Skin Care Regime

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So I finally have a new skin care regime and so far I’m liking it. In the past I’ve always used an entire skin care range for blemish-prone/oily skin but it’s always been a little strong for me. However, working with skin care has taught me I don’t need to stick to a whole range (especially a whole range of strong blemish fighting treatments) and than in fact, most people will benefit from using products in different ranges to address their needs.

So because my skin tends to be a tad dull I’m now using The Body Shop’s Vitamin C facial polish, with their Seaweed mattifying moisture lotion for oil control, with a nice gentle Kiehl’s cucumber herbal toner – I use this twice a day. I’ve been using the cleanser and moisturiser about a month or two now and my skin has been looking and feeling great. More radiant thanks to the cleanser and less oily thanks to the moisturiser. Clearly I did not need as much oily control as I thought and I think I may have been stripping too much oil away, causing my glands to over-produce. The toner is nice but I won’t see the real result until my skin has gone through its full 28 day skin cell renewal process.

Next I’m going to get Body Shop’s Seaweed mask and night cream, the Vitamin C microdermabrasion exfoliator and possibly a serum – in other words: when I have enough money. In case you were wondering, a serum hydrates the skin deeper than your normal moisturiser which effects the top skin layers, therefore a serum is what helps keep your skin looking young and healthy.

The other great thing about the range I’m now using: cheaper than Clinique’s Anti-Blemish Solutions. Not by a huge amount, only about $30 (for a full cleanse, tone, moisturise set), however any much more cheaper and I must admit I’d be skeptical about the ingredient quality.

Don’t get me wrong, Clinique is an amazing wonderful brand, but my skin doesn’t like their skin care range. And I’ve tried most of it. Their make-up however is still superior to everything I’ve tried (Chanel is next on my list of things to try) and it would take something amazing to pull me away from my Perfectly Real Liquid Foundation and my Almost Mineral Powder – they’re a perfect colour match. Their line-smoothing concealer is still my number one for days I’m doing proper make-up and need full under eye coverage, while Body Shop’s flawless concealer is fantastic for no-make-up/minimal-make-up days – but if we were to get into concealers for everywhere but the eyes, the two brands are evenly matched.

If you’re having skin problems and don’t have a very large budget for skincare products, go visit the Body Shop because I’m quite impressed by the quality of their skin care and I’m hard to convince about quality unless I experience it myself. Plus all the girls at TBS go through quite a detailed skincare consultation course where they learn how to determine what’s good for what skin. My training taught me all about aquaporoms, skin cell renewal, sensitivities and more! Also facial brushes are amazing. Even if you have a skincare regime that’s working well for you, go get a facial brush. I couldn’t even get my mascara off with make-up remover before I discovered them. And finally, if you’re still having problems with your skin re-evaluate your choice in make-up. It might not be the right type for your skin and if you’re wearing it nearly everyday like me it’s important to get it right.

Recent get-ups

Today’s Outfit editions from today, yesterday and last Wednesday. Please excuse my lateness with the posts, uni work was taking up all my attention.

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Top: Sass and Bide
Shorts: Nicholas
Shoes: Tony Bianco Devon
Necklace: Lovisa

Above is a variance of an outfit I’ve already blogged about. I feel like it’s a bit more glam biker chic than the other version. Comfy of course and a good autumn outfit for the tropics where it’s still stinking hot and humid.

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Dress: Parker
Shoes: Natasha
Bag: Louis Vuitton
Jewellery: Robert Clerc scarab earrings and ring, Tree of Life silver bracelet.

Above is the outfit I wore out last night. I lusted after this dress for months but it was around Christmas when I was spending all my money on my family’s gifts. Luckily 3 months later I found a small at online store Madison Los Angeles. Dad just so happened to be unsure about birthday present ideas for me and so this dress is my birthday gift from Dad. I did have to get it taken in all the way down the side seams, however. Even now it’s a bit baggy on my waist but it’s also a loose fitted dress so it’s not too obvious.
I really should have worn my red London Rebel pumps with the dress and my dark chocolate coloured clutch from Witchery but I was in a hurry and my Natasha heels where first in sight. The dress is very comfortable and I wanted it because it’s quite conservative but still chic – I could wear it to dinner with family, wear it with a blazer for a work look, or wear it out to a bar like I did last night. It’s one of those chuck on and go dresses that requires minimal hair effort too.

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Top: Ba&sh
Shorts: Ksubi
Shoes: Vans Authentic

A casual look I did for uni the the other day. I love Ksubi’s shorts and these are quite comfy – I have a pair in black and in this faded blue colour. So many different options to wear with them too (as you can see below when I was trying to decide how to style them). It was raining all last week, so I figured a long sleeve top would stop me getting cold in the rain. Too bad it stopped raining that day and got very humid. I felt this look had an ever so slight retro feel to it with the faded blue shorts and red kicks. I’ll probably never wear anything more retro than this too. It wouldn’t suit me, in my own opinion. If you find these shorts at your local Ksubi stockist or online then definitely grab a pair (and don’t be afraid to go one size up like I did – they’re comfier that way). You won’t regret it.

