Till We Meet Again: Empties and Expired Products

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I am quite a stickler for getting rid of products that are expired, especially eye makeup, simply because I had a sty once and I don’t want it to happen again.  If it says it expires in 6 months, I will usually stop using it.  That is why blogging has been great to support this purging process.  Now, I can easily go back and check when I purchased a certain item on my blog.  Who knew that blogging might be good for my health too!

Similar to typical empties blogposts, I am going to talk about how the products worked for me and whether I would repurchase them.

LJH Vita Propolis Cream

I really enjoyed LJH’s Vita Propolis Ampoule (it left my skin glowy and moisturized), so I decided to give the cream a try.   Propolis is a natural antioxidant which is great for anti-aging (hydrating and improves fine lines).  This cream was a joy to apply.  It smelled sweet and fresh (my best attempt at explaining the scent), and the texture is “just right”, not too thick or thin.  It sank in quickly and left the skin plump and moisturized.  Used as a night cream, it lasted for about 3 months.  Whether it was anti-aging or not, it is hard to say after that many layers of skincare, but it definitely did not cause any irritation, and my skin felt moisturized during the dry winter months.

Repurchase?  Yes!

Charlotte Tilbury Eyes to Mesmerise

There are many people that love Charlotte Tilbury’s makeup and I can’t say I am one of them.  I have tried 3 products from her line, and I can’t say I loved any of them.  Charlotte Tilbury’s Eyes to Mesmerize cream eyeshadows are solid products, but I just don’t think they are the best for the price, and they only have a 6 month shelf life, so you have to use them pretty quickly.  Let’s start off with good points.  The 6 shades are beautiful (slightly metallic) and super pigmented.  They also blend nicely on the eyelid.  Now, to the cons.  I found it hard to control the amount you get from the pot due to the moussy texture.  Plus, this is just personal preference, I didn’t really enjoy the experience of putting my finger or brush in the moussy formula.  Longevity-wise, I would say these last about 6-8 hours.  They creased and faded on me after that.

Repurchase?  You probably guessed.  No.  I just didn’t reach for these a whole lot.

Chanel Illusion D’Ombre

The Chanel Illusion D’Ombre cream eyeshadows are well-known for being beautiful and shimmery on the eyelids, so they probably don’t need an introduction.  Over the years, I have picked up a quite a few.  However, I haven’t bought one for a while because it seems like every brand has a cream eyeshadow now and there are really good ones for half the price.  This one was a gift from a friend.  Other than the price, I think the main deterrent is that they dry out pretty fast (less than half a year).  The bouncy texture becomes hard and dry quite quickly.  In fact, mine has even separated from the pot and will drop out of the container if I flip it upside down.

Repurchase?  Probably not, but they are so beautiful that they make for an easy impulse buy.

THREE Shadow Lining Performance Eyeliner

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If you are a Japanese Makeup lover like me, you probably would have heard of the brand THREE. Just a little side note here, I just learnt that the Amazon Japan site accepts International orders so I have been digging around the website deciding what to order.  Back to the THREE brand, it is a department store brand that aims to sell beauty products with a focus on using organic ingredients (I wouldn’t say they are a totally green line though).  I wanted to love this eyeliner because it claimed to be waterproof, smudgeproof, glides smoothly during application, and contains botanical oils that help nourish the eyelids.  I would say the claim of longevity is warranted.  However, I feel the application is not smooth at all.  The tip breaks off easily even with the lightest hand.  Plus, the last time time the tip broke off, I can’t seem to turn the product up anymore as well.

Repurchase?  No.  I wish it was a “Yes” though.

 

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Current Favourites

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If you have been reading my blog for a while, I usually like to do a current favourites blogpost every few months.  I use the same format inspired by Youtuber Ingrid Nilsen’s Sense of Self where she uses the five senses to interview her guests about their favourite things.

Sight

I am sorry my “sight” favourite is always a Youtube channel, but all I watch is Youtube.  However, I must mention that I finally got persuaded to watch “Sherlock,” which is like a modern take on the classic novel.  I’m only on the second season, but I’ve been really enjoying the amazing acting and clever dialogue of the show.

With so many Youtubers nowadays, it is hard to find someone who’s videos are totally original, especially when it comes to beauty Youtubers.  Violette’s channel violette_fr is a breath of fresh air in the Youtube beauty scene.  She is a French makeup artist who now resides in New York.  French girls are renowned for being effortlessly chic, and she totally embodies that.  She often applies her makeup using only her fingers and will do her makeup tutorials, not behind a backdrop like many Youtubers, but when she is out and about.  She has done her makeup at her favourite cafe, and even in the back of a car!

