Happily I've finished another product from my Project Pan list - the above Dr Brandt Flexitone BB cream (reviewed here).

The reason I chucked this one on my PP list is that it was so inconsistent - sometimes it looked great, sometimes horrible and the wrong colour - that I was keen to get through it and use better products.

What I ended up doing with it was using it as a thin base above my primer, so I could put a better product over the top and use less of the better product since this cream offered a little coverage and sun protection without impacting the look of whatever I placed on top of it.

I'm glad it's gone and can now focus on products I prefer!

Here's what I've replaced it with: the Starlooks Lip Pencil in Peony that I received in one of my sub boxes. I've reviewed it here.

I do like this lip pencil because it's so creamy, it's just that I don't wear lip pencils because it's an extra step that I don't feel adds anything to my beauty routine. I tend to use lipsticks that last a long time on their own and don't feather, meaning lip pencils are redundant as far as I'm concerned.

But this one can be worn alone with a slick of gloss over the top, and I like the texture because it's not drying like many pencils can be and it doesn't tug when applied. The trade-off is that it doesn't last as long as other pencils, but I wanted to include it because it's smaller in size and I should get through it quickly, clearing another product from my stores.

I'll do another full PP update in the next couple of weeks because I have a few items on my list that should be done with soon, but I wanted to write this short update now so I could keep the list moving.

'Till then!

I received this makeup remover as part of a gift with purchase and, so far, it's the best item from the gift.

This is because it's one of the only makeup removers I've ever tried that successfully removes mascara. Hallelujah!

So many products I've tested recently have failed to dissolve eye makeup (whether waterproof or not), and I'd begun to feel that I'd never find one. I'm thrilled that I have, and I want to ration this product now because I don't want to finish it any time soon. Damn that it's a travel size!

Estée Lauder claims/product details:
  • Quickly and gently removes all makeup, even long-wear and waterproof formulas
  • Unique water-based formula refreshes with a crisp citrus scent
  • Rinses away easily and leaves skin feeling soft and smooth with no greasy afterfeel or oily residue
  • For all skin types
  • Dermatologist and ophthalmologist tested
  • To use: apply to dry skin and massage well; rinse or tissue off; follow with the rest of your skincare regimen
  • RRP $50 AUD for 200ml 


Thank god for products that actually do what they say they will!

If you read this blog, you may know that I've reviewed quite a few makeup removers recently and NONE of them has been able to shift tougher eye makeup like liner and waterproof mascara. This one does. Huzzah.

It's a white cream with a faint scent - I smell men's cologne, not citrus as claimed - and it's not unpleasant. I like the light, thin consistency and you only need a little to get the job done so the tube should last a good while. As claimed, it's not oily and it doesn't leave a greasy residue.

You apply it to dry skin, and it quickly dissolves your makeup with very little effort. It feels like makeup just melts off your face with only a small amount of rubbing from you.

Once applied, I feel a very slight tingling and cooling sensation that I like because it's refreshing. I've seen a couple of reviewers say that they don't like this effect, so if you have super sensitive skin I recommend testing this product before committing to the full size.

One thing about the usage instructions: I would use a wet makeup pad (rather than a dry one or a tissue as suggested) to remove this lotion because I think dry products are a little rough on the skin - particularly when you don't wet your face first - and I also think plain water isn't as effective as a wet makeup pad in removing the gunk that this lotion has shifted. That's all personal choice of course, but it's worth making the comment.

I've had a look online and the reviews of this product are generally very good. I also saw a couple of lasses say that they use this product to fix up any mistakes when applying their makeup, so I'll definitely be giving that a go since I often accidentally get mascara where I don't want to (my eyes are hooded) and I need something I can chuck on the end of a cotton bud to fix any black splotches.

All in all, this is a great product that lives up to its claims. I'm not thrilled about the price tag - despite that the 200ml bottle should last for ages - because I don't like spending that much money on things like makeup remover (since unlike eg moisturiser, it gets washed off anyway).

