Sunday, 25 September 2016

REVIEW: Maybelline Vivid Matte Liquid Lipsticks...

Maybelline, you've done it again! In my opinion, MNY are the #1 drugstore brand for the most consistently fabulous lip products - these Vivid Matte Liquids are exceptionally good, and by far the most comfortable liquid lippies of all the ones I've tried of late. Flat matte lip products are all the rage, but I struggle with the inevitable drying effects, usually within half an hour of application. Some are tolerable if re-applied, but others need to be removed completely to avoid streaking and clumping, and that's a pain for me when I'm at work. This range is NOT matte (yay!) - more like a satin with a slight gloss, although they do dull down once they dry. But I'm so enamoured with both the formula and colour range, I bought the whole set ...
Not just moisturising, they're also creamy and light yet dense enough to cover the (in some places deep brown) freckle pigmentation that I have, on both the fleshy part of my lips as well as the outline. All but the two nudes leave behind a generous stain after a meal (although they do transfer), and the hues are stunning - from nude through pink to hot pink, orange, plum and an absolutely sensational red! I could rave on all day, but I'll let the swatches do the talking ...


This first one is Plum Possessed - such a pretty plum with quite a bit of brown content - I'll be putting this away till Autumn. The one on the right is Nude Flush, the most gorgeous nudey pink in my kit, I absolutely adore it ...



One the left is Nude Thrill - another fabulous nude with a hint of orange, just to make it interesting. And that flaming fruit sensation next to it is Orange Shot - a stunner for the brave, and one I'll be wearing over and over again throughout the Summer...



And here we have what I reckon is the cream of the crop - Rebel Red. SO bright, SO bold and SO vibrant. On the right is Fuchsia Ecstasy - a sassy pink that's has so much red in it, it's almost a red...



These pinks look very similar, and they are, but not quite as much as my shonky camera portrays them. The first one, Berry Boost, is deeper and has a drop or two of blue in it, whereas Electric Pink on the right is considerably brighter and definitely high voltage...

The applicator is the traditional does foot spongey kind with a slight curve - super easy to apply, and the cap locks in place with a few twists...
L to R: Posessed Plum, Nude Flush, Nude Thrill, Orange Shot, Rebel Red, Fuchsia Ecstasy, Berry Boost, Electric Pink

I'm plum loco about them all! Not exactly cheap at $17.95 a pop, but I managed to pick up most of them for half price at Chemist Warehouse - they're pretty much out of stock now as their sale has been going on for a while, but you might be lucky. Yet another triumph Maybelline - keep 'em coming ...

Have you tried any of these liquid lippies? Which shade do you think would suit you best?

Take care of you,
kats xxx

P.S. You'll find this post and many more over at Ingrid's Monday Madness Link Up Party ...

Monday, 19 September 2016

REVIEW: Vera Wang Princess Revolution EDT...

Ahh Vera, you sure know what I like - just added this Vera Wang Princess Revolution to my collection because the sample spritz was unforgettable. Had to have it, even though this is only an EDT, and as expected, doesn't survive much longer than two or three hours. However while its longevity on the skin is somewhat disappointing, it's one of those perfumes that surrounds you in a fragrant cloud of deliciousness for as long as it lasts. Since buying it I've discovered there are nine others in the Princess range - whoa! (says she, crawling out from under her rock). Interestingly it's the only one that I've tried, for the simple reason that I so rarely see any Vera Wang testers in my frequented haunts, and, well, let's just say I've banned myself from DJ's and Myers perfume department until further notice lol!...
Like most of my other VW fragrances, this is a fruity floral - opening notes are black cherry, blood orange and watermelon (big on the watermelon).  At its heart are jasmine, lily of the valley and red apple blossom over a seductively sumptuous base of amber wood and cedar. In other words, precisely my kinda thang. The blurb says it's aimed at gals who are rebellious, confident and edgy (not me at all ha ha), but the bit about "...her only rule is to never follow any rules" sits very comfortably with my persona ...
The bottle is particularly gorgeous - the bold red glass is decorated with pencil drawings, mainly of hearts and stars and described as "graffiti", but to me they're more like the sort of doodles I come up with in one of my painfully boring meetings (yes I still take a pen and paper to meetings!). The flacon design is exceptionally clever because it captures a true heart shape, yet is perfectly stable standing on its own, and there's even a detachable ring underneath the crown cap, although I think I have enough already...
Refreshingly fun and flirty with a splash of the sensual, it's perfect for me this time of year when I'm emerging from my heady ambery and spicy orientals, but not yet ready for the crisp crystalline and zingy summer fruit varieties I so love when the mercury soars. Undoubtedly aimed at a much-younger-than-me demographic, but hey I'm not one to let a marketing department decide what I do and don't like! Available in the usual stockists at $49 for 50ml, I found this on special a week ago at Mega Save Chemist for $38.99. LOVE IT 

