Skincare Favourites – October 2015

Skincare Favourites – October 2015

Welcome to your very first demi-post. This is actually a supplementary blog entry to an Instagram skincare post that just went up. I didn’t have the patience to write a loooong caption over there so all the reasoning behind my current capsule skincare routine will be documented here.

Firstly, I’ve been having a bit of a ‘good skin moment’ after a massive hormonal breakout (ok, slight exaggeration here) few weeks back. So I got back into a lot of my go-to’s to make sure my skin get’s back to it’s normal, healthy glowy state.

Overall my skin is pretty well behaved (touch wood). My only concerns are tackling dehydration, fine lines and also evening out my skin tone. Also I am of a combination dry skin type FYI.Skincare Cleansers

My cleansing routine always starts with Bioderma (micellar/water cleanser) followed up with an oil or a balm cleanser (double cleansing is a must in my opinion if you wear makeup on the daily).

The usual suspects are SK2 Facial Treatment Cleansing Oil or the Omorovicza Thermal Cleansing Balm. Between the two, the Omorovicza is my absolute favourite it’s great for all skin types (even sensitive skin) and I consider it more skincare than a cleanser. Basically cos it’s NOT JUST for removing makeup and dirt, which is why I use this as a second cleanse after my Bioderma has removed a majority of my makeup. It’s more of a DEEEEEEP cleanse so there’s no residue dirt or anything that would clog my pores.

Most people find a balm cleanser annoying, it’s a pain to get off in a hurry (you definitely need warm water and a wash cloth) and this one’s freaking expensive. BUT, whenever my skin is in a bad state, I make sure I switch to this to ‘heal’ it. (full review here)

The SK2 cleanser is my second in command. If my skin isn’t particularly fussy, I use this. It’s my favourite of all oil cleansers (i’ve tried quite a few) and I find it very gentle, taking off makeup with ease. The mild rose fragrance is also a plus. Helps you get into wind-down mode before bed.

For removing eye makeup my holy grail is the Clarins Instant Eye Makeup Remover. This takes of everything (even stubborn waterproof makeup like mascara) super fast and I love it. Always have a back up ready for when I run out.

Toner

These days (and for the past year) my go-to toner is Serozinc by La Roche-Posay. It’s a bit of a pain to source since it’s only available in France but I have quite a few back ups from my last trip to Paris and I’m really happy to have a good supply. This is basically something to spritz on after cleansing, before you pile on your skincare. The active ingredient here is Zinc Sulfate & Sodium Chloride. It basically kills any bacteria and soothes skin. I also use this whenever my skin feels itchy or sensitive and this instantly calms it down. Also if you are prone to breakouts it’s a good product to have at hand as it purifies skin and stops bacteria breeding in your pores. Acne flare ups can be cured twice as fast and great for those with fussy skin.

Eye Care

There are currently 4 products in rotation at the moment. It’s basically a La Prairie mix and Shiseido mix. I tend to alternate these over the week and both are combinations that have worked for me in the past.

I use the La Prairie combination for hard core anti wrinkle action + brightening and the Shiseido for extra hydration, wrinkle prevention and building up skin immunity (this is where Shiseido Ultimune Eye comes handy)

Between the two my under eyes are doing well. And it’s the best products i’ve found so far.

Night Serums

Whenever my skin has a B**** fit I turn to my HG serum combo for tackling blemishes, evening out skin tone, plumping, brightening AND reducing acne scaring. This basically covers it all. The duo is Lancome Visionnaire and the Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate.

I have reviewed them both here. Highly recommend this combo for keeping skin looking healthy and youthful.

For days I need a boost of hydration, my go to is Hydraluron serum by Indeed Labs. I haven’t reviewed this yet but as a quick intro, it’s great for layering before night or day cream for combatting dehydration. A super product at a fantastic price point (drugstore skincare from Boots).

Night Creams

I don’t have too many that I rotate but from all I’ve tried these two are my current go-to’s that work well over my serums.

First up the Omorovicza Rejuvenating night cream. LOVE this stuff. It’s basically a slightly richer night cream that plumps up and deeply hydrates skin. If you have dry, combination-dry or normal skin, THIS IS FOR YOU. But of course like all Omorovicza products this too is pretty much of a luxury purchase. However, I LOVE it and recommend it to every one!

