Thursday, February 19, 2015

Review: Bespoque Skincare*

Last year I received an email about a new player on the skincare field. Bespoque skincare, in conjunction with Terry White chemists have made it possible for you to design your own moisturiser. Everyone's skin is different, and everyone has different skincare concerns. So the idea is, you either head on to their website, or visit them in-store, fill out a questionnaire that asks questions such as what your skin concerns are, and what features you would like (e.g. improve skin elasticity, repair sun damage, intense hydration) and then a moisturiser is created especially for you! You can also get creative in choosing the perfect name for your moisturiser.

I think it is such a genius idea that you can totally design and customise a moisturiser, so I was really excited to be offered the opportunity to try this product out. The online quiz is really easy to navigate - even if you know nothing about skincare, you know your skin so this makes it really easy to pick and choose appropriate options. I think it's great that you can design it in-store or online; this company is really all about choice! Even the little details like having the option to choose your own name for the moisturiser is nice, and puts you in control. 

You don't, unfortunately, get any choice in the packaging - the moisturiser comes in a really solid tub, and whilst it is beautiful it is impractical. You need to use your fingers to scoop the product out, which can lead to contamination. You could always decant this into a pump bottle, but then you miss out on the beautiful packaging - it would be nice to have an option between the two. 

So, onto my thoughts about the product itself. I've been using this for about four months now, and I really love the moisturiser that I designed. I wanted something that was lightweight and would absorb easily into my skin, whilst still giving my skin lots of moisture, and combatting redness. I kind of thought I was asking too much, but I really feel that this product does what I want from it! It is definitely lightweight, and I am loving that for the warmer months. I notice a lot less redness the mornings following the nights that I have used this product, compared to the nights that I haven't used it. It also makes me feel really special that this is a product just for me! 

I love that with this product you can easily change it up and order something completely different if your skin needs change, or if the weather changes (I would want something a lot richer in Winter for example). 

The only thing I don't like is that I've lost my order I can't remember exactly what options I chose for this concoction to be able to make it again. That's obviously my own silly fault though. So just a tip if you do make this - don't lost that order number, because having it makes it really easy to re-order the exact same moisturiser. 

This product was provided for editorial consideration. All opinions are my own and I was not paid for this post. For further information, see my disclaimer page here. 

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Haul: Priceline's 40% off Skincare Sale

I love a good 40% off sale, and Priceline have a couple throughout the year. I headed into my local store to take advantage of their latest 40% off sale on skincare. 
I'm proud to say that I really restrained myself, and bought mostly practical items. I'm really happy with my current skincare routine, so admittedly restraining myself wasn't that difficult. 

Banana Boat Faces SPF 50+
I have used Nivea's face sunscreen for a while, but decided to branch out and trial Banana Boat's version. This has a much higher SPF, is broad spectrum and is non-oily. It sinks into the skin quite quickly, making it easier to go ahead and apply my normal make-up over the top. This is also water resistant, with no added fragrances. 

Banana Boat Everyday SPF 30+
I almost always apply sunscreen before going out, and I really wanted a lightweight sunscreen that I could wear every day. I decided to go with an SPF of 30+, rather than any higher - this is still broad spectrum and if I was going to be actually spending my day in the sun (like at the beach for example), I would probably apply a different, higher coverage. SPF 30+ is more than enough for every-day sunscreen. 

Cancer Council Everyday Sunscreen SPF 30+
So I'm starting to look a little sun-phobic right about now... 
I only picked this one up because it's a teeny tiny version. A few times this Summer I've caught myself out and about and haven't had sunscreen or put it on that morning. So I thought this would be a good size to carry around with me in Summer. 

Bioderma Sensibo H20
I already have some of this at home, but picked up another bottle to take advantage of the 40% off. 

Milk&Co Rejuvinating Masque
I really like the milk&co facial cleanser (reviewed here), so when I saw that Priceline stock the brand I impulse bought this face mask. This is an exfoliating, hydrating mask for dry skin and contains fruit extracts, vitamin e and green tea. 

Lanolips Lemonaid Lip Aid
I love, love, love the lanolips 101 ointment in Peach flavour, so impulse-bought the "lemonaid" flavour. This contains organic lemon oil, so exfoliates your lips as well as treats them for dryness. It leaves a high gloss on your lips, and the scent of lemon is high. I absolutely love this product - although I wonder about whether the citrus would make your lips more susceptible to sunburn. To stay on the safe side, I would only use this indoors. 

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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Her Fashion Box: January

There was an interesting mix of products in the January HFB, with the theme being "Urban Aztec". This was a generous box, with a good mix of fashion and beauty; there were two fashion items and five beauty items within. 

Urban Rituelle Summer Scent Perfume Spray (RRP $14.95 / 20mL)
This was a full-sized item, and I received the scent 'frangipani'. I'm really not a fan of this scent. It's sickly sweet, so I'm not really a fan of it. It kind of transports me back to being a 13 year old, during my summer holiday break between year 6 and 7, and discovering the world of beauty through cheap cosmetics and body sprays. 

