Skincare review: The Ordinary Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA

Time for the next installment on The Ordinary!

Alpha Arbutin is something that I definitely wanted to get, because who doesn’t want brightening and pigmentation fading? Arbutin is a key ingredient in many Asian skincare brands, but in here it is in a more powerful form Alpha Arbutin, and in a very high 2% concentration. The question is, does it work?

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My little girl’s grapes, just because.

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Skincare Review: Update on Retinoid 2%!

So I did promise that I would do an update in mid April, and here we are!

I am happy to say that I am right and my skin has cleared up lots. I only get my regular hormonal once a month freak out, and I would say they are a bit less horrible than usual. I get much less whiteheads and clogs in general, and almost no giant inflamed pimples (except those stupid deep hormonal ones once a month.)

Although my acne did stop being full blown before I started using the retinoid, I was having a LOT of texture on my chin, which is totally visible even after foundation and concealer.

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24th Feb timestamp, right before I started using the retinoid.

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Review: Kiko Radiant Touch Stick Highlighter in 101 Rose

I got this item several years ago when I was in Italy, before highlighting and strobing became all the rage. I LOVE Kiko Cosmetics, and they recently have become available in Hongkong (unfortunately only in stores), but it means that you can get your Kiko fix somewhere in Asia, at least!

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Review: Lime Crime Velvetine in Squash

So….. Limecrime! The face of internet controversy. I wouldn’t really buy from them, but I do think they have some very nice things, especially the Venus palette (which I have a dupe of) and the Venus 2, which, with its dirtier, grungier colour scheme, really calls my name. So when they were having a giant 75% off sale, I had to grab just one thing.

I’m not happy that this liquid lipstick costs as much as other standard liquid lipsticks and only has 2.6ml. I mean, sure, give me 2.6ml because I sure as hell don’t wear this everyday, but don’t charge me 20USD! Which is why I only bought this when it was 5USD. 2.6ml is less than half of a standard lip gloss/liquid lip, which is 6ml.

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How much concealer do you apply?

Title of the post says it all.

If you watch beauty videos on Youtube frequently, you’ll know that the very popular youtube gurus apply a shit ton of concealer, all around their eyes. Even people like Jackie Aina, whom I love for her biting wit, are guilty of it. Conversely, the gurus who favour more classic, clean looks, like Karima McKimmie (my fave!) don’t do it (as much.)

But we know that beauty gurus and instagram make up are hardly real life. (I sincerely hope.) So how much concealer do you use on a daily basis?

Day to day, I generally use the below amount on my undereyes:

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Skincare Review: The Ordinary 100% Organic Rosehip oil and how it changed my make up routine

This is the next installment in my series of The Ordinary reviews. This also happens to be something that helped me totally overhaul my make up routine, so sit up guys!

Rosehip oil is known for many skin-supporting functions. It is high in linoleic acid, which means it’s not greasy, and can even help acne. You can read Lab Muffin’s post for more information. In short, low linoleic levels may cause acne, so using rosehip oil can help to balance your skin and reduce the proliferation of bacteria. Its high linoleic acid content means that it’s also not ‘greasy’ feeling as most oils.

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Stunning natural lighting is everything.

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Review: Estee Lauder Pure Colour Lipstick in Tiger’s Eye

I recently saw Temptalia’s review on Estee Lauder’s Hi Lustre lipsticks, and noticed something very interesting. She reviewed Tiger’s Eye, which I actually do have!

Mine is the old version, obviously, with some kind of limited edition packaging. I found this in Bonjour in Hongkong a few years back, and it was going for something like $4. Since I think my makeup collection was a fair bit smaller back then, I did actually buy it. Let’s see what changes there are between the old and the new one!

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March 2017 Summary

Things bought:

Alien Essence Absolue: (review) Couldn’t resist after reading Renee’s review on Badoutfitgreatlipstick. Cost me $76, because perfume is expensive. Sigh.

2 sports bras from Forever 21: $24 I got bitten slightly by the athleisure bug. I mean, my casual style is decidedly not athleisure, but I would like to look good while running at 10pm, I guess?? After using the same 2 or 3 sports bras for….. 6 years, I bought a couple more. They’re a bit slutty and overtly sexy, yeah, compared to my very chaste previous sports bras, but I like it. Next month, I’ll probably buy a couple of nice tights too.

Miniso nail polishes: $3 little bit of an impulse buy, but they’re decent. Review here.

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Other spending: $15 for movie for 2, $3.20, $ 8 treat for a colleague who has left us.

Total: $129.20

I tried not to buy too many things this month, or at least, make up. Obviously my budget was blown by Alien Essence Absolue, which I totally absolutely freaking love so it was WORTH IT.

I wasn’t very interested in make up this month, because it was also a very busy month and work and I came home late a lot. However, I suddenly developed an interest in clothing again so I need to curb that.

Empties:

I finished this ancient body lotion. It’s tiny and seriously ancient. What can I say, I’m not a fan of body care.

I also finished a bottle of nail polish. It’s like, 5 years old and very gloopy. I only used it on my toes so the gloopiness isn’t too bad.

