Monthly Archives

November 2013


Elf HD Blush

November 29, 2013

elf hd blush

You know you have a serious makeup addiction, when you forget about unopened products for months.

I have a little box, that I keep packaging in, for reviewing purposes obviously. Alas, I had a nose in there and to my absolute delight I found two unopened elf products!

One of them was the Elf HD Blush in “Headliner”. I’d wanted this for ages and had completely forgotten that I had bought it on an earlier haul. I hadn’t even opened it to swatch! Anyway, I immediately rescued this from the depths of the box and had a play.


Despite this being a “liquid” blush, it’s actually quite versatile. I only used a small amount when I tried it out and it blended in well with a nice fluffy brush. As you can see from the swatches below, even when more is used, it’s not so overpowering that you can’t work with it and blend it in.

hd-swatch(Left: Concentrated swatch, unblended Right: Small swatch, blended)

The colour is beautiful, there’s a slight shimmer to it and tied in with a good highlighter, I think is is going to look fabulous for the festive season and maybe even on stage.

I’m really pleased with how this looks and feels, since I remember thinking it could go either way after previously trying out “liquid” style blushes.

You can pick up a 10ml bottle of Elf’s HD Blush here for only £3.75. (It’s so large, I think this is going to last me forever!)

Totally hellbent for finding lost treasure


Make-up, Skincare

Dec Most Wanted

November 28, 2013

I was hoping my Oct/Nov Most Wanted installment would be it until after Christmas. I was so wrong!

Browsing the web and gift magazines has only made my love for all things … well erm … all things … even bigger!

So my Nov/Dec most wanted, is going to be all the things I want, but definitely can not have until well into the New Year.

Urban Decay Vice 2 Palette

Urban Decay

20 Beautiful dark and glittery shades. God I need this. I was so upset when I saw fellow beauty bloggers posting reviews about this. It’s certainly out of my pre-christmas price range, but I am definitely going to think about purchasing this sometime in the New Year.

This beauty is only £37.80 instead of £42 at Debenhams.

Benefit Groovy-Kind-A-Love Gift set


Even though I already own two of these products, I still want this. I blame the packaging entirely. There is something about Benefit that makes me want to own it all, even though it may not be the right shade or something I would never wear.

Anyway, this beautiful gift box comes with the following:

  • mini the POREfessional
  • mini they’re real!
  • mini benetint
  • dandelion & gimme fever cheek powder duo with brush
  • eyeshadow palette with four neutral shades

This is one of those “should I – or should I not” kind of moments. Torn between spending my money on other mini Benefit products, or buying this simply because I am in love with the packaging.

You can pick this up directly from the Benefit website for only £29.50.

Nip + Fab Body Butter Trio


I squeeled when I saw this hidden in the corner of the Tesco gift magazine. I love NIP + FAB and I love Body Butter, I also love the smell of cherry and spiced apple, so for a set that includes all of these, it surely has to be for me.

As I write this, I am poking Brains repeatedly in the hope that he will get the hint. The set includes: Spiced Apple, Winter Cherry and Sugared Almond. Very festive indeed.

This beautiful trio are only £8.95 from Tesco’s


With all of my funds tied up in the gift of giving this month, I shall have to wait and see what the New Year and the delightful sales bring forth.

Totally hellbent for all the festive shiny things in all of the festive magazines. (For me?)



Body Shop special offer mini-haul PT. 2

November 25, 2013

Last week The Body Shop had two amazing special offers on, and of course I had to take full advantage of them both! I posted about the first here a few days ago, and now my second box of goodies has arrived!

This offer was a special treat for fans of The Body Shop’s Facebook Page, offering free P&P and a mini Chocomania set with purchases over £5, unfortunately the offer is no longer running as they had such a high number of orders but you can still get 35% off, free P&P and a secret free gift with this offer if you order today!

Now onto my choice of lovely treats! I actually only picked up one thing at full price, the  Vanilla Bliss Manicure and Moisture duo for £6.00.

The Body Shop Vanilla Bliss Manicure Set

Thus receiving the Chocomania lip butter (worth £4.00), Chocomania Body Scrub (woth £5) and Chocomania shower cream (worth £2) for free!

