Goodbye 2013
12/31/2013

Goodbye 2013


"Never say goodbye, because goodbye means going away. And going away means forgetting." -J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan.

The above quote really summarises my feelings about 2013 quite nicely. Of course there were moments I would rather forget but all in all this year has been one of the best I have had in a long time. At times I was pushed outside of my comfort zone and challenged in the best possible way. I enjoy challenges, life just seems less exciting without them. Without sounding overly boastful I achieved a lot of the goals I set for myself this year, *snaps for me*. This ranges from goals I set for this blog to getting into my choice of major next year. There was also travel, like my trip to the beach at the start of the year, Wellington adventures and then of course Melbourne last month. 2013, you were brilliant and rewarding. I am going to miss this year but 2014 looks set to be even better with bigger dreams and exciting things ahead.

I hope everyone has a great New Years Eve day and night! Celebrate the end of the year in style and start dreaming about a fabulous New Year. I know that's what I'll be doing.

*On an unrelated, non-nostalgic note I have given my About page a much needed update along with my Blog Roll. An edited selection of some of my favourite blogs is on the latter so be sure to go have a gander at those. xo
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Glossy Love #2
12/29/2013

Glossy Love #2



Shop 'Til You Drop, Issue 1311-It's been a while since I last looked at Shop, especially since now it is available as a fortnightly magazine. I picked this up at the airport last month as I wanted something lightweight that would keep me entertained on the plane. This magazine certainly did the trick. It contained trend breakdowns, articles on street style bloggers and Alexa Chung, editorials and beauty how-to's. One thing that stood out was the mix of clothing and accessories, particularly in terms of price points. There was many an item I added to my wishlist upon reading. Shop have also made it easier to er...shop too with websites listed where you can pick up products. If you're after something quick to read then I highly recommend you pick this magazine up. 

Seventeen Magazine, November 2013-This was my first time reading Seventeen magazine. I know a library I visit tends to get this magazine but when I was younger I preferred reading Teen People. Anyway, Seventeen is for the girl who loves a healthy mix of fashion, beauty and of course pop culture. This issue was centred around the latest film from The Hunger Games franchise for instance. This issue also featured the lovely Lauren which was exciting. I'd definitely read Seventeen again but sadly it seems harder to find in New Zealand. 

Frankie Magazine, Issue 55-Frankie could have gotten away with naming this the 'present' issue because of all the cute gifts they've thrown in. Inside this issue you will find the usual bimonthly calendar, gift cards, printed envelopes to make and keep and a wall planner for next year. Aside from the extras you'll find the usual Frankie fabulousness inside this issue, including stories on Nans who rock out and a handy guide on how to not kill your succulents. I particularly liked the guide to retro plates and the ice-cream themed fashion spread. You'll notice this issue is pricier because of the extras but it is worth parting with a bit of extra dough for.

*What magazines have you been reading and loving lately? I'm always looking for recommendations. 
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The Sales Edit
12/26/2013

The Sales Edit



Christmas is now over and if you're in the Southern Hemisphere no doubt some of you will be off right now spending gift vouchers or money in the Boxing Day Sales. I'm sure the fairies behind some of our favourite beauty sites are aware of all this too because a few days before Christmas their sales emails started appearing in my inbox. Well, they've certainly collated some fabulous beauty things in their sales. I've gathered a little edit of some of the best bargains. The best part is you don't even need to leave your house to purchase them. Whether you're looking to treat yourself, or get a head start on gifts for next year, you are bound to find something you're tempted by.

Eyeko 'Alexa Chung' Set-This cutely packaged kit contains an eyeliner and mascara that both have Alexa's artwork and approval behind them. I added this set to my cart and hastily left the tempting Beauty Bay realm, 'nuff said. 

Too Faced 'All I Want For Christmas' Set-This is such an adorable set. I love the case it is all packaged up in. You get everything you need, sans base for a makeup look in this set. If you're looking to try out Too Faced then you should pick this up because there's a well thought out selection of products to try in there. 

Diptyque Philosykos Eau De Toilette-A fresh, fig scent that is uplifting and not potent in the slightest. Now that I have the Figuier candle as well this scent reminds me a lot of the fragrance of fresh Christmas trees so it's like owning Christmas in a bottle all year. Who wouldn't want that?

Essie Winter Collection-Festive glittery reds, navy blues and cashmere greys. Love. You cannot fault Essie polishes. They're long-wearing, easy to apply and they have a fantastic colour range. 
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December Favourites
12/23/2013

December Favourites


It's that time of the month again! During December I've been loving colour, glitter, and everything in between. Sit back, relax, grab a cup of tea or a cold drink and have a read of this month's edit..

Bobbi Brown Nail Polish in Chrome, limited edition*-It's no secret that I love glittery things and this gold nail polish is no exception. This glitter is easy to apply and the fine glitter pieces mean you can layer this over other nail colours, super festive. It dries fast and is super easy to remove, unlike most glitters. I'm quite tempted to go pick up the other gold shade from this collection as well.

Bourjois Color Boost Lip Crayons in Peach on the Beach and Orange Punch-I love the simplicity and ease of application that comes with lip crayons. These Bourjois offerings are pigmented, creamy and pretty darn long lasting. 

Soap and Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub-My skin's been a little bit scaly lately, particularly around my elbows and ankles. This zesty lime, lemon and smashed brown sugar scrub solves that problem though. Using a scrub like this one in conjunction with a body butter leaves your skin incredibly moisturised. It also helps that this scrub happens to smell delicious!

Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Ore-Pigments are perfect for jazzing up eye makeup, particularly during the festive season. Ore is a stunning bronze with flecks of gold glitter throughout. I like wearing this by itself or layered over other eyeshadows with lots of mascara.
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Josie Maran Coconut Watercolor Cheek Gelee
12/22/2013

Josie Maran Coconut Watercolor Cheek Gelee


There is something about eco-friendly beauty that's always appealed to me, especially the simplicity of what goes into products as well of course the fact that they're more often than not cruelty free as well. Josie Maran is known for her argan oil based products but it was these cheek gelees that caught my eye during a Sephora browsing session (please tell me I am not the only one who does this..). My friend Hannah of Shedding Glitter kindly sent me one of the gelees in the shade Poppy Paradise and it is the only blush I've been wearing this month.

