Pages - Menu

Friday, July 31, 2015

Friday Finds.

Here are a few finds (and loves) over the www this past week:

\\  This super easy DIY vanilla rose sugar scrub sounds good enough to eat.  //
\\  If you've been reading the blog over the past few weeks, you'd know that I'm going healthy. This banana raspberry "ice cream" sounds so good, minus the guilt.  //
\\  These pastel zebra nails are so pretty!  //
\\  I'm already looking for fashion inspiration for the upcoming Springtime. This yellow & stripe outfit is everything.  //
\\  Okay, you know what? Fuck the healthy. I can't even with this Nutella s’mores puff pastry pop tart recipe.  //
\\  Jesse and I saw this card just yesterday. It's safe to say that we share a sense of humour.  //

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

July BellaBox Unboxing

This month's box is aptly named 'Beauty Wanderer' and is all about travel.
Fitting since July quite the popular time for us Aussies to head overseas to escape the Winter weather. This month's bounty consists of travel suitable products - all of which I would consider a suitcase necessity.

Here's what I got:

ModelCo Shadow Stick in 'Costa Rica'
Despite looking like a mini tampon (sorry), the slide-up container is incredibly convenient. The creamy eyeshadow glides over the eyelid wonderfully and is easily blended out. This shade, with it's touch of shimmer, is the perfect inner eye highlight when building a smoky eye. For such a light shade, I was actually surprised by how pigmented the formula is. Being both buildable and crease resistant, it also looks great on top of powdered eyeshadow for that extra pop, and also doubles as an excellent highlighter for your cheekbones and brow bone.
RRP: $39.00 (Pack of 4)

Nuxe Cleansing Milk with Rose Petals
This has such a luxurious name.
I've tried several creams and milks over the years and they have all left an unpleasant waxy coating on my face, even after rinsing with water. This one feels great on my skin and rinses clean though the directions say you can just tissue it off. It has an rich, smooth texture and claims to cleanse and remove make-up while protecting the skin from dryness with a non-oily finish. I found this to be super gentle on my sensitive skin, which was left feeling very smooth, and nourished, minus those tight, dry spots around my nose and mouth which have always been an issue for me. As far as the make-up removing properties, it isn't great at removing eye make-up of any kind - even the non-waterproof variety. I'd recommend using a good micellar solution beforehand and following with this as a facial cleanser, rather than make-up remover. The 'Rose Petal' line is geared toward more "mature" skin but I think it would be great for sensitive skin of any age. I'm not a huge fan of rose scents, however in this product has only a light, mild rose smell - it's clean and pleasant and does not bother me at all. 
RRP: $26.99

Bioderma Atoderm Intensive Soothing Emollient Care
This claims to deeply nourish skin, restructuring the barrier, leaving it soft and moisturised and more resistant to atopic skin conditions (eczema etc.). The texture is thick, creamy and there is no scent, making it perfect for sensitive skin. On top of being sensitive, my legs have always been dry and unbearably itchy and no matter how much cream I slather on, nothing has worked long-term; I tried this last night and it instantly calmed the irritation and stopped the itch - heaven. The cream was instantly absorbed deep in to my skin where it's needed most and didn't leave a waxy or greasy residue. It spreads out so easily, a little bit goes a long way. I'm definitely buying myself a full sized bottle as soon as possible. This is actually a Godsend.
RRP: $32.99

Palmolive Body Polish Shower Gels in 'Passionfruit' & 'Strawberry'
These adorable 45mL bottle are the perfect size for my gym bag.
I love how natural Palmolive has gone with their body polish line - each bottle contains real fruit extracts, which equals antioxidants, and gritty seeds, which equal great exfoliators. These are somewhere between sugar scrubs, and regular shower gel - they are far more gentle than a rough sugar scrub, but far more effective at exfoliating those cells than a regular gel. These lather up so luxuriously and my skin was left feeling smooth and moisturised. The smell? Ah-mazig! They smell so good I could eat them (note: do not eat shower gel), and the cheerful scent follows me around all day.
RRP: $6.79 each

