On that brow game

by jamie-lee on September 24, 2015, 5 comments

rimmel styling gel brow sculpting kit

Rimmel Brow Styling Gel & Brow This Way Sculpting Kit*

This past year has seen me become a complete beauty convert. From the girl who thought that dusting bronzer all over her face, to the girl now, who seldom fails to leave the house with a little bit of colour in her cheeks and full-looking brows.

My holy grail, never-want-to-be-without-it brow product has been the Anastasia Brow Wiz, which is arguably one of the quickest, fail-proof brow products out there, but lately, another brow product has been after my heart.

That product, is the recently launched ‘Brow this Way’ sculpting kit from Rimmel. It’s a bit of change given I’ve been exclusively using a brow pencil up until now, but I’ve really been enjoying rocking the bold(ish)-looking brow that I get from applying some of the dark ashy coloured wax from this little brow duo.

I’ve picked this up in the shade medium brown, which is an ideal match for me. The wax is an ashy dark brown that blends in very naturally with my brows. The formula itself sets down almost immediately, and a little goes a long way. I’m by no means a brow-pro, but this is such a simple product to apply; it’s not quite as fool-proof as the Brow Wiz, but it’s pretty darn close. I use the thicker side of the small brush which comes with the compact to apply the wax and fill out my brows *just a little*. I then use the miniature spooly to brush through my brows and distribute the product a little more evenly.

The other half of the duo has a very warm-toned powder which is apparently to be used to set down the wax, but honestly, I’ve barely touched this. The shade is far too warm-toned for my brows (although it could possibly double as a shadow), and I haven’t really found it necessary to use over the wax, as this sets down on its own.

In terms of wear time, this doesn’t budge or smudge and even after a long day at work, I’ll go home and my brows will still be intact.

rimmel styling gel brow sculpting kit
The top two images are me rocking my natural brows; the bottom left is with one natural and one filled in; and the bottom right is my brow game strong

The Brow Styling Gel on the other hand, I’m not quite so sold on although I’ve been trying to persevere with it. The formula of the three shades I’ve tried (clear, medium brown and dark brown) is quite wet, and doesn’t seem to do much to keep my brows in place – not that they’re unruly to begin with though! Of the options available, I prefer the coloured brow gels as they are great at subtly enhancing your natural brows for those days where you want a more natural look. While I do have complaints about the very wet formula, once applied, the product is incredibly lightweight and is feels like add a subtle touch of colour.

It has a small mascara style wand, making it quite easy to use although you do need to act with a bit of precision when brushing the product through the tail of your brows (think of it a little like ‘drawing within the lines’). I find that the wand tends to retain a lot of the gel when drawing it from the tube so I’ve been wiping this off lightly just to get a more even application.

While my brows are very dark brown (or almost black), I’ve found that the medium brown shade works best for me; the dark brown can look a little bit heavy and when applied whereas the medium brown has a much softer look to it.

The wear time on the gel is excellent; the tint lingers all day, and as the product is quite wet, it has the benefit of drying down to a natural – far from crunchy – finish.

Both products have been helping to keep my brow game strong, as I’ve been quietly rationing what’s left of my Anastasia Brow Wiz (and forgetting to reorder it on the reg…), and I’ve been liking the flexibility between a softer, natural-looking brow, and one that’s just a little bit bold. I’m still not completely ready to toss out the Brow Wiz and commit to Rimmel’s latest offering entirely, but it’s definitely earned a place in my beauty rotation and I have been reaching for it a lot lately.

rimmel styling gel brow sculpting kit

Have you picked this up and if so, I’d love to know what you thought in the comments below! x

A cosy nook

by jamie-lee on September 22, 2015, 3 comments

home decor inspiration

image source – pinterest

With rain scheduled in Sydney all this week – in addition to a bitter chill – this airy little nook is looking pretty cosy right about now…


by jamie-lee on September 20, 2015, 3 comments

outfit equipment silk phillip lim mansur gavriel ghillie flats
outfit equipment silk phillip lim mansur gavriel ghillie flats
outfit equipment silk phillip lim mansur gavriel ghillie flats
outfit equipment silk phillip lim mansur gavriel ghillie flats
outfit equipment silk phillip lim mansur gavriel ghillie flats

Equipment white silk blouse, 3.1 by Phillip Lim skirt (also love this one from Phillip Lim!), Mansur Gavriel bucket bag, Topshop kingdom ghillie flats

Another weekend come and gone, and a Sunday over far too soon – weekends just really are never long enough, are they? Ours was spent doing all of the important things – a trip to Bunnings to start the foundations of our herb garden, a couple of hurried calls to some local catteries and kennels, and at least a good two hours deliberating over what colour confetti balloons to get for our engagement party. Yep, all the important things… :P

I recently shared my Spring capsule wardrobe on my YouTube channel, and while an in-depth breakdown is on its way, I thought I’d share one of my favourite day-to-evening looks that I’ve been reaching for lately. Nothing beats a silk blouse, and Equipment are pretty much at the top of the game, although I must admit to constantly living in fear of the dreaded spill (which is always an issue when wearing white as it is), as I’ve been clumsier than usual as of late; which might go some way in explaining why my dry cleaner is so friendly with me… But that aside, I’ve found that this is the perfect look to go from work, to weekend to play, just by simply changing up the accessories.

