Monday, 30 April 2012

Adorned Nails: KOH Heavenly


It's Queen's Day here and I really should be wearing an orange polish today.

But no, I went for nude nails (and a rust orange T-shirt).


This is KOH Heavenly from the latest KOH Elements collection. Heavenly is a nude pink/lilac crème with a really thick formula. It was possible to get it opaque in one thick coat. I have two on here.

This one was totally screaming for a traditional French manicure, so I did just that with the white of KOH Cloudy.

This polish was kindly provided by KOH Cosmetics.


Previous Elements polish: KOH Cloudy
Next Elements polish: KOH Mediterranean Sea

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Sebamed: Liquid Face + Body Wash For Sensitive Skin Review


To me, the Sebamed Liquid Face & Body Wash For Sensitive Skin is almost like my regular tube of toothpaste. It's a cheap, unglamorous, regular everyday product that I had been using twice a day, day in day out, for many years. You could say I took it for granted and never once thought of writing a post about it.

It wasn't until I wrote my review of the MuLondon Organic Foaming Face Wash that I realised how significant this face wash has been in my life. I should, at the very least, write a little article in honour of my faithful companion of eleven years.



The Sebamed Liquid Face & Body Wash was recommended to me by my dermatologist when I was at probably one of the lowest points in my life. My face was breaking out like crazy with pimples, cystic acne and everything in between. It was painful, it (or rather, I) was ugly and I was terribly, terribly depressed. I know this comes across dramatic but if you're one who's been blessed with good or even fairly good skin all your life, you would probably find it hard to comprehend. I understand.

I stuck with this face wash for so many years simply because (a) I didn't want to rock the boat, and (b) I didn't know what new cleanser I could switch to. It was just easier to stick to the tried and tested.

Here's what Sebamed says about this face and body wash (excerpts):

........is dermatologist developed, ultra-mild, and compatible with the most sensitive of skins. It gently deep-cleans pores without causing dryness or irritation as regular soap can.

• 100% soap and alkali free
• Gentle deep cleansing of the pores
• Natural moisturizers, Allantoin and Pentavitin, leave skin soft and smooth
• Panthenol regenerates the skin


This face and body wash does contain SLS.

Ingredients

Water (Aqua), Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate, Sodium Chloride, Laureth-2, Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Glycol Distearate, Fragrance (Parfum), Saccharide Isomerate, Allantoin, Niacinamide (Vitamin B3), Pyridoxine HCI (Vitamin B6), Glycine, Magnesium Aspartate, Alanine, Lysine, Leucine, Biotin (Vitamin H), Glycerin, Sodium Lauroyl Glutamate, Sodium Citrate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sorbitan Laurate, PEG-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Yellow 10 (CI 47005), Blue 1 (CI 42090)


Here are some salient points about this face and body wash:

• Economical
As it's concentrated, a small dollop no larger than a typical five-cent coin would be enough for the face, neck and hands. Over here, a 500ml bottle costs around €8 and if used mainly as a face wash, it will last a long, long time......a year, perhaps.

• Scent
The green liquid has a clean, fresh, not-quite-soapy smell which I think most people would find agreeable.



• Cleansing
It cleans the skin well, effectively removing dirt and makeup (but not waterproof makeup). The skin is left soft without the tightness (except for when I'm in an extremely dry environment but that's nothing like the tightness that I used to get with facial soaps). The skin just feels clean. Pure and simple.

• Mild
It is soap- and alkali-free. With a pH of 5.5, it mirrors the pH of normal, healthy skin. Sebamed: This is essential in maintaining your skin‘s natural hydrolipid barrier against environmental stress. I think it already says a lot if it worked well for my problem, acne and sometimes sensitive skin. Oh, and it doesn't sting the eyes.

• Dual-purpose
As the name suggests, you can use it as both a face wash and as a body wash. I find that extremely handy when travelling. Taking one bottle (albeit small) is always better than lugging two.

• Makeup brushes
Actually, it has a third use. I use it to clean my makeup brushes too. Hey, if it's gentle enough for my face, it should be good enough for all my makeup brushes, ELLIS FAAS applicators and sponge-tip applicators.

