Thursday, 27 February 2014

REVIEW: MAC MSF in Soft and Gentle

Yes, here it is. Probably one of the most talked about make up items in the blogosphere is the MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle. It's supposed to be the best MSF out there and I've seen other bloggers down it 'til the last swipe. What are my thoughts on this beauty?

Packaging: Obviously the packaging is gorgeous and practical. You can see very clearly what product you're handling because of the clear lid and it's sturdy enough to travel with.

Quality: I've always loved MAC baked products, and this highlighter does not disappoint. It's very pigmented, shows up nicely on the cheekbones and has the perfect amount of shimmer. The only think I kind of dislike, is the fact that the undertone is quite bronze for me for the wintertime. However, it will be amazing in summer! But as I'm still playing around with it, I'm sure I'll find a way to make it more winterproof!

Price: €28 for 10grams or 0.35oz of product. Quite expensive, but you get years' worth of applications out of this baby. I find it worth the 'investment'! 

Conclusion: I love this highlighter a lot! It's probably the prettiest highlighting product I own. However it hasn't quite obtained status of Holy Grail product yet.

Have you tried Soft and Gentle? How did you like it?

xx Anine

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

PREVIEW: MAC Technique haul

Almost a month ago, I went to a MAC Technique class in Antwerp, where the MUA's taught me some tips and tricks for the perfect nude makeup look. To be honest, I didn't really end up liking the makeup application, since I usually go for a more full coverage look (simply 'cause I really need it!).  However I did get to know some new products, that in the meantime, I've added to my MAC wishlist!

I picked up some goodies I've been wanting to pick up for ages, but also got surprised during the Technique class by a stunning product that I fell in love with. More on that later. These are the products I chose:

All these products are very well known, classic blogger favorites, I might even say. Individual reviews of all these products will be coming up!

Xx Anine

Sunday, 23 February 2014

REVIEW: Philosophy Kiss me Tonight moisturizing lip treatment

As you saw in my last empties post, I've ran out my Labello lip balm and thus was looking for a new one to try out. It was kind of like a black hole for me, 'cause I had been using Labello ever since I was a young teenager. What else was out there on the lip balm market? 

Mr. Boyfriend gave me the Philosophy Kiss Me Tonight lip treatment for Valentine's day, and I'm happy to say my black hole has been filled. For now.

What does the product claim to do:
- Condition and soothe dry, cracked lips
- Restore healthy, rosy appearance of the lips
- Naturally derived emollients nurture, soften and moisturize

Sounds like I could use some of that! I've been having cracked lips for months now.

Here you can read the ingredient list:

As you tell, the lip balm contains a lot of butters and oils such as seed oil, shea butter, sunflower seed oil, olive fruit oil, castor oil, etc.

Use: I take a small amount on my ring finger (a little goes quite a long way) and dab it gently on my lips. It does take a while to sink in, so I like to use it especially at night.

Packaging: I'm not the biggest fan of the jar, but it seems so hard to find a different, more hygienic packaging for lip balms. I do like the white lid in between the product and the screw lid.

Price: $21 at the official Philosophy website or €15.20 at Ici Paris XL for 90 grams or 0.30oz.

Conclusion: It feels very nice on the lips and I immediately noticed softer, hydrated lips. It does but slightly reminds me of Vaseline in texture. I hope this does more than just simple, cheap Vaseline. I also feel like I've been going through it quite fast, so I'm trying to use it sparingly now. All in all this is a nice product!

Do you have any lip balm recommendations? 

Xoxo Anine

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Empties #4

It's empties time! Not much explaining to do here, I show you all the products I finished the past months and tell you my final thought on them! Sit back and relax because I collected quite a bunch of products.

Just to make one thing clear; I do regularly wash my hair, y'all. Every other day, even! For some reason I just really go through these Batiste dry shampoos like nobodies business. I pretty much only use them for my small baby hairs that tend to get greasy pretty quickly. 

I don't really notice a big difference between the different kinds of Batiste dry shampoos, only that some smell different. But they work perfectly for me, it can't get simpler than this.

These are my makeup empties and I've finished quite a few products (I'm so proud of myself). I ran out my Revlon colorstay foundation for oily/combination skin, it was nice but the high coverage was too much for me. I love other foundations more so won't be coming back to this one very soon. 

Also my Bourjois brow pencil in Blonde really was getting pathetically small and annoying to use. It lasted me years and I've already repurchased. It's perfect for a very subtle brow look.

The Rimmel Stay Matte Powder was also totally finished. I probably won't repurchase, I got my eye on the MAC Mineralized skinfinish natural!

