Month: January 2012

A Make-Up Look With Only 3 Products!

It has been sweltering in Melbourne recently with the crazy heat.  It’s been so hot that I have not bothered with full-on make-up and just kept products to a minimum.  Here’s a Face Of The Day I wore last week where I only used 3 make-up products.

natural make-up look, FOTD

The 3 products used to create this look are :-

1.  Lancome Hypnose Doll Eyes Mascara :  I can go without eyeliner, but not mascara!  (Click here for review)
2.  FACE OF AUSTRALIA Lip Quench SPF 30+ Forbidden Fruit :  This is a highly pigmented red lippy, but I applied it lightly using fingertips as a stain on my lips and cheeks and it gave a lovely rosy glow.  (Click here for true swatch)
3.  Urban Decay Pocket Rocket Lip Gloss Colin :  When it’s hot outside, I like to keep my lips moist with lip gloss and this sheer orange-red is one of my favourites.  (Click here for true swatch)

For my face, I could have used BB cream but I chose to go bare-faced but piled on my zinc oxide sunscreen (look, no white cast FTW!).  And I’ve been getting some nice compliments about my skin and it’s mostly due to the Rationale Skincare evening routine and my new beauty gadget – Hitachi Hadacrie which I shall be reviewing very soon.

And yes, before you say anything, I really need to do something to my hair!!  I’ve been having a lot of bad hair days recently!  LOL.

Can you do a make-up look with only 3 products?  What are 3 make-up items you cannot live without?  And what did you think of my FOTD? 

FACE OF AUSTRALIA Barbados Nail Enamel Let’s Go Scuba Diving

After having a fabulous Molten Metallics nail polish collection, FACE OF AUSTRALIA have done it again!  Their new (yet-to-be-released but coming very soon) Barbados collection has won my heart!  I was blessed to get my mitts on 3 of these sexy babies (thanks to MBBE 2011) – Let’s Go Scuba Diving, Orange You Glad You Came? and Bright Lights, Pink City.

Today I’m showing you the swatch of Let’s Go Scuba Diving.  I have no complaints about the formula as it applied easily with two coats.

Let's Go Scuba Diving nail swatch, FACE OF AUSTRALIA nail polish, FOA Barbados nails

Let’s Go Scuba Diving is a unique shade in my nail polish collection.  It’s an aquamarine shade with emerald and blue shimmy shimmer.  Truly breathtaking!

FOA nail swatch Barbados

I can’t swim to save myself so I won’t be scuba diving anytime soon…but with FACE OF AUSTRALIA’s mesmerising Let’s Go Scuba Diving on my nails, I can dream!

Of course, I’ll be showing you the swatches of the other nail polishes – Orange You Glad You Came? and Bright Lights, Pink City.  Which one would you like to see first?

AUM Firming Eye Cream

Happy Saturday ladies!  I’m going to stuff cotton wool balls into my ears to block out unwanted noises just to watch today’s Australian Open women’s final with a grunting Sharapova and a screaming Azarenka.  What will you be doing today?

Anyway, last week, I reviewed my first ever organic eyeshadow palette and today, I’m reviewing my first ever organic eye cream and it’s AUM Firming Eye Cream.

AUM products, organic skincare review

Product Description

A light cream with Aum’s signature Marine Complex helps brighten and reduce the appearance of fine lines. Ocra and Argan extracts help smooth skin for a refreshed and youthful eye contour area.

My Thoughts

The skincare product I use the least is any kind of body moisturiser including hand cream – because I am lazy and it takes too much effort to rub in the cream.  And then it’s eye cream – not because I am lazy.  I try and take care of my face because generally, people see my face and not my naked body.  I want to look as young as possible.  But I tend to steer away from eye cream because they usually end up giving me milia (white sesame seed spots around eyes which are a HUGE pain to extract!)

With AUM Firming Eye Cream, I have been using it on and off for a couple of months.  It is light and more thick serum-ish than a cream.  I like that it’s in a dropper bottle instead of a jar – but because of its consistency, too much of the product can get dispensed at one time.  After application and when it dries, I noticed a ‘tight’ feeling around my eyes – it must be doing its thang by firming up the skin!  It didn’t reduce my eyebags and dark circles though.  After a while, a couple of milia formed on my right eyelid area so I stopped using it.  And then I went back on it…and then I stopped again.

