Review: Soap and Glory Supercat Eyeliner

I tried guys. I really tried to like drugstore eyeliner. After swatching about ten different options on the back of my hand in Boots, the Soap and Glory Supercat Liner seemed the best choice for both colour and staying power. So I spent a mere £6, and used it every day for two months.

Photo borrowed from Soap & Glory website. Look at the nice felt tip applicator.

Photo borrowed from Soap & Glory website. Look at the nice felt tip applicator.

The problem is, I still kind of hate it a bit. And here’s why:

Every time I sweep the felt-tip-style applicator over my eyelid, only a certain amount of product actually goes on. On either side of the felt tip there are two streams of black liner, and in the middle, which should also be black, there lies only flesh-toned disappointment.

In other words, the stuff doesn’t apply properly. Swatch it on paper, your arm, or the back of your hand and it looks fantastic. But try to apply it to an oily pair of eyelids and you’ll struggle. It sort of wipes itself off as it applies, and waiting for it to dry before adding another coat doesn’t really solve the problem either.

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See the gap in the pigment? Annoying.

Pigment-wise, it’s also not perfect. It looks really impressive swatched on paper and on the back of my hand – a rich, pure black – but as soon as it goes onto my eyelids it becomes more of a watercolour-y shade. I think it’s the oil that spreads the pigment out – or perhaps some leftover eye cream. Either way, it doesn’t look as good as my in-store swatch suggested it would. Which is a shame.

All those complaints aside, this isn’t a bad high street eyeliner. I often find that high street liners have quite limp, flimsy applicators, which make applying eyeliner very difficult for beginners. Soap and Glory’s offering, by contrast, is straight, firm, and easy to use – it’s just like drawing on your eyeliner with a felt tip pen.

Likewise, despite my complaints, this formula is quite good. I’ve tried Collection and Rimmel liquid liners before, and in both cases the formula was so cheap and nasty it made my eyelids burn a bit. Bleurgh. I had no such stinging while I waited for Soap and Glory’s formula to dry, so that’s a plus.

So I guess the conclusion is: if you want to buy this eyeliner, make sure your eye cream has fully sunk in before you apply it. And maybe check your lids for oil. However, if you’ve got normal to dry skin, you’re onto a winner with this one.

Latest In Beauty: Glamour Beauty Power List 2014 Box

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I gave in guys. I ordered it. There was so much pretty. And it only cost me £15.99 for a year’s subscription to the digital version of Glamour, AND all this beauty stuff:

  • Maybelline Stripped Nudes Lipstick in “710 Sultry Sand” (full size, shades vary)
  • James Read Sleep Mask Tan (25ml)
  • Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser (30ml), with muslin cloth
  • Philip Kingsley Daily Damage Defence (60ml)
  • Bourjois Volume 1 Seconde Mascara (full size)
  • 10 Eyeko Eye Makeup Remover Wipes
  • Laura Mercier Foundation Primer (30ml)

It was worth it. Je ne regrette rien.

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Well, je regrette un peu. There was some difficulty with the Maybelline Stripped Nudes lipstick. Being a pale nude, it made me look a bit ‘2002 Page 3 Girl.’ In fact, it would have served me very well for the ‘Makeup Through the Ages‘ collaboration that we did a few months back, where I based my look on S Club 7. Jo O’Meara LOVED nude lips. But it wasn’t really for me.

I’m also a bit fearful of the James Read Sleep Mask Tan. I’ve been exfoliating the shiz out of my face of late, so would probably be able to avoid any patchy tanning disasters, but I’m scared. I don’t fake tan my body, so there’s a strong risk that this might look a bit weird on me.

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HOWEVER. The other stuff. Oh wow, the other stuff. The main reason I ordered this box was to try the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser, and it did not disappoint. It removes makeup easily, and makes me feel like I’m in a spa. It’s made my evening routine 100 times more relaxing.

You know how some Chinese restaurants give you a hot flannel for your hands, between courses? And how you always want to press them to your face, but it’s slightly inappropriate? The hot cloth cleansing method answers that need. In the most soothing of ways. Sigh.

