  On the lips:

As you can probably see, Designer Blossom has more of a glossy sheen, whereas Passionate Red is more of a satin, last time for both is about average, you'll need to reapply to get a glossy effect, but Designer Blossom has more of a staining effect on the lips than Passionate Red, so there's very little "red ring of doom" effect in wear.

Overall, I've been quite impressed with the Giant Pen stick collection, they're unflavoured big lip pencils (the name is a bit misleading, I think - they're not "giant", and they're definitely not pens!), in a nice range of colours for both the colour-shy, and the fans of vibrant shades.  And, at £6.99 each, you can afford to buy (more or less) the entire range for the cost of one shade from Tom Ford.  Well, if you don't buy yourself a sharpener at the same time, you can, anyway!  Here's a last look at all the shades together, both on the lips and not:

Sheer shades at the top, opaque shades at the bottom.  My picks are very definitely both of the reds, with Vibrant Pink and Subtle Coral edging their way in too.  Whilst I wouldn't wear Princess Pink outside the house if you paid me a million dollars, it's a brave shade for a collection from Max Factor who aren't particularly known to be that edgy, and I know a lot of people will love it

Which are your picks?  There's a 3-4-2 offer on at Boots right now, btw ....

The Fine Print: Advertorial post: Max Factor paid for the space on the blog, but not the opinions held within.
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Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Shay & Blue: Atropa Belladonna Review

I do get a bit excited when I hear about a new perfume brand, and I get super-excited when I realise that it's an affordable brand, albeit one with aspirations.  Niche perfumes are (in the main) lovely and amazing and wonderful, but I am aware that if I wasn't a beauty blogger, very many of them would be beyond  my reach from a financial point of view.  

Describing themselves as a "boutique perfumery", the creators of Shay & Blue; Dom De Vetta and Julie Masse, boast a wealth of perfume experience between them. Indeed, Dom has worked for Chanel and Jo Malone, and Julie has trained as a perfumer with (amongst others) Christine Nagel.  Shay & Blue are trying to handcraft fragrances, and bring a new experience to perfume-buying that can't be replicated by the mass-marketers of fragrances.

With a new collection of six fragrances, (Atropa Belladonna, Blood Oranges, Amber Rose, Sicilian Limes, Suffolk Lavender, plus Almond Cucumber) I had a hard time selecting what I wanted to try, my heart was torn between Almond Cucumber, Blood Oranges and Atropa Belladonna, but I eventually settled on Atropa Belladonna, as I was drawn in by the description of:

"... Atropa Belladonna, inspired by deadly nightshade, with the richly decadent scent of dark cassis berries blended with the heady white flower blooms of narcissus and jasmine, on a base of rich bourbon vanilla. Daringly different, chic, mesmerising ... "

Further reading about the notes yields:

Top: Mesmerizing berries and cassis liqueur.

Heart: Blooms of white narcissus and Grasse jasmine.

Base:  Patchouli, sandalwood, rich bourbon vanilla.

The top notes are a very intriguing flash of blackberries and blackcurrants, with an oddly savoury undertone.  Whilst fruity, the fragrance isn't sweet at all, which is something I very much appreciate.  In fact, the opening reminds me, very much, of the recent Jo Malone release of Blackberry and Bay, which has a similar blast of non-sweet fruit, and both of these openings are very much to my taste.

On further wearing, I don't really get much in the way of jasmine, but there is a lingering hint of soapiness, which I attribute to the fact that very many berry leaves do smell a little soapy, it's a bit waxy, and feels fat with the promise of sandalwood to come. Sandalwood always smells a little "fatty" to me, for some reason, I don't really understand why. The dry down is a little sweeter once the vanilla shows up, but it's not a custard-y kind of vanilla, it's a bit dark and rather creamy, with hints of wood.  It's a very nice scent!

I think for the price-point (£30 for 30mls, £55 for 100mls, and £35 for candles), Shay & Blue offer an intriguing collection of fragrances - I've heard great things about their Almond & Cucumber, which I'm dying to try - and I think this is great, tightly edited collection of items, there are no body products, no makeup, no home furnishings etc to dilute the ranges with. They offer beautiful packaging - reminscent of Jo Malone, but in a rather fetching blue, and as such Shay & Blue is definitely a brand to keep an eye on.

Available at Harvey Nichols; and Shay & Blue on 0845 548 0113.
The Fine Print: PR Sample.

