Thoughts of the week – 20/4

clouds

1. I am working every public holiday this Easter plus ANZAC Day. Whenever I speak to someone on the phone they always express sympathy that I’m working on a public holiday, to which I reply “just watching the money roll in bitches.” Perfect timing for Hawaii.

2. Princess Kate had a blue snakeskin Oroton clutch in Queensland today and I’m kicking myself now that I didn’t buy it because I picked it up several times in-store – it was lovely. And now sold old.

3. Baby George is just the cutest. those cheeks!

4. I’m not especially religious but I don’t eat meat on Good Friday. I friend and I went for a post work Maccas session yesterday and after smashing a large Filet O Fish meal and a caramel sundae, I had stomach cramps for over six hours afterwards. Caveat emptor.

5. I had to buy my own Easter egg this year which I suppose is a bit sad. I got a Darrell Lea liquorice one and it’s been sitting at the end of my bed. It’s killing me.

6. I found three of the mythical 4711 Acqua Colonia fragrances at the DFO for $5 each and bought two – Lemon & Ginger and Melissa & Verbena. They’re lovely and refreshing, plus it was such a bargain.

7. I love these aerial photographs.

8. I watched the first season of Community and quite enjoyed it. It’s a great ensemble and they build the inside jokes really well. Still deciding if I’ll sign up for season two though.

9. Jess talked about her obsession with Belvita breakfast biscuits and I was so relieved to know I’m not the only one. I absolutely adore them.

10. THIS. Every. Single. Time.

Happy Easter

eggs

This has been a busy week, work-wise, and I’ll be working my way right through Easter (and hoping for a bit of calm). I’m rapt to have scored all the public holidays so my bank account should be looking healthier as I get ready to go to Hawaii. I’m already spending it in my head.

For those who get time off, enjoy it. For those who will be at work like me, I hope you get an easy run. And for everyone, I wish you plenty of chocolate. While I’m a bit old to be believing in the Easter Bunny, I have to admit that I did buy myself a Darrell Lea liquorice-filled Easter egg and will be putting it at the end of my bed on Saturday night for Sunday morning. Of course that’s if I don’t eat it all first!

Have a wonderful Easter.

March empties

A lot of empties this month – I’m trying to sort through my overwhelming cache of things and get rid of products I don’t use, like or have gone bad.

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Final Net hair spray – I don’t mind a quick dash of hairspray after I’ve done my hair and this did a decent job. Plus the smell took me back to my dance concert days.

Fabulosity EDP – This was a blind buy that didn’t work on me. I expected it to be more fruity/vanilla but it’s floral so I’m taking it to work to use as the communal perfume.

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Pacifica Sandalwood Body Butter – This is only half empty but I just can’t take the smell any more. I love sandalwood but this isn’t really that sandalwoody and the cream isn’t good enough to overcome the smell problem.

Korres Coconut Milk Shower Gel – The Korres shower gels are my favourite formulation and this was another good one, though not their best. It was more a milky, nutty scent than full on coconut.

Hamilton Urederm Cream – Love this, automatic re-purchase.

Kmart Sugar Mint Body Scrub – This was $3 so I thought I’d give it a shot. In short, it’s TERRIBLE. There’s no scrubby bits really and it can’t even be used as a shower gel because it doesn’t lather. Chucking it.

Thierry Mugler Angel hand cream – Used this as a body lotion and it was great, left just the right amount of what’s a very strong scent.

Shiseido Honey Cake soap – This was a Japan purchase I’d been hoarding and apparently it’s a bit of a cult product there. it doesn’t smell like honey and is more like ordinary old Pears soap so I wouldn’t bother hunting it down again. Nice but not special.

EOS cucumber hand cream – I don’t like hand cream but bought this in the US because I loved the smell and the packaging. Sadly it’s gone off so I’m chucking it.

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Biore Pore Cleansing Strips – Automatic re-purchase

Swisspers Cucumber Facial Wipes – Bought these for travel because my half-litre of Shu Uemura cleansing oil doesn’t travel well. They were nice and did a decent job.

Neutrogena Deep Clean Radiance Boosting Mulberry Foam Cleanser – I love a good foam pump cleanser and really enjoyed this. It did a great job of cleaning my face without stripping it and has the most amazing fruity scent.

Yes to Blueberries Age Refresh Intensive Skin Repair Serum – This was an old sale purchase that has gone bad so I’m chucking it.

Derma Q10 + Retinol Skin Repair Serum – This is a really cheap supermarket line and I think the serum was about $5. It didn’t do much for my face so I used it on my décolletage and it was fine.

Lancôme Advanced Genefique Serum – I liked this more than I expected and would consider a full size purchase. it made my skin feel lovely.

