@Longchamp Behind the scenes of the creation of our new Amazone handbag. (4 of 4)

Happy National Handbag Day! (October 10, 2018)

It’s the 6th National Handbag Day!

I actually haven’t acquired any new handbags for some time, nor do I have any seriously on my wishlist. So, to mark the occasion on this blog, I’ll do a quick roundup of 10 bags in my collection that I need to wear more often.

Adrienne Vittadini

Lenox Drawstring Pouch in Silver

I bought this ages ago, and I’m not sure why I rarely use it, since it is actually extremely comfortable to wear and holds a good amount! The leather is soft and subtly metallic. Aaah, I need to dig it out now!
Adrienne Vittadini — Lenox Drawstring Pouch in Silver

Badgley Mischka

Jill Crossbody in Black

The main reason I don’t wear this as much is that the strap is a bit too long. I need to just go get an extra hole or two punched into the strap.
Badgley Mischka — Jill Crossbody in Black

Chloé

Marcie Medium Satchel in Tan

My second-favorite bag of all-time, and yet, I don’t wear it as often as I should. Honestly, it is heavy and that is why I use it infrequently. Note to self: work out more so you can take Marcie out! Chloé has actually recently released a slightly smaller version of the Marcie which is just perfect for me. Maybe next year…
Chloé — Marcie Medium Satchel in Tan

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Perfume Notes (October 2018)

Instead of doing a perfume roundup this month for the scents I’ve tested, I thought I’d do a little organization, instead. While I have been rather disappointed by a great number of the new releases I’ve tried, there are still plenty of scents I missed out on over the years, and for which I am now pining. Here’s my current wishlist, divvied up into several different categories.

Top 10: Definite Wishlist

fivezero's Top 10: Definite Wishlist perfumes

Annick Goutal — Rose Absolue

1984 | May rose, Turkish rose, Bulgarian rose, Damascus rose, Egyptian rose, Moroccan rose

I’m a rose lover, and this is one of the ultimates. Rose, rose, and even more rose.

Annick Goutal — Rose Pompon EDP

2018
Bulgarian rose, Taïf rose, peony, blackcurrant, raspberry, pink pepper, cedar, patchouli, white musk

Fruity rose with a some sophistication about it…and actually I just bought it. Hudson’s Bay is having a 10% off any $75+ beauty order this weekend, so I took advantage and it will be part of my upcoming birthday gift! (It’s quite different from the EDT, by the way. Test both. I didn’t like the EDT, as I found it a bit sharp and overly sweet.)

Annick Goutal — Vanille Exquise

2004 | Isabelle Doyen, Camille Goutal
vanilla sur-absolute from the Marquisas Islands, angelica, almond, benzoin, gaiac wood, white musk

A divinely dry, complicated vanilla.

Berdoues — Vânira Moorea

2016 | Alexandra Monet
Tahitian vanilla, orange, petitgrain

This is a unique vanilla in that it’s not all sweet and warm and fluffy. It’s a crisp, green vanilla. Weird vanilla, and I’m fascinated by it.

Britney Spears — Fantasy Intimate

2015
lychee, violet leaf, lemon, ozone, lily-of-the-valley, jasmine, brown sugar, genet, vanilla, heliotrope, benzoin, white musk

So easy to love, and in a pretty bottle, as well. The longevity on me is superior to that of most other Britney scents I’ve tried. I still love Private Show the best, but that doesn’t last well on my skin.

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Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid (21) via Tester Korea

Mamonde — Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid Review

Over the next week or so, I will be reviewing several Korean beauty products sent to me by one of my favorite Korean beauty online shops, Tester Korea. I have reviewed my experience with them in the past; they have a different selection of brands from a few others that I use, and their prices are very competitive. My favorite thing about them is you can request brands and products and they’ll try to get them in stock!

Today’s review is for Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid SPF34/PA++. I’ve been a fan of a couple of Mamonde’s skincare items, and I’m glad to be trying something from their makeup line for the first time.

Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid is a liquid foundation/BB cream that comes in a cushion compact, the form factor that started in South Korea and has become all the rage in the West over the last few years, as well.

Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid in 21

Personally, I think cushion compacts are good for travel and touch-ups, but otherwise I never use them. I don’t think you get very much bang for your buck: for example, this one contains 0.45 oz / 13 g, compared with standard liquid foundation bottles which typically contain more than twice that amount, around 1 oz / 30 mL. Secondly, I hesitate to use the included sponge too much, since you keep touching it to your face, back to the cushion, and so on. Not hygienic! At home, when I use a liquid foundation, I use clean hands or a clean makeup sponge, and never double-dip-dirty. The only reason I ever use a cushion compact is to have it on the go, since they’re so easy to just slip into a handbag—I just need to remember to wash the applicator sponge, and its tray in the compact, when I get home. Well, that, and they do come in very cute compacts, sometimes!

Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid in 21

From Mamonde:

  • Makeup is flawless thanks to finer cover powder made with Fine Pixel Cover™ technology and the reflecting effect of the Volume Up Light Powder™
  • Glow and shine with the Hydro Coating LiquidCover™! Puff made of soft material makes makeup stay to the skin to look smooth and flawless!
  • Liquid foundation in an airtight package to retain its color!
    More convenient than foundation and more exquisite than cushion!
  • Hydro Coating Liquid™ developed from Preserved Flower Technology gives a glow and shine to the makeup, and the combination of film forming material and moisturizing ingredients form a barrier over the skin to give a shiny, hydrated-looking finish to the makeup.

