Friday, 30 March 2012

White & Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

Hi Everyone!
I have been busy baking today and decided to make these white and dark chocolate cupcakes. They are made up from a dark chocolate sponge with a white chocolate frosting. Here's how to make them:

100g Self Raising Flour
20g Cocoa Powder
145g Golden Caster Sugar
40g Butter
120ml Whole Milk
1 Large Egg
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Instant Coffee dissolved in 1 tsp Hot Water

280g Butter
280g Icing Sugar
200g White Chocolate, melted and cooled

1. Preheat oven to 180C/ Gas Mark 4 and place 12 cupcake cases in a cupcake tin.
2. Place the flour, cocoa powder, sugar and butter into a food processor and blitz on a slow speed for 1 minute until you have a sandy consistency.
3. Gradually pour in half of the milk and beat until just incorporated.
4. In a separate bowl whisk the remaining milk, egg, vanilla and coffee together.
5. Beat the two mixtures together until smooth.
6. Divide the mixture up between the 12 cases and bake for 20 minutes.
7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
8. To make the frosting tip the butter and icing sugar into the food processor and beat until combined.
9. Remove this mixture from the mixer into a large bowl and fold in the cooled, melted chocolate.
10. Pipe or spoon the frosting onto each cupcake and decorate (I used milk chocolate buttons).

These cakes are gorgeous, light and so chocolatey! The addition of the coffee into the mix really brings out the flavour of the chocolate in the sponge and the white chocolate frosting is so tasty! Give them a go!

I found this recipe on the Good Food Channel website.
Maz x

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Benefit Flatter Me Cream Eyeshadow - Review & Swatch

Hi Everyone!
I recently purchased one of Benefit's Creaseless Cream Eyeshadows in the colour Flatter Me which is described as a 'Toasted mauve' shade. These cream products can be used as an eyeshadow or an eye liner which is great. Benefit recommend that you apply a layer of the product on to your eye, wait 30 seconds and then apply another layer if you want to intensify the colour.


I am a big fan of MAC's Paint Pot's and own quite a few of them so I was keen to see how these compare. Firstly the Benefit Cream Eyeshadow's are 50p cheaper than the MAC alternatives here in the UK but are slightly smaller so cost-wise they are around the same price. I tend to use my Paint Pot's as eyeshadow bases rather than on their own too and they always perform well at this. Flatter me has a nice smooth consistency which made it easy to apply similar to the consistency of Painterly Paint Pot (I have found Painterly to be one of the smoothest of MAC's Paint Pots). I have found it easy to apply with both my fingers and with a synthetic brush.

The colour is beautiful and applies to the skin exactly how it looks in the pot. I have worn it alone with no powder over the top and it held up well with minimal creasing after a long day. I have also used it under an eyeshadow as a base and it also did well. Flatter Me looks beautiful paired up with browns, greys and Plums. I have worn it with 'Toasted' from the original Urban Decay Naked Palette and it looks beautiful as it is a similar colour.


Overall I don't really have anything bad to say about this product! It is quite expensive but it is a quality product so, therefore, worth the money in my opinion. As I mentioned above, I own several MAC Paint Pot's so was eager to compare the 2 products. I would say that the Benefit shadows are slightly more pigmented than the MAC ones so if you want to wear the cream shadow alone then go for the Benefit option.

You can purchase this eyeshadow from Benefit for £14
Maz x

Monday, 26 March 2012

MAC Blot Powder Review

Hi Everyone!
I usually use MAC's Mineralize Skinfinish Natural to set my foundation but I decided to try their Blot powder for a change to set it and to try and reduce shine on my face, especially in my t-zone area as this powder absorbs any excess oil on your face. The Blot Powder is a pressed powder and has a really nice silky texture.

The Blot powder has very little colour to it, I am a MAC NW20 and the MAC artist suggested the colour Medium-Dark which is perfect for me. The powder comes with a puff to apply it or for touch ups during the day or you can apply it with a brush such as the MAC 150.

I have used my Blot Powder several times now over several of my foundations including the MAC Studio Fix Fluid, L'Oreal True Match and Make-up Forever HD and it does a great job at setting it and doesn't change the colour at all which avoids the cakey, over-powdered look. I have also definitely noticed the reduction of shine in my t-zone area and only touch up the powder once during the day. Overall, I have to say that I really liked MAC's Mineralize Skinfinish Natural Powder but this is better if you have oily areas like me!

You can purchase the Blot Powder from MAC for £19.
Maz x

Friday, 23 March 2012

China Glaze Smoke & Ashes with Luxe & Lush

Hi Everyone!

