September 30, 2011

Don't get your "Knickers in a Knot", it's by Australis!

Ah don't you just love Aussie slang... when I first moved to Australia at the age of 12, not only did I not speak any English, let alone speak any Australian English! So a phrase like this would never have made sense to me. 

"Don't get your knickers in a knot, crack a tinnie and bob's yer uncle."

Huh???? My uncle's name is not Bob, my knickers aren't knotted up thank you, and crack a what? Well luckily the 33 year old me can decipher that sentence, which even though sounds English, doesn't make sense at all! Want to find out what it actually means? I'll tell you, only after I show you some pretty pics.

This post isn't about Aussie slang, this post is about a nail polish from the dinky-di (yep, another  slang... means genuine) Aussie brand called Australis and it's named "Knickers in a Knot". Ahhh... that's where the connection is you're probably thinking.

This nailpolish was in one of my goody bags I got at the Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend (Posted about HERE and sneak peek of the bags given HERE).
Soft flash

I got fully opaque coverage with just 2 coats. I normally use a top coat over it, but I forgot this time, so the polish lasted me 2 days before starting to crack around the sides. With top coat I usually get around 4 days of wear with my polishes.

The colour is a wonderful watermelon red colour, and I know I'll be sporting it on my nails and toes all summer. And the best part about it? It's only $7.95.
Natural light

So what does that sentence mean? The one at the start of this post? It means..."Don't upset yourself, open a can of cold beer and everything will be fine" 

Have you tried Australis polishes? What colours are you loving now?

Disclaimer: this product was given to me free at the ABBW.

September 29, 2011

Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend 2011 - it's a wrap!

Last weekend was one of those ones that will remain with me forever. It was the inaugral Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend (ABBW) organised by Kimmi from The Plastic Diaries and Jacie from You've got Nail.

The weekend had many many sponsors, and included many many goody bags. I will not be blogging about every single item in the goody bags because otherwise I'll probably be here until 2014 still reviewing! But as I use the products I'll start to blog my thoughts on the standout items. However if you're really interested in knowing what's inside the goody bags, at the end of this post I have provided links to other blogs where you can see them.

Pre - Registration
On the Friday evening before the start of the ABBW the husband and I decided to go to dinner at Darling Harbour, and it just so happened that the pre-registrations were taking place at Novotel Hotel in Darling Harbour? Coincidence? Or a very well made plan by yours truly?

At registration I was handed 2 massive bags and a gift box which included goodies from Dove, Le Tan, Innoxa, Australis and Garnier. A sign of things to comne. Cue paparazzi shot with the husband and my goody bags.
Image taken by Liz Giacco for The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend, and are not to be reproduced, republished or reused without inclusion of this credit. Images remain the property of The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend.

Day 1 Events
IMATS - I've already written about my IMATS haul which you can read about HERE.

Beauty Directory Event 
This was the highlight for me, where the BD managing director Jackie Maxted gave us her top tips for bloggers on working with PRs. She was just so down to earth, and her advice was so practical that you were left wondering "of course! why didn't I think of that". We were then given  chance to ask questions from a panel of experts including Jackie, Eleanor Pendleton (beauty editor for Instyle mag, who is absolutely stunning and glowy!) and our very own Kimmi from The Plastic Diaries.
Jackie from Beauty Directory and Eleanor from In Style

Gala Dinner at the Establishment hosted by Maxted Thomas 
Before starting the dinner we were given the chance to mingle with representatives from Nivea, Orly, Coty, Burts Bees, Remington and Sebastian Professional. My favourite part was spending time with the Nivea girls getting my skin properly diagnosed (dry/combination) and given appropriate products for my skin.
Some of the products showcased at the Maxted Thomas Event
I also got a chance to chat some more with Jackie from BD about one of my favourite topics, the crazy prices of cosmetics in Australia and why we resort to buying online. Sorry Jackie if I chewed your ear off!

I loved catching up with other bloggers. 
Me, Jen from My Funny Valentine and Anni from Haute And Stylish
Me and Paula from The Concealer
Image taken by Liz Giacco for The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend, and are not to be reproduced, republished or reused without inclusion of this credit. Images remain the property of The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend.

The dinner was absolutely delicious, and just look at that dessert!

Day 2 Events
Alpha H breakfast event
Here is the tweet that I sent during this event.

And seriously, they are the nicest people I have ever met who are incredibly passionate about their product. At this event they launched their Liquid Gold Skin Perfecting System and we were each given a 3 month supply to trial. I've already started trialling my Liquid Gold range, so I will blog about it after I've used it long enough to give an informed opinion. 

