Friday, 29 January 2010

January Empties

Benefit Maybe Baby
Laura Mercier Creme Brulee sugar scrub
Biotherm Biosource dermo-soothing cleanser
Natio Spa Organics pep up body bleanser
Kore Intact repairing eye cream
Lancome Genifique
Dior Diorshow Iconic
Fekkai wash and wear instant shampoo spray

Clarins Gentle Eye Make-Up Remover Lotion
Ardell Clear Brow Gel
Ultraceuticals Ultra Milk Cleanser
Neutrogena Deep Clean Cleansing Oil

Yes to Carrots C is Smooth Body Moisturising Lotion
Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Cleanser

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Laura Mercier Creme Brulee Sugar Scrub

I received a travel sized tube of Creme Brulee Sugar Scrub as part of a gwp. I was so excited to get this as I love the scent of Laura Mercier's body products but have never bought a full sized one because of the price.

The best thing about this scrub is the scent, it smells amazing. Apart from the scent there's nothing much that I like about it.

If this was sold as a body wash it'd be pretty good as it's quite moisturising and creamy, however as a body scrub it's totally ineffective. You can see in the picture below there are hardly any sugar scrub particles in it. Due to the lack of particles no matter how much I rub this in it doesn't exfoliate at all. 

Laura Mercier says: Creamy texture removes dead skin cells from the skin's surface. Promotes a radiant, polished glow. Can be used every other day but mild enough for everyday usage

I agree that this is gentle enough to use every day. It'd make a nice shower gel as the fragrance is lovely. The fragrance is quite long lasting too, I can smell it for a few hours after I've had a shower. 

Would I buy it? No, as a body scrub it's totally ineffective.
Ingredients: propylene glycol, glycerin, sucrose, peg-12, dimethicone, isopropyl myristate, fragrance, polyacrylamide, tocopheryl acetate, retinyl palmitate, pyrus malus (apple) fruit extract, camellia oleifera leaf extract, cinnamomum zeylanicum bark extract, beta vulgaris (beet) extract, chamomilla recutita (matricaria) flower extract, rosa canina fruit extract, jasminum officinale (jasmine) extract, panax ginseng root extract, vitis vinifera (grape) seed oil, prunus amygdalus dulcis (sweet almond) oil, bertholletia excelsa seed oil, honey, c13-14 isoparaffin, laureth-7, glycolic acid, phenoxyethanol, propylparaben, titanium dioxide.

Monday, 25 January 2010

Adore Tanning

I've recently discovered a company with amazing customer service so though I'd share the details with you all. It's called Adore Tanning. I hadn't heard of them until I was lucky enough to win a $100 voucher to Adore Tanning on the Bella Sugar website. On a side note, did you know that Bella Sugar has an Australian site now?

I placed my order Wednesday morning. Ten minutes after I'd placed my order they called to confirm my address and the next afternoon when I got home from work the package was waiting on my doorstep. How amazing is that?

Adore Tanning has a great range of Tanning products (who would have guessed). I'll be doing reviews of the products that I got soon. 

Saturday, 23 January 2010

23/01/10 Link Love

theNotice has a three-part video series on how to contour your cheeks - check out the first tutorial here!

MAC Mineralized SatinFinish gives off a beautiful finished look according to Eve's review at xLovelymakeupx.

Marina from MakeUp4All reviews and swatches on the cheeks Illamasqua's Cream Blusher in Rude and Illamasqua's Lipstick in Over.

Lipglossiping asks if the modern age has spawned demon digital artists.

This week, Louise wonders if the nude lip is all it's cracked up to be

Krasey Beauty takes you back to school with Skincare 101

Head over to Beautifully Glossy to check out L'oreal's Studio Secrets Resurfacing Primer.

It's Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago, so check out some makeup looks inspired by some of the costumes!

Jellyminx swatches her cream eyeshadows!

Lisamarie at Beauty Crazed visits the Benefit Brow Bar for the 15 minutes that changed her life.

Sarah over at I Heart Cosmetics has found a really cool new invention for your makeup brushes!

Liparazzi has found the perfect concealer to brighten up her life, put a boi-ing in her step and Benefit her on her wedding day.

Jo over at Music & Make Up is having a one year anniversary giveaway.

Lisa Kate from Sparkle is my Crack! shows you how to look like a Cheer Bear!

The Makeup Snob shares her opinions on a couple of  NYX lip and eye palettes.

Friday, 22 January 2010

Diorshow Iconic Mascara

I got a small sized Diorshow Iconic somehow (don't remember if it was with a magazine or a free sample). Anyhow, I've been using it for the last three months and was rather sad to see it go, although not sad enough that I'd go out and buy it. 

