Saturday, March 5, 2016

NYX Liquid Suede review

The Shoppers next door to work just got an NYX stand in, and it's simultaneously the best and worst thing that could have happened. Goodbye savings, hello all the new impulse buys!

I popped in yesterday and restricted myself to 2 purchases, the Eyebrow Gel and a Liquid Suede matte gloss. I've yet to try the former, but tried the gloss the second I got to work. I have to say..... I've mixed feelings about it! Firstly, it cost $10.99 (€6 approx) so is hardly a budget buster. But NYX are so highly regarded that I was expecting GREAT things.

First, the pros:

1- it's the most pigmented purple I've ever come across. Seriously, it packs a whallop and that's amazing for a lighter purple.

2- the colour budges for no man. This is not a gloss that needs to be reapplied regularly. I touched mine up once during a 7 hour day, and that was only to try and moisten my lips.

3- my lips didn't feel drier than the Sahara Desert when I took it off. A lot of matte glosses can literally zap the moisture out of your lips, but mine felt perfect after wearing it all day.

4- I simply ADORE the colour! It's super bright, funky, eye catching and I got so many compliments on it from clients.

Now the cons-

1- It dried..... sticky? I've never encountered that with a matte gloss before. It feels lovely on for the first few seconds, but then leaves your lips tacky. I tackled with a little bit of EOS balm, but it wasn't something I was expecting!

2- it looked like it invented lines on my lips to sink into. This is not a problem specific to NYX, I've found it with most matte's.  But because it was such a bright colour it was VERY obvious. Again,  it was improved with a bit of balm.

3- while it's staying power is almost unmatched, I found that it went chalky on my inner lip. So the colour there was brighter than the rest of my lips.

All in all, this is definitely one of the better budget matte's that I've tried. It didn't flake or dry out my lips, I didn't have to worry about it smudging, and the range of colours makes it nearly impossible to not try a few more.

The shade I used was 06, you can't miss it, it's like a purple beacon of hope in the distance.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Why I decided to emigrate

I know this is a beauty blog, a neglected one at that, but I've a few thoughts rattling around my head that I'd like to get to get out.

As some of you may know, about 2 and a half months ago I picked up sticks and moved to Toronto. I left behind my wonderful family (including a 4 year old niece that still thinks I'm on holiday), my 2 beloved dogs and my small, but vital group of friends. The decision to move wasn't an easy one, but only 2 months in its already one of the best decisions I've made.

It wasn't a spur of the moment decision. I had been in Toronto in the summer to visit 2 very dear friends who made the move over a year ago. I fell in love with the city, with the people, with the lifestyle and with the opportunities. Leaving didn't feel right. I knew from the moment I came home that I wanted to go back. Arriving home to find myself unemployed was the biggest kick.

I left school straight into the recession, so I never got to enjoy the lifestyle people just 3 or 4 years older got to enjoy. Looking for work was impossible, so I went back to college to requalify in a different field. Only to find that there STILL wasn't any work. I often felt like my generation is the generation that Ireland forgot. The generation who won't be able to afford mortgages or take their families on holiday. The generation where a guy with a plastic bag on his head made more sense in a 5 minute tv segment than the people running the country had made in years.  There was about 5 years of constant struggle and rejection. When you branch out and see the life your peers in other countries are leading it's very easy to see why a lot of my age group are now just missing from Ireland.

I honestly feel a bit like Ireland took the mickey out my generation. They acknowledged that there was no work for us, but remedied it by enlisting us to work for free in Centra to "build our skills" stacking shelves. I have friends with DEGREES doing FAS courses because they can't get work!

In 2014 I went back to education again and got my Diploma in beauty therapy. To me, that was supposed to be my brand new start. I don't want this to turn into an 'Ireland sucks for young people ' post, but honestly, Ireland was offering me no incentive to stay. I had places asking me to do 3-4 day trials for free (a practice that HAS to be illegal, but when everyone wants a job you can do what you want). I had experience and qualifications that I'd worked hard for that people wanted me use for free.

