Perfume Masterclass

Perfume and Macaroons

We build our wardrobes to fit different seasons and occasions, so why not our fragrance portfolio? When it comes to developing your own style and fashion, your fragrance is your ultimate accessory.

This week I was lucky enough to join five other ladies in a Pefume Masterclass at David Jones taught by the ever-so stylish and wise Lucy Borland, the National Training Director of Agence de Parfum. Lucy walked us through the basics of attempting to find what style of fragrance would best suit us as well as providing some insight into why it is we adore our favourite perfumes so much.

Fragrance sticks

Ever smelt a perfume on a friend and adored it, only to detest it when you try it on yourself? There are many factors that effect how a perfume will wear on you; namely diet, hormones and the natural acid levels in your skin. We are all individuals, we have different taste in fashion, food, wine and music so why not perfume? Lucy showed us the Michael Edwards fragrance wheel, which colourfully describes that there are roughly four categories for perfume fragrance (Oriental, Floral, Woody and Fresh) and within those four there are further sub-categories. Majority of us will have a natural inclination towards one of these categories, and you should attempt to build your fragrance portfolio from there.

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One of my favourite fragrance brands is Creed. The first fragrance by  Creed was made in 1781 for King George III. To this day, Creed is one of the most successful fragrance brands in the world. They design perfumes for specific people, eg. Lady Di and Audrey Hepburn, that can only be released to the public 5 years after their death, and only with permission from the family. The perfume to the left ‘Spring Flower’ was commissioned for Audrey Hepburn and is one of the most gorgeous bottles I’ve ever seen in my life. Creed has an extremely extensive collection and is worth a look if you are ever at a DJs near you. For further information on the history of the perfumes and the brand click here: http://www.creedboutique.com/

One of the most important things I took from the masterclass was where exactly to spray perfume. I knew neck, and wrists, but in fact one of the best places to spray your perfume is the back of your neck. There it holds for the longest period of time and gives you that ‘wrap around’ feeling of the lingering fragrance. Other good locations include all pulse points like the back of your knees, elbows and wrists. Lucy also recommended that spraying your perfume on warm skin straight after a shower will help with having a longer wear.

If anyone is interested in learning more about fragrance and how to find the best scents for you, Lucy will be running more of these Perfume Masterclasses, comment below for details of the most upcoming masterclass so the information is up to date each time you ask. I had the best time and I would highly recommend it.

Perfume Masterclass

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Let us know where you think you sit in the wheel. Hope you enjoyed this post and maybe see you at a Fragrance Masterclass soon.

-Rubenesque xoxo

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FRANCE: The place to be for skincare!

Hey lovelies!

So I just got back from an incredible 6 week trip overseas! And now it’s time to share with you all the amazing products I sourced in my travels!

My favourites for skincare:

  • Bioderma Créaline H20
  • Bioderma Atoderm Stick Lêvres Lip Balm
  • NUXE Reve de Miel Ultra-Nourishing Lip Balm
  • La Roche Possay Effaclar A.I. Corrector cream

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All the hype surrounding Bioderma Créaline Water…SO. AMAZING. I. CAN’T. EVEN. EXPRESS. It is the best makeup remover I have ever used! Best paired with a cotton pad as to not waste any product, one pad was enough to remove majority of my makeup before attacking my face with my favourite cleansing oil by Shu Umera. My skin has never felt better. I don’t even understand how this product works, I mean it’s pretty much water but all your makeup just glides off without putting up I fight. I don’t know how I lived without this for so long.

It was winter over in Europe so I was determined to find a great lip balm to prevent my lips from drying. I found two! The first, a lighter option, is the Bioderma Atoderm Stick Lêvres Lip Balm. Lightly fragranced and soft to the touch, this lipbalm was my savior while I was over there. Will be a must have in my handbag this coming winter in Melbourne. And second, the miracle treatment lip balm: NUXE Reve de Miel Ultra-Nourishing Lip Balm! Thick, soft and amazingly hydrating, I would put this on before bed and wake up with the most amazingly smooth and soft lips.  The most amazing thing…you barely need any product to cover your lips. For the 14euro price tag it’s definitely worth it.

