Wednesday, 25 February 2015

New York & London Fashion Week Nails. Bex's Instagram favourites.


I don't know about you but for the past two weeks my Instagram has been chocked full off the New York & London Fashion Weeks and I've been so inspired by some on the nail artistry happening. 

Here I have collated some of my favourite artists/salons and looks from the two weeks and shall spend the next few months basque group in the trends ready for Autumn and Winter. 



No contrasts here. It's all about black on black and white on white. Although you might find it difficult to find a foundation to match. For now. 


Sophy Robson is one of the ultimate nail artists. It is one of my dreams to visit her London salon. One day!




Negative space and Minimalist nails are not going anywhere by the looks of things. I love that these perfect straight lines were all my hand. Deceptively difficult but so effective!



Sharmadean Reid and her extensive team of WAH nails girls are usually one of the first salons to create, pick up, or bring back trends. Here we can see they're rocking the 90s Nail Piercings. Time to hoke out my old piercing tool then! 




Essie proving that gold is never old if you can mix it up with the minimalist trends. 




This look from Caseynails actually took me a bit by surprise. It's quite "old school" nail art, a bit of a throw back to when everyone was starting out and just trying to perfect their lines. Perfect for recreating. 


Sophie of The Illustrated Nail is another name you need to know if you're in any way interested in nail art. Here she used a custom mix of 3 polishes to create this deep Oxblood red for Jasper Conran! *makes note to buy all the Oxblood colours I can find*


Enough of all these wearable looks though here are some ridiculous avant-garde looks from CND (of Shellac fame) at NYFW. 



Imagine heading down to post office with these bad boys on! *pokes eye* 



So that's my Instagram run down. So inspired by these looks and can't wait to get to work.

Which are your faves?


Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Saying "Yes" Nails: the fun way to announce your engagement!

One of the things I love about my work as a Nail Technician is the opportunity to be part of the big moments in my clients lives. Be it Birthday, Valentine's Day, Wedding Day or, in the case of my most recent client, the social media announcement of her engagement! I love the opportunity to be just a small part of such special moments.


Well why not eh? She'll be showing off that new bling quite a lot so of course a girl wants her hands to look their best!

One of the best things about this brief was that she didn't want to go too girly. This was not an occasion for my love of glitters and gems. She had the idea of a little stick man and woman to represent them both (we both immediately referenced XKCDwhich is an awesome webcomic if you haven't heard of it). The simpler the better so we just added a couple of hearts and, just in case the message wasn't clear, her answer!




I really love these. It would have been very easy to keep adding detail and sparkle but the brief was to stay as simple as possible and it really works well for the couple. 



Wednesday, 28 January 2015

L'Oreal Color Riche Collection Exclusive Eva's Nude

Phew! That's a bit of a mouthful for a lipstick isn't it?

But lookit! Isn't it pretty. I have to be honest I had been completely bypassed the release of the L'Oreal Color Riche Exclusive collection last year. I've been on a bit of a perpetual spending ban for the last year and had been avoiding every make up counter I could so as to prevent frivolous spending. Obviously it hasn't worked 100% but it does mean a few things have skipped my awareness. 


Eva's Nude (Inspired by/Designed for Eva Longoria) was recommended to me by Laura at www.editor-in-chic.com. I had put out a request on Twitter for some recommendations and this was right up my alley! Described by them as a "Barely Gold" I'd put it as a nice coral nude with a hint of gold, dare I say rose gold? Slightly dark and daunting in bullet form but light and airy on the lips. It's super moist as well so, although you'll most likely have to reapply after lunch, you'll forget you're even wearing it the rest of the day. As seen at the bottom I'm wearing it with an otherwise bare face (mascara doesn't count!) and it doesn't look stupid at all! 
Thanks to NARS I instantly associate matte black packaging with a Luxe feeling so this coupled with the gold trim and celebrity associations really tricks you into believing you've spent way more than you have. 



The Color Riche Collection is available at £6.99 from all the usual retailers however they're currently on a 2 for £14 offer at Boots so you may as well treat yourself properly! 
Or you could forgo the extra lippy and spend £40 on skincare like I did. But that's a story for another day!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Faeriwood Kitchen: Two ingredient Brownies.



Ooey, gooey, fudgey, deliciously chocolatey Brownies. 

There's nothing better right? 

Unless of course you can make them with only 2 ingredients and cater to your ever growing list of gluten/added sugar/dairy/carb free/etc associates. Apologies to those allergic to eggs and nuts, this ones not for you. With myself being Dairy Intolerant through IBS, and my Mum being Coeliac and Crohn's, this is a rare dessert that we can both enjoy!


4 Eggs and 1 Cup (pretty much a whole jar) of Nutella. 

That's all that's in these awesome treats. 

The recipe is simple:

Whisk the eggs until tripled and size and pale yellow in colour. This will take between 6-8 minutes depending on your electric/stand whisk. I wouldn't recommend using a hand whisk unless you have arms like Chris Hemsworth in Thor. In which case well done you.


After drooling over Hemsworth pictures you slowly add, to the eggs, the melted Nutella (Melt it slowly over the hob or in the microwave, whichever is your preference, while the eggs are whisking. I went for the hob but the easiest way I can think of is to literally just microwave the jar of Nutella for about 90 Seconds, stirring every 10-15 seconds to prevent burning.) and whisk in. If you're using a stand mixer you'll need stir the mix up a few times as the Nutella is much heavier than the eggs and will sink to the bottom. 

