Product Review: Sleek Makeup Eye & Cheek Palette In See You At Midnight

sleek makeup eye cheek palette see you at midnight 02

Name: Eye & Cheek Palette in See You At Midnight
Brand: Sleek Makeup
Size: 9g
Price: £9.99

From Sleek Makeup’s website:
Multi-functional palette contains four eyeshadows and two blushers from our bestselling i-Divine and Blush range. Eye & Cheek Palette provides all of your colour essentials in one convenient compact.
These velvety smooth eyeshadows and blushers are highly pigmented and long-lasting, making blending and defining simple.

What I liked:
– contains four dark eyeshadows and two blushes to create wearable nighttime looks
– blushes are pigmented, soft to the touch, easy to blend, and longlasting
– two of the eyeshadow shades are pigmented, soft to the touch, and blend easily
– eyeshadows last long when used with a primer
– sleek black packaging comes with a big mirror

What I didn’t like:
– two of the eyeshadows shades have a drier texture
– Romance in Rome is quite sheer
– Honeymoon in Hollywood is a bit harder to blend compared to the other shades

Usually, the only place you’ll see me at midnight is my bed. I like to go to sleep early and wake up early. I’m boring like that. But, if I were to go on a night out with my girlfriends, I’d totally be rocking the new Sleek Makeup Eye & Cheek Palette in See You At Midnight. This beauty features 4 cool and dark eyeshadow shades from the Romance i-Divine Palette and two blushes.

I don’t own the Romance i-Divine Palette yet, so I was thrilled to have the chance to try a few of the shades. Unfortunately, they were probably chosen based on colour, favouring the darker ones, than on quality. Two of the shades, Romance in Rome and Honeymoon in Hollywood have drier textures.

Romance in Rome, a cool-toned, dark purplish blue with a frosted finish is on the sheer side, and, no matter how you apply, you’ll never gonna get an intense and vibrant colour payoff. Honeymoon in Hollywood performs better. A cool toned, deep berry wine with a satin finish and silver sparkle, it has better colour payoff, but it is a tad more difficult to blend than the other shades in the palette.

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Bliss in Barcelona, a cool-toned dark purple with a frosted finish, and Meet in Madrid, a pale gold with a frosted finish as well, are wonderful. Pigmented and soft to the touch, they blend like a dream. Used together, these four shades create a dark and mysterious, but somewhat tamed, look that’s very wearable. You won’t have to worry about looking like you’ve been punched in the face when you wear them.

Although, if you have pale skin and are not careful, the Pomegranate Blush could make you look like a clown. This stuff is very pigmented! A raspberry red with a touch of gold shimmers, it has a soft texture that’s easy to blend. On darker skintones, it looks divine!

Antique, part of the Romance collection with the Romance i-Divine Palette, is instead more friendly to pale princesses as well. A medium brown shade with rose undertones and silver shimmer that’s not over the top, it provides a great alternative for those who want the focus to be on the eyes and keep the cheeks natural. Like Pomegranate, it is pigmented, soft to the touch, and easy to blend.

sleek makeup eye cheek palette see you at midnight 01

While the blushes lasted for most of the day on my dry cheeks, the eyeshadows started to crease and fade after about 6 hours of wear. That’s if you don’t use a good eyeshadow base to prime your lids beforehand. If your lids are very oily, you may experience some creasing even with a primer after 8 hours, though.

The eyeshadows and blushes are housed in a rectangular black palette. The size is neither too big nor too small, and perfect for travelling. Inside, you’ll also find a big mirror, a mini blush brush, and a dual-ended sponge applicator for eyeshadows. While I find the mirror very useful, I haven’t tried the applicators yet. I prefer to use my own brushes. I get better results that way.

Available at: Boots and Sleek Makeup

Summary
Sleek Makeup Eye & Cheek Palette in See You At Midnight contains four cool-toned and dark eyeshadows and two blushes to create wearable nighttime looks. The blushes, and two of the eyeshadows are pigmented, soft to the touch, and blend like a dream. The other two eyeshadow shades, instead, have a drier texture that impacts their performance somewhat: one is sheer, and the other a bit harder to blend. Staying power is good.

Rating: 3.5/5

Disclosure: this item was sent by PR for consideration.In addition, the review contains an affiliate link. For more information, please see my disclaimer.