Dior says: Inspired by professional catwalk techniques and Dior couture expertise,the new Diorshow Iconic mascara is definitely innovative, offering a spectacular lash curling effect.

A Dior exclusive innovation for a revolutionary oblique brush.The incredibly soft elastomer brush features slanted bristles to capture each lash one by one.

The patented angled brush is replicating emblematic couture techniques:
oblique lines and the bias cut, an art of fabric cutting that magnifies curves and amplifies spread. In one quick stroke, with no special application method necessary, the brush acts like a brushing on lashes.

Enriched with a unique lifting formula, Diorshow Iconic sculpts, stretches and curves the lashes with extreme hold and high definition.
I don't find that Iconic gives me any long lasting curling effects. It makes my lashes look long and full but the curling effect goes away after about ten minutes. The curl that you can see in the top picture is how my lashes look straight after I've applied Iconic. Aside from the lack of long term curling it's a nice mascara. It lasts all day without smudging or flaking and gives me lush looking lashes.
Would I buy it? No. It's a nice mascara but there are cheaper ones that do just as good a job.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

My Favorite Make-up Application Tip

I don't know about everyone else but one of the products that I have a lot of trouble applying is concealer. I either can't get enough coverage of my dark circles or I get too much coverage and so look like I have the eyes of an eighty year old. 

The best (and easiest) make-up tip I've ever learned is relating to concealer application. Instead of rubbing on concealer apply it with a brush or your fingers, let it settle for about a minute then gently press it into the skin. If you find you need mover coverage put some concealer onto your finger and press it on. You can keep doing this until you get the coverage that you need. Don't pat or rub, just press gently, then set with a light dusting of powder.

Doing this makes a huge difference. Since I've been applying my concealer this way it looks so much better. I get the coverage I need without it sinking into my fine lines and making me look awful.

Monday, 18 January 2010

Addicted 2 Lip Balm

I recently discovered a wonderful new online store called Addicted 2 Lip Balm. It's an Australian store that's all about lip products. Due to the tortuous and never ending Post and Shame Challenge I haven't been able to place an order with Addicted 2 Lip Balm yet, but as soon as my torture is over this is the first place I'll be visiting.

The lovely Leah from Addicted 2 Lip Balm agreed to answer some questions for me so read on to learn more.

When did you first become addicted to lip products?
I have used lip balms and glosses for as long as I can remember but it was when I started working at 14 years old I had the money to feed my addiction.

What are your top 3 lip products?
This is such a hard question! At the moment I would have to say Lanolips, Chapstick Naturals and DuWop Venom Gloss.

What lip product do you think everyone should try?
Everyone should try a lip scrub (I like The Lip Scrub by Sara Happ) and a plumper (like DuWop Venom). Results will vary between people but your lips will be nice and smooth. I also think people should persist until they find a lip balm that is perfect for “their lips” because peoples lips and tastes are so different!

What products do you recommend for men?
I think men should use a lip scrub like Shizen Sugar Lip Scrub, even if they can use it once a fortnight it will make a difference. They should also use a lip balm every day with SPF I would recommend Anthony Logistic. Their lips will be so much more inviting if they are soft!

What’s the best tasting lip product you’ve tried?
Morgan Annie lip scrubs would have to be the best tasting. But when it comes to smell Botani wins hands down. It’s a yummy sweet vanilla scent that is truly divine. Urban Rituelle Beachcomber Lip Glamour in Ruby Mango has a lovely fresh mango fragrance. Smith’s Rosebud in Mocha Rose is also very nice.

What products do you never leave home without?
I never leave home without a tube of tinted Lanolips (Rose is my favourite), Dr Bronner organic lip balm, DuWop Lip Venom and Suvana Bio Gloss (it has a nice shimmer that you can wear alone or over any lipstick or balm). If I’m going to be away for more than a few days I always take a lip scrub and a pot of Shizen lip conditioner.

When did you start Addicted 2 Lip Balm and what were the reasons you started it?
I started Addicted 2 Lip Balm in 2009 because I was so frustrated at the lack of variety and accessibility to lip care products. I was forever searching for something different. My dream has always been to have a “one stop shop” for lip care.

What has been your proudest moment since you started Addicted 2 Lip Balm?
I am always proud when customers tell me how much they love Addicted 2 Lip Balm. I also feel proud when editors ring and ask for my advice and opinion on lip care and lip care product.

