31 October 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: Heidi Klum Luminous Face Powder Gems

Does Project Runway have some sort of deal going with Victoria's Secret? First the adorably fabulous Season 4 winner Christian Siriano released an eponymous makeup range for them, and now it's host Heidi Klum's turn.

Called Exotic Jewels, the range is inspired by Heidi's trip to Varanasi in India, and that inspiration is obvious in this gorgeous packaging:

The packaging reminds me of the vibrant colours and patterns of the saris I've seen in the windows of the Indian clothing stores dotted around Auckland. So very beautiful.

The Luminous Face Powder Gems are US$22.00, and more of Heidi's Exotic Jewels range can be found here.

30 October 2009

All I want for Christmas: number one in an occasional series

I want to brace yourselves my pretties, I have some disturbing news. Are you seated? Ok then: it's going to be Christmas soon.

It's ok, I'll just wait here while you calm down. In through the nose and out through the mouth remember.

As I was saying, 55 days till Christmas my pretties. And this year I'm determined that my Christmas shopping is going to be finished well in advance so that I can avoid the nightmare that is the mall pre-Christmas, and also so that our overseas parcels will be posted prior to New Zealand Post's cut-off of 30 November for international economy post. I still shudder when I think how much our parcels cost to send last year.

While I'm doing all this shopping I'm going to be posting some ideas here as well. From stocking stuffers to big ticket items, hopefully I can help you find something for the pretty people in your life.

First up, if you're in America, have a huge budget and are looking for a gift that a makeup lover will swoon over, then this could be just the thing:

The Makeup For Ever Aqua Eyes Collector Set contains the full range of 25 shades and comes in a collector's metallic case. US$425.00 from Sephora.

Your daily dose of pretty: Lavish magenta suede shoes by Fergie

It has been six whole days since I last posted some shoes for you my pretties. Restraint? I totally has it.

I'm on a no-shoe-buy at the moment, since The Eccentric English Boyfriend quite rightly pointed out that in the last month I bought - well - lots of shoes. Seriously. Lots.

So I'm going to post these for you, and then not buy them.





Look at the sexy curves on that heel, and the lavish ruffle detail:
US$99.99 from heels.com. Looking at the pretty and not buying the pretty. Not buying. Dum de dum, I am not buying the pretty. Dum de dum, dum de dum ...


29 October 2009

Another haul, and my stash

Here's another haul that arrived today, this time a bulk lot of cosmetics that I bought off TradeMe with all sorts of exciting (and not so exciting) items.

The whole lot came in a cute little silvery clutch bag, a little worn round the edges but I can definitely see me getting some use out of it - that colour will go with most everything. In front of it a bottle of Body Shop Total Energy Exhilarating Body Wash (with guarana, bergamot and luffa) which smells divine, and three rings, two of which I'll wear and the flowery one which ... erm .... not really me.

Maybelline Express Finish Taupe Tulle (which surprisingly I find myself drawn to), Revlon Dark Pleasures Scarlet Letter (love the Dark Pleasures range) and BYS Lolly Lick (most definitely not my colour).

Maybelline Forever Metallic Lites in Snow Perle (one for 14 Year Old Daughter - too frosty pink for me), Maybelline Shiny-licious lip gloss in Strawberry Tart (cute colour, I do find these Maybelline glosses are of the glue your lips together and stick your hair to your face variety though), and a Body Shop Hi-Shine Lip Treatment.

A Benefit Justine Case mini beautifier kit (I seem to remember my sister getting one of these as a gift with purchase when she bought her GHD's). Contains an Eyecon brightening eye cream, a California Kissin' smile brightening lip shine, and Some Kind-A-Gorgeous The Foundation Faker. The kit would have originally come with a Benetint lip and cheek stain in rose, but I bought one of those in Melbourne so no great loss.

A Maybelline XXL microfiber mascara in Very Black, a pink shimmer eyeshadow crayon which all the writing has rubbed off of, a Too Faced Liquid Light highlighting shimmer and a Castledew colorshot double ended eyeliner pencil (one end black, the other glittery white.

Swatches - on a hand which appears in the photo to be quite wrinkly around the wrist. This displeases me!

At the left is Body Shop Hi-Shine Lip Treatment, then from top to bottom Maybelline Forever Metallic Lites Snow Perle, Maybelline Shiny-licious Strawberry Tart, Benefit Some Kind-a-Gorgeous (too yellow for my skin), Benefit California Kissin', Too Faced Liquid Light, unnamed eyeshadow crayon (this one's definitely going to 14 Year Old Daughter - the colour's not quite right for my eyes plus the texture of eyeshadow crayons doesn't tend to work so well on not-quite-40-but-not-too-far-off eyelids), Castledew eyeliner black end and white end.