Next up, an Estee Lauder cream I haven’t talked about yet.

Nutritious Vitality 8 Radiant Moisture Creme is fairly new to my routine (in comparison to my Omorovicza) and have been using it on and off for the last 3 months. This is a new release by EL for building up skin immunity/radiance and works great over any serums you may use. First up, I believe this is actually a day cream, BUT is slightly richer and thicker in consistency so I love it for night time use since I have combination skin. This cream smells soo good (a fruity delicious smell I can’t get enough of) and absorbs easily once smoothed in. I always end up waking with plump, nourished skin and HIGHLY recommend you try it yourself. Amazing product at a good price. (Full review to follow)

Peels & Exfoliators

To maintain fresh skin without dead cell build up, I try to use a chemical peel or some exfoliation at least once a week. This is a great way to ensure your nightly skincare penetrates well.

My HG is the Dermalogica Gentle Cream Exfoliant. I’ve talked about this before and it’s a great product that takes off any dead cell build up with ease! I feel the name ‘Gentle’ cream exfoliant is slightly misleading as this is potent stuff. But as long as you follow instructions and don’t leave it on longer than recommended you should be fine. I recommend this to everyone except the severely sensitive skin types. A wonderful product for weekly use.

The next exfoliant I have quite recently added to my routine is the Tata Harper Resurfacing Mask. It’s this yummy jelly like mask that removes dead cells in a more gentler manner. You can use this up to 2-3 times a week depending on how often you feel like your skin needs exfoliation. It smells like roses, soooo calming and a delicious treat for sluggish skin. (P.S- mine’s a smaller version and not the full sized product in case you were wondering)

Brightening & Hydration Masks

All skincare routines should include a brightening mask and hydrating masks and my recent go-to’s have been by Skin Inc. A brand i’m just discovering. So far i’m loving everything i’ve tried and the stand out products have been the Pure Deep Sea Hydrating Mask (great as a sleeping mask or a primer under makeup for dry skin types) and the Get Glowin’ Brightening Mask. I’ve got a longish review planned for this weekend so stay tuned for that. But without giving too much away, the brightening mask is a must try. Seriously, go buy it NOW.

That concludes my chatty skincare entry of favourites. Hope I didn’t bore you halfway but certainly better than killing you with a long caption on IG so yeah >.<

P.S- Thank you for stopping by and hope this entry proved a good read!

xx,

Michelle.

 

 

 

 

3 holiday essentials you need! : Becca, Clarins, Nuxe

3 holiday essentials you need! : Becca, Clarins, Nuxe

Hi There! Hello from sunny Seychelles. Since I do enjoy blogging on holiday, here’s a quick post on todays essentials. A trio of amazing products for shimmering limbs, glowy complexion and lusciously glossy, healthy lips.

Becca shimmering skin perfector nuxe huile clarins lip oil

(L-R)  Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Or shimmering dry oil, Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal (5g mini size) and the Clarins Instant Light Lip Comfort Oil in the shade 02 Raspberry.

Clarins Instant light lip oil swatch

Let’s start with my favourite of the three, the Becca SSP.

The Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector has been one of my go to products for complexion illumination for ages, and when I saw they released a mini trio set containing the Gold, Pearl and Opal, I knew I had to get that too. I figured the tiny purse friendly size would be quite handy.

Becca shimmering skin perfector

The Shimmering Skin Perfector is Beccas star product. It’s what Becca is known for. If you ever were curious how models in bikini cover shoots always sport such amazing healthy, glowy skin, this was most likely the product used; it’s a makeup artists favourite.

Becca Sensual Skin Enhancer mini

Although the regular size comes in a pump bottle, this mini one actually comes with a wand. I still prefer pump bottles for hygiene reasons, but this version is great for someone who wants to sample the product without having to drop a load of cash one go.

The Becca SSP is the perfect consistency for mixing, and not too runny that it alters the texture of your foundation. Just one pump (around the size of a grain of rice) mixed in with your foundation is all you need create a beautiful natural, glowy finish and perfect for combining with my matte foundations to counteract the overly flat, matte look.

You could also use this under your foundation as a primer on just the areas you want added glow, as well as over your foundation, patted lightly on the bridge of your nose and tops of cheekbones for a beautiful glossy highlight (which you’d see in my FOTD photo at the end of the post). The highly pigmented, creamy formula ensures you don’t mess up the layer of foundation beneath.