Is Derma E Soothing Toner with Anti-Aging Pycnogenol The Best Toner For Sensitive Skin?

derma e soothing toner with anti-aging pycnogenol

I am not a big fan of toners. I just don’t understand what their purpose is. Remove makeup residue? Just buy a better cleanser. Restore the skin’s ph? It can do that on its own. Reduce shine? Alcohol or witch hazel can reduce it indeed in the short time, but they also dry out skin, which reacts by producing even more oil.

Only toners loaded with antioxidants, humectants, and emollients are beneficial for the skin, but since these are used in serums and moisturizers too, I can hardly justify the purchase of another product as well. But I know I’m in the minority. A lot of women would never give up their toner and, if you must use one, it’d better be awesome right?

One of my favourites is Derma E Soothing Toner with Anti-Aging Pycnogenol. Here’s why:

What Derma E says

This gentle, fragrance-free, alcohol-free toner helps restore skin’s pH balance and prepare skin for moisturizer or treatment.

Ingredient Analysis

glycerin molecular structure

Glycerin

Glycerin seems to be in everything, doesn’t it? That’s because it is a wonderful humectant, able to draw water from the environment into the skin. As a result, skin is hydrated and soft for hours.

green_tea

Pycnogenol And Green Tea Extract

Pycnogenol, an extract derived from pine bark, has antioxidant properties that can help prevent oxidative damage, such as photoaging. So has green tea extract. It is rich in polyphenols (and in particular in Epigallocatechin-3-gallate), a group of antioxidants that can prevent collagen breakdown and the depletion of antioxidant enzymes, as well as reducing inflammation and redness caused by sun exposure.

Chamomile

Chamomile Extract And Allantoin

Another antioxidant used in the formula is chamomile. It is a weak one, but it also has anti-inflammatory properties that can soothe allergies, erythema and sunburns. Allantoin is another effective anti-irritant that can soothe irritations as well.

Final Considerations On The Formula

Alcohol-free, Derma E Soothing Toner with Anti-Aging Pycnogenol contains antioxidants and soothing ingredients that help prevent the signs of aging and fight irritations. Because of this, it is a great option for all skin types, including sensitive.

Full Ingredient List

Water (Aqua), Glycerin, Pinus Pinaster (Pycnogenol®) Bark Extract, Panthenol, Allantoin, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Organic Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin

Avaibility

Derma E Soothing Toner with Anti-Aging Pycnogenol comes in a sleek white and green tube that contains 175ml of product. It retails at $15.50, but you can now buy it for $10.79 at Amazon.

The Bottom Line

Derma E Soothing Toner with Anti-Aging Pycnogenol is a gentle and hydrating toner with antioxidant and soothing properties that works well for all skin types. Because it can calm irritations, it is particularly suitable for those with sensitive skin.

Have you tried this toner?

Product Review: Boots Bodyspray Floral Love Violets & Mandarin

boots bodyspray floral love violets mandarin

Name: Bodyspray Floral Love Violets & Mandarin
Brand: Boots
Size: 75ml
Price: £1.49

From Boot’s website:
Boots Bodyspray Floral Love is a body fragrance infused with violets and mandarin.A blend of romance and passion with powdery notes, fall in love everyday.

What I liked:
– lovely citrusy floral scent
– tame, stays close to the skin
– lasts 7 hours on the skin
– pretty packaging

What I didn’t like:
– if you don’t like simple, citrusy floral scents, this is not for you
– if you like bold scents, you won’t like this
– doesn’t last all day

You don’t need to spend a lot of money to smell good. A deodorant or body spray will envelop you in a pleasant, fragrant embrace for hours on end. Sure, these scents are usually simple and safe, but sometimes, that’s just what you need. They’re comforting, don’t offend others, and you can count on them to keep you smelling nice throughout the day.

That’s exactly what Boots Bodyspray Floral Love Violets & Mandarin does. It’s a fresh and clean, but soft and powdery scent with a hint of that typical deodorant smell this type of product always has. Although it’s called Violet and Mandarin, the notes make their appearance in the opposite order.

When you first spray it on, all your nose can smell is the strong, fresh, but somewhat bitter, aroma of mandarin. It takes a few minutes to mellow down and allow the violets to shine as well. Their scent is delicate, powdery without being old-fashioned, and very feminine.

Floral Love Violet & Mandarin doesn’t last all day on me. Instead, it starts to fade after about 7 hours of wear. Not too bad for a scent like this that tends to stay close to the skin. Your friends and colleagues will appreciate how tame it is, as being next to you won’t give them a headache.

