Saturday, March 31, 2012

Essence Stay With Me lipgloss review

I was in Shoppers Drug Mart taking advantage of their $3.99 Revlon Lip Butter sale when I noticed the Essence display at the end of the cosmetics aisle. I'd clean forgot that Essence Cosmetics were rolling out in Canada! I've come across the brand in my visits to drugstores in America but never really paid them much heed, but hey since I had time to kill I decided to start swatching some of the lip products...
These things were pigmented!And insanely cheap!! $2.99 for a lipgloss!! Nothing in the entire display was over a fiver!
In the end I grabbed 4 of the Stay With Me glosses and one of their lipsticks, but I am still on the hunt for more of their products as they will make excellent package fillers.
Without further ado, here are some swatches:
 Swatches from left: My Favourite Milkshake; Me & My Ice Cream; Candy Bar; Kiss Kiss Kiss:

Essence sez:
"the name of this lipgloss could not be more appropriate: if you try it once, you'll never want to give it up again! the color-intensive texture is so wonderfully creamy and durable – without leaving a sticky feeling behind, that it's simply irresistible. the special shape of the precision applicator allows an effortless application.
six trendy colors are waiting to awaken those spring feelings and invite you to a creative styling session!"
Nunu sez:
Ah, ja ze Germans know how to make 'em well. I could easily believe that these were high end lip glosses that cost tens of dollars instead of the paltry $2.99 I paid for them. The gel-like formula is non-sticky, moisturising and lasts around 2-3 hours depending on what you do. Pigmentation is awesome but darker ladies might want to avoid the lighter shades because the milkiness does tend to accentuate lip lines. These glosses also have a yummy sweet fruity scent.
The hourglass shaped applicator is quite unique and something I've never seen before, it works rather well by hugging the curve of your lip and I much prefer it over brush applicators or the MAC doe foot applicator.
For $2.99 you shouldn't walk, you should RUN to your nearest Shoppers Drug Mart and nab them all before the word spreads xD.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Butter London Spring Summer 2012 collection swatch and review

Nail Polish Canada generously sent me 2 polishes from Butter London's Spring Summer 2012 collection for review. These guys seriously need to add "There is no charge for awesomeness and attractiveness" on their checkout page. They have an awesome selection of polishes, awesome prices and awesome service. Every time I place an order with them, I'll get a tracking number by that afternoon and by the next day my order will be sitting in my mailbox. Awesome. I'm not even singing their praises because they send me a polish every now and then to be reviewed, I genuinely like them as a company, I love that they're local and happily give them my money.
Butter London's Spring Summer 2012 collection consists of 5 polishes and I received Bossy Pants and Disco Biscuit for review. Butter London polishes are 3 free, cruelty free, vegan and fast drying.

Bossy Boots is a pale dusty pistachio green creme, it is darker than OPI Strange Tides but not as dark as Revlon Spanish Moss or Essie Sew Psyched.
Formula was flawless, no cuticle drag, no gloopinesst. I did 2 thin coats here but 1 medium thick coat will also give full opacity. This wore for 4 days with some tip wear. I wore this shade to Vancouver Fashion Week xD

Disco Biscuit is a raspberry jelly with pink and blue micro glitter. This was 3 coats and there was still some visible nail line. Due to the micro glitter, it dried gritty and required 2 coats of top coat to smooth out. The formula wasn't the easiest to work with as the glitter makes the jelly clumpy and thick. I had to shake the bottle to settle the clumps several times during application. It doesn't look like much once its dried, but after a top coat or two, the beautiful squishy jelly finish comes out and my nails look like sparkly hard boiled sweets. Eeeee! SO MUCH LOVE!
Each polish retails for $17 and the entire Spring Summer 2012 collection is available from Nail Polish Canada. You can also win all 5 polishes from the collection by entering Nail Polish Canada's contest here.
Check out their HOT DEALS section for polishes on sale at up to 40% less! Enter "HOT10" for an extra 10% off anything from that section!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Nunu's Kitchen - Ultimate mentaiko kimchi udon

Because it's really THAT good!!
This makes about 4 servings (or 1 1/2 if you live in my household -______-")

