Friday, July 30, 2010

Review: MAC Petticoat mineralize skin finish (MSF)

MAC In the Groove collection was released in Australia on Monday 07/26 but I wasn't even aware until Wednesday, by which time, the coveted Stereo Rose MSF (that's mineralise skin finish for those not accustomed to acronyms) was sold out nation wide (I was told later that it sold out in David Jones and Myer Melbourne by Monday lunchtime and nationally by Tuesday lunchtime - I had no chance of picking one up really).

So as consolation, I picked up Petticoat MSF to take home with me.

Petticoat is essentially a light rosy pink shimmer powder with burgandy, bronze and gold veining running through. Application wise, depending on whether your powder has alot more veining of a particular colour, you can get a few shades from this one product (talk about versatility). Below are 3 swatches of the product: the typical blended colour, another where I picked up more of the burgundy/bronze pigment and the third where I mainly picked up on the rosy pink shimmer colour. 

 Petticoat blended, more bronze veining, more pink powder on NC30 skin
On skin: as a blush, I find Petticoat overly shimmery/frosty on my skin and accentuated all my pores and skin imperfections (as do all other MSFs). Layered on top of other matte peach blush or bronzers with a light hand using a duo fibre brush (eg. MAC 187 or 131 brush), it gives the right amount of glow and gives me that radiant awake look, especially after an hour or so when it has settled down on the skin - perfect for hiding the fact I didn't get enough sleep the night before.

I didn't initially love the colour, but have fallen head over heels with it over the last few days after figuring out how to layer with it  other blushes so I will definitely be giving it plenty more of my love.

In the Groove have quite a few pretty items in the collection, so I may go back to pick up a few items later, namely New vibe duo blush and By Candlelight MSF.  If you haven't checked it out yourself - run, don't walk to a MAC counter as the popular items are selling fast (I heard that the Jazzed Lipstick is going out like hotcakes and almost sold out as well).

Rating: 8.5/10 RRP A$46/ US$28

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Tackling dandruff

I never had any dandruff at all as a teen but in the past few years, those pesky flakes have been plaguing my head and causing me endless grief. The tell tale flakes are a constant annoyance and an embarrassing feature on my favourite black tops.

I've tried different anti-dandruff shampoos and conditioners - Head and Shoulders, Garnier anti-dandruff, T-Gel and Selsun Blue. All of these products reduced the dandruff but after a few weeks, they seem to stop working and I am left with dry brittle hair still mingled with large snow flakes. Maybe my scalp got used to the active ingredients, maybe I was producing more dandruff but I wanted to find something that treated and provided a semi permanent relief rather than temporary band-aid solutions.

And finally I found my saviour. Something that is so good, I'm almost willing to call it a cure too all my flakey situation - and all this using natural ingredients that is not harsh on hair at all.


Apple cider vinegar, or the humble AVC for short. That's right folks, no need for a cupboard full of medicated shampoos; vinegar is all you need and your flakes will be gone within a few good washes.

How I use it:  apply small amounts of AVC onto dry hair and massage into scalp. Do this to all areas where dandruff is active. Leave in hair for 5 minutes. If you have wounds or sores on your head, this will sting, so best not to do this if you have any cuts in your head.

Mix 1/3 cup of AVC with my usual shampoo (Clairols Herbal Essence with rosehip and jojoba) and use that to wash you hair as normal. I sometimes have to do extra rinses to remove the sour smell from my hair/head. Condition with my favourite conditioner.

AVC is also fabulous as a final rinse to add shine and softness to hair. You will need to do extra rinsing to remove the smell though.

I found the smell of AVC difficult to deal with. I needed an extra round of shampoo on its own and an extra rinse  to removes the last traces of the sour scent.

Other Info: 
When treating flakes, I wash my hair every 2nd day (it is harder to do during winter) and by the end of the week, my flakes are usually non-existent. I then do a maintenance shampoo with AVC once a week after my flakes are under control. My hair is silkier, softer and flake free since I've been following this regime.

I've been told that AVC may strip colour from hair so may not be suitable for those with colour treated hair. I haven't dyed my hair in years so haven't had any problem personally but do be mindful of this when testing it out yourself.

I've also tried this with normal vinegar. The results are the same but the sour scent is much stronger than AVC and takes more effort to wash out.

If you have any dandruff problems that you find hard to control, give this a go. I'm sure most of us already have AVC handy in our kitchen cupboard.

So will you be giving this a try? Let me know how you go if you do.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Review: Scott Barnes Posh Blush Palette

Scott Barnes is one of those inspiring makeup artist who started life in New York as a fashion photographer and quickly moved into makeup artistry. He is famous for making J.Lo look amazing by creating the signature "lit from within" glow look.  He launched his own cosmetics lines and his items have been coveted by celebrities and fashionistas alike for their versatility and wearability from catwalk to work.

So when I recently saw a palette from him available for sale online, I was just too curious to pass it up especially since I love blush. More so when they are in any shades of pink or peach.

The Chic Palette in Posh is a trio of 3 pink hued blushes that are meant to work together to give you the sculpted look. In the pan these pinks look mightly bright and scary. Thankfully they are quite sheer in making is goof-proof so you cannot over-apply.

The contour shade is a cotton pink colour that is a little too cool on my skin. The blush colour is a medium pink with a hint of peach which is just gorgeous.

The 3rd colour is highlight is a shimmery pale pink that would serve as a great highlight for face or eyes.  Both contour and blush shade are a sheen finish and sit beautifully on the skin while the highlight colour is slightly chalky in texture and I find looks best when applied with a duo fibre brush. This blush did give me the lit from within glow when I lightly built it up using the aformentioned brush. I'm really loving the look and have been using this blush this week.

The generous pan sizes are quite large and the sleek slimline packaging makes it easy to throw into any makeup case without taking up too much space. Whilst I like all 3 colours, the cotton pink and highlight are slightly too cool on my skin and I would only use the mid-tone pinky peach blush colour with only one of the other colours on my cheeks, and not all three at once in any of my looks.

Rating: 8/10 (They would have received a higher rating if I could use all 3 colours all at once)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Hi everyone.

I've finally gotten off the lazy chair and decided to create a blog of the things I love in life.

This blog will showcase my love for all things cute and pretty so makeup, beauty products, yummy food experiences and recipes will feature heavily with the occasional pet entries to add some spice and break the monotony.

I want to share with you my experience and opinions through reviews of the products I buy and make as well as share with you the things I learned along the way. I believe the online world is built for us to share our knowledge and hope what I have to say is of value to someone out there. If what I write can help one person out, I'd be delighted and over the moon.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts as much as I love writing them. Thanks for dropping by.