Sunday, December 26, 2010

Laura Mercier Eye Colour Sampler in action

I hope that everyone had/is still having a great time during the holidays - I'm experiencing a little case of food/chocolate hangover, but nothing that a few days of fruits and vegetables can't heal.

So, a few days ago (it's actually more like 2 weeks, can't believe how time flies!) I wrote this post about the Laura Mercier Eye Colour Sampler palette and I promised that I would post some photos of the eye makeup that I did using this palette so here we go:

Firstly, the eye makeup that I've been wearing a lot lately:
For this I've used the following products:
- Becca Eye Tint in Baroque (medium beige, love this)
- Laura Mercier eye shadow in Latte on the lid
- Laura Mercier eye shadow in Chocolate in the crease, the outer v and a little bit on the lower lashline
- Bobbi Brown gel eyeliner in Black Ink along the upper lashline
- Clinique High Impact mascara in Black (probably my favourite mascara)

And another photo of my eye closed, you can really see how gorgeous and shimmery these two shades are:
Now, onto the second eye makeup look that I did - my sister (who usually doesn't wear any makeup at all) asked me to try some of the colours on her so I was more than happy to do it:

Sparkly!
For this I've used the following products
- Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadow in Honey Bunny (a light beige)
- Laura Mercier eye shadow in Mica on the lid - as you can see, the fallout was horrible
- Laura Mercier eye shadow in Ultra Violet over the Mica shade and lightly on the lower lashline
- Bobbi Brown eyeliner in Black Ink on the upper lash line (and I've put some Mica eye shadow over it, which looks rather nice)
- Clinique Lash Doubling mascara in Black


One last look at the palette:

The colours used were (from the left): Chocolate (2), Latte (3), Ultra Violet (5), Mica (7)

By the way, this palette is now 50% off on the Liberty website which in my opinion is a great deal!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Tis the season for online shopping...

I know that you all probably already have the gifts bought and wrapped (I dont' yet!). However, there are still some great offers when it comes to holiday online shopping, so I thought that I would just put some of the more interesting ones in this post. So if you are brave enough and you want to try your luck with the post, you might want to check out these online shops:

- Ormonde Jayne is offering free worldwide shipping with orders over 60 GBP, code: SANTA
(valid until 20 December 2010);
- Beautique is having their own Beauty Advent Calendar - each day until Christmas they have different gifts with every purchase;
- Beauty Bay is also having their own Christmas Advent Calendar - every day until Christmas they have special offers, competitions etc.;
- Ellis Faas is offering free worldwide shipping for every order
(valid: December 2010);
- Serge Lutens offers complimentary shipping with all orders over 79€
(valid until 23 December 2010).

I really like that quite a few webshops are offering free worldwide shipping and not just let's say free UK shipping - Zuneta is also a great website when it comes to this because they always have free shipping for international  orders over a certain amount.

I think I may have to take advantage of the free shipping on Serge Lutens - Chergui just happens to be 79€ and I fell in love with it thanks to a lovely blogger Ines who sent me a sample, so thank you Ines for getting me hooked!

So, is anyone else left with last-minute shopping madness or am I the only one?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Laura Mercier Eye Colour Sampler


I'm a sucker for palettes and the holiday season is probably the best time to snap them up as there is such a huge range of all these limited edition gifts out there and they are usually a very good value comparing to the regular prices of the brands.
So when I was in London last month (sigh…) I knew I wanted to try the Laura Mercier's Oil-free foundation so the SA at the counter at Liberty's tried it on me and then did my eyes with the limited edition palette Eye Colour Sampler (35GBP) and I was sold!

