You may have heard me mention that I bought a truckload of Antipodes products in the Priceline skincare sale back in January. It's something I'd wanted to do for ages, and I made sure to get there early so I could buy a good chunk of the available range before it sold out.

Slowly I've been introducing and reviewing each item in turn: next up is this Hosanna serum.

Long story short, it's not terrible but I don't recommend it and I wouldn't buy it again.

I won't bore you with all my review links for Antipodes products but I will give you those for my two favourites to date, these being the Avocado Pear Night Cream (reviewed here) and the Chia & Kiwi Seed Serum (reviewed here).

I also really enjoyed the eye cream (reviewed here) and it's one of the better eye creams I've tried.

Antipodes claims/product details:
  • A water-charged serum that immediately plumps thirsty skin while helping to intensively improve your skin's appearance over time
  • An oil-free bioactive organic serum that delivers pure hydration to skin cells
  • Contains vinanza grape, an antioxidant that helps protect and build resistance to damage caused by environmental aggressors and pollutants
  • Extract of mamaku black fern helps foster cell renewal, to encourage plump, healthy and youthful skin
  • Its plumping action supports collagen production; independent scientific investigations show impressive results: Hosanna significantly stimulates synthesis of Type I collagen in human fibroblast skin cells by up to 72%
  • Pure plant fragrance: rose and cardamon
  • Suited to all skin conditions, especially water-deprived
  • Use daily for immediate hydration and the best long-term results
  • RRP $49 AUD for 30ml, but do shop around


I don't love this product but it's not terrible and I have similar feelings about this one as I did the Antipodes Apostle Serum (reviewed here): basically, it's passable but it doesn't do much.

It's a thin, watery product that's super lightweight - so if you prefer thinner serums like I do, this might appeal. It's orange-brown in colour and it indeed smells of rose and cardamon, but the scent isn't strong and I'm pleased about this because I'm not big on either of those scents.

What's good about this product is that it spreads well and absorbs instantly, given how thin it is, so I have no concerns that it's coating my skin or interfering with my moisturiser's ability to absorb. This is how I like my serums so that's a plus.

Unfortunately, though, that's the only thing I like about it.

I've been using this at least once a day - often twice - for around three months now, and I think that if it were going to offer any cumulative benefits over time, it would have done so by now. So it's safe to say that this hasn't done anything for my skin. 

Also, what bothers me most about this serum is that it's not hydrating in the slightest, so my skin always feels dry after use and I've needed to use an oil in the morning to combat the problem. I normally only use oils at night, so that's telling you something.

Oh, and the plumping? No, no. No plumping for me in sight.

Also, reading through the product claims has annoyed me a little. Here's why: no it doesn't 'immediately plump thirsty skin'; no it hasn't been hydrating in the slightest, nor does it make my skin look healthy or more youthful; no it hasn't improved my skin's appearance over time; and no I personally don't think it's suited to 'water-deprived' skin.

I can say this because my skin is dry and dehydrated so I need hydration and nourishment more than anything, and I could definitely do with some plumping action because I'm 37 so I have fine lines that I'd hoped this serum would target - at least temporarily - but it has not.

Also worth noting is that I've read some online reviews of this product and plenty of people have said that it's not plumping or hydrating at all (and it leaves their skin feeling tight), and some of those reviews are from people with normal or oily-combination skin - so you can imagine that it's definitely not a good one if your skin is dehydrated and dry!

Overall I don't like this product and I don't recommend it. Still, it has been a good 'carrier' product for the lactic acid I've just introduced from The Ordinary (I'm bringing that in slowly by adding a drop to this Antipodes serum on alternate evenings), so at least there's a use for a plain, doesn't-do-anything serum like this.

Doesn't hit the mark.

Hello and welcome to September's Pan that Palette update!

It's been a pretty tough panning month for me: I'm getting over my palette now and I'm also at the point where some of my powders are getting so old and crumbly that it's time to stop beating a dead horse and say goodbye to some of them. 

