Photo of makeup products which I no longer need

Makeup that I no longer need in my life

After years of buying, trying and decluttering makeup, I have learnt what works for my skin, style and aesthetic. Especially after barely wearing any makeup in 2020 I have come to realise what I really like and actually enjoy using.

I’m in my late 30s and I’ve come to realise that there are products that I have that aren’t really necessary. Either I no longer enjoy its effect or a multitasker exists that does the same job or I want to cut out the step entirely because I’m lazy. I mean makeup itself isn’t necessary, people wear it for different reasons, as do I. There are a few categories of products that I can definitely live without so if you’re interested to find out what they are, please keep on reading 🙂

Highlighters

Cream, liquid and powder highlighters. When I first started watching beauty YouTube, every person would use highlighter when doing their makeup. Even when most of the time I didn’t like how it looked on them, even under all their fancy lights, I still yearned to have it too. The packaging is generally gorgeous and who doesn’t like (the look of) all that pretty shimmer. So I bought a bunch over time and slowly realised that I hardly used it. I have pigmentation on my cheek bones, it’s not that obvious with foundation and concealer but when I used highlighter it just seemed to make them reappear (duh it’s job is to highlight) and my meticulous concealing work proved to be a waste of time. I guess out of the three types I do prefer cream because I can lightly tap it onto my cheekbones so it doesn’t disturb my base but it’s still not a necessity for me. I remember buying my first highlighter, which was RMS’s Living Luminizer, it was so damn beautiful but I couldn’t even make a dent in it before it decided to expire on me.

I have always favoured a more natural application of makeup, so I’ve never liked to shine like a disco ball. Kudos to those who do though, each their own. Also by the time I normally apply highlighter, I already have foundation, concealer, blush and bronzer on and my skin is already looking quite dewy so happy to skip it since I think that’s already quite enough for my liking. Enough time spent!

Primers

Ever since I started wearing sunscreen daily I have barely touched my primers. I would classify liquid glowy illuminators as a primer too, not just pore filling or hydrating ones. I’ve been trying to use up my Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter, which is beautiful, but I have no idea how much I’ve used up from its packaging and now it smells funny (time to toss). There’s also a liquid illuminator from Burberry that I’m almost done with, purchased at a time when I was really into primers and Sephora. I mean I enjoy their effect, which is glowy skin, but I already get that effect of healthy and dewy skin from the sunscreens and foundations that I use. I’ve used the og Porefessional from Benefit (never worked for me) and so many others and have been tempted by Tatcha’s Liquid Silk Canvas due to hearing so many rave reviews. But at the end of the day, it’s an extra step for me and if I had bought it I wouldn’t remember to use it.

I’ve been much more mindful about buying any primers and haven’t for a long time. Even if I were to get ready for a dinner out, I still wouldn’t miss the primer step. There’s the suggestion that primer will help your makeup’s longevity, but honestly I don’t need my makeup to last that long, I’ve been working from home and also in work in IT. I also haven’t experienced much of a difference between no primer or primer (even those which had long lasting claims). Primers are also expensive, almost the same price as foundations sometimes. If I were to pick between the two it would be foundation everytime.

Lip liners

Some people love lip liners, they can’t do their lips without it. I am not one of those people, though I have tried to be. Again I fell for the whole beauty YouTuber marketing telling me that I needed to use lip liner before lipstick application. I’ve also been told that it can make your lipstick lasts longer too (which for me it never does). I mean I can definately see a place for it, especially if you want a precise application of darker or red lipsticks, or if you are a MUA, but for ordinary me I’m mainly a neutral lip person and am pretty basic with my lip products. I’ve used liners maybe twice in my life, so the bunch of lip liners that I have are just sitting there, waiting to expire or have expired.

Setting spray

I used to love spritzing my face with Mac’s Prep and Prime aka Fix+ because that’s what people in YouTube did. Besides that I did like the feeling of it and the way it made my face look and feel. But like I mentioned before, I already use dewy and glowy products like sunscreen and foundation and I don’t really care about longevity anymore so using a setting spray as part of my regular makeup routine was overkill.

