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Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Holiday Preparation - Toiletries

So, my nails are painted, the suncare is purchased ... what else do I need?  Well, toiletries, I guess!  

The haircare that I'm taking is from Tara Smith's Straight Away range - before I had Kebelo recently, (and another straightening treatment since) this was the shampoo I was using, and it was fupping wonderful stuff.  Tara's shampoos are sulfate-free, animal-friendly and free of parabens and all kinds of nasties.   I'm taking them mainly because they come in perfect travel sizes of 100ml, but they are in fact, amongst the best shampoos I've ever used.  They've been featured on here before, my friend Sarah swears by the Feed The Root Range. Oh, and they're exceptionally purse-friendly, costing just £6.50 for the larger bottles.

For showering, I'm taking:

 Tom Ford, Neroli Portofino.  Oh, and:

Tom Ford Neroli Portofino Body Lotion

Now, I'm no fan of the advertising images of this range  - in fact, I'd go so far as to say that I find most (if not all) Tom Ford advertising images at best gratuitous, and at worst downright offensive, but mostly generally totally unnecessary - but I have to say that I do love his products.  Does that make me a hypocrite?  Possibly, but hey, we all have our crosses to bear.  There is quality here, and to me, that is important.  Yes, I think they're over-priced (again, gratuitously, possibly), but  ... you make your choices and live with them, I always think.

Neroli Portofino is a gloriously summer-y fragrance that is based around the traditional cologne notes of bergamot, bitter orange and rosemary, is wonderfully light and refreshing, and the scent is rather long-lasting for a cologne.  The body lotion is second only in formulation to my Haus of Gloi pumpkin butters, being both rich, and yet easily absorbed, and it's beautifully moisturising.  I've been using the Body oil for a while now - courtesy of a sample obtained via the wonderfully generous and amazing Caroline Barnes, who took pity on me a couple of months ago and sent me a tiny decant of her own personal bottle - and this is something I've since purchased.  These all cost between £40-45 each.  A big investment, but a holiday is worth a little splurge, no?

So, you'd expect I'd be taking a bottle of the fragrance too, hmn?  Well, no, actually, I'm taking this instead:

4711.   If the Tom Ford is based on a classic cologne, then 4711 simply is the classic cologne, and at prices between £6 and £17 a bottle, then I had to take this - besides, I didn't want my toiletries to be worth more than I paid for the holiday in the first place!  I've been layering this with the TF body products on sunny days for a month or two now, and they're perfectly complementary!  I defy anyone to tell the difference between the two, after five minutes on the skin.  So there.  I'm also packing a couple of boxes of these:
4711 scented wipes, they're perfect for cooling down lightly over-heated skin, as the alcohol evaporates on the skin in the sun, it'll give a lovely calming scented effect.  And, they're £3 for a box of 12, so a total bargain for those "needing a wet wipe" moments ...

The Fine Print: Products featured in this post are a mixture of personal purchase and PR samples that I've come to love since they arrived.  I'm only taking things I love on holiday.  I'm also taking Mr Lippie. 

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Monday, 13 June 2011

Holiday Preparation - Sun Protection with Piz Buin

I'm a terribly delicate little flower you know, I bruise like a peach, and in the sun, I wilt and then prickle madly.  All joking aside, sun protection for all-over is an area where I struggle somewhat.  It's a good job I don't take exotic holidays all that often!

As I may have mentioned yesterday,  next week I'm off to Portugal for a fortnight, and, having spent our last holiday there in a prickly heat-haze, this year I'm taking no chances, I'm packing these:

Now, I'm normally a lazy mare, and I usually opt for the kind of sun care that you apply once for all-day sun protection, but I now believe that a lot of these formulations are far too heavy for sun-delicate skin, and I'm convinced that part of my problem on my last summer holiday was caused by blocked pores on my calves which lead to the incessant itching.  I discovered the Piz Buin Sun Allergy range towards the end of the holiday - at a whopping cost of 26 euro a bottle!  But, I'd been driven so crazy by itching at this point,  that I gladly paid the price.  It's a more reasonable (but still eye-watering) cost of around £17 a bottle back in the UK, but I got these on buy one get one free from Boots.  £8.50 a bottle doesn't hurt so much somehow.  I'm happy to see that Piz have added a spray top to these bottles this year, which will make them so much easier to use.

