27 November 2013

Lust Have It - November 2013

Is it me or are we getting our Lust Have It boxes later and later each month? At least there was a pretty large range of products included in this month's box...

There were also coupons that were actually worth taking photos off (more on this later)!

Without blabbering on about nothing, I'm going straight into what I received...

1. Mary Kay Relaxing Foot Soak - 88ml
This is sold in a pack with an Energizing Foot Scrub, Soothing Foot Balm and Pedicure Brush/Punice Stone with its handy beauty bag (RRP: $38). I'm not sure if I'll ever use this, as I'm far too lazy when it comes to my feet. The only thing I do is paint my toe nails, and that happens approximately once a fortnight or when I get a new polish and have run out of fingernails to paint. Therefore, I will probably give this away... Kris Kringle? :P (I'm such a tight arse)

2. Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Gentle Exfoliating Facial Scrub - 15g (RRP: $9.99 for 150ml)
"Containing micro-fine crushed cocoa beans to gently exfoliate facial skin, this facial scrub removes dead skin cells. It reveals smoother skin and enhances the skin's surface, allowing it to better absorb the daily moisturiser or night cream."

I'm pretty sure I have one of these around somewhere. I think the words "gently exfoliate" in the description throws me off using this exfoliator, as I hate exfoliators that are weak. Having said that, I will probably take this with me to the states next month, as it's handy to have a travel-sized scrub when travelling.

3. Aveda Botanical Kinetics Gel Cleanser - 7ml (RRP: $54.95 for 150ml) and Hydrating Lotion - 7ml (RRP: $79.95 for 150ml)
Botanical Kinetics Gel Cleanser:  
"This plant-derived gel cleanser foams away impurities, helps normalise skin and gently dissolves makeup and impurities. Ideal for normal to oily skin."
I'm quite excited to use this! I love that it helps remove makeup, as I know that my usual method of removing makeup through the use of a makeup removing wipe is not always efficient. Therefore, I do rely on my cleanser and Clarisonic to remove any residual makeup. I will be bringing this with me to the states as well!

Botanical Kinetics Hydrating Lotion:
"Protecting from dehydration, this quick-absorbing hydrating lotion contains naturally-derived ingredients that replenishes moisture with a gentle touch. For all skin types."
Someone said to me that sometimes people with oily skin have de-hydrated skin - the skin over produces oil in response to dehydration. However, I'm still really iffy when it comes to using anything that claims to hydrate. But I'm going to put this to the test and see if it really works. Keep an eye out on an empties post for a quick review, as there might not be enough to warrant a full post review.

4. Davroe Wellbeing Treatment Replenish - full size (RRP: $11.95 for 50g)
"This intensive moisture-rich treatment deeply penetrates to help repair, seal and smooth even the most damaged hair. With Australian pure plant botanicals and sunflower ceramides, it restores wellbeing, silkiness and shine to the hair."

I was astonished to learn that this is a full sized conditioner, as it's small compared to its competitors. However, it doesn't exactly break the bank, so I guess it's forgivable.

I just used this today and it smells amazing. I think I probably get about 5-6 uses out of this tube, which isn't very impressive (sorry to bring up its size, but it's just so tiny for a full-sized product!) My hair doesn't feel all that moisturized (nor does it feel super damaged, but I did get a haircut recently). I might have to use it more than once to reap the benefits.

5. Benefit They're Real Mascara - 30g (RRP: $38 for 8.5ml)
"This breakthrough mascara reveals lashes you never knew you had with a specially designed brush that can be used horizontally and vertically. The long-wearing jet-black formula lengthens, curls, volumizes, lifts and separates."

This has to be the most exciting product in this month's Lust Have It box. I love Benefit Cosmetics, despite the crazy inflated prices in Australia compared to the states. I also love their Bad Gal lashes, and I have yet to try the They're Real mascara. I think I will be using this next, after I throw out a few more old mascaras.

6. Mary Kay Thinking Of You EDP (RRP: $30 for 29.6ml)
"This fruity floriental fragrance turns a moment into a memory with a scent that captures the emotions that connect us all and makes the perfect gift."

Fruity/floriental is definitely what this perfume smells like. I find this perfume pleasant, but a little too strong (I just wiped it on my wrist two seconds ago, and will report back after I finish this post). It's been about 7 minutes since I wiped the perfume tissue thing on my wrist. It's still quite strong, and I can see me getting a headache from it, which is a shame as it smells quite nice.

