Friday, 31 October 2014

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween everyone! 
Halloween isn't really a Polish speciality, but this year we've decided to join in the fun, so tonight we're turning into a ghoulish family, which we are anyway. If the results of our mascarade are presentable, some photostory will follow. 
For the time being I'm enjoying my pumpkin spice afternoon coffe, with my own spice blend which I now store in my brand new, purpose-made jar.
Click here  if you want to make a cute jar like the one below yourselves.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Sally Hansen Insta-dri #350 Wined Up review

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri line of nail polishes is unavailable in Poland, so when I saw this one in TK Maxx, I grabbed it, mostly to see what the formula is like and whether it dries as quickly as the top coat from the same line.
The shade I picked is #350 Wined Up, which is right up my alley, but very dupable. There are at least 3 other almost identical polishes in my collection. This is a warm, autumnal burgundy shade with high golden shimmer.
The formula is thick, yet not hard to apply. The wide, flat brush coats the entire nail in a stroke or two. One coat is fully opaque and dries very quickly. It's not as shiny as I like, so I tend to add a high-gloss top coat.

I was really impressed by the quality of the polish, my only regret was that it was so dupable, but when I wore it for 2 days I noticed the weirdest kind of chipping. The polish started falling off at the cuticle, not on the tips, where the signs of wear and tear are most noticeable. What's more the polish chipped the same way on my toes where it normally stays for ages. I have no explanation for this phenomenon and I'm highly disappointed with the quality of the polish.

Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Korean goodies: Memebox Special #42 OMG 3, #43 K-Style 3 and Superbox #61 My Cute Wishlist 3 collective unboxing

Today I'd like to review a whole bundle of Memeboxes which I ordered after my excitement following getting My Cute Wishlist 1 and OMG 2. I must say that that was the last time I'd ordered any of these boxes as the quality of them is deteriorating from box to box and I found them highly frustrating. 
Wait a second, I lied. There's one more of these boxes coming up, but that was ordered much earlier. Anyway. I'm not getting any more of these for sure. 

The first one is the smallest one of the pile. Upon opening my Memebox Special #43 K-Style 3 looked empty, but it actually contained 6 full size make-up products which are obviously smaller and more lightweight than face and body care. The items inside aren't bad by any means, but kind of dull and not unique and the shade range didn't appeal to my taste.

1. Secret Kiss Face Fit Strobe Cream is clearly a dupe of MAC Srtobe cream, though I can't compare the two simply because I don't own the MAC one. This is a liquid highlighter with pearl sheen. I actually like very much how it highlights the chosen areas of your face without being greasy. Can be mixes with foundations or BB/CC creams, used under or over make-up. Doesn't seem to accentuate my pores.

2. Vella Flower Flower BB is obviously a deluxe sample of a very nice BB cream. I really like its consistency and neutral beige colour, even though it's a bit too light for my skin now. Unfortunately it offers no oil control and my oily skin doesn't seem to take it very well. Looks good and fresh under my eyes, though.

3. I would have been way more excited by Tonymoly & Days Tattoo Eyebrow 02 Dark Brown if I hadn't received a very similar product in my brow box. 
I've just read the instruction and realised I was applying it wrong. I'm supposed to put it on 1-2 hours before bedtime and this claims to stay on for about a week. 
Applied in the morning this lasts all day and washes off when I remove my make-up. I like the dark brown shade which matches my hair colour pretty well.

4. Style Y Soft Mix & Match Pencil and Powder Shadow in  02 Brown Liner and Peach Tip is an interesting concept of a combo consisting of a bronze brown liner and a shimmery peachy eyeshadow. I don't like peachy eyeshadows, but the liner is really nice.
I have already received a similar product by that brand in my brow box. 

5. Style Y Color Fit Creamy Lip & Cheek in 02 Smoothie Pink is actually a very nice product. I haven't used it on my lips as it seems too light and dry, but it's a very pretty liquid blush. Blends really easily and offers very natural and long lasting matte cheek colour. 

And finally 6. Color World Jewellish Stick Shadow in Twinkle Green is not my shade at all. It's a sheer, shimmery yellowish olive colour. Gave this to my mum who seems to enjoy it.

The second box in my pyramid was the one I had very high expectations for. I loved My Cute Wishlist 1, missed the second edition and grabbed the third one, which turned out to be a laughing stock of the Memebox fans community. Not without a reason. This box was meant to stun us with cute packaging, but scared us with the ugliness of one object and disappointed with lack if fantasy and imagination of others.  

1. Hope Girl Tinted Lip Balm in Love Peach. Meh. Neither the packaging, the colour nor the product itself is particularly exciting.

