July Favorites: Beauty etc

Hello welcome back, finally I’m getting around to doing a favorites! I skipped June because honestly I was grasping at straws with regards to things I wanted to talk about, so I couldn’t really consider any of them “favorites”.

I actually had quite a lot to talk about this month! I narrowed it down to some things that have REALLY been impressing me.

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First up is the MAC 187 brush. It’s a large duofibre stippling brush. I have actually had this brush for over a year – Ray bought it for me at my request from MAC in the Guam international airport when he was moving to Australia. I used it a couple of times and kinda didn’t really “get” it. I think I was using it to apply powder? I just read that it was a popular brush so I bought it. I stopped using it and didn’t pick it up again, until recently when my friend mentioned that she gets her base flawless by using stippling techniques.

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A “duofibre” brush is one where there are two kinds of bristles quite defined from each other. In this case, and most cases, the black bristles really have no function apart from holding the white bristles straight and up because lemme tell you those white bristles are SOFT and extremely flexible. So the reason I’ve been loving this little baby lately is for applying a more natural base. The light, soft bristles just seem to really move the product around on my face in a gentle, sheer way rather than the more full coverage application of a buffing brush, EFB or flat topped kabuki that is my usual preferred method. So if you’re looking for a luxe purchase for a natural finish, give this qt a try, you won’t regret it! It’s $42 from MAC USA and …$85 in Australia?!?!!? COME ON MAC that is RIDICULOUS. Now I remember why I had Ray pick it up for me. Hmph.

Next up we have the moisturizer that’s been saving my skin. Well, maybe not, who knows really but it is at least not breaking me out, and my skin is great (for me) at the moment. I feel like when I don’t wear makeup my skin is just comfortable almost all day, then as per normal it’s a little oily at the end of the day because that’s just how my skin is – no big deal.. Anyway it’s the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Lotion. It’s light and almost a gel/cream in consistency so it sinks in really rapidly and I’m just in love with it.

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First Aid Beauty is a brand that is formulated especially for sensitive skin which is why I felt safe buying it. I bought the travel size but it is massive, to the point where I worry that they sent me the wrong size.. And how big is the normal size? This will take me months to get through and I will happily repurchase, it just does what it says on the pack, nothing more nothing less and that’s really what I wanted. You can pick up this size forĀ  $7.50 from Sephora and there’s obviously bigger sizes there too, or in Australia from Adore Beauty for .. wait they only have the Ultra Repair Cream which is a bit heavy for me (at least in summer – in winter I may need it!) so you can grab it from BeautyBay for about $30 (for the larger size!). BeautyBay is a UK site but they do free (slow, IME) shipping to Australia. Sweet!

A favorite for the month that needs little introduction is the Urban Decay Naked Smoky palette.

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I’ve already done a post on it so I’m not going to really go into it here but I think it’s absolutely wonderful and I don’t regret buying it at all! I just want to creepily stroke the gorgeous packaging allll the livelong day. Sigh…

Anyway ahem. Where were we… oh yes. Things that are good.

I bought the most gorgeous candles from a cute little website called PF Candle Co this month! Well I only bought one but they sent me another little tealight sample size of another one.

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I bought the scent “Amber & Moss” because it sounded interesting, and I was right, it is really interesting! It’s kind of .. earthy and .. herby.. with a lemon edge? I don’t know how to describe scents clearly but it’s just really different and I love it. It is not overpowering in the small space either, it just gives a very light fragrance and the amber glass jars give a really lovely warm light as well. I got the mini size for this which is still decently sized, and has about a 20 hour burn time. I’m going to obviously repurpose the jars! The minis are $11 and the larger size ones are $18. Explore the range here! PS. I may or may not have three more scents to try on the way.. I couldn’t help it!

When I went to Sephora in Montreal, I had my makeup done by a lovely man by the name of Matthew and the lip color he used on me rocked my world so much I went back the next day and bought it. It was Marc Jacobs New Nudes in Role Play and it’s soooo gorgeous.

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The consistency is so creamy and moisturising but not sticky at all. It’s a satin finish so not gloss or matte – somewhere in between. The packaging is glorious – there’s a magnetic snap lid and the sleek, oval container with minimalist logo is super classy. I always feel very fancy when applying this! On the website it’s called a “sheer lip gel” and I don’t know that I’d really agree with that, it’s still a decent amount of pigmentation and though it’s smoother than your usual lipstick it’s not a gel consistency in any sense of the word IMO.

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The color is a gorgeous blush/pink/nude – a very MLBB color for me but perhaps a little more pink on other people…

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They’re kinda pricey at $30 from Sephora or maybe even Sephora in Australia as well but WHO COULD KNOW because even though it says there’s MJ products there, it’s impossible to know whether they have this exact thing. Get online shopping already you twats. Ugh!

I know we already talked about the Boscia Makeup Breakup Cool Cleansing Oil but too bad, I’m talking about it again because it frickin owns.

