I'm sorry to hear that a couple of my fav bloggers have deleted their blogs since, but hope the majority of you guys are still there. Till the next post!
I'm moving next week, and then my flight for Seattle is the week after that. (Just to clear up the confusion: I'm not moving to Seattle, just visiting.) I'll be there for a whole month.
Can I ask though, for those of you who have a mac computer? What's the difference between an iBook and a MacBook? :-P
June was the longest month in my life, but suddenly half of July is gone! The exact date of my move is still unknown, but it should be within 2 weeks. And Seattle is about 3.5 weeks away. My mom said there are lots of packages waiting for me at home... :-)
Yesterday I finally took some photos before stepping out so here they are.
I applied two coats of Jane Iredale mascara (great stuff), a little Dior pencil liner, Nars Angelika blush and Dior Addict High Shine in 220 New Look Beige.
I noticed that the Jane Iredale liquid foundation gives me a more luminous look. A bit of M.A.C. Nylon eyeshadow in the corner of my eyes, bridge of nose and cupid's bow is even better.
While I'm not really into eye makeup, I do love taking the time and do some highlight on the top of my cheeks (any white pearlescent powder) and just under the jaw line (any light bronzer).
A random note: Illamasqua has announced that they will begin distributing in Sephora in the U.S. starting October of this year. Fabulous!
I've been on a diet for a couple of weeks, and am determined to change the way I eat: cutting carbs and meat down to a minimum. Not exactly a meat lover to begin with, cutting meat hasn't made a a real difference, but I'd have fish or chicken once in a while. As to carbs, well, that takes some will power!
While I wait for the ice-cream to soften up, a friend who came back from a trip in Paris brought me some goodies: a cherry blossom box from L'Occitane and a Make Up For Ever eye shadow I asked for, in shade 111.
So here we have: Annemarie Borlind hand balm, Make Up For Ever HD powder, Shu Uemura White Recovery EX emulsion, NARS Masai lipstick, M.A.C. Blanc Type eyeshadow, and R.O.C. chapstick.
Let's talk about the skincare items first.
Annemarie Borlind: best hand product I've ever tried! The light scent and emollient texture make this a pleasure to apply at the office and on the go. A must in my handbag, it keeps my hands moisturised and soft.
Shu Uemura: this was purchased in Tokyo, but it was a waste of money because I feel that my DIY masks do a better job of brightening my skin.
R.O.C. : there's just a 1cm left of it, lol. A decent chapstick with no paraffin. It's rich enough to last a few hours. But I will not re-purchase, because Jess and Anna sent me other chapsticks to try! :-)
On to the make up items.
Make Up For Ever: I've been using the HD powder for 15 months, and it looks like I'm finally running out.
Basically I apply a layer of this after my (greasy) sunscreen, then apply powder or liquid foundation. To me, this is an invisible powder that just provides a smooth canvas to work on, and is great against humidity. But will I re-purchase? I'm not sure... I am more eager to try out mineral finishing powder.
NARS: this sheer lipstick is now tragically categorised as a "vintage" item because NARS will not make any more of this.
Described as a "rose quartz" on their website, I will simply say this is a very cool-toned berry shade, great for anyone who doesn't like red but desire a bit of drama. It has the sheerness of a gloss, and the elegance of a lipstick. One swipe gives you a hint of colour, two will enhance absolutely any look.
M.A.C.: though I've hit pan on this Blanc Type eyeshadow, I'm a long way from finishing this product. This is a pinkish beige, perfect for fair skin types. I usually apply this all over my lids and go over it with Nylon (a golden beige). A great "colour" for someone who never has time to apply eye makeup.
When I come across something a bit fancier, I try to pick it up. You never know when you might need something nice. I got this silver dress at an independent boutique here. It comes with a bow that you can clip anywhere on the dress.
This night gowny dress has twisted shoulder straps and a gathered bodice, creating an illusion of curves! lol...
Why not a high-waisted skirt with a bow? I just match this with a black tank top and flats.
