Monday, November 28, 2011

My First Glossy Box has Arrived!

Well I received my first ever Glossy Box today, finally!! Talk about a lengthy wait for this to be sent out. It feels as if we've been waiting for these boxes forever.

Anyway, here's some pictures that show how it arrived and what the box contents looked like when it was opened:

The box that was left on my doorstep.

The pink box that was inside the cardboard packaging.

Some pink jelly beans, ribbon and welcome cards on the top when opened.

The tissue paper wrapping.

How the contents of the box looked when opened. The black shredded paper makes it very hard to see the actual items unfortunately.

The contents of this month's box were as follows:

1) Jurlique Purely Age Defying Ultra Firm & Lift Cream (5 ml) - This high performance anti-ageing cream is designed to help promote the regeneration of elastin, collagen and new skin cells. I used to be a big fan of Jurlique products so will enjoy testing this one out.

2) Bio Oil (Full size 60 ml) - A specialist skincare oil that is effective for ageing as well as dehydrated skin, scars, stretch marks and uneven skin tones. I know everybody raves about this product and I've tried to like it but I just can't stand the smell. I'll most likely give this away to a friend.

3) Essie Summer Nail Colour 'Smooth Sailing' (5 ml) - This looks like such a pretty purple which has very fine silver flecks in it.

4) Bobbi Brown Cleansing Oil (15 ml) - A 2-in1 formula that gently removes all traces of makeup and cleanses skin while maintaining natural moisture levels. I'm a bit excited to try this as I've never used anything from Bobbi Brown before.

5) Mirenesse 3D Forever Lip Gloss (Full size 14 gms) - This gloss is filled with botanical moisturisers and antioxidants to give you hydrated and beautifully cushioned lips day and night. I was a bit scared when I opened the cardboard packaging for this gloss as the colour I got is called 'Hot Kiss' which looks like a very dark browny purple in the tube but luckily is a lot less intense when applied and looks like a nice sheer purple which is actually quite wearable.

All in all the fist Glossy Box is definitely worth the $15 fee. The full size Bio Oil is worth this on it's own and the Mirenesse gloss is worth $39.95 so there's no way you can complain about the value.

When I noticed that Bio Oil was a partner I prepared myself for the fact that receiving some of this was going to be useless to me but I'm still very happy with everything else in the box and am especially impressed with the full size lip gloss. And who can forget the pink jelly beans!

What does everyone else think of the first Glossy Box? Does anyone have an opinion on which one of these monthly boxes they think seems to be the best so far??

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Nails of the Week - Butter London 'Trout Pout'

I spied with my little eye today while shopping that you could get a free Butter London nail polish with the December issue of Madison magazine. Well, I just couldn't pass this offer up as I'm always up for a freebie with purchase (as long as it's something I'd normally buy anyway).

There were two colours available and I chose 'Trout Pout' which is a bright salmon pink. The other colour was a neutral brown kind of colour (I didn't check on the name).

I'm not normally a pink kind of girl but I kind of like this one. It would probably look so much better if I wasn't so Irish white.

This is a really nice polish to apply and gives quite good coverage with only two coats. It has a lovely shine to it too so I didn't even bother with a top coat (I like to live dangerously sometimes!) It seemed to dry nice and fast too which is a great bonus.

Oh well, I hope everyone had a lovely weekend. We finally got some sunshine here today which saw us taking bub to the beach for his first time ever. He loved playing in the rock pools and having the waves roll over him while our puppy dogs ran up and down the beach saying hello to everyone they came across. I just love family days when we get some spare time to spend together. It just doesn't happen often enough these days.


Saturday, November 26, 2011

Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Body Gloss

I have always been a huge fan of all the Palmer's cocoa butter products as they are just so nice and simple and make your skin feel and smell gorgeous.

I picked this Body Gloss up mainly to use when going out to give my skin a nice glow and also because I read that it is good to enhance a self tan. I know it's been out for quite a while but as it's a new discovery to me I couldn't help but give my opinion on it after using it for the past couple of months now.

Palmer's Body Gloss is a rich, luxurious cream that illuminates skin with a subtle shimmer. It contains pure Cocoa Butter, Vitamin E and other rich emolients to provide just the right amount of moisture leaving your skin soft and smooth.

As you can see from the above photo, this cream is very shimmery and it highlights the skin wherever it is applied. It can get a little messy and the shimmer can accumulate on the palms of your hands when applying but this is easily washed off once you're done.

