Sunday, 29 April 2012

Girl About Melbourne

The other day I was lucky enough to experience the rarity that is a day off with my boyfriend. Shock horror! I know. So we made the most of the freedom, company and sunshine and headed into the city with intentions to visit ACMI That's the 'Australian Centre for the Moving Image' for all my international readers! We planned on seeing an interview with Melbourne director Amiel Courtin-Wilson: the genius behind the soon to be released feature film 'Hail' (keep your eyes peeled!) After what was a terrifically interesting talk we spent the rest of the day being creatures of leisure. Lots of milling about the city, drinking, people watching and window shopping. I took a few photos on my phone (hence the somewhat poor quality) that I thought I'd share with you. Onward!

Lipstick: 'Hot Stuff'' by Chi Chi
Blush: 'Frankly Scarlet' by Mac
Eyebrow Pencil: 'Hazel' by Rimmel & 'Frankly Scarlet' Blush by Mac
Head Scarf and Jacket: Op Shop
Skirt: Topshop London
Tights: River Island
Boots: Wittner
Bag: Topshop London

By the Yarra
Flowers and Dappled Sunlight. Ahhh!
A Slice of Iconic Melbourne

From the Bathroom in 'The Workshop'
I had to include this last photo because I thought it was just too pretty not to. It's looking out the window of the ladies bathroom in a bar on Elizabeth St called 'The Workshop'. I realise I'm probably a little late on the bandwagon as far as this venue goes but I really liked it. Such a nice, relaxed bar to have an afternoon beer or two. I wish I'd taken more photos of the actual bar but to be honest, I was too busy drinking and blathering on!

Friday, 27 April 2012

Eyes All Aflutter With Paperself Lashes

Pinch me, I'm dreaming! Ever since one of my friends introduced me to these amazing paper lashes I have been completely smitten. I can't think of a product that makes me feel more romantic and extravagant. As far as false lashes go; these take the cake. I realise this post may be one gigantic swoon, but I simply couldn't resist the urge to share them with you!

Deer and Butterfly Lash from Paperself

Each pair of these wonderful lashes are intricately cut, apparently "inspired by the art of Chinese paper-cutting". There are currently 19 designs in the collection which include full lashes and some smaller, outer corner lashes. Each are housed in an equally beautiful embossed paper box. The one below is a little different because it's a Victoria and Albert Museum exclusive.

The Stunning Packaging

Lashes Removed From the Outer Box 

A Little Explanation of the Lace Garden Design

V&A Lace Garden Lashes. Sigh. Perfect!

Being made of a delicate material like paper the first question on your lips may very well be "do they last?" If you're very gentle when removing them from the packet (and from your lashline after use) they can actually last you as long as regular falsies. Of course, they're more likely to get damaged if you get caught in the rain or find yourself face first on a pillow after a big night out, but generally they're fine. I've worn my Peach Blossom pair twice now and they're still good to go!

Looking Like a Deer in the Headlights With My Peach Blossom Lashes

As you can see in the photo above, the full lashes can easily be trimmed and arranged any way that you like. I really love how creative you can be with the lashes in this way. They can create such a different look depending on whether you choose to wear the full lash (I don't know if I'd be game enough) or section it off and position them wherever takes your fancy!

The only teeny tiny downside of the Paperself lashes is that firstly, they don't include glue and secondly, you can sometimes feel them against your skin. The former isn't really a big deal because I assume most girls have Duo glue or some other brand of adhesive at hand. The latter may be a bit of an annoyance for some. Personaly, I was ok with feeling the lashes hitting my browbone from time to time. But as they're not a particularly soft material, this might irritate those people who aren't comfortable with having that kind of slightly abrasive contact. In my opinion, they're totally worth it though!