China Glaze have recently released a new nail polish collection to celebrate The Hunger Games movie called 'Capitol Colours'. I have picked up a couple of the colours from the collection including 'Smoke and Ashes' and 'Luxe and Lush' which I have applied today.

Smoke and Ashes
Smoke and Ashes is a black based polish with blue and green micro glitter. This polish doesn't look anything special in pictures but when you see it up close, either in the bottle or on the nail you release how pretty it is!
Luxe and Lush
Luxe and Lush: This is a flakie polish which is really popular at the moment. The flakes show up different colours depending on what colour polish it has been applied over and on how the light is hitting it.

I began by applying 2 coats of OPI Matte Nail Envy as my base followed by 1 coat of Smoke and Ashes. This polish is really opaque after the first coat but is quite thick and gloopy to apply and isn't the quickest to dry. I then added 1 coat of Luxe and Lush over the top. The flakey pieces distribute really easily and evenly over the nail and lie flat which is great.I finished off by applying 1 coat of Seche Vite Top Coat.

I love both of these polishes individually and together! The make such a unique and interesting pairing!

I purchased these polishes from Amazon for £6.95 each.
Maz x

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Nail Polish Obsession Tag!

Hi Everyone!
I saw this nail polish tag on YouTube and thought that it would be fun to do it for you all!

1. What is your favourite nail polish company?
I love Essie and China Glaze but I would say that OPI has to be my favourite company. Their collections are amazing and the polish always wears really well.

2. Glitter or no glitter?
I love glitter! I know that it is annoying to remove but it looks amazing! I often add a glitter accent nail to my manicure.

3. OPI, China Glaze or Essie?
This is tough as I love them all, but if I have to choose then it would be OPI!

4. When do you change your nail polish?
I usually take it off after around 4 days. I am not allowed to wear any for college so that can determine when I have to remove it!

5. What is your favourite colour on your nails?
I would have to say purple! It's my favourite colour and I probably own more purple nail polishes than any other colour. My favourite purple polishes would be OPI Lincoln Park After Dark, OPI Do You Lilac It? and OPI Ink.

6. Darks or brights?
I love both but if I had to choose I would say darks as they tend to be a little more wearable!

7. What are you wearing on your nails right now?
China Glaze Smoke and Ashes with China Glaze Luxe and Lush over the top from the new Capitol Colours collection.

8. Matte nails - in or out?
I am not a fan of matte nail polishes so I would say out!

9. French manicure?
I used to love French manicures but I haven't done one in ages! I prefer a solid colour but I do like the neatness of the French!

10. Favourite winter colour?
I would say a dark colour such as OPI Russian Navy or OPI Lincoln Park After Dark.

I would love to know your responses to these questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments section below or leave me a link to your site if you have already done it!
Maz x

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Revlon Lip Butters - Review & Swatches

Hi Everyone!
At last! The Revlon Lip Butter's are now available to buy in the UK! The lip butter's were launched in the US a few months ago and there has been so much hype around them online so I was thrilled to finally be able to get my hands on them! I ordered 2 of the colours in 'Pink Truffle' and 'Strawberry Shortcake'.
(L to R) Strawberry Shortcake, Pink Truffle
Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake: This is a really nice cool, bubblegum pink colour. It is quite sheer when you first apply it but then builds up to a nice rosy pink colour. It has a slight shine to it too which is nice.

Pink Truffle

Pink Truffle: This is a brown toned mauve colour and is a great, wearable, every day shade. I really like this one as it is so easy to wear. It applies really smoothly and evenly and is slightly more pigmented than Strawberry Shortcake.


(L to R) Strawberry Shortcake, Pink Truffle
I can see why these lip butters are so popular! They come in a great range of shades and are really moisturising. I found that they last around 3-4 hours which is great. I will definitely be getting some more.

Have you purchased any of the Revlon Lip Butters? If so, let me know what you think of them in the comments section below, any recommendations gratefully received!
You can purchase the Lip Butter's from Boots in the UK for £7.99 each (Boots currently have a 2 for £10 offer on selected Revlon products.
Maz x

Monday, 19 March 2012

NYX Luscious Lip Gloss Pallette - 02 The Naturals - Review & Swatches

Hi Everyone!

I recently purchased one of NYX's Luscious Lip Palettes in the colour 02 The Naturals for my make up kit. When working on clients I prefer to use palettes as it makes it easier to find and select a suitable colour. I really like NYX products as they are great quality for the money and these lip palettes are really affordable and come in a nice range of colours. This palette contains 5 really nice shades including some brown, pink and red tones neutrals.