In the palette you get a dual-ended eyeshadow brush and 8 teeny-tiny eyeshadows:
 
From left to right we have:
- Sparkling Dew (sateen): a light shimmery champagne
- Chocolate (luster): a darker smoky brown
- Latte (luster): a metallic golden brown
- Pink Tulip (sateen): a light shimmery pink
- Ultra Violet (luster): the name says it all really, a beutiful violet/purple with a bluish sheen
- Pink Copper (sequin): again, Pink Copper is pink + copper sparkle
- Mica (luster):a silver (I'm not giving it a better description because I hate it!)
- Black Ice (sequin): silver and teal sparkles in a black base

And now onto some swatches (the swatching hand was kindly borrowed by my sister)
 
My favourites are the browns, Chocolate and Latte - they have the best pigmentation and apply smoothly although I still have to use a primer to get the most out of them. The lightest colours Sparkling Dew and Pink Tulip are sort of boring in my opinion, but I rarely get excited over these pale colours so, moving on...


Now, Ultra Violet looks beautiful in the pan and when swatched but applied on the eyelid it is far too sheer - again, working with a cream shadow is a must. Pink Copper and Black Ice (both sequin finish) work best when applied over a cream base or over a liner, because they are, again very sheer but have a beautiful sparkle to them.

And last and certainly least here is Mica - swatched, it actually doesn't look that bad but the texture of this shadow is way too loose and there is a lot of fall-out (and consequently, there is now a lot of the silver dust all over the palette, great). 

The dual-ended brush that you get in the palette is ok: I like the smudger end because it's just stiff enough but the eye colour end does not work well with powder eyeshadows because it's not dense enough. However, it works pretty well with cream shadows. 

One last thing (I'll shut up, I promise!): each eyeshadow weighs 0.4 g - yes, zero point four grams, it's not a mistake. For comparison, the full-size Laura Mercier eyeshadow weighs 2.6 g. Of course, with the palette you are getting a selection of 8 eyeshadows and I have to say that I love the Chocolate Latte and the sparkly Pink Copper and Black Ice for layering.

Overall I wouldn't say that I'm disappointed with it I just wish that all the shadows were of a high quality and more pigmented.

This week I will hopefully post some photos of the eye makeup that I did this weekend using this palette so you'll be able to see what the colours look like in action.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

I'm a Klutz - Chapter II

I told you there was more, didn't I?

Meet today's beauty: Stila Precious Pearl Palette


Now, let's see the what the pearl inside really looks like:



Do you see something missing? Oh, yes, maybe some bits from the highlighter colour on the far left and of course, there used to be a beautiful olive-gold shadow on the far right. My excuse is that the Stila eyeshadows are just so very soft. The bathroom tiles of course had nothing to do with it...

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Clinique Cream Shaper Eyeliners




Clinique is mostly known for its skincare, especially for the infamous 3-step system which didn't really work out for me as it was far too harsh for my skin (you can read more about my experience with the toner here). I think that because of the 3-step system some of the products from the »general« skincare range and the makeup products can sometimes be overlooked.

One of my favourite Clinique products are their Cream Shaper Eyeliners. The two double ended pencils that you see in the above photo were actually part of the Clinique Holiday sets that usually consist of a full-size mascara, double-ended pencil and eye makeup remover. I think that the best selling shade from the Cream Shaper range is Egyptian, a blackened green/gold. The Egyptian is on my wishlist but for now I have the following colours:

From  left to right we have: Starry Plum (06), Chocolate Lustre (05), Cocoa Shimmer (15)

Starry Plum is a beautiful purple with a blue sheen to it (and it makes green/hazel eyes, wait for it, wait for it...: "pop"), Chocolate Lustre is a deep chocolate brown with bronze shimmer and Cocoa Shimmer is a medium taupe with a silvery metallic finish to it. The Cocoa Shimmer is very subtle as an eyeliner but works very well as a base.
They are all beautiful colours, very long-lasting, soft but not as smudgy as the Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliners.
These eyeliners are currently my favourites and I just wish that they would release even more colours.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Ormonde Jayne Ormonde Woman


For my birthday last year one of the gifts I received was the Ormonde Jayne Discovery set – a set of samples of all the Ormonde Jayne perfumes presented in a beautiful sleek black box. The only Ormonde Jayne perfume that I had tried before that was Ta'if  and I loved it so my expectations were definitely high. The scent from this sample set that I wanted to try the most was Ormonde Woman – I actually didn't think that I would really love it because from the other online reviews and the list of notes I was a bit intimidated by it and I asumed that it would be too spicy, too woody, just too much in every single way. But it is not too much, it is just enough.

