Friday, 29 May 2015

Astor Lipcolor Butter Matte in Elegant Nude

Astor is one drugstore brand I have yet to explore. So far, I have only tried 2 of their nail polishes and 2 of their famous lip butters. My experience with the brand has been pleasant, so when I read that they were launching new matte lip butters, I was sold. 

Astor came up with 4 shades of matte lipsticks that are supposed to be creamy and moisturizing despite of the matte finish. Fellow german beauty bloggers have been raving about them and they were sold out everywhere upon its first launch. I had to wait about a month after its launching to finally be able to find one particular shade I wanted the most ; Elegant Nude.

Elegant Nude is a brownish terracota shade. On some people it looks like a neutral dusty rose, on me it appears a bit brownish-reddish rose which is great for daily wear and suits almost every occasions. Astor Lipcolor Butter Matte has a nice creamy texture. The texture is similar to the Rimmel Kate Moss matte lipsticks , only slightly creamier and buttery. The finish is a good matte, not as matte or dry as MAC matte lipsticks, but it doesn't have any shine to it, only just very slightly sheen maybe due to the creamy texture.

The lip butter matte is housed in chubby stick kind of packaging. The stick is retractable so you don't need any sharpies for it. The packaging might not be the prettiest but it is very functional and storage friendly due to its slim and small stick.

The lip butter matte applies effortlessly and smooth. It doesn't tug nor accentuate my lip lines as other matte lipsticks tend to do. The staying power is good too and it fades gradually and evenly.

Overall, the new lip butter matte from Astor is a gem in the drugstore. For ca.€6 each, it is definitely a good alternative for matte lipsticks compare to the higher end brands. I just hope Astor will bring more shades to the range .

What is your current fave matte lipstick?

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

THREE Cosmetics Japan Ultimate Protective Pristine Primer + Flawless Ethereal Fluid Foundation

THREE is a high end Japanese brand I had my eyes on for quiet some time. So when I found out that the brand is now available in Jakarta ( I am currently doing my internship here until August ) , I literally made an excuse to go to the shopping mall where THREE counter is located xD.
Good thing is, they were having a promo for the Primer + Foundation duo for only IDR 790.000 ( ca. US$ 60 ) instead of its regular price for IDR 1.190.000 ( ca. US$ 90 ). That kind of promo is not something you should say no to, am I right?

ps : be prepare to see a long post!

The Protective Pristine Primer comes in 2 variants ; translucent and glow. According to the BA, the translucent is good to create a soft blur-flawless base and hides pores ( similar to the effect you get from Benefit Porefessional or Smashbox PhotoReady Primer ) and glow is good to create luster - moisturized base and clear looking skin. Since I have both Porefessional and Smashbox PhotoReady Primer, I decided to go with the glow one, and based on my hand swatch, the glow one felt nicer. 
According to the THREE website, the primer is made of 80% naturally-derived ingredients and free from UV absorbing chemical, parabens, synthetic perfumes, animal-derived ingredients, and mineral oils. It also contains 8 botanical oils such as Incha Inchi oil ( only God knows what it is , lol ) , tea seed oil, argan oil, jojoba oil, evening primrose oil, rosehip oil, shea butter, and bees wax. Looking at those ingredients, I can't help to feel very optimistic about the product and I am glad that it doesn't disappoint. 
The Pristine Primer Glow has a runny-liquid texture. It is very lightweight and hence perfect for a base as it won't make your skin feels thick or too much. The primer spreads effortlessly and I like it best to apply it using my fingers, just like how I'd apply my daily moisturizer. It gives a slight hint of coverage and even though it won't be sufficient to work on its own without the help of foundation, it does correct the skin tone and prep the skin to be a better canvas for the foundation. It def helps enlighten the job of foundation and concealer. 
Speaking whether it prolongs the wear of foundation, I must say it does but only when it is paired with the THREE Flawless Ethereal Fluid Foundation. I noticed the foundation does look nice longer with this primer and the foundation also applies better over the primer. Together they work like a dream team, but when I tried this primer with other foundation ( GA Luminous Silk and MAC Studio fix Plus ) , it didn't really prolong the wear of both foundations and but it still worked well as a base. I also like the beige-yellowish undertone which helps reduce the appearance of redness around my cheek areas. Oh and the primer has SPF 32+++ PA which is great but means you can't really wear it for flash photography.

