Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Benefit, Girl meets pearl, coralist, dandelion, blush, ooh la lift, cha cha tint,
Benefit Advent Calendar - Final Week

The last 6 days of my Benefit Advent Calendar was the icing on the cake for me....

Dandelion Blush, Girl Meets Pearl, Coralista, Ooh La Lift, Cha Cha Tint and a gold star necklace.

The Benefit Advent Calendar has been such an amazing treat to open everyday.  Every product is one I will try and Benefit are such high quality I just know none will disapoint.  The little jewellery items that were included were a nice touch but I used them as Christmas tree decoration instead of actually wearing them.  I'll definitely be looking out for another one of these next year!

As I mentioned in my first post the cost was $68 USD and I ordered direct from the Benefit US Website as in Australia they were retailing at $99AUD.

Click here to see all my previous posts about the Advent Calendar... Part I, Part II and Part III

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and spend it creating amazing memories with family and friends. 

Merry Christmas

Kayte xx

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Day 13 to 17 of my Benefit Advent Calendar and it just keeps getting better and better...

Hoola Bronzer, Bad Gal Lash Mascara, Posietint, Sugarbomb Lipgloss, Sunbeam and a Charm Bracelet...

Click here to see all about the advent calendar and behind the first 6 doors and here for Part II

Only 6 more days to open which of course means it's only 5 sleeps till Christmas Eve and 6 sleeps till the Big Day!  I'm heading home to Newcastle to spend Christmas and New Years with my amazing family and I can't wait. 

What have you got planned for Christmas?

Kayte xx

Saturday, December 14, 2013

I was pleasantly surprised to find my Bellabox had arrived nice and early this month!  I thought they might have gone for a holiday season/Christmas special but there is no mention of anything like that.

Here's what was inside this month's box...

Bellabox December 2013

Bonus Tote Bag

9 Items in total with one being a bonus tote bag.  The rest is mostly all sample size with one full-size makeup product.

Benefit Porefessional Primer
I'm a huge fan of Benefit so it's nice to see them feature in Bellabox.  I've used this silicone based primer before and will happily keep this as a good travel size primer.

Romy Shampoo & Conditioner
I've never heard of this brand but these smell devine.  Can't wait to try them!

Avene Relief Concentrate 
This says it is for chronic redness.  I have two things to say about this;  I'm completely over seeing Avene samples and seriously Bellabox how many of your subscribers would actually have a problem with chronic redness - surely less than 5%.

Simple Kind to Eyes Makeup Remover
I've never had much luck with this brand but I'll give this a go.  I normally use an oil based makeup remover so it easily breaks down mascara and eyeliner without too much pulling but this one is water-based so I'll be interested to see how it performs.  Again this is a good size for travel.

Mary Kay Natural Cheek Tint - Pink Pearl
The colour of this blush is just stunning.  It's a rosy pink with a gold sheen to it.  Can't wait to try it out and I reckon this would also make a good eyeshadow.

Eslor Sample Pack - 4 Sachets
This is a fantastic pack that holds a Comforting Mask, Soothing Cream, Cleanser & a Replenishing Scrub.  Another brand I haven't heard of but the prices indicate it's a high end brand.  This is such an awesome way to be able to try out a few different things from one brand.

Bonus Mor Essentials Hand Cream - Neroli Concentrate
I will keep this handy in my bag for the next time I remember to use hand cream.

Bonus Tote Ba
This is slightly bigger than an A4 piece of paper and whilst I'm sure I'll put it to good use I audibly laughed at the RRP of $19.95 that Bellabox put on it.  Nobody and I mean n.o.b.o.d.y in their right mind would pay $20 for this tiny piece of material.

All in all I think the box is great, theres quite a few things there that I look forward to trying out and it definitely holds more value to me than the $15 I paid for it which is always my measure for these kinds of subscription services.

What do you think of this month's Bellabox?

Kayte xx

Friday, December 13, 2013

Day 7 to 12 of my Benefit Advent Calendar brought even more delicious goodies...

Ultra Plush Lip Gloss in Life on the A-list, High Beam, That Gal, Pore-fessional, Total Moisture Face Cream, Badgal Waterproof Black Eyeliner.

Click here to see all about the advent calendar and behind the first 6 doors.

Only 12 more days to open which means my favourite day of the year is fast approaching!

Kayte xx

Monday, December 9, 2013

Another big month of Empties for me and I even managed to use up a makeup product!  I have about 10 foundations on the go so this is no easy feat. 

