Notice anything new? Do you like my new layout and my silly picture? My dad and I had fun taking derpy pictures of me with a piece of toast! hahaha.
I've mentioned before about wanting to a post about my current favourite beauty items, for those that are interested. I'm working on getting my beauty blog overhauled, which is going to include deleting all the old posts because I don't think any of them are particularly useful anymore, as so many of the brands I used to use are no longer cruelty free. Also, I want that blog to be totally vegan, as this one is and for some reason I didn't do that when I first set it up (because I still have a tonne of pregan makeup that isn't vegan!).
So if you would be interested in a vegan beauty blog, there is a link up above now to it, but please note that until tomorrow sometime, (Monday 10 Feb), the posts are old and out of date. I'll edit this post once the new version is live and also post about it here and on my new blogz facebook page. Come follow me and keep up to date on posts on this blog and Lovelipstick, when it is back up and running. (If you're not a facebooker - fear not, I have other social media stuffs too ... check out the links on the sidebar on the right-hand side of this blog.)
OK I'm babbling, on with the favourites. Disclaimer: All the products below are vegan as far as I know! I have either had confirmation from the company themselves, or the product is marked vegan at the point of sale or on the packaging. Any exceptions will be noted.
Note: prices quoted are Superdrug's prices, unless otherwise stated and if not Superdrug, it will be the UK supplier that I buy through. OK, onwards. Let's start with my favourite thing.
Bourjois Happy Light Foundation (£11.99), Concealer (£8.99) and Primer (£10.99)
I should start by saying that Bourjois do not test on animals. However, I am still unsure of their actual affiliation with Chanel, who sell in China so do test. I'm not sure if they are owned by Chanel or if they are just manufactured in the same lab, but the products are very similar. I'm still investigating this.
EDIT: I've since found out that Chanel & Bourjois are owned by the same company. So although Bourjois don't actually animal test, they are the sister company of a company that do (Chanel is sold in China, so required by law to test). Hopefully this information is enough for you to decide if you want to still buy Bourjois.
Anyway, I am a massive fan of Bourjois and their foundations and last year they came out with Happy Light and I adore it. It has a lovely dewy but not sparkly finish and the primer is just gorgeous, as you can see by how much I've used. There are 2 primers, one for dry/normal skin and one for oily/combination. I am dryer and I love this primer so much. I use it every day!
Also, the concealers are fabulous. I have 2 shades; 21 Ivoire, which I use under my eyes to conceal my dark shadows and also on the high points of the face to highlight. I love the texture and it does a pretty good job of concealing my shadows. I also have shade 22 Beige Rose, which I use on the rest of my face for concealer blemishes.
Collection Cosmetics Lasting Perfection Concealer (£4.19)
Barry M Lash Modelling Mascara (£6.19)
Barry M is, in my opinion, the best point of call in the UK drugstores to find vegan mascara. They have a couple of varieties but the Lash Modelling Extra Black is my top pick. I do like the Lash Vegas that they brought out last year (maybe?) but it can be quite clumpy if you are not fastidious about wiping off the wand. Speaking of wands, I really like this type of plasticy fine wand - it is good for my naturally clumpy lashes!
Sleek iDivines (£7.99)
I love love LOVE Sleek's iDivines (eyeshadow palettes). However... they are not on Sleek's vegan list and I was unsure why. So I googled every ingredient and nothing was flagging up as animal based. When I emailed them, their response was that it was made on the same line as non-vegan products! Doh... So anyway that makes them vegan enough for me!
But back to why I love them. They are smooth, they are really pigmented, they blend well, they have a tonne of options and they are less than a tenner! Such great value and they really are good.
My 2 little gripes with Sleek's palettes are 1, that the names of the shadows come on a plastic insert, which is super annoying. And 2, that they come with a foam eyeshadow applicator - come on now, Sleek, It's 2014...... NO ONE USES THOSE!!** This basically sums up how I feel about foam eyeshadow applicators:
But I'll let it go, because aside from those 2 little niggles, these really are great palettes. The one pictured above is the newest palette, it's called the Garden of Eden palette and sadly it's limited edition. It's gorgeous. I think that their Au Naturel Palette and Storm Palettes are the 2 biggest must haves though, for any neutral or smoky eye look.
*If you're sitting there thinking, "hang on there, Sal, I use those crap eyeshadow fings"! Well then you should be ashamed of yourself buddy, consider yourself chastised! Throw them out.... Throw them out now; then go look at my recommendations below for brushes and keep your eye out on my beauty blog for a post about my favourite brushes and their uses.
Sugarpill Chromalust Loose Eyeshadows (£8.98 from Cocktail Cosmetics)
For loose eyeshadows, I think you can't beat Sugarpill's Chromlusts. Not all their pressed shadows are vegan, but the ones that are, are clearly labelled. But ALL their loose ones are vegan YAY and they do some seriously gorgeous colours. The pic on the top is the ElektroCute Collection that was released last year. They are neon and seriously glittery! (A word of advice, do your eyemakeup first when using these because you will get a shittonne of glittery fallout that will ruin your foundation!). The bottom pic is of my other 3 favourite colours, L-R they are Lumi, Goldilux and Darling. Lumi is THE most gorgeous shimmery highlight that reflects teal. So pretty.
