Min's Beauty Equipment: December 2013

Sunday, 29 December 2013

My Favourite Nude Lipsticks - YSL Rouge Volupte and L'Oreal Glam Shine

Today I was getting ready to get out and about with my family. I tried to be quick, but my husband was standing there behind me and kept telling me to be quicker. I got so fed up that I decided to make him take some pictures of me just to annoy him a little bit. I said I needed them for my post. So, this is how this post came about.

I am not wearing anything special on my eyes, but I am wearing my favourite nude lipstick by Yves Saint Laurent, which I thought would be quite cool to share with all of you. Also, I love to add a bit of shine on top of the nude YSL lipstick. L'Oreal Glam Shine is great. It adds just the right amount of shine and glamour to my lips, which I have struggled to convey in my photo.

YSL Rouge Volupte lipstick
Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte lipstick
YSL Rouge Volupte nude lipstick with L'Oreal Glam Shine Eternal Beige lip gloss
YSL Rouge Volupte nude lipstick
with L'Oreal Glam Shine Eternal
Beige lip gloss
What do sellers of Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte Shine lipstick say? The Selfridges website says that the lipstick "contains an all-in-one cocktail of lip care, for lips that are increasingly beautiful, comfortable and plump. Protection, comfort, wet-looking shine, homogeneous colour that does not smudge: Rouge Volupte Shine melts on your lips and stay with you for hours of pure pleasure, and unlimited seduction. " Beautiful words, but I have to agree with most of the things said. I love it. It costs around £24 in most shops. I do have to reapply it as it does not stay with you for hours without reapplication. I do not mind it though as nude colour is easy to apply - you don't need to be very accurate like you would with bright colour lipsticks. Most of the time I don't even use a mirror.

L'Oreal Glam Shine Eternal Beige lip gloss
L'Oreal Glam Shine Eternal Beige
lip gloss
What about L'Oreal Glam Shine Eternal Beige lip gloss? Sellers claim that this lip product lasts for up to six hours, which is a bit of an overestimation, but it does not matter that much as reapplying is as easy as applying a lip balm. The Glam Shine is a bit sticky and I don't like that sticky feeling on my lips, therefore, I use a combination of YSL lipstick with this gloss. It feels perfect and I love the way it looks. If you don't mind the stickiness L'Oreal lip gloss looks great on its own. It costs around £3 to £4 in most places online including delivery or £8.65 at Boots.

Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte lipstick together with L'Oreal Glam Shine Eternal Beige lip gloss looks particularly good with dark eye make-up. It's my favourite combination and I always feel very glam when wearing all of this together. If you would like to see what this combination looks like in a video, you are welcome to watch me on YouTube. Please find the video here:

I have pale skin, but I wonder how does nude lipstick look with other skin tones? Do you like and/or wear nude lipsticks?

Monday, 23 December 2013

Micellar Water Bargains: Pure 3-in-1 Cleanser, Toner and Refresher

Yesterday I was walking past Savers when I decided to pop in for a couple of bathroom essentials. My eyes wondered off and I noticed a couple bottles of micellar water.

Pure Micellar Water
Pure 3-in-1 cleanser, toner and
refresher micellar water (150 ml)
and MICELLAR WATER (200 ml)
To those who don't know, micellar water is just another form of a make-up remover, but it is more gentle as it doesn't dry out skin, it is non-greasy and your skin does not require a toner afterwards.

So, the bottles were both priced at £1.99 each. I didn't trust them as I found them to be cheap. Nevertheless, I was curious enough to try these concoctions out. L'Oreal Paris Skin Perfection 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution is the cheapest micellar water at Boots which sells for £3.33 at the moment. All the other micellar waters sell for around £10 at Boots, mainly above this price tag.

I picked up the micellar water by pure and another one. I am not sure what the brand name of this second one is. Is it an unbranded micellar water or micellar water is their brand name? If they are no good at removing make-up, I will mix them up with some oily cleanser of which I have plenty lying around at home. In the very worst case, I'll just throw them out. This is how the two bottles that you can see in the picture on the right appeared on my shelf.

