[Review] Laneige Lip Glowy Balm – how does it compare to the iconic lip sleeping mask?

When Laneige released these lip balms (within the last year or so), I was curious to see how they would compare with their cult favourite lip sleeping mask. In my opinion this was the product which got a lot of hype and made Laneige a household name worldwide. Launching their line in Sephora also helped. I really like the sleeping mask, everything about it, except for the pot packaging. So when I saw these balms released in tube form, I hoped that they would be just as good as they are convenient.

I picked up 3 of the 4 shades, #Grapefruit, #Pear and #Peach. I couldn’t get a hold of #Berry at the time.

Claims

from laneige.com

The perfect daytime partner in crime to the cult-favorite Lip Sleeping Mask, Glowy Lip Balm is pocket sized for easy, on-the-go application. The formula contains murumuru and shea butters that provide powerful hydration and lock in moisture longer.

Price

$15.95 AUD, 10g, from letsfaceit.net.au

Ingredients

See laneige.com for the ingredients for all 4 flavours. Included ingredients from their website for Peach.

Peach: HYDROGENATED POLYISOBUTENE, PHYTOSTERYL/ISOSTEARYL/CETYL/ STEARYL/BEHENYL DIMER DILINOLEATE, HYDROGENATED POLY(C6-14 OLEFIN), DIISOSTEARYL MALATE, POLYBUTENE, PHYTOSTERYL ISOSTEARYL DIMER DILINOLEATE, MICROCRYSTALLINE WAX /CERA MICROCRISTALLINA / CIRE MICROCRISTALLINE, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) BUTTER, SUCROSE TETRASTEARATE TRIACETATE, SYNTHETIC WAX, ETHYLENE/ PROPYLENE/STYRENE COPOLYMER, MICA, EUPHORBIA CERIFERA (CANDELILLA) WAX / CANDELILLA CERA HYDROCARBONS / CIRE DE CANDELILLA, ASTROCARYUM MURUMURU SEEDBUTTER, BUTYLENE/ ETHYLENE/STYRENE COPOLYMER, CANDELILLA WAX ESTERS, FRAGRANCE / PARFUM, DEHYDROACETIC ACID, DIMETHICONE, POLYGLYCERYL-2 TRIISOSTEARATE, METHICONE, COPERNICIA CERIFERA (CARNAUBA) WAX / COPERNICIA CERIFERA CERA / CIRE DE CARNAUBA, TITANIUM DIOXIDE (CI 77891), YELLOW 6 LAKE (CI 15985), POLYGLYCERYL-2 DIISOSTEARATE, RED 6 (CI 15850), PRUNUS PERSICA (PEACH) KERNEL OIL, BHT 

Without analysing all the ingredients in each one, which I won’t be doing, the hero ingredients do differ between the lip sleeping mask and the glowy lip balms.

From laneige.com:

Lip Glow Balm

Key Ingredient: Murumuru Butter, Shea Butter

Lip Sleeping Mask

Key Ingredient: Berry Mix Complex™

Comparison summary

Packaging

The packaging is a small and slim plastic squeezy tube, pretty common to other lip balms on the market. It’s easy to squeeze out your desired amount and you can use the applicator to also spread the balm on your lips. Hands free lip application is the most sanitary option, especially in these dark times, so I’m all for simple tubes because they do the job efficiently.

Laneige Lip Glowy Balms – Peach

One of my pet peeves for lip products is having to use my fingers for application. I know that Laneige does provide this small spatula thing (which I already lost/threw away on day one) with the lip sleeping mask, but even if I did use that I would still need to keep it sanitised which requires unnecessary effort in my opinion.

Cost

The lip glowy balm only has 10g of product where the lip sleeping mask has 20g. Sephora sells the lip sleeping mask for $28 and the glowy balm for $23. So for an extra $5 you can get double the product of the lip glowy balm with the lip sleeping mask. I’ve used my jar for months (not consistently because of the packaging) and I haven’t made much a dent yet so I can vouch that it’s far better value. It will probably expire before I use it up. The cost of convenience however, is priceless. If I can get the glowy balms on sale (which I did), the difference isn’t that bad.

This is all in AUD by the way and cost varies depending on where you shop. This is more common for k-beauty since it’s sold through many different retailers. I would definitely recommend the Let’s face it online store (I’m not affiliated) if you are in Australia, their prices are competitive and shipping was super quick.

Performance

True to its claims, it does provide a lot of hydration and moisture to my lips, which are pretty dry but not cracked or anything. It makes my lips look very juicy with high shine, which I don’t mind since I’ve only been wearing it at home. It gives the same effect of the lip sleeping mask, glossy, non sticky lips.

In terms of its lasting power, I would say that it’s just as effective as the lip sleeping mask. You will need to reapply it after eating (depending on how heavy your meal was) but it does last if you’re just drinking and going about your day. I have applied it before bed as well and my lips have felt soft in the morning. The same result as using the lip sleeping mask. It’s marketed as use for daytime, but it also kept my lips moisturised throughout the night too. Either might not be enough if you have extremely dry or cracked lips, you might need to re apply during the night.

Shades

The tint is barely noticeable too so the difference colour wise across the different flavours is very minimal especially once on the lips. I would say they are pretty much transparent. Each flavour has its own scent of course, which is most detectable when freshly applied and isn’t offensive whatsoever. It doesn’t smell artificial which I appreciate. I’ve only used the Berry flavour of the lip sleeping mask so I don’t know if the other flavours have a stronger scent but the Berry one has a subtle yummy scent, as do these glowy balms. My favourite of the bunch being Peach. Grapefruit is a tad bitter which I don’t like as much but it’s also pretty subtle.

Laneige Lip Glowy Balm – Swatched from top to bottom: Pear, Peach and Grapefruit

Final thoughts

Rating: 5 out of 5 (Love this, will always need it in my beauty arsenal!)

