21 August 2014

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The Best Beauty Instagrammers: Who To Follow

Best Beauty Instagrammers

I don’t know about you, but I can get lost in the world of Instragram for hours. Searching beauty hashtags is a particular favourite of mine – I find myself gazing appreciatively at all the lovingly styled photographs of fellow beauty enthusiasts. If you’ve ever tried to take photographs of cosmetics or styling tools, you’ll know just how frustratingly difficult it can be to make them look chic. I wanted to share some of my current favourite beauty Instagrammers with you because the photographs always inspire me, and I hope they will inspire you too! Please let me know who your favourite beauty Instagrammers are  - I’m always on the hunt for new accounts to stalk…

PS If you don’t already follow All Dolled Up on Instagram (rude), you can find us here.

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18 August 2014

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Updated: Camilla’s Skincare Routine

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It’s been a couple of months since I last gave you a run down of my skin care routine, so I thought it was high time to give you an update (I assume, of course, that you are interested…here’s hoping). There are still some tried and tested favourites firmly in rotation, but there are also a few newcomers which have been really impressed me. I’m going to try and keep this as short and sweet as possible, so here we go…

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14 August 2014

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Carry On Beauty

Travel Beauty: Carry-On Only | All Dolled Up

Tomorrow I will be getting on a plane and heading back to Greece for a well-deserved three week holiday and I. CAN. NOT. WAIT. This time we are going to limit our luggage to carry-on only which seems wonderfully practical when you have to catch four flights and a ferry to get to your destination, but it also poses some packing problems in the beauty department.

Travel Beauty: Carry-On Only | All Dolled Up

I’ve taken up the challenge though, and whittled down my toiletry bag to include only limited liquids and plenty of travel-size items to maximise space. Using up samples and testers is a great way to do this, so I’m taking some Dermalogica Precleanse Wipes, a mini Smashbox Full Exposure Mascara and a little pot of Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch. Baby-size bottles of my favourite multi-tasking oils also make a handy addition to the stash, like the REFerence of Sweden Argan Oil (for hair, cuticles, dry elbows, etc.) and Treemendus Organic Tea Tree Essential Oil (for its myriad anti-bacterial uses).

Travel Beauty: Carry-On Only | All Dolled Up

One of my travel beauty secret weapons is the Seanik solid shampoo from Lush – it cleans without stripping and adds some texture and volume, plus you don’t need to decant your liquid shampoo into a little bottle that is likely to explode in your toiletry bag (review here). Rounding off the carry-on kit are a couple of Glamglow BrightMud Eye Treatment pods (perfect for de-puffing tired plane eyes), Clinique Even Better Dark Spot Defense SPF 45 (a powerful sunscreen with an added tint so you get protection and light coverage in one step) and NARS Multiple in Orgasm, a creamy blush stick that I can apply with fingers (so no need for a separate brush) and since it has a subtle sheen to it, I don’t need to pack a separate highlighter either.

Do you have any tips for packing light and avoiding the dreaded 100ml rule? 

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11 August 2014

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Quick Reviews #6

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Milk_Shake Conditioning Whipped Cream and Leave In Conditioner

Milk_Shake uses milk proteins and various fruits to create a natural haircare range to suit every hair type. The range aims to restore the hair’s natural components and nourish the hair fibre to ensure that the hair looks bright and soft.

The Conditioning Whipped Cream contains milk and wheat proteins to condition the hair, and special emollients provide deep and long-lasting hydration. I found this product a real pleasure to use – it has a mousse texture but absorbs into the hair quickly leaving no stickiness whatsoever. I was expecting it to weigh my hair down, but it didn’t at all – instead my hair felt soft, smooth and bouncy (lightweight formula + intense hydration = might as well be a bullseye). The sweet-milk smell is also rather delicious – but if that isn’t your flavour profile then don’t let it deter you as it doesn’t linger on the hair and after a little while you won’t be able to smell it.

