Essence is one of those brands that offer quality products at an affordable price. Whilst I do prefer purchasing the bulk of my products from higher-end brands, I always look to Essence when I’m in need of a specific eyeshadow or lip pencil to create a look for a special event – because I most likely wouldn’t use these products on a daily basis and I don’t need to feel bad because it was cheap anyway!
We are always so particular about eating Halaal food. We ensure that the products we buy are certified Halaal and that it doesn’t contain gelatin or ingredients derived from animals. That’s a good thing and I never ever want us to stop doing this. But if we do it for food, why don’t we do it for makeup?
A few weeks ago, I made a trip to my local Clicks, to pick up a few of Essence’s eye pencils. I’m obsessed with eye pencils, so when I got to Clicks, I picked a bunch of them in a variety of colours and hurried on home.
It was only when I got home and was creating swatches of all my pretty new eye pencils, I noticed that one of the pencils had a little sticker on its cap stating that it contained Carmine. “Carmine?”, I asked myself. What’s that?
I’ve never ever come across this ingredient before, so naturally I googled. And I was absolutely horrified at the results.
Carmine is made from cochineal. And cochineal is made from the dried bodies of female insects (yes, I said insects! So eww, I know.) that are native to Mexico. And Carmine is the vivid crimson pigment that can be found in a lot of makeup products. So now can you see why it’s Haraam?
Now just because it’s a crimson pigment, doesn’t mean it will only be found in products that are red/reddish. From the eyeliners that I purchased, it was the blue and purple eyeliner that contained Carmine. So just make sure you check every single product you purchase, to ensure that it doesn’t contain Carmine.
I think with Essence products, they make it a point to alert you that the product contains Carmine. However, I’ve heard that certain MAC, Bobbi Brown, Loreal and NARS products contain Carmine – I don’t use products from these brands, so I don’t know if this is true, so just check out the ingredients list before making your purchase!
* A lot of Urban Decay Cosmetics as well as Naked Palettes may contain Carmine as stated on Urban Decay’s and Sephora’s website. So please read through the ingredients list before purchasing. Also, Carmine maybe stated in the ingredients list as Carmine/ CI 75470/cochineal.*
I hope this helped 🙂 And if you already knew about Carmine, please do pass it on to your fellow sisters!
P.S Muslimah Weekly is a new category I am adding to GITGH, each week (or 2 weeks, depending on exams etc) I will be covering a different topic that I think will be of interest to you lovelies! I hope you enjoy it and learn from it too 🙂
I was thrilled when I got there, thrilled I tell you! There was this sale basket – it didn’t specifically say sale, but the goods were definitely marked down – and I picked up a few gems.
1) Essence Eyeshadow in 55 Shrimp Me Up
I love coral and peach hues. They work super well with my skin tone and they are just such happy colors! So when I saw this baby, I knew I had to have it plus it didn’t hurt that it was only R9.95. Yup, R9.95!
2) Essence Eyeshadow in 66 Peppermint Ice Cream
This little one caught my eye because of its shimmer. You may not be able to see it in the image above but it has this wonderful icy, shimmer to it. I wouldn’t necessarily use it on my entire lid perhaps just on the inner corners to bring some life to my eyes. Another great buy at just R8.95.
3) Essence 2 in 1 Kajal Pencil in 10 Sweet & Heart
Eyeliners are my absolute fav. So when I saw this beaut chilling in the sale basket I was like I got to have you! And now I do! I like the fact that it is double ended so it’s easier to use the two colors together if you wish. The colors are also quite pigmented, check out my swatches at the end of this post. And another one bites the dust at just R9.95. Wooohooo
4) Essence Pigments in 01 Studio 54
Now this one was the only one that I can actually use for the upcoming wedding, my outfit is blue with gold accessories, so yeah this one is perfect. These pigments are amazing. I was trying out all the different colors in Dischem but I liked this one the most. It’s more of a glitter gold than a shimmer gold, which I love since I already own a shimmer gold. At R29,95 it is pricier than the others, but it’s worth it – it looks soo good!