Aside from that, I can't fault this product. Woo!

We received this product in Marie Claire's Spring Edit of The Parcel (reviewed here).

I'm always up for receiving serums because I use and love them - plus I don't have a lot of back-ups in stock - but I'm also quite picky with them because I don't see their point unless they add something more than my moisturiser can deliver alone.

Unfortunately this particular serum isn't only useless on my skin, I also think it's quite bad and my skin is suffering from it.

Clarins claims/product details:
  • Our smart serum understands the particular needs of your skin, providing custom repair for the damage you see and the damage you don't
  • Targets multiple concerns including: diminishing lines and wrinkles; firming and lifting skin; reducing dark spots and evening skintone; addressing inflammation; and improving radiance and texture
  • For all ages and all ethnicities
  • To use: apply morning and evening before moisturiser
  • RRP $80 for 30ml; received 10ml sample

There's what it looks like above. You can just see the tiny shimmer particles within it, which have a slight brightening effect.

There it is blended out below (you can see the slight brightening effect from the shimmer particles here - a fake one because the serum itself isn't brightening at all!):


First, I want to comment on the whole 'custom repair' thing. The idea that a serum can 'understand' the particular needs of your skin and deliver help as needed sounds like absolute rubbish to me. Indeed, those who know more about these things have said that it's not even scientifically possible for a product to move where it needs to and adapt to different skins (see eg Paula's Choice).

Tall claims like that really annoy me. How dumb does Clinique think we are?

Leaving that bollocks aside, this is a bad product for my skin. It smells really off - like fermented fruit - and I hate applying it for that reason alone. I could probably live with the smell if the product was amazing, but my skin doesn't like it at all.

It's really drying on me and doesn't spread very well (I think because my skin is trying to suck moisture from it that just isn't there), and I need to use at least twice the amount of this serum as I do others, so it's not good value on that front. What's good about this is at least I'll get through the damn thing more quickly!

I've noticed no benefits as I would with a good serum: it's not brightening or hydrating; I've seen no effect on lines, wrinkles or dark spots; and it doesn't address inflammation - if anything it exacerbates it because it's drying and a little irritating on me.

Do note that I've seen other reviewers say that this product is irritating on their skin too - some say it burns, others say it made their skin flaky, others say that it gave them a rash or acne - so do be aware of this if you have sensitive skin (or even if you don't).

I would definitely test this one before committing to a purchase: it mightn't agree with your skin and it ain't cheap so I wouldn't be wasting my money on this unless I knew for sure that it would work for me.

All in all, this isn't a good serum on my skin and I don't think it meets any of its claims. Foo!

We received this product in September's Lust Have It (reviewed here).

I saw a photo of the item on Facebook before I received my box, and I wasn't going to open it because it was red and red doesn't suit me, but when mine showed up I thought I'd got a different colour since the coloured circle at the base doesn't look red but more pink.

Unfortunately it is indeed red and it's not a colour I'll wear, so I'm annoyed that I've opened it. 

Anyhoo. There it is:

UB claims/product details:
  • Promising you at least ten hours of anti-feathering wear
  • A water-based formulation that's transfer-proof and infused with vitamin B5 to provide that extra boost of hydration
  • Aloe vera extract soothes the lips
  • Highly pigmented 
  • Comes in six luscious shades that are universal enough for all skintones
  • Semi-matte texture
  • To use: apply a single coat for a sheer tint or double for an intense, luscious effect; can be used as a lip liner to accentuate the shape of the lips
  • RRP $23 AUD for 1.4g

Above are my bare lips for reference. Below I've applied two coats (I had to, to make things even) and taken a shot in direct sunlight:

Another one for good measure:


This is a good product. It doesn't deliver ten hours of anti-feathering wear, but it stayed put for 3.5 hours (when I ate) - after that it started fading around the middle and I had to remove it all because it looked uneven.

