Thursday, November 29, 2012

Illamasqua and blackface - a study in poor customer relations

*EDIT* Trigger warning for racism, swearing, angry gifs. So, so many angry gifs.

Today's post derails from my normal review-based content, but it is something I feel very strongly about. Skip this if you want, but honestly, I would much more prefer you read ahead for my thoughts on a recent incredible cock-up by a beauty brand. To preface - this is not me acting as a mouthpiece for the black community. I'm literally the whitest person ever, and it would be not on for someone of such white privilege to hijack other personal experiences and diminish their meaning. That is not my place. This is the retelling of a beauty brand royally fucking up, and their continued offending of customers.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Nair Spa Clay Shower Power Hair Removal Cream - review

Welcome to Lather Rinse Repeat's series of summer themed posts! Every post that features the above banner will be serving up a review of a useful product or service for you to take advantage of in the warmer months.

So I've told you about the awkwardness that ensured when I waxed my legs, and have written about my inability to shave without ending up leaking blood everywhere. Looks like hair removal cream is the logical next option for de-hairing my pins.

Nair makes a pretty large range of hair removal creams and wax products, and their Spa Clay Shower Power Hair Removal Cream is the newest to be launched. It's loaded with ingredients like mineral clay and mango butter which are meant to leave smoother skin behind after use.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Ella Baché Summer Skin Day - Thursday 22nd November

Welcome to Lather Rinse Repeat's series of summer themed posts! Every post that features the above banner will be serving up a review of a useful product or service for you to take advantage of in the warmer months.

Ever wanted to work out exactly what's going on with your skin? Whether you've got overactive oil glands or dry patches and their causes? Or is your face freaking out due to seasonal changes and you need to refresh to a lighter skincare solution for summer? Rather than self-diagnosing like I previously had ("I have a pimple therefore my skin is the oiliest ever and I'll now burn it to the ground with salicylic acid. Yes, burn them all!"), pop along to your local Ella Baché salon for their Summer Skin Day this Thursday 22nd of November.  Totes free, with no appointment needed, roll up (no need to remove your make-up) and have your face pored over with Ella Baché's TrUView skin diagnostic tool. Yes, there's far too much capitalising in that name for my liking too. /grammar nerd.

I went to the World Square salon (Sydney) to see Shae and her team for my diagnosis. Shae (instantly awesome because she had pink eyebrows) had me fill out a form to determine and factors that could be affecting my skin's condition. She then literally inspected me under a magnifing glass - the TrUView device magnifies and allows the therapist see into your upper dermis. 

I stole this pic from the EB website, but it's pretty much what happened. Maybe more pink eyebrows.

My diagnosis? Basically the bestest skin ever with teeny tiny pores and smooth skin - 

- but I did have some dehydrated cheeks and related irritation.

Luckily Shae broke that to me gently and walked me through the products that I can use to combat my (minimal) skin concerns. My favourite? The Hydra Velvety Soft Cream, a no-nonsense dose of moisture to layer over my serum at night.

To have your skin sussed out with TrUView, shimmy over to your nearest Ella Baché salon this Thursday November 22nd. Say I sent you. Then wink real slowly. Reeeeeeeal slowly. They'll know exactly what you mean. Pinky promise.

ALSO IMPORTANT! Ella Baché World Square has some super honest staff. I left my phone there and they blog-stalked me and emailed me to pick it up. Honestly! They didn't even try to take my super sweet cat and yarn phone case, which honestly is incredible because that's a killer phone case.

You can find your closest salon here.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Qsilica Paw Paw Rescue Ointment - review

ERMAHGERD YOU GUISE! Apologies for a drought in posts the last few days, work was cray-cray, I was on and off planes, and with zero available daylight hours to take product photos. Like, sometimes having a job is hard!

