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We Swear By This Product For Banishing Dull Skin
Joanna Fleming

It’s not just our in-house makeup artist @vanessawalshartistry that keeps multiple tubes of this stuff in her kit at all times. It’s pretty much a staple for every makeup artist if they want to meet the glowy skin brief.

MAC’s Strobe Cream gives dull, tired-looking complexions an instant boost of radiance, and it’s pretty versatile as well.

 

Tell Me More:

– This brightening & hydrating balm adds a soft radiant glow to the skin

– Strobe Cream smooths the appearance of the skin while improving clarity

– It’s infused with antioxidants, botanicals & nutrient-rich vitamins

– Contains ultra-fine iridescent particles to add a natural-looking glow to the skin

– It’s available in four shades & is suitable for all skin types

Buy here

 

What’s In It?

Part makeup, part skincare. Strobe Cream contains antioxidant Green Tea to protect the skin from environmental damage, Jojoba Oil to brighten and hydrate dull complexions, and Mulberry Root Extract to improve the appearance of uneven skin tone.

How To Use It:

Strobe Cream can be used pre-foundation in place of a primer, mixed with your liquid or cream foundation for dewy radiance, or as a face and body highlighter.

I personally wear light coverage foundations and tinted moisturisers, so I like to mix Strobe Cream with my moisturiser as I prep my skin (can never have enough hydration), before I apply everything else.

 

The Reviews:

★★★★★ Love a dewy base  Rose

“I love to use this under my foundation to give a subtle glow – I love a dewy makeup look and this works so well to achieve that. I also apply to brow bone, upper lip and nose for a natural, dewy highlight.”

★★★★★ Luminous moisturiser  Amy

“I use this on almost every person I do makeup on. I love the shade Goldlite and Peachlite for a warmer look. I prefer to use this as a moisturiser and then apply a primer on top for longevity.”

★★★★★ Love it Yoshie

“This product is honestly amazing. I use it to mix into matte foundations to make my makeup look more glowy/dewy and less chalky. Or I use it on its own when I’m not wearing makeup to give my skin an extra glow.”
 

Shop MAC Cosmetics Strobe Cream Here

 

Eyeliner Every Way: Classic, Glossy, Glitter
Joanna Fleming

A trend I’ve been noticing lately is the classic liquid winged eyeliner is being replaced by the less refined (and a lot easier to use) pencil.

This is a trend I’ve noticed myself evolving into – winged liner used to be my signature, and now I find myself turning to a brown smudged out pencil to enhance my peepers instead.

But pencil liner doesn’t have to be bland – in fact, 3INA has every pencil liner option you could possibly want (plus, they’re all under $20). And don’t be afraid to experiment outside black and brown, Allure’s Editor In Chief Michelle Lee nails the coloured liner trend.

The Classic:

3INA’s The Eye Pencil is a double-ended classic. I use this one in brown and trace it along my upper lash line, before smudging it out with the sponge tip for an understated smoky eye.

– The oil & wax formula of this pencil keeps your waterproof look in place all day

– This pencil allows you to create versatile looks & can also be used in the waterline

– It has a long-lasting, easily blendable & foolproof formula

– Features your pencil on one end and your built-in smudger on the other

Buy me here

 

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The Glitter:

This new pencil from 3INA is perfect for statement-makers and for taking your glam to the next level. But don’t let that stop you from wearing it to work if you’re feelin’ it.

– It’s a rich, glitter-infused matte kohl pencil

The Glitter Eye Pencil is highly pigmented, long-lasting & water-resistant

– It goes on smoothly and is easily to apply in whichever way you choose

– The cruelty-free formula features a creamy blend of vegetable waxes

Buy me here

 

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The Glossy:

The glossy lid trend is taken to a whole new level with 3INA’s The Glossy Eye Pencil. This glide-on pencil eyeliner (yes, pencil) dries to a high-shine finish. I know.

– It has an easy to apply, creamy formula that lasts incredibly well

– Draw on like a regular eyeliner & watch it dry to an oil-slick finish

– It’s drag-free, water resistant & highly pigmented

– Pair it with a matte shadow over the lid first for ultimate impact

Buy it here

 

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Shop 3INA Here

 

What Happened When Our Customers Used This Foundation For A Month?
Joanna Fleming

Pigmentation is right up there with the most common skin concerns we hear about from our customers. A lot of us here in Australia are sun worshippers, and unfortunately that can come back to bite us in the form of discoloured patches, age spots and uneven skin tone.

