29 April, 2015

Essie: Fear Or Desire

Orange is another one of those seasonal colour fads I go through, usually at the same time of year.  It's when summer is more than halfway gone and autumn's on the way.

Cue this swatch that has been hanging around on my computer since February - Essie's Fear Or Desire.  This bright orange polish was released in Essie's 2012 Bikini So Teeny collection and I scored it much more recently at a cosmetics discount store for less than half the usual price. Because of that little fact I thought I was going to have to disappoint and say it's been discontinued but this is still available for those orange fiends out there.  Now about the application...it's been so long since I wore this that I can't remember the specifics of the application, but if it was nasty I would have remembered I'm sure!

All pictures taken in indirect daylight:

Do you get colour obsessed too?

26 April, 2015

Review: NIVEA Silk Touch anti-perspirant deodorant

Let's talk about sweat baby! Let's talk about you and me! Sorry I'm twisting song lyrics again...

Getting a little more serious, let's talk a bit about me (perhaps a bit too much information about me) - but let me tell you that without an effective anti-perspirant I will most definitely sweat - a lot - and it won't be pretty so anti-perspirant is a staple in my daily routine.  I also have sensitive skin and have been known to break out in allergic rashes to unsuitable products so that in itself can be a uncomfortable challenge for me. Hence my needs are gentle but effective sweat and odour control.

NIVEA have recently released Silk Touch anti-perspirant deodorant and this product claims to be different as the new formula is "...specifically designed to help care for skin with its unique quick dry effect and silky soft feel..." and contains the "ultra-light" ingredient Kaolin, an all-natural clay mineral, to help absorb moisture while keeping the underarm skin smooth.  

My impressions:
The milky, alcohol-free roll-on glides onto the skin and does not sting - especially after shaving.  The non-sticky formula definitely feels lightweight and comfortable and dries quickly enough for me not to have to wait around before getting dressed and - this is an important plus for me - I don't have to worry about wet anti-perspirant marks on my clothes which can drive me crazy when I'm in a rush!

I was really interested to read about the number of fragrance notes in this anti-perspirant too:  Citrus, bergamot, rose, geranium and musk which all combine into a delicate and subtle scent that lasts all day without being obtrusive - armpits should be delicately and pleasantly scented shouldn't they!  And of course they should be dry and this kept me dry and comfortable all day - and my sensitive skin agrees with it too.  I can't say if the protection lasts 48 hours as claimed (because I never leave it that long between showers) but it definitely lasts me from one shower to the next.

Aqua, Aluminium Chlorohydrate, PPG-15 Stearyl Ether, Steareth-2, Steareth-21, Parfum, Kaolin, Persea Gratissima Oil, Trisodium EDTA, Limonene, Linalool, Alpha-isomethyl Ionone, Geraniol, Benzyl Alcohol, Coumarin.

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

25 April, 2015

OPI Hawaii Collection: Lost My Bikini In Molokini

A good mid-tone purple is one of those colours that can be worn any time of the year and Lost My Bikini In Molokini from OPI's Hawaii collection is definitely one of those.

I've a well documented love of purple so of course I enjoyed wearing this colour.  While OPI say Lost My Bikini In Molokini is "reef inspired", to me this cool blue-toned purple is reminiscent of Iris flowers, another reason that I love it.  The application itself was trouble-free and done in 2 coats and this manicure graced my nails for the working week with minimal chipping.  All pictures were taken in indirect daylight:

What's your favourite shade from the Hawaii collection?

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

23 April, 2015

OPI Hawaii Collection: Aloha From OPI

Now that I've swatched some of the pastels from OPI's Hawaii collection I'm onto some brights - just what we need down here at the moment to distract from the fact that winter's well on the way...

Aloha From OPI is one of those very familiar - yet still irresistible to me - bright coral shades which pop up in any decent spring/summer nail lacquer collection.  Caving in to my weakness for coral, as soon as I saw Aloha in the Little Hulas pack I chose it for my vacation pedi (I'm happy to report it's still going strong on my tootsies after 3 weeks too)!  Of course I will spare you pictures of my pedicure in a favour of a more traditional fingernail swatch - this is two coats minus the topcoat this time and it still looks pretty juicy...



Until the next swatch post!

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

22 April, 2015

NARSissist Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow Palette - a little review and a lot of swatches!

In the midst of the endless sea of limited releases I try to ignore there is always something that catches my eye and starts my heart a-fluttering...

This time it was the NARSissist Dual-Intensity palette and after ignoring the single Dual-Intensity shadows for as long as I could, I got caught up in the hype.  I watched some very persuasive YouTube videos, which aside from some incredible swatches, reasoned the better deal of getting 8 x 1 gram shades for just under the price of 3 full sized shades (which retail at $38AUD each down here) so I made up my mind then and there.  Granted this set me back a whopping $98AUD but then again that's less than a Tom Ford quad right? *winks*

The mirrored palette comprises 7 shades from the permanent range of individual shadows plus an exclusive shade Ursa Major, which is a satin finish, deep grey-toned brown.  While some of you may have been disappointed at the lack of limited edition shades I was pleased because I want to have the option of purchasing full sizes if I happen to fall in love with any shade in particular. On the other hand, if you were lusting after the palette and can't get your hands on it you still have the consolation of the majority of shades being available.

