Monthly Archives

October 2013

Clothing and Fashion, Make-up, Nails, Skincare

Oct/Nov’s Most Wanted

October 30, 2013

It’s the time of year when I should be focusing my purchases on others, ready for Christmas. Unfortunately all this does, is fuel my longing for products that I happen to spot along the way. There are so many things that I want -need- this festive period that I have no idea where to begin!

First up, Dior in “Rouge Dior 999”, because even though I already own over 9000 red lipsticks, I really need this one! I don’t know why, I’ve never been a massive fan of this brand before, I love their perfume but that’s mostly where it lies. I keep seeing beautiful adverts for this lipstick though and I don’t know if it’s the arty “chains” it is photographed with or how in the right light, the casing looks like it’s made of studs, the fact of the day is – I want it in my life!

For £26.00 from House of Fraser, it could be yours (and mine)

Now, lip Crayons are still quite a craze. Owning a few I think they are OK but most are not shades I would wear to important places such as the stage.  The NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in “Dragon Girl” and also “Red Square” both look absolutely amazing. Unfortunately only the Red Square colour is available on the UK NARS website which makes me very sad.

They start around £17.50 and you can pick them up directly from

I’m not one to lust over Loreal Skincare, but browsing a beauty magazine I hade a lot of fun playing with one of their QR codes which scans your face and tells you all about what skin tone you have.

The Loreal Skin Perfection range promises to “transform the appearance of skin quality” with tone looking more even and pores virtually undetectable. With wild statements like this I simply must at least try the Day Moisturiser.

For a very reasonable price of £9.99 I shall be picking one of these up from Boots although I may wait until -after- Christmas.

L'Oreal Paris Dermo Skin Perfection Skin Perfection Correcting Day Moisturiser 50ml


I’ve been swallowing feelings of envy for a while now over this pallette. Seeing a lot of our fellow beauty bloggers reviewing theBalm “Nude tude” palette, with 12 beautiful neutral colours I really really want this.

The cheapest I have found this is £26.00 from Feel Unique. Can I resist this for a few more months?

Illustration of theBalm® cosmetics NUDE 'tude™ Nude Eyeshadow Palette

Gem and I are going to a friends wedding on Saturday. (Evidence of our hen party shenanigans found here) With the theme being Red and Black, naturally my dress had to be red. After having a shoe dilemma and searching the web for a perfect match to my 50’s dress I came across these:

Iron Fist Little Lamby Polka Dot T-Bars. They retail around £44.00 definitely not an amount of money I am willing to spend on shoes right now, but I will be purchasing these as soon as I can physically justify it. (Being someone who never/rarely wears heels.)

My rubbish girl skills for walking in heels aside, look at them! They are absolutely perfect, it’s like they one day, decided they were going to make a shoe for “Pants and friends.”

Lastly, before my bank closes and ties all contact with me. O.P.I Christmas 2013 Liquid Sand editions modelled by Mariah Carey. At the very least I must have in my possession “Kiss me at midnight” and “It’s Frosty Outside” for all of my Christmas nail art fun!

Full size prices range from £11.00 but you can pick up the miniature versions in Christmas sets for about the same price.


Kiss Me at MidnightKiss Me at Midnight


So there we have it, my October and spilling rather heftily into November most wanted. Are there any things you are lusting after this time of year? Let us know!

Totally hellbent for spending all the monies on all of the shiny things



Studs and Flicks Competition Win Review!

October 28, 2013

I was lucky enough to win a giveaway run by Shannon over at Studs and Flicks and my prize just arrived!

CK tempting glimmer, Collection hot looks and compact mirror

I won a Collection Hot Looks nail polish in Milkshake, Calvin Klein Tempting Glimmer in Sage Shimmer and an adorable compact mirror.

Collection Hot Looks Milkshake

Milkshake is a very grown up pink-ish nude. I actually only own a few nudes and I love fast dry varnishes so I was really excited to try this out. The brush is amazing and covered my smaller nails in one sweep, and the formula was thick enough that I could probably have gotten away with one coat if I was really in a hurry.


I already own a few CK Tempting Glimmers (reviewed here) but luckily not this one! It’s a gorgeous deep metallic brown with a coppery shimmer, and swatches absolutely beautifully.

Calvin Klein Tempting Glimmer  Sage Shimmer swatch

Cream eye-shadows are notorious for creasing, and this is no different, but a quality primer will extend wear by a good few hours, and if they do crease they are soft enough that a quick sweep of the finger will put it back in place!


Finally the cute vintage style compact! I always carry a mirror and this is the perfect design for the 50’s style wedding I’m off to this weekend, so I’ll tuck it into my clutch with a red lipstick and be set for the night!

