Beauty

Lou’s April Favourites

Here’s the round-up of my beauty and foodie favourites for the month of April!

MAC Whole Lotta Love Pro Longwear Blush

I’ve had this hot pink/red blush for ages, lost it, refound it again (under the passenger seat of my car) and I’m not letting it out of my sight. Whole Lotta Love is a Pro Longwear blush that was recommended to me at Britomart’s Pro Mac store.  I mentioned to the sales assistant that I was in the market for a new blush, something that had no coral or peach tones (as I seem to own a tonne of these). I was steered in the direction of some bright pink in the form of Whole Lotta Love. I was nervous I’d ended up looking like a dolly, but clearly, I didn’t.  Certainly a super light hand is needed with this bright pink blush, but I love the ‘just got back from exercise’ look it gives my complexion, along with the awesome pigmentation and long lasting wear. This is my first Pro Longwear Blush – and I’m going to predict it won’t be my last. Note the pic below doesn’t quite show how vibrant it is!mac whole lotta love blush review

 

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Micellar Water – Miraculous or over-hyped?

loreal micellar water reviewI know this is probably the worst introduction to a piece of writing, ever, but it’s taken me six weeks of procrastination to write this blog post about micellar water. 

In case you missed all the hype, micellar cleansing water popped up on the NZ beauty market recently. Beauty PR teams were creaming themselves largely over Garnier’s Micellar Water which is widely touted as a dupe of Bioderma’s micellar water (which has done the beauty equivalent of ‘gone viral).

Being an avid reader of beauty blogs I first learnt about this so-called ‘miracle’ cleansing water a few years ago and I was itching to road test it to see how it compared against my beloved (albeit kinda pricey) Clinique Take the Day Off Balm which I use every night to take all my makeup off (or Coconut Oil when I’m attempting to reduce my beauty spend, snort…). After the ‘face is off’ I move onto proper cleansing (using warm water, a flannel and a cleanser).

As you can imagine, after learning micellar water had hit NZ shores six weeks back,  I was in like Flynn. There commenced serious stalking of all my local supermarkets, Farmers and pharmacies daily (don’t judge me, I was on holiday after just moving to Rotorua). Finally, I found some. Having given up trying to find Garnier’s offering, instead, I purchased L’Oreal’s equivalent (which, I’d heard was better than Garnier’s).   So, with micellar water finally in my hot little hand, I skipped home with alacrity to take off all my makeup. It was 10.00am, I didn’t care. This is research people, research. (more…)

Empties – A round up

I haven’t done one of these ‘beauty empties’ posts before!   I stumbled across one recently on another beauty blog and enjoyed it and figured I’d give writing one a crack. This thought was superb timing as a heap of my beauty products have run out all at the same bloody time (grumble).  Here’s a whistle-stop tour of my thoughts on each product!

empties

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Maybelline Colour Drama – Lip Crayon Review

Your comfort zone is a beautiful placeWhen it comes to lipstick I’m so stuck in my comfort zone, it’s ridiculous. I am a massive fan of a bold smokey eye and a nude lip. So much so that, even though I own more bold lipsticks than I care to admit, I’m constantly rocking variations of the same thing, day in, day out: Bold eyes and, more often than not MAC’s Syrup lipstick (which is the same colour as my lips, but better). Anyway, off the back of hearing a quote which really struck a chord with me recently (“your comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there”)  I decided not to get too deep and meaningful on it, rather just have a have a sweep out of some cobwebs and revisit my boring lipstick ways. Start small girls, start small.

Maybelline colour drama lip crayon reviewEnter a trip to Taupo with an hour to kill whilst my hubby was at the accountant recently. I figured there was no better place to invest an hour than at Farmers, aimlessly browsing the beauty aisles.  Yes, it’s true. I didn’t even get as far as the clothing or accessories: In the beauty aisle I stayed.  I must say, I found it very hard not to tap into my former retail/customer service and sales training background and serve overwhelmed beauty customers. Anyway, I digress (just for a change).  There I am at Maybelline stand when… Shock! What’s this? Jumbo lip crayons in an array of pretty colours? When did these get released?  A while ago it seems (early 2015). Clearly I’ve been living under a rock. I wasn’t impressed: Usually I pride myself for being bang on with beauty trends. Sniff.

I’m mortified to admit that it took at least ten minutes of indecision to choose from the rather limited selection of scrummy colours. I tossed and turned between two bold colours ‘Pink so Chic’ (which isn’t really pink at all, rather a deep plum) and ‘Berry Much’ (a deep berry colour). At a very affordable price point of $11.99 I don’t know why I mucked about: These lip crayons are so bloody good, I should have snapped a couple of ’em (at least). Finally I settled on ‘Pink so Chic’ and I’m LOVING it and it hasn’t left the makeup bag that resides nearby in my handbag (as opposed to the makeup bag in the top draw of my bathroom, or the makeup bag that’s on top of my makeup trolley, or my professional makeup kit, oh, or the emergency makeup stash in the car…)

Maybelline colour drama lip crayon review
Maybelline Colour Lip Drama in the colour ‘Pink So Chic’

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Super Speedy and Foolproof Bronze Eyeshadow Look

Super speedy eyeshadow is my favourite. So is a bronze eyeshadow look.  