OK, let's move on to
Barry M Gelly Polishes (£3.99)
I have to admit, the Barry M Gelly polishes were actually my second favourite polish over the last year, but I've recently discovered that CND are owned by Revlon, who still currently sell in China, so Vinylux can no longer be top of my list.
But that's not to take anything away from Barry M, because I absolute LOVE these polishes. They dry fast, go on smooth and dry to a lovely shiny finish (they are meant to have the appearance of a gel polish, hence the name). Also, for a regular polish, they last pretty well on me. They come in a tonne of colours and I must admit, I have most of them. I use them on my toes mainly as I do wear Gelicure Gel Polish on my fingers 99% of the time.
Nubar Gelicure Gel Polish
(Gelicure is a professional product - you'll neeed to look for your nearest Gelicure Salon for prices)
I kind of intimated above, that regular polish doesn't really last on me. It lasts fine on toes but fingers, 24 hrs is a long lasting polish! Some of you may know that I quit my job at the end of last year and have opened a beauty room. One of my treatments is gel polish manicures/pedicures. I researched long and hard for the brand I wanted to go with and found Nubar. I was already a fan of their polishes and I love that all their products are cruelty free AND vegan! YAY. I tried it out at a trade event and decided to invest in the product and the training and I'm very glad I did. If my nails are ever looking crap and breaking off, 9 times out of 10 it's because I haven't had Gelicure on for a week or so and without that extra strength it provides, my nails just break. The pic above is a recent manicure I did on myself.
With correct aftercare, a gel manicure should last 2 weeks without chipping and with a good tech that won't over-buff or incorrectly apply/remove your gel polish, there should be no damage to the natural nails.
Let's move onto
(prices vary by product, available from EveTaylor.com)
For years and YEARS I used Liz Earle's skincare products and they are great, they really are. But once they became affiliated with Avon, who animal test, I didn't really want to keep buying them, even though they do still have their leaping bunny certification. Also, their cleanser has beeswax in. So I looked for an alternative and found Eve Taylor at a beauty trade show. At the time, I was starting to set up my beauty business and had bought Eve Taylor's mobile skincare kit, on the recommendation of a lot of therapists and online reviews. But when I decided against doing facials in my salon, I kept the products for my makeup kit and decided to try them out on myself. I found that they were great and I really liked them on my skin. I use the soothing cleanser, toner and moisture cream. I also have the soothing moisture lotion, which has a lighter texture than the cream and is good for me in the summer, when my skin is not so dry. I also use the advanced eye treatment serum.
I use the cleanser the same way that I used to use the Liz Earle (massage in then remove with a muslin cloth soaked in hand-hot tap water). It's not marketed as a hot cloth cleanser but that's the way I feel all cleansers work best for me!
Eve Taylor confirmed to me that these products are vegan, however I cannot vouch for their entire line. But they were very quick to respond to my email asking about vegan suitability, even over the Christmas period, so if you're thinking of trying them out and don't have dry skin, give them an email!
Hurraw Lip Balm
(£3.99 from CutECOsmetics.com)
This was a tricky one because I'm addicted to lip balm and I always have a bunch of different ones on the go. But this one wins it for me, both brand and flavour! Honorable mention also goes to Crazy Rumours, because those are also fab and I heard that some Holland & Barrett stores have these now!
Superdrug B. Pure Micellar Water (£2.47)
(this is the one picture i had to borrow from Superdrug, as mine just wouldn't come in the right way up for some reason!!)
A while back, beauty bloggers and vloggers alike were abuzz with the fact that Bioderma was now available in the UK. I was excited too but it was brief because I found out it's not cruelty free. When I researched it I discovered it's actually just a micellar water and there's other brands that make these! Including good old Superdrug. I just want to say that I think Superdrug are awesome for making sure all their own brand products are BUAV approved and they also label their products as to whether they're vegetarian or vegan! HURRAH! Why can't all companies do this? Anyway, a while back they came out with a fully vegan skincare and makeup range called B. and it is really rather good.
Micellar water is a makeup remover and I use it to remove my makeup, duh! But yeah, it takes off the majority of whatever's on my face, including most eye makeup (it struggles with super heavy black liner and mascara) and then I use my Eve Taylor cleanser afterwards. If I'm having a super lazy night, as long as I use this and some moisturiser, I'm happy enough to go to bed!
Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Shower Gel (£6.50), Body Buttercream (£10.50) and Body Scrub (£8) - available from Boots
I never thought I'd ever find a shower gel that I love more than my Lush Snow Fairy! I still love that, but it's only available at Christmas. Boo! This line is available all year round and it smells, forking DELICIOUS! I'm absolutely obsessed with it. If you like sweet but citrusy smells, you have to get this. HAVE to. Soap & Glory also confirmed that all 3 products are vegan, as I wasn't 100% sure from their vegan list.
