Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Bad day

Today I probably had one of the most terrible days in a couple of months. While having a dinner at a Greek restaurant, my wallet was stolen from my purse. It contained only 40 bucks, but I had my ID and cards in there, and the thieves have already taken nearly $1000 CAD from my account. Hope that my crappy Polish bank acknowledges the loss and refunds me. So tomorrow morning I am heading to the police to get a copy of my report and fax it to the bank in Poland.

Oh, and just to make it worse, I burned my shoulders and chest. They're hot pink right now.

Yeah, woe is me.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Midnight update

Hello my lovelies, I just wanted to update you very quickly on how I am doing :) 

So my parents arrived two days ago and since we have seen and walked a lot, so I didn't have too much time on my hands for any blogging. Today we went to the Grouse Mountain and attempted climbing Grouse Grind trail, which is only 2.9 km long but climbs up for 800m, which means it is extremely steep. My mum was really short of breath, but we managed to go all the way up! Here I am on the path.

Yes, the boots are the latest fashion, I suggest you go pick a pair yourselves!

Afterwards, we rewarded ourselves with a great dinner at a Mexican place and had a drop of Canadian whiskey to celebrate my mother's name day. As a result of the eventful day, I am dog tired right now and I am going to bed in a moment!

On a different note, my parents brought some awesome gifts for me and fiance, which I definitely want to share with you, and they also brought in their luggage some of the make-up stuff I ordered online and sent to my brother to NYC to save on shipping and customs. I played with some of it this morning and there're some really great bits and pieces! Watch out for my haul, I'll try to post it as soon as possible.

That's all for now, I guess :) I also wanted to thank all of my new followers for joining my blog and my older followers for their lovely comments and support, with special thanks going to Sarah from If the shoe fits... and Stephanie from Steph Stuph; you rock, girlies!

Thanks for stopping by and have a great one! xxx

Friday, May 22, 2009

My make-up breakthroughs

I'm into a bit of nostalgic mood today (maybe it's because yesterday I watched my brother's graduation day at Columbia Law School through live streaming; the internet really is amazing...) and I started thinking about my earliest experiences with make-up and what were my favorite looks and products... So I thought it might be interesting/ funny to share it with you, guys :)

I think my make-up experiments actually started in the secondary school. I was in a theatre troupe and often played main parts in our performances, so I really wanted my costumes and make-up to match the character. I remember playing a young girl who went mad because of her unrequited love for a handsome knight; I had a long, white gown and I thought my make-up should look otherworldly. This is why I purchased some absolutely crazy products back then, like a metallic, silver/beige lipgloss which I never used, I think not even for the play :)

At that time I also got some other extreme (at least for a 13 year old) products, like a super dark, brownish cherry lipstick from Lumene. Seriously, I don't know what I was thinking. I'd have problems to pull it off even now, and then... I remember it was very pigmented and I think it was actually a good lipstick, after all, I just went crazy with the shade :)
Then my preferences did a complete 180 thanks to some article posted in a teenage magazine. It was a praise to natural looking girls and natural make-up: using only clear mascara (hell, what's the point of using a clear mascara on your lashes, I don't know the secret till today, it does absolutely nothing), clear gloss and some transparent powder. Not that this is a harmful approach, just totally not me...

In high school I started experimenting more and more again. My main issue was acne and I did everything to cover it, but at times it would get worse and I would feel absolutely down and ugly and refuse to leave the house. I guess everyone who has had similar skin problems knows what I am talking about. So I tried countless concealers and color correctors, none of them really working to my advantage, I guess. I also remember ordering some make-up from Avon, because my class mate was a representative, and this is how I came into possession of a ridiculous, glitter-ball lipgloss, just because it smelled of artificial peaches. This is also when I discovered some good stuff, though, like make-up application techniques, brushes, loose face powder from Bourjois (love the smell!). My biggest breakthrough was using highlighting shades on the inner corner of my eye and up to the brow bone as well as blending colors together. One of my favorite color combos was true gold eyeshadow on the first half of the lid and shimmery pink on the other half. You see, I was way into shimmer :)

During uni, I started using more eyeshadow colors thanks to my cousin, who got me my first eyeshadow palette. It IS crap; the quality of the eyeshadows is just terrible now that I can compare it to some decent eyeshadows, but I still owe her :) I also ventured into the world of blusher, which I skipped earlier since I thought my skin was too pinky on itself, and I perfected my winged eyeliner. When I got my first, long-term job as an English teacher in a private language school, I started putting more and more effort into my make-up looks and settled on using liquid foundation to even my skin out, which I had never done before except for the nights out.

