Sunday, 31 January 2016

Favourites Of The Month x January

I'm just going to be doing a quick post on my January favourites, since it's almost the end of the month - and BOY, did it pass by so quickly. I remembered going shopping on New Year's Eve like it was just a few days ago... really feels odd. I've been quite busy with a studio site visit for one whole week, and it was crazy - being under the hot sun for a full day and measuring every single corner of a temple we were assigned to. I didn't even notice that we've been there for 4 days straight. While my teammates and I were resting at the porch of the temple, we saw a group of tourists going in, and one of them couldn't last for even 5 minutes there, and was coughing so badly because of the incense smoke. I felt so bad for her but also felt really badass because all of us didn't bat an eye however hard it gets. Kudos to us.

So. Having said that, it is time to relax and de-stress myself by being here on my blog, and what better way than to be writing about some January favourites. It's therapeutic as f**k. This list includes all of the products I have been reaching for a lot and recent discoveries that has exceeded my expectations as well (and became a favourite, duh). This is going to be a long one, so switch on your air-conds (for peeps in KL, it's super hot here right now, am I right?), grab some of those Royce Nama Chocolates or a salad (whichever, I support you whole-heartedly), and kick back with me. Here we go.

The *ultimate* January Favourites beginnnnnns now.

1. Bobbi Brown Blush Brush

I have had this brush for over a year now, and it is the only blush brush that I own - simply cause it's the only blush brush I need. I've never talked about this on the blog, so I'm adding it onto my favourites this month. From the shape of the brush itself, you can see that the brush is very densely packed and has a dome-shape to it which isn't too round, if that makes sense. It's almost okay for you to use this as a contour brush if you want a more diffused sculpt, as the handle shapes the brush to be flatter on its' sides. The bristles are made from natural hair (mixture of goat and pony) and oh lorddddd, it is so so soft. So fluffy and soft that almost everytime I freshly washed and dried the brush, I would go all over my (also freshly cleansed) face with this brush, and just sit there and let the brush pamper me. Don't judge me, if you're a makeup lover and you have a soft brush, I just know that you guys do it, too - pfft. The brush picks up products well and distributes colours evenly, so if I'm using my more pigmented blushers, I simply have to tap the brush onto the pan, lightly. Not only you're saving on your products, but your blusher would look on point. Hollerrrr. So, I would highly recommend you to drop by your Bobbi Brown counter and pick up this baby! Especially for those just starting out on building a makeup brush wardrobe.

2. Diorskin Star Sculpting Brightening Concealer

This babe of a concealer is just honestly off the charts. I have tried a good round of brightening concealers, like the YSL Touche Eclat, Laura Mercier's Secret Concealer and many many more. But I've never came to repurchase any of them, hence have been trying out so many other brands - until I got my hands on the Diorskin Star Concealer. Unlike its competitors, the Diorskin Star has the ability to actually cover the dark pigments on my under-eye area. Brightening concealers usually offers light-to-medium coverage which is so annoying because I don't want to cake up my under-eye area by adding more products, know what I mean? Not about that cake-face life. With the Dior concealer, I only need the tiniest bit and it covers any discolouration and tiredness around the eyes. If I'm on-the-go, this provides enough coverage for any spot-treating the skin. So I'm quite happy with the Diorskin Star - well, quite is an understatement actually because I'm very happy with the coverage it offers, how it is so blendable and the lightweight feeling that it has. I've purchased this last September I think (?) and have been using it ever since. Love.

3. M.A.C. 217 Blending Brush

There's a reason why this is the best-selling item at M.A.C. Cosmetics, I just got this a few weeks ago and it's immediately become my favourite brush because it makes blending waayyyy too easy. I think this brush is also responsible for making me enjoy using eyeshadows, and creating more complex eye looks lately! The 217 is oh-so fluffy and dense at the same time, and it is sooooo soft, again, it doesn't have anything to do with the performance of the brush, but it just makes your "me-time" so much more enjoyable. For now, I'm fine with just having the 217 in my brush collection, but I have to be honest, I've been eyeing for Suqqu brushes next *gasp*. My only comment on this brush is that since the bristles are white, I get really irritated if I don't clean it right after I use this. Ya I'm a bit anal about cleaning my brushes so it's either I'll pick up another brush, or I'll just have to suck it up and clean it everyday.