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a;t fox Tea Toc Water Cream via Tester Korea

a;t fox — Tea Toc Water Cream Review

Over the next week or so, I will be reviewing several Korean beauty products sent to me by one of my favorite Korean beauty online shops, Tester Korea. I have reviewed my experience with them in the past; they have a different selection of brands from a few others that I use, and their prices are very competitive. My favorite thing about them is you can request brands and products and they’ll try to get them in stock!

Today’s review is for a;t fox‘s Tea Toc Water Cream. I’d never heard of this Korean brand before, but apparently they do have a presence in a couple of US-based CVS and UK-based Boots drugstores. The brand’s tagline is “afternoon tea time!” and many of their products include tea as a key ingredient.

a;t fox Tea Toc Water Cream

Tea Toc Water Cream is a lightweight, translucent green gel that claims to reduce sebum and moisturize the skin. It contains green tea (Camellia sinensis) as an active ingredient, as well as a veritable cornucopia of additional plant extracts such as Centella asiatica (of which I’m a fan), licorice, aloe, rosemary, and chamomile. I was slightly worried about the presence of rosemary extract, since I have had allergic reactions to other products containing it (although I cannot be sure rosemary was the culprit). Luckily, I have had no reactions to Tea Toc Water Cream. Either rosemary isn’t really an issue for my skin, or it’s not present in the right quantity (or perhaps form?) in this product.

The cream can be used as a normal facial moisturizer, or as a sleeping mask. The instructions advise using twice the amount for use as a sleeping mask.

a;t fox Tea Toc Water Cream

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Haulage! Shoppers Drug Mart / beautyBOUTIQUE (September 2018), Joe Fresh clearance

Haulage! Joe Fresh clearance at Shoppers Drug Mart (September 2018)

Over the last few months, Loblaw, a Canadian grocery and pharmacy retailing giant, has been making a lot of changes to their online luxury beauty store, beautyBOUTIQUE.

For one, they changed their website from beautyboutique.ca to keep it under their Shoppers Drug Mart umbrella at beauty.shoppersdrugmart.ca. This redirects to beauty.shoppersdrugmart.ca/beauty-boutique, which seems a little redundant to me.

Anyway, secondly, they added a regular Beauty section to the Luxury Beauty section! This means that Canadians can now purchase a wide variety (though not a full selection) of drugstore beauty products online via Shoppers. This is great news for me—I’ve been sending messages about this to Shoppers whenever they ask for suggestions—since I hate having to hit up a few different locations just to find the all products I want.

I’ve noticed that there are still some growing pains. For example, not all brands are available online (L’Occitane and quite a few perfume brands in the luxury section). The weekly sales are not always posted at the right time. The database is a bit wonky: Mid- and lower-priced brands (Calgon, J.R. Watkins, Marcelle, Pixi, Cake Beauty, all lower-end fragrances) show up in the Luxury section. There are some other oddities: Vasanti is under Luxury, but similarly-priced Nude by Nature and Consonant Skincare are slotted into regular Beauty; Strivectin is Luxury but Fekkai and Redken are filed under regular Beauty.

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fivezero's Luckyscent fragrance/perfume sample haulage (September 2018)

Mini Haulage! Lucky Scent Fragrance Samples (2018)

Happy Friday, everybody! I have been AWOL from the land of nail polish for many months, and my renewed obsession with perfume has taken over.

I had been on a bit of a perfume hiatus for about three years, from 2014 to late last year, mainly because I was having kids and wasn’t fussed with scented things at all for that period. Now that the kids are both bigger tots, I’ve revived my interest in perfume.

The kids are loving it, as well. They enjoy testing a scent on their shirtsleeves while I’m browsing the testers in-store; Peanut (who’s now 4 and in kindergarten!) always picks an interesting-looking bottle and claims that it smells the way it looks. So something like Versace Dylan Blue “smells like blueberries!” (No, it doesn’t!) But, by default, everything smells like “Strawberries!” or “Potato juice!” I don’t understand that last one, either. Olive, who is now 2, does a little dab to mimic me sniffing my wrists, even though she’s not wearing any scent.

So, I’ve spent the last nine months or so catching up on all the new department store releases I’ve been able to get my hands on.

I found many new loves in both the designer realm (Love by Chloé, Jean Paul Gaultier Classique Essence de Parfum, Lanvin Me), among the drugstore offerings (Elizabeth Arden Untold Absolu, Jessica Simpson Fancy, Britney Spears Private Show), and in that space between (MAC Créme d’Nude and Velvet Teddy, Aramis Calligraphy Rose). I’ve even discovered a few beauties from decades past (Chanel Cristalle EDP, Chloé Narcisse, Elizabeth Taylor Diamonds & Rubies).

Niche-land, however, is where I’ve yet to explore further. I’ve dabbled a bit (Serge Lutens Un Bois Vanille, Etat Libre d’Orange Fils de Dieu, Berdoues Assam of India), but there’s a massive world of niche out there that seems exponentially larger now than it was when I last visited it.

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New Release: Julep — October 2018 “Up All Night”

Collection: Julep 2018 October “Up All Night”

Julep’s October 2018 collection consists of five new and one repromoted shades of deep and rich nail colors, plus two new shades of Take a Breather Oxygen Nail Treatment (8 mL for $18 / $14.40 Maven): Sheer Orchid and Sheer Peach.

From Julep:

The beauty of darkness is everything it lets shine. Like stars in the sky, these shimmer and glitter finishes thrive in the depths of darkness.

Here are the two nail treatments and six polishes for October:

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