When I first tried Ormonde Woman I was taken by surprise – usually, when testing a fragrance I would try to decypher it, think of the notes that are composing it (even though I'm not very good at pinpointing seperate notes). But Ormonde Woman for me is one of those scents that don't make me think of seperate notes that are defining the fragrance – it's just a beautiful and efortless composition.

Ormonde Woman manages to somehow find the perfect balance: the spices and the woody notes never get overpowering, the warmth of the amber base is counteracted with a subtle crispiness of the violet. and the end effect is very smooth, almost oily. I find it very hard to describe and obviously I cannot do tis beauty any justice.  

Here is the full list of notes (as listed on the Ormonde Jayne website):
Top: Cardamom, coriander and grass oil
Heart: Black hemlock, violet and jasmine absolute
Base: Vetiver, cedar wood, amber and sandalwood

However, with Ormonde Woman the whole is certainly greater than the sum of its parts, even though the parts are such gorgeous ingredients as amber,cardamom, violet and vetitver.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

My London Report

Hello, Big Ben!
I had a great time in London and I think that my previous post deserves a part 2, so here it is. Unfortunatelly, this time around there was no Johnny Depp anywhere close but there were plenty of other things to keep us interested.
We arrived at our hotel on Friday evening after a two and a half hour drive from London Stansted airport with a London Express (ha, express, the irony!) bus. As we were so late we didn't have much time to do anything except go for a quick dinner and stroll around the Thames.

The following days were packed with sightseeing - the British Museum and Courtauld Galleries on Saturday, the Science Museum, the Natural History Museum and the Victoria & Albert Museum on Sunday, St. Pauls and Greenwich on Monday (and yes, a Paramore concert and no, I am not 15 years old) and then the Imperial War Museum and shopping on Tuesday. I was pleasantly surprised by how the mood was already so christmasy, decorations were everywhere and one of the pros for visiting London is that so many museums/galleries are free.

St. Paul's Cathedral
Fortunatelly, the weather was very nice! It was cold and quite windy at times but we only had to open our umbrellas once. The only problem was that on Tuesday afternoon I left my voice somewhere around Piccadilly Circus - so up until yesterday I was voiceless and cough-full. But, let's pretend that the glass is half full and I'm happy that I got sick at the end of our trip and not before.

A sunny afternoon in Greenwich
As I said, the last day was mainly supposed to be dedicated to shopping - we braved the Oxford Street and I have to say I was quite shocked and overwhelmed by all the stores, from Serlfridges, House of Fraser... so overwhelmed actually that I didn't get anything (reverse psychology or something). But, fortunatelly I did bring something from Liberty, Ormonde Jayne and the old faithful Duty Free at the airport.
I have to say that I loved Liberty - we've only been to the ground floor which is filled with makeup, skincare, accessories and perfumes. Everyone there was absolutely delightful and helpful, but not in any way pushy.
Also, I had a very pleasant expirenece at the L'Artisan Parfumeur shop in Covent Garden - the lady was very kind and helpful even though I didn't buy anything. 

So, here is the candy that made its way into my bag:

Mmm, candy!
From the top clockwise we have:
- Ormonde Jayne Ormonde Woman EdP (very excited to finally get my hands on a full bottle!)
- Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage in SC-2
- Bobbi Brown set of 2 gel eyeliners in Black Ink (matte black) and Sepia Ink (matte brown) plus a mini eyeliner brush
- Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Powder Pink
- MAC Viva Glam Cyndi
- Clarins Rouge Prodige in Raspberry Sorbet
- Laura Mercier Eye Colour Sampler
- Laura Mercier Oil-free foundation in Warm Ivory
- and the book that you see there is The Essence of Perfume by Roja Dove.

