Friday, March 28, 2014

Butter London Lippy- Review

Hello all!

I got my packages in the post from CutECOsmetics yesterday (yay!), and can't wait to review everything. I decided I'd start with the Butter London Lippy, of which I only ordered one but already own two others. I'm a big fan of Butter London nail varnishes because they have such unique colours, many of which seem un-dupeable. The Lippy's are designed to match certain shades of the nail varnishes, although I don't own any corresponding sets. They are described as "liquid lipstick" on the UK site and "lip gloss" on the Canadian site, when in fact they fall somewhere in between. They have the opacity of some liquid lipsticks; however, they don't dry down to a "lipstick" consistency on the lips, but stay slippery and glossy.

I decided not only to review "Primrose Hill Picnic", which is the Lippy I got in my order, but also "Queen Vic" and "Come to Bed Red", which I already had in my collection. 

From Left to Right: Primrose Hill Picnic, Queen Vic, Come to Bed Red

Doe-foot applicator

From Bottom to Top: Primrose Hill Picnic, Queen Vic, Come to Bed Red

First, some notes that pertain to all of the Butter London Lippy's I've tried. As I suggested earlier, they fall somwhere between a liquid lipstick and a lip gloss, but I would be more comfortable grouping them with the latter. To me they are a medium to full coverage lip gloss that remains moist, moisturizing, and glossy throughout wear. They are a thick consistency and are slightly tacky, but not sticky or high-shine. All of the Lippy's I've tested over the years have the same sweet, confectionary smell, more along the lines of candy than vanilla. However, my Primrose Hill Picnic has a mildly unpleasant cosmetics smell, which is definitely not indicative of Lippy's as a group. I know that Primrose Hill Picnic was one of the first shades released, so I'm wondering whether the confectionary scent had yet to be added, or I just got a very old product (ugh, I hope not!)

Primrose Hill Picnic
First up, Primrose Hill Picnic. Butter London describes it as "a punchy, tropical, fuchsia bright pink." I would say this description is right on point. Primrose Hill Picnic is an opaque bright blue-pink that really adds a punch to your lips. Despite its funky smell, I love this colour. I am a fan of anything pink, and this glossy bright hue makes your lips look full and juicy. It's a perfect pink for a spring or summer day!

Queen Vic

Queen Vic is described as a "vibrant cranberry," which I would have to disagree with. I would describe it as a magenta or an orchid, a purpley-pink that pulls more purple on me. This shade is not as opaque as some of the others I have tried, and adds more of a subtle pop of colour than its Primrose Hill Picnic sister. I keep this one in my handbag as my goes-with-everything shade, as it usually works with whatever look I'm wearing and feels great on the lips. I also love wearing it over MAC Rebel lipstick, as I find they pair really well together. According to the Canadian website, Queen Vic is only available in the US and Canada. Sorry UK friends!

Come to Bed Red

Come to Bed Red is described as a "classic, bright red." It's a short and simple description, but it sums it up perfectly. Although it appears a more pink in the above photo (oh, to have a fancy camera and some proper lighting), it really is a true blue-red that is almost opaque (see above swatch for a more accurate idea). I love wearing this instead of red lipstick because it's low maintenance and still provides red-lip glamour. It also looks stunning layered over a red lipstick for that extra kick.

Butter London Lippy's retail for £14.00 in the UK, $18.00 in the USA, and $19.00 in Canada. I highly suggest them if you're looking for a full coverage lip gloss that stays put! Check out the various shades here:

Have you ever tried Butter London Lippy's? What colours catch your eye?

xo hannah

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

April Lust List

Hello friends!

There have been so many items piling up on my "to buy" list (or in some cases, "to dream about"... if only money grew on trees!). I decided to narrow it down to four of my most coveted products and compile an April "Lust List." I'd love to hear from you if you've tried any of these products, so I know if they live up to the hype/my hopes!

Let's get started...

1. Cheeky Nail Varnish in "Purple Haze": I posted about Cheeky products in the post below, and since then I've been back to Superdrug to peruse the product line more extensively. I swatched the colour "Purple Haze" and immediately added it to my must-have list. It's sophisticated lilac grey that would be a beautiful transition shade from winter to spring. It retails for £7.00, but is currently on sale at Superdrug for £4.65. I guess it's fate!

