Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Myth of Ghosts

This post has been circling around my head for a few years, came out of an experience that happened when I was younger and has resurfaced because of the Amy Whinehouse discussions of the past week. In fact this post really has nothing to do with her at all apart from to illustrate an observation of disturbing human behaviour - the re birthing of the dead into saints and angels.

Let me start at the beginning. When I was 16 my father died. He died suddenly and was only 39 at the time. My mother and father had divorced when I was 5 and the majority of my family memories involving my dad include my mum's anger at him being unreliable (not paying child support on time, turning up on his visitation days... you know that kind of thing). As a child I did what any child does - I did anything I could to prove that I was worthy of his love. A futile exercise given he died before I could even accomplish graduating high school. I only disclose these details to explain why at 16 I didn't really know who my dad was - as a real person.

After my dad died though, he was no longer a somewhat irresponsible risk taking, unreliable parent. He became perfect. Stories of his humour and cheekiness where shared freely, while those that showed a darker or dare I say more human side were kept from me. Looking back on the behaviour that followed his death, I can now see the wider family dealing with the shock of his death as much as I was. But the outcome of this behaviour was to create the myth of a man who never existed and that I didn't know. That became another painful dart in addition to the one of never getting to know who my father really was anyway.

Think now to the death of pretty much every celebrity and can't you see the same process happening? Micheal Jackson is no longer a drug-addicted, recluse with questionable relationships with younger people but just the King of Pop and a misunderstood rock idol. Today Amy Whinehouse is no longer the butt of "how pathetic" comments (which were never helpful given that I believe addiction is a disease) and is now a shining musical talent taken from us tragically too soon and number 1 on iTunes.

Obviously influenced by my own experiences I find this need to re-invent human beings into angelic creatures that never did anything wrong extremely dishonest and disrespectful to the memory of the person affected. If I die tomorrow I might expect people to say I was kind, clever and funny but you know what I was also equally pig-headed, irritable and selfish and to forget that is to forget who I really was (or am).

Just my opinion.

Jac x

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Top 10 and Sunshine Awards

Recently I was nominated for a Top Ten award by the fabulous Miss Flossy of Flossy Locks and a Sunshine award from the lovely Su of My Perfume Diaries. These awards have slightly different rules with the Top 10 asking you to list your top 10 products, while the Sunshine award has me telling you 10 things about myself before nominating 10 other bloggers (a requirement of both).

So let's jump into 10 things about me (gosh I am scrounging here)...
  1. I was born in Tasmania but grew up in Adelaide.
  2. I wanted to be like Clarice Starling when I was in year 11 and 12 and fancied that I would head off to University to study forensic psychology.
  3. I watched a bit of the original Nightmare on Elm Street when I was a kid and it gave me nightmares for a week (the scene where Freddy scrapes his nails on the fence as he runs up the lane).
  4. I used to stay with my grandparents for school holidays when I was young and they had sheep and I loved being in that clean country air.
  5. I struggle with claustrophobia - it's mostly an issue where people bring up being buried alive but I also have trouble where people are in tight spaces in movies or TV shows.
  6. I used to wear a "Who Killed Laura Palmer" badge on my school uniform when Twin Peaks was all the range.
  7. I am pretty much allergic to something in most alcohol products and that means no wine, very few spirits and no beer. I miss wine - it's lovely.
  8. My mum and I graduated from university the same year.
  9. I didn't get my driver's licence until I was 26 years old.
  10. My home is my sanctuary and I struggle to entertain because of that. I don't want lots of other people in my space but would love to go out with heaps of people to a restaurant any day of the week.

