Unboxing: Vanity Trove May 14

I don’t subscribe to beauty boxes on a regular basis but recently I saw a few items that caught my eyes, and decided to get one! I get to select 6 samples that I want from a pool of available items – and there are a few full size items to choose from as well, with some surprise extras thrown in. As the photo shows, there are quite a few surprise extras! So what do I have in this box?

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Haul: A Little Pixi Love

Recently I saw on Pixi’s instagram that they were having a sale and I immediately hopped over to their website and bought a few items.

I’ve heard so much about the Glow Tonic, that I picked up 2 – also because I needed to hit a minimum amount to qualify for free shipping. I saw a few mini-sized items which I thought was a fantastic idea to try something new so I bought them as well, and they are the Flawless Vitamin Veil Foundation in No 1 Fair (only 3g) and the Flawless Beauty Primer (only 12ml). The jewel like eyeshadow palette – the Mesmerizing Mineral Palette caught my eye and I picked one up in Emerald Gold, full of browns and greens.

Shipping took about 2.5 weeks to reach Singapore from the UK, which I thought was reasonable. I’m so excited to try these out! Have you tried anything from Pixi, or did you pick up anything from the sale as well?

Review: Bioderma Sebium H2O Solution Micellaire

Wanted to do a quick review on these – the Bioderma Sebium H2O Solution Micellaire. I recently got this from a Sample Store haul and have been using regularly. I’ve used the Bioderma Sensibio H2O Solution Micellaire for a while, and was curious to see if the Sebium version is any different.

Claims from website:
BIODERMA innovation, Sébium H2O gently cleanses the skin without drying it, through the micro-emulsion of impurities and excess sebum. Enriched with purifying active ingredients, Sébium H2O cleanses the epidermis in depth and regulates secretion of sebum.

These originally comes in a large flip top transparent bottle, without a pump. Mine are samples so they look different. Honestly it would be great if it was sold in these sample packaging as they are so handy for travel!

Unlike Sensibio version which is completely transparent and colorless, this Sebium range is also transparent but green-tinged. This also has a slight floral/fresh scent. The texture feels just like water.

Like other micellaire waters, to use – I pour some on cotton pads and wipe it over my face. No rinsing is required and it doesn’t leave an oily film behind. In terms of efficacy, this is quite good; it removes face makeup easily without having to rub or tug on the skin. However, I find it difficult to remove eye makeup and needless to say terrible at removing waterproof mascara.

The Sebium version is targeted for oily skin – I have dry skin so this was obviously not targeted to me but I thought how different could cleansing solutions be? Now I know – yes they can be very different. After using this, my skin felt dry and dehydrated. My skin does feel very clean but also very tight so I think oily skin ladies might really enjoy this.

The price ranges quite a fair bit in Singapore – I’ve seen it selling for $29.90 in Guardian for the 250ml bottle, but it’s also regularly on sale.

Would I repurchase? No, because this is not suitable for my skin type at all. I’ve reviewed other cleansing waters and they can be found here. I know it’s unfair to give this a low rating when it’s targeted at a different skin type all together, so I want to emphasize the rating is for Dry Skin – just in case any Dry Skin ladies out there is just as curious as me and wants to give it a go!

Rating: 2/5 for Dry Skin

Review: Marc Jacobs Style Eye-con No. 7 in 208 The Vamp

A recent trip to Sephora brought this gorgeous baby back home with me – the Marc Jacobs Style Eye-con No. 7 in 208 The Vamp. This retails for S$90, but I did have some gift vouchers (courtesy of the bf) which I used on it, so it felt a lot more affordable as I only ended up paying S$40. But was this worth the S$90 and would I pay the full price for it?
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Final Swatch #5: MUA Immaculate Collection

An item that has been collecting dust is the MUA Immaculate Collection palette – an eyeshadow palette that is filled with 24 shades, as well as come in different textures. The pigmentation is pretty good and the texture nice and smooth for the shimmery shades, but lacklustre on the matte ones – they’re very sheer, hard and very hard to pick up any colour or blend.

I find myself barely reaching for this palette as the nice shimmer shades are also the louder colours – like bright blue and pinks – which I don’t really wear on a normal daily basis. Plus there are way too many blue shades in one palette – I don’t like blue eyeshadow on me. I did like the few shimmery brown shades, but I have too many of these anyway.

So it’s once again, a goodbye to another eyeshadow palette. I would recommend this for anyone looking for a nice shimmery eyeshadow palette though; it’s just not for me. This now belongs to a friend with a penchant for bright makeup looks – I’m glad it won’t be neglected anymore.

Midweek Peek #9: Smelling Good

I like to be prepared for all emergencies and sometimes the “emergencies” include having to smell good – it could have been a long day and the bf suddenly calls to meet for dinner; can’t be smelling foul or stale can I? So I often keep a few vials of perfume on me – luckily I don’t sweat much, so deodorant is not really something that I have to bother with.

