Friday’s Letters: It’s a Good Friday

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Dear Auckland: Thankyou for being such a beautiful city. I don’t always appreciate how lucky I have it here. Dear Edd: Thankyou for so much. Thank you for taking photos of amazing sunsets when I am driving. Thankyou for letting me cry on you after a rough shift. Thankyou for spending all day with me in bed watching movies and tv shows. Dear Family: I’m looking forward to spending the long weekend seeing you all! Dear IT crowd: You are hilarious and I don’t know why I haven’t watched you more. Dear Easter: Thank you for an excuse to buy chocolate and the time to send with family and my husband. Dear Work: This week was a little challenging and some times I’m not sure I can do this but then I realise how rewarding you can be. I do need more shifts though (or another job to make up some more hours? That would work too!) Dear Skin: Please calm the heck down, I can’t handle your sensitivity and mood swings! Dear Callie: Please stop attacking me when I have takeaways, you know I always share with you so just be patient my dear!! Dear God: Thank you for sending your only son to die for our sins.

My first guest post!

Hi All!

Just a quick post to let you all know that today my guest post went up on http://www.balmainbeauty.com which is a great makeup and beauty blog run by my friend Karen, an Aussie living here in NZ. I shared with her readers my favorite Autumn/Fall nail polish trends and would love it if you popped over and let me know what you think! It was my first guest post but I really enjoyed writing it!

http://www.balmainbeauty.com/2013/03/autumnfall-nail-trends-for-2013.html

See you tomorrow with some monthly favourites!!

X

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Made me smile: 25th March

Hi All!
Last week went so fast but lots of good things were within it and now that I have at least some work I am able to enjoy things a bit more without the over arching guilt that I have to earn some money! So here are some of the things that made me smile this week:

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Lunch time salad dates with the other half made my days at home much less lonely. Additionally the mexican chicken salad from Habitual Fix is divine and I want to buy it in bulk so I can eat it all week long.

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Found this somewhere and liked it. Alice in wonderland is a strange but rather wonderful story and the Cheshire Cat has to be my favorite part.

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Mid week baking sessions, this time chocolate chip cookies to use up some spare chocolate chips that somehow had avoided being eaten. Miracles can happen. These were super simple and my kind of scrummy cookie, I’ll try and remember to share the recipe (I say this far more often that I actually follow through don’t I? Sorry!)

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Excuse the crass language (what more can you expect when referring to Hell’s Kitchen?) but this made me chuckle. Edd and I used to watch ever series of HK and now I can barely sit through one episode haha. Not sure why.

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On Sunday many games of Monopoly deal were played with my brothers and Edd. I love this game and enjoy it despite losing over and over. Somehow Mr 5 beat us all every time….Surely I should be able to occasionally beat a 5 year old?

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Also on Sunday was another baking session, however I did hardly anything and got my two slaves brothers to do the work! We made afghan biscuits and they turned out pretty delicious. If you have never heard of what I believe is a bit of a New Zealand delicacy (lol) I will be sharing the recipe (if I ever get around to it…just joking, this one I plan to do this week) for these little crunchy chocolate biscuits plus icing with you all!

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Sorry, still obsessed with unlikely animal friendships.
Speaking of which this link (http://on.natgeo.com/11phMQg) is for an ADORABLE video about a badger and a fox who are like, best friends. So cute! Reminds me of fox and the hound without the douchey farmer!

Other things that made me smile this week included seeing old friends who you haven’t caught up with in years, playing with nail polish, kitty cuddles at nightime and in the mornings, good books, getting all your clothes washed, delicious and healthy-ish Japanese food and weather that means I’m ready to start drinking hot pots of herbal tea yay!

This week I also got a bit more involved on Tumblr and had lots of fun (although the link below was more strange than fun…). If you have a Tumblr please leave it in the comments for me to come follow you (not creepy at all ..)

