Skin & Eyelashes: L’Oreal + Clinique

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AF Beauty

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Hello again APJ Beauty Addicts!

In a post from waaay back when, I wrote about finding Clinique’s Custom Serum – still one of my top beauty products. I am so enticed by the novelty of the new and the promise of each new product that I rarely rebuy something because either it didn’t deliver what it promised or something else promised more.

Skin & Eyelashes: L’Oreal + Clinique

In the few exceptions a headline act is Clinque’s Custom Serum. So, when Clinique released a new product I was a little bit excited and hoped to look 20 years younger. This new product was Turnaround Revitalising Oil.

Clinique

The oil is a very interesting texture – the thinness of water rather than a cooking oil, but still somewhat oily. I say somewhat because it is peculiar in that it absorbs very quickly on plain skin while also leaving a very slight oily feel. Weird. As with all Clinique products it has no added fragrance – I get it. But in my heart, I want things that smell nice – and this smells like a dirty oil extracted from an engine – which is not overly enjoyable for one’s face.

Added to the sadness of the smell is also the lack of information as to how you’re supposed to use the product. I had determined that I should use it in the same manner as Clarins’ oils – I’ve also tried adding a bit of the oil to my moisturiser – but truth be told neither method led to my immediate youthfulness but I am hoping it will provide that boost that skin needs through winter. Verdict – undecided.

Another feature from a previous post was my search for tubing mascara – if you recall, I had found Australia had a MAC one and I’d toddled off to purchase but was persuaded at the last minute to try another, the SA promising a smudge free wear. To be fair, she was entirely truthful in that it has never smudged despite numerous trips to the gym and sweating like I’d invented it. But it took a purchase (via ebay) of *actual* tubing mascara to truly understand and appreciate the tubing phenomenon.

Heinemann Duty Free

I bought L’Oreal’s Double Extend Beauty Tubes Mascara (sometimes Double Extension Beauty Tubes) – NOT to be confused with Double Extension Renewal Lash Serum. Yes, helpfully, they have several of very similarly named mascaras – but basically, you want the maroon coloured one actually called Beauty Tubes. You start with the white end which extends (clue in the name) then switch to the black which tubes around the lash. And it wears very well and also doesn’t smudge. I’ve really enjoyed using this, not least because it is as promised, very easy to remove with regular facial cleanser/warm water. The only slightly perturbing moments are the appearance of what looks like small spider legs on your flannel, but it’s a small hurdle for simple, painless, smudge free mascara removal. Keep an eye out for it in Duty Free/ebay/overseas. I’ve never found it in Australia, sadly.

Until next time; may your lashes be smudge free.
AF XXOX

Eiderantler EdP by John Biebel forJanuary Scent Project 2017

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Erica Golding

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Hi all, I hope you are enjoying a gorgeously fragrant day wherever you are!

Me, I’m having a woodland faerie princess kind of day. My friend John graced me with a sneak preview of his upcoming releases for January Scent Project, and one in particular has cast a spell on me:

Eiderantler EdP by January Scent Project 2017

Eiderantler EdP by John Biebel

January Scent Project

January Scent Project‘s notes:
Lavender, green leaves, moss, pink pepper, lavandin, champa leaf, ivy, elemi, fir cone, hay, oak wood, cashmere, vetiver, musk

Eiderantler is summarized as an “ivy fougere,” and even the hue of the liquid is fern green. I have been on a real fougere kick lately. When I spritzed this on a test strip, I was immediately captivated and intrigued. Onto my skin it went!

The opening of Eiderantler glitters with pink pepper and a particularly green-toned lavender. The grassy and herbal notes glow brilliantly, but they are elegantly tempered by the velvety moss and hay. The composition is fresh yet rounded, conjuring emotions of peaceful optimism.

January Scent Project

The end stages drift gently like morning fog, and I particularly notice the softness of the cashmere, champa, and musk.

It’s quite evident that Eiderantler is heavy on the naturals because of the stunning sincerity it evokes. It achieves an air of simplicity overall, but reveals complex choreography as the stages evolve on the skin. I’ve never smelled anything that compares to this scent. I think that many fragrances out there aim for this effect, but Eiderantler is totally unique and fascinatingly balanced. To me, this is what an elf from the Tolkien universe would smell like!

January Scent Project doesn’t have it quite ready for sale yet but SOON

Does perfume ever send you into a fantasy land? What’s the latest scent you tried that transported you instantly?

