Hello and Merry Christmas to you all! This officially marks my last working Monday of 2014 and I for one am very much looking forward to some time off to spend eating chocolate and watching movies with my family, friends, and other half. And of course, if Santa decides to send a present or two my way, I wouldn’t mind at all! ‘Tis the season as they say, and here’s how I’m gearing up for this year’s festivities – my favorite party make-up and some thrifty Christmas decoration ideas for you to try!
With the season that’s in it, a time of endless social engagements, work lunches, parties etc., I thought I ‘d share my staple products that I always come back to for party make-up. And without doubt, I always opt for a feline flick of eyeliner, full black lashes and bi ol’ red pout. I’m all for a smokey eye, but when you going from desk to dance floor, slicking on some red lippie is definitely the way to go! Glam in no time – and if you can’t be just that at this time of the year, then when can you?! Start with a good base of foundation, concealer and a touch of powder and then comes the fun stuff. No need for fancy eye shadows or blending, you just need a neutral eye and a steady hand. I would advise popping your mascara on before your eyeliner too – this gives you a guide of where to angle your flick and how close to get to the lash line. My eye make-up picks are both from Rimmel – The Glam Eyes Liquid Eyeliner being a longstanding favourite and make-up bag necessity, and the Wonder’Full Mascara being a much newer purchase, but one which definitely stands up to review. The formulation of the eyeliner combined with the long soft nib creates ease of application and a long lasting look, whilst the mascara gives full, blacker than black lashes in just one coat. The latter contains the buzz ingredient of the moment, argan oil, which genuinely does leave lashes feeling soft with little to no clumps. It re-applies really well too, which as we all know, is of major concern when you need your make-up look to last throughout the day and well into the evening. Don’t forget to curl your lashes for extra va-va-voom too!
The next step is my secret weapon: contouring. I’ve rambled on about the magic of highlighting and defining before, but I’ll say it again – pick yourself up one these handy powder contour and highlight kits and you’ll never look back!! Mine is from Sleek which is now available in Boots, with this particular compact coming in three shades from light to dark (this one being the lightest). Contouring is great for when you want to add that little extra glam to your night time look, especially when there is an iPhone camera lurking at every turn, waiting to capture the night’s festivities (and dodgy dance floor antics!). This palette is a perfect starter kit – I haven’t quite graduated to using cream formulas for that Photoshop finish. Use the highlighter on your cheekbones, under the brow bone and down the centre of the nose. Then apply the darker contour powder on the hollow of your cheeks, around in a “c” shape up towards the temples and the outer hairline, then a small bit down each side of your nose and under chin. Then blend, blend, and blend some more. Used sparingly, and applied with care, contouring really does make a difference to your face, and really helps the rest of carefully applied make-up to shine.
Then comes the cherry on top – red lips, or should I say, instant glam and polish in a tube. My favourite combo to achieve a flawless red lip is a creamy lip liner and matte lipstick: more specifically Maybelline Colour Sensation Lip Liner in number 547 in “Pleasure Me Red” and Mac Lipstick in “Ruby Woo”. I’m not sure if this liner is still stocked in shops as I can’t seem to find it online, but I would also recommend Rimmel, Catrice and MAC for alternative versions with creamy texture and intense colour. The lipstick is a classic and I firmly believe every girl should have a tube of Ruby Woo at her disposal! To create a high impact red lip, first take the time to carefully line your lips to a nicely defined, full shape and then fill in the rest of your pout with the pencil too. Use a fine brush to apply you chosen red, apply a small bit of powder and then apply another coat of lipstick.That should last through half of Christmas dinner anyway! What’s your go to party make-up look this Christmas?
Christmas can be an expensive time, and having to start from scratch when it came to Christmas decorating, I can attest to this! I had to get very thrifty and enterprising when it came to filling my home with Christmas cheer this year, and I thought I ‘d share on or two ways you could do the same! First was this crafty Christmas heart bunting. Instead of forking out ten euro at the least for ready-made bunting., I took Christmas decorations I had lying around, strung them onto a piece of rustic brown twine (cheap as chips in your local hardware shop) et voila, crafty bunting to create further festive fun in your home. You could do this with any hanging decorations you happen to have at home – baubles, stars, anything you like, and you can tailor in your chosen colour scheme! Just make sure to tie the decorations in place by looping the ribbon or string of the ornament twice around the twine, just so they won’t slide out of place! Then tape, pin or fix the garland anywhere you can think of – mine is strung over a chair in my sitting room and I absolutely love how it looks, so get creative! I’m tempted to make another with the myriad of sparkly candy canes that I have too…Nothing like a bit of yuletide ingenuity, eh?
Another really bargainous update is based on that old reliable: the poinsettia. You’d be hard pressed to find a supermarket that doesn’t have these red leafy beauties stockpiled at the entrance, and if you are in the market for one, I spotted them in Tesco for €2 this morning! Of course the little orange plastic pots they come in aren’t particularly Christmassy or even pretty, so I came up with an easy and cheap way to update the look of this festive flower. All you need is a bit of scrap material (I used an old pillowcase!), a scissors and some twine or ribbon. Pop your plant down on top of the material and cut a square around it, big enough that it covers all sides of the pot when gathered up but not so big that there’s huge amounts of excess material. This is easier done by eye according to the size of your particular pot. Then round off the corners of the square slightly and gathered up around the pot, fixing with some red twine and then a big red bow as the finishing. There’s no need to be too neat or precise and can you get let your imagination run wild with fabric and ribbon combinations.
Hopefully those little updates will have you in the Christmas mood, and of course if you have any festive make-up tips or DIY ideas, send ’em my way in the comments!
Until next time! xx