So I took my qualifications elsewhere. I waved goodbye to everyone on the 3rd of November and I haven't looked back since. I was very lucky to have friends who's space I could invade while I got settled. They put up with me sleeping on their couch until I got my own place. I landed in Toronto on a Tuesday and had a job by the Thursday which kept me going up until now. Next week I'm starting work in an award winning salon. I have essentially landed my dream job. I'm renting a beautiful little house with 2 lovely girls. I'm paying bills and keeping myself fed. I've learned more about being an adult in the last two months than I have in 7 years at home.

It hasn't been easy. There have been times when I thought that maybe I didn't think this through. I miss my friends and family every day. I miss having my mammy and daddy so close to help me out. I miss cuddling with my dogs when im morbidly hungover. I miss a big sunday roast. Ive missed birthdays, funerals, christmas, and I'll miss the wedding of two very good friends. When my first job finished up there were many moments of panic. I'm not saying jumping ship is for everyone, but for me everything seems to have fallen into place very quickly.

Since I've gotten here I've had more opportunities pointed my way than I've had in years back home. I've met some beautiful people, and I've got to experience parts of life that had just escaped me in Dublin. Like..... I have my own house! Even working full time in Dublin I just couldn't afford to live away from my folks, I was dependant on them to keep a roof over my head. Now, I'm financially independent, taking care of my own life and it's the most satisfying, liberating feeling. For the first time in a very long time I'm proud of myself.

I do wish that all these wonderful things could be happening for me back home, so that I could selfishly have the best of both worlds. But I, like so many others in my age group, had to travel to find my own life, and it has been worth it.

So there you have it. I miss Dublin, but right now Toronto is the best place in the world for me.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Tonturing with Cocoa Brown

Tontouring is everywhere atm, and as the brain child of Tanning guru Marissa Carter it seemed like a good idea to try i out! It can seem a bit daunting, mastering contouring is hard enough without trying it with something you cant immediately scrub off!!

I have to's pretty easy to conquer, and is actually god fun! So, I've done up a quick step by step routine of how I achieved a ice, subtle look!

I used Gentle Bronze as a base to give my skin a natural looking glow.

I squirted out a blob of the 1 Hour tan (I used the dark shade) and using a flat contour brush I applied the tan to the hollow of my cheeks and blended. (If your brush is like mine it will absolutely hoover up the tan, so tread carefully!)

Then I used my fingers to gently blend the tan and ensure that there were no straight lines or tiger stripes.

And that's it! Once you take the plunge it's very simple. Just remember, it's easier to add than it is to remove, so start with small amounts of the darker tan and build on it!


Tonturing is a nifty little skill to master. I just throw on a bit of powder, mascara and brow powder and I've a 2 minute full face!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Make up Revolution Ultra face base

Ever since Makeup Revolution popped up in my local Superdrug I've been a HUGE fan. I use their pallets almost daily as they're so versatile. I've dabbled in a few of their other products, but never their foundations as Superdrug never stocked my shade. (The MUR stand in my Superdrug is slim pickings at the best of times)

However, today they had it in stock (HALLELUJAH!!) so I dived on it. Now, Ultra face base is a BB cream foundation hybrid, and it's only €3.85, so I wasn't expecting miracles. But nothing ventured, nothing gained.

I used a MUR primer and applied using a flat brush and just tapped with a sponge. Well, initially I was blown away. The shade is perfect for pale skin (I used FB02) as it's pale but pink toned so doesn't leave you looking ghostly.

It's much fuller coverage than any BB cream I've ever used, in fact it's a fuller coverage than some medium-full foundations I've used. It covered all my redness without needing concealor. The formula itself is quite thick, but blends and builds perfectly, and doesn't create a mask like effect. In my opinion it left my skin looking quite porcelain and almost airbrushed.

