28 February, 2013

REVIEW: BYS Matte Lipstick

I'm usually posting about BYS polish - and I've been doing a lot of that lately because I gorged myself on it during my vacation - but this time I've been supplied with a few lipsticks from BYS' matte lipstick range to review. 

I've always been wary of matte lipsticks cos I'm old enough to remember the hideous formulas from years past:  cakey, flakey and so horribly drying. I'm not talking about budget brands either!  I remember having to give my parched lips a 'rest & recovery' for a few days after the torture of wearing those old matte lipsticks.  I still shudder over those bad lipstick memories. Seriously.

So - you can tell I have strong opinions about matte lipstick based on scary experience.  It's also been a long time since I've bought a matte lipstick because of that.  It was with that sense of skepticism that I agreed to try these little lipsticks...

BYS Matte Lipstick
(Left to Right:  Reddy Set Go, Disco Diva)

BYS is well known as a budget beauty brand so it's not surprising the lipstick packaging is lightweight plastic.  I like the sleek look of the packaging and that I can see the shade through the clear lid, although I'm a little less keen that the lipstick doesn't retract all the way into the bullet until the lipstick is sufficiently worn down (It bugs me personally cos I don't want to mash up the lippy by clumsily closing the lid - perhaps that's more about me being clumsy?!?). 

The important bit:  After trying both of these shades (each for a full day) I found I actually liked them.  They are very richly pigmented, apply very easily with no dragging, and while Disco Diva felt a little powdery on my lips (Reddy Set Go didn't feel powdery at all), they are not drying at all.  The colour stayed fresh-looking, didn't cake or flake and definitely didn't bleed.  They lasted for hours on my lips and I didn't need a touch up until after lunch.  These little lippies don't have any weird taste or smell either so overall they've won me over. 

The hand swatches below give you a good idea of the pigmentation (check out my Instagram #lippyaday posts for FOTD pics - yikes!).

Left to Right:
Reddy Set Go, Disco Diva

There are 14 shades in the BYS Matte Lipstick range and they retail for $3.95AUD each.  Check out the Fashion Addict website to see the full range of colours (here).

Until next time!

24 February, 2013

China Glaze: Swanky Silk

Hello :)

I hope you like the changes around here - my little self made blog was long overdue for a facelift and finally I have a blog layout I love thanks to the very talented Sharnee!  The colour scheme is completely opposite to what I had before but it reflects my taste a lot more closely and most importantly it's renewed my love for posting. So let that be the segue to this first post in my 'new' blog...

Swanky Silk is the sole shade I have from China Glaze's stunning duochrome New Bohemian collection released last year. It's a shade I find myself drawn to:  rose gold with the slightest green duochrome.  I did find the formula a tad streaky but I'll forgive it because I adored the colour. As it always is with duochromes the effect is more subtle on the nail than in the bottle - Still a very pretty rose gold though and a very versatile shade.



That's it for now!

21 February, 2013

BYS: Clowning Around

I'm posting yet another of my vacation purchases - I've been so excited by all of my buys and can't get around to wearing my way through them quickly enough!  That's what happens when you're obsessed with bright, colourful and sparkly things like this middle-age Ms (Mrs).

BYS have nailed the perfect tangerine with this polish, strangely called Clowning  Around. It's a great summery citrus - bright without crossing over to neon.  I don't have too much else to say here in terms of the colour as it is a straightforward creme so I'll talk about the application:  very smooth, not too stinky and two coats easily provided great coverage.  Wear time was good too and it lasted through a week of typing and the usual weekly routine. 



Until next time!

Vita :)

19 February, 2013

You Beauty: Shade 017

Hello again - I'm struggling to keep up with blogging at the moment because I'm on a health and fitness kick and working out 6 days a week! I need to get the optimum routine going and then it will all come together again blogging-wise etc.  Trouble is I think I'm going to have to haul my sorry butt out of bed earlier in the morning and I'm just not a morning person.  Right - now that ramble's out of the way let's get onto the polish!

