Friday, 22 September 2017

First Impressions | Milani Cosmetics

Ever since I started watching YouTube, I've wanted to try something from Milani. Back then it was pretty much impossible to get hold of, but luckily it's now fairly easy to find the brand online in the UK. Thanks to the lovely team at JustMyLook*, I was finally able to try the cult blush I’d been after for years, Luminoso, along with a few other bestsellers.

I have to start by talking about Milani's Baked Blush in Luminoso, which is just as perfect as I imagined. It's a warm peach shade that leaves a beautiful luminous sheen on the skin - thankfully, it's not at all glittery and instead adds a lovely glow. It actually reminds me a little of Hourglass' blushes for the finish it gives, it's very 'lit from within'.

Due to its slightly pink hue, Luminoso will look great on all skin tones. I love it the most when I'm tanned (which is rare, I know) but even when I am my ghostly shade of pale I think it looks stunning. It's a little powdery, but it never appears this way on the skin. To apply, I've actually been using Milani's blush brush. Not hearing anything about Milani's brushes before I wasn't sure what to expect, but wow. Unbelievably soft, this glides product across the skin and it hasn't shed once... not a single hair!

It's the perfect shape and size too for multitasking - it's great for contour and to apply highlight on the cheeks. Somehow, it's turned into my favourite product out of this entire haul and for the price (it's only £14) it's a steal.

The Prep + Set + Go Transparent Face Powder also caught my eye. I have combination skin, so I'm constantly on the hunt for a powder that doesn't make my face look super matte, but can keep my natural oils in control. I usually use RCMA's No Color powder, which is amazing for baking but it can be a little too intense for all over the face.

Weirdly, Milani claim you can use this powder before foundation to blur lines and reduce the size of pores. I tried it once and just found the whole thing a little weird under a liquid - maybe this is something to try with mineral foundation?

Even though I don't prep with this, I have been enjoying it as a setting powder. I have to reapply around 3pm if I put this on before work but it's easy to layer up. It's very fine and feels almost silky to touch, and while it hasn't blown me away it leaves a lovely natural finish and I have noticed the powder  reduces the appearance of the pores on my nose well. My only complaint is how little product you seem to receive. You only get 7g (half of Rimmel's Stay Matte) and I found myself hitting pan really quickly.

The final Milani product I picked up was one of their Amore Matte lip creams. They have around 30 colours, and they smell super sweet like cake mixture (which I can't help but love!) I went for the shade Adorable, and from online swatches I thought this was going to be a lighter nude, but on my lips and with my skin tone it's actually darker than I expected and quite brown. I'd even say there's a hint of grey in there. 

Adorable dried down almost immediately, turning matte after a few seconds. One swipe is enough for an opaque finish but if you even have slightly dry lips you're going to need lip balm underneath. As my lips are on the drier side, I did find I clung slightly to certain patches although it was fine elsewhere. 

It's lightweight and transfer proof - seriously, it's not going anywhere - but one thing I discovered is that it doesn't layer well. It tends to crumble if you apply too much, so once it does begin to fade it's much better to remove it completely and start again. Annoying if you're out all day, but if you're just applying it for the evening it should be fine. 

Overall, I'm pretty pleased with my first Milani haul. I'm 100% picking up more brushes, and I'm eager to try the baked bronzer and a darker shade of the lip creams too!

Becki xo 

*This post contains a PR sample, kindly sent by JustMyLook.

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Better than the Beauty Blender?

From the moment I swapped my foundation brush for a beauty sponge, I've never looked back. Goodbye streaky makeup, hello flawless skin.

It's safe to say it was love at first use with the original Beauty Blender, but at £16 a pop they're not exactly cheap. Since my last Beauty Blender sponge fell apart (RIP... *sob*), I've been on the hunt for the perfect dupe ever since.

Before now, the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion sponge has been my go-to. However EcoTools released their Perfecting Blender Duo around April, after hearing some of my favourite bloggers rave about the set, I decided to pick them up for myself. The duo costs £9.99 and it's cruelty-free, latex-free and made of 70% plant-based materials!

A p p l i c a t i o n
I've been completely converted by largest, dark green sponge. It's soft, bouncy and blends everything from my BB cream to liquid bronzer seamlessly without removing any makeup underneath. When it comes to the finish of my makeup, I can't notice a difference from when I used my Beauty Blender but I do think it soaks up slightly more makeup (but not as much as the Real Techniques sponge!)

The smaller sponge is a lot firmer, even when wet. I only reach for it when I'm baking underneath my eyes to be honest, but it is brilliant for doing that. Otherwise, I tend to use the larger of the two on a daily basis.

S h a p e
It's immediately obvious the EcoTools sponges are a different shape compared to the Beauty Blender. Both have a round base, as well as a flat edge and wedge-like tip which is really useful for baking underneath the eyes and/or defining my contour.

While they're certainly different, I quite like the addition of the flat edges. It did take a while to get used to at first but now I'm a big fan!

V e r d i c t
I've actually had my EcoTools sponges for almost five months now, and I've only just started to see a tear in the largest sponge despite washing it (almost) every day. I'm seriously impressed by how long it lasted, and I'll definitely be picking another one up once it's time to do so.

I have noticed EcoTools sell the larger sponge on its own in Ulta though, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed it comes to the UK! I would rather just buy that for less, rather than the duo.

Have you tried the Perfecting Blender Duo? I'd love to know what your favourite makeup sponge is too!
Becki xo

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