Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil

Hourglass-Brow-Arch-1I’ve been searching for the perfect eyebrow pencil for what feels like forever and I think I’ve finally found it. I’ve tried a fair few pencils in my time but nothing comes close to matching the Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil. Honestly, everything I’ve tried up until this point has felt inferior.

First up I have to mention the sleek packing; it has a real luxe appeal and feels weighty which I like. Despite the hefty price tag ($48 AUD) I’m pretty impressed with the amount of product you get. I say ‘pretty impressed’ loosely because I haven’t had the courage to see how much actual product sits in the retractable mechanism (I’ve stuffed a few products this way before so I’m not wiling to take the risk). All I know is that I’ve hardly made a dent in the product and I’ve literally used it every day since I picked it up – so, I’m pretty impressed!

I also love the automatic/retractable pencil because it means I don’t require a sharpener, which in turn means I’m not wasting product. I can’t tell you how many pencils I’ve gone through while trying to sharpen a waxy product in humid conditions. It used to drive me bonkers. Never again (hopefully).

Hourglass-Brow-Arch-3I have the shade Dark Brunette but at the time of purchase I really struggled  between it and Soft Brunette. Three MUA’s later and I picked the darker shade as all three MUA’s said it framed my face better. I have to admit, the shade is a bit darker then I’m used to but it doesn’t look unnatural at all and that’s because there’s no red pigment in the formula. In case you’re curious Soft Brunette was a tad more grey in comparison.

Despite it’s appearance the pencil is super easy to use. I start off by grooming my brows with the included spoolie and brush my eyebrows down to reveal my natural shape. I then apply the product to the fullest part off my brow and continue filling in sparse ares with short, quick strokes. When I’ve achieved the look I’m after I finish by brushing my brows in an upward motion. I find I don’t feel the  need to add extra products because the waxy texture adds volume and provides hold as is.Hourglass-Brow-Arch-6For those who might be interested the Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil is “free of sulfates, phthalates, synthetic dyes, fragrance, gluten and vegan-friendly”.

In my opinion it’s very effective product and is a breeze to use. The wax to powder texture stays on all day so no more worries about my brows running a muck during the course of the day. I honestly love it and would definitely buy it again!

Just out of curiosity, has anyone out there tried the Tom Ford Brow Sculptor? I’ve heard it’s quite comparable (minus the price tag). I’d love to hear from you if you have and what you thought, particularly if you’ve tried the Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil too.

Thanks for reading!

All content © 2014 splishsplasch

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This happened: Shiseido Shimmering Cream Shadow in Sunshower (OR313)

Shiseido-Sunshower-1Last week I shared a couple of new purchases one of them being the  Shiseido’s Shimmering Cream Shadows which I picked up in the shades Leather and Sable. If you remember that post I also mentioned I had to pull myself away from a third shade, called Sunshower (OR313). Well, I couldn’t get it off of my mind so when I just so happened to stumble upon the Shiseido counter while out shopping, there was no way I was going to walk away a second time. Is it wrong to divulge that I actually feel at peace now? Please tell me I’m not alone here? Shiseido-Sunshower-2Sunshower (OR313) is the perfect subdued copper with a hint of toffee and golden rose. It’s off the charts gorgeous and I’m completely enamored with it. On my brown/hazel eyes it’s really flattering (if I do say so myself) but I suspect this shade would look lovely on all eye colours, depending on how you use it. When it comes to eye makeup some of you will know that the no-makeup makeup look is a look near and dear to my heart, however every now and then I like to step outside my comfort zone and branch away from safe neutrals. While Sunshower isn’t bold or garish, it’s definitively a shade that playful but also casual at the same time. Shiseido-Sunshower-3I won’t go into detail about why I love these cream shadows but if you’d like to find out more I have a whole post dedicated to the reasons, which you can find here. Honestly, Shiseido have done an outstanding job with these cream shadows and they are one of my favourite finds of the year. They are definitely deserve a lot more credit in my opinion.

