Flawless Base: Current Fave Combinations!

Flawless Base: Current Fave Combinations!

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Hi hi, in this entry, I will share with you most of the products I am using in my foundation/ bases routine.  In the past few months I have managed to finish up quite a few of my fave base products, and I have since moved on to some new and not so new base products, so I thought it would be useful to do a round-up of everything.  Before we start, I thought I would start with a few useful pointers –

  1. The awesome foundations/ bases I have used up are: NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint, IT Cosmetics Your Skin but Better CC Cream, and I am on the last few uses of Shiseido Synchro Skin Fluid Foundation
  2. Everything I mentioned here can be mixed and matched depending on the amount of coverage, sun protection, type of finish that I want.  This is important to note, because on a daily basis, I just reach for whichever I can, especially when it comes to the setting powders and concealers.
  3. I have relatively clear skin  and I just need something to even out my overall skintone. I also have normal skin, with a slightly oily T-zone. With that said, I realise that whenever I said something is long lasting on me might not be the case for everyone – so if you have oilier skin than me, you probably should use your fave makeup primer to make your foundation last on you.  I usually test and wear all my foundations without primers/ bases as over the years I find that I don’t need to use a primer anymore — unless it is for SPF or to add more glow to my skin, but not to enhance the longevity of a foundation.
  4. Everything I use and mentioned will be clearly listed below for your reference, because throughout the entry, I will only be on ‘first name’ basis with the products for brevity’s sake.

So I will share with you two main combinations – using the Make Up Store instant perfect foundation & the Shiseido Synchro Skin Glow cushion compact.  I will also share the UV protection that I am currently enjoying.  In between I will mention the other ‘accessories’ which I have been enjoying. You will notice that everything is semi-grubby and pan-hitting, but that’s only because I have been using them a load! 🙂

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I have been rotating these three UV bases:

  1. Moonshot UV Bouncer – this smells great, is completely clear and slightly creamy. I use this mainly when I am just heading out of the house for a run, and under foundations that have low SPF.  I had this for a while (when the brand first launched here) but only started using it recently.  Don’t think this is very expensive, and if you are looking for a nice everyday clear sunscreen, this is one to check out.  Love the pump dispenser too!
  2. est.lab Sun Shield – this is my 2nd tube.  You can get this from Estetica Beauty salons in Singapore.  Another pump dispenser tube.  It looks white in the tube, but like I have previously reviewed this before years ago (on my old blog), this blends out and becomes a skintone colour.  I think it will suit all skintones though, as it is not ashy or anything.  So this does help to even out my skintone.  With this, I am covered with SPF and have some tint. If I am just heading out for yoga, I will just put on some concealer to brighten my eyes, and lightly set with powder and this is a good combo for my yoga class, head out to lunch or a random pop around town.
  3. DIORSNOW Makeup Correcting Base with SPF35 – again, another going out for a short while base. It is a tad too peachy for me, but the very lightweight texture is nice to wear.  It does even out my skintone abit.  I will finish it but not feel the need to repurchase/ replace.  Strictly speaking, of course, this is not a sunscreen but more of a makeup base – so if you need a peachy base to correct/ balance a tired skin, this might be a better fit.

Among the three bases here, I would definitely recommend the est.lab Sun Shield ( think it is around $70?) – it has some coverage and proper SPF.

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Next, we have three concealers – NARS is a repeat, while the other two are quite new. I am curious to try out the new Tarte Shape Tape and Kat Von D concealers though!  But I have also purchase some really good concealers lately while I was in Seoul —  I am planning a haul and first impressions entry hopefully to be posted next week. 

  1. NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer – This is my second tube: I take forever to use up one, because at any time, I am using 5-6 different concealers. These are just three which I want to discuss at the moment.  This is one of the best concealers out there for both under the eyes and spots though I use it mainly for under my eyes.  Just to add more coverage and brightening. I can imagine that it might be a little cakey if you have very dry skin or have lines under your eyes,  but for now, this works well for me.
  2. Too Faced Born this way concealer – This has the same coverage as the NARS concealer, but less creamy.  This is a tiny bit streaky compared to the NARS one  (and that’s if I am really nit-picking) but both are quite similar.  I did not enjoy the UD concealer which many have compared to either this Too Faced and NARS one, in case you are wondering.  Quite a decent concealer, so I think it is all a matter of finding the shade you prefer in either the Too Faced or NARS one (price wise, I think they are less than $5 apart).
  3. Bobbi Brown Retouching Wand – this has good coverage.  I like the sponge tip dispenser. A little drying though, so if you have oily skin or oily eye area in general, this is a good one for you. Adheres well to the skin, and I am aware that the Bobbi Brown philosophy has the correct followed by conceal method as far as under eyes are concerned – and if you go to a BB counter, they will NOT recommend to use this for under the eyes, but … to me, whatever works for me.  I don’t really need to correct anything, I just want something to brighten.  So, why should I use an additional product just to correct something that’s non-existent?

 

OK, so now, let’s move on to LOOK ONE featuring the MAKE UP STORE base products.  I was given these lately, and I was immediately drawn to the Instant Perfection foundation – it is supposed to have light coverage but for me this coverage is pretty decent, like light to even medium.  It works well with all the setting powders I will be sharing in this entry, but to keep it within the brand, I have paired it with the MAKE UP STORE Dual Glow foundation powder – which probably added more coverage to the foundation itself.

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In my application, I start out with bare prepped skin (prepped – applied moisturiser) and if I am wearing this foundation out for the day – I will use the Moonshot UV bouncer for more SPF. I don’t think this foundation has any SPF.

You can see, the foundation has a thick consistency, looking like a BB cream.  I like to use this with my fingers, and really work it into my skin. As you can see in the  before/ after shots, the foundation has a light coverage, and yet it manages to neutralise the redness in my skin. If you need foundations with more coverage, MAKE UP STORE has several other more foundations to choose from.  But this is by far my fave (I have also tried the cream one which didn’t impress me).

This foundation always looks fresh, and lasts quite well on me.  It is now my go to foundation especially for going out in the evening.  The sleek flat tube package is quite cool and also makes it easy to pop inside your bag for travel etc.

Highly recommend this foundation!

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The next set of application process shows how I use the concealers under my eyes. Lately I prefer using a Beauty Blender, but most of the time, I just use my fingers.  But these concealers I am sharing here have a thicker consistency so I think a Beauty Blender works better for a seamless application.