Shade 017 is for you if you like grape jelly.  Yes, it's a jelly finish and is the perfect match for grape jelly in a jar.  Of course it also has a generous sprinkling of fine glitter!  The blue and purple glitter complement the base polish perfectly and appear to swim on the nails through the translucence.  It's not terribly summery but sometimes it feels good to mix it up...



That's it for tonight!

Vita :)

18 February, 2013

Latest pan hits...

This post is for those of you who love the sight of a good pan hit!  I know I'm voyeuristic in that way and I have some bizarre fascination for it - I love reading these posts on other blogs.  I'm not doing any particular Project Pan, and I'm not on any bans or low-buys, or no-buys, so it was a bit of a happy coincidence that I've hit pan on so many things at once! It gives me faith that I actually do get my money's worth from at least some of my products...

Clockwise from left they are:

theBalm Sexy Mama anti-shine translucent powder - I've been using this pressed powder for several months - since September last year actually! Not surprisingly there is a huuuuuge dent in this pan!

MAC Shale - A neutral grey-purple crease shade I regularly use for my work day makeup.  It's been going for years and finally I've had the satisfaction of seeing the bottom of the pan.

MAC Phloof! - Now this one I hit pan on surprisingly, disconcertingly quickly - so quickly that I became suspicious.  Suspicious enough to do a comparison swatch instore and it just was not the same animal.  My pan was sadly crumbly in comparison to the silky smooth MAC counter product.  Yes, I bought this online from a discount site and sadly I'm now 99% sure it's a fake! Boo :(

MAC Tempting - This is from a long-gone LE collection and again has lasted me years.  Now, after a thousand crease accents, I can see a tiny bit of pan.  

Essence Cappucino, Please! - Okay, I use this silky neutral beige every, EVERY day!  Damn sure I was going to hit pan here.

So, these are the products I hope to finish some time this year and it's simply because they are the ones I reach for most - my everyday staples.

What are your everyday go-to products?

Vita :)

16 February, 2013

BYS: Pop Princess

Here is a nail polish I can tell you I absolutely, unreservedly looooooooved wearing!

Pop Princess is another polish from BYS and one of the two shades I recently chose from their Mardi Gras collection (see my vacation haul here).  This collection is all about glass flecked goodness and Pop Princess was a standout for me because of its electric pink brightness.  Pop Princess is a 1980's party girl fuschia pink jelly with blue and pink sparkly flecks.  Because of the jelly finish I needed to apply three coats to get sufficient opacity and prevent any dreaded visible nail lines.  Shades like this are very hard to photograph and capture the complexity of but I've tried my best here. 




Enjoy your weekend!

Vita :)

15 February, 2013

Ulta3 glitter mani feat. Twinkle Toes & Over The Rainbow

The weekend's here - TGIF!!! - so here's a weekend-appropriate mani.  Wave goodbye to the working week with some glitter!!

I've layered two coats of Ulta3's silver glitter Twinkle Toes and the multicoloured Over The Rainbow as an extra glittery accent over a cream base (Lime Crime Milky Ways).  I did this a few weeks ago for a bit of  end of week zhushing for my tired manicure.  Quite a cute result, although I think I would loooove to see these toppings over black!




What do you think?

Vita :)

11 February, 2013

Shu Uemura: Karl for Shu Prestigious Bordeaux Eye & Cheek Palette (post Xmas sale purchase)

I've probably said this before - well I know I've been saying it to myself and chastising myself - but I'm so behind with my posting at the moment that some of the products I'm finally getting around to posting are no longer available.  Damn you Limited Editions!!! Oh well, shall we appreciate this post as a bit of eye candy perhaps then??

I'd been eyeing the LE Karl Lagerfeld for Shu Eye & Cheek palettes for a while, and decided they were extremely cute BUT a bit out of my price range.   Of course good friend Ling, renowned for her bird of prey's eye for a bargain, spotted them on sale, and tempted me from afar while I was on holiday... Then of course she offered to make the purchase for me before they were gone forever.  With an offer like that I couldn't/wouldn't refuse!

