Thursday, 27 December 2018

2018 Outro.

This was a year full of challenges, lots of joy with sprinkles of anxiety attacks because what would life be without a few breakdowns? Overall a good balanced year and I had lots of important conversations with myself about myself. I've learned to not force myself to do things I don't want to do because they're expected of me, learned to stand my ground a bit more and be OK with my sudden bursts of anger which I have worked on suppressing for many years. I've let myself be myself much more, good and bad, and prioritize the people I love while still allowing myself to disappear when I need a break.

Creatively this year has been awesome!
I've decided to just not care anymore about societies ridiculous beauty standards, I have embraced my occasional pimples, facial hair, wrinkles that have started to make their appearance, even my dark circles under my eyes (which I intend on getting fillers for in a few years but for now I'm letting them be). I find it so exhausting and terribly boring seeing all these people face tuning and trying to be living dolls without any "flaws" (or humanity). I have also realized just how much I love make-up, I have always liked it but now I truly believe that it's what I want to do for the rest of my life as well as photography. While I don't ever want to lock myself into a specific genre as I love too many different styles, as my "Best nine of 2018" proved on Instagram, I don't stress about being too plain or not living up to peoples expectations. Following the changes Instagram made earlier this year with the algorithm I feel even less inclined to please others and want to reach a point where I only do things that speak to me, for me. I feel very fortunate to have made so many wonderful friends on such a diverse platform who all inspire me to keep growing and who have been encouraging me to keep up with my not so traditional Instagram beauty feed.

In short.
I'm happy and excited for the future.
I've started setting up my bullet journal which I absolutely loved and am so happy I discovered this year. Definitely helped me keep my anxiety at bay.

And to end this "outro" I hope you feel inspired to better look after yourself by perhaps having more talks with yourself and do more of what you love in the new year, for you and less pleasing of others.

Have a peaceful end to the year and wishing you all a stronger and more confident 2019.

Sunday, 9 December 2018

Indie Beauty Holiday Gift Guide 2018.

I've been very fortunate to mainly have had positive experiences with the Indie community. These recommendations aren't listed in any particular order, they're all special to me. I have to say that the thing I love most about indies is the personal touch and communication. While I could easily have made this list 10 times longer I wanted to do my best at keeping it from turning into the next wall of text. All shop names are clickable and will take you straight to their shops. I hope this helps someone and happy shopping!

Moon Baby Shop

A small batch Etsy shop with focus on body care with jewelry pieces and lots of beautiful herbal creations. All vegan and everything is worth the money.
I have tried a lot of things from this store and I've not been disappointed. They do frequently add new things to their shop and change it up depending on the season. Awesome customer service, I ordered a gift for two friends a while back and had it gift wrapped, it looked lovely so don't hessite to ask for help.

F.A.I.R. Beauty Cosmetics

I almost own every eye shadow from this lovely lady.
She makes my favorite shimmers.
I'd also highly recommend the lip balms which have quickly become my new favorites, they are so nice and most importantly for me; they don't melt in the tube in the Zambian heat. All products are vegan and always send very well packaged. And I do have a discount code with her, use code "CYNTHIA" for 10% off (affiliate code). Also have plenty of hauls and swatches on the blog, just search on the side bar.

The Collective Cosmetics

A brand started by two make-up artists I follow on Instagram ( @beautanica and @josephwilliamrobinsonhale ).
You can absolutely tell how passionate they are for their brand in every post they make. I was very lucky to get The Mandela Effect Palette sent to me for participating in a contest they hosted (review can be found on the blog). Very pretty, all vegan and very much a brand that encourages and sparks creativity.

Espionage Beauty (formerly known as Espionage Cosmetics).

What can I say that I haven't said already about this brand?
I love this company to bits. It speaks to my geeky heart and fills me with joy. As a lifelong nerd I get constantly punched in the feels by the amazingness. Everything is cruelty free and they do a very good job at stating what's vegan. Lots of nails wraps, incredible make-up/eyeshadow compacts but be fast! A lot of the things take a bit of time to get restocked but are always worth the wait and speaking of things being sold out... They now have gift certificates! So if you have a nerdy someone you plan on gifting something, maybe just shoot them a gift certificate!
I do also have a discount link on the side bar here on the blog (desktop view) which gives you 10% off your purchase! And yes, this is a affiliate code but you can absolutely bet that whatever I make going back into the same company because nail wraps...

Twisted Wonderland Perfumery

I love everything about this indie!
Horror inspired body care? Yes please! I managed to try a few things a while back before our courier company stepped up their charges and it was all really nice stuff! I tried a few perfumes and soaps which were all very nicely balanced in fragrance. There's always new things and the inventory does change depending on the season which I personally enjoy as it keeps you interested and has you coming back.

I Am Sin

For those that don't know, I absolutely love following fetish models. Masuimi Max was one of the first latex and pointy shoes ladies I ever followed, well, stalked on Model Mayhem back when I gave modelling a short lived shot (something I aim to resume when I'm back in civilization). Anyhow, this vixen has a make-up line consisting of liquid lipsticks, eye shadows, gloss, blushes and now bronzer and highlighters! I have written a thorough review of a few of her lipsticks which you can find on the blog, just search in the side bar.

Southern Comforts

Ah, my heart.
I discovered this little company many years ago and has been a part of my health journey. I stopped using perfumes a few years prior to finding SoCo because I suddenly started getting nauseated by all perfume smells... Or so I thought! Turns out it was only to mainstream alcohol based perfumes... SoCo does oil based ones, not only do they last a lot longer but the fragrances they offer are so unique! I love every single fragrance I've gotten from them and they have been a big part of my aromatherapy journey. Forever grateful for finding SoCo.

