Sephora Stocks Tom Ford + 15% Off Promotion

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Ok sorry, now everything’s sold out!!! I was super psyched when I found out per chance when browsing though Sephora online that they now stock Tom Ford cosmetics and perfume. The debut was April 1 online, and coming soon April 15 in stores. However, I was still not totally sold on Tom Ford’s cosmetics since I tend to be pretty loyal to Chanel and Guerlain. I’m also kind of a purist because I don’t really believe that a fashion brand should diverge into the realm of cosmetics… In addition, I already have so much stuff that I really don’t need more makeup!

Then Sephora just so happened to send out to VIB Rouge members a 15% discount affective last evening which completely threw me over because high end cosmetics rarely go on “sale.” I knew Tom Ford would be a fast seller but didn’t imagine that things would completely sell out in like 12 hours. The promotion code, ROUGENOTE, was supposed to be valid starting 12AM Pacific time, but I think it began 2 hours earlier when I checked to see if the code would work and it did! I knew what I wanted and checked out fast, besides the selection is small with only the Soleil 2016 collection available and nothing from the permanent collection. For the first time, I was also really impressed with how fast Sephora had shipped these out and my package arrived the next day!

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What did I purchase?
3 X Tom Ford Ultra-Rich Lip Color lipsticks
1 X Tom Ford Skin Illuminator in Fire Lust
1 X Alterna Caviar Replenishing Moisture Shampoo
1 X Alterna Caviar Replenishing Moisture Conditioner

I’ve heard of how bold and saturated Tom Ford’s lipsticks are in the permanent collection, so I really wanted to try the Ultra-Rich lipsticks. I was really not interested in the Moisturecore and Sheer ones, because I already have many other less pigmented lip colours. However once I tried them on, they really did not live up to my expectations… More recently I’ve discovered Louboutin‘s lipsticks which are phenomenal in pigmentation compared to these ones. Even relative to my Chanel and Guerlain products, they were all kinda sheer. So the title “Ultra-Rich” is not the most accurate in my opinion, but what I do appreciate is that there is NO SHIMMER/GLITTER! These days, I just want a pure colour, no fancy light reflecting stuff unless it’s very refined…

Ultra-Rich Lip Color in the following 3 shades:
Le mépris – bold pink with blue undertones which is probably my favourite out of the entire collection and I think most others would agree because it was the first to sell out.
Solar affair – nice coral pink, it’s pretty but my 3rd choice out of the three here.
Aphrodite – light fuchsia with blue undertones that’s more wearable for everyday.

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I was also eyeing the Skin Illuminator in Fire Lust which I believe is a re-promote from 2013? I used to have very oily skin in my teens, then my skin changed to combo with age which allows me to discover various highlighters these days because in the past I steered far away from anything shiny. Especially in the winter when my skin is parched dry and pale, I like to give it a radiant glow to remind me of the summer days. I heard rave reviews of this Skin Illuminator which is why I purchased two of them! I haven’t tried them on my face yet, but on application to the back of my hand, it’s a sheer wash of coral shimmer. I’ve made a comparison swatch relative to similar products from Guerlain, Giorgio Armani, and Laura Mercier. My ratings on various parameters are as below:

Colour pigments:
Tom Ford >> Laura MercierGiorgio ArmaniGuerlain
Tom Ford definitely has a lot more pink pigments and Giorgio Armani has a white sheen.

Shimmer:
Giorgio Armani >> Tom Ford > Laura Mercier > Guerlain
Giorgio Armani has bigger particles that are more shiny and reflective. It’s not glitter but a little too prom-like for me and makes me a bit white-washed in shade 2. Laura Mercier technically does not have any shimmer, but it has a very “radiant” glow which is really beautiful. Guerlain has the tiniest pearly shimmer ever and is definitely the most natural.

Texture:
Tom Ford > Laura Mercier > Giorgio Armani > Guerlain
Guerlain is definitely the most sheer and has a bit of a watery jelly texture.

