Thursday, 13 July 2017

Moisturiser/Foundation Combos that Work

Or perhaps, more importantly - some that don't.

I struggle with remembering the combinations of moisturiser/foundation that work for me. Sometimes, I'll wash my face, moisturise, leave it a few minutes to sink in and then apply foundation and discover the foundation goes all dotty (that's the only way I can think to describe it!) on my face, of the moisturiser and foundation start balling up together and looking like they're peeling away. Other times (and this is how I know it's not all me!) everything just looks good.

Where I've reviewed a product, the product is linked to the review. Updated as I go, most recent first.

Also - please note that this is not about individual products being good or bad - it's about how they work together on MY skin. Some products I LOVE (for example, Clarins Beauty Flash) but if they don't work together they'll still get filed under 'bad'!

July 2017

BAD

L'Oreal Revitalift (day) + Revlon ColorStay
L'Oreal Revitalift (day) + Nivea Express Hydration Primer + Revlon ColorStay
Clarins Beauty Flash + Revlon ColorStay

GOOD

Olive Skincare Day + Revlon ColorStay

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Monday, 1 May 2017

Natralus Paw Paw Skin Therapy

2017-05-01_04-20-28 Last year I was lucky enough to win a stack of Natralus Paw Paw products from Leah at Temporary Princess. I received three sizes of the Natralus daily skin therapy product. I immediately gave (the smallest) one to a friend of mine who was about to head off on holiday. She loved it so much that it was all used up by the time she got back. So as I hadn't touched the product yet, I gave her the large tube, leaving me with the medium size (75g).

We've been using this for a while on various bits of dry skin on Master 6 but I haven't had any occasion to use it on myself. Until last week when I came down with a cold. After 2 days in bed, one of which was spent blowing my nose non-stop, I needed some serious moisture and hydration to clear up the very flaky red nose I'd acquired!

A great opportunity to give this paw paw cream a try! It's very subtly scented (shea butter) - I love this because it means it doesn't smell horrible (my usual complaint about 'unscented' products) but it doesn't cause you to sneeze when you slather it all over your nose (or make you smell like cake batter - my complaint about products with shea butter).

My nose was rather red and sore and the first application really really really stung. Ouch! But I toughened up and made it through the stinging. The second application a few hours later stung a lot less and by day 2 it didn't sting at all. More importantly, it worked really quickly.

The redness subsided after the first application and subsequent applications worked quickly to soften up all the dry skin that was furiously shedding off my nose.

I was really lucky because the ferocious nose-blowing part of my cold only lasted a couple of days. I started with the Natralus after the blowing had stopped, so it had to repair, rather than repair and protect. If you are still blowing your nose - expect it to sting!

What's in it? The first two ingredients are aloe vera and paw paw, followed by glycerin and soybean oil. The first ingredient I didn't readily recognise was octyl palmitate, which is a derivative of palm oil and is used to adjust products' consistency (it's organic, so it's used instead of various silicones).

The product is free-from petroleum-derived ingredients, parabens, silicons, mineral oil-derived products and artificial fragrance and colour.

Better yet - the product is Australian owned and made! In fact, Natralus is based in Mt Barker in beautiful South Australia!

Packaging has changed since my product - you can see the new look here.

The products are widely available - a list of stockists is on the site and South Australians are (unsurprisingly) well served. You can expect to pay around $10 for the 75g tube.

Would I buy this product again? You bet!

And, of course I am joining Ingrid's Monday Madness Makeup link on Fabulous and Fun Life!

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Tuesday, 25 April 2017

TRANSFORMULAS Miracle Daily Glycol Cleanser

2017-04-25_08-18-07 I picked up this Transformulas cleanser at Priceline when on sale. It was one of those brain fade moments. I had ZERO need of a cleanser but only realised that after I'd got it home, unwrapped it and had a go using it.

This product shows how much of a sucker I am for clever wording. Miracle? Yes please! Glycol? Sounds like it includes glycolic acid and will smooth out my skin.

Woot all round.

And then I used it. It's really pretty - pale blue, pearlescent and you need only the tiniest amount (seriously, it lasts FOREVER) - it foams up really easily. It's not heavily scented which makes me happy.

But wow - my skin was feeling a little tight, a little dry after using it. So that's when I read the ingredients. Maybe one day I'll read ingredients lists before purchase ... still waiting for that to happen though.

