Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencil – Review.

According to follower feedback on Instagram and Twitter, a great many of you are big fans of Urban Decay cosmetics. So, it is safe to assume that lots of you have tried their “Matte Revolution Lipstick”. This lipstick boasts a long-lasting, budge-proof formula, loved by beauty junkies all over since release. However, time and time again, we have faced the same dilemma – we needed new lip liners to match the impressive colour range!

Thankfully, Urban Decay take customer feedback seriously and have launched FIVE new shades of their fabulous “24/7 Glide On Lip Pencils” to match the bold and neutral colours of the “Matte Revolution Lipsticks”. I was lucky enough to get my hands on two of the lip pencils, in the shades “Blackmail” (deep berry wine) and “Bad Blood” (deep red).

  

Firstly, let us take a second to appreciate the names placed upon these products – talk about “beauty with an edge” – they had me at hello. The pencils feature shade matched barrels which make it easy to find your desired colour, even when your make-up bag is jam-packed.

The formula is comprised of vitamin E, jojoba oil and cottonseed oil so even though the liners provide a matte finish, they don’t feel dry or “cakey” on the lips. As with all Urban Decay products, the pigmentation and lasting power of the liners are amazing.

So, how do they apply? Well, you can wear them alone with a slick of gloss on top or, you can use the pencils to define lip shape before applying your matching “Matte Revolution Lipstick”. Personally, I think the decision is based on each individual shade. I loved wearing “Bad Blood” alone, without lipstick. But, because “Blackmail” is such a vibrant, dark shade; I preferred to layer it with the matching lipstick. That said, “Blackmail” is my favourite shade from the new range – it screams sophisticated, vintage vamp!

  

Urban Decay are killing it lately – did you read my piece on their newly launched Vice 4 Palette? They’re quickly becoming my favourite brand of the moment.

You can purchase the “24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencils” online from Debenhams for €18.50 (10% off at time of publishing).

Let me know what you think in the comments. Would you dare to wear these bold shades?

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The Christmas Gift Guide – For Him.

From Dads, to brothers, to boyfriends – men can be a difficult bunch to choose presents for. So, in order to save you the hassle, we have compiled a little list of suggestions – don’t worry, you can thank us later.

Painted Clans – Hand Painted Contemporary Irish Crests.

Painted Clans Family Crest

 

I guarantee you that every single Daddy in Ireland would be absolutely delighted with the gift of a hand painted family crest this Christmas. Irish men take huge pride in their family identity and these pieces from Painted Clans provide the opportunity to create a new heirloom, which could be passed down through generations.

The artist, Brendan McCarey, hand paints each crest using acrylic paint – making it a “one of a kind” piece, unique to your family. On the back of the frame, there is a small piece of information about the family history and a column explaining the meaning of each element of the crest. I will actually be giving my own Dad one of these personalised works of art on Christmas morning, so watch this space for a full post on the finished piece.

For more information, or to request a digital preview of your family/country crest you can contact Brendan at paintedclans@gmail.com.

The Old Jameson Distillery – Guided Tour.

Jameson Gifts For Him

 

Now, this is one that I think I would enjoy myself. Visit the original Bow Street distillery and discover the Jameson Irish Whiskey story, where the last chapter is drinkable. The guided tour provides some interesting background information on the brand created by John Jameson, followed by a tasting experience and the presentation of the “Jameson Whiskey Tasting Certificate”. The best part? Tickets are only €13.50 if you book them online at Jameson.

Tommy Hilfiger – Shirt.

Tommy Hilfiger - Gifts for Him

 

If you want to go down the fashion route, I am a firm believer that you cannot go wrong with a classic Tommy Hilfiger shirt. They are well fitted, elegant and extremely attractive – any man would be lucky to own one. The plain navy option is a favourite of mine, and this one is available here. For more colours and styles, you can check out the Tommy Hilfiger website.

Ziaja Men – Christmas Set.

Ziaja Men Gift Set

 

If you are sick to death of the men in your life “borrowing” your expensive moisturiser, why not treat them to some skincare of their own? Ziaja are a great brand who provide high-quality products, at affordable prices. This set includes a moisturiser, shower gel and anti-perspirant for less than €10. Yes, less than a tenner – that even leaves you with some excess cash for make-up treats. All Ziaja products and gift sets are available at originalbeauty.ie.

Jack Black – Beard Grooming Kit.

Beard Grooming

 

“Movember” may be over, but it looks like beards are here to stay. So, if any of the men in your life have joined the beard brigade lately, they’re sure to appreciate this beard grooming kit from Jack Black. “No frills attached”, just soothing formulas to keep skin and facial hair moisturised and healthy. This one is available for €37.95 from Cloud 10 Beauty.

Hugo Boss The Scent – Aftershave.

Hugo Boss

 

You cannot go wrong with the gift of high-end aftershave and, Hugo Boss produce some great options. “Hugo Boss The Scent” is their latest offering – filled with notes of ginger and leather, it has a lovely rich, full-bodied scent. This one is available in pharmacies nationwide and online at Debenhams for €91 (100ml).