4. Marc Jacobs New Nudes Sheer Lip Gel in Anais

Fact : The scent that I have been using the longest time, 7 years and running, is the fragrance Daisy by Marc Jacobs. Because of the success of their fragrances and clothing line, I was intrigued by the Marc Jacobs Beauty line. I've had my doubts, not all luxury brandnames were consistent with the quality of their beauty lines. So, I picked up the Sheer Lip Gel in Anais, which is a gorgeous brownish nude to test out their lipstick range. To my surprise, I loved using this and was pulling it from my lip stash constantly. The formulation of the lipstick is very comfortable on the lips, and the pigment of the colour Anais shows up on my skin, despite it being a "nude" nude. This lipstick smells delicious, too. Like vanilla buttercream, and I love it. It retails for MYR100, which is not bad at all for a high-end product. And did I mention that it is very, very heatproof? Lipstick bullet lasts through a day of camping without melting off. Awesome.

5. By Terry Rouge Terrybly in 100 Terrybly Nude x Perfect Lip Liner in 1. Perfect Nude

I have talked about this in a previous post, which is a full-on test drive review (you can read all about it here). But for a quick recap, the Rouge Terrybly lipstick is a plumping, anti-aging lipstick, and most probably is the motherland of all lip products, and I've tried a lot. Dubbed as the Steve Jobs of Cosmetics, Terry de Gunzburg did an impeccable job with the Rouge Terryblys, especially on the nude shade, 100. I often use this when I'm feeling a little bit fancy and want a bit of oomph on my lips because it virtually plumps up my lips. Yes. It does. If you're one to try out that Kylie Jenner overlined lips - but you don't want to look borderline drag (sorry Kylie), opt for a lip plumping lipstick like the Rouge Terrybly. The colour is quick tricky to use, if you're not used to blanked out nudes, but over a lip liner, I use the By Terry Lip Liner in Perfect Nude, it won't be an issue. I don't mind this because I use every lip product with a lip liner, anyway. Hence, that is why both of these products are hand-in-hand on the favourites list :)

6. Eucerin Lip Aktiv SPF15

I got this in desperation, because my lips were chapped as f*** for the past month, I don't even know why. I couldn't take it anymore on one particular night, dropped by my local drugstore, initially to get Aiman's toiletries (come thruuu Guardian), and picked up this Eucerin lip treatment because honestly the packaging looks so sterile, and I assumed it was a no-fuss, good ol' lip balm. Fortunately, I was right. This lip treatment contains Vitamin E and shitloads of Dexpanthenol. Basically it speeds up skin regeneration, and improves the hydration rate on the outer layer of the skin as well as maintaining it's softness and elasticity. My lips are absolutely well hydrated throughout the day, and definitely feels softer (I use this at least twice a day). At night, I swipe the lip treatment across the lips, build the layers up and let it sink into the lips overnight. I believe you can use this over any rough patches on the skin, but I'll have to either sterilise it first or melt it into a jar, it'll be more convenient that way. I'll let you know what's up.

7. Caudalie Make-Up Remover Cleansing Water

I treat my skincare routine like it's a spa day, literally every night, and it takes too long sometimes that I spend close to an hour to do the whole thing hahaha. BUT - this micellar water comes in handy for when I'm exhausted coming back from the studio, and I just need a quick cleanse at the end of the day. It has a refreshing effect to tired skin from the mixture of ingredients in the solution, which is perfect for those long hours of CAD-ding and Photoshop-ing (design students, you feel me?), so I'm still not missing out on that spa-like routine I do. I love the formulation of the Caudalie micellar, it doesn't sting my eyes, and jives well with my sensitive, dry skin.

8. Dior Hydra Life Creme Serum

I've been using this for over a year now, and this moisturiser have one of the most unique textures I have tried to date. It has a very lightweight consistency, you can see from the picture above, but it hydrates your skin so well, and leaves a very apparent glow after the product has sunk into the skin. I prefer using this during the night-time as it is very, very hydrating, but since it doesn't feel like a heavy cream, I suppose it's okay to use it during the day, as well. When it's not too hot outside. The moisturiser is infused with youth essential hydrating essence from the exclusive Dior Gardens. This is my go-to moisturiser for when my skin is feeling parched after a long day out. The price tag for this one is a bit hefty, close to MYR300 for a tub. I mean, that is outrageously expensive. I bought this last year for my birthday, so I suppose if I buy it for my 2016 birthday, it will be slightly justified. Hahaha.

