Saturday, 29 November 2014

My Favourite Makeup Products (The Ones I Can't Survive Without. Literally.)

Hello there little powder puff!

It has been way too long since I last posted, so today I wanted to come back with something a little special. I'm joined by a wonderful guest - the ever beautiful and talented Annika Victoria, with whom I had a little play with some of my favourite makeup products. 

Although I haven't been as into makeup as I am now for very long, I have always had an interest and I started to collect those products that I absolutely loved and that became my 'Holy Grails'. These include some of my every day staples such as my favourite foundation, powder and the pencil eyeliner that I have loved and worn consistently for years and they also include a couple of other favourites that I safe for more special occasions, such as my Nars Illuminator in the Shade Copacobana. All the products I will mention are ones that I believe are worth all the hype they get, and ones I would recommend.

First step was to, of course, take the before shot. We both removed whatever makeup we had on to start from scratch with a blank canvas.

I brought along my favourite products from my makeup kit and unpacked everything. Annika and I both took a look through, picked out some things and we got going!

One of my absolute favourite inventions in the makeup world is Palettes. I have always thought that Palettes are a good investment simply because of the way they jam pack so much into one little space. They offer a lot of variety in colours and options for different looks. In this photo you can see tw of my absolute favourite neutral palettes, the Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette and the much hyped up Urban Decay Naked Palette. A problem I often have with palettes, though, is that there is often those colours that I just really don't like, nor would ever wear. It's getting more and more common these days for brands to be selling their eyeshadows in individual pans with empty palettes so that you can make your own. A brand I adore doing this with is, of course, M.A.C. They sell both eyeshadow and blush palettes to be filled individually whcih gives you 100% control over what you choose to be included. My favourite eyeshadow is a M.A.C one. It's a warm gold called Amber Lights and I think it is just the most gorgeous colour, perfect for summer for a bright golden eye, or for winter paired with a dark berry lip.

If these are a little on the pricier side, Chi Chi also make some amazing ones. Each one has 12 shadows and they range from dark purple tones, to more naturals and they all go for $22.95AUD. Hint: one of them is a perfect direct dupe for the Urban Decay Naked 1.

Matilde wears:
  1. Benefit PoreFessional face primer
  2. M.A.C Studio Fix foundation in NW10
  3. Nars Contour/Highlight duo in Paloma
  4. M.A.C Fleur Power blush
  5. Nars Copacabana cream Illuminator
  6. Benefit Gimme Brow in Medium/Deep
  7. M.A.C paintpot in Bare Study
  8. M.A.C Gingersnap eyeshadow (all over the lid)
  9. M.A.C Bronze eyeshadow (blended into the crease)
  10. M.A.C All That Glitters (inner corner and highlighting brow bone)
  11. Rimmel Scandaleyes Kohl Kajal pencil eyeliner in 001 Black
  12. Benefit Bad Gal Lash mascara
  13. M.A.C prep and prime lip primer
  14. M.A.C lipiner in Nightmoth
  15. M.A.C lipstick in Gospel

Annika wears:
  1. W7 Camera Ready face primer
  2. Maybelline Fit Me concealer in 01 Ivory
  3. Maybelline Fit Me foundation in 120  
  4. Maybelline Fit Me pressed powder in 120
  5. Maybelline concealer in 01 Ivory
  6. Nars Contour/Highlight duo in Paloma
  7. Nars blush in Orgasm
  8. The Body Shop Brush On Radiance pearl highlight
  9. M.A.C paint pot in Bare Study
  10. M.A.C eyeshadow in Amber Lights
  11. M.A.C eyeshadow in All That Glitters
  12. Rimmel Scandaleyes kohl kajal pencil eyeliner in 005 Nude
  13. Modelsprefer Skinny Liner in Black
  14. Rimmel Scandaleyes Retro Glam Mascara
  15. Maybelline Super Stay Lipliner in Red
  16. M.A.C lipsticks in Lady Danger and Ruby Woo

Together we looked.. pretty damn fabulous.