Any new and exciting products you can tell us about?
We have just added Smith's Rosebud Salve in a tube to our range (only place in Australia you can get it from). 
Balm Balm is an organic multi purpose range of balms from the UK that come in tubes and pots.
Cake Beauty lip balms from Canada are all natural and come in 4 scrumptous flavours, also only available in Australia at Addicted 2 Lip Balm.

Current offers at Addicted 2 Lip Balm:
Receive $10 off your order by using the discount redemption code "NEW YEAR" at checkout to received the $10.

Free Gift Offer: Spend over $60 you will receive a free gift of Palmer's Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Lip Butter.

Free Shipping: Free postage within Australia for orders over $30. This will be applied automatically at checkout.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

L'oreal Studio Secrets Smoothing Resurfacing Primer

I was very excited when I opened my second Primped VIP package and found this as I've been wanting to try something from L'oreals Studio Secrets line. The Studio Secrets line was inspired by and created in collaboration with Linda Evangalista. According to L'oreal the first five secrets of studio make-up are:
A perfect skin surface.
A uniform skin tone.
A flawless complexion.
Glorious eyes and
Sublime lips.

Smoothing Resurfacing Primer is secret number one and is designed to create a perfect skin surface.

As you can see in the pictures Smoothing Resurfacing Primer is a pale pink colour in the pot but goes on clear. I use this around my eyes and on my t-zone. It does a great job of hiding my large pores, once I've put this on my skin looks smooth and flawless. Whilst it doesn't totally hide my fine lines it does make them a lot less noticeable. 

One of the best things about this primer is that it doesn't need long to settle. Other primers I use need at least five minutes to settle but this one only needs seconds. I pat it onto the problem areas and then then apply my foundation 30 seconds later. 

When I use this my make-up stays put all day. The place that it performs miracles is under my eyes. It makes my concealer go on smoothly, helps it last all day without fading and stops it sinking into my fine lines. I would buy Smoothing Resurfacing Primer for this purpose alone.

L'oreal says: Inspired by professional make-up, the Smoothing Resurfacing Primer is an invisible primer for a soft, smooth and instant zero defect skin. The primer masks wrinkles and uneven textures in the skin, making it incredibly smooth and soft with a remarkable velvety touch. Thanks to its high elastomer content this primer confers an astonishingly smooth texture and a remarkable ability to disguise wrinkles and open pores. The combination of soft yet light powders gives a matte look with a silky finish. Applying the primer is made easy and pleasant through the addition of a slippery silicon oil that leaves no greasy redisue. Used alone or under foundation, this primer guarantees a perfect complexion every time. 
Result: wrinkles smoothed, open pores and lines disguised, skin becomes smooth and even textured. 

In the picture above the primer is on the right side of my hand. It's a bit difficult to tell, but the skin on that side of my hand looks smoother and isn't shiny.

Studio Secrets Smoothing Resurfacing Primer costs $39.95. Whilst the pot looks small a little goes a long way so with daily use I'd estimate that it would last at least four months.

Would I buy this? Yes, it's a lovely, effective product.

Ingredients: cyclohexasiloxane, dimethicone, dimethicone/vinyl dimethicone corsspolymer, silica, acrylates copolymer, disodium stearoyl glutamate, aluminium hydroxide. 

Monday, 11 January 2010

Post and Shame Challenge Update

I'm still doing really well. I've finished two lip balms and gotten rid of four balms, two that I didn't like, one that had gone funny and one that was over five years old. I'm no closer to finishing any eye liners than I was at the start of this challenge but I'm working on it. When I started this I knew that finishing lip balms wasn't going to be a problem and it hasn't been. 

I've gone shopping and looked at lip balms and eye liners but haven't bought anything. I haven't even been tempted. The closest I got was when I used up my John Masters Organics Lip Calm. It's my favorite balm ever and I wanted to get a replacement, so I went and looked at my huge stash of balms and reminded myself that I don't need another balm. 

Once I've significantly reduced my stash I'll go and get Lip Calm, but until then there's no point adding another balm to my collection.

Saturday, 9 January 2010

09/01/10 Link Love

theNotice is hosting a New Year's giveaway with lots of discontinued or hard-to-find items, and everyone has three chances to win!

Priminition, an expose on primers - over at Jeweled Thumb

A go-to 
neutral purple-beige look from Maggie at The Polka-Dotted Apple!

Krasey Beauty warms it up for winter with a golden
makeup look using Chanel's Spring 2010 collection

This week at I Heart Cosmetics Sarah has been loving  Mac's warm and cozy collection

Vex in the City explains why Dr Hauschka Rose Day Cream is all she needs to beat her winter blues

Amy over at Yoetke Beauty Blog is taking L'Oreal's 4-Week Lashboost Challenge!

