Friday, 26 October 2012

Product Rave: Tangle Teezer

Hello, my name is sceptical Sarah. Or at least it was. You see, I thought these Tangle Teezers were a bit of a con. "You can't beat a good old hair brush" was what I used to say. Yes, that's right ladies - past tense! I had a hair appointment yesterday at a new salon. I was surprised when after my quite frankly brilliant hair wash, the stylist picked up a Tangle Teezer to tame my locks. 'Brilliant' I thought - a chance to see it in action!

After washing my hair, I find it to be a little bit unmanageable because of the length. The thing that's so great about Tangle Teezers is that the're designed to detangle wet or dry hair without causing discomfort and without breaking your hair, unlike a normal brush would. I was beyond surprised when the Tangle Teezer glided through my hair pain-free without pulling.

Luckily, the salon sell them and I picked up this super cute Compact Styler in leopard print for £12. This is slightly different to the normal Tangle Teezer as this is a bit smaller than the regular version. It fits perfectly in the palm of your hand, and has a cover for the bristles which is great for carrying around in your bag for those windy days when you need to style your hair on the go. 

♥ ♥ ♥

Tangle Teezers start from £10.99 in Boots

Have you tried a Tangle Teezer? I'm actually looking forward to washing my hair again to use mine!

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P.S. Just a quick note to say you can follow my blog with Bloglovin and Hellocotton :)

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Payday Purchases

I do love a little payday splurge and I can hand on heart say everything I bought in Boots at the weekend was down to your blog posts ladies! You're such enablers *shocked face* Thank heavens it was 3 for 2 ;)

Starting with face products, I fancied picking up a new foundation and I was intrigued by the Maybelline FIT Me Foundation. I was so pleased when I got to the stand and they've sectioned it into skin colours and skin tones with advice as to which foundation, concealer and powder to buy. That's pretty much a first for the typical drug store brands. First impressions are good and I'll try to get a review up shortly.

On to eyes, and I picked up Collection's Big Fake Ultimate mascara as the original wasn't anywhere to be seen. The brush is HUGE. It does give nice lashes though. After seeing Sam Chapman tweet that Clinique's Bottom Lash Mascara doesn't smudge, I had to pick some up as smudged bottom lashes are my absolute bugbear. I can confirm that this mascara is amazing! 

Moving on to nails and having fallen head over heels with Barry M's Gelly polish in Blackcurrant, I decided to pick up Blood Orange which is a lovely deep red. Unfortunately I'm not loving it but I think this is because I've decided red does not suit me. After seeing Liloo's post about the 17 Holographic polish I was won over by how pretty it is. I caved and bought a bottle!

Finally on to lip products, I picked up the Lanolips Lemonaid Lip Aid. Apparently it smells as good as the Burt Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Creme. Heavenly! I also picked up a Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Lip Balm in Honey as I'd seen so many bloggers rave about it but I really don't think its my cup of tea. I have to say I prefer the Clinique Chubby Sticks. Which I totally eyed up but didn't purchase. I've found my willpower to resist!!

No shopping trip is complete without a wander into Primark. I went in to look at the new A/W12 range but nothing seems to have changed in my local store so I headed towards the accessories. I'm loving leather and studs at the moment and I picked up a new purse and some new gloves.

I rarely ever leave Primark without some new jewellery and this occasion was no exception. I picked up this bracelet which I am loving and this beautiful ring.

♥ ♥ ♥

Have you picked up on any these items lately? Got any recommendations on things to try?

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Monday, 22 October 2012

FOTD: Two Ton Tomato

I can't believe I haven't posted a face of the day since July. Well you're in for a treat today as you get to see my mug. It's been a while... *drum roll*

I really can't believe how long my hair has gotten! I think it kind of looks longer now that I've jumped on the ombré bandwagon. I've been favouring simple make up lately and my go to look has involved base make up, liner, mascara and a statement lip. My skin has been pretty good lately *touch wood* and so I'm trying to use up my lighter foundations before I really need a better coverage for winter. Its on the way folks. I swear I heard someone mention snow earlier. Anyway, I digress! What's on my face?

Products Used

Kryolan Ultra Fluid Foundation in Alabaster
Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in 1 and 2
MAC Studio Finish Concealer in NC15
Illamasqua Eyebrow Cake in Gaze
Illamasqua Powder Blush in Naked Rose
Urban Decay Primer Potion
MAC Brulé
Urban Decay Blackout from Naked Palette 2 (top and bottom lash line)
Illamasqua Medium Pencil in Vow (waterline)
GOSH Catchy Eyes Mascara
Clinique Chubby Stick in Two Ton Tomato (love, love, love!)