Face of Australia Masterclass
At this event the gorgeous Tina from FOA (who also happens to have her own blog, Chasing Elixir), led us through a makeup masterclass, giving us a chance to play with makeup and experiment on with the looks that Kirsty Dolores the MUA was doing.

Key Note Speaker
The key note spaker was RESCU founder and editor Bahar Etminan who gave a somewhat controversial talk about the business of beauty blogging and how to be a professional blogger.

Marusya from Crashing Red has done a fantastic summary of Bahar's talk in her post Blogging for Love or Money.

And that wraps up my weekend, the best part of which was a chance to catch up with other beauty bloggers in person. Kimmi and Jacie did a fantastic job of organising everything, and if they happen to organise one for next year I will be the first to put my name down for it.

If you still want more information about the ABBW, a list of blog mentions about the ABBW can be found HERE some of which also show you each of the products in the goody bags.

Where you at IMATS or ABBW? What are your thoughts on it? If you attended and have done a post on it link me in the comments.

September 27, 2011

Top 5 Tuesday - "Look At Me" lipsticks

It's no secret that I love lipsticks. It's hard to believe that only a year ago I owned maybe 3 lipsticks, and they were all Nude, Nude and Nude. But then I started this blog, got a bit more adventurous with my lipsticks, and now if I wear Nude lips I feel... well... nude! My lipsticks of choice now are ones that scream "Drop everything, look at me!"

Here are my top 5 "Look at Me" lipsticks.

They are, in no particular order:
  • MAC "Impassioned"
  • Chi Chi Viva La Diva "Fashion Police"
  • YSL #11 "Rose Culte"
  • Covergirl "Spellbound"
  • MAC "Up The Amp"

MAC Impassioned
This is my all time favourite lipstick, all time! That's a long time. I've blogged about it many times before, the colour is a warm watermelon pink which is perfect for a statement lip. Click HERE for a FOTD with Impassioned. 

Chi Chi Viva La Diva Fashion Police
This is from Australian brand Chi Chi, and is a slightly lighter, more coral version of Impassioned. Is it any wonder I love it? It is a matte formula, but not at all drying. Love. HERE is a FOTD with it.

YSL Rouge Volupte #11 Rose Culte
This was my first YSL lipstick, and the formula is just to die for. It's possibly the creamiest lipstick I own. I don't wear this too often, as even for me this is a bit too out there. But it's a gorgeous colour that I can't part with. HERE is a FOTD with it.

Covergirl Lip Perfection in Spellbound
This is possible the most wearable of my "Look at Me" lipsticks, as the colour is somewhat sheer in comparison to the others mentioned here. It's a cool toned fuchsia pink, that's perfect for spring. HERE is the full review and a mini FOTD.

MAC Up The Amp
This is a perfect autumn colour, and looks good with minimal eye makeup. It's a dark purple shade which is surprisingly wearable, although on days when I feel this is a bit too goth for me I lighten it up with a bit of concealer. HERE is a full review and FOTD with it.

What are some of your "Look At Me" lipsticks? Or are you a Nude lips girl?

September 26, 2011

My IMATS haul and other bits and bobs

This past weekend I attended the International Makeup Artists Trade show in Sydney's Darling Harbour (I first wrote about it here), which was part of the Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend. More on the ABBW later... it was just so full on (in a good way) that I still need to get my thoughts together before I can put it in a post.

But for now, here's what I bought at IMATS, some at absolutely bargain prices. All up I'm quite happy with my purchases at IMATS, I don't think I went too nuts and overspent. I mainly bought things I hadn't tried before or needed them, or were such a good bargain I just couldn't pass them up.

Illamasqua blush in Disobey, eyeshadow in Jules and intense lipgloss in Frenzy
This was the first time Illamasqua was at the show, so they only had a small stand. They didn't have the full range, just a few key pieces, but at 75% off those products at the show how could I resist? The blush ($15 at the show) seems like a perfect colour for contouring. The eyeshadow ($10 at the show) is a matte brown shade so I plan on using on my brows, and the lipgloss ($15 at the show) is such a "me" colour that I couldn't leave it there.

Make Up For Ever High Definition Foundation #120
I'm really looking forward to trying this one, because I've read so many good things about this foundaton before. MUFE is only sold at one shop in all of Australia (as far as I know), and it's nowhere near where I live. So this was definitely a brand I was looking forward to trying. I paid $42 for this at the show, but I think the normal price is $59aud.

SpaRitual Nailpolishes in Thunder Road and Dreamsicle
I've never tried Spa Ritual polishes, mainly because I don't know of any stores that sell them here besides their online AU store. They were $11.95 at the show, or $19.95 on their website.