Interestingly, it stayed put for that long even though I put a gloss over the top. This is very unusual! Normally glosses tend to lift any underlying tint and make them transfer, but this one held fast. Impressive!

While it did transfer when I ate, it didn't for the few hours before when I drank. I was very surprised. The gloss I had on over the top did transfer, but this didn't shift or fade in colour at all until after the three-hour mark.

Note that I had to wear a gloss over the top because the product is super drying. While I do have dry lips, I think it was so drying that many would have this issue. I had to rush through my photos a bit because I was desperate to put a gloss over the top and soothe my lips.

On the claims: while it doesn't last for ten hours, it certainly lasts a long time and it doesn't feather; it is indeed transfer-proof for a good while; I don't find it hydrating or soothing (quite the opposite) but this can be managed by putting a gloss over the top; and it is pigmented and semi-matte in texture.

Overall, this is a great product that meets most of its claims. I'll pass mine on but only because the colour doesn't suit me.


Gosh I had such trouble photographing this product, and I've worked out it's because the tube is warped so it doesn't lie well and the angles of the container and print on the packaging don't match up. Annoying! But I'll live ; )

I received this product as a GWP with a Beauty Bay order a while back, and since I've managed to accrue a ridiculous amount of hand cream and have run out of body cream, I decided to use this as a body cream and delay a purchase.

Of course, when I use it this way it also gets used on my hands (and feet) at the same time, so I've got a good idea of how the product performs on all fronts.

Madre Labs claims/product details:
  • Our concentrated, moisture-rich and unscented hand cream helps rehydrate dry, damaged skin
  • Argan nut oil (high in vitamin E) plus a premium blend of select oils (rich in essential fatty acids) have been included to nourish and moisturise your skin
  • Leaves your skin feeling silky smooth 
  • Our proprietary blend of açai, goji, pomegranate and seabuckthorn helps protect your skin from oxidative and environmental damage
  • Contains no nasties
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • pH balanced
  • To use: apply as often as needed throughout the day and before bedtime
  • RRP $11 AUD for 71g (see eg iherb)


First, I do detect a slight scent with this product and it's a little off - it smells like yoghurt mixed with metal or something like that.

The scent doesn't bother me too much because it is very faint, but I've seen a lot of reviewers comment on the smell of this product and say they hate it: so if you have your eye on this because it's labelled as 'unscented', be aware.

Also, the second ingredient listed on the tube is alcohol - so I'm not sure why Madre Labs says this doesn't contain any nasties, because it does. If you're someone who's concerned about ingredients, I would read the ingredients list before purchasing this because it contains a few other things (like sodium benzoate) that you mightn't be happy with.

On the product itself, it's a thick white cream that takes a bit of work to rub in - both on my hands and on my body. Once applied, my skin feels greasy but not moisturised: if anything, it feels a little dry. This may well be the alcohol, since that ingredient has never agreed with my skin.

Overall, this is a pretty uninteresting product to me (even the packaging bores me) and it's not one I would buy. I prefer my handcreams to smell delicious, and this smells a little whacky.

Also, as far as I'm concerned, this cream doesn't meet its claims because it feels drying on my skin and leaves a slick residue that I don't like. Indeed as I write this, I can feel the cream on my hands and my fingers are slipping against my keyboard a touch - even though I applied the cream half an hour ago.

I'd avoid this one. At least I'll get through it quickly if I'm using it on my body as well as my hands!

I've received four Mellow products now via subscription boxes, and I've liked all of them.

This one showed up in August's Lust Have It (reviewed here), which was a reasonable box overall and one that contained things I'll use.

We also received a Mellow eyeliner in that box, so stay tuned for a review because I'm testing it at the moment.

About Mellow

I thought I'd say a little about the brand because it's relatively new and I was interested enough to look into the company.

The following info is taken from Mellow's website (see here) and you can check out the link for more info on the company and also to purchase its products.

