Girls I wish were my B.F.F’s

Forget swooning over Adam Broody in re-runs of the O.C or drawing hearts around the members of 5ive in Shout magazine. These days it’s all about the Girl Crush. We all have one… or many; girls that we wish we could sit in our pjs, swap hair tips and fight over the last slice of pizza with. Here are some gals that I wish were my pals!

Pic: Pinterest
Pic: Pinterest

Lena Dunham

She speaks the weird and wonderful things that we all think but very rarely say out loud and I love her for it. I was obsessed with her first movie ” Tiny Furniture”, LOVE her T.V series “Girls” and now I adore her book too. She has taught me not to give a single shizz what people think and that it’s ok to wear dungarees in your 20’s… two very valuable life lessons I will take to the grave.

 

Fearne cotton
Pic: Pinterest

Fearne Cotton

I want her hair, tattoos and entire wardrobe. Fearne embodies effortless cool. I spend more hours than I care to admit, stalking her Instagram for style inspiration. Can we be sisters please?!

 

Pic: Pinterest
Pic: Pinterest

Oprah Winfry

Sometimes I feel that I’ve learned more from Oprah than I did at my 3 years at University. When I watch her show, I feel ALL of the feels and one day I hope to double high five her! She is the ultimate Idol.

Pic: Pinterest
Pic: Pinterest

Ellen De Generes

This women has gotten me through some very very stressful essays in college, taught me that dancing everywhere and anywhere is a MUST and that a pant suit can look pretty damn fly! She has one of the kindest souls out there and never underestimates the importance of a daily chuckle. I will spend my life wishing to be funny like her. ..and one day I will master that table manoeuvre!

Maybe if I wish really really hard I will become as funny as Ellen, as stylish as Fearne, as Wise as Oprah and as damn cool as Lena! Too much to ask for?!…

Things I’m learning in my Twenties…

So I’m approaching 25. How did that happen? I blinked and was suddenly submerged into grown-up ish life. School is well and truly over but I find that I’m learning more than ever! Here are some things that I’ve learned now that I’m in my Twenties:

Tea pic

– Tea fixes 90% of your problems. NOT vodka.

– Oversized/ slouchy clothes don’t always make you look cool & effortless but sometimes just plain frumpy and messy. Dress for your size and not just for fashion.

– I’m secretly proud that I was a little strange in school. All those “quirky” anecdotes make for handy discussion points during awkward silences and for sharing on Twitter…

– Feeling “pretty” doesn’t solely relate to how many layers of foundation you can apply.

Why? Just why?!
Why? Just why?!

– All those years being a sulky Emo has really helped me out with my eyeliner game. Cat-flicks are a breeze now!

– I get paid and rush out to buy a fancy blender and a stack of books. (Yes, this happened this weekend). Gone are the days of Topshop splurges and mid-week shots at Diceys.

– I’ve started to get cranky on public transport. Is it too much to ask for a seat to myself and for those kids to PIPE DOWN!!

– I no longer need to announce every life event on Facebook with the help of Blink 182 lyrics. *insert embarrassing flashbacks*

college pic

– Food shopping has taken on a whole new process. It’s more structured involving lists and making sure I have a balanced diet rather than ” What will provide the most soakage for that Bacardi breezer?!”

– All those years smirking at my Mum… but NOTHING feels better than clean bed sheets! NOTHING!

– Bitching just isn’t really a thing anymore… except at certain times of the month when it’s pretty much not even your fault anyway.. right?!

– I’ve started using the phrase “Oh Remember when!..” Might as well embrace the crossword puzzles and orthotics already so!

– The default ringtone on my phone is just fine! I no longer feel the need to have personalised ringtones for each contact on my phone which I update regularly depending on my mood.

college pic 2

– Going out for midweek drinks could be fun.. but you do have that episode of Orange is the new black to watch and that salad you bought yesterday goes off today so you should probably eat it.

