SCOTCH & SODA

The Amsterdam based couture store SCOTCH & SODA recently opened in Dubai Mall, and i had the privilege of visiting it when it first opened and it was on %50 sale!!

What i loved about the store is that all the garments fabrics were very soft and the designs are wearable for everyday use. The colors are subtle (maybe for this season)..but i noticed that the salesmen were a bit slow and maybe because the store is new and they were newly employed. I had to wait around 15 minutes in front of the cashier and only 2 persons were ahead of me.

Silky top with frill details
Signature leather belt with special buckle
Dandelion Make a Wish ring
Boyfriend fitted shorts

L’Oreal Gentle Makeup Remover

L’Oreal Gentle Makeup Remover for removing make up from eyes and even lips. I had a big wide smile when i used this eye makeup remover..i’m so happy i found a product “still not comparable with Chanel’s” but something that will work perfectly with me..no burning sensation, not oily and not too dry and it superly removed make up in no time..i dont have to rub that much..its very gentle and it does work good.
Compared with NIVEA’s
The only downfall of the product is its packaging, the cap can hardly be opened without a struggle and the product comes out from one side and i dont understand why. When i use CHANEL‘s all i have to do is point the hole to the cotton and the product comes out in straight light directly into the cotton, but this one comes out from one side so i usually lose some product in the process. I even tried placing the cotton above the hole but the product doesnt come out as much as i want it to be.

I dont think it will last long with me, only if i found a way to save the product from coming out this way.

Ego QV Cream

 
I noticed that alot of people dont know about this QV cream, its very magical, and suits everyone, its mostly recommended by dermatologists for skincare problems, extra dryness or if someone is sensitive from perfumed lotions/creams. 
This rich, protective cream replenishes the skin and helps repair dry areas. It contains squalene, a natural component found in the skin’s oil. Areas prone to dryness like the elbows, knees and hands will just love what QV Cream can do to help.
BENEFITS:

  • Recommended for moisturising dry skin.
  • Helps to seal in natural moisture by acting as a protective barrier.
  • Helps protect against dryness
  • pH 6, low-irritant formulation, free from fragrance, colour, lanolin and propylene glycol.
  • Suitable for skin conditions such as dry, scaly skin, winter itch, ichthyosis, xerosis, dermatitis. For the relief of symptoms of atopic eczema and psoriasis.
  • Suitable for sensitive skin.
  • Suitable for infants and the elderly.
You dont have to have a skin problem to be able to use it
QV products are available in pharmacies.

UNE Natural Beauty

UNE natural beauty is a new cosmetic brand developed by Bourjois supposedly mostly made of natural ingredients, some items are made of 100% natural ingredients if not mostly and part of it are organic and Paraben free (chemicals used in make up preservation).

The brand is fairly new and launched last year but i recently saw its advertisements in magazines and thought of trying it since its all natural and stuff. I know that mineral and natural make up is supposed to be good and healthy.

I didnt go wide with my collection, i only got the Skin-Glow Foundation, the Soft Minerals Powder Foundation and Breezy Cheeks Blush.

The Skin-Glow Foundation is described as a “light and moisturizing formula-fresh, luminous and ultra-natural complexion”.
My thoughts of the product: there is barely any coverage, feels like more of a tinted moisturizer. I didnt feel any glow in it, maybe i should take a lighter shade since it doesnt have any noticeable coverage to be able to feel the glow.

The Soft Minerals Powder Foundation is described as “fine and light powder texture. Even, luminous and natural complexion.”
My thoughts of the product: i used this powder foundation with a kabuki brush over the Skin-Glow Foundation, it didnt feel powdery or heavy which is good, and i can sense its a very light powder if its used alone.

The Breezy Cheeks Blush is described as “a cream powdery blush, instant glowing cheeks”.
My thoughts of the product: yes it feels like a cream powder blush, the texture is a bit heavy but not very pigmented, even though the colors look very dark in real which shocked me at first, and i thought to myself how can a fair skined girl use any of the blushes. But they were very fine and i liked it.

But there is one thing that shocked me about the products (not the blush) that never happened to me before with any similar products (liquid and powder foundations).  After using the products and for a couple of hours i went to the toilet to just rinse my mouth after a meal, and i literally saw the product melting around the mouth area, the product was getting washed with the water. This never happened with me before with any foundation i used, ive never seen this and i was quite shocked.
For a sense of humor i thought to myself this is the perfect “Islamic foundation” for who are worried to wear make up and do ablution, this one will get washed away immediately πŸ™‚

Pantene Oil Replacement

Classic Care Oil Replacement
I have to say that you will never know the value of the product until you use it correctly, or a way that you will feel comfortable with.