Lots of fun stuff to play around with in there. I didn't swatch the Benefit Eyecon eye cream because when I put it on my hand it didn't do anything - by which I mean I couldn't see it!

I spent some time this afternoon sorting out my polishes. I have to do this on a regular basis because my collection keeps outgrowing my storage. The Eccentric English Boyfriend would have me believe this is a good reason to stop buying polishes. To which I reply: "lalalalalalalala I can't hear you".

This is the storage trolley I keep all my polishes in - I like the fact that it's on wheels, when I'm doing manis I can wheel it out for people to choose their colour. You will notice at back right is Jessie, looking all stalky, and at left you can make out Fred who was in the middle of scratching his head against the couch. He makes the funniest little grunty noises when he does this.

The top tier, from left to right holos, duochromes and clear-based glitters, blacks, greys, whites golds and creams, reds, oranges and yellows.

The middle tier, from left to right yellow/greens, greens, blue/greens, blues.

The bottom tier, from left to right blurples, purples and pinks, and at the right my stash of untrieds.

And since my polishes have completely taken over the trolley, this lot had to go into containers.

At the back are my Seche Vite refill and my Seche Restore, then top row is manicure tools, a container of nail repair/treatments, hand creams and polish removers and a container of mini bottles of polish (unnamed or unknown brands). Front is my soaking dish (I always think these look like orange juicers!), a container of top and bottom coats and a container of nail art/Konad stuff.

Phew! I've seen lots of different storage solutions for us polish addicts. How do you store your polishes my pretties? Someone asked me the other day if I kept my polishes in the fridge, which made me laugh because although our fridge is huge if I put all my polishes in it there'd be very little room for anything else!

Today's nail: Glitter Gal Dark Purple and Blue

Here are two more from yesterday's Glitter Gal haul. I decided two coloured nails would be fun:

(What is up with Blogger? Two of those photos are upside down - I feel quite sea sick looking at them!)

Would you look at all that glitteriness. (Is SO a word!) Both of these were three coats - they could have been two coats but I was applying them quite thin. Of the three Glitter Gal polishes I've tried so far Blue is the first true holo, with the typical holographic rainbown appearance. The best application of any holo I've ever tried, with none of streaking and glugging that so many holos have given me. It is one pretty little blue baby.

Dark Purple, like Dark Green, is a gorgeous glitter bomb with lovely application. All three polishes dried super fast and super hard too.

Your daily dose of pretty: Twist collection by Forever 21

The new ballet-inspired Twist collection at Forever 21 might be not at all appropriate for those pushing 40 (ie: me), but I can imagine 14 Year Old Daughter having conniptions over some of the pieces, and they're reasonably enough priced that Santa might not be averse to seeing them on her Christmas wish-list.

Beaded Mesh Pleat Skirt, US$19.80

Oval Mesh Net Skirt, US$17.80

Poised Ballerina Tunic, US$17.80

Charisma Beaded Bracelet, US$6.80

What about you my pretties? Could you wear them? Would you wear them? 14 Year Old Daughter is going through a tutu phase at the moment. There is a very short period of time during any girl's life when she can get away with wearing a tutu, so go for it while you can I say!

Poor little courier man

Our poor courier man, we may have the two friendliest dogs in the whole world but when people come to the door they make a lot of noise. Enough noise that even when he has a 'sign for' parcel he simply drops it on the doorstep and runs. Surely though, if you're going to choose a career as a courier driver, you'd want to not be scared of dogs? Just saying.

Anyway, here's the contents of my parcel from TransDesign:

China Glaze Loves You Snow Much collection. Ruby Pumps, 5 Golden Rings, Tinsel and Emerald Sparkle. Mmmmmm, Emerald Sparkle. Photo doesn't do it justice, the pictures I've seen on other blogs are stunning - can't wait to put it on.

O.P.I. Tattoo Ta-Boo! minis set. Witch Arm?, Glow-ink in the Dark, Tattoo You Want Candy?, I Love Mummy. And super cute Halloween tattoos, those bats are adorable.

Orly La Petite French mani minis set. Orly Bonder base coat, Je T'aime, Sheer Nude and White Out. Not my colours obviously, but I'm doing nails for my little brother's wedding in December and the bride (hehe, I just typed that as 'bridge') has requested french manicures for herself and the bridesmaids so I thought I should have some appropriate shades. The inclusion of a mini Bonder is a bonus, because I've seen it recommended often and wanted to try it out.

