Thursday, 29 August 2013

Eve Lom Cleanser Balm

Ladies and gentleman, may I introduce to you my life saver?
For reasons I still cannot place, my skin has been having a freak out of epic proportions for the last couple of months. It didn't matter what I did or didn't do; added or took away from my skincare, makeup, diet etc. I had the kind of break outs I was experiencing in my most pimpliest of pubescence stages.
I have always invested in good quality skin care, but I had to considered the possibility that my skin had changed slightly and it was confused by what I was applying to it. Enter: the Eve Lom Cleanser.
This stuff is the original cleansing balm. Vogue magazine quoted it "probably the best cleanser in the world" - so we can assume it has something going for it, right? I did. I'm so very glad that is the case. I've been using it for a few weeks now and my skin is almost back to its smooth, blemish-free self.
This balm has five active ingredients: clove oil, eucalyptus oil, hops oil, Egyptian chamomile oil and cocoa butter. Each of these oils have a specific purpose, from antiseptic/anti-toxin properties to toning, soothing to moisturising. The box also includes a muslin cloth which is excellent for added exfoliation.
This is my first cleansing balm, so I can't compare to other favourites (such as the Emma Hardie balm), but what I can say is that if you don't have a balm in your current routine I strongly recommend you go out and get yourself one. It removes makeup, dirt and oil like nobody's business.
I use this nightly for my second cleanse, after using Cetaphil as my first. I find that this way I get the bulk of the makeup etc. off before allowing the balm to do its thing. On that note, people who either don't do a double cleanse at night and/or don't use a cleansing balm will be amazed at how much undesirable grime is left on your face. If you find that your toner acts at removing left over waste as well, then I absolutely recommend a double cleanse. My cottonwool pad never has makeup anymore!

The cleanser is for all skin types and is recommended to be used nightly, although they suggest twice a day for congested skin. Eve Lom accompany this cleanser with a weekly facial technique that can also be found here. This ritual is designed to assist in the decongestion of your skin.

It has a reasonably strong herbal smell that I wasn't too keen on to start with but now I just associate it with cleanliness. I also find the smell as I massage it into my face really relaxing.

I truly love this stuff even despite the price - it's $69.30 for 50ml. Although I got it for $68.50 at Huge savings there!

If you're in the market for a cleanser or have looked at this in the past, unsure of whether to take the gamble - I absolutely recommend it!

Have you tried the Eve Lom Cleanser balm? I'd love to know your favourite alternatives for it too!

Rachel x

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P.P.S. Sorry for such a long post, but I just really had to share with you all my thoughts.

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Wednesday, 28 August 2013

August Empties

Imperial Leather Foam Burst 200g; Swisspers Original Facial Wipes 25 ($6.30); Cotton Tips 100 pk; The Bath House Spa Sensation Salts; L'Oreal Paris Gentle Eye Make-Up Remover 125ml ($12.99); Grace Cole Lavender Apothecary Shower Gel 100ml.

Seeing as though it's only two days left until the end of August I thought I could conclude my empties now so that I can throw them out!

No make-up finished this month but that keeps me happy because it means that I still have it all to use! I hate throwing out makeup - even when there's not a skerrick left.

My empties this month were basically made up of bath care when I come to look at it. I've been having a weekly bath as a form a relaxation. I live in a house with three other boys - I need some girl time set aside!

With that in mind, the first item I call to your attention is the Cussons Imperial Leather Foamburst in Ocean Breeze (Sea kelp & Birch bark). I love this stuff!! It comes out as a gel and then foams into an exorbitant amount of soapy foam - exactly like shaving gel. This product turns into a ridiculous amount of foam - it's kind of amazing. Having said that it is a soap, so if you find you get dry skin from shower gels that aren't soap free you will probably have an issue with this one. Especially as it's foam as well, rather than milk. I am well on my way to finishing the Tropical Sunset (Coconut & Tiare Flower) scent in this and have Japanese Spa ( Jasmine & Green Tea) and Summer Zest (Mandarin, Lemon & Ylang Ylang) waiting in line. They all smell awesome and it lasts for a good amount of time after your shower.

