Friday 31 January 2014

Operation Use It Up

Just in time for Chinese New Year, I managed to clear out this bumper crop of products, which were used up between December and January.

1. Pixi Glow Tonic: I hauled back four bottles from London to Geneva after reading the online raves sparked by Caroline Hirons' recommendation in this blog post. Pixi has literally not been able to keep this on the shelves since Hirons wrote about it. It used to be available only in their flagship store in London but it recently became available on their UK and US websites in a new clear bottle packaging. The UK website ships internationally but is currently out of stock again of the tonic. It's not that expensive at £16 for 250ml. It contains 5% glycolic acid for exfoliating the skin and warding off acne. Used once daily, it did help to keep my skin relatively clear, smooth and blemish-free without irritating it, although my pores still needed manual purging from time to time. The only time that it stung slightly was when I applied it after using a Lush fresh mask. I would definitely repurchase this again if it is available.

2. REN Clarifying Toning Lotion also worked well with my skin but is more expensive than Pixi Glow Tonic at £18 for 150ml. Used once daily, I finished this bottle in less than three weeks. The combination of salicilin from willow bark, glycolic acid, lactic acid, citric acid and tartaric acid works to exfoliate, tone and decongest the skin. I did not experience any irritation with this. It does help to keep my skin clear and is more easily available than Pixi Glow Tonic.

3. Astalift Cream did a good job of hydrating my skin but it also made me break out in small blemishes.

4. Astalift Moisture Foam is a pretty standard foaming cleanser that left my skin feeling slightly dry.

5. Astalift Essence Destiny is a light serum that comes with a pipette dispenser. I liked this better than the Astalift Cream as it hydrated my skin without making me breaking out.

6. Astalift Lotion does a good job of refreshing and toning my skin. I still have a full-size bottle of this in my stash.

7. Astalift Complete Make-up Remover Oil did a decent job of removing makeup but didn't feel that special to warrant a full size purchase.

8. Peter Thomas Roth Mega-Rich Body Wash has a lovely citrus scent and cleanses well without drying out my skin.

9. Peter Thomas Roth Mega-Rich Shampoo and Conditioner did not feel as deeply moisturising as Shiseido's Tsubaki range.

10. Lancome Tonique Radiance Clarifying Exfoliating Toner is alcohol-heavy (second on the ingredient list). I accidentally got some in my eye while closing the cap and it stung pretty bad. The Ren Clarifying Lotion and Pixi Glow Tonic are much better alternatives.

11. Helena Rubenstein All Mascaras Complete Eye Makeup Remover proved to be no match for Majolica Majorca's infamous waterproof mascaras. I still don't understand why HR's mascaras top many Japanese beauty magazine polls.

12. Kiehl's Clearly Correcting Dark Spot Solution feels very light on the skin and absorbs well without leaving a film. I didn't notice a significant reduction in the spots on my cheeks though so I probably will not repurchase this.

13. La Mer Moisturising Gel Cream worked surprisingly well with my skin. It helped keep the skin flakes at bay and did not make my skin too oily or cause any blemishes.

14. Lancome Genefique Yeux did a good job of hydrating the eye area without causing any milia. I liked it but probably won't repurchase it as I still have some other eye creams to use up.

15. Sarah Chapman Skinesis Neck and Chest Rejuvenating Complex: This deluxe sample was a gift with purchase. It did a decent job of hydrating but other than that, it was nothing special. I don't really see the point of using a different moisturiser for the neck versus the rest of the body.

16. Clinique 7 Day Scrub Cream is gentle enough to use two to three times a week. I find it to be more effective than Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant. When I use this, I skip the exfoliating lotions so as not to over-exfoliate my skin, which can cause it to get thinner.

17. REN Frankincense Revitalizing Night Cream worked well in hydrating my skin during these dry winter months without making it excessively oily. It does have a distinctive scent but I didn't mind it. The Frankincense range has been revamped and renamed the V-cense range.

18. Vera Wang Satiny Body Lotion was nicely hydrating and did not leave an oily film. The scent is cloyingly sweet though.

19. Rituals Lao Tze Chinese Mint and Yi Yi Ren Cooling Foot Balm did a good job of moisturing my feet and I loved the relaxing scent. The cooling sensation isn't that strong.