You'll know when its properly combined because it will magically turn into a normal looking brownie batter. Dark, shiny, and oh so inviting. 

At this stage you pour and scrape every last drop you can into your chosen tin (approximately 8 inches round, or squared, lined with baking paper) and bake at 170°C for approximately 30-35 minutes. 

NB: You might want to make sure your oven shelf is flat, unlike mine, or else your batter will cook at a wonky angle, like mine. Don't worry though it'll still taste awesome at whatever angle it bakes. 

Cool. Cut. Serve. 


And there you have it. 

2 ingredients. 3 steps. No fuss. The only problem with these is that your Nutella consumption will increase quite dramatically. 

If you call that a problem.
 

Friday, 16 January 2015

New Product Alert: Benefit Roller Lash



It's a cold Tuesday night and I'm being led towards the back of a lorry in a deserted car park. No this isn't the beginning of every slasher movie ever made, this is the top secret launch of a new Benefit Cosmetics product. 


Inside we are greeted with a much friendlier scenario. The truck is decorated as a cute kitschy salon as only Benefit could do. We are greeted with non-alcoholic wine, nibbles and the opportunity to coo over the awesome light fixtures. 

We're also surrounded by these giant brushes..




And then the penny drops!

Roller Lash is Benefits answer to the problem of How do you top the best selling Mascara in the world when you're the one that makes it?! Well you make it do everything it's older sister doesn't do!

So what does it promise?

• Specially designed curved brush with 2 types of bristles for both your upper and lower lashes. And no spikey ball.
• A new formula designed to increase the curl of even the straightest lashes! Because brush alone does not a curl make.
• Vitamin B enriched to nourish your lashes - let's face make up isn't always good for you, every little bit of extra nourishment always helps. 
• Easy to remove! Unlike its predecessor they promise that Roller Lash is super easy to remove. No more scrubbing late into the night. 



After a fab demonstration and presentation from the lovely Mark, lead makeup artist and self described "Voice of Benefit", we were able to mingle with the whole team, test out a number of their other new products and spend more time marvelling at the decor. 


Seriously though... These cusions!! 



As we left we were given goodie bags with both Roller Lash itself and Puff Off, an under eye cream released at the end of Jan. Super generous and in this class wee Makeup bag. Thankyou to everyone at Benefit Ireland for such a lovely evening!


So after a few days wear what am I thinking?



Well as you can clearly see it works. Ok my lashes aren't as super curly as you would get with a heated curler or some LVL extensions but there is a definite uplift and I can actually (weirdly?) feel the difference. No camera tricks here just me and my iPhone 6 cam taking stealthy photos in work on an otherwise makeup free face. 

Sold on it yet? I am. 

Roller Lash hits stores on February 28th. Set your reminders now! 

X

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

A night at the auctions


Oh my, it's been a heck of a few weeks my good friends. In a slightly sooner than anticipated step I have moved out of Belfast, out of the world of grotty shared accommodation, and into my own wee flat. It's bliss. 

And with new digs comes new opportunity to put my own stamp on things. Something I've not been allowed to do outside of the bedroom before. Much excite!

Unfortunately after years living in glorified student digs I find myself with lots of stuff and nowhere to put it. So I decided to go to the auctions. I've never been to an auction before, I don't have a budget of hundreds of pounds and have no real plan but sure where's the fun in a plan, eh? 


I walked in to Belfast Auctions and instantly knew I'd be back. It's like a giant jumble sale but organised and there's a funny man in the corner talking really fast!  

I won 4 lots in my first outing and here they are. 

Lot 1: Job Lot - £1
This was all shoved in a box and was quite hard to see everything but 2 things grabbed my attention: Christmassy things and a tea pot. And who could say no when it went down to a £1? I absolutely love the rest of box (SHOTS!) and plan to keep it all!


Lot 2: Wooden Job Lot - £1
Again I was sold on this item by a mere portion of its components. The Russian Dolls which I've had an obsession with since I was a child. Thanks to my mum's lack of sentimentality all my childhood collections have been binned so this is the start of a new one!
Bonus here is the jewellery box and charger plate. Not sure what the other 2 are but I'm pretty sure they're bin bound. And again £1!!

Lot 3: Chest of Drawers - £10
This was slightly spur of the moment as during our reccy round I had dismissed this as looking a bit... Cheap (also I had fallen in love with a Victorian Chess Board Topped Unit that eventually sold for £240... Echem... I did not bid). I grabbed this at £10 so it definitely was cheap, much more suited to my budget, and it was also my first bidding war! I won... Obviously.

Lot 4: Exercise Ball - £1
One of the final lots to be sold, I had spotted this on our way in and joked about buying it. For all those exercises I do.
Well apparently I'll need to learn a few because without even really thinking about it my hand was in the air as soon as it dropped to a £1. Oh well... New year new me and all that!

Total + VAT: £17.50

Quite proud of my first go at the auctions. If you're like me it's something that, if you had the money and the space, you could get quite addicted to. 
Thankfully I have neither so this will do me for a while!

Oh and did you notice? I ended up with lots more stuff and only 1 extra surface to put it! I think this sums it up perfectly.