How to Make the Most of Pure Pigments

It’s the perfect time of year for adding a touch of sparkle to your make-up routine and pigments are by far the best way to do so. With Christmas parties and New Years Eve in mind, I recently bought both Beguile – described as “light shimmer” (?) but actually an iridescent white – and Furore – “champagne peach shimmer” – by Illamasqua.

Having swatched them under bright lights in store, the colour and sparkle was self-evident, I had to buy them! But when I applied them to my lids the next day, I was a little underwhelmed by the pay off. So here is a quick guide on how to make the most of your pigments.

Of course, you could just simply apply the powder to your bare skin for a simple, stripped back look, but the party season demands something a little more dramatic. The strength of your pigment depends on the base they are applied to; below I swatched the pigment alone; with Illamasqua’s Sealing Gel; with Illamasqua’s Vintage Metallix in Courtier; and with MAC’s PaintPot in Painterly.

Beguile

Beguile

Furore

Furore

As you can tell from these pictures, the difference is striking. On my pale skin, both pigments, particularly Beguile, are barely visible when used alone and only add a slight shimmer (which could work well as a subtle highlighter, though Beguile is a little less ‘natural’ due to its iridescent pink and green tones).

MAC’s PaintPot was also pretty useless; I initially thought an eyeshadow base like this one would be perfect for pigments, but the formula is too heavy and thick to allow the powder to be distributed evenly.

courtier

For a daytime look, I was looking for a product that would carry my pigment as well as tone down the glitter. My favourite thing to do this would be Illamasqua’s new Vintage Metallix in Courtier (£16.50). This cream-gel is intended to be used alone (Courtier is a gorgeous “vintage nude” with slight gold shimmer) as a smudge-resistant eyeshadow, however it provides a light but opaque, smooth but slightly tacky base – perfect for a layer of pigment!

For nighttime looks, I needed something that would make my pigments ‘pop’ (cringe… but you know what I mean), so I opted for Illamasqua’s Sealing Gel. This dinky bottle may seem expensive at £7, but it’s uses are endless. It is a mixing medium revered amongst make-up artists for turning eyeshadows into liquid eyeliners. However, if you place a few drops on your eye lid, tap with your finger until it becomes tacky. Once your pigment is applied on top, you’ll see an unbelievable transformation: the colour is bright, the shimmer intense and the coverage even (no lumps of gunky glitter clogging your lid).

This is my version of a day and night look using Pure Pigments (Furore on the left, and Beguile on the right):

How do you make the most of your pigments?

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Hope you like!

Molly x

In Defence of: the Ugly Jumper

It’s that time of year again. The time when that jumper, blazoned with snowflakes, reindeers and christmas puddings, is unearthed for the office party or dinner with the family. It has become a collective, if embarrassing, token of our festive cheer.

But why should the ugly jumper only be for Christmas?

By ‘ugly’ I mean garish, OTT, outlandish and out-dated; the jumpers abandoned in charity shops and vintage markets. They’re hidden gems – the uglier, the better!!

This was my first: an eighties beauty with a bold geometric design found in my local vintage shop. It soon became my go-to “lectures are too early and I can’t be bothered” jumper. It’s bat-wing shape is so comfortable to wear and, with jeans and a simple jacket, can add colour and kookiness to an outfit without any fuss (the pink stripes are interweaved with wisps of white thread).

My next new-old jumper is this zebra print crop found in Cow Vintage. Okay, it’s not exactly ugly, but it’s different to anything I’ve seen in TopShop or Urban Outfitters recently. Its monochrome style means that it can be paired with anything from Levi’s to a pencil skirt.

And finally… my ultimate ugly jumper. Another eighties throwback with bold stripes of different coloured animal print. This jumper knows no bounds when it comes to colour combinations and clashing patterns. Like the first, it has an exaggerated bat-wing sleeve and a loose fit, but it’s gorgeous v-shaped back shows a little bit of flesh in a way that is both unique and feminine.

Throw on a pair of black leather-look jeans and voilà – a complete outfit sans effort, but with tons and tons of character.

What do you guys think of the ugly jumper?

Hope you like!

Molly x