So we asked three customers to trial Clinique’s Even Better Makeup SPF15 – a foundation formula designed to treat pigmentation concerns over time, all while giving the skin a beautiful natural-looking finish.

 

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What You Need To Know:

– Even Better Makeup is a lightweight, oil-free liquid formula

– Helps to clarify skin tone & fade the appearance of discolouration over time

– Includes broad spectrum SPF 15 in a blend of chemical & physical sunscreens

– This long-wearing, buildable foundation feels comfortable & breathable on the skin

– Provides moderate to full coverage with a natural & smooth, matte finish

– Conceals the appearance of pigmentation-related concerns without looking cakey

Buy here

 

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What Ingredients Are In There?

If a product claims to be proven to treat a concern, you can bet I’m checking the ingredient list. Clinique’s Even Better Makeup SPF15 contains a blend of antioxidant-rich ingredients including an active Vitamin C complex which helps correct uneven skin tone over time, and promotes a brighter, more radiant complexion.

Coupled with Vitamin E, mushroom yeast extract, natural grapefruit peel and white birch extracts, these ingredients combine to help break up and banish the appearance of existing uneven skin tone, helping to prevent future discolouration. Plus, this formula is fragrance-free and non-comedogenic.

 

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What’s The Verdict?

Sophie, 27

“I have normal/dry skin with discolouration and post partum hyperpigmentation predominately on my cheeks and forehead. I had no issues introducing the Even Better foundation to my routine and it did not cause any breakouts. It was easy to apply with a beauty blender and provided light/medium, easily buildable coverage with a satin-matte finish. I loved the finish and it was very comfortable to wear. It hid my discolouration and pigmentation well and wore for 8-10 hours before beginning to wear off. Unfortunately over the four weeks I did not notice a visible difference in my discolouration issues, despite this I will be repurchasing as I’m in love with the way the foundation makes me skin look.”

 

Andrea, 43

“I’m blessed with awful hyper pigmentation, and this year it went a bit crazy . So when the opportunity arose to trial the Even Better foundation I jumped at it. I have been using the shade Honey for several weeks. Firstly, I was impressed with the coverage and texture – it sinks into your skin and leaves a lovely dewy finish (a no make up makeup look) perfect for everyday use. For nighttime outings, I simply add a bit of concealer and use a stippling brush for the extra coverage . As far as reducing my pigmentation I have noticed a subtle difference, I wasn’t expecting miracles but it has definitely softened the blotches and now they are almost invisible when I apply the foundation, so it’s definitely doing something.”

 

Christina, 42

“Clinique Even Better Foundation applies lightly and evenly, provides great coverage and feels like I am wearing a moisturiser rather than a foundation. Every time I have worn the foundation I get comments on how great my skin looks. In terms of my pigmentation, over the past 4 weeks I’ve noticed a slight improvement in the evenness and clarity of my skin, so I’ll continue to use the Even Better foundation as my go-to.”

 

Buy Clinique Even Better Makeup SPF15 Here

 

The Multi-Use Must-Haves Our Editor Takes On Holiday
Joanna Fleming

I’m not one to wear a full face of makeup on holidays. But that doesn’t mean I won’t insist on taking a whole makeup bag full of products I won’t use on my trip.

However, this time around I limited myself to only three makeup products – with the end goal of looking radiant and sunkissed (and not at all like I’d been in transit for 10 hours).

 

So, What Did I Take?

Well, I needed to address three things with these products. I want to look sunkissed and subtly sculpted, with naturally rosy cheeks and a dewy glow. So what exactly did I use to achieve all of the above?

Benefit Hoola Bronzing Powder

Hands down, this is my favourite bronzer of all time. I also use it to contour and as an eyeshadow when I don’t want to drag a palette around with me.

– It’s a universally flattering shade which works on most skin tones

– Has a matte finish with no shimmery finish (my fave thing about it)

– Easily buildable & blends seamlessly onto the skin for a natural look

★★★★★ Great bronzer – Kellee

“I was a makeup newbie when I started using this product about a year ago and I am in love! It’s so easy to apply and blends out well. It’s also a great size and has lasted me about a year.”

Buy here

 

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Clarins Water Lip Stain

This new multi-use product is super easy when you’re on the go. I lightly dabbed shade 04 Violet Water on both my lips and cheeks for a natural flush (I put Lanolips on my lips before applying for a glossier finish).

