Sunday 18 January 2015

The perfect 10?

Today we're having a look at days 10 through 20. A couple of cult items crop up here!

As you can probably tell by now, Lancome feature pretty heavily in this advent calendar, day 10 was no exception.

 L'Absolu Rouge 06 Rose nude.

This is a beautiful deep nude shade. I say deep, but I am a spectacularly pale individual so this may prove a more natural shade on others than myself. There is definitely a strong pink hue that comes through so it's lovely to brighten the lips on a day when you're feeling less than perky without going too over the top. The formula is very moisturising, and even the scent (my big Lancome pet hate) does't turn me off on this one, personally it reminds me of parma violets. Yummy.

Day 11 decided to give me a treat for the eyes.

Lancome Hypnose Drama in excessive black.

I found my ultimate Mascara a few years ago in MaxFactor false lash effect fusion, I've tried others since then but I've always gone back to it as nothing comes close to it. I'm sorry to say that I won't be changing my mind anytime soon. There was nothing wrong with this mascara, it just didn't blow me away. I did like the s-shaped brush as I felt this added an extra curl to my lashes, it is definitely something you need to adapt to though - prepare for some mascara smudges. For adding length this performed well, thickness on the hand is hit and miss. A single coat looks lovely but I like full on drama (as the name suggests), when I tried to build up the thickness with an extra coat my lashes started to clump and look spidery, not really what I was aiming for. All in all it's a good mascara for a more defined, natural look. For full on glamour and eyelash flutters it just doesn't go the distance in my opinion. 

Another beautiful bottle on day 12!

Emporio Armani Diamonds rose.

With this sparkler containing notes of rose, raspberry and blackcurrant I knew it would be right up my street! Visually you can't not love the pale pink hue of this perfume and diamond shaped bottle. The ingredients would suggest an overly sweet fragrance but that really isn't the case, whilst there are fruity notes they certainly aren't an overpowering factor. It's something I'd definitely wear if I wanted to feel a little more sophisticated but still wanted something that was me. 

Unlucky for some, number 13.

Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate.

This day I was treated to another delightful little serum, this time from Kiehl's. More of an oil treatment than your traditional serum, I was a little cautious as my skin is on the oily side normally. I needn't have worried. This stuff is an absolute dream! It's beautifully light, something I long for in a night time treatment as I don't enjoy going to bed with a heavy layer of products on my skin. My skin isn't shiny when I wake up (the usual view I'm greeted with at 6am), instead it has a beautiful glow and my skin tone has improved greatly since I've been using this. Overall an absolute winner that I'm seriously considering purchasing when this wee bottle runs out. 

A familiar sight behind door 14.

Lancome Hypnose mascara volume sur mesure.

Like I said before, it's hard for a new mascara to step in and mark it's spot in my make up collection these days. Unfortunately Lancome just isn't coming up with the goods. Whilst this wasn't a bad offering, it had one pretty huge flaw in my book which I'll get to in a moment. The brush and application were simple enough, a fairly narrow brush head, but nothing unfamiliar so no risk of random mascara splodges around your eye. This mascara can be layered as the formula doesn't clump (unlike day 11's offering) so it leaves you with wonderful fluttery lashes. On the down side, at least 3 layers are needed to achieve any sort of volumising effect - and we all know I love lashes with mega volume. If you're looking for a fluttery day time look then this mascara could be the one for you. Whilst I would love to keep this mascara for more subtly during the day, unfortunately the formula just isn't one for me. I've spoken may times about my shiny skin, and that doesn't end with my eye area. Just two hours after applying this mascara I got quite a shock when I looked in the mirror! I looked like a member of Kiss the morning after a heavy night. I had heavy black smudges underneath both my eyes, definitely not the result you want from a mascara. Sorry Lancome, but this one is going to have to be set aside.

Maybe things will improve on day 15?

Yves Saint Laurent waterproof eye pencil in black.

