Saturday, 19 May 2018

April Favourites

Hi beauties!

April has come and gone and I'm left wondering where the time went. Now that we are heading into the colder months in Australia it's the time when routines change, the days turn shorter and suddenly staying in on a Saturday night sounds so much more appealing. Melbourne has been absolutely freezing lately and while I normally love winter, this year I am dreading it. Luckily I have my Europe trip coming up so I'll miss a whole month of winter; hooray! 

Lately I have been trialling some new skincare products as my skin is needing all the moisture it can get. I''ll be sharing these with you, along with everything else I've tried during April.

I was lucky enough to win a LaMav Skincare Anti-Ageing Skincare pack via an Instagram competition recently. I am yet to try the entire range (I plan to put a post up when I do) however the standout product for me is the Antioxidant Rich Nightly Repair Nectar. This is honestly heaven in a bottle; or to be more concise, a blend of flower nectars of Rose, Ylang Ylang and Neroli that deeply hydrate dry, dehydrated skin to restore radiance. It is specifically designed for fine lines and wrinkles, which at the age of 33 I obviously need to think about. I have been applying this each night before moisturiser and it leaves my skin so smooth and hydrated. I will keep you up to date with my progress! 

The Eco Tan Face Tan Water has been a serious game changer for me. After seeing countless before and after photos and testimonies splashed across social media I was super curious to see if it really worked. I finally bit the bullet and picked one up for myself and I can safely say that it lives up to the hype. It is meant to be applied the same way as a toner, and I find patting it on with my fingers works best. It does an amazing job of tanning the skin in a very natural way, so you end up looking sun kissed and fresh. I normally apply it every night and my skin always looks great in the morning. Regular self-tanner has always broken my skin out so it is really the only alternative for me. I highly recommend trying this out if you like to look naturally tanned year around. I've also had a lot of compliments from using it which is always a good sign! 

I bought the Models Own Sculpt & Glow Highlighter Powder in Golden Sand after seeing it on the Noted Beauty Blog by Lisa. As you may know I am a huge highlighter fan and am forever searching for the next best thing.  Golden Sand is an unusual shade; in the pan it looks quite golden however once applied to the skin it gives an almost iridescent colour with a lot of fine shimmer. I am really enjoying this highlighter and love to layer it on at nighttime as it shows up nicely. I'd recommend this highlighter if you're after a heavier finish. 

The LaMav Anti-Ageing Minerals Organic BB Creme* was gifted from a PR company at the same time I won the skincare pack; how's that for timing! As you may know I love BB creams and prefer them to foundation on weekends or when I want a lighter coverage. Simply put, this BB Creme is amazing. It contains natural sunscreen, a multifunctional corrector and is suitable for all skin types. The finish is incredible; it has a heavier coverage than most BB cremes I've tried but still manages to feel light on the skin. The finish is quite matte and natural; it looks as if you aren't wearing makeup which is perfect for weekends. I have it in the shade medium which is slightly too dark for my natural skin colour however perfect after I've self-tanned. I am very happy with this BB Creme and will continue to wear it on weekends. 

The Colourpop Super Shock Shadow in High Tea is a super shimmery coral/peach shade which I wear as both an eyeshadow and cheek highlighter. I love to wear this shade during the day for a pop of colour (although keep in mind it is super shimmery so use a light hand!). You can read my full review here for more details. 

I recently picked up this Rimmel Scandaleyes Brow and Liner Kajal in Hypnotic Gold from Chemist Warehouse after testing it out in store. The pigment in this pencil is incredible; it shows up as a true gold on the skin and stays put for a really long time. I am not sure how this is a brow liner though; it's a soft gold shade and I can't imagine using this to line my brows? I use it to line my lower eye line to make me look more awake. The pencil is super soft and glides onto the eye without tugging or scratching the eye area. I'd be interested to purchase this liner in black as it would make the perfect eyeliner. 

I haven’t read any new books this month however I am rereading some old favourites. I am currently halfway through Me Before You and After You simultaneously; it’s been nice to revisit Lou and Will’s story although it’s ultimately a tragic tale. If you haven’t read this book series yet I highly recommend it! 

That’s it for my April favourites! It was a bit quiet on the non beauty front however I did make it up with reviewing a lot of makeup and skincare products! 

What did you enjoy during April? 

xo Roxane

*Products were kindly gifted for consideration, however this does not impact on my review or thoughts and all opinions remain 100% my own.

Friday, 11 May 2018

REVIEW: At-Home Teeth Whitening: Does It Really Work?

