Review: Japonesque Precision Lash Curler

I bought this about 3 months ago and I’ve tried it on false lashes AND natural lashes, with and without Revitalash on my eyes, and I’ve had to draw the difficult conclusion that this product is not fit for purpose.

I have large, 3D eyes with a double layer of thick lashes, like Elizabeth Taylor, and, since I’ve been an adult, normal lash curlers don’t have the right shape/size to do my lashes very well (I used to find them easy to use as a child… I’ve been using eyelash curlers since age 11). I usually blast my eyelash curlers with my hairdryer for 2-5 seconds (it’s VERY easy to burn your eyelids if you do this) to get them to stay curled for more than 10 minutes.

I have the Shu Uemura eyelash curlers, which are brilliant, so when I heard the Japonesque ones were a good dupe, I bought the smaller precision ones as I wanted those from Shu Uemura and had bought the wider ones, instead (I tried both at the Shu Uemura counter).

From the moment I tried them, I’ve not managed to get even a slight curl on my eyelashes with these Japonesque ones. I tried them on false lashes and nothing happened there, either. Even the £1 eyelash curlers from the bargain bucket manage to get my eyelashes to curl a little. These cost $11 (or £10 on UK Amazon) and they’re hopeless.

I 100% DO NOT RECOMMEND these eyelash curlers. For the price, you would be much better spending a bit more and getting the Shu Uemura ones which I’ve reviewed here, because when you spend more than $3 on an eyelash curler, you expect to get something that actually works.

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Getting back on the horse

I took a longer break than I wanted. It’s taken me a couple of weeks to process recent events, and I needed to re-engage with the wider world before I came back to my blog.

I am going to pre-schedule a series of posts, one a week, covering reviews of stuff I’ve tried lately because I’ve been taking photos religiously but I couldn’t face writing articles about them. There’s been a few reasons for that but I don’t want to go into great detail, except to say I’m being harassed by someone who knows me personally and every time I post anything on here, they contact me privately to tear me to pieces. I don’t want to change my private contact details as it’s the only contact information some of my family have.

This harassment is one of the reasons I’m not telling you all which country I’m emigrating to, and it’s also the main reason I haven’t shared any of my bestselling romance or erotica books with you all. Hopefully, once I’ve gotten back into the habit of writing regular posts it’ll get easier again. Otherwise, I’m going to have to seriously consider the future of this blog because I can’t keep self-censoring in fear of retribution from someone.

I’m pretty sure there’ll be a backlash from the person in question because I’ve written this. Honestly, I think some people have far too much time on their hands.

 

I’m all right, too.

I didn’t make this meme, so you’ll have to put up with the grammatical issues, but other than that, it pretty much sums up the last two weeks for me.

 

Catherine Tate Doctor Who Im Alright

I am going to try and get some reviews done for the coming week, but this past week was mostly taken up by being away getting data for my MSc dissertation, and to be honest, with everything going on in my country recently, I don’t really feel like writing about beauty products or travel (which is a shame as I have some great articles planned for the coming month). I’ll try and write something tomorrow though.

My thoughts are with everyone affected by what has happened in Manchester and London.

And, I’m a bit pissed off with Facebook that they only activate their “mark yourself as ‘safe'” app when London gets hit. It should have been used for Manchester, as well, where it would have been more useful for all the parents trying to find their children. But that pretty much sums up the north/south divide. Sorry, if I seem a little disillusioned and angry it’s because I am. And that’s not a good place to write about travel and beauty. I will try my best to get a new post out before the General Election on Thursday.

Review: Chanel Nail Varnish in Ballerina

So, I spent all week stressing about not having enough money, then I decided to make myself feel better… by spending money. So now I’m the owner of a bottle of Chanel Longwear Nail Colour in shade 167 Ballerina. I wanted some China Glaze but I couldn’t find any in TK Maxx so I went to the Chanel counter at John Lewis and bought this instead. I have never had high-end nail polish before, but I bought it because I read this article where they said it’s one of the best (along with China Glaze, Essie and Opi) for not chipping. I’ve had the same nail varnish for about 2 years as I liked the color, but it chipped SO BAD that it looked like it had been on a week after a day, which is why I thought I’d go for the best this time.

This is not only my first high-end nail varnish, it’s also my first Chanel product, and the very first time I’d ever been to the Chanel counter.

