Month: December 2012

Happy New Year!

2012 flew by. I went through changes in work and personal life, met some nice and fun people and did some memorable travels. I’m not one to make resolutions but I think some makeup resolutions would be ok. It would be fun at least to review them at the end of the next new year.

1. Start a Project X pan
I’ve been mulling over this for a long time now. I have no excuse not to start, except of course for all the new products that are to come in 2013 – I see pictures of Spring collections already … it’s a little crazy isn’t it? But I do need to use up some of my stash, especially the older ones. The monthly empties post provides the motivation I need so far. It is quite a feeling of accomplishment when I use something up, especially when it’s not skincare!

For powder products I will be happy if I just hit pan. So one blush and one powder foundation. I’m not going to include eyeshadows because that’s just impossible for me.

2. Be more selective with makeup purchases
Related to the above of course, and it’s something I’ve started doing already. I just need to focus and not be tempted by the LE label. I’m lucky I haven’t really been bitten by the MAC bug. Chanel is quick on their heels though it seems …

3. Sunscreen
Confession: I haven’t been putting any on since winter since I hardly spend much time outside anyway.

4. Stop picking
By that I mean spots. It’s a bad habit I need to break.

5. Actually wear my red lipsticks
Instead of just admiring them. And wear them during the day if I feel like it.

6. Give some TLC to my skin & hair
I’m turning 35 in 2013, not a big deal really but it’s a good time to really start taking care of my skin and my hair. All that makeup is not going to do much if the foundation is bad right? As for my hair, I’ve cut my long locks earlier this year and while it’s been a cinch to wash and dry, I wash it everyday because I wake up with lucky troll hair every morning. I need a solution for this as all that washing and heating isn’t good.

7. Try Patyka
I’ve always to try their products and I should take advantage of the fact that I’m in France when I do it. This of course has to wait until I’ve finished all my skincare stash …

8. Use my eyeshadows, especially the palettes
Enough said.

9. Regularly wash my makeup brushes
I’m not so bad at this really but some in-between washing periods are longer than others. Either I get better at the schedule or really start using a product to spot clean them after usage.

And lastly,
10. Blog frequently and regularly
This is going to be a real challenge but I promise I’ll try 🙂

Happy new year everyone!

Hits and Misses of 2012 – The Hits

Looking back the year I made so many purchases … it’s a little crazy but not quite out of hand, luckily. I’ve made many discoveries this year, tried new brands and what were for me new genre of products (highlighters for example). There’s almost an overwhelming amount of things I want to single out but I do realise I need to be selective and keep it streamlined. Even so I’m quite excited to gush about some of these products and you will find there are significantly more products in this entry than the ‘misses’, thankfully.

One last word on how I categorise, ‘Discoveries’ are not necessary instant favourites, however some of them do overlap into the ‘Hits’ category.
The products listed under ‘Hits’ are the real standouts that pop in my head instantly when I think about the topic. They are my ‘best-of’ and favourites of 2012.


La Roche-Posay Cicaplast
Perhaps my greatest skincare discovery of 2012, this is now my go-to SOS topical cream. I reach for this when I have peeling skin, flakiness or general tightness from the dry weather and it works like a charm.

Bourjois Magic Nail Polish Remover
I don’t know if Bourjois was the original innovator behind this but this has changed and improved the way I clean my nails. It’s fast, efficient and most of all I really like that it’s more environmentally friendly without the use of a million cotton balls to wipe polish off.

Kiehl’s Creme de Corps
I’m so late to the party it’s unbelieveable that only this year did I find out about the wonders of this cream. This has attained HG status during the year. (more…)

Hits and Misses of 2012 – The Misses

You may have noticed I didn’t do a favourites post in November. One of the reasons was that there weren’t any particular standouts, and the other was it would be less redundant if I were to consolidate it to make a favourites of the year post.

But what are hits without misses? I always find ‘Misses’ more interesting to read on blogs. I have a tendency to spend my time writing about products I like than those that I find lackluster, unless they are at the same time really bad and cost a lot or hyped about. So for once, and in no particular order, here are the products that disappointed, that didn’t work and that I’m pretty sure won’t find their way again under my roof. Not all of the products are 2012 releases, nonetheless they are what I discovered and purchased in 2012. Here they are, the Misses of 2012, or alternatively, ‘Products I won’t repurchase’: (more…)

Merry Christmas!

