Monday, 4 June 2012

A little snapshot into April & May...


Hello lovelies

I thought I would do a little photo recap of April and May. They were quite the event-filled months. Really awesome times. Hope you enjoy this little snapshot into my life.

Lv M xx
Wedding no. 1 
Simon and I
Blushing bride
Lovely venue

Wedding no. 2 
Friends :)
The beautiful bride
Si and I
Amazing venue
All of my best friends
The groom and I
Me and my besties with our duck faces

Wedding no. 3

My sister, Michelle, and I
The gorgeous bride and groom

Si and I
Me, my cousin, my sister
Me, my sister, our friend Gunn

Riebeeck-Kasteel Olive Festival

Best friends :)
Having a laugh after some wine

Masked ball


Kim and I

Space Cowboy themed dinner party

Jeanne and I
Jeanne, Karen and me
Jeanne and Kyle


Saturday, 26 May 2012

A quicker way to make hair grow?

I am always on some mission or another. The first was to sort my skin out which I finally seem to have done (blog post soon to follow), and now my next mission is to try speed up the growth of my hair as I am so sick of having short hair. Typing this now I feel rather stupid as I know that there is nothing that will make my hair grow ridiculously quickly, but I have heard that certain things can help it a little bit, and even if I can make it grow a little bit more quickly, I am willing to try it. The other reason for me trying out these products is because I have noticed that my hair has become a lot thinner recently. I have always had fine hair but a lot of hair, so it always appeared thick. But since being on oratane for my skin, I have noticed my hair getting thinner. I believe oratane is the reason for this as it is one of the (less-common) side effects listed. I did not have this problem the last time I was on oratane, but then again, I have been experiencing symptoms this time around that I did not experience the last time. There are other possible reasons for my hair thinning so it might not be oratane. Who knows!

Anyway, so I'm hoping these products can help in some way or another. I did some research and apparently biotin (vitamin H) and coconut oil are both associated with helping hair growth, and biotin also apparently helps with thinning hair and it also is good for your nails. The only downside is that a number of reviewers said that taking biotin supplements made their skin break out. Luckily for me I am on oratane, so hopefully I shouldn't have a problem with that.


So I am taking 2 Prosana capsules a day, which are high in biotin. I am also using Palmer's coconut oil on my hair from time to time. I massage it into my scalp and hair in the evening and wash it out in the morning. The only downside I have found with this so far is that I found it quite difficult to wash all of the oil out. So in future I will use it only on my scalp and not only the entire length of my hair.

So I will let you know if I notice any differences in the length/thickness/strength of my hair, and also if there is any change in my nail growth/strength.

Love M xxx

P.S. Sorry for the bad quality pics. I took them with the camera on my phone.



Thursday, 24 May 2012

Update: Redken hair care products


A few weeks ago I mentioned in a blog post (find it here) that I had bought a few new Redken hair products and I thought it was time to let you know my thoughts on these products.



I have definitely fallen in love with all of these products, especially the Extreme Anti-Snap treatment. That stuff is truly amazing!  Since using the All Soft shampoo and conditioner and the anti-snap treatment, I have definitely noticed a change in my hair – it is softer, less bird’s nest, less frizzy and just so much more lovely. I actually started noticing a change very soon after starting to use these products.

Redken are more expensive than regular shop-bought hair products, but I can see why and I am willing to pay those prices for the results that I am getting. I go through conditioner really quickly, but the shampoo seems to go quite far and I definitely won’t have to repurchase the treatment anytime soon because a little goes a long way, which makes it even more worth the price.

So I am loving my recent purchases but am always keen to try out other products so let me know your holy grail of shampoos, conditioners etc.

Love M xx

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Garnier BB cream - finally!


I am so excited!


After reading copious amounts of reviews on how amazing the Garnier BB cream is, I am finally going to get my hands on it! You see, it is not available in South Africa yet. When a product is released in the UK, it usually takes a while to come here. I was just going to wait until that day finally arrived, but luckily I haven’t had to. My parents have just arrived in the UK on holiday and my mother has bought me the Garnier BB cream on a three for two special. Yay! So hopefully it will be just as amazing as all the reviews say it to be because when my parents return in a few weeks, I will have three tubes of the stuff (my sister will probably want to try one too, so actually only two). Anyways, so I am really excited and will let you know my thoughts when the stuff arrives J

Lv M xx

Friday, 11 May 2012

My two new Elizabeth Arden products

Hi all :)

I have recently bought/acquired two Elizabeth Arden products (my first ever), and I am very happy with them. The first is a Colour Intrigue Effects Lipstick in 03 mango cream.







