A WEEKEND IN PRAGUE: IS IT WORTH THE VISIT?

You think Christmas is pretty over here in England? So did I until I visited Prague.

Even though it feels like a lifetime ago…I flew over to Prague in early December with my boyfriend for a long weekend trip, mainly for a weekend full of fun, exploration and to see some new sights.

However, when I was approaching Old Town Square, little did I know that I would be faced with a 31 metre high Christmas tree. It was breathtaking. A row of little stalls were behind this tree too, which smelt divine. They sold a lot of Prague delicacies, such as dumplings, potatoes and pork.

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As well as Prague being aesthetically pleasing, they also had on offer a lot of ‘different’ attractions that we could not resist going into. The first excursion we did was going to a sex museum. I was a tiny bit apprehensive as to what I was going to be faced with… and yes, it’s exactly what you think it is. Hundreds of different and obscure sex toys and instruments back from hundreds of years ago. Despite giggling throughout most of it, it was actually very interesting and now my sex toy history knowledge is tip-top!

To top this peculiarity off, we then went into a little theatre type room which was right at the back of the building. We then sat down with the other tourists who looked just as bemused as us. A few minutes passed and then we found ourselves watching a 19-40- something porno!! We couldn’t not watch it, it was hilarious watching genitals in black and white. I left that place a different person.

We then went to a different museum which I feel more in touch with… the beer museum! Even though I am not a great fan of beer, it was still fun to gain a knowledge about the background history of Prague beer and, more importantly, got to taste lots of it! It’s safe to say I left that place feeling a bit more jolly!

*FYI – The nights out in Prague are amazing, we did a bar crawl and it was so much fun, unlimited drinks in the first bar for 3 hours, which meant only one thing… A very drunk Ellen!*

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Above all of these wonderful experiences, Prague is such a beautiful city. Every angle had something new to deliver, after every hour the sky would turn another glorious shade of blue. Although I felt as though I did a lot during my time in the Czeck Republic, I would definitely return to Prague simply because there are so many more wacky museums and brilliant new experiences that need to be explored.

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Plus, I visited Hamley’s for the first time and I have never seen so many toys under one roof before in my life! There was even a carousel in the middle of the shop, (seriously) and a slide! I couldn’t quite contain my excitement.

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All in all, Prague has definitely been one of the most interesting cities i’ve visited, and would definitely recommend going.. there’s something here for everyone!

Have you ever visited Prague before?

Much Love,

Ellen Grace X

MY GO TO MAKEUP

I love experimenting with make up and trying new brands and products; however, I must admit, when it comes to my ‘go to’ makeup, I play it quite safe, by sticking to the same old, trust-worthy products. However, if you are interested in how I create my everyday makeup look like the picture below, then keep on reading!

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Products Used –

  • To start with, I use the Nivea for men sensitive post shave balm. I started using this after watching NikkieTutorials, and I must say it’s the best primer and moisturiser i’ve ever used! I dab a tiny bit into the palm of my hands and use circular motions when applying it into the skin. The consistency will then thicken and go tacky, meaning the foundation stays on for a lot longer!img_5620
  • Foundation – Rimmel London Lasting Finish foundation in 100 ‘Ivory’ img_5636
  • Blended in with the real techniques buffing brush
  • Concealer – Collection 200 lasting perfection (absolute favourite concealer, beats all the others i’ve tested, high end and drugstore!)
  • Eyebrows – Rimmel London Brow This Way in 002 Light Brown. I use the wax on the left side – it’s amazing and very inexpensive!img_5429img_5435
  • Applied with Zoeva 322 Angled Brow Line Brushzoeva
  • For powder I use Rimmel London Stay Matte in 002 Pink Blossom for all over my face (I prefer translucent powder for an everyday look!
  • Applied with Mac 187 powder brush (Don’t sweep brush across your face as it only moves the foundation and takes it off, instead push the powder into your skin with the brush by pressing it in, as this pushes the product into your skin, thus making it more long lasting)
  • I also use Laura Mercier Transcluscent powder under my eyes. I keep it on for about 10 minutes whilst I do the rest of my face, also known as ‘baking’. This avoids my concealer from concealing and keeps it on for a lot longer!img_5409img_5398
  • Next is bronzer! On the hollows of my cheeks I use Ted Baker Bronzer and Blush compact duo. I sometimes also use the bronzer for eyeshadow – it gives a great, glowy look! I apply this with the Real Techniques contour brushimg_5622
  • For highlight I use my favourite drugstore highlight which is the MUA Undress your Skin Highlighter which is applied with Real Techniques Fan Brushimg_5627
  • Mascara – Rimmel London Bold Curves

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Ok, when it’s all listed down it does seem like an awful lot! In reality most of the time I normally just pop a bit of vaseline on my lips and rush out of the door because I’m always in a rush, haha! Anyway, what is your favourite go to make up look?

