Friday, 30 November 2012

Review: Shellac Nails

So i had a few events going on this past week and next week (graduation and early Christmas parties)  and my nails had been looking fairly ragged lately; for whatever reason my nails don't like to bend when they have nail polish on them so they tend to snap underneath the polish.  I really did not want to deal with it, so when mum suggested we go get our nails done i figured why not. I'd really never had an proper manicure done or anything else like that so it seemed like a fun thin to try, and maybe give me a break from my nails for a bit.

So i ended up getting a manicure and shellac nails; Shellac is for the most part a acrylic gel polish that is painted straight onto the nail and dries hard like a fake nail under UV lamps. Proper Shellac nails can only be done at a Salon as CMD only licenses the products to Salon and not for individual sale.

It was quite a fun experience; it took about 30-45 minutes (including the manicure) and consisted of two oats of polish, top coat and cuticle oil at the end. Between each set you put your hand under the UV lamps for about 5-8 minutes. There wasn't a huge color choice (about 30 colors) but i went with a shimmery blue called Midnight Swim.

Midnight Swim

As you can see the finish is very shiny, and the texture feels like gel nails but can feel a little wavy on some of my nails, not sure if this is the skill of the nail tech or simply a side effect of the product. It's pretty damn durable and is supposed to last two weeks without issues and i know some people even stretch it out to a month or so before regrowth shows up to ruin it too badly.

I don't think i would do this every month but it's quite good if you need a break from your nails or are having a hectic schedule. The best part is definitely the fact that the moment you leave the salon your nails are rock hard and you don't have to have any worries about smudges or touching anything.

To remove it you either go back to the salon or use acetone based remover like you would on glitter nails; acetone soaked cotton balls wrapped in foil and leave for 5 -10 minutes.

Overall I'm pretty happy but i think i like changing nail polishes too much to stick with a single color for two weeks unless i have a lot of other stuff on my mind. Have you tried it? What did you think?

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Revlon Lip Balms Stains finally arrive in Australia

Finally, these have finally made their way down to our shores. (Previous review here) so to celebrate this i thought i would do a second review on a few more colors i picked up, also Priceline is currently doing a 2 for 1 deal on all Revlon products so hopefully this might help some people out who might be sitting on the fence about the price (17.95 each).

So in addition to the fairly neutral Honey and the two dark pinks i picked up earlier i decided to get something in the more red range as I've been interested in trying to wear more red lip "stuff". In this vein i initially picked up Romantic (with my priceline munny voucher yay) and really really liked how wearable it was as a red shade, just slightly on the orange spectrum it really just shows up as a true red when the color wears and is replaced by the stain.

Since i saw that there was the 2 for 1 deal i was very tempted by the other red shade "Adore" but wasn't too sure what other one to pick up. However the lovley swatches over at "sleep and water" convinced me that Precious was the obvious choice, and i am not sorry.

Romantic | Adore | Precious

I'm totally in love with Precious so I've neglected Adore a little bit, but its basically a deeper more purple tinted red. These ones also don't seem to be as drying as i initially found Honey to be, i think in the end it was my lips bad condition that was causing the issue not the balm itself. So these are really winning me over now, they are so easy to use and carry around. I keep Honey in my pencil case at school :)

So if you haven't tried these yet, now is a great time to find out.

BTW on a more personal note i graduated today so there should be more regular posts from this week on :)

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Purple Shiny Mani

Hello just a quickie today; this is the mani I've been sporting all week and it's only now just starting to fall apart. This is NFU 51 over A England Avalon and i must say it's quite a gorgeous combination.

More specifically this is 2 coats of Avalon (first coat is a little thin) and 2 coats of NFU, one would probably have been fine too but i was going for something a little more bang. I never really thought i would get my hands on any of the NFU stuff till i saw Crush cosmetics ships them now and i was sold. Out of the entire range i think this is the most beloved and i think it's clear why.

I've tried it over Revlon Royal and it's also pretty awesome, kind of like a super ramped up version of mystic fire, just with flakes rather then glitter but same sort of color pay off. 

I'm also very pleased with Avalon, in  fact the entire A-England range i got has treated me very well, not sure if I'm as interested in their new stuff though, it's all very very dark, but their re-release of holy grail might just be the clincher.

In other news i'm almost done with my school stuff, so regular posts should be back soon :)

Friday, 16 November 2012

My Makeup Storage

I always enjoy seeing how other people deal with storing/handling their makeup stash, therefore since i have recently reached what i feel might be the zenith of what one of my drawers can hold it seemed like a good time to share.