Ted Baker – Leather Wallet.

Ted Baker Leather Wallet.jpg

 

Every man needs a good quality leather wallet. This one is classic, elegant and will hold it’s value for years – a worthy investment. Available from Ted Baker for €75.

 

And that is a wrap. Let me know if you have any further gift giving ideas – I have four brothers to purchase for so I would love to hear them.

Rouge x

 

Couleur Caramel Natural Make Up -Review.

I think we can all agree that Irish women have a tendency to “over-do” it when it comes to make-up application. We are guilty of piling on product, in an attempt to hide imperfections; rather than using it to enhance and highlight our natural beauty. This is a fact that has irked me for years. Why do we feel the need to hide behind masks of foundation, concealer and contour?

I have always admired the manner in which Parisian women ooze self-confidence and sophistication. And, the majority do so without plastering their faces with make-up. So, when the lovely ladies at V Claire Beauty Centre contacted me about the launch of the all-natural French cosmetic brand, Couleur Caramel, I was very intrigued.

Favoured by celebrities including Eva Longoria, Couleur Caramel produce make-up products which are free from parabens, artificial dyes and fragrances. Often, conventional make-up products are filled with oils and chemicals which cause skin to become dry and irritated. However, because Couleur Caramel use only organic, plant-based ingredients; their formulas treat problem skin rather than simply masking it. So, let’s take a look at some of my favourite products from the range.

Couleur Caramel BB Cream (€30).

Couleur Caramel BB Cream

 

Now, if you cannot part with your full-coverage foundation, this BB cream probably won’t be your cup of tea. However, if you love a “barely there” make-up look, then you will fall in love with this formula. Filled with hyaluronic acid, this product regenerates tired looking skin, leaving a flawless and illuminated finish. I really like the BB cream because rather than masking my pale complexion, it simply brightens it with a healthy glow. The product spreads and blends easily to allow for quick application and a little goes a long way so the tube should last ages. This one has become my “go to” product, particularly for daytime and work wear.

Couleur Caramel Silk Powder (€26).

Couleur Caramel Silk Powder

 

Regardless of skin type, this finishing powder is perfect for everyone. It is so difficult to find a powder which reduces shine without appearing patchy and caked, but this product achieves the impossible. The formula is extremely light-weight on skin, but also provides instant mattifying effect which lasts for hours. My only issue is that the packaging is not quite secure enough, allowing for minor handbag spillages. However, this can be overlooked given that the packaging of Couleur Caramel products is eco-friendly and bio-degradable.

Couleur Caramel Pearly Lipstick (€17).

Couleur Caramel Lipstick

 

I have been wearing this lipstick in the shade “No. 261 Gourmand Pink” non-stop for the past two weeks. The formula provides a lovely, natural pink sheen which gives lips a healthy, moisturised appearance. Highly pigmented, the colour holds for hours without damaging the lips. So, if you suffer with dry lips during the winter, give this lipstick a try – you won’t be disappointed.

  

All in all, I love the products that I have sampled from this range. Each of them strive to achieve a natural, healthy look. And, I can vouch for the benefits – my skin definitely appears more healthy after using the products for just two weeks. Who could argue with excellent quality, achieved naturally and in an environmentally friendly manner, without any animal testing?

For more details you can visit the Couleur Caramel website or call into the V Claire Beauty Centre for a quick swatch and sample.

Let me know what you think in the comments – have you ever considered using eco-friendly products?

Rouge x

My Happy Place – In Association with Independent.ie.

For their “Mind Yourself” campaign, Independent.ie recently asked me to discuss “my happy place”. At first, I was reluctant. I am one of the lucky ones. One of the few individuals who can say that they have never felt the force of mental illness. Sure, I have experienced bad days – even the kind which make you wish that you could curl up underneath your duvet, never to resurface. I have embarrassed myself more times that I could count. I have spoken out of turn, letting friends down in the process. And, some friends have let me down. I have witnessed the loss of loved ones and the loss of hope. But, I have never quivered with fear at the thought of leaving my own bedroom. I have never been catapulted into a frenzy of anxiety over seemingly mundane tasks. I have never been consumed by the darkness of depression which dims and drowns all light.

So, what authority do I have to speak about mental health? Initially, I believed that I had none . Then, on November 13th 2015, Paris fell victim to a series of terrorist attacks and I sat in awe, horrified by the actions of a small percentage of the human race. I looked on as the safety of humanity skated further along thin ice, with the cracks deepening and expanding under pressure. And, as my brain began to reel in shock, I quickly packed a bag, purchased a bus ticket and sought my happy place.

Aged 10, I was an only child. Slightly selfish, I had complete confidence in my position as “the family favourite”. That was, until my father sat me down and spoke of “a new baby brother or sister”. In that moment, I experienced a crunching apprehension in my stomach – I didn’t appreciate change, and I certainly didn’t want to share my family. Months passed as I battled my child-like jealousy until eventually, I was introduced to my new sibling. A tiny, wrinkled baby who resembled a potato was passed into my arms and I quickly realised that I was no longer the most important person in my own world. I had found my happy place.

