Archive for June, 2010

Review: EOS Lip Balm

Isn’t this just the CUTEST little lip balm you have ever seen?! No? Well show me your vote for the title ‘cos I ain’t ever seen no balm cuter than this egg-shaped ball of delight!

The ball of delight in question is Evolution of Smooth Lip Balm which ticks all the boxes for a seriously awesome product.

These are:

– Cheap ( I paid $3.50 US)
– No nasties – the balm is 100% natural and 95% USDA certified organic, paraben-free, petrolatum-free and gluten-free.
– Amazing scent. I have the ‘Summer Fruits’ flavour that smells just like the sour gummi peach rings I have been inhaling over here, and this balm has been doing a fantastic job of sating my cravings!
– Long lasting formula (even when I have a sneaky taste of my yum-tasting peach balm)
– Gives a light coating with subtle sheen that isn’t at all sticky.
– Super hydrating. Chock-full of vitamin E, shea butter and jojoba oil it has softened and hydrated my lips more than any other balm I’ve used – in just one day!
– It’s fun! The bright colours and novel egg shape with twist top makes pulling this out of my bag a joy! I’ve also been entertained testing out the different ways to apply with said egg – lips all the way around the ball and twist? Or regular top-then-bottom application?
– The egg is hard enough to not smoosh as you push it against your lips, but the balm comes off super easily. How do they do it?!
– And just when I thought I could fault it – the Lemon Drop flavour saves the day with its SPF 15 protection. Winner!

As you can tell, I’m in love with this balm and am considering stocking up the suitcase (if I can fit anything else in – nearly broke my back trying to pick it up this morning!) before I come home… and then ordering some more online! EOS ships to Australia for US $15 dollars.

A Little Bitta Colour!

It’s fantastic how the small things can really lift your mood when you’re feeling a little off or down… commonly verbalised with super articulate sounds such as ‘meh’ or ‘blah’.

A few days ago this was me, meh-ing and blah-ing all over town. A recent post from Primped’s Zoe Foster spoke of beauty maintenance routines, which left my heart a little heavy. What maintenance routine? Being overseas means mine has basically disappeared. My brows were out of control, nails long and scraggy (I didn’t bring clippers) and then there are areas we just should not even go into.

It may sound a little superficial, but the few weeks of feeling ‘unkept’ had taken its toll on me – and I would only have a fairly basic regular beauty routine. (Can’t imagine the high-mainty girls!) Sure, I was still using my skincare, but I needed a lift – and to get my nails cut!

So I headed out for a mini-tidy up. I say mini as that’s all my rapidly (rapidly, as in one of those out of control trains rapidly hurtling along train tracks to the broken bridge that are always on cartoons) dwindling bank account would allow me.

I got my eyebrows threaded (interesting experience – more to come) and my nails attended to with a $7 manicure.

I took along an Essie polish I had purchased that morning – Carousel Coral (US $8).

I basically skipped out of the nail salon. Having this pretty coral on neatly shaped nails x 10 was a joy to my eyes (and my de-fuzzed brows a joy to others’ eyes!) So glad I’ve got the bottle to re-do this, as I think it will suit the forthcoming California leg of my trip to a tee! It looks fantastic when paired with slightly bronzed skin. Keep it in mind for the Aus summer ladies!

Does a small tidy up help your mood?
Make you feel a little cleaner/neater?
Sure did for me!

Review: Pantene Pro-V Night Miracle

Image courtesy of Primped.com.au

I’m a conditioner junkie. I use far too much of it in the shower to detangle my often unruly locks, slop on hair masks like the tub is never ending, and enjoy a good leave in spray.

When I realised this bottle of Pantene Pro-V was some form of conditioner, I was stoked. Then I read, ‘Night Miracle Creme Serum’. Pfft, said my skeptical side, what a marketing ploy – as if you need a serum especially for night time! I would be lying if I said I wasn’t also worried about it leaving my hair lank and greasy. And how do I apply it? Wet or dry hair? Pantene, you left me in the dark with the instructions, bud! Oh, the fear of the unknown!

So I winged it, applying to clean dry hair before bed, and awoke to silky hair sans tangles! Joy! My hair is shoulder-length and quite thick, and as claimed, there was no residue. Not even on my sheets. The liquid-gel formula seems to disappear when you apply it to your strands.

