Designed to stand up to the zoom, the Max Factor False Lash Epic Mascara brush with Zoom-Action Tip captures and magnified every detail of every lash for an epic lash fan. No lash is left unseen.”

I’m always excited when a new mascara lands on my beauty desk, because who doesn’t want to play with makeup and have gorgeous lashes? This mascara has a unique brush, which makes it all the more exciting.  

How to use: Push the body of the brush deep into the root to capture and magnify every detail of every lash. Then, using both sides of the brush, draw it up through your lashes. Twist the brush tip towards your eyes and with an up-and-down motion diffuse clumps, volumise and zoom in on tiny lashes. Woah. That sounds like a LOT of instruction just to make my lashes pretty.

How do I use it? Pretty much like a regular mascara. I use the main brush to apply the product to my lashes – although I usually end up sticking it in my eye and hurting myself – and then the small spiky end to get my smaller lower lashes. Now before you judge my motor skills, the brush has 4 sets of combs sticking out, and if you misjudge it, you end up whacking it into your eye. The good thing about the brush is that you can really build volume and length up nicely without your lashes looking clumpy.

Looking quite Games of Throney

I love the sleek gold and black packaging. It sets it apart from all the other [insert generic colour here] coloured mascaras out there, and is pretty to look at. 

In terms of staying power, I’m quite impressed. It’s been on for 12 hours and there has been no smudging or flaking.

Do I love it? Not so much, but if you have fine lashes you might want to give it a try.

It has a RRS price of R170 and is available exclusive to Clicks.

If you suffer from puffy under eye skin in the morning, your life is about to get a whole lot better. On the days that I wake up with puffy under eyes, every morning, I know they won’t stay like that for long, thanks to Exuviance’s DePuffing Eye Serum

It claims to help decongest, de-puff and tone the eye area for a rested, youthful appearance with visible results in just 4 weeks.

  • The special triple micro-roller applicator gently massages to stimulate circulation and drainage while delivering a depuffing complex of botanical ingredients.
  • A blend of peptides plus a citrus antioxidant in Eyeliss™ and Actiflow® targets microcirculation and helps strengthen skin, reducing the pooling that can lead to puffiness and bags.
  • NeoGlucosamine® helps build the supportive gel cushion for collagen and elastin, to firm and tone both eyelid and under-eye droopiness over time.
  • Caffeine helps stimulate and invigorate the skin.
  • Chamomile, Green Tea and Cucumber refresh the skin, while special micro-fillers soften and smooth the look of fine lines and crow’s feet for an immediate de-aging boost.
  • Ophthalmologist tested.

How did it do?

First up, it’s such a refreshing product to use. I apply it under my eye area and take it up to the area just below my brow bone in a circular, massaging motion. The little balls work to massage your skin, too. The minute I roll this product on, my eye area feels so moisturised and comforted. I’ve noticed that it lifts the skin on the eyelid making my tired eyes look that much more awake, in spite of how tired I might be. My fine lines also look smoother. 

It layers beautifully with other products and doesn’t roll off or pull of when you apply your foundation. I’ve also used it at 3pm, over my foundation, for a wakeup, and it sinks in beautifully – no sheen or tackiness in sight. It did roll off when I touched it. 

It really does as it says it will – it depuffs and calms my eye area in a few minutes.

The directions say: depress plunger once. Using gentle pressure, roll under each eye from inner corner to outer corner for up to 10 seconds. Repeat under brow bone. Gently smooth in any excess until absorbed. Use twice daily. Can be applied under eye cream or makeup. Initial use: Holding pen with roller ball up, depress plunger several times to start the flow of serum. Just a quick heads up, the first time I used it, I had to push the plunger about 30 times for any product to come out. I thought it was defective, but it just needed some extra care.

Overall, if puffy eyes are getting you, give this worthwhile serum a try. You won’t be sorry.

Available online for R645 here and R735 here. You can go here to contact Genop South Africa directly, to find a stockist near you or email them at skincare@genop.co.za.  

If you’re a regular here, you’ll know that I love eyebrows more than the average person. Have a look about some of my rantings here and here. I’ve talked a lot about how to create fuller brows, how to get the right shape, and which products to use. Now, I get to hang up my hat. My eyebrow hat. That sounds weird, but stay with me.

Because of my adoration of eyebrows, I want them to be perfect. Because of this, I decided to have some microblading done, because perfect eyebrows are time consuming to create every morning. Microblading, for those of you who don’t know, is a is a form of tattoo artistry where pigment is implanted under your skin with a manual handheld tool that has a row of several fine needles to mimic natural hairs in your brows. The blades are, well, micro and after the tiny hair-like cuts have been made in your skin, the colour is deposited by rubbing pigment into them. It sounds sore, but it isn’t. Okay, it is a little.

