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Review | KIKO Milano False Lashes Concentrate Waterproof Top Coat Mascara

Waterproof mascara is a must for me considering the extremely humid climate I live in. Unfortunately, not all mascaras I like come in a waterproof version and most of the time I end up putting them aside for this reason. 

Another issue with waterproof mascara is that I have heard people recounting times when they ended up with missing lashes after removing waterproof mascara so I'm afraid waterproof mascara is not for everyone...until now that is!

In my last KIKO order I got two tubes of their False Lashes Concentrate Waterproof Top Coat Mascara out of curiosity and I tried it out as soon as I received my package.

The product is presented in a black carton box and the tube itself is an electric blue chrome in colour - very apt for a waterproof product and it stands out so I like that. I just wish it didn't scratch away that easily. The wand has different sized bristles that enable you to coat all your lashes, even the smallest ones with this top coat mascara.

The product is actually a dense clear gel with no smell that you apply over regular mascara in practically the same manner and allow it to dry.

I have tried this top coat on a variety of mascaras from Catrice, Avon, Pupa Milano and Max Factor and the results have always been astounding - it really does turn them into waterproof versions! With certain brands, waterproof mascara can be a little more expensive so you could say that this product will save you some money as well! As a side note, I have not seen a difference as to length and volume of my lashes.

The KIKO Milano False Lashes Concentrate range has a variety of top and base coat mascaras to help you achieve different looks and all retail at €7.20 from the KIKO Milano website.

Review | Born Pretty Store Silver Chain Nail Decoration

Lately, I have been seeing chain embellishments on nails more frequently and seeing I wanted to this new trend myself, what's better than Born Pretty Store for nail art supplies?!

I decided to try the 3mm silver chain which comes in a little resealable plastic bag. All the chains available on Born Pretty Store are 20cm in length (mine was actually a little longer) and you can choose from 8 varieties.

I thought it was going to be a little tricky to cut the chain to the desired size but a pair of scissors is really all you need! So after measuring your nail, cut the chain to the desired size and put in place over wet nail polish. Press it down gently and leave the polish to dry. You can apply top coat all over the chain or else just apply a little at the sides to keep it anchored.

Today is my fifth day wearing the same manicure and I have never had any issues with any of the chains coming off of nagging to clothes or anything and I think they give any manicure an edge with their 3D feel. 

Get you favourite nail art chain from Born Pretty Store at just $2.45 with free shipping and a 10% discount if you quote my code EBABK31 at checkout.

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Review | NYX HD Concealer CW03 Light

You know how much I loved Essence Stay Natural Concealer but for some reason, the last two tubes that I had seemed to oxidize really bad on my skin thus I had to look for an alternative. I didn't hesitate as to which brand I was going for as I already own the HD foundation from NYX so I figured I should go for their concealer as well.

I started looking up reviews on other blogs and Youtube and this concealer in particular was always given the thumbs up. I wanted it for my under eye area as for blemishes and the rest of my face I use Catrice Camouflage Cream which works exceptionally well!

So off I went to the NYX store in Sliema and Roseberry in Valletta but sadly neither of them had my shade so I had to purchase the concealer online from Ebay. It comes in a clear plastic tube with a doe foot applicator, very similar to a lipgloss and the shade CW03 fits my skin tone perfectly. I would describe it as a pale beige with pink undertones. In all, you get 3g of product.

The texture is on the creamy side and it is easily blended into the skin. Just be careful because a little goes a long way with this! I find it lasts pretty well and being HD, it is camera friendly so it photographs well without you ending up with two bright white patches under your eyes.

I would totally recommend this concealer and with 8 available skin shades and three corrective tones, you are sure to find your match!

NYX HD Concealer is available locally at the NYX Store in Sliema or Roseberry Valletta.

Review | KIKO Milano Acetone Nail Polish Remover Fast & Easy

I guess we all know the familiar feeling of being torn over whether or not to paint our nails in that gorgeous-but-I-can-imagine-what-a-pain-it-will-be-to-remove glitter polish or that dark vampy red shade that will end up all over your fingers.

Up to now, I have been using the foil removal method at it works wonders at removing such stubborn polishes but I cannot always do both my hands at once unless I get some help from anyone at home to apply the cotton pad and foil to my dominant hand so it can get a little time consuming.

Consequently, I decided to give this dip-sponge type of polish remover from KIKO Milano a go in my last order and I am still thinking to myself why didn't I get the whole stock???

First things first, this polish remover comes in a 75ml bottle with a screw-top cap and it has two big acetone polish remover soaked sponges with a small hole in between them where you put your fingers. It has quite a strong smell so a well ventilated area is a must when using this. The bottle is supplied in its own box.

I am very impressed with the fast mode of action of this baby as it works wonders at removing any kind of nail polish effectively in just a few seconds! All you have to do is just dip your nails one at a time in the hole between the two sponges, twist the bottle back and forth for a few seconds and voila'! your nail polish is gone without a trace! It is also effective at removing soak off gel polish and plastic false nails.

