** Not Tested On Animals ** This is a fab highlighter. I use it in the arch of my eyebrow, on the inner corners, or all over my lid. It blends well & has enough shimmer to be noticeable but not so much anyone who looks at you in sunlight will be blinded. I've even used this dusted lightly all over as neutral 'glow' powder & it works really well in that capacity too. Even in Australia the land of overpriced makeup, it's only like $3. This is one of those cheap & brilliant little secret items that I don't know why everyone uses & loves.
Powder -Hourglass - Ambient Lighting Powder in Luminous Light
VerySplendid 5/8/2013 1:43:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** My friend went to the States for a couple of weeks, and he kindly consented to finding a Sephora to purchase something for me. After much pondering, I decided on this as it got great reviews from Goss & Temptalia. Often when someone writes a bad review, a bunch of people will jump in to say that the reviewer isn't applying it correctly. OK, so this is powder. I've been using make up for 25 years and I'm pretty sure I've got the hang of powder application by now. Maybe I wouldn't be so disappointed if this only cost $20 or $30 instead of fifty-f*cking-dollars. Or if there weren't numerous reviews gushing about how great it is. It's glittery. There were little specks of glitter all over my face. I most definitely would not have bought this if I was in store. If any Australian reviewers want to swap this for anything, PM me. Other reviewers seem to think it's great!
Loose Powders -Meow Cosmetics - Meow Minerals Crystalline Cat Glow Powder
VerySplendid 5/4/2013 10:36:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** I wrote to Meow Cosmetics customer service specifying what I need (full coverage mineral foundation which doesn't make my look dry & dusty/settle in my wrinkles & with the right amount of glow to make me look amazing but subtly so). The helpful consultant Elynor wrote back with some great shade recommendations and said that she herself wears the medium coverage blend (Pampered Puss) with Crystalline Cat Glow Powder on top. I prefer the full coverage blend (Flawless Feline) which is one of the best mineral foundations I've tried but what really shoves the whole she-bang over the finish line & into the # 1 spot is the Cat Glow Powder. I've heard people say that a product has 'blurred' their pores and I never knew what they meant - until now. Truly amazing. If I was tremendously rich I'd buy a sky-writer to etch 'Meow Cosmetics Crystalline Cat Glow Powder - HG! HG! HG! HG! HG! HG! HG!' across the far horizons and circle the world a million times. Well probably not. But you get the picture. Bloody good stuff.
Powder -Everyday Minerals - foundation semi-matte formula
VerySplendid 5/1/2013 9:28:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** Semi-Matte Base in Winged Butter Skin type: normal to dry but acne prone. Desperately seeking a new HG foundation since I found out MAC test on animals after being bought out by Estee Lauder. MAC is now sold in China, and Chinese law requires that ALL cosmetics be tested on animals. For reference, I am MAC NC25 / NC30 - see my notepad for my colour matches to other brands. All previous mineral make ups I've tried have left me looking old & dusty. But I figured that things improve as time goes by & I wanted to try it again as it's so much better for allowing your skin to breathe & be healthy. Good old Goss make up artist got me on to this.. actually he recommended the jojoba formula but I don't think it comes in my shade. Knowing this has a propensity to make me look like a dusty old relic, I applied Face of Australia's tinted moisturiser in medium first, then applied the mineral foundation in Winged Butter. The coverage was not full enough & it did leave me looking a bit dusty. Since then I've been using a tiny amount of Kevyn Aucoin SX08 buffed into my face all over with Winged Butter on top & it's the perfect combo. Full coverage, not cakey, great colour match & longevity. Love! There's not much product in the container, I think it only took me a couple of months to finish & I believe I was using it conservatively. Still searching for a mineral HG, but I will re-purchase because it's an excellent setting powder with the added benefit of providing extra coverage. ETA: This gets 3 lippies for being an average mineral foundation which leaves me with a slightly dry finish, but it gets 5 for being bloody fab as a setting powder.
