Tuesday, October 6, 2015

September Favourites

For half of September I was on holidays in the US, and for the second half I was adjusting to resuming work and my normal daily life (including blogging). It's funny how a holiday is commonly acknowledged as a short-lived fantasy, wholly divorced from one's tedious, mundane, and burdensome reality. Everyone we spoke to while abroad invariably described the end point of a holiday as going "back to reality". Indeed. In terms of favourite products for the month, like this time last year post-Japan, half are products I brought with me in my makeup bag to the States, half are new products I purchased over there.

Oribe Dry Texturising Spray
I hated the fact I loved this product so much after I liberally sprayed some in my hair while at Bloomingdale's (they have a Space.NK.apothecary inside). Seriously hated it, because this stuff is not cheap. I don't take the decision to buy a $42 USD hair product lightly (a sickening $66 AUD), but it was the last day of my holidays, I'd been sitting on the fence about whether to buy it for most of the trip, and I didn't want to regret not taking it home. Oribe is apparently stocked in Sydney, but a) I don't go into swanky hair salons b) I can't be bothered making a special trip to Paddington or wherever just to buy it.

I tried to convince myself with various texturising sprays that I don't need the Oribe (from the ineffectual Garnier Fructis Full & Luscious Volume Booster Spray, to the hairsprayish Charles Worthington Volume & Bounce Texturising Spray, to the close contender amika Un.Done Texture Spray), but really, as is the case with any product I covet but mentally close off the possibility of buying because it's too expensive, I should've just gone straight for what I really want. The Oribe is the best of the bunch. It's just that touch more refined, better smelling, less crunchy in my hair, and effective. It creates long lasting volume, doubles up as a mild dry shampoo, gives the hair added texture and slight grit so it's a bit more piecey and beachy, and smells like an expensive hair perfume. I think the amika is close enough and like, half the price, but I can't deny I like the Oribe just that touch more.

Bottom to top: Ivory Bisque, Peach Pop, Black Honey, At Dusk, Morning Java, Bronze Satin

Clinique Limited Edition All About Shadow Palette
I just talked about it in this post, so I won't ramble on for too long here. But basically, this palette has been such a standout among the products I purchased while in the US. Even more surprising, given it was included in a gift with purchase. I've been really impressed with the pigmentation and application of the shadows, especially the incredibly vibrant and metallic At Dusk.

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara
I packed this mascara in my makeup bag to the US, and my appreciation for it only grew as time went on. Before my trip, my first impressions were that it wasn't all that voluminising, but since using it daily in the States, I don't really know what I was going on about. Maybe the mascara needed some time to dry out and for the formula to become more clumpy and less wet, but I now think it does a great job at separating, lengthening, darkening and thickening. What I like about Lash Sensational is that it's a solid all-rounder that's ultra reliable. If you want a mascara that will deliver noticeable results, quickly and without fuss, it ticks the boxes. While hurriedly slapping on makeup in front of whatever mirrored surface the hotel room had, I'd haphazardly whack some of this on my tragic Asian lashes and it really made a difference.

MAC Prep + Prime Fix+
I feel like I'm very late to the bandwagon with this one. Fix+ never particularly appealed to me, I think in large part because I never find myself drawn to MAC's packaging. But I'm becoming somewhat obsessed with facial mists and sprays, and Fix+ is such a staple that I had to try it. I bought the 30ml mini from the MAC store on Powell St in San Francisco for $10 USD, since the full 100ml size would've been more expensive than if I'd bought it from Australia ($35 vs $27), and I wanted to sample it first. I started to immediately use it while on holiday, and it was instant loovveee. This stuff is all my glowy, milky, hydrated skin fantasies in a bottle. Combined with a dewy foundation and radiance-boosting sunscreen, my skin was at next level luminosity, right on the brink of too much. The ingredients seem kind to the skin (even Paula's Choice Beautypedia gave it a positive review) and it doesn't leave my skin feeling dry or irritated in the slightest. I do have to say if I'm not careful with distributing the mist evenly, it can disturb the surface of my foundation, so after most of the product has dried, I'll take a look at my face and gently blend out with my finger any areas of unevenness. I'm converted and will likely buy a full bottle in the future.

