My weekend in pictures

Weekend was finally the time to relax and have a holiday. I can safely say I did pretty much nothing that was actually productive. I ate all kinds of not-so-healthy things (but also a lot of fruit and berries) and wasted some money on “essentials” from The Body Shop. Also bought a very nice white & navy cardigan from a sale and I’m quite in love with it!

Now, it’s back to work with me for the week and then 4 days off again! On the bright side, the holiday gave me a good chance to sort out my closet and get a lot of stuff done towards our upcoming move. Only a month left in our current home! I’m trying not to stress myself out over the whole thing, but well, statistics show that moving is one of the most stressful times in peoples’ lives. We did hire a moving company this time around to take a load off, but the fact is that we still have to do a lot of packing and sorting out… Ugh! All the expenses are driving me a bit cuckoo as well.

The Monday is certainly starting off softer with the help of my new Shea Body Mist…. mmm….

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Eco-certified Lavera toothpaste

As I’m on a quest to find natural, organic and animal-friendly alternatives to the products I’m using, I’m finding more and more items that I would’ve never guessed to have been tested on animals – and more and more companies that do test. A couple of months ago I realized that toothpaste was one of those things after finding brands such as Pepsodent on the list of companies that do test on animals. I could almost feel gray hair growing in… Toothpaste is such an essential thing in probably everyone’s life that it would be really important to find one that would do its job, but what if it also has to be animal-friendly?

Well, as I was looking for something else entirely at my local supermarket a couple of months back, I stumbled upon Lavera’s eco-certified toothpaste in a nice 75 ml tube. It also appeared to be vegan and organic (in actuality, containing a few ingredients that are the products of organic farming).

lavera-toothpaste

Lavera Basis Sensitiv Toothpaste Mint

Packaging: Classic Lavera. Clean, not too busy. 75 ml plastic tube. Certifications on the package.

Consistency: Like any regular white toothpaste, really.

Scent: Very pleasantly mint. Fresh, organic mint, to be specific.

Taste: Sea salt. This was quite the surprise on the first time and threw me off a bit. There’s mint, too, but it’s quite mild.

Promise: Protection against cavities, naturally white teeth, minty fresh breath.

Delivery: Gives you clean teeth and a very mildly minty breath. Teeth feel fine and clean, but the breath you get isn’t as fresh and minty as you get with “commercial toothpastes”. Doesn’t seem to be whitening my tea-stained teeth.

Would I buy again: I might. I kind of wonder if there might be something even better (and mintier) on the market by another brand, but considering this wasn’t all that expensive (perhaps 3,50 euros) and it did its job, I wouldn’t shoot it down that quickly. Wouldn’t recommend this for those who are very fond of regular toothpastes.

Summary: Good, basic toothpaste that gets your teeth clean. Doesn’t do anything special, but does its job. If you want a really fresh breath, buy some gum or mints…

lavera-toothpastee

The Body Shop Vitamin E Aqua Boost Sorbet

I was looking for a new moisturizer a little while ago and thought I’d buy my old summer favorite, The Body Shop’s Seaweed Mattifying Day Cream, but then I saw this.

The Body Shop Vitamine E Aqua Boost Sorbet

A sorbet? For your face? Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? Well, of course I had to sample it on my hand. The cooling effect was quite surprising! The consistency of the product is very much like that of a sorbet indeed – but the scent is quite strong. In fact, the scent was so strong that it made me hesitate on buying the product as I often get a reaction from strong scents. (As a side note, I accidentally took my pictures of the side that said Vitamine, not Vitamin, but hey, who cares, right?)

The Body Shop Vitamin E Aqua Boost Sorbet

The Body Shop Vitamin E Aqua Boost Sorbet

Packaging: 50 ml glass jar with plastic lid (the product is light pink in color)

Scent: Like The Body Shop’s Vitamine E range moisturizer mixed with cold gel of some kind. The scent reminded me a bit of the stuff I apply on horses’ legs after a riding lesson sometimes when they need cooling! (Except that this one is far milder than that yet.)

