Easter Giveaway: Win a Nubar nail polish or product of your choice! 10 Winners!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Now that Spring is in full bloom, I've begun to enjoy wearing nail polish again. I love bright pinks, teals and corals to accompany sunny days and bright nails are an easy way to compliment a summery outfit.

Recently I tried another Nubar polish shade and I wasn't disappointed. Caribbean Coral from the Coral Collection is described as a bright pink-purple cool toned polish. I don't personally see the purple in it, it just looks like a bright fuchsia to me! Consistency of this particular shade is thin (not watery, there's a difference), but opacity is reached with two coats.

Taken in natural light, no flash.

The lovely folk over at Feelunique.com are giving TEN Vex in the City readers the chance to win any individual Nubar nail polish or product (i.e cuticle oil) of their choice from the collections found on the Feelunique website. Take your pick from vampy purples in the Cleopatra collection to girly pinks in the Pink Rose Bouquet collection.

**Excludes the Nubar Nail Lacquer Night Sky collection 4 x 15ml set

Nubar polishes are priced from £6.80 each

Check out Feelunique's Nubar polish range here

In order to enter, just leave me a comment telling me what your favourite Spring/Summer nail shades are.

1. This giveaway is open to UK entrants (sorry)
2. One entry per person
3. The giveaway ends on Thursday 5th May 23:59 (GMT)
4. Winners will be randomly selected using Random.org

Now go and pick your favourite colour!

* This post contains an affiliate link - I will make commission from any sales made via this link.

Free Origins Face Wash - Worth £16!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

On Thursday 21 & Friday 22 April only, dash to your nearest Origins counter where you can trade in any skin care beauty product - new or old, full or empty - for a complimentary full size “Perfect World” or “Cheeks and Balances” face wash.

Counters can be found in larger Boots stores, Debenhams, John Lewis and House of Fraser branches.

You better get to a counter quick as I can envisage counters running out of stock pretty quickly as news spreads of this fab offer.

Also as part of their commitment to the planet, Origins has established a partnership with Global Releaf to plant tress to help restore areas damaged by wildfire and help clean our air and water. For every Plantscription sold during 17-30th April 2011, origins will plant a tree on the customers behalf (see website for details).


The Nail Files: Misa Toxic Seduction & OPI Only Gold For Me

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

My desk at work is fast transforming itself into a mini nail bar much to the amusement of my colleagues. I currently have approx eight nail polishes lined up neatly behind my keyboard which are sporadically applied depending how bored I am after lunch!

I own a few Misa nail polishes, one being Toxic Seduction, which is a dark bottle green shimmer. Initially it applies rather sheer and is quite runny. In fact one coat looks pretty pitiful, but it comes alive with two coats - although my preference is three due to thin consistency of the polish.

On my nails alone, I think it looks quite boring and is more suited for autumn/winter than a warm spring day, so I thought I'd jazz it up a little by applying OPI's Only Gold For Me over the top.

My colleague was quick to point out that my nails resembled "a Harrods carrier bag" (their carrier bags are bottle green and gold). I suppose it could be worse - they could resemble a Lidl carrier bag! I may revisit this combination once summer is over, but I'm looking forward to sporting a bright polish again tomorrow.

About Time! Superdrug to Launch Customer Loyalty Beautycard.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I shop in Superdrug just as much as I do in Boots and it's frustrated me no end for years, that I'm not rewarded for my purchases, the same way I am with my Boots Advantage Card.

Superdrug have finally pulled their finger out of their ear and are set to launch their own loyalty card on 11th May 2011.

 Oooh there's even a live countdown on the Superdrug website

Details surrounding it are still hush hush, but I'm intrigued all the same. It had better rival the Boots Advantage Card in terms of value, which offers four points for each pound spent. Time will tell ...

Will you be signing it for it? Who do you buy most of your toiletries/high street make up from, Superdrug or Boots?

Come Play with Nivea & ASOS and Win a Capsule Dress Collection!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Hotfoot it over to ASOS.co.uk this evening where Nivea will be teaming up with ASOS for a competition giving you chance to win a capsule collection of dresses on the ASOS website between 18th April and 31st May.

