Sunday, 5 July 2020

SPOTLIGHT: Favourite May & June 2020 LOTD's...

If you follow my Instagram account, you would have noticed that instead of the regular five-days-a-week appearances, my LOTD uploads are somewhat sporadic and erratic. Due to COVID, I'm only heading into the office every second week, and while I'm still wearing makeup just about every day, I'm saving my dress-ups (and consequently my LOTD pics) for those days when I go to the workplace. Consequently, I've not had many lip love photos to choose from, but below are what I put together from the May & June limited assortment...

Collage of May/June 2020 favourite lip colours

What's been interesting is that my lipstick application skills soon deteriorate if I don't keep up the practice, so some of these are a bit lopsided - anyways the colours and textures are what count, right?

Colourpop DM, NYX Shady & Revlon Coy


1. Colourpop Ultra Metallic Lip - DM. A regular, I trot this out when I'm wearing golden browns from my wardrobe. In July last year, I said it was too drying and was going to toss it, but in the end, I couldn't bear to do it as I've nothing else quite like it, and I solved the problem by applying a thin layer of balm underneath ...
2. NYX SlipTease Lip Lacquer - Shady. You'll see these fairly often as they are totally fabulous - full review of the majority of the shades is HERE. Still can't believe I picked these up for $7 each from Priceline ...
3. Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balm - Coy. I've had this for ages and I'm bamboozled as to why I've never worn it. Lost in a sea of lip products, I'm delighted I singled it out. It's gorgeous - creamy, moist, wears pretty well, super convenient being in crayon form, and I just adore the colour ...


Antipodes South Pacific Coral, Maybelline Rose Rush & Seraphine Cherry Cream


4. Antipodes - South Pacific Coral. Received this in a surprise gift from the brand, and I wear it fairly regularly. It's actually a lot brighter in the tube but I'm experimenting with different lip liners underneath to see if I can get it to really pop. Fabulous formula, sooooo comfortable ...
5. Maybelline Color Sensational Rebel Bloom - Rose Rush. Seems to be only available on eBay now - such an unusual and pretty orangey-pinky-red. I'll keep wearing it though in the hope that MNY changes their mind and brings it back - LOVE IT! ...
6. Seraphine Botanicals Vegan Berry Tint - Cherry Cream.  Three years old and still going strong. Supremely comfortable with brilliant coverage and wears well. Although it does get a little dry after a few hours, reapplication is smooth and makes it all creamy again ...


Maybelline Pioneer, Avon Mark Berry Cute & IBY Beauty Mardi Gras

7. Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink - Pioneer. How about that red hey? These liquid lippies are astonishingly good - methinks I need a few more in my kit. Their lasting power is amazing, and the comfort-factor is way up there ...
8. Avon Mark Lipstick - Berry Cute.  Love the name, the colour, the formula - I think this is appearance #4 in my faves posts, will definitely be a fifth ...
9. IBY Beauty High Intensity Lipstick - Mardi Gras. I keep this for the shade - it has a very high blue content which makes it just the right colour for several outfits. It's a little drier than other formulas, but my obsession with matching is stronger than my desire for comfort lol ...

Would any of these suit you?

Take care of you, and keep your loved ones safe,
kats xxx

Sunday, 28 June 2020

REVIEW: Sarah Jessica Parker SJP EDP...

As mentioned in a previous post, my collection has expanded (oops!) through various avenues, but I bought Sarah Jessica Parker's Stash myself, and without testing it first. I was actually after the 30ml bottle from Chemist Warehouse as it was only $9.99 (only a few dollars more than a roller-ball, which is how I normally test fragrances) and the reviews were amazing, but my local store was out of stock of that size, so I bit the bullet and took a chance on the 100ml for $29.99 which was all they had on the shelf. Well, as it turned out, fate was guiding me to yet another blissful aromatic experience - it was love at first spritz, and if I'd only been able to get hold of the 30ml, I would have raced back to get my hands on the bigger size anyway. Oh boy, this is a beauty, and for that price, it's my bargain blind-buy of the year! ...

