Sunday, 11 November 2018

Lancôme X Proenza Schouler Fall Collection 2018

Colourful packaging, unique shades and beautiful formulas, that sums up the new Lancôme designer collaboration with Proenza Schouler for me. I've had the chance to put some goodies from this fall collection to the test for you, so let's look at the products:

The limited edition collection contains several different shades, a cushion and palettes too, however, I'm going to introduce you to a kajal, three lip products and a nail polish today. As you can see, the lip products don't exactly look like nudes, so we're kind of out of my comfort zone here, but let's just roll with it... 

The purple Matte Shaker is called Round Purple. I was intrigued to try the matte formula for a while so I was pretty excited about this one. Compared to the normal Juicy Shakers, the matte formula is slightly dryer and not nourishing in the way the other Juicy Shakers are but it's still comfortable to wear.  The Juicy Shakers don't last on my lips very long, you need to reapply them after eating but they seem to have some sort of stain effect too, a bit of the colour always stays on the lips and it gets stronger when you reapply the product. On me, the matte formula doesn't look entirely matte, something I personally like. Despite the name, this shade isn't purple on the lips because it is very sheer, it just gives your lips a nice berry pink tone. Not the right product if you're looking for a bold purple lipstick but a great and wearable everyday colour. 

Matte Shaker in Round Purple
Space Grey
The nail polish is easy to apply and looks very even and gel like. I didn't apply a top coat and it still lasted without chipping for five days, which I find quite impressive. Space Grey is a smoky grey with a hint of purple. A discreet shade with a bit of something special. I haven't tried any other Lancôme nail polishes but I'm happy with the quality of this one so I might need to get my hands on some other shades. 

Abstract Burgundy

Abstract Burgundy - Pure Brown Pencil + Gloss
Abstract Burgundy - two coats
I've also tried the L'absolu Rouge Sheer Chroma lipstick in Abstract Burgundy. The nearly black shade is extremely sheer on the lips, so it actually looks like a bright purple in the swatch but a sheer dark cherry tone on my lips. It isn't a shade to apply when you're in a hurry because you still have to apply it rather precisely, a lip liner would help I guess. The formula feels creamy and light on the lips, kind of like a lip balm. To get the dark cherry tone I applied two or even three coats of the product but I honestly prefer it after pressing my lips onto a tissue because then, you're left with a gorgeous autumnal berry tone on your lips which will last even during a meal. 

Lip Kajal Duo Chroma in Pure Brown

Lip Kajal Duo Chroma in Pure Brown
The two sided Lip Kajal Duo Chroma in pure brown looks absolutely amazing! The pencil shaped lipcolour can be used as a lip liner and as a base shade at the same time and the liner really stays where it's supposed to. Adding the gloss on top, the combination looks bold and sophisticated, I love it! Sadly, after having dinner, only the lip liner was visible and that's definitely not a good look. Besides needing a touch up after eating, this is a product I will use often as the formula feels great on the lips and not drying at all and the shade is beautiful! 

Ombre Hypnôse Kajal Chroma in Minimal Brown

When I first looked at the Ombre Hypnôse Kajal Chroma in minimal brown I wasn't sure if the light brown shade would look good on my lids as my lashes are naturally black and black or dark grey just makes more sense to me. To my surprise, I really like it now because it looks softer than black eyeliner. I usually don't wear eyeliner on an everyday basis, it makes my eye make-up look very intense and that seems like too much to go to work. This kajal feels more wearable to me. It is easy to smudge to get an even softer look and it sets after a little while. However, it does transfer to the crease, so you might need to check on it and correct it more than once during the day. 

In my opinion, Lancôme did a great job with this collection. The shades are special but still wearable and the formulas are amazing! I've checked stores and online and the collection is still available, however, the palettes might be hard to find already. The lip products cost around CHF 30 to CHF 40, the kajal CHF 32 and the nail polishes are available for CHF 24. 

Have a great day!

XX Cheryl

* press samples, all opinions are my own. 