A better photo of some of the products
So, looking back at my winter wishlist I guess I was pretty good and I didn't stray far from it. Also, a week later I don't feel the buyer's remorse (you know, when you buy that bright blue eyeshadow that you know you will probably never wear). You can definitely expect to see the reviews of these products in the following weeks.

All in all, London was great and I would love to visit it again, but in the meantime I have the shiny and hectic December to look forward to which isn't bad at all.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

London


In just a few days (well as I didn't publish this before, it's actually already tomorrow, yipee) me and my boyfriend are flying to London for a short trip and honestly, I've been looking forward to it for months and of course, I've been in a planning mode for just as long and Maps Google definitelly became my new best friend.
The last time we were in London was last year's summer and the weather was absolutely fantastic: sunny, with just a few rain showers inbetween, to spice things up. I'm not really hoping for much sun this time around but since the weather here is just as bad these days it doesn't really matter.

So, what are we going to do in London? We're planning to visit the British Museum, the museums at the Exhibition Road, Courtauld Galleries, Imperial War Museum, go to a concert at the O2, buy some gifts for family and friends (any excuse to go to Hamley's will do!), swoon over a perfume store or two, see Johnny Depp*. You know, the usual...

And hopefully I will get at least a part of that Winter Wishlist in action so that I will have some new products to share with you when I get back in about a week. I hope you all have a great weekend as well!

Klara



*Last year when we were in London we walked past the Leicester Square on our last day of our trip and there was a premiere for Public Enemies (I didn't really like the movie, to be honest), and yes, there was Johnny Depp. And I kind of, sort of, maybe, hmm, like Johnny.


Saturday, November 6, 2010

Deborah Atomic Red Lacque in Red


Yes, the Atomic Red Lacque in Red is indeed red and it is one of the only two lip lacques/liquid lipsticks from Deborah's Fall collection - the other Lacque is Nude and it is, a shocker, a nude colour (a peachy warm nude, if you want). 
So, back to the Red: it a liquid lipstick in a small and sleek black packaging, a bit similar to the Chanel Rouge Allure Laques. It is a gorgeous medium neutral red, very pigmented and has a wonderfully smooth texture.
It smells very similar to the L'Oreal lipsticks and Bulgari's perfume Rose Esentielle - and although I am a fan of roses this soapy and sweet version is definitelly not a favourite of mine.
So, here is a little swatch of the Red for you:


And this is what it looks like on my lips:


I think that  it's a very easy red to wear - even though I love the look of red lipsticks I often find them hard to wear however, this one is easy to apply, completely opaque and has a lovely sheen. Perfect, right? I might have to check the Nude colour too although it didn't look nearly as interesting than the Red and I hope that Deborah releases more shades of this Lacque, Rose, Pink and Plum would be just perfect!

P.s.: Trying to photograph a decent lip swatch is a nightmare! 

Saturday, October 30, 2010

You've got Mail!

I really love getting packages in the mail and I'm always nagging my parents and my sister to check if I received anything new (sorry!).
So, a few weeks ago I received a gorgeous package from a lovely blogger Lipstick Luvvie at
She was having a giveaway and I won the following 



I have to state that there was also a Lindt chocolate in the package but I forgot to put it in the photo, ahem.

Look!

from left to right: Yodel me on my Cell, Lucerne-tainly look Marvelous and Color so hot it berns from Irre-Swiss-Ables mini set


Together with these 3 colours comes also a mini Rapid Dry Top Coat. 
They are really tiny, only 3.75 ml each while a regular full bottle of an OPI polish is 15 ml.
I have done some quick swatches of all three colours and my favourite was Lucerne-tainly look Marvelous - it's a gorgeous dark silvery grey with lots of green shimmer and it looks both elegant and a bit weird at the same time.