A couple of perfume vials that I have currently on me – Dior Addict Eau Delice, Roses de Chloe and a decanted The Body Shop Japanese Cherry Blossom Body Mist. I’m not really very picky about what scents I carry on the go, unless they smell really horrid (duh!) as I really only use them as a quick smell-refresher but I do have a preference for floral and fruity scents.

Do you bring along perfume with you on the go as well?

Review: IOPE Air Cushion XP SPF50+/PA+++ in N23

I’ve been using this product for quite a while but procrastinated on writing a review for it because I have too many thoughts on this product – the IOPE Air Cushion XP in shade N23; it took me quite a while to piece my thoughts together and I really wanted to put everything down. So if you’re interested in this product, I hope you will take the time to read through the whole post, because be warned, it will be very long!
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Review: Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentrè

The Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentrè claims to be a 24-Hour Miracle Cream and a “must have product for makeup artists, models and celebrities”. I first found out about this product from one of my favourite youtubers – the Pixiwoo sisters, and after many months of contemplating whether or not to order this online for an exorbitant price, I found it during my Japan holiday trip for a reasonable price.

Claims on website:
A cult favorite that has found its way onto countless photo shoots, television and film sets internationally. This creamy lotion is three products in one: primer, moisturizer, and make-up remover. Its formula remains extremely simple and effective with nourishing ingredients that restores the skin’s natural glow and gives a boost to tired dehydrated skin.

The packaging is very simple; in a squeeze tube. I personally prefer squeeze tubes or pump bottles for skincare products, than jars, as they’re a lot easier to carry around and more hygienic. It’s also a small thing but I am anal like that and it somehow makes me really happy – that the tube keeps its squeezed shape after being squeezed. It annoys me when squeeze tubes reflate back to its original state after being squeezed!

The cream is rather rich and creamy. I use a pea size amount to cover my entire face, and I find it really soothing for my dry skin. It doesn’t irritate my skin at all but does take a couple of minutes to fully sink in; I would think that it’s quite heavy because I can still feel it on my skin after leaving it for a while, but feels so comforting when my skin is tight and dry. It’s not too thick or oily though; I find it perfectly fine to put on makeup after using this even in hot climate – it doesn’t cause my makeup to shift.

The product does contain mineral oil, which is a topic of controversy; I’m not a scientist so I won’t comment on that – all I know is I have no reaction to it. But if you’re particular about ingredients, then this is something to note. I also think that because of its thickness, it might not be suitable for oily skin.

Does it live up to its hype? I’m quite on the fence for this – I think it worked really well and lived up to its claims, especially at its regular price. My dry and dehydrated skin feels so comfortable with this on, and amazingly it worked well beneath my makeup. But because of the hype, I always expect more – above and beyond its claims, which I think is not fair to the product. I would definitely repurchase this if I can find it at a reasonable price again.

Rating: 4/5

Haul: Looking Fantastic

A quick little haul – a case of midnight boredom, half conscious and itchy fingers led to a quick clicking of the “buy” button, which was quickly and clearly forgotten by the next morning. Then came shock nearly a month later when a box of goodies from Lookfantastic.com came. Oh dear.

Thankfully the damage was not very big but a really weird mix of items. A Lipstick Queen lipstick in Stoked, such a gorgeous sheer orange red that I think was a genius buy for summer; another lip product was also in the bag – the Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm in Pixi Pink, which I have yet to try.

Following all that was a pack of Elemis FreshSkin Make-up Away Cleansing Wipes and a Kent Shampoo and Massage Brush; I’m amused that I bought these but glad that I did – cleansing wipes are always useful to have around and a good head/hair massage should help to ease the headaches that I have been having of late.

That’s all for my little haul – have you bought any beauty items lately?

Review: Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque

Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque is a very popular and highly raved about mask online. I hunted it down before it was available in Singapore so I paid an exorbitant price for it, but Watsons have since brought it in stores, which makes it so much more convenient and affordable.

The mask comes in a simple plastic squeeze tube, which I think is pretty practical for the product that it houses. Because the masque is rather thick and stiff, a squeeze tube really makes it much easier to get to the product.

The mask itself is a green thick paste; to use, I smear it all over my face and leave it there for 15-20 minutes, which by then will dry down to a much drier and tighter cracked version, followed by some lukewarm water to wash it off. The minty scent is rather strong so if you’re opposed to that, take note.

On me, I find it way too drying. Maybe it wasn’t a great idea to use a clay-based mask on my dry skin, but I’ve tried other clay-based masks and none of them made my skin feel so dry and devoid of any moisture.

I also really don’t find that it unclogs my pores that much. It does dry some of the smaller pimples and whiteheads, and makes my skin feel really clean afters but that might be a psychological effect from the tingling sensation.

I’m finding it really hard to put a rating on this because part of my not-so-good experience is also due to product suitability – I think the moral of the story is understand your own skin type before buying every hyped-up product out there; I should have known when all the reviews mentioned it to be great for “mattifying” (I am naturally matte) and “absorbing oil”.

But if you have dry skin like me, I would say stay away from this; there are other more effective clay masks that are non drying. One that I really love is the Aesop Parsley Seed Cleansing Mask – reviewed here.

Rating: 2.5/5 on Dry skin