Okay, so in the images it looks more silver than gold – I’m not sure why. Maybe bad lighting? Anyway, check out the swatches below to get a closer look!
I absolutely adore glitter eyeliners, but the brands that make them are a bit too pricey for my budget.
One of the most affordable glitter eyeliners is Essence’s Crystal Eyeliner but the glitter in those liners are tiny and are more suitable to be worn in the day rather than at night. I wanted a liner that is super cute, not overdone but that still makes a statement, so I decided to create my own. And here’s how:
All you need is:
A tube of transparent, gel mascara
A glitter pot in any colour
A skinny, eyeliner brush
Before you begin, ensure that the eyeliner brush is clean and dry. Wash away any leftover product with some baby shampoo or makeup remover and then dry it off with a paper towel.
Dip the brush into the tube of mascara, ensuring that the bristles are thoroughly coated with the gel.
Now dip the brush into the pot of glitter. Go for a little bit of glitter at a time, if you overload the glitter it will make the task of applying it as eyeliner much more difficult. Just tap off any excess glitter into the pot or cap.
Apply to eyes (or hand in my case :P)
Please note that I have used glitter that consists of larger flakes due to the fact that if it gets into the eyes, it will be easier to remove than the mini flakes. Also note that no glitter is 100% safe to use on your eyes, so please be super, duper careful when applying – we wouldn’t want any trips to the ER now would we?
I love wearing gold on my eyes – I don’t know why, but I just do. In my previous post, I did a review on my 2 purchases from Essence, The Lash and Brow Gel Mascara and the Crystal Eyeliner in Gold Rush, which I’ll be using for my look today.
To create a look, like the one above all you need is:
- Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner from Essence
- Crystal Eyeliner in Gold Rush from Essence
- Lash and Brow Gel Mascara from Essence
- An eyelash curler
Apply a very thiiiiiin line of liquid liner.
Apply a thin line of Crystal Eyeliner in Gold rush on top of your liquid liner.
Finish of your lashes with 2 coats of the Lash and Brow Gel Mascara.
Aaand done! Hope you enjoyed this tutorial.
I popped into Dischem over the weekend to grab myself some new Essence goodies, I wasn’t sure what I was looking for but I knew that when I saw it, I’ll know. And I did.
I ended up coming home with the Lash and Brow Gel Mascara and the Crystal Eyeliner in Gold Rush, and I am extremely happy with my purchases!
Lash and Brow gel Mascara:
A mascara and a tamer of unruly brows, all in one. Retailing for only R34.95, it is a makeup bag must-have.
It is packaged in a normal-sized mascara tube with a normal mascara brush, but the fun part is, is that the tube is transparent – so you can see exactly how much product you have left.
I have this tendency to rub my eyes which causes a black ring around my eyes, making me look like a racoon. But this way, since it’s transparent, I can say goodbye to racoon-me.
I love this product, I truly do. But the only downfall is that it hardens your brows. But I guess it has to, if you want your brows to stay in its’ place.
Crystal Eyeliner in Gold Rush:
I wasn’t expecting much from this product, only because I once purchased a glitter/crystal eyeliner from Essence’s Breaking Dawn Trend Edition before, and it was useless. It had no staying power, whatsoever, and I never got to use it. But I think Essence perhaps realized their blunder, because their new Crystal Eyeliner range is frikken’ amazing.
When I first tried it out on my wrist, it looked really dull. No real sparkle to it. But on your eyes, it really does sparkle. Check out the images and tutorial here.
The brush is very skinny making the application much easier. The staying power is quite long, as long as water doesn’t touch it.
All in all, for just R31.95, it is an amazing product and well worth the buy. I will definitely be purchasing the other colours soon.
The new Limited Edition ‘It Pieces’ from Catrice Cosmetics is set to hit South African stores in mid Jan next year, and I cannot wait for it to arrive! This particular limited edition will make a great addition to my makeup collection! The colours and shades that make up It Pieces are perfect for Spring/Summer and will add a great pop of colour to your outfit!
