Beauty Bits I’ve Been Loving

I use all of these things.. on a good day

SKIN

Elizabeth Arden 8hr Cream – Lip Protect: I got this in the airport (as you do) recently as a very ‘it was on the paying counter’ purchase. But I am so glad I did. I have noticed that working in an air conditioned office really does a number on my lips and this stuff has been a moisturising lifesaver. Bonus, its smells and tastes like grapefruit.

Swisse Argan Oil Moisturiser – I got this moisturiser mainly because I wanted a change. Plus, winter dried out my skin worse than ever. Lets just say. Best choice ever. I will not be saving this only for winter as it is now my all year round moisturiser! It just leaves my skin feeling so soft, even when ive been wearing makeup all day. During Spring & Summer I don’t think ill be wearing this during the day as it would be too heavy, but as a night time moisturiser, its a dream.

Kiehls Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado – I recently turned 25 and as such. The eye cream has come out. Not yet the wrinkle cream but knowing my genes, should probably get on to that too. Fine lines are the worst and whether they are only in my imagination or not, I shall begin to treat/ prevent them. This cream goes on great under makeup and is super hydrating. It can take a few mins to soak in but its def worth the wait. I do sometimes use this under my makeup too which works fine!

HAIR

La Bang Body Hair Oil – Now, I know, I gave in to the hype. Its the one all of the Australian Youtubers and Instagramers are talking about and guess what. They are right. Its not a con. I am not being paid to say this!

I generally leave this in all day if I can (If I am bumming around the house and not seeing actual people) and wash it out before bed. i have found since using this that I have less split ends and my hair does take longer to feel dry and frizzy. Which for me, is a revelation.

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Tea Tree oil Shampoo – For me this is a more natural alternative to my medicated shampoo. Now, it doesn’t work the same but it does keep me tied over for that little bit longer than if I weren’t to use it at all which is good. Because it is tea tree based it is also antibacterial and I find it takes my hair longer to become oily.

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Garnier Leave in Oil – As someone who has the driest of dry hair and is living with a constant frizzy nightmare. I need a hair oil that will be softening without weighing it down. This tends to do this. But only if I use it on first day hair.

I am thinking about trying out a leave in conditioner. Let me know if you have any recommendations.

MAKEUP

Collection Mascara –  I am a sucker for collection makeup and as they do not sell it in Australia, I try and top up on my favs while im in NZ. However, I thought while I was at the counter that I would try something new. This is where I discovered my new fav mascara! Its lengthening, separating and quite dry formula so basically everything I love.

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Topshop Lip Liner (in Ceramic) & Lipstick (in Naturist) Combo –  I never thought I would rate TopShop makeup highly. When I saw the collection I wasn’t too wowed, but at the time it was all on special, so why not. This happened to be a great idea because the Lip Liner and Lipstick i got are fantastic. The colour is my perfect everyday colour. My only con is that it doesn’t last THAT long. A few coffees in and you have to reapply. But it reapplies fine so for me, no issue!

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E.L.F. Cosmetics, Blush, Candid Coral – This particular purchase seemed to slip into my overloaded Iherb (discount code: RAC8923) order last minute and when it arrived, I was quite disappointed. I saw the colour and thought straight away. NOPE. However, I tried it and was quite impressed! It is definitely quite subtle, but it is buildable which is the main reason I enjoy it. Its almost impossible to overdo it. Its a peachy pink colour and has a slight shimmer. Perf for Spring!

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Nars Laguna – I remember when I first bought this bronzer, it was all because of the hype. I got it… and never touched it. I was too scared! I wasn’t confident doing my makeup and couldnt believe I had bought this product I couldnt use as it was really pricey!

However, I used it as a way to make myself learn. I wanted to be able to use it to its full potential. Voila! I have. Its now my fav bronser by far and works really well as a contour shade on my skintone. Unfortunately, I have hit pan, so will be looking for alternatives so that I dont run out!

NYX Micro Brow eyebrow pencil – When I was in Spain, I discovered that NYX and Kiko, Have their own stores!! The most I had ever seen was a ratehr big counter in Priceline, I was blown away and decided I HAD to buy something.