As with all the other Palmer's products I have used over time, I have not been disappointed with this one. It has since become a favourite of mine to apply to my arms, legs and chest area before a night out or when it is a summery day and I want to feel all nice and glowing.

The smell is the typical Palmer's cocoa butter smell and the consistency is pretty much the same as any other body moisturiser.

Once on it makes my skin feel very silky smooth but I'm always a little self-conscious as to what I'm wearing or where I sit as the shimmer does have a tendency to rub off a little onto clothing or other fabric. Due to this I wouldn't recommend wearing this if you are in a mostly black outfit.

Has anyone else used this Body Gloss before? If so, what did you think? Are there other similar products you prefer instead?

Friday, November 25, 2011

Pantene Aqua Light

Recently I was lucky enough to be picked as part of the trial team for Beautyheaven for the new Pantene Aqua Light Shampoo & Conditioner range.

This was one Shampoo & Conditioner that I was very interested to try. I have extremely fine hair that gets weighed down by anything. I've never been able to successfully use most hair products due to my hair just not having enough oomph to take it.

Pantene Aqua Light claims to have new clean rinse technology which leaves hair with zero residue and zero weight.

Pantene Aqua Light - Lightweight Nourishing Shampoo
The packaging on this shampoo is great as it's easy to grab and hold in the shower while squeezing the product out and the smell was really nice without being too overpowering.
The shampoo distributed nicely in my hair and foamed up really well but the only downside was that my hair felt very tangled and kind of stuck together after using but this was resolved as soon as I applied the conditioner.
I also like the way it's a sqeezy tube and not a pump container.

Pantene Aqua Light - Lightweight Nourishing Conditioner
My hair feels so soft and silky after using this conditioner which is a very rare occurrence due to my hair normally having a consistency that can only be described as close to straw.
I really liked the smell of this conditioner and it even stayed in my hair afterwards while it was drying which normally isn't something I notice.
Overall I'm very happy with this conditioner and would definitely repurchase it again.
My hair definitely felt clean after washing with these products and I could even smell it when my hair was drying which normally doesn't happen. For some reason my hair never really seems to keep that shampoo smell that everyone else always seems to get.
The shampoo did leave my hair feeling a bit tangled after use but once I applied the conditioner and left it in for a couple of minutes my hair felt very silky while I was rinsing it out and stayed that way while it dried.
Overall I think this is a great product and I also think it's about time something decent has come out for us fine hair girls!

Has anyone else used this Shampoo & Conditioner yet? What were your thoughts?

Friday, November 18, 2011

Nails of the Week - Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear 'Green With Envy'

My nail of the day today is Sally Hansen's Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear in 'Green With Envy'.

This colour is a real Granny Smith apple green and these photos unfortunately don't do it justice and show just how bright this green is.

This polish gives great coverage and only needs two coats to give a completely smooth and streak free finish.

It does seem to stay a bit tacky for quite awhile after application though which is a bit frustrating.

This is probably one of the best lighter greens I have used so far and was my colour of choice for a night out with the girls tonight to see Breaking Dawn Part 1 and then dinner and drinks afterwards while hubby stays home and plays babysitter. Yes, I'll admit I am a Twilight fan and  I am not ashamed at all. In fact, I can't wait!

Has anyone else seen Breaking Dawn yet? If so, what did you think?

Have a great weekend everyone!


Thursday, November 17, 2011

November BellaBox - A Tad Disappointed.....

I was eagerly awaiting the November BellaBox this month as I sneaked a peek at some blog posts from others who received their boxes a couple of days ago. I was mainly excited to try the OCC Lip Tar which was one of this month's contents as I've heard such good things about these and have been wanting to try them for ages. Unfortunately, when mine arrived I felt a little deflated :-( The Lip Tar that I received was in the colour of Strumpet which is an extremely dark bright plum colour which is just way too dark for me to ever wear anywhere out in public! I would have been over the moon with any other one of the lighter shades these come in. Boooo, way to disappoint!

Oh well, here is a complete list of the contents of this month's BellaBox:

1) Lancome Visionnaire (5 ml) - Visionnaire is the first skin care with LR 2412, a molecule designed to penetrate throughout all the layers of the skin's epidermis, triggering a range of micro transformations.

2) Erborian BB Creme, Elixir Au Ginseng & Yuza Sorbet (3 x 1.5ml sachets) - This is a Korean product which has selected priority energising and detoxifying herbs to stimulate the metabolism and speed up microcirculation. The result: natural anti-fatigue and strong anti-ageing properties.