  • 4 things of Udon - I like the frozen ones, they have better texture and taste.
  • About 200g of fresh mentaiko (Japanese marinated pollock roe). Use more or less depending on your love of mentaiko. We like LOTS of it xD
  • Kimchi - amount also depending on your love of kimchi.
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic butter/regular butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp cream
  • 1 tbsp mayonnaise. You should probably use Japanese mayonnaise like Kewpie but I just used Hellman's 1/2 The Fat Mayonnaise because that was all I had xD.
  • 1 tsp granulated dashi.
  • 1 stalk green onion, chopped
  • Toasted nori for decoration
  • Boil water and cook udon according to instructions. Drain when done. I usually also run the noodles through cold water to wash off any starch and to stop it from cooking further.
  • Remove mentaiko from casing and mix with mayonnaise, dashi, melted butter and cream.
  • Heat up some oil in a pan, once the oil is hot, add the udon to the pan. Stir fry the noodles for a bit. Yes "a bit" is a unit of time. Basically just enough to heat up the noodles again xD.
  • Add kimchi and mix well with udon.
  • Add mentaiko, turn off heat and mix until everything is....mixed.
  • Add chopped green onion and toasted nori before serving.
  • Watch as significant other shovels your portion into his mouth.
  • Whine.
Judgy face cat is judging you.
Bonus NOTD - Wet n Wild in Back Alley Deals (Thank you D!)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Official Judgy Face FOTD

I'm not original enough to come up with my own colour combinations so I copied D's EOTD. Hee! She is probably giving me judgy face right now xD.
We're trying to get Jian to do the same EOTD so it can become the official judgy face EOTD. Y'all probably have no clue what I'm babbling on about so I'm just going to shut up now.
 Products used: L'Oreal Color Infallible in Sahara Treasure, Bronze Goddess and Burning Black; Maybelline Blush in Pressworthy Pink; Revlon Lip Butter in Sugar Plum; Nars Laguna; Armani Luminous Silk foundation; Revlon Colorstay Creme Gel Liner in black; and CoverGirl Lash Blast Fusion mascara
 Lid = Sahara Treasure; Outer V = Bronze Goddess; Crease = Burning Black

I also had my hair cut again! What do you guys think? It's "funkier" now, or so I lamely tell myself xD
Also I got mail =^.^=
Sasa mask haul of epic proportions plus more love from my UK smuggler V! My order arrived so fast this time that it has restored my faith, albeit temporarily, in Sasa. I made my order on March 8 and it arrived on March 14! Perhaps it's cos I paid via Paypal this time.
Trying out some new brands of masks as MBDs have been getting pricier -_____-". The BeautyMate Anti-Acne masks (green and white box in the back) are friggen awesome!! It really does lessen the redness and swelling of acne overnight! This is my second box already!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

My Kiehl's skincare regime and review

I've been consistently using the Kiehl's skincare products that I received from their PR event for the last 6 months or so, now that some of the products are nearing empty I thought it was high time for me to get a review up xD. Cue the longest review post ever.

Ultra Facial Oil Free Toner
"Our Ultra Facial Oil-Free Toner is formulated to visibly reduce excess oil on skin’s surface, while leaving it instantly fresh and healthy looking.  Made with Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract and Antarcticine to soothe and hydrate skin, our non-drying alcohol-free formula gently removes any remaining residue, dirt and oil without stripping skin of vital moisture. PH-balanced, and tested for safety and gentleness.  Oil-free, paraben-free, fragrance-free, colorant-free."
Nunu sez:
A refreshing toner that is awesome for Summer. In the Winter it is sadly lacking as it simply does not have adequate hydration. Unlike other Western brand toners that I've tried, this one does not make my face tight or weirdly greasy and I love it for that reason.
All in all I would repurchase this when I run out just for use during the Summer months.

Ultra Facial Oil-Free Lotion
"Our Ultra Facial Oil-Free Lotion is a lightweight moisturizing lotion that helps visibly reduce excess oil on skin’s surface, leaving a shine-free and balanced appearance. It is non-greasy, and retains essential moisture in skin for a healthier, rebalanced skin barrier. A complex of hydrating ingredients – Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract, Antarcticine and Vitamin E – helps keep skin fresh and healthier looking all day. Oil-free, paraben-free, fragrance-free, colorant-free."
Nunu sez:
This is a lovely cooling gel lotion. I do feel that when I use this in combination with the toner my face greases up slower/less compared to when I was using my regular moisturiser. On application you get a tingly cooling sensation that goes away after a few seconds. I initially hated this feeling because it felt like a burn but I learned to appreciate the cooling feeling in the Summer! I prefer rich, deeply moisturising cream for night time use and I felt this lotion was inadequate in this respect, however, it is sufficient for day use and is a nice base for makeup.

