Last December I cleaned out all of my old stashes, and discovered to my horror many more products that I had been hoarding to death. And so I started this year on a mission to clear them out once and for all before starting on entirely new products. As you can see below, it has been a very satisfactory quarter, and I’m excited to recap for you below!
I permed my hair in January, so it is a short wavy bob now, and I had forgotten how much work permed hair requires. So, there are ALOT of hair products this time around.
PHS Hairscience is a homegrown brand from Singapore that uses a research-driven approach towards formulating its products to support healthy hair growth. The brand started out as a hairspa, and has since branched out into an extensive range of products for every hair concern. I had the opportunity to try out their Repair range for hair that has been damaged by chemical processes (me me me!), and the Colour Care range. I love that PHS Hairscience products are formulated without parabens, benzophenone and mineral oil, and are hypoallergenic. However, much as I love to embrace and support local brands, neither of the ranges really got me in love. I found the textures to be heavy and not as fine as I’d like, and did not leave my hair soft afterwards. Over time, my scalp also started getting quite irritated and itchy.
Philip Kingsley Elasticizer is a deluxe sample from one of the Lookfantastic Beauty Boxes and works like a booster mask. Apply it to damp hair, leave on for 2-3min, then rinse off and continue with shampoo and conditioner. It has a heavy enveloping texture, but it applies well, and after shampoo and conditioner, leaves my hair bouncy and soft! I love that it doesn’t take too much time, and is so easy to use.
Goldwell Kerasilk [reviewed here] is a really intensive treatment hair oil, and it’s filled with wonderful ingredients for repairing damaged hair. I only apply it to my hair ends and a tiny pearl-sized drop is all I need, so this bottle has lasted me a very long time.
Verb Sea Spray is great for defining my curls, giving that loose beach wave look. Loved it so much, I almost used it all up within weeks but then the nozzle broke which was really disappointing.
Ouai Texturizing Hair Spray is nice for defining curls, but it left them hard and crunchy which is not ideal. Maybe I’m not using this right because there are lots of great reviews on sephora, but I don’t particularly find this holds styles well.
Percy & Reed Wonder Treatment Oil is one that I’ve been trying to empty for a very long time. It’s less oily than the Goldwell Kerasilk, and is probably one of the best hair oil that I’ve used!
I’m generally not as particular with body products… as long as they don’t smell off-putting, and don’t cause my eczema-prone skin to flare up. So it seems like a hodge-podge mix here, with the aim of binning as many as I can.
Regenerate Enamel Science Advanced Toothpaste is a deluxe sample that I received in one of those Lookfantastic beauty boxes and immediately put to use. It uses NR-5™ technology which forms a fresh supply of the same mineral tooth enamel is made of, restoring the high mineral content and protective function of tooth enamel with regular use. I love that it strengthens and protects teeth against cavities by restoring the enamel’s mineral content. It even claims to whiten teeth! However, when I use my usual portion and brush using my regular speed and strength, I found an intense heat sensation that permeates my gums into my jaw. Depending on how much toothpaste and how hard I brush, the heat can get so intense it actually hurts. The feeling goes away after rinsing, but there is definitely a lot of getting used to if you are intent on picking this one up. For me, it wasn’t a pleasant experience and will probably not subject my teeth to this again.
Spa Esprit Custom-Blend Shower Gel is an old product and I don’t think they are offering it anymore on their site. The idea was rather clever – pick your choice of essential oil and mix it in an unscented shower gel for your own customized relaxing spa-like experience at home! I think I picked a geranium blend, and even after storing for more than 2 years, it still smelled good each time I used it.
Molton Brown Jasmine & Sun Rose Bath & Shower Gel is part of a deluxe set from Christmas and it smells sooooo good! I can see why there are so many fans of Molton Brown, I want to stock them in every bathroom in my home!
Sabon Body Scrub is one of the brand’s cult-favorites and I can see why! It is a salt-scrub that comes mixed with a luxuriously moisturizing body oil. The salt scrub can sting if you have open wounds, and the granules do feel somewhat coarse. However, they dissolve quickly on damp skin, and are very effective at exfoliating. The oil infusion softens and pampers skin, leaving my skin feeling so good afterwards! This Patchouli Lavender Vanille scent is surprisingly not lingeringly heavy, but it does lift up into a fragrant steam when washed under warm shower.
