My Love Affair with Lip Pencils | Rimmel Exaggerate Lip Liners

Lip liner was never something I used to be into. I would always skip past looking at lip liners, instead heading straight for the lipsticks thinking that they didn’t really make a difference, they weren’t really necessary. Whilst they certainly aren’t necessary, they really do make a difference, something I discovered fairly recently. My love affair with lip liner, more specifically the Rimmel Exaggerate Lip Liners came one time when Lucy and me were getting ready for a night out and she made me try hers. I would say it was love at first sight if I believed in that sort of thing.

The Rimmel Exaggerate Lip Liners stick around for a long while, are highly pigmented but are still soft and moveable. They also come in a retractable pencil so there isn’t need for a sharpener which makes them an A+ in my book. My favourite shades are East End Snob which I love to wear underneath the Kate Moss x Rimmel Lipsticks in 03 and 08 - and is also a great dupe for Charlotte Tilbury’s Lip Cheat Lip Liner in Pillow Talk - Addiction which is also great underneath 03 but I also love underneath the Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in Nude Delight, and Obsession which is great underneath Charlotte Tilbury's Matte Revolution Lipstick in Bond Girl. These liners are also a steal at just £3.99, I just wish there were more shades.

My favourite thing about lip liners though, besides making your lipstick last a lot longer and be more pigmented, is that you can perfect and ‘cheat’ your lips slightly. Now, personally I’m not into the whole Kylie Jenner, make your lips three sizes bigger thing - if you are then kudos to you, but it isn’t more me - however I do like to balance my lips out slightly as my bottom lip is slightly more full than my top lip and lip liner is the easiest way to do this. You can also exaggerate your cupids bow with lip liner or cancel it out if you think yours is too pronounced. Really, lip liner is a great tool to have in your arsenal and a weapon every girl should keep up their sleeve.

What’re your favourite lip liners?

~ Jade xx

Blueberry muffins | Sunday Bakes

Blueberry muffins are my favourite kind of muffins, some people like chocolate, double chocolate or even triple chocolate, some like lemon and poppy seed but I’m a sucker for the traditional blueberry muffin. Mainly because they feel a little healthier than the chocolate alternatives. I’ve tried many muffin recipes over the years but this is my favourite as it creates the best light and delicious muffins I’ve every tasted.

I N G R E D I E N T S :

110g Plain flour
110g Butter
65g Caster sugar
2 Eggs
1½tsp Baking powder
125g Blueberries - fresh, frozen or from a can if you want the juices to run into the cake
Pinch nutmeg

M E T H O D :

1. Preheat your oven to 200ºC/400ºF/Gas 6. Cream together the butter and sugar, slowly add in the eggs and mix for three minutes. 

2. Add the flour, baking powder and nutmeg to the mixture and combine. Fold in half of the blueberries to the mixture leaving some for decoration on top. 

3. Leave the mixture to chill in the fridge for at least an hour. 

4. Place a spoonful of the mixture into each muffin case filling each to just over half way. Stud each muffin with the left over blueberries. 

5. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until golden on top. Leave to cool for 10 minutes before removing from the muffin tin.

~ Jade xx

Let's Talk Tan

The smell of biscuits is definitely on the horizon. With summer being in full swing many of us will be wanting that glowing bronze goddess tan and instead of sitting in the sun for hours on end to achieve a natural tan - as this is incredibly damaging to our skin, always wear suncream - will want to fake it. There’s a few different ways to do this and a few paramount steps to take in order to achieve the best, natural looking, fake tan you can so here are my top tips.

Exfoliate | To prevent tan clinging to any dry skin be sure to exfoliate everywhere you’ll be tanning, legs, arms, chest, the lot. Pay special attention to places like the knees, elbows and ankles as tan tends to especially gather in these areas. Great body scrubs out there include Soap & Glory Scrub ‘Em And Leave ‘Em & The Breakfast Scrub and the Sanctuary Salt Scrub is a great exfoliating and moisturising scrub too.

Moisturise | Moisturising is paramount to achieving a smooth, streak free tan. Not only is moisturising your skin generally good for smoothing everything out and looking after your limbs it will prevent any unwanted patchy tan. I like to use an after sun rather than an actual body moisturiser as they tend to be lighter in formula so sink into the skin faster but still give heavy hydration. Clarins After Sun Gel Ultra-Soothing is a lovely after sun as is the Garnier After Sun, for a more affordable option.

Barrier | The step a lot of people forget is to barrier off places that don’t need tan or tan easily gathers. If you’re using an instant tan this step can be skipped but if you’re using a fake tan that will be sticking around for at least a week this step is essential. To do this use Vaseline - petroleum jelly - and apply to the ankles, heels, knees - front and back -, elbows - front and back -, collar bones, wrists, under arms and around your hair line.

Tan | To apply fake tan always use a mitt. Whether its instant tan, a mouse, lotion, whatever your preferred tan is always, always, always use a mitt. Using a mitt will mean the tan is easily worked into the skin, is streak free and evenly applied but also that your hands aren’t left stained a lovely shade of orange. Apply a little at a time instead of going in with a massive dollop and not be able to blend it in. Work in sections so the tan doesn’t start drying before you’ve finished working it in and only use the excess left on the mitt to brush over the tops of your hands and feet. Great self-tanners include the St Tropez Bronzing Mouse, the St Tropez Express Tan Mousse and Xen-Tan Deep Bronze Luxe. Great instant tanners include the Rimmel Sun Shimmer Instant Tan, the Fake Bake Bronzer Instant Tan Lotion and the Clarins Instant Smoothing Self Tan for the face. The Charlotte Tilbury Supermodel Body is a great alternative for those of use who are scared of fake tan but still want the bronzed goddess look or add even more shimmer on top of your tan.

