Make-up Masterclass – Mascara

Make-up Masterclass – Mascara

Mascara was created to give us the illusion of longer, thicker and more voluminous lashes. Nowadays, mascaras have been revolutionised. Things now aren’t so simple as choosing between whether you want to add length or volume to your lashes; you now have the option to waterproof, curl and even dye your lashes with mascara.

With so many options to choose from on the mascara market, we’re here to give you a make-up master class in this essential everyday make-up tool. Let’s explore the benefits of having a good quality mascara in your make-up bag.


There are lots of types of mascara that will have you questioning which one you should actually pick. Luckily for you, we’ve taken some of the pressure off and have selected 4 different mascara products that can all transform your lashes in different ways.


Waterproof mascara was introduced around 2005 and was seen as the first step in a new direction for this timeless make-up product. At first, waterproof mascaras were regarded as being very difficult to take off after a long day, mainly due to their long lasting power. Nowadays, new formulas have been developed to still maintain longevity but also to coat your lashes in a nourishing formula that protects and nourishes your eyelashes while still maintaining their colour.

L'Oreal Lash Architect

First up is L’Oreal’s Lash Architect Carbon Gloss Waterproof Mascara. Described as the perfect weapon to get you through the day, this waterproof mascara guarantees to protect you against everything from bad weather to emotional occasions. This long lasting and ultra pigmented mascara will last throughout your day so there’s no worry of a touch up.


If you’re already blessed with naturally long lashes, then volume mascara is the perfect option for you when it comes to your eyes. Volume mascaras are designed to add instant depth to your lashes and really build glamorous and defined eyes.

Maybelline Colossal Volum Express Mascara

Maybelline’s Colossal Volum Express WP Mascara applies smoothly and doesn’t clump your lashes. This affordable mascara loads your lashes with up to 7x more volume. It also contains a collagen enriched formula which allows the product to focus on each individual lash, while its oversized brush gives gorgeous volume.


Eyelash curlers can be great for beginning the process for lengthening your lashes but mascara is the ultimate tool for making those lashes grow rapidly in the space of 10 minutes! But instead of just focusing on making your lashes look like they’re longer, some mascara products can actually work to make this happen over time.


Astor’s Stimulong Lengthening Mascara coats your lashes in a rich formula which not only changes their appearance but also bathes them in a bio active complex. What this means is that the mascara actually helps to condition and smooth the lashes, protecting them from future damage. In the long term this helps to promote and stimulate lash growth.


You can add length, volume and drama to your lashes but sometimes it can be tricky to avoid the spider eye look. Thick mascara formulations can clump your lashes together and dry them out, so it may be time to start thinking about separating mascaras.

NYC High Definition

If you like to look wide eyed and awake in the morning (don’t we all?) then you should look at separating mascaras, like the NYC High Definition Separating Mascara. This is described as the ultimate mascara in lash definition. Its thin and long brush helps to create perfect lash separation, creating that wide eyed look that we all love to achieve. It lifts, strengthens and separates the lashes, giving you perfect lashes throughout your day.

What’s your favourite type of mascara to use? Let us know by leaving a comment below!

The Perfect Look for Christmas Day

The Perfect Look for Christmas Day

I don’t know about you but I tend to stress about my Christmas Day ‘look’. It’s the one day of the year when I feel I need to look my prettiest! My first steps are to pick my Christmas Day outfit and then things quickly move to imagining what my Christmas ‘face’ will look like.

There are so many Christmas look tutorials out there on the world wide web that we’re flooded with ideas of what make-up look to go for. We could opt for the classic red lip (Santa’s favourite colour, of course!), the netural smokey eye or we could glimmer up and go all out with a glitter storm. Personally, I’m going to opt for the easy-to-wear brown smokey eye with a burnt red lip ‘ something classic, sophisticated and Christmas inspired.

So what products am I going to need to achieve this dream look? Keep reading to find out!