7. Lonvitalite C3 Collagen Firming and Moisturizing Facial Mask - 1 piece (RRP: $32 for a pack of 5)
"Supplying collagen, this facial mask mildly seals water in the skin, improves skin luster, fades wrinkles, and promotes the regeneration of damaged cells."

I'm really horrible at using masks. I just don't have the time. Whatever time I have is used on getting lung cancer from re-painting my nails. Therefore, I'm not sure if I'll use this. I'll probably throw this in a box for Kris Kringle ;) :P

There were some photo-worthy coupons here. One from Davroe - purchase a luxe leave in masque and receive a free rebuilder protein reconstructor worth $14.95. One from Benefit - complimentary eye and brow make-upper and a free brow tint when a brow arch wax is purchased (I wish I still worked near Bondi, as there's a brow bar there). A $30 gift card from Hell Fresh. And lastly, a $5 voucher off Lust Have It Fashion & Beauty Box.

So that's it for my Lust Have It November edition box. Overall, I'm quite impressed with the range of products included despite how late I received it. Here's to hoping that Lust Have it sends out December's box earlier, so we get it before the long christmas/new year holiday!

What did you get in your Lust Have It November box? Were you happy with what you received?

If you are interested in purchasing a Lust Have It subscription, get $5 off your first box by using the coupon code "WALLET". To subscribe for $14.95 for the first box (regular price $19.95), click here.

22 November 2013

Pissed off at the world... - Part II

This is another rave post aka long, wordy one. This time I'm annoyed at a company called Ozsale. Ozsale is a website that has a whole heap of sales events that run for a few days. They claim here that "Estimated delivery times will be indicated within each specific sale according to the dispatch location and are typically between 7 - 21 days", which I have absolutely no problems with.

However, having to wait ONE month (or 32 days to be exact) for them to DISPATCH my order is simply just ridiculous.

It's two weeks in, and I'm STILL waiting for my Essie polishes to appear in my PO Box. According to the tracking link, it's umm... somewhere?

It should have AT LEAST reached Australian shores by now... shouldn't it? I mean it's the 21st century, and there are things called planes? It's a 14 hour flight from LA to Sydney, so I think it's safe to assume that it shouldn't take over two weeks to find it's way from LA to Australia.

To further fuel my annoyance/disgust, Ozsale has cancelled ANOTHER one of my orders. Please note that I have paid for all my orders via paypal, which means that a refund should be instantaneous. 
My Pumpkin Patch order was apparently "refunded" on the 19th of November 2013. However, I have not seen a refund in my paypal account.

I have sent a message to Ozsale, expressing my disgust and impatience. 

This is what I wrote on the 4th of November 2013 regarding the Essie order:
"Regarding Order 9170651. The estimated delivery is: 22/10/13 - 29/10/13, and the stock arrived on 29 Oct. I know you guys are busy but why is it taking so long for this order to be packed and sent?"

They replied with:
"Hi Abigail,
Thank you for your contact message!
I apologise for the delay in the delivery of your order.
I have spoken to our logistics team and they noted that they are currently packing all orders from this sales event at our US warehouse! Depending on the size of the sale this potentially can take a few days.
The reason for the delay is the delay of the delivery of the stocks from our brand partner due to the huge number of orders.
Once your order has been dispatched the link to your tracking details will appear next to your order in My Account, My Orders.
Please allow up to 10 business days for your tracking number to become active once dispatched.
As a thank you for your patience, I've placed a $10 store credit onto your OZSALE account today.
Happy shopping!

Thanks for the $10 store credit, but what makes you think that I'd want to spend anymore money on sales events at Ozsale when you are taking so bloody long fulfilling orders?! Also, fair enough it can "potentially take a few days" to pack all orders from this sales event, but to take SIX days? How many staff do you have? Two?

On the 21st November, I was well and truly annoyed, and this is what I wrote:
"This is just getting ridiculous. The tracking link still says the same thing as it did two weeks ago! It's been 6.5 weeks since I placed an order. Not happy at all! Furthermore, one of my orders (10191571) was cancelled on the 19th of November, and I have yet to receive my money. It was paid via paypal, so I should be getting a refund instantly. This is so infuriating, I think I will be ranting about Ozsale on my blog"

They replied with:
"Hi Abigail,
Thanks for your contact message!
Your order was dispatched from our warehouse on 22/10/2013 with our postal partners.
It is extremely rare that they lose parcels but in this case it is clear an inquiry is warranted to locate your parcel.
Today I have lodged an inquiry with our courier for the consignment number JMV9170826. 
This process is out of our hands now and we expect to take up to 3 business days to complete. The case investigator will be in touch with us within this time frame with an update.
As soon as I hear from them I will be in contact with you!
While it is out of our hands we will make sure you are satisfied with any outcome at the completion this short investigation.
Happy shopping! 

