Monday, 29 February 2016

EOTD: bhcosmetics Take Me To Brazil Blue & Red...

TOTALLY missed the boat this month for EOTD's - didn't even post enough to hold my usual EOTM giveaway! But it'll still happen - I'll make something up  Meanwhile, I'm kick-starting tomorrow's March with this weird and whacky look...

If you scroll down the page, you'll see it was created to go with my T-shirt. Didn't have a suitable orange/red shadow in the kit, and thought I'd get away with using a Rimmel Exaggerate Lip Liner in Call Me Crazy (bright orange) along the lashline, with the clearest red from the Take Me To Brazil palette over the top. Turned out a little too reddish for my liking, but as usual, I ran out of time to make any adjustments. On the rest of the lid, my base was Eye of Horus Scarab Sapphire Goddess Pencil, with the deepest blue from the same TMTB palette over the top and along the lower lashline, and the EOH blue pencil on the waterline...


Foundation was Mirenesse Liquid Silk, cheeks were Maybelline Master Glaze Blush Stick in Coral Me In dusted with my BRIGHTEST orange blush - Bonfire from the Sleek Flame Blush by 3 palette. One of the few times I've ever worn it because it's just so amazingly pigmented. Love the hue, and it turns out to be totally wearable so long as you're not too heavy handed with the application. Lips were Australis Velourlips Matte Lip Cream in Sanfran-Disco - I'm quite besotted with these, and will review them soon (with swatches)   


And of course, the jewellery...


Hope you have a wonderful start to Autumn, and that your Leap Year day was a special one - next giveaway will be up soon 

Take care of you,
kats xxx

Sunday, 28 February 2016

REVIEW: Garnier Olia Permanent Hair Colour - Best in Beauty 2015

I first tried Garnier Olia Permanent Hair Colour when it was released in 2013, and loved it - with no ammonia, no stinky smell, and a high oil content, this was the home dyeing kit I'd been waiting for. My penchant for fire engine red hair got the better of me though, and with only one clear red in the range that was too dark for me, I switched back to my usual brand. But then a box of Olia Very Light Blonde(!) arrived in my beautyheaven Best in Beauty 2015 prize pack, and it started me thinking...

...time for a change - how about a new lighter colour? And as fate would have it, another part of the BIB prize got me there quite by chance (you can read about it here), and in the space of one afternoon, I became a copper babe. Well it just so happens that there's a stunning copper in the Olia range (7.40 Intense Copper), and that's one of the products I'm using to keep my new tresses looking fresh and vital...


I used the copper to dye my white roots, and then experimented with mixing the Very Light Blonde with what was left of the copper concotion, and applied it all over for 10 minutes - turned out to be just the ticket to prevent the ends turning out too dark or orangey, and both roots and lengths were blended with no tide mark - woo hoo! I've done this combo twice now, and it's perfect  Who new? 

Anyways I'm thrilled to be back in Olia land, and I bet my scalp is breathing a sigh of relief. This really is a gentle yet effective option for home dyers - everything you need is in the kit, it's super easy to apply (with no drips), it smells fresh and florally, and leaves my hair even softer and more manageable than before...


Here's the blurb from the box, front and back...


The instructions are a snap to follow, and the whole process takes me 45 minutes max.  There's also a perforated circle on the back of the pack which you punch out, and it holds the mixer bottle steady while you're dispensing the developer cream and the colourant - clever. You can bet I'll be stocking up whenever I see this range on special, which seem to be fairly often at Coles 

Do you colour your hair at home, and if so, have you tried Garnier Olia?

Take care of you,
kats xxx

P.S. I've linked this post to Ingrid's Monday Makeup Madness Link Up Party 

Saturday, 27 February 2016

REVIEW: bebe Love EDP...

Another of my blind-buy fragrance adventures - bebe Love EDP. Half price at Chemist Warehouse mid last year - while there was no tester, I thought it was the cutest bottle, and with a name like "Love", I figured it couldn't possibly be offensive. Turned out to be a gem of a scent, and I just haven't gotten around to reviewing it till now. (If you're wondering what's in the pipeline for the coming months, I have five more perfumes lined up on the "to be done" shelf in my blogging HQ!) 