Hysses Verbena Rose Hand Cream is a Singapore brand that changed name a couple of years ago, it used to be called Mt. Sapola. To be honest, I’m not a fan of the brand, and this hand cream is so overpoweringly scented, I had a hard time forcing myself to use it up. The texture is heavy and it does not quite soften and treat my eczema-prone dry hands.
The Body Shop British Rose Petal-Soft Hand Cream is a lovely rose scent, not powdery grandma rose, but a light young rose. The texture is lighter than Hysses above, though not quite as moisturizing as its name implies.
The staple of my beauty arsenal… I obviously love skincare and use plenty of them on a daily basis. This has been extremely satisfying and poignant to me because I said my final goodbyes to some products that have been sitting far too long in storage half-used. I’m really glad they have not gone bad yet because I really hate to waste. Given the large number of products here, I am going to discuss them by categories in the order that I would use them.
Shu UemuraUltime8∞ Sublime Beauty Cleansing Oil is a returning feature, I love it to bits, you can see my review here.
Shiseido Future Solution LX Extra Rich Cleansing Foam & Concentrate Balancing Softener sat far too long in my stash mainly because there was always something newer and sexier to try, and I was worried this line would be far too rich for my skin. On hindsight Japanese skincare are designed to be used holistically, and the cleansers are typically designed to be very thorough so as to allow maximum absorption of the ensuing products. And in that regard, this cleansing foam performs perfectly on point, leaving my skin perfectly clean without over-stripping it. The softener feels crisp and helps remove dead skin cells whilst rebalancing the skin. The more I used these 2, the more I loved them and was sad to finally see them go. They are priced at a slight premium, and I recommend you use them with a richer routine of serums and moisturizers.
Shiseido The Skincare Purifying Mask is a recurring feature in my skincare line-up so I will not go into details anymore. It is a reliable, affordable and fast weekly deep-cleanse that respects sensitive dry skin; and can be used overnight as a spot treatment as well!
Lancôme Bi-facil Eye Makeup Remover was past of a Christmas trove from eons ago that I uncovered. As you all know, my HG is Chanel, but I hate to waste, so for the past 3 months I had dedicated myself to this Lancôme. I’m not usually fussy about makeup removers and cleansers, but everytime I stray from Chanel, I remember why it is my HG. To its merits, this Lancôme removes all traces of eye makeup and my triple layers of mascara perfectly. However, it also stings my eyes and causes the skin around my lids to itch. It is priced the same as the Chanel, so I will not be repurchasing.
Albion Skin Conditioner is one of the brand’s hero products and it functions as an exfoliating toner. I started using it years ago and put it aside as I found it too strong for my liking back then. Surprisingly after resuming it now, I found it a gentler alternative to the Pixi Glow Tonic, albeit much pricier. If you like exfoliating toners, and have a pretty dime to spare, you should check this one out. You can also put it in a small purse spray and use it to refresh throughout the day.
Pixi Rose Tonic has emerged as 1 of my favourite soothing hydrating toners this spring. It smells beautiful, and feels so comforting on the skin… this is a must-try for budget babes and luxury lovers alike!
Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Facial Toner on the other hand is pricey and not altogether what its name implies. At first try, I found it stung my skin. As I progress with the bottle, it becomes increasingly difficult to get the lotion out as the (very dead looking) petals clog up the tiny hole at the top. There is still a little bit left but it has become impossible to get any lotion out so I am ditching this. Not my favourite piece of this otherwise lovely line.
Serums & Moisturizers:
Albion Excia Whitening Brilliancy Serum is a recent addition to my skincare routine, and I LOVE IT! Just as with most other Japanese skincare, you don’t expect to see overnight transformation because they don’t use harsh acids to achieve brightening results. Instead Albion uses a stable form of kojic acid which goes deeper and blocks formation of tyrosine which in turn prevents melanin (aka dark spots). This serum has a lovely milky texture that is quite light and yet hydrating, and since I have stopped going for my regular laser treatments for almost half a year now, this Albion Excia Whitening Brilliancy Serum has helped me maintain a spot-free complexion. Prevention is always better than cure, so I highly recommend you try this out!
Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Face Serum is quite unlike its sister above, and I found this a pleasing, fuss-free product to use. It has a crisp, light texture that gets absorbed immediately and allows me to layer on other serums and moisturizers at will.
Clarins Multi-Active Day Moisturizer [reviewed here] is an old friend and I’ve always enjoyed using it. Easy, fuss-free is the best way to go!