My mom gave this to me as she had bought it and I was constantly using it whenever I saw her because it is just such a beautiful colour and I feel it really gives my face a lovely pop of colour. So that is my current lipstick of choice at the moment. As with all lipsticks I don't find it stays on that long, but it is definitely more moisturising than most lipsticks I have tried which makes it a winner in my books!

The second product is the Eight Hour Cream Sun Defence for Face SPF 50.


I got a few samples of this in a goodie bag a few weeks ago and I really liked it. It has currently replaced my Clinique City Block as I find this doesn't make my skin as oily as that one does even though both of these products are oil-free. I love the consistency of this cream and the feeling of it on my face. The only thing I do not like is the smell. Some reviews say it smells citrusy. I am not sure about that. It is not a terrible smell but it is just not my favourite smell. However, I find the smell goes away as soon as I start rubbing it into my face, so I am not too concerned.

Let me know if there are any other Elizabeth Arden products I should be checking out :)

Lv M xx

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Mini beauty haul

Hi everyone,

I hope you are all having a fab weekend. I just wanted to do a quick post on a mini-haul I did on Thursday. 


My hair has been looking a bit dry and sad recently so I thought I would treat it to some proper salon products, so I picked up Redken All Soft shampoo and conditioner, as well as Redken Extreme Anti-Snap treatment. Whilst I have used Redken before and love the products, I have never used these specific products before, but Laura and Pammy’s blog posts made me decide to give these a try. After one use I am already seeing a difference, but I will do a full follow up blog post on all of these products at a later stage.



I also bought my tried and tested, and all time favourite treatment, Lee Stafford ‘For Hair That Never Grows Past a Certain Length’.  This product is amazing and you can see my previous blog post on it here.



I also bought Clarins Blue Orchid face oil. I use this when my skin is dry and it is a wonder product.



Lastly I bought NYX Felt Tip Liner in dark brown for eyes. I use their black pen eyeliner and have wanted to get a brown one to use for daytime.


 Hope you all have a great week :)


Lv M xx

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Versatile Blogger Award

I am feeling super happy right now because the lovely Kaylie from http://pinkporcelain87.blogspot.com has awarded me with the versatile blogger award! I honestly feel so honoured especially because I am a new blogger. It is such a nice feeling to know that people enjoying reading my blog :) So thank you Kaylie! :)




These are the rules for the Versatile Blogger Award:
1Nominate 15 fellow bloggers who are relatively new to blogging*
2. Let them know that you have nominated them.
3. Share 7 random facts about yourself.
4. Thank the Bloggers that have nominated you.
5. Add the Versatile Blogger Award picture to your blog post.

*I am doing only 10 as I am new to this and don't have that many blogs that i follow just yet

So, 7 random facts about me:

1) I love Days of Our Lives. I know that it is soapie rubbish but I just find it so relaxing to come home after a day's work and watch some mindless television where I don't have to think ;)
2) I am qualified make-up artist with an Honours Degree in Psychology who is currently working as a grade 5 teacher. Kinda random mix, i know! 
3) I am really shy and don't like the attention to be on me. i am much happier to blend into the crowd.
4) I don't like animated movies.
5) I have one tattoo and might get another one. I used to have my nose pierced but grew out of that phase rather quickly.
6) I love to bake and like to think that I'm not too bad at it either.
7) My favourite places in the world are Amsterdam, Lisbon and of course Cape Town (where I live) :)


Blogs that I nominate:



Please check out these awesome blogs :)


Lv M xx

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Skin care

I am not a huge fan of my skin. Not only is it extremely sensitive and becomes red and blotchy at the slightest touch, but it is also combination with an oily T-zone, so I always have to use oil-free make-up products, and then I still tend to look like an oil-slick. On top of that I used to suffer from acne when I was teenager, but then had beautifully clear skin after a course of Roaccutane. However, thanks to that lovely thing called hormones, I once again am suffering from it (definitely not as bad as before, hardly bad actually, but still just enough that it’s upsetting). Aah, I just can’t win!