Yes things are well and truly changing and I for one can’t decide if I want to smile or cry about it. Oh the joys of growing up…

The “Just incase” Bag

One of my best qualities (or flaws) is that I hate to be under prepared for anything. I dread being without something, turning up empty-handed, being under or overdressed, the list really does go on. To combat this, I always have a “just in case” bag in no matter what handbag I carry.  What is this, you may wonder? Well… it’s my version of the Mary Poppins bag… but much teenier. Here’s a few items I like to have at hand:

Beauty necessities

  • This works deep sleep stress less rollerball; Let’s just say that I have a slight tendency to get a little stressed every now and again. This little guy won’t cure your stress completely but it will help you deal with the situation with a clearer head. Roll a little on your wrist or behind your ear as often as needed. This also doubles up as a perfume!
  • La Roche Posay Cicaplast lip balm: Come rain or shine, dry lips are the one constant here in Ireland. I’ve tried so many lip balms, but none as good as this gem at soothing my lips.
  • Bright lipstick- You know that day when one drink after work turns into multiple drinks? You can turn any outfit from day to night with a bright lip. A classic red is always a safe choice. MAC’s Russian red is a firm favourite and goes with pretty much everything. You cannot go wrong.
  • Soap & Glory Hand Maid hand gel: Living in the city has turned me into someone I never wanted to be; a germaphobe. I use public transport pretty much every day and I don’t feel at ease unless I have Soap & Glory’s hand maid at hand to banish any nasties. This is one of the nicest smelling hand gels around and sinks in instantly! I’d also recommend The Body shop‘s hand gel range if you are looking for a more natural solution.
  • Kirby grips: Because c’mon, who doesn’t have one of these lying around?!

What items do you carry around just incase?

Lush D’Fluff Shaving Soap; My Thoughts!

Lush D'Fluff shaving soap review

Let’s be real here, there are some parts of the beauty world that are perhaps not the most “beautiful”. I personally throw hair removal into this category. Hair removal is not only a chore but also a little dull, however, we all have armpits and most of us like to keep them hair free! The dilemma starts when we turn to the method used to do this. I prefer shaving and therefore struggle on a constant basis to find the right shaving cream. For years, I’ve bought “sensitive” range shaving foams from the drugstore, never really being quite happy with them but they kind of did the job so I continued to re-purchase. My skin was always left feeling irritated and a little sore after shaving making the whole process not only a chore but also something a little painful!

*enter Lush to answer all of my prayers*

What’s so great about it?

Here’s where I’ve been going wrong all these years; shaving foams/ soaps actually dry out your skin which in turn worsens irritation. *Slaps self on forehead*  Despite being labelled a soap, D’Fluff is nothing at all like a soap and in reality more like a rich cream. Because of this, the formula coats the skin rather than dries it out and doubles up a moisturiser. No more irritation for my poor pins, Hurray!

In terms of the scent, it’s pretty mild and not too overpowering and it leaves your bathroom smelling amazing, which in my books is always a plus!

The tubs may look a little small, but just the teensiest bit goes a long way. Getting to know the right amount to use is definitely a learning curve, but once you’ve got the knack, even the smaller pot will last you up to a month!

I’ve been using this bad boy for over a month now and since then I have had no nasty shaving burn, no irritation and my skin has been smoother than ever! Something I thought i’d never be saying about a shaving product!

Lush D'Fluff shaving soap review

So what’s in it that makes it so good, eh?…

In true Lush style, this product contains an array of general loveliness:

  • strawberries; contains natural fruit acids to exfoliate and help get rid of dead skin.
  • rosehip oil; rich in vitamin C helping to restore the skin after the shave
  • cocoa butter; acts a rich moisturising agent that stops the skin from drying out
  • free range egg whites; clings to the hairs to help with a closer shave
  • golden syrup; works in conjunction with the egg whites for a quicker more precise shave
  • coconut oil; more and more moisturising benefits!

Yes, these all sound like ingredients of a delicious cake more so than a shaving cream, but I promise, they really do work! And no, you can’t eat it! (trust me!)