Arianne can't stop raving about her holy grail foundation (OMG!) on Glitter Geek.

Lisa Kate has some Sparkle Approved Mineral Makeup Companies to share with you!

LiAnn asks what beauty products you tried that made you say "meh" 

Retrodiva wants to know what your signature fragrance is!

Jellyminx Thinks swatches Sleek Eyeshadow palettes

Hot Beauty Health share some sexy haircolor ideas to start the new year off fresh!

Over at Lipglossiping this week, Charlotte contemplates life with triangle hair.

This week at Get Lippie, Louise tries out a Scarlet Johanssen-style makeover.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Friday, 8 January 2010

Project Ten Pan Version Two

I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm going to do Project 10 Pan (PTP) again. I really don't want to but as I have so many lip products to get rid of I'm going to join Lollipop26 and do PTP Take Two.

This time I'll be focusing on lipglosses and lipsticks. I'm not including lip balms as they are already part of my Post and Shame Challenge.

I've got some products that I want to use up (shown below) but I'll also use whatever I feel like and hopefully it won't take me very long to finish ten products.

I"m making one exception to this challenge and allowing myself to buy MAC's Baby Sparks Dazzleglass because I've already asked for one to be put on hold for me when they are back in stock. That's the only lip product I'm allowing myself to buy though.

Once I start this challenge it'll mean that I can't buy any lip products at all so I'm not sure how I'll manage it. I might have to beg Mr GQ to buy things for me.

I suppose it's a good way for me to start heading towards my minimal collection goal.

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

What my ideal stash looks like

I've decided that 2010 is going to be the year of minimalism for me. I plan to reduce the amount of clutter that I have in my life and that includes my make-up and skin care. I know it's going to take a while, but this is where I aim to end up. 

Skin care:

3 cleansers; 1 oil based to remove my make-up, 1 gentle enough to use every day in the shower, 1 deep cleanser to use a few times a week.
1 eye make-up remover
1 face scrub
1 pimple treatment
1 face serum
2 eye creams; 1 hydrating for day and 1 anti ageing for night
5 face moisturisers; 1 light day cream, 1 hydrating day cream, 1 hydrating night cream, 1 anti ageing night cream, 1 tinted moisturiser
1 face mist
1 sunscreen
3 face masks; 1 hydrating, 1 mud/clay and 1 anti ageing
1 mattifier

5 to 10 Lip balms

Body care:

1 body scrub
1 shower gel
1 body oil
2 body lotions; 1 firming and 1 hydrating

1 tinted/shimmery body lotion
1 hand cream
1 deodorant
1 bronzer
1 sunscreen

Hair care:
2 shampoos; 1 hydrating and 1 volumising

1 conditioner
1 deep conditioning treatment
1 leave in conditioner
1 volumiser/root lifter

1 hairspray
1 hair refresher


3 to 5  bottles


This is where it gets difficult as I'm not sure how many products would be ideal so I'm just going to take a guess.

2 foundations; 1 hydrating, 1 oil free

2 face powders; 1 pressed, 1 mineral powder

1 concealer
1 primer

5 lipsticks; nude, pink, mauve, red, beige

6 lip glosses; clear, nude, pink, mauve, red, beige

1 lip plumper

20 eye shadows in various colours

9 eyeliners; taupe, brown, grey, green, navy, purple, burgundy, white, silver

2 blush; pinky mauve, nude

3 lip liners; nude/pink, red, clear

2 lip tints; 1 pink and 1 burgundy

2 mascaras; 1 everyday and 1 dramatic

2 shimmer powders; 1 for all over and a pinky one for cheeks

1 bronzer

Monday, 4 January 2010

A great mail day

I had a great mail day, look at all the lovelies I got.

My second Primped VIP Club package arrived so look out for the reviews coming up soon. I also got a prize that I won on Spicy Pink Sugar, Too Faced World Domination palette. If you haven't read Yvette's blog have a look, it's great. And I got a sample of John Frieda's Overnight Repair.

Friday, 1 January 2010

My Beauty Resolutions for the New Year

I'm not usually one for New Years Resolutions as I don't see the point in setting myself up to fail, so I usually resolve not to make any resolutions. This year I thought I'd make some beauty resolutions. And to help keep myself honest I'm posting them on here.

Use up more of the products that I currently have,
Buy less make-up, skin care and hair care,
Find a good facial skin care routine and stick to it,
Find a good body care routine and stick to it,
Drastically reduce the size of my lip product stash,
Make significant progress towards reducing down to my ideal stash size.

Wish me luck!