Monday, 30 August 2010

Skin care update

My skin has been looking awful lately, so I went to the local drugstore and had a very nice lady help me a lot. (Well, actually I went there to get some stuff a friend wanted and to stock up for the last time, as tomorrow is my last day in Japan - for a while. Definitely coming back!)

I'm one of those people who get break-outs on their cheeks and chin area, which the nice lady said is stress and hormones. She measured my skin's hydration level again and it was very low this time. I probably over-cleaned my skin when the first pimple showed up some weeks ago, and didn't moisturize properly because the last check showed I was fine without using moisturizer. Uh, well.
Actually, this describes my skin's state pretty well, and also sums up what the lady at the counter said.

After like half an hour of discussing matters with the SA and fighting with myself, I bought the Sekkisei 25th Anniversary trial kit and a Kosé moisturizer that smells nearly the same as Sekkisei does, but is from the line Hyalocharge, a skin care line that contains hyalorunic acid, which is supposed to give skin back its moisture. I will try this all out and see how it works. I probably won't be able to purchase full size Sekkisei products as they're over my budget, but my skin should have calmed down once the trial is finished, and then I can hopefully go back to a normal German cleanser, toner etc., or use the whole Hyalocharge series (if I can either get it online or have a friend send it to me.)

Anyway, I hope this will be of some use to you: Overcleansing your skin is bad!

List of ingredients for Hyalocharge
Quite a lot of alcohol, pretty much like Sekkisei. So far, alcohol wasn't a problem for me, but we'll see. Cetearyl Alcohol may clog pores, though, according to this list.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Would you do your make-up in public or on the go?

In Japan, I often seen girls or women doing their make-up on the train. It's kind of interesting because I like to see what kind of techniques other people use.
When I went back from an overnight trip, my friends and me were pretty bored on the long train ride, and I had the crazy, er, glorious idea to re-apply my make-up on the train. I've never done that before and probably will never do it again, but it was fun.

For some reason, it is considered bad manners to apply make-up on the train, so the Tokyo Metro launched this some time ago:



In many public restrooms here, there are also extra mirrors so you won't block the sinks while doing your hair or make-up. Even at my university! O.o
Some people also apply their make-up in the car, I've heard. Seems a bit dangerous to me... ^^;

Do you apply your make-up at outside of yor home or bathrooms?

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Face of the day - Lavshuca


I used Lavshuca's Eye Color Select palette in Br-1, blusher/highlighter duo in RD-2 and Liquid Rouge in RD-1. Also the loose powder Lucent on one side of my face - I powdered the other half with my usual Majolica Majorca powder to see if there's a difference. Time will tell.
My base was the Missha Signature BB Cream sample in #21 I reviewed in the post before this.
Also, I filled in my eyebrows with a no-name powder, put black gel-liner by Kate on my upper waterline and white My Color Pencil in white, also by Kate, on my lower waterline. And my beloved Majolica Majorca Lash Gorgeous Wing Neo, of course.

It looks like my cell phone camera has a tendency to tone down red in pictures. The liquid rouge looks redder in real life, my blush disappeared in the picture (I didn't apply that much to begin with, though - living in Japan doesn't mean imitating their way of applying blusher.)
Also, my hair started turning red. O.o I tolf you before that I got it dyed, and some of you might have wondered in the last pic why the colour didn't look much different than before. Answer: the colour didn't last. Which would be okay, since several people told me they liked my original colour better anyway, but turning red is not what I expected, as red really doesn't suit me, and paying 3.500 Yen on a bad dye job kind of makes me mad. I will stop by the salon next week, I guess, and ask them about it.

picture taken with flash
Here a picture of my closed left eye, taken with flash. Stupid glitter fall-out. ^^;
But I really like the palette as a whole, as it gives the eyes nice dimension without looking overdone.

Swatches


The colours look more vibrant in real life when swatched on the back of my hand, but applied on the eye, they look more like in the picture above. The third shade looks a bit coppery on my hand (as I said, my camera takes out red tones), but doesn't look strange on my eye.

