Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Review: Illamasqua Intense Lipgloss in Femme + Mistress

Illamasqua is fast becoming my favourite cosmetic brand! Within a matter of days, my Illamasqua collection had expanded as I explored the range of beautiful and good quality blushers, eye shadows, nail varnishes and lipglosses. 

Illamasqua houses two types of glosses, that is the Intense and Sheer lipglosses. Both lipglosses are packaged in the same skinny and long hard plastic tube with a transparent slanted tip applicator. The lipgloss tubes are so sleek and cute! 

I am yet to try the Sheer lipglosses as I'm always on the lookout for opaque and full colour lipglosses, which the Intense lipglosses provide. 

I currently have my paws on the Intense lipglosses in Femme and Mistress, THE two most gorgeous shades I have come across thus far! Femme is a gorgeous bright coral pink and Mistress is a beautiful bright coral orange.

Illamasqua Intense lipgloss has a very delectable sweet scent and it's just so divine! The glosses are bright and goes on opaque with a glossy and shiny finish (with no traces of shimmer). Hence, there is no need to apply lipstick prior to using Illamasqua's Intense lipgloss. 

Have you tried Illamasqua's Intense/Sheer lipglosses?
Which shade gives you the best statement lips?


Sunday, 25 September 2011

Topshop, Topman and Topshop MAKEUP (haul + swatches)

Topshop Makeup Collection. Source: Topshop
Topshop is a British fashion retailer which houses in season fashion and accessories for both women and men (Topman). 

With stores open in over 20 countries, Topshop will officially open boutiques on:
Chapel St in Melbourne and 
the iconic Gowings Building (corner George St and Market St) in Sydney
in December 2011!

Together with the exciting news of Topshop's arrival to Australia, the brand new addition to London's Topshop fashion collection is  
Topshop MAKEUP

 Topshop MAKEUP was established in London last year and I only hope they will also join along very soon with Topshop boutiques in Australia. I think Topshop MAKEUP is a fabulous addition to this popular brand!

Topshop MAKEUP looks at vibrant and highly pigmented makeup with a collection of face, lip, eye and cheek products with simple, fun and quirky packaging. The price range is affordable, so you won't need to break your piggy bank!

Topshop Makeup- 'Beauty essentials that you'll wear everyday. Get set to indulge in your inner beauty queen. Each piece in the range has been created in amazing formulations and produced to the highest specifications. Choose your perfect skin tint, skin glow, blush and bronzer and build you look with glosses, liners, mascara and shadow You'll never leave home without them again!'

I managed to get my hands on some fabulous Topshop MAKEUP products from the Topshop website and here they are...

The Core Collection 
This collection includes a variety of face, eye, lip and cheek products.

Blushes in Head Over Heels (left) and Pinch (right)
Blush swatches in Pinch (left) and Head Over Heels (right)
I love these creme based blushes as they give a natural flush of coral or pink to the cheeks and they also double up as a lip colour. The formula is extremely lightweight and very creamy! The compact has an inbuilt mirror and the size is slightly smaller than MAC blush compacts. The polka dot pattern at the top of the compact is very cute!

Lip Stick in Thrilled
Looking at the pencil-like feature of this 'lip stick' I thought this looked similar to those funky Clinique Chubby Sticks that I reviewed here. The shade Thrilled is a gorgeous bright pink coral shade which brightens up my lips and leaves a soft 'glow' finsh. The texture of this lip stick looks and feels like a cross between a lip balm and lipstick.  

Eyeshadow Crayon Pencils in Lazy Days (top) and Midnight (bottom)

Lazy days is a gorgeous soft pastel pink shade with gold glitter chunks and Midnight is a beautiful intense navy shade with silver glitter chunks. These eye crayons glide on smoothly despite those gorgeous chunky glitters in them.

Lip Polish in Rhubarb

Love the cute little in-built mirror!
This cute little round pot of lip gloss looks so cute with the signature Topshop Makeup polka dot pattern on the side. To my surprise this little Polish has an inbuilt mirror which I find very convenient! The gloss is a gorgeous sparkly red shade which enhances my lip colour and looks great over lipstick. The shade you see in the pot is exactly the same intensity when applied to the lips.

The Heavy Duty Collection 
The name speaks for itself really! The Autumn/Winter 2010 Heavy Duty collection includes a variety of chrome/metallic nail polish, crimson lacquer for stained lips and bold, classy and smudged eyeshadows.

