Micellaneous Beauty Photos: Budget Shower Gel, Mascara Stash, Weak Nail Solutions…

Hey everyone!

I hope you’ve had a good Monday so far! Today I’m showing you some miscellaneous beauty-related pictures, so sit back and enjoy!

Le Petit Marseillais is hands down my favorite supermarket shower gel. It comes with a wide range of scents, never dries my skin out or leaves it slippery, and did I mention it’s paraben-free?

I do occasionally get tempted to splurge on an expensive shower gel, but most of the time I prefer to keep it budget-friendly. As long as it smells pleasant, doesn’t dry my skin out (and doesn’t leave it slippery either. That I can’t stand), and is preferably as natural as possible, we’re on. Le Petit Marseillais totally fits the bill. Oh and the funny thing? Dr. D likes it too, but he prefers green bottles just because he thinks they look more masculine. Boys…

Here is to hoping against hope.

As some of you might remember, I’ve been suffering from weak and peeling nails for quite some months now. Normally a 3-month-course of vitamin supplement helps, but this time it didn’t work. I was on the supplement from another brand, but now I am continuing with Oenobiol. Packed with B vitamins, it should strengthen nails and hair. I have to take two a day during a meal.

I ran out of base coat recently too, and I got Essie Grow Stronger Fortifying Treatment Base Coat. It claims to strengthen nails in 5 days. It might be the combination of continuous vitamin supplement and a strengthening base coat, but my nails are not peeling further. I’m waiting for the broken parts to grow out, but I think after months and months I’ll finally have decent nails again.

Essie Grow Stronger looks a tad pink in the bottle, but on the nails it’s MOSTLY clear. It might be a bit tinted, but it doesn’t change the color of the nails all that much. I try to keep this on even when I’m not wearing nail polish nowadays, just to have something to protect my nails a little. Here you can see a swatch picture of this.

I will review these two items in detail, but it might be a while. For the base coat, I want to wait till the peeling parts are gone to test and compare it with other base coats I have tried before. For the Oenobiol supplement, I want to at least wait till I’m done (I still have about 66 days left). Maybe even longer, if I want to see how long the effects last!

My name is Sunny and I am a mascaraholic. From left to right: Cover Girl Lash Blast Volume, MAC Zoom Waterfast Lash, L’Oreal Million Lashes, Max Factor False Lash Effect, and Chanel Intimitable.

Behold part of the mascara I still have to try out. It’s not ALL (there is one that has already been tested but not yet reviewed. Two are stuck at clearance, and I don’t know when they’re going to release the package. On top of that I might or might not have got a gift with purchase coming my way…)! I used to be very sober. I would find a mascara to stick to for three months (I actually have to throw it away after three months. Otherwise my eyes start itching), and if I got any samples in the meantime I might play with it too. Nothing THIS dramatic.

Before I knew it however, a trip to the supermarket, a cross-Atlantic swap, an online order or two later, this is what I ended up with. These will be tested out and reviewed in time. Do you have a preference for what you want to see first? I might be able to accommodate!

Oh, before I forget: for those of you who have tried Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara, it is coming out today (14th of May) in this special pink edition exclusively at Kruidvat for 9,99 euros! The offer lasts till the 26th of May. I am currently testing it out, and I must say I am really impressed! I will review it as soon as I can, hopefully by the end of this week so you’ll still have time to decide whether you want to grab a tube!

For those who are going on holiday, Rituals has launched some travel-size products to help you travel light! Besides the mini deodorant (2,90 euros), these retail for 4,90 euros a piece. I’m saying it will definitely last you quite a while as well! The shampoo and conditioner smell SO good. In fact, every time I take them out they become the ONLY thing I can smell! The body products are less overpowering, but still they smell gorgeous (like lotus)!

I basically have everything it takes to go on holiday, but so far I don’t have anything booked yet!

What is your favorite budget-friendly shower gel? Do you have a mascara stash that’s getting out of hand? Which mascara would you like to see me review next?

Sunny, your beauty culture translator xx

Disclosure: Some of the products mentioned in this review are sent by the PR for my consideration. All opinions are honest and my own. I am in no way compensated for this review. I have always been, and will always be committed ONLY to my readers.

Bonus kitty photo:

Muffin waiting patiently by her daddy’s dining chair. Can kitty have a piece?

She does get a taste from time to time, and so far she’s very polite (when she loses patience she only puts her front paws on his lap. Nothing further). It’s hard to resist when she looks at you with such bright eyes!

How Could I Not Have Fallen for These Baby Diors? Diorshow New Look Mascara & Dior Vernis 943 Rouge Garçonne

Never say never, people. Never say never, because before you know it, it will backfire and your new self will be slapping the old one on the face!

Just a couple of weeks ago, I answered a question on a blog: what would you not purchase high-end? My answer was mascara. It’s something that you are supposed to throw away after three months, plus I had never been amazed by a non-drugstore mascara, so what was the point?

And then I received a baby tube of Diorshow New Look Mascara as a gift with purchase. I was skeptical, but since it was in my hands why not give it a try?

I did.

It was LOVE.

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MAC Hey, Sailor! Avant-première ENTIRE COLLECTION Swatches & Demonstration!

Hey everybody!

Tonight I was invited to the opening of the first temporary MAC store of Benelux in Brussels, and I got to see Hey, Sailor! which is coming out in Belgium tomorrow (5th of May) and apparently on the 24th in the US. This is the FIRST TIME EVER in my memory that Belgium is getting a collection before the US, and I really can’t wait to share with you all the swatches and the demonstration by the mega talented and VERY nice senior artist Elke!