So I have to use products that are designed for sensitive skin because otherwise my skin gets irritated and becomes blotchy and is more likely to breakout. I have found the perfect products that seem to be working for me. So if you have the same problems as me, give these a try.

My routine is as follows:

Morning routine:


Morning (from left to right): Clarins Extra Comfort Toning Lotion, Clarins Extra Comfort Cleansing Cream, Innoxa  Gentle Moisturising Lotion, Clarins Multi Active Day Cream

I wash my face with Clarins Extra Comfort Cleansing Cream. This is a super gentle product as it is from their dry/sensitive range.  You put some on your hands and warm it up by rubbing your hands together, and then gently pat it onto a dry face and then rinse off.  I then follow this with my toner which is the Clarins Extra Comfort Toning Lotion (this is also from their dry/sensitive range). I have previously found toners to make my skin feel tight after use, as though they are drying out my skin, but this one doesn’t. I end off with either my Clarins Multi Active Day Cream or Innoxa Gentle Moisturising Lotion.  I use my Clarins moisturiser when my skin is feeling more thirsty/dry. It is a lovely product and makes my skin feel amazing. It also is a wrinkle prevention cream, which is not the worst thing to have. I use my Innoxa moisturiser when my skin is being its normal combination self, which is most days. I have been using the Clarins cream more because my sky has been drier lately. The reason for this is because my dermatologist has put me on a super low dose of Oratane, which is like Roaccutane, to sort out my minor problem of hormonal acne. I hate the word acne; it makes things sound worse than they are. Basically I have some blemishes that just won’t sort themselves out.


Clarins Multi Active Day Cream


Evening routine:

I wash off the day using Innoxa Gentle Triple-Action Gel Wash. All the Innoxa products I use are from their sensitive range, so they are all really gentle on my skin. This gel-wash is soap free and just so lovely. I follow with my Clarins toner. I then use Estee Lauder Idealist Illuminator, which you are meant to use under your moisturiser. I follow with my Clarins or Innoxa moisturiser.


Evening (from left to right): Innoxa Gentle Triple Action Gel Cleanser, Clarins Extra Comfort Toning Lotion, Estee Lauder Idealist Illuminator, Innoxa  Gentle Moisturising Lotion, Clarins Multi Active Day Cream 


I truly love all of these products. I know Clarins is quite expensive but I am willing to pay for their products because I think they are worth the money. I know that Innoxa is a South African brand, so I am not sure if you can get them in other countries

I have only recently started using the Estee Lauder Idealist Illuminator. It was recommended to me by my cousin (who has gorgeous skin I might add). Apparently it helps brighten the skin, dull redness, reduce the appearance of acne scars and discolouration. I don’t have any of that except for the redness and that is why I thought I would give it a try. My skin has been looking better but I don’t know if that is because of this product or because of the Oratane. I have noticed a slight reduction in the amount of redness in my skin and I do love the way this product feels on my face after I’ve just put it on (my skin feels really smooth). It is very expensive so I will finish what I have and then see what my skin looks like without using it. If I notice a difference, I will buy it again. But so far so good!

If you have any products (skincare or make-up) that you would recommend for sensitive skin, then please let me know. I would love to hear your comments.

Lv M xx

PS. I am not sponsored by any of these companies, I just happen to love their products :)

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

John Frieda Go Blonder Lightening Spray


I have started to use the John Frieda Go Blonder Controlled Lightening Spray on my darker blonde regrowth. I used to use a lightening spray (not sure which brand) a long time ago and it worked miracles, so I am hoping this does the same. I don’t mind my regrowth, but if this spray can lighten it and stretch out the time before I have to head back to the hairdresser for a touch-up, then it will definitely be worth it.

I found a review on it on a blog that I follow by the lovely Harriet and so thought I would give it a try. I will my document my results and let you know my thoughts.

*Update*
The picture below was taken after three uses (results are apparently visible after 3-5 uses). I do not have a before picture but I will post some more photos after a few more uses. I could already see a difference when taking this photo. I have now used the spray a fourth time and am really amazed. I can definitely see a change, even when my hair is wet. I will probably use the spray one or two more times and then will leave it for a while. I do not want to over-process my hair and I am quite happy with the colour thus far. It really has lightened it quite a bit. It means I can delay a visit to my hairdresser a bit longer, which is exactly what I was hoping for.


