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April’s Glambox

April 22, 2014

So I’m finally back from China. I went on school trip to Beijing and Shanghai for 10 days and I’m kind of happy to be back. Don’t get me wrong, it was a lovely trip and I had the time of my life. But I realised that heart belonged in Dubai.

All the traveling and preparing for this trip barely left for me time to try out new products. I received the April Glambox right before traveling. And boy was I excited to see what was inside! Unfortunately, I prefer trying out products at home rather than abroad as the weather and the environment are different. So here are my first impressions of this month’s box:

Since summer arrived in Dubai (yes, already), the Silk Hydration sunscreen lotion by Hawaiian Tropical was included. It smells aboslutely lovely. It’s designed to protect (SPF 50) and hydrate as well. 

Two Caudalie products were included. This brand landed in Dubai recently and I still didn’t have the chance to get my hands on their products until now. The first product is the Vinoperfect Perfecting Day Fluid. It’s basically a perfecting, correcting and moisturizing fluid that creates a radiant complexion instantly. The second Caudalie products is their Hand & Nail Cream. It rejuvenates hands by hydrating and softening them.

Then we have an Inglot silver eyeshadow. I love their eyeshadows: buttery, smooth, lightweight, easy to blend. But I’m not so sure about this silver. It’s very shimmery for me and I’m not much of a silver girl anyway.

Lastly is the Dove Purely Pampering Shea Butter & Vanilla Cream. I haven’t tried this yet but dear god it smells amazing! It is designed to do exactly what it says it does: pamper and nourish while enveloping your senses.

A few extras were also added to the box: Glambox brush which is super soft – loving it, Nstyle voucher, Laser treatment or Ultrasound Cavitation treatment voucher at Wellbeing Medical Center and samples from Herbline Essentials.

Get a free 12 months subscription by using the code GBFREE (only pay for shipping and handling). This code is valid until April 30th. Click here to subscribe. 

Tried any of these products before? Thoughts? 

– Zein xx

FOTD : Hello summer!

March 29, 2014

Summer is finally back in Dubai. Yes, yes. Summer. There is no such thing as spring here. Bikinis, tank tops, shorts and beach dresses are already popped out and the makeup has gone lighter. But no matter how hot it gets, nothing will keep me from piling up layers of makeup. 

The look that I went for today is nothing new, really. It’s actually very similar to what I do everyday for school but with more makeup. It’s like an upgraded version of the everyday look. 

1. Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum – this is actually my summer shade and I’m still a bit pale to use this. So mixed it up with a lighter tinted moisturiser. 
2. Bourjois CC eye cream – I used this under my eyes and around my nose. Click here for a full review!
3. Benefit Highbeam – this was applied to the cheekbones and brow bones. It gives the most beautiful healthy glow.
4. Benefit Agent Zero – I used this only on my T-zone. I’m still testing it out and don’t really know how I feel about it. Have you tried it out? 
5. Urban Decay Sin and MAC Phloof eye shadows – I mixed these two eye shadows that I dusted onto my lids. Using a light eyeshadow on your lid will deepen the crease and will make you look more tanned. Fact. 
6. MAC Gingerly blush – I’m still hooked to this and it’s almost gone. I’ve used this very lightly as the whole look was really subtle. 
7. Bourjois 3D Effect Gloss in Rose Allegoric – this stuff is glossy like crazy! I could see the reflection of my reflection on my lips when I looked in the mirror. Insane. I haven’t been using gloss that much lately, but I love the natural and healthy colour this gives. Plus, it’s so moisturising. Love it!
As you can see, I went for the typical effortless look. Unfortunately, pictures tend to wash out the colours a lot. But after taking pictures, I added a bit more of Gingerly to add up the “tan” and a pop of warm pink on the apples of my cheeks. Of course, I used mascara. I went for a Maybelline one that I found in my stash. It’s terrible! I can’t believe I used to like this crap. I need to find a new mascara, I’m bored of the ones that I have. Recommendations? 
Also, I’ve mentioned in my previous posts that I was ill and I looked terrible. Please, just look at the business happening under my eyes. Actually, the whole eye area is really puffy. On the bright side, I’m recovering and feeling like myself again. Woohoo!
How are you celebrating the start of spring/summer (wherever you are in the world)? 
– Zein xx

On Wednesday we wear pink

March 12, 2014

I’m really not supposed to be writing this right now. I have a four hour economics exam tomorrow and here I am rambling about makeup, not feeling guilty at all. I gave myself a little break to get away from studying (in other words: I’m procrastinating – what I do best) by playing around with my beautiful toys.

Since it is Wednesday, pink is the appropriate colour to go for. Hence, the name of the post. I have a confession to make: I never watched the movie Mean Girls. I know, I know. It’s the first step that introduces you to the teenage life. But I’m still alive, aren’t I?

