The Bargain Beauty Bag – Back to College Edition

“You can never be overdressed or over educated” – Oscar Wilde.

It’s that time of year again… I’m so jealous of all my readers who are returning to college or starting out as “Freshers”. SO FECKIN’ JEALOUS. It feels as though I left college forty years ago (in reality, it was 2015) and I can safely say that I would return in a heartbeat. However, I really wish someone had taught me a little more about skincare and make up before I started out as a Fresher. I have the photographic evidence to prove that I was absolutely clueless.

Keeping that in mind, I decided to write a quick post to help you to assemble a college make up collection. Every single product in this post is going to cost less that €15 because let’s face it; you need to save every cent possible for shots and pizza.

 

Primer:

 

 

 

Catrice “Prime and Fine Beautifying Primer” – €4.95 from Meaghers Pharmacy:

I love this primer equally as much as my favourite high end one from theBalm. It’s an illuminating primer so if you have oily skin, it’s not what you’re looking for but if you love glowing skin, this is perfect. A little goes a long way and I usually apply it lightly to my entire face before applying foundation.

Flormar “Illuminating Primer” – €9.95 from Meaghers Pharmacy:

If you do have oily skin, this primer from Flormar is a great option. It’s also illuminating so it gives the skin a really fresh glow but, it has a slightly more “powdered” texture and this creates a matte effect when it’s applied directly to the skin. I would compare this one to Benefit’s “Porefessional” because it blurs the skin and really adds to the longevity of the other products that you use.

 

Foundation:

 

 

 

 

 

Flormar “CC Cream” – €11.95 from Meaghers Pharmacy:

During the day, I would recommend that you steer clear of full-coverage foundation. If you start using heavy duty make up when your skin is youthful, you’ll end up depending on it for the rest of your days. Irish girls tend to use foundation to mask their skin, rather than to simply even out their skin tone. Don’t fall into this trap – try using a light base throughout the day and if you need a little bit of extra coverage, invest in a good concealer.

This “CC Cream” from Flormar is a perfect lightweight base. There are a number of forumlas in the range that target different skin concerns and the shade adapts upon application to suit your skin tone. I’ve actually written a full post on this product which you can find here.

Catrice “All Matt Plus Shine Control Make Up” Foundation – €6.99 from Inish Pharmacy:

This is a heavy-duty foundation with lots of coverage. I wouldn’t use it during the day because it does feel a little heavier on the skin that my usual day time options. However, this foundation DOES NOT BUDGE. A light application wears for hours, without any shine so this is a great option for nights out. For just €6.99, you can dance the night away without worrying about your make up sliding off your face and hastily attempting to reapply it in the bathroom of a nightclub, while in a slightly intoxicated state.

 

Concealer:

 

 

 

 

Catrice “Camoflauge Cream 010” – €3.50 from Meaghers Pharmacy:

As you can probably tell at this stage, Catrice is one of my all time favourite budget beauty brands. They simply always seem to deliver on quality, at a ridiculously low price point. This “Camoflauge Cream” concealer is a great dupe for Benefit’s “Boi-ing” concealer. It covers blemishes without any effort and stays put, once you dust over the product lightly with some translucent powder. However, because this concealer is heavy enough to cover the most unsightly of blemishes, it’s not suitable for the under-eye area. It’s always a good idea to have two concealers in your make up kit; one for blemishes and redness and one for dark circles under the eyes.

Bourjois “Radiance Reveal Concealer” – €9.95 from Meaghers Pharmacy:

The “Radiance Reveal” concealer from Bourgois is a fabulous product for brightening the under eye area and concealing any trace of a sleepless night (or hangover). The formula is infused with hyaluronic acid which helps to plump skin and soften fine lines. To use this concealer simply apply it in an “upside-down triangle” and blend. It also works really well as a very soft highlighter if applied to the cheekbones and cupid’s bow.

 

Bronze and Contour:

 

 

Flormar “Bronzing Powder” – €9.95 from Meaghers Pharmacy:

This bronzer is absolutely beautiful. At only €9.95, it’s one of my favourite products in my make up kit and one that I reach for again and again, over more luxurious, high-end choices. Also, the bronzing powder is a huge product and will easily last you through your four years in college so it’s even better value that you would expect!

E.L.F Cosmetics “Baked Highlighter” – €7.25 from Cara Pharmacy:

Many of you will already know that E.L.F Cosmetics are relaunching in Ireland this month. I actually lived beside an E.L.F store while I lived in NYC, so I’m particular excited about this one. Now, if I’m being honest, I’ve found that the quality of the products from this brand vary from formula to formula but they do have some absolute gems. This highlighting powder is one of those gems. It’s a universally flattering shade and it’s surprisingly pigmented so a little goes a long way. This formula can be built up and used day or night.