Urban decay’s (original) all nighter did a good job in locking in makeup but I always thought it smelt weird and I have not owned it for a long time. It no longer has a place in my makeup routine since I haven’t been going to any occasions where I needed my makeup to be glued onto my face for 20hrs. It’s also full of denatured alcohol so use it with caution and only if you really need to.
I also don’t apply powder all over face anymore, I only apply it in my t-zone where I really need it. Therefore I no longer need a hydrating setting spray like Fix+ to tone down the matte or powdery look.

I still own some of these products and have sold some as well. Lip liners are probably ready to be tossed.
For the ones I have kept, I will keep using them for when I can be bothered or remember to. Basically just to use them up which won’t be anytime soon (I’m looking at you powder highlighters). But I will not be buying anymore products from these categories in future. I know that not everyone will agree with my reasoning but they are just my opinions. Makeup is very personal so you do you.

What products did you use to love but no longer use or see a purpose for? I’d love to know.

[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] Chanel – Les Beiges Water Fresh Tint (Eau De Teint)

Chanel’s Les Beiges Summer 2019 collection recently landed in Australia and while I would have loved to grab the whole lot, there was one product that I had been lusting over for months.

The Water fresh tint is so unique and really stood out from the masses of like-foundation. Chanel’s website suggests that you can use this in three ways, as a primer, alone or as a touch up product. The concept and it’s texture were intriguing so if you want to know my thoughts on this product please keep on reading.

Claims

From chanel.com

The first CHANEL complexion tint featuring pigment micro-droplets that deliver a water-fresh sensation and a radiant, healthy-looking glow.

Created with patented MicroFluidic technology, the lightweight gel texture bursts with ultra-pure ingredients for a bare-skin effect with eight hours of hydration and comfort. Skin feels refreshed and energized.

Texture

The texture of this tint is something else. It has a gel consistency and is transparent so you can really see the pigments suspended in it.

Chanel Les Beiges Water Fresh Tint – gel texture with micro pigments suspended

How to apply

Chanel recommends to pump some (I use two pumps at a time) on the back of your hand and then to use a brush to break the pigments up to mesh with the gel. Once mixed, you then apply it with the brush. The brush provided is fine but is a bit on the small side. If you have similar flat top brushes then they will be ok too. I generally just swirl it around my face and because it’s so lightweight, it’s so quick and easy to do. I sometimes use another pump or two just to adequately cover my face. The burst of coolness on application is really refreshing and would be amazing in summer (it’s almost Winter here). I’ve also applied it using my fingers and that works nicely too.

Chanel Les Beiges Water Fresh Tint – texture once the pigments are mixed up.

Coverage

This is a tint so there is little to no coverage. I will describe it as sheer coverage at best. It does a really good job of evening out my skintone and giving me a hydrated and luminous skin effect without any heaviness and cakiness. There is 75% water in this formula as well as tamarind seed extract which helps with hydration, resulting in that natural and healthy glow. I would normally use concealer if I want to cover up any old acne scars or pigmentation as I would do with any other foundation. I would rather let my natural skin show through and spot conceal any troubled areas.

Packaging

It comes in a frosted plastic bottle with a pump which is both elegant and practical. Included is a small buffing brush which probably more useful for touchups but works fine nether less.

Chanel Les Beiges Water Fresh Tint – frosted plastic cylinder with a pump
Chanel Les Beiges Water Fresh Tint – buffing brush which is included. It’s bristles are soft but dense enough to distribute the product evenly

Shade

I bought the shade Medium. It might look scary dark in the bottle but when swatched, it looks more normal. I’m an NC30 and this shade suits me fine.

There are 6 shades available from Light to Deep. This doesn’t sound like enough in hindsight but because the formula is so sheer, there is a lot of give around the shades. I recommend that you go in store if possible and swatch it just to be certain since it is pretty pricey.

