LASHING OUT: Kiss Me Isehan Heroine Make Volume & Curl Waterproof Mascara Review

Hey, babes!

Today, I’ve got a mascara that immediately shot to high rotation in my routine - Kiss Me by Isehan Heroine Make Super Waterproof Volume & Curl (I'm actually not sure which part of this title is the brand, I think Isehan?) This is probably one of the most well-known Japanese mascaras outside of Japan, and for good reason. This was actually my second choice compared to the Long & Curl from the same line, but I like this one better for lash separation AND lengthening.
I was looking for something new after being let down by Maybelline Lash Sensational, which left me looking super clumpy. I purchased this from The Cosmetic Store for NZ $28.90, which is an okay price considering most drugstore mascaras are NZ $20 - $30. I believe it does come in a non-waterproof formula, but a waterproof formula is essential for my lashes to hold a curl.

The first thing that I noticed (and LOVE) is that the wand isn’t loaded with too much product when you pull it out of the tube, an issue that I was having with Lash Sensational. The bristles are in a traditional conical shape, however they actually shorten on two sides of the brush. I always use the longer side and never have any issues doing so.

What I also love about this mascara is that it’s basically impossible to clump (unless you let a layer fully dry and try to apply on top of that, which I never do). I prefer my lashes to look long, defined, and fluttery which this mascara helps me achieve.

The only drawback is the waterproof formula can be hard to get off, and my favourite eye makeup remover to get it off is the Neutrogena Oil-Free Remover. There is a specific mascara remover* that Isehan sells, but the Neutrogena works fine for me right now.

Now, on to the before and after!

In the after, I've curled my lashes with my favourite Za Cosmetics Curler and then applied Volume & Curl. I ADORE how this makes my lashes look! It also wears very well throughout the day - no panda eyes or flaking. This gets a solid 5/5 from me!

What's your favourite mascara? Have you heard of or tried this brand before?

Lexie xx

rating scale
1 - Terrible: Negative effects on skin.
2 - Mediocre: No change in skin/claims not met.
3 - Average: Performs as expected.
4 - Good: Would repurchase unless I try something better.
5 - Amazing: Meets trifecta of perfect packaging, formula, & cost.


where to buy Isehan Kiss Me Heroine Make online

where to buy Isehan Kiss Me Heroine Make in-store
JapanMart | The Cosmetic Store

purchased / contains affiliate links*

HYDRATION STATION: Elizavecca Water Coating Aqua Brightening Mask Review

Hey babes!

I received this mask for review from Elizavecca, and am super excited to show you my results! This mask comes in a jar with a cute hygienic lil spatula. The mask itself has this super cool bouncy, gelly texture, which you can see in action here:

I’m not sure how else to describe it, but the texture melts down really easily and becomes very liquidy when rubbed into the skin, so a little goes a long way. I do find it’s quite strongly fragranced with a floral scent - it’s nothing that puts me off personally, but I can see it being off-putting for a few.
It honestly took me ages to figure out exactly how to use this mask - I saw various descriptions online, from a foaming mask (like Elizavecca’s super famous clay mask) to a sleeping pack, to a wash off mask. I used google translate to translate the instructions on the box, which only indicate to “take an appropriate amount and evenly spread on the skin”, without any instruction on where in the routine one should use this.
You can see the gel texture here - it sticks well together and doesn't slide off when I turn my hand upside down, but spreads easily as you'll see in the next two photos.

Sooooo, I decided to use it as a sleeping pack AND wash off mask to determine which I liked better. When I tried to use it as a wash off mask, I applied it just after washing my face - no essences or toners beforehand. In hindsight, I probably would have gone in with my hyaluronic acid toner to up the moisture, or even used this mask after a sheet mask to lock in any leftover essence. Anyway, after I applied a dollop on my skin, it eventually dried down to a matte-ish finish when I stopped trying to pat it in (I thought this would help but it apparently just needed to be left to set). After 20 minutes I tried to rinse it off with just some water, but instead I found out why this mask is called “water coat” - it had created a ‘coat’ on my face, effectively locking in any moisture to my skin and preventing it from drying out. After cleansing my face and completing my day skincare routine, my face was noticeably softer, even-toned, and hydrated. I definitely liked these results and was excited to see how well it would work as a sleeping pack.

