Sunday, 25 January 2015

November Birchbox

I thought long and hard about posting this as it's a very old Birchbox now, and I will warn you some of the reviews are not very reliable, but I felt very strongly about a few of these products so I thought I should post it anyway!

Dr Jart V7 Cleansing Foam

This foaming cleanser smells really orange-y and zesty. It's brightening, antioxidant cream foams once it's rubbed between wet hands. It feels really lovely on the skin until it comes to washing it off. It leaves your skin feeling squeaky clean, and I am talking literally. You know when your skin feels stripped of all oil and theres that dry squeakiness afterwards? That's how it makes my skin feel, and it becomes difficult to remove all of the foam due to it. It doesn't actually leave me skin feeling tight afterwards, but I prefer creamier cleanser I have used in the past for my drier skin. I personally wouldn't use this again, and even though it was a full sized product, I have only used it a couple of times.

English Laundry Perfume

So my first unreliable review is this one. If I'm honest, I lost this sample of perfume so I have no idea what it smells like. I'm never good at reviewing perfumes anyway though so your probably not missing out on a review here!

Beauty Protector Leave In Conditioner

I genuinely swore out loud the other day when this ran out. This has transformed the condition of my hair and really changed my view on leave in conditioners. I assumed leave in conditioners would leave my hair feeling greasy and weigh it down. As my hair is thick anyway, I hate the idea of adding any weight to it at all. The nice thing about this 'Beauty Protector' leave in conditioner is that it is a spray in so you can control the amount of product going in. I only spray it in the ends and comb it through and it makes it so much more manageable and less tangled. It smelt really nice and sweet and I really loved this product. I am definitely going to explore the usage of leave in conditioners from now on.

Lord & Berry Bronzer

My next rubbish review is this one. This bronzer was not my colour at all so I haven't used it so I can't really review it for you I'm afraid! I like the brand though from other stuff I've tried from it so I would explore the makeup further!

O.P.I Nail Colour

I love receiving a full size nail polish in a Birchbox, especially one from O.P.I. This Colour is called 'A Grape Affair' and is a deep purple colour. I have to admit that the colour looks slightly better in the bottle, and more purple. On the nail it looks basically black, and you can only see the purple tone on closer inspection. Saying that, I have had a lot of compliments on this nail colour, and think it is a nice one for the more wintery months. 

Apologies for this half arsed attempt, but hopefully you enjoyed the products I did try!

Monday, 19 January 2015

Jessica Phenomen oil

I'm breaking the silence! I'm so sorry I've been so quiet after Christmas, I don't know what happened really! I have no excuses! But here we are! The first post of 2015! After the nail art challenge I did throughout December, changing polishes every 2-3 days, it is safe to say that my nail were in pretty poor condition afterwards. Having that much remover and paint on it can really dry then out, so today's post will be on my nail detoxification! Perfect for a New Year detox post (even of it is slightly overdue)

The Jessica phenomen oil (good play on words) is a best seller at work, and I've always wondered why people buy it so quickly, surely it's just an oil?? I use oil regularly on my nails, and see a small difference but nothing that makes me frantically run to the shops and demand for which some of the phenomen oil customers do. I fancied a change, so decided to try a smaller version if the oil which was in a leftover Christmas set for £9.00.

I'm not sure what's in the oil, but there is undoubtably some almond oil in there from the recognisable smell, and the little poppet applicator makes it easy to apy with little mess. I have to admit, that this has really made a difference to my nails! They are much healthier and peeling less which is my most common nail problem. I don't know if almond oil is a better type of oil for nails, but it certainly seems to have worked wonder on mine. I also really like the smell of almond as I'm a real lover of marzipan, so I look forward to applying it on my nails just before I go to bed at night, as I really look forward to it! 

Rubbing oil into your nails helps to keep them hydrated and flexible so they don't snap. It helps to soften the cuticles, and the motion if rubbing it in stimulates nail growth. It's a really good habit to get into, and if you use a hand cream afterwards, you'll have soft supple hands!