L-R: 500ml, 300ml, 50ml bottles

This face and body wash is available in various sizes. Take your pick: 1000ml, 500ml, 300ml, 200ml, etc (depending on where you live) and in the past, Sebamed used to include a free mini bottle with a purchase of a large one. These minis are sooooooo useful. In fact, I always transfered the contents from the larger bottles into the minis. That way, I would have just that almost inconspicuous mini bottle for active use in the bathroom, with the bulky, large bottle/s put away in storage. Keep in mind that even a small 50ml bottle would last a couple of months (as a face wash).

Handy translucent bar on the side for quick volume check (this is an empty bottle)


I still have this face wash at home but I now use it mainly to wash my makeup brushes. It was a big step to take but I have moved on to natural facial cleansers and have been using the MuLondon Organic Foaming Face Wash since end of last year. I didn't mind continuing with the Sebamed Liquid Face & Body Wash but the thing is, it's been eleven years. My skin has changed and stabilised somewhat, with an occasional pimple here and there. It was simply time to move on and try new products.

It will, no doubt, be a new adventure in my journey of beauty awakening, which is what this website is all about, really.


Sebamed website

Sebamed products can easily be found in many drugstores. If it's not available where you are, you could try Amazon US or Amazon UK.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Adorned Nail: KOH Cloudy



KOH Elements is the third special collection to be released by the brand this year. This first polish that I'm wearing here has been christened KOH Cloudy. To be honest, it doesn't look terribly cloudy to me. If anything, it's pristine white and quietly sparkly.


With its glass flecks, it pretty much belongs in the same family as several polishes from the Sexy collection - KOH Pleasure (yellow), KOH Sensual (mint green) and KOH Tease (coral). This jelly applied effortlessly and I have three coats on here. I did very thin coats on the little finger, which explains for the visible nail line.

As I'm not big on white nail polishes, I desperately felt the need to embellish my nails with some stamping. I used this right-angled leafy design on the B21 plate from Chez Delaney and a cobalt blue KONAD stamping polish.


The result: something like a Delft Blue painting of a vine.


Cloudy was kindly provided by KOH Cosmetics.


Here is the whole KOH Elements collection in a row:


L-R:
KOH Cloudy
KOH Leaf
KOH Fire
KOH Earth
KOH Mediterranean Sea
KOH Heavenly

Next Elements polish: KOH Heavenly

Monday, 23 April 2012

ELLIS FAAS: Spring Set 2012 - A Closer Look



As mentioned the other day, ELLIS FAAS has come up with the Spring Set for 2012. The set consists of:



Milky Lips L207 - nudish, a cross between dusty rose and coral brown
Light E304 - metallic lilac
Creamy Eyes E106 - matte light brown/lilac, taupe


L-R: Milky Lips L207, Light E304, Creamy Eyes E106


Lips
For more details/photos, please refer to my feature on the Milky Lips L207.


Eyes
The two eye products make a great combo, in my opinion. The taupe of E106 is subdued, neutral but certainly not uninteresting. Light E304 is a gorgeous eyecatcher but if you think it's too much, then apply just a thin layer or only on a small section of the eyelid.

I like combining this pair with the very handy matte dark brown of Creamy Eyes E104. Looking through my archive of ELLIS FAAS Eye Looks, I see that I have done this trio combination twice before.

I decided to give this whole combination another go and the following is what I have come up with.


ELLIS FAAS: Eye Look With Light XVII


The items used for this look were:


Light E304
Creamy Eyes E106
Creamy Eyes E104
Mascara E401 (black)
GOSH Velvet Touch Eye Liner in Black Ink (not shown)
Note: All the featured ELLIS FAAS pens except for the E104 were kindly provided by the brand.


Light E304, Creamy Eyes E106, Creamy Eyes E104 - all heavily swatched


This look is less smokey than the two other eye looks with this same colour scheme.

Upper lid
1. Applied with finger the taupe of E106 on (almost) the whole lid, using another (clean) finger to fade out the edges.
2. Lightly dabbed on the metallic Light E304 right across the moving lid.
3. With an eyeliner brush, lined the upper lash line with the brown of E104.
4. Tightlined with the black eyeliner pencil.