Let me know if you’ve given them a whirl. Id’ love to know what you thought.

All content © 2014 splishsplasch

My favourite cream shadows: Shiseido Shimmering Cream Shadows

Shiseido-1If you read my post last week, you’ll know that I’m all about cream eye shadows at the moment. It’s amazing what these little wonders can do when you’re strapped for time. Some of you have heard me harp on (lucky you) about my love of Shiseido Shimmering Cream Shadows. Well over the weekend I succumbed to their awesomeness and picked up two new shades. I’m completely smitten with them, so much so that I already have another shade waiting in situ.

The two shades i picked up are BR709 Sable and BR306 Leather. Sable is a olive-taupe which reminds me of MAC’s Pattina but in a cream formula. It’s one of those colors that gives brown eyes more depth and makes light eyes look more radiant. I almost didn’t bother with it, as it’s quite muddy looking in the pot, but on the eyes it’s just stunning. It’s a gorgeous alternative to copper and brown tones but is still quite neutral so it compliments a lot of makeup looks. Leather on the other hand, is a warm rusty brown copper. I get a beautiful wash of colour with this shade and it creates a gorgeous bronze smokey eye. I absolutely love it. It makes a great base for other shadows as well.Shiseido-2So why so much love? Well firstly, the formula of these cream shadows is amazing. I’m going to go as far as to say the formula is my favourite of all the cream shadows I’ve ever tried, and I’ve tried a lot in my time so that’s saying something. Not only are they super creamy but they glide on ever so smoothly. I suspect this has something to so with the inclusion of Shiseido’s original hydrating ingredient – Super Hydro-Wrap Vitalizing DE.

Despite my oily eyelids I find that the product doesn’t crease or transfer irrespective of it’s emollience. And since it’s a cream shadow there is no fallout, which makes me very (very) happy. Now in regards to this ‘shimmering’ business don’t expect bucket loads . Shiseido use’s the term very loosely.  In my opinion the finish resembles more of a satin than a shimmer (as the name might suggest). So if the thought of frosty shades freaks you out, don’t let the product name deter you from having a little fun next time you’re near a counter. It’s worth pointing out that there is some variance between the shades (in terms of ‘shimmer’), so if it’s something that interests you make sure you try it in person before committing to a shade. As a side note, of the two shades I picked up, I’d say Sable had a little more shimmer than Leather.

Shiseido-3As with most cream shadows theses are a cinch to use and don’t require a lot of time. Simply dab and blend and you’re good to go. A shadow brush will do the trick as well (if you’re that way inclined). You get a fair amount of play time before the product sets but once it does set, it won’t budge for 16 hours. Of course this means you’ll need a good oil based makeup remover to dissolve the product after a good days wear, but in terms of staying power it’s leading the cream shadow pack.

Each little glass pot contain 6 grams of product and while they are pricey ($44 AUD) you’re getting more product than you’d typically get with an Chanel Illusion D’Ombre (4gm), Bobby Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadow (3.5gm) or Mac Paintpot (5gm) to name a few.

Shiseido-4If you’re anything like me and you’re constantly in a hurry you’re going to love these. Shiseido Shimmering Cream Shadows are perfect if you want a quick and easy wash of colour on your eyes or alternatively, they compliment other eye products beautifully.

What are your thoughts on cream shadows? Got any you’d like to recommend? Please share in the comments below.

All content © 2014 splishsplasch

A moment of weakness: Reflets d’Été (Chanel Summer Beauty 2014)

Chanel-Summer-14-Collection So this happened over the weekend. I know I said I was trying to be thrifty but judging by the pics in this post it’s pretty apparent that I couldn’t step away from the Chanel counter quick enough. I ended up picking up two pieces from the Reflets d’Ete collection and actually showed quite a lot of restraint in the process; my love of shopping is clearly being tested at the moment, especially in regards to all the new beauty releases (gahh). The two products I picked up include an Illusion D’Ombre in New Moon and Blush Creme de Chanel in the shade cheeky.

