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Thursday, 11 September 2014

Icehouse and Michael Paynter = Stellar.

You're probably already sick of me telling you that I love music... It's true... But here is some more music love for you.

I was lucky enough to go and see Icehouse and Michael Paynter perform recently, and it was amazing.

If you're not Australian, then you might not have heard of Icehouse, but they are a band that were dominating the radio waves in the 80's. Michael Paynter, on the other hand is a Melbourne singer-songwriter-multi-instrumentalist-allroundniceguy, who was born in the 80's.
Michael Paynter doing his thing.

Michael Paynter is a favourite of mine (as you can see here), and when I heard that he was coming to my town playing in Icehouse, as well as being the support act, I was incredibly excited. This was my fourth time seeing Michael perform live, and I was back at the venue where I had first witnessed his amazing talent. He did not disappoint.  Armed with just an acoustic guitar and his stellar voice, he managed to keep the excited crowd quiet. He started his set with a stripped back version of 'Another You,' from his album 'Weary Stars,' and filled the rest of his set with new takes on songs from the album, ('Love The Fall,' 'Weary Stars' and 'Let Go,') as well as some back catalog stuff ('Freedom's Not For Me' and 'Closer'). A cover of Elvis' 'My Babe' also made it into the mix.  All songs performed to perfection, with Michael's trademark range and vibrato. And not to forget the between-song banter that Michael does so well, making fun of himself for audience amusement.

(A tiny snippet of Michael Paynter playing 'Let Go.')

Next up were Icehouse, who after 20+ years of playing and touring have got it down to a fine art. Watching these guys was like watching them jam in the studio, nice, relaxed and fun.  Iva Davies' voice is as good as it is recorded, and he commands an audience when he sings. And you can tell the band has been playing together for a while, purely by the way they interact on stage.

The man himself, Iva Davies.

They played all of their hits ('Electric Blue,' 'Crazy,' 'Hey Little Girl,' 'Great Southern Land,' 'We Can Get Together,') and so many more. Each band member had their time to shine, with sax solos, guitar solos, drum solos and keys solos left right and centre. Michael Paynter even got his time in the spotlight, taking the lead on 'Touch The Fire.' The only disappointment of the night, was the fact that 'Man of Colour' didn't make it into the set.  I've seen many a video of Iva and Michael performing it together, and it's a shame I couldn't witness it in person.

Michael and Iva performing 'Touch The Fire.'

All in all, a brilliant night of music, and despite ending up with seats in the nosebleed section, it was still phenomenal.

Have you seen any good gigs lately? I'd love to know.

Beth. x

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Rimmel Lasting Finish by Kate Moss Lipsticks.

Hi, I'm Beth, and I am a lipstick addict. I have way more than is humanly necessary... Many of these lipsticks are the Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipsticks by Kate Moss.

And let me just say, I love them. I love everything about them.
The formula of these is lovely. They're creamy, pigmented, they smell nice, and there's a great shade range, (even though I stick mainly to reds).  The ones in the red packaging dry matte, and last and last. I used to wear these with lip liner and lip cote (see my post here), but I realised, for these ones you don't need to bother faffing around, they just last. The ones in the black are slightly more glossy, and don't tend to last quite as long.

As a poor university student, these also aren't too bad on the bank balance! They retail for about $12, but are often on offer, which makes it far too easy to pick up multiple shades at once.

L-R: 103, 107, 111, 10, 09.
I currently own (in the red packaging) 103, 107, 111, (in the black packaging) 09 and 10.
103 is a muted pink, with a hint if brown, that is great to throw on for everyday wear. 107 is a dark wine/red colour, that you'll often see Zoella sporting, (and not going to lie, that is where my love for these started). 111 is a bright red, but it doesn't have an orange tone to it. 09 is very, very similar to 107 and 10 is very similar to 111, but you've got to have one in each formula!

Have you tried any of these? What other shades do I need?

Beth. x

Thursday, 28 August 2014

The $3 life saver.

There's a time in every person's life when they find that product that saves them. That product that is multipurpose, budget-friendly, and that has 'can't-live-without-it' status. What is this holy grail you ask? Paw Paw ointment.

I've had a tube of Paw Paw ointment sitting at the bottom of my handbag for years, and it was only just recently that I delved into the depths of my bag to use it again, (after becoming increasingly irritated with how much lip balm I was having to use to make my lips semi-ok).

How I lived without using this for so long, I have no idea, but I'm very happy to have it in my life again!

Brand-wise, paw paw ointment is pretty much the same across the board, (and many many brands have their version of it). I've tried the Lucas' one (which is about $5 and a cult favourite) and the Beauty Care Co. one ($3 at Kmart). Price-wise they're pretty similar, and if we're really splitting hairs, the Kmart one smells slightly nicer because it has aloe vera and shea butter in it.