Maybelline Fit Me Concealer in Sand
I've had this for a while, but it was only after I packed it in my holiday makeup bag that I realised just how damn amazing it is. On days when I didn't feel like wearing a base all over (the other option I brought was Bobbi Brown BB Cream), I would place the concealer under my eyes, around the sides and down the bridge of my nose, around the corners of my mouth, in a three-pronged V-shape on my forehead, and whatever residual product was left on the applicator on my cheeks. Then I'd blend it all out with my finger in a tapping motion. I'd achieve the same or fuller coverage than the Bobbi Brown BB Cream, but the product would actually stick to my face rather than slide right off. But more than that, the finish was SO luminous. Not in a shimmery or even sheeny way, but luminous in a natural, undetectable, glow-from-within way. I never realised just how radiance-boosting the Fit Me Concealer is until I used it as an alternative to foundation. Quality stuff.

Real Techniques Setting Brush
I felt it was important to include this brush in my favourites, because almost three and a half years ago (gulp), I reviewed it and didn't understand it at all. In that post, I didn't even mention the Setting Brush could be used to apply concealer (only for setting concealer under the eyes or spot powdering...)! I've been loving using the Setting Brush to apply concealer to areas of my face that need extra coverage — it's the ideal size, shape and density to blend product into the skin seamlessly. The bristles are super soft and don't irritate the delicate under eye area at all. I've also been reaching for it to apply powder highlighter, particularly Dior Diorskin Poudre Shimmer in Amber Diamond. I run the brush across the different coloured strips and apply the highlighter to the top of cheekbones and under the browbone. Because Amber Diamond is a bit harder and drier in texture compared with softer, creamier highlighters like theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer or Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Champagne Pop, it calls for a firmer, flatter brush to pick up product, which the Setting Brush is perfect for.


  1. I love the Maybelline concealer and mascara, I use both of those myself! I'm definitely going to have to try out some of these other products if I get the chance!

    Kendal // Life With Kendal

  2. Buen dia..la paleta de sombras es perfecta..que colores lindos,
    El de MAC tengo..uso siempre..ya esta por se terminar!

  3. What lovely faves and I really want to try that mascara and that palette looks so pretty.

    Jackie | fashionxfairytale |

  4. The clinique palette looks gorgeous! x

  5. That Maybelline Fit Me concealer is so good but never attracts the hype it deserves :(

    The Beauty Locker

  6. Real Technique brushes are so awesome. I have used the setting brush for years and washed it zillion times and it still holds up perfect.

  7. The Clinique palette looks great, I'm really positively surprised by the pigmentation! I heard so many raves about the Lash Sensational mascara I should finally give it a try, x


  8. I have recently discovered the maybelline lash sensational mascara.. When I say recently I mean around 2 months and how my lashes manage to curl up and waken my eyes is incredible. I seriously am in love with this mascara. Lovely post.


  9. I just bought the Maybelline mascara and I'm not that impressed. But I guess you're right and it needs its time to dry out a bit so I will keep using it :). Oh and that clinique palette looks amazing! Too bad it's a LE :/

    Sue | zuzanahumajova.com

  10. Ok I really really need to try that Maybelline concealer now. How is it compared to the age rewind eraser?

    1. Never tried that one so unfortunately I can't comment on the differences!

  11. That clinique palette is beautiful!

    Lauren xo | laurenselwood.co.uk

  12. The last four products have been my favourites for quite some time now and I also really like the look of the Clinique palette :)


  13. Oribe really is the best, nothing else is as good! I find it lasts a long time so definitely worth the $$$!

    Jo | A Little Pop Of Coral

  14. I want to try the Oribe spray so bad! Love the Real Techniques setting brush, it went unused in my routine for far too long too!

