March Favourites + Highlights 2021

I didn’t intend to take a blogging break… it just kind of happened. I didn’t really feel like writing and over the years I’ve come to be more at ease with posting when I feel like it. Also, for the past month I haven’t had much to say, occasionally I have struggled with my emotions and I’m still getting my head around everything following the breakup. I’ve been enjoying quieter weekends mostly filled with reading and listening to music, I love that I can always fall back on those hobbies. I also had a couple of deliveries and shared photos on Instagram if you’re interested to see what I picked up.

Onto this month’s favourites:

1. Nike Club Fleece Joggers – When I’m at home I love to wear comfortable clothes and with winter on the way I love being cosy and warm. In October last year I purchased a hoodie and joggers from Nike and a few times this month I have got the joggers out. The joggers are plain black and are incredibly soft and warm. They are actually men’s joggers and when I looked up the size guide the measurements for this pair were similar to a women’s pair but the women’s joggers were more expensive. I’m only 4ft 11 and the length is perfect on me. I’m not sure how men who are average height would get on but I’m not complaining!

2. Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray – This setting spray is one of the most talked about in the beauty world. I had always wanted to try it and purchased a 30ml size last month. I have heard people say they don’t get the hype around this and it’s overrated but I also wanted to find out for myself. The fact this has ended up in my favourites indicates I like it. The mist sprayed is nice and light which I like, I don’t like setting sprays that drench the skin and make the face wet. There is a slight scent but nothing offensive or overly perfumed. I like how this melts makeup together, it’s not too glowy and doesn’t make skin look greasy. If you have dry skin like me I think you would also enjoy this.

3. Rimmel Brow Pro Micro in Soft Brown – I was getting low on my trusty Rimmel eyebrow pencil and I couldn’t find one in store. I did see this product and decided to give it a go. It has a spoolie at one end and product that winds up at the other. It’s very easy to use and my brows look natural, you can apply as little or as much product as you desire. The one great thing about this is I don’t have to sharpen it. The colour is also a good match for me. Depending on how long this lasts I might have found a replacement brow product I like more than Rimmel’s regular eyebrow pencil.

4. Ana Luisa jewellery – I have been wearing jewellery a lot more regularly the past six months or so and I have had some beautiful pieces come into my collection. At the end of February I purchased two pieces from Ana Luisa after spending an age browsing their website and often hearing Arna Alayne talk about the brand on YouTube. The pieces are very reasonably priced and if you’re into ethical brands Ana Luisa is also carbon neutral. I purchased two gold pieces; an adjustable ring with a rope twist pattern and a gold horn necklace that reminded me of a dupe for the famous Missoma horn necklace. If you’re interested in taking a look at the site and want to purchase something for yourself you can use my referral link to get $15 off.

March Highlights

  • I’ve enjoyed playing with Pat McGrath’s Mthrshp Mega Celestial Divinity palette. Still a little overwhelmed when it comes to pairing shades together but the colours are so pretty.
  • I’ve made good progress on my project pan items, a handful of products have been finished up and other products have been swapped in.

March’s Spotify Playlist


Share one of your highlights for the month and what you’ve been up to in the comments!

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Products I’m Decluttering

Usually I include any discards when I do empties posts but recently there have been a handful of products I’m ready to let go of which warranted it’s own post. On the whole I’m not wasteful and I’m happy to pass on products that don’t work for me. There is only the odd product that ends up in the bin normally because it has dried out, separated or I’ve had it too long.

1. Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation – 010 Light Porcelain

I have only used this foundation a handful of times and I just don’t get on with it. It was one of the four foundations I tested at the start of 2020 and it was the worst ranked. I was a little disappointed as Rimmel is one of my favourite brands and I used to love their Match Perfection foundation. This shade wasn’t right for me, I think it was too light (which never happens) and it didn’t look right on my skin. The formula felt very thick and wasn’t easy to blend or build. The coverage wasn’t what I like and my face looked too shiny and dewy. This has had minimal use so I’ll try passing it on.

2. Max Factor Miracle Match Foundation in 40 Light Ivory

I was tossing up whether or not to keep this foundation as it’s not entirely bad. This shade matches me extremely well and the coverage is nice but this can emphasise my dry skin and it has the worst smell of any foundation I’ve tried. This was picked up during a clearance sale so perhaps it had been sitting in the store for a while before I got it. Despite this not being the worst foundation I’ve had I don’t find myself reaching for it often enough to justify keeping it. This would have been used less than 10 times so I’ll try and find a new home for it.

3. Origins Drink-Up Intensive Overnight Mask

I had heard so many wonderful reviews of this face mask and I was excited to try it. I picked up the smaller size and as it turns out that was a wise choice as this didn’t agree with my skin. I have dry-dehydrated skin so I thought this mask sounded perfect to help try and combat that. I would only use this mask every once in a while and it wasn’t until after using it a couple of times that I noticed the next day I would start to break out, especially on my forehead. Having drier skin I don’t tend to get a lot of acne and it seemed like too much of a coincidence it was happening each time I reached for this mask. I’m not sure whether one of the ingredients didn’t work with my skin or if I was leaving the mask on too long but I made the decision to stop using it. It’s such a shame because the scent of this product is really lovely. Hopefully I can pass this onto someone with less sensitive skin than mine.