Opal as you can see is a golden beige product and works great for any skintone.

Personally I prefer Pearl. The translucent white shade, which adds extra ‘highlight’ in a subtle manner. You won’t look ghostly I promise. (For reference, i’m an NC 35)

Next up, Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse. A multi purpose dry oil for face, body and hair. I have this in a tiny travel size with just 10ml which came as part of a Nuxe gift set.

Nuxe Huile Or review

It’s said to contain 6 plant oils for nourishing skincare benefits. Unfortunately since the packaging is in french, i’ve no clue what they are! But, let me give you the low down on what it does.

Huile Prodigieuse Or, the shimmery version of their regular dry oil has a  pleasing fragrance and is infused with golden shimmer. The consistency is quite thin, it applies without any streaks resulting in a uniform veil of shimmer.

nuxe huile prodigieuxe review

I use this on my legs and arms for a warmed up shimmery glow. A beautiful St. Tropez, illuminated look.

As the name suggests the finish is dry. You won’t feel oily and sticky after this absorbs in (use on damp skin, straight off the shower so it sinks in easily) ; and unlike creams, it won’t melt and make your limbs feel gross once you step outside, making it the perfect moisturiser for your next trip to the tropics or the beach.

Lastly my latest find. The elusive Clarins Instant Light – Lip Comfort Oil in the shade 02 Raspberry which seems to be sold out almost everywhere.

Clarins lip oil review

As of late nourishing lip oils and lip glosses are the hottest beauty trend, with each brand introducing their own version to stay competitive. I’ve sampled a few and have been loving the Dior Rouge Brilliant glosses lately and this is yet another to add to my HG ‘lip treat’ list.

Clarins lip oil swatch

The Clarins Lip Comfort Oil is a thick syrupy-oil consistency and has a mild tint to it. What initially caught my attention though was that it smells soo darn good! It’s fragrance of red berries is so addictive, making me want to keep reapplying throughout the day! 

As you’d expect, this does feel slightly tacky, although nothing like your typical sticky lip glosses. I found it wasn’t catching onto hair all day, although I did wear it loose on the beach. So that’s a plus!

This oil instantly make the lips look glossy and plump and in the mean time works on hydrating and nourishing it (with plant oils such as Jojoba, Raspberry seed and Hazel), softening flakes and smoothing them out making it easy to exfoliate the dry bits without causing any injury to your delicate lips. A wonderful product that combines skincare with makeup!

Lastly, here’s my MOTD, a beach friendly look I wore for poolside lounging.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

I’m wearing Opal mixed in with my Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer + CDP Radiant Fluid Foundation combo which gives the skin that glowy sunkissed finish. Brows are done with the Suqqu brow pen for a natural and water/sweat/humidity proof result and lips nourished with the Clarins Lip Comfort Oil.

Sounds like a lot of makeup right? but all applied in very thin layers for a natural look 😉

Skincare essentials – Travel edition

Skincare essentials – Travel edition

There are some things in life I just can’t live without, and that’s a decent skincare arsenal. Here’s mine, stripped down to a bare minimum. These are all I need to keep my skin happy during a short getaway.

Skincare favourites

Bare in mind that this is just what I packed for a couple of days at the beach so I haven’t included a heavy duty cleanser as I’m not wearing much other than a concealer and brows. Somedays I do a little eye liner, but that’s about it.

Travel skincare cleansers

To me a good skincare routine includes an effective cleanser. For now I’m relying on this one by Murad. I’ve repurchased this and it’s been my go to cleanser for the last 5 years or so. It’s their Soothing Gel Cleanser formulated for sensitive skin. The texture is very light weight and jelly like. It doesn’t foam much but cleans my face without stripping it of all moisture. Skin feels comfortable and bouncy. I use this morning and night.

If i’m wearing any eye makeup, I use the Clarins Instant Eye Makeup Remover to cleanse it off at the end of the day. I pack this smaller travel size bottle and it doesn’t take up too much space in my travel pouch. For speedy eye makeup removal (even waterproof mascara) without any sensitivity I highly recommend this one.

Travel skincare sunscreen

After cleansing, it’s moisturiser and sun screen. No matter how humid or sweaty the weather is, it’s a non negotiable step. Ideally with my extra oily t-zone, i’d happily go without moisturiser, but since it’s something I don’t compromise on, next best thing is my Hydraluron hydration serum. It gives my skin a burst of moisture and absorbs immediately leaving NO oily feeling.