3) Gatineau Melatogenine Force Collagene Anti-Wrinkle Concentrate - Helps stimulate the strength, vitality and longevity of collagen fibres.

4) Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics (OCC) Lip Tar in Strumpet (8 ml) - A stunning new innovation in lip colour. OCC Lip Tar combines the longevity of a lipstick with the ease of application of a gloss.

5) Orofluido Beauty Elixir for Hair (5 ml) - A heavenly indulgence for hair containing Argan Oil, Cyperus Oil and Linseed Oil, each producing its own beautifying properties to give remarkable silkiness, lightness and shine.

6) Twistband - A hair tie from California to keep hair secure without snagging or leaving ugly creases.

Personally, I'm a bit disappointed in this month's box and not only because the Lip Tar is practically useless to me. I think all the samples are too small to really give a good indication of any of the skin/hair products and the Twistband is something I could have made myself from some elastic in my sewing kit.

If this had been the first box I definitely would not have stayed subscribing. I know the Lip Tar is most likely supposed to be the spotlight item for this month so because I'm not happy with the one I received that's probably put a dampener on the rest of the contents for me.

Did anyone else receive the November BellaBox? If so, what did you think of it?


Book Review & Giveaway - 'Animal People' by Charlotte Wood

This review is courtesy of Product Talk by Nuffnang.

I was fortunate enough to be selected as part of the review team for the new Charlotte Wood novel 'Animal People'. Being an avid reader at every opportunity I can get this was one review team that I was very excited to be on.

'The hilarious, tender and heartbreaking story of a watershed day in the life of Stephen - aimless, unhappy and unfulfilled, this stiflingly hot December day is the day he has decided to dump his girlfriend. A sharply observed, 24-hour urban love story.' (Taken from the Allen & Unwin website)

This story is not one to read if you are after a happy, lighthearted book to pass the time. It is more a book you would read to really make you really think about everyday life and there are many elements that can easily be related to by most of society. I'm sure there have been times in everyone's life where they have been unhappy with their job, unhappy in a relationship without really knowing why, bitter with family and friends who clearly have a better and/or easier life.

There were times in this book where I felt very sorry for Stephen due to his obvious fear of relating to people and of course his obvious dislike for animals. Some parts of this story made me feel a little depressed with how life actually is for some people who have no direction, and are just plain old unhappy with every aspect of their daily life.

Also, being an animal person myself, I didn't particularly like some of the references to animals that were highlighted in the story but seeing some of the feelings that Stephen had for others who were animal people made me realise how the other half of society must think of us who treat our pets like they are part of our family.

I mainly read this book at night before bed and found it a very quick and easy read. The wonderful descriptive language used by Charlotte Wood makes you feel as if you can almost smell, taste and feel what is going on in the story. This added an extra element to the book which made you feel as if you were a participant following Stephen on his journey that day. The way the story is a complete day in the life of Stephen was very well written and in the end it really makes you think about how the smallest and most normal daily events end up shaping us as human beings.

I was fortunate enough to be given an extra copy of 'Animal People' to giveaway to one lucky reader. This will be my first ever giveaway so I am very excited!

To be in the running you just have to be a follower or subscriber of this blog, leave a comment below letting me know how you subscribe as well as answering the question "Are you an Animal Person or not and why?" Also, make sure you leave your email address so I can contact you. It's that simple!   

This giveaway will be open until Saturday 7th January 2012 and is open to anyone! I will draw the winner using and contact the winner via email.

Good Luck!

Monday, November 14, 2011

My Mission to Tan - Garnier Ambre Solaire Natural Bronzer

My second attempt at finding the perfect tan was with Garnier Ambre Solaire Natural Bronzer in Light.

This is marketed as a 'Velvet Touch Bronzing Gel with naturally derived tranning agents plus apricot extract. It is said to give a natural and uniform tan with reinforced moisturising power.'

I have really liked using this tanning gel and it seems to be virtually impossible to stuff up the application of this product. I am not the most patient person and have a tendency to just slap on my moisturiser and tanning products hastily after showering without taking much heed to perfect application and I have not seen one streak or dark/patchy areas appear anywhere.

I really love the consistency of the gel and it's so easy to blend it into the skin and ensure even coverage over your whole body. Being that this is the 'Light' version of this product I tend to apply it two days in a row to get the depth of colour I think looks good and it seems to last without needing extra applications for at least three days as long as I religiously moisturise every day, something I'm trying to stay in the habit of doing now after being naughty for so long and only moisturising every second or third day. I know, shocking isn't it?

