Welcome to One Brush Beauty

OBB Where all are welcome, i write reviews, answer questions, give tips and advice on how to use the makeup that you have. OBB is really about easy yet beautiful make up, making you feel your best, and what products are out there to help you do that.

C x

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Price Points - does expensive necessarily mean better?

Hey there!

Today I thought I might tackle an issue that I get asked about all the time. My friends comment on my makeup and ask me how much the products I use cost. In my makeup bag there is a definite mix of higher end to cheap drugstore products and the products that I continually use are the ones I love, and in the end, I have products that have cost me £1 that I prefer to the far more expensive counterpart.

For me it all comes down to (as it should) how well the product works for you. For me, my most expensive products are those that I use all over my face because I see this as caring for my skin. Cheaper foundations have a tendency to make me break out more than usual, dry my skin out and make it more oily - none of these things are appealing to me. Since I switched to a higher end product - I use Laura Mercier Oil Free Foundation - my skin has been better. The same goes for powder.

I have also recently switched to a high end mascara. I went from using possibly the worst mascara I have ever used (Loreals Million Lashes Mascara, which was like applying black powder to my lashes, it had so much fallout I ended up with more of it on my face than on my lashes) to the best mascara I have ever used (Lancome Hypnose waterproof). But my Mum only ever uses Maybelline mascara and she couldn't be happier - those products work for her, and she loves them.

The cheaper products that I love are usually eyeshadows and pencils, I also have some really great nail polishes from dirt cheap brands. The eyeshadows that I really love (due to the unparalleled pigmentation and longevity) are MUA cosmetics eyeshadows - theyre available from most Superdrug's here in the UK and theyre basic range (which features every single eyeshadow mono) is priced at £1 a product. I currently have a collection of their colours and use them probably more than any other. They have some really good MAC dupes as well, such as shade 11 which is an excellent likeness to the MAC blue/brown pigment.

I also really like Barry M dazzle dusts and glitters - theyre really well pigmented and you get a decent amount of product for your money. My favourite pigments from their range are Bare (a yellow gold dazzle dust) and Opal (a black and green glitter). And I cant mention Barry M without noting their waterproof eyeliner pens, if you havent checked them out yet, you really should!

I know people that wear nothing but expensive products, but look like theyre using the dirt cheap stuff, and people who use exclusively drug store brands and look amazing! I think the trick is to find a good mix, and play around with products until you find whats right for YOU. Its all well and good going on what someone else uses, but if it doesnt work for you then its not going to stay in your makeup bag.

Hope this has been helpful and a little bit of an insight to what I like to splurge on, and the products I consider a steal.


Monday, 22 August 2011

50's Look of the day!

Hi guys,

Here is a look that I've been trying out a lot recently, and incidentally a look that 1. A lot of A listers have been sporting recently and 2. Has been seen on a fair few cat walk shows recently.

The look that I've recently been sporting is the 'pin up/ 1950's' - flicked black eyeliner, red drawn lips and hair tied up with a bowed scarf as a head band.

As some of you may have noticed, I have changed my twitter picture, which is incidentally this look.

For those of you who havent seen my interpritation of this look, here it is,
Here I wore the look with a leopard print scarf and very defined eyebrows, but I think as long as you stick to the basics with this simple and sophisticated look then you can change it up as much as you like, maybe a nude or bright coloured lip and either play down or enhance the flick of the eyeliner - or my favourite thing to do is switch up the scarf, change the look to fit your outfit.

The look is really easy to achieve , make your eyeliner thicker as you approach the outer corner and extend to a flick (be this large or small), fill the lips in with a red liner (I use a khol pencil instead of lip pencil as it goes on smoother) and fill in with your fave shade of red, the red I'm wearing in this picture is MAC's 'Lady Danger' which is a matte shade.
For the hair, make a small quiff and tie hair up in a bun and then secure the scarf with bobby/ kirby pins and tie in a bow. And voilĂ  there you have it!

 Hope this was fun to read :)
Comment or tweet me telling me your current look!


Monday, 1 August 2011

Illamasqua eye pigment and liquid metal

Hi guys, sorry its been a while, Ive been so busy with work I havent really had time to sit down and write, even my book has been put on the back burner.
For those of you who follow me on twitter (@1brushbeauty) then you will know that I recently went to an Illamasqua store and purchased a couple of products.
For those of us here in the UK, there are very few Illamasqua counters around, I found one in a mall around 30miles from where I live. I took my mum who had never heard of the company before, but as soon as she saw the pigment counter she almost hyperventilated with excitement (yes the make up obsession must run in the family).

