There has been countless coverage on the Hourglass makeups in the blogsphere world since the brand launched several years ago, and I just wasn’t that interested until the release of the Ambient Light Powder and Blush series this year, which have quickly become their top sellers. They are beautiful and unique enough for me to decide to branch out into this new brand for me, and having spotted the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette (which is always in the status of out-of-stock) on Net-A-Porter accidentally one day, I knew that this one ought to be mine! I have also picked up their Ambient Lighting Palette which will be covered in another review.

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The limited edition palette comes with two permanent blush colors that are from their individual blushes, and one color that is exclusive to this palette which also happens to be my favorite color out of the three. The texture of all three blushes are exquisite – they are extremely silky and buttery smooth to apply and blend. What attracts me in these blushes is that each blush color is blended with a different color of their signature ambient lighting powder, which warrants a multidimensional soft flush of color with an illuminating effect. This is pretty much a blush and highlighter two-in-one product, which makes this palette extremely practical and versatile to use.

Left: Luminous Flush (permanent) Middle: Incandescent Electra (exclusive to this palette only) Right: Mood Exposure (permanent)

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One interesting thing to note is that these blushes tend to show up differently depending on your skin tone, and even on my NC15 I find it very interesting that the swatch varies greatly from sheer to opaque finish (as you can see from the swatch below)

Color Description from left to right

- Luminous Flush (blended with Luminous Light) has a rosey pink undertone with a candlelit glimmer. When it is applied sheer it tones down to a soft coral pink, and it builds up to almost a plummy rosey pink on my skin as a heavy swatch. I prefer to wear it sheer as a blush.

- Incandescent Electra (blended with Incandescent Light) is described as a cool peach on the website, but on my skin the pink tone is definitely more prominent. In the sheer swatch it shows up as nude peachy pink with a subtle gleam that is more suitable as a highlighter blush, and builds up to a warm pink with a hint of frosty sheen if applied heavily. Definitely my favorite as either way it is a very pretty color to use!

- Mood Exposure (blended with Mood Light) is described as soft plum on the website, but again on my skin the beige undertone is much more prominent than plum. Apply it sheer it is a beautiful illuminating soft peachy beige color, and it builds up to a bronzy beige color with a hint of plum undertone that almost looks like a bronzer to me.

Sheer Swatch

Left: Luminous Flush Middle: Incandescent Electra Right: Mood Exposure

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Heavy Swatch – in the sun

hourglass-ambient-lighting-blush-palette-review-swatch-5Heavy Swatch – in the shade

hourglass-ambient-lighting-blush-palette-review-swatch-6Bottom Line: Love it! Striking, practical and travel friendly. It’s one of those palettes that will make you reach out for it on a very frequent basis! The Hourglass makeup line is available at Barneys in the US and Net-A-Porter worldwide.

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I tend to buy multiple products from the same range if I like one particular product, therefore I have both the YSL Youth Liberator Serum and the YSL Youth Liberator Serum Foundation. I don’t have access to 98% of my makeup at the moment as I am currently staying at my parents place, so the delay in reviewing them. On a side note, my mere 2% of beauty products is growing at a rapid pace due to the amount of packages being delivered to this new address lol!

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The YSL Youth Liberator Serum retails for US$155 in the US, and AUD$129 in Australia here. When it comes serum, I like to splurge – it’s the product that plays the utmost important role in terms of delivering  the optimum result. So to me this is a mid priced range serum that is targeting at a younger age group (20-30) who doesn’t have that many aging concerns, and just starting to incorporate mild anti aging products into their skincare regime.

This serum promises to stimulate regeneration, improves skin texture and luminosity as well as reducing the appearance of wrinkles. It has a runny oil-free lightweight elixir texture that is easily absorbed. I am almost half way through this product (I use it every morning and night), and my experience so far has been great. It hydrates, keeps your skin supple and improves absorption for other products. I have noticed it has improved the radiance and luminosity of my skin over time, as I rarely wake up with dull skin with the help of this product. It also helps the makeup to glide on effortlessly. The regeneration function of this serum is on the lower side which is what I expected to be at this price range. Unlike the regenerating serum that cost me an arm and a leg (such as this one and this one) that just transforms my skin over few days, I need to be patient with this serum to see a noticeable result for smoother texture and repairing of acne marks. Overall this is quite a good product for early anti-aging for all skin types.

