Is it as good as I remember? Lush Edition

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This is a series where I review products that I once loved to find out if the product still delivers. The rules are simple: It must be at least a minimum of three years since the last time I used the product. This is just a response to the idea that personal taste changes and that what you once loved might no longer be to your preference.

 

Lush is a cosmetics brand that does not need any introduction. I have loved this brand since I went to a school trip in middle school many years ago and over these years I have tried out a wide range of their offerings.

But in this post I’ll be covering two products that I have loved and I finally managed to snatch them up some time ago.

 

Wiccy Magic Muscles Massage Bar

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This was the first product I ever tried from Lush and it is a product that is difficult to get your hand on from the net store, it usually is always sold out and the shipping cost is high.

But I did manage to snatch it up some time ago and let me tell you, I forgot how much I loved this product.

I know that not everyone will like the scent this has. It is a very strong mix of cinnamon and menthol that is reminiscent of tiger balm but with a sweeter undertone. Personally I absolutely love it and if I had the skills I’d try to recreate it as a perfume oil.

It is a lovely massage bar for the days when I have muscle pains. First it feels very cooling but it then starts to warm up a bit and helps relaxing the muscles.

I love the consistency of this massage bar, it is soft but it does not disappear immediately on skin but it is also not what I would call greasy either. It does a nice job at moisturizing the skin.

Personally I love to use it after a nice bath/shower then lather this in my hands before applying it. This is of course before going to bed with multiple layers of blankets on top.

But is it me or has this massage bar become more expensive and smaller over the years?

Well this is a rediscovered love and I’ll see if I manage to snatch it up again someday.

 

New Shampoo Bar

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Offciial pic from Lush.

As some of you might have guessed, I am a sucker for anything cinnamon.

This is a solid shampoo bar that is supposed to keep dandruff away, ensure good scalp health and keep hair from becoming oily.

Among the ingredients are peppermint oil, nettle extract, cinnamon leaf oil, rosemary oil, bay oil and clove bud oil. All of these oils and extracts are good for scalp and oily hair to my knowledge.

The last time I had this I had extremely oily hair and my scalp was riddled with psoriasis, which meant that for me a lot of the shampoos created to combat oily hair were very harsh to my scalp and I would sometimes get sores caused by the irritation.

This shampoo bar managed to keep my scalp free from psoriasis, got rid of the oils and my hair became more balanced. This shampoo bar worked miracles for my hair and its effect has lasted through the years.

That’s why I did not rebuy it again as I managed to be capable of using other shampoos since my hair and scalp got balanced.

But I rebought this some time ago to see what I thought of it now.

This shampoo is still great but I find myself using this only when I’m trying to remove styling products from my hair as it is a shampoo that is effective at removing such products. But I’m not capable of using it as an everyday shampoo as I feel it is a bit harsh for my taste.

This might have more to do with me bleaching my hair and let me be honest, no matter how healthy you hair is or how careful you are with bleaching your hair, you are still damaging you hair and weakening it and it will have a tendency to become more brittle.

But I still find myself loving this shampoo as it is super effective and my scalp absolutely adores it.

 

Sugarpill: Kim Chi Liquid Lip Color

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This is the liquid lipstick released in collaberation with Kim Chi, participant on Rupaul’s drag race in season eight.

I have to say that I am a huge fan of Kim Chi, I absolutely adored her on the show and I admire her creativity.

 

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Official swatch from Sugarpill.

Official description:

Matte lavender mauve with a subtle, unique blend of transparent aqua and violet sparkles that twinkle brighter as the formula sets! Our creamy, mousse-like formula never feels dry on your lips. Donut scented!

Created by Kim Chi, Chicago-based drag queen and live-action anime character! http://www.kimchithedragqueen.com

Net Wt. 6 grams / .21 oz.

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Ingredients list.

My opinion:

I have been looking for something like this for a while, a lip product with a gorgeous lavender colour that still features something extra.

One thing I have to say about Sugarpill’s liquid lipsticks is that I see that the brand creates them within a formula based finish. This one does have a similar finish as Trinket, only difference is that the glitter in Kim Chi is a lot more subtle.

The doughnut scent is not horrible but I don’t love it either as I am sensitive to sweet scents. It is a lot more comfortable than the creamsicle scent that Trinket has though.