Now onto my 10 favourite products:
  1. Zoya Nail Polish - I guess that's a no brainer right? For reliability and complexity of formula they are pretty much the cat's meow IMO.
  2. Revlon Colorburst Lipstick in Iced Nude - This is a gorgeous colour and formulation. While the markup on Revlon outside the US stings this is one shade I adore.
  3. NYX Lip gloss with Mega Shine - This is my HG lip gloss formula - it lasts without being sheer or sticky and for $4 they cannot be beaten.
  4. Too Faced Neutral Eye Palette - if you love neutral and shimmer (not glitter) this palette is universally flattering and suitable all year round. I like this one over the NAKED palette because the colours are lighter.
  5. Inglot eye shadows - for range of colours, varied finishes and price these eye shadows are unbeatable IMO. While other ranges may have one standout shade here and there, Inglot beats all others I have tried for consistency and quality.
  6. Sukin Creamy Cleanser - I started using this one after giving up my Neutrogena one and I love it. Not only does it get rid of most makeup (not sure how it would cope with waterproof stuff), it smells Divine AND is Carbon neutral. I'll do a proper review of this cleanser soon.
  7. MAC Opulash Mascara - obviously everyone's eyes are different but this mascara makes a massive difference on my lashes, it doesn't irritate my eyes and my lashes still feel soft. I've gone through 1 tube already and have a back up ready to crack once all my others are done.
  8. Rimmel Silky Finish Loose Powder - this loose powder is just gorgeous for dry skin. I'm almost through 1 container and will be buying another one for sure. Best in the drugstore for dry skin IMO.
  9. Nars Sheer Glow - I haven't tried a lot of high end foundations but NARS was one I ordered while cashed up a few months ago. It is neither sheer nor glowy but the finish is incredibly natural. If it had SPF my search would be over.
  10. Peach blushes  - I have a few I adore MAC's Miss Behave and Milani's Luminoso are both equally gorgeous examples.

And now it's time to nominate 10 other fabulous people. Some of these lovelies may have been nominated before and if you are listed here and you have done the tag already please leave a link to your post in the comments below.
  1. Eat Paint Sniff Glue
  2. Miss Prissypants
  3. Jade Musing
  4. The Science of Beauty
  5. Keeping Up With Me
  6. Add Cart to Blog
  7. Commander in Chic
  8. My Perfume Diaries (love to know your 10 fav products)
  9. Becoming Beautiful
  10. Vintage Makeup
And if you aren't listed above and you feel inspiried to blog, I'd love to hear your Top 10 too.

Happy weekend to everyone

Jac x

Monday, July 18, 2011

Blog Sale

Ok it's time to make way for some of my new stuff and more importantly send off some of my unused items that deserve to be loved by others.

Here we go:
  • This blog sale is for Australian residents only (sorry everyone else).
  • All prices quoted are in Australian dollars (AUD).
  • Postage is $5AUD for up to 5 items and $8AUD for more than that.
  • No items will be posted before Saturday 23 July (due to work commitments).
  • Sales are final - please feel free to ask questions before buying and I have done my best to show everything as accurately as I can.
  • I am happy to hold something for 24hrs if you need to ask questions or just want time to makeup your mind.
  • Unless shown in the picture assume that original packaging has been removed. Most items will still have original brushes (except for the 88 palettes -which were removed as a result of
  • Please email me at to buy something and first in best dressed of course.
88 Palettes ($10)- these have been swatched and used maybe a handful of times each.

88 Ultra Shimmer - picture taken without flash

88 Warm - - picture taken without flash

Sleek Palettes ($8) - these have been swatched and used maybe a handful of times each. Please note these come with a plastic cover sheet which I placed across the mirrors in the shots - the mirror is not actually covered in eye shadow (picture fail).

The Original (594)
Sunset (568) SOLD

 Storm (578) SOLD

Stila Haute in the Hamptons Palette ($10) - worn eye shadows once and swatched blush and bronzer once.

Urban Decay Ammo Palette ($25) - all colours swatched (pictures on the blog) but never got around to wearing it. (sold)

MAC Venomous Villians goodies - all in original packaging.

Beauty Powder in Oh So Fair ($25 ) - swatched for blog and worn once or twice.