Texture: Like sorbet ice cream mixed with gel. Very light.

Feels like: Lightly cooling, absorbs nearly instantly, makes the skin quite matte and very smooth, velvet-like. Despite the strong scent, it didn’t end up irritating my rather sensitive skin. Works nicely under makeup! Surprisingly hydrating considering how light it is.

Would I buy again: I believe I would. The price here was 19,90 euros, which is standard for most of The Body Shop’s moisturizers. This has been working for me both day and night and I’m quite happy with it. The scent is not my favorite, but it vanishes quickly enough so that I won’t smell it throughout the day. A very nice product for my combination skin!

Have you tried this?

Time off work

So, I’ve been having some time off work since Thursday last week and boy have I needed it! Not that I’ve got to relax all that much though! Friday and Saturday were spent cleaning up our home really good because of an apartment viewing on Sunday. The viewing wasn’t much of a success, just two young ladies taking about 3 minutes to glance about and that was it. We felt a bit disappointed too, because we had put in 2 days of cleaning for the showing and even organized our horribly messy walk-in for the day. Of course, the lack of interest in the apartment also meant we would be getting another viewing soon enough…

Sunday night we had a brief moment to catch our breath after the viewing and then on Monday morning we headed over to my mom’s 185 km away. After a lunch and some coffee we were due to the bank for a brief meeting, after which I got dragged into a hardware store where Mike spent nearly 2 hours picking up this and that in order to clean up & polish his sword. His… actual… sword. Yeah.

After another brief moment of relaxing (and somewhat fitful sleeping on an uncomfortable sofa bed) it was soon time to take the dog to the vet. Everything checked out good and his heart condition still doesn’t require medication – yay! After the vet, we headed off to Wanha Markki, home for the elderly animals – a place we had wanted to visit for years, but never managed to do. Oh, that was a wonderful and relaxing experience, which finally made me feel like I was on a holiday!

I took tons of pictures of all the wonderful animals:

I am and I always will be such a country girl at heart. It’s amongst the fields and the animals where my heart feels at home, regaining strength and energy. Visiting the home for the elderly animals was by far the best experience I’ve had all year. I’m still happy, just thinking about it all! It was extra great to get to pet everything.

After the fun with the animals we headed back to mom’s for some dinner and then I had to hop behind the wheel again and drive us back home – 185 km. Total driving done in two days: Approximately 450 km. Pretty good.

Today I had to once again tidy up around here as we had yet another apartment viewing happen. This time many interested people came and I’m hoping that one of them will choose to move here so that we can relax and literally put our feet up again – hah!

For the rest of the night, I plan on relaxing and feeling good about doing absolutely nothing. Tomorrow, I’ll try to get back to my blogging again!

All I can say is… it’s good to have some time off – even if it’s busy.

Rimmel Apocalips – UPDATE

Apocalips-402-AcrossTheUniverse

Well, you can color me impressed – and deep red. Turns out, the right color makes a huge difference sometimes. You probably read (I assume) my review/rant on Rimmel Apocalips Lip Lacquer earlier and perhaps you even read between the lines and gathered that I wasn’t super impressed with the product. I decided that I would give it another, proper chance and so, while my spouse was shopping for some groceries, I was shopping for a new color. Of course I asked for his opinion on which of the remaining colors I should choose and after some thought, he chose this one, 402 Across the Universe. A beautiful, deep, almost blood red hue – which was one of my favorites as well.

As soon as we got home, I had to try it on. Whoah! In the yellowish lighting of our bathroom it looked completely blood red. Intense, I thought. In the daylight, however, the color is a beautiful pure red with a bit more of that shine I was expecting. For some reason this shade also feels less drying on the lips than Luna did. I’ve determined that I don’t particularly like the scent of this, but I do like the look of this gorgeous red shade a lot and I feel that it suits me. It’s a very bold color however, bound to gather some looks.

