Snap! Judgements: Scents and Sensibility

Loads of stuff came in, in the last couple days/weeks, and let’s try and catch up, shall we?

Snap! I haven’t really been all that fussed about not having a boyfriend, but I got a wee sample of Chanel’s Allure Homme Sport in the post, and um, yeah, okay, I’ll have one now, please? Because I would like to douse him in this. It smells sexy and delicious. It’s €81.50. Nope, still want to just bathe a dude in this stuff.

Snap! I am intrigued by Pukka Ayurveda, which is available in The Health Store (locations across Dublin.) I like the idea of tailoring your diet and lifestyle according to your body type, and wonder if it really works. I am also into face oils right now, so the combination of the ayurveda and the Nourishing Face Oil (€36.66) was really appealing. Smells great, absorbs perfectly, but I couldn’t tell if this was dosha-related or not, and then a few hours later the skin around my nose — the only sensitive area on my whole face — started feeling itchy. Hmm.

Snap! Do you want to smell like a piña colada? I didn’t think that I did, either, but I gave The Body Shop’s Coconut Body Mist a spritz and was immediately transported back in time to summer vacations Down the Shore, and suddenly all was right in my world. Time travel for €11.95! Not bad.

Snap! On the other hand, I took a look at the Wonder Waterproof Mascara in Wonder Mint by Clarins (€24.40), and went “Whoa, hey, 1981 just rang and it wants its mascara back!’ See the colour of the tube? That is the colour of the product. it was with great trepidation that I applied it and… it’s not all that aqua-y when you put it on. Here’s another Photo Booth special:

It creates a vibe of aqua without it looking like you’ve painted your lashes greeny-blue.

So, not the snappiest of judgements, but see? See what happens when you make a decision based on reaction rather action?

Let this be a lesson to us all.

Snap! Judgements: Only Two Today

Weird day: went to a PR event, which wasn’t weird, but I almost went to The Dylan instead of the Brasserie du Pont — actually, this is not weird either, I’ve been going to the wrong places for things for about a year now. Sometimes on the wrong day, and one time? Wrong month.

Then I wandered over to the archaeology and history museum which has a freaky exhibit of bog bodies? I think there should have been a warning, I really do. Because: gross, and also I felt sad.

And then what… oh. I’m listening to the radio station that I loved when I lived in Paris (RFM Musique) which was great because they played American music, so it’s not really working the way I thought it would, like, all la vie en rose, or whatever. They are playing Mambo Number Five right now, which does not make me think of Paris, but of my first year living here — my cognition, it is dissonating!

Snap! BREMENN RESEARCH LABS Upper Eyelid Lifter (€60) really feels like it is lifting up my lids! It’s beige, which strikes me as weird, because most eye stuff is white. I’ll get over it, because this the provides instant gratification. Seems dead pricey, but one pump is good enough for both eyes. I’d say this’ll last a good while.

Snap! THE BODY SHOP Lip & Cheek Dome in Crazy for Coral (€15). Me, I’m not so crazy for coral. There is a version in  Pinch Me Pink that looked way more like my thing. The domey-ness of it is pretty cool, and it is very creamy, so it feels nice to apply, but I wasn’t impressed by the pigment, which was pretty weak. That was several snaps, I think.

Actually, this day does make sense, as I eat the second of two Ladurée macarons that were presented with the Eau Thermale Avéne sun protection  products we received at the presentation at the brasserie. This is all French stuff. Okay, less cognitive dissonance, and more making sense out of apparent chaos. Maybe the bog bodies were unlucky Normans who wandered beyond their remit? We’ll never know. {Thanks all the same, I don’t want to.}

Lip Balm-a-holic

Why mince words? I am addicted to lip balm. When I went away Down the Country for Easter, I had a mild panic attack on the train when I realised that I was using my new rucksack, into which I had failed to put a balm of some description.

Of what description? Any description: stick, gel, liquid, scrub, in a tube or a pot. You name it, I’ve tried it, and there is nothing I love more than discovering a new one to love.