9. Tata Harper Moisturising Mask

From my Net-A-Porter Summer Edit (reviewed on my blog ages ago), I received a travel sized Tata Harper Moisturising Mask. When I opened the jar, I was baffled to how this very runny, very thin liquidy product will ever be able to do its job right. Really. But to my surprise, it did it job pretty good. I suppose the runny consistency that it has actually runs to its advantage. Massaging it into the skin, the product sinks in very quickly and leaves a comfortable feeling on the skin. I use this as an overnight treatment, every now and then. Even though the travel size jar is very very small, this mask has lasted me for almost 8 months now. You don't need a lot of product for it to cover your whole face, and I don't need to build up the layer, as well. Tata Harper reigned as a holy grail for many, many beauty editors and I can see why.

9. iS Clinical Active Serum

This stuff works hard core. It promises to reduce pigmentation, and to smooth out the skin, and it does exactly that. I use this as a spot-treatment as my skin might be too sensitive to apply it as a face serum, and it definitely works wonders in reducing any spots and mild cystic acne and bumps on my skin. Be very wary of this serum if you're planning on a purchase because it has very mixed reviews online. Might be unsuitable for certain skin types but it definitely works well with mine. But that goes to any other products too, if you're planning to make a purchase, do your research first. It will save you from wasting your time and money.

10. Urban Decay Naked 2 palette

*A slight addition to the January favourites list, it completely slipped my mind to mention the star of the show, Urban Decay's Naked 2. I got this as a birthday present years ago and never got around to using it - ever. I found that the colours were too metallic, it was too smokey-eyed, so I gave it a pass but still held on to it in my stash. I did a swatch review on it in my previous blogpost, and completely fell in love with it again. I love to use Booty Call as a highlight on the centre of my lids, the lightest colour Foxy as a base colour and for a pop of colour - Chopper, Suspect and Verve are absolutely stunning. If you own a Naked 2 palette, I think it's time to revisit it and fall in love all over again. 

So, that is the end of my January favourites! What are your current favourites? Let me know in the comments. The post has been long enough so I will cut it short here, so thank you for hanging out with me! Have a good day x


Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Late-Night Swatches : Urban Decay Cosmetics

Urban Decay Cosmetics has been one of those brands, if it were a person, would just be that girl I consistently pass by on my way to class, and we'll say hi - but we just don't hang out. Simply because we just don't "click". It's like having a studio group mate who does his/her job well - but you guys just don't share the same design aesthetic - you know that your approach is totally different, your final boards aren't going to be alike - but I know she's going to get an A, anyway. It's just one of those things. Well, an exaggerated version of it - but you get what I mean. But for tonight's Late-Night Swatch, we are definitely hanging out, and the stellar Urban Decay is going to be swatched, reviewed and appreciated for consistently coveting straight A's for her finals. The two Urban Decay products I have chosen are the Revolution Lipstick in the shade Shame paired with the one and only Urban Decay's Naked 2 palette. 

I got this palette from my friend on my birthday about 3 years back. Yes, its been that long - the lipstick, was purchased over a year ago. I believe that the Revolution line is now split into two - which are the Matte Revolution and the Sheer Revolution. If anything, this lip colour is definitely not matte, so it falls under the sheer category, albeit not being sheer at all. I. With a single swipe, you get a clean opaque film of colour. My first Urban Decay purchase was their Glide-On 24/7 Lip Pencil in Manic (mauve toned) which is somewhere in Bali because I left it at the hotel during a Christmas holiday back in.. I wanna say 2014 (?) I'm not too sure haha. Aiman was not pleased. There wasn't a colour that I gravitated to on the Revolution Lipstick line besides Shame (swatched) and Liar (a browny pink nude). Since I wanted a vampy addition to my small lipstick wardrobe of 3 bullets back then, I opted for the darker colour instead.

Urban Decay currently has opened their independent flagship at KLCC's Centre Court, replacing the Famous Amos outlet (cries). I think they are carrying never-seen before products that wasn't readily available at Sephora, so, check them out! KLCC's Centre Court is now a makeup addict's haven because the whole block is lined with M.A.C., Nars, Urban Decay, Bobbi Brown, Aesop, Dior, Shu Uemura, Sephora, it's ridiculous. Tip : Don't bring people who are going to judge you for always buying makeup hahahaha. Moving on to the deets -

Naked 2 Palette


Since this was a present, I'm unsure of the exact price tag for this baby. But I think it's along the lines of MYR140- MYR160, I think. For a selection of 12 gorgeous shadows, this palette is definitely a steal. The Naked 2 palette is readily available at Sephora, and if you're a Black Card Sephora member, you can cut down your expenditure with the 10% discount, or you can wait till your birthday month approaches, where you get further discounts! With or without the sale, I think the palette is worth the money, and it comes with a decent double ended brush, too. It was the only eye brush I needed, till I got my M.A.C. 217 lol.


