Sunday, 27 October 2013

ZOMBIE! (For Her), a Halloween themed fragrance from Demeter

It's not every day that a perfume claims to smell like something died. I'll say there's a fair few fragrances out there that maybe do fill that niche, but I'd be surprised if I find any (apart from Demeter's Zombie for Her) actually set out to achieve that dramatic ideal.

This perfume first became a part of Demeter's range last year and I was desperate to get my hands on it, but being UK based, it is almost impossible to get hold of Demeter, let alone limited edition Demeter.

I was really excited when I heard that they were bringing the Zombie perfumes (they also do a Zombie for Him) back for Halloween this year. As I was expecting a parcel from the US anyway, I thought I would put in a little request to try this.

So what does it smell like? I have to admit that I was intrigued to find out. The Demeter website states:

"Think forest floor.  Zombie for Her is a combination of dried leaves, mushrooms, mildew, moss and earth"

I have to disagree here. The only note I can sense from this description is mildew, but that is a back of the throat 'has something gone passed it's best?' fleeting glimpse. Instead I found that the overwhelming top note is a slightly floral chemical smell. To be fair my first instinct says 'embalming fluids' which of course is perfect for the theme. Going back to my first comments on this post, I will say that there is definitely an air of death about Zombie for Her. Now I'm not saying that this is a bad thing, after all, that's what you have to expect when you set out to buy a perfume that smells of Zombie. However, on closer thought, this won't be one that I'm wearing very often, in fact I'll admit that it probably won't be worn at all. However, I completely and utterly recommend that anyone who gets the chance grabs this one to give it a smell, after all, when do you get to smell a Zombie?

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Berner XZ Sea Buckthorn hair repair oil

Sea Buckthorn is found in a variety of natural bath and beauty products. It is high in vitamin C, vitamin E, and Amino and Fatty Acids and whilst it doesn't make great eating, you've got a great ingredient for looking after skin and hair.

 XZ is a Finnish supermarket brand and as I couldn't find it for sale anywhere with English translation, I would say that it isn't usually exported. Considering the quality of the XZ hair products that Maarit in Finland sent me I'm really surprised by this. I would imagine that they would sell really well across Europe.

Maarit wrote a little note with the instructions on for me which stated that this is a pre wash treatment. Therefore I combed it through my hair about ten minutes before I got in the bath.

It feels like a really good quality pressed olive oil in consistency and has a clean, slightly fruity, fresh smell. It is quite runny so although the applicator is shaped like a hair dye applicator, I found it better to squirt it into my hands and then work it through my hair.

 I also used it on my daughter's hair. The two of us have quite different hair types but this oil made both of our hair really soft and shiny. On my daughter's hair it had the better efficiency. When I brush and plait her hair the day after I have treated it with the XZ it is noticeably stronger and shinier. 

I'm already 50% through this bottle and I'm starting to feel that 'I hope it doesn't run out' panic that you get when you know you are using something that is really effective.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Elvira Black Roses perfume, another great offering from Demeter

I'm not sure how many people remember Elvira, Mistress of the Dark... The 1980s movie is a bit of a classic but I'm not sure it's one that ever had more than a cult appeal. That's a shame, because Elvira and her rock mullet were pretty damn cool.

How excited was I when I found out that Demeter had brought out three limited edition Elvira fragrances? I chose the dramatic sounding Black Roses and I'm pleased that I did.

It's a really unique smell with top notes of rose and redcurrant and undertones of Patchouli, Amber, and Vetivert. On first spray it's unnervingly sweet and not unlike the smell of dry ice when it comes out at you from the dancefloor. I'd say that fitted in with the 80s Elvira image pretty well. Thankfully, the dry ice overtones wear off fairly quickly leaving a much spicier and muskier fragrance which is still pretty sweet. If I closed my eyes and tried to imaging what the mistress of the dark would smell like, I'd probably come up with something similar.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Bison Baby Pink BB Cream

Anything that tries to give a grown woman a face as soft and cute as a baby's is well on it's way to an overpromise. Yet, the fact that the Bison Baby Pink Mineral BB Cream is brave enough to try is impressive in itself. Besides, take a look at the outer packaging. How can you resist that little pudgy smile?

