Beauty bits and pieces: Max Factor Lasting Performance foundation, Vaseline spray moisturiser and Revlon Love Is On lipstick

Max Factor Lasting Performance foundation (R195,95, Clicks) has been around since dinosaurs roamed the earth but – confession alert – I’d never tried it. That is until now. I was recently given two shades to try as the product’s gotten a little packaging upgrade and its left me really impressed.

Hello, hello!

Hello, hello!

The promise is a full eight hours of touch-proof coverage that, despite wearing like iron, is suitable for even sensitive skin and it delivers. I like that, despite lasting all day, it doesn’t feel masky or heavy in the least. In fact, the best way to describe the coverage is sheer to mid-weight with a matte-finish, making it a nice pick for anyone who’s not really looking to hide anything and really just wanting to even things out and create a ‘base’ the rest of your make-up can cling to.

Speaking of clinging, I tried another foundation a while back that shifted around on my oily-combo skin and settled into the fine lines that are developing just below my eyes. (Don’t we love the crepey-ness that starts to kick in after 35? Getting old is sooo much fun, yo!) Max Factor’s darling, however, didn’t budge. Once it was on it was on. (You just need to move fast as it sets quickly.)

Bronze on the left and BLAH on the right.

Natural Bronze on the left (a perfect match when I’m in self tan) and Natural Beige on the right (a perfect match when I’m not).

Overall – and again this is due to being older – I lean towards foundations with a bit more of a satin finish and then matte down my T-panel with powder which is why light reflecting options like Max Factor’s Ageless Elixir Miracle foundation and L’Oreal’s Nutri Lift Gold, but ten years ago fabulously affordable Lasting Performance would’ve been a make-up bag staple. Over-priced, over-hyped Lauder Double Wear be damned!

More news? Vaseline has launched a new cleverness that is Intensive Care spray moisturiser (R89.95). Available in three variants – Aloe Soothe, Deep Restore and Cocoa Radiant – it’s essentially a fast-absorbing moisturising fluid in an aerosol bottle that lets you hydrate in a flash.

The press kit included a bunch of my Instagrams printed on fridge magnets. Cute, ne?

The press kit included a bunch of my Instagrams printed on fridge magnets. Cute, ne?

Of all three, I most like the Aloe Soothe option. It’s got a fresh, clean scent and actually contains a decent amount of aloe leaf juice. (The main ‘active’ here, however, is good ole’ glycerine along with petroleum that the brand’s referring to as ‘microdroplets of Vaseline jelly’).

To use it, simply spritz it on your bod – it goes on like a milky fluid – and then rub it in with your hand and BOOM, you’re done. There’s no having to wait around for it to absorb. It sucks into your skin in a flash and yep, Vaseline’s right, it’s not greasy in the least. Happy days people! Happy summer days! Also, if you’d like to try it, now’s the time. Clicks is running a ‘buy any 3 selected Vaseline products and get the cheapest free’ promo until 9 October.

Lastly, Revlon have created a limited edition Super Lustrous lipstick called Love Is On (R149) and its a serious winner.

Love!

Love!

A ‘universally flattering’ red, it’s a lovely blue-toned rooi, something I love as it does a great job of creating the illusion of whiter teeth. I also like that its got a subtle sweet scent and think the love-related inscriptions written on the tube is pretty cute. (According to Revlon, it helps the lippie act as a secret charm to draw more passion into your life. They’re so sold on the concept they say it’s guaranteed to work ‘or your money back’. Hokey magic love spells aside, I don’t see anyone wanting to return this dude. Its colour, in a lovely satin finish, really is gorgeous!)

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Love Is On… my wrist!

I’m currently typing in sweaty gym rags but when I’m dolled up and find good lighting I’ll be sure to update with an ‘on face’ shot. Still, if you want to snap up this lovely lippie be sure to get it at Clicks. Another of their ‘buy 3, get the cheapest free’ promos relates to selected Revlon items, but only until 9 October.

Love, love

Leigh

Beauty bits and pieces: Dove Purely Pampering body wash, Milk Solutions Garden hand & body lotion and YSL Vinyl Cream

Dove have recently launched a new line called Purely Pampering that aims to help you create a tranquil spa-like experience in your home. To celebrate the launch, they sent me a pamper pack that included the new shower gels and soaps plus a yummy little box of vanilla-infused dried coconut flakes that lasted all of two seconds. (Thanks Dove!)

