Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Get Ready With Me! (Video)

I've just uploaded the 'get ready with me' video that I filmed yesterday...

Post shower hair and no make-up aren't my strongest looks but I decided to brave it. If you fancy a look at me transform from Hans Moleman into regular every day Charli - please take a look!

(I'm talking to my best friend and boyfriend throughout but cut the audio so you didn't have to hear the nonsense that we discuss...)

Click through to watch it on YouTube :)


Nudes Nudes Nudes

Until quite recently, I've not been a nude lipstick wearer (yep, this post is about make-up, apologies if the title suggested otherwise...) often choosing reds and plums over nudes. I used to think I couldn't pull off nudes since I'm a moon-bather.... Well I was WRONG - what a numpty - nudes suit EVERYONE and lucky for little pale me, Illamasqua have just released a full line of nude lipsticks in varying undertones to suit all skin types.

I have been wearing lots of brown tones on my lips of late (90s/the craft/glamour corpse vibes) so was very excited to see some delicious brown-toned lipsticks in the new Illamasqua Glamore shades.
Unlike the majority of Illamasqua's lipsticks (which are matte matte matte) the Glamore lipsticks have a satin finish and while, personally, I'm a huge fan of matte finish products, a lot of people prefer the texture and ease of application of a satin lipstick. I own the three original Glamore shades so know that the colour payoff and staying power of these is still just as strong as matte lipstick so couldn't wait to try the nudes out!

Since I have about 9 million lipsticks, I showed a little restraint and chose just three shades (for now)... It's been hard deciding on my favourite out of the 7 new nude shades, but the following three are all in the running - I've posted a few selfies on instagram (@charlixo if you please) wearing a couple of the shades and everyone seems to be just as enamored with them as I am, so I thought I'd post a couple more pictures here.

So here are my three favourites from the new colours in the Illamasqua Glamore range. Sorry (ntsry) about the amount of pouting in the photos - can't help myself!

Buff, Rosepout & Minx...

Buff is the first shade I was drawn to - the most obviously brown (and, therefore, 90s) shade of the bunch. I've spoken about my love of brown tones in previous posts and videos, so it was no surprise that Buff is one of my top choices! For the sake of continuity, I've used the same lip pencil with all three lipsticks in my pictures ('Woo' lip colouring pencil from Illamasqua) but can't wait to wear this colour with a much darker brown liner for super 90s Pam Anderson vibes. The lighting in every room of my house decided to be TERRIBLE when I tried to take a swatch picture so it does look a little lighter in these than in real life (my house has some awesome weird windows but it doesn't make for a very good photo taking environment).

Rosepout is described as a 'neutral pink/brown' which is ideal for the pinky undertone in my skin (plus the name is cuuuuute) I think it's an amazing 60's shade so paired with darker eyes/graphic liner, it's going to look amazing. It's actually a lot lighter than I would usually wear but it doesn't make me look like I'm rocking a 'concealer-lip' or wash me out at all. Again, both photos here show me wearing it with 'Woo' pencil from Illamasqua, which is a neutral brown shade that helps give it extra definition and pout power. I think Rosepout has the sweetest name of the bunch and makes for a really flattering pink lip.

Minx is the shade that I can see myself wearing the most as it's a little deeper in colour, and closer to my usual lipstick choices - slightly stronger in colour than the other nudes, it's a gorgeous deep dusky rose tone and is a perfect shade for a 'just been kissed' look - if you're after some 'post makeout sesh' lips, Minx is probably the colour for you. Like all the other Glamore shades, Minx glides on like a dream and really stays put! I'm looking forward to pairing it with different pencils (dark pinks and plums) for a delicious ombre too!

I'm planning a couple of tutorials to be filmed over the next few weeks and a lip one is in the mix - now I just have to decide which one of my new faves to use!


Just a short post for today, I'm still recovering from my birthday weekend and want to have a little lay down... I'll be back with more soon!

Thanks for reading!