Moisturizing:
Guerlain is the most moisturizing with its hydrogel feel than any of the others which are all satiny when dry. Guerlain also has a bit of a dewy feel, which I love.

Final verdict?
Guerlain wins hands down for everyday wear year round! The collection has been around since 1987, and when a product has stuck around with all the advances in beauty these days, you know it’s been tried, tested, and true to performance. I absolutely love this stuff and who can say no to those beautiful pearl beads that magically dissolve with each pump? Yes it’s an old technology, but still gets me feeling giddy like a girl.

However if you have a special event in the summer and want a bit more “glow,” I would recommend Laura Mercier for the daytime; and either Tom Ford or Giorgio Armani for the night. Depending on how your skin tone is, I can imagine that Tom Ford’s illuminator will look great on very fair skin that needs a pinch more of a rosy colour whereas if your cheeks are already pretty pigmented or you wish to apply the product all over like the bridge of your nose, eyebrow, or forehead I would recommend Giorgio Armani’s because it’s more of a highlighter that can be applied more liberally than just the cheeks.

Tip: Again be careful with too generous application of Tom Ford’s product because of the pink colour you don’t want to look like you have a “radiating rosacea” face – Yes I do have rosacea which is why I’m a bit weary!

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Lastly, I got a bunch of deluxe samples again with my reward points. Sometimes I get more excited with the samples than the products themselves. I was looking forward to try Josie Maran’s Argan Oil foundation which sounds pretty interesting, but I was not impressed despite all the good reviews. My hands are very dry and you can see the emphasis on fine lines all over my middle finger which is actually worse in real life than what this picture shows. The application was poor and overall extremely drying and blotchy in appearance.

I also bought 2 large bottles of Alterna Caviar Replenishing Moisture shampoo and conditioner. No pictures but this is my favourite hair brand for the past year. I absolutely swear by this brand and their products make my hair silky soft without stripping the moisture or colour. So with 15% off, I had to get the large value size to last for the next year! I’m also really excited to try the deluxe Alterna Caviar CC Cream for Hair 10-in-1 Complete Correction which I’ve heard amazing transformations of hair and styling.

Thank you for letting me share again! And remember that the promo runs until April 13, so be sure to check online for any other new or restocked items. Have a great weekend 😀

Who Killed Detective CC?!?!

Christian Louboutin SS16 Baila Spike 100 in Patent Black/Leopard

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When Christian Louboutin featured the “Who Killed Amazoula?” video clip on their website, I was immediately drawn to the red straps on a pair of spikey leopard heels worn by Detective Baila. I loved the whimsical storyline where Detective Baila was called upon to investigate the death of a rich socialite, wearing a pair of knee high leopard Amazoula heels, while it seemed like she had just applied her lipstick and was in the midst of getting ready to go out.unspecified

Detective Baila then interviewed the maid who was wearing the Wawy Dolly 120 heels in Shocking Pink. With the help of the guard, in a pair of dashing Laperouse dress shoes, he showed the detective around the home placing cards of suspicious items for further investigation.unspecified-3image-3

However, upon notification that Detective Baila went missing for a month, her colleague Detective CC was named the new chief investigator. As Detective CC entered the room, clad in a Burberry trench (yes both detectives have similar tastes in fashion and shoes lol), she noticed that the scene was somewhat different than what Detective Baila had described. The maid was not to be found, and the guard was gone as well! She quickly jotted down some notes in her Lanvin notebook of the Ron Ron heels in the original Shocking Pink from 2009 and Intern Spike Flats bearing the CL crest since 2012.IMG_5094 IMG_5049

Detective CC carefully analyzed all items that could be gathered as evidence. There were multiple CL lipsticks scattered all over the room, but only one in Sheer Voile with an interesting pearl chain… Was this Rouge only for a pretty face or the first trace to the case?IMG_5098

Detective CC decided to gather all pieces of evidence to bring back to her friend in forensics medicine as there could be DNA found in the Rouge lipstick and nail polish. The glass bottle of the nail polish showcased the most dramatic 8 inch heel ever created by CL which is not only a true “objet d’art” but potentially the object of choice as weapon…IMG_5135