Do you have any tanning tips?

~ Jade xx

New from Revlon | Ultra HD Lipsticks & Matte Highlighting Palette

I’m a big fan of Revlon and have been for many years so whenever there’s a new release I always jump at the chance to try it. On a recent Boots trip I picked up a couple of new things from one of my favourite brands to try out.

Revlon are great at producing lip products. From their Lip Butters, to the Colorburst Lacquer and Matte Balms and the Moisture Stains to their Super Lustrous Lipsticks and Super Lustrous Lipgloss' are all winners with their latest release - the Ultra HD Lipsticks  - being no exception to this rule. All of the shades ranging from nudes and light pinks to reds and deep berries are named after flowers such Rose, Sweat Pea, Hibiscus and Iris which being a sucker for shade names delighted me a lot. They’re incredibly pigmented despite the silky, moisturising texture and they stain the lips so the colour lasts even when the gel texture has worn away. The scent is also lovely of a mix of vanilla and mango but isn’t overpowering that you can smell it once it’s on your lips. I chose the shade Poppy to be my summer red as it has a orange undertone and the glossy texture makes it perfect for the summer months rather than I matte, deep red I’m used to wearing during winter. The only problem I have with these lipstick is that the shape of the bullet can make it difficult to apply compared to a traditional bullet shape but that won’t stop me from picking up more shades.

I’m a big bronzer and contour girl so when I saw the Matte Highlighting Palette in Desert Bronze it instantly found its way into my basket. The mix of the lighter and darker bronze shades makes a bronzer/contour hybrid that is neither too orange nor too ashy and is a great all rounder. The white shade at the top has a subtle shimmer and is great for targeted highlighting with your finger or small brush and the powder itself blends so easily you can bronze up your skin in seconds.

What’re your favourite new releases?

~ Jade xx

Rocky Road | Sunday Bakes

Rocky road is a great recipe for any novice bakers out there or anyone who doesn’t venture into the kitchen very often. It doesn’t involve any actual baking so is quick and easy but more importantly, nigh-on impossible to mess up. It’s a great treat to add to lunchbox’s or picnic’s and any small human will be thanking you dearly for making it.

I N G R E D I E N T S :

350g Dark or plain chocolate
150g Salted butter
4tbsp Golden syrup
250g Cookies or biscuits (honeycomb would be great also)
150g Mini marshmallows
Anything else you would like to add - nuts, raisins, glacé cherries etc

M E T H O D :

1. Melt the butter and chocolate together in a bain-marie (glass bowl over a saucepan of boiling water without the water touching the bowl), stirring constantly to be sure the chocolate doesn’t burn.

2. Remove the bowl from the heat and stir in the golden syrup. Break up the cookies into small pieces by placing in a freezer bag or tea towel and bashing with a rolling pin (or put them in a food processor and 'pulse' a few times). 

3. Add the cookies and marshmallows as well as any extras to the chocolate mix. Pour the mixture into a square, lined tin and push the mixture into the tin until it covers evenly.

4. Leave the mixture to chill in the fridge for at least four hours, but preferably overnight, to set. Remove from tin once chilled, cut into pieces and enjoy.

~ Jade xx

Current Favourites | #10

Bourjois Healthy Balance Powder | To combat oily skin I have to use a powder but often that comes with having an over-matte base which leaves your face looking dry and having exaggerated pores. With this powder though that doesn’t happen. Your makeup is set, your face is matte but you still have a radiance about your skin and pores are left looking invisible - full review here

The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil | This was a recommendation from Lucy and one that I was very weary of. Having oily skin the thought of putting oil on my face terrified me but it removes makeup like nothing I’ve ever used before and leaves the skin feeling nourished and moisturised, but not greasy.

Barry M Quick Dry Nail Paint - Eat My Dust | I’ve been obsessed with this shade since I picked it up all the way back in March. It’s the perfect pastel blue that isn’t too pastel and the formula is fast drying for any impatient people out there like me - full review here

Rimmel Exaggerate Lip Pencil - East End Snob + Revlon Moisture Stain - London Posh | As of late this has been my favourite lip combination. The Rimmel Lip Pencil is another recommendation from Lucy and the colour is a great pinky nude with the formula being long wearing but not drying, I had to go back and pick up some more shades - full review here. I’ve had the Revlon Moisture Stain since last year and loved it when they first launched but it became lost and buried in my makeup collection. I was recently looking for a nude gloss though and digging through my stash found this beauty. The texture is unlike any other gloss product but isn’t sticky and sticks around a long while. I like to put East End Snob all over my lips for colour and add London Posh to the centre of the lips to add dimension.

Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream | Recently I was on the hunt for a summer base that was light in feel but still had coverage - quite hard to come by. I picked up this CC Cream from Bourjois to test out and ended up loving it - full review here.

What are your current favourites?

~ Jade xx

Photography information

Canon 600D with 18-55mm lens, Canon 24mm lens or Sigma 70-300mm lens. Canon EOS M with 18-55mm lens or Canon 24mm lens. Any edited photos are edited using Photoshop CS6. Picture source is given for any photo used that is not directly ours.