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HI :) My names Monique and i'm a 25 (almost 26) year old australian uni student that is addicted to health, fitness, food, makeup, beauty and fashion.
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Nail of the Day

Hi people,

First off i hope everyone is having a really nice weekend. Mother's day is tomorrow and i wanted to make my nails really glitzy for a nice dinner my family is having. I used a cosmetic glitter (received in my april Lust have it pack) over the top of setting nail polish to create a gradient effect. I then covered it with two coats of top coat to make sure my nails were smooth and not rough from the glitter.

Products used:
- Designer Brands Nail Polish Remover
- Sally Hansen Problem Cuticle Remover
- CND Sticky Basecoat
- Rimmel London I <3 Lasting Finish in 199 Go Cobalt
- Nicole by OPI in Prized Possession Purple
- i nuovi Glitteratti in Classic Drama
- Essence Quick Dry Topcoat

If anyone has any other good uses for the i nuovi cosmetic glitter comment below :)

Weekly Wish List

Hi people :)

At the beginning of the week i bought the may 2012 Instyle Magazine and have been lusting over a few things since. Here's my list of 9 weekly wishes, all from the may Instyle Magazine.

Brian Atwood Studded Heels

Herve Leger rayon-nylon dress

Rachel Gilbert Sequin Dress

Stila Smudge Crayon in Antique

Melissa Plastic Wedges

Karen Miller Silk Dress

 Burgundy Hair
The Bodyshop Cocomania Collection


Have a great weekend!

DIY Bracelets

Good Evening guys :)

I was feeling pretty crafty this morning so i thought i would attempt two diy bracelets. I found a bunch of diy bracelets off another blog at http://honestlywtf.com, picked two and gave it a go.

The first bracelet i attempted was the Braided Bead Bracelet which involved approx 1.5m of waxed linen cord (which i couldn't find at spotlight so i opted for cotton cord), seed beads, a two hole button and scissors.

(I only ended up using the gold seed beads because i realised the green wouldn't really match the brown cord)

This is the result! Full instructions are at http://honestlywtf.com/diy/diy-beaded-bracelet/ .
All up it only took me about 20 mins to make this one. Next time i might buy some proper waxed linen cord in a nicer colour off the internet.

The second bracelet i made was a Macrame Bracelet which involved about 3.5m of chinese knotting cord (which once again i couldn't find at sportlight so i opted for the same cotton cord as the last bracelet), a charm or pendant, needle big enough to fit cord through and scissors.

The full instructions can be found at http://honestlywtf.com/diy/diy-macrame-bracelet/. I was really proud of my efforts with this one. Took me a little while to get the hang of the plaiting but all in all it only for me 40mins to complete. Once again, next time i will be a little more prepared and buy the actual chinese knotting cord off the internet in nicer colours and look into getting a nicer charm/pendent.

Anyone else know any good diy bracelets?

Have a nice night :)

Amazing Gluten-free Cookies

Hi again,

I know an increasing number of people out there are becoming gluten intolerant and how hard it can be to find great gluten free recipes so i thought it would be nice to share a nice basic gluten-freee cookie recipe with everyone. This is just straight vanilla cookie, to fancy it up a bit you can also add nuts, choc chips, fruit or anything you want. My favourite addition is macadamia and white choc chips.

125g (1.5 oz) butter
4 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp natural vanilla extract
150g (5.5 oz) gluten free plain flour (all-purpose)
70g (2.5 oz) gluten free self-raising flour

- Start by preheating the oven at 170 degree C (325F) and lining a baking tray with baking paper.

- Add the butter caster sugar and vanilla extract into a bowl and beat with an electric mixer until well combined and smooth.

- Sift the flours into the bowl

- Mix with a wooden spoon until combined

- If the mixture seems a little too dry add small amounts of milk until soft enough to roll into balls.

- Roll mixture into balls and place on baking tray. Squash down to approximately 1cm thickness. Don't worry if the sides start to split, i just smoothed them over a little and they turned out fine.

- Place tray in oven for 20mins

- Take cookies out of the oven and let cool.

YUM! they kinda taste like shortbread but i think they're better :D

Lust Have It - May 2012

Hi people :D

I'm super excited about my May Lust Have It pack arriving in the post today that i just had to share the contents with you all! This month it came in a bright pink makeup bag opposed to last months blue makeup bag. I hope this is a permanent thing because they are pretty awesome bags.