To celebrate the launch of their new “Black and White” deodorant, ASOS have created a “Timeless Collection” of black and white outfits, and in order to be one of 50 winners who'll win the collection each week, all you have to do is log onto www.asos.com/nivea and fully accessorise a dress from the Nivea collection using their new styling tool.

Nivea’s new deodorant has been named Black and white because it's designed to minimise white marks on BLACK clothing, but also yellow staining on WHITE clothing (geddit?). Its available in two fragrances – Clear and Fresh, and comes in spray and roll on versions.

To enter the competiton, log onto www.asos.com/nivea and put your inner stylista to work! Will you be one of the first 50 winners? Good luck!

* This is a sponsored post courtesy of Handpicked Media.

How Far Would You Go in the Name of Beauty?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

From one wacky treatment to another, it was recently revealed that Jennifer Lopez is preserving her good looks with no other than a facial which containts extracts of human placenta tissue.

*Excuse me as I vomit in the corner*

Yes I kid you not, Jenny From the Block boosts her glowing complexion with two placenta facials a week which set her back £700 (which probably converts to £7 in her mind). This unique treatment involves a normal cleanisng and exfoliation routine, then the placenta tissue being applied in the form of either a mask, cream or gel which is massaged into the skin.

Results are said to last three months - longer than a typical facial and further boosted as human placenta is high in protein and contains concentration of the amino acid glycine - which makes your skin appear younger and healthier and is also highly recommended for those who suffer from acne or sun damage.

Wanna be named Most Beautiful Woman in the World? Slap a placenta on your face!

As icky as this sounds, something is doing her skin the world of good as Lopez was named People Magazine's Most Beautiful Woman in the World last Wednesday! Reese Witherspoon and Madonna have also been cited as huge fans of the facial too.

If curiosity has got the better of you, then shimmy on down to Bloww Hair and Urban Spa where they're offering a 60 minute Phyto Placenta Rejuvenating Facial for £95 - not cheap, but sounds better than £700, that's for sure!

How far would you go in the name of beauty?  Placenta facial anyone?

A Fishy Tale - Orba Garra Fish Spa

Sunday, April 17, 2011

One of the slightly wackier beauty crazes to make an impact in 2010, was the introduction of Fish Pedicures. When the Garra Rufa fish, found in Turkey, were discovered to have exfoliating properties when they would swarm on swimmers and nibble away at their dry skin. They are also used to give full body treatments.

Despite how quickly this craze took off, it's never appealed to me. I'm not really one to get up close and personal with wildlife and fish with a penchant for human skin are no exception, so I took my enthusiast colleague Saini along to sample the treatment on my behalf.

The High St Kensington branch of Superdrug is the first branch to introduce this treatment to its customers, who are encouraged to place their feet or hands into a tank of fish, which then nibble away dead skin to leave skin feeling soft and exfoliated.

Located downstairs, the fish live in two treatment tanks filled with clean, cold water, which is not only filtered but also has UV light sterilisation. The pedicure is painless with feet feeling a ticklish sensation.

Saini took to the treatment literally like a fish to water - and here's what she thought of it:

"I was pleasantly surprised about the fish pedicure. My first impression was that the concept of having fish nibbling on your feet was just that... fish nibbling on your feet! As I dipped my feet in, the fish rushed towards them, and I felt a strange sensation of picking under my feet. Since I am a fan of awkward things, I did enjoy the experience and envisioned it would be even more fun to be sitting next to a friend having a lunchtime chat and randomly laughing at the idea of fish at our feet! I must say I was quite surprised to find my feet did feel softer after my 20 minutes.

A couple of things could have been done to improve the overall experience however: a finishing moisturising foot cream should have been applied to add a final touch instead of my feet being wiped with a towel and put back into my boots. And also, since the fish aren't professional pedicurists(!) they could have buffed the soles of my feet to even out the smooth skin."

After the fish spa, feet or hands are indeed meant to rinsed, massaged and moisturised. I think due to the hilarious situation we found ourselves in (keep reading), this aspect of the treatment was prematurely overlooked.

Fellow beauty blogger Lina, of Make Up to Make Out was also on hand to try the treatment, whose reaction had us all in hysterics. Check it out for yourself ...