 

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There is huge buzz on skincare foundation at the moment. Every high end brand has released a new foundation that contains their prestige skincare ingredients, such as the Shiseido Future Solution Radiance Foundation , or Estee Lauder Perfectionist Foundation,  and the list goes on! I for one who absolutely adore this idea – after all I have foundation on my face for at least 8 hours a day, and it’s always a bonus if it also doubles as a skincare product that protects and repairs my skin continuously.

The YSL Youth Liberator Foundation has very lightweight texture which almost feels like a gel lotion. It applies ultra smooth and silky, and melds into the skin upon application. It makes my skin appear more plumped, softer and provides a luminous satin finish that looks like your own radiance but better. The formula provides buildable sheer to medium coverage . The lasting power is about 5 to 6 hours on me,  so it’s not the greatest but I don’t mind as I actually get to use my compact foundation during the day! The formula is ideal for normal to dry skin types, but if you have combo to oily skin it tends to slip and won’t last too long.

Comparing the Liberator Foundation with the YSL Touche Eclat Foundation (reviewed here), I much prefer this as it works better on dry skin, provides easier application, and looks more  luminous in a natural way on the skin. It photographs particularly well as it gives a soft focus finish to the complexion. As a foundation that is packed with skincare ingredients, it has certainly made my complexion appear better in general (less dull, still moisturized) after having the makeup removed compared to just having a regular foundation on.

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Just a quick post letting all of the Tom Ford Australian fans know that the Tom Ford Beauty Summer 2014 Collection is finally out here! The Unabashed Eye and Cheek Palette has been sold out globally, and since Australia is the last country receiving the Tom Ford collection (welcome to the life of a beauty enthusiast who resides in Australia..), there are still limited numbers available here. I just got mine and words cannot express how gorgeous this palette is in real life. Love the glitter and the taupe eye shadows, and the blush is such a pretty color. Other products from the collection include a Skin Illuminator and two Lip Shimmers.

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I missed out on the beautiful Chanel Jardin de Camalias Illuminating Powder that was released earlier this year, so I made sure I was quick enough to snatch the Chanel CAMELIA DE PLUMES HIGHLIGHTING POWDER when the Holiday 2014 Collection was out in Australia. I thought I was quick but I was still told it was the last one at the Sydney counter at the time of purchase! Along with the highlighter, I also picked up the STYLO YUEX Eyeliner Or Blanc 987 which will also be covered in today’s review, with the other products reviewed here.

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The design of Chanel highlighters has always been the biggest selling point of this product to me. As a big fan of Chanel, I am always attracted to anything with the iconic interlock C or the Camelias. And compared to the other Chanel fashion items, their makeup is much more affordable but offers the almost same level of satisfaction!

The texture of the CAMELIA Highlighting Powder is buttery smooth and extremely finely milled. I was a little skeptical whether the color would suit my skin-tone, as it looked quite frosty and silvery from the pan.  Upon swatching and application on my face, I am glad that it works great with my skin-tone (NC15-20). Depending on the angle you are looking at it, the product actually has a champagne golden beige undertone with a hint of silver sheen. When it’s applied on my face it blends in to my skin with an illuminating sheen. The degree of shimmer is slightly more than the other Chanel Highlighters I have, and is on par with the  the conventional European brands such as the MAC Mineralize Skinfinish, Nars Highlighting Blush Albatross, or the Charlotte Tilbury Bronze and Glow.  If your skin color is more than NC30, it’s best for you to go and check this product out in person.

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The Stylo Yeux Eyeliner in OR BLANC 987 matches with the highlighting powder perfectly. It is almost the same color – looks silvery but applies ivory golden beige with shimmer. This color makes a great highlighter for the inner tear duct, or along the inner rims for a more eye opening effect. I love the Chanel Stylos Yeux in general and always tend to collect them in different colors – they are silky smooth to apply (never tugs the skin) and stays put for a whole day without smudging on me. Best of all, they are the perfect size for carrying them around in a makeup pouch – not too long and chubby.

