Monday, 30 November 2009

Pale or Yellow?

As you know I've been very busy with coursework so I haven't had any time to upload videos or anything.....let alone make any videos.  But I've got a lot in my mind that I'm afraid will eventually disappear and I'll forget to mention it so I need to quickly tell you guys!

I've recently had this new revelation in terms of my skin tone. Now being oriental Asian I know, and we all know, there are a different shades within our 'yellow' skin. 

You can either be a 'pale white' yellow like Sammi Cheng

Or more mid-yellow tone like Zhang Ziyi

All of which are natural.  That's why with the Missha BB Creams you'll get two shades of 'yellow' and thats why even though my sister and I are both related (obviously) we have different skin tones; her being more yellow toned and mine a more pink/white undertone. 

This isn't the more fantastic example but its the only one at hand: 

This is a picture of my brother in law, my sister, my mum and I when we were in Austria on a skiing holiday.  It's the better example I suppose because none of us have make up on (because who does that on holiday?!) but if you can see, I naturally am a bit more paler and my sister is more yellow. So needless to say I get the whiter pale from my mum and my sister gets darker skin from my dad's side of the family.  Hence why she is No.23 for BB cream and if I used No.23 it makes me brown. 

Now here is my dilemma.   What happens in the summer?  I tan like there is no tomorrow the moment the sun comes out, if the sun says hello, my skin just browns up like a turkey in an oven.  So that's annoying because I sat at my vanity table the other day and realised a lot of my foundations are not right.....AGAIN! 

So from now I'm going to have to separate my foundations (winter ones, summer ones) and it's interesting because there is a significant jump.  Let's talk MAC coding colours... in the winter I'm possibly a NC15 - NC20 and in the summer I could jump to a NC25-30.  This all depends so it's hard for me to find a good one. 

Also the reason why I began thinking this is because I was watching Gossmakeupartist recently and in his video he suggested that a woman should match her foundation to her chest - which makes so much more sense.  I've ALWAYS had this trouble with match my body because like a patchwork quilt, my body parts all different shades.  My face is darker than my legs and torso, yet my arms are always darker. 

The question is, what shade am I and what shoulder I go for?

I've decided that I'm more leaning towards the whiter pale shade a la my good friends Suzi and Lindy as opposed so my other darling friends Ling and Tiffany.

So I'm kind of in between which bugs me.  But if I look at my natural skin, once my tan has gone (which it has), I am very white, very pale (you must have noticed) and I should embrace that.  And rather than my face and chest being a different colour, I will work towards being all a whiter shade.  I used to use a more yellow toned foundation and if my chest was on show I would dust it with bronzer but now I think I will keep me one shade.  So thanks Gossmakeupartist for this revelation! lol!

Sorry, such a trivial post but I had to get it out there! 

What's your purpose?

Hello everyone!

It's not often that I write much about anything personal on this blog but I've long stopped writing at my personal blog because it reminds me too much of all the things that hurt me.  But I've been craving to write personally for a while because it's been a an addiction since I was a young girl.  Writing about feels really help me to de-clutter what's in my brain, sometimes I have so much in my head the thoughts begin to overlap one another and some are forgotten and somee keep springing to mind. 

So here is a new beginning to a new section for this blog: Helen's Hideaway

You know I've been constantly thinking to myself about where life is taking me.  To be honest these thoughts have been in my mind for a since I was a little girl; from a young age I've pondered on my purpose and wondered about my future.  I used to always ask myself "Why me?" and I didn't understand what the question meant but it wasn't referring to why bad things happen to me.  I was  more asking Why I've been put on this Earth?  
I guess before it wasn't so much of a question with a deeper meaning, just curiosity and confusion.  If I ask the same question now I would be asking what my purpose is and what I can do in this life to really make a difference.

For all that know me, knows that my 'general' goal is to help save the world.  I believe in some ways that I was given the heart I have for a reason and I know these hands are not just for eating and apply make up.  Forget the question of what I want to do with as a job....what is my purpose? 