I had my microblading done by the insanely talented and meticulous Deiana of Posh Nail & Beauty in Illovo. First my eyebrows were cleaned and Deiana mixed the correct colour for my skin tone, and to match my eyebrow colour. Next up, she rubbed some anaesthetic cream onto my brows and covered them with cling wrap to make the experience less painful. I went to Assaggi, the restaurant next door, that serves the MOST delicious penne Bolognese in JHB, with cling wrap on my eyebrows, and did all I could to avert my eyes when strangers stared at me. All in the name of beauty I say.

Once my brows were sufficiently numb, Deiana outlined my dream eyebrows onto my face, and began making the tiniest of cuts to create more ‘hair’.

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Outlining my perfect eyebrows

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How amazing?

Having your skin cut is a bit weird, especially since you hear every scrape and the process is quite painful. Nothing that you can’t handle though. On my pain scale, I’d give it about a 5/10. Mid-process, the anaesthetic wore off and Deiana applied pigment containing anaesthetic to my brows, which was a lifesaving genius, and which made the pain even more tolerable than before. After a few more strokes, it was done. The whole process took around 2 hours. Once done, my eyebrows were sterilized and sealed with a solution. I went home with black geometry on my face. I’m not kidding.

I went to dinner that evening and found that I was extremely self-conscious. I even made this image and sent it to a friend.

IMG_2677 Black geometric eyebrows

Over the next 4 weeks the colour went from too dark, to too light, to just right. The day immediately after the microblading, the colour was even darker, as the blood had dried and the pigment was sitting on my skin and hadn’t yet settled into my skin. This is completely natural though. A week later, my brows looked the lightest, because my skin was healing. In tattoo terms, they call this ‘milk skin’. Two weeks later, my skin started to peel, with skin coming off in flakes made up of superficial colour and dry skin.

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After 4 days 

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After 5 days

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After 6 days

Now, I’m loving life! My eyebrows take less than 30 seconds every morning. I just run L’Oreal’s Brow Artist Plumper over them and I’m good to go. If I really want to be fancy, I take a pencil to them to define them even more, but that doesn’t really happen all that often. If  I want some hold, I just use some clear eyebrow gel.

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After 3 weeks

So, who should consider microblading? If you want your eyebrows to look thicker, more symmetrical and if you’d like more of a defined arch, microblading will enable all your eyebrow dreams to come true. The procedure isn’t a permanent thing, and should last for 2-3 years. I am in love with it and will continue to do it, unless something more natural and beautiful comes along.

For the best microblading and lashes in town, pop into Posh. You can find Posh online here and at Shop 19B, Post Office Centre, Rudd Road, Illovo Johannesburg. You can contact them on (011) 268-0443.

Kell signaturey

Contouring is a little difficult for the average person, so I love it when a product makes it easy for me. With so many products to already consider, I only contour when I’m in the mood. Just about every company is releasing their version of a contour kit, and there are so many to choose from, so I’m going to try make your life a little easier with a review on a few of these contour kits.

Maybelline Master Contour Stick

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When I saw Maybelline’s Master Contour by Face Studio I thought I would make a total mess with the brown side smudging into the white side. I couldn’t have been more wrong. This product is a dream to use! You simply draw your contour on and buff it in et voila! A perfectly contoured face. It has a cream texture and a matte finish. It’s available in Light, Medium and Dark for R170 from Clicks, Dis Chem, Foschini and anywhere else Maybelline is sold. I use the shade Light and it’s a perfect match! I love it. It’s so simple and perfectly coloured. For ease of use, quality and price, I would rate this contouring stick 10/10.

Catrice Contourious Sculpting Powder Palette

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This cheek, contour and highlight palette is perfect for your blush/contour/highlighting needs. This palette is warm-toned (it’s also available in a cool tone) and it didn’t suit my skin tone. I used it on a friend of mine who has a warm skin and it came out really pretty! The texture is easy to apply and blend. The contour shade worked perfectly to help hollow out her cheekbones and give definition, the blush is highly pigmented and a little goes a long way and the highlighter is nice and golden, and gives a soft sheen. Available from Dis-Chem for R89.95.

CATRICE Contourious Highlighting Stick

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The packaging of this highlighter stick makes it great for popping in your handbag, but I’ve used better creamy highlighters. It has a light pearl shimmer but kind of disappeared into nothing on my skin. I felt that the texture wasn’t smooth enough. Available from Dis-Chem in C01 Gentle Glow for R69.95.

CATRICE Contourious Contouring Brush

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The contouring brush is great for applying product on the cheeks but not so much for blending it out. I had to use a different brush for blending. On the plus side, you can use it to contour a smaller area like your nose. R79.95 from Dis-Chem.

REAL TECHNIQUES EXPERT FACE BRUSH

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I’m sure this brush needs no introduction, and it isn’t new by any means, but this is what I use to contour the products reviewed. It has ultra firm and broad bristles to perfectly buff contouring shades into my skin. Available from Takealot or Foschini for between R150-R180.

MII CELESTIAL SKIN SHIMMER IN AURORA

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This shimmer brick of sorts, from new kid on the block, Mii, is so beautiful. It’s not really a contour kit, but it offers lots of colour options in the form of highlighter, bronzer and can even be worn as eye shadow. It adds radiant warmth to cheeks and temples, and blends into a gorgeous glow. The texture is beautifully soft and dreamy, and applies easily. R580 from select salons or you can go here to find a stockist near you.