Fortunately, I had infact forgotten to pack my beloved Benefit Eyebrow Pencil so was in a position to justify a new one and I am SO glad I did because its now my new fav. Not only is the tip really small and easy to use, its less than half the price of the benefit one!! Although I have never tried the ABH one, I feel as though this would be a good dupe too. Seriously, try it.

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What have your favourite products been recently?

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A Mini Beauty Haul & Mecca20 Review

Sale Season & Vouchers makes for a good time

Unless you have been living under a rock, you would have heard about the big birthday celebration Mecca is having for its 20th Birthday!
I managed to find a quiet-ish time and go in and have a squizz around and omg I was not disappointed! So many of your (and my) favourite brands have teamed up with Mecca to come out with some AHmazing Limited Edition Products, Sample Packs and Travel essentials as well as some Mecca Only Limited Edition product shades! There really is a range for almost anybody with prices from $20 to $424 (unfortunately not in my budget).
I didn’t go crazy and only picked up two things but I really could have gone crazy. Here’s what I got…

SKINCARE

ORIGINS – MECCA20 Mini Mask Trio – $41.00 

Travel/ Trial Sizes of (50ml):
Containing Out Of Trouble 10 Min Mask (50ml), Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask (50ml), Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask (50ml),

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I was SO excited when I saw this pack that I just picked it up and put it in my basket without thinking. Considering these mini face masks alone are over $20 I thought it was a pretty good bargain!

Soap & Glory – Hand Food (50ml)- $4.00 or the 125ml for $9 

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Ain’t gonna lie. The minis at the front counter got me I was in need of a new hand cream for work so picked this up and OMG it smells like H E A V E N. Honestly. The best way I can discribe the smell is ‘Lime Fruju’ – (you know, the iceblock). But they describe it as Sweet Lime & Vanilla. Which I guess is pretty much a Fruju.

MAKEUP

This also comes as a set option which includes:
Limited Edition Colour of Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick, full size Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner, and mini Huge Extreme Lash Mascara – $67
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You know that cute paper that Mecca tends to wrap your #giftstoyourself in? Well that’s the best way I can describe the colour of this. It is beautiful. Completely mylipsbutbetter.

My other top picks from the MECCA20 Collection:

Luckily I had a voucher which I used to buy some of this but otherwise, it really didn’t break the bank! I love a good bargain & a good mini. I will be testing these products out over the next lil while so keep an eye on this space.

Thats it for now! In the meantime you can find me on Instagram and here, Facebook and Twitter.

Sukin Loves’

Everyone needs great skincare  

General Products

Skincare is one of those things where, once you find the right products for you, its hard to try anything else as you fear it will either break you out or make your skin freak out in general.

I am now that person. I struggle to bring myself to try anything other than Sukin because I know it works for my skin. There are many reasons I love this brand but mainly because its more natural than some other brands available, it is free from Parabens and Sulphates, the range of products is huge (Minis’!!!) and its really affordable, especially when they have specials!

FACE SCRUBS

I use a range of the face scrubs from Sukin. Partly because I wanted them all and partly because I wanted to see the difference between them. My favourite of the three is still the original (Middle of photo). I use this probably 5 or 6 times a week. Now I know some might say that is excessive but it is just what my skin likes and I notice a difference in the surface of my skin and my makeup application if I haven’t used it. The other 2 I only use occasionally or when my skin needs a little extra.

 Scrubs

MOISTURISERS

I believe moisturising your face is the ONE step that everybody should be doing everyday. Whether your skin is oily, dry, normal or combo – you need to moisturise! The 2 moisturisers I love from Sukin are the ‘ Facial Moisturiser’ and the ‘ Replenishing Night Cream’. I find that when I use these 2 products everyday my skin looks its best. When I don’t, Hello Dry Patches.

FOAMING FACIAL CLEANSER

 This is a new discovery of mine. I don’t use this everyday as I find foaming cleansers can dry out my face if I use them too often. However I maybe use this once a week when I need a quick fix to clogging and removing texture and it works really well. If I have a bit more time I will spend time masking instead.

