30 September, 2011

Haul post: MAC, Estee Lauder & Butter London

**Scheduled post**

Thanks to Hubby this was my second Catch of The Day haul in about a month!  COTD held yet another cosmetics sale so I ordered these bits and pieces:   Butter London polish (HRH), MAC Slimshine lipstick (Gentle Simmer) and an Estee Lauder Five Color Eyeshadow Palette (Surreal Violet).

I can't help myself, I just love purple so this pretty palette was impossible to resist at one-third the retail price ($30AUD compared to the usual $90AUD for EL palettes!).   Here's a close up of the colours plus the obligatory swatches of these and and MAC's Slimshine lippy.  I know the Slimshines have been discontinued which is a pity :(

Finally a tape swatch of HRH, my second Butter London polish - still haven't worn No More Waity Katy yet... Hmmm. HRH is a beautifully rich purple with loads of shimmer.  My kind of colour. Just gorgeous!

That's all for now.

Vita  :)

27 September, 2011

From the vault: Liquid Metal - Ir

**Scheduled post**

Here are some old nail pictures of a very old nail polish of mine.  I bought this bottle of Liquid Metal nail polish years ago - so long ago that I can't exactly remember where I bought it.   I looked up the the definition of the shade name "Ir" thinking it was an abbreviation for gold and it is apparently "...a metallic element of platinum group..."  Anyway to my eye Ir is a yellow gold metallic polish.

 Indoors with flash

I love wearing this shade on my toes in summer.

Thanks for looking.

Vita :)

24 September, 2011



I'm off for a few weeks vacation.  I'll try and put up a few scheduled posts before I go but normal posting will resume after Monday 10th October.

Here's where I'll be...

...Somewhere on the beach at Port Douglas.
Speak to you all again soon!

Vita :)

23 September, 2011

What my nails wore to work: OPI - Lighten Up, You're Two Pence!

I made a random selection and wore one of my old, HTF gems from OPI this week.

Lighten Up, You're Two Pence! is from OPI's British collection released for the 2003 Fall/Winter season.  Somehow I think I've had this bottle lurking in my collection from way back then too!  This is the old black label formula with the skinny brush so it was a little tricky to apply.  It's a very loud and shameless coppery burnt orange with a shimmery finish.  I guess it's supposed to be reminiscent of copper pennies.  Not for the faint-hearted or orange-phobic!

I know this is a very autumnal colour but I had fun wearing it this week and being at odds with the season...

 Outdoors shade

 Full sun


What do you think?  Like or loathe?

Until next time.

Vita :)

22 September, 2011

REVIEW: Rediscovering The Body Shop

I've always loved going into The Body Shop for my fix of scented body butters, their colourful fruit scented soaps and they've been one of my go-to destinations for gift packs for birthdays and holidays.

I must admit I hadn't been though those green doors for the last few years and it's only recently I've rediscovered them through my obsession with skin whitening products.  I'm on an ongoing mission to minimise my facial pigmentation from too many years of sun exposure and while I've been loving the Shiseido White Lucent range my wallet hasn't been so much of late.  So, when I saw The Body Shop had brought out their own Moisture White range (with a Japanese key ingredient)  at a fraction of the price of my beloved Shiseido I was keen to try it out.  Of course I've bought a few extra things as well along the way...

L - R:  Moisture White range* -
Shiso Whitening Moisture Milk (50ml)
Foaming Facial Wash (150ml)
Shiso Whitening Serum (30ml)
*(Plus a few other random buys!)
I've been using the Moisture White range for over a month now and I'm happy with the overall performance as well as the price.

Price:  Very kind to my wallet these three products total just under $140AUD which is less than the cost of Shiseido's serum alone (around $167AUD). 

Ingredients: The key ingredients are Japanese Shiso, Vitamin C, Liquorice and Aloe Vera.  According to The Body Shop's leaflet Shiso,Vitamin C and the Liquorice herb are effective in reducing melanin activation under the skin and preventing excessive pigmentation and uneven skin tone.  Aloe Vera is included in the formula to moisturise and soothe the skin.

How do these products feel? The facial wash is a light airy foam which becomes a creamy froth when mixed with water and my skin feels clean, not tight when rinsed off. The serum feels a bit sticky in on my skin when I first apply it and it has a slightly unusual 'natural' fragrance (I know - What does that mean?  I had trouble describing the fragrance) but it absorbs quite quickly and the fragrance fades away prior to applying  moisturiser.  The moisturiser itself is milky and light and absorbs very quickly leaving my skin feeling soft without any greasiness or shine.