Are you a fan of the Vera Wang Princess series? Which one is your fave?

Take care of you,
kats xxx

P.S. Looking for some great blogs to follow? You'll find plenty over at Ingrid's Monday Madness Link Up Party ...

Saturday, 17 September 2016

REVIEW: Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant - Best in Beauty 2015...

Crikey, it's beautyheaven Best In Beauty Awards time again! This time last year I was voting, and racking my brains over my entry in this awesome annual competition, and to my absolute delight, I was one of the lucky winners  To be fair I won't be entering again this year, but I'll sure be letting beautyheaven know which ones are my faves from the list of nominations. I still have a stack of long overdue reviews of the fabulous products that came in my prize pack, so here goes with the amazing Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant - this is a long forgotten love, and one I'm so grateful that bh reminded me of, plus it's been nominated again this year... 
I first discovered this ever so gentle skin smoother, soother and brightener back in 2013 - from memory I collected several freebie sample bottles from some magazine covers, and was 100% sold after the first use. It's a very fine rice-based powder that you mix with water into a creamy paste, gently massage into your skin for approximately 1 minute, and then rinse off...
Apart from Rice Bran, other ingredients include Green Tea, Gingko and Colloidal Oatmeal, along with Licorice Root, Allantoin and Papain. It's honestly the gentlest "scrub" I've ever had the pleasure to use - gentle enough to use every day, even on my ancient face...

Containing no artificial colours or fragrances, it has a kind of oatmealy scent, but it's very subtle. Just LOVE how my face feels after a dose of this magical powder - amazingly smooth and silky, and the overall texture looks more refined. Best of all there's not even a hint of pink when I step out of the shower, or any other visible sign of irritation ...
No wonder it won last year, and I'll put my money on it scoring another accolade this time around - I'll certainly be voting for it! Thank you again beautyheaven and Dermalogica for reminding me that I need this in my life on a permanent basis 

This is definitely my HG exfoliator - would love to know yours...

Did you enter the beautyheaven Best in Beauty Awards 2016 competition?

Take care of you,
kats xxx

P.S. Linking this to the always brilliant Ingrid's Monday Madness Link Up Party ...

Monday, 12 September 2016

SPOTLIGHT: August Empties!...

This post comes to you from a very happy blogger - the days are finally getting longer, the Antarctic winds are finding someone else's toes to freeze, and I've started poking around in the secondary wardrobe for some of the bargains I scored at the end of last Spring/Summer. I do so love buying at end of season sales, and then stashing things away so that I've something fresh and new to wear on day one. And today I changed my hair colour (yet again!), but enough of the Kats-Has-Got-Spring-Fever ravings, let's get on with last month's empties ...
Skin Doctors Relaxaderm Advance (30ml RRP $59.95)
From memory I bought this at Chemist Warehouse because it came with a free tube of Younger Hands (which is very good).  I've been using this instead of a serum - advertised as a wrinkle relaxer, it claims to reduce expression lines by 66% in 28 days, but I've not noticed much difference in my crevasses. To be honest I think I'm too far gone for anything like this to have an effect, but you don't know till you try! I've had mixed results from SD products in the past - some have been astoundingly good (like their Eyetuck), while others have been nice enough, but not all that (visibly) effective. I reckon this would be excellent for much younger gals who are starting to see some signs of ageing...
Repurchase?
No - my search for the Fountain of Youth will continue elsewhere...