** Not Tested On Animals ** My review is for Blackest Black but it also comes in four other shades: Brilliant Blue, Espresso, Pure Purple & Blackest Shimmer. Highly pigmented, truly budge-proof and only $10 - amazing! It comes with a little brush which is contained within the lid, usually the applicators that come with the product are largely useless but this one is actually ok. There is 2.3ml of product which I expect will last ages but as it's smaller than the other brands I've used (MAC, e.l.f.) hopefully it won't dry out before it's finished. I don't like to throw HG status around too casually but I think this might be it. Superior to the MAC equivalent as the pigment is better, it goes on more smoothly, and it's cruelty free! Bam. FoA for the win. (I uploaded the picture from http://the-beautifool.blogspot.com.au/2013/03/face-of-australia-budgeproof-gel_21.html)
** Not Tested On Animals ** I was recently burned by a cheapie drugstore liquid eyeliner (Essence, $4) which was supposedly waterproof but flaked off after 8 hours. Such a classy look! This bad boy I'm happy to say has a lovely matte finish & stays on all day. I usually hate the spongey applicators because they never allow for exact application, but this one is super thin & allows for the precision I need. I paid $22 here in Australia (I think David Jones is the theBalm's only retailer here) but the cost is worth it considering its longevity, finish, mode of application, and cruelty-free status. HG!
Tinted Moisturizer -Unlisted Brand - Face of Australia
VerySplendid 3/3/2013 2:58:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** I love this & wear it every day. The coverage is minimal, someone with fairly good skin (ie, not me) could probably get away with wearing just this with lip gloss & mascara and still look fab. I wear this under my preciousssss Kevin Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer SX08 which does not contain SPF, and also when I wear Everyday Minerals Semi-Matte in Winged Butter (also no SPF) as it provides a good base for the product to adhere to. My shade is 'medium'.
** Not Tested On Animals ** I'm always running late to work which means I nearly always do my mascara on the bus. For some reason, I'd left my makeup bag at home & had to buy mascara before work. The applicator is hourglass-shaped & made of rubber. I was cursed with short, straight & unremarkable lashes, and this mascara makes them considerably fuller without clumping. I've never believed in any mascara's claims to curl but this one actually does open up the eye with a bit of curling action. I love this & wear it every day! No flaking or smudging & easy enough to remove. The only thing stopping it from being HG is that it has a reasonably strong chemical smell. Which isn't particularly comforting being near your eyes.
** Not Tested On Animals ** Most inexpensive eyeliners flake or sting my eyes but this one glides on smoothly, stays on all day & is easily removed at night. Lost a lippie only because the applicator is awful, I use an eyeliner brush from another brand. I paid $4 for this but it would be worth paying at least 3 times as much! A really great product for the price. ETA: flakes off throughout the day. Sometimes you get what you pay for.
Foundations -Kevyn Aucoin - Sensual Skin Enhancer Shades
VerySplendid 12/29/2012 8:41:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer SX08 Skin type: normal to dry but acne prone. Desperately seeking a new HG foundation since I found out MAC test on animals after being bought out by Estee Lauder. MAC is now sold in China, and Chinese law requires that ALL cosmetics be tested on animals. For reference, I am MAC NC25 / NC30 - see my notepad for my colour matches to other brands. I've been dying to try this ever since I saw Goss review it months ago! Chances are this isn't the first review you've read for this product. The overall warning I took from all reviews is how pigmented it is - this caused me to apply it too lightly in trying to avoid the caked-on effect. Then of course I went in the opposite direction & slathered it on waaaay to thick. Goss has been promising forever to post a tutorial on how to apply it but never did, so I had to wing it. BEFORE: my skin is normal/dry so I prime with Face of Australia tinted moisturiser which contains SPF15+. CONSISTENCY: uber thick & creamy. APPLICATION METHOD: I de-pot a small amount & get a wee bit on the pad of my middle finger & dab it all over the area I'm about to work on. Using my Sigma F80 flat top brush, I stipple all over then lightly buff it in. Finished with a scant application of Ben Nye banana powder & during the unforgiving & melty summer weather, a spritz of Skindinavia setting spray. Voila! ETA: my personal preference is for using a flat top stippler but a damp beauty blender gives an equally gorgeous finish & helps to sheer it out if you apply too much. COLOUR MATCH? This suits my colouring more so than MAC NC30 which is a tad too tangerine. That being said, SX08 is quite a warm/yellow shade & I think it'll be a tiny bit too dark for my winter skin. To adjust the shade I add a few dabs of a lighter cream foundation which works well. I love that this is so customisable. OVERALL: I lurrrrrve this foundation! I wear it 4+ times a week & it's by no means quick & easy to slap on but it looks bloody fantastic so who cares? I had to lose a lippy due to the minor breakouts I've been getting along my jawline since using it. The finish & staying power is amazing. RE-PURCHASE? Hells yeah! This is a product for makeup enthusiasts who don't mind putting the effort in. While I'd like to marry & have the babies of this foundation, I can't quite give it HG status because of the breakouts & pore-clogging nature of it. But still an absolute corker. ETA: I've tried several other correctors/concealers since buying this & nothing stacks up. Have amended to 5 lippies - HG to the power of infinity.