I'm frankly quite confused here. According to the website and the tracking link, the order was dispatched on the 7th of November. Not sure where Saragunes got "22/10/2013" from. 

Also, where the hell is my money from the pumpkin patch order that you cancelled?!

I really cannot think of words to describe Ozsale right now, as "incompetent" and "infuriating" does not even come close. 

Despite having a few orders that went through smoothly, I do NOT recommend Ozsale at all because when something goes wrong, it goes REALLY wrong. I advise that you stay away unless you want premature gray hair.

18 November 2013

Updated Blog Sale

It's been a busy few days. My fiance has deserted me for work in LA (although, on the bright side, I'll get to visit him over the Christmas holidays... Sephora, here I come!), I've made responsible to sell his property, and work has decided to relocate to another office nearby (like I don't do enough packing outside of work).

After packing my cosmetics at Mike's, I've found more cosmetics I don't really want anymore. And since work's moving to a location that's within walking distance to the post office, I thought it'd be perfect timing for another blog sale (perfect timing because then I can use the proceeds to buy more crap I don't need in the states over Christmas break).

Please head over to the Blog Sale tab above or click here to see what I've got for sale!

13 November 2013

NOTD: Orly Surreal Collection - Pink Waterfall & Pixie Powder

It's been a while since I did a NOTD post, considering I change the colour of my nails every few days. Today, I have two polishes from the Orly Limited Edition Surreal Collection to share.

L-R: Pink Waterfall and Pixie Powder
The first nail polish is Pink Waterfall, which is described as a pink creme. It is a purpley-pink, and you could get away with one coat. It's also surprisingly non-streaky.

Two coats of Orly Pink Waterfall
I love that it has a super glossy finish, however, I did have to put a coat of fast-drying top coat over the top, as I smudged a few nails because it took a little too long to dry for my liking.

One coat of pixie powder over the top of Pink Waterfall on ring finger.
The second nail polish is Pixie Powder, which is described as a light purple with gold shimmer. It reminds me of an artificial purple christmas tree for some strange reason. I also would say that it has more of a silver shimmer than a gold one. Regardless, it's a really gorgeous shade and it looks amazing over the top of Pink Waterfall.

I'm not sure when they changed their bottles, but I love them with their black almost rubbery caps.

These two polishes can be purchased from the orly website, along with the other four polishes from the Surreal collection for $18.95 each.

These products were kindly provided for my consideration. All opinions expressed are my own.

07 November 2013

Wantable - November 2013

I friggin love Wantable! I know I said this last month, but I cannot believe how efficient they are at sending out beauty boxes. Unlike the other monthly subscription boxes currently on the market, Wantable is a company that sends out FULL-SIZED products tailored to your preferences. They also have an intimates, accessories and limited edition holiday boxes. Each box costs USD$36 a month or USD$40 for a one-off box, and shipping applies for Canadian (USD$5) and Australian (USD$9) orders. Enough crapping on about how Wantable is amazing and how everything else is dog poo in comparison, let's get started on what I received in my Wantable November box!

I received four full sized products and a bonus item in this month's box. In case you were wondering, in the "love" category, I had brows, eyeliner, blush, lip colour, nail polish, lash product, tools, complexion products and fair (skin colour). In the "like" category, I had highlighter, bronzer and eye shadow. It's great to see that all the items received (bonus included) were all from the "love" category!

1. Pomegranate Nail Lacquer in Rose Garden Romance - RRP: USD $8.50
"Rose Garden Romance is a rich red creme. Our long-wearing polish glides on smooth for a great finish. All of our polish is made in the USA, "4-free" - contains NO toulene, formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate (DBP) or comphor, and is free of animal testing."

I LOVE nail polish, and I haven't many reds. The polish is actually a few shades darker than this. I have yet to swatch it but I can't wait to wear this!

2. Michael Marcus Plump Lip Plumper - RRP: USD$20.00
"This must-have product is enriched with natural emollients to plump lips by increasing shine, hydration, and volume. After 15 days of regular use, you'll see more hydrated, fuller and more voluptuous lips. Castor Oil provides a protective, shiny appearance after application, Beeswax moisturizes, Vitamins A& E are natural antioxidants that protect the lips from free radical damage, and Wintergreen, Spearmint, and Peppermint increase circulation, adding warmth and flush to lips."