The Naked 2 palette consists of a mix of neutrals, cool-toned metallics, bronzes, golds, and rich browns which was honestly one of the best curated palettes by Urban Decay, for me. It has just the right amount of mattes - Foxy (eggshell white), Tease (cool-toned taupe), and Blackout (darkest black). Golden sheens for the pop of colour onto the lid and inner corners - Half-Baked (warm-toned gold), Booty Call (pale pinkish gold), Suspect (cool-toned gold) and Verve (golden-silver half and half). And last but not least, the silvers and the gorgeous bronzes - Chopper (rose gold bronze), Snakebite (deep golden bronze), Pistol (gunmetal metallic grey), YDK (deep copper) and Busted (rich chocolate). The colours mostly are very wearable, even for daytime wear as you can definitely sweep the shadow all over the lid for a sheer colour. The tonal palette on the Naked 2 is very tasteful and straight up gorgeous for a lot of skin tones.

Texture & Finish

The shadows are definitely very buttery and smooth for the 3 matte shadows. Often times, matte shadows can leave the lid looking powdery and cake, but the Urban Decay shadows are definitely cake-free (haha) and applies very smoothly onto the lid. Even with my dark lids, the paler colours definitely packs a lot of pigment for a full-coverage effect, so it saves me from applying concealer beforehand. The metallics and glitters are very full-on and pigmented and applies better with a flat eye brush or the fingers. I believe you can use this wet or dry, but to be safe, add the shadows to your brush first, then wet it with water/setting spray. These shadows have a lot of fall-out but I don't mind it at all, is that weird?

Application & Wear-Time

Despite what Urban Decay tells you, you don't really need the Primer Potion to amp up the pigment or the wear-time - the quality of the shadows is perfectly fine to last you the day. I mean, you're probably going to be wearing eye makeup for 12 hours at most and these shadows will definitely last . These shadows are best applied over a fine layer of translucent powder (especially if your lids are oily/over-moisturised) so you get a smooth canvas but other than that, it's really a fuss-free product. If you are already so used to using an eye primer, by all means go ahead - I'm just saying, you won't be needing it with these shadows.

L to R : Foxy, Half-Baked, Booty Call, Chopper, Tease, Snakebite, Suspect, Pistol, Verve, YDK, Busted

Revolution Lipstick in Shame


I believe I had bought this at MYR78 maybe (?) It was such a long time ago, pre-GST, so it might be slightly more expensive now. In comparison to other brands of lipstick that I own, the Urban Decay price range is not too outrageously expensive. Don't get me wrong, it still doesn't justify the amount of money that is being spent on a lipstick, cause you can just get a Wet N Wild lipstick for MYR20 and call it a day. I usually justify my spendings based on Aiman's expenditure *talk about unhealthy*. Since his car costs about MYR200 for a full tank, I can spend MYR78 for a lipstick. 


Shame is a deep, rich, blue-based berry which comes off as a really beautiful wine colour on my medium skin tone. Even though it is a very deep colour, it doesn't wash me out too much and I don't necessarily need to add a blush on when I use this colour. For paler skin tones, maybe just a touch - but I really like the idea of having a clean skin to be paired with Shame. I think this would fair well with all skin tones, really and there are so many different ways of using this one lipstick, so get creative!! I really like the colour of the lipstick, basically.

Texture & Finish

This lippie is super creamy and glides on like a dream. It feels very moisturising without feeling overly thick and textured, which is great but it does cling on to any dry patches on my lips, unfortunately. So, do use a proper lip treatment and scrub off any dead skin with a cotton bud and lip butters. It has a satin finish, which I don't really like for deeper colours, I'd rather a matte but this can easily be resolved with a pat of powder to top off the product for a matte finish. I love that this doesn't feel heavy on the lips because in warm weather, anything lightweight is heavily appreciated (lol see what I did there).

Application & Wear-Time

Urban Decay's Shame wears quite well on the longer days at the studio, to my surprise. I just need a few touch-ups after lunch break around the inner parts of the lips is just about it and for me, that is not quite high maintenance yet. But that's just me. I like that the lipstick packaging is quite weighted and sturdy so I know that it's safe in my bag pack and the lid is not going to come off and I'd get lipstick stain everywhere, the horror

I've had this lipstick for quite sometime - back when I was in Semester 1. I got so much wear out of it since I only had 2 or 3 lipsticks at hand (I had a Dior, a Givenchy and that's about it). I wasn't buying as much lipstick as compared to lip liners ,which I had a bunch of and was obsessed with. And I would use Boldly Bare by M.A.C. every single day, topped with a lip moisturiser. Anyway, I got this colour at Sephora KLCC which was the first ever Sephora I've been to and it's still my favourite, despite having so many products out of stock (sigh). I tried it on, and this colour looks so flattering that I just had to get it.