The shade is really lovely and far from the usual muted lavenders out on the market, don’t misunderstand me this is still a somewhat “soft” shade but it’s not as “watered” down as lavender coloured lip products usually are.

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I also get comments from people that my lips look fuller when I’m wearing this. I’m not sure if I agree but I do love how this looks on me.

But I have to say that compared to the other liquid lipsticks I own from Sugarpill, I found this one to be a lot more drying and it even sometimes crumble when I’m wearing it occasionally. It makes me not reach for Kim Chi as often as I’d want to even though it is a gorgeous shade.

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The packaging is the same as the others with the doe-foot applicator as well.

I love the packaging Sugarpill have for their liquid lipsticks and their formulas.

If you haven’t read me reviewing my other products from Sugarpill, here’s the link Sugarpill collection.

 

Have you tried this?

What do you think about Sugarpill as a brand?

 

H&M: Nail polish

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Cinnamon Spark, Imaginarium, Space Race and Toprock.

A couple of months ago I started to want to paint my nails again.

It was two years since the last time I painted my nails regularly and threw out my last polishes. I’m not sure why but I just could not be bothered anymore and besides that I always hated the smell of both the nail polish and remover.

I started to find my old favourites again and I have reviewed some of them.

But some time ago I went to my local H&M and I found myself mesmerised by their selection of nail polishes and the price tag.

They were also hailed by a well-known norwegian beauty magazine, who is usually very biased in favour of luxury brands, which in itself is such a rarity that I wanted to try them out just based on that alone.

I also like the new packaging, it’s not extremely high fashion but in my opinion it does not matter when it feels sturdy and the shade name is on the bottle itself. It is elegantly simple.

The polishes contains 8 ml of product which is not bad at all and I do find myself liking the brush which makes it easy to coat the nail in one swipe.

But how do these stand up?

Disclaimer: My swatch pictures are not perfect, I have done my best using two different cameras and taking pictures at different times of the day. I am not entirely happy but I really do hope they showcase the shades with a certain accuracy.

 

Space Race

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It was very difficult to capture the holographic effect correctly.

Do you remember the holographic craze some years ago? Everything from nails, lips, eyes and various clothing featured this effect and it was everywhere before it died out (at least from the mainstream)

It has lately re-emerged but in a very different light and “texture” than earlier. This nail polish however reminds me of the earlier incarnation of this trend, it does look eerily similar to a nail polish I owned around 2012-2013.

It is a silvery holographic nail polish that goes on fairly opaque with the first layer, it also dries down quite fast and the surface of the coat is a little bit texturised compared to other nail polishes. I like the fact that this one dries down so quick compared to most other polishes on the market.

I like this one quite a lot but a huge minus is the fact that this polish does start to chip already the next day, even with two coats it is not long-lasting at all. It is gorgeous but I have never experienced a polish that already starts to crack the next day.

With one coat however it starts to fade already after five hours, which is a strange effect to say the least since it looks like it is the pigments only that goes away, not the polish itself.

But I do actually like this one despite that huge flaw and I will perhaps even buy it another time.

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Imaginarium

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This is one of the most unique nail polishes I’ve ever seen or used, the shade is a colour shift between green and purple with an added metallic brilliance. On the nails it can in some lighting conditions look like it is a tarnished silver shade.

One thing is important to note with this one and that is that it does require two coats in order for it to be a bit more opaque, with only one coat this polish falls short and frankly looks more like a child’s nail polish and, as is the case with Space Race, it will start to fade after a few hours.

But it is a little bit on the sheer side no matter what and that is very visible in the pictures I’ve taken here. But I personally don’t mind it that much.

With two coats on the other hand this one is brilliant but also long-lasting aswell as non-chipping.

 

 

Cinnamon Spark

This one has a similar finish to Imaginarium but it features more of an iridescence and not the metallic finish that Imaginarium has.

Cinnamon Spark is a gorgeous shade with a teal iridescence on a red-brown background.

Compared to the other two in this post, this is a much more transparent shade and is also one that takes a long time to dry completely down. It requires two to three coats to become somewhat opaque and combined with the long dry down time, it leaves a little bit left to be desired for me but I enjoy this shade.