Cheek gelees are like cream blushes but as the name would suggest they have a jelly-like texture. These are not sticky or tacky in any way. The gelees are infused with coconut water which is known to be hydrating and adds a glow to the face. The formula of these blushes doesn't seem to emphasise pores and rather than add an obvious streak of colour, you are left looking naturally flushed.
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The Week #85
12/20/2013

The Week #85


The Week in Instagrams @nanawintour: *An alternative to All That Glitters. *Pretty Christmas decor in Melbourne Central. Melbourne had such stunning Christmas decorations. *Fashion Reads. *Fun at Orleans and Lush blogger's event last Thursday. *A visit to the Selling Dreams exhibit on the weekend. If you love fashion photography then you need to go have a look at this. *Tuesday. I am loving that Josie Maran cheek gelee at the moment. *Christmas decorations! I love making my space look more festive. *New Frankie, strawberries and another new Christmas ornament. This one is from Bed Bath & Table, they have such a great selection. *Brushes that take the fuss out of using makeup

Must-Watch of the Week: Anna's Makeup Collection and Storage, hands down. I'm nosy and love seeing videos like this along with room tours, and hauls. Makeup is so pretty to look at, especially when it's colour coordinated and well organised. Sometimes I wonder if I'm secretly a Virgo. Anyway, makeup lovers, go watch it!

Product of the Week: Bourjois Colour Boost Lip Crayons in Peach on the Beach and Orange Punch. Lip Crayons are usually not my cup of tea because they tend to be sheerer than I'd like them to be. These orange-hued beauties have changed my mind about lip crayons though. They're creamy, pigmented and last reasonably well. You can top up the colour on these if you want to but after they fade they leave a subtle stain behind. I'm eyeing up these shades for Winter next year.

Must-Read of the Week: This is not so much a 'drop everything right now' read but more something festive that isn't your traditional holiday poem. Leandra and her team of Man-Repelling minions gave 'The Night Before Christmas' a fashionable spin. It will make you laugh and reconsider your wishlist. You may even be amazed that 'YOLO' makes its way into the mix. Read it for yourselves..

Added to the Wishlist: On Wednesday I came close to purchasing Kinfolk magazine but just missed out on the last copy. Spirits slightly shaken*, I noticed the new Kinfolk Table book on the shelves. If you've seen Frankie's Spaces book this is similar but it also incorporates recipes. It is a beautifully presented book and features stunning photography. It's definitely one for the coffee table and to take away on Summer holidays this year.

*Slightly exaggerated dramatisation. 
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Real Techniques: Sam's Picks
12/19/2013

Real Techniques: Sam's Picks


If you've been reading my blog for a little while then you will know by now that I love the Real Techniques brushes. They're great quality, super soft and built to take the fuss out of applying makeup. When I saw the Sam's Picks set making its way into the online stores I found myself loving the compilation of brushes included, and knowing that it'd inevitably be added to my cart rather quickly. I picked this set up on iHerb and at $30 it is an absolute steal. The set is currently out of stock there but it is worth waiting for. In the meantime you can check out my thoughts on the brushes included:

Buffing Brush-I'd always put off buying this brush with the Core set as there were other brushes within that set that I didn't really need. I'm not going to be shelving my Expert Face brush anytime soon but it's safe to say this brush has taken over when it comes to base work. Blending foundation in becomes less of a chore with this brush.

Essential Crease Brush-This brush, exclusive to the set conjures Mac #217 vibes. This brush is smaller, has a tapered tip and is just as fluffy so it is perfect for crease work. Having the brush be smaller makes it less difficult to go overboard with crease colours so if you're a bit cack handed like myself then you will find this brush a dream to use.

Fine Liner Brush-Sam and Nic often use this brush in tutorials for gel liner and it makes application look so easy. At the moment I don't own any gel liners but I'm going to have a go using this with some darker cream eyeshadows to line my eyes instead.

Multi-Task Brush-This brush is another fan favourite. If you're familiar with the Powder Brush, this is essentially the same brush but with a smaller head. As the name would suggest you can use this brush for anything from blush application to setting makeup with powder. I've been pairing it with this palette and find it picks up the perfect amount of setting powder without making skin look overly matte.
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Lush Christmas
12/17/2013

Lush Christmas


There is something about Christmas and Lush that just seems to go together like Blair and Chuck. Every year they always deliver the goods and this year may just be the best Christmas to treat yourself or someone else to some Lush. You can pick up one of their prepackaged Christmas sets or you could select products and make up a gift for someone else. Either way, you are bound to find something to satisfy the needs of even the fussiest of gift recipients. 

Here's a selection of some of my favourite Lush Christmas products. If you're after any of the above be quick about getting them. Lush often sell out of their Christmas collections, particularly as Christmas Day fast approaches.

Snowman Bath Ballistic* How adorable is this Snowman? You can't really see in this photo but he has a cute orange nose and even a red scarf. The Snowman bath ballistic has a scent which is very similar to the Butterball bath ballistic. If Snow Fairy seems a bit too sweet for them then this vanilla and cocoa scented bath ballistic may be more popular. 

Snow Fairy Shower Gel This shower gel is one of the most popular Lush products. It's hardly surprising given it smells like lollies and has a subtle shimmer to it. I like to use this in the shower with a loofah or in the bath as it really foams up. 

Angel's Delight Soap A rainbow coloured soap adorned with miniature gold stars. Sold. Angel's Delight is one of my favourite Christmas products from Lush so I tend to stockpile them when they arrive in stores-I'm on my third soap now. The blend of tangerine, orange and gardenia oils leave this soap with a delicious scent. If you like the smell of Starburst lollies then you will enjoy this.
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All That Glitters 2.0
12/16/2013

All That Glitters 2.0

Brushes Pictured: Mac #217 & Real Techniques Essential Crease Brush.