Gorgeous Cosmetics Lipstick in Angel
Another brand that I haven't tried before, as I find them quite pricey and not knowing much about them I don't want to spend all that money on their products. Yes, I know that I don't need yet another bright pinky coral lipstick, but it was down to $15 from their usual $35 so of course I couldn't pass it up!

Royal & Langnickel travel brush set
This looked like too good a deal to pass up, $25 for 13 brushes which come in this hot pink travel pouch. I haven't tried these yet, so I'm hoping these are good quality.

The gifts
Because I was part of the ABBW crew, we were all given a Royal & Langnickel Silk Pro Greenline Eco Friendly 12 piece brush set. There was also a lucky dip prize for us at SLA Makeup, and I got a sparkly shimmer powder roll on.

I'll leave you now with a collage of pics I took at IMATS and a sneak peek at the goody bags we were given by all the fabulous sponsors of the ABBW2011.
IMATS Sydney 2011 Darling Harbour

The goody bags from ABBW... we were so spoilt, so very very spoilt.

Did you go to IMATS this year? Have you tried any of the products that I've bought?

September 25, 2011

Showing some Blog Lovin' to new discoveries and BFF Link Love

If you follow me on Twitter you might have seen my tweets linking to #ABBW2011 which is the hashtag for The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend. The last few days I was at the ABBW (which was awesome, I will blog about it later), so I haven't had a chance to do much blogging. That's why instead today I'll be sharing with you some of my newly discovered blogs that I'm really loving.

The blogs I'm talking about today aren't new by any means, but they're ones that I have only recently discovered. I must have been sleeping under a rock. Worth checking out! You won't regret it.

Arianne's blog is fabulous, she's fabulous! 
And she loves bright lipsticks! Need I say more? I love blogs where the blogger's personality shines through, and Arianne comes through as the type of girl you want to be BFFs with.

Seriously, I must have been sleeping under a rock because Cynthia's blog has been around for a long time. She does amazing tutorials, such as how to get thicker lashes in 4 easy steps, and great product reviews.

Ebony is hilarious, except for the mummy bit I can totally relate to her, such as when she gets the guilts at buying too much makeup. This is more of a lifestyle blog, a little bit of cooking, a little bit of rambling and a whole lotta makeup obsessions. Here's another girl that you want to be BFFs with.

And let's not forget the posts from the B.F.F Network

Tammerly at Pink Diva Beauty falls in love with L'OCCITANE's Almond and Apple Sweet Peel... it smells so good you will want to eat it!

Angie from An Obsession With the Fabulous shares her thoughts on Fergie's new fragrance, Outspoken by Fergie. Is it worth the dosh?

Dr. Naomi shares with us a fabulous new body procedure called Thread Lifting. Learn about this technique and its benefits.

Anni from Haute and Stylish gives you a glimpse into the awesome (and kind of crazy) Brisbane release of Illamasqua's Theatre of the Nameless collection!

And last but by no ways least I'd like to thank Holly from Miss Holly for passing me a blog award.

I hope you discovered some new blogs today! Normal blogging will resume shortly.

September 23, 2011

Models Prefer - Lips & Nails

You might remember a few weeks ago I was sent a lovely package of Models Prefer goodies (posted here). Today I'll be showing you the lip and nail products I was sent.

Ultra Lipgloss Pencil in Cocktail Hour
I'd never before used a lipgloss pencil, and didn't know what to expect. It glided on really smoothly, almost like a really really creamy lipstick but in pencil form. The coverage however was more like a gloss, semi opaque. My favourite way to wear this is blotted, to give it a stained appearance.

Lipstick in Vintage Drop
This is a gorgeous deep red, almost wine, colour. I think the name, Vintage Drop, is very appropriate. I haven't been game enough to wear this out yet as I feel it makes me look too dressed up, and I haven't had the need to be that dressed up lately. So I'll be keeping this for a suitable dressy occassion to wear to, as it's a really striking colour.

Nail polish in Role Play
I'd seen this colour at Priceline but never been game to try it as I thought it might look too dark on the nails, but once applied I really love the bluey/teal colour you get. And from what I can tell, it looks to be a pretty close colour to Chanel's Blue Boy nailpolish (check it out on Karen's blog here). My only issue with this polish is that it went gluggy after the 2nd time I used it. This didn't happen with the next polish I'm about to show.

Nail polish in Show Off
This is a really bright orange colour which will be perfect in summer. I think it would look especially fabulous worn on the toes with some nice gold sandals. Unlike the colour above, this one applied really smoothly and didn't go gluggy at all.

