6 Beauty Products I keep buying (and buying)

October 23 2016

The global beauty market is estimated to be worth about 265 billion dollars a year. Just let that sink in a moment. Beauty is an astronomic market and the result is that there are thousands upon thousands of products for us to consider. Finding ones that you luuuurve is hard and when you do, it’s like winning the skin lottery.

Well I’ve found six! Six sublime finds I keep buying and buying and couldn’t imagine life without. Today I’m sharing them with you!

1. Bioderma Sensibio H20 Micelle Solution


Beauty products I keep buying: Bioderma Sensibio H20 Micelle Solution, from $20.99 for 100ml

Micelle water could also be called miracle water and Bioderma are the magicians that invented it. A 101 on how it works: each drop of micelle solution is essentially a cluster of molecules. On the outside are water-loving cells and on the inside are water-hating (oil-loving) cells. When gently applied to your skin on a makeup remover pad, the drops split open, and the water-hating-oil-loving cells grab whatever is on your skin (i.e. makeup). When the pressure lifts (i.e. you remove the pad) the cells take with them what they’ve sucked up and then reform. *All hail science!* Micelle water is to regular face cleanser what a vacuum is to a broom. Better yet, it is about as gentle as a remover product could ever get and while in Australia it’s not as cheap as in it’s home country of France, a little goes a long way.

I was an instant convert to this product and will not, ever, everrrrrr go without it. Viva la France!

Get some: $2o.99 for 100ml, $31.99 for 250ml, $$42.99 for 500ml from Priceline.

2.Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentré.


Beauty products I keep buying: Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentré, $35 from Adore Beauty.

You know when you try what seems like a hundred different variations of a product (i.e. moisturiser) and when you find the one it’s like angels sing a perfect chorus of ‘where have you been my whole life’? That’s how it felt when I found Lait-Creme Concentré. Embryolisse’s cult product came into my life after a long period of troublesome skin and was one of the changes that made all the difference. This moisturiser is light, dries quickly and hits the perfect balance between super-hydrating and not-too-thick. It’s dermatologist recommend, not tested on animals, is free from any overpowering scent and there isn’t a a list of cult French pharmacie products around that doesn’t have baby on it. If your skin has been problematic or you’ve had trouble finding a moisturiser you love, I highly recommend giving this a try.

Get some: until recently it had been tricky to get in Australia, but Adore Beauty is now a stockist. $35 for a tube online with free shipping.

3. Kat Von D Tattoo Liner


Beauty products I keep buying: Kat Von D Tattoo liner, $28

If this eyeliner doesn’t connect you with the perfect wing, nothing will. Kat Von D’s ultra fine, texta-like tip gives such precision you feel like you’re finally being let in on a winged-eye secret that everyone has been keeping from you. It provides extremely consistent colour (there’s no winding up liquid liner into the tip, nor is the application of colour at all inconsistent). The harder your press the bolder the line and it hugs your lash for easy application. I read about this product and sought it out in the USA = instant addiction (and relief at ditching the other liquid liners I’d tried!)

Get some: Accessing this liner is one of the single best outcomes of Sephora coming to Australia. It’s the only stockist of Kat Von D down under at the moment and don’t worry if there’s no store near you, it’s available online in satin black and Mad Max brown for $28.

4. Revlon Colorburst Lip Crayon


Beauty products I keep buying: Revlon colorburst lip crayons, $17.99

Am I the only one who 1) finds a crayon infinitely easier for lipstick application than regularly shaped lippy and 2) feels like a totally child because of it? Either way, Revlon’s colour-rich lip crayons in matte and lacquer are super easy to use, don’t dry your lips out and are the right price ($18) to buy a bunch. The colour won’t last all day, but reapplying is as fun as colouring in!

Get some: stocked everywhere you find Revlon, including Priceline, $17.99.

