27 July, 2015

DB Quick Colour Nail Polish: Aubergine

 Australian budget beauty brand Designer Brands (also known as DB Cosmetics) has been around for years but for whatever reason I'd never stopped to have a proper look at their lineup.  That changed when I spotted this very polish being worn by Lou in a recent Instagram post.  A few things caught my eye: the colour first of course for this purpleholic, but also the packaging which looks very chic and reminds me of a very high end brand - for reference I've included an image of the bottle later in the post.

Aubergine is a very rich shimmery pink-toned purple and the colour was not a disappointment when I finally bought my own bottle - it is exactly what I hoped! However, the polish formula was rather thick and it was virtually impossible to apply as thin a coat as I normally like to - fortunately the polish did dry very quickly so I had no issues with smudges or dents.  My final niggle is the manicure wasn't particularly durable and I experienced significant chipping within the week, even with a top coat.  I don't know if I was just unlucky so I will buy another shade to try before I come to any conclusions.  I hope I was unlucky because the colour is a stunner for winter.

All pictures taken in afternoon sunlight:

Now as I mentioned the bottle design did look uncannily familiar to me.  Does the bottle below remind you of any high end brand?? Let me know in the comments below.

DB Quick Colour nail polishes are free from formaldehyde, toluene or DBP, are Certified Cruelty Free and Certified Vegan.

Until next time!

26 July, 2015

Revlon Colorstay Makeup for Normal/Dry Skin (Priceline Beauty Click favourites)

I used to be very wary of foundation (I suffered one skin suffocating experience too many all those years ago) so to be honest for as long as I could get away with it I consciously didn't wear foundation as I preferred to spot conceal and powder the rest, but as time marches and I get older my skin isn't what it used to be so a little help is needed!

I normally rely on BB creams and or powders but - as you've likely gathered from the title of this post - Revlon Colorstay Makeup took me a little by surprise, especially as it's a drugstore option. Now that we've been introduced I've changed my opinion about drugstore foundation - well this one at least - for the better. 

Revlon Colorstay Makeup comes in two formulas:  Normal/Dry and Combination/Oily.  I received the Normal/Dry version and as I have a tendency towards combination skin I was a bit concerned this formula would be too dewy for me.  It turns out I was unnecessarily worried as the oil-free, "moisture-balance" formula did not make me end up looking overly shiny at all. More about that a little later...

What Revlon says about Colorstay Makeup for Normal/Dry Skin:
  • Offers medium to full coverage with a lightweight formula that won't cake, fade or rub off
  • Time Release Technology
  • Oil-free, moisture-balance formula is especially formulated for normal or dry skin to continuously provide hydration
  • Makeup feels comfortable and wears for up to 24 hours
  • Comes in 12 beautiful shades
  • SPF 20
  • The pump dispenser means no more tipping the bottle upside down, no more wastage

One pump: 

Blended out:

My impressions:
I received shade 220 Natural Beige to try which is from around the middle of the range of shades available.  It's a touch darker than my pallid winter skin but warms it up just enough without looking obviously darker and I think it will be just about perfect when the warmer months come around.

The pump dispenser is definitely a good packaging move as it makes it easy and hygienic to apply and I found that a single pump dispensed just the right amount for a light-medium coverage for everyday wear.  Yes, the liquid formula builds nicely too so a second pump provides enough for extra coverage where needed. I find this foundation applies easily straight over moisturized skin and buffs out to a very natural looking satiny finish.  I apply a little translucent powder to set it - out of habit mostly - and I find it lasts all day even without a primer.  Despite the moisturizing formula I barely experience any midday shine - a single top up of powder over the T-zone in the middle of day is all that's occasionally needed and then I'm good for the rest of the day.  Gotta say that I'm not planning to see if it lasts for 24 hours though! 15 to 16 hour days are good enough for me!

Revlon Colorstay Makeup lives up to the comfortable claims too and is lightweight enough on the skin that I don't notice I'm wearing it - and I've been wearing it pretty much every day lately.  I have to say that this is one drugstore foundation that lives up to the raves as I can't find anything that I don't like about it. It does everything I want my foundation to do: it looks natural, I can adjust the coverage to my needs, it feels comfortable and lasts the distance without the need for primer.

