Saturday, 26 January 2019

Random (& Cheap!) Makeup & Beauty Finds

A few days ago, my best friend came down to Dundee to spend 24 hours in the city. You probably would expect us to have visited the V&A or the McManus Galleries, to have seen a show at the Rep Theatre or watched a critically-acclaimed film at the DCA.

But instead, we went on a scavenger hunt around the city to find makeup bargains because we're both a bit makeup-mad. 

I should say right at the outset that my bestie undoubtedly had the best find. Sitting on the makeup table in TKMaxx was an Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture palette, untouched and almost half the recommended retail price. She would have been mad not to pick it up. We had fun swatching the shades once we were back at mine, and the colours were ridiculously beautiful and buttery-smooth, quite different from what I was expecting considering the negative reviews that had surrounded the palette upon its release. Maybe my mate found one from a good batch because there didn't seem to be much fall-out at all. 

This post isn't a full-on review of the Subculture palette, though. This is about all the little bits and bobs that I picked up while we were out in town together, because the evening after I had loaded my bag and pockets full of new makeup goodies, I sat down in front of my mirror to try them all out with the kind of excitement that only new makeup can bring. Here's a quick list of what I picked up before we get into things:

Bodycare:
Cyclax Nature Pure Apricot Facial Scrub
Eye Candy Dramatise Strip Lashes

Primark:
PS...Coconut Ice Lip Scrub
PS...Primer Water
PS...Brow Enhancing Serum

Poundland:
Make Up Gallery Good To Glow Matte Bronzer in the shade Matte Medium 2
Make Up Gallery Soft Kohl Eyeliner in the shade Brown 4

B&M:
W7 On The Rocks Eye Colour Palette
NYX Turnt Up! Lipsticks, including the shades Mirage & Flawless

Secondhand makeup that my lovely friend gifted to me:
Soph X Revolution Highlighter Palette
No. 7 Stay Perfect Liquid Eyeliner
NARS Lip Gloss in the shade Turkish Delight


And now, here's what happened when I tried everything out:

Cyclax Nature Pure Apricot Facial Scrub
Before starting with the makeup, I took the apricot face scrub for a spin. I suppose it was my fault that my face felt a little raw after I had scrubbed it onto my skin since the instructions specify that you should apply it 'gently', and I was practically attacking my spot-prone cheeks, but oh well. I'll remember for next time. It left my skin feeling very smooth, I'll give it that, plus the tub is huge and it only cost me 99p! Absolute bargain for something that only needs to be used 1-2 times a week. I'm willing to bet this will last me at least six months if not a whole year. 

PS...Coconut Ice Lip Scrub
I may have reluctantly turned my back on the (extremely delicious) bubblegum lip scrub from Lush, but I couldn't resist a coconut-flavoured scrub for half the price from Primark, and I'm glad that I didn't stifle the urge. I have been struggling with an old New Look lip scrub which is oddly clumpy and sticky, unlike this one which is gritty and fine, and actually felt like it was exfoliating my lips when I used it. I'm sure that the ingredients in the Primark lip scrub don't exactly make it as safe for consumption as the Lush ones, but I just had to sneak a taste of the coconut one, and it was pretty darn tasty. If I suddenly fall ill, it's probably because I've been poisoned by flavoured cosmetics. Taste aside, it left my lips feeling soft, and once I added my usual Maybelline Babylips Balm on top, they felt smoother than they had in ages.

PS...Primer Water
Another Primark find was a large bottle of priming water, a type of product that I had only tried once before. As much as I enjoyed priming water, I never really trusted it to work on my oily skin, but what harm would it do to add a priming water to my collection, even to use in addition to my usual silicone primer before a night out to ensure that my makeup looks flawless? I was pleasantly surprised by this Primark water, as it turns out - it left my skin feeling slightly tacky and ready for makeup.

Make Up Gallery Good To Glow Matte Bronzer in the shade Matte Medium 2
I dragged my friend into Poundland after seeing their makeup stand through the window, and since every product was only (you guessed it) £1 each, I felt no regrets by adding this bronzer to my makeup collection. That's what I love about cheaper makeup - if it's garbage, you didn't waste much money, and if it's great, you've found a hidden gem! This bronzer, while not quite a hidden gem, was nevertheless very nice: warm-toned (perhaps a little too warm-toned for me, but I'm trying to warm up my appearance by tanning, so it might work on me eventually) and buildable. 

Soph X Revolution Highlighter Palette
My friend knows that I'm a bit of a Revolution Beauty nut, so when she heard that I didn't yet have the Soph X Revolution Highlighter Palette while she was debating whether or not to give hers away, the solution was obvious. Her secondhand palette has clearly been used and loved, but for someone who had moved on to Becca highlighters a long time ago, she had no real use for it anymore, and placed it into my eager hands when she arrived in Dundee. It's not on the same level as my favourite highlighter palette (the Revolution Beauty Incandescent Face Quad, the best thing you can buy with a £10 note), but it's lovely nonetheless, with a beautiful range of shades for any occasion and any look. Genuinely feel like SophDoesNails can do no wrong when it comes to her makeup collaborations!

PS...Brow Enhancing Serum
As someone with very sparse and light natural brows, I was curious to know what this brow serum was. It doesn't come with an ingredients list or any instructions, simply a slogan on the tube that says 'for thicker, longer and fuller looking brows'. I added it to my basket anyway, keen to know whether or not I'll see a difference in my brows as a result of using it. I'll keep you posted. All I know is that it seems like a nice alternative to using a clear mascara to prime my brows before adding pomade and gel. Please make my brows thicker and fuller - I'm counting on you!

