Review | TheBalm Mary Lou Manizer Highlighter

13 September 2015



A year ago, the whole highlighting myself was so unnecessary to my make up routine, and even though I already owned a couple of highlighters myself, it was never a thing I would reach for daily. And well, that has totally changed now. After some extensive reading and researching, I learnt how much of a thing it all really is and how it can bring more detail to certain features on the face and how much more dewy it can make your makeup look too. The whole of the internet social media and blogs have been raving about this for ages so I had to give in to see what the hype was all about for myself. This is the first TheBalm product I have purchased and previously, only tried a sample from my Birchbox subscription so I wasn't too familiar with the brand before trying this.

What TheBalm Says:

An all-in-one essential, this smart shadow, beautiful blush and subtle highlighter is tucked inside a go-anywhere compact. The light-reflecting peachy pink hue adds a splash of color to your cheeks and a hint of shimmer to your lids, while illuminating your finest features.

The product packaging has a retro look to it, and if I'm going to be 100% honest with you it was pretty off putting at first because it doesn't exactly look like something I would usually pick up (one of the beauties about this product in a way) so I wasn't really expecting much from this. I had come across it on online beauty stores and never thought much of it until Michelle from 'Beauty and the blog' recommended it a couple of months back. The colour of the powder is a golden honey, champagne hued shade and literally picks up a lot of pigmentation even when dabbed.

Dry swatch | Wet swatch
Application and longevity:

Now, if you're looking for a highlighter that will 'POP' then this is it. One swish over my cheek and its was already noticeable. It isn't either shimmery nor glittery, so it's just the right amount of reflection. I did attempt to build up the colour to see how it would look and my cheeks did look like disco balls, so a little definitely goes a long way with this product ladies unless that is the look you're going for. Not only can this be used as a highlighter but also an eyeshadow as it blends very well, however if it isn't blended in properly there is a slight chance you will look patchy. Prior to applying your makeup I would advise a pore minimizing primer as this highlighter everything (literally).

In terms of lasting all day, it ticked all the boxes. I have seen a lot of people complain about the price but how I see it, is you get so much for what you pay and after a whole month of my using it. it looks as if I haven't even touched it once. Compared to some well known high end brands, this one is value for money as you don't really need to retouch and the compact is full to the top.

Overall, Value wise, I think this will last me for ages (if I even do finish it) as the compact is full to the top and you only need to apply a small amount also. I totally understand what the hype over this product was and how for a whole month I had to search high and low to find it (Has now been restocked by many online retailers FYI), and it will most definitely be getting a lot of wear this upcoming autumn/winter especially!

The Mary Lou Manizer highlighter by TheBalm is currently priced at £17.50 and can be purchased from the following website Here (or Here)
What do you think about this highlighter? Have you tried it yet?

Review | Nars Pure Radiant Moisturizer

8 September 2015



As I am still on the search for a new foundation that will satisfy all my beauty needs, I decided to take a break from purchasing anything along that category and focus on the items I do have and maybe see if I would react differently the second time round. Guess what? That was the best decision I had made in a while (in beauty terms). I decided to start using my Nars Radiant Tinted Moisturiser as it was close to the expiry date and I didn't want it to go to waste without me giving it another try. I fell back in love with this so much I even decided to repurchase it asap before the current one even runs out! Let me tell you more below...


What Nars say about it:

Your skin – almost bare, but better. This advanced, oil-free formula provides a translucent veil of color and sun protection while helping to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation and dark spots in just four weeks. Infused with lush, naturally derived botanicals and ingredients to immediately help thirsty skin feel hydrated. Kopara from French Polynesia and mineral rich seawater revive and re-mineralize skin for a softer, smoother, and brighter natural glow. Skin is transported

When I first purchased this I decided to do it online and guess my shade. I had never used any Nars foundations and only had tried their bronzers and blushes and lip products. I went for the shade 'Cuba' which is for a mix of yellow and pink undertones (NC44/Cadiz FYI), but even though I had gotten the shade pretty much bang on, the shade closest to my match has a slight orange undertone which at times can be hard for me to work with, so I tend to reach for it mostly during the summer months when I am tanned. A pea sized amount is enough to cover a whole face and once applied gives a natural dewy look that can simply be mattified with some powder without your face feeling heavy.

In terms of texture, it is what you would expect a good moisture to feel like; silky but not runny and with a smooth application. What won me over about this product is that it stays on all day without your face looking cakey even after applying powder. This foundation is meant to be sheer coverage but it actually does the most,  I have used many other tinted and bb cream moisturisers and this one ticks all the boxes for me. Minor marks and imperfections that are visible on my skin didn't show up as much (some at all) and the best thing about it? No break outs!

