Brows, stay put!

browcote-review - 1My brow obsession is never ending. Being one of the lucky ones to get their brows back after the over plucking disaster of the 90s, I now cultivate them in their natural fullness and just love it.

That means I do fill them, to make them stronger but unfortunately that’s not enough: my brow hairs tend to grow downwards, meaning my carefully groomed arch sags a bit as the day goes by.

But fear the sagging arch no longer! Browcote is here to help.

browcote-review - 2From the folks that blessed us with the amazing Lipcote (which I cannot live without), Browcote does to our brows the same Lipcote does to our lips: fix it in place. Not just the colour, but also the hairs. Sealed. All day long.

Very compact with a rather bushy soft brush, the clear gel makes sure brows are on point all day.

Of course, I had no doubt in my mind that whoever made Lipcote would not disappoint. And disappoint they did not!

Browcote eyebrow sealer is brand new, costs only £6.99 and can be purchased from major retailers nationwide.


This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Primed and prepped: a guide to primers

which_primer - 2 of 6 (1)Many a times I went on about how primers changed my life and how important they are in the makeup routine. I will give you a brief round-up not to bore you.

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Review: Maleficent by MAC True Love’s Kiss Lipstick

maleficent by mac lipstick true love's kiss

After so much anticipation, the Maleficent by MAC launched in the UK on the 15 May.  I had already set my little wish list and was determined to get my claws on a few items.

As soon as I received their email saying the collection was available, I went online and placed an order for the lipstick – which was the item I really wanted), the lip liner and some lashes.

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Lipcote Lipstick Finder


It is no secret Lipcote is one of the products I cannot live without. I rave about it, I recommend it, I take it as a gift to lipstick-loving friends in Brazil. I simply love it.

Recently I came across their Lipstick Finder – an application on their site that helps us, indecisive ladies, to pick the right lipstick shade.

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Red lipstick: how to apply

how to apply red lipstick - somanylovelythings

It was love at first stroke. And I knew it was going to be for life. There are colours I like on my lips. But love, red is the only one.

Being a 90’s teenager meant nothing but lipgloss coloured (?!) my lips for a very long time. Until I had the red lippy epiphany and my life was never the same. I realise THAT is my real self – the expression of my personality via a red lip.

I consider myself quite fortunate as blue-ish, orange and true reds suit my skin. Being olive-skinned, the oranges do look much nicer, but jointly with MAC’s Lady Danger (which I believe is the best shade for me), Russian Reds reigns.

However, there is nothing worse than a badly applied red lipstick (I lied, there is, but for dramatic purposes, I won’t elaborate), and lots of people ask how I do it and keep it all night. Well, I’ll tell you how. It happens in stages. At the moment, my skin is extra dry – weather and medication being the culprits.

  • Look after your lips. I use Lush’s sugar lip scrub to exfoliate. When my pucker is feeling rougher, I do it every night. If not, from time to time, when I need. My dad used to tell me off an awful lot when younger “Ni, stop licking your lips”. Well, no surprise, he was right. Avoid. Use a balm instead!
  • Use plenty of lip balm when not wearing lipstick. I apply every night before bed, generously, without fail. It is part of my night routine, just as cleansing, toning and moisturising. I realised some make my lips drier, even though they work for most people. At the moment, I am loving Nivea Lip Butter, any flavour!
  • For unexpected roughness and dry skin, put some lip balm on and use a toothbrush to gently scrub away the dry skin, preparing your lips for colour.
  • When I start my makeup, even before I start prepping, I apply lip balm on my lips. And do my makeup. By the time I get to them, the balm has almost been completely absorbed (I usually wipe if off anyway, not to interfere with the lipstick) and my lips are ready! I don’t use a lip primer, I tried a few but didn’t think it was any more effective than my current routine.

how to apply red lipstick - somanylovelythings

  • First, I line my lips (01). Use a good liner with a colour close to the lipstick. doesn’t need to be the same. I use Redd from MAC with almost any red I have (but not burgundies). If I want it a bit more vibrant, I use an orange-y one (Lasting Sensation is a fave). Line within your lip line for a natural effect. I paint a bit of the lip with the pencil (02), to help blending  the colours.
  • Then, using a lip brush (MAC 318 retractable lip brush is my godsend) fill the lip, blending the lines (03). I just go over them carefully with the brush.
  • Sometimes I pat a tissue on the lips to remove excess, repeat application and remove excess again.
  • Finally, I apply my saviour product Lipcote (04). I cannot live without it. Really. Make sure you apply it correctly. First, around the edges, then fill the lips. DO not eat or drink for 30 minutes. If you follow the instructions and use a matte lipstick, it is very likely it will hang in there for a few hours, even when drinking, Oily foods will remove it for sure.

how to apply red lipstick - somanylovelythings

And that is it! To be honest, I wear red day or night – and highly recommend, as long as you feel comfortable!


Beauty products and make up I cannot live without

Most of my eyeshadows!

We all have them, right? Some swear by a handful of products that keep them beautiful on a daily basis… however, you are *slightly* more exaggerated,  like myself, you probably notice that your staple beauty products cannot fit in one hand, or two… better bring out the sack…

I decided to list my essential make up items as well as my staple beauty products, as I believe they go hand in hand beautifying my everyday!