Yin and Yang Nails

Hi everyone! Today is the first manicure of 2015, and I have been inspired by a T shirt I got from Topshop before New Years. The Yin and Yang symbols are globally known, and represent the light and shade, and when together are a balance. I just bought the T shirt cos I liked it.

I took a screen shot these nails by 'celinedoesnails' absolutely ages ago because I liked them, and this reminded me that I had wanted to try them.

I decided to do a gradient as my base, so chose these colours, as I wanted purple-y tones. I chose 'Bright Purple' by Barry M, and 'Skinny Jeans' by Ciate, and sponged the two colours together on top of a white base coat to intensify the colours.

I then used nail art pens to draw on the Yin an Yang symbols. I started with a white circle as it is easier to get a stronger colour on white, and then added the black side on top, and finally the opposing dots.

Hope you enjoy, and keep your eyes out for new posts this week!

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Day 31: New Year: The Past, The Future, and a Big Reveal (it's going to be a long one)

Today marks the end of the nail art challenge which I have hugely enjoyed doing as per usual! Before we get onto the nail art though, I think as we are heading into a New Year, a little bit of reflection is in order, plus once you've read it, my nail art will make more sense...

New Year is always a great time to look to the future and make changes, whether it's to get fit (need to do), cut down on something (nail varnish: still need to do) or to just generally make peace with yourself. It is also a great time to look back on the past year, and things you have accomplished.

I started this blog exactly 2 years ago today as a New Year Resolution. In my first ever post, I explained how I wanted to blog as a hobby, and to keep me in the habit of writing. If I'm honest, beauty was something that never interested me, but my job as a sales assistant in a natural skincare department meant I was being given lots of nice things to try, and being trained on brands which was really informative. I put two and two together, and decided to start a beauty blog, so I could share all of these useful things with others!

Very quickly, I could see how people spend lots of money on beauty, as I was finally jumping on the beauty band wagon my friends had got on long ago. Suddenly I knew what a serum was, and what the benefits of regular exfoliation can do, and I was instantly hooked. I even remember a friend of mine and I writing a A4 sheet list of things we needed to make ourselves 'Goddesses'. It goes without saying that there is so much more to life than beauty and looks, which I am a firm believer of, and I certainly don't want to come across as shallow or vain, but it is something everyone can relate too, as it makes us all feel good when we feel we look good, and that is simply, what I love about it.

I still have so much to learn about the beauty industry, and am by no means an expert which I hope I don't come across as trying to be with my blog. If anything, I just wanted to show people all these cool things that were available that I didn't know about before, and to tell you guys if they were worth buying or not!

 My blog has however opened my eyes to the idea of a career in beauty, especially writing about it, as my blog is something I really enjoy doing. I mean, it's something I do after a full day at work with absolutely no profit, yet I still soldier on to try and make sure I make regular posts to please, realistically about 5 people. That is commitment for you! I do find it really rewarding though, and having a little extra curricular hobby is nice for me as I'm not one of these people who can relax and watch TV all evening, I'm a bit too hyper for that.

By no means has my blog become a overnight raving success such as Zoella, who now has her own book and beauty brand, but I am still shocked at how well my blog has done, and how I still manage to get views on the posts I do. Looking back on old posts, I can see how much I've grown, even if its just down to better photography or 'beauty terminology'.

Some highlights for me have been reaching a staggering 4000+ views on my Bleach London post I did. I have no idea why it has been so popular, but I still gets regular views everyday despite being written a while ago now. My blog gave me the confidence to put myself forward for a magazine article which was then published online which was a bit cool. I've also really embraced the social media side to blogging, and have regular chats with absolute strangers about things such as what is the best remedy for an annoying spot.

On a more personal level, for me, 2014 has been one of the fastest years of my life. I have done so much I can't even begin to explain how much fun I've had. Something I'm particularly proud of, is that I've seen so many of my favourite music acts at stand alone gigs or at Glastonbury Festival. I also swam with sharks, and went on a summer and skiing holiday. I have had one of the most exciting years of my life, for one that I thought was going to be boring. I guess it comes to the awkward/ exciting part of my post now. The reason I thought my year would be boring is because I've been saving up all my money, as I reveal that I am going travelling this year.