Stumbling upon a 'dupe' or an alternative to a high end beauty product if you will is like trying to find gold at the end of the Rainbow. This is more so true when it comes to products like Mac's eyeshadows. Other brands will imitate their packaging and create similar colours but sometimes the formula and pigmentation doesn't compare with the originals. 

All That Glitters is a standout shade from Mac in my collection and many a neutral-shadow lover's. It is the perfect champagne-pink with the subtlest flecks of shimmer shot through. As the glitter isn't chunky it is a lot more wearable than something like a pressed pigment or a shade with larger glittery flecks. I have often looked for similar shades at other counters and nothing has come close until a discovery on Saturday at the Makeup Sale..

A bin of L'Oreal Infallible eyeshadows caught my eye, in particular the shade Blinged and Brilliant. After swatching this alongside All That Glitters I realised how scarily similar they are. The key difference though is that All That Glitters is less pink than Blinged and Brilliant. The L'Oreal shadow also has more of a foiled look when swatched as opposed to a sheen like All That Glitters. When these shadows are on the lid however they look virtually identical, and both have similar lasting times. I wore Blinged and Brilliant today and it lasted 7 hours with no creasing, impressive stuff!

L'Oreal shadows are only slightly cheaper than a Mac eyeshadow in New Zealand but if you're after a cheaper alternative then I'd highly recommend this eyeshadow. I haven't been able to find this shade online but there always seems to be some neutral shades in the Infallible range on counters so be sure to keep an eye out for it!

*Have you found any alternatives to Mac eyeshadows? Share them below! x
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Fashion Reads
12/16/2013

Fashion Reads


So if you saw Friday's post you'll know my reading is about to take a fictitious turn. Before that happens though I had to share these two fashion tomes with you all. If you're yet to buy a gift for someone who loves both fashion and books then either of these are bound to go down a treat.

Tongue in Chic by Kirstie Clements This book is a work of fiction but it doesn't follow your traditional novel format as such. It is more of a collection of tales that has been gathered from Kirstie's extensive time spent within the fashion magazine industry. All the names and specific details have been changed so if you're like me you'll be speculating over who she's referring to. One detail that stood out to me was the fact they ordered Diptyque candles wholesale to the office because they were so popular. There were also stories of editors buying the latest trend pieces only to have them never see the light of day on returning home from the fashion shows. If you enjoyed her first book, or like me just love hearing insider stories from within magazines and fashion then you'll like this a lot.

Man Repeller by Leandra Medine A collection of essays in which life and fashion collide perfectly  probably best describes Leandra's first book. Each chapter usually features a key outfit such as the tuxedo suit and a life moment to go alongside it. Her story about an internship at Valentino was particularly entertaining. The writing really reflects Leandra's wit that shines through on her blog. If you're a fan of Man Repeller and are yet to read this book then get yourself a copy! You will laugh. You will be inspired. You may even find some fash-spiration hiding in its pages.
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The Week #84
12/13/2013

The Week #84


The Week in Instagrams @nanawintour: *The Summer reading lineup at present. I'm currently reading Asylum and Between The Lines. *A new season calls for a new pinboard complete with Christmas decorations. *Love Actually-viewing took place. It's mandatory in December. *New Christmas decorations from Smith and Caughey's. *The Melbourne Haul Part 2. *What's more or less been on my desk all week.

Must-Watch of the Week: I've been loving watching some of the Vlogmas videos lately and so far Alix's vlog has been my favourite. So much festiveness and it's beautifully filmed. You'll be left in a good mood after watching it. There's also been a new beauty channel discovery that I've been enjoying. Rachael Jade from Australia. We have similar beauty tastes and she mentions products we can buy and find in stores here and in Australia. Don't get me wrong, I love watching international beauty vlogs but not being able to find all the amazing things, ahem Oribe for example, is frustrating. Anyway, watch her videos because they are awesome!

Product of the Week: Soap and Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub wins this week. For some bizarre reason my elbows and ankles tend to get really dry and scaly around this time of the year. I've been using this on alternate days the last two weeks and my skin feels a lot less dry. This scrub smells divine as well. It's such a treat to use in the shower. Next on my list is the body butter in the same scent. 

Must-Read of the Week: Asylum by Simon Doonan. I tend to love most fashion books with the exception of style guides.  Simon's collection of essays about the people he's met and incidents in fashion are captivating and hilarious. He's been dubbed the David Sedaris of fashion writing and it is a very fitting label. 

Added to the Wishlist: A subscription to Frankie magazine. My love for Frankie is well documented so it's quite surprising that I haven't ever been subscribed to it. Not only would subscribing cut out the annoying wait time for it to arrive on shelves, it'd also definitely brighten up alternate months. 
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The Best in Beauty
12/12/2013

The Best in Beauty

It's that time of the year again, favourites time but not as you know it. I took some time out last week to go through my makeup bag and think about what products have stood out, earning themselves a place in the holy grail/daily staples category. As it is 2013 I tried to choose thirteen standout products and this streamlined edit have all been well-loved this year. 


Real Techniques Brushes. This time a year ago I was the girl going "What is with these colourful brushes? What is a buffing brush?", yes really.. Now at least half of the brushes I own and use are from Real Techniques. They're incredibly soft, just like luxury brushes and blend product like a dream. They're also multi-use as well and can often be used for more than one product or texture. 

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette, limited edition. While this has only been in my possession for just over a month or so it is being used an awful lot and will no doubt continue to be a favourite next year. This trio of powders add a soft-focus effect to the complexion which helps to dull down and blur any imperfections. The highlighting and bronzing powders are both quite subtle, you won't notice an obvious orange tinge or disco ball sheen to your face. All in all this is a stunning palette. 

Rimmel Stay Matte Powder. A transparent setting powder that helps to set makeup in place and eliminate any unwanted shine. The powder itself is quite fine so you aren't left looking chalky or caked in powder. While this may not be the most long-lasting it is fairly compact so you can add it to your handbag easily enough for touch-ups. 