Sunscreens & others:
La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL Ultra-Light is indeed ultra light. I love the fragrance-free formulation that packs a comprehensive SPF50+ sun protection. The slim bottle is easy to carry around for travels, and it is equally pleasant to use on face as well as on body (I apply it on my arms actually where I have been developing sun spots from driving!).
Clarins UV Plus Anti-Pollution Day Screen is another old friend, you can read the review here. The high SPF 50 and broad spectrum UVA-UVB protection makes this one a force to contend with, and it also works well as a makeup base by smoothening out the skin. The bottle lasts a very long time (if you are only applying it to the face), as you can see the letterings have all fallen off!
NIA Tech Neck is one of those things that sound really good conceptually. A lightweight serum in a roller-massaging applicator, and a formula that aims to reduce those dreaded neck lines. Unfortunately the skin on my neck is so sensitive that the serum makes me itch so I couldn’t use this daily. In any case, other than providing some moisturizing boost, I didn’t really see any improvements in lines. There is a twist mechanism that locks the tube and prevents product from leaking out, which is crucial if you are standing this up on the vanity or carrying it around in a crowded purse. I was too lazy, and whilst I did not have to clean up a mess on my vanity, it did dispense way too much product when used.
Estee Lauder Set + Refresh Perfecting Makeup Mist should really be in the next category, but since it is pictured here… I use these sorts of makeup mists to dampen my brushes and sponges for makeup application. I’ve tried misting this directly on my face, and I personally find that it sprays far too much for makeup to remain intact, which is the farthest thing from setting my makeup. It is mainly water, and priced at $39, I can’t really see a good reason for indulging.
And that dovetails nicely into the final group of products.
La Mer The Perfecting Treatment [reviewed here] is a luxurious treatment primer, I’ve enjoyed every single use of this from start to finish. It is better suited for dry seasons and dry skin, and keeps makeup looking fresh by protecting skin’s moisture level throughout the day. I’m sad to see this one go, because there is nothing quite like it in my arsenal.
Guerlain Cils D’Enfer Maxi Lash [reviewed here] is another returning favorites. This one is the improved waterproof version, though I still need a primer to prevent smudges. It is a sleek beauty to behold, and it thickens and lengthens those lashes beautifully.
Chanel Crayon de Couleur [reviewed here] is my favourite lip formula EVER. I have so many of these nifty jumbo lip pencils and I still can’t get enough of them. Rose Violine is such a pretty everyday wearable shade that it has become the first lipstick that I’ve finished in decades. I need a replacement asap.
Aright folks, that’s it for this volume of Empties. Let me know in the comment section below if you have any new faves to share!
This post featured plenty of products that were sponsored, but all thoughts shared above are mine and mine alone.
Lunasol’s Spring 2019 collection is mostly composed of muted washes of beige [see here], but there are three colorful quint palettes to spark joy. The popular Lunasol Geminate Eyes has been refreshed this season in celebration of the brand’s 20th anniversary this year.
Lunasol Geminate Eyes N features 5 eyeshadow shades, each bearing a satin finish with varying degree of micro shimmers. Each palette holds a glitter shade designed to complement the shades for a translucent gem-like sparkle. For a start, Lunasol has reworked 2 of the original favorites – Cat’s Eye and Ruby.
Geminate Eyes N CE01 Cat’s Eye is a warm-toned palette composed of golds and bronzes. This is an almost metallic palette that creates beautiful dramatic eye looks easily. Of the 3 palettes, Cat’s Eye feels the softest and smoothest to the touch, rich and almost creamy. Here are the swatches:
I swatched Cat’s Eye in a clockwise direction, starting from the top left. The swatches from left to right are:
Top left of palette – shimmery gold glitter with a translucent base
Top right of palette – dark reddened bronze with a satin finish and filled with violet microshimmers
Middle of palette – pewter glitter with a translucent base
Bottom right of palette – dark bronze with a metallic finish
Bottom left of palette – medium copper with a metallic finish
Here is an eye makeup look featuring Cat’s Eye:
On the other end of the spectrum is a cool-toned palette featuring blooming pinks.
Lunasol Geminate Eyes N RB05 Ruby has a somewhat different texture than Cat’s Eye, feeling drier and much less pigmented than it appears. I swatched it from top to bottom on my arm below for your reference:
From left to right, the shades are:
Top left of palette – frosty white with a slight pearl tint
Top right of palette – pale pink with a slightly sheer base with some champagne micro-shimmers strewn in
Middle of palette – pink micro-shimmer with a translucent base. There is a multi-dimensional shimmer to this which shows up under different angles.