4. Max Factor Excess Shimmer in Pink Opal

I have tried to make this colour work for years but I’m convinced the formula of this shadow is not right. I have another shade from this line and the formula is soft and creamy, this from the first time I used it has felt dry and crumbly – I’m not sure if it was sealed properly in the shop or if this shade is formulated differently and that’s how it’s supposed to be. The shadow isn’t so dry that it’s unusable but it doesn’t have much shine and pigmentation on the eyes compared to when I swirl my finger in the pot, the product doesn’t translate well onto the eyelids. I was using all of my single shadows throughout October and after reaching for this again thought it’s time to get rid as I have similar shades in eyeshadow palettes and rarely ever reach for this. The colour of the shadow itself is stunning but it’s not the easiest to work with. This is sadly going in the bin!

5. Stila Magnificent Metals – Kitten Karma

I dedicated this post to why I didn’t think this particular set of mini Magnificent Metals by Stila were worth the hype and I still stand by that statement. Kitten Karma was the best performing shadow in the set, it was right up my street in terms of shade, the formula wasn’t thin or watery and there was a nice amount of glitter. The two other shades in the set had previously been discarded and thrown out as they had dried up and when I went to use Kitten Karma in October the same thing happened. Shadows like this clearly need to be used up quickly as they aren’t long lasting. I wouldn’t pick up any of the full sized shades as I wouldn’t get my money’s worth. I don’t recommend these if you’re not going to reach for them often.

6. Milani Eyeshadow Primer

I have had this primer for about a year and started using it in January of this year. For the first few months it was fine but the more I used it the more I noticed it would set very quickly on my eyelids and make them feel dry. I understand the purpose of primer is to make product last longer and make product adhere to the skin better but this became so uncomfortable I’d rather apply no primer and have eyeshadow fade. I won’t throw this away as there’s still plenty of product left, I will try and pass it on.


Have you gotten rid of any products recently?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

September Favourites + Highlights 2020


September has been an interesting month. A second wave of Corona Virus hit New Zealand’s shores in August and there has been a mixture of cases at the border and in the community. I feel as a country we will fluctuate between levels for some time. Also this month I received a letter with a date for my tonsillectomy – October 6th. I’m a little nervous anticipating what the pain will be like but in the long run I’ll be better off. I’ve got plenty of ice cream at the ready and I plan to rest and take it easy for a week or two. There’s been another hiccup with my mum, her magnesium levels have dropped right down again. The magnesium she was given in hospital isn’t available from a pharmacy and trying to find an alternative isn’t straightforward. Perhaps October will be a simpler month?

Onto this month’s favourites:

1. Cotton On Body Cropped Fluro Hoodie – I purchased this hoodie last year and it is so comfy and cosy. I love the bright green colour and striped balloon sleeves, it’s certainly unlike anything else I own. The crop is not too short for my body and hits at the right place. It’s a good piece for the transitional months for layering too. I’ve included a picture of the hoodie below to give you a better idea what it looks like on.

2. Rimmel Magnif’Eyes Eye Primer – I only used this primer for the first time about a week and a half ago in my Full Face of First Impressions and boy am I impressed! I have not gone back to the Milani primer since trying this as it’s much kinder to my eyes. I don’t know if its seasonal but over the past few weeks the Milani primer has dried out my eyelids and made them sensitive. The Rimmel primer does set but not to the point where eyeshadow doesn’t apply on top and it feels like pigment is dragging across the eyelids. I like that this has a doe foot applicator, it’s easier to control how much to apply.

3. MAC Double Gleam Extra Dimension Skinfinish – Double Gleam is my highlighter focus for September and she is a beauty! I had heard so many rave reviews about this shade and it really is worth all the hype. If you have fair to light skin you will especially love this, it is the perfect lit from within glow and the type of shade that goes with everything. MAC describe Double Gleam as a beige that breaks silver and the unique cream to powder formula is lovely, it’s very soft and easy to build and looks flawless on the skin. It can be used wet or dry, I have only used it dry as I like the intensity that gives but I can imagine it would be even more glowy if applied wet.

4. GHD Gold Styler – At the beginning of the month I treated myself to a new straightener. In all honesty the straightener I had was fine and did the job but I would have to go over certain areas of my hair a few times as it is quite thick. Once my hair is straight it will stay that way until it is washed again. The reason I looked at a GHD is to cut down on the amount of time it would take to straighten my hair. I also really like that the GHDs remain at a constant temperature and you can’t accidentally hit a button on the side that bumps the temperature up. I have used the straightener once so far and it only took 10 minutes to do all of my hair, my other straightener would take about half an hour. The quality and technology is really top notch, the straightener plays a sound when you turn it on and another sound when it’s heated up (roughly 25 seconds later). Hair is left looking shiny, sleek and healthy.

Close up of the sparkly detail on the plates of the straightener.

September Highlights

  • Steps released a new single and announced they are releasing a new album in November. Within minutes of getting the email announcing the album you can bet I had a signed copy pre-ordered!
  • September has been a good month for new music in general with releases from Delta Goodrem and Kylie Minogue as well.

September’s Spotify Playlist:


How was your month? Share one of your highlights in the comments!

