I’ve had to work really hard to cull this list down to ‘just five’ products for Lou’s Faves – August. It’s been months since I did one of these posts (on account of my blogging holiday which was crucial to allow me to ‘defrag’). Subsequently there’s a bunch of stuff I’m itching to share with you – so restraint was required! Here’s what made the cull.

 Radiant Vivid Shimmer Brick – Makeup Revolution

Radiant Vivid Shimmer Brick - Makeup Revolution

Spoiler alert… This is headed for my Favourite products of 2016 blog post!

This shimmer brick was an impulse purchase back in June, while I was watching the Brexit drama unfold on the telly. After half a bottle of red to drown my sorrows (I’m first generation Kiwi, both my parents are Brits) I realised the value of the pound was falling plummeting against other currencies. This made it an opportune time to go shopping. Bloody ASOS had crashed, so I had a mini spend up (NZ$60) on Makeup Revolution’s website. Little did I know Beauty Bliss, here in En-zed, is a stockist. Opps.

I’ve often eyed up Bobbi Brown’s shimmer brick but the NZ$66 price tag makes my bum pucker, particularly as I don’t really need it. When I spotted Makeup Revolution’s  shimmer brick version, I thought it looked like a good dupe and, for $5.40 I was willing to give it a crack.

Oh. I’m so glad I got it.  I’ve worn the shimmer brick most days since it arrived and it’s seen my much loved MAC Soft & Gentle highlighter be banished to the back of my cupboard.  How do you wear it? There’s a few options. I generally sweep a small blush brush through all five shades on the compact and dust it lightly on my cheekbone, where the light usually hits the face. The result is a gorgeous glow and I look more alive (as opposed to knackered after six hours sleep which is all I get far too often). I also wear it just as a blush and, get this, as an eyeshadow. Yup, I pack the colour (a mix, or sometimes just one shade) all over my eyelids, on top of an eye primer. Next, I sweep a matt brown colour through my crease: Good to go!  Sorry, no picture of me wearing it, I can’t get a photo that does it justice. You’ll have to trust me! 

Tip:  If you have laughter lines/crows feet/wrinkles like me, make sure you pop this just on the cheekbones, not too high up under your eyes. Light sparkly products attract light – and attention…  I dunno about you: But I don’t want to be drawing extra attention to ‘dem lines.

I’ve got my eyes on this palette next from Makeup Revolution.

Greek Yogurt with Paleo Chocolate Muesli

Wishbone 3One of the perks of being a blogger is that, occasionally, I’m offered samples of product to try out. Wishbone contacted me recently, ahead of the launch of their new online store with nationwide delivery, to see if I’d be up to try out some goodies. Would I? Ah, yes.  My highlight of visiting Auckland or Wellington when I travel with work is my inevitable visit to Wishbone.  I’m obsessed with their wraps (my fave is the brunch wrap), soups and meals in general.  Oh, and their coffee.

Wishbone sent me a Greek yogurt with a Paleo chocolate muesli to try out, it’s Greek yogurt topped with Paleo muesli. The muesli topping contains: Almond, cashew, cranberry, sunflower seeds, coconut, honey, linseed, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon and, get this, a decadent smidgen of 70% Belgian dark chocolate. Talk about take the humble muesli to a whole new level… I was seriously excited when it arrived, as it looked delicious, but I was a good girl and found some willpower and popped it into the fridge for brekky on the weekend.

Unfortunately, my husband also thought it looked delicious.  By the time breakfast on the weekend rocked around, I discovered the ratbag had already cracked into it and had demolished half of it. I hit him up and expletives were issued. Hubby was defensive: “It was so good I couldn’t stop eating it!”  Quietly, I’m impressed he managed to stop half way through: It’s ‘off the hook good’: Decadent and delicious and I’m going to buy a few more online.

Click here to order yourself some. For Pete’s sake – hide it in the back of the fridge. I’m hiding my next lot in the vegetable drawer. The boys don’t go there.

Truly Madly Guilty – By Liane Moriarty

review Truly Madly Guilt Liane Moriarty

I’ll read anything by Liane Moriaty. She’s top notch and I purchase her books without reading the blurb. They are good quality chick lit, usually keep you hanging a bit, but not in that “holy shit I can’t sleep, that was scary scary” blood pumping kind of way, more a “hmm, I need to know where this is headed” kinda way.  On that note, some people have referred to this book as a thriller: It’s not. That’s ridic.

The story centres around three couples that have it ALL going on. There’s a troubled marriage, a cellist on the cusp of the audition of her life, a daughter with a secret, hoarding, IVF and a resentful friendship.  Underpinning all of this is the question: “What the hell happened that night at the BBQ?” The BBQ, incidentally, was hosted at  the home of my favourite character, Vid. he’s an extroverted foodie who loves nothing more than to feed people and think about his next meal (I can relate). Vid is married to sexy Tiffany, who has quite the entertaining past.  In my head, FYI, she looks like Eva Longoria. Moriarty writes about sex and relationships in a way that feels exciting and authentic. We all like to lose ourselves in a story similar to the plot of a tubev.sex video from time to time after all.