5. Klorane Dry Shampoo


Beauty products I keep buying: Klorane Dry Shampoo, $14.99

The original and the best! I know I’m not the only person who found that dry shampoo changed their life. I can directly attribute a whole bunch of extra sleep and quicker get-readies to this miracle product. Spray it in, give it a couple of minutes then tzush (joosh?) or brush it out. The super fine powder soaks up any excess oil and adds volume to your roots. There’s a bunch of other products on the market now, but Klorane is still my fave. Klorane also have a version for dark hair as well as an extra oil-busting product.

Get some: now stocked at supermarkets and chemists, I still tend to buy from Priceline, $14.99

6. Benefit Instant Brow Pencil


Beauty products I keep buying: Benefit instant brow pencil has been replaced by the Goof Proof eyebrow pencil for the same price of $42.

This pencil is my in-between-brow-appointments saviour and super efficient to boot. The pencil has just the right amount of wax in it to keep everything in place over the course of the day and the brow brush on the opposite end of the pencil enables a quick and easy sculpt. It also came in a range of shades that catered for everyone. I am a bit terrified that this product has just been replaced/upgraded, but trust benefit to be THE masters of brow products and will be certainly giving their upgraded version a run.

Get some: the replacement Goof Proof Eyebrow Pencil is available online or from Benefit stockists (Mecca or Myer) for $42.

Are any of these products also in your must-have beauty kit? What products do you keep buying and buying? I’d love to hear about your faves in the comments below! 

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Review

October 18 2016

Back in July, the revolutionary Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer launched and the whole world inhaled with awe… then choked when they heard the price! I wrote a post talking about all the details that made it the best hair dryer in the world, confessed to wanting one very badly and declared if I bought one I wouldn’t tell anyone because of the ridonculous $700 price tag.

Well… time heals all wounds (or tax returns heal all credit card debts) and I’m ready to share that yes, Dyson’s hair dryer seriously haunted my dreams until I sheepishly showed up at my local department store and purchased the new hair gadget.

Dyson Sublime Finds

Oh yoo-hoo! 

Is it as amazing as they say?

In a word: yes. I find the design miles better to handle when blowdrying my hair than I ever did with a standard L-shaped hair dryer, not least of all because its so much lighter. The accessories (diffuser etc) are extraordinarily good, both in function and especially design, their ability to clip in and out and be spun around is totally seamless. I also don’t find blowdrying as hot, or as irritating as did before and my hair is in much better shape than it was previously.

To give the full round up of features and show you around the gadget, I recorded a video on facebook here!

But does it give you a better blow dry?

To answer this question I decided to put the Dyson Supersonic hair dryer to the test against my heat-blasting, super-powered Joh Bailey hair dryer by blowdrying one side of my hair with the Dyson and the other side with my original tool!

This be the results:

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Review

Original hair dryer on the left of the picture and Dyson on the right.

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Review

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer vs my old hair dryer: the pic on the left was the side blow dried with the Dyson and the image on my right is my ordinary hair dryer.

Verdict: decidedly smoother finish with the Dyson.

So is it worth the money?

Honestly… I’m still not sure! If someone offered me the opportunity to return the hairdryer and get my $700 back, I wouldn’t do it. I needed a new hair dryer, I’m for investing in quality, I love this hairdryer more than all the other options on the market and I’m glad that it’s my tool.

But is it twice as good as the GHD or Parlux (pretty widely considered to be the next best contenders) who are half the price? I’m not sure. I think we’re still paying the overheads for those billion engineers and squillion patents. Plus, as Christina from Hair Romance pointed out in her review, surely the next Dyson iteration is a battery-operated, entirely cordless option (like the stick-vacs) which would clearly be nek level and a change that would certainly get more people thinking about the switch!

So I’d say this: if the $$$ won’t keep you up at night, you won’t be disappointed with the hair dryer, it will live up to its name as the best product on the market. But how much is the best product on the market worth? If you’re already rocking a GHD or Parlux and hoping for something twice as good when you double your spend… perhaps hold off, unless there’s a design feature you really don’t like with your existing model. It is exceptional, but not miraculous.

