Monday, 28 December 2015

9 Most Popular Posts in 2015

As 2015 draws to a close it's good to look back over the year that was to reminisce about the highs and lows, the lessons learnt and things to build on for next year.

Highlights for me included attending several general blogger and specific beauty blogger events. I loved meeting other bloggers in real life, people as passionate about beauty and blogging as me, people who understand the urge to photograph products before opening and using them! Lol! 

Looking back over my blog statistics for the past 12 months these were the 9 most popular posts on Fabulous and Fun Life as voted by the number of views they received from you.


Top 9 Most Popular Posts on Fabulous and Fun Life in 2015







2. Ageless Beauty - The Parcel - Beauty Box Subscription Review August 2015 

Drum roll ..... and the clear winner as the most popular post on Fabulous and Fun Life in 2015 was ...

1. Rimmel Oh My Gloss! Swatches and Review June 2015

Giveaways and Rimmel lip product posts were clear trends in my 2015 most popular posts! Expect to see more of these in 2016!

In addition to these above posts, the posts I most enjoyed writing and then interacting with you on were the Monday Makeup Madness link up party posts that I started back in April 2015. I feel privileged to have hosted such a supportive group of beauty bloggers each week. I feel like we have all become good blogging buddies and it is so lovely to catch up with you all via the link up each week. I've been lucky to meet a couple of you in real life, and I look forward to "meeting" each of you online every week, reading about what products you're all currently loving and using! I hope you're all enjoying some relaxing down time currently and I'll "see" you online again soon I hope!

What would you like to see more of on Fabulous and Fun Life blog in 2016?

xxx
Ingrid.

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Monday, 21 December 2015

Easiest Last Minute Christmas Gift Shopping Ever! Colour Theory

Every year, two to three days before Christmas, when I'm feeling relieved that I have finished all my Christmas shopping AND wrapped everything, I suddenly discover that I am one gift short! It's happened to me so many times!

It's my worst nightmare as the crowded shopping malls and shopping complexes totally overwhelm me right before Christmas. I hate searching endlessly for a parking space and I hate crowds!

Luckily, I've found a solution to my annual dilemma! And I'm willing to share it with you! For easy last minute gifts when I'm trying to avoid the humongous shopping malls and it's too late to have any chance of receiving posted internet shopped items before the Christmas deadline, I go to my local Amcal Pharmacy at our relatively uncrowded local strip of shops. 

My favourite go-to gifts there are the Colour Theory range of cosmetics.

Colour Theory is an affordable cosmetics brand with over 100 products in its range covering face, cheeks, eyes, lips and nails. Prices start from $4, with no individual item priced over $10. Colour Theory is exclusive to Amcal, Amcal Max and Guardian Pharmacies. 

I have yet to meet a female who does not love receiving new lip products so these Jumbo Lip Crayons priced at $8 each are a perfect last minute gift! They are easy to apply, gliding onto the lips effortlessly and feel quite hydrating on the lips. The included beeswax and carnauba wax ingredients also add a lovely touch of gloss to the lips. 

This year as an extra Christmas treat I will also be popping these Colour Theory jumbo lip crayons into homemade Christmas bonbons for my female family members at our family Christmas dinner. Much better than the plastic rubbish, dad jokes and paper hats you find in the normal commercially bought Christmas bonbons!

Colour Theory Jumbo Lip Crayons

At Christmas in addition to the regular affordable cosmetics items, Colour Theory also has some beautifully packaged Christmas gifts such as the pictured Drop Dead Glamorous Lip Gloss Set priced at $12. What a perfect solution when you're not sure exactly what colour lip gloss you should buy for your friend!

Colour Theory Drop Dead Glamorous Lip Gloss Set

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Fabulous and Fun Life blog will now be taking a short two week holiday. However, I will be popping onto Instagram regularly as I can't go completely cold turkey! Not even at Christmas - hehe!

Do you have a last minute gift go-to solution? 
Or do you buy an extra gift or two just in case you need these?

xxx
Ingrid.

You can also find Fabulous and Fun Life on Instagram:


* The Colour Theory products photographed were kindly gifted to me for editorial consideration. Full disclosure policy here.

Monday, 14 December 2015

Marie Claire Ageless Parcel - Beauty Subscription Box Review

A while ago now I received the second Marie Claire Ageless Parcel beauty subscription box. It is full of amazing products all designed to help you look your best and combat the visible signs of ageing.


