24 April 2014

MAC MINERALIZE SKINFINISH IN SOFT & GENTLE


Spring is all around. We Belgians can't complain, the weather's been wonderful. I love it! For me, waking up to a blue, bright sky means I want to bring out ALL the highlighters. My matte days are over, dewy skin is what it's all about. I recently headed to the MAC Pro Store to get the much coveted - and in my case, longtime wishlisted - Mineralize Skinfinish in 'Soft & Gentle'.

Soft & Gentle is a compact powder highlighter for any part of the face or body where you want to add radiance. On the MAC website it says you could use it for an 'overall polish to the face', but I personally haven't tried because I think the product is a bit too shimmery for that. Applied on selected parts of the face (f.e. cheekbones, browbone, cupid's bow) the shimmer isn't bothering though. In fact, the metallic finish gives skin a beautiful glow that looks very ooh la la reflected in bright light.

This MSF is a baked powder and is highly pigmented. The powder's so finely milled you'll need only the tiniest amount to achieve a nice, dewy glow on the skin. The sort of 'moon pattern', like a lot of other MSFs have, is just gorgeous. In the pan Soft & Gentle looks like a mix of bronze and champagne with a peachy tone. On my face it translates mostly into a champagne colour. I wonder, have you used Soft & Gentle and gotten a different finish? I'm curious to know if other people noticed more bronze or peach according to their skin tone.

I get and will continue to get a lot of use out of Soft & Gentle. It's a beautiful highlighter that will suit anyone's skin tone. I mean, even looking at the packaging, it's just dreamy. If I'd have to give one downside about Soft & Gentle (and I hate to do that when I like a product), it would be that the glitters/shimmer can slightly sting on my cheeks sometimes. But hey, at least I'm being honest, this one's still one of my favourites though.

18 April 2014

KIEHL'S MIDNIGHT RECOVERY CONCENTRATE (#KCA LIMITED EDITION)


So it turns out I'm a pro at postponing posts I've wanted to write months ago... Kiehl's' Midnight Recovery Concentrate has been part of my evening skincare routine for 3 months now, so I thought it was time to give you my thoughts on this miracle worker.

Kiehl's sums up the Midnight Recovery Concentrate as a 'replenishing nighttime facial oil with distilled botanicals that visibly restores the appearance of skin by morning'. Basically the skin cells regenerate at night, which means the active ingredients in this elixir are most effective when applied in the evening. The promise is that your skin will repair itself overnight and you'll wake up with smoother, healthier looking skin.


IngredientsCaprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Squalane, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil, Coriander Seed Oil, Tocopherol, Lavender Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil, Linalool, Rosemary Leaf Oil, Citronellol, Geraniol, Lavandula Hybrida Oil, Cucumber Fruit Extract, Turmeric Root Extract, Limonene, Citral, Sclareolide, Rose Flower Oil, Jasmine Extract, Sunflower Seed Oil

As you can see, the Midnight Recovery Concentrate contains a lot of essential oils that can be considered good for the skin and it also has quite some anti-oxidants. The product has a lovely fragrance and although I personally think it is nice, the perfume can have an irritating effect on sensitive skin.

The lavender oil in the concentrate is supposed to be great for inflamed or irritated skin as it holds soothing qualities, plus it adds radiance. Evening primrose oil is the main ingredient that will help repair the skin barrier faster, and squalane is a natural (botanical!) emollient that will bring back moisture. Squalane is popular in cosmetics because besides its nourishing qualities, it's also age-fighting and rich in anti-oxidants. The Midnight Recovery Concentrate contains rosehip oil, which heals wounds and reduces scars. However, for those with acne-prone skin rosehip oil is something you might want to skip.


Its blue packaging is the first thing I loved about the Midnight Recovery Concentrate. I know, it's no reference for the quality of the product, but the luxurious looking packaging makes it much more fun to use. I picked up my bottle back in January, when Kiehl's was supporting Alicia Keys' Keep A Child Alive Foundation, which I wrote about *here*. For this cause, Kiehl's put a limited edition design on the bottle and for each one sold, the organisation donated to children in Singapore affected by HIV. I was more than glad to contribute to this good cause.


Now, how do you use the Midnight Recovery Concentrate?
The pipette dispenser allows you to easily dispense the preferred amount of oil onto your hand. Kiehl's recommends 2-3 drops; when it was cold in January I even used up to 4 or 5 when I felt like my skin could use some extra moisture. Once applied on cleansed skin, you can press the product into the skin or massage it in. It feels slightly tingly for a few minutes, which I personally love. You could layer the concentrate under a moisturizer, but I actually prefer not to, so the ingredients can really work their magic.


The verdict
After 3 months of having the Midnight Recovery Concentrate, I've learned to understand how it is most effective on my skin and I finally feel like I'm using it the right way. Where I would apply twice - sometimes even 3 times - a week during winter time, I've now limited using it to once or twice a week, when I feel like my skin needs it. I'm part of the 'Chosen Few' who have sensitive skin and if I apply the concentrate too often or too liberally, it will show on my skin. But if I'm careful and avoid the sensitive/irritated areas i.e. my chin and nosebridge, it's fine! I can't say the Midnight Recovery Concentrate has given me clear skin, but it has made my skin softer and brighter. I'm not sure if it will be too heavy for summer, but for now - and especially in the winter months - it's a product I enjoy using.



What do you think of thorough reviews like this, not too much to read? Is it something you'd like to see on Modest Mix more often? Let me know in the comments!

14 April 2014

5 SERIES TO WATCH


Wow, I have been a terrible blogger lately. I really need to update more often. I've been busy revising and preparing for the exams in June, combined with birthday celebrations and - gotta be honest - lazy nights. I promise I'm working on new blog posts, I just haven't had the time to finish them; will do the best I can to update more often, pinky swear.