There is an awful lot more stuff and I have to say, I am quite good using most of the stuff I have

Drum roll…. here is my tried, tested and loved list:

Make up

  • MAC foundation, most of the times Selct FPS 15 in NC37 – I have tried many foundations in my life (trust me, I am a girl who had severe acne when younger), and this is the one I stuck with for quite sometime. Great to apply, it has a medium coverage. I am, at the moment, trying MAC’s Matchmaster, which has slightly better coverage than the Select and I am very happy with it too. I sometimes mix my foundation with moisturiser for everyday use or build up for hard-wearing make up.
  • MAC Mineralize skinfinish natural powder, in medium dark – cannot live without, usually brush on top of my foundation to add colour, but sometimes just on its own it offers you good coverage without being heavy, at all.
  • MAC Sheertone Shimmer blush in Sunbasque – so versatile…. could, in desperate times, double up as a bronzer, it goes with most colours. When I am full make up on, I use it only on the apple of the cheeks, with Mineralize blush in Chic Couple under the cheek bone for extra definition.
  • MAC Mineralize skinfinish bronzer in Gold deposit – not too overpowering in colour, gives you that lovely glow, suitable for the winter and summer, can be built up…. great for a bot of contouring.
  • MAC eye shadow in Carbon –  another super versatile item. An intense matte black, I wear it as for fierce smokey eyes or on a daily basis as eye liner.
  • Mascara usually Maybelline Falsies, but lately been dabbling with YSL – you can check the review here, Soap & Glory and Maybelline One by One.
  • Eye liner – I have and use many different ones. The one I am quite into at the moment is the The Collection 200o Extreme 24 hour felt tip liner in black. I use eye shadow as eyeliner, gel liners from Maybelline and MAC.
  • MAC brow shader duo – a nice little matchbox like packaging with a dark shadow for your eyebrow and a lighter for the brow bone. It has been discontinued, I am lucky I have two and they last forever!
  • MAC pigment in Vanilla – so great, really gives your brow bone that extra, glamourous sheen, lifting your brows up to the sky! Amazing buy, a little pot will last you a long time.
  • Eye shadow – I own a plethora of shades… cannot get enough of eye shadow, could not pick a favourite, as it varies with my mood.
  • Lancôme Color Fever lipstick in Hot Stuff Rouge: a metallic red I think this colour has been discontinued, which is  shame, as it is the best red ever! It is not too bright so suitable for day wear, it has a smooth creamy texture, so it glides when you apply – it is so good, I don’t even have to use a lip liner. I love it!
  • MAC Russian Red lipstick – hot. That’s all.
  • Lipcote lipstick fixer – I swear by this product. After reading reviews that it dries your lips more than fixes the colour, I was a bit unsure about buying it. My lips are quite dry, and this product hasn’t made it any worse. It fixes the colour beautifully, and I never wear a red on a night out without applying this on top. It stays put most of the night and it won’t stain glasses when you drink. Great!
  • A primer. Been using MAC’s Prep+Prime Skin for a few years and recently discovered Murad Hybrids Skin Perfecting primer (dewy finish) which did wonders for my skin – a brilliant primer for acne scarred skin.  I also use Lancôme’s La Base Pro.
  • Eyelid primer – at the moment using e.l.f and happy with it.


  • Face moisturiser – Nivea visage Oil free moisturising fluid is great value for money. I also wear Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion, but this Nivea one is a great budget alternative – the texture is pretty much the same, it absorbs quickly, it moisturises well and my skin likes it.
  • Victoria’s Secret hydrating body lotion in Pure Seduction – been wearing it for a good 10 years now and it is the only moisturiser  my body has seen. Love the consistency, the hydration and the smell is to die for. Sadly, not largely available in the UK (soon to be though), so I stock up from duty free, and suffer the occasional “moisturiser depletion anxiety” when I think I will run out before another trip abroad.
  • Victoria’s Secret ultra-moisturizing hand and body cream, also in Pure Seduction- just like above, but I use it as a hand moisturiser.  It is just great, more supple than the body lotion, also good for elbows and knees.
  • St. Tropez Everyday Airbrush fake tan – easy to apply, never had streaks, the tan looks natural – worth noting I do not abuse it!The smell could be better, but could also be much worse, so overall, I like it and rely on it.
  • Lip balm – my lips are quite dry, and I suffer a lot in the winter; you won’t see without Vaseline lip therapy cocoa butter and lately créme bruleé or cherry Carmex.
  • Clarins Cleansing milk and Toning lotion for combination/oily skin – I know I should wear it twice daily, but I usually do it once, before going to bed. The toning lotion is also a good astringent, and I wear it on my eye lids as part of my eye make up prep!
  • Clinique 3 step system – I usually do this in the mornings. At the moment, I am using the soap bar and clarifying lotion 2, for dry combination skin.
  • Eye drops – My eyes are also very dry, in the wonter aggravated by heating and in th summer by hayfever (I know, lucky me, eh?!), so I use itchy eye drops a lot. I’ve been using Optrex Itchy eye drops and it helps a lot. In the winter,  I usually change to a moisturising eye drop, like Optrex Dry or Actimist eye spray (which I find great!)
  • Batiste dry shampoo  – an absolute saviour. When younger, I used to wash my hair every day, because it is quite fine and looks dirty in 24 hours. Not anymore, dry shampoo (and ballerina buns) changed my life.
  • L’Oréal Absolute eye & lip make-up remover – another saviour, been wearing for a long time, cheap and cheerful, does the job brillianty.
  • Kérastase Nutritive Nutri-termique hair mask –  this is a miracle worker, using it once a week for about a year really changed my hair’s condition. Really amazing product.
  • Kérastase Lait Nutri-sculpt leave in smoothing hair foundation – in combination with the hair mask, this also changed my hair – it enabled me to grow it with the best condition my hair has ever been.
  • Nail varnish – lots and lots of it, in a rainbow-like palette!!!
What about you? What are the products you cannot live without?  Have you tried any of my favourites? What did you think?