Neutrogena Make-up Remover Cleansing Towelettes
I've always tried my best to avoid make-up removing wipes. They're sticky, they sting, they strip your skin.. they're not fantastic. I rarely need wipes as I have gotten pretty good at washing my face before bed every night but I've always got a pack on my table on the rare occasion I'm feeling too lazy (read: drunk). These wipes are far more gentle than any other brand I've tried, and are pretty decent at removing make-up. The wipes themselves are soft and the slight residue they leave behind feels like a lotion, not greasy or sticky at all and absorbs quickly, leaving my skin unexpectedly soft and moisturised. These are scented, however, so it can be a bit scary around the eyes if you're sensitive to that kind of thing. Despite the scent, these didn't necessarily sting my eyes (although a bit of scrubbing was required to remove my waterproof mascara). I could feel a tingle, but there was no unpleasant burn. Best of all, a tenderness I had noticed around my eyes when using other wipes wasn't present at all.
RRP: $7.99

Essie Nail Polish in 'Haute in the Heat'

Another nail polish to add to my ever increasing pile. Essie is by far my favourite nail polish brand, so it's always a welcome addition to my BellaBox. The colour I received is what I could best describe as raspberry. It's a bright, hot pink that would look fabulous during the Summer.
RRP: $8.95

BONUS: Compeed Blister Patch
not photographed
RRP: $12.95 (Pack of 5)

All in all, I definitely enjoyed this month's box. It came in wonderful time considering I'm going away in three weeks, I don't doubt that most of these samples will make their way in to my luggage, and anything left over will surely become a gym bag/handbag staple.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Beauty Hack: DIY Cinnamon 'Botox'

I wasn't visited by the plump lip fairy as a newborn. In fact, I'm 99.9% sure that I was visited by the flat lip fairy as a newborn. As a teen, lip plumper or venom was always a product that I wanted to like more than I actually did. They were expensive, the results were minimal, and the ingredients.. don't get me started.

In to my twenties and still conscious about the size of my pout, I did some research and I discovered that cinnamon is a natural lip plumper (peppermint works wonders, too). It irritates the skin, causing blood to flow to the area and the lips to swell slightly.

It isn't as scary as it sounds - I promise. I've had this sneaky trick in my beauty arsenal for years now and it's been a real confidence booster. Even better, you can pick up a bottle of cinnamon oil for peanuts nowadays. I say "no more!" to spending upwards of $30 on ineffective lip plumpers. If you're willing to spend a whole 30 seconds of your time doing a little DIY, you can create your own for under $10.

All you need is the following:

- A good base. I've used shea butter, lipgloss, melted chapstick.. whichever you prefer
- 100% cinnamon OR peppermint essential oil.
- Vitamin E cream (optional)
- A small, airtight jar

Just combine, mix, and there you go.

In terms of essential oil proportion, this procedure is all about trial and error; I cannot express how irritating cinnamon oil can be enough. Start with just one drop of oil mixed in with your base and work from there - everyone's different. I use 4-5 drops of oil per ½ ounce jar/lip gloss tube. This is perfect for me, but this really depends on your lip sensitivity.

Once you've found the perfect combination for you, combine your mish-mash of ingredients in your container of choice and voila! OR you can quite literally just add a few drops of oil to your favourite lip gloss and pump the wand a few times to mix it all through.

Note: Any amount of oil is likely to give off a tingling sensation when applied to your lips, but if you experience a burning sensation, you've gone too far. In this case, wash the product off immediately and don't trial again for a few days.

Notenote: For the love of fuck, DO NOT put essential oil of any kind directly on to your lips, it's potent stuff and will burn you worse than the fourth floor of hell.

Of course, this is only a temporary effect - nothing is going to transform the actual size of my lips, but this has been my sneaky little confidence booster for years. It's a perfect, portable solution to plump lips that can be touched up throughout the day and being cheap and easy to make, you really can't go wrong.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Friday Finds.

Here are my finds (and loves) from over the past week:

\\  This tomato, avocado & burrata salad on grilled garlic toast reminds me of Subway.. Only fancy. Yum, especially over the Summertime.  //
\\  DIY Lace Up Sandals - Yesss! Gone are the days of having to spend over $150 on a pair of sandals I can now make myself.  //
\\  I'm a major lover of anything black and gold. These nails are no exception.  //
\\  I love the idea of making my own soaps. How cool do these tie dye soaps look? Definitely prettier than plain old DIY soap.  //
\\  I died and went to vegetarian heaven when I saw a recipe for zucchini "meatballs".  //
\\  Oh gosh - veggie kabob macarons! If I weren't so lazy, and was able to draw, even a little bit, I'd do this to all the macarons.  //

Happy Friday, kids.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Friday Finds.