2. NYX Butter Glosses in Peach Cobbler (left) and Maple Blondie (right): If you follow beauty blogs, then you've definitely heard about the NYX Butter Glosses, which are supposed to be smooth, moisturizing, deliciously scented, and wearable.  Peach Cobbler is (as it's name suggests) a soft peachy shade that would look pretty over a coral lip or on its own, and Maple Blondie appears to be the soft pink lipgloss of my dreams. Ugh, I wish I could get my hands on these! They're available in the UK at some Next stores (but not the one in my city) and online, but they also retail for £5.00, and I know I could get them in the States for $5.00 or in Canada for $5.99, which is a lot easier on the wallet. I sent my sister on a mission back at home, but she has yet to find them. I suppose I might have to turn to Amazon to get my fix!

3. Boots No7 Peony Petals Blush Palette: This blush is just SO pretty. Everything from the unique shimmery lilac colour to the flower pattern and glossy black packaging is calling my name. I think this would just look so fresh and ethereal on the cheeks, giving you a hint of colour that isn't your everyday pink or coral hue. It could also work as highlighter (yay for multitasking!) It is special edition for Spring and retails at £12.00, but if you have any Boots vouchers hanging around, you can get £3.00 off of No7 makeup until March 30. Hoping to use my points and have this baby in my possession soon!

4. Urban Decay Naked Skin Ultra Definition Loose Finishing Powder in Naked Medium Light: The last one on this list is probably a bit of a pipe dream for me, at least until I can get back to North America and pick it up at a slightly less expensive price (£22.00 in the UK at Debenhams vs. USD$34.00 and C$40.00 at Sephora). It's supposed to give a flawless, airbrushed finish to foundation, blurring pores and setting your makeup for longer wear. I love the lightweight feel of mineral powders, and this seems to have garnered nothing but positive reviews since its recent release. Easy, perfect skin? Where do I sign up?

What's on your April Lust List? 

xo hannah

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Cheeky! - Mini Haul and Review

Greetings friends!

I recently discovered a new brand, "Cheeky", while perusing the Superdrug aisles. Cheeky is described as "Cowshed's naughty little sister," and is marketed towards a younger set than Cowshed's more adult line. I was immediately drawn in by the's so minimalist and quirky! The line is most notable for its 30-shade nail varnish range, but also contains 5 bath/body products, 6 haircare products, and 3 cosmetic products. Obviously I had to pick something up!

In the end I chose the "Unleash Your Locks" shampoo and the "Kiss 'n' Tell" lip and cheek tint in "Fire Starter." They retail for £7.50 and £10.00 respectively, but are currently on offer for 1/3 off at Superdrug. Both products are paraben-free, do not contain mineral oils or petroleum, and are vegetarian friendly.

I'm still working through my current shampoo, so I can't offer any opinions yet (except that it smells really fresh and clean, like green tea!), but I tried out the "Kiss 'n' Tell" cheek and lip tint this morning and I'm in love.

"Kiss 'n' Tell" cheek and lip tint in Fire Starter
The cheek/lip tint comes in two shades, "Posey," which is a rosy pink, and "Fire Starter" (which I picked up). "Fire Starter" looks intimidating in the pan: it is definitely a bright, fiery red to the eye. But on the face and lips it blends into the prettiest, most Snow White looking flush. Seriously, if you covet fairy tale rosy cheeks and lips, this is the product for you. It shows up much heavier on the face than on the lips, so apply with a light hand. As a lip product, it can be built up or sheered out for a barely there flush.

Fire Starter on cheeks and lips

I'm so in love with this colour as a cream blush.I probably wouldn't buy it as a lip tint, but I love that it doubles as one. My only qualm is with the texture: its quite waxy, and you have to blend pretty vigorously on the cheeks. However, I do like that the main ingredients are natural waxes such as beeswax and carnauba wax instead of icky chemicals, so that's the trade off I suppose!

Cheeky has a flagship salon in East London called "Cheeky Parlour" that offers manicures, pedicures, blow outs, and makeup consultations. It looks just as adorable as its products! You can order Cheeky products online at or at Superdrug. Unfortunately, they aren't available in North America or Europe (they ship there, but the prices are exorbitant!) If you're planning a trip to London, it looks like the Cheeky Parlour would be a great place to swing by for a spa and shopping excursion.

I'm dying to get my hands on some of the nail varnish colours and the body buff, which smells divine. Have you tried any of the Cheeky products?

xo hannah 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Polish Review - Barry M.'s "Arabian"

Hello all!

Barry M. has just released the new "Aquarium" Collection, available at Superdrug and Boots for £3.99. This collection contains four ocean-inspired duochromes and two complementary chunky glitter overcoats, and all of the colours look absolutely stunning!

I'm trying to curb my Barry M. obsession (seriously, it's getting ridiculous), so I limited myself to one at the moment and picked up "Arabian," which is unlike anything I have in my collection. It's a showstopping serpent green with gold duochrome, and is so spectacular and shimmery when it catches the light! Pictures simply cannot do it justice.

