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REVIEW/SHOPPING ► Face Masks and Promises

New Chantelle Face Masks! To the left is the Dead Sea Mineral Mud Mask, and to the right is Cucumber & Apple Reviving Face Mask.

These were in Müller for €0.95 or something. The packs are two separate masks, and after the My Beauty Diary one, I wanted to try something new out. They were pretty cheap in comparison to other masks available, especially as you get two per packet.  It’s definitely the least I’ve spent while in there!

I tried out the Dead Sea Mask, which they claim to be cleansing.  If nothing else, it’s certainly refreshing. It gives a nice minty tingle when breezes hit.  As for smell, it smells gorgeous too! Soapy and clean.  If you don’t like scents, however, this probably isn’t a good purchase. It’s quite strong.

Applying it was easy, and I think the clay mask was easier to apply than a paper mask (and more liquid than my BB cream, to be honest!) The mask should be left on for 10 to 15 minutes.  It works like any clay mask, dries on and is washed off.  Washing it off is pretty easy, I just splashed my face with lukewarm water.  Overall, nothing particularly notable in application or removal.

Effects: I would say my skin felt softer and cleaner, possibly just a bit softer than when I cleanse my face normally.

Overall: 4/5 For the price, I really like this mask. The only thing that seemed strange to me was how scented it was, even though it was a pretty scent.

Now, shopping!  Or the lack thereof.
A couple of days ago, I checked my bank balance and nearly threw up at how much I’ve been spending. I knew I shopped a lot, but I didn’t really realise the gravity of it until now.  Since I’m entering my last year of university, I really need to make sure my bank balance is in the black before I graduate, or I’ll have to start paying interest fees for being in my overdraft.  (And worse, I won’t be able to close my account and emigrate!)
The idea was first planted in my head by this wonderful entry from HanaLovely. But it only really became urgent after I saw my balance.  I always tell myself I love the challenge of finding new ways to create looks with what I have, but I also constantly become attracted to anything pretty and find myself going “OH IT WOULD BE PERFECT WITH THAT AND THAT…” and my wardrobe just gets bigger.  So, I’m setting myself a challenge to not spend any more money on clothing, shoes, or cosmetics until I return home and get a job.  I have a lot of trips planned before I leave Germany, but they all end up bogged down in shopping, which is unfortunate.

I don’t know how it will go, but I hope successfully! There is plenty of time left to buy all the things. ;D


HAUL/SWATCHES/REVIEW ► all the things

I’ll quickly start off with two of my new favourite additions from H&M!  A leather-look tassel bag, which holds a lot more than my boyfriend expected it to has quickly become my default bag for any day out – provided I don’t have a load of files to carry to uni. The blue crochet ballet pumps were also an unexpected Godsend, for €12,95/£9.99, they are just so comfortable!  I’m actually seriously considering getting them in black and white as well.  They’re perfect when the day is warm, because they’re so much cooler than my rubber shoes or chunky boots.

My new makeup! I… didn’t intend to buy all of this, I swear. /sob. From Max Factor, I bought their Miracle Touch Liquid Feel Foundation in Warm Almond, mostly because I was really impressed with how well it blended into my skin when I swatched it in store. I wasn’t expecting that, because my skin tone usually ends up being between-shades.  The Two lipsticks are English Rose (pink) and Orange Shine (no prizes for guessing). I also bought a coral blush from Rimmel, because a) I’m on the coral/orange blush train since I tried the orange blush from Art Deco, and b) because I wanted a less intense blush and it fitted.  Lastly, I bought an eyeshadow palette from Rimmel as well.  It’s a very light, natural looking palette- cream, pale pink and a brown/purple (I didn’t realise it was purple until I swatched it today!)

Finally! My PinkyParadise order was ready to pick up at customs. I had such trouble getting it, but I don’t want to bore you with the details.  Suffice to say, I’m just glad it’s over.

From left to right: Candy Doll Lipgloss in Milk Tea Beige, My Beauty Diary Phalaenopsis Facial Mask, and Skin79’s Super BB Triple Functions (Hot Pink).

