i haven't done a "favourites" post in ages, so this one not only features recent loves, but also some long time faves from the last 3 to 4 months or so.
i've been through a wild skincare journey this year. my skin was totally bonkers from the stress of my exams (resulting in an unhealthy diet and sleep circle and capricious hormonal activity), the last weeks i enjoyed this simple combo:
1 - Kosé Medicated Sekkisei - 360ml/71$.
is a good toner that i use as softener (dabbed/slapped on with the hands rather than used as a after-cleanse with a cotton pad) to bring extra moisture to the skin. i used it the last 6 months or so, some weeks of experimenting with other softeners inbetween. i didn't notice a big whitening effect, but it adds a lot of moisture to my skin, making it lush and bright. i prefer it to other softeners i tried (with hyaluronic acid for example) since this one sinks in completely free of any residues or film (unlike those mentioned before) and feels fresh and clean. the herbal scent needs to get used to. surprisingly my skin got along with this really well, although it does contain alcohol while it couldn't cope with heavy duty softeners such as Clinique's or Neutrogena's. i sometimes combine with moisturising serums or just use it as hydrator alone under a silicone based serum or facial oil.
2 - La Roche-Posay Effaclar K - 30ml/12€.
a moisturiser/treatment i started few weeks ago out of despair, i use this morning and night. my skin was just in a horrible state and for many people, this seems to be a big help. well, it's not moisturising enough for my skin oily skin, even in the summer, but i wanted to stay consistent and loyal to this product for at least 2 months to see full results. my skin seems to have regulated itself, it produces less sebum, i get less break outs, the pores became smaller.
3 - Olay Regenerist Resurfacing Night Elixir - 50ml/25€.
this product was sent to me by PR for consideration.
a gentle chemical peel with glycolic acid. this is my current overnight-exfoliator (i used Paula's Choice before but ran out), i use it about 4-5 nights a week. dark scarring from bad pimples fade quicker and my skin is softer and brighter overall.
1 - Louise Young LY34 Super Foundation Brush - £24.
the incredibly flawless finish this brush gives in combination with the Le Métier de Beauté Classic Flawless Finish Foundation is simply amazing. i just fell in love with it after i tried it with said foundation few months ago although i own the LY34 for over 2 years now. this brush is not as perfect with other foundations than the LMdB and vice versa, the LMdB is not as perfect when applied with other brushes.
2 - BeautyBlender - 15€.
what more to say about this long term staple of mine? was it ever not in my faves? anyhow, love it for the lighter foundations. feels fresh, is easy. better than any dupes.
3 - Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation - 30ml/£12.
once again, my skin got to a weird state when most foundations don't want to melt nicely into it but just sit around on the surface looking grainy and cakey. luckily in Bourjois' Healthy Mix i've found one that looks amazing on. it's exactly the amount of moisture my skin needs at the moment, so it evens out and refines my skin texture and has this healthy shine that makes me look like i had a good skin day. it has sufficient coverage but feels lightweight. even without setting powder it looks nice on me for about 6-7 hours in this hot weather.
4 - Le Métier de Beauté Classic Flawless Finish Foundation - 30ml/68$/£55/~70€.
i reviewed this foundation just a few weeks ago. it's big love, guys. flawless finish, great shade (the peachy undertone flatters my complexion so much!), longlasting. i can't wish for more.
5 - Dior Capture Totale High Definition Radiance Loose Powder - 11g/60€.
very fine powder that merges beautifully with the foundation (especially with the LMdB - together with the Louise Young brush these might be my holy trinity foundation-wise for 2012) and the skin. it has nice blurring qualities and smoothes your skin surface right after application. but about an hour later, the skin looks purely stunning. lush and healthy, as if you had 100% perfect skin and just applied a moisturizer. almost impossible, i even had to look twice into the magnifying mirror. glad that i rediscovered it after forgetting about it for a long time.
6 - Chikuhodo Z-1 Powder Brush - ~205€.
this is not just expensive, it's insanely expensive. but i don't regret it at all. honestly, i even prefer this to the legendary SUQQU Face Brush for face powder application. i owe the few of you, who are seriously thinking about purchasing one of these, a detailed review.
1 - Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronze Universel - 30g/41€.
sparingly used, this is perfect to bronze up the skin while giving some coverage at the same time. i like it for "cream-products-only" days when my skin feels dry, it has a very authentic glow.
2 - Edward Bess Ultra Luminous Bronzer in Daydream - 8.5g/£36/~45€.
great bronzer. natural result and so easy to use since it almost blends on its own.
3 - Le Métier de Beauté Kaleidoscope Blush Kit - 14g/£75/~95€.
i've been playing with all the different layering possibilities of this one. it's fun and the results are lovely. more on that in a future review.
