Wednesday, 23 September 2015

REVIEW: So...? Fragrance with Attitude

What comes to mind when you hear and see So...? With Attitude fragrance? For me, nostalgic memories and jasmine.



Rewind all the way back to the 80s. A blast from the past. Whilst in high school I remember almost every girl had a So...? body spray in their backpacks, remnants of the scent lingering in the school hallways and classrooms.

Fragrances and body sprays come and go, but for a brand to still be around for more than two decades, says a lot about a fragrance.

Recently re-acquainting myself with the body fragrance and eau de toilette I was pleasantly surprised how refreshing the fragrance is.  Personally, I don't recall it being so sweet but then again it has been a long time since I used this fragrance.

With top notes of tangerine and orange flower, and middle notes of rose, ylang ylang and jasmine, which blends deliciously with a creamy base of vanilla, sandalwood and amber. 


So...? What's the difference between the body spray and eau de toilette?

The body spray is a lighter fragrance, where topping up whenever you want throughout the day to freshen up or as I sometimes use it for, refreshing stinky train carriages.  the scent doesn't last all day which is why you can never overdose yourself with the body spray.


The fragrance is more concentrated than the body spray, use once in the morning and the fragrance is longer lasting.  When using the two together it enhances the fragrance as well prolongs the scent on the body.

Generally, I change my fragrances per season.  So...? has an extensive range of fragrances and body sprays to suit each season.

What's great is that they are inexpensive and perfect for every budget.  So..? products are sold at Priceline and Big W Australia wide.  Prices starts at $4.95.


To find a stockists go to their website at www.au.sowithattitude.com

Friday, 18 September 2015

PERSONAL: WOMANHOOD DEALING WITH LIFE CHANGES

I'm not one to share personal stories or issues, but I think it is very important in this instance because there needs to be more discussions on this subject.


I've been a little quiet on the blogging front of late.  I've had some personal issues and decisions to deal with that preoccupied my mind, pushing blogging as far away possible.

It has been several weeks and I am finally coming to terms and acceptance.  I've been given the news that I need to have a partial hysterectomy.  I'm only 40 years old and I was told that surgery is usually performed in women in their 50s and older. 

With my first surgery and diagnosis at 19, I thought I was cured.  Ignorant, yes.  Hopeful, yes.  

I've always suffered from excessive bleeding lasting up to 9 days with excruciating pain.  I used to miss school each month because my inability to walk due to pain, with symptoms like migraines, nausea, focal migraines, leg, back and vaginal cramping.  As the years went by you learn pain management, then it becomes part of your life and you accept it, thinking of it 'as normal'.

I was first diagnosed with Endometriosis at the age of 19.  I didn't understand the consequences or reason, I just accepted it.  I was told I had very little chance of falling pregnant if not at all.  I was ok with that because really, I wasn't interested in falling pregnant, let alone doing all that traditional stuff.  I had plans, I wanted to travel, be independent and live life!

I met my husband a few years later and I was very clear about my situation, thankfully he was OK with a future with no children.

With regular visits to the gynae, several curettes and experimenting with different types of pills and drugs to reduce the severity of pain and duration of my period as well as regular scans to monitor my uterus and ovaries nothing was improving the symptoms.

With the internet providing more knowledge of Endometriosis, I was able to be educate myself on my condition as well as finding ways to improve my quality of life including ways to minimise my pain.

I started by seeing an Endocrinologist.  It was the best thing I ever did.  Within 9 months of seeing her I fell pregnant with my son, who is now 8 years old.

I never went to my specialist to improve my chances of falling pregnant, far from it.  I needed answers and a possible solution to my condition.  She turned my life around, discovering I had a hormone imbalance and treating it made me have a whole new lease on life.  She didn't cure me, she acknowledged the problem, treated it and in turn minimised the symptoms.

Being pregnant definitely was a challenge.  With my mind mentally unprepared for it as well as my exciting plans for the future, I was struggling with my emotions as it was the first time in my life i didn't know what to do. Throughout the pregnancy I was excited, intrigued, angry, scared and confused until the day my son was born, my anxiety disappeared.

Fast forward to today, with continuous period pains (not as severe as my younger years) and menstruating every fortnight, I find that I am no longer resilient to constant pain and bleeding.  

So, last month I got the results of my latest scan, revealing I have Adenomyosis.  Leaving the Endometriosis clinic numb and feeling confused.  I went home and dealt with it the only way I know, researching Adenomyosis and take control and not allowing it to control me.