Make Up Gallery Soft Kohl Eyeliner in the shade Brown 4
And once again, I have to reveal that I'm a bit of a dingus. I was sure that I was buying an eyebrow pencil, but instead picked up a dark brown eyeliner. Nevertheless, I gave it a go on my eyebrows just in case, but it is clearly not meant to be used anywhere but the eyes. It's surprisingly soft and pigmented, I must say, considering the fact that I have bought eyeliner pencils from Rimmel and Maybelline in the past that were so stiff that I could barely get any colour out of them. Embarrassing that eyeliner pencils from these well-known drugstore brands are being outperformed by Poundland cosmetics. I can imagine that this eyeliner will actually perform very well once I get around to using it on my eyes. It was too dark for my eyebrows anyway, so using it for them was an all-round bad decision. Well done, me.

W7 On The Rocks Eye Colour Palette - Outside

W7 On The Rocks Eye Colour Palette - Inside
While my friend snagged a true ABH Subculture palette, I made the decision to add the same colours to my collection but in a different form. This dupe palette cost me £4, and the colours are pretty much identical apart from the names, the undertones in the white shade, and the fact that one of the glitters is a lot greener in the cheaper version than the real one. I was skeptical while I was in the store, and swatched a couple of the colours in a palette that had already been opened and pawed by other shoppers, and while it's obviously not even in the same league as ABH, it's a suitable substitute. It's actually quite nice - the shadows work well with the double-ended brush that comes with it, and even the brush itself is very fluffy and soft, much like the actual ABH brush that my friend let me keep (did I mention that I love her?). So yes, this one is a win. Never thought I'd say that I like a product from W7, but here we are.

No. 7 Stay Perfect Liquid Eyeliner
Here, we have one of the few products that didn't work out, but luckily, it's one of the products that I got for free. Once a part of my friend's makeup collection, she offered it to me in the hopes that I would like it, although she warned me that the applicator was a bit weird. I'm so used to the ultra-thin brush of my favourite NYX liquid liner that this spongey and slightly thicker applicator was difficult to use. My liner turned out uneven. The formula is good, so that's a plus, but I definitely won't be reaching for this when I next feel like doing a cat eye.

Eye Candy Dramatise Strip Lashes
I'm not exactly the biggest fan of false lashes. Every time I try them, it never seems to work out. However, when I saw these wispy and more natural-looking lashes staring at me from a shelf in Bodycare, I knew I needed to try them out. And boy, am I glad that I did! These were fairly easy to apply, even for a novice like me, and once they were on, they simply looked like my lashes but longer! I only had to add a little mascara to blend everything together, and voilĂ ! I'll definitely try out other lashes from this brand when I get the chance.

NYX Turnt Up! Lipsticks in the shades Mirage & Flawless
I did a double-take when I saw NYX lipsticks in B&M. It's a store that seems to be good for finding products that have recently been discontinued, things you thought were gone forever but which are still clinging on. With these NYX lippies, it was a choice between a set of brights or nudes, and I went for the nude ones. Once I applied the palest shade Mirage to my lips, I realised that the shade was too pale for my skin tone, and for a moment, I had a 'foundation lips' moment. I used the mid shade in the set named Flawless instead, which turned out a little better. However, as someone who favours thick, matte lipsticks, this sheer formula was a bit too wishy-washy for my taste. I've tried them since and they work well when they're layered up and blotted with a tissue between applications, but as I looked at myself in the mirror after trying them for the first time, I decided the look needed a little something else.

NARS Lip Gloss in the shade Turkish Delight
Enter the high-end lip gloss that I had been gifted by my bestie. I'm not a huge fan of glosses, but having never tried any NARS products before, I thought I'd give it a go to see how it differed from other cheaper glosses that I had used previously. It's thick and sticky, not something that I would pile on in layers or wear on its own, but which gave new life to my lipstick. It's a beautiful shade of pink that warmed up my lips too, for which I was grateful since the two nude NYX lipsticks are both on the cool side of the colour spectrum.



Overall, I was happy with how everything turned out. Buying makeup is always a gamble, but I always find it's less risk to buy things that are less expensive, as I mentioned above. I always like experimenting with new things too, hence why I bought the facial scrub, the wispy false lashes, the priming water, and the brow serum, and the places to look for these things are normally places in which you wouldn't expect to find good makeup: the cosmetics sections of clothing stores, pound shops, and even charity and secondhand shops, which is where I once found Urban Decay eyeshadow primers. Don't forget TKMaxx either, which is a fantastic place to rummage around in search of some bargains on high-end makeup. Basically, doing your makeup on a budget shouldn't have to be boring or infuriating, and there's makeup everywhere you turn these days, so there are products to suit any budget. Cheap makeup isn't always poor quality, just as high-end makeup isn't always worth the money.

I'd quite like to write a little more about makeup and beauty products in the future. I'm by no means a guru, but I love finding weird items and cheap products that I think will add something to my makeup routine. Writing about makeup feels like a copout in terms of blog material, but it's a lot of fun to sit down in front of your mirror with a load of new things to try, although I know from experience what little fun it is when one product manages to ruin your whole look. I'll count myself lucky on this occasion that I found products that work. Now, excuse me while I go and mess around with my face again.
SHARE:

No comments

Post a Comment

© Vitriolic Bumblr
Blogger Template Designed by pipdig