Tuesday, January 28, 2014

NEW IN! | Dirty Works "Good Clean Fun!"

I recently came across these cute bath, body and skincare products on the shelves at Coles (an Australian supermarket chain) and immediately wanted to try them out. 

The packaging was certainly what caught my attention, as the vibrant baby blue colour stood out from all the white and cream containers in the aisle. My initial thought was how similar the products looked to UK brand Soap & Glory - the design, packaging and product range. I did some research and found that Dirty Works is also a UK brand. 

I picked up 4 products from the 7 that were available in store -
  1. Dirty Works Supreme Cream Body Butter 300ml ($9.77 AUD)
  2. Dirty Works Buff Your Stuff Body Scrub 200ml ($8.68 AUD)
  3. Glow Girl Buttery Salt Scrub 300ml ($9.77 AUD)
  4. Bling It On Shimmer Lotion 200ml ($9.77)
The products all have a very lovely, sweet, fresh (fruity) smell, similar to Soap & Glory products. There are also two coconut products (with purple packaging) in the range, but I didn't pick them up as I don't like anything with a coconut scent. 

The products are very affordable, and I'm super excited to try them all out! I hope they are as good as they look and sound! 

- Dirty Works is exclusive to Coles Supermarkets -

You can read more and check out the extensive Dirty Works range here.
Or purchase their products at Coles online.

Monday, January 20, 2014


I've accumulated quite a few empties over the past 2 months so let's get straight into them!

Nivea Rich Nourishing Body Lotion Dry Skin 400ml
($5.99 at Chemist Warehouse, or available at Priceline, Target, Kmart, Big W, Supermarkets & selected Chemists)

I've tried this moisturiser once before, but forgot if I actually liked it or not so when I repurchased it again, I quickly realised why I didn't enjoy it too much. While it is certainly a great moisturiser, like most of the Nivea skincare range, this formula is quite thick and therefore takes a bit more work to apply and absorb into the skin. When it comes to all over body moisturising, I like the process to be quick and effective. I found that this moisturiser took a bit of time to massage into the skin (especially such a large surface area) and it did leave a bit of a (but not uncomfortable) sticky residue. Aside from my sheer laziness and impatience, I would still highly recommend this moisturiser. It's made for very dry skin so I can understand why its formula is thicker and long lasting on the skin. 
I would not repurchase this product.

Nivea Firming Body Lotion Normal Skin 400ml
($5.99 at Chemist Warehouse, or available at Priceline, Target, Kmart, Big W, Supermarkets & selected Chemists)

This was featured in my last empties post, and it will probably be featured again in future empties too. It's very easy to apply and is a light fast absorbing lotion. I actually use it more for its skin firming qualities rather than its moisturisation. You can read more about my thoughts on it here
I would and have already repurchased this product. 

Nivea In-Shower Rich Body Lotion Skin Conditioner Very Dry Skin 400ml 
($6.69 at Chemist Warehouse, or available at Priceline, Target, Kmart, BigW, Supermarkets & selected Chemists)

I really wanted to like this product but sadly it's not something that I would repurchase again. I didn't feel like it moisturised or conditioned my skin the same way that a normal body lotion would. I have a full review on my blog if you would like to read more.
I would not repurchase this product.

Juliet Body Caress Shower Gel Nourishing 500ml - Almond Oil & Vanilla 
($2.80 at Aldi stores)

This body wash I discovered early last year when shopping in Aldi. I was in need of a new body wash and had tried so many different types and brands, all of which I continued to move on from each time I had used them up. While I'm not particularly fussy nor do I want to spend money on expensive body washes, I do look for products that will benefit my skin. First and foremost though, I want it to smell good! Good enough that the scent will linger on my skin and make me feel super fresh and clean. I also want it to have some kind of nourishing quality; whether it be invigorating or moisturising, just be good to my skin. Lastly, it needs to have a decent lather - I prefer gels/foams rather than cream formulas. I actually went on a whim when I first picked this up as I hadn't really shopped in Aldi before, particularly for skincare and didn't know if their products were good. About 4 bottles later I'm still repurchasing it! This body wash lasts quite a long time for me (3-4 months used every single day) the bottle actually says 100+ washes so a little goes a long way. I'm not usually a fan of vanilla scents, but this body wash smells so lovely! It reminds me of baby shampoo, a very light subtle creamy smell. It makes my skin feel and smell so nice that sometimes I enjoy having it is a natural body fragrance.
I would and have already repurchased this product.