Lower lid
5. Applied directly with the brush applicator the taupe on the outer two-thirds of the lower lash line.

6. Curled lashes and applied two coats of mascara.


The Spring Set 2012 retails for €65 / £55 / USD85. That's a savings of €18 / £16 / USD28 compared to the total price of the individual pens.

Alternatively, if you're interested in just the Milky Lips and perhaps other ELLIS FAAS products/colours, the brand recently announced another temporary offer in its latest newsletter - a 10% discount on your whole order (which includes any Milky Lips). Coupon code: SNOWL200


My other two ELLIS FAAS eye looks with this colour combination:
Eye Look VIII
Eye Look XI

ELLIS FAAS website

Friday, 20 April 2012

Adorned Nails: TheFaceShop Face It Hologram BK901



Actually, the full name is: TheFaceShop Face It Repair Nails Hologram BK901. As if things weren't complicated enough, there exists another TheFaceShop polish with the same number - TheFaceShop Face It Nails BK901 (it's a black-based polish, by the way). Gee, why so confusing, TheFaceShop?!

Strangely, this holo nail polish falls under the Repair Nails range. I believe the Repair Nails range consists of three or four nail care products and three holo polishes: a grey, a pink and an orange. I really, really wanted to get the orange one but unfortunately, it was already sold out in all the TheFaceShop shops (oh, that sounded funny!) that I walked into in Kuala Lumpur. I wasn't keen on the light pink one as I already had something similar at home - Make Up Store Britta.

So, the grey one it was!


There's not much to say about this grey holo, really. I did three coats on top of GOSH Fix Base Coat. This base coat helped somewhat to prevent bald spots which often occurs when applying holo polishes.


Though not very expensive, the price of this holo polish was about 2.5 times the price of a regular Face It polish. I paid the equivalent of around €6 for this 11ml bottle.

With holo polishes, it's always better to let the photos speak for themselves. All were of course taken in sunshine.





My first TheFaceShop Face It polish: the duochrome BL602
TheFaceShop website

Thursday, 19 April 2012

ELLIS FAAS: Milky Lips L207



This is a little feature on the ELLIS FAAS Milky Lips L207, which is one of the three pens packaged in the brand's latest Spring Set 2012.

I've loved the ELLIS FAAS lip products since Day One (come to think of it, it's been a good two-and-a-half years). I have a certain weakness for the Creamy Lips and the Milky Lips range (for those new to this brand: there is a third lip range called Glazed Lips). The velvety smooth texture always makes 'painting' colour on the lips an enjoyable and.....almost therapeutic experience. No, no, not exaggerating. Just stating the truth. And what's even better about them is that they are very moisturising.


The Milky Lips L207 is described by ELLIS FAAS as a juicy nude pink. Since receiving the Spring Set from the good folks at ELLIS FAAS last week, I've been pondering on the shade. Yes, it's a nudish shade. I've decided that it's a curious cross between a dusty rose and a light coral brown.



It's quite close to my natural lip colour, L207 is just a tinge more coral brown. I suppose I could call it my-lips-but-better. Hmmm, if Milky Lips L201 were a social butterfly, then L207 would be a wallflower, I think.


The ELLIS FAAS Milky Lips L207 retails for €25 / £22 / USD35 each.

The brand is now offering the Spring Set 2012 which contains Milky Lips L207, Light E304 and Creamy Eyes E106. This set retails for €65 / £55 / USD85.

A feature on the Spring Set 2012 is in the works.


Update 21 April
Latest ELLIS FAAS newsletter:
Get 10% off your whole order which includes a Milky Lips! Coupon code: SNOWL200


Further reading:
My full review of the Milky Lips
Get acquainted with Brand: ELLIS FAAS

ELLIS FAAS website

Monday, 16 April 2012

Rituals: No. 07 White Patchouli + Cedar Wood Eau de Parfum



I'll admit that I didn't immediately fall for this perfume. I had sampled it a couple of times at the Rituals stores but I had always found the scent too spicy for my liking.