And don't let the word 'ointment' put you off.  This stuff is balmy, but not overly sticky, and not coloured either.

When it comes to the uses of this product, it's really up to you.  I personally mainly use it a lip balm, but you can also use it on dry skin, cuts, chafing, rashes, insect bites... Anywhere really!

So if you're looking for that product that could change your life (or make your lips slightly nicer at least!), paw paw ointment may be up your street.

Beth. x

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Review

I'd heard a lot of buzz surrounding the Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Moisturising Lip Colour Balms, and as an avid lip product lover I thought I'd give them a go.

First of all, price-wise, these are not exactly cheap at $35 each, (but that didn't stop me picking up two... I have an addiction).  And if it weren't for the price, I think I'd be a lot happier with the product.

Don't get me wrong, I like these a lot.  And yes, the packaging does look relatively expensive. They're  also in crayon/stick form, so they apply really easily and are perfect for on the go. The colours themselves are really pigmented, and there's a good range of colours (that seems to be expanding quite regularly).   And as an added bonus, they're actually quite moisturising, which is nice to find. (I normally wear matte, so it was nice to have some moisture).

However, I've noticed that they do tend to bleed a bit. They also wear off around the middle of the mouth relatively easily, which I could understand if you're eating or drinking a lot, but they wear off with just general wear, which irks me a bit, because I'm lazy when it comes to reapplying. This may not be the case with the lighter colours in the range though, as I only picked up 03- Mightiest Maraschino and 08-Grandest Grape.
Top: Mightiest Maraschino, Bottom: Grandest Grape.

(On a sidenote, 06-Plum Russian in the Bourjois Colourboost lip crayon range is a very good dupe for Grandest Grape! It's not quite as pigmented, but otherwise it's almost the same).

I quite like the colours I picked up, (although there was many more that I wanted to choose!) Mightiest Maraschino is a bright red, that when it wears off, looks slightly on the pink side. Grandest Grape, as the name suggests, is a more purple/wine coloured red.

Overall, I think if these were less expensive, I would be much happier with them.  They are a lovely product, and have some great colours, but I probably won't be picking up any more at this point.

What do you guys think? Have you tried any of these, or do you have any lip product recommendations?

Beth. x

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Shuffle to the shuffle: My music, mixed up.

I love music. There's no ifs or buts about it. I'm a fan of lots of unsigned or not well known Australian bands, and I love discovering new music (or old music). I also love checking out what other people are listening to. So I thought I'd put my ipod on shuffle, and show you guys the first twelve songs that come up.  This could end badly... But we'll see how we go.

(You can click on the link after each song to listen to the song - if they're online, and I'll put each band's social media link as well... All for ease of music stalking!)

1.     The Fallout - Woodlock
These boys from Melbourne have really hit their straps with their recent EP release. Their style is       folky with a bit of a rock/alternative edge to it, and very easy to listen to. (I reviewed the EP here).

2.     Right Through You - Alanis Morissette (video)
A hit from Morissette's Jagged Little Pill album of the late 90's, this song is angsty rock, that is so easy to belt out when you're feeling angry.

3.     Inside Our World - Bleached Academy
This band sadly is no more, but they had some brilliant pop/punk tracks, with the very talented Hayley Warner as the energetic vocallist.

4.     Trailed - Gossling (audio)
Helen Croome a.k.a Gossling's unique voice is hauntingly beautiful... Enough said.

5.     We Won't Run - Sarah Blasko (video)
Another Australian songstress with a beautiful voice, Sarah Blasko is a pop musician with a quirky twist.  

6.     Different Worlds - Jes Hudak & George Krikes (video)
This song was used to advertise a talent show in Australia, which catapulted it to the top of the charts.  It's such a beautiful song, with a continuous simple piano melody throughout.

7.     City & Colour - Thirst (video)
This song by music legend Dallas Green (a.k.a City and Colour), is a catchy pop/alternative track, that will have you tapping your foot in no time.

8.     The Sun Won't Sleep - New Empire (video)     
Probably the hardest working boys in Australian music, New Empire's new album In A Breath features this upbeat, catchy pop track, with lovely lyrical content.

9.     Carry On - Motor Ace (video)
A song from my favourite band of all time.  This classic Australian alternative/rock song was popular in the early 2000's... It also happens to appear on an album which is very hard to come by nowadays, (I explain why here).

10.     Empty Town - Red Ink (video)
This four-piece from Melbourne spent a long time crafting the ideal debut album, and it was worth the wait.  This track is the perfect mix of dreamy, synthy pop, and edgier rock.

11.    Siamese - Motor Ace (video)
Another Motor Ace song on the list... Surprise, surprise!  This is my current favourite song.  Again, it's an alternative/rock track.  The lyrics in this are brilliant too.