Vivant Revitafoam the Conditioning and Disentangling Mousse 125g
($22.49 at Priceline)

This stuff was great for detangling my hair. I purchased it a few years ago from a hair salon after the hairdresser used it on my hair and it felt so soft and smooth. I have fine hair but lots of it and it tends to get crazy tangled after showering and especially when I'm outside in the wind. The product is a foam mousse that you can apply to either wet or dry hair, very simple. I used it more after towel drying my hair and it instantly made brushing and styling my hair so much easier and less painful. I found that I had less breakage from pulling at the knots in my hair and it really made my hair soft and smooth once it dried. It smells fantastic too which is a bonus - like sweet berries (I think)!
I would repurchase this product.

Body Shaper Bio Elixia Cellulite Contour Creme 150ml
($59.00 at Priceline)

I got this in a Lusthaveit Box last year and was really looking forward to testing it out as I've never used a product like this before. Cellulite has never really been too much of a concern for me, however I have noticed recently (perhaps with age) that my bottom and thigh area is beginning to have a more visible cellulite appearance. I wanted to really commit to using this product to achieve the best results - the tube lasted me over a period of about a month - so I used it every single day without fail. While I didn't notice much difference in the appearance of my skin after 4 weeks (as the product claims), I did feel as though the skin around my bottom and thigh area were becoming much firmer. I would have to say that to visibly notice any difference in what the product claims to do, you'd have to use this product long term. One tube is not enough to see or maintain much difference. Perhaps after 2-3 tubes and a few months of use would be ideal. The formula has a gel consistency and absorbs really quickly once massaged into the skin, but the smell isn't so pleasant!
I would not repurchase this product at this time, but would consider after more research on other available products.

Macro Skincare Essentials Natural Vitamin E Cream 100g
($11.69 at Chemist Warehouse, or available at Priceline, Supermarkets & selected Chemists)

My dad has been using this product for years now and it works really well on his dry damaged skin. I decided to try this out as a night cream for my face as I was suffering from severe dryness throughout the cold and windy weather here in Melbourne. The cream is unperfumed and is a very thick and rich formula. It contains avocado oil which is what attracted me to it (I love all things avocado!). While I do like the product, I can't say that I noticed any dramatic changes in the appearance of my skin nor did it reduce the dryness, as I was still getting dry patches in the morning. The cream certainly feels very calming on my skin and I can see how it would help to prevent and reduce signs of ageing over time. However, as a night cream I don't think it has the benefits that I'm looking for. 
I would repurchase this product, but not to be used as a night facial cream.

Daiso Detergent for puff and sponge 80ml
($2.80 at Daiso Stores)

This stuff is fantastic! I will be doing a separate blog post on how I clean my makeup brushes and sponges using this, so I'll have more details there. This was actually the first product I bought from Daiso when they opened their first store here in Melbourne about three years ago. I was pretty skeptical given that the product was only $2.80, written 95% in Japanese and looked pretty cheapo to say the least. I risked it anyway and I am so pleased with how easy and well it works. It's a runny gel-like formula that creates a soapy lather when mixed with water. It removes almost all traces of foundation and product from brushes and sponges instantly with very little effort. It's incredible how clean and brand new it leaves sponges looking (ie. Beauty Blender & Real techniques Miracle Sponge). I noticed recently that people were only starting to recommend or pick up on it in the beauty/YouTube community, so I do wish that I had started my blog sooner to spread the word! (Daiso are slowly opening more stores across Australia - there are currently 5 locations here in Melbourne)
I would and have already repurchased this product.

Simple Hydrating Light Moisturiser 125ml
($8.39 at Chemist Warehouse, or available at Priceline, Target, Kmart, BigW, Supermarkets & selected Chemists)

A lovely light everydayfacial moisturiser. I really enjoy the Simple Kind To Skin skincare line so its no surprise that I like this moisturiser. It's a very nice unperfumed moisturiser and it sits very well under makeup. It absorbs quickly into the skin and I haven't had any problems with breakouts or irritations.
I would and have already repurchased this product.

Simple Eye Make-Up Remover 125ml
($8.39 at Chemist Warehouseor available at Priceline, Target, Kmart, BigW, Supermarkets & selected Chemists)

A holy grail product in my cleansing routine. Can't rave enough about it! Hands down the best eye make-up remover. It's super gentle on the eyes and removes absolutely every trace of eye make-up - including waterproof mascara - without any harsh rubbing or soaking. It works instantly, dissolving all the product onto the cotton pad/face wipe. Like all Simple products, it's unperfumed and I would actually compare its gentle clear formula to "cleansing water" like Bioderma or the Avene Micellaire Cleanser. In fact, I find that Bioderma takes quite awhile to dissolve my mascara and I have to wipe it back and forth quite a bit to remove all the residue, where as the Simple eye make-up remover really does just wipe away so quickly and easily. I would highly recommend this product for anyone with sensitive skin/eyes or just as a fantastic general eye makeup remover. LOVE!
I would and have already repurchased this product.