You can also see that I used the Dual Glow foundation to set all over my face – I used a powder brush and lightly pressed and rolled it all over my face.

I only filled in my brows.

No other bronzer, blusher, highlighter are used, as I just only want to focus on the skin.

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Really love the finish and natural coverage of this Make Up Store instant perfect foundation!

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In Look 2, I am using the Shiseido Synchro Skin Glow cushion compact – in Neutral 2.  This is a good shade for me, and I was also using this the whole time I was away in Seoul.

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I used the sponge applicator that comes with the compact, and used a pat pat motion to work the product into my skin.  With cushion compacts, you just got to pat pat.. instead of buffing and rubbing (when you are using the sponge applicator).

Compared to the liquid version of this Synchro Skin… the cushion compact  has less coverage and is more glowy.  This is my daytime foundation, and if I want more coverage and SPF (this contains 20+ SPF) I will definitely use either the Dior or the est.lab UV base for more sunscreen.

This has a very natural light coverage, and if you need more coverage, you are better off with the Synchro Skin Fluid foundation.  The cushion compact is convenient, and it looks good on me (I think) but I still prefer its fluid counterpart.

It looks good throughout the day but not as lasting as the fluid foundation.

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Next, I got to rave about this IT cosmetics bye bye pores pressed powder.  It is very finely milled, and I like to dust this in the centre of my face.  It further smooths out my skin and stays that way for a good amount of time. I soon hit pan on it, as you can see.  I also have the loose powder version, which I have swatched many times in Sephora, and it is soooo silky and smooth, I can’t wait to try it out after I am done with the pressed version!

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But for this LOOK 2, I will use the Shu Uemura lightbulb loose powder to set my face.  I think I have mentioned this loose powder before in a ‘foundations I am loving entry’ – this is a good glowy loose powder.  If you want a matte/ non glowy one, you won’t like this.  The glowy factor is quite discernible. For loose powder – I like to use a powder puff, though sometimes I use a large powder brush.

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As you can see in this finished picture, the coverage is much less compared to the Look 1 (and to be fair, my skin was quite reddened after two rounds of cleaning and rubbing from post yoga shower etc etc).

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Bottomline?   My top picks?  

  1. MAKE UP STORE Instant Perfection foundation
  2. NARS Radiant Creamy concealer
  3. Too Faced Born this Way concealer
  4. Shu Uemura Lightbulb Loose powder
  5. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores pressed powder
  6. Est.Lab Sunshield

 

I hope this entry is helpful, and like I mentioned earlier, all product details are mentioned below!   Thank you for reading!!  (I am already at over 2k words, gosh, the rambling is real especially when I crammed so much stuff in one epic entry!)

 

Product details:

Bases/ Sun Protection

  1. Moonshot Multi-Protection UV Bouncer SPF50 PA+++
  2. DIORSNOW Brightening Makeup Base SPF 35 PA+++
  3. EST LAB SunShield UVA & UVB Protection SPF50

Concealers

  1. Too Faced Born This Way Naturally Radiant Concealer (Shade Light)
  2. NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer (Vanilla)
  3. Bobbi Brown Retouching Wand (Porcelain)

Powders

  1. Shu Uemura the lightbulb Glowing Face Powder (colourless)
  2. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Airbrush Silk Pressed Finishing Powder (translucent)
  3. Make Up Store Glow Dual Foundation (stockholm)

Foundations

  1. Make Up Store Instant Perfection (bare)
  2. Shiseido Synchro Skin Glow Cushion Compact (Neutral 2)

Look One Combination

  1. Make Up Store Instant Perfection foundation, set with Make Up Store Glow Dual Foundation
  2. Conceal with Bobbi Brown Retouching Wand
  3. Brows – Son & Park Gel Bonding Eyebrow in 03 Ash Gray set with MAC pro longwear waterproof brow set in Quiet Brunette

Look Two Combination

  1. Shiseido Synchro Skin Glow Cushion Compact, set with Shu Uemura the lightbulb glowing face powder
  2. Conceal with Nars Creamy Radiant Concealer
  3. Brows – Shu Uemura Brow Palette in seal brown/ stone grey and set with Jung Saem Mool Brow Mascara

Oct/Nov 2016: New Beauty Products [MUFE, Urban Decay, Clinique…]

Oct/Nov 2016: New Beauty Products [MUFE, Urban Decay, Clinique…]

Hi hi!!  Get ready for a long rambly post ahead!  I will be loosely dividing this post into a few ‘chapters’ – each with a cluster of products which I am currently playing with, and share with you my thoughts on them.  There are so many new products lately, holiday collections, fall collections, is it that time of the year already??

Anyway, let’s start with new products from Urban Decay – palettes! Here, we have the Naked Illuminating Trio, I think this retails for about SG$60 and it contains 3 shades of sparkly highlighters and a dual ended brush.

I find the packaging excessive in this trio.. they could have done with the packaging of their Flush palettes – more compact, and prolly more product too.  The powder is dome shaped (are they baked powders?) and all three swatched almost the same on my skintone.. and the colours or the sheeen did not show up very well in swatches.  There are visible sparkly bits, especially in the middle shade, oasis.  I didn’t have high hopes when I applied it onto my cheeks later on.  But they perform better when applied onto the actual skin on my face, as you can see in the close up shots of my cheeks.  I used a Morphe fluffy blending brush to apply the product instead of the brush that is included (which seems too synthetic to pick up this type of powder but maybe quite good for contouring/ sculpting instead).

As far as highlighters are concerned, these are not the best in terms of quality… the price point is okay.. but I think I would rather pay about the same for a good single highlighter from Becca or Hourglass. Or if you want to stay in the Urban Decay family, stick with their existing Afterglow Highlighters (only SG$39 each) – Sin is a dupe for Becca’s Moonstone/ Mary Louminizer.