Here's a breakdown on what I used up with my thoughts on each...

You, Me & Everybody Shady Lady SPF30+ Daily Face Milk
I loved this sunblock as it was 30+ but still really nice and light.  It sunk into my skin brilliantly and didn't leave me with that sticky feeling.  I used this up quite quickly as I was using it all over my body as well as my face.

Cocoa Butter Moisturiser Fragrance Free
I do love the original Cocoa Butter scent but I find it can be a bit too overpowering to wear during the day and just makes me want to eat chocolate haha.  I picked this travel size up when I was visiting my parents a few weeks back.  A thick hydrating cream which feels incredible on the skin.

Lush Big Sea Salt Shampoo
My God this stuff is amazing.  When I first tried this I found the texture to be so off-putting but the results are definitely worth it.  This leaves my hair so lovely and clean without stripping it but the best part is the VOLUME!  If you have fine hair, try it and thank me later!

Sanctuary Spa Ultimate Facial Cleansing Oil
Love this cleansing oil and will be going back for more!

Batiste Dry Shampoo in Blush
Surprise surprise... Not! This is my Holy Grail dry shampoo.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Liquid Foundation
This is a fantastic full coverage foundation that manages to not go cakey on my skin.  Am sad to have finished this and I'm still debating whether or not to pick up a new one or try something different.  I do love this product and highly recommend you try it out if you're after full coverage.

Radox Muscle Soothe
A lovely basic bath soak.  Enough said.

NOW Hyaluronic Acid
I picked this up from iherb when everyone was going crazy for Hydraluron.  I figured it would be the same but less than half the price.  I have no idea if it's the same or night but I used it under my moisturiser at night and noticed a subtle difference in the hydration on my skin.  I still think I'll probably fall under the hype and try the Hydraluron and see if there is actually a difference.  I'll keep you posted.

Thanks for reading

Kayte xx

Friday, December 6, 2013

On the first 6 days of Christmas, my Benefit Advent Calendar brought to me.....

Coralista Mini Face Powder, Stay don't Stray Eye Primer, It's Potent Eye Cream, Dandelion Ultra Plush Lipgloss, Benetint and a Bow Hairclip.

I purchased this amazing advent calendar from the Benefit Website for US$68 early in November and have been super excited to open each door up.  Each week up until Christmas I'll be showing you the Benefit minis behind every door.

Stay Tuned

Kayte xx

Monday, December 2, 2013

Another month, another round of Beauty boxes.... yes it is the 2nd December and yes this is my November Her Fashion Box and yes it did only arrive today.  They had some problems and I'm not going to go on about it as some times things like this happen but I wish they had continued to send these boxes out in the first week of the month just like they did with the very first box.

Anyhow let's get on with it because this month's box had a whopping 11 items in it and I'm excited to show it to you....

Model Co, Fashion Accesories, Hair Donut, Orly Nail Polishes
Her Fashion Box November 2013
 My favourite colour is Pink so I was very happy to delve into this box and check out all the lovely shades of pink!  Included were 5 Beauty products and 6 Fashion Accesories.

Let's break it down

Her Fashion Box Beauty Products

 At first glance I was annoyed to see yet another Modelco product (these keep appearing in all the beauty boxes and I'm getting over it) and ANOTHER two nailpolishes.  However the Modelco product is a Black Long Wear Gel Eyeliner which I'm actually really keen to try out.  I'm hoping it's awesome.  Next up was a Soothing Body Balm from Urban Rituelle with a Coconut & Honey scent - YUM!!  And two Orly Nailpolishes in Gumdrop and Peaceful Opposition.  I've mentioned in posts before that my nails are always shellaced so I never use nailpolish and am getting tired of seeing them in all the Her Fashion Boxes - especially when they're two at a time but I'm sure I'll find someone to give them too and at least they're nice colours.  And Orly chucked in a bonus pedicure separator.  The value of the Beauty products alone in this months box is $70

Her Fashion Box November Accessories

 Next up was the Fashion Accessories and there was a great assortment of different things.  The Hair Donut caught my attention first, I'm not sure if my hair is long enough to use this but I'll definitely give it a try.  A bundle of gold and hot pink bangles caught my eye next, followed by a baby pink and gold cuff bracelet, a soft floral headscarf and a soft pink lace inspired necklace.  Even though there's quite a bit of gold here and I never normally wear gold I actually quite like these accessories.  The only one I'm not sure about is the necklace but I'll see if I can find an outfit to wear it with and see how it looks.