The gel is quite moisturising itself as well so I don't need to use a separate moisturiser on the days this product is applied.

The smell isn't too bad either. It's not exactly great, but it's certainly not too unpleasant and tends to be practically unoticeable by the next morning which I like.

This tanner is so good I'm almost tempted to finish my mission to find the perfect tanner right now. But, for the sake of curiosity and also because ending this mission so early is just plain old boring, I am going to be on the hunt for an even better tanning product instead. I'm sure there has to be one out there.

Has anyone else used this tanner and found it as good as I did?


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Calvin Klein Haul

Recently Oz Sale had a sale on Calvin Klein cosmetics and I just couldn't help myself from getting a few things. Frankly, I must be terribly ignorant because I didn't even realise that Calvin Klein made cosmetics and that is what mainly intrigued me to try some of the products.

Here is what I got:

* Creme Lipstick in First Kiss - This is a nice nude lipstick bordering on being slightly pinkish. It applies nice and smooth and even has a pleasant taste (something that is actually quite important to me in a lipstick).

* Intense Eyeshadows in Merlot and Gold Lame - These are lovely pigmented eyeshadows. Merlot is a dark purple which will be great as a crease shade and Gold Lame is a really pretty golden colour that will nice as a highlighter.

* Delicious Pout Flavoured Lip Gloss in Breathless - This is a really pretty pale pink gloss with a slight glittery shimmer to it. It tastes really yummy too, kind of like those jelly lollies you can get.

Anyway, that's my little toe-dip into the work of Calvin Klein cosmetics. Overall I'm really happy with the actual colours as it's always so hard buying from the internet when you can't see a product in real life.

Has anyone else ever tried Calvin Klein makeup before??


November Lust Have It Box

I was very excited to receive the November Lust Have It box yesterday as I normally don't get it so soon and have to wait until almost a week after it's despatched before it arrives but surprisingly it only took two days this time.

This is what this month's box looked like (apologies for the crap lighting. I think I must live in the darkest house on earth!)

This is what it contains:

* RoC Complete Lift Lifting Daily Moisturiser (3 x 5ml) - This moisturising cream is enriched with hydrating agents for comfort lasting all day long. It targets skin firming and offers a new Lift and Fix technology. It plumps and hydrates the skin and makes it appear more dense and supple.

* Nude by Nature Mineral Lip Liner in Chique Natural (Full size) - This lip liner is 100% natural with no toxic ingredients and delivers long wearing, waterproof colour. The colour is your typical nude (see below picture) and it seems to glide on quite smooth. It also has a lip brush on the other end which is interesting. I'm not really sure if it's to use for smudging the liner or for applying your lipstick over the top.

* Lancome Tresor Midnight Rose (2 x 1.5ml) - This is a colourful, upbeat and joyful fragrance which embodies a mischievous femininity. I've sprayed this on myself already and find it VERY sweet. It may be a little too sweet for me but I'll see if it ends up growing on me.

* Hawley International Miracle Shine 2 Step Miracle Nail Shiner (Full size) - Creates the ultimate shine. One side prepares the nail and the other side shines. This seems to be an awesome nail buffer. I've played with it on a couple of my nails and can't stop staring at how shiny and smooth they are!

* Kerastase Nectar Thermique (5 x 10ml) - This protects the hair fibre from the damaging effects of heat styling. Hair is instantly nourished, facilitates the easy glide of the brush or smoothing iron for shape styling and has frizz control for a silk-like feel.

So, that's it for the November box. I'm not as impressed with it as I have been with the previous month's but that could be because the novelty of receiving these is wearing off a little too.

What does everyone else think of this month's box?


Sunday, November 6, 2011

Book Review - 'Baby Did A Bad Bad Thing' by Gabrielle Lord

Normally I'm a big fan of Gabrielle Lord books because it's nice to read about familiar places and things being that she is an Aussie but this book just didn't seem to do it for me.

Here's the general overview:
'Gemma Lincoln, the private eye whose tangled past was the subject of Feeding the Demons has never been busier. She's investigating the disappearance of millionaire Benjamin Glass; she's trying to discover who killed her old friend Shelly, a sex therapist, and she's also closing in on a killer who targets sex workers.
She's traded her old .38 for the new Glock. But a flash new weapon is no defence against the oldest betrayal of all. Is Gemma's beloved Steve two-timing her? And if he is, what can she do about it? And why is some unknown person determined to destry Gemma's business?
As the separate investigations hot up, the deadly connections between them all start to emerge. In a desperate race against time to save Steve's life and her own, Gemma must face the worst that the underworld can throw at her. But her latest error of judgement may prove fatal to them both'

When I read that I got excited thinking that this was going to be an action packed story. Well, I'm sorry to say, but it wasn't.