Totally hellbent for winning surprise goodies

– Gem


Libby’s Hen Night: A Timeline

October 28, 2013


5.30pm > I head over to Amie’s house to get ready. Literally take enough beauty supplies to open a medium sized Boots.

5.33 > First bottle of wine opened.


5.40 > The bride-to-be arrives and gives me the most gorgeous black glittery Hell Bunny dress to wear! Lucky me!

6.00 > All the make-up. All the hairspray.





7.15 > Mother of Steel arrives and we pose for some tasteful photos


7.30 > Our chauffeur takes us into town, with a brief stop off to pick up a bottle of Lambrini for the car. Classy.

8.00 > We arrive at The Dragon Inn to meet the future mother-in-law and sister-in-law. It’s full of chavs but we meet a amateur football team from the “Sarf af laaandon” and they provide some amusement in exchange for our directions towards the nearest Chinese


8.15 > Arrive at Reflex. Buy biggest cocktails available and follow with shots because that seems sensible.



8.30 > Dance. Dance to all the terrible songs. Laugh at everyone who is on the pull in the cheesiest club in town. Dance some more.


10.30 > Meet an incredibly drunk girl and her boyfriend who ask if we know any cool places to go in town. We tell them we are going to Eddies, and that it’s a metal club. She likes JLS, he likes Guns’n’Roses, we figure why not and set off on an epic quest across town.


11.00 > Eddies is heaving, we loose our new friends right away and they reappear a while later on the -floor-. We bump into lots of people we know and embarrass ourselves drunkenly. I shout at the front-man of local thrash legends Eradikator about how much I want one of his band’s T-shirts.


2.00 > More drinking, dancing and catching up with friends and a very long queue to the ladies room. Finally we decide it is time to head home and we call Mr. Brains to come rescue us.


2.45 > Ooops took the wrong exit and end up in traffic on Broad Street on a Saturday night.

3.30 > Finally home, make-up off, stumble around to find PJs and SLEEP!



MUA Glamour Days Eyeshadow Palette Swatches & Review

October 26, 2013

MUA Glamour Days Palette

MUA Glamour Days Palette back and ingredients

MUA have a reputation for amazingly pigmented eyeshadows at unbelievably low prices. I already have three MUA palettes – Undressed, Glitter Ball and The Immaculate Collection, and I picked up Glamour Days and Starry Night in a recent haul.

I will be posting a review and swatch of Starry Night soon, and will add the older palettes too if requested!

Okay onto the lovely colours. Glamour Days has 12 different shades with a mix of matte and shimmer finishes. I personally find the MUA shimmers to be of a much higher quality, and this palette is no exception.

My biggest gripe with MUA is that a lot of their ranges don’t name the shades. A few of the newer products have started naming, so hopefully they will add this to older lines at some point too.

All photographs are in natural sunlight, except for the 7/8/9 which I used artificial light because the sun went behind a cloud for like…a very long time!




The first three shades all have a gorgeous shimmer, and plenty of colour pay-off. Shade 1 looks to have golden hues in the pan, but swatched is a lovely silvery white that makes a perfect highlight for a dramatic look. Shade 2 is a sea green with a lot of shimmer, I can see myself using this one the most out of all the shades. Shade 3 is a pearly pinky-purple that has a lovely glimmer when the light hits it!


MUA Glamour Days swatches 2


Shade 4 is a pearl pink, and the faintest of all the shades. Shade 5 is a matte brown, and as you can see in the swatch applied very badly with blotches. Shade 6 is a very high pigment blue that was especially creamy.


MUA Glamour days swatches 4


Shade 7 is a shimmery almost Cadbury’s purple, and very complementary to Shade 8 – a shimmery pink. Shade 9 is a bright metallic gold that will be great for the inner eyes or as a main shade for wearing with my most disgusting fabulous Manowar T-shirt.


MUA Glamour Days swatches 3


Shade 10 is a matte black that was just a bit too grey for my like. Good for adding some definition to a look if you only wanted to carry one palette around but not dark and pigmented enough for standalone wear. Shade 11 is a rose gold shimmer that looks very easy to wear, and finally Shade 12 is a more muted gold shimmer.


There’s a good mix of colours and finishes here, and as long as you apply them over a good primer they don’t crease too much. I found there was hardly any fallout when applied, but lots when picking the product up on my brush.

The packaging is simple and the clear plastic top is handy for picking up the right palette in a hurry but I find MUA palettes scratch and smear easily and I don’t imagine it would take too much to damage them. As with most palettes it comes with a double ended sponge applicator, and as usual I throw it aside and use brushes or my fingers!