I really like these Lip Glowy Balms from Laneige. I enjoy its fuss free packaging and don’t mind paying a bit extra for this convenience. I would actually get use out of them for this reason which is worth it. I would say it’s incredibly similar to the lip sleeping mask in terms of how it feels and performs on my lips. Would definitely prefer these over the cult classic lip sleeping mask. If you don’t mind using a spatula or fingers, the latter is better value.

Have you tried these out yet? If you already own the lip sleeping mask, how do you think it compares? Would love to hear your thoughts.

[Review] Quick roundup of luxury lip and cheek tints – YSL, Edward Bess and Giorgio Armani

[Review] MISSHA – Velvet Like Color Stick (Line Friends Edition) – Retro Movie, Key Light and Sepia Filter

Line Friends are a group of cute cartoon characters made popular from an asian messaging app. They are commonly found on merchandise, stickers and Missha have regularly used some of the characters on their beauty products.

My favourite character is Brown who is a salty looking bear who wears a constant frown. He has a sister named Choco and it is she who is used on the packaging of the Velvet Like Color Sticks. She’s just as cute and I’m not afraid to admit that I bought them mostly for the adorable packaging. I bought a blush (#Retro Movie), contour (#Sepia Filter) and a highlighter (#Key Light) so if you’d like to hear more about them please keep on reading 🙂

Product Description

from yesstyle.com

Creamy blush stick glides on effortlessly, leaving a high color payoff and velvety finish. Blended with mango seed and avocado butters to nourish skin. Cap is furnished with a three-dimensional figurine of Brown’s younger sister Choco.

Cost

$11.49 AUD from yesstyle.com *. Available in 5 shades. Prices fluctuate constantly on Yesstyle so keep an eye out for their sales.

Packaging

The color sticks are packaged in a sturdy plastic tube with its shade covering the whole container. The cutest part is that Choco is on the lid of each one. As well as being 3D, she is made of rubber and has a soft matte feel. It feels more expensive that is is and well made, very similar to Nudestix’s cheek stick packaging. Some of Nudestix products are made in Korea which is very interesting and since I have a fair bit of their collection, a review is coming very soon!

MISSHA - Velvet Like Color Stick (Line Friends Edition) - Retro Movie, Key Light and Sepia Filter
MISSHA – Velvet Like Color Stick (Line Friends Edition) – Retro Movie, Key Light and Sepia Filter

How to apply

I have used this product only on my cheeks, forehead and cheekbones but I’m sure like any multi use stick, you can also use it on your eyes and lips.

I usually swipe the product directly onto my face and blend with a small duo fibre brush. The Real Techniques Stippling brush is an excellent one but you can use any brush that can blend cream products. Fingers work too and I especially like using fingers to apply the highlighter.

For the contour stick (Sepia Filter)

I swipe it in the areas I normally bronze/contour which are the sides of my forehead, under my cheekbones and under my chin. I use the brush to blend it all in and it’s effortless.

For the blush stick (Retro Movie)

I dab the blush onto the apples of cheeks a couple of times and use the brush to blend it across my cheek. I’ve used my fingers to blend too but I prefer using a brush because it stretches the product a little further and is a breeze to blend in.

For the highlighter (Key Light)

I tap my index finger on top of the highlight and dab it onto my cheekbones. I don’t use a brush because I want a subtle sheen and doing it this way is perfect because you only need a small amount.

Performance

Just like the name implies, all three sticks dry down to a velvet finish which means that they are not sticky or need to be set down with powder. This helps with longevity and they last all day (9hrs) on me which is impressive. I do have combo skin (dry cheeks and kinda oily t-zone) so please keep that in mind. Pretty sure that they will last very well once powdered too if you have oily skin.

I didn’t expect much pigment since k-beauty isn’t well known for that but I was proven wrong. There is definitely strong colour payoff (as shown in the swatches) with all three of these sticks and layering them works well too.

MISSHA - Velvet Like Color Stick (Line Friends Edition) 
Heavy and untidy swatches (sorry!) - Left to right: Key Light, Retro Movie and Sepia Filter.
MISSHA – Velvet Like Color Stick (Line Friends Edition)
Heavy and untidy swatches (sorry!) – Left to right: Key Light, Retro Movie and Sepia Filter.

Consistency

The texture is creamy and smooth but not so emollient that it will slip and slide around your face. They glide on easily making it easy to apply directly to the face. It has never lifted my base products which is a huge plus.

Scent

It doesn’t really have a scent but if you really sniff it you can smell the mango seed butter which is quite nice. This definitely doesn’t translate once on the face.

MISSHA - Velvet Like Color Stick (Line Friends Edition)
MISSHA – Velvet Like Color Stick (Line Friends Edition)

Final thoughts

Rating: 4/5 (really liked it!)

As you can already tell by the rating, I really like these products. As well as having cute packaging the products themselves are decent. I didn’t give it 5 stars because if you blend them too much, they can blend away, in particular the blush. This can be remedied by layering more but it means you need to use more product. The contour has a nice tone to it but isn’t warm enough to use as a true bronzer so sometimes I need to apply a powder bronzer on top in order to get the bronzed effect. The highlighter is my favourite out of the three. It looks very light/white in the swatch but once blended it is so beautiful! It provides a glossy sheen which is my favourite type of effect. The shimmer isn’t noticeable once applied and little does go a long way with it. It rivals a lot of high-end highlighters that I own.

If you are looking for affordable cream cheek products I would highly recommend this line. They perform very similarly to Nudestix cheek products and have great lasting power. Or even if you just love Line Friends and cute packaging, you won’t be disappointed with these. Let me know if you’ve tried them or if you have any other Line Friends beauty recommendations.

Please note: links in this post marked with an * are affiliate links. They provide me with a small commission, if you should choose to use them for a purchase, without any extra cost to you 🙂

[Review] Innisfree – Smart Drawing Blusher

I would consider myself a blush fanatic. Ok a blush and foundation fanatic. These are the two constants in my makeup routine and definite must haves for me. Since I’m currently riding the cream blush train and had been curious about Glossier’s Cloud Paints, I picked this blusher up from eBay. It is sold in 5 colours and I picked it up in shade #04 Dried Rose.

