Friday, 17 January 2014

Fave 5 MUA products

As if it wasn't bad enough to be a beauty junkie, I'm probably also a shopaholic (as you can tell I still haven't quite accepted or embraced my condition) which is a lethal combination for any bank balance and very difficult at this time of year when a lot of us are on a spending ban, to recover from the Christmas excesses. Fortunately there are makeup brands on the high street that seem to cater to people with my affliction and one of them is MUA (Makeup Academy). MUA's philosophy is that makeup shouldn't cost a fortune and that to get affordable products you shouldn't have to compromise on quality - no arguments here! I first discovered MUA a few years ago and I'm very pleased to see that since then the range of product has grown so much, and includes more or less everything that you could possibly want, all for under £5. I've certainly made the most of the purse friendly prices and tried quite a few things from the ever expanding range so today I'll show you my fave 5 MUA products starting with the famous Undressed palettes.
 
The MUA Undressed eyeshadow palette (£4) - the first MUA product I ever bought, is famous for being considered a dupe for Urban Decay's Naked palette. It combines twelve nude, neutral shimmering and matte eye shadows and it's a great starter kit for creating both everyday natural, and smokey smouldering eye looks which I'll try to describe since they don't have any color names:

Shade 1 - Matte vanilla, Shade 2 - Shimmering wheat, Shade 3 - Matte tan, Shade 4 - Shimmering dark ecru, Shade 5 - Matte camel, Shade 6 - Shimmering copper, Shade 7 - Shimmering russet, Shade 8 - Shimmering dark chocolate, Shade 9 - Shimmering mahogany, Shade 10 - Shimmering chestnut, Shade 11 - Shimmering charcoal, Shade 12 - Shimmering blue grey

All of the shimmering eye shadows have great, strong pigmentation and they are easy to work with to build up color with no fallout (I've only noticed that for Shade 11), and they wear well throughout the day - on me they last for about 5 hrs before they start to fade. In general I find it difficult to get affordable good matte eyeshadows on the high street, and while these are OK, the pigmentation isn't strong enough for me and they start to fade after only a few hrs. That doesn't mean that I like the palette any less, and because of the compact format it's easy to take it with you and retouch whenever needed. I love to combine shade 4 and 6, or 7 and 9 for variations on everyday looks, and in the evening 8, 10 and 12 make a dramatic smokey eye - all in all, it's a great buy!
From left to right:
Top row - Shade 1, Shade 2, Shade 3, Shade 4, Shade 5, Shade 6
Bottom row - Shade 7, Shade 8, Shade 9, Shade 10, Shade 11, Shade 12 

The other eye shadow palette is Undress Me Too (£4), again this is considered a dupe (for Urban Decay's Naked 2) and the eye shadows are lovely warm and golden in a mix of matte and shimmering textures, perfect for a paired down subtle eye with a statement lip: 

Naked - Matte blonde, Devotion - Shimmering bronze, Shy - Matte buff, Fiery - Shimmering golden brown, Lavish - Matte fallow, Dreamy - Shimmering sepia, Tranquil - Shimmering russet, Exposed - Shimmering taupe, Reveal - Shimmering ecru, Wink - Shimmering cinnamon, Obsessed - Shimmering coffee, Corrupt - Matte gunmetal

We have the same situation with pigmentation in this palette as with Undressed - all the stronger colors are excellent and gorgeous to work with, and I'd even say that the Undress Me Too shades last longer on me than the Undressed ones do, however the matte ones are weaker, but to have 10 excellent shades out of 12 certainly isn't bad. In all honesty it took me a little while to start appreciating this palette properly after I got it, but now I LOVE to use it and it's my go to box of tricks for a "no makeup" makeup look, and I much prefer the golden undertones of this palette to the colors in Undressed, it's a beautiful little bargain.
From left to right:
Top row - Naked, Devotion, Shy, Fiery, Lavish, Dreamy
Bottom row - Tranquil, Exposed, Reveal, Obsessed, Corrupt 

Moving on, we actually have some more eye shadows to look at since for me MUA is particularly strong in this area and I was so excited when I saw that MUA also jumped on the chubby stick wagon a while back with their version of the eye crayon, the Colour Blast Eyeshadow Tint (£3). The formula of the pencils is lovely and creamy, and you get a nice sheer coverage without having to be heavy handed or pull on the eyelids. The color is really long wearing and doesn't crease, which is super for any product, but especially one at this price point. There are six lovely shades in the range, but I'm showing you Diamonds, a subtle shimmering girly pink which is perfect as a base shade and Bring it back which is a golden rusty brown, also with a subtle shimmer and I love to wear this just on its own all over the lid, with some black eyeliner, lashings of black mascara and a red lip - classic and simple.