I feel the whole book was a little disjointed with stuff happening all over the place without really bringing anything together. There were a lot of connections going on but to me they just didn't seem to work all the time.

I can see that the author is trying to make Gemma out to be an independent and strong female who knows what she wants and goes and gets it but to me she just seemed a bit annoying due to the rash decisions she was always making at the drop of a hat and quite a lot of the time I was reading along and thinking 'as if'.

Her whole over-reaction with Steve was just plain annoying as well. She knew all too well the job he was doing yet always seemed to have a problem with every aspect of it. To me this was very frustrating.

Anyway, overall I thought this story really just lacked 'oomph' and it was a bit of a struggle for me to actually finish reading it. The pace finally started picking up towards the last 30 pages or so but until then it was a fairly weak plot.

Considering how much I have enjoyed all the other Gabrielle Lord books I have read I must say this one was kind of disppointing.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars.

Has anyone else ever read this book and have an opinion on it? What about any other Gabrielle Lord books?

Friday, November 4, 2011

October Empties!

Ok, so I made a pact with myself at the beginning of October that I would make it 'Sample Month' where I would try and use up as many samples of everything that I had.

Even since subscribing to some of those monthly beauty sample boxes I've become inundated with samples and thought it was time to finally start using them all. It was kind of fun to use a few different products that I wouldn't normally and has made me a bit more adventurous now in wanting to buy different things.

Here is what I managed to get through in October:

* Rexona Womens Naturals Deoderant - I know, this isn't anything even remotely exciting but I included it because it is one of my favourite deoderants of all time and I seem to gravitate towards buying it again and again. It's a nice light scent that doesn't overpower any perfume I might wear and most importantly it always keeps me feeling fresh, even at the gym. An all round excellent product.

* Nivea Irresistibly Smooth Body Lotion - This was a nice moisturising lotion that isn't too overpowering scent wise like some of the other Nivea products can be and it left my skin feeling lovely and soft.

* Dermalogica Microfoliant - I had a bit of a love/hate relationship with this product. I do like it but it's a little bit much for my sensitive skin on a daily basis. See my review here.

* Kerastase Elixir Ultime - This was a great product to keep mu hair frizz free. I applied a small amount to my hair after showering and it made it feel so soft when dry. It has an awesome smell too!

* Shu Uemura Skin Purifier Cleansing Oil - I wasn't a fan of this product at all. I've seen so many people rave about it but it just didn't do it for me. I just couldn't get the hand of using an oil to cleanse and I always felt as if my face was still greasy and dirty after using it.

* Lancome Genifique Youth Activator - I absolutely love this serum. Since using it I have really noticed a difference in the texture of my skin. It's the first time I've ever used something where I have really noticed such a difference. This product is definitely going on my Christmas wishlist!

* Clinique Turnaround Body Lotion - This was a nice body moisturiser but I didn't notice anything majorly different with my skin after using it to justify the normal price tag. It moisturised, it had a light fresh scent, that's about it really.

* A.S.A.P - I've been using up a lot of samples from this brand as I received a heap from Beautyheaven a while ago. This month I finished some of the Sheer Tint Moituriser (I am in love with this product, see my review here), some of the Daily Exfoliating Facial Scrub and some of the Gentle Cleansing Gel (I have reviewed this here). I still have heaps of these samples left which I will most likely finish in November.

* Pure Fiji Coconut Milk Shower Gel - This was a nice shower gel that had a lovely smell. Unfortunately there wasn't really enough in the bottle to get a good feel for the product as I think it only lasted about 3 or 4 washes.

* Sundari Sandalwood Cleanser - I received a few samples of these from Beautyheaven a while back as well and have been using them sparingly as this product seems to burn my face a little for some reason. Obviously there is something in it that reacts to my sensitive skin.

* Garnier Body Intensive 7 Day Repairing Lotion - I loved this lotion. I coated myself in it every night after showering and my skin never felt so soft. This will definitely be a moisturiser that I will keep using in the future.

Anyway, that's about it for now.

Hope everyone has a lovely weekend!

Michelle xx


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