Now, onto the swatches!

All the lip products I have in Germany (excluding lip balm): L→R
Candy Doll Lipgloss (Milk Tea Beige); Max Factor Lipstick (English Rose); Max Factor Lipstick (Orange Shine); M.A.C Viva Glam (Lady Gaga #2); M.A.C Viva Glam (Cyndi Lauper); Dior Addict (Miss Dior); Art Deco Lipgloss (#56)

Swatches are in the same order.
I have to say, I was surprised by how pigmented the Candy Doll Lipgloss was. Unfortunately, because it’s so pigmented and shiny, it is really sticky and thick. I dislike lipglosses for exactly this reason, but I will prevail over it, because it’s just so pretty!

Lip Swatch
And I swear the Gaga #2 and Miss Dior are there. They’re both very pale (Gaga) or natural looking (Dior) lipsticks, so they’re hard to see with the crappy lighting quality in my room.
Yes, I only own three blushers (at least, that I took to Germany). Models Own (Cheeky Pink), Art Deco (#11) and Rimmel (Coral).
Coral → #11 → Cheeky Pink
As you can see, Coral’s the palest. My favourite is Cheeky Pink, despite my current Coral/Orange blush love. Pink works better with my skintone, and of the three, I think it’s best for building up, so I can control the amount better.
Foundations and Powders!
Clockwise from top left: Skin79 Super BB Triple Functions; Max Factor Liquid Feel (Warm Almond), Rimmel Clear Complexion Powder (Translucent); Shu Uemura Face Architect (#564).
Shu Uemura → Max Factor → Rimmel → Skin79
They all look different shades. It’s very strange. I’ve used Shu Uemura the longest, but the pump tends to stick now and well, that’s annoying.  Max Factor’s is nice and cooling, but it has a weird, powdery scent when applied that makes me sneeze. I’m not sure if it’s the foundation or the sponge.
Eyeshadows: BeneFit Big Beautiful Eyes; Rimmel Glam Eyes (#720, Dreamy); M.A.C Custom Palette (The only shades I remember the names of are Cranberry and Black Tie…)
I don’t have much to say about these, other than I accidentally managed to pick up exactly the right “recommended” palette for my eyes when I bought the Rimmel eyeshadow. (Also, they provide recommendations for how to complete the look and style your eyeshadow, which is awesome.)
Onto the Review!
I’ll just do the product reviews for the BB cream and the mask, since I essentially covered the lipgloss in the swatch.
My Beauty Diary Phalaenopsis Facial Mask: 3/5
While the product smelled lovely and made my skin feel softer, I don’t think it lived up to the promises it made about whitening my skin (evening out my skin tone), which was disappointing. I also found it fiddly to work with, as it wasn’t a typical clay mask, instead it was a soft papery mask soaked in the formula.  Because of this, it dripped and moved about quite a lot.  I also found that the mouth hole in particular didn’t match up to my face.  I’m not sure if this is because the mask was originally developed for the Asian market or not.
Overall, I certainly wouldn’t buy this product alone, since I would have to pay for shipping on top of the £1.69.  But at the same time, it hasn’t completely spoiled my experiences of these types of facial masks, so I would say it was an average product.
Skin79 Super BB Triple Functions (Hot Pink): 4/5
This BB Cream promises Whitening, UV Protection (25+++) and Anti-Aging capabilities.  What I found was a product that’s managed to solidify my interest in BB creams.  I haven’t noticed anything for the UV protection, but it’s been quite dull here since I bought the cream, so I haven’t had a chance to find out.  (As for the anti-aging, I think I’m a bit young to tell!)
Otherwise, I love this product.  It does even out my skin tone, and makes me feel more confident when wearing more natural make up. My only problem with it is that it leaves my skin a little shiny, so I need to go over it with powder quickly, but that’s not a big problem.  It blends into my skin tone well, I think, which was a relief, as I’ve heard a lot about BB Creams not suiting western skin tones.
It does have a strange texture though. I can only really compare it to a clay mask, which makes it a bit awkward to blend, but I’m getting used to it.
Just the BB Cream on.  (Ignore my hair dear loooord.)
With added mascara, powder and lipgloss. So much less than what I used to wear!
I’m attempting to wear less make-up on a daily basis, mostly because I feel horrendously out of place in Germany, where lots of make-up isn’t common even when you’re going out. (Neither are heels or bothering to change into something more dressy; it’s kind of my idea of Hell, really.)  Also, wear less make-up = spend less money = don’t be horrendously broke. Of course, it being better for your skin and taking less time is another advantage.
Next Entry: Me Trying To Curb Spending Habits. This will be fun.