I then follow with my daily sunscreen which is the Avène Day Protector UV EX SPF 30 PA ++++. I like that it’s formulated for sensitive skin and also absorbs well into the skin leaving it velvety and supple. Again, no oiliness. On the down side, I am convinced this blocks my pores. But until I find something as good as this, it’s a necessary evil i’m willing to put up with. Sigh.

Eye creams

For eyes I always, always use an eye cream. Even during the day, under makeup, I use one.

For travel I mainly pack these three. One serum and two eye creams.

For the ultimate line busting solution, my go to is the Zelens Triple Action Advanced eye cream. It’s a light gel texture and feels amazing on the eye area (for those of you who have very dry under eyes or love richer night creams, this one will feel rather under nourishing as it absorbs completely).

Usually I apply this after I have prepped my under eye with the Lancôme Génifique Yeux. Which is a serum that absorbs immediately and leaves no greasy feel under the eyes. The reason I pair all my eye creams with the Génifique Yeux is that I notice it boosts the anti aging benefits of my eye creams and I love it.

For nights I prefer to alternate my Zelens eye cream with the Shiseido Bio-Performance Super Corrective eye cream. This is my holy grail hydrating/anti-aging eye cream. Although it’s not as effective on deep, stubborn wrinkles (compared to Zelens) I love it for how hydrating it is. It actually does an amazing job hydrating so I always repurchase this.

If you don’t have any major wrinkle issues and/or in the mid 20’s to early 30’s this is the one for you! It keeps eyes looking bright and youthful as well as controlling the appearance of any new fine lines.

Travel skincare visionnaire

The one thing I NEVER ever leave home without is my Lancôme Visionnaire Serum, reviewed here. It’s been my holy grail serum for the last three years or so.

If uneven, blemished skin with noticeable pores are your concern. This is what you need. It will make your skin look rested and glowing overnight. I have several of these at home, including this tiny version I use when I travel.

Travel Skincare SOS

Lastly, I also pack two SOS treatment products where ever I go. One is the Avène Soothing serum. It’s what I rely on when my skin feels sensitized and red. If you suffer from sensitive skin, this product is gold. It instantly calms angry, red blotchy skin.

My second SOS product is the Dermalogica Overnight Clearing Gel. It’s god sent for banishing those pesky, holiday ruining breakouts. Apply this at the very first sign of a blemish and you could control the breakout as well as enable it to heal without leaving any discolouration or marks. Certainly a product worth investing in.

So there you have it. My skincare essentials for travel. They all fit into a relatively small pouch so by no means is it a burden carrying them around. And at the end of the day, my little bag of magic comes equipped with everything I would need for any holiday emergency!

5 Simple steps to get the ‘glow’

‘Lit from within’, ‘glowing skin’ phrases we hear almost everywhere. Personally I am sick of hearing it over & over, but then it’s summer, who doesn’t want to look healthy and glowy right?

summer glow
So here’s a guide to achieving glowing skin. A 15 min manual if you may, cos I know we all are pressed for time!

I like to start with skincare. As no amount of makeup can make up for unhealthy skin.

Also since this is a quick guide. I am just focusing on speedy remedies. Starting with..

clarins

 

Exfoliation
As you may already know, our skin is made up of layers and layers of cells. The oldest layer being right on the top.
As skin renews its self and constantly pushes new cells to the surface, this older layer sits on top and starts to accumulate as a coating covering the new healthy skin underneath. This is how you find skin to be dull and lackluster.
In order to achieve maximum luminosity, the accumulated dead skin cells need to be gently brushed away. So we use an exfoliator. Personally I prefer a chemical exfoliator over a mechanical exfoliator (regular face scrubs or wash cloths) which is a very mild form of exfoliation using peeling products with fruit acids or lactic acids (which I shall do a separate post on later). But since many of you are most likely to have a scrub of some sort at hand, I say grab that. If it’s a brightening exfoliator, even better!

Gently exfoliate your skin with this. Vigorous, over enthusiastic buffing is not advised as this leads to broken capillaries and sensitized skin which leads to red and raw skin. Not the look we are aiming for.