 

Blush:

Sleek Blush Rose Gold Review

Sleek Blush in the Shade “Rose Gold” – €5.99 from Boots:

I feel like I never, ever shut up about this blusher from Sleek.  “Rose Gold” is a gorgeous peach pink colour with a sprinkle of highlight throughout the formula and it’s a great dupe for the Nars cult favourite “Orgasm”. In fact, I have both products in my make up collection and I always reach for the Sleek formula over the Nars one. A little goes a long way and this blusher blends beautifully, lasting for hours without needing to be topped up.

 

Eyeshadow:

 

L.O.V Cosmetics “Metal Cream Eyeshadow” – €8.99 from L.O.V Cosmetics:

Over the past few weeks, I have been familiarising myself with some of the L.O.V products and I have to say that I’m really impressed with their eye make up range. For years, I just didn’t get the cream eyeshadow trend. I found that the formulas didn’t hold well and creased after a few hours but this product is different. It’s far superior to other popular cream shadows, such as the one recently released by Inglot. The cream formula spreads easily across the eyelid in a thin layer and holds for the entire day. The shades also offer a subtle shimmer, which creates the illusion of bright eyes.

L.O.V Cosmetics “Magnetic Loose Eyeshadow” – €9.99 from L.O.V Cosmetics:

While the “Metal Cream Eyeshadow” is my favourite eyeshadow from the L.O.V range, that’s essentially just because I’m lazy and enjoy products that require minimal effort. The “Magnetic Loose Eyeshadow” is a product that I would avoid in the morning but one that I covet for evening wear. This loose pigment formula is nothing short of amazing. It can be used wet or dry to create an intensity level of your choice but personally, I love to use it wet to create a foiled look. I will actually write a full blog post on these babies, so stay tuned.

 

Lips:

Wet n Wild Lipstick Review

 

Wet n Wild “Megalast Lipstick” – €2.73 from Carthy.ie:

These lipsticks are a amazing and at this price, I recommend that you buy one in every colour. The formula is very similar to that of MAC’s matte lipsticks so they’re really long wearing but I do recommend wearing a lip balm underneath the product, to prevent your lips from becoming dry. All round, I love these lipsticks and during my college years, I never felt one iota of guilt for losing them on a night out – I can’t say the same for losing Chanel lippies that cost €30.

Rouge x

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Spring into Summer – The Everyday Make-Up Look

After posting this picture on Instagram a few weeks ago, I received a record amount of requests for a full blog post on the make-up look. During the summer, I tend to wear less and less make up – there’s nothing worse than sitting in the office at work, while your make up slides off your face and into a pool on the keyboard. It seems that lots of you feel the same way, and are looking for more information on the products that I reach for when I’m attempting to create this look.

My make up in the above image is really subtle, to create a “barely there” look. The image hasn’t been filtered or edited in any way so it should work as a pretty accurate guide. Here are the products and application techniques that I used:

 

Base:

 

Alpha-H “Daily Essential Moisturiser SPF 50+” (€32.95) – Available Here from Cloud10Beauty.com:

If you were watching my Insta-stories last week, you’ll know that I got sunburned at Body & Soul. It was cloudy all day, without any sign of sunshine and that goes to show that we REALLY should be wearing SPF every day. Usually, I’m really good at remembering to apply sunscreen and this product from Alpha-H is probably my favourite facial SPF. Every morning after cleansing, I apply a generous amount to my skin and allow it to sit for 5-10 mins before applying my make up. The formula is really lightweight and absorbs into the skin really quickly. I know that some people avoid using facial SPF products because they tend to leave a white residue on the skin, but this one definitely doesn’t – you won’t feel it on your face after about 10 mins. I think that this product would be suitable for all skin types.

Catrice “Prime and Fine Beautifying Primer” (€4.95) – Available Here from Meaghers Pharmacy:

This primer is a cheap as chips and it’s one of the best on the market. You can apply it to your entire face with or without foundation to create a radiant glow or, you can apply the formula to the high points of your face (cheek bones, cupid bow etc) and use it as a highlighter. I usually use it all over my face before applying foundation and then set with a powder. “Prime and Fine” creates the illusion of a good night’s sleep and holds your make up in place for the entire day.