Freshly applied
What I love most about this base is its lasting power. Lately, my make up has been needing almost hourly touch up's to cover shine, but I honestly have not had to touch my face up all day. It hasn't separated or gone patchy on my oily skin, whereas foundations (with a much higher price tag) would only last about 2-3 hours. It also doesn't feel heavy on my skin.
After 10 hours and 0 touch up's

 If you want a full coverage foundation with good lasting power, that's buildable and blends well, then you really can't get much better than Ultra Face in my opinion. It's worth every penny of its €3.85 price tag. I'm going to give it a few more uses, and investigate the different shades, but id already be fairly confident using this foundation on clients! 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Simple skin care

I've been going through the ringer with my skin lately. It's been getting so oily towards the evening that my make up has been separating on my skin and just generally looking a bit.....crap. Its also getting a lot more sensitive so a lot of products I've tried have really aggravated it. It's been going through so many changes, both internal and external, that keeping on top of it is proving a challenge. Gone are the days when a quick scrub at night did the job.

We all know about the Simple skincare brand, it's a store staple. I've tried a few of their offerings, but being a bit curious I tend to float from brand to brand. Simple products are packed full of natural skin loving ingredients, and 0 preservatives. 

My first port of call was the Kind to skin Micellar water. I love this product! It's all natural and really removes every trace of make up, even waterproof liner or mascara. It also leaves my skin feeling spotlessly clean and refreshed. 

To help combat my new found oil problem I chose an Oil Balancing facial scrub and Oil Balancing daily moisturoiser. I use the scrub every 1-2 days, and the moisturoiser every day religiously. The both promise to cleanse and nourish the skin while helping to eliminate shine. But do they?

I've been using them every day for just over a week and I have to say that I am noticing a difference! It's small, but when it comes to skin care every little helps! I'm definitely going to continue using them to see the full effects, and will definitely be buying the micellar water again!

At the time of purchase all Simple skin care was coming in around the €3-5  and was on a 3 for 2 offer, so those 3 only cost me €6 at the till!

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Tan by the 2 Jenns

Pretty much every feed I have has been clogged up with news and reviews of The Tan By the two Jenns, so after hunting it down in Couture Beauty in Tallaght I  couldn't wait to try it.
The Tan has been developed over 18 months by the two Jenns (of Vanity Room fame) and comes in a gel, spray and gradual tan format. The I opted for the gel and it set me back €19!

The Tan claims to be moisturising, quick drying, non sticky and stink free. But is it? Being the patient creature that i am, I gave myself a layer last night. While I was applying I very quickly noticed that Hey, this is just gliding on like a dream! It spreads and blends like a dream! The guide colour is subtle, but dark enough to avoid any missed spots! It dries almost immediately on the skin so there was absolutely no sticky feeling!


I've noticed lately that every tan I use has left me FEELING like I'm coated in tan, but seconds after applying The Tan I felt ready to walk out the door!  And it actually left my skin feeling really soft and moisturised! I also didn't notice any discernable tan smell! Big bonus!

According to the bottle you can leave this tan on for 2-3 hours for a subtle colour. But if, like me, you have a go hard or go  home attitude to tanning, you can leave it on for 8 hours for a deeper colour. I left it on over night and love my colour this morning. It's deep , but natural looking even on my pale skin!

I  think the proof is in the punch here! I'm normally a notorious bargain hunter, but I would happily pay €19 for this tan again! My only word of warning would be to only apply a small amount to your mitt at a time as the gel is a bit runny and a little blob goes a long away!
Well done to the two Jenns! They've created what I think will be a holy grail product for a lot of folk!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Katrina's Beauty Room!

Hello everyone! I hope the new year has been treating you all very well 😄

The blog has been completely dead of late, so I thought I'd show you all why! As you'll probably know, I've been working away studying beauty therapy and working in a local salon, so between that, exams, Christmas and getting my own salon up and running at home things have just been a bit mental! But now that things have gotten a bit more relaxed I'm going to do my best to get back into regular reviewing!

So, with that said, I'd love to introduce you all to my new baby- Katrina's Beauty Room. 

A lot of blood, sweat, and quite a few tears went into to turning my attic into a little slice of heaven for clients, and for myself! It's very early days yet, I'm doing tanning, nails, tinting, waxing, lashes (all your basic salon treatments) but there'll be new treatments added regularly at very competitive prices! 

If you'd like to keep up to date with news and any special offers feel free to give me and aul sneaky like on Facebook 

Talk soon!