Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Store Review - IHerb

Hello Princesses!

Today I'm going to be reviewing a slightly weird store, but a super handy store nonetheless, which is Iherb! Iherb is a really interesting store that sells Supplements, Herbs, Bath and Beauty, Skincare, Grocerys, Sports and Pet goods. I've personally only shopped in the Beauty section, but I hear that the Grocery section is also amazing. The Beauty section contains the cheapest ELF, Real Techniques and Physicians Formula products that you can find in New Zealand. If you live outside of New Zealand then your prices are probably lower, and therefore you probably don't need to shop here, who knows!

Price Comparison
The Elf Undereye Setting Powder is $3USD ($3.69NZD) plus shipping off Iherb. Or $10NZD from my local K-Mart which is the only place that sells ELF in NZ. Obviously if I only want one product I'll drive down and buy it locally, but if I want  to buy bulk ELF, IHerb is the cheapest way!

Shipping and Packaging
I chose the second cheapest shipping, which was the tracked DHL. Choosing the tracked option is always the best since you know where your package is, and this is a very very cheap option at $8USD! It took one week to get to me which was wonderful, but I was NOT happy with the method of packaging to keep my products safe. They literally packed the box with the products, and chucked a loosely scrunched piece of paper on top! I didn't have any glass products or anything like that, but if I had, they wouldn't be very safe :C
I limited myself to three brands that were hard to find locally, ELF, Real Techniques and Physicians Formula.

First up are my ELF basics! Each of these products were $3USD, which is super cheap! I'm really happy with the overall quality of the ELF products and I've written up a quick review of each! Let me know if there is anything that you want full review on!

This is an amazing product - I can totally see why this is so hyped and raved about! I've had mine for only a couple of months, and have already hit pan in the gel! The powder is a great crease colour, but I can't use it on my brows since I have the medium colour (Dark was out of stock).

I love this blush too, a quick brush of the product will pick up quite a lot, so it's really necessary to tap the brush quickly before applying, but for $3 and the beautiful big colour range I will definitely be purchasing more!

I like this blush, but it is a little bit of work to blend! The pump disperses WAY too much product, but I do hear that this is a dupe for a Makeup Forever blush! Either way, it's a great product for a super cheap price!
Next up are Real Techniques! There are no stores that sell Real Techniques in New Zealand (that I know of!) and the easiest and cheapest place to buy them is IHerb! The separate brushes cost $9.99 and the Brush Set cost $29.99 which is a very reasonable price for brushes that are so good! I'm totally in love with all of these brushes, they're totally worth the price!
Lastly I have two products from Physicians Formula. I picked these two products because of the adorable packaging, but honestly the packaging is more of a pain than it is cute.

The colours in this blush are really beautiful, but the blush is just so powdery and chalky that it doesn't look good on the skin. It's a little hard to get the blush to pop since it's not so pigmented, it's such a weird blush. I really don't like it and don't recommend paying over $10 for it.

I like this powder even less than the blush. The light colour is good for my face colour and the darkest colour is good for contouring, but it's just so hard to pick up either colour without touching the peachy shades in between. It's really powdery and has a lot of fallout and in all honestly I wouldn't pay $3 for this.
What I Love
- Cheap, fast tracked shipping
- Discounts for first timers
- Discounts for larger orders (bulk buying)
- Cheap prices
- Restocks very quickly

What I Don't Love
- Bad shipping packaging

Final Thoughts
I'm quite 50/50 with this store. Putting aside how much I love the Real Technique and ELF products in comparison to how much I dislike the Physicians Formula products, I quite enjoyed shopping with IHerb. I really wish that the shipping packaging was a lot better though, because I'm really cautious about grabbing other products that might break in the post. But then again the ELF products are $3 and it's just so tempting!

If you do end up making an order through IHerb and you want to take $10 off your first order you can use my code FQB347 to get the discount!

(Full disclosure, the coupon code is an affiliate code, and you can actually get the discount without using the code automatically by being a first time purchaser. However if you want to support me, please use my coupon code! If you don't want to, don't. No big deal ^.^)

Monday, 29 September 2014

Manicure Monday - Midnight Sparkles

Hello Princesses!