Where can I get one?

It’s sold at our two major department stores, of which I’m recommending David Jones as it’s Femeconomy approved!

With that, my shiny golden locks and I are signing out!

What hair dryer do you use? Any GHD or Parlux users want to weigh in on what you love or don’t love about your products? Is the Dyson Supersonic hair dryer on your Christmas wish list? Always interested to hear what you’re thinking via the comments below! 

Loving: Leina Broughton

October 12 2016

I am an extremely fussy shopper. I have very particular taste in clothing and while I have learnt to embrace my curves, I find there’s plenty of stuff that doesn’t suit or simply doesn’t fit. I do love shopping, but I’ve had more than my fair share of exasperated trips to Westfield that yield no returns. I know I am not alone with this struggle!

I find workwear the most challenging. What we wear has a big impact on how we feel… and of course how we feel links directly with how confident, happy and productive we are. So I wasn’t surprised to find a correlation between my outfit vibes and how successful I am at work on a day to day basis. As a career-motivated gal with big dreams and ambition to match, there is no room in my schedule for feeling or delivering ‘meh’.

My workwear criteria is extensive. A sublime find for work must be:

  • comfortable,
  • flattering/curve friendly,
  • professional,
  • versatile,
  • easy to care for (my credit card weeps over my dry cleaning bills),
  • quality fabric,
  • classic shape and colour
  • but still stylish
  • and feminine
  • with an appropriate amount of fun!

I have my go-to brands and despite the desire for variety, I have rarely strayed far from what I know and trust. So when my friend and colleague, MB, introduced me to the gorgeous frocks of Leina Broughton, there were exclamations of ‘where has this brand been all my life!?’. I have become a fast and devoted fan of LB’s classic and versatile cuts, always sprinkled with the right amount of personality. Frocktober seemed the perfect time to share the frocks I’m loving most and with the knowledge that many of you are as particular as me when it comes to finding garments that are just right, it was time to pay forward the gift of Leina Broughton!

Leina Broughton Isabella

Frocked up in the LB Isabella dress, $249. Available in red and waterlily.

LB stocks sizes 8-18, the majority of garments are easy-care machine wash, no iron!  I get a bit funny buying online without trying on, but all the dresses I’ve bought have stretch in the fabric and super kind lines so have fit like a glove (each dress I’m wearing in this post is a size 14). My favourite frock and one of LB’s hallmark styles is Stella, which is reversible (my absolute favourite thing for getting great milage out of a dress!) and currently available in 6 finishes.

Leona Broughton Stella

Leina Broughton’s reversible Stella dress in red, black, indigo, cobalt and navy $265 (get $25 off with code ‘sublimefinds’!). I love that the higher boatneck gives a bit more professional polish, while the v-neck offers the ultimate flattering feel.

LB is based in Queensland on the Gold Coast, all garments are designed and manufactured in Australia (such a rarity!) plus the brand is Femeconomy endorsed. Given the rather apparent love affair I’m having with Leina Broughton the brand, I reached out to Leina Broughton the designer to ask her more about the story behind her namesake business!

Q: LB, thanks so much for taking some time out to share a bit of the story behind the fabulous designs that are Leina Broughton! Tell us, how did it all begin? 
A: The concept of creating a collection for the modern corporate woman stemmed right back to my days in Sydney where many of my friends were searching for this style and were caught somewhere between conservative suits and inappropriate dress options. It kick started a very natural design direction for me.
I moved from Sydney to Melbourne to work with Country Road on their startup team for Trenery and the desire to create my brand just grew stronger and stronger. After just one year I left Melbourne and moved to Gold Coast (2010) to start the label. A few years after starting the label I met Fleur and within 6 months we went into complete partnership. Fleur as Managing Director and me as Creative Director. When we met it was like an instant understanding that we could make a dynamo team and brand. Three years on and everything about our business is in flow, very exciting and unbelievably rewarding times.