♥ ♥ ♥

I'm not usually a red lip person. I sort of admire them from afar and lust after them for a while and then forget about them and go back to my trusty lip colours of choice. But I must have swatched this about 5 times before taking the plunge. I'm so glad I did, I love it! It's not an obvious in your face red, it's very wearable in my humble opinion. It's moisturising, its long lasting, and that's my cup of tea really.

If anyone's wondering, the super cosy chunky knit cardi I'm wearing is from Primarni dahling. 

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Friday, 19 October 2012

Review: Louise Young Brushes

Hello. My name is Kim and I have an excessive amount of make up brushes. I have three overflowing brush holders on my dresser and two brush rolls. Not mentioning the brushes that won't fit in said brush holders. All in the name of beauty!

Having seen the gorgeous ladies from Pixiwoo mention Louise Young brushes, I picked up a couple at IMATS earlier this year. I hadn't heard of Louise Young beforehand so I'll give you a little bit of background. Louise has been a make-up artist for over 20 years, making up some of the world's most famous faces as well as working in film, fashion, television and theatre. Her work doesn't stop there as she also lectures in media make-up, has written her own courses on the subject and contributes to TV and radio as well as working on many popular UK films and TV series.

I love the brushes that I bought at IMATS, so I was thrilled to be able to try a few more.

Top to bottom: Foundation Taklon LY02*, Super Foundation Brush LY34*, Domed Shadow Brush LY39*, Tapered Shadow Brush LY38*, Ultrafine Liner Brush LY24B*.

I really cannot recommend these brushes enough. They're of such high quality craftmanship, all handmade and assembled in the UK using Forest Stewardship Commission protected kiln dried birch or beech.

Foundation Brushes

L-R: LY34 and LY02

The LY34 Super Foundation brush is described as being a large, luxurious brush with a number of potential uses. It applies foundation perfectly and is also great for block powder and blusher.

I have been using the LY34 for powdering my T-Zone, a job it does superbly well. The bristles are synthetic and incredibly soft. I've experienced no shedding and it washes well with no loss of fibres or colours.

The LY02 Foundation Taklon brush is described as being a luxury foundation brush which makes foundation application quick and easy.

I've never been a fan of flat foundation brushes, they don't really work for me. That being said, I decided to give this brush the benefit of the doubt. Whilst it's a very nice brush, synthetic and soft, I found it to be a little too firm for my liking and it seemed to absorb a lot of product. Again, I found the LY02 doesn't shed and washes well.

Eye Brushes

L-R: LY24B, LY38, LY39

The LY24B Ultrafine Liner Brush is a natural fibre brush that claims to create the very finest eye lines. Perfect for detail work and lining very close to the roots of the lashes.

I find this brush to be an absolute must have in any collection. It's so incredibly small and precise and I find it really helps to get colour right into the lashes to create a defined lash line. It's also perfect for lining towards the inner corner of your eye and defining your lower lash line. Despite the lashings of eyeliner this brush has endured, it washes incredibly well and again, no shedding experienced.

The LY38 Tapered Shadow Brush soft brush enables perfect application of shadow to the crease of the eye.

I thought I'd found my perfect crease brush in the shape of a trusty, much loved pencil crease brush from GOSH however I truly think the LY38 might just have stolen the limelight. It's natural fibres are so, so soft which makes blending colour an absolute delight as it doesn't feel uncomfortable at all. I also find this brush good for depositing glitter pigments lightly over shadow on the eyelid. It seems to pick it up remarkably well. I've experienced no shedding with this brush, and it washes well with no bleeding of colour.

The LY39 Domed Shadow Brush is described as a super soft eyeshadow brush - perfect for applying and blending shadows.

I couldn't agree more! Because it's so soft and gentle its great for not only applying colour but also for blending colour out and also for running colour under the lower lashes. It's incredibly versatile and I've used this with powder eye shadows, cream eye shadows and cream gel eye colour. Once again I've experienced no shedding and no colour bleeding during washing.

Brush Care

To care for my Louise Young brushes I use brush guards on the foundation brushes to help keep their shape. To cleanse I use lukewarm water and Johnson's Baby Shampoo before rinsing, reshaping and laying flat on a towel to dry.

