Caudalie Divine Oil + water in spray bottle
I call this my DIY glowy finishing mist. This isn't the first time I've featured this lil invention of mine on the blog, but something inspired me to revisit it in June. Probably because I was regretting omitting the Tony Moly Luminous Goddess Aura Makeup Mist from my Korean makeup/skin care haul, so I had to make do with my own creation. I take my Daiso spray bottle, fill it up with tap water that's been boiled and cooled down (staple in any Asian household), then spritz some Caudalie Divine Oil into the water. It's a bit of trial and error how much Divine Oil I need to put in, but at least 7-8 sprays. Enough so that when I mist my face (shaking the bottle to combine the oil and water before each use), there is a distinct but subtle dewiness coming through. I honestly think the effect is very similar to something like Caudalie Beauty Elixir or MAC Fix+, though I haven't tried the latter personally. It's not going to set my makeup and make it last longer, but it brings some life back into my face if my makeup's looking a little heavy and cakey or over-powdered. Works great on bare skin as well for a pick me up and injection of radiance.
Rimmel Glam'Eyes Day 2 Night Mascara
Finally cracked open this mascara after it was sitting in my makeup drawer for an age. Surprisingly, it hadn't completely dried out. The opposite — the wand is loaded with product. This could be problematic if the brush didn't work as well as it does. It loads the mascara on so there's instant definition and volume, but then combs through the lashes to get rid of clumps and separate the lashes. This is one of those newfangled mascaras with dual functionality thanks to a "2-in-1 magic cap", where you have the choice of your mascara wand coming out of the "Volume" or "Length" section. I've photographed the "Volume" mascara — the "Length" one basically has a more defined, separated wand with much less mascara gloop on it. I'm not a fan of the "Length" (mainly because it seems devoid of product), but "Volume" is a winner. The only slight negative is that if you're thinking of multiple coats, do it while it's still wet. It will flake onto your face if you try another coat after the first has dried.
Narciso Rodriguez Narciso EDP
I caved and bought this after wanting it for half a year (interestingly, or perhaps not interestingly at all, the only other item on that wishlist I've bought is the Zoeva rose gold brush set). In my defence, the 50ml bottle was on sale in a set with a 75ml body lotion for $82.60. Not the bargain of the century, but acceptable considering the 50ml bottle on its own is $118. Despite my bloated perfume collection, I honestly don't have anything like Narciso. It's perfect for this time of year; the cold air, rugging up in knits, trying to keep cosy and warm. It smells rich, intoxicating, evocative of skin, musk, cleanness. Radiant and refined. It's woodsy, soapy, powdery, floral. Top notes of gardenia and rose, heart of musk, base notes of vetiver, black cedar and white cedar. I get why it might not be everyone's cup of tea, but I find myself increasingly drawn to powdery, soapy perfumes despite their potential granny factor. I had to even scour the internet to find a backup bottle of my beloved but tragically discontinued Chloé Love, Chloé. In the end, I paid a pretty penny to have one delivered to me, though the transaction wasn't entirely above board. (That's a totally different story, suffice it to say esavingsfreshscents.com.au sells perfumes with the serial number etched off and then insists it's standard industry practice to prevent fraud.)
Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes
Yes, I know. Shudder. Caroline Hirons and Sali Hughes would be horrified I'm including makeup wipes here, not that either know of my existence. But I can't help it, I've been using these wipes to remove my makeup when I get home from work, and they've probably knocked off Swisspers Cucumber Facial Cleansing Wipes as the best wipes I've used. I like that they're decently wet so it's not like you're scrubbing your face with a paper towel. Vitally, they don't sting or irritate my skin, despite some vigorous, repeated rubbing. They also get everything bar eye makeup off (still need Bioderma for that). I know, because when I start on the Bioderma for my eyes and then use the other side of the cotton pad for my face, not much comes off. I still follow up with a cleansing milk (trying out the Innoxa one that I scored from the Priceline skin care bag, not hating it, but definitely not loving it), and the end result is refreshed, clean-feeling, balanced skin.
Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadow/Liner in Busy Signal + Ecotools Bamboo Angled Eyeliner Brush
Back to this old faithful and not entirely sure why I stopped. Busy Signal is truly one of the best makeup purchases I've made. It's been years and it shows zero signs of drying out, unlike pretty much every other cream shadow I have. It hasn't even slightly shrunk around the edges or changed texture in any way. It's still soft, smooth, emollient and ultra pigmented. The colour is complex and beautiful, it lasts all day and doesn't budge. I've used it consistently over the years and the surface is only mildly scratched. Not sure if I'll finish it in the next decade. If that isn't value, I'm not eating chocolate every day like it's good for me. I've been reaching for the Ecotools eyeliner brush to apply Busy Signal to my lower lash line every single day. Lately, I've also been playing around with a slightly longer, subtly flicked up shape for my liner using my Dolly Wink Liquid Eyeliner, and the precision of the Angled Eyeliner Brush is ideal for joining the lower lash line to the upper for an overall larger, more extended eye.
Rosebud Perfume Co. Rosebud Salve
I've actually had this lip balm since my trip to New York in late 2012, but only opened it recently. It's brought welcome relief to dry, chapped lips during winter. It's powerfully perfumed which I don't mind, though I can see why it would be off-putting to some. While it's basically fancy Vaseline, it does feel soothing and relieving on the lips, and I like that it imparts a fresh, easygoing shine to my naturally pigmented lips which makes it look like I'm wearing a tinted gloss.
And now ... I don't ever do this, but I simply had to include one non-beauty favourite. Because the joy it's brought me at least deserves a mention on this blog.
Gorman Pom Pom Pom Scarf in Grey
Words can't capture my love for this scarf. It is my dream. Because BALLZ. Look at those colourful spheres of fluff and tell me perfection doesn't exist. Whoever said money can't buy happiness hasn't bought this scarf. And I'd understand, since it was damn hard to acquire. Not to mention the kind of expensive that can only be justified in a crazed state. Bank balance says I'm poorer, heart says I am oh so richer.