DARPHIN Age-Defying Lip Balm’s little flat pot it very sexy, so stylish and sophisticated. But can we judge a lip balm by its cover? Up to a point. It goes on smooth and smells lovely, but it seems to require rather more frequent application than one would like. I’ve found it is really useful to use underneath lipstick. I tend to keep this one in my ‘leather’ jacket pocket, to use on an evening out: a quick swipe of this, and then a reapplication of whatever lippy or gloss I chose, and it is real treat after you’ve worn out yer mouth talkin’ and drinkin’, or you know, whatever. €32.63

I do love me some NUXE Lip Balm with Honey and Precious Oils because the honey and precious oils are glorious. Unfortch, it’s simply not portable as it comes packaged in a heavy glass jar. Now, this is the kind of glass jar that inspires me to day dream about having a vanity table with all manner of beautiful glass jars strewn across its surface — but this is not an on-the-spot sort of touchy-uppy balm. It has, however, been to hand as my pre-sleep lip treat, and it has almost run out. Sadness. €12.50

As packaging goes, a tin is my least favourite, and the ones from THE HANDMADE SOAP CO. seem extra difficult to open. Their Choco-Mint Lip Balm makes it all worth it in the end, because A) chocolate and B) mint. And also because the product is silky and deeply moisturising. The brand is Irish-based, so even more impetus to support them. Because I find the tin so fiddly, I keep this one on my desk. €4.50

EAU THERMALE AVÉNE Cold Cream Lip Cream first came to my attention in stick form, and I wasn’t so crazy about it. It was okay, but not great. I think that the tube applicator, however, is great. I was also a bit freaked by the notion of putting cold cream on my mouth, because: ick, but it’s not like your granny’s old-fashioned stuff. I like to use this one after horseriding or swimming: it softens and soothes on the spot. €10

Speaking of chocolate, THE BODY SHOP Chocomania Lip Butter says very clearly on the back that it is ‘unfit for consumption’. This is a useful warning, because this stuff is so chocolately, and so buttery, you may be tempted to spread some on your morning brioche. On first contact it is excellent, and the texture is luxurious, but I didn’t feel like it really sank in and did the job. Nevertheless, the scent is a real pick-me-up. I’m not sure where I’ll keep this yet, although I’m thinking it may be the new bedside balm. €7.50

Two things: this is the tip of the lip care iceberg, and I intend further posts on the balms I have known. And! I am not alone in this obsession! When out with a couple of friends for a Christmas meal last year, we all started passing around our balms after we ate, like a strange version of after-dinner brandies. What followed was an in-depth discussion of the pros and cons of the balm currently in service, and then an inventory of all the other ones we had on the go. Between us, we had roughly seventeen lip care items in active service. For real. If you are of the same persuasion, it looks like we have the makings of a support group…

Snap Judgements*: Springing into Summer

Or ‘summer’ as we generally call it in these parts. No! Let’s be more positive than that! We are springing into SUMMER here in Ireland, yeah!!! Let’s fake it ’til we make it!

Ahem. Snap Judgements is the way that you, the reader, can experience what it’s like to be a beauty journo when the stuff starts piling up on the desk. I’m going to give my instantaneous responses to a variety of products, and over time we’ll see if I was too hasty or dead on target.

Let’s begin… Continue reading

Happy Holiday Face!

To me, a happy holiday face is radiant, glowing with comfort and joy. This face may also glow with product, to enhance and illuminate those happy holiday feelings.

Or manufacture them, as necessary.

Any of the below will give you gorgeous holiday face, and perhaps inspire you to shimmer year round.

I was very pleasantly surprised by the Smashbox Halo Highlighting Wand, as I generally don’t believe that the brushes that come on the ends of things like this are useful. This one is, and the stuff that comes out of the wand is perfection itself: shimmer and coverage combine to highlight your cheekbones and temples, an to ensure that you appear your very best in all those holiday snaps.
I must admit that I haven’t always had the best skill in the world when using this kind of illuminator. I tend to default to sparkly powders that I just schmoosh all over my face. They work great, but they require a lot of reapplication. I brushed this on, and on it stayed, and actually made me look like I was born highlighting my facial structure.
€26/£22/$32
I am better at something like The Body Shop’s Radiant Highlighter because you just mix it in with your liquid foundation. There’s a bit of personal alchemy involved, finding the exact amount that works not only with your face, but also with your particular foundation, and it can be hit or miss. I find the result, which is subtly glowy, to be worth the effort. A little dab on the pointy bits of your face — if you are fortunate have to any, I have to pretend that I have visible bones — gives the look a bit more of a lift. The texture is on the heavy side, which may help with the alchemy: less is more. Don’t tell, but try mixing some into your body cream, then apply to your exposed arms and decolletage. It’s sexy.
€18.95/£11/$14

I bigged up the Orofluido Hair Oil and Gold Shimmer Gift Set mainly because of the little atomiser of fairy dust. It is terrific, it smells really good, and you can spray all over yourself which is all kinds of fun. I find that Orofluido gives me a perfect hair day every time {and we’ll get to that}, so a few puffs of sparkle in addition can only makes things even brighter, on every level imaginable.
€29.95/£26.99/not available in the US, sorry, betches.

Have lovely holiday! xx