Imperial Leather Japanese Spa - Jasmine & Green Tea Triple Moisturising Bodywash (1 litre RRP $8.99)
Another one of my gigantic bottle purchases, but unlike the Forbidden Fruit one, I'm still loving this fragrance. Surprising as it contains Jasmine, but it's beautifully balanced with the Green Tea, plus a wee bit of citrus, orange blossom and rose - a lovely fresh and slightly exotic scent that hits the spot all year round. I raved about it HERE, in fact I think it's the same bottle lol!...
Repurchase?
Definitely - at least this one is still available at Coles, but I'll wait till I've cleared some of the others in the cupboard ...

Garnier Skin Naturals Miracle Sleeping Cream (50ml RRP $19.95)
This came in my third Marie Claire Ageless Parcel, and won me over from the first application. It's just plain gorgeous - the fragrance alone is heavenly enough to put me in the perfect state for a peaceful slumber. The cream has an unusual texture - it's sort of springy to the touch (if that makes any sense). Not a gel nor a cream, but somewhere in between. Magnificently hydrating without being heavy, it absorbs in a flash, and I wake up with plump, refreshed and satin-soft skin, and no oily film. LOVE it! ...
Repurchase?
Already have another jar - I have SO many night creams to try, but I'll alternate them with this because it's so special ...

Mirenesse Liquid Silk Foundation (35g RRP $59.50)
Well whoopdedoo, I finished some makeup! I have to hand it to Mirenesse - they make fabulous foundation. Pricey (unless you're a VIP member), and their entire range of foundations only comes in 4 shades, but Vienna is the perfect match for me. This baby is matte, oil free and contains SPF15. It's not my HG (their Velvet Maxi Lift Supreme Antiageing Renovage is even better) but it's a close second. Not quite enough coverage to be perfect, but with a tinted cc cream underneath, the finish is superb. Detailed review HERE ...
Repurchase?
I'm in a bit of a quandry - I like the Velvet Maxi Lift a tad more but it's an extra $40, and I'm just now trying their new Smooth Nude CC Hydra Makeup Mousse which I'm absolutely loving, so... maybe not ...

Maybelline FITme Shine-Free Foundation Stick (9g RRP $15.95)
I always like to have a stick foundation in my kit, but I was disappointed with this. Super easy to apply and blend, but kind of disappears by lunchtime on my combo skin, and even though I didn't wear it every day, I used up the entire stick within a month. I didn't find it to be shine-free either ...
Repurchase?
No - MNY make so many other foundations that are heaps better...


Clairol Nice'nEasy - Natural Lightest Golden Brown (RRP $12.99)
My experimentation with a new hair colour continues - so now I'm moving away from the reds and getting into the golden stream, and this shade is a natural looking dark honeyish blonde (no way is it brown!). As mentioned in previous empties posts, this range suits me to a T because the colour never EVER becomes darker with re-application. I'm actually after something a wee bit deeper as my base, but the next one up is medium brown which I reckon will be too dark, so I might do my usual trick and mix them half and half ...
Repurchase?
Oui - there's several boxes under the bathroom sink ...

Lancôme Trésor in Love Eau de Parfum (30ml/50ml/75ml RRP $81/$114/$138)
SO sad when I finished this - it was only a miniature, but I sure fell under its spell, and I made it last for 4 years! I wrote a rave review about it on beautyheaven HERE, and called it 100% romance. The original Trésor smells like rotting fruit on me, but this fruity-floral on a cedar base is nothing short of divine ...
Repurchase?
I'm putting all my gold coins in a jar so I can buy the big bottle - it's taking a while, but I'll get there ...

Clinique Even Better Eyes Dark Circle Corrector (10ml RRP $50)
I'm embarrassed to say that this eye cream was part of my beautyheaven Blogstar prize that arrived in January 2014, and it's been languishing in my drawer for two years! Mind you I don't have dark circles under my eyes (I have huge bags instead), which is why I wasn't in a hurry to try it. Nor can I report that it does in fact work. All I can say is that the cream is a fleshy colour, has a lovely texture, a groovy little dispenser nozzle, hydrates well, and leaves my skin baby soft...
Repurchase?
Negative - does nothing for my eye bags, and my squinty crows feet are the same depth...