Included in this LE is a single eye shadow quattro, crushed crystal nail polishes in 3 colours, a defining blush and 2 lip colours – all of which look like they going to be amazing! However, I’m most excited about Sun Glow Shimmering Bronzing Powder and the Made To Stay Smoothing Lip Polish which is available in 3 shades.
The bronzing powder has a cool 3D embossed zig zag pattern which is supposed to allow for the 2 shades within the compact to blend well with each other and gives the skin a radiant summer glow. Most bronzers I’ve tried are very dark and make me look as if I’ve got dark patches everywhere, so I’m holding thumbs for this one!
The lip polishes have the colour of a lipstick, shine of a gloss and durability of a balm, 3 products in 1, now that’s what I’m talking about! I usually use my mood lipstick from Dischem as a base, follow up with Labello’s Fruity Shine and top off with my Smashbox lipgloss, so this product gets me really excited. I’m hoping that the colour does last for the 8 hours that is promised on the packaging, and that the gloss lasts throughout the day. We can only hope for the best!
Plus, I know that even though im a budget I will defo be able to afford this LE, because all of Catrice Cosmetics’ products are very, very reasonably priced – not as cheap as Essence, but still very affordable!
Can’t wait for mid Jan!
So I came up with a great makeup routine, basically my everyday routine for campus, that enhances my natural beauty and which is super easy to achieve. Follow the steps below..
Step 1: BB Cream
I like to use a BB cream rather than a foundation, mostly because foundations are much heavier and more likely to cake up rather than BB creams. Using a BB cream is going to provide light/medium coverage making it a great base for a ’natural’ makeup look.
I particularly like Smashbox’s Camera Ready BB Cream, as it has a SPF of 35 and works very, very well with acne prone skin. But if you are working on budget, Garnier’s Miracle Skin Perfector BB cream is a great alternative, it has an SPF of 15 and is also appropriate for acne prone skin.
Step 2: Blush
Blush is great at brightening up the face and giving you that ‘just pinched’ look, but don’t go too crazy on the blush. Try to get the least amount of product on to your cheeks by dusting your brush off before apply, or swiping it at the back off your hand.
I have an olive skin tone, therefore I tend to gravitate towards blushes in pink hues – but if you are fair/dark skinned peachy hues will look great on you! My favourite blushes are Smashbox Blush Rush in Peony (I love Smashbox, meep!) and Essence’s Silky Touch Blush in Adorable.
Step 3: Lip balm
I like using a balm rather than a gloss or a stickie, as balms provide lips with a light pigment but a subtle gloss, which is more natural. Most people would use a sheer lipgloss/colourless balm, but I’ve found that because of my skin tone, I have to have some colour as neutral lips tend to really wash me out and make me look dull and boring.
I absolutely adore Labello’s Fruity Shine! I probably go through at least 9 of these beauts each year. They are a staple in my campus bag and if you see me in lecs, I’m almost always reapplying. I just can’t get enough. It’s so great because it has an SPF of 15 and it smoothes and conditions the lips whilst providing a slight shimmery pink tint to the lips.
Step 4: Mascara
I love, love, looove mascara! Mascara is like coffee- for my eyes- it provides an instant pick-me-up, it widens and awakens the eyes and just makes me want to give butterfly kisses to everyone!
I love use Elizabeth Arden’s Ceramide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara, as it doesn’t clump or dry out your lashes. Like half way through the day, if I had to touch my lashes it will be super soft , as if I had no mascara on, and nor would it flake. It also conditions the lashes whilst you wear it, so when you wash it out you would notice that your lashes feel so much softer and silkier. A+.
Optional Step: Eyeliner
I’ve mentioned in previous posts that I don’t ever leave the house without eyeliner, and it’s true! I know it’s not very natural to have a swipe of dark eyeliner on your lower lash line but if I don’t, I just look sleepy and sick, not cool!