The Body Shop Chocomania Minis

I’ll be saving the scrub and shower cream for our upcoming adventure to Rotterdam, but the lip butter is amazing! So yummy!

Totally hellbent for free chocolate treats, even if you can’t eat them!

– Gem

Beauty Boxes

Latest In Beauty – The Glamour Beauty Edit Beauty Box 2

November 23, 2013

Latest in Beauty Glamour Beauty Edit



Glamour beauty edit contents Latest in Beauty


There’s just something about a pretty box full of squiggly bits of paper and beauty products that gets my heart racing!

This is the second limited edition box put together by Latest In Beauty and Glamour magazine, I missed out on the first so made sure I got right in there for round two.

First off the box itself looks very luxe, the presentation as a whole is just lovely. Inside there are  seven treats worth an amazing £65, so with the box itself costing only £15 you are definitely winning.

HD brows - Foxy

HD Brows Eyebrow Palette in Foxy

This was the biggest selling point for me, I’ve been having some issues finding a brow kit and have heard great things about HD Brows, and this alone is worth more than the whole box.

Unfortunately I’ll have to continue my hunt for perfect brows, as these are also too dark for me. Luckily all four shades double up as lovely neautral eyeshadows so it will certainly get some wear!

Full Size

£19.96 from



 Maybeline Baby Lips in Peach Kiss

Was this the most hyped beauty product of 2013? Certainly one I read about on almost all of my favourite blogs, yet I’ve not actually tried one till now. I have a massive love for all things lip balm, but I think it was actually the packaging that put me off getting one of my very own.

As ever I should learn that looks can be very deceiving as this is an amazing balm with a very sheer wash of colour and a delicious peachy scent.

Full Size

£2.99 from


eyeko lash curlers

Eyeko Lash Curlers

As far as eyelash curlers go I think there are only really good and bad. I find it hard to get excited about them, and really didn’t need another set! Still these fall firmly into the good category with a solid build and ergonomic handle. Lovely as the soft blue handles are though, they’re already picking up bits of dust so I think I’d rather have had a standard rubber grip.

Full Size

£12 from


Benefit They're Real!

Benefit They’re Real!

As someone absolutely in love with all things Benefit, this was certainly a highlight for me. Another product that’s been hyped like crazy, this lives up to all the expectations.

A quick test left my lashes looking amazing – longer, thicker and more curved lashes with just one quick coat.

3.0g Sample

Full size £19.50 from


Tony & Guy Glamour Firm Hold Hairspray

Toni & Guy Glamour Firm Hold Hairspray

This struck me as the least exciting product in the whole box, but I was pleasantly surprised after a quick test. First up the smell is actually very lovely, something I never expect from hairspray! It gave a great hold on my long thick hair without feeling sticky or heavy, and my hair still felt soft and easy to comb my fingers through.

I do like to have a few small hairsprays to keep in my gigging bags or for festivals, so this will certainly get a longer road-test at some point!

75ml Sample

Full size £6.39 from


Phillip Kingsley One More Day

Phillip Kingsley One More Day dry shampoo

Dry shampoo is the saviour of my poor coloured hair, but I’ve never ventured from the Batiste range with it’s bargain price, gorgeous scents and bright packaging. A quick spray of One More Day was in instant confirmation of price = results. My limp, unwashed hair was suddenly not only fresh but so voluminous I started to wonder if there was a blow dry somewhere in the tiny white can!

Definitely going to consider a re-purchase!

50ml Sample

Full size £13.50 from


Balance me radiance face oil

Balance Me Radiance Face Oil

It took me a long time to come around to the idea that putting oil based products on my oily skin could actually work, but this is the final bit of proof I need to really open up to the concept.

A mixture of gorgeous natural oils in a handy roller-ball, just a quick test left my skin feeling amazingly soft, and not greasy at all.

Full Size

£15 from


Overall I have to say this box was worth every penny, but if you fancy one for yourself you’d best be quick! The last box sold out pretty quickly, and as this makes such an amazing christmas gift for any beauty lovers I wouldn’t imagine this will last long at this time of year!

Available from Latest in Beauty for £15 (+p&p).

Totally hellbent for a glamorous box of treats!