And then, finally, around December last year, I discovered the online make-up community. My very first and favorite make-up guru was Amy from Ask Me Make-up; unfortunately, she doesn't do videos any more... Then I started watching other people on YT and then I discovered beauty blogs and then I decided to start my own :) I have learnt A LOT since then, for which I am really grateful :) You people are fantastic!!!

What is your make-up story? I'd love to know what were your make-up breakthroughs! Please drop me a line in the comments. Also, I wanted to let you know that for the next two weeks I won't be able to post so often, however expect some haulage very soon! Take care, my beauties. xxx

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Animal Instinct Contest Entry: Exotic Bird

This is my final contest entry for this month; parents arrive tomorrow and I will be really busy from then on, so here's the last one... I'm very sorry, Sarah, that I won't manage to participate in your Disney contest like I promised, but I genuinely lacked inspiration and now, well, time. Good luck with your entries though!

I got really excited when I learnt about wonderful Rebecca's (Panda Does Makeup) Animal Instinct Contest! I'd instantly started browsing Google for inspirational images, and my first idea was for a cat-like look. Not very original, I know, but I sort of wanted something to translate well into make-up; as much as I love squirrels, that wouldn't be easy to pull off. But then! I changed my mind...

and went for something fun, exotic and colorful, which is embodied by this lovely bird (don't know the species, by the way). I just love the vibrant colors of its plumage! I recently did some more wearable looks, so I wanted this one to be as crazy as possible (but no full on face paints, Rebecca!:). Here's how it turned out:

The last one's a bit scarry; it was taken in the sunlight, sorry for the uneven skin... But at least you can see these are not photoshopped ;)

List of products used:

MAC Studio Finish concealer in NW20
CS Honey Fair 1.2 mineral foundation
CS Sheer Radiance blusher as contour/bronzer
CS Dare blusher on the apples of the cheeks
CS Light Veil
Dyed feathers from a craftstore glued on with Ardell's lash glue (hate the smell of this!)

Revlon cream eyeshadow quad in Seashells: white shade as a base
CS 78 eyeshadow and blush palette: (from inner to outer corner) matte white, yellow, light blue, intensive turquoise, blue-based purples and more of a reddish purple, plus brownish shade to blend into the crease and matte white as a highlight
GOSH Extreme Art eyeliners in 15 (purple) and 13 (gold) to draw feather shaped lines in the outer corners
GOSH pen eyeliner in black
Covergirl Lash Blast mascara
Ardell 110 false eyelashes

Inglot Fruits in Ice Blackberry Duo (berry shade)

Hope you like it, Rebecca, and thanks for running the contest! Check out her blog (link at the beginning of the post), she's such a sweet girl and does some amazing reviews! Have a lovely evening, everyone :)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Body art at the Chelsea Flower Show 2009

I bet all of you Brits are sick and tired of the Flower Show, but to me that's quite refreshing, actually. Anyhow, I was browsing through the photos of the show gardens when I came across The Quilted Velvet Garden designed by Tony Smith. Telegraph says that "The garden is based on a dream, taking the form of a long, arduous journey through the everyday world of work and domestic chores, eventually arriving at a place of comfort and luxury.". I don't know about arduous journey, but when I saw these pics, I totally sank in.

This amazing body art was created by Emma Cammack on the model Gemma Rhodes. How awesome is that?! 

There were also some celebrities present at the VIP Preview Day, including Helen Mirren, Sienna Miller, Ringo Starr and Claudia Leigh, wearing a hat designed by Cozmo Jenks.

For those interested in the show, visit Daily Telegraph pages here

Silver FOTD

Just a quick post to show you what I came up with in the subject of silver eye look which I talked about in my post about self-tanners and bronzer. I feel like you must be utterly bored with seeing my face again, but there's not much else I can post about make-up right now, so bear with me.