Anyhoo, here's one product I've had stashed in my purse the last week, Qsilica Paw Paw Rescue Ointment. It's a bit different when compared to other paw paw ointments, in that the fermented fruit is combined with colloidal silica. According to Wikipedia "colloidal silicas are suspensions of fine amorphous, nonporous, and typically spherical silica particles in a liquid phase." Okay then! Other ingredients include sweet almond oil (first ingredient listed and the base of the ointment), sunflower seed oil, white beeswax, castor oil, jojoba oil, macadamia seed oil, shea butter, grapefruit seed extract, oil oil, calendula and glycerin. That's a whole heaping serve of oils! It's also petrochemical free to better aid moisture absorption. 

The Rescue Ointment is recommended for use in conditioning dry skin and moisturising dry lips, but I've been using it on my raggedy-arse cuticles too.

For me the main differences between Qsilica and something like Lucas Paw Paw is the scent and the texture. It's a thinner formula, which did separate in the tube occasionally and leaves more of a gloss on the lips. The scent is a lot more medicinal and maybe slightly vinegary, which is a plus for me because I think paw paw balms generally smell like cat vomit anyway. At any rate, the scent subsides after application.

You only need a teeny bit as it's so thin and light, and if used exclusively on my lips, the 25ml tube would last me forever. It does a decent job moisturising, especially in a plane cabin, where I manage to avoid the normal chapped lips I get after napping on a plane.

I think if you normally use a paw paw ointment on your lips, you'd easily enjoy this version too, especially for day time use or over a lip colour.

Qsilica Paw Paw Rescue Ointment retails for A$8.95.

Disclaimer: This products were sent to me by Planet Health. They have in no way influenced my review and opinions are my own. It is also my opinion that cat vomit is the second worse smell ever, after orange blossom. See my Disclaimer for more sexy details.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Veet EasyWax Electrical Roll-On Kit - review

Welcome to Lather Rinse Repeat's series of summer themed posts! Every post that features the above banner will be serving up a review of a useful product for you to take advantage of in the warmer months.

I'm pretty awful at hair removal. I can barely shave my legs without having a cascade of blood pour from behind my knee (that spot always gets me!) and once had an....incident with some hair removal cream and my ladyparts. Oh, and if you follow me on Twitter, you may have seen me live tweet me using wax strips on my underarms. It did not end well. At all.

Anyway, after that really comforting introduction, let's talk waxing. Yes, the girl who has failed miserably at every hair removal technique ever wants to delve into ripping the hair off. Try and suspend your disbelief, and let's hope for no bloodshed.

Okay, minimal blood. A low goal is a good goal.

I was sent the Veet EasyWax Electrical Roll-On Kit to trial, and after receiving it, I ended up leaving the box untouched in the corner of my apartment for a few weeks. This is because I am a giant sook actually grow leg hair pretty sparsely, and it takes a while to get enough hair to make it worth waxing.

While the box says it takes about 20 minutes to heat up the wax, I found through trial and error that just under an hour was the optimal amount of time to achieve evenly flowing wax.

It rolls out from the applicator in thin layer of pink wax, covering a decent width with product, and the cloth strip happily stuck to it. Now for the hard part!

The first few attempts were pretty hopeless. I wasn't holding my skin taut enough or pulling the strip off fast enough. Everytime I went to tug it off, I winced a little and pulled back for going at it hard. Such a sook!

Eventually, I sucked it up and got quite successful at pulling them of in one smooth motion, although not all of the hair was being picked and and just left indents in the wax. I found that the success rate was far higher when I did let the wax heat up for much longer than instructed.

Post-wax battlefields

The package says that there is enough wax for four uses, however I used two and a half cloth strips per leg out of the 12 cloth strips included. Curse these long, long legs! The wax removal wipes are very effective, but the four included aren't enough for four uses, and I ended up using olive oil to remove excess wax. It ain't water-soluble, so oil removal is a must!

Second opinion time! I gave one of the extra packs I had to a hairier friend and long-time waxer who refuses to be named because she apparently likes to kept some things sacred. She found the EasyWax kit super easy to use compared to her usual pots of wax and that the strips were easier to reuse, due to how thin the layers of wax were. She also performed a successful wax on the patches I'd missed, showing that it really is all in the technique.