Claims

from yesstyle.com

Cream blush gives cheeks a vivid dash of color while hydrating skin
Lightly adheres to skin for vivid and rosy cheeks with a non-sticky satin finish
User-friendly brush applicator allows for foolproof and precise application

Price

$12.23 AUD from eBay (roseroseshop)*

Packaging

The packaging looks like a paint tube. I like its aesthetics and it reminds me of the packaging of the Glossier Cloud Paints. The colour on the outside represents the shade and the combination of coral and white feels similar to the cloud paint in Dusk.

The brush tip, although it can get unruly after squeezing the product out, makes applying easy. You’ll still need to use fingers or a brush to blend it into the skin.

Innisfree - Smart Drawing Blusher - #04 Dried Rose - Brush tip
Innisfree – Smart Drawing Blusher – #04 Dried Rose – Brush tip can get a bit messy

Performance

This product once squeezed and applied to the cheeks, is easy to blend with a brush or fingers. It’s consistency is thick enough so it stays put after it is painted on. The issue I have with it is that it tends to blend away so I need a couple of layers for it to show up on my skin tone (NC30). Because it’s so subtle on me, it’s hard to judge it’s longevity because it doesn’t look like much in the first place.

Innisfree - Smart Drawing Blusher - #04 Dried Rose 
Freshly swatched photo. Vibrancy fades once blended and has dried down.
Innisfree – Smart Drawing Blusher – #04 Dried Rose
Freshly swatched photo. Vibrancy fades once blended and has dried down.

The good news is, that even with the amount that I have to use, the finish isn’t sticky or tacky. I would agree with the claims of it drying down to a satin finish. This product also has an SPF 26 PA ++ which is quite rare for a blush. Since Koreans are generally very serious about sun protection (and we all should be), I’m not too surprised by this.

Final thoughts

I haven’t tried any of the Cloud Paints because we can’t get Glossier here in Australia but judging from reviews, they are quite pigmented and a little goes a long way. This Smart Drawing Blusher is the opposite, subtle and I need a lot for it to even show up.

This blusher does have the potential to be a nice product. I do like its formula and brush tip, but I think I’m too dark to be able to reap its benefits. When I wear blush, I actually want some colour to show, so this disappointed on that front.

If you have a fair to light skin tone, this might work for you. But if you’re any darker than that, I would give this a miss. There’s a red shade in #05 Shy Camellia Flower that could be more vibrant but I won’t be getting it.

Still lusting over the Cloud Paints so if you know of any dupes, please let me know!

Please note: links in this post marked with an * are affiliate links. They provide me with a small commission, if you should choose to use them for a purchase, without any extra cost to you 🙂

Makeup favourites of 2018

2018 involved a swift expansion of my makeup collection because I went a bit bonkers with experimentation. I grew to love playing with and wearing eyeshadow and discovered a bunch of awesome products from different asian and western brands.

It was hard to pick one product from each category but I decided to pick them on the basis of what I used the most in 2018 and what I would use if I was in a rush that didn’t require much time and thought.

Foundation

I had to break this down into two sub categories since I enjoy using both cushion and normal liquid foundations and have tested many last year.

Cushion Foundation: COSRX Clear Fit Blemish Cushion 

COSRX Clear Fit Blemish Cushion - SPF47 PA++
COSRX Clear Fit Blemish Cushion – SPF47 PA++, Mochi like cushion.

This cushion provides amazing coverage (med-high) and I love the mochi cushion. It allows the puff to pick up an even amount of the foundation, resulting in using less. It doesn’t cake and shade #27 is pretty perfect for me. It contains centella asiatica, tea tree oil, adenosine and madecassoside so it’s a better option for times when I am battling breakouts.

Reviewed here

Purchased from yesstyle.com*

Liquid Foundation: MAC Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof

Pictured right – MAC Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation

I haven’t reviewed this on my blog yet but it was the foundation my MUA used on my wedding day. That was almost two years ago and I have loved in since. It provides buildable full coverage that you can sheer out if you prefer. I apply it with a kabuki brush for fuller coverage and I sometimes go over it with a clean damp beauty blender, just to mesh it all in. It’s matte but not a flat matte. It is definitely waterproof, I sweat heaps in summer and it has lasted. I’m in the shade #NC35.

Purchased from MAC.

Concealer

The Saem – Cover Perfection Tip Concealer SPF28 PA++

The Saem - Cover Perfection Tip Concealer
The Saem – Cover Perfection Tip Concealer

This was an easy choice, it provides the best full coverage, is cheap and it has SPF. It also comes in a few shades which is great for a korean brand.

Reviewed here

Purchased from yesstyle.com*.

Setting Powder

It Cosmetics – Bye Bye Pores Poreless Finish Airbrush Powder

It Cosmetics – Bye Bye Pores Poreless Finish Airbrush Powder

This loose powder, although it’s messy to use, really does make me look poreless. It doesn’t feel heavy and doesn’t cake on top of foundation. I apply the smallest amount anyway because it’s all I need. I do press it into my pores with my Wayne Goss Air Brush and have also used a makeup puff and both methods work well. It mattifies without drying out my skin and is translucent. Great for the sweaty humid weather here in Sydney.

Purchased from Beautylish.com

Bronzer

I have liked cream bronzers too but since they require a bit more time to apply I didn’t include any for this category. I also didn’t love any cream bronzers enough to include it.

Becca – Sunlit Bronzer

This bronzer is smooth and easy to apply. The payoff is sheer and buildable and the shade, Capri Coast, really compliments my skin tone. Because it isn’t matte, it adds a healthy dimension to the face. It looks shimmery in the pan but it doesn’t translate once applied on the face. Really lovely option for those who are after a healthy and warm complexion.

