Ciaté London Creme Nail Polish in shade Fade to Greige | secondblonde

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Fade to Greige by Ciaté London is a colour that I wouldn’t normally go for, it arrived in my September Glossy Box. That’s one of the reasons I love a beauty box as it introduces me to new colours/ways of beauty – seeing as I’m a creature of habit it’s easy for me to stay in my comfort zone.

Ciaté London is a luxury make-up brand that’s won an impressive 24 awards, I best know them for their pretty looking polishes however this is the first time I’ve tried one.

The bottle is a flat shape which is really comfortable to hold (or if like me hold between your knees on your lap while painting your nails in from of the TV) It’s also very pretty looking with their trademark black bow. I love that it’s really instagramable and practical at the same time. The lid is nice and long providing a great tool for effortless easy strokes every time. The brush bristles are flat which I found very easy to use and hands down the quickest application ever! I’m very impressed!!

The formula is a great consistency gliding on evenly it’s so pigmented I was almost tempted to do just one coat. I ended up doing two for perfection. The colour is hard to capture in a photo as it looks so different in different lighting. The best way to describe it is a violet greyish/brown nude. It’s very flattering on my skin tone I should imagine it will suit all. It’s long wearing as it lasted for 6 full days without wearing off or chipping, only on day 7 it started to wear off the tips.

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Ok my paint job isn’t the best I know but I’m giving this polish a big thumbs up and the colour is a great addition to my nail polish collection. You can check out Ciaté London here this full size nail polish is £9 from the creme collection.

Secondblonde x

 

 

 

 Gel Lab Pro | AW16 “Wild Thing” | Deborah Lippmann

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I fancied a change to my usual choice of colour and opted for a deep sea green/blue colour by Deborah Lippmann. It’s called Wild Thing and is from the new AW16 collection of the Gel Lab Pro range.

My first choice of winter nails will always be a berry/wine shade – much like the iconic shade of Rouge Noir by Chanel, Famously worn by Uma Thurman in the cult film Pulp fiction (which happens to be one of my all time favs) Anyway I’m rambling, back to the current…

The formula of DL Gel Lab Pro polish is perfect, the colour is very pigmented, the application brush is a flat one which I don’t love as I find it to be quite wide making it difficult to get close to the nail bed and sides. I prefer a round brush. The colour is nice and dark after two coats I really love it! It’s much darker than how it looks in the bottle and that’s a good thing.

The finish is high shine and the icing on the cake is that it’s free from 7 nasties. In fact here is a list of all the good ingredients to deliver health, wear and shine:

Health – biotin, keratin, aucoumea, rice protein, evening primrose, green tea extract

Wear – bamboo, nonychosine f

Shine – nylon, carnauba wax

My Verdict This luxury nail product lives up to it’s expectations. I used the DL Hard Rock nail strengthener base and top coat. Just one of my nails had a very slight chip after 3 days wear (which I patched up) however the rest of my nails continued to look good and chip free for 6 days. Today is day 7 and they have started wearing off on the tips and I have a nail bed regrowth as my nails grow pretty quick.

I really like this nail polish, check it out online here and use code DAZZLE and get 15% off your order.

Secondblonde x

 

3 Favourite Hand Creams For 3 Occasions | secondblonde

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It’s approaching that time of year when the air outside is cooler and the heating is on inside and my hands start to suffer, not to mention our obsession with frequently washing our hands or using anti-bacterial gels.

Here’s 3 of my favourite hand creams which all have different qualities which I use for different reasons, some I use plentiful and some sparingly but that’s just based on cost, the more expensive hand creams I tend to use as “treatments” as they include luxury ingredients and are quite pricey.

Dr Sebagh – High Maintenance Anti-ageing care – prevents the first sign of ageing. Leaves my hands with a matte finish which look and feel soft, feels like I am wearing a glove. I keep this one on my dressing table as a “as I leave the house” and “before bed” hand cream. Read my review of High Maintenance here

Soap and Glory – Hand Dream A 5-in-1 hand cream encourages cell renewal which contains ultra nourishing oils. It’s highly fragranced with the original S&G scent, it absorbs quickly. This is my “throw in my hand bag” and apply during the day if I remember hand cream. I’m not sure how effective it is as a treatment but it certainly softens my hands after a hand wash.