(L-R)  Swatch and Blend: With flash and no flash

To sum it all up two bottles later, I'm sure thats enough to say that this is the best I have used, especially when it does more than it states. To me, the coverage does justify the price and also you only need a small amount for a full face coverage. This is definitely one of my grail products so expect to see this a lot in upcoming tutorials and posts! The tinted moisturiser comes in 11 shades and can be purchased from retailers such as Selfridges or House of Fraser for £29

Let me know if you have tried this or you are thinking of trying this x


Transitioning into Autumn

25 August 2015

Autumn Transition

With summer nearly over and autumn creeping upon on really quick, I'm starting to find it hard to piece outfits together that will keep me warm, cool, and dry all in one without having to look a right mess. I am sticking with colour for this transition but have started to mix in my trusty neutrals to balance out the brightness and swapped the cut offs for some timeless skinny jeans. Now is also the perfect time to invest in a trusty leather jacket. You can layer it over a maxi dress or keep it simple with some jeans and a plain tee.

My make up routine also changes around this time of year, I tend to ditch the gloss and start reaching out for darker tones of lipstick, my nails colour gets darker and I bring out the foundation and blusher which are two things that don't work for me during the summer time. I am also loving the darker brown nudes for this winter, I am currently in love with Mac stone which I am dying for a restock as I decided to skip purchasing it this month. Wine tone lips and Grey nails are my staples so expect to see loads of those in the upcoming months!

Below I have added links to all of my favourite items from some of my favourite high street brands, so just click the images! Let me know what your current go to items are by commenting underneath this post x
      

Review | NARS Lumious Weightless Foundation

18 August 2015

This foundation came around nearly six months ago and has been raved about by so many beauty bloggers so far. I waited a while to purchase this and only caved in early June simply because I had a load of foundation to finish off (it takes me a while as I don't always wear any) and I wanted to see how other people got on with it first instead of it being me to take the plunge and going ahead with buying it.

What Nars say
Full, natural-looking coverage with unexpectedly weightless, 16-hour wear. Highly pigmented and perfectly balanced, this breakthrough formula builds and blends effortlessly with just one drop.



My thoughts
I have combination skin where my face is sensitive, however my t-zone tends to get a bit oily after a couple of hours which is super annoying and as I rarely carry make up with me for a touch up, this has made it a real big struggle for me. Finding a foundation with decent coverage that doesn't allow the oil on my nose to seep through was beginning to seem impossible to find and I know this is a lot of girls problems because you either allow your face to get oily or risk using a foundation that leaves you with a white cast on. So when I came across this I was in two minds if I really wanted to test out another foundation or stick with what I already own.

My first impression of this was why is the foundation separating already? The oil had risen to the top and the formula at the bottom so if you don't give it a good shake before applying, don't bother using it. The packaging is made of glass and and finally has a pump unlike the previous Nars foundations where you would have had to purchase the pump separately. Coming with a pump (thank God) was amazing and so useful whoever it cannot be removed, no matter how hard I tried it just spinned and spinned.  



How well did it work on me?
The foundation when applied does feel very lightweight and doesn't feel like you have anything on either. My skin looked glowy and the shade hid any red tones I usually get under my eyes. The foundation is on the pricier side, and even though Nars claim you only need 1 pump for your whole face (if you're the size of a garden gnome),  you will probably need about two or three pumps to do so but despise that, I'll assuming this will last a while depending how often you use it and if you apply more than one coat as the pumps are pretty small. 

In terms of coverage it is medium lightweight coverage but like I previously mentioned it can be layered or if you prefer a more sheer look, then a damp beauty blender will help you achieve that also. After about 4/5 hours my t-zone does start to get oily but not as much as other foundations make it, so I couldn't really complain and only needed to blot once. Apart from that, it does stay put all day which I can't really fault.


Shade Reference:

 MAC: NC43/44 
Revlon Colourstay: Caramel
DiorSkin Star: 041 or 050
Nars: Syracuse or Tahoe
Maybelline: 240

Overall I would give this a 7/10 as I didn't really see what the fuss was with this product and much prefer the feel and coverage I get from the Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturiser best, despite it being a tinted moisture (feels more like a foundation). Now, I am not saying this wasn't good, It did stay put and didn't feel heavy on the face but I feel like it wasn't something to fuss over when there are probably better ones on the market.  