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And lastly, the La Roche Possay Effaclar A.I. Corrector cream. It is the best blemish cream I have ever tried in my life! I know this seems ludicrous, my enthusiasm towards these French products, but wow…the French really know what they are doing when it comes to skincare. Travelling from Switzerland over to India my skin was not doing great with all the airplane travel and from the freezing cold of the north of India, down to the boiling 80% humidity south. Everytime I felt a pimple coming on, I would just put some of this miracle gel on and it would be significantly reduced in appearance by morning. I never expect treatment creams to be miracle workers and make a blemish disappear overnight but this product is the closest I’ve come to finding such a thing.

So these are my top recommendations for French skincare. I hope this post has helped some of you get some ideas of products to look out for in the future. Please let us know if you have any other amazing skincare recommendations! Always looking to try and review new products 🙂

-Rubenesque xoxo

Fall and Winter Recommendations!

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So we are well into Spring here in Australia, but I felt that I couldn’t leave Winter behind without sharing with the rest of you my favourites from the season. So let’s get straight into it!

Lips:

We all know that the colder seasons are perfect for those grungy-vampy dark lips, but one of my more favourite shades for the past winter was ‘Naked Paris’ by M.A.C. It is a really subtle shimmery-nude colour, with just enough darkness to grunge up your look a little. Lipstick Swatches

Another favourite was ‘Poisonberry’ by Lime Crime. This is a vibrant but dark purple at its full pigmentation. In most online swatches you’ll see it as a gorgeous dark sheen of purple, however, for an everyday look I tended to pat it onto my lips to a pigmentation that I was comfortable with. I’ll swatch it for you at both pigmentation levels so just check the images to the side.

I get really into stains in Winter too, because I’m always putting lip balm on to avoid chapped lips. Stains are a great way to keep some colour while continuously applying the balms that we so desperately need in the cold. Two of my favourite stains are ‘Rhubarb’ by Bloom Cosmetics and ‘Posietint’ by Benefit Cosmetics. Where Rhubard is a definite dark vampy shade, posietint can be used on both the lips or the cheeks to give a natural flushed look which can be really flattering in the colder seasons.

And last but not least the lip product that took the makeup world by storm last season ‘Solstice 201′ from the Apocalips series by Rimmel London! These gorgeous liquid lipsticks are so incredible, sit so well on the lips, give great pigmentation and have a cute colour range for most seasons. Well worth a look in the coming seasons *fingers crossed they release some more shades*

Eyes:

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This fall and winter I didn’t really discover many new eye products that I liked in terms of eyeliner or mascara but as far as eyeshadow goes, I found myself coming back to the same palette most days. The Nude ‘tude palette by theBalm has so many fantastic neutrals with enough warm, dark shades to really grunge up your look for Winter. As far as selling it to you further, I really feel that this palette speaks for itself so check out the images.

Cheeks:

theBalm really stood out to me in the last season, with their blush ‘Down Boy’ being another favourite. (though I really feel that it is a great shade for any season)

As a highlight and finishing powder for the under-eye area I found myself wearing Hourglass’ Ambient lighting powder in ‘Diffused Light’ it is a stunning (yet ridiculously expensive) powder with just enough shimmer in it that it really lights up your face without making you feel like you are covered in glitter.

Nails:

I have really been getting into Butter London nail polishes in the last year. They always have great pigmentation, great lasting power and not too long a drying period so as you can imagine, I use them all the time. My two favourite shades for Fall and Winter would be ‘Queen Vic’ and ‘Gobsmacked’. I would highly recommend most of the glitter polishes from Butter London as they dry ridiculously fast which is always a bonus, and look so cute!

Battle of the Mascaras

Mascara

Recently we went to Chanel to purchase the illustrious Vitalumière Aqua foundation. When we were there the shop assistant gave both of us samples of their new mascara: Le Volume de Chanel. So we thought we’d try it out and do a review to compare it to the drugstore mascaras of our current collection and decide if the High-end brands are really worth the hype.