Sunday, 13 July 2014

Bloody Mary Metal - Leeds Pop-Up Shop Treats

It's no secret that I'm in love with Bloody Mary Metal jewellery. I'd go as far as saying it's my favourite jewellery EVER if I'm honest.

Until yesterday I had three beautiful BMM rings (see picture in my previous post) - my first and second - the Water Alchemy sign and Ambers Arrow - presents from Miles, and the Lonely Bone - a present from my parents last Christmas. I'm pretty pleased that this has already become a tradition and with my birthday coming up in 5 days, my Mum noticing that there was going to be a BMM pop up shop in Leeds this weekend and knowing how much I love it, I got told to pick out an early present from my parents (yessssssss).

It was lovely to finally (if only briefly) meet Lucy who is the genius (and total babe) behind Bloody Mary Metal. As is often the case nowadays, we've had some interaction through Instagram - usually me telling her to 'STAHP' followed by heart eyes emoji on photos of her delicious creations - but it was great to put an IRL face to a name. It's also always nice to hear a fellow southern accent up here (although Cornwall is even more southern  than my Bedfordshire roots!) - I can pick one out of a crowd instantly ;)

Before popping down to the pop-up, I'd perused the BMM website (as I probably do once a week, minimum) to choose what I wanted - answer: EVERYTHING - but when I saw all the delicious treats Lucy had on offer (after being distracted by an amazing cake made especially for the occasion) it was so hard to decide!
There were brand new designs from the upcoming Luna Tribe collection and all of the awesome existing designs that I've been lusting after but I chose my adorable tooth ring because I've had my eye on it for a while now. 
Naturally, the first one I tried fit my finger like Cinderella's slipper fit her trotters so it was definitely meant to be.

I've decided to be well behaved and keep the ring in the box until my actual birthday but couldn't resist a quick photo with it. I'm building quite the collection now! (also haaaaay got my nails did, sparkley shellac gurrrl)

I also got a Bloody Mary Metal goodie bag which I wasn't expecting - stickers, badges, flyers (nice to see a little picture of mine and my pal Laura's hands featured - bottom row, second from the left!) and a threadbare charm bracelet!! I got the moon charm (which is my favourite) and the cord is blue to match my hair! It's like the gifted jewellery gods were looking down on me that evening I tell ya.

There were sweets in the goodie bag too but in the excitement these no longer exist to be photographed... 

Here's a photo of all my treats, including some BMM themed nail decals that I'm also really psyched to use - thank you so much for being wonderful Lucy - you've only cemented my love for your amazing jewels.

For those of you that haven't checked Bloody Mary Metal out, do it right now. I've linked the shit out of this post so there's no excuse not to! For those of you that already know (and, undoubtedly, love) BMM you'll know how exciting all of this is and I can't wait for the Luna Tribe collection to be available online so I can treat myself to even more come payday.

Team BMM forever.


Wednesday, 9 July 2014

OOTD - Black is the new Black

On my previous blog I did a few outfit posts, when I was trying to force myself to wear more colour and avoid all black. Now I have to wear all black at work and this usually transfers into my days off, that's not really a possibility. I'm not going to pretend I'm bothered by this because 98% of my wardrobe (and additional clothes rail, and the clothes piled on the spare bed, on Miles' side of the bedroom, in my basket on multiple websites...) is black and since I'm 'curvy' it's much more flattering than bright patterns.

I can't avoid looking like a little goth because my skin is white as snow (with a ton of freckles, can goths have freckles?) and black is hard to photograph well when all you have is an iPhone, but here is my attempt... It can be hard to wear all black daily and still manage to switch it up a little and after finding myself in a bit of a clothes/personal make-up rut, I want to challenge myself to make the most of my vast black wardrobe as well as pushing myself a little with my day to day make-up looks. Documenting this on here seems like a good way to do it, so that's what I plan to do.

That said, here is my first (of hopefully numerous) - all black - OOTD posts.

So today's vibe was this:

Soz about the awkward face (it's just how it looks when I'm not taking a selfie) but here are the details of this outfit.
You will soon see that I should probably be sponsored by boohoo.com because they're amazing for really cheap essentials and I buy SO much from there.