– Has a customisable sheer or vibrant pigment depending on how you apply

– The colour payoff is long-wearing & feels undetectable on the lips

– This formula has a lightweight water texture with a matte finish

★★★★★ Love this!  Alex

“This lip stain is incredible! I have naturally red lips and medium skin, and I love the violet colour! I apply it in the morning and it doesn’t fade whatsoever. You can eat, drink, workout, shower, and it stays on your lips for the day. Overall, I highly recommend this!”

Buy here

 

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KORA Organics Rose Quartz Luminizer

I couldn’t go without some form of highlighter, so I chose KORA Organics Luminizer in Rose Quartz. It has a really soft pink tint to it, which I figured would only add to my holiday skin vibe.

– Instantly boosts radiance for a glowy & brightened complexion

– Enriched with skin-loving ingredients & crushed rose quartz crystal

– The creamy formula blends beautifully onto the skin for a natural finish

★★★★★ Beautiful, natural highlighter Nora

“Firstly, I love the clean ingredients used in all KORA products. Secondly, this highlighter provides a natural, healthy glow for those of us who don’t want the obvious harshness of too much product. I mix this with a tinted CC cream [to even out skintone] and my skin glows all day long. Loooove it!!”

Buy here

 

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Shop Here

 

MAC-Hacks: All The Ways You Can Use Your Fave Products
Joanna Fleming

I really should write a book on all the tips and tricks I’ve learnt from professional makeup artists over the years. Who knew there were so many shortcuts we didn’t know about?

Turns out, a lipstick isn’t just for your lips – keep reading to find out how you can use your favourite MAC products in different ways.

 

Product #1: Lipstick

Believe it or not, the humble lipstick boasts more uses than you think – in fact, your favourite lippy shades can essentially replace another 3 products in your makeup bag.

Blush:

You can use any pink, peach, red or orange based shades as a cream blush. Simply dot a small amount of lipstick onto the apples of your cheeks and use a fluffy brush to sheer it out towards your temples. This will create a really natural-looking flushed cheek, and looks especially beautiful paired with dewy, glowing skin.

Eyeshadow:

This is a little on-the-go trick I’d never even thought of. Lipstick can act as a base to other powder shadows, or as a cream shadow on its own. I’d suggest using a dense packing brush to apply across the lid, then a fluffy blending brush to diffuse it out.

Colour Corrector:

On fair to medium skin tones, peachy tones can neutralise darkness, dullness and blue tones particularly under the eyes. You can apply a peach-toned lipstick prior to concealer to further disguise dark circles.

Shop here

 

Product #2: Prep + Prime Fix+

Just a setting spray, you reckon? Nope, MAC’s best-seller has cult status for a reason (and not just because it’s an awesome setting spray).

Go Sheer:

Customise the finish of your foundation and opt for lighter coverage by incorporating Fix+. You can either douse your skin in it before you apply your foundation, or add a couple of sprays directly to your foundation before buffing it into the skin. Finish with a spritz for a dewy complexion.

Intensify:

For a popping highlight, ultra-metallic shadow or glitter adhesive, Fix+ is your go-to. To intensify the payoff of your highlighter, lightly spritz your brush with Fix+ before picking up the product and applying to the high points of your face. For eyeshadows or glitter, drench a dense shadow brush in Fix+ and press the product onto the desired area.

Transform:

Fix+ can also allow you to transform other products. To turn your favourite eyeshadow into a liner, wet an angled eyeliner brush with Fix+, pick up your shadow on the brush and use however you like!

Shop here

 

Product #3: Strobe Cream

Ahhh, now to my favourite product from MAC’s range: Strobe Cream. This multi-purpose glow balm guarantees radiant skin no matter how you use it.

Prime:

Perfect for applying before foundation, this illuminating moisturising cream instantly brightens dullness and adds a soft glow to the skin. Essentially, it makes anything you apply on top of it look good.

Illuminate:

If you’re looking for that natural, dewy radiance, add a small amount of Strobe Cream to your foundation before you apply it. Not only will it give you a glowing finish, it can also help you to sheer out your foundation for more natural coverage.

Highlight:

The super fine iridescent particles in Strobe Cream make it an awesome cream highlighter. I recommend using fingertips or a sponge to apply Strobe Cream to the high points of your face, building up the intensity as you go.

Shop here

 

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The Brand New Brow Tool Taking Me Back To High School
Joanna Fleming

Having a 4-pen in high school was a hot commodity – the most in demand writing instrument you could own (that, and a fine liner).

