Tag Archives: essence

Simple Everyday Makeup | Summer 2017

I’ve been lucky to be able to enjoy a beautiful and pretty hot summer this year. There have been days when the temperatures rised up to 40 degrees Celsius which has been a big challenge for all of us but for our skin, too.

In the summer, I tend to use less than 5 makeup products on my face, mainly because of my shiny T-zone but also, I like it to feel as light as possible.
There are a few new products I’ve incorporated into my daily makeup routine in the  past few weeks and I decided to share my experience with you.

This mini of the Dr. Jart+ Premium Beauty Balm SPF 45 was part of a set I got from Sephora while I was in Rome. There is no shade name on the packaging, I believe the product comes in two shades and this one is great for me now that I’m tanned but would be too dark for the rest of the year. I love that it has SPF 45 and that I can really notice skincare benefits the more I wear this BB cream. At first, the texture looks quite thick but it spreads easily and evens out the skin tone. It has medium coverage and hides redness really well. I’d say it would be best for normal to dry skin, as I need to blot a lot more in the days when I’m wearing it but I really like this product. I don’t need a brush or a sponge to apply it, it’s quick and easy to use and it’s actually lasting me a long time although it’s only 15 ml.

The concealer I’ve been reaching for lately comes from Catrice and it’s their Liquid Camouflage Concealer. It has great coverage, it’s brightening, creamy and budget-friendly.

Another Catrice product I’ve been loving in the past few weeks is their Sun Glow Matt Bronzing Powder in the shade 030 Medium Bronze. The texture is buttery, smooth, velvety soft, the powder is finely-milled, looks beautiful on the skin and it’s everyday-appropriate. Depending on the skin tone, it can be even used as a light contour without looking too harsh. Most of the days, I’d skip other cheek products but sometimes a highlighter and a blusher just add the finishing touches to a certain look. I’m in love with the Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Spotlight in Opal. It’s another mini I got in a set with the matching powder highlight but I think this one looks better on my skin in the summer. Probably many of you think that Mood Exposure from Hourglass would be more appropriate in the autumn but I love this mauve shade so much that I could wear it all the time. This Ambient Lighting Blush gives radiance and a touch of colour to my face, makes me look more healthy and awake and blends really well with the bronzer.

I’ve just started using this Essence Mattifying Compact Powder, so I can’t say much about it at the moment but it feels lightweight and natural-looking.

Clarins Eyebrow Pencil is an old favourite of mine, this is probably my third one, it’s perfect for those days when I don’t want to spend hours doing my brows. If you like more precise pencils, this isn’t the one for you probably but I love it for quickly filling my brows and defining them a bit.

When I first saw the MAC Fruity Juicy Eyeshadow Palette in Fruit A La La*, I fell in love with the packaging. The print is gorgeous, the case is compact but sturdy at the same time. However, I wasn’t sure if I could get good use out of it, considering I’m into simple eye looks. And oh, was I wrong… This palette is so tiny, yet it has the perfect shades for neutral or more fun look. It is also great for creating this sultry sunset eye we see a lot in the summer. You can create so many looks with it and I can’t stop using it now.

I finally purchased the Dior Pump’N’Volume Mascara, it’s been on my wishlist since it first came out because I’m a Dior lover and because the tube is a bit unusual. The mascara is really volumising, it doesn’t irritate my sensitive eyes and doesn’t smudge. I’ll be sharing more once I’ve used it for a bit longer.

Most of the days, I’d just exfoliate my lips with the Dior Addict Sugar Scrub and the rosy tint added to the balmy feeling would be enough for me on the lips. But Tom Ford lip products finally launched in more boutiques around Norway and I’ve been in love with the packaging, the formula and this shade called Indian Rose*. It’s sophisticated, elegant but still fresh and pretty for every day.

There are a few scents that form my summer fragrance wardrobe at the moment but the one I use mostly is Moschino Fresh EDT. As the name would suggest, it’s fresh, joyful, juicy. The floral notes are not so prominent, so it feels more citrusy and fruity, rather than floral. I really like this fragrance for the summer.

This is my current makeup menu and I’d be curious to know more about your summer makeup loves.

*PR Samples

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Budget Beauty Heroes

I realised that sometimes it may seem like I don’t reach for drugstore makeup very often but that’s not true. However, the reasons why it looks like this are mainly two. First one being the fact that there aren’t many drugstore brands on the Norwegian beauty market and second, the prices of drugstore and high-end makeup in the country can be very similar. That’s why I tend to go for the high-end option most of the time but I love browsing through the drugstore aisles whenever I travel. You can find amazing jems like my favourite blush, for example, or a really good eyebrow pencil.