McPherson's Consumer Products Hand Cream 4.5ml - Almond Candy Milkshake
(no longer available)

Just a basic hand cream from Coles I got from a small gift set two Christmas's ago. Can't say too much about it, other than it smelt good - very sweet marshmallow scent. It really didn't moisturise my hands at all, but it was nice to throw in the handbag.
I would not repurchase this product.

Goldwell Dual Senses Rich Repair 60sec Treatment 50ml (sample)
($24.95 at Price Attack, or from haircare stores/salons)

This product was so beautiful and luxurious to use. The smell is absolutely devine and was enough for me to want to purchase the full size! This product acts basically like a conditioner, it detangled, smoothed and added shine to my hair - all in 60 seconds! Hard to believe I know, but I think it works. I used this a few times in place of my regular conditioner and found that my hair was so soft and smooth, so you can imagine how much healthier my hair felt when I used my regular conditioner after it. The sample came in a nice squeeze tube, but after researching it on Google, the full size actually comes in a round pot container. I'm not a huge fan of in-shower products that I have to use my hands and dig out, so If i do repurchase this I'll probably transfer it to a pump bottle for ease of use.
I would and am looking to repurchase this product ASAP.

Estee Lauder DayWear Plus Multi Protection Anti-Oxidant Base SPF30 50ml
(product has been discontinued)

I haven't finished using this one up yet but unfortunately had to toss it out because it had expired! I've had it for quite a few years now (eee guilty) but didn't use it enough to finish the tube. Due to regular day-to-day use of sunscreen, I found it difficult to incorporate the product into my skincare. I purchased it after seeing Nic from Pixiwoo and Tanya Burr from YouTube talk so highly of it. It's suppose to be a skin base that moisturises and evens out your skin tone (adds a very subtle natural tint to your face that develops after application) with the benefit of sun protection. It can be used on its own for a super natural look or underneath make-up. Nic from Pixiwoo used it as part of her summer holiday skincare and as I was travelling around that time too, I thought it would be the perfect all purpose product. The product doesn't give any coverage, so I did often wear a light foundation over the top of it. It's a very nice product, absorbs quickly into the skin and leaves a nice healthy looking glow. It has a fresh, cooling cucumber scent and was nice to use on hot days.
I would repurchase this product.

Johnson's Daily Essentials Nourishing Facial Cleansing Wipes for Dry Skin - 25 wipes 
($16.99 at Priceline, or available at Target, BigW, Kmart, Supermarkets & selected Chemists)

Again, a product I have been using for many years. It does the job, doesn't irritate my skin and it's convenient and easy to use. With facial cleansing wipes, what I look for first and foremost is that it won't dry, break out or irritate my skin. Secondly, it needs to be able to remove a decent amount of make-up. I've used cleansing wipes before that are either too dry or don't really remove anything without having to scrub or wipe vigorously at your face.These Johnson's wipes maintain their moisture and wipes away product very easily. I use facial cleansing wipes to remove the majority of my make-up first before I go in with a cleanser. This product ticks all those boxes, so I haven't needed to change onto another brand.
I would and have already repurchased this product.

Target Essentials Cosmetic Pads 80 pieces - Round 
($2.50 at Target Stores)

These are great, very clean and simple to use. What I like about them is that they don't fray and fall apart like most cotton pads do once they're wet. I use them with the Bioderma Crealine H2O Solution to wipe down my face after cleansing. They're super cheap too!
I would and have already repurchased this product.

Clarins Eye Contour Gel (sample sachet)
($65.00 for 20ml at Myer Stores or selected Chemists)

Had this lying around so wanted to use it up. It's a refreshing eye gel used to reduce puffiness and minimize dark circles. I didn't notice anything in the short time that I used it - it did have a slight cooling effect under the eyes but I would probably prefer a cream over a gel. 
I would not purchase this product.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Zero-Smudge Lengthening Mascara - 01 Black
($48.00 at Myer or David Jones Estee Lauder Counters)

This mascara is a staple item in my makeup collection! No matter what new mascara I try, I always come back to this one. I've been using it for years now and am yet to find a mascara that is similar or better than this. It adds volume and length to my lashes without clumping. What I love most about it though, (that no other mascara compares) is it's staying power. It's the only mascara I have used that doesn't smudge or transfer underneath my eyes, even in the heat and it lasts literally ALL day without flaking. It has a really strong hold and maintains the curl and look of my lashes. It is not a mascara that you can reapply or build on later in the night (you won't need to anyway), as it dries/set quite quickly once applied. By far my all time favourite mascara!
I would and have already repurchased this product.