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Next chapter – I shall discuss the Urban Decay Ultimate Basics eyeshadow palette.  It is amazing how they keep coming up with new releases of crowd favourites.  I must say I prefer the Basics 1 rather than Basics 2 palette which seems a tad too cool toned for my liking.  But the Basic palettes contain really good smooth matte eyeshadows which I enjoyed, and I even used them for my eyebrows for a long time (I think I have an old blog entry on using the BASIC palette for my brows).   This palette retails for SG$83 and contains 12 mostly matte eyeshadows (actually only ONE shade has a pearl sheen to it – called Blow, the rest are all smooth & matte).  Mimimal fallout, easy to apply, easy to blend.  This is an outstanding matte eyeshadow palette.  I personally can do with only the lower row of shades, the top row seem all too cool and too similar.  My personal fave shade is BITTERSWEET, that orangey brown just jumps out at me in the whole palette, so I had to use it all over my eyes in this LOTD shown.  I also did another look with only the top row colours, ending up with a very lightly defined look.

Packaging for this palette is also on point, I really like the solid feel of the palette and the huge mirror inside is a bonus.

Bottomline – I highly recommend this Urban Decay palette.  If you have to get something from their new collections.. this is it.

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All products used in this warm smokey look:

face – By Terry Colorless Hydra-Filler, NARS All Day Weightless Radiance Foundation (Light 4), set with NARS Translucent Loose Powder

concealer – NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer

brows – ABH Brow Promade Dark Brown, filled in any gap with Shu Uemura brow powder duo (seal brown)

lashes – Huda Beauty Gisele #13

no eyeliner

eyeshadows as used and stated in the pic above

bronzer/ contour – NARS Olympia

blush – TARTE sensual blush

highlight – Urban Decay Illuminating Trio

lipstick – Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in 714 (mega matte finish)

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All products used in this everyday ‘no makeup’ look:

face – MUFE Ultra HD Liquid foundation, set with NARS Translucent Loose powder

concealer – NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer

brows – MUFE Brow palette (used the waxy base, followed by ABH brow promade in Dark Brown), filled in any gap with MUFE brow palette

lashes – NARS falsies from the Sarah Moon collection #09

lipstick – Urban Decay VICE Lipstick in Naked

eyeshadow – as stated in the picture below

no eyeliner

contour / bronzer – Cle de Peau bronzing powder duo 01, Kevyn Aucoin sculpting powder in Medium

blush – NARS Ukriane (LE)

highlighter – Urban Decay Illuminating Trio

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One last Urban Decay offering I have here to share – the VICE palette – this retails for SGD$68 and contains 12 shades of Vice Lipsticks. I have never been a fan of lipstick palettes – I find the texture to be nothing like the original lipsticks in a tube.. For $68 you can buy almost 3 full sized VICE lipsticks, and you can pick the exact shades that you would actually wear.  This palette contains a lot of fun colours, but who is going to wear the purple or green lipstick, even if they are going to be your lipstick topper…chances are those would not be used  much at all.

One thing tho, I like the packaging, the extra cover is really neat and keeps everything sanitary.  I would like to see a more colour themed VICE lipstick palette though.. for example, and all NAKED lippie palette, all RED palette.. instead of this varied offering.

I won’t be swatching this palette… it is a bit pointless as you can google for the swatches of the individual shades online.. I might give this palette away to someone who would love it more than me.

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Next, let’s move to another brand, Clinique has released new additions to their POP LIP collection, with the POP LIQUID MATTE, and POP MATTE.  I think these retail for under SGD$30, or early $30+.

The Pop Liquid Matte lipsticks have a rather large doe-foot applicator which I find a bit hard to get into the corners of my lips.  I am curious to see how the more  natural MLBB shades work in this collection, as the samples I received are both quite bold. The formula is quite creamy and comfortable to wear.  They take a while to set before looking matte, and I personally prefer 02 Flame Pop as a true red.  These don’t feel dry like most other Liquid Matte lippies, but they don’t have the smooth velvety feel of the Chanel Rouge Ink or NARS Velvet lip glides- the creamy matte formula is something quite nice, especially if you tend to have dry lips.

The Pop Matte lipsticks are more matte than the liquid ones… no dry down, they appear matte immediately.  I like how the colours in the tube have a true colour payoff when applied on the lips.  They are creamy and matte, again the formula is very nice, and easy to use.  05 Graffiti Pop is my top pick from these three, it has a very pretty raspberry red, flattering on most skintones.  Bonus – the frosted bottle design is a winner.

Bottomline – if you like the Clinique Pop Lipsticks, you will like these too.  I enjoyed the original Pop lipsticks when they launch, the formula is creamy and non-drying and the colours are all quite wearable.  Again, I am curious to check out the MLBB shades in person.

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Next, we have some new products from MUFE – I have several other products from MUFE, but I might feature them sometime later. Here we have the Artist Rouge lipsticks, in several finished, and a myriad of colours.  I was sent a selection of colours, one of which is a wicked blue shade that I showed on my Instagram a while ago, but I have since gifted it away to someone who would rock it way better than I would ever do.

These retail for SGD$35 each, quite reasonable!  The packaging is industrial chic, very weighted cap, and the lipstick bullet has a very sharp tip.. give you lots of precision when it comes to application.

I find these lipsticks to have a true colour payoff – what you see is what you get.  There is no hint of white in the bright shades I have to share here, and the formula is quite comfortable and glides onto my lips effortlessly.  I personally prefer the matte shades compared to the creme ones which I find a tad slippery, and streaky.

Bottomline – every brand is coming up with new lipsticks (and I haven’t even start on the MAC liptensity ones!) and I think it is easy to get lost in everything.  For me, the reds in this range stand out, and my personal pick is the hot pink M202 – it looks almost neon without that white base, and still manages to look really opaque.  I am impressed.  It is what I think NARS Schiapp should be like, M401 is gorgeous and really classy. C304 is a true orange, and way better than MAC Morange – again, too white too stark.  C304 is a super in your face true bright orange, almost blindingly bright.

I could probably wear the black a bit better, such as blotting and re applying, but it does take some work.  It is a true black without any blue or green tinge.  Great for Halloween eh?

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Lastly, we have the MUFE pro sculpting brow palette – this is in shade 1, which is a tad light on me, so I only use it to fill in gaps in my brows after using my usual brow promade.  I go through phases with my brow routine, and for the past couple of years, I usually only reach for the gels/ creams, and using a powder to fill in any gaps etc…I like the waxy base in this palette though.  I just rub my spoolie brush into the wax, and brush it through my brow hairs before I use my brow gel/ cream/ powder.  The wax sort of pressed my brow hairs down, and provides a base for the gel/ cream/ powder to hold on to.  I am enjoying this little step… and it makes my brows look quite 3D ish (refer to the ‘natural LOTD’ in this entry for a close up of my brows).