Next up are the Swisspers Original facial wipes. Yes, yes, we all know they are the cardinal sin of skin care. We also know that the majority of us have them! I'm putting it out there that I have a good skin care routine. But there are some nights where it's just not going to happen. I really liked these wipes for those times. They don't contain alcohol and managed to remove a decent amount of makeup. The material was lovely and soft. These are really gentle but also feel refreshing and soothing. I know they're not the best option, but they're better than nothing!

I then finished a little bottle of bath salts which came in a gift pack I received a long time ago. I'm almost embarrassed how long I've had it. But as I said, I've really been loving my baths at the moment and this was used up pretty quickly. It's the Spa Sensations range from a brand called The Bath House. However, as I got this such a long time ago, the set is no longer available. There are lots of lovelies on their site though, so I recommend having a look.  Anyways, this had a lovely, heavy scent with ginger and aloe. I generally don't like ginger in any form, but this was not distinguishable and made for a relaxing bath. I didn't find it did much in terms of nourishment for my skin but it definitely added to the ambience. I really liked this and, having found their website, think I might invest in The Bath House in the future.

I also finished this lavender shower gel from Grace Cole's Lavender Apothecary range which can be found here. This was really lovely. I used it as a bubble bath and it did bubble up quite well, although they didn't last for the whole time. I love the smell of lavender so this really did add to the relaxation. Again, I'm not sure how much this did for my skin -as it's really a shower gel it is aimed at getting you spick and span. I also have the accompanying body cream which smells amaze-balls. I would definitely purchase again from this brand, although I did receive this in another gift pack if my memory serves me correctly.

I also finished up a pack of cotton tips. A girl must always have cotton tips, it's a known fact. These were a 100 pack from Chemmart where I work. Nothing much to say about them really. They're cotton tips. But hey, they're finished!

Finally, the only thing I used up in skincare recently is my L'Oreal Paris Gentle Eye Make-Up Remover. I've never been overly fussy which eye makeup remover I use. However, I have actually repurchased this. It's really soothing and gets the job done well. Just a simple, water-based remover; it's made with sensitive eyes in mind so it's perfect for contact lens wearers as well. I personally don't have any sensitivity to speak of but I just really like the light feel of this. Also available is the Eye an Lip Make-Up Remover, but I seem to remember this feeling a little more harsh on my skin. I'm not sure why though, it was a while ago and I only used it once. It has a mild rose scent - not strong enough to put off rose-scent-haters! This just smells fresh and clean and makes your eyes feel the same. What more is there for it to do?

So there are my empty, finished products from the month of August. I'm so, so excited to say goodbye to Winter and welcome Spring back with open arms! Today was the first day I could stand in the sun with a singlet on and soak in Vitamin D. It was heaven! Fingers crossed that this weather is here to stay now!

Have you used any of the products I finished this month? What were your thoughts?

Rachel x

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Tuesday, 27 August 2013

KMS California Colour Vitality Review

I have naturally blonde hair and have, for quite a while now, been maintaining it with foils/highlights. I've been very lucky as my hair's always been healthy and I rarely find split ends. My go-to shampoo and conditioner has always been from the Matrix range with the addition of the Matrix Silver Shampoo. This time around, however, I felt like a change.

Originally, I walked into Hairhouse Warehouse intending on purchasing from the Redken Blonde Glam range. As per usual, luck was not with me - there were no conditioners on the shelf to match the shampoo! Well I couldn't very well buy two different brands - it had to be a set! So after talking to the lovely lady in the store I walked out with KMS California Colour Vitality Blonde Shampoo and the accompanying conditioner.

I'll start with the shampoo - I really wasn't sure if I liked this to start off with. I have no idea why. Maybe it's just that I'd been using the lovely Matrix for so long that anything else didn't feel right... Who knows? After 3 or so days, however, I began to get into it. The consistency is not as thick as the Matrix shampoo, but with a little more product it does foam up well. Even though it is a blonde shampoo, I don't leave this on for  extended time. I still use my Matrix Silver Shampoo in between this and my conditioner which I love to use to keep my ideal tone. The Colour Vitality Blonde Shampoo certainly leaves my hair sparkly clean too, I just don't get to enjoy that luxurious feel of Matrix.

