Wednesday, May 1, 2013

April Favourites

This month hasn't been the most adventurous in terms of makeup. I've reverted back to Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow for my base, relied on the most brainless and fuss-free options for eyeshadow, and tried to switch up my blush almost every day (as you do, when you have about 17 varieties of essentially the same thing). My favourite products for April are more about finding the right tools to be able to appreciate or better use what I already have. I also love the loud, bright lip for a night out, continue to happily dabble in face oils, and discover what it means to have a good-enough-to-eat shower experience.



philosophy Cinnamon Buns Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath
I was ecstatic when I found The Cookbook set of Old Fashioned Eggnog, Hot Buttered Rum, Cinnamon Buns and Peppermint Bark (120ml each) on sale at David Jones for $24. I was tempted to buy it at full price last Christmas, but wasn't prepared to spend $49 on four small bottles of shower gel. It did go on sale post-Christmas, but I still wasn't too keen on spending $34. But with a further 30% discount? I didn't hesitate. My favourite of the four would definitely be Cinnamon Buns. Every time I use this in the shower and lather it all over, I'm enveloped by deliciousness and I just want to take a bite out of my arm. Creamy and scrumptious.


Caudalie Divine Oil
I've been wanting to try Divine Oil for a while now (ever since Estée wrote about it in August last year), but it was this recent review by Emma that finally swayed me. I was determined to find out what the fuss was about. I didn't particularly want to splurge on the 100ml bottle in case I hated it, but stumbled across the Must Have Set on Feelunique and thought it would be an ideal way to test the waters (and also replenish my dwindling supply of the Beauty Elixir). I haven't been using it for too long, but I find that it delivers similar results to my Antipodes Divine Face Oil. I like mixing it with my moisturiser at night for a hydrating, nourishing boost to the skin. I also tried pouring a bit onto my hands, rubbing them together and gently patting my face with it after I'd already moisturised, but all that did was leave my skin feeling extremely greasy. Maybe I just put too much, but it's very hard to control the amount when the packaging comes without a pump. The floral scent is very strong, so those sensitive to fragrance might want to stay away.



Sigma F82 Round Top Kabuki
One morning, I realised my Real Techniques Buffing Brush was in desperate need of a thorough clean, to the extent that I wasn't all that comfortable with the idea of using it on my face. Hygiene was one factor, but application issues from a dirty brush was probably the main concern. I fished out my oft-neglected Sigma F82 from my brush holder and began using it, and continued to every day for almost the whole month.

I'm normally hesitant to use the Sigma F82 because it's hard and punishing labour to clean. But it's worth it. Because of the sheer density of the bristles, it's probably the closest thing to mimicking the effect of using your hands to smooth out foundation over your face. It results in a completely streak-free, second skin finish. It's a bit more work to use than the Real Techniques Buffing Brush because the brush itself is harder, denser, larger and heavier, but it really works a treat for liquid foundation. I've been using the Real Techniques Stippling Brush exclusively to apply my Make Up For Ever HD foundation, but I tried it with the Sigma F82, and the results were much better, only reinforcing my belief in the brilliance of this brush.

Models Prefer Mystique Angled Blush Brush
I picked this up from my recent Priceline haul, and I honestly didn't have high expectations about the quality or functionality. It was more for the novelty of finally having an angled blush brush in my collection. Despite initial concern when it shed a few hairs after I first washed it, I haven't been using anything else to apply my blush since I bought it. What I most like about this brush is that the softness and shape of the bristles make it ideal for more highly pigmented blushes. I don't have to worry about the brush picking up too much product. It strikes a seriously good balance between blendability and control, and the relative ease of application when I use it has encouraged me to rediscover blushes that I don't give a lot of love to.


Maybelline ColorSensational Vivids in Fuchsia Flash
I ended up buying 5 of the Vivids lipsticks, a fact that's slightly more horrifying to me than pleasing, given a) I don't even wear lipstick that much b) I easily have over 50 lipsticks. Of the Vivids I bought, Fuchsia Flash is my definite favourite. It's a lipstick I look forward to being able to wear for a casual dinner with friends or a girls' night out. I love that it's so similar to MAC Pink Pigeon and MAC Candy Yum Yum. That alone is super exciting to me. Intense colour payoff, not drying, wears evenly and doesn't stain too much. Consider me impressed.

49 comments:

  1. I feel like I just read a picture story-book. The way you write has me just reading from one line to the next! These are great favorites and I've been really wanting to try Philosophy Shower Gels but they can be a bit pricy even with the gift sets. Lucky you to have found it so cheap! & Maybelline's Vivids are also making their way into my April Favorites. The color, formula, and just everything is amazing about these lipsticks!

    - Jess
    The Mod Mermaid

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    1. YES. That's why she's my favourite! I love the way she writes and her pictures are absolutely glorious.