Don't expect miraculous results, as Saini points out, they're fish, not trained professionals but If you're open minded to trying an unconventional treatment for a bit of fun (and aren't scared of fish) then this may be up your street costing just £10 for 10 minutes and £15 for a 20 minute treatment.

Have you tried a fish pedicure? What were your thoughts? Would you like to try one for yourself?

*Treatment provided by PR

Flash Blog Sale!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

It's blog sale time again! Out with the unloved and in with the new!

Huge thanks to Rowena over at Cosmetic Candy, who's allowed to me nick some of her blog sale rules as I couldn't be assed to type my own out after sifting through make up and taking/uploading pics for most of yesterday evening!! Preparing for a blog sale iS tiresome!!!


1. Please make sure you include your PAYPAL email address in the comments box so I can send you your invoice right away. I will be taking payments via Paypal only.

2. Be sure to state whether you're based in the UK or overseas.

3. Please make sure a VALID POSTAL ADDRESS is included with your paypal payment, I don’t have time to email everyone to get them to verify their home address.  If you know that your Paypal address is different to the delivery address, no problem, email me or say so in the comment – but let me know ASAP

4. After invoicing items will be held for 24 hours only before going to the next bidder.  Items count as sold once payment is received.

5. Please check swatches etc. etc before ordering as there are no returns.

5. Items are sold as seen, all authentic, condition is as stated please ask if unsure.

6. Sanitation where applicable, is the buyers responsibility. Although I will clean up packaging with anti-bacterial wipes.

7. Postage Costs – Recorded/Tracked only and is calculated on a parcel to parcel basis.  International Airmail Recorded is a minimum of around £6.50 (about $10). UK Recorded mail will be £3.50. Postage is based on genuine costs plus packaging (jiffy bags and bubble wrap don't fall out of the sky) and handling fees – postage will be combined where there are multiple purchases.

 Sephora Moroccan Sunrise e/s palette (LE). Used twice - £12 SOLD

Make Up For Ever Diamond Cream - Used twice - £14 (RRP £26)

NARS blush in Ninotchka (discontinued) - Used twice - £14 (RRP £20.50) SOLD

MAC Breath of Plum. 70% left - £9
MAC Serenely Beauty Powder blush (LE). Used twice. £12
 MAC Style Demon (LE). Used twice. £12

Bobbi Brown Sheer Color Cheek Tint in Sheer Pink. Used twice - £12
Bobbi Brown Sheer Color Cheek Tint in Sheer Blackberry. Used twice - £12 SOLD

 MAC Dazzleglass in Stop! Look! (LE) Used once. £7
MAC Dazzleglass in Goldyrocks (LE) - Used twice £6

MAC Mineralize e/s in Polar Opposite (LE). Swatched once. £10
MAC Metal-X Cream e/s in Plum Electric - £7

MAC Liberty of London l/s in Ever Hip (LE). Used three times. £8 SOLD

Illamsqua Illuminator in Glimmer. Swatched twice. £6

NYX Goddess of the Night lipglosses
Natural. Used twice. £2 SOLD
Candy Shop. Swatched once. £2.50
Gold Pink. Swatched once. £2.50

Sleek Eye Dust - So Sleek. Swatched once. £3
Sleek Eye Dust - Fantasy. Swatched once. £3
Both for £5

Barry M Fine Glitter Dust - 24. Unused. £2
Barry M Dazzle Dust - 81. Unused. £2
Barry M Dazzle Dust - 22. 70% left. £1
Barry M Fine Glitter Dust - 15. Unused £2
Barry M Dazzle Dust - 3. Unused £2

Top row:
MAC Entremauve pigment sample. Swatched once - £2
MAC Reflects Gold. Swatched once - £3 SOLD

Bottom row:
Ben Nye pigment in Silver. Swatched once - £2
Ben Nye pigment in Amythest. Swatched once - £2

Elemis to Launch Fresh Skin ...For Young Skin.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Elemis are launching a brand new, affordable skincare range aimed at those in their teens to mid twenties, which they hope will encourage users to invest in a trusted skincare range in order to nurture their skin, whilst helping to prevent premature ageing