Forgive the Slightly Dodgey Application!
Now we get to the nitty gritty: stockists and pricing. As they are a London based company, it's obviously easier (and cheaper) to purchase them in the UK, or even the US for that matter. I picked up the Deer and Butterfly pair from Sephora on a trip to New York and the Lace Garden pair from the Victoria & Albert Museum giftshop in London. Annoyingly, my friend doesn't remember where she found the Peach Blossom pair here in Melbourne. You can of course buy them from the Paperself Website, but be warned, the lashes cost a whopping $19.50 for the full set and $16.50 for the outer corner set. Plus international postage is $11 for the first pair and around $2 extra for any additional pairs. My recommendation? Pick them up on holiday or befriend a lovely UK or US girly who's willing to send them to you! Regardless, they're just too beautiful not to snap up! I'm currently eyeing off the Bird pair. Excuse the pun!


Thursday, 19 April 2012

Wrapped Up and Pinned

Just a quick little post today. I went out for drinks last night to the Carlton Club. Yesterday was just too warm and lovely not to make the most of the weather by sharing a jug of delicious fruity cocktail at a tiki-esque rooftop bar. For a while now I've been avoiding this particular bar on the basis that their weekend security is simply awful. The apparent 'dress code' they have seems to be as changeable as the weather. I've had friends (mostly male) that have been rejected for being too under dressed and too overdressed! Anyway, I figured that as this was a weeknight it'd be much more relaxed. And it was.

More on topic, I went on an op-shop (thrift store) scarf buying spree during the day and decided to sport this wonderful floral print scarf out for the night.

Diolen 100% Polyester Scarf. $5 from my local Op-Shop.

I've been loving wearing scarves in my hair of late. They can completely transform any look and are easy to bobby pin any way that you'd like. Plus op-shops generally have such a huge selection in all different colours and patterns for around $5 or under. These aren't the kinds of colours I'd usually go for (I'm not a huge fan of wearing brown) but I thought the design was really pretty and the flowers matched my hair quite nicely.

Anyone else found any op-shop treasures recently?

Saturday, 14 April 2012

My Chaddy Haul!

I spent the day yesterday shopping up a storm at Chaddy with my Mum.  I had some vouchers and money I'd accumulated over Christmas and my birthday so I wanted to pick up some bits and pieces I had been eyeing off (and also a few exciting random purchases). I often try to avoid this particular shopping centre because it's colossal and houses so many brilliant cosmetics, skincare and fashion stores. For this reason it tends to wreak havoc on my purse! But gift money justifies a visit right? Anyway, on the off chance you might be interested I thought I'd share with you what I carted home with me.

Beauty by Vitalcare Mirror. $33 from Priceline.

For ages I've been doing my makeup in a poorly lit lounge room using a small mirror tentatively placed on an upturned tissue box. Not exactly an ideal setup. This solves everything. Good lighting AND a stand! Another bonus is that it's battery operated. So it's perfect for moving it to wherever you need it to go.

Beyonce Pulse Eau De Parfum 50ml. $49 from Perfume Connection.

I'd been lusting after this perfume since December but couldn't justify buying it for myself. When I saw it on sale I simply couldn't resist! Especially considering my perfume collection currently consists of three perfumes I no longer wear, one bottle I do and one roller ball bottle of Couture Couture by Juicy Couture. For anyone who hasn't smelt this it's fruity and floral. Like a gummy bear sitting on an orchid. Now there's a mental picture for you!

Revlon Nutricolor Creme in 600 Fire Red. $25 from Lattouf International.

I'd heard a lot of good things about this colour depositing treatment by Revlon. Beauty blogger All Dolled Up had mentioned it in a video saying that it does wonders for maintaining coloured hair. So I thought I'd give it a go. One tube is 100ml and they also have 250ml pump bottles, but they're fazing them out I believe. It replaces a conditioner and is said to last you four washes. This doesn't sound like much considering the price; however I only wash my hair once a week, so this will last me the month. 

Dragon's Egg Bath Ballistic. $6 from Lush.

I thought I'd treat myself to this little baby after the wonderment that was Lush's green bubbleroon. This is from Lush's standard bath bomb range. It smells fresh and zesty like lemon sherbet. Yummo! Plus apparently it has gold glitter in the middle!

Chi Chi Viva La Diva Lipsticks in Centrefold (left) and Drop Dead Gorgeous (right). $19 each from Myer. $28.50 for two with Myer's current offer of buy one Chi Chi product, get the second half price.