I think I hit a certain point around college time when I realised what I was good at and what were my limits.  I understood that being an 'all rounder' that sky is my limit so as long as I push myself.  I didn't think I had much talent in anything that I loved and I don't excel in much either.  But then again I don't do badly in much.  I looked deep within and found that actually probably what the Big Guy above gave me was a good heart and a good soul.   My job is to help others and no matter what I do, I will do it.  I know that truthfully there are no limits to what I can achieve, I just have to really want it and do it.  I know that no matter what I do in life, I will be helping people smile one way or another. 

I recently watched a video of a favourite guru and her name is Elessa AKA Pursebuzz.  Pursebuzz was the first make up guru I ever watched and I was instantly hooked on her talent but more so her warm heartedness.  She recently uploaded a video talking more about herself, her job, her life and what she's been through.  I know a lot of people will say this but I really felt like I understood her and everything that came out of that beautiful mouth was easily what was already in my brain. 

Then it hit me ... this is what she has achieved....I can do it too. 

My purpose in life is to share, to touch others hearts and to change the world for the good, bit by bit.

What's yours?

Friday, 27 November 2009

Why Fresh Faced is sometimes the Best Face

Have a nice day everyone :)

Magnets for my Pro Palette!

For some of you who may be interested, I wanted to quickly show you the magnets that I purchased.

These were bought to stick onto the back of the pans of my MAC eyeshadows which I depot to put into my MAC pro palette!  So they are adhesive and come in a sheet 80 and they are 297 x 198 x 0.76mm in dimension.  These as fantastic and you can even use them to stick on photos to put on your fridge, or use them as clasp if you're making a note book creative, these are much more versatile than you'd think.

Above is a picture of two metal pans; the one of the left is Humid which already has a magnet as I bought it as a refill.  To the right is my own metal pan eyeshadow with one of the magnets on it and as you can see it fits perfectly :)  And now my eyeshadows will not fall out and smash onto the floor. Yay!

I bought these magnets from First4magnets and right now it's buy one get one free. These magnets cost me £2.99 for a sheet which apparently works out to be less than 4p per magnet but I guess if you're buying one and getting one free it should be like....2p per magnet....HOW CHEAP!

So yeah for all you lovely people who want to make up their pro palettes and still haven't found any you go.  I'll be looking into labelling my palettes real soon too.  Watch this space.

Helen x

PS. delivery was super quick, came within two days or so!

Thursday, 26 November 2009

MAC Pro Palettes, MAC Eyeshadow, Spot attack + Stackers HAUL

One of the things I've been thinking about for a long time is buying the MAC palettes.  I've watched youtube gurus for a long time and you'll find A LOT of them (I suppose I can say, us, now) have palettes despite the majority not being make up artists or even in the industry.  Apparently a love for make up is a cause for palettes. 
Actually to be honest I've always wanted them, if not for the fact that it's easier to transport and see, therefore I use them more often, it's because it's my version of a sticker book or a stamp album.  I suppose it gives me a chance to look a bit flashy as well and it'll be something the girls will say "ooh" to when they drop by and have a look through my vanity table. 

I went into the MAC store on Fouberts Place in Soho (possibly my favourite one in Central London) where they sell Pro Mac Products too.  I purchased THREE palettes that hold 15 shadows.  I'm not sure why but I expected them to be a lot bigger but actually love the size they are. 

I also purchased two Mac Eyeshadows.  I haven't bought a MAC eyeshadow in a long time.  I actually only originally had four.  I've decided to start collecting them and one by one I would like to have one of each.  Obviously I will need more palettes

The first colour I picked was Star Violet

This winter I am LOVING the reds/plums/mauves/wine colours and I can't wait to do a Christmas look with this colour.  It's so versatile and I bet I could use this on my cheeks!


Above is 'Humid'.  I love this soft spring green colour; it's just so warm yet refreshing.  I think I could definitely use this for a fun make up look.

Below are shots of the four colours I originally have and LOVE.

Chrome Yellow: The First Colour I EVER Purchased

Sushi Flower: The Second colour I purchased

Typographic: Not Sure why I didn't pick the tradition 'Carbon' but I liked this more

Sable: A convert because of Lollipop26 :)

I've decided to reaarange them in this order..the same sort of arrangements MAC stores have their shadows on display.  Once a palette is full up I will buy more and reaarange!  Right now I'm ordering some magnets to attack the pans into the palette and I'm yet to make their labels :)

Yellows; Oranges: Blues; Greens

Reds; Pinks; Purples; Whites

Nudes; Browns; Blacks; Greys

So, this will be lots more fun for the future.  YAY!