Much Love,

Ellen Grace X

MY FAVOURITE LIP PRODUCTS

Over the past few months I have been conjuring up a decent lip collection (finally!), full of lipsticks, glosses and lacquers which I love and wear on a day-to-day basis. However, a couple of the shades I branch out and reach for if I was going to a special event or occasion if they’re on the more daring side!

Firstly lipsticks; I have four in my favourites, three of them are Mac, and one Rimmel London Kate Moss. All of which I adore for different reasons.

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Firstly, ‘Shanghai Spice’ which is my favourite nude shade of all my favourites (ha!) as the cremesheen formula glides onto my lips perfectly and keeps them feeling really moisturised and nourished. However, I particularly love this shade as it has slight peachy tones in it which is great as it makes my face look more vibrant and alive. This product is great as it is obvious that you have something on your lips, but it doesn’t look too dramatic as it is a shimmery nude shade, which is great for an everyday look.

I have only recently bought Mac’s Matte ‘Ruby Woo’, however I have been loving it. This is one of the first matte lipsticks that I have tried out due to my apprehensive and incorrect preconceptions that a matte lipstick would completely dry out my lips and make them look really wrinkly and gross… and boy I can say I was so wrong! This lipstick is a lovely deep red which in fact actually nourishes my lips, despite it being matte. However, one slight problem with this lipstick is that due to its strong pigmentation, if you smudge it or apply it in a rush and get some product around your mouth it does stain it a bit, meaning I had a slight red line down my cupids bow the first time I applied it, (not a good look!). So would recommend using a lip liner before applying the product for those who aren’t comfortable or used to applying deep reds. Apart from that, this lipstick is amazing and love wearing it on nights out to make my make up stand out that little bit more.

Mac’s ‘Sunny Seoul’ was the first Mac lipsticks I ever bought, and it had me hooked right from the beginning! This is such a pretty nude, with more of a pink tone running through it which looks so pretty to wear on a summer’s day! It is also super shimmery which makes it look all the more lovely. The formula is very smooth and applies really easily to the lips due to the moisturising nature of the lipstick. Throughout the summer this was definitely my ‘GO TO’ lipstick. I will definitely be purchasing another one!

Last but not least for my favourite lipsticks is the Kate Moss lipstick in ‘110’. This matte coral shade is beautiful to wear as it really makes my face look more vibrant. It is really easy to wear which is great, however I do tend to wear it more on a special occasion as it is very bright, I personally think it is a bit too dramatic for a day-to-day lipstick. However, I love it all the same. It also tastes and smells amazing which is an added bonus!

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Now onto Lip glosses and Lacquers which I have quite recently discovered and been loving. Lacquers are great and so easy to apply due to the wand being able to reach all the nooks and crannies. Plus, I love how it stains your lips slightly as it means hints of the colour stays on throughout the day, which makes it look like you’ve put more effort into your make up then perhaps you might have actually done – winning!

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Soap&Glory Sexy Mother Pucker

The Soap&Glory Sexy Mother Pucker Lip Lacquer is just amazing. It is a shimmery deep raspberry pink with very slight brown undertones which makes it look so unique and beautiful. I wear this all the time as it’s so easy to apply with the fluffy wand, and the durability of it is good. I would normally have to reapply it a couple of times if I were on a night out, which isn’t too bad for the price of the product. However, this lacquer definitely does stain my lips and makes it appear as if I have product on there even after it has all been smudged off. This is supposed to make your lips appear more plump, i’m not entirely sure it does that. But who cares when the colour itself is so good? However, one criticism about this is that the formula is quite thick so I find I apply the product to my lips with the wand and then use my finger to blend it in a bit to smudge out harsh lines and blotches. But this only takes a few seconds so I don’t see that as a major disadvantage.