Would I recommend this product: Definitely! :)


Lv M xx



Monday, 9 April 2012

Update: Palmer's Natural Bronze Body Lotion


I recently did a review on Palmer’s Natural Bronze Body Lotion and thought I would show you the results.

This is after one application. I am very happy with the results. I am usually quite white so this is tanned for me. The only thing I will do differently next time is try not to wash too much off my hands as they are rather white in comparison to the rest of my body, and either use more powder bronzer on my face when doing my make-up or find a gradual tan lotion for face, as my face is also a tad too white in comparison. But I am happy and will continue to use this product.


Lv M xx



Saturday, 7 April 2012

Two of my must-have products


Yesterday I posted a blog about the foundations that I currently use. I also want to mention two other products that I use in conjunction with my foundation, and these are:

From left to right:
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer (oil-free)
Clinique City Block , SPF 25, oil-free daily face protector


I tend to wear my Clinique City Block every day, under my foundation. It is an oil-free daily face protector as it has an SPF of 25. I know most of my foundations have an SPF in them, but I don’t tend to put foundation all over my face, only on the areas that need it. So I use my sun cream to make sure my whole face is protected. Apparently wrinkles are 90% environment (sun damage) and 10% genetic, and while I can’t do anything about my genetics, I can do something about the amount of sun damage my face gets. 

I also really like the Clinique City Block because it acts like a tinted moisturiser in that the cream is foundation-coloured, and gives you a light coverage. I don’t tend to wear it on its own, but it does even out my complexion to some degree, which means I tend to wear less foundation over it, which I like.

I have been using this product for years now and I don’t plan to stop. I might however consider looking at the City Block with a higher SPF because my skin is now more susceptible to sun damage (blog about this at a later stage).

The other product which I like to use is my Smashbox Photo Primer, which is an oil-free foundation primer. I really love this product because it tends to make my foundation last longer and also helps that my skin doesn’t become as oily during the day. I have definitely noticed a difference in that I don’t have to reapply powder during the day as much as I usually would have to.

Lv M xx

Friday, 6 April 2012

My foundations

As a trained make-up artist, I love to try out new foundations. I have rather oily skin and am always on the lookout for a foundation that will stay put throughout the day and not slide off, give me good coverage but not look caked on, and not leave me looking like an oil slick. I have yet to find a foundation that scores 10 out of 10 for all of these categories. If you can recommend a foundation that you think is great for oily skin, then please let me know.

I used to use Bobbi Brown Luminous foundation. It used to work for me when my skin was more normal/a little bit oily, but then my skin became even oilier and I couldn't use it anymore because I would become an oil slick far too easily. For those of you who have more dry/normal skin, then I would suggest you give it a try. It is on the more expensive side, but it truly is a lovely foundation. It gave me such great coverage without looking caked on and felt lovely to the touch. Another really good thing about Bobbi Brown foundations is that they have a yellow undertone whilst most foundations have a pink undertone. This is good because most of us have a yellow undertone in our skin and not a pink undertone, so I try to stay away from foundations that are too 'pink' (maybelline is one of them).

Here are the foundations that I now currently use: 

From left to right:
Max Factor  Facefinity Compact (03 Natural)
MAC Studio Fix Fluid (NW20)
Revlon ColorStay Stay Active (004 Natural Beige)
Revlon New Complexion (05 Natural Beige)



All of the above are oil-free which is a must for any foundation that I use. Just a few comments on these foundations:

Max Factor Facefinity Compact:
This provides a light to medium coverage so it is perfect for when my skin is having one of it's better looking days and I don't want much coverage. It evens out my complexion and gives a lovely satin finish, just like the box says. I do find that I need to reapply this during the day as it starts to wear off a bit, but the great part is that it is like a liquid foundation and powder in one, so I just use this and there is no need to apply powder afterwards.I find this a huge plus because it means I don't tend to become oily during the day. I do think that the shade that I use (no. 03 natural) is a tad too dark for me. Another huge drawing card of this product is that I can keep it in my bag without any worry of it messing. The packaging is very convenient. 

