Elizabeth Arden Beautiful Colour Moisturising lipstick: Matte Review

Finding the right shade of lipstick to suit your everyday style can become quite the hunt. Over the years I have ended up with a collection of lipsticks that I  hardly ever used because testing them out at the counter on my wrist just isn’t the same as wearing it on my lips. And I had also gone through a phase of buying lipsticks online, and when they arrive in my mailbox the colour was never true on the website. Sometimes these things, you just accept that you got it wrong and there’s no way of returning it…that shade of lipstick goes to the bottom of the make up drawer or you try to pass it off to a close friend or your younger sister.

It was nice to sit down with Stephen Gaskett, Elizabeth Arden’s national make up artist to chat about lip shades that suited my skin tone. I can hardly find the time to attend these sessions, being a busy mum and all. And I can’t honestly remember the last time I stepped into David Jones! But I’m glad I did, as the customer service at the Elizabeth Arden counter was impeccable. Don’t get intimidated by their smart dressing and perfect make up…they were absolutely lovely to chat to and so helpful too.

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From Left: Bold Red, Coral Crush, Nude

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Wearing Coral Crush on the lips

So let me introduce you to the Elizabeth Arden newest released range of matte meets moisture lipsticks, these are available in 6 wearable shades. They have a 12 hour wear, the colourhas flexible satin-pigments that make the colour look ultra smooth and velvety on the lips. The lipstick is made of natural moisturisng ingredients such as manago, shea and murumuru butters, and argan oil and vitamin E to provide antioxidant protection. When you think of long lasting, matte wear sometimes the concern of it being ‘drying’ comes to mind, but after wearing the lipstick for my belated birthday bash, the formula didn’t feel dry at all and feels very comfortable on the lips.

Of course with food and drink the lipstick naturally comes off, but generally the colour does stay on for couple of hours. I find with habit I will reapply every 3-4 hours. I was very happy with the 3 colours chosen for my skin tone, I have been wearing them daily and it’s becoming a favourite!

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At the counter, I was especially surprised to see new technology that is used in the beauty industry, such as the skin matching tool below. The make up artist took a photo of my skin’s surface and it told me which foundation shade suited me best. I was totally blown away, imagine how much money this tool could save a girl from trying 50 different shades from different brands.

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Have you tried out this new technology on your skin? What is your tip to finding the best shade of foundation and lipstick?




Review: Maybelline Better Skin Foundation

It’s nice to want everything in the foundation, for some wearing make up daily is a part of normal routine so it is a given to want a foundation to have added benefits. Personally, I wear make up 2-3 times a week when I have to go to work. Other times, I worry that wearing too much foundation will clog up my pores and send my face into a frenzy! This year, since turning 30 I realise that my face has reverted back to being more oily and prone to hormonal break outs. So I don’t really need added oil that comes from wearing foundation.

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I heard about Maybelline’s new foundation, Better Skin. The name sounds quite appealing to someone like me who wants better skin! Then again, don’t we all want nicer skin so we can feel more confident when we present ourselves to others. And I had problems with pigmentation and dull skin.

Better Skin contains Actyl-C, a vitamin formula that improve’s skin’s appearance within 3 weeks of use. It claims to evenly tone the skin, leaving it looking energised and healthy looking. It is also formulated with vitamin B5 + septonic M3, magnesium, zinc and copper to hydrate and plump the skin.

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So far in the trial, I have used the foundation for 2 weeks and have noticed an improvement in the look of my skin, it does seem a lot brighter and much healthier. The formulation is not oily either and on the bottle it says it is suited for ‘normal’ skin types. I chose the shade ‘NUDE’ because I select this shade with most of my foundations. I didn’t think it blended in as well because the colour was just too light for me. And I found that I had to wear a moisturiser or primer underneath, otherwise the result would have appeared to powdery and matte. I don’t mind the matte look, but it just felt a little on the dry side.

The pump dispenser is always nice, as it keeps the contents uncontaminated. And the cap keeps dust away. However, it as most foundation bottles it is made of glass. So always have to be mindful in the bathroom and around little hands.

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Overall it is a nice little foundation for those looking to achieve a healthier complexion. It also has SPF 14, for sun protection. A bottle of Maybelline’s Super Stay Better Skin Foundation will cost RRP$21.95. And comes in 8 different shades – Light Beige, Ivory, Cameo, Nude, Sand, Golden, Fawn, and Sun Beige.

Hope you liked the review.

Have you tried Maybelline’s Superstay Better Skin Foundation? What do you wish your foundation could do for your skin?

Don’t forget to enter The Lime Tree Bower giveaway that ends this Sunday! There are only 4 entries at the moment, so your chances are looking very good!

Happy Hump Day!


Repurchased 2013 favourites

In 2013, I discovered a lot about my skincare and make up routine that have seem to stick with me. It surprises me actually, because when I finish one product I tend to try out something else. It is very seldom that I repurchase a beauty product unless it has absolutely blown me off my feet!