However just as Detective CC was about finish collecting all the evidence and call it a day… The unthinkable happened – Detective CC was brought down!!! She clutched onto the pieces of evidence as she called out for help!!!IMG_5146

In the end, a piece of evidence was stolen!!!IMG_5147

Who was the killer? Who killed Amazoula? Where is Detective Baila? Save Detective CC!!!FullSizeRender

This story is inspired by Christian Louboutin’s Spring Summer 2016 collection’s campaign video which can be found on the official website or via Youtube:

Details:

The shoes are amazing with the mini spikes, and I’m just head over heels in love with them! I’ve seen a few versions of this style with the lower 85mm heels and flats, as well as in all white and black, but the 100mm black/red/leopard is what I really wanted. So I went searching for them all over and called every boutique that carries CL in my country. Unfortunately this was not available, and I had to order them from the States again. The extra customs and duties were all worth it because I love the them so much and they’re surprisingly very comfortable. My usual size was actually sold out and I was afraid that the smaller size that I ordered would not have fit, but I took a chance because the open back sandals are usually more forgiving in terms of fit. It turned out perfect in size and the straps too are perfect in fit.

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More pictures:

As seen on Britney Spears recently posing for V Magazine (black version with silver spikes)Britney-Spears-V-Magazine-2016-Cover-Photoshoot05

Carey Mulligan on the red carpet in the same black version:Carey-Mulligan

Jennifer Lawrence also in the black version:632e1866ba4a744b00f759eb1104e9ff

At Cushnie et Ochs’ FW15 backstage runway in the similar “Rivierina” heels:Christian_LouboutinNYFW_15_Cushnie_et_Ochs_1

Others:8-_n3a7651_new12728540_975220029223808_878257497_n

Happy Easter!

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Hope everyone had a great Easter weekend! I remember as a kid, I loved making Easter eggs. I’ve tried all sorts of ways of creating them, but the best method to keep the eggs for the long term is to actually blow out the contents from the inside! You will need eggs, a pin needle, and a bowl. The colour of the egg shouldn’t matter, but if you plan on painting the egg in light colours, it’s best to use white egg shells. Here’s my way:

  1. Take a small pin needle and gently make a hole at the top and bottom of the egg.
  2. Shake the egg with your fingers closing the holes. The shaking will loosen the yolk.
  3. Blow on the top part of the egg letting the contents come out from the bottom hole.
  4. Use a bowl to catch the egg yolk and white so that you can use it for cooking later.
  5. Run water inside the holes and shake the egg to clean the inside.
  6. Allow to dry for several hours (24 hours would be best).
  7. Ready for crafting!

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Yes, I actually like shot glasses for this project because it helps to stand the egg perfectly. You can use all sorts of colours materials, from natural dyes, watercolour, to acrylic paint. I prefer the latter as it has a more even distribution and the colour is more saturated, whereas watercolour (e.g. the red egg below) can appear blotchy and doesn’t dry as fast in my opinion. Also with watercolour, when I do the final “sealing” coat, it tends to make the colour run since the sealant that I use is also water based.

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Lastly, we also had some of these chocolate pretzel “nests” with jelly beans. Super cute and easy to make but a bit messy…

Anyhow, hope everyone had a great long weekend 😀

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Take Me Higher in Butterfly Chiara Heels!

Sophia Webster FW15 Chiara Heels in Fuschia Hologram, Patent Neon Orange, Iridescent Gold, and Black Suede

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Sophia Webster first caught my eye a little more than a year ago when she created the “Evangeline” heels which have a pair of angel’s wings. Then the Chiara heels with butterfly wings came out and made my heart flutter in joy. Nonetheless, I was not sold on the price tag of this contemporary brand. For the same amount, I could buy a nice pair of high end designer heels that are made in Europe, rather than a developing country. So I waited for the sale to happen because I also had a DIY project in mind…

Here’s my reveal but keep on reading for my special project!