I'd seen this SO many times in the store, picked it up and put it down again, dismissing it as a cheapie probably best avoided. Well it just goes to show how wrong impressions can be - this fragrance is really quite beautiful, and I can still smell it on my skin 5 hours later 

It's a sweet, slightly fruity floral, and notes include Sicilian Lemon, Pink Freesia, Red Currant, Gardenia, Cyclamen, Wild Raspberry and Guava, sitting on a base of White Amber, Cedar and Musk. Released for Valentine's Day in 2014 by the US fashion retailer (of the same name), it's a fun, flirty and 100% girly fragrance that I tend to wear with more casual outfits, and often give myself a hearty spritz before retiring. It's soft and fresh, and to my nose the gardenia is the standout. Research reveals it first came out in 2013 in a really tacky heart shaped bottle with a rhinestone heart charm dangling from the cap - so glad they revised their packaging as this bottle is curvaceously feminine, and I love the overall "infinity" theme...
It's not going to win any awards or become a classic, but for around $10, it's a sweetheart of a fragrance, and I would buy it again - the longevity alone leaves a lot of other EDP's (that are triple the price) for dead, and this handy 30ml size takes up so little space in my bag 

Take care of you,
kats xxx

Friday, 26 February 2016

EOTD: Kat Von D Black Milk & Lunar Lights...

I love surprises, and nothing gives me greater pleasure than writing off something as bleah, only to fall in love with it later on. And that's what's happened with silvers & greys. I've hardly even worn these hues throughout my life - always considered them to be somewhat dull and dreary, and my beauty book always told me that silver was only meant for highlighting. But since lightening my hair, I've been having a play and re-testing all my combos, and these "colourless" shades are now appearing on my bench almost every week...


They're actually quite flattering, and like the colours of the rainbows, I'm discovering there are many variations, and these two from the Kat Von D Chrysalis palette are becoming firm favourites. For this look I stroked on essence White Kajal close to the lashline, and then patted down Lunar Lights, which is almost white, but it turns out quite silvery when it hits my skin. For the rest of the lid, I used Max Factor Kohl Pencil in the shade Charcoal Grey as the base, and then blended Black Milk (matte) over the top. Of course I had to add SOME colour somewhere, so Eye of Horus Emerald Tabula Goddess Pencil was what I chose for the waterline...


Foundation was DB Longwear 24 Hour, cheeks were Lacura Cream Blush in Soft Coral, and the I added a light dusting of Maybelline Master High-Light Blush in Pink Rose. It's the first time I've used this blush, and I'm crazy about both the colour and the slightly shimmery finish. I used Crop Natural Mineral Pressed Bronzer in Solaire for a hint of contouring, and my lips were David Jones Moisture Cream Lipstick in Terracotta...


And here's the jewellery I put together to complete the outfit...


I reckon terracotta and grey are a beaut team for Autumn, and I've no doubt you'll be seeing these two together a lot more often up here, in one form or another.,,

What's your feeling about silvers and greys - do you think they're boring?

Take care of you,
kats xxx

Sunday, 21 February 2016

SPOTLIGHT: Marie Claire Ageless Parcel #3...

The third Marie Claire Ageless Parcel arrived mid-week, but I couldn't collect it from the PO till Saturday. Was it worth waiting a few extra days for? Most definitely! While not quite as exciting as earlier editions, the contents are once again very good quality, and there's no denying it's amazing value - total comes to around $120, and considering I paid $25, that's a pretty awesome deal for items specific to my needs. Four full-sized products, one 15ml sample, and a single eye mask - this last beauty product is the one I'm most eager to try 
Here's the details of the individual items, starting from the left in the pic...

Tresemmé Fullness Emulsion Spray (125ml, $10.99)
This is described as a thickening spray, "infused with antioxidants and omega3s" - can be sprayed on wet or dry hair, and is designed to give more volume. I would normally avoid such products as my hair is naturally thick and bushy, but since having it straightened, it's all sleek and flat so I can experiment a little with something like this ...

Elucent Whitening Hand Cream (50g, $24.99)
This is a beautiful hand cream - I know, I've used it before. While there was definitely a lightening of my age spots, I need a specialised regime to achieve any major fading, but I'm delighted to have this in my stash for when I finish the treatment products I'm currently using. Contains Vitamins C, E & B3 ...