12.      Sweet Disposition - The Temper Trap (video)
Another Australian band who have taken Europe by storm, The Temper Trap are known for their pop/rock sound, with soaring vocals and killer chorus'.

So there you go, a taste of what I'm listening to, (I'm surprised there's no Michael Paynter on there though!)  Almost 80% Australian music, (my true love).

What do you think?  Leave any music recommendations below, they'd be much appreciated!

Beth. x

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Getting deep up in here #2... Social phobia.

I think I have a mild social anxiety disorder/phobia.
And before you say "everyone gets nervous in social situations sometimes", let me explain.
Social phobias can be generalised into a fear of either performance situations (eg. giving a speech, or being watched whilst performing a task), or (in my case) situations involving social interaction (eg. making small talk, meeting new people). It can also be specific, ie. fearing a specific social situation(s).
Now I have no problem with performance situations. Put me in front of an audience with a microphone in hand, and I will enjoy every second, but when it comes to more interpersonal situations, that's where the stress kicks in.
In general, I am a worrier. I'm a person who thinks too much about things, and tends to dwell on certain situations.
In social environments, such as parties or out clubbing, I get even more stressed. I generally feel really uncomfortable and conspicuous. I spend a lot of time mulling over how uncool I am in comparison to the other people there, or thinking of how I have nothing interesting to say. Sometimes, I can't even muster the confidence to talk to people that I do know. When I do manage to talk to someone I either struggle to find a topic of conversation, or end up having word vomit and saying things that just make me sound strange.
I then come home... Usually after I've bailed early, and then I stay up far too late thinking about all the things I should've done or said... Like I am currently doing now, after bailing early from an 18th, where I spent most of the time talking to my parents and my parents friends (which I didn't mind too much, apart from the various instances of word vomit when they asked me about certain things) instead of people my own age.
It's not just at the social occasion, but afterwards too. I normally find myself sitting in my car, trying to not cry or hyperventilate or both. Which is probably why I try and avoid parties or clubbing, being incredibly glad when I have a legitimate excuse not to attend. And avoidance, I know, is as a result of the snowballing worries and obsessive thinking which characterise this phobia.
And don't get me wrong, I love hanging out with my friends, and doing fun stuff, but the minute it involves people outside my ring of friends, the worry sets in.
Even at uni I sometimes find myself overly conscious of what others are thinking about me. Making phone calls is another thing I struggle with sometimes, and I often put it off to the very last minute.
I am currently studying psychology, so I guess a good place to start was to psychoanalyse my own behaviour.
Writing this, I know it probably sounds worse than it is, but if you can relate in any way, let me know.

Beth. x

(***** I want to stress that I haven't been officially diagnosed, and I'm not a fully qualified psychologist yet, so I can't say my own self diagnosis is correct. However, judging from the VERY mild symptoms I have noticed, this is what I have come up with. I am aware that Social Anxiety Disorder can be debilitating to those experiencing it, and if you think you are, please talk to someone you trust, or seek information from places such as:

Thursday, 31 July 2014

The Lazy Girl's Guide to... Wearing red lipstick.

I am a lover of wearing bright red lipstick, and I have far too many shades red for one person.  I am not a lover of worn off lipstick though… You know the look, just an outline of red around the edges and no colour left in the centre… Definitely not ideal.

To combat this, I’ve compiled a lit of techniques, that just might save you from the awkward half on/half off bright lip.

  • Prime your lips. – Get rid of all those dead skin cells by using a lib scrub like the Lush Popcorn scrub. It’ll help make your lips smooth and ready to adhere to your lipstick.

  • Apply, blot, apply, blot. – I’ve found the best way to elongate your favourite red’s staying power is to apply it (over your liner), blot it with a tissue, apply it again, and blot it again.  This helps get rid of excess, which will easily transfer when eating etc.

  • Seal. – Not the animal… A product like Lipcote, when applied (and let to dry) will seal your lipstick, which helps it stay on.  (Lipcote is apparently “kiss-proof” … I wouldn’t go as far to say that, but it definitely lasts through eating and drinking.)
  • Drink using a straw. – This makes me feel like a complete twat when I’m drinking a bottle of water through a straw, but it works!  Why waste you Mac red on a bottle of water?

Top to bottom: Nars Velvet Matte lip pencil in Cruella, in Damned, Mac matte lipstick in Ruby Woo.
  • Matte all the way! – Matte lipsticks, I’ve found, last longer just in themselves. Because they’re not as glossy and shiny, they’re more likely to adhere to your lips. (My favourites are the Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencils – available from Mecca Cosmetica is Australia, and Mac in Ruby Woo).

So these are some of the tricks I’ve come across along the way.  I hope they’re in some way helpful.
Let me know if you have any more! I’d do anything to not have to reapply.

Beth. x