Manhattan double loop lip liner


This nifty little critter from Manhattan is a lip liner with a built-in lip gloss. Or is it a lip gloss with a built-in lip liner pencil?

Either way, you get one of each with this product, which was included in my March GoodieBox. I got a deeper shade than the lip cream from last month: this time it’s more of a berry tone. It smells just as good though and the gloss actually stays in place reasonably well (unusual for me).

I wasn’t as much of a fan of the lip liner pencil because I found it a bit hard: I prefer them a tad softer. This one was like a rock. I’m not sure I’d buy this product: instead of one good and one average item, I’d rather just have one of them that works really well. Besides, what if you use one faster than the other? You’re then stuck with carting around an empty lip gloss so you can still use the lip pencil.



Awesome ducking bags

The last Louis Vuitton catalogue that arrived in my letter box was so cute, I took some photos and thought I’d share the awesomeness. Of course, that was months ago and I’m only just getting around to sharing them now because I’m a bit slack.

Anyway, here they are!


Jemma Kidd Tone-on-Tone Duo

Jemma Kidd duoThis is a cream to powder eye shadow in a compact with two complementing shades.

The colours provided were neutral enough to suit anyone of any age (Silk, according to the compact), so I was pretty happy about that.

The compact itself is has a mirror in the lid and is small enough to tuck into your makeup bag.

The shadow goes on smoothly and looks nice on: the colours aren’t overpowering but have enough pigment to avoid falling into the wishy-washy category that so many neutrals hit. It also stayed on well, without creasing or disappearing as so many cream shadows do.

It actually has quite a strong metallic sheen to it … a stronger look than you’d expect from looking at it in the compact. Not too strong, but enough to be interesting.



Angel Helichrysum Revitalising shampoo & conditioner

2014-03-angell-helichrysumSamples from the Angel II Provence range were included in the March GoodieBox and  while I’m not a fan of getting little foil sachets in this monthly subscription package, I was pretty happy with the results from this product.

In fact, when my current supplies of Redken shampoo and conditioner are gone, I’ll probably go buy the Helichrysum Revitalising shampoo and conditioner s as a replacement.

A bonus of my new, rather short hair, is value for money when it comes to expensive hair stuff: my Redken supplies are lasting forever and I actually got three washes out of these little sample sachets.

This stuff smells amazing and is packed with good stuff to protect your hair from UVA and UVB damage.

My dry and quite curly hair felt soft after chucking this on, and it also had a wee bit of a shine.

Good stuff.

There were also sample sachets of the Orange Flower Shining Colour shampoo and colour protect hair mask but I didn’t try those because I don’t have coloured hair.However, if it’s anything like the Helichrysum duo, it should be good.

Although, I snorted at the “will strengthen hair from within” claim on the Goodiebox info card. You can’t do anything to strengthen your hair from within by spreading goop on it of any description, no matter how flash it is, how shiny the packaging, how good it smells or how much it costs. All you are doing is coating your hair in goop. It may feel slightly better to touch, but you’ve done nothing to the inner bits of it.



Fun with veges



Small victory for fat chicks

Radio presenter Rachel Smalley found herself in the poo after a not-so-timely comment or two this week but it was her attempt to weasel her way out of it that offended me.

Smalley thought her mic was turned off after a news story about the effectiveness of an emergency contraceptive pill for women weighing more than 70kg. Obviously gravely offended by the knowledge that the average New Zealand bloke-ess weighs in at  (gasp) 72kg, she was heard to comment that we Kiwi chicks are “heifers” and a “bunch of lardos”.

Outrage ensued both online and off, and Smalley did the cliched “apology” thing: I’m so sorry, please forgive me, yada, yada, yada …

But let’s be honest here: she was apologising because she was caught out, not because she felt bad about what she said. Because if that had been the case, she wouldn’t have said it in the first place.

As someone who falls into the slightly more generously proportioned category, I’m not particularly offended by her comments. I am, however, offended by yet another person in the public eye who has cocked up and expects us to believe that suddenly, they have seen the error of their ways and want us to forgive them.

On Facebook, several people commented that Paul Henry has said worse. And yes, he has. And I have no doubt he will continue to say things that offend the masses. However, at least he owns it. Love him or hate him, there’s no denying the man says what he thinks and would never consider offering a bullshit apology just to stay in the good books.

I’d have had more respect for Smalley if she’d just told all us heifers to fuck off and eat a pie.



Aveda Hand Relief

aveda-hand-reliefThis was OK, but not earth-shatteringly good. It felt a little greasy when I first applied it but did eventually absorb quite well.