I've repurchased something for my spots - the lack of sleep is giving me spots again,.  This happens when I go to uni, I get stressed and my skin is horrific.  Hence why I LOVE summer holidays!

I absolutely love this product, for me it's worked very well in the past and if I didn't discover Lush's Grease Lightning, then I would be still using this.  But I think my spots are calling for something here's to clearer skin!

Right.  What are stackers?

A while ago I was in House of Fraser and noticed a stand with these 'Stackers'.  'Stackers' are basically beautiful stackable 'trays' that allow you to build your own jewellery box.  What's handy about this is the customisation and choice of compartments.  I love these more than a tradition jewellery box because I find they usually have compartments I never fill up or they are become very awkward.  I find these Stackers fuss free and I love the designs.   I can build these up and make a tower (eventually) or I can lay them flat in pull out drawals.  You can get them in various colours (Baby blue, Pink, White and Brown).  Originally I wanted to get White but where I was, there weren't the right variations of trays I wanted and the only one which did were the browns (which was my second choice).  Usually I'd wait or go to another store or even go online to buy it but House of Fraser had 20% off of them so I bit the bullet and bought them.  I've actually been pining over these for weeks now! 
Originally I was looking for a jewellery box, then I moved into the idea of a jewellery stand but neither of them sat well in my mind.  Then hallelujah, this happens!  Yay!  Each box costs between £12-£18 depending  on type. 
I've been needing something like this....I actually have a lot of jewellery but alike my bobby pins and hair bands, I lose jewellery so easily because I just have a habit of putting them anywhere because they never had a place.  Most of my earrings were tangled up in a box and actually as I've gone through them... a lot of them were odd as the other one was missing (Yes, I'm a chaotic human being too).  So here's to starting over again with the jewellery collection :)

Isn't the coral lining just beautiful?

I'm still on the look out for a perfect purse/wallet.  I can't find any to my taste *cries*.

Also, some news!  I've been invited by Superdrug to enter their 'Get the look' competition.  I'm definitely going to enter...the prizes are ABSOLUTELY PHENOMENAL!  I can't wait.  I have to  make up a 'Christmas party' look.... any idea's people?  When I post it up I hope you guys will vote for me too :)  I'm sure this competition is only for UK residents only though :(  Click here for more information!  Wish me luck ^_^

Night everyone x

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Cherry's Morning Simple Skincare Routine Winter '09

For me, skincare is tenfolds more important than make-up.  The fact is that make up does not look good on bad skin and it can make your skin even worse.  Loving what nature gave you is important and that includes your body's largest organ - your skin.

Today I'm going to quickly go through what I use in the morning.  Looking at it, I have significantly decreased the amount of products I've been using and I think it's been doing my skin some good.  Besides what you're about to see I've also been doing well on my Weightwatchers journey and been eating healthily.  I've tried to sleep as much as I can but I think the key to good skin is being happy and relaxing as well as religiously cleaning day and night. 

Step 1: Cleanse
Why is it important to cleanse in the morning, especially if you cleansed before you slept?  This is because you can produce oil on your skin during the night as well as picking up dust and any unwanted bacteria during the sleep.  So a good clean in the morning will prepare you for the day and your skin will thank you for it.  I tend to use scrubs in the morning because it not only wakes me up but gives my skin a good flush and healthy glow. 
Right now I've reverted back to an old favourite, Neutrogena's Deep Clean Invigorating Scrub.

This scrub is particularly good for the morning as it has a great menthol feel to the skin.  It's exfoliating particles are part grainy and part beads and therefore gives a good balanced scrub.  I've recently been using this and letting my face soak in the product for a couple of minutes before I sleep.  The reason for this was because it would increase the menthol feeling so it would wake me up properly in the morning but I've foud since I've been doing this my skin has become softer; don't quote me on this but it might be the scrub - but probably not.

Step 2: Tone
Toning sweeps away any remaining cleanser from your face, balances your skin, calms it down and prepares it for moisturising.  I don't think I've used a product as continuously as I have with this one; the Botanics Rose Water Toner.