Obviously the first ingredient is water and next ... sodium laureth sulphate. For crying out loud - it's a detergent and surfactant (so that's why it foams up so nicely) and it's a cheap one at that! It's basically like soap. For sure, it cleans but I know from past experience with very cheap cleansers, it has the potential to dry out my skin like nobody's business.

Next up on the ingredients list is sodium cocoamphoacetate - more surfactant, foam-boosting goodness (ahem) here but derived from coconut oil and recognised as gentler.

Fortunately for me, glycerin is fourth and I know how well my skin gets along with it. This meant that I was actually able to use this cleanser once a day and not have it knacker my skin. Every now and then I'd get a small patch of dry skin but nothing serious.

This isn't a cheap cleanser - normal price is $35 for 100mL. It does last for a long time so you do get good bang for buck, and, as it's stocked by Priceline, you will be able to pick it up on sale (as I write it's discounted by 30%).

As always - your mileage may well vary. My skin seems to be quite sensitive to drying out and Barbe over at Fashionista in Suburbia tried out a range of Transformulas products and really liked this cleanser.

Would I buy it again? No, but I would consider other products in the range.

I'm adding this post to Ingrid's Monday Madness Makeup Link.

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Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Onsen Basic Series Smoothing Eye Serum

2017-04-19_08-33-25 I bought this Onsen Eye Serum quite a while ago from OzSale* and it cost me $28. I bought it after I'd bought something else, so I did get free shipping - always a bonus! I'd seen the Onsen products a few times and had wanted to try them (for no good reason other than something new and different!).

Obviously, OzSale's price is heavily discounted - a similar product on OnsenSecret will set you back over $US200!

[UPDATE - I think I was originally comparing to the wrong product and that the usual retail on this product is more like $US100.]

The first thing I noticed about this product was the ridiculously large packaging. My 25mL of eye serum comes in a receptacle which is LONGER than my mobile phone! I compared it against several other products lying around my bathroom and trust me - the packaging is insane.

You might think that this isn't much more than a cosmetic issue, but in reality, what it means is that about day 2 into using this product and you start to struggle to get eye serum out. I've had to prop it up for AGES now. It's very frustrating and, on that alone, it would put me off buying it again.

To be honest, things didn't improve when I started using it. The serum has the slick texture that many of the blur creams have. That's because (according to the back label) its main ingredients are cyclopentosiloxane and dimethicone. Both of these are silicones that aid in spreading and act as barriers (they repel water) and conditioners, and also have the property of filling in fine lines. That's why they're used in the various blur creams. And, in an eye cream, they'll give it the appearance of doing something - but they're not exactly active ingredients. Ingredient number three is collagen, so there's some plumping and moisturising (and presumably it's trapped in by the barrier-like silicones) but again - not so much in terms of anti-aging action.

I had a chat to my beautician about the silicone-heavy ingredients list and she couldn't really understand it - except that perhaps the idea is to trap the moisturising ingredients against the skin.

Either way, I didn't see any change or improvement in my eyes while using this product (OK - I didn't take before or after photos - I'm going to do that with my next product which is currently on its way to me!). That, combined with my dislike of the slick silicone texture and the ludicrous packaging, means that I most definitely was NOT in love with this product.

I might give other Onsen products a go in future (provided I can pick them up cheaply AND can suss out the ingredients list prior to purchase ... if I remember!) but ...

Would I buy this product again? NO.

This post is part of Ingrid's Monday Madness Makeup Link Up over on Fabulous & Fun Life.

* referral link

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Saturday, 8 April 2017

Movie Review: Peppa Pig: My First Cinema Experience



OK - Master 6 is perhaps a touch old for Peppa Pig and definitely already been to the cinema at least once before. When I won a family pass for the new Peppa Pig movie, his initial reaction was 'BORING'. However, when I suggested that if that were the case we might like to give it away, his tune changed mighty fast!

He picked a friend to take along, I (hesitantly, at first!) sorted the logistics and so, last Sunday,we headed off to the cinema. First thing (well, 11am) on a Sunday morning is a GREAT time to go to the movies - easy to park and no one around! I think there were about 4 other people in our cinema.

Peppa Pig: My First Cinema Experience is actually 4 all-new (yes, Andy - ALL NEW - you haven't seen any of them before!) episodes. Peppa and family visit Kylie Kangaroo, meet a koala, surf etc etc. No departure from the usual Peppa script there!

