Tuesday, September 10, 2013

What's in my shower?

When searching the hidden depths of the YouTube beauty community you may stumble across a tag video of sorts known as "What's In My Shower".  This video allows curious people like myself some insight into what said YouTuber uses in their shower.

Since I'm sure I'm not the only nosy person out there I thought I would film a little tour of my own shower. This will give you a fair idea of what makes up my current skincare and haircare routine.

Here are the products you can currently find in my shower:
Michael Todd True Organics Walnut Grapefruit Scrub
Soap & Glory The Breakfast Scrub
Lush Ro's Argan Body Conditioner
Palmolive Body Butter Shower Gel Luscious Mango
Bath and Body Works Signature Fragrance Collection Shower Gel Pink Chiffon (purchased from eBay)
Philosophy Coconut Frosting Shower Gel
TRESemme Deep Cleansing Shampoo
De Lorenzo Control Revive Conditioner
Clairol Herbal Essence Classic Normal Shampoo
Clairol Herbal Essence Classic Normal Conditioner
Gillette Venus Disposable Razor
Models Prefer Wide-tooth Comb
White loofah
Mario Badescu Glycolic Foaming Cleanser
Michael Todd True Organics Skin Defender AHA Creme Facial Cleanser
La Roche-Posay Effaclar Foaming Gel
Michael Todd True Organics Tropical Fruit Enzyme Exfoliant Scrub
Herbal Essences Honey I'm Strong Shampoo
Herbal Essences Honey I'm Strong Conditioner

That's a total of 19 products! Can you beat that? I am searching for the ultimate in-shower product hoarder so I know I'm not the only one who has way too many products in their shower :)

I would love to hear what's currently hiding out in your shower! Any products I just have to try?

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Cute finds! #1

During those times when I feel the need to blow off the world and my responsibilities for a minute or two, I often "window shop" the web. I thought it would be cool to let you know about some of the cute things I come across and if you enjoy it, then maybe I can share my shopping addiction on a regular basis :)

1. Printed Mini My Little Pony iPad Case

Unicorns + technology + sparkles + pink = adorable (and right up my alley!). Shame I don't have an iPad Mini....

Check it out here.

2. Camera Bank

Who wouldn't want a funky and decorative way to store all your loose change (maybe it will help me to start saving for that designer handbag...). Urban Outfitters has some great homewares for those of you who are eclectic at heart.

Check it out here.

3. Cream Bow Palmwarmers

The bows on these "palmwarmers" (just found out that was a thing) add just the right touch of adorableness while still allowing me to be able to use my iPhone while wearing them. Score!

Check it out here.

4. STOCKHOLM Swivel easy chair

I fell instantly in love with this new chair from Ikea (am I the only one who gets ridiculously excited when the new Ikea catalog is released? Mine came in the mail yesterday). The best bit is that it swivels! I'm thinking about getting it in the beige for my room, though I love the yellow. It looks like sunshine in a chair.

Check it out here.

5. Jo Malone Nectarine Blossom & Honey Cologne

This online lust actually turned into a sneaky offline purchase earlier this week. I had such a good shopping experience that I'm going to blog about it. Look out for a delicious smelling post coming soon!

Check it out here.

What cute finds have you seen this week?

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Beating the blues :(

On my YouTube channel I get loads of comments about my "positive personality", my "cheerful nature", my "sunny disposition" or the like. It may seem like I am this perpetually happy person who rides a unicorn through a field of lollipops and rainbows day in and day out, but the truth of the matter is I have my bad days just like everyone else. I probably have a lot more of them than you think.

I tend to not film on those kind of days because the last thing I want to do is put out bad vibes into the universe, but they happen and I have to deal with them they do.

I was recently asked to do a video about this very topic but I decided a blog post might work instead, so here are a few FUN ways I deal with stress and over all feelings of negativity.

1. Feel the music.

For me music is an ultimate mood-changer. I can be feeling just blah one minute then my favourite song comes on and all of a sudden I am dancing around the room, singing at the top of my lungs like a lunatic (cue extreme embarrassment if this happens while grocery shopping....). I recommend anytime you find a song that brings an instant smile to your face add it to a playlist. That way when you're feeling not so smiley, you know exactly what to listen to.

My Mum thinks listening to Taylor Swift is like therapy.

2. Bake cupcakes, or cookies, or both.

Now don't just go out and buy a cupcake you actually have to make it. The process can be very calming and by thinking about what you are doing, you are less likely to be thinking about whatever was making you frown. Plus at the end of the whole process you are left with a batch of deliciously sweet goodness that is guaranteed to chase away the blues. Cookies work too!

Cute owl cupcakes I made last year.
Betty Crocker Milk Chocolate Chunk Cookies are the best!

3. Listen to babies laugh.

It may sound a little creepy but it's actually very therapeutic. There is something about the innate innocence of a child's laughter that just helps you remember simpler, happier times. Now if you don't have one of your own you can type "babies laughing" into the YouTude search engine and you'll find a plethora of giggling littles. I dare you not to smile when watching this!