Lipgelee in Resort Life ($15)-  swatched for blog and worn once or twice.

 MAC Sheertone Blush in Pink Swoon - ($10) - used several times. SOLD

MAC Single Eyeshadows ($10) - some colours just swatched and never worn but most colours have been worn a few times - always applied with makeup brushes.

Phloof!(frost), Naked Lunch (frost), Shroom (satin), Ricepaper (frost)

Gleam (lustre), Bold and Brazen (starflash), Expensive Pink (veluxe pearl), Mulch (velvet)

Green-smoke (lustre), Pink Venus (lustre), steamy (frost), moon's reflection (veluxe pearl)

MAC Studio Moisture Fix SPF15 ($20)- 24m on the bottle had it for less than 12m. Used less than 10 times - my skin was too dry.

Purminerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup SPF15 in Porcelain ($10) - used twice with brush

Mirenesse Velvet Maxi Lift Foundation in Vanilla ($10) - used twice.

Eyeko Nail Polish - being sold as a group - ($14) - used once or twice to do nail tips. A couple worn by me on the blog in NOTD and some not worn at all like Rain and Vampira

Ok that's it for now. Next task in a nail polish and NYX sale but I'll need to psych myself up for that in the months to come lol.

    Friday, July 15, 2011

    NOTD: Zoya's Charla

    For those of you getting sick of my obsession with Zoya polishes I hope you will begin to understand my fascination with them after seeing this lovely. Is she green? Is she Blue? Is she both? I'll tell you what she is - FREAKING AWESOME.

    Zoya describes this colour as a "topical blue sparkling metallic" and to be fair they have hit it on the head. The base appears to be teal with green-gold shimmer but move the bottle in the light and you will see all those colours and more. Unfortunately the green colour isn't showing up in the pictures -must be camera shy but trust me it's there.

    It's pretty freaking gorgeous right? All photos were taken in natural light and have 2 coats. I am almost 100% sure there is no top coat - but I didn't write it down (sorry!).

    What Zoya shades have stolen your heart?

    Tuesday, July 12, 2011

    NOTD: Zoya's Indigo

    Ok I was so excited when this polish turned up - It's freaking DARK navy with multicoloured microglitter. While I love shades like these I usually find them horrific to apply as the dark polish stains my fingers around my nail in a way that looks like I got one of my cats to do my polish for me. Not so this time people, Indigo played very nicely and as such I adore her for that.

    Now I love Zoya but I also call a spade a spade  so while Indigo was a dream to apply it did not really have visible microglitter in it like the bottle suggests once it was applied. It is certainly no deal breaker but I was disappointed all the same.

    My apologies about the return of the ugly yellow wall but it was the only way to show how dark this is but still navy in sunlight. This polish was opaque in one coat but I did 2 as usual. I also used my seche vite top coat as I have found it plays nicely with Zoya - who knew? Unfortunately I can't say how long this would have lasted as I broke 2 nails moving the coffee table after only 2 days and my Indigo mani could not be saved :(

    Is Indigo your idea of winter polish perfection or are dark shades not on your radar?

    Monday, July 11, 2011

    Just a quickie about posting and comments this week

    I'm in Melbourne this week so have organised some NOTD posts featuring my much loved Zoya polishes but wont be able to respond to comments until I return home next Friday.

    Hope you like what you see until I return.

    Jac x

    NOTD: Zoya's Tallullah

    OMG I have been waiting for a blue to come along like this my whole life. This is as close to blue perfection as it gets for me and just reaffirms every positive thought I have about Zoya Nail Polish. I cannot understand why this brand is not raved about more - they are in my opinion pretty untouchable.

    These pictures were taken outside in natural sunlight after 5 days - yep that's right 5 days and all I can see is a small chip on my naughty finger. I had this colour applied while enjoying a professional manicure so this also has a top coat on top.

    Did anyone else think of Jodie Foster's character in Bugsy Malone when they saw the name of this shade or am I showing my age?

