Monday, 23 May 2016

Bright Smile - The Lowdown on Crest Teeth Whitening Strips - AD


Hello again. I am not going to do the whole "I'm sorry I haven't posted in a while, I've been super busy" spiel as the truth is I have just been off enjoying some quiet time with my family an friends and neglected my blog - Slap on the wrists for Rosie!

Today I am bringing you the low down on the famous Crest Teeth Whitening Strips. Everyone is always asking about my teeth and how I keep them so white. I have used a few different types of whitening treatments now, so here are my thoughts on the Crest strips.


I first heard about these a few years ago now when people started to pick them up in the US and bring them home to Ireland as they were not available here. A lot of people have raved about them so when I was asked to try them out I jumped at the chance.

They come in a box of 14 treatments (28 strips, top and bottom) and are in a tiny packet so easy to bring travelling or throw in your handbag.
It is recommended to use them for 30 minutes each day to see the best results. I found that putting them on while I did my make up in the morning was perfect as the 30 minutes flew by.


The one thing I found great about these above other teeth whitening options was the taste, or lack of. Some whiteners taste awful but these are very easy to manage for half an hour. They apply the teeth like a selotape strip and stay but for the full treatment time, making it easy to talk and even have a drink of water (I tried just to experiment!) After the 30 mins, you peel off the top and bottom strip and then proceed to brush your teeth as normal to get rid of the remaining product.



I noticed a instant difference after one use, but bare in mind that my teeth are quite bright anyway, so your level of whitening will depend on the starting colour of your teeth. There is definitely an instant effect and people have asked me what I am using on my teeth as they can see a considerable difference.

My only fault with the Crest Whitening Strips is the sensitivity I have developed. It is not extreme at all, but I have definitely noticed a little sensitivity to cold drinks directly after using them, however this does disappear after a few hours.

My teeth this morning with no filter, taken from snpachat (rosieconxxx) 

Overall, I am very impressed. If you are looking for fast results then these are your guys. If you suffer from sensitive teeth anyway, I would use these strips with caution.

A box of 28 strips can be purchased from www.BeautyMatters.ie and cost €69.95.

If you have any questions about them please contact me on either my Facebook, Instagram or Twitter

Have a lovely week ladies,

Rosie
x 


Monday, 11 April 2016

My Top 5 Foundations



Hello again, 

I hope you all had a lovely (rainy) weekend. I am back today with my top 5 foundations. I always find that many of the ladies who attend my masterclasses always have the same problem; they can't seem to find the "PERFECT" foundation. It seems like most of us are always in search of something better when it comes to our base and that although we might like our current foundation, there is always something that it is missing. 

My biggest tip for anyone in search of the perfect foundation is to remember that your skin changes regularly, so what might have been working for you for the past few months, may all of a sudden not sit right on the skin and you may feel like you're back on the hunt for 'the one' again. This is why when I am asked what my favourite foundation is, I cannot give just one. I have compiled a list of my top 5 below, some old faves and some new to my collection. I change up my foundation depending on the condition of my skin at the time. 


1. Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat Le Teint

I think we are all familiar with the old classic Touche Éclat concealer and brightener from YSL so when this foundation launched I had high hopes for it. This is a foundation that I use on my skin when it is feeling a little flat and lacking that glow to it. It applies to the face beautifully, feeling lightweight and blending very easily. I would say this is a light coverage but can be built up to a medium coverage if needs be. For my skin, I would still need a good concealer to cover any acne scarring or breakouts and also under eye dark circles. I love using this as my daytime foundation as my skin still looks like skin (as opposed to a heavy layer of flawless coverage) It gives the skin a radiant glow without being shiny or oily looking. My only tip would be to stay away from this one if you have very oily skin. It comes in 17 shades and I wear BR20 on no false tan days, and B40 when I am wearing tan. You can pick this up from your nearest YSL counter.  