Twelve years later, I have four crazy brothers. And, each weekend I travel back from Dublin to our home in the countryside to see them. I especially enjoy these trips in the winter, when we all curl up on the sofa for movie night as an open fire crackles and pops in the background. With chocolate cake on our laps and cups of tea in our hands, we will sit in calm, comfortable silence – at least until one of the two toddlers screech for attention.

I enjoy embarrassing all four of the boys, with the eldest two becoming “too cool” to hang out with their practically ancient sibling. I laugh as their lips curve with a smirk at the sound of their own jokes, much like their sister. I listen to the rambling details of the latest GAA matches, or at least pretend to. I nag them about school, and question their progress. And most importantly, I question their understanding of the concept of morality. In a world full of violence and dread, I wish that these four children need never grow up but, I will settle for them growing up, without bitterness or hatred for people that they don’t even know.

So, as I sit here tonight with a toddler sized baby brother cuddled under each arm – I urge every reader to find their own happy place, and hold on to it. For many, you will find your happiness in family – a never ending source of trust, love and loyalty. Should the darkness come to claim you, fight back, speak out and seek help. Be not afraid – there is always light.

 

The Balm – Meet Matt(e) Hughes – Review.

Oh my god, this one has been sent from lipstick heaven. My only question is, why does anyone wear anything else? The Balm is an entirely new brand to my make-up bag. I mean, I’ve heard of it, with many bloggers raving about the cult favourite “Mary Lou Manizer”, but I had never tried any of the products until last week. Now, there’s no turning back.

“Meet Matte Hughes” is a liquid lipstick which creates a gorgeous matte finish and while it dries on your lips, it doesn’t dry out your lips. This means no fading and more importantly, no lip prints. We can finally eat and drink without fearing lipstick smear!

I was lucky enough to be sent the shade “Committed”, which is a fabulous nude/pink colour:

  

This product is really easy to apply using the “doe-foot” applicator which means that I haven’t been using lip liner. Look how huge my lips are! That one is all thanks to the mint extract in the formula, which acts as a natural lip-plumping agent. Kylie Jenner, you won’t be needing those fillers any longer.

Obviously, when you fall in love with a lipstick formula, you need to purchase it in many shades. Well, perhaps only if you have a shopping addiction. But, for once, I was delighted that I do. You probably all know that I favour a classic red lip above all other make-up looks so check this out:

This shade is “Loyalty” and holy smokes, is it fabulous! Again, with the lip plumping and eeeeek that colour – the perfect red!

“Meet Matte(e) Hughes” liquid lipstick is available in 8 different shades – all of which are on my wishlist. You can purchase here at Cloud 10 Beauty for only €15.50, which really is a bargain for such a high-quality product.

What is your favourite shade? Help me choose my next one!

Rouge x

Urban Decay Vice 4 – Review.

Beauty with an edge.

Anyone who follows me on Instagram will know that recently, my love for Urban Decay has been growing by the minute. I was a huge fan of the brand when I was younger, collecting palette after palette, but when I moved to Dublin for college and started spending a hefty portion of my income on my social life, I put the obsession to the back of my mind. However, I am delighted to report that the fabulous people at Urban Decay have decided to re-awaken my fascination with their products. Behold, the “Vice 4” palette.

Urban Decan Vice 4

Aged 22, I had relegated myself to a world filled with neutral coloured, bronze and beige eyeshadows. Why on earth did I do that? What happened to the girl who loved a pop of purple or green on her eyelids? Well, she’s back with a bang because I won’t be putting this beautiful palette down for the foreseeable future.

Urban Decay Vice 4

Inspired by Urban Decay’s vintage shade “Oil Slick”, the limited edition “Vice 4” palette is a collection of 20 brand new shades with rich, deep jewel tones. Like all Urban Decay shadows, they have a seriously strong pigment and are long-lasting – especially when paired with a good primer. This palette is a collection of mattes and shimmers, which can be layered for either subtle or high impact.

I was lucky enough to be invited to a master-class with one of Urban Decay’s leading make-up artists, Danielle Roberts, who demonstrated how to use the palette to create fabulous, colourful looks. Danielle also passed on some fabulous tips, such as dampening her brush with setting spray before using the “micro-glitter” formula shades to create a foiled effect. My favourites of the shades she used were “Bitter” and “Flame”, which I used to replicate the look she demonstrated, pictured below:


This palette comes with a double sided brush, a gorgeous case which can be used as a small make-up bag and a huge mirror. As with all Urban Decay shadows, there will be a little fall-out from the product so I advise completing your eye make-up before applying foundation.


“Vice 4” is available here from Debenhams who, at the time of publishing, were offering customers 10% off. I think that this one would make the perfect Christmas gift for anyone who you wish to impress.

What do you think of the shades?

Rouge x