CROP Gentle Cleansing Gel - Essential Oil Blend (125ml RRP $12)
Finishing this was probably my greatest achievement last month. I'm a huge fan of CROP products, but this cleanser would have to be the weirdest one I've ever tried. In its favour, it smells fantastic because of its essential oil content (eucalyptus, rosemary, lemongrass, cajeput & peppermint), and once I rinse out my face cloth, the water is decidedly murky and the colour of my foundation, so it's amazingly effective, but it feels way too peculiar on my skin. I'll try to explain. It's an oil. The directions say to work it into a light lather, but it's ridiculously sticky, and the only way I can get any kind of lather up is to wet my hands a little. So then it lathers a teeny bit and spreads a little more easily, but only for a few seconds, and then my hands get stuck to my skin again, and I have to add more water, and on it goes. By this stage, I'm dripping all over the sink, and well, it's all just too awkward...
Repurchase?
Shakes head from left to right - life's too short for tacky cleansers...

CROP Natural Mineral Pressed Bronzer - Solaire (10g RRP $24)
My HG bronzer - it's a quad with four shades ranging from light to dark, the lightest shade is a terrific highlighter with a slight shimmer. I've hit pan on the two deeper pigments, and halfway to the bottom on the other two, but I'm treating myself to a brand new one that doesn't look so cruddy. EXACTLY the right tone for my skin, riddled with goodness, minus all the bad stuff, and no animal testing ♥...
Repurchase?
Absolutely - it was 40% off at Coles this morning. Yay! ♥...

Did you get through many products last month?

Take care of you,
kats xxx


P.S. It's a done deal that I'm linking this to the always awesome Ingrid's Monday Madness Link Up Party 

Saturday, 10 September 2016

SPOTLIGHT: 2nd Quarter Fave LOTD's, Oranges...

Of all the lipstick colours in the world of beauty, I find orange the most challenging. I adore it, and because of my particular skin tone, I can pull off most variations, but matching it to clothing is a whole other ball game. The difficulty is that unlike nudes, pinks, reds and even purples, there's actually not a lot to choose from out there in lippy-land. Most brands have several available in their range, but they're often more coral than orange, or else they verge on fluoro, and to match the various pieces in my wardrobe I often have to mix a few shades together or slick a gloss over the top to get the right tone. Anyways I only managed to scrounge up six standouts in the last quarter, and three of them were faves in the first round, But you know me, I'll keep looking lol...

Sadly the Revlon Bronze Beauty has been discontinued, but can still be found on eBay & Amazon, which is where I'll be heading in the next few weeks so I can grab another before it's gone forever. A unique shade that's been in my kit for years - really bummed it's been dropped from the range as it's absolutely gorgeous for Autumn. The MBA Spiced Pumpkin is a fabulously potent beauty, and a darling friend sent me the matching eye shadow...spoilt hey ...


Starlet is an ancient brand that I used to find in Woolworths, but now only seems to be available in Kmart. Their cosmetics range is hopelessly old fashioned, but this Raspberry (Raspberry?) one is a winner for around $5, although whoever named it needs a new light bulb. And how about that BOE Primped? - stunning pigmentation, and for $2 they're practically giving it away ... 


These last two could easily be categorised as reds, but when lined up alongside other scarlet hues, they're distinctly orange, so here they are. I already have a spare of the Maybelline Fab Orange as the formula of these pencils is astoundingly comfortable, and the Ulta3 Pretty Poppy is the only one of the set that is opaque enough for me to wear - very similar to the MNY hue, but more glossy...

Well that's this particular series over, but it won't be long till the July/August/September ones are up. Till then keep well and safe lovelies, and have a fun-filled Spring 

Take care of you,
kats xxx

Monday, 5 September 2016

EOTM Bloggiversary Giveaway!...

They say time flies when you're having fun, so I must be having an absolute BALL because this month my little blog is three years old, and it only seems like last week that I took my first tentative steps into the blogosphere! I kinda knew I'd love this gig, but I wasn't expecting it to be the ONE THING that's kept me from losing the plot in my day job, nor did I realise what precious friendships would come my way. I'm so grateful to all you lovelies for your support and encouragement, so I'm giving one lucky follower the chance to win this mega pack of goodies. Most of the items are personal favourites of mine, and who knows, they might end up being yours too 

The prize consists of...