I remember i got the Pantene Oil Replacement a few years ago, when it first came into our market, and if you asked me about it at that time i will tell you that it really sucks and it makes my hair fall like crazy. True it did that to my hair at that time..

A few months ago i saw the same product at my sister’s room and i was feeling crazy at that time and wanted to just put something on my hair other than oil, and i found it on the table, i remember how yucky it was but i just wanted something..

I believe that i forgot how i used it the first time, i don’t even remember right now otherwise i would’ve told you how i used it at first, but i really cant remember..But this time what i did is that i put a small amount of my palm, took a small product on my other hand’s finger and spread it equally on my sculp, then i took another small amount and spread it on my hair and concentrated a little bit on the ends..

I put this product in the evening, my hair absorbed the product until the next day, during this time i felt my hair with extra volume, like i’ve put something inside my hair to make it look bigger, in a good way..
In the early afternoon i took my shower and i can tell you how soft and smooth my hair felt afterwards, and i can still sense some of the volume i heard the day before..

Now i went to buy this product again and they changed the packaging a little bit, maybe they enhanced the formula too, i don’t know. There are 4 kinds (Classic, Smooth & Silky, Anti-Hair Fall, Color Care) They say the Color Care is only available in Saudi Arabia.

Classic Care Oil Replacement:

Helps make your hair soft and smooth .
For hair that shines from root to tip, hair that’s strong against damage, you need the right kind of oil replacement which helps remove buildup while leaving hair with shine. Classic Care Oil Replacement delivers beautifully.

  • Leave hair shiny and healthy-looking.
  • Leave hair manageable and strong against damage.

Smooth & Silky Oil Replacement:

Specially designed to smooth and condition hair.

Replacement bath enriched with a unique Tri Amino + Pro-Vitamin Complex. Its formula gives you Moisturized smooth and shiny Hair.

 Anti-Hair Fall Oil Replacement:

The way to healthier and shiny hair. Root to tip moisture protect weak hair that falls due to breakage. Is specially designed for thin and oily hair.

Color Care Oil Replacement:
Protects the shade of your color-treated hair.

This reparative Pro-Vitamin deep-conditioning treatment penetrates color-damaged strands and helps to renew and restore. Specially designed for hair that’s been color- or chemically-treated, this rich cream works wonders on any hair type that’s thirsty for intense moisturizers.
Helps repair vibrancy and smoothness.

So basically i only use this product in the evening if i know that i will wash my hair in the next morning. And i dont wait for any of its claimed results, i just like the way it makes my hair feels and looks.

This product is also suitable on a beach day, it will tame the hair and protect it.

OLAY Derma-Pods

Lately i have noticed that drugstore brands are getting into another level, more advanced, more creative and definitely more affective.
They started to compete with the expensive lines and i think its really good for the pocket πŸ™‚ I’m tired of spending thousand of dirhams on cosmetics and at the end i don’t get any result, at least a couple of hundreds wont be a waste.
I’ve been waiting for this product to hit our stores in Abu Dhabi, it arrived in Dubai months before and i am still pissed off about how late we always get everything.

Anyways,

The OLAY regenerist eye micro derma-pods are small bags filled with serum and it is attached with a round flat sponge.

“Advanced regeneration cell by cell for renewed, brighter skin around the eye”.
1. gently resurfaces skin appearance, cell by cell.
2. reduces puffiness.
3. fills lines and wrinkles.

outside box
21 applicators in he box
The box has 21 applicators, you just need to use it 3 times a week. Just take one applicator, squeeze it so the serum will fill the sponge, then apply it gently above the eyes and below, then massage around the eyes.
How the bag looks like filled with serum
A clean applicator
Squeeze the bag so the sponge will fill with serum
Product on sponge
My opinion: i absolutely love this product and i actually use it as an eye cream because it doesn’t feel like a serum at all, the serum is perfectly enough for both eyes and it leaves the area very soft and smooth.

