Thursday, 26 June 2014

Evening Skincare Routine



Its been a long day, you're tired and all you want to do is curl up in bed and go to sleep (lets be honest - play on our phones for at least 15 minutes).  Skincare is quite often the last thing on our mind as bedtime approaches but taking care of your skin at night is so important! 

Think of it this way, in the morning we cleanse, tone, moisturise, prime, conceal, cover, powder... the list goes on, on average I spend at least 5-10 minutes ensuring my skin is looking its best every morning.  During the day our skin is coping with the products we put on our face as well as environmental factors such as the sun and wind making it hard for your skin to heal and repair as damage occurs.  The large majority of healing happens when we sleep so the best thing you can do for your skin is to help it out by spending a few minutes each evening giving it a clean slate to work with!

Waking up with beautifully clear skin is a great way to start the day, it not only makes you feel amazing but it makes for smoother application of makeup in the morning.  Below is my current evening skincare routine featuring some amazing products must-have products for gorgeous skin.

Cleanse/Make Up Removal

 
Cleans All by Skinfood is honestly one of the best value cleansers out there that actually does what it says, packed with essential oils and natural cleansers it is an absolute must have I can't live without! 

For a more in depth review check out my Skinfood review here. 

I use this product on a make up round to remove all traces of makeup/dirt etc.  If I have any stubborn spots I go in with my Trilogy Rosehip oil on a cotton tip which removes every little last trace of even the most stubborn eye makeup! 

Available from www.skinfood.co.nz

 

Tone

 
I am in love with Dermalogica Age Smart Antioxidant Hydramist -  I use this every morning and every night after cleansing and in the 6 months I have been using this product I have noticed a dramatic change in both my pore size and fine lines and wrinkles, especially my smile lines. 

This product is so hydrating which is really unusual for a toner which are generally quite drying.  It also is packed with antioxidants to help protect against free radicals. 

Dermalogica is a wonderful brand and they really listen to their customers concerns - they have just recently dropped all their prices across their online store so be sure to go and check them out.  www.dermalogica.co.nz


Moisture/Serum

 
I have recently started using Linden Leaves Porcelain Brightening Serum, it is a beautifully light moisturising cream which can help to correct sun damage left over from summer. 

What I  love about this product is the consistency, I was quite surprised that unlike most serums that can be runny/oily this is more like a concentrated moisturiser that is easy to apply and my skin just drinks it up. 

I use two pumps and apply all over my face, neck and d├ęcolletage. I have noticed my skin tone has evened out and some redness on my d├ęcolletage (from sun damage) is improving.  I can't wait to see what results will come from prolonged use!  Watch this space! 

Available from www.lindenleaves.com

 

Spot Treatment

 
It is no secret that I am a little bit in love with Trilogy Rosehip Oil, I have been using this for well over a year and will continue to use it for the rest of my life. 

Just recently I have been using this product as more of a spot treatment for breakouts and also as an eye cream and have been thoroughly enjoying the results.  I find that if you really massage the product into your breakout scars the healing time is dramatically decreased.

I also apply this sparingly to my entire eye area every night and love the way it brightens my under eye area and hydrates my fine lines.  Available from www.trilogy.co.nz

Lips

 
I religiously use a lip balm every night, I don't think I could go to sleep without one. 

In the past I have probably used at least 20 different brands which have all been moisturising to different levels but I have never encountered a product like the Linden Leaves Lip Balm.  Rather than creating a waxy barrier on your lips this product actually penetrates into your lips leaving them intensely moisturised without them feeling cakey. 

It also helps to combat fine lines on and around your lip area, taking this into consideration it really is more than just a lip balm! 

Available from www.lindenleaves.com

 

 

Pressed For Time

 
 If you have only a minute or so to spare facial cleansing wipes are the singles best product you can use in the evening.  I am a huge fan of Swisspers Spa Facial Cleansing Wipes. 


This range of wipes is amazing! I have tried a lot of other wipes in the past by big name brands and in my opinion these are far superior.  The wipes are beautifully scented and is heavily saturated in product which is great for getting off make up, I find that the saturation level of this wipe makes it easier to remove make up and it is better for your skin as you don't have to scrub as hard to remove all traces of makeup.  The formulation works well, even when removing stubborn eye make up and leaves your skin feeling amazingly refreshed after use.  I pick these up from The Warehouse for around $6.



Wednesday, 18 June 2014

All About Brows

Hi my name is Sarah and I am an eyebrow addict!  I started tweezing in my early teens and I was slightly, okay - who am I kidding, majorly ocd.  There was not a stray hair in sight and you better believe that if I misplaced my tweezers all hell would break loose.  Mid teens there was an incident where (for some stupid reason) I put a huge sticker across my forehead which upon removal left me with half a left eyebrow.  My late teens saw my first ‘grow out’ (based on a dare challenge by my flatmate at the time) it was pure hell, my tweezers were so lonely without me and let’s just say that during my twenties I more than made up for lost time. 
 