I've used this throughout the semester till I got sick of it. I've worn this during the daytime to class (how appropriate hahaha), I've worn this for dinners, this lipstick has been through it all. My studio mates (the girls, of course) told me this colour looks so great against my skin. I got to start wearing this again, because I've gone on a dark lip hiatus for close to a year now. 

I think it took me quite a while to get used to the grunge-punk-chic aesthetic that they have, with the names of the products and the packaging, in general. I mean, quality is still quality so don't judge a makeup by it's packaging, ok folks? Lesson learnt. Overall, my feelings towards Urban Decay has totally blossomed over the course of time, but I still don't know what to try next, so leave me a suggestion! What are your favourite Urban Decay products?


Thursday, 21 January 2016

Beat the Heat : Summer Skincare x Heat-Proof Makeup

Hi everyone! I apologise for the long hiatus since my last post but my phone was stolen! Yes, I know, I can't believe it, either. Hence, I have lost all the photos I have taken for my blog and I was devastated that I was forced to part ways with my trusty iPhone. But life goes on! I've been itching to post a write-up on heat-proofing your makeup since it's blazing hot here right now and I've begun my Architecture Practicum 1. For this semester, my colleagues and I are to measure the Sin Sze Si Ya Temple which is located smack in the middle of Kuala Lumpur - 

And yes, it's 34°C in Kuala Lumpur. 

I'll be up climbing roofs and trusses, measuring the ornaments and details. And trust me, for sure, it's going to be real hot.  Just picture going to work in your dress-code appropriate shirts and "i'm-the-boss" pants, you've put on that new foundation you bought over the weekend, you check yourself out in the mirror and you're ready to conquer the world (well, your office, anyway) ..

..and by lunch time - you're having your meltdown. Your makeup meltdown. 

We've all been there - the heat is crazy, your arms and legs get sizzled while driving in your car where the sun strikes your windshield, and you feel like taking a cold shower every second or jump into the waters - but you can't. Whether you're measuring a temple in the heart of the city, or walking along Jalan Ampang to grab a bite at the Intermark. Here's some extra steps I take when I'd have to be under the sun - 

1. Stay Hydrated

I find myself buying 5-6 bottles of water by lunch, so, before you jump into your car, pack up that generic tumbler (we all have one, don't lie) you have been dreading to be seen with - PLEASE - CAUSE IT'S REALLY HOT. Well, you can take this one instead - this tumbler by TeaTox suits all you minimalist fiend, would look so cool in your studio space, and will keep your water cool for your long hours out. Add lemon slices, and berries into your drink and refill with cold water throughout the day. Life saver, I tell you. If you're anything like me, I tend to crave for coffee in the mornings and something zesty like lemonade or iced lemon tea in the lunchtime - and I don't like putting in anything sugary or caffeinated too often as well so I limit myself to one "fun" drink per day. Also, don't overdo drinking water, general rule of thumb is that if you're not feeling thirsty and your urine is colourless, you're good to go, that's enough water already. Be aware of your body! 

2. Face Mist

Drop by your local drugstore and find yourself a face mist to spritzy-spritz whenever you're feeling a little bit flushed. I would recommend the Caudalie Beauty Elixir, Eau Thermale Avene or the Evian Facial Spray. The Caudalie Beauty Elixir consists of peppermint extracts which gives a tingling cooling effect that you need on that torturous walk to lunch under the sun. A few sprays on the face and the back of the neck works wonders. The Avene facial spray is made out of 100% thermal spring water, as well as the Evian (100% Evian water) - I just find that these little bits and bobs really makes a difference when you need a quick freshening up, and works amazingly for sensitive skin in soothing redness or any flushes on the skin. You can even make your own concoction if you're feeling creative, the safest bet is to use rosewater because it doesn't irritate the skin too much in comparison to certain essential oils. 

3. Heat-Proof, Sweat-Proof Life 

I'll start by saying - skin first, makeup second. 

I don't like to put too much makeup on when it's really really hot because, let's be honest, s**t gets uncomfortable. I'll start with really clean skin and ditch the heavy creams for light-textured oils/moisturizers and a good sunblock. I use a physical sunblock that is packed with Vitamin E and antioxidants in place of my moisturiser, so that will provide ample moisturisation to last me the day. Physical sunscreens are great for dry, sensitive skin as it is very moisturising, often times the iS Clinical Eclipse SPF 50+ Broad Spectrum Creme is enough for me to skip moisturisers overall. You can opt for a chemical sunblock if you tend to get oily fast during the day because of it has a liquid-like formulation. Chemical sunscreens are great for normal skin types - not so great for sensitive skin. 

