Saturday, 27 September 2014

Beautydeals: Cultbeauty, Pai Skincare & Rouge Bunny Rouge

It's a wallet-tempting weekend with some fab beautydeals going on.

Cultbeauty has a goodiebag GWP when buying more than £75. 

Always wanted to try that specific Rouge Bunny Rouge eyeshadow: they have 30% off on almost every kind: 

Pai Skincare is launching 2 new serums and you will get a travelset when buying either serum:

Happy weekend!

Friday, 26 September 2014

Shades of Shader: Surrat Blush artistique in Grisaille 10

Let's talk working horses today...

I've gotten myself a new shader after shading happily for 2 years with Burberry Earthy. It happened in the field of "It's not you, it's me" and "I want to try out new things".

I had been tempted for a while by Surratt's makeup-line. I've seen several reviews of the gorgeously neutral Grisaille online. Perhaps neutral shader's are not the most exiting part of makeup but for me they are one of the more essential parts:
  •  I consider myself quite vain
  • my nose is not so small
  • However, I don't like the idea of plastic surgery involving hacking into bones
 -> good ol' makeuptrick: the shader!

I only had 2 types yet (older review here): Burberry Earthy & Illamasqua Disobey. I liked both but only went for Burberry Earthy later as it is glowier. The only thing about Burberry blush is the strong rose fragance. There are de-scenting methods by using charcoal (see DrivelbyFrivol about it) but I haven't been bothered. I'd rather try something new, especially after the superenabling GWP that Liberty had on.

I'm still going to compare the three of them.

Gathering of the pans:

At first sight I can seee Burberry being the warmest one leaning towards brown. Illamastqua looks ashier and slightly deeper. Surrat looks the most neutral and even slightly cool.

Swatches: (3 swipes of blush over Lunasol Cream foundation OC20)

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Oh, what a difference! In the first place I notice Illamasqua having a weird grey cast I have not noticed before. It seems it oxidises quickly: perhaps it"s expired.

Burberry & Surrat both have a gorgeous soft glow that mimics healthy skin. I consider the microglow particles to be similar (for closeup, click photos).

Burberry is a tad warmer than Surratt. I think it still qualifies as a blush and it looks stunning on redheads (see here). In that case I think someone should be really cool-toned to make Surrat Grisaille look like a blush. Surratt Grisaille is a real shader colour in terms of neutral undertone. Is it a real taupe? I think so. One coat is light enough for the lightest skintones: it builds up to a good deeper tone that will shade up to N 35 skin.

Best of all: Surratt is scentless! The texture reminds of of the luxurious Japanese brands like Three and (from memory swatching) Suqqu blush:

I mean, look at the picture above. It's so smooth and the shimmer is so delicate and neutral (a platinum colour? not sure).

It stays on for 8 hours & more on prepped (primer/foundation) skin and does not oxidise. It fades evenly after 10 hours.

Conclusion: one of the better purchases of the last months and a classic in the making.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Liberty's Mother of GWP's

Promises, promises, but this actually seems like it!

The promise had been a goodiebag worthy of a whopping £300 when purchasing £150 in Liberty's beauty section. Well well, most of us know the sample sizes when being lured into this deal (think Sephora's valuesets). However....

I'd say this is a whopping set of really large goodies. I think I moaned more "OMG OMG"s than the last opportunity I should have uttered that. After overcoming post-shopping extasy effect I finally can show you some:

total package: the washbag/toiletbag is so gorgeous already
Coupons for the Hairlab: if I end up in London before '15

I will spare you the total list of what's inside because this GWP is not online anymore (still in store):
The hottest items:
  • Nars lippencil in Rikugien (mini)
  • Hourglass Femme Rouge lipstick in Grace
  • Opi nailpolish in My Dogsled is a Hybrid (full size)
  • Trish McEvoy Instant Eyelift
  •  Shu Uemura AntiOx Skin Purifying cleansing oil
  • Omorovzica Cleansing Foam 30ml
  • Sisley Eau Efficace Gentle Makeup remover
  • Chantecaille faux Cils mini-mascara

It was easy to reach the desired amount as I've been seriously desiring some items from the Surratt line. And also the necessary serum and I've been set. Oh, I kind of added a Ionic toothbrush to reach the total amount: 

I probably wouldn't if not for reaching the amount but the Bichotan toothbrush claims to have a cleansing effect by adding negative ions in your mouth. I know this concept with my blowdryer so why not get my saliva extra healthy, right?

I'm looking forward reviewing my 1st Surrat item soon!

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Eye Prime me up: Kanebo Kate Lash Maximizer Black vs Diorshow Maximizer lash Plumping Serum

Out with the new, in with the newer! 

 That might sum up the review I will bring about on 3 eyelash primers. There's actually an old one too, but it performs similarly as the newer, only in a different colour.