♥ ♥ ♥

The Louise Young brushes mentioned in this post start from £9.00 and are available on the Louise Young website.

Do you own any Louise Young brushes? Do you have any recommendations?

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Wednesday, 17 October 2012

September Glossybox: Maggie Li

I know I'm late to the party with this post. I've been super busy lately and ill which hasn't helped. Remember the promise from Glossybox to bring us a great September box? This is it. They've teamed up with London based freelance illustrator Maggie Li for yet another special edition box*.

I'm not going to lie, I don't like the packaging, its not my cup of tea at all. On to the products and unfortunately, I couldn't be more disappointed to be honest. Especially when I saw so many other bloggers get the full sized L'Oreal Mythic Oil. I don't think its fair that some people get a box with a full sized product whilst the rest of us just get samples. Even if we were to receive a different full sized product. Anyway, on to the products.

Rodial Skincare

I received two 5 minute facial sachets and two Glamoxy Snake Serum sachets. I've heard so many people rave about Rodial, and I've not tried the brand before so it was nice to receive two sample sized items. The 5 minute facial is a clay mask, which is really nice to use, but I am at a bit of a loss as to why I received the Glamoxy sachets aimed at targeting wrinkles. I'll be passing those on to Mama K.

Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream

Again, this is another brand I've seen around but have never used. I've got my trusty sk:n eye cream that I love and I don't think I can be persuaded to change my allegiance to another brand, but I have tried this and its nice - sinks in to the skin well, its not greasy or sticky, although I didn't like the scent, so I wouldn't buy the full size.

Biosilk Silk Therapy

I used to be a bit sceptical about leave-in hair treatments but since I'd had great results with my beloved VO5 Miracle Elixir, I wasn't hesitant to try the Biosilk sample. The Biosilk sample is a serum rather than an oil, and I've used many serum products before, which is a good thing as the box was all in French. There were some instructions in English on the bottle but I found more information through Googling other reviews! Serums are great if you use a little on the mid-lengths to the ends of your hair. I used this on towel dried hair before drying and I have to say it cut down my drying time quite a bit and it left my hair feeling silky soft and smooth with virtually no flyaways. The serum has a slight floral scent that is noticeable after drying but I really like it so this isn't an issue for me. This is the only product in the box that I'd be tempted to purchase. I found it hard to track down a UK stockist but its retailing for £12.05 for 50ml on Look Fantastic (albeit sold out).

The Body Shop Vitamin E Moisture Cream

The Vitamin E Moisture Cream is a product I've used before and really like because it's soothing and hydrating and smells lovely. I'll be keeping this little pot to hand in my make up bag.

Lady Gaga Fame EDP

I bought Lady Gaga's debut fragrance several weeks ago and I absolutely love it, so whilst I didn't need a sample, it's great for those who are yet to try it, and I like having these samples to pop in my bag so I can use it to top up throughout the day/night if needed.

♥ ♥ ♥

Glossybox is a monthly subscription service and you can find out more here

Did you receive the September box? What did you think? Personally, I've become disillusioned and bored with the beauty box thing, and this will be the last Glossybox post you'll see on Kimtopia.

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Monday, 15 October 2012

Review: L'Oreal Preference Wild Ombrés Kit

Oo hello there! Just a quick note to say welcome to Kimtopia (formerly - we've had a blog makeover! New name and web address, new design, and new features. I hope you like it :)


Recently I've been in a hairstyle rut. Unsure what to do with it. Keep it long or cut it short? Fringe or no fringe? Highlights or dye?

Well ladies, I finally took the plunge and went for a compromise. I've jumped on the ombré band wagon! I was recently given the opportunity to try the new L'Oreal Preference Wild Ombré Dip Dye Hair Kit*. I chose the Light Brown to Dark Brown Kit as my natural hair sits somewhere in the middle of that colour range.

The kit comes with Developer Creme, Lightening Creme, Lightening Powder, a brush, gloves and a Conditioning Shampoo and of course a full instructions guide.

Once you've made the dye up, you just brush it through your hair and leave it on for 25-45 minutes before rinsing and shampooing. I'd advise you do this in a well ventilated space, as it does have a strong chemical smell. The guide doesn't advise you to condition, but as you're bleaching your hair, I thought this was a pretty important step to try and minimise any damage. I treated my locks to a liberal dose of my trusty Kérastase Chromasensitive Conditioner before drying and styling. I also used my beloved VO5 Miracle Elixir on the ends as they still felt a little dry.