The Flawless Ethereal Fluid Foundation comes in 7 shades and I was shade matched to #102 and #202. I had a hard time choosing between the two shades but decided to go with #202 because #102 was a tad too yellow and too dark for my complexion. The shade range is not really wide though and most of them are quite light toned. I believe I didn't see any shade suitable for skin tone darker than MAC NC 30-35 ish. 
The Flawless Ethereal Fluid Foundation has a thin runny texture similar to the primer, only slightly creamier. The foundation feels very very lightweight and goes on very smooth and melts seamlessly into the skin. Despite of the thin and lightweight texture, it provides a good coverage. It starts sheer but you can really build the coverage to solid medium without it being cakey. The finish is very natural and radiant. It has a very subtle luster glow which is the kind of finish I like the most for foundation. The luster finish doesn't get muted even when it is set with powder. It just shines through, I am completely sold!
Similar to the primer, the foundation is also enriched with 8 botanical oils and free from bad chemical. The foundation is supposed to have skin care benefit and I must say this is the first so called foundation which I really notice the benefit! My skin feels very moisturized wearing it and it just looks healthier. My skin afterwards feels supple and nice and free from any rash. I haven't worn it long enough to notice long term effect, but after trying it for ca.2 weeks I can say that my skin is less cranky. 
The foundation has SPF 36 PA +++ which is together with the SPF 32 PA+++ from the primer will provide good sun protection for the skin ( I guess? ), but I still apply sun screen beforehand just to be sure. The packaging is great - clean cut, simple and sleek yet very well made. Both foundation and primer are housed in a frosted glass bottle with pump spender. The bottle is identical, so I can only differentiate them by reading the description on the back of the bottle. 

Overall, after wearing both products every single day the past 3 weeks, I can say that I am very happy with the performance given and is completely smitten with the brand. I will definitely try another products ( the loose powder,  the corrector stick, the blushes and the lipsticks are on the radar! ). The brand THREE itself has a good image to it and the pricing is still reasonable for a higher end brand. 

Have you ever heard of the brand? Is there anything you want to try from it?

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Etude House Moistfull Super Collagen Cream

I always want to try Korean skin care products as they are known as one of the leader in skin care/beauty industry. During my flight to Indonesia, I had 2 hour transfer time at Changi Airport and was surprised to see all the brands they have at the duty free ( they even have Fresh beauty! ). They also offer a good selection of Korean brands such as Etude House, Innisfree, The Face Shop, etc with relatively affordable prices. This Moistfull Super Collagen cream was on their best seller rack, and cost only S$15 ( if I'm not mistaken ) for 60 ml so I purchased it to replace my emptied Laneige Waterbank Lotion.

I am no expert in terms of beauty /skin care ingredients, but I do know that Collagen supposed to be good for the skin and provides a nice--hydrated-suppled-ellastic skin. Etude House Moistfull Super Collagen Cream contains 63% collagen which sounds rather promising.

The cream is housed in a big round plastic jar and comes with a small spatula. I like the fact that they include a spatula because it means I don't need to dip my fingers into the pot and therefore keeps the product stays hygienic ( assuming you always clean the spatula beforehand ). The spatula also helps scooping out the product due to its unique consistency.

The product has a gel-ish creamy texture which spreads easily and melts into the skin right after application. The texture is rich but still relatively lightweight, though I usually wear it for my night routine instead of day routine. It is a bit too rich for day use on my combination skin. In terms of hydrating and moisturizing the skin, it does the job really well. My skin is well hydrated and feels rejuvenated the next morning. I sleep in an air conditioned room and this cream manages to keep my skin from being dry. I also notice that my skin appears softer and less bumpy/itchy. 