I just used some silver shades from my 78 palette and then a bit of darker grey on a fluffy brush to softly define the crease. Then I blended it out with matte white eyeshadow up to the brow bone. I also smudged some black kohl eyeliner on the upper and lower lashline, and finished the look with black mascara on top and bottom lashes.

On my cheeks I am wearing Coastal Scents Essence mineral blush, which is a beautiful rosey/ mauve shade with matte finish. On the lips I have GOSH 0054 lipgloss, a Barbie pink with fine silver shimmer.

I'm feeling a bit low today and I sort of lack some inspiration for my blog. I don't know what would you guys be interested in seeing/ reading about here. If anyone has any suggestions/ requests, please let me know.

Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Celebrity look contest entry

I know I'm bordering on a mass production with my contest entries lately, but it's all because my parents are coming to Vancouver this Saturday for two weeks, so I won't have a chance to do much blogging then, and certainly no contests for me!

So, here's my entry for Angela's celebrity contest at Everything Superficial. I tried to recreate a smokey eye look worn by Scarlett Johansson for one of her photoshoots. She's one of my favorite actresses and from what I remember, she's also a fellow make-up addict :)

This is the inspirational photo:

And my attempt at recreating the look:

List of products used:
CS Honey Fair 1.2 mineral foundation
MAC Studio Finish concealer in NW20
CS Sheer Radiance blush to contour/bronze
CS Dare blusher on the apples of the cheeks
Wet n' Wild Mega Glo Face Illuminator in Blushing
CS Light Veil

CS Eye Poxy primer
Margaret Astor black kohl eyepencil as a base
CS 78 eyeshadow and blush palette: matte black and grey, matte deep brown, matte cream eyeshadows
Avon Smokey Eye quad: the darkest, shimmery grey color
Inglot highlighting eyeshadow
Covergirl Lash Blast mascara

GOSH Darling lipstick
generic clear, shimmery gloss

Well, I look nothing like Scarlett, but it was fun recreating this look! Thanks to Angela for hosting the contest, I hope you get a ton of entries (that's a bit unwise for me... whatever).

Thanks for stopping by, my lovely bloggers! xxx

Mineral vs liquid foundation

Yesterday when I blogged about my recent passion for bronzing, I decided to go back to my old liquid foundation from Inglot since it is a bit darker and more yellow toned than my everyday mineral foundation from Coastal Scents. And I can honestly say that... I absolutely hate the liquid foundation.

Last year, I used to use liquid foundation on an everyday basis. Yes, I never got a right shade because my skin is so pale. Yes, the application took quite a lot of time, but I got used to it and I liked the finish it gave to my skin. Yes, I started looking shiny after a couple of hours and by the end of the day it was practically gone, but I just blamed my super oily skin and kept going with it.

Then last Christmas, when shopping for a nice present for my mum, who has sensitive, allergic skin prone to redness, I came across a starter kit by Bare Minerals. I decided to buy it for my mum and then awaited her opinion about it. She wasn't too thrilled, to be honest (but she never is about make-up), though I already got hooked on the theme and researched possible options for myself.

I finally decided to order something comparable to a starter kit from Coastal Scents, because I'd been also lemming their palettes and brushes. The kit came with Honey Matt foundation in Honey Fair 1.2 and Honey Light, both very good shades for me as it turned out. When I ripped the package open, run to the mirror, happily applied it and turned to my fiance for his opinion, he calmly stated that I just looked less pink than usual. However, to me, it was much more than that. My face looked quite glowy but not shiny, the shade perfectly matched the warm undertones in my skin, and all the imperfections I wanted to hide were gone thanks to very decent coverage. But most importantly, I felt that my skin was really clean, like there was actually nothing sitting on top of it. It took a while to learn how to apply it, but then the process was much shorter than putting on liquid foundation. After a couple of days using the mineral foundation, I haven't noticed any breakouts or other allergic reactions or excessive dryness that some people seem to have.

This said, I am not a fan of everything mineral. While the pigmentation of a mineral blusher or bronzer is very good, I think it takes more time to apply them, they're more messy and more difficult to control. The same goes for mineral eyeshadows or loose pigments, I simply prefer pressed eyeshadows for easier and faster application.