Purchased from Beautylish.com

Blush

Hourglass – Ambient Lighting Blush

Hourglass – Ambient Lighting Blush – Diffused Heat

This was my first taste of the amazing quality which are Hourglass blushes. The shade Diffused Heat was rated highly by Temptalia and I very much agree. It is so easy to blend and the color payoff is amazing. The marbling is so beautiful, making it a joy to look at and use. This shade is a peachy pink on me and gives me a healthy looking flush and really compliments my complexion.

Purchased from Mecca.

Honourable cream blush mention goes to the RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek in Shade #Illusive. I carry this in my gym bag and gives such a healthy flush to the cheeks. Reviewed here.

Highlighter

This was the year of discovery for highlighters for me. Two years ago I didn’t even wear any bronzer or highlighter, just blush, how things have changed 🙂

NARS – Highlighting Powder

NARS – Highlighting Powder

My absolute favourite has to to be the NARS Highlighting powder in shade Fort De France, a newish release from NARS last year. It is so finely milled, so it never looks powdery or cakey and doesn’t emphasise any texture. There is no shimmer whatsoever, just imparts a wonderful sheen. The colour is also perfect for my skin tone. If you are after a natural looking glow without looking like a tin man or disco ball, this one would be for you.

Purchased from Mecca.

A couple of honorable mentions for cream highlighters. The Son and Park Cube Highlighter and the RMS Beauty Living Luminizer were two highlighters I enjoyed using throughout the year but I didn’t favour them enough over the NARS highlighter.

Eyeshadow

Last year was also the year of eyeshadows for me. I’m still not the most creative and experimental mainly because I’m lazy. It was really hard to pick just one eyeshadow palette…

Urban Decay – Born to Run Eyeshadow Palette

This palette is the most versatile, easy to use and colour payoff is just amazing. It has so many shades across such a good variety of spectrums that you’ll be hard pressed to not find a colour that you were after. The formula is also beginner friendly, both matte and shimmer shades blend and layer very easily. This palette can also take you from day to night, simple looks to smoky looks can be achieved which makes it the best all rounder palette in my opinion. Their Naked palettes have kind of bored me, never interested me enough to pick up but this got my attention right away. Has not disappointed me yet, love!

Purchased at Mecca.

Eyeliner

Also had to break this into two sub categories, as there were two standouts last year.

Clio Waterproof Pen Liner Kill Black

Clio Waterproof Pen Liner Kill Black (top)

After using a couple of tubes of the Macqueen liquid liner (reviewed here), I thought it was time to branch out. The Clio Pen liner is so popular among the masses so I had to try it. I got it in Kill Black and it’s pretty darn good. It’s definitely waterproof, smudge proof and the pen applicator is brush-like and easy to use and control. I hate the stiff actual pen applicators since they catch on my lids and wreak havoc. It’s very similar to my beloved Macqueen liner but I feel like the product keeps longer, as in doesn’t dry out as quickly.

Purchased from yesstyle.com*

Shu Uemura Lasting Soft Gel Pencil Eyeliner

Shu Uemura Lasting Soft Gel Pencil Eyeliner (bottom)

It’s been a hard task, trying to find a pencil eyeliner that doesn’t smudge on my hooded eyes. I have oily eyelids so I need something to stay put and not give me panda eyes by midday. Have tried many korean and western eye pencils and none have really passed this test. I bought this Shu Uemura eye pencil on a whim (#Dark brown) and it’s been a reliable friend ever since. It has a very precise tip and while it isn’t overly creamy, it’s creamy enough to glide over the lid without catching on anything. I don’t tightline (it’s very uncomfortable) and don’t apply it to my waterline either so I can’t speak for when it is applied in those areas but I can say that when I apply it over my lid, it never smudges. I don’t use it to create a wing or anything, I use it when I need a little definition, usually when I wear eyeshadow. Otherwise eyeliner is a step I’m happy to skip if I’m going to work or am in a massive rush.

If you have any recommendations for a reliable smudge proof eye pencil, please let me know because I’m always on the lookout for more affordable options.

Purchased from yesstyle.com*

Lipstick

I only have one pair of lips but I have accumulated so many this year. I have my favourite lipsticks in different formulas, mainly from NARS and MAC but the one I have chosen is the most versatile and no brainer option.

Dior Backstage: Dior Addict Lip Glow

Dior Addict Lip Glow

This hybrid formula which Dior describes as a cross between makeup and skincare blew my mind. I thought it was just another overpriced, overhyped product but boy was I mistaken. There are three formulas, matte, original glow and holographic glow and I can only speak for the original formula.

Dior Addict Lip Glow – LTR- Coral, Berry, Pink

It contains mango butter so it’s quite hydrating and moisturising, best of all this feeling lasts, even through a meal. It gives a nice hint of color, contributed by a reaction to your body’s chemistry, as it uses Color Reviver technology to do this. This means that each colour will look different on everyone, pretty cool aye? It also leaves a sheen, making the lips look healthy, imparting them with a glow (true to its name). I can easily reapply without a mirror during the day which is the main reason I love it. It makes me look more alive without all the fuss of a normal lipstick. I have three shades, #berry, #pink #coral and I love coral the most.

Mascara

There were some great finds for mascara last year, some of them I’ve reviewed here.

Hourglass – Caution Extreme Lash Mascara

Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara
Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara

I don’t normally repurchase mascara because I enjoy testing out different ones and because of it’s short life span, you can easily do this.

This Caution mascara is definitely one that I will repurchase. It’s absolutely bullet proof thus making it very reliable. I have played basketball with this, have had my face squished in a massage and it’s lasted all day each time. I always curl my lashes beforehand but this gives the most fluttery and lengthening effect. It does give a little volume as well and also does a good job with lifting and separation of the lashes. So it pretty much does it all, without smudging and flaking.

Skincare favourites of 2018 to follow shortly!

Please note: links in this post marked with an * are affiliate links. They provide me with a small commission, if you should choose to use them for a purchase, without any extra cost to you 🙂

[Brand spotlight] RMS Beauty

RMS beauty was founded by Rose Marie Swift. She is a renowned makeup artist who after having health problems due to toxic ingredients in makeup wanted to find to find a healthier approach to beauty.