Do they work?  My pigmentation is definitely no worse than it was.  Without special dermatological testing (and I'm not a dermatologist!) I can't say how much it's reduced my pigmentation.  I can say I've noticed the brown blotch on my forehead I was previously very aware of is now not as obvious so that's a win for me.  This range is moisturising enough for my skin type (normal/sensitive) and doesn't irritate as some whitening products can.

Packaging:  These are all plastic pump packs which deliver the exact amount needed for one application.  No excuse to waste product! I am a bit annoyed with the different sized bottles and I've already managed to finish my first serum in just over a month because of the 30ml total volume.

My random buys -
Vanilla perfume oil (15ml)
Eye colour (40 Baby pink - see swatch below)

Vanilla perfume oil (15ml) - Boo! These old favourites have been discontinued and I'm the last to know!  I bought this as a little something to carry in my purse and to take away with me on vacation.  I love gourmand scents like vanilla so I had to have it before it disappeared forever.

Eye colour (40 Baby Pink) - This is the first Body Shop eyeshadow I've bought in years and I've been loving it lately.  It has an almost creamy texture, has great pigmentation and stays on all day without a primer.  The price is reasonable too at $19.95AUD.  (See my recent EOTD using this soft pink here).

Do you have a favourite product from The Body Shop? 

That's all for now.

Vita :)

21 September, 2011

China Glaze: For Audrey + Essence: Make Me Holo top coat

Hello, here's another quick post on layering  -

I love China Glaze's For Audrey (see my original post here) as a creme polish but I wanted to see what it would look like with a subtle shimmer.  One coat of Essence's Make Me Holo top coat added a very subtle blue highlight to the finish:

Indoors natural daylight


I think the top coat added a bit of depth to the mani without taking anything away from the original colour.  What do you think?

That's all for now.

Vita :)

20 September, 2011

Feeling just peachy...

 ...Or at least my makeup collection has lately as spring takes hold in the southern hemisphere.  This spring I've been heavily favouring peach as an alternative to nude - it must be the beauty bloggers' influence I guess! 

So what peach toned products do I have in my personal stash?

Lip colours

Left to right:
  • Mirenesse 3D Forever Gloss (Hello Kitten) - Cute name!  I got this as a freebie with a weekly magazine.  Bright toned peach creme gloss.  Has a slightly orange scent and taste.  
  • Revlon Creme Gloss (060 Peachy Sheen) - Deeper warm toned peach.  Doesn't look it in the swatch but this gloss is quite thick and heavily pigmented.  Unfortunately this has been discontinued.
  • Avon Glosswear Silky Shine Lipstick (peach silk) - Super shiny, pale "60's mod" peach.  Great understated lip colour to pair with a smoky eye. 
  • L'Oreal Nutrishine (pretty peach) - I love this pink/peach hybrid glossy lipbalm. It's a very feminine semi-sheer tone that gives my lips a pretty boost of colour and shine.
  • Revlon Colorburst Lipstick (075 Peach) - Mid-toned peach lipstick with a very subtle shimmer.  Feels light wearing on my lips.


Left to right:
  • b collection by bloom cheek tint (yarra valley) - This looks almost neon in the swatch but this cream blends beautifully to give me a subtle peachy glow. 
  • BYS powder blusher (coral) - Super soft and richly pigmented.  I only need a little bit of this blush brushed onto my cheeks.

Nail colours
Left to right:
  • Zoya (Lulu) - Milky translucent creme. Soft and subtle - love this one!
  • Revlon (229 Demure) - Pink/peach creme.
  • Essence (What Do U Think?) - Warm orange/peach with a subtle shimmer
  • L'Oreal (Beach Bum) - Shimmery peach - I can see myself wearing this on my toes and strolling along the beach - love this one too!

Has peach crept into your makeup bag this spring?

Until my next post.

Vita :)

19 September, 2011

Blingtastic silver glitter: a-england - Merlin

Here's another polish I won from the lovely Kristy of The Polish Haven.

This is the totally glitterific Merlin from a-england.  This polish is simply loads of fine silver glitter in a clear base.  Two coats and my nails are wearing silver bling.  Honestly, I could have got away with a single coat of this densely packed glitter.  I'm in love with this mani!


Full sun

Even gorgeous in the shade...

This manicure wore like armour on my nails and didn't budge until I took it off.  

Until next time.

Vita :)

18 September, 2011

EOTD: Pink + Taupe shimmer

Here's one of my favourite daytime looks I've been sporting for spring.