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Full Face of First Impressions

I have acquired some new makeup recently and there are enough products to warrant trying out a bunch together for a dedicated post. I love trying out new makeup and enjoy watching videos and reading about other people doing the same. Before purchasing products I always research and look up plenty of reviews and over the years there aren’t many products I’ve purchased that I really haven’t liked.

Products listed in order of application. Products marked with *** are new:

1. Natio Daily Defence Face Moisturiser SPF 50+*** – Natio face products work well for my skin. Their products are full of good, natural ingredients and the price you pay for the quality you get is sensational. The main ingredients in this moisturiser are Aloe Vera and Vitamin E which are wonderful for dry skin like mine. SPF 50 in a moisturiser is great too and this one doesn’t smell like sunscreen. It feels light and non-greasy on the skin. It spreads easily and soaks in quickly without leaving skin feeling like it’s parched.

2. BECCA Skin Love Brighten & Blur Primer*** – This primer was part of a set I purchased at the end of 2019 and I have been waiting to finish up a couple of other primers before trying this one. The primer is lightweight and blends easily into the skin. It’s less runny than something like First Light by BECCA and more akin to the texture of the Hangover Primer by Too Faced. I love the sound of this, it aims to smooth, brighten and nourish the skin and diffuse the look of pores to allow makeup to apply flawlessly over top.

3. Rimmel Professional Brow Pencil in 002 Hazel

4. Lancôme Teint Miracle Foundation in 005 Beige Ivoire*** – Since trying a couple of high end foundations I see a difference in how my skin looks and the overall finish of my makeup is nicer and more flawless. This particular foundation is a favourite of one of my closest online friends (Nadine) and she has dry skin as well so I knew it would be a winner. I purchased the lightest shade available 005 Beige Ivoire which leans a little yellow but in a good way that I can make work. I don’t know if bronzer on top would be too much right now but in summer when I’m a little less fair it should be fine. The formula is extremely lightweight to allow for breathable coverage and a natural glow. The texture is quite runny as it is a water based foundation but that also helps product spread easily over the face. I usually wear one layer of foundation but to test how this builds I used two light layers around my nose and chin where I get redness. The foundation built nicely and didn’t cake or settle into lines.

5. MAC StudioFinish Concealer in NW10

6. Fenty Beauty Mini Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Setting Powder in Butter*** – I got the mini size of this powder as a back up for when I have finished my Rimmel Match Perfection loose powder. Fenty Beauty’s powder is ideal for all skin types and the powder does feel silky smooth once applied. I have been enjoying using powder to set my concealer recently as it does make a difference to the overall look of my makeup. I purchased the shade Butter as it is one of the shades recommended for fair skin tones and aims to give a soft, brightening effect. I have heard a few people say this powder is messy but I’ll have to use it a few more times to see whether or not that’s true. The combination of this powder with the other base products left my skin feeling like velvet.

7. BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector in Champagne Pop*** – This is the third of these little mini highlighters I’ve purchased and they are some of my favourites! Champagne Pop is described as a soft white gold with pinky peach undertones. In comparison to the other minis I own by Becca Champagne Pop is warmer and more golden than Opal and Moonstone. This shade isn’t too golden for my liking and it’s absolutely beautiful on the skin, Becca highlighters have a lovely, soft formula that blends into the skin effortlessly.

8. Rimmel Magnif’Eyes Eye Primer*** – I have been using Milani’s Eyeshadow Primer but I notice sometimes it makes my eyelids dry and different eyeshadow formulas can be hard to apply and blend over top of the Milani primer. I’m a big fan of Rimmel and this primer was half the price of the Milani one. It reminds me a lot of Urban Decay’s Primer Potion which I love, looking forward to using this more!

9. Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette*** – I love neutral palettes and I know this has been discontinued but it’s an absolute classic! I picked this up brand new a couple of months ago and it has been sitting in my drawer since. I used the shade Bootycall as a base shadow, Tease to deepen the crease and Suspect all over the lid. I used the fluffy side of the double ended brush that comes with the palette to apply Bootycall and Tease and my ring finger to apply Suspect. The shadows were incredibly easy to work with and blended like a dream. I can tell I’m going to get a lot of use from this palette.

10. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara This mascara isn’t brand new to me but I haven’t spoken about it on the blog before. Does this mascara live up to its name, no, is this mascara the most lengthening and volumising I’ve used, also no. It is however a decent mascara and as the formula dries out I enjoy it more. The formula was very wet when I first started using it and it didn’t layer well and would smudge. I probably wouldn’t repurchase the full size of this mascara but I’m glad I’ve tried it.

11. BECCA Glow Gloss in Foxglove*** – I purchased three Glow Glosses from Becca and Foxglove is my favourite shade out of the three. It is a muted plum with cool silver pearl and gives me MAC Syrup vibes. The formula has little flecks of glitter but this doesn’t feel gritty on the lips and it’s very subtle. The gloss does have a minty scent and a bit of tingling upon application but nothing uncomfortable and it stops after a few minutes. The formula isn’t sticky, it’s very comfortable to wear and the gloss is nicely pigmented.

The Finished Look

Overall I’m impressed with how this look turned out and I’m a fan of all the new products I tried. Standouts after the first use that I’m looking forward to trying more are the moisturiser, foundation, eye primer and eyeshadow palette.