I chose the pure pigment in 'Ore' and the liquid metal in 'Phenomena' with the mind to use the liquid metal as a base and the pigment as a primary shadow colour.
Ore is a gorgeous golden brown, but unique to this shade, it has a certain something that you cant exactly explain. But I had never seen another product with this exact shade. Most of the pure pigments contain some glitter, but it is fine enough that you can wear it during the day.
Phenomena is the lightest silver liquid metal and is a silky cream pigment that is really dense with colour but has a lovely light silky application. It is a really cool shade that may appear to be a little daunting, but there is no reason that it would not suit all skin tones.

I wanted to give these products a chance before I reviewed them, as I find with some high end pigments all you pay for is the name and the product ends up being the same as a cheaper drugstore product.

I have been using phenomena the most out of the two products and I find its a wonderful highlight for the eyes (when used on the inner corners), it is such a universal colour that you can wear it with any eyeshadow look. I apply with my finger tips as this ensures the best products transfer and allows maximum control of the cream. The only negative I have to warn with this is that if you wear it all over your lids beware of creasing (although I dont really mind it creasing, and as it happens a glossy 'creased' eye is what many of the fashion show models have been sporting this season). The liquid metals make really good bases and add a subtle shimmer when applied lightly or a mind blowing intense molten look when applied liberally.

The pure pigment that I purchased was ore and this is a loose pigment powder. You can apply with a brush on its own which gives a light glow/sparkle but this method maximises fallout so be careful when applying to 'pat' the product in and not 'sweep' with your brush as you normally would. I have been wearing it with a mixing medium to wear as a crease colour and it works wonderfully. It has that golden tinge but can bring lovely warm olive tones out in your make up too. A great way to wear this is over a liquid metal, and this is slowly becoming one of my favorite day time looks.

All in all I highly recommend checking out Illamasqua, either at a counter or online, and products are really as they appear, they apply as the same colour as you see them (which is sometimes the most important thing). They are a little pricey however but, the liquid metals especially, are second to none, there is no product like them on the market.

As always if you have any questions or comments please leave them and I will try and respond accordingly. Please check out my twitter page and let me know if youve been reading my blogs, I would love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading, and until next time

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Emma Watson American Vogue Cover - Lip Look

Hey guys :)

First off I have to apologize for not posting in a while, my life has been pretty hectic moving around and seeing my friends (finally) after moving back home for summer.

On to the actual blog then. I was trailing around Boots the other day looking for lipstick, when I came across the Revlon counter. I suddenly remembered back to last months American Vogue shoot by Mario Testino with Emma Watson. The pale skin with that luscious dark glossy lip. The shoot featured various lip colours, but the one that stuck the most with me was the really dark plum/ cherry colour that I fell in love with. As it turns out Revlon have an amazing dark purple/red lipstick called 'Black Cherry' for creating this look (incidentally this lipstick is a perfect dupe for the new Estee Lauder pure colour lipstick in 'plum couture' which is £10 more expensive and far less pigmented.

To complete this lip look I first line the lips with a plum lip liner; I use Barry M's lip liner in 'plum' and then apply the Revlon lipstick and then top off with a thick layer of Revlons colourburst lip gloss in 'Bordeaux'.

To really be able to wear this look I suggest a pale skin, heavy brow and just mascara (if not with a nude brown shade on the eyelid just to warm it up a tad).

This look will be amazing in the coming Autumn and Winter Months and really suits us paler girls. Its right on trend and also wont break the bank.


Thursday, 16 June 2011

Laura Mercier Oil Free foundation review

Hi guys!
So as I have mentioned before I really do not have good skin, and so I am unable to use the cheaper brand foundations (which make me really break out). But I am also not a very loyal foundation buyer, I usually change every time as up until now there have always been issues with whatever brand I have used.

I mentioned a while ago that I had a make up haul, and the oil free foundation from Laura Mercier was one of the products that I bought. I am the shade 'Warm Ivory'.
Before this foundation I was using a Lancome Teint Idole Ultra one in their palest shade (which I have been told has been discontinued any way). The Lancome one was also an oil free foundation which my skin needs as I have combination skin. But the Lancome foundation was quite drying and its coverage (although the fullest coverage in their range, was not enough for my needs).

I had been pointed to Laura Mercier by a friend who assured me that the foundation was 'the best you will EVER use'. The colour matches my skin tone perfectly, I am very light with slight but not strong yellow undertones to my skin; usually I have to compromise on the colour and usually end up having to go a shade darker (or a shade with more yellow/ orange tones than my skin has) or in the case of the MAC foundation that I have used go a shade lighter which really made me look pale.
Even though the foundation is oil free it does not dry out, but has good staying power so that it doesnt 'slide' off my face either (another problem I had with the MAC foundation that I used).

