Why a blog?

Somewhere to jot down all things I am passionate about.
My little space to rant, rave and ramble on about this and that.
Most of all, just to share my thoughts with the world!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Australis Megalash Mascara - Electric Blue

Hello beauties!  :-h   This post is based on my trial for Tammerly the super talented author of Spoilt beauty blog, who kindly sent me this mascara to test drive and review.  The original is linked here

When I first tried the Australis Megalash Mascara I felt quite ripped off, because it didn’t generate very noticeable results in providing that essential bit of oomph or polished lashes, I demand from my mascara, especially since my lashes are quite fair, short and straight.  :-L   I was thrilled to receive this mascara in a vibrant Electric Blue shade, because as a person who likes to explore with coloured makeup, I’m fond of brightly hued mascaras, instead of the standard black, brown or more common neutral tones.  Fortunately, despite my initial disappointment, I persisted using the mascara daily for a week, determined not to give up, then during this time, I mastered how to achieve better end results, which I will explain to you now.  #:-S

Housed in black plastic packing with hot pink lettering featuring the brand and product name, the Australis Megalash Mascara tube is large in size, with a budget price tag that promotes plenty of ‘bang for your buck’ in terms of value.  $-)  The brush is a classic design, of average size, tapering at the tip to easily separate individual lashes and reach the inner corners, coating even the finest of hairs.  The creamy, lightweight formula has a thin, runny consistency that applies with minimal fuss and no clumping.  :D  Because it’s quite fluid-like, it takes some time to totally dry, so it’s wise to keep still, without blinking too much, so to avoid smearing or transferring any product onto my skin.  *-:)  I was shattered after the initial application, because, it didn’t boost my lashes and they weren’t fuller or longer at all……until I started applying extra coats.  #-o  Due to the smooth, wet formulation, it’s buildable and therefore layers easily to present the sought after volume, for visibly plumper, longer lashes, for natural-looking appeal that’s not overboard.  ;;)  The highly pigmented colour is incredibly rich and bold, yet it’s not blatantly obvious, unless the lashes come into contact with light.  In spite of numerous layers, my lashes remain flexible and soft to touch, unlike the stiff effect some mascaras create, leaving them so hard I worry they might snap off.  The staying power is exceptional and it won’t budge all day, thanks to the waterproof, tearproof design.  My eyelashes are still fresh at the end of the day, there’s no fading, flaking, smudging or running that can lead to panda eyes, yet the mascara still washes off thoroughly with a normal cleanser, hence no need to invest in a separate waterproof eye makeup remover.  =D>

This mascara conveniently slots into my daytime makeup regime, delivering a soft, natural focus, with a striking splash of funky colour to instantly brighten my eyes.  It’s not my first choice for drama at night, as it doesn’t pack enough of a punch for my taste, although it’s ideal to layer over a lash enhancing mascara or even to use in conjunction with a decent eyelash primer for a more pronounced look.  ;)  Don’t be intimidated by how loud this blue shade appears, because it’s definitely wearable and I keep receiving complements that the flattering hue really makes my eyes ‘pop’.  To ensure your lashes get the attention they deserve, you do need to religiously apply at least two coats of mascara, remembering to ensure each coat is adequately dry before attempting any additional layers.  Whilst time consuming, this step secures the desired colour, fullness and length we expect from a mascara.  For luscious lashes that are beautifully subtle and suitable for everyday, without being too over the top, I suggest you revamp your makeup kit with an Electric Blue Australis Megalash Mascara, to inject a modern approach to your lash look.  :x

My FOTD - See bullet list for other products used.
Whilst my experience has been mostly positive, I’m awarding this little darling with 4 stars instead of 5
 (*)  (*)  (*)  (*)  because I would personally prefer if my lashes were amplified to a greater extent, making them even more exaggerated, however this mascara will be sure to impart a modest, low-key transformation.  :D

FOTD - Products Used

Do you like coloured mascaras?  :-?  Have you tried any of the Australis range and do you agree the products perform exceptionally well for such an ultra cheap, affordable brand?  What is your favourite, most effective over the counter/pharmacy/supermarket type mascara?  :-/  You know the drill, comment below  :)

The first image of the product is generic, whist the other three snap shots are my own.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

KMS Free Shape Hot Flex Spray

Yo all!  :-h   My hair is dead straight and baby fine, so normally I don’t need to rely on a straightening iron, however for special occasions or if I’m going out on the town, I use my straightener to keep my strands looking smooth, sleek and to eliminate frizz and pesky flyaways.  :-*   I do tend to blow-dry my mop quite often though, particularly in the cooler months, rather than letting it dry naturally.  Because I’ve coloured my tresses constantly for the past 20 odd years, it’s already quite fragile,  #-o  so I need to be cautious about the abuse that can occur from using heat styling products, therefore I always ensure that a heat protectant product features as a religious step in my hair care maintenance routine, guaranteeing optimal hair health.  ;)  I am also particular when it comes to choosing which product to use, as my mane is naturally oily and I don’t want to exasperate the problem with sprays or serums that leave my locks looking limp and greasy.   :-O   Finding the most suitable hair care all comes down to trial and error for me, so when Tammerly  sent me the KMS Free Shape Hot Flex Spray to trial for her beauty website Spoilt, which is linked here, I was thrilled to consent.  Here is my review:   ;;)