Lasting power

I only wear this as a standalone base product and powder my t-zone where I get a bit oily during the day. I didn’t have high hopes for longevity but surprisingly it holds up for a whole work day (8-9 hours) and I can still see traces it on my face when I go to remove it which is much later (around 10-12 hrs). It wears very well and fades evenly without patching off like some foundations. All the while my face doesn’t feel dry at all, very much hydrated in fact which I really appreciate especially with the cold winds we’ve been experiencing in Sydney.

Cost

$109 AUD from Myer. Included is a small brush and is 30ml.

Final thoughts

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

I genuinely love this product, it’s the perfect base to throw on quickly without having to worry about it fading or caking off. It’s ideal for people who like a natural and fresh look. Glass skin is all the rage (born from Korean skincare) and I can confidently say that it can be achieved with this product. This is the look I generally like to go for day to day. The cooling effect when it touches your skin is just very unique to me and really wakes me up in the morning which is a great bonus! The only downside is the price and since I need to use at least 3-4 pumps each time, it wouldn’t last as long as regular foundations. If you’ve been curious about it, I would go get a sample or try it at your local Chanel counter.

Skincare favourites of 2018

There were plenty of great skincare finds in 2018 making it hard to be selective. I don’t use all of these products everyday but they were (and still are) my absolute go-to products in the last year.

Cleanser – Muji Oil Cleanser

Muji Oil Cleanser

I’ve only tried two products from their skin care line and would definitely want to try more. I love the simple aesthetics and the effectiveness of their products. One stand out was their Oil Cleanser. There are two types, sensitive and normal. I have the normal one. It’s texture isn’t too runny and because I keep buying the travel size, it comes in a flip cap bottle and is relatively mess free to use. It is rich but emollient enough to easily rub on my face and rinses off completely clean. It even removes mascara and eyeliner really well. I always follow with a second cleanse anyway. It’s pretty affordable and the full size comes in a pump so will definitely buy that when I’ve run out.

Purchased from Muji.

Exfoliant – Neogen Dermalogy Bio Peel Gauze Peeling

Neogen Dermalogy Bio Peel Gauze Peeling – Green Tea

I’m currently on my second jar as I can’t get enough of it. I have the green tea version and have also tried the lemon which is a better option for brightening. I like both but prefer the lemon because of it’s fresh scent.

This is a great option for a lazy person like me. Each gauze pad is already soaked in a cocktail of ingredients such as green tea, glycerin, glycolic and lactic acid. It’s a chemical and physical exfoliant in the one little pad. All you need to do to use it is, rub the more textured side all over the face and then repeat with the smoother quilted side to fully sloth of all remnants of dead skin. Then you rinse it all off with warm water and you’re left with smooth, clear skin. Each pad is single use only so remember to toss it out after each use.

I use this around 1-2 times a week.

Purchased from ebay*

Toner – Hanskin Real Complexion Hyaluron Skin Essence

Hanskin – Real Complexion Hyaluron Skin Essence

This toner is filled with sodium hyaluronate and is hydrating without leaving any residue. The absorption rate is phenomenal which is great for a person like me who doesn’t like to wait between layers.

The texture is viscose without being too thick. It’s a good one for layering because it has a little body to it. After cleansing I pour a few drops into my palm and press it onto my skin. I have dehydrated skin so it’s like I’m giving my skin a big drink of water each time. It is marketed as an essence but you can use it in whatever step feels right for you. I rarely use essence every morning so if it’s a two in one, then it’s a nice bonus 🙂

Purchased from yesstyle.com*

Serum – The Ordinary Advanced Retinoid 2%

The Ordinary Advanced Retinoid 2%

This was the first product I tried from the brand, based on recommendations from Renee (Gothamista) on Youtube. Being a total novice, I wanted to start slow and this turned out to be perfect. I apply it in the evening after toner or essence. It has a milky viscosity and I only use 3-4 drops each time. It absorbs really quickly and best of all, it never irritated my skin. I don’t have obvious signs of ageing so I can’t tell you if it helped with wrinkles. It did, however, smooth out my skin’s texture and helped normalize my cheek area because I tend to get unevenness there. It’s also supposed to help with acne and pigmentation but I didn’t really see much of a difference in the 6 months I used it for.