20. Bioderma Crealine Solution Micellaire cleanses away makeup pretty effectively except for eye makeup, so I always use a separate eye makeup remover. I also follow up with a facial cleanser to make sure that my skin is thoroughly cleansed.

21. Noble Isle Summer Rising Bath & Shower Gel has a lovely elegant green scent that makes me miss London.

22. L'Occitane Fleurs Merveilleuses Shower Gel has a sweet floral scent that is not too cloying. I liked L'Occitane's shower gels but I only purchase them when they are on sale as they are too pricey at normal retail price.

23. Philosophy Sweet Honey Orange Jam was a delicious orange scent but it does not linger on the skin much.

24. Josie Maran Argan Oil Hair Serum works very well for de-frizzing my hair and I like the scent too. It is pricey but I would repurchase this.

25. Nick Chavez Volumizing Shampoo wasn't particularly volumizing.

26. Percy & Reed Beautifully Bouncy Volumising Conditioner was also not that memorable in terms of the effect it had on my hair.

Ettusais x AMPHI

Ettusais is teaming up with Japanese lingerie brand AMPHI to release this limited edition collection on 6 March in Japan. It includes:

1. Lip Essence a AP (1260yen, 10g)

2. Lip Essence N AP (Stick) (1050yen, 3g)

3. Gel Top Coat N AP (997yen, 9ml)

4. Gel Color Coat PK2 AP (997yen, 9ml)

Thursday 30 January 2014

Lavshuca Spring 2014

For this spring, Lavshuca will be releasing a new BB Lip Essence and Dressy Glow Cheek on 1 February in Japan. The unfragranced BB Lip Essence SPF21 PA+ (630yen, 8g) supposedly has five functions: hydration, sunblock, gloss, color correction and primer. Formulated with hyaluronic acid, jojoba oil, silk and sweet almond oil, it is available in 2 shades, 01 Princess Pink and 02 Queen Red.

The Dressy Glow Cheek (1260yen) is formulated with silk and pearl essence and comes in five shades: PK1 (cute sweet pink), RS1 (elegant feminine rose), RD1 (healthy coral red), RD2 (mature elegant red) and OR1 (fresh orange). The lace imprint and puff look adorable!

Anna Sui March Releases

According to Kyoko Iida, Anna Sui will release the following products on 1 March in Japan:

1. Rose Tissue Box Case (2100yen)

2. Limited Loose Compact Powder SPF18 PA++: In Baby Pink and Apricot Pink (4725yen)

3. Pore Smoothing Primer (2625yen)

See the pics here and here.

Saturday 25 January 2014

Suqqu Spring 2014

Here's the ad visual for the upcoming Suqqu spring collection, due out on 31 January in Japan. The concept behind the collection is to present refined, elegant browns that are easy to use without being boring through the inclusion of accent shades. The shades do not turn ashy when applied. UPDATE: See swatches on Erica's blog and Sherry's Facebook.

The three new Blend Color Eyeshadow quads (7140yen) are permanent. The semi-matte pearl base shade in the lower right corner of each quad is made with a new "moisture wet technology" formula with enhanced moisturising content compared to the previous formula. This enables the shade to be used as a base shade that conceals imperfections and skin unevenness or on top of the other shades for a natural pearly glow. The top left shade is a Light Color (Pearly) for brightening; top right shade is an Arrange Color (Pearly) for adding depth; and bottom left is a Deep Color (Pearly) for a fresh, playful accent.

Blend Color Eyeshadow #15 蜜茶 Mitsucha

#16 花菖蒲 Hanashoubu (used on the model)

#17 蓬色 Yomogiiro

Balancing Cheeks N (6825yen): The left shade is a Nuance Highlight color with red and gold pearl, with a dry formula that helps the Cheek Color (right) meld into the skin. The Cheek Color is made with the wet technology formula for a translucent, glow-from-within finish.

01 桃朱色 Momoshuiro

02 淡桜 Usuzakura (used on the model)

Smoothing Face Color (7350yen, LE): Comprises a matte pink powder for correcting and brightening, a matte beige powder for a poreless finish and a pearly white powder for enhanced translucency.