As for the wear of it… Well, as said, I couldn’t wait to put it on. I put it on and then took a few pictures, geeked about a bit and well, I got tired. I lied down and I dabbed my lips, twice, onto a tissue to make sure I wouldn’t get any on the pillow. Since the tissue had quite a bit of color on it, I assumed I got it off. Imagine my surprise when I woke up from my nap two hours later with a perfect, matte red pout. Yeah. Then, I went to walk the dog and had a cup of coffee and… it’s still there. So this baby sticks. This color seems to like me as much as I like it.

Very cool.

Rimmel Apocalips Lip Lacquer

My latest LivBox (a box I receive monthly that contains different kinds of (mostly) cosmetic samples) came with the much reviewed and raved about Rimmel Apocalips Lip Lacquer, so I figured I’d do my part and toss in my two cents on what I think of the product.

Rimmel Apocalips Lip Lacquer

The packaging is simple, yet kind of stylish, though plastic-y. You can get the idea of what shade the product is by simply looking at the tube. Inside, there is a sponge-tip applicator wand which allows you to apply the product with varied intensity. At first, I thought the end result wasn’t going to be very neat at all and I huffed and puffed a bit, but once I gave my lips a bit of a scrubbing and a good balming (and dabbed off the balm a bit), I got a pretty nice and even application that dried quite quickly.

Somehow, I had thought that this was more of a shine-y, sticky lip gloss like product (even though I had read reviews, hah!) as I remember the lip lacquers from a few years ago when a lot of them were just that. I was actually quite pleased that it dried into only a hint of shine, much like an average lipstick – but with a good dose of pigment and a texture that suggests it’s on those lips to stay!

There’s a familiar, yet somehow very fake scent to this product which I don’t particularly love, but it doesn’t really bother me, since it doesn’t simply stay and linger on the lips.

The shade I received, Luna, is not a color I would typically go for. It’s a very warm peachy, orange-y kind of a shade that isn’t the best match for me, but in natural lighting it can look quite pretty. I’m sure that for generally warm-colored women this would be a great match indeed.

I would love to try this in one of the pink shades of the range, because I think those would suit me better.

However, Rimmel is not a brand I would normally buy, because even though they are against animal testing and do not test their ingredients or products on animals they are a company that will allow their products to be tested on animals for the markets that require those tests by law. I quite like the lacquer, but at the same time, I wouldn’t wish to put money into the pocket of a brand who allows testing for certain markets. Then again, I favor The Body Shop products, which have a Leaping Bunny symbol – but who are owned by L’Oreal… Ugh. Why must it be so complicated?!

Anyway, to sum it up:

  • Several different colors ranging from nude to vivid reds
  • Not as long-wearing as I would’ve thought (and can’t handle blowing my nose, hah)
  • Quite the fake scent, might not be to everyone’s liking
  • A bit difficult to apply neatly
  • Doesn’t feel too drying on the lips
  • Provides a hint of shine

Have you tried the Apocalips?

The Body Shop Baked Eye Colour

A couple of days ago I purchased my very first The Body Shop eye shadow in many years. I’m not sure why I haven’t been buying The Body Shop makeup products in ages and even back when I did, why didn’t I buy more than a couple? Beats me, because at least this eye shadow became an almost instant favorite!

eyeshadow1

The Baked Eye Colours were on sale and after sampling a few, I opted for the most easy-to-use, neutral shades to begin with – something I could easily keep in my purse as well. The shade is called Moonstone and the lighter shade is a shimmery cream color that is quite neutral, perhaps a bit more cool than warm. The dark shade is kind of a silvery-khaki shade, quite lovely in my opinion.

Normally, these are priced at 15,30 euros here, but now these were on sale for 8 euros and after I’ve seen this in action, I wish I had purchased a couple of more of these (well I wish I had purchased all of them, but you know, with the moving and all, money is quite tight at the moment).

