Cocoon Elixir, I wish you don't ever finish!

There might no be a relation between a chair and a toner but we might be seeing a clear pattern here.. Yuli here and Yuli there. While I have not tried a lot from the brand, there are already products that I would repurchase over and over again: The Cocoon and Pure Mask. I wish these two to never ever finish. There is also a Liquid Courage deluxe sample that's going to be featured on my next Empty post. I used it up a few weeks ago and I'm planning to purchase the full-size in my next shopping at IANS - I'm going to talk about that more later!

The spotlight now is on Cocoon Elixir.


My Soothing and Nurturing Skincare Routine

As a beauty blogger and not fortunate to have a resilient skin to begin with, I must say it's difficult. Exploring products are fun but changing products from time to time for the skin does not help. In my experience, my skin's proneness to congestion is usually due to moisturizers that are too heavy and products that are too sensitizing for my skin. Internally, I suspect hormonal imbalance as I've been getting acne on my chin, jawline and lower cheeks which I've never had before. Mentally and physically, I never feel great. I have seen a naturopath once which was very costly without a rebate but it was worth it as she explained a lot of good food, ingredients and a couple of supplement to be incorporated into my diet to alleviate the symptoms. As of now, I'm heavily focusing on my diet and probably 'easy and quick' supplements to take in between before we dwell even deeper to find the root of the problem.

All that aside, having a skincare routine that is soothing and nurturing is highly beneficial for my current state of being. With a more mindful diet and lifestyle, added supplement and suitable skincare routine, I do feel and look better inside and out. I have probably followed this routine for about two months now (except for the moisturizers which were new-found love) and I have seen good results. I have been using this during the temperamental spring-summer weather in Melbourne and also the hot and humid Indonesia. I usually panic not knowing what products to bring home since the weather is different, but I believe, this skincare routine is great for at least, most skin type, and is very balancing. 


Introduction to Australian Brands

Curious about what Australia skincare brands have to offer? Discover my 13 picks below!


Empties #1

My first Empties series.. a few mists, one facial oil and cream moisturizers for the face, body and hair.


My New Spring Scent: Leila Lou By Rosie Jane

"A native Australian now living in Los Angeles, Rosie's free-spirited lifestyle shines through this breezy, light scent. Named after her daughter Leila Lou and inspired by her work as a makeup artist and mother Rosie Jane has created a perfect daily scent".

This roll-on perfume is made with a blend of the finest essential oils. With notes of pear, jasmine and fresh cut grass, Leila Lou is clean fresh and totally addicting. 


Yuli Pure Mask

I have a slight obsession with treatment products but you already know that. My pores often gunky and congested and all I want is a reliable hand to count on (not my hands, promise!). Pure is another powder mask that is activated the moment you mix it with water and then glide that soft velvety paste onto your skin, leave on for 10-15 minutes to inject nutrients and antioxidants, purify and refine the skin, exfoliate and stimulate the skin with its botanical beauties. Question is, is it as good as it says?


My Signature Spring Look

More like winter/spring/crazy moody weather, am I right? Any Melburnian out there? Anyway, after seeing Jade's signature Summer look, I decided to do one my own but for Spring!  I love the rose cream shadow by Au Naturale and RMS Beauty lip2cheek Modest. Those are here to stay in my make-up bag. And uhm, I did eyebrow threading for the first time. Can you tell I rarely do my brow because you can see the tan line?


Soft White Gentle Face Polish

Are you looking for an effective creamy exfoliator that is a bit gentle but still effective to get rid of dead skin cells? Creamy and yet buffing + effective and yet soothing? If so, this exfoliator by Flight Skincare might be the answer you are looking for. Enriched with the nourishing Macadamia Oil, Passionflower that is high in Vitamin C and very finely crushed walnut and rounded jojoba beads to exfoliate, you will reveal a smooth and maybe an even brighter complexion too. 


ED4OLO Vitamin C Body Oil

I'm a little late to the ED4OLO party but it's better late than never in this case. I was pleasantly blown away by the sweet experience I had with most of their skincare products and eager to try more. This summer, they released a body oil that promises to deliver an intense hydration with its dense serum-oil facial grade ingredients, but for the body! It smells like their famous oil cleanser, so I just have to try.


Sneak Peek Into My Mum's Bathroom!

My mum complained about not finding an effective skincare line that addresses to her skin concerns and I think switching into using natural & organic product is not a coincidence. It has been two years now and she said she would never go back to using her usual Body Shop products. Her skin honestly looks better and natural & organic products only proves that it can be absolutely effective as well!