Review | Urban Decay De-Slick Setting Spray

2 August 2015


Lately, my skin type has changed and it has taken me a while to adjust and admit to the fact I no longer have an easy and 'normal' skin type to deal with. So I now suffer from an oily t-zone, mainly my nose which is super annoying. I have been on the hunt for a new setting spray that not only keeps my make up on, but also allows me to not have to blot my nose as often.

Urban Decay is majorly known for their amazing eyeshadow NAKED palettes which I must vouch are worth every penny! The De-Slick Setting Spray is oil free and parabens free, as well as having 'temperature control technology' which apparently isn't as complicated as it sounds and only means your makeup won't be as affected by heat (or the lack of). The spray is also meant to deflect any light from the face to not show any shine, which has been a major problem for me when taking pictures lately.

"Mist on this weightless spray to control oil, deflect surface shine and help make up stay up." 
- Urban Decay

My first impressions of this is why are there two lids? But the main point that amazes me is you actually feel it blending and sticking to the makeup which was previously applied to the face. It doesn't feel sticky or anything but it is a nice reassurance that this one may be a keeper. After applying the spray, I checked back on my make up every 3-4 hours to see how it was coping up with the spray and I was actually surprised that I didn't have an oily nose yet. My make up was also intact and still looked fresh.

After a full 11 hours with my make up on, I only had to blot my nose after six hours of applying the spray. Another thing I found really great about this spray is that, if you over do it with powder and get that cakey effect, once sprayed, this does make that less noticeable and gives you a smooth finish to your makeup. 

So like a normal setting spray, you apply this AFTER applying your makeup, and preferably BEFORE putting on mascara so you avoid the ghastly 'Panda Eyes'. I apply mine in a 'square' type of motion so it covers all four corners and then the middle of my inner face. I feel this way everything is fully covered unlike the 'X' and 'T' formation they recommend on the instructions displayed in the packaging.

I would definitely recommend this and I will totally be stocking up on the bigger bottle too once this one has finished and I still see the same results after a month or two. The travel size bottle is pretty big and despite being 'travel sized', it will definitely last a couple of months.

Hope this was some help to anyone wanting a long lasting setting spray or with the same problems I was going though. 

Monica 
xxx

MAC x Selena: Yes it is happening!

23 July 2015

Instagram | @maccosmetics

Being a Latina, I had to post something in regards to the upcoming MAC x Selena collection which was announced Thursday of last week. MAC decided to go ahead with the release of this collection inspired by the late Latin singer Selena Quintanilla after a Change Org Petition was created by the singer's fans to create awareness for the dream limited edition MAC collection. It went viral thanks to trusty hashtags (let's never underestimate the power of them waffles again) and succeeded with a massive  37,772 supporters behind it!

This year will be the 20th anniversary of the Latin singer who was killed by a former employee back in 1995, who had planned for her album to be released later in that same year. For those who have not heard of Selena Quintanilla before, she was singer, songwriter and actress from Texas born of Mexican parents. 

Mock picture that went Viral

To help create this line, which is due to release around mid 2016 (confirmed by MAC themselves), Selena's sister Suzette Quintanilla will be working closely with the MAC team to create what was her late sister's dream. I am guessing there will be a lot of Rouge lip shades and 90's inspired looks amongst this Collection but I am totally excited.  Now, lately MAC have been doing the most with all these collabs there are around two a month now so why not add another which will be totally great.

What do you think of this collab? Will you be giving in to this one?

March Beauty Favourites

31 March 2015


Welcome to a new feature on Five Two Style! As the month is coming to an end I thought I would share with you all the items I have been obsessing over this past month, and it is also my first favourites post. Just thought I would add that these are not all of my favourite products but the ones I have fallen back in love with, and have been using a lot of lately. This list changes all the time, but some of these items will possibly feature again in one way or another.