Out of all the products in this post, the next one is my absolute favorite - it's the Bronzer in Shade 1 (£1). The packaging is as basic as it can get, but if you can see past the uninspiring plastic packaging the pigmentation is amazing and it gives a gorgeous natural subtle apricot glow, without any hint of orange (never a good look, unless you're a clementine...). It's easy to apply, it feels lovely and light on the skin and wears well without getting cakey. This product is an absolute steal, and I've repurchased it three times already - says a lot about how well this product is working for me.

My favourite MUA lip product is the Intense Kisses Lipgloss in Kiss and Tell (£1). This formula is very similar to Rimmel's Apocalips and it offers excellent pigmentation, high gloss and long wear (up to about 4 hrs). It's perfect when you're looking for intense opaque coverage with a glossy, glamorous finish and you can't be bothered with adding a separate gloss to a lipstick (yep, that's me). Other selling points for me are that the gloss isn't sticky, it has a subtle candy like vanilla scent and the applicator seems to get just the right amount for nice and even coverage without any bleeding. I've really enjoyed wearing Kiss and Tell which is an intense, warm fuchsia pink and when it fades, it leaves a stain like look that you can easily re-apply the gloss over.
From top to bottom:
Colour Blast Eyeshadow Tints - Diamonds
Colour Blast Eyeshadow Tints -  Bring it back
Bronzer - Shade 1
Intense Kisses Lipgloss - Kiss and tell

As you know, I love my manicures and one of my most loved nail effects is the caviar look. Ever since I first saw Ciatés original caviar manicure, I've been collecting different colored bead mixes that I add every now and then to a standard mani for a more fun, frivolous and whimsical effect. As much as I love Ciaté (and I really REALLY do) and the caviar mani, even I have to say that the standard price (£20) for some micro beads is pretty hefty, and there are other more budget friendly options available. MUA was probably the first brand on the high street to come up with a more affordable alternative, the Nail Constellations (£3) and I have of course added some of them to my caviar collection:
Pisces - a fresh and sporty mix of silver and turquoise, great as an accent to a white nail
Scorpio - an interesting mix of warm gold, copper, forest green and lilac - lovely with a dark green or purple nail
Libra - a dark black and turquoise mix, and for me this works best with plain black
The MUA range continues to grow and fairly recently the MUA Luxe range was introduced with some lovely new products, that are still affordable with no item more expensive than £9. If you haven't already tried MUA you can get the products from your nearest Superdrug or directly from MUA online, so why not make your next makeup haul not only beauty friendly, but budget friendly too!

86 comments:

  1. I love the MUA setting powders and use them everyday to set my foundation :) Makes it last all day, doesn't look cakey and matches my skin ton perfectly! Love them!

    -Shelby
    http://bittersweetshelby.blogspot.co.uk/

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I haven't tried them yet - thanks for the recommendation :o). Xx

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  2. I haven't tried too much from MUA, but I've heard amazing reviews! That bronzer looks really nice :)

    AddictedtoOPI

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    Replies
    1. It's so good, I like to use Bourjois too, but for £1 - it's amazing :o). Xx

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  3. I haven't ever heard of the brand, but that may be because I live in India. I love the fact that the products aren't that expensive!

    Relationships.College.Love

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    Replies
    1. Oh yes, it's great when you don't have to feel guilty for getting some new stuff :o). Xx

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  4. those pearl - like nails are EVERYWHERE. don't know how i feel about them. what if they fell in my food???

    hobovogue.com . ღ

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    1. LOL - that's a good point and maybe I've been lucky but it hasn't happened to me so far... :o). Xx

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  5. Replies
    1. They're definitely super value for money :o). Xx

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  6. Those eye shadows look absolutely divine! I know, I have a hard time not splurging on every beautiful colour I see!
    xo
    styleontheside.com

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    Replies
    1. When you think about it all that for £4 - that's not bad, and no need to feel guilty :o). Xx

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  7. This eyeshadow palette looks great...I will try to check it!


    Kisses from www.withorwithoutshoes.com

    Today I bring you a Comfy but Chic mixing different patterns!
    Giveaway - Renew your closet with these 2 prizes of $100

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great :o)! I hope it works as well for you as it has for me :o). Xx

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  8. Love how budget friendly MUA is - I've got one of their palettes and the powder. Absolutely brilliant for the money!