Smell

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I am one those people that watch those Perfume collection Youtube videos with envy because I can’t tolerate many scents without feeling feeling dizzy or have a headache.  However, luckily, there is one scent I enjoy in beauty products, and that is citrus.  It could be the scent of oranges, lemon, or limes.  I enjoy them all!  I’ve been especially loving the scent of the Ole Henrikson Truth Serum Collagen Booster, which is a lovely gift from my sister.  If you love the scent of ripe oranges, you will love this serum.  The scent is not subtle.  It literally smells like freshly squeezed orange juice, almost smells a bit like a Creamsicle too.  I look forward to applying this everyday.  It is full of high powered Vitamin C which is supposed to boost collagen and minimize wrinkles.  Initially, I didn’t feel like it was doing too much, but after using it for a few weeks night and day, I do notice that my skin, especially in my forehead area, is tighter and my fine lines less visible.

Taste

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This is my first attempt at making them at home.  They tasted pretty good!

I really enjoy tasting new flavours from other cultures.  Maybe, perhaps due to the fact, I was an Anthropology Major in university.  I especially love trying out home cooking from other cultures, like the Vietnamese Sweet and Sour soup I talked about in my last Current Favourites.  A few weeks ago, I got to try Pão de Queijo, which is a Brazilian cheese bread.  They are like the size of little cream puffs, but they kind of remind me of cheese scones, which I love.  They have a crispy exterior and are chewy on the inside from the tapioca flour.  When I start, I can’t stop eating them!

Touch

I could not really think of anything for this category, so I am going to cheat a little.  Instead of talking about something I felt, I am going to talk about my favourite feeling.  I have really loved the feeling of wearing lipstick.  Since I couldn’t really wear eye makeup when I had shingles, I resorted to playing up my blush, contour, and lips.  It was through this experience that I started to understand the power of lipstick!  It really can make a look “pop.”  I’ve been so into it that I bought my first lipliner ever, the Bite Beauty Lip Pencil.  Since I loved their lipsticks, getting their lipliner was a no-brainer.  So far, I have found them to be pigmented and easy to draw with.  Still need to continue practicing though.

Sound

For me, sound is usually a music favourite.  I either come by new music from the radio or from Spotify, and lately I have been loving Solange.  I am a latecomer in getting to know Solange’s music, but I loved “Cranes in the Sky” the first time I heard it.  It actually won a Grammy for Best R & B Performance last weekend!  Other than this song, I also love “Don’t Touch My Hair,” which talks about being proud of your own hair.  Her voice is very soothing and soulful.

Review: Milk Makeup Coverage Duo (a.k.a., The Re-Review After Reading the Instructions)

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Disclaimer:  I had written most of this review and realized while reading about the product on their website that I had not used it properly.  I thought the liquid concealer was meant to be used under the eyes, but it can also be used all over the face, almost like a lightweight foundation.

As a beauty blogger, you innately start developing criteria when you review products.  Eyeshadows need to super pigmented.  Concealers should have good coverage and not crease.  These sort of become your baseline every time you start to review a product.  In the last few months, I have been using the Milk Makeup Coverage Duo in Light quite frequently, and I thought I was prepared to write a mediocre review.  The coverage of this concealer is not really high and it does crease a bit on me.  However, instead of just focusing on performance, I realized that this is actually an all-around good product.  Here are the reasons why:

The premise behind the brand is modern, and well, likable

Milk Makeup is trying to do something a little different and I commend them for that.  Just a little background on the company.  Milk Makeup is a branch of Milk, which is a cultural hub focusing on fashion, music, photography, art, and film in L. A.  The key premises behind the brand include: multi-use products, experimentation and self-expression, minimal preservatives (this is not considered green beauty though) and cruelty-free, best ingredients, minimal preservatives, and high concept low maintenance.  I mean, there really isn’t anything not to like!  Basically, the brand is saying if you are a a trendy, modern, cool girl, you should be wearing their makeup and who doesn’t want to be that?

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The packaging is innovative

I don’t think I’ve ever seen another beauty product with this type of packaging.  Housed in a flat Tic-Tac-sized container, one end has a rollerball applicator for the liquid concealer, and the other end is a removable container for the marshmallow-textured cream concealer.  The rollerball is quite cooling and quick to apply under the eyes.  The packaging is also super portable.  It is slim enough that it would easily fit into a pocket and a purse for touchups.  The liquid concealer is meant for your face, while the cream concealer is for extra coverage.

The formula absorbs quickly and is moisturizing

Other than the portability, one of the things that this product has going for it, is the texture. Applied all over the face, this liquid concealer sinks in quickly and leaves your skin glowy and moisturized.   I can put on a couple layers for more coverage and there is no problem with the product looking cakey.  Likewise, the marshmallow cream concealer basically “melts” into the skin and never looks too cakey.