Lethal Cosmetics

Berlin based über cool company who oozes minimalistic goth grunge (that's a thing according to them and I'm all for it).
I've been a fan since they launched as a brand and I have nothing bad to say really, all vegan and cruelty free, really exciting palettes and cool lip products which all speak to me.

Brands I want to try or have only dipped my toe in:

Linda Hallberg Cosmetics

While this is a brand I haven't personally tried many things from, not for the lack of wanting but rather because I am the way I am and I struggle with decision anxiety. Everything is at a glance very basic... But that's the beauty of it. Everything is multipurpose and the possibilities are endless! I have only seen good things about this brand and from the two things I have myself I can say the praise is justified.

Menagerie Cosmetics

Ah, in case you missed it, I'm a sucker for colour.
Menagerie Cosmetics is not only a vegan brand who makes really cool palettes and more (expanding their line in the new year) but they also donate a portion to animal welfare.

Lip Slut

A brand founded to raise funds for various charities. What's not to love? With all wearable shades who wouldn't want to whip out their lipstick tube with "Fuck Trump" in bold print? Love it!

Aether Beauty

Call me a hipster all you want but I love everything this brand is about, from their packaging being free from plastic, shadows being crystal infused and the shade range. While it might look very basic I will tell you that basic is fine! It looks like the perfect palette to keep in your travel kit as it has a bit if everything for a daily face.

Salt New York

Who doesn't want a snazzy palette to keep in their purse? On their instagrammable vanity, living room table, sink, work desk, heck anywhere?! These look so luxurious and I can not for the life of me decide which colour I want!!! I like them both but we'll see... I might just have to get them both eventually for the sake of my sanity... Lol.

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Unboxing: The Vegan Kind Beauty Box, The Monami Frost Edition.

Oh how this box has tortured me...
I've had it in view range for the past 3 weeks but not had the time to do an unboxing due to our sudden move.
Torture I tell you!

So for those who might not know, The Vegan Kind is a UK based online store which has two kinds of subscription boxes, one beauty and one lifestyle box. On top of that they have a massive vegan supermarket which they're currently doing a crowd funding campaign to expand further. Do check them out! They're my favorite snack place, I tend to place a big self care box every few months as we don't really have many vegan options here in Zambia. But enough about that for now, let's dive into the box, shall we?

Siskyn Lemon and Sea Buckthorn Brightening Night Oil.
30 ml, RRP £38.00.

I'm so excited to try this! I very conveniently ran out of my night time treatment serum so this will make an entry this evening. I will keep you updated in my Instagram stories about it once I've used it enough times to form a fair opinion.

MEMI Expert Liner.
0.55 ml, RRP £10.00.

This is so damn good!
I used it today and I have not been this happy with an eyeliner in a VERY long time. I will see how long it lasts but so far so good. Has the little shake bit inside.

Nabla Crème Eye Shadow in Utopia.
5 ml, RRP £11.00.

Fool proof shadow and a shade I see myself putting in my "slap on and go" pile. Easy to use, sets fast and I've so far slept in it face down with it still looking as fresh as when I applied it.

Natura Avocado Sheet Mask.
RRP £4.95.

Guess I'll be losing my sheet mask virginity soon...
Can't say much about it but again, will share my thoughts on Instagram stories once I've used it.

Unicorn Cosmetics Dragon Faux Silk Vegan False Lashes in Style Flammie.
RRP £9.99.

So, I don't use false lashes so these will be given away to someone who will apprentice them. They are however very pretty, nicely layered and fluffy.

Umberto Giannini Miracle Worker Serum.
75 ml, RRP £8.00.

WOHO! It has heat protection!
I rarely do anything to my hair but I do blow dry it, now, don't get any saloon images, I turn my head upside down and dry it until I look like a living troll doll. This I've used today and I'm pleasantly surprised. The fragrance did not linger, I hate fragrances in my hair... And it did what says on the bottle, what more can one ask for?

Final thoughts.

This was my first beauty box from the vegan kind and it blew me away. I wasn't expecting such a great box to be honest. I can see myself reaching for everything regularly, minus the lashes of course, and that makes me happy. I have a rolling subscription and now I'm excited to see what's in store for Christmas. I'm not expecting every box to be this crazy good but I like subscription boxes because they usually contain things I don't use, it's a nice surprise and treat for myself.

If it's still available, I highly recommend getting this one.

Hope you enjoyed my first post in a very long time!
Make sure to follow me on Instagram @cynthiaiskillikill for updates, swatches, random mini reviews playtime and shenanigans.

Friday, 19 October 2018

Life update.

So, it has been quiet here huh?
There's a few reasons for that.

Mid September we went to see a house and we liked it.
So we are moving in at the end of this month.

It has been a mission and a half.
Not too stressful because we barley have things to move which I'm so happy about!
But there has been a lot of planning, furniture designing, list making, budget planning and Halloween make-up looks.

I will probably be fully set up in the new place during the first week of November (fingers crossed).

I'm so excited to make this new place an actual home.
Our current place was a bit of a panic move as we didn't have any options and life was nothing short of chaos.

Now we're in a better place mentally and financially so we can enjoy this move and make it the smoothest move out of our 7 moves we've done in the 10 years we've been together...