Diptyque Philosykos Eau De Toilette. This fig, fresh scent is what I reach for when I'm not wearing a floral perfume. There's something about this scent that just feels sophisticated and classy without being overpowering like Chanel No. 5 for instance. 

Benefit 'They're Real' Mascara.* They're Real combines all the qualities in a mascara that we love and throws in a dose of longevity for good measure. The plastic wand makes it easier to separate your lashes without creating clumps or spidery lashes. Is this the best mascara ever? No, but it is worth trying out at least once. 


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Christmas Gift Guide
12/10/2013

Christmas Gift Guide

Last week I shared my beauty picks for Christmas 2013, but what about the girl who's just not that into all things beauty? Here's the best of the rest. There's something for Mum, your sister, your best friend and maybe even yourself.


A Sentence A Day Journal. I've gifted this a couple of times this year and own a copy myself and love it. This really stands out from your traditional blank journal. Each day over three years you answer a question in a sentence. There's a variety of questions on anything from your favourite colour to decisions you regret. I think this would make a great stocking-stuffer for someone, more so if they like writing. 

Sabel Cutout Bra. Pretty lingerie wrapped up in tissue paper and secured with a ribbon seems to get many ladies swooning. Lonely lingerie is so beautiful and can be easily mixed and matched so you're sure to find something you love. 

Glass Ornament. When I spotted this in Typo I was reminded of the cupcake bag from the first Sex and the City movie. Christmas ornaments look cute attached to the outside of presents alongside gift tags. Think of them as an extra present that the recipient can then save and use for their own tree.

Flower Cluster Ring. Karen Walker has an extensive array of jewelry but this flower ring is my favourite. It's simple, not too flashy and a classic piece. This ring is next on my wishlist, it's just so beautiful and I love it.
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The Melbourne Haul, Volume 2
12/08/2013

The Melbourne Haul, Volume 2


As well as the beauty shopping I did whilst in Melbourne there were a few extra bits and pieces that I picked up too. Everything else purchased was gifts for friends and family for Christmas, some of whom read this blog so I couldn't really share those here! Again, like the beauty products I was mainly trying to get hold of things that we can't readily find in New Zealand, here's looking at you Zara and Topshop. A lot of the clothing stores in Australia are identical to the ones you'll find in New Zealand so I tended to not go into those. On the whole though Melbourne has fantastic shopping, everything is so accessible and if there's something you cannot find in one particular place, there's bound to be another store nearby you'll be able to purchase it from. Like last week's post I've attached links where possible so you can find out more about these products if you want to.

Zara Basic Shorts. Floral print is usually what I gravitate towards in most clothing stores. When I saw these Zara shorts it seemed likely they'd come home with me. What I love is that they're quite dressy with silk material and lace trimming along the edges. These could easily be paired with some strappy sandals or heels for a more formal affair if you're getting tired of dresses and skirts over the summertime. 

Lucky Magazine, October '13. I can never seem to find Lucky in New Zealand so I grabbed a copy while it was there in Mag Nation. It's a magazine that I haven't read before and now that Eva Chen is Editor in Chief I was more intrigued to see what the magazine is like. Keep an eye out for a review soon.

Topshop Floral Devore A-Line Skirt. Topshop's an interesting place. I love their clothing but a lot of the time the sizing can be a bit off. Most of the time sizing up becomes essential because the women's sizes seem to run quite small. Anyway, I saw this skirt on the rack and loved the print as well as the fact that it had velvet embellishing. I love this skirt and it is super high waisted so it'd look best with heels in Summer. I can also see it getting a lot of wear in Winter with thick tights and ankle boots.

Karen Walker Cat Cookie Cutter, available from Myer & The Department Store (if you're in Auckland). The cat cutter isn't pictured above but we also picked up the flower, which you can see. If you're familiar with the cat ring though then it's the same symbol, just in cookie cutter form. How adorable is this!? I'm really looking forward to the next time I decide to make biscuits.


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The Week #83
12/06/2013

The Week #83


The Week in Instagrams @nanawintour: *American beauty, part of a new series starting from January. *My friends & I went to Taylor Swift's Red tour on the weekend. It was amazing, she was incredible. *Throwback to the Diptyque corner at Mecca in Melbourne. *Blogger Hannah of Shedding Glitter and myself did a swap. Post coming soon! *Taylor Swift concert essentials; red lipstick, cat ears and sparkles. *My new TopShop skirt-featuring in a post next week. 

Must-Watch of the Week: The Christmas YouTube videos are here in full force now that it is officially December. My favourite this week was Zoe's Christmas Bedroom Inspiration. So many cute ideas to make your space super glitzy and festive. If you love hot chocolates as much as I do then you'll love Ingrid's super delicious S'mores Hot Chocolate Recipe. It involves marshmallows, peanut butter and graham crackers so it sounds amazing!

Product of the Week: Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Ore. A bronze shot through with flecks of gold glitter. Once blended out this looks like you have a separate crease colour in play too so it cuts down on makeup application time. The Illamasqua pigments seem to have less fallout than their Mac counterparts and are really long lasting on the lids. This is my current go-to Christmas party shade. 

Must-Read of the Week: Lorde's makeup look is the talk of the town at the moment, having been featured and discussed online on sites like Teen Vogue and Nylon magazine's. Well now you can achieve her look as Mac artist Amber D has shared her secrets for the Lorde look. It involves lipsticks like Cyber, Rebel, Relentlessly Red and even All That Glitters for the lids. Read the full rundown here

Added to the Wishlist: It's probably part of Apple's genius marketing plan to make iPhone lovers feel obliged to stay ahead of the pack with their products. Well, I'll be honest..my iPhone 4 is beginning to feel very dated these days. In terms of taking photos and general ease of use it's becoming a bit frustrating to work with. So, this week I'm lusting after the new iPhone 5s. The champagne-gold one looks amazing and with all those fancy features I'd be willing to tolerate the average battery life. 