Her line is organic and the primary ingredient she likes to use is coconut oil. In an interview with Wendy Rowe (also a makeup artist) in the Beauty Truth, Rose Marie Swift describes the benefits of coconut oil:

This natural antioxidant is 100% organic, raw and unrefined, aiding in its protective powers against free radical damage—otherwise known as premature ageing. Coconut oil contains high levels of lauric acid, which has antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties, making it suitable for even the most blemish-prone skin.

Please note that not just any store-bought oil is equal to ours. RMS Beauty is superior over most coconut oils.

Since being first intrigued by the famous Living Luminizer, I have since added some more RMS products to my little collection. The aesthetics of the brand is clean, modern and minimalistic which resonates with the brand’s purpose of simple beauty.

If you’ve been interested in trying out products from this brand, please keep on reading.

Living Luminizer

rms-02

What is it?

From rmsbeauty.com:

This formula is the ultimate illuminator for creating a sensuous, sheer, luminous glow. An ultra sheer, glowing, luminizer with a translucent, satin-pearl finish. This highlighter works great on all skin tones, making this a must have beauty product.

Ingredients (from mecca.com.au)

*Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, *Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, *Cera Alba (Beeswax), *Rosmarinus officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, and may contain [+/- Titanium Dioxide CI77891, Mica CI 77019] * CERTIFIED ORGANIC

Application

Best to apply with clean fingers. I swirl my index finger in the pot to get the product out, then I lightly pat it onto my cheekbones or wherever I normally apply highlighter. If you have oily skin, you may want to set it lightly with translucent powder. This is also a multi-use product, you can also use it on your eyelids as well as lips.

RMS Beauty - Living Luminizer
RMS Beauty – Living Luminizer

Packaging and size

The balm is housed in a frosted glass pot with a white lid. It feels weighty and sturdy. There is 4.82g/.17oz of product which doesn’t seem like much but it will last you a very long time since you only need a small amount.

RMS Beauty - Living Luminizer
RMS Beauty – Living Luminizer – It’s hard to see the swatch but I can assure you that it looks much better on the face!

Price:

$55.00 AUD (from Mecca)

My thoughts

Rating: 5/5 (love it, HG status!)

This is one of my favourite highlighters in my collection. It was the very first product I had bought from the brand and I love the effect it gives me. It can be built up, from subtle lit-from-within look to a strong glossy glow which still looks natural. Since it’s a cream product, it’s usually criminal to apply cream over powder but you can with this product. It doesn’t mess with the foundation or powder underneath if you use the soft patting technique with your finger. I don’t normally set it with powder because I have combo skin with dry U zone. I usually just set my face with a setting spray like Fix+. This helps to melt the highlighter into all the other layers on the face. It generally lasts around 6 hours and because it looks like one with the skin, the fading isn’t noticeable.

Would highly recommend if you are looking for a natural looking highlight. If you’re like me and you hate chunky glitters or frost in your highlight, you’ll like this! On the RMS beauty website it says this can be used by all skin tones. I don’t think it’s a universal shade (but I also could be wrong) but I think that this highlighter is best suited to fair-to-light-medium skin tones because it has a slightly pale pearly sheen to it. If you are medium-deep, you may want to try out the Magic Luminizer which has a more of a champagne tone to it. On rmsbeauty.com there are also two more variations, Peach and Champagne Rose Luminizers.

Lip2Cheek – Shade #Illusive

RMS Beauty - Lip2Cheek - Shade #Illusive
RMS Beauty – Lip2Cheek – Shade #Illusive

What is it?

From mecca.com:

Fusing a blend of nourishing oils and pure mineral pigments, this creamy emollient can be used on the lips and cheeks for a subtle tint of colour.

Ingredients (from rmsbeauty.com)

*Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, *Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, *Cera Alba (Beeswax) (Cire d’abeille), *Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) Fruit, *Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, *Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, **Buriti (Mauritia Flexuosa) Oil, *Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Tocopherol(non-GMO), Helianthus Annus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Propolis Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract , *Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, May Contain [+/-]: Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Mica

* CERTIFIED ORGANIC 
** WILDCRAFTED

Application

I apply this the same way as with the Luminizer, with my fingers. I swirl my index finger in the pot and use this and my middle finger to pat it onto my cheeks, slowly building it up to the desired level of opacity. When applying it onto my lips or eyelids, I use my index finger. It’s also buildable and dries down nicely. You could use a small duo fibre brush as well.

RMS Beauty - Lip2Cheek - Shade #Illusive
RMS Beauty – Lip2Cheek – Shade #Illusive

Packaging and size

Same size and packaging as the Luminizer, 4.82g/0.17oz of product. I really like the frosted look of the weighted pot.

Price:

$52.00 AUD (from Mecca)

RMS Beauty - Lip2Cheek - Shade #Illusive
RMS Beauty – Lip2Cheek – Shade #Illusive – this was swatched quite strongly, once blended in, the colour looks much less intense.

My thoughts

Rating: 4/5 (really like it!)

I love anything that I can use for more than one purpose, largely because I’m lazy. I really like the texture of it and how I have some play time before it dries down. Since I have light-medium skin, the shade Illusive works nicely on the cheeks, eyes and lips. Because of its nourishing ingredients, it leaves my cheeks looking fresh and hydrated. It isn’t long lasting on the lips (nothing ever is on my lips!), bit longer on the eyes (3-4 hours) and the longest (6 hours) on the cheeks. Even though it’s not that long lasting, it tends to fade evenly which is a plus.

With any cream product, it always takes a bit more time in application, but the payoff is always more natural and worth it. Since I don’t always have too much time in the mornings, I generally opt for powders and use this on the weekends.

Definitely recommend this, it’s great for touchups and to just throw in the handbag. I’ll be looking to add more shades of Lip2Cheek to my collection since I’m hooked 🙂 Promise and Paradise look divine!

