Beauty Review

Beauty Review | Smashbox Photo Filter Powder Foundation

Beauty Review | Smashbox Photo Filter Powder Foundation

We are now essentially halfway through 2015 ergo, I am halfway through my year of skincare and makeup discovery.  And, I am loving it!

I used to dread the time it took to put on what little makeup I used, but now I actually look forward to it.  My skin is going through some kind of awful mid-life crisis, so I am hugely appreciative of any product that helps make me feel a little less self-conscious right now.

This little black compact from smashbox is seriously the answer to my prayers right now.  Dubbed the #instafilter for your face, the Photo Filter Powder Foundation is my new best friend. I was asked to pick my shade online, which was difficult as there are 10 variations to choose from.  I would definitely recommend you head to a counter for some colour-matching advice before you buy.  I got my shade right (I think!), but I have fairly olive skin and am a typical medium, so shade 6 seems a good fit.

It comes with a double sided round sponge with a different finish on each side, one side for sheer coverage and the other side for full coverage.  After a couple of weeks of using the sponge, I can’t tell which side is which and probably need to replace it with something else so suggestions welcome please!  Maybe I should be using a brush?

This is a really creamy powder, it goes on easily, blends well and sets with a lovely velvety finish.  I have really bad dry patches around my nose and on my chin right now but found that the Photo Filter Powder didn’t accentuate these at all thank goodness!  I have worn it quite a few ways, over BB cream which was great for a nighttime event, on it’s own and with a primer during the day. Though I was happy with it in each circumstance, using the primer first (I used Rimmel Fix and Perfect Pro) seemed to maintain a nice dewy look all day.  8 hour wear?  Absolutely.

It definitely achieves the blur effect that one would expect from a product called Photo Filter.  Containing fancy things such as Light Filter Technology and Photoset Polymers (I’ll leave you to study up on those!), this foundation brings some serious artillery to the table.  I’m in love with its imperfection concealing abilities and only use a few dabs of concealer to finish off, which is crazy if you knew the extent of redness I’m having to hide right now!  < I had a very bad reaction to a product a couple of months ago.  

Would I purchase this product?  Yes, without any hesitation.

Smashbox Photo Filter Powder Foundation RRP $62

I was gifted this product for review purposes, all opinions expressed are my own.


Mummy Blogger New Zealand

Beauty Review | Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II

Beauty Review | Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II

OK ladies, here’s another stellar product from my bag of tricks.  The Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II is definitely an investment, but a wise one.  

I’ve written about serums before and tried quite a few.  In my opinion, this little brown bottle is the queen of them all.  I’ve touched a few times on a terrible reaction I had recently from a skincare product and this serum combined with Plantae’s Lavender Cream Cleanser, Trilogy’s Rosehip Oil and Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion+ now comprises the sum total of my daily skincare routine.  

I love natural, simple products but I also love science and visible results.  It seems strange to think that B.E. {Before Estée!} I would go to bed worrying about in what state I would find my skin in the morning.  Finally, it’s getting better and better everyday.

This is an oil free serum which goes on beautifully and is absorbed rapidly delivering an instant hydration boost that lasts through the night.  My skin was actually breaking down and thinning down the sides of my nose and on my chin.  Advanced Night Repair bolstered my skin’s natural repair process and has strengthened these damaged and delicate areas, which are now almost fully healed!  I mentioned over on Instagram that this is First Aid for skin, and in my case it truly is.

Nightime is the BEST time to take care of your skin and Estée Lauder has totally capitalized on this by targeting skin’s natural nighttime catabolysis (cellular repair process) and bolstering it with Advanced Night Repair, their #1 selling repair serum.  10/10

Available on counter.



Beauty Review | Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant + Limited Edition 15ml + Giveaway

Beauty Review | Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant + Limited Edition 15ml + Giveaway

Good things come in small packages, so they say, and one of the most celebrated beauty products to hit the shelves in recent years is now available in a limited edition mini!

I was lucky enough to get my hands on this wee gem a couple of months ago, so am now well and truly converted to the magic of Trilogy’s stellar Rosehip facial oil.  My skin has been going through a really bad patch recently, every zone on my face seems to have gone in different directions with a myriad combo of teenage girl problems.  Ugh.  

I’ve stuck with the somewhat recent inclusion of Rosehip Oil to my beauty routine and I’m so, so glad I did.  My skin seems to have an increased depth, hopefully fending off the typical thinning associated with aging that I’ve begun to notice over the past few years.  The well documented benefits of Trilogy Certified Organic Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+ include significantly improving brightness, skin tone, reduction of fine lines and wrinkles and improved elasticity and firmness.  Check, check, check.  