It's funny how you get used to good things so quickly. In fact, I totally forgot how it felt to use liquid foundation and I only realized how much pain it was when I used it again yesterday. The worst of it was this feeling of having a layer of gunk on your face, yuck. I don't think I'll be coming back to using liquid any time soon. 

What is your experience with using mineral foundation?

Monday, May 18, 2009

Bronzing big time!

This weekend, the weather in Vancouver was just amazing, I didn't actually think it's possible here: sunny, really warm and altogether summery! It definitely put me in the holiday mood, which practically equals wanting a nice, golden tan :) So I digged out any self-tanning/bronzing products I had stocked up in the bathroom cabinet and so the project 'Holiday Skin' began.

Right now, I am using Dove Summer Glow Beauty Body Lotion to tan my body. It's a 'moisturizer with subtle self-tanners and light reflecting pigments. Gradually builds a beautiful light summer tan'. The light reflecting pigments are nothing more than golden shimmer, and I am not so crazy about that part, because I'd prefer to highlight only certain parts of my body with the shimmer, like arms or legs, and not necessarily my feet, for instance. I have the fair to normal skin version and I have to say I quite like the color it gives me. I feel it looks pretty similar to my natural tan, which is never chocolate brown, but something closer to golden or peachy shades. The smell is also ok: when you squeeze it onto your skin, it smells very fruity (sort of apricot?), and then of course you get a little bit of that fake tan smell, but it fades quite fast and doesn't bother me too much. I know that Lollipop26 also likes this lotion :)

For my face, I am using Johnson's Holiday Skin Daily Facial Moisturiser. I bought it a long time ago together with their Holiday Skin lotion for the body, but I wasn't a huge fan of this latter product. The facial version claims to keep your face moisturized all day and gradually build a beautiful, light tan (why do the marketing people keep using the same expression for this type of product?!).  I like the packaging, it's a simple, golden yellow tube which makes squeezing the cream out very easy. I also quite like the color it leaves on my skin. And that's it for the pros, unfortunately. I am not too fond of the smell, it actually does smell like fake tan right away, the consistency is quite runny and feels a bit greasy on my skin (I've got normal to combination skin version), it doesn't have any SPF protection in it, and I don't think it is a good moisturizer. I try to remede the last two cons by applying this early in the morning, well before going out, and then washing it off and applying my regular day cream before putting on make-up and hitting the road.

To make my face and decollete seem even more tanned and glowing, I use my Coastal Scents Sheer Radiance blusher. To me, it's definitely a bronzing product; in the pot it looks very orange and shimmery, but again, once I blend it into my skin, it looks pretty much like my natural tan. I apply it where the sun would naturally hit me, i.e. on my cheeks, chin, forehead and nose, as opposed to where you'd place a bronzer to contour your face. 

Once I develop a darker tan thanks to these products, I'm planning to attempt a silver eye look as seen on Armani and Blumarine S/S 2009 shows. Watch this space for that!

Thanks for stopping by :) xxx

Friday, May 15, 2009

My beauty tips and hints

Sarah at If the shoe fits... inspired me with her Elle's tips & tricks post to write this... Most of these are nothing revolutionary, but I hope there will be at least one you didn't know before! Ok, let's get right to it :)

1. Never forget to moisturize your skin; this includes lips too! Even if your skin is very oily, like mine, stripping it time and again of its natural lipid layer will cause it to produce even more sebum, which in turn can lead to breakouts. As for the lips, chapped pout can ruin even the best make-up look.

2. Exfoliate your lips using a damp washcloth. No need to spend money on expensive lip exfoliating creams, a damp washcloth will do the job even faster and better! Make sure it's made of quite a rough material, muslin won't work ;) I've also tried exfoliating with a toothbrush, but this didn't work out for me.

3. Use aspirin mask to exfoliate your face. The cheapest solution ever, and it really works! I'd recommend it especially for combination to oily skin, as it is a bit drying. Some people claim it can help with acne too; I haven't really observed that effect, but it certainly makes your skin feel baby smooth :)

4. Introduce something unexpected to your make-up routine. Use your lipstick as a blusher, try the favorite bronzer as a crease color, use lightish eyeshadow as a cheek highlight, or get more of your brushes by using them for a different purpose then usually. For instance, I love my big, fluffy powder brush for bronzer, and my favorite concealer brush ever is in fact a fine eyeshadow brush!