Much love until next time,
Erica

Scent Samples: Love & Loss

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TinaG

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Hi APJ,

My fragrance collection had a bit of a rough ride last year. I packed up my house & put everything in storage in May while I travelled overseas for 7 weeks, and then it stayed in storage while I found another place to live. It wasn’t until September 2016 when I got access to everything again. The full bottles and decants were fine, but there was substantial loss from my samples. This varied from leakage & evaporation, to label text disappearing.

Scent Samples: Love & Loss

Moral number one of this is: samples are intended to be used. They aren’t there for you to build a mini-Osmothèque style fragrance library, the vials aren’t that robust at the best of times. Use them, make notes, talk about them, and if you fall in love… buy the bottle.

So, I’ve sorted my samples, laid them out, & thrown out the empties. The ones which have leaked but still have juice left in the vial have been put aside for testing. So today I grabbed two as I walked out the door to give them a run through. These are Fueguia 1833 – Don Giovanni, and Castillos.

And – do you know what? I looked up Fueguia 1833’s current catalogue, and these two aren’t listed. Some time back I purchased full sample sets of Destinos and Special Projects, of which Castillos and Don Giovanni and were included as at March 2016. Now in March 2017, a year later, they’re no longer available – which leads us to moral number two: things change. What was available 6 months or 12 months ago, may be discontinued and therefore so much more difficult to access. And if you fall in love, you’re screwed.

So what do I do with these two samples? Do I treasure them,put them in tightly packed glass vials or on the shelf? I think we need to go back to moral number one: samples are intended to be used.

Here’s what I think of both:

Fragrantica

Castillos – Destinos collection

Notes: Tuberose, Jasmine, Mate.
This is weird. The mate isn’t dried powdered green tea, it’s fresh and floral and slightly rotten, with the tuberose and jasmine rounding out the overall indole. It is old flowers in a jungle – damp, wet and lush but with that meaty heaviness which you can find in tropical plants. Would I wear it again? Maybe. It’s dried down to have a woody background note and what I think is a touch of ylang ylang.

Fragrantica

Don Giovanni – Special Projects collection.

Notes: Tuberose, Civet, Jasmine
Interesting that I’ve picked up another fragrance with tuberose and jasmine in it today, and once again they are pretty sexy and indolic. The civet seems to me to be refined, its funky but without being feral and I think there’s a lemon note in there smoothing things over. Think: a woman who’s been with her lover all day, but has freshened up and got dressed to go out to a movie premier. She’s looking elegant but still has a slinkiness & smell of dangerous liaisons about her. Rawwwwrrrrr.

Have you ever mourned the loss of any fragrances from your collection?

Have a wonderful week!

Tina G xx

Sensual Orchid by Jerome Epinette for LM Parfums 2012

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Tara: A Bottled Rose

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Hi APJ,

Creamy petals in the breeze…

Whenever I’ve encountered LM Parfums online, the brand has come across as rather sleek and sexy. It also has some intriguing English fragrance names such as Army of Lovers, along with de rigueur French ones.

LM Parfums is a New York based niche line launched in 2010 by fashion designer Laurent Mazzone, after first releasing a collection of scented candles. Sensual Orchid is a floral oriental launched in 2012 composed by Jerome Epinette who has done a number of fragrances for Atelier Cologne and Byredo.

Sensual Orchid by LM Parfums 2012

Sensual Orchid by Jerome Epinette

Fragrantica

Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Top: Mandarin, Almond, Neroli
Heart: Heliotrope, Jasmine sambac, Orchid, Peony, Ylang-ylang
Base: Benzoin, Blond woods, Labdanum, Musk, Vanilla, White cedar

From the name and my impression of the brand, I expected Sensual Orchid to be a nocturnal, narcotic scent. Therefore the fresh opening was a surprise; comprising sweet, juicy mandarin and a dash of booze which together create a cocktail effect.

Almond is a nemesis note of mine but here, combined with orange, it doesn’t trigger an adverse reaction and I may not have even identified it if I hadn’t read it in the notes. The almond and heliotrope merely round out the fruit (and later the florals) giving the composition a gourmand twist.

The luscious fruit continues into the body of the fragrance which is made up of creamy, velvety white florals, mostly ylang-ylang. The finish is plush and the whole composition feels top quality. Sensual Orchid is labeled Extrait de Parfum and the lasting power is extremely good, coupled with noticeable presence.