The Leave In Conditioner is aimed at those with normal to slightly dry hair. The milk proteins strengthen the structure of the hair, while the combination of fruit extracts, honey and silicon leave the hair looking shiny and healthy. This formula is lighter and not quite as intensive as the Conditioning Whipped Cream, but it still did a great job of injecting some moisture into my locks. If you colour your hair you will be pleased to know that both of these products contain ingredients which will extend the life of your colour – bonus!

The verdict: I’m not sure that I would forgo my beloved L’Oreal Pureology Hydrate conditioner permanently, but these Milk_Shake conditioners are a nice alternative for when I need to save a bit of time in the morning. They are easy to use, they smell great and they do a fantastic job. I would recommend the Leave-In Conditioner for those with slightly dry hair, and the Conditioning Whipped Cream for those with properly dry hair, like mine.

If you’d like to give Milk_Shake a try for yourself, you can call (021) 552 2369 to find your nearest stockist. 

QVS Deluxe Egg Sponge

Finally, a decent Beauty Blender dupe! I stumbled upon this sponge in Woolies the other day and knew I had to give it a try to see if it compared to the hallowed Beauty Blender. Whilst it’s not as soft or bouncy as the Beauty Blender, it still creates a beautiful effect and gets into all the little nooks and crannies to ensure a completely seamless finish. As with a Beauty Blender, I dampen it before I use it – it helps to soften the sponge so you can really work your foundation into your skin (without that bit of moisture it’s too compact and not as pleasant to use – plus it absorbs far more product). Given the choice between the two I have to say that I would choose my Beauty Blender, but if you’re not able to get your hands on one then this Deluxe Egg Sponge is a great alternative.

Available from Woolworths for R130.00.

Bourjois Volume 1 Seconde Mascara

Jules and I were sent some Bourjois goodies recently and, never having tried a Bourjois mascara, I couldn’t wait to give this one a try. The wand itself it quite fat and the bristles are very short, so you can really wriggle it into the base of the lashes to create the impression of a fuller lashline.

Bourjois

The wand is also rather flexible, which allows you to maneuver it around all the tricky spots to make sure that every single lash is properly coated. Handy. It adds a decent amount of length too, and the bristles do a great job of separating and defining each and every lash. Another thing I appreciate about this mascara is that it washes off easily – nothing aggravates me more than stubborn mascaras which require multiple dousings of Bioderma to remove. The only negative point would be that it does tend to smear a little bit after a couple of hours (by “a couple” I mean after 8-10 hours of wear) – so I sometimes see that annoying mascara stain just below my eyebrows (who know the one). But besides that one little gripe, I think this is a stellar offering from Bourjois – if you’re in the market for a new drugstore mascara, I would highly recommend it.

Available from Clicks for R139.95 (also comes in a waterproof version).

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7 August 2014

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Shopping the Stash #2

Shop the Stash | All Dolled Up

The problem with having too much make-up and a short attention span, is that lots of lovely products tend to get forgotten and start to gather dust in the shadow of the shiny and new. I’m making a huge effort to work through the stuff I have (hence all the recent empties posts!) instead of constantly buying new things, and part of that is “shopping the stash”. I had a rummage around in my kit and brought out some goodies I know I love that I’m going to try and use more often:

Shop the Stash: Wet n Wild Walking on Eggshells | All Dolled Up

Wet ‘n Wild “Walking on Eggshells” Colour Icon Eyeshadow Trio

I bought this nearly a year ago (review here) and have hardly used it, which is a shame because it’s great. The quality is ridiculously good – especially for something under R100! – and the colours are really wearable and versatile. Wet ‘n Wild recently rolled out to Clicks stores nationwide (previously it was only in selected stores) so it’s much more easily available and super affordable. If you haven’t tried anything from the brand yet, then do yourself a favour and pick up a couple of their signature products, like the Pearlescent Pink blush (NARS Orgasm dupe), Megalast nail polishes and fabulous semi-matte lipsticks.

Shop the Stash: Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre | All Dolled Up

Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré

I can’t decide how I feel about this product – on the one hand, it’s a lovely moisturiser that forms a beautiful, smooth base for make-up but on the other hand, it’s quite a low-tech, mineral-oil-rich formula that doesn’t really do enough for my dehydrated skin. Having used it a few times recently as a make-up base I can say that it’s one of the better primers in my collection and I think that’s probably the only role it will fulfil for me. Those with dry skin that isn’t particularly demanding might love it though so worth a try if you fit the bill. I bought mine from Cult Beauty.

