Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Real Techniques Brushes

Over the past year or so I've gathered up quite a collection of Real Techniques brushes. If you're not already aware, Real Techniques are a brand created by Nic and Sam Chapman. They were makeup artists gone youtube stars, filming themselves creating makeup looks.

The brushes themselves are duo-fiber and incredibly soft. As you can see, they come in three different coloured handles. The yellow brushes are for your face/base, typically foundation and concealer. The purple handles are for eyelids and eyebrows, such as eyeshadows. Lastly, the pink handles are for finishing makeup on the face, for example blushers and highlighters. Although they are supposedly specific, I have seen the Chapman sisters using the brushes for different uses on their videos. They have also brought out a Bold Metals collection, of which I am yet to buy any brushes as they are a bit more expensive.

Most of the brushes I have were bought in a set, which retail around the £21 mark. The prices for the separate brushes depend on the brushes but are usually between £6 and £10. I have found that Real Techniques products are often in 3 for 2 promotions in shops like Boots and Superdrug. You can also get them on Amazon for a little bit less.

The Core Collection

Real Techniques Brushes Review G Beauty

Buffing Brush This is the brush that I use often. Recently I've been using it with a Clarins foundation. It does what it says it does, buffs foundation in. It's very soft but quite dense, so the product gets distributed evenly and gets into those nooks and crannies. It doesn't leave brush stroke marks that sometimes foundation brushes leaves! I prefer to use this brush with non fast setting foundations.

Foundation Brush I never use this brush. It's too small for a foundation brush and too big to use as a concealer brush. Perhaps it's supposed to be used for specific areas of the face? I'm not sure. I just don't use it.

Concealer Brush This is another brush I just don't use. It's not a bad size but it just doesn't buff my concealer in. I much prefer my Zoeva concealer buffing brush.

Contour Brush I actually do like this brush but hardly ever use it. It's really good for being very precise with contouring but that's pretty much it. The brush head is a little too small for contouring the temples, as it is slightly pointed.

The Starter Set 

Real Techniques Brushes Review G Beauty

Base Shadow Brush I love this brush. I like to use it in my crease more than I do as a base shadow brush though. It's not too thick or thin and really soft. It's an all-round brush. It blends eyeshadows nicely as well, it is essentially a 3 in 1 brush. Base, crease and blending brush!

Deluxe Crease Brush I have no idea why this is named a crease brush. It is way too thick to be a crease brush. If I am to use this brush, I would use it to pop on my base. I have a lot of other brushes so I really don't bother with this one. This would actually be a really good concealer brush but I can't put myself through it. The fact that it's purple and designed for eyes, I can't bring myself to use it for a different function. OCD much?

Accent Brush This brush is great for putting that little bit of eyeshadow under the brow bone or the inner corner of your eyes. This one passed the test.

Fine Liner Brush I dislike this brush. It's not good for winged liner, angled brushes are MUCH better. The little hairs separate as well when they have product on it so even if you were to draw on a line, there is a chance that one of the little hairs will run away from the pack and do its own think on your eyelids.

Brow Brush I like this brush because it's really soft on my brows. If I've been pulling a lot, the area can get really sensitive so this brush is really nice. However, it is too thick for me to draw on eyebrows from scratch. It is not precise enough for me and I can imagine that is the case for people who have full brows as well.

The Sculpting Set 

Real Techniques Brushes Review G Beauty

Sculpting Brush I LOVE this brush! It's a really great shape and is very dense. You can pack a lot of product on with this brush and create the look you want really quickly. I really like using NARS Laguna with this brush.

Fan Brush This is definitely one of my favourite Real Techniques brushes! I love fan brushes so much. I use them for putting highlighter on the top of my cheekbones and above my brow bone. It picks up just enough product, so you don't end up looking like a ball of glitter. The shape of the fan is also perfect for highlighting as well.