What do you think of this look? Have you tried any of these products or purchased any new makeup recently?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

GRWM: Drugstore Makeup Look

In June I shared this look using as many luxurious makeup products as I could. It was a lot of fun to create so I also wanted to do a look using a full face of affordable, drugstore makeup. Most of the makeup I own is more in the drugstore price range, I love products that are good quality and inexpensive and sometimes drugstore products can’t be beat!

Products listed in order of application:

1. Olay Complete UV Lotion Sensitive – I used to be all about a face moisturiser from Simple until 2018 when I tried this one from Olay and haven’t looked back. This is really nice, it’s lightweight, makeup looks good on top of it and it contains SPF 15.

2. Maybelline Master Prime Hydrate + Smooth – The more I have used this primer the more I have come to enjoy it. It is a little thicker than other primers in my collection but for work and everyday wear this is good. It soaks in quickly so you don’t have to wait before going in with your foundation if you’re short on time.

3. Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil in 002 Hazel – Still all I use to fill in my brows.

4. Max Factor Miracle Match Foundation in 40 Light Ivory – I got this foundation as a birthday gift in 2019 and it sat in my drawer for about a year before I tried it out. I put this to the test with three other foundations at the start of the year (post *HERE*) and whilst it was one of the lower ranked foundations I don’t want to give up on it yet. The undertone of this shade is neutral which works well with my skintone and as it wears throughout the day my natural oils come out and I don’t mind how it looks.

5. L’Oreal Infallible More Than Concealer in 323 Fawn – I purchased this concealer in April after seeing it on Arna Alayne’s YouTube channel. I was a little worried this would be drying on my dry skin but it’s not at all, this still feels nice and creamy! This concealer is full coverage but blends into the skin easily and a little goes a long way. I do find if I use too much this can make my skin look a little pale. This does have a bit of a weird smell but once product is applied the scent disappears.

6. Rimmel Match Perfection Loose Powder  – I am loving this powder lately. I have had it for a few years now but it still applies and looks the same on the skin. It’s translucent so it doesn’t alter how my base products look and it works particuarly well to set the L’Oreal concealer above in place.

7. Milani Eyeshadow Primer – I don’t enjoy this primer as much as Urban Decay’s Primer Potion but it gets the job done and keeps eyeshadow in place. It can make my eyelids a little dry.

8. Colourpop Lilac You a Lot Palette – Purple is one colour that really works for my skin tone and it was fun bringing out this palette for this drugstore look. I started by applying Zoned Out as a base shadow all over the lid then used Iffy to deepen up the crease. Finally I applied Fluff all over the lid with my finger for a pop of shimmer.

9. Colourpop BFF Mascara in Purple Prose – I have a back up of my holy grail Rimmel mascara that I didn’t want to crack open just for this post. The other mascaras in my collection at the moment are all high end and then I remembered this purple mascara I got from Colourpop last year. I love pairing it with purple eyeshadow and it’s fun to wear. Coloured mascara doesn’t take the place of regular black mascara for me but this does add length and volume to my lashes without looking clumpy and the formula is nice and doesn’t smudge. The more coats I apply, the more purple my lashes look.

10. I ♡ Makeup Goddess of Love Highlighter – This was my first highlighter and I still love wearing it. The pink, purple and silver tones look so nice on fair skin and this can be built up depending on the intensity you like. This highlighter looks natural on the skin and pairs so well with purple toned eyeshadow.

11. Dainty Doll Cream Blush in Billion Dollar Babies – I knew this blush would be perfect to add a natural flush to the cheeks. The cream formula is lush!

12. The Body Shop Rose Face Mist – This mist makes the skin lovely and dewy. It’s particularly nice on top of more matte foundations and if I’ve used setting powder. The rose scent is also pleasant, it’s not overpowering or too strong.

13. Revlon Lip Butter in Lollipop – Not only is this my favourite kind of lipstick colour to wear but it also looks good with anything! I love these lip butters as they are nicely pigmented as well as making the lips look juicy and glossy. The formula is sheerer than a regular lipstick but this shade in particular still packs a punch!

The Finished Look


What do you think of this look? What are some of your favourite drugstore products?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Empty Products #14

My first empties round up post lockdown! Has anyone else noticed they have been using less   due to not wearing making and not using as many beauty products? On the whole this bunch of products wasn’t the best for being ones I love and would gladly repurchase but there are a couple I really enjoyed.

Haircare

1. Schwarzkopf Leave In Treatment

I would apply this product after a shower when my hair was 80% dry and let it soak in. The smell was pleasant, my hair did look sleeker as opposed to if I didn’t use this but it’s not a product I’ve missed since finishing it up.

Repurchase: Probably not.

2. Schwarzkopf Ultimate Repair Shampoo

The scent of this is very manly but not in a good way. I didn’t find this worked well on my hair and I didn’t enjoy using it.

Repurchase: No.

3. Schwarzkopf Ultimate Repair Conditioner

Usually I can remember if I preferred a shampoo or conditioner more but I can’t with this range, I just know I wasn’t a fan of either of these.

Repurchase: No.