It’s now been re-labelled as Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion with the same ingredients. I haven’t tried this yet but hopefully it is exactly the same because I will be definitely buying this again. I’m using their Retinol 0.2% in Squalene at the moment and I find that it’s too oily in texture so not enjoying it.

Purchased from Adore Beauty.

Face oil – Youth to the People Superberry Hydrate and Glow Oil

Youth to the People Superberry Hydrate and Glow Oil

I’ve used up a travel size of this oil, bought it from eBay before my local Sephora ended up stocking it (finally!). It feels lightweight, has a nice subtle scent and hydrates the skin with just enough dew. It’s moisturising too so most days during the warmer months, I will skip moisturiser. It doesn’t leave an oily residue which I love and sits well under makeup. Gives the skin a nice subtle hydrated glow. It has surpassed my love for Drunk Elephant’s Marula Oil (reviewed here), something I thought couldn’t possibly happen.

Purchased travel size from eBay * and full size from Sephora.

Eye cream – Belif Peat Miracle Revital Eye Cream

Belif Peat Miracle Revital Eye Cream

This eye cream has the characteristics of being perfection. It is easily absorbable, rich yet lightweight, doesn’t leave a residue and doesn’t give me milia. I don’t have obvious lines around my eyes but the skin in that area definitely isn’t as taut as they used to be. This cream hydrated and moisturises without causing any sensitivity to my eyes. The small jar is only 25ml but has lasted me a year and still going strong.

I didn’t know what Peat was and I’m always skeptical when “miracle” is used in a product’s name. It’s a big reason why I don’t try La Mer because their “miracle broth” sounds like a load of crock. Peat is basically dead, decomposed plant residue (sounds gross) but because it originates from moors, bogs and old glaciers, it is rich in minerals and antioxidants, hence it is considered a powerhouse ingredient for anti ageing. Whatever it is, it’s effective and I like it.

Purchased from yesstyle.com*

Sunscreen – Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF50+/PA++++ 

Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF50+/PA++++

This sunscreen is fairly new to me but I have used it long enough to fall deeply in love with it. It’s a chemical sunscreen loaded with hydrating, moisturising and brightening ingredients such as Niacinamide, Adenosine, Panthenol , Beta-Glucan and Sea Buckthorn Oil.

It has zero white cast and has the texture of a light moisturiser, hence it’s name “soft and airy”. I have combo skin so I substitute my morning moisturiser with this and it is enough for my skin. It sits well under makeup too which is a plus.

Purchased from eBay *

Other – COSRX Acne Pimple Master Patch

COSRX Acne Pimple Master Patch
COSRX Acne Pimple Master Patch

This super popular product needs no introduction. I wrote a full review here. They are hydrocolloid patches and when applied to active breakouts, either dramatically flatten the pimple or bring it to a head so it can heal quicker. I used so many of these little bad boys last year especially during the bout of acne I suddenly got around my jawline. The worst thing to do is touch active pimples so with these patches on them, it prevented me from contaminating them with my fingers. I think they make a huge difference so will probably keep buying them for as long as I keep getting acne.

Purchased from yesstyle.com*

Well that’s it! You may have noticed that I didn’t include a moisturiser, essence or masks in my favourites. I’ve used some decent products but nothing that has really stood out.

What skincare product(s) could you not live without in 2018? Do let me know as I’m always looking for 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 🙂

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 🙂

Top 4 mascaras which I can always rely on!

Mascara is one of those makeup items which I’ve constantly switched up and tested. They can be affordable enough to do so and with their shorter than usual life span, repurchasing or trying out a new one is typically a normal thing to do. 