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It is so fast and convenient to use

The rollerball makes it super quick to apply your base in the morning.  You just roll a few streaks over your face and then dab it in.  I mean, the rollerball is a bit small, so I might consider getting their Sunshine Skin Tint, which has a bigger rollerball applicator.  It is also super convenient to just flip the product around and dab the cream concealer under your eyes and over any other areas where you might need more coverage.  Most importantly, it is just such a great on-the-go product for touchups and just applying your makeup wherever you want.

Hmm…so here are the reasons why you might be “iffy” about buying this concealer

As I mentioned, this concealer has pretty light coverage.  It won’t entirely cover up dark under eye circles or redness from acne.  However, it can built to a medium coverage without ever getting too cakey if layered.  However, I do find both concealers do crease after of few hours of application under the eyes.  The cream concealer definitely works better under the eyes compared to the liquid one which creases even faster.  On the face though, I find that it works great as a light to medium foundation, and lasts for most of a workday.  Whenever I do a quick checkup of my makeup in the mirror, I have happy with how my skin looks.  My skin looks even without looking too made up, if you know what I mean.  It does get a bit too oily for me on my T-Zone, so I wouldn’t recommend it for someone with oily skin.

VERDICT:  I think it is a great everyday foundation and concealer, but I think where it shines is its convenience and portability.

Second Look: Makeup Products that Have Grown on Me

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They say “you only have one chance to make a first impression.”  This may be true in a job interview.  However, over the years, I have found that this is not always true.  I feel that once you get past the initial impression, and dig a little deeper, you often find beauty in someone.  Okay, I think I might be going overboard with this analogy, but the three makeup products I am going to talk about in this blogpost were definitely love at second sight.

Sulwhasoo Evenfair Perfecting Cushion in No. 23

Initial Impressions:  I bought this over the summer, and the colour was too light.  The texture also was quite thick and started to break up and go patchy on my skin after a few hours.

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Second Look:  I just couldn’t give up on this product mostly because it had been raved about so much online.  Not to mention it was also quite pricey, and included a refill as well.  I figured I couldn’t give it away yet before trying it one more.  I am so glad I did because once winter hit the shade was perfect for me!  It really did create a flawless coverage while concealing blemishes, wrinkles, and fine lines.  For a Korean cushion foundation, it is not actually super glowy.  I would say it gives a natural skin finish.

To combat the thick texture, I found out it was much better to apply two thin layers instead of one thick one. I usually take a small dab and dot it around the face before I stamp it into my face.  It says that it lasts 12 hours on the website, but I feel this is a base that looks best on initial application.  It gets a little dry and fine lines start making an appearance at around the 6-8 hour mark.  That perhaps why it is considered a portable foundation so you can touch up on-the-go.    One last thing I really enjoy about this cushion is that the puff is beige so it never looks extremely dirty because the colour of the product matches the puff.

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Verbena

First Impressions: This is a bit of a cheat, but I had to return the original Bite Beauty lipsticks (I don’t remember if they had a name) due to the strong scent that lingered after application.  I loved everything else about the lipstick, except the scent was making me physically ill.

IMG_0076.JPGSecond Look: One day, while visiting Sephora again, I saw that they had put out their Amuse Bouche collection, and really wanted to give them a try again since I really enjoyed the formula minus the scent.  I was super happy to find out that this time around the scent was derived from freshly pressed grapefruit, lemon, lime, tangelo, mint, and mandarin.  If there is one scent I can tolerate, it is citrus scents.  The mint still bothers me a little bit, but I love the product so much it is worth it.  The formula is so moisturizing even without a lip balm underneath.  I am amazed by how long these stay on the lips.  I mean, some of it comes off during eating, but there is still definitely some pigmentation left over after most meals.  I was reading on the website that pearl, silk, and red wine resveratrol prolong the wear of this lipstick.  That sure sounds super luxurious!

Paul & Joe Creamy Cheek Colour L001 (similar here)

First Impressions:  I hesitate to put this product into this post as it was part of a limited edition set, but I have been using so much the last few months I decided to leave it in.  This was a lovely present from my best friend and I liked this blush when I got it.  However, the colour was really pigmented even if you used a sesame size amount, so I used it on and off during the year.  Plus, it was one of the blushes that might have caused some bumps to appear on my dry cheek area, so I put it on hold for a while.

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Second Look:  Fast forward to the last few months, and I’m using it like almost everyday.  It is not that anything changed about the product, it is just what I wanted out of my makeup recently has evolved.  Since I have been wearing less eye makeup, due to ocular shingles a few months ago, I have loved focusing on my cheeks and lips and this cheek colour just fits the bill.  It is pigmented and lasts all day.  It has a cream to powder finish which makes it a good backdrop for a glowy highlighter I am into lately.  Plus, I have found out that since I have been using more snail products, my cheeks have been more moisturized and I don’t have the problem with bumps on my cheeks. Hope this comes out again with another holiday set or I might have to consider getting their cream blusher, which is just as beautiful.