There was also a bow ring which is just gorgeous but since this isn't featured in the book anywhere I think it may be the bonus for filling out the monthly survey

Her Fashion Box - Gold & White Bow Ring (nails are shellaced)

 There was also a bonus Hallmark card which isn't featured here in the photos.  It's from their latest range called The Signature Collection and the one I received is a greeting card with a mini chalkboard on the front which can be removed and reused well after the card has served it's purpose.

The value of the accessories (not including the ring which wasn't priced) totalled just under $75 which brings the total value of the box to over $140.

Overall I'm really impressed with this month's box - it was jam packed full of different things and I felt there was a good mix between beauty and fashion.

What do you think of the November Her Fashion Box?

Kayte xx

I love picking out my favourites to show you each month.  It motivates me to change up the products I use and experiment with different things but also it gives me a chance to introduce you to things that I loooove but maybe haven't had a chance to do a full review on.

Let's get on with it...

MAC 6 Beauties Palette - Play it Cool
I have green eyes so purple shadows really make my eyes pop.  This pallette is just divine and it's been the perfect spring 'look'.  I got this in a blog sale so I don't think it's sold on counter anymore - probably a limited edition.

KORA Hydrating Mask
I've wanted to try KORA products for awhile and when I saw you could sign up to CLEO magazine and get this mask and a refreshing spray for free it was all the motivation I needed.  To be honest I don't even read Cleo magazine but the subscription was cheaper than buying the products.  Am I crazy for doing that?

La Roche-Posay Lipikar Cleansing Body Cream-Gel*
This body wash is divine.  It's lovely and creamy and lathers up without getting foamy but best of all it is mega-hydrating.  Absolutely loving this product.

Bondi Sands Wash Off Instant Tan*
Let's be honest here... I'm pasty white.  If I want to wear a skirt or shorts I think it's in the publics best interest that I slap a little tan on so people aren't blinded by the bright light.  Ok ok it's not that bad.  Seriously though this product is fantastic at giving an instant tan.  Spray on, rub in, let dry for a couple of minutes and you're good to go.  Also it's rain-safe... I was wearing this and it started raining and I freaked out thinking I was gonna get brown dripping down my legs but it stayed on perfectly.  Even in the shower you really have to scrub at it to get it off.  Highly recommend this product.

Taylor Swift Wonderstuck Enchanted Perfume
You may have seen in my last empties post I finished up the original Wonderstruck and loved it.  I wanted to try something a litte bit different but didn't stray too far when I picked up the Enchanted version.  This perfume lasts a surprisingly long time and I love the sweet scent.

Loreal Nutri-Lift Gold Anti-Aging Serum Foundation
I think after all these years I may have found my holy grail foundation.  The first time I put this on I just gave a massive sigh of releif.  Ok so it's first world problems but I get so frustrated with trying to find a good coverage foundation that doesn't look like you've got heaps of makeup on.  This foundation is medium to full coverage and has a dewy finish.  It looks amazing on my skin and lasts all day with absolutely no powder or setting spray! I've got heaps to say so I'll save it for my full review or we'll be here all day.

Napoleon Perdis Auto-Pilot Primer
Been a huge fan of this primer for many a year now.  Feels lovely and refreshing on the skin and helps makeup last longer.  I honestly never put makeup on without a primer underneath anymore.

DMK Solar Damage Gel*
I did manage to get a bit too much sun a couple of weekends back when we went out on the river in our new boat.  This gel is perfect for sunburn as it has a refreshing cooling feel to it and is loaded with hyaluronic acid to help soothe and get moisture back into your skin.

MAC Eye Kohl in Minted
I've been using this Emerald Green eyeliner in my waterline and bottom lash line with a nude smoky eye and it looks divine.  It's not too much colour that I can't wear it to work but it's enough to be eye-catching.  I highly recommend these MAC Eye Kohls - I have black as well and I find the formulation one of the best I've tried.

NYX Colour Balm in Merci
These lip balms are awesome - they give a good hit of colour at the same time as being smooth and hydrating on the lips.  It smells like berries and has a great cool pink tone.

If you've got all the way to the end CONGRATS - I waffled on there a bit but sometimes I just get really excited about products :)  Hope you've enjoyed this post, please let me know if you'd like to see full reviews on anything.