5. Apply your falsies with tweezers. Hold a strip of eyelashes in the center, put them in the right place, and then push the ends to the skin with your tweezers. It's super easy!

6. Put a bit of highlighting eyeshadow or light, soft pencil on your cupid bow, just above the lips. It will pronounce your pout even further!

7. Drink water to get rid of the toxins in your body.

8. Black liner on top and bottom lashline as well as on the waterline closes the eyes. For a subtle definiton, try tightlining (eyeliner on the upper waterline), or try using different colors: brown is great for blue and green eyes, navy blue, deep green or purple looks amazing on girls with brown or hazel eyes.

9. Try to custom mix your lipstick. Take 2 or even 3 different lip products and mix them on your hand for a new and unique shade - no need to buy another lippie! Plus, you'll feel like an artist :)

10. Use clear mascara/ brow gel to tame those flyaways. I took this little trick from Ford models YouTube channel; it's especially important if you're going to have photos of you taken.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Alter Ego contest entry

Following Illamasqua contest vibes, I decided to further explore my alter ego, which in practice means participating in Posey's contest (hurry up, guys, there're only 4 days left to enter!). The rules are that you have to post 2 photos, one of your true self, the other one of your hidden alter ego.

Here's my true self:  'Everygirl' who always prefers to play it safe. (Ok, my hair is a bit wild in the photo, but you get the gist...)

My alter ego: 'Stunning Siren' (heheh). Charming, mysterious and bold. No one can resist her magnetism :) Better watch your man!

The make-up was inspired by Dior Fall 2004 look I found when researching 'fashion make-up'. The colors are not that vibrant in the photos, but the lid color is pink with a hint of purple in the inner corner, eyeliner is dark green, and there's quite a bit of white under the eye, on the lower lashline. I also used a lot of bronzer and highlighter for this look.

Hope you like it! Thanks to Posey for hosting the contest; check her blog out, I think her reviews are really honest and sensible, as well as helpful, of course! Have a great one, ladies :) xxx

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Drugstore gems: Miss Sporty Lasting Colour Nailpolish

I decided to do my pedicure today and I've  rediscovered and fallen in love again with my Miss Sporty Lasting Colour nail polishes. I have only two shades in my possession (have to get some more this summer!), but they're both gorgeous!

On the left we have shade no. 206 and on the right no. 215, amazing muted coral that I'm wearing on my toes right now (didn't take a photo of this, my feet aren't overly fascinating, tee hee).

The greyish beige is a pearl finish whereas the coral is a creamy matte. I used to wear the beige shade on my nails all the time, and I got lots of compliments on it, but no one believed me that it was just the cheap Miss Sporty nail polish! They're both easy to apply (but you need 2 coats), not streaky, reasonably fast-drying and long-lasting. I like the simple design of the bottle, which carries 7 ml of nail polish, and the brush allowing quite a precise application. But the best part is that each of them costs about 2 pounds (that's what I found on their UK website, which is silly; I bought mine in Poland and they were like 1 pound each).

I also tried their Mini Me Concealer in light, which in terms of quality was quite good for the price (2.50 pounds, again, it's approx. 1 pound cheaper in Poland) and definitely a good product to have in your make-up bag for touch-ups on the go, as well as Mini Me Eyepencil in Grizzly (medium brown); this one is a little bit too soft and not pigmented enough in my taste, but for the price, you can't really complain.

Have you tried any Miss Sporty products? How do you like them?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Barbie contest entry

As promised, I worked today on my entry for Laura's (LF Loves MU!) Barbie contest. At first, I didn't really have any inspiring idea for this contest; Barbie Loves MAC is not my sort of thing. However, I decided to google some images, hoping that I'd be able to find something appealing enough.

I came across countless sites and blogs devoted to collecting dolls, especially Barbies. It seems that Mattel releases limited edition dolls in the same manner as MAC releases limited edition lipsticks, and just as we collect make-up, there are people who collect dolls; they don't play with them, of course, they're too precious, they just want to have them in their collection and admire them from time to time.