Mellow was created with the pure passion and clear vision to bring high quality but guilt free makeup to every girl’s bag!

Our CEO Ima Asali ... wanted to create bold, luxurious and chic makeup products that every woman would want to use. She did her research and created the most wanted products in the industry.

Mellow's products are designed and tested in New Zealand [and are] cruelty free, vegan and paraben free.

Sounds good to me : ) 

Mellow claims/product details:
  • Highly pigmented and silky smooth powder
  • Applies and blends evenly
  • The long lasting and shimmering colours can be worn wet or dry
  • Free from parabens and infused with mineral powders
  • RRP $8 AUD for 4.8g

There's the colour above. It looks peach in the pan but when swatched it's more of a pearly white:

Below I've swatched it more heavily on the right and I've sheered it out on the left (photo taken in natural light):

And again in direct sunlight:

I've applied it more heavily this time, in the same way (photo taken in natural light):

And in direct sunlight:

I'm not sure how well the photos show that the product does contain a bit of noticeable glitter, which I'm not a fan of but at least it's quite finely milled and there's not too much of it.

There it is on my inner corner and lashline:

And I've applied it on my cheekbone as a highlighter below. It does emphasise pores but of course it's not designed to be applied to the cheek, and it's too cool-toned for my skin (plus there's the flecks of glitter) - but if pores aren't an issue for you and your skin is paler, this might work really well for you as a highlight.


This is a decent product and the $8 price tag means it's even more decent in my books.

It's silky, smooth and finely milled, plus it's super pigmented so a little goes a long way.

It's not the best eyeshadow I've used in terms of look, texture, feel and longevity, but at this price point it performs very well and I'd recommend it over other, more expensive shadows because it does a good job.

I've tried it both with and without a primer, and you don't need one to build intensity because it's so pigmented, but it does last longer with a primer (as all eyeshadows do), so I'd suggest using one if you're going to be out all day.

Like just about every eyeshadow I've ever used, it does transfer to my hooded upper eye area almost straight away (you can see that in the above photos) - whether with or without a primer - BUT it's actually not as bad as many more expensive eyeshadows I've used so I'm quite impressed with it for that reason.

I also haven't noticed much fall-out with this, although some of the glitter bits have a habit of shifting throughout the day as you'd expect, but again, this issue isn't as bad as it has been with other shadows.

Probably my only real gripe with the product isn't really a gripe at all (because everything comes down to personal preference), but this shadow isn't 'peach' when applied so if you're expecting some peachy goodness you may well be disappointed.

Instead of peach you get a metallic/reflective pearl white that doesn't work too well with my colouring, but it should work beautifully on those with paler skin.

I did ummm and ahhh about whether or not to keep this eyeshadow - not because I don't like it but because I don't reach for cool, reflective shadows like this very often - but decided in the end that I would because it'll be a good, multipurpose product to travel with. I don't like travelling with my really good stuff because my backpack gets knocked around something chronic, so this is now in the travel section and it will work as an eyeshadow that doubles as a highlighter.

Overall, a great product.

I received this product via Violet Box's 'build a box' and I was happy to see it because I had nothing like it at the time.

It's one of those 'all purpose' balms that seem to be appearing more and more often these days - kind of like paw paw balm.

I never really got into the paw paw stuff but I'm loving this product and it's one I would recommend.

I was going to review this product last week but then I (belatedly) noticed that it can be used for nappy rash, so I held off the review because my daughter had nappy rash at the time and I wanted to try it and see how it fared.

My golly, one application of this product and the nappy rash cleared up overnight!