Kayte xx

Items marked with * were provided to me for my consideration.  My views however are honest and completely my own.  See my disclaimer policy for more details.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

October Empties

I'm extremely late with this post as October has well and truly ended and we're nearing the end of another month.  I thought I'd share with you the products I used up in October anyway as I managed to finish off a few different products...

Hapuna Shampoo & Conditioner
I really loved this volumizing set - you can read my full review here 

Polished London Dry Shampoo
Another one I've reviewed before so won't bore you with a repeat.  Full review found here.

Cedel Blow Dry Faster
This is a great heat protectant spray that really does speed up the blow-drying time.  Will definitely pick this up again.

Lux Body Wash
I stocked up on a few of these a while ago as I adore the scent and I thought they were limited edition.  Looks like they're here to stay.  For about $5 this body wash really is so lovely and smells divine.

Akin Invigorating Body Scrub
A great body scrub that has really fine 'scrubby bits' haha.  Has an interesting scent and I really enjoyed using it as a body exfoliator.

Taylor Swift Wonderstuck Perfume
I really liked this sweet as lollies fragrance.  I find it lasted quite well on the skin.

Akin Brightening & Whitening Eye Day Gel
I prefer a cream over a gel when it comes to eyecream so this wasn't my favourite product.  It was nice and refreshing to use in the mornings but it's very light and not hydrating enough for my dry skin.

Akin Rosehip Oil
A great rosehip oil - great as a night serum under moisturiser or on it's own.

Carmex Lip Balm
Standard lip balm but is great for really dry chapped lips.  I usually apply a thicker balm like this at night before I go to sleep.  It's so nice to wake up with soft hydrated lips.

Kayte xx

Sunday, November 24, 2013

My Bellabox arrived this month, a little later than usual but I had been informed about the delay so I wasn't worried.  The theme this month was Refreshing Beauty and I received 6 products in my box...

Bellabox Pout Pencil in Coral Me Maybe
Looks like Bellabox have bought some mass branded products to put their brand on which I don't have an issue with.  I do have an issue with faulty products though and the whole lipstick falls out as soon as you open it.  I've checked the Bellabox facebook page and everyone's having the same problem.  Bellabox are offering to replace them but to be honest I don't think this product is going to compare with anything I'm currently using so I won't bother.  This is also in no way Coral and definitely Red!

Simple Kind to Eyes Eye Makeup Corrector Pen
I love this and can't wait to use it.  I imagine it would come in very handy when I'm practising liquid eyeliner!

Indio SOS Gel
I've tried an exfoliator from this brand before and loved it so I'm glad to see another product to try out.  This sounds like it would be great on some sun-kissed skin this summer!

Wilde Organics E'lustrious Shea
This is a cute little tin of Shea & Coconut Oil pressed into a moisturizing cream.  This is definitely the kind of product I love to try out.

PureTan PureBronze Light-Medium Lotion
Even though I'm starting to get over-run with self tanners and Summer hasn't even started yet I do like the sound of this.  It promises a natural colour that's tinted and develops in an hour.  Perfect for those mornings when we decide to go out on the boat and I've forgotten to tan!

Caron Bump Eraser Medi Paste - Bonus Sample
I actually have the full size of this as ingrowns are something I suffer from.  A nice little sample to be included, will keep it for when I'm traveling next.

Even though I wasn't impressed with the makeup product included in this box I love everything else and for the $15 I paid I still think it's great value.

For more info or to sign up head to www.bellabox.com.au

Kayte xx

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Polished London Dry Shampoo - Cornwall Coconut

I'm a huge fan of Dry Shampoo so when I was asked to review the new Dry Shampoo from Polished London I was more than happy to try it out.

Polished London Dry Shampoo in Cornwall Coconut* is your typical spray in dry shampoo designed to soak up excess oil in the roots to leave your hair feeling clean without having to re-wash your hair.  Perfect for the day after you've washed your hair or prolonging professional blow drys, you simply hold the can approximately 30cms from your head and spray through sections of your roots.  You can brush it through or just rough it up with your hands like I do.  Just as the name states this dry shampoo has a coconut scent which is one of my all-time favourites.

Overall I was impressed with this dry shampoo, it soaks up oil in my roots perfectly and has a lovely scent.   I did find it slightly lighter than my usual brand Batiste and therefore needed to use a little bit more than I normally would but in saying that it didn't leave any powdery residue in my hair and is a product I will continue to use.

The Polished London Dry Shampoo comes in 4 different types/scents and at only $4.95 is definitely a bargain.  These can be purchased at Priceline and selected pharmacies.