I find it beautiful and it is also the most long-lasting of all four.

It is really unique but not perfect.

 

Toprock

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This is a pale turquoise with a slight lilac iridescence. It is a very “glowing” shade  which I’m not sure looks good on me. In the bottle it looks great but on my nails I think it looks extremely cheap on me and that lilac iridescence is almost gone. It might have looked better if I were a little bit more tan.

The wear time is among the better ones of the H&M nail polishes but by god the dry time was long. It took forever for each coat to completely dry and as with the rest of this line this nail polish start to chip quite quickly and does not last long enough in order to excuse the long dry down time.

This might sound quite contradictory when compared to my review of the other nail polishes in this post, but where I can tolerate some of the other polishes in this line because of their shade but this one does not look good on me+long dry time and not being long-lasting at all.

 

Summary

Overall I’m not sure if I can give these a super high-grade.

I feel quite disappointed with the inconsistencies of the formula, of course it is normal for variations in different shades but I think that when I buy five different shades and they vary this much just in formula? That’s more than just disappointing and makes for a less than stellar experience.

I love the shades and the variety that H&M has to offer but such a lackluster formula makes me wary of buying more of these. I can buy from other brands and while they also can differentiate a bit between shades, I have never experienced something like this before with any nail polish line.

 

Have you tried any of these?

What do you think?

 

 

 

The Body Shop: Lip and Cheek Velvet Stick #Universal Poppy

This product to me is like a remnant of the chubby stick trend that was everywhere a couple of years ago. I don’t know about you but I was never a huge fan of the trend and I’m happy of its declination in popularity even though they sometimes pop up occasionally.

Which is why its strange that I like this product so much that I’ve gone through three of these in two years.

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Packaging

The packaging is made of black but sturdy plastic. It feels a little bit heavier than what you might initially expect.

I really like that they have used the Poppy flower in the logo, its elegant and also gives this product an identity.

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This contains 4 grams of product.

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Formula

This is where this product really stands out since I love anything with a velvety texture when it comes to makeup.

What i love about this product is that it has that lovely matte velvety finish that evens out the texture of my lips, making them look fuller and healthier with the added bonus of not drying my lips out as much as regular mattes do.

Thanks to this, it keeps this PH product from falling into the tacky and cheap connotation these products have garnered in people’s consciousness.

I also love the scent this has, which is honestly a little bit difficult for me to pin down but I would describe it as being smoky with a hint of spices.

 

Colour

In the tube it looks like a purplish black but when you first apply this it gives your lips a grayish cast, but after a few seconds the PH effect starts to work and it changes into a lovely dark pink with a strong undertone of purple.

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I have not tried this product on my cheeks as I feel this shade, no matter how much I blended it out, would not look good on me+since it has a staining effect it scares me from using this product on my cheeks.

I also don’t think it would work well combined with foundations or other base products.

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When first applied.

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After a minute.

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How it looks in daylight.

 

Wear

I love this products wear time. It lasts longer than most lip products and its partly because it also tint your lips the longer you have it on.

At most I can get a five-six hour wear with the actual product but the stain it leaves can last the day after.

 

Conclusion

This particular shade might not be to everyone’s taste but there are other shades in this range that might be more tempting.

If you like a nice velvet texture, non drying formula and lovely colour, easy on the go product then this might become a nice addition in your makeup collection.

I hope this shade never gets discontinued.

 

Isadora Summer Collection 2017 – Blue Bliss

IsaDora: isadora; make-up; smink; cosmetic; kosmetik

Official picture from Isadora.

I just managed to snatch up some products from the new collection from Isadora.

This collection is in my opinion a nice fresh breath of air from Isadora . The last two-three years have been dominated by mauve, peach, pinks and nude shades, this is not necessarily a bad thing in my opinion when it is accompanied with a higher quality and innovative products but I have been missing some bright colours on other things than just nail polish.

I have to say that I love the colours making up this collection. Blue is always gorgeous whether you have blue, green or brown eyes you just need to find out which shades suits you the best and this collection has a great selection of blue so you are bound to find something to make your eyes sparkle.

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Official picture from Isadora. I just love this picture so I had to have it in this post since it does give a nice presentation of this collection.