The Philip Kingsley Daily Damage Defence is also gorgeous. I can’t say much about the long-term damage defence yet, but after I spritz this on, it detangles my hair and makes it feel lovely and soft after a blow dry. It also smells beautifully sweet, so that’s a plus. Thumbs up there.

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As for the Bourjois Volume 1 Seconde mascara, although it certainly takes more than un seconde to apply, I’m pretty pleased with it. If you’re careful to apply it right from the roots, it fans out, lengthens, and of course volumises lashes beautifully, without making them clumpy. Hopefully you can see that from my right eye in the picture! The only downside? I live in fear of poking myself in the eye with it. That brush is capable, man.

I’m yet to try out the Eyeko Eye Makeup Remover Wipes, but I use their eyeliner pen almost daily, so I have no doubt that these wipes will remove that brilliantly. That’s what they say, isn’t it? Whoever makes the makeup will make the best remover for it. If they know how the liner or mascara is made, they also have the secrets of the best way to break it down. Cleverrrr. Anyway, I’m saving these wipes for when I need a quick makeup-removing fix – i.e. when I stagger in after a night out. Because I’m classy like that.

Finally, we have the Laura Mercier Foundation Primer. I’ve been using the oil free version of this for a few months, so it’ll be good to have a mini back-up for when I’m travelling light. I’m also intrigued to see the difference between the oil free and normal versions. Although the original foundation primer is not specifically made for greasy skin, I’ve found with some products that the original can work better than the special versions. We’ll have to see if that’s true in this case!

Have you ever ordered a Latest In Beauty box? What are they like? As this box is dedicated to Glamour’s Beauty Power List 2014, do you think these products accurately represent the best in their categories? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Go on, drop us a comment.

The BEST Eyebrow Pencil for Blondes – Mac Veluxe Brow Liner Review

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I have found it.

I have found the perfect eyebrow pencil for blondes.

I have found the perfect eyebrow pencil for blondes and it doesn’t make us look ginger.

Oh. My. Giddy. Aunt.

There’s nothing wrong with having ginger eyebrows, of course, but if you hair isn’t ginger it can be distracting. My natural hair colour is quite a dark brunette, but weirdly my eyebrows are an ashy blonde, so I struggled to find the right eyebrow pencil for ages.

Eventually, I went to film the quiz show Pointless in London with my Dad (it won’t be on telly until the Autumn I’m afraid!) and the makeup artist used Mac’s Veluxe Brow Liner in ‘Strawberry Blonde’ on me.

When I saw the name of the shade, I instantly thought “This is going to give me the dreaded gingeybrow again”, especially as a strawberry blonde is essentially a redhead.

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Left: eyebrow coloured in with the Mac pencil. Right: bare brow. It’s made my eyebrow slightly darker so it stands out more, but still looks natural.

Instead, it was the perfect light brown – not too grey and ashy, not too red, not too dark for blondes, but enough to make your brows stand out. It was absolutely ideal. So naturally, I went out and bought it afterwards.

After a good couple of months using it, I thought it was about time for a review. Below, I’ve outlined (accidental excellent pun) a few pros and cons of this saviour of blonde eyebrows:

PROS:

  • The Colour is Just Right: I’ve found with a few drugstore pencils that the lighter tones either go too grey, too dark, or too red. It was really difficult to get a decent pencil for blonde brows, until this one came along. Rejoice!
  • Blends nicely
  • Good colour pay off & not too waxy: it’s totally matte and has a nice soft, almost powdery texture
  • Glides on smoothly without getting chalky
  • Double-ended product with a handy spooley brush on one end. This is good quality, with lots of soft bristles to comb and neaten your brows, whilst blending the product evenly through the hair for a softer, more natural look. Lovely.
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Both eyebrows done. I’m not very good at applying it – especially not first thing in the morning – but you get the idea!