My natural hair

After using the Wild Ombré Kit


My hair didn't go as light as I expected - I left the dye on for the full 45 minutes - but I am really pleased with the results. I've had so many compliments on my hair and everyone has said how natural the finished result is.

I haven't used a women's L'Oreal hair colour in such a long time, but I will definitely be using them in the future.

♥ ♥ ♥

The L'Oreal Preference Wild Ombré Kits are priced at £6.99 and can be found in all good hair colour retailers.

What do you think? Are you still loving the ombre trend or are you over it? Have you tried these kits?

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Friday, 12 October 2012

Illamasqua Generation Q - The Haul

There's nothing more I look forward to than the Autumn/Winter season. The promise of colder weather, wrapping up in chunky knits, walking on crunchy leaves, and the sumptuously rich colours adorning cosmetic counters everywhere. And of course the time of year brings with it a new collection from what is fast becoming one of my favourite brands. Illamasqua's Generation Q ticks all the boxes for me with just the right amount of shimmer, sparkle and rich dark shades.

Empower Palette

L-R: Clockwise from top left - Blink (matte), Synth (shimmer), Slick (liquid metal) and Fervent (shimmer); Swatches in the same order

I have to say I didn't order this originally and kicked myself when I saw it in store. It's absolutely lovely. There are three powder shadows and one liquid metal. Blink is a great neutral beige-brown. Synth is like nothing I've ever seen before - a beautiful iridescent pink - and layers incredibly well, especially over Slick which is a gorgeous shimmery pewter shade. Fervent is an absolutely stunning colour. In the pan it reminds me of MAC Club but this is a lot more red-toned. It looks fab paired with Focus liquid metal from the Complement Palette.

Gleam Aurora

I saw the beauty of Gleam Aurora back in the summer when I visited the Beak Street store with Leanne for a masterclass on mature beauty. I knew I had to have it and it was the first thing on my list to order when the collection launched. It can be used over or under foundation to highlight or to give a natural glow. Absolutely stunning and its perfect for brightening up your complexion over the coming winter months.

Magnetism Lipstick & Wisdom Precision Ink

L-R: Magnetism Lipstick, Wisdom Precision Ink, Swatches: Magnetism, Wisdom, Gleam, Gleam blended

For some crazy reason, I'd also overlooked Magnetism lipstick until I saw it on the gorgeous Milly. I've tried this straight from the bullet and muted down using a lip brush and both give such a lovely effect. This will definitely be my go-to lippie this season.

The new Precision Ink in Wisdom was a no-brainer for me. I've tried three Precision Inks prior to this one and they're all amazing. Colour pay-off is excellent and the longevity is unrivalled. I became impatient for the release date as soon as I saw Leanne's post with the press sample. I've used this pretty much every day since I got it. Wisdom is so, so beautiful. You need this in your life.

Complement Palette

L-R: Slink (shimmer), Focus (liquid metal), Queen of the Night (shimmer), Forgiveness (matte); Swatches - Slink, Focus, Forgiveness, Queen of the Night

Complement is my favourite of the two palettes from Generation Q. Again, there are three powder shadows and one liquid metal. Slink is a beautiful champagne shimmer that looks beautiful as a highlight or all over the lid. Focus liquid metal is stunning alone or you can layer other colours over it. Queen of the Night is lovely for an intense purple smoky eye or great as a liner. Forgiveness is like MAC Cranberry minus the shimmer and I like it layered over Focus.

♥ ♥ ♥

Generation Q is online, in store and on Illamasqua counters now.

If you fancy ordering now there's currently free delivery on all orders, UK and international, with no minimum spend or code to enter. You best be quick, the offer ends 9am Monday 15th October!

What do you think of Generation Q? Have you bought anything?

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Wednesday, 10 October 2012

NOTD: MUA Nail Constellation in Leo

Apologies for being quiet lately, I came down with what I like to term girl flu. Lame right? Just as I had a week off from work. Typical. However, I'm pretty much back to my old self thanks to some trusty cold and flu remedies. Night Nurse, I shall forever be in your debt. Although if you could make a Calpol flavoured version that would be awesome.

Products Used

Illamasqua Base Coat
MUA Frozen Yoghurt
MUA Nail Constellation in Leo
Illamasqua Top Coat

♥ ♥ ♥

I'll admit, when the caviar mani craze started, I wasn't a fan. But it soon grew on me. I fancied giving it a go but didn't want to shell out the best part of £20 on a Ciate kit. Then high street favourite MUA jumped on the trend and brought us a much purse friendlier version. 