Today I have a really lovely manicure with a deep midnight blue jelly polish - Color Club's Blue-topia and and a beautiful silver glitter polish - Maybellines Sequins! You can see that my names are getting less and less inventive.
I love this manicure, but Blue-Topia is really difficult to get off your fingers without staining everything blue, and I mean EVERYTHING. I stained my nice white top, tabletop and ALL of my fingers blue taking that polish off, but I'm so in love with the colour and jelly finish!

Do you Princesses have a less annoying dupe for Color Club Blue-Topia?

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Review & Giveaway - Annies' Way; Arbutin + Hyaluronic Acid Mask

Hello Princesses!

Today I'm going to be talking about an amazing jelly mask that I first heard of through Lindy from Bubzbeauty - the Arbutin + Hyaluronic Acid Brighting Jelly Mask from Annie's Way! I was kindly sent this product by YesStyle and this is one of the cheapest and easiest ways to purchase legitimate Annie's Way masks since they tubs are quite heavy they often cost quite a bit to ship to New Zealand. YesStyle offers free international shipping for orders over $25USD, and in September are offering a free spatula with the purchase of the Jelly Masks, and a free Jelly Mask or Sheet Mask sample with any order over $17USD.
Before anyone tries to call me out on fake sponsored posts, you can check out my previous un-sponsored reviews of YesStyle from 2 years ago, here, here and here. *sassy finger wiggle* I don't have time for fake paid reviews.
The mask is packaged in a beautiful pastel printed paper wrapping with English translation of the Mandarin instructions, which is great because I am absolutely terrible at reading Mandarin. The mask is made in Taiwan, my boyfriends home!
The packaging is massive, but very practical. It's made of plastic so it's lightweight, and won't break if you drop it. It also comes with a thin plastic covering between the product and the cap so that the mask won't spill into the cap. The mask is super thick and literally like soft jelly, so you can tip the mask over without it spilling out!
The mask had a safety seal so that you know it hasn't been opened, and it came with the spatula to apply the mask with. You will actually need the spatula to get the mask off too, so it's extra awesome that YesStyle are offering this free as their monthly promotion!

"Revitalizing jelly masks treat skin to continuous moisture combined with a whitening effect to minimize dark spots and even out skin tone for a fair and translucent complexion. For a weekly pampering session, spread a dollop of mask evenly on cleansed and toned face and leave on for 30 minutes before scraping off. Wipe face with tissue after removing mask and rinse thoroughly with water.

  • Whitening, moisturizing, minimizes fine lines, leaves skin radiantly bright.
  • Direction of Use: 1. Clean face and apply toner on the skin as base. 2. Apply Jelly Mask approximately thickness 0.3~0.5 cm evenly by using a spatula. 3. After 30 minutes, remove the jelly mask by scraping gently from outside to inside. ( It will be more effective if scrape forcibly. Especially the jelly mask has softened the blackheads and acne. You will be able to scrape it all out easily. 4. Wipe off with tissue paper after you scrape it all out. 5. Repeat the same action few times, and rinse with water. Apply moisturizer or paper mask as what you usually use. Use twice a week, or as needed.
  • Attention: Rinse with water immediately if you feel uncomfortable in the beginning of use the product.
  • Warmest Reminder: For sensitive skin user, use only for 15minutes for first time, and follow by 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Pack Size - 250ml" (1)
  • The mask literally looks like jelly on my face! It's also very cooling and I can feel a slight tingling feeling while using the mask, though it's not at all painful like the Glamglow mask was for me!

