November Favourites

There's been quite a few products I've been enjoying using this month. One of my absolute favourite fragrances is YSL Baby Doll. It was the one of the first perfumes I wore in my teenage years and I still love it to this day. Baby Doll is a very feminine, flirty, floral scent. Officially, its a fruity floral scent with detectable notes of rose, blackcurrant and vanilla. Just lovely.
I mentioned in this post here that I've been using the Nip and Fab Shine Fix Mattifying Gel under my foundation to try keep my oily skin under control. So far, it is definitely helping to keep my t-zone shine free for longer.
Although I don't consider myself to be a fan of Kate Moss, I really like her collaboration with Rimmel, in particular the Matte Lipstick line - My favourite is 110, which I'm swatched in this post. For a matte lipstick, its very comfortable to wear, without drying out lips. As my lips are quite dry, especially at this time of year, I like to wear the Hurraw night treatment lipbalm underneath my lipstick to keep my lips soft.
After hearing the hype over the Collection 2000 lasting perfection concealer, I caved in and have to say that I totally see what the fuss is about. It has a very creamy texture that feels much more expensive than it is. It lasts all day and covers imperfections really well. A makeup bag staple.

Being a huge fan of blush, I usually rotate them on a daily basis depending on my mood. However, I've been wearing Bobbi Brown Nude Peach a lot lately. Its a soft peach, the finish is similar to MAC's satin finish blushes except with slight shimmer. I love wearing this shade as it looks perfect on my pale skin, adding a healthy glow to my complexion.

My all time favourite gel liner is MAC's fluidline. I've been mainly wearing the shade Avenue which is a black/brown with subtle gold shimmer (limited edition). I apply with a Sigma Liner Brush which applies flawlessly. Its pretty much foolproof. The consistency is so creamy and long wearing. Love.

Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette

Following on from the success of the Urban Decay Naked Palettes, UD are launching the Naked Basics Palette - a six pan palette comprising matte shades:

Venus Soft, off-white demi-matte
Foxy Very light yellow/beige matte
Walk of Shame Very light pinky nude matte
Naked 2 Rosy taupe matte
Faint Warm, dusty brown matte
Crave Deepest, darkest brown/black matte

The palette launches in the US this week and hopefully the UK wont be far behind!

The amazing Christine from Temptalia has all the images and swatches here and here

primers for oily/combination skin

Primer is a staple in my makeup bag.  My skin (particularly my t-zone) is very oily so I use a primer to create a flawless finish and help my foundation to stay put throughout the day. Recently I've introduced two new primers into my routine to try and help combat the need for constant blotting.

Murad Hybrids Skin Perfecting Primer is a tinted oil free, mattifying primer that controls oil. It creates a smooth finish and minimises pores and imperfections. As its tinted it can be used under foundation or on its own. It creates a flawless finish and my makeup stays put, although my t-zone still gets oily and I still need to blot. At £29 I do think its a little overpriced. There are a lot of cheaper primers on the market that may perform similar to this so I think I would try something else instead of repurchasing.

The Nip & Fab Shine Fix Mattifying Gel is a clear gel that reduces oil and helps to purify and deep clean pores to reduce blackheads. I use the primer on my t-zone and really find it helps to balance my skin. It does say it can be used throughout the day but I use it under foundation as I worry that it would remove my foundation if I used it over the top. For £9.95 I'm really impressed with this product. I don't need to blot as often and my foundation stays put all day. I'm not sold on the reducing blackheads claim. I really haven't noticed a difference in that area but as it reduces shine really well I'm pretty sure I will repurchase!

Do you use a primer? If so,what do you use?

Pretty Tattoos!

Until recently, I never really thought about getting a tattoo. I've always appreciated them on others but since browsing various blogs, I would really like to get one. I havent decided what to get yet but it would be something meaningful and personal.
I thought it would be nice to share some of my favourite designs I've discovered on the web. Stupidly I didnt note the sources so if an image belongs to you let me know.

Sigma Brushes

I'm a big fan of Sigma Brushes. Not only are they affordable but the quality is amazing.

I've mentioned a few favourites on here before but I have a few more to share with you.