Makeup/Beauty

4. IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream in Fair

This CC Cream is totally worth the hype! I purchased a 12ml deluxe sample from Sephora in December and love how this looks on my skin each time I wear it. The quality day after day is consistent and it makes such a lovely everyday base. One light layer of product was enough for the finish I like and this does not cling to dry patches, it skims over the skin and gives a natural, healthy look. Product can be layered but I found I didn’t need more than one layer. I did notice Fair was a slightly better match for me in summer as opposed to autumn but I can still make the shade work.

Repurchase: Maybe. I see IT Cosmetics have come out with a new Fair Ivory shade but not in the 12ml size yet. I’d want to try the smaller size first in the new shade.

5. YSL Volume Effet Cils The Curler Mascara

I got this mascara as part of a set of YSL minis last year and started using it in February this year. The mascara has a plastic wand which I’m not usually a fan of but this formula was so good I didn’t mind the brush not having real bristles. This mascara gives length and volume and it’s super black which I love, it adds to the drama and really makes your eyeshadow pop. The formula was consistent throughout the time I used this and it was a nice medium between wet and dry. The formula wasn’t sticky and layered well without clumping.

Repurchase: No, sadly. Not because the product is bad but no full sized mascara is worth $70 – that’s ridiculous!

6. Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil in 002 Hazel

This brow pencil is all I have used to fill in my brows for the past four years. This shade matches in with my auburn hair perfectly.

Repurchase: Already have.

7. Delon Regular Nail Polish Remover

This did the job and wasn’t harsh on my nails when it came to removing nail polish but I didn’t like it as much as the Cutex Strengthening nail polish remover I tried years ago and loved. The Cutex product is difficult to track down though.

Repurchase: If it was the only type available then yes but there are other nail polish removers I prefer.

Skincare & Fragrance

8. The Body Shop Mandarin Energizing Face Mist

I purchased this thinking it would be similar to The Body Shop’s Vitamin C mist as they both target tired, dull skin and aim to give it a boost. I did not enjoy the scent of this and it felt a little sticky on the face. It didn’t soak in and leave my skin hydrated, it just kind of sat on top of other products.

Repurchase: No, my least favourite face mist out of all The Body Shop ones I’ve tried.

Body

9. The Body Shop Warm Vanilla Body Butter

When I purchased this body butter I was overwhelmed at how sweet the scent was but once I started using it the sweetness was manageable. The scent is easier to digest in smaller doses and the sweetness wasn’t too much once product had soaked into the skin. As with other body butters this feels lovely and silky to apply and keeps skin nourished and soft.

Repurchase: Possibly. This was part of a Christmas range but The Body Shop tend to release a vanilla scent nearly every Christmas.

10. Nivea Invisible Anti-Perspirant – Clear

Holy grail! This features in every empties for a reason.

Repurchase: Yes.

11. Dove Invisible Dry Anti-White Marks Deodorant

I strayed from my trusty Nivea anti-perspirant and this was nowhere near as good! The product was more like a cream than a liquid when applying it and it felt a little sticky. Product didn’t feel as moisturising on the underarms and I felt more sweaty. I used this during autumn/winter mainly working from home so I wasn’t getting particularly hot either.

Repurchase: No.

Discards

1. Stila Magnificent Metals Glitter & Glow – Perlina

I had heard so many good things about the Stila Magnificent Metals and when I purchased a set of three minis to try I was left scratching my head as to what all the fuss is about. One shade I threw out as product was non existent but I did want to make an effort to use up the other two shades in the set; Perlina and Kitten Karma. I went to apply Perlina on top of another eyeshadow recently and discovered it had dried up which I was disappointed about. I will not be picking up any of these in future as overall I haven’t had a good experience. I don’t know whether it’s because these are minis and the full sized shades perform better but I’ve been put off.


What was the last product you finished up?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

GRWM: Luxurious Makeup Look

I am lucky enough to have some really beautiful makeup products that aren’t exactly on the lower end of the price spectrum. Before I purchase a product I always look up reviews and do my research, especially if I’m considering parting with a substantial amount of money. I definitely feel comfortable splurging in some areas and saving money in others. I know what works for my skin and how I want my makeup to turn out.

I wanted to be a little boujee and create a look using as many luxury products as possible. I didn’t doubt for a minute the look would come together well and I’m so pleased with it!

Products listed in order of application:

Products marked with an * means I didn’t have a luxury alternative

1. Olay Complete UV Lotion Sensitive*

2. Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer – I sampled this primer last year and fell in love with it straight away. I purchased a full size during lockdown. It makes my skin feel silky smooth and foundation applies beautifully over the top. A little goes a long way as this spreads really easily over the skin. It feels moisturising but it’s not at all greasy.

3. Rimmel Professional Brow Pencil in 002 Hazel*

4. YSL Touche Éclat Le Teint Radiance Awakening Foundation in B10 Porcelain – This is as close to a holy grail foundation that I have discovered so far. The shade is such a perfect match for my skin – it’s the right amount of warm and cool and like the primer, a little goes a long way. One layer is enough and the consistency of the foundation is light but blendable. Product is very easy to move around the face. This foundation makes your skin look like skin but enhances it and gives a dewy, healthy glow. I’m so impressed every time I wear it!