My makeup used to fit into my side of the bathroom cabinet but shortly before i started blogging my collection was...overflowing into my boyfriends side of things, so after doing a bit of research i picked up a clear plastic set of drawers from Officeworks, i believe it cost around $20 and also came in white.

So the first drawer contains my eyeshadows and blushes. The ones visible here are;

Maybeline Eye Tattoos (5) | Essence Cream Eyeshadows (2) | Essence Powder Eyeshadows (4) |
Essence Cream Blushes (2) | Burjois Blushes (2) | Essence Powder Blushes (1) | NARS blush (1) | BD Blush (1) | Revlon Eyeshadow Set (1) | Prestige Eyeshadow Set (2) | Chi Chi Eyeshadow Pigments (1)

There is also a Australis red eyeshadows set underneath the Revlon. 

Second drawer is for all things lipsticks, lipgloss, lipliner, eyeliners, mascaras and those sorts of things. The lipsticks that live here are ones that are currently out of my main rotation or are too dark or too something for everyday wear. Here is what we can see;

Korres concealer pen (1) | Face of Australia lip crayons (2) | Revlon just Bitten Kissable Lip Balms (3) | NYX Lip Creams (2) | Essence Lip Creams (2) | Essence Lip Gloss (2) | Essence Lipstick (1) |Revlon Lipstick (1) | Sportsgirl Lipstick (1) | Wet n Wild Lipstick (1) | Revlon Lipbutters (2) | Avon Lipstick (1) | Revlon Mascara (1) | Essence Mascrara (1) | Burjois Mascara (1) | Essence Eyeshadow Primer (1)| Maybeline Mascara (1) | Essence Eyeliners (2) | Essence Lipliner (3) |Lipsmacker Gloss (2)

Drawer 3 is th one that I'm looking to change up, my house and bathroom is quite tiny so I've been trying to think up a better way to store these. For now however my brushes and random nick-nacks live here.

Here we have

Real Techniques Blush Brush (1) | Eco Tools Brushes (6) | Chi Chi Brushes (2) | Random Unknown Brushes (4) | Burjois Puff (1) Essence Eyebrow kit (1) | Essence Gel Eyeliner (1) | Korres Eyeshadow (1) | Essence eyebrow brush (1) | Ecotools Brush Travel bag (1)

Lastly we have th Foundation and Powder drawer that also takes whatever is too weird a size for the other drawers.

Lush Emotional Brilliance Collection (8) | Chi Chi Translucent Powder (1) | Essence Concealer (1) | Burjois concealer (1) | Physician's Formula Face Powder (3) | Chi Chi Kabuki Brush (1) | Foundation Sponge (1) | Revlon Powder (1) | Garnier BB Cream (2) | Covergirl Blush (1) |Burjois Flower Foundation (1) | Watsons BB Cream (1) | Essence Eyeshadow Set (1) | Essence Eyeshadow pigments (2) | Burjois Primer (1) | BD Primer (1)

Annnnnnd..... last but not least is my main lipstick stand and my lip balms next to the case. The one i currently use the most; Lancome Rose Defile, Revlon Soft Rose, Lipstick Queen Medieval, NYX Saturn and Tea rose, Mac Creme de la Femme, Rimmel 21, and two random Revlon colors in caramel and plum.

The lip balms sitting there are Haus if Gloi Spun Sugar and Korres Quince and Wild Rose.

So that's most of my stuff, there are other bits and pieces that float around the house, lip balms especially and a few other favorites in my purse/makeup bag. S

o if you see anything you wanna know more about drop a comment, or if you have another cool storage post/video i would love to see it!

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Review: Essence A Piece of Forever

This little pretty is A Piece of Forever from the new Breaking Dawn 2 trend edition from Essence (reviewed here). From all the polishes in the collection this is probably the one i was both most excited about and most concerned about; metallic nail polishes that aren't glitter or foil are well known to be....finicky. They commonly have a very thin formula and leave brush/streak marks.

As you can see i didn't have much to worry about. The formula was pretty damn good for a metallic finishes, a little thin but not exceedingly so; the photo above is 3 coats but 2 would probably have been enough. 

The streak marks are probably the least visible of any metallic I've ever tried. It's a very soft color that's quite reflective, it catches even small bits of light and looks quite glow-y. I think this is a gorgeous color and i think it's so soft you could even get away with it at work. 

Monday, 12 November 2012

Review: Watsons BB Collagen Cream

Today, something a little different. This is Watson's Collagen BB Cream which Mum picked up for me when she was over in Singapore earlier this year and it;s taken me a while to figure out my opinion on this product. But with the advent of warmer days an opinion has solidified and is ready for your consumption. 