The same night I put them both to test - I cleaned one eye with micellar water by pure, another eye with that other one. To my surprise, they both did a great job, better than L'Oreal micellar solution, which I never found to be outstanding, just good. They both left my skin feeling pleasantly soft and refreshed. I did not feel like I needed to use a toner afterwards. The only problem is that the micellar water on the right hand side of my picture has a strong soapy smell, which I kind of find unacceptable for a make-up remover. I will use it, but I might not buy it again if I can get hold of pure micellar water. It is still a good product though!

The micellar water 3-in-1 cleanser, toner and refresher by pure is amazing. It looks like I got some new favourite for a fraction of the price of my old make-up removers.

What is your favourite way to remove make-up? Do you have any favourite products that are simply a bargain?

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

How to Create Magical Christmas Atmosphere?

Christmas atmosphere
Christmas tree and decorations
Many blogs have been dedicating at least one post to Christmas, so now is my turn. I love the idea of spreading Christmas atmosphere as it brings us all closer and makes the festive season so special.

We must all know by now that it is not just the Christmas day that counts, but the whole preparation and excitement that comes beforehand. The earlier we start, the jollier it gets. Most of us hate winter and a third of it flies by in anticipation and preparation for Christmas.

So, what have I done to make December a jolly month?

    Christmas cards create great festive atmosphere
    Christmas cards with the tall ones received from Santa
  • My kiddies and I wrote letters to Santa. The boy, who is four, took writing his wish list very seriously and he came up with 10 items on the list. Maya, who is two, decided that the best present for her would be a kiss from Father Christmas! Very sweet! Thanks to the Royal Mail, we received a response from Santa!
  • We decorated a Christmas tree and created a few more decorations around the house.
  • Kept a few candles lit most of the time for the ambient and relaxing atmosphere at home.
  • Kept the Christmas tree lights lit in the evenings.
  • Attended a few Christmas parties. I believe that this is the time when we should attend as many parties as possible. Ordinarily, I reject some invitations just because it takes me too long to recover and I have my little ones to care for. It is different before Christmas as this is the time when we should all be together. Now I will make an effort for anyone who I care about as if I don't do it now, then when?
Christmas cards sent to our relatives and friends
Some letters sent to our friends and relatives
  • Sent postcards and a few gifts to my friends and family. Sending e-mails is great and receiving Christmas wishes by e-mail is lovely, but there is something special about hard paper traditional postcards. A lot of us celebrate Christmas because it is a tradition, often without knowing that it is the birth of Jesus that we celebrate. I have not ditched the tradition to celebrate and I don't want to ditch the tradition of sending postcards by post. Paper cards remind me of the people I love during the whole festive season as I often display them as part of my Christmas decorations. Also, other people often appreciate them more as it takes more effort to write a postcard that to send a card electronically.
  • To make it more festive the kids were allowed to eat more sweets than usual. The one thing I would like to improve on is some cookies. I would love to make my own home-made cookies, which I haven't done yet.
  • Played a lot of Christmas songs. One of my favourite songs is Living next door to Alice by Smokie (sorry for some explicit language). Although it is not a Christmas song as such, it always reminds me of Christmas, so for me it is a Christmas song. My music teacher at school would always play this song before the holiday during our music lesson. The teacher was outstanding; he always created amazing Christmas atmosphere in the music room for the festive season with loud music, darkened windows and lots of Christmas decorations. We all sang our favourite Christmas songs and it all felt like we were having a magical party. We always left the classroom feeling wonderful with big smiles on our faces.
  • Most of the time we had our little oil burner lit, Christmassy aroma permeating the room and filling the house with the wonderful scent of white cardamom and mistletoe.
  • Bought some presents early and wrapped them up so we could enjoy the Christmas atmosphere throughout December.
  • Read some Christmas stories for my kids before bedtime.

What else am I planning to do to spread the Christmassy atmosphere?

This beautiful example is from
  • Get some plates decorated with Santa, reindeer and other Christmassy stuff and use them throughout the remaining days of December until Christmas.
  • Wake up my kids with the Ho Ho Ho or a Jingle Bells song on Christmas day.

Final word

Do you celebrate Christmas? What are the things that made your run up to Christmas special? Did you get ready for Christmas early or you wait for the last minute?

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

How to Floss Your Teeth Properly?

