Yumi Lashes Lash Enhancement – Review

I can actually hear your eyes rolling as you read the title of this blog post. Yes, I know – we’re all sick to death of beauty “fads” and treatments that promise miracles and don’t deliver. “Fat Freezing” and “Body Sculpting”, I’m looking at you. So, I think that you’re entitled to be skeptical about the Yumi Lashes treatment that is marketed as “a revolutionary method of creating volume or straightening lashes”, if the brand do say so themselves. I’ll even admit that I thought it was another beauty gimmick when I first heard about it. However, when my local salon Essential Beauty Skin & Laser in Bailieborough, County Cavan started offering the treatment, I knew there had to be some truth to the marketing spiel – the girls in the salon never offer a treatment that they don’t believe in.

 

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My cousin actually booked the treatment before I did and her results were amazing but she has naturally full, long lashes so I still didn’t know if it would work as well on my own. However, I decided to bite the bullet before I went on my holidays to Portugal a few weeks ago and I’m so glad that I did.

Firstly, I have to warn you that you absolutely MUST have a patch test before you have the Yumi treatment because the results would be far from pretty if you’re allergic to the tint or the glue. The treatment takes approximately 40 minutes, and it’s a lot more relaxing than I expected it to be. I have pretty sensitive eyes so I was bracing myself for a half an hour of torture but, I was in great hands with Ciara at Essential Beauty Skin and Laser.

The Yumi treatment is basically as sophisticated “tint and perm” for eyelashes. The process begins with the application of relaxing eye masks to hydrate your under-eye area while a silicone mould is applied to your upper eyelid. The upper lashes are then lifted towards the silicone to curl them and serum is applied to set the curl. It’s not all as glamorous as it sounds because the curling solution smells disgusting but, that’s something that we can let slide. After the curl is set, the upper lashes are tinted. Then, the adhesive is removed you’re left with fabulous eyelashes. Removal is a bit uncomfortable and as with all eyelash tinting treatments; stings like bejaysus. It’s definitely tolerable though and I think that the photo below demonstrates that it’s worth a few seconds of discomfort for the results.

 

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For 24 hours after the treatment, you can’t allow your lashes to get wet and you have to make sure that you touch them as little as possible – which is actually a lot more difficult than it sounds. As you can see, the difference is really impressive and two weeks later, I’m still getting compliments on my lashes. Yumi say that the results last 9 – 12 weeks (as long as the natural life cycle of your lashes) but the girls in Essential Beauty Skin and Laser said that for some people, the life cycle is 6 – 9 weeks.

The beauty industry is one that thrives on illusion and often we’re presented with nothing but photos of airbrushing, heavy make up and false lashes. Sometimes it’s refreshing to opt for a more natural look and that’s exactly what the Yumi treatment caters for. Here’s a picture of my natural eyelashes, after the treatment, without mascara:

 

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Of course, the effect of the Yumi treatment intensifies after the application of mascara. In my opinion, the results after a coat or two of mascara are gorgeous and actually look a lot better than a set of lash extensions. My favourite mascara to pair with the treatment is the Urban Decay “Troublemaker” mascara because it holds all day without budging, even when you’re melting in the heat in Portugal! I’ll drop a photo below to demonstrate how the treatment works with mascara, and I think you’ll be straight on the phone to book an appointment!

 

 

Overall, I would highly recommend the treatment and if you’re in the Cavan area, you should pop into the girls in Essential Skin and Laser because they’re absolute pros. I’ll keep you up to date on how long the treatment lasts for me but after two weeks, my lashes haven’t budged and I will definitely be booking in for another treatment before Christmas! 

Rouge x 

 

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“Le Drunch” at the Marker Hotel – Review.

sundays

I’m the Queen of brunch. Almost every Sunday, I will drag myself from my cosy nest of blankets and pillows and traipse across town in search of a yummy “Eggs Benedict” or my all-time favourite “Coco Pops French Toast”. The only issue I have with this is that, the odd time, I’m feeling a little fragile after a night of partying and getting up at 10 am for brunch becomes a little less appealing. However, the Marker Hotel know what’s up, and they’ve come up with a solution to my little problem. Let me present “Le Drunch”.