CONS:

  • Breaks Easily: It sharpens well, but a few times I’ve sharpened it and the “lead” (as it were) has fallen out of the top of the pencil. It must have been beaten up a bit in the store, because the product seems to be broken in several places. Shame.
  • Can’t really sharpen it to a fine point: this doesn’t matter so much for me, as it’s more about filling in with colour, but for those who like to do fine lines just like hairs with their eyebrow pencil, it might be tricky.
  • Price: It’s normal for Mac, but I still winced a bit. £15.50. Still, would purchase again.

Which eyebrow pencils do you prefer to use? This is my first high-end choice, so I’d be interested to hear of any others – or of course any drugstore gems!

Makeup Through The Ages Beauty Blogger Collaboration: The 2000’s

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 As we all know, there ‘aint no party like an S Club party. And in the Year 2000, S Club 7 seriously brought it. Channelling a look favoured by early noughties J.Lo and numerous other pop stars, they donned their faux furs and white polonecks, their hair serum and their beige lipgloss, and filmed the video for ‘Never Had A Dream Come True’, the official Children in Need single for 2000.

I am now kind of sad that I don’t fit into the afghan coat I had when I was 11.

(Google it if you don’t know what that is).

I feel as if this video, all shimmer and gloss and sparkly snowflakes, epitomises the noughties era rather well. Once the Spice Girls had split, S Club 7 became my favourite band, so it only seemed right to base my contribution to the Makeup Through The Ages Beauty Blogger Collaboration on them.

This Collaboration, by the way, is the brainchild of Brittany The Beauty Deputy, who is always coming up with great ideas for tags and collabs! I’d say this is her biggest plan yet – a total of 11 beauty bloggers are involved, covering The Ancient Egyptians, Futuristic Makeup, and every decade between 1920 and the Present Day. I’ll post links to all their blogs at the end, so do go and have a look – I can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with!

Anyway, on to the post!

Here is the kit I used to become a weird hybrid of Rachel, Tina, Hannah, and Jo: 

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Eyes: 

Too Faced ‘A Few of My Favourite Things’ Palette, with eyeshadow in ‘Snowflakes’, ‘Crisp Apple Strudel’, and ‘Cream Coloured Ponies’; Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner in Black; Too Faced Better than Sex Mascara; Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in ‘010 Silver’; Mac Veluxe Brow Liner in ‘Strawberry Blonde’.

Base: 

Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation in ‘Cream Ivory’; Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in ‘Cool Medium 2’; Benefit High Beam Highlighter; Bourjois Délice De Poudre Bronzer in ‘Peaux claires/médianes 51’.

Lips: 

Erm…a bit more Laura Mercier Foundation (use a pale nude or beige lipstick if you’re more sensible than me); Benefit ‘Ticket to Glossytown’ Lip Glosses in ‘Life on the A List’ (pale pink) and ‘Nude-Tude’ (nudey glitter).

Brushes:

Real Techniques Eye Starter Kit (slanted, fluffy, detail, and crease); Real Techniques Blusher Brush; Real Techniques Stippling Brush (for foundation); Real Techniques Setting Brush (for concealer).

Extras:

Clarins Démaquillant Express Instant Eye Make-Up Remover; Johnson’s Cotton Buds.

And here is the process!

EYES:

I actually did this look in the wrong order.  I thought I’d practice the eye makeup and ended up going “sod it, let’s photograph the whole post,” so I did my eyes before my base, which is unusual for me.

Step 1: Snowflakes Sweep

Anyway, the first thing I did was sweep some Too Faced eyeshadow in ‘Snowflakes’ over my entire lids, all the way up to the brow bone and making sure to cover the inner corners of the eye. The S Club girls and most other pop stars were covered in shimmery eyeshadow from around 1999-2006, so it seemed best to go the whole hog too.

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Step 2: Crease Shadow

Next, I used my Real Techniques Crease Brush, from the Starter Set for Eyes, and put a bit of Crisp Apple Strudel in and around my crease.

I was trying to copy Jo’s look for this – as she seems to be wearing a similar brown shimmery eyeshadow in the video. I also ran a little bit of this shadow under my lower eyelashes, using the slanted brush from the Real Techniques set. You can also use the little detailer brush for this, if you prefer to use your slanted brush for brows.