I adore this toner in every single way.  If you don't like the smell of roses, I would recommend two other toners I've listed below.  But definitely try this out if you can, it's absolutely fantastic and addictive.  I can't live without it and honestly calms my skin right down which has a tendency to flare up from many cleansers.

Other recommendations:

Simple's Soothing Facial Toner

Body Shop's Seaweed Clarifying Toner

Step 3: Moisturise
The key to any skincare regime is to moisturise.  The benefits of supple skin is monumental - and I'm not exaggerating.  When there is an inbalance within your skin you will get dry skin or break outs or redness - any imperfections is due to some sort of imbalance and that's moisture included.  You can even break out because of oily so don't be fooled into thinking you're safe if you have oily skin.  The fact is is that no matter WHAT skin type you are, you need to moisturise and feed what your skin needs.  I'm so in love with moisturising; my mother is in  her 50's and she honestly has the most gorgeous skin in the world and when I say it's soft, it's an understatement.  It's better than a baby's bottom, it's taut, glowing, soft, smooth and most of all - amazing for her age.  She is the type of woman who will never really need to wear foundation.  How has she achieved that?   She tells me its through religious moisturising and using as little products as possible.
Here are the three moisturisers I'm using at the moment.  All of them are amazing and totally recommended for dry/combination skin.  I'm currently using the latter A LOT and it's my current favourite.

The Egyptian Magic (4/5)

Embryollise Lait Creme Concentre (4.5/5)

Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Multi-repair cream (5/5)

Happy skin, everyone!

Music in corresponding YOUTUBE video:
~ Ceui - Centfolia (insturmental)
~ Azu ft Seamo - Jikan yo Tomare (karaoke)

Sunday, 22 November 2009

ELF Corrective Concealer, Complexion Perfection + HD Powder DEMO PICS

Hello everyone,

I wanted to show everyone how well some of the ELF Studio Line Products have been working for me, in particular, the Corrective Concealer, Complexion Perfection and HD Powder.

I've been using the Corrective Concealer from the moment I bought it which was about a week ago and I have been  really liking it a lot more than I expected.  The beige and nudes give decent coverage and the green and pink does a decent job and evening out my skin tone.

Below is a picture of what the nudes and beiges did as an undereye concealer as a lot of people will find this area the most problematic.

I have the corrective nudes around MY left eye - it is noticably lighter.

 Here I've applied the green concealer on the left side of my face, concentrating arounnd my nose and some on my cheeks.  I have also used the pink on my chin and on the surface of my nose.  As you can see from the top picture I have some marks on my nose from a 'incident' and below its been covered fairly well from the concealer.  So far, so good.

Next up is the demonstration picture of what the Complexion Perfection can do; I've used the pinks under my chin and around my eyes, also the yellow around the eyes as well as my cheeks, the green around my nose and blue I used to dot on top of any more visable scars.  What do you think?  (Don't forget, it's the left side which is supposed to be improving!  The right is just my bare face!)

Below I've used the HD powder on the left side of my face.  I took the powder puff and dabbed the powder around my face and used the ELF Studio Line Kabuki brush to STIPPLE the powder in.  The finishing results are a smooth, soft and matte complexion.  Voila!

 So note:  This whole look uses ZERO foundation - isn't that amazing?  Or is it just a waste of time?  I kinda of like that it uses less foundation - actually because of this my skin feels lighter and less caked - how wonderful :)

Fun fun I've also done half a made up face and half bare - Yes, I expose what Mama gave me!

Below:  in case you're interested, my finishing look of the day:

Other products used:

~ Lancome Kohl Pencil
~ GOSH White eyeliner
~ GOSH Amazing Length n Build mascara
~ Benefit Browzing (Dark)
~ ELF studio line blusher/bronzer duo
~ ELF studio line blusher in Berry Merry
~ Maybelline Colour Sensational lipstick in Galactic Mauve
~ Maybelline lipgloss in Frosted Melon

Offers until 21st Dec 2009
Go to  to purchase now!