“Le Drunch” is a combination of dinner and brunch and it is served from 2pm on Sundays, out in the very picturesque setting of Grand Canal Square. A fortnight ago, I ventured out to sample some of the dishes, with the help of my lovely Mum, in celebration of completing my final exams. My mouth is currently watering just thinking about it…

We kicked the celebrations off with a thirst-quenching cocktail. In the Marker, they present you with the option to “build your own” Mojito. So divine… This one was my choice and was infused with strawberries. Mum had the cocktail pictured on the right. This one is the “Marker Dream” and was infused with Beefeater Gin, Chambord, elderflower, grapes and lime juice. She loved it, and may have had another one over the course of the meal but ssshhh..

In order to make complete pigs of ourselves, we decided to order three courses during “Le Drunch” and pictured above were our “Start Plates”. I had the “Chipotle Spiced Chicken Wings” while Mum tried the “Tiger Prawns”. Now, of course I sampled both.

The chicken wings were the most unusual that I’ve ever tasted. Whilst I am very dedicated to my generic “hot sauce” style wings, the Marker’s wings were a refreshing change from the ordinary. These wings were glazed to perfection and tasted spicy, while retaining some sweetness with the sprinkle a pomegranate.

Of course, Mum the star dish. Her prawns were the highlight of the entire meal. The prawns were served with garlic, shallots, chilli & French baguette. And, oh my goodness, they were amazing. The meat was tender, succulent and cooked to perfection. I would return to “Le Drunch” at the Marker, even if this dish was the only one on the menu.

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Next up was the main course. When we entered the Marker Hotel, we decided to leave the diet at the door so, we ordered from the “Comfort” section of the menu. There’s also a “Equilibrium” section that offers healthy alternatives and would be a great option for any one who considers themselves to be “fit fam” material. This time, I ordered the “John Stone’s Butcher’s Secret” dish while Mum had “The Marker Charolais Irish Beef Burger”.

The “John Stone’s Butcher’s Secret” was essentially a really tender cut of meat, served with champ, roast shallots, mushrooms and peppercorn sauce. The meat could be described as “melt in your mouth”. I’m starving just thinking about it! Also, I’m a stickler when it comes to any kind of mashed potato and in this instance, the champ was completely “lump-free” and creamy. I cleared my plate..

Mum said that her burger was really well cooked and juicy. She enjoyed the Parmesan truffle fries and, the homemade tomato relish was gorgeous. However, if we had to pick a winner in the main course department; my choice comes out on top.

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I can barely breath thinking of it, but there was no way we could have left without sampling the dessert on the “Le Drunch Menu”. If the truth was told, I would have to admit that I would have gladly eaten every dish on the menu.. Yes, I do have a sugar addiction. So, to finish, Mum had the “Baked Alaska” (pictured above) and all I can say is; why on earth isn’t this dish served everywhere? It was essentially a plate of fluffy, meringue and ice-cream goodness. I was raging that I didn’t order this dessert myself!

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I decided to try the “Banoffee” which is my absolute favourite dessert. Now, don’t get me wrong; it was absolutely delicious but, I was so full that I only managed a few bites before admitting defeat. Banoffee pie is always a very heavy dessert so, I would only recommend ordering this one if you haven’t just eaten your weight beforehand. Still worth it though!

Overall, “Le Drunch” at the Marker Hotel was one of my favourite dining experiences in Dublin, to date. The staff were lovely, the setting was stunning and the food – well, the pictures speak for themselves.

If you want to take a look at the food menu you can do so here. You can also take a sneak peak at the cocktails/drinks menu here. It is a little on the pricey side but as they say, “treat yo self” – it’s definitely worth it!

If you have anymore dining recommendations in Dublin, I would love to hear them. You can let me know here (in the comment section) or over on Instagram (username: rougewritinghood).

