Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Urban Decay Preen Shadow Box: Review and Swatches

This was my first ever experience of Urban Decay eyeshadow - and what an experience it was! Please excuse the dents and such - this palette has been through alot. The Preen Shadow Box contains six shadows:

Top Row L-R: Snatch, Mildew, Flash.
Bottom Row L-R: Painkiller, Smog, Toasted.

All of these have the great texture and pigmentation we have grown to know and love from Urban Decay shadows over the years. The hole in the middle was home to a travel-size 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Zero (Black), but because i've had this palette so long i've used up that liner, and it's replacement, and am getting low again - for a long time it was my go-to liner (it has since been replaced by Barry M Bold Black Waterproof Eyeliner). It also came with a miniature Original Eyeshadow Primer Potion.

Check out the swatches:

Top: 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Zero. L-R: Snatch, Mildew, Flash, Painkiller, Smog, Toasted
All swatched over Original Urban Decay Primer Potion.
All of these swatches were colour accurate on the camera - I don't know what I did to them between then and now. It has only affected two however, Mildew is a touch more green and Painkiller is much more vibrant blue. They are all a dream to apply and easy to blend. The eyeliner is great too - smudge-proof and water-proof, but still soft and blendable.

What was your first experience with Urban Decay?


Sunday, 8 April 2012

Illamasqua Easter Hunt: Day Four

The offer even applies to the products already discounted from the easter hunt! Although, just as a warning - you need to be logged in in order to recieve the 15% discount.


Saturday, 7 April 2012

Illamasqua Easter Hunt: Day Three

You know the drill by now! Here's todays clue:

And here are today's colours:
Nymph: Warm cotton candy pink, matt finish

Hussy: Bright candy pink, matt finish

Tremble: Soft lilac pink, matt finish

Katie: Soft candy pink, matt finish

Lover: Soft apricot, matt finish

Blusher isn't really something I have much experience with, mainly because I have a strong natural pink in my cheeks, but these look great. They are down from £16.50 to £8.25.

Have you bought anything so far?


These swatches and descriptions were taken from the Illamasqua website - I don't own any of these products. If and when I do there will be swatches!

Friday, 6 April 2012

Illamasqua Easter Hunt: Day Two

Here is the clue for day two:

Now, this is obviously nail varnish! 

To save you the effort, here they are:

Jo'mina: Electric Lilac

Collide: Bright neon pink, satin finish

Gamma: Neon Orange
Muse: Deep blue teal, glossy finish

Stagnate: Grey mauve

This is great! I've been wanting Gamma and Jo'mina since I first saw swatches, but I've had reservations about spending £13.50 on a nail varnish, even if it gets great reviews (My limit is OPI at £10.50, and even then I wait for sales). It is brilliant to be able to try them out for a reduced price.

Just as a notice, it appears that these rewards stack, so you can still buy the rewards from the first day at the reduced price! I assume this will last until midnight Sunday.

Have you bought anything? Want something? Hoping any products go on sale? 


These swatches and descriptions were taken from the Illamasqua website - I don't own any of these products. If and when I do there will be swatches!

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Illamasqua Easter Hunt: Day One

"Easter is here, and this year we will be celebrating it the Illamasqua way... with our own unique Easter Hunt! 
Over the next four days of Easter, exclusively on Illamasqua.com, we'll be releasing a different set of hidden discounted product shades every day. Your job is to find them.  
Simply crack the cryptic clues revealed by e-mail or on the Illamasqua online shop, and follow the trail to reveal your exclusive Easter treats, all selected from our best sellers list. 
Keep your eyes peeled for the BIG surprise treat on Easter Sunday."

Now although this is not the most cryptic clue in the world, it is a little time consuming sifting through Illamasqua's large shadow collection to find the discounted ones. So i've done it for you.
They are powder eyeshadows in:

Machine: Rich charcoal black, with glitter.

Toxic: Warm coral nude, matt finish.
(Although this looks a lot more pink than coral to me)

Stealth: Creamy buttermilk, matt finish.

Imagine: Bright periwinkle blue, matt finish.

Bronx: Pale bronze gold, shimmer finish.