This BB cream suggests it can be used as a base, concealer, foundation, and finishing powder and will give you a natural looking skin. To be fair, it does a pretty good job of all those things.
 It's a fairly thick formula and the colour, as you can see, is lovely and light. It's a little bit yellow toned straight from the pot but you can see it blends in very well. Of course, it's also worth mentioning here that I have very pink undertones.

The coverage is impressive, as you would imagine from a BB cream that aims to replace foundation, powder, and concealer. The photo above is just the Bison Baby Pink and I can safely say that it has taken all of the red out of my skin and hidden my undereye darkness completely. I can honestly say that it doesn't need either powder or concealer, but this does mean that it has a slight cakey effect where my skin is slightly drier.

The photograph above is the finished look and you can see that once I've added a little contour and put some of the pinkness back into my cheeks, it's a pretty flawless finish. The yellow tinge has almost completely disappeared once it's been worked into my skin. I'll be honest, my skin looks as less like a baby's as it is possible to look, instead it's given me more of a porcelein doll finish, but that is in no way a bad thing. 

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Is that a chubby stick I spy? Not at all, it's Lumene Raspberry Miracle Lip Sorbet

There are times when it seems as though every brand is bringing out similar products. The Clinique Chubby Sticks were a big hit and over the last year we've seen countless dupes. That doesn't, however, mean that I'm 'over' them. Oh no; not in the slightest. For this reason, I was ecstatic to hear that Finnish brand Lumene had their own version too.

I'll be honest, although I enjoy the Chubby Sticks, in my opinion they aren't quite as moisturising as they could be. The Lumene Raspberry Miracle Lip Sorbets on the other hand... well... they are very moisturising. They have the consistancy of a glossy lip balm, with the staying power of a good lipstick.

 The colours I chose were Blooming Meadow and Full of Berries. That's Full of Berries on the left, and Blooming Meadow on the right.

Full of Berries is a strong, vibrant red shade. As you can see from the photograph it doesn't go on as smoothly as it could do, but do not in any way allow this to put you off. This is the most flattering red shade that I own (and believe me I own a LOT), and because of the consistancy it fades evenly too. It's pretty long wearing for such a glossy colour too.

Blooming Meadow (how beautiful is that name for a lip product?) is a light barely there pink. It's not so barely there that it, for want of a better term, isn't there at all. It is however very subtle. I found this even more moisturising than Full of Berries and it lasts even longer too. I've been rocking the smoky eye look lately and Blooming Meadow is the perfect lip companion.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

A mini haul of Demeter purse sprays

There's just something about the Demeter Fragrance Library that keeps me running back and back. A very kind friend of mine in the US forward shipped a small order for me and these arrived last week.

The purse sprays are the perfect size for trialling. Demeter have a teeny tiny 'splash' size but I much prefer to buy them slightly larger, just in case I fall utterly in love with a fragrance and the small one just isn't enough.

This time round I chose Thunderstorm, Iced Berries, and Paperback.

Thunderstorm is described as that smell just before a thunderstorm arrives; that expectancy in the air. And truly, it does smell just like that. It's also one of the longer lasting Demeter fragrances. Sadly, it's not quite for me though as it's a bit too 'green' and watery smelling.

Iced Berries is described as a 'crisp and cool blend of Raspberries, Blueberries, and Blackberries with a touch of spice'. It sounds really American but in actuality it reminds me of Scandinavian cooking, which as you can imagine makes it a big hit with me. It's one I will be carrying around and using up fast.

Paperback is supposed to smell like those dusty old books sitting in on the shelf. Of course it doesn't smell exactly like that, but it does remind you of that (after all, you probably don't want to actually smell like old paper). This is utterly amazing, deep and musky, slightly incense smoky,and with a hint of floral in the form of violet and freesia. This is as close to a signature fragrance as I'm likely to get considering that I am a pagan and a writer. What can I say? I think I should smell of incense and books!