Just like the scent, the packaging is very feminine too. It’s purple, and decorated with images of violets. I am a bit disappointed mandarins can’t be seen anywhere on the tube, though, as they’re such a big part of the opening accord.

Ingredients:
Butane, Alcohol Denat, Isobutane, Propane, Aqua, Parfum, Propylene Glycol, Dipropylene Glycol, Linalool, Limonene, Alpha-isomethyl ionone, Citronellol, Hydroxycitronellal

Available at: Boots

Summary
Boots Bodyspray Floral Love Violets & Mandarin is a fresh and clean, but soft and powdery scent that stays close to the skin and lasts for about 7 hours.

Rating: 3.5/5

Disclosure: the review contains an affiliate link. For more information, please see my disclaimer.

Product Review: Sleek Makeup Control Shine & Prime

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Name: Control Shine & Prime
Brand: Sleek Makeup
Size: 15ml
Price: £7.99

From Sleek Makeup’s website:
Control Shine & Prime creates a smooth, even base and controls oil for an all-day matte finish.
Lightweight formula primes skin perfectly for flawless makeup application
Luxurious velvety texture minimises the look of pores
Easy to apply and completely undetectable on the skin, leaving a shine-free, flawless complexion
This innovative primer can be used alone or before makeup to control excess oil

What I liked:
– thick texture feels so lightweight on the skin
– temporarily fills in fines lines and wrinkles, making them look smaller
– helps control oil, keeping your skin matte and shine-free for hours
– makes skin silky soft to the touch
– helps foundation last longer
– didn’t make me break out
– the packaging

What I didn’t like:
– if you don’t like silicone-based primers, this is not for you
– if you use primers daily, you may not like its smaller size

The first step in creating a smooth and flawless face? Primers. They help minimize imperfections, allow foundations to glide on more easily, and make makeup last longer. Sleek Makeup Control Shine & Prime does even more. It helps keep shine at bay too.

Now, only my t-zone is oily, and not even that much. So, this primer had no problem in controlling shine and keeping my face matte for the entire day. Its secret? Silica. This mineral, which can be found in sandstone, clay, and even in parts of plants and animals, has the ability to absorb moisture, oil, and sweat, thus reducing shine. If you have oily skin, it’s well-worth a try.

Unless you hate silicones. The formula is loaded with it. Silicones get a bad rep for not allowing skin to breathe, but that’s not true. Silicones do create a barrier on the skin that slows down water loss but, because their structure is made up of larger molecules with wider spaces between each molecule, it doesn’t suffocate skin. And they can cause breakouts only when used with comedogenic ingredients. The barrier silicones create can trap those underneath it, but if you don’t use them, you shouldn’t experience any problems. I didn’t.

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Silicones are widely used for their ability to fill in fine lines and wrinkles, making them look temporarily smaller. That’s something this primer does well. In fact, Sleek Makeup claims you can even use it on its own on bare skin to minimize their appearance. But it can’t even out your skin tone. Its fleshy colour melts into your skin, providing no extra coverage.

Silicones also give slip to a product, allowing it to glide on smoothly, and a silky soft feel to the skin. Whenever I use this primer, I can’t help but touch my face a little too often, it feels so baby smooth! Oh, and silicones too can help absorb excess oil. Despite its anti-shine ingredients, the formula doesn’t feel drying at all, not even on my dry cheeks. But, of course, you can only apply it on your oily patches if you so prefer. The texture was surprising too. Although it’s quite thick, it feels so lightweight on the skin!

Sleek Makeup Control Shine & Prime is housed in a pretty and professional-looking black tube. It’s quite small compared to most primers on the market, containing only 15ml of product. But i, like me, you use primers only on a special occasions, you will appreciate this smaller format. At least, we’ll have a chance of finishing it. Those bigger tubes last forever!

Ingredients:
Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Silica, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Isononyl Isononanoate, Isododecane, Polymethylmethacrylate, VP/Hexadecene, Copolymer, Trimethysiloxysilicate, Mica, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl, Glycol, Titanium Dioxide (77891), Iron Oxide Yellow(77492), Iron Oxide Red (77491), Iron Oxide Black (77499)

Available at: SleekMakeup.com and Superdrug

Summary
Sleek Makeup Control Shine & Prime is a silicone-based primer that helps makeup last longer, makes fine lines and wrinkles look smaller by filling them in temporarily, and helps control oil, keeping shine at bay for hours.