Overall, very recommendable. :)

Missha Signature BB Cream

When I bought my blue eyeshadow I still haven't reviewed at the Missha counter in a Shinjuku department store, I got some free samples, one of them the Signature BB Cream in #21. Yes, the first time I got a bright colour that actually fits my face! Usually, both in Germany and in Japan, I get foundation samples that are waaaaaaaaaaaay too dark (and yellow) for me. Is there only one colour for samples or is there a purpose behind giving me the wrong colour? (I know there are some "make-up experts" that give you darker colours on purpose to make you look "more healthy". Um, sure.)

Anyway, I just tried the sample and from the first use, I almost like it better than the Perfect Cover one that I used until now! It's not as thick, so it spreads more easily, and it also looks a bit more natural. It lacks the strong fragrance, which might be a plus for people who don't like the other one's smell or react to fragrance.

I know you can't judge from samples, but I guess my next BB cream will be this.

It has SPF 25 PA++, which is less than Perfect Cover, but since I wear sunscreen underneath anyway, it shouldn't be a problem.
Both creams feel a bit sticky on my face when I touch it, but just by wearing, I don't experience any discomfort.

Do you have a favourite BB cream? Did you ever get colour-"matched" incorrectly?

Update:  Okay, my chin and the sides of my nose feel a bit itchy now. On the other hand, those are my problem areas at the moment as they are kind of dry and flaky, so maybe that's it.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Integrate Fall Collection etc.

When I headed to another drugstore than my usual one, I found the new eyeshadows from Integrate's fall collection that will be out for sale on the 21st on display! Same for Coffret d'Or's C Curve two limited palettes - the purple one looked rather lovely, the taupe/nude one a bit muddy.

Same for Integrate - I had wanted the green, but the colour barely showed when I swatched it on my arm. And my arm is white as snow! O.o The purple here looked lovely, too, the middle shade reminded me of the Aube eyeshadow I have. Four or five palettes were brownish, two were pink and one was grey. I can't pull of pink on my eyes (which is too bad, as they're heart-shaped, so pink would be perfect), I don't like grey and I already have a nude/brown/golden palette from Lavshuca. Still, as I really want one of these, I might go for a light brown.

This also means I need to find another green palette - maybe Majolica Majorca, as they have a deeper green.

Sorry I didn't do swatches - at first a sales assistant was always around me. Then, of course, when I wanted to ask a question, she disappeared. ^^;

Sunday, 15 August 2010

At a Japanese drugstore

Today was another double point day at my local drugstore, which I decided to use for a little (ha!) shopping spree. I also dragged a friend along so I would get the points for her stuff, too.

I got some more eye shadow palettes (the last ones, I swear, Mum! Okay, only one more, the Integrate heart-shaped ones aren't out yet.) finally the loose Lavshuca powder PJ has been raving about and also my very first lipstick! Yes, I never owned a real lipstick before, just gloss. There was an Avon lipstick I reviewed a tiny sample of a while ago and sometimes used it, but it's long gone by now. Maybe I should purchase a full size?

Anyway, expect more reviews soon! I am trying to slow down my review pace a bit, because
a) I am leaving Japan on September 1st, which means I can't buy Japanese cosmetics anymore unless I order them online, which is more expensive and also makes pre-purchase swatching and applying impossible and
b) as I am leaving soon, I figured I shouldn't hang out in front of the computer so much, but rather go out and see some places and friends.

So, about Japanese drugstore experiences.
I am used to a spectrum of simply ignorant to plain out rude shop assistants in Germany, so I am really surprised and also really thankful for the service in Japan. Until now, whenever I asked if I could get some help before choosing an eyeshadow, especially on the more expensive side, I was always asked to sit down somewhere and a nice lady applied the shadow or several shadows, depending on how easily I could decide what I want, for me. As I moved, I am now frequenting a different store of the same chain, and the make-up ladies there don't seem to have application down as much as the really nice lady in the store in Harajuku. That was a really amazing experience! I had bought a Primavista cream foundation there in December together with a friend who recommended it for me, and when I came back in June (!), the lady had remembered my name, my university and that the friend I had been there with was studying in Kyoto. Kind of scary, but wow in terms of costumer service! I guess part of it was because not many foreigners come there - I don't know why so many of them here stick to international brands (that's what it seems to me) when Japanese drugstores have all the gems to offer.
Anyway, pretty much all make-up ladies compliment my long lashes (Caucasians have longer lashes than Asians, at least the average says that - I still envy Asians for their eye shape, though), my white skin and my Japanese. (My Japanese is still far from perfect, although I got pretty good over the year I spent here, but Japanese people always seem to be astonished by white foreigners actually talking Japanese.