The oldest powders I have in my palette are from 2014 and while many are from 2015, I feel that it's time to accept that I've had some really good use from many of them, and it's time to move on to other things.

For this reason, I've decided to wrap up Pan that Palette 2017 now. I've exceeded my original goals and I would rather focus on Project Pan and Project Dent for the rest of the year.

Anyhoo! Let's have a look at my September progress.

First up, my Stila Custom Contour Duo in Medium. Here's how it looked at the end of August:

And here's how it's looking now, at the end of September:

Yes it's true, I've finished it! Now before you think 'there's no way you could finish a contour shade within a month' (because I'm sure most people couldn't), what I eventually did with the dark shade was mix it in with my body cream. 

For most of the year I was using it for contouring, but when that was getting me nowhere fast, I started mixing it in with my moisturiser to add a bronze glow beneath my tinted moisturiser. I loved it for that purpose, but a few days ago I had a 'bugger this' moment and I used the small amount remaining mixed in with my body cream.

I did this because the product has a 24-month shelf-life and I passed that recently, and although it hadn't changed texture and it was still safe to use, I'd had enough and it was time to speed things along. I suppose you could call that cheating a little, but I've been working on it all year and I think we can forgive me (I hope!) for pushing the palette out the door in the fastest way possible ; )

Next up, my Z-palette.

Here's how it looked at the end of August:

Here's how it's looking now:

 Let's look at each half of the palette. Left side first, end of August:

End of September (and I've enhanced this shot for clarity, hence the colour changes):

So, most of the Stila pans look the same (although I have used them all a few times), minus the matte grey and Sunset, which I've used a lot this month. Some of the grey was thrown into the Nars pan that's now been filled with a new shade I mixed from other shades in the palette.

Re the Nars pans, I've cleared out the bottom one and the one I've recharged is a mix of the aforementioned Stila grey, theBalm's Hot Mama blush (discussed below), the rest of that dirty gold GA-DE pan (centre bottom) and also some of the brown medium pan (also discussed below). I did this because the shadows were so crumbly/flaky that I kept losing product, so I decided to throw the chunks into one pan. It's a nice colour and I have used it quite a bit, but the pigment is no longer there so I need to build it.

There's also more pan showing in that middle GA-DE pan, and it's another shade that crumbles so it's easy to make progress even though I don't use it that much.

I've re-pressed the cream Becca round pan, and I'll likely throw it into Project Pan because it'll be easy to finish.

Now for the right-hand side of my palette. Here's how it looked at the end of August:

And here's how it's looking now after one month of use:

There's not much visible progress in the four pans at the bottom (the matte is Becca and the other three are Ardency Inn), although I have used them all a few times each.

The two Stila pans above those: these were the ones I mixed using Nars Charade and Stila's Night Sky, and I do love the shade but I don't use it that often. I have expanded the pan on one of them though.

As for the top row, the brown shade I mixed myself is at the point where it's ready to go. I've made good progress though, so I'm happy with how far I've taken it. 

The highlighter from theBalm that's a mix between Cindy-Lou and Mary-Lou (I re-pressed them together) is still going strong, but I do use it daily on the collarbones so there is some progress.

As for theBalm's Hot Mama, that's also ready to go. It's the oldest powder I own and it's crumbling everywhere - which is why there's so much progress - so I'm happy to send that packing too.

In sum

What I'll do over the next few days is a Pan that Palette 2017 wrap-up, and I'll also give you a photos-only post so you can see how I went month-by-month for the whole year.

What I'll also do is scrape out any powders that are too old, and I'll retain those for my daughter to use as paints. As for the remaining powders, they're still fine so I'll keep playing with them occasionally - but I'm ready to stop using them often and it's time to focus on other shadows.

That's all from me! Hope all's well with you, and speak soon x

I'm back with another Project Dent post today, after having wrapped up my last two rounds yesterday. Reason being, I'm keen to work on this product before introducing my next bronzer to Project Pan - so best I sneak this one in now.