Here are some finds (and loves) from over the past week:

\\ These late night snacksicles are literally the best thing I've ever heard of. //
\\ Try saying coffee ice cream hot fudge sundae pie with macaroon crust five times fast. Then eat the shit out of that thing just as quickly. Yum! //
\\ I died when I saw these rainbow sugar cookie ice cream sandwiches. My two loves, combined. //
\\ How cute are these DIY cactus pincushions?! //
\\ I tried this sweet, yet savoury honey pistachio pesto pizza the other night and boy is it good. //
\\ I love this workout idea! Such an easy way to get things done. //

It would seem that all this gym business has made my subconscious appreciate food that much more.

Happy Friday, kids!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

My Month on Instagram - June.

If you've been following Christie's Take on Life for any amount of time, you'd surely know by now that I'm a major lover of Instagram! It's the perfect outlet for posting inspiration and little snippets of life, and seeing what my favourite bloggers and friends are up to.

There are so many times my Instagram posts never make it to my blog, and that's a damn shame because I consider myself to be quite the photographer..
..Not really, but it's a shame nonetheless.

Instalife the past month looked something like this:

I ate more Kookies n Kream Krispy Kreme's in June than I'd like to admit. Looking at this photo now that I'm on this stupid diet (possibly due to said amount of Kookies n Kream Krispy Kreme's consumed over the month) is making my mouth water.

This is what happens when you combine Christie + best friend + Vodka (maths is fun).
I'll just leave this here for your perusal..

Gone are my pretty orange leaf filled lunchtime walks.
Somewhere between this photo and now, Winter hit. Hard.

If you have a Hogs Breath Cafe anywhere near you, and they offer you two cocktails for $21, I recommend you go right ahead and stick to one. I learnt my lesson: these things are deadly.

June was the month of ball spam here on Christie's Take on Life. So without further ado: here's more ball spam!

This is such shitty quality, and I look like a thumb but let's all just take a moment to appreciate that detailing on my dress. Yup.

and of course, what kind of blogger would I be if I didn't post pictures of my hair and makeup. #Blasphemous

The girls at The Body Shop did such a wonderful job of my black and gold smokey look, it warrants such a scarily close-up photo of my face.

Winter and hot chocolate. Is there any better combination? I've had about 40 of these bad boys over the course of the month. Not even mad.

I love finding new bloggers on Instagram; leave your account deets in the comments!

Friday, July 10, 2015

Friday Finds.

Here's what I've found (and loved) this week:

\\  This messy pony with a braid accent is too adorably boho for me to handle.  //
\\  This is basically my life in shirt form.  //
\\  I'm a sucker for cutesy, and I'm a sucker for candles. Well then here you go, Christie, try these lollipop candles on for size. I die.  //
\\  Excuse me did someone say hashbrown 'casserole'?! My life is complete.  //
 \\  These shoes though. Love!  //
\\  Coconut meringues with pineapple curd fillingALL the goodness of pina colada, in a dessert.  // 

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Six Places I Need to See Before I Die.

Ever since reading Kathie's 5 places on my travel list post, I've been hit by that Wonderlust thing people are talking about. Truth be told: I don't travel well. A car trip makes me all kinds of sick, being on a train scares me, getting on a plane? Forget about it. I'm terrified of planes but that doesn't mean I don't dream of exploring a place I've never been before, experiencing a whole new way of living. I think we all have those places in mind; dream destinations that may or may not ever become a reality. So, for the sake of daydreaming:

(in no particular order)

I remember Italian was my favourite subject throughout my junior primary school years. The teachers were horrible, my belly would always rumble because it was right before lunch, but for as long as I can remember, learning about the Italian culture was my favourite and Italy has always been somewhere I want to visit. Rome, Venice, Tuscany, Capri - you name it - I've lusted over it. The food, the romance, the history, the architecture. Say no more.

I'm embarrassed to admit: It wasn't An Affair to Remember that first got me interested in Paris rather, an episode of The Hills. I watched as Lauren and Whitney introduced me to the high-end fashion and the romance the city has to offer. Fast forward a few years, I enviously watch all the glamorous going's on as Gossip Girl sees Blair and Serena prancing all around Paris to forget their boy troubles (as you do). I don't speak a drop of French, but since that faithful day my 14 year-old self watched on as Lauren popped a bottle of champagne under the Eiffel Tower with a scruffy Frenchman, I've been in love with, inspired by, obsessed over Paris.

The Maldives
I'm a beach bum at heart - The Maldives' crystalline blue waters contrasted against pure white sand makes this destination more than okay by me. It's a damn shame these islands are often overlooked - Although it has quickly become one of my most lusted over destinations, if it had not been for the beautiful images on Pinterest, a Maldivian holiday wouldn't have even crossed my mind a year ago. It's beautiful, it's tropical, it's tranquil and there's a freaking glowing ocean.
This is the meaning of life.

