We loved the stick application because it allows for a more targeted approach and banishes spillage. That said, have a think about applying with a brush because it isn't overly hygienic to put the stick straight on your skin each day. Another thing to note, keep this primer away from overly dry areas as it can cause a bit of build up. It applies clear and dewy, but sets with a matte, dry-looking finish. Be sure to let it settle in and dry before applying your foundation. We finished with a setting powder and 15 hours later (yes, we work that hard!), our foundation still looked fresh. Pretty impressive.
It gives skin a more tightened and plump look, and if you think about the effects of an actual bee sting — it makes complete sense. Rather than causing pain, though, this facial moisturiser administers tiny amounts of purified bee venom which tricks the skin into thinking it's been affected by the melittin — the toxin in a bee's sting.
So what did we think? It didn't tingle at all and there wasn't any pain so no need to worry about that. However, if you are allergic to bee stings do not use this moisturiser. It could cause a reaction! The consistency is thick so it feels super luxe and hydrating. The brand's Advanced Moisturiser Complex is four times more hydrating than hyaluronic acid — and you know how much we love that.
The fragrance industry sees so many new launches every season with plenty of bottles being discontinued, so celebrating the 10th anniversary of Narciso Rodriguez For Her ($125) is a big deal. As a longtime fan of this soft, sensual scent, it's easy to forget just how much this was a pioneering fragrance back in 2003. From it's black opaque bottle to the key note of musk, by description it sounds like men's cologne, but the designer himself was keen on pushing forward with all of his unconventional ideas for his first-ever women's perfume. His original vision paid off, and it has garnered quite the cult following. The blend of musks mixed with floral notes like orange blossom, osmanthus, and rose make this a warm, feminine scent that is sure to stand the test of time.
Brooklyn Beach Hair Spray is made with rosewater and jasmine, providing a delicious scent that's both floral and woodsy. This is one beach spray you'll want to wear all year round. The only thing that will give away this spray's Brooklyn roots is the healthy dose of volume you'll be sporting.
This product has saved my skin. After going off the pill earlier this year, my skin went crazy — and by crazy I mean painful hormonal breakouts, dry areas and just generally dull. It really started to get me down not least because I am a beauty editor, but because I'm so good with my skincare routine. I also take supplements, eat minimal sugar, drink plenty of water and green tea and sleep at least eight hours a night — so why was my skin being so cruel to me?!
PCA Skin Hydrating Serum ($147.40) landed on my desk a couple of weeks ago and because it's professional grade, I thought I'd give it a go. I've been using it morning and night after cleansing and before moisturising and let me tell you, it has changed my skin (and my life). I no longer have any dry, flakey areas, and my face looks and feels dewy. I've also had very minimal breakouts which is a far cry from last month when I had a series of gigantic pimples on my right cheek (lovely!).
Bella beauty stars: 5/5
Product in a nutshell: A professional grade, super hydrating serum formulated using components of the skin's natural moisturising factor. It's a clinically proven blend that moves through the water channels on the face for ultimate hydration.
Who should use it: Anyone with dull and dry skin. It didn't react badly to my hormonal breakouts either, quite the opposite actually.
Why we love it: Because it changed my skin after only a few days of use and now I want to marry it.
Stockists: 1800 648 851
Yes, sticky tape. It might sound a bit strange, but it's officially my new secret weapon to creating clean, straight stripes on my nails. Using sticky tape is a great alternative if you can't get your hands on a nail pen, and we all have a roll sitting at home (I found mine in with the Christmas wrapping paper). I used colours I had at home: Australis Streak Free Nail Polish in Sweet Pea ($7.95), Utla3 Nail Polish in Sunset Pink (approx $2) and Sally Hansen Mega Shine top coat ($14.95). Other than that, grab your roll of tape, some clean, sharp scissors and a pinch of patience — and let's go!
I don't know about you, but I'm always sceptical when brands update a cult classic that I swear by. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, I say. But in this instance I have to swallow my words because I've found a new Clinique moisturiser that I love even more (something I didn't think was possible) than Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief ($60): Moisture Surge Intense Skin Fortifying Hydrator ($60). I know what you're thinking — I was too — surely they've just changed the name, not the formula, right? Wrong. The newly-released Intense Skin Fortifying Hydrator is a white cream, not a pinky-peachy gel. This is great if you have insanely dry skin like me (or pretty much anyone in Winter) because it's rich and nourishing, but not heavy; because let's face it, who wants to walk around all shiny and greasy-feeling. In fact that's what impressed me most about this product — its ability to sink in and look invisible. Unlike other rich creams it is suitable for wearing during the day (though if you tend to get greasy, only use it at night) because it doesn't leave that sheen that says "Hi, I've just used a really rich, thick moisturiser." It promises long-lasting hydration for 24 hours and it delivers. When you get to the end of the work day your skin still feels soft from the morning moisturiser application and this makes foundation and the rest of your base makeup look so much better because it doesn't cling and get stuck to dry skin, instead it just glides on smoothly. My only slight disappointment is that it smells a bit "science-y" because, as with all Clinique products, it's fragrance-free. Saying that I really should be (and am) happy as it doesn't irritate my sensitive skin but keeps it hydrated!
Coloured hair is the biggest trend since ombré. And now, we're not talking your classic blonde, brunettes and reds. We mean pink, purple, orange, yellow, blue. You name it, we've seen it on a celebrity (Nicole Richie, Lauren Conrad, January Jones and just today, Demi Lovato) or a runway (Manning Cartell, Chanel, Marc Jacobs) in some way, shape or form. Not ones to miss out, but also not really wanting to sacrifice our worked-hard-for perfect colour, associate editor Alison and I did the next best thing and reached for the temporary hair dye. The new gen powder type that is that promises to be easy-to-apply, wash out and give you the ability to switch up your style from night to night. See how we got on.
I have a love/hate relationship with lip gloss. Admittedly it's because I'm a little (read: a lot) picky but really, is it too much to ask for a non-sticky, non-gloopy gloss that isn't so shiny it's distracting, yet still looks as though you're wearing something and is the same colour that it looks in the tube? Sometimes it seems, it is. Or it was, I should say. Because I've finally found a gloss (a nude one at that, the holy grail of glosses) that ticks all of my boxes. Estée Lauder Pure Color High Gloss in Bare Glow ($40) is lightweight and non-sticky enough that your lips don't stick together when you're wearing it. It's got a sheen to it so you feel as though you're wearing something but it's subtle enough to wear in the office and everyday and it's got good staying power for a gloss, if anything it looks better the sheerer it gets. What I really like too, especially in Winter, is that it feels moisturising, not drying at all. Take a look at what it's like on.