4. Watch a Disney movie.

Happy endings only are allowed here. Disney movies have a special way of promoting happiness. It might be something to do with childhood nostalgia they incite or maybe it's the catchy tunes. Whatever it is, forget that you've kissed one too many frogs and instead concentrate on creating your own happily ever after.

Popcorn makes all movies better!

5. Go for a ride.

It's a well known fact that exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don't shoot their husbands, they don't. If I'm feeling down a nice bike ride in the sunshine can be just what I need to clear my head. I'll often ride to a nearby park, maybe take a swing on the swing set and after all is said and done, I usually feel better.

My yellow vintage bike.

Remember breathing is not just important, it's necessary. So when it all gets to be a bit too much stop, breathe, then work out how you're going to deal.

Also, don't underestimate the power of taking a little bit of time just for you (even if you have to schedule it into your diary), it can make a world of difference.

How do you deal with a stressful or bad day? 

P.S. When in doubt, Ryan Gosling makes everything better ;)

Your brushes have never been so clean

It may seem a little odd for me to rave about a makeup brush cleanser given how I loathe to clean my brushes, but this product is so good, it deserves a little blog love.

It's called Detergent for Puff and Sponge and you get it from a Japanese store called Daiso (pronounced die-so). Coming in at $2.80 here in Australia, it will be the best loose change you've spent in a long time (or if your like me it will be $11.20 since I bought four in one go).

Stocking up!

I'm not quite sure what special powers this light pink liquid holds, but my small brushes are clean in seconds, white brushes look pristine and there's a new-brush feeling all round. I was particularly impressed with how nice my Real Techniques brushes scrubbed up. After a bath in this stuff, they felt fluffy and brand-new.

Don't even get me started on how my Sigma Kabuki brushes fared. I spent a good 10 minutes on each, working the foundation residue out of the brush. Product just kept on coming out, which tells me that they were probably never getting very clean with my past shampoo efforts.

My cleaning time has been cut in half which is great when you have so many brushes.

If you're a Beauty Blender user like myself, the Detergent for Puff and Sponge will work wonders on it as well. I definitely wouldn't fork out all that money for the Beauty Blender Blendercleanser (that's a mouthful) when you have this option. Mine hasn't been this pink since it was unused.

After reading numerous blog posts on this much hyped product, some people noted that it was a bit harsh for natural (animal) hair brushes (especially if you wash your brushes quite frequently). To that I would say dilute the cleanser with some water (think 10% cleanser to 90% water - don't worry it still cleans!) before applying to the brush or only use this product on them intermittently when you need a deeper clean. If you have really delicate brushes and you're concerned about how they will be effected, then maybe skip this product on them. 

I could go on and on but I won't. I will however suggest that you go out and try it for yourself, I think you will be pleasantly surprised with the results. I know I won't be without this in my cleaning regime again!

You can find a list of Daiso store locations in Australia here, but my Shopping Centre insider information tells me that there will be more stores opening up very soon (there are stores in various locations around the world too). I have also been told that you can find this product in some Dollar King stores (not verified) as well as on Amazon and eBay.

What do you use to clean your makeup brushes?

Friday, August 9, 2013

A magical oil for your face?

I developed oily skin when I started going through puberty. Some people get boobs and hips, I got oily skin, oily hair and acne (as well as the boobs and hips). The thing is when I finished the pubescent stage of my life the oiliness decided to stay with me.

As an "oily skinned" girl the thought of putting more oil onto my skin seemed abhorrent, that is until I discovered rosehip oil (or rose hip oil depending on who you ask).

Rosehip oil may be an oil but it behaves a bit like a serum. It's a 'dry' oil that is absorbed into the skin quite quickly. The oil is made from the bud of a rose, so don't expect it to smell pretty - actually it smells quite unpretty to me, but you can work around it.

Personally I have been mixing a few of drops into my nightly moisturiser and have been pleasantly surprised with the results.

While I sleep (and dream of Jimmy Choos and lipstick) it does it's thing. My skin is less dehydrated - no more random dry patches that my foundation used to love to cling to and look horrible. The texture or the "smoothness" of my skin seems to have improved too!

According to the interwebs "using rosehip oil on the skin appears to stimulate the production of new and healthy cells. Its antioxidant and anti-microbial properties can minimise the growth of bacteria so as to avoid different types of breakouts (pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, etc.). When applied to scarred skin, the supporters of this oil claim that it repairs tissues so that the damaged cells are broken down and replaced with new cells."

What benefits can you expect to see from this wonderful, mystical, magical oil? Well, according the numerous articles I've read, there is a lot, but here is a few:
  • Its has been proven effective in repairing acne scars as well as other forms of scars and skin blemishes. Pop this baby on every night and you can expect to see marks and scars become less prominent in time.
  • It contains vitamin A which is great for balancing oily skin (yes please!).
  • It can aid in lightening hyper pigmentation and evening out skin tone. Some people say it even gives your skin a 'glow'.
  • It will help to keep your skin firm and bouncy as well as reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles (great for those you looking to slow the aging process!) 
In other words, it's really good stuff!
The best thing about rosehip oil is that it is natural and therefore shouldn't contain any nasty, skin-harming chemicals. It is loaded with vitamins and antioxidants which, if they are doing their job correctly, can help in keeping the skin smooth, healthy and young-looking - who wouldn't want that?