- Strap top - boohoo.com
- Lace kimono - boohoo.com (I wear this all the time, it hides my arms and blows in the wind and I feel like a witch in flight)
- Tight skirt - H&M (not going to pretend you can even see this, but it covers the junk in my trunk and stops leggings looking inappropriate)
- Shoes - vintage Doc Martens (the best kind of DMs - already broken in for me!)

Accessories deets:

- Necklace - Zara (I get asked about this a lot, because it's goddamn fabulous - it's all one necklace, jingles when I move and was a gift last year)

Please allow my freckley hands... 

- Bracelet - eBay (years ago, haven't a clue who the seller was sorry)

Rings, from left to right...
- Gemstone - Leeds farmers market
- Water sign - Bloody Mary Metal (my ALL TIME FAVE for jewels)
- Midi rings - and old family ring and a plain band from asos marketplace 
- Ambers arrow - Bloody Mary Metal
- White stone - eBay
- Moonstone - eBay
- Lonely bone - Bloody Mary Metal (told you she was my fave)
- Plain band above lonely bone - Leeds market
- Orb - Vivienne Westwood (sometime you just gotta treat yo self)

In case you haven't gathered, I like jewellery - lots of it. If you can't hear me coming like a witchy Santa Claus, I'm not doing it right. 
This line up is pretty much the usual suspects when it comes to my ring selections, give or take a few, and the Bloody Mary Metal ones NEVER come off. They were all gifts from either Miles or my parents and they're my most cherished jewellery possessions.

I generally rely on accessories to sass up my black outfit choices, but since I'm a make-up artist, my make-up should probably do this too. Because of this, I decided to try something totally new with my eyes today. 

I snoozed my alarm 7 million times this morning (3) so I don't know why today of all days was the one on which I decided to try something extra sassy out, but I was pretty happy with the result considering how little time I had to do it.

So this was my face today:

Products used for the eyes were:
(All Illamasqua)
- eyeshadows in Daemon, Dizzy and Sex
- precision gel liner 
- my trusty number 14 lashes 

I've been asked to do a tutorial of this, which I'm totally up for doing, I just need a couple more attempts to get the technique down before it'll be worth watching - unless you would enjoy watching me get frustrated and exclaiming 'oh piss' constantly (a regular phrase in my getting ready ritual) that is.

I think that's the general gist of my appearance today. I'll be back soon with another post of some kind and promise promise promise to film more videos ASAP. I'm burning the candle and both ends and the bloody middle at the moment but I'll be sure to make the time!

Here is an outtake which I will call 'wait, can you see my bra?' 

Thanks for reading little pals,

Lots of love,


Tuesday, 8 July 2014

IMATS Haul 2014 - Part 2

So I've finally got around to posting part two of my IMATS haul, life really gets in the way of fun doesn't it??

In my previous post I showed you pictures and swatches of my new Sugarpill, Lime Crime and OCC goodies - this time it's the brushes and storage bits I got my little lipstick stained hands on.

Here's an artfully shot picture of the brushes I got from Crown Brushes: 

I've numbered them for ease ;)

I don't know their exact names but for description/explanation sake:
1. Medium blending brush
2. Small blending brush
3. Silicone glitter applicator
4. Pointed lip brush (x2!)
5. Bent liner brush
6. Small angled brush
7. Chisel shader brush 

I love Crown Brushes for cheap additions to my personal set and make-up kit, and while there's always a risk that the price reflects the quality, the majority of Crown Brushes I've used have really stood the test of time.

I went for a selection of the smaller brushes available as I already have a huge array of powder/blusher/foundation brushes but if I'm honest, I'd happily buy a million of every kind of brush because they've recently become my new obsession. I like trying out new designs, fibres and brands but my budget at IMATS wasn't a million pounds (a girl can dream) so I had to go with at least a vague list of necessary purchases.