Also, this is my favourite bronzer of all time. Not only does Hourglass make my HG formula for bronzers, but this particular shade is my favourite because I feel it's the best colour for my skintone.

I've owned this bronzer ever since it was released in Australia. I couldn't tell you the exact date, but they were in-store in May 2015 in the US, so let's assume I bought mine around July/August of the same year.

Since then, it's stayed at the top of my bronzer list. So why oh why haven't I reviewed it?! Silly me. I have however reviewed Luminous Bronze Light: see here if you're interested.

What I plan to do over the next couple of weeks is use this bronzer daily to see how much progress I can make. I may even use it for a little longer than that, depending on how long it takes me to finish more products and bring in my next bronzer to Project Pan.

I'll also review it during that time, and I'll be able to give you some comparison swatches between this shade, the aforementioned Luminous version, and also Nude Bronze Light - which I recently bought but haven't used yet.

If you're familiar with Hourglass products (or indeed any domed powders), you'll know that they don't show progress very easily. But you should be able to tell from the above and below photos that it has been flattened over time. 

Out of interest, I did also compare it to my new Nude Bronze Light - and I was surprised to see that there is a big difference between them. I honestly thought I'd barely made a dent in this one! But I have, which I suppose makes sense because I do use it heaps and always have.

So, here's how my bronzer looks as of today, 29 September 2017 (indirect sunlight):

Enhanced for clarity:

Direct sunlight: 

Enhanced for clarity:

So, what I'll do over the next fortnight or so is use this daily to see how far I can get in terms of progress. I may be able to flatten the surface a little more, but I'm not holding my breath because this particular shade is super pigmented (and darker than Luminous Bronze Light) so I only use a little each time. 

I'll also try it on the eyes - I don't think I've done that yet - which will help speed things along.

That's all from me! Hope all's well with you, and speak soon x

Earlier today I did my Project Dent update on my Hourglass Surreal Light Palette (see here), and now I'm back to do my update post on this Hourglass bronzer.

I've been denting them together because I've finished the bronzer pan in the palette (mainly because I didn't get enough brown so I was using it as a setting powder), and indeed I may end up throwing them both into Project Pan or Pan that Palette next year so I can get through them.

I've also decided that I'm going to wrap up both Pan that Palette and Project Pan early this year. I might do both for another month and see how I go, but I'm just about ready to free myself up to use whatever I want to for a month or two before Christmas, then I'll bring both projects back for 2018.

Also, I'm quite keen to dent more of my products before the end of the year, so if I wrap up Pan that Palette sooner rather than later, I'll have more space to do that.

Anyhoo! This bronzer. I've dented it before. If you'd like to see my last update post, it's here.

I've also reviewed it: see here if you're interested.

And here's my intro post for this round of Project Dent.

So, here's how my bronzer looked back on 17 September 2017, when I reintroduced it to Project Dent:

And here's how it looks today, 28 September 2017:

Below I've enhanced the above two shots for clarity.

Here's how it looked on 17 September:

And here's how it looks today:

So, you can really see the difference in the surface bubbles/texture and the product has also been visibly flattened - or perhaps I can just see that because I know it's happened.

Denting this bronzer again has made me realise that it won't be too difficult to pan: not only is it a mini, but I do need to build it quite a bit to get it to show up well on my skintone (unlike Radiant Bronze Light, which is so pigmented that I need to be more careful).

This is also my favourite formula for bronzers, and while I prefer Radiant Bronze Light on me, this one in Luminous Bronze Light is still a pleasure to use so I'll really enjoy panning it.

Now, to pick out my next item for Project Dent. I may well pick Radiant Bronze Light because I haven't even reviewed that yet, and better to dent it now before I do introduce this mini to Project Pan...

Hope all's well with you, and speak soon x

Well, I sat down to write a review post today and I don't feel like it - it's been three bad nights in a row with my baby son - so I've decided to do my Project Dent updates. I'm due for those anyway, so why not.