Shizen claims/product details:
  • Our salve is your all natural soothing balm for skin protection for anything from cracked lips and sunburn to dry cuticles
  • Unlike petroleum based products (which act as a barrier), this all natural formula can be totally absorbed by the skin
  • Ingredients: castor seed oil, lanolin, shea butter, lemon myrtle oil, sweet almond oil, lime oil, vitamin E, chamomile extract, rose geranium oil
  • For all skin types
  • To use: rub over your nails and cuticles to soften, heal and condition the skin; smooth over eyebrows to help keep them in place and under control; apply to sunburn to soothe skin; massage over your dry elbows, knees and heels for soft, nourished skin; blend over your face for use under your foundation
  • RRP $19.95 AUD for 40ml


This is a great product and it's one I would buy.

It's a thick, yellow-tinted balm with a lemony scent. I don't mind the smell but I suggest testing this first if you don't like scented products.

I've been using it mainly on my feet because they're always dry and I love slathering something heavy on them after my evening shower. I have to say, this is one of the best balms of this nature that I've used on my feet - it hydrates them so well and makes them feel so soft - and I would buy it for that use alone.

I haven't had cracked lips or sunburn recently, but I can see how this product would be good for those things because it does feel soothing on the skin.

I have however used it on my nails/cuticles and on dry areas like elbows and heels, and it's definitely nourishing and really feels like it's being absorbed well.

I like that it's an all-natural formula that doesn't act as a barrier (unlike petroleum based products) and I can tell that it sinks in better than products of that nature.

I haven't tried it on my eyebrows or under foundation since I have other products for that, but I've seen other reviewers say they've used it for those purposes with success.

As mentioned above, the best thing I've discovered about this product so far is how quickly it cleared up my daughter's nappy rash - I couldn't believe it! Just one little application and the redness was gone by morning.

So often these days, products don't live up to their claims. It's nice to find one that does.


It's not quite the end of October, but we put our bins out last night and that always seems like a good time to photograph the empties and send them off to empties heaven.

It hasn't been a big month for me in terms of empties, and I suspect that trend will continue because I don't have so many products open as I once did - a good thing since I hated all that clutter in the bathroom!

Here's what I've finished:

Clarins Extra Firming Body Cream and Extra Firming Body Lotion

These tubes were both Mum's and I only used the ends of them, which is why I haven't written full reviews for them. She went to throw them out - saying she'd squeezed every last bit from them - so I grabbed them and cut them open, getting four full applications from each tube. This is why it's always a good idea to cut open tubes like this!

Anyhoo. I thought I'd like the body cream better than the lotion because I normally prefer heavier creams, but in this case I thought the lotion was the better product. It's much thicker and richer than a regular lotion and felt divine on the skin. I really enjoyed using it.

The cream was nice too, it was just a little thick for me and I found it quite hard to spread. Also, I felt the lotion was more hydrating - perhaps because it absorbed better than the cream did, due to its lighter texture. Purchase? Maybe for the lotion (not the cream), although I don't normally buy high-end body products because I can't afford them and would prefer to save my pennies for facial skincare.

Urban Skincare Co Daily Hand & Body Cleanser

Full review here. So this is interesting: I've been through two travel sizes of this product (and two travel sizes of the black version) and didn't like them because they didn't foam well or clean well.

BUT this tube fared much better - it foamed beautifully and felt velvety against the skin - and I considered updating my review to say that I liked the product more this time around, but decided that one out of three (or five, even) wasn't enough to change my initial review. Purchase? Probably not, although I'd like to test another tube to see if it's as good as this was.

Grown Alchemist Hand Wash in Sweet Orange, Cedarwood & Sage

Oh it's a sad day when I finish this product! Full review here. It was given to me as a present, and it's the best hand wash I've ever used. I wish it were cheaper : (

The citrus smell is refreshing, and the cedarwood and sage scents mean it's not too sweet and has a woody/herbal depth to it that I really like. The gel itself is smooth and velvety and feels wonderful on your hands, plus it cleans beautifully. It's my HG hand wash without question. Purchase? Yes, if I could find it on special.

Eslor Replenishing Scrub

I'm a huge fan of Eslor and this scrub was the first Eslor product I tested and then bought. Full review here. I've already been through another full size of this tub (plus a travel size and four sachets) and I have to say that this particular tub wasn't as good as the other ones - perhaps it was from a bad batch.