5. MAC Studio Finish Concealer in NW10 – This concealer blends nicely on top of the YSL foundation. It can be layered up and covers redness and spots well. This can sink into lines if my skin is feeling dry but using a good primer and foundation combats that. Studio Finish also feels lightweight and doesn’t clog my skin or make me oily.

6. Rimmel Match Perfection Translucent Setting Powder*

7. Milani Eyeshadow Primer*

8. xoBeauty Heaps of Sweets Palette – This palette cost around $55 (NZD) which compared to lots of other palettes on the market isn’t expensive. Ever since trying xoBeauty a couple of years ago I have been impressed with the price points of products in relation to quality. I tend to use drugstore eyeshadow palettes as I don’t have any high end ones but this is a good in-between. I went for a cool toned eye look, I used the shade Vanilla (light neutral that leans purple) as a base shadow all over the lid, Brownie (chocolate brown) to deepen up the crease and Cupcake (shimmery taupe) for a wash of shimmer.

9. YSL Volume Effet Faux Cils The Curler Mascara – I have been using this little mini since the end of February and it has lasted well! This has a rubber wand which I’m not usually a fan of but this mascara is really pleasant to use. The formula has stayed the same since it’s been open and it gives a bit of length and volume which I love. (Technically this mini wasn’t expensive as I got it as part of a set but if I purchased a full size it would be the priciest mascara in my collection).

10. MAC Double Gleam Extra Dimension Skinfinish – This highlighter literally melts into the skin. A little goes a long way and it gives the skin such a beautiful gleam. The cream-powder formula is flattering and doesn’t accentuate pores. This shade is versatile and one I see myself reaching for a lot as it will go with everything!

11. MAC Warm Soul – I was opting for a rosy-nude lip and knew this blush would be perfect on the cheeks to accompany it. Warm Soul is one of MAC’s Mineralize blushes so it has a baked formula and a gorgeous speckled marble effect that translates onto the skin. Like the highlighter, this blush is such a versatile shade and the combination of this and Double Gleam is a winner.

12. MAC Fix+ Magic Radiance – After setting my base with powder I knew a few sprays of this would re-hydrate the skin and make it look lovely and glowy again. Magic Radiance is even more hydrating than the regular Fix+ and it is packed with Vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and essential oils which are all great for the skin. This smells amazing too!

13. Estée Lauder Pure Colour Envy – Intense Nude – A work colleague gave me this lipstick as it wasn’t the right shade for her and it was the inspiration behind creating this luxury look. Estée Lauder is a brand I haven’t tried before. The bullet is navy and gold with a magnetic closure – it feels satisfying when the lid snaps back into place. Intense Nude is number 130 in the Pure Envy range and it is described as a moderately warm-toned light plum. This shade isn’t a true nude as it has hints of pink, brown and red but it is one of those shades that is a great everyday colour. The scent is lovely and the lipstick glides over the lips like butter. It’s incredibly comfortable to wear.

The Finished Look:

Close up of my eye makeup using xoBeauty’s Heaps of Sweets palette. Also wearing “The Romantic” lashes by xoBeauty.


Do you own any luxury makeup products?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Empty Products #13

My second empties post of the year! I currently seem to be getting one of these posts up every other month which is satisfying and makes sticking to a low buy easier. When it comes to a low buy I don’t restrict myself with a dollar amount and I still allow myself the occasional impulse purchase. I find I’m working through products more smartly and I’m able to identify what I enjoy and what (if anything) is missing from my collection.

Makeup/Beauty

1. Urban Decay Primer Potion

Up until 18 months ago I hadn’t tried an eyeshadow primer but now I’m sold on the difference they make to the longevity of my eye makeup. This primer from Urban Decay is one that is well loved and one I’d heard a lot about and it is really good. I picked up the 5.7g size and it lasts a long time, a little goes a long way. If you’re curious about eyeshadow primer or are on the fence over this one, I highly urge you to give it a try!

Repurchase: Yes.

2. Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Primer

Over the past couple of years Fenty Beauty have been making a real name for themselves and to date this is the only product I have tried from the brand. I picked up the 15ml version to see if I like the primer and at first I was on the fence about it, it felt nice and soft on the skin but it was just an ordinary primer. This primer is more on the matte side and I really started enjoying it when I paired it with foundations that verge on being too dewy to create more of a satin finish and keep excess glow at bay.

Repurchase: Maybe – I would at least consider picking up the 15ml size again.

3. MAC Pinklite Strobe Cream 30ml

One thing MAC’s Strobe Cream has going for it is it’s versatility. You can use this as a moisturising primer, mix a little bit in with foundation for a subtle glow or apply it on top of foundation for more of a blinding effect. I used this like a primer on top of my moisturiser as I didn’t find the cream moisturising enough on it’s own for my dry skin. I would be interested to swatch the peach and silver shades to see what they look like on my skintone. It’s a shame not all shades come in the small 30ml size.

Repurchase: Maybe.

4. Rimmel Scandaleyes Lycra Flex Mascara – 003 Extreme Black

This mascara is my holy grail! It gives length and volume and the formula is super easy to work with. In my experience this is one of the only mascaras I’ve tried where the formula stays the same from when the tube is first opened. The mascara doesn’t flake or smudge and is a breeze to remove at the end of the day. I was extremely happy when I found out the extreme black shade wasn’t being discontinued, the product was just being re-packaged. I am yet to try a re-packaged tube however.