That the lip products feature shades with hints of orange in them is yet another great idea, they are meant to be sheer and give a slight gloss to the lips and combined with blue shades in the eye look it creates a nice balance. Remember blue and orange are complimentary colours.

This collection is made up by four lip balms with a slight hint of colour, two coloured mascaras, three nail polishes, one blush and five coloured pencils.

Personally speaking I like it when brands don’t feel the need to push out new products but rather takes an existing product with a lovely formula and extends that line with new colours or other variations.

I bought two products from this collection.

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Official picture from Isadora showcasing some of this collections offerings.

 

Twist-Up Lip Balm #80 Sheer Melon

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Description from Isadora:

Isadora Twist-Up Lip Balm protects and treats your lips with nourishing natural oils and with SPF15 (UVA/UVB). 50% of the formula is made up of natural oils such as sunflower oil, jojoba oil, pomegranate extract and camelina oil. Twist-Up Lip Balm is flavoured with raspberry aroma and is clinically tested and contains no perfume. Contains ca 15 gram of product.

The first thing of notice for me is the nice packaging. I like it when packaging feels sturdy and when lip products have the shade represented in the packaging, this lip balm has the cap representing the shade. I like it since it feels nice in my hand and the shape of the lip balm itself make sit easy to apply since it has a dome shape at the tip.

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The formula is very nice and long-lasting for a lip balm, I am not shocked by this as I am quite familiar with a lot of the oils this is formulated with. It does not feel greasy on my lips as it sinks nicely in and does what Isadora claims its supposed to: nourish and treat.

I love the fact that this has a nice SPF with both UVA and UVB protection. It was much more common many years ago but in later years I’ve seen a decline in lip balms which offers protection against the sun. I don’t like that since lips are an area with quite sensitive skin and I feel it is important that people understand that and have the possibility to protect it.

The light tint this has is a very refreshing orange, it gives my lips a very healthy look thanks to the tint but also the slight glossiness this has. Sheer melon is the name of the shade I picked up and it perfectly describes the colour.

All in all this is a wonderful product and I might buy this in other shades. I am extremely picky when it comes to lip balms but this to me passed the test and left my lips feeling wonderfully hydrated and healthy.

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Grand Volume Lash Color # 142 Aquatic

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Description from Isadora:

Get fantastic volume and length combined with new eye-catching colours.

Use on all lashes for a dramatic and cool effect, or only on your bottom lashes or just the tips of your lashes for a hint of colour.

  • Super volume effect.
  • Flexible formula that let’s you build up volume
  • The specially designed wand lifts the lashes from root to tip and distribute the mascara evenly.
  • Defines and separates.
  • Lasts all day
  • Contains 9 ml of product.
  • Clinically tested and formulated without fragrance.

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Packaging

This product is a colour variation of Grand Volume Lash Styler and they both feature the same wand but with one diference in packaging.

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Grand Volume Lash Styler. Just to showcase difference in packaging.

That being that the Grand Volume Lash Color features an “open window” to the contents inside, I can understand why as this makes it easy to differentiate the versions available apart.

The shape of the packaging is the same otherwise, with gold accents and with a heavy sturdy feel to it. Some might find the packaging too clunky but I actually find myself liking it especially the tapered end where the wand is attached, I find it easier to control the wand since it helps me have a better grip.

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Ingredients list.

Shade

I love this shade!

It is the most beautiful bright royal blue which pulls out more of the grey tones in my eyes. It really makes my eyes pop and give them a “cooler” tone and making them look brighter.

I believe this shade will look good on most people since royal blue has a tendency to go along with most complexions.

The pictures below is just the mascara and no eyeshadow or eyeshadow.

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The wand

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This mascara features a rubber wand with bristles placed at the sides of the wand.

On one side the bristles are equal height and on the other side the bristles are shorter in the middle.

I like it since I feel that it makes it easier to sculpt my lashes. In my opinion you get a lot of freedom with this wand to separate lashes while adding length and volume, I also noticed that it is easy to untangle lashes with this wand if you make a mistake.

One con is that since I have deep-set eyes this wand is a bit big and can, if I’m not careful enough, smear a bit on my eyelids but this is again due to me having deep set eyes.

Other people might not have to be as careful but I’m giving a heads-up.

 

Formula

The formula of this mascara is very wet but smooth at the same time.