Until next time!

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

19 July, 2015

OPI: Taupe-less Beach

Today's polish swatch is from a summer collection (OPI's 2014 Brazil Collection) but I think it's most winter-appropriate too...

Taupe-less Beach has just the right mix of grey and beige and is the perfect all year round neutral cream polish.  Two coats applied as smoothly as the proverbial butter and after sealing with top coat I got almost a full week of chip-free wear.  I've got nothing more to say about this one really other than I hope it becomes part of OPI's core line.

The weather has been particularly gloomy around here so all pictures were taken under lamplight:

Until next time!

15 July, 2015

Indeed Labs Hydraluron Moisture Jelly (Priceline Beauty Click favourites)

Welcome to the latest instalment in my Priceline Beauty Click favourites series - and a little impromptu introduction to hyaluronic acid!

I don't know if I'm one of the last people to discover hyaluronic acid in skincare or whether it's a mystery to you too but it has become one of those key ingredients in moisturizing over the last couple of years because of its ability to draw water to the skin and help prevent moisture loss.  Fun fact:  hyaluronic acid molecules have the unique ability to attract and retain more than 1,000 times their weight in water...

....which brings me to Indeed Labs Hydraluron Moisture Jelly.  I didn't know anything about the science behind this product when I received it for review, nor did I do any research before I tried it so my Priceline Beauty Click favourite status was initially based on the wear test (the science came much later).  If you are into the science behind it and want to read all about hyaluronic acid click on this article I dug up from Hyalogic.com:  About Hyaluronic Acid 

Okay - So not surprisingly Indeed Labs say on their website that Hydraluron Moisture Jelly will:

"Provide immediate and long lasting moisture protection
Help skin regain optimal moisture levels
Defend against moisture loss and creates a protective film on skin’s surface"

as it...

"...helps provide both instant and long-term locked-in moisture to the skin through a sophisticated complex of 5 key actives, which support the natural protective layer of your skin, helping to restore moisture levels and defending against future loss..." , leading to softer, smoother and plumper skin as the hyaluronic acid improves the skin's hydration levels, stimulating collagen production.

My impressions:
You know I like good clever packaging so I can't go on to the rest of my review without addressing that first.  One little press of the top of the jar results in the hygienic delivery of precisely the right amount of product to moisturize my face as you can see above.  This means I don't have to worry about any waste or contaminating the jelly by dipping my fingers into the product.  I'm sure this isn't the only brand with this kind of packaging but I'm impressed the innovation - whoever came up with it! If you know, then feel free to educate me in the comments below.

This moisturizer is also an innovative product in my experience as the jelly formulation feels like nothing I've ever used before - it's cooling and refreshing at first, then sits like a 'second skin' on my face.  It's like I'm wearing an invisible barrier on my skin but there's not a hint of greasiness or tackiness, nor does it feel in any way suffocating (as I'd feared it might) and my skin feels smoother, moisturized and well, yes, 'plump'.  Any woman my age has got to love plumped up skin!

I've been wearing Hydraluron Moisture Jelly as my morning and night moisturizer as it works well as a makeup base too.  I have normal to combination, and infuriatingly occasionally sensitive skin and have had no issues with any breakouts since using this and because of the light jelly formula I think this would work well on younger, oilier skins also.  It's a refreshing feeling, long-lasting moisturizer and has opened my eyes to the point of difference of hyaluronic acid as a lighter way of hydrating the skin.

water (aqua/eau), glycerin, pentylene glycol, glycereth-26, carbomer, glyceryl polyacrylate, trehalose,  urea, strelitzia nicolaiseed aril extract, sodium hydroxide, disodium EDTA, serine,  biosaccharide gum-1, algin, disodium phosphate, pullulan, sodiumhyaluronate, potassium phosphate, caprylyl glycol, phenoxyethanol.