My Emergency Beauty Summer Kit

Summer is the most inconvenient because sometimes I forget to let the skin breathe -Oil, Cream, Foundation, Sunscreen..-. Where I am, the sun is still shining bright and while endless daylight can mean fun, I avoid staying outside when the sun is at its peak (it can reach 40c here!). These are my must-have items particularly for this hot season to keep me cool and sane. Have a great summer (sorry if I'm late) but I'm still drinking some icy fruity water and snacking on frozen grapes :) 


My First Dive Into Indah Organics

Indah Organics is a dive into tropical goodness somewhere in Bali overlooking deep into the vast Indian ocean. I imagine myself being transported in the calmness of Ubud while immersing myself in the richness of traditional beauty treatments that Bali has to offer. It's true that scent triggers memories, luckily, Teisha who is an Australian model as well as a health & well-being coach at Queen Coco, has almost captured this moment perfectly for me.


Sit Back Session

How long has it been since I last recapped this stunning jet-black mask? My review was here, but I probably have raved about it all over Twitter and other blogs. Since ever the Honey Mud comes out and since my mum finished MY jar (which she already bought another), I saved up my $40 to buy Manuka honey for my Problem Solver. I feel the need to sound like a broken record because Problem Solver + Honey is one perfect marriage. If not perfect, it's pretty close.


Too Sweet To Bathe in Candy?

I freaking love this body wash with a passion. I never find anything THAT special in a body wash except for one that is my ex-beloved shower cream, Palmer's Cocoa Butter. Sadly I had to part away, smells great and feels great on the skin.. you know how I feel about Cacao, Cocoa, Chocolate or anything in that matter, don't you? I have finally found the same spark I got like when I was using Palmer's Cocoa Butter.. Oh Andalou Gel Douche.


Stellar Sunrise #Color Combo

The lip color combo is inspired by Revlon Liquid Lipstick in Stellar Sunrise which color I love. While I was browsing at the drugstore the other day, the shimmery peachy-red color really enchanted me. While it does sound like 'what a stellar sunrise', it is not a bright orange either. I pulled out my lip stash as soon as I came home and see if there's any 'healthier' alternative that I can combine to make something similar. My first reaction was "RMS in Promise!".


FOTD #1 - Bed Hair & ... make up?

 Anyway, this is my true bed-hair, as a human with straight hair who's never satisfied, I love waves on hair, especially when they're subtle - It's like waking up with Feeling Good by Nina Simone in my head or Toxic by Britney Spears if I'm feeling extremely good (haha).I do love putting on a bit of colors before I go for breakfast, it's just one of those things that I cannot explain why but it's always a start of a good morning. 


February-March Haul

This is a collective haul, but still.. I might or might not have done so much damage to my own wallet. 

David Jones, Priceline & Aunt Maggie

Antipodes.. Antipodes.. Antipodes and I have got something going on. You might not be able to tell because I haven't been blogging much except for their day cream which I raved for being my favorite moisturizer of 2013. David Jones at Malvern Central is currently offering buy 2 get 1 free (+Joyful Hand & Body Creme too) until stocks last. 

The eye cream is rich in Vitamin C which hopefully will bring back life to my tired eye area and the hydrating serum is a water-charged, 'oil'free' and skin-plumping for dehydrated (water-deprived) skin. I'm not sure why my skin has been craving for so much TLC lately, is it the 8-hr jet-lagged or is it my skin missing the Clean Dirt? 

Worth mentioning that Delight and Joyful hand & body cream smell orgasmic.. (I wouldn't use this word unless needed). If you know me well, I love gourmet scent on my body so I gotta bow down to Antipodes who has made these two creams smell so edible. Both of them are fruity but possess a balanced sensual floral note. I would say Delight is a more mature sister of Joyful because of its stronger note of Gardenia. They are reminiscent of a bright and cheerful spring picnic in the garden at a long wooden table with some good wine, cripsy juicy apples and lovely companions. My imagination is always on the roll when I use these two body creams. 

I am guilty of still being a fan of 'generic' cosmetic brand such as The Balm but it is just so nostalgic to me. My purchase is their stain blush called Pinstripe, a plummy shade with tiny golden speckles and also their Anti-Wrinkle Concealer in Medium - Dark. Pinstripe is a jaw-dropping color, so unique and pretty and the creamy concealer covers really well and does not crease or settle into fine lines. Mine don't contain Paraben but I notice another version does? Here are the full listed ingredients if you're wondering (for mine): Concealer & Blush.

The two other products that I got was also Almay smoky eyeshadow for brown eyes because of that bronze and lilac shades oooh! I have also been loving a 100% neroli floral water from Aunt Maggie's. 


Lastly, I bought myself some Real Technique brushes (not pictured) and Deep Steep is also a brand that my love is slowly developing for.. Cherry & Almond scent is their newest release. It is so difficult to find cherry-scented body products so thank goodness Deep Steep came to the rescue. The Almond is a bit heavier than I'd like it to be, I only wish it is slightly more fruity with the cherry but still so good nonetheless (and doesn't smell like cough syrup). One more thing that I purchased is Acure Cleansing Gel, I really want to try it out since I love their Argan + Mint Cream Cleanser.

Are you guilty of haul-ing like me too? I seriously would want to know what products you've been excited to discover so far.

And what about some afternoon chill?