Diego Dalla Palma “BB Cream 5-in-1” (€28.50) – Available Here from Diego Dalla Palma:

Alright, so I know that lots of people have mixed feelings when it comes to BB cream and to be honest, I’m one of them. I love the idea of a lightweight formula that provides minimal coverage, while evening out your skin tone but often, I find that BB Creams wear off the skin very quickly leaving a patchy effect. However, this product from Diego Dalla Palma is gorgeous. The formula applies really well and although it won’t last for the entire day, it wears off evenly and subtly. If you want more coverage after a few hours, you can simply top up at lunch time. Unfortunately, there are only 3 shades in the range so if you’re super pale or really tanned, you’ll probably struggle to find a match. In this photo, I’m wearing shade “50 Natural Beige” and although it’s a bit dark for my skin, I think it brightens up my complexion and gives me a healthy glow.

 

Eyes:

 

Too Faced “Brow Quickie” Brow Gel (€20) – Available Here from Debenhams:

Keeping in mind that I have “HD Brows”, maintained by Olivia in Allure Salon in Drumcondra, I tend to use very little brow product during the day. This brow gel from Too Faced is so easy to use. You simply comb the product through your eyebrows and the formula tints them and adds fibres to thicken them out slightly. The gel holds your eyebrows in place throughout the day and at €20, it lasts for ages so it’s a bargain.

Buxom “Lash Mascara” (€20) – Available Here from Debenhams:

Buxom is a new brand to Debenhams and I have to say that so far, I LOVE all of the products that I’ve tried. This mascara is simply divine. It’s a dark shade of black, separates all of my lashes and adds lots of length. If you love mascaras that create plenty of volume, this one probably isn’t for you but if like me, you love a natural look, Buxom’s “Lash Mascara” is a must-have. The formula isn’t waterproof but it’s really long-wearing and doesn’t clump or smudge at all. The mascara applies really smoothly so if you want to apply a few extra coats for added drama, you can coat the lashes evenly.

 

Cheeks and Lips:

 

Sleek Make Up “Blush” (€6.49) – Available Here from Boots.ie:

I’m always raving about this blush in the shade “Rose Gold” from Sleek. It’s an excellent dupe for Nars’ cult favourite “Orgasm” and at €6.49, it’s a fraction of the price. This blusher is highly pigmented and long-wearing so a little goes a long way. You’ll literally have this product for years before you need to replace it. There’s also a fleck of gold through the formula so it doubles up as a highlighter. I can’t get over the quality of this blush, at such a low price point.

Buxom “Big And Sexy Bold Gel Lipstick” (€18) – Available Here from Debenhams:

I’m going to write a full review post on this product because a few lines really can’t do it justice. The “Big and Sexy Bold Gel Lipstick” from Buxom has quickly become my favourite lipstick formula on the market. Yes, you read that right – my favourite. Anyone who reads Rouge Writing Hood regularly will probably have noticed that lipstick is my favourite kind of make up and this product is the best that I’ve tried. The shade that I’m wearing is “Rebel Rose” which is very like Tom Ford’s “India Rose”. The formula applies like a dream and just glides on to the lips. It’s really moisturising, even though it has a semi-matte finish and it’s basically all that any lipstick lover could ask for. If you could only treat yourself to one product from this post, I would tell you to choose this one!

 

And, there you have it – all of the products that I usually reach for to create a “barely there” make up look. I always set the products with a translucent powder and then I’m good to go.

What do you think? Do you prefer natural or dramatic make up looks? Let us know in the comment section or in the corresponding Instagram posts..

Rouge x

Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

“Cancer is something that touches everyone’s lives” – Ellen Pompeo.

 

When it comes to cancer, everyone has a story. Unfortunately, the disease is one that touches everyone’s lives. 1 in 10 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. And, sadly, every year around 2,900 cases are diagnosed and 660 women die from the disease in Ireland. But, it isn’t really about the statistics. It’s about your mother, your granny, your sisters and your daughters. For me, it’s about my fabulous aunt and godmother, Geraldine, who passed away after a long battle with cancer the year before last. She’s the reason that I’ve become a supporter of the cause.

So after a prolonged break from blogging, I thought I’d start back at Rouge Writing Hood with a really positive post. As most of you will already know, October is “Breast Cancer Awareness Month” and, I thought I would share a little info on how you can donate to the really worthwhile cause whilst stocking up on your beauty buys.

 

Make Up Forever: 

Make Up Forever Ireland.jpg

For the month of October, Make Up Forever will be donating 10% of the price of any lip products purchased to Breast Cancer Ireland. They have simultaneously launched a new collection of lipsticks, their “Artist Rouge Collection”. Said collection consists of 48 new shades – 33 cream formulas and 15 matte. You couldn’t find a better excuse to treat yourself! You can check out their selection on the MUFE website.