Marie Claire Ageless The Parcel


Marie Claire Ageless The Parcel Contents

As always with my subscription box reviews I have listed below the products I received in this Ageless Parcel in alphabetical order. I have quoted the product information that the Ageless Parcel provides on its information card in italic print and I've followed this with my comments in normal print. 

Alpha-H Liquid Gold
Full Size: 50 ml RRP: $30


Alpha H Liquid Gold

"Working like a one-step overnight facial, this award-winning resurfacing treatment utilises naturally derived glycolic acid and licorice extract, plus silk proteins, to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, pigmentation and sun damage."

This is the product I was most excited about receiving in this Marie Claire Ageless Parcel box. I have read so many wonderful reviews of this product, it will be good to try it for myself. Keep an eye out for a separate review after I have used it for a couple of weeks.

Dr Lewinn's Multi Moisture Balm
Deluxe Sample Size 15g. RRP: $9.95


Dr Lewinn's Multi Moisture Balm

"A multi-purpose balm containing a trio of nourishing and smoothing oils (almond, avocado and buriti), this can be used anywhere, anytime - as a daily moisture booster, hydrating mask, lip ointment, makeup remover and soothing hand cuticle balm."


Dr Lewinn's is a long time favourite brand of mine and I love multi-tasking products, so I'm very happy to see this product included in this box. This product is a convenient travel sized one that I will probably keep in my handbag for use when I'm out and about.

Jergens Shea Butter Deep Conditioning Moisturiser
Full Size: 250ml, $7.99


Jergens Shea Butter Deep Conditioning Moisturiser

"Dry, dull skin? With an illuminating blend, pure African shea butter, and a fast-absorbing formula, this deeply conditions and improves skin's moisture barrier. Plus, the light, fresh scent leaves skin delicately fragranced."

There was a Jergens Ultra Healing Body Moisturiser in the Summer Edit of the Marie Claire The Parcel which I loved. Thus I'm looking forward to using this Jergens product also. Jergens products are so affordably priced for the great quality they are. I hope this product is similar quality to other Jergens products I've used.

Narciso Rodriguez Narciso EDT
Deluxe Sample Size: 4ml. Value: $11.73
30ml RRP: $88


Narciso Rodriguez Narciso EDT

"From the master of minimalism comes this elegantly spare bottle. Inside, a blend of white peony, Bulgarian rose, musk, woods, black and white cedars, and vetiver notes, makes for a sensual fragrance that is both chic and timeless."

As many of you probably know I love fragrances, so this is another product that excites me!


ProPlenish Marine Collagen
Sample: 2 sachets. Value: $3.33
$49.95 for 30 x 3g sachets


ProPlenish Marine Collagen

"Made from 100 per cent marine collagen, this supplement is tasteless and blends clear in hot and cold drinks, and helps naturally replenish the collagen levels needed for a glowing complexion, healthy hair and strong nails."

This is a different type of beauty product to those I regularly use. It will be interesting to see how this supplement performs, although I am not expecting to see any visible differences after using only 2 sachets.

SK-II Facial Treatment Mask
$28 each


SK-II Facial Treatment Mask

"Beloved by beauty insiders and celebrities alike, this moisture-boosting sheet mask is saturated in the brand's signature Pitera essence and thoroughly hydrates skin, leaving it looking noticeably more radiant and crystal clear."

This is an expensive facial mask I probably wouldn't have bought for myself. I've read glowing reviews of SK-II products so I'm glad for the opportunity to try it.

The Body Shop Oils Of Life Intensely Revitalising Facial Oil
Deluxe Sample Size: 7ml. Value: $12.82
(Full Size: 30 ml RRP: $54.95)


The Body Shop Oils Of Life Intensely Revitalising Facial Oil

"This daily facial oil revitalises skin and helps reduce the visible signs of ageing. Made from 99% oils of natural origin, the lightweight formula effortlessly melts into skin, leaving a silky, non-sticky finish. Use alone or add to your moisturiser."

I currently have quite a few oils already open at home that I need to use up so I probably won't open this one for a while. My oils seem to last for a long time. This one is however a convenient travel size and is securely closing in a plastic bottle, so I will probably take it with me on my next holiday.

Once again this Marie Claire Ageless Parcel is a fabulous beauty subscription box winner! I love the sound of each product and will use them all. This box allows me to try numerous age appropriate beauty products aimed at younger looking skin, plus a lovely fragrance, all of which I have never tried before. 

This box is brilliant value. I've calculated the total value of the box to be $103.82. For a small outlay of $25 this is an absolute bargain!

