Benefit Brow Bar Experience: Wax & Tint

In a couple of weeks I’ll be turning 21 and instead of tackling all of the proper issues that are going on within this time, like reevaluating my future, my ideals and relationships,  I chose to get my eyebrows done professionally. Because I’m a woman now.

I have only ever had my eyebrows done once before and that was through a friend. Other than that I have no experience with professional beauty services and I was both excited and pretty nervous to try something.

I’d heard about Benefit’s brow services through Brogan Tate’s vlogs (I freaking love this girl. You need to watch her) and as I am currently using some of their brow products, I thought I would be able to trust them.

Disclaimer: I am a total novice when it comes to eyebrows so this is my subjective opinion. It is all my own and I am not being payed to say this (I wish I was!)

BOOKING

The whole process was pretty simple to be honest, which was a relief. I decided quite late in the evening on Saturday that I wanted to get my brows done and booked the appointment online for the next day. All I had to do was fill in some basic details, as in my email address, name and contact details and I was all booked in.

The form gives you the option to pick the service you want, obviously, with plenty of opportunity to alter it later. It also allows you to pick a preference of who will do the work for you. As I had no experience in this field, I allowed the service to pick for me.

Despite the fact I am currently based in a small city (my university home) I found that both Benefit counters in my local shopping centre offered brow services. I chose to go with the counter in Debenhams but I believe those in Boots also offer it too. You can check out what’s by you here.

APPOINTMENT

So I turned up at the Benefit counter, albeit slightly nervous and tired after shopping, and was greeted by a lovely girl called Ashleigh who had been named on my appointment form as the girl who was going to do my brows. She ran through a couple of forms with me and give me the option to do a patch test. As I have had my brows tinted before and I have used several hair dyes all without a reaction, I was able to decline this and get straight on with my appointment.

If you do require a patch test, a new appointment will be booked for you after the required time period. I just wanted mine done then and there and wasn’t too fussed.

I was asked to fill out a form claiming I had declined the patch test, as well as confirming I was not on any medications nor had I done any of the things listed on the list. Things like sunbeds were listed as these can cause issues with your skin, which may lead to a reaction. You can check out Benefits requirements here. 

WAXING & TINTING

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Final Brow w/ Makeup On

What I really enjoyed and appreciated within my appointment was at every stage, Ashleigh would stop and let me have a look so I could see the process and also get her to change anything if necessary.

Before she did anything to my brows, she talked me through the way they shape them first. It was a process I was aware of but nonetheless it was interesting to hear. Using the shape of your eye and key points from the corners to the centre of your pupil, the shape of your eyebrow is defined. For example, the arch should line up with the centre of your pupil, etc. This video explains it better.

Ashleigh was very talkative and down to earth, which helped calm my nerves a bit (I often get nervous in new situations and this was no different) and chatted with me through the service. She talked me through each step as she did it, even explaining why she was putting oil on my skin after and what the certain creams were for.

She tinted my brows first and let me have a look to ensure the colour was okay. As she was the expert I just went along with what she recommended, but they do give you plenty of opportunity to have your say and control. As I am super fair, she used the lightest shade they do and talked about some of their new products in their new fair range.

The tint wasn’t on for long, I’d say maybe three or four minutes, before she cleaned it and prepared it for the waxing. A small patch test was done on the palm of my hand to test the temperature of the wax before it was put on my face, again giving me the opportunity to have control and change anything is necessary.

The whole process of waxing and tinting took about 20 minutes, and afterwards she tested a couple of the brow products on me and recommended certain techniques to make the most out of the shape.

SOME NOTES

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Final Brow w/o Makeup On. Tint Only.

What I was really happy with was the fact that I did not feel pressured to buy any extra products or services. Although brow products were used on me, as well as concealer, highlight and I was even offered to try some mascara, I was not pressured or even asked to buy them.

I have always been nervous of makeup counters because of the pressure to buy things, but as I was already paying for my tint and wax it was obviously not necessary for me to buy more.

The total for both the tint and the wax was £21.50 (list of full prices here). That is a bit expensive compared to local salon charges but I was confident that a cosmetic company would do a good job and did not mind paying that price. For what you’re offered I would say it’s totally worth it!

I’ve been booked in again for 4 weeks time, which is when the tint will start to fade and I should see that it needs doing again. However I have the option to cancel any time or rearrange if necessary.

I am so happy with the results! I was pretty nervous as I am so fair, I was frightened any kind of tint would be too dark. But the final result is subtle and natural, which makes me feel more confident when wearing no makeup. It should also help me when I get ready too. Overall I am super pleased and feel great.