La Mer soft cream

Moisturize
For the new skin to be glowy we need to ‘water’ it.
Exfoliation temporarily takes away the natural layer of sebum on top of your skin. So we absolutely must moisturise after exfoliation. This stops skin from loosing its moisture as well as help retain and capture moisture to the upper layers with the help of ingredients such as Hyaluronic acid.
Moisturisers also help temporarily take care of dry flaky skin. Which is the key culprit that inhibits light reflecting off your face (which is what creates the said glow we are after). The best way to explain this is, think of how light reflects off a smooth flat surface as opposed to an uneven bumpy surface. You see where I am going with this right?

Bronze
So it’s summer and the hottest chicks around are sporting a tan. Why aren’t you? Let me break down the benefits of a little tan.
1) Bronzing instantly slims down your face. Especially if you concentrate it towards the outer areas of your face when you bronze. So Ideally you do a quick sweep all over and then go back again just around the outer parameter deepening the tan.
2) You are instantly able to wear brighter lipsticks and blushes than what you are usually confortable with, which in turn draw attention to your features. AND you can easily pull off more dramatic makeup looks! As much as the ‘pale and interesting’ look can be appealing, try a bit of bronzing if only for summer.
3) You look like you came back from an exotic vacation. To me, this is reason enough!

chanel les beiges highlighter delice

Highlight
So bronzing and highlighting go hand in hand. When a bronzer darkens and ‘recedes’, you need to ‘bring out’ certain areas of your face with a little highlighter. This instantly lifts your features and make them look more sharp and defined. A little highlighter dusted on the high points of your cheekbones, bridge of your nose and chin goes a long way.
If you are naturally oily around the t zone, you can skip the nose as you are most likely averse to highlighting that area.
However I find that if you use a good mattifier under makeup, then this is an extra step that makes your skin look beautiful. As much as I hate oil, I love a lit from within glow. And a highlighter is the quickest way to give you bucket loads of this.
*Of course less is more. Always keep that in mind when using a highlighter. In general use a very sparse, tapered brush or a fan brush for best results.

Guerlain meteorites travel set

Finishing powder
This is the final step. A good finishing powder is like the invisible butler. You never see it but you know that the job is being done. So what exactly does a finishing powder do?
It essentially smooth’s out the complexion, like photo shopping an image.
Pores and fine lines are blurred and look less visible. Also the fine shimmer in these helps light reflect off your face better giving you ‘the glow’. It basically makes your skin look healthy and even. I personally never skip this step. Hence why I have my trusty Guerlain Meteorites with me no matter where I travel!

 

So there you have it. The secret to healthy and beautiful skin. Although it was a lot to read, this only takes a very little time when you actually get down to doing it. After which you are left with gorgeous youthful fresh skin that is luminous!
I hope you enjoyed this post and stay tuned for some body basics that will be coming up later this week to help you get the ultimate summer/beach ready body.

Wishing all of you a happy week ahead!
xx
Michelle.

Current favourites

Hi Hi!

Todays post is all about products i’ve been enjoying lately. Random lifestyle and travel necessities kinda mix with a few beauty essentials thrown in as well.

I usually save posts like this for Instagram, but this time around I wanted to add some quick reviews too, so what better place to do a detailed post than right here, my outlet, my blog!!!

Let’s start out with the edit.

 

Valentino Penhaligons La Mer Giorgio Armani Diptyque VDL Hakuhodo

First up, some things I use when I travel.

My Benefit eye mask- A little treat from my visit to the San Francisco Benefit store on Fillmore street. I love how soft and silky this feels and is my inflight essential. I need this to get some shut eye while I patiently (Or impatiently rather) wait till we land.

Sleep sniff box- It’s a soothing mix of essential oils (Lavender, Cammomile & Neroli) that calms the mind and gets you into a nice relaxed state. I love to keep this in my carry on so I can take a whiff of this and go right to sleep.

Next, some mode essentials

Lace slippers – This is by far my most loved pair of shoes right now. Since i’m a jeans and tee kinda gal, they are super easy to mix and match and I always love how it shows off my pedicure too! It’s a very budget friendly find from Bershka and I really can’t get enough. Plus, they are virtually weightless! I can walk miles in them… Glad I packed these for my holiday.