Starting with the eyes, we have MAC’s All That Glitters eyeshadow. My all time favourite, go-to eyeshadow that, unfortunately, smashed a few days ago *sheds a tear*. It’s not the first time that this shadow appears on the blog. It really brings out the green in my eyes and looks so flattering with my skin tone.

For the cheeks, I found this Bobbi Brown blush in Nectar hidden in mama’s stash a while ago. The pigmentation is cray cray! You literally need the tiniest amount of powder because otherwise it’ll either look like you’ve just been slapped or you’ve got a really bad sunburn. The application has to be like a flower caressing the cheeks. Ouh, I actually felt that just by imagining it.

Lastly, we’ve got two Benefit products for the lips: the new Lollitint – sister of Benetint, and ultra plush lip gloss in Lollibop. I was quite surprised by Lollitint at first. The liquid itself looks more plummy rather than pink. But that changed once I tried it on. When applied onto the cheeks, it is safe to say that it is one of the strongest pinks in my whole collection of blushes. It would look great with a red lip. As for the lip application, it gives nice just bitten extra hard that you’re about to bleed lips. Today, I used this on my lips only and topped it with the gloss which, btw, is my favourite type of lip gloss EVA. The ultra plush glosses are simple divine a) they’re not sticky, b) they smell amazing and c) they’re super smooth. Basically, it’s the type of product that would give a makeup boner. Very appropriate.

That’s all for now! What are your pink (or not pink) products this Wednesday? 

– Zein xx

December’s Glambox

December 31, 2013

I must admit that the feeling of coming back home to a pink box filled with beauty products is pretty amazing. This month’s Glambox came in a bit early. So I had the chance to play with my five new toys before the end of December.

1. Eucerin Lip Balm – this is a blast from the past, for me. The Eucerin Lip Balm was one of the balms that I’ve used and abused during my six months of roaccutane. It contains SPF 6 and it reduces redness around the lips. I’ve haven’t used this for over a year or two now. It is still an amazing lip balm. I highly recommend it, especially for this time of year. Indeed, I have ditched my beloved Beesline lip balm that I’ve raved about for so long. I got so used to it that it doesn’t even moisturise my lips anymore. Nothing worse than dry lips, right?

2. Eucerin Aqua Porin Active Eye Cream – a very refreshing eye cream that is easily absorbed. It reduces signs of tiredness and definitely moisturises. Believe it or not, it is my first eye cream ever. I used to apply a bit of argan oil on my under eye area and it would work perfectly.

3. Nivea Smooth Sensation Body Lotion – this is the only product that I haven’t tried yet. It contains Shea Butter, Ginkgo Extract and Vitamin E for long lasting softness.

4. Inglot Freedom AMC Eye Shadow Square – I was definitely blown away by the texture of this eyeshadow. Very creamy, buttery and luxurious – comparable to Urban Decay shadows. I’ve never tried Inglot shadows. I got a very frosty colour that looks beige in the pan, but turns out to be a blueish grey on the eyelids.

5. Lolita Lempika Elle L’aime Eau du Parfum – this is the newest fragrance from Lolita Lempika, a mix of coconut flower and lime, jasmine and myrrh. I still don’t really know how I feel about this scent. I can’t decide whether I like it or not.

Have you tried any of these products before? Thoughts? Make sure you leave a comment 🙂 

– Zein xx

Makeup : Une’s Pearly eyesadow palette in Grey Harmony

December 21, 2013

I always come across Une products on the Internet, especially on British blogs and Youtube videos. It’s a brand that I’ve never tried before until now. Une recently launched their “Rock by Une” collection introducing two new eyeshadow palettes and a mascara in order to achieve a bold and smokey eye look. A few weeks ago, I received the Grey Harmony palette from the collection.

Although I’ve heard and read great reviews regarding Une products, I didn’t really know what to expect, as I’ve never tried the brand before. All of their products are ecological with 100% ingredients of natural origin.

According to Une, this palette is great “for a chic sfumato that contrasts pearly greige and intense grey with an aubergine note” and “it brings out dark and hazel eyes”. Now, to be completely honest with you, I had absolutely no idea what sfumato meant. If you now feel that you lack of intelligence, like I did when I first read that word, here’s a quick definition for you: the technique of allowing tones and colours to shade gradually into one another, producing softened outlines or hazy forms. Do you feel less ignorant? I do.

The palette contains three colours: a shimmery aubergine, a matte grey and a shimmery greige. This trio is quite perfect for someone like me who isn’t very extravagant with eye looks. It is no surprise that I’m a fan of neutrals. These eyeshadows are so easy to blend and not overly pigmented as you can see in swatches. Of course, you can build up the intensity depending on the look you’re going for.