2. Shara Shara Fairy's Make-up Synergy Sun Cream SPF 45 PA++ is the winner of the scariest beauty product in the world. This disgusting packaging made my 4-year-old son gasp, but I found it highly repulsive. There's a very thin line between gimmick and crap, you know.
I also thought the packaging was defective as it took well over 200 pumps for the product to appear. I even started wondering whether I should ask for replacement or perhaps getting another 'fairy' would freak me out. 
Luckily the product itself seems really nice. 

3. ddung Family Foam Cleansing Cream, mine comes in 02 Milky. Not terribly exciting, but I'll use this up one day. The brand name is a major fail, though.

4. Shara Shara Kissing Sugar Lip Scrub is the only product I like. I haven't opened it yet, but I'm a sucker for tin packaging and I find this one particulatly cute. I'm also a big fan of lip scrubs, especially the sugar ones, so this one is right up my alley. The blurb says it contains honey extracts, avocado oil, argan spinosa kernel oil etc to soften and nourish the lips while scrubbingthem with sugar and walnut shell particles. 

5. Youngwoosa Oh! It's Lovely and Soft Cream appealed to me neither with its infantile packaging nor with the description. It's just a moisturiser in a plastic tub. It's already found a new owner. 

6. Tonymoly Red Cheeks Girl's Patch is the most useless product in the box for my skin type. I have very consistently oily skin and my cheeks aren't in need of moisture relief. I like sheet masks to deliver moisture and nutrition to my entire face, and see no point in applying these small circles right on the apples of my cheeks. 
Is the packaging cute? Well if an image of Red Riding Hood on blister packaging is cute, then yes, it's cute.

And finally the best value box of the bunch. For the second time in a row the OMG box delivered the best quality products of the trio. Even though there are only 5 products, I found almost all of them interesting and useful. 

The description of On the Body Makgeolli Soap is so elaborate that I'll simply quote it straight from the card:

Hard soaps aren't really my pair of shoes, but I feel strongly encouraged to try this one out. Seems like nothing I've used before.

2. Cleomee Three-Layer Perfume Donkey Oil Mist is a perfumed body oils that comes with a spray pump. I love the scent, the 3-layer concept and how lightweight and moisturising this is. Not a fan of the spray, though. Makes bathroom floor greasy and treacherously slippery. 

3. Migabee Bee Venom & Honey Cream contains bee venom (botox?) royal jelly, propolis and honey. Like all Korean creams provides moisture and rejuvenation, treats lines and wrinkles. I've already got a face scrub or mask from the same brand so I'll be happy to pair the two.

4. Tonymoly Delight Tint Crayon #06 Neon Pink is the only product I'm not terribly fond of. I've got tons of similar products and the shade is too bright and pink for my liking. 

5. Tosowoong Platinum Pore Tightening Pack is exactly what I need. This is a face mask, packed with platinum gold powder and tea tree oil that promises to purify the skin and tighten pores. Wear for 15 minutes and rinse.

Monday, 27 October 2014

Korean goodies: Shara Shara Black Charcoal Purifying Mask review

Every Memebox has to come with a sheet mask. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I like them all, but find it hard to see much difference between them, even though the descriptions say different things. 
But this Shara Shara Black Charcoal Purifying Mask really did stand out of the crowd, just because it was black!
I put it on as soon as I got it and couldn't help lauging. This looked like some weird SM or Batman outfit. Made my kids run away scared and Mr Hubby roar with laughter. This is the immeasurable benefit that's not mentioned in the leaflet. I wonder why. Laughter is just as healthy as charcoal and algae. I just couldn't resist posting my picture wearing thisjust  to share the all the goodness that comes from laughter.
 According to the leaflet this mask contains high concentrates of charcoal powder and volcanic ash to clear the skin of impurities, dirt, sebum and unclog the pores. It also soothes the skin with wine and aloe vera.

In practice, the essence this mask is soaked with is clear, with no particles of ash and no tint. If it hadn't beed for the sheet's colour, I wouldn't have noticed this was a charcoal mask. In a blind test I would describe this mask as just as highly moisturising as all other sheet masks I've used and leaving my face moist and supple, slightly tacky at first. But the cleansing and unclogging result was nowhere to be found.
What I liked about the mask was that the sheet itself was made of thicker fabric and the size was more appropriate for my face than usual, which made this mask more comfortable to wear.

It's a nice mask, if I were looking for a nice moisturising mask, this one would probably be my first pick, but if I were judging it on the basis of  how well it fulfilled the claims, it would have to be a total fail.  

Sunday, 26 October 2014

The worst lipstick in the world: Make-up Revolution Velvet Lip Laquer in Keep Trying rant

I rarely rant. I believe that even if something doesn't work for me, it might serve others well and there's no need to discredit them. However, there are products so bad that I feel obliged to warn others and prevent them from wasting their money.