Today, when I was eyeing the Coffret d'Or  Color Mixing Eyes palette in Blue Green I had wanted for ages, my friend just went: "Hey, I like that, gotta try it on!" So we headed up to the make-up counter, where we sat down and a nice lady applied the shadows to my friends eye. It looked... not so good. The shade are blue, green and turquoise, really pretty, but my friend is blond and has light eyes, so really bold colours don't suit her. As the ladies in that store tend to make the line too thick, I applied the shadows on her other eye to see how it would look, but it wasn't much better. Too bad for my friend, but the purple one suited her well, so she ended up buying that one. As we were already sitting there and the palette, expensive little gem it is, sat there, I decided I would have to try it on now, too. Not trusting the shop assistant, who seemed a bit new into the business, to apply it properly, I put it on myself and, wow! It actually looked good! Aren't I lucky that shades I like usually also look good on me? I guess it's because I have darker hair than my friend, and also darker eyes, which both build a nice contrast to my white skin, so I look good in bold, vibrant shades. It's too much for classes, I'd say, although I could just apply one shade, but for going out or shopping, perfect. <3 I just had to buy it. ^^;

I still have the new Majolica Majorca eye palette (the one with the green shade the model wears on the promo pics) and two Lavshuca palettes to review for you, plus the lipstick I bought and the liquid rouge, both Lavshuca as well. Lavshuca, I will miss you when I'm back in Germany!

I also asked about night creams I could use, because I felt like the aircon was making my skin dry, but the nice lady checked my skin with a little machine (funky, isn't it?) and said both my hydration and my oil level were totally fine. She still gave me some samples of a Kanebo line, but I think for now I might just continue skipping night cream unless my face feels really tight after cleansing, as the breathing at night seems to be good for my skin. The few breakouts I was getting lately are probably hormones or sweat blocking my pores, and should go away soon, that is, the sweat-caused ones, at least.

If you ever get the chance to shop in Japan directly, go to a drugstore! Department stores are fine if you have the money, but they sell more international brands than Japanese, which is a bit sad because I think if you are in Japan, you should see all the cute and very high quality goods they sell in drugstores. (Plus the sales clerks seem less persistent - in department stores, I usually feel pressured.)

Enough for today!
Do you like to hang out/shop in drugstores? How are drugstores in your country?
And do you use night cream? Or do you let your skin breathe? 

Majolica Majorca Lash Gorgeous Wing Neo

To be honest, I was a bit anxious when I heard that Lash Gorgeous Wing would be replaced with LGW Neo.
As I have written before, LGW is my favourite mascara so far, because it is the first one that doesn't clump on me or looks overly dramatic. It just makes my lashes look natural, only better.

Here is a pic of my lashes without any mascara. (I just put a bit of black eyeliner on my upper waterline.)

no mascara
As you can see, they're pretty long, but the ends need some black colour. (My head looks really weird like this, like the shape of an alien's head?!)

An old pic of my eye with LGW (from an old Visée eyeshadow review):
wearing Lash Gorgeous Wing mascara
And now a new pic with me wearing LGW Neo (the pic belongs to an upcoming review of an eyeshadow):
wearing Lash Gorgeous Wing Neo
As you can see, there is - luckily! - not much of a difference. If Neo seems a bit blacker and fuller, it is probably because the mascara is new, whereas the old LGW has been running out on me already.

That means I can stock up on LGW Neo now!

Saturday, 14 August 2010

If you had the money to buy whatever skincare/make-up product(s) you want...