Are you a fan of dry shampoo?

Kayte xx

*This product was provided for my consideration but as always these are my honest thoughts and opinions and not influenced in anyway.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Better late than never right!  I picked up a few new things in October and a few of them became favourites.  Here's my Top Ten Beauty Products I loved in October...

NYX Blush in Summer Peach
These blushes are just as fantastic as everyone says they are.  They're so cheap so I wasn't expecting too much but they're awesomely pigmented and you only need a small amount swept across the cheeks.  Lovely summery colour too.

NYX Blush in Taupe
I have always used Benefit Hoola for contouring but with my fair skin I have to be very careful to not apply too much as it's very pigmented.  This matte contour colour is not as dark and is more neutral toned so I can go a bit heavier with it and I think it would be very hard to apply too much.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation
I found this hiding in the back of my foundation drawer and started using it again.  I can't remember why I stopped using this as it gives a really awesome coverage without looking cakey.  My favourite way to apply is with my fingers as it helps the product warm up and sink into my skin.  If I use a brush or my beauty blender it just doesn't have the same finish.  I've nearly finished this and I can't decide wether to pick up another bottle or try something new.

Janesce Softening Refresher Spray
This came in a beauty box once upon a time and as the weather has warmed up I've been using this as a refresher during the day.  It has a lovely soft fragrance and feels lovely and hydrating on the skin.

MUA Power Pout in Broken Hearted
I'm a huge fan of the Revlon Balm Stains and this product is very similar.  The only difference is it has a slightly more dewy/shiny finish and doesn't quite last as long on the lips. Still a great product and I've been loving this colour.

NYX Butter Gloss in Creme Brulee
It's been a while since I wore lipgloss but these glosses are amazing.  Creme Bruless smell's delicious, just like you'd imagine and it's so soft and creamy on the lips.  It has some colour to it but not overpowering and is in no way sticky at all.  Will definitely be picking up some more of these now that NYX has landed in Target in Australia.

MUA Matte Pallette
I'm loving these Matte shades from MUA and with a primer underneath I have no problem with them lasting all day.  The MUA palettes are so cheap and while they could've added in some different colours I'm really enjoying using this.

MUA Undress Your Skin Highlighter
I much prefer powder highlighters over liquid/cream and applied over my blush this gives a perfect highlighting shimmer to my cheekboxes.  It's lovely and cool-toned too with no hints of gold so it works really well with my fair skin.

Furless Brushes x2 - Stippling & Contour
I picked up a set of Furless brushes a couple of months ago which I'm still set to review but these 2 brushes are my absolute favourite.  I use the stippling brush soley for my blusher everyday and the contour brush - yup you guessed it - to contour.  They're the perfect size and they pick up and apply product very easily and smoothly.  Definitely check Furless out if you're in the market for some new brushes.

And that wraps up my Favourites for October!

Kayte xx

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Some of you may have noticed that I've been absent from my blog over the last few weeks.  Unfortunately it's hard to write posts about beauty when life throws you an ugly curveball and three weeks ago we found out my Dad had a brain tumour.  
Within a matter of days we had flown home to Newcastle to be together as a family as the surgeons operated to remove the tumour.  We spent a lot of time just sitting and waiting anxiously and spending time with Dad when he was recovering in the hospital ward.  I never thought I'd ever get to know a hospital so well.  

The prognosis for my Dad isn't great and we don't know how long we have with him but we have him here today and that alone is worth celebrating.  Today he is strong, fit, healthy and most of all happy.  He has some minor speech difficulties but other than that he still remains my funny, courageous Dad telling us all that everything is 'good, really really good' and making sure that we're all okay.  He'll start radiation and chemo soon and we all remain positive that the side effects will be minor.

My Dad a week after surgery

It's taken me awhile to write this post because I know this is an ugly subject to write about on a beauty blog but this is me and over the next few months my posting may be sporadic on the blog as I'll be flying back home whenever I can.  My family has and always will be the most important thing to me and I remain grateful for the time I have had and do still have with my Dad.

Life is short, Break the Rules,
Forgive quickly, Kiss SLOWLY.
Love truly. Laugh uncontrollably
And never regret ANYTHING
That makes you smile
-Mark Twain

Thankyou to those who have sent messages of love and support, even when I haven't replied please know that I appreciate every single one of you.

