Many good things were said about the Byredo fragrance line, although I’ve always been interested to try, there’s not a location near me where I can easily go and sniff all the scents they offer, and at $150 for 50ml I was not about to find out by blindly purchasing.
A couple weeks ago I had the chance to travel to NYC for work and was able to stop by their store in SOHO, the lady was very helpful and based on what I told her on my preference in scent picked out a couple for me to smell in store. At the time, I fell in love with Bal d’Afrique but wanted to see how the scent change on me throughout the day, so I wore Bal d’Afrique on one hand and Gypsy Water on the other as I travel home.
I’m very glad I waited to purchase because I ended up liking Gypsy Water more and more as the day goes by. I was able to order them on Net-A-Porte through ebates (gotta get that cashback!), and honestly this is probably the first perfume purchase I made that I’m 100% in love with. I do not have the most sophisticated nose, nor can I really pick out or name each note within a perfume, I just know what I like and don’t like when I smell them. I’ve always loved the idea of perfume or having your own scent, not in the sense to costume create one for myself but something that when my friends and family smell it they think of me, and I have a couple that I like a lot but none that make me have the heart eye emoji every time I smell them. I’m so happy I was able to try out Byredo and can pretty confidently say that I’ve found a scent for me! To me, Gypsy Water smells super refreshing but at the same time sweet and mature. It is very comforting and warm, on me it lasts a whole day and I just love smelling it throughout the day when I wear it.
Although I love love loveee Gypsy Water, I also loved Bal d’Afrique and have also placed an order for the roller ball Bal d’Afrique (I would like to eventually add a regular size of it to my collection, but baby steps), I can’t wait to have them both on my regular rotation!
Have you tried any Byredo scents? What are some of your favorites?
During my last visit to NYC, I was able to stop by the glossier show room and test out their new Cloud Paint in person. First of all, I love their show room! The space is small but you can easily walk around and browse/try all products, and everything is so visually pleasing.
I went in with one goal in mind and that is to test out all the shades for Cloud Paint and figure out which 2 I want (they’re running a 2 for $30 deal!). I knew I wanted Dusk as an easy, neutral blush but couldn’t decide between Haze and Puff, after playing around with all of them I ended up picking up Haze, a darker berry tone blush over Puff which is a pretty baby pink because the darker tone works so well with my complexion. I loved how easy it was to use them, the finish is beautiful and so natural, literally, like you’re naturally blushing. It was love at first dab. But one note on them is that a little goes a longggg way, but no worries if you used a little too much, they’re so easy to blend, even with Haze.
Ever since I got my hands on them I’ve forgo my powder blushes. I no longer need to have a finished base to apply blush, as I use Cloud Paint straight on a bare face that’s freshly cleansed and moisturized face. It gives me a beautiful effortless flush in the matter of seconds, no prep work required, and on top of that the longevity is amazing, at the end of the work day I can still clearly see the blush on my cheeks. Cloud Paint is really every girl’s shortcut to achieve rosy cheeks! I definitely recommend you give them a try!
This Valentine’s Day Charlotte Tilbury came out with two limited edition lipsticks to celebrate the holiday, a newly created color Valentine in the K.I.S.S.I.N.G formula and their famous Lip Cheat color Pillow Talk in the Matte Revolutionary formula. I’ve actually been eyeing Charlotte Tilbury’s lip products for the longest time and I love the swatch of pillow talk, but since I don’t really use lip liner and prefer to purchase a lipstick instead, I was hoping to find a shade that speaks to me like Pillow Talk did in their lipstick range. But unfortunately nothing has made me want to pull the trigger to purchase. So when I heard they’re coming out with a Pillow Talk lipstick, I was beyond excited and immediately went onto her website to pick one up for myself.
This is my very first Charlotte Tilbury purchase and I’m incredibly pleased with everything, from the packaging it was delivered in, to the product itself. The lipstick came in the standard CT rose gold packaging, very elegant and a beautiful piece that could be added to any counter top display. I have many nude lipstick in my collection, but most of them are either have a brown-ish undertone or a warmer brick undertone. Pillow talk is a beautiful pink-y nude that is super wearable but at the same time gives a very “sweet” look. The color applies opaque and it looks exactly the same in the bullet as when you apply on the lips which is amazing because for some reason when I wear a nude lipstick the undertone is usually exaggerated (probably because of my natural lip color) and sometimes nudes can look a little lifeless on me, so I really love the fact that the color doesn’t change on my lips or pull an undertone of the lipstick. And on top of that, it’s probably the best matte formula I’ve tried! It is not drying and doesn’t tug on your lips when applying, and the best part is it doesn’t settle and enhance the lines on your lips.