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

Benefit “Ka-Brow” – Review.

“There are two ways to look younger: arch your eyebrows and find older friends”. – Benefit.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know that recently; Benefit released a huge collection of new eyebrow products. Now, anyone who knows me personally will already know that I’m a really big believer in the power of good brows. And, one of my favourite products has always been Benefit’s “Gimme Brow” so as you can imagine, I was majorly excited to find out what the new collection has to offer.

 

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For me, the stand out product of the new collection (which is very impressive in its entirety) is “Ka-Brow”. “Ka-Brow” is a gorgeous, creamy gel product that can be layered to provide anything from soft and natural looking eyebrows, to bold and dramatic arches. I have fallen in love.

 

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Firstly, let’s talk about the gorgeous packaging. The silver and pink tones are sleek and sophisticated while also appearing totally fun and feminine. The product detaches into three parts to reveal a very nifty little brush that can be flipped upside down and slotted into position to become a full sized brow brush – magic!

The formula itself comes in six different shades. I’m currently using shade “3” which is perfect for auburn tones. “Ka-Brow” is completely waterproof and sweat resistant which will come in really handy when I travel to New York in early July. I have to say, I’m definitely not looking forward to the humidity – I’m too ginger for that!

I apply the formula by applying tiny amounts of the product to the brush provided and stroking lightly, following the natural shape of my eyebrows. I tend to avoid the “over done” look so as far as I’m concerned, less is more. To finish the look off, I sweep through with a spoolie or a clear eyebrow gel and ta-dah, eyebrow perfection.

 

 


 

Benefit’s “Ka-Brow” retails at €26 and you can purchase it online from Debenhams, at the Benefit Boutique on St William Street, Dublin or in selected retailers nationwide.

What do you think of the finished look? Have you tried any of the new eyebrow products from Benefit? Let us know in the comments!

Rouge x

Joico “Co + Wash Moisture” – Review.

“If I want to knock a story off the front page, I just change my hair style”. – Hilary Clinton.

At least three mornings per week, I find that the snooze button seems like a far more appealing option than washing my hair. Shampooing, conditioning and adding serum at 6 am sounds like an awful lot of effort to me – ain’t nobody got time for that!

So, it’s safe to assume that I was more than a little excited when Joico sent me a bottle of their “Co + Wash Moisture”, a one-stop product that promises to merge your hair care routine into a single step.  “Co + Wash Moisture” is a cleansing conditioner that is infused with nourishing ingredients like Jojoba oil and Shea butter. It promises to regenerate damaged, brittle hair – but does it live up to the hype?

 


I’ve been using Joico’s “Co + Wash Moisture” for over a month now and I have to say, I have fallen head over heels in love. I’ve even ditched the dry shampoo, apart from the occasional hair emergency. I use this formula by massaging it into my hair from root to tip and allowing it to settle for two minutes, before rinsing. It is super easy to dispense through the hair because the formula has a “whipped” texture – reminiscent of mousse.

Post washing, my hair feels silky soft and less dehydrated. This one would be a great option for summer because it’s nice and light. It’s also kind to sensitive scalps. The only minor issue that I would mention is that the formula doesn’t leave a “squeaky clean” finish – although hair definitely does feel refreshed. This generally isn’t an issue for anyone with really dry hair but I like to add a “pre-shampoo” step into every second wash to avoid any build up of residue.

 

Overall, this product gets a huge thumbs up from me – it’s every busy girl’s dream come true. Joico’s “Co + Wash” range also includes formulas which have been created specifically for curly and coloured hair and if you want details on those formulas; you can find them here. Joico is available in salons nationwide.

So, what do you think? Would you give this one-step formula a go or are you still having nightmares about those hideous Herbal Essences two-in-one shampoos of days gone by? Let us know in the comments!

Rouge x

theBalm “Batter Up” Eyeshadow Sticks.