2. Chanel Vitalumière Aqua 

I first tried the Chanel Vitalumière Aqua foundation a few years ago now. I was desperate to embrace the more subtle, natural coverage of an "aqua" foundation, but unfortunately at the time my acne was pretty bad, so this lightweight foundation did nothing for me. However, since my skin has cleared up, this foundation has been a staple in my makeup collection. It has a light coverage that disappears into the skin. I find the best way to apply this is with your hands as it has a very liquid texture to it. A little goes a long way too, so each bottle lasts me a few months. I only ever wear this during the day when I want a minimal make up look. You will not get great coverage from this, however it leaves a beautiful satin finish to the skin. Unlike the YSL above, this one is for the opposite skin type, so if you have normal to oily skin, this is ideal. If you have dehydrated or dry skin, unfortunately it will sit into the creases and cause a flakey look to the skin. My skin type changes regularly, so when it is clear and hydrated, this is the one I go to for daytime. It also carries an SPF of 15 too. One last top tip with this one - apply a good moisturiser before applying. I wear shade 30 Beige and it is available from your nearest Chanel counter.


3. L'oreal True Match

I guess if you are makeup mad like myself, then you have probably heard all there is to know about this foundation by now. Considering that it costs just under €15, you certainly get more than you pay for from it. I know there have been split views on this one, but for me, I adore it. It is very similar to my most recent purchase, the Armani Luminous Silk foundation, but for a fraction of the price. There is a huge shade range to chose from so you are bound to find your true match!! This foundation is definitely a medium coverage at least. I need very little concealer with it, but it also feels light on the skin. I do not necessarily get a 'glow' from it so it definitely needs some added illuminator, but sure who cares when you love a highlighter as much as I do?! It lasts very well on the skin too, without the need for many touch ups. I think this will suit anyone with normal to combination skin. I currently wear D3/W3 shade, and you can get your hands on this from Boots or your local pharmacy. 


4. Stila Stay All Day 

If you have been following me for a while, then you will know this would probably stand out as my most loved foundation. Whenever I post a very flawless, full coverage make up look, this is the one I am most likely wearing. I wear it for photoshoots, nights out, or if I know my make up needs to be applied at 7am and has to last until the evening. I fell in love with this after using it at my first makeup masterclass for Stila last year, and I just can't go without it. It is a medium to full coverage foundation and is the heaviest one in my kit. At first I was a little scared of just how thick it was (it comes with a spatula instead of a pump) but it doesn't feel heavy on the skin at all. It blends easily and doesn't set as quickly as other full coverage foundations, allowing you time to work it into the skin. This covers all of my acne scars with ease, so the only place I have to apply the concealer (hidden in the lid) is under my eyes to cover the sleepless nights with a teething toddler. It dries to a matte finish so I always add a highlighter to the skin. The best thing about this is how long it lasts. I have applied this at 7am some mornings for a busy day of shoots etc and by bedtime it has barely budged, except for around my mouth from eating. If you like a very flawless, high coverage look then I suggest you try a sample of this. I wear shade 7 Buff and you can pick this up from Harvey Nichols Dundrum or Marks and Spencers on Mary Street Dublin. 


5. Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk 

One of the newest editions to my ever growing makeup collection is the famous Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk foundation. I honestly was happy with the 4 above, but felt compelled to give this a try to see what all the hype was about. I have been using it for about 2/3 weeks now and so far so good. I would put this somewhere in the range of a medium coverage, although it can certainly be worn as a lighter coverage as a small amount is very easy to blend and will give a more natural, sheer coverage. However, if you want something that can take you from daytime wear to full on glam nights out then this is your man. If you take the time to build this up, you can create a flawless coverage that will photograph beautifully in the evening (no SPF means no 'white face' camera flash back disasters!) This is suited to normal or oily/combination skin. I find if I have any dry patches it can cling to them so for anyone with very dry skin I would steer clear of this one, or make sure to apply lots of moisturiser before applying the foundation. I wear shade 4.5 and you can pick this up from the Giorgio Armani Counter in Brown Thomas. 

I hope this answers some of your questions regarding my make up base that I usually wear. I am still testing out the Nars Sheer Glow foundation and will report back to you all once I have made my mind  up on it. 

Have a lovely week everyone, 

Lots of Love,

Rosie x 

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

My Top 5 Photo Editing Apps

Over time, I have been teaching myself how to edit my photos from my iPhone, as this is how I take most of my pictures. The quality of the iPhone camera has improved dramatically, and with a little editing from some of my favourite apps, you can have your photos looking just as good as those taken with a premium brand camera. 

I have put together my top 5 apps below- 

1. Snapseed 

This app is amazing for all kinds of editing as it has a lot of features within it. You can brighten backgrounds, sharpen the image, saturate, contrast etc. The reason I love this app in particular is that you can select certain areas of the picture to edit separately. This means that you can edit a background to be black and white and keep the main focus of the image in colour for example. I use this to brighten backgrounds to create a cooler, whiter background in some pictures. You can also smooth out lines or whiten eyes with this one, but in general, I use this for editing the backgrounds of my images. 

