22 April, 2014

L'Oreal: Flaming Lilac

Hello again!
My mini vacation/hiatus is over and I'm easing back in to the blogging routine with a quick nail swatch post before I launch into any detailed product reviews...of which I have a few up my sleeve...
L'Oreal's Flaming Lilac is a vibrant neon lilac from their Color Riche Neons collection released late 2013.  This shade is bordering on Radiant Orchid for me with its distinctly pink-purple hue - and that makes it instant love for me!  Flaming Lilac was very nearly a one-coater and was easily applied with the broad flattened brush. 

All pictures taken in cloudy conditions
Thanks for looking as always!

09 April, 2014

Time for a vacation...

Hi again!  Posting twice in one day must be an all-time record for me!
After the flurry of posts I thought I'd let you know as of the 10th of April (tomorrow down here) I'll be taking a little break because we're heading up to the Gold Coast in Queensland for a family getaway. Things might be quiet around here for the next couple of weeks depending on little things like wifi availability and how busy (or lazy) we are.  Normal posting will resume from 19th of April.
Hopefully the weather will be a little something like this:
Speak to you all soon!

OPI: Where Did Suzi's Man-Go?

I'm still in the middle of my orange/tangerine kick so Where Did Suzi's Man-Go? is right up my alley...

This juicy looking tangerine polish is another vibrant shade from OPI's current Brazil Collection, where they cheekily describe this cream shade as "mango smoothie" - Yes, I'll agree with that too, definitely when viewed in the full glare of the sun! This was another two-coater, which applied beautifully and was my choice to cheer up the working week.  This is probably the most trans-seasonal of the vibrant shades I've tried from the collection as I think it works well for spring, summer and autumn.

And that's it for my current round of OPI Brazil swatches.
 Which was your favourite?
(This product was provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)

08 April, 2014

OPI: Kiss Me I'm Brazilian

I'm back in my comfort zone with my second Brazil collection manicure - pink!
Kiss Me I'm Brazilian is another of the vivid hues from the Brazil collection and OPI describes it as a "warm luscious pink".  I describe it in my own long-winded way as a warm neon pastel pink cream with a slight leaning to coral - very vibrant and pretty at the same time.  Don't be fooled by this polish in the bottle because it dries down a full shade darker (and brighter). It's definitely a statement pink, perfect for summery fingers and toes or for delaying the inevitable late autumn mood we're going to be creeping into soon down here in Melbourne.  Two coats were enough to do the job this time for a smooth creamy coverage.
All pictures taken in indirect daylight:
Thanks for looking!
 (This product was provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)

07 April, 2014

OPI: I Just Can't Cope-Acabana

I have a few selections from OPI's recently released Brazil collection to post and I thought I'd get the most outrageous one out there first. I guess yellow isn't outrageous to some of you but if you know me you'll realize it's outside of my colour comfort zone.  Still - I keep an open mind and my son loves yellow so I'm doing it!
Whew! What a name for a nail polish shade is I Just Can't Cope-Acabana! OPI are as quirky and creative as always with their shade names especially when they come out with their more quirky colours.  IJCA is a quirky colour alright - it's a bright and very uplifting "sunshine yellow" as described by OPI themselves and I can't really top that.  Because this is a pastel cream I found I needed 3 coats of colour for perfect coverage but with more careful application I think I could have got away with the usual 2. 

What do you think about yellow nails? Yay or nay?
 (This product was provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)

06 April, 2014

REVIEW: Palmer's Purifying Mask

You know up until recently I hadn't used a clay mask for years so my memories of clay masks were along the lines of thick, sometimes smelly, cakey masks which cracked on my skin, were hell to remove and left my skin feeling dried out. I'm happy to say Palmer's Purifying Mask was a revelation then - times have obviously changed for the better!  Palmer's Purifying Mask is suitable for all skin types and claims to "draw out impurities, tighten and cool" the skin.
 Ingredients list:
Water, Kaolin, Glycereth-26, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Cyclotetrasiloane, Isopropyl Myristate, Titanium Dioxide, Bentonite, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-20, Magnesium Aluminium Silicate, Carrageenan, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Prunus Amydalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Panthenol, Polymide-1, Disodium EDTA, Silica, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Quaternium-15, Tocopheryl Acetate, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Root Extract, Menthol, Propylene Glycol, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Hydrolyzed Milk Protein, Lactose, Phenoxyethanol Methylisothazolinone, Glycerin, Steareth-20, Fragrance (Parfum), Chrysin, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Bultyphenyl Methylpropional.