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17 Ultimate Volume

The 17 ‘Ultimate Volume’ lipgloss is an amazing lipgloss for an everyday look. It is a very light pink/purple shade which takes seconds to apply due to its easy application wand and colour, and lasts a really long time. I love using it as it just brightens up my face completely and just makes me look more vibrant due to it’s shimmery formula, and makes it look like i’ve put loads of time into my make up, when in fact i’ve just whacked this on my lips in no time at all. All in all I love this lipgloss and use it pretty much daily!

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Rimmel London Show Off in 300 Out of this World

I have only had the Rimmel London Show Off Lip Lacquer in ‘300 Out of this World’ for a couple of weeks, and I have been obsessed with it since the moment the wand touched my lips. The colour is a beautiful shimmery cherry red, that looks amazing on. Granted, lacquers are supposed to stain your lips, however this one really does and its durability is amazing. The wand is also perfect as the sponge is slightly domed meaning it can reach my lips so easily that it takes application seconds!

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Soap&Glory left, 17 middle, Rimmel London right

What are your favourite lip products? Do you have any shades that you’d recommend?

Much Love,

Ellen Grace X

REVIEW: INFAMOUS RIMMEL FOUNDATIONS

Everybody has heard of them. That’s right, it’s the infamous Rimmel London foundations; Match Perfection and and Lasting Finish.

Shockingly, it wasn’t until a few weeks ago that I actually tried the Lasting Finish foundation in shade 100; Ivory. Before that I was using the Lasting Perfection foundation in shade 103; True Ivory.

Although they look fairly similar aesthetically, due to them both having the same 30ml glass exterior, and a plastic pump, they are in fact very different. Match Perfection has a medium coverage; whereas Lasting Finish has a full coverage.

Match Perfection gives a more dewy finish and does look a lot more natural. So, if you want that desired look, then I would definitely recommend this foundation. Whereas due to the full coverage, Lasting Finish gives a thicker, more matte look. Personally, I prefer Lasting Finish for the coverage as it requires only a pump to get my satisfied coverage, whereas I find I use more of Match Perfection, and then looking a tad orange. However, Match Perfection will be an amazing foundation for the summer due to its natural shine, and due to the light consistency.

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I personally found that Match Perfection did not last as long as Lasting Finish. After a few hours it would go a bit patchy and rise to the surface of my skin, whereas Lasting Finish has amazing staying power and stays on all day without any touch-ups.

However, both foundations blend easily. I did originally find that with Lasting Finish, the consistency is thicker than Match Perfection, so when blending you can feel it going onto the skin and have to put a tiny bit more effort into blending than Match Perfection, but that’s only very minor, and isn’t that noticeable.

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I would notice, more often than not, with Match Perfection when my foundation oxidises after a few hours, it does turn a few shades more orange, so when I get home after my day out I realise the shade doesn’t actually match my neck all that well! Lasting Finish also oxidises but not to the same extent, I find that it matches my skin tone a lot more.

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What I found mainly from Match Perfection –

Pros

  • Lovely, dewy finish
  • Light foundation
  • Great range of shades (12 to pick from)
  • Very affordable
  • Easy to apply
  • Smooth finish
  • Blends great
  • Light consistency

Cons 

  • Can sink into pores quite easily
  • Find that I can look a bit orange with an extra pump
  • Can get patchy with dry skin

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What I found mainly from Lasting Finish –

Pros 

  • Has a comfort serum for the skin
  • Stays on very well
  • Colour shade is true to the skin
  • Sweat, humidity, heat and transfer proof
  • Covers redness and imperfections really well
  • Doesn’t dry up
  • Doesn’t go cakey

Cons

  • It can accentuate fine lines (eg my smile lines)
  • Limited shade range (only 8 shades to choose from)
  • Can feel quite thick when blending.
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Top – Lasting Finish Bottom – Match Perfection

Personally, I would recommend Match Perfection for those who don’t have much redness or blemishes to cover, but instead want to have a lighter, more natural, dewy coverage.

Whereas Lasting Finish is more suited for those who want to cover more, and have a thicker, more fuller coverage, and more of a matte finish.

All in all, they are both very good foundations that have different functions and properties, and would recommend them both!

Have you tried both of these foundations out? Which one was your fave?