High End makeup brands…we all want them in our collection, don’t lie ladies. The packaging, the colour range, the hype; we are all very easily sucked in. Unfortunately, purchasing these items puts a serious dent in our savings. But often you are paying for quality, so it’s worth it. But don’t be fooled! Many of these products are not worth the hype, and often there are products from cheaper brands that produce really similar results.

It is worth doing your research before making such expensive purchases. Good sources for easy research include youtube and beauty blogs.

Today we are endeavoring to compare a couple of high-end mascaras with some of our favourite drugstore mascaras.

Covergirl Lash Perfection Mascara 

Advertised as a volumising mascara that gives a ‘dramatic look’ with a brush that attempts to coat each lash individually. From personal experience it does have really great separation of the lashes that gives a quite natural, volumising look. No clumps, and lasts on the eyes all day. I wouldn’t say that it’s that ‘dramatic’ in its volume but it’s great for a slightly voluminous, natural looking lashes. We give this mascara 8/10.

Maybelline Define-a-lash (waterproof formula)

This is NOT WATERPROOF! Both of us will testify that we initially really liked this mascara, but the formula changed and since then we just haven’t been as happy. Also, unlike the advertising, it is not waterproof and smudges when wet, however, is still ridiculously hard to wash off your eyes at the end of the day. Nevertheless there are positives to this mascara. It provides great length and definition whilst minimally enhancing volume so gives a fairly natural look. It advertises as a mascara that ‘elongates and accentuates the lashes’ so overall it almost lives up to expectations. We give this mascara 6.5/10.

Maybelline The Falsies Flared

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A mascara that has a pro-keratin formula, in my personal opinion it doesn’t visually make a difference but may be better for your lashes as keratin is a main component in hair. The falsies is one of my favourite, it is extremely thickening and lengthening, it does give you great looking lashes but I still wouldn’t go as far to say that they look like falsies. I do love the thick curved wand, it is really great  at curling the eyelashes and the formula does hold the curl a pretty well. The formula is quite thin and wet but the bristles tend to dry out the product quickly. The only bad thing I have to say about this mascara is its longevity, after only a few hours it starts to mildly flake off, it isn’t a deal breaker but just a slight annoyance. We give this mascara 9/10. 

Revlon Grow Lucious Mascara 

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Okay so this is a mascara that I really love, what I look for most in a mascara is longevity. And this mascara lasts perfectly, there is no smudging or flaking as long as you don’t get wet. The large brush claims to plump and visibly lengthens lashes and I have to say I agree. The brush is very large which I like but I know many people hate them, so I guess this mascara may not be for those people. It has a wet think formula that lengthens the lashes but I would say it doesn’t give much volume to them, I like the formula though as it is easy to apply and dries quickly. As for the claims that it helps to grow your lashes, I don’t think that it has done anything to my natural lashes, however I didn’t buy this mascara with the hopes that it would work so there wasn’t any disappointment from me. This mascara is a good drugstore version of my holy-grail one. We give this mascara 9.5/10.

Covergirl lash blast length 

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This mascara gives great length and beautiful separated lashes but basically no volume giving the overall effect on the lashes a nice natural look. I love this mascara for everyday when you don’t really feel like wearing makeup. It is buildable and you can  get a little more volume if you want that sort of look. It claims to be water-resistant which I haven’t yet fully tested, but I have never had an issue with smudging or flaking. We give this mascara 8/10.

Le Volume de Chanel (10 noir)

Advertises as a mascara that provides ‘volume and curl – lash by lash’. And it definitely delivered! It is incredibly light weight, so doesn’t weigh down the lashes over the day. Lasts all day and looks exactly as you applied it in the morning! Gorgeous deep black colour with amazing separation of the lashes that gives you such an incredible volumising and lengthening look. We honestly couldn’t believe how amazing our lashes looked with it on.

We give this mascara 11/10!