Ultra Facial Oil-Free Cleanser
"This oil-free, quick-lathering cleansing foam thoroughly removes impurities and visibly reduces excess oil on skin’s surface, while leaving skin looking more balanced. With Imperata Cylindrica Root and Lemon Fruit Extracts, our non-stripping, sulphate-free formula leaves skin clean and refreshed without over-drying. Gentle enough for sensitive skin types. Paraben-Free. Silicone-Free. Fragrance-Free. Oil-Free."
Nunu sez:
A basic cream cleanser. A tiny bit creates the thickest foam so this tube is going to last me forever. I use this cleanser once a day in the evenings with my Olay Pro-X cleansing brush and I don't find it too harsh or drying, however, I do have rather oily skin so your mileage might vary. For $25 it's a bit more than what I'm comfortable with paying for a cleanser but considering how long the 150ml will last me, it's something I'm willing to overlook.

Powerful Strength Line Reducing Concentrate
"This Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate is formulated with a high concentration of 10.5% Pure Vitamin C (L-Ascorbic Acid) known for its affinity with skin and its powerful ability to improve the appearance of skin aging. With continued use over time, this treatment has a significant and progressive effect on marionette lines around the mouth and sub-orbital wrinkles in the eye area as well as other facial lines and wrinkles. In addition, skin shows a noticeable improvement in texture and radiance."
Nunu sez:
This is one of Kiehl's most popular and most raved about product. Its effective ingredient is the 10.5% of stabilised Vitamin C in every bottle. Vitamin C prevents you from getting scurvy, aids in the production of collagen and is an antioxidant.
On application, there is a slight warming feeling which goes away after a second or two. After application, skin feels incredibly soft and smooth.
While I don't yet have any marionette lines, I have begun to develop some fine lines around my eyes that don't go away even with sufficient hydration. After using this concentrate for 3 months, I have noticed that the deeper of fine lines are much less visible and lighter ones have even disappeared.
I have one major dislike of this product and that is the amount of silicone it contains. Silicone and its ilk create the appearance of a smoother surface by filling in any voids from wrinkles or uneven skin texture. Makeup primers are silicone based. While perfectly safe for you, I tend to dislike silicone based products because in the process of forming a seal over the skin, they clog pores and trap in dirt and sebum. For someone with oily, acne prone skin, I really do not encourage the use of a silicone base product.
My friend Justine said that this concentrate lightened her scars, unfortunately I did not experience same. I did, however, notice a much brighter complexion overall.
Due to its high silicone level, this product functions really well as a makeup primer. I also noticed it tended to pill when applied after a sheet mask.
I'm undecided as to whether I'll repurchase this product. While it was effective in diminishing under under eye wrinkles, I am rather concerned with how high silicone sits on its ingredient list.
The concentrate sells for a HEFTY $77 in Canada whilst going for a more palatable $56 in America. You figure that one out.

Midnight Recovery Concentrate
"This lightweight, readily-absorbed elixir effectively restores skin’s healthy appearance overnight, resulting in smoother, more radiant complexion by morning. Enriched with Squalane, a botanical lipid similar in molecular structure to natural skin lipids, Evening Primrose Oil, rich in Omega-6 Fatty Acids and Essential moisture to depleted skin. These naturally derived oils instantly penetrate the skin surface to help replenish it. Our recovery concentrate works at night when skin is most receptive to repairing itself from daily aggressors. With skin hydrated, supple and soft, rest assured you can say goodnight to tired-looking skin. Paraben Free. Fragrance Free. Mineral Oil Free."
Nunu sez:
This blend of essential oils has been an absolute savior to my Winter parched skin! I apply about 2 drops to my entire face every night, wait 10-20minutes for it to sink in and then apply my moisturiser. In the morning I wake up with glowing, hydrated skin even despite the heat being on overnight. As it is an oil, it's best used at night. Will definitely repurchase!

Eye Alert
The ultimate solution for eye-area fatigue after a long flight or a long night!
Made with cooling extracts to energize and hydrate the thinner skin of the eye area.
A potent blend of vitamins and Caffeine fights fatigue; helps combat dark circles and puffiness.
With regular use, skin appears strengthened and the look of fine dehydration lines is reduced.
Nunu sez:
I don't suffer from puffiness or excessive dark under eye circles, all I really wanted was a eye cream that provides an extra boost of hydration to the skin around my eye without causing any milia or breakouts. I had previously used the Laneige Eye Designer gel and had to discontinue as it caused tiny white heads and hive-like breakouts to develop on the skin around my eyes. Kiehl's Eye Alert did just that. It is a light, oil free gel with little beads that dissolve as you rub it in. It provided the needed hydration without breaking out the sensitive skin around my eyes. Good for those who are looking for a basic eye cream.

*deep breath*
Overall I really enjoyed the Kiehl's skincare system that was recommended to me. There were some outstanding products like the Midnight Recovery Complex and the Ultra Facial Oil Free trio that I would definitely repurchase. If only the Vitamin C Line-Reducing Concentrate wasn't so heavy on the silicone I would love to continue using it for the effect it had on my fine lines.