I don’t even know if kids use pens these days, so they may not appreciate the significance of Benefit’s new Brow Contour Pro. It’s literally a 4-pen for your eyebrows – except the shades aren’t blue, black, green and red.

 

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What You Need To Know:

– This 4-in-1 brow tool contains four retractable pomade pencils

– It has a lighter & deeper brow shade, plus an edge definer & arch highlighter

– Allows you to ‘contour’ your brows for a naturally defined appearance

– All shade formulas are easily blendable & long-wearing

– Brow Contour Pro is available in five shades from light to deep

– It’s the perfect compact product to keep in your handbag

Buy here

 

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How To Use It:

Step One: Press down the lighter shade tab and twist until you see product. Fill in the front of the brow with the lighter shade up to the arch.

Step Two: To define the arch and fill in sparse areas, fill in the remainder of the brow from arch to tail using the deeper brow shade.

Step Three: Stroke the brow definer shade directly below your brow from front to tail and gently blend with your fingertip or a concealer brush.

Step Four: Lastly, blend the highlighting shade beneath your arch to illuminate the brow bone and give the appearance of a lifted brow.

The Pro Verdict:

“I personally find defining my brows with concealer a cumbersome process, but this pen makes it easier and gives me the thick, arched but natural-looking brows I always struggled to achieve.” Elle

“I like how easy the definer “lanes” make creating a super precise point at the end, and using all the shades in tandem tends to make my brows look fluffier overall. It’s basically like having four brow products in one.” Allure

“I wish it came with a built-in spoolie. But its ease for travel more than makes up for it, and getting the motions down is pretty easy after a few initial test runs. Plus, it’s fun as hell to click and twist all day. What can I say? I’m a sucker for nostalgia.” Glamour

Buy Benefit Brow Contour Pro Here

Your Favourite Japanese Foundation Has Had A Face Lift
Joanna Fleming

I’ve written about Koh Gen Do’s Aqua Foundation before – and it flew off our shelves back then (FYI makeup artists and countless celebs love this product).

As you can see by the five star reviews on the original, this liquid foundation has quite the reputation. Don’t panic if you’re a fan of the original, I promise this formula hasn’t changed much.

The only difference I’ve noticed is that it’s slightly more buildable, and the packaging has changed to a lighter slimline bottle, compared to the heavy, bulky glass bottle (which wasn’t makeup artist or travel-friendly).

 

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Is This Foundation For You?

If you’re looking for a foundation with light coverage and a naturally dewy finish, Koh Gen Do’s Maifanshi Aqua Foundation will tick all your boxes. My only gripe with this foundation is the limited shade range (I believe they’re workin’ on it). But let’s cover the details about the formula itself:

– It adds luminosity & brightens the skin with subtle reflective particles

– The lightweight, serum-like texture is buildable & buffs easily into the skin

– The formula reduces the appearance of pores & fine lines for a soft focus effect

– Contains minerals, botanical emollients & extracts to benefit the skin

– The sheer-medium coverage is easily customisable & gives a smooth, even finish

– It’s hydrating, comfortable & long-wearing

Buy here

 

The Skin-Loving Ingredients:

Suitable for all, but ideal for normal-dry skin types in particular, this Koh Gen Do formula boasts a number of skin nourishing ingredients, including minerals from the deep waters of Bretagne, France.

Jojoba Seed Oil is rich in essential fatty acids, protective antioxidants and vitamins A, D & E, so it helps to hydrate the skin and fight premature ageing. Olive Squalane maintains hydration levels and prevents moisture loss, while Shea Butter leaves the skin feeling smooth and supple with its concentration of skin-replenishing fatty acids.

The Aqua Foundation also contains SPF25 to protect the skin from damaging UV rays, making it a suitable daytime foundation.

 

The Reviews:

★★★★★ The best is better! – Christie

“I don’t know how Koh Gen Do continue to have the quality and finish on this luxurious foundation! I loved this before but the new formula is even better! The innovation and technology has made all the difference and I am more beautiful because of it.”

★★★★★ Beautiful light coverage – Britt

“After using Bare Minerals for years, this foundation has been a breath of fresh air. It’s light and blendable, without feeling like I’m caking my face with foundation. It reduces redness without looking unnatural.”

★★★★★ The best – Andrea

“I have used Chanel , Armani, Guerlain , YSL and La Mer, and this is the BEST foundation I have ever used . I love the entire line from skincare to makeup products and highly recommend Koh Gen Do.”

Shop Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Here