Bottom left of palette – medium mauve pink with a satin finish
Bottom right of palette – dark eggplant with a satin finish and some violet micro-shimmers
There is a very pretty limited edition Lunasol Geminate Eyes N EX01 Amethyst for the collectors out there. This is a lovely purple-themed palette which reminds me of Tom Ford Lavender Lust [reviewed here]. Here are the swatches in clockwise direction:
From left to right, the shades are:
Top left of palette – chalk white with a satin finish and slight sheerness in the base
Top right of palette -cool light lavender with a satin finish
Middle of palette – lavender glitter with a sheer base
Bottom left of palette – medium purple taupe with a satin base and a mixture of gold and pink micro-shimmers. This shade was surprising because it swatched completely different from what it looks like in the pan.
Bottom right of palette – dark eggplant with a matte base but filled with purple micro-shimmers. Again the shimmers gave this shade a very different appearance in the pan than it actually swatches.
Here is a full makeup look featuring all Lunasol spring 2019 pieces, in particular, Geminate Eyes N EX01 Amethyst on the eyes. This is a lovely easy one to wear for spring, and particularly recommended for those of you with a fair and cool-toned complexion!
These Lunasol Geminate Eyes N palettes are fun to play with, though personally I prefer the texture and pigmentation of some of Lunasol’s previous releases [such as this]. The entire spring collection are already out in counters, have you seen it yet?
This post featured products that were generously provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.
Springtime is for taking long strolls in the crisp air of the outdoors. Before the the first bloom arrives, reeds and weeds thrive alongside with the occasional wild flower. This is the thing I miss most about living in the northern hemisphere, which is probably the reason why I am always thrilled by Jo Malone’s spring releases. I love how the brand always bring us outdoors this time of the year, and this season, Jo Malone has elevated the lowly weeds and wild flowers that most people pass over without a second glance.
Jo Malone Wild Flowers & Weeds is a limited edition collection of 5 fragrances composed by perfumers Yann Vasnier and Louise Turner. These bottles are possibly the most beautiful that Jo Malone has ever released, each bearing hand-painted designs of the plants that the fragrances are inspired by. There are also glorious gift metal tins in 3 different colors (blue, green & black) and available to house 2 or 5 bottles.
The 5 fragrances are:
Cade & Cedarwood, a smoky aromatic that is inspired by the wet wooden boats waiting by the riverside
Hemlock & Bergamot, made with powdery petals brightened by bergamot and a crisp cucumber accord
Lupin & Patchouli juxtaposes lupin against rose, sweet juicy mandarin orange contrasting against earthy patchouli
Nettle & Wild Achillea combines green nettle with white wild achillea, covered by white musk
Willow & Amber, soft and gentle like the willow tree, cashmerean blend smoke and wood, yet light as fresh water
Willow & Amber seems to be the most popular by consensus, it certainly is the most unique in my opinion. My son who is developing quite a matured nose for fragrances picked up Cade & Cedarwood and declared it his favorite, and I agree.
Jo Malone Wild Flowers & Weeds is out in stores now. Visit one of the 5 boutiques in Singapore soon!
This post featured products that were generously provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.
Hello! I was away in Beijing last week so was unable to work on new posts. But I’m back, and eager to share with you the latest addition to the current miniseries on foundations. Today, I’d like to feature the new Shu Uemura Unlimited Foundation!
Shu Uemura is a makeup brand that I love and hold dear because it is formulated with Asians in mind, and designed for the everyday woman. Their foundations are great value for money, and I’ve loved and emptied several bottles over the years. The latest release – Unlimited, is a brand new launch that stands apart from all its other foundations [see here], and features breathable long-lasting wear.
The bottle is an unusual cube shape (all other Shu Uemura foundations are cylindrical), and has a handy pump dispenser at the top. The foundation is a lightweight fluid that is extremely fine and is a dream to blend. Shu Uemura has developed a unique stretchable texture that holds pigments in place; and used sponge-like powders that absorb sebum and sweat to keep the foundation looking fresh all day long, even under hot humid climates.
**Please click on image to open in separate window and zoom
Shu Uemura Unlimited Foundation has a natural semi-matte finish with a healthy luminosity. Even the thinnest layer is able to effectively conceal dark circles and uneven skin tone. With this new launch, Shu Uemura has offered 24 shades to suit a wide range of skin tones. I am wearing the shade 664 which is one of the new shades and is a great match for my neck. It is a beautiful foundation and one that I am wearing on a regular basis. Of the 3 new liquid foundations that I’ve tried of late, Shu Uemura’s Unlimited is my favourite and I highly recommend you check it out!