Duo Eyeshadow in Greyscale (Silver and Gold)

Duo Eyeshadow in Thunder (Peacock and Gunmetal)
Eyeshadow in Thunder, applied wet (left) and dry (right)

Eyeshadow in Greyscale, applied wet (left) and dry (right)
These duo eyeshadow comapcts are encased in a sturdy metal compact with a huge mirror inside! You can get high impact colour when applied using a wet brush. I like the idea of the little bridge over the applicator, so it won't scratch the mirror if you happen to throw it in your handbag. The shades from both sets are complimentary and are absolutely great to wear on a night out!

Sandstorm Limited Edition Makeup Collection 
This Spring/Summer 2011 Sandstorm Collection includes a variety of bronze/gold packaged eye crayons, eye shadows, semi permanent liners and soft subtle pink/bronze blush duo. Check out the range here.

Zephyr (top) and Equinox (bottom)
These eyeshadow crayons in Zephyr (gunmetal) and Equinox (rose gold) from the Sandstorm collection are stunning shades! These apply on  smoothly and gives my eyes such high impact colour. I'm amazed about the quality and the gorgeous shimmer it leaves behind. 

To conclude this post, here are a few swatches of some of the products mentioned.

L-R: Eyeshadow in Zephyr (gunmetal) and Equinox (rose gold), eyeshadow crayon pencil in Midnight (navy blue with silver glitter) and Lazy Days (soft pink with gold glitter), Lip Stick in Thrilled (bright pink coral).
 For more details on Topshop and Topshop MAKEUP click here.

Have you tried Topshop MAKEUP before? What do you think of their range?
Are you excited about the opening of Topshop in Australia?


Saturday, 24 September 2011

Review: b collection- Crackle Top Coat in White

b collection by Bloom is a bold and stylish collection of 12 products (face, cheeks, lips, eyes, nails), available exclusively at Target stores in Australia.

Bloom Cosmetics Creater, Natalie- “b collection by Bloom is an expression of my love of bold colour. Whilst this range is modestly priced, that doesn’t mean we’ve compromised on quality – I could never put my name on a product that I wasn’t proud to use myself”

 b collection welcomes a brand new addition to their collection of nail polish.
Introducing... the Crackle Top Coat- ''The essential tool for express nail art''! Crackle Top Coat adds the unique finish to your nails this season!

Crackle Top Coat in Black
Crackle Top Coat in White

Crackle Top Coat is very simple to use! Just apply one coat over your favourite nail colour and watch as the top coat shatters, allowing the base coat to peek through. Application using different brush strokes will create different crackle effects. Accomplish funky looks by applying Crackle Top Coat horizontally or vertically across the nail cuticle.

Crackle Top Coat comes in black or white. I was given the chance to trial the white Crackle Top Coat and I've been having a lot of fun watching my nails 'crackle'. The base colour I'm wearing is OPI Yodel Me On My Cell from the Irre-Swiss-Ables collection that I reviewed here.

The white Crackle Top Coat formula was a little thicker than the regular nail polish and you can see that streaking effect which matches the 'crackle' effect. 

b collection Crackle Top Coat (A$12.95) will be available from 3rd October 2011, exclusive to Australian Target stores.

What do you think of the increasing trend in these 'crackle' top coat nail polishes?
What's the best combination of shades you have created?


Product was provided for consideration only. This review is 100% based on my own thoughts and opinions. I  did not receive remuneration to post this product review.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Dessert: Belgian Dark Chocolate Soufflés

Today I discovered that Woolworths (or Safeway in Victoria) stock some delectable and indulgent desserts amongst their chocolate mud cakes and pecan danishes etc... What I picked up and took home with me this afternoon was a set of two Belgian Dark Chocolate Soufflés!! Yum!! 

The fruit and veg section in Woolies had a few punnets of juicy strawberries at $1.50 a box, so I couldn't go home without a box or two!

So, here are the soufflés I purchased, one for the boy and the other for me! The set comes with two glass ramekins and all you need to do is transfer the soufflé mix (best to use a butter knife) from the plastic sealed container to the glass ramekins provided in the set and bake it for 30 minutes at 140°C

Dark chocolate is my FAVOURITE! Although dark chocolate tastes slightly bitter, I'd suggest to indulge in this Belgian Dark Chocolate Soufflés with a few strawberries to balance the taste. 

Which dessert do you love from Woolies/Safeway?
Do you know how to make soufflé at home? I now have two empty glass ramekins which need to be filled up and I'd love to know the recipe if you're willing to share =)


Thursday, 22 September 2011

Review: Palmer's Purifying Mask

My skin type is combination/oily and the only masks which are suitable and work effectively to clear out my pores and draw out impurities from my skin are kaolin clay-based masks. If your skin is dry, a light creamy emollient-based mask is the one for you.