– Gem 


Body Shop special offer mini-haul PT. 1

November 22, 2013

Body Shop offer 1


The Body Shop is one of those places where  I never seem to have to buy anything at full price because there is always a great offer on – at the moment you can get 35% off everything, free delivery and a free gift when you spend £5! This offer runs till Monday 25th Novemeber, so still plenty of time to get your hands on some shinies!

My first package arrived this morning (I’m waiting on another from a different offer that unfortunately has finished now) and here’s what I chose.



Ultra Fine Bath Lily – Aqua £2.00

The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore minimizerTea Tree Pore Minimiser – £7.50

And my free gift….

The Body Show Shea Body ButterShea Body Butter – RRP £13

So with my 35% discount and free bonus I paid only £6.17 for what should have been £22.50 (+P&P!).

Expect to see reviews on the pore minimiser and body butter coming soon, and look out for my second Body Shop mini-haul that hopefully will arrive over the next few days!

If you want to take advantage of this amazing offer just head to and use the code MYSTERY at checkout!

Did you get any nice treats with this special offer? If so, let me know what – and did you get a different free gift?

Totally hellbent for amazing savings!

– Gem


MUA Starry Night Eyeshadow Palette Review and Swatches

November 22, 2013

MUA Starry Night Palette

MUA have a great range of eyeshadow palettes, but I always seem to have trouble with their matte shades. This gorgeous silver toned collection however is all shimmer finish, making every single shade a winner.

Starry Night has twelve shades in total, but as with all the older MUA lines they are not named (or even numbered – a big gripe of mine!).

As with all cheaper eyeshadows a primer is an absolute necessity, and for these swatches I’ve used the MUA Professional Primer for some brand continuity!

MUa starry night swatches 1


MUA starry night swatches 2





MUA starry night swatch 4

There’s enough variation in this relativly colour restricted palette to create a number of looks, and with the right blending I reckon there are some amazing smoky silver looks coming my way.


Available for £4.00 from

Totally hellbent for an all shimmer MUA palette!

– Gem


MUA Luxe London Glitter Eye Palettes in Rock Chick and Diva

November 21, 2013

MUA Luxe Glitter eyes Rock Chick, Diva

My transition from occasional glitter lover to full on magpie seems to be reaching an all time climax and I nearly did myself some damage when I saw these little boxes of sparkle!

There are four palettes on offer, Rock Chick, Diva, Burlesque and Twilight, ranging from cool blues to fiery reds. I of course went for the two blue toned palettes Rock Chick and Diva and I’ve been pretty mesmerized with them since.

The glitter is suspended in a gel, which I thought would be poorly pigmented and difficult to build up, but actually it’s the complete opposite! Unfortunately all eight shades are liable to crease purely from the nature of the product, but I for one am happy to overlook this for the sake of such gorgeous colours!

MUA Luxe glitter applicator

The sponge applicator that comes with each palette is actually pretty good for applying the gel, with a thick and thin end for more precision.


MUA Luxe Glitter Eyes Diva


Diva consists of a bright emerald green, a black/silver, a grey holo silver and a white holo silver.

MUA Luxe Glitter Eyes Rock Chick

MUA luxe glitter eye swatches Rock Chick


Rock Chick has a deep turquoise blue, a black/multi holo, a light blue and a pure silver.

If you’re a fan of warmer tones I suggest you go take a look at the other two palettes on offer, as they are just as gorgeous and will no doubt make their way into my possession soon!

Available for £4 from

Totally hellbent for all things sparkly and shiny!

– Gem



Free Nails Inc. with Glamour Magazine.

November 20, 2013

Kate Spade Nails Inc Soho Silver

Glamour have really been busting out the big guns recently when it comes to freebies!

This month’s freebie is a choice of four gorgeous Kate Spade for Nails Inc. polishes! I made a smash and grab for Soho Silver, but soon went to track down the other three available shades Big Apple Red, New York Noir and Uptown Glamour.

Kate Spade for Nails Inc Glamour promotion

They are full size 10ml polishes with an RRP of £11, so you can get the whole set worth £44.00 for a bargain busting £8!

Kate Spade Nails Inc Swatches

Nails Inc. have a great formula, and all four applied smoothly and easily. Drying time is fast and they are pretty resilient to chipping.