Red Valentino bag – Just big enough to hold my phone, mirror, lipstick and maybe a perfume. But is oh so light and I love how the bright red instantly lifts any outfit. Plus these shoulder bags are always great when going sightseeing cos you can be ‘hands free’ to have your camera ready while making memories! I am glad I am finally putting this to good use, it’s been neglected for far too long.

Some beauty!

Clarins samples – Always a favourite for when I travel. There are quite a few that I use on a daily basis so I am glad I have them in a convenient travel size as well. The products I enjoy the most are their Defining eye lift serum, Hydra Quench moisture mask, Hydra Quench cream gel and the Instant eye makeup remover.

Clarins

So a quick review on these.

Defining eye lift –

I am someone who wakes up with majorly puffy eye lids. Although they slowly ‘depuff’ by the time I get around to doing my makeup. I still like to use this to tighten my eye area. It’s a serum that can be applied before your regular eye cream and just a tiny amount will do. I apply it on my eye lid and smooth it out towards the brow in a patting motion so that it stimulates circulation and drains any water retention that causes the puffiness. If you are looking to add one more step to your eye routine, this could be a worthy contender!

Hydra Quench cream mask –

This is a Clarins product that I LOVE. It’s not expensive and works just as effectively as some of the more pricier moisture masks i’ve tried. I also love the nice fresh scent of this particular line by Clarins. I use the gel moisturiser of this same line for morning hydration and have talked about it before.

Instant eye makeup remover –

Just a good speedy eye makeup remover with no irritation. I love how this dissolves mascara without having to ‘rub’ too much. And I am glad I have this in a travel size. Clarins really are soo generous with samples. Kinda addicting in a way..

Back to the post,

Diptyque

Hand creams – I’ve been loving two actually. I use the thicker, more nourishing La Mer one as a night time treatment and this Diptyque Eau Rose as a day time hand cream since it’s smaller and I find is very easy to take around in my bag. Personally I wish La Mer would do a more travel friendly size of their hand cream. Have you seen how heavy the cap is??? It’s insane. I feel like I need a separate bag to carry this in!

Now onto some makeup bag essentials..

Hakuhodo retractable brush – Fits perfectly in my little makeup bag and great to use with any powder I might be carrying. I love how it is encased in this holder so the bristles don’t mingle with the other contents of my bag. So hygienic.

VDL Blotting powder – I love this stuff. I remember how I tried this the very first day at the counter and all dewiness, GONE right in front of my eyes. It’s lightweight and doesn’t leave a white cast cos it’s translucent, so even if you have darker skin, this works perfect for you too.

Diptyque Do Son – This is my favourite Diptyque perfume. It’s a heady scent of Tuberose, something feminine and floral but is still a bit creamy and smooth. I’ve had this for over a year now and I still can’t stop using it. I like to keep a sample in my bag so I don’t have to carry my bottle around when I travel. Works out perfectly for me. But I think I may need to restock my samples next time I visit a Diptyque store..

O.P.I Avoplex cuticle oil to go – Something I can’t live without! You really REALLY need to try this. It’s a little tube with a brush tip applicator which instantly hydrates dry cuticles. Normally for me hand creams alone aren’t enough, and I always rely on this baby to keep my hands looking well groomed and hydrated.

Sensai Lip treatment sample – So I have never owned this in a full size and it is my second sample pot (I got three!). But I am completely in love with this conveniently packaged coin size pot of lip treatment. It’s my nightly lip balm and I also keep it in my makeup bag to use as and when needed. The texture of this is not waxy or oily like normal lip balms, but a lightweight formula that feels like a light moisturiser. It keeps my lips in good condition, so I like to have this around.

Armani Flash Lacquer 520 – This is my go-to lipgloss these days. It’s a medium pink with a slight warm tone. Perfect to mimic youthful healthy lips. I also love that this can be layered over lipstick to make them more pinky and flushed. I believe it’s a fail safe colour for most skin tones.

concluding with some lifestyle products…

Penhaligons Endymion candle – Where do I even begin…. It’s an addictive creamy scent with a very sexy warm profile. I keep this in my living area and light it whenever I need to feel pampered and relaxed. I love love love this!

current faves phone battery pack

Breath luxury phone portable charger by M.Craftsman – Can’t count how many times this has been my saviour when my phone died. This portable charger can store up to 2.5 times your iPhone battery and is great for when you are on vacay so you can charge on the go if you are out all day. I actually have two. And how sleek is the packaging with the leather and suede mix? VERY!!!