GIVEAWAY ► Eki’s Domo-kun giveaway!

For a chance to win all of this, enter here!

REVIEW ► Art Deco Haul

My latest haul from Art Deco.
Clockwise from top: Art Deco False Eyelashes, Art Deco Luminating Concealer in #7, Art Deco Glamour Gloss in #56, Art Deco Blusher in #11
Blusher and Glamour Gloss close-ups without flash.
1. Glamour Gloss in #56
I almost never wear gloss, just because I dislike how sticky it is. I generally prefer lip balm and moisturising lip sticks.  Unfortunately, this gloss doesn’t change my mind.  It smells very pretty, and I do like the colour, which is nice and natural.  But oh boy is it sticky.  I’m trying to continue using it, just to see if I get more used to the texture, but it doesn’t look good. (Especially as I just bought Dior Addict lipstick!)
Rating: 3/5
2. Blusher in #11
I have wanted orange blusher for so long! But I’ve been rather terrified of looking stupid with it on.  This blusher changed my mind entirely.  Though I need to learn to apply less blusher than I normally do when I wear pink blusher, the colour is really cute, and builds up well.
Rating: 5/5
3. Luminating Concealer in #7
I am so terrible at remembering to buy concealer.  I finally decided to buy myself some well overdue concealer during this haul, and I’m quite glad I did.  Just twist and concealer is pushed up onto the brush.  Very simple, but it does run the risk of overloading with concealer if you’re not used to it.  Which is what I did.  I also think I might have needed a lighter colour, as it can darken when it dries.
Rating: 4/5
Wearing: Art Deco Make Up, BeneFit’s Bad Gal Mascara, MAC eyeshadow in Black Tie (as eyeliner), Shu Uemura Face Architect Foundation, and Seeshell Cosmo Circle Lenses in Aqua. 


Date ordered: 1st May
Date received: 6th May
Expected delivery time: 5-7 days [to Germany]
Delivery Service: DPD to Europe, HDNL to UK.
Where do they deliver?: UK, selected European countries. [see Deliveries section for more details]
Exceptions: Jersey and Guernsey.
Payment Options: Visa, Mastercard, Visa Delta, Visa Electron, Maestro, Solo, Paypal.
Special Offers: Create an account using a student address [ only] and receive 10% discount when shopping online.
Delivery Charge?: UK: £2.99 for standard, £3.99 for next day. Delivery free on all orders over £100
Europe: varies from region to region. Specifics can be found in the delivery section at the bottom of the site.

Website Layout – 4.5/5
The website is easy to navigate and clear.  You have the option to see up to 100 items per page and there are several menus, allowing you to choose from Gender >>> Clothing Type, Special Offers, and Brands (which are also divided into genders).
My only nitpick is that the dropdown menus only open when they’re rolled over, and can’t stay open via clicking the mouse.
Bonus Point: The Social Section
Sizes Offered – 3.5/5
Republic stocks sizes with the same variety of most high street shops in the UK, varying from a size 6 to a size 16, depending on the brand.  Unfortunately, they don’t have a “plus size” section.

Customer Service – 4/5
Emails are sent out for registration and order confirmation, like any site. A tracking number should be provided with your order confirmation email.  Unfortunately for me it wasn’t, which is why I’ve knocked the point off.  In this case, you will have to contact customer services.  Their staff were polite and apologetic in their email, although I had to wait over a day to hear back.  However, I wouldn’t let this deter me from ordering online in the future, and overall I was pleased with the service.