This retails for SGD$76 (pricey!!) and comes in 2 shades (01 and 02).  I think the darker one might suit me better though.  If they sell the waxy thing alone, I would totally just buy that only!  It is a fab base before I fill in my brows.

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Almost at 2000 words already!! I hope you are still reading!!  Do people still even read blogs these days?  The stats on my blog seem ‘healthy’ on a daily basis, but everyone seems to be all about snapchatting, posting stories, posting pretty flatlays.. do people actually care about reading long entries like this?  Even I am guilty and get caught up in this vicious cycle, new products arrived at my desk, post the obligatory IG pic, put everything away, unopened, unused…(opps!!! yes, I am guilty!).   Event launches are organised around the whole Instagram aesthetics these days too, with lots of props and trinklets for participants to artfully arrange them.  I stopped attending such events.  But that’s another story altogether, and I guess you already know my views.  Some people don’t like what I have to say on this, to each her/their own.

I guess there is still a point for my blog… if not where else can I ramble about stuff that I have actually opened and used?  Even if they aren’t that new anymore, I would like to think someone out there might find it interesting to read and maybe try out something new.  I personally find it therapeutic to write and blog, and have been for years and years…so even if the whole ‘influencer’ thing is dead for me, if people stop inviting me to events or stop sending me new stuff, I would still have my own content my own stories my own experience to share.  That’s how it has always been for me, even before ‘influencer’ or ‘blogger’ became a thing.

Not sure if I would be able to post more before the end of Nov.. the month is shaping up to be pretty nightmarish and hectic so far.. and I am leaving early Dec for my year end holiday.  Sometimes I am mentally composing rambly topics in my mind… I am tempted to post another skincare round-up, and also posting current faves entry/ stuff that I am using up lately…my current makeup routine is very simple.. I just have a long-lasting base, brows on… blush, and hardly any lippie.  Very boring.. but sometimes I still like to slap on a full face of makeup.

Anyway, I hope this entry has been helpful as always, and do let me know if you have any questions.. or suggestions for new posts in the comments below!

Thank you so much for reading.

NARS x Sarah Moon Holiday Collection 2016 Preview

NARS x Sarah Moon Holiday Collection 2016 Preview

This entry will take you through a private preview of the Sarah Moon for NARS HOLIDAY 2016 collection.  I will follow up with a closer look at the entire colour collection and share with you my thoughts and top picks in a later entry. Link here!

All pictures here courtesy of the NARS team.

SARAH MOON FOR NARS HOLIDAY 2016 COLLECTION

LOOK CLOSER
François Nars and fashion photographer Sarah Moon dare you to look closer as their limited-edition collection exposes every facet of the feminine.

Deeply inspired by iconic cinema, François Nars and Sarah Moon collectively worked from the nostalgic futurism of Metropolis to set the mood for the season’s story. Every element of the collection blurs the lines between real and surreal, serving as a direct expression of their collaborative vision.

THE COLOR COLLECTION [NOVEMBER 2016]

Rich and hypnotic, the Sarah Moon for NARS Color Collection sharpens and softens, evokes and provokes.

The collection consists of – names and colours in my follow up entry – click here for details and swatches!

Moon Matte Lipstick, $40 [4 shades] – An intensely opulent, high-pigment formula. Limited edition.

Blush, $50 [2 new shades]

Duo Eyeshadow, $52 [2 new shades]

Kohliner, $40 [2 new shades]

Eyelashes, $38 [2 designs]

Nail Polish, $30 [3 shades]

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THE GIFTING COLLECTION [November 2016]

Deceptively nuanced. Boldly mysterious. Every look demands a second look.

GLASS METROPOLIS MINI AUDACIOUS LIPSTICK COFFRET, $180  – 

EIGHT MINI AUDACIOUS LIPSTICKS:

Sarah, Anita, Marlene, Rita, Olivia, Sandra, Charlotte, Bette

*Available exclusively at Tangs at Tang Plaza

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GET REAL AUDACIOUS EYE AND LIP SET, $65

TWO MINI AUDACIOUS LIPSTICKS:  LESLIE, BETTE

BLACK MOON AUDACIOUS MASCARA

THOUSAND WORLDS AUDACIOUS LIP AND NAIL SET, $65

TWO MINI AUDACIOUS LIPSTICK: CODIE, EVA

TWO MINI NAIL POLISHES: LA DAME EN BLANC, LA DAME EN NOIR

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LOOK CLOSER EYESHADOW PALETTE, $65

FOUR EYESHADOW: I, II, III, IV

VIA VENETO MINI LARGER THAN LIFE EYELINER

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TRUE STORY CHEEK AND LIP PALETTE, $90

FOUR BLUSHES: DEVOTEE, MYTH, UNWRITTEN, OUTLAW

MYSTERIOUS RED VELVET MATTE LIP PENCIL

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RECURRING DARE CHEEK AND LIP PALETTE, $90

FOUR BLUSHES: ALBATROSS, SEX APPEAL, ILLUSIVE, MAKE BELIEVE

GOLSHAN VELVET MATTE LIP PENCIL

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MIND GAME MINI VELVET LIP GLIDE COFFRET, $80

SIX MINI VELVET LIP GLIDE: BOUND, NO. 675, CHEZ CLAUDE, UNSPEAKABLE, PLATO’S, TOY

*Available exclusively at Sephora

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GRWM: NARS Fall 2016 & NARS Brow Defining Cream Routine

GRWM: NARS Fall 2016 & NARS Brow Defining Cream Routine

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Hi hi!!

This is a look which I did, that you have seen in the previous entry featuring the NARS Velvet Lip Glides (click here to read!).  In this entry, I try to use as many of the products which I can from the new/ upcoming Fall Collection.  I will try to insert more preview pictures if possible, there are several additions – new additions to the Audacious lipsticks, new colour pencils, new contour duos… lots of new stuff.  I have shared the collection story and pictures in this entry here, so do have a read if you want to see everything else.

I am eyeing the two neutral tone dual intensity eyeshadows in this collection – Rigel and Antares – but for this entry, I just felt like giving my eyelids a light sweep of Shark Pool dual intensity eyeshadow from their Summer collection.. It is a very pretty pale irisdecent blue eyeshadow that didn’t scream the 80s on me (I hope so) but I think it brighten up my eyelids somewhat.