Repurchase: Already have a backup.

5. Maybelline Dr Rescue Top Coat

The bottle is not technically empty but I can’t get any more product out and it’s time to call done on this one. The top coat itself is excellent but the brush is really thin and doesn’t pick up a lot of product at once. The amount of product that gets left behind in combination with the small brush is a little disappointing.

Repurchase: Not sure. Value for money wise this is good but I think I prefer my Revlon top coat.

Skincare & Fragrance

6. The Body Shop Shea EDT

I love the Shea range from The Body Shop but this EDT was my least favourite out of all the scents I’ve tried. I thought this scent would work as a fragrance but I didn’t like it on me.

Repurchase: No.

7. Palmer’s Moisture Rich Night Cream

This is a good, inexpensive option for nighttime but I definitely need to apply my facial oil when I use it. My current night moisturiser is more hydrating and lately I have been able to get away with applying that on it’s own without the facial oil. This was the second time I’d purchased this cream so I do like it but I think there are better options.

Repurchase: Maybe.

8. Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm

I purchased this tub in April 2019 and 98% of the time I have worn makeup over the past year I have removed it with this. It is a little pricey but for me the price tag is worth it; my skin doesn’t get irritated, my skin has improved since using the balm regularly and the product isn’t scented or full of harsh ingredients.

Repurchase: Yes.

Body

9. Nivea Invisible Anti-Perspirant – Clear

I haven’t gotten around to trying a different anti-perspirant yet but I will! As you know these feature in every empties and it’s a great everyday staple.

Repurchase: Yes.

10. The Body Shop Moringa Body Yogurt

I first mentioned the Moringa body yogurt in my November 2019 favourites. If you find body lotions and body butters too heavy and want more of a lightweight, gel texture you will enjoy these. Product absorbs quickly, it’s great for all skin types and you get the same amount as you would in a tub of body butter for a cheaper price. A great all over body moisturiser!

Repurchase: Yes. I’d be interested to try other scents too.

Discards

1. Soap & Glory Hand Food – Hydrating Hand Cream

I purchased this hand cream at the end of 2018 and it sat sealed in my beauty drawer for around a year before I got to using it. I noticed at the start of the year only a couple of weeks after opening the hand cream the texture changed to an oily, greasy mess. I shook the tube to try and mix the product back up but that didn’t do anything. The product must have gone bad which is a shame because I’d heard good things about this hand cream and it’s scent. The cream itself did feel nice on the skin and for the price it’s very reasonable. I’m not inclined to repurchase but I’d happily try this again if I received it as a gift.


What was the last product you finished up?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

GRWM: New Makeup + First Impressions

I haven’t done a get ready with me or shared a makeup look in a while and there’s a couple of newer products in my collection that I want to talk about. I thought it would be fun to create a look with them and share my first impressions. With the majority of the other products I have tried to use ones that I don’t reach for on a regular basis.

Products marked with *** are newer to my collection.

BASE

Olay Complete UV Lotion Sensitive – A good everyday moisturiser that is inexpensive, contains SPF and does the job.

BECCA First Light Priming Filter *** – I have only used this a handful of times so far but it feels lovely and lightweight on the skin and blends in very easily. Makeup sits nicely on top and this is a product I see myself really enjoying.

IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream in Fair – I am really enjoying this CC Cream. A good shade match, easy to blend, longwearing, comfortable on the skin and covers my redness well. I urge you to try this if you’ve been on the fence. I picked up my tube from Sephora which is smaller and cheaper than the full size but a good way to sample the product.

MAC Studio Finish Concealer in NW10 – This concealer pairs well with the IT Cosmetics CC Cream and isn’t drying when used in conjunction with hydrating foundations.

Rimmel Match Perfection Translucent Powder – With the warm weather lately this powder has helped to stop excess shine. I tend to only reach for powder in summer or if my base makeup looks too glowy.

eyes

Rimmel Professional Brow Pencil in 002 Hazel – This pencil is still all I use to fill in my brows. The red tones go with the red in my hair and my brows never look overdone.

Milani Eyeshadow Primer *** – I didn’t realise this eyeshadow primer didn’t have a brush on applicator and is a squeezy tube. Product seems easy to blend on to the eyelids and the eyeshadows I wore on top applied well. I need to continue using this for a while before I can decide whether or not I’m a fan but I’m not disappointed after the first use.

Zoella x Colourpop Brunch Date Palette – Brunch Date is such a beautiful palette and it is the palette I have selected for my one palette, one month challenge for March. This palette gives me autumn vibes and is packed full of neutrals with pops of colour and shimmers. I used Maple Syrup all over the lid, Extra Slice to deepen the crease and applied Pancakes Please across the centre with my finger.

YSL Volume Effet Faux Cils The Curler Mascara *** – I purchased a four piece set of YSL minis in order to sample Black Opium towards the end of 2019 and this mascara was also in the set. I prefer to only have one mascara open at a time so I waited until my previous mascara was finished before trying this. I was curious to see how I’d find the mini size as I’ve only used full sized tubes before but application wasn’t any harder as the wand is full size. I was surprised by the shape of the wand and a little shocked as to how it manages to fit in the tube (image of the wand below). The wand is long and curved and has two sides of bristles designed to give lashes a full, lifted look. Upon first application the mascara definitely gave me length and product applied easily, the formula isn’t too wet or too dry and I’m looking forward to using this more.

