Category Archives: Beauty

21 Beauty Trends for the 90s Kids

Teen Beauty Trends from the 90sFrom magazines like Allure to beauty blogs and video tutorials, I feel like there are so many more resources available today for teenagers who want to experiment with make-up. Alas, when I was a teen my friends and I had to go it alone, with only copies of J-17 and Sugar magazine to guide us.

Whenever I went back to my parents’ home I’d always have a peek at the contents of my old chest of drawers, one drawer of which contained some choice teen make-up, including a frosted silvery blue lipstick from Boots’ 17 range, worn in homage to the lead singer of Babylon Zoo. Fortunately I only wore it a few times (probably while rocking the skirt over trousers + asymmetric sleeved top look) before I came to my senses.

So to all my fellow 20-30 somethings, if you shopped at Tammy Girl or spent your pocket money on anything with glitter in it, here are 21 beauty trends from the 90s that I’m glad are (mostly) in the past.

1. Butterfly hair clips
2. Metallic cream eyeshadow stackers from Miss Selfridge
3. Impulse body spray
4. Lilac eyeshadow
5. A ‘neutral’ palette including baby pink, purple glitter or powder blue shades
6. Crimpers – ’nuff said
7. Lip liner darker than your lipstick
8. Scrunchies
9. Anything vanilla scented from The Body Shop
10. Glitter hairspray*
11. Orange hair mascara
12. Using Sun-In and because you weren’t allowed highlights
13. Glitter eyeliner
14. Rimmel make-up packaged in burgundy and gold
15. Frosted lipstick
16. OTT black kohl eyeliner – waterline? What waterline…
17. Hard Candy nail polish
18. Wearing multiple mini buns/top knots à la Gwen Stefani
19. Body glitter
20. Woven plastic chokers
21. Chokers in general, actually

*Actually, I think I’d be ok with this now. I think it was four cans of the stuff being sprayed at any one time in the girl’s bathroom pre-school disco that put me off…

Now it’s your turn – what other 90s beauty faux pas would you add to this list?

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Shopping My Stash: The Spring Edition

Shop my stash – The Spring EditionFor a girl who doesn’t wear that much make-up, I sure seem to have accumulated quite a bit of it in recent years. Part of that is almost certainly down to reading beauty blogs but part of it is that I’m a magpie with a hoarder complex – I love shopping and I hate to throw anything away.

Obviously make-up and skincare items have a certain shelf life, but that hasn’t stopped me amassing a drawer full of lipsticks, blushers and the like. That’s why I wanted to borrow from the ‘shop my stash’ beauty blogger mantra and unearth some old favourites rather than rush out to buy new make-up that I don’t need.

And since it’s March, it’s now basically spring (hurrah!) so what better way to shop my stash than for a springtime look? Here’s what will be on my face this season…

Shopping My Stash – The Spring EditionBenefit That Gal Brightening Face Primer

I’ve been working my way through several of Benefit’s POREfessional samples recently and completely forgot all about their other primer, That Gal. It doesn’t have the same coverage as POREfessional but the flip-side is that it gives a gentle glow to the skin. I prefer to wear this on its own or mixed with a little foundation rather than underneath foundation though.

Benefit Eye Bright Pencil

Another forgotten gem from Benefit – this pale pink eye pencil is great for applying at the inner corners of the eyes and also along the waterline to give the appearance of slightly larger peepers.

MAC Pigment Pot in ‘Naked’

I’m not really an eyeshadow kind of girl but it’s something I want to experiment with more. I thought I needed to go out and by a palette or some starter shades when I remembered the MAC gift set I was given a few years ago, which I don’t think *gasp* I’ve ever used. ‘Naked’ is a neutral beige colour with a hint of shimmer, so it’s not only perfect for a subtle spring look but also for helping to ease me in to wearing eyeshadow again.

Tory Birch Beauty Lip & Cheek Tint in ‘Cat’s Meow’

I tend to stick to powder blushes so in the past I’ve mostly used this tint on my lips, but I figured since I’m going for a dewy, radiant look I should dip my toes back in the water that is cream blush. This is a tint though, so the colour pigmentation isn’t quite as strong, however it’s perfect for offering a subtle flush and negates the need for a separate highlighter.