Leina Broughton and Fleur Richardson – partners behind the Leina Broughton brand!

Q: The things I love most about your frocks are a) how flattering they are for curves, b) how easy they are to care for (machine wash, no iron is a godsend!) and c) how perfect they are for twirling! What’s front of mind for you when you’re designing? Is it the twirl factor? 
A: Thank you!! That really is music to our ears… First and foremost with design it is always about how a garment makes you feel. As women we have so many strange and complex insecurities going on, yet somehow when we put on something that feels like it was custom made for you, those emotions shift and we really shine. The amount of women who give us the feedback about how they receive so many compliments in our designs and I know that this is because it has shifted how they feel and that is something that just glows!
Putting that back into a design process, we look at what may be going on at the time of year, what events customers may be going to or just day to day schedules and how they want to feel. We are currently working on a December capsule collection and it is about creating options for work parties, Xmas parties and also just getting through work until the end of the year. There is an emotion of excitement, fun, celebration and we want to wear designs that are striking yet comfortable and can be styled easily for each occasion.
Sublime Finds Leina Broughton Twirl

Loving the twirl factor! This frock has sold out, but there’s a similar ballet wrap design here.

Q: An element that sets LB apart is being Australian designed and made. We hear lots about how much cheaper it is to manufacture clothing overseas, how important has it been to you to keep your operations in Aus?
A: One of the main reasons I chose Gold Coast initially (other than the incredible lifestyle!!) was that it has a strong manufacturing base. There is so much talk about overseas options that people forget to look in their own area and to also nurture the industry we have.
We develop all of our designs in-house to ensure that every garment is kept to the highest quality in finish and fit every time. Every design is carefully considered and created. Having our manufacturers literally around the corner means that we can thrive with our model of doing very limited runs of designs and getting our product to market quickly so we can ensure that designs are season appropriate. We also believe in keeping our local industry alive and feel very proud to be a part of that movement.

In season now: race wear! Gorgeous spring-infused prints perfect for Melbourne Cup! Here: the Jessie dress and the Adele dress in the Fuchsia Blossom print.

Q: I have no doubt your journey as entrepreneurs has had some ups and downs along the way! What’s been the most rewarding part of running Leina Broughton? 
A: Our team. We go beyond brand with how we operate and believe that what we have created is something very special. We support each other, we grow together, we connect with our amazing customers and are able to share all this through design.
Q: What’s next for LB?
A: Onwards and upwards! We have always offered a few evening options but next year we are expanding in this area so that it is part of our core offering and we are also releasing a small bridal capsule collection. The response to this has been really amazing and we can’t wait to share this in February 2017.
I can’t wait either! For those of you (like me…) who want to get in on the action now, team LB have also very kindly made an offer available especially for Sublime Finds readers:
Enter the code ‘sublimefinds’ at the checkout between
now and December 15 to receive $25 off your order! 
That’s a wrap! Hope you find as much joy among the LB frocks as I have!
Are you a very fussy discerning shopper like me? What do you look for in workwear? Are you an LB customer and fan? …Or are you discovering them for the first time? Hit me with your thoughts in the comments below! 

Exploring the new Pacific Fair!

October 6 2016

Last weekend I took myself on a shopping-themed road trip to explore the new and improved Pacific Fair! If your prevailing image of Pac Fair is salmon coloured exterior and paved outdoor mall, then it’s time for an update! It looks like this now:

New Pacific Fair

New and Improved: Pacific Fair in all it’s glory

The Centre

Pacific Fair has received a $670 million dollar upgrade to make it Queensland’s largest shopping centre and the 4th largest in Australia. Want to know what two-thirds of a billion dollars buys? The designers have absolutely thought outside the box – it is not like any shopping centre I’ve visited before, and suffice to say I make it my business to know the inside of shopping complexes wherever I go! While the new section is indeed a lush, sleek indoor complex, it opens up onto an incredible space called ‘The Resort’ which *surprise* looks and feels like high-end resort!