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DETOXIFYING AND MASKING

On days where I feel as though my skin needs a little bit more love and I have time, I choose to use the Detoxifying Mask followed by the scrub. May seem a bit excessive? Yeah probably! But afterwards my skin always feels so refreshed, looks a lot brighter and feels all kinds of clean! I really recommend the Detoxifying Super Greens range from Sukin.

Super Greens

All in all. I love trying new skincare products here and there but if there is one brand I know I can always go back to, or use when other things mess my skin up, Sukin is it! I am really looking forward to trying more of the range when I can justify it next! 😀

**DISCLAIMER – The products in these photos are well used and loved so may look kinda gross lol**

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L’Oreal Skin Expert Pure Clay Mask | Review

Masking is one of my favourite pasttimes

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It’s not often that I use a product and can say after the first use that I absolutely love it. But this, is one of those things! By far one of the best face masks I have used recently and, its affordable!! (Currently on Special for AUD$12.69 at Chemist Warehouse).

When I first saw this is in the pharmacy I grabbed it and put it in my basket without a second thought. As this range is fairly new and not very reviewed yet I thought I would give it a go before I am washed with preconceived ideas – and why not write the beginning of this post while it’s currently sucking the life out of my pores!

CLAIMS
Detoxifying and Brightening  

FIRST IMPRESSION

It is heavily scented. But not in a bad way, but in a way that you are glad its only on your face for 15 odd minutes because you really want to get the smell away from your nose.

APPLICATION

I just applied it with my good ol’ fingers. Usually with clay masks I would use a dedicated brush but this one seemed like an okay texture to use my fingers… and it was such a dream to put on.

Thoughts I had whilst it was on my face. Tight after about 5 minutes but not uncomfortable.

WASHING OFF PROCESS

I chose to use a warm washcloth and water to remove it as this is how I would normally take off any clay mask and it worked great. Did not require much tugging at all at my skin to get it off and my face was completely clean after a few minutes.

AFTER THOUGHTS

Skin almost instantly looking really clean and bright – Check. Skin also felt a little dry afterwards but really not that bad. The next day my skin looks amazing. Very fresh and almost radiant looking (If I must say so myself).

OVERALL

Great for if you are wanting a new mask to try that is affordable and actually does more than just make your face look ridiculous for 15 minutes! I will definitely be going out to repurchase the other 2 masks in the range!

Have you tried this mask? Let me know your thoughts!

x

Current Skincare Must-haves

After deciding recently that I was not too happy with the state of my skin, I did some research and purchased a few new (to me) skincare items, which may I add, have become some of my all time favourites!

Now don’t get me wrong, I know just as much as the next person that the clarity of your skin is not only what gets put on, but also how your skin is nourished from the inside. So alongside this current skincare routine, I have also been (trying to*) drinking 2+ litres of water a day, eating as many greens as possible as well as cutting out a lot of the ‘notsogood’ foods.

With these products however, I have noticed such a difference in the texture, plumpness, and brightness of my skin.

  • Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+ ($29.95 AUD (30ml)

I have used this oil for about 2 years now, I love it and highly recommend it for everyone. I drench my entire face (about 5 drops) in this oil almost every night as I find my face is always moisturised, brightened and plump the morning after. I have also noticed it has helped reduce the appearance of the scar on my forehead – Bonus!

  • Manuka Doctor – ApiClear Purifying Facial Peel 100ml ($36 NZD)

I use this mask when my skin is feeling gross and congested. It is a peel off mask which means it does take around 20 minutes to dry and can hurt a little when being removed, but it is worth it. It definitely does a great job at pulling all the gunk out of my pores and my skin is always very smooth and soft afterwards.  *Tip – I would advise using a toner or tightening mask afterwards though as it does tend to open your pores when the gunk has been removed – do not want any nasties getting back in there right when it has just been cleared out 🙂

  • Sukin Revitalising Facial Scrub 125mL ($7 – $10NZD/AUD)

This is my everyday go-to facial scrub. Its not too harsh and is a very creamy consistency with small beads. I use this scrub every night before my oils and I find it really does make my skin so soft and radiant and leaves my skin feeling clean, but not that ‘tight’ clean feeling that some scrubs and cleansers give you.  Its also a bonus that it is super affordable!