Setting Brush I'm absolutely useless at remembering to set my face. This brush is good for setting the under eye concealer, but other than that I think it's a bit small. It all depends in what you're looking for in a setting brush.

Other Brushes 

Real Techniques Brushes Review G Beauty

Lipstick Brush This brush does exactly what it says it does. I don't get as much use out of it as I would like to because I can never be bothered to wash it. It is retractable as well which is a nice added touch. 

Lash-Brow Groomer The eyelash comb part of this is great. I love the metal bristles as opposed to the plastic ones. The plastic bristles always broke on me! They're very sturdy and separate my lashes nicely. However, I don't like that kind of brow brush. I much prefer a spooly brush. 

Blush Brush This is another one of my favourite brushes. It is quite big so it can be difficult to get product out of a small pan but it makes up for it in application. I can sweep this on and it never puts too much blush on, is there anything worse than getting loads on your face and trying to blend it in?! The big brush does take a bit of getting used to but I still really like it.

Miracle Complexion Sponge I like this sponge but I don't swear by it. I absolutely love the design of it, the flat side is a godsend. However, I've found it waters down my foundation a lot. I'll pop it under water, let it expand and then squeeze it but not much water comes out. Then, when I'm applying the foundation my hands get all wet from the sponge. If I hadn't had a Beauty Blender before this sponge, I probably wouldn't have noticed. The foundation does look gorgeous on the skin with this sponge though, I just find I have to put a bit more on than usual.

Real Techniques Brushes Review G Beauty

So there you have it, all of my thoughts on my Real Techniques brush collection. I hope that's been of use to you, I've tried to go in as much detail as possible.

What are your thoughts on Real Techniques brushes? Which ones do you have?

Love G xxx

Sunday, August 16, 2015

St Tropez Gradual Tan In Shower Review

As far as fake tanning goes, I am a virgin. I've always been one of those annoying people who tans deeply and the tan lasts for months on end. Now that I'm 21, I am finding it more and more difficult to have the time to sunbathe (even if the sun was out..) and I think my parents have decided that I'm too old to go on holiday with them. On top of that, I've become more conscious of sun damage.

St Tropez Gradual Tan In Shower Review

So, I decided to give fake tanning a go! I didn't want to go the down the road of fake tanning in the night, ruining your sheets and washing it off in the morning. My skin is not that pale, so it seemed like a lot of unnecessary effort to go through seeing as I'm not thaaaaat bothered about being brown. This product seems like an easy way for me to try out fake tanning, without breaking the bank and wasting a lot of time and effort!

I had seen a lot of good reviews by fellow bloggers as well, was everyone sent one but me? Sad times. I didn't want to be included anyway...

When I was buying this in Boots, I mentioned to the cashier that it was good value for money (£9.50!) and her deadpan response was 'yes, if it works'. Besides the fact that I love chit chat too much and her not being the best saleswoman, she makes a good point. Does it work? 

How to use

The instructions for the product was really straight forward. You pop it on your wet skin, massage in circular motions, wait 3 minutes and wash off. It is supposedly gradual, not activating straight after the shower. 

I have decided to test this out for 7 days, using it everyday on just my arms. I've had my first shower and so far so good. It hasn't left my orange or with dry skin. The only thing that is noticeably different is the smell of my arms, which is a nice almond scent. Edit: 2 hours later and it has started to smell of fake tan. It's not very strong but it's a little bit stronger than faint. Maybe this means it's working! 

I know a lot of people would consider waiting 3 minutes annoying but it's not too much of an imposition for me. I like to keep my conditioner in as long as possible anyway. Also, most songs are around the 3 minute mark so it's easy to keep track of the time. 

1 Week Later

I actually feel really sad for past Gweni, who was so full of hope. Look at all that text I wrote! So optimistic.. So no, this product did not work for me. I'm sorry if I got your hopes up.