I’ve been using this palette a lot lately, especially that grey shade. It looks absolutely lovely in the crease with eyeliner along the top lashes and a brown eyeshadow on the lids.

Long story short, loving Une so far!

Have you ever tried any Une products before? Thoughts? 

– Zein xx

FOTD : The Fashion Forward Face – Day 2

October 24, 2013

Fashion Forward day 2 or madness, as I would like to call it, was the busiest day out of the four days of fashion business. You can see what I wore and read about day 2 here. This makeup look is pretty exciting for me because I have dared to wear false lashes for the very first time!

I’ve kept the same base as day one – like I will during the four days – as well as lips. You can check them out here.

The real star of this FOTD are my eyes. After priming them, I used MAC products to create the look. 1. All That Glitters eyeshadow dusted all over the lid. 2. Satin top in the outer corner, blended into the crease and and the lower lash line. 3. A dot of Carbon eyeshadow in the outer v corner. 4. Brule eyeshadow on the brow bone. 5. Blacktrack fluidline on the top lash line (not pictured) . 6. Maybelline the Colossal mascara on top and lower lashes.

This is such a simple Tanya Burr look. For those of you who watch her videos, you’ll get what I mean 😉

And to add the cherry on top, FALSIES! I know, I’m a makeup nerd and I’ve never worn false eyelashes before. Shame. I used the very well-known in the Middle East, Huda Beauty lashes in Giselle. These are so damn dramatic, it’s not even funny. As a falsies newbie, here’s what I thought about false lashes: 1. they felt a bit heavy at first. 2. I could actually see my lashes and felt like a butterfly, haha! You would understand once you try on heavy lashes for the first time, I guess. 3. They instantly give you a face lift. Magic! 4. They enhance the whole look and make you look and feel beautiful. Again, magic!

These lashes in particular are pretty long and full – and probably not the most natural looking lashes out there. But they would be great for an almost natural lash look by night.

Since they felt heavy at first, I had a huge headache from 4pm to 12pm as I got the flu on that day (sorry fashion forward people, you probably all got sick because of me). Note to self: do not wear false lashes when sick.

Have you ever tried false lashes before? Would love to know which ones are your favorite and what was your first impression and experience with falsies. 

– Zein xx

FOTD : The Fashion Forward Face – Day 1

October 20, 2013

Fashion Forward kicked off the first day of the Eid. I was busy all day long so I had to make sure that my makeup lasted throughout the day and stayed flawless. As promised, here’s what my face looked like on day uno.

For my base, I used Benefit’s Stay Flawless primer topped with Sephora’s Light veil foundation. I popped my go-to concealer of the moment, Maybelline’s Dream Lumi Touch, on the under eye area and under the brow bone to brighten up and to do a bit of lifting. I decided to go for the sculpted look. So Bourjois’s Bronzing Primer was applied to the hallows of my cheeks and a generous amount of Benefit’s Highbeam was applied and blended on the cheekbones with this foundation brush and fingers. I then powdered the face with Rimmel’s Stay Matte by applying it only on the T-zone in order to keep the gorgeous healthy glow that the highlighter gave. I added a touch of rosiness to the cheeks with a hint of Lovecloud blush by MAC.

Moving on to the eyes. I started by priming them with Urban Decay’s primer potion – the usual. I dusted Sigma’s eyeshadow in the shade Act (my all-time favourite base to all my looks) and applied a bit of Urban Decay’s Dark Horse on the outer corner, which was later blended into the crease, and a wee bit on the lower lash line. Before finishing off the eyes with a good coat of Benefit’s They’re Real mascara, I went for eyeliner on the top lash line – a look that I’m sporting a lot lately. I used Revlon’s Colorstay liquid eye pen.

As for brows, I filled them with Revlon’s Brow Fantasy – a very handy brow product that I’ve been quite liking lately.

I kept the lips subtle with MAC’s Brave lipstick topped with a pretty old Chanel nude lipgloss. I know I need to throw it away because of its age. Don’t kill me. But it’s Chanel… It deserves to stay. I’m probably going to get sick and have weird skin problems because of this.

Before heading to Fashion Forward, I quickly accentuated my cheekbones by applying MAC’s Gingerly blush to the hallows of the cheeks and MAC’s Soft and Gentle msf to the cheekbones.

I did my hair at the hairdresser’s and asked him to go for the wavy look. Of course, the waves didn’t last a very long time.

Sorry for the poor iPhone quality picture, I barely had time to do a self-photoshoot for my Fashion Forward outfits and makeup looks.