Make Up Forever are also encouraging the general public to pop into the store at 38 Clarendon Street, Dublin during the month of October to choose a lipstick shade and place their kiss mark on the ribbon shaped wall with a suggested donation of €2. If you do so, please tag me in your selfie with the hashtag #anotherkissonthewall – I would love to see them!

Cloud 10 Beauty:

cloud-10-beauty

For the third year running, Cloud 10 Beauty have partnered up with the Irish Cancer Society to donate €1 from every order placed on their website to breast cancer research. So what are you waiting for, get over to their website right now! If you would like me to write another post on my recommendations for purchase, just let me know in the comment section.

Again, if you purchase anything from Cloud 10 Beauty, why not tag me in a picture and let me know what you got using the hashtag #cloud10paintitpink – I would love to see your beauty hauls!

For more details on how you can help, or to donate directly to the Irish Cancer Society; you can visit their website here.

Rouge x

 

Juvi Designs – The “Initials” Collection.

“I never worry about diets. The only carrots that interest me are the number of carats in a diamond.” – Mae West.

 

After interviewing the lovely Julie Danz, as part of my “Irish Girl Boss Series” (view interview here), it’s safe to assume that I have become even more obsessed with Juvi Designs than I was before. If I had to choose one thing that I love most about the brand, it would be the fact that every piece is created with love and sentiment. Both Julie and Vincent really put their heart and soul into their creative brand. So, when I heard a few weeks ago that the dynamic duo were releasing a new collection, named the “Initials” collection, I sort of already knew that I would love it before I even got a glimpse of the pieces. I just didn’t realise how much I would love it – eeeek!

juvi-initials-necklace

If Sex and the City had aired in 2016, Ms Bradshaw would be sporting one of these beautiful necklaces instead of her famous “Carrie” chain. They’re so much more delicate and pretty than the initialled designs that we became sick of seeing in the late 90s. The chain and charms that make up these beautiful necklaces are sold separately, so they can be customised to create a unique piece. The picture above displays my initial and birthstone and as you can see, can be purchased in either sterling silver or gold vermeil. This would be a beautiful gift for ladies of all ages.  And, you’ll be surprised to hear that prices start at only €25.

juvi-stacking-rings

No Juvi collection would be complete without the addition of some bright and beautiful rings. Just look at those gorgeous gems! Pictured above are the new stacking rings which are the perfect compliment to the pretty initial necklaces. Available in both sterling silver and gold vermeil, with an array of gemstones to choose from; these rings can be worn alone or stacked.

Personally, I would stack these rings using the different birthstones which represent members of my family tree. This would be a lovely gift for mums or, the rings could be used as a grown up version of “friendship” rings (as could the necklaces). And finally, I think it would be a really cute idea to use these rings as gifts for your bridesmaids, choosing the gemstone associated with the month of your wedding. The possibilities are endless.

For more information on the collection, and a look at the different shades of gemstones, you can pop over to the Juvi Designs website. In the meantime, I will be adding these beauties to my Christmas wishlist – yes, I said the “C word” again!!

Let us know what you think in the comments section.

Rouge x

Too Faced “Born This Way” Foundation.

“Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful.” – Sophia Loren.

 

The “natural” look never goes out of fashion but very often, creating this look becomes quite time consuming. It’s difficult for even the most talented of make up artists to make a full-coverage foundation appear as though it’s “barely there”, while also concealing any blemishes and imperfections. Too Faced have recognised this problem and presented us with a solution; an “undetectable” medium to full coverage foundation called “Born This Way”. But, does this formula live up to the brand’s promises?

 

 

 

 

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation

“Born This Way” is an oil-free foundation which is infused with coconut water. The coconut water, together with hyaluronic acid, hydrates the skin which helps to maintain a healthy, youthful appearance throughout the day. I definitely think that this formula helps to maintain the illusion of radiant skin, even when I am depending on buckets full of coffee to help me through the week.

As I said, the formula is oil-free so I think that this foundation would be a great choice for those with acne-prone skin. Also, the coverage is great for concealing imperfections – even acne scars.

To apply this foundation; I like to dispense the formula directly on to a flat-head brush before applying it to my face in circular motions. This helps to create a flawless, even finish. I’ve found that the formula lasts really well throughout the day, lasting up to eight hours without any noticeable fade.