I’m not sure how much active ‘repairing’ this serum gets up to, if it all, (mostly due to the * sign after the word repair – actually meaning “smoothens roughened surface”, but I suppose repair is the same thing…) but for only $9.99, it definitely does make your hair silky smooth and more manageable, and has a firm place on my dresser table, aka top prodz in my lyfe aka TPIML.

I received this product as part of the PRIMEPD VIP club, to read other member’s reviews, click here.

Dermalogica Clean Start Bedtime For Breakouts

Every time I apply this prod to my skin before bed, the gel seems to whisper to me, ‘you apply so lovingly, yet where is my write up in your fancy pants blog? Playing favourites now are we?’

To which I reply, ‘No way man! You are a fave, I just…’

Well here you go, Bedtime for Breakouts (RRP $40/60mL) – your long overdue review. (How can you say I don’t love you when I make up a rhyme like that?)

I love the stuff, I do. The ‘stuff’ being an overnight treatment gel for blemishes. Which is handy because usually in the day your skin is busy not only with your regular skin care routine, but then a whole pile of sunscreens and make up too. While you’re sleeping, your skin gets busy regenerating and the like, and that’s where night time products come in.

I apply the almost lemonade-smelling gel to areas of my face that are prone to breakouts, and the gel dries clear which is a great bonus for me, as there’s none of that white tinge a certain brand I used a few years ago used to leave (on me, and everything else).

I enjoy the fact that I can spread it all over an entire area, say forehead for example, instead of trying to only apply a great dollop of cream to one pimple for fear of burning a hole in the surrounding skin. Bedtime For Breakouts has never caused any dryness or flaking on my clear areas – win!

It’s effective enough to keep blemishes at bay, or reduce current sore lumps – but I wouldn’t rely on this gel alone. Clean Start also offers a more targeted, stronger spot treatment, aptly named Hit The Spot ($40) – another fave. I’m a sloppy applicator and use this on general breakout areas too, but haven’t found it too strong for my non-blemished skin, yet it went to town on my blemishes. Powerful without feeling like I’m sucking the life out of my skin, it’s my current #1 spot treatment and I am (sadly) carrying around the tester sachets that came with my (won from Clean Start’s Facebook page) Bedtime For Breakouts, scraping every last drop out.

Points for Dermalogica for bringing out a little sister range of products aimed at (typically younger) skin-types with breakout issues. They’re fun, fresh (love the colourful yet simple packaging and witty names!) and effective, without costing a fortune. There was definitely a hole in the market for this type of range, and ladies, me thinks they filled it!

Bond No. 9 New York

Imagine trying to capture the essence of a city in one fragrance. You would think its impossible, right? Especially if that city was New York; contradictory, complex, large, diverse and amazing.

Yet Bond No. 9 New York have taken on the responsibility  to ‘make scents of New York’, right down to the very neighborhood, beach, or even street.

The fragrances are housed in their trademark 5-point star bottles, with the design ranging from simple and classic to a clash of colours and Andy Warhol illustrations.

The scents are named after iconic streets and boroughs such as; Park Avenue, Brooklyn, Hamptons, Andy Warhol Lexington Avenue, Bryant Park, Central Park, Wall Street, Broadway Nite and so much more! The full listing of all the scents is here.

I was in their Bleecker Street boutique yesterday (I should really try and make it to their flagship, it looks amazing) and it was beautiful, the star-shaped bottles lined each wall floor to ceiling, and the medley of contrasting colours was such a delight to the eye, and the nose! Unfortunately I wasn’t allowed to take any inside pictures.

The exterior of the Bleeker St. boutique

The salesgirl who helped us was incredibly knowledgeable; each time we picked up a bottle she rattled off the base notes and key ingredients, which were often extremely interesting and unusual combinations. Fennel, crème brulée, roasted almonds and sandalwood anyone? It’s always so refreshing to deal with staff who know exactly what they are talking about, rather than getting ‘um’s…’.

Each scent I tried was as amazing as the next. The newest release, Andy Warhol Montauk, was a winner with both Erin and myself, and we received an adorable bon-bon wrapped sample. They were all so complex, intense (but not in an overpowering way) and unique to anything I have smelt before. You’re sure to stand out from the crowd wearing one of these, especially in Australia!