For reviewing sake let me introduce: Kanebo Kate Mascara Base, Kanebo Kate Lash Maximizer Black & Dior Diorshow Lash Plumping Serum.

Starting with 'old': Kanebo Kate Eyelash Base. It has been on the market for more than 6 years. Eyelash primers have only taken a more prominent role on the Western market recently but they have been favourite tools among Asian lash-afficionados for a longer time. I only know it for about 6 years but it has been a miracle tool for keeping my curl and having made-up lashes.

Recently Kate introduced a newer version of the lashbase that I reviewed here. I picked the white version that I used up quite efficiently. Afterwards I went for the rave-reviewed Western Diorshow Lash Maximizer.

Though lovingly moisturizing for my lashes, it did not keep my eyelashcurler-primed lashes into a decent curl.

Thus out with the with the newer:

Comparing the different brushes & colour of the primer:

My oldest version of Kanebo Kate Lash Base comes with a straight but soft-haired brush. The formula is supposed to be totally white, but sometimes I transfer the black of the tightliner into the tube again. I do clean up my brush after priming by removing everything with a tissue, but sometimes a tiny bit of black eyepencil stays on and it turns into a greyish mass. That's also a reason I replace eyeprimers oftenly, for hygienic reason.

As said in the earlier review: I love how it performs. Length & keeps the curl in it's form. The only thing is that you have to coat every lash with mascara afterwards to stop the white base from appearing. 

That's when the newer version Kate Lash Maximizer in Black makes such a fantastic primer: you can either plump up your lashes with extra mascara or keep the coat for as it is.

Kate Lash Maximizer Black has a sparse amount of fibres included. They are fewer than in the white version of the Lash Maximizer's series. That might be a relief for people not liking over-fibre-ish bases.
As for the black colour: it appears rather glossy on the eyelashes. Perhaps not the blackest of black but I do think it appears in the truest colour most mascara brands would market they colour 'black'. Only few brands like Hourglass Film Noir make an inky black glossy version that almost glistens from your eyelashes; the rest somewhat varies in colour and gloss factor.

The brush is a classic, slightly bend one with synthetic but bendable hairs. The formula holds up really long: I'd say it hold like a waterproof version. At least, the base survives a shower whereas the 'topping' mascara on top lovingly merges on my cheeks. So I suggest a good waterproof mascara cleanser for removing every trace.

Which brings me why Diorshow was not really into my alley: I already mentioned the formula not lenghtening my lashes enough, nor keeping my curl in place. Then there's the brush:
Brushes are a matter of taste and perhaps of the type of eyelashes you have. I never really liked the plastic brushes with their short but stiff ends. That is precisely the type of brush on the Diorshow Lash serum.

On the positive side: it removes a lot easier than Kate's formula. I guess that makes it perfect for lashes that are easier to be curled/already curly. 

I cannot say too much about the lash-serum effect. I've used it too sporadically to notice a difference.

Conclusion: I prefer the cheaper & more effective Kanebo Kate and love the new black version of it.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Beauty Newbies

Weather is still nicely summery even if it's getting closer to Autumn. I still felt like grabbing some autumn-like purchases: 

1. You have probably seen Rouge Bunny Rouge's latest Chronos palette on all the grande beautyblogs. Me too, so when my fave high-cover foundation of '14 (see here) was on sale, I added this palette for beauty's sake. 

2. I've already started sampling some new oils for when Autumn weather will appear. I've been reading plenty about YÜLI Skincare: SpiritBeautyLounge has a sampling service which makes it affordable to try out. 

3. Candles: How Autumn/Winter they are to me. I still picked out the tropically Gardenia based 'Je t'aime Jane' from Bella Freud's line. I mean, my blog is called 'Birkinbagbeauty' because I love Jane Birkin so I couldn't resist a candle in her homage.

4. Chanel quad in Poésie: The national beautystores have 25% off on eyeshadows and this L.E Chanel was finally in stock. It's described as a set of the most effortless neutrals by most beautyblogs: Probably dupable but still highly chanel and supereasy on undecided mornings of 'how to dress the eyes'.

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Makeup Forever Artist Shadow in Crystalline Gray Beige ( D552)

*Makeup Forever's new color-shadows popped up at Sephora's website -> curiosity triggered*

There are so many new ones [210], and the Makeupartist in the video were raving about aalllll colours.
I picked one that looked rather like a neutral taupe online: Crystalline Gray Beige:
It's a shade with the promise of a Diamond lustre: Diamond people! I had Rihanna chanting in the back of my mind...'Shine bright lika a diamond...'

There are also eyeshadows in satin, matte, idirescent & Metallic. However, I thought it would be nice to see MUFE's translation of a diamond lustre.
The eyeshadows are sold in separate pans. You can either muster up your own palette, or buy the MUFE version of 2, 3 or more. There was a good deal for the palette version so I chose that option:
 The case is plastic, but the sturdy type in MUFE's signature sleekness. The pallets have magnet adherence so you can take out your pan whenever you want. This is handy for travellers and makeupartists or aspiring colourists who like to vary their colours on daily/weekly basis.

