Thursday, 17 July 2014

SauceBox Cosmetics Étude Palette Review & Swatches.

I am always interested in discovering new indie makeup brands especially ones that are cruelty free, I stumbled upon SauceBox Cosmetics whilst watching a YouTube makeup tutorial from BATALASH BEAUTY that featured the Étude palette and I instantly knew that I needed this palette in my life.
I am quite surprised that I hadn't heard of SauceBox cosmetics prior to seeing the video as the company has been around since 2010, founded by a mother and daughter with a passion for makeup and a goal to produce high quality makeup without the high price. The Étude palette is $50 which came to around £30. (There were shipping costs and a customs charge but I can't remember how much.) I think that is incredibly good value considering that each shadow is 4 grams of product which is huge compared to MAC shadows. It only took me about five minutes after watching it featured on Batalash to place an order. The thought of it going out of stock was not something I was willing to risk.
 The packaging and design of the Étude palette is a work of art in itself. I love the illustration of the girl. She also appears in SauceBox's other palettes feasting a different hair colour for each palette which I think is a very nice touch. I love when a lot of thought goes into a company's branding.
The Étude palette is described as 'Your ultimate matte neutral palette. Packing fantastic pigmentation, it is perfectly color coordinated to take your day look to night. Colors can be used for contour and eyebrows. This palette will take over your kit!' 
 Here are the beautiful colours in the pans. I was sold on this palette as soon as I saw the deep reddish brown shade 'biscotti' All the shades are stunning and I knew it would work so well with the rest of makeup as I have been needing some good neutral matte shadows, I find matte makeup palettes with decent pigmentation so hard to come by, at least in the UK.
Here are the colours swatched on my arm. I used my fingers to swatch the colours with 2 swipes each. The shades are all very pigmented and you would obviously get a much stronger effect if using over a primer, I am not however a big fan on using primers on my eyes. I think that the colour 'Caramel' is the best quality eyeshadow, it is so creamy and easy to work with, at first I thought this wouldn't be a favourite of mine since the colour didn't look so eye-catching in the pan but as soon as I used it I fell in love. When I use these eyeshadows on my eyes I find that a little goes a long way and considering how much product you get I think this palette will last me a very long time. Overall brilliant value for money and the Étude palette is already a firm favourite in my humble makeup collection.

The Étude palette is currently sold your but you can sign up to be notified when it's back in stock here.



Monday, 14 July 2014

BIRCHBOX UK July 2014

 Since receiving my first BirchBox last month I have been so excited to find out what was going to be in the July edition. I was really pleased with everything I received last month but after seeing some July previews online I was even more excited to see what was going to be in my box this month.
 I did cheat a little and have a sneaky look on my online profile to find out what products were going to be in my box and I was not disappointed! This month's theme is 'Sun, Sea and Sand'
I haven't been on holiday or to the beach in many years, it's not really my scene although I do have fond memories of beach holidays in France from my childhood so maybe this box will help me to relive those this summer. And is has been lovely and summery here in Leeds the past few days so I decided to open my BirchBox on my apartment building's roof terrace.
 WHISH Three Whishes Lavender Body Butter (RRP £14.50)
The first item in my box is a body butter by a brand I have not heard of before called Whish. I am quite conscious of what I use on my skin as I suffer from eczema and find it hard to find products that work for me without flaring up my skin. My eczema has been calming down recently so I am interested to see how this works for me. It is a sweet-scented antioxidant-rich lotion that claims to nourish skin. I do really like the scent, it is what I expect lavender cupcakes to smell like. Not the granny-knickers lavender smell so many people aren't dislike. I look forward to trying this product out after I shower.

 LAQA & Co. Sheer Lip Lube Pencil in MENATOAUR (RRP £14)
The second item in my July BirchBox is by another brand I have no previous knowledge of; LAQA & co. The product is called 'Lip Lube' which I find quite amusing and I was really excited to receive this. I think the colour is gorgeous and I don't own anything like it. I am one of those people who rarely wears lip products but collects them anyway because they look pretty. I am trying to get into the swing of wearing colour on my lips so I can't wait to try this one out.
 Benefit The Porefessional (RRP £24.50)
When I told my sister I had signed up for BirchBox, the first thing she said was that if I ever receive a Benefit Porefessional sample I have to give it to her. I have heard a lot of people rave about this product as well as some negative reviews. I am eager to try it out before giving it to my sister to see what all the fuss is about. I have quite a few blackheads on my nose which I have always been quite conscious about so I would like to see if this helps to make them disappear. Benefit is a brand I am familiar with, I own one blush by them 'Hervana' which I love so much I wrote a song about it! It is nice to see such a well known brand and a generous size sample of such a hyped product in the BirchBox.
 Models Own Nail Polish in 'Sparkler' (RRP £5)
Models Own is a brand which I have seen around and heard a lot about but never gotten around to purchasing anything from them. This is a clear polish with holographic glitter strands. I think this is a pretty polish but I probably won't use this. I would however like to try out some of their polishes in the future.
 BALANCE ME Wonder Eye Cream (RRP £20)
Another brand I have never come across before. I have had very prominent dark circles since childhood which I have learnt to live with, nothing ever really covers them and I am so pale anyway my skin is quite transparent. I have tried the Garnier eye roll on before but never had much success. I am interested to see if this 'wonder eye cream' does anything to help my dark circles. it claims to brighten the eye area and keep wrinkles at bay. I don't really have eye-wrinkles just yet but I am looking forward to trying this product out and seeing how it works.
 FILOSOFILLE 4-Sided Nail Buffer.
I don't take very good care of my nails, I am guilty of biting them when I get stressed and I have been very stressed lately. This nail buffer has four sides that do different jobs. I find this product very confusing as I have never had a professional manicure so I don't know all the technicalities of nail buffing but I am sure I will work it out.
I love living in Candle House, it is such a luxury to have access to the community roof terrace and the only 360 degree view of Leeds.
Here is a swatch of the LAQA & CO. Lip Lube on the back of my hand. It is a beautiful violet shade of purple. Very smooth and moisturising. I will probably try this out on my lips tomorrow.

Overall I am very happy with my BirchBox this month, I think the subscription is such good value for only £10 + postage. I don't try products outside of my comfort zone very often so this is great for me to discover new brands. I also think the points system is great, I almost have 100 points already which is equivalent to £10 to spend in the BirchBox shop.

If you like what is in the July UK BirchBox and are thinking of signing up, you can earn 50 points (worth £5) by signing up here: http://birchbox.co.uk/?raf=48551