Makeup Brushes -Sigma - F80 Flat Top Synthetic Kabuki (was SS197)
VerySplendid 12/29/2012 8:34:00 AM
**Cruelty Free - Synthetic Bristles** LOVE THIS BRUSH more than anything ever! Definite re-purchase. All things make up in Australia are more expensive than anywhere else but even so, I'll happily pay the $25 (approx) I paid for my precious. HG! The packaging was excessive & ridiculous. But overall this tops the old faithful E.L.F. flat top buffer.
Foundations -Unlisted Brand - Kett Hydro Foundation
VerySplendid 9/20/2012 10:30:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** Skin type: normal to dry but acne prone. Desperately seeking a new HG foundation since I found out MAC test on animals after being bought out by Estee Lauder. MAC is now sold in China, and Chinese law requires that ALL cosmetics be tested on animals. For reference, I am MAC NC25 / NC30 - see my notepad for my colour matches to other brands. BEFORE: applied a water based primer + water based moisturiser. CONSISTENCY: like water. APPLICATION METHOD: I used 3 different methods, beauty blender, fingers & flat topped stippler. I did 2 layers & the coverage was still quite sheer, so the 3rd & final layer I used my fingers so I could pat it on & really build up the product. LONGEVITY: I didn't actually wear it out like I intended because I wasn't able to achieve adequate coverage. OVERALL: I have acne scarring & some discolouration, so really I am looking for full coverage. Also, the time it takes to do 3 layers is not feasible for day-to-day use. I really wanted to like this product & I feel bad for lowering the overall score! One good thing about this range is that it is highly customisable & it is possible to achieve an exact colour match. RE-PURCHASE? Only if I had air brush equipment. **Purchased samples from CRC in shades O3 & O5, my colour match was approximately 2 parts O3 + 1 part O5.**
** Not Tested On Animals ** I bought this based on Makeup Alley reviews but didn't like it. I thought it would be comparable to Wet 'n' Wild's Brulee but Almondine is not as pigmented & is of lesser quality. I'm now slightly put off Milani because of this which is a shame because I only buy cruelty free brands.
Eye Makeup Remover -TheBalm - Balms Away Eye Makeup Breakup
VerySplendid 9/5/2012 2:58:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** This is a classic example of a product marketed towards women being sold at a shockingly inflated price - so long as it looks purdy we'll buy it! This is basically vaseline - I wish I'd bothered to read the ingredients before I bought it. theBalm used to be a brand I was happy to support but this product is a nicely packaged overpriced rip-off - I'm disgusted with myself for being sucked in by this. I ended up giving this to my sister & have returned to using Vaseline again which is quite frankly a better product & a tiny fraction of the price. Will not re-purchase. I do not recommend this unless you feel like wasting your money on an (at best) average product.
Eye Shadow -Wet 'n' Wild - Color Icon Single in Brulee
VerySplendid 9/4/2012 1:04:00 AM
** Not Tested On Animals ** This is a creamy, matte, eyeshadow with decent pigment - it is not chalky & has minimal fallout. It is a subtle shade best used for providing a neutral wash of colour. I have darker pigmentation around my eyes & this is perfect for evening out skin tone. Shimmer shades are aging & should be used sparingly on older, saggier, more crepey lids - Brulee is my most used eyeshadow & I will no doubt re-purchase.