    These are the immediate results of before and after the mask was used. You'd probably have to zoom to see the results, but my skin looks more hydrated and my pores appear a little smaller. There is a very small difference!
    Here are the results after one month of use. I'm currently massively breaking out on my chin due to a new serum that I'm trialling (dam you, Shiseido Ultimate serum!) but there's not much I can do about that. I found that the mask lightened some of the smaller scars, but didn't really make my face whiter. It did make it brighter for a short period of time, but if I missed one session of the mask then the brightness would also stop. I found that the mask hydrated my skin a lot, so it plumped out the finer wrinkles on my forehead and mouth, while also helping to remove some of the dead skin from the acne around my chin.
     Cheek comparison
     Forehead Comparison
     Chin Comparison
    Chin Makeup Comparison. This is where you can see my favorite difference, since it was taken midway through my trial (before my breakout). Makeup always gets caught in the super gross acne on my chin. Exfoliation and micro-dermabrasion didn't help, but the mask absolutely, truly helped. I wouldn't recommend it if it didn't.
    What I Love
    -  Immediately brightens skin
    - Hydrates skin (thus improving fine lines from dehydration)
    - Smells lightly and pleasantly of lemons
    - Easy to apply and remove
    - Great practical packaging
    - Lovely cooling feeling

    What I Don't Love
    - Usually need to purchase Spatula separately, which is silly since you do need it to use the mask effectively.

    Final Thoughts
    I really love this mask! I wasn't particularly expecting to like it as much as I do, even though I'd heard Bubz raving about it in a couple of Vlogs and favorite video's! I think that the mask works really well and provides immediate brightening results, but mostly that it really hydrates the skin and plumps it up which helps hide the appearance of fine lines. I'll definitely be using this whole tub, and trying a different version next time! ^.^

    Thanks so much to YesStyle for sending this product for me to review!

    You can win your very own Jelly Mask by entering my giveaway! This giveaway is open internationally too so anyone can enter! (:
    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Friday, 26 September 2014

    First Impressions - Yves Saint Laurent Youth Liberator Foundation - B20

    Hello Princesses!

    Today I'm going to be talking about my First Impression of the Yves Saint Laurent Youth Liberator Foundation in B20! I'm not sure why I was given B20 when they actually make a B10 shade (maybe NZ doesn't stock it) but I was given this shade last year! >< The jar was quite small so I only got 2 wears out of it and then lost the pottle for a while. But now I've found it so I'll tell you what I think of it! ^.^

    What Is It?
    "Yves Saint Laurent presents a revolution in foundation: Youth Liberator Serum Foundation offers medium-to-full coverage and skin-firming benefits. It also offers 24-hour hydration and SPF 20 coverage.
    This anti-aging foundation is infused with our award winning serum, Forever Youth Liberator Serum. Youth Liberator Serum Foundation combines 24 hours of nonstop hydrating properties to smooth and nourish the skin with our patented Color Tune-Up Complex to correct dullness giving you a newer, brighter complexion. From fair to dark complexions, Youth Liberator Serum Foundation corrects, unifies and evens all skin tones, giving the skin an instantly younger appearance.

    Available in 10 universal shades. SPF 20 broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection." (1)

    The shade B20 is a little dark for my skin tone unfortunately, it does blend and sheer out to be workable, but it's not the best colour. It provides a great medium coverage and covers pores and minor scars quite well as you can see in the comparison photos! It doesn't have the best oil controlling capabilities, so I would need to blot my face after around 5 hours of wear.

    This foundation is infused with the amazing Youth Liberator Serum (that I cannot afford) and it honestly made my skin feel amazing while I was wearing it, and also after I took it off. I love wearing makeup products that make my skin feel better instead of just camouflaging my terrible skin! It also smells amazing which is a total plus!
    This photo shows the colour difference a little more, my chest is the same colour as the rest of my body (yes, including my arms and legs!) so it obviously looks really weird to just have my face a different colour to the rest of my body. And no, I'm not interesting in fake tanning or bronzing my entire body to match my face.
    Would I Purchase This Product?
    Maybe in the lighter colour if I had the chance to try it! B10 looks like it's a touch lighter and yellower than the B20 so it could potentially be ideal! It's an amazing and expensive foundation, but I would be able to justify the price because it has the serum infused in the foundation and it makes my skin look and feel lovely! ^.^

    Have you Princesses tried this foundation before? What were your thoughts?  
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