Happy 2014! (Late Post)

Greetings! I wish I could post as frequently as I would like to, but time and internet connection just didn't allow it. I was on a 'spiritual' journey for a week and it was such an amazing way for me to flip to a fresh page. I made peace with myself inside, I surrender, and I feel more calm than ever. So, happy belated new year! My diary is filled with plans and goals, and I am ready to conquer with an open heart and a wide smile. Welcome 2014!

In my last post, I gave you a review of one of my favorite releases of the year.. that is Blue Cocoon. I mentioned that I use it as a treatment on top of my cream if I still feel a bit parched in some area. I thought I would kick off my first 2014 post with my current skin care routine. It's nothing radical, but I feel better about my routine now that I've streamlined it a bit (yes it needs to be in bold and italic).

Daily Cleanser: Antipodes Grace Gentle Cream Cleanser

My preference with a cleanser always needs to be creamy and relaxing while still acting as a true cleanser that removes daily dirt and grimes including light make-up. In a flash, Grace fits the category, specified for sensitive or easily irritated skin. I kind of gambled when I had just one more day to shop until I left Australia, it cleanses well but it's nothing special. Texture-wise, it's creamy and easy to work into the skin (damp skin) but there is barely anything else that tickle my senses. Although formulated for sensitive skin, there has been a few times where it feels 'warming' on the skin, nothing major though.

Treatment Cleanser: May Lindstrom The Honey Mud

2-3x a week, or when my mum takes my Antipodes cream cleanser to her bathroom and then lock her bedroom, I use The Honey Mud as my special cleanser. It doubles as a soothing facial mask, which I love since I happen to have a cold right now. Cleansing with honey is excellent, but I still prefer the 'traditional' way of cleansing with creams/gels for daily. Saying that, it's not that The Honey Mud does not cleanse the skin well because it does. In fact, it ticks all the boxes including light make-up as it dissolves into a milky cleanser when you introduce water to it. Rinses off easy, smooth application, not sticky like Honey. Scent reminds me of a honey-liqueur, kind of like Bailey, I really enjoy it.

Daily Moisturizer: Antipodes Vanilla Pod Hydrating Day Cream

What is a moisturizer that does not hydrate? Unfortunately, I have experienced a few. In texture, it is pretty stiff for a cream and leaves a bit of a film when you first massage it, it's not my favorite texture. But let the goodness absorb, you won't even notice until you touch your face for the first time that day that it is so soft, juicy and supple. All cream moisturizers promise that but this one is telling the truth. It gives sufficient hydration so I can imagine using it all year around. Now that my skin is feeling super parched, it's not the case of 'a little bit goes a long way', but it makes the most flexible moisturizers I have ever used (whether it be summer or winter). The scent is a bit of Vanilla and Almond with a spritz of Mandarin, sweet but subtle. I use it day & night.

If I still feel dry, I use the Blue Cocoon as a flaky spot treatment.

Treatment Oil/Serum: May Lindstrom The Youth Dew

I swear by this oil since it is the only facial oil that actually feels like it's healing and softening my skin. I always have this rough spot on parts of my face that even an exfoliator won't do, but this does it. It's the most hydrating facial oil I own, quite dense but sinks in easy. The scent is uplifting, cheerful and yet relaxing and mellow. I don't like to go overboard using it everyday so I use this 2-3x a week, at night, to balance my skin, plump it up and give it a healthy dose of nutrients that it needs.

Facial Scrub: Acure Facial Scrub

I have given it a thorough review here, I like to call it the St. Ives scrub of the green beauty. It is affordable and does quite the job in removing dead skin cells. Don't get me wrong, my heart still beats for the Clean Dirt (and a shout out to Dr. Alkaitis enzymes exfoliator!). The reason I use this more instead of The Clean Dirt is because my skin cannot take the stimulating spices when it's sore. Acure's scrub, in terms of grittiness is not any less gentle (it's a bit rougher actually) but it is much of a no-frill scrub that I can use anytime I want to, although not as effective as I'd like it to be.

Facial Mask - Purifying: The Little Alchemist Cacao & Banana Glow Face Mask + La Bella Figura Healing Mask & May Lindstrom Problem Solver + The Honey Mud 

Without realizing, I might be slightly fanatic about honey for the face. If I've been breaking out a lot and the weather is humid, I use The Little Alchemist mask with water alone or mix with a tsp of raw honey. It is my quick fix for my problematic skin. If I want something soothing but still a bit purifying, I steal my mom's La Bella Figura Healing Mask. And what I'm about to tell you is quite the superstar too that I recently discovered: Problem Solver + Honey Mud to get myself blushing again! If you find Problem Solver too intense for your skin, try it with honey. It seriously tones down the intense spiciness and it makes my face so smooth, glowing and renewed. It is my mum and brother's favorite mix too.

Sometimes travelling forces you to bring the stuff that you TRULY need and you know will be gentle for the skin. I will, of course, give each product that I have not reviewed, a full review in the future. Have a fantastic year, looking forward share more.