 Talking about the size of the pan: it's the same as Le Metier de Beaute eyeshadow pans:
That got me into comparing mode again. Hence, I also picked up my cheaper brand Makeup Artist palette in Undress Me too.

Ofcourse, those are baby pans compared to big-sized MUFE & LMDB, but the colour-family of one of them is quite similar: a mauve-ish silver Taupe.

This swatch is made in daylight/indirect sun, foundation base but no specific eye primer. The Le Metier de Beaute palette is Bauhaus in colour Graphite (review here). 
  • MUFE is the warmest of the 3: a reddish mauve base
  • Le Metier de Beaute has the best opacity
  • The diamond aspect of MUFE is slightly dissapointing: all 3 have similar lustre on skin
I have not been as enthousiastic about the eyeshadow as the makeupartists in the video. Honestly, I'm spoiled with Le Metier de Beaute and others, but I think that a budget eyeshadow like Makeup Artist wears just as well.
However, I think it's a wonderful neutral, office-appropriate sparkle that will cooperate well with Edward Bess eyeprimer. And I will add another shadow of MUFE's Artist collection in a different finish to complete the duo-palette.

Usefully pretty, but not a musthave if you have similar hues.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

August's Empties

August has been a month of buying plenty newbies - finishing few = just 13 finished ups... 
1. Seacret Body scrub:
This scrub is from those Dead-sea companies that are in larger capitals around Europe: they stop people on the street by scrubbing their hands and coaching them inside their shop. I usually avoid them because their products are basically overpriced, but I caved for a scrub because it would do "miracles" on problem skin. It is a nice firm scrub on a mixed base of oil. Nice: yes; worth the price: nope, a DIY dead sea salt scrub would be less perfumed (only if you want to) and just as effective.

2. Kora Organics (by Miranda Kerr) facial spray
So I caved for the hype and Miranda's promise of 'skins as good as hers'. Yeh, I'm too old to believe but like Lourdes' water: you can always try. The spray smells a bit musty imo, some herbal component is quite present. I haven't seen any dramatic result using it. Verdict: overpriced & overhyped.

3. Givenchy Mr. Light concealer in Mr. Macaroon 
I love this concealer and I've been alternating Mr. Toast (3) & Mr. Macaroon (4) depending on my level of selftan. It's my 3rd tube and its one of the better undereye concealers out there. It covers without getting caky; it refects light without going discoball. Repurchase: Absolutely, though I bought Charlotte Tilbury because my colour was sold out (love hers too)

4. Kiss Me Heavy Rotation Long Volume Dynamic Mascara & Max Factor Wild Mega volume
Both were nice but neither I will repurchase. Kiss Me keeps the curl and thickens a bit, but has the tendency to clump as well. Max Factor needs a lot of primer to keep any curl or have a good effect.

5. Flormar Rotating Macara
Wow, so handy! A mascara that has a rotating brush that can go in both directions. I really liked the formula that was thin and never clogging. I'm keeping the brush to use with other mascaras until the battery runs out.

6. Merumaya Skin Brightening Exfoliating Peel
A wonderful chemical peel that exfoliates skin without overstripping: think REN Glycolactic Renewal Mask only slightly more herbally fraganced. I was not a fan of her eyecream but this one is really nice & effective.

7. Zoya Nailpolish Savita & Essie Wicked
A case of 'bottles in sunlight' that changed the texture. I like both colours: Savita is a matte purple that looks velvety on and Essie Wicked it that blood dried classic hue.

8. Trevarno TCL cream
Organically harvested in the UK. Their products are delightfully affordable with some potent ingredients. TLC says it all: when skin is being oversensitive. It smells like a herbal garden. I love that it's a cream instead of a balm. It soothes, but not the complete miracle.

9. Collistar Selftan Face magic drops
This selftan does not need an introduction on my blog anymore because I adore it (review here). 

10. Konjac sponge
I got this one in a complete set from Lovelula. I have used it every now and then and it feels quite neutral and effective.

11. Weleda Iris daycream
This was also a gift with purchase and it's a big surprise: I love the thin, slightly neutral consistency that layers beautifully over serums. It smells like a light flower: Iris ofcourse. Repurchase: yes, as it's affordable, agrees well with my skin and is wonderful for summer.

12. African Botanics Marula oil Neroli infused 
I got this sample from my facialist in Amsterdam. I went there for a Marie Veronique Organics facial and was surprised that this hard-to-get brand was one of her working brands. It's a really thick oil and moisturizes quite heavily: I think I'd prefer it for winter.

13.  BioNike Defence XAge Serum
An Anti-age serum suitable for very sensitive skin. I bought it in Italy as part of a travelset. This serum would be ideal for long-distance flights: soothing, anti-ageing and moisturizing.