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The shoes are super cute, especially the heart on the outsole. I love the colour pattern with the hot pink holographic wings, bright orange divisions, and golden edges. I’m not too keen on the black toe band and would’ve preferred a PVC or nude strap so that the wings really are the focus of the shoes. Overall, I don’t regret purchasing them. However, I’m not sure if I would purchase more from this brand. The quality is obviously not what I’m used to from premier designers, but it’s not horrible. The leather is a bit stiff and the edges are kinda scratchy. It’s these details that I feel like are lacking and could really help to polish the brand more. The fit is true to size in my opinion and pretty comfortable when I was walking around in my home. I’m still very excited for the weather to get better and take them out for a fly!

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Outfit reference:
Equipment silk blouse
BCBG mini-skirt

Inspired DIY Project*
Many years ago, I was very good at arts and crafts. I haven’t touched them in a decade, but got inspired when I saw Sophia Webster’s Glitter Evangeline heels. I preferred Chiara’s vibrant pattern with the hologram, but cannot live without glitter. So I thought why not get crafty and make it a glitter project myself?! Sure enough, I went out to buy all my supplies. Although I purchased the heels a while ago, I did not have time to sit down for this project until a week ago, which was why I’ve delayed my reveal until I had the final masterpiece done!sophia-webster-light-pink-evangeline-glitter-angel-wing-sandals-pink-product-4-102979236-normal

What you will need:
1. Glue – Any kind of white glue, Allen’s art glue, Viva’s Glass Effect Gel, Mod Podge, Glossy Accents, Multi-Medium Matte Glue…etc. I probably would not use E6000 or hot glue… I’m also not a fan of glitter glue because I find the glitter is not as dense but these were only from the dollar store that I played with as a child. There could be better quality ones out there now.
2. Glitter – Choose any kind to your liking. I prefer the ones with very fine glitter because the chunky ones are hard to spread, but again this is only from my experience decades ago. Not sure how advanced technology has made glitter these days, but choose with caution.
3. Sealant – Use any kind of varnish or even hairspray can do the trick!
4. Various small hard tipped brushes to work in small areas.

Everything is pretty self-explanatory. I applied glitter all over the orange divisions on the wings as shown below. It took about 3-4 coats to get the glitter effect that I wanted. Each coat took approximately 2 hours to apply, and I gave 5-6 hours to dry in between each coat. Then I applied 2 coats of sealant on top. Total amount of time = 1 full weekend and it was totally worth it! I was delighted with the final result as you can see in the pictures below.

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I was so ecstatic that I even made my first video! Thank you all for letting me share my new pretty shoes and first DIY project 😀

Other pictures of the infamous Chiara heels:chiara-swaw15103-2.62thumb.php

Campaign from Sophia Webster’s FW15 collection:
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June-2015-Homepage

Neiman Marcus advertisement:NMX2QRM_ez

Other colour patterns:

Rossi Diaz flew to the MTV VMAs last year in these Mint Green heels:2015+MTV+Video+Music+Awards+Arrivals+J6_MQrojiwMxCO5VFaBWEAAPUJASophiawebster_featureimage_360nobs-640x431

As seen on Anna Dello Russo and Kaley Cuoco in Iridescent Neon:Anna-Dello-Russo-Sophia-Webster-Chiara-Butterfly-Sandals-3kaley-cuoco-and-sophia-webster-chiara-sandals-gallery

Mini Chiara baby shoes and grown up heels in Spearmint:Sophia_Webster-63-11

Sophia Webster in collaboration with Barbie:140

Lastly, the bridal version for something Blue:SOPHIA_3

*Disclaimer: The DIY project is only for my personal entertainment. It is not intended for resale as all shoes are for my own use. It is not to promote counterfeit designer goods. Credit is given to the creator herself, Sophia Webster, for her original design of the Evangeline Glitter heels which have inspired me. I am not responsible for other people’s actions should my DIY project inspire others to create similar products. 