Rating: 4/5

Disclosure: this item was sent by PR for consideration.In addition, the review contains an affiliate link. For more information, please see my disclaimer.

Book Review: Change Your Clothes, Change Your Life By George Brescia

change your clothes change your life george brescia

Title: Change Your Clothes, Change Your Life: Because You Can’t Go Naked
Author: George Brescia
Pages: 288
Price: $15.30

Synopsis:
Open the door to harmonious, powerful, and positive dressing with a guide that’s like The Secret—for your wardrobe. In this groundbreaking how-to book, style expert George Brescia shows you how to transform yourself from the inside out.
More than a style guide, this revolutionary book by a seasoned stylist teaches a method of conscious dressing that begins with a powerful internal change. Instead of just grabbing for whatever’s on hand, you’ll learn to set your goals for the day, determining how you want to be perceived, and then dress in a way that helps manifest those intentions. Change Your Clothes, Change Your Life reveals the true power your clothing has to affect your life, showing how this second skin impacts your job prospects, your romantic life, your income, and even your deepest sense of self. Translating his styling methods into a philosophy anyone can apply on her own, Brescia also delivers tips and tricks of the trade to help convert even the most hapless dresser into a happy and educated shopper. Because the goal is to have you not only looking great, but feeling more confident, too. From major closet overhauls to a whole new philosophy on color, this is a comprehensive manual for anyone who’s ever looked at her closet in despair.
Accessible, direct, honest, and thought-provoking, Change Your Clothes, Change Your Life takes an eye-opening look at the intersection between our clothing and our emotions, hopes, and dreams, showing us how improving our external appearance can have life-changing effects on how we’re perceived by others—and more importantly, on how we perceive ourselves.

“This is not a book about style or fashion. This is a book about learning to see. This is a book about your relationship to the outside world. This is a book about bringing order and harmony to our external appearance, and thus to our inner life. This is a book about how we get in our own way. This is a book about turning up the volume, and living every day to its fullest. This is a book about change,” recites stylist George Brescia in the introduction of his new book, Change Your Clothes, Change Your Life.

Do clothes really have such a profound impact on our life? Yes. The way we dress is a reflection of our inner self. When we feel good about ourselves, we tend to dress better, and pay more attention to what suits and flatters us. But when we hate the way we look, we tend to hide our bodies behind baggy, shapeless, faded-coloured, clothes, hoping no one will notice us. Only this has the opposite effect. Our dowdiness marks us as insecure and makes us stand out. And for all the wrong reasons.

Our outfits, whether we like it or not, send a message to the outside world. This message can be either positive or negative, and impact accordingly all areas of our life, from our job prospects and income, to our romantic lives and self-esteem. That’s why it is important to dress consciously. So that you can communicate through your clothes who you are and what you want in life.

In this book, Brescia provides some valuable insights to help you understand why you dress the way you do, and how to bring out your real inner self. Once you’ve given yourself permission to dress like you’re always wanted, you’re gonna do the same in other areas of your life, become happier and more fulfilled.

Of course, the book is also full of practical style tips. Brescia will teach you how to clean out your wardrobe, what essentials every woman should have in her closet to be able to face every occasion in style, what shades best suit your colouring (although I was a bit disappointed there is no advice on this for women with medium brown hair – every other common hair colour is covered) and what styles best flatter your shape, how to choose the right accessories for every outfit, and a lot more.

The book is written in a witty and entertaining style, making you feel like you’re talking to a friend. Yes, sometimes the language is a bit over the top, and it feels like he is taking fashion a bit too seriously, but then I guess that’s normal when you work in this industry. I also felt like he was talking mostly to career women rather than students, although with his tips, and time, anyone can create a versatile wardrobe on a budget.

What really disappointed me, though, was the lack of photos. I would have loved to see some before and after transformations. Despite this, I would highly recommend this book to every woman who is dissatisfied with her current style and wants to change it. Before you buy new clothes, you need to figure out who you are and what you want to communicate. Change Your Clothes, Change Your Life helps you do both.

Available at: Amazon

Summary
In his book, Change Your Clothes, Change Your Life, George Brescia explains how dressing well can change every aspect of your life. Full of style tips and psychological insights, this guide will help you dress the way you always wanted and communicate who you are through your clothes.