The coverage is also brilliant, without making me look 'cakey'. Its a pump bottle and I only need one for really good every day coverage, which means that the bottle will last next to forever.

The one down side to this foundation is that it retails at £33 here in the UK, so it is by no means a cheap product. But I believe with foundations you really do get what you pay for, and I believe that 100% with this product; totally worth the splurge, especially when you consider its going to be sitting on your face all day every day.

So hope that was help full, maybe if you're thinking about changing your foundation or 'upgrading' from your drug store brand, I would definitely reccommend the Laura Mercier products. But as always, shop around and always go for the product that's right for you.


Wednesday, 15 June 2011

VOGUE! Beauty confidential cover lip dupe!

Hi guys!
If like me you're big into the seasons latest looks, both fashion and make-up then you probably read some kind of magazine. My big weakness is Vogue. I love it, even the adverts in it, I love picking ideas from the design houses latest campaigns and looking at the wonderful photography and marveling at the models.

As I live in England I have to buy British Vogue, and this months issue had another small magazine insert 'Vogue beauty confidential'. The cover of which features a sun-kissed Raquel Zimmermann looking fab (and rather late 70's/ early 80's chic). Immediately I fell in love with her lip look, a true red coral matte lipstick.

So I turn to the inside page to look up what lipstick it is. I find that its a matte Shisheido lipstick which would cost you £21 here in the UK, which is almost as much as the Chanel lipsticks. So I start looking for a cheaper dupe.

As any body who is even slightly in to makeup will know, Mac would be the first port of call, and indeed it was. And Bingo! I found the exact matte shade to match. Its a good £8 cheaper and even though its not drugstore cheap, I'm more willing to pay for what I know is quality.

The shade is so hot and on trend that even the Mac one has been hard to get hold of, I have finally managed to order mine today and will tweet some pictures when I get it delivered.

It really is the shade of the summer, I suggest that if you also go for this hot red coral lip, you team it with heavy brows and a nude eye...oh and plenty of bronzer to really bring out those golden coral tones!


Sunday, 5 June 2011

Best Powder EVER

So if you follow me on twitter you will know that I have recently splurged on some new make up products. I say splurged because I have recently come to think how much an investment my makeup is for me, I wear it everyday...all day. And for something that is in contact with my skin for that long, I need to make sure that the products I use are completely compatible with my skin, so that I'm not only looking after the way I look with my make up on, but off too. So for that reason, for products that sit on my entire face (foundation and powder) I took the decision to use higher end products (as I have done for many years). I'm not saying that this is appropriate for everyone, but if you have read my previous blogs, you will know that I have problematic skin and skin that will react badly to the cheaper foundations (as I have found out the hard way in the past). But if you have lovely skin then you can probably get away with wearing any thing, and for this I envy you.
But on to my review. With my problem skin has come an oiliness that means by the end of the day my makeup has almost worn right off, I was up until a while ago unable to use powder as it dried out my skin which just made it more oily and so had the complete opposite effect to what I was hoping to achieve.
But I recently came across a wonderful powder by Clinique that does not cause this effect. Their loose blended face powder is brilliant. I use number 3 (transparency 3) which is suitable for very fair to fair skin. It comes with its own retractable travel brush, which is really good for handbag application but a larger fluffier powder brush is better to apply (but to be fair most days I just use its brush for an application and it works just fine). The powder is fine blended and so goes on really soft. I would recommend a pressed powder for people who want to matte their face completely, but I find that this loose powder matte's any shine without leaving a 'cakey' look to my skin, it also sets my makeup making it last all day, extending the life of my makeup even further by using this and a primer. In winter a primer does this job on its own but in hot summer months I need something more.
The powder is a little on the pricey side (£20 including the brush) but you get a lot of product that uses allergy tested ingredients and Clinique do not test on animals either. 
All in all id say that its worth the investment and can take on any high street alternative.
So thats all for now, I'm going to be writing a few more reveiws soon, again about recently purchased products, and a list of 5 must tries and 5 must avoids.

Friday, 13 May 2011

5 Products that I could not live without

Hola chickitos'

This is a fun tag that a friend asked me to do for my blog and so I aggreed and here I am writing it. The tag is, to imagine that you are stranded on a Desert Island and you can only have 5 makeup products with you for the rest of your time there, if they run out they will be magically replenished (I didnt say it was realistic) if they run out before you are rescued...and yes on this island with you is also your perfect match (and if your me, that means make-up is needed).

The first product that I would bring with me is concealer, i have this fab Jillian Dempsey pallet that is AMAZING and works for everything so that even I could (possibly) get away without wearing makeup! This would be my first product, as it can cover up blemishes, dark circles and uneven skin tone. But can be used as a highlighter and even a skin warmer (as it comes with an apricot tone).