Revlon Foundation

Your Make-up Base

My foundation base is really important to me and especially around Christmas, you want to find a foundation product that’s going to have champion staying-power. With families to visit, presents to unwrap and a mound of food to eat, the last thing you want to be doing is touching up your make-up. For foundation, we recommend the Revlon ColorStay Aqua Mineral Foundation. The great thing about this foundation is that it comes with its own brush applicator that attaches to the product, meaning you won’t have to cart around separate beauty tools for your application needs. This mineral foundation contains lightweight minerals that won’t clog your pores and cause unwanted blemishes.

Esprit Eyeshadow

It’s All in the Eyes

I’m opting for a warm, smoky eye on Christmas day. I’ve decided to opt for brown shades as opposed to the classic black and gray tones of the smoky eye look. I don’t want my eyes to look too made up, instead, I’d prefer them to look warm and wearable! This Esprit Quad Eyeshadow Palette in the shade ‘Sunset Brown’ contains 4 very wearable colours that are versatile enough to allow you to transition your look from day to night. Taking the neutral skin coloured shade, I’m going to sweep this across my lid before taking the darker brown shade and blending it into the crease. For a little more added depth, I’m also going to take this colour underneath the eye to help blend the look in all together.

NYC Eyeliner

To smoke my eyes up just that little bit more, I’m going to use NYC’s Kohl Eyeliner Pencil Dueo in the shade 881. This pencil contains two shades which is great if you want to change your make-up look on the go. I’m going to use the dark brown shade along my water line. Brown eyeliner shades are a great alternative to black and really compliment all eye colours.

Maybelline Blush

Blushing Beauty

As I’ve focused a lot on my eyes for this look, I’m going to use a subtle shade of pink on my cheeks. Maybelline’s Expert Wear Blush in the shade ‘Precious Pink’ is a beautiful tone of pink that’s going to add a lot of warmth to the face. It isn’t too striking so thankfully it won’t detract from the eye make-up look.

Maybelline Mascara

Luscious Lashes

Keeping with the brown theme, I’m going to use Maybelline’s Define a Lash Volume Mascara. This warm tone of brown will really help to lift the lashes and open up your eyes. This shade will intensely darken your lashes so that they’re very noticeable without going over the top. This mascara features a long and slim line brush which is great for defining every lash.

Rimmel Apocalips

When In Doubt – Pout!

To finish this Christmas special look, I’m opting for Rimmel Apocalips Lip Lacquer in the shade ‘Bang Bang’. This is an intensely deep red lacquer which leaves the lips with an impeccable shine. Super glossy and hydrating, this Rimmel lip product really helps to create the ultimate red lip. Paired with a brown smoky eye, this lipstick really adds that perfect finishing touch to your Christmas make-up look.

Do you like to wear make-up on Christmas day? If so, what’s your make-up plan for Christmas day? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

The Christmas Number One

The Christmas Number One

You know how popstars battle for the coveted Christmas Number One spot in the charts? Well if you didn’t already know, fragrances do that too. Yes, really! Or at least they do here at Fragrance Direct. And like the UK charts, we want our lovely Fragrance Direct customers to vote for their favourite fragrance!

We’ve narrowed it down to four fragrances, two for the ladies and two for the gentlemen. We’ve taken into account our biggest releases of 2013, our best sellers and those scents that people have just been raving about to bring you the ultimate Fragrance Direct chart list! So which one is going to make it to the coveted number one spot?

Marc Jacobs Honey

Marc Jacobs

When we first heard about Marc Jacobs Honey back in the summer, we didn’t expect anything less than brilliant and we weren’t left disappointed. Marc Jacobs had mastered it again by combing a fun and unique bottle with a carefree and light fragrance inside. This sweet and warm scent is represented by an adorable polka dot bottle, complete with miniature bee designs. Created by the same perfumer who was responsible for Dot (and what a scent that still is today), Honey is a vibrant and likeable fragrance which isn’t too overpowering. It won’t drown you in essence; it will elegantly bathe your skin in a likeable, everyday scent.