My sample cards and bon-bon take home!

I wish I could have come away with one, (or five) but at around $200 US a bottle (for the 100ml) it was out of my budget. You can get them shipped internationally, although you might want to wait until someone you know is going to the US – it’s $150 US…

It’s a definite must see (and smell) for anyone planning a trip to New York. Maybe break open that piggy bank and count your dollar coins so you can take home your favourite New York neighborhood!

Which one will you be?

Real Body Love.

Erin and I found a Diane Von Furstenberg Sample Sale three days ago, and while we wanted to be one of the girls with the bulging mound of designer clothes weighing more than their own bodies, we restrained ourselves, and the plastic stayed firmly within our wallets.

Today we were back in the hope that some of our finds would be reduced on the last day. We were right, except there was about 1/4 of the original stock left – to be expected. The majority of the remaining stock was US size 6 and above – obviously the supermodel-esque girls we had seen on the first day had cleared out the smaller sizes. I grabbed a few of the items I had seen on the first day and while not in the exact size I was after, I thought I would try them on to check.

We all know a good designer warehouse sale can bring out the animal in even the most ladylike of women, but what I wasn’t expecting was the openness in the communal change room. The nature of the sale lent to the makeshift change rooms, basically a square area with a curtain around it. Packed with women. Women in varying states of undress, some naked except for a few bits of string.

It’s funny how a designer sale can remove inhibitions and make us forget about our body insecurities, even if just for a few minutes. A quick glance around the room revealed beautiful women of all shapes from size 8 to 16; flat bums, bootylicious bums, huge boobs, long boobs, stomachs that had once housed babies and everything in between. Cellulite was out and proud, and nobody attempted to hide their wobbly bits as they raced against the 5-minute changing room time limit.

It was as I looked around, appreciating the varying forms of the female body that I thought; this is where the real body love is. Not in the pages of carefully done ‘real women’ magazine shoots, complete with the most flattering of outfits and lighting, but here in this shabby communal change room, where topless women offered to help zip up their struggling neighbor.

Diane’s iconic wrap-dress and its many spin-offs sit in thousands of women’s wardrobes – its aim to be universally flattering, skimming over lumps, cinching in waists, creating  and celebrating curves.

“I design for the woman who loves being a woman,” said Diane.
Skinny and bigger girls alike.

I Blame The Top Knot.

Ever been in a makeup/hair rut? I sure have. Those who haven’t, please close your browser, fire your personal makeup artist and hairdresser, wait a few weeks, then come back and read on.

It’s not like there is a lack of inspiration. From amazing bold eyes staring up at us from glossy pages, or bouncy curls passing us in the street, there is a myriad of looks taunting us with their creativity and chic.

So what’s the issue then? Well, I for one am guilty of ticking the ‘lack of time’ box on the ‘Reasons Why I Have Worn the Same Hairstyle All Week’ survey. Somehow, when I wake up in the dark at 6am, I don’t feel like whipping out the rollers and red lippy to create a mad 50’s look. Most mornings, this lack of motivation sadly even extends to plugging in my hair straightener.

Can I just say, HALLELUJA for the invention of the top knot, my favourite ‘do – so devilishly easy and sneaky it should be illegal. At least for the purposes of changing it up in busy times; vintage waves have no chance against the powerful pull of an easy top knot. It can be so many things – polished, chic, modern, grungy, messy – but most of all, a black hole of hairdo repetitiveness. It’s not that I don’t want to be mixing it up in the hair/makeup stakes – gosh no, I would love to be whipping out a different style each day!

So seeing as I don’t have kids, am currently on holidays for the next 6 weeks, and don’t have a gym membership, all excuses for lack of creativity are out the window. There is no, “I have to get up early/I’m going to the gym to get sweaty anyways/I’m way too tired.”

It is my goal to try some new hair and makeup looks, and hopefully by documenting it for the world to see, I’ll keep to my commitment, and possibly share a few experiements.

So, does anyone else have these kind of ruts?
Do you blame the top knot?
How do you pull yourself out?
Any favourite looks to get me started?


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