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Swatch & Review: Could Fairy Drops Platinum Mascara Be Your New HG?

You know how sometimes you get super excited about getting something new, but if you don’t use it immediately, it kind of lies forgotten in some dark corner of your makeup drawer? Well, this is what happened to my Fairy Drops Platinum Mascara. I got it in a swap about a year ago, but it’s been lying in my drawer till I finally decided to try it out a couple of weeks ago.

Fairy Drops Platinum mascara makes grand promises. It claims to give volume, length, glossy finish, and also functions as a treatment. It is not waterproof, but it is water resistant, and it is supposed to be removed with warm water.

The most interesting thing about this mascara is its brush. That’s where it got the name Fairy Drops from (drops as in tear drops I suppose). It looks like three balls glued together, and it is curvy.

The first couple of times I tried this mascara I was not really impressed. It does lengthen very well, but it doesn’t separate as superbly. As a result, my lashes were kind of glued together. However, after that couple of failed trials, I figured something out: you are not supposed to zigzag like crazy with this mascara the way you usually do. You can zigzag a little from the roots, but when you reach the end of your lashes, it is better to tease them apart with the tip of the brush. That way, your lashes will be lengthened and properly separated.

In this picture you can see my bare eye, my upper lashes with one coat of Fairy Drops Platinum mascara, and my upper lashes with two coats and bottom ones with one coat. Pretty impressive, no (you can click on the picture to enlarge it)?

What I LOVE about this mascara:

+ it lengthens very well.

+ it holds curls all day. I had forgotten to use my eyelash curler once, but even in that case this mascara manages to push my eyelashes up!

+ it can be easily removed with my Bioderma Sensibio. I have tried warm water as the packaging suggests, but I’m not a big fan of splashing water on my eyes repetitively, and it doesn’t happen fast enough!

+ my lashes stay feathery soft, instead of crunchy or stiff.

+it does not flake or smudge, and despite the fact that it is not waterproof, I have not experienced problems with wear.

What I don’t like so much about this mascara:

– contrary to its promises, it doesn’t volumize much.

– separating lashes could be tricky if you zigzag too much.

Bottom line: I wouldn’t claim this mascara is perfect, but there are things about it that I like more than my current HG (Maybelline fatty tubes). If you have short, straight, and stubborn lashes, I would recommend you give it a try!

Have you tried any of the Fairy Drops mascara? Do you like them? What is your current holy grail mascara?

Sunny, your beauty culture translator xx

Review: Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes. You and I Are Never Meant to Be…

What would be a perfect mascara for you? Since I have very sparse, short, and straight natural lashes, I need all the help I can get! When I heard Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes claim to be lengthening, curling, volumizing, and even conditioning, I thought it would be a very promising one to try!

The Tarte website claims the result this mascara promises is “clinically-proven.” “This is what we call a push-up bra for your lashes™ a 4-in-1 (lengthening, curling, volumizing and conditioning) dermatologist tested mascara that gives dramatic, thick, sexy lashes and is clinically proven to increase lash volume by 424%.”

Isn’t that just amazing? I was SO excited when I received a brand new sample in a swap, and immediately put it to test.

I love the deep purple packaging, and the full-size packaging is even more glamorous. The brush, as you will be able to see in the close-up photo, is pretty regular. It is a bit on the “fat” side, but not curvy or spooly. I am totally fine with that though. Now let’s see some ACTION!

I’m sorry to report, my dear readers, that this mascara is not what it makes out to be.

Pros:

1. It gives decent length.
2. It doesn’t smudge or flake, despite the fact that it is not marketed to be waterproof (however, do note I am testing this in minus god knows how many degrees weather. I don’t know yet what might happen when it gets warmer).
3. It separates my lashes very well, with minimum clumping. Also, my upper and lower lashes don’t stick to each other when I blink, which happens sometimes with waterproof mascaras.
4. It is very easy to remove, perhaps because the formula isn’t waterproof.

Cons:

1. Sadly enough, the 424% of lash volume increase stays a marketing claim. I have definitely had better results with other mascaras.
2. The major turn-off, however, is the fact that it does NOT hold curls in my case. The link to the photo I am going to show you was taken right after application, and the curls were decent. However, after several hours, my lashes gradually succumbed to gravity and went back to their straight selves. Sexy lashes? I think not!

This is what I get with Lights, Camera, Lashes:

And this is what I get with my go-to Maybelline fatty tube.

I personally don’t think I see more length, volume, or curls with Lights, Camera, Lashes.

I have been too bummed out by the bad curl-holding capacity of this mascara to take a photo of my straight lashes at the end of the day. Perhaps I should, just so you can see the sad state my lashes end up in…

Bottom line: Sorry, Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes, but you and I are never meant to be. At 18 dollars a pop and with all the wonderful claims you make, I really expect you to perform better. I wouldn’t recommend this to people who need a lot of help in the lash department, particularly if your lashes are not naturally curly. You might have to look somewhere else instead.

As with all the other products that don’t work for me, I would like to remind everybody who comes across this post that just because it doesn’t work for me doesn’t mean it won’t work for you. I have heard people rave about this mascara, including the curl-holding aspect, so who knows? If you have the chance of trying it for yourself in Sephora you might be pleasantly surprised!

What do you think? Have you tried this one? What is your current go-to mascara?

PS: If you go to the picture of the back of the tube, you will see the international address of Tarte is located in Brussels. I am really tempted to drop by one day and figure out why we don’t have access to this brand at all here! Who’s with me? lol

Sunny xx