Finally a bottle of my trusty CND Stickey base coat, a bottle of CND Air Dry, and a bottle of Poshe. I always like to try out new top coats when I see them recommended. I'm especially interested in trying Poshe, polish lovers seem to fall into two camps - those who love Poshe and those who love Seche Vite. I wonder which side I'll end up on?

28 October 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: Ginger dress from Red Dress Shoppe

Don't you hate it when you discover something in a sale and fall head over (stiletto) heels in love with it, only to find that it's sold out in your size? You'll be feeling my pain right now then my pretties:

*sob*. Why aren't I an Extra Small? Whyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy?

If you are (you lucky thing, I don't hate you at all, honest), it is on sale for only US$45.00 from Red Dress Shoppe.

I'm going to go eat some chocolate now ...

Today's Nail: Glitter Gal Deep Green

How much fabulousness can you fit into one ickle wickle 9ml bottle my pretties? Well thanks to Nixxy's Nails, I have discovered that at Glitter Gal they fit one hell of a lot of fabulousness in their little bottles.

When Nixxy blogged about the polishes by Glitter Gal (an Australian company) recently I fell in love and ordered four straight away. And here they are:

Left to right: Silver, Deep Green, Blue and Dark Purple.

AU$9.95 per 9ml bottle, how many shades of awesome are they?

I immediately had to put Deep Green on and my pretties I am head over heels in love with this baby:

*drool*. Of course the photos don't even begin to capture the dark green glittery gloriousness that is this polish. This polish - and I don't make decisions like this lightly - has moved to the top of my favourites list.

I cannot wait to try the other three polishes and I think ... no wait I KNOW ... that I'm going to have to order some more of these glittery babies.

Your daily dose of pretty: Hello Kitty Rocks earrings

Hello Kitty is everywhere these days. I mean everywhere - you name it, they've put Hello Kitty on it. And in some cases it's just disturbing. *shudder*

That aside, I'm quite fond of Hello Kitty myself. In small doses. And not - repeat NOT - on a sex toy, ever ever EVER. (Seriously folks, I've seen it with my own eyes.)

Moving along - these are cute, and not too over the top cute either:

Hello Kitty Rocks earrings, US$10.00 from Emerging Thoughts Boutique.

For some seriously whacky-Kitty, visit Hello Kitty Hell, one man's chronicle of his wife's obsession. If you're at all sensitive to pink and/or cute you might want to take a tranquiliser first.

27 October 2009

Paint your house, paint your nails

Kit Cosmetics have released yet another nail polish range that I have fallen in love with (and by that I obviously mean 'ordered straight away').

Kit have teamed up with paint manufacturer Dulux to create the Limited Edition Dulux Nail Polish collection. Kit say: Previewing 2010/2011 trends from Dulux’s just-released colour forecast, these nail polishes match four of Dulux’s hottest summer paint hues.

Left to right: DULUX Hot Calypso (pure coral), DULUX Blue Surf (ocean blue), DULUX Kiss (summer musk), DULUX Exotic Flower (sunset orange). AU$15.95 each.

I don't know about you my pretties but I'm in love (obviously, since I just ordered them all!). I'm especially looking forward to seeing Blue Surf and Exotic Flower on.

Now I wonder if I can convince The Eccentric English Boyfriend that we need to paint the house to match my nails ...

26 October 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: Dorothy Perkins duffle coat

From the time I was little I've desperately wanted a duffle coat, for one reason:

Image from the Official Paddington Bear website

You can have your Winnie the Poo's, your Yogi's and your Care Bears - my heart will always belong to Paddington. And his awesome duffle coat.

But if I'm going to go all Paddington, I want to be pretty too, and this is perfect:

PINK! Currently on sale for £52.00 at Dorothy Perkins. Of course the weather is more and more summery by the day here, but I figure if I wait till Dorothy Perkins has their end of winter sale I'll be buying it just in time for our winter. Except of course that's months away and I want it NOW!

24 October 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: Siren ankle boots

Spring has most definitely sprung at our end of the world, and the arrival of warmer weather means winter stuff on sale. Like these boots for instance:

Boots are one of the (few) good things about winter. Buckles on boots are just the icing on that cake, and the buckle detail on these is gorgeous. Currently on sale for NZ$199.99 down from NZ$229.99 on RoyalT.co.nz - obviously these are so timelessly gorgeous that to buy them now would be an excellent investment for next winter, wouldn't it?