One of the best affordable makeup products has to be the L’Oréal Infallible 24H-Matte Foundation. It’s very difficult for me to find a base that I really like (not only at the drugstore but in general) and I’m happy this product is another budget option because I’ve been using Bourjois 123 CC Cream for years now and nothing else came close to it. They are totally different products when it comes to consistency and finish but they both earned my love. L’Oréal Infallible 24H-Matte Foundation has a great coverage and hides my redness really well, it does last very long on me although I still need to blot during the day which means it doesn’t stay totally matte. Actually, I like that it doesn’t sit too flat and heavy, it’s quite comfortable to wear, it’s easy to apply, I use a makeup sponge but on weekends I tend to mix this foundation with my moisturiser and apply it with fingers.

I’ve mentioned Max Factor Creme Puff Blush in the shade 10 Nude Mauve so many times that I even included it in my 2016 favourites. It’s the perfect blush for me, the whole range is brilliant but this shade in particular doubles up as a bronzer, gives a healthy glow thanks to the beautiful and subtle sheen (there’s no sparkle or glitter) and there is no way to overdo it even if you’re heavy-handed like me.

As you may see, I need a new pot of the Bourjois Healthy Balance Unifying Powder. I’ve been using this powder for over 3 years now and this is probably my 6th one of it, I simply love how finely-milled it is and how it keeps me shine-free for hours but gives my face radiance at the same time. Years ago it was really hard to find a good drugstore powder, there are now much more budget face powders that are pretty good but this one remains the best one for me along with Rimmel Stay Matte.

The beauty product that I almost never change is definitely my eyebrow pencil. As if I stopped looking for brow pencils after I found the Soap & Glory Archery Brow Pencil. It’s really precise and easy to work with, so you can form a defined brow or you can make it look natural and undone which, in my opinion, is very difficult to achieve with brow pencils.

There are a ton of amazing affordable lipsticks out there and it’s really hard for me to pick just one and say it’s the best drugstore choice. But there is one lipstick I wear so often that it somehow isn’t mentioned enough. Essence Longlasting Lipstick in the shade 05 Cool Nude (you can see a swatch in my Love for Nude Lipsticks post) may seem a bit boring in the bullet but once it’s applied on the lips it transforms into the most beautiful muted rosy shade that would suit many skin tones. It doesn’t last that long but it’s really comfortable to wear, I don’t even need a mirror to apply it, it’s not drying and the brand has such a wide range of lipstick shades and finishes that you would grab more than one.

These are some of my budget makeup stars and perhaps, it would be interesting to do a skincare version of this post. What do you think?

Empties #12

20170304_120507postWe’re already in March and this is actually my first post with empty products for 2017. There are some huge favourites of mine that I’ve used up and now I’m really missing them.

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Skincare and Makeup Products