Barry M.'s "Arabian", 2 coats

Different lighting

These polishes consistently surprise me with their high quality finish. Duochromes and metallics run the risk of showing brush strokes, but "Arabian" applied completely smoothly, not a brush sroke to be seen! After two coats it was completely opaque. I'm on my third day of wear and there isn't even a suggestion of chipping, even at the tips which are usually the first to go. Colour me impressed!

If you're looking for a really unique green or just love duochromes, I highly suggest  "Arabian". Next on my list is "Caspian", that gorgeous looking rose gold. Watch out "Caspian," I'm coming for you!

Have you tried the Aquarium Collection? Any hits or misses?

xo hannah

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Deals! Glorious Deals!

Hello friends!

I was reading my beauty blog rounds today and ended up stumbling upon the website CutECOsmetics ( in my pursuit of Lime Crime lipsticks (hello, wishlist). And lo and behold, what did the homepage announce but a HUGE STOCK CLEARANCE SALE.


We are talking butter London for £6. Korres Lip butters for £4. So many wonderful things that made my heart flutter.

The best part is that all the brands are eco, organic, and cruelty free. 

Call me an enabler. ;)

Are you already formulating your potential hauls?

xo hannah

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Lipstick Queen "Saint Rose" - Review

Hello everyone!

Today I'm reviewing a lipstick that I just bought a few days ago, Lipstick Queen's "Saint Rose." If you haven't heard of Lipstick Queen, I suggest you go read up on it and then promptly buy one of their lipsticks, because they are amazing. Created by "lipstick designer" Poppy King, they are emollient and pigmented lip colours within unique lines that add some "oomph" to your lipstick collection. They are sold through Space NK in the UK and Anthropologie, Barney's, and specialty stores in Canada and the US. They can also be purchased through the Lipstick Queen website,

Lipstick Queen "Saint Rose" (£20.00/C$23.00) is a sheer, antique pink, "inspired by the rosebud-painted lips of antique dolls." It is part of the "Saint" line, which, at 10 percent pigment, is deigned to offer a sheer wash of colour for an instant lip pick-me-up. This line is excellent because the products can be used as a sheer swipe of colour (see swatches below) or built up for a more concentrated shade.

This particular shade is a really pretty universal soft pink. When applied in one swipe it offers a very soft, barely-there glossy pink hue to the lips, but when built up it is a true "rose" that holds true to its vintage inspiration. This is a great every day lipstick to have in your handbag, since you can reach for it if you want a moisturizing gloss or a pigmented lip on the go. It feels lovely on the lips and isn't drying in the least. Even more impressive for a sheer lipstick, it has staying power, and was still clinging to my lips a few hours after application.

Left: One swipe of LQ "Saint Rose" Right: Several swipes

"Saint Rose", built up with several layers

I think soft rosy pinks like these are so feminine without being too "little-girly", and really do perk up your complexion. It's a great all year colour, but will look especially pretty in spring!

Final Verdict: 8/10

Have you tried Lipstick Queen products? What are your favourite pinks?

xo hannah

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Facial Moisturizer Showdown

Hello everyone!

I recently finished up the facial moisturizer I've been using for a year, LUSH's "Imperialis," and purchased Korres' "Wild Rose 24-Hour Moisturising Brightening Cream." I thought it would be helpful to do a comparison of the two in case any one is in the market for a day cream!

For reference, my skin is normal to dry, leaning towards the latter in during the cold Canadian winters and humid summers. For this reason, I look for day creams that are tailored towards dry skin without being too thick or greasy (because no one wants to put makeup over skin that feels like that!)

First up: LUSH Imperialis ( £12.75/C$24.95). I really love the idea of LUSH skincare, because it feels nice to know that the cream that you're slathering on your face has natural, beneficial ingredients. It contains "infusions of lavender, St John’s wort, sweet violet, sunflower, elderflower, and mullein", and is touted as the perfect all-around moisturizer for all skin types . At first, I quite liked this moisturizer, because it just felt nicer than a lot of the more synthetic drugstore brands that I had always reached for. The one thing I was never too keen about was its scent; I don't like using highly perfumed creams, and this one smells very strongly of orange blossoms and tiger lily. Some people rave about the scent, but I never actually liked it. As far as consistency, Imperialis is a bit runnier than some day creams, which I liked because it was easy to blend and never felt thick. However, I never found it sunk into the skin particularly easily, and always left me feeling a bit greasy. By the end of the tub, the greasy feeling plus the scent left me desperate to try something new.

Final Verdict: 6.5/10

My Imperialis, looking a bit worse for wear!