Wish us luck and hope you're all enjoying the best time of the year!!! And don't forget to check Instagram! I've been having so much fun doing Halloween looks!


Thursday, 27 September 2018

Self Love and Personal Growth: Rewiring My Feelings Towards Myself.

Lately I've seen a lot of women on social media be hard on their selves... It has taken me until now, 32 years on this earth for me to start questioning the little asshole voice in my head.

I like to think that I love myself.
I like to think that I know what's best for myself.
But do I?

It is a strange thing to question a thought/voice that has been in my head for as long as I can remember, inherited in fact.
Growing up I never heard women around me speak in a positive way about their bodies. I know it has been almost like a trend to complain about "imperfections", forever comparing oneself to celebrities who probably have signed contracts which state how their bodies have to look... But we don't think about anything beyond what we see.

I'm happy to say that my body is functioning at it's best.
My whole life I've struggled with pain and aches.
I know I'm not thin enough for my hardwired image of myself as a 16 year old... But I also know that that's completely ridiculous to even think to compare myself to!

I was way more active, hormonally different and I was skinny for a reason... I barely ate! I was living on alcohol, candy and meal replacement shakes... And I couldn't figure out why I was always feeling so bad as I looked healthy... After a 10 year long health journey I'm finally healthier, I have learned so much about my body and I'm so grateful for all the knowledge I've managed to gather during this time.

Life is strange and our silly brains don't help us much when it comes to the way we feel about ourselves.

You'd think it would be easy to love your own body. That we could easily take the same advice and compliments we give our loved ones... How many times do we look at our loved ones when they ask if they look different and we can't see anything wrong with them, saying " you're crazy, you look great! Stop being so hard on yourself! ".

My goal is to get there.
To be more loving towards my body and be happy for my health.

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Haul & Review: First Cult Beauty Order!

I've been window shopping at Cult Beauty... For YEARS!
And for whatever reason never actually placed an order until this past month when there was a few things I just couldn't find locally as well as feeling the urge to treat myself a little (as if I suffer normally...).

Lucky for me there was a huge GWP filled with goodies that I wanted to get my hands on (Not featured here as I still haven't opened it). All I had to do was spend £150 which is ridiculously easy once you start looking around at home to make sure you got backups and start the whole "what do I " need"".

So for my first order I got:
A Circu-Lite Squeeze Therapy for legs.
A Body Brush.
Hand Cream.
Perfume set.
Body Cream.
Two Mascaras.
Make-up setting spray with SPF.
Texture Spray.

I've so far used everything except for the two body tools which I'm keeping in their bags until after I move next month.
I'm really exciter for them and got the brush because I've been meaning to get a dry body brush for ages due to my skin being dry in general. And the squeeze therapy thingy is just one of those things I've been eyeing for a long time... I have cellulites and orange peel skin from half my thighs and up, I can easily get away with using shorts but I've not been as active as I used to be in the past 10 years and my skin has changed. A personal preference really, I'm absolutely not ashamed of my cellulites, I've had them since I was around 12 I just want to see if there's actually any merit to this while suction thing as I want to do it on my body as a whole as I age.

So now the reviews.

Hand Cream 75ml £9.30 (on sale):
I absolutely love this hand cream.
I've been using hand creams for most part of my life and I have only come across a handful of truly effective ones in that time, this one included. I use this one at night and it makes my hands feel moisturized and not unpleasantly greasy. The fragrance is not too strong and is botanical which I personally enjoy.

Peter Thomas Roth 
Mega-Rich Nourishing Body Lotion 235ml £17.50:
I like this lotion.
Is it worth the price?
I can't really say... While it ticks the boxes of being odourless and fast absorbing I don't know if I will buy it again. I have dry skin all year round, my skin actually hurts most of the time from being dry so I tend to get rich lotions and this is a very thin consistency. A little does go a long way which it has going for it but I can't tell you how I feel about it quite yet as I've only been using it for a week and a few days. I'm the type of person who will not think twice about the money if something delivers... But I don't know in this case... I'll let you guys know in my empties later this year.

Hair by Sam McKnight 
Cool Girl 250ml £25.00:
So as I was just mentioning above, I invest in good products and I believe I have found an actually gem here.
I have very thick straight hair and my hair strands are thick and very healthy... Anyone who has healthy straight hair will know the pain of flat boring hair. Which is why I always make sure to dry it with my head up side down and I'm not happy until I look like a troll. I want texture and volume.
This is texture and a pinch of volume in a can.
I'm so impressed with how amazing my hair looks, feels and smells with this product! I don't even care about the price, this works and I need 3-4 light sprays for my hair to be transformed. I'm genuinely amazed.

Soleil Toujours 
Organic Set + Protect Micro Mist SPF 30 59ml £34.00:
Living in Zambia, where the sun always shines I need to be extra careful with sun exposure.
I turn lobster red when I'm in the sun or heat in general for more than a few minutes and my skin gets really irritated from the dry heat. So I finally got myself a spray face SPF which very conveniently also sets make-up. Feeling like a really winner with this one. Doesn't leave a residue, no weird sheen, it does smell strong when sprayed but it shouldn't be inhaled anyhow so I just hold my breath for a few seconds. Don't have anything bad to say about it. The size is generous compared to many of the setting sprays with SPF I've seen and this is one of the very few vegan ones I've come across. So far all good.