KICKS Clearing Mud Mask – That’s a second tube of this mask after the first one was sent to me to try. It has Salycilic Acid in it, it’s purifying, washes off easily and the price is good, as well;
Kaufmanns Haut-und-Kinder-Creme  – Another tube of one of my favourite multipurpose moisturisers. It’s now a staple for me, it saves my lips and knuckles in the winter;
Superdrug Clearly Youthful Resurfacing Night Serum – Unfortunately, this comes in a really small size and I didn’t pick up another bottle of it from the UK. A fantastic budget serum with Lactic Acid  that makes my skin look brighter and clearer;
Balea Vital Intensive SerumBalea seem to know how to do good budget serums, too. They always have pumps and feel incredibly nourishing and soothing;
Clinique Superdefense Night Recovery Moisturiser – That’s my second jar of this night cream and it’s one of my favourite ones, I’ve spoken a lot about it but here’s the full review in case you want to know more;
REN Flash Defence Anti-Pollution Mist – I believe this is my second bottle of this mist, as well. I love facial mists and I adore this one. I have detailed information about it here, I love using it before makeup, on top of makeup, on days when I don’t wear makeup, it’s refreshing, hydrating and protecting;
Shiseido Ibuki Softening Concentrate – This mini was great for travelling, the purchase was inspired by mum who loves it and uses it as a serum or just as an additional step to add a bit more moisture and care to the skin;
Tromborg Multivitamin Facial Mask – This was just a sample but it was enough for me to know the mask is amazing. It feels light on the skin, it’s a gel and at first you think it doesn’t do much but when you wash it off, you’re left with a lovely glow, the pores look diminished and the complexion in general is fresher and healthier;
Sephora Pomegranate Sleeping Mask – I love these masks, they seem small but I can use them up to 6-7 times. I don’t like them for travelling, though because you can’t store them and keep them fresh. This mask makes my skin tone a bit more even and fresh-looking;
Sephora Ginseng Eye Mask – The eye masks are lovely, as well, refreshing and soothing;
Rodial Dragon’s Blood Eye Masks – These ones contain a lot of serum in the bags which I tend to pour into travel pots and use it under my regular eye cream. The patches feel cooling and hydrating and I love them, wish they were more affordable;
Purederm Collagen Eye Zone Mask – Eye masks enriched with Collagen, Vitamin E and Green Tea Extract that brighten the area under my eyes. The serum absorbs really quickly after removing the patches, it feels refreshing and I’ll be repurchasing these;
Purederm Collagen Make-up Remover Cleansing Towelettes – It’s quite interesting how I really dislike facial wet wipes and use them only when I travel, yet I have at least a pack of empty ones in every post like this one. The collagen ones must be my least favourite of all Purederm I’ve tried, they just seem to not remove makeup that well and feel a bit more harsh on the skin. I’d stick to the tea tree ones;
L’Occitane x Pierre Hermé Paris Pamplemousse Rhubarbe  Lip Balm – You may already know I have a soft spot for L’Occitane limited edition lip balms. This one was a memory of our trip to Munich around Christmas holidays and this is one more reason to love it;
Avène Cicalfate Repair Cream – I have a full review on this product here. It can be used on face and body and helped me against the post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation I tend to get quite often;
Clarins Instant Eye Make-Up Remover – A travel mini of a cult classic, you can’t go wrong with this one;
L’Oréal Skin Perfection Perk-up Cream and Eye Care – That’s a great duo if you want a tinted moisturiser for your face and under the eyes because they even out the skin tone but also have skincare benefits. It looks lovely once applied on the skin and it was actually mum who got me into these;
Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara – I have mixed feelings towards this mascara maybe because I had really high hopes considering how many people compare it to Benefit’s Roller Lash. I quite like how fluttery it makes my eyelashes look…when it’s near the time to throw it in the bin. The rest of the time, the formula is just too wet, it doesn’t give me the separation, volume and curl that Roller Lash provides and I’m not so sure if I love it;
La Roche-Posay Respectissime Volume Mascara – On the other hand, this is a brilliant mascara that I want to find a full size of. It gives a similar to the YSL Effet Faux Cills look and doesn’t irritate my sensitive eyes;
Essence Mini Lipgloss – These are some of the loveliest affordable glosses and the mini was given to me by a dear friend, I love the colour and it was nice having it in my hand luggage during my travels;
Dior DIORSKIN Forever Perfect Skin-Perfecting Foundation SPF 35 – The best foundation for my skin type, I’m actually quite sad that I’ve used it up because I don’t seem to have a backup. You can read my full review on it here;
Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer – Not sure how many times I’ve spoken about it and how many tubes I’ve used up but you can find my thoughts on it here;
Urban Decay Naked Skin One & Done Hybrid Complexion Perfector SPF 20 – I use it on its own or as a primer and I like how it evens out the skin tone and makes everything look smoother and natural.