All of the products in the Mon Shu line bear the cute but edgy image of the Mon Shu girl designed by Karl Lagerfeld in collaboration with Shu Uemura's artistic director Kakuyasu Uchiide.   There were two eye & cheek palettes to choose from:  the more cool green/grey/blue toned Smoky Velvet palette and my choice, the gold and plum toned Prestigious Bordeaux palette.  The colours are quite shimmery and theatrical so I was a little nervous but I guess I'm up for a bit more of a colour challenge these days.

Once you open the palette you get a sense of the wonderful theatrical possibilities inside - I remember how excited I was when I first swatched it in store.  I was initially puzzled by the red shade but this is the cheek colour in the palette.   Anyhow, just look at the cuteness:  the Mon Shu outline in the mirror;  the vibrant colours and textures.  Very photogenic isn't it?...

According to Kakuyasu Uchiide the palette is best used as follows:  "...The...two [right] shades combined help to create a beautiful contour and gradation around the eyes. The left shade in the middle section can be applied on top of it for blending. Although the shades look classic and luxurious at once, the texture is very modern. The glitter shadow in the [left] creates an accent. My recommendation is to apply...[it]in the inner corner of the eyes or lower lash line. The red is meant to be used as blush.".

Top row swatched left to right:
inner highlight, lid highlight/blending shade, contour/liner

Bottom row swatched left to right:
blush, lid/blending shade, contour

I haven't done a full road-test on this yet (I feel like I need an occasion to take it for its first outing) but I can see possibilities for some exotic after dark looks - I love the combination of shimmery blackened purple with sparkly gold!  If there's one drawback with this palette it's the tiny blush pan - a small brush runs the risk of heavy coverage and a larger brush could inadvertently pick up the surrounding shades.  Oh well, I'm well enough enamored with the eyeshadow colours in the palette to make up for that little difficulty.

Overall:  I'm happy with this little LE.

That's it for now.

Vita :)

10 February, 2013

BYS: Diamond Glitter Opal

 A Happy Sunday to you all - I've been pretty busy, but not too busy to squeeze in another nail polish post to end the weekend!

Diamond Glitter Opal has been sitting in my collection for a few months and I rediscovered it when I was doing a recent inventory of my ever growing BYS stash!  It's a soft and icy glittery mix of uniformly fine pale blue, lavender and silver glitter in a rather thick clear base  This polish offers fantastic coverage and I applied a single coat over yesterday's lavender creme base for a rather sparkle-istic result!  You've just got to love a glitter polish that's a one-coater!




Until next time!

Vita :)

09 February, 2013

You Beauty: Shade 004

After my last in your face nail polish post I've turned down the visual "volume" for want of a better word.

I found a new Australian made makeup and nail polish brand called You Beauty when I was away on holiday and I selected a few shades of nail polish to try.  You Beauty is Terry White Chemist's own budget beauty brand so local girls can check out the line next time they drop into their local Terry White!  Shade 004 is a lovely subdued pale lavender blue creme.  It applied smoothly and two coats was sufficient to get adequate coverage. This shade adds to my ever growing collection of pastel cremes...



Enjoy your weekend!

Vita :)

06 February, 2013

Ulta3 Colour Me Minis: Neon Pink

There's nothing like a saturated neon to test my camera - and it very nearly freaked out here!

I was crazy keen to try the neon pink from my Ulta3 Colour Me Minis pack as soon as I saw it.  Because the neon polishes have a tendency to be on the sheer side I applied two coats of Ulta3 neon pink over a white polish base and, well, basically it went "KAPOW!" on my nails. I don't think I've ever worn anything quite so B-R-I-G-H-T!!!! Seriously, is there anything else I can say about this one???  I'll leave it all to the pictures:



Hot enough for you?