The highlight of this entry for me, is to feature the new brow cream and also the new contour duo.

I love the brow defining cream – it is creamy and easy to blend, reminding me of a cross between the ABH brow promade and the inglot brow creams.  The colour that I am using, which is EL DJOUF – described on the website as a light brown, but I think this is a more medium brown, not too warm, and suits me quite well.

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Next, I am excited for the Contour Duo in Talia – a cooler tone contour kit which is good for pale to light skintone.  Olympia is the current one they have, it is more rosy, but if you want a more classic contour colour, you have to try out Talia.

Texture wise, the NARS contour kits have a drier texture, very fine – not a bad thing if you don’t want to go overboard with the contour.  They are easy to apply and blend.  Compare this to the powdery creamy textures of my Becca and Kat Von D shade and light powders, those go ‘pow wow’ intense on your skin that requires a bit of a panicky blending, but for these NARS ones, I find that they are more subtle, but no less intense and effective.

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and the overall look:

One more time which I definitely want to pick from from this collection is the

Velvet Matte lip pencil in INFATUATED RED – described as Garnet on the site.  I swatched it at the preview session, and it was love at first swipe.

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Overall, my top picks from the NARS Fall 2016 collection:

  1. Velvet Matte Lip Pencil – Infatuated Red
  2. Contour Blush – Talia
  3. Dual Intensity Eyeshadow – Antares
  4. Velvet Eyeliner – Espresso

I hope that my sharing has been helpful, and thank you for reading!

 

Review: MUFE Foundations (Ultra HD Stick, Concealer, Water Blend)

Review: MUFE Foundations (Ultra HD Stick, Concealer, Water Blend)

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Hi hi!! This entry will be an overview of several MUF base products which I have been trying out for the past few weeks and more. All of them are currently available at MUFE pro store and also at Sephora Singapore.   So now, let’s move on to my review:

Just to start off, the MUFE foundations come in a variety of shades and undertones to suit every skintone.  I tend to go for the Y (Yellow) shades just to neutralise the redness in my skin, and if there is a neutral tone, I would also go for it too.  So if I were to eyeball my foundation shade, I usually go for the yellow lightest or second lightest shade.  The shade goes for the concealer.

I know there will be questions over how the MUFE Ultra HD stick compares with the Ultra HD Liquid foundation… I will address that further down this entry too.

Secondly, here’s the summary of all product descriptions and also the shade that I am using in each product.  I have more than one shade, but the one I listed is the one I most often reach for.

Water Blend Foundation SGD72 – I use the shade Y215 Yellow Alabaster.

Give skin a fresh, dewy glow with this unrivaled formula that feels so lightweight, sheer and comfortable. The quick and easy application makes it ideal for both the face and the body, as this water-based waterproof foundation evens out the complexion to leave a natural-looking, satin finish. Created with 80% water, this long-lasting unique water-gel texture naturally hydrates and blends in evenly for a smooth, flawless look.

 

ULTRA HD Foundation Stick SGD72- I use the shade Y225 Marble.

ULTRA HD stick foundation feels like a second skin and still provides medium to full coverage while looking flawless and natural. Exclusive 4K Complex guarantees invisible, natural and comfortable makeup. The creamy texture blends in seamlessly to conceal imperfections. Perfect for touch-ups, the formula glides on and makes skin look even-toned and moisturized, with a soft satin finish. Great for all skin types, even dry skin.

 

ULTRA HD INVISIBLE COVER CONCEALER SGD50 – I use the shade Y21 Pearl. The R32 shade that I have is too dark for me, and I don’t need to correct any undereye discolouration, for me, undereye concealer means to brighten that area, hence I use only the Y shade. 

ULTRA HD Concealer covers dark circles, unifies the eye contour and hides signs of fatigue, leaving a smooth luminous flawless finish. Exclusive 4K Complex guarantees invisible, natural and comfortable makeup. This easy-blend and long-wearing formula illuminates the eye area for a fresh look. Medium coverage. For all skin types.

Swatches of the products:

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Application process:

For both foundations, I use my fingertips to apply – this is my preferred way of foundation application for a long time, and I find that I can work the product into my skin nicely without having to tug or over-buff my skin if I were to use a brush.  Also, I find that I need to use less product when I use my fingertips.  It is messy of course, but nothing that a tissue or wet wipe can’t deal with.

As you can see, the shade Y215 is quite pale, but it sheers out and blends into my skintone.. still looking a little pale, I could probably go a shade darker, but I find that Y215 works because after my bronzers/ contour, I would end up with a brighter centre of my face, and the rest of my skintone is just balanced out.

What impresses me about this formula is that it is very thin, watery and the coverage is sheer – but it is not invisible.  You can see it covers my skin surface with an almost silky finish, and it is easily built up if you need more coverage.. but the coverage will never come up to a proper full coverage.  The foundation sets almost immediately, and you have to work quickly.

I find this foundation to be very long lasting and adheres very well to the skin.  It weighs like nothing, and looks fresh throughout the day, through sweaty workouts, and still stays on strong.

If I were to compare this to other ‘water’ foundations on the market, I would say this is better than the Shu Uemura Cosmetic Water foundation, which to me, felt like a tinted water, it didnt do much for me in terms of coverage and finish.

If I were to compare the MUFE Water Blend face and body foundation to the MAC face and body foundation – I would say the MAC one has more coverage, both are equally lightweight and stays on the skin very well throughout the day.  The MUFE probably has more shades though, while the MAC one goes by N1, N2, C1, etc etc.

Overall, this is a great foundation that  I would reach for long hot days – it looks great in photos and makes you look like you have great skin naturally.  Probably the only downside is that if you have problems with skin texture, this is not the best foundation to give you that smooth flawless finish.  But if you have great skin, you just want to give your skin a smooth even tone, this foundation will take it up a notch and makes your skin look even better.

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On the other side of my face, I applied the MUFE Ultra HD stick foundation – and as you can see, this is the one shade darker than the previous Y215.. this is Y225.. which is exactly my skintone, with a warm undertone.  This is easy to use, I usually just apply it straight from the tube, and use my fingers to even it out.  It has more coverage than the Water Blend for sure, and it good if you have spots to cover.  I find it easy to build up on areas where necessary, and it is creamy enough for you to blend and apply.