My takeaway from this experience? The Veet EasyWax Electrical Roll-on Kit is perfect for those who have some experience with waxing and have even a slight pain threshold. It's a lot tidier and less fiddly than traditional pot waxing and I found it gentler than the wax strip versions. I'm going to go back to shaving and will leave all my waxing to the professionals/bored friends to do because I can't be trusted to woman up and do it myself!

Veet EasyWax Electrical Roll-On Kit retails for A$39.99

What say you? Are you an at-home waxer? Any tips for my fellow wussy waxers?

Disclaimer: These products were sent to me by Veet and beautyheaven. They have in no way influenced my review and opinions are my own. It is also my opinion that guys should never wax, because their chest stubble rubs off my fake tan. See my Disclaimer for more sexy details.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

A'Kin Rose & Geranium Pure Creamy Cleanser & Toner in One - review

The lovely Sabine from Echolife sent me A'kin's Rose & Geranium Pure Creamy Cleanser & Toner in One (phew, long name!) for my birthday, after hearing that I was running low on facial cleanser. Of course, for a beauty blogger, "running low on facial cleanser" actually translates to "I have one and a half tubes of cleanser left, but am already starting to panic that I need MOAR PRODUCTS!". Ahem. So I only got around to using this one a few weeks ago.

Incidentally, this in-between seasons Spring Sydney has been having (hello rain, wind and the occasional heat-blast of a day when I'm wearing the thickest fleece tights ever) is a good time to introduce a soothing, creamy cleanser. My skin isn't quite sure what's happening, and doing that charming thing where dry patches appear on my cheeks one day, with little bumpy not-quite-but-could-soon-be-pimples joining the party the next. Fun times!

I was previously using a cleanser from Environ, and just replaced it with this once I hit tube. No changes to other skincare components, as is my way when trying a new skincare product for the first time.

The cardboard box packaging is simple and functional

It's a pretty big tube at 225ml, and after using the first few times, I realised it was going to last me absolutely ages due to the small amount of product needed.

The scent is very floral - not fresh wet roses, but more like those giant old tea roses with something herbal mixed in. It isn't a really strong scent, but definitely noticeable. I really liked it, so it wasn't an issue for me at all, and I appreciate that the scent is derived from flower oil with their own benefits for the skin. None of that chemically lab-created fragrance here!

This is way too much product. I only need to use half of this for my entire face.

It's a super rich cream formula, and full of moisturing oils like sesame, olive, macadamia, jojoba and shea butter. Although it's so thick, it spreads really well across damp skin and you only need a smidgen to do the job.

The packaging says it can rinsed or wiped off with a cloth after application on a wet face. I'll admit that I only ever use rinse off formulas myself, as cotton-balling or wiping off a facial cleanser just squicks me out massively. Like, how can you know your face is really clean and not all dirt-festering if you don't use water? That's just science, man. Aqua-science. 

So after rising my face (like God damn well intended us to do), my skin felt pleasantly clear. No too-tightness or squeaky clean skin, just soft and comfortable which I found helped calm down my dry cheeks considerably. There is a slight amount of residue left behind, something that you may appreciate was a protective barrier, especially for more mature skin, or if like me, your skin is super immature, it's easily refreshed with toner before layering your serums and moisturiser. It is a two in one product, and when I've used this in the morning, I'm quite happy to go without toning (that's an extra 35 seconds in bed!). However, I'm a slave to routine, and you can prise my night toner out of my cold, dead, well-moisturised hands.


A'kin's Rose & Geranium Pure Creamy Cleanser & Toner in Oneretails for A$29.95 from Echolife, and it's worth noting they have free shipping too.

Disclaimer: These products were sent to me by Echolife. They have in no way influenced my review and opinions are my own. It is also my opinion that face rinsing is legion. The links in the post are not affiliate links, and I do not profit from you using them. See my Disclaimer for more sexy details.