If you’re into organic skincare and you’re looking for a light eye cream to target fine lines, do check out AUM Firming Eye Cream.  It’s affordable at under $30 too!

Mirenesse Tight Liner Hydra Gel Eyeliner In Sapphire Blue

mirenesse boutique M exclusive collection

It’s Australia Day today in…Australia!  Being a Scottish expat, I don’t really know what it’s all about but I know that the Mr has a day off so we’ll be spending it together – YAY!  Today’s post is kinda Aussie-ish because I’ll be talking about an Aussie brand and the product is dark blue (like it is in the Aussie flag).  Totally winging this!  LOL.  Anyway…

Mirenesse is an Australian cosmetic brand which sponsored a number of goodies from their Boutique M Exclusive Collection at ABBW last year.  I cannot believe I have failed to give them even a wee mention on this blog!  Shame on me!!!  One of the products I received was Mirenesse Tight Liner Hydra Gel Eyeliner in Sapphire Blue.

mirenesse boutique M exclusive collection

Mirenesse Tight Liner Hydra Gel Eyeliner in Sapphire Blue is unlike all the other felt tip eyeliners I have used (Rimmel, FOA, Heroine Make).

A)  It’s not black.
B)  It’s actually a gel eyeliner and not a liquid eyeliner.  But I wouldn’t be able to differentiate between them because it just felt like a felt tip eyeliner.

Apparently, it can be used to tightline eyes.  (Check out Paris B’s tutorial on how to do this)  Personally, I have not tried doing this myself with the Mirenesse Tight Liner – mainly because I don’t tend to tightline as my eyes are rather sensitive and the last time I did it, I gave me a pink eye infection.  Not good!  And also, tightlining with sapphire blue…??  Maybe if I was Lady Gaga…

I just use Mirenesse Tight Liner Hydra Gel Eyeliner in Sapphire Blue the boring old school way – i.e. line upper lash line – but because it is blue, I don’t use it that often…perhaps once in a blue (pun alert) moon!

The colour is intense and it creates lovely thick lines.  I actually prefer a thicker tip than too thin (like Heroine Make which is 0.5mm) because it is easier to control.  Think of it as walking in high heels.  It is easier to walk in high heels like platforms rather than stilettos.  Probably didn’t explain that too well, but I hope you know what I mean.

mirenesse boutique M exclusive collection, blue eyeliner, felt tip eyeliner

Anyway, Mirenesse Tight Liner Hydra Gel Eyeliners come in a variety of colours so if you’re keen, hop on over to their website and check them out yourself!  I actually saw this product pop up in a beauty box in a number of blogs so I’m kinda glad I am reviewing this now!  😛

Happy Australia Day to all my Australian readers!  And for my non-Aussie readers, happy Thursday!  Only one more day till the weekend!!!

Beauty Pod Airbrush FX Sponge Is Almost As Awesome As Hello Kitty!

similar to beautyblender

I need to pat myself on the back for making a good decision in purchasing this beauty – Beauty Pod Airbrush FX Sponge – for a grand total of $10!  Oh yes, it’s amazing!  It’s almost as awesome as Hello Kitty!  I’ve wanted one of these make-up sponges ever since I read raving reviews about Beauty Blenders but I was too el cheapo to fork out too much money.  So glad I saw this at IMATS last year!

Before The Beauty Pod Airbrush FX Sponge Entered My Life…

  • I used my fingers to apply my liquid foundation and BB cream.  Works for some people, but not that good for me because the foundation would seep under my nails and curdle up there.
  • Wedged make-up sponges were a waste of money because they would soak up a lot of the liquid foundation and I had a habit of using them once and then dumping them (*insert your own one-night stand joke here*)
  • And I bought a few foundation brushes and tried out a stippling brush, but with the streaks, my face resembled skidmarks my Husband left behind in the porcelain throne after a good Indian curry!  (I think that’s why my toilet went beserk the other day – don’t believe me?  Check out the live recording of the crazy toilet in action!)