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The Melbourne Photo Diaries
12/05/2013

The Melbourne Photo Diaries

This time last week I was in Melbourne. It was amazing, as always. It's one of those cities that never ceases to enchant me and there is always something new to discover. If you aren't familiar with Melbourne it is a very creative place, in fact it often is referred to as the arts capital of Australia. On the whole it is a very fashion-conscious city and there is always sartorial inspiration to be found-if you keep a look out for it!

Over the week I took quite a few photos, mainly on my main camera and phone. I ended up not getting a disposable camera, partly because I forgot and also I didn't really want to buy one. If you want to see my Instagram photos from Melbourne then head to this post. Here are some of the rest though:

Christmas in the Royal Arcade. There were so many gorgeous Christmas decorations around the city.

A wall of necklaces at the Melbourne Now exhibit. They encourage attendees to make their own piece to be displayed on the wall.

Diptyque candles at the Mecca counter in Myer.


One of the chapels in the city.
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Christmas Beauty Gift Guide
12/03/2013

Christmas Beauty Gift Guide



















Beauty brands really up the ante and deliver the goods at this time of the year. You just have to take a wander through any department store's beauty hall to realise that. Here is my streamlined edit of all things beauty for Christmas this year from stocking stuffers to the more luxurious offerings. Enjoy!

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette I'm sure you've seen this palette doing the rounds on lots of the beauty gift guides. I even wrote about it. While this is certainly a luxe present you get three powders that take care of setting makeup, highlighting and bronzing. Hourglass have also thrown in a mini sample of their veil primer for good measure. All the powders are incredibly subtle as well and leave you with a photoshop perfect complexion. This palette is getting harder to get hold of so if you want to purchase this for yourself or someone else then you'll have to be quick. 

Benefit It's A Love Fest Set The Benefit advent calendar sold out ridiculously fast but there are plenty of awesome gift sets on offer to keep everyone happy. This one contains a great combination of products including my favourite Benefit blush, Coralista. Sets like these are perfect if you're already a Benefit fan or even for a teen girl who's just getting into makeup. Not to mention that tin would look so adorable on display.

Lulu Guiness Glitter Lip Makeup Bag Like nail polish, most girls seem to appreciate a gorgeous makeup bag. This Lulu Guiness offering is sparkly, features rainbow glitter and a perfect pout on the outside. The perfect makeup bag in other words. This is something I'd be happy to see in my stocking..

Alexa for Eyeko Set One for the Alexa fans. If you already own Alexa's book then you should think about adding this Eyeko set to your list. It comes with a liner to perfect the cat flick and a mascara. I'd buy this for an eye makeup enthusiast, Alexa fan, or..myself. 


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The Melbourne Beauty Haul
12/01/2013

The Melbourne Beauty Haul



I'm sure it won't come as much of a surprise to anyone that within hours of landing I'd already found myself in both Mecca Maxima and Priceline. Now this may seem like a lot of beauty-related products but I knew about this holiday for a while and had been saving accordingly. I was mainly trying to find products that you can't pick up in New Zealand and managed to do just that! For all my Australian readers I've put links as well so you can see where to buy everything.

Bourjois Colour Boost Lip Crayons in Peach On The Beach and Orange Punch. Ever since I've been using the bronzing primer from Bourjois I'd been wanting to try more of their products. These lip crayons in particular were popular in the Northern Hemisphere summertime and it is easy to see why. I picked up two colours I usually steer clear of but because they are a bit sheerer they look a lot more subtle and wearable.

Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara, purchased in Duty Free I was initially not going to purchase this because the duty free store in the city gave me a price for this mascara which was quite expensive. When I got to the airport counter though it was much less than what the salesperson had originally told me. It lengthens your lower lashes and adds a curl to them, which is something other mascaras seem to not do. This is the perfect companion if you want Twiggy-esque lashes. 

Essie Luxeffects in Set in Stones Essie has recently returned to the shelves in New Zealand but the luxeffects range hasn't been released here. This silver glitter features different sized glitter pieces so this looks stunning alongside festive red shades or as a feature nail. For a glitter polish it isn't overly gritty as well, which is perfect if you're like me and loathe the sandpaper texture on your nails that some glitters cause. 

Hydraluron This was a Caroline Hirons and beauty blogger-influenced enabled purchase. Hydraluron is a serum containing hyaluronic acid that is designed to inject moisture back into the skin. I haven't used this yet but the beauty-set swear by it so I will let you know how it performs. 
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The Week #82
11/29/2013

The Week #82



The Week in Instagrams @nanawintour: *Exquisite macaron tower in the Block Arcade, Melbourne. *Mecca Maxima's 'Beauty to Go' section-just like a smaller Sephora #heaven. *Dinner at Orleans last week-that chicken waffle is amazing! *Crazy cat-lady sunglasses in Sportsgirl. *Jeff Koons at the NGV. *A visit to the new Chanel boutique, again, amazing. *Cupcakes from Little Cupcake. *Zara+Tank=One happy girl. *I visited the Regent Theatre to watch King Kong. This is easily one of the most stunning theatres, ever. *'S' is for Sophie and obligatory selfies. *Gorgeous Christmas decor in Crabtree & Evelyn. *The Cult Beauty Wishlist

Must-Watch of the Week: I'll be honest, my YouTube subscription box hasn't been given a glance-over in the last week. However, I did watch some movies on both my flights to and from Australia. First up, Mademoiselle C about Carine Roitfeld and her invention of CR magazine. I didn't know an awful lot about Carine but it was so fascinating to watch her work and see how appreciated and admired she is by the fashion industry as a whole. I also watched Burton and Taylor starring Helena Bonham Carter as Liz Taylor. Again, I don't know an awful lot about Liz Taylor so I really enjoyed this one although sadly I didn't get to see all of it.
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Cult Beauty Wishlist
11/27/2013

Cult Beauty Wishlist



If Cult Beauty was a real store it would be an absolute treasure trove of all the greatest, harder-to-find brands and products. While it isn't physically 'real', thankfully it exists online and in the UK. The founders source the best products from some of the world's greatest brands and have them all in one easy place so you can buy or make wishlists to your heart's content. I am yet to personally shop on Cult Beauty-one day soon I will! In the meantime though I have compiled a wishlist of all the bits and pieces sitting in my cart..