For the office, a fine knit cardigan and a large oversized tote; for the weekend, as above with a leather jacket draped over the shoulders for good measure; and for play, swap your bag out for a clutch, throw on a pair of high heeled sandals and loosen up the look a little bit by popping the top button. I am all for those pieces which do double duty, and for those which can manage doing triple duty – is that a thing? – well, it’s an added bonus.

Model off duty

by jamie-lee on September 18, 2015, one comment

MBFWA sydney australia street style models off duty

So last night I was thinking about boyfriend jeans – or… my complete lack there of – after stumbling across this snap that I took more than five months ago now. Worn with a loose blouse, grain leather chelsea boots, and a devil may care attitude.

I’m currently listening to the pitter patter of the Springtime rain tapping against my window, which seems like the perfect excuse to curl up in bed a little early (rum and coke in hand) while searching for the one. I’m not quite aiming to look as nonchalant as this model just-off-the-runway, but I feel like a pair of boyfriend denim (like this tomboy jean from Nobody Denim) would get me pretty darn close.

Maybelline Color Drama lip pencils

by jamie-lee on September 16, 2015, 5 comments

maybelline color drama lip pencils
maybelline color drama lip pencils

I love a good drugstore (or budget) dupe as much as anyone, so when I started to see these Maybelline lip crayons crop up in countless YouTube videos, being touted as better than NARS, I was intrigued. And then I found out that for the time being, they were exclusive to the UK, at which point I managed to convince one of my besties living over there, to haul a few of these lip crayons back to Sydney, just so I could try them out (thanks Em!).

I ended up rounding out my collection (read: buying every possible shade available) while back in New Zealand due to a fortuitously timed 3 for the price of 2 sale on Maybelline, and after having these lying about in my dresser for a good few months now, I figured it was as good a time as any to share my thoughts on these wallet-friendly lip crayons.

Firstly, it’s probably worth pointing out that Maybelline have (one of) the best lipstick formulas available at an affordable price point, so from the get go, I knew these were going to be good. They’re reasonably priced at $9.95 (AUD) a pop, compared to $39 (AUD) for a NARS velvet matte lip pencil. These are a fair bit smaller that the NARS pencils, however they do have pretty good lasting power that the smaller product size doesn’t weigh too heavily in forming my opinion (plus, they’re cheaper!).

The finish of these pencils varies depending on the shade; some appear more satin than others, whereas others dry down to more of a semi-matte finish. From experience, I’ve found that the shades with a more satin finish don’t have quite the same wear time as the semi-matte shades, and are more likely to require a complete reapplication after eating a meal and consuming a few beverages.

There is a little bit of inconsistency between the shades when it comes to creaminess and pigmentation, with some being easier and more comfortable to apply than others. However once these are on the lips, it can be quite easy to forget that they are even there. The formula is not very drying at all, although I would recommend prepping your lips prior to application with a little bit of lip balm or a lip primer.

The wear time with these pencils is pretty good; I found that after about four hours, I start to get a little bit of fading, so these definitely aren’t a swipe and leave your lipstick at home type of product. The fading is pretty even across the lips although with the darker colours in particular, you will end up with a lip liner effect if you forget to touch these up.

Even after several hours of wear, these didn’t settle into any fine lines on my lips, nor did they bleed around the edges, even with the darker shades.

So are these better than NARS? Well… no, not quite. Like NARS, the formula of each shade seems to vary slightly, with pigmentation and creaminess being more present in some shades than in others. The other issue, for me particularly, is that these very unfortunately resulted in an allergic reaction to my lips, which is something I don’t experience when using the NARS lip pencils. It’s probably worth pointing out that I have extremely sensitive skin and only after a reaction to a FRESH lip balm have I started to have this issue with lipsticks.

It truly is disappointing as otherwise, these are really the bargain that they’re been touted as being, and for someone who isn’t in the market to blow a bit of money on NARS – because let’s face it, shopping at the NARS counter can quite quickly get a little spend-y – this is such a great alternative.

maybelline color drama lip pencils swatches

L to R: Nude Perfection, Minimalist, Love My Pink, Fuchsia Desire, In With Coral, Fab Orange, Light It Up, Red Essential, Pink So Chic, Berry Much

While these lip pencils are long-lasting, they aren’t quite able to completely endure a full meal and several drinks (like my NARS lip pencils can); these tend to wear off to a slight lip liner effect, so you will need to carry the pencil in your purse for any necessary touch ups. I put this mostly down to the fact that these are much creamier and softer on the lips, and don’t have that same matte finish.

Given I’m partial to a bold lip, it’s probably no surprise that the shades that really stood out to me include Light It Up and Berry Much; which I’d also argue are those which have the better formula (and colour) of the lot. I’d advise steering clear of In With Coral and Nude Perfection as these were less even in application or would sit on the lips and emphasis any natural lines.

Rather than let mine creep to the back of the beauty drawer, I’m going to be sharpening them and passing them on – a little sad given how excited I was to stumble across these. All in all, it’s a good product from the drugstore, but not one for those with sensitive lips like mine (and trust me when I say, eczema on your lips is not a fun thing…).

Is this a product that you’ve tried out and if so, what were your thoughts? x

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