First up is this Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit in Surreal Light. I have dented this before so if you're interested in seeing my last update post, it's here.

I really love this palette, which is lucky because I bought two of them (!). If you're interested in seeing my full review, it's here.

Let's get straight into the progress shots.

This is how my palette looked two weeks ago, on 13 September 2017:

And here's how it looks today after two weeks' daily use:

Below I've enhanced the above two shots for clarity.

Here's how my palette looked two weeks ago:

And here's how it's looking today, 28 September 2017:

As you can see, there is some progress but not a lot. I can see changes in the surface of all the shades except for the bright blush (top right).

The setting powder looks flatter and I can see changes in the air bubbles on the surface; same goes with the nude blush (top centre).

The highlighter (bottom right) now has a dent showing in the middle of the pan: this is because I focused my brush there when I used it on my eyes.

What's left for me to decide now is whether I want to dent this or my 2014 Hourglass blush palette next year. In some ways the blush palette would make more sense because it's older, but I'm not sure that I can still buy Incandescent Electra separately. It's now available as a strobe blush (they're too shiny for me) but I can't see it available as a standard blush so I don't want to finish it because it's my favourite blush of all time. 

We'll see.

Hope all's well with you, and speak soon x

I received this liquid bronzer in a Mecca Beauty Loop box ages ago and recently moved it to my Project Pan list because I just wasn't using it and I would like to get through it.

Long story short, it's a good product and I like it not only for bronzing but also to darken any foundation that's too pale for me, so it's a good multipurpose product and it hopefully shouldn't take too long to get through.

Now before you think 'oh that mini 4ml sample isn't enough for a review', I can tell you that it is.

I used it for about a week a while ago in one of my samples posts, and I've now been using it for another ten days straight - during which time we've seen all sorts of weather in Melbourne (typical spring) and I've had the opportunity to test it with different bases, different primers, under powder and over powder, and also as a mixer.

And even with all that testing, I've barely made a dent in it. I wouldn't want to attempt to finish a full size!

Nars claims/product details:
  • A featherlight liquid version of NARS cult-favourite Laguna powder bronzer
  • Inspired by Motu Tane, a small Tahitian island located just off Bora Bora
  • A sheer, universally flattering liquid bronzer in a warm brown shade
  • Enriched with Monoï and Tamanu oils, and vanilla extract for moisturising and antioxidant benefits
  • RRP $58 AUD for 30ml

The sample comes in a little glass bottle with a nifty spatula applicator and I just realised that I'll be keeping mine so I can squirt my bundle of Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer sachets into it. The mini bottle I have of that primer is useless because you can't get to half the product - but this bottle will do nicely.

I digress ; )

Now for swatches.

Below I've done three swatches: heavy, partially blended and sheer.

Direct sunlight:

Natural light:


I wasn't expecting to like this because Nars products overall have been hit-and-miss for me, and I also prefer powder bronzers over creams and liquids because I find those faster and easier to apply.

While it's still true that I prefer powders, I have been enjoying this and I do recommend it if you prefer non-powder products: I'm yet to make an error with it because it blends beautifully and it's very sheer, so I haven't worried about clown-face because you can build it up and diffuse it very easily.

When they called this a liquid, they weren't kidding: it's as liquid as water and I was surprised at first by how runny it is. It also doesn't have a scent so it should suit those who don't like fragranced products.

I apply this with the applicator and then use my fingers to blend it out. I'm sure you could use a brush or a sponge, but that's my preference. Fingers always are. When I use this, I tend to just use a little bit to slightly bronze my skin, though I have sometimes built it for more impact and it builds well on itself so that's a plus.

One thing to note with this product is that it's got a huge amount of gold shimmer in it. Yes it's finely milled and yes I can't see huge chunks of glitter on my face, but I can see little flecks and if you want to wear a light coating, I find that the gold overtakes the brown whenever you walk into even a small amount of natural light (so forget direct sunlight). 