This scrub smells toasty and wonderful and leaves your skin looking fresh and feeling clean. For a long time it was my favourite face scrub, and my skin really loved it. The issue with this tub was that it wasn't as dense as the other batches I've tried (it had a more whipped texture that wasn't as rich) and it had less scrubby matter in it. I still liked it but I'm hoping it was a one-off and that Eslor hasn't changed the formula. Purchase? Maybe.

Estée Lauder Advanced Time Zone Age Reversing Line/Wrinkle Crème Broad Spectrum SPF15

This travel-sized tub came as part of a GWP and I quite liked it. I've reviewed it here. It's a lightweight, white cream that spreads well and absorbs easily into my normal/dry skin. 

One thing to note is that it does leave a slight greasy residue, which many people won't be happy with. I don't mind it because I'm always up for a bit of extra grease for my dry skin, but I wouldn't be happy with the greasy finish if I wasn't going to put makeup over the top anyway. It's not one I would buy due to the price tag (plus I've used better creams), but I certainly wouldn't knock it back if another one came my way. Purchase? No.

St Tropez Gradual Tan in Shower Lotion

This one annoyed the crap out of me before I even used it because of what you're meant to do with it. You wash yourself in the shower, turn the water off, apply this and leave it on for a few minutes, then rinse. I've reviewed it here.

At first it wasn't working too well, but I saw online that you're better off washing yourself, getting out of the shower and towel-drying, then leaving it on for five minutes before turning the shower on again and rinsing it off. I tried this and it did work better, but my golly how annoying again!

Give me a tanning body cream any day. Much less hassle. Purchase? No.

Urban Skincare Co Infuse Body Balm

Full review here. I've used quite a few of these travel-sized tubes now and I really like this product. It smells good - rich and gingery - and is super hydrating and nourishing. It's moisturising but doesn't leave a greasy residue, plus it absorbs and spreads well so a little goes a long way and this 35ml sample didn't vanish in a few uses (as some body creams tend to do). I have a few more travel-sized tubes in stock (we poached them from a hotel we were staying in ; )) so happily I won't need to buy it for a while! Purchase? Yes.

Alpha-H Micro Cleanse with Glycolic Acid & Rice Bran

I reviewed this in one of my sachet city posts and I didn't love it at first, but by the last two uses, the product had grown on me. It contains little beads to exfoliate the skin, and while I have other Alpha-H exfoliating products that I prefer, I'm glad I have a bigger tube of this on hand so I can get to know the product better and write a full review. Purchase? Maybe.

Darphin Exquisage Cream

This was a Mecca sample and I didn't love it. I've reviewed it here. It's a beautifully thick, velvety cream that feels wonderful on the skin. My issue with it is that it didn't absorb well and seemed to act more as a barrier cream instead of a moisturiser. Indeed, I ended up using it as an overnight mask, and I could still feel it sitting on top of my skin in the morning. Looks like I'm in the minority on this cream though, if the raving reviews on the Mecca website are anything to go by. Purchase? No.

In sum

This isn't my most exciting bunch of empties and the best product in the bunch by far is the Grown Alchemist hand wash. The Urban Skincare body balm is also lovely, and I'm keeping an open mind on the Alpha-H exfoliant.

Looking forward to seeing what I finish in November and clearing more space in the bathroom!

I recently finished off my day cream and my HG Alpha-H Liquid Gold with glycolic acid, and I had the option to open a few Suki products I have on hand, move on to my next round of Alpha-H skincare, or open the Mario Badescu kit I've had sitting around for a while.