Le Tan Fast Tan in Bronze
This must have been the 'bonus' item for filling in the survey last month, as it's not listed in the magazine and I'm pretty certain we've received this before. Fake tanning is not really my thing, so I'll probably save this for a giveaway or something. 

Nuxe Huile Prodigeuse Multi-Purpose Dry Oil (RRP $39.95 / 100mL)
We received a 10mL sample size of this. This can be used in skin or hair, and contains Macadamia, Hazelnut, Borage, Sweet Almond, Camellia and St John's Wort Oils and Vitamin E. Apparently one bottle of these is sold every six seconds in the world, which is a pretty impressive statistic. I have really dry skin and hair, so I love oils. This has a really subtle, nutty scent which - although it kind of reminds me of old people - I actually really like. 

We received two HFB-branded beauty tools in this month's box, and I'm left unimpressed by both. 

HFB Body Brush (RRP $14.95)
I received one that had bristles falling out all over the place, which was a disappointment. Nevertheless, I gave it a go - this is a dry brush used for manual exfoliation of your body. My skin isn't overly sensitive, but this just irritated the crap out of it and left it stinging and red-raw. Maybe people with tougher skin would find this more useful, but the bristles were way too harsh for me. 

HFB Nail Block (RRP $8.95)
I love a good nail block, but honestly - this was not great. I don't know if I got a dud one, but every single side felt the same - even the 'file' side had no grit. I show J all the items in my box each month, and he was so confused by this, asking me if I was sure that this wasn't just the container and the nail file was inside. Bless his cotton socks.

Bones Necklace (RRP $34.99)
I really, really love this necklace. It's a beautiful silver, with intricate detailing and is designed to be worn high up on the neckline. It has a nice weight to it...I just really like this necklace. So much so that it almost makes up for the disappointing beauty items. 

Iris Ring (RRP $14.95)
I think this ring is really pretty. It's got similar intricate detailing to the necklace, although this has a slightly "cheaper" feel to it. It's an adjustable size which is great and I really love the blue colour. I think it would add a nice pop of colour to a monochrome outfit. 

I loved the jewellery pieces in January's box. Beauty items were hit and miss, but the Nuxe dry oil was definitely the winner -  I'm really looking forward to trialling it.

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Monday, February 16, 2015

Recently, in Pictures #63

The past 2-3 weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind. So much has happened, and so quickly that I have barely had time to update the people in my life, let alone this blog. 
The biggest update is that I got a new job! Again, this happened quite quickly - I found out about the position and applied for it on Wednesday 21 January, had an interview on the Friday 23 January, and by Tuesday 27 January found out that I had it. I then started for two days of training on that Thursday and Friday - 29 and 30 January, starting officially the following week. 

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The position is amazing - I love who I am working with, and I am loving what I am doing. The only downside is that it's part-time (jobshare) ... only because it would be a dream to do this full-time. 
I had a beautiful friend come over and give me a massive bunch of lillies to say 'congrats', and J and I headed out with another friend to the Ritz at Marrickville to play some comedy trivia and celebrate with a glass of wine. 


Because this job is only part-time, and due to a massive tax issue I just discovered, I am currently working three jobs. It feels weird to not be getting ready to head back to uni next month - this is the first time in my life I am not studying. But I love working hard, and am just so happy with where I am right now. 

Last Friday night we had a family night out at Canterbury Race Track for the Night Races event. J and I must be getting better at being punters ... we were up a whole 60 cents when the night ended. My favourite part of the races is watching the horses do their little show-off walk right before they race. They're such beautiful animals. 

J bought us a massive Whitman's Sampler box of chocolates. We're both pretty "against" Valentine's Day (although I try to take the day as an opportunity to tell my friends how great they are!), so J kept stressing that this was not a V-day gift, it was just coincidence. I don't care either way - I get to eat lots of chocolate. 

I tried my first eggs fresh from a chicken this week - they were incredible. I'd heard before about how much better they tasted and was mildly skeptical...I am definitely now a convert. 


My cooking adventures are coming along nicely... I was craving some veggies this week so made a delicious chilli ginger chicken stir-fry with brown rice. I have also perfected this ravioli recipe - It is so delicious that I dream about it, so keep an eye out because I will share it later during the week! 


In fitness wrist is still incredibly painful and I am still lacking a great range of motion. I have been visiting my physio, who thinks I should be able to get back on the pole within a few weeks. This is such exciting news, but is slightly dampened by the fact that I'm still feeling pain in my wrist. The pain is quite similar to the pain I had when I first broke it, which sets off alarm bells in my head. I've booked an appointment to re-visit the specialist at the hospital later this month. So keep your fingers crossed for me that the bone is healed! 

In the mean-time I'm really focussing on stretching and flexibility. This is the year I will get my splits - back bends are a little trickier to work on when you can't go in to a bridge so I guess for now I'll just keep training the scorpion! 

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Friday, February 13, 2015

What's In My Rubbish Bin? #2

My last empties post was almost an entire year ago! I should probably make an effort to do this more regularly, because I would have just collecting rubbish, without realising how extensive the pile had become. I have 11 empties to share with you! 