As my head is spinning with all the Christmassy stuff and I am really struggling to cook up any great ideas for a post, I decided to talk about my favourite tooth floss and my oral hygiene experience from the past.

Dental hygiene in the old Soviet Union days

Dental care routine - smile
Some of you may already know that I am from Lithuania. I was born in the soviet era and I am a third and last child in our family, which means that my parents are quite old now. I don't know what it is but there is something wrong with the oral hygiene of those people who were born and/or raised in the soviet times. There is an incredible lack of knowledge about simple things that seem to be obvious to everyone else these days. When I was a kid, nobody taught me to brush my teeth. Toothbrushes were not used that often by anyone in our family and, believe me, my family was not that unique.

I was told that an apple would clean my teeth or using baking soda to rinse my mouth once in a while would kill all the gems. Nobody ever enforced any rules onto me, so I lived happily eating lots of sweets and… going to the dentist VERY often: with swollen cheeks, root canals needing treatment and so on. In the old days there were no anaesthetics and there were always VERY long queues to see a dentist. No wonder! While waiting at the reception you could always hear somebody screaming from pain of having their teeth drilled, and every time you heard a drill shivers would start going right through your body. Brrr… By the time you reached the dentist chair your clothes would be drenched with cold sweat from fear.

Once at the dentist, the dentist will fix all the holes, but everyone seemed to keep tight lips regarding any advice. I cannot remember a single practitioner ever giving me advice regarding dental care or oral hygiene. Given that I was a kid I think I would have benefited from a bit of bollocking.

Well, now this is the history which left me with a lot of fillings. Thank god, I was gifted with a set of teeth that are fairly well shaped, so I still have a reasonably looking smile.

In the old days it was an unheard thing that I would go to the dentist and have nothing done to my mouth. I always needed at least a few fillings. Now I still struggle to trust my dentist if he says that I don't need any work done and my teeth are fine. He says: "See you in six months" and I say: "Are you sure? Seriously? You're sure you checked my mouth properly?". Once I even went to another dentist just to check that the first one had done a good job at checking up my teeth.

What is my current dental routine?

I still eat lots of sweets, but I do try to brush my teeth as often as I can. Also, I am obsessed with flossing my teeth. I floss them after every meal if I have a chance. Sometimes I go to the toilet and floss my teeth there if I am in a place other than my own home. A mouthwash is a must in my teeth care routine, at least twice a day.

I haven't changed my eating habits, but thorough and diligent tooth care seems to be making a huge difference.

How to floss properly?

Colgate interdental tooth floss
Colgate Interdental tooth floss
Take a generous amount of tooth floss, wrap it around your index fingers, hold it tight between your thumbs and index fingers, move the floss up and down, gliding along the side of each tooth, curve the floss around the base of each tooth, making sure you did beneath the gum line. Use clean sections of floss as you move from tooth to tooth. Continue flossing until you have cleaned between all of your teeth. Rinse with mouth wash. This advice comes from Colgate website.

For those little concave areas that are hard to reach with a tooth floss you could supplement your oral hygiene with Waterpik, which is a home device that uses stream of water to remove plaque and food debris from between your teeth and gum line.

Best dental floss

An unwaxed woven dental floss removes plaque best, but it can only be used between teeth that have lose to normal contact.

How to floss properly
Colgate Interdental tooth floss
Tight contact area between teeth requires a different kind of floss as an unwaxed floss would get stuck between teeth, tear or fray. All my teeth are very tight, therefore, an unwaxed dental floss is not an option for me. I use Colgate Interdental floss. In my opinion, it is the best tooth floss on the market for my type of teeth. I have tried most of the tooth floss in Boots and major supermarkets; Colgate Interdental floss seems to be the best for me by a big margin.

Some marketeers try to push the idea that Waterpik is the best way to floss your teeth, but the reality is that you will not be able to remove that heavily stuck meat in between your tight teeth with Waterpik. Also, if you use the highest setting you risk pushing the bacteria deeper into the gum line instead of out of the gum line. Waterpik can be a good complimentary product to your oral hygiene, but not a replacement for an ordinary tooth floss.

Final word

What is your oral hygiene? Do you floss? What oral hygiene products do you like or use?