Adenomyosis is a condition in which the inner lining of the uterus (the endometrium) breaks through the muscle wall of the uterus. Causing menstrual cramps, lower abdominal pressure, and bloating before menstrual periods and can result in heavy periods. The condition can be located throughout the entire uterus or localised in one spot.  The older you get the worse the pain.

I consider myself quite lucky.  Even though I have gone through years of pain and bleeding and now about to lose my womanhood, I still have my general health and life. It's a condition you have to be positive about because it can eat you up with sadness. I don't like to dwell on sadness and I dislike the 'poor me' persona.  It may be a control issue, that's ok because you shouldn't let any type of illness to control you because you will never win.  It is always important to be positive.

Monday, 14 September 2015

EVENT: Transformulas Marine Miracle Launch


Last week I attended an intimate gathering upon the Ghost Super Yacht at Rose Bay to celebrate the launch of Transformulas new Marine Miracle collection. With a Champagne breakfast to indulge on, it was the perfect setting to learn all about the new offerings from Transformulas founder, Rosalind Chapman.

The new range of products were exclusively developed in response to the success of the popular Marine Miracle Crème released earlier this year, which marked the kick start of the Collection for Transformulas.

Marine Miracle Night Repair Serum
A concentrated night serum for anti-aging and deep hydration. This serum is infused with vitamin C and E formulated to improve skin elasticity, radiance and density whilst also containing rich marine sugars to combat wrinkles.

RRP $69

Marine Miracle Eye Zone
An anti-aging eye cream specially developed for the delicate eye tissue area to reduce dark circles, wrinkles, fine lines and puffiness. Eye Zone contains a highly concentrated ingredient Aldavine, which contains two unique marine algae giving the cream its anti-aging benefits.

RRP $49

This treatment has been exclusively developed for the delicate eye area. Through natural ageing or secondary ageing, it provides extra help to stimulate, strengthen, repair, and encourage firmness and radiance around your delicate eye area.


Marine Miracle Glycol Cleanser
The ultimate skin prep, this mild foaming cleansing gel containing Glycol Acid, removes makeup, dirt and sebum without stripping skin while retaining natural pH levels and exfoliating dead skin cells.

Contains Lactic and Glycolic Acid derived from fruit and milk sugars which act as a natural exfoliant. 

RRP $35

The relaxing cruise around the harbour had to come to an end and off to work I went.

For more information on these products visit www.transformulas.com.

Friday, 11 September 2015

HOW TO: REAL TECHNIQUES BOLD METALS COLLECTION and HOW-TO VIDEO



I'm no MUA, but I love and am obsessed with makeup. I have a drawer full of lippies, mascaras, eye shadow, blushes, bronzers etc. When applying makeup I always try to copy a look.  For example, the smokey eye. I attempt, fail and try again but it all boils down to the quality of the brushes I use.

I've always struggled with knowing which brush is for what, even though many of them had names on them, after time the writing does fade and then I forget.

After discovering Real Techniques it was clear that I had to cull my ridiculously large brush collection down to a handful by tossing all the ones that they were working against me, which were 90% of them!

The Bold Metals Collection is a new range of brushes that have been added to their range. The softness and quality of these brushes are unbelievable. With their striking sleek metallic detailed handles, they scream style and luxe. The handles are weighted for optimal control and comfort.

Designed by internationally renowned professional makeup artists and beauty vloggers, Sam and Nic Chapman, the new luxury makeup brushes are available in the sleek metallic gold, rose gold and silver colours.

Real Techniques have cleverly simplified their range by colour-coding their brushes to correspond to the key steps of make-up application:
Gold = Base
Platinum = Eye
Rose Gold = Finish

The two brushes I am reviewing are the 300 Tapered Blush Brush and 201 Pointed Crease Brush.




300 - Tapered blush brush
The tapered blush brush has an expert designed bristle shape which provides focused application of cheek colour. Be light handed when applying blush use less product.


Due to the dense bristles, it picks up a lot of colour. the bristles are perfectly spaced for an air-brushed, buildable application. Giving you a more professional look.

The tapered blush brush is not only good for blushing those cheeks it is also suitable for contouring and finishing powders

The brush fits ergonomically well in my hands allowing me to manoeuvre the brush easily.


201 Pointed Crease Brush
I call it the eye shadow brush.  As you can see from my collection, this is the fanciest one I own!



Densely packed, tapered soft bristles make applying eye shadow for smokey effect seem achievable.