Saturday, 27 October 2018

Bioré Free Your Pores with Baking Soda

Hi there, I hope you are well! 
Recently, my skin hasn't looked its best. I guess it's due to a great combination of too much sugar, changing my skincare routine often and stress. So it's a good time to talk about what I use to make my skin look better again. Something that helps greatly for me is the Dermalogica Biolumin-C Serum but in my opinion, besides taking good care of what goes into your body, the most important part is to make sure my skin is cleansed properly. A while ago I received two products from Bioré's free your pores line* to put to the test and I thought this is the best time to do that. I chose the Baking Soda Cleansing Foam for dry-combination skin. I also have a gel cleanser for normal to oily skin but that's just too far from my skin type. 

I use the cleanser after removing my makeup. I apply one or two pumps of the foamy product onto my face and massage it using my hands. It has a fresh and light scent. After I've  massaged it for a little while I remove it with warm water. I like that the product makes my skin feel extremely clean without feeling dry, even though it's a foam cleanser. The baking soda in the product has an anti-bacterial effect and cleanses your pores gently, the salicylic acid helps to get rid of spots. It's not a miracle product but in my case, it helped to make my skin look clearer again. 

If you have oily skin, you might want to take a look at the Charcoal Cleanser for a deep cleanse. As I said, I didn't test it myself but I've read good things about it. 

I was new to the brand Bioré but I'm happy using their cleanser. It's gentle and effective and the pump packaging is easy to use. I don't mind the extra step in my skincare routine, a double cleanse is the best way to go if you ask me. The prices don't break the bank either, the cleansers cost around CHF 10, which is a good price for what you get. 

What are your tips and tricks against blemishes? Please share them below, we'd love to know them!

Have a great day!

xx Cheryl

*press samples, all opinions are my own

Sunday, 14 October 2018

Enjoying the Autumn Sunshine with Alessandro Internationals "Wild Berry!" Collection

I'm sitting on my balcony enjoying the beautiful autumn weather while writing this blogpost. It's already October and I have no idea where the last 9 months of this year went, probably has something to do with writing my master thesis but now I feel like every time the weather is nice, I have to sprint outside to enjoy the sunshine as it might be the last sunny day of autumn. I just came back from a walk and the leaves are changing colours to the most beautiful shades of yellow and red. The colours just are the best part of autumn in my opinion and I'm really in the mood for all the gorgeous berry tones. That's why I'm excited that  Alessandro International launched their "Wild Berry" collection to capture this transition from summer to autumn and they did great!

"Wild Berry" or "Summer Berries", as it says on the packaging, includes five nail polishes. Three shiny finishes, one metallic shade and a glitter. The nail polishes are vegan and contain Vitamin C and avocado oil. Alessandro states that the nail polishes last for 7 days when combined with their Gelactic top coat. From my experience in the past with Alessandro nail polishes I know that they usually don't last that long on my nails. Depending on the shade, they started to chip after one day without a top coat, after two or three days with a top coat. The press kit doesn't say that the formula has changed but somehow the new nail polishes last a little longer than usually which is around 2-3 days without a top coat, combining them with a top coat I can wear them for 4 days.

Three shades went straight into my "favourites" nail polish box: Posh&Berry, Cherry at Heart and All Night Long. I've been looking for a perfect nude pink for a while and Posh&Berry hit the mark. It's opaque applying only one coat but I prefer two as it makes the finish look more even. My boyfriends comment on the shade was "your nail colour looks like ham" which sounds gross but to be honest, this might be the most accurate description of this shade. So let's say it's a fleshy nude. Yay. But it's gorgeous! 

Cherry at Heart is a shade which I've seen other companies launching too for this autumn and I've completely fallen in love with it. I wouldn't say it's a cherry tone, to me, cherry just looks either more red or way darker (ok, it does look more cherry toned on the picture than in real life). I'd say it looks more like a dark raspberry. I apply two coats of this to get the perfect finish and I think this might be in my autumn favourites...