  • Trilogy – Rosapene Night Cream ($44.95 AUD (60ml)

I have very recently nearly finished the first tube of this magical cream (sigh) and I am going to have to repurchase this for myself as an early xmas present! Not only is this cream so very nourishing before bed, I have also found that on days that my skin is feeling a bit dehydrated, putting this under my makeup works wonders.

  • Estee Lauder – Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II ($95.00 AUD 30ml)

I first tried this serum as a tester which I received in a goodie pack. It is one of those ‘holy grail’ products you hear about from every other beauty blogger. Its a product I really didn’t want to love as it is rather pricey! But, alas. I love it. It works wonders on dry spots of skin as well as giving you a beautiful glow the day after. I put this on right before bed as it sinks in within a few seconds! Bonus! I have put this last as it is my go to. ITS AMAZING. If you can get a saple to see if it works for you I highly recommend!

I would love to hear about your favourite skincare products currently, is there anything you would highly recommend?

Much love, Tracy.

Clinique – Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm

May I introduce you to: The Clinique Take The Day Off Balm – Cleanser.

This baby was introduced to me by a friend whilst on holiday in July this year… and as soon as I tried it I was hooked and had to have it in my life.

It is not the cheapest of cleansers, don’t get me wrong, this was a luxury purchase for me as I do not regularly spend much on skincare, especially a cleanser. But after trying it I decided that on the way home, in Duty Free, I would treat myself. (You can buy it at Farmers in NZ, or, it is $55.00 from http://nz.strawberrynet.com/skincare/clinique/take-the-day-off-cleansing-balm/51612/?langBox=nz)

http://nz.strawberrynet.com/skincare/clinique/take-the-day-off-cleansing-balm/51612/?langBox=nz Clinique Take The Day Off Balm - Cleanser
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Clinique Take The Day Off Balm – Cleanser

How it works:

1. (Face of Makeup) Get about 2 pea sized amounts of the balm out of the tub and rub into face using your fingers. Really get in there and smudge it all around.

2. Them move onto eyes. Rub into mascara (even waterproof) and just rub gently back and forth, you will be amazed at how well it get ALL of your eye make-up off so easily.

3. (Optional) Wet fingers and go over your face, it will turn into a milky consistency, but like a said, this is optional, I tend to just go onto step 4.

4. Wet a facecloth with HOT water, as hot as you can handle to be put on your face and gently wipe off the balm and with that, your make up.

That is it. It may take a bit longer than washing your face normally, but these steps will get it ALL off in one go. Its so easy and rather refreshing. It doesn’t leave an oily residue on your face which is a big plus! This cleansing balm has made me want to try other Clinique skincare, if only it wasn’t so expensive!

As I have not tried other cleansing balms, I an not recommend a dupe or cheaper alternative. If you know of one, PLEASE ; let me know! 🙂

Shopping |I-herb Haul

I do confess, I am addicted to I Herb! (www.iherb.com)

This is a site I discovered which sells all sorts of things from healthy food to beauty to cleaning products! A lot of which are Organic.

There were a few things I knew I needed and wanted to repurchase and a few things I really wanted to try out! So this is what I ordered:

The coconut sugar, brown rice pasta and cacao nibs were repurchases, these are fantastic and healthy! I use the coconut sugar as a replacement for normal sugar in many things and the cacao nibs as a treat on top of Greek yoghurt with berries.

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The pastas are great! I use them to replace normal pasta and I can not taste the difference!

The tea I have been wanting to try for a while, so I grabbed the mango infused green and also got 3 samples of other teas from the brand to try as well!

As many people who know me well know, I am addicted to YouTube. Shaaanxo had convinced me I needed to get the Real techniques sponge as it is a good Dupe for the Beauty Blender and she also convinced me to get the under eye setting powder which I am excited to try! ( I may do reviews on these products at a later date)

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The other things I got were just impulse buys, so I will see how they get on 🙂

Much love

Tracy