    The wrap up of this NOTD in 2 words or less - polish perfection.

    Sunday, July 10, 2011

    Empties for June 2011

    I've seen a few people do these posts and I love reading them so thought I would give it a try as June was a month where I finished a few items:

    Matrix Biolage Volumatherapie Shampoo and Conditioner - I purchased larger sizes of these from Strawberrynet and consider them some of the finest products I have used for my hair which is fine and limp. These made my hair feel fuller and stronger without any weight or gunky feeling. I adore them and will probably purchase them again in the future - I am currently trying Amplify which I have been interested in for ages.

    Neutrogena Extra Gentle Cleanser - I LOVE THIS CLEANSER. It is a HG item for me as it removes all traces of makeup without making my skin feel dry or greasy. However I have consciously decided not to purchase it again as Neutrogena test on animals according to beautypedia. I purchased Sukin's creamy cleanser and I hope to report good things after testing that out.

    Oilatum Natural Repair Face Cream - I heard about this from Nic on Pixiwoo and decided to try it as they both have dry skin. I purchased mine from eBay and when I got it my skin was in the process of going off the rails after I was using a new moisturiser that it didn't like (and cost me a fortune). I used it day and night and my skin got back to normal in no time at all (I used this in conjunction with Palmers Gentle Daily Cleanser). I am on my second tube and am using this as my daytime moisturiser. Love, love, love it.

    MAC Prep and Prime - Ok the product itself is gorgeous. Hands down this is the best primer I have used however there a couple of things I have an issue with. Number 1 - black container means you have no freaking idea how much is left and even full this thing is as light as air. Number 2 - 6 month shelf life for a 30ml primer that is completely sealed seems ridiculous to me. Neither of these are deal breakers but if they were addressed this would definitely become HG for me. It's almost HG now.

    Hope you are all having a lovely Sunday

    Jac x

    Favourites June 2011

    Here are my monthly favourites finally - sorry about the delay but I had to reinstall my picture editing program on my new laptop before posting. Oh yes I said new laptop....and I LOVES IT! Anyway onto the good stuff:

    Foundation: Bourjois Healthy Mix was my foundation of choice for this month - mostly as I was trying to consistently use it to write a review - see how I sacrifice myself for you guys? lol

    Blush:Physicians Formula Shimmer Stip in Vegas Strip.While this is meant to be used as a bronzer it can be used lightly to add some colour and sheen (no glitter here) to the skin.

    Powder: Rimmel silky powder. This is a hero product for me and it's almost empty. I am yet to find a foundation that this powder doesn't suit.

    Eyeshadow: I was lazy last month and rarely wore eyeshadow. I feel to put in a favourite here would almost be misleading

    Mascara: I popped open my last tube of NYX Doll Eye Volume mascara. The wand on this mascara reminds me of the wooden tools they use to get honey out. I prefer the lengthening formula but for $7US this is a nice, dark, non-irritating formula. 

    Lipstick/Product: Revlon Colourburst in Icy Nude. I only purchased this late in the month but this shade is STUNNING. While the price on these is crazy for a drugstore product I purchased it with some found dollars so the sting was small.

    Skincare: My skin was prone to breakouts and was bitchy for the whole month. Palmers Gentle Daily Cleanser with Milk Proteins and Antioxidants made my face clean without upsetting what was a pretty out of sorts face already.

    Hair: Biolage Volumatherapie Shampoo and Conditioner. I have loved these, gone off them and come back around just in time to empty them out again. Lovely product for fine/brittle hair in need of some volume.

    Perfume: Truth time - when I am stressed, sick etc... the first things to go for me are fragrance and eye shadow. I only wore my perfume while I was away for work and the one I took with me (and glad I did) was Giorgio Armani's Aqua di Gioia. This is a lovely perfume and I am a big fan.