So this was weird….http://pokemonxniccage.tumblr.com/…just in case you wanted to see Nicholas Cage’s face on a bunch of pokemon. Pidgey is my favorite/incredibly creepy

Speaking of Pokemon….(less weird and more cute!)

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Have a great week! x

What I’m Chucking 2013 Volume 1

Hi All,

So I’m still a bit undecided about the whole “Product’s I’ve used up” kind of post but until someone tells me this is a silly post i’ll continue on showing you my rubbish…. Part of the reason I like these is that I have a chance to give you my thoughts on some products which may not have featured elsewhere on the blog. I don’t really do product reviews on individual items so I like the opportunity to give a couple of words on stuff I’ve been using. So here is my first Volume of my rubbish for 2013 haha.

photo 11. Maybelline XXL Pro Mascara: This is a mascara that is so old it should have been chucked ages ago but I loved it so much I was reluctant! But off it goes! This was a double ended product with one side defining and lengthening (I think) and the other volumizing. I did love this but have since found equally if not better mascaras that I prefer and that are a bit easier and quicker to apply. Repurchase? I don’t think this is even still sold oops.

2. Olay Moisturizing Cream for Sensitive Skin: This was my go-to moisturizer for ages and was repurchased over and over. I love it because it’s moisturizing without feeling too heavy and doesn’t irritate my very sensitive skin. At the moment I am using a couple of different moisturizers just in an effort to be more adventurous but will most likely repurchase this in the future as it’s only $10 on special and does the job well.

3. Kleancolour Waterproof Eyeliner Pen: This was a piece of crap. I didn’t get a single stupid use out of this liquid eyeliner, pretty much the worse I’ve ever tried. I got this for like $5 at Postie Plus and I wasn’t expecting anything good but I was expecting SOMETHING. This just didn’t seem to work and left watery marks all over my hand no matter how much I played around trying to encourage something to happen. I really hope I just got a dud and they aren’t all this crap but I don’t plan on buying another.

4. Natio Pure Mineral Foundation: This is another product that is quite old. There’s a fair amount left in it but I never reach for it (I don’t think I’ve used it in months) and so not much point keeping it around. It was fine but quite light coverage for a foundation and nothing special. I have BB creams and other foundations I would prefer to use up so off it goes! Repurchase? Not likely.

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5. evo:The great hydrator moisture mask: This was a sample I got in my first SampleBar pack but never quite got around to using until this year. I loved this and it did a beautiful job on the ends of my hair. I got quite a few uses because I mainly used it on my dry ends but the full size I know is quite expensive. Repurchase? If I see it somewhere I may consider but it’s a little out of my price range at the moment.

6. Kleancolour Mascara: Sorry for the extremely worn appearance of this, it was kept in my handbag, primarily for the mini mirror on the other side and as a backup mascara in case I forgot to wear and bring one. The mascara was pretty useless and dried up super quick so time to make more room for other makeup! Repurchase? Nope.

7. Vaseline Dry Skin conditioning lotion: I always try to have an abundance of creams and lotions for my dry skin and hands and this was a good backup when I ran out of my main hand cream or body lotion. Its all gone now and I may repurchase just because it‘s super cheap (around $3-4 at the Supermarket) and does a fine job when I need a quick moisture fix.

8. Cinnamon Mint Marvis Toothpaste: Another product from a SampleBar pack this was a small size of a lovely cinnamon flavored toothpaste! I rather loved this but probably won’t purchase the full size because it’s around $14 which is a little excessive for a toothpaste…

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9. Sex and the City LOVE Shower Gel: This is the shower gel that came in a pack with the LOVE fragrance and the lotion and some mini sizes of two other fragrances. This is still practically full but being chucked because it doesn’t lather up well and doesn’t seem to do much other than smell okay. I have a lot of other shower gels I would prefer to use and this one isn’t great for my sensitive skin anyway. The lotion I kept although it’s a similarly crappy quality product because it doesn’t irritate my legs and so works as a simple leg and foot lotion.