I would totally recommend Benefit Brow Bar services to anyone who is considering it. They are a bit pricey but for first timers like me, I think it’s better not to take the risk and to go with a company you know will deliver.


Beauty is an area that I’ve always been interested in and although this post may seem a little shallow, I think it’s so important to do things that make you feel good.

You can see the full list of Benefit’s beauty services here.

Check out this video from Benefit.


Speak soon,

Rachael

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The Beauty Edit: Best Of 2016

I haven’t done a beauty post in a little while, but my love for makeup hasn’t subsided any in that time! Today I want to do a little round-up of some of my favourite products from 2016.

These products may be ones I have tried for the first time this year and have loved or ones that I may have used before but for one reason or another stood out majorly in 2016. This might help you find some new products to try in 2017 (God, how scary is that?) if you haven’t before, because I’d highly recommend them all.

I am a natural blonde but this year I lightened my hair a little and this shampoo has been an absolute wonder for me. Even when I was all my natural colour, this shampoo would turn the lightest points in my hair a lovely grey/silver colour which is very in right now. This is the only product of it’s kind that I’ve tried that doesn’t just tone your hair but gives it the silver shade everyone seems to be after.It’s such a dark purple shampoo that works instantly!

Even though I have oily skin, I much prefer this foundation to the matte version. It’s a completely different product with a better colour range (I am speaking for my pale people here though. I’m not 100% about the darker shades, unfortunately) and a much better coverage. This foundation makes your skin look flawless without being too cakey and looks amazing in photos. It is a bit more pricey that what I’d normally like to pay for a makeup product, but it’s amazing and lasts for ages that I won’t hesitate to pick it up again.

I love Makeup Revolution and I’ve mentioned them in all my past beauty posts, I’m sure. This year I’ve been obsessed with their eyeshadow palettes and they’re really the only things I use now. I have Flawless, Flawless Matte and Fortune Favours The Brave. Priced between £8-£10 for 32 shadows, they’re are such good value for money. They’re great quality and with a variety of shades they’re brilliant for people like me who like to experiment with makeup but don’t have a lot of money to do so. They also make brilliant gifts!

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I told you I love this brand! I mentioned this product in a post I did back in the summer (read here) and I’m still using it now. When it comes to contouring and all that, I’m not technical with it and just tend to wing it. This little product makes the process so simple. All the colours blend so well together and look so natural on the skin. The highlight is actually amazing and will give you that perfect glow. And at only £3.50 this little kit is a steal and perfect for any kind of look.

For years I’ve relied on wipes to remove my makeup. Then in 2016 I discovered Micellar water and my skin has been never been so happy. You can get this Garnier version everywhere now and I really like it. It manages to remove even waterproof mascara and leaves my skin feeling so fresh and clean. Even though it’s quite tough on makeup, it’s a really gentle formula for your skin and doesn’t leave you all red and rashy like some products.

So those were my top picks from 2016. Have you tried any of them? What are some of your favourite products from this year? I’d love to know.

If you have anything you’d like to share you can tweet me. You can also follow my blog on bloglovin if you fancy.

Speak soon,

Rachael.

10 Steps To Refresh and Reboot Your Body

Do you know those days where you just feel a bit ‘meh’? For some reason you just don’t feel 100% and it’s getting in the way of everything you’re trying to do.

Well, here are 10 little steps you can take to feeling refreshed, rebooted and ready to tackle that to-do list once again:

  1. Take a shower
  2. Wash, condition and brush your hair
  3. Lather yourself in a fresh smelling soap, my personal favourite scents are citrus ones. They make me feel so clean and ready to take on anything.
  4. Exfoliate and/or shave what needs doing
  5. Moisturise your body, head to toe. This is especially important in the winter!
  6. Wear your favourite PJs or comfies
  7. Put on a face mask
  8. Give yourself a manicure and pedicure. I find it hard to do anything when I feel a mess.
  9. Make sure the space you are in is warm and clean
  10. Get yourself your favourite hot drink

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Then you’re ready to take on anything, my friends. At least this is what normally works for me. What helps you feel refreshed and rebooted?

Speak soon,

Rachael

Things I’ve Been Loving: October

October was a frigging long month wasn’t it? Unlike previous months, which seemed to fly by, I thought it would never end.

Now winter is basically here, Christmas  is coming and we can all breathe a sigh of relief that this weird year is coming to a close.