Looking at the range of colours I could be really picky and point out this palette lacks a matte transition shade but the positives outweigh that little negative.  The arrangement of shadows in two tonal rows - one warm, one cool - makes it easy for me to create looks without straining the old brain and then again I like having the option to experiment across the colour families when I'm feeling adventurous.

The shadows feel quite buttery to the touch and are a mix of soft shimmers, metallics and satins with a sole almost-matte: the black Sycorax.  Worn dry I've been able to get a pretty decent daytime smokey eye as these are easy to build and reasonably easy to blend (cue that need for a transition shade).  Of course these are dual-intensity and they are something else when applied wet.  Now for the dry and wet swatches as applied to unprimed skin.

Top row dry swatched left to right:
Europa, Himalia, Ursa Major (LE shade), Subra

Swatched wet in the same order:

Bottom row dry swatched left to right:
Andromeda, Lysithea, Giove, Sycorax...

...and swatched wet in the same order:

Yes, this was expensive and it's not perfect but I don't regret it  -  I've always been a fan of shimmer and I like having the options of doing a soft shimmery daytime look or a liquid metal look for nighttime drama. It's all about the options with this palette.

Oh, and maybe a little about the sleek packaging too - even if it's a fingerprint magnet...

Have you been tempted by NARS Dual-Intensity?

21 April, 2015

OPI Hawaii Collection: That's Hula-rious!

Yes the name of this polish is typically hilarious or "Hula-rious!" as OPI have put it!

That's Hula-rious! (try typing that quickly without making a mistake!) is a fairly standard pastel mint green cream although the coverage was above average.  I was able to get it done in just 2 coats of colour where I would have expected 3 to achieve full coverage with a pastel.  This is definitely a spring-appropriate shade although I enjoyed going against our southern autumn and wearing it last week...



Until next time!

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

18 April, 2015

OPI Hawaii Collection: Suzi Shops & Island Hops

OPI's new Hawaii collection actually had me excited with all of its colourful choices so I was glad to get my hands onto the Little Hulas mini lacquers box for review. 

My first swatch is a cotton candy pink cream called Suzi Shops & Island Hops.  The OPI site makes me giggle at the description of this shade as a "...light and happy pink that's the perfect traveling companion" because this is the polish I unwittingly chose for my two-week beach getaway!  This is a two to three coater pastel although the finish is a durable one and with top coat this lasted almost the entire two weeks with minimal chipping.  All pictures were taken in indirect, cloudy old daylight (before I went away):

The mini brush is a little more fiddly than the regular OPI brush but because it's neatly cut it's still relatively easy to use. 

Until next time!

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

16 April, 2015

Essano Rosehip Treat Your Skin Pack (Priceline Beauty Click favourites)

While I've used rosehip oil products for my body until now I hadn't used any on my face.  Being a normal/oily combo skin type I'll admit to an uninformed fear of exacerbating any oiliness in my T-zone so I hadn't really gone there.  Of course being presented with the Rosehip Treat Your Skin Pack for review meant I had to go there and - yes, you know what's coming because the word 'favourites' is in the title - I'm so pleased I did!

Before I get into my rave review I'll list the benefits of rosehip oil as sourced from Rosehip Oil Benefits.com:

"− great natural skin care moisturiser
− research has indicated that it may have benefits for reducing some scars
− aids in reducing redness associated with facial rosacea
− improves appearance of psoriasis scars
− many acne sufferers find that it can be improve the quality of their skin
− reduces the appearance of premature aging skin as it can reduce wrinkles, crow's feet and fine lines
− great treatment for dry skin
− good for your after sun skin care regime."