Overall thoughts on the range
My first experience with this range was when I bought an eyeshadow duo and a liquid liner from them a while back, and I was extremely impressed with the quality. All the other products I have tried since have cemented my high opinion of the range. Majority of the items are less than $15 AUD, with the blushes, bronzers and highlighters (reviewed HERE) less than $10AUD. They are great quality products at an affordable price.

Have you tried anything from Models Prefer yet?

September 22, 2011

Clarins Instant Definition Mascara Gives Me Mega Huge Lashes

I admit, Clarins isn't generally a brand I often buy from. I get swayed by the funkier, more glamorous Illamasquas and MACs out there, and go right past the Clarins counters without a second glance.

Which is a shame, because there are probably lots of gems out there waiting to be discovered, one of which is this Instant Definition Mascara in Intense Black.

This was sent to my by Adore Beauty and I think they may have converted me over to Clarins with this one mascara. Yep, it's THAT good.

My favourite part is the wand with it's precision definition tip. Have a look at the picture below, the tip is slightly longer and thinner, which makes it very easy to get to the corner lashes. After using mascaras with thick wands (e.g. MF False Lash, CG LashBlast), it's so refreshing to be using this type of a wand.

If you've read my blog for any length of time then you'll know I like drag queen mega lashes. Well this mascara gives you that, and more. Normally I do 3 coats of mascara to get the same effect that I get with this mascara in just 2 coats.

And best of all, this mascara does not go crunchy at all on your lashes, nor have any flakiness.  Even at the end of the day my mascara still looks fresh.

  • Makes lashes HUGE
  • Innovative wand makes it easy to get to the corner lashes
  • The colour is a deep jet black, none of that dull charcoal that some blacks can turn into
  • Doesn't make lashes crunchy

  • Price. It is AUD $42, which I suppose is not bad when you compare them to the Lancome and Dior prices, but it is definitely more than what I usually pay. 

    If you want super thick and defined lashes, this is the mascara for you. I will definitely be purchasing this, but maybe instead of using it everyday I'll save it for special occasions.

    On another note, Adore Beauty is doing a Budgeting For Beauty survey and if you do the survey, which is a simple 3 question thing, there is a little surprise at the end. Hint (it may be a discount code...sshhhh), so if you'd like to take part in the survey click HERE. You have until 10 October 2011 to do it.

    Disclaimer - provided by Adore Beauty for review purposes. I do not get paid to write reviews. My views on this product are honest, and let's be realistic, you only need to look at the pics to see how good this mascara is!

    Have you tried any makeup from Clarins? Are you also like me, ignoring this fabulous brand for the funkier brands out there?

    September 20, 2011

    Top 5 Tuesday - Pink blushes

    I'm starting a new weekly series, Top 5 Tuesday, where each Tuesday I'll post about whatever Top 5 is on my mind that week. I'm pretty sure I saw the idea on another blog, but I read so many blogs I don't know where I saw it! So if this idea is from your blog, let me know and I'll credit you asap!

    I go through phases with makeup, sometimes I'm obsessed with lipsticks, sometimes eyeshadows, and sometimes blushes. Lately I've been loving pink blushes.

    Nars "Desire"
    A very bright and pigmented blush. This looks scary in the pan, but if used lightly it gives a healthy pink glow to the face. HERE is the full review.

    Illamasqua "Hussy"
    This is a warm toned pink, perfect with a (fake) tan. When I wear this it looks like I've just been out for a jog (ha!) with that lit from within pink glow. Full review HERE.

    Tarte "Dollface"
    This has been featuring on my blog a lot lately, not suprising, as this is a perfect cool toned pale pink which looks great in winter. I think in summer this might be too pale for me, but in the meantime I'll get as much wear out of this now as I can. Full review HERE.

    LA Colors Mineral Blush "Just Peachy" 
    This is a cheapie US drugstore brand that I'd picked up from a discount cosmetics store near my work for around $4.95. Even though the colour says Peachy, to me it's more pink than peach. It has slight shimmer, and it's great for a pink summer cheek.

    W7 Blush "Baby Pink" 
    Another drugstore cheapie. I bought this one from that same discount cosmetics store as the LA Colors one (Cosmo Cosmetics in Parramatta for those playing at home). Similar to Tarte "Dollface" this is a winter pink for me. It has a slight shimmer, and makes my cheeks look doll like.

    And now to the swatches in various lighting conditions.
    Daylight, no flash

    Daylight, flash
    Indoors, flash

    What are some of your favourite pink blushes?


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