I also sort of finished a NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer. It’s too dry for me even though there’s still some left after I pulled out the stopper. My sister is still managing to use it somehow, but I’ve been on my new tube. I still love the peachiness, it’s perfect for the undereyes.

Total empties for the year: 10

Wishlist:

I’m in love with this white shirt because it reminds me of Lana Del Rey’s amazing white shirt in the below performance:

It’s not as slickly tailored as hers, but for $10 USD and free shipping to my country, it will do. One day, I’ll go tailor one exactly like hers, because white shirts, clean lines and great tailoring will forever be my weaknesses.

I also really like Atelier Cologne Ambre Nue when I last tried it on my skin. I hope to acquire it some day, but no rush.

I’m somehow quite into clothing nowadays, I think because I’ve lost a few chubby bits. It’s not good though, I should be extremely frugal instead.

Fragrance Review: Alien Essence Absolue

I am not ashamed to say that I bought it 100% blind, based on Renee’s review of it being lots of vanilla, I think in this post? I love vanilla, and on Fragrantica, it has a super high rating of 4.29/5. Thierry Mugler is not easy to find in Singapore, I think, only in DFS stores at the airport, but they don’t stock Essence Absolue. So blind buy it is! I had my dad bring it back from USA.

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Review: L’oreal Colour Riche Moist Matte Glamour Fuchsia

My lovely friend Jodulu sent me a beautiful gift box from L’oreal consisting of a few goodies from L’oreal… all the way in December before Christmas. So I’m super late to this review.

@jodulu partnered with #lorealxlazada to send me this AWESOME christmas surprise – a box full of #loreal goodies! generous sample sizes of their #hydrafresh range – genius lotion, face wash, cream and full size night mask. My favourite item is of course the lipstick, which is, surprisingly, a shade that I don’t own yet :p it’s the color riche in Glamour Fuchsia, but it’s more like a Pantone Radiant Orchid kinda shade. Quite matte, comfortable and doesn’t smell lipsticky like drugstore lipsticks can. Absolutely stunning. The large bottle of L’Oréal Elseve Extraordinary Oil shampoo smells divinely of roses. can’t wait to have bouncy shiny rose smelling hair!!!! thank you to @jodulu, Lazada and L’Oréal for making my day!

A post shared by Michelle Qiu (@michelleqiuky) on Dec 3, 2016 at 6:08am PST

 

As the box consisted of a full bottle of Elseve Shampoo, skincare things and a full sized lipstick in Glamour Fuchsia, it was obvious what was going to be my favourite, though I need another lipstick like a fish needs a bicycle.

(The shampoo is pretty damn nice too!)

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Don’t you think that L’oreal has really stepped up their packaging game? I mean, they ARE one of the most expensive brands at the drugstore. I believe this costs $21.90, because Singapore’s retail prices suck. I like the little colour window, because it helps if you have several L’Oreal lipsticks. The plastic is kind of light, yes, but for a drugstore brand the packaging is the bomb.

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When I saw this, I thought ‘Okay, I have at least 2 other fuchsia lipsticks,’ but this is nothing like that. I would say this is actually more of a Radiant Orchid colour on me.

The formula is pretty nice. This lipstick is natural matte, without being flat. It’s also quite pigmented and very smooth in one swipe. I think it’s a stretch to say it delivers ‘intense moisture’ like the ad copy, but it’s definitely comfortable.

Here’s comparing it to my other fuchsias…

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L-R: Maybelling Glamour Fuchsia, Kiko Metallic Lipstick in Fuchsia (DCed), and Life Entropy Lip Theory in Fusion (which is also no longer on the site 😦 )

Well… one doesn’t need 3 fuchsias. They don’t look very different on my arm, frankly, but you can tell that Glamour Fuchsia is the darkest and most muted, while Fusion is the lightest, brightest and warmest (as warm a fuchsia can go, anyway.) Kiko’s is the coolest, also due to the metallic blue shimmer in it. But like all fuchsia lipsticks, Glamour Fuchsia and the other 2 will stain your lips pink for the whole of the next day.

Glamour Fuchsia’s formula actually reminds me of Maybelline’s Creamy Mattes, which makes sense because Maybelline and L’oreal are both owned by L’oreal. They make mattes using silicones, so it feels very velvety on the lips instead of being dry and draggy. No longevity issues, no bleeding, comfortable wear.

On me, it reminds me of Radiant Orchid, a slightly brighter and more saturated version, maybe. Not quite what comes to mind when one says ‘fuchsia’, but that’s what makes it different from the other 2.

This is definitely not as bright and in your face as the other 2 fuchsias I have (which are VERY bright and in your face) but I do like it’s mutedness. I think it fits my complexion well too. The matteness and the mutedness giving it a more mature, glamorous vibe than the glossy shocking fuchsias I have.

I enjoy this lipstick very much, and would love to try the other colours in the line, so
I would call it a great success. Thanks lots to my lovely friend Jodulu, and Lazada and L’oreal for sponsoring the box!

(I got the items in the box for free, with no obligation to write about it.)