Ok so these aren't the best before and after pictures I could have taken, I was in a rush on the day I took the "after" pictures. But trust me, there wasn't any difference. I ended up freezing my little botty off for 3 minutes a day and having a light fake tan fragrance for 7 days and for absolutely nothing. Sad times ey. 

The one thing I will say is that it might work better on people who have lighter skin than me. My arms were already quite brown before trying the product. Perhaps one day I will bother trying it on my legs, as they are a bit paler. But right now, I cannot be bothered for the life of me. Bronzer does the trick in much less time! 

Let me know if you've tried this, especially if it worked for you! Thank you for reading.

Love G xxx 

Friday, August 07, 2015

Brow Products for Bald Brows

This post describes all of the different types of eyebrow products that help me create eyebrows and cover up my bald patches. If you're unaware, I have a hair pulling disorder called Trichotillomania which includes me pulling out my eyebrows. If you want to have a read of my experience with this disorder then please check out my blogpost - here. I have also filmed two youtube videos on this, one on how to create eyebrows and another showing all of the different products in my eyebrows. Scroll down to the bottom if you'd like to watch them! Otherwise, here is my post describing different types of brow products and my opinions of them.

Eyebrow Products for Bald Eyebrows

Pretty and Polished, a fellow beauty blogger with trich has also written a post similar to this, feel free to check hers out here as well!

Eyebrow Powder

Eyebrow Products for Bald Eyebrows - Trichotillomania

This product is the one I use the most of but it does take a long time to draw on brows with. Out of all of the products, I think this gives the most realistic look of brows. You can put on as many layers of the powder on as you want. I've started to put pencil on and then powder on top and I find that is a good way of creating brows. I recommend patting and dabbing your angled brush onto your brows rather than using brush like strokes. Some eyebrow powder sets have a waxy product to pop on your brows first, I love these waxes! I'm not 100% sure that they make a difference but I do always feel that little bit more confident with it on.

My Eyebrow Powder Recommendations

Eyebrow Pencil

Eyebrow Products for Bald Eyebrows - Trichotillomania

Eyebrow pencils are probably the most used brow products. I used to use my Maxfactor eyebrow pencil religiously. When I say religiously, I mean because I had no eyebrows and had no idea about other brow products. I tend to stay away from pencils because my eyebrow area is often quite sensitive and brow pencils can be rough on the skin. However, they are the quickest way of drawing on brows from nothing. The look it gives is good but I find it's quite difficult to put more than one layer of it on. Like I said, I like to put on some powder afterwards. I have also found that pencil can reflect bald patches but I think a bit of brow powder tends to get rid of that shine.

My Eyebrow Pencil Recommendations

Eyebrow Tint

Eyebrow Products for Bald Eyebrows - Trichotillomania

Despite the name, this tint is not permanent. It's a liquid you pop on and basically paint your eyebrows on. This makes your eyebrows look quite drawn on but it doesn't budge when it's on. I tend to put this on before anything else, then the foundation tends to tone it down a little bit. I can draw on eyebrows really quickly and precisely with a tint and an angled brush. I don't have to keep on layering it on because it's already the colour that I want my brows to be. It's not the most natural way of creating eyebrows but it is my failsafe. If I have an all day event to go to, I feel most confident with this on and a bit of brow powder on top.

My Eyebrow Tint Recommendations

Check out Makeup Revolutions tints as well

Eyebrow Wax

Eyebrow Products for Bald Eyebrows - Trichotillomania

In my picture above, you can see I have the wax side which came in a Benefit set. I never use it as it doesn't cover up my bald patches. I have tried the Browzings set a couple of times and I don't HATE it when used in combination with a powder, but I just don't love it.  This is definitely better for people who have eyebrows. This would definitely keep your brows tamed and in place whilst giving it a tint. Serious jelly bean over here right now.

Well known Eyebrow Waxes

Eyebrow Mascaras

This is another product that I wish I could use. This would be great for people who have thin brows but want to thicken them up a bit and set them without making much of an effort. Some have fibre hairs in them that latch on to your hairs, making them appear thicker.

