24 August 2015

A Personal Post and a Short Break

I started this blog as a creative outlet and I don't like sharing personal details on the blog, as that's not who I am. I am a private person and I don't wear my heart on my sleeve for the whole internet to see.

That being said...the past few weeks have been difficult for my husband and I, and it reached a very tragic point last week. We are currently in Cape Town trying to cope with everything and to help out. There will be no posts for the next week, at least, as I can't deal with obsessing over photo angles and witty one-liners now.

Thank you to everyone who are supporting us, you don't know how much it means. 

Until next time...


20 August 2015

RetailBox's milk_shake brings all the boys to the yard

It's time for another Secret Box* from RetailBox and I'm excited to finally show you the contents! Every time that I have bought or received a box, it has been a different haircare brand, and this month is no exception. The latest offering contains three full sized products from the UK haircare brand milk_shake.

milk_shake is a salon professional haircare brand that offers a whole range of products to suit different hair types and needs. The brand is inspired by nature and offers milk and fruit as ingredients in their products. 

milk_shake Integrity Nourishing Shampoo and Conditioner (300 ml)

The shampoo is a cleansing and nourishing shampoo for all hair types, and is free from sulphates, parabens, and sodium chloride. It gently cleanses and nourishes the hair with organic Muru Muru butter. Frizz is eliminated, leaving your hair soft and silky.

The conditioner is formulated to deeply nourish all hair types. It contains Muru Muru butter that works with the shampoo to condition and nourish the hair.

Both products smell absolutely amazing: like a vanilla and fruit dessert. The products aren't very rich, yet leave my hair feeling silky smooth and nourished. The shampoo and conditioner retail for R250 each and can be ordered here and here.

milk_shake Incredible Milk (150 ml)

This leave-in spray treatment boasts 12 actions, including repairing the hair, frizz control, prevention of split ends, heat protection, long lasting hairstyle, detangling, shine, added body and volume, easier ironing, protecting and maintaining colour, protection from UV rays, and smoothing of the hair cuticles.

The smell...oh my goodness the smell! The first time I used this I ended up with crunchy hair the next day, because I completely over-sprayed my hair. Incredible Milk smells exactly like vanilla and creme caramel, and I was close to eating it. You are supposed to spray this onto clean, damp hair, comb through, and (heat)style as normal.

This retails for R244 and can be bought here.

Should you buy it?

The price of the Secret Box #14 is R299, while the value is R744. Very good value for money! Stock is selling quickly, so head over to Retail Box and order one now!

Until next time!


*PR sample

17 August 2015

Benefit is back!

If you've been living under a rock the past few months: hello and welcome. The quirky and fabulous American makeup brand, Benefit, has relaunched in South Africa. I bought two things from the counter in Sandton City and thought I'd share my initial thoughts with you.

Benefit "do the hoola"

This little box of goodness contains everything you need to get that Benefit Hoola bronze. For R450 you get to try out five of Benefit's most-loved products; some old, some new. If I'm not mistaken "dew the Hoola" is a kit-only release, meaning that you can't buy it separately.

The Ultra Plush lip gloss in "hoola" is a gorgeous bronzy gold lipgloss that has a watery texture. It glides onto lips and keeps them moisturised and is the most non-sticky gloss I've had the pleasure of applying...ever. The colour, however is a bit misleading. I thought I would sport a golden champagne pout, but the colour is very natural with only a hint of bronze.

The They're Real! mascara is a mini, but has the same brush as the full-size. I forgot to photograph the brush, but it's quite a long brush with little bristles at the tip standing in all directions: this looks a bit odd but it helps grip those hard-to-reach lashes in the inner corner of the eye.

After buying this I read that Kim K's contouring powder of choice is Benefit's hoola. If it's good enough for her, who am I to disagree? I don't like the woman but she does a mean contour! What I love about this kit is that the bronzer comes in a teeny tiny little compact, which means that you can pop it in your handbag and don't need to take the whole box with you (it also comes with a little brush, which I don't use). The powder is buttery and soft and has a lovely warm colour without looking orange. It does look slightly lighter than the one I have in another kit, but I haven't compared them side-by-side yet.

Dew the hoola is basically the hoola bronzer but in liquid form. This comes in a little pump bottle and the bronzer is a bit darker than that of the powder version. It gives a stunning and healthy glow, but things can get a little bit orange/brown if you're heavy-handed.

The last item is probably the cutest of them all: a mini version of the BeneBalm tinted lip balm. This one is the red lip balm and leaves your lips with a sheer red tint. It doesn't smell like what you'd expect a lip balm to smell like, to me it almost smells like lavender! I was a bit disappointed with this as it leaved my lips chapped within a few hours, but I'll give it another couple of tries...

Benefit Fine One One

This deodorant-like stick is a multipurpose lip and cheek product: cream blusher in a twist-up stick. I have always been intrigued by this product and decided to add it to my basket. Fine One One contains three colours: Soft coral, sheer watermelon, and pink champagne. You sweep all three colours in one go onto the cheekbones. The colour starts off very sheer but can be built up to a nice juicy blush.

I like to start from my cheekbones and sweep upwards and outwards and then blend everything out with my Real Techniques Stippling Brush. They say you can wear this on its own, or underneath your favourite Benefit box blush. You can also use this on your lips, but I normally don't find these multipurpose products to be hydrating enough for my lips.

Do you have your eye on something from Benefit? Let me know in the comments section!

Until next time!


13 August 2015

Unboxing: The Test Box - August

Nobody does travel size hair products like The Test Box, and this month is no exception. The August Test Box features a haircare brand that, I have to admit, is totally unknown to me.