SJP Stash bottle on a gold mesh mat surrounded by a sparkly black choker

My fave scents for the cooler weather are warm spicy orientals, and this one hits the mark - a bullseye in fact. It's vastly different from the other SJP scents I have, and I'm delighted that she has included a winner from this genre in her lineup.  It was released in 2016 but I obviously missed it - still I'm making up for lost time by spraying this every other day, it's that good ...

SJP Stash bottle, box and drawstring bag

The presentation is a delight. A glossy black box with the name embossed on a diagonal strip that's been made to appear like a fabric label. At first, I thought the box was damaged (it was sealed in cellophane), but it turns out that the attention to detail is astonishing - the edges of the "label" have been made to look slightly frayed, like it really is made of fabric! Inside the box, the bottle is encased in the cutest black grosgrain bag with the name in sparkly gold, and an equally sparkly gold drawstring. The bottle itself is quite simple and solid, with the same diagonal black label (Johnny Walker?) and around the neck is a leathery cord with a little gold "SJP" button attached. I can't believe it was only $30! ...

SJP Stash bottle and drawstring bag

The fragrance is pretty close to being a masterpiece - leaning towards a masculine style, it's aromatic, woody, earthy, leathery and spicy, and the colour of dark rum. One of the most distinctive and standout fragrances I've come across from the celebrity world, this is an absolute gem. Lasts for hours and hours (let's say around 8). I spray it on before bed and I'm still floating on its heavenly cloud the next morning, and yet it isn't what I would call intrusive. The drydown is just as sassy and magnetic as the initial spray, but it mellows into something even more stunning, something that should cost a helluva lot more. There's only one fruit ingredient - grapefruit, but to my nose it's more like fig, which gives it a slight gourmand character. The rest is spice-heaven - black pepper, cedar, ginger lily, pistachio, olibanum (frankincense), vetiver, massoia wood (slightly coconutty) and musk. I'm totally besotted ...

SJP Stash bottle, box and drawstring bag

Some folks have labelled this "bohemian" or "too hippy for the office" but I beg to differ. It's sensual and a tad provocative, but not enough for me to NOT wear it to work. I'd wear it anywhere, anytime, but probably limit it (if I can) to the cooler weather. Adore! ...

 Have you tried Stash yet? Are spicy orientals your fragrance thing?

Take care of you, and keep safe,
kats xxx

Sunday, 14 June 2020

REVIEW: Elizabeth Taylor Passion EDT...

One of my perfume passions is Elizabeth Taylor's Violet Eyes - I've adored it for years but it's a challenge to find it anywhere in stock. So I decided to revisit some others from her collection that I'd dismissed many years ago, and I was both pleasantly surprised & delighted to find that my tastes have changed. And while nothing can replace the one I absolutely adore, her Passion EDT has scored a place up near the top of my list ...

Elizabeth Taylor's Passion bottle, box and a heart-shaped diamond

I admit than when I first sampled it (probably 20 years ago) my first reaction was "old lady perfume", which is why I've avoided it till now. But senses change over time, as do chemical reactions on the skin, and having scored a miniature in a boxed set, I sprayed a teeny bit on my wrist and was like, wow! It really is SO beautiful - woody and powdery with Liz's trademark gardenia content, and more than a dash of spice and incense. Rich and sensual, it's amazingly potent for an EDT - actually has more lasting power than some of my far more expensive EDP's! ...

 Passion bottle,diamante bracelet and a heart-shaped diamond necklace

Not a fragrance if you prefer to blend in, this is a powerhouse oriental for the woman that has no fear of being noticed. There are more than 20 different notes in this elixir - the main ones I can detect are gardenia, bergamot, sandalwood, patchouli, jasmine, cedar, rose, leather, musk, vanilla, incense and sandalwood, and they all blend magically into an elegant and alluring fragrance that is as unforgettable as Elizabeth herself. It's the first one she created and was released in 1988 - now that's what I call staying power ...

