Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Saturday with SLA

Last weekend I attended a bloggers event “A Saturday with SLA” at the boutique SLA Makeup Studio in the gorgeous inner Sydney suburb of Balmain.

SLA is a range of professional, natural and organic makeup created by the French make-up artist Serge Louis Alvarez which is produced, manufactured and distributed from the South of France – Ooh La La.  

The SLA Makeup Studio in Sydney is an Australian first, opening in 2009. Its home to an amazing array of SLA products which are available in a large variety of shades and colours and are richly pigmented as most of SLA’s products are of 55-60% pure pigmentation (anything over 60% is permanent) and claim to have great staying power.

After negotiating the city traffic I arrived at the event just in time for the makeup demonstration of the new Sunlight Collection set to be released for Spring/Summer 2011. I fell in love with this collection which screams summer with its mixture of blues, greens and a gorgeous vibrant orange which was demonstrated on fellow blogger Amy from The Makeup Case and made her blue eyes pop! Not a colour I would normally reach for but thanks to SLA I’m loving orange for summer.
I also loved the lip gloss duo palettes which can be worn separately or together to emphasize and create a fuller lip by outlining the lips in the darker shade and filling in with the lighter shade.

Sunlight Collection
The gorgeous shadows of the Sunlight Collection

Amy from The Makeup Case and her look using the Sunlight Collection

SLA have an amazing selection of professional and organic eye shadows that can be purchased in a pre packaged palettes or on their on. For the adventurous beauty, SLA also stock a funky range of chunky glitter pigments and shadows to create a glamorous stage look and I was also drawn toward the beautiful mother of pearl shimmering pigments which are made from crushed mother of pearl – very beautiful.

As I’m going through a lipstick obsession, I couldn’t leave the studio without purchasing a lipstick of my very own. I purchased number 11 from the Rich Bio Lipstick range which is created from all natural ingredients and is dusty pink rose colour - so far so good.

Swatch: Rich Bio Lipstick #11

To end the day, the lovely girls from SLA provided us bloggers a gift bag which included a bronze Pulpy Gloss lip gloss (also from the Bio Organic range), a SLA French manicure kit and two pairs Lummiere Eyelashes – so a huge thank you to Hannah and Nicole from SLA :)

For stockist information visit the Serge Louis Alvarez Website.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Hello Shellac

Gel nail polishes are taking nail bars and salons by storm and quickly becoming the nail polish of choice for those with weak nails or nails that seem to chip no matter what brand of top coat is used.
I first heard about CND Shellac (as featured in my post here) and  have been wanting them every since. So as I was jet setting off on a holiday I thought there was no better time than to treat myself with my first Shellac’ing.
Shellac boasts 14 day wear with no nicks, chips or smudges, a mirror finish that lasts and ZERO drying time – which I still couldn’t get over as I was digging into my bag to pay after the application.
The Shellac process involves a base coat, two polish coats and a top coat which feature UV3 technology and is cured under a special UV lamp after each application. The range includes 24 shades and the shade I chose was Iced Cappuccino which was the perfect colour of bronze and champagne.  

                     Shellac Day 2
Shellac - Day 6

Shellac Day 14

So what do I think?
·     Shellac lived up to my expectation of 14 day wear with no nicks, chips or smudges, a mirror finish that lasts and ZERO drying time. I reached day 17 before removal and apart from my nail regrowth and tiny wear on the tips of some nails, the Shellac maintained it original condition and shine.
·     I have to re mention the zero drying time as it was something I just couldn’t get over. Gone are the days of paying before you paint, waiting minutes for the polish to dry and then nicking your nails as soon as you get to your car. Once you have your last two minutes under the UV lamp the Shellac is set – rock hard.
·     The added strength. I have a love and hate relationship with my nails, without fail they reach a certain length and break and at least once per month one nail decides to split on the sides causing pain. The Shellac acts as a nail hardener and I have never seen such lengths and unlike acrylic nails it does not ruin the nail once removed.
·    So convenient and saved me so much time as I would of been painting and removing an endless amount of time throughout the two weeks.

·     It really does last 14 days – So all you nail polish lovers out there who love to change their nails every other day, this may be a problem for you.
·     Choose your manicurist wisely – while my nails looked great and I loved the colour, up close (and in the photographs) I did notice some streaking and slight imperfections.
·     It’s recommended that you see your manicurist for removal – such a pain I know, but Shellac have special removal wraps which only take a few minutes soaking time.
·     Can be a little pricey. As Shellac is becoming quite popular the price of application can be quite high and I have seen price ranges from $25-$40(AUD).

Overall I loved my first Shellac experience and will be getting my nails re-shellac’d in the near future.
Have you tried Shellac? What were your thoughts on this hybrid polish?

Don’t forget, for your chance to win a Scunci Hair Accessories pack, enter my giveaway here.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Scunci Hair Accessories and GIVEAWAY - CLOSED

Are hair accessories like gold in your house? Do you also have a bobby pin gremlin who hides all your bobby pins? Argh, I do!! So when I was approached by the lovely people from Polkadot PR to try and review the Scunci Hair Accessory range I was more than willing.

