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Nail Polish/Care

Nail Polish/Care

Butter London Backstage Basics

A girl can never have too many nail polishes! Butter London are amongst my favourites. Their shades stand out a little more for me than other brands and the packaging is gorgeous.

A sample of their Backstage Basics kit arrived recently and I have been thoroughly enjoying it :)


Each kit comes with the basics and your choice of coloured nail polish.

  • Powder Room Acetone Free Lacquer Remover
  • Hardwear PD Quick Topcoat
  • Nail Foundation Flawless Basecoat
  • Lacquer of your choice
  • Nail File

The basics included…

The coloured lacquer in my kit was Primrose Hill Picnic, a bright, cheery pink. Very Amy.

I should point out that all their nail polishes are free from Formaldehyde, Toluene and Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP).

Application wise this goes on like a dream. It’s creamy and smooth without the mess. The dry time is pretty decent too. I often find myself reaching for a Butter polish when I’m in a hurry because I can rely on the dry time. I also have a gorgeous sample of the matching Lippy Butter – post coming tomorrow!


  • Everything you need under one roof
  • Would make an amazing present
  • You save a significant amount by buying the kit instead of purchasing the products separately


  • I can’t think of any. Once you’re willing to part with the cash that is

Would I repurchase?

I can’t imagine I’m going to run out of base or topcoat soon but I would absolutely buy this kit for friends and family. As soon as I saw it I found myslef wondering who’s birthday is coming up next and what Butter Lacquer I would choose to add to their kit.

Repurchase: Yes, I probably won’t finish the products in this set, but these would make a wonderful Mother’s Day gift.

The kit costs €51, which is fair enough when you consider the price of these these polishes on their own. Each polish retails at €15 with the base and top coats retailing over €20! If you see the dollar price online you may have a heart attack – I saw $25 mentioned but upon further investigation I learned that this is without the lacquer. It would make a gorgeous gift or a great way to get your nail basics. You can find them online here , from Avoca or Fran and Jane stores.

Any thoughts on Butter London?

Drugstore Make-up, Lips, Make-up, Mascara, MaxFactor, Nail Polish/Care

Mmmm! MaxFactor Goodies

Max Factor is a brand have dipped into on occasion but have limited experience with. I love their mascaras – 2000 Calorie was a favourite of mine for a long time. I also once had a brief fling with one of their foundations – I remember recording a foundation tutorial with it way back when.

I am happy to be able to explore the bounties of this brand a little more.

24 from False Lash Effect Mascara – This mascara has a built-in primer that wraps lashes. Max Factor is a sister company of the US brand Covergirl – hence the latters infamous Lashblast being the same as the formers False Lash Effect Mascara. I have always been a fan od Max Factors mascara and I’m sure this one will be no different!

I have two of Revlons Flipstick Colour Effects Lipsticks – Bloomy Pink and Salsa Red. They are lip duos. The colours can be worn alone, blended together or used on different parts of the lips – to highlight the plumpness for example. (€11.99) “An innovative double-ended lipstick you mix, match and personalise your own lip colour”.


I have never tried Max Factors nail polishes either so I shall have some fun swatching these.

Right, I’m off to start swatching and testing!

Thoughts on Max Factor??

Nail Polish/Care, Reviews

YSL La Laque Couture Nail Polishes – Swatches & Review

I am in love with YSL La Laque Couture Nail Polishes. Love I tell you! Thought it was time for some swatches and a review of their fabulousness (yes, I make up words now).



N°4 Corail Colisée A bright coral. Sounds like so many others but its beauty is unparalleled in my books

N°29 Doré Orfèvre A unique, true gold

N°15 Violet Baroque Deep, rich, juicy violet. This oozes class.

N°22 Beige Léger Deemed this seasons ‘it’ shade by YSL.


N°4 Corail Colisée



N°22 Beige Léger



N°15 Violet Baroque



N°29 Doré Orfèvre

My thoughts

Colour: Whenever a nail polish comes with a hefty price tag I expect a bit of magic. Lately I have been disappointed by a few high end offerings – Estee Lauder Pure Color being one of them. Well, with these beauties there was no disappointment. These shades are intense and vivd. I couldn’t love them more. In fact I rooted through my collection to look for dupes and couldn’t find any that lived up to the quality and vividness of colours. When I applied Corail Colisée I spent the entire day looking at my nails. I’m a fan of coral shades anyway and find they work well with my skin tone but this just plain outstanding.

Application: Vividness aside, the application of these polishes are a dream! The brush is wide, tapered and smooth. It worked perfectly with the shape of my nail bed. I find that I can vary the pressure of the brush and get one whole nail coated in one swipe. The polishes I tried are creamy and smooth and were foolproof to apply. I would go as far as to say that I had the easiest application I can remember.