 Passion bottle,box & diamante bracelet

I'm in two minds about the packaging though - on the one hand, the bottle is a gorgeous deep purple art-deco style with a diamond shape embossed in the middle (no surprises there) however the cap is cheap and tacky looking and doesn't do justice to the rest of the presentation. But, given the beauty of what's inside, all is forgiven ...

Flatlay of Passion bottle & diamante bracelet

Being an EDT, I expected it to be relatively weak but the initial spritz is quite strong - while the dry down is far softer, I still recommend caution with the application. I pretty much doused myself in it on the first day and regretted it later as too much of anything (even fabulous fragrance) is just plain waste, and I never want to run out of this stunner ...

Flatlay of Passion bottle, box, heart-shaped necklace & diamante bracelet

Passion is a warm and embracing floral oriental EDT that encapsulates all the fire and softness that is womanhood, and I'm staggered that it lasts all day - no kidding lovelies, this puts many other fragrances to shame, it's as enduring as the legend herself. And the price is crazy - at the moment the 74ml bottle is on special at Chemist Warehouse for $30! There's no doubt about it - I'm passionate about Passion ...

Are you a fan of any of Elizabeth Taylor's perfumes? Do you enjoy oriental fragrances?

Take care of you, and keep safe,
kats xxx

Monday, 8 June 2020

May 2020 Empties & Giveaway!...

Well, I think you can see from the picture what I've been working on the most during the last month of isolation lol - yes the old eye bags are starting to get the better of me so I've upped the frequency of the overnight eye patches to see if I can slow down the deterioration. They are helping quite a bit with the puffiness, and with the recent half-price sales of the Skin Republic range at Woolies & Coles, I think I can maintain the treatment for another month to see if a daily application is worth the expense. As for the rest of the May Empties, there are quite a few new discoveries in this bunch, although it's just my luck that some have been discontinued. All the same, here we go ... 


Body

Method Pink Grapefruit Naturally Derived Hand Wash - (354ml, RRP $5)
Fell in love with the colour and the scent of this hand wash - I SO have a thing about pink grapefruit, and this mix also includes blood orange and cassis. A truly lovely product that's gentle on the skin and looks so pretty on the vanity. Triclosan-free, biodegradable and not tested on animals, it has only one little flaw - the container becomes unstable once you get down to the last few centimetres ...
Repurchase?
Not yet - I may just buy the refill pouch and refill another less wobbly container ...

SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Body Wash - (384ml, RRP $10)
This came with one of my regular Shea Moisture orders - they had a deal at the checkout where I was able to select a free product, and this was what I went for. So glad I did because it's brilliant, and I've since ordered another. It's one of their Limited Editions, but one I hope will be available for a while. Super enriching, it's perfect for dry winter skin, and also contains African Rock Fig & Baobab Oil. Has a deliciously sweet honey-ish scent with a hint of fig, yum! ...
Repurchase?
Sure did ...

Regulars
Oral-B 3D White Luxe Glamorous White Toothpaste (96g, RRP $9.49)
Reach Dentotape (20m, RRP $2.99)
SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Hydrating Body Wash (384ml, RRP $24.95)
White Glo Charcoal Total Mouth Detox Whitening Mouthwash (500ml, RRP $6.99)


Face


MIÓD Skincare Balancing Face Oil  (30ml, RRP $45)
This partly used sample bottle has been on my bench for almost 3 years - embarrassing, and I didn't realise it had been that long until I looked it up on my blog to find out where it came from. It was the March 2017 edition of the Good Green Box, a subscription service that sadly is no more. Smells so incredibly DIVINE, I'm at a loss as to why I started using it and then stopped. But kudos to this brand as the product is just as delicious and stable, even after all this time, and leaves my skin feeling fabulously soothed, radiant and replenished. It's formulated especially for oily/combo skin - lightweight, and it absorbs magically. This is really something special ...
Repurchase?
I reckon so ...