This post: Shay And Blue: Atropa Belladonna Review originated at: Get Lippie All rights reserved. If you are not reading this post at Get Lippie, then this content has been stolen by a scraper

Monday, 25 March 2013

Max Factor Giant Pen Sticks Launch April First!

*This post contains sponsored content*

In my post before last, I mentioned that Max Factor were launching their Giant Pen Sticks, and I gave you a little preview of two of the shades; Vibrant Pink and Hot Chocolate.  I'm back this week to show you two more, namely Princess Pink and Subtle Coral. 

First a reminder of all the shades:

I spoke to Caroline Barnes recently, who was very excited about the range of shades, commenting on how it was an "extremely 'fashion-forward' collection for Max Factor", and how the range of shades, as selected by Mel Arter was suitable for a range of skin-tones and looks.  

With that in mind, here's a closer looks at what might be the single-most "fashion-forward" shade: Princess Pink, alongside what is probably the easiest shade of the collection to wear, Subtle Coral:

Subtle Coral is a sheer pink-coral, and Princess Pink is an milky, almost fluoro pink, with an extremely white base.  A little too bright to be a proper pastel, it's saturated, and comes complete with a blue micro-shimmer.  Here's how they look on skin:

And here's a blurry close-up that hopefully shows off that shimmer better:

And on the lips:

Same day, same lighting, same position - look what happens to my skin!
As you can see, Subtle Coral gives just a whisper of sheeny colour to the lips, whereas Princess Pink is more opaque, and you can blot it down to a stain.

In fact, Princess Pink is a bit too "fashion-forward" for this particular beauty blogger, I tried to take a picture of my full face wearing it, but ended up having to filter the heck out of it (oh, and I got photobombed too) to stop me looking dead:

Seriously, you should have seen the "before" pic ... 

That said, Princess Pink is a colour a lot of people are going to love, in particular those with a much deeper skintone than me ... Subtle Coral, however whilst not nearly as "fun" to wear, is a useful neutral addition to a lipstick wardrobe, and it's one I've had a lot of wear out of already ...

Later this week, I'll show you what I think are the two stars of the collection, Designer Blossom, and Passionate Red.  Yes, I've saved the best (the reds - I'm ever a sucker for a red) till last - and there are no scary pictures of me and MrLippie for you, either ...  Max Factor Giant Pen Sticks will be available in Boots from 1st April.  Will you be picking any up?

The Fine Print: This is a sponsored post.  Get Lippie's editorial policy is only to accept sponsorship from products which would have featured whether or not sponsorship was on offer.  This product passed that test.  
This post: Max Factor Giant Pen Sticks Launch April First! originated at: Get Lippie All rights reserved. If you are not reading this post at Get Lippie, then this content has been stolen by a scraper

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Lippie's Lust List #3 - Tweezerit Curve

 No, it's not a flock of tiny glittery budgerigars, it's actually a collection of shiny eyebrow tweezers from

Ergonomically designed, and extremely easy to use, even for those cack-handed muppets amongst us (that'll be me, then), these are proving to be real contenders to my Tweezermans, owing to the easy to grip wider section nearer the tips.

And they're cute, too!  They cost £25 from Tweezerit. 

This post: Lippie's Lust List #3 - Tweezerit Curve originated at: Get Lippie All rights reserved. If you are not reading this post at Get Lippie, then this content has been stolen by a scraper

Friday, 15 March 2013

Clarins Instant Smooth Crystal Lip Balm

Summer lip balms in a range of colours? Check. The usual suspect shades? You know, pink, green, orange and blue?  Check. Hang on, green and blue lip balms?  From Clarins?  I don't think we're in Kansas any more ...

And yet:

They're really, really, really gorgeous.  They're also not really green and blue sadly, but this makes them not impossible to wear, as the surprisingly pigmented coloured cores of these Crystal balms make very good lipsticks, actually.  Here's some swatches:

From left to right we have:  05 Crystal Rose, 07 Crystal Gold Plum, 06 Crystal Mandarin, and 08 Crystal Berry.  The balm surrounding the coloured core is essentially clear in use, but it diffuses the edges of the shades, making them nourishing to wear, but still colourful enough to define your lips:

Lip swatches:

Crystal Rose: A soft, gentle, easy-to-wear pink

 Crystal Gold Plum: A cooler shade of plum, with a hint of golden irridescence

 Crystal Mandarin: a bright splash of juicy orange

Crystal Berry: cool berry, without any shimmer

As you can see, the shades are soft and sheer, and (some patchiness with the pigment in Mandarin and Gold Plum aside) very easy to wear.  And they smell deliciously of berries!