Aurelia – Aromatic Repair & Brighten Perfect for pigmentation and highly moisturising. does not contain any synthetic ingredients with key ingredients such as Sea Daffodile, Baobab and Red Algae. This is my “hand treatment” treat kind of cream when I have time for an experience – the essential oils are very calming. Read my review of Aromatic Repair & Brighten here

So there you have it, my 3 rotating hand creams…what are you favourites?

Second blonde x

New Monday + New Week = New Goals | secondblonde

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I try to start each week with new goals and I don’t mean bigger picture life changing goals I just mean I try and start each week with a fresh focus no matter how big or small the goal is. Although working in retail your days/weeks can get a bit jumbled I still stick to Monday as the best day to set myself a personal or professional target.

The target could be a mundane one such as a household task like clearing out/tidying up an area of the house you’ve been putting off, which when it’s done is satisfyingly rewarding. It may be a personal  goal like setting more time aside for yourself or to start a new hobby or catch up with family or a friend you’ve been meaning to make time for. Or it could be dealing with your finances and searching for better deals saving you money annually that can go towards another goal! You get the picture. Whatever you decide to do set yourself a realistic goal. Plan it, write it down and stick to it! It doesn’t have to be complicated just a simple list will do and tick it off as you achieve it…seeing the results can be quite rewarding and give a sense if achievement with a positive impact to do more.

This week my focus is my beauty blog and social media platforms I manage- I’ve been so busy with “life” I’ve somehow neglected my passion but now I’ve set myself some goals my blogging mojo is back!

What are your personal goals this week?

Secondblonde x

Magic Multi-Purpose Oil; Goe Oil 85g |secondblonde

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I’ve completely fallen in love with Goe Oil by Jao Brand. It’s a 100% natural semi-solid all over body oil that turns to a liquid when slightly warmed between your hands, it smells gorgeous as it is lightly scented with Monoi Tiare from Tahiti.

What’s in it? It contains 28 plant, fruit, flower oils & butters as follows…

Jojoba Butter, Sunflower Oil, Jojoba Oil, Rice Bran Oil, Avocado Butter, Grape Seed Butter, Grape Seed Oil, Cocoa Butter, Meadowfoam Seed Oil, Rose Hip Oil, Soy Lecithin, Pumpkin Seed Butter, Mango Butter, Cupuacu Butter, Avocado Oil, Shea Butter, Hemp Seed Oil, Kukuinut Oil, Chamomile Oil, Beeswax, Calendula Oil, Essential Oils, Tocopherol, Vitamin E, Acetate, Rosemary Extra

It’s a multi-tasking product you can use from head to toe, their tagline on their packaging is “HANDS. HAIR. BODY & SOUL” which couldn’t be more true.

Verdict It keeps my skin soft and hydrated all day and is also great for spot applying on dry patches. Some use it as an intensive hair mask which I think will suit very course/curly or frizzy hair which soaks up moisture like a sponge. I tend to use a very tiny amount on dry hair to tame my fly-aways.

* Watch my YouTube review of Goe Oil here

Summary I love this product and already have my second tube ready to go. It costs £35 so it’s not cheap however well worth every penny and a very little goes a long long way, you can buy your here

A customer I recommended it to at work came back two weeks later to personally thank me as she had received so many compliments on the overall look of her skin and being asked “what are you wearing” due to the soft scent. She also has long luscious ringlet naturally curly hair and this has defined her curls making her hair look healthier and shiny. This feedback made my day!

Jao Brand have been kind enough to send me their lip-balm and skin cream to try out what a lucky girl I am! keep posted for my review of them soon.

Thank you for reading, let me know if you’ve tried this oil or any similar as I’d love to hear from you.