Step 3: White Line

I noticed that Tina and Jo seem to have white lines of shadow which extended a couple of millimetres above their upper lash line, which looked rather fetching, so I thought I’d try that too.

I hunted around from my white kohl pencil from Rimmel, but I couldn’t find it anywhere, so instead I wet my Real Techniques fine liner brush from the Starter Set, and used a bit of Too Faced ‘Cream Coloured Ponies’ eyeshadow. It worked ok, but for a less fiddly option, you should probably use a pencil liner or eyeshadow pencil!

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Step 4: Black Line

Right. I actually did this twice because the first time I made it too thick, and it looked more like a 50’s or 60’s look than an S Club Party. If the line thickness changes between pictures, now you know why ;)

Handy tip: if you are in possession of a good eye makeup remover, dip a cotton bud in it and deal with eyeliner mistakes that way. It saves you taking everything off and starting again! I did that with my Clarins Démaquillant Express Instant Eye Make-Up Remover and it reduced the eyeliner to a more era-appropriate level, and I hardly had to redo my eyeshadow. Yay!

Anyway, to recreate Tina’s look, I did a very narrow line all around the eye, including the inner and outer corners, using my Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner in Black. I also paid a little more attention to the outer corners, making points rather than flicks to imitate Hannah’s makeup.

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Step 5: The Waterline, Mascara & Brows

Once again, I would have liked to have a white kohl pencil on hand to brighten up my waterline for this look. Instead, I used Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in 010 Silver. This always makes my eyes go red because of the glitter, but it does the job for recreating the ‘Never Had A Dream Come True’ look.

I then used Too Faced ‘Better Than Sex’ mascara on my top and bottom lashes, and the Mac Veluxe Brow Liner on my brows, blending with the attached spooley brush.

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Tuhduuuuh. Sorry about the roots. I’m going to the salon this weekend!

FACE:

Step 1: Foundation

I didn’t use a primer for this, and whacked Laura Mercier’s Silk Crème Foundation straight onto my skin, blending it in with the Real Techniques Stippling Brush.

I decided not to use powder, because I didn’t need this look to last for too long, and the girls all have such silky skin in the video – a mattifying powder wouldn’t work.

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Step 2: Concealer

I whacked Collection’s Lasting Perfection Concealer pretty much everywhere (under eyes, around nose, on blemishes)  as I’m tired and blotchy and Rachel Stevens is perfect.  I used the Real Techniques Setting Brush to blend it all in.

Step 3: Highlighter

I had a bit of fun with this one. This isn’t quite the usual shape in which I’d apply my highlighter, but the noughties were all about the dewy skin, so I just copied whichever parts of Jo’s, Hannah’s, Tina’s, and Rachel’s faces caught the light. I then blended it in with my setting brush.

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Step 4: Bronzer

I decided to skip blusher on this occasion, as I couldn’t really detect any pinky tones on the girls’ cheeks. Instead, I went for the bronzer-as-blusher look, using the Bourjois Délice de Poudre bronzer.

LIPS:

Step 1: Degradation

The problem with beige lip colour being popular in the noughties was that it made everybody look a little bit dead.

Because I still remember this time with fear and apprehension, I wasn’t really willing to spend money on a colour that wouldn’t suit me. So what did I do? I made like the scene kids and preteen Jack Wills fans of the mid-noughties and put foundation on my lips instead!

It could have been worse…

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Step 2: Lipgloss

This was better. I applied a combination of the Benefit lipglosses onto my lips to make them paler and less pink. Beige, glossy lips is a look that a lot of people rocked in the noughties – most particularly JLo – so I felt I should give it a go!

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And that’s the finished look! I couldn’t help but do a historically-accurate high-angled Myspace pose! Complete with camera arm, of course.

I definitely don’t like this look, it makes my eyes look small, my nose look big, and my lips look weird. But hey ho, the noughties were a dark time for makeup and fashion, and a shining beacon decade for pop music. What can you do?