Let’s be honest, it’s too soon to say that I can see a noticeable reduction in lines and wrinkles, however, I do believe that regular use of Rosehip oil will probably assist in preventing those pesky fine lines from developing into full blown facial crevasses!  And I’m all for that.

An invitation to discover for yourself why Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+ has become such a beauty phenomena, the Limited Edition 15ml bottle is exactly half the size and half the price of the full size 30ml original! Available throughout June/July or until stocks last, you can pick up your own cute mini from selected Farmers, pharmacy, department and health stores nationwide.

Competition closed. Congratulations Ursula Gee!

We have three bottles to give away!  Comment below to go in the draw to win a bottle here plus head over to Facebook where I’ll be giving away two more bottles of this luscious little miracle.  Competition closes 10/6/15.  NZ residents only por favor. 


Beauty Review | Trilogy Hydrating Body Cream

Beauty Review | Trilogy Hydrating Body Cream

Trilogy Hydrating Body Cream Mummy Blogger NZ

As is to be expected from Lazy Girl over here, my skin usually turns into parched, crispy lizard-like scales over winter. Lots of pants, lots of leggings, not much razor and no effort in the moisturizing department don’t do much for a girl, let’s be honest.
But, sigh, it is the year of beauty and skincare here at The Best Nest so I’m stepping up my game and so has Trilogy.  They’ve reformulated their Ultra Hydrating Body Cream so hopefully I’ll won’t have to come out of hibernation in the Spring needing a full body work-up before I can bare my legs!

My desk is right next to my bathroom so I’ve been grabbing this product a lot when I’ve noticed my hands are dry, which is a great measure of how quickly it’s absorbed.  Result?  Very quickly considering this is an oil-based cream.  Infused with certified organic rosehip oil, the new formulation also includes cocoa butter, sweet almond oil and coconut extract.  Sounds like dessert, but it’s lotion, yay!

A point of difference in this product is the addition of natural mineral mica to reflect light and make skin a bit more glowy as we head into these dull winter months.  I need all the glow I can get so will be treating my skin with this lovely lotion all winter long!  

Trilogy Ultra Hydrating Body Cream (150ml) RRP $29.90


Beauty Review | Manuka Doctor ApiRefine Lip Enhancer

Beauty Review | Manuka Doctor ApiRefine Lip Enhancer

I had a little giggle when this press release arrived, I was slightly dubious as to the efficacy of a lip plumper, but on the inside I was secretly hoping it worked as I have decidedly unluscious, unplump, flat, miserly lips.
Backed up by clinical data, Manuka Doctor claims that lips can increase fullness and prove shape just 5 minutes after application. Brilliant!
It works.
I love it.
Kylie Jenner I am not. Nearing 40 I am. I will gladly take any help I can get and this wee tube delivers instant plump via a slick lipgloss-like gel. The tingly sensation within the first few minutes after application is attributed to the Patented Purified Bee Venom which increase skins elasticity. Visibly. My lips respond really well to this product, the fine lines and creases instantly diminish and I’m left with a fuller, perkier pout and a great hydrated base upon which to apply my new best friend – lipstick!

Manuka Doctor ApiRefine Lip Enhancer RRP$29.95


Beauty Review | Goodness Natural Beauty Lab Chia Seed Oil

Beauty Review | Goodness Natural Beauty Lab Chia Seed Oil

Mummy Blogger New Zealand Chia Seed Oil Review

Last month I went to a new brand launch that got me so excited about Chia seeds …… in quite an unexpected way.
Plant oils have been big news in skincare for a couple of years now, Rosehip oil has been linked to celebs and starlets world wide including the Duchess of Cambridge, who all rave about the benefits of adding a skin oil to their daily routine.
Certified Organic Chia Oil is the next level skincare hero and Goodness Natural Beauty Lab are the first to bring it to New Zealand as the wonder ingredient in an entire range of natural products.
I’ve been using the Goodness Chia Oil in the mornings in lieu of a moisturizer for 2 weeks now and there is a marked difference between it and it’s forerunner, Rosehip Oil. Chia Oil is much more lightweight and far less viscous, meaning it goes on easily and is absorbed quickly with no residue left behind. 
It works beautifully under makeup and seems to maintain all day moisture and prevent caking which happens in a couple of dry zones I’m suffering from at the moment.
I think if you’re struggling to find a daily moisturizer that you love then switching to an oil is an option worth experimenting with. You can use it in addition to moisturizer but I find this too much for my skin.
The facts:
– Goodness Certified Organic Cia Oil has the perfect 3:1 ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 essential fatty acids
– Extracted via cold press so no need for solvents
– As well as the essential fatty acids Chia Oil also delivers minerals, B-vitamins, amino acids and antioxidants to skin
– Available in selected Farmers, New World and Pak n Save stores nationwide

