WIN | One for you and one for me

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Exciting news: there’s a new and exciting feature coming to Hyacinth Girl! This is something I’ve been wanting to do for ages, and I’ve finally got around to putting it in place. It’s a series called One for you and one for me, and it’s fairly self-explanatory: I review something (one for me), and then have (at least) one for you, too. Is it essentially a giveaway? Yes, I suppose, but better. I’ll be featuring full-sized products with the help of some sponsors, but I’ll also have selections of minis to try too – because everything is better in miniature.

Continue reading for the very first OFYAOFM!

EYES | Mustard eyeshadow vibes

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Last time I was in Auckland I saw a gorgeous matte mustard eyeshadow at the Bobbi Brown store. Not being in a position to buy it at the time, I hoped I would be able to buy it from Sephora when ordering some other things, but they didn’t have it in stock, which led to several hours scouring the internet for the best matte mustard eyeshadow. Turns out they’re not that common! Eventually I settled on the Make Up For Ever Artist Shadow in M408 mustard. It’s definitely not a shade you can sweep across your lid when you’re in a rush to get out the door, but I love the colour.

LIFE | Celebrating a very special occasion

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Last week Callum and I celebrated our five year anniversary in the fanciest and cheesiest way we knew how: with dinner at the Hippopotamus and a night at the Museum Art Hotel. A staycation, if you will. The cheesiness was due to the fact we ordered the five course degustation at dinner – one course for each year we’ve been together. Lame, right? We never do anything romantic (I don’t even know if we acknowledged our anniversary last year) but we figured five years was a pretty big deal.

SKIN | Aspect Extreme C

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You’re meant to introduce new skincare to your routine one product at a time. I do this… it just happens that those times are all on the same day! I’ve been trialling the Aspect Extreme C 20 serum* lately and there’s no risk of this one causing irritation. Its extreme name is indicative of the extreme effects it has on your skin, but they’re the good kind. Shaving-five-years-off-the-age-you-appear kind of good. I don’t know if I really want to look nineteen again, but you’re never too young to start with anti-aging skincare, right?

BODY | The best and worst of natural deodorants

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Humans sweat. I seem to sweat more than usual, although it’s hard to compare, having only ever been myself; the assumption comes from the fact that ordinary strength antiperspirant/deodorants don’t really work for me. For that reason, I’ve always been hesitant to try natural alternatives, but since the opportunity came my way, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by one product in particular.

LIFE | L’Oreal Girls in Science Forum

Dr Elena Tucker, left and Dr Zoe Hilton, right

Dr Elena Tucker, left and Dr Zoe Hilton, right

When I found out L’Oreal were holding a Girls In Science forum to discuss women in science and introduce high school girls to strong female role models in science, I really wanted to go along. Unfortunately, like many good things, it was in Auckland and I am not. Fortunately, the lovely Teresa (you may know her blog, Brush & Bullet) agreed to go along and cover it for Hyacinth Girl. Anything that supports women’s education is something I will 100% get behind. I wish there had been an event like this for me to go to when I was a chemistry student in high school!

If you’ve spent any amount of time whiling away your working hours on Facebook, you’ve probably have noticed posts from the I Fucking Love Science page popping up on your newsfeed. Stem cells, quantum entanglement, videos of snakes devouring crocodiles — it’s 2014, and science has hit the zeitgeist. Science is for everyone. Science is cool. So you gotta wonder at all the surprised, condescending, and downright sexist comments when it turned out the IFLS page was run by Elise Andrew, a woman.

EYES | MAC 217 vs Bdellium Tools 776

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When I started watching makeup tutorials on YouTube, the most confusing part was the references to so many different makeup brushes, all labeled with letters and numbers with no consistent system of categorisation. Oh, the MAC 217? OF COURSE. While that ‘of course’ was initially sarcastic, I quickly learned that if there was one brush to have, the MAC 217 was it. Fluffy and good for everything from blending powder eyeshadow to undereye concealer. Expensive, but one day I must have been feeling flush and I ordered myself one from Nordstrom for $24 USD and I use it for everything ever since.

The thing with brushes, though, is the fewer you have, the more you have to wash them. Washing brushes is boring. So I decided to buy myself some more blending brushes… but slightly cheaper this time. I had heard the Bdellium Tools 776 was a good dupe for the MAC 217, and much less expensive. Now that I own both, I thought it might be useful to compare them (along with some other, inferior blending brushes).

SKIN | The lazy way to chemically exfoliate

AHA and BHA pads

As if I didn’t have enough chemically exfoliating products already, I bought some more in pad form – to support my laziness, of course. The Stridex pads are from iHerb via the Skincare Addiction sub-reddit, whose members seem to fall over themselves to promote these as a BHA holy grail. ‘Holy grail’ is a funny way to describe a product, really. The only way I could use these as a grail would be if I took the pads out and drank from the tub.

LIPS | Uslu Airlines lipsticks

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I’ve had these photos ready to post for ages, and I’ve had the lipsticks for even longer. But there’s no time like the present, right? (What does that even mean?) Anyway, here are some Uslu Airlines* lipsticks, via the lovely ladies at Outergold. The intention was always to write a post about how you can wear bright lipsticks to work because come the fuck on, you can wear bright lipsticks anywhere you want, which is why I am wearing smart worky clothes in these photos.

(P.S. If you’re reading this on the website, you can see I clearly have an ‘angle’. Lol.)