Neutrogena HydroBoost Night Concentrate  (50g, RRP $26.99)
Bought this to try as I love the sheet masks in this range. Not so fussed on this - it was fine for the summer, but I didn't find it anywhere near moisturising enough for these cooler months. So pretty to look at though and it smells, hmmm, ok - it has little blue beads suspended in the gel, but I found they didn't always dissolve and stayed on my skin surface, which was a tad annoying. I think in general I'm not a fan of these new gel moisturisers - I don't like the sticky feeling they leave behind, I prefer the slip & slide of a standard formula ...
Repurchase?
I think not ...

Neutrogena HydroBoost Water Gel Cleanser  (145ml, RRP $15.99)
I've actually had this on the bench for over a year but didn't finish it off till now as I was so enamoured with their Pink Grapefruit Oil-Free Acne Wash throughout the hot season. Doesn't take up much space on the bench, nice fresh scent, highly effective on waterproof makeup, but didn't notice any benefit in the hydration department ...
Repurchase?
Maybe, but not till the weather warms up ...

Nivea 3-in-1 Urban Skin Detox Clay Wash  (150ml, RRP $9.99)
Love this - used it as a scrub as I also have the separate 1 Minute Mask in the same range. Green tea, black rice & kaolin clay - a great combo for my skin, gentle enough to use every day as the consistency is more like a polish, and I would except I get bored using the same thing too often. Leaves my face feeling soft and smooth, adore the clean fresh fragrance ...
Repurchase?
Yes, it's been replaced already ...

Olay Regenerist Whip UV Cream SPF 30  (50g, RRP $48.99)
My new #1 day-cream - I've always loved the Regenerist range, and I'm thrilled that they've introduced this Whip version with SPF 30. Used this all throughout the summer without any greasies emerging during the day. The scent is so lovely - fresh & invigorating and a pleasure to experience every time. Kicking myself a bit as I bought this and the Luminous one during the same bargain sale, so I need to use up that one next, but it doesn't have the same scent although it's supposed to minimise pores. Either way, I'm pretty impressed with Olay, just wish their jars were recyclable ...
Repurchase?
Absolutely ...

Regulars
Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make-up Remover (112ml, RRP $10.89) 
Olay Regenerist Miracle Boost Youth Pre-Essence (40ml, RRP $39.99) 
Swisspers Make-up Pads (Pack of 80, RRP $3.79)

Face Masks


Anko (Kmart) Evening Primrose Botanical Eye Mask (2 pairs, RRP $3)
I did a rave review of the Raspberry Leaf variety last month, and haven't been able to buy them since - totally sold out! Fortunately, I bought these a few months ago, but I haven't seen them since either - I think COVID has a lot to do with their lack of availability in that they are made in China, and I reckon every second gal who's working from home has bought up the supply. They're terrific, cheap as chips, and if you ever see them on the racks, buy lots ...
Repurchase?
Would if I could ...


Anko (Kmart) Red Ginseng Botanical Eye Mask (2 pairs, RRP $3)
Ditto the above ...
Repurchase?
Ditto the above ...

Andalou CannaCell Glow Mask (50g, RRP $22.99)
This came my way via the beautyheaven Natural Beauty Event late last year - gave it 5 gold stars, and having finished the jar, still feel it deserves each and every one of them. My first experience with an enzyme mask - interesting green jelly with an unusual but pleasant botanical fragrance, and even more interesting stinging sensation when applied, though not to the point of being uncomfortable. I was expecting my face to be a slightly irritated pink when I washed off the cream, but it just looked more glowy and healthy than usual ...
Repurchase?
Definitely - I have four opened masks on the vanity at the mo' but will buy a jar once I finish one of them ...

Regulars
Skin Republic 24K Gold Aquagel Under Eye Patch (2 pairs, RRP $12.99)
Skin Republic Collagen Hydrogel Under Eye Patch (3 pairs, RRP $9.99)
Skin Republic Retinol Hydrogel Under Eye Patch (3 pairs, RRP $9.99)


Hair

mydentity demi-permanent Hair Colour - Silver Smoke (58g, RRP $28.95)
At last I've found a silvery grey hair colour that doesn't contain any yellow and doesn't fade to reveal golden highlights. It's been quite a struggle but I found this on the MyHairCare&Beauty website - one of those places that sell salon products. It costs twice as much as supermarket hair colour but when I want something really bad, I'll pay for it. This demi I used with 30 vol developer and it barely faded in 6 weeks - amazing! The only problem is it doesn't cover my white hair all that well so I'll be buying the permanent one next time ...
Repurchase?
You betcha ...