Classic Rollerball Layering Collection 5 x 5ml £18.00:
Late to the game on these!
I absolutely love these which is really surprising as alcohol based fragrances usually make me feel EXTREMELY nauseated.
I've found three favorites which I'm absolutely getting for me and the husband to share. Love that these are unisex!!!

So there you have it peeps.
That's my reviews for now and I haven't opened my mascaras as I will only do so once my current one runs out, which should be any day now.

All in all this was a successful first order.
Everything came well packed and whole.
I feel good about my purchases and they feel like an investment which is something I have to do while I'm here... Also ageing! Haha. I'm getting older and have to start looking after certain parts of me but I'm honestly really looking forward to it all.

Let me know if you have an thoughts or questions about anything! 

I'll probably do a small unboxing kind of thing of the goodie bag during the weekend that I'll keep in my highlights on Instagram for those who want to see all that (@cynthiaiskillikill).

Thank you for stopping by!
Take care.

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Haul & mini review: Ve_Cosmetics.

It's been a while since I received my most recent order from Ve Cosmetics. I had a bit of a panic as I was running low on eyeliner so thought I'd take the opportunity to get a few extra bits while I was at it.

My order this time round consisted of a mystery lipstick, Pocket Rocket liner, Feline Good liner, two Witchcraft liquid concealers which have become my favorite formula, a concealer palette and one of the new Majick brow pens. I got two little bonuses in my order as well which I was excited for, a pocket mirror (can never have too many) and a pale shadow which I'll probably be using to set my under eyes.

So while I loved all the things I ordered there was a few issues.
The lipstick (Twin Star) is very drying and applies patchy, it was quite a challenge to get an opaque lip with this one so I will stick to using this it as a liner or mixed with gloss as a bright tint. I have two other lipsticks from this brand and they are really nice so it might just be this one or the shade in general. 

As for the Majick brow pen I struggled with the usual thing one does struggle with when dealing with felt tip liners, it dries out way too fast for my liking. I really love the shade, there's no lack of pigmentation, absolutely smudge and waterproof once it dries down and the tip itself does a great job doing hair stroke like lines. Easy to fix with a drop of water and a bit of patience, patience which I unfortunately don't have for everyday use. 

Not what I expected but I'm also not upset about it. 

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

Review: The Mandela Effect Eyeshadow Palette by The Collective Cosmetics.

I wasn't sure if I was going to do a review of this palette as I didn't buy it. I always feel a bit awkward about that situation and even more as I've been a fan of Beautanica for a really long time, who happens to be one of the owners.

But then, I just said f*ck it!
I almost exclusively use indie make-up now as I find mainstream/commercial make-up incredibly boring! While indies can jump on trends over night, the big guys take months because of their vast distribution.

But enough about that, bet you didn't click your way here to hear me rant about the "big brands" and all that jazz I can rant about for actual days...

This is what it looks like inside.
There's a lot I like about this palette without going into the actual shadows themselves.
It's a sturdy package, it survived without any damage, shadows traveled safely and there was no loose pigment at all in it when it arrived to me here in Zambia. There was even a protective sheet over the shadows which I greatly appreciate as it keeps the mirror clean. The mirror, its an actual mirror which I use when I use this palette. That's a really rare thing. And bonus points for having the name shades both on under the shadows and on the back of the palette. The Collective Cosmetics is a cruelty free and vegan brand.

The Shadows:
As always I've swatched these using primers.
I used Notoriously Morbid's Glitter Adhesive for the shimmers and Darling Girl Cosmetics Primped & Primed balm primer for the mattes which is how I use shadows.
I want to see what's on the pan on my eyes, I'm not the kind that likes a "soft" wash of colour, if I wear make-up, you'll know!

Worth noting:
All the shadows from this brand are handmade so they might not always look the same/be identical. I don't know if Tune and Screaming in my palette was a fluke or not as I've seen nice payoff on others but mine are very hard and softer pigmented than the rest. I don't mind soft pigmentation personally as it's great for building shadows rather then having to blend pigment away and making a mess... Been there way too many times. But I wanted to share that as it might just be my palette.

 Memories: Stunning shimmer. This is probably the shadow I was most surprised by as I didn't have any expectations.
Bright: This is perfection. I've used it as highlighter, topper and on it's own, always looks amazing.
Whispering: Glitter adhesive is a must or you'll miss the whole point of this shadow!
 Tune: Beautiful orange. Easy to work with even though it's very hard pressed in my palette.
2010: Beautiful gold, can't go wrong with this one.
Screaming: Beautiful red, a true red that doesn't blend pink. Again, mine was a bit hard but totally fine for building.
Clone: Duo-chrome red base with green shift. Pretty but probably the only shade I don't care for. 
Coup De Etat: Another star in this palette. Beautiful and easy to work with.
Quiet: A matte black. Very pigmented but can get patchy depending on your base but overall one of the better black shadows I've used.

Overall a beautiful palette.
The only disappointment was Clone but that's mainly because I have quite a collection of this type of shadows which I'm happy with. In would absolutely have wanted a satin pink or aubergine shade in its place. The shimmers preform well, no problems at all with any of the shadows if used over the appropriate kind of primer. I must confess that I have not used these shadows without primer but I just don't do that as my lids are oily and everything vanishes within the hour if I don't prime.

Favorites are definitely Bright, Memories and Tune, even with a hard texture pan it's a nice shade for my collection that I didn't have. I've used it a few times and while it is a softer pigmented shadow it delivers.

That will conclude this review.
Let me know in the comments if you've tried anything from this new indie brand! I'm really curious to hear about your experience with Tune and Screaming as well as knowing what single pans you'd recommend!