... what would you buy?

I think I would buy Sekkisei's Lotion and Cream, as the sample of the lotion I got really helps soothe my skin, and the cream could be the night time moisturizer I need. But Sekkisei's products are expensive... The sun lotion is still affordable, and a good sun lotion is worth the price, I'd say, but about 5.000 Yen for both the lotion and the cream, and buy new ones after 3 to 6 months (estimated)? Oh hell... >____<

How about you?

Friday, 13 August 2010

Finally! New hair pics (and MU of the day)

I promised you a picture of my new hairstyle last week, remember? Well, here you go!

Uwah, I look super tired in the light!
I had it cut and also got a treatment, but unfortunately, my hair still looks very frizzy, despite using all the treatment, heat protection and just skipping blow-drying at all. :(
Plus, I had it dyed in a really dark colour which looked nearly black on the first day, but now, it is nearly back to my old brownish hue, just looking a bit more reddish. Huh? I should have known that my hair is undyeable, but how this happened when the hair stylist really dyed it is incomprehensible to me.

I took a pic with my webcam this time, but the quality isn't much better than my cell phone. The contrast is too high - I'm not that white! And you can't really see my eye make-up, can you? I used Majolica Majorca's single white shadow all over the lid and then Kate's Gel Liner in black, on which I dabbed Anna Sui's single eyeshadow in a glitterish blue, a colour I will present to you later. I think it matches my shirt. :)

What do you think of my hair? Well, all I can do is wait until it growns out anyway...

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Wishlist!

Before I go back to Germany in September, there's some stuff I want to buy.

- Integrate Rainbow Grade Eyes, probably in Green 707 (aren't those adorable?)
- Anna Sui blue liquid eyeliner
- one or two Lavshuca palettes (definitely one in brown, probably BR-1 of either Colour Select or Light Mix Eyes)
- another eye shadow palette by Majolica Majorca, maybe a green one if the Integrate green palette doesn't turn out to be to my liking once I see it for real
- a lipstick (to have at least on Japanese brand lipstick xD), probably Lavshuca


Need to stock up on:
- AHA Wash Cleansing
- Majolica Majorca Lash Gorgeous Wing Mascara Neo
- Majolica Majcora Powder that fits into my MM powder case
- MM Jeweilling Eyes Pencil Eyeliner in Blue
- maybe another rouge/highlighter from Lavshuca since those are perfect for carrying around

I guess I can always have a friend send me my sun lotion and also the wash cleansing if I transfer money to them...

Out of the two Kate My Colour pencils I have, the white in one is nearly gone, and I want to replace it with another colour that will be used up a bit more evenly - also, the white never stayed on my lower waterline anyway.

Kate Lasting High Coverage Liquid Foundation SPF 20 PA++ in BR-C

Before I bought this foundation, I should have read this. Too bad I didn't.

I was thrilled to find a foundation bright enough for my super white skin - something nearly impossible in Japanese drugstores - well, in German drugstores, too.
The foundation is indeed light enough for my complexion. It's just...
When I first applied this, I saw ... nothing. And not nothing as in "OMG no more redness or pores or pimples!", but in "did I just halluzinate putting on foundation?" I didn't see a difference at all.

I usually apply my foundation with my fingers, but when I stayed overnight at a friend's house, her applying foundation with a sponge reminded me of that possibility. It does look a bit better when applied with a sponge, but I don't like the application process. Takes too much time and buying a new sponge for every day is not very eco.

As the review in the link says, maybe the other shade offer better coverage, as this is only the skin brightener, but then please, KATE, don't put High Coverage on the bottle. 

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Expect reviews for:

- Lavshuca Light Mix Eyes in BR-1
- Majolica Majorca Lash Gorgeous Wing Neo and Jewelling Eyes in GR791
- Missha single eyeshadow in blue
- Anna Sui liquid eyeliner in blue, new single eyeshadow in 102 (dark sparkly blue)
- Kate Lasting High Coverage Liquid Foundation

I will try to review all items in the next few weeks, but I'm in a kind of dilemma:
I know you want the reviews fast, but if I review everything I got now, I won't have much left once I'm back in Germany. So please, leave a comment and tell me which review is the most urgent for you, and I will do that one first and the other ones later. :)

Wishlist 2

Some items caught my eyes on blogs or in stores lately, and I would like to share them here with you. Maybe, you can help me make a decision on what to get. :)  I will still definitely try the more expensive palettes on my eyes before I buy them, just to be safe.