Tinted Un Powder – Shade #2-3

Tinted Un Powder - Shade #2-3
Tinted Un Powder – Shade #2-3

What is it?

From mecca.com:

This tinted powder contains light reflective particles that work to minimise the look of pores, soften the skin and absorb excess oil. Providing subtle coverage to the skin, the powder can be used to set liquid foundation or be worn with ‘Un Cover-Up’.
Talc, silicone, perfume and paraben free.

Ingredients (from mecca.com)

T2-3: Silica, Iron Oxides: CI 77492, CI 77491, CI 77500

Application

Like with all loose powders, I tip some into the cap then swirl a powder brush into it. I then tap off the excess on the side of the cap and lightly press it onto my face. I stupidly threw the puff it came with away so using a brush works best for me.

Tinted Un Powder - Shade #2-3
Tinted Un Powder – Shade #2-3 – the powder is very finely milled, there’s some on the cap.

Packaging and size

Clear plastic tub with white lid and has 9g/0.32oz of product. Smaller more compact than other loose powders I own such as the famed Laura Mercier Translucent Powder.

Price

$49.00 AUD from Mecca

My thoughts

Rating: 4/5 (really like it!)

This powder does what it says it does. It sets my foundation nicely and the 2-3 shade matches my skin tone perfectly. The powder is so finely milled which makes application a breeze. It never looks cakey and just melts into the skin, leaving my face with a healthy glow. It does minimise the pores around my nose and controls oil in my t-zone for around 8 hours.

It’s not something I reach for everyday since it’s a loose powder and takes a bit more time to apply then a pressed powder. As I’ve mentioned previously, I’m quite time poor in the mornings but I do like to use this whenever I remember to.

Would definitely recommend this powder because it doesn’t have talc like most powders and performs just as well or even better than most powders I have tried.

Wild With Desire Lipstick – Shade #Brain teaser

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What is it?

From rmsbeauty.com:

This luxurious natural satin-finish lipstick is enriched with the signature rms beauty oil. Rich and powerful in anti-oxidants, this lipstick offers ultimate hydration and maximum color pay-off.

Ingredients (from rmsbeauty.com)

*Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Ethylhexyl Hydroxystearate, Cera Alba (Beeswax)(Cire d’abeille), Sucrose Acetate Isobutyrate, Kaolin, *Candelilla Cera (Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax) (Cire de candelilla), Hydrogenated Castor Oil, *Cera Carnauba (Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax) (Cire de carnauba), *Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Silica, Tocopherol, Isostearyl Palmitate, *Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Cetyl Alcohol, *Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, *Hypericum Perforatum Extract, *Equisetum Arvense Extract, *Calendula Officinalis Extract, *Hemidesmus Indicus Root Extract, *Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Leaf Extract, *Withania Somnifera Root Powder, *Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Leaf Extract, *Olea Europaea (Olive) Leaf Extract, Lecithin, Propanediol, Pentylene glycol, *Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Wax, Propylene Carbonate, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, **Mauritia Flexuosa (Buriti) Fruit Oil. May Contain [-/+]: Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Red 28 (CI 45410), Mica, Blue 1 (CI 42090), Red 6 (CI 15850), Red 7 (CI 15850), Red 40 (CI 16035), Yellow 5 (CI 19140), Yellow 6 (CI 15985). 

* CERTIFIED ORGANIC
** WILDCRAFTED

Application

I apply it directly from the bullet onto my lips. Because it’s formula is a bit stiff, I tend to dab it onto my lips rather than using a swiping motion.

Wild With Desire Lipstick - Shade #Brain teaser
Wild With Desire Lipstick – Shade #Brain teaser

Packaging and size

The lipstick is housed in a sleek, silver tube. There is a slight weight to it and like her other products, has a clean and modern aesthetic to it. It contains 4.5g/0.15oz of product. The cap is very secure and gives a satisfying click when you close it.

Price:

$41.00 AUD (from Mecca)

Wild With Desire Lipstick - Shade #Brain teaser
Wild With Desire Lipstick – Shade #Brain teaser – swatch is using only one (wonky) swipe!

My thoughts

I love the formula of this lipstick. It’s a satin formula which is comfortable to wear and I love the shade Brainteaser. It is a soft peachy pink brown (more peach than pink on me), which is generally the type of colour that I’m usually drawn to. I can’t speak for its lasting power because not many lipsticks last on me after my morning coffee. I like how it contains nourishing ingredients such as shea butter and oils as well as antioxidants like turmeric and liquorice root. Quite rare to even get antioxidants in a lip product, let alone in an actual opaque lipstick.

I would highly recommend this for people who are looking for a lipstick which has nourishing ingredients as well as great colour payoff. Definitely will be purchasing more shades, the shade “Rapture” is calling my name!

Where can I buy it?

If you’re in Australia, you can purchase RMS Beauty from Mecca Cosmetica (mecca.com.au), Beautylish (beautylish.com) as well as from the brand’s website (rmsbeauty.com).

I purchased these products myself from Mecca Cosmetica and Beautylish.

Final thoughts

Nothing from this range has disappointed me so far and I’m excited to try more from the brand. Taking care of your skin shouldn’t just stop at skincare. If there are cleaner options which perform just well or better, I will definitely take it! The products might seem expensive for their quantity but because a little does go a long way, especially with the potted products, you won’t be hitting pan for a long while.

Since coconut oil is a key ingredient in a lot of the cream products, I was a bit wary since I’ve heard that it is or can be comedogenic to certain skin types. I actually had nothing to worry about because I never broke out from it. For reference I have combo skin/oily t-zone/prone to hormonal acne. There is also no scent in any of the products which is a plus because I hate most scents in makeup. The products are also a joy to use, both in application and aesthetics. The un-cover up concealer, eye polish and raw coconut cream cleanser are definitely on my wishlist!