Make sure to subscribe to my newsletter and check my Instagram @cynthiaiskillikill

Friday, 17 August 2018

Haul & Review: I Am Sin.

I finally placed an order from I Am Sin.
I Am Sin is owned by Masuimi Max, one of the first pin-ups/alternative/fetish models I ever followed on social media. She's been a big inspiration of mine for years, I could write an essay about my gratitude for her but I'm going to stop myself and spare you all.

Review at the bottom but make sure to read the picture captions.

Vegan and Cruelty Free.

The shades I got. Each lipstick is 5.7 g/0.2 oz.
Comparison: SugarPill Liquid Lipsticks: 5.4 ml/0.18 oz,
Colour Pop Liquid Lipsticks: 3.2 g/0.11 oz,
Kat Von D Liquid Lipsticks: 6.6 ml/0.22 oz.


Applicator, it's a stiff doe foot with minimal fluff.
This is actually how I prefer my applicators for direct application, it gets the right amount of product for a full lip application (for my medium sized lips). I've not needed to use a brush with these which have automatically made them staples in my purse.

Left to Right: Lady, Boss and Bite.

Left to Right: Lady, Boss and Bite.

The review:

So fangirling apart, these are probably my favorite lipsticks to date. The formula is like nothing I've tried before. It doesn't feel like it dries down but it doesn't transfer, it's the weirdest thing! By far the most comfortable transfer proof lipstick I've worn to the point that I get surprised walking past a mirror and seeing myself wearing lipstick! They're really long lasting and I've tested them hard. They do not stain while drinking but do wear off with grease as they all do. Doesn't get horrible when touching up (cracking and dry) but I'd recommend using your finger for a touch up as it applies thinner and you can just dab on where you need without caking it on the old application (I do this for all my liquid lipsticks). They apply beautifully, I ALWAYS prep my lips with a gentle scrub and a plumping balm as a mask for a few minutes before wiping it off for a lipstick. I also blot away excess and these wear beautifully as a stain or faded edges Korean style.

I'd highly recommend these to fellow liquid lipstick lover.
But prep is crucial as is with all liquid lipsticks in my opinion.
Lady is the shade I've worn most followed by Boss and lastly Bite which is gorgeous but I'm not quite as exciting... The most I go out is for grocery shopping soooo.... Yeah.

I'm excited to see the line continue to grow and there are some gorgeous blushes I have in mind for a future order...

Let me know in the comments if you've tried anything from I Am Sin and what you recommend!

Thursday, 16 August 2018

Haul: Another F.A.I.R. Beauty Cosmetics order.

Ah, nothing like a fresh batch of GORGEOUSNESS!!!

I'm now an affiliate use code: CYNTHIA at the checkout for 10% your order. Click picture to get to F.A.I.R. Beauty Cosmetic's shop.

I've been a fan of F.A.I.R. Beauty Cosmetics from the beginning and she recently celebrated 3 years! Yay! During this anniversary celebration there was of course a little limited edition shadow released... I know, I know, I just finished a post about quitting limited editions. But this was a GWP!

I placed an order to also catch up a bit on all the new shadows that have come to be since I ordered last, quite some time ago...

These are the gems I ordered this time round as well as a The Walking Dead (because gore) make-up pouch because handbag organisation is essential for avoiding "hand in the bag rummaging".

Keep your eyes on my Instagram feed (@cynthiaiskillikill) as I'll y using the shadows over the coming week in various looks.

Sunday, 12 August 2018

Haul & review: Essence Cosmetics.

Early last month the husband had to go to South Africa for work, which I of course took advantage of and sent him on a Drugstore mission. His first attempt was a failure as I asked him to get me some bright nail polishes... He returned with a royal blue, dusty rose and a nude begie/brown... (I asked him to keep the last one) So back he went and returned the other ones as he now had a specific list of items to get me rather than me assuming he pays attention to what I use... Silly me!

I asked for a setting spray, banana powder, clear brow mascara and the polishes seen in the picture.

There's only two cruelty free brands in drugstores as far as I know in South Africa, Physicians Formula and Essence Cosmetics. If you live in Cape Town you can get a hold of NYX.

French manicure beautifying nail polish in the shade Girl's Best French.

Brushed Metals Nail Polish in the shade Can't Stop The Feeling.
One thing these polishes have in common is a very thin formula, you need a minimum of 3 coats plus top coat if you don't want them flaking off within a couple of hours of them drying.

The Gel Nail Polish in the shade Dare It Nude.
I'm not a fan of this formula.

As for my review, I'm underwhelmed.
The banana powder is alright, I was mainly looking for a substitute to the yellow powder in the Kat Von D Shade + Light Eye Palette as I'm phasing it out, I love the products I have from that brand and will use them up but I don't agree with the front characters ethics and I've boycotted brands for way less before.

"You get what you pay for" applies for the rest.
Safe to say I'm over drugstore buys, I can make anything work for me but I shouldn't need to battle to get a product to work the way I expect/need it to. I rather spend more.

I have however not tried the Glow to go setting spray yet as I'm saving it for once I finish my Pixi Fixing Mist.

Wednesday, 8 August 2018

Self love and personal growth: Learning to not guilt myself and taking my own advice.

Lately something has started to click in me.

I've become very aware of my patterns of neglect and have begun to give myself a breather if I don't feel like doing whatever I wrote on my to-do list in the morning.
I'm allowing myself to do what I want in the moment without making myself feel bad. I just promise myself to get back to it when I have a better plan.