Sally Hansen Strengthening Nail Polish Remover
Manicare Nail Polish Remover
I don't really understand how the Sally Hansen polish remover is strengthening when it contains quite a lot of acetone, but alas that is the claim that they make. I liked both of these - the Manicare one didn't have any acetone, but I personally prefer to use nail polish remover that does contain it, so SH wins this round. I have already purchased a new bottle of the SH. 

Loreal Gentle Eye Make-up Remover
This featured in my last empties post, where I proclaimed my love for it, so it's really not surprise that it has shown its face around here again. I did lament in my last post about the disappointment of the new packaging, so for now I'm going to steer clear of re-purchasing and try out what else is out there. 

Priceline Round Cotton Pads
I really didn't like these. I usually buy the Swisspers ones, but these were cheaper so into my basket they went. Unfortunately, they separated upon getting wet, and left cotton-y bits everywhere. Not a fan, won't repurchase. 

John Frieda Radiant Red Daily Conditioner
A friend at work gave me this when I dyed my hair red, as she had it sitting around at home and had no use for it. There was enough for three washes in there. I like how silky and shiny this leaves my hair, but I am dubious about the "colour magnifying" claims, as although the product is bright red, it contains no pigment. I will possibly purchase this and see how I feel about it after using a whole bottle. But only after I make it through whatever other conditioners I have in my shower. 

L'occitane Almond Shower Oil
I have written about this before, in this post. I love this product so much. It smells beautiful, moisturises my skin and is incredibly luxurious. I actually repurchased the "eco" refill bag of this, so I just poured it into the old bottle, and still have some left over to refill once that runs out! 

Rexona Clinical Protection
I feel like I sweat more than normal people. Which is where this handy anti-perspirant comes in. I was pretty impressed with this, it seemed to work. It definitely works better when you follow the instructions and apply it at night. This is a cream product that dispenses out of the top grill like worms when you twist the bottom. I think though that the pressure must build up inside and the product works its way out the top somehow, because sometimes I would open it and there would be lots of cream smooshed into the lid. 

Make-up Store Vitamin Day Primer
I love this primer, and have already purchased another bottle. This is so hydrating, makes my foundation stay on all day and I don't get that weird "separation" that happens with some other primers. When I re-stocked the sales assistant told me they were discontinuing this, which makes me so sad. If you have any recommendations for primer let me know! 

Dove Silky Nourishment Body Cream
I love how easily and quickly this moisturiser sinks into my skin, making my skin soft without leaving it greasy. The tub packaging isn't that ideal due to contamination, but it does make it easy to get out a big scoop, and to use up every last drop. I only really use this on my legs but I did love it. Will probably repurchase. 

Stila Smudge-stick Waterproof Eyeliner
This eyeliner came with my Stila 'In the Light' palette. It's creamy, soft and glides on the eyes without tugging. This eyeliner is really pigmented - the colour is brown, but could almost pass for being black. I had about a centimetre left of product on this, when I accidentally broke it. I would definitely repurchase this, and would love to try some of the other colours that Stila have on offer.

Maybelline Eye-Studio Gel Eyeliner
This one technically isn't an empty, as it had gone dry well before then, so I decided to throw it out. This gel eyeliner is my go-to for creating cat eyes. Gel liner is generally a lot easier to work with than liquid liner, and this one in particular is really black, and stays on the lid for hours. I have already repurchased.

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Sunday, February 8, 2015

February Goals

It is time to reflect on how I went with my goals for January, and set some new ones for February! I am (humbly) impressed with my January efforts. Most got ticked off from my list, which is a satisfying feeling. I have some great new goals set for February, which I have already started chipping away at.

- Cook one meal each week 
This was mostly achieved, and is something I want to continue doing for the rest of the year.
- Clean out my wardrobe
Hoorah! I gave my wardrobe a big cull and donated three big bags of stuff! I was then able to re-organise my drawers, and sort of my cupboard. I'm feeling a lot less weighed down. 
- Stretch 5 days a week
This was a bit hit-and miss. There was one week where I was super busy every single night, so almost no stretching happened. Then other weeks, I was amazing and stretched every day. I need more consistency in my life.
- Sort out our New Zealand itinerary
Our itinerary for NZ is more-or-less sorted now. We have unfortunately had to push our flights back a few months, but that's okay because it gives us more time to save, and plan! 
- Catch up on the journalling missed because of my broken arm
There are still one or two events that I need to journal about. I have no doubt that this would have been completed, however writing for long periods still fatigues my wrist.
- Sort out all paperwork to be sent off to the Supreme Court for my admission!
All necessary paperwork got lodged with the Legal Profession Admission Board, and I will find out in mid-February if I will be attending the February admission ceremony (fingers crossed). I got the nasty surprise of the admission fee being a whopping $500...I'm still recovering from that shock. 

- Sell clothes from wardrobe clean-out
- Make a regular gym schedule (and stick to it)
- Postpone New Zealand flights
- Catch up on journalling
- Set a budget
- Send Valentine's Day cards
- Get back into regular plasma donating. 

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