Monday, April 30, 2012

Imperial Leather Foamburst Foaming Shower Gel in Tropical Sunset - review

First off, this looks likes a shaving gel. Second off, this lathers like a shaving gel. And third off, I will be using this as just a shaving gel, because it freaks me out using a shower gel to cleanse my armpits with.

I don't care if the label says it's a shower gel, my brain is convinced it's a shave gel and Lord knows I can't change my mind once I've decided on something. This, people, is why I wake up the Boyfriend up at 3am on a Wednesday so I can make cookie dough, eat half a tablespoon, then go back to bed. All because that's something that I've decided has to be done Right Now.

The scent is listed has coconut and tiare flower, but I can't make out the individual fragrance, rather it's a generic 'tropical flower' scent, that clings to my skin like sexiness clings to Paul Rudd. 

Yeah, like I'd ever pass up an opportunity for a Paul Rudd gif!

This exercise has taught me that I'm a old stickler for new-fangled ways of washing. I find soap to drying, but am so on the shower gels and cream. Sneaky shaving gel pretending to be a "foaming shower gel"? Get off my lawn! And I'm not even going to try with the Lush shower jelly I have sitting in my bathroom cupboard. I opened it, saw that it was a jelly and immediately knew that our love could never be.

Unlike Paul and my love, which will last forever in the boundless gif bank of my mind. Le sigh.

Imperial Leather Foamburst Foaming Shower Gel of Untruths is like a couple of bucks, I guess? I've seen it from around A$5 all the way down to A$2 which is about how much I paid for it. Pretty cheap for shaving gel no?

*Photo taken from brand product site as my can is all gunked up and a little rusty from sitting in the shower.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Australis Lash TLC Mascara in Black Curling - review

It's funny how I'll use a product, like it enough to add to my daily routine and then promptly forgot about reviewing it, even when it's (literally) right in front of my eyes. 

Australis' Lash TLC mascara is one such gem that I use for a basic everyday look, for the days that I want to look more naturally pretty, rather than a Marry, Snog, Avoid reject.

I save this kind of look for church!
Lash TLC comes in two versions - Blackest Black and Black Curling. I have the curling one, so cannot vouch for Blackest Black being in fact the Blackest Black possible. However Black Curling is in fact black and does a neat job of coating and curling my lashes. It's a curved brush with semi-rigid bristles and a wet formula that leaves my lashes glossy. 

It's housed in a distractingly shiny tube, all pink and metallic, and is easy to pick out of the nine mascaras I currently have in rotation (I know, but countless back-up mascaras is the curse of the pale-lashed).

I wear contacts, and Lash TLC has so far been the least irritating formula so far. It doesn't flake and get gritty bits under my contacts (worse feeling ever). While it doesn't do much volumising for me, that's not what I want from a casual day mascara, and I'm very happy with the clean looking and defined lashes I'm left with day after day.

Need proof? I realised I had to cover this mascara after seeing how often it popped up in my Instagram Face of the Day portraits.

Australis says the formula includes vitamins E and B5 and a silk powder enriched with amino acids and trace elements to strengthen and protect. Does this matter to me? Nope! I'm not a scientist and I haven't had increased lash fall or anything, so I'm not really fussed about these types of claims. I've never tried a mascara and thought "No, this definitely needs more silk powder. ALL THE SILK POWDER!!". You might enjoy the reassurance of added vitamins, mineral and stem cells (that last one is less than true), but it doesn't make an impression on me.

Australis Lash TLC retails for A$14.95.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Antipodes Apostle Skin-Brightening and Tone-Correcting Serum - review

I've had this serum kicking around my bathroom since March. It's not because I didn't want to write about it as soon as I got my paws on it, but because it's a treatment serum. In my experience as someone who regularly rubs stuff on her face, active treatment serums like this one need to be given at least a few weeks trial before you see results and I'm hesitant to judge something without giving it a real go.

Antipodes claims right on the box, that Apostle Skin-Brightening and Tone-Correcting Serum will brighten complexion in five days. "Mmm-hmm" I thought to myself, "Whatevs, I'll believe the results when I damn well see them myself."

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Kevin Murphy Color Bug in Grape - review and ombre hair swatch

So I had like half an hour spare before I had to leave for work the other day and was faced with a difficult decision - eat breakfast or give myself purple ombre, My Little Pony hair. Obviously I went for a sensible breakfast of bran with almond milk and fresh carrot and kale juice.