Combined with the wand it works wonders for my lashes as I can go over my lashes with the wand without it clumping or drying too quickly, so I can sculpt as I go over them.

This formula also does not flake and it does last well throughout the day, keeping both volume, length and curl in place.

 

Verdict

I love this product.

It gives me length but with the added volume it keeps my lashes from looking “thin” but full.

This is what I always look for in my mascara since I feel that any mascara that only gives length has a tendency to look very weird. On the other hand volume mascaras has a tendency to make my lashes look too thick and stubby+clumpy.

This mascara on the other hands gives the best of both worlds and with the bonus of making it easy to sculpt my lashes.

I might be willing to buy the regular black version of this.

 

Conclusion

I feel that this is one of those collections that features products that’s going to suit most complexions. You are essentially bound to find something that’s going to look lovely on you.

It is a well-rounded collection in my opinion and I hope Isadora continues giving out smaller collections like this one.

 

Geek Chic Cosmetics: Solid Scents

I bought four of these and as the name suggests they are solid and the company’s site states on their site, they differ from their liquid “sprites” with their warmer drydown, more subtle scent and longer wear.

Solid perfumes are something that I’ve been trying to get my hands on lately as I remember them being popular way back ago. They are generally much gentler to skin than alcohol based scents and also much economical in the long run.

Unfortunately they are difficult to come by but I’d really wish this type of perfume became normalised and common.

These come in a practical twist up tube containing net.wt  .07 oz and the price at the website is 3.49.

But how do these hold up?

 

Les femmes tragiques: Queen of shades

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Description: Queen of Shades is a lush mixture of juicy jewels of pomegranate and sweet pearls of acai berry on a bed of sweet, fresh-cut roses, just opening their blossoms. Queen of Shades is a dark yet sweet floral fit for a queen.

Top notes: Fresh-cut roses
Middle notes: Fresh, juicy acai berry
Base notesTiny jewels of pomegranate

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Well I do love the background story as Persephone is one of my favourite greek goddesses but this disappointed me.

The notes and the description made this seem like a “fresh” scent with some sweetness but what I got was instead an artificial candy smell that gave me a severe headache in under fifteen minutes.

Unfortunately for me I could not go home until three hours later and even when I did my best to wash it away, what happened was that it turned into pure sugar and I probably had to wash it off three times more to get the scent away.

I really wanted to like this but it is too sweet and cheap, and the so-called fresh roses are rotting and that’s the only thing “dark” about this scent.

Really disappointed and I believe there are few people who would like it.

 

Badasses of fiction: Executioner

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Description: Executioner is very rich, and it.. well, it just smells like you’d imagine dark red would smell. Like a Victorian parlor, something ancient yet full of life.

Top notes: Deep, dark oakmoss and cool greens
Middle notes: Musk and gentle florals
Base notes: Gourmand of currant and sweet wine

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This one I was really excited for as the notes made this seem like a darker gourmand with some tartness to it.

On the first swipe of this the cool greens, which I believe is mint, are the dominant notes alongside with what I believe is the oakmoss and musk. It’s not bad but it is a scent I would call musty.

After awhile the top notes disappear and I’m left with the most powdery scent I’ve ever come across. It does become a little bit overbearing as it also smells “old” on me.

It is among the better ones of these but I feel that this scent is what i consider an old woman’s scent.

I won’t slam it completely though as I believe there will be some people who this would just smell amazing on, but I am not one of them.

I love the green notes in this though.

 

Badasses of fiction: Crazy loves company

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Description: Crazy Loves Company has an aura of warm amber and soft cocoa, but cotton candy and kettle corn come through clearly and red velvet cake rounds the whole thing out.

Top notes: Red Velvet Cake and sugary cotton candy
Middle notes:
Kettle corn and funnel cake
Base notes:
Amber, musks, and cocoa

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This I’ll admit was only bought because Harley Quinn is one of my favourite fictional characters of all time. I did not expect to like this at all since all the notes scream cloyingly sweet but surprisingly enough I find this one quite comfortable to wear.

Don’t misunderstand me this is quite a sweet scent but I still find it likeable for what it is. I believe it is the hint of a salty note that do make this in my opinion a wearable scent and I’m fond of amber no matter what.

