My 2017 picks (not a top 10 list)

Ah, 2017, where did you go? This year has flown by for me, feels like I was just saying “Happy New Year!” a few weeks ago (I admit, I say it for longer than I should).

Now this list is not exhaustive, nor is it a “best of 2017” list – there are so many things that I have not used, watched, nor listened to – so how can I claim to have a list of the best? Instead, these are just some things that I loved in 2017. They improved my skin routine, beauty routine, gave me some joy or quite simply, helped me live a better life – so why wouldn’t I share it with you all? I’ll warn you in advance, that these are not all beauty/skincare related – how rude.


Whether they are $5, or $25 – sheer masks are amazing and have really had their moment this year. Every skincare brand seems to be releasing a sheet mask all of a sudden – and they are all so good.

[For those who don’t know what a sheet mask is – it’s a fabric mask that goes over your face and has cut out sections for eyes, nose, mouth.]

I’m not entirely convinced that they do all the different things that they claim, but they all seem to consistently add hydration and nourishment into the skin. Ideal for when you travel, when your skin is dehydrated or just when you want to up your skincare routine. You need some time for application; it generally needs to stay on for about 10-15 mins, and usually no rinsing requiring afterwards – just rub in the leftover solution. Read the instructions on the packaging.


Those who are long-time readers, and those who know me in real life, will know that I have loved the Dermalogica Precleanse Oil since my beauty therapist introduced me to it about 4 years ago. It removes way more product than other makeup cleansers I have used, and doesn’t require wasteful products, like cotton pads, in order to be effective. This year, Dermalogica released the balm version of this amazing product. It is in a squeeze tube, and comes with a silicone rubbing mitt – so apply the balm to the mitt and rub all over your face. This stuff feels decadent on the skin and just has that touch of luxe that the oil is missing. It’s very gentle on the skin, and gets off just as much product as the oil. I love makeup, but when it’s time to remove it, I want every last ounce of it off – the mitt and balm combo helps achieve this goal.


Now, what is life if I don’t include a palette in a “top/picks etc.” list? So here is the palette I loved in 2017, and I was totally surprised that I loved it as much as I did – the Too Faced Sweet Peach palette. This palette was gifted to me (for my birthday, not going to try to claim Too Faced is sending me stuff), and honestly, I probably wouldn’t have bought it myself. Colours looked OK, but I am trying to fight the urge to buy every palette that hits the market.

The colour combo and options in this palette make it worth the buy – they aren’t just replicating the existing cult palettes, like Urban Decay Naked range, etc. The peachy toned colours are just gorgeous, and make for a really subtle but put together look. They have a decent range of matte versus shimmer, and have thrown in some curve ball colours, like the purple shades. I’m not saying this colour palette will suit everyone, or that it was THE palette of 2017 – but this was something that was a surprise to me. The colours are very wearable, unlike some of the rose gold and pink toned palettes of 2017. It does have an unnecessary peach scent, but it is actually quite nice.


I’ve been part of a book club for a few years now, and this has helped me get through some books on a regular basis. I admit, I’m a bit of a crappy book club member; I have the highest rate of “did not finish” (but I do have the highest rate of attendance, so let’s not kick me out just yet). This book was a highlight this year and you would have had to be living under a rock to not know of it. It has been made into a TV series (which is really good and worth the cost/effort of downloading), and stars Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon, amongst many other big ticket names. I’ve watched the series and read the book – and I’m telling you, READ THE BOOK! Then watch the show, and you will love it even more. I know I’m not a genius for suggesting that “the book is better than the show”, but I’m saying it anyway. Even the most unenthusiastic book reader will move through the pages quickly. The voice of the book has not been replicated in the TV series (understandably), so it really has it’s own magic.


Raise your hand if you haven’t listened to a single podcast this year?

Nope, those people don’t exist.

Everyone is jumping on board with podcasts, so much so, that the options are somewhat paralysing. Honestly, I’m not one for self help books, but this podcast has really changed and improved my thinking in 2017. The goal is simple – to live a happier life. This podcast isn’t delusional – it’s not suggesting we are happy all the time, or should be happy all the time – just that we can always work towards something better. It’s a really easy listen, Gretchen Rubin is a great writer, and it’s essentially a structured conversation between her and her sister, Elizabeth Craft.

If you want to dive into the podcast world, the self help world or just want a fresh new perspective in 2018, Happier with Gretchen Rubin may help you with that. This podcast can be found on iTunes and wherever else you get your podcast fix.

And that’s it – short and sweet! Wishing you all a wonderful new year – thanks for reading along this year and supporting me in this written expression of myself, and the beauty items that I love.

And if irritation occurs, discontinue use… (or close the book, or pause the podcast).