Overall I’m super surprised and impressed by this lipstick, this makes me want to try more colors in the range, I foresee a darker red and a peachy nude in my future…
Have you tried any of her lipsticks? What’s your favorite formula and color?
The beginning of the year is always a good time to reflect and review the last year, and this year I wanted to start the habit of looking back at what I’ve purchased, used, and loved. I pulled out all the beauty products I have and complied a list of my favorites/most reached for. Here are the items I just can’t stop using in 2016 (in no particular order)!
- Too Faced Sweet Peach Eye Shadow Collection Palette
This palette has a lot of fun color that is not traditional for me, but for some reason I love using it. It has enough neutrals if you want something simple, but lots of fun colors if you’re feeling like adding some pops of colors. I also love the peach scent (I know that’s a hit or miss with people). It was a limited addition that lauchend earlier last year, but they re-released it with a bunch of other peach themed items at the end of 2016, so if you wanted to try one but couldn’t get your hands on them the first time around, make sure to check them out now!
- Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion in Anti Aging
I’ve been a loyal follower of the Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer. I have not venture out a lot when it comes to eyeshadow primer, but of the ones I’ve tried, this one works best for me, and if it aint broken, why fix it?
- Buxom Lash Waterproof Mascara
This one was recommended to me by my coworker. I love the formular and the wand is really easy to use. I’m not very picky when it comes to mascara but most of them smudge on my bottom lash line (even some waterproof ones), so when I found this one I was extremely happy.
- Glossier (everything)
Glossier is definitely the standout beauty brand for me in 2016, I was a little slow to try out their initial line of items because I already had things that serve the same purpose in my collection. My first encounter with them is the Boy Brow and Generation G, I have not touch any other brow gel since I got my hands on the Boy Brow, and although the first iteration of Generation G was not a big hit for me, I love the newly reformulated version that they came out with later on in 2016! I’m not a big fan of foundation because I just don’t like the way they feel on my face, but when I started using the Perfecting Skin Tint I was hooked. I never used to like putting on foundation on a daily bases but now the Perfecting Skin Tint is my go to everyday base! It’s so easy to apply and feels pretty much invisible on my face, and helps even out my skin tone so effortlessly. When they came out with the Stretch Concealer I was a little afraid because I’ve never found a concealer that makes me feel comfortable, feels natural, and doesn’t crease up or look cakey. This one, though, is a total game changer. It’s easy to apply, so creamy, and looks so natural. It’s the one and only concealer I use.
- Too Faced Teddy Bear Hair Powder Brush
This brush in particular is my favorite brush to use for bronzer! I have not used any other brush I have since I got this one (unless it’s dirty). The shape of it is easy to pick up the powder and apply to the face, it’s also extremely soft and is cruelty-free!
- Kat Von D Tattoo Liner
For my favorite eyeliner of 2016, it has to be the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner. Like many others have said, love the applicator and the formular is easy to apply. But unlike most other people, I prefer the Mad Max Brown color over trooper, I’ve always been more into brown eyeliner because I think black looks too harsh.
- Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick
The standout lipstick of the year! I really love the formula of the product and love that it’s made with natural and organic ingridents. The formula is super creamy and super pigmented, and the scent is delicious!
- Benefit Cosmetics Cheekathon Blush & Bronzer Palette
A palette that does it all for your face. It has all the cult classic face powder from Benefit at an amazing price point. This palette is my first interaction with Benefit face powders, and I have to say the hype is real! The color of Hoola is amazing and very universal, the 4 blush colors also all stand out on their own.
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Definer
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I’ve been a diehard Anastasia Brow Wiz fan since I discovered it in 2015, but when they came out with the Brow Definer, it totally one upped the Brow Wiz in the way that it’s so easy to use and doesn’t require you to be as detailed (perfect for the I’m in a rush and need to go days).
- Benefit Cosmetics Goof Proof Brow Pencil Easy Shape & Fill
Benefit came out with a bunch of brow products this year, as a person that doesn’t have a complicated brow routine, I decided to give the Goof Proof Brown Pencil a try as it seems really easy to use. I really like the formula and the packaging is very easy to handle. I would say I like this one just as much as the Brow Definer.