At first, the smell struck me as a bit medicinal but the more I’ve used it, the more the smell has grown on me.

More importantly, I like the way my hands have felt after using it: clean, smooth and soft.

And at first glance, $15 seems quite a reasonable price, but this is for quite a small tube. That said, it’s actually a convenient size to chuck in your bag.

AVEDA HAND RELIEF (RRP $15 for 40ml)


Bet that was uncomfortable

news courtney

This is why it is important for headline writers to have dirty minds!


Goodiebox, March unboxing


The theme this month was “Blissful Indulgence”, which seems a bit fluffy given the contents of the box. Sure, there was little block of chocolate in there (and I was a good little diabetic and passed it on to my hubby), but the rest of it didn’t feel particularly indulgent.

Earlier this year the GoodieBox experience felt a little pedestrian but this one was a bit better than the previous month, which in turn was a lot better than January’s Goodiebox. However, they have yet to live up to the offerings from the latter half of last year.

Total value of the March Goodiebox: $87.87, plus whatever the Hershey’s chocolate was worth.

Here’s the rundown on my March goodies. Click on the links for full reviews of some products.

AVEDA HAND RELIEF (RRP $15 for 40ml. Full-sized product provided): A dinky week tube of hand cream with vitamin A and E. Not as perfumed as some hand creams. Not sure this fits the “blissful indulgence” criteria: it’s more functional than indulgent.

ANGEL HAIRCARE ORANGE FLOWER SHINING COLOUR SHAMPOO & COLOUR PROTECT HAIR MASK (RRP $39.50 each for 400ml shampoo/300ml hair mask. 8ml sachet of each provided so value approx $1.85): I don’t have coloured hair: who’d have thunk it? Anyone who knew me “back in the day” would probably have been shocked at the thought of me going “au naturale” with my noggin: no spikes, no streaks, no pink or purple, no nothing. Just boring ol’ me.  According to the Goodiebox info card, this stuff  can defy science and logic, and  magically “will strengthen hair from within”.  Bullshit.

ANGEL HAIRCARE HELICHRYSUM REVITALIZING SHAMPOO & CONDITIONER (RRP $39.50 each for 400ml. 8ml sachet of each provided so value approx $1.62): This is more my style: it’s for dry, dull and damaged hair. Let’s hope it lives up to the hype. Not such a fan of the stingy foil sachet samples but I guess there’s a pretty decent range of full-sized goodies to make up for it.

JEMMA KIDD TONE-ON-TONE DUO (RRP $48 for 3g. Full-sized product provided): A cream-to-powder from the range produced by supermodel Jemma Kidd. Says it’s non-creasing so it will be interesting to see how it goes, since cream eye shadows aren’t always great on older eyes.

MANHATTAN DOUBLE LOOP LIP LINER (RRP $18 for 6ml. Full-sized product provided): Another Manhattan product this month, this time a lip liner with a built-in lip gloss.

ROBERTO CAVALLI ACQUA (RRP $85 for 30ml. 1.2ml sample, so value approx $3.40): A Mediterranean holiday in a bottle, according to the GoodieBox info card. This was in a little glass tube with a squirter on top. Cute.

LIFESTYLE BOOSTER: Hershey’s Milk Chocolate (unsure of price): The bloke of the house appeared to enjoy this. I asked how it was but he just muttered something along the lines of “mmmmm” and carried on chewing. I think that was a positive response!

What is Goodiebox?

It’s a subscription service where you pay a monthly fee to receive a box of beauty products delivered to your door. The cost is around $30 a month (including delivery), and for that you will get a minimum of five “premium” beauty samples. These samples are generous sizes, and often there are a few full-sized products in your little box of goodies. Click here to join.



Manhattan Soft Mat Lip Cream

Manhattan Soft Mat Lipcream

All the way from Denmark, this product performs a little magic trick. It starts as a liquid but dries matte, so there’s no smudging. And interestingly, even though it dries to a matte finish, it doesn’t feel dry on the lips.

It also smells pretty amazing: none of that weird melted plastic pong you get with so many liquid lippies. Nosiree Bob, my one was reminiscent of a chocolate cake. Not overly strong, but there was a subtle hint of it.

I got a fairly innocuous shade that works well for my colouring without being too boring … sort of a coffee-ish colour.

I might even try this one out in one of the more in-your-face shades on offer.


Click for Invercargill, New Zealand Forecast


Jillian "George" Allison-Aitken

I live in the deep south of New Zealand, where smelly dairy cows are taking over from sheep in the livestock stakes. My hometown is the small but perfectly formed city of Invercargill, which is also the hometown of the original boy racer, Burt Munro. Find out more about me here.