Music info for corresponding Youtube Video is:

Song 1 ~ Maaya Sakamoto ~ Platinum (karaoke)
Song 2 ~ Utada Hikaru ~ Beautiful World (Karaoke)
Song 3 ~ Azu ft Seamo ~ Jikan yo Tomare (instrumental)
Song 4 ~ Big Bang & 2NE1 ~ Lollipop (instrumental)

Friday, 20 November 2009

BENEFIT DISCOUNT! 15% off! 4 Days Only! Hurry!

Get 15% off your entire order . Enter promo code BENE4DAY at checkout. Terms and Conditions: Offer valid until 22/11/09, not valid with any other offers, subject to availability, while stocks last.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

ELF Studio Line Haul - Initial Mini Reviews

Welcome back everyone to yet another haul!  I can't believe I just bought more things for myself, with Christmas running up very soon I should not be buying things for myself but for the ones I love.

Who am I kidding?  Retail therapy is the best policy, no?

I decided since I haven't had a chance to and now I can, I would go out and buy some things from the ELF studio line.  For those who don't know (although I'm sure the majority of you are aware) ELF ( is a brand dedicated to bringing out good value make up and cosmetics product that does not compromise on good quality.  It's had sensational success over the last year or so and for good reason.  I've bought a lot from ELF before but not yet their studio line, I was intrigued from the moment I heard of it last year and now am glad to be able to try out some of their products.  I didn't go all out and buy everything but a bit of some things just to see what the quality is like.  No doubt if I love it I will go back for more.

Before I begin I must mention their ELF have incredible customer service; they dispatch and ship very quickly and what's amazing is that they have great communication with their customers.  Don't ever feel afraid to purchase from them. 

The first item (and probably the most anticipated) is their High Definition Powder.  Personally I've never bought anything that is supposedly HD just because I've never seen the need for it, especially at the usual sky high prices.  However when I saw this on the ELF website I was quite quick to snap this up just to see what it was like.  I especially wanted to get it as Natalya from Filthygorgeousmakeup recommended it.

Initial thoughts:  I love this so far, it gives my skin a velvety finish and really has kept shine at bay.  It sets my make up beautifully and gives me a very even complexion. I  used this next to a mineral foundation powder and found that it gave just as good coverage - not bad for something stark white.  Love it.

The next item I purchased is their Complexion Perfection powder compact which contains four different coloured powders, all to counteract imperfections on the skin.  Typically the yellow and pinks will be for dull and dark areas whilst the blue and green shall be for red blotchy areas of the skin.  It's not often that you see coloured powdered as you're more likely to see different coloured solid concealers or creams.  I have come across a few yellow coloured powders (i.e. Clinque, Benefit) but I am particularly happy yet suprised to see pinks and blues.  I was very excited to get this because it's so different and looks really convenient to use.

Initial thoughts:  I am in love with this compact.  Sometimes I wonder whether I'm actually imagining the results but I really do love it.  I follow Natalya's advice and use the pink mixed with the yellow for my undereyes and it really does help brighen that area.  I even think the green powder helps out my red blotches around the nose area and that shocks me because I've never really bought into the idea of green concealers let alone a powder.  I'm not quite sure about the blue yet but I am yet to do further testings.  So far, so good.

The next product is their Contouring Blush and bronzing powder which is often compared to Nar's Orgasm and Laguna.  I think the colour pairing is beautiful and you can see from the swatches that the pigmentation is very good.  I was happy to get this simply because it seemslike a good idea to have a duo and the packaging is very pretty.

Initial thoughts:  I love the colour pay-off, it's extremely decent for the price and the packaging is uber sleek.  The colours itself are wonderful but I find it quite odd how there is only one you can choose from rather than a few selections of duos.  It would be nice if they could do a highlighting peach with a lighter bronzer.  Either way I don't regret getting this and is easily recommendable to those who can't afford NARS but want a piece of the glamour.

As I am concealer mad I went out of my way to get another set of concealers.  This is their Corrective Concealer palette and I was very interested to get this simply because it, again, it seems so convenient and practical.  I like the array of colours you get.  I think it seems even more appealing that you could use the Complexion Perfection on top of these and then you can use minimal amount of foundation - just a thought.

