This post is quite photo heavy (apologies!) but I just had to share with you these super cute pieces that I've picked up recently which are from the Dainty Doll makeup range by Nicola Roberts (of the now defunct Girls Aloud fame!). Nicola is super pale skinned and has always struggled to find makeup, particularly bases, to suit her and so, when taking part in a television programme called "The Passions of Girls Aloud" Nicola decided that she would formulate her own range of products specially suited to paler skinned women. Originally these were produced by the Jelly Pong Pong brand but I think Nicola then branched out on her own and Dainty Doll was formed.
Now, I wouldn't ever consider myself to be particularly pale skinned but I am actually paler than I think and I guess the lack of long summers in the UK has definitely depleted any semblance of tan I had. I was starting to notice that my beloved Estee Lauder Double Wear was leaving tide marks on my jaw (bad) and I was quite surprised about that because I was colour matched for it at the counter, however thinking back that was in September so I'd had a whole summer for my skin to tan and obviously by January/February time my skin was much paler. So I had been on the look out for a paler foundation but I didn't really want to spend too much on one that I might only use for a few months, and I was definitely drawn to Dainty Doll because I had heard a lot of good reviews about it.
The first pieces of the range that I picked up were the Wonderbalm in 001 Working Girl and the blusher in 001 Hippy Hippy Shake. I found these in TK Maxx both priced at £3.99 (usually the RRP for these products is somewhere around the £20 mark.) The Wonderbalm is, exactly as it suggests, a balm for dry skin which can also be used as a dewy highlighter. I've been using it as a bit of everything; it works well as a brow gel, a highlighter for the cupids bow or even lip balm, I also use it on my hands for any dry patches and I absolutely love it. It comes in a handy mirror-lidded pot and is super easy to keep in your bag for touch ups on the go.
The blusher is also really pretty, it is a pale lilac shade which is quite pigmented and buildable, conversely I think this will look better on me when I have a bit of a tan but I have used it a couple of times and it gives a nice flushed finish, just a little different to my usual rose or peach cheek colours.
After I picked up these items I was keen to try more, but wasn't sure where to find it! I thought I'd try eBay and sure enough, found loads of different items at ridiculously cheap prices. Of course these items are brand new and unused, I suppose because the range is maybe a couple of years old now it's not as desirable as it was when it was first launched? Whatever the reason, I took the opportunity to snap up a couple of things!
I chose the liquid foundation in 003 Medium after some extensive YouTube research, I found a few different bloggers swatching the shades so I could get a better idea of how it looked on the skin than from the stock photo's. Medium seems like a really close match for my natural skin tone, comparing it to my Double Wear, it makes the Double Wear look very orange, and the nice thing about this foundation was that I didn't have to over blend, I literally applied it and it vanished into my skin, which is always the measure of a good colour match, I feel! It did look quite milky coming out of the tube but it gives my skin a flawless finish; it looks like my skin, but a better version of it, like I am wearing less makeup which is always a good thing! I'm tempted to buy it in the shade dark (!) for summer wear, it also comes in shades very light and light, very light being the closest you can get to a white foundation, for girls like Nicola who have that incredibly pale, almost translucent looking skin. The only thing I found to be a little off about this foundation was that I found it a little drying; it's a liquid foundation but I found I had to make sure I used a decent moisturiser and oil based primer underneath to stop my skin feeling taut. So maybe if you suffer from dry skin this wouldn't be the best bet for you. I think I paid around £4 including postage for this, so it was a complete bargain!
The next product I chose was also for the base and it's the Hot Pour Concealer in shade 003 Abracadabra. I feel like I could have gone down a shade on this as this concealer is actually darker than the foundation so I don't think I get the best match from it, I've been using a different one which is actually a bit paler. However if I am wearing the Dr Jart BB cream, I find this concealer matches up really well with that, it's a creamy consistency and seems to last well throughout the day and covers dark circles and blemishes well. Again I can't remember the actual price I paid but it was definitely under £5 including postage.
Lastly I also chose a lipstick, I absolutely love the texture of these lipsticks and will buy another one for sure! I chose this goldy-nude shade which is called 007 Stripped. It's a warm based nude with a gold undertone which is super wearable and moisturising. I've been on the lookout for a nice nude lipstick for ages so I was really pleased to find this. I think this cost around £3, also from eBay, brand new in the box.
I want to finally comment on the packaging! I'm not normally a sucker for packaging but I absolutely fell in love with this, the matte black boxes have the quirky illustration on the front and each product has a really cute name, inside, the product is packaged again in matte black with gold script writing on them, which makes them look and feel really expensive!
I am thrilled with the pieces I've got from this range and I will definitely be buying more! If you search eBay I'm sure you'll be able to find some yourself if you want to try it out, additionally I think Amazon also stocks this range. Or maybe you have some already? I'd love to know what you think!