Let me know if you’ve tried any products from RMS beauty and which has been your favourite 🙂

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Nars x Erdem Strange Flowers Collection – Limited Edition

What’s that smell?! Skincare and makeup which smell bad (to me)

During my journey of trying new products, I have come to know what I like and what I don’t like in products. One of the things I despise is if a product has an overpowering and unpleasant scent, whether it be by added fragrance or naturally derived. I wouldn’t say that I’m super sensitive to scents but if something smells bad, I’m not going to keep using it, regardless of how effective it is.

The following products I have ceased to use because of this. Just because I don’t like the smell of these things, doesn’t mean that the product is awful. If you like any of the products I am listing, please don’t take it personally as in the end it’s all just skincare and makeup! I also won’t be going into too much detail about the product since I don’t like them. Ok let’s go!

I’m Pro Ampoule Pad – Wish Formula

smell01

What is it?

It’s a cotton pad soaked in ampoule containing ascorbic acid as well as other antioxidants which help with brightening. The texture of the pad is supposed to provide a gentle exfoliation as well.

Ingredients(cosdna analysis)

It smells like…

Soy sauce. I mean I love eating soy sauce but I don’t want it in my pores. I don’t know if I got a bad batch or what. After some quick googling, it looks like some people have experienced a funky smell as well but they haven’t described it to be specifically like soy sauce. I don’t understand the expiry since it’s in Korean and both dates have passed already. If it is indeed expired, I am thoroughly annoyed since this is from an actual k-beauty store. I really didn’t pay any attention to how it performed since I couldn’t get past the smell. My husband has also used it and the smell lingered even after he had applied moisturiser.

Price: $4.90 AUD each from boniik.com

Pop Blush – The Face Shop

smell06

What is it?

A powder blush which I bought in the shade Neutral Pop.

It smells like…

Chemicals. Straight up chemicals which doesn’t dissipate after application. It isn’t very pigmented and feels dusty when I apply it to my cheeks. A big dud on performance and smell. Cute packaging though, the flower imprint and packaging is similar to Clinique’s Cheek Pop blushes.

Price: $8.99 AUD from eBay *

Ultra Moisturising Sun Cream – Kicho

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What is it?

A chemical and physical sunscreen which contains lots of plant extracts in a moisturising formula.

Ingredients – (cosdna analysis)

smell04.jpg

It smells like…

Apples and something else in a brand I will be be speaking about next. The scent has been described as “delicate” and “fresh” but I don’t find it to be either. Fragrance is the third last ingredient but it might have been in the top three because I found it to be strong. The sunscreen itself applied nicely. It was moisturising and sunk in quite well. But you could still smell it after application. I also didn’t like this sunscreen because it made my face itch a bit whenever I sweated. It gets pretty humid in Sydney so it’s normal for me to sweat and I didn’t enjoy feeling further discomfort ,and I knew it was from this because I tested it a few times just to be sure.

Price: $42 AUD from lilacandberries.com

Huxley essence and oil trio – Secret of the Sahara Light and More, Essence like oil and Essence grab water

smell03

What is it?

Serums, each with their own characteristics. The Light and More is an oil, Essence like oil is a thick essence and the Essence Grab water is a hydrating serum.

Ingredients: cosdna analysis below

Light and More
Essence like oil
Essence Grab Water

It smells like…

The scent of Huxley products has been described as a “fresh rose bush” but I have never smelt a rose bush quite like this one. The star ingredient in their products is the prickly pear which is a cactus. I have no idea what this smells like. The scent is very strong and perfumed, gives me a headache. The products I have in the trial sizes were duds in performance. The dropper is useless, doesn’t dispense the serums properly. My skin doesn’t feel any different after application. But my opinion around this is probably masked by the smell. I actually didn’t even bother using the oil. I also just noticed that alcohol is pretty high on the list for all three products. Alcohol in an oil is a bit odd.

Huxley is atheistically pleasing, there is no denying that but that’s where it ends for me.  Pretty glad that I bought these mini sizes as a taster, I would’ve been pretty annoyed if I was stuck with a full sized bottle of any of these.

Price: $35 AUD from nudieglow.com (they have updated the pack since with a fourth serum)

Black Soybean Milk Pudding Sleeping Pack – Botanic Farm

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What is it?

A sleeping pack which contains fermented black soybeans as well as milk protein and cacao extract. This pack is supposed to help brighten, hydrate and help with signs of ageing.

Ingredients – from sokoglam.com

Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Butylene Glycol, Niacinamide, Betaine, Cyclopentasiloxane, Hydrolyzed collagen, Lactobacillus/ soybean Ferment Extract, Theobroma Cacao Extract, Gardenia Florida Fruit Extract, Glycine Soja Seed Extract, Monascus Extract, Milk Protein, Carthamus Tinctorius Flower Extract, Glycerin, Urea, PEG-240/ HDI Copolymer Bis-Decyltetradeceth-20 Ether, Polysorbate 20, Dimethicone, Dimethicone/ Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Caprylyl Glycol, Dimethiconol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Adenosine, Aminomethyl propanol, Sodium Polyacrylate, PVM/ma copolymer, Maltodextrin, Carbomer, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol

IMG_20180610_193525

It smells like…

It has been described as smelling like chocolates, delicious enough to eat…well I beg to differ. It smells like a biscuit or something, but not in a good way. It’s hard to describe it, all I know is that I don’t like it. It’s not as unpleasant as some of the other things I’ve spoken about but still not great. The product itself actually stings my face upon application and makes my face feel like it’s suffocating. The stinging does subside but by this time, I’m already stressed and my face is left smelling like a weird biscuit. Stressing out before bed is not something I enjoy doing. I have used and currently use acids in my routine and none of these have compared to the stinging and distress I experienced with this sleeping pack.

Price: $30 AUD from eBay *

Amazonian butter lipstick – Tarte

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What is it?

A hydrating lipstick in a creamy formula. It contains amazonian butters.