Lol jokes, I used a Kevin Murphy Color Bug for some sweet-ass purple hair. Then ate left-over Easter eggs at my desk for breakfast. Win-win, mais non?

Unlike my previous go at ombre hair, this isn't a dye that lasts weeks. Rather, Kevin Murphy has created these nifty little pans of hair eyeshadow. Similar to eyeshadow, you apply it over primed hair and huzzah! - instant hair colour minus that whole commitment thing.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Maybelline Baby Lips - review

Don't look at me like that. I know everybody with a Blogger account has covered these sweet little thangs, and that they are loved like a Paul Rudd shaped body pillow (nightly and in the morning too)
Obviously I'm not revealing anything groundbreaking here, but darn I like these little tubes of hydration.

I impulse-bought two, in Protecting Berry (in a limited edition tube) and Smoothing Cherry last week and they now have happy homes in my purse. Berry smells like a creamy berry yogurt and Cherry reminds me of Panadol Liquid Painkiller for Children, the gluggy pink one. I like both scents and they dissipate quickly.

For some reason I thought these would be tinted, despite seeing every single review and swatch that suggested the opposite, but honestly that ain't no thang. My lips are kept smooth, soft and buttery feeling, and protected by the SPF20+. Not really like baby lips, which I can only assume are snotty, drooling and dripping with remnants of breast milk (try eating after picturing that), but a better version of my own lips, which is pretty darn swell.

Maybelline Baby Lips retail for $3.95, a totally reasonable price for a balm. Bravo, Maybelline.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Australis Double Decker Eyeshadow Duo in Supernova Casanova

I've had this little pot stashed away for the last few months, forgotten in the aftermath of a Priceline 45 minute bender (lipstick was everywhere, man, everywhere! You weren't there! So...many...swatches. Never forget, Priceline rampage of '12), and I never got around to trying it out.

Cut to today and I spy it in my underwear drawer (Why? Honestly at this point your guess is better than mine.) and decided to give it a whirl.

Australis is one of my favourite lower-priced brands, and their Double Decker eyeshadow duo fits nicely into the sentiment, with two shadows (one cream, one powder) presented in a glossy black tub for under ten bucks. Flip the lid for the cream and twist the top off for the loose powder that if you're me, you will promptly spill on your lap and jammy crumpets. Le sigh.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Mukti Macadamia and Honey Lip Balm - review

LIVE, from Michaela's bed, it's Lather Rinse Repeat!
Yup, I'm snuggled up in bed, pecking away at this post on the boyfriend's iPad. I could go downstairs and get my laptop, but that's like something Ironmen or elite athletes or people who aren't lazy would do. I've already used up my allotted 'walk up and down the stairs' for today when I grabbed a glass of water. Wouldn't want to strain something.

Anyhoo, as I lay in bed, looking at my overloaded bedside table, I realised I'd never covered a real workhorse product of mine, something I use every single day. Not once have I paid much thought to it, said thank you for making my lips all soft and smoochable or bought it flowers and told it that it looks pretty. I would make a terrible boyfriend!

Friday, April 13, 2012

NOTD - Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Nomad

Illamasqua Nomad

I've been taking this jade baby for a ride for the last week. It's an unusual creamy mint, unusual not that it's a strange colour because I see a lot of brands trotting out similar shades, but because it's so lovely and opaque after a coat and perfect after two. Love that. Drying time is average, and I sped it up with some drying drops.

Below is two coats, plus normal base and top coats.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

MeMeMe Blush Me! in Pink - review and swatch

I was so excited to get the Blush Me! Blush in Pink from MeMeMe in a very generous goody bag at last weekend's Sydney Beauty Blogger meet-up. I've flicked through the MeMeMe website a few times and had been putting off a purchase until I at least made a dent in my current rotation of product. I'm also sometimes a bit leery of brands I haven't seen in person, which is silly considering my Buy ALL The Online Things mantra.

First things first, this box looks super similar to the Benefit line of boxed blushes. It's a wee bit chunkier, but has the same basic idea of a cardboard box fitted out with a blush pan and squat little blush, plus a mirror in the lid. No issues with that, it's a great package that stacks well on my vanity while keeping contents safe. However I know some Benebabes take it a little too personal when their beloved brand is emulated. Calm down, you guys, cardboard boxes are a pretty common kind of packaging. Also I just wrote 'carbboard' there. Could someone bring me a toasted panini please?