I have always been self-conscious about my teeth. Growing up, I had super wonky, crooked teeth that grew every which way and I hated them. It didn’t help that I have a huge smile (Luna Park big people!) so everything was magnified to epic proportions. Braces during my teen years were a lifesaver and after they came off, I felt confident for the first time in my life. These days I am pretty happy with my teeth, however the only problem I have now is colour discolouration from all of the tea I drink. I have tried several brands of teeth whitening toothpastes, and even trialled the famous Crest strips and while these made a slight difference, I was looking for something more noticeable. So when Smile Brilliant reached out to me and asked if I’d like to try their teeth whitening kit* I jumped at the chance. I have wanted to whiten my teeth for the longest time so it really was the perfect opportunity. 

Smile Brilliant offers an affordable teeth whitening system without the hefty price tag, all in the comfort of your own home. The quality of Smile Brilliant’s teeth whitening system is comparable to a professional dentist quality kit so you’re essentially getting the same results for a fraction of the cost. It is perfect for people who are on a budget or who would rather whiten their teeth in private than in a dentist’s chair. 

I was sent a kit complete with whitening and desensitizing syringes, instructions and putty to create my impressions (which brought back memories of sitting in my orthodontist’s chair and creating impressions for my braces all those years ago). 

Step 1. Creating the impressions 
The process to create your impressions is super easy. Smile Brilliant send you a kit complete with mould pastes, impression trays and clear instructions on how the entire process works. Smile Brilliant also offer amazing customer support and will answer any questions you have. I was in contact with Ashley from Smile Brilliant and she was well, brilliant with answering all of my queries and concerns throughout the entire process. 

To crate your moulds, simply mix one Base paste with one Catalyst paste. This will form the putty that will take the impressions of your teeth. After the putty is mixed, roll it loosely into a sausage shape and push it lightly into the impression tray. You fit the mould onto your teeth for around 3 minutes to create the impression, making sure to fit each tooth in. Repeat this step for your bottom teeth. Don’t worry if you mess up as Smile Brilliant provide an extra set of paste. The moulds will harden after around an hour. After rinsing them off, simply place them into the padded envelope that’s provided and post to Smile Brilliant, along with the mandatory consent card. 
Step 2. Receiving the plates

My custom made trays arrived about two weeks later. I was expecting it to be a hard plastic, similar to what I wore after my braces all those years, ago. Instead, they are soft, mouldable and fit my teeth perfectly. Needless to say, I was super excited to start the journey towards my Hollywood smile. 
Step 3. The whitening process

Smile Brilliant recommend whitening once a day, anywhere from 45 minutes to 3 hours, depending on sensitivity. It is strongly suggested that you whiten right before bed, as there is less chance of eating and drinking. Beforehand, brush your teeth with only water and dry the mouth. To whiten the teeth, simply squeeze about a third of the whitening gel into the plate, focusing on the outer front edge (basically where the plate meets your front teeth). Gently place the plate in and that’s it! I was expecting the taste of the gel to be horrible however it was perfectly fine and I took the opportunity to catch up on some reading whilst whitening. Afterwards, take the plate out, brush your teeth with toothpaste and dry the mouth. The desensitizing gel then needs to be applied. The process is the same as the whitening gel, except this time you only keep it on for around 15-20 minutes. Afterwards, spit the remaining gel out (do not brush your teeth or rinse your mouth) and you’re done! 

My thoughts
I am blown away with the results of using Smile Brilliant. My teeth were noticeably whiter after only a few days and I am slightly embarrassed of how yellow my teeth were prior to whitening! I saw results after only a few applications, however I wanted to complete the entire recommended 14 days of whitening for the purpose of this review. I did experience some sensitivity in the beginning, which led me to only whiten every second day until it subsided so it took me a little longer to complete. 
Before and after -  what a difference! 

What I love the most about Smile Brilliant is that you can whiten in the comfort of your own home. I am a DIY kind of gal and prefer to do treatments on my own, so this was a huge plus for me. You also have the ease of whitening whenever you have time; I chose to whiten every night before I went to bed which worked well for me and my schedule. 
As for the process of using Smile Brilliant, it was extremely simple to use. The package includes clear instructions on the entire process and customer service is there to answer any questions you may have. I also found it helpful to google other bloggers who’d used Smile Brilliant to pick up helpful hints.

Smile Brilliant include a large supply of whitening and desensitizing syringes which is perfect for top ups or when you feel your teeth are looking a bit yellow. I plan to whiten every week to keep my teeth nice and white.