The Body Shop Vitamin C Skin Boost – This is a serumy type product that has the texture of a silicone primer, so I used it as such. It was nice and light and made make up slip on easily. However it has a glass bottle and a pump pack that gave up with about a fifth of the product still in there. it was impossible to scrape out too, which is pretty frustrating.

L’Oreal Revitalift Laser x 3 day cream – This is a sample and I also finished a full size jar (which was in a plastic Sephora tub after I took the heavy glass original packaging overseas). I really liked it but probably not enough to immediately re-purchase.

Ren Evercalm Gentle Cleansing Milk sample – This was OK but cleansing milks aren’t usually strong enough for my skin.

Olay Regenerist Regenerating Serum – This was OK, nothing special. I wouldn’t re-purchase.

Philosophy Miracle Worker Eye Serum – This sample came in an Adore kit and I didn’t mind it. Usually I’m not big on eye cream but this was lovely to use.

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Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation – I love this but I have issues with it. The shimmer is too much on my skin and it makes me look oily only hours later. I’ve been through over half of the bottle but I have better products waiting in the wings so I’m getting rid of it.

Revlon Photoready Airbrush Mousse Makeup – God knows what I was doing when I bought this as it’s about three shades too dark for my skin. I’m going to give it to a friend.

Max Factor Whipped Crème foundation – This was a sample from a UK magazine and I’m devastated because you can’t buy the product here. It has a beautiful matte finish.

Maybelline Cosmic Edge Bronze Shimmer Powder – This stuff is at least 15 years old. It is very very dark and very very shimmery, though with an incredibly light hand it works well. However it’s loose and grotty and old so I’m chucking it.

Revlon Beyond Natural Cream to Power Eye Shadow Quad in Buff – These aren’t great. They’re creamy but they never really set and soon migrate into your crease. Chucking.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Lip Gloss in Passionfruit Shimmer – This came free with a magazine and it’s OK but I don’t love it and have 100 similar shades. Passing on to a friend.

Cover Girl Flamed Out Shadow Pencil in Ashen Glow - This wasn’t as good as the other pencil I bought (Caramel Flame) and it’s a harder texture with glitter. Giving it to a friend as I don’t love it.

Rimmel Kate Moss Matte Lipstick in 103 – This matte pink has a great formula but the colour is a touch too pale for me so I’m giving it to a friend.

Essence Twilight Breaking Dawn Lip Gloss in Renesme Red – God knows what I was thinking. This is glitter city so I’m giving it away.

Cover Girl WetSlicks Fruit Spritzers Lip Gloss in Papaya Splash – This is nice but pretty much sheer and I have a million of those. Giving to a friend.

Essence 50s Girls Lipstick in Back to the 50s - This is a nice straight red with a creamy finish but I have enough reds already. Giving away.

Bloom Eyeshadow in Olive – I have a L’Oreal Infaillible that’s a dupe for this colour but the product is better, so I’m handing this one off.

Things I bought #17.

409 JCrew

I obsessed over this J.Crew jacket. It was highlighted in one of their emails but every time I looked online my size was sold out. Such was my love for the so-named Surf Varsity Jacket, that I was actually happy to pay full J.Crew inflated for Australians price. If it came in, I was going to grab it.

Finally it did and for $175 it was mine. It fulfils my love of neoprene and this version is done in a soft and comfortable cotton. I love how neutral the black and grey is, meaning I’ll be able to wear it with a lot of other colours and things. I also appreciate that the sportswear style very much ticks a box for this season while remaining timeless – I’m sure I’ll still be able to wear the style five years from now.

I’ve worn it a few times so far casually with jeans but am planning to wear it to work to put a twist on some structured dresses. I think a bright lip in orange, pink or red will also tie in nicely with it too.

The Surf Varsity Jacket is still available online and it’s gone down to $166 at the moment so if you like it, move quickly.

Thoughts of the week – 13/4

dita

1. Last night I went to a retirement function for a bloke in our organisation who has been there for 44 years. He’s had an amazing career and I was absolutely touched to be one of the people he thanked in his speech.

2. I had another two inches cut off my hair on Tuesday and I’m undecided. It’s VERY short now and a lot more angular – when I straighten it it’s fantastic but then 10 minutes later when it’s started to curl up everywhere I’m not such a fan.

3. I went and saw The Lego Movie and loved it but beware, if you see it you will get the song Everything Is Awesome stuck in your head for days on end.

4. Bare Minerals Round the Clock eyeliner is the bomb except it’s near impossible to get off. It’s creamy and applies so well and doesn’t budge all night. then it takes me three cleansers to get it off.