- Coffret D’Or Color Mixing Eyes in Lavender Purple Mix
- Coffret d'Or Color Mixing Eyes in 02 Blue Green Mix  - got it!
- Coffret d'Or Shine Accent Shine Accent Eyes 02 Pink Variaton
- Lavshuca Melting Eyes BR-1
- Majolica Majorca Jewelling Eyes palettes, maybe GD886   - not my colours, plus I already got a golden palette from Lavshuca today
- Maquillage Dual Glow Eyes BR275 - got it!

- Kate Lasting High Coverage Powder Foundation

PJ from A Touch of Blusher also really made me want Coffret d'Or 3D Lightning Eyes in Gold Variaton, but it seems to be discontinued and can't be found in drugstore or ebay. :(
Edit: Found it, but it looked boring on my friend who tried it on, so I settled for Maquillage as my nude/brown/golden eyeshadow.

Lipstick recommendation

Dear readers,

I know there aren't many of you yet, at least not according to my blog statistics, and I am sorry to bother you.

Does anyone have a lipstick they can recommend to me? Preferably a Japanese brand, and also kind of affortable? I was thinking Lavshuca, because they look really pretty and wearable.
Or if you don't have a recommendation, at least a "don't buy this!" comment would be helpful.

What I want in a lipstick:
- sheer finish, not matte. Also not too glittery.
- a tone that brightens up my complexion. I have very fair skin with neutral to cool undertones, I'd say, so maybe some slightly blueish red or a light berry colour would be nice?
- should look good with every day make-up. I'm not for dramatic lip looks all that much.
- no real nudes or very light colours. I have naturally rosy lips, and I look really sick with them toned down or in a frosty pale pink etc.

If someone could help me, I'd appreciate that a lot! Preferably before I leave Japan in three weeks.
If I can do you a favour in return, I'd be happy to! Like e.g. check out some eye shadow in the drug store and make a swatch so you know whether you want to buy it or not even if you're not in Japan. (I can do that for all of you, of course, until I leave, whether you can actually help me or not. ^^)

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Majolica Majorca Artistic Nails in BL501



Yes, I'm on a blue trip. It's summer, so my love for this ocean and sky shade gets even bigger as I yearn for some refreshment...

Anyway, I bought Majolica Majorca's new nail polish in BL501, a dark blue with minimal glitter. It looks darker in the bottle than on the nails.
It also applies very unevenly, unfortunately. The colour is so pretty and looks so good on my white skin (yes, I never tan, not even in summer, and I also don't plan to), but  it's really runny and leaves streaks as well as colour beyond the actual nails.

I applied it on both feet and hands, but I think I will keep it to my feet from now on, where the streaks aren't so visible. Too bad. :(

Update: My feet still look perfect, but my nails chipped on the first day!
I tried the colour as a tip colour for my usual blue/blue design, with the Maquillage glitter blue on top of it now:

Monday, 9 August 2010

Coffret D'Or Beauty C Curve Eyes in 03 Monotone Blue


I went on a shopping trip last week and bought several new items, including Coffret d'Or's new "Beauty C Curve Eyes" eyeshadow palette in 03 Monotone Blue.
The reason why I decided to get it was because when I was at the hair salon, I read a magazine where they used this palette and a blue Anna Sui liner, which looked really nice and summery. I don't have the liner yet, but I will post pics of the complete eye look when I have it.

As almost all Japanese eyeshadows, the colours are on the sheerer side, and they have lots of shimmer. I prefer this look to bold and matte colours, especially when it comes to blue, a colour that can easily look overdone if you aren't careful.