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in ‘Sex Machine’

A pinkish nude with a hint of mauve, I bought this shade last year as part of NARS’ Guy Bourdin Promiscuous Lip Pencil Coffret, a set I’ve been neglecting a little since I got my hands on the follow-up Digital World lip pencil collection last month.

Have you ever tried shopping your make-up stash? What are your forgotten favourites?

Shopping my stash spring lookBloglovin |Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

NARS Digital World Lip Pencil Coffret review + swatches

NARS Digital World Lip Coffret When I saw the NARS Digital World lip pencil coffret in Space NK last November, I wasn’t intending to buy it. Sure it had some great shades but I thought they were a little too orange/coral toned for me, plus I did already own last year’s Guy Bourdin lip coffret so, ya know, not exactly at a loss for lip crayons/pencils over here.

But the limited edition holiday gem lingered in the back of my mind for a couple of months and when I was in need of a little pick-me-up last week I decided to see if it was still in stock on the Sephora website…

No spoilers required – it so was, I snapped one up and as there are still a few left on sale I figured I’d write a review here.

Notable differences between the sets are that last year there were four Velvet Matte Lip Pencils and only one Satin Lip Pencil, and this time the favour has fallen on the side of satin, with three pencils in this formula and only two matte pencils. The other difference is the packaging – last year the pencils came in a beautiful little make-up bag and this year they were house in a plastic case which seems less practical to me.

Three out of the five shades are also limited edition, which could be a downside if you get through lip pencils quickly, but as I don’t this doesn’t bother me too much. So, onto the reviews and swatches…

NARS Digital World Lip Pencil Coffret review and swatchesTorres del Paine

Starting with my least favourite – Torres del Paine is a satin formula and one of the limited edition shades and, although it’s nice and hydrating, the colour just doesn’t work that well on me. It’s a very pale, peachy shade and if you have a tan or darker skin then I think this would work incredibly well for you, but I think I’ll need to wait for summer before I can pull this one off.


The ‘your lips but better’ shade of the set, Descanso is another limited edition shade that would look good with a tan and would suit most skin tones. It’s a dusky nude with pink undertones (also known as ‘tea rose’, according the packaging) and the satin finish makes it a great neutral shade that I think I’ll get a lot of wear out of.


I have a lot of love for this shade, as I already own a full size version (full review here) plus a travel-size version that appeared in last year’s Guy Bourdin Lip Coffret. It’s a beautiful, deep red that makes my teeth look whiter and is incredibly long lasting. Despite this, it would have been nice to see a different red matte included in this year’s set, such as Dragon Girl or Red Square.


The second matte pencil of the bunch (and third limited edition shade) and this one’s a good ‘un. NARS describe it as an intense coral but I’d say it sits more in the reddish orange camp. It’s a long lasting, look at me colour and my second favourite pencil of the set after…


I must have taken 30-odd pictures of this swatch with every white balance option on my camera (hence the blue tinge to my skin in the swatch) and it still doesn’t do this colour justice, so take a peek at the main photo for your cue of just how intense this shade is. An incredibly bold pink fuchsia, it is a stunner and the only permanent lip pencil colour in the set, aside from Cruella.

Have you tried any of the NARS lip pencils before? Let me know if you own this set or any of the shades featured in it – which one is your favourite?