Dry-time: Rapid. I managed three coats in a few minutes. I didn’t need more than two coats for any of the above. In fact, the coverage was great after one coat. I just needed two for perfect coverage.

Finish: Creamy with a high shine (less of a shine with the gold because of the finish)

Staying Power: The polish and the shine last. I didn’t need to apply a top coat. They are also enriched with Chilean Rose bush and extract of Corallina that is source of Calcium, the formula fortifies and protects nails.

Packaging: Again, pure luxury

Price: Expensive at €24. These nail polishes are a splurge but from the few I’ve tested the quality is outstanding. It would be a special sort of nail purchase. After all, luxury comes at a price (although in my experience price definitely doesn’t always mean luxury!)

Wow, that was bit of a rant. If I was to root for any negatives I would say that the gold shade suits my skintone least. But I have big plans for this one during tan season! I also picked up a bottle for a friends birthday – it would suit her tanned skin perfectly.

If I could grade these they would received a big fat A+


Nail Polish/Care

Sally Hansen’s new Spring Shades

I liked the look of Sally Hansen’s new lady like shades at first glance. Sure, they’re like other polishes I have but that just means I’ll use them!

Soft and creamy is the order of the day…

  • Nude Now – A subtle peachy, pink hue.
  • Greige Gardens – A grey jelly creme with a purple tint. Love!!!

And now for some swatches (the worst swatches ever! My hands are so dry this time of year)…

Greige Gardens (natural light)

Nude Now

I like both but I think the grey is more me. It’s the sort of shade you can apply and wear whatever and go wherever you want without thinking twice until it starts to wear. Speaking of wearing, I find Sally Hansen Salon Manicure polishes last very well. I had the grey shade on for 4-5 days before it showed any signs of wearing. That’s a miracle for me.

For those you unfamiliar with their Complete Salon Manicure range, they’re basically designed to be an entire manicure in one bottle  – no need for bases or top coats. That’s a bit of a tall order but they do last well. They also apply like a dream. The brush is tapered and flat – my favourite brush type by far.

They cost €8.95 and are available in pharmacies, department stores and grocery stores.

Love them! Any nail polish recommendations for me?

Drugstore Make-up, Isa Dora, Make-up

Isa Dora Spring Make-up..

You have probably heard me yapping about my love for Isa Dora cosmetics when I was a teenager. Last year I made a Product Rave video about their blush (posted below). Well now they have a few products lined up for Spring and I have been dabbling. Oh how Amy likes to dabble.

The collection is called Pearls of Passion


Wonder Nail Polish (€7.95)


Eye Shadow Quartet ‘Rainbow Pearls’ €13.50


Glow Stick Blusher – Rose Petal (€15.50)

Twist-up Metallic Eye Pencil (€10.95)

This bracelet comes free with any 2 purchases…

Some swatches…


Here is my Porduct Rave video on the Glowstick – I also apply it on camera to show you what it looks like.


And a swatch on my arm for shade reference – one needs to be thorough :) …

My thoughts so far:

  • Love the nail polish. At first glance I thought it was just another lavender shade but when I saw the reflects I was thrilled. It looks absolutely beautiful on (I’ll swatch it later and post in the morning). If a garden fairy were to choose a nail polish this would be for her.
  • The bracelet is completely wearable. In fact, I have worn it twice this week. It’s good quality – not what you expect for a freebie.
  • The blush… well, the video speaks for itself. I also included it my Spring favourites video before I knew they were re-promoting it.
  • The eyeshadow palette isn’t like the ones I used to collect as a teen. This palette in particular is very shimmery. If you’re into shimmer than you might like. I would also recommend an eye base to avoid fallout. I like the goldy shade the most. I applied it over a paint-pot and it looks beautiful on blue eyes.


Isa Dora is available in pharmacies around Ireland. (My local Unicare stocks the full range).

Any thoughts on Isa Dora?

* I have been updating my Bump & Baby Blog daily if you are bored :)

Nail Polish/Care

Issues with Blue Nails!

I once hated blue nail polish with a passion. Blue is one of my favourite colours and yet I couldn’t bring myself to wear it on my nails. For some reason it felt unnatural, like a blue Smartie! It also reminded me of being fourteen and those memories really don’t need to be conjured – Think mini disco’s wearing a skin tight dress inspired by Posh spice – only to realise many years on that I looked rather skankish rather than classy. Let’s not even think about the fake tan!).

I’ve had a change of heart and now can’t get enough. I picked this Collection 2000 one for €3.50 in Boots. It’s in the shade Blue Hawaii. I thought it looked a little garish to be honest but was attracted to its brightness. After application I decided I quite like it.