The Colour Vitality Conditioner is something I adapted to far more easily. I have a habit of using too much product when it comes to conditioner. This one is so moisturising and feels lovely and thick on application. I need the tiniest of amounts to cover my head. In turn, its helped me become far more economical in the conditioner-ing of my hair!

This duo leaves my locks feeling light as a feather and silky clean. It's helped keep my blonde hair free of brassy tones and adds a bit of life to my otherwise dull hair. Having said that, I'm not sure if I'll repurchase in the future. I still want to try the Redkin range which I think will be my next buy.

Have you tried the KMS California range? Let me know what you thought, or any other products that you would recommend for blonde hair!

Until next time,

Rachel x

P.S. You might have noticed in the above picture my kitten, Frankie. You will most likely be seeing more of him in the future. Especially as it's ridiculously hard to get him out of a photograph!

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Monday, 26 August 2013

Maybelline Mega Plush Volum' Express

Another day, another mascara. It's a real problem I'm developing. This one I've had for a while now. I've given it a good amount of time. It's time to be honest though - I just don't know how I feel about the Maybelline Mega Plush Volum' Express. 

When it all comes down to it, the actual product that is applied to the lashes is good. I don't mind it's consistency - the gel-mousse formula lives up to its hype and leaves the lashes soft and supple. I'm not sure if it's just me, but I found it a little more difficult to remove than other mascaras I've been using of late. I'm not using an oil-based remover so perhaps that could be the reason.
I also am happy with the brush, even though it uses rubber bristles. I find that it distributes the product well and it builds up nicely with a few coats. Just don't let each layer dry between applications.

The problem comes down to the stem of the wand. I really, really dislike the bendy wand. It has a break within the stick that is supposed to allow for more flexibility and coverage. However, all I've found with it is that it makes it harder to apply a nice thick coat. It doesn't allow for much resistance against the lashes. There are others within the Volum' Express range have the same feature - including the Falsies Flared.
I get that a lot of people love these mascaras; I just can't get into it! I'm quite upset about it. I much prefer my Rimmel Scandal Eyes Lycra Flex Mascara which I bought at around the same time.
Sorry Maybelline, I still do love you!
Have you tried the Mega Plush Volum' Express Mascara? Let me know what your own thoughts are!
Rachel x

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Thursday, 22 August 2013

Review: Maybelline Colour Tattoo 24 Hour Cream Gel Shadow

A while ago in my wanderings along aisles I noticed these little pots - the Maybelline Colour Tattoo 24 Hour Cream Gel Shadow. Phew - that's a seriously long title! I instantly fell in love with Inked in Pink, a beautiful dusty pink colour. I have since gone out and purchased Bad to the Bronze, a lovely bronze without too much gold. It's perfect for a darker smoky brown eye.

There are 9 shades in the range including Tenacious Teal, Pomegranate Punk and Fierce & Tangy. They all look beautiful - in fact I intend to go out and get myself Tenacious Teal very soon.

Each of these pots are of a metallic cream make-up. They are well pigmented and last well. I don't know if the 24 hours is truthful, although I don't have my make-up on for that long so I shouldn't say. I am genuinely loving these shadows. At first glance I thought the cream would be too dry to work with but upon applying to the lid it was smooth and built up very well. And the blending! Oh, the blending! It is more evident with Bad to the Bronze as Inked in Pink is closer to a flesh colour, but the product blends really beautifully! They can be built up really well, from a sheer shimmer to an intensive smack of colour.

As you can see they are highly reflective which is down to their metallic makeup. Don't fear though, when worn on they will not be as unforgiving as in these photos - I had a flash directly on them. The shimmer is noticeable but I wouldn't define the product as a glittery.

These are great as a base for powder shadows, but they are so lovely and pigmented that they stand well on their own.