Regular readers of this blog will know that recently, I have become obsessed with theBalm. The brand are quirky, cruelty-free and boy, do they know how to create high quality formulas! If you haven’t already, you need to check out my review of their holy grail lip product “Meet Matt(e) Hughes”.

Now, that’s the self-promotion out of the way so, let’s chat about their newest release “Batter Up” eyeshadow sticks. As you may have noticed, I’m not a big fan of cream eyeshadow formulas in general. I find them sticky, difficult to spread and impossible to blend. Therefore, I didn’t know what to expect when theBalm kindly sent me samples of their new formula.

  

As per usual, theBalm have amazed me and I’m an official convert to this particular cream formula. The eyeshadow sticks, which come in a range of 8 new shades, are to die for! The consistency of the formula is creamy and non-sticky, which makes it easy to blend. Also, I know that creasing is a huge problem associated with cream eyeshadows so I’m delighted to report that I’ve worn the “Batter Up” formula for 10 hours, without any creasing at all – but note that I always wear an eye primer.

  

The shades have a really strong pigment so you can apply them directly from the stick to your skin for an intense colour. Or, for a more subtle finish, you can apply with a brush. Personally, I prefer applying the formula directly from the stick and blending it with my fingers. You can also apply the formula on top of your regular powder shadows before a night out for some extra oomph.

  

“Batter Up” eyeshadow sticks are available here from Cloud10Beauty.com and are priced at €18.50 each. What do you think? Would you be willing to convert from your powder palettes?

Rouge X 

 

Kardashian Beauty – Hair Range.

“Kardashian Kraze” seems to have taken over the planet lately and, whether you love ’em or hate ’em, you cannot deny that the sisters rarely have a hair out of place. Therefore, when I heard that Kourtney’s, Khloe’s and Kim’s  haircare range was due to be released on Cloud10beauty.com, I was more than intrigued.

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Firstly, check out that sleek packaging! Each formula produced by “Kardashian Beauty” has received approval from all three sisters, who regularly feature the products on their social media accounts. The main objective was to share a few of the style icons’ red carpet haircare secrets, at an affordable price point. I was lucky enough to be gifted two products from the range: the “Black Seed Dry Oil” and the “Take 2 Dry Conditioner”.

“Take 2 Dry Conditioner” (€13.95):

Kardashian Dry Conditioner

 

Like most ‘girls on the go’, I rely on dry shampoo far more than I ought to. Unfortunately, working 9-5 everyday just makes the whole ‘wash and blow-dry’ routine too tiring to bare every single evening.

The main problem presented by the use of dry shampoo is that often, it can leave hair looking lack-lustre. Sure, we all want squeaky clean roots but nobody wants dry, unhealthy ends. Fortunately, this dry conditioner formula from Kardashian Beauty seems to provide a solution. The product can be sprayed to the ends of the hair (from just below the ears) to create an illusion of shine and vitality. I have been using this product every second day, in conjunction with a generic dry shampoo and it works wonders – even friends have noticed and commented on my seemingly glossy mane.

“Black Seed Dry Oil” (€15.95):

Kardashian Black Seed Dry Oil

Now, this stuff is like liquid cashmere. Just one tiny drop of “Black Seed Dry Oil” should be massaged through the ends of damp or dry hair to add shine and volume. Personally, I have been using the oil to counter-act the heat damage which I continue to inflict on my poor crowning glory with the curling iron and, have noticed a substantial difference over a two week period. My hair is easier to style and no longer knots and tangles after every wash. Well worth every penny!

All in all, I am really impressed with these products. Unfortunately, they have not instantly transformed me into a Kardashian sister but, the formulas are surprisingly high-quality. Furthermore, the price point is great, especially for the “Black Seed Dry Oil” which will last for months, given that you need only use a tiny amount per application.

All products are available at Cloud10beauty.com. I’m also dying to try the “K-Body Volume Foam”, which has received a thumbs-up from beauty guru Marissa Carter in the past few weeks.

What do you think? Do you buy into Kardashian-mania? Let me know in the comments!

Rouge x