This has helped me so much with my anxiety, I can actually enjoy my days and focus on a few chores without feeling sick to my stomach for not mopping or cleaning the windows or whatever task that seems ridiculous to stress about in retrospective. I can just chill. This is so new to me... And I never saw how damaging my old ways were until now.

I'm working hard on being my own sound board.
Trying to give myself advice I'd give to someone I care about, which as stupid as it sounds, I wasn't.
I think we've all been there, telling a loved one not to be too hard on themselves, that things will be fine, just relax, take some time to reflect etc. But we never take our own advice, at least not until very recently.

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Haul: Darling Girl Cosmetics , second edition.

It's bedtime for me as I write this so I'm going to keep it short.
I wasn't in need of make-up and then magic appears in my Instagram feed (@cynthiaiskillikill). Damn it Susan!

So I ordered four of the new pressed mattes.
I'm sad and disappointed in myself for not getting them all.
I got a gloss which is amazing, will be searching it later this week.
Also ordered a new multi chrome thingy majiggy, which is ridiculous and I am so excited to get to wear more.

Everything is of high quality, the products are insanely pigmented and I actually swatched them without primer which I don't normally do as I can't wear shadows without so I don't want anyone thinking they're insanely pigmented if I have primer on.
I'm so impressed with the mattes, I was way too excited and had no self-control which resulted in a heavy dip into the brown shadow... I was not expecting it to be so intense! Tried to fix it by adding more mattes and made a mess. I'll try again tomorrow...

The GWP is Dark Horse, it's gorgeous!
And then a blush which I'm excited about as I have started using a lot more of it lately.

But that's my haul!
I'm off to bed before I go off rambling about food.

Gamma Ray as eyeliner topper.
See the shift?!

Saturday, 28 July 2018

Haul: MeruMaya, Integrative Effective Skincare.

It's been far too long since I had some MeruMaya products in my routine. The first product from this brand I tried and absolutely loved was the "Everything Everywhere Beauty Oil". I bought the full size once my sample ran out and then over the past two three years I've been on a continuous search for the perfect products for MY perfect routine. I feel like I'm getting there and my skin is looking its best, but enough about that, let's get into the haul!

First off, basics.
It's winter here so hand cream is an absolute must in this dry dusty time of the year, SPF is a huge plus, which to my surprise is really unusual in hand cream! 
Second, Melting Cleansing Balm. I'm a balm junkie. And I don't feel like my skin has been cleaned without a good balmy massage at the end of the day. Really excited to try this.

I got two " Overnight Recharge Night Cream" as there was a half off deal when I placed my order. Can't have too many firming and lifting creams! Finally in my thirties and I am going all in on skin pampering products.

Finally, toners.
I strongly believe in toners, I personally feel the difference in my skin when I haven't used one and these two excite me a lot.
I got one Gentle Exfoliating Toner and one Treatment Toner.

Caroline Hirons did a brand overview 8 months ago.
(Will open in a new tab/window)

I'll report back with a review as I use the products but won't be too soon as I'm working through quite a bit of products right now. 

Let me know if you've tried anything from this brand and what you though of it!

Wednesday, 25 July 2018

Review: Bybi Beauty (part 3).


I am completely sold on this product!
I have almost finished my 30ml tube after two - three months now. It's a very thick balm which quickly absorbs into the skin without leaving a film. It smells amazing. Everything from Bybi Beauty smells amazing, not synthetic/artificial fragrance but rather like opening a blender full of tropical fruit. 

I will absolutely buy this again, I will probably have to get the bigger size as I use it as a face, body, foot, hand and what not balm. Super pleased and can't say enough good things about this balm, highly recommend.


This one is tricky.I really wanted to like it but it really doesn't fit my skincare routine. I exfoliate twice a day with a flannel as I cleanse my face and that's all I ever need. This again, smells great but I don't think I'll purchase it. I can see people liking it, it leaves the skin nice and not stripped. I did prefer applying it on a dry face and massaging it in with damp hands then wetting them again for another good rub. Don't have anything bad to say about it, just doesn't fit my range right now. 

I still have the mask to review but it will be a long time before I can even justify opening it as I have a lot of masks to go through right now.

Thursday, 19 July 2018

Make-up: Quitting the limited edition hype.

Big breath in, hold, and release...

So, I've decided to quit the hype.

What am I on about?

I'm going to stop buying limited edition make-up.
I've not really been one to buy many limited edition products to start with but when I do, I hoard them...
I will absolutely allow myself buying limited edition tools, bags and anything else that isn't a consumable.

I'm just over it.

I hate the lack of information surrounding limited editions and I really struggle with making decisions without a lot of material to research... Which is always the case.

Totally triggered by the Dose of Colours x iluvsarahii collaboration. I love it but there's no freaking information!!!
And my crazy ass starts stressing and it puts me in a bad mood.
So not worth it over make-up...
No more limited editions coming this way.

I'm just going to stick to regular stocks.
And let's be honest, it's not a loss, there's a hell of a lot of make-up out there I want... But always gets pushed aside due to hype and sales and what not.

So I'm starting today, committing to finishing my few limited edition items and stop being a hoarder of things I really like.
Such a stupid mentality...

Monday, 16 July 2018

Current go-to face (July 2018)

We're in the middle of winter in the southern hemisphere and I couldn't be happier!
This is the time of the year I get to slap on make-up without having to check on it every 10 minutes because of the humidity/heat. Being a make-up lover in a warm country really sucks... But I'm too stubborn not to wear it.