I don't know a huge amount about the back story of this product so here is what i do know; It seems to retail for around $20 AUD and you can find it pretty easy on ebay but i have not been able to find local retailers for it. 

and.... here is an English description i found for it:

"Watson both natural collagen multi-effect BB cream skin care, isolation, Cover the three functions. Small deep-sea fish collagen molecules containing activity, instant supplement for skin collagen, helps to increase skin elasticity and compaction. Tie in with the natural plant oil such as jojoba oil moisturizing ingredients, not Pan-oily makeup skin after long time. Effective protection of the skin at the same time render bright stereo nude natural makeup effects. \”Natural color\” for colour white to colour moderate crowd. After the skin clean and basic nursing, smear BB cream, on cheeks, forehead, nose, Chin back on both sides, down the skin texture from inside to outside lay open to the entire face and neck (recommends don\’t ring once), and then gently flapping, making BB cream and skin more fitting.

Measuring effectiveness: cream-like texture while absorbed slowly, to stain level of Cover is not very satisfactory, but on the pores of the shelter is still pretty good, waterproof and oil is also very good, and better improve skin color and skin, so that the skin becomes even rich luster, natural, skin becomes smooth and delicate. Instant water capacity was also praised."  source

It goes on a bit tough which is why i am only now doing the review for it, it has now that ts warmed up a little become much much easier to use. It's medium/light coverage with a dewy finish as you can see above. I have quite fallen in love with it, it has a faint smell that i find quite pleasant; a sort of sweet mix of sun screen and baby powder. 

It's quite a different creature to the Garnier BB creams i usually use and this i like a little better now that's its warmer as it sits quite lightly and i don't really notice it. A little setting powder and it stays on all though my school day. Even without setting powder it has pretty good staying powder and keep that nice luminous look to it.

If this was a little easier to purchase i would totally do so, however i think i ill try some other ones to see if there is a perfect bb cream out there. If not this is a good one, if you can get it.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Essence Eyeshadows Overview

Continuing with my love of Essence i thought i might show off some of their eyeshadow, some from their core line and some from trend editions to give you an idea what they are like.

I have in the last few month's acquired quite a few of these; so here's a little run down of what is included; 

1. "Ready for Boarding" Eyeshadow Palette in 01 beauty on tour
2. "50's Girls Reloaded"  Eyeshadow  Duo in 03 come on board captain
3. "Ballerina Collection" 02 Eyeshadow soufflé in 02 pas des copper
4. Core Collection Eyeshadow in "Shimmer" (red)
5. Core Collection Eyeshadow in "Cappuccino, please" (beige)  
6.  Core Collection Eyeshadow in " Mystic Purple" (silver/purple holo)

1.  This one has gotten a bit of hat for not being pigmented enough but with a good base i find it works very well, because they are pastel colors they do have a bit of fall out but not so much that it all disappears. Great for spring and summer, you can get some really nice effects with these and i have found them to stay on most of the day (8 hrs) without fading too much.

2. The 50s collection had some nice eyeshadow duo's, sadly i only found one as it was a very limited release here,  the gold is a very creamy and buttery sort of shadow which goes on very silky while the blue has a bit more fallout but the color more then makes up for it. These are nowhere near as chalky or pale as the previous collections and are much more pigmented (one swatch above) but i find they stay on a bit less (maybe 6 hrs rather then 8) and don't fade quite as cleanly, these ones leave more obvious bold spots.

1. Shimmer | 2. Cappuccino, please! | 3. Mystic Purple | 4. Pas Des Copper

Essence Pas Des Copper compared to the Maybelline Eye Tattoos. 

3. Pas Des Copper i have talked about endlessly before, it's the only creme eyeshadow from 
Essence I've so far come across and it's a dream in everyday; long lasting, non creasing, smooth and easy application; it doesn't catch on skin or melt off in heat. It everything you want or will ever need in an eyeshadow including amazing color pay off. Sadly it was a trend edition, can only hope for more in the same formula.

4/5/6. The Core line is pretty damn solid for the price tag; you'll find some gems and some duds but mostly you'll find good quality for a most reasonable price.

Shimmer as you can see i have used a lot, it recently made for some great makeup for a Halloween costume and stayed on all night through some hefty company and heat. It's not hugely pigmented but for a red on your eyes ou probably don't want it to be. It will build nicely however if that's the look your going for, Slightly on the chalky side however.