I have used this cream religiously every night for the past month and I must say I like it. It is not groundbreaking or extraordinary but it does the moisturizing job very well and for the price, I just can't complain much. Will I repurchase? I don't think so. Even though it is by no mean a bad product, it is just not groundbreaking enough for me. I believe there are other moisturizers out there which can perform just as good or even better and I always like to try on different skin care and the jar is huge it will last me a long time. 

Have you tried Korean skin care before?

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Tony Moly Kiss Lover Lip Tint

I am in general not really a fan of lip tint as they all tend to be drying and make my lips peeled. I like the look you get from wearing lip tints though, only I haven't found lip tint that is not drying.
The lovely Jing-Jing from Shizurawr  sent me a package filled with stuffs just recently and this lip tint is included. 

Look at that cute lips sticker!! *_*

The lip tint is from one of my favorite Korean brand ; Tony Moly. The lip tint comes in a simple small plastic tube with doe foot applicator. All the descriptions on the packaging is in korean so I don't understand a word xD. 
Jing Jing got me a red shade with slightly orange undertone. The lip tint applies sheer on the lips and leans more to pink instead of red. Similar to other lip tints, this one also stains the lips but only very subtly. 

Tony moly Kiss Lover Lip Tint has very thin-liquid consistency. It feels like water on the lips and is wet upon application. It dries up to a sticky consistency but not drying. Upon application, it has slightly glossy finish which fades very quickly , but then it is relatively hydrating for lip tint. 
The lip tint has sweet watermelon scent which I like and the scent doesn't linger on so don't worry if you have sensitive nose. 

The staying power is good for a lip tint as it stains the lips after it fades. If you like the look of stained lips or Korean gradient lips,this one is one alternative to try.

What is your favorite lip tint ever?

Thursday, 14 May 2015

What's in My 3 Month Travel Make Up Bag

Hi guys! As I've mentioned before in several posts, I am currently in Jakarta-Indonesia for my  3 month obligatory internship. It was not easy for me to pack my make up for this 3 month trip as I promised myself not to buy too much make up while I am in Jakarta, so I needed to make sure that I carry everything I need. Here is what's inside my travel make up bag :

Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence Sun Screen - This sunscreen is my HG sun screen and a must esp for hot climate Indonesia.

Lunasol Smoothing Make Up Base - For the hot climate, I need a strong hold make up primer and this one is heat and sweat proof.

Canmake BB Cream - I bought this BB Cream in February and it's been my staple ever since. I am writing a review about it and will post it soon. 

Laneige BB Snow Cushion Foundation - My HG cushion foundation, I just can't leave this one. It is great working as a base between primer and foundation. I like to apply a sheer layer of it after primer then cover it up with foundation. It is lightweight and provides an even more flawless base.

Anna Sui Liquid Foundation - I prefer to take asian brand base make up as they tend to be more water proof, heat proof and sweat proof. I bought this foundation on my trip to Asia last year and it performed really well on hot weather.

MAC Studiofix Fluid Foundation : A long wearing and full coverage will come in handy especially since I knew I was going to attend 3 weddings during my stay in Indonesia. 

Itcosmetics CC Cream : I actually bought this one in Jakarta just recently, I just mistakenly put it in the picture. I haven't tested it long enough to write a review about it.

Maybelline The Roller Concealer : One of my favorite concealer ever. It is great for under eye area and spot concealing. The staying power is good and the shade matches my skin very well. It can double up as foundation too when used sparingly. 

ZA Perfect Fit Concealer : My HG concealer. I mix up shade 1 and 2 to achieve the perfect shade for my under eye area. It brightens up the area and shade 1 can double up as a highlighter shade as well.

Charlotte Tilbury The Retoucher : I love using this as a touch up wand if my foundation starts to fade. The formula is lightweight and brightening so it's great to freshen up the look.