Rating: 4/5

Disclosure: this item was sent by PR for consideration.In addition, the review contains an affiliate link. For more information, please see my disclaimer.

Product Review: Pupa Viso Di Velluto 3 In 1

pupa viso di velluto 3 in 1

Name: Viso Di Velluto 3 in 1
Brand: Pupa
Size: 150ml
Price: €17,10

From Pupa’s website:
Soft and comfortable emulsion for the total beauty of the face.
Result: skin is bright and velvety soft, perfectly clean. Ultra-soft lips.
It’s the ideal product for those who don’t have much time and want something practical.

What I liked:
– makes skin soft, smooth, and moisturized; great for dry skin
– removes makeup well
– sinks quickly into the skin
– practical and sleek packaging

What I didn’t like:
– doesn’t help control shine; not suitable for oily skin
– floral scent is quite strong
– tastes awful

As a broke teen, I loved multi-tasking beauty products. They saved me both money and time in the morning. But that came at a price. Usually, they only did one thing really well and the rest only so-so. I didn’t much mind then but these days I prefer to buy separate products. It may be a bit more expensive, but the results are worth it.

But there are times when I still find multitasking products very useful. Such as travelling. With all the restrictions on what you can bring in your carry on luggage on a plane, a multitasking product such as Pupa Viso Di Velluto (Velvet Face), which works as a moisturizer, lip balm, and makeup remover, ensures you have all the essentials with you without breaking any laws. Handy, isn’t it?

But does it work? As a moisturizer for dry skin, really well. The cream contains humectants glycerin and Sodium Hyaluronate (it can hold 1000x times its weight in water and works well both in high and low humidity conditions), which attract water from the environment into the skin. Shea Butter, and a bunch of synthetic ingredients such as Ethylhexyl Stearate and Cetearyl Alcohol (a good, moisturizing type of alcohol) have emollient properties that make skin soft and smooth. Finally, Dimethicone gives the product slip and skin a silky soft feel, and fills in temporarily fine lines and wrinkles.

As a result, this white cream leaves skin baby soft, smooth, and moisturized for hours. It’s perfect for those with normal or dry skin, while oily-skinned girls will be frustrated by the lack of anti-shine ingredients. After a few hours, my t-zone was oily again. The consistency is on the thick side, but it still feels very lightweight once applied on the skin. It sinks into it instantly too.

Pupa Viso Di Velluto works well as a makeup remover too. A small amount easily takes off everything but waterproof mascara. For that, it takes a little more product and time, but it is doable. It’s not my makeup remover of choice for every day though. I prefer a bilayer remover, especially for eye makeup, because I think it does the job more quickly, but in an emergency, or while travelling, this gets the job done. That’s just me, though. If you prefer creamy and moisturizing makeup removers, you’ll appreciate it a lot more than I did.

Instead, I hated it as a lip balm. The texture may be on the thicker side, but it is still too runny to be used on the lips. Because of that, I always end up ingesting some of it, and while that’s not dangerous, it’s not pleasant either. This stuff tastes horrible! But if you can put up with that, it will make your lips soft and smooth. It’s best used before going to bed. Then you won’t be doing any talking or eating and the chances of ingesting it are much, much smaller.

Another thing I’m not too fond of is the scent. It is floral and quite strong. It only bothers me during application because, thank goodness, once on the skin, it fades away quickly. But, as much as I love perfume, I much prefer my skincare products to be fragrance-free. That’s because fragrances can be irritating, especially if you have sensitive skin. Pupa Viso Di Velluto didn’t irritate my skin, though. And it didn’t cause breakouts either.

Ingredients:
Aqua, Ethylhexyl Stearate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Glyceryl Stearate, SE Cycnoches Cooperi (Orchid) Flower/Leaf Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Parfum, Dimethicone, Carbomer Sodium Hydroxyde, Sodium Saccharin, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Ehylhexylglycerin, Benzyl Salicylate, Limonene, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Hydroxyisohexyl 3 Cycloexene Carboxaldehyde, Citronellol, CI 17200.

Available at: Italian beauty shops

Summary
Pupa Viso Di Velluto 3 in 1 is a basic moisturizer for dry skin that can also be used as a makeup remover and a lip balm. It makes skin soft and smooth for hours, and takes off dirt and makeup quite easily, but its texture makes it uncomfortable to use it as a lip balm. It tastes awful and the floral scent is too strong too.

Rating: 3.5/5