Saturday, July 14, 2018

Current Makeup/Skin Care Menu #5

It's winter in Australia, so a traditionally very lazy time of year when it comes to makeup. That, or I've reached the stage where I'm favouring a more pared down routine, reaching for the same products each time without inclination to mix things up. Sort of like Steve Jobs and his same outfit every day. If it's working for me now and it saves me the time and effort having to decide what to use on a daily basis, then I'm happily sticking to the same old. At least until the weather starts warming up.


Pixi Glow Tonic
Can I flatter myself by saying I was an early adopter of this stuff? Of course, recommended by Caroline Hirons back in the day when it used to come in a rectangular bottle with a pump. Though it's been 5 years since I first started using it, I haven't been completely loyal ever since. But that's more because I'm not that disciplined when it comes to toning and exfoliation in general. However, I started using this regularly a few months ago and I'm converted again. It makes a BIG difference to my skin when incorporated into my daily regime. I cleanse with an oil, wipe this all over with a facial pad, follow with a hydrating toner (see below), then slather on moisturiser mixed with a couple drops of rosehip and avocado oil. The condition of my skin has been smooth, supple, hydrated, relatively blemish-free (still human, so not totally immune to the odd spot), without signs of flakiness or dryness typical of the season. I've since purchased 2 bottles as backup, so you know I'm not messing around.

Ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glycolic Acid, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Sodium Hydroxide, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Leaf Extract, Aesculus Hippocastanum (Horse Chestnut) Seed Extract, Hexylene Glycol, Fructose, Glucose, Sucrose, Urea, Dextrin, Alanine, Glutamic Acid, Aspartic Acid, Hexyl Nicotinate, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin, Disodium EDTA, Biotin, Panthenol, PPG-26-Buteth-26, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance (Parfum), Caramel, Red 4 (CI 14700).

Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Chamomile and Lavender
I wanted a simple, inexpensive but effective hydrating toner to follow Pixi Glow Tonic, and this newish release popped up on my radar. I've always been curious about the Mario Badescu sprays since they're quite affordable ($10 for 118ml, $17 for double that amount) and seem to be decently reviewed. I know this is basically just water with a minuscule amount of other things thrown in that may or may not have any real benefit to my skin, but so far, I'm enjoying it. I haven't had any reaction to it and it's a nice mist of calm hydration following my morning and evening cleanse. The scent isn't as dreamy as I'd hoped with the promise of authentic lavender (I don't really detect any sweetness or earthiness to it, it's more of a harsh/cold herbal scent), but I don't have any major complaints.

Ingredients: Aqua (Water, Eau), Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower Water, Propylene Glycol, Polysorbate 20, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Fucus Vesiculosus Extract, Ethyl Ascorbic Acid, Thymus Vulgaris (Thyme) Leaf Extract, Silver Citrate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Benzophenone-4, Triethanolamine, Zeolite, Sodium Sulfate, Citric Acid, Sodium Chloride, CI 60730 (Violet 2).


Laura Mercier Foundation Primer - Radiance
The news of Laura Mercier exiting the Australian market reminded me to actually start using the Laura Mercier products I have. I haven't bought a heap from the brand over the years, but the quality and performance of the products I have tried have consistently been excellent, so it's a real bummer they've decided to pull the plug. I think I read recently that Meghan Markle just used this primer on days when she wanted to boost and brighten her complexion, but not wear a full face of foundation, so naturally I started to mix a bit of this into my foundation every day. Not only does it add very natural but effective luminosity, but it's a bit of a thicker consistency and accordingly, bulks up my lightweight, more liquid foundation (Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum) so that it adheres to my skin better and has greater longevity. The only thing is that patches of gold shimmer in the primer can be apparent if you don't thoroughly blend the primer/foundation concoction into your skin, so a bit of extra care needs to be taken for a smooth, streak-free result.


LA Girl Cosmetics Glide Gel Eyeliner Pencil in Very Black
I needed a replacement for my beloved but long discontinued Savvy by DB Luxury Liner in Shimmering Slate, and this was inexpensive but well reviewed. I don't love it quite as much as the Savvy by DB, but it's definitely up there. It's nicely black, long lasting, smooth but not too melty, and as its name suggests, glides on and doesn't tug at the eyelids whatsoever. It's also much easier to remove at the end of the day than the Savvy by DB, which is a big plus.

Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes in Lots o' Latte
I feel like I've been sleeping on this for years, though it's been sitting in my makeup drawers all this time. It's literally the only eyeshadow I've been using every single day. There's something so liberating about slapping this on without thought and being done. It takes <1 minute and there's no primer involved, no brushes (which will later have to be washed), no careful, time-consuming blending (just use your fingers to fade out the edges a bit). The satin taupey/browny/mushroomy shade is deep enough to add definition, but not so much that you have panda eyes in the daytime. There's also not that much shimmer or glitter that a lot of eyeshadow crayons have, which seems more fitting with winter when a more subdued matte look might be preferable.

Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes in Lots o' Latte

Real Techniques Blush Brush
Every now and then, you learn something truly revolutionary through a YouTube makeup video or tutorial. That occurred to me recently when I saw Mariah Leonard's Glass Skin Foundation Routine. Basically, she advocates using a big fluffy brush like the Real Techniques Blush Brush, then using a very light, delicate touch with your highlighter powder, and applying the product in large circular motions around the cheekbones and browbone, then dusting your brush across your forehead, down the bridge of your nose, and chin. The main points are to ditch your usual highlighting brush which is much smaller and produces a more precise, concentrated placement, and instead, go big (both in the brush, and in the placement on your face), and go soft (use way less product than you think you need, and be conservative in your dips into the highlighting powder). The result is a much more natural look where you're just glowing all around but the product isn't so obviously sitting on your face.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Amrezy Highlighter
Speaking of this new technique, I've been using the Real Techniques Blush Brush with the massively hyped Amrezy highlighter by ABH. I bought this almost immediately when it launched on international online stockists (for reference, I used Cult Beauty). I learned my lesson from the last time ABH launched highlighter singles (still lamenting missing out on the So Hollywood Illuminator), so there was no way in hell I'd repeat the same mistake. At first, I wasn't sure if the hype was justified as while I liked it, there wasn't anything in particular that blew me away. Until I started adopting the big brush/light dip approach. Then ... I understood. This produces a beautiful highlighted effect that doesn't look crusty or scaly on my skin and isn't too dark for my skin tone. The texture is very finely milled but it's powerfully illuminating without being glittery or chunky. It's also highly pigmented, so a small amount goes a long way. The pan will last a lifetime.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Amrezy Highlighter


l-r: theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer, Fenty Hu$tla Baby, Becca Moonstone, ABH Amrezy, Charlotte Tilbury Highlight (in Beauty Glow)

For comparison purposes, theBalm, Becca and Charlotte Tilbury are the most similar to each other, with a paler, more pink/beige-toned white gold. The Fenty Beauty Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter in Hu$tla Baby is more similar to the Amrezy highlighter, but leans more peachy gold as opposed to yellow gold. However, both share a more pronounced, reflective shine.

3 comments:

  1. I've been the same with makeup now- I'm always going back to the same things over and over again (and it's such a simplified makeup routine). I've also been using Pixi's Glow Tonic for a while now, on every alternate day. I'm actually not quite sure if it is actually doing anything to my skin- it is very difficult to tell. My skin may be a little smoother, but then it could be from the retinoid I am using from The Ordinary (amazing stuff!). I've been using the Avene Thermal Spray for years in between my serum/oil/moisturiser applications, and haven't tried anything else- I might look out for the Mario Badescu spray sometime!

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  2. Pixi Glow tonic is a life changer! I am finishing my bottle and the only reason I did not repurchase it right away was because I wanted to try out Ordinary's version (which was hard to get since they always have half of their stuff out of stock). I also want to get my hands on their pads! My best-friend got them (because we started to finally have Pixi at sephora here!!) and apparently they are also amazing!


    And I cannot wait to try out that Anastasia highlighter! They are going to also release the brand at sephora here (we got a tone of released recently!) Although since I got a rather affordable highlighter palette from revolution (their collaboration with Sophdoesnails) that has been my go to product!

    Wishing you all the best
    Randomlydi

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  3. I've heard so many great things about the PIXI Glow Tonic but I have highly sensitive skin so I'm so scared to try it! But after reading your review, I guess it's time to get my hands on it.

    I was going back and fourth between the ABH Amrezy Highlighter for the longest time... I have so many! Def kinda regret not getting this one, it's a beaut!!!

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