Friday, 21 November 2014

First Impressions - Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat - B10

Hello Princesses!

Today I'm going to be talking about Yves Saint Laurent's Le Teint Touche Éclat foundation in B10! I tried out the Youth Liberator Foundation previously and found it to be a bit too dark, so the YSL counter ladies suggested that I try this foundation instead!
What Does It Do?
For the first time, the magic light of Touche Éclat is in a foundation. Infused in a weightless fluid, Touche Éclat foundation targets shadowy areas and highlights the contours of the face. With buildable coverage and free of opaque fillers, this foundation's perfecting texture evens the complexion and helps conceal imperfections, enhancing your skin's natural beauty. Available in 17 shades with SPF19 broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection." (1)

The colour of this foundation is quite good for my fair skin, albeit a little dark. This is mostly because the foundation is quite sheer, and my face is naturally darker than the rest of my body. It's quite warm toned, so if you have cool toned skin then you can try the BD10 shade!
Ok so this photo looks like a mugshot, I'm totally aware (resting bitch face syndrome hits me hard) but it shows the coverage of the foundation the best! You can still see the freckles on my nose, pores on my cheeks and acne on my chin, but it covers my redness, gives my skin a very healthy looking glow and just generally makes it look like really healthy skin. 
It's a lot lighter in colour than the Youth Liberator and a lot thinner in texture.
Final Thoughts?
I really like this foundation! It's great for days where I don't want to cake the foundation on but still want to look presentable in a hurry! It's actually quite similar to a BB Cream in the sense that it's quite lightweight yet buildable, but doesn't have very many skincare benefits or high SPF so it's kinda different and that means I need it, even though it's expensive ... right? ^.^

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Review - Etude House Perfect Brow Kit (No.01 Natural Brown)

Hello Princesses!

Today I'm going to be talking about the Etude House - Perfect Brow Kit in No.01 Natural Brown! I purchased this little eyebrow compact around this time last year from Roseroseshop for $9USD (although it's down to $7USD now! This has been my go-to brow set since I purchased it, because it comes with almost everything I need to create natural yet defined brows on the go! ^.^
As with everything from Etude House - the Perfect Brow Kit comes in absolutely gorgeous outer packaging, although I do find the actual product packaging quite boring in comparison to the cardboard box. It's very functional and easy to keep clean though!
There are no English instructions on the packaging, but from what the website and pictures suggest these are their steps

1; Use spooley to groom brow surface
2; Use wide brush to gather and apply colour to brow hairs along direction of natural hair growth
3; Use angled brush to define and extend colour to brow edges and tips
4; Use wide brush to gather and apply highlighter to brow edges and tips  
These little brushes are absolutely miniature! You can see a comparison of the brushes to my pinkie finger and it always gives me the giggles because it looks like I have a really massive pinkie finger! The brow kit comes with a super finely milled shimmery highlight, a warm medium coloured brown and a cool dark brown. I use both of these browns for my brows and I also use them to contour my eyes! The highlighter is absolutely gorgeous and fits my pale skin like a little dream. It is obviously very pale, so if you have a darker complexion this my a look a little bright and chalky. Even though this brow kit is "Natural brown" the dark brown is actually quite dark, so definitely not suitable for light eyebrows.
I use the warm coloured brown to fill in the start of my brow, then the cool coloured dark brown to fill in the rest of the brow. I have very dark eyebrow hairs but they are quite sparse, so filling in my brows is definitely a must for me!
I also use the brow kit to contour my eyes! The brow powder isn't as easy to blend as a regular shadow, but in a pinch it's totally workable. I use the warm brown to define my crease, the cool brown to enhance my Aegyo Sal (eye bags), and the brow highlight to brighten up my inner eye. I bumped up the contrast a little so you can actually see the contour as I usually do it very subtly! I'm also trialling some new prescription lenses from GEO - what do you think of them?

I very rarely use the little mini angled brush that come with the palette because it's very very stiff! It still works fine, but it's just not very pleasant to use. On the other hand, the little wide brush on the other side of the angled brush is absolutely lovely to use, super soft and picks up and transfers the colour so well!

What I Love
- Perfect colours for my complexion
- Great for travel (has everything I need)
- Sturdy packaging for travelling
- Multi-functional (brows and shadows!)