I've reviewed most of the products in the above list, and included links to the posts. All items were purchased by me, are brand new and sealed - total prize value is approximately $330!

Please note this giveaway is open to Australian Residents Only.

Here's another pic of the loot...
So...is this appealing at all? If so, here's how to enter...
  1. Nominate which of the August EOTD's is your favourite from the eight pictured below, and let me know in the comments section why you like it the most
  2. Inside the Rafflecopter, guess which of the EOTD's is my personal favourite
  3. Leave your email address inside the Rafflecopter so I can contact you if you win
  4. Follow my blog one way or another from the many choices listed

Please note: if you don't leave a comment on this page, or enter in the Rafflecopter which EOTD you think is my favourite, you will NOT be included in the draw. The first entry that the 'copter pulls up with the correct answer will win the prize pack, one entry per person...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This giveaway is now closed - check back later tonight to see who won!


Thank you ALL so much for your kind words, and for entering 
My personal favourite for last month was...#5 
Out of the 6 entrants who guessed correctly, random.org has chosen
 Kate W.
as the winner!
Congratulations beautiful! 
Please respond to the email I've sent you
by Thursday 29th September to claim your prize :-)
Edit: Kate has claimed her prize 
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Best of luck to all who enter!

Take care of you,
kats xxx

P.S. I'm linking this post to Ingrid's fun and informative Monday Makeup Madness Link Up Party - online at 6:30am 

Saturday, 3 September 2016

SPOTLIGHT: 2nd Quarter Fave LOTD's, Berries & Purples...

I make no secret of the fact that I'm not a Winter fan. There's no denying it does have some benefits though, like covering up all my bumps under layers of clothing, boots (LOVE boots!), and of course I get to (officially) indulge my passion for deeper hued lip products. Berries, plums and purples probably suit my skin tone best of all, and consequently I have absolutely no intention of restricting my adoration of these rich shades to the chilly season - some of these are just so darn gorgeous, I'll be wearing them all year round  Below are just a few of the ones that have earned a forever place in my heart over the last three months...

The Max Factor Intense Plum has an almost metallic finish - I love it so much I already have two spares tucked away. And Chi Chi Lady Bump will always be in my kit 


The Maybelline Color Blur pencils are (in my opinion) one of the best lip products that MNY has ever released (rave review HERE) - SO easy to work with, super comfortable formula, the perfect (not completely) matte finish for me, and the stain lasts for ages. This is the only repeater from the first quarter lineup. Adore the Milani Chilled Brandy - I only discovered how brilliant Milani lipsticks are earlier this year. Lovely and moist, amazing pigment, and the packaging is classy  


These two a very similar, but sufficiently different to warrant their individual purchases right? I think I have almost the entire set of MNY Velvet Lip Pencils (yet another rave review HERE) - cheap as chips, and I also use them as a lip liner for other lipsticks. The BOE Primped has just a wee bit more pink, and of course I need every possible shade variation  These lippies are absolute bargains, must buy some more lol ...


Ahh Revlon - I'm not even sure they make these shades any more. From memory I picked these up from a bargain table in Myer - unusual from this brand as they don't make too many purpley ones. Actually I've just checked their website, and Violet Frenzy is still listed - yay! 


Here's Revlon Seduction again - I included this extra LOTD to show you what happens when I use a brighter and more pink lip liner underneath. It's quite sheer and I find it needs some support or else it turns out a bit blotchy - maybe that's why it's been discontinued? The Australis Velourlips formula is a tad drying for my wrinkled lips, but I find it so easy to apply, it lasts well, and this particular shade is a stunner 


And last but not least are the MBA purples - all their lipsticks are beautifully bold and sassy, moist, long lasting, and I reckon they do purples better than anyone else ...

I can't possibly pick a #1 fave out of this selection - love 'em all for different reasons!

The final installment in this series (Oranges) will be up before the end of next week - regrettably only six. I tend to wear orange more in Spring and Summer, and I haven't added very many to my collection of late, mainly because none of the ones I tested were up to scratch finish-wise - does anyone else struggle to find orange lippies that apply evenly?

Take care of you,
kats xxx