  1. Crop top - Topshop
  2. Skirt - UniQlo
  3. Shoes - Dr Martens
  4. Hat - Gift from my parents
  5. Glasses - Alex Perry

It's incredibly hard to make a comment on my favourite foundations and powders since I have so far tried one that works with my skintone. Australian pharmacies and department stores sell a great number of different foundation and powder options, but since I am pale (with pink undertones) I have never managed to find one that foes light enough for me.

The problem in Australia is that no shops or companies stock the lightest shades here simply since they don't think people will buy them. (is there a stereotype that every Australian is tanned or..) I use the M.A.C studio fix fluid foundation in the lightest shade - NW10, and for powder I use the Mineralise Skin Finish in the shade Light. The non high end foundation I've had in the closest match to my skin was the Rimmel Match Perfection in the shade Light Porcelain with a translucent powder, but that was slightly too dark. 

For contour, highlight and blush I only have a couple of recommendations. Contouring has been a relatively new experience for me. I was never any good at it, and was incredible intimidated by the whole thing when I first got into makeup. The powders I use for contour I use are the M.A.C Mineralise Skinfinish in Medium/Deep or for when I want to look "A little more Kimmy-K" (as the ever gorgeous young woman working at Mecca Maxima said) the Nars contour/highlight duo in Paloma

For blush, I hhave a tonne of suggestions purely based on colour preferences. My all time favourite blush is the M.A.C Peaches & Cream from the Sharon Osbourne collection earlier this year. This collection (along with the Kelly Osbourne collection) have both finished up, so it's no longer available. Benefit have a great reputation for their Boxed Blushes (mostly Coralista, Rocketeur and Dandelion), but I think their best blush is actually their most recent cream to powder Majorette blush. It's a bright orange colour - which would often disconcert me - but it's so light and summery and beautiful. Other favourites are of course the Nars Orgasm and M.A.C's Fleur Power. Even though Orgasm is a gorgeous shade, my skin is too pink for it (the pink undertones cancel out the pink of the actual blush, Gah!) so it just ends up looking more like a gold highlight on me which is of course why I leapt at the chance to use it on Annika. The angst when I realised I couldn't pull it off.

Oh the angst.

I mentioned above that my all time favourite eyeshadow was the M.A.C eyeshadow in Amber Lights. Eyeshadows are the kinds of products that I can never get enough of, and I have too many favourites to mention all of them. However when it comes to Mascara and Eyeliner I do have two products that I think stand above a lot of the others I have tried. With Mascara, I have tried my fair share (is owning 15 Mascaras a little excessive? Yes? Maybe? Just a little bit?) However the one that I truly think stands out is the Benefit Bad Gal Lash. I was a user of the cult classic They're Real for a long time, but after I tried Bad Gal Lash, I just never went back there. I do dabble in my two M.A.C mascaras, but I always come back. I really do not like thin, plastic wands, and this Mascara has a giant wand made of bristles and it picks up so much product and spreads it evenly over the lashes to define and lengthen. 

I think my ultimate Holy Grail eye product would be, without a doubt, the Rimmel Scandaleyes Kohl Kajal Waterproof eyeliner pencil in 001 Black. I wear eyeliner pretty much every day in my waterline and tightline, and this is the one I find myself reaching for every day. As someone with sensitive skin and a sensitive waterline, I hate eyeliner pencils that are hard to put on, or where you need to apply too much pressure. This one, however, is perfect. It glides on perfectly with little effort and seriously does not move all day, but is easy to get rid of in the evenings. I've already been through two of these, and I have two in use at the moment!

Honourable mention: Maybelline Colour Tattoo cream eyeshadows. Well worth the hype - well worth the money. Well worth a try! (Hint: their shade Barely Branded is a nice dupe for M.A.C's paintpot in Bare Study)

Finally, we have lip products. Lip products are one of those things I could really talk about for hours on end. First and foremost I want to mention my lip primer. Using the M.A.C Prep&Prime lip primer has really changed lipstick for me. My lips are almost permanently chapped, but when I use this primer, it smoothes my lips out in seconds, and it means that the colour used comes out smooth and perfect and absolutely flawless.