I actually didn’t anticipate picking up the Blush Creme de Chanel in Cheeky (79). I honestly didn’t think I’d be so enamored as it seemed really ordinary in pictures I’d seen online. However, after swatching it in person, it really stood out. Cheeky is a gorgeous bronze shade with neutral-to-warm undertones. The cream-to-powder formula is super easy to use, and applies effortlessly, whether your a cream blush pro or newbie. If you’re familiar with the shade Destiny #61 (from the Fall 2013 Superstition collection) it’s somewhat comparable but much more of a cooler version.

What I love most about blush Creme de Chanel is that the formula never looks cakey, nor does it settle into pores. The satin-matte finish pairs beautifully with all of my foundations, but I’m particularly loving it with my Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet. As for wear time I get a good 8 hours if I use a primer or powder, but I suspect it would last longer if you have normal to dry skin. I think this shade would also double as a contour if you have a fair to medium skin tone. I’m about an NW20-25 and get away with it. Chanel-Summer-14-New-MoonThe other product I picked up, is an Illusion D’Ombre in the shade New Moon. I was really excited about the shade and on swatch, I wasn’t disappointed. The colour is divine, a beautiful brown with hints of iridescent copper. What surprised me most about New Moon was the amount of glitter/sparkle – Chanel really went to town with the fairy dust. I found that over the course of the day I had quite a bit of residual fallout, something to bare in mind if you don’t like glittery products. Having said that New Moon can be applied sheer or can be built up to an intense shimmer, depending on what floats your boat. Of course with a product such as this,  strategic placement is crucial. With that being said, it’s quite a unique shade and I think if you’re a fan of Illusion D’Ombre’s you’ll love this. Chanel-Summer-14-swatchesSorry about the terrible swatch pic. I’ll try and replace it with a better photo soone. The downside of shooting in winter is that the light is all over the place and once the clouds roll in, there’s Buckley’s chance of getting consistent lighting in my pics – the perils of relying on natural lighting.

Let me know if you picked up anything form the Chanel Summer collection. I had to side step the Inimitable Waterproof Mascara in Violet Touch and the Stylo Yeux in Ambre Dore (#911) for fear of retribution, luckily I didn’t care much for the glosses.

All content © 2014 splishsplasch

May 2014 Beauty Favourites

May-2014-Beauty-Favourites-1 Ah, here we are again. Monthly beauty favourites. If I’m honest I’ve been on a bit of a beauty hiatus over the past month. I’ve been all about the 5 minute face; if its not on in 5, it’s just not on at all.  With such little time for makeup my favourites have included easy to apply, fuss free items. With that being said it’s no surprise that my favourite base of the year – Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet features again, second month running; it’s just so damn good and absolutely foolproof. I don’t even have to go heavy with concealer as t covers imperfections really well. When I pair it with my  Laura Mercier Primer (another favourite) it’s lasts and lasts throughout the day. The Primer is one of those products that came out of left field to be honest. I didn’t think I’d like it as much as I do, but time after time it continues to impress me. While I don’t use it every day, on the days that I do use it, it keeps shine at bay and means that my powder and blush stays on a lot longer too. Speaking of blush I’ve really enjoyed my mini sample of Hot Mama by The Balm. I’ve loved it so much that I’ve hit pan and while I’m not sure whether or not I’ll upsize, I adore the colour and subtle finish nevertheless.May-2014-Beauty-Favourites-3A few posts back i also featured my new Antipodes Skin Brightening Powder – it’s fantastic by the way.  I’ve never been a fan of powders, but this one doesn’t feel cakey or heavy and it’s perfect for setting my base. I tend to use it with my Diorskin Nude BB cream rather than over my Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet. I feel it works best over a more dewy finish rather than a semi-matte, like the Chanel option.