    Other: I have 2 products for this section:
    • Chapstick 100% Naturals Lip Balm in Botanical Medley - Canberra made my lips as dry as hell and this sorted them back out. It smells nice and was pretty cheap - it's now permanently in my hand bag.
    • Skin Food Aloe Sun BB Cream SPF 20 PA+ - I blame Jade for this purchase and do so happily as I jumped merrily onto the BB band wagon. If you have read my blog for 5 seconds you've probably seen me bitching somewhere about coverage for redness and SPF. This has both and made my skin feel as soft as it did when I was young(er). Gorgeous product - please go and check out Jade's review if you are interested.
    What were your favourites of the month?

    Wednesday, July 6, 2011

    First Impressions: Sigma Cleansing and Polishing Tool.

    As you guys know I like to take my time before doing a review but at the same time this means that something has been around a while before my thoughts get added to the list, so I am trying something different by giving my first impressions about this product.

    Ok before we get started I just need to get a couple of things out
    1. I do not own any of the other brush cleansing tools so I wont be doing any kind of comparison. I will only be giving my opinion about this tool.
    2. My skin is dry, prone to sensitivity, redness and (if you look at it wrong) break outs.

    I decided to order this product after many discussions with Dee about cleansing tools (she owns a MIA) and whether they are useful for people with dry skin. At a price point of $50 including shipping, I was prepared to take a punt on this product as a lot of the cheaper cleansing tools are not easily available in Australia.

    This package arrived in a gorgeous pink and white box (shown above) making it perfect for gift giving. Inside there was a plastic container housing the tool, 3 brush heads and the instructions (sorry mine look a little tatty as I have been using them) -

    As you can see it comes with 3 brush heads the pink one (which I put on myself) is for sensitive skin. The pink and white head is for normal skin and the white head is for occasional exfoliation for people with normal skin. It is very easy to change the heads and while replacement heads are not currently available on the web site they will be soon.

    The unit itself runs on battery power (AA) and is quite light. It also has 2 speeds which you change by pressing the pink button on the front of the unit. Pretty easy and straightforward to use. The bristles also move by rotating as opposed to some of the other ones I have heard about on the market that use sonic technology.

    The only thing that seemed a little disappointing was that the part holding everything in place is just a piece of thin plastic -

    Don't get me wrong this is no deal breaker as you can remove it and store everything else inside the outer casing quite safely.

     Now onto the important part - how did it work for my skin?

    I decided to start gently with this one and so I have only used it every second day and for cleansing only after my makeup has already been removed.  I like it - what isn't pleasant about having your face cleaned for you? I did notice that the pink brush bristles collapsed against the skin if I didn't pay attention to how much pressure I was using as I moved it across my face. I think this is because it is the 'soft' head and would probably only be an issue for sensitive people like myself. I guess it just ensures that I pay attention rather than drift off for the time I am cleansing. My skin feels lovely afterwards and I'm now ready to try using this one daily.

    I also use the pink and white brush head to do a weekly exfoliation as per the directions that come with the tool and I love it. I find that having dry skin makes me want to scrub it off and I fell like this is happening using this head - but not in any kind of harsh way. I would never use it daily on my skin but as a weekly treat I think it will definitely ensure there is minimal build up from now on.

    Positive first impressions:
    • nice box
    • good clear instructions
    • easy to use unit that is pretty as well as light
    • brush heads are clearly marked and easy to rotate
    • seems to be doing the job -skin happy and not irritated
    • reasonably priced and easily available

    Neutral/negative first impressions:
    • inner plastic looks like it would break over time
    • worried about price of replacement heads (and how often heads will need to be replaced.

    Do I recommend to others - given it's price and quality it's a nice easy dip of the toe into the cleansing tool pool. I've tried to give an accurate overview of the kit and the options I have been using that are working for my skin and for $50 I am feeling pretty chuffed right now. Yay for me! lol.

    Please feel free to leave any questions below and I'll get back to you as quickly as I can.

    Jac x