10. Cocoa Butter Formula Skin Therapy Oil: I kept meaning to review this and never did and now its all gone! This was a lovely oil product that I used in a couple of different ways. I get eczema and irritation on my hands especially and I would add some drops of this to a tub of warm water to make a nice soak for my hands. It calmed down my skin and also put a lot of moisture into it as well. I also used this straight onto any scars or skin markings and it seemed to help those heal a bit better. It was also nice to add a couple drops to my night time moisturizer for an added level of moisture and also because the various oils all helped with fine lines and dry skin. It included cocoa butter, vitamin E, Sesame Oil, Canola oil, Cetesomate-E and Rosehip oil. For $11 this was a decent product but now I am using either pure organic rosehip oil or bio oil.

11. Lioele Beyond the Solution BB Cream: My beautiful friend Mish gave me this BB cream sample and I loved it! It is an asian BB cream so has quite a different feel compared to most of the ones we find here like the Garnier. It was really good coverage unlike my other Western BB creams and also had a slightly greyer tone if that makes sense. It made me look a little pale but a touch of my powder helped with that. Definitely interested in ordering a full size online as this lasted ages with a little going a really long way.

12. Maybelline Master Precise Liquid Liner: This is probably my favorite liquid liner that I’ve tried (although I haven’t tried many). It was in my first favorites post and I was very sad when it finished. Repurchase? Most likely when I next see it on special.

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13. Paris Hilton perfume: This is so old I don’t even know if it has a name. This was one of the first perfumes I ever got and hence I didn’t ever want to throw it away. The scent originally I think was quite nice but quite young and girly so probably not something I would gravitate towards now. Also I’m certain it’s gone completely off and smells a bit rancid haha so definitely chucking now!

14. Kleancolour Wizard Pads (Nail Polish Remover Wipes with cuticle oil): First off these did not remove nail polish well AT ALL. They smudged it around a bit but I never succeeded in actually using these as nail polish remover. Once I accepted this small fact I loved these wipes! They were perfect after I used nail polish remover to get any last tiny bits off and to moisturize my cuticles. They had heaps of oil on them that felt wonderful on my nails and cuticles and one pad usually would last a couple of manicures which meant this pack lasted me ages! I also loved the cucumber scent! It was delish. I didn’t buy these, they were a Christmas gift from not last year but the year before (took me a while to start using them obviously haha) but if I do see them around I’ll definitely pick some more up.

15. Burt’s Bees Shampoo and Conditioner with Grapefruit and Sugar Beet: I won the two of these in a giveaway and was excited to try them out. These were another thing I kept meaning to review and never did. They are made with lots of organic products and stuff that’s nice and healthy for my hair which was great! The shampoo seemed to really deep clean my hair and I definitely needed the nice thick conditioner to restore some softness to it but in combination these two products worked great and my hair felt really healthy and clean. The scent is something that I think could put some people off as it is strong and smells “organic” if that makes sense… It was sweet but very citrusy from the grapefruit and I personally loved the fact that the scent wasn’t temporary and I could pick it up ever now and again throughout the day, but I know some people don’t like their hair to smell too strong. Repurchase? I’m pretty sure these are quite expensive so not sure if I will repurchase as I tend to use slightly cheaper (although not as nice) alternatives.

Whoo, that’s it. Sorry for the huge number of products. I’ll try do them a little more often so they aren’t quite so excessive haha. Let me know if you have used any of these products and what your thoughts are ūüôā