Paco Rabanne

Not a surprising contender this Christmas, Paco Rabanne Invictus has confidently stridden into the fragrance game this year. Designed with champions in mind, Invictus has been nothing short of impressive. The stylish trophy design hit a chord with its male audience and transformed it into a fragrance that men would be proud to have in their collection. A successor to 1 Million, Invictus is fresh and aquatic with notes of woods and amber. It’s a highly wearable fragrance for men and one that has been top of their wish lists this Christmas!

Our Moment

One Direction

Love them or hate them, One Direction certainly aren’t stepping off the scene anytime soon, so naturally, they released their first signature fragrance entitled Our Moment. Like their popular singles, Our Moment has become one of the best selling perfumes of 2013. Inspired by their fans, One Direction created an effortlessly feminine fragrance which contains notes of raspberry, fresh fruit and seasonal flowers, creating a warm, sweet and wearable scent for women. This has definitely been a fragrance that has been popular with the younger generation.

CK One

Calvin Klein

Calvin Klein CK One is an oldie but a goodie. A classic, unisex fragrance, it would be impossible not to include this scent on the chart list. Sleek and stylish, CK One is an absolute classic. It’s a wearable, everyday fragrance which boasts notes of Jasmine, Rose and Lily Of The Valley. CK One is intensely fresh and inviting and has been a pillar of fragrances since the 90s. We thought it was only fair to allow CK One to have a major comeback and be in with the chance to swoop the number one spot.

Which one would you pick to get to number one in the Fragrance Chart? Let us know by leaving a comment below!

Party Look Debates

Party Look Debates

Parties go hand in hand with Christmas. The excitement of receiving presents, giving presents, parties and special occasions all blend in together to create a season filled with, well, joy, to be precise! For me, I enjoy the fun of being able to shop around for my must-have party dress and all my beauty essentials that are going to leave me feeling glammed and ready for action.

One thing I wanted to explore this holiday season are a few age old debates about make-up products that we come to depend on year by year. Do we really need all the make-up products we think we do? Or can we sacrifice one item in place of another?

Eyeshadow vs Eyeliner

Eyeshadow is a staple product that has always had a proud place in our make-up bag. You can cater your eyeshadow shade to your outfit and create so many different looks. Eyeshadow is such a versatile product that can double up as an eyeliner and even a brow shadow as well. So when we put it up against our trusty eyeliner pen or pencil, which one could we go without?

Glo Minerals

Glo Mineral’s Smokey Eye Kit contains four classic shades that you can mix and match to create the ultimate smokey eye. The kit also includes an instruction guide, just in case you need to brush up on your smokey eye skills. The nice thing about this Glo Minerals set is that you can double up any of the darker shades as your eyeliner if you use an angled eyeliner brush. This set will be a fail safe tool for all your Christmas and New Year parties.

w7 eyeliner

But just as it may seem this kit will swoop the prize for your most beloved eye make-up product, take a look at W7’s Sparkle Stix Eye Liner Pencil. Available in a striking gold shade, this eye liner is perfect for adding a touch of Christmas glamour and sparkle to your eye make-up look. You can apply this eye liner along your water line or you can add a pop of colour to the inner corner of the eye.

So, who do you think has won this round?

False Lashes vs Natural

Elongated, voluminous lashes are every girl’s best friend. Our eyes look so much more awake as soon as curl and apply product to our lashes. Fake lashes are a great way of adding even more glamour to your eyes. But do we need them? Do you find them difficult to apply? Which one will you be setting aside this festive season?

Individual lashes

Royal’s Individual Lashes are a great way of taking control of your lashes. Unlike most lashes, you can have full control of how much you want to build them up. These individual lashes are great for adding length to the outer corner of the eyes, creating the ultimate 60s look. The pack comes with a small pair of tweezers and eye glue so that you have everything you need to apply the lashes quickly and efficiently.

Rimmel Glam Eyes Mascara

But what if you don’t have the time to spend on applying fake eyelashes? Many beauty gurus will argue that a good mascara product can create the same effect as falsies. Rimmel’s Glam Eyes Lash Flirt Mascara is the must-have party mascara. The wand is long and thin which makes it perfect for lengthening those hard-to-reach places such as the inner and outer corners of the eye.