(Ignore the state of my cuticles! Manicure desperately needed this evening)…


I like Collection 2000 polishes in general. They’re cheap, come in a great shade range and add new shades regularly. That being said, I find the finish a little hit and miss. It depends on the shade but most of the polishes I have bought are well loved (on my third bottle of Button Moon). They’re quite easy to apply although I would prefer if the brush was tappered or a little smaller. Lasting power on this shade was ok, nothing to write home about though. It started to wear after 3 days on my nails and chipped on the fourth. I should point out however that I was lazy and skipped the top coat.

Anyone else like blue nails at the moment? Any recommendations?

Drugstore Make-up, Favourites, Make-up, Nail Polish/Care, Urban Decay, YouTube Videos

Video – Top Products for Spring!

I  love Spring! I love the return of brighter evenings, pretty colours. It always inspire me to change my make-up. I decided to make a video on my top products for Spring. Some are old favourites and others are new.

Products I mentioned:

Revlon Lip Butter Cotton Candy
Urban Decay Super Saturated High Gloss Lip Colour
Maybelline Dream Mouse Blush – Peach Satin
Collection 2000 Blushalicious
Urban Decay Naked Palette 2
Sigma Cleansing Tool
Olay Total Effects Wake Up Wonder 7-in-1
Urban Decay De-slick
Leighton Denny Baby Doll
Collection 2000 Button Moon
Benefit Eye Bright
St Tropez Rose Illuminator
Revlon Pink Chiffon & Lilac Pastel

Thanks for watching!

Isa Dora, Make-up, Mascara

Product of the month: Isa Dora Big Bold Mascara

I have been using Isa Dora’s new mascara Big Bold for the past 3 weeks. I won’t beat around the bush – it’s great.

What I liked most:

  • The volume – huge lashes! It’s also buildable.
  • Quickness – One coat and out the door. Yes, really. No waiting for layers to dry etc.
  • The softness of my lashes – I loathe the feeling of anything plasticy. This mascara left my lashes touchable
  • No smudging! Woo hoo!
  • The brush –   lifts at the roots; I have tried a few mascaras lately that add volume but leave the root flat and uncoated. The brush is  made up of long and short brushes which coats your lashes fast and evenly.

  • Fragrance free and opthalmologically tested for those of us with annoyingly sensitive eyes.
  • The price – €8.95 initially, to celebrate its launch. The normal RRP of €14.95 is fairly decent for this product though.
  • Widely available in chemists in Ireland

For this photo I applies only one coat. I tried and tried to get a photo that would show how the mascara at its best but I didn’t succeed.


It reminds me a little of Dior Show. I have recently picked up Make Up For Ever Smokey Lash and although they are completely different types of mascaras, I like both equally. Big Bold is more akin to a high-end product than a drugstore one.

I would definitely repurchase!

What’s your favourite mascara at the moment?

Nail Polish/Care

A little stocking filler from IsaDora…

I got my hands on a lovely set from IsaDora the other day. It would make a great little stocking filler. It’s the Grafitti Nails Holiday Gift Pack.


The set comes with:

  • Graffiti Nail Top – Black Tag 801
  • Wonder Nail Wide Brush – Gold Sparkles 652
  • Wonder Nail Base/Top Coat – 600 Clear
  • Animal Print Purse

For anyone who is new to Graffiti nails, it’s pretty easy.

1. Apply Wonder Nail in Gold Sparkles to the nail.

2. Apply Black Tag over the top and wait 30 seconds.

3. Apply Wonder Nail Base/Top coat which gives it shine and longevity.

I have a step-by-step tutorial here, using different shades but you’ll get an idea how it looks and how to apply.

I’ll be back with more stocking fillers and gift ideas!

China Glaze, Hauls, Nail Polish/Care

A spot of Nail Polish Shopping….

Whenever I have a bad day I feel the urge to buy nail polish. Don’t ask why, I don’t , I just buy. Luckily I don’t often have a bad day but when I do I head to my favourite ebay store and peruse nail polishes. Then I check swatches online and create a shortlist. I love the entire, ridiculous process.

Last week I went for China Glaze Purple Panic and Pink Voltage. I usually but a few more but I managed to reign myself in :)

I think the neoness of the colours hints at the sort of mood I was in! Not traditional Winter shades but November is so dark and dreary that I could do with a little brightness. Is it just me?


China Glaze Purple Panic


China Glaze Pink Voltage


I found BeautyZone2007 through Lollipop26 who often buys nail polishes from them. I have never had any problems – she offer combined shipping, nail polishes are much cheaper than here in Ireland, she has a huge range and I have never had any customs charges (I never order more than 6 at a time, usually four). Each bottle costs €2.34 and postage came to €5. Not bad for less than a tenner! It’s also a good way to buy shades that are from old collections.

I don’t have any neon shades in my collection so I look forward to trying these. Speaking of my collection, I feel like a nail polish clear out is in order. I have  my favourites but there are so many more that have been used once or twice and flung in the box.

Blog sale?