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Body and Hair Products

Lumene Cloudberry Hand Cream – The same dear friend of mine gave it to me and I couldn’t thank her enough! This is such a hydrating hand cream and at the same time doesn’t feel greasy on the hands. The scent is subtle, so it can be used by men, too;
Neal’s Yard Remedies Bee Lovely Hand Cream – All the hand creams I use up are ones I love and this has a great orange scent combined with wonderful moisturising properties;
The Body Shop Frosted Plum Hand Cream – Reminds me of cosy winter days that were not so long ago, actually. The scent is not too overpowering and the cream is very nice itself but I wish it wasn’t limited edition;
Yves Rocher Pear & Cocoa Hand Cream – I really like the brand’s hand creams and when a Christmas scent is added, I’m in love. Now that I’m smelling it again, I wish I took more of it during the holidays;
Yves Rocher Pear & Cocoa Bath & Shower Gel – The corresponding body wash was amazing, as well. I love that scent wasn’t too overpowering or sweet but still remained different and special;
Yves Rocher Almond Orange Blossom Relaxing Shower Oil – I never knew the brand had shower oils! I really enjoyed this one, it feels gentle on the skin, it’s not really foamy, it has a slightly herbal scent which I personally like and I really want to try more;
L’Oréal Arginine Resist Double Elixir Express Conditioner – I always use leave-in conditioners, I just love them and these spray ones are quite easy to use. Plus, in the winter my hair tends to get a bit more flyaways and knots than usual and this product did a pretty good job at helping me with that;
L’Oréal Elseve Nutri-Gloss Shampoo – When it comes to shampoos, I go through so many so quickly that I don’t even look in details what’s in stores at the moment. That’s why I tend to go for the ones I know like this one here that makes my hair really shiny and clean;
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Fluide – It has a light texture that feels soothing and nourishing, the pump is really handy and I’d purchase it again;
L’Occitane Foot Cream – This mini came in the brand’s advent calendar and it helped me a lot during the freezing winter nights because I woke up to the softest feet on the next morning. I might need a full size of it;
L’Occitane Cherry Blossom Shimmering Lotion – The range is probably my favourite of all L’Occitane ones but this lotion is too shimmery for my taste, so it was nice trying it but I would stick to the cherry blossom body wash, hand cream and the fragrance;
This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray – I’m not sure if it really helps you sleep better but the scent is definitely relaxing and calming.

This is everything I’ve used up lately, now I’m off to make a list with what I need to repurchase.

Drugstore Beauty Haul | Fall 2016

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I can’t hide it, I just love autumn and the fall beauty launches. I genuinely think that spring and fall beauty releases are the most exciting ones and always look forward to seeing them.

I’m away from Norway which means it’s the perfect time to do some drugstore shopping. I’ve mentioned before that there aren’t that many affordable brands in the country, so whenever I travel, I try to stock up on some highstreet products.

Not all of the items here are necessarily autumn launches but these two from Essence are quite new and I just loved the shades when I saw them. There’s a new Try it. Love it! Fall/Winter 2016 Collection from the brand with products like face and eyeshadow palettes, nail polishes, bases and lipsticks. If you’ve seen some of my posts, you’d know I’m a big fan of the brand’s lipsticks because they have a lot of different shades and finishes. I picked up the Matt Matt Matt Lipstick in the shade 02 Perfect Match which isn’t drying on the lips, at all, it’s light and creamy, very comfortable to wear and I believe there were two more shades. If you have trouble finding the right matte lipstick, give this one a go because it looks quite matte but doesn’t feel matte. It lasts about 4 hours on me which is great, especially considering how affordable it is. Honestly, I’ve been using this lipstick every single day for the past two weeks, even if I’ve applied something else in the morning. I just love it and in fact, it doesn’t look as dark as it seems on the swatch.
The second product from the brand that I added to my shopping basket was their new Satin Touch Blush in the shade 20 Satin Love. This one is in the most beautiful rosewood shade that is perfect for autumn, there’s a slight sheen to it but no glitter and I forgot how pigmented Essence blushes were! Really happy with these two products and I’d recommend checking them out.

I needed a new face powder and I remembered many people were talking about Catrice powders. The decision was tough because there were many on the display and also, how gorgeous the latest Catrice products look? I limited myself to their All Matt Plus Shine Control Powder in 010 Transparent. It’s a finely-milled powder that doesn’t make my face look flat, it mattifies but also gives radiance to the skin and I love it. I do have to use it a couple of times a day because it’s still quite warm and the shine peaks through but I really regret not checking out Catrice powders earlier.

There’s a brand I haven’t seen before called Aura and I was intrigued by their liquid lipsticks, sadly, the shades I liked were sold out. So, I decided to try their Correct Me! Concealer in the shade 302 Pastel Beige. I was surprised by the shade range, they had so many shades and it was difficult to pick the right one with the bad lighting in the store but I think this one is pretty good on me. I can use it around the face or under my eyes, as it’s not too light or brightening and I have to say, it works really well. The texture is creamy and not too thick, it has a very good coverage and lasts a decent amount of time. I do need to set it with powder because it creases a bit but I really like it. Another item from them is the Bronzer/Contour Brush and I have to say, their brushes are hit and miss but I like this one, I haven’t used it that much yet but I like how soft it is.

Golden Rose have so many lip products that it’s slightly overwhelming. I’ve heard a lot about their Matte Lipstick Crayons and I picked up two shades but I already lost one of them, so I’ll have to go back and get a new one. The shade number 11 is a really pretty berry one and I can’t wait to wear it in the autumn/winter. The product goes on smoothly, feels comfortable and I haven’t noticed any drying, so far.