October was an odd month for me and not a particularly good one, but these little things made me happy throughout so I though I’d share them with you:

Dangerous Woman: Ariana Grande

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I have never really been a fan of Ariana Grande and I haven’t gotten the hype that’s surrounded her since she first hit the charts. But for some reason I was drawn to this album and I have basically listened to it non-stop all month. It’s so good and I feel like whatever mood I’m in I turn to it. There’s some belters that I love screeching along to and a couple of sassy tracks that make me feel like I’m way cooler than I am.

Chokers

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I’ve had a (none sexual) thing for chokers for a little while now but this month I just stepped it up a notch. I ordered a bunch off eBay (unfortunately not all were what I expected. Lesson learnt there) and have been wearing them more often. I feel like they add an edge to a basic outfit and can look so cool with so many different things.

Toasted Teacakes

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A random mention but this month toasted teacakes have been my snack of choice. Especially now it’s getting colder and the days are becoming greyer, I really looks forward to cuddling up with a cup of tea and a teacake. I feel like such an old lady talking about this but it genuinely has been one of my favourite things to do this month. I know, I’m such an exciting human being!

The Manifesto on How to be Interesting: Holly Bourne

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This was the first full book I had read in such a long time and I just devoured it. I started it when I went away to Manchester for the weekend with my boyfriend and one of my closest friends and just whizzed through it. I have to confess I love a bit of YA and this one was so clever and interesting.

It goes into mental health and self-harm but is ultimately the tale of a girl who discovers herself while going through an extreme personality change. It’s quite raw and honest which I absolutely loved. I haven’t stopped thinking about it since I put it down.

Primark Embroidered Jeans

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I managed to find these jeans in the sale when I went back home for the day this month. I have been looking for some ripped jeans for a while now, as well as being slightly in love with this whole embroidered trend going on. So imagine my excitement when I found this beauty, which has both! I haven’t wore them everyday, but just knowing they’re now in my wardrobe has made me so happy.

Fortune Favours the Brave Palette: Makeup Revolution

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I treated myself to this palette on a student lock-in night at my local shopping centre and I don’t regret it one bit. I know I mentioned another Makeup Revolution palette in my last Loves post but that’s only because they’re so good! They’re pretty cheap (this once was £9.99 FYI) and they are fantastic. They’re so pigmented and offer a wide range of colours, so if you’re someone like me who likes to mess about with makeup I’d give them a go. This one also can in handy on Halloween when I was experimenting with various looks.

And finally:

American Horror Story: Season 6

I have been so obsessed with American Horror Story this month! Have you been watching it? It’s been amazing- I can’t get enough of it to be honest.

Me and one of my very good friends (who also happens to be my flatmate while I’m at uni) have gotten into the routine of watching it together and it’s been such a lovely part of my week for this past month. As I’ve already said, this month has been a bit crap so it’s so nice to have something to look forward to every week.  If you’re a bit squeamish like me then watching this show with someone else can be pretty useful!

I don’t want to get too much into it, as I feel like it’s best to not know anything if you fancy watching it but I will say it’s such a dark and disturbing show. It’s also very unique and clever too. I’m really enjoying it anyway and if you fancy something to watch in the darker nights then this is for you.

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So those were the things that have made this month a bit better. What have you been loving?

Speak soon,

Rachael.

 

 

 

 

Four Small Things I’m Loving Right Now

Things have been a bit odd for me these past few weeks. I moved back into university accommodation and have just started the final year of my degree (*que hysterical shrieking*). Most of my time is now spent trying to settle back into a normal routine and getting stuck into work.

So when there’s lots of things going on in my life, I try to focus some attention on the little things that I enjoy on a day to day basis to keep me sane.

Here are four things that I am really enjoying at the moment:

  • Revolution Flawless Palette

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I showed this palette in a haul a couple of months back (see here) and I have been using it constantly ever since. I’ve been using even more recently as it is one of the only palettes I allowed myself to bring to university and I don’t regret that decision one bit. I’m not very adventurous when it comes to makeup and neutrals will always be my favourite. With it’s warm coppery theme, this palette is perfect for the new season and can be used to create so many different looks.

  • Jersey Bedding

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As I’ve just explained, I moved back into student accommodation a couple of weeks ago now which meant I had to go out and buy a few new homeware bits (any excuse really). One thing I got was this new bedding set from ASDA and I freaking love it. It doesn’t seem like much just to look at it, but  it’s made from this wonderful jersey material making it so soft, cosy and warm. This is a big deal when you’re living in student accommodation which seems to always be freezing no matter the season!

  • Big Magic Podcast

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Listen here. I was obsessed with this podcast around about this time last year. I had recently just finished Elizabeth Gilbert’s book of the same name and was so interested in the whole creative conversation. So imagine my joy when I recently discovered it had a second season! I listen to these podcasts on my little commute to my campus and with every episode I feel myself becoming more and more inspired. It never fails to lift my spirits and make me feel hopeful, something I’ve need these past few weeks!