If you're into dark shades, I think All Night Long might be your shade. It looks slightly lighter in the packaging but it is a quite dark purple, which I love. You can get the lighter appearance on your nails by only applying one coat but I prefer an opaque look and therefore usually apply two coats. 

The one metallic shade in the collection is Blackberry's Garden, a dark shade which sparkles in a bronzy brown or in purple depending on the light. I'm currently not really into metallic shades but this one looks elegant and seems suitable for an upcoming event where "sparkle" was noted as the dress code. 

Lastly, let's take a look at Raspberry Affairs. It's a clear nail polish with hexagonal glitter parts in light pink, lilac and light blue. To be honest, this is not a shade I would wear because I work full time and it just isn't really appropriate for the office. However, if you're a fan of glitter, I was impressed by how easy it was to remove it. I always find it so annoying to remove glitter nail polishes but this one wasn't a pain to remove at all. 

All in all, I think the shades in this collection are beautiful and it's fun that there are different finishes to the nail polishes. However, I sometimes find the names don't really match the shade but that's just my personal opinion. 

The nail polishes cost CHF 7.50 for 5ml and they're available as Striplac too, for CHF 15.95.

Which one is your favourite nail polish shade for autumn? 

Have a beautiful day!
xx Cheryl

*Press samples, all opinions are my own.

Sunday, 16 September 2018

Bentley - Momentum Unlimited Eau de Toilette for Men

Today, we're venturing a step into the world of men's fragrances. Bentley Fragrances launched a new summer scent for men named Momentum Unlimited*, which is an addition to the already known Momentum line. 

I've had the pleasure to get to know this scent in a Bentley showroom and guess what! A gallant chauffeur with a dreamy Bentley picked me up at the train station to drive me to this showroom. I felt somewhere in between extremely glamorous and totally mortified because I went there straight from work and looked the way someone looks after a full and stressful day at the office. Not glamorous at all. But hey, the car was an absolute delight to sit in, so who cares? Ok, I cared. Because, much to my surprise, there was a photographer waiting in front of the showroom who tried to take a picture of me getting out of the car. Again, sounds glamorous, doesn't look glamorous when it involves me. Luckily, I don't own said picture, so I can spare you the nightmares. But enough of the chitchat, let's talk about Momentum Unlimited.

The fragrance is designed for the global traveller and lover of freedom who thrives on challenges. How does that smell? Bentley Fragrances transported this image into a fresh and light scent. Its fragrance family is aromatic fresh woody. The base is a combination of leather, ambroxan and muscenone, the heart notes combines vetiver, cedarwood and sandalwood essence. With cardamom essence, grapefruit and green apple we have a fresh top note. At first, you mainly smell the light citrus and woody notes but as the scent develops, it gets warmer. I'm a sucker for woody scents so it comes as no surprise that I love Momentum Unlimited and gladly cover my boyfriend in it from head to toe. 

The bottle of Momentum Unlimited is inspired by Bentley's signature knurling and the liquid inside is sky blue. It reminds me of a skyscraper. What I like most about the flacon is that it is very heavy. This makes it feel extremely luxurious. The 100ml bottle costs CHF 94 and is available in Lalique stores, Globus and perfume stores.

Due to the beautifully designed bottle and the gorgeous scent, I guess Momentum Unlimited would make a great gift. What do you think?

If your budget is a little more generous than mine, I can also highly recommend getting a Bentley. The selection is classy, they all just look great and the backseat area feels like a living room. I currently own a bicycle. It's yellow and looks like the Swiss post bus. So that's pretty cool too. 

Have a great day!
xx Cheryl

*press sample, all opinions are honest and my own.

Monday, 10 September 2018

Introducing O'right - Plastic Free Hair Care and a Tree in a Bottle?

Over the last weeks I've had the pleasure to get to know O'right and some of their products. I've never heard of the brand before and it only recently became available in Switzerland. But here it is and I'm glad to be able to introduce you to the brand now. 