Last time I used them, I noticed that there was a definite difference between this and the all-day lotion I'd been using previously.  Whilst the itching didn't end overnight (it took another discovery for that - see below) but my skin definitely felt soothed from the first application, and I was glad to have found it.  I'm taking two bottles of each in factors 30 and 15 for the body, and a tube of factor 30 for my face.  I don't want to come home entirely the same colour I was when I left!  MrLippie will be using the same, just in the non-allergy version.  If I can track down some of the factor 8 down before we go, I'll be getting some of that too ...

I've also invested in a tube of this:

No idea what it's like at the moment, but I'll keep you posted!  I'm hoping that by using sun protection for sensitive skin in the first place that I'll avoid any prickly heat problems entirely, but in case I don't, I'm also packing these:

Yup, that's my prickly heat kit: Zirtek antihistamines (the only antihistamines I've found that work on sun allergies - between these and the Piz Buin, it's what saved my holiday last time), a massive bottle of aloe vera gel, and two cans of Magicool prickly heat spray.  I like Magicool anyway - there is very little more refreshing on a hot day - and I'm hoping against hope I won't need to use these, but I'll have them there just in case ... Last time, my major defence was lightly damp face cloths which we kept in a plastic bag in the apartment freezer!  I just wrapped those around the affected areas and it was just instant relief!  Not sure what the maids thought we were doing with them though ...

How do you prepare for your holidays?

The Fine Print: I bought all of the stuff you see in this post, but further samples - and images - have been provided by Piz Buin, for which I'm deeply grateful. They're a great bunch of lads.

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Sunday, 12 June 2011

Holiday Preparation with Get Lippie

Oh, I've got a whole week of holiday themed stuff coming up - prior to my being away on the Algarve for a fortnight from next week! - but I thought I'd start with my holiday manicure:

Two coats of Essie Geranium. A bright - bright! orange. I've never worn orange nails so bright, but I have to say I'm loving this:

Even on my freakishly pale pinky blue hands this works.

I keep catching sight of them and being surprised, as this is a big difference to my usual shades.

It's practically neon in the flesh, and not nearly as red as it appears in these pics. It has an exceptionally shiny jelly finish, which is why after two coats you can still see a hint of visible nail line, but it's a very cheery shade, and it's perfect for getting into the holiday spirit!

One last shot for luck:

You can see how the light plays with the shade here. The colour on the thumb shows it is actually ORANGE

The Fine Print: manicure courtesy of Equus Hair, where I was a paying customer

Friday, 10 June 2011

Random Friday

No real blog post today, just taking the opportunity to take stock a little bit (for today is my birthday and I've given myself the day off) over the year so far and reflect on what an amazing time it's been for Get Lippie: there have been trips to Paris,  having a couple of lipsticks made and named after me, a couple of emotional posts, an insane project, and in between there have been some amazing events (thank you, Penhaligons for the nicest dinner I've ever had in a car park, ever!), I've  made some amazing friends, and have had my highest reading figures ever.  It's a blast, and I'm suddenly back in the blogging groove, so you guys have some good posts to look forward to over the coming months.

So, lovely readers, thank you very much for reading, I'm always astonished when anyone outside of my immediate family reads this, and I'm happy you're here!

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Thursday, 9 June 2011

My All Time Favourite Eyeliner of All Time (and a dud) - Illamasqua

I love me some eyeliner - and, as this is my third eyeliner post in a row this week, you might have noticed that by now - and I love, love, love liquid eyeliner.  My default, go-to makeup on days when I simply can't be bothered is a neutral eyeshadow, a slick of liquid liner and a bit of bright lipstick, simple, easy, classic, and takes about two minutes flat to do ...

Anyhoo, my liquid eyeliner of choice is the Illamasqua liquid liner in Abyss, a black, black, black liner, which dries to a patent-leather shiny finish, and depending how you use the brush can give you everything from the finest of lines right at the roots of the lashes to make them look thicker, up to a full-on Amy Winehouse winged look.  I've used mine almost non-stop for the last six months, and it's still not showing any signs of drying up or running out.  

You can see Abyss at the top left there, shining away.