But my manicure of the day is the bright slightly warm red called Color so hot it berns:

2 coats of Color so hot it burns

In real life it's actually a bit darker, gorgeous colour!

Together with the nail polishes and chocolate Lipstick Luvvie kindly sent an OPI Verbena massage cream which I haven't tried yet, a mini nail file and the nicest little thing: a beautiful hand-made card that you can see in the first photo. So, Lipstick Luvvie thank you again very much for your gift!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Winter Wishlist



I thought of calling this an Autumn Wishlist, but since the morning temperatures have now been around 0 °C I think there's no point in denying it: the winter's coming. Time to find that perfect winter coat (which I never do), get a new pair of gloves (beacuse it seems that all gloves I had have gone missing) and time to write wishlists. I love making wishlists, crossing things off and re-arranging it so here is my Winter Wishlist

1. The beauty that you see in the above photo is Trish McEvoy Beauty Emergency Card for Eyes (30GBP). It just looks perfect, a lovely palette of 6 eyeshadows, an Eye Definer and a Brow Shaper – all the neutrals you could ever need (ha!) The fact that it’s so small makes it great for traveling, it would actually be perfect for my London trip in a few weeks.
Another item from Trish Mc Evoy that I find interesting is the Eye Base Essentials: vibrant, bright-eyed and crease-proof? Yes, please!

2. Bobbi Brown Holiday palettes
I'd like to have all of them, pretty please. The Bobbi Brights palette has 20 colourful but tiny eyeshadows for 45 GBP and the Day to Night palettes look very beautiful and useful. Of course, I wouldn't mind trying the famous Pot Rouge by Ms. Brown, so let's throw them on the wishlist as well (16.5 GBP). And her Gel Eyeliners for 15 GBP. That's all! Moving on…

3. Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill mascara (23 GBP)
There was a rave review of this mascara on www.facegoop.com and sometimes I do wish I could kill with my eyes. Sold!

4. Frederic Malle Carnal Flower (145 EUR)
I love this perfume but it's so expensive I could cry. But no, it's a beautiful big tuberose, that in my opinipn smells wonderful from fall to summer. It's 10 pm and I'm not going anywhere and I just sprayed some of this juicy goodness on my wrist and this is how much of the sample I have left.













I feel a tear coming up...
5. Ormonde Jayne Ormonde Woman (68 GBP)
Compared to the Carnal Flower this is almost a bargain! I have only a teeny tiny sample left and it's a beautiful waxy woody scent so a full bottle is what I see in the future.
I just sprayed some on my other wrist, ahh, beautiful!         

6. Laura Mercier Oil Free Foundation (32 GBP)
My skin is a sensitive and oily mess and this foundation has no perfume, no oils and no silicones, so I'm thinking that if this doesn't work, then nothing will.

8. a humidifier
This is a little bit random but allergies + dry, cold air are not a great combination, so it might be time to invest in a good humidifer.

There are tons of other stuff on my wishlist, from the entire range of Rouge Bunny Rouge eyeshadows and lipsticks, nail polishes, Tom Ford lipsticks but I think it might be time to stop now before I get a headache from calculating how much my wishlist is »worth«.

So, what's hiding on your wishlists?

The first photo is from www.trishmcevoy.com
 

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Clinique anti-blemish solutions clarifying lotion - a review



Meet the Devil... I mean, Clinique anti-blemish solutions clarifying lotion, step 2 of Clinique's infamous 3-step skincare system. Yes, it's a "system", so I guess it should work. Well, it doesn't.