Would I buy it again?

Yes! I originally bought the smaller size as I was dubious to its claims..however, I’ve already made a note in my mental shopping list to grab the bigger size!.. it’s just THAT good!

Beautiful little bargain; Essence Lipstick

Essence long lasting lipstick in 01 Coral calling

While it’s all fine and dandy to trawl the floors of Brown Thomas and Space Nk, drooling over stunning Chanel and YSL lipsticks, nothing quite beats a bargain! On a recent Pennys (Primark) trip, I picked up something from the Essence long-lasting lipsticks collection in “01 Coral Calling”. It cost me €1.79 and my expectations were low. Oh boy was I wrong!

Firstly, the pigmentation is so impressive for such an inexpensive brand. The formula is soft and buttery and feels more like a lip balm on the lips. The finish is beautiful; somewhere in between a matte and a shine, it’s perfect for Spring! In terms of durability, it probably isn’t the greatest BUT it fades gracefully and doesn’t leave any odd stain lines. I’m so impressed that I’ve mentally pencilled in another trip to try out some more shades!

Just goes to show that you should never just a lipstick by its’ price tag eh?!

Earth Month #2: Reducing beauty product waste!

How many of you are guilty of throwing away a half empty mascara in that tempting lure of a new one? I know I, as a beauty blogger, am very guilty of wasting products. My make-up stash is infested with countless  half used powders, once loved lipsticks, lonely dabbled in eyeshadows .. the list is endless! Enough is enough and in the spirit of Earth Month, I’ve decided to take ownership of this and promise myself to be better and more aware of the waste I am creating. Below are a number of simple tips on how to get the most out of your products.

1) Use tube ringers: Often most waste is caused by poor packaging design. There is nothing more frustrating than that little bit of product that you just can’t reach! Tube ringers are the solution to this problem! You can buy them very cheaply on Ebay, Amazon. And lots of DIY & homeware stores.

Source: Pinterest.com
Source: Pinterest.com

2) De-pot: Broken packaging can often hinder our use of a product. If you smash a compact or have a grubby lipstick, why not de-pot instead of throwing the whole product away? I find travel kits very useful for this. Plenty of pharmacies and supermarkets sell these. You could also use them to store your own home made DIY beauty products. (more of that, in my next Earth Day post!)

Source: Eaglecreek.com
Source: Eaglecreek.com

3) Recycle packaging- Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. We are taught this mantra from a very young age and there’s no reason why this can’t be applied to our beauty products! Lots of beauty brands these days offer a recycling reward system where you can bring old packaging back to the store and receive a free gift/reward in exchange It’s a great way to do your bit of recycling, reduce waste and you get a little something too! Win win! Fancy some examples?

Lush fresh face masks

  • Khiels: Return one full sized product and receive one stamp on a loyalty card. 10 stamps gets you a free gift. ehttp://www.kiehls.com/Recycle-America/recycle-america,default,pg.html
  • Lush: bring 5 clean pots back- get a free fresh face mask
  • MAC: bring back 6 containers and get a free lipstick

Back to MAC MAC cosmetics free lipstick

4) Buy refillable or package free products; Most of the time, you are paying for the packaging of a product. However, if you have the packaging already; why should you pay for it again?  Buying refillable products can be better for your bank account and is a great way to reduce waste! Even better, you could always buy package-less products! Lush do an amazing selection of these!

What measures do you take to reduce the waste in your beauty stock? Let me know in the comments below! 🙂

Chocolate Beauty Products

While everyone is busy stuffing themselves silly with chocolate this weekend, I thought I’d research some chocolate treats that we can enjoy not only in our tummies!