If I were to compare the ULTRA HD Liquid to the ULTRA HD stick, I must say that I still prefer the liquid foundation.  It seems to last longer on me and I think that the stick foundation – while it is easy to use, seems a little more emollient, which is fine if you have normal to dry skin.  But if you have normal/ combination/ oily skin, you might want to go for the ULTRA HD Liquid foundation.

Again this is another foundation which photographs beautifully, giving your skin a very smooth finish.  I like this foundation, but if I have to choose, I would go for the liquid, and also the waterblend, both of which lasted longer on me throughout the day.

If you want a a review of my MUFE ULTRA HD liquid foundation, you can find it in this entry here – CLICK.

(note that eventually I sort of meshed the two sides of my face foundation together before I set my foundation…)

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As for the ULTRA HD concealer, I really like how the product comes out, the opening is a rounded ‘glob’ which dispenses the right amount of product.  I think that this is a great undereye brightener if you pick the right shade, on me, this doesn’t look dry nor cakey, though I have come across reviews that it looks cakey for people who have drier or more mature skin than me.  The coverage is pretty intense for something for undereyes, but I don’t mind.  It is quite long lasting, and it is only after the 7 or 8 hour mark that I would notice a bit of lifting and fading of the concealer.  This I usually manage by just dabbing the area and reblending the patches.  Usually by that time I would be going home soon and washing off my makeup anyway.

 

Would you be keen to read an overview of my rotation of undereye concealer/ bases?  I realise I am rotating several that I have been loving, so I think that would be interesting to share. 

Here’s an overall look – and what else I did to complete everything:

on the rest of the face,

I set with RCMA transparent loose powder

brows filled in with ABH Medium Brown, and also with Shu Uemura brow powder duo in Seal Brown

eyes done using Vise Art Theory palette in Minx, and lined with Kat Von D liquid liner in Trooper

for lips I am wearing Colourpop Satin Liquid lipstick in Echo Park

cheeks/ bronzer, I am using MUFE Sculpting Kit 02, followed by MUFE Pro Sculpting Duo 02 as a bronzing blush colour.

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Hope you find this entry helpful, and thank you for reading! 🙂

Review & Swatches: NARS Velvet Lip Glide

Review & Swatches: NARS Velvet Lip Glide

I have a teaser post for you today, featuring the new NARS Velvet Lip Glide – these will only launch in SG around October, so this is a really early sneak peak.  I have the chance to play and swatch the colours in this collection and also share with you my thoughts on how they perform.

Before we go on, here is the collection story:

This season, NARS takes lips to a whole new level with the new Velvet Lip Glide. The new lip color strikes the perfect balance between softness and strength, coverage and comfort in a full range of colors. Laced with NARS’ Oil Infusion Complex, this hybrid lip color combines the fluidity and effortlessness of a gloss with the coverage and comfort of a lipstick. Oil Infusion Complex allows for a smooth-glide effect, instantly delivering saturated color with sensorial comfort. The new doe foot applicator offers a plush application delivering effortlessly nourished lips and intense color. Named after the iconic venues and new attitude that emerged from the sexual revolution of the ‘70s, Velvet Lip Glide shade names capture the freedom of personal power and play.

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Swatches on my hand: 

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and swatches on my lips: 

My top picks?

Unlaced – this is the sexist pale lipstick that doesn’t look like death.. it is like a chic mannequin skin colour on me

Bound – that rosy blush nude shade never gets old

No 54 – this is a sexy red, love!

Deviant – deeper red, very flattering

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My thoughts on these:

I have to say that this is a very interesting formula – at first swatch, I thought they were just pigmented lip gloss.  I didn’t get the ‘velvet’ at all in this formula… and I thought ‘why don’t they make the lip covers from the summer collection permanent because those felt more liquidy less slippery’.. until I really had a chance to explore them and also to apply on my lips.  It takes a while for the velvet lip glide to set on your lips.. and they set into this soft velvety finish – which you can see, the transition from the glossy look in the lip swatches into the velvety in the overall face shots.  They all feel quite comfortable, and they apply very very smoothly.  I won’t compare these nor put them in the same category as the endless supply of liquid lipsticks saturating the lipstick market at the moment.  They might be a tad similar to the Giorgio Armani maestro lip colours.  The pale neutral shades are beautiful in this formula, and the bolder shades are really chic and don’t slip and slide all over the place.

In terms of lasting power, I have to say they don’t last that long – not that they are really marketed as bulge proof or long lasting –  and touching up and reapplication is necessary.  But they are easy to wipe off, and easy to re apply.  If you are prone to dry lips, and you want to try out something easy to wear.. you have to try these out.

Everything else on the face is also NARS.. but I forgot what I wore.. it has been weeks since the pictures were taken and processed.

Most likely the NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint, Dual Intensity Eyeshadow in Pool Shark, Brow Gel (which I will review in another entry), and Gilda (or Lovejoy?) blush… and Laguna bronzer Hot sands highlighter. Lashes – Huda Beauty Lashes in -1 Gisele.

 

Notice how in these full face shots, the lip colors have set to a more of a almost soft matte finish, very very nice!!

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I hope my review has been helpful and thanks for reading!

NEW Urban Decay Vice Lipsticks

NEW Urban Decay Vice Lipsticks

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Hi hi!  Sharing with you my overall thoughts on the new Urban Decay Vice lipsticks which are just launched at Sephora this weekend.  I had the chance to preview and play with these lipsticks for a while, and I shall share with you with are my faves.

 

Just a few quick facts before we move on:

SG$29 each – this is a darn good price point, and you can easily grab a few without feeling like you have spent a bomb… and with over 100 shades, you definitely will want to get more than a couple.

six finishes

  1. COMFORT MATTE – creamy matte * this is my fave formula among all
  2. CREAM – this is like the previous Revolution lipsticks, they are creamy and intense, slight sheen
  3. Metallized – Imagine the CREAM LIPSTICKS, packed with glitter/ shimmer
  4. SHEER – this is the old Sheer Revolution, depending on your colour choice, the nude ones are really see through, while the bolder shades still pack decent colour payoff
  5. SHEER SHIMMER – this is the sheer sister of the Metallized finish
  6. MEGA MATTE – this is like a liquid lipstick in a tube, but  more comfortable to wear.  I am impressed.