I gave this a quick swipe on my lips and it tasted like toothpaste. I can't say it's pleasant, as its a strong taste that lasts a rather long time. Upon application, my lips tingled and I wouldn't describe it as a warm feeling like Wantable did on the info paper, it's more of a cool feeling like the effects of menthol. My lips also felt hydrated and smooth. I may be able to look past the strong toothpaste taste!

3. Beauty For Real True Color Lip Cream in Barely There - RRP: USD$22.00
"Full coverage, long wearing lip cream with no smudging or bleeding. Barely There is everyone's favourite nude shade. Creamy, light beige with a hint of sheer pink shade."

They are not joking when they say it's full coverage (swatch below)! The shade I received is definitely a my-lips-but-better shade. It's really wearable and non sticky! I can also see why they say it's long-wearing, as it took a lot of scrubbing to remove the swatch from my arm.

4. Girlactik Beauty Precise Marker Liner - RRP: USD$19.00
"This Precise Marker Liner is designed to create a super thin or thick dramatic line, since the tip is so soft and precise. The formula is weightless, long lasting, water resistant, smudge proof and lies comfortably on the eye with no pulling or tugging. With all of these things, how can applying eyeliner be hard these days!"

I swatched this and was impressed at how pigmented it is. I love the foam-ish style tip of this eyeliner, however I found it a tat hard to create a "super thin" line. The smudge proof test also failed, but it might be due to me not letting the eyeliner dry for long enough.

L-R: Beauty for Real lip cream, "thick" swatch of Girlactik Beauty eyeliner, "thin" swatch of Girlactik Beauty eyeliner
Pointing out the obvious here, but on the left side is the swatch prior to smudging and the right is the swatch after smudging (I did not touch the Beauty for Real lip cream). I only waited about a minute before doing the swatch test. I think if I waited a couple more minutes, it would have dried properly and perhaps would pass the smudge proof test, as I did the thick swatch first and there's less smudging than the thin swatch.

5. BONUS - Kikkerland Glam Girl Matchbox Emery files
"This handy matchbook of nail files is small and lightweight, perfect for your bag! The matchbook-style cover will ensure nothing else in your bag gets scratched up!"

I really should have taken a picture of the actual files #beautybloggerfail, as the files are printed with different girls (cartoon/comic style). It's kind of cute but slightly freaky. I think these will be perfect for travelling!

Overall, I'm not surprisingly impressed with Wantable yet again. It's probably not very fair that I compare Wantable with the Australian beauty box companies, since the brands that the Australian beauty box companies have access to probably aren't as generous to provide full sized products or are limited to brands, but I can't help it. It's not just the brands that sets Wantable apart from other companies, but also their customer service, and time management skills (sending out boxes at the beginning of the month, or even at the end of the previous month). Furthermore, they handpick products according to YOUR preferences. Gone are the days where you are completely disgusted at the products you receive in your beauty box, that is meant to be like a Christmas/Birthday present from yourself to yourself every month. If you are umming and ahhing about subscribing to Wantable, I suggest you give it a go, I promise you won't regret it (well, I certainly hope you don't)! Unfortunately, Wantable is only available to residents of USA, Canada and Australia.

05 November 2013

The winners of my belated 1 year blogiversary are....

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congratulations J-Mei & Laura! J-Mei has won the international prize pack and Laura has won the nail polish pack. I will be sending you ladies an email shortly, so keep an eye out and make sure you respond within 48 hours!

03 November 2013

October Empties

I can't believe it's less than eight weeks till Christmas and I haven't even started thinking about Christmas shopping yet! I'm not usually this unorganized. I usually would have a list in my head by now and start looking out for things, but I've been so busy with work during the weekdays and getting the fiance's house ready for sale over the weekends. Hopefully, the house sells soon so it'll be one less thing to worry about.

I did not finish many products in October, so this will be a fairly short post.

1 & 2. Face of Australia Purifying Cleansing Wipes & Johnson's Face Care Daily Essentials Oil Balancing Facial Cleansing Wipes 
I actually forgot to include one of these cleansing wipes in my empties post last month (I think it was the Face of Australia one). I've used quite a number of packets of both the Face of Australia and Johnson's oil balancing facial wipes before and both have made an appearance in an empties post (see here and here). I can't actually decide which is better, but I'm leaning towards the Face of Australia one because when it's on special, it's really cheap. Both these wipes aren't as moist as I'd like them to be, but they get the job done (I like to use these prior to washing my face with my clarisonic).
3. Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer
I am in LOVE with this primer. It makes my skin feel so darn soft and smooth. I also love that it's waterproof and is oil-absorbing. Needless to say, I've purchased the full sized bottle despite the hefty price tag of USD$52.00. The only thing I hate is the bottle - I can't seem to get the product at the bottom out! Grrr!

4. Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation in Nude
I only used this once, but I liked it so much, I purchased the foundation when I bought the veil mineral primer. The reason why I used it once is because it's not in my shade. I love that it has a powdery finish, which is perfect for oily skin. I bought this in the shade called "Shell". Fingers crossed it's the right shade!

5. Summer's Eve Feminine Wash
Because every female should be incorporating feminine wash as part of their everyday body cleansing routine.

6. St Tropez Gradual Tan Firming Plus
This is the reason why I have beautifully tanned legs! This does not look streaky, fades evenly and doesn't look orangey. It's also super easy to apply. The only con is that you have to be really careful and make sure you wipe your hands clean or you might end up with darker patches where you've missed. I would repurchase this!

7. Joico Moisture Recovery Treatment Balm
Not impressed with this treatment balm. It did nothing for my dry, damaged hair. Would not repurchase.

8. Lush Rehab
Not impressed with this either. I didn't like the smell of it, and it took me forever to finish this tiny bottle even though I use more than I needed each time because I kept putting off using it. Also, I think this gave me an itchy scalp. Would not repurchase.

That's it for last month's empties! What did you empty last month?

Also, the winners of my belated 1 year blogiversary giveaway will be announced shortly! :)

01 November 2013

Review: Born Pretty Store Nail Stickers & 3D Bows

To make up for my long, lengthy rant in my previous post (read here), I thought I'd share a couple of  manis I've sported recently using some products from Born Pretty Store.

The first mani is Zoya Shelby with Starrily Unicorn Chronicles on top, and a 3D bow on my ring finger. I used regular nail glue to stick the 3D bow on.

I really love the look of the 3D bow on my ring finger, as it transforms a relatively simple/boring manicure into something that looks so much more complex, yet cute.

 I thought the bow would fall off after a few hours, but was pleasantly surprised that it lasted for days, until I got sick of it and ripped it off. I was surprised, yet again, at how easy it was to remove. I thought it was going to be a struggle to rip it off without ripping my nails to pieces, but it was relatively easy.

The only thing that I didn't like about the 3D bow was it kept getting stuck in my hair, as I have very knotty/tangley hair, and every time I did my hair and brushed my fingers through, the bow would get momentarily stuck.

However, it's a small price to pay (literally) because Born Pretty Store sells 10 of these bows for $1.99 (purchase here), and they're reusable!!!

For the second mani, I used a few nail stickers to make my nail of the day look fancier than it actually is.
I was sent three packets of these nail stickers, which I thought would look really cute on almost every shade of pink or nude polished nails. There are heaps of other similar nail stickers for sale at the Born Pretty Store for $0.99 per packet (buy here)!

After umm-ing and ahh-ing over which one of the three to use, I finally settled on this one.

I decided to use it over Sally Hansen's Gray-T Escape (which was also sent to me for review) on my ring finger and thumb (see below).

I then used a coat of Seche Vite over the top to seal everything in place. You can hardly tell that it's a sticker!

I then tried to do my right hand, and failed miserably. I didn't realise the sticker wasn't stuck on properly (it wasn't flat) until I started putting a coat of Seche Vite on. It didn't look too bad but it wasn't perfect, and since I'm so crazily pedantic about my nails and my OCD kicked in, I HAD to remove it and choose another sticker.

Sorry about the bit of dirt/hair on my nail
It took me quite a while to decide which sticker to use, as none seemed big enough for my thumb nail to look right (if that makes any sense). I eventually picked one (the one on the left side of my thumb nail) and since it looked like my nail was missing something, I decided to pick one from the other two sheets. I then blinged it up by sticking some pink rhinestones, which I received from my future mother-in-law for christmas (but Born Pretty Store sells rhinestones - 100pcs for $0.99 here), and added the white loveheart and pink and reddish-pink flowers on the top left side of my nail.

I finished it off with a coat of Seche Vite, and was really pleased with the result.

If you'd like to purchase anything from the Born Pretty Store, I've got a 10% coupon for you!

These products (with the exception of the Zoya polish, nail rhinestones, flower and love heart stickers) were kindly provided for my consideration. All opinions expressed are my own.