Yep, it has been quite some time since my last monthly favourites blog post… I was too embarassed to scroll through my blog posts to see exactly when the last one was, but I’m guess it’s almost 3 or 4 months!? Eeeeek! Like I mentioned in this blog post, I’m not quite sure where September went… I know I consumed a large amount of cold beverages (this heat is driving me insane!) and spent a lot of money on things I don’t really need (what else is new?) but other than that, my mind draws a blank.
Through my compulsive need to try each and every new product that I see in the shops, every now and again I discover a couple of things that fill my heart with excitement and happiness. These beauty gems usually make it to my monthly favourites blog post because I love sharing my discoveries (whether they’re new or old favourites) with you. I’ll be totally honest – I have focused more on skincare and body care these past couple of months and have hardly dabbled in any new makeup products. It must have something to do with this sweltering heat, because the thought of applying layers of makeup only to have it melt off by midday, sends chills down my spine.
My ‘September Favourites’ are actually July, August and September favourites all rolled into one, these are the products I have reached for the most during these past 3 months. I have also included a cheeky little lifestyle favourite, and I think I’ll include at least 1 of these non-beauty favourites in each monthly favourites post as I think you will enjoy seeing which food, fashion or home décor items tickled my pickle during each month. We all have interests outside of the realm of beauty, right?
Here are the products I have been LOVING lately…
The Body Shop Atlas Mountain Rose Eau De Toilette ♥ R 275,00 – If you adore the smell of fresh roses in full bloom, then you will love this fragrance. It’s definitely not an old fashioned rose scent (all powdery and synthetic), it’s rather a light-hearted fresh and dewy fragrance that reminds me of a bed of roses. It wears really well on my skin, around 6 to 8 hours, which is great lasting power considering it’s an Eau De Toilette. This feminine scent is so versatile, it’s refreshing on hot Summer days and uplifting during the colder weather too.
Also, you can’t deny that pink glass bottle is just perfection! The Body Shop products are available at your nearest The Body Shop store, or in selected Clicks stores nationwide.
Mario Badescu Drying Lotion ♥ R 360,00 – This is probably the product that has stood out to me the most these past couple of months. I received a parcel from Mario Badescu South Africa almost 3 months ago and started using the goodies immediately as I had been lusting after their products ever since Jaclyn Hill raved about them in her videos. The Drying Lotion and the Rosewater Facial Spray are my current favourites, but in this blog post I will be focusing on the small, yet mighty blemish zapper. You can expect a blog post featuring the rosewater facial spray soon, because it is the only product that has managed to keep me refreshed on hot Summer days (I think we skipped Spring and dived straight into Summer).
Ok, getting back to the Drying Lotion – the bottle contains a dual-phase liquid that is a mix of calamine (soothes and calms the spot), camphor (anti-inflammatory), colloidal sulfur (reduces oil gland activity & sebum production) and salicylic acid (an exfoliant that alleviates pore congestion). The best time to apply is shortly before bed after cleansing, toning and moisturising. It is very important that you ensure the 2 layers are separated (do not shake the bottle before you use it), dip a cotton bud / q-tip through the yellow layer into the calamine solution (pink sediment at the bottom) and slowly pull the q-tip out. Dab it onto any spots you need to treat, and don’t worry about rubbing it in or anything like that, just wait for it to dry within a couple of minutes. I had a quite a number of spots a couple of weeks ago (my first breakout in almost 6 months) and I was SO impressed with this product. I know it sounds unbelievable (and a little bit ridiculous) but by the next morning the spots were significantly reduced, and almost completely gone. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll know I’m not the type of blogger who will go overboard with claims such as “it disappeared within minutes” or “this product changed my skin overnight” but it this case, it really is true. The spots did not disappear in one night, but the Drying Lotion calmed the redness surrounding each spot and reduced the size of each spot too. I am 100% confident this treatment works better and more consistently than any other over-the-counter (drugstore) spot treatments I have ever used. And I have had my fair share of acne problems during my teen years and also in my late twenties. I eventually took the plunge and went on Roaccutane for 6 months, it definitely took care of my cystic acne problems but I do still get the occasional breakout when I’m stressed.