However, below that is Glister.  It's a flesh coloured eyeliner, replete with purple sparkle which I picked up from the "Toxic Nature" collection recently, because it was so different, and so pretty.  It's got all the good points of Abyss, shiny, great brush, doesn't flake or fade, etc, but ... I haven't got a clue what to do with it, mainly because on my skin (this picture isn't my skin, btw, long story, but doesn't Mr Lippie make a great hand model?) it is completely invisible.  Okay, not entirely invisible, because my skin isn't replete with pretty purple sparkles, but you know what I mean.

So, I've used it about three times, and every time it's just been a bit meh.  Do you own Glister?  How do you use yours?

The Fine Print: I purchased both of these in the Dean St store.  I think I'd been hypnotised by the floor in there.

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Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Avon Supershock Gel Eyeliner Pencils

If yesterday's £20 a pencil eyeliners were too rich for your blood, how does four for a tenner grab you?
I was idly browsing the Avon website a few weeks ago, and I noticed that they had their gel eyeliners on offer at £2.50 each, so I snapped a couple or four up, in plum, khaki, steel and bronze, and I'm very glad I did.  They're a bargain even at full price of £6 each, and, to my mind, they're just as good as the Armani ones I showed you yesterday. Nicer, possibly, as these have a lovely metallic sheen that is better than the slightly flat shades of the Armani pencils.

Again, these are one pass on clean, dry, unprimed skin.  On checking the pics against the ones I showed yesterday, I have to admit that there is slightly less pigment in the Avon pencils, but at this price, that's to be expected.  But the shades are complex, with just a hint of micro-shimmer, which can be very flattering.

They last, however, just as well as pencils costing a lot more, and they don't run or flake during the day.  They're velvety soft on application though, and simply will not drag on the skin.

A bargain at twice the price.  These shades aren't showing on the Avon website though - but they do now have the black, which they didn't when I was buying, so if you can't afford Armani, then snap these babies up!

The Fine Print: Bought and purchased with the pennies I earn from my day job. I do have a day job, I'm an accountant, but I used to be an Avon Lady.  Have I mentioned that before?  Grateful thanks go to today's mystery swatching hand ...
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Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Giorgio Armani Gel Eyeliner Pencils

I confess to not being an expert on the beauty industry, but I admit that the decisions that come beauty companies make baffle me slightly.  Take, for example, the decision by Giorgio Armani cosmetics to make their wonderful eyeliners a limited edition product.  Released once or twice a year, these pencils turn up for two, maybe three weeks at a time, then disappear not to be seen for another couple of months.

Mystifying, utterly mystifying.  

Regardless - and price aside for a moment - it's all the more astonishing, because these are, quite rightly cult items, that I don't really think that any makeup bag should be without.

We're all familiar, I guess, with gel eyeliners, the kind that come in pots, and have to be applied with a brush.  They set on the skin to give unparalleled lasting power that doesn't crease, run or flake (well, most of them don't) and are slightly easier to use than a traditional "inkwell" style liquid eyeliner.

Well, the Armani Eyeliners are gel eyeliners in a pencil, creaseproof, run proof and flake-free, they're wonderful things.  Look at the swatches from the black and green pencils above:

These are both one pass with the pencil over clean, dry, unprimed skin.  And, let me tell you, that black line was a complete pain in the bum to remove with just a cleansing wipe! It is one of the blackest, softest eyeliners I own, and I say that as someone with a collection of eyeliners that would make your average baby-goth weep inky-sweet tears of sootiest envy.

They're not great if you want a really fine line, as, being gel, they blunt very easily, but they're soft, apply with no dragging, and are (for about a minute or so) very easily smudgeable.  Once they set though, they're in place for the whole day. That is unless you're an inveterate eye-rubber, or it's an exceptionally humid day.  I've found they tend to fade rather than run though, which is preferable, in all honesty.

On the down side, they are very, very, very expensive.  At £20 a pencil, which won't actually last all that long owing to how soft they are, they are a very occasional treat.

But, tomorrow, I'll be showing you a more than acceptable alternative at around a tenth of the cost.  Sound interesting .... ?

The Fine Print: These were bought at the same time as the Armani Eyes to Kill eyeshadow I showed you on Sunday.  Once again, a stunt swatching hand was used in these posts. He's still not forgiven me.

This post originated at: All rights reserved.
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