Garnier Skin Naturals Miracle Sleeping Cream (50ml, $19.99)
Love the name! Haven't tried this before, and I'm champing at the bit to introduce it into my routine - the parcel contents card says this "has the benefits of a mask, but with the feel of a lotion". OK, you got me, I'm in!
LonVitalite C8 Collagen Crystal Eye Mask ($32 for 6)
This will most definitely be the very first product I try from the box - 100% natural (plant-based) collagen, and it'll help reduce my fine lines, and hopefully give my deeper ones a scare. Dark circles are targeted too - the aim is brighter eyes. Could sure do with a couple of those 
My eyes feel cool and soothed just looking at these cute little mandarin-shaped slices. There's no instructions as to how long to leave them on for, so I'll assume it's like their other masks - 20 minutes. Might give these a whirl tonight...

Elizabeth Arden Pro Triple Action Protector (15ml, 50ml is $99)
Well this sounds interesting - DNA Enzyme Complex + Antioxidants. I'm gathering it's a tinted sunscreen with major benefits! For face, neck and decolletage, this is supposed to moisturise, boost the natural repair system, and protect. It's fragrance free (which is a bit of a bore), but it's also paraben free and non-comedogenic. It's expensive, so it's a SURE BET I'll fall in love with it ha ha ...

essano Rosehip Collagen Repair Serum (30ml, $29.99)
I really like essano skincare, especially the fact that I can buy it at the supermarket - I have their Rosehip Oil which is excellent quality for a great price, so I'm very much looking forward to trying this serum. At this stage in my life, I'm in dire need of collagen so this baby is very welcome thank you! Had a quick sniff and it smells like Mother Nature whipped it up in her kitchen - yum 
All up another terrific selection - there's nothing here that I'm not going to use stat. Of course I'll report back once I've tried them all - still haven't cracked open a couple of the products from the other two collections, so it may be a while, but I'll get there ...

If this beauty box takes your fancy, you'll find details on how to subscribe on my rave review post of the 2nd parcel here.

Take care of you,
kats xxx

P.S. Looking for new blogs to follow? Can highly recommend Ingrid's Monday Makeup Madness Link Up Party - it's a great way to start the week 

Saturday, 20 February 2016

EOTD: MUA Emerald & Navy...

My love of teaming emerald green and navy is pretty well known by now  - it's one of my most frequent combinations, and it works in any season. Having recently changed my hair colour though, I reckon I'll have to check out what works with the new hue and what doesn't. So at the risk of boring you, here we go again lol...


My base was Chi Chi Stay On Eyeliner in the shade Wanna See Your Peacock - it's a lovely shimmery green, almost metallic, and holds the shadow brilliantly. Over that went MUA Shade 6 (emerald), and then I blended the crease, outer corner and lower lashline with MUA matte Midnight. It's a beautiful deep blue, although in these pics it looks more like black. Waterline was Eye of Horus Emerald Tabula Goddess Pencil. Looking a bit googly-eyed here, but I've discovered that NOT smiling when I take the photos shows off the shadows better, and there's less wrinkles and crinkles ha ha... 


For my face I used Mirenesse Liquid Silk foundation, cheeks were Lacura Minerals Cream Blush in Pink Rose dusted with  Hourglass Ambient Mood Exposure, and lips were Cover Girl Ravish Raspberry...


And here's all the jewellery I put together to go with my outfit...


Hope your weekend is super relaxing, refreshing and revitalising 

Take care of you,
kats xxx

Monday, 15 February 2016

SPOTLIGHT: David Jones Deluxe Sampler Totes...

Good old DJ's - they keep coming out with these Deluxe Sampler Tote bags, and it's a very rare occurrence for me not to indulge. They're always great value, and it's a beaut opportunity to try a whole heap of beauty loot that wouldn't normally cross my path. As usual there's two varieties to choose from, with three products common to each bag. I couldn't decide which one to pick up, so I bought both - there were items in each that caught my eye e.g. the Antipodes Hosanna H20 Skin Plumping Serum, and the MOR Rosa Noir Hand & Body Milk ...


