First impressions

It's come to my attention that I cannot write a focused blogpost. I think this stems from the fact that when I imagine someone clicking on my link I don't want them to feel short-changed with a single image/line of text (I friggin' hate blogs that do that..what a waste of effort/time for the reader) so as a result I include just about everything. in long, rambling essays. I will try my best to be less scattergun in the future but sod it, today you get a post that packs it all in :)

The Makeup

Over the last week I have amassed a nice little stash of makeup and all of it makes my palms sweaty with excitement. I have dabbled with it all and while you can expect more detailed posts in the future here are my first impressions so far.

Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet Foundation

I did make a vow not to buy a foundation for a few months but I blame this on peer pressure. See I was out for lunch with Simone and Laura and post-food consumption we made a detour to Sephora "just to look". The Chanel stand came into view and there it was - the new foundation. The counter lady had to step aside as we bulldozed her over to get to the stock and we each walked away with one.

I got 40 Beige and I am glad I got this shade as I have noticed that this seems to dry a teeny bit lighter than it applies. I read Allison's review and she also reiterated that finding - glad I am not the only one!

This has the same texture as Giorgio Armani Maestro - something I hated by the way - but thankfully has a much better coverage and finish. It is light/medium finish and leaves a soft focus. I like it and it seems to last a decent amount of time but I can't seem to come to a firm conclusion. Yesterday I thought it was just okay and today I thought it was miraculous. I'll give it a few more days.

PS. On my eyebrows is MAC Lingering - my new favourite brow product after undergoing another session of balayage on my barnet this weekend. That's me and the bleach done for a month. 

The Smashbox Full Exposure palette

I actually tried to find this in Kuala Lumpur. I went to all the Sephora's on a mission to get it. Admittedly there are only two Sephora's so don't feel too sorry for me but I went back multiple times to each in hope that it was in stock. It wasn't.

I don't care how many neutral palettes hit the shelves, I'll always give them the eye. I do see what some of the reviews have said about the shimmers - there is a lot of sparkle involved - but the bottom row is what I am most excited about. They are gorgeous matte shades in the kind of tones that I will always use. I will definitely be perking up my Sunday by applying this tomorrow morning. No Easter holidays round here :(

Tom Ford Lip Colour Sheer

I attended a Tom Ford makeover this week - more of that later - and as a thank you for taking part I got given this perfect little set of lipsticks.

These form part of the Spring 2014 collection and are intended to be intensely moisturising as well as providing enough pigment to saturate the lips. There are 8 shades in total and I got given Pink Dune, Sweet Spot, Firecracker and Incorrigible.

Initially I assumed that sheer would translate as a wash of colour. I don't like that and I certainly don't like the idea of paying $$$ for it. But phew! I am really happy then that these give a lot more colour than I first thought - the latter two (Firecracker and Incorrigible) are fantastically pigmented. I'll wear them in a FOTD this week and show you what I mean in more detail.

NB: I feel like this post is becoming an actual "to do" list for blogposts this week :) 


Why not close the post with something totally unrelated to the content that sits above? Welcome to yesterday's OOTD!

I got the skirt from ASOS a couple of weeks ago but have only just put it on now. For some reason it feels very "Easter" weekend and this must be why I have justified wearing it two days in a row. The top however was not worn two days straight - on day 1 it suffered the same fate as anything white does in my wardrobe - one day of wear and it's splattered with balsamic vinegar. I cannot eat a salad cleanly.

Top: Zara
Skirt: ASOS - Link!
Sunglasses: Celine
Bag: Celine

Right, I'll see you all tomorrow!

Have you tried any of these makeup goodies? I would love to know what you think - especially of the Chanel foundation!

The Time is Meow

How awesome is this tee? I mean really! It's so awesome that I am going to dedicate a post to prattling on about it. 

As soon as I saw it on ASOS I added it to basket and also got the really crazy cat lady - Laura Carlson - one as well. 

The tee itself is cropped and quite boxy in shape. For that reason something fitted needs to be worn below so I would see myself wearing this with a white pencil skirt or with the high waisted trousers I am doing right now :) 

PS: This actually forms part of my dog walking OOTD as I am soon out for walk 2/3 and made a change into something more casual when I came home. 

Tee: ASOS - UK Link!/ US Link! (I ordered the UK 10 as this is part of the Petite range and I was worried it might be too small but actually isn't at all so I think it's safe to stay true to size) 

And yes, the hair! 