It is suitable for all skin types and doesn’t aggravate or sensitise the skin. BUT if you have very sensitive skin, I do suggest you exercise caution because it is drying (it’s how acne treatments typically work) and I personally wouldn’t constantly treat the same spot over and over again. It also works really well on those ‘blind’ pimples that never surface, it gets rid of them matter of days versus weeks. Yes, it is a bit more expensive than other spot treatments, but you only use the tiniest bit each time so it will last you for years. Plus I get a kick out of seeing each spot shrivel up and die, practically overnight.
Trust me when I say: EVERYONE needs this in their skincare stash, whether you are male or female. If you struggle with acne and blemishes, this will sort them out in a flash! Mario Badescu products are now available in South Africa – you can purchase them in the Mario Badescu SA online store.
Top Tip: The Mario Badescu Drying Lotion also takes the itch out of pesky mosquito bites!
Benefit Roller Lash Mascara ♥ R 295,00 – I remember when this mascara was first launched in the US, ‘Roller Lash’ was THE buzz word in the beauty vlogging world. I desperately wanted to try it too, but ordering it from the Benefit website was just too pricey for me (shipping costs were insane). I was so happy when Benefit finally returned to South Africa because I was able to place an online order through Red Square (with free delivery). Benefit They’re Real mascara is one of my all-time favourite mascaras, so I was keen to see how Roller Lash would compare.
Roller Lash is a mascara that claims to lift and curl lashes, eliminating the need for a lash curler. Who doesn’t want to skip a step or two in their makeup routine? It features Benefit’s patent-pending Hook ‘n’ Roll brush, with hooks that grab each lash from root to tip (even those short stubby ones). Don’t worry, these ‘hooks’ are 100% eye friendly. You can’t really see the hooks in the photo above, so I suggest you head over to their website here to see a more detailed photo. Roller Lash Mascara also contains a built-in ‘wand wiper’ to ensure that the brush isn’t overloaded with product, this prevents the mascara from weighing down the eyelashes.
When I apply Roller Lash, I really can feel it catching each lash and it almost feels like they’re being molded upward (almost like a push-up bra for your lashes). The formula of this mascara is perfect – not too wet and not too dry, so it coats each lash in black pigment and separates them too. I love the fluttery effect it gives my lashes, plus it really did hold a curl throughout the day. I’ll use this mascara in a makeup tutorial soon to give you a chance to see what it can do, it really is nothing short of wonderful!
Oh So Heavenly Vanilla Cupcake Bubble Balm ♥ R 27,95 – So much more affordable than the eos lip balms, and SO much better in quality too. I couple of years ago I jumped on the whole eos sphere balm bandwagon and practically purchase every single scent there was (I think at one stage I owned 11 or 12 different ones). I stupidly bought all on eBay within a period of 1 or 2 months before I really had a chance to really test them because I didn’t want to miss out on the hype (don’t worry, I’ve learnt my lesson since then). Turned out I didn’t like them at all. It felt like the eos balms just sat on the lips, not providing any moisturising benefits and some of them were extremely artificially fragranced too. This cute little bubble balm from Oh So Heavenly is EVERYTHING I wanted the eos lip balms to be: Moisturising, smooth, comfortable and not too fragranced.
I currently own 2 of the 3 variants (‘Vanilla Cupcake’ and ‘Strawberries & Cream’) and I love both equally, they glide onto the lips and leave my lips feeling soft and hydrated. Each balm contains shea butter and beeswax, both are superior moisturisers that treat dry & cracked lips and beeswax is also known to lock in moisture wherever it is applied. Vanilla Cupcake smells so delicious, exactly like the Vanilla Cupcake Yankee Candle, but the scent isn’t too overpowering or sickly sweet at all. Strawberries & Cream smells like strawberry yoghurt, so delectable!
Oh So Heavenly products are exclusive to Clicks stores.
Kiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment With Avocado ♥ R 355,00 – This is definitely one of my best purchases of 2015… My under eyes have always been my problem area, they are extremely dehydrated and so concealers never look smooth in those areas. Because of this, I am constantly on the hunt for the latest & greatest eye creams. This specific eye treatment cream from Kiehl’s was on my ‘To Buy’ list for the longest time, but I couldn’t find it in stock anywhere for a good couple of months (I’m guessing it’s because everyone loves it so much). I finally managed to find it in stock at the Brooklyn Mall Edgars store, I was so chuffed! The very first thing I noticed about product is that it blends out to an almost watery consistency, so there is a lovely cooling sensation. It not only hydrates the under eye area but also brightens and ever so slightly de-puffs too. I like to apply this morning and evening, after my cleansing routine and before my moisturiser. This thick & creamy yellow-green goodness has become a non-negotiable in my skincare routine. As a beauty blogger, I do have to test & trial new eye creams every now and again, but I will say I always miss this Kiehl’s eye treatment on the days when I don’t use it.