This post featured a product that is generously provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.
Guerlain makes some of my favourite foundations… they don’t boast an extensive range, but I’ve lived on and loved most of their formula. There is a smoothness and refinement that is not commonly found in other makeup brands. It has been many years since Guerlain last introduced a liquid foundation that is outside of their regular product lines so I was really excited to check out the new L’Essentiel!
The most striking aspect of this new foundation is its unique shape. Designed by Mathieu Lehanneur, the L’Essentiel bottle is composed of 2 spheres, the glass flacon and gilded top symbolize the perfect balance between 2 seemingly contradictory elements, makeup and skincare. I was initially wary that such a bottle may not be too practical, but it turned out to be well balanced both on the vanity as well as in the hands.
Guerlain L’Essentiel is a foundation unlike any other as it not only gives the illusion of naturally perfect skin, it is actually made from 97% naturally-derived skin-loving ingredients that aim to protect and improve the quality of your skin with continued use. Beauty-boosting ingredients such as white cocoa bean extract, and probiotic derivatives and prebiotics help to maintain skin’s natural balance, strengthen the cutaneous barrier, and boost hydration. Tara and red algae gums allow the skin to breathe and protect it from the aging effects of pollution.
These beneficial effects are made all the more important since L’Essentiel has an impressive 16-hour wear time. The texture is light and smooth, on par with the best Guerlain has ever offered. It is easy to apply and blend, and provides light-medium slightly buildable coverage. As you can see from the half-faced comparison shot below, L’Essentiel brightens and evens out my skin tone whilst maintaining allow my natural skin to show through. It gives my skin a luminous glow which looks more healthy than oily, far less shiny than this foundation that I recently reviewed. I’m using the shade 02N which is slightly lighter than my natural skin tone and looks much pinker than I like, 02W should be a better match.
One of the common complaints I’ve heard about Guerlain foundations in the past was the lack of shades, but this time L’Essentiel is being released with a whopping 30 shades! There are C- cool/ N- neutral/ W- warm undertones, as well as a range of intensities from 00 to 06.
**Please click on image to open in new window and zoom
I don’t wear normally my foundations for 16 hours, but a minimum of 12 hours on a daily basis in a hot and humid climate. Many brands claim long-lasting wear for their foundations, so I am usually sceptical and was pleasantly surprised to find Guerlain L’Essentiel actually survives my combination skin very well! At the end of the day my makeup is still perfectly intact, perhaps a slight sheen may have escaped on my t-zone but nothing a simple blot can’t fix. There is no fading, creasing nor breaking down of the foundation.
This post featured a product that was kindly provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.
There is a revolution afoot this spring, a whole new crop of foundations to herald in a beautiful complexion in keeping with the latest makeup trend. Petal fresh skin has never been more alive and real, coverage is uncompromised by texture and comfort. To kickstart this mini series is the latest cushion from Sulwhasoo and the brand’s first ever liquid foundation.
I was excited when I first spied the Sulwhasoo Sheer Lasting Foundation as this is the first liquid foundation from this brand. Formulated with a new Sheer Hydra Formula Technology, this foundation adheres to skin all day for long-lasting wear, coupled with moisture to ensure comfort and a smooth finish. As you might expect from a luxury skincare expert, the Sulwhasoo Sheer Lasting Foundation is formulated with sea buckthorn berries that is rich in antioxidants. For full list of ingredients see here.
*Please click on image to open in separate window and zoom
The coverage though sheer, is surprisingly good. As you can see from the half-faced comparison shot above, Sulwhasoo Sheer Lasting Foundation is able to brighten my dark circles and conceal redness around my nose. It evens out skin tone in general but a separate concealer is still needed to completely erase blemishes from sight. There is a noticeable gleam to this foundation which is a matter of personal preference but may be tricky for those with oily skin. The good thing though is that it does not get progressively oily-looking as the day progresses. When used on its own, I do notice it breaking down slightly on my t-zone after about 8 hours of wear, but this can be resolved with a primer and some powder.
Released alongside the foundation is Sulwhasoo’s latest Sheer Lasting Gel Cushion. I should mention at this point that I find the rose gold detailing on this pair of base makeup to be really pretty. Sulwhasoo has many cushions, all of them excellent so I was hardpressed to get excited at first sight. The gel cushion comes with a fine mesh over the product, and upon first dip of the puff, becomes fully ensconced within the melting gel. When applied to the face, it bursts in a drench of hydration, and has a light crisp texture. The application was seamless, very much my-skin-but-better whilst still providing great coverage as you can see below.
