porefessional posts

EMPTIES: July

July 13, 2014

july-empties-makeup-fashion-beauty-blog-ELNfashion

So, last week I graduated with a 2:1 BA Hons English Literature with Creative Writing (and a cheeky first in my dissertation), no biggie – and now I’m on the sad pursuit of the graduate gravy train: population 357485792849347598370187349875. If you know of any copywriting or social media marketing vacancies going (quite literally anywhere, I’m game for a change of scenery), hit me up if you’d be so kind. If you provide me with a successful link, I’ll provide you with a lifetime supply of Jaffa Cakes (or “insert favourite cake/biscuit” – but you’re a lemon, ’cause Jaffa Cakes are the edible bee’s knees). Until I manage to secure a job and shake the dole-y shroud that’s currently drowning me, I’ll be well and truly in your faces through the medium of the ol’blog – apologies in advance if you get sick of my overly verbose ramblings and shoddy iPhone snaps.

Today I have my second ever empties post, primarily because I am almost professionally naff at keeping hold of products until their cessation, mainly because I a) lose them b) have commitment issues and discard everything to the back of a drawer within a week. However, a year after my last empties post, we have something of a breakthrough – and this is only because I’ve just moved out of my flat and unearthed a wealth of sad, abandoned empty products, huddled together in the nooks and crannies of my old dorm room.

MAC Lipstick in ‘Russian Red’ – £15

I’ve just about lost count of how many of these I have collated and finished/snapped/had stolen from my younger sister – but this will be an eternal repurchase for me. I mean, when is pillar-box red going to go out of style?  I’ve actually somehow managed to time it so I’ve ran out of two of these, so I’m currently using Viva Glam 1, which is a surprisingly nice red despite its pink tone in the tube. 10/10

MAC Sheertone Blush in ‘Peaches’ – £18

Another must-have in the empties pile is this delightfully summery shade, again from MAC. For anyone else in the paler-than-pale club, you’ll be with me on the importance of finding that perfect medium between a subtle injection of life into the cheeks, and the ultimate fail of clown cheeks (which are disturbingly easy to achieve in bad lighting). I’m on my second one of these now and will be tempted to find a pinkier shade next. 9/10

Benefit Porefessional – Sample 

If you’ve ever picked up a magazine or basically, if you have a vagina and a reasonable interest in beauty, you’re probably as inundated with these samples as I am: does anyone ever actually invest in Porefessional? Once my decent stash has disintegrated (still got at least one more brand new one), I’ll still be very tempted to buy the fullsize of this product, despite it being a rather pricey £24.50 bank-drainer. Its non-oil formula is great for temperamental skin like my own, although I have been prone to the occasional major breakout whilst using this product, but I don’t think it’s solely to blame. It really does help with base application and I like the little protective layer between my skin and my rather thick slap. 8/10

MAC Prep & Prime Transparent Powder – £20

For probably the first time with a MAC product, I’m going to say it: this isn’t much to write home about, guys. Granted, it definitely does some favours with regards to its truly transparent pigmentation – practically every powder (Rimmel’s Stay Matte aside, surprisingly) I’ve ever used leaves me looking a strange shade of Wotsit, but it didn’t exactly do much for the overall effect. Minimal mattefying occurred and it gave a slightly more polished finish, yet I was never convinced. Then it went and disintegrated on me, so I don’t think I’ll be after this one again. 6/10

CK Shock – Prize

I won this alongside a bunch of other Beauty Cupboard treasures from Cosmopolitan last year, and decided to give it a whirl once I’d ran out of my trusty Gucci Guilty – it’s pretty nice! I’m usually one for musky floral scents, so this was a light change for the summer and saw me through until I finally got my paws on Viktor + Rolf’s Flowerbomb, which has to be one of the most moreish scents going – although I’m getting mildly bewildered by the amount of people thinking it smells like Palma Violets. 8.5/10

Benefit They’re Real Mascara – £19.50 

I did a review of this mascara a while back, go have a gander! 9/10

Review: Birchbox January 2014 Edition.

January 14, 2014

DSCF7335

Beauty subscription boxes are a funny one with me: all well and good when you’re in the zone of ordering one and getting excited for its dispatch, but an absolute tyranny of fear and often disappointment when you realise it’s choc-ful with a load of shite you’re not going to touch, ever. I used to subscribe to SheSaidBeauty boxes, but I got absolutely bored to tears with the products in there and realised I could put that £12 a month towards stuff that I’d, y’know, actually use – Christ, I could’ve been laden with Chanel skincare products by now – the amount of blue boxes I have in my room. Kudos though, those boxes are about the best thing that came out of my torrid affair with subscriptions boxes: those little babies come in handy! Anyway, yadda yadda, get to the point Nash. Recently, Birchbox contacted me and asked if I’d like to try out their January box and, being a curious cat and freebie creep that I am, I obliged. Worryingly: I’m not completely disappointed with what they sent me…

DSCF7336
DSCF7337

  • Vasanti Detox Nutrient-Rich Purifying Facial Cleanser 20ml – full size (150ml) retails at £18

Christ alive, this product has to win the award for ‘Most Waffly Product Name’, if nothing else. I just tried this stuff and, given its undeniably highly nutrient-rich formula (we’re talking attributes packed with shea butter/fatty acids/grapeseed and omega 3), I’m either placeboing out of my arse – or this product has made my skin reasonably smooth. We’ll see if it helps shift these pesky breakout spots around my chin first, eh?