Too Faced “Born This Way” foundation is available here from Debenhams in 12 different shades. The shade that I’m wearing in the picture above is “Porcelain”.

So, what do you think? Have you tried this formula? Or, do you already swear by a different medium-full coverage foundation? Let us know in the comments.

Rouge x

Code Beautiful – Is It Time To Forget Fake Eyelashes?

“I’m killing you with them legs. Better yet, them thighs. Matter of fact it’s my smile, or maybe my eyes?” – Beyoncé.

I don’t know about you but I really struggle with false eyelashes. They’re messy and difficult to place correctly. Not to mention the fact that they often make a break for it during a dance off in a nightclub and end up stuck somewhere along your cheekbones – lovely.

So, for many years now, I have been searching for a mascara that gives a genuine false lash effect. And, I have found many, many great formulas but, definitely none as impressive as Code Beautiful’s “Forget False Lashes” and “VLM Mascara” combo.

Code Beautiful “Forget False Lashes” (Available Here):

 

Code Forget False Lashes

Code Beautiful’s “Forget False Lashes” is an eyelash primer which is designed to plump up sparse and short hair. The formula is a beige/grey colour but becomes invisible upon applying a top coat of black mascara. “Forget False Lashes” is used to coat the eyelashes from root to tip by wriggling the wand back and fourth during application. I always pay particular attention to tips of my lashes in order to achieve the illusion of long lashes.

I was amazed by the results provided by this formula. The micro-fibres in the product cling to lashes, genuinely giving instant volume. Now, this step does add a minute or two to my make up routine in the morning because I like coat my lashes precisely and evenly, to avoid clumping but, it’s definitely not as time consuming as applying eyelash glue!

Code Beautiful “VLM Mascara” (Available Here):

Code VLM Review

I am in LOVE with this formula! It’s blacker than black, glossy and adds serious volume. “VLM Mascara” is created using wax and vitamins, so the product promises to be kind to eyelashes and promote growth. The mascara is also paraben free.

I use this product by adapting Code Beautiful’s “Roots, Wriggle and Roll” technique and again, concentrate on the tips of the lashes to add extra length. I’m really impressed by the anti-clumping, waterproof formula which actually lasts all day, unlike some high-end mascaras that advertise “12 hour wear”.

Together, the combination of “Forget False Lashes” and “VLM Mascara” is every beauty addicts’ dream! See the results below:

On another note, I’m off to NYC tomorrow morning and Code Beautiful actually sell a mini version of their “VLM Mascara” for holidaymakers. You can find it here from Meaghers Pharmacy for only €15. It might be a great excuse to try the product before you buy the full size!

Now tell me, have you tried these formulas or do you already have a favourite mascara to recommend? Let us know in the comments!

Rouge x

Moschino “Fresh Couture” Fragrance.

The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra. – Jimmy Johnson.

As any regular reader of Rouge Writing Hood will already know, I am a self-confessed fragrance fanatic. In my opinion, the beauty of scent is found in its ability to resurrect memories. For me, choosing a new perfume is a very intimate process.

Keeping that in mind, let me introduce you to Moschino’s “Fresh Couture” – the fragrance that I will forever associate with summer ’16. It is simply divine!

 


First of all – check out that packaging. Moschino have stated that “the concept of this fragrance was to juxtapose the most mundane and commonplace of all products, the household cleaner, with something so precious – the juice of a luxury brand’s fragrance”. And, by doing so they have elevated a seemingly ordinary item, moulding it into something extraordinary. I adore the quirky, contemporary interpretation.

I’m a huge fan of strong, masculine scents so I was rather sceptical of the electric blue liquid wrapped up in this fun bottle. For some reason, I assumed it would be a very sweet, sugary fragrance. But, I couldn’t have been further from the truth. This is a gorgeous woody fragrance, with scattered floral notes. Base notes of white patchouli and ambrox give a sensual undertone to the scent while top notes of mandarin, bergamot and ylang yalng bring soft, femininity to the party.

 

img_6680

 

“Fresh Couture” is a gorgeous, fresh fragrance. This one will be perfect for anyone who adores dark, sensual fragrances during the winter but wants to shake things up for summer. It should also be noted that the scent has impressive lasting power – I don’t feel in necessary to carry this one around in my handbag with me.

Moschino “Fresh Couture” is available in pharmacies nationwide and here at Debenhams. At the time of publishing, Debenhams are offering a “Try it First” sample with every online order, giving you a chance to test the fragrance before you decide to fall in love with it like I did.

What do you think? Do you usually change your scent for summer? Let us know in the comments section.

Rouge x