*Please click on image to open in a separate window and zoom.
Sulwhasoo Sheer Lasting Cushion actually reminds me of Chanel’s Gel Touch Foundation [reviewed here] which is one of my personal favorite cushions for a natural finish. In comparison, this one from Sulwhasoo has better coverage and lasts longer. I found it lasts an entire day without transferring, and is able to control the appearance of oily shine. Between the 2, I definitely prefer this cushion over the foundation. In case you are interested in the ingredients, you may find the full list here.
Sulwhasoo Sheer Lasting Foundation and Cushion are out in counters now. Please stop by and check them out for yourself!
This post featured products that were generously provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my honest, unbiased views.
Lunasol is hitting hard and strong these few months and I’m loving it! After a rather strong handed fall and winter season last year, the brand is switching things up and going back to the classics with its best loved The Beige line. If you hadn’t already seen it, there are 2 huge (for any Japanese brand) 10-shade eyeshadow palettes that are the stuff of dreams for all neutral lovers. And plenty of cheek and lip options too to accompany the look.
Lunasol greets the new year with The Beige Eyes, 2 neutral palettes bearing varying gradations of beige to create a sophisticated and easy-to-wear everyday looks. This is the first time I’ve seen Lunasol turn out 10-shade palettes like these, so they are definitely something different! The cases are sleek and the width fit nicely in my hand, providing a good grip while working. I appreciate the generous mirror inside, as well as a dual-ended brush and sponge applicator.
At first glance, both palettes seem quite similar, and upon swatching I realized that their main difference lies in their undertones – 01 Neutral Beige is slightly cooler in tone, whilst 02 Noble Beige is slightly warmer. Notwithstanding, I found both the difference to be just marginal and was able to wear both equally well.
The range of intensities and composition are the same across both 01 and 02. Both palettes bear 2 pearlescent shimmer shades for highlighting, and 2 dark matte shades for defining. Everything else in between are mainly satin in finish, and may be worn on their own or blended with the other shades at will. The formula seems somewhat different from the usual Lunasol eyeshadows, and fall slightly drier and less pigmented than I personally like. The Beige Eyes 01 in particular is drier than 02, and I had some difficulty getting the darkest shade to apply smoothly.
Instead of the large powder palettes, you may choose to pick up 1 or more of these Lunasol Beige Nuance Eyes instead. These single eyeshadow pots are limited edition, and have a bouncy gel-like texture with a powder finish. There are 6 shades to choose from, all in varying hues of beige in line with the theme of this collection. Most of them bear some degree of shimmer, giving the shades added complexity. Unlike most cream shadows, these do not smudge nor crease on me.
With such sheer shades I really need a deep liner to help define my eyes. Lunasol offers 2 Pencil Eyeliner N this season, both are limited edition and designed to perfectly pair with the eyeshadows here. I found these pencil eyeliners to be rather stiff though not scratchy, which is perferable to the soft creamy types for tightlining and working along the waterline. On the other hand, they blend out easily for a seamless look.
There are also 2 individually panned glitter Jewelry Powder which are great as highlighters on the cheeks and eyes. Choose from a cool silver and a warm gold. Both have a slightly translucent base, and the glitters are very fine so they don’t show up chunky on the cheeks.
No makeup collection could be complete with lip colours, and there are 6 limited edition Beige Nuance Lips to choose from. These are so creamy and buttery I was in heaven. A single swipe gives full coverage, which is a dream come true. There is a good range of intensities, though most of them run warm and the only cooler pink tone is much too pale for me.
Here are the arm swatches for your reference:
And for the cheeks, there are 2 limited edition beige tones. These are typical of Japanese blushes in that they are not very intense, and given they are natural tones, they may feel under pigmented and require a more rigorous sweep of the brush to show up. On the other hand it is almost impossible to over do these, and they do provide a sculpting effect to the cheeks.
I put a few of these items to work, and here is a makeup look for the season:
For this look, I am wearingNuance Eyes EX06 as a base on my lids, several shades from The Beige Eyes 02 over it, and Pencil Eyeliner EX02 tightlining for soft definition. I swept Coloring Sheer Cheeks EX05 along my cheek bones and added Jewelry Powder EX01 along the tops as highlight (though my camera seemed to have eaten it up). Lastly I wore Beige Nuance Lips EX06 to complete the look.
