Monday, April 29, 2013

April Favourites // All About Eyes

I’ve been relishing in the tonal variations of the neutral eye shadows in my collection this month, and even more so since I’ve been focused on teaching. With less time for intricate blending and the like, I have come to appreciate the ease and beauty of these shades. Once again my Maybelline Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze is among my favourites, especially when layered under Maybelline Silken Taupe to create an icy neutral sort of eye look.
Burberry has also been gracing my lids often, with my two pans (Pale Barley & Rosewood) getting quite a workout during April. I love how long these shadows last on my lids without creasing, and they are so quick to blend that I hardly have to work on them in the early morning, pre-coffee haze.
Liner is another eye product that is fast becoming one of the most exciting parts of my makeup routine, despite it once being something I rarely reached for. The Australis Curve Ink* still impresses me with its amazing lasting power and easy to use (though unusual) packaging. For pencil I’ve been loving Hot Chocolate from essence, which is a self-sharpening chocolate stick that I’ve been using lightly along my lash line to create a nice shape and intensify my mascara as well.
Speaking of mascara, I’ve been loving my Covergirl Clump Crusher, using my Face of Australia Impact Curl mascara coating my lower lashes daily.  I know a lot of people aren’t a fan of lots of mascara on the bottom lashes, but I love the way it opens my eyes right up. I feel as though I can wear less makeup on the rest of my face when I use mascara on my lower lashes, so I have been using it for the majority of this month.
So April is wrapped up, a month of lots of lashes, liner galore and pretty neutral shadows to cover my lids. I hadn’t planned on having an eye centred favourites list for this month, but things happen!
How often do you wear mascara on your lower lashes?
Are you a liquid liner or pencil gal?
*Marked items provided for consideration.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Blush Duos : The Beauty of Two Shades in One Palette! // Illamasqua Katie/Ambition & Lover/Hussy

Blush is a definite weakness for me, and so when one of my favourite brands brought out 2 blush duos, you can bet I was elated! I bought the Hussy/Lover duo before it officially came out with the Illamasqua I’mPerfection collection, as the two shades were often lauded on other blogs and I was aching to try them. I wear the orange-apricot Lover more than I wear the strongly pigmented Hussy, and I think it looks great with neutral eyes and a peachy lip.

The other newly released duo was atop my wishlist when it landed on my desk soon after the release. I love that Illamasqua paired a rare shimmer formula of Ambition with the pale pink matte Katie. Having the option of matte or glowy cheeks in the one palette is quite a cool concept, and I had been wanting to get my hands on Ambition for a long time so am glad that need was satisfied.

Katie, Ambition, Lover, Hussy
I have heard a few people say that Katie is too pale a shade to be included in a palette like this, but as I am extremely fair I am happy with the choice of blushes in each of these. Now that I’m looking at my swatches, I don’t know why I don’t wear Ambition and Hussy more often as they are simply beautiful! I have had great success with all of the Illamasqua products I have tried so far, particularly the blushes which I find blend beautifully and last really well on my cheeks.
-Great for people who don’t find themselves finishing whole blush pans
-Easy to try two shades from a quality brand at a lower price ($39.00 AUD at Myer!)
-Popular shades from a known brand
-A good way to branch out into shades you might not have bought individually
-Katie may be too pale for deeper skin tones
-Some may not like both shades within a palette
-Only two colour options at this point in time
-Hardcore beauty lovers might already own some of the shades
-Precision needed when using a larger blush brush in between both pans
What are your thoughts on the idea of blush duos?
Have you ever finished a pan of blush before?