Another Rimmel product, this time the Rimmel Scandaleyes mascara. I won't repurchase it, since the wand was so ridiculously big! I could hardly touch my lashes without blinding myself! Check out the full review here

The other two mascara samples I finished are the Benefit They're Real mascara and the Chanel Le Volume de Chanel mascara. Liked them both quite a lot, read the full review here and here.

The last makeup empty I have for you is the Maybelline Magic Lumi concealer in 01 light. I love this so much, but have so many concealers to finish first, so I'm going to have to hold myself back. It's just so darn cheap!

Skincare! And lots of it! Firstly, I finished the Vichy Laboratoire Normaderm Nuit, a night cream for acne-prone skin. Liked it for a while, don't like it anymore. It felt nice but it didn't really seem to do much for my skin.

The same story for the Clinique anti-blemish solution cream and the Biotherm Biosource foaming cleaning gel. They were both okay, but didn't seem to make a difference. 

The La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat anti-blemish moisturizer however, I really like and have repurchased. It really helps to control the oils in my T-zone. 

Some more skincare items: the Garnier exfoliating gel really didn't to anything for my skin, I barely noticed a difference if I used it or not. I'm still on the hunt for my Holy Grail exfoliator! 

I've been using the Nivea eye makeup remover for a very long time and it does its job perfectly. It removes all my makeup, doesn't sting my sensitive eyes and is cheap too!

Another Labello lip balm bites the dust. I will not be repurchasing though, since I've been noticing they haven't really been moisturizing my lips, they just make them crave for more lip balm. In the market for a new one!

And here we have the Lancôme cleansing milk. I like it and purchased the full size a while back, but don't know if I like it enough to keep repurchasing it though.

Last but not least, we have these two -very dirty because of foundation stains- Urban Decay Setting Sprays, the All Nighter one and the De-Slick one. I liked them both and noticed a clear difference. The All Nighter setting spray really helped my makeup stay on longer and left my foundation with a beautiful natural finish. 

The De-Slick setting spray does help with oil, but I feel like it doesn't make my makeup stay on longer. So if I'd repurchase, I think I'd go for the All Nighter setting spray!

Few, that were A LOT of empties! Have you tried any of these products? Do you have any recommendations for me?

Xoxo Anine

Monday, 17 February 2014

REVIEW: Konjac face sponge

Am I overreacting when I say this thing might be a Holy Grail skincare product for me? Maybe even better than the Clarisonic? I have your attention now, don't I? Let's get into this review.

I don't actually know if it is better than the Clarisonic or not, but the Konjac face sponge nevertheless works amazingly for me. I ordered it months ago, loved it and then lost it - yes, LOST it - somewhere. Since I reordered it I realized this was the first time I éver had found a product irreplaceable

But what is this weird sponge? Konjac skin cleansing sponges are:
- Eco friendly
- Vegan
- Cruelty free
- pH balanced
- 100% biodegradable
- 100% coloring free
- 100% natural 

These wonderful sponges are immensely popular in Korea and Japan, where the Konjac plant grows. This plant is a popular ingredient in health remedies. It is supposed to balance the acidity of your skin's impurities and oils. 

Konjac also produces body sponges and even sponges for babies! For cleansing the face they have different kinds of sponges:

- The original Konjac sponge
- Konjac sponge with Bamboo Charcoal for oily and acne-prone skin
- Konjac sponge with French red clay for dry and sensitive skin
- Konjac sponge with French green clay for normal to oily skin
- Konjac sponge with French pink clay for tired and devitalized skin

As you can tell I own the one with French green clay for normal to oily skin. I might try the Bamboo Charcoal one next time!

Use: The company claims it can perfectly cleanse of your makeup without additional cleansing products, but I still use it twice a day, WITH a cleanser. I run the sponge under lukewarm water, press most of the water out and then apply my cleansing product on the flat side. Then I make circular motions all over my face and neck with it. 

Then I rinse it again and make sure all the soap in the sponge is gone. As Konjac suggests, I then squeeze all the water out and let it dry in another room than the bathroom so it can dry properly. 

Konjac advises to repurchase your sponge after three months. I kept the first sponge for six months and it still looked perfect. After purchasing a new one, I did notice that it was way thicker than my last, apparently worn sponge.

Price: £7.99 on the Konjac webshop + shipping costs, I paid £1.5 to ship it from the UK to Belgium. A steal!

Conclusion: This is really a breakthrough in my skincare routine. I have been noticing clearer skin, smaller pores and less impurities. This sponge is a keeper!

Have you ever tried the Konjac sponges?