I'd definitely recommend trying this Marie Claire Ageless Parcel to any beauty lover interested in younger looking skin. You can read my review of the inaugural Ageless Beauty box HERE.

The Parcel has a strong track history of producing amazing value beauty subscription boxes with fabulous products. For those interested in seeing what the Marie Claire The Parcel subscription boxes have previously looked like, you click on the following links. I have previously reviewed The Parcel Winter EditThe Parcel Autumn EditThe Parcel Summer Edit and The Parcel Spring Edit.

NOTE: The Marie Claire Ageless Parcel has now been discontinued.

Which of the above Marie Claire Ageless Parcel products appeals to you the most?

xxx
Ingrid.

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Monday, 7 December 2015

Christmas Gift Ideas For Women 30 Years+

I believe the best gifts for women in the 30 year+ category are consumable gifts. Gifts that will provide them with a little, or large, (depending on your budget) touch of luxury, pampering and relaxation! I know these are my favourite type of gifts to receive!

Consumable gifts won't further clutter already full homes but they can be enjoyed guilt-free over the Christmas, New Year and holiday season. These consumable gifts are indulgences women may not have bought for themselves whilst they've been busy organising and buying Christmas gifts for everyone else! Best of all these gifts encourage women to relax and take some precious time out for themselves! Don't all women need that!!!!! 

Below are some of my favourite gift suggestions for women 30 years+.

As regular readers of Fabulous and Fun Life know I am a huge fan of lovely fragrances, whether these be fragrances for the home or fragrances for the body. Giving the gift of fragrance is the perfect consumable luxurious and pampering gift for any woman, especially one aged 30 years+! Here are some of my favourite fragrant gift suggestions.

FRAGRANT GIFTS FOR THE HOME 



Glasshouse Fragrances Coney Island Burnt Sugar & Fig Triple Scented Candle 60g $18.95 
Click to shop HERE. It also comes in larger sizes.

Glasshouse Fragrances Minature Diffuser Trio including the Manhattan Little Black Dress, Montego Bay Coconut & Lime, and Tahaa Vanilla Caramel fragrances $49.95 Click to shop HERE

Glasshouse Fragrances Amalfi Coast Luxury Travel Pack including a hand creme and triple scented candle in Amalfi Coast Sea Mist fragrance $29.95 Click to shop HERE

Ecoya Mini Madison Candles Gift Box. Includes Lotus Flower, French Pear and Sweet Pea & Jasmine scented candles. On Sale currently for $42.46 Click to shop HERE

FRAGRANT GIFTS FOR THE BODY




Vera Wang Princess Eau De Toilette EDT Spray 100ml 

Ecoya Hand & Body Wash - Lotus Flower. Currently on Sale for $21.21 Click to shop HERE

Juicy Couture By Juicy Couture For Women EDP Spray 100ml Currently on sale, reduced from $139 to $63.95! Click to shop HERE

Travalo Excel Refillable Fragrance Atomiser 5ml Purple $19.95 Click to shop HERE
I know this isn't a consumable but this was too perfect a little gift not to include! It's a refillable fragrance atomiser, perfect for taking travelling or for popping in your handbag when out socialising or at work! It comes in various different colours so you could even get several different colours for different fragrances when travelling. These are definitely on my Santa wish list!  

HAND CREAMS
The older I get the more hand cream I seem to need and go through! Thus I think hand creams are a perfect consumable Christmas gift. I especially love the festively packaged MOR My One and Only in Lychee Flower hand cream!


MOR My One and Only in Lychee Flower 

MOR My One and Only In Lychee Flower 50ml $12.95 Click to shop HERE


Glasshouse Fragrances Montego Bay Coconut Lime Hand Creme With Shea Butter and Argan Oil $24.95 Click to shop HERE

Glasshouse Fragrances Tahaa Vanilla & Caramel Hand Creme with Shea Butter and Argan Oil $24.95  Click to shop HERE

EDIBLE CHOCOLATE BLOOMS 
Finally, in addition to loving beauty products, I also love chocolate, as I suspect do a lot of other 30 year+ women! We need it to survive our busy lives - lol! Thus I couldn't leave out these stunningly presented festive chocolate creations!




Medium Luxury Purple Christmas Tree $85 Click to shop HERE

Medium Christmas Delight Bouquet $69 Click to shop HERE

Chandon Indulgence - Red $89 Click to shop HERE

With Love Flower Posy $55 Click to shop HERE

I hope the above Gift Guide for 30 year+ women has given you a few fabulous gift ideas & made your Christmas shopping a bit easier and quicker! 