*One duo was provided for consideration, the other I personally purchased. Honesty, always.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Home Sweet Home // essence Winter collection // Photos, Swatches, Review

My love for the affordable German cosmetics brand essence has been well documented on this blog, and with each new collection my love seems to grow. The new Home Sweet Home collection has a distinctively wintery theme to it, which suits the rain and grey skies that Melbourne has been treating us to lately. I prefer cold weather in general, warm knits and boots are my thing and so when I saw the knitted embossing on the powders my heart just soared.
I usually only pick a few select items from a new collection as I have to keep my budget in mind, but the low prices of essence products make it hard to stop at just one or two pieces. The two blushes are so beautiful and are worthy of entering my blush drawer on looks alone, to be honest. I love the orange and hot pink mix of 02 Wool-D You Cuddle Me? but my favourite would have to be the pale pink and deep pink mix of 01 Knits For Chicks.
As with the other essence blushes I have tried in the past, these are a touch more chalky than I would like, but for the price I really don’t mind the formula at all. The colour lasts quite a while on the cheek, though naturally they don’t have the lasting power of a blush powder from the likes of Chanel or Tarte.
Now that I’ve gotten the hang of wearing neutral and brown shadows more often, I decided to pick up the chocolate shade along with the pale pink shadow. I plan on using the pale pink as a soft highlight, which is a tip I picked up from the beautiful Vita. The 3 eyeshadows from this collection are 01 Happy Couching, 02 Light the Fire, Place! and 03 My Home is my Castle.

blushes (individual stripes, then whole pan mixed) // eyeshadows

Though I liked the look of all 4 polishes from this collection, I was selective and really thought about which shade I would cherish the most. Hot Fruit Punch is a raspberry red and the berry twist in it really suits my colouring. I tend to wear these sorts of reds more than the fire engine varieties, so am happy to see more berry polishes coming out in stores.
What do you think of the wintery feel of this collection? What would you most like to see used in a makeup look?
*I personally purchased all of these items. Honesty, always.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Wishlist #2 // 2013

I am surprised that this is only my second wishlist for the year, though I did manage to pick up ¾ of my last wish list (post here if you are interested!) This time it seems to be eye and lip centered, though I am still lusting over Chanel Rouge and some of the new Face of Australia glitter polishes…
I am huge fan of the Clinique Chubby Sticks, and naturally am dying to try the version they are bringing out for eyes. I think I will be getting the lilac shade and some of the neutral/brown shadow sticks, but I’m excited to swatch the whole lot when they come out in Australia.
Nars are always coming out with palettes I lust over, and the latest offering is no different. And God Created the Woman is filled with shades I’ve been wanting to try (Coconut Grove, anyone?!) as well as a brush and an eye primer. I’ve heard the primer is the bomb diggity, so I’d like to try it out for myself now that my MAC Paint Pot is running out.
I will admit that I often pass over the Too Faced counter at Kit Cosmetics, though the shadows do look quite pretty. It wasn’t until I saw this Boudoir eyeshadow palette that I wanted to purchase one, and I think that the colour mix in this is something I will get a lot of use from. I quite like the tin style packaging these come in, and don’t mind the $50ish price tag for so many shades.
I have been loving all of the drugstore type lip products that have been launching lately (Maybelline Vivids, L’Oreal Shine Caresse etc) and have been eagerly anticipating Rimmel’s new faces. The Apocalips look a lot like the liquid lipstick hybrids we have seen around lately, and the colours seem really pretty and wearable. Am contemplating heading to Asos to order one in, but they are always out of the colours I’d most like.
Everybody knows I have a weakness for YSL lip products, and the new Rouge Volupte Shine’s seem like the perfect midway point between the creamy Rouge Volupte’s and the Sheer Candy’s that I have in my collection. I have my eye on a few shades, but have showed restraint so far.
I only bought my first beauty product from Dior late last year, and though I often admire the new collections it takes a lot for me to want to take something home from the counter. When I saw the new Dior Addict Lipgloss colours they had released for (US) Spring and found out they had changed the formula slightly, I knew I had to give this famous glosses a go. Chris actually bought me one of this beauties yesterday, but I’ve kept them on the list as I know I will be picking up some other shades down the line. They feel so nice on and the colour range is just stunning!
This wishlist has been saved in my phone for well over a month now, and I am enjoying contemplating my purchases rather than just diving in and later feeling regretful. Doing my Post Grad and placement means there is hardly any time left over for shifts on the side, so as well as helping me save this little list is helping me stay on track with products I will really use and love.
What is on your current wishlist?

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Covergirl Clump Crusher // Mascara Review For You!