On one of such sites I saw photos of Misaki Outsider doll from the Gothic Dream Collection, and I knew I had to recreate this look :)

Isn't it a beautiful and unique doll? Its design is inspired both by Japanese culture as well as some gothic elements, but the make-up itself reminds me a lot of the 60s. I also tried a similar hairdo, but I wasn't too successful, unfortunately. Anyhow, this is what I came up with:

Even borrowed a tie from my fiance, heheh :) I won't bore you with the foundation and so on, but this is what I used for the eyes and lips:

Revlon cream eyeshadow palette in Seashells
NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in Iced Mocha (inner corner and waterline)
NYX Ultra Pearl Mania eyeshadow in Nude on the lid
Margaret Astor black kohl eyeliner 
generic white and black eyeshadow
GOSH Eyeliner pen in black
Ardell Demi Wispies false eyelashes

NYX Long lipliner in Neutral
Bourjois Dr Glamour lipstick in Brun O'Petit Soins
The Body Shop shimmery lipgloss (the label has peeled off, so I don't know the exact name...)
Avon Color Trend lipstick in Cafe Au Lait

Thank you Laura for running the contest, preparing this look was so much fun! Hope you enjoy my entry :) Have a lovely evening, everyone!

Uneasy confession

Ok, so this is going to be embarrassing... but anyway.

You're probably going to raise your eyebrows in surprise tinted with slight disgust, but I have to confess this: I do not own any MAC eyeshadows. Not even a pan, not even a pigment sample, nothing.

Now, you're going to ask, why is that so? I could go on and make a whole list of excuses (the main reason being that the first MAC store in Poland was opened this year, so I was oblivious to all the goodies, and I only started educating myself = reading beauty blogs quite recently), but the sad truth remains the same. 

Why am I telling you this, apart from wanting to make you feel some strong emotions this morning/evening? The thing is, I'd love to hear your advice. I am planning to purchase my first, 4-pan MAC palette next month and I am wondering which colors to choose.

I know I want to fill the palette with neutral shades and I am obsessed about Satin Taupe, so there are 3 more pans to go. Please let me know in the comments what are your favorite neutral MAC eyeshadows that I should check out!

Thanks for stopping by, ladies :) xxx

Monday, May 11, 2009

My make-up pet peeves

Ok, so I am sure every one of us, beauty bloggers, could name a couple of these and, what's more, are able to spot them from at least a 100 meters distance. The most dreaded make-up mistakes have either to do with a wrong choice of the product or a wrong application technique... or sometimes both. Even celebrities are not free from committing them! Here's my list of make-up pet peeves, which I tried to illustrate with some photos.

1. Shiny/ oily face

I probably hate this one the most because I am very prone to it. Oily skin can ruin the whole make-up, making you look sweaty and gross. There's a big difference between looking dewy and having a mirror instead of a face! Absolute no no!

2. Wrong foundation shade

A too light shade can make you look ill, a too dark shade old and dirty, a too orange shade... well, you know (Paris is guilty of wearing both too light and too dark shades; quite an accomplishment, I have to admit). The best color to put on top of your skin is exactly the color of your skin; sounds very simple, but as we all know is not simple at all. If you want to slightly alter the color of your skin for a specific look, at least don't forget to cover your ears, neck and decollete too!

3. Clumpy lashes

It goes without saying that it looks just plain wrong. I cringe away from mascaras that may cause that effect ( ekhm, Margaret Astor Air Max for example...) and I hardly ever apply more than one coat. If I want fuller, spectacular lashes, I just go for falsies; takes more time but is well worth the effort.

So, what are your top make-up pet peeves?

Friday, May 8, 2009

Outfit of the day: brown and teal

Some time ago I asked you if you'd like to see my outfits too, and Steph encouraged me to do so; well, here goes my very first OOTD! Sorry for the too bright photo, my camera often freaks out like that, if you haven't noticed...

What I'm wearing today:
Teal T-shirt and leggings from H&M
A-line khaki skirt from Autograf (available in Poland at Galeria Centrum stores)
Brown velvet jacket from Orsay
Vintage leather bag (originally my mum's, she used it when she was a student, so it's probably at least 25 years old)
Necklace made from an earring (check out this post for more info)

Brown leather shoes from Bullboxer
Wooden beads bracelet brought by my parents from their trip to Egypt

Hope you enjoyed that and have a wonderful weekend!