I watch a lot of makeup tutorials on You Tube and read a lot of beauty blogs. I’ve been musing lately how detailed and complicated makeup is becoming with a lot of the beauty gurus I follow (not all, but definitely some). So much so, I was inspired to go against the grain and do something a bit more simple. Something you can whack on and be out the door in 5 minutes and it looks like you’ve gone to oodles of effort…

Products used

Super Speedy and Foolproof Bronze Eyeshadow Look
See where the brush is placed? That medium matt brown colour? That’s what I used. It’s Creme Brulee from Makeup Geek and I FREAKING love it.

If you are a bit of a newbie when it comes to makeup, the product above might still look like a lot but I promise, you only need a few things! (more…)

Lou Loves – January Favourites

I’m sure I only just hit ‘publish’ on my 2015 favourites – and now it’s time for January’s faves! I struggled to limit what made my ultimate favourites this month, as there’s been loads of makeup I’m loving (partly as a result of my USA haul arriving when my little brother paid courier delivery man on his holiday home to NZ). Here’s what made my relentless cull!

L’oreal Volume Million Lashes Mascara (waterproof)

I’ve had a few doozies with impulse purchase mascaras in the last year, but I hit the jackpot this time with Volume Million Lashes Mascara: It’s a game-changer that has BOOTED Maybelline’s  Falsies Mascara out of my first place ranking.  Why? We’ve had a hot and muggy summer here in Hawke’s Bay and even with the Falsies (waterproof), I’ve got unattractive black mascara smudges up around my browbone (cheers mugginess and oily eyelids).  I had resigned myself to just putting up with smudging in the summer. Cue Volume Million lashes: Boom! No smudging, no budging: This stuff stays put all day and I have long spidery and super volumised lashes!

Oh, I also love how it applies quite dry. Let me explain: Have you encountered how some new mascaras apply really wet and you end up with it everywhere? This drives me nuts: With new mascara I always wipe excess mascara off the wand with a tissue, which upsets me because it’s super wasteful. Anyhow, with Volume Million Lashes you kind of have to yank the (anti-clump) wand out of the mascara tube and, ah, because it’s got a really tight hole you don’t end up with a truckload of mascara on the wand. Genius.  I can’t wax lyrical about this mascara enough. I even love the packaging.  Be warned though, you need a good waterproof eye makeup remover to get this waterproof goodness off (Neutrogena is great, Clinique’s Take The Day Off Balm is even better). Price: NZ$35 (9ml tube). Get it from Farmers, Kmart, Pharmacies, etc.

volume million lashes loreal review

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Lou’s 2015 Beauty Favourites

Alrighty, this is a big blog post! Rather than do my usual December favourites round-up of beauty foodie items that are spinning my wheels, I’ve done a serious navel gaze and come up with my Tip Top Beauty Faves for 2015 (and a few books). Upon reflection, I’m surprised, yet really pleased, at how many products fall into the ‘super affordable’ category. It just goes to show – it pays to shop around to get beauty bang for buck. Note, I toyed with including foodie faves in here: But the post is already bigger than Ben Hur. So beauties: Enjoy!

Hair

Remington Hot Pink Curl It ReviewRemington Hot Pink Curl it – I’ve got a blog post coming soon on this ceramic conical hair curling contraption. Frankly, it deserves a full write-up as this impulse purchase has me grinning like a Cheshire cat. It’s got 10 heat settings, ranging from 120C to a high heat setting of 210C. Simply by winding your hair around the tong you get a stunning shiny curl in 7-10 seconds. Since having lots of my hair lopped off I can get a head full of bouncy curls in under 10 minutes. The girls at work were admiring my curly locks recently and asked me to take this into the office to do a demo. They were sold and I understand this affordable hair gadget made a few wish Christmas wish-lists! NZ$53 from Briscoes in one of their mega sales (I point blank refuse to pay full price for anything at Briscoes). (more…)

Lou Loves – November favourites

image
Check. Out. This. Stash.

November. What a whirlwind that was. I was in my element zooming around the countryside, largely with work, loving every minute of it. For someone who has an office-based role, I’ve done a damn good job recently of not spending much time actually in the office! We also got a new bathroom at home, which meant for three looonnng weeks we were trudging backwards and forwards to Mum’s house to shower (my work trips were timely, I was sending home texts that said “just had a lovely bath” – meanie, eh?!). On a negative note though, my blog suffered a little bit, I hope nobody noticed too much – for a wee while there I was posting once a week, that was about all I could manage without going cuckoo! Eek). As for December and Christmas – I’m in complete denial, I haven’t done anything, no planning, no present buying: Nothing. I’m not sure I’ll start for another week or so either, there’s too much happening! (more…)