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If you’d like to have a look at the posts by the rest of the bloggers involved in the collaboration, you can find the links below. I hope you enjoyed this post and am looking forward to seeing the other contributions!

Collab Love

Effie xx

Ancient Egyptians/Cleopatra – Angela from Your Beauty Whisperer

1920’s – Soph from Little Bit Soph

1930’s – Meagan from A Beauty Obsession

1940’s – Olivia from Eye Have A Lot of Feelings (Iconic Noughties Film Reference in her Blog Title!)

1950’s – Heather from Coconut & Cotton 

1960’s – Brittany from The Beauty Deputy

1970’s – Michelle from Pretty in the East 

1980’s – Christina from a casual beauty

1990’s – Jacquelyn from the Little Scottish Corner

2000’s – Stephanie Wright

Present Day – Barbe from Fashionista in Surburbia

Futuristic  – Becky from MakeupandFreckles

Now have some more S Club:

This is from a TV show they had called LA 7, in which they played themselves and did cool S Club things.

There was also Miami 7 (which I had on VHS), Hollywood 7, and Viva S Club. AMAZING dancing all round!

 

June Beauty and Skincare Favourites

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Lush ‘Coalface’ Cleanser

My friend picked up a sample of this for me, and I’m sorry to say that I didn’t really expect much, as I’m not 100% comfortable with the idea of bars of soap on my face. To my surprise though, I was really impressed! Despite the rather uncomfortable title, this product lathers up nicely and takes all the makeup off my face in a single wash. Including eye makeup. What?! Thanks to the little exfoliating bits of charcoal, it’s also handy for preventing breakouts. Goodbye, expensive cleansers and cheap, harsh, drugstore dupes: I’ve made a new friend!

St Ives Apricot Scrub

The old favourite strikes again! Although I’ve tried a few high-end exfoliators, this supermarket find remains firmly in my arsenal. I’ve been using it every other day whilst I’m in the shower – the steam opens up your pores and makes for better de-gunking – and it’s kept my breakouts to a minimum. That said, it might just be that the antibiotics are finally working. Either way, it’s still brilliant. You shouldn’t use it quite so often as I do if you have dry or sensitive skin, but for oil monsters like me, this usage level is fine.

Too Faced ‘Better Than Sex’ Mascara 

I won’t go into the details of the title of this product. It’s unnecessarily provocative and creates unrealistic expectations! However, it is quite good. This volumises, lengthens, and separates my lashes without clumping, so it’s been used rather a lot this month! That said, this is the mini version, and the beauty grapevine tells me that when you fall in love with a sample-sized Too Faced mascara, the full-sized product is disappointing. Hmm. Only time will tell!

Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner

This came free with Glamour magazine for the second June running, and naturally I had to snap some up! It went straight back into my top 7 as a result. The felt tip-style applicator makes it really easy to apply, and it’s really good if you want to create a very fine, subtle line just above your lashes.

Vichy Dermablend Foundation 

I went off this foundation for a little while, as although the coverage was fantastic and it feels really light on the skin, the lasting power wasn’t quite enough for my very oily face. However, in the last month I’ve been teaming it with my Laura Mercier Oil Free Primer, and it works a treat! Hallelujah! And that brings me on to…

Laura Mercier Oil Free Primer

I’ll do a proper review of this soon, I promise. I’ve been using this most days, which fills me with guilt as it’s quite expensive, but I feel as if I can’t live without it. It really does make my face last for so much longer! It’s also provides a great opportunity for using up the foundations I don’t really like, as it makes them sit better on my face. Jolly good!

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EOS Lip Balm in ‘Strawberry Sorbet’

I’ve been keeping this lip balm on my desk at work this month, and as a result have been using it compulsively. It smells delicious – a bit like raspberry ripple ice cream – and my lips are now permanently soft. Awesome! Thank you Brittany!

What have been all of your favourite products this month? Are you moving into your summer makeup yet? Have you fallen in love with a product with a rude name, which you must awkwardly mumble when people ask you what you’ve been using? Let me know!

Effie xx