The KMS Free Shape Hot Flex Spray is a heat protection product, suitable for all hair types, that creates a protective barrier to insulate my locks and prevent thermal damage.  It comes in a hot pink pump-action spray bottle (I tried the mini, travel sized version) adorned with black and mint-green lettering.  I apply about three pumps of the weightless formula directly onto my towel-dried strands before heat styling and based on trial and error, that amount is sufficient to cater for my medium length mane.   I have also tried using it directly on already dried hair, which as a result becomes more obedient, while it helps to lock in the appearance of my preferred hairdo.  The indulgent, fine mist smells delightfully sweet, lingering to create a multi-sensory experience that leaves my tresses feeling refreshed and smelling delectable for hours.  @};-   As well as defending my mop against thermal assault, it safeguards from the ravages of humidity that is a constantly battle living here in the tropics.  <:-P  Whist maintaining long-lasting style, unlike a hairspray, it doesn’t provide ample hold, so there is no hard, crunchy stiffness to worry about.  #:-S   The medium resistance allows plenty of flexibility and movement, so my locks look and feel natural and soft to touch.  The spray doesn’t transfer any sticky residue or a coating of oily film; instead it’s completely non-greasy.  As a plus, I was thrilled when I discovered that by applying this product prior to heat styling, the drying time is considerably quicker than normal.  :)

Since I’ve been using the KMS Free Shape Hot Flex Spray, the softness of my hair has intensified and it’s now more manageable.  :x   It preps my hairdo to stay in place and extends the life of the style for a sleek, polished look, right up until the next wash.  By enhancing my strands with a silky smooth, ultra shiny finish that is completely relaxed, yet lightly textured, it creates the impression of increased body, promoting extra volume and plumping up my usually limp tresses.  It’s a product that simply tames my mane so styling is a breeze and the end result looks like I’ve been treated with a professional salon blow-dry.  :D  For a bit of extra oomph, it’s advised to spritz the mist into sections of the hair, which encourages maximum shaping and even better control.  Despite the weather conditions, my mop now resists frizzy flyaways, particularly in the warmer weather and I feel confident because my locks are shielded against the stress caused by frequent heat styling and environmental aggressors.  The anti-break technology reflects heat, preventing split ends and moisture loss by repairing and replenishing my hair, keeping it healthy, strong and conditioned.  B-)

I am happy with the performance of the KMS Free Shape Hot Flex Spray.  It has proven its ability to protect against thermal damage, whilst optimising the effectiveness of various heat styling tools.  It instantly transforms my dull, drab locks into perfect, frizz-free, pencil-straight tresses, with improved definition and a lustrous, glossy finish, minus any annoying build-up.  I am rating this product with 4.5 stars out of 5  (*)  (*)  (*)  (*)  & ½  (*)  because it allows me to achieve my desired look that lasts the distance, with minimal effort.   

Do you use a heat protector of some shape of form when styling your locks?  :-/  Do you prefer a multi-tasker with additional benefits and if so what would you personally look for in a heat protector product?  :-?  Share your thoughts in the comments section   :)  

The image in this post is generic.

INVISIBLE ZINC® ESP™ Environmental Skin Protector

Howdy my peeps!  :-h   I’ve been a big fan of Invisible Zinc Tinted Daywear for years and have previously claimed it as one of my Top 10 favourite beauty products.  I have fair skin and have always lived in the FNQ coastal tropics, where I was raised on the beach, knowing that Zinc offers an effective approach to sun protection.  Although unlike the days of old, as I remember the humiliation whenever my mum would paint the thick paint-like sunblock in streaks over my face (making me rather shame), wishing the ground would open up and swallow me.  :">   I had a love hate relationship with Zinc, loved that I never got burnt when wearing Zinc, but hated its thick, gluggy texture and obvious appearance.   ~X(   However, like many of Aussies, I too followed the iconic eighties trend of exhibiting florescent zinc stripes across my nose and cheeks , OMG what were we thinking, LOL!   L-)  :))  At the end of the era, I forgot about Zinc, as it wasn’t particularly appealing to me as a teen or when I was in my early twenties.  Then, years later, when I was introduced to Invisible Zinc and was able to determine that the Zinc sunscreens of the past were finally reformulated, with the zinc particles becoming micro-fine to provide a reflective barrier on the skin’s surface, which was inconspicuous to the naked eye, yet still capable of effectively shielding against damaging UV rays.  \:D/  I’ve always wanted to try the Invisible Zinc Environmental Skin Protector, but had never had the chance, so when Tammerly from Spoilt sent it out for me to test drive, I couldn’t wait for it to arrive.  Here are my thoughts:

Invisible Zinc Environmental Skin Protector comes in an innovative airless pump-action canister with a clip-shut lid that seals tightly, guaranteeing the purity of the formulation by preventing contamination.  The packaging, available in both 30 and 50ml sizes, is designed featuring the distinguishable Invisible Zinc logo with overt black, white and yellow print.  The sturdy pump allows easy distribution and one press allocates a pea-sized amount of the smooth, white, thickly textured cream, which surprisingly, is a much thinner consistency than it initially appears.  #:-S   This supplies enough cream for my whole face, so I only need to pump twice when extending the product to my neck and décolleté.  The fragrance is subtle with a delicate aroma, nothing like a typical sunscreen scent and becomes non-existent anyway, once transferred to the skin.  The lotion blends and spreads easily with my fingertips, then once applied, absorbs rapidly, without any tacky remnants.  The outcome is a perfectly comfortable, remarkably lightweight veil that creates a faint white cast and a slight surface shine, but thankfully, even though my skin is super oily, the finish is non-greasy and doesn’t cause an oil slick on my face.  :)  Instead, the semi-matte effect is extremely appealing, especially prior to my daily makeup ritual, acting like a primer, by forming an adhesive base that’s not sticky to touch, nevertheless entices cosmetics to grip and hold on like glue, improving the general staying power and keeping excess oil at bay.  <:-P

Not only is the Invisible Zinc Environmental Skin Protector an exceptional broad spectrum sunblock, safeguarding against dangerous UVA + UVB rays, the multi-tasking, anti-ageing product, includes essential moisturising properties to nourish and condition, along with an anti-pollution barrier, which prevents the skin against future assault from damaging environmental aggressors.  ;)  I don’t need a separate moisturiser, but the formula may not be hydrating enough for those with drier skin types, a factor obviously dependant on personal preferences or determined by trial and error.  I’ve not suffered any sensitivity issues since incorporating this sunscreen into my daily regime; although unfortunately it’s sparked the arrival of a few unsightly pimples.  I’m not sure if the cream is clogging my pores or if a particular ingredient may be triggering the breakouts, as a full ingredient list isn’t disclosed on the packaging or anywhere on the company website for that matter, making the origin difficult to pinpoint.   :-/

I’m impressed with the level of cover this broad spectrum sunblock provides, considering I’ve not once been burnt, even with direct exposure, during the time I’ve worn the SPF 30+ cream on a daily basis.  I usually have trouble finding suitable sun care options, on account of most chemical versions provoking my oily skin to go crazy, so to date, mineral Zinc remains my ingredient of choice, because I prefer the physical protection and skin health benefits associated with Zinc.  Despite the pesky spots I’ve been sporting lately, I like the finish and longevity the Invisible Zinc Environmental Skin Protector delivers and I’m confident in the overall performance.  It’s satisfying to be armed with the best weapon to block UV rays, whilst preventing further damage and the onset of any visible signs of ageing.  Sunscreen is the most important and relevant anti-ageing skin care product and the ultimate defence in the fight against premature ageing.  =D>

I’m rating the Invisible Zinc Environmental Skin Protector with 3.5 stars out of 5!  (*)  (*)  (*)  &  ½  (*)  Deducting ½ a star because of the unwanted pimples I’ve developed and 1 star as a result of the concealed ingredients and lack of product information available to consumers.  This prompted my own online research to determine what this sunscreen is made up of and based on my findings I feel the need to point out, while the company claims there are No Chemical Sunfilters and it’s promoted as The sunscreen Mother Nature would wear but, if there are no ‘nasties’ on board, then why not reveal the entire contents, so we all know ‘exactly’ what we are putting on our skin?  :-?

TIP:  *-:)   This product is somewhat stubborn to remove (which is a good thing coz I know it’s not going to budge or slide off during the heat of the day) and a normal cleanser doesn’t have quite enough oomph.  I always implement the double cleansing method, using an oil based pre-cleanser (I like jojoba) first, followed by an AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acid) deep pore cleanser to ensure every last trace of sunscreen is gone and my skin is totally clean.  

What is your preferred form of sun protection?  Chemical or Physical?  Do you like Zinc and have you tried Invisible Zinc products before?  :-?  Any suggestions for alternative Zinc based sun protection that you have tried and can recommend?  :-/  I would love to try out different physical sunscreens as I’m still on the search for my holy grail, so please hit me with any ideas you might have  :)

The images in this post are generic.