Kayte xx

Friday, October 25, 2013

My Her Fashion Box arrived today and I've really struggled with whether to blog about it or not.  I've been subscribed to Her Fashion Box since it started and I've really enjoyed receiving these boxes.  Unfortunately last month's box didn't hold much value for me but I didn't mind too much as that's bound to happen and that had been the first time.  When I received this month's box I was really disappointed to see what had been offered. 

To give you a little background Her Fashion Box is a subscription service that costs $39.95 a month and promises to deliver "2-3 on-trend fashion accessories tailored to your style profile, as well as the additional value of carefully selected beauty products or deluxe size samples from high-end, boutique and cult brands from around the world".

I'll let you decide:

A $4 lipstick, a ring that doesn't fit me (and isn't adjustable) alongside more fashion accessories that look cheap and join my collection of weird necklaces I'll never wear.  Another 2 nailpolishes even though last month's box contained 2 nail polishes also.  I don't use nailpolish so these are completely wasted on me and repeating a product isn't what I would call mixing it up.  The tea and tea strainer is a good concept I guess but I won't be trying it myself as I loathe herbal tea.  The one thing I will use in this box is the Collagen Crystal Eye Patches but as this is only worth $4 I could've bought a whole 6 pack of these and still had $15 left over.

I wouldn't normally be so vocal over a subscription box as I'm aware that everyone has different taste and isn't going to like every thing they get but I honestly feel really let down by Her Fashion Box and I truly think they didn't deliver on what they promise.  That's just my honest opinion.

I'd love to hear what you think?  Am I being too harsh?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Ardell Magic Lash Growth Enhancer

I was recently given the opportunity to try the Ardell Magic Lash Growth Enhancer*.  To say I was skeptical would be an understatement as I just don't see how applying a serum to my lashes would make them grow any longer or fuller. 
Magic Lash Growth Enhancer Pen

This is what Ardell had to say about this product:

This concentrated serum is a new breakthrough formula which fortifies and rejuvenates lifeless lashes with Opti-Grow Complex™.  Multi-proteins immediately work to repair weak, thinning lashes and stimulate new growth so that they appear healthier and fuller while preventing future loss. Conditioners are also added to nourish lashes to protect against future damage. The pen-style delivery system allows for precise application on the lash line where it is needed most; at the root. When used daily, results can be seen in as little as 3-5 weeks.

I applied this product on clean dry lashes every night for 4 weeks.  I also applied this on my eyebrows as I have quite a few gaps in my eyebrows and if it works on lashes I couldn't see why it wouldn't work on my eyebrows.  

I was definitely surprised when at about the 3 week mark I realised that the gaps in my eyebrows were starting to fill in and now after 4 weeks of use the gaps are completely gone.  My eyelashes had a more subtle result and I found it was more to the outer edges of my eyes where I noticed the lashes were slightly longer and fuller than they had previously been.

The serum itself didn't seem to have any scent and I experienced no irritations to my eyes whatsoever.  

Overall I am really impressed with this product but mainly for the results shown in my eyebrows rather than my lashes. 

This product retails for $21.99 and if you have sparse eyebrows or eyelashes I would recommend trying this out.

Kayte xx

*This product was provided to me for my consideration but as always my thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced in anyway.

Monday, October 21, 2013

One of my favourite things to do is "window shop" online.  This basically consists of me filling up a "basket" with all the things I want to buy, seeing how much it costs and then clicking out of the whole shop.  I've done this on numerous occasions with Cherry Culture so when I saw they were having a 40% off sale I decided to actually the buy the things I'd had my eyes on.

From L:R - Mauve, Taupe, Summer Peach

I had heard great things about the NYX Blush's so I bought 3 - Mauve, Taupe and Summer Peach. Taupe is supposed to be a great contour colour and the other 2 I thought would go well for Summer.

My eyes are quite small so half strip eyelashes are more suited to me.  These Ardell Accent Lashes are the best I've tried so I picked up 3 packets.  I find I can get quite a few uses out of just one pair so these should last me awhile.

NYX Round Lipsticks, Butter Gloss & Color Balm

I picked up two NYX Round Lipsticks in Spellbound & Louisiana, 2 butter glosses in Creme Brulee and Apple Strudel and a NYX Color Lip Balm in Merci.  The NYX Colour Lip Balm is the only one I've tried before and I loved it so I picked up another one in a different colour.  I'm excited to try the Butter Glosses and Round Lipsticks as I've heard good things. 

Jordana Mascara & Cherry Culture Bubble Gum Lip Balm

The Cherry Culture Lip Balm in Bubblegum came free and the Jordana Best Lash Extreme Volumizing Mascara I picked up on a whim as I have never tried Jordana products.