Third place winner in Illamasqua contest!

Well, it's certainly my lucky week... I'm a third place winner in Mizz Worthy's Illamasqua contest! Check out the second and first place at Mizz Worthy's blog.

I've already chosen my prize and I will certainly show you once it arrives, which may take some time... I'm so happy that my work has been acknowledged, especially that it was my first make-up contest ever! It really boosted my confidence and I will be entering other competitions as well. I've already planned my look for Laura's Barbie contest (as promised!) and I have some ideas for other contests too, so look out for that!

Thanks again to Mizz Worthy and Krystle for running the contest and all their kind words :)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Afterlife of a solitary earring

Do you know this utter feeling of loss when you realize that one of your earrings has just been abandoned somewhere...?! Well, ok, I'm kidding, but it always gets me down, especially if it was a pair I liked. And guess what, it happened to me today when I was shopping, so I felt quite gutted... Then I decided to do something with the remaining earring(s) and this is what I came up with.

Exhibit A, two solitary earrings out of pair.

Exhibit B, two chains taken from some other necklaces.

Exhibit C, two new necklaces! Hurray!

Ok, maybe it's not such a revolutionary idea, but you get the point. I think I actually like the silver earring better as a charm... Solitary earrings can have an afterlife too!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Clothes and accessories haul

Hi my lovely bloggers, I hope everyone's having a really nice day, like I am...

Yay, I finally went shopping today! Just on my own, in no hurry, very relaxed and all... I thought if not Zara (Monday's failure), then maybe H&M :) And yes, I liked a lot of stuff there, and I have to admit H&M is my favorite store ever for nice and simple cardigans in multiple colors, which are something I wear very often and still need more of.

So I got sort of a brick, orangey red cardi and a cute tee with flowers & birds print. I couldn't decide which color combination I liked more, because they had this and also turquoise-navy blue one and I feel both looked equally good on me, but well...

Here's the t-shirt on paired with a charm necklace I bought at Claire's. 

I also got these earrings there, I think I saw very similar one's on Hele's blog, and I liked them a lot, so that's probably why I got these. They're very Indian in style and I didn't have any dangly earrings in gold...

I also got another pair of earrings at H&M, but I think I'm going to take them back to the store. There's something wrong with them and I can't put them on :(

Lastly, I got these two scarves at Stitches, they were having a 2 for $15 offer, so I couldn't resist. I actually spotted the pink one over a month ago, but was hesitant, so today was a good opportunity to buy it :) I love the pattern and the colors! The pink one is a square, and the yellow just a regular, longer scarf, so they look very differently on. I was very adventurous with the yellow, it's the only yellow thing I have in my wardrobe except for old yellow pyjamas... I feel it would be great for summer.

That's it, it was actually a big shopping spree for me... Hope you enjoy to see my clothes too, not only make-up and cosmetics. Have a great one, everyone!

I'm a Mizz Worthy's Illamasqua contest finalist!

The top 6 has just been announced and I'm so happy to be one of the finalists! Jennifer and Krystle chose my Venetian masks inspired look, which you can see and read about here.

Check out other finalists' looks, they're truly amazing. I'm really honoured to be listed among such wonderful and talented ladies!

I knew it's gonna be my lucky day when I found this penny on the street and picked it up to put it in my pocket :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Name day treats

As I mentioned in my last post, me and my fiance went shopping yesterday to get me something for my name day. I was quite excited about this and chose to go to Zara, since I haven't been there in ages and I envied Hele for her picks...

So we decided to take a walk to Robson Street, where Zara store is located, because it's always a great problem to find a parking spot anywhere near this area. It WAS cloudy, but we didn't expect major rainfall, and that was a mistake; we were soaked by the time we got home!

Once at Zara, I picked about 30 different pieces and started trying them on. I don't know why Zara has this policy, but my fiance was denied acces to my changing room and each time I wanted to show him my outfit, I had to call at him and he would peek from the distance and tell me if he liked it or not. Quite annoying, I have to admit; the staff wasn't too friendly or helpful.
The bottom line is that finally, 10 minutes before the store closed, I picked one grey t-shirt, really nothing fascinating or unique; but the truth is that it was the only thing I liked from the pile! Here it is, paired with an old necklace from H&M.