You can continue with a mattifying primer to tone town that shine on certain areas on your face. I use the littlest amount of my Hourglass Veil over the T-Zone and the under-eye area which is usually where I get shiny when I sweat. For coverage, I skip the foundation altogether because it's just not necessary! Pin-point concealing using a tiny Bobbi Brown eyeliner brush or a Real Techniques detailing brush with a thin layer of high coverage concealer is much more efficient and sweat-proof because it is much more waxier than a regular foundation - hence making it very long-lasting. After concealing, I use Benefit's Watts Up Cream Highlighter at the highest points of the face and really blend it in into the skin. I usually use my fingers for this, but the Real Techniques Buffing Brush is great too if you want the highlight to have a diffused look. Set places you've concealed with a thin layer of loose translucent powder, and carry a smaller powder compact, if you must. I use the Chanel  Natural Finish Loose Powder and I don't need to touch up during the day because it has a really long staying power which is what we need on a hot summer's day. I use the shade 20 Clair -Translucent 1. It comes with a velour puff which I don't really like because it doesn't compare to the Laura Mercier's Velour Puff which you can buy here

For blush and contouring, I like to stick to powder textures as it simply just lasts longer on the skin in comparison to creams. I normally go for The Balm's Bahama Mama Bronzing Powder for a touch of contouring on the cheekbones, and I use it wherever else needed (jawline, temples, forehead). As for blush, my summer's favourite is the one from Inglot which is an earthy mauve and just looks like you've got barely anything on (you can see the swatches here). I don't necessarily use blush on a daily basis, but just for when I feel that my skin feels a tad bit sallow. Other than that, I'll use a long lasting lip pencil (nude) like the Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil, or the Rimmel one in Tiramisu (both applied/swatched here and here) and top it off with either the Marc Jacobs New Nudes in Anais or the Inglot Matte Lipstick in 405. It really depends on how my lips are, if they are feeling a little bit dry, I prefer the Marc Jacobs - which lasts me through jungle-trekking and the bullet did not melt, I was genuinely pleased with that considering how moisturising the formula is.

4. Overnight Treats 

Your poor, parched skin is probably cursing you right now. Show that you're sorry with a good old overnight moisturising/hydrating treatment mask. I tend to opt for creams rather than sheet masks as you can really work the cream into the skin. Before applying the mask, don't forget to include a BHA/AHA ingredient as well to exfoliate any dead skin cells while the mask is acting. Take a good look at your skin to figure out what kinds of masks you may need. If there are any redness and bumps on your skin, it means that your skin is irritated and you would need to look for skin-calming masks. REN Skincare does a good range of products for sensitive skin, as well as La Roche Posay, you can either opt for a serum like REN's Evercalm Anti-Redness Serum or Sunday Riley's Artemis.

If you're not sure of the products or what will work - look out for ingredients. Vitamin E and Vitamin B is something to start with as Vitamin E strengthens the skin as well as brightens it while Vitamin B helps with protecting the skin from harsh weather (i.e. El Nino). I also tend to prefer to spot treat with ingredients like Salicylic Acids or Lactic Acid (I use Kiehl's Blemish Treatment on the daily). For moisture-retention, again, Lactic Acid is also a contributing ingredient for moisturising the skin, but I think the most common in the market and easy to scout for are Hyaluronic Acids, Retinoids (albeit a bit pricier) and Peptides which are also cell-communicating agents. For the ultimate overnight skin spa, I love Tata Harper's Moisturising Mask, but there are a lot of great skincare treatments out there and it doesn't have to be expensive. What I personally like to do before I make a purchase is to look for reviews on countless of blogs and websites. I find that I can count on Beautypedia to scrutinise every single ingredient in a product and making sure I'm getting my money's worth (and they feature tons of great drugstore products), or I'll go over Lisa Eldridge's website because she's been in the game - what am I saying - she is the game. 

5. No Mascara

Don't wear mascara. It'll still smudge. Just curl your lashes. 

(what summer looks like around here)

I find that being in the summer heat all year round has made me scout for more lightweight textures and long-lasting products - which, in the end, has resulted in a fail-proof routine (or a signature look, if you will). If you have to part with something from today's read, I'd say pick up a really good sunblock and an SPF-free moisturiser. It's important to take care of your skin! The combination of a humid and hot weather really could leave your skin parched so a good moisturiser is definitely something to think about. I'm gearing up for my site visit soon so let me know what your skincare/makeup essentials are in the comments section, I'd love to learn a few things from you! 