2. Perfect365 

This is similar to Facetune as it detects your face in the image and allows you to edit many parts of the face. I tend to whiten the whites of my eyes to make them pop, along with smoothing out the skin if I have any blemishes/spots. You can also do a full face of make up with this app which I find incredible. If you take a picture with no make up on, after using this app it can look like you've spent an hour doing your make up. Personally, I don't use anything other than the smoothing, eye whitening and sometimes teeth whitening with this app but there are plenty of things to explore within this one. 

3. Relook 

This app is similar to Snapseed in that it has lots of options to edit the full images, as well as image filters similar to Instagram, but with a lot more choice. The main feature I use within this app is the clarity function. I like to use this over the eyes to make your lashes pop, and also over the brows and lips. Sometimes when you edit an image you can lose the definition and the clarity function brings sharpness back to the image. There are lovely filters within this app too which you can adjust depending on how strong you would like the filter applied. 


4. Diptic 

This app is for adding a few images together to make a collage that will be the perfect square size for Instagram. You can choose from dozens of formations and pop your favourite images straight into them. You can also adjust the borders or boundaries too so that the shape of the images is unique for each finished look. This one is pretty straight forward but I find myself using this every week. I love it for putting together collages of Harry's photos. You can also flip the images, so this is how I create the "mirrored" effect on some of my outfit posts. All you need to do is add the same image to a split screen template and flip one of the images them around. 



5. Instazz 

Lastly, this app has many features like the ones mentioned above, however I only ever use this app to add blurred out sides to an image. If my image is not taken in the square format then I sometimes upload it to this app, where it gives you the white border on each side. I then change the border to the blurred effect and adjust how clear I want the edges. Really easy to use, and I'm sure there are a tonne of similar features in here too, but the blurring effect is why I turn to this app. 


These are some of my favourite editing apps. If you have any other apps that you love and I should check out, please let me know in the comments section below. 

I think the key to editing is not to overdo it, which can be hard when with just a touch of a button, you can change any feature about yourself. I try to just enhance the features that I already have, as we all know Instagtam is mostly about pretty images. I don't think there is anything wrong with editing your images once you still look like the same person at the end of it! I was definitely an avid user of the smoothing function before, and my skin ended up looking plastic in some photos. I guess when suffering from acne, this helped me to remove the blemishes I didn't like on my skin, but now I just like to edit a little more subtly and enhance what I have instead of hiding it. My last tip... If you can take a picture in natural day light, do! It's the best filter for any image. 

Until next time, 

Rosie X 



Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Hair Care For Thin Hair | Ad


I promised you all that I would share what I had been using for a few weeks now to try and thicken up my hair, so here it is!
I have always had very fine hair since I was a kid, and with years of styling and hair extensions behind me, I am always trying to find something that will help my thin hair and make it feel and look fuller. 

I have been using the Kevin Murphy range for a few months as it is the brand that my hairdressers use on me each time I'm in the salon. I have been loving the Blonde Angel range from Kevin Murphy for keeping my blonde colour from going brassy and keeping the blonde a nice cool shade. I use it once a week on my hair and hair extensions. 

Today's post is not about that product though, as I have found a really great range of plumping products from Kevin Murphy which have been making a noticeable difference to my hair condition. It's called the Plumping Wash and Plumping Rinse along with a Body Mass treatment spray. 

I have been washing my hair with these products every second day (I know, I probably wash my hair too often but my hair gets greasy very quickly and I just love the feeling of fresh hair!) and I have really noticed a difference to how full my hair looks once it's styled. 

I wash it once with the shampoo, then apply my conditioner for about 3/4 minutes while I wash myself in the shower. I rinse that off and once my hair is towel dried I apply the Body Mass spray all over from root to tip. It smells lovely and doesn't leave any product build up in the hair at all. My hair feels bouncy and full once it's been blow dried. 

I was always someone who bounced from brand to brand when it came to hair care and never stayed loyal to one range of products but I'm already on to my second shampoo and conditioner. I also love that it is paraben free which means it is suitable to use on hair extensions and won't ruin your bonds. However, I never apply conditioner to the bonds out of habit, and always use conditioner just in the ends of my hair.

A little goes a very long way with these products, so each bottle should last you a few weeks depending on your hair length.