Coastal Scent Camouflage Contour Cream Quad : I bought this quad on a whim without much expectation and it works surprisingly well. It needs to be blended using sponge though as the consistency is a bit too cakey for any brushes.

W7 Cream Bronzer : I got it shortly before my departure to Indonesia because it's recommended as a good dupe for Soleil Tan de Chanel. For a fraction of the price compare to the Chanel one, this is not bad at all. The color is a tad too warm though so I need to be careful on application to avoid it being too orange.

Lorac Wet/Dry Pressed Powder : I wouldn't use this powder as a setting powder if I were not in Indonesia. But due to the hot hot climate, I need to put extra protection to my make up and therefore this powder comes to the rescue. It might look a bit too much upon application, but after 3-4 hour I am just glad I put extra protection because I always sweat like crazy here.

Soap & Glory One Heck of a Blot Powder : My touch up powder. The lightweight texture and the mattifying effect is great for touch up. It doesn't cake up even after multiple touch ups.

Stila Sun Bronzing Powder : I hit the pan on this one already. The bronzer is so easy to wear and despite of the warm shade, it is still foolproof. I like to apply it over foundation to warm up the complexion. It is so natural that's why I love it.

Burberry Blush in Earthy : Another favorite bronzer. Earthy is less warm and more ashy so it can double up as subtle contour shade. 

Burberry Blush in Blossom : Blossom is my touch up blush that is always in my make up pouch to go. The mini brush and built in mirror is very convenient for touch up.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette : This palette is very travel friendly as you get 2 different shades inside one relatively compact palette. I was tempted to bring the Benefit blush palette but couldn't be bother to carry it as the tin box is so big xD.

Stila Convertible Color in Lilium : I just thought I might need a cream blush, you know just in case. xD

The Balm Maryloumanizer : My face is already shiny enough on its own but I still packed this one in for any night out occasions. 

Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Pomade : I don't go outside house without filling my brows in with this brow pomade

Maybelline Brow Mascara : The only brow mascara I own, but it does its job. Great alternative for more expensive similar products.

Etude House Eye Brow Pencil : I carry this pencil in my go to make up pouch just in case I need to touch up my eye brow which is rarely happen because the dip brow pomade stays on like nobody's business.

Dolly Wink Liquid Pen Eyeliner : It took me awhile to appreciate this much loved and hyped liquid pen eyeliner. I was not sold at the beginning but it started to grow on me now. It goes on smoothly and doesn't smudge.

Too Faced Shadow Insurance : I very often skip the eye shadow primer step, mainly because I always forget and often too lazy. I don't have any favorite in this category so I randomly selected this one.

Kiko Eye Shadow Stick in 04 and 05 : They are my favorite eye shadow sticks. They are creamy, pigmented, and long-lasting. They are very easy to apply and low maintenance too.

Rimmel Scandalous Eye shadow stick in Bad Girl Bronze and Rose Gold : Another staples in the eye shadow stick category.

Shiseido Cream Eyeshadow in Leather - Lancome Dazzling Hypnose Cream Eyeshadow in Rouge Cabaret - and L'oreal Infallible Eye shadow in Burnt Amber : My most used cream eye shadows.

Itcosmetics Naturally Pretty Eyeshadow Palette :  A great matte eye shadow palette is a must for traveling.

Lorac Pro Palette : I was debating between this palette and the Shu one. But this one won because it is thinner, more compact and lighter to carry. The shade Garnet was a huge X factor too.

Tarte Big Lashes Mascara and Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara : Since I am always wearing false lashes, I don't really care what kind of mascara I wear as long as they are waterproof, they're in.

The lip products :
  • Revlon Matte Lip Balm in Sultry
  • Astor Lip Butter Matte in Elegant Nude
  • Evete Lip Balm in Vanilla
  • Bourjois Lip Velvet in Nude-Ist
  • Rouge Bunny Rouge Lipstick in Whim of Mine
  • Burberry Lip Cover in Blush
  • Rimmel Kate Moss Matte Lipstick in 107
  • Lancome Lip Lover #333
Beauty Blender ( not in picture ) and my essential make up brushes 

I tried my best to limit my 3 month make up carry on since I knew I would be able to use my sister's and my mom's make up stash xD ( plus I knew I'd shop some new make up hehe ).
What make up essentials would you carry for a longer term trip? 