Onto lips and while I love sharing my infatuation with anything bright, this month I’ve toned things down a notch or three. To be honest I’ve been really strapped for time, so my makeup routine has been quite minimal over the past month. Half the time I’ve just worn a balm, but on the days I’ve wanted some colour I’ve opted for my Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Honey. It’s just an easy throw on colour when I haven’t got time to think about coordinating my makeup (it just goes with everything). For the most part I’ve also kept things pretty simple on the eyes too. A quick slap of Rimmel Scandaleyes in Rich Russet over my lids and I’m good to go. Unfortunately the liquid shadow has had a bit of a beating, largely due to my over zealous use, meaning I’m almost all out of product. To make matters worse, I picked this up last year when I was traveling abroad and unfortunately it’s not available in Australia *sob*. If you love an easy to apply, one step eye product, get your hands on this baby. I believe there are a few shades in the collection, Rich Russet just so happens to be my favourite.May-2014-Beauty-Favourites-2Finally, my saving grace and product of the month has been my Kiehl’s Ultimate Strengthening Hand Salve. My hands have been feeling really dry and this stuff has been working overtime in performing miracles. If you need a really good hand cream that nourishes like nothing else, you have to try this one. It’s my favourite hand cream of all time.

And there you have it – my monthly favourites! Admittedly they’re were a whole bunch of other products I could have included but these happened to be the ones I reached for most. Thanks for sticking around to the end; I know these long posts are a bit of a chore to read.

Let me know what your favourite products were over the month of May. Monthly favourites happen to be some of my favourite posts to read so be sure to comment and/or add a link to your post. Happy June everybody!

All content © 2014 splishsplasch

Antipodes Translucent Skin-Brightening Mineral Finishing Powder

Antipodes-Translucent-Brightening-PowderSoft Focus seems to be all the rage these days, and I for one, am up for the party. One of the newest contenders to release a ‘soft focus’ product is Antipodes, who recently launched their lightweight Translucent Skin-Brightening Mineral Finishing Powder, which is aimed at bluring lines and giveing skin an airbrushed finish.

So far I’m really impressed, and that’s big considering I’m not a huge powder advocate. Generally I steer clear of powders, especially the ones thathave that cakey/heavy look about them. The Mineral Finishing Powder is so lightweight making it a non-issue plus it doesn’t settle into any of my fine lines or pores. Also, as I mentioned earlier, the soft focus effect, reflects light in all the right places.

While I didn’t pick up the recommended kabuki brush there is one for purchase. At the moment I’m using my Bare Minerals brush but ideally I’d prefer something a little softer, more densly packed (something like a kaubuki brush, funnily enough). I simply apply the powder in circular motions around my face pretty sparingly and I’m good to go.Antipodes-Translucent-Brightening-Powder-2So I’ve noticed a few things I really like about this powder. Firstly it minimises shine by absorbing oil, making my pores look smaller and my skin more refined. I love the translucent matte finish and even after a few hours of wear, the powder doesn’t look like a greasy mess. Rather it imparts a lovely sheen or radiance if you will. On super close inspection the powder does have a pearlised finish but it’s almost undetectable and doesn’t look garish at all. I normally steer clear of anything with obtrusive sparkle or glitter but this just gives a nice natural sheen to the skin.

I have combination-oily skin and we all know that oily skin and enlarged pores tend to go hand-in hand. While nothing is going to shrink my pores this powder does in fact minimise them and makes them less obvious. I love using it with my L’Oreal Magical blur (in conjunction with my base of choice; normally Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet).

Antipodes-Translucent-Brightening-Powder-4

The powder contains Vinanza Performance Plus, a revolutionary antioxidant extract from sauvignon blanc grape seeds. This antioxidant extract acts as anti aging element. Another key ingredient is the superfruit kiwifruit. It lightens the skin and reduces redness, age spots and freckling. I’m not sure how this works in a power product but it targets my personal concerns so there are no complaints from me.