The Chanel counter assistant swatched Ballerina for me on a piece of clear plastic sticky tape on the back of my hand, alongside Organdi, because I couldn’t decide between the two colors from looking at the bottles. Organdi is a neutral nude in a generally flattering shade, whereas Ballerina looked almost white when swatched. I bought it and they wrapped it in a piece of paper scented with Chanel No. 5 then put it in a bag that was fastened with a piece of ribbon that says Chanel along it. Two days later the perfume is still making me smile (I love Chanel No. 5; if there was a room spray I’d totally get it, but the perfume never mixes well with my skin, and it produces a weird scent, so I can’t wear it despite how much I love the smell in general).

As soon as I got home I put it on my fingers and it took AGES to dry because I kept moving and smudging it. Also, I’d been doing the layers too thinly (because my old nail varnish was a one-and-done kinda nail varnish). Ballerina is really sheer and needs 2-3 thick layers, so I ended up with 5 thin layers on one hand and 4 medium ones on the other, and I still managed to smudge it again on one finger!! It was only a little smudge so I decided to do nothing about it.

It came out a really pale pink and I love the color.

Two days after I put it on (and bear in mind I’ve done SO much housework and cleaning and reorganizing which is usually certain death for nail varnish) it’s still got no chips at all and it’s still super shiny!

Chanel longwear nail colour 167 Ballerina review
You can’t tell that this is 2 days later!!

Conclusion: This is the best nail varnish I ever got! Five out of five for longevity! Usually when things say “longwear” it’s code for “sub-standard and never comes off” but in this case, it really, truly does what it’s supposed to! I’m thinking about getting another one when I next get paid, in a darker color. Obviously I can’t say that it’s the best high end nail varnish because it’s the only one I’ve tried, but I still completely love it and think it was worth £20 just for the fact I feel more confident wearing nail varnish now that I can touch things without chipping it! I’m definitely going to get some China Glaze as soon as I can find it so I can do a comparison review.

Review: Tony Moly I’m Real Sheet Mask: Red Wine

You have to hand it to K-beauty, they really know how to come up with the most random ingredients to put into products! Like this Tony Moly I’m Real Sheet Mask in Red Wine, which apparently is supposed to help refine pores.
This is what it looks like:

Tony Moly red wine mask sheet for pore care.
Tony Moly red wine mask sheet for pore care.

And this is what the back of the pack looks like, with the ingredients and some pictures showing you how to use it:

Tony Moly red wine mask sheet ingredients for pore care
Ze Ingredients.

So at this point I was wondering whether, inside, the sheet mask was going to be drenched in red wine (because I’m literal, apparently) but they hadn’t soaked a sheet in actual red wine, it was the usual white papery stuff that all sheet masks ever are made of (except for those ones that are more like jelly). I was a little disappointed, and part of me was wondering how much actual red wine it could have if it wasn’t even a little pink:

Tony Moly red wine mask sheet for pore care
I didn’t expect this color.

Maybe the ingredients in K-beauty are like totem ingredients. You know… “This is red wine sheet mask… it will refine your pores, like red wine!!” rather than actually having those ingredients in. I guess we do that with western beauty too — I know for a fact that 70% of the Herbal Essences shampoos don’t actually contain herbs any more. This makes me sad. 😦
Anyway, I decided not to think much on what was in this face mask, I bunged it on my face and ignored it for 20-30 minutes, just like the packet told me to:

Tony Moly red wine mask sheet for pore care
I am wearing a piece of paper soaked in cold stuff. If I smile, the piece above my lip hits my teeth. That made it really hard not to giggle while taking this picture.

I was trying so hard to be serious and not giggle that this just popped out:

tony moly red wine mask
Literally couldn’t help myself.

When I took it off, my face looked… pretty much how it did before I put it on:

Tony Moly red wine mask sheet for pore care: before and after
No visible difference. My skin felt really smooth, though.

I have another one to try out, too, so while this red wine one wasn’t for me, I’m looking forward to trying this rice one:

tony moly red wine rice mask sheet
Red wine and rice flavor masks. I haven’t tried putting them in my mouth to establish if they actually taste like these things.