The range consists of nine products which are:
  • Make Up Away Cleansing Wipes (25) £8
  • Peachy Perfect Gentle Face Wash 100ml £12
  • Skin Glow Exfoliating Face Wash 100ml £12
  • Softly Softly Daily Moistuiser 50ml £20
  • Dreamy Sleep Night-Time Moisturiser 50ml £22
  • Tired Eyes Soothing Eye Rescue 15ml £15
  • Loving Lips Quenching Lip Balm 10ml £8
  • Face Mask Duo Deep Clean and Magical Moisture 6 x 7ml £15
Each product is formulated with active raw ingredients, such as elderflower, rosehip seed oil, apple, geranium and blackcurrant and combined with skin friendly bases specifically chosen for their ability to cleanse, exfoliate, brighten and keep skin looking fresher for longer.

At first glance, I'm rather liking the bright packaging which is eye catching, without being fussy. It'll be interesting to see how this line compares in quality against Elemis' main skincare line which is of a much higher price point.

I've enlisted the help of Stephanie, the blogger behind Nerd About Town, to put the products through their paces - although I'll be trialling the wipes and lip balm myself. Keep your eyes peeled for a review soon.

The line launches online at www.elemis.com/freshskin on 14th April 2011.

Oops I did it again - Recent Beauty Buys.

Monday, April 04, 2011

I've been quite choosy about beauty purchases lately. I guess you could say I've reached saturation point with my make up collection and don't really feel I need to add much else to it. It's been fun 'collecting' new products and picking favourite shades and finishes, but my days of weekly 'hauling' are over.

My excessive hauling days may be nothing more than a humorous memory, but that's not to say that I don't have my moments where I still get a little overzealous and overindulgent. What can I say, it's the beauty addict in me!

Here are some of the products I've purchased recently:

 Lucas Pawpaw Ointment

Alongside products such as Lanolips, Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, and Pure Papaya, you'll also find Lucas Pawpaw Ointment. A multi-purpose balm which tackles grazes, sunburn, chaffing, burns, cracked skin and even nappy rash. For £4.50 for a 25g tube gives me enough product to last a good while. I bought this from the Cult Beauty pop up shop which was set up in Selfridges. It's a handy little product to have in my handbag.

BECCA Skin Perfector in Bronze

I've wanted this product for the longest time, but the shade Bronze had been discontinued. Huge thanks go out to the lovely lady who handles the UK BECCA Twitter account, who managed to track one down for me, in the theatrical make up superstore Charles Fox, in Covent Garden and also to Get Lippie, (no that's not her real name) who was kind enough to pick it up and post it to me at work as I had no time to pick it up myself. The BECCA skin perfectors are supposed to be some of the best luminisers in the industry. I've had no time to play with it properly, but will make a point of wearing it to work tomorrow! Expect a follow up post on this, later in the week.

Tweezerman Pointed Tweezers

The only tweezers I'll use. I don't like slanted varieties, I find they don't get all the stray hairs out. I misplaced my favourite purple pointed Tweezersman and need a quick replacement, so bought these off Ebay for £11. They're easy to use, yanking out the teeniest of hairs and come with a lifetime resharpening guarantee - not that I've ever used it. I don't have the patience to send them to New York to be resharpened, when you can probably take them to a key cutter down the road! This must be my 5th pair now - love 'em.

Murad Night Reform Glycolic Treatment

A discount code offering 50% off landed in my inbox a couple of weeks ago, for Strawberrynet.com which was too good an offer to turn my nose up at, so I indulged myself and purchased this from Murad which has excellent reviews. Having become somewhat obsessed of late about waking up and looking far older than my years, I invested in this night treatment which is clinically proven to improve the firmness of your skin by 28% and stimulate cell renewal. I'm willing my skin to revert back to normal, so that I can start slapping this on it!

BECCA Cream Blush/Bronzer Brush #34

Another purchase I made from strawberrynet.com was the Becca Creme Blush/Bronzer Brush. I've been curious about this for a while, but the price tag (£34) was off putting. Purchasing it half price wasn't so bad so. When it arrived, I took a sharp intake of breath, for at first glance it looked as if they'd sent me an eyeliner instead - that's how small the box is! Closer inspection revealed it was in fact the brush! I haven't had a chance to try it yet but reviews over on Makeupalley.com are promising. I have quite a few cream blushes and now that the weather's warming up I'll be pulling them out of hibernation this week. Yes, I can use my fingers or my MAC 187 or 131 brush, but my blushes deserve the best and this brush supposedly makes cream blush application a dream - although after fondling it upon arrival, I wasn't overly impressed. Hmm we'll see ... I must mention the speed at which my order arrived. I placed my order late last Saturday night and it was with me on Tuesday. Wahey!