Delivery – 5/5
This was DPD’s responsibility, but as it’s part of the whole ordering process, it’s necessary.  The package turned up on Friday evening, five days after I placed my order.  I was impressed, as that was the minimum amount of time it was supposed to take, and it was also a Bank Holiday weekend in the UK at that time.
On Republic’s side of things, all the products were in perfect condition, the correct size and style.

Overall: 17/20
Would I order again?: Certainly.

REVIEW ► Garnier Movida Semi-Permanent Hair Dye in #13 [Noisette]

Due to factors like cost and hair health, I decided to temporarily stop bleaching and dying my hair with Directions hair colour.  It was a sad day, but it needed to be done.  Instead, I purchased a box of Garnier Movida hair dye.

The box promises six to eight weeks of colour in fifteen minutes, and a smell of apricot.  I can say that they certainly didn’t skimp on the scent.  Apricot could be smelled as soon as I opened the box, even on the instructions.

The box contains:
1. Instruction booklet
2. Gloves
3. Colour solution (brown bottle)
4. Mixer
5. Conditioner (small sachet on the instructions)

The colour is easy to prepare. You just need to unscrew the top from the brown bottle, and screw it into the white one;
After that, just shake madly.

From there, one applies the colour normally- apply gloves, squirt it all into your hair and massage.

Wait for fifteen minutes before rinsing. I wore a shower cap over it, but still experienced dripping, unfortunately.  (I also waited 25 because I got distracted.)  However, the dye washes off skin rather easily; probably because this is only a level II/semi-permanent dye.

Before and After!
Before; as you can see, my hair was very pale, apart from my roots.

After; The colour is light and has a slightly coppery tone to it after I washed it out. My roots are still darker, but I expected that. At least they don’t look as obvious now.

Colour after two washes:
The colour has faded very slightly after washing, but it was mostly the intense, coppery tone that faded.  I’m happy with that, as the colour is less stark and there are slightly lighter streaks in my hair.

Overall, I think I’d rate this product a 7/10.  I liked the price (though it was on sale) and the results, especially after it faded.  However, I wasn’t so fond of the copper tone of the results and the liquid formula is inconvenient.  (Not to mention the typical home dye gloves!)

REVIEW ► Fruttini Lime & Mint Cooling Spray

I was about 14 when I discovered the invention that are cooling sprays. At that time French Connection were producing their own, which I religiously used to cool down with when I woke up.  Unfortunately, I haven’t seen that spray in years, and thought my cooling spray hunt was over, when I discovered this spray in Müller.

The spray cost about €3, if I recall correctly.  Fruttini has other scents for body spray, but this is the only one they claim as “cooling”.
As for the cooling claim, it does work! A couple of spritzes of this on your skin helps temporarily cool you down in the hot sun.  Unfortunately, temporary is the key word here.  Because it’s a liquid spray, it only cools your skin, so one spray will not keep you cool for the entire day.
Scent-wise, the spray is lovely.  It is a fresh scent that isn’t too sweet or overpowering, and I love spraying it just to smell it.  It makes me want to try more of the Lime & Mint Range.
As well as Lime & Mint, Fruttini offers Pineapple Prosecco, Lychee Vanilla, Ginger Passionfruit, Cherry Vanilla, Coco Banana, Milky Orange, and the new Strawberry Starfruit. Every variety has a shower gel, body spray, and some type of lotion.  The ranges are grouped as; “Fruttini Sorbet” and “Fruttini Gourmet”, and this affects the type of things they have.  The site offers images of each product, but they are slightly small, so reading the bottles can be tricky.
The homepage is

My personal feelings towards this product is that I would certainly keep using it. It’s just right to cool me down during a day in the park, and the lovely scent makes it very appealing.  The spray didn’t cause any bad effects on my skin, which often gets quite irritated or dry, which is another plus mark. I am also tempted to try some of their other scents, as the prices looked quite reasonable in-store, and Müller is close to my campus.
I’m not sure if it is possible to order/buy this range outside of Germany, but I will try to find out.