Sunday, April 11, 2010

St. Ives Body Polish - Priceline steal!!



An absolute bargain for AUD 3.99 marked down from 9.99 at Priceline stores in Oz. I love St. Ives' Apricot scrub which I use to exfoliate my face and feet and I was pretty sure I would love this as well.

What does it do?

It is an in-shower body exfoliating body polish (226 gms) with Oatmeal and Shea butter extracts. It also has natural sugar crystals which help in gentle exfoliation. It actually foams up into this smooth texture in the shower which was a pleasant surprise.

Why I love it?

It smells quite nice just like Shea butter and the sugar crystals dissolve with use. Before using this I had some flaky skin on my legs but in just one use I felt smooth and moisturized. I even skipped my body lotion after this. I now use it in a warm shower before going to bed. I find that I sleep better after with its subtle scent and with moisturized skin. I use this only twice a week though and make sure I don't get water into it.

Do you have any favourite St. Ives products?

Friday, April 9, 2010

High end vs Drugstore black eyeliner swatches

From wikipedia "Kohl has been worn traditionally as far back as the Bronze age (3500 B.C. onward) by the Egyptian queens". Looking through my stash I found a few different brands of black eyeliners so I decided to swatch them to see if there was really a difference in colour between them.

Swatches of black eyeliners on NC42 skin

1- Lacome's Le Crayon Khol
2- MUFE aqua eyes in 0L
3- Urban Decay 24/7 pencil in Zero
4- MAC Kohl power eye pencil in Feline
5- Prestige Waterproof eyeliner in Black
6- Urban Decay 24/7 pencil in Oil Slick
7- NYX Jumbo eyeshadow pencil in Black Bean

Verdict: Definite colour differences in the intensity of black. Feline which is supposedly the "blackest black" wins the same title in my stash (I read Stila's Black Onyx wears better than Feline but I don't own it so can't make a comparison). Prestige Waterproof eyeliner in Black is surprising darker than both MUFE and UD which I did not expect.

Overall wear: My eyes are quite watery and I under no circumstances can wear a eyeliner that is not waterproof. I prefer UD Zero to MUFE 0L as it lasts longer on my waterline with far less smudges. Oil slick is great for lining the upper lash on night's out when I feel like a bit of sparkle :). Surprisingly, Feline lasts fairly long on my waterline and even though the difference in intensity in quite subtle in the swatches in real life I feel my eyes stand out more with Feline. Lancome's Kohl was one of my first black eyeliner's but I don't reach for it very often (if at all) as being a kohl it smudges very easily on me.

Personal winners: UD Zero and MAC Feline would be enough to fulfill my black eyeliner needs.The former for my waterline and the latter for smudgy smokey dark intense eyes.

Oily T-Zone gone forever

I have a pretty oily T-zone which especially flares up during night's out and lets just say is not aesthetically pleasing!

To my rescue comes MAC's blot powder, blotting papers and my favourite Mr. 182!


How I use them: After setting my foundation, and spraying my face with a mist of Fix+ spray I lightly dust MAC's blot powder in Medium dark in my oily prone areas with Mr. 182 (His afro is very soft!). Some people find that the blot powder goes on a bit too thick and cakey for them but I have not had a problem yet. The makeup poof (that's what I call it) that comes with the blot powder is quite useless to me. I never carry my makeup with me except for maybe lipgloss as I expect it to last all night and it usually does! For touch ups I carry a few Korean brand blot papers with me.

How cute is the packing? :)



After all that search.. these three things keep the oilyness away!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

NYX cream blush in natural

I do not think I am a brand snob. I love a great bargain & drugstore find but my recession-friendly goodies often get ignored for their shinier and more expensive counterparts. One of the few drugstore items that I use for an everyday look is the NYX cream blush in Natural (please excuse the photo.. cream blushes can get a bit messy). It looks like a soft pink in the pan with definate peachyness as well.

NYX cream blush in Natural (No flash)

Left- Swipe of blush, Right- Blended on NC 42 skin

As you can see the blush blends really well into the skin and as it name proclaims it gives a nice natural and youthful flush. The finish is a bit dewy and matte at the same time if that makes any sense. I prefer using my fingers to blend it in along my cheekbones and only use very little. I have had this for a while now and it has now become part of my daily routine.

Do you have any NYX favourites? I would love to hear about your drugstore gem!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Why I added another beauty blog to the world

There are a few reasons why I started blogging:

1. To have a place to do my vain thing without giving the automatic impression of being shallow and superficial - I tried sharing my love and passion for makeup and all things beauty with family & friends but that did not work out well. I believe that people who have mastered the skill of makeup are artists in their own right.. skin being their canvas.

2. When I started out experimenting with makeup there were not too many blogs by darker skin-toned ladies like myself. According to my online research Blankety was supposed to be the perfect nude for me ("I-just-ate-concealer-and-it-tasted-yummy" lips anyone?). So I wanted someplace that I could literally catalogue my makeup trials and triumphs, spending (yikes!) and lemmings (yay!) and perhaps in doing so be helpful to someone asking the same questions I did.

3. To become a part of the wonderful beauty community I admired- Everyone is so eager to offer advice, share their skill and lets be honest.. to drool over swatches online :)

With that I'll leave you with a swatch

Petticoat MSF - WOC Review and swatches (In the groove collection)

Well... first things first.. FINALLY after all the whining, prayers and even petitions (yes I found a link on google) MAC is re-releasing Stereorose after 5 long years. I have read so so much about this MSF and I think it is part of the holy trinity of collectable MSFs apart from Pleasureflush and Metal Rock. Everyone and their mum is in line for this baby and I will definately be in that line with them. Why? Well, its coral and everyone seems to adore it! :)

Back to the post.. I got my hands on Petticoat MSF a few weeks ago and did a few swatches



Swatch on NC42 skin

As you can see it has quite a metallic finish to it which I love. Also, depending on the amount of veining you get a light pink to rasberry colour. I decided to get this as my go to pink MSF and this has done a great job so far. I only use shimmery highlighters at night as I brave the world bare-faced during the day. I use my 187 brush with this with only one swipe through the MSF. This will probably last me a lifetime the way I use it! Refined MSF is still my favourite one though and I will save that for another post.

Do you have a favourite MSF? How do you use it?

Ulta3 nailpolishes- An Aussie Gem

Ulta3 nailpolishes are $2 gems found in Aussie drugstores/chemists. They come in so many beautiful colours and most of them go on very smooth with no chips for upto a week! I usually use Essie nailpolishes and these are definately comparable and some of them are even better. I particularly like the summery bright colours and you can't go wrong for the price. From what I gather the shade "Watermelon" has been made popular by the Oz Vogue forum and its not difficult to see why. It is a beautiful coral shade that really flatters my olive skin tone. I also love the shade "Tahiti" on my toes which is a very bright orangey coral colour.

On a side note, apparently true Australians have a pair of casual thongs (yeah, I know.. not the lingerie kind but flipflops) and a pair of "dressy" thongs. To my horror I realised that was true for me as well.. seems like 3 years here has made me a convert! :)

Now onto the pictures.... (clickable thumbnails)



Monday, April 5, 2010

Crystaliciousss' first giveaway

Crystaliciousss is having an amazing giveaway on her blog.. and it is open Internationally so head to her blog and check her out.