All 13 products here cost me $32 all up with the discount applied but another $16 was added for shipping so all up I paid around $48 for this parcel of goodies which to me is great value.  I do think that the shipping price was very high but this must be where they makeup some of the cost of being able to sell the makeup so cheap.  If they had free shipping I would've bought a lot more :)

Please do let me know if you'd like to see a review on any one of these particular products.

Have you purchased from Cherry Culture before or tried any of these products with success?

Kayte xx

Friday, October 18, 2013

Skin Wear Tan & Go Self Tanning Mousse (Medium Bronze)

I was recently asked to review a self-tanning mouse and with Summer not too far off I couldn't think of a better time to start testing out some fake tans.  My theory is if I try them out in Spring it's no problem to cover up till it fades away or washes off.  If I test them out in Summer and have a fail, I'll hate covering up in the hot weather. 

Skin Wear Salon Solutions is a brand I hadn't heard of before but I was interested to try it out as they are Australian made and owned and are first and foremost product suppliers to tanning salons.  Because my skin is of the 'pasty' variety I'm a fan of spray tans however I only get them done a few times a year for special occasions.

I trialled the Skin Wear Tan & Go Professional Self-Tanning Mouse in Medium-Bronze and a tanning mitt was supplied also.  I much prefer to use a mousse and tanning mitt over sprays or creams because I just find them so much easier to apply and get an even result.

I took care to exfoliate and moisturise my legs the day before applying this and on the day of application i made sure my legs had no moisturiser or product on them.  I pumped out some mousse onto the supplied tanning mitt and started applying.  The first thing I noticed is that this tanning product doesn't smell like tanning product, it smells quite sweet with a hint of vanilla.

The colour of the mousse is a bronzed brown.  There is no hint of orange in this tan whatsoever which I was very impressed with.  I'm not a fan of the orange-hued tans as I find they don't look as natural.  The colour the tan applied and dried is pretty much exactly the colour you're left with when you wash it off in 6-8 hours (I left mine on overnight).

I've never had any problem blending and buffing mousse tan onto my legs with a tanning mitt in the past but I found this quite difficult to work with.  It seemed to be drying quite quickly so I worked as quick as I could to get it all rubbed in and even.  Unfortunately for the bonier areas like my knees and ankles it was very hard to blend in and the next day I was left with a small area of unevenness on my ankles and feet.

And because I'm feeling very brave and I know you'll be nice and not judge me on my pastiness here are some photos :)  The angle of the photos make it hard to see the uneveness around the feet and in one photo it looks like I didn't even apply tan there at all.

Overall I found this tan to be a bit hit and miss.  I loved the colour and the scent but the fact that it was so hard to blend makes me think twice about using this product again.  For someone who possibly already has some colour to their skin or is pro at applying tan this product may work better for them.

Before and after picture of the Skin Wear Tan & Go Professional Self Tanning Mousse in Medium Bronze

Before and after picture of the Skin Wear Tan & Go Professional Self Tanning Mousse in Medium Bronze

Before and after picture of the Skin Wear Tan & Go Professional Self Tanning Mousse in Medium Bronze

Do you fake tan?  What's your favourite brand? I'd love to hear any tips or trick if you'd like to share in the comment section below.

Kayte xx

*This product was provided to me for my consideration but as always my thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced in anyway.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Last week, after 18 months I took a trip back to New Zealand to visit family and friends and show my partner around the country I grew up in.  We only had 7 days and a lot of people to see and things to do.  This will be a pic heavy post as I show you the highlights of the trip with a little haul at the end :)  Even though we were only there for a short amount of time I did manage to fit in some shopping of course.

We stayed most of the time with my best friend Ruthie who I've been besties with for over 15 years.  We have one of those friendships where no matter how long we've been apart for we pick up from the moment we left off so it was really special to be able to stay with her and her Husband.  The first night we arrived we all stayed up talking till the wee hours of the morning.

View of Auckland from Mt Eden - Skytower and Rangitoto Island (Volcano) in the distance
On the Monday we went North to visit my 2 friends who have both had babies in the last year.  This little guy below is only 3 weeks old and absolutely stole my heart.  I held him like this for over an hour and he slept so soundly.

One of the best tourist spots to visit in the North Island of NZ is Rotorua.  The lake is actually the crater of a volcano and the whole area is known for it's geothermal activity and features geysers and hot mud pools.  While we were here we went Jet Boating, Luging, Visited a Thermal Park and soaked in the mud pools.