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Ready to pamper while you cleanse?

While mowing through the coconut I noticed the press kit had a little perforated area that assumed was to release some kind of relaxing aroma so I gave it sniff, smelled nothing and assumed I’d been given a dud. Oh well! I then shifted it onto the couch in my room which acts as a ‘to do’ pile of things to photograph and that was that. But noooo, this pack had plans! As it turns out, it contained a little speaker that emits the tranquil sound of bird song. I’m assuming it’s activated by movement or something but this little dude just didn’t want to work. That is until the middle of the freakin’ night when it decided to burst into a surprise peal of twittering that nearly induced a stroke a la terror! Nice one Dove, you assholes.

Just kidding. You know I like your shizzle, with a special shout out to your epic Intensive Repair hair treatment. But let’s get back to Purely Pampering. Two variants are available, Shea Butter & Vanilla and Coconut & Jasmine Petals, and both are lovely. Some days I think I like super subtle coconut best and then, when the weather’s a little cooler, I like the warmer, cosier Shea/Vanilla fragrance. I’ve yet to try the soaps (I’m not really a soap person) but both the washes do a great job of cleansing without stripping and provide a relaxing sensory treat. If you’d like to try them, now’s a good time to buy as Clicks is offering 20% off selected Dove products (including the body washes and soap plus hair care) until 23 October.

Moving on, let’s chat about a proudly South African product that’s going global and that’s Milk Solutions, a professional range of spa products with a focus on manis and pedis. It’s divvied up into three lines – Milk & Honey, Fruit and Garden and I was given a few from the latter to play with.

Milk Solutions Garden goodies.

Milk Solutions Garden goodies.

I liked that the Garden goodies were all nicely formulated using loads of top-notch hydrators and antioxidant rich botanicals. For me, the stand out was the Rooibos & Honey Hand & Body Balm.

Milk Solutions Garden Rooibos & Honey Hand & Body Balm

Milk Solutions Garden Rooibos & Honey Hand & Body Balm, R255.

It’s got a gel-creme texture, absorbs like lightning and left my skin feeling nice and supple with the gentle scent of rooibos and honey. As far as ‘actives’ go, it’s loaded with replenishing glycerin, omega-rich grape seed oil, Shea butter and watermelon seed oil. Most interestingly though, there’s a whackload of Kigelia Africana extract in the mix. Also known as ‘the sausage tree’ due to the weird, sausage-shaped fruit it produces, it’s extract, which has antibacterial properties, has been said to be great for anyone suffering from sensitive, irritated skin as well as conditions like eczema and psoriasis.

Interestingly, I can’t find honey or rooibos listed in the ingredients list, but perhaps they’ve just been used to provide the fragrance. There is, however, a dash of antioxidant, collagen-encouraging vitamin E as well as a smidge of retinyl palmitate, an ultra mild version of retinol.

To find a spa in your area stocking Milk Solutions products you can visit their website where you can also purchase the products online.

Lastly, you should know YSL’s added to their divine lip stain range. As you know, I’m a big fan of their Rouge Pur Couture glossy stain, a glossy liquid lippie that wears off to reveal a long-lasting stain. Now, they’ve created Vinyl Cream lip stain (R520), an intensely pigmented ever so slightly less glossy (but still glossy) lip colour that also leaves a stainalicious pop of colour in its wake.

Hello new friends!

Hello new friends!

..

A precision tip makes applying easier but I tend to end up using my finger to smooth it out once on.

A precision tip makes applying easier but I tend to end up using my finger to smooth it out once on.

I’ve noticed the Vinyl Cream is a bit less tacky and a bit more sheer than the glossy stain, so in a way, it’s really more of a beautifully pigmented liquid lippie that feels fabulously comfortable on your lips. I liked that the initial cream aspect, despite feeling slightly more lightweight, was long-lasting. Then, when it wears off after a few glassies of bubbles, you can rest assured that your lips are still rocking the stain which is incredibly long-wearing so you’re never without a pop of colour.

BLAH and BLAH slicked on the left and in their stain form on the right.

Explicit Pink and Rhythm Red slicked on the left and in their stain form on the right. Note that the ‘red’ is actually a coral shade.