On those lazy nights my favourite things are to do a manicure or munch on some pizza while discovering new TV series. I can get so hooked up on a show, sometimes I'll watch 4 episodes in one night (that's bad, I know). I've watched some amazing TV shows in the past 6 months, so I thought I'd introduce my top 5 to you.



How I Met Your Mother
Most of you will have heard of or seen How I Met Your Mother before. Ted Mosby tells his teenage kids the story of how he met their mother. We get to follow him and his 4 best friends on the search for the woman of his dreams.

Although I loved How I Met Your Mother, I felt like the last season bored me a little. It had beautiful parts, but most of it was a bit unnecessary for me. And then the final episode kind of ruined it… Anyway, that’s just my thoughts. I don't mean to sound negative, because How I Met Your Mother is hilarious and has made me laugh tears, it’s 100% worth watching!

Orange Is The New Black
Orange Is The New Black tells the story of Piper Chapman, a woman living in New York who is sentenced to fifteen months in prison after transporting drug money for her former girlfriend. Ten years after the facts, she is convicted and sent to the fictional Litchfield, where she has to deal with the guards, her fellow inmates and as it turns out, with her drug smuggler ex girlfriend Alex too.

Orange Is The New Black is one of those series that never gets boring. Piper is a woman in her thirties, engaged to a wonderful man and all of a sudden her life falls apart because of one stupid mistake she made years ago. What I love the most about this show, is that there's so much diversity in the characters and we get to know the other women in Litchfield and their background. Season 2 is now streaming on Netflix if I'm not mistaken, so I'm excited to watch it soon.


Breaking Bad
Walter White’s world collapses when he’s diagnosed with lung cancer. He gives up his job as a chemistry teacher and teams up with former student Jesse Pinkman to cook crystal meth, so he can collect money to secure his family’s future. Having turned to a life of crime, Walter develops into a manipulative, selfish drug baron going by the name of Heisenberg who will do anything to have his way. 

This show… I can’t begin to explain how good it is. The storyline is so captivating, it never gets boring. The character development of all main characters is also really interesting. If you’re still looking for a great series to watch, this is it.



The Carrie Diaries
The Carrie Diaries is a prequel series to Sex and the City. We meet Carrie Bradshaw as a 15-year-old high school student and see how she takes her first steps to becoming a writer. 

This is a typical teen girl series, which usually isn’t the kind of show I’d like, but I actually really enjoyed it. So far I’ve only watched the first season, and I’m really curious for the next! AnnaSophia Robb (who plays Carrie Bradshaw) seems like such a sweet, witty girl who I remembered from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and I loved her in Bridge to Terabithia.

American Horror Story
This horror series is quite different than others, as it tells a completely new concept (i.e. different characters and storyline) each season. There’s Murder House, Asylum and Coven, and the fourth season Freak Show starts in October. The first and second season were genius, but to be honest, I am not looking forward to Freak Show at all, haha. I hope it won't be full of clowns because that’s just terrifying!


Have you seen any of these series?


Image source: Google

8 April 2014

MARCH SHOPPING HAUL


I have another haul post for you today! It's kind of funny really, I've been loving everything pictured above so much lately, so this could count as a 'favourites of the month' as well? Anyway, I've done quite some shopping so let's have a look at what I've bought!


My favourite one out of the bunch is without a doubt Clarins' Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in Candy Shimmer (you can still enter my Clarins giveaway *click here*!!). This has been my go-to lip product ever since I got it. The weather's been lovely and this gel/balm hybrid just gives my lips that extra oomph. Another product from Clarins is their Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch primer, which blurs out imperfections effortlessly and creates a flawless base before applying foundation. I love this primer because it makes my skin feel really soft.

I also went to the MAC counter. I needed a new concealer after a small crisis (I had run out of Bourjois Healthy Mix and couldn't find them anywhere, so I bought a random one by Maybelline because I was in a rush. Turned out it was too orange! The horror...) and got the Pro Longwear concealer to make sure that this time the colour would match my skin tone. I got matched with NW15. Tip: The assistant said she chose a concealer with cool, pink undertones because it would do the best job at covering up my dark under-eye circles. For foundation I'd probably need NC15 (= yellow undertones). I also bought the Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle. I've wanted it for ages and after all the work I've been doing at uni lately I felt like I deserved a treat. I've been using this so much since I got it. Sunshine + Soft and Gentle = the prettiest highlight for spring. Another most used product is Bourjois Cream Blush. They're really easy to blend into the skin and the finish is subtle enough to give your cheeks that impression of a natural flush.

When I was in Eindhoven last month, I bought a bottle of Philosophy's Purity Made Simple. This multifunctional facial cleanser has been my evening make up remover/cleanser for about 2 weeks now and so far I like it.



Last but not least, I got some non beauty things too! A while back I spotted Zara's new Combined Office Citybag and fell in love. I was pretty disappointed when their famous city bags (in 2012 I think?) sold out right after I had decided I wanted one, so when I saw these I didn't hesitate and got the grey/white variation! It comes with a black clutch, which you can leave in the bag or use on its own. And speaking of the famous Zara city bag... The black bag on the right is a City Bag lookalike from Primark! It cost 15 euros so you can't expect the same lasting quality, but I think Primark did well! I've been carrying this bag around everywhere in the past couple weeks. I also bought a new Carhartt beanie. It was on my Christmas wishlist, so it was probably about time I got it. Plus it was pouring down, one of the few times in Belgium in the past month, so another excuse why I needed it!


Have you gone shopping lately?