Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Blinc Mascara Review

 The Best Packaging!

On my mission to bring people lovely cruelty free cosmetics, I am grateful to have the opportunity to show you Blinc Mascara*. This particular mascara was greeted with an 'oooooh'
 because the mascara comes in a tin cylinder with a screw top. I thought that was pretty neat.

First lets talk about the Blinc Lash Primer. This lash primer was created to condition, strengthen and voluminous. I put one coat of this on and let it dry for about five minutes. The formula feels thicker than the Mascara to wear and it was a tad uneasy to apply (however I have never worn a lash primer in my life.) As I applied this I noticed that my lashes were looking longer and fuller, I could only imagine what they would look like with a coat of Mascara on them. The liquid is white and remains that colour even when dried, so I suppose if I wanted to use this as a treatment it would have to be at bedtime. I have noticed a dramatic difference that this primer makes as a base coat because my lashes were longer and very defined. I must say that I am intrigued with this primer, I have never used one but I can see that it works. I will be experimenting with this for a while

This Mascara is worth getting excited for! OK so a couple of things first, with the primer on my eyelashes I felt that I had to work quickly or my eyelashes would clump. Not so. I feel this Mascara is more suited for lengthening and I don't usually reach for lengthening ones. Blinc Mascara is invented to form water resistant 'tubes' around your lashes, without smudging, running or flacking even when your crying or rubbing your eyes. Well, of course I had to try it out. I grabbed me a wet tissue and somewhat gave my eyes a decent rub. Guess what? No smudging. I was pleased and shocked and intrigued all at the same time, I went one step further and started to take it off with a tissue wet with water. I gently put my fingers at the base of my lashes and pulled to the tip, and the Mascara came off cleanly and didn't leave nasty clumps on my eyelids. I really am pleased as punch with this Mascara, it was a clean removal and because I was wearing the Lash Primer as well I honestly feel like my eyelashes are conditioned. What a pleasant surprise this mascara is!

The Primer brush is a lot thicker than the Mascara brush, I'm guessing because the formula is a lot thicker and precision isn't very important when applying Primer. The twisted Mascara brush is a lot thinner so this allows those little lashes in the corner to be reached.

The white primer ( my self photography skills have a lot to be desired)

The Mascara (in Black) with the Primer underneath

This product is cruelty free and you can learn more about Blink Cosmetics HERE.

Have Fun!

Renee x

*This product was sent to me for consideration, my opinions on Blinc Mascara and Primer is 100% genuine and honest.

Monday, 28 April 2014

Date and Banana Smoothie

Sweet and Refreshing

Hi! Today I have a recipe for you that I made up on the spot this afternoon. It's so delicious that I have to share it with you. I decided to dabble with a few new flavours with my daily smoothie. I wanted something sweet but I didn't want to stick with my usual Banana, Berries and Spirulina shake.

So the ingredients are:

1 large Banana
4 Dates, chopped
1 cup of milk ( I use Soy Milk)
4 Tablespoons of natural Yoghurt
1/2 Teaspoon of Cinnamon

Whizz it all up and there you go! A yummy and sweet smoothie. It is definitely worth a go.
If you try it let me know how you like it.

Have Fun!

Renee x

Sunday, 27 April 2014

5 Easy Tips To Going Cruelty Free

Tips to help you on your way!