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Master Palette by Mario
As a late comer in 2016, this palette wasn’t released till October but it has quickly become my favorite. It’s a neutral dream with some darker colors that works hand in hand with the rest of the palette. I love the pigmentation of the palette, and the formula is even better than the Modern Renaissance Palette in my opinion. My only complain is that the palette was a limited edition so I’m dreading the day I hit pan (should’ve gotten a backup).
- Becca Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection Face Palette (not pictured)
2016 was the year of highlight, but I didn’t purchase any individual pan because I wasn’t very into it at first. When Becca came out with the Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection Face Palette including 3 extremely pigmented blush and the highlighters Jaclyn created- Champagne Pop and Prosecco Pop, I thought it’s a great way to get my feet wet. I’m really happy with the palette and loveee both highlighter, I can’t say that they’re my all time favorite since I haven’t tried much other than these two and the Becca Opal, but it’s definitely a palette worth mentioning. Champagne Pop is now part of the permanent collection and I know they still have some of the split pans available on Sephora if you want to give their highlighter/blush a try!
I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to get to this post, but better late than never!
I have a couple of Bite Beauty Lipsticks and I love the formula, so Back in October when I took a trip to NYC, I knew I couldn’t pass on the chance to visit the Bite Beauty Lip Lab and create some for myself. I opt for the standard color option instead of customizing a color for myself, and ended up spending more than half an hour picking out the colors I want (definitely very glad I didn’t go custom because I might be there all day trying every color combo possible).
With the 2 color options I picked out a MLBB neutral color in their Amuse Bouche formula and a deep berry color in their matte formula. I really enjoy the experience of trying out different colors/formula leisurely and without having to clean out each lipstick before I try them like when you have to do in store. It is funny to see the colors I’m drawn to in the tube and the colors that I actually like when it’s on me. I think I’m starting to get a hang of picking out the correct color for myself. I forced myself to picked out a bold, fun color because I already have so many nude lipsticks and really want to branch out and add some bold lip options to my collection, and I’m so happy with the berry color I picked out. It’s so perfect for fall and winter and the matte formula is extremely comfortable and not drying. It’s not as matte as M.A.C. but I find that even though I love the look of matte lipsticks, I don’t usually like the way they apply on me and if they’re super matte it usually makes my lip look really wrinkly and old, so the Bite Beauty matte formula is perfect for me. I know they don’t do that formula anymore on Sephora and it might be something you can only get at the Lip Lab, so I would definitely recommend you trying it if you get a chance!
It was truly a treat getting to pick out your own color and see them making it into a tube. It would be perfect as a girls date, mother daughter date, or just as a gift for the special beauty lover in your life. The next time you visit NYC and have some time to spare, definitely check it out!
This year I notice my skin is getting more dry than usual, so I decided to explore and experiment with body creams out there. I’m actually very very excited about all the skincare and bath products I got, which I usually am not. Below I’m gonna go through all the items I purchased, some I have not had the time to fully try them out yet, so like the makeup haul, I will pop in some first impression of them!
- Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil 7 Piece Body Butter Collection
Anything in a jar usually turns me off, for sanitary reason and my own laziness. But I really wanted something thick and heavy as a winter moisturizer so I decided to give this set a try. You get 7 different scents to try which is a great way to explore a brand that’s new to you. So far I really like the body butter from how it applies to how it leaves my skin. I apply it on my body (specifically legs which gets the most dry) after I shower and it keeps my skin very hydrated and moisturized throughout the night. It is very smooth and not tacky when applying, which was my biggest fear when it comes to heavy moisturizers.
- Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Body Boom
The Bum Bum Cream has been all over the internet, I’m curious about the hype and want to know if it’ll actually tighten up my skin. During my quest of searching for some moisturizer to test out I saw the set which is only 10 dollars more than the full size Bum Bum Cream and comes with a full size body wash, so I got suckered into getting the set. I have yet to try out the moisturizer yet because I wanted to give the Josie Maran Body Butter a fair try before switching, so TBD on how it works (the packaging though is so so adorable).
- Ouai Clean Shampoo and Repair Conditioner
Reading the review online for Ouai I was really skeptical on the smell, because a lot of people said it smells like old lady (but what does that even mean?). I decided to give it a try anyway because there are also a lot of great review and I have yet to find a shampoo and conditioner set that I really love. Upon first try I actually really like the smell, it’s very subtle but comforting, it doesn’t make me nauseous or overwhelm me. I went with the Clean Shampoo and Repair Conditioner combination because I really want something that will give my scalp a good clean, but also want to avoid having it strip away all the shine or dry out my hair. So far I would say I enjoy using them, will need a longer testing period to see if it’s a repurchase worthy product.