I didn't realize that I had a go-to face again.
I've been playing with lots of things in previous months but not done much shopping for what I'd consider fun things,it's mainly been basics such as mascara, concealer and primers I've been looking for.

My go-to fave has been consisting of the following:
Winged liner, I use a black liner as close as possible to the lash line then I top it with an eyeshadow with a cool shift or sparkle before it sets completely.

I haven't been doing eyeshadow on my lids for an unknown reason... Instead I've been focusing on my lower lash line.
I've been trying to use up as many products as possible lately and just adding a pop of colour on a daily basis has really helped me make space... Can soon justify getting some fun things (not that I don't have things on the way as I type this... But sshhhh let me have my moment of false pride).

Obviously still using highlighters.
Highlighters is the one thing I don't skip.

As for lips I've been going bolder as my eye looks have been more basic. To my surprise, I've managed to work through two tubes of lipstick in the past month alone.
I've become one of those people who don't feel awake until I put lipstick on... So yeah, need to look at getting a few now as I've never been the one to have more than 10 at a time.

What I've been looking like lately:

Check Instagram (@cynthiaiskillikill) for full make-up details.

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Haul: Ve_Cosmetics.

This is my second order from Ve Cosmetics.
My first order consisted of lots of various foundation samples as I was still on the hunt for my perfect foundation. 
While I did like the foundation formulas I just realized that I love to engage in a lot of face planting into my pillow, puppy and husband... All which don't need make-up smears.
So I gave up on the foundation quest.

But since I did like the feel of the foundations I thought I would try the concealers instead!

But first I had to get more bath bombs!
I NEED a relaxing bath a day or I never fall asleep.
These bath bombs are nothing crazy with glitter and what not.
They're just pleasant aroma therapy treats 

I really have been enjoying the first liquid lipstick I got in my previous order and wanted another one. 
But due to the overwhelming amount of choices I went with a mystery lipstick! Which I think is genius!!!
I got this matte good shade, called Gold (obviously).
Not really what I'd wear all over my lips but it has been cool to use as a base and also as eyeshadow and eyeliner.

And then finally the concealers.
Super happy with these! The texture is great, doesn't dry down to crust and the mix of 2 & 3 is a perfect match for my pale face.
All round a successful order.

Top to Bottom:
Unicorn Too Liquid Lipstick in Gold.
Witchcraft Liquid Concealer in shade 3.
Witchcraft Liquid Concealer in shade 2.

Monday, 9 July 2018

BuJu Life: July.

Well, we're in the 7th month of the year.
Like... Wtf? A bit late but time has been a real thief lately! I don't even notice it... And poof! Gone!

Main spread:
Left: I've been going through my pictures and found a bunch that don't fit in my albums which I thought I'd use in my bullet journal. Here's the first picture I developed in a darkroom when I was 16. Below that I have a new tracker, it tracks reason/gaming, mindful practice and workouts. 
Right: Goals for the month and a space for random notes.

Left: Expenses. Nothing special here just a space for me to have a better visual of our expenses and what I need to keep in mind for coming months.
Right: My body tracking is basically a place I write a little something about how I've been feeling physically and mentally.

Left: Tasks, my little squats and push ups tracking, also a picture printed with my new toy; The Sprocket.
Right: Daily scheduled and more space for tasks.

And that's it!
Nothing crazy this month, still figuring out what I need and actually use rather than wasting space on unnecessary trackers and doodles.

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Fashion: My capsule wardrobe goals.

I've seen the light!

I used to be one of those people who never wore anything more than once, maybe twice out during my clubbing days. I had not one, but three rooms where I stored my clothing. It became a big problem as I bought more than I would get rid off.

When my string of moves began with me going to live with my love, it quickly became a weird thing in my head. I missed my clutter so much! I moved with only 3 suitcases of clothing. Long story short, it has taken me just over 10 years to "cure" myself from the ridiculous consumer heavy mentality of having more makes you happy.

I have now decided to cut down and have set a goal, it will absolutely be my dream wardrobe with investment pieces rather than fast fashion.

My goal is for my wardrobe to consist of:

• 4 Shawls, I use them a lot around the house when it gets a bit cooler.
• 3 pairs of jeans, I want one skinny, one boyfriend style and a pair of longer baggy short style jeans.
• 10 Basic tops, a mix of t-shirts, tanks and strappy tops in neutral shades such as black, grey, khaki and beige. I can't have white, I'm a slob and always stain everything.
•  6 pairs of shoes, one pair of basic black sneakers, a basic peep toe stiletto, basic everyday ballerina, a pair of running shoes, biker boot and a flashy heel to perk up a basic jeans look.
• 4 Scarves, I love scarves!!! They just make me happy and change an outfit with minimal effort.
• 4 Dresses, I want two wrap dresses (think DvF), a black structured cocktail dress and a maxi dress.
• 4 Cardigans, plain ones with no agenda. Simply to keep warm when I need it.
• 10 Customized t-shirts, I can't imagine a life without my favorite cut shirts.
• 2 Blazers, one black and a checkered one, probably brown or grey.
• 4 Shirts, one basic white cotton shirt, and the rest faux silk shirts for added texture and versatility in my wardrobe.
• 4 Skirts, One flowy maxi summer skirt, one pencil, a flowy evening skirt and a smart casual jeans maxi for evenings/cooler time of the year. I don't really do short skirts anymore, used to love them but prefer shorts now as my body insists on sitting with one foot on the chair...
• 4 pieces of lounge wear, probably sweat pants and a hoodie or something.
• 4 bags, (not including luggage) one daily cross body, a small evening clutch, a shopper and a messenger or backpack for my gadgets.
• Jewelry, Underwear and socks is where I can go nuts.