When i opened the bag i was pleasantly surprised to find that we received EIGHT.. yes EIGHT samples in the pack this month. So if your interested in knowing more about what i received please keep reading :)

ModelCo Shine Ultra Lip Gloss in Strip Tease
This is a nice, shiny, nude lipgloss with what seems to be a fine purple shimmer through it. I'm wearing it right now and i really like the texture, not too sticky not too drying. I've had it on for the last hour or so and have yet to reapply. The first thing i noticed when i opened this was the smell... Strawberries! Anything that smells like strawberries is a hit by me :D

Evo The Therapist Calming Shampoo and Calming Conditioner
I'm really excited to try these too samples. A little while back i received 'The Great Hydrator Moisture Mask" as a sample and absolutely loved it. These two items are aimed at treating dry, damaged and frizzy hair which is a good thing coming into winter as my hair tends to get dryer and frizzier as the cold sets in.

Bioderma Crealine H2O Makeup Remover
I have used this product before, in fact i bought two large bottles from france and use them every time i need to take my makeup off. It's really effective at taking foundation and eye makeup off, even my water proof mascara. I just pore some on a few cotton pads and wipe away everything. All i can say is that i love this product and i'm glad a have a little travel size now.

Calvin Klein Sheer Beauty Perfume
I don't know how i feel about this perfume... At first when i smelt it i didn't like it but every other time i smell it i change my mind.. i like it, i don't like it, i like it... I've never really been great with describing perfumes and their notes and cores so i looked it up. Apparently this perfume both floral and fruity with opening notes of bergamot, red berries and peach bellini. Base notes include sandalwood, musk and vanilla blossom, which gives it a velvety smell. The perfumes core includes flowers of peony, punk lily and jasmine. I think i will continue to wear this then ultimately decide how i feel when the sample is gone.

 Lush Lust/Dirty Soap
I received a 65g sample of the lush dirty soap which i have been dying to try since the line came out. I have always been a sucker for anything that smells like pine or chewing gum (strange i know!) and this is exactly what is smells like! The card that came with the lust have it bag says that the dirty soap has smells of spearmint, sandalwood, pine and oakmoss. yummm! 

Caron Laboratories Bump eRaiser Medi Paste
I remember seeing this in the beautyheaven 2010 glosscars and saying i was definitely going to give this a try. I obviously forgot, so i'm really happy to FINALLY be trying it. It's supposed to prevent and eliminate ingrown hair and bumps after hair removal. Very interested to see if this actually works.

Nicole by OPI Ultimate trend setter's lacquer
This little bottle didn't have a name on it so i looked up the code and i THINK it's called 'I'm a Belieber'... Which i assume is from a justine beiber collection or somthing? Either way i think i actually like this colour. I took 3 coats before i got decent opacity and i was really impressed with the drying time. All three layers only took 10 mins to dry in total. pretty good for a nail polish i think.

1st coat

2nd coat

 3rd coat

Mother's Day Card from Rose Crane
This is a cute little addition to the pack and just in time for mothers day. It has a really nice poem on the inside. Unfortunately i already got my mum an awesome card so i might have to save this one for next year.

Overall i'm once again really happy with the Lust Have It pack. Compared to other beauty sample subscription services i think that this one is the best and would happily recommend it to anyone who has $14.95 spare every month.
follow this link -> www.lusthaveit.com.au for more information

Have a nice night everyone!

Morning Skincare Routine

Goodmorning people :)

So i woke up this morning really wide awake and keen to start the day. Possibly because its such an amazing day outside!

One of the most important things i do when i wake up is my skincare routine. I find that on the days i get lazy my skin hates me for it and breaks out big time. So for starters my skin type jumps from one extreme to the next as seasons change. Im spring/summer i usually have really oily acne prone skin with small dry patches on my nose, whereas in autumn/winter my skin turns really super dry all over while still being acne prone.

I started using this morning skincare routine about a month (and a bit) ago and feel that my skin has been the best it's ever been. I attribute my renewed skin to both my morning and nighttime routine combined (i will post a nighttime routine a little later) and feel that i have finally found something that works amazingly for my own skin.

So what do i do?

When i wake up in the morning i usually doordle around for a little before i wash my face with my Clarisonic and Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel. The Clarisonic, if you haven't already heard about it, is a 'sonic skin cleansing system' that is supposed to be 2 times more effective at cleaning skin than manual cleansing and 6 times more effective at makeup removal.