As a sleeping pack, I applied it at the end of my nightly routine, swapping it out for my regular nightly moisturiser. Lately, I’ve been using the ‘7 skin method’, a popular method where you apply multiple layers of a hydrating toner to maximise hydration. I only need 2 layers to experience good results, so I popped the Aqua Coat over 2 layers of Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion. I woke up to AMAZINGLY well-hydrated skin - definitely better results than with my regular night moisturiser.


Again, the only drawback was that water alone wouldn’t rinse it off. When using this mask, it’s super important to remove any leftover residue to avoid blocking pores and causing acne. Unfortunately, I haven’t been using it for long enough to determine if it’s brightening claims on dark spots are working, but it does leave me with a nice, moisturised glow.

We can take a look at the full ingredients here:
Purified Water, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Propylene Glycol, Niacinamide, Ascophyllum Nodosum Extract, Illicium Verum (Anise) Fruit Extract, Caulerpa Lentillifera Extract, Adansonia Digitata Seed Extract, Bambusa Vulgaris Water, Rosemary Extract, Origanum Vulgare Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Thyme Extract, Lavender Extract, Adenosine, Caprylyl Glycol, Butylene Glycol, Cetyl PEG/PEG-10/1 Dimethicone, Sodium Chloride, 1,2-Hexanediol, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Chlorphenesin, Fragrance.

It's great to see niacinamide so high up the list - it's definitely the key ingredient for the brightening claims this mask makes.

Overall, I give this a 4/5 - the point is knocked off for the scent. I'm just not sure such a strong, lingering scent is necessary!

Have you tried this, or any other sleeping pack before?

Lexie xx

rating scale
1 - Terrible: Negative effects on skin.
2 - Mediocre: No change in skin/claims not met.
3 - Average: Performs as expected.
4 - Good: Would repurchase unless I try something better.
5 - Amazing: Meets trifecta of perfect packaging, formula, & cost.

where to buy Elizavecca online



where to buy Elizavecca in-store
The Cosmetic Store in Auckland Central.

pr sample / contains affiliate links*

BROW TALK: L.A. Girl Shady Slim Brow Pencil Review

l.a. girl shady slim brow pencil review packaging
Hey babes!

This post has been sitting in my drafts for AGES and I thought it was finally time to post this! I originally grabbed this brow pencil after colouring my hair black, but it’s been so long that my hair has now lightened to a dark brown, so I don’t use this colour anymore. It cost me NZ $9.99 at the new LoveMyMakeup store down the road from my work, which is reasonable considering how high NZ prices are for makeup. However, I’ve also seen it from NZ $7.99 to NZ $11 locally, with US $6 being the RRP.

It comes in 10 shades, with Black being the darkest and Blonde being the lightest. Honestly, what drew me to this brow pencil was how much it reminded me of the cult favourite Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz, a brow pencil that boasts a super slim, tiny nib to help draw on natural-looking brows. Unfortunately, I don’t own ABH Brow Wiz, so I can’t attest to whether or not this is a dupe, but Brow Wiz is definitely what L.A. Girl is emulating with this product.

It actually contains the same amount of product as Brow Wiz, so Shady Slim definitely wins in the cost per ounce department. ABH Brow Wiz costs US $21 (or US $7,000 for an ounce LOL), while Shady Slim is just US $6 (or US $2,000 for an ounce!) Another thing I appreciate about this product is the packaging is NOT bulky in order to appear like there is more product than there really is. In fact, 0.003oz equates to LESS THAN A GRAM (0.08g), which is kind of insane to me but it kinda makes sense - how long would the pencil have to be to contain MORE product with such a tiny nib? However, the slim packaging means I do sometimes find it easy to lose this pencil amongst the larger brow and eye pencil products I have stored in my drawers.

The pencil is kind of stiff, but I prefer my brow pencils that way. It’s too easy to overdraw brows with a creamy product (like pomade) so it really helps me create a natural looking brow. The spoolie on the end is great too - even though I’m using a different brow pencil at the moment, I still prefer this spoolie for brushing through my brows.
l.a. girl shady slim brow pencil comparison review
You can see it here compared to the Maybelline Brow Satin Pencil, which I was using before I bought Shady Slim - the Shady Slim tip is SO small compared to Brow Satin, which looks almost cumbersome in comparison.

I’ve also swatched it - the lighter line was drawn the same kind of pressure that I’d use to draw on my brows, and the second is a hard swatch to show the true black of the pencil.
l.a. girl shady slim brow pencil swatch nc25 light medium skin
Overall, I would definitely repurchase and recommend this product! It’s cheap & does the job well. This wee little brow pencil gets a 5/5 from me!