If you love these gift suggestions but think no one will take up your hints, even after you leave this post open on your screen in front of your hubby, then my final suggestion is to indulge and treat yourself! Go on, you deserve it!


Which of the above gift suggestions is your favourite?

xxx
Ingrid.

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Don't forget to head over and enter the giveaway on Fabulous and Fun Life blog. Click HERE for the giveaway. Entries will close 14/12/2015. There will be three lucky winners. Each prize is worth over $140.

* The MOR My One & Only was kindly gifted to me for editorial consideration. All opinions are my own. Full disclosure policy here.

Monday, 30 November 2015

The Easiest, Most Effective Anti-Ageing Strategy + GIVEAWAY

I love Australia's sunny climate and outdoor lifestyle. Unfortunately scientific research has found that about 90% of premature skin ageing is believed to be caused by UV exposure from the sun.


Another study found that a two percent increase in skin damage ages the face by three years! YIKES! I don't mind ageing gracefully according to my years but not by more than my years!

Premature skin ageing can include:
  • fine lines
  • wrinkles
  • age spots
  • uneven skin tone
  • freckles
  • textural changes to skin
  • precancerous skin changes and even
  • skin cancer.
Premature skin ageing, once present, is extremely difficult to reverse! It really is much easier to prevent in the first place rather than try to reverse.

The easiest and most effective anti-premature ageing strategy is to use high SPF sunscreens. 

Nowadays, with the large range of sun screen products available, there is just no excuse not to apply sunscreen each and every day, whether it's sunny or overcast. There are products to suit every person, every part of your body and every occasion!

Sunscreens have dramatically improved since the days of my childhood! Gone are the days of the thick, greasy pore-clogging sunscreens - thank goodness! In their place are a myriad of sunscreens that are all lightweight, low in fragrance and dry to touch. Some also include secondary benefits such as providing intensive moisturising or containing additional anti-ageing properties.

Here's a brief overview of some of the effective new sunscreen products currently on the market. Firstly, looking at sunscreens specifically developed for the face.

SunSense Face Specific Sunscreens 

SunSense Daily Face SPF 50+
75g Tube $14.99
A light oil-free moisturising sunscreen with a sheer tint for an invisible matte finish.It's non-comedogenic so it won't clog pores. It's also fragrance, PABA and lanolin free. Contains Vitamins B3 and E. It can be worn alone or under makeup.

SunSense Anti-Ageing Face SPF 50+
100ml $20.95
An oil-free sunscreen formulated with Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) and Vitamins B3 and E
I love the multi-functional nature of this sunscreen as not only does it protect your skin from the premature ageing effects of the sun, the AHA also works to improve skin texture and tone whilst helping to visibly reduce fine lines and wrinkles! The added Vitamin E is an antioxidant which helps improve the appearance of age spots and helps smooth fine lines and wrinkles. Perfect for my 40+ year old skin!

SunSense Anti-Ageing Face Matte SPF 50+
100ml $20.95
This sunscreen is very similar to the one above with the same benefits of the added AHA, vitamins B3 and E. The difference is this sunscreen has a sheer tint for an invisible matte finish. I love the feel of the matte finish of this sunscreen on my skin. This sunscreen is my new go-to sunscreen for my face!

SunSense Moisturising Face SPF50+
100ml $13.95
I received this sunscreen originally from a BeautyHeaven event a couple of months ago. This sunscreen is easy to apply, absorbs quickly and is non greasy and non sticky. It has an oil-free base and can be worn either alone or under makeup without the makeup sliding off. It's non comedogenic and free from fragrances, PABA and lanolin. It is also moisturising, as the name suggests, and thus perfect for normal and dry skin. 

SunSense Lip Balm SPF 50+
15ml Tube $5.95
Melanin helps protect our skin against ultraviolet radiation but unfortunately our lips don't produce melanin. This makes it even more important to apply sunscreen to our lips. SunSense Lip Balm comes in an easy glide on applicator tube. It feels soothing and moisturising probably due to the added cocoa butter and vitamin E in its formula. Being fragrance, PABA and lanolin free, as well as propylene glycol and preservative free, it's suitable for sensitive skin.

Banana Boat & Dermalogica Sun Protection Products

Banana Boat Everyday Faces SPF 50+
100ml $11.99
This product is an oil-free, non-greasy and gentle formula designed for daily use. It absorbs quickly and easily into your skin whilst offering all round broad spectrum protection. It's light enough to wear under makeup.