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Finally, it’s not clothing but below is a make-up look I had to do for work the other day. We each got given a look to complete on ourselves by the end of the week. I got given Rae Morris’ China Doll Eyes. Basically, it’s done like so:
1. a big sweep of deepish purple across the outer 2/3rds of the eye,
2. bright blue eyeshadow on the inner 1/3rd and top and bottom inner-corner of the eye,
3. blend the two nicely,
4. thickish purple eyeliner again 2/3rd of the way across the top lash-line,
5. a deeper blue eyeliner on the top lash-line and 1/3rd of the bottom lash-line,
6. smudge eyeliners a bit,
7. a thiner line of black eyeliner where the purple liner is on the top lash-line as well as lining the bottom lash-line (except in the blue area),
8. lots of mascara to finish!
It probably sounds more complicated than it is; I don’t lie when I say it’s easy. Also, don’t forget to go just above the eye crease to the brow bone a bit. Otherwise if you have heavy lids like me it won’t be visible.

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Christmas goodies

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One of the reasons I enjoy Christmas has nothing to do with Christmas in a way. Every year around the holiday season make-up companies seem to release awesome little gift packs filled with great make-up and it’s usually heaps cheaper than normal.

Lancôme does a great little eye kit every now and then, consisting of one of their mascaras, eye make-up remover and an eyeliner for the same price as the mascara normally. Good bargain! Plus the Hypnôse Drama mascara is only sold in certain stores (at least, according to a make-up assistant) and luckily was one of the mascaras offered in a pack. I refuse to use any other mascara as this is by far the best brand and type I’ve come across.

Make sure you head to your local chemist, department store or beauty shop to see what deals they have in store. Do not miss out on saving some money and trying a few new pieces. Like me, you might be able to do your yearly make-up change over and pick up some extra bits and bobs on the way!

Fashion school is in session!

So lately I’ve noticed myself breaking out of my usual fashion trends, which I love! I find that every few years I have a bit of a fashion epiphany and my eyes are opened to so many more, opportunities, I guess.

Recently, this started with make-up. My usual regime consisted of cover-up, foundation, mascara and maybe if I was going out somewhere special – liquid eyeliner (even though I’m 5th generation Chinese, charcoal and kohl always leaves weird lines on the top of my eyelids). However, recently I got a free Clinique eyeshadow pack when I bought new foundation. Now I’ve never been an eyeshadow girl. Possibly something to do with the fact that my eyeshadow experience extended only to stage make-up from ballet concerts; which let’s admit, is a little over the top and sometimes a bit scary.

Nowadays, unless I’m heading to uni for a lecture looking daggy, I wear it everywhere. I haven’t progressed from various shades of brown or pink yet, but I’m getting there. This then followed by the discovery that I can actually pull off blush. Now I’ve always used the bright pink colours – again, stage make-up material due to dance concerts – and I’ve also never been a fan of bronzers on me. However, I recently discovered a very soft pink in the form of Napoleon Perdis. If I’m going out, I can mix it with the darker shade of pink the palette offers and by putting powder over the top, I don’t look like I’m about to jump into my tutu.

Little did I realise, none of this takes very long to apply and therefore, my morning-routine is not disturbed and I get a different look to my now ‘uni make-up’.

My next discovery, hairstyles I previously thought looked shocking actually aren’t that bad if you play around with it. Now, I’ve always been a fringe girl. Too afraid to show too much of my face because I’ve always thought I had a funny face shape. In my teenage years, the fringe did cause some dilemmas. When you’re in your adolescent stage, it’s hormones galore and with it comes the problems of skin care. So last year (during summer when I had a full set of bangs) I decided I would have to tie it all up to fix the issue. This is when I discovered the cute fringe braid and a messy bun didn’t look anywhere near as bad as I thought. It was also the best trick ever for disguising a bad hair day. Tomorrow I’m thinking of attempting the centre part and braid my fringe back to either side. Could be disastrous, but we’ll see. I haven’t had a centre part since, probably, year 8? So 6-7 years ago. I’ve also started testing out cute little hair clips. I got a simple $10 one from Equip which I use to hold my fringe back on the opposite side to that I part my hair on. It gives a bit of a different look and is perfect for days when only my fringe is being bad.

Fashion wise, I’ve been opening my mind to new styles and fashions. I’ve also decided to develop a habit where even if I dislike someones outfit, I try to work out what they like about it and how it works in their eyes. I’m now a HUGE fan of flowy outfits. Although, being petite I must be careful when treading the fine line between all that is flowy and those that are like a hessian sack. Getting out of your comfort zone is actually rather fun. The number of people around who dress appallingly, or the same every single day, is amazing. Therefore, my theory is you might as well experiment. There’s been quite a few times this year where I’ve rocked up at work and said to my work friend, “please tell me this actually works?”. Last year, I wouldn’t have been caught dead in ‘Aladdin pants’ (as my father calls them) or so many feminine, soft and flowy outfits. I have still retained some of my more darker/alternative fashions, however my blacks are now mixed with ultra-feminine neutrals and it definitely feels more me.

I will definitely continue opening my mind to different styles of fashion. I’m not yet sure about what I will encounter, but I’m sure it will be fun!