4 - Givenchy Le Prisme Visage Bucolique in Bucolic Blossoms - 11g/43€. LE.
i showed you how i use this finishing powder as highlighter in my ulzzang makeup tutorial. it contains different pale pastels to antagonize dullness, redness or sallowness in the skin. i just love that it's basically a correcting powder palette, you can use the colours mixed together but also each on its own for a selective effect. and it looks so gorgeous! i always fall for Givenchy's sprinkled powder designs.
5 - Burberry Light Glow No.07 Earthy Blush - 7g/38€.
p.e.r.f.e.c.t. cheek contour shade for me, the texture is divine.
__________cheek brushes a.k.a. the black beauties__________
using over 750€ worth in brushes only for the cheek area - that's brush decadence, condensed to the highest level. but please don't judge, i just live once ;)
i'm an extra bad evil blogger since i often declare my love for these treasures but even haven't given them a proper review on here yet, oops ^^
these brushes are soooo good. *pets Chikuhodo Z-9, tilts head back, rolls the eyes and sighs...* you can imagine that i have this typical brush-reviewer orgasm right at this moment. no seriously, it's that good.
1 - Chikuhodo Z-9 Powder Brush - ~205€.
i apply powder bronzer to the perimeters of my face with this brush. it replaces the Paula Dorf Powder Brush i always used, but is like 10 times better (not to defame the Paula Dorf brush, it's an amazing tool!).
2 - SUQQU Face Brush - ~230€.
this icon is degraded to occasional contouring or blushing work now. need to find a bigger task for it but the shape is awesome for first-layer-contouring (--> ulzzang makeup tutorial).
3 - Chikuhodo Z-2 Highlight Brush - ~100€.
this is both perfect for contouring (when i used the SUQQU Face Brush, this does the second layer.) and highlighting.
4 - Chikuhodo Z-4 Cheek/Highlight Brush - ~100€.
my first Chikuhodo, i'm lucky to have snatched it at bargain price & perfect condition in a blogsale (forevermore, i'll be thankful that Kate is so minimalistic and reasonable). i've never not-used it for blush since its first wash at my home.
5 - SUQQU Cheek Brush - ~110€.
my former blush brush love plays the role as layering brush now. it puts a beautiful sheer veil of fine shimmer over already blushed cheeks.
1 - Maybelline Cream Eyeshadows in On and on Bronze and Permanent Taupe - 8€.
very good drugstore cream shadows, the colours are lovely (On and on Bronze) and unique (Permanent Taupe).
2 - Rouge Bunny Rouge Longlasting Eyeshadow in Periwinkle Cardinal - 2.4g/£22/28€/34$.
my favourite summer-colour for this year. a bit out of my comfort zone but still super wearable and easy to combine.
3 - Burberry Sheer Eyeshadow in No.22 Pale Barley -2.5g/25€.
this must be one of my favourite eyeshadows of all time. so pretty. sooo good.
4 - L'Oreal Color Infallible in Magnetic Coral - 3.5g/£7. LE.
very out of my comfort zone, it's not only not-neutral but colourful, it's even a red-tone. makes it all the more exciting!
5 - MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack - 3g/19€.
i've tried a few other ones but still always come back to my trusty, old (literally, i need a new one.) Blacktrack. i only use it for the upper waterline&tightlining. on the lids, i have some transferring issues with this.
6 - Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Silk Eye Shadow in #28 - 4g/30€.
well on the way to become an all time fave. love the almost glossy, complex pinky-bronze glimmer.
7 - MAC Nail Lacquer in Soirée - 10ml/13€.
i really enjoyed the contrast of foil shimmer and smooth creme finish in a half moon ruffian manicure (like here), this was my favourite base to go with deep navy, black purple and so on.
8 - K-Palette 1 Day Tattoo Real Lasting Eyeliner - ~12€.
best black liquid liner i've ever used. very precise, very easy to manoeuvre, very good staying power.
9 - K-Palette 1 Day Tattoo Real Lasting Eyebrow - ~16€.
this liquid brow pen was like an epiphany to me. made my brows look neater than ever.
10 - Chanel Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss in #52 Génie - 8g/30€.
great peach gloss for soft colour and sheer, but even coverage without creeping into lip lines. i really like the texture of these.
of course i loved my eyeshadow palettes as well, the stars amongst them are SUQQU Blend Color Eyeshadow and Guerlain Écrin 6 Couleurs, of each i own 4 (wouldn't mind to get the whole range, though!).
still need to review these SUQQU gems! i have:
at least i have reviews for these ;)
#2 Place Vendôme
#29 Rue de Sèvres
#68 Champs Élysées
#93 Rue de Passy
1 - Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush - ~65€
so smooth, so soft! it's unimportant what colour it applies, this is a treat for the lids.