My picks out of these four are Crystal Rose, and Crystal Berry, they're slightly easier to get the colour applied evenly, and are the shades best suited to my skin tone.

See anything you like?  They're on counter very soon ...   
The Fine Print: PR samples.

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Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Max Factor Colour Elixir Giant Pen Sticks Launch Soon


This post contains sponsored content
I've had this glass of pretties on my desk for a while now, and, as they launch in a couple of weeks, I figured (I'm nice like that) it was time to tell you about them.  There's a slew of  "podgy" products about at the moment, but Max Factor Giant Pen Sticks in the Colour Elixir range - launching on April 1st at Boots - are slightly different, being more akin to a pencil lipstick, than a self-propelling pencil of balm.  You'll need a sharpener, for a start ...

There are six colours to choose from, all selected by Max Factor makeup artist Mel Arter. Mel; famous for her inspired and edgy makeup looks, has been inspired this time around by the latest catwalk trends, and she says:
“Right now we’re seeing the biggest colour comeback in cosmetics since the 80s – it’s a backlash against the recession as people ditch the minimal trend by adding a cheerful splash of colour. There was a real sporty element to the collections for SS/13. Brights on the lips are a huge nod to that. Specifically pink as it is such an informal and fun colour. 

"The texture should be waxy and the shape informal. My favourite Giant Pen Stick is Vibrant Pink 15 - a sophisticated fluoro-pink which is the perfect expression of that trend. Teamed with your favourite eyeliner inside the waterline, gives the statement lip more attitude. Minimal and cool.  Hot Chocolate pushes neutral lips forward for the coming season. It gives the right amount of colour and finish to a nude make-up. Your lips look tonal but alive. This shade compliments a nude make-up beautifully.”


It's a compact range of two pinks, two reds, a nude, and a, as the name implies, a rather subtle coral shade, but let's have a closer look at the two shades Mel Arter mentions above, Vibrant Pink, and Hot Chocolate:

And here's them on my lips:

Think Mel is bang on with her talk of the eighties for Vibrant Pink - I had an entire outfit this colour in 1988! I'll be showing you the rest of the range in more detail in another post, and I'll also be telling you all about my upcoming Giant Pen Stick "colour consultation" with another of my Max Factor makeup artist heroes, Caroline Barnes soon too.

Looking forward to the Giant Pen Stick Launch on April 1st?  I am! 

The Fine Print: This is a sponsored post.  Get Lippie only accepts sponsored content if it's a product that would be featured on the site ordinarily, this product passed that test.  Thanks for reading.

This post: Max Factor Colour Elixir Giant Pen Sticks Launch Soon originated at: Get Lippie All rights reserved. If you are not reading this post at Get Lippie, then this content has been stolen by a scraper

Monday, 11 March 2013

Deo Perfume Candy - Edible Deodorant?

 Ever wanted to smell good enough to eat?  Well ...

Now you can.  Kind of.  Possibly. Maybe!  We're not sure. Anyway.  Cybercandy sent me this little box of Bulgarian Deo Candy, which contains rose extract (said, in Japanese studies, to be excreted in your sweat after ingestion) and claims to perfume your pits for up to six hours after munching!  Here at Lippie Towers, we decided to try a little science for ourselves, and put the claims to the test.

Well, we say science, it was more like sitting around on a Sunday afternoon eating sweeties then sniffing each other, but, instead of calling it "a normal Sunday afternoon with the Lippies*", for the purposes of this review, the title "science" will just have to do ...

The sweeties are pretty tasty.  I expected them to be rose-flavoured, akin to a hard-boiled Turkish Delight, but they're actually orange-y, and rather sherbety too.  Very nice, in fact. Bit crunchy. I didn't tell MrL what he was eating (although his face when I pointed out it was "edible deodorant" a bit later on was worthy of a blog post in itself, frankly), and we both enjoyed them.  After an hour or so, we had a sniff of each others pits.

Man, the things I do for this blog, seriously.

So, how did we smell?  Well, not that different to normal, really.  Possibly slightly sweeter than usual,  but there was no gust of Bulgarian rosy pits that we could discern, alas.  I'm slightly disappointed, but hey!  Sweeties!

For £1.85 you can have literally minutes of fun wit these, and possibly smell a bit nicer ... I did actually notice that my breath was a bit sweeter after eating these, so maybe a better breath freshener, as well as a nice taste sensation. 

You can find Deo Perfume Candy here
* We do our perfume testing on a Sunday. And MrL is a chocoholic.  SHUT UP.