Shop the Stash: Sleek Luminous Pressed Powder | All Dolled Up

Shop the Stash: Sleek Luminous Pressed Powder | All Dolled Up

Sleek Luminous Pressed Powder

Ooooh I love Sleek, it’s such a pity it’s so hard to find. As far as I know, the only place you can find it in Cape Town is the Foschini in Golden Acre, which is utterly ridiculous. It’s another affordable but high quality brand with an awesome product range and worthy of a lot more attention than it gets (certainly in this country). This powder is perfect – non-cakey, good neutral golden tone (I have Shade 02), offering light coverage that leaves skin with a healthy glow. Another one of their products that I don’t use enough is the Natural eyeshadow palette – it’s only R100! Highly recommended.

Shop the Stash: MAC Naked pigment | All Dolled Up

MAC Naked Pigment

I picked this up as part of the MAC Nocturnals collection last year, knowing in my heart that while the set looked very pretty, I probably wouldn’t get much use out of it. This turned out to be true but only because they hide in a part of my make-up drawer that is difficult to see so I basically keep forgetting about them. I decided to reacquaint myself with the most wearable shade, Naked (which is also sold individually as part of the permanent collection), and have been loving it. MAC pigments are gorgeous applied wet or dry and last for ages on the eyes with minimal creasing (zero if you use a primer). They’re a bit fiddly to work with but the super-fine texture makes blending a dream. Nyx also do a very similar product called Loose Pearl Powders if you’re looking for a cheaper alternative.

Shop the Stash: Catrice Eyebrow Filler | All Dolled Up

Catrice Eyebrow Filler

My fine, blonde eyebrows are my most frustrating feature by far – at least with my hair, I can curl it and load it up with styling products to make it look full and volumised. Try doing that with your eyebrows! There is only so much I can do to fake the Cara Delevingne look, including monthly eyebrow shaping and tinting (go to Danielle at Mooi – just trust me) and filling in my eyebrows every single day with a pencil and/or powder. I don’t have the discipline or patience for hair growth serums so a tinted eyebrow gel is a great addition to my routine, as it gives my brows some much-needed but very natural-looking definition. This one from Catrice is cheap and cheerful, and does a great job of adding dimension and texture to my drawn-on face framers.

Have you rediscovered any old products recently?

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5 August 2014

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My Everyday Make-up Kit

My Everyday Make-up Kit

My Everyday Make-up Kit

In case you missed it, last week professional make-up artist, all-round cool girl and fellow beauty blogger, Shahnaz Loves Beauty, featured us on her site. Shahnaz won the Fairlady Beauty Blogger of the Year in 2013 so she sure knows her stuff, plus she also has a fab YouTube channel where she does great tutorials – we highly recommend that you check it out.

My Everyday Make-up Kit

My Everyday Make-up Kit

I shared my everyday make-up kit so the products that I use when I’m not doing a full-on eyeshadow look or lots of contouring. Read more »

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1 August 2014

3 Comments

Friday Fun: Top Bits to Read and Watch…

TGIF, amirite?! Things have been so hectic for Jules and I recently that we haven’t really had the time to post as regularly as we normally do. Regular programming will resume shortly, we promise! In the meantime, because it’s Friday (and no one really works on a Friday…do they?), I’ve put together a little list of all the posts and videos I’ve enjoyed recently – have a read/watch and it’ll be 5pm before you know it. You’re welcome!

Move Over Coconut Oil, Papaya in Here – XO Vain 

ADU 1

If you’ve ever used Lucas Paw Paw Ointment, you’ll already have a deep love for papaya. Here are some additional ways to incorporate it into your beauty routine.

What My Makeup Bag Looks Like Right Now – Vivianna Does Makeup

ADU 2

Because I love snooping around in other people’s makeup bags, and because I love Anna.

Hair Tips from Celebrity Hairstylist Jen Atkin – Beauty Editor 

ADU 5

Because learning never ends, ladies.