Anastasia Clear Brow Gel I actually don't own a brow gel and have considered getting the Mac one from time to time. Brow gel is something worth spending a bit more money on if you want to avoid crispy brows. The Anastasia brand is known for their brow products so this would make a welcome addition to the beauty routine.

Aesop Parsley Seed Facial Cleansing Mask This is described as a lifesaver for those times when your skin's looking angry and congested. The clay draws out any impurities. It is said to be perfect for balancing oily/combination skin as well.  If you're after a new face mask then you should definitely check out Aesop's.

Dr Bronner Castille Mild Liquid Soap So you're probably all thinking liquid soap is a somewhat bizarre inclusion and I completely agree. These organic soaps are popular among the beauty set for brush-cleaning. At the moment I use whichever shampoo and conditioner I have in my shower to clean my brushes. Using something like this means you can disregard wasting your hair products.
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The Melbourne Makeup Bag
11/25/2013

The Melbourne Makeup Bag


I'm currently in Melbourne as you read this which means I am probably doing a combination of shopping, drinking amazing coffee, taking loads of pictures and behaving like a lovestruck tourist. Today I thought I'd talk you through what is in my travel makeup bag. Believe it or not this is quite minimal for me. Aside from some skincare bits and my eye brushes this will be it. On holidays I tend to wear less makeup anyhow. This is a more streamlined version of what I use daily in other words. 

Palettes and Powders With palettes I try to take ones that are relatively flat so that they fit into my makeup bag more easily. The Hourglass palette and my Mac quad are multi-use. My favourite Benefit blush Coralista is coming even though it's not so travel friendly, it's my go-to Summer blush right now.

Eyeshadows While I have my eyeshadow quad I also packed my two favourite neutrals, All That Glitters and A Natural Flirt. Eyeshadow is something I don't fuss as much with on holidays so these blendable, subtle wash of colour shades are perfect.

Primers Standard. My travel-sized Hourglass primer is coming because it has the best lasting-power and my Benefit one is close to running out. I may be eyeing up the Laura Mercier counter looking for a replacement primer. Watch this space..

Pencils My two Rimmel pencils are so easy for everyday makeup, a quick swipe along the lashline and a little bit of smudging with a brush or finger has you sorted. The flesh-toned pencil is for the waterline and my pink-lip pencil is what I pair with my brighter lipstick. 
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The Week #81
11/21/2013

The Week #81


The Week in Instagrams @nanawintour: *Reading an essay on Maxi Skirts and feeling nostalgic. *A palette standoff in a Wicked face of the day. *The best packages come in Bobbi Brown bags. *Britney came to visit! *I'm in the December issue of Teen Vogue! No cover stories or features (yet...) but it was pretty surreal seeing this nonetheless. *Another afternoon spent in the Emerald City-get yourself to Wicked this weekend if you are yet to see it. *Getting excited for Christmas with these seasonal beauty collections. *A preview of Monday's post. *Christmas at Bobbi Brown's. *The gorgeous stage setup at Wicked-it's totally not obvious I enjoyed it is it?

Must-Watch of the Week: If you haven't yet done so you need to check out Lily's Christmas Gift Guide video. It is a beauty lover's dream, so don't be surprised if you come away with a wishlist for yourself as well of course for your beauty loving friends and family. There are some beautiful products to be found here like the Jo Malone sets or the Nars Guy Bourdin palette.
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November Favourites
11/20/2013

November Favourites

I know this is a super early time in the month to be posting about favourite products but I wanted to get this up before I go away. The main reason being I knew I'd probably end up writing about products I bought and owned for less than a week on my return-#bloggerlogic. This month's favourites is a slightly unusual mixing of products but you should definitely notice a theme here..


Bourjois Bronzing Primer, available here. Dubbed the alternative to the Chanel cream bronzer and it certainly delivers. While this is a bit too dark for me to use all over my face it works well underneath  bases to add a touch of warmth to your skintone. It is incredibly easy to blend so you aren't left looking noticeably orange. You can wear this alone or as a primer which makes it perfect for lazy makeup days. 

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder, limited edition. This palette has only been in my possession for a week but given it's being used daily it deserves a mention. You can read full ravings here but this palette has highlighting, setting makeup and subtly bronzing the complexion all covered. Each of the powders is designed to add a soft-focus effect to the skin and masks imperfections in the process. The palette itself is sold out now but all these powders except for the highlighting shade are available separately so you can always pick up one of those. 

Korres Lip Butters in Jasmine and Pomegranate, available here. These are fantastic for keeping your lips hydrated and silky smooth during the Summer months. If you're wearing matte lipstick, or any lipstick actually, these are great to apply beforehand as they make your lips that much smoother. These are also deliciously scented and subtly tinted so they're the ideal no-makeup day companion.
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Christmas at Bobbi Brown's
11/18/2013

Christmas at Bobbi Brown's



Christmas is just over a month away. The streets are already beginning to look a lot more glitzier, decorations are around every corner. Don't lie to yourself-you are excited. This is also the time of year when all the beauty Christmas collections arrive in store. If you're after glamour and sparkle then you need to visit Bobbi Brown..

You all know by now that I think the Bobbi Brown Corrector is a lifesaver so I had high hopes for their Christmas collection and it doesn't disappoint.

Long Wear Cream Shadow Stick in Black* These work in the same sense as the jumbo eye crayons that have been popular this year. This shade in particular is one that is perfect for any smoky eye looks and it also works nicely as a liner slightly smudged out. Once this is on your lids it does not budge, even without primer which says something given my lids are prone to creasing any eyeshadows, cream or powder quite easily. 