So as you know I went to Pastels this week (the ONLY salon to trust in Dubai!) and Anthony (the ONLY stylist) and I decided to get on the road to blondeville. The final destination shade of blonde is undecided but as someone that loves a hair transformation, I am excited to get started :) 

The main aim of this initial session was to lighten my base, and to maintain the balayage and ombre to give it some added dimension. It's a warm result and I think I need to maintain some of that in the future - I am not sure my skintone can handle anything cool. I am actually going back soon for another colour session so consider this a work in progress :) 

Hope you all had a great week so far!

Keeping it simples

I think white jeans are going to be my sartorial motto for the week. Dubai suddenly got very hot and it's sweatsville all day and night. White jeans are perfect for staying covered whilst keeping cool. Well, sort of.

Everything here is standard stuff that I have had for a while - the only newish thing is those Topshop shoes I mentioned. Someone on Instagram said that they thought the shade of these beauties was a dupe for Essie Topless and Barefoot. I love that reference :)  I want to thank the "Recommended" item list that sits in the right sidebar on without that I would never have discovered them!

Top: ASOS - Link!
Blazer: Zara (old)
Jeans: Zara TRF
Shoes: Topshop - Link!
Bag: Celine
Sunglasses: RayBan

Makeup wise I have been pairing it down this week. I was fannying around with makeup on Saturday and decided that I wanted to be "minimal". That decision has seeped it's way into this week as well. It's all powder foundation and oodles of luminous highlighter.

I have been giving Benefit's "Watt's Up" a whirl for the latter. After a few days of usage I am going to say this:

a) The colour is lovely - it's a champagne coloured highlighter that gives a candlelit (cliche alert!) lit from within glow. It's not the easiest to blend but once worked in (with fingers) gives a very other worldly look on the skin.
b) The longevity of this also rates highly. It's exceeds NARS Copacabana multiple in my opinion. It also doesn't crease so it's one that can be worn on the lids.
c) The packaging is infuriating. It keeps breaking and the sponge applicator that sits on one end makes me angry because it doesn't even work effectively to blend the product in.
d) Naff packaging aside I would recommend it for the overall impact on the skin. For a cream highlighter it is truly lovely.

Face: Laura Mercier Mineral Powder in Classic Beige
Cheeks: Benefit "Watt's Up"
Eyes: Benefit "Watt's Up" over lids, MUFE Smokey Lash and a teeny tiny bit of L'oreal liquid liner
Lips: Lancome "Gloss in Love" gloss in 200. SO BEAUTIFUL. It's just a clear/white gloss but really does a number on your lips.
Brows: Nothing....which is a mistake. NARS Bali needs to live on them!

I am not sure how long this current FOTD trend will last though as I have a Tom Ford makeover tomorrow lunchtime so the next time you see my face I may well be back to piling it on in a big way :)

Ooh and I will try and snap some pictures for a quick post early tomorrow morning regarding my hair because after a 4 hour session in the chair it looks just a little bit different :)

See you soon!

Tom Ford Velvet Orchid

Impartiality pretty much went out the window with this one. I could have easily written this review before I even ripped open the packaging. You know my love for Black Orchid runs deep so any diffusion version is automatically going to result in a positive review.


And without question, I love this fragrance.

Fancy that eh? :)

It has more than a hefty portion of the original Black Orchid accord - that hypnotic slightly earthy scent - but within seconds transforms into something different. You get honey, rum, and florals like jasmine and rose. The dry down is intensely warm and maybe even a little powdery. It reminds me of a hybrid of TF Noir and Black Orchid - potent, sweet and addictive.

The florals make it feel like a more feminine fragrance when compared to the original but you know what I think? I think this would smell absolutely fantastic on a man as well so the unisex title definitely still holds but perhaps a little less obviously.

I saw a review that described this well: "if you hated the original Black Orchid then you'll probably like this and if you liked Black Orchid then you'll definitely like this".

What's nice is that they have made this different enough to justify the purchase. Sure, the bottle looks exactly the same (albeit with a purple tint to it) but the fragrance goes in a different direction. If I described Elie Saab as the fragrance worn by a Rich Bird then this would have to be what a Sensual Bird would wear.

Velvet Orchid is confusingly not out everywhere at the same time. In the Middle East you can find it at all counters now. Everywhere else it's out from July BUT you can get it on the Tom Ford website now for a not insignificant $112-$159.

I think the best course of action is to make a bee-line for the aggressive sales team manning the department store beauty hall/duty free and give it a spray.

What do you think of this release?

Are you a Black Orchid devotee like me? :) 
buynow/bloglater. All rights reserved. © Maira Gall.