Beauty empties: May & June 2017

Anastasia Beverley Hills Brow Whiz (Graphite): I’ve never done my brows or had a brow product before, so I just went with the cult favourite. I found this really easy to use in terms of creating shape and filling in sparse areas. The colour is also a great match for black hair. I don’t use the spooly though, so half the product and space is wasted, which is a shame. I’m already using my second one.

Kat Von D Tattoo Liner (Trooper): I know this is also a cult favourite, but I thought it was only okay and definitely inferior to my holy grail liquid eyeliners. I felt the ink was not black or pigmented enough, and lost more pigment pretty quickly, making the ink unpleasant and watery. It was also rather troublesome to remove with my usual oil makeup removing cleanser, so all in all not winning in any categories.

Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner (Intense Black): Another cult favourite and again clearly inferior to my usual two liquid eyeliners. The formula was better than the KVD one, as the pigment was indeed an intense black. It takes a more seconds to dry than I’m used to, which proved quite problematic several times as I ended up with it all over my eyelid after accidentally blinking (I’ve never had this problem with any other liquid liners previously). The most annoying thing though: THE FELT TIP WAS A NIGHTMARE. The felt tip was unforgiving, thick, hard to draw with on the delicate eye area, and the rigidity of the tip was also really harsh on the skin around the eyes and made it very imprecise. I absolutely hated using it and my eyeliner was perpetually messy. Based on this tip, I absolutely hated this. It’s also really difficult to completely remove, so it is definitely “stay all day”.

Kracie Naive Facial Cleanser (Peach): I’ve been using this range for years and years. The most recent time I stocked up, the packaging had changed. I’m not sure if I’m imagining that the formula feels a bit less creamy and foamy than before… nonetheless I still like it.

MISSHA M Signature Real Complete BB Cream (23): This was actually my favourite BB cream and I used this all the time during uni before I landed on my favourite foundation. So I dug it out to finish this year. The texture of this is wonderful and creamy, and blends amazingly into the skin, smoothing pores and evening skin tone while leaving a slightly dewy and very natural finish. The coverage is right up there with foundations – maybe medium-ish. The only thing I didn’t like is the white-grey undertone, so I always used a quarter of a warmer and darker foundation to help with the colour.

Nuxe Reve de Miel Hand and Nail Cream: Nothing bad about this cream, but it wasn’t that memorable. I’ve used better hand creams that felt better.

Mario Badescu Hyaluronic Day Cream: I got this and a MD night cream at the same time (for some reason I finished the night cream a few weeks later). I loved this day cream as it was the perfect texture and felt so lovely. My only complaint is that (despite using for less than the 12-month-open sign) in the last few weeks, I noticed the remaining cream seemed to have split or something?! It got a bit grainy and oily…?! I’m puzzled and have never experienced this before…

Bare Minerals Mineral Veil (Original): I’m not sure why I keep buying other setting powders, because every time I return to this, I remember how incredible it is. This is the only powder that keeps my T-zone not-oily all day. I’m amazed every time I used this. It’s a bit of a faff to use though, since I’m not a fan of the powders where you tap product out of a small hole into the lid and I find it hard to control. Nonetheless I have repurchased this!

Food lately: May & June 2017

Caballa Ahumada: House cold smoked Spanish mackerel with pine nut gazpacho sorbet (Movida Bar de Tapas, Melbourne CBD)

This was entirely not something I would have ordered. I can’t put my finger on it but in one mouthful, it was a beautiful combination of flavour, texture and contrasting temperature. The sorbet was definitely an inventive and unexpected twist. So yum!

Eggs and Waffle Benedict: Smoked ham and cheddar waffle, poached eggs, chipotle hollandaise (Seven Seeds, Carlton)

Sounds simple and homely on paper, but the amount of flavour packed into those waffles and hollandaise made it incredible. One of my favourite brunch dishes!




Regular and deluxe sushi boxes from Omakase menu (Kisume, Melbourne CBD)

A glorious amount of sushi for six people. The seafood was really fresh and the variety of preparations was wonderful.

Beauty Empties: March & April 2017

Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation (I20 & I40): This one is my HG foundation, and unfortunately (devastatingly, really) discontinued. I typically mix 2-3 parts of the lighter shade to 1 part of the darker shade depending on the season and how light or dark I am. I could go with I20 in winters. I used up one of each shade the other month. I only have two I20 and one I40 left (eep). I hate looking for new foundations but I will really have to get onto it soon. I love the compact, clean packaging and unlike a pump or tube, you can get every last drop out. I’ve rambled before about how I love the liquid formula and finish. This foundation is amazing! I talked about this previously in an empties post.