Last but not least –

Some Fashion/Art in the form of Manolo drawings. Who doesn’t like shoes? And I think Manolo makes some of the most creative and exotic ones. I love to brows through this little book and dream of all the gorgeous shoes that I would just love to try on some day. These are more like works of art. Truly admire Mr Manolo.

 

So there you have it, a ramble about my current loves. Hope I didn’t bore you too much 🙂

In any case I plan to do more lifestyle type posts like this in future to break up the monotony of just beauty and skincare reviews.

Wishing you a great weekend!

Michelle.

Morning skincare routine

Here it is, the final entry for skincare week!

I know I seem to have worked backwards as far as sequence goes.. but that’s how my world works!

So this is going to be all about morning skincare. I basically keep it very simple and never really go overboard with any anti ageing skincare during the day time as I feel the benefits of skincare are delivered more effectively in the p.m, as skin repairs itself at night while we sleep.

Morning skincare routine Murad Lancome SK2 Clarisonic Fresh

 

 

I normally start off with a mild cleanse, as there is no makeup or dirt to be removed. All a morning cleanser needs to do is take away last nights left over skincare (if any) and clear out any dead skin cells.

For that I rely on this Murad one.

Also around three times a week I sneak in a bit of Clarisonic action skipping my Murad cleanser for some extra deep cleaning and literally sweep away any dead cell buildup. I pair it with this Soy face cleanser by Fresh.

Finally on to the good stuff,

During the a.m I like to use this Facial Treatment Clear lotion by SK2 which is a clarifying toner to refresh and wipe off dead cells and prep skin for the next step.. moisturizer!

Clarins HydraQuenchMoisturiser is something I take very seriously as my combination skin can be a real pain in the a** if not hydrated well and the dryer areas such as my cheeks can be especially uncooperative when I am applying foundation, and rebel with flakey patches. The key is to find a product that works great at hydrating as well as being light enough to not cause an oily mess on my t-zone as the day goes on.

I really love the Clarins HydraQuench range for this. It hydrates but is light enough for the daytime. It’s also a great basic moisturizer that pairs well with most serums as it doesn’t necessarily have any specific anti ageing or treatment properties that may conflict with the serums that you may currently use. It has a lovely light texture, a refreshing soft smell and absorbs really fast.

I’d highly recommend the cream gel version to anyone with oily or combination skin for effective oil free hydrating . Two thumbs up!

The next product is a fairly new addition to my routine. It’s this really nice Soothing Serum by Avène. It’s heaven sent for days when I wake up with a nasty red blemish or any irritations in general. This baby calms skin like nobody’s business! If you are plagued with sensitive skin as I am, you’d know the woes of dealing with hot, flushed red patches all over your face. The Soothing Serum calms redness caused by irritation within 15 mins and works really well for me. I just love it. (I use this before moisturizing btw and only when needed, not everyday)

Lancome Renergie Yeux Multi LiftNext up, eye creams

In the mornings I choose light or lifting eye creams. I find that my regular night eye creams are too heavy for the day time and would cause my concealer to migrate and shift as it makes the under eye area very slick.

So the SK2 Facial Treatment Essence eye cream is perfect for that. It’s a very light texture and delivers just enough hydration to create a good base for applying any concealer.

Another eye cream I really love for day time is this one by Lancôme. The Rénergie Yeux Multi Lift. I am so drawn to eye creams that lift the eye lid and deflate any puffiness. And in the mornings it’s essential to have depuffed under eyes to stop them looking tired. And this one is not too heavy and hydrates just the right amount. A big plus for me.

One more eye cream I really loved for it’s lifting action is the Clarins Defining Eye Lift. It instantly lifts up the eyelid and gives it a more youthful appearance. It also tightens the under eyes. Sadly I only had a sample of this and never really purchased it as it’s not necessarily hydrating enough to use on the whole eye area (it’s a runny liquid type serum). But I hope to purchase this in future as it did a good job as far as lifting goes, and I can use this strictly on my lids.

 

With that, I conclude my a.m routine.

Hope you found this post interesting.