Trying out a new mascara is something I love to do, as I think my lashes are one of my best features and I’ll take any chance to play that up. I tend to use drugstore/Priceline mascaras as I am on a budget, and would rather spend the big bucks on something like a blush or an eyeshadow palette as opposed to something that I will have to get rid of within a few months. This is only the second Covergirl mascara I have ever tried, and it is definitely one of the best low end mascaras I have come across!

The Covergirl Clump Crusher is a rubber wanded fat green tube or eye heaven, which promises not to clump even with a stack of coats atop your lashes. Naturally when a claim like that is made you feel the urge to pile on the mascara, and I am happy to report that the claims are TRUE and you can swipe this bad boy over your lashes over and over without risk of clumping or creating spider lashes. I have naturally long lashes but this still gave me length as well as volume and I love the fuller look it gives to my lashes.

I’ve been using this mascara for a few months now and the formula hasn’t dried out yet, so I’m quite pleased and will definitely repurchase this when the time comes. I have fallen in love with a few mascaras over the years (Face of Australia Impact Curl, Lancome Doll Eyes, etc) but this is probably my favourite to date!

Covergirl Clump Crusher retails for $17.95 but is often on sale for $10 at Priceline etc. I personally purchased this tube for myself at $10 from Priceline when it first came out.

What is your favourite mascara? What sort of things do you look for when buying one? Have you tried any great Covergirl mascaras in the past?

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

A Coral Moment

A definite inspiration for my makeup choices come from outside influences. Seeing a product on a fellow blogger can really spark up an interest for me and it isn’t long before I am hooked onto the need to own the particular formula or shade. Luckily for me, when I spotted some bright coral shades on Estee of Essie Button fame, I had the exact products she wore tucked inside my desk drawers. A big fan of the Stila Convertible Colours, I originally purchased Gerbera after hearing about it on Belle Lumiere. See what I mean about #beautybloggerproblems! The bright orange shade is so wearable but isn't a sheer wishy washy sort of orange, and I find this works best when applied with either a flat paddle foundation brush or my Samantha Chapman for Real Techniques stippling brush. I am yet to try the Stila CC’s on my lips and I doubt I ever will, nor do I see myself applying my blush with my fingers anytime soon, but it's nice to know I have the option!

Estee paired the beautiful orange cheek with one of my favourite lip products, the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable balm stain in Rendezvous. This is definitely one of the best and brightest shades, so naturally it isn’t available in Australia and came to me by ye olde eBay. Seriously stunning and worth tracking down, this is easily buildable and I wear it sheer sometimes, but mostly I layer it up to make a bright pout and it lasts (and fades) really nicely on me. Sometimes I forget how nice it is to pair shades together on the face, so was pleased with how the two stand-out products tied a whole look together for me.

How often do you tie in your cheek colour to your lips? What do you think of coral for cheeks?

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Soap & Glory Fab Pore Hot Cloth Cleanser

I am a firm believer that a cleanser is one of the most important steps in my skincare routine. I know a lot of people think that it is less important because it is washed off so quickly, and while I think the logic behind that is sound, my personal experience says otherwise. Perhaps it is just me, but I find that my skin behaves in certain ways with certain cleansers, and though I’ve found success with some serums and creams, ultimately a cleanser is the main factor in whether or not my skin is clear or spotty.

My skin is acne prone and fluctuates between a stack of dry patches and oily forehead, to dehydrated and flaky all over. I prefer not to use foaming cleansers as I find they strip moisture from my skin, and so favour cream, balm or gel based cleansers in general. When this Soap & Glory Fab Pore Hot Cloth Cleanser* hit my desk, I was intrigued at the thought of a deep pore clean in a light cream texture, as previously I’d only ever used a muslin cloth with a thicker style balm (eg. Antipodes Grapeseed Butter) Here is what Soap & Glory have to say about it:
A natural all-in-one cleanse, polish & skin-smoothing cream.
It cleans, it smoothes, it melts away makeup. A 3-in-1, concentrated, deep-purifying formula with a natural blend of revitalising aromatic essential oils for an all round FAB PORE complexion.
Suitable for all skin types (Especially those seeking natural alternatives for their skincare regime)
100ml for $27.95


The first step in my nightly routine is to remove my eye makeup with my Maybelline City Rescue Total Clean remover, and precleanse with Dermalogica Precleanse. Once I’m in the shower I apply a splodge of Fab Pore all over my face, work it into my skin and leave it on for a little, as suggested by Soap & Glory. I then either use the thin and gentle muslin cloth provided, or simply warm water to remove the light cream from my face. It doesn’t dry out my skin at all, but leaves it soft and completely free of residue, and the essential oil based scent is light and not bothersome.