Recently I have decided enough is enough, I'm going cruelty free with my cosmetics and products. I have thought about it before and I have also seen the ads with pictures of unhappy bunnies with red ears because someone has slathered nasty chemicals on them in the name of beauty, but to actually go through with going cruelty free seemed too daunting.
I'm not some kind of hippy who doesn't like showers, hugs trees in their spare time and goes up to people in the meat isle in the supermarket with a picture of a cow and says ' could you kill this for your dinner?' I did marry one of those people though, but that story is for another day (and yes he did used to walk around the supermarkets with a picture of a cow in his hand, he is very special to me.) But I think that any regular Joe would agree that in this day and age testing on animals is simply not necessary.
I have put together a simple 5 step list to help you swap your cosmetics to cruelty free ones and It's not as hard as you think

Image source from Causes.com

  1. Research- I think it's really important before you make the change for good is to educate yourself on the actual test that are done on these helpless animals. It's not pretty and if you can only stomach looking at a picture of a sad bunny that is fine. But I urge you to do some reading up on it. Before you go shopping for cruelty free products it can be extremely helpful to know brands that are cruelty free! Am I right? Or you could be wandering the cosmetic aisle all confused. Know your Brands! Do some research so you can link which company tests on animals or if they are owned by a company that test on animals. Because either way the money is going toward hurting animals.                                                                                                                                           
  2. Be Organised- So your toothpaste is nearly run out. Instead of going straight to the supermarket and replacing it with the same brand, go back to Step One and check if it is cruelty free. If not you still have time to order a cruelty free alternative online or shop around for one. This goes with any product foundations, hair dye, shaving cream all of these have cruelty free alternatives. Make a list of what you will need to replace soon and go online or to your local health food shop and make some informed decisions.   
  3. Read Your Labels- The easiest way to tell if a product is safe is if it says 'vegan or it has the PETA bunny. There are two other independent bunny signs to look for too. If there is none of these symbols and you haven't completed Step One, move on.       
  4. Dont Feel Guilty- One of the main reasons why it took me so long to change to cruelty free products was because I felt really guilty that animals had already suffered and I had already bought into it. You can't change the past but you can always change the future for some poor animal out there and make a stand! You may not think that swapping one thing for another is going to make a difference because there are millions of other girls out there who bought a product that was tested on an animal down the line, but remember, one drop makes a ripple effect.                                                                
  5. One Step At A Time- If you feel as though you have to make the change slowly that's fine. Don't worry about throwing away all your make up and starting again, there is no point in that. Also no one expects you to know every cruelty free brand out there, that is what cruelty free blogs are for. Haha. But start making the change. This can be very exciting because you will have the opportunity to play with some new cosmetics and body care items that you may not have even heard about or tried. And these products are (in my experience) really good and lovingly made instead of some stuff that gets spewed out onto the supermarket shelves just to keep up with the latest five minute trends.

I hope these tips help you on your journey to becoming a mindful consumer and a bunny bestie!

Have Fun!

Renee x

New Look!

My Blogs Makeover

I'm so excited to apply the new banner on my blog tonight. My wonderful brother who is a graphic designer spend some time with me and we went through a few ideas on an appropriate lifestyle and beauty banner for my blog. I cannot thank him enough. I feel like a banner and design says a lot about a blog. My blog focuses mainly on cruelty free cosmetics and body products, hence why the girl is looking lovingly at the cute little bunny, and also a clean and free lifestyle. I think pretty flowers and fields and fruit when I imagine a clean lifestyle. 

This is a picture of my old banner and even though I loved it and my husband helped me create it I didn't feel like it was quiet complete.
So a huge shout out to my bro who helped create this new look on my bloggidy.

Have Fun!

Renee x

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Sanctum Baby Moisturiser

A Gentle and Cooling Lotion

Today we decided to take the baby for a walk into the bush. We usually plonk her down on the dirt and let her taste the leaves like a little Koala and watch her crawl around a bit. However she wasn't wearing her usual long pants and she came home with a few light grazes on her knees. Oops my mistake. Bub didn't seem to notice but I sure did. As I looked at the red knees I though to myself that I should really put a soothing cream on them. Out comes the Baby Sanctum Moisturiser. I hadn't actually used this product before but it's the only baby moisturiser I have in my cabinet at the moment. 