I am not a big wearer of lip glosses or lip tints. Mostly I stick to my Lipsticks. M.A.C's Matte lipsticks will always have a very special place in my heart, as all of my favourites are from that line. My favourite nude is Honey Love, my favourite red is Lady Danger and my favourite Berry is Rebel. However another line that I believe is worth all the hype it gets are the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains and the Revlon Matte Balms. These come in a wide range of exceptionally pigmented colour that look perfect and stay all day! My favourites are Crush and Honey, as well as Standout.

Did I leave out one of your absolute favourite products? Is there a makeup product you want to see reviewed? Do you want to try something, but aren't yet game? Let me know! Leave a comment on this post, or send me a tweet and I'll do my best to check them all out!

Until next time, stay cute little powderpuffs.

                                                                                         xoxo Matilde Elisabeth

Sunday, 9 November 2014

With November Comes Christmas Collections - M.A.C Heirloom Collection Review

Hello there, little powderpuff!

Last week I said I would start with my first review! I then said maybe I would start with a product that wasn't M.A.C. I have good news and I have bad news.
The good news is that I have a review- the bad news is that it's M.A.C.

But lets be serious, when is M.A.C ever bad news?

Never. The answer is never.

Now that November is coming around, Winter/Holiday collections are starting to be released. Over the past few weeks, NARS, Too Faced, Chanel, Bobbi Brown - you name it. They have started to release either new products, or gift sets just in time for the Holiday rush.

On Monday November 3rd M.A.C released their Holiday collection titled Heirloom. The collection includes three Palettes of eight eyeshadows; three Eye Bags that include one eyeshadow duo, one eyeliner and one mascara (each set includes different shades of each); three Lip Bags that each include one lipstick, one lip liner and one lip glass; three Brush Sets (all of which have a brush that remarkably resembles the ever famous and ever wonderful M.A.C 217); Two face Palettes which each include three eyeshadows, one pressed powder, one cream colour base and two lipsticks; two exclusive eye and lip bags which each include a quad of Mineralize eyeshadows, one lipglass and one lipstick; two 'Viva Glamourous' keepsakes - one including a bag that holds in it both of the Rihanna collection lipsticks, the other being a palette of eight lipsticks. Other than the gift collections (most of which include a glittery bag, or glittery packaging) there are individual products including the following:

  • two blushes
  • two pigments
  • eight eyeshadows
  • two fluidline gel eyeliners
  • two eyepencils
  • one power eyepencil
  • five lipsticks
  • five lipglasses
  • three nail laquers
Please note that in the individual products, palettes and sets some are exclusive shades while others are part of the permanent collection.

There were so many incredible possibilities in the store when I went there, but over the past week, I picked up three sets to do a quick review on.

Starting with the palette:

The packaging of this collection is one of my favourites I have seen this holiday season. Each of the palettes comes styled like this (including the face palettes, but exclusing the Viva Glam lipstick palette) but each are different in colour - White, Silver or Black. They are decorated with an antique bust of a woman as a broach in the centre, covered in glitter with pearls around the edge.

The palette is closed with a magnet, and the M.A.C symbol is just below the seam.

The palette that I chose was called the Beige Eyes Palette - the others are the Smoky Eyes Palette and the Plum Eyes Palette. It has neutral colours from a matte light beige to a matte dark brown. Each palette has a combination of Mattes, Lustres, Velvets, Satins and Frosts, which means that each of the three options has great diversity of finishes and can be used to create many different looks. Each palette also comes with a brush - a Pencil brush for applying the pigment all over the lid, then another for blending.