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in Creamsicle - review, swatch and rant

I wasn't actually going to review this one. Something about the hype and the ridiculous up-pricing for the Australian market, that these are basically drug store brand tinted lip balms going for over A$20 really pisses me off. So much, that when I was sent a Lip Butter in Creamsicle in a Aus-US swap, despite originally requesting to be sent it, I gave it a dose of Bitchface and dropped it into my bottomless box of products.

After seeing everyone everywhere swatch and love their Lip Butters, I caved and gave it a go. I'll admit that I was a wee bit harsh to completely disregard them, but like any wildly hyped product, it has a lot to live up to.

Creamsicle is a decent enough shade, a very soft peach that translates as a nude pink on my lips. Like you'd guess, it's quite moisturising, without being sticky or thick. My main issue is how often you'd have to reapply to keep a consistent colour. My lips just eat this sucker up within ten minutes, and I intend to only use Creamsicle as a same-tone balm under my favourite nude-pink shade, Face of Australia's Lip Quench in Lychee Crush, a lippy that lasts considerably longer. I think I would like to try a darker colour, perhaps one that stains my pout better, before I come to a final conclusion on the Lip Butters.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Featherlocks Hair Extensions - review

You guys know I'm down with doing stuff to my hair, from pink balayage  to an ill-advised fringe (you will NEVER see photos of that one), so I was more than happy to accept when the folks at Featherlocks by Condition Culture asked me to try their feather extensions, made from rooster feathers. I knew about them mostly from a few celebrities whose music I most definitely do not sing along to while vacuuming like Selena Gomez, Hilary Duff and Miley Cyrus wearing them, but hadn't seen them on in person. 

I chose the bright blue and teal shades in hopes of emulating my spirit animal, the peacock (vain, loud and flightless? So me.), and stylist and Featherlocks brand ambassador, Kim Rattenbury got to work. The dude has gorgeous hair by the way. Like, inducing jealousy from a girl who is most definitely not me kinda curls.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Ralph Lauren Big Pony 3 - review

Mimosa seems to be having a mini-moment (the flower, not the yummy cocktail). Known as wattle to us Aussies, it's a distinctive dry and powdery flower that has recently popped up in Versace's Yellow Diamond, Annick Goutal's limited edition Le Mimosa and before them, Yves Saint Laurent's Cinema (discontinued, and one I'm hoping to pick it up on the cheap).

The latest scent to get its wattle on is Big Pony 3, from Ralph Lauren's Big Pony collection for women. Out of the four scents in the collection, this will be the only one I intend to cover, despite sniffing all three. Honestly, I couldn't tell the difference between 1, 2 and 4, all being overly sweet and sickly berry-watermelon-fruit-punch-mixed floral based. Not for me at all and I think even 14 year old Michaela would have had preferred the eternal tween favourite Ralph to any of these. 14 year old Michaela was convinced she would marry Orlando Bloom and thought lipstick was for old people, so it's not like she even had very good taste, so make of that what you will.

What makes 3 different? While it's not innovative or particularly interesting, it makes use of a quintessentially Australian flower, and I like that. Sadly, it's given a heavy dose of the fruit du jour pear, which inches it closer to its bowl of punch brethren. There's a base of a light indistinct citrus and pale watery notes throughout, and another floral in the dry down, maybe freesia, although it isn't listed in the official notes (Ralph Lauren only gives them as mimosa and pear).

I really don't like fruity florals, especially sweet ones like this, but the top notes of mimosa really are quite nice. As Versace's Yellow Diamond mirrors the pear and mimosa notes, I'm hoping it will do mimosa justice, especially at its lower price point.

The Big Pony scents by Ralph Lauren each retail for A$90 for 50mL and A$120 for 100mL.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Ere Perez Rich Olive Oil Lipsticks and Real Rosehip Lipbar - review and swatches

Ere Perez lipstick packaging

I love a good beauty product with a plus. Pluses claim to add moisture, or even skin tone or provide leprechaun protection you can trust. The two Ere Perez lip products I'm covering here each have their own plus. One contains 'Rich Olive Oil', the other 'Real Rosehip', and both claim moisturising and smoothing properties. 

Ere Perez lipstick lid
Ere Perez lipsticks
From left, Rich Olive Oil Lipsticks in Dance and Surprise, Real Rosehip Lipbar in Life

Ere Perez lipstick swatches
From top: Life, Surprise, Dance.