With a squirmy bub on the bed as I tried to dress her after a bath, I was a tad overzealous with applying this lotion. A little goes a long way and I found my hands covered in excess. It's a bit hard to tell if bub enjoyed this moisturiser because she was crawling all over the bed and having a good whine about getting dressed and quiet frankly my mission was to get her clothes on and have my dinner. So, now that she is in bed I have decided to apply some on myself and tell you what I think. 

This is a very light lotion so it absorbs into the skin very quickly. I was also very happy to feel the cooling effect it has on skin, so if Bub has red and irritated skin this will work wonders! I tend to try out a product before going into depth with the ingredients list, so I was curious to see what made this lotion so cooling. Aloe Vera leaf juice is the first ingredient listed here so I can already tell why it feels so nice. We have an Aloe Vera plant in a pot under our patio and we use it all the time if we get burned because it is very healing and cooling for hot and irritated skin.  This product has a very mild scent of Lavender so its a pleasure to use and very calming right before bedtime. It also contains Chamomile Flower Extract, Apricot Kernel Oil and Jojoba Oil so its great for soothing, hydrating and healing bubs sensitive skin.
I recommend this lotion just for the wonderful cooling properties, especially if baby is prone to eczema this lotion could be a welcome relief.
This is not tested on animals, vegan and 95% organic.

Have you used any Sanctum products?

Have Fun!

Renee x

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Cakes for babies

Baking Cakes

So the Easter holidays are officially over, but we have a mountain of chocolate on the pantry still waiting to be eaten. I'm one of those people that get really excited about holidays. Christmas, Easter and birthdays always are a highlight on my calender. It's bubs first Easter this year, so we did our usual church on Good Friday and exchanges a bit of chocolate on Easter Sunday and to my surprise I had a few people saying what shall I get the baby? Surely at 10 months old she is too young for chocolate?
I certainly felt uncomfortable giving my bub chocolate so I decided to bake her a healthier alternative.

These little cakes are made from a few ingredients that I am fine with giving her and it doesn't contain any gluten.

1 Apple, stewed
2 Cups of Almond meal
2 eggs
1 Teaspoon Baking powder
a pinch on Cinnamon
a pinch of mixed spice
a teaspoon of honey (optional)

Method:  preheat oven to 180°C.
  1. Peel and cut apple in small pieces.
  2. Place apple in a pan and add water until apple is just covered, put on medium heat until apple is soft
  3. when cooled blend the apple using a blender or hand whiz.
  4. transfer apple to a bowl, add Almond meal and mix with a spoon
  5. add eggs, baking soda and cinnamon and mixed spice and mix it all together.
  6. add honey if you desire.
  7. get a tablespoon of mixture and place it on lined oven tray.
Bake these for 10-12 minutes or until the top becomes golden. I had to give these to bub crumbled up because they can get stuck in her mouth.These would be great with a spoonful of yoghurt on the side!
These can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days and the batter can be frozen.

Have Fun!

Renee x

Thursday, 17 April 2014

The colours of Autumn

Red, Orange and Yellow

I love watching the seasons change. It always brings me a smile when I see the leaves turning and the trees going bare. Yesterday as I was walking around the yard I decided to take a few pictures of the garden and really look at the beautiful colours nature shows us at this special time of year.

Autumn is one of my favourite seasons and I hope you can see why. What's your favourite season and why?

Have Fun!

Renee x

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Gotta Love It!

U Skin Solutions

This week has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride. Bub is has 3 teeth coming through all at once so we are living on about five hours sleep at night, if we are lucky we may get a quick nap in the afternoon. So I have had days of feeling utterly dysfunctional, eyes bleary, sunk into the back of my head and my brain feels fuzzy all over. I have also had better days, like today, I can type a full sentence without falling asleep. Yahoo! - not the search engine.