They’re Real Benefit

Probably one of the best mascaras on the market at the moment. And yes, you have probably seen about 1 million reviews on this already. With good reason. It really lives up to it’s name with about 95% of people who try it. It advertises that it ‘lengthens, curls, volumizes, lifts and separates’ and it really does all that! And on top of all that it has great long lasting results! The brush is also fantastic in that it allows you to get into those small lashes closer to your nose that sometimes get left behind. The formula lasts all day and doesn’t weigh your lashes down at all. Unfortunately, although it is not as expensive as some of the other mascaras that are considered ‘high end’ it still costs a pretty penny. We  give this mascara 9/10.

Dior Extase

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This is a great mascara, it has one of those wavy wands that look like three balls have been stuck together. I am a big fan of these wands but I know it is personal preference because Carla hates them. These wands give your eyelashes a super curled effect and make your lashes look fantastic. There are a few downsides however, the formula dries up quickly, it is a dark grey instead of black (like advertised) and it weighs down your eyelashes which means after a couple of hours you have already lost the brilliant curl that the mascara wand just gave you. The mascara really does give you great looking lashes, it lengthens and gives great volume  We give this mascara 6/10.

Lancome Virtuose 

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One of our higher end mascaras Lancome Virtuose was one of the first wands to have this curved shape when brands like Maybelline (with the falsies flared) caught onto the trend. I do love this mascara but for the $30 price tag I’d rather go with the falsies flared as the formula is almost identical. The only reason I would go over this over the falsies is because of the wand, it grabs every single lash (even those little ones still growing) and lengthens, separates and gives amazing volume. I would love to try out the Hypnose version of this one as I tend to like the wavy wands more. We give this mascara 9/10. 

Just remember that everyone has a different eye shape and different preferences so we can’t guarantee our experiences will be universal. However, we believe the clear winner is…

DRUM ROLL PLEASE!

Le Volume De Chanel!

Considering that mascaras only last 3-4 months and most people won’t want to spend $160 on mascara a year, we believe that the close runner up is Revlon Grow Lucious.

So the final verdict, are high end mascaras worth it? Well in our honest opinion with the short expiry date on most mascaras and the large price tags, luxury mascaras are just that, luxury items. Overall they are better quality mascaras, they make your lashes look incredible and generally last longer than drug store ones, but for three to four times the price it just isn’t worth it on a day to day basis. Besides drug store brands over the past year have really picked up their game and the quality has skyrocketed. Don’t get us wrong, high end brands and their mascaras are amazing and if you feel like a spluge the price definitely reflects the quality, we recommend them for special occasions and days where you feel like an extra kick with your look.

Hope you enjoyed

xxx Rubenesque

(PS. If you have any questions regarding specific use, retail price, or anything else, feel free to comment below and we will reply as best we can)

Eyeshadow Colour Guide

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Matching eye colour with shadows is one of the most basic but important things when doing your makeup. It is something that can be completely overwhelming so we figured that we would write up a simple guide for matching your eye colour with complementary as well as enhancing colours. Please note, this is only a guide, we strongly believe in experimenting with makeup and doing whatever you feel most comfortable in. We would also like to point out that these colours will vary depending on skin tone. We hope this is helpful and enjoy.

Warm Green Eyes:

Enhancing: plum purples, red-browns

Complementary: cool greens, warm browns, oranges, cool greys (taupes)

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Cool Green Eyes:

Enhancing: cool greens, warm purples, cool purples, light pinks

Complementary: warm greens, cool browns, cool greys

NOTE: stay away from bright blues

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Blue-Grey Eyes:

Enhancing: coral

Complementary: any browns, nudes, peach

NOTE: if you have blue-grey eyes and you want them to look bluer, stay away from shadows that are a brighter blue than your eye as they will make your eyes look dull in colour.

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Blue-Blue Eyes:

Enhancing: warm purples, coral, warm browns, darker blues

Complementary: any browns, nudes

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Warm Brown Eyes:

Enhancing: cool purples, dark blues, cool greens

Complementary: all browns, nudes, oranges

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Dark Brown Eyes:

Enhancing: warm purples, warm yellows, warm oranges, all blues

Complementary: all browns, nudes

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If you are looking for some new and broad eyeshadow palettes on a budget we highly recommend this website: http://www.bhcosmetics.com/eyes

For amazing quality customizable palettes we would recommend INGLOT

http://www.inglotcosmetics.com