The F82 Round Kabuki* is great for buffing in foundation and powder. Its soft but also dense to allow flawless application.

The E60 Large Shader and E70 Medium Angled Shading brushes are perfect for shadow application. The Large Shader is ideal for applying a base shadow or primer whilst the Medium Angled shading brush is fab for applying colour to the crease.

To blend shadows I use the E25 Blending Brush* (I have the travel size version). Its comparable to the MAC 217 blending brush which I mentioned here. The MAC one is tapered whilst Sigma's isnt. However The E25 performs just as well and is just as soft.

For eyebrows, I use the E75 Angled Brow Brush. This brush is amazing. The angled shape allows a precise application of brow colour and the firm bristles perfects the shape of the brow.

Sigma are currently offering free worldwide first class shipping with the code BF2012. Although it can't be used with the 10% off code its still a really good deal as shipping can be pretty pricey!

Have you tried Sigma brushes?
What are your favourites?

The Body Shop Treats

The Body Shop always seem to have fab deals online. I recently purchased a few earth lovers shower gels on offer at £1 each instead of the usual £5.

The earth lovers line are unfragranced, paraben, sulphate and colourant free and 100% biodegradable.

I use shower gel to feel extra squeaky clean and these certainly live up to that. Although the formula is very watery, it lathers really well and the scent is very subtle.

My skin feels supersoft and refreshed after usage. My sister has sensitive skin and has had no problem using these.

I usually buy 'natural' shower products online as they are quite difficult to find on my local high street so I'm really pleased to have discovered these and will be re-buying again!!

Coping with depression


Depression is a difficult thing to talk about and I admit its not exactly the first thing I tell someone about myself. I think this is the third time I've started writing this post and I've always chickened out of publishing as I find it hard to put into words. Depression is much more than just feeling down. I compare it to a very dark cloud hanging over your head and your shoulders. It weighs you down and you can't shake it off.

To give you a bit of a backstory, I started with panic attacks when I was 18 (I'm now almost 29). When I had a panic attack, I felt like I was going to pass out. I couldn't breathe properly, I felt sick and my heart was racing. I went to the doctor and got prescribed beta blockers which helped but I still felt anxious and constantly looking for the exit wherever I went so I could run outside if I felt panicky.

I stayed on the medication for a while but I got side effects. My body felt so heavy like lead all the time and I felt drained. I started Uni but eventually withdrew because of the anxiety.
I eventually became very withdrawn and wouldn't leave the house unless I absolutely had to. I felt low, teary, my appetite and sleeping patterns were all over the place. I just felt at rock bottom and really lonely. I didn't understand what was happening and to be honest I felt slightly ashamed that I felt so low when I had no real reason too - I have a lovely family and friends and people go through so much worse shit than I could ever understand. 

I went to the doctors and was diagnosed with depression. I got prescribed anti-depressants (citalopram- which I still take). I was offered the chance to talk with someone but I declined as its not something I felt comfortable with at the time.
 Initially, I had one or two side effects from the medication. I felt nauseous and at times felt almost like a zombie - a 'numb' feeling is how I would describe it.  Nevertheless, I carried on with the medication and started feeling better within a few months.

I had another period about two years ago where I started feeling really down again and my dosage of medication was increased.
I started feeling calmer and 'alive' again.

I wanted to write this post, not only as a reminder to myself but to show that life can get better.

Its really only in the last few months that I've really started feeling like I used to. (I'm not going to say normal as I dislike that word - who knows what exactly 'normal' is anyway).

In the last two years my nephew was born and my grandad passed away. It made me sit up and realise how precious life is. Yes, I still have bad days, I'm still on medication but depression is a mountain I'm conquering (sounds cheesy I know).

Life is so short. I dont want to sit back and let it pass me by and think about all the things I could have done.

I want to start living life to the full.

No matter how bad things seem ~ life does get better!

Caring for ombre hair!

A while ago I ombreyed my hair with the Loreal Wild Ombre Hair Kit. You can read that post here.
Luckily my hair wasn't in too bad condition before I lightened it but since then its been on the dryer side so I picked up a few products to help.