Nail Polish in Siren Red and Chrome* The perfect Christmas nail combination, simply use the gold glitter as a feature nail or as an accent over the red polish. I haven't used Siren Red yet but will definitely be pairing it with the glitter next month. Chrome is such a gorgeous champagne-gold glitter. It is easy to apply and doesn't have the excessively gritty texture that some glitter polishes can have.

High Shimmer Lip Gloss in Pink Sugar and Candlelight* I received one of the glosses from Bobbi's Valentines themed collection earlier in the year and was thoroughly impressed by it. These glosses are pretty similar to that one with a touch more shimmer. Their non-sticky formula mean these don't feel uncomfortable on the lips. These glosses are quite sheer so they can be easily worn over lipsticks as well. I like pairing these with matte lipsticks as they make those feel more hydrating on the lips. 

Sequin Shimmer Brick Eye Palette* Bobbi Brown's shimmer bricks are always one of the first things I head towards when I'm in their store. They're sparkly, colourful and just so beautifully packaged. This eye palette contains a range of neutral shades. The sparkle is quite subtle, think Mac 'All That Glitters' so these colours are perfect for both day and night. I wore the two pinker shades yesterday with some loose glitter and it looked so pretty! This would make a great Christmas gift.


-The Bobbi Brown Christmas collection will be making its way into stores this week. What are your favourites from the collection?


*PR Samples
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The Week #80
11/15/2013

The Week #80


The Week in Instagrams @nanawintour: *Leandra wisdom in book form. Looking forward to finally reading this. *Flowers in Palmerston North on a day trip last weekend. *Sweet treats at Bluebells Cakery on Wednesday. *The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette which I speedily snagged and subsequently have made a beauty staple. *Sometimes all you need is a cup of tea and Gilmore Girls. *Some of Mecca Cosmetica's pretty Christmas products in store. Definitely go have a sniff of the Diptyque and Tocca candles!

Must-Watch of the Week: If you're after something beauty related to unwind with this weekend then you cannot pass up Anna and Lily's fourth Beauty Chatter video. Each month they film a video answering all our pressing beauty questions and often throw in some of their beauty must-haves as well. This month's one had me jotting down a lot more products than usual. Now if you're after something cute then this video of Zoe and Darcy shopping at Boots will be guaranteed to make you smile. 
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Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette
11/14/2013

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette


Hourglass has been one of my favourite brand discoveries from the last year. Their Brow Sculpting pencil and Veil Mineral primer are staples in my makeup bag these days. The latest release from the well-loved brand is their Ambient Lighting Palette and after seeing this getting the love online I knew it'd fast become a pre-Christmas present for myself.

The palette contains three Ambient Lighting powders and also comes with a 5ml tube of their primer. If you're unfamiliar with these powders they are designed to blur imperfections, colour correct and highlight. They are velvety-soft and add a soft-focus effect to the face. The packaging of the palette is very sleek and won't take up much room in your makeup bag at all. This palette is going to be perfect to take when I'm traveling later in the month. 

The three powders included are Dim Light, Incandescent Light and Radiant Light. Dim Light is my favourite of the bunch. Used as an all over setting powder this will keep your makeup in place all day without looking noticeably chalky or cakey. It leaves your skin looking pixel perfect. Incandescent Light is the limited edition inclusion and is the most glowy, making it perfect to use as a highlighter. I like to sweep this along my cheekbones with a duofibre brush and also as an inner-corner highlight. Radiant Light was the powder I thought I'd get the least use out of but so far I've been wearing it just as much as the other two powders. If you're paler like me then this bronze shade will be perfect for you. It adds the ideal amount of warmth to the skin and is much more subtle than a bronzer like Laguna from Nars. 

It is safe to say I'm really pleased I picked up this palette. If you've been thinking about trying the Ambient Lighting Powders for a while then this is worth the investment. Mecca have this in stock on their website at the moment but I'd act fast if you want one of these. Sephora sold out and I know Mecca in Newmarket have as well. It is well worth the search if you do manage to track one down. 

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The Reading Pile
11/13/2013

The Reading Pile


The end of the year seems to mark the time when all the brilliant books arrive in the shops. November is no exception and this bevy of tomes will have all your Summer reading and baking needs sorted...

Bonkers by Jennifer Saunders, available here. When I heard Jennifer was writing a book I was excited. If you're familiar with her work on both French & Saunders and Absolutely Fabulous then you'll know she is an incredibly gifted writer and a gem when it comes to comedy. Each chapter focuses on a specific time period or memory and is retold through Saunder's witty prose. If you're a fan of her work then you will enjoy this a lot.

Bluebells Cakery by Karla Goodwin, available here. There were some other recipe books that took out the most aesthetically pleasing award-but they have now been knocked off their pedestals. Bluebells Cakery is home to the best cakes and sweet treats in Auckland hands down. Karla's cookbook contains all her most popular recipes along with step-by-step guides to icing techniques and even a guide to throwing the perfect high tea. This would make such a lovely gift for someone who loves baking. This book is simply beautiful and the recipes are all easy to follow. Definitely check out the Vanilla cupcakes. They are divine

These cupcakes are also amazing too!
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Beauty Staples #1
11/11/2013

Beauty Staples #1

It is so easy to form a bit of a security blanket with beauty routines. Let's be honest though, plum red lipstick looks a little out of place in Summer as does an overly bronzed complexion in Winter. Now it's holiday time and there's a more time to spend having a proper hunt through my makeup drawer and bag finding new products to use and giving the everyday makeup routine an overhaul. 


Bourjois Bronzing Primer, available hereThis bronzing primer was receiving high praise from some of the porcelain beauty bloggers overseas so I was keen to try this out. It is compared to the Chanel Bronze Universal but is considerably more affordable. I've been using this every day underneath foundation or tinted moistursier-not so much as a primer but more so to add a bit of warmth to my face. This is super easy to blend and it doesn't leave your skin looking orange or obviously bronzed. 