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Comparison Swatch

Left Poudres Signee De Chanel Illuminating Powder Middle Camelia De Plumes Right Chanel Pearl Glow Powder

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There are so many great deals happening today which is the Vogue Online Shopping Night, Here are my picks for some bargain grabs from some local and international shops.

1. Paul and Joe Sister Sweater – currently 30% off and in addition there is a $25 gift card for every $100 purchase with code VogueAu14 (one day only).

2. Joe’s Jeans Slouched Slim Jeans – currently 30% off and in addition there is a $25 gift card for every $100 purchase with code VogueAu14 (one day only).

3. Tony Bianco espadrilles -(in leopard and black/white) – 25% off with code VOGQ one day only. These espadrilles are stylish, Chanelesque, good quality with leather upper and lining and affordable! I love them so much so I have them in both colors!

4. J Brand White Tee – Currently 40% off and in addition there is a $25 gift card for every $100 purchase with code VogueAu14. J Brand makes the best white Tee. I am debating if I need a backup of this since this style rarely goes on sale!

5. Rag and Bone Denim Shorts – Currently 60% off and in addition there is a $25 gift card for every $100 purchase with code VogueAu14 (one day only).

6. Alice D Leather Tote – Currently 30% off. Very well priced for a made in Italy all leather stylish tote.

7. Birkenstock - 25% off with code VOGQ one day only.

8. Jennifer Zeuner Evil Eye Necklace – 30% off with code VOGUELOVE from my favorite local fashion jewelry store. I’ve been eyeing this for a while.

9. Amber Sceats Bangle – 30% off with code VOGUELOVE. Bow and Knot bangles are the style to go for at the moment

10. Gorjana ring set 1 – Currently 20% off and in addition there is a $25 gift card for every $100 purchase with code VogueAu14.

11. Gorjana ring set 2 – Currently 20% off and in addition there is a $25 gift card for every $100 purchase with code VogueAu14.

 

 

 

 

 

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October Favorites

October 28, 2014

Whilst I am still in the process of putting together some more reviews for the other products I picked up from the Chanel Holiday 2014 collection, I thought I’ll quickly share some of my favorite products for the month of October before it ends. The monthly favorite posts are my all time favorite posts/videos to watch from other bloggers, and I don’t know why have I never done one?! So I am definitely going to incorporate this new series into my blogging schedule going forward.

1. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette – So glad I was able to get hold of this one from Net-A-Porter. I’ve been holding out on buying the individual blushes in the hope that they would release a palette one day, and my wish has been granted! It’s also available here in the US. Detailed review for this one as well as the highlighting palette is coming soon.

2. Chanel Camelia De Plumes Highlighting Powder – Every year Chanel releases an art piece of highlighter which is worthy of collection. This piece is stunning on its own, and also works great as a highlighter without looking frosty on me. Detailed review coming soon.

3. Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick Lost Cherry – Definitely one of my favorite purchases from Charlotte Tilbury (reviewed here). It’s longing lasting and can be worn for a polished look or sheer it out as a lip stain (the latter is my preferred method of wear).

4. Tiffany Key Necklace – Starting to wear and mix and match my jeweleries more now that my boy is bit older so he doesn’t pull them off me anymore :-)

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It is no secret that Chanel makes my heart flutter. I wasn’t planning to get that many items from the PLUMES PRECIEUSES De CHANEL Holiday 2014 Collection, but I succumbed when I saw them in real life. They are simply stunning and all look very flattering on my skin tone with the items I picked.  Today’s review is for the Chanel Joues Contraste Blush CARESSE 180 and the Illusion D’Ombre Eyeshadow Envol 847.