My tips

  • Smile Brilliant recommend not to drink any porous drinks after application and I completely agree. I made the mistake of drinking black tea after an application one night and my teeth turned a bit yellow. I recommend drinking through a straw and limiting these types of beverages whilst whitening.
  • If you experience sensitivity whilst whitening, try whitening every second day for a shorter time.

If you are looking for an affordable, DIY method of whitening your teeth I highly recommend checking out Smile Brilliant! I found the process quick, painless and best of all, it works! If you’d like to win a complete home teeth whitening kit you’re in luck because Smile Brilliant is hosting a giveway to one lucky reader! To win** your very own Smile Brilliant whitening package, please click here and enter your details! I also have a 15% coupon code- enter abeautywanderer15 at checkout if you'd like to try out Smile Brilliant for yourself! 

xo Roxane
*Thank you to Smile Brilliant for collaborating with A Beauty Wanderer. Products were kindly gifted for consideration, however this does not impact on my review or thoughts and all opinions remain 100% my own.

**Giveway details: The giveaway is for a $149 Smile Brilliant credit. It is open to USA, UK, Australia and Canadian residents only. 

Sunday, 29 April 2018

BEAUTY EDIT: My Colourpop Collection

Colourpop Cosmetics is a cruelty free makeup range that deliver high quality, on trend products at an affordable price. A friend recently gifted me with some products so I was super excited to test out their products and see if they lived up to the hype. 
I was given two eyeshadow palettes and two individual eye shadows and today I’ll be sharing my thoughts with you. 

The Golden State of Mind shadow palette contains 15 ultra shimmery eyeshadows in pinks, silvers, yellows, oranges and neutrals. All shades are super soft and have a good colour payoff. This is a great palette for an everyday dewy look and allows you to create a number of looks due to the great selection of colours. I like to use this palette to highlight my inner corners and I even use it to highlight the face. The colours are soft and would suit a variety of skin tones, and the shades can also be layered for a unique finish. 

The You Had Me At Hello shadow palette contains 12 eyeshadows in a mix of both matte and metallic shades. The colours lean towards pinks, purples and browns and all shades are buttery soft and easy to blend. What I like most about this palette is the endless possibilities it provides; it can be used for a subtle daytime look or built up to a dramatic nighttime look. I also love the mix of matte and shimmer shades; I lean towards matte shades more as they always look modern and fresh. This is my favourite palette out of the two as it’s just so versatile. 

The High Tea Super Shock Eyeshadow is a pressed coral shade with intense shimmer. It can be used as both an eyeshadow and face highlighter. It comes in a pressed powder formula and compared to other Colourpop eyeshadows it is not as soft or finely milled. I do find that I need to press my brush quite hard into the compact to get a decent colour payoff. It is well worth the effort though as it looks gorgeous once applied to the skin. I have used this as both an eyeshadow and highlighter and I actually prefer it as a face highlighter. It gives the perfect glistening glow to the skin and adds a nice pop of colour. 

Cornelius is a pressed eyeshadow from their matte collection and is a warm soft chocolate shade. The formula is buttery soft and very pigmented and applies to the skin effortlessly. I normally use this to accentuate the crease and to add depth to my eyes. This is probably my favourite shade out of my collection and the one I reach for the most. It is perfect for a subtle eye look or to add some warmth to a smoky eye. I’d recommend this shade as a staple to any makeup collection. 

I’m extremely impressed with these Colourpop Cosmetics and can definitely see the hype surrounding their products. I find their eyeshadows to be just as good as some high end products I’ve tried yet are much more affordable. 
Have you tried anything from Colourpop Cosmetics? What were your thoughts? 
xo Roxane

Friday, 20 April 2018

BEAUTY EDIT: Meccaland 2018!

Hi beauties! As you may know, Mecca hosted their first ever Meccaland event over the weekend in Melbourne and I was lucky enough to attend. The event ran over two days and each day was broken down into 3 hour long sessions, which provided ample time to attend each booth, take some fun selfies and enjoy all of the entertainment on offer. Today’s post will show you what Meccaland was all about, what I got up to and of course show you what I purchased on the night! 

Meccaland is the first ever beauty event hosted by Mecca and showcased some of their most popular brands, new product releases, plenty of freebies and complimentary makeovers. Each brand provided a ‘selfie’ style booth in their own unique style, which allowed guests to pose for some pretty great photos! There were also a whole range of new product releases exclusive to Meccaland that haven’t yet been released in Mecca. 