You may be able to notice that, in the above swatches, the glitter is more noticeable in the sheerest swatch. The same applies to putting this on the face and it's only when you build it that more of the brown shows through.

What this effectively means is that, in most lights, a sheer coating tends to look like you're wearing a gold bronzer and not a brown one. For this reason I think it looks better when you use a little more, but I don't always want to do that so what I've found myself doing is applying a sheer layer of this, then going in with an Hourglass bronzer over the top since I prefer the finish of those anyway.

This has a nice finish - dewy, healthy and never dry-looking - but you can't beat the way Hourglass powders airbrush the face and manage texture.

In other news I've tried this with different foundations and tinted moisturisers, and it blends well over all of them. I've also applied it a few times over my setting powder and haven't run into any issues with blending it out. Some liquids and creams won't blend well over powder, but this one does.

Probably my favourite use for it, though, is as a mixer for any base that's too pale for me. I need to use a fair amount to change the colour because it's not super pigmented, but I like the way it thins out my formulas (so I can get an even sheerer coverage if I want to) and doesn't change the performance of the foundation. It also adds a little warmth and radiance to any base I've tried it with, so potentially I would buy it just for that purpose if it wasn't so expensive.

It's also worth noting that it lasts better if you set it (most things do) and it does tend to slip off the face faster when it's hot (again, most things do).

Overall I do like this product but it's not one I would buy because I prefer powders. Still, I'm getting plenty of use from it while I have it and I'm enjoying it in the process, so that's the main thing.

Worth testing. Unless of course you've sworn off Nars because it's no longer cruelty free.

I suspect that most beauty-lovers have heard about this fabled setting powder: every man and his dog seems to love it and it frequently shows up in favourites posts and videos - perhaps in part because it's so reasonably priced.

I'd been wanting to try it for ages but I had other setting powders to get through first, so once I'd done that, I went ahead and ordered it. I've been using it for months now and I'm pleased to report that the hype is warranted. More on that below.

Long story short, yes it's great but yes the packaging is ridunkulous. I mean, why? Perhaps it's very cheap to make, which helps keep the cost down.

It's like a salt and pepper shaker, but the holes in the cap are so large that they spill product everywhere. That's an easy fix though, and it's certainly not a reason to dismiss it: like many, I dispensed some of mine into an old sifter container that I'd saved for that purpose and the problem was swiftly solved.

RCMA claims/product details:
  • Beloved by makeup artists and beauty editors alike, RCMA No Colour Powder is a cult-classic staple for everyone's makeup kit 
  • Suitable for all skin types, skintones and occasions
  • Has no filler or pigment, so it will not alter the colour of your foundation
  • Lightweight and finely milled
  • Sets your base invisibly, leaving a silky smooth finish
  • Designed to be cake-free
  • The weightless texture buffs effortlessly into the skin without leaving behind an ashy cast 
  • RRP $27 AUD for 85g, but do shop around

There's the dastardly packaging above and below. You can see how the whole arrangement just isn't going to end well. I did try using it as-is for a while and all it did was spill too much powder out each time so I had to keep putting the excess into a separate, empty container I had on hand.

I didn't use it like that for long and it's a lot easier to just dispense it into any container that works. Also, if you just dispense enough for a month or two each time, then you're not exposing the rest of the powder to air every day when you open the cap - a good thing, since there's a lot of powder to get through.


This is an excellent product and I recommend it. Packaging aside, I can't fault it and I definitely can't fault the price-tag or the amount of product you get - it must be one of the cheapest setting powders on the market, when you consider the huge 85g you're receiving for your money.

It's a standard white setting powder that's finely milled and invisible on the skin. I use mine for setting my whole face. I'm sure you could bake with it if you wanted to but I'm not someone who bothers with that step so I can't confirm whether it works for that purpose.