Totally hellbent for more nail varnish that I really didn’t need (but really wanted!)

– Gem 



NYC Disco Inferno Topcoat

November 19, 2013

NYC Disco Inferno Top Coat

NYC are really upping the game on glitter topcoats at the moment. As well as  the gorgeous Rock Muse collection (reviewed here) I also spotted this gorgeous stand alone shade Disco Inferno.

A clear base with blue and silver holo glitter, it really has to be seen up close to understand how absolutely gorgeous it is.

NYC Disco Inferno Top Coat

I think it would look great over any complimentary shade but I really love how it looks over the dark blue. (B. Complete 180 Midnight from this months Glossybox) It’s equally stunning over both black (Avon Rapid Black) and white (Avon Star)

You don’t often get such a gorgeous finish with budget brands, but NYC never fail to impress across their nail range. I’ll be keeping my eye out for anything that twinkles on their stand from now on!

I do find it strange that this isn’t a red/orange/yellow tone given the name, but I’ve decided it’s a bit more of a metal inferno and I can’t complain about anything giving me reason to indulge in this most magnificent riff (and THAT chorus)



Available from Superdrug stores for £1.99, I can’t currently find it anywhere on-line but if you find it shoot me link!

Totally hellbent for anything that inspires thoughts of Symphony X!

– Gem




Beauty Boxes

Miss Glossybox November/December 2013

November 18, 2013

Miss Glossybox November December 2013


Miss Glossybox is the younger sibling of the HBFL favourite, Glossybox. A bi-monthly subscription beauty box aimed at teenagers.

The box costs £7.00 (+£2.95 P&P) and everyone receives the same items.

This month contains three full size products (worth £29.50 together!) and two sample sizes.

dermalogica breakout clearing foaming wash


Dermalogica Clear Start Breakout Clearing Foaming Wash

Despite being well into my twenties, I still suffer from breakouts like your average teen so this looks to be a great product for me. I’m a huge fan of the Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant too so I’ll be switching this into my skin-care regime immediately!

Full Size

£13.00 from


SO...? Brit


So…? Brit Body Spray

Okay so it’s been a long time since I busted out an Impulse spray, and this is a box aimed at a younger market so I’ll give it a shot. Though it’s far from the more mature, multi-note fragrances we’re drawn to as proper grown ups it’s alright as a post workout cover-up. It’s a bit too synthetic, but I’m sure I’ll find a use.

50ml Sample.

Full size £0.99 from


Jelly Pong Pong 2 in 1 shadow liner

Jelly Pong Pong 2-in-1 Shadow/Liner

I do love me some Jelly Pong Pong! This is the third or fourth time I’ve received an item from the brand in a Glossybox and it’s always a welcome sight (though I wonder if those who arn’t so fond enjoy the same brand over and over).

This is a gorgeous bronze chubby pencil that can be used as both an eyeliner or eyeshadow, I imagine I will use it most as the latter as it blends beautifully into a subtly metallic shimmer.

Full Size.

Available for £10.50 from


Lacoste touch of pink EDT

Lacoste Touch Of Pink EDT

First thoughts were “Oh no, another bloody fragrance sample” and “Bleugh, Lacoste?! Chavvy much!” but actually this is a rather charming floral scent. Points lost on being a stick dispenser rather than a spray, but if you’re into very light feminine smells this could be a pleasant surprise.

2ml sample.

Full size £24.99 from


Little Mix Nail Wraps - Leigh-Anne


Little Mix Nail Wraps – Leigh-Anne

I have to say I think these are absolutely vile. My disappointment only grew at finding the more alternative looking “Perrie” set so I had to remind myself that I’m bloody rubbish at applying nail wraps anyway.

Full Size.

Available for £6.00 from


So there we have it, the final Miss Glossybox of the year and overall it wasn’t a bad box at all.

It’s worth remembering that unlike most other beauty boxes, with Miss Glossybox everyone gets the same items (with occasional variety in shades) so you will get exactly what you see here.

You can order your very own Miss Glossybox for £7.00 (+ P&P) here.

Totally hellbent for that lovely christmassy red bag and the treats within!

– Gem


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