I’ve used my fair share of mascaras, from drug store to luxury and I can tell you that I have had more flops than good discoveries. When you wear makeup, you want it to last, you don’t want to keep checking your face just in case something has gone out of whack. I find that eyeliners and mascaras are the biggest culprits of disrupting your look and it’s a real hassle to have to keep on wiping smudges above or under your eyes or picking off flecks of mascara off your face. I adore pandas but I do not want my eyes to look like theirs!

For these reasons and more, I wanted to share four mascaras which are tried and tested and which I can always rely on, even through sweat, exercise and humidity. I also look for length, volume and lift (yes I want it all!) with mascaras so you will notice that some of these brushes have a similar shape. If you’re interested in hearing about which ones they are, please keep on reading!

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 🙂

Milk Makeup Kush Mascara

Milk Makeup Kush Mascara
Milk Makeup Kush Mascara

Price: 

$11.44 USD from ebay* (4ml travel size).  Milk makeup isn’t available for direct purchase in Australia but it’s sold in Sephora in the US and their website.

Claims:

It claims to nourish the lashes with the addition of cannabis oil and create a strong curl and intense volume with it’s heart shaped fibres. 

Why I like it:

  • Doesn’t smudge
  • Doesn’t flake
  • Adds significant volume and curl
  • Lasts through moderate exercise and sweat
Milk Makeup Kush Mascara
Milk Makeup Kush Mascara

The brush is a bit large for my eye and the since the wand is shorter on this mini size, it requires a bit more care in application. Other than that, I really like it and would consider purchasing the full size if I had direct access to it. With the conversion and ebay, it would get pretty pricey. Something else to note is that the packaging is sleek but is also quite weighty. 

ISEHAN – Kiss Me Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara – Super Waterproof

ISEHAN - Kiss Me Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara
ISEHAN – Kiss Me Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara

Price: 

$14.66 AUD from yesstyle.com*

Claims: 

from yesstyle.com

Waterproof mascara coats eyelashes thoroughly for a volumizing effect that truly mesmerizes. Curl lasts all day and without smudging. 

Why I like it:

  • Doesn’t smudge
  • Doesn’t flake
  • Adds significant volume and curl + some lengthening
  • Totally bulletproof – Lasts through intense exercise and sweat
  • Waterproof
ISEHAN - Kiss Me Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara
ISEHAN – Kiss Me Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara

The cone shape of the brush makes it quick and easy to coat the lashes. It never clumps up, making it easy to apply a second coat. This is the most bulletproof mascara out of the four and is also the cheapest. I’ve tried the line’s Long & Curl Mascara (reviewed here), which I enjoyed for lengthening, but I think I like this one more because of the volume. Overall been very impressed with the brand’s mascaras. Even though it claims to be super waterproof, it still comes off with an oil cleanser with no dramas.

MAC Extended Play Gigablack Lash

MAC Extended Play Gigablack Lash
MAC Extended Play Gigablack Lash

Price:

$35 from Mac Cosmetics (Myer)

Claims:

from maccosmetics.com.au

Sweat- and humidity-resistant
Ophthalmologist tested
Safe for contact lens wearers
Safe for sensitive eyes
Features a lightweight formula
Lifting
Defining
Flake-proof and smudge-proof
Long-wearing, 16 hours
Features a carbon black formula

Why I like it:

  • Doesn’t smudge
  • Doesn’t flake
  • Separates and defines lashes, the effect is more natural but still makes an impact
  • Totally bulletproof – Lasts through intense exercise and sweat
MAC Extended Play Gigablack Lash
MAC Extended Play Gigablack Lash

The slim brush is just right for my short lashes, it coats every lash evenly quickly and easily. I wear contact lenses on a daily basis and true to its claims, it never irritates my eyes. It truly is a reliable mascara if I wanted a more natural but still “put together” look. 

Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara

Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara
Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara

Price:

This was free in my Mecca Beauty Loop 3 box but the travel size can be purchased from Mecca Maxima and Mecca Cosmetica for $20 AUD or the full size for $42 AUD.