When picking up colour, the same technique applies.  Only apply lightly and build from there.  Due to the dense bristles the colour grabs onto the brush really easily.  You pick up the product with tip, and then the rounded sides blend out the product seamlessly. 



So what makes Bold Metal Collections different from others? The biggest difference lies in the density of the bristles. The bristles on the brushes are tightly packed giving you a more effective and even application and distribution of product.

The bristles on these brushes are all synthetic which is what I prefer. Cleaning them is a breeze.  I have only been using these brushes for around a month now and I haven't noticed and shedding yet which is a good sign.

I do love the design of these brushes.  It does add a more luxe feel to my make-up collection.  I will definitely be adding more to my collection by heading to my local Priceline and stocking up.

Overall I am very impressed with the quality, design and looks of these brushes. They are incredibly well-made and affordable as well.

If you want to learn some tips and tricks check out this tutorial from beauty expert, Rachael Brook, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hemIYlVAN4I




In line with existing Real Techniques collections, the brushes are colour-coded by area of application:

GOLD – BASE
100 Arched Powder – The domed cut of this divine brush sweeps perfectly across the face for flawless application of pressed or loose powders. RRP: $65.
101 Triangle Foundation – A dual function makeup brush, which includes a flat edge to cover large areas of the face and angled edges for contouring around the eyes and nose. RRP: $59.

SILVER – EYES
200 Oval Shadow – A full, round shaped eye brush allowing for all-over lid application and seamless blending. RRP: $39.
201 Pointed Crease – The ultimate smoky eye tool, this brush has densely packed, tapered bristles to apply eye shadow for a smoky effect. RRP: $39.
202 Angled Liner – A must-have eye makeup tool, the firm, slanted head of this brush fits close to lash line for the smooth, even application of eyeliner. RRP: $39.

ROSE GOLD – FINISH
300 Tapered Blush – Essential for detailed makeup application, the specially designed tip of this brush highlights and sculpts across cheeks for a seamless finish. RRP: $59.
301 Flat Contour – Designed to create contours, this brush features a dense and narrow shaped head to shadow and highlight targeted areas and play-up features perfectly. RRP: $65.


What brushes do you have in your collection?  Have you used Real Techniques, what do you think of them?


Bold Metals Collection™ is available in Priceline stores nationally and online exclusively at www.realtechniques.com.au

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

EVENT: BEAUTY EXPO 2015

Two weekends ago I attended the Beauty Expo. Beauty Expo Australia is the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. It is my third year visiting and I don't tire exploring. It was again at Glebe Island exhibition centre.

This year I did not see all the same exhibitors as the last two years. Last year there was a lot more focus on nails, nail colours, nail printing, gels and shellac. This year there was more focus on fake tan and lashes.

The day was jammed pack with lots to see and do including plenty of workshops running throughout the day.

Starting off with some eye candy. A nice change to see men getting a spray tan. There were several brand demonstrations around the exhibition showcasing their products and techniques.



Technique demonstration on stage.



Make-up brand like Inglot appeared for the first time this year which was super exciting.  With an array of colours to choose from it was like a gigantic rainbow palette.


























Same for the lashes, an array of colours, shapes and styles to choose from.  I really loved this display of lashes. They are so much fun.




























This year Janeke made an appearance again.  They produce really cool hair tools like colourful hair brushes and combs.  This year I saw more of a classic quilted look.  



Janeke also have other combs and brushes made from other materials ranging from wood, chrome, genuine horn and carbon fibre. There are a variety of styles, patterns.

The gang from Celebrity Apprentice were entertaining the crowd. Celebrity Sophie Monk demonstrating Camera Ready looks as well as top beauty secret tips and tricks.






























Matt Cooper and  Mel Greig getting dirty on stage.


It was great to see Miss Universe talk to us about business success strategies.



Body Sugaring was a new thing I learnt on the day.


Body sugaring is a new smoother method making it as fast as waxing if not faster and virtually pain-free. I didn't see this lady flinch once.

My highlight was trying out the new and improved technology in the way microdermabrasion is done.

It is called Liquid Facial Exfoliation or Liquid dermabrasion. I was a little apprehensive at first as I know how invasive Diamond and Crystal dermabrasion are but with some reassurance I decided to  give it a go.