Los Angeles / New York
This really is two places, but.. 'MERICA. Case and point.
I've always thought of America as a place of wonder and opportunity - a supersized version of the world I've been living in. There’s something new around every corner, the food is bigger, the shopping is better, the cities are larger. When I think of America, I think of fast-paced city living. That's why I've always been excited by the prospect of Visiting New York. Sex in the City was what first got me hooked on the glamour of the Big Apple. That iconic skyline, the clubs and the bars, the galleries, Times Square. New York can change in a minute, and that excites me.
Then there's Los Angeles because, famous people. That's why. I'm a walking cliché: I want to stroll the walk of fame, I want to shop Rodeo Drive, I want to go crazy in Disneyland, I want to take a ride along Sunset Boulevard. I want to L.A.

Anywhere. I don't care. Just get me to Greece. Ever since The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants, the beautiful villages of Santorini have been a must-see. In my opinion, it is one of the most diverse places - a combination of landscapes that can rarely be found together anywhere else. You can be in the midst of Santorini's structured hills one moment, and inside one of the many picturesque nooks, caves crannies scattered over the Greek Islands the next; It's remarkable.

If for nothing else, I want to visit Tokyo for the gadgets. The Japanese are of the forefront of technology, and I could spend hours shopping completely unnecessary, but totally awesome knick-knacks along the neon-lit streets. Can we talk about those neon-lit streets for a sec? What I wouldn't give to see Tokyo at night. It's so bright, so vibrant, so alive! Upscale bars, packed dance clubs, karaoke lounges - the nightlife seems irresistible. Yet, for such a highly urbanized city, I've heard Tokyo has many beautiful, tranquil gardens, shrines and temples (seriously, Google The Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden). Escaping the bright, busy city for an hour and two and taking a stroll through a serene park would be pure bliss.

Just looking at these pictures all morning has given the an incurable case of the travel bug. What is your number one must-go destination?

Friday, July 3, 2015

Friday Finds.

Here's all I've found (and loved) over the past week:

\\  I LOVE the way Kayla has styled this boho maxi. I'm heartbroken that it's sold out.  //
\\  I've been doing this tease & tie thing all week. It's cute and takes a whole 3 seconds to do.  //
\\  However thought to combine macarons and icecream, creating macaron icecream is my hero.  //
\\  Easy peasy DIY teacup garland - How cute!  //
\\  I've always loved Meira T's dainty jewellery, but this layered combo is gorgeous.  //
\\  I can't even with this brown butter shortbread & coconut cream parfait recipe. Oh lawdy.  //

Happy Friday, kids.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

June Lookback & July Goals.

There's nothing better than that feeling of accomplishment. Sitting down this morning with a mug of hot tea and realising that I had miraculously managed to complete all of the goals I had set for myself over the course of my crazy June (saywuttt?!) made me feel all kinds of happy things:

Set up a proper PR page

Decide on ball hair & makeup

Buy some freakin' matcha
$50 later. -_- I STILL haven't made this smoothie, though. Which was the whole reason behind wanting to buy matcha in the first place. Whoops.

A date night EVERY Wednesday
We're so cute. As much as I love laying in bed in front of the TV, going out and doing cute things as a couple has made a world of difference to our relationship. It breaks up the week nicely as well.

Don't murder anyone
I did it! I freakin' did it. 
I came pretty close to failing, but I did it. Hoo-FUCKING-Ray!


Figure out and stick to a regular gym schedule
Yes, I, Christie Brown, joined a gym. I've not even been yet, and I feel a deep self-pitty. I'm actually quite determined to make it a regular, scheduled thing, and stick to it for the next 18 months but something tells me that it'll be fun for a week, then I'll never go again, while they rub their hands together and laugh while they take money out of my account each month.
Must. Gym. Always.

Eat less crap
I wouldn't go so far as to say 'eat healthy', because homegirl over here just can't. Aiming to cut out snacking on junk food throughout the week, and stop eating nothing but takeaway on the weekends is a more realistic target.

Plan and book some time off
That pay raise I was dancing about on Tuesday? It came from a glowing annual performance review. One point in said review was that I have waaayyy too much annual leave accrued. Time to plan some time off, me thinks.

Go to the dentist
This was my goal waaayyy back in May and surprise, surprise I still haven't been. Whoops. It really is something that I need to bite (Bite? Teeth? Dentist?? I'm hilarious) the bullet and do because that tiny hole in my molar ain't getting any better.