    Eve & Faye x
    Sugar Spun Sisters - A blog about cosmetics, clothes & coeliac disease

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    1. Agree, it's great when you come across like finds :o). Xx

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  9. As far as I know we dont have MUA in Ireland :( I really want to try some of their stuff mainly the eyeshadow palettes i've heard amazing things about them x

    Molly's Beauty Spot | A Beauty & Lifestyle Blog

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    Replies
    1. You can also buy directly from Muastore.co.uk and they deliver internationally :o). Xx

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  10. NICE BLOG ... FOLLOW ME http://thesweetsuggestion.blogspot.it/

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  11. I've been meaning to try these Nail Constellations i may have to get them next week when i go into town x Great post hun x
    www.momentsofbeautywars.blogspot.co.uk
    Jess x

    Ps- Thanks for your sweet comment on my blog !
    Have a nice day x

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much - have a great weekend :o). Xx

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  12. Nice make up!

    http://blondieanchors.com/

    ReplyDelete
  13. I am not very good at make up so thanks for the tips :)

    Check my amazing Jewelry Giveaway on my blog www.thesecretstop.com

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  14. Replies
    1. They're super value for money and there are so many lovely ones to choose from :o). Xx

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  15. I love those eyeshadow palettes and the caviar looks amazing x

    daisy-drops

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    Replies
    1. If you haven't tried MUA I definitely recommend it, you can find some real gems :o). Xx

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  16. Love Undress Me Too, for a long time I was using it daily now its every now and then because I'm trying to give my shadows equal love! x

    fabheadtotoe.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. LOL I know that feeling, we mustn't neglect our little beauties :o). Xx

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  17. A must try!

    Federica
    http://www.thecutielicious.com

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    Replies
    1. If I were to recommend just one product it would be the bronzer, it's brilliant :o). Xx

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  18. Love the little nail sprinkles! I really want to try MUA :)
    Love the colors as well!
    Thanks for leaving such a sweet comment on my blog!
    Hope you're having a lovely day xx

    ♥ ♡ ♥ ♡ Creme de la Chic ♥ ♡ ♥ ♡

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    Replies
    1. Hi Kelly, thank you so much for visiting :o). The constellations are so much fun and much easier to use than you might think :o). Have a super weekend :o). Xx

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  19. Oh my goodness, I love the look of all of these products. Where can you get MUA? I always wanted to try this brand! :o) I haven't seen it here in Canada. Awesome post, as always! ♥ xo

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    1. Hi Crystal, thank you so much for your lovely comment. You can buy directly from the mustore.co.uk website and they do deliver internationally :o). Xx

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  20. great choices hun , i really need to try there palettes :)
    The Inked Blonde

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    1. I've never tried the Naked palettes so I don't know how they actually compare, but for £4 it's not bad is it :o). Xx

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  21. I must try the Intense Kisses!

    http://ambertypes.blogspot.com xo

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    Replies
    1. It's such a nice formula and great shades to choose from too :o). Xx

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  22. I'm a huge fan of MUA and I've recently started buying make-up from e.l.f and they have some pretty amazing products too! I must admit I've tried the bronzer from MUA and it does nothing for me! I'm quite pale so I chose the lightest colour and it looks like I'm just putting shimmer on my face, I can't see any colour!

    lovefrombethan.blogspot.co.uk

    xox

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    Replies
    1. I haven't tried elf so that's a great tip, thanks for that :o). Xx

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  23. Hi Charlotte, MUA Undressed palette was my favourite in 2013 - it's so versatile and perfect for beginners! :)

    Mademoiselle-Lala.com

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    Replies
    1. That's so great! I'm not surprised though, it really is fab value for money :o). Xx

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  24. I love the Undressed Too palette, really want the first original one! Such gorgeous shades perfect for any occasion.

    Kathryn x
    effievanity.blogspot.co.uk

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    Replies
    1. I agree and at the moment I'm very tempted to get the Heaven and Earth one :o). Xx

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  25. I love love love MUA palettes!

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    Replies
    1. Me too, I've not been disappointed so far :O). Xx

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  26. Replies
    1. I've only tried a blush stick from MUA in a lovley peach color, but that is great too. I'll have to try some of the others, is there one in particular you recommend? Xx

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  27. I love palettes, but I always stick to neutral colours, very simple.