So I decided to stay loyal this time, because these products made my skin happy in 2013. And I have gone and repurchased the following two in the Priceline post Christmas sales. Do you remember when they were having 40% off make up and skincare. It was the perfect time to get back these winners.

I’m sure many of those in the beauty blogging world would have come across the Bioderma Sebium makeup remover. This stuff has almost reached cult status. It simple melts the makeup away leaving the skin feeling refreshed and cleansed. Like with most make up removers I feel I have to go through a second cleanse, but this does the job first time every time!

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I couldn’t find the exact bottle on the shelves at Priceline so I went with the last of the Bioderma Crealine. And this does the exact same thing, cleanses the skin without the harsh smell of regular perfumed cleansers. This is a large 250 ml bottle too, so I wonder how long will this last me. The little one took me 6 months!

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Next, is the Revlon Nearly Naked foundation in Nude. It has SPF 20 and the coverage is light but buildable. This one has stuck with me throughout 2013 and will also be with me through 2014. I found I stopped using my Lancome Teint Idole Ultra 24 hour foundation because it was just too heavy and made me break out so I changed to Revlon’s Nearly Naked foundation instead. It has saved my hip pocket and it feels so smooth and comfortable on the skin.

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Well…I sure was a good little beauty blogger post Christmas, as I restrained myself from overspending. Sometimes these sales can trick me into buying more than I need. And then they end up at the back of the beauty cabinet! However, these two I definitely will NEED in the new year…can’t see how I will live without them.

Do you have any make up or skin care favourites that you have repurchased? What is it and how many times is your greatest repurchase?

Hope you’re all loving the short working week!


Beauty Review: NP Set Essential Brow Set

Last month I attended a make up application workshop run by NP Set Australia, it was held at my local Guardian Pharmacy which was only 5 minutes from home. The night was organised for ladies only, which included nimbles, sushi, drinks and clipboards! Yes, we were there to do our homework and learn some make up application techniques from the NP Set experts.

It went for around 2 hours, which involved a demonstration on how to use the NP products and an introduction to how to turn a day make up look into a  night one. The  group was relatively small, around 15 attendees. And I was quite pleased about how there was a mix of ages ranging from 19 to 80+. It was great because I felt the NP Set catered for everyone. And the NP set ladies were so gracious to provide advice individually at the end of the night. I felt that my questions were being answered based on the areas I wanted to know more about and they helped me to pick the right products for my face.

I left with a few goodies that I purchased on the night, which were a NP Set Essential Brow Set, a pore minimizing primer, a blending brush and eye shadow (duo applicator) brush.

I was mostly intrigued with the Brow Kit, I just want to achieve darker and more prominent brows. There’s something about dark brows, that makes a woman sexy and powerful I say! And so here are some photos of me playing with this NP Set kit.

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I really like the packaging of the NP Set. It is clean, white and simple. People often ask what is the difference between the NP set and Napoleon Perdis. Years ago I would buy Napoleon Perdis, but now I find NP Set would suit my lifestyle better. The obvious reason  is the prices and the professional quality. The NP Set would suit those who are interested in applying make up everyday with minimal fuss and want to look great day in and day out. The Napoleon Perdis range (usually found in dark blue packaging) is more suited for those practicing make up or offering professional make up services and it is a bit more expensive too.

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The NP Set Essential Brow Set includes a duo applicator with slanted brush heads, a set of tweezers and three palettes. The first on the left is a light brown colour (subtle brow), the middle is a darker brown (glam brow) and lastly, the shaping wax.

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This is me with my ‘naked’ brows. I try to colour in my brows whenever I head out of the house, because I find the natural colour of my eye brows aren’t dark enough…they appear almost grey or silver! It makes me look older than my age and my face also appears more washed out than it already is. They say that a dark and thicker brow can make your face appear slimmer and I really believe that!

First thing to do is to tweeze the shape of your brow. Making sure you don’t tweeze too much, as the hairs on the eyebrow can take longer to grow back and can become less dense. The set comes with a mini tweezer, but I hardly use it, it doesn’t do the job of holding onto the hair very well. But I’ll hang on to it in the case for emergencies only! You can tweeze a rounded or squared shape on the inner corner depending on what you like. I think my natural shape is rounded so I draw on a rounded brow.

I like to mix the two shades of brown together using the applicator brush and tapping off the excess so it doesn’t appear too harsh. Then with gentle stroke I swipe it along the hairs to allow the colour to stick.

If I use only the light brown shade it is too light, and the glam brow is just too dark. I like how they have included the shaping wax, it helps me keep any stray hairs in place and helps to keep the colour intact throughout the day.

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The finished result looks quite natural, I love how it makes my eyes appear larger! Plus it matches the colour of my hair which is also an important tip. Darker may sound better, but if you have very light or blonde hair you may want to test out the light brown first.

The NP Set Essential Brow Set  has become a staple for me, I use it everyday!

And a set will cost AUD$29.00. You can shop NP set online or at Target, Big W, Guardian Pharmacy stores.

Have you tried NP Set Products before? Does the appearance of your brows worry you?


*This post is not sponsored. I bought the NP Set Essential Brow set myself.