30 December, 2014

My 2015 beauty resolutions

This post is one I've been thinking about considerably over the last month or so.  Most of 2014 was devoted to going on a beauty diet to curb my impulse spending on cosmetics so what do I want to get out of 2015?
The beauty diet (basically it was 2 products out for every 1 new product in) did have a lingering effect on me and I've noticed how much more deliberate I've become with my makeup purchases - I must also thank  Sophie, Anissa, and Norlin for joining me and lending their support.  Just yesterday I stalked the higher end beauty counters for sale bargains and I walked away with nothing! I'd hoped to find a certain high end mascara on sale and because that particular mascara wasn't discounted I decided I wasn't going to buy something else just for the sake of it, see? Something has obviously switched over in my brain. 
Okay enough patting myself on the back.  Moving onto 2015 goals I've decided I can loosen the reigns just a little so here's what I plan to do:
1) Rather than doing 2 for 1 this year I'll use up (or cull) at least 1 makeup product before I buy a new product.  Based on my new 'restrained' behaviour I'm hopeful that won't automatically mean I run to the makeup counter every time I have another empty! Basically I'm going to genuinely want/desire/need something first. If it passes that test then it's a green light for me! 
On the other hand here's where I've UPPED the ante...

The lingering lip glosses
2) I've got waaaaay too many lip glosses in my collection so I'm going on a lip gloss buying ban FOR THE YEAR!  It shouldn't be as hard as it sounds seeing as I'm favouring mattes and longwearing lipsticks at the moment.  Having said that, hopefully I will actually finish some of my glosses and I'll also have a good hard look/sniff at which ones need to go due to old age and expiration.

 The bronzer bonanza
3) My bronzers all look so new and unloved! I've already pledged on Instagram that I'm going to start wearing my bronzers and contouring products more regularly this year and now I'm going up the ante by challenging myself to hit pan on a bronzer!!! HITTING PAN ON A BRONZER?!? CAN I DO IT??? If I can I plan on finally treating myself to a Guerlain bronzer (something I've had on my wishlist since the start of 2014)!

4) Finally, not so much a beauty plan but a blogging pledge:  I'll make sure to post at least twice a week in 2015.  Of course if I get that burst of creative energy I'll get onto it more frequently but I've been a bit all over the place this year and a couple of posts a week is very doable without me feeling pressured :)

Well I think I've got enough beauty rules for 2015.  Will you be setting yourself any challenges or resolutions for the coming year?

29 December, 2014

W7: Dawn Raider

Hi everyone! I hope you're all enjoying the holiday season :)
Sorry for my unannounced hiatus.  I was feeling quite a bit tired towards the end of my working year and I guess I didn't realize quite how mentally tired I was until I after I finished work on the 17th.  One day dragged out to the next and the next until a few weeks slipped by. Anyway I hope you get what I mean.  Now I'm finally getting ideas swirling away in my head for future posts - and I also have a ton of nail swatches - so let me get back on this blogging bike again starting with this nail post!
I wore this deep blue polish from W7 a few weeks ago when the weather was kind of dreary and I wasn't feeling in the mood for bright spring/summer colours.  Dawn Raider is basically fine silver glitter swimming in an inky navy blue jelly base so the glitter itself appears quite blue on the nail. The glitter mix and colour base are very dense so two coats easily did the job for me.  I finished with a single layer of top coat but would recommend two for a smooth glassy veneer - I still had some bumpiness on my nails although obviously not enough to annoy me to apply that second layer!

Until next time!