Marks and Spencer True Red Perfume (£12 for 100ml)
Oh perfume! If you are a fan of perfume and you only buy cruelty free products, it's super friggin hard to find something decent. Almost all the designer brands are sold in China and so even if they swear blind their products are cruelty free, it cannot be guaranteed.
Enter Marks and Spencer. They have a tonne of different perfumes, all BUAV approved, all vegan and some very very nice indeed. Some are disgusting, but that is the way with all brands.
My favourite is their True Red perfume, because I love that kind of musky, jasminey scent! The price above is the normal price, but it's currently on M&S's website for £9.60! Which for 100ml of perfume is a bargain, in my book! Also, I have a 10ml handbag sized one that cost me about £3.50 (currently showing as £2.80 on the website) because I love it so much.
Another one I smelled in store the other day was their Autograph Black Amber perfume, which I realllly liked, but they only had a gift set, not just a bottle on it's own. So I'm keeping my eyes peeled for that and hoping it's not a limited edition!
(£12.95 from steamcream.com - I have also seen it in large Tescos)
Steamcream is a lovely, all purpose moisturiser that you can use on face, hands and body. It smells amazing, like lavender (which I usually HATE) and it's very rich and thick so it's great for dry skin. However, it sinks in fast and doesn't leave me sticky. I use it mainly as handcream and I HATE that sticky feeling you sometimes get from thicker creams.
It comes in tonnes of different tin designs, the one pictured was a limited edition Movember tin (I also got a free mini one in the same design when I bought this and I keep that in my handbag). It's great for flying too for handcream but also for when my face starts feeling tight and dry!
Lee Stafford (£various, available in Boots)
I'm going to do a full post on Lee Stafford's products over on my beauty blog so here I'm just gonna talk about my 3 favourite things. Their Argan Oil Heat Defense Spray, Shine Spray and Argan Miracle Oil.
I use the Argan Miracle Oil on my hair when it's wet, after I've brushed it through and then the heat defense before any type of heat styling. If I'm blow drying and straightening or curling one after the other, I use it before both! I really do believe these products have helped get my hair in a much MUCH better condition. My hairdresser has remarked on this several times, how much healthier and shinier my hair is.
This range is cruelty free and is surprisingly vegan friendly. Not 100%, but a very good percentage. (A very lovely lady in their customer services sent me a list of vegan friendly products!) Keep any eye out for a full post if you want to know more.
Tangle Teezer (£10.99 from Boots)
I couldn't talk about hair favourites and not mention the Tangle Teezer. But there's not much to say except that this makes light work of combing out my super knotty hair, without tugging and with minimal breakage. I've been using one for years and can't see me ever giving it up!
Batiste Dry Shampoo (£2.99)
I've tried a few dry shampoos and generally I've thought they were a crap waste of money; but this one actually works! I spray it into my roots in layers, then give my scalp a vigorous rub and then brush it back to tame it. There are tonnes of different flavours but this one's my favourite smell and tin design! hehe. I also love this even when I've just washed my hair, as it adds some volume to my fine, flat hair!
Furless - £various from furless.com.au
Whether you're a naughty foam-tip applicator user, or just someone who wants brilliant, vegan makeup brushes, I would highly recommend checking out Furless' selection. The above is just a selection of the brushes I have from them and I love every single one. See the 3rd from the bottom? Well they sent me that free (they do that, send you a freebie when you buy brushes) and I have since bought 2 more of them for my kit, because it is THE best brush for blending out any eye look I have ever used - including a dark smokey eye! It has a pinched ferrule which means it's slightly flattened so it is also great for packing on colour - WIN WIN!!
Sigma F80 (£15.95) & P80 (£12.95) - available from cocktail cosmetics
I'm giving a special shout-out to these 2 brushes from Sigma. They are the F80 Flat Top Kabuki and the P80 Flat Top Eye Kabuki. I love the F80 for foundation, I really think it is THE best brush I've ever used for buffing out foundation to a flawless finish. The P80 is a smaller version, both have short, densely packed bristles and I love this smaller brush for buffing out concealer and cream eyeshadows.
Not all of Sigma's brushes are vegan, but the product descriptions on Cocktail Cosmetics usually tell you what the bristles are made from!
Other great brands for vegan makeup brushes include Real Techniques, Crownbrush* and BDellium Tools*. (*these brands are not 100% vegan, so check at point of sale for the material of the hairs. Crown has a fully synthetic range called Syntho and all of BDellium's Bambu brushes are vegan - and pretty!)
And so that is it for my current beauty favourites. I know there was a lot there, (and there were way more products I wanted to include but some companies suck at replying to emails!!) so if you've made it to the end, WOO GO YOU! And also, thank you so much for reading.
I hope you enjoyed a bit of a variation in subject and don't worry, if beauty's not your bag, I have foodz to post tomorrow!