Even though this nail polish remover is acetone based, I have never had any issues with it drying out my nails or anything primarily because it acts very fast so you don't need to soak your nails in it for a long time.

KIKO Acetone Nail Polish Remover Fast & Easy is available from the KIKO Cosmetics website at €5.90 and is also available in an Acetone-Free version.

Of Nail Polish and Swatch Sticks - Nail Mail!

Over the past couple of months I have been buying quite a few nail polishes and related items online. It's like going through a phase where soemtimes you favour buying lipsticks, other times blush and other instances nail polish. Although most of the time it's all these things together, lately, the latter category tickled my fancy the most. Well let's face it, nail polish was my first love :) Here's what I got!

To start with, I bought a set of soak-off nail clips so that I can use these when I want to take off hard-to-remove nail polish or gel polish by soaking my nails in acetone. I have already used these a couple of times and I quite like them for they are easy to use and hold the cotton disc in place. I also got a new box for all my nail art brushes and tools and I'm happy to say this houses all my tools neatly. 

Moving on to actual nail polishes, I bought quite a handful, starting with Zoya Ibiza and Neve for I was looking for a nice metallic blue. I first got Ibiza and it turned out to be the perfect blue but then I saw swatches of Neve which has a hint of purple and looks like nothing in my collection so I went ahead and got that too.

I also got three shades out of the Essie Cashmere Matte Collection, namely, Coat Couture, Comfy in Cashmere and Just Stitched. I have already worn the first two and I'm in love with their finish! They lasted for around three days without chipping (remember they dry matte so I didn't top coat them) and I really like the iridescent sheen in them.

I have also acquired three Sinful Colors in the shades Shamrockin' (which of course I wore for St. Patrick's) as well as Flower Power and Petal Be The Day from their Spring collection. The formula with these is very nice to work with and the glitter is evenly distributed.

From OPI, I got the Fifty Shades Collection and the Sheer Tints both in the mini versions. I really like the mini bottles can't wait to use these polishes!

Lastly, I got myself 6 packets of swatch sticks and ring binders to re-organize my swatches. The thing is, I had my swatches on swatch wheels but whenever I got a new polish, I had to paint on the next available post on the wheel and to me it just didn't look right to have a light coloured polish in the middle of dark ones etc so I looked up alternative methods of organizing swatches and this appealed to me the most. So I went ahead and bought myself all the supplies and swatched all my collection in 4 days. I'm really happy with how this little project turned out so if you would like me to do a post on how I swatch and organize my polish collection, please do let me know!

Review | Born Pretty Store Striped Metallic Round Studs

I am always looking for new and unusual nail art embellishments to add to my stash and the latest ones come courtesy of Born Pretty Store and their striped, round rhinestones.

There are round and oval studs to choose from in different sizes and I chose the round 2mm ones for they fit my nails better. These studs have a domed appearance and they bear a striped design which makes them truly unique.

They can be used in different nail art designs and I chose to add them to the centres of flowers I stamped on my nails. I find these studs go best with purples, greys, reds, oranges and blues so you are really spoilt for choice with colours to match them to. All studs held up well with a good adhering base polish. 

These striped studs come in sets if 10 or 15 pieces and retail for $4.20. You can get 10% off your order by quoting my code EBABK31 at checkout. Shipping from Born Pretty Store is always free so you can splurge a little more ;)

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London Haul

Last week was one of the best so far for 2015 as I got to spend it in London with my boyfriend and his family for graduation. It was my first time in London and it definitely won't be the last! There's so much to see and do! 

It goes without saying that a trip to London is not complete without a little shopping so I planned out a full day of shopping in the most popular districts and streets of this magnificent city. My visa was definitely not happy with this but I really did enjoy myself and that's all that matters ;) Here is what I bought for myself.

The first hop we hit was obviously Primark. All Maltese nationals love Primark and I could now see why myself. I mostly grabbed myself a handful of polishes, a lipstick, face and hair masks, foundation sponges to use for nail art and a cute three-row necklace. I have already swatched the polishes and happen to really like the Angelica ones for they have a very nice formula and brush. My favourite thiugh is the spherical one which smells of orchids when dry and has a perfume bottle shape. Keep your eyes peeled for more nail polish and nail related items that I got online in the next haul post.

At the bottom of the picture is Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in 005 Nude which I have been looking for forever and I managed to find at Boots. The Balance Me lipgloss and Garnier moisturiser sample were free with a Glamour magazine issue.

From Primark I also scored this fringed cover-up which I will be taking with me on a cruise come July and a dirty green sleeveless loose shirt with lace details on the shoulders. The other two tops and shirt are all from H&M, another store I look forward to visiting while on holiday. I think they have good quality clothes at reasonable prices and I just can't understand why they won't open a store here :/ I also found a cossack hat at Camden Market and it really does keep me warm :)

Moving on to the luxury purchases, I was in awe all the time while we were browsing Harrods. It is by far my favourite spot of the whole trip, especially their shoe heaven! I just couldn't stop oohing and aahing over all the beautiful Choos, Louboutins, Manolos and Sophia Webster's creations to name a few but I only had a day of shopping so I had to re-compose myself to get what I wanted.