What attracted me to the brand is its philosophy. O'right aims to do things differently. And their understanding of "different" means, they're consistently trying to do better and their motto is, "what's good for our environment is good for us, too". That's why the brand name  consists of an "O" to represent everything and our planet and "right" which suggests that everything is in order for a great future. O'right also claims to produce the greenest shampoo in the world. Here's why:

All the products are produced using solar and wind power. Furthermore, they use collected and recycled rain water and the packaging is 100% bio-degradable because it's made of fruit and vegetable and plant waste. The shampoo caps are made of Moso bamboo which releases more oxygen than other plants. What makes me even happier: the bottom part of the bottle contains seeds to plant a tree or a plant - depending on the shampoo. Due to the composition of the packaging, the bottle decomposes in soil and then serves as a fertilizer to help the tree or plant to grow. Amazing, huh? 

With all the issues we face due to our excessive consumption of plastic and production of CO2, I think it's essential that brands start to produce in a more sustainable way. Corporations do have a responsibility towards our environment as production of goods uses a lot of our planets' natural resources. O'right is a great example to show that it is possible to reduce plastic, the use of water and CO2 emissions and still produce practical and pretty packaging, profitably that is, if I may add. 

You see, I'm a huge fan of their philosophy so I really really really want to love their products. Let's see how I got along with them...

I've put three products to the test: The Goji Berry Volumizing Shampoo for fine and lifeless hair, the Recoffee Conditioner for damaged hair and the Anti-Gravity Nature Gel which can be used on all hair types. 

Just some basic info about my hair so you know what I was dealing with ;-) My hair is fine, doesn't have a lot of volume and it's kind of straight but not entirely and the bits that aren't straight are very unruly (fluffy would be a great description, too). Even though I dye my hair on a regular basis, it's neither dry nor damaged. 

The Goji-berry Volumizing shampoo is the first product I tried. It smells pleasant and has a gel-like texture. The bamboo cap comes off easily which is great when your hands are wet but also means that it might leak if you carry the shampoo bottle around in a bag. The shampoo formula is highly concentrated, a little goes a long way. If needed, you can shampoo your hair twice. The first thing I noticed is that my hair felt really clean after using the Goji-berry shampoo. However, it didn't manage to add volume to my hair and the hair felt greasy faster than usually. I still don't know why that is and the contacts at O'right were very helpful to find a reason why. Maybe my hair is just slightly crazy? I talked to Isabelle from isacosmetics blog who tested the products as well and she loved this one. Nevertheless, my hair was extremely easy to comb through even without using a conditioner. 

The second product I tested is the Recoffee Caffeine Conditioner. Recoffee oil is gained from recycled coffee grounds which I find pretty cool. It's rich in antioxidants and protects hair and your scalp from UV-rays. This conditioner is my favourite of the products I tried. Just apply it to towel dry hair and leave it in for about 2-3 minutes. If you're a busy bee like me you might want a quicker way, so here we go: I usually squeeze as much water out of my hair  as possible using my hands, then I apply the conditioner, wash my body with a shower gel aaand I'm ready to rinse the conditioner. Works just fine and the conditioner does the job in that time. My hair was easy to comb and felt stronger after using the Recoffe Conditioner, so that's a winner for me. 

Lastly, I put the Anti-Gravity Nature Gel to the test. This product can be used on towel dry hair before blow drying it. It adds grip and moisture to your hair. I personally didn't enjoy the application of the Anti-Gravity Nature Gel, mainly because it is kind of sticky when you massage it into your hair and I don't like the feeling of that. Obviously, this is necessary in order to add grip to your clean hair and you won't feel the product anymore once your hair is dry. If you want to style your hair after washing it, this might be a good option as it doesn't add hold the way a hairspray would but it still makes it easier to work with your hair and helps to hold the style. 

So that's all I planned to tell you right now. I really wanted to love all the products but it seems like I haven't found my perfect hair care routine with O'right yet. But let's keep trying. The concept is definitely worth it!