Wishing you a lovely Sunday, and if you are a residing in Singapore there is a little giveaway happening on my IG (which ends tonight). Pop by there and leave a comment to win a whole bunch of Yves Rocher goodies that were so generously sent to me by Yves Rocher Singapore specially for my lovely followers. There are two sets up for grabs 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite face masks

Face masks, the emergency rescue team of the skincare world. Apparently there’s a mask for pretty much everything these days. Be it an instant ‘lift’ for sagging facial contours, miraculous skin plumping anti-agers. And the best of all wrinkle relaxers!

My weakness is hydrating masks and clarifying masks.. and can’t seem to get enough of them!

Face masks sisley avene glamglow clarins

I’ve used quite a number over the years and have arrived at these fab 5 that never disappoint.

a. Sisley Black Rose cream mask

b. Avène Soothing moisture mask

c. Clarins HydraQuench cream mask

d. SK2 Facial treatment mask

e. GlamGlow Supermud clearing treatment mask

 

Face masks Clarins Avene Sisley Black rose

 

Usually masks are part of my morning routine.. I basically pop one on before I head to shower (which is after I have cleansed my face) and more often than not, it’s this Clarins HydraQuench.

Once I am done showering I just wipe off the excess and go right into makeup.. I have never had a problem applying makeup over this (provided you do a thorough wipe), and it eliminates any chance of flaky spots and creates a good canvas for my foundation!

This is also a great mask for a mid week treat too, the refreshing fresh fragrance of this is soo calming and helps with relaxation if you want to curl up in bed and catch up on some reading!

 

The Avène Soothing mask is my savior when my sensitive skin decides to act up. This is great for moisturizing and calming skin that’s irritated. In my case when I am suffering from allergies and my face get’s itchy.

I apply a thick layer of this and wait for about 15 mins and wipe it off. I always follow this up with my Avène Deep Moist Lotion which was discussed here. It helps with continuous hydration as well as takes off any residue of the mask, as I feel that foundation doesn’t spread as smoothly over this.

This mask has no heavy scent, just the usual calming Avène fragrance if you are familiar with it.

* Also note, it would also double up as a great treatment mask for sunburnt skin! Perfect for Summer.

 

Sisley Black Rose mask is my weekly treat. It’s soothing rose fragrance is just what the doctor ordered for weekend pamper sessions.

The second ingredient in this is Shea butter, which explains the intense plumping and hydration. It also contains Glycerin to hold moisture, and a tonne of other plant extracts to work on those anti ageing claims.

I love that the scent of this is from rose flower oil, a nice luxurious touch, which is expected for the price you pay.

The main benefit of using this is the instant radiance and plumping which helps iron out wrinkles temporarily, leaving my complexion looking glowy and most of all youthful! And the intense hydration is not short lived either, so that’s a plus as well.

I usually don’t wear makeup after applying this, and only use it on afternoons when I have plenty of free time to relax and enjoy this to it’s full potential.

Here’s a closer look at the masks discussed,

hydrating masks

 

 

 

GlamGlow Supermud mask

 

My absolute favourite clarifying mask is GlamGlow Supermud. It’s great for a good deep cleansing to get rid of any congestion and is also my go-to spot treatment! Just a dab of this on an emerging spot instantly calms it down and stops it becoming a big angry zit!

Although some may find the earthy, herby scent a bit overwhelming, I don’t mind it. You can read more here.

SK2 treatment mask

 

Now onto my favourite in-flight mask! The SK2 treatment mask.

Personally, not a big fan of sheet masks, but I always pack one of these for long haul flights as the dry cabin air can rob your skin of its moisture and radiance. Using one always allows me to disembark looking just as fresh as I boarded! They are generously soaked in Pitera enriched Treatment Essence which brightens and deeply hydrates. If you are new to these, the texture can be a little strange as it feels somewhat slimy.. but it’s something you eventually get used to.

 

Bottom line, all these masks are pretty good. I would most certainly repurchase each and every one of them. However if I had to recommend just one. It would be the Clarins HydraQuench. It’s great value for money and a must try by the brand.

The GlamGlow is also a great buy if you have acne prone skin. Although it’s on the pricier side, you get a lot of applications from a single jar so it lasts quite a while! Good value in my opinion.

 

Other info-

GlamGlow is available at Sephora and Tangs Orchard Singapore.

Sisley is available at DFS Galleria and Metro Paragon Singapore.

Clarins is available at all Clarins counters island wide.

Avène is available at all Watsons outlets island wide.