– Zein xx

Dupe alert : Brule vs. Escape

October 11, 2013

I was doing my makeup the other day (just like every normal day) and needed a highlighting eyeshadow. So I reached out for two different eyeshadows. I was caught up in a dilemma, for a second there (the sort of dilemma which only beauty nerds like you and I would have to face) and realised that these two eyeshadows were almost identical. This discovery needed to be celebrated with a dupe post!

The two eyeshadows picked up were MAC’s brule and Sigma’s escape. Both are great highlighting eyeshadows and look a lot alike. The only differences are: 

a- Escape is more pigmented than brule, and… 
b- Brule is a bit chalkier than escape. 
From left to right: Brule; Escape
Escape retails for $11 whereas brule retails for $15 (prices taken from websites). In case you were wondering, I ended up going with brule because I wanted something subtle. So there you have it, a short and sweet dupe post. 
What is your latest dupe discovery? Have you ever tried these eyeshadows? 
– Zein xx

Beauty tips : Getting ready for school – take 2

September 11, 2013

I’ve discovered a very interesting fact about myself this year: I’m so not a morning person. Well, it’s nothing new. Mother dearest knew it all along but I was always in denial – typical Zein. Not being a morning person gives me about two minutes to do makeup and not be late. But I’m always late – again, typical Zein. So here’s how I would do my makeup everyday for school..

First, I discovered that the Benefit Stay Flawless primer is an instant skin enhancer. A wee bit of that all over the face is a good start to fool people into thinking I wake up looking pretty and flawless when it’s not really the case. Then a good concealer like MAC’s Studio Finish Concealer (been using this for ages!) should do the trick to hide whatever needs to be hidden. Both products don’t need a brush to be applied. Thumbs up for time savers! 

I then move on to eye primer – something I can’t live without. Urban Decay’s Primer Potion is normally what I go for. If I wanted a bit of color, Sigma’s Eye Shadow Base in Pose or Revlon’s Smoky Shadow stick are as great as the Primer Potion and both can be applied/blended with fingers. If I had a bit of time, which is extremely rare, I would choose a subtle eyeshadow to dust all over the lid. Finish off the eye look with a good coat of mascara. I’ve gone back to using the Maybelline Colossal one, at the moment. Eyes done!
As for blush, I just grab whatever appears in front of my face and make a bit of effort to blend it well. 
Et voila! That is all I do, really. No Effort, hardly any brushes and time saving. As for lips, I slap on any clear lip balm on my way to school. If the look turns out to be a bit cakey, a good mist would do the job like Jane Iredale’s Pommisst or Urban Decay’s All Nighter. Both love love love! As for brows, I don’t even bother looking at them. I just quickly brush them with my fingers in the elevator, on my way down.
I try to keep all the face products used in a small pouch which I keep with me in case of emergencies. And I always have my Rimmel Stay Matte powder with a big fluffy brush for touch ups with me. If I don’t have time to do any of that at home, I’d go and hibernate in the girl’s bathroom and do my makeup in front of everyone. Awkward.
How would you do your makeup for school/work?
– Zein xx

Makeup : Revlon’s Colorstay Smoky Shadow Stick

September 7, 2013

I’ve been kind of obsessing over primers lately, specially eye primers. To continue my little primer saga, I decided that it would be the perfect occasion to blog about a little gem that I grabbed at the airport on my way back home, a few weeks ago. Normally, at the duty free, I tend to contemplate and gift myself with something from the Chanel and Dior counters. However, this time I did some serious damage at the Revlon counter and ended with this little beauty along with other products.

Some drugstore products are not available in the UAE. So I have a hard time finding recommendations by bloggers/vloggers living in Europe or the US. The Revlon Smoky Shadow Sticks are one of the products that I’ve never seen in Dubai, unless I’m starting to have poor eyesight.

The chosen shade is Torch and, as you can see, it’s a double ended stick with a pretty pink toned highlighting shade and a gorgeous bonze. Both colors are shimmery and glide on so smoothly onto the eyes. This type of stuff is excellent for school or work – it can be popped on directly from the stick and then blended with fingers in less than two seconds. And it doesn’t crease! I initially picked this up expecting that the champagne pink shade would turn out looking, well, pink. It rather looks like a creamy pink toned white in swatches, a bit like Phloof from MAC. This was a a bit of a disappointment for me… But I love using it in the tear duct area and on the brow bone. It does an amazing job at making you look awake when you actually had only three hours of sleep!

I highly recommend this product if you need to accomplish a go-to ‘presentable’ look in less than a minute or in the car if you’re in a rush. I believe you can find it at the duty free but not in drugstores (in Dubai, not the rest of the world). So next time you travel, make sure you stop at the Revlon counter and have a look at it 😉

What is your go-to primer/eye shadow base? 

– Zein xx