Want, want, want? They’re exclusive to the gorgeous new YSL boutique in Sandton City. Speaking of exclusive, you’ll notice the new YSL Touche Eclat Slogan edition highlighter pen in my piccie up top. It featured on my Instagram and twitter very early in the month so you girls could grab it while it was hot as it was a very limited edition that was sure to sell out in days.

Were you one of the lucky few to nab one? I’ve literally just called the store to see what’s left and have been told they still have fifteen pens in shade no. 2. If you want one, you better run, run, run!

Love, love

Leigh

Review: The Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal purifying glow mask with bamboo charcoal and green tea

The Body Shop have just launched a new line up of 100-percent vegetarian ‘super food’ face masks (R300 each), many of which are vegan, and free of parabens, silicone, mineral oils and paraffins. Each one draws inspiration from a destination like the Amazon or Ethiopia and aims to achieve a beauty goal like hydration, brightening or energizing.

Let's get masky masky!

Let’s get masky masky!

At a recent launch, we were given the option to choose one and I picked Himalayan Charcoal purifying glow mask with bamboo charcoal and green tea.

Hello new friend!

Hello new friend!

It contains loads of kaolin (clay) which I know is a surefire way to pull oil from your pores so I knew it would hit home. Also, green tea’s a great antioxidant and it sits nice and high up in the ingredients list.

A peek in the jar.

A peek in the jar.

Other great notable ingredients include charcoal (another nice impurity magnet), hydrating argan oil and Shea butter, soothing aloe and bacteria-busting tea tree oil. To be fair, on the downside, the mask also contains a high amount of alcohol, a fair amount of fragrance and a little menthol. The latter gives the mask a tingly sensation which some users have mistaken for the sensation of it ‘working’ but that’s not the case. The clay and charcoal can easily work their magic without it.

Bringing sexy back in a big way.

Bringing sexy back in a big way.

Having used it a few times now I can say I’ve really enjoyed it. It really does leave my oily-combo skin feeling super clean with pores that look more ‘refined’ but hasn’t dried me out. My top tip is to apply it before you’re going to jump in the shower and bath and then remove it with a warm wash cloth as once it sets it dries fully and eventually ‘cracks’ and shifting it with a wet wipe is a serious las.

Love, love

Leigh

Review: BioNike Defence Elixage R3 Huile Serum

BioNike (you pronounce it bee-yo-nee-kay), Dis-Chem’s Italian cosmetics brand for those with sensitive or allergy-prone skin, has launched a new anti-ageing line up called Defence Elixage R3 that includes a day cream, night cream, eye and lip cream as well as an oil-serum. Like all BioNike products, everything’s free of gluten, fragrance, preservatives and nickel.

This is the night cream - Nuit BLAH, PRICE.

BioNike Defence Elixage R3 intensive night treatment, R645, Dis-Chem.

As you know I’m not crazy about products in jar packaging so my top pick of the bunch would be the oil-serum – BioNike Defence Elixage R3 Huile Serum regenerating oil (R645, Dis-Chem) that I’ve repackaged into a very unglamorous-looking air-free pump. Its ingredients include antioxidant, collagen-boosting vitamin E; hydrating Shea Butter esters (a lovely weightless form of Shea Butter) and other natural hydrators in the form of antioxidant-rich oils like grape seed, watermelon, olive and prickly pear.

It smells like lollipops thanks to a non-irritating natural fragrance blend.

You can use it as is or mix it into your day or night cream for an extra boost.

BioNike say their oil serum makes use of something they refer to as GGP to help preserve the length of your skin cell’s telomeres. (To be honest, I’m not sure what this is as listed as in the ingredients list.) Telomeres help protect your cell’s chromosomes and get shorter over time, every time they replicate. Older skin will have short telomeres, whereas younger skin generally has longer telomeres. To date, scientists are still not sure shortened telomeres are merely a sign of aged skin or a cause but BioNike’s logic is that protecting the length of these structures could help delay the ageing process. It’s an interesting theory but I personally think its something that needs more research. Also, GGP isn’t the only thing that can help preserve your telomeres but comparative studies don’t exist so, if you did want to take a telomere preservation stance I’m not sure which ingredient would be your best bet in terms of efficacy.