The range are stocked in a number of hair salons so to find your nearest stockist, please go to the Kevin Murphy Facebook page here

Another little gem that I highly recommend for thin hair is the Viviscal range of supplements. I have taken these a few times when my hair has been damaged and I definitely saw a difference in hair growth over a three month course. They can be purchased in most pharmacies and also Boots.

Here's to fuller, thicker hair!

Rosie
x



Monday, 7 March 2016

Recipe : Chicken and Coconut Curry

I know what you're thinking...A recipe, on my blog! Coming from someone who admittedly cannot cook, I promise this is just for those who asked me for this yummy Chicken Bang Bang recipe when I cooked it last week, and not a new feature for my blog. 

I am not the best when it comes to cooking but I can follow a recipe and this one is fool proof. My Mum cut it from a magazine recently and sent it on to myself and my two sisters, who are also loving it. It was on a little scrap of paper so I promised I would rewrite it here for anyone who wants to try it. 

Here's what you'll need - 

- 1 tablespoon vegetable or sunflower oil
- 1 large onion, peeled and roughly chopped (I leave this out as Paul hates onions!)
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed 
- 2.5cm (1in) piece of root ginger, peeled and finely grated
- 2 large green chillies, deseeded (optional) and finely chopped
- 15g (1/2oz) coriander, leaves picked and stalks roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons garam masala
- 400ml coconut milk 
- 150ml chicken stock
- 450g skinless, boneless chicken thighs cut into 2.5cm (1on) cubes - I just use regular chicken breasts
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 75g green beans, trimmed and halfed
- Lime wedges, boiled rice and naan bread to serve. 

Method - 

Pour the vegetable or sunflower oil into a large saucepan. Add the roughly chopped onion and crushed garlic and fry on a gentle heat for 6-8 minutes until soft but not browned. Add the finely grated ginger, and finely chopped chillies, the roughly chipped coriander stalks, the garam masala and fry for a further 1-2 minutes. Pour in the coconut milk and the chicken stock, and bring slowly to the boil. Add the cubes of chicken and season with a little salt and pepper. 
Reduce the heat and simmer, covered with a lid, for 30 minutes. Remove the lip and simmer for a further 15 minutes, adding the green beans for the last five minutes of cooking, by which time the chicken should be completely cooked and the sauce thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the coriander leaves. Serve at once with the lime wedges and some boiled rice and naan bread. 

If I can cook this recipe, anyone can. 

Enjoy, 

Rosie 

Friday, 4 March 2016

My Latest Eyebrow Dupe

Hi everyone, I hope you're all wrapped up somewhere warm away from the snow today! I adore the snow but only when I can curl up at the fire and watch it from a warm house! 

Today I am back to share with you all my latest eyebrow find. As many of you know, I have been using the Anastasia Beverly Hills DipBrow Pomade in shade Blonde for about a year now and never found anything that matched up in terms of consistency, staying power and colour. 
The ashy tone to the ABH one was something I loved and until recently, couldn't find a match for. 

A couple of weeks ago I was sent out some products from Cailyn Cosmetics to try out. I had heard of the brand from other bloggers but had never tried it out myself. They were fast becoming famous for their O! WOW brush which I had heard lots about. I did try it out, and although the quality out of the brush is amazing, I am not the biggest fan of this style of brush. I prefer a large buffing brush to blend in my foundation and find these brushes hard to hold in my hand! 


However, they also sent me out their Gelux Eyebrow to try in shade "hazelnut" 
The name threw me a little as I thought it was going to be too dark for me but it was exactly like my ABH favourite in colour. It has a very ashy/grey tone to it which is perfect for blondes and matched my natural hair colour perfectly. 




I also loved that it came with its own applicator in the handle part of the product, meaning I can bring my brows with me everywhere!! It is also waterproof and sweat proof so your brows won't be sliding off your face at the gym! I have been using it every day for a few weeks now and love it. In terms of consistency, I think the ABH one is a little creamier so I sometimes add some Inglot Duraline to my Cailyn Gelux to soften it up slightly but it definitely gets a thumbs up from me. 




I ran out of my ABH and now won't need to repurchase as this one is the perfect match for it. You can pick it up for €19.99 from www.CailynIreland.ie and it comes in various shades to suit all skin tones. 