A pin-stripe shorts with high waist, a good change from all the low-waisted stuff.
Another orangey item, this is a skirt with a couple of box pleats near the waistline so when you walk, it opens up like a little balloon, very floaty :-)
Cotton jersey is one of my favourite materials, because it means no ironing. (Wait, have I ever used an iron in my life?!) The deep V overlaps at the bosum and the short kimono sleeves make this a bit more interesting.
Another purple item because I love this color :-) Indian cotton saves my life in summer, and the Empire waist makes it look like I actually have curves on top...
Anyway it was just a trim. I had him re-do my fringe. I think when I visit Seattle in August, I'll have my Japanese stylist over there do a more dramatic cut...
The lighting is not very good, nor is this Canon model fit for timed shooting, but you get the idea.
Don't mind the makeup either because this is taken 12 hours after application. Well, at least the NARS Angelicka blush stayed put! I used a mix of white and lilac eyeshadow to highlight the top of my cheeks.
Jamilla asked if I got my "vacay" shopping list. I sure do! I just got started a week ago:
M.A.C. blush: Mocha (matte), Breath of Plum (satin?), Vanilla or Pink Opal pigment
Jane Iredale: mascara (back-up), anything from this brand
Anything else I must get?? :-)
Anyway, after a stressful day, one of my favourite things to do is a do-it-yourself mask. Besides the yogurt-papaya-honey one, I also like to use fresh lemon (we even get lemons from the Amalfi Coast here) and whole yogurt.
Wow, Amalfi Coast lemons are so big, bigger than the yogurt cup! :-) I've been doing this kind of all-natural masks for a few months and my freckles seemed to have lightened up a bit, even in this spring/summer season.
Here's what you can do: squeeze a teaspoon full of lemon juice into a little bowl and add a heaping soupspoonful of whole yogurt and mix. You need quite a lot of yogurt just so the mixture won't drip :-) You will feel a slightly stingy sensation, hang in there for 10 mins and rinse with cool water. Done!
After this treatment, your skin probably won't need a moisturizer for a couple of hours, thanks to the yogurt which is very nourishing. The next morning, you will wake up with plump and butter-soft skin!
This one below is for Jess, particuarly. Because when I thought, "Hmm, does Austria have any skincare brands?" I drew a blank, but lo and behold, two unopened products are sitting in my vanity. It's Susanne Kaufmann, an all-natural, laboratory brand.
I have yet to try these out, but the ingredients look really promising and this seems like a very serious brand of skincare.
Yesterday I had nothing better to do (love my Saturdays!) so I picked up a couple of curious items:
Another nail polish by NOUBA. This one has randomly-sized orange and lime green glitter in a clear coat. The colour and glitters are pretty subtle so I like it. Full-on colours like green and blue really turn me off because they look so ghastly!
Has anyone tried Make Up For Ever's lipglosses? How do you like them?
I personally am not a fan of lipglosses because I don't like the feeling of having something sticky on my lips. BUT this one by Kiko Make Up Milano caught my attention.The matte black packaging imitates M.A.C., but the clear gloss has a pretty purple and pink iridescence to it. So I'm willing to give it a try.
Today I'm reviewing three all-natural products: Annemarie Borlind hand balm, Jane Iredale's concealer "Disappear" and its oil-control primer "Absence".
Annemarie Borlind hand balm
I'm concerned about my hands showing signs of aging so a good hand lotion is something important to have. This fits the bill! The tube is rather small (50ml), but a bean-sized amount is enough for both hands. The texture of the cream is very fine and the light scent is pleasant. I work the lotion in my palms to warm it up and rub it all over my hands, without forgetting the fingertips.
The beauty of the product is that you don't have to keep applying. I like applying it before I go out in the morning, once during the day in the office, and that's it. The Annemarie Borlind hand balm is now a must-have in my handbag.
Jane Iredale Absence oil-control primer
This product is a solid white paste contained in a flat jar. It comes with a sponge. Jane Iredale is perhaps the most expensive mineral makeup brand out there, but it's worth every cent. After sunscreen, I use a liquid foundation brush to pick up some product and apply on my t-zone. The white paste disappears as it is spread on the skin. There's a very light, nice scent.