The site also very kindly pointed out that rosehip oil is "...readily absorbed by the skin and doesn't leave the oily residue that many beauty and skin care products do." 
Now let's get onto the Rosehip Treat Your Skin Pack: 
This travel-friendly pack from New Zealand based brand essano comprises 20ml tubes of facial cleanser, facial moisturiser, and body lotion, plus a 10g tub of night cream and a 3ml dropper bottle of certified organic rosehip oil itself so it's a great way to try a range of rosehip oil products before making the commitment to full size products.   These are all nicely presented in an unbleached drawstring pouch which came in handy for throwing into my toiletries bag for my recent beach trip.
After trying all of the products I have a few specific favourites which I will be purchasing in full size - and in one case I already have!
I've done mini reviews on each of the products and full ingredients listings are provided at the end of the post for those who are interested.
  • Gentle Foaming Facial Cleanser - Containing rosehip oil and aloe vera for hydration, this is a very emollient feeling gel cleanser and a little bit does a great job of cleansing my face while keeping my skin feeling soft.  It almost feels like an oil at first but it foams up gently and rinses away easily without any residual slippery or greasy feeling - I really like how this cleanser leaves my skin clean yet not screaming out for a drink of moisturiser afterwards.
  • Regenerating Facial Moisturiser - This naturally and delicately scented day (or night for that matter) facial moisturiser contains jojoba oil and shea butter and sits somewhere between a cream and a lotion so it feels light in texture and again I find that a little bit goes a long way. It absorbs pretty much instantly leaving soft, non-greasy skin.  
  • Intensive Hydrating Body Lotion - Okay, this is the product I absolutely fell madly in love with and have purchased already! Yes it does a great job of moisturising my body (due to the rosehip oil, aloe vera and jojoba oil no doubt) but it is the SCENT that I'm head over heels with! You know when you find yourself sniffing your arms all day just to get a whiff of your body lotion?  Maybe?? Well that's what - embarrassingly - happens whenever I wear this.  It smells like an intoxicating, yet still soft, combination of rose and patchouli(?).  I can't pin it down exactly because I am an untrained nose when it comes to these things but I've actually told essano - and am telling them again if they're reading this post - if they were to release this as a fragrance I would buy it.  There's nothing but 100% love from me when it comes to this product!
  • Certified Organic Rosehip Oil - This was the product I was initially sceptical of and is now one of my favourites of the lot.  Using a 3ml sample bottle wasn't enough to do miracles but it was enough to whet my appetite to buy a full size bottle and see.  This oil easily takes the place of a serum in terms of how silky it makes my skin feel and how surprisingly well it absorbs - I honestly didn't believe an oil would agree with me but there you go! It works particularly well under the night cream which is my other top pick...
  • Moisture Restorative Night Creme - This cream has almost a whipped texture, feels indulgent yet not too heavy on my skin and it has that lovely subtle, natural scent.  My skin feels plumped up afterwards and I wake up with softer skin the next morning. As with the facial moisturiser the key ingredients are certified organic rosehip oil, organic jojoba oil and shea butter.
These products are not tested on animals and are free from the following ingredients:  parabens, sulphates, silicones, phthalates, ethoxylates, PEGs, PPGs, mineral oils, and artificial colours.
Ingredients listings:

  • Gentle Foaming Facial Cleanser - Water (Aqua), Caprylyl Glucoside, Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Coco-glucoside (and) Glyceril Oleate, Carbomer, Phenoxyethanol (and) Ethylhexylglycerin, Fragrance, Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate, Sodium Hydroxide, Phormium Tenax (Harakeke) Extract, Cyathea Medullaris (Mamaku) Extract, Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Fruit Oil.
  • Regenerating Facial Moisturiser - Water (Aqua), Caprylyl Glucoside, Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Glycerin, Coco-caprylate, Cetearyl Alcohol (and) Cetearyl Glucoside, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Bentonite, Glyceryl Stearate, Cera Alba, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Benzyl Alcohol (and) Dehydroacetic Acid, Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Fruit Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate, Xanthan Gum, Fragrance, Cyathea Medullaris (Mamaku) Extract, Phormium Tenax (Harakeke) Extract, Potassium Sorbate, Lactic Acid.
  • Intensive Hydrating Body Lotion - Water (Aqua), Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Coco-caprylate, Cetearyl Alcohol (and) Cetearyl Glucoside, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Glycerin, Bentonite, Cera Alba, Lanolin Cera, Betaine, Benzyl Alcohol (and) Dehydroacetic Acid, Glyceryl Stearate, Fragrance, Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Xanthan Gum, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Fruit Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Potassium Sorbate, Lactic Acid.
  • Certified Organic Rosehip Oil - Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Fruit Oil, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Pulp Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E).
  • Moisture Restorative Night Crème - Water (Aqua), Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol (and) Cetearyl Glucoside, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cetyl Alcohol, Coco-caprylate, Glyceryl Stearate, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Stearyl Alcohol, Bentonite, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Benzyl Alcohol (and) Dehydroacetic Acid, Linum Usitatissimum (Linseed) Seed Oil, Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Fruit Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate, Xanthan Gum, Fragrance, Cyathea Medullaris (Mamaku) Extract, Phormium Tenax (Harakeke) Extract, Lactic Acid, Potassium Sorbate.

    So there you have it - I'm a new convert to Rosehip Oil products thanks to this pack and highly recommend it for anyone else who would like to try the range or for travel!
 (This product was provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)

13 April, 2015

She Aromatherapy Nail Varnish: Golden Sequins

Ah, the over the top appeal of gilt coated nails.  To quote Goldmember, the Dutch accented baddie in the third Austin Powers instalment, "I love gooooold!"and the polish featured in this post is the epitome of all things crazy gooooold!
Due to the uniformly fine micro-glitter, She Aromatherapy's Golden Sequins wears like golden lamé on the nails and is undoubtedly over the top yet beautiful at the same time.  It only took two coats to produce this showstopping effect and as I don't need to say any more I'll let the pictures speak for themselves...
This is my idea of a party polish and as with all of the micro-glitters in the She Aromatherapy range this polish provides plenty of glittery bling without the headache of difficult removal. 
Until next time!

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