Swatches can be seen here:

The liner shade is pretty pigmented and dark, but when you use it close to the lashline, it looks really nice. The white "C Curve" is supposed to go around the outer corner of your eye to brighten it up, but I'm sure you can also use it in the inner corner.

Overall, this palette is very versatile and, depending on the use of the liner shade, either subtle or a bit bolder. I can't wait to play around with it more, especially once I have the Anna Sui liner. I should have picked it up when I was in the Anna Sui store in Venus Forts, but I figured if I bought it at my local drugstore, I would get points, which will eventually lead to a coupon, thus I could buy more make-up. But they didn't have it for some reason. :( Anyway, I will get my fingers on it.

I also really like the very slim palette this shadow comes in. Very easy to carry around!

On a funny note, Ichibankao calls this palette "Beauty C Cup" accidentally. xD

This palette is pretty pricey, about 3.500 Yen, so I understand that not all of you can buy it. I was hesitating to get it, too, but I figured blue is a shade I do wear quite often lately, and also a shade you should be careful with - cheap blue eyeshadow can easily go wrong. ^^;
There is, however, a budget alternative to it. Visée's "Blossom Eyes" palettes, the pink one I have reviewed here, have a blue palette where the main colour, the blue, looked pretty much the same as Coffret d'Or's when I swatched both on my hand in the store, same for the silver. It has 5 shades instead of 3+1, and from my experience with the pink one, which I wasn't 100% satisfied with, I decided not to get it. It was also the full 1.800 Yen instead of the 1.200 I paid for the pink one back then. So, before I bought it, wouldn't like it and end up buying the Coffret d'Or one anyway, I figured I should save the money (!) and buy the Coffret d'Or one right away. Logic, I know.
I'm not saying Visée's palettes are bad, and if you are on a budget or only wear blue occasionally, you can totally pick it up. I just deciced to splurge a bit before I go home, and I don't regret it.

Are you for the cheaper alternatives or do you splurge sometimes?

Update: "A Touch of Blusher" has a review about 04 Peach Beige you might want to read as well if you liked the palette, but not the colour.
She also reminded me of Lavshuca's palette in blue which I reviewed here last month, and indeed, the blue and the silver look very similar to this one! Well, they're both Kanebo after all. Looks like I have so much eyeshadow I forget the exact shades and just buy new stuff... Oops. ^^;

Update 2: Missha's single eyeshadow in blue, which I will review later on, has a similar light blue colour and looks as sparkly as if the silver was already dabbed on it, so if you're more for one colour only, maybe try this one out.

Update 3: Picture of me wearing this palette according to the instructions on the back. (I like my own way of wearing it better, though.)
(Sorry, no mascara yet.)

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Update

Dear readers,

sorry for the long absence, but I really was very busy lately running around Japan.
I will post pictures of my new haircut as soon as my skin likes me again, because at the moment, I look horrible. Probably due to the stress, I did get breakouts again, and my dark circles can't be covered anymore. I hope after my onsen (hot spring) trip tomorrow, I will look presentable again.

I have good news for you, though! Since today was the double point day at my local drugstore, I got tons of new items to review for you! Including the new Coffret d'Or eye shadow palette! And also one limited Anna Sui nail polish! Look forward to my reviews!

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Hello! :)

It's been a while since my last post, sorry! I moved twice (!) this week and didn't have internet.

But... I went to get my hair cut! And dyed! The first time I had my hair dyed at a salon. I tried semi-perment sometime, which didn't work, and then one of those blond sprays, which I don't recommend.
Usually, I chopped my hair off pretty much every summer since middle school, but I kinda didn't last year. I had actually intended to let my hair grow and see how it looks, but the water here in Japan really kills it. >___<
So I let the lady in the salon cut off everything until a bit above shoulder length, and also dye it a dark brown to hide the ugly yellowish tone my hair gets in summer. (I'm what wikipedia calls "golden brown", a colour I actually like, but the yellow, oh no!)

I don't have any proper pics, but I will update you as soon as I have! I might also try some new make-up as the hair colour plays off my pale skintone really well.

Do you ever get radical hair changes?