After much ummming and ahhhing, I opted to go for the Mario Badescu kit, since I'd recently opened the face spray and cleanser from the brand and I like using products from the same line when I can because they're often designed to work together. Plus the kit contains travel sizes so I'll get through those more quickly and therefore feel like I've made a dent in my skincare stores ; )

This is what I'll be looking at in November:

 Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs and Rosewater

This is described as a refreshing, hydrating mist to use anywhere, any time. It's designed to be a pick me up for dehydrated, tight and uncomfortable skin. You can also use it to set makeup or spray on dry hair throughout the day.

I read about this product so many times online that I just HAD to buy it. Plus it only costs $9! I've seen some reviewers say that it's better than the ever popular MAC Fix+ - another reason I had to get my hands on one.

I've been using it on and off for a couple of weeks now and I do like it, and in November I'll dedicate myself to using it more often (and I haven't tried it on my hair yet), so I'll let you know how I go.

Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel

This is described as a non-foaming, gel cleanser that thoroughly removes the day's makeup, dirt and oil without drying the skin. It contains papaya extracts, which are exfoliating Alpha Hydroxy Acids that help break down dulling build-up, leaving skin fresh and healthy.

This product was recommended to me by a lass in Mecca Maxima, and since it only cost $16 for a huge bottle, I wasn't going to leave without one!

I've been using this too for a couple of weeks on and off, but in November I'll start using it daily and get a better feel for the product so I can review it. I already really like it, and suspect I'll like it more once I start using it more frequently and giving it a good test run.

Mario Badescu Anti-ageing Kit

This is a five step skincare regime that aims to actively reduce visible signs of ageing. It's designed for mature skin types and contains a cleanser, toner, moisturiser, face mask and sample eye cream in trial sizes and works to nourish, protect and soothe the skin. 

I went to Mecca Maxima to buy the Glycolic Acid Toner contained in this kit, which cost $24. When I saw that this kit contained the toner and cost $39, I thought I might as well buy the kit instead since it meant I could try more products and, if I didn't like the toner, I wouldn't be stuck with a full size to use up.

I opened this yesterday and I've only used the toner so far, but during November I'll introduce each item gradually so I can see what they're all doing both separately and together. Can't wait!

In sum

I always get super excited when I switch up my skincare routine, so I'm looking forward to giving these products a good go over the coming month.

I do have skincare products that work for me and that I keep coming back to, but it's nice to occasionally change things up and give your skin a break from the products you normally use.

Looking forward to reviewing these items soon! I've heard a lot of good stuff about Mario Badescu products, and you have to love that they're not expensive. 


Every now and then you come across a high-end product that's so bad it annoys the bejesus out of you - and for me, this is one of those products.

There's so much I don't like about it that I almost don't know where to start: I guess the fact that it does little to lengthen my lashes (so its name is rubbish) and also the fact that it flakes throughout the day are the main things that come to mind.

What I do like about the product is the packaging - it's luxe and sleek and classy - and I half-considered keeping it as a display item because I like the packaging so much.

I have kept 'lesser' products before because they look too pretty to give away, but this particular product is so bad that I can't even justify that.

Clarins claims/product details:
  • This revolutionary new mascara combines an instant strengthening formula and exclusive new brush design, making it an absolute must-have for lashes lacking in length
  • After 4 weeks of use, lashes increased in length by an average of 1.1mm (test conducted with 33 women for 4 weeks, measurements taken on bare lashes, average results)
  • To use: apply by combing lashes from root to tip, pressing against them slightly to accentuate their shape and maximise the lengthening effect
  • RRP $40 AUD for 7ml

I do like the brush because it's small and easy to use - and the brush normally maketh the mascara, but not in this case.

Smaller brushes are great for those of us with hooded eyes because we're less likely to get product all over our upper eye areas, which happens all too often with larger wands. This one's a great size and helps you get to those hard-to-reach places, but the formula itself is what lets this mascara down.

On the left I've applied one coat of mascara, and my right lashes are bare. You can hardly tell the difference! There's a little more definition and thickness, but that's about it.