First up, I bought a Michael Kors Jet-Set Tote that I have been wanting for ages and I chose one in a dark blue colour so it matches a lot of outfits. I also got the Rouge Louboutin nail polish which I can say is a very beautiful red and I really love the packaging of it! Also from Harrods, I picked up a few things from MAC for Marija from Pocalocca and while I was there I got the Mineralize Blush in Gleeful and a Retro Matte Lipstick in All Fired Up which my boyfriend chose for me. The blush is very pigmented and you have to be extra careful to use a light hand with it but I really love it for it stays on all day.

I finally got my hands on the Urban Decay Naked 3 palette from House of Fraser which I cannot wait to use! I've swatched a couple of shades and I could see what all the hype is about. They have excellent pigmentation and I'm really looking forward to creating makeup looks with them!

Lastly, I got a London shot glass and a London Eye glass souvenir to add to my personal collections.

Review | Born Pretty Store Sparkling Waterdrop Round Rhinestones

Hello ladies :) Today I have another Born Pretty Store review as you can tell by the title of this post and I still have a few more to go as they have sent me some more exciting stuff to share with you!

This post is going to be all about these beautiful round rhinestones which look like water droplets thanks to their iridescent colour. They come in a pack of 10 and have a little dome shape with a silver flat back. These rhinestones are available in both 3mm and 4mm (shown in this post are the 3mm ones).

They can be paired with a multitude of nail colours and nail art designs, and are very easy to adhere to your nails with just some nail glue or clear nail polish. Sealing them with a top coat will guarantee even more wear. Plus, when changing your manicure, you can carefully remove these rhinestones first to save them for a later use if you so desire! 

Here I have paired them with a purple based dry brush manicure and I think this really brings out the purple reflects in the rhinestones.

How would you use these rhinestones ladies? Buy them from Born Pretty Store for just $3.28 and get an additional 10% off with my code EBABK31.

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Monthly Favourites | February

Being just four days late on the February favourites isn't really late right? Here goes!

Just like the last month, Planter's Aloe Vera Natural & Young Cream coupled with Essence Studio Nails Moisturizing Cuticle Cream have been life savers for my hands against the cold and very low temperatures we were getting.

The rest of the makeup products and tools are actually all new with the exception of the KIKO eyeshadow palette. This was actually a limited edition palette and I'm really glad I got it because I wear all four colours a lot and I even like to use the medium taupe on my brows for a fuller look. Also from KIKO are the dual ended foundation brush which offers excellent coverage and the False Lashes Concentrate which turns every mascara into a waterproof version.

Lastly, I have Essence Effect Lipgloss in C04 Red Sugar and MUD Lipstick in Burlesque which I have been reaching for the most and NYX HD Concealer in CW03 Light which is my new favourite concealer for under eyes.

January & February Collective Haul

Phew it has been a hectic few days for me and I barely had time to switch on my laptop, let alone blog so please excuse my absence. Next week I will be flying to London for the first time in my life and I really have worked hard to restrain myself from buying all the good sale deals in order to save up for splurging there ;) Consequently I thought of doing one collective haul post for January and February since I didn't buy a lot of stuff. I did however treat myself to quite a few nail polishes but I will do a separate post on those.

The first purchase I want to share with you are these gorgeous boots from Nine West. I have been wanting a pair of heeled brown boots for a long time and now here they are! I got them on sale for €132 which I understand that it may be a little pricey for some but as long as the shoe is comfy and I know I will get a lot of wear out of, I put the price aside.

Next are a few sale bargains that I got from Jennyfer in Gozo and Asos (Caroline you're to blame for this one :p). I bought this faux leather skirt with laser cut-out details and scallop edges for just €7 (instead of €20) and the aviator jacket was marked down to €15 from €50 and they were both the last ones in my size - I would have been stupid to just leave them there! The Fashion Union dress from Asos was more of an impulse buy but at a mere €10 I think it's a nice little addition to my closet.

Next, here are some online purchases, all of which are from Ebay. I got a tangle teezer dupe as I already have one which I keep at work and I find it leaves my hair super soft, an XL stamper (more info coming soon), a flower ear cuff, a lipstick holder and NYX HD Concealer. I got the shade CW03 Light which is a perfect match for me.

During one of my lunch breaks at work, I caved and bought this gorgeous Max Factor Lipstick in 685 Mulberry and one of my quick trips to Sliema I popped into OVS and bought an assortment of Essence nail products, an Effect Lipgloss in the shade C04 Red Sugar and a cute pair of tweezers. From the NYX store, I bought the Jumbo Eye Pencil in 615 Slate and an Eye/Eyebrow Pencil in 924 Yellow, both of which I needed for carnival. 

Stay tuned for a nail products haul coming soon!