If you're wondering about the prices and availability, you might have to ask your hairdresser. The shampoos cost around CHF 30, the conditioner around CHF 40. O'right styling products are usually somewhere between CHF 30 and CHF 40. 

Have you tried O'right yet? And what are your thoughts on corporate responsibility?

Have a great day!
xx Cheryl

*press samples, all opinions are honest and my own. 

Tuesday, 28 August 2018

Yon-Ka Aroma-Fusion Review

I have no idea when autumn officially starts but we've had the first rainy days over the weekend. It's nearly 30 degrees again today but I kind of felt an autumn vibe on Saturday and isn't a rainy day the perfect excuse for some pampering? I'm well prepared for occasions like that. A few months ago I got to know Yon-Ka, a french skincare brand which is mainly used in SPAs but has some gorgeous products to use at home. This is what I reach for when I want a short but relaxing beauty break at home, mostly due to the scents of the products. The brand has many years of experience in aromatherapy, which is used to create their products. 

The collection was presented in the SPA area of the Ladies First Hotel in Zurich. It was like a scent journey through different parts of France and that's because the scents of their new Aroma Fusion* collection are inspired by french regions like the Provence or even Corsica. We had the opportunity to test some mini-beauty-treatments such as a hand massage including a scrub and an oil. What I found extremely pleasing was that Yon-Ka offers a choice of exfoliating particles. There's salt, sugar or a grain, each of them feel different on the skin but none of them are drying. Furthermore, you can choose the scent of your oil and as we're talking aromatherapy here, each of the oils have a different effect on you which goes farther than "just" pampering your skin. Some are energizing, some relaxing, de-stressing and so on. Basically, you as a customer can choose how your scrub feels on your skin and what everything smells like. Cool, huh? 

Anyway, there's so much more about the brand to tell you but I guess I'll keep it short and sweet and hop right into the description of the Aroma Fusion collection. 

There's four basic scents: lavender from the Provence to detox, cedar-cypress from the french woods for your silhouette, oranges from Corsica for vitality and tiaré from French Polynesia to relax. My personal favourite is cedar-cypress, the one which sadly has the least amount of products in the line. I tested one product of each scent for you.

The Hydrating Repairing Body Milk from the "Detox" line combines lavender, everlasting and petitgrain but lavender clearly is the strongest scent in the body milk. It feels light on the skin and sinks in quickly but it is very hydrating and makes my skin feel velvety and smooth.  I'd say it'll still provide enough hydration in the colder months. The lavender scent lingers on for a long time which makes the whole product experience particularly relaxing. The body milk has a soothing effect too, which might help if the skin on your body tends to look irritated. 

The second product I tried is the Toning Smoothing Dry Oil from the "Silhouette" line. And - oh my word - this is amazing! With its combination of cedar-cypress and pink pepper it smells like SPA-heaven. It's a dry oil so your skin won't feel too oily after using it but it's still oily enough so you can massage this product into your skin. It's the combination of the massage and the oil which makes your skin smoother. As always, I want to be 100% honest with you: I didn't use the oil where my silhouette would need it, if you know what I mean... I use this as part of my bed-time ritual when I need something extra to relax. I just spray it into the palms of my hands and massage it onto my legs and on my wrists, so I can smell it. The scent transports me far away from anything stressful because it reminds me of holidays in New Zealand, which is like a second home to me. My skin does look better when I applied the oil but this is not the reason why I use it. It's the whole relaxing experience which is just what I need to wind down. 

"Relax" has a sweet scent with a clear note of jasmine. I tested the Nourishing Exfoliating Sugar Scrub for you and I love it simply because it delivers everything I'm looking for in a body scrub. It smells nice, the sugar exfoliates without leaving my skin feeling dry but well nourished because of the oils in the product. Do I need to say more? I don't think so. It's great! 