It is very lovely and I’m pleasantly surprised since I thought I would hate this one.

I find this scent to be very rounded and whole bodied compared to most sweet candy scents I’ve tried.

 

Badasses of fiction: Quid Pro Quo

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Description: Quid Pro Quo just smells like high society. Like an Italian bakery in a library. It’s basically a gourmet of class.

Top notes: Dry, heady merlot mixed with sweet milk
Middle notes: Fresh baked baguette and crisp, fresh parchment/papyrus
Base notes: Warm vanilla and cool stone

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This one I have a little bit of mixed feelings about.

Straight out of the tube, the scent reminds me of a lip balm I used when I was a child and its weirdly nostalgic.

It is a comfortable scent with warm notes and something cold lurking beneath. It certainly does have some gourmandy notes but they are not the stereotypically sweet notes that people associate with that fragrance group. These are very warm and rounded with a hint of tartness about them.

But the scent has also something cold about it which I believe is the notes that are refered to as cool stone and fresh parchment/papyrus. The last one also gives a drier feel to this fragrance which is welcome since it does not end up being powdery.

But too me this still falls behind a bit.

It ends up to me as a below average scent since it does smell like it could have been “blended” better if you get what i mean.

But in the end it is comfortable to me and very nostalgic, I enjoy wearing this at night when the temperature runs low.

 

Conclusion

I did not expect these to be super complex fragrances as they are extremely cheap.

My view on perfumes is that they don’t need to be “advanced” or complex in order to be good. Even perfumes with only two notes can still be better than most of what you can buy over the counter from designer brands.

But these do not cut that mark for me.

Yes I do actually like two of these, but I rarely reach for them and for me that is a clear sign that I won’t buy more of these or try out the other scents in the line.

To me these scents seem like the work of someone mixing perfumes for the first time or someone using low quality fragrance oils.

Again I did not expect the highest quality or craftmanship due to the price so I’m not slamming neither the company or the person crafting these scents. This is entirely on me as I knew what I possibly would get but I wanted to try them out still.

I have to say that I LOVE the formula itself.

It is quite non – greasy and it does not leave a residue which is a great thing with these solid perfumes. The company deserves all the praise for that as this is something a lot of people experience with solid perfumes.

 

 

Isadora: Gel Nail Lacquer

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Official pic from Isadora.

This is among my favourite products from Isadora.

These nail polishes feature a gel nail formula that when used with the gel nail lacquer top coat, it is not hardened by a UV-lamp but with either natural or indoor light.

It is a hypo-allergenic formula with non-irritating ingredients according to Isadora and also supposedly easy to remove but also to stay perfect for at least a week, with no flaking or dimming of shine.

In this review I’m using 264 Rebel Red and 210 Top Coat.

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Instructions

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  • Apply two coats of gel nail lacquer of your chosen shade. Let each coat dry in between and when you have applied two coats let it dry for three minutes.
  • Apply one coat of gel nail lacquer top coat and let it dry completely. It is important to use this top coat since it is in combination with it and gel nail lacquer that creates the gel effect and keeps the nail polish from flaking.

 

How does it measure up?

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The shade I’m using is one of my favourite shades of all time, a deepened red with both blue and pink undertones, it is a perfectly vampy shade and I’m not someone to care if it falls under “autumn/winter” shade in other people’s mind.

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The claim about seven days shine and no flaking is not always true though. It really depends on your routine entirely as I’ve found this to not last long when I’ve had a lot of chores/work to do, especially not if it involved any kind of water.

At most I’ve had this last five days, which in my point of view is not bad at all when it comes to a nail polish but if you are looking for something that will last longer than that, then I would suggest to you to be on the look out for something else.

It is however easy to remove with nail polish remover and I do like this nail polish since I find that this has less fumes than most other nail polishes, something that has been keeping me from applying nail polishes as often as I used to.

The shine is also gorgeous and another thing is that Isadora’s nail polishes in my opinion comes with the best brushes, they are square in shape and make it easy to apply an even coat, which is something to note about all nail polishes from Isadora is that they are very opaque and can have a tendency to go on too thick. This is luckily prevented by the brush.

 

I will recommend this but with a disclaimer about it not being as long-lasting as Isadora claims.