  • Primark ‘Stay All Day’ Primer

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I love Primark. As someone with a small budget and an ever-growing appetite for clothing, it’s one of my favourite stores. Last time I was there, I picked up this product on a whim. I was running out of my current primer and just wanted something to use for the time being. Now, I never seem to get on with primers but I have really enjoyed this one. I’m not saying its the best product in the entire world, nor will it keep your makeup on all night but for £3 it’s pretty good and I like it.

I hope you found this post interesting. What are you currently loving?

Speak soon,

Rachael.

Four Simple Ways To Get Your Shit Together

There’s nothing worse than feeling lost and stressed. The summer is basically over now and we’re all getting back into our normal routines; our workload’s are increasing and things are generally starting to pick up. In this time it is so easy to feel like things are getting on top of you and you’re starting to lose grasp.

I’m a worrier by nature so I feel like this quite often. Because of this, I’ve have come up with four simple things to do to make you feel like you’ve got your shit together and are once again ready to take on the world.

  • Clean Your Makeup Brushes

If you’re a makeup wearer then you’ll know the pain of washing your makeup brushes. I mean, maybe it’s just me being lazy but it’s a task I hate doing and will try to avoid it for as long as I can. But, dedicating even half an hour one evening to go through everything and clean is guaranteed to make you feel like you do indeed have your shit together and are winning at, well, life basically.

  • Self-Maintenance

Everyone can stop what they’re doing for a least a couple of hours on an evening and you should do. Take this time to run a hot bath or shower and pamper yourself. Shave your legs (if you fancy), wash and condition your hair, exfoliate, moisturise: do whatever it is in this time that makes you feel good because I promise you’ll feel amazing afterwards and all the more ready to keep going.

  • Do Some Exercise

Now I’m not encouraging you to take out an expensive gym membership and work out everyday. I mean, if you want to do that don’t let me stop you. But exercise doesn’t have to cost anything. Simply getting outside and going for a walk does wonders for both your physical and mental health. Put in some headphones and go for a wander and you’ll return feeling lighter and brighter.

  • Tidy Room, Tidy Mind

I can’t work if the area I’m in is messy and quite frankly I don’t understand how anyone can. Even if you’re not a neat freak, just do a quick whizz round of your room- put things back in drawers, make the bed. Having a clearer space with seriously help clear your mind and allow you to focus on what actually needs done.

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Keep calm and carry on my chums. I believe in you.

Speak soon,

Rachael.

 

 

 

The Beauty Edit: A Cheeky Drugstore Haul

There seems to be a lot of beauty happening on this blog right now but considering it’s become one of my favourite pastimes once again, I’m not complaining!

Even though I don’t really have a lot of spare cash at the moment I can’t seem to control myself when I see a pretty product, especially when it’s reasonably priced. And with Superdrug’s current 3 for 2 offer going on… Well I couldn’t say no!

ALL ABOUT THE BASE

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Loreal Infallible 24hr Foundation in 015 Porcelain, LA Girl Pro Conceal in Classic Ivory & Warm Sand

I absolutely love these products already. I got the LA Girl Concealers from ebay (check out the seller here) and they came the next day. I’ve been experimenting with cream contouring but because I am so pale I had to be careful with the shades. Luckily this one in Warm Sand is perfect for everyday; it’s pretty cool-toned and blends out naturally.

I’ve only tried the foundation once but so far I love it and the shade is perfect for my pale, pink-toned skin. I’m hoping to do a full review once I’ve used it more.

PURPLE TONES & SHIMMER GLOW

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Makeup Revolution Flawless Palette, Sinful Colours Kylie Jenner Nail Varnish in Mauve On, ColourPop Super Shock Eyeshadow in Bill & Makeup Revolution Highlighter in Peach Lights

For some reason I am being drawn to warm, purple shades at the moment despite the fact it’s the middle of summer. Still autumn is my favourite season and I must be missing it!

The ColourPop eyeshadow came from ebay (once again, here’s the seller) although soon they will be shipping internationally from their official website! Anyway this is kind of more purple than I expected- online swatches are never the best- but under other colours as a base it looks beautiful.

This Makeup Revolution palette has my heart. The colours are beautiful and so far all seem pretty pigmented. Again, further reviews should be coming.

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So that was everything I’ve bought recently and hopefully this will be the last haul for a while as I need to save some money!

If you have an suggestions for other posts please let me know!

You can follow my blog on bloglovin.

Speak soon,

Rachael.