Ready for Meccaland!
So let’s get into it! 

Upon walking in, we were greeted by a lit up Meccaland sign and plenty of smiling faces from the lovely Mecca staff. Once we had our wristbands on and gift bags in tow, we made our way inside. I won’t lie; it was completely overwhelming at first and we had no idea where to look or start as there was so much going on! Once we found our feet and spoke to some friendly Mecca girls we started to really get into it.

We were kept entertained with dancers, drag queens and guest speakers throughout the night. I really enjoyed watching the makeovers on stage and even picked up some tricks.

The brands: 

First up was a fun pose at the Bare Minerals stand. My friend Daniella and I donned robes and eye masks and climbed onto the huge pink sofa bed. 

Too Faced. Posing with the sparkly unicorn made all of my childhood dreams come true. We also made a short dance video which was a lot of fun! I purchased the first item of the night from Too Faced from their new Unicorn collection (which is seriously amazing by the way!). 

GHD. There were so many makeovers on offer so we decided to treat ourselves to a 5 minute hair style by GHD next. My straight hair was transformed into loose, beachy waves which was perfect for all of the photo opportunities that lay ahead.

Nars. The newest palettes were on display and I contemplated buying the NARScissist Wanted Eyeshadow Palette, however common sense won over so I walked away empty-handed. Nars had a cool ‘mirror room’ where you could pose and take photos in. It took us a while to gather our bearings as there were so many mirrors. 
Posing in the NARS mirror room.
Mecca Max. The funniest place of the night, only because Daniella got completely submerged in the seemingly endless ball pit. We were also treated to a free lip mask and it was a nice way to relax for a few minutes and take it all in. 

Hourglass Cosmetics. Hourglass Cosmetics are truly gorgeous and it was really exciting to see all of their new releases. I also bought my second (and last) item from here. It was a spontaneous purchase however I am so happy with it!

Stila had the most Instagrammable photo op of the night in my opinion! It was a giant snow globe with confetti blowing around; so pretty! Although I was finding glitter in my clothes for days afterwards...
Stila’s stand was in the ‘Red Room’, a dark section of the warehouse that felt very trippy and acid-like. The Red Room had brands such as Ciate, Glam Glow, Drunk Elephant and of course Stila. 
There was also a fortune teller (which we sadly just missed out on), dancing drag queens and a cool donut dispenser. 
Yummy donuts. 
Now to the best part; the haul! 
Mecca were very generous and each guest was given a cute Meccaland tote, plenty of free samples and gift with purchases throughout the night and to top it off, a Mecca loop beauty box to take home. 

What I bought:

I was very restrained and only bought two items for myself. One is the Too Faced Mystical Effects Lipstick in the shade Fairy Tears. It shows up as a pale yellow shade in the tube however transforms into a gorgeous iridescent pink once applied to the lips. I also received a cute rainbow makeup case with two minis; the Better Than Sex mascara and the Shadow Insurance primer as a gift with purchase. The second item is the Hourglass Flash Highlighting Stick in Rose Gold Flash which is a cream highlighting stick and gives the skin the perfect amount of glow; I am obsessed! 


So let’s get to the freebies! Most of the brands gave away free samples throughout the night, as well as gift with purchase so it was really worth visiting each stand. I received samples from Clinique, Kate Somerville, Mecca Max, Drunk Elephant, Hourglass Cosmetics, Glam Glow and Urban Decay and Origins. We also scored some free fairy floss (or cotton candy for my USA readers), free drinks and a cute pink wristband. 

The Mecca Beauty Loop box: 

Mecca surprised everyone with a take-home beauty loop box which was a really generous way to top the night off! It was chock full of amazing samples, a full sized Mecca Max product and even a cookie! 

Included were products from Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil, Ciate London Wonderwand mascara, Origins Out of Trouble mask, Hourglass Vanish Flash Highlighting Stick in Champagne Flash, Too Faced Hangover Face Primer, Glamglow DreamDuo face mask, Kate Somerville Wrinkle Warrior, Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion and a Mecca Max A Lipster Liquid Lipstick in Killer Instinct (full size). 

So that wraps up Meccaland 2018! Mecca truly threw the most spectacular event and I had such an amazing time! It was the best way to bring together makeup lovers and special mention to the wonderful Mecca workers who were so friendly and helpful on the night; everyone was so warm and welcoming which always makes a huge difference! 

Did you attend Meccaland? Did you love it as much as I did?

xo Roxane. 


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