Though in the past I have used targeted acne cleansers (some of which were too harsh and did not improve my skin!) I found the most success with this tube of glory. Hormonal break outs aside, this kept my skin spot free and feeling better than ever before, which was something that both surprised and delighted me! Being a beauty blogger, I will of course trial other cleansers in order to keep the reviews coming (I am already onto a new product as I type!) but I feel confident when I say that this is a cleanser I will repurchase in the future, and continue to use happily.
Soap & Glory Fab Pore Hot Cloth Cleanser retails for $27.95 and is available from Kit Cosmetics.

*Provided for consideration, but as always my thoughts are my own. Honesty, always.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

A Fragrance Wardrobe

I have a plethora of scents in my possession, but I’ve taken to keeping a select handful on my desk to help me use them up faster. I swap some of these out and I do still use scents from the rest of my ridiculous collection, but these are the ones that have taken their place on the desk shelf lately!

I spoke at length about my issues with Lancome Tresor in Love, and I’m hoping to use a lot of this bottle before our next anniversary rolls around, to increase my chances of getting a new bottle of juice. This is a fruity rose scent, with notes of nectarine, bergamot, peach and Turkish rose, and I tend to wear it at night when we go out for coffee.

A recent launch from one of my favourite brands, Illamasqua Freak* is definitely a unique part of my scent collecton and unlike anything else I own.  It smells spicy and rich to me, and I tend to wear it when it is cold out and I feel quite tough and brave. I had to look up the notes for this, and they include opium flower, poison hemlock and frankincense. I have personally smelt this on quite a few people and it is definitely one you have to try on in store to judge, as it changes drastically depending on your skin.

Balenciaga Paris*, a powdery floral scent with notes of violet, cedar and carnation, is one of the most luxurious scents in my stash. I find this stays quite close to my skin when I wear it, and I use it sparingly as it is a travel sized sample gifted to me from the Balenciaga PR. I adore the bottle and have been hoping to add a full size Balenciaga to my collection once I use up a few more bottles, and this is a contender for that top spot.

Tucked away in the back in that image is a gorgeous Jo Malone bag filled with a teensy bottle of Orange Blossom* and a body cream in another scent, that I have been squirrelling away since before I began beauty blogging a few years ago. I received this in a Primped goody bag, the very first bag of that kind that I had ever received. I absolutely adore both the aesthetic and the scents from Jo Malone, and know that when I begin full time work my Jo Malone collection will grow from this small bottle up.

So Hooked on Carmella from Benefit is one of the stronger scents in my collection, and was purchased from a blog sale a while back.  Classified as an oriental floral, this contains notes of grapefruit, lemon, rhubarb, peony, sandalwood, amber and vanilla. Most of these notes are my very favourites, and though I can’t wear this scent around my sensitive-nosed Mumma Bovary, I do pop it on quite often on days when I know I won’t see her.

Last but not at all least is my all-time favourite fragrance, and the one I hope to wear for the rest of my days here on earth. Guerlain’s Champs Elysees is a fruity-floral that contains notes of mimosa, rose almond and forest fruits, but most of all it smells like me!  I feel strong, powerful and intelligent when I wear this, like I am the woman I want to be.


Isn’t it amazing how fragrances can make you feel certain things?

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

On Rotation: March 2013

Saw this on Eat Paint Sniff Glue (one of my favourites!) and I knew I had to follow her lead!