This is an interesting mix of colours here and there appears to be something for everyone - it's nice to see some staple colours mixed with some brighter choices!

Are you thinking of picking anything up, or are you waiting to see what the other days bring?


These swatches and descriptions were taken from the Illamasqua website - I don't own any of these products (I hope to soon - I have my eye on Machine and Imagine). If and when I do there will be swatches!

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Current Affairs: Is The Hunger Games suitable for younger audiences?

With the release of The Hunger Games on March 23rd there has been a sizable amount of press coverage about parents' worries as to whether or not it is suitable for their children to watch or read. The argument seems to be divided into three camps; Those who are fine with their children both reading the books and watching the film, those who allow their children to read the books but not see the film due to the difference between imagination and vision, and those who currently aren't allowing either.

The concerns are understandable. For those who don't know, The Hunger Games is set in a post-apocalyptic version of North America called Panem, which is divided into a 'Capitol' and twelve districts. Some years ago there was a rebellion where the districts rose up against the Capitol however, the Capitol prevailed and set a punishment. Every year one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen must be sent from each district to compete in The Hunger Games - a fight to the death with only one winner, who will be rewarded with riches and fame.

This is where the main character, Katniss Everdeen comes in. Her twelve year old sister Primrose is picked for the games and Katniss volunteers to compete in her place. Thus starts her journey.

I am now going to give my honest answer to the question above, however in my answer there may be mild spoilers of the plot of The Hunger Games as well as of it's sequels. If you do not wish to know what happens please look away now.

Now - from that description I totally sympathise with those who do not want to expose young people to the deaths of over twenty teenagers killed by other teenagers, especially with a number of stories in the news about the effect of violent films and video games on the young. However, we must not discount the talents of both the author Suzanne Collins and the filmmakers who have been incredibly sensitive to their audience and their limits (Barring one event in the third book, Mockingjay which I feel is incredibly uncomfortable - and I am above the age of the target audience). The books are never gruesome or particularly detailed in their descriptions of violence - just a statement of what happens and reactions from other characters. The filmmakers (in conjunction with Collins) have removed some scenes and concepts that while not particularly disturbing in book form may be so on film as well as subtly cutting away from almost every death - only showing two bodies in the film and in the most inoffensive manner possible.

There have been concerns that the story may encourage violence. In my opinion it is quite the contrary. The characters who survive the competition are those who are reluctant to kill - only in self defence or by accident. The story shows the importance teamwork, friendship and family and shows what violence does to people. When a young character dies it is shown as a real tragedy and the main character mourns for her. The trilogy as a whole shows the need to stand up for what is right, but also that life can be hard work and that death can be devastating.

It is also possible to argue that The Hunger Games is no worse than many books aimed at teenagers, or even those taught in schools, books such as To Kill a Mockingbird, Of Mice and Men and Lord of the Flies.

Overall I believe that it is quite reasonable to allow teens and older children read and watch The Hunger Games as it avoids gratuitous violence and has very good messages for young people. However, you know your child best - if they are of an extremely sensitive disposition you may want to give serious thought to what is suitable.

Do you have an opinion on this matter? Should children and teens watch The Hunger Games?


Please bear in mind that as a resident of the United Kingdom I have seen a slightly edited version of the film as the British Board of Film Classification has quite strong regulations concerning blood and death in films of the rating desired by the studio, Lionsgate. In total very little film was cut, however for anyone reading this review elsewhere please bear in mind I have only seen the UK version.

I earlier mentioned one event about which I am uncomfortable. I will discuss this more in a book review that I will publish at a later date. I don't feel that this is urgent as it does not directly concern The Hunger Games but its second sequel Mockingjay - the film of which will not be released for at least two years.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012


Hi everyone!

This is just to meet you all and tell you a little about myself and this blog.

I have been a member of blogger for six years now, and have had a couple of blogs. However, being the perfectionist that I am I have always given up because I what I write doesn't meet my own standards.

Here, I'm giving it another go because I am attempting to be happy with my own work and I have every intention of sticking to it this time!

Hopefully we will all get to know each other a little better over time, see you all soon!