5. I’m up to episode 10 of season two of The Mindy Project and it just gets funnier and funnier. Morgan and Peter texting Cliff from Mindy’s phone had me crying with laughter ; )

6. I really want this Michael Kors pouch to take to Hawaii but I could do without the pre holiday purchasing. Also maybe I’ll be able to get it there.

7. Speaking of Hawaii, only three weeks to go and I’m starting to get super excited.

8. I wish it would hurry up and be cold here. I’ve got a lot of winter coats and scarves I’d like to wear.

9. Late Night with Jimmy Fallon is now being shown on ABC2 and it’s pretty much the only thing I’ll turn my TV on for.

10. Has anyone tried Zoe Foster’s new skincare line, Go-To? I’m interested to hear if you have.

GPO/H&M

H&M

When I first visited H&M, in London seven years ago, I was in awe. So much great stuff and so cheap. A lot of the pieces I binge bought on that trip have held up well too, such as organic cotton tees that were perfectly soft and sheer, a chambray tunic dress I wore to lounge in Hyde Park the day after terrible food poisoning, and a navy and white striped top that was a staple in my wardrobe until I finally bid it adieu last year given it was ready to fall apart. I loved H&M so much I actually had dreams about shopping there again.

Through every overseas trip thereafter it became a constant – LA, New York, Tokyo, Bangkok, Rome, Venice, London, Edinburgh. Always hunting for the red neon signs. A visit to H&M was something special and precious, like searching out an Aladdin’s cave of cut-price treasures.

The Melbourne opening kind of snuck up on me and then all of a sudden you couldn’t turn your head in the CBD without copping an eyeful of a Miranda Kerr poster. Sitting at work last Saturday a few colleagues and I contemplated a visit for the store opening until we were told that around 1000 people were there. Shahs of Sunset and Fashion Police it is then. Apparently the store stayed open until midnight just to meet demand.

On Monday I found myself with four hours to kill in the city between finishing work and having dinner with a friend. I wandered up Elizabeth Street and through the Bourke Street mall until it became inevitable – was I going to line up at H&M? I reckon there were about 300 people in line so I decided to stand in it for 15 minutes, see how quickly it moved and if I wasn’t happy then I’d nick off to Melbourne Central. I got inside in 30 minutes, so not too bad.

H&M is housed inside the Melbourne GPO building which corners Elizabeth and Bourke Streets. It’s a grand old piece of architecture that used to be home to an array of (expensive) Australian designers. The location is incredible though for the most part inside it looks like any other H&M anywhere else in the world, white walls and modern fixtures. It wasn’t too jam packed inside either and though there were a lot of customers, I wasn’t elbowing people out of the road every three seconds.

There was a lot of stock and plenty that I remembered from my time in Europe five months ago, though to be fair that fits given the reverse in seasons. I’ve been trying to hold back as my Hawaii trip looms so I didn’t go nuts and only bought a single dress. It was actually on the first rack as I walked in – digital print, knee-length with a broad ruffle across the neckline. I’m planning on wearing it to a function on Friday night and also taking it to wear out in Waikiki next month. For $29.95 it was an absolute steal.

Overall I thought it was a decent shopping experience. The prices seem reasonably comparable and not too inflated, and there’s a good amount and choice of stock. If you don’t like crowds then I definitely don’t think there’s any rush to get in there now and check it out so wait a few weeks. No urgency. I’m definitely interested to see how the store develops here over time and how they deal with the pattern of our seasons. And I’ll always enjoy hunting it down overseas, that’s not gonna change.

H&M dress

 

Things I love #10.

urederm

I like to live my life in a fragranced bubble. Never mind I own nearly 70 perfumes, I want everything I use to smell good. Body lotions, shower gels, candles, you name it. And yet my favourite body moisturiser of all time has absolutely no smell, which says a lot about how much I love the product to overlook that.

A couple of winters ago I struggled with dry, itchy legs and nothing would fix it. I tried every kind of body oil and cream but I couldn’t get anything to work. I saw the tubes of Hamilton Urederm in Chemist Warehouse for around $6 each and thought I’d give it a shot. Even with the weird name that makes it sound like wee. Best decision ever.

Urederm is a really rich cream that sinks in straight away and for the most part, doesn’t feel like it’s leaving a film on your skin. It’s also easy to rub in and doesn’t move around in white circles for ages while to frantically try to get it to absorb. It fixed my dry legs in about two nights and it’s amazing stuff. I like to use it now anywhere I find I’m getting a bit dry and because it’s so cheap, I have no guilt about going through tubes of it.

Now, do you think I could convince them to make a vanilla or coconut scented version?