I've recently rediscovered my love for taupe eyeshadow as it softly accents my eyes and easily combines with most highlight colours.  I've been particularly loving it combined with a shimmery pink highlight lately:

For this look I used:
  • The Body Shop eye colour 40 (baby pink shimmer) brushed all over lid
  • Rimmel Glam'Eyes Backstage (taupe shimmer) blended in crease
  • MAC Shroom (satin ivory) on browbone
  • MAC Duck Powerpoint eye pencil on outer upper lash line
  • Christian Dior Diorshow mascara (black on upper lashes only)
  • Avon Glimmersticks Blonde brow definer pencil on brows
Note I didn't wear an eye primer and these eyeshadows have all held up to a full day of wear without fading or creasing.

I've been wearing this look to the office over the past few days.   What do you think?

That's all for now.

Vita :)

17 September, 2011

What my nails wore to work: Rimmel Lasting Finish - Electric!

I decided to give all the neutrals and murky colours the flick last week and moved onto something more up my alley - a bright creme!

I chose one of my favourite colours:  a hot purple leaning fuschia by Rimmel, aptly named Electric!.  After my last disaster with Rimmel's 60 seconds polish (read here) I decided to give their Lasting Finish formula a try to see how it compares.  This polish was a bit thick and streaky on application and needed two coats plus top coat to even up the finish.  The good news was this polish actually dried without any dents and the colour was fantastic and so vibrant!  I received lots of compliments on this polish.  I'll definitely wear it again.


Outdoors shade

What's your go-to bright nail polish shade?

Until my next post.

Vita :)

16 September, 2011

Layering: Essence Space Queen + Essence Gold Rush

Hello :)  This is a quickie post for the end of the week.

 I painted two coats of Essence's Space Queen to turn my weekday Gold Rush mani (here) into something more fun for last weekend.  Space Queen is a super cute and girly combination of pastel rainbow glitter suspended in a translucent baby pink base.  It's really pretty and I don't think these artificially lit pictures quite do it justice but here are some anyway:


Unfortunately I couldn't get any sunlit pics when I wore this - I guess I'll have to wear this again!

Have a wonderful weekend.

Vita :)

15 September, 2011

REVIEW: OPI Avoplex High-Intensity Hand & Nail Cream

Here's my review of the latest hand cream taking up residence in my handbag...

I found this tube of OPI's Avoplex High-Intensity Hand & Nail Cream lurking in one of my David Jones beauty tote bags.  As you can see in the picture of the back of my hand this is a fairly rich cream.  It feels really luxurious when first applied, but I don't find it greasy in the slightest as it absorbs quite quickly leaving me with soft hands and moisturised cuticles. 

The ingredients in this hand cream include Shea butter, Cocoa Seed butter, and Almond butter and the signature ingredients are "...OPI's Advanced Avocado Lipid Complex – a combination of deep-penetrating, skin-loving antioxidants; phospholipids, the biological building blocks of skin; vitamins A, B1, B2, D, and E; essential fatty acids; and Avocado Oil, which closely resembles the skin’s own natural oils..."

Random fact:  Avoplex High-Intensity Hand & Nail Cream actually won the award for best hand cream in the 2009 Australian Beauty Awards.

  • Rich, deeply moisturising formula
  • Non-greasy and absorbs quickly
  • Moisturises hands, nails and cuticles
  • Formula doesn't include any mineral oils so won't affect or lift your nail polish (good for polish lovers like me!)
  • Soft, subtle fragrance
  • Doesn't irritate my sensitive skin
  • Price - 50ml tube costs $19.95AUD  (The 120ml tube is better value at $29.95AUD).

Would I buy this again?
Yes.  I like the rich formula and I'm a fan of anything that contains Shea butter.

Do you have a favourite luxury hand cream?

Thanks for reading.

Vita :)

14 September, 2011

Layering: Essence - Make Me Holo top coat

Essence's Make Me Holo top coat is my latest purchase from their recently released Black and White collection.   As soon as I got it I decided to play, layering it over my Love & Beauty Fuschia mani from my previous post.

Make Me Holo is not a holographic but a translucent milky polish with a soft blue undertone and it reminds me of moonstone.  One coat of this turned my red creme mani into a shimmery blurple-pink.  This combination takes me back to my childhood:

Full sun


Indoors natural light

I think Make Me Holo would look fab over a blue base!

For Australian readers the Black and White range is available at selected Target stores in NSW and Victoria.  Check out Essence Au on Facebook for location details.

That's all for now.

Vita :)

13 September, 2011

Love & Beauty: Fuschia (or is it red??)

Enough of the grey, here's something a bit more bright and cheerful (and a little deceptive in its name).