13 December, 2014

November's farewelled products

Ahhh...the second last empties for the year and I don't know how it happened but settle in because it's going to be a big one!! The thing that really pleases me is I even managed to finish some more makeup AFTER all of that overseas hauling a couple of months ago...
Skin care
120) La Clinica Anti Ageing Gentle Milk Facial Cleanser (10ml/0.35 fl.oz travel size)* - To change it up between other cleansers I gave this little tube a run and I enjoyed the soothing feeling of a milky cleanser.  I'll definitely be using my full sized version when the cooler months roll around again and my skin craves something a little more on the rich side.
121) La Clinica Firming Lift Helixer Facial Serum (30ml/1.05 fl.oz)* - This contains snail secretion filtrate which made me a little squeamish at first - I wasn't accustomed to snail slime on my face - but I got over that and found that this serum absorbed quickly and did feel firming on my skin. 
122) La Clinica White Brilliant Intensive Correcting Foaming Cleanser (200ml/7.04 fl.oz)* - This unscented foaming cleanser lasted several months in my shower caddy so I almost got bored with it! The foamy formula is very light and gentle, almost dissolving into the skin and rinsed off in a flash.
123) eos Lip Balm Sphere (Medicated Tangerine) - I'm biased towards these little balm balls so it won't surprise you when I say I enjoyed this medicated version. Tangerine with a slight hint of menthol, this balm went on with a slightly heavier feel than the regular version but worked well as an affordable overnight lip treatment.  My husband appreciated the flavour too!
124) Face of Australia Gentle Make-up Remover (125ml/4.23 fl.oz) - This isn't the first time and won't be the last time I use this colourless makeup remover.  It gently removes all eye makeup without any stinging or oily residue and doesn't cost a bomb either.  
Hand and body care
124) OPI Original Polish Remover (120ml/4 fl.oz) - I prefer OPI's Expert Touch because it removes my polish faster and with less effort but I bought this as my next best option when I couldn't get my favourite.
125) Dermaveen Everyday Intensive Hand Cream (100ml) - I turned to this old faithful in the colder weather when my hands were at their worst because it's formulated for sensitive skin and moisturises without aggravating my seasonal eczema.  I'm sure I'll repurchase it when I need to again.
126) Crabtree & Evelyn Summer Hill Hand Therapy (25g/0.9 oz) - Another mini tube of hand cream I carried around in my purse.  The rich but easily absorbed formula is as I've come to expect and the fruity floral Summer Hill fragrance balances perfectly on the edge of being potent without becoming overpowering.  I've got to say the C & E Iris scented hand cream I'm using right now is absolutely amazing and I'm tempted to rub it onto my pulse points!

127) Essence lipstick (Fairytale) - I bought this lippy when I first started blogging over 3 years ago so I suppose it's a little bit of a sentimental empty - I don't even think Essence sells this lipstick formula anymore (in Australia at least).  Fairytale was a sheer but buildable mauve for a low key lip colour so it was well loved and even well travelled, coming along with me on my last overseas trip!
128) Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion Eyeshadow Base - This tiny genie bottle tube came with the original UD Naked palette I bought last year.  A reliable choice if you're after a colourless base to hold eyeshadow in place, and my oily lids are thankful for that so I've finally bought a full size tube.
129) BYS Lash Extend Mascara (Black)* - This mascara came as part of a two-step lash pack with a scary dry fibre lash primer which I threw out months ago because of the fear of loose fibres getting into my eyes.  On its own BYS Lash Extend wears more like a black lash tint so I ended up hardly ever using it. 

Maybelline Color Sensational Pop Stick (Raspberry Ice) - Surely this won the award for the lip product which did NOTHING.  No colour, no gloss, no moisturising properties. Nothing. I held onto it for so long because of the novelty of having a lip thingy which looked like a jello sculpture and THAT'S IT. It's time to go...
Invisible Zinc Tinted Daywear SPF 30+ (Light) - I bought this as a multi-tasking facial sunscreen for a tropical holiday a few years ago, wore it a few times then put it away and 'forgot' about it. Not really forgot - the problem was the overly greasy, heavy formula which I couldn't handle. Now the tube's past its expiry date so it's well and truly too late to figure out how to make it work. 
130) Chanel Allure Sensuelle EDP (50ml) - Damn I loved this fragrance! If I owned a vat of it I would wear it every day, but Chanel is one of those more expensive fragrance options so I'll just dream on.  This comes across as a crisp fresh citrusy scent at first but then enriches with a seductive patchouli undertone which envelops me - I could inhale it for hours.  So what are the notes?  Top notes contain bergamot, mandarin and pink pepper. Mid notes are composed of jasmine, rose, iris, candied fruits and vetiver followed by the base notes of French vanilla, amber, patchouli and frankincense.
131) Estee Lauder Beyond Paradise EDT (10ml travel size) - I packed this summery tropical floral for my overseas trip to wear when we got to Hawaii. The top notes are Eden mist, orange blossom, blue hyacinth, and Jaboticaba berry. The floral mid notes are laelia orchid, pink honeysuckle, Japanese mahonia, while base notes are Natal plum blossom, golden melaleuca, zebrano wood, ambrette seed.
So that's it until I do the final empties roundup for 2014 and then I have to consider if I'm making any beauty resolutions for the new year!  One resolution surely ought to be getting my empties posts out in a more timely fashion...
 (Products marked * were provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)