1) Cupcake fresh face mask from Lush:

Cupcake fresh face mask from Lush
PIC: Lush.com

 

Oh, the clever clogs over at Lush are so good at knowing what we want! Fancy a mask that will make you feel great, get rid of spots AND that smells like chocolate? Well, they have you covered with this cupcake face mask! Leave in the fridge, and add a dollop of this sweet stuff to your face once a week or when your face needs it!
2) Chocolate Mint lip balm from The Handmade Food Company

PIC: handmadesoapcompany.ie
PIC: handmadesoapcompany.ie

Want a chocolate fix but you don’t want to commit to the calories? Spread some chocolately goodness on your lips instead. This mint chocolate flavoured one from The Handmade Company is delicious and fresh at the same time.
3) Cocoa Butter Body Butter from The Body Shop:

PIC: thebodyshop.ie
PIC: thebodyshop.ie

The Body Shop never get it wrong when it comes to sweet smelling products and their cocoa butter range is no exception. My personal favourite is the Body Butter. It’s thick, sinks in quick and will have you smelling good enough to eat all day long!
4) Palmers Cocoa Butter Rich Shampoo:

PIC: feelunique.om
PIC: feelunique.om

Chocolate! In your hair?! Yes, you heard me! The classic Palmers brand have incorporated their cult favourite cocoa scent into a shampoo. This bad boy is a rich formula so it would be great for a once a week job.
5) Bourjois Chocolate bronzer:

PIC: asos.com
PIC: asos.com

Probably the best known chocolate scented product around. Coveted by beauty bloggers worldwide for the past few years, not only does this bronzer look like a little chocolate bar, it actually smells like one too. While it may come across as a gimick, this bronzer definitely lives up to the hype. It’s the perfect bronzer to sweep over the face or for contouring and the pigmentation is very impressive.
6) Too Faced Chocolate Bar eye shadow palette:

PIC: sephora.com
PIC: sephora.com

Look how god’am beautiful this palette is and imagine how cute it would look in your make-up stash? This one caught my eye a couple of months ago and my mouth has been watering for it ever since! 16 cocoa powder infused powders, both shimmer & mattes ranging from soft pinks to dark browns, there’s literally a shade for everybody and every occasion!

Now, what are you waiting for? Go smother yourselves in chocolate! 🙂

Earth Month #1; Eco-friendly brands

We are bombarded by beauty products day in and day out; on tv, in shops, in magazines etc. We slather them on our faces, pat them on our bodies and smooth them through our hair, often without even knowing what is really in them. A large majority of the time, the products we use are packed full of chemical and preservatives … that are not only harmful to ourselves but also the earth. As it is Earth month, I think it’s only fitting that we all make a greater effort to be more concious with the brands we use. I’ve been doing a little research myself on some Eco-friendly brands that we can start to introduce into our lives and I’d love to share my findings with you!

1) The Body Shop: http://www.thebodyshop.ie/

PIC: thebodyshop.com
PIC: thebodyshop.com

This brand makes no secret of their ethics. A brand that most of us are very familiar with. Most famously known for their “beauty with heart” campaign. 100% cruelty free and work hard to banish animal testing worldwide with their year-round campaigns and petitions. In 2012 they launched their first sustainable “Pulse”store in london. Today there are over 800 stores worldwide. Each store has sustainable flooring and efficient lighting. They have set targets to meet in the next 5 years which include reducing their water consumption and the levels of waste to landfill. Three cheers for The Body Shop! I’m a huge fan of their body butters.. but then again, who isn’t?!

2) Lush: https://www.lush.co.uk/

PIC: yelp.com
PIC: yelp.com

How could I write an eco-friendly post without mentioning our friends in Lush. These guys constantly strive to make products that not only smell god dayum delicious but that are also friendly to the earth and its creatures.  Their eco-friendly ethics are endless and include being cruelty free and 100% vegetarian. All their products are handmade and they promote ethical buying. They also promote recycling with their packaging. Something that I’m going to discuss more in next weeks post. If you are new to Lush I suggest trying out my personal favourite; their fresh face masks!

3) Jurlique: http://www.jurlique.com/

PIC: zspace.com
PIC: zspace.com

Jurlique is a brand that from the ghekko has strived to produce a pure skincare range that is sensitive to both you and the earth. All of the ingredients used in their products are free from synthetic chemicals, pesticides, herbicides and insecticides. They pick all of these ingredients by hand and on top of this, they are cruelty free and only test on consenting humans! (phew!) I have yet to try this brand but I have my eye on one of their serums already.