Consequently my skin has taken a bit of a battering. It seems too have formed its own brain and is saying to itself, "I'm gonna make some redness on the cheeks, some blemishes on the chin and a bit of extra oil here and there." I suppose it doesn't help that to keep my energy levels high enough to see through the day I am snacking on ANYTHING sugary. BIG no no! Even my beloved Angels on Bare Skin by Lush cant seem to keep up with my problem skin and I am finding it too oily at the moment.
 When U Skin Solutions* arrived at my door I wondered if these skincare products could solve my skin woes. Now, I am going to be a very honest and forthright reviewer because I am tired and when I am tired the true Choleric side of me emerges in full force. However I am glad to say that I really really like this line, and I can't seem to find a fault with it.

U Skin Solutions has such elegant packaging.

The Nourishing Cleansing Milk is just so so light. I am always a bit weary of cleansing milks and lotions, if my skin is already greasy I find they grease it up even more. But this cleanser is a stressed skins best friend. I really feel like it has relaxing properties and even thought there is a bit of oil in this formula such as Avocado, Macadamia and Jojoba oils, I truly feel they are purely moisturising and nothing else. No excess grease or film is left on my skin and It leaves my face feeling really soft and supple. I have also noticed after a week of using this cleanser that the redness around my nose and cheeks has really improved and isn't inflamed anymore.

I'm a bit disappointed that the label on the Bamboo and Kakadu Plum Refining Face Polish says to use this only twice a week because I COULD USE THIS EVERYDAY. Five stars just for the feisty, zesty smell of this baby! I remember during the week I was having a really bad day with bub and I hopped in the shower to use this and WOW! I felt ten times better with the scent of Lavender oil, Lemon Myrtel oil and Tea tree oil wafting up my nose. This scrub smells happy and is really gentle without being clumpy or harsh. After using this scrub my skin felt really soft and very clean and the lotion is really easy to wash off and there are no tiny little fragments left on the skin. Unfortunately I have to wait another two days to use this again. I am counting down the hours.

Ahh Tub moisturisers, I almost immediately think of really heavy night creams when I see a moisturiser in a tub. I am prejudice... a little. But U Skin Solutions have done it again. On first inspection the Moisturising Day Cream looked a bit thick and rich for my problem skin but I gave it a go anyway. Oh how wrong I was. When I blended this moisturiser into my skin I immediately noticed how light and creamy it was. It didn't take any time to soak into my skin and now my skin seems to have bounced back from it's days of looking stressed. I don't get oily in the T-zone at the end of the day either. No skincare line has ever done that for me. 

This is such an amazing, cruelty free skincare line and I would recommend it to everyone, just to have a go. After finding U Skin Solutions I have become very passionate about it. It is affordable for the quality and if you look at the website HERE there are some great starter packs to try out. I love love it!

Have Fun!

Renee x

This product was sent to me for consideration, however my opinions are 100% genuine and honest.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

40's inspired fashion

Like the look of vintage fashion at all?

After watching a brilliant series on DVD called Bomb Girls I have become inspired by the 1940"s fashion.

I found a great shop online called Mod Cloth and it's exactly my taste! I was so happy to find it and I thought I would put together a little vintage inspired wishlist.

These are all casual outfits that I love. What I love most about these dresses is that they don't reveal too much skin but still emphasise the lovely figure of a woman. The waists are nipped in with either a belt or just the cut and the shoulders are tastefully covered. This green 3/4 length sleeve top is so beautiful with a gorgeous floral print. I would either team the top with jeans or a plain skirt and flats.

I don't usually wear play suits but this is just gorgeous. A great outfit for a Summer evening.

 Lets not forget Party Dresses. These two dresses couldn't be more different. One is white with blue flowers and a bubble skirt, I think this is perfect if you want to get noticed! The second dress is dusty pink with a flowy skirt and a dreamy bow wrapped around the waist, it reminds me a bit of a ballerina.

How could you walk past a pretty pair of shoes? They top of an outfit and also are a factor to think about if you dress for comfort (like me). I can't get over how cute the shoes are with the birds! tweet tweet. And I like me a nice vintage looking pendant.