- Moroccanoil Fleur de Rose Shampoo and Conditioner
I had a sample of this shampoo and conditioner and liked it upon initial use, but after a while, the scent got a little overwhelming. I got them during the sale because I wanted to give it another try, but when I opened the packaging without ripping off the seal of the shampoo, I knew the smell would be too much for me. It’s a beautiful rose scent, which might be beautiful for a candle, but as a shampoo and conditioner it was just a little too much. They went back to the store the next day…
- Nest Holiday Ornament Scented Candle
If you want your home to smell like Christmas, these are not only delicious smelling but the packaging is also very festive. They would be great for decorating your home for the holiday or as gifts to loved ones.
- Belif Don’t Be Flaky Gift Set
I’m a big fan of the Belif True Cream Moisturizing Bomb and have been wanting to try their Moisturizing & Firming Eye Cream because HeyClaire raves about it all the time. I’ve been hesitant to purchase the full size eye cream because I’m pretty forgetful when it comes to applying it… So this set was perfect for me! I have yet to open the Hungarian Water Essence and I honestly have no idea what it really is, so will have to give that a test run before I report back.
November to me officially marks the beginning of the holiday season. All the holiday commercials are rolling out, decorations around the stores and shopping malls are going up, and the holiday gift sets of course are always something I’m excited to see.
For this haul I’m dividing up the makup and skin/bath and body portion so hopefully the post is not too wordy. Though I just received these products not that long ago so it will be hard to give a full review, I want to run through the list and my first impression of them!
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Eye Shadow Palette
I’m extremely happy that I decided to get this palette! The colors are very different than what I usually wear but they’re all very wearable. I’m able to create looks that are very neutral but also can put out some super dramatic looks, which I lack in my collection. The formula is amazing and I really enjoy playing around with it so far.
- Viseart Blush Palette in Plum/Bronze
Pretty much all my blushes are very summer-y, so when I saw the colors in this palette I couldn’t wait to try it out. I think the colors are perfect for the fall and winter, and the bronze will be great for the days you just want a little more definition on your face but don’t want to contour. But do keep in mind that they’re extremely pigmented, so use a very light hand when applying (especially the blush).
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Master Palette by Mario (an honorable mention)
I purchased this before the sale, but want to mention this in case you see one in store. This palette is one of the most gorgeous palette I’ve seen. Yes it’s another neutral palette, but I just couldn’t resist. The colors are so beautiful and the formula is so buttery, though I would be careful with the fallout. If you happen to come across this palette, BUY IT! It’s truly amazing.
- Tom Ford Ultra-Rich Lip Color in Revolve Around Me
This is my first ever Tom Ford lipstick! I’ve been wanting to try one but they don’t carry Tom Ford in the Nordstrom near me and I simply can’t justify buying a $53 lipstick… So when I saw Sephora started carrying some of their makeup items, I knew this would be my chance to try. The packaging is beautiful as you would expect, and I’m a little afraid to try the lipstick because I feel like I’m going to ruin the embossed logo, haha. I really do love the color from looking at it in the bullet tho, and can’t wait to try it out.
- Besame Cosmetics Classic Color Lipstick in Red Velvet
Red lips is something I love when I see it on others but never had the courage to try. When I discover this brand, I was very intrigued by their “classic reds” statement and the interesting shape of their lipstick. I got the Red Velvet which is slightly deeper red and not as orange or bright as a true red, but I think it suites my skin tone better.
- Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in Uptight
Another neutral lipstick, because a girl simply can’t have enough neutrals. I tried this color in store a while back and have been waiting for the sale to get it. I went with Uptight which is a Comfort Matte formula, a medium neutral color that is warm but not too brown. Sometimes I find a cool tone neutral can make me look a little dead so after many trial and error, I think I finally know what shades suites me best when it comes to neutral lipsticks.
- Buxom Lash Waterproof Mascara
Mascara is not something I get very excited about. I can never really tell the difference other than if it smudges on me or not. My eyelashes are not that impressive so even with a volumizing mascara, you can’t really tell the difference from regular mascara. I was recommended this by my coworker so I thought why not? I plan on giving it a few try to see if it makes me feel “wow”.