4) Aveda: http://www.aveda.com/index.tmpl

PIC: lifesalonspa.com
PIC: lifesalonspa.com

After researching about Aveda, I learned that these guys truly are the heros of the gang. Take a deep breath and be prepared to be impressed. Aveda pride themselves as being one of the first ever beauty companies using 100% post-consumer recycled PET. Any of their packaging containing plastic is derived from plants and they were the first privately held company to endorse the CERES (Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economics) Principles and the first beauty company to use wind power to manufacture their products. I could go on and on about the wonderful things they do but i’ll leave that to you. For now, take comfort in the fact that buying a product from Aveda is a great decision!

5) Tarte Cosmeticshttp://tartecosmetics.com/

PIC: twitter.com
PIC: twitter.com

Tarte pride themselves to be 100% cruelty free with a number of their products being completely vegan friendly. On top of this all of their products are free from chemical nasties. Unfortunately, this brand is not easily available here in Ireland which is a pity as it is probably one of the most beautiful looking make-up brands out there. Their blushes have already achieved cult status worldwide and I have heard amazing things about their foundation range. Please come to Ireland Tarte! Pretty please!

6) Eco Tools: https://ecotools.com/

PIC: cothailand.com
PIC: cothailand.com

Eco-friendly, easily available and cheap. These brushes are 100% cruelty free, synthetic brush head, bamboo handles, recycled aluminium ferrules.It doesn’t just stop with their brushes.. their packaging is also eco friendly. They use reusable pouches and recycled packaging.That’s the kind of thing we like to hear around these quarters. This year for earth month they are donating $1 from every Complexion brush sold to Global Green USA. That bunch deserve a great big pat on the back!

7) Pai Skincare: http://ireland.paiskincare.com/

PIC: naturisimo.com
PIC: naturisimo.com

Naturally derived ingredients approved by the soil association. All products are free from synthetic preservatives and chemical nasties. Their packaging is recycled where possible and they do not test on animals. I personally have a big interest in trying out this brand as it is specifically produced for sensitive skin.

8) Tata Harper: http://www.tataharperskincare.com/

PIC: sophieuliano.com
PIC: sophieuliano.com

Not only is their packaging green, but their whole ethos is too! They work to give us products that are 100% natural and non-toxic ingredients; free from chemical nasties. They buy renewable energy to run their facilities, they use recycled paper and packaging materials, recyclable glass bottles. If you are interested in finding out more, their site is a Mecca of interesting information!

9) Burts Bees: http://www.burtsbees.co.uk/

PIC: burtsbees.com
PIC: burtsbees.com

Hands up, who has had one of those delicious smelling lip balms of theirs at ones stage or another? Yes? Me too! But how often have we thought about the story behind Burt’s Bees. Their main idea is that all of their products are simple, natural and responsible. Zero waste to landfill policy. energy efficient lighting, they have achieved a Carbon Neutral certification and have returned huge percentages of their water usages to rivers such as the Colorado River.

 

Have you tried any of these brands? What’s your favourite Eco-friendly brand?

L’Oreal Infallible 24hr Foundation; My Thoughts

L'Oreal Infallible 24hr foundation review and swatch

ANOTHER new foundation?! I hear you say! Yes, things are certainly getting a bit cray here at A Tiny Slice of Kate. Foundation is my new nail polish… in that I NEED everything new that comes out. I’m a regular user of the  L’Oreal cult classic “True Match” foundation but recently I thought I’d shake things up and try something new! *Enter the Infallible 24hr foundation*

What I absolutely love about L’Oreal products is that little bit of luxury you get even though they are more on the bargain end of the scale. The products usually live up to their claim and are reasonably priced.