The style of Sensual Orchid is the vein of the gorgeous Pichola by Neela Vermeire Creations. Both have an exotic feel but are billowy and citrusy.

Flickr

The mood is tropical-lite, starting off with a gentle ocean breeze and blue skies, getting a little duskier over time but never quite hits sultry on me. While I get that vacation vibe it’s not a trashy beach scent in the slightest. It keeps it classy throughout. You will feel like you’re lounging in hotter climes but you won’t have people in the city wondering who’s wearing Hawaiian Tropic sun cream.

As attractive as it is,Sensual Orchid feels too laid back for me to imagine its scent coming from the striking orchid flower. Those blooms are seductive attention grabbers while remaining rarefied and delicate. I wanted the fragrance to be darker, sexier and more mysterious but it is well done, if a tad too sweet for my taste. It’s overtly feminine and entirely wearable.

WikiCommons

Further reading: APJ and Scented Hound
LuckyScent has $220/100ml + Samples

It’s not setting my world aflame but then white florals are rarely my thing. I can imagine it working well for those who like a sweet, rich, hothouse floral with substance.

Have you tried this or anything else from LM Parfums? I’d be particularly interested if you know Hard Leather or Army of Lovers.

Tara xx

 

(Ed: We are so lucky to have Tara drop in today from A Bottled Rose. Do go have a look at her blog. You’ll love it. Thanks buddy!)

Annick Goutal Discontinuations

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Anne-Marie

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Hi all,
Since I heard that Annick Goutal is to be re-branded early next year, I’ve been carefully ticking off certain of its older offerings from my ‘to-try’ list. If, as has been reported, the line will be cut from around 45 fragrances to 25, at least some of the great classics are surely headed for the chop.

Annick Goutal Discontinuations

A wander through the Goutal catalogue

Fragrantica

I tried and loved Eau du Sud at the airport on my way home from holidays in January. Unfortunately my excitement did not outlast the post-holiday glow. I bought a decant so as to give Sud a thorough test but, lovely though it is, I’ve found it collapses on skin in hot weather. As it is a summer scent, that’s a disappointment. I still like it, but I’m not going for a full bottle when there are plenty of other Goutals jostling for the attentions of my credit card.

One of those jostlers is Sables (immortelle, cinnamon, pepper, tea, sandalwood, amber). Now this one really could be on the endangered list. Already it seems to be in limited distribution because it’s hard to find and never cheap. You have to have a deep and abiding commitment to the curry-and-burnt-sugar effect of immortelle (or helichrysum) to enjoy Sables. The other notes are bit players, although a lot of people smell cinnamon distinctly (I don’t). Sables is absolutely outstanding but it would take me at least 147 years to get through a FB. A single spritz lasts all day and can survive a shower the next morning. A large decant may be all I’ll ever need.

Then there is Passion (tuberose, tomato leaf, jasmine, ylang, vanilla, oakmoss, patchouli). This is one of the early releases (1983) and it does reference some of the great florals and chypres of yore. Tropical notes are balanced by the green twang of tomato leaf and a mossy base. Overall, Passion has (for me) a slightly tailored, formal feel to it. It’s perfect for professional settings, being neither too stuffy nor too cosy and casual. FB-worthy, yes, and much cheaper than Sables.

Fragrantica

Gardenia Passion (gardenia, jasmine, tuberose, orange blossom, vanilla). This should be named ‘tuberose passion’ really, but it is no less beautiful for that. The opening is so dramatic I gasped aloud. A white floral accord so buttery and so green it stole away the very breath I was trying to use to smell it. Then – it’s gone. Gardenia Passion leaves my skin, and the building, in under an hour. So, this one is off the list.

The last in my little clutch of Goutal samples is Grand Amour. . I think this may be a scrubber. The problem is the hyacinth, which normally I like but here it seems too cutting for my taste. But I’ve only tried Grand Armour on skin once, so who knows. It might improve.

Annick Goutal

So – over to you. Do you have great loves from the house of Goutal? Are you doing what I’m doing – snatching at them before they go?
Bye for now everyone!
Anne-Marie

Cuir Mauresque by Christopher Sheldrake for Serge Lutens 1996

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Val the Cookie Queen

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Hey APJ!

Cuir Mauresque is an odd creature. I have a bell jar of the stuff and have worn it a lot. Which should indicate that I like it.
Although it always smells the same when I sniff it in the bottle, it is an absolute risk putting it on as I have no idea as to whether
I am going to enjoy the experience or not. Hours of pleasure or hours of pain?