Work has been keeping me away from blogging. I still have to go to work today but will thankfully get two days to rest tomorrow and the day after. I hope to have the blog updated sometime between our belated Christmas celebration and dinner and recovering from the madness at work during the holidays. So glad the end is almost here!

Wishing you all a very happy holiday (for those that are on holidays) and a very enjoyable festive season. This is perhaps my favourite time of the year in Paris. Paris has always been more beautiful at night but come end of November to early December when they’ve put up the lights and decorations it really shimmers. They have an enormous Christmas tree this year near the end of the Tuileries garden not far from the ferris wheel. I still haven’t visited it yet – only saw it on route to work and back. Hopefully with some time off me and the man can do some walks around town and enjoy the last of the Christmas atmostphere before everything gets taken down.

Just one week before 2013 is here. Woohoo.

November Empties

Caudalie Peche de Vigne Shower Gel (200ml)
Got this half price. It is a soap-free formulation suitable for sensitive skin. Here is the blurb on the back:

Enriched with aloe vera, this shower gel maintains the skin’s physiological pH balance. Soft vine peach is infused with almond milk and fresh mint leaf to create a fresh scent.

Biodegradable gentle plant-based cleansing formula. Against animal testing.

The best thing about this shower gel, (apart from being SLS, parabens and mineral oil free) is the smell: like fresh summer peaches, not those artificial perfumey peach smell. The gel itself is clear and thickish, so that when you squeeze it you get a glob. I enjoyed using this, especially after using a string of unscented shower gels. I bought another scent during the same sale and am looking forward to using that!

Repurchase? Yes

SANA Super quick gel pencilliner EX
See in depth review here. This liner lasted me 4 months. It’s the first time I’ve used up an eyeliner and at such a rate.

Repurchase? A big yes.

YSL Natural Action Exfoliator Granule-Free (Sample, 5ml)
I usually don’t put samples in empties post but thought this is a product worth writing about. I got about 3-4 applications out of this tiny tube. As the name implies, it’s an exfoliator without granules. You apply the product on dry as you would an oil cleanser and massage until it liquifies and then you add some water to emulsify it and rinse off. The texture of the product is thick, like honey. So the initial massaging could tug a little if you don’t squeeze out enough product. I caught myself missing feeling the granules and doubting the efficiency of the product but my skin always feel baby soft after I use this. I think the massaging action helps a lot, and it’s something I should be doing but not. I am tempted to buy a full bottle of this when my go-to runs out. It is pricey though. On the other hand I also heard wonderful things about Darphin’s and would like to try that too.
Purchase? Yes


Dr. Hauschka Revitalising Mask (30ml)
This is a staple of mine for almost a decade (!) and I use it as a moisturising mask. It’s a greenish yellow colour lotion/cream in the tube, and I apply it all over my face and let it sink in for about 10 minutes before I take it off. First with a wet face cloth and then I rinse. My skin always feel drenched and pampered afterwards.
Repurchase? Yes.

Dr. Hauschka Rhythmic Night Conditioner (50 x 1ml)
I use this twice a year when the season changes. I’ve been using the ampoules for almost as long as I have the mask and it worked extremely well for me in the past. However I did remark that the last couple of times I used it (and this time as well) it broke me out. Not excessively, just a couple of spots here and there. I don’t know what to make of this. Either it’s a result of my skin regulating / rebalancing itself, or it’s a bad reaction. Nonetheless apart from the spots my skin feels excellent. I use one ampoule at night after cleansing and nothing else. I do this for a month. This is a pricey product, this particular box cost 53 euros when I bought it in Germany and it usually costs more than that here in France. I think I’ll wait until my skin is in better shape before I invest in another box.

Repurchase? Uncertain

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill 4 Colour Eyeshadow Palette

Some time ago I had this inexplicable determination to get some grey-toned eyeshadows, preferably matte if possible but it’s negotiable. I was very close to getting NARS duo in Brumes, but jumped ship at the last moment. Then I saw the preview pictures of the Armani quads and #1 Maestro got me excited – it looked like something that fitted the bill. I waited for the quads to be released here and then waited a little longer for reviews to come online and then some more, hoping to catch a Sephora -20% offer (I did). I was all ready to go … until I saw the preview pictures of the Burberry quads, #1 Smokey Grey in particular.

In the end I got the Armani simply because I was too impatient to wait for Burberry’s release here.

shaded lighting; colours more accurate in this picture
direct light
2 x 2g plus 2 x 1 g = 6g product total. (more…)