Sunday, 10 May 2015

Givenchy Teint Couture Long Wearing Fluid Foundation

I got this foundation from Paris duty free on my recent trip to Asia. The duty free had 20% off all foundation so as a foundation junkie of course I took the chance and got this foundation.
I didn't have a lot of time during that visit so I took this foundation based on the BA recommendation ( she said this foundation is the best seller from Givenchy ). 

Givenchy Teint Couture Foundation lists alcohol as one of its main ingredients which I unfortunately was not aware by the time I bought it. My skin is not particularly allergic to alcohol, but it tends to get very dry esp on the cheek areas and alcohol won't make it any better. Alcohol could also lead to skin irritation that is of course not appealing at all.

Apart from the alcohol problem, the foundation claims to deliver a finish that looks like a second skin with a lightweight and and build able formula. The consistency is indeed lightweight, it has thin runny texture that applies seamlessly, it dries up to semi matte-satin finish and due to its consistency, I prefer to use stippling/buffing brush to apply it. It also has a powdery touch, so I don't set it with powder to avoid it looking too dull. You also need to well prep your skin beforehand with good moisturizer otherwise it will cling on to your dry patches.

Givenchy Teint Couture Foundation provides a solid coverage, it covers up my redness, blemishes and imperfections. I can go without concealer when wearing this foundation. As you can see from the pictures above, the finish does seem radiant and flawless. But I must say that it is not very build able because layering more than 1 layer will make it looking cakey. Unfortunately, after ca.3 hour wear the foundation starts to migrate around the nose area and esp around my Tzone. The oil control is bad as hell as my skin starts to look so greasy and very unappealing after ca.3 hour. For the price point at €46,88 ( I got it for 20% off though ), it is just absurd. I've tried to apply primer beforehand to prolong the wear time but it didn't help much, maybe 1-2 hour extra but still very disappointing. 
The other disappointing fact is that the alcohol inside it causes my skin to break out :/ 

Packaging wise, the foundation is housed inside a luxury glass bottle packaging that comes with a pump dispenser. The packaging is top notch and sadly the only thing I am completely happy from the whole product. 

PS : A friend of mine has just launched his youtube channel consists mainly of DIY videos :D. It's in German but he always puts english subtitle. He's passionate with what he's doing so a visit to his channel will make his day :) HERE

Have you tried anything from the Givenchy beauty line?

Friday, 8 May 2015

Matte vs Shimmery

I did a short trip to KIKO and went home with few items including these 2 new eye shadows.

Kiko Cool Touch Eye Shadow in #04 Modern Burgundy is a water based pressed pigment eye shadow. It comes with a special form of case with a transparent lid that keeps the eye shadow well pressed. I personally like the concept of packaging though the case is bulky and thus might not be the most storage efficient. The eye shadow has spongy-wet texture ( imagine L'oreal Infallible Eye shadow or GA Eyes to Kill texture soaked in water ), the formula is something I've never experienced before. The eyeshadow feels creamy to touch and apply smoothly. The pigmentation is great but I must say it takes a bit effort to blend. The shade I picked up , Modern Burgundy is a purplish burgundy shade with metallic finish though to be honest, I can't really see the metallic finish on the lids ( it looks very metallic on the pan though ) . It is more satin-sheen finish in my opinion. It doesn't crease on the lids and stays on pretty well.