The lipsticks are formulated with their trademark PIGMENT INFUSION SYSTEM – which gives the lipsticks super creamy texture and rich colour payoff. They comfort and hydrate, and never leave your lips dry.  They also contain extracts of Aloe Vera, Jojoba and Babassu oils to soften your lips.

Here’s a closer look at the packaging, which is sleek, not bulky at all, and shaped like a bullet – most of you would have seen the pic of me on my IG, wearing a whole load of these lipsticks in a bullet strap at Sephora.. hehe – I personally find them easy to pop into your small bags for touching up on the go.

My thoughts – as I have already mentioned – not all the six finishes are going to appeal to everyone.  The sheer shimmer are almost like lipstick toppers – but I won’t def wear them on their own.  Some of the metallized ones are like frosty lipsticks – not exactly attractive to me, as you will see in one of the shades below.

Your best bet would be to go for the CREAM, CREAMY MATTE, and/or even the MEGA MATTE – the latter, I find that they feel dry at first touch, but as you glide them over your lips over and over, somehow they seem to warm up a bit and melt into your lips, giving your lips a very smooth, matte look.  I must say they are really beautiful.

The shades that I love love love out of this bunch, and from more that I have swatched and explored are

  1. Rock Steady – C
  2. 714 – MM
  3. Rush – C
  4. LIAR – C
  5. Hitchhike – CM

I love that they have kept some of the classic shades, like Naked, Menace, and brought back Mrs Mia Wallace as a permanent addition to the collection.  Got to love some brand heritage here. 🙂

In terms of longevity, this really depends on the finish, the sheer ones will require more touching up throughout the day, but the CM, and MM formula will definitely stay on much longer.  I also like how the Cream formula really glide on your lips and deliver full colour payoff in one swipe.

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Here are swatches on my lips:

 

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And some of my faves overall:

On the rest of my face I am using

IT COSMETICS CC CREAM, CONCEALER, SET WITH RCMA LOOSE POWDER, NAKED 3 palette

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I hope this entry has been helpful, and thank you for reading!

Get Ready with Me: Hourglass Flawless Base

Get Ready with Me: Hourglass Flawless Base

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Hi hi!!

In this GRWM entry, I will be sharing my thoughts on a few HOURGLASS makeup products, and also, pop on a smokey plum eyelook using the KatVonD eyeshadow palette. I love this look, it has been a long time since I do a non-neutral smokey look and I like how it turned out.  I didn’t really feature any particular lip colour in this entry, but in my first pic, you can see that I went with a purple lip, just to go with the theme of the eyes.

On my face, I used the Hourglass Illusion skin tint – this foundation is not really a ‘tint’ in terms of coverage, it packs on decent coverage, and is extremely smooth and quite creamy. For the name Hyaluronic, I thought that this foundation would be more fluid, and feels ‘thinner’ but this one has a BB cream type of formula.  The finish is semi matte.  Overall it is quite nice, but my only negative thing to say about it is that I wish it is easier to apply and blend.  It doesn’t quite glide on.. but takes a bit more effort to blend and set into my skin.  But once it sets, the finish and feel is quite impressive. I haven’t tried it with the Mineral Veil primer… maybe I will update once I have given this combo a go.

I think I have already mentioned my thoughts on the YSL moisture glow in a previous entry (it is good stuff!) so do check out the older posts from last weekend!

Next, to pimp up the complexion, I went all Hourglass too – the entire Ambient range is just amazing, they are subtle glowy, not the Becca on fleek ‘see the glow from outer space’ type of intense glow.  So if you want subtlety in your makeup finish, you can’t go wrong with the Hourglass ambient products.

One thing though, the pigmentation is intense – so while the shine is wearable, this doesn’t meant that you can be heavy handed with the Ambient powders – especially so for the Bronzer and Blushes.

The Ambient bronzer in Bronze Light is the paler shade of the two they come out with.  And it is warm and intense.  I have to be light-handed, but the colour is so nice, this is definitely one of top five bronzers.

I also used Diffused Heat in this entry, and again, lightly tap and lightly apply for the best results.

I like Ethereal Light as a finishing powder – I will dust it under my eyes, all over the middle of my face after I have set my face with a loose powder.  This gives your face an almost undetectable sheen, and helps to finish off the complexion.

Finally, I used Incandescent Strobe Light to highlight my cheeks.  This gives a pearly sheen as a highlight.. not too ‘on fleek’ shiny. If you are scared of intense cheek highlights, you will be safe with the Strobe Light powders.

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On my eyes, I used the KatVonD eyeshadow palette, as the placement of the colours as shown in the picture below.

This is extremely smooth and fine, and as far as matte eyeshadows go, these are some of the best ones.  There is hardly any fallout, and they blend so smoothly, not patchy at all. I love it, and I do wish I have a more neutral palette to work with. I  have previewed and swatched all the other palettes from the brand, so I know for sure the quality is consistent across the colour way.

I also used KatVonD liquid liner in Trooper.  I like the firm sharp tip, and it allows me to draw a good winged liner.  I only wish it is blacker though – because I do have to go over the liner a few times.  But it stays put, and looks good throughout the whole wear time.

 

That’s all I have for this entry, and thank you for reading!!

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All products used – All Hourglass unless stated

Face

prepped with YSL Instant Moisture Glow

hourglass Illusion Hyaluronic Skin Tint in Ivory

By Terry highlighting concealer brush in 03 beige

set with Shu Uemura lightbulb loose powder

warm up complexion with Ambient Bronze in Bronze Light

set undereyes with Ambient lighting powder in Ethereal Light

blush in Diffused Heat

highlight cheeks with Incandescent Strobe Light

Eyes

Kat Von D shade & light for contour eye quad in Plum

eyes lined with Kat Von D liquid liner in Trooper

Lips

Kat Von D in LUV

Skincare Chat: All About Cleansing

Skincare Chat: All About Cleansing

Hi hi!

I shall discuss several cleansers which I am trying out, mostly new discoveries and they range from all sorts of cleansers – makeup removers, foaming cleansers, cleansing water, cleansing balms, exfoliating cleansers, cleansing gadgets, you name it… I think I have all grounds covered here.