Lake Rotorua featuring some Geothermal activity

Luging with the Lake in the background
On our last night we all got dressed up and went out for dinner and drinks in Auckland City.  We had an amazing dinner at Miss Claudy's at the Viaduct and it was the perfect way to end our amazing trip.
Me and my Bestie
Of course no holiday post would be complete without a little update on what I bought.  New Zealand isn't the best place to go shopping as Australia is generally cheaper and has more range but I did pick up a few things Duty Free and also found a Daiso store on my travels (everything is $3.50NZD instead of $2.80AUD lol)

At the Daiso store I finally found the brush cleanser I missed out on getting when I was in Brisbane.  I stocked up with 3 bottles and am hoping it's as good as everyone says it is.  I also picked up a brow pencil to try as I had great success with my last Daiso eyebrow pencil.

From Duty Free I picked up the MAC Mineralize Moisture Foundation in NC15 and the Mineralize Blush in Dainty.  This is my first MAC foundation so I'm really intrigued to see how it performs.

I found some Wet n Wild eyeshadows in a random store in Auckland and have heard good things about the formula so I picked them up.  They were really cheap - maybe like $3 each.

And my favourite Vanilla candle E V E R I found in duty free for around $35AUD instead of $50 so I couldn't resist even though it was a pain the ass to lug on two flights.  Well worth it in my opinion.

I also picked up some new clothes over there including a stunning dress from Cue but I'm no fashion blogger so there won't be any photos - you'll just have to take my word for it.

Hope you enjoyed hearing about my trip to NZ.  I may be a little biased but New Zealand really is a magical place to have a holiday.  It really struck me this time just how green and lush it really is and there is so much to do there.  If you need more motivation; your money magically turns into even more when you're over there so everything feels/is way cheaper haha :D

What's your favourite holiday destination?

Kayte xx

Monday, October 14, 2013

I arrived back from my holiday to New Zealand late on Saturday night and spent Sunday suffering from the typical post holiday blues.  I'll write a specific post about the holiday later in the week and show you some of my favourite pics including some of the shopping I did over there but in short  I had a fantastic time visiting family and friends and showing my man around my homeland. 

I went back to work today and was surprised and delighted when my Bellabox was delivered.  It seemed like a nice little welcome back present sent to cheer me up :)

It seems that Bellabox have stopped sending their products in boxes and just like last month have sent this months products wrapped in bubblewrap and encased with the above cardboard slip.  It seems to keep it all together fine and I wasn't using the boxes they were sending so the change doesn't bother me at all.

Bellabox October 2013

The card enclosed indicated that this is Bellabox's 2 year Birthday edition and they teamed up with They All Hate Us to bring this box.

The October Bellabox has 7 items 6 of which are sample/trial size and one full size product.  Straight away I could tell the one full size product was worth more than what I'd paid for the box ($15) so I was happy.

Alfaparf Semi Di Lino Reconstruction Shampoo and Reconstruction Mask
I have never heard of this brand but these trial sized bottles are the perfect size to try out a new product.  These both smell really good and I'm looking forward to trying them out.

Vaseline Healthy Radiance Anti-Aging Lotion
This body moisturiser contains AHA and pro-retinol to help fight the signs of aging so I'm intrigued to try this out and see what effect it has (if any).  Another good trial size.

Beyonce Heat Perfume 2ml
This smells a bit strong for me but I like to keep these in my handbag for emergencies.  

Nivea Light Moisturising Day Cream for Normal & Combination Skin
This doesn't really appeal to me much but I may give it a try.  It does have SPF15 in it so might be a good one to try out on a hot summers day when I can get away with using a lighter day cream.

Loreal Paris Shine Caresse in 501 Bonnie
I was really excited to see this product as I've been wanting to try them out.  This is worth $23.95 and apparently combines a gloss and lipstick in one.

Loreal Nutri Lift Gold Serum Foundation - Sachet
Another product I was excited to see, I've seen this foundation around but keep forgetting to swatch it when I'm in store.  I think this sample in the colour Sand will be too dark for me but I'll try it out to see what the colour and consistency are like.

All in all I'm pretty happy with this box.  There's nothing Wow in it but I should be able to use all of the products and for $15 it's not hard to see the value.

If you want to know more head to www.bellabox.com.au

What do you think of this month's Bellabox?

Kayte xx