Twice a week I use the Percy and Reed Totally TLC Hydrating Mask. I like to leave it on for 15 minutes for intense conditioning. The Mask contains coconut oil although it doesn't smell coconutty,just a pleasant clean scent. I only use this on the ends of my hair as I do with other products as I my roots are on the oily side and it leaves my hair feeling soft and smooth.

Before I blow dry my hair, I use Redken Extreme Anti-Snap. I've mentioned this product before but I really love it!
Anti-snap is a leave in treatment that provides heat protection and helps prevent breakage and split ends. It smells divine and I really notice a difference when I use it. My hair feels and looks healthier and is so much easier to brush as it doesn't get knotty. Not super cheap but well worth the price!

After drying, I use a pea sized amount of Healthy Sexy Hair Soy Renewal Treatment. My hairdresser uses this and its amazing. It contains argan oil and is very light on the hair. it transforms my hair into glossy locks and smells so good. I got mine from Amazon for £8.99 which is much cheaper than the hairdressers!

Zoe x

Zoya Electra

oooh bar glitter. it kinda looks like tinsel, which is why I had to buy it. Zoya electra is from the Ornate Holiday collection which features holographic polishes and yep electra is holographic too. Its quite difficult to capture how pretty it is on camera but I gave it a go.

It looks nicer layered but I still think its pretty awesome.

Yankee Wax Tarts for Christmas/Winter

I'm not really a huge candle fan!I'm so clumsy, I'm always scared of knocking one over and burning the house down!

However, I love the look of Yankee Candles Wax Tarts and decided to buy a few from the winter/xmas range.

Christmas Eve - Traditional Christmas scents of a warm hearth, sugared plums
and candied fruits

Christmas cookie - Buttery rich, vanilla scented holiday sugar cookies

Christmas Rose - Holiday memories bloom in the authentic perfume of delicate rose petals with a hint of pine

These smell amazing, in particular sugar cookie which is yummy!

Wax tarts have an 8 hour burn time and can be used in one go/broke up and placed in the top of a burner (I use an oil burner) and an unscented tea light is placed below allowing the tart to melt and the aroma to fill the room.

I used this ebay seller to buy mine!!

What are your favourite yankee candle scents?

Zoe xx

Haus of Gloi

Just in case you missed my last post and you're wondering who the hell is this on my feed?, I've had a name change and 'the beauty shelf' is now Sweet Electric. 
I've been a little MIA recently, real life has been taking over and I've been a bit occupied with filling in my application for a postgrad course in starting in January. I clicked submit this afternoon so now the nervous wait starts ahhh...
Anyway onto my first Haus of Gloi order. Haus of Gloi are an indie company based in the US. I made an order online and they arrived after a week, which is pretty quick to the UK.

I bought IMP soap and Twice is Nice bubbling scrub.
All Haus of Gloi's products are handmade and cruelty free. IMP comprises passion fruit, apricot, grapefruit juice and wet mimosa blooms. Its a very subtle fragrance, not overly fruity and not too feminine either. The lather is insane, leaving the skin feeling really soft.
Twice is Nice is comprises the scent of sugar cookie, coconut and almond. Its very sweet and smells good enough to eat. The texture is unlike anything I've used before. Bubbling Scrub is a light exfoliating wash comprising sugar and shea butter. The texture looks dry in the pot but its surprisingly quite soft to touch. I don't find the scrub as lathering as the soap but its a nice light scrub and left my skin feeling really smooth.

I paid around £11 for the two including shipping and would definitely recommend having a look on their website here
. snow wolf whipped soap is next on my list to buy - best name for a soap ever!!

Zoe xoxo

Time for change!

 Hello! Just a brief post to say that after a little bit of thought, I've decided to change my blog name.
When I signed up to blogger, The Beauty Shelf was pretty much the first name I chose that was available and not that theres anything wrong with it, but its not particularly 'me' and I kinda feel that the 'beauty' part boxes me in as to what I write about.
So my new blog name is going to be 'sweet electric' - just something I randomly thought of thats a bit different!
I'm still going to be blogging about beauty, hopefully alongside more personal posts. I'll be also changing my email address and twitter name - bit of a pallava!

I hope you stick with me and I'll be back to announce the MAC giveaway winner shortly!

Zoe xx