Much Love,

Ellen Grace X

MY TOP 3 EYEBROW PRODUCTS

I have such a love/hate relationship with my eyebrows. Mine are uneven, little thin slugs that are impossible to make look reasonably good. However, in my opinion eyebrows are one of the most crucial things to get right as they can completely change the whole structure of your face, so because of that, my eyebrows are very important in my make up routine. So, here are my top three favourite brow products that I equally love and use for different reasons.

Number 1, Smashbox Brow Tech Matte Pencil in ‘Taupe’

I’ve only had this product for a couple of months but I have loved it from the moment it hit my brows. It has a lovely smooth formula which means the product glides on perfectly to my brows. Albeit the colour is perhaps a shade too light for my eyebrows, but it still is a great product! I love how I can slightly overdraw my brows and it doesn’t look fake either. I also really enjoy that you can twizzle the product up as opposed to sharpening pencils because I never bother doing that and the end just becomes all short and blunt, (laziness at its prime!) With the other side of the pencil being a spooly brush which means you can brush through your eyebrows at the beginning to get the exact shape, and after to comb out any harsh lines and make them look more natural.

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However, the one downside to the product is that the actual stick of the pencil is very thin, so when I apply the product it can sometimes fall off and crumble in my hand which can be very annoying. Also, due to the small pencil it can be quite fiddly to hold sometimes and to twizzle up, I personally prefer a larger stick. (That sounds weird). But all in all I really do enjoy this pencil, retailing at a reasonable £16.50.

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Secondly is the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Pomade in ‘Medium Brown’

At first, I had a love/hate relationship with this product because it’s quite hard to get a hang of and I’m really impatient with trying out products as if it doesn’t work or look good the first time I wear it, then I probably won’t wear it again. However, I am so glad I stuck the dipbrow out as now it’s a must-have in my make up collection. It’s a gel formula so to apply the product I use the Zoeva 322 Brow Line brush which is great for easy application due to its angled brush.

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Another added bonus with this product is that a little goes a long way which is great as it does cost £15, so won’t need to buy a new one for a long time! However, this was one of my major problems when I first started out, that I used to put way too much product on my brush and my brows would end up like black lines across my face, (not a good look!) A little dap in the pomade will pretty much do my whole brow, which is great as it means this product will last a really long time. I just hope it stays the same consistency and doesn’t dry up with age. However, all in all I genuinely love this product and use it most days. The days when I don’t wear it is if i’m in a rush as it does take that extra few minutes to apply and perfect, so tend to go for a pencil instead.

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Nah definitely not pouting here;)

The only downside to the dip brow is that, for me, it’s quite a heavy product and gives a more dramatic look. So if you want your brows to look really natural then i’d advise going for a pencil, or using a minuscule amount of the product as it is thick.

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Thirdly is the Soap&Glory Archery Brown Tint & Precision Shaping Pencil in ‘Brownie Points’

This eyebrow pencil was one of the first I had ever bought a few years ago and essentially got me into filling in my brows everyday! I find this product great to put on if you’re in a rush as it takes no time at all and gives a great natural look due to the double-ended pen, with one side being a waxy pencil that is great as it glides on perfectly without the feeling of it pulling which helps for great application. I mainly use the waxy pencil for filling in the front of the brow, and the other end a little felt tip pen which is great for filling in them sparse hairs and gives the brows a lot more coverage.

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One of the many reasons why I love this brow pencil is because the product itself does not budge. Once it’s on the brows it’s their all day which I love as I don’t have to worry about my eyebrows being on my cheeks, (what an image lol). Plus, the actual pencil itself is of a good size too which means holding the pencil is great for precision due to its chunky style. Plus, this product is very affordable too, coming in at a very modest £10! I’ve gone through several of these pencils and each time I use it, it keeps getting better and better. Definitely would recommend for someone starting out in filling in their brows simply due to the quick and easy application.

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This is me with the product on 🙂

What do you wear regularly on your eyebrows? Do you have any suggestions on new products to try?

Much love,

Ellen Grace X

COMPRESSED OR LOOSE POWDER?

You want to make your makeup last during your stressful, long day, without having to worry your shiny or oily? Then the difference between compressed or loose powder may determine this.

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Both powders have the same function; to even out skin tones and to absorb oil. However, they both have their advantages and disadvantages.