I use a brush to apply the smallest amount to both my under-eyes and the rest of my face. I have dry skin so I only use a tiny bit - just enough to pull back the shine from my tinted moisturiser and take away some tackiness so that my powder products blend better.

What I love about this is that it does the job without fuss or fanfare, and it's so finely milled that it never looks dry or cake-y on my skin. It also doesn't leave a white cast and it has a slight smoothing effect so my pores and texture don't look as noticeable (perhaps in part because it's pulling back any shine, which naturally makes things like open pores look less obvious).

There's a reason why makeup artists love this product: it works and it's not badly priced, plus you get a huge amount of product so you won't be repurchasing it any time soon. Since I'm only using this on myself and I don't need much for my dry skin, I can see this lasting me for years.

I can't fault this so I've given it an HG tag. One day I might try Laura Mercier's famous Translucent Setting Powder, but that's expensive and I don't need my setting powder to do anything else but set my makeup because I use Hourglass' Dim Light over the top for the finish, so I can see myself repurchasing this for years.


You may remember that I recently reviewed Simple's Radiance Brightening Facial Wash (reviewed here), which I loved so much that it made my September favourites post (see here).

Both that cleanser and this one were given to me by my sister-in-law and I opened them at around the same time (January this year), it's just that I've almost finished the other one but this one is still going strong - for the simple (ha) reason that I love the other one and this one's meh.

Unfortunately and typically (because that's just how life goes), this exfoliating wash is available absolutely everywhere but I can't find the brightening wash anywhere so I don't know how I'll go when it comes to repurchasing it. How annoying!

But yes, that's just how life goes...

Simple claims/product details:
  • A perfect blend of active ingredients and witch hazel goodness to deep clean and refresh your skin
  • For healthy clear skin, natural antibacterial and shine control
  • Witch hazel reduces blemishes and natural zinc PCA gently absorbs oils
  • Pro Vitamin B5 actively restores, softens and smooths
  • No perfume, no colours and no unnecessary or harsh chemicals so it won't upset your skin
  • Dermatologically tested and approved
  • Contains no animal-derived ingredients
  • Perfect for even sensitive skin
  • To use: in your hands work a small amount into a lather; massage onto wet skin, then rinse with water; rinse with water if wash gets into your eyes
  • RRP $9.99 AUD for 150ml, but do shop around


This product is ok but I'm not enjoying using it and it's not one I would buy.

It's a gel product that's a little on the gluggy side and it has no scent. It does contain little grains, but these are very soft and there aren't many of them so I don't think they do anything and I'm not sure why they've been included.

I generally use this as my in-shower cleanser and it works ok for that purpose but it's nothing to write home about. The directions suggest that this product lathers, but it doesn't for me - not as I understand the word anyway. I also don't think that it does much so my face doesn't feel particularly clean or soft after use, nor does it look fresher or brighter: it just feels and looks the same.

I've also tried this as a morning cleanser and as my first cleanser in the evening to remove my makeup. Again, it works ok for those purposes but I do find that it's a bugger to remove with plain water (it just doesn't want to rinse off - it's like it sticks to the skin) so I need a cloth to remove it or I won't get anywhere.

This is meant to be an oil-balancing wash so I was a little worried that it would strip my dry skin or dry it out, but it hasn't done that and a lot of the reviews I've read say this product does nothing to control or balance oil. I can't speak to that because I don't have oily skin, but I can certainly imagine that it wouldn't do anything because it hasn't dried my skin out.

Also, I don't think this should be called an 'exfoliating wash' because the soft, sparse grains mentioned above are pretty useless and I don't feel that they serve any purpose. I'm not the first person to have said this so that's something to be aware of.

In other news my pH strips rate this product at somewhere between a five and a six, so at least it's not astringent and I agree that it should suit sensitive skin because it's so gentle.

Overall I don't like this product and I can't recommend it, but it's not terrible so I'll likely leave it in the shower for occasional use and I can see myself throwing it into Project Pan next year, just to get through it.

Not for me.
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