1&2 - I initially thought these two were real hair (as per my comment in my haul video) but after checking the Crown Brush site I think I found them to be synthetic. Number 1 at least is the 'Syntho DLX Blending Crease Brush' (maybe... they have SO many)
Regardless of the texture both of these give a similar result to real hair blending brushes. 
They're perfect for blending out powders on the lid and in the crease - I got two sizes because I'm a grown woman and I can do what I want, plus, the little one is great to get in a little tighter in the socket/crease as well as under the eyes.
I usually like to smudge out eyeshadow under the eye with a firmer 'pencil' brush (like the Illamasqua 'Smoulder' brush or my new chisel brush - number 7 in the lineup) but this is brilliant for even softer edges one the initial smudging is done. 

3. This little creepy looking guy is the perfect glitter or loose eyeshadow applicator. You can use it to pat glitter directly onto the lid and avoid moving the product around too much and losing intensity (like you might with a bristled brush) - I'm really excited to use this with my new OCC and Sugarpill loose shadows that I showed you previously as well as the million loose pigments and eyeshadows I have already. Having a tool specifically designed for glitter application fills me with more childlike glee than perhaps it should, but I'm 100% not sorry about it.

4. I got two of the same pointed lip brushes and this wasn't a 'sensory overload at IMATS' induced mistake - I have an infinite amount of lip brushes in all shapes and sizes in my kit but have recently found myself using them for my own eyeliner. 
I use a gel liner (Illamasqua 'Infinity' Gel Liner to be precise) and have previously stuck to fine liners or angled brushes to apply it, which have both been as good as each other, but since trying with a lip brush I'm obsessed. These were a ridiculous price like 3 pence (£2?) each so realistically I should have bought 9 but I had to show some restraint.

5. With liners in mind (and seemingly contradictory to my previous point) - I've never actually had a bent liner brush so thought I would give this one a try - despite my mum's reaction ('oh no it's broken!' - she has since retracted this statement) I do really like using fine liners on clients and this one is really thin.
A few of my older fine liners have seen better days and look more like fan brushes now, but this will be lovely for super definition. 

6. This little angled brush will be great for multiple things (liner/eyebrows included) but I've got it primarily for lip lining (ooh she likes to switch it up doesn't she?) - it's small enough to get right into the Cupid's bow and since it's synthetic it'll work well with creams and liquids. I have a ridiculous amount of angled brushes as I won't do a brow without them (see my eyebrow tutorial for more on this!) but since I'm young and free and YOLO (sorry, I hate myself) another won't hurt!

7. This little fella is just great for intensifying a cut crease, shading in the socket or applying shadow under the lower lash line. It's not quite as wide as a pencil type brush so you can get extra definition without going in with an angled brush (for example) and it's super sturdy, as it's 'chisel' name would suggest.
I've put this one to the most use already and I love it.


As well as brushes, I got myself a little cosmetic organiser from Crown Brushes. I'm pretty sure you can get these anywhere, the packaging for mine suggests they got this from the 80s, but a simple google search for 'plastic cosmetic organiser' will bring up plenty of results located in 2014.
I have a real thing (a real problem?) when it comes to stationary/office supplies and this compulsion spans into cosmetic storage too. Unfortunately our spare room doesn't reflect this (soz, Miles) - anything that isn't in my kit (and the overflow kit/suitcase) that is for personal use has it's place in my organised bomb site/floordrobe and we're moving house soon so it doesn't make sense to gut the place for the sake of totally organising it... Plus I like to procrastinate so this will do for now! 

I have elegantly displayed it here with my IMATS purchases, but it's now in the spare room in a less picturesque (but more useful) setting:


Finally - I LOVE false lashes. I also love cute shit. So this happened:

It's the eyelash storage box of my dreams and I've been wanting once since the beginning of time/last year when I saw one on Instagram.
There's room for three pairs of lashes (almost always Illamasqua 14s) and a little space for lash glue at the top too.

Kawaii as hell.


On top of all of this I got some cosmetic sanitiser stuff (probably too boring to post) and spent nearly £5 on a cheese sandwich but I'm already having IMATS withdrawals and am counting down the days til next year. 