I also picked up a few skincare products that I’m curious about. The first one is Chamomile Water from Armina Bio. I love floral waters and this one feels very soothing and refreshing on the skin, it has a light scent and I think I might have to get the rest of the waters from the brand.
Still haven’t tried this Balea Aqua Moisturising Serum but I love the eye cream from the same range and I’m happy I also found the Sheet Mask.
Purederm is a Korean brand that has brilliant face wipes (and that comes from a person that doesn’t like face wipes), so I picked up their Collagen Eye Zone Mask patches. I’ve tried them only once and they feel really soothing and refreshing.

The only hair product comes from L’Oreal and it’s the Arginine Resist Double Elixir Express Conditioner. I used to use their spray leave-in conditioners and I remembered how shiny and soft my hair was and everyone was telling me it smelled amazing. This is a bi-phased treatment and I use it on both, damp or dry hair, it doesn’t make it greasy or dirty-looking. I love how it makes my hair easy to comb, glossy and soft, it also smells of berries.

These won’t be my last drugstore purchases this month, so if you have any recommendations about what I should take a look at, please leave me a comment!

Favourite Drugstore Concealers

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If I have to name only one make-up product that I can’t go out without, it must be concealer. I have really dark circles under my eyes, pretty visible redness on my cheeks and combination skin that gets a blemish or two from time to time. For me, concealers are those tiny little helpers that can make you look more awake, fresh, healthy and still natural. That’s why I’m always trying new ones and looking for the best one out there.

It has to be mentioned, there are many amazing concealers at the drugstore, I quite often reach for affordable picks and really wanted to gather around my favourite ones.

There are two concealers in a pot among the best drugstore ones I’ve ever tried. I use them under my eyes as a corrector or around my face because the coverage is really good. The first one is the Catrice Camouflage Cream which is probably the most popular product from the brand. It has to be warmed well before application because it has pretty thick consistency that can look and feel heavy and a bit dry. I use my fingers to apply it and the tiniest amount of product, as it has really high coverage. They now have a liquid version of this concealer and I should have a look at it.
The second one is from Essence and it’s actually a really handy duo. I often use this Camouflage Cream Concealer when I travel because it has a lighter and a darker shade that can be mixed together and that’s basically all I need when I’m away. These ones feel a bit lighter on the skin than the Catrice concealer but still have very good coverage and lasting power.

I’ve had a love-hate relationship with the Maybelline Age Rewind Eye Concealer for such a long time but I think there are definitely more positives. What I don’t like so much is that it doesn’t really cover my dark circles but it does give an airbrushed look. It actually has a pretty decent coverage for such thin consistency, it doesn’t settle into fine lines and has a really smooth finish. I prefer my concealers to be a bit creamier but I’ve used this one all over my face on weekends when I want to get ready in a couple of minutes and it just looks amazing! So, it’s worth trying and mentioning, I like it, I just don’t love it because it doesn’t actually ‘erase’ my dark circles and the sponge is a bit too big to work with around the eyes but it does blend beautifully, it’s lightweight and it’s my do-it-all weekend product.

If you need a bit more coverage, Revlon Colourstay Concealer would be a good choice. It’s not a highlighting product but it does a great job at covering dark circles and blemishes. It can be a bit drying if you have dry skin and the scent is a bit unpleasant but I like the creamy texture of it and it lasts really long time on me.

There are two Rimmel concealers that I really really like, I actually didn’t expect to like the Match Perfection one but now I use it every day. It has a brush applicator which I find quite comfortable to use, it’s definitely not full coverage but medium and has a brightening effect. I have to say, there were a couple of times when I had only this concealer with me and had to use it to cover imperfections around my face. I was surprised that actually, it didn’t draw attention to them but at the same time made my under eye area more radiant. It has a lovely texture, not too thick, not too thin, the shades have great undertones that look flattering and I can always rely on this product to make me look a bit more fresh. The Wake Me Up Concealer is definitely one I’d use only under my eyes because it has light reflecting properties, it can also be applied at the high points of the face and looks beautiful. It’s a great concealer to mix or to use over corrector because the consistency is lovely, it’s buildable and blends really well. One thing I’d say about Rimmel concealers is the limited range of shades and that’s probably the only downside.

These are some of my favourite drugstore concealers and I hope you can recommend some more because I always love trying new ones!
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