In my pack, I received from the no-slip and no damage range a generous amount of bobby pins, hair bands and a split head band which I have been wanting for a while to re create the gorgeous updo as seen on Katherine Heigal. Please keep reading as Polkadot PR is also offering one lucky subscriber the chance to win a Scunci pack of their very own.

Katherine Heigal

The range of hair bands (or hair ties) are available to suit all hair types and all come with no metal parts that can pull or damage hair. My personal favourites are the standard black ties (which as daggy as it’s sounds you may often find me wearing on my wrist like the latest fashion accessory – for just in case purposes), these come in a pack of 32 offering various thicknesses.

I also love the beautiful blends range which are various tones of browns to highlight and complement brunette beauties and for those with extra thick hair or for those who wish to add height to their ponytail (Genie style), the knit ponywraps are for you. They are soft and generous in size allowing you to wrap around any hair thickness to secure.

Scunci bobby pins come in a wide variety of colours including light golden browns, turtle shell, black and even silver to add a little bling to an updo. I was most impressed with the quality as in the past I have purchased cheap supermarket brands which were poor quality and broke easily. These bobby pins have a rubbery feel which along with the inner grooves allow the pins (and hair) to stay securely in place all day.  

Headbands add flare to any boring hairstyle however I always find that thin metal or hard plastic ones cause me so much pain as the metal (or plastic) ends often dig into the sensitive areas behind the ears. The Scunci no-slip grip band is a bendable gel-like plastic with bendy combs which allow the band to stay in place all day and with added cushion tips there is no pain!  

Now onto the GIVEAWAY

The Prize:

A Scunci Accessory Pack provided by Polkadot PR which includes:
Scunci Knit Pony Wraps RRP: $4.95(AUD)
Scunci No Damage Thin Hair Elastics RRP: $7.95(AUD)
Scunci No Slip Grip Split Band with Cushion Tips RRP: $8.95(AUD)
Scunci Grooming Compact Mirror RRP: $4.95(AUD)

How to win:

1.      Be a follower of Beauty Soiree via Google Friend Connect (GFC)
2.      Comment below listing your GFC name and email address or twitter name (some way I can contact you if you are the winner).
3.      Winner will be chosen at random via random.org
4.      Only one entry per person please.


1.      This giveaway is open to all followers of Beauty Soiree internationally.
2.      This giveaway will be open from the date of post and close midnight (AEST) on 9 September 2011.
3.      This giveaway is held of behalf of Polkadot PR who will also forward the winner their prize pack.

Good luck xx

Scunci have a vast array of different hair accessories to suite all hair colours, types and thicknesses. After browsing their website I realised I have not made a dent in mentioning their entire product range so I suggest you visit their website to have a sneaky peek.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Holiday Beauty Essentials

So I have just returned from the gorgeous Hamilton Island and like many of you (I’m sure) I packed way to many cosmetics for my week’s trip. So now I am home and slowly unpacking I thought I’d share with you some of my most used holiday beauty essentials.

NYX Lipstick in Fig

This gorgeous pink lippie took me from beach to bar in one application. I love the vibrant colour and creamy texture.

Dove Summer Glow

This gradual self tanning moisturising lotion was a life saver, I used it everyday to prolong my spray tan which luckily enough, last the full week.  

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Sunscreen Spray

I love the idea of a spray on sunscreen but the ones I have tried in the past have sprayed out in cream form which requires you to rub it in anyway but I love the Ultra Sheer by Neutrogena as it sprays on clear, dries nicely and is non sticky and has a nice clean scent. So quick and easy to give yourself a quick spray before you head out for the day – only downside is that it’s only SPF 15.  

NARS Bronzer in Laguna

I think I wore this everyday; it was the perfect bronze for my spray tanned skin and its light and non shimmery – LOVE

Clinique Colour Surge Eye Shadow Trio
Containing a lilac shimmer (Blackberry frost), matte plum (night plum) and a matte dark brown (slate) this palette made it super simple to recreate the base, contour and defined eye look without thinking – so perfect when on holiday. I received this palette just before I left as a GWP during Clinique’s Gift Time and I love how the lilac really opens your eyes.

Batiste Dry Shampoo in Diva

Dry Shampoo always comes in handy to give the brow dry a quick refresh in between washes. I have used other dry shampoo brands in the past but I was really happy with the results from Bastiste, after a quick spray my hair looked freshly washed and the product smells amazing too.

So what are your holiday beauty essentials? Am I right in saying that you also pack way to much when going on holiday or vacation?

Holiday Snaps

Hi Beauties,

Sorry I have been MIA but I have now returned ready for some serious blogging ;)

I have recently come back from a relaxing week on Queensland’s Hamilton Island which is situated near the stunning Great Barrier Reef.

It is such a beautiful part of the world and I so enjoyed soaking in the warm sun, eating like royalty and tuning out from my sometimes stressful city life.

I couldn’t wait to get stuck into blogging again so to kick things off I thought I would share some holiday snaps (and to add some sunshine to any of my Sydney readers on this miserable day).  

Enjoy xx

Our room's view (not too bad ay?)

The view of Catseye Beach from One Tree Hill

Hamilton Island's preferred mode of transport - The Buggy

The spectacular Whitehaven Beach

Greeting from the fuzzy locals

Chillaxing at Reefworld on the Great Barrier Reef
Awesome snorkeling at Hardy Reef (The GBR)

Cheers x