Anyway, I won’t give away the punchline, but the crux is all three couples continue to fret over the events of that fateful night and, consequently, the damage that night could have on relationships and their future.  The yarn about the three couples kept me well engrossed, as did the surprises unfolding that I didn’t see coming (no, I didn’t read the last chapter this time!).  This story will be headed for the big screen, mark my word. I’m still working out who I’d cast in addition to Eva, noting, as the book is set in Aussie, we need actors that can do a quality Aussie accent.

Well worth a read. I downloaded my Truly Madly Guilty onto my eReader as I was headed away to the snow when I bought it. It might surprise you to learn I do own an eReader I just prefer ‘old skool’ hard cover books. I like the smell of them… The feel of them in my hands… Anyone else with me? Prefer books in your hand?

Urban Humbug Pant by Ketz-ke

Ketzke humbug pantThese Humbug pants from Ketz-ke are neither beauty or food related, but who cares?!   These pants, from Kiwi designer Ketz-ke are, quite simply, the most comfortable pants I’ve ever owned. 95% rayon, 5% spandex: This is a winning combo.

I love the look, as well as the feel, so much so I had to buy a second pair, in plain black. The black ones are the ultimate dress up and dress down item – I actually wear them to work paired with an ankle boot. No-one has outed me yet as wearing trackies to work.  I wear them on the weekend with ankle boots and a funky top, or with my beloved hoodie and my Converse trainers. Anything goes.

But, best of all, they have an elasticated waist which means reliability: You can eat as much as you like and they should still fit.  I was a bit sceptical about the cross over front style, but Donna in my favourite Rotorua shop, Willow, swore they’d be flattering when she suggested I try them on: She’s right, the fabric disguises my wobbly ‘lost my core’ tummy. Bonus.

You can buy them online here (free delivery NZ wide). Best $139  I have spent this year. Pricey for trackies, for sure, but totes worth it.  I already know I’m wearing these on the plane to Melbourne in October.

Here’s a pic of me wearing them with a splendid bird’s nest Mum bun paired up with my favourite fluro pink Charlo top that has been mistaken once for active wear. Oh and last year’s denim jacket from MAX which gets thrashed.

Ketz-ke humbug pant


L’oreal Mythic Shimmering Oil


Loreal mythic oil shimmering oilFrom trackies, to an indulgent oil that you can use on your skin and hair to get a gorgeous sparkle and feel glitzy and glam… That’s how I roll. 

My mate Emily had this, showed it to me – and I had to have it! I previously thought that shimmering oil was for ‘youngies’ hitting the clubs, or for skinny young chicks to wear all over their bod when they are wearing revealing clothes. Nah, I got it wrong. Anyone can wear this!  This is a shimmer oil containing gold particles that I use  on my body or hair for a special night out, or when I just want to feel a bit spesh.  The result is soft feeling hair, shiny looking hair and/or skin and a feeling that you’ve totally indulged yourself! 

Application wise, you use it on dry hair as a finishing touch. Here I shake the life out of the bottle (to redistribute the gold particles) and spray two pumps onto the palm of my hands, rub my hands together, and apply it through it through the lengths of my hair.  As well as adding shine, the oil tames my blasted fly-aways, gets rid of any fluffiness: My hair looks like I just stepped out of a salon. Winner.  For the skin same deal, apply a LITTLE BIT it to the hands and rub it over your skin – gorgeous on the decolletage if you’ve got a low cut top on!  Don’t spray a heap of it straight onto your skin like my Mum did:  You’ll look like a disco ball. Take note as well not to apply to much to your hair, otherwise it’ll look greasy (been there, done that – got the t-shirt). 

I need to mention the scent, which is glorious. It’s definitely of the floral variety, due to the magnolia essential oil ingredients. This isn’t usually my cup of tea at all, but I adore this scent and I find myself sniffing my arms and hair all day.  I’ve found it has an amazing, calming effect on me…

Before I forget: If you are starting to ponder your Christmas shopping list and you have a special someone obsessed with beauty products –

This would make a great gift (I’ll remind you closer to Christmas). It feels and looks super luxurious, especially as it comes in a glass bottle, though admittedly this isn’t ideal if you have tiles on your bathroom floor!

Where to buy? Buy from hair salons that stock L’Oreal. I got mine from Rotorua’s Salon St Bruno, however they have sold out at the time of writing this blog post and are awaiting a delivery! You can also get it from Strawberry Net.  Price, I paid around NZ$40 for this, the 100ml bottle will last you AGES.

loreal mythic shimmering oil
Fluffy hair – all gone!