Either way, from a mere antioxidant-rich facial oil point of view, BioNike’s new addition is a treat. I like its soft, sweet lollipop-like scent and the fact that it absorbs into your face in a flash but leaves it feeling comfy and supple, not greasy in the least. (For the record, I’m an oily-combo skin type and it’s a complete myth that this type of skin can’t tolerate oils. You just need to pick the right ones and grapeseed oil is fabulously light and non-occlusive, meaning it won’t clog your pores in the least.)

If you’re looking for an oil to add to your daily moisturiser to bump up it’s hydration factor or something to apply directly on a day when you’re feeling dry, know that BioNike’s newbie is an indulgent, sensory-pleasing pick.

Love, love

Leigh

Woolworths’ big Beauty Festival is now on and you can get 25% off until 2 October

Good news beauties! Woolworth’s big Beauty Festival has started and runs until 2 October. This means you’ll get 20% off when you buy 2 or more beauty products PLUS an extra 5% off when you pay using your Woolies card. 

To promote the sale Woolies were kind enough to send me a beauty box that includes Alaia Paris EDP. Usually it’s R1 270 but if you make maximum benefit of the sale you can take it home for just R952. FYI, it’s a gorgeous scent that’s exclusive to Woolworths. You can read my full review on it over here.

I had no clue Woolworths now make their own setting spray. It's just R99 (R75 on sale).

I had no clue Woolworths now make their own setting spray. It’s just R99 which makes it R75 on sale.

I’ve been looking at the sale online (yep, you can shop it online too) and seen lots of things I want to get my mitts on for less, the first on the list being Woolies’ African Ingredients Calming Luxury bath milk (R135 on sale).

I've been using it for a while now and adore its soft lavender scent so much I've been hiding it from my flat mate to make it last and last!

I’ve been using it for a while now and adore its soft lavender scent so much I’ve been hiding it from my flat mate to make it last and last!

It’s also a good time to shop Stila as they’re exclusive to Woolies. Their Lip Glaze in Grapefruit (R195 if you get 25% off) is still one of my fave lip glosses to date.

Love, love

Leigh

Beauty bits and pieces: Foschini’s beauty department is online, Optiphi Hydration Tint and NIVEA Shower Care goes big

It’s time for yet more beauty bits and pieces, starting with the fact that Foschini’s beauty department has finally opened an online store – FoschiniForBeauty.co.za.

foschini

FoschiniForBeauty.co.za

All the brands you’ll find on the shelves at Foschini can now be slapped in your virtual trolley, including Dr. Brandt, Skin Nutrition and Kardashian Beauty which are all exclusive to the chain. They’re also rolling out a host of cool specials to celebrate the opening and some of the highlights include snapping up a Real Techniques core brush set worth R469,95 when you spend R500 on anything else from the brand as well as a huge Elizabeth Arden gift set containing 6 minis when you buy any two Arden products, one of which has to be a moisturiser or foundation.

More good news? If you buy for R500 or more you can enjoy free standard delivery anywhere in South Africa.

Moving on, there are new beauty goodies on the shelves you might want to know about, starting with Optiphi’s Hydration Tint moisturiser with SPF 20 (R750, selected salons).

Hello, hello!

Hello, hello!

Obviously the fact that it’s got an SPF of 20 in it is fabulous, but the anti-ageing benefits don’t stop there. You’ll also find collagen-stimulating, pigmentation-busting antioxidant vitamin C in the mix plus vitamin B3 (another good pigmentation-blitzer) and mega-moisturising, skin-plumping hyaluronic acid.

I was given the shade Light to try (there are two others, Medium and Dark) and find it works perfectly when I’m not wearing self-tan.

A nice match.

Slapped on on the left and blended on the right.

It was easy to smooth out without having to apply any kind of primer or pre-moisturiser (you’ll be surprised how many tinted moisturisers only blend into my skin if I apply them on top of another moisturiser!) and gave me a super sheer, very natural-looking veil of coverage and colour. As far as tinted moisturisers go, this is definitely one of the better ones I’ve used in ages, both from an aesthetic and formulatory point of view.

Moving on, you should know that NIVEA’s popular Shower Care & Magnolia and Shower Care & Coconut shower creams are now available in great value 500ml bottles for R49,99. (A 250ml is R32,99 so if you go big, you get double and pay R16 less. Every li’l bit counts, people!)

Go big or go home, bietse!

Go big or go home, bietse!

I’ve been enjoying using the coconut variant, both in the shower as well as in the tub as a foam bath and make-do shaving cream. I like that it makes a great lather, doesn’t feel like it’s drying out my skin (hey there jojoba oil!) and smells like a yummy coconut macaroon.