The second product that I would bring is mascara, at the minute I'm using L'Oreal's Volume Million Lashes, but I must admit that I'm not a very loyal mascara buyer, as I tend to change every time I run out. I just think that mascara is the one product that you can easily chop and change and so I like to see what the new products on the market are at all times. I would probably take a Lancome Hypnose mascara with me as it has to be the ultimate mascara, I just don't have it all the time because its so pricey.

The third product that I would bring with me would be Max Factors brow pencil in Ebony, their brow pencil is fab, it stays on all day and is applied really easily (due to the fact that it comes with a hard bristle brush), and eyebrows are important, they frame your eyes and draw attention to them; and a really good strong eyebrow will do your bone structure wonders!

The fourth product I would bring with me is a MAC eyeshadow, in the shade 'Antiqued'. I really don't care what anyone says about these eyeshadows, they are fantastic value for money and the fact that they're really pigmented means that you don't have to do a lot of build up to get colour, yet if you want to stay more demure you can just blend the hell out of it. The shade that I have chosen is a gorgeous brown/copper/bronze shade that has the power to warm up your face and make your eyes beautifully dark without being over dramatic, and brown eyeshadow really is every girls friend.

And the final product I would take with me is a lipstick. From the new Chanel 'Rouge Coco Shine' range in 'canotier' its a subtle nude beige colour that would suit all skin colours and ages. Its a bit of a splurge product, but its a really nourishing lipstick thats just lovely to wear.

And that my friends concludes this little Blog.
I tag every one who is reading to either blog their own, comment or message me your answers or just think or ask your friends for a bit of a giggle.


Sunday, 8 May 2011

Body Shop - mini haul reveiw

I recently had a mini spending spree in the Body Shop. I have to say that I love all the products that I purchased and the fact that they are against animal testing makes every buy that much sweeter!

I purchased 3 makeup products; the baked bronzer in 02 (warm glow), the brow and lash gel, and the skin primer matte it. I also got 3 skin care products; the cucumber freshening water, the passion fruit cleansing gel and the carrot moisture cream.

I'll start with the bronzer; I am very light skinned and find it hard to find foundation that is light enough for my skin tone (even MAC's NC15 is a tad too dark for me - THATS how pale I am) so you can imagine how hard it has been to find a bronzer that wont make me look orange unless i practically blend it off my skin (which ends up being a total waste of product). The baked bronzer from the body shop is similar to macs but only comes in two colours, its slightly cheaper and I think has a nicer texture. Its not too shimmery which is a bonus as these types of bronzers are really obvious (and I mean isnt that the whole point of face make up? to make it look like thats your natural look, and unless youre Edward Cullen, who has sparkly skin??)
It goes on really well and helps define your cheek bones (where bronzer should always be applied) its not dark but I guess if you wanted a darker colour you could pack it on and build it up, but this was the lightest shade.
The second item I purchased was the brow gel, I have been looking for a good control and condition- product for my brows for some time now, and this clear one is a really good one. I like the clear as you can still apply brow pencil/not apply pencil and manage to control them if (like me) you have thick eyebrows. Its a non greasy formula that conditions as it controls. It also does not dry too stiff to make you feel you've just had botox - which is always a bonus.

The final product I got was the matte it primer, they do a moisturising primer, but i find that its not too good if you want to apply foundation. The feel of the matte primer is lovely, a little goes a long way and it completely perfects the skins texture (obviously it doesnt hide blemishes) but on clear areas and areas with few small blemishes it really helps the look and feel of the skin. Applying it first in your routine will mean that your makeup looks fresher and brighter and will stay put for far longer. And as it is a matte product it also reduces the need for a powder set (which completely dries my skin out).

On to the skin care - the cucumber water is amazing!! after a few days of use my skin looks fresher and has far less blemishes! I use it after cleansing, before I put on my moisturiser. Even though it serves the same purpose as a toner, by using it after cleansing it basically finished the process, by applying a small amount on a cotton pad you and further cleanse your face with it, you will see how much more you can clean!
After I use the cucumber water I apply the carrot moisture cream, at first I thought it was too thick ans would make me break out and alter the oil balance in my skin, but I have to say the outcome was totally the opposite. It makes your skin tone look more even and makes your skin soft and dewey without being heavy or greasy.
The last product, although I like it I was a little disappointed. The passion fruit cleansing gel is a really nice formula, it smells amazing but due to its texture it doesnt lather up well and so it a bit odd to apply and although my face feels cleaner after use, I always feel like it hasnt worked properly.

So my friends that was my mini haul, hope you enjoyed reading and if you walk past the Body shop I'd deffs recommend going in for a look!