Below is what happens when you apply a second coat. Not a good look! I really hate it when mascaras don't stand up to a second coat, and this one doesn't - it starts to look super unnatural and gloopy, and the second coat doesn't do much in terms of length either.

'Be Long' my proverbial ; )


Obviously I don't like this product and I'm sending it straight to a better home. If you already have long lashes and don't need something that stays put all day, you mightn't have as many issues with this product as I do, but all in all it's not a product I'd even bother testing again.

Just to rehash what I've said above:
  • This mascara does little to lengthen my lashes. It makes them a touch more defined and thicker, but that's about it.
  • The packaging and brush are lovely.
  • This product flakes unbelievably throughout the day. Indeed, I've never used a mascara that flakes this much and I'm turfing it for that reason most of all.
  • If you want to add a second coat of this mascara in an attempt to get some of the lengthening action happening, forget it. It looks clumpy, gloopy and unnatural in a heartbeat.

Another thing to note is that this product isn't waterproof. I took my dog to the park the other day and got caught in some very light drizzle on the way home. When I got back, I had mascara bits all over my face. Not a good look. The rest of my makeup was fine - only this product couldn't handle a few drops of rain.

In sum, this mascara doesn't live up to its lengthening claims and I don't recommend it for all the reasons mentioned above. As to whether it lengthens your natural lashes over time, I don't plan to use it long enough to find out - but I've seen other lasses say that they noticed no effect of this nature over time.

Rubbish. I'd avoid this one like the plague!

We received this in a recent edit of The Parcel, and I was glad to see it because I've been wanting to try coconut oil for a while (too many people have been banging on about it in cyberspace to ignore it!) and this seemed like a good place to start.

I'm happy to say that I'm enjoying this product and it's inspired me to go out and buy some pure coconut oil so I can give that a go too. First and foremost I love the smell of this product, but I'm also loving that it's multipurpose and my favourite use for it so far is to nourish my dry feet.

Redwin claims/product details:
  • With 100% certified organic coconut oil and an infusion of naturally moisturising papaya extract and jojoba oil
  • Soothes, relieves and moisturises
  • Naturally hydrates and relieves dry, chapped lips - and also helps heal them
  • Can be used as an intensive moisture boost on skin that's very dry and cracked, as well as on burns, cuts, and insect bites
  • Petroleum-jelly free
  • Cruelty free; 100% vegan
  • Free of nasties: no parabens, mineral oils, sulphates etc
  • To use: apply daily as needed
  • Shelf-life after opening: 24 months
  • RRP $5.99 for 25g


The smell of this product is absolutely divine and I love using it for that reason alone - it smells good enough to eat!

It's quite a thick balm that melts beautifully when warmed by the skin, so it spreads well and a little goes a long way. I'm glad that the shelf-life is 24 months because I reckon this little tube will last for ages. This adds even more value to the product because it's not expensive anyway, so what's a few dollars for something you'll have for a long time?

On the uses, I've tried it as a lip balm and didn't like it for that purpose because it has too much slip and falls off my lips too easily. It'd probably be fine for an overnight lip treatment, and I'll use it for that in winter if my lips are chapped (which I've read that it's great for), but I wouldn't use it during the day because I'd be applying it too often.

I saw one reviewer say that she uses this product as an overnight treatment because she has dry skin. I was a little reluctant to do this due to the balm's thick texture, but I did try it for that purpose last night just to see how it fared. My skin didn't suffer for it, but it didn't feel as soft the next day as it does with other overnight treatments I've used, so I won't use it this way again.

As mentioned above, my favourite use for it is as a foot balm. Like many of us, I have dry feet that are always in need of a little TLC, and this nourishes and hydrates them beautifully. Plus I only need to use the smallest amount to get the job done.

It's also good on cuticles, and I've seen a few people say that it's great at healing/soothing burns and insect bites, so it looks like those claims are true.

All in all, this is a great little product to have in the bathroom cabinet because it has so many uses - and it smells so divine. Plus it's cheap!


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