In addition to the spring collection, Lunasol has also released a couple of chocolate-themed makeup for Valentines Day! The Lunasol Duo de Chocolat Eyes is packaged like fine belgium truffles and even have a slight whiff to add to the experience. For the lips, try the Lunasol Melty Chocolat Lips which is a liquid glossy lipstick in a lovely mauve shade.
Lunasol’s Spring and Valentines’ Day collection is out in stores now, go check them out soon!
This post featured products that were generously provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.
This Spring 2019 has been a fairly quiet one for me… I’ve not really been feeling many of the mainstream collections from the usual brands, in any case pastels and candy hues were never my thing. But Chanel takes a different approach with its Le Blanc makeup line this year, going for skin-like glow to get us transitioning into summer, and I’m all for it!
Pierres de Lumière de Chanel is inspired by the luminous depths of minerals, and is designed to help achieve the perfect, lived-in glow. I was most drawn to the new Les Tissages de Chanel Blush in Tweed Beige, with its coral-beige tweed hue with shimmering gold threads interwoven. It is an unexpected shade for spring, and Tweed Beiges gives a warm sun-kissed look which highlights and sculpts my cheeks.
Generally speaking, the interweaving design on these Les Tissages blushes are an overspray but this one seems to run fairly deep as after several rigorous sweeps of my brush it still seems intact. The gold pigments combine with the coral to give it a warm luminous sheen. I swatched this on my arm, which you will see shortly.
There are 2 Les 4 Ombres eyeshadow palettes in this Pierres de Lumière de Chanel collection and I was rather torn between them, but ultimately I decided to go with Lueurs Ambrees because it just goes beautifully with Tweed Beige, and I’m feeling all the warm tones this spring. On the surface of it, Lueurs Ambrees bears close resemblance to many nude palettes that we all own, but the moment I dipped my brush in, I realized the luminosity of the shades and range of intensities made this subtly unique.
What stands out the most to me with these pieces is the departure from cool pastels (although Chanel does provide for that with Cristal de Printemps) that is traditionally de rigueur for these Asia-exclusive spring collections. It really feels like a coming of age moment when the beauty industry is able to discern that yellow-skinned Asians love nudes just as much as the average Westerner, and that we have all graduated from the pale-wash-of-nothingness on the lids look. Tweed Beige is as versatile as one can imagine, from ethereal soft glowy eyes to more defined smouldering looks. The shades in Tweed Beige blend into each other effortlessly for a seamless look. And I love, love the soft microshimmers that give the look depth.
Chanel offers a few options for the lips, and personally I love the Le Rouge Crayon de Couleur formula so much that I simply had to pick up at least 1 of the 2 variations despite efforts to streamline my lipstick collection. There is a beautiful rose shade that would click in perfectly with both Tweed Beige and Lueurs Ambrees, instead I decided to go for the brightening perk from Corail Intense.
I was ready to leave the boutique with the 3 pieces that I had already picked up, when I was introduced to the Le Vernis. There are a couple of fun colourful options, but I was more intrigued by the 2 sheer pearlescent shades.
Perle de Corail is a warm-toned pearlescent peach with subtle shimmers. It is semi-sheer, even with 2 coats it is still not completely opaque. That makes Perle de Corail more wearable though in my opinion, as it gives a polished nude look that is different from the usual creamy beiges. It wears down gently at the edges and is not easily noticeable due to the colour and translucency.
Eau de Nacre is a bright pearlescent white with a pinkish tinge and noticeable microshimmers. It is fully opaque in 2 coats, though there are visible brush lines so extra care must be taken to apply straight. I noticed chips at the tips after the 2nd day which is a pity as most Chanel polishes last at least 3 days on me before showing tip wear. The bright tint makes it more noticeable than Perle de Corail though still acceptable.
My son started primary school this year, and since January I’ve had to wake up pre-dawn to get myself ready and get him to school before 7am. I’ve had to completely switch up my makeup, picking things that are fool-proof when bleary-eyed and dark. These pieces from Chanel’s Pierres de Lumiere collection meet my needs and make me look much more awake than I really am. So if that resonates with you, I recommend you get hold of this collection as soon as you can!