 ELF Tinted Moisturiser with SPF 20

I have to say that I'm pleasantly surprised by this. I bought Expresso (for dark skin with yellow and red undertoens) fully expecting it to be too light for my skin tone, but it matches my skin perfectly. I had to do a double take in the mirror! I find the coverage to be better than the MAC tinted moisturiser I used to own (which has now been discontinued). This actually gives my skin coverage - in fact it can pass for a foundation!  It's a shame it doesn't go any darker. I'll definitely be repurchasing this again. I've used it daily since I bought it. Only £3.50 and comes with SPF20 too - bargain!

Have you tried any of these products and what have you been buying lately?

(I'm now on a strict spending ban cos I'm going away with the Mr in a few weeks. No more make up/skincare purchases for a while!)

The Winner of the Model Mirror is ....

Sunday, April 03, 2011

There's an email waiting in your inbox for you.

Thank you to all who entered. I have another giveaway coming up shortly!

Current Skincare Regime

Sunday, April 03, 2011

My skin's still an absolute mess at the moment and I've been forced to completely change my skincare routine until it gets back on track. I'm being good, taking my make up off at night and drinking lots of water, and still, it's acting up like a b*tch!

Below are the products I've been using lately, although I suspect I'll be switching a couple as of this evening.

1. Murad Time Release Acne Cleanser - £29 *
Murad have launched a new Anti-Ageing Blemish line for adults struggling with acne. It aims to restore a youthful complexion while diminishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Sounds like the perfect combo for me! The Time Release Acne Cleanser is a cross between a cleansing gel and lotion, which foams up ever so slightly and claims to kill bacteria on contact. I use this morning and night, don't find this drying in the slightest and particularly enjoy the cooling effect it leaves on the skin once I've rinsed it off. I believe that's down to the tea tree and salicylic acid in it.

2.Origins Ginzing - £20
Since using up Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Eye Recovery Complex (good grief, what a mouthful!), I've purchased Origins Ginzing. I've been using it for about two months now and really like it. It's moisturising and easy to absorb, however it targets puffiness, dark circles and bags and I need an eye cream with anti-ageing properties too so I'm on the look out for another eye cream to use in conjunction with this.

3. Guinot Shine Control Toning Lotion - £16.50
I stumbled upon this toner whilst researching another Guinot product which had been recommended to me by an old work colleague. My skin often appears shiny by midday, and I'm not really one to touch up five times a day, I just don't have the time to keep peering in a mirror! Designed for oily skin, this toner promises to reduce surface shine and refine pores. I sweep this over my nose and cheeks which are my oily areas and My skin doesn't look as shiny as it usually does half way through the day. Unfortunately I'm not keen on the smell, you can really smell the alcohol in this - in fact it smells just like the alcohol I use for pressing my eye shadow pigments! I fear in the long run, this will prove to be too harsh for my skin, although I haven't reacted to it or experienced or dryness. I purchased mine on Ebay for about £12

4. Murad Anti-Ageing Moisturiser SPF20 £46.50 *
In the past, I found moisturisers aimed at blemished skin to be quite drying, but I've been using this every morning (also from the Anti-Ageing Blemish line) for about a fortnight and haven't ditched it for another yet. It's supposed to minimiser blemishes and oil production, something which I hope it   Impressively, the SPF doesn't leave an unsightly white cast on my skin either which I've experienced from some moisturisers containing SPF. It's not cheap, and for that reason alone, I wouldn't repurchase unless it was on offer.

5. Alpha H Liquid Gold £31.50*
To be fair, I haven't used this as often as I should be in order to see the effects (if any) that it gives. On the random nights that I have, I squirt the liquid (consistency is like that of a toner) onto a cotton wool pad and sweep it over my face. You can use a moisturiser afterwards, but for an intensive treatment, skip your night cream and leave it to do its magic. In as little as a week you can expect to see brighter, firmer abd clearer skin. Sounds too good to be true right? It's Alpha H's best selling product, so that gives me some hope! I fully expected to wake with my face feeling dry and tight, but nope, it felt absolutely fine. I think starting from tonight I'll use this every two days (it's recommended you use this on alternate nights) and see what happens. It can also be used as an effective treatment for acne when used in conjunction with other Alpha-H products. Oh and a heads up, you may experience tingling when you put it on your face - it's to be expected and subsides with regular use.

6. The DoctorBrand Spot Eliminator - £6.95*
Designed to shrink spots as they appear and calm skin, this light lotion is recommended for use up to three times a day on the affected area(s). I use it both morning and night but haven't noticed a marked improvement and will be replacing this with Murad Acne Spot Treatment as soon as I can find it. Perhaps it would work better in conjunction with the rest of the Blemish Relief Starter Kit.

7. All For Eve Age Delay Facial Oil Created by Alpha H - £44
All For Eve have joined forced forces with Alpha H who have created a facial oil in support of The Eve Appeal Gynaecology Cancer Research Fund. I like to use this at night in place of a moisturiser when I want to rehydrate my skin. It contains kernel and rosehip oil to soften and aid dehydrated and mature skins. It's a lovely product, and I wake with my skin feeling nice and soft but I'm under no illusion that I can probably get the same effects from cheaper facial oils on the market - or from plain old almond oil which you can pick up for as little as £3.

I've suffered from pigmentation scarring on my cheeks since the age of 13 or so when I started to break out as many teenagers do. My Mum and Aunt have the same scarring so I guess it's hereditary. I'd rather it not be there, but I'm used to it, barely noticing it now. It's the cluster of spots on my cheek, chin and along my jawline that I've suffered from ever since that godforsaken facial I had in February which are really getting on my last nerve. My skin's 'angry' and I don't know why.

I've started using the Clarisonic again, on average around four times a week. I no longer use it to cleanse twice a day, every day for fear of aggravating my skin further. It's helped with the abrasions felt across my forehead caused by a weird rash that broke out a fortnight ago. see? This crap is never-ending!

I'm over the worse of the breakouts that have erupted all over my face in recent weeks (yes, believe it or not my face was even worse the snapshot photo depicts), but I'm now now left with red, blotchy scarring and more dark blemishes caused by old spots than I've suffered from in a very long time.

The state of my skin at the moment sans make up - not impressed.

My skin is reminiscent to how it was in my teens ..erm hello, I turn 30 in July, what the devil is going on?! Thank God for make up!!

Here's hoping I see an improvement by the end of the month *sighs*

*Product(s) were received for review consideration at a press event.

Changing Faces: No 7 Illuminated Make-Up Mirror

Saturday, April 02, 2011

During Christmas I took advantage of the Boots sale and bought the No 7 Illuminated Make Up Mirror which had been reduced to £25. Once again I used Boots Order and Collect service, which enabled me to pick it up free from the branch of my choice, instead of paying the £2.95 delivery charge.

I've always wanted a magnifying mirror and this offers 5x magnification which shows up every pore, blemish, crevice and all manner of other things you never knew were sitting on your face! I was totally obsessed, staring at close ups of my skin constantly, days after it had arrived. The magnifying feature is perfect for plucking stray hairs from unruly eyebrows. It's amazing how many hairs you miss when using an ordinary mirror.

For every day make up application, just flip it over to reveal a standard mirror - both sides have 360 degree lighting around it, but I rarely use this feature as I find the lighting to be quite dull - although I think it's meant to have a softening effect. I prefer to use it in natural daylight, that works best for me. Because I rarely switch it on, I find the mains lead a bit of a hindrance and wish it could be removed.

Overall, I'm pleased with my purchase. Do I think it's worth the RRP of £51.05 - no sirree! But for £25 (well £25.52 now, damn that pesky 2.5% VAT increase), you have a dual mirror with an excellent magnifying feature for your money.

Good news - it's been reduced to half price again on the Boots site, so if you've been umming and ahhhing over this, then now's a great time to buy it.


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