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I won’t go into the details of the texture of Joues Contraste Blush as they have been reviewed many times on my blog. In short they are ‘baked’ to perfection – very smooth, finely milled and easy to apply.  CARESSE looked like a plain pale peach with micro silver shimmer from the pan, but once I tried it on my face I just couldn’t let it go. It shows up as a soft wash of coral peach with a hint of rose-gold undertone with the signature Chanel soft glow that gives a youthful, glowy and plumped effect.  This color made me appear a lot more revived as soon as I had it on my face after a long day of work, and I knew I had to bring it home and it will be the workhorse blush as part my everyday makeup items. It has medium opacity and it can be applied sheer or layered for more color.

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The Illusion D’Ombre Eyeshadow in Envol is another must buy item from this collection for the neutral makeup lovers. The color is very similar to the CARESSE blush, but more translucent and shimmery with a stronger undertone of rose gold. It provides a soft and shimmery wash of color which serves as a good wash for the eyelid, as well as for highlighting purpose. The color, wearability and its versatility makes this a worthy purchase.  I have mentioned that I adore the formulation of the Illusion D’Ombre cream eyeshadow –   the cushiony soft texture makes it easy to apply and blend, and the shimmery finish is neither metallic nor frosty. The longevity is also outstanding. I have had cream eye shadows from other brands which were purchased around the same time as my first few Chanel Illusion D’ombre,  and they have all dried up since then, except for the Chanel ones which are still performing as good as they were new.

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Left: Caresse Sheer Swatch, Middle Caresse Heavy Swatch, Right Envol

chanel-joues-constraste-blush-caresse-180-illusion-d'ombre-eyeshadow-envol-847-review-swatchCloser look

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I have been meaning to write a baby skincare post for a while. Being a new mum and a beauty enthusiast, I am very cautious with what I put on my baby’s skin! So when it comes to everyday baby products , I have tried tons of brands and one of my favorite baby brands in general is by MILK and CO. It’s affordable and it’s an Australian company (founded by the swimmer Michael Klim) with all of their products made in Australia with natural and green ingredients only (paraben free)!

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I was drawn to this brand first because of their clean packaging and the brand name MILK – they just seem very pure and organic to me. My favorite product is the MILK baby shampoo and conditioner. It’s softly scented and smells delicious – like a creamy smoothie with a hint of lavender done in a very soothing (not empowering) way. Even my hubby is addicted to the smell, and we just can’t stop sniffing our baby’s hair after washing every time. It’s a shampoo and conditioner in one, so it’s really great for babies who have lots of hair and prone to tangle. I absolutely love this one and have gone through several bottles of this because it’s not expensive but feels and  performs way beyond other supermarket brands.

Australia sun is so harsh so I’ve already started using sunscreen on my baby if we go out during the day. It was a struggle for me to find a baby sunscreen that doesn’t smell like a typical sunscreen and not greasy. The MILK Protect Me Sunscreen is still the best I have used so far compared to the others  (though it’s still not perfect..). It’s suitable for babies 3 months + with SPF30+ protection, and contains no nasty chemicals.  It has a cream texture that is easy to spread and stays put for several hours as well as very water resistant. The trade off was that it is slightly greasy for my liking but as babies naturally have dry skin, maybe this was part of their formulation. It doesn’t leave a white cast on the skin and has a soft milky vanilla scent. Overall I quite like this gentle sunscreen especially made for a baby’s fragile and sensitive skin.

Last but not least, The MILK Body Oil is really fantastic. Designed to improve the appearance of scars, stretch marks, and uneven skin. As most MILK products are, this product is lightly scented with essential oils of lavender which smells very calming and soothing.  I apply this on my slightly damp skin after shower, and this light oil absorbs into my skin within seconds without leaving a greasy film. It makes my skin so soft and moisturized for days! I can get away without apply body moisturizer for the next two days. I also love using it on my baby as a  massaging oil as well as a moisturizer. I am absolutely impressed by this product and it will definitely be a bathroom staple for me. Highly recommend this one to anyone who is after a quick and fuss-free body moisturizer application, and also great for preventing stretch marks for the mums-to-be!

I normally stock these products from my local supermarket (the baby section), or they can be found here online and they are currently running a promotion to support the McGrath Foundation.

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