Love, love

Leigh

 

Coming up roses: Bulgari Rose Goldea, Repetto Eau Florale and Chloe Fleur de Parfum (reviews)

Spring has sprung and summer’s on its way so now’s the ideal time to invest in a pretty new scent and, if the new crop that’s launched is anything to go by, rose is this season’s note du jour. So, are you ready to dive into my reviews of three ultra feminine rose-focused new fragrances?

Let’s start with Bulgari Rose Goldea (R830 for 25ml, R1 660 for 50ml and R2 280 for 90ml). A while back I featured the original Goldea, a glamorous floriental the brand describes as a ‘golden symphony of musk’. Well, their perfumers have now fallen in love with a new precious metal and that’s rose gold – the symbol of eternal love – and the result is Rose Goldea, a celebration of rose and musk inspired by femininity, beauty and seduction of the Egyptian Queen Cleopatra.

Gorgeous, right?

Gorgeous, right?

Again, the bottle is a luxuriously heavy-feeling thing of beauty that you’re going to want to display. It’s the same shape as the Goldea bottle, but made using rose gold-coloured metal and petal pink cap.

As far as the notes are concerned, you’re looking at pomegranate, Damascena rose and jasmine absolutes, sensual white musk, white incense and sandalwood. To my nose, however, I get an opening of freshly cut roses, musk that’s as sheer as a whisper of guaze and later a soft, creamy sandalwood. In a way, it reminds me a lot of Bulgari’s Rose Essentielle but without the powder and patchouli. In a way, I kind of feel like this makes Rose Goldea a fresher, more sophisticated take on Rose Essentielle and the end result is a beautiful day time summer scent for an elegant woman, be she in her 20s, 40s or beyond.

Next up, we’ve got Repetto Eau Florale EDT (R1 095 for 80ml). Eau Florale actually launched a while back but for some reason I stuck it in my September drawer thinking it was a spring time release as it’s perfect for exactly that. A fresh, easy-to-wear floral, Repetto’s new juice is another delicate summer’s day scent that would suit a woman of any age, but is skewed towards someone younger, I think. Its notes are a cheerful mix of rose, grapefruit and plum blossom mingled with violet, cedar, patchouli and amber.

Pretty pretty!

Pretty pretty!

While I can pick up the grapefruit the moment I spritz it on, this fades fast and then I’m left with a soft, dewy rose that makes me think of a pale pink one with dew on its petals. It’s almost the only note I can pick up, save for a touch of sweetness thanks to the patchouli and plum blossom.

Lastly, let’s talk about Chloe Fleur de Parfum EDP (R975 for 30ml, R1 425 for 50ml and R1 725 for 50ml). If you’re a Chloe fan you’ll know this brand has had a love affair with roses for years and this forms the centre of the bouquet that is new Fleur de Parfum, a fragrance that intends to capture the scent of flowers at the height of their bloom. Still, it’s not heady or overtly lush in the least. In fact, it’s wondrously fresh and sparkly-smelling thanks to a bright, citrusy verbena top note. This opening is my favourite part of the scent and I wish it would stick around for longer. (I’ve always been a big sucker for citrus which is why I gravitate towards fragrances like Arden’s Green Tea and L’Occitane Citrus Verbena.)

That ribbon is tied onto each bottle by hand.

That ribbon is tied onto each bottle by hand.

Once that settles, you’re left with a soft, powdery rose and almond cherry blossom on a milky bed of rice. The effect is calming, comforting and very classy. It’s the kind of fragrance that isn’t going to leave a trail – people would have to hug you to smell it – and, while it’s intended for a younger woman, I see it working best on a very elegant woman with a youthful soul. I have no clue if that makes sense or not, but sniffing the new Chloe makes me think of eternally elegant women like Princess Diana.

To sum it up, the Rose Goldea woman is wearing diamonds and has an element of seduction going on thanks to the musk. She’s like Joan Smalls in a jumpsuit (classic but with a hint of sensuality). Repetto Eau Floral is Reese Witherspoon in a pretty sundress and Chloe Fleur de Parfum is a Cate Blanchett in an effortlessly chic white blazer.

If you like rose-focused scents, go sniff them all and let me know which is your favourite.

Love, love

Leigh