I received my Clarisonic as a christmas gift last year and have been using it everyday twice a day since then. I absolutely looooove this machine, even if it did take me about 4 months before i really figured out how to use it properly for my own skin type. Originally when i received it i was washing my face (Clarisonicing? lol) for 2-4 mins twice a day with an exfoliating wash (i was pretty addicted to my Clarisonic!) which resulted in my skin being really ridiculously clean but breaking out often. I read about the Clarisonics 'purging phase' which involved your skin clearing all the underlying imperfections over a 2-3 week span before it got clearer... basically your skin was supposed to get worse before it got better. I don't really believe my skin went through a 'purging phase'... more like i was over exfoliating my skin to the point where it broke out heaps. After about 3 months of using it and breaking out pretty regularly i realised what the problem was and cut back to cleansing for only 2mins twice a day, then eventually about a month ago i cut back to 1min twice a day which now works a treat for my skin.

In the morning i use my Clarisonic with my Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel which is AMAZING!

The Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel uses Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) from Papaya Extract to 'promote exfoliation and prevent pore-clogging buildup' as well as rejuvenating dull skin. I purchased this wash just over a month ago from the brisbane mecca maxima store for $18.95. I was used to using supermarket brand face washes and had never had any success with them so i thought $18.95 for a higher end skin care brand was very affordable and well worth the try. The gel itself is non-foaming and smells so so so yummy, hard to pick but maybe a mix between some sort of fruit (guessing papaya because thats part of the ingredient) and something very clean...? Upon closer inspection of the gel it has a slight green luminescent shimmer to it which is really appealing to me because it makes me think its making my skin more luminous every time i wash my face with it. I also like the little flip top lid on the bottle because its delivers just the right amount of gel at one time and there is no time consuming screwing on and off. Just beware not to get the gel in your eyes as it stings like almighty hell!

Finally my routine ends with the Clinique Clarifying Lotion 2 for Dry Combination skin, the Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturising Lotion and the Clinique All About Eyes.

At one point i went Clinique Crazy and bought a bunch of their skin care products. The Clinique Clarifying Lotion is step two in their skincare regime, the exfoliate step. It is a 100% fragrance free 'non-drying' toner solution that 'gently removes dull, dry flakes to uncover skin thats vibrant and glowing. While Instantly refining pores and texture'. No1: Unfortunately i don't believe that it's non-drying because after i use this my skin is so super dry and thirsty for moisture. No:2 Fragrance free- possibly... It doesn't have any flowery smell which i guess makes it fragrance free but it does have a strong hit of alcohol smell, which is understandable considering the second ingredient is alcohol. No:3 I do think it throughly removed dead, dull skin cells and refines my pores and texture. It doesn't really make sense to exfoliate my skin 3 times in the 1 routine but thats what works best for me so i'm not going to change it anytime soon. The bottle pictured above is my second bottle which i have been using for the last 5-6 months. I already have 2 other bottles lined up as backups :p

The Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturising Lotion was has been the only day moisturiser i have used  and loved for the last 3 years. I like to try out new day moisturisers but always come back to this one as it seems to suit my skin the best. This moisturiser is Step 3 in the Clinique Skin care regime. It's a 100% fragrance free Lotion that is used for Very dry to dry combination skin. I know that there is also a gel formula available for oily skin types but i find this still works well for me in Spring/Summer when my skin gets oilier than normal. I was always under the impression that this was an oil free moisturiser but i just reading the bottle now i can't find anything the suggests it is. Either way it doesn't cause me to breakout which is always really great. I like to slather this all over my face after toning and let it sink in for a good 5 mins before applying primer/makeup although if i'm running late or don't have much time i just apply a thin layer which doesn't take long to sink in. The bottle pictured above is also my second bottle of this particular moisturiser.

Finally i have recently become more aware of eye care so i got my mum to pick this eye cream up, the Clinique All About Eyes, on a cruise a few months back. It has been the only eye cream i have really tried so i don't have much to compare it to. This is a 100% fragrance free, Ophthalmologist tested cream that is used to 'Diminish the look of Circles, Shadows, Puffs and Lines'. I dab some of this under my eyes while my moisturiser is sinking in and let it sink is as well. It has a very light consistency and a little goes a very long way. Sometimes i forget, slather is on and it takes FOREVER to sink in. Although i assume Ophthalmologist tested means it's alright if it gets in your eyes, i would still try avoid this as much as possible. I find that sometimes when i get this in my eyes by accident it stings and SOMETIMES only sometimes causes my eyes to puff a little. Sort of like an allergic reaction?... Aside from this i still use it and find that it moisturises my under eyes really well and has possibly even helped with some of my fine lines. When i use this up i'm considering trying out the Mario Badescu Hyaluronic Eye cream or their Dermonectin Eye Cream.

If you can recommend anything better than what i'm using at the moment or you have tried any of the Mario Badescu Eye Creams please comment below :)

Have a great day!

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