L'Oreal Infallible 24hr foundation review and swatch

 

The Infallible 24hr foundation is a long-lasting foundation that promises to last 24hrs. First of all, who wears their foundation for 24 hours?! I certainly wasn’t dedicated enough to put this claim to the test but I can say that it did last all day long with no touch-ups and that’s good enough for me.

Often long-lasting foundations tend to feel quite heavy and glue-like on the skin. This foundation is different as they use a specially formulated hydraluron complex which is supposed to make it more comfortable to wear and not drying on the face. Like the “True Match foundation”, it glided easily onto my skin and blended in nicely. It didn’t feel heavy or cakey at all.

The finish is a subtle dewniess that really just looks like a natural glow on the skin, which is my favourite thing about this foundation.In terms of coverage, I would say that it’s medium to high and extremely buildable. The teensiest dab really goes a long way. Due to the high coverage level, I found that I didn’t really need any concealer, just a little under my eyes and I was done!

My only gripe that I had with this foundation is it’s shade range. Like most drugstore cosmetics, this foundation offers a very limited colour range. I found it hard to find a shade that would suit me properly. After about 15mins of swatching, I chose the shade 125 Natural Rose, however if I’m honest I would say it’s a little too dark for me. Something to bare in mind when you are trying it.

L'Oreal Infallible 24hr foundation review and swatch

I guess now it all comes down to that big question; do you need it? Overall this product gets a big thumbs up from me. I feel like it’s a great daily foundation that could carry you into the evening and night if needs be. It’s awesome for anybody who wants a long-lasting foundation but with a dewy finish.

It retails for just under 15 euro and is found in all good L’Oreal stockists.

Budget Beauty; Beauty products from your kitchen

DIY Beauty No matter if we want to admit it or not, we all like to be pampered. These days there’s spas, beauty salons and hundreds of beauty aisles in our local stores. There are endless “pamper products” but what we often forget is that we have an array of natural beauty products right at our fingertips.. in the last place you’d expect… our kitchens. Below is a small list of a couple of natural ingredients that you can use to pamper yourself on a budget!

Natural beauty DIY beauty Budget beauty

– Cucumber: Does anybody remember being really young and thinking that when you grow up, part of being a woman would be to lie around with cucumber slices on your eyes? The first time I ever did it, I felt very special even though I had no idea what I was actually doing. The good news is that the cucumber actually does help! Cucumber acts as a soothing eye mask. They calm and cool the eye area and help to reduce any eye puffiness! I like to leave my slices in the freezer for about 5mins just to give them that extra kick!
Honey: There’s very little this bad boy can’t do. Not only is it delicious in your morning porridge it also works fabulously in a face mask. It’s PACKED with natural antioxidants and works at getting rid of nasty bacteria that can clog your pores.
Coffee: Homemade coffee body scrubs is something that blew up a lot last year and t something that I’m really starting to get on board with. Coffee, as we all know is great at waking you up in the morning, which is all down to the caffeine. Well it’s been found that caffeine can be good for your skin too! Using it in a scrub, the caffeine will stimulate your skin, stimulate blood flow and act as a natural exfoliator. AND on top of all this your shower will have that yummy coffee smell after! WIN WIN!
-Oats: We all have oats lurking somewhere in our cupboards and whether you love or loathe them, you can’t deny their numerous benefits to our bodies. Oats work as a calming agent both inside and outside of our bodies. Lots of the top skincare brands use oats in their products for just this reason. Whenever my skin is particularly irritated or sore, I mash up some oats, bananas and honey and lather it over my face. The hardest part is trying not to eat it after!
-Coconut Oil: Coconut oil had a bit of a moment in 2014, when everyone and their grandmother was shouting its benefits from the rooftops! Well, they weren’t wrong! There is no end to the list of uses for coconut oil from cooking to cleaning, it has it all. However, i find it best as a beauty product. Leave through the ends of your hair as an intense hair mask or Sweep over your skin after showering as a moisturiser. You’ll be left with the softest hair and skin and you’ll smell like a bounty as well! Wooh!

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