As most of you who read thing blog are my friends or family, you will know that travelling is something I have planned on doing as soon as I left university. I am finally pleased to say that on March 6th 2015, I will be flying to Rio, Brazil, where I will start my indefinite journey around the world. I can now do a picture of my nail art for the New Year, as in 9 weeks from now, I will be embarking on my terrifying, yet unbelievably exciting trip around the world.

I can't strictly call these nail art, as I have literally cut out some maps from an atlas which I butchered, and then shaped them into little decals for my nail, but if you go from the little finger to the thumb, that is the order of the places I'm going, so there is a little insight into some of the places I shall be visiting on my trip! 'Why am I telling you this over my blog though?' I hear you cry!
 Well a few people have said that they want me to document my travels whilst I'm away, providing I can get to a computer and wifi access. But I wanted to know if you would mind if I did it on here, after all we've all got to know each other on here for the last 2 years. I think it will add a new dimension to my blog, and a more personal level if you will. The people who read this blog though are people who want to read about beauty though, not what I will smell like after a 6 week trek around South America. I'll try and find a way of making it a separate column or something, but I guess the point I'm trying to make is, if you want to follow me still on my journey, even though it goes against the whole meaning of my blog, then welcome, to What A Looker On Tour! Obviously whilst I'm away I'm going to be spying foreign beauty products to try so I will regularly update on those, but it is going to be a new journey for me and my little blog, so I can't always promise regular posts, as I want to enjoy my trip as much as I bloody can!

If you have read this far thank you for sticking with me, I really apologise for the essay, and I guess I don't really know what the point of this post is. I guess I just wanted to share with you what I've been doing for the last year, what I've been proud of, and my plans for the future. Sometimes it's nice to break down the fourth wall and see that I have a life beyond what you see me post on here :)  Please comment and let me know if you would like to follow me on my journey.

Thanks for reading guys, and thank you for sticking with me throughout the December nail art challenge. 

January will be back to lots of product reviews I promise! I wish you all the most amazing, successful and prosperous New Year's, and hope you too can accomplish some of your wishes.

Steph xxx

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Day 28: Sweater

Hello everyone, welcome back! Hope you are all over your food comas from Christmas, and haven't been too spoiled! Today's prompt is 'Sweater', and as we all know, the tacky, typical lary jumper is a fashion statement these days. The more old fashioned, badly-knitted-by-your-Nan, and homemade looking, the better.

I saw this jumper from Warehouse at work, and although I do not own it, I quite liked the colour scheme of it, so I went ahead and did my nails based on this!

I actually did these a while ago and these were the first designs I tried with my new Barry M Nail art pens, so I wasn't quite used to them. I'd have preferred the detail of the reindeers to come out neater, but I can always try again in the future!

 Enjoy the last few days of rest before New Year!
I'll be seeing you then!

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Day 25: Festive

I hope you are having a lovely Christmas day, and if your reading this, thank you for taking time out of your holiday to read this post! So today's nail art prompt is festive, and I thought what is more festive than opening your Christmas presents, surrounded by family under your Christmas Tree?
My friend showed me some nails with textured little trees, and I knew I could replicate the nails so here they are!

These nails are pretty bloody camp and tacky, but it's Christmas! Christmas IS tacky! 
I used my Ciate Emerald Collection Kit for the textured tree. This kit has been one of the best things I have ever bought for nail art. It is so versatile and creates so many different looks. I then stuck on rhinestones and used my Alexa Chung stars polish for the stars at the top.

So there you have it! I hope you have a safe, fun, restful and exciting Christmas, and I will be back in a few days with my latest nail art prompt.

Merry Christmas
Steph xxx

Day 22: Match Socks

Sorry I'm late posting again! This prompt is the 'Match Your Socks' prompt, and as this is a December challenge, I found the most Christmas-iest pair I own which are these Christmas Pudding socks my sister got me last year.

I used 'Espresso' by Mavala as my base, and then nail art pens for the white icing and holly leaves. I used dotting tools for the berries on top and the little textured bits in the pudding! 

I love these little festive puddings!