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    2. Thank you so much for such a sweet comment :) I've wanted to try philosophy shower gels for a while also, and finally got the opportunity when they were on sale. The Vivids are amazing, so glad that I bought them even though I may have gone overboard :p

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  2. Fuschia Flash is a lovely one! I'm glad you liked the models prefer brush, I purchased one from them a while back that deserved 2 thumbs down. Great post as always lovely! :)

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  3. I have that Sigma brush. I'm quite fond of it for my concealer!

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  4. Caudalie Divine oil is one of my favorite oils. I use it on my hair, to prevent split ends, and as a body oil after the shower, when my skin is still damp. Have you tried it that way?

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    1. I haven't! I'm trying to use the tiny bottle I have for my face, though I'll keep it in mind to try it for my hair or body as you've suggested :)

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  5. You make that Sigma brush sound like HEAVEN. Pure sweet delight... similar to how you made that philosophy shower gel sound. Heck, this whole post was just scrumptious to read through (as per usual). And also, thanks for writing a review of the Caudalie that includes more than the words "AH-mazing"; I've been thinking about it but it sounds like it's not right for me after all :)

    Cassie
    thriftthick.blogspot.com

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  6. I can relate to your feeling on picking up 5 Maybelline vivid lipsticks. I have no clue how many I own, but I knew I had to have at least 1 (I wound up with 3.....). Love the colour you selected!

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  7. Fuchsia Flash is the exact pink lipstick I've been looking for. The pop of such colour is just perfect for Spring, isn't it?

    Sandra - The Puzzle of Sandra's Life

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  8. I've been looking for something a bit more heavy duty to use in place of my Real Techniques Expert Face brush (which I love, don't get me wrong!), as it takes quite a while for everything to sink in as it should. So over the weekend I purchased the Sigma F80 flat top kabuki, but judging by your review, I may have to go back in for an F82! It looks very ideal xx

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    1. I think if you have the F80 it's not necessary to also get the F82 - they're pretty much the same brush but one with rounded edges. Hope you do enjoy the F80 when you start using it! :)

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  9. I was a bit scared to pick up any of the Vivids too since I'm not a big bold lipstick kinda girl, but I've always wanted to try MAC's Pink Pigeon. For the price and quality I might have to go get this one now! xx

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  10. i agree, it's such a chore to wash dense brushes, it takes ages to get those bubbles out x) great post xx

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  11. I definitely need to invest in Sigma brushes! Also, I must tell you that your photos always make me want to buy EVERYTHING! x

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  13. I love every Caudalie product I've ever tried. The Divine Oil is really nice and I love that the big size comes as a spray that disperses well wherever you apply it. I'm on a bright lipstick kick at the moment, too, but I actually do wear one almost everyday. At the moment I'm a bit obsessed with the Rimmel Apocalips lipsticks.

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  14. I never tried any Sigma brushes..but that one is going on my list!
    The Divine Oil worked lovely for me but I don't think I'll use it for my face..it seems a little risky!

    www.cocoamourr.com
    x

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  15. I have as well the mini version of the caudalie divine oil but mine has a spray pump,it is so practical and i bought it for 5€ only ^^
    i like the oil but I recently tried the ol magique from l'oreal and it is indeed a magic oil. it works so well not only for my hair ( as it is intended to ) but as well as my dry elbows or heels. and it is cheaper than caudalie :D

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  16. The cinnamon butter sounds amazing :) x

    www.krystelcouture.com

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  17. Never tried any philosophy shower stuff but the cinnamon bitter sounds worthy to try for the price haha. I also havent gotten the chance to pick up any maybelline vivids lipstick but fuschia flash looks really pretty! :)

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  18. These are wonderful picks. I was recently able to try the Caudalie Divine Oil and have found it to be a great product as well. Additionally, I have been loving brighter lipstick shades as well. :] Take care!

    <3 Carolyn

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  19. Great favourites list - I definitely need to replenish my philosophy shower gel

    dolcebeautyx.blogspot.com.au

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  20. Caudalie and F82 are my faves as well :)

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  21. Loved this post, I need to try some Philosophy products!

    rmhlifestyle.blogspot.com

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  22. I love using Angled Blush Brushes - mine is from Sephora! And I totally understand what you mean about cleaning the F82 - cleaning my MAC 130 is a total pain because it just is so dense on top, despite being a duo-fibre brush. But its a price worth paying! xx

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  23. I'm obsessed with my Sigma F80, I think I might have to try out the F82 as well!

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  24. The Caudalie Divine Oil sounds nice, although the sheer fact that it doesn't have a pump or dropper puts me off from trying it- if its application is difficult, I am less likely to use a product (same with Bio Oil, although quite frankly I don't like it purely because of its strong, powder/soap scent). I haven't had the urge to purchase any Sigma brushes but the F82 does look gorgeous, although I don't think I could bear cheating on my Real Techniques Buffing brush which I love to bits. I love it when you have no expectations for a product but it amazes you- glad to hear that the angled blush brush did this for you!