Maquillage Essence Glamorous Rouge Neo CM and Majolica Majorca Eye Hunter

Here's the new ad for Maquillage Essence Glamorous Rouge Neo (2415yen) featuring Mizuhara Kiko. The Neo version of this bestselling liquid lipstick has 120% more moisturising content than the original version for a lip mask effect, thanks to ingredients such as soluble collagen, hyaluronic acid saxifraga stolonifera extract and glycerin. Available in 4 permanent shades and 2 limited edition shades (see the range here).

Another clip for the Majolica Majorca Eye Hunter collection for spring.

Wednesday 22 January 2014

Ettusais February Releases

Ettusais is slated to release the following new products on 13 February in Japan.

1. Quick Fit Powder (Rose): Fragrance-free face powder that brightens up the complexion and conceals skin imperfections. (1575yen, 5.3g, limited edition)

2. BB Mineral Gel SPF25 PA+++: New lightweight gel formula that applies with friction on skin. Available in 2 shades (Light Beige & Natural Beige) and free of mineral oil, fragrance, parabens and UV absorbers. (1890yen, 40g)

3. Peeling Milk N: Alcohol-free peeling milk with lemon extract and glycerin. (1365yen, 125ml)

Friday 17 January 2014

Chanel Le Blanc

Here are more pics of the Chanel Le Blanc makeup collection from Eclat.

Thursday 16 January 2014

Chanel Le Blanc Collection 2014

Pics of the Chanel Le Blanc collection tweeted by Abe Sawako. Release date for Japan is 14 March.

Dior My Lady Blush

Dior's Triannon collection for spring doesn't appeal to me much but this pair of My Lady Blush 002 and 003 (7350yen each), released exclusively at Isetan in Japan on 8 January do look awfully pretty. They are embossed with Dior's iconic Cannage design motif, similar to the Harrods-exclusive My Lady Healthy Glow Complexion Enhancing Palette from last March. I haven't seen these being released elsewhere though.

Wednesday 15 January 2014

Mika Ninagawa for Shu Uemura

Shu Uemura teams up with renowned Japanese photographer and film maker Mika Ninagawa for the third time this spring. Ninagawa had previously created collections for Shu Uemura in Holiday 2008 and Spring 2011. The collection features four madly colorful and whimsical prints created by Ninagawa - Curiosity, Forbidden Fruits, Singing Forest, & Melting Sweet Dream.

UV Under Base Mousse: POREraser (pink) POREraser (beige), BB mousse (BB beige), and Brightening

Cleansing Oils: POREfinist anti-shine fresh cleansing oil, Ultime8 Sublime beauty cleansing oil, Anti/Oxi skin refining cleansing oil and Whitefficient clear brightening gentle cleansing oil

Dual Fit Pressed Powder Compact

Eye Shadow Spiral Duo 01 and 02

Nail stickers 01 Singing Forest and 02 Melting Sweet Dream

Natural False Lashes

Tint in Gelato lip & cheek stain: 12 shades

All products are limited edition except for the Tint in Gelato. Press images from Beautezine and The Office Chic.

Tuesday 14 January 2014

RMK Special Base Make Kit 2014

RMK will release this limited edition Special Base Make Kit 2014 (9030yen) on 1 February in Japan. It includes:

1. Makeup Base (regular size in a LE design)

2. Liquid Foundation (regular size in a LE design)

3. Skintuner Smoother Moist 30ml

4. Firming Essence 8ml

5. UV Face Protector 50 SPF50 PA++++ 8g

6. Pouch

The RMK website has been updated with the Play on Pink collection.

Chanel Le Blanc Collection 2014

Here are pics of the Chanel Le Blanc collection to be released in Asian countries this spring.

Powder Foundation SPF25 PA+++ in 6 shades

Jardin de Camelias Illumination Powder

Ombres Tracées Quadra Eyeshadow Jardin Zen

Joues Contraste #87 Sakura

Illusion D'Ombre #94 Rose des Vents

Ligne Graphique #14 Noir 14 Scintillant

Rouge Allure #139 Fleurie and 142 Charmeuse

Aqualumiere Gloss #86 Eau de Rose (LE), #87 Rosace, #88 Pink Pivoine and #89 Baie Rose (LE)