    {Teffy's Perks} X

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    1. In the mornings when you're in a rush, simple and quick is just perfect :o). Xx

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  28. The MUA palettes are amongst some of my most used eyeshadows. They're amazing value for money
    http://www.letstalkbeauty.co.uk/

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    1. Hi Vicki, I completely agree - I can't decide if to get Glitterball or Heaven and Earth next :o). Xx

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  29. You're not on your own Charlotte with the whole beauty junkie/shopaholic thing! I love my Undressed palettes - fantastic value! I also love the MUA Mosaic bronzer xx

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    1. Hey Jenny - ah yes, I've had my eye on it - it's like a budget version of Guerlain! Great tip I have to try that next :o). Xx

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  30. I think I like Undress Me Too more than Undressed. The Libra caviar beads are really pretty. *-* I love Ciate's nail kits; their velvet mani is pretty cute, too. :3

    Sincerely, Christine from Invisible Blush

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    Replies
    1. I'm also such a fan of Ciaté's kits, and just got some great deals in the sale :o). Xx

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  31. Love the MUA Palettes and the Caviar Beads here are just gorgeous and look so exciting, must try soon !
    Do visit my blog & if you like, follow me on Bloglovin & Twitter, leave a comment & I'll surely follow back! Have a lovely day!

    Feisty Fox Diaries

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Hi Stephanie, thank you so much for visiting and for your comment. I'm following you now - have a super weekend :o). Xx

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  32. not going to lie, I got the white mua palette as a gift for someone, though they haven't got it yet and god i wanna keep it lol lovely swatches :)

    I am currently hosting a Valentines Box Swap with another blogger! It's going to be alot of fun! Come take a look ! (link)

    Lucie xxx Fatbeautyx // Latest Post ( Monochrome Look Wishlist )

    Vote for me in the #UKBA14 // LIMECRIME LIPSTICK GIVEAWAY (link)

    January monthly Advertiser - Samantha

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    Replies
    1. She's a lucky girl to get it, the shades are so lovely :o). Xx

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  33. I love MUA products, I tried some out which I featured in my last haul and i'm obsessed with them. I especially love their lip crayons! x
    http://makeupmonster77.blogspot.com.au/

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    1. At those prices you can buy as much as you want and still not feel guilty - well almost... :o). Xx

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  34. I am desperate to find a palette with good matte neutrals. Any recommendations?

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    1. Hi Simone, I don't know of a palette that contains just matte eye shadows, and like you I'm still on the hunt for the perfect matte neutrals. But either of the MUA palettes is lovely and also the Sleek Au Natural palette, which for me has better matte formulas than MUA :o). Xx

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  35. I've never tried any MUA products before but have heard how amazing their palettes are! Great post love x

    www.mascaraandcakes.co.uk

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    1. Hi Samantha - thank you so much, that's really lovely of you :O). Xx

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  36. I love MUA, the palette you have fetured looks amazing - I love the bronzy look of them

    amy-loves.co.uk

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    1. They're surprisingly good and I would definitely recommend MUA eye products :o). Xx

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  37. I've been debating for ages whether I should buy an urban decay pallete but I might just buy on MUA one instead now, definitely a lot cheaper!xx

    http://loobydoobahhdiidoo.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Much, and I wouldn't be surprised if we'll see a MUA Named 3 Dupe very soon :o). Xx

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  38. Love the shimmering eyeshadows! :)
    lipstickandlightening.blogspot.com

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    1. They're great and last surprisingly long :O). Xx

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  39. I've been meaning to try the MUA lip products. I never give this brand enough attention but it's so good considering it's so affordable.

    Hannah x
    http://b-l-a-b.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. To be honest, except for this gloss I haven't really found any MUA Lip products that have worked for me yet so I'm very excited to try the Luxe range and to see if they might work better for me :o). Xx

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  40. I have all of their caviar beads and love all of them, but the silver and turquoise is my favourite! Haven't perfected using them yet, but I'm getting there haha. Really must try out those lip glosses that are like the Apocalips to see if I like the formula. I haven't even tried the Apocalips yet (I know, I'm a bad blogger), but these will be a nice stepping stone into it. Thanks for the post! Given me some new shopping ideas.

    My bank balance doesn't like you for enabling the addiction though ;)
    Kerry x
    dulltoglam.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. It's such a fun and whimsical look - I absolutely love it and have far too many caviar mixes... :o). Xx

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  41. The palettes are just really good dupes of the UD Naked palettes don't you think?

    Mybeautysleuth x

    www.mybeautysleuth.com

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    1. I've never actually tried the Urban Decay palettes, but color wise they seem very similar and since I change my makeup so often and never stick to just one palette the MUA products are a much better value for me :o). Xx

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  42. I have not tried anything from MUA yet. I really want to try the lip glosses they look amazing.

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    Replies
    1. I'm not so keen on the lipsticks but the lip glosses are excellent :o). Xx

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  43. Great post!
    I have the eye palettes too and I have to agree, for £4 they are amazing x

    pearlsandsparkle.blogspot.com

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    Replies
    1. And at this time of year great budget buys are very welcome :o). Xx

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