I wore this eye shadow to work yesterday (and will likely do so again!), combining the two colors, as you can see on my Instagram! I applied my makeup around 7 am and I first checked it around 11 am and there was no change what so ever. I saw a bit of creasing around 3 pm, but it was barely noticeable – and I had no primer on, just my mineral base. Around 7 pm there was a bit more creasing, but a bit of dabbing about made the shadow look decent again – if a bit faded. Only the lighter shade was creasing by the way, interestingly enough.

eyeshadow2

When I went to take a shower at 8 pm, the eye shadow was still good enough for me to hit the town with, so I’d say the durability is pretty great! The Body Shop promises these 8 hours of wear and they can be used wet or dry. I do have a horrible suspicion though that they may be cancelling this line, since it seems to also be on a really good sale in USA (like half the price of ours!!!). I really hope that’s not the case, because I would love to collect more!

To sum it up:

  • The Baked Eye Colours come in 8 shades, 2 shades in each container (so technically 16 shades)
  • Can be used wet or dry
  • Blends well
  • Good amount of pigment – and can be built up
  • Doesn’t flake when being applied
  • Gives at least 6-7 hours or wear (with primer, likely up to 10)
  • Shimmery, light-reflecting consistency

I can’t really think of negatives in this case, all I can hope is that they continue with the product!

I went to buy a new moisturizer…

…and somehow, I ended up walking out with these:

thebodyshophaul

The Body Shop has been my ultimate weakness since I was about 13 and first went to one when I got to a big enough city to have one! The Body Shop basically started me off on my personal grooming / makeup applying and almost, I would say, path to “womanhood”. I remember my big sister being really confused when I was buying myself an eye cream (the classic Elderflower Eye Gel they still sell today) when she had never really used one…

The Body Shop is a store I always associate with good memories, familiar scents and feeling good, so I can’t help myself when I step into the shop… I have to sample, sniff and shop. Yesterday, I went in for a moisturizer on my “quick trip to the post office” which turned into 45 minutes of The Body Shop bliss… and a much less happy bank account balance… Of course, they had to also have a sale.

The moisturizer I chose was an interesting newcomer from the Vitamin E -range – the sorbet. Vitamin E Aqua Boost Sorbet to be exact (and I guarantee there will be a review) which I tried out of curiosity. After my hand nearly froze, I was all giddy about it, though worrying it might not work with my sensitive skin. It does have a very strong scent as well. It seemed quickly absorbing and yes, cooling, as if applying sorbet on your skin.

Then my eyes hit the SALE section… and I picked up a heavenly-scented Passion Fruit Shower Gel (seriously too delicious) for 5 euros (normally 8,50 euros here) and a giant (300ml) tub of Shea Body Butter for 15 euros (the normal sized ones normally cost 18,50 euros!). Shea Body Butter is something that also takes me back a decade or nearly two – something I used in my teens as well. The scent is just soooo good without being overpoweringly sweet.

Last, but not least, I noticed Baked Eye Colours on sale… I could’ve bought them all, but I settled for just one in shade Moonstone, which looks to be a pretty, shimmery cream paired with kind of a khaki-ish hue. I have a feeling this will be a great everyday item that I can use in very versatile ways! Seems like there’s quite a lot of pigment as well. The eye shadow was 8 euros (normally 15,30 euros). I will definitely review this one soon as well!

PS. As soon as I got home, I had to hit the shower and then basically dive into that tub of Shea Body Butter…

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

I’ve been awarded! Yay! Literally, this was what first played through my mind:

After I settled down a bit, I began to worry where do I get those 15 bloggers to nominate! But more on that later…

Anyway, I was nominated (quite a while ago now) by the wonderful author of ninarossbeauty. I suggest checking out her blog because it’s, like she puts it, “beauty with an edge” – the best kind of beauty.

very-inspiring-blogger-award

The Rules of the award
1) Thank and link the amazing person who nominated you.
2) List the rules and display the award.
3) Share seven facts about yourself.
4) Nominate 15 other amazing blogs and comment on their posts to let them know that they have been nominated.
5) *Optional* Proudly display the award logo on your blog and follow the blogger who nominated you.

What 7 facts about myself might you not yet know..? (You can check out my 20 facts of myself here.)