Have you tried this or Brow Wiz? What's your favourite brow product?

Lexie xx

rating scale
1 - Terrible: Negative effects on skin.
2 - Mediocre: No change in skin/claims not met.
3 - Average: Performs as expected.
4 - Good: Would repurchase unless I try something better.
5 - Amazing: Meets trifecta of perfect packaging, formula, & cost.



where to buy L.A. Girl online

where to buy L.A. Girl in-store
LoveMyMakeup | Unichem Pharmacy

purchased

OH, SHEET: Elizavecca 3-Step Pore Solution Super Elastic Mask Pack Review

elizavecca pore solution mask pack review front packaging
Hey babes!

Another of the items that Elizavecca kindly sent me for review is this 3-Step mask pack! I was pretty excited to try this as I’ve never tried a three step mask before, and was keen to see how it would help my skin. The one that was selected for me is the Pore Solution mask, which is meant to tighten pores. I do have oily skin and some gross pores around my nose, so I had high hopes for this. I was initially super confused by the packaging of this mask - the image on the front of the packaging seems to imply that this is a peel off mask that physically pulls gunk from your pores, when that isn’t the case. The mask also comes with a cleanser and essence to prep the skin and make the most of the beneficial ingredients of this mask. 
I found the cleanser to be super thick, and frothed into an even thicker, luxurious foam - it felt SO GOOD on my face. However, it felt very alkaline, and showed a pH of 8 when tested, which is too alkaline for use on skin. It was also very fragranced - the entire line has a clean, floral fragrance (to my nose at least). It didn’t bother me that much, but I know not everyone loves strong fragrances! After drying, I patted the essence on.
The essence was incredibly thick and viscous - the thickest essence I’ve ever seen! It was reasonably easy to spread and apply to the skin, but it didn’t really seem to melt or absorb into my skin. After trying to pat it in, I moved onto the mask.
It fit reasonably well to my face - the only thing I didn’t like was that the thicker material made it crease and hang off my chin a little bit, but this wasn’t a massive issue. The mask was soaked in essence, but not so much that it was dripping off my face.
There was definitely a massive improvement in hydration and redness when I took the mask off - my face was visibly soothed, with irritated pimples less red and raised. I didn’t find that my pores were more reduced than with any other mask, unfortunately.

Taking a look at the ingredients list, it’s good to see niacinamide so high up for brightening and evening skin tone. I could only find a list from COSDNA, so I’m unable to verify if this is the exact list that is on the back of the packaging. There are a few botanical ingredients too, such as a red seaweed, chia seed, and green tea extracts. It also boasts swiftlet nest extract, which is the same type of nest found in the famous birds’ nest soup. 

Water, Glacier Water, Dipropylene Glycol, Glycerin, Niacinamide, Butylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Betaine, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Chlorphenesin, Jania Rubens (Red Seaweed) Extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Maltooligosyl Glucoside, C12-14 Hydroxyalkyl Maltitol Ether, Polyglutamic Acid, Fucose, Mineral Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Salvia Hispanica Seed Extract,Camellia Sinensis Leaf Oil, Carbomer, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Potassium Hydroxide, Adenosine, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Hyaluronate, Charcoal powder, Swiftlet Nest Extract


Overall, this gets a 3/5 from me. I didn’t think the cleansing step was absolutely essential, but having the right essence to prep your skin beforehand can take a mask from average to amazing. I did enjoy the results from this mask, but I'm not sure the packaging on the front accurately reflects the type of mask this is.

Have you tried a multi-step mask before?

Lexie xx

rating scale
1 - Terrible: Negative effects on skin.
2 - Mediocre: No change in skin/claims not met.
3 - Average: Performs as expected.
4 - Good: Would repurchase unless I try something better.
5 - Amazing: Meets trifecta of perfect packaging, formula, & cost.



where to buy Elizavecca online

where to buy Elizavecca in-store
I haven't seen this product in NZ.

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NOT THAT KIND OF BUBBLY: Wish Formula C200 Bubble Peeling Pad Review

wish formula bubble peeling pad review packaging
Hey babes!

