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If you read my earlier post about Lush cosmetics, you’ll know that I went on a little shopping spree this weekend – which reached its peak when I was approached by Sophie from the Selfridges Illamasqua counter. Prior to this visit, I was a complete Illamasqua virgin, having only seen and read wonderful things about it in the past. However, due to uncharacteristic rise in my bank balance lately, I thought I’d treat myself…

I am a lipstick addict. I am seldom seen without a red lip – as a result of M.A.C’s Russian Red matte stick, so upon being asked if I wanted to try anything, I headed for their amazingly pigmented lipstick selection. Predictably, I zoned into the deep reds, but Sophie suggested that I tried a bright pink – their Eurydice to be precise. I’d never tried one before, for fear I’d look ridiculous with my super pale skin, or that it’d make my teeth look yellow – but it was actually brilliant. She put a little of their ‘Intense Lipgloss’ over the top in ‘Frenzy’ and I had a completely new look. (Click on the pictures for a link to buy!)

Then the real temptation kicked in – she asked if I wanted my eyes doing. Now, unfortunately for someone with such an interest in these kinds of things, I am blessed with shaky hands and a slight inability when it comes to eyeshadow looks. So I asked her if she could try out some kind of smoky eye on me, given I love them so – I just hadn’t invested my time and money into perfecting the look for myself. She used their cream pigment in ‘Hollow’ to prime my eyelids, all the way to the brow bone to make a good base for the darker colours. Then, she drew a line on the crease of my eyelid in their medium pencil ‘Fidelity’ and used a blending brush to bring it down into my lash line, using the same colour to fill in my waterline. To finish off the colour, she blended in a generous amount of their ‘Burst’ eye shadow (a popping blue that I just had to buy) – which really brought out my blue-y green eyes. A quick slick of black kohl on my lash line and I was good to go – striking smoky eye in no time!

We left Selfridges to carry on shopping and see how we felt about the make-up in different lights, then planned to return before we left. When we got back to Selfridges, I had decided to bite the bullet and buy the ingredients for the smoky eye look – but Sophie was nowhere to be found. So I explained my predicament to another girl on the counter and, after realising that the brand is pretty damn expensive for a 19-year-old student, I asked her how I could get the stuff I needed without spending more than around £50. She told me to go for their new Neutral Palette:

The palette contains (clock-wise from top-left) ‘Stealth’ – a lovely creamy buttermilk colour, ‘Vintage’ which is exclusive to the palette, the blacker than black ‘Obsidian’ which creates a very dramatic effect and ‘Wolf’, a lovely chocolatey brown which is perfect for blending my ‘Burst’ with.

I was absolutely tempted but at £45 for the palette and one other eyeshadow, I was still a little hesitant. So, the lady offered me either a free nail varnish in one of three colours or their illuminator. So I opted for their ‘Throb’ – a deep blood red (I’m so damn vampy!) and ended up buying it all. One tip though – you don’t have to go all out with the essentials to use these things – I popped into Superdrug the day after and bought myself an own-brand eyeshadow brush which works perfectly and a Barry M top/base coat so I didn’t stain my nails with the brightness – super cheap!

In short, I absolutely love this brand and I can admit that I am definitely a convert – I managed to stay away from M.A.C despite being so terribly close to their counter. The colours of this brand are sensational, to the extent that the brand is adored by drag queens all over – due to the amazing colour combinations and fierce looks they can achieve with their products. I definitely suggest that you check out some of their products if you fancy treating yourself to some long-lasting quality make-up. And may I add, Sophie was absolutely lovely and really helpful – so a shoutout if by any chance you would be reading this, haha!

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