You can also get clear mascara gels that I do sometimes use to set what brow hairs I have. I do tend to have to put on some powder on top though if I do use it so I prefer using clear wax products that come with brow powder sets.

Well Known Eyebrow Mascaras

My Youtube Videos 

Thank you for reading and I hope that this post was of some use to you! What are your favourite brow products?

Love G xxx

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Strobing // Highlighter Favourites

The buzzword of the moment seems to be Strobing, as a bandwagon jumper I felt compelled to make a blogpost on it. I have always been a fan of highlighter so strobing hasn't really had much of an impact on my makeup routine. I thought I would share with you my favourite products for glowing, highlighted skin.

First of all, my favourite combination for dewy skin is MAC Strobe Cream, any foundation and MAC Fix + Spray. These products together are pretty much enough for me to have dewy skin. I probably would still put a bit of highlighter on top of this as well, depending on the day! This combination was used in my hangover makeup youtube video if you were interested in seeing it in action.

Most days, I don't wear strobe cream but wear highlighter pretty much every day. I will go through my favourite highlighters of the moment and why I like them. I hope the swatches do them justice.

MAC Strobe Cream

By the name you can tell that this is your go-to product for strobing. I put this on before foundation and it makes my skin look very radiant with a nice glow, but it does have a pearl white colour to it. I think you could wear this without foundation but I do recommend you put some on top. It smells amazing as well. My tip with this is to buy the smaller version of it from MAC. You can get 30ml bottle for £10 or the 50ml bottle for £24.50. I think you can only get the smaller version on the website or independent MAC stores.

MAC Fix + Spray

Fixing sprays are well known for being good all round products. I like to use this spray to add a little bit of dewyness at the end of my makeup. An added bonus is that it sets my makeup! This also smells lovely and isn't a pain in the butt to apply. It's not sticky and doesn't get in your eyes/hair etc.

MAC Mineralise Skinfinish in Soft & Gentle

This is a cult classic. There isn't much I can say about this highlighter that hasn't been said already. The golden finish is perfect for my slightly tanned skin. I love applying this with a fan brush. I have used it in some of my youtube videos - click here or here to watch!

NARS Albatross

This was a part of my NARSissist palette and even made it onto my March Favourites! What I like about this highlighter is that you get the sparkle but a lot of product. The white is almost translucent on the skin and you only get the yellow gold sparkle. It is quite subtle, so for those who want to put a lot of highlighter on but not be overloaded with glitter, then you may want to swatch this highlighter! Click here to see it in action!

Benefit Watt's Up!

This was one of the presents I got as part of my Benefit Christmas Advent Calendar. This is like a crayon formula, which is easy to put on the skin but you do have to rub it in and make sure its blended properly. It is a beautiful golden champagne colour that I think would suit most skin tones. I don't get enough use out of this highlighter because I prefer a powder.

Benefit High Brow Glow

This product is specifically designed for under the eyebrow but you could use it elsewhere if you wanted to. You can use eyeshadow under the eyebrow bone (and I often do) but I do really love using this pencil. It's easy to use and I think it helps with the shape of your eyebrows. The colour is gorgeous, again a golden champagne colour! It also comes in the original High Brow which is more of a white pink colour. I much prefer warmer colours on my skin tone though so I went for the Glow.

Makeup Revolution Vivid Baked Highlighter in Peach Lights

This is dirt cheap in comparison to the other products on this list at £3. This is a lovely white pink highlighter, with an awesome pigmentation. I think this suits paler skins but it still looks nice on me. It's really easy to use and cheap. So cheap. Makeup Revolution is well known for doing fab highlighters for a really good price, so do have a look at their website!

Thank you for reading and I hope this has been helpful for you! 

What are your favourite highlighters or products for strobing. 

Love G xxx 

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