1) I have a secret love for disco-dancing and I’m surprisingly good at it, even if I say so myself. (I also like to dance to old Michael Jackson songs (Billie Jean is my favorite) and pretend I’m cool.)
2) I have a love-hate relationship with summer. I love the fact that I don’t have to deal with rain, snow, mud, sleet etc on a daily basis, but I hate that with sun, comes the heat. I love all of the delicious berries that are so readily available (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries). I hate that I tend to get an allergic reaction from the sun quite easily. I enjoy the green nature, but I could do with less bugs.
3) In case you wonder why my nails always seem to be so short, it’s because once my nails get to a certain point, they start to curl like mad. The nails on my thumbs, index fingers and middle fingers especially – the other two are always kind of like that.
4) I was born with long, black hair. It was long enough to tie a ribbon into it. By the time I was one, it was replaced by golden blonde hair which I had well into my teens. Then I started dyeing my hair. These days my natural color is darker, cooler, but still has copper-wire colored strands in it.
5) My first relationship lasted for 5 years and it started when I was 14. We are still good friends and value each other greatly. We went through a lot together and grew up together, until eventually we just grew apart – it was heart-breaking.
6) I’ve never been drunk in my life nor have I ever smoked a cigarette. I don’t normally consume alcohol at all.
7) I’m a woman of extremes. I have to either have it all or nothing at all. That applies to pretty much everything.

Because I very recently nominated people for the Liebster Award, I thought… why don’t I just nominate all of you (muahhahah) who read my blog and blog yourself! If you take the bait, please let me know so I can come check out your facts! Perhaps I’ll find some new blogs in the process.

Workday makeup rut

I’ve been pretty silent here on blog lately as you may have noticed. At work, it’s the busiest time of the year right now and I admit that I’ve neglected a few things out of sheer tiredness. One of those things is makeup. I do my makeup, sure, but I’m noticing that I’ve been kind of stuck in a rut and doing something I can’t recall ever doing before – doing the same face every day. Usually I experiment freely with new eye shadows and lipsticks and what have you, regardless of the day of the week and on most days I do a different eye makeup just according to my mood. Lately though, I’ve been having such a hard time getting up in the morning that I keep reaching for the same few items on a daily basis. When I come to think of it, it’s actually kind of a good thing to be stuck in a rut.

For one, the time it takes for me to get ready has been pretty much cut in half in terms of makeup because I know what I need and I know what I’m putting on as soon as I have finished applying my moisturizer and I can just get going. I’ve also kind of found my easy, everyday look that can be easily modified by adding or subtracting a bold lip.

everydayproducts

Here’s what I’ve been using:

  • BB cream (The Body Shop Flawless BB Cream in 01)
  • Powder (Lumene CC 6-in-1 in Fair / Medium)
  • Bronzer (Maybelline Dream Sun Bronzer)
  • Blush (Makeup Academy Blusher in Cupcake)
  • Black eyeliner (Lumene Sensitive Touch Automatic Eyeliner)
  • Black mascara (Isadora All Day Long Lash)
  • Lipstick / lip gloss (Makeup Academy Lipstick 04)

And yes, I have learned to use a very light bronzer (which smells kind of like old lady makeup) and realized that it actually works for me – when it’s light enough. I have also been skipping the primer, because I find that under a BB cream it just kind of tends to slip away anyway. As much as I love a mineral base, the fact is that BB cream is just a whole lot quicker to apply since you can do it by simply using your fingers. I also really do like this BB cream – it works well now that my skin needs very little covering up. I have generally skipped doing my eyebrows to save some time and I skipped them for the purposes of these pictures as well. I like to use the black eyeliner for tight lining my upper lash line / eyelid as well, it really makes the eyes stand out, which is important to me because of my very strong prescription.

Usually my look is pretty much like this:

Strong black liner and mascara for the eyes and pretty neutral lips. Somehow the eyeliner just makes me look nicely polished – and this Lumene one just stays put really well and it’s a great, intense black, almost could pass for a liquid liner. Really easy for me to apply too as it almost applies itself. I don’t know how I survived without this eyeliner, but it has certainly become my favorite one.

Do you have an everyday makeup look that you keep going for on a daily basis or do you like to switch it around?