Mac Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle Highlighter is a step I tend to skip when I'm rushing about. Given I use a lot of matte products though it is perfect for adding a glow rather than a sheen to the face. This powder is so subtle and has only a touch of shimmer to it. Swipe this along your cheekbones and above your cupid's bow to add radiance and a bit of something-something to the complexion.

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Vanilla This concealer is unrivaled at the moment. Given that the shade is such a perfect match to skintone. This works wonders at both concealing blemishes and under-eye circles. While it is a thick concealer, the creaminess ensures it doesn't crease or look too caked on.
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The Week #79
11/08/2013

The Week #79



The Week in Instagrams @nanawintour: *The Bluebells Cakery cookbook has arrived and it's fantastic. Stay tuned for a review next week. *The Mac Eyeshadow Collection. *A Halloween flashback. *Pretty flowers that I wanted to take home with me. *The Beauty, Body and Haircare stash on trial this month. *Sharing the love for Cupcakes and Cashmere. *I treated myself to a new haircut thanks to a Flossie voucher. *Some visual diary inspiration after culling my magazine collection. Not a fun affair might I add.. *More Bluebells cookbook prettiness. *Yesterday's face of the day essentials. *A pretty new Frankie diary that I won over on Twitter. *Some Lush Christmas goodies that arrived. Post coming soon.

Must-Watch of the Week: Aside from the stray Kardashian episode (#noshame), I don't watch an awful lot of TV during the semester. Well now that I am on holiday I've been getting back into Gilmore Girls, the first season to be exact. It's witty, features a ton of pop culture references and has the best characters. What more do you need?
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Rimmel Scandaleyes
11/07/2013

Rimmel Scandaleyes


It's no secret that I love eye makeup, more so if it's sixties inspired like in this editorial. Winged liner, dramatic lashes and of course shimmering metallics on the eyes are what dreams are made of in the makeup world. Well Rimmel has you covered with their new Scandaleyes* releases.

Rimmel Scandaleyes Retro Glam Mascara This mascara is the ultimate for fluttery, Alexa Chung-esque lashes. The wand is an hourglass shape which means that it coats each of your lashes individually. It really makes your lashes look fuller and dramatically enhances them. One thing I did notice was that it didn't hold a curl in my lashes but if you use an eyelash curler first then you should have no problem with this. It does not smudge or go flaky and is pretty water resistant too.

Rimmel Scandaleyes Eyeshadow Stick in Bad Girl Bronze Clinique released eye crayons earlier in the year which are very similar to these, just with a heftier price tag. This shade is very similar to Mac Bronze but in pencil form. It is a coppery-brown with gold undertones throughout. The eyeshadow sticks are so easy to use. I draw this fairly neatly up to the crease and then blend it out with a fluffy brush. You can also use your fingers too if you're on the go. This colour is really long-lasting as well. I'll definitely be picking up more of these.

Rimmel Scandaleyes Thick and Thin Liner Winged liner is something I tend to steer clear of. If I'm honest, eyeliner rarely makes its way onto my upper lashline. I'm just so clumsy and don't like having to take all my eye makeup off to fix it. Well those days may soon be gone. This liner has a felt-tip style nib. The thickness of your lines really depends on how you angle the pen which means you have more control over the amount of liner you apply. As always winged liner does take a bit of practice, I still cannot do it perfectly the first go. This liner certainly makes it a lot easier though!

*PR Samples
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Brilliant Blogs, Edition 14
11/05/2013

Brilliant Blogs, Edition 14

Last time I did this post I talked about Nouvelle Daily, a blog that hits the beauty, fashion and lifestyle nails on the head. Today's blog though is definitely the Queen of all the above. I bring you Cupcakes and Cashmere blog..


I was first introduced to Cupcakes and Cashmere by my friend Hannah and since then I have been hooked. Cupcakes and Cashmere is penned by Emily Schuman and is her place to document all the things she loves. It's a fashion, interior and baking-lovers dream in short. Emily updates her blog most days with posts on home decor inspiration, fashion, sweet treats and more. If you're on the go then you'll like Emily's blog because her posts aren't too wordy and always contain beautiful visuals.


Images via Cupcakes and Cashmere blog

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Mac Eyeshadow Collection
11/04/2013

Mac Eyeshadow Collection

It's no secret that I love eyeshadow so naturally I have tried eyeshadow from a few brands in my time. I always come back to Mac's eyeshadows though. They really beat out everyone else for pigmentation, shade range, longevity and of course being so easy to blend. There's been a few requests to blog my Mac eyeshadow collection, lipstick is coming soon. I have a mix of neutral eyeshadows in pans and containers, I'm in the process of building a Mac palette but more on that another time.

Here's what colours are in my collection..

These are all my Mac eyeshadows. I also use the Mac 217 and 239 brushes to apply these.

Amber Lights A peachy-brown with shimmer. This shade is a bit frightening in the pan and even on its own but it works well with All That Glitters and really makes it appear more vibrant.

A Natural Flirt, limited edition This shade was part of a Christmas collection last year. It is similar to All That Glitters but is more champagne toned. These colours look perfect on their own or dressed up with loose pigments and glitter if you're going for a more dramatic eye look.

All That Glitters This colour is described as a beige with gold-pearl. This colour is easily my most used eyeshadow and probably will end up being the first one that gets completely used up. It's one of those colours you can just swipe over the lid, do a little bit of blending with and be done. If you've not seen this colour before go to a Mac counter, swatch it and be prepared to add it to your basket.

Bronze If you're familiar with the Eclair paint pot then this is a similar shade. Bronze has more gold and shimmer to it than the cream version though. It looks stunning on brown eyes in particular and works well with a subtle smoky eye.

Handwritten This matte brown is both the only matte eyeshadow I own and probably my least used. I use this on my eyebrows usually but since buying a brow pencil I haven't used it very much. If you've got darker brows this may be a better powder to use than the likes of Charcoal Brown or Omega.

From left to right: Naked Lunch, Woodwinked, All That Glitters, Trax and A Natural Flirt
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