Frankly, Palmers Purifying Mask is my one and only go-to mask for pampering and treating my skin! I’ve been using this mask for about 5 weeks and I find this product very effective and indulgent to use!

Palmer’s Purifying Mask is packaged in a large soft squeeze tube with the cap at the base. This makes dispensing the product so easy when I’ve used up more than 50% of the product.

I use this mask 2-3 times a week and leave if on for about 10 minutes, or when the kaolin clay dries as the natural active ingredients and essential oils from the mask purifies my skin.

Palmer’s Purifying Mask is a relatively thick cream comprised of natural green clay which clears out my clogged pores and natural almond oil to moisturise the skin surface. Although the texture is very thick it was very easy to gently and evenly spread a thin layer of the product across my face and around the eyes.

Immediately after application, my face felt this luxurious cooling sensation that made me feel so relaxed and heavenly! The cooling and hydrating properties of this clay mask comes from the presence of chamomile and primrose oil. Interesting to note is the presence of aloe and cocoa butter which help to soothe my skin and leaving it to appear bright and radiant right after rinsing my face.  I didn’t feel any tightness, redness or dryness after using this mask.

It’s always a soothing experience when I use this mask and since using this mask, my skin is clearer and break-outs are non-existant, besides from 'that time of the month' hormonal break-outs.

Palmer’s Purifying Mask is reasonably priced at A$9.99 for a 120g tube and it will last a very long time, considering you only need to use a small amount 2-3 times a week.  

What are your thoughts on Palmer's Purifying Mask?
 Have you used clay masks before?


Tuesday, 20 September 2011

ASOS Wish List

Popular UK fashion label ASOS has recently launched their Australian ASOS online store and I've had my eyes glued to the screen since the launch of their site! I though I'd share some items in my ASOS wish list,  so here it is...

ASOS Tulip Dress with Tie Back
TFNC Contrast Sash Bandeau Dress
ASOS Petite Exclusive Foldover Halter Sundress
ASOS Petite Asymmetric Frill Cheesecloth Maxi

The Australian ASOS website offers free standard shipping (up to 8 days delivery) to all Australian online orders. 

Have you purchased anything from Australia's ASOS site yet?
Which fashion piece are you lemming at the moment?


Saturday, 17 September 2011

Bloom Cosmetics & April Greaves Belle de Jour Collection

Bloom Cosmetics and reknowned New York based International Makeup Artist April Greaves have collaborated on a brand new makeup collection called Belle de Jour. The inspiration of Belle de Jour originated from Yves Saint Laurent's long-time muse Catherine Deneuve in Luis Bunuel's cult 1966 French film of the same title. Think beautifully contoured eyes, perfectly shaped brows, radiant skin and glossy lush lips. April Greaves was inspired by this look and decided to reinvent this classic iconic look for the modern girl today alongside Bloom Cosmetics.

''Delicate, feminine and alluring. Bloom's Belle de Jour evokes a feeling of classic, cinematic beauty with a French modern twist.''

Belle de Jour includes a four lovely products which boasts multifunctionality:
Waterproof Eye Crayon in Black, Chocolate and Taupe (A$25)
Eye Brow Duo (A$25)
Cream Blush Duo (A$38)
Super Glossy Lips (A$25)

Greaves also created a brand new berry-hued shade: Bloom Lip Duo (A$28)
Belle de Jour Colour Collection will be available 3rd October 2011 at selected Myer store, David Jones and Bloom's Flagship Store (Chapel St., South Yarra, VIC) and online at www.bloomcosmetics.com.au

Images were provided by a PR company.

What do you think of Bloom Cosmetics' collaboration with April Greaves?
Which product would you love to try most?

Friday, 16 September 2011

My First Beauty Box (September)

My excitement had escalated when I received a notice in the mail that a parcel awaits my arrival for collection. I was anticipating for this parcel to be my Beauty Box which I talked about here. The parcel was indeed from Beauty Box YAY! I received a hot pink box with the words Beauty Box written accross and the actual Beauty Box was inside. I think this Beauty Box would be great for makeup storage etc.
September Beauty Box
I haven't tried any of these products before, so I'm keen to try each one. I've tried a different version of Shu Uemura's Cleansing Oil (pink tinted bottle) and Marc Jacobs Lola. I love both of these products that I've used, so I'm very happy to have received a different version of the cleansing oil and the newest Marc Jacobs Fragrance, alongside the products from Sally Hansen, Playboy and YSL.