MUA's Nail Constellations come in 5 different styles and are priced at just £3 at selected Superdrug stores and online on the MUA website.

What do you think? Are you a fan of the caviar mani?

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Wednesday, 3 October 2012

These are a few of my favourite things

♥ Illamasqua Illuminator in Poised
I bought this ages ago when I first visited the flag shop store in London. It was love at first sight. Recently I've been inspired by the glowing skin in the Generation Q collection and as I was impatiently waiting for my Generation Q order, I have been using Poised under my foundation on my cheekbones. It gives such a lovely, natural looking 'glow from within'.

♥ Illamasqua Blush Naked Rose
I picked up Naked Rose when the Naked Strangers collection came out and I think it has become my favourite pink blush of all time. Pretty strong words I know, but this goes with every look. It gives a natural pink glow, especially when you want to achieve those rosy pink cheeks in the cold weather.

♥ Fantasy by Nina Ricci Eau de Toilette
I bought this back in July when I was casually browsing Debenhams in Manchester and walked out with my bank account being £100 lighter. Whoops ;) I've worn this pretty much every day since and I still can't get enough of it. A lovely summery fruity scent which is perfect for day time.

♥ Lancome Doll Eyes Mascara
I bought this sample sized mascara in a blog sale a while back as I'd always wanted to see if Lancome mascaras lived up to the hype. I can safely say Doll Eyes does. I get lovely defined, lengthened, fanned out lashes that hold a curl without smudging. It's not a volumizing mascara but I'd take length over volume any day. This will be a definite one to purchase in the future! Also, it smells lovely.

♥ Kryolan Ultra Fluid Foundation
For good skin days and days when I wanted a foundation to pop on without spending ages blending, I've been reaching for my trusty Ultra Fluid. Its been sat on my desk for months without being used as I was a tad darker during the summer and this is super light but I'd forgotten how much I love it. Bright, even skin tone in a flash. What more could you wish for?


These products I've only had for about 10 days but its instant love and I had to show you as I've been reaching for them without fail every day!

♥ Illamasqua Precision Ink in Wisdom
Brand new to Generation Q is this gorgeous antique gold liner - think dark almost brown liner with an incredible gold sparkle with gold and red micro glitter. Its insanely beautiful.

♥ Chanel Illusion D'Ombre in Epatant
This is just the most incredibly stunning eye shadow I think I've ever used. It brings a gorgeous luminous sheen to the eyes and once its on, it stays put until you remove it. No creasing, no smudging.

♥ Illamasqua Palettes in Complement (Right) & Empower (Left)
I've been using these pretty much every day and the combinations are endless thanks to the combination of colours and finishes. Spy their beauty, go and purchase. All I need to say really.

♥ ♥ ♥

Are any of your favourites here? Anything you like the look of? Which items have you been loving lately? I'll be posting my Generation Q post soon complete with swatches :)

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Monday, 1 October 2012

Things I learnt in September 2012

001. I love to explore new places

002. I am indecisive

003. Pensions are confusing. Until you read the dummified explanation.

004. Feeling left out is not nice.

005. There are some right funny beans in society!

006. Babies are super cute and make me broody!!

007. I am forgetful. I don't like this.

008. I am feeling inspired by make up and bloggers again


009. A walk along the beach is great for clearing your head

010. I dislike manic Mondays.

011. I find people so frustrating sometimes.

012. Manners cost nothing. I wish people would use them more!

013. I'm a little gem apparently.

014. I really do dislike people not doing what they're told.

015. Long chats with the bestie are the best :)


016. Cupcakes = happy workforce

017. Just letting go of the day's stresses makes me feel so much better.

018. It turns out nut allergies are very odd. You can be allergic to some nuts but not all.

019. I love it when a plan comes together

020. Alesha Dixon is TALL!

021. There are not enough hours in the day sometimes...

022. London you are a cruel mistress.

023. Nickelback never get old.


024. I hate manic Mondays

025. I love revisiting childhood haunts

026. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind

027. I am tired of being the go-to girl

028. It is so nice to feel appreciated.

029. I feel like we're very quickly rushing towards the festive season! And I kinda like it.

030. YouTube inspires me and puts me in the mood to blog. I like this.

♥ ♥ ♥

How has September been for you?

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