Claims:

from mecca.com.au

  • This unique and gentle formula delivers length, volume and sky-high lift for extreme lashes in an instant
  • The innovative 4DAmplifier™ brush features two sides: a dense bristled side to give volume, and a shorter bristled side to coat bottom lashes without smudging
  • The ultra black formula is smooth and buildable, delivering 400% more volume in 1 stroke

Why I like it:

  • Doesn’t smudge
  • Doesn’t flake
  • Adds volume, lifts and lengthens lashes. Nothing intense but the result is fluttery and defined lashes. 
  • Bulletproof – Lasts through intense exercise and sweat
Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara
Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara

This is another fuss free mascara (I’m sounding like a broken record I know!) which I can quickly apply and know that it will last and not give me any issues. There was lots of hype when this launched so I was skeptical but proven wrong. The effect I would say is similar to the Mac Extended Play but a little more lifting. Spending $42 is a bit much for something you would throw out in 3-4 months so if you are looking to try it, I recommend buying the travel size first.

Have you tried any of these mascaras? What are your go-to’s when it comes to reliable/bulletproof mascaras? I’m always looking to try more 🙂

[Review] Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense SPF 50+/PA+++ – Is it worth it?

I’ve tried and reviewed quite a few cushion foundations in the past year or so and always still keen to try more. More lines are releasing more shades, which is really good to see, so they are more accessible for different skin tones.

I really liked Sulwhasoo’s Perfecting Cushion (reviewed here), so when people started talking about the Intense version, I was intrigued. It took me awhile to pick this up since it was very expensive and I was procrastinating for the most part.

I’ve used my first cushion (it comes with a refill) until the point where I’ve had to flip it over (if you’re an avid cushion user, you can relate I’m sure), so if you’re interested in hearing my thoughts on this cushion, please keep on reading 🙂

Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense
Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense

Claims

Source: https://us.sulwhasoo.com

An anti-aging cushion that helps your skin look firmer and younger with a healthy glow.

The precious Red Pine extract in Sulwhasoo’s Timetreasure line delivers powerful anti-aging benefits for firmer-looking skin.

This cushion features anti-oxidizing properties of plum blossom extract and help your skin look healthy and youthful.

Created with Sulwhasoo’s unique technology, Radiance Pearl Powder Complex helps provide your skin a bright and radiant glow. 

As I’m in my mid thirties, anything with anti ageing and firming claims would peak my interest. I didn’t know the benefits of red pine at first, there’s a heap of information on their website on how it’s sourced and it’s anti-aging properties.

Red Pine, a symbol of longevity, is known to live a thousand years. Sulwhasoo discovered Red Pine’s anti-aging component De-aging Active (DAA), which is found in a minuscule amount deep inside Red Pine leaves.

I haven’t used any skincare from their Timetreasure line, because it’s crazy expensive, so it’s a great to see that Sulwhasoo have added their premium ingredients into this cushion. It makes buying it a little more justifiable.

Korean cushions are renowned to have a glowy finish and this is no different. It does make my skin look glowy and healthy, true to it’s claims.

Ingredients:

Source: https://us.sulwhasoo.com

WATER , CYCLOPENTASILOXANE , ZINC OXIDE (CI 77947) , TITANIUM DIOXIDE (CI 77891) , GLYCERIN , PHENYL TRIMETHICONE , ETHYLHEXYL METHOXYCINNAMATE , BUTYLENE GLYCOL DICAPRYLATE/DICAPRATE , PEG-10 DIMETHICONE , CYCLOHEXASILOXANE , NIACINAMIDE , TREHALOSE , LAURYL PEG-9 POLYDIMETHYLSILOXYETHYL DIMETHICONE , RICINUS COMMUNIS (CASTOR) SEED OIL , BUTYLENE GLYCOL , ACRYLATES/ETHYLHEXYL ACRYLATE/DIMETHICONE METHACRYLATE COPOLYMER , PROPANEDIOL , GLYCYRRHIZA URALENSIS (LICORICE) ROOT EXTRACT , TRIMETHYLSILOXYSILICATE , METHYL METHACRYLATE CROSSPOLYMER , ALUMINUM HYDROXIDE , NELUMBO NUCIFERA FLOWER EXTRACT , REHMANNIA GLUTINOSA ROOT EXTRACT , PAEONIA ALBIFLORA ROOT EXTRACT , POLYGONATUM OFFICINALE RHIZOME/ROOT EXTRACT , LILIUM CANDIDUM BULB EXTRACT , SODIUM CHLORIDE , STEARIC ACID , TRIETHOXYCAPRYLYLSILANE , DISTEARDIMONIUM HECTORITE , HYDROGENATED CASTOR OIL , POLYSORBATE 80 , HONEY , HYDROGENATED LECITHIN , BEESWAX , ETHYLHEXYLGLYCERIN , ADENOSINE , METHOXY PEG-114/POLYEPSILON CAPROLACTONE , COPERNICIA CERIFERA (CARNAUBA) WAX , PINUS SYLVESTRIS LEAF EXTRACT , PRUNUS MUME FLOWER EXTRACT , MICA (CI 77019) , TIN OXIDE , PHENOXYETHANOL , IRON OXIDES (CI 77492) , IRON OXIDES (CI 77491) , IRON OXIDES (CI 77499) , FRAGRANCE.

There is a slight scent, smells a bit “foundationy”, but it’s not strong and not the least bit offensive. The smell dissipates once it’s applied anyway.

Packaging:

The sponge cushion is housed in a typical cushion case but the packaging is what differentiates, making it pretty special. The gold edging and the shell-like cover with dark brown hues, gives it a premium feel. The base of the case is matte black. It feels sturdy and expensive.

Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense
Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense – Beautiful, elegant packaging

Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense
Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense

Shade:

#25 Deep Beige (matches me perfectly). This shade leans yellow/warm so perfect for my skin tone.

Color range:

7 colours, up to #33.

Seven shades designed to give you a more natural and healthy-looking skin tone, with both pink undertones for a youthful glow or yellow undertones to help neutralize dullness.

Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense
Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Intense – Shade #25 Deep Beige

Lasting power:

Around 8hrs with powder. If you have dry skin, you probably won’t need to powder.

Coverage:

Light to medium, buildable. I always use an airpuff for application.

Cost:

$110 AUD (with refill) from yesstyle.com *

Final thoughts:

Rating: 4/5 (really liked it!)

As mentioned, the finish of this cushion is glowy, the coverage is buildable to a solid medium and I really like that it (like most korean cushions) is infused with skincare, specifically in the anti ageing category.

If you have any imperfections that you want to cover, you will need to use concealer and powder over those spots as well, just like with any other medium coverage foundation. Speaking of powdering, with my combo skin, I generally just powder the t-zone. I haven’t worn this in the Aussie summer yet so not sure how well it would last in sweltering temps but it lasted well during autumn and winter for me.

So did this live up to my expectations and should you rush out and buy it? It’s a really good cushion and I really like it for all the reasons I’ve mentioned. Even though it does come with a refill, it is still quite expensive and this is where I don’t know if it’s really worth it. I already have a comprehensive skin care routine so having skin care in makeup is a nice plus but it isn’t a must for me. This would be very comparable to the YSL Fusion Ink Cushion Foundation (reviewed here) in terms of finish, price and wear time. But the YSL cushion is even more expensive because you don’t even get a refill. I would buy this again over the YSL.

I would say, that if you are a fan of cushion foundations, and you want to try a Sulwhasoo cushion and you like a glowy finish to your base, I would say that you wouldn’t be disappointed with this one. The Perfecting cushion has more of a satin finish and has slightly better coverage and is a bit cheaper so it’s just a matter of preference.

Have you tried this cushion yet? Let me know if you have any questions, more than happy to help 🙂

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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