I've been head-over-heels for Chi Chi lipsticks of late. They're pretty comparable to Mac in terms of quality but a little bit cheaper. They're also a product of Australia which is hunky dorey. 

 I'd been on a mission to find this one since I'd swatched it in Target and Gloss, but it had been out of stock in both! As you can see, it's a nude. I never thought I'd see the day that I would purchase a nude lippie, but I was quite fond of this one. I think it'd be perfect for a bit of a 60's look when I want to go heavy on the eye makeup. Also, rather than being a straight matte finish, this one is a creamy matte. So it's a lot more comfortable to wear.

Drop Dead Gorgeous
I actually owned this one way back in the day when Chi Chi were packaging their lipsticks in cardboard tubes (what a terrible idea!). I absolutely loved the shade but had to throw it out because the tube was getting too manky for words. So when I discovered that Chi Chi were still making this shade I had to pick it up. I find this shade really warms my face up and does wonders for accentuating rose coloured blush. It's a matte finish though so it can be a little drying. Nothing a lip balm can't fix though. Ahhh. I love it.

Trina & Co Cosmetics Bag. $11 on sale at Target.

I needed a new bag to house my ever-growing collection of makeup. Plus using a pencil case for my brushes just wasn't cutting it! Then I stumbled across this little gem. It feels like a bit of a nod to Tiffany & Co which certainly wins points for me. The lining is navy and white polka dots and as you can see it has two sections. So I can now use one side for my brushes and the other side for my makeup. Success!

Travalo Excel Atomiser. $18 from Perfume Connection.

I can't exactly remember which blogger introduced me to this nifty product (I think it was A Sprinkle of Glitter), but I saw this at the counter of Perfume Connection and immediately snapped it up. If you haven't seen or heard about the Travalo before, it's basically a little handbag-friendly-sized perfume carrier. You just have to take the cap off one of your full sized perfumes, place the tube thingy in the end of the Travalo and keep pressing down until you can see that it's full. The see-through indicator on the side makes it easy. What a great idea! It's also small enough that you can chuck it in your carry-on luggage when travelling. They're available in lots of different colours too so that you can differentiate your fragrances. Or you can just marvel at how pretty they all are!

Over and out buddies!

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Glossybox Flashback Favourites

Good morning, afternoon or evening (you can never be too sure on the magical blogesphere!)

I'm currently a subscriber to Glossybox Australia, which (as many of you may already know) is Australia's version of the American Birchbox. I've been signed up to this particular beauty box since December and have received both drugstore and high-end products ranging from makeup to haircare to skincare to nail polish to perfume and everything in between. Since I've only just started this humble little blog of mine I've missed out on the opportunity to blab about the past 4 months' hits and misses. So I thought I'd do a bit of a 'Best Of The Boxes' post and chat about my top 5 Glossy products so far. Admittedly, most of them are from the January box but that's just how things go. Behold!

Left to Right: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Colour, John Frieda Frizz-Ease Finishing Creme, Kosmea Daily Facial Exfoliant, Sheercover Nourishing Moisturiser & Bobbi Brown Lash Glamour Extreme Lengthening Mascara

  • Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Colour in the colour Petal Pusher. I was a little sceptical of this to begin with. I've tried a lot of supposedly 'quick drying' polishes which haven't lived up to their name. This exceeded my expectations. As the name suggests the polish is super quick to dry. After about a minute it was completely, run-your-keys-along-your-nails dry. As a girl who does her nails late at night and often wakes up with quilting indents this was an absolute godsend. So much so that I went out and purchased the Sally Hansen Ista-Dri Top Coat which is equally amazing. I really really love the brush too. It's wide and dense, making it a breeze to apply.
  • John Frieda Frizz-Ease Finishing Creme. This is certainly not a new product by any means. I remember purchasing this years ago. Even still, receiving it in my Glossybox reminded me of why I used it in the first place. It's great for smoothing fly-aways and making my hair look more hydrated and healthy. Plus it smells so good! If you run it through your hair in the morning you can still smell it at the end of the day! A word of warning though - using too much on dry hair can give it a wet appearance which isn't great if you've just straightened it. So it pays to use the creme rather sparingly.
  • Kosmea Daily Facial Exfoliant. I have to say, when I first tried this I hated it simply for the smell. It's unique to say the least. Kind of peppery. I'm not sure if it was the rose hips or the chamomile, or both, but I detested it. In spite of this I persevered with it because the effect the product had on my skin was lovely. It does a great job of brightening and softening and works wonderfully as a face mask for a deep cleansing facial treatment. These days I don't even mind the smell so much!  
  • Sheercover Nourishing Moisturiser. Yes. We've all seen the late-night ads on TV. The kind that make your mind go numb because every single person rattles on about how extraordinary the Sheercover brand is. While this product is not extraordinary by any means (the retail price leaves little to be desired) I adored this product for 3 reasons. Firstly, it's the perfect daily moisturiser for me. It's not too heavy and it sinks into the skin quickly leaving it fresh and soft rather than greasy. Secondly, it contains SPF 15 which is always a plus when you're positioned under a giant hole in the ozone layer! Thirdly, it's a great base for makeup. I have used day creams under my foundation before and they've always tried to escape through. This one sits under makeup beautifully. So yay for that! It should be noted that while the moisturiser says it's fragrance free it does still carry with it a very subtle scent. Nothing too noteworthy though.
  • Bobbi Brown Lash Glamour Extreme Lengthening Mascara. I'm kind of cheating with this one in that I haven't actually road tested it yet! Eeep! I've been saving it to travel with later this year. It's for this exact reason though that this product has made it into my top 5. At an adorable 3ml's this mascara is perfect to travel with. Plus it's Bobbi Brown so it's got to be good right?!
Well, that about wraps things up for my top 5 Glossybox products over the past 4 months. I hope that was in some way helpful or interesting or at the very least - time filling! If you have any beauty box gems you'd like to share with me I'd be more than delighted to hear about them.

A whole lotta' love,

Sunday, 8 April 2012

My Pony Boy Parlour Trinket

I was recently gifted this fantastical resin ring from one of my lovely friends. It's shiny and super playful, filled with clouds of colour and swirls of glitter. It actually reminds me of a tombola from a game of marbles! Unfortunately for me my hands are insanely small which often makes it hard to wear these kinds of chunky rings, but I wear it all the same. I just have to restrict my gesturing for fear of banging it on something or having it fly off!

Look at it in the light will you?! Oooooooh!

This is the work of a talented Aussie designer named Kellie Christie. She makes all kinds of treasures including other resin jewellery featuring buttons, sprinkles and...wait for beans!! If you felt like giving her blog a gander it's here

My friend picked up this gem for me from Pony Boy Parlour - a magical little Brunswick based boutique. Pony Boy stocks lots of vintage, handmade and secondhand items crafted and sourced by aspiring Australian designers and artists. I'm yet to go there myself but I'm definitely keen to visit once they reopen later this April (they've been busy sprucing things up). There are so many wonderful photos up on their Facebook site which have me drooling with delight. Plus I'm all for supporting smarty pants local artists!

Pony Boy Parlour

The Pony Boy Parlour is at 284 Albert St, Brunswick (White Elephant Warehouse), Melbourne. It's closed currently but will be reopening later this month.

Kitty Kiss

Apparently Priceline has been stocking Hello Kitty cosmetics for a little while now, but it wasn't until recently that I actually noticed them. To be fair, the stand that they're on is itty bitty and swamped by the comparatively large Loreal and Maxfactor sections.

Whether you like Hello Kitty or not (I've never been a fan) you have to admit that the packaging for this lipstick is gorgeous. It's from the Kiss and Matte range which means that it is a semi-matte lippy. The colour I snatched up is Bollywood which is a lovely, very wearable bright pink shade.

Firstly, I'm in love with this colour. I'm usually a bit tentative about wearing pinks. I often feel as though they make me look like I've broken into my Mum's makeup case. This shade however, was just bright enough to be fun without looking tacky. Also when it faded it blended out into a rosy pink colour which looked quite nice. So win win on that one.

The formula itself is fairly moisturising as far as a semi-matte goes. If it weren't for the plasticy smell of the lippy I'd swear I was applying a nourishing balm. It's perhaps not the most long lasting lipstick but I suppose that's to be expected when you're paying a mere $11.00 for it. Even less with the $5.00 off deal Priceline's currently running for members! Yay!