05 December, 2014

Ulta3 Nail Colour: Corsican Rose

I've been opting for green polishes more than usual, probably falling under the influence of spring/summer- it's all of those young leaves and that fresh green grass, before the grass dries out in the first proper heatwave anyway!  I was looking for something ever so slightly 'office appropriate' and reasoned (to myself at least) that pastel mint green is going to be up there as a more wearable interpretation of green for everyday, another slightly out there 'neutral' so cue Corsican Rose from budget Australian brand Ulta3.
Corsican Rose has a reputation for being on the sheer side so I needed to apply three coats over a base coat to get good coverage but the result was worth it - creamy, minty nails that lasted a week.  Not bad at all for a $2 polish!
All pictures taken in indirect daylight:
Until next time!

02 December, 2014

REVIEW: Luk Beautifood - Lip Nourish

It's always a bonus to be wearing and reviewing a product at the same time and I've been wearing my Lip Nourish natural lipstick from Luk Beautifood pretty much constantly over the weekend (and right now). Okay, so I know exactly how it looks, feels, wears, smells, tastes (or not!) and I'll share my thoughts shortly...
First let me do my little brand intro because Luk Beautifood is another Australian natural beauty brand I've recently discovered, specialising in 'no-makeup', looking makeup aimed at the busy, no fuss woman, made from "...natural, raw and organic food so you can relax knowing you are nourishing your skin with healthy, non toxic ingredients." 

Luk Beautifood products contain no synthetic fragrances or colours, artificial flavours, phthalates, petroleum oils, lanolin, synthetic emollients, preservatives (including parabens, BHA, BHT), GMOs, animal products (other than beeswax), cochineal beetles (carmine E120).

...Getting back to the Lip Nourish lipsticks themselves: These are a range of 100% natural sheer lipsticks made from "clean active foods" and are enriched with Vitamins A, C & E, antioxidants and omega 3 & 6 essential fatty acids from avocado, sesame seeds and plant lipids to "fight free radicals, moisture-balance and protect to keep the lips soft, smooth and illuminated."  

There are 7 shades/flavours in the range, all naturally scented by their namesake ingredients and I chose the sheer dusty pink Orange & Juniper, obviously scented with orange rind and crushed juniper berries!!

Packaging first and this is my one gripe so I'll get it out of the way.  As the twist up mechanism was a little stubborn, I thought the balm wasn't going to twist up from the tube at all! After a few attempts I got it working but I'm not going to twist it back down into the tube just in case. I don't know if it was just my luck but I figure it's worth mentioning.

Now onto the important stuff inside the tube!  The fruity - in this case citrusy - scent seems quite strong in when you smell it in the tube, but the flavour is quite subtle when applied on the lips and really only lasts a few minutes before it fades away to nothing.  So if you're not a fan of flavoured lip products don't let the mention of flavour put you off here because it's not going to hang around.

The thing I really fell for was the ease of application and the comfort on the lips.  The colour is sheer, satiny and very natural looking on my lips so I can literally swipe it on without the need for a mirror - something I rarely do unless it's a colourless balm.  I completely get that the Lip Nourish lipsticks are for the 'no-makeup' look and the result is basically my lips but just that little bit better in the most subtle way - it's like the old 'is she or isn't she?' wearing makeup idea put into practice and I like the subtle youthful glow, sans gloss these impart on my lips. Being the diehard bright lipstick girl that I am, I know these won't take the place of my signature bright weekday lip look but they're a brilliant idea for low key weekend looks, and whenever I don't want to wear makeup but want that little indiscernible healthy looking 'something' on my lips. 

And the comfort? The Lip Nourish feels like a lightweight, almost velvety balm and is very long lasting, with no greasy migration beyond the lip line at all, and my lips feel soft without any stickiness or tackiness. As you can see in the swatches below Orange & Juniper was the perfect natural pick for me.

Swatched on the inside of my arm:
And on my lips:
  Luk Beautifood Lip Nourish natural lipsticks are $24.95 each from the Luk Beautifood site here or the full set of 7 can be purchased for the super special Christmas price of $99.00 here.
(This product was provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)
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