My personal preference is using loose powder. Specifically Laure Mercier Loose Translucent Setting Powder. After foundation and concealer I pop a bit under my eyes, next to my nose, on my forehead and chin and leave it there for around 5-10 minutes. Otherwise known as baking. Then after I have finished the rest of my makeup, I will sweep it off with my Real Techniques Setting Brush, and it will leave my face looking more flawless and prevents my makeup from creasing. However, because loose powder contains more oils than compressed powder, it can leave the face looking a tad cakey on oily parts of the face.

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Compressed powder has its advantages as it’s practical due to it being easily portable. It tends to come in a small, compact container that can easily fit into your handbag, like the infamous Rimmel London Stay Matte powder. This therefore means touchups are easier with compressed powder. Whereas loose powder is an absolute nightmare to take with you as it is so fine and powdery! Even when i’m applying it at my dressing table I still manage to leave a small trace of white powder all over the surface, which is a tad annoying. Plus, when i’m applying the powder on my face I end up in a white, powdery haze for a few seconds. (But that might just mean I use too much)

Compressed powder is more suitable for those who only apply a few products on the face as it gives a less heavier coverage if using it with a brush. Plus the application time is also a lot more rapid than loose powder. Simply swirl your brush in the compressed powder and pat it into the skin.Whereas with loose powder I find it takes more time due to the fiddly application. But, I have found that loose powder definitely gives the best results. I’ve tried many compressed powders over the years and they have never had the same effect as the loose powder that I use everyday.

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With loose powder, I find it leaves my chin looking as though my foundation has gone to the surface of my skin and it’s really smeary. Whereas loose powder keeps my foundation intact for the whole day. It’s also a bonus for those with bad eye circles as it gives more coverage, which means it cancels them pesky blue tones out!

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Do you know of a really good compressed powder or loose powder I should try?

Much Love,

Ellen Grace X

 

 

Signs That You’re Addicted to Makeup

Makeup… to your average girl it’s just something that you apply as part of your daily routine at the beginning of the day. You flick a bit of mascara on your lashes and head out the door, rushing to tend to your daily routine. However, to makeup lovers, applying your makeup everyday is the most satisfying thing. Particularly if you’re trying out a new product for the first time, slowly pulling away the packaging and opening up that bad boy for the first time is one of the most pleasant feelings. Although you’re too scared to touch the product in case you ruin the perfect embellishment. (Or is that just me being weird?)

You know you’re obsessed with all things makeup when you wake up and look forward to applying your daily makeup. It’s not seen as a chore, instead it’s a time to make yourself look and feel that extra bit better. The thought excites me that my face is a blank canvas and I can paint it how I want, with the colours and brands that I desire.

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(Taken from Google images)

You know you’re obsessed with makeup when you come home for the day and spend hours aimlessly flicking through Youtube watching all the makeup tutorials under the sun, or learning how to do a new tip or technique on how to get the best colour combo with your Naked 2 Palette, or even watching reviews on something you desire to buy. It’s so great just reading about makeup and looking up other people’s opinions on it.

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You know you’re obsessed with makeup when you can easily spend hours on your favourite brands’ website looking at the new arrivals, or in any drugstore skimming the rows and spending far too long swatching lipsticks onto your hand, trying to find that perfect shade.

You know you’re obsessed with makeup when you look at your entire collection and realise you’ve probably spent equivalent to a years worth of rent on a house. (That sickens me a bit) But then you look at your highlighter collection and you feel that little bit better as you know every penny you’ve spent is worth it.

You know you’re obsessed with makeup when you have way too many of the same product. I hoard makeup so much, it’s awful. But there’s still a little bit of product still left in that £20 concealer pot and I know I will use it.. eventually. (Among the other twelve stacked up in my drawer!)

You know you’re obsessed with makeup when you have 7 of the same mascaras that promise to do the same thing, or 8 dupes of the same Nude shade, (but they’re all slightly different, right?) It’s the same thing every time you buy another makeup item, that when you’re in the process of buying that blusher you know you have 5 others at home that do the same job, but you promise yourself that this one is that little bit different.. Plus it’s high-end so it’s bound to be the best.. right?

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You know you’re obsessed with makeup when you self-consciously look at other people when they’re talking and you think how you would of done their makeup. *I would love to blend your eyeshadow in just that little bit more* or *You just need to add your eyeliner up, that gap is really annoying*… etc. It’s a bad habbit but it just happens.

What signs do you have that shows you’re a makeup addict?

Much Love,

Ellen Grace X