Have I convinced you yet? They are available for just $11.95 at Priceline.

Rachel x

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Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Shopping Haul

Sorry for the time it's taken to post again! What, with Uni going back and everything, I've been a little preoccupied. It's no excuse! Time to pick up my act again. You can expect posts far more often from now on. In my absence, however, I have been shopping.

I may have gone a little crazy the other day... Many times after a spending spree I get that unavoidable sense of guilt and/or sadness when I look at the bank balance. However, this time I'm still pretty chuffed with my purchases. I thought I'd share!

Real Techniques Foundation Brush & Stippling Brush.

I have already invested in Sam Chapman's brushes and I've been wanting to add a little more to my collection. These are two basics. I had hoped that the Foundation brush would be slightly thicker. I like the angled bristles though and am really excited to try this brush. The Stippling brush was exactly as I had expected however. Both brushes have the lovely softness that I've come to expect from Real Techniques. I love all these brushes.

I was interested in trying a product from the EcoTools range. I have also been in need of a new concealer brush so I thought I'd give this one a go. I really am impressed with the affordability of this brand. The brush is made of taklon bristles (the same artificial material as the Real Technique line) which mean 100% free of animal cruelty! Other materials used such as the metal ferrule (the band containing the bristles) are of recycled products. The brand also participates in 1% For The Planet which is a program where they donate 1% of their overall sales to environmental organizations. I just really like the feeling of being good to the planet! I haven't properly used this brush yet, but I think I'm already sold. I'll let you all know.

Australis Crème Colour (Flirtatious Pink)
This is my first crème blusher (*gasp*). I know. How embarrassing. In my defence, I'm a poor Uni student and it's never been a product on the top of my agenda. But as I already had my arms full of items I thought I'd chuck this in too and finally own a cream blush. I have to put it out there: I'm not totally blown away with this product yet. However, I haven't used it enough yet to properly make a conclusion. I will definitely be reviewing this little one in the future, so stay tuned!

Sally Hansen Cuticle Erase + Balm
I'm yet to trial this, but I'm quite looking forward to it. It's one of the first Sally Hansen products that I have bought. I have had a real problem with my cuticles lately and I'm hoping this is my miracle product. It has white tea and cucumber within its ingredients which also sucked me in. Stay tuned for my thoughts on this one!

I have recently had a hair cut, much to many of my acquaintances dismay. I basically cut it all off. I'd had long hair for a while and now I don't have no idea what to do with it. I saw this advertised and thought I'd give it run. It's yet to be used. Rest assured, I will definitely be reviewing this it. One thing I can say already is that it smells amaze-balls. I'd use it for that reason alone.

Rimmel ScandalEyes Mascara (001 Black)

I have a growing collection of mascaras. This one I was convinced to try after reading and watching Amy's blog at The Camera's Lying. I really love my mascara with a big fat wand. Volume is important to me - especially as I suck at putting falsies on - and I like anything that makes my lashes look bigger and bolder. Rimmel ScandalEyes certainly does this for me. Not to sure about a few other things though. I'll be writing my thoughts soon.

Maybelline Colour Tattoo (25 Bad to the Bronze)
I've already got this product in Inked in Pink. I really love the metallic cream and it lasts beautifully. I really wanted a bronze shadow and saw this recommended on Nouvelle here. Essentially, I put two and two together and decided this was the one for me. They're really great little pots. Go Maybelline.

Revlon Colour Stay Foundation (150 Buff)
Lover of foundations that I am, I grabbed this on my way to the counter. I have used it before; it was actually my go-to foundation during my school years. Back before I ever knew of the wonders of Chanel, Estee and Nars. I know that this is one of the favourite long wear foundations available in drugstores, but I just can't appreciate it as much having experienced high end alternatives. I know, I'm a snob! I hate admitting it. This is still a really good foundation though, good coverage, good lasting power. It's just not as good as my new favourites.
All of the products listed above are available in store or online at Priceline as well as their own sites which I have listed. Thanks for reading and subscribe!
Rachel xx
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