What I Don't Love
- Highlighter may not work well on darker complexions
- The angle brush is quite stiff (although it still works well enough)
- No brow gel (personal preference)
- Lightest colour is still quite dark
Final Thoughts
I absolutely love this little Eyebrow kit! I do wish that they had included a brow gel since I personally prefer using a brow gel with brow powder, and that the little angled brush was a little softer, but other than that I think it's a super functional little brow palette which works amazingly for traveling too! I've been using it for a whole year now and have only put a teeny dent in each of the products too, so I think it's going to last me a little while! ^.^

What's your go-to brow kit?

Monday, 17 November 2014

Manicure Monday - Botany Pants Lately?

Hello Princesses!

Today I have a very plain but cute manicure using Doctor Lacquer- Botany Plants Lately?
I'm wearing two coats of this polish over the top of a plain white polish. I'm not sure why my polish seems to have less of the chunky glitter than the gorgeous promo photos (check them out here) but I still think it looks cute all the same since all the glitters are pastel - one of my many weaknesses! ^.^

 What do you think of this polish? Too subtle, or just cute enough?

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Store Review - Gracie Lou Cosmetics

Hello Princesses!

Today I'm going to be talking about a New Zealand based beauty website called Gracie Lou Cosmetics! I've always been aware of Gracie Lou as store but never purchased from them because I can find the products that they stock cheaper elsewhere. It might sound a little mean/elitist/cheap, but if I can save $2 on a product then I will - it's just the student in me telling me to save money! ^.^ I ended up making a purchase from them because their email subscription told me that they had 25% off all Beauty Blender products and just like my student brain tells me to save money buying from cheaper sites, I just can't resist a good sale!

Website Practicality
I find the website very aesthetically pleasing and easy to navigate. There's an easily accessible search bar as well as browsing options for brands or by products. I really like that when you click into a product, there are options for product description, reviews and similar products on each product which I really like!

There are two payment options for purchasing on Gracie Lou, one being a purchase with Credit Card (hosted under DPS Payment Express) or just a regular bank deposit. It's been a while since I've had to do a bank deposit, and a little inconvenient to be honest since I'm paid through Paypal the majority of the time and that means I can't use that money just chilling out there. It's nice to see another payment method for those of us who don't have credit cards!  

Price Comparison
Gracie Lou Cosmetics haven't got the cheapest prices in New Zealand, but I do find them fair, (not like some stores that are blatantly ripping you off). This is one of the reasons I haven't shopped with Gracie Lou before, I just know I can get products cheaper elsewhere and that's literally it!

Gracie Lou Cosmetics - Beauty Blender; $38 + Shipping; $5 = $43
Beauty Bliss - Beauty Blender; $34 + Shipping; $4.50 = $38.50
Hikosencara - Beauty Blender; $32 + Shipping; $3.50 = $35.50

Since I made my purchase with 25% off, my total came to this instead;
Gracie Lou (discount) - Beauty Blender; $28.50 + Shipping; $5 = $33.50

Shipping and Packaging
The packaging was very simplistic, literally just bubble wrapped, and it came to me in a courier post baggie with the little Gracie Lou sticker on the back! The shipping cost $5NZD for flat rate shipping in New Zealand ($10 flat rate for my Aussie friends)  and if you spend over $75 you qualify for free shipping. I ordered on the 12th of November, my payment cleared and item was shipped on the 13th, and I received my package on the 14th!
I'm sure that you guys must have figured out by now that I purchased another Beauty Blender! I really really REALLY needed to buy another one because I realised recently (like the day that I ordered the new beauty blender) that my old beauty blender is 1year and 3 months old - well over the 4-6month use by date. My Beauty Blender never went mouldy because I literally wash it out every time I use it, but obviously just like regular sponges the Beauty Blender doesn't last forever and starts to deteriorate. 
My Beauty Blender came with a page of information that I already knew and a little Gracie Lou business card. It didn't come with a little invoice showing the prices and all that usual stuff which is a little weird - but considering it was all emailed to me when I purchased I guess I don't really need it since I also just usually throw it out.
This is the old photos from when I got my first ever beauty blender! The new photos were exactly the same so I just reused the old one. Electronic recycling! ^.^
Aaand this is what the old and new Beauty Blenders look like! I didn't realize how completely gross my old one looked and now I'm kind of grossed out that I've been putting that moist sponge on my face. Ick. For what it's worth - Beauty Blenders are amazing. I love them (which is why I used my one for so so long) and totally worth the money.

What I Love
- Quick shipping
- Great range of products
- Fairish pricing
- Regular sales

What I Don't Love
- Nothing!

Final Thoughts
I would definitely shop with Gracie Lou again, although I will pretty much be shopping with them during their sales since their prices are a little higher than other stores! I really like their website layout and functionality and the shipping is well priced and very fast!
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