Secondblonde x

 

Beauty Blogging Tips For Beginners | secondblonde

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FIND YOUR NICHE What is it about beauty that you you love, find your niche maybe you enjoy painting your nails and have beautiful hands-you can focus on hand/nails. Or perhaps you are passionate about skincare. I’m not saying you can only blog about one type of product,  I’m saying find your own niche so your blog can be truly you.

STYLE & IMAGERY Try to stand out! it’s ok to be inspired by other blogger’s but don’t be tempted to copy anyone. You must stay true to you, start thinking about the theme of your blog layout and the style of photo’s you will take. You can use backdrops and props but keep it simple and in keeping with your personality and why you have chosen to start blogging, then it will be unique to you.

READERS Think about who will read your blog, try to make your content specific to your audience. You may be blogging about beauty in your teens so therefore will need to write in a style that is appealing to that age group.

COMMITMENT Be prepared to put aside a lot of your spare time, blogging looks easy and very glamorous, the truth is it takes up a lot of time, passion and commitment – it’s almost like having a second part-time unpaid job!

FOLLOWERS This surely doesn’t happen overnight, trust me I’ve been blogging for 5 years years. Make sure you are in it for the long haul, after you put in the effort you will see your followers and post hits grow.

FREE STUFF If you start a blog as you think lot’s of companies or PR agency’s will contact you and send you FREE beauty products then think again! If this is the reason you are starting a blog then don’t bother. Your blog will never have the passion and therefore will not have your personality/tone of voice and not be unique.

DOMAINE NAME As a start-up theres no reason for you to spend any money, you can host your blog for free on platforms like blogger or wordpress. I started with blogger and moved to wordpress a few years later. I didn’t invest in my domaine name secondblonde.com until last year, previously I was secondblonde.wordpress.com it was kind of a milestone present to myself. I also felt ready to step it up a little and start promoting myself without feeling shy about it.

EQUIPMENT You don’t need anything fancy, I still use an iphone to take my photo’s and just started doing videos on my iphone for my new YouTube Channel subscribe here I also rely on natural daylight for my images and videos. It does determine when I can shoot however it’s the cheapest and easiest option.

HOW OFTEN SHALL I POST There’s no wrong or right answer here. It will depend on what free time you have around your job/family life etc My only advice is to keep it consistent for example if you blog once a week then stick to it, even better if you can choose the same day of the week for it to go out. Your readers will get into a pattern and check back to see what’s new. When it becomes irregular they stop bothering to come back. *TIP schedule your blog posts in advance (you can choose the date and time it goes out) if you know you will be too busy on the day they normally go out.

MONETISE YOUR BLOG There are lot’s of ways to monetise your blog like using paid adverts or being an affiliate and earning commission if someone purchases a product via your link. I suggest you don’t worry about these things yet as they only accept applicants that meet their stats requirements like number of followers/traffic etc I’m only starting to explore these avenues now and have yet to make my first penny!

NETWORK NETWORK NETWORK This should be an obvious one, make sure you are active on social media. I use Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. It’s advisable that you have the same name on your platforms so you are easy to find and with the same themes/logos/profile pics etc Don’t be shy to promote yourself on all of these platforms, after all if you don’t shout out about it then how will anyone read your posts! Starting off sharing it with family/friends is a good way to gain confidence and give you a boost when they have positive feedback – also they will be really honest which is always a good thing.

THERE YOU GO! GET OUT THERE, GET INSPIRED AND GET BLOGGING….

I hope you have found his post useful, if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask. You can also leave your links in the comments below, I always love to see new talent.

Good Luck

Secondblonde x

Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy (longwear nail enamel)

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This revlon nail polish has been knocking around in my nail polish drawer for yonks! I was given it as a PR sample and as much as I appreciated it, it wasn’t my normal choice of colour as it’s a strong teal with a slight shimmer of silver gliter. I forgot about it until today…

It’s mani monday and it’s freezing cold outside, while I take off my berry coloured polish I delve around in my drawer for a colour I’ve not worn in a while when I spot this again.