  • Radial Bee Venom Moisturiser 5ml – full size (150ml) retails (at a staggering) £150

Weirdly, it’s a little bit like Birchbox read my mind on this one. I have been trawling Holland and Barrett stores country-wide trying to get my hands on their Manuka Doctor bee venom moisturiser and, lo and behold, they throw in this far superior little number. Upon first applications, I had flashbacks to getting stung on the bum outside of Boots as a kid – terrifying images of potential allergic reactions and my face blowing up so much that my sizeable bottom lip just decided to combust. Fortunately, this did not occur – but the effects thus far (four days of usage) have been incredibly dull. I’ve had good skin days, I’ve had bad skin days. I wouldn’t pay £150 for that imbalance.

  • Benefit ThePorefessional 7.5ml – full size (22ml) retails at £24.50

I can’t turn my nose up at this product as a devoted lover of Benefit, and the owner of a quickly depleting original sample that this one will proudly become successor to soon. If you’re a beauty blogger, you should really already know how essential this piece is. Nice one, Birchbox.

  • Premae Anatomy Nutrients Instant Renewal Body Oil 20ml – full size (100ml) retails at £9.50

As a pale lady, with a tendency to resemble something on death’s door due to bad circulation, I tend to avoid body oils, as they only seem to exacerbate the problem. However, in the warm, sunny light of my yellow-tinted desk lamp, it looks pretty good on my arms, and they feel soft enough. The sunflower (mate, do sunflowers even have a smell?) and rosewood scent has got me longing for holidays.

  • Itsu Miso Soup 25g sachet – full size (6 pouches) £11

After recently embarking upon a vegan adventure (that is, slightly less dramatically, after doing a month last year – I have decided to go vegan since the New Year), I’m looking for all the vegan friendly nosh I can sniff out. Not sure why that sounded quite so dirty, but we shall continue… I haven’t tried this yet as, after my last packet of Pop Chips that I picked up at an LCM show got devoured this afternoon, they will be going into my emergency food stash. Sounds nice enough to me, anyway. Not sure I could afford to keep that habit up though, so I’m kinda hoping I’m not a fan…

  • Philip Kingsley Moisture Balancing Conditioner 20ml – full size (250ml) £19

This looks remarkably like toothpaste, and I just squirted half the tube up my nose trying to find out what it smells like for you. I hope you appreciate this, guys. It smells pretty high class – but a little too Chanel No.5 for me: absolutely lovely, but not right for my juvenile twenty-year-old self. Good call though guys: I’ve just ran out of Herbal Essences – cheers.

All in all, I’m pretty pleased with the box. I’m half-tempted to opt in for the next one just to see if they manage to pull it out of the bag twice in a row, but I’ll keep you posted on Twitter about that. Everyone else though: what’s in yours this month? Are you happy with it? Link your reviews below!

REVIEW: Bare Minerals Prime Time Brightening Foundation Primer

June 13, 2013

I can’t say I’ve ever been crazy about buying primers before: my skin’s reasonably quite ruly when it comes to oiliness and I’ve recently taken the plunge to not wear foundation unless I’m going out. However, of the ones I’ve tried, this one is definitely fighting me for Benefit’s ‘Porefessional’ #1 title in my must-haves, upon receiving it recently. That said, there are huge differences between the two products: the Bare Minerals targets redness, which is portrayed in its yellow-based tone, whereas, the Porefessional is more of an all-rounder which would be suitable for all skin types. This makes me a big fan of the Bare Minerals, as I’m very pale skinned with an annoying pinky undertone, which is coming out in the sunshine as a glorious reddy undertone – how gloriously attractive that sounds. A thin layer of this beauty smoothed in after moisturiser and I am good to go. Here’s a little swatch on my paleness: (don’t fear, it rubs in to a less scary colour!)

At £21 for a 30ml product – but only £17 through QVC, it does seem a little steep – but each application only requires the tiniest of presses on the pump, so it should be cost-effective and long lasting. It’s definitely a good product to use if you’re about to embark on a wild night out, great for avoiding the oil slick/patchy red-face-man look after you’ve been throwing too many shapes at the latest Justin Timberlake song. It’s also proved pretty good as a standalone beauty product; applying after moisturiser on one of the bizarre heatwave days we’ve had of late (cue pensive stare to the now-rain drenched window), can be really effective if you fancy getting a bit au naturel. This is especially fun if you’re freckly.

There is one thing that I disliked about this product and, annoyingly, it could be a big off-putter to some: the scent is strong. I’m talking really strong. Nothing repugnant or bad-smelling, just mildly medicinal to the extent that I’m always quite dubious about putting it under my eyes, lest they get all watery. I still use and would recommend the product, I would just suggest that in future, it’s made with less perfume. I mean, why does primer need to be scented anyway?

I would’ve done a picture of me actually wearing the product but I have a nasty heat/stress rash on my face at the moment, so you’re not going to get a clear indication of how it works. Grr. I will update the post with pictures when I’m a bit less haggard-looking.

Pros: Works effectively – covers up red marks/smoothes surface, little goes a long way.

Cons: Smells a bit like you don’t want it invading your retinas. Then again, I don’t think the smell of anything would make you want it on/in/around your retinas. Ahem.

Would I recommend: Yes. Particularly to those with normal/combination skin of a lighter tone, with a pink undertone.

Tweet me @Ebzo


Ebony. 25. Manchester.
Marketing Manager who likes to mouth off on here about stuff she cares about. Expect mental health, Borderline Personality Disorder, and reviews - from restaurants, to books, to fashion. Talks to cats more than people, but seemingly has a lot to say.
ebonylaurenn@gmail.com