Palmer's Australia's website explains the key ingredients in plain English:

Sweet Almond Oil
A non-greasy, super moisturizing, emollient extracted from the kernel of Almond seeds. Sweet Almond Oil is rich in Vitamins B1, B6, B2 and E, as well as Omega-9 and Omega-6 fatty acids. The lightweight oil is easily absorbed into the skin and its antimicrobial properties help reduce the chances of scarring and markings on skin.

Shea Butter
Shea Butter is ideal for sensitive skin due to its naturally high vitamin content (including A, E and F). It has the ability to absorb quickly into the skin, soothing irritation and providing on-going nourishment. Shea Butter acts as a natural anti-inflammatory agent which makes it effective in addressing dry skin & irritation. The high moisture content helps diminish discoloration, wrinkles and loss of elasticity.

Vitamin E
Vitamin E is contained in all Palmer's products. This top antioxidant enhances the protective function of skin and decreases the appearance of lines, wrinkles and scars by keeping cells hydrated.

Cocoa Butter
Cocoa Butter addresses skin concerns such as roughness, loss of elasticity, scars and dryness. Cocoa Butter is an all natural skin conditioning plant extract loaded with essential fatty acids. It softens and protects by diminishing water loss - keeping skin hydrated and supple.

Kaolin Clay
A natural Chinese clay that gently absorbs oil on the surface of skin and helps clear breakouts. Kaolin Clay gently dries on the surface of the skin to deep clean and draw out impurities.

My impressions:
As soon as I squeezed the mask out of the tube I noticed the fine, rather rich creamy texture.  It seems more of a thick enriching cream than a clay mask at first glance:

As you can see below there's no grittiness at all and the mask glides smoothly onto the skin.  I applied a thin layer to my face and it spread very easily, feeling very creamy. 

Freshly applied:
Within two minutes as the mask started to dry I noticed an intense cooling effect on my skin - kind of like that intense cooling sensation you get when you suck on a strong mint - and once that subsided I could feel the mask firming my skin.  The pleasant white lily/cocoa scent isn't distracting at all and became apparent as the mask dried.

After 10 minutes:

Finally once the mask was dry I was relieved not to feel any "cracking face" sensation!  Better still the mask was easily removed with a wet face cloth - it just dissolved away and left my skin feeling super cleansed.  I noticed my skin looked refined immediately afterward - my pores were reduced, my skin felt softer and plumped and looked more radiant somehow.  I'd actually noticed this earlier when I did the first patch test on the back of my hand.  The pampered hand was noticeably lighter and softer than the untreated hand. Although I could have applied moisturiser afterward I decided to skip it to see if there was any residual tightness and there wasn't any at all.  Because of the Cocoa Butter and Shea Butter my skin simply felt comfortable and clean.  As I've said before on this blog I've yet to try a Palmer's product I don't like and this is no exception.

Palmer's Purifying Mask is gentle enough to be used up to 3 times a week and at $9.99 for 120g of product is an affordable pamper for my skin.

 Palmer's products are available from Priceline, Chemist Warehouse, Woolworths, Coles, Big W, Target, My Chemist, selected pharmacies & selected IGA stores nationally.

 (This product was provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)

05 April, 2014

Essie: Too Too Hot

Summer's well and truly gone (5 weeks gone) but I needed another hit of bright colour before the warm days become too much of a distant memory.  I know I'll be gravitating towards darker, and more subdued colours soon enough so when I chose a red polish to wear this week I chose Essie's Too Too Hot.
Too Too Hot was released in Essie's 2011 Brazilliant Summer collection and Essie's website describes it as a "sizzling rich red coral".  Against my skin it leans more red than coral but it is the most vibrant summery red which is exactly what I was looking for.  This polish performed better than my previous Essie experience and applied smoothly with no dragging in two coats.

All pictures taken in full sun

Until next time!

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