It’s a longwear polish (will report back on that later in the week) which mimic’s the coverage and pigmentation of a gel polish. It’s quite thick however really easy to apply. The brush is wide and flat which I thought would be tricky to get my polish to the sides but it was actually easier. The two coats of polish went on evenly, I would even go as far to say the applicaion almost looks professional.

I’m really impressed with the results and will have a look at other shades in the range. I haven’t bought a revlon polish since the early 1990’s if I’m honest, the last one I got was Revlon Nail Enamel in Pink Nude (still available) which was the Essie Sugar Daddy of it’s time.

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It states that you do not need a base coat however I still used one because the colour of the polish is so dark. I finished with a top coat (not pictured) and massaged cuticle oil on my cuticles.

I’m surprised how much I like this colour, it suits my skin tone and is really fresh after all the christmay red shades. The subtle metallic glitter in it is also quite nice giving it added sparkle if you look really closely. I hate shimmery polishes and love glitter but find glitter polishes are a bummer to remove so this is a perfect compromise.

Have you used any of Revlon’s Colorstay Gel Envy nail polishes? I would love to hear about them and your experiences.

Secondblonde x

HAPPY 5th BIRTHDAY TO MY BLOG! 

My little ol’ beauty blog turns 5 today! 2015 has been a good year for my blog, I hit my highest views per hour seeing a steady rise of followers. It’s your continued support that motivates me to write posts sharing my beauty experiences with you.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts as much as I enjoy creating them!

secondblonde x

Review: Elegant Touch Express Press-On Instant Manicure (no glue needed)

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I attended a hair event last night and needed to transform my daytime look to evening one as the dress code was Evening Wear I needed polished nails to go with my cocktail dress. I didn’t have time to paint my bare nails so decided to pop into Boots to see what stick on nails they had…I don’t really do fake nails.

I came across these press on nails  in my favourite colour which is timeless and compliments my skin tone. This hue is called “Polished Garnet” I thought they would look nice when sipping my champagne on arrival whilst doing small talk with fellow hairdressy people.photo 2

The packaging is cute, a container shaped like a nail polish bottle. What I really liked is that they are pre-glued as I didn’t have too much time to apply them also I wasn’t at home. I applied them in about 5 mins (while drinking a glass a of wine in a bar) waiting for my friend Paul to arrive before going on to the event together.

These press-on nails were very easy to apply, first you select each size then peel off the protective layer revealing a gel like glue, press each one on your nail from the cuticle. It also contains a wipe to clean your natural nails to prepare them for the adhesive to fully stick.

The sizing wasn’t perfect for me but fine for “one night” and quite comfortable. They can be worn for up to 7 days with tips in the instruction booklet to prolong the wear. They are still firmly in place now as I type this following a day of household chores and doing up buttons etc. Personally I find them a bit too long for daily wear but I have to say I’m starting to grow attached to them.

All in all I think these are a great option for one day or night wear if you find yourself in hurry with no time to pain your nails. They certainly did the job complimenting my outfit and looked great all night but most importantly didn’t ping off!!!

You can purchase these elegent touch press-on nails at boots £7.99 or 799 points, I used my points and got them for free!

Have you tried any DIY false nails? I would love to hear your experiences.

Secondblonde xIMG_0122-0

Matchy Matchy…Oribe hair care meets Barielle nail polish!

 Luxury hair care Oribe’s hottest NEW range is their Bright Blonde product range, read more about luscious Oribe here. I was lusting over the beautiful packaging so much that I decided to paint my nails in a hue to match, it’s the new thing didn’t you know!

 Diving into my nail polish drawer which is bursting full of polishes in a rainbow of colours I found a Barielle colour I’ve not worn in a while, it’s called Berry go Round. If you aren’t familiar with this brand I’ve posted about them before Read here. A quick file, base coat, 2 coats of Colour and a top coat finishing with cuticle oil and ta dah! Nails like you’ve just stepped out of a salon. 

secondblonde x