The Goodness Natural Beauty Lab Range

Goodness Certified Organic Chia Seed Oil RRP $23.95 20ml
Goodness Every Morning Moisturizer RRP $19.95 75ml
Goodness Every Evening Cream RRP $23.95 75ml
Goodness Every Day Cream Cleanser RRP $19.95 75 ml
Goodness Every Week Fave Scrub RRP $15.95 75ml

For stockists or more information visit www.goodnessproducts.com

Beauty Review | Manuka Doctor Purifying Facial Wipes and Firm Body Moisturiser

Beauty Review | Manuka Doctor Purifying Facial Wipes and Firm Body Moisturiser

I have been using these two amazing products for the past few months and am convinced that I love them!  Manuka Doctor is a fairly new discovery to me, but after a 3/3 success rate (I reviewed their Apirefine Radiance Serum here) I’m convinced this is a brand that I will stick with in years to come, particularly due to their attention to natural anti-aging superstars such as Manuka Honey and Purified Bee Venom.

ApiClear 3-in-1 Purifying Wipes

I’ve been doing so well with my resolution to up my game this year when it comes to taking care of my skin, but there are still some late nights when I just can’t face the whole bedtime beauty routine.  Having a skin saver product like these wipes up my sleeve makes all the difference when I hit a lazy-girl setback.  I’ve tried pretty much every facial wipe on the supermarket shelves and they all leave my skin with a slight soapy residue.  That’s the point of difference here, the anti-bacterial properties of Manuka Oil works to remove make-up and impurities without leaving me feeling like I need to get up rinse my face {because if I’m using facial wipes I’m already in bed!}.  

Love, love, love. Keep a pack in your bedside cabinet at all times ladies!  At only $9.95 this is a high end product with the same price tag as supermarket brands, so a big win for us.


ApiNourish Firm Body Moisturiser

This wee gem brings the hero ingredients we are used to seeing in facial formulas to the rest of our body.  I’ve been using this for over a month on my neck, décolletage, tummy and upper arms and am impressed with the results.  The combination of Purified Bee Venom, Certified UMF 18+ Manuka Honey and Royal Jelly have added a whole new therapeutic level to daily, all-over body moisturising.  Hydration isn’t sacrificed as Shea Butter and silk extract are combined with the hard working natural trio of Chicory Root, Caesalpinia Spinosa Gum and Red Algae to give your skin an all over boost.

I’m all about anything that can help my skin look firmer and more toned, I work hard to ensure my body is strong and toned on the inside but until now there hasn’t been much I could do to improve the suppleness of my skin.  Manuka Doctor’s Firm Body Moisturiser has filled that gap, taken my daily moisturizing routine and super-charged it.

RRP $54.95 www.manukadr.co.nz

Beauty Blogger NZ Manuka Doctor

Beauty Review | La Mav Anti-Ageing Pack

Beauty Review | La Mav Anti-Ageing Pack

Lets be frank; there are hits and misses when you sample a lot of beauty products but when you stumble upon a winner, a genuine rave-worthy forever-after fave, well, then you MUST tell everyone about it.  It’s the only honourable thing to do however much you want to keep your dirty little beauty secret to yourself.  I have been using the four gorgeous products in the La Mav Anti-Ageing Pack for 3 weeks now and 21 days later I’m still excited every morning and evening when it’s time to use them.  Excited ladies!!!

For me there is one stand-out, super star product in this beautiful collection, the Antioxidant Rich Nightly Repair Nectar.  This guy is my new BFF.  I hope I never have to sleep a night without this light, oily goodness on my skin because when I wake up in the morning, my skin actually looks rested and rejuvenated,  my skin looks better than when I went to bed!  I am not pulling your leg.  This serum actually does all of the things other products I have tried promise but fail to deliver on.  Stuff of miracles I’m telling you!

Also included are the Bio VA5 Wrinkle Smoothing Day Crème, Bio A7 Firming Eye Lotion and a sample of the Camiphora Extract Plumping serum {this will last for ages, I’ve been using it for 3 weeks and it still looks untouched!}.  The presentation box  is perfection, making this is a gorgeous collection that would be a 10/10 Mother’s Day gift.