These colours are not super pigmented but a nice enough. They are great if a client wants a natural lip and they aren't too sticky or shiny but provide a nice amount of gloss to the lip. They apply pretty smoothly and evenly too. My favourite colour from the palette has to be the fourth one, it is the most pigmented of the 5 shades and it really wearable on most age ranges and skin tones.

I purchased my palette from Cocktail Cosmetics for £8
Maz x

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Essie Tour de Finance Nail Polish - Review & Swatch

Hi Everyone!
Today I applied another one of the polishes from Essie's Navigate Her collection for Spring 2012. I selected Tour de Finance which is a bright fuchsia colour with a pearl finish.

I began by applying 2 coats of OPI Matte Nail Envy as my base followed by 2 coats of Tour de Finance. This polish applies really evenly and smoothly and was opaque after the first coat. I finished off by applying a layer of OPI Top Coat.

This colour is really bright and gorgeous! It reminds me of OPI's Flashbulb Fuchsia and is the perfect colour for Spring and Summer! The polish also looks like it has a subte purple sheen to it in the bottle bu this didn't seem to really transfer onto the nail.

You can purchase this polish from Look Fantastic for £5.95
Maz x

Friday, 16 March 2012

NARS Bad Education Lip Gloss - Review & Swatch

Hi Everyone!
I am a big fan of the TV show Gossip Girl and especially of Blair Waldorf, played by Leighton Meester. I recently researched the make up used on the show and found that Leighton has worn NARS's Bad Education lip gloss both on the show and off (Source: I always love her make up so thought I'd give it a go!

Picture from Cool Spotters

Bad Education is described as a 'Sheer crimson red'. I read that this gloss was used over NARS' Lipliner pencil in Jungle Red which is described as a 'Classic Red' colour, I also think that it looks great over MAC's Beet Lip Pencil too. This is such a nice shade and a really wearable red. I am quite pale and sometimes reds can look a little harsh on me but this one doesn't!


I really love this gloss! It's a gorgeous colour and one that I would definitely recommend if you want to try out a red lip for the first time. It is expensive, as all NARS products are, but it's great quality!
You can purchase this lip gloss from NARS for £17.50
Maz x

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

MAC Young Punk Mineralize Eye Shadow - Review & Swatch

Hi Everyone!
I am a sucker for a purple eyeshadow and I missed out on the chance to get Young Punk eyeshadow when it was released the first time around so when I saw that MAC had brought it back I was thrilled! Young Punk is described as a 'Mineralize black with pinkish and purple pearl'.

I really like MAC's Mineralize products but the eyeshadows can be a little hit or miss. Young Punk is a really good one though, it can be used dry and built up to achieve the desired effect or used wet to create a more pigmented look.


Left: Dry Swatch, Right: Wet Swatch

As you can see from the picture above this shadow is a really dark, black based purple. You get to see more of the purple when using the shadow wet and I think it would look great used wet, packed all over the lid. It would also look great used dry as a crease colour with a lighter purple on the lid to create a really dark, smokey purple eye.

You can purchase this eyeshadow from MAC for £16.50
Maz x

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Essie Navigate Her Nail Polish - Review & Swatches

Hi Everyone!
Today I applied Essie's Navigate Her nail polish from their Spring 2012 Collection of the same name. Navigate Her is described as a pistachio green colour with a creme finish is one of the six colours from the collection.

I began by applying 2 coats of OPI Matte Nail Envy as my base followed by 2 coats of Navigate Her. The polish has quite a thick consistency but dries pretty quickly. I found the application of the first coat was a little of the streaky side but the second coat solved this problem. I then applied a coat of Seche Vite Top Coat.

I really like this colour as it's a change from the usual pastel greens that you usually find in spring nail polish collections. It has a really nice opaque, creme finish that is typical of most Essie polishes in my opinion.

I purchased this polish as part of a mini set for £11.95 from Beauty Bay.

Check out my review of the Ole Caliente nail polish which is also from the Essie Navigate Her collection by clicking here.
Maz x

Friday, 9 March 2012

Malteaser Cupcakes

Hi Everyone!
This is a recipe that I have wanted to make for a while now and today I finally did! These cupcakes are made from a sponge cake containing malteasers and topped with a rich butter cream with crushed malteasers. Here's how to make them:

200g Softened Butter
150g Caster Sugar
50g Brown Sugar
2 drops of Vanilla Extract
4 Medium Eggs
200g Plain Flour
10g Baking Powder
Pinch of Salt
80g Malteasers
Butter cream:
250g Butter
500g Icing Sugar
2 drops of Vanilla Extract
55g Malteasers, roughly crushed

1. Pre heat oven to 180C/ Gas Mark 4 and place cupcake cases in tray.
2. Cream the butter, caster sugar and brown sugar together in a large bowl until light and fluffy.
3. Add the vanilla followed by one egg at a time, whisking well.
4. Fold in the sifted flour, baking powder and salt.
5. Stir in the malteasers.
6. Divide the mixture up evenly between the cupcake cases and bake for around 25 minutes.