Benefit They're Real! Mascara (sample) 
($38.00 at Myer Benefit Counters)

I admit I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with this mascara, but all in all it is a great mascara to use. When I first used it, I didn't really like it. It took a bit of getting use to as it's unique brush (looks like rubber spikes) was very different to what I would normally use. The formula is quite wet and the bristles on the wand really tickled my eyes. I really liked how this mascara emphasised, separated and lengthened my lashes. It gave my lashes a natural but slightly more defined look. The formula is very smooth and it's definitley buildable - you won't get clumpy spidery lashes which is fantastic for those of you who like to reapply by night. On me, I did find that the product would transfer a little underneath my eyes by midday.
I would repurchase this product.

Angelica Eyebrow, Face, Body Hair Trimmer 
(available from eBay - various)

I purchased this many many years ago somewhere in Asia - China/Japan. You can get them easily from eBay if you search "eyebrow or facial hair trimmer". I use it as an eyebrow trimmer/shaper and can't imagine life without one of these. It's very safe and easy to use and gets rid of those fine, unwanted hairs that tweezers can't grip onto. 
I would and have already repurchased a new one.

Acuvue with Hydraclear Plus Oasys Brand Contact Lenses 6 lenses 

These are fortnightly prescription contact lenses that I use. I wear contact lenses almost everyday, mainly when I am out of the house. I like the fortnightly ones because they don't dry out or irritate my eyes as often as the monthly ones that I used to use do. I can use and throw them away much quicker, therefore maintaining the moisture and hygiene of each lens. I've always got them stocked up, enough to last me about 6 months.
I would and have already repurchased this product - as prescribed by my Optometrist.

Monday, January 6, 2014

GIRL CRUSH | Elizabeth Olsen

She's the baby sister of powerhouse twins Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, and she's adding to the family talent and fame. With a successful and rising film career (breakthrough role in Martha Marcy May Marlene in 2011), Elizabeth 'Lizzie' Olsen has made a name for herself away from the spotlight of her gloriously famous twin sisters and among Hollywood's young and talented celebrities. Having taken on several daring film roles most young actresses her age haven't or wouldn't, the doe-eyed beauty has remained a humble and sweet personality despite her success.  

Blessed with natural, near perfect genes, Lizzie maintains an effortless casual chic look that I absolutely ADORE! She is often photographed looking very relaxed and makeup-free with a low key, comfortable but pretty look. At events/premiers she always looks so well presented; whether she is wearing a floor length gown or a trendy designer outfit off a catwalk runway Lizzie oozes with so much femininity; a mixture of sexy and cute. Not to mention her flawless glowing skin and hair...AND that huge infectious smile! 
She really is just that perfect, laid-back pretty girl next door...(major envy!)

You can catch Elizabeth Olsen next on the big screen in the role of 
Scarlet Witch in The Avengers: Age of Ultron in 2015.  


Thursday, January 2, 2014

NAILS OF THE WEEK | Goddess Gold

Hi Belles I'm back and a Happy New Year to all of you!

I've been rocking these sparkly gold nails this week leading into the New Year, and it has quickly become a festive favourite! I love how glamorous the shimmery gold colour looks and it has complimented almost every outfit. The polish is from Sportsgirl in the colour 'Goddess' and it has a lovely smooth finish. I applied 2 coats to really enhance the opacity of the gold sparkles and then topped it with a clear polish to maintain the shine. Applying one coat of the polish is also lovely, as you'll get a less opaque shimmery silver/gold colour. 

I really enjoy the Sportsgirl Nail It! range as they're very easy to apply, last quite a decent time on the nails and there are plenty of colours and finishes to choose from. This particular polish dried very quickly as well, which is always a bonus!

Products used: 
- Sally Hansen Hard As Nails Hardener $6.22 AUD (at Chemist Warehouse otherwise $12.45 at Priceline)
- Essence Studio Nails 24/7 Nail Base $2.95 AUD
- Sportsgirl Nail It polish in 'Goddess' $8.95 AUD
- Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat (not available in Australia, purchased in the U.S)

Sportsgirl Nail It! polishes are only available instore.