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It’s a really liquidy oil that spreads super easily and works really fast to remove ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL your makeup. It’s seriously amazing. It leaves my skin feeling so soft, but doesn’t leave any residue. I have been using this almost every day and I will be buying the full size when I finish my mini size. The mini is $10 from Sephora (it’s still a decent size – will take me a couple of months to get through) and the larger size is $28 so pretty reasonable – not available in Australia as far as I can tell though. Sorry team!

The last item is one I’m still trialling because the full size product is pricey and I’ve been burned before.. it’s the Nude Skincare Progenius Omega Treatment Rescue Oil.

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Sephora has this in both small sample form and in deluxe sample form at the moment and I’m going to be pretty dodgy and order several times before it inevitably runs out I think so I can really make sure it works for my skin. But I will say this – it smells AMAZING and feels really good massaged into the skin. Come to think of it, I’ve been using it for a couple of weeks now and my skin is looking pretty great. The scent reminds me of the Clarins Lotus Oil which is a classic and something I used for many years. It’s herby and fresh and I really like it. Nude Skincare seems generally pretty awesome tbh, I look forward to trying more of their stuff. It’s $68 here in the States at Sephora and in Australia you should be able to get it soon at Mecca Cosmetica – it’s pretty new here so I assume it will make its way to Australia on the usual majestic sea-turtle drawn chariot that always seems to cart the best products to Australia.. that’s the only way I can explain how long things take to get there. Hello companies, pls be informed that planes exist. I know you don’t want to put the sea turtles out of a job but look they have a lot of other skills and… ugh forget it (thanks to Mem for helping me build that metaphor).

Ok so that’s that, I’m going to try to do another post on Monday after my trip to Albany for the Sephora VIB Rouge (I MADE IT) closed-door event. Wheeeeee!

Have a great weekend loves.

Love+++
F&V

Playtime Wednesday: Mineral Makeup, Black Liner, Lipstick and Unboxings..

This is going to be a bit of a mishmash!

A couple of weeks back, one of my lovely friends, Evelyn, who created Mineralis Cosmetics – an indie makeup brand based in the UK, asked if she could send me some of her products. I told her that would be lovely, as long as it was okay with her that I was 100% honest in my blog. Evelyn happily agreed, she has a lot of faith in her products.

With good reason. They arrived this week and I used them the next day for a full day of work. Evelyn sent 2 shades in case I needed to mix them and a translucent powder in a gorgeous little purple drawstring bag. Cutest!

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Mineral makeup has always been a bit of a mystery to me. I don’t get it. It’s just a powder? How does it work? Do you just dust it on? Do you mix it with water (yes, I literally thought this)? Evelyn patiently explained that I should apply it with a flat topped brush, after applying a dusting of the translucent powder in my oilier areas. So that’s what I did. I used no primer, just some moisturizer which I put on half an hour before I applied the makeup. I mixed the two shades together, which gave the perfect shade (well done Evelyn!). I dusted a little translucent powder again over the top. I used no concealer at all. Below is a picture of the freshly applied makeup and the 6pm appearance – no touchups.

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Different light – sorry! I tried!

There’s a totally normal amount of shine on my nose and the makeup has absorbed into my face a little bit but again that’s totally normal – my face likes to eat makeup. Even the absolute best and longest wearing makeup would be failing by that point. My t-zone is oily and makeup is not infallible despite what L’Oreal likes to tell us!

I played again today this time just adding a little bit of under-eye concealer before I put the foundation on. I did a before and after so you can see the amount of coverage with just a single “layer” application. Not bad for ground up rocks, huh?

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Before and after mineral makeup application

I’m going to keep trying this stuff out and seeing how it goes. So far I’m super impressed. These foundations are 6GBP which is drugstore prices for a great quality product. The translucent powder is 6.5GBP and you only need such a little bit, it’s a bargain. I really recommend checking Mineralis out! Link in first paragraph.

I decided after that that I’d play with the Maybelline Kajal black liner. I hardly ever line my entire eyes anymore, so as not to make my eyes look smaller. I then used a pencil brush to smudge everything out. Fun!

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Wow such dark so mystery

Then I dug around in my lipstick collection and re-discovered MAC’s “All Fired Up” retro-matte lipstick. This lipstick is SO MATTE that I sometimes find it hard to wear, which is why it doesn’t get pulled out very often. But the color is great so I put a bunch of balm on, waited a bit then applied the lipstick and it’s wearing really nicely so far.

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I mean look at this color. It’s like a light, pinkyish red. I blurred out the edges with a q-tip, I’ve been into that lately, just to make the edges a little less stark.

I got my BoxyCharm today which was, tbh, kinda disappointing. It’s meant to be a luxury box and maybe it is but the only exciting thing to me is the Oscar Blandi silk serum. I waited all damn month (they billed me on the 1st of June) for this?!

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Ipsy was way better and half the price. But I might just be saying that because the Ipsy bag came with a brow pencil by IT Cosmetics which is a brand I like. It’s a great pencil too! I don’t like the nail polish though. I disagree with the “gel effect” claim, it chipped like less than 24 hours after wearing it.

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Anyway that’s my Wednesday of playing around and trying things out, and revisiting some favorites. I hope yours was nice! Have a great week, readers.

Love+++
F&V