Up next: Korres' Wild Rose 24-Hour Moisturizing Brightening Cream ( £20.00/C$44.00). Korres is another company that is known for using a high concentration of natural ingredients in their products, which is definitely a plus for skincare. I was actually attracted to their pomegranate moisturizer at first, which has a lovely gel-like consistency, but ended up purchasing the Wild Rose because it was suitable for normal-dry skin (you can also purchase it in an formula tailored for oily-combination skin). The packaging feels luxurious and hardy, and although it's scented, it is a faint rosy scent that is very pleasant and not over-powering. This cream is much richer than Imperialis (see swatches below), but sinks in quickly and leaves the skin feeling thoroughly moisturized instead of greasy. I find a little goes a long way, simply because it is so rich and blends so easily. Although it is labelled as a "24 Hour" cream, I still feel it's a bit heavy for my everyday morning routine, but I use it at night and on days where I feel as though my skin needs some extra nourishment. However, this is personal preference, so if you like richer day creams, then you might love this!

Final Verdict: 8/10

Left: LUSH Imperialis, Right: Korres Wild Rose

What do you look for in a facial moisturizer? Any suggestions?

xo hannah

Monday, March 17, 2014

Make-Up Look of the Day - Skype Interview

Hello everyone!

I've decided that I will try to post once a week about a certain makeup look I wore, so why not start today?

I have a Skype interview coming up later today with a prospective PhD programme, so I wanted to do something that was natural, understated, and professional.

Different Lighting!

On my eyes I'm wearing Fyrinnae's "Koala", which is a lovely taupey-brown that looks fantastic just on its own. To keep it light, I only used MAC's Liquid Last eye liner and Buxom mascara on my upper lash line.

On my face I'm wearing Max Factor's Whipped Creme Foundation in 45 Warm Almond, which provides a nice, demi-matte finish without looking too cakey or overdone. To that base I added a light dusting of my favourite bronzer, Too Faced Chocolate Soleil (review to come!) and Benefit's Bella Bamba on the apples of my cheeks.

On my lips I swiped one coat of MAC's "Capricious," which is a really nice every-day lipstick for my natural lip shade. It's a bit dark for the spring, but it should show up nicely in the questionable lighting of my room!

Let me know what you think, and if you'd like to see an in-depth review of any of these products!

xo hannah 


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Barry M. "Key Lime" - Green Nails for St. Paddy's!

Tomorrow is Saint Patrick's Day, which back in North America usually takes the form of a day of debauchery, drinking, and plenty of "Kiss Me, I'm Irish!" t-shirts. In honour of St. Patrick's Day, I've decided to take a bit more of an understated approach to celebration. Yay for green nails!

I scoured my extensive nail polish collection for a perfect green nail polish and settled on Barry M.'s Gelly Nail Paint in "Key Lime." Barry M.'s nail paints aren't available in the US or Canada, but if you venture over to the UK it's definitely worth picking up one (or four...or ten...). To say I'm obsessed with this formula would be putting it mildly. It's super pigmented, usually only needs two coats, stays on forever, and has the most beautiful glossy shine. The best part? It's all for the low price of £3.99 at Boots and Superdrug!

"Key Lime" is such a fantastic green. It certainly is lime, but it's a muted version, so it isn't too much of an in-your-face lime like a lot of nail polishes in this hue tend to be. It took me 2 coats to get this lovely shade and opaque, shiny finish. This is my third day wearing it, and it still looks close to perfect!

Have you tried the Barry M. nail paints? What is your favourite green this St. Patrick's Day?

Leave a comment below!

xo hannah 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Welcome to RL&RW!

Hello World!

I'm so excited to be writing my first post. I've wanted to start a beauty blog for years, but always felt too inexperienced/technologically inept/shy, so I'm proud to have finally gotten this pet project rolling!

First, the boring part - a little bit about me. My name's Hannah, and I hail from just outside of Toronto, Canada. I am currently living in England as I pursue my Masters degree. I have two loves in my life: the first being Medieval History, which I am studying and hope to make my career; the second being the wonderful world of beauty, which I love to dabble in when I'm not studying. The name of this blog reflects these two loves: rosewater was one of the essential ingredients in many medieval cosmetics, and red lips are the classic component of modern beauty. A perfect union I think!

I intend to update this blog with product reviews (from both the UK and North America), top favourites, hauls, and random musings. I can't wait to start this journey, so stay tuned!

xo hannah

PS: shout out to my darling little sister Paytie, who has been bugging me to do this for months....we've been living apart for a while and she's off to university far away next year (sob!) so hopefully this can be our special project/bonding activity! Love you girl xxx