Liquid Love

Does anybody wear regular lipstick anymore? I guess some people do, but beauty lovers are all about the liquid lipstick at the moment. So, what do I recommend, rate and hate? Read on!


Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick

ABH liquid lipstick.jpg

This stuff is amazing if you want seriously long wear. Unfortunately, it does feather and flake, but this can be minimised by applying some sort of balm as required. Huge range of colours, plus you’ll look really #onfleek for owning this.
Available: Online from Anastasia Beverly Hills website (shipping is pricey so convince some friends they need this in their lives also)
rrp: $USD20.00

NYX Soft Matte Lipcream

nyx lip butter.jpg

This stuff is the shiz in terms of feathering and flaking – very minimal. However, it doesn’t have the longevity of the others. Great range of colours, smells good and feels nice on the lips.
Available: Target and I believe Priceline is now stocking it also? Please confirm in comments. 
rrp: $12.95

tarteist™ creamy matte lip paint

tarte liquid lip paint

Arghhhhhhh, I love this stuff! Feels powdery soft when it goes on, and wears well. This is definitely the least offensive application of all the ones I’ve included – total pleasure to wear. Range of colours is growing, so keep your eyes peeled.
Available: Sephora 
rrp: $29.00 

Too Faced Melted Long Wear Lipstick

too faced melted

This stuff is good, but without taking into account postage and handling costs of the ABH liquid lipstick, this one is the most expensive of the range. It has a sponge applicator (not a sponge wand applicator for those interested in details), which I personally found easier for a quick application. Good range of colours, but nothing I have died over yet.
Available: Mecca Cosmetica/Maxima
rrp: $31.00

So, that’s a wrap on liquid lipsticks at the moment. I think this product area will continue to grow until the next new thing comes out… Lip tattoos, maybe?

And remember, if irritation occurs, discontinue use…

The US Wishlist: Palettes

So, for those who know my history of beauty loves will know that I am a long-time lover of palettes. One of the first makeup products I ever got as a teenager was an eyeshadow palette from an older, and therefore glamorous cousin. It provided me with hours of fun, and I have never moved on from my palette love. Fast forward over a decade, and Urban Decay introduced their Naked palette, which I think totally transformed the palette market. For so long, palettes were too cheap and nasty to consider as real makeup, and instead were gifts given from older to younger cousins. The Naked Palette began the incredibly competitive market of nude-themed palettes which are still dominating the beauty market.

I’ve picked up the Naked and Naked 2 palettes in previous travels, and am keen to add to my palette collection on my upcoming US trip next month. Unfortunately for my budget, there are many palettes that I want to purchase, and have resisted buying in the 6 months leading up to my trip.

Image The NARSissist Eye Palette
Incredibly expensive here in Aus (around $AUD139 when I last spotted it advertised – which I can’t confirm at the time of writing), and is quite obviously a luxe product. I’m keen to swatch this in store – if there is any on my list I can live without, it’s probably this one. It’s also the most expensive ($US79) on this list, so needs more thought.

Image Urban Decay Naked 3
I am pretty sure I could live without this – I have the first and second one, and was never particularly fussed on the second one. I absolutely adore the first one, think it suits my skin tone, allows for plenty of eye looks and I still have plenty of product. However, I’m a sucker for marketing and frankly, I suffer from FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). I know I probably don’t need it… but I don’t wanna miss out ($US54).

ImageToo Faced Chocolate Bar
I’ve only tried one other Too Faced product, which was the eye primer “Shadow Insurance”. I had a significant allergic reaction to it, my eyes puffed up like crazy, and I ended up having to give it away. This made it really hard to trust the brand, even though I know it was an ingredient in the primer solution, rather than the brand itself. The Chocolate Bar palette looks right up my alley with its gorgeous golden shades and chocolate-y brown shadows. I had a “Treat Yoself” day recently, and was committed to purchasing it locally at Mecca Maxima – it’s completely sold out until May. I can wait one more month and pay US prices ($US49), thanks.









Lorac Pro 

This is the one I’m most intrigued in – I have no idea where or even if one can source this in Australia at all, so it’s definitely worthy of US investigation. It’s $US42 (for 16 shadows) which brings it in as the cheapest out of these 5 palettes.

Smashbox Full Exposure








Smashbox Full Exposure


This is the one that is a definite on my list. I love Smashbox, I love the matte and shimmer mix, and the pricetag of $US49 isn’t horrifying. I loved the Masterclass 2 Palette, but there are a whole lot of colours in that, that I never ever use. I think this is a more practical upgrade, and one I’ve been interested in for quite a while.

So, that’s it from me for today. It’s a bit of a different post, as I’m really trying hard to avoid buying any new products, and instead trying to research and plan what I need to investigate and pick up in the US.