The act of cleansing your face is as important, if not more important than putting on makeup, or applying skincare products afterwards.  At the end of a long day, there is nothing better than washing off the dirt, pollutants, makeup products off your face, so that your skin can ‘breathe’ freely, and ready to receive the goodness of your skincare products.  There is no point in piling on expensive skincare products if your skin is not properly washed.  I also believe that makeup products in general, do not clog pores or skin.  It is the lack of proper cleansing that causes pore clogging.

The Gadgets:

Some of us like to use gadgets to help in the cleansing process, and in the market, there is a range of electronics to help you with that – most notably, the Clarisonic and also the FOREO cleansers (link to my FOREO review here)  The new Foreo Luna 2 (S$299) has a larger touch points to allow for a deeper cleanse and 12 different settings to enhance your cleansing.  Like I mentioned before,  it is a thorough cleanse, and it is gentle enough for everyday use (esp if you find the Clarisonic system a bit too harsh).

Another ‘gadget’ that I have tried out is the Magic Eraser (S$30) – this is a tad gimmicky if you ask me – a washcloth that claims to remove your makeup just by wiping your face with the cloth and water.  The secret of this magic eraser lies in the weave of the fabric which picks up all traces of makeup on the face.  I use the cloth damp, and rub in a circular motion to remove my makeup.  I find that I have to go over a few times, and honestly, the idea of going soap-less and foam-less, is a bit unsettling for me. So I followed up with a foaming face wash anyway.  But if you are very sensitive to chemicals found in soaps, or you really are curious to try this out, why not?

The Clarifying & Scrubbing:

I tested out the trio of Dr Jart+ Dermaclear Trans-Forma Clay Trio (S$37) and these remind me of the Glamglow Supermud cleansing foam.  They are a hybrid of a clay mask, as well as foaming up to cleanse your skin.  I like that you get a trio of clay cleansers to suit your skin needs.  They all have this instant brightening effect which I enjoy, and I find them very nice to use after removing your makeup.

Speaking of GlamGlow, I have been using the PowerCleanse (S$59) – which is a mud and oil cleanser, which gently foams upon contact with water.  This is a nice cleanser, but not one which I often reach for (which I think I have mentioned before in my last skincare update) I prefer the original supermud cleanser.  I just don’t feel like it is doing  much for me, but my younger sis loves it.

The next cleanser I want to mention is the Arcona Cranberry Gommage (S$60), which is quite an intensive scrubbing product.  It contains cranberry enzymes, and is supposed to unclog and minimise pores, leaving the skin visibly clearer and more refined.  It is also quite well-received in the beauty world, having won awards etc.  I find the beads in this scrub very very dense and fine, almost like a sandpaper effect upon contact with the skin.  It is not unpleasant, but if you are not a regular scrubber like me, the sensation can take some getting used to. The scent is pretty awesome though.  And I have to say, I did notice instant improvement of my skin and the effect lasts for a couple of days – smooth and clear skin texture!  Really quite nice!

The Gentle Ones 

I also tested out products from Estelle & Thild, an organic skincare line from Stockholm.  Everything smells so good from this line – I started with using the Biocleanse Radiance Micro Polish – a bit more gentle than the Arcona one – followed by the Deep Cleansing Detox Mask – which is a clay mask – quite soothing, and not the ‘sucking your pores clean’ type of clay mask.  And finally the Biocleanse Silky Soft Cleansing Milk (S$36) – which is a very gentle non foaming makeup remover – well, I use it to remove makeup, but I think you can also use it in the mornings to refresh your skin for the day.

For Anti-Aging (including Balms)

I have been loving the new Shu Uemua ultime8 intensive cleansing balm – it is one of my top fave as far as cleansing balms are concerned.  It smells great, didn’t break me out, and best of all, I don’t have to use any sponge or washcloth with it.  It emulsifies away nicely, taking off all my makeup and dirt.  I have made a huge dent in this tub, and it is worth every penny.  I think I actually prefer this to their iconic cleansing oils now!

Another cleansing balm I have tried is the Peter Thomas Roth 24K Gold Cleansing Butter (S$103).  It feels a bit like the Shu Uemura balm, but a tad richer, and you do need to use a cloth or the Konjac sponge that comes along with it.  It is infused with pure 24k gold, and is a solid to oil cleanser that melts away makeup and impurities.  I think this is good for dry skin, as it is very hydrating. This is really nice, but if I have to choose a balm, I would go for the Shu Uemura one.

Finally, we have products from the brand Algenist – and I have love everything that I tried from this brand, their cleansing balm (which comes in a tube) and  their anti-wrinkle cream, and this Genius Ultimate Anti-Aging Foaming Cleanser (S$55) is no exception. It is a foaming cleanser which contains Alguronic Acid and Microalgae oil to minimise the appearance of fine lines leading to supple skin.

Everyday Basics

I love my tube of Kiehls Ultra Facial Oil-Free Cleanser – it is a very foamy clean cleanser – I love this for my double cleansing routine.  It is a very good everyday cleanser, it leaves my skin feeling clean but not stripped, there is no scent no complicated features.. just a good clean plain cleanser.  I cannot recommend this enough.

On lazy days, you can’t go wrong with a cleansing water – I usually do this in my room with a wad of cotton pads.  Then I head straight to the shower and wash up before I go to bed.  The Sephora brand Triple Action Cleansing Water (S$28) removes makeup and leaves the skin clean and soft to touch.  It doesn’t require rinsing, so it is good when you just want to get it over with.  I find this just as effective as the Bioderma cleansing water, but a tad stinging around the eyes.  But to remove face and brow makeup (which is what I use everyday) it is superb.

In a Nutshell – My top recommendations

  1. Kiehls Ultra Facial Oil-Free Cleanser
  2. Shu Uemura ultime8 intensive cleansing balm
  3. Arcona Cranberry Gommage
  4. Genius Ultimate Anti-Aging Foaming Cleanser
  5. Dr Jart+ Dermaclear Trans-Forma Clay Trio

You can get most of the products I mentioned here from Sephora stores or Sephora SG online – click here  [disclaimer – this is not any sort of affiliate link]    

Disclaimer – most of the products mentioned here are kindly sent by Sephora for my own trial, I am only featuring the products which I would like to mention on the blog along with my own collection of cleansing products that I am using at the moment.  This is also part of Sephora’s #cleanupyouract cleansing campaign which features (of course) the array of cleansing products they have online and in store.

 

I hope you find this entry helpful, and thank you for reading!