Mecca Maxima Wellington opened last week and I was invited to check it out on opening day. Wellington has been waiting for this for a long time—the Christchurch store opened earlier this year, but before that there has been a whole host of beauty brands virtually impossible to get in New Zealand.
The opening was conveniently in the school holidays (I see what you did there, Mecca) and there were folks queuing practically around the block, so it’s not just me that was excited. I ducked away from work over the lunch break (an extended lunch break, okay) to check out the store—and there’s lots to be excited about.
I don’t do ‘new in’ posts very often. I think they’re a bit boring, frankly, and don’t give me much opportunity to say anything other than ‘this is a new thing a brand sent me that you can spend money on’.
I also don’t write about body care very often, largely because I don’t use it. The hairs on my legs are about 2cm long and my legs haven’t seen moisturiser in probably a year, at least. I’m lazy. I hate taking baths (and I’ve talked about this enough that Lush took me off their PR list).
When it comes to The Body Shop*, however, it’s a little bit different. I love The Body Shop. We go way back—to the time I was four or five and accidentally stole a gift tag from the counter because I thought it was free, and Mum discovered it after we’d left the shop and made me take it back. It’s not all bad memories, though. The Body Shop used to be full of tiny squishy dissolving bath beads in every scent (before I decided I hated baths) and I’d get to pick a little paper bag of them on special occasions. It’s also the perfect destination for difficult Christmas gifts, because the products are genuinely nice, they’re ethically-minded and strike a good balance of affordability and luxury.
It’s a little alarming to be talking about Christmas in October, but it’s coming, so I really have no choice.
My hair is usually about 30% dry shampoo, and until recently in New Zealand the dry shampoo availability has been limited to Batiste and some random K-Mart brand. I’ve been dying to get my hands on COLAB dry shampoo forever—in part because it’s Ruth Crilly‘s brand, and in part because it’s meant to be great.
I begged Lena to bring me back a can from Australia, and I’d barely had time to use it before I got possibly the most exciting PR email I’ve had for a while: that COLAB dry shampoo is coming to New Zealand! We’re getting the Sheer and Invisible formula, as well as the Extreme Volume one, in the London, New York and Monaco fragrances. I haven’t spotted it in stores yet, but it’s meant to be in select pharmacies and department stores (for $18ish?)
I had my wisdom teeth removed on Wednesday. All four of the fuckers, all impacted. It’s the first time I’ve ever had to go to hospital for anything, and the first time I had general anaesthetic. To say I was nervous is an understatement of stupid proportions. It went fine, of course, because modern medicine is incredible (seriously, anaesthetic is fascinating! They can literally turn your body off for half an hour and then you wake up FINE how does it work)
I never write about sales and wishlists anymore because I don’t want to encourage rampant consumerism but the New Zealand Sephora site has 15% off everything at the moment so I figured I’d point you to some bargains. Sephora.nz is not quite as generous as the OG Sephora.com when it comes to discounts and freebies, so having 15% off is nothing to turn up your nose at. 15% is the highest we’d ever have on prestige cosmetics at Farmers when I worked there, so it’s probably the best you can do.
So that being said, here’s what I’d pick up if I were you (and if I were myself, for some of these!)
Sometimes being a blogger means you get to do some pretty special things, and last week was one of those times. MAC are relaunching their makeup services on counters here in New Zealand, and to celebrate they hosted MAC Makeup Parties simultaneously at MAC counters across the country. And I was lucky enough to co-host the Wellington party! MAC invited me to invite five of my friends to join me for 90 minutes of makeup fun.
This is going to be a picture-heavy post, just FYI if you’re on your phone on mobile data or anything!
It has been a bitch of a week, so to say I needed and deserved a massage today is an understatement. I tend to drop in to The Rub on Willis Street to have someone dig around in my shoulders and back when my tension gets too bad (or when I can spare thirty dollars) but that doesn’t compare to a full spa treatment experience. I’ve never been to a spa attached to a hotel before – I think I was worried they’d be a bit hoky, like most restaurants attached to hotels, but Bodyhaven Spa at the Amora was the complete opposite. Seriously, I have never felt more relaxed in my life. Driving home afterwards was almost dangerous because of how relaxed I was.
I haven’t written a lot here over the past few months, for a bunch of reasons. One of them, I’ll be honest, is because if I’m deciding between whether to write something for my own blog or for xoVain (where I get paid), I’ll pick the latter. At the moment my income is pretty inadequate and my partner is looking for work, so every little bit helps.
Related to that, I guess, is that I haven’t had as much money to spend on products for myself, and I don’t want to fall back on writing exclusively about PR samples. With that in mind, the next few posts on Hyacinth Girl will be good old-fashioned product reviews, of things I’ve bought and am into and want to rave about. While you wait for those, however, I’d suggest having a read of xoVain 💖
On a particularly bad day last month I arrived home to find a box containing the Sigma Fall 2015 collection on my doorstep (short of the lipsticks, which I haven’t swatched yet, sorry ’bout it). I’ve never used Sigma makeup before – or their brushes, really, aside from feeling them when I visited the Beauty Bliss pop-up store and then immediately coveting them. I know people are hesitant to buy makeup from brands that are primarily sold online, because the experience of seeing the product in person is so important to making the decision to buy. With that in mind, here is a swatch-heavy post with thorough reviews of each product, so hopefully you can make an informed decision. I’m no Temptalia, but this was fun to put together, so whatever. The range launches properly in a couple of days!
Remember how I said I had heaps of new shit to show you guys? This is that post. Lots of new makeup and skincare to talk about – some gifted, some purchased by my very own self. I’m going to dive right in to some quick reviews to avoid taking up too much of your time. Let’s go.