This has made a huge difference in my makeup application. This really reduces the size of my pores. In fact, they seem to look smaller and smaller as the day goes on :-) My skin is not very oily so I haven't noticed a huge difference in oil control, but it's enough so that I blot only once by the end of the day.
Jane Iredale Disappear concealer with green tea extract
As my Giorgio Armani concealer expired, I picked up this all-natural concealer (actually mom sent it over).
The 0.5 oz (15g) tube has a doe-foot applicator. The concealer is not meant to be applied with your fingertips because the product is designed to literally stick to your skin. It smells a bit wheaty (lol), like the brand's liquid foundation. A little goes a long way. I squeeze out a bit of concealer onto a clean spatula, and again use a synthetic brush to pick up and apply the product.
Coverage is good, but the texture is difficult to control. Without chemicals like propylene glycol or butylene glycol, this concealer doesn't glide and takes a little effort to blend in using your fingers. But an extra minute in front of the mirror is worth it, knowing I'm not using harmful stuff on my face.
Anna sent me an Annemarie Borlind hand balm, a Yes to Carrots lip balm (an organic brand), a tube of L'Occitane olive daily face cream, and many more natural product samples. All this came with a (delicious) set of flower-scented hard candies (yum yum), Yogi tea bags (organic, of course) and a pretty postcard. Thank you Anna! Hope to meet you soon!
A little later in the week, I got my swap package from Jess. I simply got her a Make Up For Ever pencil, and here's what she showered me with.
Two Annemarie Borlind hand balm (which means now I have a lifetime supply), a lip balm from the same brand (hey I go thru a lot of lip balms, ok?) and a galore of samples of every brand from KenzoKi and Dior to Chanel and Clarins. A big thank you to Jess!
But yesterday I took out the 15-ml tube and thought I'd give it a try after having looked at the brand's website. This was my first time trying any type of BB cream, but having read so many reviews, I wasn't surprised when the product came out as a dull, beige cream that was very emollient.
Knowing how thick this stuff is, I just spot-applied where necessary (under eyes, wings of nose, around the laugh line, etc) and blended. The coverage was light-to-medium, quite natural.
With T.LeClerc powder all over, the finish was very, very nice. I skipped my usual concealer.So I might just jump on the BB cream bandwagon! Thanks Birkie!
Giorgio Armani high-precision concealer is absolutely wonderful, but it has reached its expiration date (six months after opening) and I won't buy a second tube. This BB cream's coverage is a little lighter, but it works fine for me.
I will be in Seattle August 7 - August 27. Any beauty bloggers that I can meet up for a coffee?? I'm so looking forward to this trip because I only get to see my family there once a year. I also love the cool summers in Seattle.
Thank you Jess and Nic Nic for the blogger award! How nice it is to be awarded twice!
So I have a few things to show you this time.
First off is Guerlain's limited edition "Le Rouge G" lipstick with mirrored case. The brand was so generous to send me three.
#1 Guerlinade is just my type of colour - a pinkish beige. No shimmers here which is another plus for me.
This is a long post, lol.
I'm glad to tell you that the Caudalie body lotion worked just fine and I finished one bottle. Since I'm always on the hunt for better, healthier skincare products, I got Sanoflore Almond Milk body lotion this time.
Again, very modest packaging here, but who cares when you know inside it's full of organic goodness. Sanoflore, a French brand, only cultivates organically-grown plants and uses its extracts as ingredients.
Oops, since it has no paraben, this product will expire 9 months after opening, which is fine if you use this after every shower. The 200ml bottle is about 15-18 euro.
I used this yesterday and gave this a thumbs-up. The runny texture is so nice. It absorbs much faster than Caudalie. The scent of the almond and orange essential oil is strong, but it disappears after 10 mins. My skin really loves this stuff! Hurray on finding yet another skin-friendly product.