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    1. The 100ml bottle has a spray pump and I have read reviews about a smaller bottle also containing one, so I'm not sure why mine didn't have one. Really does make it difficult to use as you have to pour a little bit out each time. I adore my RT Buffing Brush - it'll always be my love. Now that I finally dragged my lazy ass to wash it, we are reunited once more :p

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  25. I have decided I need to add that Models Prefer brush to my wish list. I have a similar shaped brush from Napoleon Perdis set (my favourite brush line, NP in general are ace for brushes I've found) and can get lazy about washing it, so this might be the rotating buddy for it. I neglected to pick up anything from the Christmas release from Philosophy (crazy, I know) but I love your description of Cinnamon Buns.

    As an aside, absolutely enthralled with your musings on here. Words are perfection and photos even better, thanks for so enjoyable to read :)

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    1. Awww thank you so much! Means a lot coming from you, especially since your blog is one of my absolute favourites and I genuinely am interested in and enjoy all that you share.

      I haven't tried any Napoleon Perdis brushes though I have been tempted when I've been to Target. I'm sure those are much better quality than the MP. I probably wouldn't have bought the MP if it wasn't 40% off, and similarly may not have been as happy with it :p

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  26. That vivids lipstick is just WOW! Stunning :)
    Lovely faves, lots of products I haven't heard of before :)

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  27. The divine oil sounds amazing & that lipstick shade is stunning <3

    Jennie xo | sailorjennie.com

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  28. I definitely have to treat myself to some new brushes

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  29. Great favourites Lena. I'd love to try Caudalie products, they're on every blog and most people seem to really like them. I bet that bright pink lippy looks gorgeous on you : ) Good-enough-to-eat shower experiences are the best! xx

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  30. Really happy you like the Divine Oil too! that Must Have Set is a really great buy for anyone who wants to try out Caudalie but doesn't want to buy full size expensive products! Although I'd still love it myself! :)

    Emma x

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  31. I've been debating the F82 brush for a while, I think you've now sold it too me!

    xoxo

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  32. I really want to try the Divine Oil, Sephora has it in the mini version and it sounds lovely. It kinda sucks that it doesn't have a pump or something like that but I can tell it's a great multipurpose oil! xx

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  33. True about the same shades of blushes. Mine are all pink! Lol.

    I cringed at the cinnamon scent. I hate anything cinammon.. Lol.

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  34. Ooo I NEED to get my paws on some of these Maybelling Lipsticks.. I've herd soo many good reviews about them now.. :)

    Lovely post I love reading Monthly favourites -I just posted mine if you fancy checking them out

    Love Em, from www.dollhousebeautyblog.blogspot.co.uk

    New Follower <3

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  35. Maybelline Vivid lipsticks are amazing, right? I am in love with their Shocking Coral. x
    Shang J.| The Feminine Crusade

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  36. You have interesting favorites but all are really cool. Fuchsia Flash is a really splarkle and cute color. I can use this color everyday because I love it the pink color on my lip. Is the first time than I see this product Caudalie Divine Oil looks interesting but I don´t know if this product can be good for my oily skin. That brushes looks really cool many thanks for share sweetie you favorites are really cool.

    xoxo

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  37. You have the most beautiful photography :))) I have this very shade, and I am in love with it for real... it's amazing! I want the Shocking Coral Shade now, although I wish the packaging was the colour of the lipstick inside. that would be amazing xx

    Gemma ♥ | Miss Makeup Magpie

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  38. Fuchsia Flash looks soo pretty, I think I might end up getting it instead of Candy Yum Yum. The Models prefer brush actually looks pretty good! I mainly use the Sigma F82 to blend in concealer, I can tell that if I used it for foundation it would be horrible to clean like you've said! xx

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  39. I'd love to try some Sigma brushes but I'm not entirely sure of their availability in the UK. Definitely going to have browse tonight as I feel my RT buffing brush is looking a bit worn!

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  40. I really, really want to try out the Caudalie Divine Oil, sounds perfect for a multi-purpose addict like me. Need to have a sniff off somewhere first though! x

    Evelyn @ We Were Raised By Wolves

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  41. Fuchsian Flash indeed looks quite beautiful.
    i've been disappointed from most of my maybelline purchases for the past few years, but i feel like trying this range out.:)

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  42. I now want all of these items! I've had my eye on the Caudalie oil for a while but just couldnt justify spending so much in case I didn't like it, a mini size would be a perfect way to try it out! xx

    Angelica // OneLittleVice

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  43. I just ordered the Caudalie Must Haves set! I've been wanting to try the Beauty Elixir for so long it's about time I did. I haven't tried the Vivids line yet but the new Maxfactor Giant Pen Stick lip crayons are worth a look-I was hoping to get Subtle Coral but that shade seemed to have passed on Australia so I bought Vibrant Pink instead. Quite the stretch for me, that shade...
    I had a whiff of the Cinnamon Buns at Mecca and it smells so nice! Lucky you, finding the set so well-priced.

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