From left: Her Mistress (Matte), Sweet Sovereign (Lustre), Faire Maiden (Lustre), Tempting (Lustre), Omega (Matte), Quintessential (Frost), Mystery (Satin), Night Whisper (Velvet)

As usual, the Matte shades don't have as much pigmentation as the Lustres, Satins or Frosts - the lighter shades in particular. Personally, I prefer Frost shadows most and so I was slightly disappointed that this palette has majority Lustres, but they swatch well - as M.A.C shadows always do - and each of the individual shades are nice and very usable. The colours are pigmented and easily blendable and this palette specifically is very diverse and can be used to create subtle nude looks for the day time using Her Mistress or Sweet Sovereign over the lid with a warm colour in the crease such as  Tempting, and with the addition of Mystery and Night Whisper also into the crease and blended out, they can be transformed into a smokier nighttime look. 

Next comes the lip bag:

Each of the lip bags comes with a white glitter and pearl makeup bag that are the perfect size for carrying makeup in a bag for every day use. These are on the same theme as the packaging for the Palettes, except the bust of the woman is on the zipper and the pearls line the seam around the opening. Each bag has one large interior with a small pocket on the side. The lip bags came in three different selections - Red Lip, Nude Lip, Coral Lip.

The bag I selected was the Red Lip bag which included the classic M.A.C matte lipstick Ruby Woo. Both the lipliner and Lipglass are also called Ruby Woo, and it is the first time the shade has been released in these different formulas. The Bullet is patterned differently to how they usually are, with a matte black case with black patent spots and the brand name around the rim and the lipliner is the same, while the lip glass has the red spots just below the lid. 

From left: Ruby Woo Lipglass, Ruby Woo Lipstick, Ruby Woo Lipliner

Each of these products can be used together. The liner can be used beneath the lipstick or the lipglass as it builds a perfect matte foundation. Each one is heavily pigmented and the only differences between them is the formula. I have never been a particularly large fan of lipglosses of any kind purely because of the formula and texture (I've had long hair for the majority of my life and sticky lipgloss + long hair + wind = sticky, sparkly, glossy nightmare.) The formula of this lipglass is sticky, but it is one of the more manageable lipglosses I have tried and thankfully it isn't messy. I find matte lipsticks tend to be quite drying, but so far I haven't had this problem with Ruby Woo, even if I forgo lip primer*.  

*Powderpuff tip! Don't have a lip primer? Use a small amount of lip balm or chapstick right before applying the lipstick. If the balm isn't too thick in consistency it can work wonders at helping the lipstick or lipliner glide on easily for a smoother coverage. You can also use lipbalm as an eyeprimer! It can help your eyeshadow stay put for longer if you dab it on first with a finger.

Finally is the Eye Bag:

The diversity in different products was amazing and these three products are really all you need to make an effortless smoky eye and in truth mine have received a lot of love already. The bag includes the Powerpoint Eyepencil in Stubborn Brown, the In Extreme Dimension mascara in black and an exclusive eyeshadow duo all put together in a black bag exactly like the one in the lip bag.

From left: Stubborn Brown Eyepencil, Stolen Moment, Just Gleaming

These shadows are so pigmented. I have been searching online and I cannot find what finish they are, but to me they have the pigmentation and shimmer of a frost shadow (is this why I like them so much? Probably.) Stolen Moment is a rich chocolate brown with silver undertones (if you are familiar with M.A.C eyeshadows, think Satin Taupe but deeper in colour), while Just Gleaming is a stunning off white highlight that reminds me somewhat of the Mac pigment Naked. These can be used together or individually. My favourite way of using this set is by blending Stolen Moment all over the lid and under the lower lashline while using Just Gleaming in the inner corner, blending it into the lower lashline as well and using just a tad as a brown bone highlight (this shade could even be used as a highlight on the cheekbone, if you are game for that much shimmer that is,) then using the eyeliner in the waterline and tightline and finishing it off with the mascara.

Here is a photo taken from my instagram of me wearing the look I just described:

It's quick and easy to do as you don't need to worry so much about blending different colours through the crease and socket and it makes brown and green eyes in particular stand out.