I hope you liked this little with list of vintage inspired clothes? What was your favourite?

Have Fun!

Renee x

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Mummy's Pamper Yourself, You Deserve It!

Facial Time.

Hello! The last couple of days has been a lot of hard work with a baby that seems to have forgotten how to nap. I have been tired and a bit stressed, and my skin has shown it!
Last night I decided to give myself a pamper facial at home, just to cleanse my skin and help clear it up a bit.

First things first, I put on a nice cup of hot chocolate and plonked myself in front of my favourite night-time T.V show, The Block. Oh yeah, feeling relaxed already. I had already prepared what I needed and it was sitting next to me.

I cleansed my face with my usual cleanser Angels on Bare Skin by Lush. This cleanser is also a little bit of an exfoliator because of the crushed Almond shells so I felt I didn't need to exfoliate separately.

The Angels on Bare Skin is like a paste that you have to mix with water, but it works so well. This is my all time favourite cleanser and I think that it suits my skin really well.

I then used the last of my Puretopia Refresh & Balance Facial Mist and Toner just to get rid of any excess cleanser that may be hanging around. I tend to mix up my toners a lot but I really like this one because it is very light and my skin doesn't react to it at all. I also find that using a toner is a great way to prep skin for a mask.

Whenever I am doing an at-home facial I always pop a mask on. Its not part of my everyday skincare routine because I simply don't have time, but when I do try to really treat my skin a mask is essential. I used the Sanctum Hydrating Gel Mask*. Lately I have been getting a lot of oil build up around my T- Zone which has caused that area to be red and feel a tad greasy. After lounging around with this sensation on my face for 10 minutes I washed it off and the first thing I notice was how soft my skin felt. I think my skin felt so soft because the grease build-up had completely vanished. I hadn't noticed how dirty my skin actually was until this mask came off!
  I was completely expecting my skin to feel very tight after washing this off because even though this is said to be hydrating it is a gel and I don't have the best track record with gels. But I am not afraid to use this again because my skin felt plump, moisturised and so so clean! Honestly girls, try this mask if you have sensitive and dry skin but chucks a big greasy tantrum around your T-Zone. It will do wonders!

The Sanctum Mask dries clear.

By this time The Block had finished and I was enjoying the continuing story of PubertyBlues. Love love that series, I read the book as a teenager and I whizzed through it. Book recommendation right there. OK onto the facial again.

I then moisturised with a face oil I found in my local health food shop, this is called Affinity Exquisite All Natural Face Oil. I really enjoy the smell of this oil It consists of a mixture of things like Sandalwood, Ylang Ylang, Avocado and Lavender as well as a whole bunch of other good stuff for the skin. I find that I can only use this once a day like in the morning then I'll swap it for my night time moisturiser the Jurlique Skin Serum otherwise my skin gets a bit greasy. 

I then finished off with 3 drops of the Dr Hauschka Daily Revitalising Eye Cream around my eyes and patted on a bit of the Dr Hauschka Lip Balm on my lips. 

By this time I had gotten up to feed bub again and was now very ready to settle down for the night with my fresh and squeaky clean face. Bliss!

I would love to know what you girls do to treat yourself after a long day?

Have Fun!

Renee x

* This product was sent to me for consideration, however my opinions are 100% genuine and honest
All of these products are animal friendly.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

New Scent by Balenciaga

Rosabotanica by Balenciaga

The other day I got a sample of the Rosabotanica By Balenciaga and I have been testing it ever since.
Not really sure what to say about this scent, except I'm not a fan.
To me this is kind of a cross between a soapy perfume and one of those candy-like aresol sprays that I used to wear as a tween. The very first initial spray is like a deep soapy smell with a touch of spice. It then very quickly changes to the middle note which sees the spice melt away to a more floral tone but with stronger fruity smell. The base note kind of got lost on my skin and after about an hour of wearing this perfume I couldn't smell anything. This is a very bold fragrance and not for the faint hearted. This perfume will be perfect for adventurous women that are not afraid to stand out in the crowd. Unfortunatly I'm not one of them, I prefer my scents a bit sweeter and softer. You win some, you lose some.