I have found it at Carrefour-Marina Mall. If you found it anywhere else please let me know πŸ™‚

NARS Blush/Bronzer Trio

This is a new product released by NARS on May 1st, which i absolutely love when i first saw it, it was a gift and i believe it is a great gift and the person who got me this one was really smart. I’m so sad that NARS is no longer available in the UAE but there is a good chance that it will be brought back (God knows when and where) but i just got my hopes high after bringing back Urban Decay.
Anyways, this is a compact pouch that has NARS top bestsellers Orgasm blush (described as peachy pink with golden shimmer), Albatross highlighting blush (described as a universally flattering shade that gives luminous glow) and Laguna bronzing powder (described as diffused brown powder with golden shimmer). I had Orgasm blush before and i cannot express how much i love this blush, it works on every skin tone and it gives such a beautiful and healthy glow on the cheeks. I’ve always wanted to get Albatross and Laguna but never had a chance to go shopping at NARS again until it was gone :tears:
The pouch is a medium size and made of a hard fabric and opened by a zipper, it can be put easily in any purse.  I didnt like the fabric because it catches dirt and powder very easily (shown in the 2nd picture). The colors come in different vertical sizes, i find the blusher a bit hard to pick through a brush and not to touch the next color (Albatross), so the best one i used is either Sigma F05 or MAC 116. The highlighter and the bronzer sizes are reasonably enough for any suitable brushes.
My thoughts on the NARS Blush/Bronzer Trio..hmm..well i compared between the 2 Orgasms and i can tell that there is a difference, i’m not sure if its the first coat that doesnt give the wanted color but it didnt give me the same effect the original one did. So i just assumed that the others (Albatross and Laguna) are not as the exact originals. 
Personally i didnt see anything significant in Albatross and Laguna and i dont understand all the hype about them being bestsellers, again the colors in the pouch might not be as the originals so this could be the reason.
in cover
fabric compact with zipper
with the protection cover
comparison between the original size Orgasm blush and the one in the compact

Sigma Small Contour F05
MAC 116 Blush Brush

NIVEA Double Effect Eye Make-Up Remover

I’m not really good in drugstore products, and i dont trust them much especially when it comes to my skin. And i’ve been looking for years for a replacement to my CHANEL Demaquillant Yeax Intense  Eye Make Up Remover but so far its the best one i’ve used.
When i saw the NIVEA VISAGE Double Effect Eye Make-Up Remover on the shelf i thought to myself that the packaging looks pretty decent which is why i bought it, and i thought to myself, and prayed a little, that it might finally be THE replacement for my CHANEL one..but it didnt..
The product is not bad and it does a great job removing the make up which i suffer using other brands, when i apply the formula on a cotton it glides smoothly on my eye and removes make up very well, i dont have to rub very hard and it doesnt take long for the eye make up to be removed. I even tried the most hard mascara i’ve got so far and it removed it very easily..
Its only problem, and my problem with most of the brands, that the solution burns my eyes, i cannot quite understand why. I’ve tried so many products and it always happen to me..it could be my eyes that are too sensitive..
When i went back to my CHANEL i felt so relieved..its the smoothest eye make up remover i’ve ever used so far and its very gentle on my eyes. I absolutely love it..

Sigma Dare, Bare, Flare Palettes

I’m so excited that i will be reviewing the new Sigma palettes Bare, Dare and Flare in my own way. I’ve been anticipating these palettes before they were launched. I even put an alarm on my calendar so i wont forget the launching date, funny thing that my day started before the USA day so i had an early alarm, by the evening i was able to place my order. 
Each palette has its own cover, the palettes are very impressive and the quality is really good. It has a mirror inside and double sided brushes which is why i love the palettes more. I’m very obsessed with make up brushes and they come in the real quality of Sigma brushes not like MAC limited editions which are made with very cheap bristles, never the real deal.
I believe i took enough pictures of the palettes so probably the pictures will speak and explain more and better than i do.
With the covers
Without the cover
The Sigma palettes
Sigma Flare palette is the only palette between all that mixed two different colors, purples and greens. The other two mostly tend to stick to one color shading. I dont see any medium tones colors, all darks or lights and two vibrant main colors (Oversee and Allure) which i think the looks will revolve around. Just mix and match with other colors to have different looks.
Sigma Flare palette
E40 brush: tapered blending brush. This brush is supposed to be an equivalent of MAC #224 which i use for applying eye concealer. But this brush is bigger and more fluffier. I didnt find a proper use for it until now except for blending to soften out the edges of an eyeshadow.
E40 brush
E55 brush: eye shading brush. I talked about this brush before for applying pigments, loose eyeshadows or regular eyeshadow for all over lid. Its really good but its a bit bigger than its almost equivalent MAC #239. The bristles are softer though.
E55 brush
The Flare palette has two outstanding colors, Allure and Oversee. Allure isnt as velvety as Oversee so maybe i like the second one more.