Cheeks & Lips

BECCA Moonstone Shimmering Skin Perfector *** – This highlighter came in the same set as the First Light Priming Filter. Moonstone is a light gold and sits somewhere between theBalm’s Mary-Lou Manzier and BECCA’s Opal, of which I own both. This shade is very natural on the skin but can be built up if desired. The glow BECCA highlighters give is super pretty. The mini size lasts ages too!

Max Factor Creme Puff Blush in 10 Nude Mauve *** – I believe blush is one of those products you don’t need to own a lot of if you have a few good staple shades. Baby pinks don’t work for my skin so I tend to be drawn to more dusty, mauve pinks or peachy pinks. Nude Mauve is a stunning brown-pink mauve that is subtle but still gives my cheeks some oomph. This blush can really be layered up to sculpt and highlight the cheeks.

xoBeauty Liquid Lipstick – Aroha – Aroha is a beautiful muted deep plum but a shade I haven’t worn much since purchasing it. I thought this colour would be perfect for this look as I went for simple colours on the eyes and cheeks and I’m sure you all know how much I love a bold lip!


What do you think of this look? Have you tried any new makeup recently?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Products I Want To Use Up

I prefer to use up what I have before purchasing replacements and new products. There’s something satisfying about minimalism and being without clutter which also prevents me from feeling overwhelmed and questioning what to use. It’s more effective when I can use a product and move on to the next one rather than having a ton I’m working my way through at the same time. Makeup is a slight exception as I don’t wear the same lipstick and eyeshadow everyday. I’m sure these products will make an appearance in an empties post in the near future.

1. The Body Shop Shea EDT

I do enjoy these 30ml bottles of EDT from The Body Shop for their size and their portability. If I need to carry fragrance in my handbag these fit perfectly. The Shea range from The Body Shop is my favourite but I don’t think Shea works as a perfume. I don’t dislike this product but it’s my least favourite of the eau de toilettes I have tried. The scent has grown on me the more I’ve used it and it shouldn’t take me long to finish up.

Estimated amount of product left: 1/5

2. Rimmel Match Perfection Translucent Loose Powder

This powder is lovely but I never see anyone talking about it. Rimmel is an underrated brand in my opinion, the quality you get for the price point is very reasonable. I have had this powder for a few years now and I want to use it up while it’s still good. If you have dry skin like I do this is a good option as it’s not matte and can be applied with a very light hand. I don’t find the product messy despite having to tip it into the lid and as it’s translucent it doesn’t alter how foundation looks underneath.

Estimated amount of product left: 1/3

3. IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream in Fair

I know you’re probably thinking this is only a relatively new addition to my makeup collection and you’d be right. Realistically being a deluxe sample containing 12ml of product compared to a normal foundation containing 30ml I don’t think this will take me long to use if I’m consistent and don’t switch between foundations. I’m also interested to see how this works for me over a period of time so I can decide whether I’d purchase the full size once. I’m also excited about my makeup looking consistently good as when I tested this along with three other foundations I was very impressed!

Estimated amount of product left: Almost full

4. MAC Studio Finish Concealer in NW10

This concealer is a little over two years old and I have made such a big dent in it. Every day the amount of pan gets bigger but the product seems to keep going. This works well in conjunction with the IT Cosmetics CC Cream so that will be a good match. This concealer is good but I still prefer Collection’s Lasting Perfection. Creamy concealers work better with my skin type.

Estimated amount of product left: 1/4

5. Stila Glitter & Glow minis in Perlina and Kitten Karma

I purchased a set of three Stila Glitter & Glow minis as a Christmas present to myself in 2018 and in all honesty I was disappointed. I wrote this post in March 2019 about how I don’t think these are worth the hype and I’ve barely reached for these since. I threw Golden Girl in the bin as the colour/glitter is practically non-existent. I would like to finish Perlina and Kitten Karma as they are easier to work with and I’m hoping to incorporate them into an eyeshadow challenge I am setting for myself even as an inner corner highlight or topper or something simple like that.

Estimated amount of product left: Perlina = 2/3, Kitten Karma = 3/4

6. Urban Decay Primer Potion

This is cheating a little as it is so close to being finished and I am ready for it! This eye primer has been a game changer for me, I love it and it definitely makes my eye makeup last better but I’ve had a Milani eye primer I’ve been waiting to try for a few months in my drawer that I’m itching to crack into. I’d say there’s another week or two left with the Urban Decay primer at most.

Estimated amount of product left: Nearly empty

7. The Body Shop Mandarin Face Mist

This is my least favourite product of the bunch. The scent is a little sickly and the mist isn’t as good as the Strawberry one I’ve tried previously. I don’t feel this mist does anything for my skin and I find I have to do quite a few sprays to feel the product on my face. Compared to the strawberry mist this doesn’t smooth or set my makeup so I’ll probably use this under/on top of my moisturiser in the morning to give my skin a boost of moisture.

Estimated amount of product left: 1/2


What products are you trying to finish up at the moment?

signature_59rnt66ifetkuap2w9

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest