Sunday, 30 June 2013

What's In My Handbag?

The wonderful people over at (here) are curious to find out what the average person has in their handbag and how much it is worth. MoneySupermarket actually estimate that the average ladies handbag (including the bag itself and the contents within it) is worth over £850. Therefore, they are running a competition where us bloggers show them what's in our handbag, how much it all amounts up to and in return we could win a luxury prize from Mulberry consisting of a Bayswater handbag, a purse and a phone cover in the colour of our choice! Six lucky runner-ups will also win a £25 ASOS voucher! If you would like to enter this competition, full details about how to enter and the prize can be found here

One of my weaknesses in life is designer handbags. I just love them and I can waste a fair amount of time watching designer handbag unboxings and what's in my bag videos on YouTube. When I found out about this amazing competition that's being held by MoneySupermarket, it's safe to say that I got a little lot excited! If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you will probably know that I am actually thinking about getting a Mulberry Bayswater so this competiton is perfect for me! It only made sense that I entered!!

I have never shown you all what I carry around with me on a day to day basis so this generous competition has given me the perfect excuse to do so. I am currently carrying around my Louis Vuitton Speedy 35 in Monogram and I absolutely love it! This bag is most definitely my baby, I've had it for just over a year now and it's staring to Patina nicely.

Louis Vuitton Speedy's only have one pocket inside them. Therefore, the main part of the bag is just a wide open space that can fit a lot inside it! A lot of Louis Vuitton fans refer to the inside of a Speedy as being like a 'black hole' because it's so wide and open and this is what often puts people off the bag. I don't mind the way that the bags designed, personally, I really like it.

Inside the main section of the bag...

- Radley Key ring attached the D ring located inside bag (pictured above): Around £20.00
- Louis Vuitton Speedy 35: £520.00 (current retail price)
- Louis Vuitton Small personalised Lugage Tag: Around £40.00 (current retail price)
- Purple Base Shaper: Came inside a free Vera Wang perfume GWP bag
- Silver Heart Oyster Card Holder: Primark £1.50 with £10 on Oyster
- Carex Hand Gel: £1.45
- Pink Umbrella: M&S around £10.00 (actually my auntie's, not mine)
- Black Tigger Umbrella: Disney Store £18 (price based on the current selling price, as this was bought years ago)
- Dolce & Gabbana glasses: Purchased last year for £190
- Blue inhaler for Asthma: £7.85 (current charge for a prescription in the UK)
- Rayban Wayfarer sunglasses: £120.00
- Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses: £190.00
- Purple Harrods Purse: £20 with £40 cash inside
- iPhone 5 headphones and white iPhone 5 (not pictured as this it what I used to take the pictures): £529.00

Inside the one and only pocket that's inside the Speedy...

- Strawberry Carmex: Primark £2.00
- YSL Sheer Candy No4: Debenhams £24.50
- Random bus tickets and receipts
- 1 Ibuprofen and 1 Zantac tablet
- Strip of Ibuprofen (given to me by my mum)
- Strip of Rennies (from a pack of 72): £5.29
- Small sterling Silver pill box: £20
- Memory stick: Around £10 (only a small memory one)
Loose change: £1.07

SUB TOTAL (including bag) = £1772.81

I do have the receipts, an extra umbrella and an extra pair of sunglasses in my bag that I don't actually need. However, this is a true representation of what's actually in my bag. I didn't clear it out before I took these pictures. I hate it when people do that because it's not actually showing what's in their bag! I am quite a tidy person when it comes to my bag because I like to look after my Louis! Although I am a beauty blogger, I don't carry around a makeup bag with me. This may be surprising to you considering I love makeup, but I just cannot be bothered carrying around spare makeup and touching up my face during the day. I just wear makeup that lasts!
I hope that you have enjoyed having a nosey at what's inside my bag! If anyone has any questions about anything that's inside it or would like me to do a review of my Speedy 35 please leave a comment below and I will get back to you!

A big thank you to for giving a lucky blogger the chance
to win three amazing Mulberry prizes and good luck to everyone else
who has entered!!

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Don't forget that if you want to enter this competition, your entry must be emailed to them by midnight on Monday 1st July 2013. Full details about the competition and where to send the email too can be found here.

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Clarins Splendours Summer Bronzing Compact

I really like love bronzers and I don't feel myself if I haven't contoured my cheekbones and created the illusion of having a smaller/slimmer face than I actually do! I'm a super pale girl and sometimes finding the perfect bronzer can be a bit of nightmare. They're often too orange based, brown based or just quite simply aimed at someone who has a skin tone that's considerably darker than the one I have (I find a lot of bronzers are perfectly suited to medium-dark skin tones). When I first started wearing bronzer I felt as though I was completely out of my depth, as finding the perfect bronzer can prove to be a difficulty task to anyone; especially when you have the skin tone of a ghost. If you're a pale girl looking for the perfect bronzer for the summer months I did a quick and simple guide to the bronzers that I have used here.

A few months ago, I noticed my Instagram and blog feeds filled with posts and pictures of the Clarins summer 2013 makeup collection. This collection was called the Splendours Collection and was absolutely amazing! I distinctly remember seeing the Pixiwoo's upload a picture on Instagram of a stunning bronzing compact and it was love. Everything about the bronzer was absolutely stunning and it didn't take me long to discover some more photos and blog posts on the Clarins Splendours Summer Bronzing Compact.

Before buying this bronzer, I had never bought or used anything from Clarins before and I have to admit that I'd always thought their products were aimed at people who were older than I am. Despite not knowing much about them, I knew that their skincare items were meant to be very good, they were high end and their products were expensive. As much as I loved the bronzing compact, I didn't know if I could justify paying it's £30 price tag. I read a few reviews on the Splendours collection, spoke to a few other beauty bloggers and decided that I would go and have a look at the bronzer in person. I seen it, swatched it, fell in love and bought it; just like that!

The first thing that caught my attention was the amazing Aztec design that was on the front of this compact. I think everyone loves a bit of Aztec print and especially on a summer product; it's very appropriate. I love the burnt deep orange'y, red and brown shades that have been used. I think the design of the 2013 Summer Bronzing Compact is amazing and definitely a selling point. Finally, I noticed how big H U G E the compact actually was. This is definitely a whopper of a product. 

The bronzing powder itself is also stunning. The Aztec design is etched on top of the powder but unfortunately doesn't continue through the product; it's just on the top and will disappear with use. The bronzer itself is made up of two colours: a true brown typical bronzer shade and a slightly lighter colour. The two main colours that make up the bronzer are matte which is a big requirement for a bronzer (typically, shimmery/pearly bronzers just do not look very flattering). In the centre of the bronzer, there is an orange section with the Clarins 'C' logo embossed into it. This powder is in fact shimmery and so I do not use it at all. I tried using it as an eyeshadow but I didn't like the colour on me but that's just my personal opinion. On dark skin tones, I think that the centre of this product would make an amazing highlighter; super shimmery and complements the bronzer perfectly. 

As I said before, the compact is absolutely huge. It doesn't look that big in the photos I have taken but if you see this in store you will see how big it is! It comes in nice sturdy packaging, has a big mirror that's big enough to be used for on the go makeup application and you get a very generous amount of powder. The price of the Splendours Summer Bronzing Compact is £30.00 which does seem a little steep. However, when you take into account that you only get 8g of product in something such as NARS Laguna which costs £26.00 and a whopping 20g in this compact the price tag doesn't seem to steep!

The only issue that I have with this product is that I feel as though it's slightly dark. I feel as though it is very orange based (as you can see from the heavy swatch below) and I feel as though it looks a little too much against my pale skin tone (you can see how white I am, in the picture below). The bronzing powder is super pigmented and to ensure I don't end up looking like one of Willy Wonkas Oompah Loompah's I only tap my brush into this product 2 or 3 times at the most. I don't like a super obvious contour because I'm so pale and the colour contract would just look ridiculous so I only apply a small amount. As you can from the photo below the bottom swatch) the bronzer does sheer out and isn't as intense when it's applied using a brush. To further ensure that this bronzer blends seamlessly in with my makeup I apply the product and then blend over it with my foundation to make sure there are no harsh lines visible. 

This product is rather orange based and I really do have to be careful with how much I apply but I think super pale girls can still get away with wearing it. The bronzer seems to be a pretty universal shade and is perfect for people looking for a high end product that's amazing value for money, a unique compact design, lots of product, a fine powder that's effortless to blend, something that's going to give them a healthy bronzed goddess glow or just cheekbones they've always dreamed of. 

What do you think of this bronzer? Did you pick up anything from the
Clarins Splendours Summer 2013 collection?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Monday, 24 June 2013

Dainty Doll Cream Blush - Review

Until a few months ago, I had never tried anything from Dainty Doll. It was only whilst I was scouring the Fragrance Direct website back in March of this year (you can see what I bought herethat I discovered them and decided to pick up a few products. Recently the beauty blogosphere seems to be full of Dainty Doll reviews and features as there are a lot of websites selling the products for amazing prices. I don't know why the range is being sold in discount stores but it is raising suspicions amongst us beauty bloggers  and making us think that the makeup range is being discontinued?

For those of you who have never heard of Dainty Doll before, it was created by Nicola Roberts from Girls Aloud. I remember when the band first started to become 'big' and Nicola would always be really fake tanned trying to masque her pale skin. Thankfully, she started to embrace her pale complexion and created a makeup range aimed at other pale girls. 

This Dainty Doll cream blusher was my first ever cream blush and I thought I would give it a try. I always thought that cream blushes looked really hard to apply and like they took a lot of practise. I was worried I'd be a cream blush novice and end up looking like a circus clown. Fragrance Direct were selling these lovely pale blushes for £1.99 each and for that price I snapped it up straight away. Even if I hated using a cream blush, I hadn't wasted loads of money. 

As you can see from the photo above, the packaging of this product is very simple. All of the products in the Dainty Doll range have simple packaging and although this isn't quite as stunning as some cosmetics packaging I really like it. The packaging doesn't feel amazing sturdy (it isn't quite NARS) but it doesn't feel as though it's going to break on first use. The compact also has a mirror on the lid that is a really nice size and is perfect for on the go makeup application or touch ups. 

Dainty Doll Cream Blusher - 001

I have never used a cream blusher before so I can't really compare this to anything else. However, I am really impressed with the formula. Although it feels a bit waxy, it isn't impossible to work with and you can either apply this product with a brush (I like to use my Real Techniques Stippling Brush) or with your fingers. I find that using your fingers gives a really nice subtle pink glow as the heat from your fingers warms up the product and sheers it out slightly. 

Top = Heavy swatch.
Middle = Applied with fingers.
Bottom = Applied with stippling brush.

I really like this colour! As you can see from the photo above, I am really pale. When you're a pale girl, blusher is definitely a must have thing in your makeup bag. It stops you looking ill or dead and instead makes you look healthy. Often when you're pale, foundation can make you complexion appear a bit too flat and you just need something to perk it up a bit. This blush does that perfectly!
The only negative things that I have to say about this cream blusher is that it smells really waxy. Every time I apply it I feel as though I'm rubbing a wax crayon onto my face. If you're not one for products that have a rather distinct smell then I really wouldn't recommend this product. Secondly, because the formula is quite waxy, little fibres from your brush can get stuck in it (as you can see from the photo below) and if you're anything like me that will really annoy you. Finally, although I don't mind the plain packaging it might not be appealing to some beauty fans. If you're a fan of extravagant product packaging this might not appeal to you or grab your attention.

On the whole, this cream blusher is easy to apply, compliments my skin tone well, is the perfect colour for pale girls, can be applied sheer to give a subtle healthy glow or heavier for a more blushed look, perks the skin up, works well with fingers or a brush, is an absolute bargain and lasts really well on the skin! As I said, I got this cream blusher from Fragrance Direct and it only cost £1.99. I made a huge saving on it as I think they would usually retail in somewhere like Boots for around £8/£9. Despite the few negative comments that I have included within this review I cannot complain, for £1.99 I think it is an absolute gem, I would definitely repurchase it and I have been converted to cream blushers - they're not as scary as I first thought!

Have you tried any of the Dainty Doll cream blushes?
Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Friday, 21 June 2013

Shu Uemura eye lash curlers - First Impressions!

Shu Uemura eye lash curlers are one of those things that every beauty blogger either has in their makeup bag or wants to have in it. They're probably the most iconic and best known eye lash curlers out there. I have always wanted to try them but have been terrified that I would use them wrong and cause myself a nasty eye injury.

After I seen the Pixiwoo's and a few other YouTube'rs using some gold eye lash curlers I was in love and when I found out they were Shu Uemura I really wanted to get myself a pair. I think I said this in my May Haul (which you can see here) but I was going to get myself a cheap pair of eye lash curlers from Boots. However, I wasn't really keen on getting a really cheap pair because I didn't want to ruin my eyelashes so I made a spur of the moment purchase in Selfridges and picked up these beautiful curlers - I'm so glad I did!

The classic silver curlers are really nice but I prefer the gold much more. I think they look so luxurious and I was just drawn to them straight away. I have a lot of gold jewellery and I just adore it; getting the gold pair made perfect sense and they're also limited edition! I don't know about you, but when I see something is limited edition, I feel as though I have to have it. 

These stunning eye lash curlers:

- Are Limited Edition.
- Made from 24 Carat Gold.
- Are a perfect treat or present for any makeup lover.
- Actually work and are not a gimmick.
- Are easy to use.
- Look beautiful in a makeup bag or out on display.
- Are good quality.
- Come with a spare silicone refill pad
- Really do make a difference to your eye lashes.
- Give me a dramatic false lash effect without having to go through the fuss of applying false lashes.
- Good value for money as they are known to last for years and years when looked after properly.
- Feature improved design and performance, compared to the original silver ones.
- Are not an essential thing to have in your makeup bag but are a beautiful edition and little luxury.

Have you ever tried a pair of the Shu Uemura eye lash curlers? 

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Sunday, 16 June 2013

YSL Volupte Sheer Candy 'Juicy Grapefruit 3' - First Impressions

When my family came down to London at the end of May to move me back home for summer, we did some shopping, of course. In Selfridges, both me and my auntie tried to get a YSL Volupte Sheer Candy but the sales assistant told us that there were none in stock as they were being discontinued!! I went into town on Thursday with my mum and auntie because we were meant to be getting some bits for my grandad (their dad) for fathers day but like typical girls when we were in Debenhams we ended up doing a bit of shopping for ourselves too! I was looking around all of the makeup counters for a blusher just seeing if any caught my eye. They didn't and so I noticed the Sheer Candy's sitting there looking pretty amongst the YSL lipsticks. I didn't think that there would be any in stock, as my Debenhams is only a small one, If Selfridges didn't have any then surely they wouldn't... Anyway, to my surprise they had the one I wanted (Number 3 Juicy Grapefruit) in stock and I bought it! I asked the sales assistant in there if it was true that YSL were discontinuing their Sheer Candy line and she said that she didn't know so I don't know what's happening!

I now own a YSL lip product, can I be classed as a 'proper' blogger now ;)?

I have done a few of these first impressions posts and they seem to be going down well with you all so I thought that I would do another one on my latest purchase! I shall of course provide you with a full and in depth review in the near future when I have been using this lip colour for a while longer but so far I really like it! The thoughts below are just about Number 3 Pink Grapefruit... 

- The packaging is absolutely stunning and definitely the selling point for me.
- The colour is super sheer.
- keeps lips hydrated.
- Glides onto the lips extremely easily.
- Perfect for people (like myself) who don't like to wear lipstick but instead prefer a slick of colour or gloss.
- Doesn't feel sticky on the lips.
- Is super pretty.
- Would make a stunning gift.
- Has virtually no colour payoff at all (take that in whatever way you like, negative or positive. For me it's a positive thing as I didn't want any colour pay off).
- Smells amazing.
- Looks amazing in a makeup bag or displayed on a dressing/makeup table.
- Considering there is no colour payoff, Number 3 could just be classed as an expensive/high end lip balm (again take that as you please, negative or positive. For me personally, I don't find this an issue). 

I absolutely love this Volupte Sheer Candy colour and no matter how many times I look at it I cannot get over how amazing the packaging is. I know for a fact that when this runs out I will probably end up being really sad and keeping the casing because I won't be able to bring myself to bin it. I love this Sheer Candy so much that I am going to go back into Debenhams next time I'm in town and see if they have the other shade that I was looking at in stock. I'm still unsure as to whether or not YSL are discontinuing their Sheer Candy range but I sincerely hope they are not; I think I have found my favourite lip products ever! I shall definitely try and find out what's going on when I go in store. 

Have you ever tried one of the YSL Volupte Sheer Candy colours? 

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Saturday, 15 June 2013

Lee Stafford Argan Oil 'Nourishing Miracle Oil'

Towards the end of last year I was introduced to something I never thought I'd use: Hair oil. I never thought that I would ever use one as I always thought they'd just make your hair feel really greasy and wouldn't be of any use. Oh how I was wrong. Hair oils (along with baby shampoo) have become firm favourites in my hair care routine. At the beginning of 2012, my hair was in awful condition, I didn't know what to do. I even had blood tests to make sure that there was nothing wrong with me. I started to develop a hair care routine that was based around shampoos aimed at strengthening the hair so it didn't drop out as much and using a good deep conditioner. It was only in October/November of last year that I actually gave hair oils a whirl. I have never ever looked back since.

I really like the packaging of this product. The fact that it comes in the box makes it feel more high end than it actually is and I find the colours to be really attractive. I love the way pink and orange clash; it's perfect! One super handy thing about this hair oil is that it comes in a plastic bottle. So many hair oils comes in glass bottles and I just don't trust myself; if you drop the bottle and it smashes, you've lost all the product that is inside! The plastic bottle is absolutely perfect for me and I am always travelling around and stuffing things inside my suitcase.

Another huge plus point about the packaging of this product is that it comes with a pump. So many products these days come without a product and I just feel like it's such a waste as you always end up dispensing way more product than you are actually going to need. I like that this oil comes with a pump because it enables me to use the same amount of product every time I apply some of the oil into my hair. I have pretty long hair and I like to work a good amount of oil into the ends and mid-lengths of it; I use between 4 and 8 pumps, depending on how my hair is feeling.  

I think this oil is really good value for money. This 50ml bottle cost me £11.99 from Boots and has lasted me for around three months. When I was at university, I would wash my hair around 4/5 times a week. I know it's excessive but I like to have clean hair when I am going out somewhere. I have most definitely put this bottle of oil through it's paces and it's lasted perfectly.  

This oil does not leave your hair feeling greasy at all. Instead, it leaves your hair feeling amazingly soft, shiny and healthy. The overall appearance of the hair looks more slick once and oil has been applied and over the time I have been using this product I definitely feel as though it has been working wonders. My hair feels soft, looks soft and smells lovely. Some hair oils don't smell too pleasant but this one smells pretty good. I have never used any Lee Stafford products before so I don't know if they all smell like this but I definitely want to try some more of his hair offerings; especially if they're as good as this!

The main thing I always want to know when I'm reading any kind of review is whether or not the product actually works! I definitely feel as though this hair oil has helped my improve the overall condition of my hair and I am over the mood, I couldn't be happier. I have had lots of people commenting on how healthy my hair is looking, asking what products I have been using and my family have told me that my hair is definitely in an amazing condition compared to how it has been.

I'm so happy with this hair oil and the way my hair is progressing. I feel as though the ends are super smooth, I don't have a lot of split ends, my hair is soft, shiny and just looks glowing. It sounds silly to say that your hair looks glowing but I really do feel as though my hair is amazing. This product itself isn't responsible to the positive changes that I am seeing in my hair but it is definitely contributing to them! As well as my hair now feeling and looking amazing, it has grown!! I am now a true believer in hair oils and I am recommending this one to everyone. I will definitely be buying another bottle of this when my current one runs out. I quite simply cannot be without it. Never. Ever.  

Have you ever tried Lee Stafford's Argan Oil? What product do you recommend I try?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

OOTD - Monochrome and Neon Skulls

I think it's pretty clear that I love a good skull scarf. I was lucky enough to get two new Alexander McQueen ones whilst shopping with family in London at the end of last month (you can see everything I got in my May haul here) and I am already eyeing up a few other ones that I'd like to get when I go back down to London to begin another academic year! The new season colours are stunning!!

I don't normally do fashion posts on here because my blog is primarily a beauty blog but I thought it would be nice to diversify things maybe. The only items of clothing that I really show on here are the pieces that I show in a monthly haul so I thought that it would be nice to occasionally show how I wear some of the pieces that I have bought.

I decided that I would do this quick outfit post because wore this outfit last week and I posted a picture of it on my Instagram (the picture below) and people seemed to like it. I usually wear a lot of black and white so I have been working the monochrome trend for quite some time now and I thought this scarf was super appropriate for the Summer 2013 season because neon is tipped to be a huge trend!

Outfit Details:

Top: River Island here
Bottoms: Black Leggings
Cardigan: Next (bought in January so probably not available now)
Shoes: Converse (bought around 2/3 years ago so probably not available)
Scarf: Alexander McQueen 

I know that this is a pretty boring OOTD compared to some outfits that bloggers wear but this is how I dress on a day to day basis; this is me. I'm not a slave to fashion and I'm a super casual dresser so I know that this outfit post probably isn't the best. However, I was happy with it and I thought that the black and white made the neon pink pop perfectly. Initially, I thought that this scarf would be really hard to wear but when looking at my wardrobe I discovered that it wouldn't be! I've never seen a McQueen this colour and I absolutely love it. I can see this being my most worn accessory this summer!

If you enjoyed this OOTD and would like me to branch out and do a few more showing
you how I wear some of the pieces I feature in my hauls, comment below
or tweet me and I will do some fashion posts occasionally!

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Maybelline The Rocket Volum' Express Mascara - Review

Now, I know that there has been quite a bit of hype about this mascara and bought it a few months ago expecting amazing things from it. I used to use the Maybelline  Colossal Volume mascaras and I absolutely loved them. They made my lashes thick, long and made them look as though they were false. The application of my mascara is probably the most important thing to me in the whole of my makeup routine. I have to have eyelashes that look perfect (according to my standards).

I purchased this mascara from Boots when it was first released and it was £5.99 instead of it's usual £7.99. As soon as I tried this mascara I hated it! I'm going to be brutally honest, with this review. It's not often that I give a product a bad review and I am not doing it to make Maybelline and their products look bad. I usually love Maybelline and have bought lots of their products in the past that have worked perfectly fine. I just cannot stand this mascara, I regret buying it.

As I said in my Benefit They're Real first impressions post (here), I absolutely hate spider eyelashes. I cannot abide by them. They drive me crazy, on myself and other people. I know everyone has their own personal preference but when it comes to makeup I find spider eyelashes such an eyesore. I hate the over all look of them. Why anyone wants to walk around looking like they have a grand total of 4/5 eyelashes, I will never know!

I find this mascara to be particularly difficult to apply. I don't like plastic wands on a mascara and this is the type of wand that this one has. The wand has little spikes on it and I found that when I was applying mascara from the very root of my lashes upwards the spikes would touch my eyelid and irritate it.

I have naturally quite long and thick lashes so I like a mascara that has the ability to lengthen and add a little extra volume to create the flirty false lash look. I found that this mascara only lengthened my lashes and didn't add any volume. I usually like to wear a bit of mascara and will apply a good two coats of whatever mascara I am using. I found that two coats of this mascara made my eyelashes go spidery and they looked too separated. Considering this mascara is called Volum' Express it left little to be desired.

I most definitely will not be purchasing this mascara again. I only used it a handful of times but I really disliked it so I haven't bothered to use it again. Personally, for me, I think this mascara was a waste of money as it does everything that I don't like a mascara to do.

I hate to slate products but I really wasn't impressed with this. Although this mascara didn't work for me, don't be completely put off it. I know a lot of bloggers who use and like this mascara so if you like plastic wands, big separated lashes and a mascara that only lengthens ... this is probably the one for you. Just not me.

Has anyone tried this mascara? What do you think of it?
Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Real Techniques Duo Fibre Brushes - First Impressions!

One thing I have started to become more and more obsessed with is makeup brushes! I don't know what it is about them but I just love buying them. In a short space of time, I seem to have acquired well over 30, it's sad I know! One brush that I did fall in love with was the one from the new Dior Summer 2013 collection! Oh my, it is stunning!! I think the collection is called 'Bird Of Paradise' and the brush is something you'd expect to find in paradise (or maybe even heaven?). The handle is black and the bristles are made from natural hair and are bright pink! I have to admit, I did Instagram a picture saying that I absolutely loved this brush but didn't know whether or not I could justify the whopping price tag. Well, let's just get this out in the open, I well and truly caved into the sheer beauty of the brush and I placed an order for it on Sunday. It arrived this morning and I'm in love, thanks for the amazing delivery Feel Unique ... See, I told you, my brush obsession is getting a little out of hand!

Anyway, onto something that is a little more affordable and has been greatly anticipated by lots of beauty bloggers and brush fanatics out there; the release of the Real Techniques Duo Fibre brushes. This set of 3 brushes was released at the end of May and includes an eye brush, face brush and contour brush. The brushes are made up of both natural and synthetic hairs and are limited edition. Although these brushes are limited edition, don't panic, they're available for one whole year!

I really like these brushes and I'm glad I've picked them up! I have only used them a few times but so far I think they are amazing! The powder brush is a nice size and distributes powder onto the face nicely, the Contour brush is by far my favourite brush and I personally think that it's the best brush in the set. It makes contouring my pale skin super easy and it's the perfect size to just fit under the cheekbone. Finally, the eye brush is a really nice shape and perfect for blending. I feel as though this is a lot like the MAC 217 as it does all of the work for you. It is a little more tapered than the 217, however. 

To quickly summarise, my initial thoughts of the Duo Fibre collection have been really positive:

- The Contour Brush is by far my favourite.
- All of the brushes feel amazingly soft and are easy to use.
- This is the first Real Techniques brush collection that does not come with a case (both the Core Collection and the Starter Set came with a case) but that really doesn't bother me as I didn't like the cases anyway.
- I picked this collection up from Boots for £23.99 which isn't bad for 3 brushes.
- I really like the white handles.
- The brushes are Duo Fibre and this means that they are made from a mixture of real and synthetic bristles.
- These brushes are perfect for people who have a tendency to be a little heavy handed with their makeup application and end up putting too much product on. 
- Really nice packaging.
- As good as the ordinary synthetic Real Techniques brushes.
- Perfect for use with powder products because due to the brushes being synthetic fibres they are perfect for light application.

Have you managed to get hold of these limited edition brushes? What do you think of them?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Saturday, 1 June 2013

May Haul!

Hello lovelies, I can't believe it's June already! Time seems to have flown by this year. I have spent the last few days in London with family moving my things out, walking around seeing some of the sights (yes, I was a tourist for the day in the city I've lived in for the past two years) and of course we did some shopping! Well actually, we did a lot of shopping but never mind because it was fun!

I arrived home yesterday and it feels amazing to be here. I'm really close to my family so being back home with them for the next 3 months is something I'm really looking forward to. It's going to be nice being able to hang out with family and friends just doing absolutely nothing and not having to worry about my degree. I was unpacking some of my things earlier and came across a Jackie Collins book in my wardrobe. I actually received the book for Christmas but my study schedule is so crazy I haven't had time to read it! I'm not a big reader anymore (I used to be such a book worm) but I love her books so I'm going to enjoy kicking back, relaxing and finally reading her latest novel.

I was spoilt rotten in London and I am so thankful and appreciative of everything I got! I did buy some of these things myself when I went to Oxford Street earlier in May after one of my exams but half of the things in my haul were gifts. I know haul posts are a bit like Marmite - some love them whilst others hate them. I personally love them and they're my favourite posts to both read and write.

Some of our shopping bags - oops!!


I picked up the latest edition of ELLE Magazine and got a free sample of Benefits They're Real mascara! I don't usually read ELLE and only picked it up so I could try the Benefit mascara out. The sample is worth £9.50 and the magazine only costs £4 so it's worth picking one up if you're wanting to try this famous mascara without having to fork out a lot of money. I didn't think I'd be a fan of the mascara but I actually think that's it okay. I recently dedicated a post to my first impressions of this mascara and you can read this here. I shall also be doing an in depth review of the mascara at some point in the future too!

Shu Uemura 

I have heard SO much about these eyelash curlers and when I seen the Pixiwoo's using a gold pair of them I was too excited! I wasn't sure what brand they were or whether or not they were even within my price range. I don't know how I found out that they were Shu Uemura (I'm not sure whether they said so in one of their videos) but as soon as I did I knew I had to have them. I haven't ever used an eyelash curler before and I didn't really fancy using a cheap one. I didn't want to use something that would ruin or rip out my eyelashes as they're long and thick so I didn't want to destroy them!! In Boots, cheap eyelash curlers were around £8 and some No7 ones I was looking at were £14. I thought I'd rather pay a little bit extra and get the holy grail of eyelash curlers!
I have always had my eye on the ordinary silver curlers but when I knew about these gold ones I was sold. I love gold (gold is the only jewellery I will wear - I don't like the cool tones of White Gold and I'm allergic to Silver) so naturally I was drawn to the gold pair.
I picked these up from Selfridges and I was so glad they actually had them in stock! The eyelash curlers are 24 carat gold, limited edition, features enhanced design and upgraded features. I'm in LOVE with these beauties, they look stunning in my makeup bag and they're not just a gimmick; they actually work and are worth every penny. I definitely recommend them and I shall be reviewing them in the near future.


I have been loving Next recently for basic tops and t shirts. They always have some lovely work clothing in too but as I'm still studying I don't need to worry about looking formal. I picked this top up because I noticed it in my local store in April (when I picked up the tops I featured in my April haul here) but unfortunately it was pulled and they only had that one left in my size. My mum, nanna and auntie really like Next clothing so whilst they were looking around I thought I'd have a look for the t shirt. Luckily I found it and I was over the moon it's going to look amazing with something else that I picked up last month!! The fabric feels really nice quality and the t shirt is nice and loose. Usually, I love tank tops but recently I have been branching out and getting a few loose fitting t shirts (maybe this is a sign of me growing up!?).

River Island 

I have to admit, I don't often go crazy in River Island but this month I have been loving their plain t shirts! They have come out with some amazing pieces that are perfect for summer and very 'me' so I have been shopping in there a lot.

I absolutely LOVE these tops they look really nice on! Two of the pictures that I have included have been taken off of the River Island website because I wore them recently whilst spending time with family in London and they're now in the wash (oops). There is also a bright pink version of this top available and I dragged my poor mum and nanna into every River Island store on Oxford Street! There are actually 3 stores and none of them had my size; 2 of them didn't even have the tops available to buy!

I love distressed looking material and these two t shirts really appealed to me. Again, they're loose fitting and are going to be perfect for summer. 
The grey top will look amazing with my black and white McQueen scarf and some converse!
The burgundy top is such an amazing piece - I just love it! The material on the shoulders has a completely different look to the bottom of the t shirt and rather than looking like a pinky burgundy colour it looks almost pinky lilac - love it! 

Finally, I picked up two more loose fitting t shirts. The fabric of these is thin and perfect for summer. They have arms that are a decent length and make me think that I could get away with not wearing a cardigan (I hate my arms so I like to cover them up). There was four colours available - light grey, white, black and cobalt blue. In store they were 2 for £16 but unfortunately the same offer is not available online. I chose the white and grey tops because they will look amazing with two very exciting things that I picked up and have featured further down in this haul post! 

 (I think I might be returning this t shirt - it looks
such a funny shape!)


I have been looking for the perfect thin eyeliner brush for ages and I think I may have found it. I was going to get the 209 but this brush is a little finer. The guy that served me and my auntie in Selfridges was so lovely (I think he was called Jamie) and I asked him if they did one that was any thinner than the 209. He said they did and this is how I ended up with the 210. It has a super fine point and I'm happy with it. Although it's only thin you will still be able to create a thick bold line with this; you'll just have to take a little longer building the intensity of the line up! 


I picked up the Real Techniques Duo Fibre set up from Boots and I am so glad that I did! I posted a picture of these on Instagram and Twitter and a few people asked where I'd got them from. I picked them up from a big Boots in London and there were only a few sets left. I love the feel of these brushes and the contour brush is amazing for using when contouring super pale skin. These brushes are limited edition but if you haven't picked these up yet don't panic; they are available for a year.
I picked up some models own nail polishes because they were on a 3 for 2 offer. I have been dying to get my hands on the new neon colours and the pink one immediately caught my eye. I picked up Jack Frost because I have seen so many other beauty bloggers using it and it looks amazing when used as a top coat. I didn't really have another nail polish in mind so had a hard time choosing a 3rd one (but I wasn't going to just get the 2 and miss out on a free one!) so I went for a sparkly pink glitter. This is chunky glitter and will look so cute on the neon pink as a top coat.
Finally, I picked up another Maybelline Colour Tattoo in 'Permanent Taupe'. I have been looking out for this colour for so long and have never been able to find it! Luckily when we went shopping the huge Boots on Oxford Street had this colour available and I picked up the very last one- yay, lucky me!!


Unfortunately, when I was moving my things out there was a huge amount of water and I didn't realise! I'd got a phone call saying that they were near by and I just shoved my brown mini Bailey Button UGG's on (which I got in my Christmas Haul here), went to meet them and encountered the water. I couldn't avoid it and although I was careful it soaked right into my boots. I dried them out and it has left big water marks around the front and sides. I was devastated and immediately Google'ed to see if there was something I could use. The Schuh website had amazing reviews for the Ugg Care Kit and so I picked it up. I shall definitely do a blog post about the cleaning process of my UGG's.

Ted Baker

I was lucky enough to receive a large Ted Baker wash bag for Christmas and although it's huge it just isn't big enough for all of my make up! I don't have the space at uni to have proper makeup storage so I like to use nice makeup bags. I noticed the bright pink wash bag a while back in John Lewis and knew that when family came down shopping I would look out for it. I featured this wash bag in my Summer shopping wish list post here and was gutted when I couldn't see it in the Ted Baker Store. I asked a member of staff and luckily they had one in the store room so she got it out for me! I love it, I'm going through a total pink phase at the moment.

Alexander McQueen 

Finally, I have my super exciting items! I was a VERY spoilt girl and I am so grateful! I appreciate these scarves so so much and I can't believe that I now have a little collection. I am going to treasure them forever and hopefully continue to collect them over many more years to come! As you will know if you read my Christmas haul post all those months ago, I received one of these icons and I have worn it more or less everyday since. I Instagram'ed a picture of my big Selfridges bag and a few people liked it so now you can actually see what I bought .... 

I noticed this pink scarf in Selfridges a few months ago and fell in love with it! I knew I was definitely after it for summer and when I went to the McQueen section there was no pink scarf there; I couldn't believe it! Luckily the sales associate was absolutely lovely and hunted all over to see if there were anymore in stock. I couldn't believe it when she came back with one and said it was one of the last ones - talk about lucky!! I plan on wearing this with a really basic colour such as a plain white t shirt because it's such a bright colour (it's the colour of the Ted Baker makeup bag pictured above!!) 

As soon as I got to the McQueen scarves I looked for the pink one and when I couldn't see it my eye was drawn to this one! I absolutely love the black McQueen scarves and purple is one of my favourite colours. I couldn't resist this and when I tried it on I was sold! Again, the sales associate was really helpful and told me that this scarf is one of McQueen's latest colours and Selfridges had only had it in stock for around a week! 

I know I'm going to get a lot of use out of these scarves and they feel amazing! I can't wait to wear them and they (along with my black and white one) are going to go really well with a lot of the new tops that I have picked up over the past few months! I'm a plain/casual dresser anyway and these scarves just add an amazing pop to any outfit! They're amazing worn casually or dressed up. If anyone would like me to do a quick blog post with a simple guide of how to authenticate one of these beautiful scarves, I will be happy to do so! 

I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend and I shall be back soon with my next post! 

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