Wednesday, July 1, 2015

June Beauty Favourites.

Oh June. Between the crazy working week you deliver and the terrible Wintery weather, you really are the bane of my existence. Being at an accounting firm, July is basically the start of a new year for me. We start everything afresh, and Spring is one month closer. Those end of financial year sales don't do any harm, either amirite.

My skin is dry, my hair is frizzy, my lips are chapped.. Let's just say it's not been an attractive month for old mate Christie over here. These nourishing favourites of mine have all been used like crazy over our freezing cold June, deeming it acceptable for me to be seen out in public. (read: It tames the flakey, puffy beast of hideous-ness that I resemble upon waking)

I think this would have to be the most natural product I own. The fact that all the ingredients are natural and pH balanced is the biggest tick of approval in my book. I've got to begin by mentioning that packaging! The bottle comes in the cutest little milk carton box, and the product itself comes in a hygienic pump bottle which delivers the perfect amount of cream every time. I find that one pump is all I need for each application, meaning one bottle is going to last you a long time. The moisturiser does take longer than most to sink into the skin and leaves soft film- which is due to a lack of silicon in the product, but it's not a greasy film, more of a soft barrier which is barely noticeable once fully absorbed anyways. The scent is 100% natural and lingers on the skin for quite some time. find the smell lovely- a pleasant milky almond so I'm not complaining. I don't find it rich enough to give that much needed boost of moisture to really dry areas, so I mainly use it on my hands and up my arms during the day, or apply a few layers to my face over night. Wherever I use it, it has never irritated my sensitive easily-aggravated skin, and I find when I do use it on my face during the daymy make-up has that dewy, glowing look.

I love the fact that this has a twist pump - making it sanitary, and delivering just the right amount needed to completely moisturise your face. This goes on creamy and absorbs, leaving my skin with a glow that's not shiny or greasy. Even better, my make-up wears so well in conjunction with it (liquids, powders, crèmes, you name it)! I know the SPF (15) isn't that high, but really I can't wear a high rated one - they're always so greasy and my oily patches just can't. I was actually wary of this one when I saw there was even SPF15 in it, but it works wonderfully on my skin, and I do think it's helping to improve tone and texture. I had my doubts about the brightening it claims to give and I haven't seen anything to support that fact yet, but it does give me a subtle 'glow' due to it's natural light diffusers, which is good enough for me!

In all honesty, this lipstick is a favourite this month more for the colour than the lipstick itself. Because. dat. colour. Oh lawdy. It's a beautiful peachy-coral shade that compliments my eyes and skin tone perfectly. It was given to me by the woman who did my make-up for the ball and it just finished off my overall look - a fantastic pick on her behalf. The formula is incredibly lightweight, and surprisingly long-lasting. It glides on so smoothly, leaving a semi-glossy finish, and being infused with rose scent, it smells pretty fantastic too. I was assured it wouldn't bleed, but alas, it did. Nothing that can't be managed with the good old concealer around the lips trick (as I discovered on the second use). Being so creamy and rich in moisture, it doesn't dry out your lips, nor accentuate those not-so-flattering flaky patches. All in all, a good colour but the formula could do with a tweak or two. Regardless, this has become my lipstick pick ever since.

Four: It's A 10 Miracle Leave-In Plus Keratin
I was put on to this by a friend who, basically, was sick of hearing me whining about my dry, brittle hair. It smooths everything out nicely and gives a good dose of hydration AND protein - just what I've been needing! I personally wouldn't recommend using it any more than three times a week, however, for fear of protein overload but it's a good now-and-then treat for damaged hair. It works well as a post blow-dry smoothing serum and on dry hair to smooth things out. Most commonly, though, I apply it onto damp hair after my shower and focus the product on the ends. Once my hair has completely dried it feels soft, smooth and healthy. It really controls frizz all day long and doesn't feel sticky, crunchy or greasy - rather more lively and looks shinier with every use. Smells lovely too!

It's so hard for me to find a good facial cleanser. My skin is either left too oily or too dry. I've not yet found the perfect wash for my bizarre skin, but this one is by far the closest I've come. It's is a lovely scrub for everyday use - so gentle and non-irritating, yet so incredibly effective. It lightly exfoliates, vastly improving texture the texture of my skin, leaving no dry, flaky patches in sight. Though not particularly "brightening" despite its claims, my skin is left smooth, soft, and even which is all I ask of my cleansing products.

Sharing is Caring!