You name it my brows have been through it, uneven, pencil thin, bushy thick, too far apart, too close, too straight, too arched… the list goes on.  Now having turned 30 I am on the tail end of a grow out period and I couldn’t be happier with the results, after 16 years I think I may have finally cracked the eyebrow code and there is nothing I enjoy more than searching out products to enhance and define my brows.  

I am a huge fan of DIY beauty and apart from having by brows waxed and tinted ONCE in my life I do it all at myself at home. Today  I am rounding up my top tips and must haves for DIY beautiful brows for any price point.

Grooming – To tweeze or not to tweeze?

Personally I find a combination of tweezing and waxing is a great combo.  I like to tweeze my eyebrow shape (close to my brows) and use wax to remove the finer hairs below, above and in between my brows.

 

I use Manicare Gunmetal Slanted tweezers, these are amazing quality and are available from most department stores and pharmacies for under $15.  The pair I currently have had been in use for around 3 years and still work like a dream.  I much prefer using slanted tweezers as they allow you to get in close to the root of the hair which ensures that you are pulling out the entire hair not just ripping it off at the base.

My wax of choice is the Nads Facial Wand Eyebrow Shaper, I have found this to be an easy and fast way for removal of the fine hairs that you miss when tweezing. The application tip is great and if I need to disperse the wax further I use a clean orange stick (the ones for your nail cuticles). I love that the wax does not need to be heated as there is no risk of burning.

The formulation is pleasantly scented and easy to spread out.  I strongly recommend when using this product that you follow the instructions carefully to get the best results, do not rub the wax on the cotton sheet too much before removal or the wax will become too warm and will not adhere to your hair properly and will pull and rip the hair rather than removing it from the root.  This product also comes with some wax removal wipes which are wonderful to use to remove any wax residue left behind after waxing.

Filling in your brows

This is a must do and in my opinion makes a huge difference to your look whether you are going for a natural make up look or a dramatic full face.  I switch between using a pencil and a gel, I am not a big fan of powders as I don’t like the finish.  When filling in I always start from the centre of my brow and do the tail ends first using short strokes, I line the top and bottom of my brows and fill in the middle, I then move on to the inner brow with a lighter hand for a more natural finish.
 
 

SAVE

 
e.l.f Studio Eyebrow Kit
Purchase from Beauty Bliss NZ$10.00
 
Chi Chi High Definition Eye Brow Pencil
Purchase from Chi Chi Cosmetics AU$9.95
 

SPLURGE

Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade
Purchase from Anastasia Beverly Hills US$18.00
Bobbi Brown Brow Pencil
Purchase from Bobbi Brown Cosmetics $US22.00

 


Setting your brows

Nobody likes stray hairs popping out of your perfectly groomed brows so I like to set mine with a gel formulation, I apply in small brush strokes from the inner to the outer brow ensuring that the product is worked into the brow and you can’t see any clumpy bits.  Once the product has been applied I lightly tap over my brows to again ensure an even application.

SAVE


e.l.f. Essential Lash & Brow Clear Mascara
Purchase from Beauty Bliss $8.00
 

SPLURGE


Benefit Gimme Brow
Purchase from Smith & Caugheys $41.00
 

Eyebrow Tinting


1000 Hour Lash & Brow Tint
Tinting your brows at home… Can it be done, in short YES!  I have done this for years and it is so simple and inexpensive that you simply must give it a go if you have medium brown to black brows, if you have very light brows I would leave it up to the professionals as the over the counter tinting dyes do not have the best range of colours.  DO NOT USE HAIR DYE – I cannot stress this enough!  Trust me you will regret it big time, hair dye is not for facial hair – do not even entertain the thought of going there!

I use the 1000 Hour Lash and Brow tint in dark brown.  As my brows are a little lighter than dark brown I don’t leave the solution on for the recommended time, I leave for 5 minutes and find this works well.  If you are trying this product for the first time I strongly recommend you do a series of trial and errors, first leaving the solution on for 2 minutes, removing and judging the results, you will then be able to determine how long you need to leave the product on next time as it is much easier to apply more colour than it is to remove!


The 1000 Hour Lash and Brown tint is available from most pharmacies for around $25.  I dye my brows every 6 weeks and one container lasts me well over a year.  I do my lashes at the same time using the recommended amount for one application and there is always plenty of solution to do both your lashes and your brows – total bargain.

Not into DIY?

If you are not confident with brow maintenance our top tip is to visit a beautician for a shape and tint, once they have your shape sorted it can make home maintenance much easier as you have a guide to work to, pluck any strays, wax the fine hairs and don’t leave it too long without any maintenance at all.  Tweezing a few strays each day when you are doing your make up is much easier than sitting down to an extreme tweezing session and you are less like to over tweeze!