Initial thoughts:  I am quite liking these concealers although I was hoping they would be creamier in consistency.  In terms of coverage I think they do just fine, espeically the beiges and nudes.  So far I'm not so hot on the green but I do like the lilac, it does its job in highlighting and brightening up shadows on the face.  So far I've been using it with a concealer brush but I will have to see if fingers work better - I'm not quite sure a brush is the best way to go about using this. 

Now I've finally got my hands on a kabuki brush that doesn't break the bank.  I have always wanted a quality kabuki brush but it just seemed like a brush that isn't particular necessary and is always very pricey.  Finally ELF comes out with a quality kabuki and I am ready to go.  The bristles are not as dense and you would think but is dense enough.  It says to give a medium/full coverage and the bristles itself are incredibly soft and luxurious.

Initial thoughts:  When used on the face it does not irritate but give a wonderful finish.  It's great at picking up mineral powder and very good in terms of size.  It's easy to use and great value for the quality.  I love this kabuki and am so glad I didn't fork out three times the price for another brand but waited for this one.  Definitely recommended for kabuki virgins and for those who just do not want to shell out their weeks lunch money for a kabuki.

 Another brush I was dying to get was the Eye Contour Brus.  It's got very short yet soft taklon bristles and is used for pack on colour and create intensity to any eye look.  It can be used across the lid and lash lines and is good for creating dimension to your eyes.  I think it's a good brush to have in your pots and can be very versatile once gotten used to.

Initial thoughts:  What you see is what you get, a good quality brush which does its job.  There isn't much to say about a good brush apart from that I would now cry if i didn't have it; I see it as an integral part of my eye make up brush collection and not only do I love the look of it, I just find it incredibly useful - an overall good brush to have if you like detailed eye looks.

Alike the Kabuki, the Fan brush has been one of those brushes I've never thought to shell money out on.  The idea and concept is a good one but just never good enough for the price.  I'm glad ELF brought this out in their Studio brushes because it's cheap and cheerful.  This is used to fan away fall out from your eye make up and is used to fan on washes of colours to the cheeks. 

Initial thoughts: It's actually a very versatile brush to have and again it's one of those brushes I'm wondering why I didn't use before.  I am glad I waited for this one but am now wishing I had it earlier.  It's incredibly soft and picks up a lot more colour than you'd think.  I love this brush a lot and I think if you're not going to use it, have it in your collection as it makes you look fancy like you know what you're doing.

The next product I purchased is a funny one because I got it on a whim and in blind hope it would do something good.  I've never bought any brush cleansers before and have not looked into them as such.  I clean them fairly regularly with baby shampoo and usually I'm fine for a while.  As you may know, the MAC brush cleanser is quite pricey and to me doesn't seem that worth it.  This is an anti-bacterial brush cleanser than you can use daily on your brushes after use.  You spray the brush with the cleanser and then wipe excess onto a towel.  Basically this allows you to use your brushes throughout the week and then you can deep clean them once a week (this is my presumed strategy).  I loved that it is anti bacterial and that there is actually a lot of product for the price.  Not knowing what to expect, I use this with an open mind and full of hope.

Initial thoughts:  I'm not sure what I am supposed to expect.  Am I supposed to expect amazing cleaning results or is it something to clean off excess so you can use your brush again quickly?  Is it supposed to be stark clean?
Below are pictures, the first of the brushes dirty and the second of them as clean as I could make them.  It seems that the daily cleaner doesn't have any better cleaning skills than water does and I can only hope that it is as anti-bacterial as it says.  It also has a very artificial sweet smell that I'm not sure if I like.  I can't say that I hate this product as it means that I can now use my brushes more often without having to find an alternative brush if its dirty.  But then again surely somehow I could have made my own cleanser?  But at such a low price I don't think I'm going to complain too much - at least it's anti bacterial - I hope.

Hope you guys found some of that useful - tell me what you thn

Music info for corresponding Youtube Video is:

Song 1 ~ Maaya Sakamoto ~ Platinum (karaoke)
Song 2 ~ Utada Hikaru ~ Beautiful World (Karaoke)
Song 3 ~ Azu ft Seamo ~ Jikan yo Tomare (instrumental)
Song 4 ~ Big Bang & 2NE1 ~ Lollipop (instrumental)

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