It smells like…

Mint. Very minty and I hate minty lip products. It contains heaps of ingredients, one of which is peppermint oil. I bought the shade Park Ave Princess and it’s way too light for my lips. The packaging is pretty and I like the idea of it but the smell is a big no no. I can’t even tell you how it performs since I’ve only tried it twice and have removed it momentarily each time. I’ve tried other lipsticks from Tarte including their Color splash hydrating type and I really love that one!

Price: $24 AUD from tartecosmetics.com

Hi fi shine ultra cushion lipgloss – Urban Decay

smell051.jpg

What is it?

A comfortable lipgloss which is supposed to plump and hydrate the lips.

It smells like…

Mint. Here we go again. Peppermint oil strikes again. I received this mini size in a Mecca Beauty Loop box and while I like the colour, I hate the smell. It makes my lips tingle, I guess that’s when the plumping effect is happening. But I can’t stand the minty smell. Can’t get past it and don’t particularly want bigger lips anyway. I’m all about comfort and this does not feel comfortable at all. It’s probably a big reason why I haven’t found a favourite lip gloss yet.

Price: Free – Part of beauty box (Mecca member benefits)

Final thoughts

As mentioned at the start, if you enjoy any of these products and don’t mind their scents, then that’s awesome. I enjoy other stuff from the brands I mentioned (except for the Face Shop and Botanic Farm since it’s the first product I’ve tried from the brand), so I’m not dismissing the brand at all, just these particular products 😦  They didn’t work for me and I wouldn’t recommend them to anyone.

Please note: links in this post marked with an * are affiliate links. They provide me with a small commission, if you should choose to use them for a purchase, without any extra cost to you 🙂

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Etude House – Disappointing products

Etude House products are generally quite affordable, comparable to drug store prices and the brand is massive in Korea.

I’ve purchased a few of their skincare and makeup products and just like with any beauty line, they haven’t all worked out for me. It’s not all grim as I will be talking about the ones I do enjoy in a later post.

Today I will be talking about three items which just didn’t work out for me personally. If you happen to love any of them, I applaud you because for the life of me, I couldn’t get any of them to work.

Berry Delicious Cream Blusher #OR201

Berry Delicious Cream Blusher #OR201
Berry Delicious Cream Blusher #OR201

What is it?

From Etude house’s website:
This is a moist strawberry coloured cream blusher that flushes cheeks for a lovely look.

Why it didn’t work out for me:

Its texture isn’t creamy, its almost like a pressed powder. It feels slightly oily and almost velvet when I touch it with my fingers. Kind of hard to explain.

Along with the strange texture there is hardly any pigment to it. I have tried using the air puff (provided) and no matter how much I pat the puff onto the blush cake, the colour just doesn’t show up on my skin tone. I’m a NC30 for reference. Tried to apply it with my fingers and no such luck either. I’m sure that if I took the time to layer 5 layers on, something might show up but who can be bothered doing that?!

Berry Delicious Cream Blusher #OR201
Poor pigment, so poor swatch. Had to go in hard for this to show up :/

Another criticism would be the smell, smells strongly of peaches and chemicals.

Etude House has loads of other blush options to choose from so I would try something else instead. If you are my skin colour or darker, I wouldn’t recommend this product.

Price: $11.50 AUD from jolse.com

Dr Mascara Fixer – Perfect Lash

Dr Mascara Fixer
Dr Mascara Fixer, couldn’t get it to stand up by itself or lay down properly for the shot. Just an overall disaster.

What is it?

From Etude house’s website:
This transparent fixing gel mascara offers perfect curl / volume / waterproof fix in any environment and climate. Infused with Black Food extracts to condition lashes.

Why it didn’t work out for me:

I bought this when I first got into korean makeup and didn’t know any better. I saw a video where Gothamista used it and it made a substantial difference to the curl on her lashes. I think this fixer comes in two types, I may not have bought the same one as hers.

Anyway I used this fixer before I applied my regular black mascara. My biggest gripe is that it leaves white clumps on my lashes. The white clumps shouldn’t be an issue because I am overlaying another mascara over it. But no, my black mascara isn’t able to fully cover the white bits. On the lashes where it can, it paints over the clumps making it even more clumpy and spidery looking. All of this is minus any volume or curling action on my lashes. I bought this product hoping that it was clear and I could use it without applying mascara. Turns out I can’t use it either way.

I wouldn’t even bother with a lash primer anymore (bit gimmicky), I’ll just use my trusty Shu Uemura eyelash curler as I always have. The mascara which I have been using from Heroine Make is a rockstar on its own, more on that next time!

Price: $7.55 AUD from eBay *

Oh m’eye line eyeliner – Black

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What is it?

From Etude house’s website:
This highly pigmented, smudge-proof liquid liner goes on smoothly for precise application and creates strong, beautiful lines that last.

Why it didn’t work out for me:

It’s pigmented, but it’s also very wet. There is too much product on the brush when you extract it from the tube. When I try to draw any type of line, the line bleeds straight away and it looks blobby (refer to the swatch for what I mean by this). I’ve tried using both small strokes and large strokes and to no avail. It’s a streaky and blobby hell. After doing some googling, I discovered that other people have also had a tricky time with application.

Oh m'eye line eyeliner - Black
Blobby mess – Oh m’eye line eyeliner – Black

The tiny brush is a bit too flexible and small for my liking, making it even harder to get a straight line. I’ve never been able to get this to work so I can’t comment on wear time or if it smudges. I’m no MUA, but I know how to apply eyeliner on myself. Eyeliner is a product which I am extremely picky with since I have hooded eyes and semi-oily lids. I’ve tried more bad ones than good ones and I would put this in the very bad category. For my HG, check out this post on the Macqueen liquid liner.

Price: $8.95 AUD from eBay *

Final thoughts

I hope this has been of help to anyone who has been curious about these products.
Again, I need to stress that if you happen to like any of them, I’m glad to hear it. It’s just a bummer that I couldn’t get them to work for me.

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Please note: links in this post marked with an * are affiliate links. They provide me with a small commission, if you should choose to use them for a purchase, without any extra cost to you 🙂