To make sure that you are getting the true benefits of this product I would recommend purchasing one that is certified organic. You can find rosehip oil in health and beauty stores as well as pharmacies for anywhere between $15-$50. Check out some of these brands:


I am going to continue use this raved about product to see if my skin reaps the aforementioned benefits. I am always a little bit skeptical about "the hype" but so far so good.

Let me know if you have tried rosehip oil. What was your experience? See any fantastic results?


For the love of books

It's no secret that I love reading. I do. I have always loved it, ever since I was a little girl, but I really got into it again after I graduated from high school. All of a sudden I no longer HAD to read books and it was then that I decided I wanted to. Can you see how I have a problem with being told what to do?

Now I read anywhere between one to four books a week depending on how busy I am and their length. 

What do I like to read? Well for a start I like books with happy endings. Not happy-sad endings (I'm talking to you Mr Sparks*), but happy-happy endings. Where there may be some hurt, there may be some confusion, there may be some overall crappy situations, but in the end the right guy gets the right girl (the "right" is important), and they live happily ever after in their perfect little world.

My reading ranges from young adult, to new adult, to just plain adult. Usually romance is involved in some form, and while I love contemporary books that I can relate to, I don't mind the odd hot vampire/werewolf/angel/nephilim/warlock thrown in.
I attribute much of my reading addiction to a few specific authors. Firstly, the lovely Stephenie Myer. Say what you will about the Twilight books - love them, hate them, it doesn't matter - they got a whole generation reading again and for that we should be thankful.

Personally, I loved the story of Bella and Edward and from that went on to read a tonne of "Vampire" books, many of which I enjoyed immensely.

Rachel Gibson was my first introduction to adult romance novels. I have read and loved all her books bar one - 'Daisy's Back in Town' (ask me why and maybe I'll tell you one day). Once I discovered her books, I really developed a love for the genre. It was my escape, my way of passing the time when I no longer had hours of homework to do at night.

I particularly enjoy the fact that even though her books are stand-alone, they are often set in the same places and therefore make reference to past characters. It's nice knowing that the characters you once fell in love with are still living happily. It gives the stories depth.

Some of my favourite Rachel Gibson books

My most recent discovery in the world of books is the 'new adult' category, particularly from self-published/indie authors. While I still love the tactile feel of holding a "real" book in my hands, I'm officially addicted to eBooks. They are just so convenient! Plus it means I can go book shopping at 1:00am if the mood strikes me (thank you Amazon!). Abbi Glines, Colleen Hoover and Jessica Park are three authors that cemented this unhealthy addiction but there are so many others that I love.

Abbi Glines and I at her book signing in Sydney
These books also introduced me the concept of "book boyfriends" which I think is hilarious - but honestly if any one of these guys actually existed, well maybe then I wouldn't be single.

I am always, ALWAYS, looking for new book recommendations so I would love it if you would share some of your favourite authors or books with me! Also, tell me who your "book boyfriend" would be :)

*That was referring to author Nicholas Sparks if you didn't get the reference. He, like Shonda Rhimes (creator and head writer of Grey's Anatomy), wouldn't know a happy-happy ending if it but them on the bum. Both are amazingly talented though!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Add blogger to my list!


People (that unknown but ever present entity that seem to say and do stuff) have always made blogging seem easy to me. I mean how hard can it be. You sign up to one of the various free blogging sites and just start typing... and yet I have never done it. I wanted to, but I haven't. 

You see it's actually not that easy. You have wrestle with backgrounds and headers, gadgets and widgets - and don't even get me started on HTML code. This is all before you even start typing. And then of course you have to know what you want to write about.

So why pray tell am I doing this? Well a couple of years back I entered into a wondrous world called YouTube. Since then I have been slowly - EVER SO SLOWLY - growing my channel, mainly making video about beauty and fashion with some book recommendations and vlogs thrown in for good measure. I really enjoy it and the more I do it, the more I grow to love all things beauty.

Unfortunately life sometimes gets in the way of a good thing and I don't get to film as much as I would like. I have a full-time job (not beauty related at all) and have to spend a fair amount of time traveling to and from work. There are only so many hours in the day, and I love sleep like I love chocolate, so I need something else that I can do that allows me to share my various passions with other people, but is a little bit more flexible.

That's where blogging comes in.

I have no idea how this will go (I may completely suck at it) but if I only did things I was sure I was going to be good at, well the only thing I would do is sleep.

So this is my first post, my first foray into blogging if you will. I can already see that I'm going to talk to much in blogs as I do in videos, but I hope you will forgive the run-along sentences and over use of adjectives such as SUPERDUPER and REALLY REALLY.

I will now be Rachael: 
Daughter; Older Sister; Friend; Retail Delivery Coordinator (random work title - I know); Vlogger; Beauty Enthusiast; Music Lover, Chocolate Eater; Tech Geek, Avid Reader; Secret Keeper; Day Dreamer;

and you can add Blogger to that list.