A good black eyeliner can be hard to come by, and a waterproof one that stands up to the claim is almost a thing of legend. This liner very nearly cuts the mustard. It glides on beautifully to both the skin and waterline, and truly does live up to the waterproof claim. My only negative point is in regards to colour pay off. If you're looking for a true and dramatic black, this just isn't going to create that for you. I would describe the colour as more of a charcoal grey, still beautifully flattering, but I'm sure there are much darker pencils out there. I think I'll retain this pencil to use as a base for a smokey eye. It's easily blendable and so should be great for creating a grey haze over the lid. The dark grey appearance is also a great alternative to black when lining the waterline, giving a much less severe look, ideal for a touch of drama in the day time. In summary, still a great product just maybe not quite what it is advertised to be. 

We're halfway there, just 5 more to go...

Lancome Genifique Yeux, Light-pearl.

It's time to delve into the world of eye products with this quirky looking little creation. Lancome claims this to be an 'eye-illuminating youth activator', and it certainly feels like magic under the eyes. As the applicator is a metal wand, it's unsurprising that it creates a wonderfully soothing feeling on the skin. The applicator itself sits on a pivot, this is fantastic for the gentle eye area is it moves when you apply too much pressure. Personally, I did see a brightening effect after application, and - miraculously - my eyelids seemed less hooded to normal. These results however did not last, the dreamy eye opening effect wore off within a couple of hour and then i was back to dull, heavy eyes. A great instant pick me up but I've yet to see any long lasting results. 

Here's one we all recognise behind door 17.

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion.

If you're not familiar with this much loved primer from Urban Decay yet, where have you been? Eye shadow primers are one of those things I had always been skeptical about, then I tried this little beauty a few years back. It's truly an item that you have no idea how you lived without once you've tried it, and this particular version is one of the best. This 'potion' is perfect for my greasy eyelids. The neutral shade provides a clean base to apply anything from the simplest day to day look to full blown disco glamour. It makes colours appear brighter and more opaque, prevents creasing and really improves the longevity of your makeup. Now I have this lovely miniature, it's perfect for popping in my 'reduced' sized (I use the word reduced lightly) makeup collection when I go away for a few days.

A milestone number for some, Advent day 18.

Lancome Visionnaire LR 2412 4% - Cx.

Catchy name there Lancome. Technical numbers and figures aside, Lancome explains this to be an advanced skin corrector to improve the appearance of wrinkles, pores and skin texture. Now I'm not really at a point in my life where I can comment on a product's capabilities to reduce wrinkles (and I'm certainly not complaining) but when it comes to the appearance of pores and skin texture I'm all over that. I feel I have quite large and visible pores, particularly on my nose and across my cheeks, so any product claiming to reduce pore size I'm going to jump on. I haven't been using this serum long enough yet to make a full blown conclusion, but so far I'm liking what I'm seeing! The consistency isn't like a normal serum, it's thicker and opaque more like some primers, and applies in a similar fashion too. My skin feels so smooth afterwards, and after a week of use I do think the texture of my skin has improved. Whilst I don't think my pores have decreased in size (I don't think that miracle product even exist unfortunately) they do seem easier to cover, my foundation applies much more smoothly. I'm a big fan of this product, although looking into future purchases it retails at £60! I think I'll have to wait and see on this one if it's something I can't live without when I've made my way through the sample.

Ladies and Gentlemen, day 19 is very special.

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb.

This day I felt super spoilt indeed. Already a fan of this amazing fragrance I was over the moon to have a miniature to pop in my handbag. If you've never sampled Viktor & Rolf fragrances I suggest you pop down to your closest perfume store pronto. It's a wonderful mix of sweet vanilla and floral notes, I'd say it is quite similar to Armani Si if you've sampled that delight. Being an Eau De Parfum, a little really does go a long way and also really lasts throughout the day. I could honestly wear this everyday and not get tired of it, alas, it's not a cheapy so I like to save it for special occasions. 

Last but not least for today, what was hiding behind door number 20?

Lancome Bi-Facil, non oily - sensitive eyes instant cleanser.

Sadly we're not finishing on a positive note. As I've said before, I don't like cleansers that leave a film on my skin. It completely defeats the purpose of a cleanser if it doesn't leave your skin feeling clean. Despite claiming to be 'non oily', I feel Lancome have told a bit of a porky here. Yes, this product does remove makeup but it takes a few too many sweeps to really remove your eye makeup in my opinion. Still not one to push aside my micellar water just yet! 

Have you tried any of these products? How did you find them, perhaps you had a different experience to myself? Let me know in the comments below.



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