This is a well written post on a topic very close to my own heart. It’s very unfortunate that some companies go for the big bucks instead of protecting innocent animals. Why on EARTH would anyone want to do that when there is clearly no need. And worst of all.. Just for vanity. ~Monique

the beauty shortlist

 

Under Chinese law, all “human cosmetics” sold there must be tested on animals first.  So a British or American beauty brand, e.g., which launches in this lucrative (no, very lucrative!) market risks getting its “Leaping Bunny” logo taken away.

Urban Decay and Dermalogica set foot in China earlier this year but pulled out quickly (in the process Dermalogica lost their leaping bunny logo very recently, but to be fair, they have withdrawn from China and they do not test on animals).  The problem is, even if your products are NOT tested on animals in Europe, the USA or wherever they’re made, once you enter Chinese territory you’re playing by Chinese rules. And therein lies the Chinese takeaway effect: Brand goes into China, Leaping Bunny logo gets taken away.

L’Occitane, Yves Rocher and Caudalie (and big-in-America cosmetics range Mary Kay) are among those who can no longer use…

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Read-the-Label: Yaby Cake Liner

I’ve heard Yaby cake liner has great colour pay off because the high level of pigmentation! The ingredientlist contains the following:

Talc, Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Sorbitan Monooleate, Isopropyl Palmitate, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, BHT.
May Contain: Iron Oxides, Ultramarine Blue, Ferric Ammonium Ferrocyanide, Chromium Hydroxide Green, FD&C Red No.40 Al Lake, FD&C Yellow No.5 Al Lake, FD&C Blue No.1 Al Lake.

Talc, otherwise known as hydrated magnesium silicate, is a mineral which can absob oils. It is also known to be a filler and a thickening agent.
Mica is a group of crystallized minerals that naturally occur in thin, separated sheets. It is used as pigment in most mineral makeups (and many other products like eyeshadow, blushes and powders) to give it colour and to add a luminescent shine. The colour of mica ranges from pale green to black, as well as colourless. Mica has a nearly weightless and silky texture. It can also be used as a thickening agent and it can be the ingredient that most people with oily skin dislike: it can interact with the oil in the skin, making the colour look darker and shiny even. It also enhances wrinkles and fine lines.
Titanium Dioxide, also known as Titanium white, Pigment white 6, or CI77891, provides the enhanced coverage and a matte finish. It can also act as sunscreen and as a thickening agent. Because of it’s gentleness, it is great to use around the eyes.
Sorbitan Monooleate is an emulsifier, keeping this formula together. Isopropyl Palmitate, derived from palm oil,  is a moisturizer and thickening agent.
Then we have methylparaben and propylparaben, two very safe and effective preservatives (do use sunscreen!) and BHT, Butylated hydroxytoluene, another preservative. It is an anti-oxidant with antiviral properties.

Then, on to the “may contain” section. Keep in mind that the amount of product in this section maybe be too low to do anything other than provide the product with a color. So, for instance, Iron oxide, would not provide any sunprotection or thickening properties. It just gives a color. Which color I do not know, since iron oxide is a group of compounds with iron and oxygen in it. Ultramarine blue gives a blue color, as does Ferric Ammonium Ferrocyanide. Chromium Hydroxide green is green, obviously. FD&C Red No.40 Lake is red. FD&C Yellow No.5 Al lake is yellow and FD&C Blue No.1 Al Lake is blue.

I haven’t spotted the texture in person yet, but it does look similar to eyeshadow to me. The only thing that is different is the amount of talc and mica in it. Those two ingredients are known to thicken products, and I wonder if that’s what gives the eyeliner that cake-like texture.

Until next time,

Dymphy

Review: Morrocan Oil

I actually had been eyeing the Morrocan Oil serum for a while but at almost €40 I found the full size bottle a bit too expensive to experiment with. Call me stingy. So when this set became available at almost the same price, and I was also at a time in my life where I was in the market for trying out a new shampoo/conditoner set, I thought why not?

This is the set: and let’s be honest I’m a sucker for special limited edition beauty and makeup bags so this one really got me. How cute is that?

Besides the cute bag, the set contains a full size (250 ml) shampoo and conditoner and a trial size (25 ml) of the Morrocan Oil Treatment which is what the system revolves around. 25 ml turns out to be a pretty good size for a product that I will only use 2 drops of for my whole head of hair. I have medium length hair fyi so this should last me a good while.

The shampoo: one thing I love about this: it smells absolutely DIVINE. I can sniff the bottle all day long as if I were a glue addict. I have tried out this set for a few weeks, washing my hair about every 4th or 5th day, if I can get away with it. Looking at the label I have to say I wasn’t that impressed with the amount of actual Argan Oil in it. It’s pretty far down the list. Didn’t leave my squeaky clean, which is fine. But I did need the conditioner afterwards on my colored hair, otherwhise it would have resembled a haystack.