I have another exciting review of a product kindly provided by Wish Formula & Jolse. The C200 Bubble Peeling Pad is a product design to help exfoliate and brighten the skin using acids and fermented botanical extracts. What I think is pretty sweet about it is that it just foams when you squeeze the pad - I’ve never seen anything else like this and was keen to try.
The puff itself is double sided, with netting on one side and soft sponge on the other. It has a fresh, lemony scent which I found quite pleasant, and not overwhelming at all. It foamed easily when squeezed, and I’ve made a gif to show just how easily it foams:
In order to exfoliate & brighten, the formula boasts lactic, glycolic, AND ascorbic acid. That’s a lot of acids to have on your skin at once, but all three are great for exfoliating and evening skin tone. It has a slew of other great botanical ingredients, seen here in the ingredients list:

Water, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Potassium Cocoyl Glycinate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Cocamide DEA, Lactic Acid, Glycolic Acid, Glycerin, Dipropylene Glycol, Ascorbic Acid, Polyglutamic Acid, Apium Graveolens (Celery) Extract, Brassia Oleracea Capitata (Cabbage) Leaf Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Extract, Solanum Lycoperisum (Tomato) Fruit/Leaf/Stem Extract, Brassica Rapa (Turnip) Leaf Extract, Daucus Carota Sativa (carrot) Root Extract, Brassica Oleacea Italica (Broccoli) Extract, Arginine, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder, DMDM Hydantoin

Unfortunately, my experience with this pad wasn’t very good. I used it on a bare, clean face using the rough side first (as per instructions). It stung on any fresh pimples, which is pretty common for anything acidic. However, despite how lightly I was trying to apply pressure with the puff, the abrasive netting and acidic foam was just too much for my skin. It began to sting all over quite unbearably, and I wasn’t able to flip the pad to the soft side to pat all over my face. I had to rinse it off of my face ASAP! After rinsing off my face I discovered I had somehow actually scratched my face with the pad. I applied a mask afterwards like instructions suggested, which definitely helped to relieve how parched my skin was feeling after such rough exfoliation. 

I did notice that my skin was definitely smoother after moisturising, but I also had new breakouts in places i don’t normally break out in the days after using. 

Unfortunately, I can’t recommend this product. It was definitely too much for my sensitive skin. A 1/5 from me.

Lexie xx

rating scale
1 - Terrible: Negative effects on skin.
2 - Mediocre: No change in skin/claims not met.
3 - Average: Performs as expected.
4 - Good: Would repurchase unless I try something better.
5 - Amazing: Meets trifecta of perfect packaging, formula, & cost.



where to buy Wish Formula online
Jolse

where to buy Wish Formula in-store
I have not seen this brand in NZ.

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ROSES & HONEY: Papa Recipe Bombee Rose Gold Honey Mask Review

Hey babes!

I have a new release from Papa Recipe today - the Bombee Rose Gold Honey mask. I was pretty excited for this and picked it up as soon as it was in stock at one of my favourite local AB shops, The Cosmetic Store. I paid NZ $26.90 for a box of 5. It comes in gorgeous pink-toned packaging, and boasts rose extract and gold as key ingredients, in addition to the usual honey, propolis, and royal jelly in Bombee masks.
For some reason, I initially thought these masks were hydrogels - I'm not really sure how I got that idea into my head, but because I thought they were, NZ $26.90 was seemed reasonable for 5 masks. When I opened them and realised that they were actually made of normal sheetmask material, I definitely felt a little let down. The gold pattern LOOKS cool but I don't believe it provides any other benefit.
On opening, the scent is definitely the same of the original Bombee mask, if only a slight touch more floral and less sweet. Like the normal line, the sheetmask is soaked with essence.

Water, Methylpropanediol, Glycereth-26, Glycerin, 1,2-Hexanediol, Rosa Damascena Flower Water (1,000ppm), Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract (10ppm), Propolis Extract, Honey Extract, Pearl Extract, Royal Jelly Extract, Butylene Glycol, Betain, Allantoin, Panthenol, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, Potassium Hydroxide, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Gold (10ppm), Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Carbomer, Tromethamine, Chondrus Crispus Flower, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Ethyl Hexanediol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Fragrance
papa recipe rose gold honey mask review ingredients packaging
To be honest, I wouldn't recommend this over the regular line in the interest of cost and actual benefit. There is currently no genuine scientific evidence to prove that gold has any benefit for skin, which is a shame as that's the driver for the higher price of these masks.

I didn't find this as hydrating as the original line either. My skin definitely was more hydrated and bouncy than before wearing the mask, it just wasn't AS bouncy as it could have been, or really should have been considering the higher price and premium ingredients of this mask.