For some reason, someone decided that the episodes needed stitching together (for want of a better phrase) by introducing some live action. So as the film opens, we meet Daisy - Peppa's human friend - who, along with puppets of Peppa and George - invites the audience to sing and shout and join in. It was unbelievably saccharine and because the cinema was empty, the interactive element totally fell flat. While I was cringing and wishing they'd just get on with the animation, the two six year olds were cheerfully shouting and fidgeting away.

Despite the incongruity of people and puppets, the Peppa episodes are exactly what you'd expect, so Peppa fans will be happy.

At the end of the show, I asked Master 6 what his favourite part had been. You wouldn't believe it. It was the live action parts. 'Because it was something new and different and I haven't seen it before'.

So that just goes to show why I don't work in children's programming!

Recommended for: well, apparently six year old boys will enjoy this movie if you can get them there. It's undoubtedly aimed at a slightly younger set and I think children of all ages will enjoy it more if it's a busy cinema!

Thanks to Westfield Marion for running the competition.

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Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Avon Ultra Glazewear Lip Gloss

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A friend of mine was having a clear out of her (rather excessive) collection of beauty and skin care products and I snaffled a load of stuff. Woohoo!

Although I need more lipgloss like a hole in the head, I couldn't help myself but grab a few. At least it is something that I do actually routinely wear.

The Avon Ultra Glazewear is just fantastic. It has a relatively subtle, fruity scent and, even though it's quite thick, it's not at all tacky once it goes on. It delivers fantastic colour - because it's thick you can get good, dense colour but you can also smooth it out to be a bit more subtle. I'm not sure my lip shots do the colour justice, but I think the swatch shot shows it better.

The colour I have is Pink Watermelon which is quite sparkly. You might feel differently about this - but because I will often wear lip gloss and nothing else (er, makeup wise), I feel it adds a bit of polish to an otherwise very unfinished look.

A final flourish is that the colour lasts well. And it's easy to touch up - the applicator is a traditionally shaped sponge tip.

Regular price is $14.99 but on sale now on the Avon AU site for $6. That's a bargain. Get on it - you won't be disappointed.

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Monday, 15 August 2016

A Little Rant

For the last 16 months (ish) I've rented some co-working space near to my son's school. It's been really handy and has seen my productivity spike. Because I've been paying for the space, I've been using it and it's meant that on at least one occasion (if not more) I've been able to take on extra work, just because I am so much more focussed here than when I'm at home.

In this time, I think I've been late with my rent once (school holidays, thank you very much). Despite having my own desk and an office that locks, it's often not felt like my space. The woman who oversees the whole office is a bit inclined to fuss around with art work and shift things around and I'm kind of ok with that (I wasn't so ok the day I came in and found a connector from some equipment that's on loan to me jammed between my desk and the wall ... but hey, nothing was broken). I've had office mates come and go. I've moved offices. I've had things shuffled around so that when space suddenly becomes available things can be photographed to look better. I think and hope I've been a pretty good tenant.

I'm currently sharing a large room with an architect and there's space for a third person. We had a third person for a while. I wasn't allowed to put my whiteboard where I wanted it because this  new person wanted to bring a bookshelf. Anyway, she decided she didn't like sharing with two people so moved to another room to share with one (the previous second tenant on that room had bailed 2 days before taking occupancy ...).

So what is ostensibly a spare desk has been advertised on gumtree for a while. Last Thursday, an architect rocked up to see the space. He was happy and said he'd take it. At the time, he met his two new roomies.

On Friday, he got in touch with the coordinator of all of this and said he wanted the whole room and offered her loads of cash. She accepted. This happened around lunch time. Just as I was leaving for school pick up, she told me I no longer had a space.

So now ... I'm in my two weeks notice.

And I'm not happy. Sure - our agreement is two weeks notice - that part I don't have a problem with. But she could have come and talked to me as soon as she knew instead of cowardly waiting until I was leaving.

In fact, if she'd come to me and said "actually, I really need more rent for the room and I'd like to advertise it as share or sole occupancy" I'd have been ok.

I'm also ticked off at this new architect. The ad was clear it was a share space and he's just come along and gone 'I want' without any consideration for the people already working there.

I'm also ticked off I've been given my marching orders when it's highly unlikely she's seen any money from this guy. Given the somewhat rotating door nature of tenants in the last 16 months, you'd have thought that someone quiet and chilled out, who pays their bills, would go a long way.

But apparently no.

I guess it's just a reminder that in business, as in life, we should treat others as we'd like to be treated.

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