I ended up owning this Rituals No. 07 White Patchouli + Cedar Wood Eau de Parfum anyway when I bought that Perfume Collection for Women boxset which contained three mini (10ml) bottles of Rituals perfumes. The other two in the box were No. 04 Violet + White Lily and No. 09 Vanilla Drops + Sweet Orange.


Well, I've been using No. 07 now and then in the past few months and I gotta say, it has grown on me.

No. 07 opens sharp and strong - spicy and sandalwoody (both of which I don't quite fancy) - but somewhere in there, there is a sweet floral accent that I had previously missed. I guess I was too distracted by the spiciness to have noticed this elegant element and, consequently, had written No. 07 off prematurely.

After a while, No. 07 settles into something less sandalwoody, still floral sweet but very peppery. It's like falling onto a cushy bed of flowers but passing through a cloud of pepper on the way.

I like this perfume best after many hours on my skin. Much of the pepperiness is gone and what is left is a sweet, warm, musky scent with just a ghost of the spiciness left. Cosy!

That's how I would describe No. 07.

The creator of this perfume is Geneva-based perfumer, Catherine Selig. She describes No. 07 this way:

My inspiration is to blend the soul of the woman with the soul of the woods. Imagine the innocent purity of white patchouli and the mysterious warm notes of cedar.


The Rituals Eau de Parfums come in 50ml bottles and they retail for €39.90 each. The Perfume Collection for Women boxset (with three mini 10ml bottles) retails for €24.90. You can view the clean-cut regular-size bottle (also with the rustic wooden cap) in my feature on my first Rituals perfume: the very lovely No. 01 Ginger Essence + White Tea EDP.

Rituals says that its perfumes are made based on natural ingredients and using only organic alcohol. Since my first post on its perfumes, Rituals has updated the range. There are now four perfumes in each of the ranges for men and for women.


To view the other Rituals perfumes:
Rituals websites
- Dutch
- English (UK)

Friday, 13 April 2012

Adorned Nails: KOH Tease



Ah, finally, KOH Tease, the sixth and final polish from the KOH Sexy collection!

It's a candy-sweet, pretty coral jelly and with the glass flecks, it has the same finish as KOH Pleasure and KOH Sensual. Again, you're looking at three coats.



This polish was kindly provided by KOH Cosmetics.


Previous Sexy polish: KOH Sensual

All six polishes from the Sexy collection at a glance: KOH Nail Polish Gallery
My favourites: KOH Seduce and KOH Daring

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Catrice: Eye Look With feMALE Eye Aquarelle Duo Chalks



I mentioned the other day that, of the three Eye Aquarelle Duo Chalks from Catrice's feMALE collection, the set called Boys Are Back was my favourite. It's a neutral pair of shades - a mauve taupe and a black grey. It's the former that I especially like.


This is an eye look that I wore last week and literally the final time I used the Make Up For Ever Aqua Smoky Lash Mascara before I binned it.

I used:


Etos Eyeshadow Underbase (eyeshadow primer)
Catrice Eye Aquarelle Duo Chalks - Boys Are Back
Teeez Bold Eyeliner Pencil - Sexy 12 (black)
Make Up For Ever Aqua Smoky Lash Mascara - Waterproof Extra Black


It's a smokey look, with the black grey concentrated close to the lash line and the mauve taupe above it. The lower lash line is left bare except for a thin coat of mascara.



Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Adorned Nails: KOH Sensual



KOH Sensual is the fifth polish to be featured from the colourfully cheerful KOH Sexy collection. Just like the deep yellow KOH Pleasure, Sensual is a jelly with glass flecks. It's a pastel, a mint green that looks silvery, sparkly and lighter due to the dense flecks.



I love how Sensual applied and I have three coats on here. I should mention that, of the six bottles of Sexy, this was the only one with a narrow brush. It could be a random case. Please refer to my previous KOH post which shows a comparison of the brush widths.


This polish was kindly provided by KOH Cosmetics.


Previous Sexy polish: KOH Pleasure
Next and final Sexy polish: KOH Tease