Skin Care

Makeup Remover: Dermalogica Precleanse*

Cleanser: Soap & Glory Fab Pore Hot Cloth Cleanser*

Exfoliant: Dermalogica Skin Prep Scrub*

Toner/Facial Spray: Uriage Thermal Spray*

Moisturiser: Cosmecology Hydra Skin*

Night Treatment: La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo

Spot Treatment: Mario Badescu Buffering Lotion / Mario Badescu Drying Lotion

Eye Cream: Kiehls Midnight Recovery Eye

Mask: Queen Helene Mint Julip / The Jojoba Company Botanical Hydrating Mask*

Lip Balm: La Roche Posay Ceralip / Lip Smackers Kool Aid in Strawberry & Kiwi

Body Care:

Hand Cream: The Jojoba Company Lemon & Coconut*  

Body Scrub: Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub*

Shower Gel/Cream/Lotion: Bodycology Sweet Petal / Soap & Glory Clean on Me

Soap: -

Body Lotion: Dove Body Milk* / Haus of Gloi Twice is Nice Pumpkin Butter

Perfume: Avon Bond Girl / Ralph Lauren Pony #2

Candle: Dusk Chocolate Caramel (Easter collection)

Hair Care

Shampoo: Kérastase Cristalliste Bain Cristal Epais*

Conditioner: Kérastase Cristalliste Lait Cristal*

Treatment: Kérastase Cristalliste Lumiere Liquide* / Organix Argan Oil*

Shine Spray: -

Hair Spray: L’Oreal Elnet Hair Spray*

Leave In Conditioner: -

Styling Product: Batiste Boho Dry Shampoo


Base: Face of Australia Face Base / Illamasqua Skin Base / YSL Touche Eclat*

Eyes: MAC Painterly Paint Pot / Maybelline Bad to the Bronze Color Tattoo / MAC Coquette eyeshadow / Covergirl Clump Crusher mascara

Lips: Maybelline Juicy Bubblegum lipstick / Face of Australia Peaches & Cream / essence Me & My Icecream

Cheeks: Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Exposed / Chanel JC Pink Explosion / MAC Cream Soda
Nails: L'Oreal Color Riche Luxembourg Garden

*Provided for consideration. Honesty, always.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Willow for Dermalogica

There isn’t much I love more than beauty products and dreaming about designer brands, so as you can imagine I get quite excited when the two combine. At a recent launch event I was introduced to the brand new gift with purchase that Dermalogica have set up with fashion house Willow for the month of April, and I was really impressed with the quality of the goods! Usually GWP’s come in a great makeup bag, but this is the first I have come across that include a genuine, buttery leather clutch with some travel sized samples tucked inside. I love structured bags like this one, I definitely prefer it to a long line clutch so I was elated to take one of these designer bags home with me on the day. This clutch is yours with any Dermalogica purchase over $100, and being a fan of a stack of Dermalogica products I thought I would tell you which ones are the best!
First off, you NEED the Precleanse! Originally reviewed here , this is a runny oil substance that whisks away makeup and prepares your face for your cleanser. I am addicted to this and find it super hard to cleanse without it now that I’m hooked. Another product I love is the Skin Prep Scrub and the Daily Microfoliant. If you prefer physical scrubs, Skin Prep is the way to go as it is chunky but still doesn’t aggravate the skin. Those who love chemical/fruit enzyme based exfoliants should go for the microfoliant, which is a powder that you work into a paste and it eats away at the dead skin cells for you. Both are great and I alternate them depending on which I can be bothered reaching for, so they are great options to get you on your way to earning this amazing gift with purchase.

Now mark your diaries, Aussie ladies! To celebrate the exciting collaboration, Dermalogica are holding an event with champagne, canapes and free on-the-spot treatments in the cities of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. I’ve popped the details and invitation below, and will hopefully be making my way down to the Melbourne launch to play with some new Dermalogica products and perhaps get my face mapped!

Let me know what YOUR favourite Dermalogica product is in the comments below, or tell me about a product you’ve tried from the brand. Are you planning on heading down to see the amazing Willow clutch in person?

*I was a guest of PR for the Dermalogica event and was gifted the clutch and travel sized products while there. Honesty, always.