Xx

Friday’s Letters: A lack of foxes

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Dear Callie: I love but sometimes your a bit creepy. Like when I wake up to you staring at me on my shoulder… Dear Mum: It is always so lovely to see you for lunch and much needed catch-ups. I love that you and me are like best friends and that we can both off load on to each other! Dear Summer: We get it. You were great this year but I actually wouldn’t mind if it cooled down a little more so I can start wearing fox jumpers again. I know I will regret saying this when it rains every day and I long for your sunshine but right now I just want to wear autumn nail polish! Dear Self: We have to get back into a better gym/healthy eating routine ASAP! It’s hard with a new job and unpredictable hours but its up to us to make time and strop procrastinating. Dear Universe: Thank you for giving me such kind and generous friends! Dear New Zealand: Why no foxes?! I would live here forever if it wasn’t for a blatant lack of bushy red tails. Kiwis and Tuataras aren’t quite the same thing. Dear Edd: This year is pretty exciting in terms of our holiday that awaits us at the end of it! I can’t wait to spend two months exploring the UK and Europe with you. Until then it means spending nights apart while I do night shifts and that kind of sucks ūüė¶ But we have the rest of our lives together so we’ll cope! Dear iPad (mini): I want you but I don’t really want your price tag. But more importantly I want you. Dear Mr 11: Have fun at camp! It was always the highlight of school for me and I know you will have an awesome time.

Taking care of my skin with Trilogy

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Hi All!

So I don’t normally do product reviews, in fact this may be my first. The reason for that is purely my limited knowledge of skincare and beauty that leaves me feeling ill equipped to ramble on about products. Since getting more interested in the beauty blogiverse I have become a little more aware of what I am putting on my face so when my friend had spares of these two products up for grabs I jumped at the chance to give them a go. I had never tried Trilogy before but had heard various good things about their skin care range. I avoided them purely because of price, my skin care all comes from the supermarket haha.

1. Certified Organic Rosehip Oil

I have incredibly dry skin so have been on the look out for oils like this to try. For my face I add two drops to my¬†moisturizer¬†at night (not during the day because it just gets too heavy for this heat) and for my hands which are my other big problem area in terms of¬†eczema¬†and dry skin I often put some drops into a hot water bath to soak my hands in for ten to twenty minutes. Also, while I was on our little Northland road trip I was¬†extremely¬†lazy with skin care routines and this was kind of my go-to moisturizer when I couldn’t be bothered digging through my bag for day and night creams.

So how did I find it? I love this product. It has made the skin on my face softer by morning and it feels less dry all through the day. The redness on my face has also reduced although this could be due to either product. I haven’t had any reactions to the oil and it blends into my skin without leaving an oily residue on top like some others I have tried. I like the fact this is certified organic, always makes me feel better putting organic products on my sensitive skin. Also, during the time when I used only this on my face, day and night, my skin looked better than ever! Needless to say I am rather impressed.

2. Hydrating Mist Toner

This product is what the name describes…a hyrdrating mist toner that you spray all over your face post cleanser and pre moisturizer. I am notoriously lazy when it comes to toner but since getting this have used it every day! I love how much easier it is to spray this and let dry before moisturizing (although if you prefer applying on a cotton pad that works too). I also spray this on when I am getting really hot and revolting. I haven’t had any negative reactions to the product and my skin is looking better than ever!¬†The scent is Rose,¬†lavender¬†and geranium and its subtle yet fresh and floral which I love (the¬†lavender¬†isn’t too overpowering which can easily happen I find).

All in all I love both these products and when I run out I will definitely repurchase to keep my skin happy but not my wallet/husband.

The prices for these two products in NZ aren’t cheap but I can’t get the exact price off the Farmer’s website. I’ll update this when I find out but until then you can check out the cheapest prices for Trilogy products online at PriceMe. You can buy Trilogy products in New Zealand at Farmers as well as at a lot of Pharmacies and some selected health stores.

Next up I would love to try their Gentle calming fluid for Sensitive skin as well as their Energizing facial lotion. Let me know what your experiences with Trilogy products has been ūüôā

SampleBar Glam Pack March 2013

 

Hi All! Another month, another Glam Pack to share with you all. Last month I said I was probably stopping my subscription…obviously that didn’t happen. I accidentally on purpose missed the date to cancel my subscription by and so was stuck with this month’s box haha but I’m not complaining because I rather like what was provided this month. I do plan on cancelling my subscription however we shall see if I actually make it this month. Anyway, the products this month centered around the theme of pampering oneself now that Summer has supposedly abandoned us. Here’s what I got!