My First Pair of Stuart Weitzman’s Shoes

Stuart Weitzman Highland 85 in Black Suede Leather

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I finally got my SW over the knee boots!!! I’ve been yearning for these boots for months since I saw them on many Instagrammers last fall. They’re not terribly expensive in comparison to some of my other shoes, but it’s just mentally hard for me to justify spending full price on a pair of non-Louboutins! I was initially waiting for them to go on sale during the Winter, but I was told by the sales people at SW’s official boutiques that they never reduce the prices for these classics. I was disappointed but determined to purchase a pair on sale. So I roamed the internet, called all these boutiques around the world, and in the end I gave up. They were indeed full price everywhere, except for some odd coloured ones, like red, blue, beige…etc.

Then I thought about purchasing alternatives that are more affordable. I found these Karen Millen OTK boots that are very feminine and cute. However, they only had the 110mm heels, whereas I preferred the lower 85 heel which was not available in my size. Although they were very good quality, $650 was still very expensive. I was hoping they’d go on sale too, but I guess last sales season really was not meant for me.

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In the end, I went back to Holt Renfrew and made an order for the original SW boots that I had in mind. The selection is very good: available in a variety of colours, suede or smooth leather. All the different versions of OTK boots made by SW can be confusing. After analyzing all of them, the three most sought after boots are:
– Highland: Average shaft length 24 inches, round toe
– Hightstreet: Average shaft length 24 inches, almond toe
– All Legs: Tall shaft length 27 inches, almond toe (great for those who are tall!)

I was pretty sure I wanted Highlands in black suede, but almost got swayed by these taupe “Praline” boots… I kinda like them, but I don’t have a lot of grey, beige, brown, or tan colours in my wardrobe which I think would suit this colour best. Here I tried them on in a changing closet. I dunno, my pale skin looks even more washed out and I kinda felt like having elephant legs!

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So why are they so popular? I think these OTK boots are perfect because they don’t scream “OTK stripper boots” at all, they’re demure, practical, and casually chic for everyday wear. You can dress them up with a midi skirt, mini skirt, or tuck a pair of jeggings inside to keep you extra warm during the cooler seasons. Not only so, they’re very comfortable at 85mm that you gain some height without compromising practicality. I love all the suede colours, but not the smooth kid leather version… I know it’s easier to maintain, but the smooth leather is very shiny and can be more difficult to wear in my opinion. Anyhow, without further ado, my reveal!

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^Details of the boots: Leather back tie to help prevent the boots from slipping when worn with bare legs, because the inside is lined in slippery satin.
Tip: When putting on OTK boots, it’s much easier to fold the boots mid-way first, especially if you plan on wearing jeggings. Then step into the footbed, and pull them up all the way!

Outfit reference:
Louis Vuitton Monogram shawl
Guess black top
BCBG mini skirt

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Other than the official SW boutiques, these boots are available through a variety of retailers: NM, BG, Saks, Nordies, Bloomies, Browns, Holt Renfrew, David’s, The September, Lane Crawford, Luisa Via Roma…etc. However, the fact that I was able to redeem some points for HR’s gift card helped to dampen my shopping damage! In addition, another justification was that I was driving back home with a storm soon to come the next day. Obviously, I would need some new designer boots to conquer through the snow! Alright, I’m joking – I would never wear suede out in any wet weather condition! This was a great advice given to me by my dear cobbler many years ago. It’s impossible to revive the fluffiness of suede once it gets wet. It can also alter the shape and lining of the leather during the drying process. However, my S6 with all its quattro beastliness would gladly run through any storm!

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Here are a few other goodies that I picked up. Since I’m on the road often, I like to pack just my essentials for skincare and makeup, which means that I often leave out my nice masks and other face creams. So my skin becomes dry easily in the Winter. I bought this value pack from Sephora to quench my skin’s thirst and another Guerlain eyeshadow palette.

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^Group pic with my recent duty free purchases.

Thanks for letting me share another great shopping day and it’s so nice to come home to find a box of chocolates waiting for me to devour! 🙂

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