A bit of history...

Keune is a Dutch company that was established in 1922 by Jan Keune, a certified chemist. He focused on perm solutions, which made him the first person (and the first company) in Europe to manufacture perm solutions. After hot perm solutions came cold perm solutions, as well as aerosol hairsprays and hair gel - the first in Europe. In 1972 they opened a branch in Strassbourg, France which was moved to Paris in 1987. During the early 2000s, the company also opened branches in Northern America, Belgium, and Switzerland. In 2012 they celebrated their 90th birthday. 

Keune Shampoo and Conditioner*

The So Pure line focuses on the sense of well-being and the aroma experience obtained from the 100% natural plant ingredients. Over 30 plant extracts and essential oil are used in the making of these products. 

The shampoo cares for dry hair and scalp and restores the quality and hydration of the hair with Argan oil and palmarosa oil. Hair is left feeling nourished, soft, and shiny. The conditioner contains the same ingredients as the shampoo, but with the added ingredient of shea butter to smooth and detangle hair. Both products are sulphate and paraben free, so perfect for coloured hair!

This month's Test Box is currently on sale for R130. All Keune products are also on sale for the month of August, so hurry over to The Test Box!

Will you be buying this? Let me know in the comments section!

Until next time!


*PR sample

10 August 2015

The new essence Nauti Girl range

I have to admit, essence products are very "hit or miss" with me: either I'm completely smitten with it or it misses the mark completely. What does count in their favour, though, is the fact that their limited edition collections are super adorable. And very very affordable.

I wasn't even aware that they had a new collection out, but when I saw this nautical-themed collection aptly called "Nauti Girl", I was smitten. The only thing I love more than flamingos and pineapples, is anchors. I wanted to get everything from the collection, but decided to first just get three things to try out and show you.

The collection contains two eyeshadow palettes (my Dischem sadly only had the blue one), four stunning nail polish shades in classy square bottles (two vibrant shades of blue, a coral red, and a pretty pink), two lipsticks (a coral red to match the nail polish and a peachy beige nude), blush with an embossed anchor on it, a felt-tip eyebrow pen, a navy twist-up eyeliner, nail stickers, and a perfume.

Nauti girl lipstick in "01 Miss Navy"

As you can see I bought the coral red lipstick, the nail stickers, and the eyeliner pencil. The lipstick is the most beautiful coral red colour. When swatched, however, it is a lot more orange than red. It's a creamy lipstick and applies nicely, but unfortunately there is zero longevity, so you'll have to keep reapplying this.

Nauti girl nail stickers

I'm probably most excited about the nail stickers, and I don't even wear nail stickers... The anchors and the littles shells are just too cute and I can't wait to use them all!

Nauti girl waterproof eye pencil in "Ahoy boy!"

To me, the eyeliner pencil in the shade "Ahoy boy!" is probably the best value for money out of the entire collection. Not only is the eyeliner pencil a twist-up pencil, but it contains a sharpener in the cap like more expensive brands have. So every time you put the cap back on the pencil, it sharpens the point. Add to that the fact that navy is a gorgeous alternative to black eyeliner, and that this pencil is seriously smudge proof, and you've got yourself a winner.

Which products from this range do you have your eye on? Let me know in the comments section!

Until next time!


03 August 2015

Monthly Favourites: July

According to the calendar, winter is almost over, but I think we're still going to have some seriously cold days ahead of us! My favourites for July reflect this as I kept reaching for more moisturising products this past month.

The Body Shop Vitamin E Glow Boosting Moisturiser

This jar of goodness feels like a glass of orange juice for my skin. It's a pale orange gel cream that moisturises and revives my skin. Normally I only use cream-creams during winter, but my skin needed this boost of Vitamin C. The jar says it's for "Dull, tired, and grumpy skin", and that was definitely the state of my skin before I started using this.

Kiehl's Hydro-Plumping Re-Texturizing Serum Concentrate

This hydrating serum feels more like a light moisturiser and sinks into the skin beautifully. It's not sticky or greasy, it just leaves your skin feeling nice and hydrated. I use this morning and night after toner and before applying moisturiser.

Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge

I have waited a long time for this little sponge and it doesn't disappoint! I've used a couple of makeup sponges, but this one's distinct shape gives it an edge over the other sponges. The flat area makes it nice for patting in foundation or concealer over big areas like cheeks or my forehead, while the pointed tip allows for easy concealer blending around my nose and under my eyes. I wet this sponge under the tap and squeeze out the excess. Sometimes I spray the sponge with a makeup setting spray, so that I get the added benefit of setting my makeup while I tap away with the sponge.

Tigi Dumb Blonde Shampoo and Conditioner*

I received this shampoo and conditioner samples in my July Test Box which I reviewed here. Although I don't have blonde hair, I do have ombré and this shampoo and conditioner duo really brings out the blondness. I also love the smell of this: it smells like fruit sweets and the smell lingers in my hair during the day. It also leaves my hair super soft and silky, definitely a winner in my book.

And for my last favourite of July...

Acrylic Makeup Organiser

I bought this makeup storage unit a few weeks ago and I've loved organising all my makeup. It's made doing my makeup easier as I can now see what I have, and I also have easier access to everything. I'm still not 100% happy with where everything is packed, but I'm getting there. I'll be doing posts on the makeup storage unit (pricing, size, etcetera), as well as how I organise my makeup, so keep an eye out for that.

What were your favourites for July? Let me know in the comment section!

Until next time!


* PR sample