Make-up Revolution is a cheap drugstore brand that specialises in  dupes of higher-end products. Their eyeshadows and blushes are clearly meant to imitate the infamous eyeshadows and blushes by such brands as Too Faced and Urban Decay, all for a ridiculous fraction of the price.
I'd read some enthusiastic reviews of their products so I hauled a couple of their products to see what they're like. The eyeshadows turned out to be very decent, but their dry lipstick turned out to be the second worst dry lipstick in the history.

Salvation Velvet Lip Laquer in the shade Keep Trying is a bright red liquid lipstick that comes in a cheap-looking plastic tube with gold print. It has a standard doe-foot applicator that distributes the product evenly and without any effort. The product is super opaque and one thin coat covers the lips perfectly. The lipstick looks glossy at first but soon it dries to a matte finish. Sounds good, so far, doesn't it?  

The problems start about 15 minutes later. At first the lipstick starts to feel very, very dry on the lips. I would compare the feeling to chalk on the lips. This uncomfortable feeling induced me to lick and smack my lips, at which point I noticed my lipstick peeling in the most horrid way. You would never believe how happy I was to have tried the lipstick without leaving the house. Parading with my lips looking like in the pictures below would have scared people around me and it wasn't the time for Halloween yet!  

This lipstick was cheap, but not THAT cheap. This makes me feel I've wasted my money on this horrible stuff. I tried this lipstick a couple of times to see if I was doing something wrong, whether I should moisturise my lips beforehand or perhaps keep them dry. The result was always the same. 
The only reason why this lipstick hasn't landed in the bin yet is that I'm keeping it for my monthly faves and fails. This is an epic fail. 

Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Korean goodies: Skin 1004 Foam Foam Cleanser Morning & Night review

I got this Skin 1004 Foam Foam Cleanser Morning & Night in my Memebox Superbox #28 Free From Oil & Trouble 3 and have been using them ever since, which is at least 2 months now.

This foam cleanser represents a very interesting skincare concept of having two different cleansers to match different skin needs in the morning and before going to bed. At night time you need a stronger cleansing formula to remove all impurities and traces of make up than in the morning. Cleansing in the morning is important not only for oily skin, when you wake up with your face all greasy and stuff, but for everyone as during the sleep your skin producrs toxins that need to be removed from its surface.

The Foam Foam morning cleanser contains argan seed oil and edelweiss extracts to cleanse your skin without dehydrating. The night one has a stronger formula to remove inpurities and declog pores, it's also enriched with lotus and lavender extracts. 

Both cleansers have nice, not particularly strong fragrance, produce rich foam that dissolves all impurities well. Neither of them seems to strip my skin of moisture but both are incredibly effective at keeping my face cleansed. The thing is that if I were doing a blind test the only difference between these two would be what they look like, the morning one is pearlescent and the night one is a clear gel. I don't notice any difference in what they make my skin feel, but perhaps there is some as far as active ingredients are concerned.

Anyway, the lack of clear difference between these is the only drawback of this product. I really love how Korean foam cleansers work on my skin and these are no exception. 

Friday, 24 October 2014

Caudalie Beauty Elixir review

I've recently become obsessed with face mists. I never thought it appropriate to use them but since this year's summer I've been using them on bare skin, as the first stage of my skincare, over make up, during the day when the need arises or just because I feel like spritzing my face with something. 

Caudalie Beauty Elixir represents a much higher price tag than the mists I've used so far, but the difference in quality is immediately noticeable, though there are a number of issues which can make this product a controversial one. 
First of all, this is the only mist I've used that can actually be called a mist. All the others were spritzes. The pump distributes such incredibly fine mist which feels weightless on the skin, doesn't make it dripping wet, absorbs instantly. It's a great pleasure to use. 
Now comes the controversial bit. This product has a very strong fragrance. Very strong. It's comparable to perfume, lingers on for hours on clothes. So beware. I don't mind perfumed cosmetics but I'm not normally a fan of herbal fragrances as they often have this medicinal twist, but this patricular concoction is actually very nice. Mint, camphor and rosemary are the dominant notes. The perfume is 100% natural. 

The second thing is that the ingredients mentioned above tend to be serious irritants for sensitive skin. Nothing has ever happened to mine, but there's this strong tingling sensation that makes me quite uneasy. 

And finally, the product is alcohol based. My skin reacts well to alcohol, but I know that many have problems with that. But what I'd really like to attract your attention to is the fact that alcohol is marked as an ingredient of plant origin. I don't know how to comment upon this. It seems to me that alcohol is generally of plant origin and here we're tricked into believing that it's some kind of organic alcohol, though the word organic is never mentioned.

Having read this review you might be under the impression that I didn't like the product. You couldn't be more wrong. If I'd based my opinion on my subjective impression, resulting from the pleasure of using this product, it would  have received an enthusiastic review. Investigating the list of ingredients spoilt the feeling a bit, but I'm going to repurchase for sure because this is the best mist I've used so far.

Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.