For only £4.00 though, I doubt you will find eyeshadows of this quality anywhere else (but if you do – let me in on it!)

Available from Superdrug for £4.00 (Currently 3 for 2)

Totally hellbent for a whole lot of glamorous shimmer (and the odd matte too!)

– Gem


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Working 9-5 (made easier with nails)

October 25, 2013

As mentioned in a previous post, I have now been self-employed for two months, leaving behind the NHS, a well paid job, an almost Senior position and a life spent inside prison walls. (Yes I was a prison nurse.)

Although I still work as a nurse occasionally to keep my practice up, one of my main issues was with the direction of the NHS in general and my general frustrations at not being heard with my ideas being pushed aside. It had been in the works for a long time but one day, I sat down with my other half Brains and decided it was time to leave. I switched my life of caring for others for a life of perching my arse in my home Office. I am now a developer working alongside Brains and our web development company “BIOSTALL“.

One of the biggest perks of my new job, is being able to do whatever I like. I mean don’t get me wrong, I have to work hard because time is money and … well … without that there would be no shinies. It does mean however, that in between coding I can apply a few coats of Varnish or write a few blogs.

Anyway, the whole purpose of this post was to share with you the hilarity that is my desk …

Work LifeThis is just a random selection of some “go to” items on my desk at the moment. Some nail varnishes, remover, hand cream and tools for when I have the urge to repaint my nails or I get some inspiration. Behind my is all of the shiny things Gem and I purchased on our accidental shopping haul. 

I doubt I would have got away with any of this in my previous employments and I’m so proud of the day I handed my resignation in and finally took the plunge. My advice to all of you, is to do whatever you want to do. Life is too short to be unhappy and if things don’t work out, it’s not the end of the world. Live life to the full!

On a completely random side tangent, I also remembered this little beauty.

workdesk2Since October has been the subject of many a hand cream, I found this the other day amongst my cleared out work things. This is The Body Shop’s Hemp Hand Protector and it was my staple hand cream when I washed my hands about a zillion times a day. (What with the whole healthcare and infection control thing I had going on.) I had completely forgotten about it and have now returned it to it’s former glory by giving it a home on my desk so I can use it as I please.

You can find it at The Body Shop either online or in store for just £4.00. With 40% of this week, you may as well have a shop!

So in summary, do what you will providing you aren’t hurting anyone else and get all over the Hemp Hand Protector Cream from The Body Shop.

Totally hellbent for doing whatever the hell I like






Halloween Frankenstein Nails

October 25, 2013


I have another festive nail design to share with you all. This one is simply adorable!

Things you will need:

  • Black nail varnish/nail art pen
  • Green nail varnish
  • White nail varnish/nail art pen
  • Top and base coat
  • Dotting nail tool or toothpick

As always prepare your nails with a base coat. I’ve used my usual Avon peeling and brittleness solver and base coat.

halloween frankenstein nail 1

I’ve picked NYC’s In a Minute quick dry varnish in “High Line Green” for my green colour. Paint all of your nails with this to begin with.

halloween frankenstein nail 2

Next take your black varnish or nail art pen and draw a jagged line for the hair line at the tip of your nails. It doesn’t have to be neat as this adds to the effect.

halloween frankenstein nail 3

Once you are happy with your lines, fill them in. You can’t see too well in the pictures, but I used a nail art brush and dabbed the black varnish on to create a textured “hair” look.

halloween frankenstein nail 4

Add some eyes with your dotting tool and black, I’ve made mine a little uneven for a quirkier look.

halloween frankenstein nail 5

Add some lines for the mouth, you can make him smile if you like!

halloween frankenstein nail 6

Once your eyes have dried, take your dotting tool and dot a white circle in each of the eyes.

halloween frankenstein nail 7

Finish off with a top coat and there you have it. Adorable little Frankenstein monsters that you want to hug!
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October 2013 Bargains

October 25, 2013

October Bargains

For those who may not know, I am now in me second month of self-employment. Working from home has it’s perks, but it does mean I have had to curb my enthusiasm for the purchasing of ad-hoc beauty products and really take control of my spending habits.

Going from a relatively well paid job, to one that has no certainty of ever having money again is quite a daunting leap and has meant I’ve had two months of strict budgeting, which has also forced it’s way into my beauty lifestyle.

Although I have hundreds of cleansers, toners, wipes, micellar solutions and expensive exfoliating scrubs I can’t resist the urge to pick up more when I’m out and about – this month however I ditched my ridiculous body care purchases for some bargain products and was actually very surprised.