Friday, April 5, 2013

March Favourites

March was a hectic month for me as I began my post graduate degree at university. All of a sudden it all feels real and the pressure is immense, but if anything it made me appreciate the stars in my beauty stash more than ever as I loved relaxing and enjoying them throughout the month.
I did play around with my eye shadows quite a bit this month, I loved a heap of deep chocolate shades (as seen in this look!) I used the Bad to the Bronze Maybelline Color Tattoo as a base quite often, and also on its own if I was feeling lazy. I couldn’t tear myself away from the Australis Curve Ink eyeliner*, jet black, long lasting and goes well with my Covergirl Clump Crusher mascara. I’m still in the habit of using YSL Touche Eclat No.2* under my eyes to brighten, it covers up late nights and energy drink fuelled bad behaviour really well!
Pink lips were it and a bit this month, seriously couldn’t get enough of the hot new Face of Australia shade Peaches & Cream, which isn’t very well named but by goodness it is probably the best shade they have ever released. As soon as I saw it on the shelf at Priceline I was like a moth to flame, and even Mumma Bovary said “Oh that is YOUR colour!” In the basket it went, and I’ve been wearing it a lot this month. Maybelline Juicy Bubblegum is another great pink that I find easy to wear, and since I’ve been favouring a glossy look I've been teaming it with one of my all-time favourite glosses, essence Me & My Ice Cream. Another obsession that I’ve been indulging in is a flashback to my younger days, where lip smackers filled my school dress pockets and I was never without one. This Strawberry/Kiwi Kool Aid scent is so damn good, and it reminds me of a scent from my childhood but I just can’t put a finger on what it is. Regardless, I’ve been loving these lip products silly this month.
The Face of Australia Face Base primer has crept back into my daily routine and I don’t really know why I stopped using it. Feels just like a moisturiser rather than a velvety finish primer, and from blog posts I’ve read it is actually the Napoleon Perdis primer repackaged and much cheaper! Surprisingly my most worn and most loved blush for March was Cream Soda from the MAC Archie’s Girl collection. Chris bought me this as I was upset about not being able to find Prom Princess (ended up getting it later) and I’ve worn this one more than PP! Another product that has jumped back into my daily routine is the grungy looking Prestige brow gel, I’d forgotten how much of a difference you can make to your face just by grooming your brows well!
Now that my brain is focused on university and all the joys that come along with it, I neglected to include my Dove Body Milk for Dry Skin* and the object of my nail polish love affair. L’Oreal Color Riche in Luxembourg Garden* has truly stolen my heart, it isn’t often that I reapply the same colour time after time but I have been aching to reapply this every single time I do my nails.
What would you love to try from this lot of favourites? What pink lip product do you swear by?
*Marked products were provided for consideration. Honesty, always.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

March Empties

Another month, another lot of empties!

The Hair

Garnier Fructis Anti-Dandruff Shampoo ‘Classic’
A staple in my shower, this is pretty much the only shampoo that my scalp will tolerate. Trialling a new fancy brand right now, fingers crossed all goes well but I will always return to this lovely blue bottle.

L’Oreal Elvive Total Repair Restoring Crème Conditioner
Don’t remember too much about this sample sachet, but I don’t remember disliking it so that is a plus.

The Body

Haus of Gloi Twice is Nice Pumpkin Butter
Haul post here! HoG scents are to die for, and this is one of my favourites from the permanent line. I like the sample sized tubs as I get to dabble in a few scents, and this is one I will repurchase later on.

Weleda Citrus Hydrating Body Lotion*
Reviewed here, this was a great moisturising lotion and I adored the tangy scent!

The Body Shop Vineyard Peach Cream Body Scrub*
Reviewed here. A gentle and moisturising scrub, this smelt nice and actually persuaded me to like the gentle scrub side of the spectrum. Straight up peach scent, delish!

The Rest

Urban Rituelle Cotton Candy Petite Parfum
Reviewed here. Seriously, this couldn’t be any better (okay, if it were longer lasting it might be better) Introduced as a PR sample, this particular vial was a repurchase and I am now elated that Urban Rituelle brought this into 100ml bottle form. Hallelujah! Sweet and sugary, this is one of my very favourite perfumes.

Maybelline Dream Matte Powder
I have gone through so many of these, it really is the best powder I’ve come across. Am trialling other brands right now and missing this so much, am staring forlornly at my sealed backup and trying to stay strong and use up others first. Beauty blogger problems!

How much did you use up in March?

*Marked items were provided for consideration. Honesty,always.

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