Cappuccino, please! is a wonderful, soft and nicely pigmented honey beige that i have seen others compare as a dupe for MAC's very popular "Shroom".  I don't own Shrrom so i can't judge that but its a point to keep in mind; great for neutral looks, base color or eyebrow highlight. Great everyday eyeshadow, can't recommend it more.  (The pan in the picture is new as i had to replace my old one)

Mystic Purple, my very first eyeshadow from Essence; i was lured by the holo claims and also the crazy color on this thing. It's not really holo but it is a duochrome. As you can see in the pan it looks like a silvery-lavender but on the swatch it shines through with a lovely iridescent lilac. Not greatly pigmented but very easy to apply and a lovely color, just be sure to use a eyeshadow base for this one.

So if you haven't yet i strongly suggest giving these a try, at the very least try Cappuccino! For $3 you can't really go wrong! Also if your lucky enough to have it go give you  Pas Des Copper eyeshadow a little hug :) 

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Essence Breaking Dawn 2 Trend Haul

Yay for per-sheduled posts; since i did not want to disappear completely this month; either due to too much work or panic attack from too much work i though this was the best path to take.

So by now I'm sure you know my love for all thing's Essence; and it took me a bit longer then i like to get my hands on this and some of the new polish bottles but good things come to those who wait, and those who stalk the Essence counters like prey.

So I ended up getting most of the stuff i thought i would plus a few additions and alterations;

I only got two polishes; 02 Jacob's Protection and 03 A Piece of Forever. I found the black very similar to Black Galaxy which i already had a dupe of anyway. I'm still considering the purple and might go back for it but upon testing 02 the formula appears very thick.

I got the purple pigment and the gold one like i thought and I'm happy with that but I've never used pigments before so there will probably be some trial and error with these. The other two again seemed very very dark and i wasn't sure if the color would come through too muddy.


The blush was a no question for me and i was surprised that it was a powder not a creme like the last two Essence collections, it's a dark kind of brownish red that is actually very reminiscent of blood so appropriate in that regard. It's very pigmented and will take some blending to get right but a lovely addition to the collection.

I surprised myself with the highlighter powder but it occurred to be i have nothing similar to this and though why not, it looks like fun. I'm such a sucker for Essence but swatching so far it seems like it highlights in a nice golden tone not a shiny silvery one which i think will go much nicer for the summer.

The last solid purchase was the lip gloss which i got for the scent mostly, it smells like candy and the application is super smooth and only the tiniest bit sticky at first, choose the red not the purple as the purple looked very blue tinted and despite my recent enjoyment of Walking Dead i did not want to look like one.

Lastly the somewhat fail purchase, the glitter eyeliner, not sure what i was thinking there i bearly use eyeliner anyway and i have no idea how to apply a glitter one without it just looking a bit random. I can only say i was lured in by the pretty packaging. 

By the way, this post went live today because Target is today releasing their catalog with this trend edition listed within it's pages; meaning all Target stores should now have it in stock.

Happy Hunting :)

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Most Reached for October 2011

Despite my absence this month (which will somewhat continue until my grad show on November 29) i still managed to get a few favorites in, and because of a lack of time three are returns from last month. So let's get to it;

Lush Rose Jam Body Wash(Limited Edition): Only one maybe two washes left and it will be gone forever. Not sure i can bring myself to do it. I can only hope it makes a return one day.

Haus of Gloi Pumpkin Butter in Ghost Puffs: Reviewd Here. Still just as awesome as last month, and totally in theme for Halloween. The whipped soap and perfume will probably make next month's post nut they arrived a little late to be included this month, plus i didn't have a huge amount of opportunity to wear it.

Haus of Gloi Lip Balm in Spun Sugar: Reviewed Here Smell of candy floss i have found it be be my most reached for gloss when my lips need a bit of r&r, which with looming graduation, portfolio printing, typography competitions etc etc they have been in sore need of as i tend to bite my lip when i get stressed.

NYX Round lipstick in Saturn: Probably my new favorite lipstick, i bought it at the same time as the NYX Lip Creames but was so taken by those that i barely tried this and this month it has been a savior. Rushing around this was my go to lipstick almost everyday and i can't say enough about the color; it's a lovely frosted berry color with the slightest hint of gold. This slight metallic hint gives this lipstick a wonderful 3d effect on the lips and it stays on 6 hrs plus. Will definable repurchase, Massive surprise here.

Essence Lash & Brow Gel Mascara: This has been a lifesaver this month where lots of pictures have been taken for end of year catalogs and such and these do a perfect job of keeping your eyebrows nice looking and not feel crunchy.

Essence Pas de Copper: Reviewed Here.  Best best best eyeshadow, stays on for years and years, super soft to apply (much more so then the eye tattoos) and i would love to see more of these. This will probably my go to eyeshadow for a long time to come)