So here's the contents of the first one, easy to spot with the pink writing...


For anyone who's interested, there's quite a few discount cards in both bags, and the candle smells divine so I'm delighted to have two Almost all skin care, but there's a makeup item in each - this one has Blinc Eyeliner which I've never tried before...


And bag #2, with the purple label...


This one has a full sized Natio Day Cream, and Napoleon Perdis Madame Curl Curl Mascara...


And the totes themselves are always a bonus - very sturdy and roomy, with a stud closure at the top, and an inner pocket. I have quite a few of these, but this time around they're quite understated, which I prefer - only the DJ's classic pattern in gold rather than a heritage picture...

The bags are advertised as containing over $130 worth of products (although I haven't done the sums), and are $19.95. You do have to buy something in order to qualify, and here's what I chose - lipsticks of course! These colours will be perfect for the upcoming Autumn - Honey Gold (left) and Terracotta. Love the formula of DJ's lippies - my only beef is that the peel off stickers leave behind a gooey residue which annoyingly collects fluff! 
Even the clear plastic zippered bags are handy - almost big enough to hold my makeup for an overnight stay! All up I'm very happy with the contents of both - nice one DJ's 

Will you be buying either of these Sampler Totes? If so, which one appeals to you the most?

Take care of you,
kats xxx

Sunday, 14 February 2016

REVIEWS: Elizabeth Arden True Love EDT...

Happy Valentine's Day lovelies  I'm one of those gals who believe every day should be Valentine's Day - why be extra loving and romantic on just one day of the year? But I appreciate the reminder every February 14, and of course, any excuse to introduce a new fragrance is always welcome  This review is somewhat unusual because I bought this bottle of Elizabeth ArdenTrue Love (blind) at the end of Autumn last year, and didn't like it at all. I don't think I've EVER seen a tester for this perfume, but it sounded (and looked) lovely, plus it was half price, so I figured I couldn't go wrong. Well my heart sank at the first spritz, so I stuck it in a drawer and promptly forgot about it. But I rediscovered it during my holiday clean out and decided to give it another go. Delighted to say either my taste has changed, or it's a warm weather scent - either way, something's different, and I'm loving it ...
Being pastel pink, and with a name like True Love, I was expecting a soft powdery floral, but it's actually quite sharp, spicy and almost sour. Classified as an oriental floral, listed top notes are peach, apricot, green (whatever that is) and freesia, and then there's a whole bunch of flowers in the middle (iris, jasmine, lily-of-the-valley and rose - very strong on the rose) plus orris root, and the base is sandalwood, vanilla (can't pick it at all), cedar and amber. My overworked (lol!) nose can't detect any fruit whatsoever, and with so many on-line reviewers saying it smells like baby powder, I can only assume it just reacts differently to individual skin chemistry because there's nothing powdery about this at all to me. I find this fragrance unique, woody and yet crisp and fresh, and for an EDT, it lasts an incredibly long time (up to 4 hours)...

Some folks call this vintage or old fashioned or old-ladyish - I wouldn't call it modern, but there's nothing musty or dusty about it. More like innocent with the charm of a bygone era - makes me think of long floral dresses and big hats, a picnic blanket and blush champagne for two 
The bottle is somewhat of a plain jane, but I love its simplicity, and the colour is ever so girly and feminine. In summary I'd call it spiced rose. I've never been all that interested in Elizabeth Arden perfumes, but I just might have to investigate the others...

To celebrate Valentine's Day, I'm giving away a 100ml bottle - because it's perfume and I can't post it OS, this is for Australian residents only. No Rafflecopter this time, just comment below why you think you might like this, and I'll choose what I reckon is the most creative answer next Friday (19th February) 

Take care of you,
kats xxx

P.S. Have you checked out Ingrid's Monday Makeup Madness Link Up Party yet? Starts at 6:30am every Monday morning 

Edit: after much deliberation, the winner is...

Candice Needham 

Thanks to all you lovelies who entered - but don't stray too far as I have more giveaways coming up very soon xxx

Saturday, 13 February 2016

CONFESSIONS: Of a Body Washaholic (Part 15)...