Lastly, keep at hand a trusty lip balm. You're gonna need it.


Monday, 4 January 2016

Late-Night Swatches : By Terry Rouge Terrybly

I promised myself that I'm never ever buying other lipsticks again. And technically, I think I'll be keeping my promise, because I'm never ever buying other lipsticks again. I am hooked. These Rouge Terrybly lipsticks are amazing. I've read reviews claiming that the By Terry lipsticks were favoured over the Tom Fords, and I must say I was skeptical at first, but now I do believe that it is true. They are the best lipsticks that I have ever tried - and believe me, I have tried a lot.

The Rouge Terrybly claims to be an age-defense lipstick and a nutri-replenishing, high-color, hydra-volumiser lipstick with the brand exclusive LUMILIP ® TECHNOLOGY. There's not too many age-defense lipstick on the market now. We have a lot from the luxury leagues like Laura Mercier, Chantecaille, Clarins and Diego Dalla Palma to name a few but the Rouge Terrybly line really delivers their claim. It is pigmented, it is super comfortable and the Telegraph has said "it is a pamper session in a tube". Well is it? Yes it is.

When you purchase By Terry from KEN'S Apothecary, you receive a different packaging than their standard KEN'S bags, as shown. Online, the Rouge Terrybly comes with a velvet pouch but I have a feeling that is has been discontinued, or it's simply not carried in Malaysia. I'm not complaining because on Space NK this retails around MYR209++ but you can get your hands on the Rouge Terryblys for MYR199 here in KL which I find terrybly peculiar to why it is slightly more expensive on Space NK.

Either way, By Terry isn't cheap, there's no other way to go about it. But the quality of their products are amazing. In-store, I took the chance to try their Cellulose Brightening CC Lumi Serum in Immaculate Light and oh my god does that knock my Hourglass Veil out of the park. The texture is so smooth and my skin felt super soft and looked brighter due to the tiny reflexes in the product. It is such a beautiful product. I have to say that the By Terry range would not disappoint and it's something worth splurging on.

Onto the lipstick.

I picked up the shade No.100 Terrybly Nude out of their selection of 13 colours. They have three (or four) other nude shades in this range - 101 Flirty Rose, 401 Guilty Nude, 103 Plumping Nude and 403 Bare Instinct. The packaging of this lipstick is detailed into perfection. The casing is a clean, sleek, weighted silver tube with By Terry engraved on the top, and a criss-cross shaped of the By Terry logo lasered on the lipstick tube. Of course it has the magnetic closure that all high-end lipsticks are doing now. The lipstick bullet is a perfectly-sized bullet, engraved with Terrybly on one side (so that when I touch up my lipstick, it will look fabulous as hell). Hahahaha. I really do enjoy the little details in any luxury makeup, I mean, that's what we are paying for am I right?

Other than that, I repurchased one of my lip liner essentials - the By Terry Crayon Contour Levres Terrybly in No.1 Perfect Nude. It isn't an automatic lip liner, which is something I prefer tbh, and it comes with its' own sharpener.- this lip liner retails at MYR129. The By Terry lip liners contain jojoba oil and natural antioxidants which is why it has just enough slip to glide on the lips while still having that waxy texture for a more long-lasting wear-time. I should say that this do lasts throughout a couple of meals without the need of reapplying. You can use this as an all-over lip colour which is usually what I do, and if so, I would have to touch up a little bit on the centre of my lips. I have another of these in the shade Wine Delight. And I believe that there are 6 or 8 more shades available for the lip liners.

L to R : Crayon Contour in Wine Delight, Crayon Contour in Perfect Nude, Rouge Terrybly in No.100 Terrybly Nude

Colour :

No.100 Terrybly Nude definitely swatches more pink that the bullet looks, which is more of a neutral nude. It has fine shimmers within the product which is only noticeable when you look really closely (both on the bullet and the swatches). The shimmer is not too in-your-face, actually, it leaves the lips looking plump and healthy - giving it a low-key volumizing effect. The colour of the lipstick transforms yet again when it is being applied onto the lips. It has the most beautiful neutral, natural tones to it when it touches the lips. I should say that my lips are so pigmented that it may have mellowed down the pink tones from the lipsticks, and brought out more of the beige/brown tones of the lipstick.