Top note: Hyacinth, fig leaf, petitgrain
Middle note: Rose, pink pepper, cardamom, grapefruit
Base note: White amber, vetiver, cedar, patchouli,  woodsy notes.

Am I wrong? What is your experience with the Rosabotanica?

Have Fun!

Renee x

This was sent to me for considertion, however my opinions are 100% genuine and honest.

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Michel Mercier Giveaway Closed


Congratulations Hannah for winning the Michel Mercier Hairbrush Giveaway. I hope you love it!

That Pretty Violet Box

A Review for March 2014

So my Violet Box arrived on the last day of March. So it still counts as a March box, ha! I'm not too sure if this month has a theme they usually do but I cant seem to pick it, that doesn't mean that there isn't some amazing things in the box though. 

So these Love those Lashes New Silk Strip Lashes are an item that I'm happy to receive. I don't usually wear lashes, I don't have time and it's not really my style, but I have a couple of parties to go to very soon and I really want to try these out. I'm a bit nervous because I have never applied fake lashes in my life. But the good news is that this particular brand can be reused up to 15 times so it doesn't matter if I stuff it up the first 14 times.I will also be cutting these to shape because I would not want them poking my eyes every time I blink! ( Silk Strip Lashes is made from man made synthetics and are animal cruelty free.)

Sinful Colours is one of those inexpensive go-to nail polish racks when there is a last minute manicure in order. I don't generally think they are the best quality nail varnish out there but they do have a whole bunch of very good colours. I received the Gogo Girl 852 which is a really bright red. This is a pretty colour that I think is perfect for Winter because I tend to head for reds and berries on my nails. Its always nice to wear something bright and fun when there are grey clouds in the sky.

The Starlooks Gem Pencil is so pretty. Violet Box was giving away the Topaz or Amethyst, I am so glad I received the Amethyst because I love purple. It is a beautiful bright Lavender colour with tiny bits of glitter in it. I just love the colour and the feel of this pencil, it is very easy to apply and it can be blended so that the colour turns into just a light shimmer over the eyelid, Its so versatile. ( Starlooks is an animal cruelty free company)

I am very interested in trying this Day & Night Fortifying Serum from Acorelle. I haven't actually heard a lot about Acorelle until I was perusing on Violet Boxes website to see what brands they stocked. 98% of these ingredients are of natural origin and 27% of the total ingredients are from organic farming. This anti-oxidant serum comes in a creamy formulation but is easily spreadable, it dried very quickly and left only a slight tackiness. (Acorelle is animal cruelty free )

I have heard about Mirenesse on many Youtube channels and also previous subscription box reviews, I was curious to see what all the fuss was about. Excitement set in when I received the Mirenesse Velvet lip Lift Moisture Shine Gloss. This is a plumping , self-renewing and long term anti-ageing lip treatment. I really like the nude colour of this because it looks very natural, a lot of the time I find 'nude' colours are still way too dark for me but this gloss is just right. I expected to feel a lot of tingling on my lips as the plumping effect took place but I felt nothing and I didn't really see  major plumped pout when I had this on either. But that's OK because I'm in love with the colour. Two thumbs up from me. (Mirenesse is a animal cruelty free company)

We also received a $25 Beauty Voucher from Mirenesse and a free Instant Lash Transplant voucher.

So that's everything in my box for this month. I was totally impressed with the amount of full sized products and also they are very good quality. Violet Box also has an online store so you can buy some of your favourite things that have come in the boxes full size, over and over again. 

Did you get anything different in your Violet Box?

Have Fun!

Renee x

Violet Box was sent to me for consideration, however my opinions are 100% genuine and honest.