I also like the small, travel-friendly size of the lipstick tube. The amount of product you get is 3.5gm's, so more than a standard MAC lipstick, but the tube itself is two thirds the size. So it's totally up my alley given how much I love to travel (and conserve space in my luggage for bringing back goodies for that matter!)


Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Who Said Candles Are Boring?

I love a good scented candle. It must be said. Is there anything more satisfying than the smell and sight of a nice little flaming candle on a coffee table when you're craving some domestic solitude? Nope! This is precisely the reason I found myself buying yet another candle despite my intentions to save. Oh boy!

Here 'Tis!

Scented candles are a particular weakness of mine. I have been burning my Glasshouse Candle in Tahaa Vanilla Caramel for a while now and I absolutely adore it. Unfortunately though (like Yankee Candles here in Australia) they're a bit on the pricey side. So when I spied this Brooklyn based, more reasonably priced range at Riot Art (of all places!) I decided to give it a go. As you can see I chose the fragrance Honeydew Melon which is a fresh, cool, fruity scent not unlike Bodycology's Foaming Bath and Shower Gel in Cucumber Melon (which I adore).

The small 114gm jars were priced at $7.00 and the large 350gm jars were $20.00. Compared to Glasshouse's $15 for a small jar and $35 for a large, the Old Williamburgh Candle wins in that sense. As I had never tried this brand before I purchased the smaller jar to sample. Sometimes, while they may smell great in the jar, the scent while burning is a whole other story. So I wanted save my pennies just in case!

I decided to burn it in the bathroom with the door closed so I that could gauge how strong the fragrance was. I found that it was more on the subtle side, even after 3 hours of burning. Nowhere near the strength of a Glasshouse Candle, but still noticeable. I can't help but feel that the larger candle would be stronger as this seems to be the case with Yankee Candles. Regardless, I think I'll be purchasing the larger size and seeing how it goes. Plus the collection includes a violet scent which I'm really into right now!

Any scented candles you think are worth a mention?

Monday, 2 April 2012

How Kleancolour Polish Stole My Heart

I recently ventured to the Caribbean Gardens Market and stumbled across a nice big stall of nail polishes from the American brand Kleancolour. I can safely say I had never heard of Kleancolour until then, but I was instantly drawn to the magnificent range of colours on offer (and the amazing price of $5.00 a bottle!). This particular stall stocked a little over 100 colours but the entire range consists of 236 shades including a brilliant array of glitter polishes. Oooh ahhh! I restrained myself and bought just 5 shades. I can see a revisit on the horizon though!

Left to Right:   120 Teal Envy,  25 Beach Blue,  214 Glamour Barbie,  4 White,  97 Love Affair

First of all I'm in love with the design of the bottle. For a polish so reasonably priced (I believe it's only $3.49 in the United States) the packaging is lovely. Nice and sturdy with an easy to use mid-thickness brush. In my opinion it's far prettier than the chunky O.P.I bottles.

The polish itself glides on smoothly and dries reasonably quickly. It also fairly opaque. It took just two coats to get this result:

Excuse the damaged cuticles!

As far as the polish's longevity goes I found that it lasted reasonably well without chipping. I work full time as a waitress/barista, so my nails tend to go through the wars daily. My hands are frequently in contact with steam, hot water and cleaning products, as well as facing the general damage caused by clearing tables, stacking plates and the like. On me, this polish lasted two working days without a chip. It was only on the third day that a few little ones appeared. A friend of mine who is also a barista said that she had worn a Kleancolour nail polish to work and found that it was quite chip-resistant also.

120 Teal Envy

For those of you who live in Melbourne I would definitely recommend heading on over to the Caribbean Garden Market (I went on a Friday) and giving them a burl. Otherwise if you're in America you can order online from their website right here. Unfortunately for us Aussie folk they do not ship internationally but this site is great for having a look at their colour range. So far I am absolutely in love with these polishes. They are nearly on par with O.P.I and just for a fraction of the hideous price.

Long live Kleancolour!