MAC Studio Fix Fluid:
I love, love, love this foundation! The colour (NW20) is perfect because it was matched properly at the MAC store and it has a yellow undertone which I like. It gives a medium to heavy coverage so I tend to only use it at night because I like a lighter coverage during the day, but it is perfect for my bad skin days because it covers all! It is oil-free and has an SPF of 15 (sun protection is very important to me). I do find that I need to reapply my powder during the day because this does become a bit oily on my face. However, I find I need to do that with all liquid foundations. This is one of my fav foundations.

Revlon Colorstay Stay Active:
A friend who uses this foundation recommended it to me. I like it but I do not feel like there is anything special about it. It is oil-free and has an SPF of 25, but I find that my skin really gets oily with this foundation. I don't really use this foundation anymore because soon after buying it, Revlon brought out...

Revlon New Complexion:
I really like this foundation and it is the one I use on a daily basis. The colour suits my skin and it provides a light to medium (and heavier if you layer it) coverage which is perfect for the daytime. My skin becomes slightly oily during the day so I do need to touch up with powder, but as I mentioned, I need to do that with all foundations. When compared to my MAC foundation, I do notice a slight pink undertone, but it is so slight that I do not mind. 


So those are my foundations at the moment. I am always keen to try out others, so if you have any that you can recommend to someone with oily skin, then please let me know. I am keen to try out the foam and mousse foundations. I also used to use a Clinique foundation way back when which I really liked, so I think I may try Clinique again. Anyone use any of their foundations and can recommend?

I look forward to hearing what foundations you use and what you like/don't like.

Lv M xx



Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Review: Revlon Colourburst Lip Colour

I was recently looking for a coral-coloured lipstick when I came across the new Revlon Colourburst Lip Colour collection. The colour that caught my eye was no. 020 Papaya.






I love this colour. It is exactly the coral colour I was looking for. It is so vibrant and really perks my mood up. I also like the consistency of this lip gloss. It is not sticky and feels soft and lovely on my lips. I do however find that it does not last very long on my lips. Having said that, I have yet to find a lip gloss/lipstick that actually does last very long on my lips. I am used to reapplying lip glosses/sticks often and this gloss was no exception.

Would I buy this product again?
For the colour, yes. I do not tend to buy the same lip glosses again unless I am completely and totally blown away by them as I like to try out other brands and lip products, so I probably won't be buying this specific lip gloss again any time soon. I do however like Revlon's products so I will try out some of their other lip products when the need arises.

If you have tried this product or intend to try it, let me know what you think.

Wearing Revlon Colourburst in no. 020 Papaya


Lv M xx




Review: Palmer's Natural Bronze Body Lotion

Hello all!

After a few months of absence, I am back! I started a new job in January and have been very busy, but am now on holiday so have some time to blog. I hope to keep it going as I should have more free time in the future. So onto my review...

I recently bought Palmer's Natural Bronze Body Lotion. It cost around R60 from Dischem. It is a gradual tanning moisturiser and not an instant self-tanner. I read some reviews on it online and thought I would give it a shot.



I applied it in the evening as some of the reviews had suggested. I first exfoliated and shaved before applying it over my whole body. I even mixed a tiny amount with my facial moisturiser and put it on my face. It does have quite a strong smell but it is not a bad smell - my boyfriend said I smelt like a biscuit. So this is why it is recommended that you put it on at night, so that it can develop overnight and you can shower in the morning and wash off the smell. I also made sure to wash my hands properly after applying, and I also used a pumice on my feet so that I wouldn't have any tell-tale signs that I used this product.

Needless to say, I was very happy with the result the next morning. I had a lovely glow which did not look fake at all. I showered just to get rid of the smell, which did then go away. In the shower, I made sure not to scrub myself as I did not want to risk wiping any colour off. I also patted myself dry rather than rubbing with a towel so as to avoid removing colour.

I would definitely purchase and use this product again. It works so much better than other gradual tan lotions which I find take forever to give any colour. I can use Palmer's Natural Bronze once and have an instant glow without having to worry about looking orange and fake.

Pros:
  • Develops overnight 
  • Beautiful glowing skin that does not look orangey or fake
  • Easy to apply

Cons:

  • Feels sticky on skin after application (but feels fine once it has soaked in and you have had your morning shower)
  • Strong smell
  • Starts to fade after about 2 days and then needs to be reapplied
  • Not specifically designed for your face

    Would I recommend this product?: Yes



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