Bodyshop All-in-one BB cream

I grabbed this in January as my skin wasn't agreeing with foundation which was really bugging me and I have been using this and setting it with powder since. The coverage is minimal but leaves you glowing. A good recommendation from a friend now I recommend it to you.
Benefit Posie balm
Surely I am no the only one that purchases things and forgets about them. I think I got this during the summer or something. This lip balm has just enough tint to wear daily but still makes you look glam without drying your lips out.
Bourjois Volume Clubbing Eyeliner
This is something I randomly reached for during this month and I had completely forgotten how great it was. It doesn't dry too quickly and doesn't clump at all. perfect liquid liner especially if you have a steady hand. It is also super black!
Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara
This is the best mascara I currently own, and if I had to choose one mascara to use for the rest of my life it would definitely be this one here. It lengthens and thickens without clumping and stays on all day without giving me panda eyes.
Embryolisse Lait-Crème Moisturiser
It's not too light or too heavy, and it also acts as a primer. Its an amazing cream to try and a staple beauty product. It took me a while to go out and grab it despite its many many good reviews but I have had this for a couple of months now and it is most definitely one of the best moisturisers I own.
Tangle Teezer Original
I own so many of these now I literally have one everywhere because I can't go without this. Having curly hair means that brushing is such a long task for me and whenever I use a tangle teezer  it saves me half the time with less the pain. Also it doesn't tug so much on my hair.
Bodyshop Strawberry Shower Gel 
My all time favourite. Subtle smell that is sweet without smelling so overpowering on the skin. Need I say more ?

What were your favourites for February? Let me know below in the comment box x





New In: March Beauty Buys

27 March 2015


New season means new buys and right about now I seem to be running low on most of my essentials. This month posting my new buys has been totally tragic as I managed to lose my pictures twice! This is finally the third and final attempt (I hope) but I have already to started using half of the things and repackaged some bits also *cries*. I started off March saying I needed a new foundation and powder but it is now basically the end an I haven't purchased either.

Anyway this month I didn't go crazy and only bought things I have been wanting to get for a while without breaking the bank, but there is still so much on my list that I want and need. When it comes to MAC this month I had such a bad experience. My first order (which consisted of both Cinderella glosses and lipsticks) managed to get lost in the post some how and didn't turn up, luckily a girl on twitter messaged me when they accidentally landed on the Debenhams websites so I managed to snap up a lipstick and mascara, and whilst browsing I also managed to get my hands on the Dior Lip Maximizer Lipgloss that always seems to be out of stock. A trip to PAKS for some curly products lead me to find the amazing L.A Girl concealers and let me tell you, for £3.99 they are so good. They do not crease much and can be set with Ben Nye banana powder. After a load of oooing, umming and aahhing I decided I needed (wanted) some more real techniques bold metal brushes so I grabbed another four I thought I would use and I must say I do not regret that move one bit. The last product I have been hearing good things about was the Bare Minerals well rested under eye powder. It is meant to stay put and not budge so I can't wait to test it out.  So yeah, beauty wise it wasn't really a good month for purchases and pictures but at least I ticked off some items from my wish-list.

Below I've supplied you with a shopping list with links to everything purchased this month,  let me know if you would like a review on any of the recent products I've purchased and I will get right on it.

Real Techniques brushes in 300,200,201,202 (from £10 to £24) 

What beauty buys did you get your hands on this month girls? Remember, any face powder and foundation suggestions are very welcome ladies so leave me a comment with whatever you find works for you x.

Closed: One year giveaway

7 March 2015




So I have been blogging for a year now and to thank you all for the support I have received in the past year I have decided to do a one year giveaway including some items that I absolutely loved using the last 12 months. I've been meaning to post this for the last two weeks but I had to wait for products to be delivered so I can show you all the contents of what is included. I wanted to give you a chance to try all I have been enjoying and what I'm sure you will all enjoy! I wasn't able to include EVERY item I love as I am not a big blogger and all that is included above was purchase with my own money, but the rest can be saved for upcoming giveaways. There is a variety of makeup products as well as skincare.

The Prizes included in this giveaway are:

Limecrime Velvetines lip stain in Wicked
Benefit They're Real makeup remover
L'oreal Miss Manga mascara
MAC lipstick (one of your choice) 
Carmex Moisture Plus berry lip balm
Ardell Demi Wispies Lashes
Bodyshop Insta Blur face primer
Kiko nail polish
Seventeen Skin Wow primer
Khiels moisturiser
Lola Cosmetics lipstick
Magnifibres Fibrelash eyelash primer
Sephora nail polish
Too Faced Melted Lip Stain Lipstick in Melted Fuchsia, Berry and Peony.

Rules: 

To be entered you will need to do either of the following:
1.Repost and Follow via Instagram with the hashtag #52giveaway.
2.Tweet me a favourite beauty product you own with the hashtag 
#52giveaway via twitter. Must follow via Twitter 
3. Leave a comment on this post with the product you like the most from above (leave an email address) must follow via google+ or bloglovin
You can qualify for an extra entry by doing two or more of the above.

The competition will close on Friday 20th at 11:59pm, and I will announce a winner on sunday 22nd of March at 7pm. The winner will then have 48 hours to claim their prize or I will choose another winner for that unclaimed prize. This is a U.K only competition, as it is my first one.