Cuir Mauresque by Serge Lutens 1996

Cuir Mauresque by Christopher Sheldrake

Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Amber, incense, cinnamon, cedar, jasmine, civet, nutmeg, cumin, musk, mandarin peel, orange blossom, sweet spices

Like a number of Lutens, it is a casserole of components. Perhaps the order of these materials are forever swirling in the bottle?

Like most of us I have perfumes that I have to be in the mood for, and perfumes that only I might only want to wear once a year. That
would include Vero Profumo`s Onda EdP and a recently acquired vintage Mitsouko. But I enjoy both of them and know what I am going to get when I wear them.

Cuir Mauresque on a good day is sumptuous and warm. Spicy, golden, a supple leather. Stylish, rich and fragrant, comforting, balsamic, seductive, and classy. It opens with a floral burst of jasmine and orange blossom, resting on top of the darker and more spicy ingredients. I love this version all day and all night! It is agreeable and slouchy, relaxed and comfortable.

PDI

However Cuir Mauresque on a bad day is a whole different kettle of fish. We are talking an artificial fruity shoe polish opening, or perhaps furniture polish, powdery and cloying, old wet leather, and an underlying feeling that you´ve spilled a bottle of cough syrup over yourself. The kind that sticks to everything. Perhaps a dab of floor polish? It remains sickly sweet and very waxy. There is a a continuous leather note, running through the whole composition, but it´s the recently deceased cow vibe. Hmmmmm.

Nevertheless, I wouldn´t want to be without Cuir Mauresque. I love it.

Val XX

Further reading: WMSSL and Scented Hound
Surrender To Chance has samples from $3.50/0.5ml has

WTF? I wonder what causes this extreme difference in what I experience. Any of you know what I mean?

Welcome to the Twilight Zone.

Bountiful Bussis
CQ

Sunshine: Skin & Body Care

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AF Beauty

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Hey APJ Crew – how are you all?

It’s been a while I know, I took a little longer in the shower than I’d originally planned! #dallas #bobbyewing

Sunshine: Skin & Body Care

Actually, while I’ve been away, I’ve been in the bath more than the shower – I’ve been working out at the gym after work, so I drag my beaten self back home and throw myself in the bath. I have fallen in love with the bath again, it has been bliss – and something I’ve really missed when travelling and not having a bath available. But you know what I’ve noticed, Australia has a really pathetic range of cheap and cheerful bath products – either I have to use shower gel or radox crystals.

Amazing Oils

In fact, I am mostly using magnesium based crystals – not for beauty reasons, but for muscle recovery. I have been using an Australian brand of magnesium, similar, but not the same as Epsom Salts – this one is from a company called Amazing Oils and specifically for recovery. And though I say this isn’t a beauty product, magnesium REALLY helps me sleep, so if beauty sleep is a thing, then these crystals make me beautiful!

The other thing that’s happened while I’ve been away – SUMMER! Yessss! The sun has been shining, it’s been hot! The sun has been enjoyable but first things first – the sun does dry the face and you will get wrinkles – or at least, *I’m* getting wrinkles – if you don’t take care of your skin. Second things, wearing makeup all changes when your skin is a fraction darker than it was two months ago.

Garnier

Skincare first: The difference in skin is hard to pinpoint, it just seems less plump and drier – while greasier. As usual, if there are obnoxious skin combinations to be had, here they are. I have resorted to old favourites to continue to treat my skin and have bumped up the night-time treatment. I should have added a regular daytime SPF but I still search for the elusive sun protection that isn’t heavy, greasy, claggy, or just disruptive to usual make up. I’ve worn tinted moisturiser with SPF – it has been my saviour. Nothing fancy, I think I’ve written about it before – Garnier’s BB Cream in Anti-Ageing and medium. It’s been a summer saviour helping me resist marching into Myer and buying a new foundation. The good (or bad) thing about a tan is it’ll wash away quicker than it ever took to acquire.

I have tried Nivea Face Veil (OK, but a bit greasy), Jurlique SPF Lotion (really nice texture but caused my foundation to pill). And I’m sure I’ve got others, but I’ve also got a bit of a skincare addiction, so they’re probably underneath a load of other things, whoops! To add to that I noticed as I researched this that Jurlique has some new sun protection products that’ve caught my eye (See? Addicted!) so I’m going to see if they’ll give me some testers.
Until next time, I’m off to the bath…..

AF Beauty XXXX