Can you tell I’m a little obsessed with Glossier? They’re hands down my favorite makeup brand for when I want an effortless look. I’ve been holding out on getting the original Glossier product Balm Dotcom because I have so many lip balms and chapsticks sitting around my house, though I’ve been dying to try them. So after a couple of months of clearing out my balm/chapstick stash, I was finally at the point where it’s time to restock!
With my parents coming to visit next month, I thought it’s a good idea to get extras for my mom and have her bring a few back for some of my friends in Taiwan to try. I ended up ordering the Balm Dotcom Trio and the Coconut Balm Dotcom, and now I’m having a hard time deciding which one to keep.
Their packaging is always so cute, and the graphic design is beautiful but funky at the same time. I think of all 4 of these, I would most likely be keeping the rose because I love the hint of color in the rose and the scent is just so dreamy, but I also like how versatile the coconut can be because you can use it for dry patches on the skin as well since it’s colorless. Decisions decisions… But either way, I’m excited to give these a go, and who knows, I might just end up ordering all of them again for myself later on…
Summer always makes me long for beachy waves and blond hair. My hair was already pretty light after my trip back to Taiwan, and recently I decided to chop it off for a change. Not only did I chop off 6″ of my hair, I also ended up doing some color correction and got rid of the very obvious roots growing on my head, and I’m loving my new hair do! Now I pretty much have a balayage which is something I’ve always wanted to try!
With a new hair cut, I thought it was appropriate to get some fun hair products to go along with it. I’ve heard so many good things about Oribe, and I finally ordered some of their products to try.
First lets start with the Gold Lust Hair Oil which I have been eyeing for the longest time. I’ve notice my hair getting really dry since the coloring/highlighting session in February, and I’ve been desperately looking for a solution for it. This is the perfect match for what I was looking for! It’s light weight, but feels very nourishing and helps fix the dryness of my hair. I love that it doesn’t make me feel greasy or leave my hair looking oily, it gives just enough oomph on the dry parts.
Second is the Matt Wave Texture Lotion, a product that is supposed to give you the salt spray beach waves but without the dryness. Sounds like a dream come true! I wasn’t really sure what I was expecting out of this because I have stick straight hair and salt sprays usually don’t work that well on me. And as expected, when I first used it as directed and let my hair air dry, it only gives me the pieciness of being at the beach but unfortunately with no waves. After experimenting with it for a few times, I find it very helpful when I put it in before I blow dry/style my hair. It kind of acts as a pre styling cream and helps hold the curls and it gives a little bit of the pieciness to create a more “beach like” look. Although it doesn’t give me beachy waves just by air drying, it does help me get there with a little help!
Lastly is the very much hyped Dry Texturizing Spray that I was always hesitant to purchase because I have not had good experiences with hair spray in the past. I was lucky to have a coupon code for a sample size can so I could try it before committing to the full size one, I used it for the first time today and the result is seriously amazing. I really love the texture it adds to my hair after curling, it gives my roots some much needed lift and make the overall look that much more effortless (though we all know the effortless look are the ones that takes the most effort).
Overall I’m very pleased with my Oribe purchase! It left a very good first impression on me and I’m excited to experiment around more with them. What are some of your favorite hair products? What would you recommend someone with really straight hair like me to try to achieve a nice and long lasting beachy wave hair?
There’s something so satisfying about using sheet masks that words can’t really explain. I love the way my skin feels after I did a mini sheet mask session at home and wish I could get my hands on all the ones out there.
I’ve seen a lot of different types of sheet masks from Korea and have been wanting to give them a try, but they’re not easy to get and you also don’t know if you can trust the source you’re ordering from (read some reviews on Amazon where people got moldy ones, ew!). So I’ve opt for the easiest ones I can find from a place I trust – Sephora! As you can see I couldn’t decide what I need, so I got a little bit of everything to try.
So far, I’m really liking the consistency, it is light weight and not too gooey on the face. Though the serum gets a little sticky when you try to use the leftover ones on your hand/arm/leg, it doesn’t leave that feeling on the face. I think occasionally treating yourself to some sheet masks really helps you relax, because you’re practically forcing yourself to relax for 15 minutes, and on top of that you don’t have to deal with the hassle of washing it off, which is great for using right before you go to sleep.
I can’t wait to try them all and explore other brands! Let me know what brands are your favorite and which ones you would recommend me trying next!