An Impossible Visa Choice

So, my husband got offered a job in Asia which is well paid, stable, and dependable, in a country I didn’t 150% want to go to (hence I won’t name and shame) but overall it sounded like a good opportunity, and I can go over on a spouse visa. The downside? I will have no job when I get there and, because of the specific country, limited employment options. Until this evening, it was still looking like a good choice because I can continue writing my books from anywhere in the world, although this country’s internet is intermittent and heavily censored.

Then, last night, I got an email telling me I’ve been selected to apply for my Canadian 2-year visa (you apply to a pool of candidates for the Working Holiday Visa, then if they pick you, you apply for the actual visa and get it straight away). BUT I have to apply for it within the next 8 days, or I don’t get it. BUT I have to get a police certificate to apply for this visa, and it takes 10 days to get the normal one, or 2 days (for twice the cost), not to mention all the other requirements for this visa, so I have to move fast. If it had come through in July-October, it would maybe be useful, but you can’t be self-employed on this visa, so I would basically have to stop writing and blogging for 2 years. And be away from my husband that whole time. And figure out how to support myself when I’ve basically been paying my way with my writing and blogging for a while. But, it’s Canada! If this had happened 7 years ago I would have been so excited and gone to do it straight away but now? After everything that’s happened the past few years, and with the option of being able to stay with my husband if I go to this other country? I just don’t know. Part of me thinks that if I want to go to Canada, I should just go on a tourist visa instead, now, or do the proper immigration thing, because 2 years of living in Canada but being unable to write… will that help me move to Canada as a writer in the future? I don’t know, it might.  It depends if they value CANADA experience at higher than WRITING experience for the writing immigration application. Oh, and I’d have to lose 3 months of my visa or quit my Master’s degree as it doesn’t finish until August. But, it’s Canada!!!

ARRRRRGH!!!

Nature Love Sea Algae Eye masks

I discovered that Home Sense also does beauty products this week. Like, they have similar stuff to TK Maxx (because they’re basically the same shop, only Home Sense does housewares and TK Maxx does fashion… even their price tags are designed the same). So, when I discovered their stunning range of Korean sheet masks (which kinda aren’t on a discount) I decided to try some, especially since I need to figure out where I’m at with K-beauty before I move to Asia in August.

As you all know, I suffer from blue under-eye circles (which are actually sometimes purple circles) due to allergies and find myself constantly working hard to get rid of my blue circles, so under-eye masks are something I’m always willing to try when I see them for sale.

It’s cheaper to get the Tony Moly ones from Amazon… BUT only if you want 10 face masks, which comes to about £10. If you want 1 face mask… yeah Amazon doesn’t do that. So while they were £1.99 per face mask at Home Sense (twice the price of Amazon), I still thought it was worth it to try out some of these masks (more on Tony Moly in a future post). The ones I tried out today were eye masks that were £3.99 for a pack of 5 pairs, and are by an obscure Korean brand called Nature Love, who aren’t on Amazon but if you see them for sale anywhere, they seemed pretty nice.

nature love sea algae eye masks review
Nature Love Sea Algae Eye Masks

Today I’m going to talk about the sea algae eye masks that I bought. They came in a pack of 3 and I hoped they’d be super hydrating and moisturizing for my normal-to-dry skin.
I put them on for, like, half an hour (it said 10-20 mins but you’re not supposed to wash the stuff off after so I thought it would be fine). One issue I had with them was that they kept sliding down my face. I don’t normally have this problem with eye masks (I quite like the Montagne Jeunesse re-usable ones, which currently live in my fridge), so that was surprising.

nature love sea algae eye masks review

nature sea algae eye masks review before after

After I took them off, as you can see, the area that had eye mask on was… whitened? I’d been out in the sun that day so the contrast is quite obvious; all my face was the same color before I used these eye masks. I’m not sure it’s a useful effect for my skin, given that I’m already fairly pale. What I wanted was for the indentations around my under-eyes to be less obvious. However, the skin tone certainly seemed firmer and blue circles were somewhat reduced. How long that will last is anybody’s guess.

Have you got a go-to under eye mask? I can never decide if they’re worth using, or if I should use them more regularly than once in a blue moon to get some better results, but they don’t take up much space so I don’t mind buying them occasionally.

Stay tuned next time for a review of the Tony Moly I’m Real Face Masks! This means I can’t forget to use them before I next write a blog post (I have a bad habit of buying face masks and forgetting about them).