Lip Gloss vs Lipstick

Pairing lipstick and lip gloss has always felt like such a natural routine of make-up. Lipstick creates the perfect base while lipgloss can enhance and even change a lipstick shade entirely. Could we possibly hope to give one up over another?

Astor Lipstick

Astor Soft Sensation Lipstick is available in 10 wearable shades. The formulation is creamy and moisturising with a semi-matte finish. It is also enriched with vitamins so that your lips don’t dry out after application. The colour needs little to no topping up throughout the day so that you can enjoy a long lasting and noticeable colour.

L'Oreal Lipgloss

But can we really resist a little bit of shine? L’Oreal’s Glam Shine Lip Gloss helps to create the appearance of fuller looking lips, mainly due to the glam shine crystals which are featured in the lip gloss formulation. The creamy consistency of this lip gloss offers ultimate coverage and will look great when it’s paired with your favourite lipstick. Which one will you possibly pick?

Party Look Bargains

Party Look Bargains

You’ve found the outfit you want to wear to your long list of Christmas parties and you’ve blown the last of your party look budget on those shoes that you had to have, but, you’ve forgotten about one important thing ‘ the make-up!

The good thing is, we’re going to help take some of the pressure off with our party look make-up bargains that will allow you to splurge on some make-up essentials without feeling too guilty. We’ve put together a list of party look bargains that will leave you feeling calm and confident this holiday season.

Maybelline 24Hr

Maybelline Superstay 24HR Lip Colour

Maybelline Superstay 24HR Lip Colour stretches the limits by promising up to 24 hours of lip colour that will see you through the night and straight through to the next day. Created in the style of a lip gloss, this Maybelline Lip Colour guarantees no fading, transferring, smudging or drying so you can enjoy your favourite shade for longer. You have 12 shades to choose from which range from deep ambers to timeless pinks, so that you can find a lip colour for an array of occasions.

Creative Colours Nail Polish

Creative Colours 8 Pack Nail Polish Set

This Creative Colours 8 Pack Nail Polish Set allows you to mix and match a wealth of shades so that you can cater your colour to your chosen outfit. These 8 mini polishes feature classic shades of reds, blues, pinks and subtle hues which will carry you through from season to season, so when Christmas has passed, you can start thinking about your spring nails.

Yardley Powder

Yardley Perfect Finish Pressed Powder

They don’t call it the most wonderful time of the year for nothing! Christmas parties are fast and few between, so you’re going to want a powder that will last you through the evening. Yardley’s Perfect Finish Pressed Powder is great for controlling shine and oil, without causing your make-up to look cakey. Available in a range of shades which are designed to suit a multitude of skin tones, Yardley’s Perfect Finish Pressed Powder is an essential for your make-up bag. Our top tip for applying this product is to use a large, fluffy powder brush so that you can dispense the product evenly.

Astor Eyeshadow Duo

Astor Eye Pure Colour Eyeshadow Duo

Create the perfect smokey eye with Astor’s Eye Pure Colour Eyeshadow Duo. This handy little duo is great for storing in your night out bag and features colours which effortlessly complement each other. Shades of purple, blue, gray and black are available to choose from so that you can pick your perfect base colour and then use the accompanying shade to fill in your eyelid crease, creating a subtle smokey eye.

W7 bronzer

W7 Honolulu Bronzing Powder

This cute little box of colour houses W7’s Honolulu Bronzing Powder ‘ the perfect product to have when you want to add a touch of natural colour to your party look. Complete with a small contouring brush, this product is great for defining your cheeks bones while adding an overall natural glow to the face. A good tip for when applying bronzer is try not to start off with too much product. Sweep the brush a long the bronzer and take most of the product off on the back of your hand. This means that when you apply it, you can build the colour up at a steady pace.

Sunkissed Eyeshadow

Sunkissed 12 Shade Eyeshadow Compact

12 eye shadow shades within one compact is always going to be a great product when you’re preparing for a night out. This Sunkissed Eyeshadow Compact contains a range of wearable shades that can help you transition from a day to night look. Creamy ivory, golden, bronze and brown shades all feature as part of this affordable compact so that you can cater your eye look to your occasion.