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

12 July, 2015

Wet n Wild Color Shine Nail Color: Lady Luck

It's time to sport another old polish from the depths of my equally old Ikea Helmer cabinet!

I'd decided that the right shade of pink can be just as easily worn in the middle of winter as the middle of summer so Wet n Wild's Lady Luck is what I came up with for a quick cheer-me-up manicure.  Lady Luck is deeper shade of pink - almost fuchsia - with the barest hint of shimmer that only really reveals itself in the brightest light.  This polish was a travel souvenir from a friend a few years ago and I think it may be discontinued so I apologize again and I won't get into the application details - my point is that pink is a valid nail colour choice for winter, unless of course you're lucky enough to be enjoying the Northern summer right now!

Full sun

 Partial sun

How do you like to brighten up your winter?

08 July, 2015

The hunt for the perfect brown-red lipstick (shopping my stash)

Here's a fun post for Hump Day!

So, I alluded to my change of hair colour in my last post and how it's influenced my taste in other things - namely makeup! It's amazing (pretty logical really) how a new hair colour can get you out of a makeup rut.  Taking advantage of that brief window before the red tint fades from my lightened hair - as it inevitably does and is already - I'm suddenly all about wearing complimentary warmer shades of lipstick and that had me zeroing in on brown-red.

My knee-jerk reaction was to go out and buy a new tube of lippy (Great excuse right?) but I've done the sensible thing first - this time - and gone on a treasure hunt in my lipstick collection to see what I have in brown-red.  Brown-red...is that Pantone's Marsala?? Hmmm...  Before I let myself muse any more on that point, here are the three lipsticks I came up with...
L - R: 
MAC - Dubonnet, Natio - Flame, Revlon - Wine With Everything

  • MAC Dubonnet was the first lipstick I specifically dove into my collection for, as this Amplified formula lipstick is almost the colour of dried blood.  It definitely leans more to red but has the hint of brown to give it the warmth I'm looking for. This lipstick is by far the deepest shade in this trio and with its rich pigment and slight sheen it makes for a strong statement lip.  My only issue with this lipstick is because it's so dramatic and not a matte it requires more care to ensure it doesn't end up everywhere but on my lips when drinking and eating!
  • Natio Flame is a shade lighter and brighter than Dubonnet and sits more in the middle of red and brown so is the true brown-red.  This shade looks like terracotta on my lips and has more of a low maintenance semi-matte finish.  This is the newest of the three lipsticks, which I bought on an unsuspecting whim a few months ago and is my favourite of the bunch because it is exactly what I was looking for in terms of colour and finish for a daytime lipstick. Success!
  • Revlon Wine With Everything is an old tube (as you can see by the outdated packaging above) but this colour is a Revlon classic and still available in their core range of Super Lustrous lipsticks. This leans more towards the cooler end of the red spectrum as a plummier red, so kind of misses the brown-red mark although it still flatters strawberry-blonde hair, and is an appropriately classic rediscovery for a winter lip.

The swatches (top to bottom in the same order as above):

Besides having obvious fun playing in my own little makeup pit, the end result of this exercise were the realisations that:

I actually do have the perfect brown-red lipstick in my collection;
I don't need to go lipstick shopping after all;
I've embraced Pantone's colour of the year....maybe???
My own stash is the first place to shop!

When did you last shop your own makeup collection?

06 July, 2015

Covergirl: Inferno

I changed my hair colour a week ago and now that it's a warmer, strawberry blonde I've been inspired to go with warmer shades all round!

I bought Covergirl's Inferno from a Walgreen's store in Hawaii as I hadn't seen this polish colour available in Australia (my research has since informed this was from the LE Capitol Collection released in 2013) and Covergirl do some of the most amazing flecked polishes.  This polish lived up to the promise in the bottle with a fiery mix of gold flecks peeking through the deep red base and full coverage was easily achieved in 2 coats.  The obligatory top coat provided a glassier shine to seal it off.  Even a gloomy winter's day couldn't hide dull the fiery glow of this one...