You must be Following me via either InstagramTwitter, or Google+ to qualify for an entry.


Good Luck! x


The winner of the #52giveaway is J.Bowes not sure if you have Instagram or Twitter as I have announced it there but I will be emailing the winner within the next 24 hours  for their details and for which Mac lipstick shade they would like. 

Thank you to everyone that has taken part in my first giveaway, and for everyone that has supported me in the past year even before the name change! I honestly appreciate you all ❤️ this is one of many giveaways that will come this year so stay tuned for plenty more 💎

Today I am ONE

17 February 2015


I can't believe that on this day last year I published my first post. It took me a whole year and a couple of months until I finally plucked up the courage to start one and trust me it hasn't been easy, but I have enjoyed every piece of it, and every challenge that has been thrown at me in the past 12 months. I have been so chuffed that you guys email me, ask me for recommendations or simply ask me for advice.

In the past year I changed name, worked with some amazing brands, and have met some amazing people. I appreciate all of your support, because without you guys reading these posts I guess I would have possibly stopped by now. I am always interested in your suggestions and ideas so please keep them coming by comments,emails, Instagram DM and even Twitter.I hope you all continue to join me on this ongoing journey to wherever this ends up. 

I will have a giveaway at the end of this month to say thank you to you all for the support so stay tuned for that. Thank you all for making this all so special. 2015 will be a much better year! 

Mac x Disney Cinderella Collection 2015

12 February 2015



Image via Look.co.uk
Make up + Disney = Heaven to me, and when I first heard of this collection all I could think was that it would only be suited for people of a fairer skin tone and boy was I wrong. To celebrate the release of the upcoming live action Cinderella film released later in March, Disney have decided to get together with Mac once again to create a number of eye catching yet subtle pieces. 

This is a feminine and pretty collection with packaging to resemble one of this seasons trends, Pastels, and a nude colour palette as their theme.I'm a sucker for a Mac Collection but lately they either forget to alert everyone or the colours have been very repetitive and very much alike judging by the swatches I've seen and similar to previous collections also. The collection consists of  17 pieces; 2 Lipsticks, 2 Lip glosses, A 6 shadow Palette, 2 studio eye glosses, 2 fluidline eyeliners, a pressed powder, glitter, 2 pigments, mascara, beauty powder, and 2 brushes which are from the permanent MAC line.



Photo Via Temptalia
As well as iconic shoes from designers such as Charlotte Olympia, Jimmy Choo and Stuart Weitzman, of course Mac wanted a piece of this magic also. The main piece that will possibly fly off the shelves in no time will surely be the Palette which has great reviews by beauty Guru Temptalia.To see swatches head over to Temptalia's blog to check them out.


I am totally loving the nudes in this collection, especially the Glass Slipper gloss, and Free as a Butterfly Lipsticks. Maybe a Pocahontas Collab for us warmer tone girls next ?  MAC Disney Cinderella is available in Harrods already and at MAC counters from 13th March. 

What have you got your eye on?

11 Beauty wants for 2015

21 January 2015

There are always a bunch of things I want but every time payday comes or I'm out shopping I feel as if those items could wait a couple of weeks or months, whilst the list just grows and grows. Do you ever do that? This year, I told myself that I would not spend as much as I usually do when it comes to both fashion and beauty and utilise what I have before buying things I don't necessarily need nor use.

I had to put together a collage of all the beauty wants I can't get off my mind (or list in my case) that I will eventually be grabbing this year.

2015 Beauty Wishlist



Tried any of the above already, then let me know what you think of it.

What's on your beauty wish list for 2015?

Just To Say...

19 January 2015

Hey ladies (and gents), Happy New Year from me.

I have been quite absent lately from blogging but I have noticed that people are still viewing the blog daily which means a great deal to me. There have been many different reasons as to why I haven't blogged within the last two months but I will assure you all, I have NOT lost my blogging mojo. I wasn't happy with how my blog was going so I needed some time out to see what direction I wanted this to go in. The blog name was also a main issue as I felt it wasn't really me despite my name being in the title. The reason I have decided to post a little message to you all, mainly my frequent readers, is that I will be changing the blog to www.fivetwostyle.com which will still contain beauty, personal style and lifestyle posts just as before.

I would like to thank you for all the support during the last couple of months, it means a great deal to me! I hope you all continue supporting me, and I promise a lot of exciting posts and updates shortly.

See you all very soon x

Latest Instagrams

© FiveTwoStyle.