Regulars
Goldwell Kerasilk Control Shampoo (250ml, RRP $35.95)


Makeup


Australis Full On Foundation SPF30 - Natural Fawn (15g, RRP $18)
I have to stop buying foundation when it's on sale, and when I already have a stack to use up. This one was under $10 from the Australis website, and by the time I opened it and discovered how brilliant it was, there were none left because, again, it's been discontinued. The most amazing full coverage foundation stick that was a perfect skin tone match, didn't cake or crease, and it had SPF30. Why oh why did Australis stop making it? I even used a brush to poke down into the wind-up tube to get the last of it out. Sob! ...
Repurchase?
Not available any more ...

Maybelline Dream Liquid Mousse - Sand Beige (30ml, RRP $22.95)
I found this stuck down the back of one of my stash drawers - I think it's been there for a few years as I don't remember buying it, and the range has been discontinued. This is the problem when you have too many stash drawers! But I DO remember that I loved it, and considering it was unopened I decided to use it up. So glad I did because this is the perfect shade for me, and I love the formula - excellent coverage without looking gluggy or mask-like. Over the years I've been enamoured with just about any MNY foundation that has "Dream" in the name (and there's been quite a few) and this was no exception. Currently using their Dream Urban Cover foundation, so the love affair continues ...
Repurchase?
Not available any more ...

Maybelline Face Studio Prime Pore Minimising Primer (30ml, RRP $17.95)
This was on special from somewhere, but it's still available lol! Almost the same mousse formula/texture/finish as my fave DB Cosmetics one. Fills in the gigantic pores on my nose and an overall terrific mattifying primer. Creates a silky smooth base for foundation, and I apply it on the days I don't wear any makeup as it cuts the shine and makes my skin look better than it is ...
Repurchase?
Yes - this is a great alternative if my fave isn't available ...

Regulars
BYS Highlighting Palette (5 pans + brush, RRP $14.95)
RapidLash Eyelash Enhancing Serum (3ml, RRP $69)


Giveaway


This month I have a special "restriction-lifting" pack to celebrate the return to the workplace and a bit more socialising, but always with caution hey...



  • Essence Hey Cheeks Blush, Bronzer & Highlighter Palette
  • Nutrimetics Nourishing Lip Oil
  • Nutrimetics Silk Creme Lipstick - Violet
  • Nutrimetics Silk Creme Lipstick - Frosted Grape
  • Nutrimetics Silk Creme Lipstick - Aztec Bronze
  • Nutrimetics Silk Creme Lipstick - Scarlet
  • Synergie Skin Sanitiser Spray for hands & surfaces

Here are the lipstick colours...


And here's what's inside the Essence palette (it has a clear plastic protective cover that's reflecting the light, which is why the pans look a bit wonky)


All items were purchased by me and the approximate value is $200.  The giveaway is open to...

Australian Residents Only! 
Here's how to enter...
  1. Leave a blog post comment on this page that answers the question inside the Rafflecopter (please note: if you don't leave a comment on this page, you won't be included in the draw!If you're unable to leave a comment for technical reasons, please email your answer to katshepsutt(at)gmail.com.
  2. Leave your email address inside the Rafflecopter so I can contact you if you win
  3. Follow my blog one way or another from the many choices listed
  4. Only one entry per person, please read the T's & C's inside the Rafflecopter
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This giveaway is now closed  - check back later tonight to find out who won!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Woo hoo! - random.org has chosen the beautiful Ingrid N. as the winner.  
Congratulations gorgeous! 
Ingrid, please respond to the email I've sent you by midnight
Thursday 18th June to claim your prize :-)
Edit: Ingrid has claimed her prize 
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Best of luck to all who enter!

Take care of you, and keep safe
kats xxx