Enter The Beauty Pod Airbrush FX Sponge…

  • Flawlessly fantastic foundation and BB cream application!  Also works with stick foundations – and when I used it with my Invisible Zinc foundation, I got a compliment from a girl-friend about my complexion which I credit half to this sponge and the other half to this miracle serum.
  • I also used it yesterday to blend concealer under my eyes and it worked well too.
  • The shape (pointy top and round bottom) of the sponge works well with blending in all areas of my face.
  • The sponge is dense so it doesn’t soak up liquid foundations easily.
  • It’s latex-free (I am allergic to latex) and it can be washed and reused.  (I wash it with the Daiso Sponge Cleaner – magic!!)
  • It also doubles up as stress ball.  Good for times when I get frustrated with applying my falsies and when I want to squeeze something else other than my own excess tummy fat.

Have you tried one of these beauty sponges before?  Do you have excess tummy fat too?  I feel your pain!  ARGH!!!  I’m off to the Gym to do Pilates…wish me luck! 

I Can’t Stop Using Rationale Skincare Essential Six Night Kit!!

rationale skincare australia, essential six

Rationale Skincare Essential Six Night Kit – I’ve used it every night for just under 8 weeks* (7 weeks and 5 days to be precise) and I can’t stop using it!!!  It’s L-O-V-E!  Pure and simple.  I don’t actually want to stop using it but I’m going to have to because I have a shedload of products dying to be trialled and reviewed on the blog.  Anyway, let me tell you why I have fallen in love with Essential Six Night Kit from Rationale Skincare, the bestselling cosmoceutical company in Australia.

Cosmo-what?

Cosmoceutical.  Cosmoceuticals ( = cosmetics + pharmaceuticals) are cosmetic products with biologically active ingredients purporting to have medical or drug-like benefits.  And that is basically what Rationale Skincare have achieved with their products.  They have created products with skin compatible active ingredients which are not watered down due to marketing ploys, i.e. celebrity endorsements (I’m looking at you SK-II Facial Treatment Essence!) and fancy packaging (I must admit that I am a sucker for that!) are expensive for brands, so in order to lower their prices to appeal to the mass market, they may have to reduce the active ingredients which reduces potency and weakens results.

What’s In The Essential Six Night Kit?

Rationale Skincare Australia, retinaldehyde serum

There are 3 products; not 6.  Yep, slightly confusing.  But the Essential Six refers to 3 products in the morning** and 3 products at night.  In the Night Kit, you will find :-

Preparatory Cleanser (200ml) : Gentle cleansing formula with antioxidant vitamins A, B, C and E plus soothing botanicals.
Skin Refining Serum (50ml) : Enhanced exfoliation formula with 18% alpha and beta hydroxy acids to refine skin tone and texture.
Retinaldehyde Serum (15ml) : Skin cells use vitamin A to repair DNA damage and retinaldehyde is a form of vitamin A.  This serum contains 0.1% retinaldehyde – the highest possible concentration for skin which helps revitalise skin tone and texture.

My Thoughts

Brand
Before I started using the products, I did my research on Rationale Skincare by checking out their website and I was impressed with their philosophy.  No BS – I like it!  Not so impressed with the website design with black background and white letters – it hurts my eyes after a while.  I’m just sayin’!

Packaging
Nothing fancy here.  Plain and simple.  But the magic is in the ingredients!

Price & Availability
RRP $325 AUD and can be found in Australia, New Zealand and UK.  Sounds pricey but don’t forget you are getting 3 products in the kit and judging from my usage of 8 weeks, I still have more than half of the contents in each bottle.

Preparatory Cleanser
I use a separate make-up remover followed by a cream cleanser before using this.  Why?  Because I’m just following the instructions which reads “Avoid contact with eyes”.  The smooth creamy texture smells of oranges and leaves face with that squeaky clean and soft feeling.  Big bottle so it’s gonna last me a long time!

Skin Refining Serum
Ouch!  Be prepared!  It sinks into skin and can burn for a good 10 seconds.  It must be all the acid doing its work.  I have noticed that on occasions where I am lazy and skip the Preparatory Cleanser (because I have already used a cream cleanser before that), it doesn’t burn at all.  There’s probably something in the Preparatory Cleanser which works in synergy with the serums…??  Oh and it also smells like oranges too!

Retinaldehyde Serum
I usually slap this on pretty quickly after the Skin Refining Serum to help soothe the burn.  It can also be used around eyes.  And this one doesn’t smell like oranges.  It can be a bit weird not moisturising your face with a cream, but serums are the way to go and they feel very light especially in Summer.