I guess my expectations were too high on this first box, so I really do hope the next few boxes will come with bigger surprises. I hope the next box will come with colour makeup and nail polish.

Included in this gorgeous box with a hot pink ribbon adorned was a greeting card from Michelle and the Beauty Box Team. On the other side of the card there is information on the products included in this month's box.
Contents of the September Beauty Box includes the following products:
Marc Jacobs 'Oh! Lola!' perfume vials, 1.2 mL each, 3 vials worth A$5.75 (full size 100 ml rrpA$160)
Playboy 'Play It Spicey' Body Spray, 75 mL full size (rrpA$4.49)
Shu Uemura High Performance Balancing Cleansing Oil (suitable for all skin types), 20 mL worth A$4.65 (full size 450ml rrpA$105)
Sally Hansen Everyday Strength Medium Nail File, rrpA$4.95
Yves Saint Laurent Top Secret Beauty Sleep serum, 5 mL worth A$12.40 (full size 40 ml rrpA$99)
I love all the brands associated with Beauty Box and the wonderful deluxe samples included in September's Beauty Box are products that I would use, especially for travel! I will continue to subscribe to Beauty Box as I like to have a few surprises come through the mail

Have you received your September Beauty Box yet?
What do you think of the contents in this month's box?


Thursday, 15 September 2011

Review: Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Faux Pas

Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Faux Pas
Illamasqua Faux Pas was gifted to me when I attended the launch of the new Theatre of the Nameless collection which I've been so excited about recently. Faux Pas is a relatively thick glossy nail varnish which dries quickly to provide a smooth, matte and rubber-like finish. I love this unique rubber-look as it's just so different to all other nail varnishes in my collection.

The first coat goes on completely opaque, however, I'd suggest to apply two coats (as I did in the image above) to prolong the wear, as the unique finish means you need to skip the top coat.  

Other shades in this amazing collection are Kink, Vice and Taint. Visit the Illamasqua website to see the full collection.

**Until Sunday 18th September 2011, Illamasqua is offering free worldwide shipping for purchases over £40. Click here for more info.**
What do you think of the finish of these new Illamasqua nail varnishes?
Have you tried them before?


Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Illamasqua FREE Worldwide shipping

Just a heads up that you could purchase some of the amazing darkly sophisticated shades from the new Illamasqua Theatre of the Nameless collection and the fabulous Illamasqua range online here and receive FREE worldwide shipping with your purchase over £40.

To redeem your free UK delivery, simply enter the promotional code AWUK when you reach the checkout page of the Illamasqua Shop.
To redeem your free international delivery, simply enter the promotional code AW40 at the checkout – when you spend £40 or more.

Offer is available until 11.59pm GMT Sunday 18th September 2011 and applies to one transaction only. 

Have you gotten your hands on the Theatre of the Nameless collection?
Which Illamasqua product is your Holy Grail?


Review: Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Ore

''Deep in an enchanted forest, the scene is set for a sumptuous feast. The chosen have arrived. Where this night will end no one knows. Not even death is inevitable.
Lured by the promise of immortality, a host of fantastical beings try their hand at creating the ever-elusive Elixir of Life. The resulting potions dazzle the eye and ensnare the senses, a beautiful array of jewel-like substances. They may not deny mortality, but they do make the theatre of life a more colourful stage on which to play.

It’s a melting pot of individuals, where ideas are exchanged, and new ones created. A surreal gathering from which the guests might never awake. Which is why this night can never end, and the game must be played for eternity.

So take your place at the table and let the banquet begin.

This is Art of Darkness.''

The Art of Darkness Collection includes bold, dark and metallic finish cosmetics to ''bring out your bold side''. Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Ore is part of the Art of Darkness A/W 2010 Collection. 

Ore is such a gorgeous shimmery metallic gold/bronze shade that you really have to see it to believe how incredibly pretty this gold irridescent pigment really is! This pure pigment has a gazzilion minute shimmer's which makes it so versatile! Apply Ore to your eyes lightly for a hint of shimmer or heavily for a beautiful Goddess look, add some to the cheeks and even to your collar bone for that extra bit of spark. This is why I love pigments, especially Ore as it is so versatile and convenient!   

Illamasqua- ''Made to be played with. A metallic, high-shine, pure-colour powder that highlights eyes, cheeks and brows. Mix with eye shadow, blusher or use it on its own to intense effect. Bring out your bold side.''

Have you tried Ore before?
Which Illamasqua Pure Pigments do you LOVE?