TOP 5 MAC LIPSTICKS – FANFARE, PLUMFUL, SPEAK LOUDER, REBEL & SHY GIRL

Up until last year I’d never tried a MAC lipstick. Shocking for a so-called beauty obsessive, I know. Needless to say since trying them a somewhat obsession has started (that’s totally been enabled by Lauren just so you know) and I’m now the owner of an ever-expanding MAC lipstick collection.  After thinking long and hard I’ve managed to whittle it down to my top 5 excluding Crosswires which is my numero uno – it’s the bomb.com just so you know and deserves it’s own list!

 

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MAC Fanfare – This was a ‘bought on a whim’ purchase when I was in need of aMAC fix (god I sound like an addict!). It’s a lovely natural pink with a hint of pearlescent shimmer to it. It’s a cremesheen formula so is rich and creamy and looks good even if your lips aren’t in tip top condition.

MAC Rebel – I know what you’re thinking. It’s too dark! But, used as a stain this is the most beautiful deep berry shade. For a full on bold lip use straight from the bullet.

MAC Shy Girl – You know those days where you just want a super casual look? A touch of tinted moisturizer, a sweeping of mascara and a bit of clear brow gel? Shy Girl is your best friend!

MAC Speak Louder – Speak Louder is a gorgeous hot pink shade that I’ve found works really well with a smokey eye in the past. It looks great with simply cat flick make up too for a ‘pretty-but-not-too-overdone’ look.  It’s a cremesheen formula so feels moisturising and creamy.

MAC Plumful – Plumful is my ‘go-to’ shade when I can’t decide which shade to go for – it goes with EVERYTHING. Lauren made me buy this and I’m so glad she did. It comes a close second to Crosswires! It’s a sheer formula but still gives quite a bit of colour pay off.

 

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What are your favourite MAC shades? Anything I need to add to my collection?

FRENCH PHARMACY SHOPPING – CITY PHARMA

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Last Friday I was lucky enough to get to go to Paris for the day with work to do some beauty product scouting. I ticked off nearly every Parisian beauty destination and thought I would do a series of posts about the best places to beauty shop in Paris. First up, City Pharma.

City Pharma generally tends to be the number one beauty destination for us hardcore beauty addicts when taking a jaunt to Paris. You’ll find it on Rue Du Four with the nearest metro stop being Saint-Germain-des-Prés. It’s about a minutes walk. It’s very easy to spot despite not having ‘City Pharma’ written anywhere on the outside of the building. But you’ll notice it for the flock of women gathering inside and the bright green pharmacy cross. Unlike most French pharmacies it doesn’t shut at 2:30pm, it’s open until 8pm most nights.

Be warned if you do go in, it’s VERY cramped. I went in first thing in the morning and it was still busy. Compared to how big I thought it would be, it didn’t live up. It’s quite small, with narrow aisles and can feel quite claustrophobic. You’ll be saying ‘pardon’ a lot to other customers to get past them.

If you persevere though you’ll find a mecca of French skincare brands all housed under one roof. La Roche Posay, Avene, Filgora, Lierac, Caudalie, Bioderma etc – they have the lot. They’re also competitively priced compared to other French pharmacies so my advice is to wander round the smaller, quieter pharmacies first, scout out what you like, note it down then go to City Pharma armed with your shopping list. They like to do promotions too so expect products clumped together on deals and offers etc.

The staff are the epitome of Parisian chic all dressed in their immaculately white uniforms with stereotypical glowing French skin. These women know their stuff and most speak English so just explain (in French) you don’t speak the language and they’ll flip to English immediately. Use their knowledge, they work with these products every single day and if their skin is anything to go by, they certainly know their stuff. It’s not like Boot’s where the sales assistants are stacking shelves or behind a till (I’d know, I used to be one), instead their sales assistants are actively helping customers the whole time and advising on what they recommend. Personally I think it’s a lesson other stores can learn from (apart from you Space.NK, you fab bunch).

My top piece of advice is go prepared. Do your research beforehand. Go armed with a list, pick up a big red basket at the doors (you’ll need one) and if you can’t find something ask one of the many of assistants dotted about. I think that’s about everything but if you have any questions or there’s something I’ve missed and you’d like to know the answer to just let me know by leaving a comment below. Bon magasinage!

Rebecca

 14 things I learnt about beauty in 2014

1. Avoiding fragrance and essential oils in my skincare products has worked miracles for my complexion. Big shout out to Paula’s Choice for helping me see the light!

2. A couple of drops of Clarins Radiance Booster drops can make me look more alive, and less corpse, like in a few hours.

3. Mineral foundation is far quicker and easier than using liquid foundation and powder. It’s especially good on a cold and grey morning when you want some extra kip.

4. Co-washing is not for me. Hello greasy hair after two hours.

5. A skin fast (not applying anything after cleansing and toning) actually does wonders for my skin once in a while.

6. Salon-like shellac nails are achievable with the help of the nifty little kit from Sensationail.

7. There is no way you #wokeuplikedis

8. Coconut oil is AMAZING and can be used for so many different things. Hair mask? Check! Cleanser? Check! Cuticle balm? Check!

9. Whilst we’re on coconut oil, oil pulling is foul and not an experience I’d like to go through again.

10. Exercising might be good for you, but so is an extra half an hour in bed, especially if you’re already sleep deprived as it is. It’s all about balance.

11. Orange lips are surprisingly easy to pull off.

12. Your face mask can make a really effective cleanser.

13. Clinique will always be the queen of mascaras in my eyes (pardon the pun). Countless tubes of Lash Power and Feathering mascara were purchased in 2014.

14. Nail cleanser can add days to the longevity of your manicure. Formula X do an awesome one.