Kiko Cream Crush Lasting Color Eye shadow in #03 Matt Light Mahogany is a matte cream eye shadow. It comes in a glass pot packaging which sadly is not optimal in my opinion as the hole is too narrow so it is so difficult to pick up the product using my fingers which results in the cream eye shadow get stuck on my nails ( I end up using small spatula to pick up the cream eye shadow then ) . The cream eye shadow has very very soft mousse -y texture with great pigmentation, so a little goes a long way. It is not easy though to apply the right amount of product as I always get it too much and then end up with the eye shadow smearing all over the lids. I usually scrap the product using a small spatula and put it on the back of my hands then using my fingers to apply it on the lids then blend it using blending brush. The cream eye shadow dries up to powdery finish so it will work well as a base. The shade #03 Matt Light Mahogany is a matte mauve-y brown shade. Kiko claims it to last 10 hour and it does live up to the claim.

Please pardon my almost worn off false lashes

Overall, I think both eye shadows are good solid products from Kiko, though the Cream crush eye shadow is a tad too 'mousse-y' and smeary. But, I really like the shade so I still use it often though the application is not the easiest.

Have you tried any eye shadow from Kiko?

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

YSL Rouge Volupte

This is my first lipstick from YSL Rouge Volupte line. I received it from a friend of mine as my birthday present. I haven't tried anything from the Rouge Volupte range so I was excited to try.

The lipstick comes in a iconic YSL gold bullet. I personally like the packaging even though it catches fingerprints like crazy, but it is well made and has a good weigh into it. 
I received the shade #15 - extreme coral , I find the name a bit misleading though because the shade is an absolute orange bordering tomato red ( at least to my eyes ) and it has almost neon-shiny/glossy finish  ( the picture doesn't do enough justice ) . It is very similar to Tom Ford Wild Ginger only with less shine. The shiny/glossy finish fades quickly though maybe after ca. 1-2 hour but it doesn't transform into matte just no longer glossy, I'd say more like lip stain.

YSL Rouge Volupte in Extreme Coral is a full coverage lipstick with creamy consistency. It applies smoothly and the texture is emollient. I find this kind of texture is always good for 'more forgiving' nude or MLBB shades, but is a tricky one for bolder and brighter shades. It doesn't bleed or feather, but it could be slippery.  The lipstick feely hydrated and doesn't dry up my lips despite of the good staying power and the bold pigmentation. It feels very comfortable on the lips and the texture is just pleasant. It has floral scent which is quite potent but I don't mind because it doesn't linger. 

This lipstick retails for €28 - €32,99 and it is a hefty price tag for a lipstick. But YSL is indeed high end so I think the pricing is okay since the quality is not disappointing either. 

Do you have anything from the Rouge Volupte range?

Saturday, 2 May 2015


I have some nail polishes from KIKO but I am not all over them. They are nice especially for the price ( ca. €1,90-€2,40 ) yet they are not excellent. But, this new perfect gel duo nail lacquer + top coat from KIKO is another story.

The duo consists of one gel top coat and one nail polish. They have 18 shades and supposed to be limited ( which is a shame as I really like them ). 
I picked up the color Cyclamen which is a bright magenta-fuchsia. It was a tough decision as I  initially wanted to pick up another taupe / grey and red shades  , but I remained strong and picked up only 1 shade I had not had in my collection xD. 
Both nail polish and topcoat come in a different packaging as the regular KIKO nail polishes. The packaging looks better imo as well as 'more expensive'. The brush is wide and flat ( similar to Essie and Dior brushes ) and makes application smoother and easier. The nail polish has excellent consistency, not too thin nor too thick. The pigmentation is great and it reaches opacity in 1 coat, but I always apply 2 coats anyway. It has glossy creamy finish which is the kind of finish I always go to for manicure as I am not a fan of matte finish.

Kiko claims the duo to be long lasting and yes it is indeed long lasting ( 7 days wear with minor chipping ). I find the gel top coat works well with other polishes too. It dries on very quick and gives a nice gel like glossy finish to other nail polishes. I hope Kiko will bring the top coat to the permanent range.

PS : I landed in Jakarta on Friday, and have been experiencing a bad bad bad jet lag :/ it is 05.00 in the morning and I am wide awake O_O and hungry. LOL.

What has been on your nails lately?