The Thing About Samples: Sisley Paris All Day All Year

The thing is, samples can make you want something.

Want this:

I am not a comprehensive Sisley fan. That Black Rose Cream Mask is beast, but I found the Global Perfect Pore Minimizer to be no use a’tall. I’ve had more time for their makeup, in fact — Phyto-Ombre Glow Luminous Eyeshadow, and Mascara So Intense, yes and yes — and generally tend to choose between either skincare or face paint when I’m thinking about a brand. {Do I? Will have to give that a serious think.}

I had a facial ages ago in the Brown Thomas beauty rooms, and of course the products show to their best effect when used by a pro. I got some wee samples, hence the above, and they’ve been languishing in one of my organisational units. I went on my usual New Year Clearing Out Tear, and it was either pitch it or give it a go, so I reckoned, just use it — why let even .13 ounces of something really expensive got to waste.

Well, this stuff is terrific. Which is bad news because: spendy — ruinously so. At €250 for 50 mls, I guess I have about €3 worth of this stuff in that wee pack. The thing is, my skin felt both tightened and moisturised simultaneously, which sounds impossible, but in practice, feels exactly correct and what you want out of an anti-aging product. I felt like I was fighting dryness and gravity — and! my foundation looked amazing even after a full day out and about. This promises that after 28 days of use, you’ll look more youthful, and I gotta say, I’d love to give that a try…

Is it worth €250/£236/$410? Will I wait for your answer until you pick yourself up off the floor?


It may be worth cruising by your local Sisley counter to see will they give you a little sample of this extreme goodness…


A Miscellany of Brushes: My Top Ten

MY BRUSHESMake up brushes had always seemed an indulgence to me, and were also an extra bunch of fiddly things that couldn’t stand up on their own — which meant I’d have to find a place to keep them, and in most of the places I’ve lived in the last… yikes, fifteen-point-six years, there’s been minimal bathroom-room.

There was also a thing where I was keeping the sets inviolate? Which is like, what? I got over that. And I was, okay, maybe a tiny bit intimidated by make up brushes — got over that, and haven’t looked back. They really are good for you, and your face.

Got well over that, found a jar to hold ’em, and got down to putting together, no matter their provenance, my own personal collection of brushes. There are others, for sure, and someday perhaps they will move into the rotation. In fact, I’ve made some changes to this lot already, and I only took this photo a month ago.

From the left!

> The BENEFIT Foundation Brush is the best one I’ve tried. I prefer my fingers, no matter the truth that every MUA routinely lays down — that truth being that you get better coverage with less product. I get annoyed because: one more thing to clean!

> I don’t even know that JO MALONE make brushes anymore, but this big, puff ball of goodness is genius for applying loose powder, and pressed powder that I don’t want to be too matte.

> ISADORA‘s ginormous Kabuki is perfect for bronzer, and blush if I use just the very middle chunk of bristles. Which it is entirely possible to do.

> TRISH McEVOY‘s eyelash comb. I found the metal scary near my eye the first time I used it, but now I am fearless. Should probs clean that too, oops.

> Hmm, where did that come from… MARKS & SPENCER, I think? The eyelash comb, as you can see, did not travel well, and is toothless — but the little wedgey brush at the bottom is flawless when it comes to applying dark pigment at the lash lines.

> BOBBI BROWN is my only woman for smudging. {At the moment, anyway… I’ve just gotten me paws on a SMASHBOX Blending Brush, and it may join the crowd.}

> The SISLEY PARIS brush is okay, and it may lose its spot in the Top Ten. In fact, it already has because:

> The DR HAUSCHKA Dear Eyes Limited Edition brushes are fab. That’s the Definer pictured, and the Blender is fantastic, too, and will be shifting the Sisley out of the way.

> Have no idea where that wee Kabuki came from, but it travels exceptionally well, and is a staple in my daily going-out make up bag.

I’ve also got a REAL TECHNIQUES blush brush, and a BODY SHOP blush brush near to hand, but I notice that I rarely wear blush {Should I?!?}, and one-a them fan-shaped deals, via SMASHBOX, with which to apply that fabulous white stiff, the Photoset Finishing Powder, which I need to post about.

So many brushes, so little time!


A swipe of brushes? Thinking their might be a better collective noun…


Tried & Tested @ The Herald: Foundation

This week, I worked with several different brand’s foundations. How’d they do? Here’s the link!


HELLO! WOW!Speaking of which, I recently revisited BeneFit’s Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow Brightening Foundation. I hadn’t liked it a’atall when I first tried it, but now? I love it loads! Will get back to ye with a proper review, but I mention it as a case, which happens occasionally, in which I revisited a product and liked it better. Pro Tip™: using a foundation brush really, truly does make a dif. A true life case of ‘do what I say, not what I do,’ unfortch — I even remember the brand’s lead make up artist, LIsa Eldridge, showing us at the launch that using a brush is best. Tcha! Have I finally learned my lesson?!? Stay tuned…


When is Maintenance Too High? Sisley Paris Mascara Étoffant Fortifiant

I have silently been bemoaning the demise of my eyelash extensions, as I knew I would… They have just seemed so stubby, and it may chiefly be psychological, but I think it is actual as well. There was a whole thing in the post, linked above, about anagen phases and telegen phases, in reference to hair growth, and there’s no way that my lashes can have grown much since I removed them.

*Sigh* So when I got a sample of Sisley Paris Étoffant Fortifiant Mascara {that would be Thickening Fortifying, en Anglais}, I thought, ‘Excellent! Let us begin thickening and fortifying straightaway!’

I opened the tube, and drew out the wand.

Well, yuck! I know that there are folks who have to wipe down their wands {talk about yuck}, on a daily basis, but I’ve never had a problem with too much mascara on an applicator. As I like to say when it comes to this particular cosmetic: Too Much Is Never Enough.

Imagine my chagrin. I could see exactly where this was going to go: product allll over my eyelid, that annoying blot that never comes off. Those irritating little dots that land on your lids from the blinking. This was a mess just waiting to happen.

BLOTThat’s not as much blottage as I thought there would be. Doing the scrape-y thing at the mouth of the tube helped curb the excess. The comb itself doesn’t seem to hold that much mascara, at least not on the comb-y side. The flat side? Full up to the max of product just waiting to smear everywhere.

Now, here’s the thing. I consider this high maintenance. By extension, I consider that statement to be in my favour: if I think it’s too much work to wipe product off a wand, then despite my habitual and comprehensive use of the products of beauty, I am not wasting to much time in getting the stuff on my face.

Which! may be why I get blots and such on my eyelids! This mascara made me go slow, take my time, and practically coat each lash individually. The result?

Well, hurray! I am much happier than I look in that photo, let me tell you.

A key thing, though: this dries super fast, so if you want to get a million layers on, like I do, don’t wait very long in between applications. Also, be careful when applying to the back of the lashes, that’s where the little blobs make their presence known. I say that, knowing that I can blob even when I’m doing the fronts. Or bottoms and tops. Whatever! Be careful!

Huh. Looks like a little high maintenance product, every now and then, is no bad thing.


€44 — which is very O.o for mascara. I am assuming this will last me forever, if not an eternity?