Well it doesn't seem to matter how many body washes I buy and try, somehow there's always more to be discovered - fortunately! However I think these two may have taken me to the last of the Original Source range - there are others of course (I wish I could find the Mango one), and sadly not all varieties are available in Australia (like Liquorice Scrub, Cherry & Jojoba Oil or Strawberry & Pink Peppercorn) but the remaining fragrances I've found on my treks to various local supermarkets just don't grab me when I give them the sniff test. Still I'm absolutely delighted I kept widening my search area, because these two are beauties ...
You'll find my review of the other four I put to the test here - at the time I declared the Tropical Pineapple as my fave, but it's been well and truly surpassed by the fabulous Lime. If you're a fan of  this particularly zesty citrus fruit, then I have one recommendation - buy the big bottle! I've used about two thirds of the 250ml, but I've already bought the larger size as I'm powering through it, up to four times a week now that summer has finally settled down in Sydney. This zingy concoction is my go-to for the hot days we've been having more or less consistently of late. The uplifting scent is incredibly cooling and refreshing, and I'm delighted that it's all natural, enriched with essential oils, and not tested on animals. Even the colour of it makes me smile, and sets me in a happy mood to start the day ...

The Vanilla & Raspberry was recommended to me by a friend - she got me by saying it smelled like strawberry Freddos (thank you sweetie!). I was a little concerned about the vanilla content as it's not normally a fragrance I go for in the shower, mainly because similarly with chocolate or cocoa scented products, I often don't feel all that fresh and clean afterwards. Anyways I liked the smell when I flipped the lid in Woolies, so it launched itself into my trolley. All I can say is WOW - I wasn't expecting to fall in love, but I'm totally under its spell! Creamy and comforting (yes it does remind me of berry Freddos hon), but my take on it is more like one of those delicious fluffy fruit trifles that come in a huge parfait glass that you wish was never going to end. I hope I can find this in the giant size too as I'm almost out. While I'm loving it this season, I reckon this might become my numero uno in the cooler months when I stash away the lime one, and my preference is for something more warming. According to their website, there's a handwash in this flavour too, although I've not seen it anywhere - boo!...
Both these shower creams are non-drying, use 100% natural fragrances, and are such great value for around $5, even more so when they're on special  - incidentally, Coles have them at the mo' for $2  

Here's hoping my review has made your mouth water ha ha. What's your favourite Original Source body wash scent?

Take care of you,
kats xxx

Friday, 12 February 2016

EOTD: Yellow, Black and...Purple!...

Wow how scary is it that February is almost half over? I'm way behind with my EOTD posts, in fact this is my first for the month, so I'm not going to waste any time blabbing, except to say that this was yet another experiment that didn't turn out quite as I'd planned lol...


Can you guess this was to match a black and yellow outfit? Actually I don't have very many yellows in my kit - they're mainly on the golden or orangey side of the fence, but I do have this sunny pineapple shade in the bhcosmetics Take Me To Brazil palette. It's a matte so I used the slightly shimmery Chi Chi Midas Touch Waterproof Gel Eyeliner as the base, and Eye of Horus Smokey Black Goddess Pencil underneath the matte black. When it came to the waterline, I immediately reached for the EOH black liner again, but then thought that choice was a bit ho-hum because that's what I ALWAYS do, so instead I took a chance on the Amethyst Jewel one. Hmmm - not sure that purple was the best option here, but I ran out of time to do anything about it, so purple waterline it was ha ha...


As you can see, after two weeks, my hair is still smooth and straight, and I'm STILL tripping that I don't have any frizz! For my face I applied Mirenesse Liquid Silk Foundation, and cheeks were Maybelline Master Glaze Blush Stick in Make a Mauve, with a sweep of Laura Geller Blush-N-Brighten in Berry...


Lips were one of my favourite plummy lippies, DB Cosmetics Longwear in Perfect Plum...


And here's a new little feature - I've started taking a quick and dirty pic of the jewellery of the day (JOTD), on a back drop of the top half of my outfit. These photos seem to be popular on my Instagram page, so I'll include them here in case anyone's interested 


Hope you're having a brilliant summer lovelies, and if you're on the other side of the world, that you're keeping warm 

Take care of you,
kats xxx