Results

  • Initially, my skin flaked a bit – but I was reassured that this was normal for cell turnover.  By the 2nd week, my skin started to settle and felt nice – smooth and hydrated.
  • I do still get the occasional flaky patches but that’s why exfoliation is important.  As for spots, I don’t get many usually but there have been a couple of stinkers (like the one currently residing on my left cheek).  And I still have blackheads on my nose which provides hours of entertainment as I try to squeeze them all!
  • I told you about my left nasolabial fold which wrinkled up when I stopped using BIOEFFECT EGF Serum – well, this line started dissipating and looked more lifted in the 4th week.  Result!  But it’s weird – some days it comes back to say “Hello” and then, some days it goes on holiday!  I wish it would just disappear altogether.
  • And come the 6th week and I have noticed brightening of my skin tone, a reduction in pore size (okay, pores cannot be reduced in size but they can appear smaller) and get this – this is what really impressed me the most – reduced pigmentation of sun spots!  I kid you not!  My sun spots are fading – slowly but surely!

Now you can see why I can’t stop using Rationale Skincare Essential Six Night Kit!!!

Overall

Forget the other 3-step skincare routine (cleanse, tone and moisturise) and I urge you to adopt Rationale Skincare Essential Six!  I’ve not had much experience with pharmaceutical skincare products (except for a few SkinCeuticals products in my tender years) but I am seriously in love with the results.  And best of all, I know it works because it is scientifically proven and not because Miss Hot Celebrity is paid to say so!

* BTW, if you’re wondering whether I lugged these bottles to Hong Kong, I didn’t.  But that’s because I had wee samples of these which lasted for 1.5 weeks.  Perfect!

** I did try out a sample of the Essential Six Morning Kit too but they lasted me for 1.5 weeks so I wasn’t able to do a full review on that.  But from that 1.5 week trial, my skin felt good!

Note : Oh and I almost forgot, products mentioned in this post were provided for consideration, but this, in no way, affects my opinions.

Ingredient List

Have you tried any of these products before?  Let me know your thoughts.

P.S.  I did promise to try and do a Chinese New Year related post today but I didn’t have time yesterday. Why?  Well, there was a Dragon in my toilet!!  No joke!  Check the dragon and my Hello Kitty glasses out here.

OPI Tune Into Great Nails Featuring Princesses Rule! & Bubble Bath

OPI Princesses Rule!, OPI Bubble Bath, pink nail polish

If you’re a fan of the colour pink, then this duo set of OPI Nail Lacquers will be right up your street!  OPI Tune Into Great Nails features OPI Princesses Rule! and OPI Bubble Bath and comes with free bling-bling earphone covers.

OPI Princesses Rule!

OPI Princesses Rule!, nail swatch

With the exclamation mark in its name, it’s guaranteed that OPI Princesses Rule! will make a statement.  It’s a sparkly shimmery pink shade which you can definitely imagine Disney Princesses wearing this.  Kate Middleton – not so much!  For me, it took 2 coats to provide an opaque finish and like other OPI Nail Lacquers, it was easy to apply even for a clumsy gal like me.

OPI Bubble Bath

OPI Bubble Bath, nail swatch, pale pink
Funnily enough, I can imagine Kate Middleton wearing OPI Bubble Bath on her nails as it is a classic pale pink (similar to the Bourjois pink we both wore for our respective weddings) which gives the impression of healthy, shiny, natural pink nails.  Looking back at the photos, I’ve fallen in love with it all over again and can’t wait to wear OPI Bubble Bath again!

The bling-bling earphone covers will attract teenagers and they easily slip onto my iPhone earphones.  Cannot picture Kate Middleton using these on her iPhone earphones.  Does she even own an iPhone?  One wonders…

Which shade do you prefer?  WWKW – What Would Kate Wear?  Do you think she owns an iPhone?  Do you think she reads beauty blogs?  Do you think I think too much?  I think I do…

P.S. Happy Chinese New Year to all my Chinese readers!  I was going to do a post on it except something went wonky with my scheduling post thing and we have pink nail polish today.  Never mind…maybe it’ll work tomorrow!  🙂

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