I’m really intrigued my the new makeup line released by Antipodes particularly the mineral foundations (hello there) and lipsticks (I want all of them). Have any of you tried anything from the new range? Please share in the comments below. I’m itching to get my hands on some more Antipodes.

All content © 2014 splishsplasch

Rimmel Mini Haul

Rimmel-Haul-1One of my favourite drugstore/high street brands is London’s own – Rimmel. The brand offers great quality products, features the latest trend colours and is reasonably priced. I recently picked up a few things from my local Chemist Warehouse. I was actually there with my boyfriend Dylan, who was on a mission to put together an Emergency Kit. To cut a long story short, Dylan burnt his hand the night before and we didn’t have a kit handy. It’s always been on our agenda to organise one, but unfortunately it took a mishap to make it a priority. Anyway… I’m sure you’ve all seen the contents of an at home emergency kit, so let me share the beauty bits and bobs I picked up instead.

Rimmel-Haul-4Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in In Love With Ginger: I love my brights but if there’s one shade that eludes me it’s gotta be orange. While I love the shade on others I’m just not sure how I feel about it on myself. With that being said I was drawn to Rimmel’s In love with Ginger, mostly because it leans a more red but also because it’s an inexpensive option, meaning I was prepared to take a gamble. So far I’m loving the shade and if you’re an orange noob like me give it a whirl, it’s surprisingly lovely.  In terms of pigmentation it’s really strong and applies nicely, although I prefer my lipsticks to be more matte. I usually blot, reapply and blot again to mattify the formula. Speaking of formula it’s relatively moisturising but does cling to my dry patches. The staying power isn’t the best either and I find it bleeds more than any other lipstick I own but that’s not a huge concern for me personally, as I don’t mind reapplying throughout the day and using a liner. The shade is perfect for layering (if you’re after the intensity) or can be applied lightly for a nice subtle stain, so it’s quite versatile in that respect.

Rimmel-Haul-2Rimmel Salon Pro Oh Mr Darcy and Hip Hop Nail polish: I’ve been itching to get my hands on Oh Mr Darcy for what felt like forever. I was all over it when I read Anna’s post in which she said it was comparable to Chanel’s Frenzy. I’m not one to splash out on expensive nail polishes (mostly because my talons suck and therefore aren’t deserving) but also because I think drugstore versions are equally as good. I’ve tried the Salon Pro formula before (see my post on Chic and Cheerful ) so I also picked up Hip Hop, a sizzling coral tinged red. When it comes to formulation and colour range Rimmel doesn’t disappoint. Not only does the colour last for ages but it chips resistant and cheap as chips. I seldom sway from these sorts of shades so I was happy when I picked these up for just $5 each – total bargain!

Rimmel-Haul-3Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil: Unfortunately this pencil is the wrong shade for me. It’s far too warm. It’s such a shame as it’s nice and firm allowing it to deliver precise lines, which I really like. It doesn’t smear, smudge or melt, which is also a bonus if you live in a hot climate like I do. I’m going to try and make it work somehow – not sure how, but I will. I’ll report back.

If you’re a Rimmel lover and reside in Australia I highly recommend hitting up Chemist Warehouse. Spend upwards of $20 on Rimmel branded products and you receive a Rimmel gift set (valued at $41.85). The gift set includes a Scandaleyes Lycra Flex Mascara in Black, a Salon Pro Nail Enamel in Sorbet Grape and a Rimmel Apocalips in Nova, none of which I’ve tried yet. Let me know if you’d like to see a review. Pretty awesome deal so get in quick if you’re after something form Rimmel.

What are some of your Rimmel favourites? I’m keen to try some of the mono eye shadows next or maybe the Scandaleyes Eye Shadow Sticks.

All content © 2014 splishsplasch