Burt’s Bees Pink Grapefruit Refreshing Lip Balm: This is my ideal lip balm texture. I’m struggling to find alternatives to Burt’s Bees since they’re no longer cruelty free.

Fairy Drops Scandal Queen Waterproof Mascara: I love this mascara and this was my second tube after a few years. It’s brilliant for short Asian lashes – it holds shape, lengthens like woah, and adds some volume. The lengthening fibres can get out of hand sometimes and I have to carefully remove some, haha. It comes off fine with my usual makeup remover oil, but won’t smudge at all during the day.

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara: I received a deluxe sample from Mecca (with the same wand as the full size). The formula was too heavy for my measly lashes, and the curls drooped immediately under the weight. It was also a bit clumpy. I wasn’t a fan, despite all the hype.

Food lately: March & April 2017

Long time no blog! I knew it would be difficult, but full time Masters and work is kicking my butt. I’m staying afloat better than I thought, though.

Actually I didn’t have any outstanding food dishes from March, so these are all really from April.

KFC: Kentucky Fried Cauliflower (Dexter, Preston)

The first time we naively rocked up to this establishment, we were told the next table was available at 9pm. We left, of course. For the next visit, I had to book three weeks ahead (because I also wanted a table, not bar seating). We rarely go to places that need booking far in advance, and if it’s that popular, we’re more used to having to line up/go early since “cool Melbourne” is all about “no bookings”. I was expecting great things, but also prepared for disappointment, because well… case in point: Chin Chin. I was blown away though, especially by our starters. The batter was so addictive and perfectly fried (I could eat it all day…). I especially loved that the cauliflowers (one of my favourite foods, btw) were in large chunks and not at all disguised or hidden by the batter.

Hot meat doughnut (Dexter, Preston)

For the sake of this post, I actually decided the KFC was my favourite dish of the night. But these meat doughnuts still deserve mention. The only thing we both hated was the sugar. I thought it was perfect enough (especially the dough) without having to be so overtly “doughnut-y” with all the sugar. The meat inside was so moist and packed with flavour. I can see these being a real signature menu item.

(I can’t find the name of this anywhere, but I think it was) Beef short ribs tacos with corn, chilli and pineapple salsa, pomegranate, yoghurt and lime (Left Field, Carnegie)

These were the best brunch tacos I’ve ever had! They were great sizes and had the perfect ratio of tortilla to filling. The filling was also quite delicate with a lot of elements. It had everything I love about a balanced dish – contrasting textural elements (smooth yoghurt and crunch from the pomegranate) and flavours (acidity, sweetness, richness, smokiness). I was quite impressed.

Bulgogi K-quesadilla (Chimac Plus, Abbotsford)

I’ve visited the original Chimac before and the menu is the same, I think. They do very good Korean fried chicken and Korean-Mexican fusion. I don’t think I’ve had the K-quesadilla before. The quesadilla was really well toasted and nothing fell out or came apart (I loved that, haha). It had a nice crunch too. Something about this fusion worked really well. The cheese was not too strong but complemented the subtle flavours of the bulgogi, and gosh those jalapenos were spicy.

Food Lately: February 2017

Cheesy Puds: Piped with prosciutto goats cheese & black olive goats cheese (Hercules Morse Kitchen + Bar, South Melbourne)

It was my first time ordering the cheesy puds from Hercules Morse. They were, once again, perfect little morsels. I loved the flavour combinations with the creamy and tangy goats cheese. I couldn’t decide on a favourite!

Mac ‘n’ cheese croquette (Kitty Burns, Abbotsford)

This was just a side I wanted to order. But it was pretty epic and delicious. Look at how perfect the shape is! It was wonderfully crispy, and the mac n cheese inside had a great consistency and flavour. The inside kept its integrity really well. How can you say no to this croquette? Yum.

Matcha soft serve (Yokozuna, Chadstone)

Perhaps unexpectedly, I still think that the best matcha soft serve in Melbourne is from all the restaurants that have this one particular machine. The soft serve texture and flavour is spot on, and it’s a fraction of the cost of the fancy places (that don’t even taste better). You just can’t beat this soft serve.

Chives dumplings (Paradai II Thai, Carnegie)

These were sooo good! They came out piping hot, and the skin was super crispy while the filling of chives was very flavoursome. I was pleasantly surprised that it was all chives (without excessive binding agents and fillers). These were winning starters!