The Fine Print: PR Sample
This post: Deo Candy - Edible Deodorant? originated at: Get Lippie All rights reserved. If you are not reading this post at Get Lippie, then this content has been stolen by a scraper

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Lippie's Lust List #2 Clarins Instant Smooth Crystal Lip Balm

Seriously, how gorgeous are these?  Full review for you later on in the week, but just had to share this picture today!

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Friday, 8 March 2013

Bobbi Brown Lilac Rose Eye Palette, Roza Polish and Lipglosses

It's been a while since I've featured anything from Bobbi Brown, I realise, but the press release for the new Lilac Rose collection was so pretty I couldn't resist ... a reasonable-sized collection, consisting of a new shimmer brick, an eye palette, a polish and several lip colours, I've selected my picks of the collection to show you here.

First off, the star of the show, the Lilac Rose eyeshadow palette.  This couldn't have been better chosen for me, if I'd selected the shades myself (though I'd have left out the shimmery lilac, thereby negating the whole point of the palette's inclusion in the collection in one go, but there you are, I'm an iconoclast*, I am):

 Housed in a package the same size as a normal shimmer brick, the Lilac Rose Eye palette contains eight shadows, all in the (rather muted) lilac/taupe/plum/brown range, with a variety of finishes.

In the top section, you have (clockwise from top left):
Ivory - Matte but not chalky shade
Pale Rose - matte pale plum-taupe
Pink Lily - Metallic (and slightly powdery) lilac, there was quite a bit of fallout from this
Stormy Grey - Shimmery brown with a greyish cast.

On the bottom you have (also clockwise from top left)
Barely There - satin-finish pale tan-flesh shade
Heather Brown - similar to Barely There, only with a touch more pink, and a lot more shimmer
Dusty Lilac - I'd say this was more of a dusty rose shade, very matte, and makes (strangely), an excellent contour shade
Black Chocolate - blackened dark brown, but without any red tones.  A great liner colour.

This is a great set of neutrals that you can use to create quite a few looks with.  I've created smokey looks with stormy grey, pink lily, pale rose and  black chocolate, and a few no-makeup looks with the other shades too.  If pink lily was more purple, then this would - quite possibly - have gone into the top ten eyeshadow palettes of all time.

I'm also a big fan of the Roza Nail Polish that comes with this collection, you know when you get something, and you want to wear it there and then?  I had that with this shade:

Obligatory "Claw" bottle shot
 It's a slightly greyed out pink colour, which really called out to me in the bottle.  No idea why, I'm a bit odd like that.  However, once on my hands, I realised that if Mannequin Hands (where your nail polish matches the colour of your skin -God knows why) is still a thing in the blogging world, then this would be my pick:

Yes, I did mainly choose this shot to show off my wedding ring.  Shut UP.
Roza is, however, extremely sheer.  And, by that, I mean: extremely sheer. This is four coats, and, in the right light, I can still see my nail line which is annoying.  But it does appear to be quite hard-wearing, these pictures were taken on day three of application, after a couple of days of housework and cooking, and it's held up very well indeed. That said, if I have to apply four or five coats every time, I don't think the bottle will last all that long!  This has been my first experience with Bobbi Brown polish though, and it's a good one, I shall have to investigate some of the other shades.

Finally, there are a couple of lipglosses with the collection, which I don't love (they're too sheer for a lipstick slut like myself), but it's a good formula nonetheless, and I'm happy that the crappy brushes Bobbi Brown lipglosses have been saddled with for (what seems like) forever have been ditched in favour of doe foot applicators.  Here's the swatches:

At the top you have Lilac Rose, and bottom you have Pink Lily.  Both nice shades in the tube, but on the lips all you get is a slight milky glaze with just a hint of colour.  Not my kind of thing, personally, but possibly not such a bad thing, as, personally, I think lilac lipstick (and gloss) should be bannedIt makes you look cyanotic, and, unless you're an habituee of Camden pretending to be one of the undead, or are an actual Victorian consumptive crack whore, it's not an easy look to pull off, frankly.

Overall, an extremely nice collection, as far as I'm concerned (potential cyanotic lip issues aside), what do you think? It's on counter this week, and prices start from £11 for the nail polish up to £45 for the eyeshadow palette

* Yes, I did have to check that meant what I thought it meant. I've been away, I think my brains have atrophied.  

The Fine Prinr: PR Samples.  No Victorian crack whores harmed in the writing of this post. Camden, you're on your final warning, however.
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