To make the butter cream:
1. Whisk the butter, icing sugar and vanilla extract together in a bowl until pale and fluffy.
2. Spoon or pipe the butter cream on to the cakes and decorate with the crushed malteasers.

These cupcakes are gorgeous! The addition of the brown sugar in the sponge makes it even tastier and also gives it a more caramelised flavour. They are quite sickly and rich though so best left to the occasional treat!

I found this recipe on the UK TV website. The recipe states that it makes 12 cakes but I found I had extra mixture left over for another 3!
Maz x

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Blair's Gossip Girl Wedding Lip Gloss?

Hi Everyone!

I am such a big fan of the TV show Gossip Girl and loved the 100th episode which was recently shown here in the UK. Blair is my favourite character and I always love her make up on the show. In this episode we see her getting ready for her wedding using a large Chanel compact and applying a lip gloss in a gorgeous pink colour. As soon as I saw this scene I had to find out which lip gloss was used! As she was using a Chanel compact I immediately presumed that the lip gloss was by Chanel also but on closer inspection it looks like it wasn't! I researched this gloss quite a bit on the Internet and it looks likely that the gloss used was a Revlon Super Lustrous Lip Gloss in the colour Pink Pop so I purchased it and looking at it I would say it is pretty close even if it isn't the exact one!

Pink Pop, as the name suggests, is a bright pink colour and is nicely pigmented. I like the formula of this gloss and it's not too heavy or sticky and it applies smoothly. It also looks great worn on it's own and doesn't need a lipstick underneath in my opinion.


Overall this is a great quality lip gloss, especially for a drugstore brand, and is in a really nice colour. Whether or not it is the exact one worn by Blair at her wedding I can't be sure but it is a lovely gloss either way!

I purchased this lip gloss from Tiger Liley Cosmetics for £6.94
Maz x

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Benefit They're Real! Mascara Review

Hi Everyone!
So I have to begin this post by saying that I have never been a fan of spending a lot of money on high-end mascara's as I always feel that drugstore brands, in particular L'Oreal and Max Factor produce some really good ones, however, I had read so many positive reviews out Benefit's new 'They're Real!' mascara that I gave in and got it!

I really like the size of the brush, it's not too big and not too small. The end of the brush is rounded off. almost into a small ball shape which makes it great at reaching your inner lashes. The colour is a nice rich black shade which leaves a lovely effect on the eye. The mascara works well at separating and volumising your lashes.

I really don't have a bad thing to say about this mascara! I like the packaging, the brush and the effect on the lashes. The big question is: Is it worth the pretty large price tag? Well £18.50 is a lot of money to spend on a mascara but it is really good and definitely better than the ones that I usually use! Would I repurchase? Yes I probably would!

You can purchase this mascara from Benefit for £18.50
Maz x

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Ciate Burlesque & OPI Show it & Glow it Nail Polishes

Hi Everyone!
After loving Ciate's Cookies and Cream nail polish so much I decided to grab another bottle from the brand! This time I went for Burlesque which is a deep, eggplant purple shade. I love purple nail polishes and my favourite nail polish of all time is OPI's Lincoln Park After Dark and I have to say that Burlesque is a pretty close dupe for it!

Ciate Burlesque

I began by applying 2 coats of OPI's Matte Nail Envy as my base followed by 2 coats of Burlesque. The Ciate brushes are great and make application really easy. The polish goes on really evenly and smoothly and is fully opaque after the first coat but I always apply 2. The polish is also really quick drying.

OPI Show it and Glow it

I think that the current trend for painting an accent nail in either a different colour or finish is so pretty so I decided to add a glitter to my ring fingers. I chose OPI's Show it and Glow it from their 2010 Burlesque collection which is a gorgeous polish containing magenta and silver round glitter. I then finished off by adding a coat of Seche Vite Top Coat.

You can purchase Ciate Burlesque nail polish from Ciate for £9.
I purchased OPI Show it and Glow it just after the collection was released in 2010, it may still be available to buy from some online stockists.
Maz x


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