Happy brow shopping ladies, 

Lots of love, 

Rosie X 


Wednesday, 17 February 2016

How I Stay Positive Everyday



I am back today with something different, and have put together my tips on how I manage to stay positive in what can sometimes be a negative world. 

For many years I have been a worrier, an over thinker, and have suffered from anxiety on and off for almost 8 years. I have spent most of that time trying to figure out ways to keep my mind positive and to focus on what calms me and makes me happy. I am constantly learning and growing, and I can definitely say that I can allow myself to get very down and negative at times without even realising it. I can get sucked into other peoples negative vibes and in turn, I begin to view my own life in a negative way too. 

I have put together my top 5 tips that help me to snap out of my negative mindset and begin to focus on the good things in life - 

1 - Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind 

I remember asking a friend of mine last summer how she managed to keep herself so positive in a certain situation she was dealing with and her answer? - Out of sight, out of mind. At the time I didn't really think about what that actually meant. 
If you go looking for negativity, or allow yourself to be in the presence of something or someone that upsets you, makes you anxious or gives you negative feelings, you will in turn be affected by that. 
What you don't hear/see won't hurt you, and in my line of work, this is proving so true. I used to find myself scrolling through social media and reading other peoples rants and moans about life or watching endless snapchat stories of strangers giving out about this, that and the other. I never put my phone down afterwards and felt good. I always felt negative and frankly a bit miserable, just like the person who had created the content. I began to unfollow people that made me feel this way, and I have been blown away by how much more positive and happy I feel. Any time I click into social media, I am now surrounded by people that make me smile, laugh and generally give me good positive energy. Its all a choice. You choose what you read, who you spend time with, who you allow to impact your mood. 
This is also true in real life. I am a firm believer in less is more when it comes to friends. I have a small handful of close friends who I love dearly and bring so much happiness and positivity into my life. They say you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with, so be sure to choose them wisely. Life is too short to surround yourself with bad energy.

2 - Make A Conscious Choice 

This one can be a little annoying to hear at first. I remember reading somewhere that if you choose to be happy and positive first thing in the morning, it will help you stay that way for the day. Some days, no matter how much I tell myself to remain positive, it is just impossible, however it does make you aware of your thoughts and allows you a chance to try and alter any negative ones that might be creeping in. Having been practicing this one for a few months now, it definitely has helped me to be more mindful and in tune with my head. Being aware of each thought that enters your head allows you to filter out the bad ones. 

3 - Have Someone Keep You In Check 

We all need to be given a kick up the arse sometimes, and having someone who is there to call you out on your negativity can be enough to change your mindset. I find I can just wake up grumpy and for the entire day I view every task that is thrown at me in a negative way. Most of the time I don't even know I am doing it. It is only when my partner pulls me up on it that I reflect and think "ok Rosie, cop on and drop the negative and snappy mood".
I tend to pass off my negative days as 'hormonal' days but thats very rarely the case. 
I do the same for Paul when he begins to get stressed and grumpy. Sometimes all it takes is for someone to call you out on it for you to change your thought process. 

4 - Meditation 

Back when I began having panic attacks after my Dad passed away in 2008, I was advised to try meditation and mindfulness. There are so many ways in which you can practice mindfulness and mediation but the one that has worked consistently for me is YouTube videos before bed. 
I find my mind is at its busiest just as I settle down to go asleep, so this is when I need the most help in calming my thoughts. 
Every night since my pregnancy with Harry I have gone to sleep using YouTube guided meditations and guided talks regarding positivity and calming your mind. My recent favourite is a YouTube channel called Actualised.org 
Paul came across it one night, and we have both been listening since. There are so many videos on motivation, meditation, staying positive, being productive. I fall asleep listening to these most nights and find it helps to keep my mind clear and happy. 

5 - Reflection 

This is something I have only learnt recently. Any time I am faced with a stressful situation, or something that has me sick with worry, I like to sit down and think about the last time I felt this way and how I SURVIVED!! We tend to be quick to forget how great we are at overcoming difficulties in our lives, but sometimes just reflecting on how far you have come and all that you have managed to deal with in your life can be the wake up call you need to remind yourself that you are strong enough to cope and to kickstart those positive thoughts again. 

These are just my tips on how I personally stay positive in my day to day life, and may not work for everyone. Also, please be aware that I too have bad days where NONE of the above work, and on those days, I just chose to be kind to myself and allow myself to feel whatever way I do that day, be it positive or negative. 

Lots of Love, 

Rosie