Recycling is good

I love trawling through recycled clothing shops. Although it does seem to me that now that we call them recycled or vintage clothing shops their prices are quadruple what they were back in the day!

Anyway, The Eccentric English Boyfriend and I did a spot of browsing in some suburban second-hand (sorry - 'recycled') clothing stores, and I found myself a couple of gems. First, and most outrageously, these:

How unbelievably delicious are they? I don't like flowers on shoes, and I'm not often swayed by wedges, but I am so utterly in love with the over the top frou frou of these shoes! NZ$15.00 from a lovely wee shop whose name (or even location) completely escapes me, but I know I will be going back there. I also found this:

Ok seriously, I have no idea why the image is turned that way - it was fine until I uploaded it! You'll just have to turn your head. Hardly worn and a bargain at NZ$20.00, the denim is beautifully soft and it fits like a glove. Those sleeves are even the exact right length, no small feat on my short arms. Obviously it was meant to be.

Then at another shop in Ponsonby I picked up this cute wee cotton skirt for NZ$21.00.

Lovely light cotton, perfect for hot summer days.

Excuse me for just a moment here though, while I have a little rant. New Zealand may be a long, long way from anywhere, but online shopping and international delivery mean that overseas shops are not the exotic novelty they once were. Also, most of us are not too shabby at doing currency conversions in our heads. So when I see a pair of shoes with their original Marks & Spencer price tag still on I'm quite capable of working out that the price being charged for them second hand converts to not much less than they cost new, and I am most definitely NOT going to be stupid enough to buy them.

End of rant. And something yummy and pretty that we picked up on the way home:

Not quite as yummy as the ones I tried in Melbourne, but look at the adorable little care bear on the bottom right cupcake! And yes I totally ate him, and he was ... well actually, he looked better than he tasted!

Today's nails: LA Girl Turntable and Essie Barbados Blue

I've had quite a bit of luck lately stumbling upon stores selling brands I thought were unavailable in New Zealand. LA Girl for instance in the Life Pharmacy outlet store at DressMart - look!

Left to right: Blueberry, Metallic Purple, Turntable, Vinyl Record, Funkadelic, Deejay, Dance Studio and Bedazzle.

And here's Turntable (plus some cute nail art stickers):

Ok I apologise for my camera - both of today's swatches didn't capture particularly well, this one especially. Turntable is much greener, a delicious plasticky astro turf green that I love! Application was pretty good, two coats to opaque, a little prone to dragging but nothing major.

And here is a slightly fuzzy pic of Essie Barbados Blue, which I got a while ago from Grace's polish purge. (She's just had another one, I'm eagerly awaiting my parcel!)

Quite sheer, it took four coats to be opaque, and was very brush strokey and prone to cuticle drag. The colour's pretty - I know it's not a metallic but I think metallic when I look at it.

New Eyeko polishes

Eyeko have been teasing us for a while with the promise of six new nail polishes, and today I checked their site to find these little pretties:

Left to right: Cosmic Polish (Eyeko say: this night time hue is loaded with multi-coloured iridescent glitters like fireworks in a black November sky. An ultra, flattering nail look for those who favour the dark side.), Indigo Polish (keep nails short and blunt to nail this shimmery, midnight blue for a touch of cool gothic glamour à la Sophie Dahl.); Lilac Polish (dip your toe into the pastel trend. Just one coat of this gorgeous pale mauve creates that opaque sugared almond look Lily Allen craves.)

Eyeko have obviously listened to the comments about the difficulty of working with their old bottles - these new bottles look much easier to handle. Their packaging is still cute though is it not?

Just for this weekend the three polishes are available as a set for just £6.00 on the Eyeko website (the offer expires 26 October). You know I've already ordered mine!

Now we just have to wait for the other three they've been promising. Watch this space.

23 October 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: Carlos Santana shoes (no, seriously)

Some celeb fashion/beauty brands I can get my head around. Gwen Stefani? Totally makes sense that she'd have a fashion label. Brittney Spears? It's not too much of a leap to see her name on perfumes - I mean at least it's not underwear, that would just be hypocritical. But Carlos Santana releasing a range of women's shoes? Seriously?

Actually, I think I kind of like living in a universe where that can happen. And it turns out his shoes aren't too bad. There's a little too much animal print for my liking, but there's also some real pretty:

That's the Glamorous. It's a little bit conservative in a librarian chic way, which I love. Usually US$110.00, at the moment they're on sale on PiperLime for US$69.50.

For a look at the rest of the Carlos range, check out the website.