I hope this has been helpful to you. Here’s to your gorgeous glow!

Kell signaturey

I’ve been lucky to find quite a few mascaras landing on my beauty desk lately. Instead of trying them one by one, I created a ‘to-try’ pile and tested them all out over a two week period. Here are my thoughts …

L’Oreal Butterfly Effect Fibres False Lash Wings Mascara

False Lash Butterfly Wings mascara instantly volumises at the roots and stretches your lashes outwards for a winged eye effect.

M Loreal Butterfly3

This mascara comes in a uniquely shaped metallic silver and royal blue tube. The brush is nifty and reminds me of a butterfly. I don’t find it too easy to use, but once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty cool. Where this mascara really stands out is when it comes to lift. My lashes were lifted from the second I applied it until I rinsed it off that evening (it comes off easily enough with micellar water). Seriously amazing. It did clump my lashes a bit, but I found that if I wait and sort of dry the formula a bit before applying it to my lashes, I get a better, less messy/clumpy result.

M Loreal Butterfly

Did it deliver on its promise? I don’t think it gives a winged out effect, but the formula did stretch my lashes, and the fibres definitely elongated my lashes. Maybe if I applied more out the outer corner, the winged out look would be achieved. I really like this one.

Available from Dischem or Clicks for a RRSP of R185.

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Bourjois volume reveal radiant black mascara

Reveal your lash potential with Bourjois’ NEW Volume Reveal mascara. The built in mirror with x3 zoom reveals every lash whilst the lash catcher brush with gripping bristles ensures all lashes are volumised without exception!

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This mascara separates and defines each lash, making it look like I have a lot of lashes. I love the brush and the formula so much because even on application of the third layer, my lashes are lifted, black, separated and never clumpy. The mascara comes in a black triangle tube with a 3 x zoom mirror on one side. The idea of looking into a small mirror put me off at first, because I can’t be bothered with silly little mirrors, but I kind of changed my mind because the strip of mirror really zooms in on your eyes and is actually quite handy. You can only see the eye area, in sharp detail, which allows you to really focus on the job at hand. It also comes of with a few swipes of micellar water.

M Bourjois volume reveal

Did it deliver on its promise? It left my lashes long and defined and lifted and didn’t flake or smudge. I feel like the brush definitely grabbed and the formula coated every single lash, making them thicker from root to tip. What I especially love about this mascara is that you can achieve a beautiful, natural look or you can build it for more voluminous lashes. Big thumbs up for this one!

Available for R179.95 exclusively at Clicks and online here.
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max factor Velvet volume

Transform your look with velvety, dark, more volumised lashes – your secret to a smouldering smokey eye.

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The first time I tried this mascara, I wasn’t that impressed and I felt like it didn’t really pack a punch. The formula was a little bit dry (which I appreciate because I dislike super wet mascaras), but I felt like I had to really work to get it on my lashes (and then in doing so, got it on my upper eyelid). The first time I used it, it gave me more of a natural look but the second time I just kept on applying and managed to build the volume up quite nicely. It kind of redeemed itself from my first impression, and then I realised that it’s all about HOW you use your products. If you want volume, then build it up. This mascara is easy to remove and comes off with a swipe of micellar water. While nothing major, there was a hint of fallout and I had the tiniest bit of mascara on my lower lash line come evening time. The packaging is a cute, chubby black tube with gold art deco swirls.

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Did it deliver on its promise? It doesn’t give me the volume that I thought it would, but I like the overall effect. I think it’s a great day time, clump-free mascara.

Available for R195.95. from selected Clicks stores country wide and online here.
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Maybelline The falsies push up drama

Mascara that will take your lashes to the heights of big drama. Lift and look-at-me volume for days.”

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While the formula isn’t super wet, it does contain fibres and the brush holds a lot of product. Because of the stickiness, my lashes went from bare to clumped in an instant and I had to use a spoolie to brush through my lashes to separate them. It’s not the easiest to apply to the top lashes, and quite difficult to apply to lower lashes, because of clumping and smudging. In terms of fallout, there was none in a 12 hour period. I’m kinda on the fence with this mascara. The first time I used it, my lashes looked a bit too clumpy for my liking up close but were actually ample and voluminous a bit further away from the mirror. The second and third time I used it my lashes clumped up majorly and I had to use a tweezers to painstakingly separate them (because tweezers were all I had!). I like the way my lashes look with this mascara on them but it’s a fight to get them to look that way. The packaging is a real winner! It’s a gorgeous metallic red and pink tube that clicks once the mascara is closed. I love that because sometimes you don’t close your mascara properly and then it dries out.

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Did it deliver on its promise? This mascara definitely gave me lots of volume and it made my lashes super black, so I guess that’s the drama part.

Available from Dischem or Clicks for a RRSP of R149.95.

I hope this was helpful for you!

o

Kell signaturey