I think this shade will be staying in my collection for the long haul because it's so unique.

Until next time!

03 July, 2015

June's farewelled products

I'm actually reasonably on schedule with posting this time but I'll keep it short and sweet nonetheless...

Skin care

64) Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water (400ml) - Here I am finishing off my second bottle. I'm trying another brand at the moment but this is still a favourite for a refreshing (and inexpensive) fuss-free cleanse.

65) Kirkland Daily Facial Cleansing Towelettes (30 towelettes) - Hallelujah! I'm relieved to have finished my last pack of these wipes. There'll be no repurchasing of these!

66) La Clinica Gly C Refine Gentle Moisture Night Cream 5% (50ml/1.76 fl.oz)* - Be warned, the glycolic acid means this stuff tingles initially as it gets to work but the sensation goes away after a few minutes and there's no scary redness, just moisturised skin that feels super soft the next morning.

67) NIVEA Vanilla & Macadamia Lip Butter (19ml) - I was using this as an overnight lip treatment and the addictive scent meant I used way too much and used it up ridiculously quickly! 

Hand and body care

68) OPI Expert Touch Lacquer Remover (120ml/4 fl.oz) - A regular inclusion in my empties and I have a few more bottles in my cupboard...

69) NIVEA Silk Touch Anti-perspirant Deodorant (50ml)* - Very gentle, yet also very effective. I just wish the bottle was a little larger. See my full review here.

70) Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser (250ml) - This is the non-drying soap free cleanser I turn to in the cooler, drier months when my skin needs a little extra TLC.

71) NIVEA In-Shower Body Lotion Cocoa Indulging (250ml)* - This in-shower rinse-off body lotion is body moisturiser's answer to hair conditioner.  I loved it and went out and bought a bigger bottle after I finished this.  See my full review here.

Hair care

72) John Frieda Luxurious Volume Root Booster Blow Dry Lotion (6.0 fl.oz/177 ml) - I didn't love this as much as I expected to.  The pump doesn't dispense the product finely enough and it doesn't provide as soft, touchable volume as other products I've tried.  I won't be repurchasing.


73) SilkyGirl Magic BB Cream (01 Natural) - One of the best BB creams I've tried in a perfectly matched shade for my warm toned, yet pale skin! There's an upcoming trip to Singapore on the cards too...

74) Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick (166 Temptation) - This has long been my favourite red lipstick from the drugstore and when I say a long time, I mean it because this tube lasted a good 2 to 3 years!

75) Chanel Le Volume De Chanel Mascara (10 Black) - This was gifted to me by the husband and I used it for way longer than I should because, well, I know it's expensive, and also because I loved it - I get what all the fuss is about! To recap my earlier and unchanged thoughts:  I love the soft, rubbery brush, the creamy formula, the instant volume and the softness of my lashes.

76) Rimmel Wonder'full Waterproof Mascara (001 Black) - Now this one underwhelmed me.  No volume, but more of a tint for my lashes and it still managed to leave little clumps!


77) Diptyque Florabellio EDT (2ml/0.06 fl.oz) - I haven't endured a scent so unsuitable to my taste for a long time as I couldn't get past the sharp bitterness of it.  If you're curious this is what Fragrantica.com has to say about the notes:   "Florabellio opens with refreshing salty breezes of sea air mixed with sea fennel. After the aromatic opening, which cools down and provides a characteristic blend of salt of the sea and the aromatic scent of fennel, the focus lies on the floral heart, intertwining apple blossom petals and osmanthus blossom, which thanks to its characteristically sweet scent reminds us of apricots. An unusual twist in the base notes is added by roasted coffee beans combined with roasted sesame seeds, leaving a seductive trail after the sweet flowers." 

And the rest...

Yes, like a lot of blogger friends I know, I'm making an effort to get through my samples too.  I'm not going to clog up this space with sample reviews but if you are interested to see more about these you can check out my #useupthosefreakinsamples updates (as inspired by Monika) on Instagram.

That's it for another month!

(Products marked * were provided for my consideration.  All comments and opinions are my own.)

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