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Thursday, 26 June 2014

Review | Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder


Hi guys! So the topic at hand today is none other than the much hyped/talked about Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder. Now I know that there are a zillion reviews of this product already, but since it has been one of my staple makeup products for several years - waaay waaay before all the hype started, I thought that I’d add my two cents worth too so read on folks…

Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder | Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder | UK Makeup Blog | UK Beauty Blog | UK Beauty Blogger | www.thebellenarrative.com
Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder, £8.95/42g (also available in other sizes)

In a nutshell, Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder is a very finely milled matte loose setting powder with a hint of yellow pigment. Although the powder has been a makeup artist favourite for years it has become a worldwide hit ever since it became public knowledge that Kim Kardashian’s makeup artist uses it to set her under-eye concealer and highlight.

Don't be freaked out by how yellow it looks, the powder is actually translucent with just a hint of colour and is suitable for all skin tones. Being so finely milled, the powder feels light on the skin and has a nice silky feel and texture. It blends into the skin seamlessly leaving you with a smooth, very flawless looking finish. Not only does the yellow pigment in the powder instantly brighten up the skin, but it also gives it a beautiful highlighted glow - yup just like that of Kim Kardashian.

Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder is an uber versatile product. It is of course a top quality all-over face setting powder in its own right, although given its much-famed ability to illuminate the skin it is most commonly used for highlighting the face, especially the under-eye area as seen on Kim K. It can also be used to help combat bluish under-eye circles and to minimise the appearance of redness - note, you will still need to colour correct and conceal first, this is a translucent powder after all so it will not provide coverage. ...So there you go, this is way, way more than just an ordinary setting powder!

I adore this powder for the sole fact that it's the only powder that I’ve come across which is yellow enough to perfectly compliment my golden yellow undertones. So naturally this powder is a permanent fixture on my makeup table - it’s actually the only setting powder that I currently use at the moment, ‘nuff said really. By the way: Makeup manufactures take note – this is how you cater for yellow/golden undertones!!

    
Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder | Beauty Blogger | Makeup Reviews | Makeup Blog | Beauty Blog | Beauty Blogger | www.thebellenarrative.com
 
Recommendations:
This powder tends to work best on those with olive/yellow undertones especially since it doesn’t leave that horrible ashy/white grayish cast that some other loose powders do, it actually does the opposite as it gives your face a gorgeous healthy, radiant glow. Trust me, if you have strong yellow or golden undertones and want to enhance them, then this is the powder for the job. I get so many lovely compliments whenever I wear this powder as it really does make my face glow!

So what if this shade’s not for you? Fear not for Ben Nye Luxury Powders are available in a range of shades to suit all skin tones - "Banana" is just the most talked about shade that’s all. There are loads and loads of reviews out there on the Internet (including some really excellent YouTube videos and blog posts) which explain the ins and outs of the various different shades so check them out if you want to know more, or need help finding your correct shade.

More great things about this powder:
- It is very longwearing – I have combination skin and can normally go 8 hours if not a whole day without having to touch-up. Oily skins should normally be able to go 4-6 hours without having to touch-up but obviously results will vary from person to person. All I can personally say is trust me, this is my holy grail setting powder - once applied my makeup doesn’t budge.

- It is an absolute gem for setting under-eye concealer, not only does it brighten up the under-eye area but it prevents your concealer from creasing and settling into fine lines.

- It doesn't leave a white cast in photographs so is ideal for use in flash photography.

- It is renown for it's superior ability to absorb excess oil and control shine.

- It diminishes the appearance of pores.

- It will not look cakey, providing that you don't use too much product - less really is more with this product.

- It is inexpensive and amazing value for money since you get loads of product. A pot will last you a very looong time, especially as you only need to use a really small amount of product.

Why is the word "Banana" in the product name?
Just in case anyone’s wondering, the product doesn’t smell of bananas or anything, "banana" is just the name of the shade name, the powder is actually fragrance-free which is always a good thing.

I only have two negatives about this product...
1. It contains parabens (nooo why?!!) which I can't even pretend to ignore since it's printed right on the front of the pot. It would be great if Ben Nye were able to reformulate the ingredients, they do take feedback on board so here's hoping...

2. The sifter jar packaging is so annoying!! For such a finely milled powder those sifter holes are ridiculously big (as pictured below). Every time you go to pour some powder out, not only do you dispense way too much product which is just plain wasteful, you also end up making a mess (I hate mess!) as powder goes everywhere! The only thing that I like about the packaging is that it's clear so you can see exactly how much product you have left.


Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder | Beauty Blogger | Makeup Reviews | Makeup Blog | Beauty Blog | Beauty Blogger | www.thebellenarrative.com
 
Tips for dealing with the not-so-great packaging:
- Before using this powder it’s best to lay down some paper in preparation for the ensuing mess.
- To minimise wastage some people cover all but one/two of the sifter holes with Sellotape, whilst others pour the powder into an old loose powder container, one that's better designed to do the job of course!

    Where to buy it...
    I normally purchase my Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder from the Screenface store in Covent Garden, but it is widely available to purchase online (I never understand why some people make it sound like this stuff is really really hard to get hold off when it isn't). Screenface sell it on their website too, but it always seems to be out of stock so here's a couple of places that sell it online and seem to regularly have a good supply - both ship internationally: Guru Makeup Emporium and PAM.

    In summary:
    Yes this product most definitely does live up to the hype and without a doubt it’s the best setting powder that I’ve ever used!!

    Wow I seemed to have written loads (I have a passion for good product)...so there you go, a very detailed review for you - I hope that you found it helpful :)

    Have you tried Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder?

    Aimee xx

    Thursday, 5 June 2014

    New Playsuit | Quiz at House of Fraser


    When it comes to shopping I love my department stores, so when I was given the opportunity to review an item of my own choice from the House of Fraser website I rather excitedly accepted the offer. All I can say is wow, talk about being spoilt for choice, there are so many nice things on that website!

    It was a real tough choice and eventually I picked out this gorgeous aqua playsuit by Quiz:

    Playsuit | House of Fraser | Fashion Blog | Fashion Blogger | www.thebellenarrative.com
    Playsuit | Summer Fashion | UK Fashion Blog | UK Fashion Blogger | www.thebellenarrative.com

    Quiz Textured Cut Out Playsuit c/o House of Fraser

    I chose this lovely playsuit because I thought that it would be great for summer and it's just an overall great garment really, I love the fact that it's nice and fitted and requires minimal styling. Not only is the colour absolutely gorgeous, it is bang on trend too (surely you've seen all that aqua/mint green floating about - especially on the blogosphere!). I don't actually think that I've even got anything this colour in my wardrobe so it will be nice to try something different. I also love the contrast trim and the cut out back detail, both features make the playsuit really striking.

    This playsuit is actually extremely versatile as it can take you from day to night very easily, for an effortless evening look all you really need to do is add a pair of black heels and a statement necklace. The playsuit costs £24.99 which I think is a great price for such a lovely versatile garment. The only negative I have about this playsuit is that the fabric crumples up slightly at the front, just above the black waistband, but I guess it's a minor detail considering how stunning the playsuit looks when it's actually worn. I will of course of be posting some outfit pictures to show you just how lush this playsuit really is, I wish that the weather heats up again soon! Speaking of warm weather, this playsuit is definitely going in my suitcase the next time that I go on holiday!

    Do you like your playsuits too? What are your thoughts on this one :)

    Aimee xx