Make Up

The Best 2015 Makeup Discoveries …

Part two – continued from yesterday… (sooner than expected as I couldn’t sleep again – and I was doing so well!)

So, these are the stand out new discoveries that 2015 bought me with regards to makeup and makeup tools. 2015, for me, was the year of the bold bright lip – where I finally plucked up the courage to wear bright colours. It was also the dawn of Charlotte Tilbury in my collection. The MAC collection foundation collection grew and I became a bit addicted to matte lipsticks/pencils. All in all, a great makeup year! We’ll start with a palette – where else?!

In the Balm of Your Hand palette – The thing I love the most about this palette is that it contains everything you need! Chuck in a mascara and some foundation and voila. Done. I’ve been a massive fan of The Balm Mary-Lou Manizer highlighter for years (until I smashed mine) so rather than picking up another full sized one, I saw this. It contains three blush products (along the top from the left), one bronzer, one highlighter (second from the right on the bottom – this is Mary Lou); four eye shadows in really interesting, original shades; a lip/cheek cream product (top right) and a red creamy lip product (bottom right). All are excellent quality that The Balm do so well. When I went to London before xmas, I really did just take this. If you want a one-stop palette – look no further.


MAC Studio Fix Fluid in NW10 – This was the second foundation I bought after gambling on the shade (Googling swatches to within an inch of my life!) and fortunatly, it worked. This is a medium/full coverage that I apply with a beauty blender sponge. It is perfect for my skin tone at the moment and stays pretty well once powdered. It is designed for more oily/combination skin, where I have dry/normal, but it works really nicely on me as long as I have a good moisturiser underneath (I use the Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base). And, as I posed before, MAC foundations aren’t too badly priced compared to other high end ones.

MAC Face and Body Foundation in N1 – This was an impulse purchase after watching YouTube videos by . She raves about this foundation and looks beautiful whenever she applies it in her videos. I literally spent hours and hours of my life watching her at work – she’s amazing! Anyway- this is a lightweight but build-able foundation. It has no SPF so is used a lot for fashion photography and weddings etc. as you don’t get flashback with it. The colour is perfect for my skin. It is a really runny texture but I don’t mind that and when I apply with my fingers and then a Beauty Blender it looks fabulous.

MAC Studio Sculpt SPF 15 Foundation in NW15 – As you can see this is quite a bit darker than the other two in the photo. I got this in June last year when I was coloured matched in MAC by a lovely makeup artist when I had a makeover. I was much more tanned back then and had been using the Boosting drops from Clarins to tan my face a bit, so this foundation has to be saved until the summer months. It is a nice texture and stays put but it is quite thick and heavy. If you like a full coverage, you’ll like this. I apply with a Beauty Blender to lighten the weight of it and this seems to work well. I have applied with a Real Techniques Stippling Brush too, which was also good. If you use a traditional foundation brush, this could end up feeling very heavy on the skin. But great coverage though – great for blemishes/scarring.

MAC Mineralized Skin Finish in Soft & Gentle – This is a bit of a cult product, and also seems to be a bit Marmite-like, having done some reading about it! It is a very pretty, very shimmery highlighter. To be honest, I don’t think it is quite the right shade for my skin tone – maybe a bit too shiny/peachy, but I cannot help it – I love this stuff! It is so beautiful and gives such a nice glow that I can’t not use it. It is going to last for years and years as I use such a small amount, but it definitely highlights the bits of my face I need it to.

Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish Powder in 01 – I don’t know how many times I’ve talked about this!? I love it. Pure and simple. I’ve never used another powder like it – airbrush it does.

Burberry Eyes Eye Colour Wet/Dry Silk Shadow in Rosewood – I read so so many reviews about the Burberry eye shadows that I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I’d never owned anything by Burberry before, so this was a little extravagant treat. I pitched for Rosewood instead of the raved about Pale Barley as it looked more interesting! And it is stunning. A beautiful texture and formula – buttery, soft and blend-able. Those bloggers weren’t wrong about this one! I love the colour too – a kind of mauvey/taupey shade with a teeny hint of pinky brown (makes sense right?! …). Anyway – I use it on it’s own and it is lovely. Well worth the splurge.


Maybelline Lash Sensation Lash Multiplying Mascara – Again, another favourites here. Love this mascara so so much. I’ve not really picked up another one since I’ve been using this and that is pretty telling!

NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base – Way better than Urban Decay Primer Potion. If I’m not using a Maybelline Colour Tattoo as a primer on my eyes, I’m using this. I will definitely be purchasing a full size when this runs out.


MAC Lipsticks in Syrup, Taupe and Ruby Woo – Ruby Woo was my first purchase, then the other two. There is just something about a MAC lipstick – something special. The range of colours is amazing. Syrup was a blogger inspired purchase after watching several girls raving about it (I think LilyPebbles on YouTube put this in a top MAC Lippie video that I watched). It is the most gorgeous pinky shade – like my lip colour but better. The Matte Taupe was applied by the MAC makeup artist in the Covent Garden store back in June – I was scared of brown as I thought it would make my teeth look yellow (they are permanently stained from issues in childhood and can’t be whitened due to sensitivity issues now, so I’m kinda stuck with them …) and I’d always read that pale skin shouldn’t wear brown lipsticks. I was wrong – I love brown now! And the matte? – this shade started a matte obsession! Ruby Woo was my first high end red lippie purchase in 2015 and I love it so much. I’ve worn it at every opportunity and it is stunning. Yes it is drying but who cares when it looks that amazing?! I feel like a 1940/50’s starlet when I wear it! It makes me happy! I have my eye on many many more MAC lipsticks – maybe a pink? …


Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet Lipstick in Plum Plum Girl, Pink Pong, Ole Flamingo and Frambourjoise – Ah, Bourjois – you did good! These are awesome lip products. They are on the favourites and rightly so. Amazing pigmentation, no teeth issues, amazing staying power, amazing colours and beautifully matte! What’s not to love?!