Side note: for the best blowdry EVER, watch this tutorial from Claire Marshall (who, by the way, is one of my favourite Youtuber’s…subscribe to her channel right now):

The Top Shelf: Isamaya Ffrench – Into The Gloss

ADU 4

Get a glimpse into the life (and makeup collection) of the beauty editor of i-D Magazine. She’s done some very, um, interesting and entertaining work…you’ll know what I mean when you read the article. I laughed so hard.

How To create Fuller Lips, with Mary Greenwell – Get The Gloss

Lightbulb moment.

Favourite Makeup of Molly Sims, by Molly Sims and Monika Blunder

Molly Sims is so beautiful I feel like I can’t even look directly at her. And Monika Blunder is such a sweet and charming woman – I adore her videos.

Donatella Versace Sunbaked Smoky Makeup, by Sam Chapman of Pixiwoo

Not a fan of Donatella (I mean, who is? The woman IS leather – gross), but I really loved this look. In the words of the Dowager Countess (Downton Abbey), “nothing succeeds like excess” – perfectly illustrated here!

Angelina Jolie Oscars Makeup, by Harry Makes It Up

A new discovery, thanks to Jules. The model in this video gave me major eyebrow envy, and the finished looks is absolutely gorgeous.

February – May 2014 Empties, by Chelsea Wears

Another one of my favourite Youtuber’s (you have to subscribe, seriously. Your life will be better for it)! Chelsea is hilarious and gorgeous and honest – I am a little bit obsessed with her (not in a creepy way).

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31 July 2014

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Product Empties #3: Hair

Empties: Hair | All Dolled Up

Empties: Hair | All Dolled Up

L’Oréal EverRiche Nourishing & Flowing Shampoo and Conditioner

This is another one of those products where I simply can’t understand why they aren’t available in South Africa. It is the most brilliant range of sulphate-free cleansing and styling products for different hair types; from weak and over-processed to frizzy and hard to control to dry and damaged. They lather up like a dream and are enriched with botanical oils to nourish dry, fine hair, adding a moisture boost that actually leaves your locks feeling thicker when its dry. The scent is absolutely DELICIOUS and it really lingers in the hair – I love being able to smell it throughout the day! These two bottles lasted me the better part of a year (although I use three or four other shampoos too) and I’ve already bought their replacements.

Empties: Hair | All Dolled Up

Bumble and bumble Surf Foam Wash Shampoo and Creme Rinse Conditioner

I’m a big fan of the elusive “day two hair”, mostly because I can never achieve it naturally as I have to wash my hair every day. I bought this combo in an effort to experience that awesome body and texture in clean hair, which is exactly what the Surf range promises to do. Um… I wouldn’t say it was wildly successful. I think perhaps it’s better for people with thicker hair to begin with, and I can see how it would probably add a bit of extra bounce for them, but for me it didn’t really do much. My hair is so thin and fine that there just isn’t much to work with, and the only thing that does to trick of adding volume and texture are styling products, like sea salt and texturising sprays.

Empties: Hair | All Dolled Up

TREsemmé Instant Refresh Dry Shampoo*

As you will know by now, I am a lifelong devotee of Batiste dry shampoo. It just does the job and I am never without a full size can, a travel size can and a box of back-ups. So when the nice people at TREsemmé sent us their version to try, I was suspicious but intrigued. I know that Chantelle is a fan of the Radiance version so I was also optimistic and it turned out to be… ok. I wouldn’t say its much better or worse than Batiste, and it did the same job of freshening up oily roots and adding some texture to the hair without leaving a residue behind. The only real difference is in the scent (Batiste’s range is much larger in this regard) and the texture – I think Batiste’s product is a little bit finer, although this might be down to different spray nozzles. I’ll probably stick to Batiste for now but TREsemmé’s dry shampoo is a bit cheaper, so if you’re on a budget then go for it.