2 - SUQQU Eye Brush L - ~65€
same here as above. as good as it gets.
3 - SUQQU Eye Brush M - ~65€
again, incredibly luxurious feel. amazing for the outer corner/other detail work.
4 - Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush - £32/~40€.
this is also one of my all time favourite tools. i haven't found a better (in terms of effectivity) blending brush than this. everyone needs an Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush in their life.
♪♫ i wanna be a billionaire, so f*cking bad. buy all of my readers Edward Bess... ♪♫
5 - Hakuhodo G5529BkSL Eye Shadow Brush round - 21$.
for a long time, i didn't have a proper use for this, but now it's my Aegyo Sal brush and i'd never want to miss it again! i was lucky to already own the right tool when i started contouring my Aegyo Sal (--> ulzzang makeup tutorial). and what's nicer than a blue squirrel brush extra for this 0.2cm² of skin?
6 - Hakuhodo K005 Eye Shadow Brush round and flat - 18$.
is there a step up from perfect? because only that could describe how this brush relates to the upper waterline/tightlining.
there are some other products that i liked or haven't used long enough to include with the real favourites ;)
1 - Louise Young LY31 Angled Brow Sable - £13.
trusty brow brush. i'm so used to this brush that i haven't even looked around for a better alternative. will get the Chikuhodo Z-6 though.
2 - MAC 242 Shader Brush - 27€.
workhorse lay-down brush. handles those hybrid eyeshadows like Giorgio Armani or Chanel Illusion d'Ombres very well. however, i must change to Shu Uemura's Sable and Kolinsky brushes as soon as possible. (The Black Panties' arguments are mouthwatering)
3 - Trish McEvoy #29 Tapered Blending Brush - 32$.
perfect shape for a quick and easy outer V/crease shading, it does all the work for you.
4 - Le Métier de Beauté Concealer Brush - £42/~53€.
haven't used it often enough, i always forget to about it (it's so short and gets lost in my brush stand) and quickly blend with my fingers or Hakuhodo 212. the times i did, surprisingly i really enjoyed this classic shape. it's almost something new to me since i already started out with the fluffy brushes back then.
5 - MAC 181 Small Kabuki - 40€. LE.
this is the old version of this brush (not the scratchy crappy SE version that came with various Mineralize Kits). exceptionally soft (for MAC) and good quality. its only use is for the Chanel cream bronzer, but this job it does quite well.
6 - Hakuhodo G5552 4mm Powder & Liquid Brush round/angled - 45$.
this is like your-fingers-but-heaps-better for cream blush. loved the combo G5552 ♥ Nars Cactus Flower on those "cream-products-only" days.
7 - Yves Rocher Watercolour Effect Blush in Corail Nude -7ml/3€. LE.
i was on the stain-train for a while, then proceeded to the Glossy Stains and the sort. but the simple liquid/gel stains are still best for a natural, fresh look --> ulzzang makeup tutorial.
i love my new layout! i'm so happy that everything looks like i wanted and i did it all myself. still want to change the appearance of the search box and email-subscription box, sigh... (can anyone help?).
i'm so relieved that blogger now includes the "open in new tab" function in the editor when one includes links, so i don't need to insert target="_blank" into the html code every time! (have i mentioned that html is my hate of the month?)
on another note:
♥♥♥ THANK YOU! ♥♥♥
you're awesome. LEGEN...wait for it...DARY.
a big, big, BIG love: my new camera set up. i got it as small reward for graduation (i chose camera over iPad). not only does it push me to get creative and finally make good use out of the functions of a DSLR (i was always to lazy and reluctant to look into such stuff when i used the 500D from my brother), it also is a big help for blogging. the tripod, the RC release and the tilty-swively screen make self-portraits and eye makeup close-ups so much easier.
i really enjoy photography now. downside: lenses are far more expensive than makeup/brushes. therefore the photography budget rivals with my makeup budget. only loser: me, because i want it all.)
for those who are interested, i use a Canon 600D/Rebel T3i.
RC release: Canon RC-6
lenses: Canon EF-S 18-55mm 1:3.5-5.6 IS, Canon EF 50mm 1:1.8 II, Sigma DG 70-300mm 1:4-5.6
tripod: Joby Gorillapod Hybrid
my biggest favourite of the year (or maybe the last 7 years? ^^) is to finally graduate from med school. woohoo! i treated myself to the Chikuhodo brushes if you wondered XD
what made you happy?
EDIT: quick note on the short RSS feeds issue: it seems like email-subscription still gives you full feed length. maybe that's an alternative to normal RSS?