Liquid Facial is natural abrasion-free treatment. Powered by an industrial grade suction pump, through the controlled vacuum pressure, skin is gently pulled into the chamber, allowing the solutions to unclog and gently cleanse pores, exfoliate dead skin cells and extract keratin, sebum, blackheads and other impurities. Simultaneously, the vortex spiral shaped tip drives the solutions deep into the skin.



I was surprised how relaxing the treatment felt.  After treatment my skin was a little pink afterwards. Like all treatments you need to have several to see some kind of a result.  It has definitely impressed me.  This is a treatment I will look out for when it is released in salons.

There were a few more pit stops before I called it a day.  Made a few purchases and I was content.

Stopped by Blinc stand, purchased a couple of mascara's and ogled at their new contour palette.


Picked up a couple of boxes of Baby Foot.  I've never tried this brand before.  I have used Milky Foot so review will be up in the near future.


A sample pack of Eye Slices.  Cool as a cucumber, aids in reducing swelling and tired eyes.  Just what I needed after a long day at the expo.


If you missed out going this year, make sure you register on Beauty Expo website to be informed for the 2016 expo.


Most photographs are courtesy of Oneill Photographics

REVIEW: THE BODY SHOP TEA TREE SKIN SAVIOUR

Natural and organic products are definitely making a name for themselves in today's market unlike years ago when even though they were natural it did very little for the skin.

The Body Shop is celebrating 20 years since they launched the Tea Tree Oil.  To celebrate The Body Shop has released a limited edition jumbo range of it's three best selling Tea Tree products, available in store now.

I will be reviewing three Tea Tree products from the Body Shop Range and letting you know what I think.


Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is well-known for its powerful anti-bacterial properties. The Body Shop’s Tea Tree Oil is sourced from the foothills of Mount Kenya, a Community Fair Trade partner, where their farmers hand-harvest the leaves and steam-distill them within 12 hours for the purest, most potent tea tree oil.

With my skin rebelling the last few months gifting me pimples on the forehead and chin area.  My pimples are like blind ones where the lumps appear but no puss.

Tea Tree Oil 20ml RRP $16.95

The scent is medium strength and pleasant. I applied the oil on my forehead.  I used it in the morning and evening for over a whole week.  Unfortunately for me it did little to reduce or prevent my pimples.  It has however, calmed the redness on my skin where there are pimples so for me that is great.

As the oil is pure you only need a couple of drops to treat the areas and it isn't oily. The Tea Tree oil will last you a long time.

Alternatively if you want to treat the whole face and you don't want to put the oil directly to your skin you can give yourself a steam facial. Fill up a bowl or pot with very hot water. Add a few drops in the water, put a towel over your head and pot and let the steam do it's job.

Remember to close your eyes and relax, or they will sting!  Not only will it cleanse the skin and pores but also kill any bacteria that is nestled in the pores.

Image from goodsmiths.com























Remain in this position for about five to ten minutes. Come away earlier if you feel it's too much.

Tea tree oil does have its benefits and will take some time to clear up acne but what makes it different from other acne treatment products is that they have very little to no side effects after applying it.


Tea Tree Skin Clearing Toner
This innovative 'shake to activate' toner removes traces of cleanser, make-up and impurities with triple blend of natural active ingredients such as tea tree oil, tamanu oil and white willow extract to leave the skin clean and refreshed whilst helping to prevent blemishes. 

Skin Clearing Toner 400ml RRP $22.95

To apply use with cotton wool pads. Saturate a cotton wool pad and sweep across a cleansed face and neck.  I did find my skin a little tight after use. I think this product will be more suited to my skin in Summer when my skin is oilier.



I noticed that this toner lists alcohol as the second ingredient  I have combination skin where my cheeks are normal-dry and my t-zone can get oily especially during the warmer months, so I tend to stay away from alcohol based toners.  I have mixed feelings about this one.


Tea Tree Skin Clearing Foaming Cleanser
It is definitely a refreshing foaming cleanser and it does effectively cleanse and didn't leave my skin taut.  It removed all my make-up really well leaving no residue behind.  I really like this cleanser, just enough foam to be effective without it being soapy.


I love the liquid pump turn foam cleanser.  I prefer it like this than the ones you squeeze out of a tube.

Foaming Cleanser RRP $17.95

Overall, I think the Tea Tree collection is great but more suited to oilier skin.  I love the Tea Tree smell and the packaging.  I wouldn't recommend it if you have dry skin, but always remember to test patch any new products you try.


To find out more about the Tea Tree range  visit www.thebodyshop.com.au or go in store.

These products were provided for my consideration