La Mav products are 100% plant based, certified organic and cruelty free and are available at selected Health 2000 stores and other selected retail outlets.  Full list of retailers here



The Lipstick Project + Karen Murrell

The Lipstick Project + Karen Murrell

While many teenage girls were excited about makeup and waged battles with their parents about the appropriateness of their blue eyeshadow, I was entirely disinterested and more than likely at the beach surfing.  When I was heading out for the night my entire routine consisted of a quick application of Natural Glow {I am deadly serious btw} and some good old Maybelline Great Lash Mascara.  That.  Was.  It.  The sum total of my makeup prowess for years………and years.

Time and age have caught up with me and I’ve set myself a little goal this year, to take care of my skin with some great products and to get this makeup disaster under control before 36 turns into 40!  With the help of my wonderful Facebook community we quickly sorted the mascara situation.  A product showdown between Benefit They’re Real and Eye of Horus saw the EOH Goddess Mascara as my new lash fave.  Time to turn my attention elsewhere.

I am a lipstick virgin.  

It’s true.  I will do full face makeup {as best I know how!} and leave my lips completely bare.  I have never fallen in love with a shade, never lusted after those addictive little tubes of colour………but then that whole red lipstick thing happened a couple of years ago and a statement lip seemed to be something I might be able to get on board with.  Sadly, no lipstick wearing eventuated as just the thought of heading in-store and trying to pick ONE colour to fall in love with and feel confident and comfortable wearing was enough to send me running back to my Chapstick.

Until now.

Thanks to Karen Murrell Natural Lipsticks I am about to undergo a pretty outrageous form of therapy.  I’m not sure it’s ever been attempted before but beginning today, I am undergoing Full Lipstick Immersion.  Lipstick all day, every day for 7 days.  Now, for those of you unfamiliar with my daily routine {how can this be?  Twitter?  IG?  FB?  Do you not follow?}, I am a stay at home Mum.  I have a toddler and a 10 year old.  I do not live the glamorous lifestyle ya’ll.  So be prepared for lipstick whilst lawnmowing, lipstick whilst at rugby training, lipstick whilst cleaning off the porridge that’s stuck to the dining table……….  If I’m there, some gorgeous shade of cruelty free lipstick will be right there with me.

I’d love you to follow along this week on Instagram (@thebestnest) as I bumble along and hopefully get my grown-up pout rocking, even if I am a little late to the party lol.

If you fall in love with any of the shades I wear, head over to www.karenmurrell.com where you can shop onine or browse for a stockist in your region. 

Karen Murrell Lipstick Beauty Blogger New Zealand

*Product was provided for editorial consideration, all opinions are genuine and my own.

Beauty Review | Plantae Pacific Blue Lavender Cream Cleanser

Beauty Review | Plantae Pacific Blue Lavender Cream Cleanser

My.  Skin.  Is.  Ageing.  

Like me.  And that is awesome – I LOVE this season of my life.  Every year post 30 has gotten better and better but it does require a slightly different view on my daily skincare routine.  I tried various cream cleansers in my younger years and found the oil based formula left my young, well hydrated skin way too oily and clogged.  I think it’s important to remember to adjust what we are using as we age, some products will work for mature skin and others won’t.  Experiment if you’re able and your skin may thank you!

Plantae Pacific Blue Lavender Cream Cleanser is no supermarket aisle Clearasil-type astringent cleanser.  Much like the so-hot-right-now Micellar waters (review here), oil based cream cleansers contain lipids, fats, which are hydrophobic.  These repel water and attract dirt when applied to your skin, making it easier to remove these unwanted molecules with water.  

Plantae Organic Skincare Beauty blog New ZealandI jumped right in and began using this cleanser without reading the packaging first, and was slightly dismayed to find it wasn’t rinsing off well at all!  After reading the bottle, the box and the instructions included (!), I wiped the cleanser off with a warm cloth and immediately loved the way my skin felt – luxe, supple and hydrated with beautiful clean looking pores.  No nasty drying effect or taught, shiny skin.  

The base oil in this cleanser is certified organic sunflower seed oil, deeply conditioning (which is such a great word to describe this whole product really) and rich in Omega 6 and vitamins A, D, E.  Full of calming, natural super-extracts such as organic Pine Bark, Blackcurrant, Lavender, Orange Shea Butter but free from parabens, phenoxyethanol, mineral oils, PEGs, GMOs, SLS, artificial colours, synthetic fragrances and animal derived ingredients, Plantae’s Pacific Blue Lavender Cream Cleanser is a gorgeous option for those of us wanting a bit more out of our twice daily cleanse.

RRP $39.90 (100g) To locate your nearest stockist visit the Plantae website www.plantae.co.nz

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