Last but definitely not least, the Repairing Comforting Hand Cream with mandarin and sweet orange from the "Vitality" line is dedicated to take care of your severely dry hands. It has a very rich texture but sinks in unbelievably quick, just leaving a slightly waxy feeling on the hands. This makes them feel extra smooth. The "Vitality" line aims to revitalize, so that's what the Yon-Ka experts recommend if you're looking for an energizing treatment. The hand cream contains shea butter and lots of vitamins to nourish and protect your skin. 

I think the prices are different depending on your country and I couldn't find the ones for Switzerland, so I just tell you that they're not cheap but not insanely expensive either, especially considering the beautiful essential oils in the products. 

In my opinion, Yon-Kas Aroma Fusion collection combines scents and texture perfectly and manages to transport that luxurious and relaxing Spa feeling to your home. I'm very pleased with all the products I tried and I'm excited that I already have two other Yon-Ka products to review for you soon. 

Have you ever tried Yon-Ka? Which line do you think you'd like most?

Have a great day!
xx Cheryl

*press samples, all opinions are honest and my own.

Sunday, 19 August 2018

Dermalogica Biolumin-C Serum

Over the last couple of months, I've tested a serum that smells like fresh orange juice and leaves the skin looking even and healthily glowing. Sounds intriguing, right? I'm talking about Dermalogica's new Biolumin-C serum*. 

As the name suggests, the serum contains a relatively high percentage of vitamin C, a strong antioxidant, which also helps to prevent skin damage from UV rays. Recent studies showed that vitamin C manages to strengthen the skins natural defence system and therefore, the skin is protected better against oxidative stress. If you want to know more about oxidative stress, what it is and why it happens, please leave a comment below. I'm sure I can find an expert to explain it in detail on the blog for you. 

The serum aims to fight three processes which are responsible for the aging of our skin. The processes are influenced or even induced by UV-rays, stress, pollution and our personal lifestyle and they lead to signs of aging such as pigmentation, wrinkles or loss of skin elasticity. With its vitamin C complex, the serum tackles those signs of aging and makes the skin look more even, firmer and more glowing.

Products containing vitamin C aren't new on the market. So what is innovative about this product? Vitamin C is difficult to stabilize. This means that it often loses its effect when it's used externally. Furthermore, it sometimes can't reach the skin layers where it's actually needed. Biolumin-C combines two forms of synthetic vitamin C to make it more stable. Additionally, it contains alpha hydroxy acids which remove dead skin cells and enable the skin to absorb the vitamins. 

As my skin is still quite young, I can't tell you a lot about anti-aging effects on my skin. Nevertheless, it was very easy to notice what this product did for my skin. I have some hyper-pigmentation on my cheeks caused by blemishes. After using the serum for about a week I started to see a difference. My complexion looked more even, the hyper-pigmentation was clearly reduced and my skin was glowing. You could use the serum twice a day but using it in the evening was enough for me to see an effect. The product is hydrating too but it doesn't moisturize my skin enough to skip the night cream. I knew about the ingredients and the aims of the product but I still didn't expect such great results. I guess it would be worth a try for someone struggling with blemishes. For me, it's the perfect base for my preferred natural make-up look. My skin is radiant without using an illuminating primer or highlighter and I can easily get away just using some concealer wherever I need it instead of applying foundation. 

The Biolumin-C serum was presented at a blogger event at the Dermalogica store & spa in Zurich. They fed us a lot of information on ingredients and effects of the serum and as you can see in the picture below, everyone was busy listening and taking notes. By the way, the food was great! Fruit and veg everywhere and a smoothie bar in the corner, yaay!

I've only been to two Dermalogica events so far and tested two of their products and a facial but I can already tell you that I'm a fan of the brand. They're very professional and their team is lovely! If you haven't been to the store in Zurich yet and you're interested in good quality skincare, I'd recommend visiting the store. It's beautiful and there's so much to learn about the brand and its products. 

The serum retails for around CHF 105. It isn't exactly inexpensive but I'm honestly so impressed by the quality and the effects of it, I think it's worth every penny. 

Have a great day!

xx Cheryl

*press sample. All opinions are honest and my own.