I really think a small wardrobe is freeing.
I'm really excited about achieving this. It also just allows me to spend more time on my make-up as clothing will be more basic and not competing with my face. All round wins with this project.

I'm trying my best to help myself minimize anxiety in my everyday life. I feel like this will help a lot. And let's be honest, we reach for about half of our wardrobe...

Saturday, 23 June 2018

Empties: Spring 2018.

This post always sneaks up on me as I suddenly can't close my "empties box" anymore... So here we go again! Hope you enjoy some of my trash.

By: Essence
What is it: Make-up Fixing Spray.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I don't mind it for my makeup playtime but I don't think this does anything, I'd rather buy a quality product I can use daily.
By: Dr. Hauschka.
What is it: Two Facial Toners and a Soothing Cleansing Milk.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I hated the Cleansing Milk, didn't like the result and smelled too much of alcohol. As for the toners, I've had better.
By: Sand & Sky
What is it: Detoxifying + Brightening Clay Mask.
Will I repurchase: Fuck no.
Why: This shit hurt my face so bad. There's a warning on the product which should have been enough for me to not use it at all. Not for me. First time in my life I've had a reaction.
By: Pixi
What is it: Glycolic Acid Toner.
Will I repurchase: Yes.
Why: I feel like it does something to my skin, I only use it at night and my skin has absolutely become more glowing since I started incorporating this into my routine.
By: Pixi
What is it: Glow Booster/Primer.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I didn't mind it, it's beautiful on its own and mixed into things but I have other "glow" products I prefer right now.
By: Skin Laundry.
What is it: Antioxidant, Vitamin, Peptide Night Serum.
Will I repurchase: Yes.
Why: I wasn't expecting anything from this to be honest but I really enjoyed it because it felt like it was doing something. Definitely helped with my redness overnight.
By: Yes To Cotton.
What is it: Micellar Cleansing Water.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I've used better and cheaper. I like the idea of the pump but I also don't care.
By: This Works.
What is it: Deep Sleep Pillow Spray.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I did get a second one already which I'm using. I sleep like shit, I wake up at least 10 times a night and I try anything that's not classified as a drug to help me relax. While I did enjoy the aromatherapy aspect of this, I don't believe it did much as it fades too fast.
By: Pixi
What is it: Minty/Plumping Lip Gloss.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: While I absolutely loved this product and feel like I've found something good I feel like I need to break it off now before I get stuck. I love lip products and have too many things to try before committing!
By: Barry M.
What is it: Waterproof Eyeliner.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: This worked fine for about a week and a half then it just lost pigment, it didn't dry our at all, just no pigment.
By: The Organic Pharmacy.
What is it: Vitamin C and Papaya Mask.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I did like this a lot, it did gently exfoliate and give results but I have tried better. Pleasant smell as well which is always a bonus as you gotta keep it on your face for a while.
By: Dirty Hippie Cosmetics
What is it: Hemp Lip Balm
Will I repurchase: Yes.
Why: This is my everything balm. It is so damn good to keep around at all times. I was having a lot of dry skin last year and this helped me through it. Lovely texture which feels nurturing and moisturising.
By: Colour Pop Cosmetics.
What is it: Lippie Stix.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I didn't finish these, I absolutely hated these shades on me. They made me look old, which I've never experienced before and since... Shades were Brink and Goal Digger.
By: Notoriously Morbid Cosmetics.
What is it: Metallic Liquid Lipstick (sample).
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I loved this formula, the shade was Ethereal and was so flattering. I'd absolutely recommend it but I will personally not buy it again as it's not vegan.
By: Spectral Spirits.
What is it: Shimmering Body Dusting Powder.
Will I repurchase: Yes.
Why: I love this. Nirvana is my favorite fragrance and I used this as a part of my nighttime routine during the summer on my body. It's so pretty and fine. Just a good pampering treat.
By: Dirty Hippie Cosmetics.
What is it: Finishing Powder with SPF.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I don't really use powder. This was a nice powder when I used it but I just didn't reach for it. As someone with dry skin I rather keep my glow through the day instead of mattifying it.
By: Baby Bat Beauty.
What is it: Gel Liner.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: While this was a great liner for the time I could use it I think I personally prefer a liquid liner. The container is also not the best, it doesn't close tightly but I don't know if that was just for me... Haven't asked the company.
By: Dirty Hippie Cosmetics.
What is it: Mineral Eyeshadows.
Will I repurchase: Yes.
Why: These lasted me FOREVER! It's 5g of product in each and I'm surprised I even managed to get through these as e rate I did. Both fool proof and awesome to use with mixing mediums as I would for some kickass eyeliners.
By: Dirty Hippie Cosmetics.
What is it: Mineral Lipstick.
Will I repurchase: No.
Why: I did really enjoy this while I was using it but then it kind of became a forgotten item at the back of my collection. It's really pigmented.
By: Super Drug Calm Skin.
What is it: Hydrating serum & moisturiser.
Will I repurchase: Yes.
Why: I love this. It's probably not the most amazing thing out on the market but I really enjoy how it feels as a finisher to my skincare routine at night. It plays nice with my other products so I'm happy.