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Scholl Express Pedi Hard Skin Remover and CCS Foot Care Cream Review

A lot of bloggers have been talking about pedicure and reviewed various products to keep their feet skin smooth and soft. It made me think about my own feet that probably have some dry rough skin that I have not removed for ages. Well, it's not summer now, so why bother? I can wait another few months before I start worrying about my hard skin on feet.

Feet before and after Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover and CCS Foot Care Cream
My foot before and after sanding it with Scholl Express Pedi hard
skin remover and applying CCS Foot Care Cream
A few days ago I went to Boots and I saw electric Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover and my opinion about my pedi changed. I wanted the device and I had to have it. If someone else looks after their feet, why shouldn't I? To deal with my rough and dry skin I also needed some foot cream, so I bought Swedish formula CCS Foot Care Cream.

The first reason for my purchase was the fact that Scholl Express Pedi is an electric device. I hate grating skin on my feet with anything that resembles sand paper. The second reason is that I had that wonderful shop assistant who had been helping me with my other purchases. The lady thought that the device was a good investment. It is not difficult to convince me!

How do you get hard skin on your feet?

The pressure on your feet from walking makes the skin harden. The body tries to protect itself that way as harder skin is able to withstand more pressure and friction.

There is nothing wrong with stiff skin on your feet, but most owners of such feet do not like the way their feet look.

There is no way to stop heels and soles from getting stiff. Thick hard skin will keep coming back, but the more standing up, walking or running you do, the quicker it will get hard again.

Using a foot cream or a moisturiser will help you keep soft and smooth feet for longer. Also, regular use of devices such as electric Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover will keep your feet in good condition.

Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover review

Scholl Express Pedi hard rough dry skin electric remover
Scholl Express Pedi electric
hard skin remover
So, today is the day when my feet received a makeover. I washed them, dried them out and got ready to use the Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover. The instructions say that you need to soak your feet before using the device, but I didn't do that. Regardless, it worked perfectly fine.

It's a very gentle battery operated electric rough hard dry skin removing device for feet. Every time you press harder the head stops spinning, which I think is good as the device works perfectly fine without the need to apply any pressure. Unlike all my old feet care non-electric devices, using Scholl product did not feel like grating my feet, it felt totally natural.

Scholl Express Pedi electric hard dry skin remover in use
Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover in action
Some people complain about the hygiene of Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover as all the stiff skin that gets shaved off falls on the floor and the device gets covered with the dead skin dust, but I don't find this as a problem. Do your pedi in the bathroom and simply blow all the dead skin off the device, then there will be no problem.

I could do with this hard skin remover having an electricity plug as I hate changing batteries. As soon as the batteries run out for any device, it takes me ages to get them replaced, but it's not a deal breaker.

For those who want to know the price, it cost me £30 for Scholl Express Pedi hard skin electric remover at Boots. Two Scholl Express Pedi Replacement Rollers cost £12.50. Some people complain that it is too expensive as the rollers wear off too quickly. I don't have an opinion on this as I have only used Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover once. After one aggressive use the rollers still look in perfect condition.

CCS Foot Care Cream for rough dry feet skin - review

CCS Foot Care Cream for rough dry hard feet skin
CCS Foot Care Cream
After I have sanded away the dead skin with Scholl Express Pedi hard skin remover, I applied CCS Foot Care Cream. This is an amazing cream. It's not too thin and it's not greasy. It's something in between, which is what I like. Feet felt fresh and moisturised. The skin after both the skin removing device and the foot care cream felt soft, nourished and smooth.

CCS Foot Care Cream is meant to manage and help prevent dry, rough and stiff feet, which, I believe, it does very well. The reviews of the product are very positive and confirm that it is the best product that most of the reviewers ever tried for their feet. The only complaint that people have is the price. It is one of the more expensive foot care creams. It costs £8 at Boots. It's not a big problem for me as I am not religious about applying foot care products on my skin, so one 175 ml tube will last me ages.

Here you can watch a demo on how to use Scholl Express Pedi on feet to remove hard skin:

Final Word

I found my perfect products to keep my feet in great condition until summer months.

Do you have any favourite foot care products? What is your foot care regime? Do you look after your heels and soles throughout the year or leave pedi only for summer months?