For the title of this post, I really wanted to write “I lost my cherry to Tom Ford…” which is a cheeky pun that makes utterly no sense of course, but in a strange turn that was what happened to me. Cherry notes generally do not rank high on my list of fragrance preferences, and I have a strong version to the sickening sweet variety used by many mainstream brands. So admittedly, I was only mildly interested in the new Tom Ford Private Blend for its packaging. I mean, who can resist the cherry red encased in clear glass bottle? But one spritz of Lost Cherry, and I was utterly and completely besotted.
Tom Ford Lost Cherry literally pops with a trio of cherry accord – sweet, juicy cherries combined with a dash of tart griotte syrup and cherry liquor. It morphs and takes on multiple facets in the opening burst before settling into a black cherry cordial. The syrupy sweetness is kept in check by the presence of roasted bitter almonds, another quality that I don’t usually favour in a fragrance, but it lends a warm and green quality to the bouquet.
Soft lush petals of Turkish rose and jasmine sambac envelops the cherry heart, accompanied by a waft of vanilla. It is perfectly balanced, the cherry is never completely veiled, instead it becomes softer and takes on a velvety quality that I love. But true mastery is in maintaining the balance, and Lost Cherry has a surprising translucency that sets it apart. When I tried to focus on it though, I found myself falling into a base of cedar-sandalwood-vetiver and tonka beans. These lend subtle depth to the fragrance, and a sort of sexy masculinity.
Tom Ford Lost Cherry is a happy and playful scent, yet very grown-up and subtly sexy. I’ve really enjoyed wearing it myself, but I can also see it on my man. For the first few weeks after I received it, I could not stop wearing Lost Cherry. If there is a purse-spray, I would buy it in a heartbeat. Because unfortunately for me, Lost Cherry has very little sillage, staying very close to the skin. Even then, it lasts only about 5 hours before being completely lost, so a mid-day touch-up is definitely needed.
This post featured a product that was generously provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.
Happy Valentines’ Day! This year’s festival of love falls right smack in the middle of Chinese New Year, so I thought it is apt to introduce the perfect red lipstick on this special occasion. A red lip signals confidence, femininity and sexiness; no woman should be without her go-to red lipstick. No 2 reds are the same though, the slightest tweak in undertone can make a huge difference. And now, Shu Uemura has designed a universal red lipstick to suit the Asian woman!
Based on Uchiide’s years of expertise and after working on thousands of real women, the Shu Uemura International Artistic Director has created RD163 . Unlike other reds that precede it, RD163 has the finest balance of yellow and blue tones that is perfectly neutral to suit every complexion. More than that, RD163 brightens up the face and gives skin an instant freshness.
Even with the perfect matching shade, some women may find it daunting to wear such a bold lip color. To cater for every occasion, RD163 is available in 3 different finishes – satin, matte and lacquer shine. Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited is a classic formula and one of my personal favorites because it is so comfortable to wear, wonderfully pigmented and has a natural shine to it. This is probably the easiest one to pull off because it looks so elegant. Rouge Unlimited Matte is one of the most comfortable matte lipsticks I have ever tried, and it is edgier with its all-matte finish, but I like to rub it down and feather it out for a slightly undone look. Rouge Unlimited Lacquer Shine has a beautiful glossy finish but it can be slightly challenging as I found it smudges easily. An alternative is to tap this on the lips instead of swiping to wear it sheer. It is also fun to layer the different RD163s together – dab Lacquer Shine to the middle of the lips over Rouge Unlimited Matte for an attractive pout.
I have a cool-toned yellow-based complexion, which may sound like an oxymoron, but is in fact quite common. As such, I tend to favour cool reds that almost veer towards fuchsia. I’ve been told that I wear dark berries well, but personally I don’t appreciate it as much as true reds. RD163 is interesting to me because it has a distinct yellow tint in it yet it does not turn me sallow. On the contrary, it has a brightening effect and it also creates a luminosity that I simply adore! In case you are not convinced, my friend Lily has a warm-toned complexion and she also wears RD163 beautifully here!
Along with the release of the new red wardrobe, Shu Uemura has also launched a brand new Re:set Tint Remover & Lip Conditioner. This is a liquid lipstick remover that is able to easily erase any last traces of the most stubborn lip stain. It uses a tint-melting technology that dissolves pigments and breaks the bond between pigment and lips, so there is no need to rub and tug unnecessarily. At the same time, it has a gentle exfoliating action to keep lips perfectly soft and smooth, so that lipstick always goes on easily and lasts longer.
Do you have a go-to red lipstick that you can always rely on to carry you through the important events of your life?
This post featured products that were kindly provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.