    Danielle's Beauty Blog

  15. Whoah I think I need to give MAC Fix+ a try! same like you, I don't really find MAC packaging and products in general very appealing, but assuming from your review, I need MAC Fix+ in my life. LOL.
    The Oribe spray sounds great! I need texturising spray too as my hair is really flat when it's not styled. But I guess I'd better not start with it xD

  16. I love the Maybelline FitMe Concealer! I also use Sand :) It really is great for those no makeup- days!

    The Clinique palette looks gorgeous!! Awesome pick up!

  17. I LOVE both Fix+ and Lash Sensational, brilliant products :)
    Beauty Wanderer

  18. Oooh you've got me tempted to try Fix +. It's been a cult fave for ages but I've never seen the appeal. Now that I'm getting into setting sprays though, it seems only right I should try the original haha! I did just buy UD All Nighter so I'm excited to give that a go. Mhmm, I'm back in love with Maybelline Fit Me concealer as well - it's so great!

    Tasha // shiwashiful.

  19. I love the Clinique palette ;) I can't believe you got that in the promo! They don't have them anymore. It's gorgeous! I hope you get a lot of uses out of it =)

  20. Heard so much about Oribe, but it's crazy expensive!! And everyone is raving about Lash Sensational - I've had mine for a while now but still in its package!! Can't wait to get into it.

  21. Such wonderful pictures. I so want to try the Maybelline fit me concealer and Mac prep and prime is a very hyped product. Great picks!

    Chaste & Beautiful

  22. Lovely favorites! I really have been wanting to get that Fit Me concealer! It's not sold in our drugstores here at all but I know where to order it! I've been using that mascara from maybelline for only a couple weeks but I love how defining it is! It's a great natural looking but also boosting formula, not so natural that it's not noticable! I'm like you and I totally use brushes for what they're not intended for! Lastly, I WANT TO STEAL THAT PALETTE FROM YOU. All the shades are incredibly beautiful!

  23. I love the Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara, it's incredible! x

    Under Blue Lights

  24. Love all your picks! I wish you didn't love the Oribe spray either because now I don't think I can ignore it when I'm in the states T_T
    I recently picked up my first fix+ as parted of their scented LE collection, and I agree, it was love at first spray! I had no idea what I was missing out on and how something so simple could make such a difference! I've been loving the lash sensational as well.

    chloĆ©⎪ status.chlo

  25. That Clinique palette is just so gorgeous, love all the shades! I've only tried the Maybelline mascara and RT brush. I wasn't as crazy about the mascara as I have been about other Maybelline mascaras, even though I did like it, I think I prefer the Falsies still. I love that brush for putting powder on my t-zone, I find that it works really well when I only need a small amount to control oil on my nose, forehead and chin. I must get another one for highlighter!

    Emma x

  26. I believe there is an exact dupe to the orbe spray....at least many British Beauty bloggers talk about it. Also, I believe Colab lauched one ( I remember Vivianna talking about it when she was in Germany if I'm not mistaken)
    That palete is pure perfection. I'm trying to control myself because I want to get a few shades from Innisfree ( their new eyeshadow collection is fabulous) and Zoeva is going to launch a new palette and I am super excited about it *-* ( I mean...a palette about taupes? who wouldn't like it...)

    I'm currently trying to figure out how I feel about the maybelline concealer. during the summer I love it but, whenever the cold time arrives I tend to use more my 3CE concealer. And I'm trying to decide whether I get another Korean-based concealer or if I just splurge on the new Urban Decay concealer...decisions decisions!
    And the setting brush is so nice! I got one for myself recently and I because of it I want to get more brushes from them ( like their travel kit, which has a really nice powder brush)

    I really should do my September Favourites but...with school and everything is quite hard to keep up with what I really love and with what I don't...ugh..
    Take care, have a nice day!


  27. the shades in that clinique palette are so perfect and the pigmentation! i would totlaly be able to use that everyday.

    A Beautiful Zen


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