I like to take the tiniest amount (it is quite rich) and gently rub it between my ring fingers, then dab under the eyes. I find it leaves the delicate skin feeling smooth and hydrated, and looking well-rested too. This fail-safe treatment contains avocado oil, shea butter and antioxidants, these are all great for your skin. One last thing I’d like to mention is that the formula doesn’t migrate, so it works great under makeup as well.
Kiehl’s products are available at Kiehl’s counters in selected Edgars stores nationwide.
P.S. Have you entered my Kiehl’s #PioneersByNature giveaway? There’s an amazing skincare hamper up for grabs, you can take a look here.
Imperial Leather Foamburst Shower Gel ♥ R 29,95 – This is such an interesting product! I was moseying around Dis-Chem a couple of months ago, and looking for interesting products that I have never used before (how adventurous of me). This shower gel from Imperial Leather caught my eye, mainly because of the packaging. The shower gel is contained in a metal canister that is easy to hold and pump in the shower (there is nothing more frustrating that struggling to squirt your favourite shower gel / body wash onto your loofah). The plastic top fits perfectly in the palm of my hand and squirts the gel out under pressure, this creates extra-creamy foam that later expands into a soft and pillowy textured delight. I initially bought 2 bottles (this green one and a purple one), the green is called ‘Summer Zest’ and contains mandarin, lemon & Ylang Ylang – it is the perfect pick-me-up for those early, sleepy morning showers. It smells fresh and invigorating, it really is a treat. The rich and creamy lather glides across your skin like silk, and leaves the skin feeling soft and moisturised. After almost 4 weeks, my bottle is completely empty (a little goes a long way) and I’ll be moving on to the purple variant called ‘Moisture Delight – Passionflower & Jojoba’. Now if only Dis-Chem would import more items from the range as I would love to try the ‘Nourishing Shea Butter & Orange Blossom’ and ‘Moisturising Honey & Almond Milk’ variants too.
Top Tip: This Foamburst shower gels are double-duty products, you can use them as an everyday shower gel or as a shaving cream too.
Flavourburst Low Fat Plain Yoghurt & Fruit Compote ♥ R 12,95 – For my lifestyle favourite, I would like to introduce you to something I discovered during the month of September and it was literally love at first spoonful! I’m very adventurous when it comes to trying & testing new foods, so when I saw this at Woolworths a couple of weeks ago, I immediately popped both the ‘Raspberry Fruit Compote’ and ‘Peach Fruit Compote’ into my basket. I enjoyed both but I really, REALLY like the peach compote one. So this is a new product from Woolies, called the ‘Flavourburst Low Fat Plain Yoghurt with X Compote’. The packaging features 2 cups, one contains the unsweetened low fat yoghurt and the other smaller sized cup contains a delectable fruit compote. I imagine you’re supposed to scoop the fruit into the yoghurt but I’ve always enjoyed each side separately. Remember the Danone dual cups when we were kids, I never mixed the sides together but rather enjoyed each on their own. I start with the yoghurt side, and then finish off with the compote and it’s just enough sweetness to settle my sweet tooth after dinner, plus I imagine it’s a healthier option compared to an ice lolly or sour gums (these are usually my after dinner treats).
There are 2 other variants available as well – ‘Vanilla Seed Granola’ and ‘Salted Caramel & Chocolate Coated Honeycomb’. Woolworths is currently running a promotion on these new yoghurt cups, 2 for R 20,00.
OH! And while we’re on the subject of yoghurt, I also saw a new ‘Coconut & Lime’ flavoured double cream yoghurt at Woolies yesterday and I bought one for a taste test, because well…we already know how I feel about coconuts.
So, those are all the products I’ve been loving these past few months! Tell me, which products have you been enjoying? Perhaps you could introduce me to a couple of new & exciting products…
I hope you are having a lovely week so far!
Before I go… Did you see I have a NEW video up on my YouTube channel? One of my blog readers (Hi, Rachael!) requested a super quick & easy makeup look using only affordable drugstore products. So that’s what I did, plus I also only used drugstore makeup brushes too. Click here to take a look!