Texture & Finish :

Terrybly Nude did exceed my expectations as it was certainly the perfect, classic nude I was searching for on my skin-tone. I feel that it transforms itself with the natural colouring of your lips which in turn will become a nude that is tailored to you. Which is what we all been looking for in a nude lipstick. The finish of the lipstick is a satin-matte, and it gives a full-on opaque coverage, which may be a good thing for dark pigmented lips. I still do line my lips with the By Terry liners to avoid patchy-looking application, but if you don't have pigmented lips, that wouldn't be necessary to wear this nude. It does not emphasise on any dry patches on the lips but I suggest that you exfoliate well before applying because it wouldn't look as perfect as it could be.

Application & Wear-time :

The ingredient content of this lipsticks include a blend of emollients and silicones which just means this glides on like buttaaah. It has a smooth application, without any patchiness and feels ultra comfortable on your lips. During the first 2-3 hours of wearing this lipstick, it feels very buttery and rich but after a point, it doesn't feel as balmy, which gives this lipstick a modern feel to it. I don't really like the old-fashioned creamy rich texture just because it's super hot in Kuala Lumpur, and it does feel a little bit heavy at first, but for colder climates, I think the moisture that the lipstick departs is one of the selling points of the product (dry winter lips, sounds familiar?). 

Having said that, the lipstick has quite a long staying power, lasts me throughout the day and only needs reapplication after a generous helping of rice and kung po chicken. I don't mind reapplying the lipstick (or any lipsticks to be honest) because it's one of those things that I find oddly pleasant to do. Not many people share this opinion but hey, you do you. 

Applied with By Terry Crayon Contour Terrybly in Perfect Nude 

Applied with Bobbi Brown's lip pencil in Natural

I've tried No.100 Terrybly Nude using two different liners, one with the By Terry and another with the Bobbi Brown - both have quite a similar nude shade, but slightly different textures. My lips were definitely drier in the second photo (with the Bobbi Brown liner) as I was having lip ulcers during the week, not because of the liner. So, it's really advisable to do quite thorough exfoliation so that any obvious super dry patches doesn't show through. It definitely is forgiving on minor dry patches. The colour does seem a little bit greige with the By Terry liner in cooler lighting (the first photo) and looks softer on the skin in warm lighting. I love it but I'm constantly battling to wear it or not because I'll be so sad when this runs out. 

Below are swatches of Terrybly Nude and a few of the nude lipsticks in my little collection. Any other person might say "it looks the same" but if you're a lipstick fiend like me, you know that it ain't. Swatches from L to R :

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in 130 Rose Velvet (creme)
Inglot Matte Lipstick in 405
Revlon Matte Balms in 230 Complex
Maybelline Bold Matte Lipstick in MAT7
By Terry Rouge Terrybly in No.100 Terrybly Nude
Marc Jacobs New Nudes in Anais
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in 003 Mauve It Over (matte)

(let me know if you want a review on these lippies in the comments :D )

Swatches in daylight (warm) 

Swatches indoors (leans cool)

By Terry do have a few other cult-status lip products other than the Rouge Terryblys - the Baume de Rose, Rouge Terrybly Shimmers, Hyaluronic Sheer Rouge, Hyaluronic Sheer Hydra-Balm, and the Terrybly Velvet Rouges. I suppose all of the products do carry their signature rose scent, which smells gorgeous. In my opinion it's particularly pleasant for face products, but too overwhelming for a lipstick because it leaves a slight taste when you first apply it. It's not unbearable - Givenchy and Dior has a similar rose-scent to their lip products as well. I think that the next product that I will try is their CC Lumi Serum once my Hourglass primer runs out, or perhaps even sooner than that.. 

In a nutshell, By Terry is truly one of the finest skincare/makeup line in the high-end division that is consistent with the formulations and quality of their products. If you're in the mood to splurge, head to their counters, try absolutely anything and be prepared to be amazed. In KL, you can find this at KENS Apothecary BSC, as well as the Bangsar Village II flagship. Otherwise, if you're in the UK, By Terry is available at Space NK Apothecary (they are having a sale for the By Terry lipsticks and other amazing products, you can get them for £16.75 or MYR106 apiece). Other than that,  Space NKMECCA, and Net-A-Porter are some of the stores that carries By Terry. Happy discovering and let me know if you too fell -

Terrybly in love ;)


Products mentioned -

By Terry Rouge Terrybly Age Defense Lipstick in No.100 Terrybly Nude MYR199
By Terry Crayon Contour Terrybly Perfect Lip Liner in No.1 Perfect Nude MYR129
By Terry Crayon Contour Terrybly Perfect Lip Liner in No.8 Wine Delight MYR129