Superdrug’s own Body Polish

I resisted the urge to buy expensive body scrub for every day use because I simply didn’t need it, I opted for this, the cheap and cheerful version of my usual Body Shop purchase. Although this is a polish, I was surprised by just how exfoliating this was and how beautiful the smell was. Sometimes I find Superdrug’s body wash’s  dry my skin out a lot but this was fine. Well worth the money and I will be sampling some of the other’s in their range.

You can pick this up online or in store at Superdrug for only 0.97p!

Tesco Cucumber Face Wipes

If there’s one thing I like to spend a little bit more on, it’s a decent face wipe. The difference in use is amazing. Running dangerously low on my usual Nivea Face Wipes however, I popped into the corner Tesco’s for some groceries and ended up picking these up instead of the Nivea wipes which were almost £2 more expensive than what I would pay for them. Knowing that I wouldn’t be going to my usual shop any time soon, I picked these up for £1.25 to give them a go.

They compare to Boot’s Cucumber face wipe, which I have always found to be pretty good. They managed to remove a full face of make up with little residue left so I am very impressed considering I wouldn’t have ever considered buying Tesco’s own brand face wipes before.

Next time your in store or doing your online grocery shop and in need of a cheap and cheerful facewipes you can get a pack of 25 for £0.99 in most Tesco’s.

Totally hellbent for saving all of the pennies



Facemask Friday

Facemask Friday – Sugar and Spice Self-Heating Mask

October 25, 2013

sugar and spice

I usually go for deep cleansing and pore refining masks, but this was picked up on a whim in a 2 for 3 offer a while ago, and I figured I may as well give it a try whilst my pores are behaving for once!

The warming sensation is lovely and very soothing. I was having quite a stressful morning and felt instantly more relaxed once the facemask started heating up beneath my fingers.

The smell is a delicious vanilla and caramel – very sweet without being too strong or too sickly and overall the entire experience was a very enjoyable one.

Because it never hardens it washes off really easily in the shower, and now my skin feels very soft and also very cleansed so double whammy! Definitely worth trying if you have dry skin!

Available from Superdrug for 99p (currently 3 for 2!)

Totally hellbent for a warm face on a cold morning

– Gem


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Halloween Pumpkin Nails

October 24, 2013

It’s that time of year -again- where we have just a few precious months before Christmas and Halloween strikes! What better way to celebrate than to play around with lots of funky nail designs.

This is just a quick one to get into the spirit of things so I hope you enjoy it.

Things you will need:

  • An Orange Nail Varnish
  • A Black Nail Varnish
  • Obligatory base and top coats
  • Nail brush/dotter or tooth pick/cotton bud

Halloween nail 1First of all coat your nails with a base coat. I always use Avon’s peeling and brittleness solver and base coat.

halloween pumpkin nail 2

halloween pumpkin nail 3

Next paint all except your “accent” nail with a black colour. I’m using Avon’s nailwear pro+ in Licorice. I absolutely adore this black and have not found one like it yet. It gives such a beautiful shine!

halloween pumpkin nail 4halloween pumpkin nail 5

Next take an orange and paint your accent nail. I’m using technic Party Brights in Sunset Strip which I bought specifically for Halloween-esque nails. This took quite a few coats before I was happy. I also used this to paint the tips of my black nails. Because this is such a weak colour and needs so many coats, this gave a haunting opaque orange look over the black which I liked so much I kept.

halloween pumpkin nail 6Take your nail brush and draw an upside down apply shape as an outline for your Pumpkin.

halloween pumpkin nail 7Colour this in and add a curved line either side in black which thickens in the middle. You can also add a stalk at the same time.

halloween pumpkin nail 8Once dry, take your orange or another colour and use a dotter for the eyes and mouth. I used O.P.I’s The Drummer is Hot from the Rock Goddess set, mostly because I wanted to play with it.

halloween pumpkin nail 9

halloween pumpkin nail 10Paint over with your favorite top coat and basque in the glory of your shiny Pumpkin nails! Simples.

Do you have any Halloween nail designs you can share with us?


Totally hellbent for seasonal nail art


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Wacken Open Air tickets are here!

October 24, 2013

After what can only be described as the most soul destroying few months thinking I’d have to miss Wacken when it sold out right after the ’13 fest, I managed to get my hands on two tickets in the recent re-draw and they arrived this morning, and I’ve also just heard that Amie has received hers today!

Wacken 2014 tickets

Wacken Open Air is the ultimate international heavy metal festival, and though you can no longer buy tickets (unless they announce another draw!) you can find out more about the festival and the AWESOME line-up here.

Let the countdown begin!


[ujicountdown id=”Wacken Open Air” expire=”2014/07/28 00:00″]



Totally completely absolutely 100% hellbent for Wacken

– Gem



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