NARS Velvet Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien – This is a beautiful nude, satin pencil in a kind of rose-pink colour. It is very similar to my natural lip colour, so I wear this when I want an easy nude lip look. Not as long lasting as the matte ones, but really creamy and moisturising. I love the pencil lip products as you can get a really even, crisp application.

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils in Charmed, Dragon Girl, Bahama and Walkyrie – God I love these! The formulation, the matte-ness, the colours, the application, the staying power – everything! There is a lot of blogger love for these things. I first heard about them when I was reading – and there wasn’t a negative! I had purchased the budget dupes, the Maybelline Colour Drama Pencils (which are an amazing dupe and are brilliant in their own right) but I knew, being a lover of NARS, that I had to try these too. They don’t disappoint. The two more natural shades on the end are brown/pinky shades that I wear every day. The bright red is stunning – a bit more of a wearable day-today than MAC Ruby Woo and the Charmed shade (second from left) is a lovely berry shade, that is perfect for the wintery months. All in all, amazing purchases.

The Beauty Blender – This is it people – the famous beauty blender I’ve been banging on about for months. Mine is a bit dirty (although I had a mass brush cleaning session today, so it now looks lovely and new again), but it is well loved! This little sponge is what makes foundation and concealer apply in a whole different way now. I don’t honestly think I reach for a brush at all – it’s all about the sponge. It is such a good shape for getting under the eyes and around the nose; the spring-like texture means you can ‘bounce’your foundation on to your face which makes blending a dream – and no brush strokes anywhere. To use it, you wet it slightly (I run mine under the tap and squeeze excess water out and then squeeze in a clean tissue to just make it damp) or you can spray it with a toner/make up setting spray. Then, you apply foundation/concealer to face and sponge in! Simple. I couldn’t be without it now. I try and clean mine once a week with the Beauty Blender solid soap and it’s like new again.

Kevyn Aucoin Eyelash Curlers – Now, I’m no lash curler snob – before buying these about 6 months ago, I’d used Primark eyelash curlers for about 8 years and loved them. But I was curious, and armed with a Cult Beauty voucher, this happened! I see now what everyone was going on about: it’s not so much the curl that is different, but how much kinder the process feels to my eyelashes! The Primark ones curler fine, but they kind of squidged my lashes to death! These are a lot nicer to use and much more gentle – without losing effectiveness. Sorry Primark, I’m sticking with these.


Real Techniques Blush Brush and Face Brush – I’ve used Real Techniques brushes since they first came out, but these two I acquired in 2015 for the first time and it was love. Real Techniques is the product of Pixiwoo – Youtube/blogging make up artists who are amazing. I’ve again, spent hours and hours watching them applying makeup and they do an awesome job of it. They created these brushes to be a professional standard, available to all, for a decent price – and they did it. These brushes are cruelty free, really soft synthetic bristles and they wash very well too. The first one I ever bought was the Stippling Brush, then a few eye brush kits, then the Face brushes for foundation and then these two. The blush one is perfect for delicately dusting on blusher because it is tapered and easy to control. The Face Brush is what I apply the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Powder with and it is so so soft and perfect for dusting powder on to the skin. For the price and their availability in Boots (or Amazon) you can’t go wrong.


Zoeva Brushes –  (top to bottom) 228, 230, 231, 129, 221, 234, 105 – I have coveted MAC makeup brushes for years and years, but I just cannot bring myself to pay that amount for a brush – not when Real Techniques and Zoeva make such good alternatives. I got the brushes above in a bit set from Beauty Bay during 2015. These brushes are the ones I love the most:

  • 228 – This is the brush I use for blending eye colours – when I say I use a fluffy brush, this is it. Really soft, perfect for blending in the crease/lid/corner.
  • 230 – I use this for smudging eye shadow along the last line or in the corner. Short, dense and soft.
  • 231 – I use this for blending in the crease-  it is a bit smaller than the 228, so if I want to keep things neater then I’ll use this.
  • 129 – This is the Fan high-ligher brush. I use this to dust highlighter over my cheek bones, down the centre of the nose and the cupids bow. It enables me to get a feather-light touch of high-ligher without being too heavy handed.
  • 221 – I use this one for blending in concealer – it is fluffy and light and makes the edges blend well.
  • 234 – This is the brush I use for packing on colour on the lids – wet or dry, this can be used flat for patting (for shimmer/glitter) or swiped with matte/satin shades.
  • 105 – I use this brush for contouring – usually with the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow (mentioned yesterday in the favourites). Good for contouring with bronzer.

If you want to start getting to grips with makeup brushes, but don’t want to spend the earth and don’t want to compromise on quality – these are definitely worth a look. I washed all of mine today with regular shampoo and they are all as fluffy as they were when I got them. A really good buy.

Woah. That was a long post! See, definitely the year of the bold lip and MAC purchases!

That is all for my 2015 products – good bye 2015 – here’s to better things in 2016.

I’ve got another empties post coming soon, another disappointed products, some budget cleansers, new skincare additions and a few single reviews.

Thanks for reading



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