NARS Digital World lip pencil set

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Beauty Advice I’d Give My Teenage Self

Beauty advice for my teenage selfIt’s my birthday soon (ok, well, it’s not until April, but I’m already excited) and as it’s a bit of a biggie I’ve been reflecting on my approach to beauty and how it’s changed over time. I had a little rant about the ageing process last month but today I have some beauty advice for my teenage self of yesteryear. If only I could find Doc Brown and his DeLorean…

Don’t over pluck your eyebrows – I know you hate that epic black monobrow that Helga from Hey Arnold! would be proud of, but one day big brows will be back in fashion and you’ll spend ages trying to grow most of it back
Taking the time to remove make-up before bed is just common sense – it’s much better for the skin around your eyes than waking up to a glitter and kohl stained pillowcase every morning
DIY waxing of any kind will end in tears
Embrace your freckles – one day make-up companies will be selling freckles in pencil form
SPF is your friend – freckles are one thing but burnt red skin from that holiday to France won’t do you any good in the long run, even if it does give you a slight tan for the next 10 days
You are tool pale for lilac eyeshadow
Don’t be afraid of the fringe you had when you were five – it looked great then and it will look great now. Don’t wait until your 20s to have it cut back in
Lining your entire waterline in black will make your eyes look smaller, not bigger
Say no to frosted lipstick, especially that icy blue one from Boots’ 17 range – it will make you look like the lead singer of Babylon Zoo circa their Spaceman single
Accept yourself as much as possible (which is hard when you have the whole lilac eyeshadow/frosted lipstick combo going on, granted) because there’s only one of you

Those are a few beauty snippets I’d give the teenage me – what advice would you give yourself?

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My Favourite Red Lipsticks for Every Occasion

my favourite red lip coloursA red lipstick (or lip crayon, lip pencil or liquid lipstick – let’s not discriminate here) is probably my favourite make-up item of choice. While it may not be as useful as concealer or as subtle as a good mascara, it has impact; meaning, history, and glamour. Wearing a red lip is a ‘look at me’ statement, though it can also look understated, depending on how you work it.

One of my favourite ways to wear a red lip is with bare skin and just a little bit of a brow touch-up – maybe with a layer of mascara, if I want to push the boat out.

While my choice of formula or colour undertones (blue, pink, orange) may sway from time to time, there are a few reds that I always go back to. Here are the five reds I reach for every time:

For subtlety: Revlon’s Lip Butter in Candy Apple

If I want to wear a red lip that’s a little more low-key and won’t require constant reapplying, I turn to this trusty Lip Butter. I wrote a full review here when I first bought it, but suffice to say that Candy Apple is perfect for when you want a subtle hint of colour that isn’t drying on the lips.

For staying power: Sephora’s Cream Lip Stain in 01 Always Red

A recent purchase for me, Sephora’s 01 lip stain is legendary and one of the best liquid lipsticks I’ve tried. Not only is it a beautiful true, vintage pin-up red, it also doesn’t budge once applied. Bonus points for the fact that it doesn’t feel like you’re even wearing anything on your lips. Oh, and unlike some lip stains, it has staying power but also comes off easily with make-up remover (I like MERUMAYA’s Bi-Phase Plus Eye Make-Up Remover for removing liquid lipstick).

For ‘look at me’ lips: MAC’s matte finish lipstick in Ruby Woo

Does this lipstick need any introduction? It’s a blue-toned red that just makes the day that little bit better. Yes it can be drying (due to the super matte formula) but if you prep your lips ahead of time this shouldn’t be too much of an issue. I like to apply two coats of this, blotting off the excess with a tissue between layers for extra staying power. Guaranteed to turn heads and garner compliments.

For an easy to wear red: NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Monte Carlo

This liquid lipstick might look intimidating in the tube but trust me when I say it’s one of the easiest to wear reds I’ve ever tried. The colour is lighter and brighter than first impressions might suggest and the formula is soft and powdery, without feeling drying. I’ve tried several NYX Lip Creams and all of them do have a tendency to smudge easily, but it’s worth it for the intense colour and smooth application.

For fool-proof application: Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella

What is it that’s so satisfying about drawing on colour, particularly bold colour, with a lip crayon? The Velvet Matte Lip Pencils from Nars glide across the skin, pack a punch with pigmentation and are long lasting, too – what’s not to love? The shade Cruella is one of my favourites and is a deep, blood red shade that borders on burgundy. Perfect for nights out and for easy-peasy application.

Top 5 red lipsticksThose are some of my favourite red lipsticks – what are yours? I’m always looking to try new shades so let me know what I should try next!

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