Thanks for patiently sticking with me while I took my sweet time to write about the second half of the haul and also for wading through the nonsense and terrible jokes that make up the majority of this post. 
Also thanks to everyone who has subscribed/watched/liked/commented on the haul video (and eyebrow tutorial too!) - you are all my sweet princes and I have 2 weeks off work soon so can film loads more videos to say thanks.

Lots of love!


Monday, 30 June 2014

IMATS Haul 2014 - Part 1

On Saturday I went to IMATS in London.
I last went about 4 years ago and this time (having a good few years more experience and knowledge) was a million times more fun!

I had the intention of treating myself and went with a few key products in mind but I could've spent my entire wage in one day on the awesome things I saw!

I've filmed a video showing all the things (and getting very excited) but my camera didn't do a great job of focusing on them (or, I'm just rubbish at showing them properly) so thought it was worth posting pictures of them here too.

So here is my IMATS 2014 haul - part one (I got so much stuff, I didn't want to overwhelm you in one post!) - Keep reading for goodies from OCC makeup and Sugarpill :)

Very excited, clearly...

The first (and then, last) stand I visited was the OCC stand - I've been lusting over their lip tars online for a while and since they aren't stocked in the UK it was a great chance to see them in person. The problem was, once I'd seen them in person, I wanted them ALL. I ended up taking 4 (and then coming back for one more) - but I am definitely going to be ordering more online as soon as I can! OCC products are 100% vegan and cruelty free and while I'm not vegan myself, I definitely support brands that are. Previously, some vegan cosmetics that I've used haven't been as vivid or highly pigmented as I'd like, but OCC ticks all the boxes.

The team were awesome, all really helpful and friendly and the guy who was serving me (I didn't catch his name, but he was wonderful) totally got me when I said I liked lipsticks that 'kinda make me look dead' - really glad he didn't run away... gotta appreciate a brand that welcomes the 'glamour corpse' vibe.

So, these were my purchases!

Lip Tars in:
1 - Black Metal Dahlia
2 - Pretty Boy
3 - RX
4 - Sebastian
5 - Lydia

Loose Colour in:
1 - Overlook
2 - Twirl
3 - Jubilee
and Cream Colour in Discipline (number 4)

Apologies for the quality of the swatch pictures - the light wasn't great - and the lip tars swatch picture will just not upload the right way round (technology dammit)  but I'll do a full post about these (with pictures of me wearing them) soon because I'm in love.

I also got the Lip Balm Duo from OCC - it comes with a sheer black ('Tarred') and sheer white ('Feathered') balm that can be used to darken or lighten the lip colour on top - this is really exciting for me because I love an ombre lip and am definitely going to be experimenting with using the duo and a singular lip colour for the ombre effect!

There's no point swatching these on their own (as I found out in my video) as they're sheer on the skin and you can't see anything... I'll use them with another product on top soon I promise!


I visited the Sugarpill stand and got to meet and take a picture with Amy, the founder. She was really lovely (and tiny in comparison to me) - I won't post the picture here because I look repulsive, but if you follow me on instagram (@charlixo) it's on there!

I'm a huge fan of Sugarpill's packaging, it's totally adorable (much like their entire team) and have never owned any of their products before so got the Burning Heart palette (I called it the 'Flaming Heart' palette in my video, nice one Charli), a loose eyeshadow in Royal Sugar and went back later on for their eyeshadow in Kitten Parade. I actually didn't plan on getting more after my first visit but come on, it's called KITTEN PARADE for goodness sake, how could I not?

(Again, swatch apologies - I'm blaming bad lighting, not bad camera skills)



Nearly impossible to photograph, but delicious

I really can't wait to play around with all of these. As I so eloquently put it in my video - 'I wish I had 5 faces' so I could wear it all at once.


In the next update of my IMATS haul (well done if you've got this far!) I'll show you my new Limecrime Velvetine, Crown Brushes and some make-up storage that I got on the day too.