On most days, I use Catrice Cosmetic’ Smokey Eye Pencil in 01-Black Earl but sometimes I use Essence’s Stays No Matter What waterproof eye pencil in 02-Stunning Brown, to tone it down a little. I’ve found that both Essence and Catrice Cosmetics eyeliners have great staying power and last throughout the day, unlike Smashbox eyeliners which rub off and disappear after a few hours. Definitely getting more for less, with Catrice and Essence.
So that’s it! My ‘natural’ makeup look! Hope you enjoyed the post.
For months, I’ve been nagging my mom to get me one of those Kardashian Make-up Organizers, you know, those acrylic ones that look so amazing and give you a 360 view of all your make up?
Well, eeeek! She got me one! And so naturally, I’ve already stocked it up with all my make up items, but somehow feel that I need more make up to fill up all the empty spaces.
Here it is:
So it looks kind off small in the image above, but trust me its not. It is 300mmx300mmx300mm, it is 4 tiers high with 3 drawers and flip top tier – for perfumes and whatever. And I removed those dividers from the drawers, it just was not working for me. What a great organizer! I love it okaaaay. Simply love it.
And have you seen the handles?? It’s these gorgeous little, acrylic crystal handles and they go perfectly with my room.
My mom bought it for either R999 or R1099 (I wasn’t really paying attention, I was just too excited!!) from one of the lady’s she knows at work. Thank God for mothers! And I love you mom!
Here’s a few more images of my new, favourite thing:
Okay, I’m off to admire my darling little make up organizer now..
For years I have been suffering with a terrible case of acne. I tried a zillion products, such as Dermologica, Essence, Clean and Clear, Young Solution, Simple, Eucerin, Clearasil and many, many others which never worked. These failed attempts at ridding myself of acne just left me depressed and I always found myself being super conscious of my skin. But finally, things are looking up.
I realised my acne was caused by a number of factors – stress, eating habits, hormones, the weather and the environment. Once I identified the factors that were aggravating my acne, I could develop a plan to minimize the effects of these factors on my skin.
Factor 1: Stress
I noticed that whenever it was nearing test/exam time – you know, the time we all go crazy and run around like headless chickens – my skin would go crazy and I would experience breakouts on my cheeks and chin.
To combat this I took a 10 minute break, for every 45 minutes of studying, to perform a breathing exercise (inhale for 10secs, hold for 10secs and exhale for 10secs) and to drink a glass of water. I really felt calm and collected after the breathing exercise, so whenever I feel overwhelmed or stressed, I just breatheJ
Factor 2: Eating Habits
Chocolate, greasy take away food, fizzy drinks and almonds could not be eaten without me breaking out the following day.
So now I swop :
- the greasy take away food for healthy ones such as Kauai,
- almonds for cashews,
- fizzy drinks for pure fruit juice and
- I only eat chocolate once in a month (sigh, extremely sad, I know).
I also ensure that I eat one fruit a day and drink at least 4 litres of water a day.
Factor 3: Hormones
Every month just before my menstrual cycle, I break out into tons of little pimples on my forehead, I’m using Lamelle’s Acnevelle Capsules to counteract the effects that my hormones have on my skin. I have noticed a significant decrease in the size of my breakouts since I have been using Acnevelle, which is awesome
Factor 4: The weather
Whenever it was hot and humid, my skin would become very itchy and red and then slowly but surely little pimples would appear. My skin is extremely sensitive, so the weather is bound to affect it. However, the solution was simple – use nature against nature! I’m Indian and Indian families can’t get enough of rose water – it has some sort of healing/calming powers or whatever. Anyway, I logged on to Faithful to Nature and purchased this bottle of Rose Water and I love it. I take it with me to campus every day and whenever I feel hot or flustered, I just spray some on to my face and aaaah – instantly calm skin!
My acne isn’t totally gone, but it has significantly improved so I believe everything I do is working for sure!
Do you have a problem with acne or sensitive skin? How did you combat it? Would love to hear from you guys!