Pacific Fair’s ‘The Resort’ is very… resort-y!

You’re looking at sun lounges (there are lots of spots to sun yourself!) water features (completely free of gigantic goldfish, thank goodness), turfed areas where family lay around, semi-private bungalow-style huts with tables and chairs… all surrounded by a gigantic retail oasis. This space merges the extension with the original section and largely replaces the outdoor mall space.


Two stories of shopping surrounds The Resort

And it feels like holidays. While I didn’t lay around in the sun (because shops), I could totally envisage myself spending a whole day at the new Pac Fair, taking in some shopping, maybe a pedicure, lunch, meet up with friends on one of those gorgeous fuchsia lounges.


Pacific Fair – sun lounge central!

The Shops

As for the shops, Australia’s 4th biggest shopping centre has it all and then some. Pacific Fair has long been home to a Myer, the new section includes a David Jones. Target, Big W and Kmart all have real estate.  It’s also now home to some of the major international chains including H&M, Uniqlo and Zara (from Oct 20).

All the regular stores you’d expect are there too – in fact I have been trying to think of a store that isn’t there and have been struggling to think of one. There’s even a Mecca Cosmetica and a Mecca Maxima. Because so many of the stores are brand new or in new spots, they are exquisitely fitted out with the sleekest, cleanest and most lovely layouts around. The scale of the shopping centre also means that many stores are now flagship size so will have the full range of everything.


A peek inside the new section of Pacific Fair. Like you can see in the pic there are small rest areas everywhere – it’s perfect for plus-one’s who just want to sit and catch up on their YouTubes.

There’s also a whole lot of stores that are making their Queensland debut at Pacific Fair, most notably: Sephora + a bunch on the luxury front, including Kate Spade (!!), super luxury department store Harrolds, Parisian brand Sandro, Dion Lee, Ginger and Smart, Hermes, Givenchy, Furla, Sneakerboy and Christian Louboutin.


Will Work For Shoes: Christian Louboutin Pacific Fair in all it’s glory.


‘Visitors’ are able to collect a Privileges Pass from the Visitors Lounge or Customer Service desks which includes exclusive deals for more than 50 retailers! You are considered a ‘visitor’ if you can provide proof you live outside of the Gold coast (south of Coolangatta, west of Tamborine, north of Yatala).

The Kate Spade Gossip!

You heard it here first… we will have a Kate Spade outlet at Harbour Town before too long!!! Plus, we’ll have a store in Brisbane next year! #CouldNotBeMoreExcited #DangerZone

The Food

The final thing that must be mentioned is the food. The new food courts are amaaaazing. There is a fresh food market which true to name is packed with a mixture of  fresh bites to eat and take home options including sushi, fresh bread etc. The Patio is home to what you could kind of describe as a food court, but is so much better, incredibly funky mini restaurants which just ooze flavour as well as funky common areas with comfy seating and varying degrees of quiet and privacy. It is really very awesome and well worth stopping by.

The Wrap Up

So it’s a resoundingly positive review – I’d go as far to say I think this is one of the best shopping precincts in the world. I am so impressed with the outside-the-box thinking and fresh approach, they have truly brought a leisure feel to the shopping experience. I live 5 mins from Westfield Carindale (and love it!) and 15 mins from Brisbane City but know when I have lots of shopping to do or time to shop, I’ll make a day of it and head to Pacific Fair. I suggest if you’re looking for a new shopping experience, you give it a whirl too!

Have you been to Pacific Fair? Did you love it? Could you see yourself sunbaking during your retail therapy? What stores do you wish we had in Queensland or Australia that aren’t here yet? (Mine is JCrew. Sigh.) I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!