Empties: Hair | All Dolled Up

Charles Worthington Volume & Bounce Texturising Spray

I probably shouldn’t go on about this one again, considering that I’ve now mentioned it in two videos (March Favourites and our most recent UK Haul) and all our social media channels! Just in case you missed it though, this is billed as a drugstore dupe for the famous and very expensive Oribe Dry Texturising Spray. It adds oomph and texture to the hair while helping to hold your style in place. I use this whenever I curl my hair as it gives my slippery locks the grip they need to hold a curl for hours, sometimes even overnight (unheard of for me). I love this product to death and I already have three more back-ups.

All the headings link to websites where you can buy each product online for delivery in SA (if possible).

*PR sample

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25 July 2014

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Product Empties #2: Skincare

Product empties no 2 - Skincare | All Dolled Up

Soap & Glory Clean on Me Shower Gel

This is my second bottle and I’m pretty sure I’ll be buying a third – love this stuff! It smells absolutely delicious and is creamy and nourishing without being too thick. It lathers up like a dream and leaves behind a subtle scent that lingers briefly on the skin. I pair it with The Breakfast Scrub on days when I need to exfoliate my legs and arms, leaving me with smooth, sweet-smelling limbs. Both are usually available from rubybox but they seem to be out of stock at the moment.

Price: R190 (500ml)

Product empties: Bioderma Sensibio H2O and Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair

Bioderma Sensibio H20 Cleanser

I think I said in our last empties video that every “products I’ve used up” post will always include a bottle of Bioderma, and here it is! Do I need to explain? Takes off make-up. Gentle. Effective. Effortless. Great value. If you don’t use this then I’m not sure if we can still be friends.

Price: R180 (250ml)

Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II

There are a few tried and true cult products in the beauty world that have achieved platinum status (think Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, Kiehl’s Creme de Corps and Philip Kingsley Elasticizer) and this is one of them. I use this most evenings underneath my moisturiser, pressing two to three drops into my fingertips and over my whole face. The texture is that of a light liquid gel and it dries down quickly without feeling tacky or greasy. It’s the kind of all-rounder serum that is instantly hydrating and also helps to brighten and clarify the complexion over time. My skin is generally good so I don’t have any miraculous tales to tell you but I wholeheartedly believe in the ingredients (hyaluronic acid, antioxidants and purifying cell renewal boosters) and the product’s impressive heritage. It’s the kind of thing I know will benefit me in the long run, but doesn’t necessarily make a huge difference to my skin day to day. Definite repurchase… At some point. From Duty Free. When I’m feeling flush.

Price: R675 (30ml)

Product empties: The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter

The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter

I picked this up at the same time as my first bottle of Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil and have been using it for the second evening cleanse. It has the texture of coconut oil at room temperature i.e. a solid that melts into a light oil in the warmth of your hands. There is nothing wrong with this product other than the fact that it’s competing with my beloved Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm – and that’s like comparing a family sedan with a vintage roadster. They both get you from A to B but the roadster is a lot more fun! It’s perfectly good at breaking down make-up and daily grime from the face, it emulsifies easily (I wipe away the residue with a warm, soft cloth) and is nice and affordable. So if you’re a Practical Pam then this is the cleansing balm for you; if you need a bit of citrus-scented luxury in your life, then it’s time to get on the Emma Hardie train.

Price: R140 (90ml)

Product empties: Clinique Smart Custom Repair Serum

Clinique Smart Custom-Repair Serum*

This is a tough one. Serums in general are really hard to review because they mostly offer long-term benefits rather than instant ones, and since my skin is generally in good condition, I find it very difficult to tell whether a serum is working or not. This is Clinique’s new and much-hyped do-it-all wonder product – it’s supposed to magically target your problem areas, providing custom repair where your skin needs it most. The science is difficult to believe but with a brand like Clinique, I feel comfortable trusting that it works like they say it does. I certainly enjoyed using it, but one of the biggest problems is that I seem to have whizzed through the bottle in no time at all. I managed to finish it up in a matter of weeks and the bottle is the same size as the ANR (although it’s a pump dispenser so I’m sure there’s lots of product left inside that I can’t get out). Considering this, and the fact that so far it’s an unproven product, I’ll be sticking to my ANR for now.

Price: R700 (30ml)

*PR sample

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