Sigma Dare palette, is one hot palette. I love the colors, the colors are reasonable, nothing too much or too weird but they’re very alive. I can see alot of really nice colors. Maybe this palette is the most wearable between all. The colors are very velvety except for Shout (yellow) which is matte.
Sigma Dare palette
E45 brush: small tapered blending brush. I’m not sure what to say about this brush, i dont like it, i dont even like the MAC’s version (#226 discontinued as i heard), its used to apply and blend color in the crease area which i usualy do with the E25 or MAC 227.
E45 brush
E20 brush: Short shader brush. This is one handy brush, it will save your life applying color on the lashline. I love this brush and i have two of them. I dont think i need more, i use one for light colors and the second for dark colors, in case i’m using both in one look.
E20 brush
Shout is the most obvious outstanding color, i’m so into yellow eyeshadows this season, i love how daring they are and most people get scared or hesitant using one. We shouldn’t always take the color as it is, we can always lighten,darken or blend the color that will eventually be very wearable.
Now this is the Bare palette, honestly i am not very impressed with it, and the colors are very “regular”, i couldnt even find an outstanding color. There isnt any reason in putting 2 black eyeshadows, one is shiny and the other is matte, maybe because i am not very good with black that’s why i didnt appreciate it. The brown colors could be close of being my favorite, Act and Command are really nice, but again nothing outstanding or wowy. I much prefer the Urban Decay Naked palettes and i absolutely went gaga over it, the colors are simply stunning.
Sigma Bare palette
E25 brush: blending brush. This maybe my favorite Sigma brush, i believe i have like 4 or 5 of them. The E45 is very handy and mostly used for blending.
E45 brush
E30 brush: Pencil brush. This is a pencil brush, it looks a bit weird in this palette, i didnt like the cutting of the bristles, its not neat, but it will do the work.
E30 brush

The palettes are bulky
Things i love about the palettes: There is variety in the colors, and i am talking about the Flare and Dare palettes, the colors are pretty wearable, they didnt just add colors randomly, you can use two or three colors in one look and you can just mix and match. The texture is velvety and this is my favorite, the payout is really good but not with all colors. The quality of the palette/box is good, i am impressed, i love the color and design of the palettes.
Things i hate about the palettes: when i opened the palette there were fallouts around the colors (obvious in some pictures), they werent broken or cracked or anything and it does happen in some of the eyeshadow palettes, but i hate when this happen when i first open a new item. I was disappointed in the Bare palette, it is not the most wearable naked/bare palette and i’ve seen way better, the colors are very regular. The palette/box is a bit bulky.

Shelf Life of Make Up

This is a very important topic to talk about and most people dont pay attention to it. I am not very good at it, because i have alot of make up and i dont wanna throw anything especially if its discontinued or limited edition, i’d rather keep it forever (not necessarily using it) than stick to the shelf life. Bad i know!!
Now its important to check the expiry date of each item, and always check the container or the box before opening it. You will usually see a picture of an open container with a number inside it like 12M or 24M. This means that this item is best used within 12 months or 24 months from the date of opening the jar, pay attention, its opening the jar and not buying the product! Most products do tend to stay for a long time in the stores shelves before you buy it, and there is nothing harm about it except of its been there for 10 years!!

Foundation bottle marked 12M
Tinted moisturizer marked with 18M

 My tip is, for example you just bought a foundation in a bottle and just opened it, stick a label on the foundation bottle marking the date of the opening, so you will know after months or lets say a year if you’re still safe to use the foundation or not..

Most probably it will not cause you anything if you used it after the marked date, but dont way exceed the limit date. If you kept on using it for a long time after the marked date it will probably cause your rash or irritation. So better be safe than sorry.
Regarding mascara, this product might be the only cosmetic that doesnt last long, usually its safe life duration is 6 months, so its better to throw it away once you exceed the period. But for me and since i use mascara almost daily i tend to finish it quickly, so i’m pretty sure i’m safe in mascaras.
(I tried so hard taking a clear shot, the mark is so small that my current camera didnt take it clearly but it says 6M).
Mascara with a 6M mark
Now for lipsticks, lipliners and eyekohl and such creamy stuff, they usually last 2-3 years but always use your nose! When you start sensing a weird smell stop using it, it probably started to rot. If you have doubted, just a small doubt, then in most cases you’re probably right.

Lip tint marked 12M
Concealer marked 24M
Cream highlighter marked 24M
Eye pencil marked 12M
Powder stuff could last very long, until now i havent faced a problem with old eyeshadows or blushes, but some of them (probably cheap stuff) tend to change a bit on the surface and feels like rocks are mounting. The color payoff wont be the same..here you would know that its time to throw it away.

Blush marked 18M
At the end, always use your senses, if you doubted a little bit then stop using it. IF you really liked the color and its no longer available in market try to find a dupe before throwing it away, it will make you feel better πŸ™‚
Example Indian Pink by NYX is dupe for MAC Ever Hip (from Give me Liberty of London collection)


MAC Ever Hip
NYX Indian Pink