Love & Beauty's Fuschia is one of those polish shades that differs significantly from bottle to nail.  Although it looked like a deep purple fuschia in the bottle, it dried down to a deep beetroot red  on my nails.  It disappointed me a bit because I really loved the bottle colour.  Shame.

Full sun - you can see the difference here


So, Fuschia isn't really fuschia at all but it's quite a respectable red.

Have you ever had this disappointment with a nail polish colour that didn't exactly live up to its look in the bottle?

Until next time.

Vita :)

12 September, 2011

OPI: Brand New Skates

Here's an old limited edition OPI I wore over the weekend.  I bought Brand New Skates in a Singapore OPI store in 2008.  This shade is from OPI's Holiday in Toyland collection launched for that year's holiday season.  One of my favourite glass flecked reds (Don't Toy with Me) also came from that collection - Note to self:  swatch this one soon!

Anyway, I chose this to wear to match the dreary wintry weather which continues to linger into our spring.  Brand New Skates is a semi-sheer gunmetal grey polish with a subtle mix of gold and silver microglitter.  The colour actually makes me think of the graphite in pencils so I keep wanting to call it graphite - no connection to the Chanel shade whatsoever,  I just think it would be a good fit for this polish.  Because of the sheerer than normal formula I needed to apply three coats for full opacity, but I was happy with the final result:

Outdoors sun



I found this shade to be paradoxically dull and interesting at the same time.  What do you think?

That's all for now.

Vita :)

11 September, 2011

Natio warehouse megahaul + swatches (Pic heavy)

Two weekends ago I went on my sis-in-law's annual shopping tour.  This involves cramming around 40 hyped up, cashed up women into one bus, making 10 scheduled stops at factory outlets.  One of the stops was the Natio cosmetics and skin care outlet.  With prices starting at $2AUD I did some major hauling!  Here's all of the collective booty:

Hand care products

HandsWell Gift Pack (contains Wellness hand cream (SPF 15), Wellness hand wash and a wooden nail brush).  I bought this pack because I'm already a fan of the Wellness hand cream and got the hand wash and nail brush for just a few extra dollars.

Lavender and Rosemary Hand and Nail Cream - yet another hand cream for this particular hand cream addict to try.  My hands are needing all the pampering they can get at the moment!

Mineral lip gloss pack
I bought this pack for the kitschy pink lame pouch as much as anything.  Won't lose that in my handbag!  I've not tried Natio's mineral glosses and the colours looked soft and wearable as the below swatches confirm.  These are very natural neutral shades for everyday wear.  They have a faint naturally fruity scent as they contain sweet orange oil.
L - R:
Caramel, Grape, Lily

Lipstick, balm and more gloss
L - R (and swatched in order below):
Australia lipstick - Drama
Tinted lip balm - Kiss Me
Ultra Shiny Fruit Gloss - Melon

It seems I was in a bit of a pink mood when I chose these!

Australia lipstick - I remember this was a limited edition collection launched at the same time the movie "Australia" came out a few years ago (remember that one with Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman?  I won't go into any movie reviews here...).  The lipstick isn't very pigmented and is a lot lighter than appears in the tube.  Still not bad for two or three bucks and I can slick this one on without the use of a mirror - funnily enough the lipstick lid actually has a mirror on one side!

Tinted lip balm - Yet another lip balm to add to my "balmy army".  Another $2 special.  This balm contains jojoba, vitamin E, almond and peppermint oils so it has that faint minty scent and cooling sensation on the lips.

Ultra shiny fruit gloss - You can see how wet this gloss is in the above swatch.  It tastes a bit sweet, and feels smooth on the lips without being too sticky.  Contains vitamin E, shea butter, jojoba and avocado oil.

Eye, cheek and nail colours

Sparkle Dust eye palette - I bought this palette on a leap of faith, not expecting much at all.  I thought I was going to get some anaemic pastel colours. Boy, how wrong I was.  This was my star purchase!  The swatches below were done on bare skin and you can see the wonderful jewel colours and the great pigmentation:

Nail Colour (Mello) - Of course I had to buy more nail polish, even in soft, safe shades.  This lovely peachy pink polish (see tape swatch below) has obviously been discontinued.  Don't know why - I think this definitely has a place in my spring/summer wardrobe.  Another $2 bargain in my opinion!

Mineral Blusher - This doesn't have a shade name so perhaps it was the only shade? You can see from the swatch it's a shimmery pink.  I think it'll wear well for summery evenings.

Enough hauling for now...Even as I type those words I can tell you there's still more to come courtesy of another Catch Of The Day haul on it's way to me over the next few weeks...Beauty blogging is so bad for my wallet - but still so much fun!

Until next time.

Vita :)
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