I felt really disappointed, I wanted to pick something nice so much... But that's always the case, once you decide you're saving for something, the stores are filled with beautiful clothes, and once you go and really need to buy, let's say, a cardi, they're all in ugly colors and don't fit at all.

But I didn't give up that easily! By the time we left Zara, the stores at Robson were closing in 5 minutes, but I spotted a Lush store very near and dragged my fiance there. I probably managed to do the fastest Lush shopping ever and together with my love we picked a couple of items, which I am very happy about (did I mention this was my first trip to Lush?). I was very surprised that my fiance participated actively in choosing the stuff, I thought he would be bored to death (he even got pink glitter on his nose by checking the bath bars out)... Anyway, here they are together with Stephanie Meyer's "The Host" novel, which we bought next.

In the photo, top to bottom, left to right: Candy Bar ("Sweetly scented vanilla & cocoa butter to soften your skin", my fiance's top pick - it's not butter, as it says in the description, but more like a bath bomb that makes millions of pink bubbles), Mange Tout massage bar ("Lickabley sensual, for a honey & white chocolate massage", my favorite scent so far), Ma Bar ("A comforting chocolate & honey bath for all the sweethearts", looks like it has a cane sugar cube in the middle - yummy!) and Soft Coeur massage bar ("A smooth, sensual, honey & cocoa heartbreaker of a massage bar" with a chocolate piece inside) in a tin which was free with a purchase of two massage bars.

It's funny, I actually thought I might buy some soap and I smelt Honey I washed the kids a couple of times, because so many girls on Youtube rave about it, and I really didn't like it! Maybe the scent got mixed up with other soaps, it's so difficult to choose something in the store because of too many smells...

Yesterday I tried Soft Coeur after exfoliating my body in the tub, and it glided smoothly against my skin, leaving sort of a rich, oily layer. It felt extremely moisturizing and smooth and of course I smelt amazing, like a cookie! I don't know if you've noticed, but all of our picks at Lush have almost the same scent theme: honey and chocolate. My fiance liked the feel of my skin a lot and became very 'hugable', which definitely proves it's something worth to try :) I reapplied a little bit on my shoulders this morning, because I like this smell so much... It feels very comforting and... surprise, surprise, lush!

I am defo going back to Lush in the near future to pick up some more stuff. What are your favorite Lush products?

Monday, May 4, 2009

Beautiful make-up packaging and name day update

Good afternoon, my lovelies!

Recently, I have developped a little obsession for all things looking girly, glamourous and unique (or just simply cute). It probably has something to do with the fact that I haven't gone shopping in ages and I crave something new and beautiful to look at. Mind you, I really can't say I am anywhere near to a magpie; I'm pretty sensitive to kitsch and glitter, and girls wearing too many shimmery accessories everyday are one of my pet peeves. On the other hand, I feel kinda plain and too conservative sometimes for a 20-something year old... I need some sparkle, I guess :)

I wanted to share with you some of the pictures of beautiful make-up packaging that I find inspiring. I would generally divide these into two groups: in the first set, we have 'glamourous', in the second, 'vintage'. Sooo cute!

I don't think these are too practical and yes, probably more than 50% of what you're paying for is the packaging, not the product itself. On the practical (and affordable) side, I would say I really like the packaging of GOSH products; if you have ever got your mits on the famous 'Darling' lipstick, you know what I am talking about. Also, I always loved Bourjois designs; less classic and elegant than GOSH, more modern and funky.

What is your favorite make-up packaging ever? Do you prefer vintage or glamourous?

On a different note, today's my name day (Monika) and I expect some treats coming :) My fiance promised to come back earlier from work today and we're heading to Zara, one of my favorite stores. Also, I would like to give a big shout out to Steph from Steph Stuph for being so lovely to me and including me in her 'Share the Love' post: you really made my day, honey! Also, thanks to all my followers and other people for your sweet comments, I really do appreciate them and they always make me smile inside and outside. 

Have an amazing afternoon/evening/morning (depending on your time zone) everyone!