Banana Boat Everyday Sensitive SPF 50+
100g $16.49
This sunscreen is specially formulated to provide optimal sun protection for sensitive skin and is ideal for those who may avoid using sunscreen for fear of irritation. It's lightweight, fragrance free and non greasy whilst still offering broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection. It is 4 hours water resistant.

50ml $92.50 (Currently on sale for $74)
I've included this product as it is a bit different from the others. I received it at a BeautyHeaven Dermalogica event a couple of months ago where it was prescribed for my skin after I underwent a Face Mapping process. You can read more about this process here. Whereas the other products I've mentioned today I'd class as sunscreens, some of which have the added benefit of a moisturiser, this product I'd class as a moisturiser treatment with the added benefit of SPF 50. It focuses on reducing hyper-pigmentation in the skin including the development of new pigmentation from UV light from the sun.

Much as I have loved using this product, unfortunately it is way too expensive to use in the quantities recommended for sunscreen usage even if you limit yourself to just using it on your face and neck as I have done, i.e it's recommended you use more than 1/2 teaspoon (3ml) to the face and the same (3ml) for the neck. 

Next looking at sunscreens for the rest of the body.

SunSense Sunscreens

SunSense Ultra SPF 50+
125ml $10.25
This is an ideal family sunscreen offering very high protection and 3 hours water resistance. It contains dual UVA/UVB absorbers, applies easily and doesn't leave a greasy residue. It also comes in a huge 500ml pump pack ($23.95) that would be useful for keeping near the door as a reminder to apply before going outdoors.

SunSense Sport SPF 50+
50ml roll-on $8.95
This is the sunscreen I pop in my youngest son's school and sports bags. The roll-on applicator makes it easy for him to apply and it's secure from any potential leakage. It is specially developed with UV, water, sand and sweat in mind. It is 4 hours water resistant and also sand and sweat resistant.

SunSense Clear Gel SPF 50
125ml $11.95
This sunscreen is my teenage son and daughter's favourite! It is a readily absorbed, super quick drying and easy to spread gel which is suitable for all skin types including hairy, oily and acne-prone skin. It is sand resistant and water resistant for 60 minutes.

SunSense Sensitive SPF 50+  
75g $10.95
This gentle sunscreen lotion is suitable for very sensitive skin including babies. 
It is free from chemical absorbers, lanolin, fragrance and colour. Water resistant for 4 hours. Paediatrician and dermalogially tested. Suitable for face and body.

SunSense Clear Mist SPF 50
200ml $17.99
I like using this SunSense Clear Mist spray on my body when I'm by the pool. It's clear so I don't need to worry about rubbing it in. It's easy to use, absorbs easily, and dries quickly. It has added vitamin B3 and E and is free from PABA, lanolin, preservatives and propylene glycol. It has the advantage of being water resistant for 3 hours.

I'm determined my children are not going to have the premature skin ageing I have due to sun damage from my younger days. Having suffered from a malignant melanoma and having had two surgeries for this I am vigilant with both my sun protection and theirs. Most of my skin damage was done in my youth, but at least I can prevent my premature ageing due to the sun from getting any worse and theirs from developing! I suspect my children's generation's skin will be in such a better condition than my generation's skin tends to be at the age of 40 and beyond!

GIVEAWAY
If you want to protect your skin from the number one cause of premature ageing this summer you are in luck. Thanks to the generosity of SunSense I have 3 x SunSense Summer Favourites Packs to giveaway to readers of Fabulous and Fun Life just in time for the summer holidays! Each pack is valued at over $140!

Each SunSense Summer Favourites pack includes the following items:
  • SunSense Daily Face SPF 50+ 75g
  • SunSense Anti Ageing Face Matte 50+ 100ml
  • SunSense Moisturising Face SPF 50+ 100ml
  • SunSense Sport SPF 50+ 200g
  • SunSense Ultra Trigger Spray SPF 50+ 200g
  • SunSense Lip Balm SPF 50+
  • SunSense Clear Mist SPF 50 200ml
  • SunSense Aftersun Cooling Creme 200g
  • SunSense Neoprene Beach Bag + SunSense Inflatable Pool donut.
Just follow the instructions in the RaffleCopter link below and good luck! This competition closes at midnight on 14/12/2015.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Which of the above sunscreens appeals to you the most and why?

xxx
Ingrid.

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 * These products were kindly gifted to me for editorial consideration. All opinions are my own. Full disclosure policy here.