Vita :)

03 February, 2013

January's farewelled products (2013 edition)

It's already the beginning of my third year recording and sharing my thoughts on those emptied beauty products!  Last year I was on a mission to use up 100 products - this year I'm just going ease back, relax and not let myself get stressed about the numbers. On a silly, slightly random note, man, I do have an ugly bunch of products this month. It looks like the proverbial pile of rubbish. Not that it's how I feel about the actual products though...

Skin care

1. Neutrogena Night Calming Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes (25 towelettes) - I finished this pack almost a month ago, way back at the start of January.  These towelettes don't just cleanse off the makeup but apparently also have a "unique calming fragrance" to help "unwind" and prepare you for a "good night's sleep". Hmmm...I can't say I noticed anything remarkable in that department! Yes, they did have a pleasant scent but I don't think I felt any more zen than usual.  Besides that the wipes did perform well in the makeup removal department and because they're alchohol-free and felt quite moisturising I didn't need any night cream afterward. Not bad.

2. L'Oreal Youth Code Luminosity Hydrating Day Cream (50ml) - Although called a day cream, this can be used for day and evening to improve and even out skin tone.  I didn't realise how effective this was at correcting my complexion until I went away on holiday and left the jar at home - my cheek pigmentation became noticeably worse when I stopped using it!  I'm currently working my way through my backlog of facial moisturisers (and targeting spot removers) but I can definitely see myself coming back to this cream in future.

3. Face of Australia Purifying Cleansing Wipes (25 wipes) - I bought this pack for the bargain price of $4.  These alchohol-free wipes were as effective as any and non-drying.  A great budget option (other than baby wipes I guess?) and - while they are a little smaller than some of the other wipes on the market - for the price I don't think it matters if I occasionally had to use two to remove heavy makeup.

Hand and body care

4. OPI Original Polish Remover (120ml - 4 fl.oz) - My only criticism of this remover will be the price at $9.90 per bottle, or per month for me. 

5. Crabtree & Evelyn Lavender Age Defying Hand Remedy (100ml - 3.4fl.oz) - Whoa, with a name like that this hand cream promised a lot! I find lavender a very soothing scent so I used this hand cream as my overnight hand treatment.  The texture and appearance actually weirdly reminded me of antiseptic cream but the Vitamin C & E and shea butter formula absorbed quickly and did a great job of moisturising.  And the scent - I've always loved old-fashioned lavender so it was a perfect fragrance for drifting off...

6. Dove Visible Beauty Nourishing Body Lotion (50ml travel size) - I used this little lotion on holiday.  I found it very light and easily, instantly absorbed.  The pleasant fruit scent evaporated away and my sun-dehydrated skin felt silky and not at all greasy.  Because the lotion spread so easily and provided great coverage the small bottle lasted surprisingly well. 


7. Estee Lauder Pleasures Exotic EDT (7ml) -  I'm a bit of a fan of the original Pleasures and the sweet Pleasures Delight spin-off but I wasn't as enamored by the sharp edge to this variation.  Top notes:  Pink Grapefruit & Mango.  Middle notes:  Green leaves, Peony, Hibiscus, Lychee & Cassis.  Base notes:  Sandalwood, Amber & Violet Woods.

That's January 2013 summed up!

Vita :)

02 February, 2013

Latest additions to my polish collection: Part 2!

I told you my vacation nail polish post was going to be in two parts - simply because I'd posted my purchases prematurely before I'd finished my polish hunt! After another too long wait, welcome to part 2!  Mostly pictures, very little words here because I just want to get the post up, up and away (Cliched? Who me??)...

Left to Right:
Ultra Violet
Dahlia Blooms ( My camera didn't accurately capture it but this is a vibrant raspberry pink)

you beauty for nails
Left to Right:
Shade 017 (purple smattered with predominantly blue microglitter)
Shade 004 (pale periwinkle)

Ulta3 neons
These little bottles are not individually labelled but the neon colours are quite accurately captured in this picture.

More swatching to come no doubt -
Let me know what you'd like to see first!

Vita :)
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