Xoxo Anine

Saturday, 15 February 2014

REVIEW: Rituals Sakura spring foaming shower oil

February usually is the kind of month where the positive effect of the New Year totally has burnt out and we're kind of falling in this big black hole of winter. The cold, the nasty weather, and a usually pretty empty bank account has us craving for summer

While we wait for that to happen, I find some relaxing moments can really help me feel on top of the world again. What better way to totally relax than with this Rituals 'Zensational' Sakura Spring foaming shower oil? It's the second shower oil Rituals came out with, and I was able to try it out, since they come for free if you spend over a certain amount (yes, guilty). The full size will be available in March

I had never tried a shower oil before and thus was kind of worried, since I hate the feeling of sticky, oily products, such as body lotions on my skin. But this product contains exactly the right amount of oil and moisture for me. 

As you rub the oil in your skin, it lathers up slightly and changes into a very thin, moisturizing foam that will not leave any oily residue on my skin. And as with all Rituals products, it feels and smells simply amazing!

The product contains Organic Rice Milk and Cherry Blossom and leaves your skin smelling very fresh. Perfect for spring!

Conclusion: I am definitely repurchasing the full size of this baby. This thing is pure luxury in a bottle, but so easy and fast to use. 

Have you ever used shower oils?

Xoxo Anine

Thursday, 13 February 2014

REVIEW: Lush Mask of Magnaminty face mask

I can't believe I still haven't done a review about this product. These photos are actually taken months ago and I'm pretty much running out of it, but still wanted to share my thoughts on the Lush Mask of Magnaminty face mask.

Ready for a rave review? Here we go.

It is described as a cleanser, but I find it too harsh to use it on a daily basis. Instead I use it once to twice a week (usually in the bath tub) to deep cleanse the face. First I apply it on clean, slightly damp skin and let it dry and sink in the skin for ten to fifteen minutes. The clay then dries, and afterwards I'll massage it further with wet fingers, so the mask will get wet again. I then rinse with lukewarm water.

Ingredients and claims:
Natural clays, to get rid of all the dirt in your pores.
Honey and marigold flower to heal the skin.
Azuki beans to get rid of dead skin cells.

"This peppermint mask will fight unpure, acne-prone skin."

Exactly what I need!

I love the pepperminty feel this product gives my skin. If you use a lot of clay masks, you know what I mean when I talk about this great sensation of a mud/clay mask that dries out your skin and gets rid of all the gunk and dirt. Even after using this for months and months, this product still feels amazing every time I apply it.

€8.60 for 125 grams

Repurchasing. It's that easy. 

Xx Anine

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

HEALTH: lifestyle changes

Hi all,

January usually is the global month of healthy living, as leftover of the New Year's resolutions. For the first time I've actually made some lifestyle changes myself over the previous months, that I really wanted to share with you.

I've been very inspired to try out easy tips and tricks to maintain a happier and healthier lifestyle.

1. Yoga

It sort of started out as a joke; "Let's try yoga!" but my friend and I actually enjoy it a lot more than we anticipated. Am I any good at it? No. But am I relaxed and more in tune with my body afterwards? Definitely!

2. Smoothies and green juices

I gave myself a blender for my birthday back in October, and have tried out loads of recipes to make smoothies and fruit juices. I'm also very inspired to try green juices, however those have yet to turn out delicious... But I'm trying to be persistent!

3. More water and green tea

I'm already quite the water and tea drinker, but I'm really forcing myself to drink tea every morning and evening and bring a giant glass of water to bed with me, which I drink right before I go to sleep. I've noticed it helping me clear up my skin and being less hungry for greasy food.

4. Lighter makeup, better skincare routine.

For the first time in years, I've been noticing improvement in my skin. I'm sure it's a combination of the yoga, drinking more water and eating healthier, but I feel like my extra imput into my skincare routine has been contributing as well. I've been very good with my skincare routine, implementing more and more healthy little rituals in the morning and the evening, even enjoying the entire step-by-step routine.

Because my skin has been better, I've been able to wear less heavy make up, which will be better for my skin in the end as well. Win win!

Xoxo Anine

Friday, 7 February 2014

FASHION: Disneyland magic!

Hi all,

As some of you might know, I'm leaving for Disneyland Paris tomorrow! I'm way too exciting about this, since I've only been once (when I was about four years old - don't remember a thing).

Since I'm desperate to make this weekend the most magical of many weekends, I have been going through my closet for some time now. There are so many cute Disneyland looks to find online, but unfortunately, these are mainly aimed for the tropical paradise Disneyland California, and not the winterland paradise Disneyland Paris.

So here you have my cold-resistant, comfy, and especially disney-themed outfit inspiration!

I went for a cute, but still edgy look. Can't wait!

Xoxo Anine