Sample bar march 20131. Spa Ritual Bath Salts: These came in two little 17g sachets, I would assume enough for one relaxing soak each, however I unfortunately lack a bath in my flat and so these may be used for a foot or hand soak instead. They come with¬†frankincense¬†essential oil along with a bunch of sea salt and dead sea salts. They are 70% organic which is 70% great to hear and are made with vegan ingredients. All in all I’m excited to try these out and compare them to my trusty Epsom bath salts. The full size of this (220g) is $47.99 which is pretty steep compared to my $10 tub of epsom bath salts (to which I just add my preferred essential oils) so not sure I will buy this in the full size.

2. Bestow Beauty Powder: Another sachet, this time containing a bunch of flax seed, pumpkin & coconut flour, spirulina, black current extract and other good things that should ” feed your skin from within”. I love the idea of this product and the fact you can sprinkle it onto pretty much anything, from a smoothie to a¬†stir fry, to get a boost of skin enriching ingredients. I doubt one use is at all useful in showing any kind of positive result but I still appreciate the chance to try out the product in terms of taste. The full size (300g) is available for $45 which might be a fair price depending on the nmr of uses one would get out of that size.

3.¬†Carol Priest Almond & LemonBalm Facial Scrub:¬†Another little sample that I was very pleased with is this little glass tub of gentle, creamy exfoliant from a brand I have never heard of. Apparently this can be left on as a rich protein mask for the skin as well which I may try! Smells interesting but in a good way and is full of nice sounding ingredients such as lemongrass (which is the main scent for me), ground almonds and other herbal oils so I am looking forward to trying this out. Also I am thankful for the decent sample size which is important when trying skin products out properly. The full size (50g tub) is $58.60 which seems a little expensive for me but we’ll see how it goes.

4. GeoSkincare Night Repair Cream:¬†A beautiful full size of this was lovely to see when I opened the box. I am a sucker for a good night cream and have to admit I have already slathered some of this on my face! It feels rich and hydrating and a little goes a¬†really long way. This brand, which I haven’t used before, seems to stick to healthy ingredients, steering clear of parabens and artificial fragrances which makes my sensitive skin very happy to hear. One other thing I love is that this is in a pump not a container so you get much more¬†hygienic¬†application! I wish more creams came like this. Full size product (50mL) is on SampleBar for $43.92 and I may consider repurchasing.

5. Model Co Eye Define Black Eyeliner:¬†The other full size product was a black eye liner from Model Co (the same company that provided the excellent lip gloss from last month’s box). I wasn’t dissapointed or excited by this at first, I use black eye liner so nothing wrong with trying another but I wasn’t over happy. Then I tried it on my hand and was much more excited indeed! This pencil eyeliner is the smoothest I have ever tried. Its very pigmented and glides on like butter! Normally I stick to liquid or gel for a wing on my lids but this works so nicely that it turned out perfect for doing a gorgeous winged eye. Very pleased indeed and at $26 for full size I may well repurchase.

Last up were two vouchers included in this month’s box. The first is for a set of accent lashes at Cerise Lash and Makeup with no minimum spend so I will definitely try and make use of this. The second voucher is for 20% off any geocare products purchased on the sample bar website before the end of April which is great if I want to try any of their other items.

Over all I was very happy with the full size products in this month’s box and the samples were pretty good too! Makes it much harder to go through with cancelling my subscription haha (Just FYI I am not cancelling because of the quality of the box but more so because I could use the money each month on one product that I really want and with money being tight this seems like the better option)! If you would like to sign up for next month’s box head over to SampleBar¬†(don’t worry, I don’t get any incentives for sending you there through that link).

Have a great rest of the month!

X

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