For the sake of showing off the products as much a possible/vanity - here is a selfie from before I filmed the video wearing OCC products on my eyes and lips (Discipline cream colour and Jubilee Loose Colour on the peepers and Lip Tar in Lydia on my lips)

As a sneak peek of more to come, here's a picture of all my purchases combined:


Thanks for reading so far! I'll be back asap with another haul post and more pictures of all my treats.


Monday, 23 June 2014

Starting over...

I've decided to start a new blog!

My old blog - Valentine Xo - had been abandoned so long, it felt weird to start up again, so I thought I'd start fresh (just with a similar layout - some things are hard to let go of!)

A few months ago, I posted my first ever video make-up tutorial and it recently hit over 1000 views (which is totally mental, still can't quite believe that many people have watched me awkwardly talking to the camera...) - and thought that blogging and vlogging (?) go hand in hand, so should pick up the former alongside the latter.

I have every intention of filming a new tutorial super soon (just need to get my bum in gear, but have zero time at the moment) but can let my keyboard do the talking too!


On my previous blog I did product reviews, outfit posts, one makeup photo tutorial, a film review (oh Moonrise Kingdom, I still love you) and lots of posts based on pictures I'd seen that had given me an eye boner - so I'm sure you can expect to see more of all of these, alongside my video adventures too.

While my primary subject matter in videos is probably going to be make-up (products/application/tips & tricks) - the range of subjects on the blog will be a little more broad - suggestions for both are always warmly welcomed!


I absolutely HATE 'about me' sections, I really struggle to sum myself up so succinctly (at least, without sounding like a total n00b) - my interests in general chop and change regularly and I fall in and out of 'omg totally OB$E$$ED' with things on a daily basis - this is down to me having the attention span of a small child in a sparkley room -  but, to start with, here are a few (relatively) long-standing things about me that will most likely shape the direction of this blog, so, let me begin:

I'm a make-up artist, it's my full time job (and then some) - and it feels awesome to finally be able to say that - so, understandably, I spend a lot of my time playing with/lusting after make-up, hence the subject matter of my youtube video (currently singular, soon to be plural). I get asked a lot of questions - how/what/which/where/why - about various make-up related issues, so my youtube seemed like a good place to answer those while simultaneously coming to terms with my annoying voice.

I love sofia coppola and wes anderson (both of whom have had posts written on my previous blog about their GENIUS) as well as cats/glitter/witchy vibes/being nostalgic for eras I haven't experienced/religious iconography/leonardo dicaprio (so... tumblr/tumblr/tumblr - ugh.)

I have a worrying obsession with wrapping presents - when I say worrying, I mean it worries my boyfriend when I can't pass a nice roll of wrapping paper or gift bag (or ribbon/string/bows/tinsel/anything to adorn a lovingly wrapped gift) - without buying it ALL. I don't really think it's worrying, I think it's fun and that I'm hashtag big in the wrap game (...I hate myself).

I also totally hoard stationery, but again see this as a positive personality trait - always prepared for note taking/constantly aesthetically pleased by paper... It's the little things.

I'm trying to force myself to read more, I used to read constantly, but now I'm currently about half way through 4 books with no real intention to finish any of them. Book suggestions are very welcome, and loans (from those of you who know me IRL) are too!

Finally, I really like food but am trying to eat less of it, or at least, less of the bad stuff (but it tastes so GOOD) in an attempt to lose weight for various social events in the coming months, wish me luck!

In summary - make-up/virgin suicides/wes anderson/cats/leo4eva/wrapping/stationery/books/food/life.


I think that's enough babbling on for now, I'm starting to cringe at myself and if anyone is actually reading this, they're probably doing the same - I do tend to waffle on, but don't we all? If any of this sounds like something you'd be interested in, be sure to keep an eye out for future posts

If it sounds boring to you, that's fine too - no one is forcing you to keep your peepers open, so feel free to close them and this tab.

If you've made it this far, thanks for taking the time to read it all! I'll (hopefully) be back soon with something interesting to say and will make sure to link any videos I do as well, so for now, bye!