Followed the shampoo with the much needed conditioner. Again: heavenly scent, yet very little actual Argan Oil in the ingredient list. I used an amount the size of a hazelnut, if that much, and here comes my pet peeve with conditioners. Or actually 2 pet peeves:

  1. you always need waaay more shampoo ( 2 washes in one sitting) than conditioner yet the bottles are always the same size. WHY??
  2. this conditioner, like most others I’ve tried, takes forever to rinse out. And then I still felt I needed to rinse some more. Maybe it’s me, but I got out of the shower when I started to resemble a prune and decided to use even less next time. Didn’t help.

Then on to the star of the system, the one thing I had the highest hopes for.

The actual Argan Oil treatment. The ingredient is pretty far up the list, but I wasn’t that impressed with the results to be honest. My small bottle of pure Argan Oil that a friend brought back from Morrocco does way better in terms of nourishing my hair. As does my beloved Farouk Biosilk Silk Therapy (<3)

After testing a couple of times in a row I found that my hair wasn’t as easy to style afterwards as it is with several other (and much cheaper) brands. It had no more shine than usualy, which is what I bought it for in the first place.The scent is lovely and for that I would occasionaly use it again. If I had nowhere to go that particular day.
I have the feeling this is probably a good line for people with very thick and coarse hair, not if you have a fine and hard to style do.

Am I impressed: nope, sorry

Would I buy this again: again nope sorry. And I’m glad I had the good sense not to buy the full size treatment bottle. Live and learn.

Until next time!

Monique

Get the look: Eva Jinek

Event: book launch of Linda de Mol’s first photo book in 2011

A look I did for Eva Jinek, dutch tv anchor woman and talkshow host of (formerly) the NOS Network, and currently Vandaag de Dag and Eva Jinek op Zondag.

Eva, Bram and Linda de Mol together, showing the first copy of the book that Linda launched to celebrate her series of celebrity couples in Dutch magazine “Linda”. Eva and Bram received the first copy because their love affair actually began during their shoot and the interview they did for the interview.

How to achieve the look I gave Eva for this event:

Face prep:
Eva has lovely skin so only a touch of Embryolisse Lait-CrĂ©me Concentree on dry zones is sufficient. A touch of Elizabeth Arden’s 8-hour cream on the lips to moisturize and prevent flaky lips when it’s time to finish the look.

Foundation:
FACE Atelier Silicone Ultra Pro foundation in #2 Ivory along the t-zone and #3 Wheat on the outer perimeters of the face. This foundation does not require priming at all.
The new Super Foundation Brush by Royal & Langnickel applies this foundation beautifully. Buff it out with a dampned Beauty Blender for that lovely airbrushed finish.
Lightly powdered with Yaby loose powder.

Cheeks:
Nars blush in Orgasm topped with some Visiora pc104 face powder.

Brows:
filled in with Yaby brow powder in #3 and # 4 with brow shaper BC550 by Royal & Langnickel.

Eyeshadow:
Yaby es103 Golden Desert on the moving eyelid, topped with a touch of es192 Seashell for added highlights.
FACE Atelier eye pencil in black, smudged deep into the upper and lower lashline gives a smoldering look, and is set with Yaby eyeshadow es154 Abyss to make sure it lasts as long as the party does. The same eyeshadow is taken slightly up, into the outer corners of the eye to make the base of the crease definition.
Yaby eyeshadow es144 Twinkle Twinkle lightly applied into the lashline for a gently, but sexy sparkle that catches the light.
Crease definition is achieved by blending Yaby es168 Bark, es253 Milk Chocolate and es562 Royal Brown to bring out the blue in Eva’s eyes, together with es154 Abyss for depth.

Lashes:
Lots of FACE Atelier Mascara in Midnight Black on both the top and bottom lashes.
I usually do layers of mascara in between working on different parts of a face, allowing the lashes to dry completely, so I can curl them several times in between also.
The icing on the cake: a pair of half lashes by Cara K and a final coat of mascara to blend natural and false lashes seamlessly.

Lips:
Outlined and completely filled in with FACE Atelier’s lip pencil in Spice for staying power, topped off with a generous coating of non-sticky FACE Atelier Lip Glaze in Peach,
Eva’s favorite, along with Primrose.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year

It’s 2012 finally and I hope you had a lovely and safe time celebrating the holidays!

2011 was a wonderful year for a number of reasons:

  • we visited IMATS London in January to expand our range of products.
  • we launched a brand new website in July.
  • shortly after the launch we we able to start accepting all major credit cards, Mr Cash, and Direkt Ebanking for our Belgian and German customers.
  • our team was expanded with Yvonne for accounting in the summer  and Barbara for marketing and PR in the fall.
  • in September we had our own booth at the very first European Makeup Show in Berlin with the help of Debbie Bondar of FACE Atelier
  • we added beautiful new brands to the catalog: BeautySoClean, Naked Cosmetics, Stilazzi and Royal & Langnickel 

Of course the work on the store is never ending and we are currently making it even better to navigate, with better images so you can really get a better look at what you are buying.

The search for more great brands will also continue, with visits to IMATS London in February and The Makeup Show New York in May in our future.
So look out for show visit reports very soon.

Also in 2012 we will be launching a new shipping rate system that is much simpler and above all,  cheaper than the one we have now. We are still working out the details but it’s getting there!

We wish you a wonderful, prosperous, healthy and beautiful 2012!

Cheers! 🙂

cheers