The Story:
I don't know why I even bought it - I mean I knew that the toners from Clinique's regular line are full of alcohol so why should this one be any different. But this SA was going on and on about it and how it helped her son and I just couldn't listen to her so I bought it without checking the ingredient list.
The Ingredient List:
Number 1 on the ingredient list is aqua, also known as water and number 2 on the ingredient list is alcohol denat also known as alcohol. Of course that's not all it contains: there's also nylon, which apparently is a good absorber, salicylic acid, a nice "acne-fighter", witch hazel which means more alcohol, caffeine which is being highly advertised in anti-celulite products, so it will definitely help if you have celulite around your blemishes (You don't? That's weird!). There are also some other ingredients in there but they don't sound nearly as interesting.
Basically, with these kind of ingredients you could either
a) make a killer potion - one sip and bye, bye internal organs, or
b) of course, an obvious choice, make a toner for your face!
The Positive:
- I like the colour,
- if I have a cold I just have a sniff of this stuff and it gets better in an instant.
The Negative:
- it burns,
- it made my skin flaky, irritated, red, dry...
- ... and it didn't help with the blemishes (however, I was only using it for a while as it really made my skin worse and it just didn't seem to be worth the effort).

This toner is in my opinion awful and the only thing from the 3-step system that I actually like is their Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel.

I blame it on the SA!

(Update) Full Ingredients List: Water, Alcohol Denat, Nylon-12, Salicylic Acid, Butylene Glycol, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel), Laminaria Saccharina Extract, Caffeine, Sucrose, Glycerin, Acetyl Glucosamine, Sorbitol, Sea Whip Extract, Barium Sulfate, 10-Hydro-Xydecanoic Acid, Silica, Disodium Edta, Benzal, Konium Chloride.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I'm a Klutz - Chapter I











Oh, look at this beauty! I wonder what's inside...















The victim in question is a blush from Rouge Bunny Rouge in the colour Orpheline. It's a really gorgeous colour, even when broken (but of course, not very suitable for travelling now).
And unfortunatelly, this is one of those "to be continued" posts...

Monday, October 4, 2010

Hello, Fall!


There are things that I absolutely love about Fall: the fall(ing) leaves, the deep colours, the fall sun. The fact that my birthday is in fall of course helps a lot. What I don't love however, is the fall rain, the freezing temperatures when Ms. Fall thinks of turning into Ms. Winter much too soon, the cold mornings, the shorter days, the fog.. So, I like good-weather-fall and hate bad-weather-fall (I know, it's amazing!).
But, every year I'm looking forward to fall because I am able to wear the heavy duty perfumes that at least for me usually just don't feel right in the summer - sometimes just a thought of a huge amber scent in the middle of 30+ °C makes me want to puke. But now I can dig out the ambers, the woods, those perfumes that don't really smell like a combination of notes, but more like one huge, comforting note of warmth and coziness. Just what I need in this cold.

Ormonde Woman will make its first appearance this season very soon (but I only have two samples, so a full bottle is deffinitely on my London wishlist), Kenzo Amour Le Parfum will be my comfort in a bottle this year as well and Parfums MDCI Enlevement au Serail will come back out of its box with a bang. And a little bit of L'Artisan's Safran Troublant which always reminds me of the book/movie Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. Perhaps only because I started getting into perfumes, read the book (and later watched the movie) and bought my Safran at about the same time. Who would have thought that saffron and rose could make such a compelling combination?

And now, a little "artistic" photo of Neroli by L'Occitane which I like a lot (I mean, it's orange blossom+amber). I have to give credit to my sister for this artsy fartsy :)













(Wow, I really love these brackets, don't I?)

The first photo is a mini of Oscar de La Renta's Volupte.

Monday, September 27, 2010

The First Post


Writing this first post feels a bit odd and awkward so I will just keep it short and simple – basically, I just want to write about what I like – from perfume, makeup to books, movies and food (wasabi in particular:) and of course also about things that I don't really like, so it's not all flowers and sunshine here (although I have nothing against flowers or sunshine, just to be clear). I think it will deffinitely be a big challenge for me, especially as I'm not very handy with computers and I, well my boyfriend, has a crappy camera and English is not my first language. But, let's keep things on the positive side: I'm really looking forward to try blogging and hope to have a real post prepared in the following days. And of course, a special thanks to my lovely follower, Nika - I can tell that you're an awesome person and I would love to meet you one day ;)

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