I did like the overall fit of this mask better than the original Bombee - it's slightly smaller, so I have less overlap of the mask going straight onto my hair. I also found that it generally adhered to my face very well with minimal discomfort. While it is a little bit thicker than the original mask, it still feels luxurious to wear.
papa recipe rose gold honey mask e review fit
Overall, this gets a 3/5 from me. It's not that it doesn't work, but I don't think the extra ingredients (especially the gold) are worth a higher pricepoint than the original Bombee mask*, which I can find locally for NZ $19.90/box of 10.

Have you tried anything from Papa Recipe, or any honey-based skincare?

Lexie xx

rating scale
1 - Terrible: Negative effects on skin.
2 - Mediocre: No change in skin/claims not met.
3 - Average: Performs as expected.
4 - Good: Would repurchase unless I try something better.
5 - Amazing: Meets trifecta of perfect packaging, formula, & cost.


where to buy Papa Recipe online

where to buy Papa Recipe in-store
Ippondo | The Cosmetic Store

purchased / contains affiliate links*

GOING BATTY: Wish Formula The Bat Eye Mask Review

wish formula bat eye mask review kbeauty
Hey babes!

I’ve got another product kindly sent from Jolse for review today - the Wish Formula Bat Eye Mask. The key ingredients are centella and honey, along with some ferments too. It claims to brighten and hydrate the undereye area for a more even skintone. I don’t have much darkness in my undereye area (at least I thought I didn’t) but I was definitely pleasantly surprised by this product! 
Each mask comes individually wrapped with 8ml of essence. The mask was definitely well-soaked in it, and there was heaps of excess in the packet which I tapped all over my face. One of the first things I noticed was a faint vinegar smell from the mask when I opened it. It wasn’t overwhelmingly unpleasant, but it was definitely there. Luckily it wasn’t a lingering scent!

I was curious to see how this mask would work for me because I do not at all think I have dark circles/any kind of darkness on my undereye area. I found that the flap that goes between the brows tended to droop away from my face, but otherwise it stuck to the rest of my face quite well. 
When I removed the mask after 30 minutes, I was SO surprised to see that my undereye area actually looked brighter and more even! Like I said before - I don’t consider myself to have any issues in my undereye area so I was surprised to see such a noticeable difference! I liked the result so much that I genuinely think this formula should be made into a full face mask, perhaps without the vinegary smell…

Let’s take a look at ingredients:

Water, Diproplyene Glycol, Glycerin, Blackstrap (Blackstrap Molasses) Powder, Butylglycerin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Arctium Lappa (Greater Burdock) Root Extract, Citrus Lemon Fruit Extract, Humulus Lupulus (Hops) Extract, Hypericum Perforatum (St John’s Wort) Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf Extract, Calendula Officinalis (Marigold) Flower Extract, Saponaria Officinalis (Carnation) Leaf/Root Extract, Saccharomyces/Honey Ferment Filtrate, Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola) Extract, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Beta-Glucan, Lactobacillus/Olive Leaf Ferment Extract, Saccharomyces/Peppermint Leaf Ferment Filtrate, Lactobacillus/Clover Water Ferment Extract, Panthenol, Ascorbic Acid, Allantoin, Adenosine, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Chlorphenesin

A lot of online retailers seem to hype up the vitamin c in this mask, but it’s quite far down the bottom of the list, meaning it probably isn’t present in an amount to have a significant effect. This is the list straight off the back of the packaging - I found a lot of discrepancies in the lists online, but I’ll follow this one as it’s literally on the back of the packaging.  
I’m definitely super tempted to buy more, however it’s definitely better value to buy a pack of 10 for around US $20, as the masks are individually priced at US $3-4, depending on where you look. 

This gets a 4.5/5 from me - the .5 knocked off is a combination of the vinegar smell and the relatively high price for something that really only masks a small portion of the face.

Have you tried any really great undereye masks lately? Let me know! Lexie xx

rating scale
1 - Terrible: Negative effects on skin.
2 - Mediocre: No change in skin/claims not met.
3 - Average: Performs as expected.
4 - Good: Would repurchase unless I try something better.
5 - Amazing: Meets trifecta of perfect packaging, formula, & cost.


where to buy Wish Formula online
 Jolsebeautibi | GlowRecipe | MemeBox | RoseRoseShop

where to buy Wish Formula in-store
I have not seen Wish Formula in NZ.

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