In my own personal opinion the Eye Bag was the best part of the Holiday collection for this year, but you should check it out for yourselves and see what takes your fancy! You can check out these products on the M.A.C website or drop in to your closest M.A.C counter or store, but remember! This is a limited collection and I know it's been selling out pretty quick!

Until next week (when I shall try harder not to review a M.A.C product) stay cute, little powderpuffs.

xoxo Matilde Elisabeth

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Introductions and Teacups (An Obvious Combination)

Hello there, little powderpuff!
My name is Matilde Elisabeth, and I am one of those new chaps who has decided to have a go at this whole blogging thing, and was convinced to follow through on that idea by my two gorgeous and wonderful friends, Katie and Annika.

My main purpose with this page is reviews and ideas revolving mostly around makeup and fashion. I am not a makeup artist, nor am I a professional stylist, but over the past nineteen odd years of my life, I like to think I have picked up a piece of wisdom or two that I would love to pass on. However I do have makeup artist dreams, and maybe that is a journey this blog can follow me on.

On the frontier of the fashion I would like to discuss in my blog, lets start with what I am wearing:

  1. Hat - Topshop
  2. Mickey Mouse hands CropTop - H&M
  3. Black highwaisted shorts - Supré (and about 5 years old it's a miracle I've hardly grown since I was 14- I swear they fit me better now than they did then)
  4. Shoes - Cherry Red Patent Dr. Martens
  5. Bag - Kaboodle Design
Anyway, moving onwards. As previously mentioned, I'm nineteen years old and I live in Sydney, Australia. I have yet to begin my studies and am taking a year off between high school and studying to work (receptionist lyf). Right now I am happy and content to practice my hand at cosmetics while attempting to navigate this whole adulthood thing - it's kinda odd. Suddenly people call me ma'am? And I get called a Lady? Being an adult is a somewhat absurd and bizarre experience.

It's pronounced Matilda, by the way.

Now to my intentions for this little page I have here. I want to write reviews of makeup products (and I would love love love for anyone to tell me of a product they would like to see reviewed and I would most definitely try it out and write up my thoughts. Think of me as your very own human testing subject.), as well as giving little Powderpuff Tips and talking fashion and life along the way.

Makeup products used:

Face -
  1. Primer - Benefit Porefessional
  2. Concealer - M.A.C Pro Longwear in the shade NW15
  3. Foundation - M.A.C Studio Fix Fluid in the shade NW10
  4. Powder - M.A.C Mineralise Skinfinish in the shade Light
  5. Bronzer - M.A.C Mineralise Skinfinish in the shade Medium/Dark*
  6. Blush - M.A.C Peaches and Cream (Sharon Osbourne collection)
Eyes - 
  1. Base - M.A.C Camel Coat
  2. Eyeshadow - M.A.C Soft Brown (all over the lid), Embarked (in the crease), Antiqued (outer corner, blended through the crease and brought under the outside of the eye), Amber Lights (inner corner blended under the eye with Antiqued)
  3. Highlight - M.A.C Naked Pigment
  4. Eyeliner - Rimmel Scandaleyes Kohl Kajal in 001 Black
  5. Mascara - Benefit Bad Gal Lash
Brows -
  1. Brow gel - Benefit GimmeBrow in the shade Light/Medium
Lips -
  1. Lipliner - M.A.C Nightmoth
  2. Lipstick - M.A.C Gospel
*Powderpuff tip! If you are looking for a subtle bronzer to use for contouring, try using the powder you usually go for but a few shades dark. It creates a subtle and buildable colour for a more natural look.

If you look carefully at that list, you might see a certain brand that I like. Just a little bit. A teeny weeny little tiny bit. Maybe. Kinda. I need to go to M.A.C rehab. You know what they say - the first step is admitting you have a problem.

For tonight I believe that is all. I am never quite sure what to say as an introduction type situation, so I will leave you here, with the intention for being back soon with my first review! Maybe I'll start with a product that isn't M.A.C? Lets see if that's possible-

Stay cute, little powderpuffs.

xoxo Matilde Elisabeth