VS Sassoon Goddess Ultimate Steam Straightener

Well wasn’t I super lucky to be given the chance to trial the NEW VS Sassoon Goddess Ultimate Steam Straightener by none other than the beautiful people at Beauty Heaven! I submitted a video review to BH about this product and thought it was worth a dedicated blog post.

I must say this unique product introducing steam as a way to straighten hair intrigued me to no end! I was super excited by this innovation and couldn’t wait to try it. VS Sassoon claim that the steam is used to help open up the hair cuticle to provide you with a more effective straightening process and glossier hair. But it just doesn’t use steam to help straighten your hair, it also uses the regular heat plates so that you get the best results with these two methods of straightening hair. My hair is long and frizzy, so with VS Sassoon’s promise of unbeatable shine, sleek and manageability I knew I was in for a treat – I had high expectations.

Design

The straightener itself appears true to VS Sassoon’s standards – a deep purple case with gorgeous sparkles through it. It comes with a super handy heat protective mat and drawstring storage bag. The long swivel cord is another plus! However, because this straightener accommodates for steam and multiple functions, it’s is a lot heavier and bulkier than my usual straightener so I probably wouldn’t take it travelling with me. The extra wide plates make this straightener a thick-haired girl’s dream! A down-side to this is however, you can’t use this particular straightener for curling your hair.

With this straightener, you have the option of using just the heat plates, or you can opt in for the steam function as well. I love that the product gives you this versatility that other straighteners do not offer. The tongs also have a lock function to keep the straightener in place throughout storage or travelling to prevent damage. I love straighteners with a lock feature! The straightener also has 4 different heat settings from 170 degrees to 230 degrees, which is super important when catering for people with different hair types as everyone’s hair has different needs. This extends from the regular straightener which usually only includes 3 heat settings. I chose the 170 degrees setting because my hair long and frizzy, but still fine. I decided to opt for the light steam setting as well. I felt like these would be the best settings for my hair, especially when my ends are much drier than my roots or mid-lengths.

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To use the steam, you have to remove a water reservoir in the casing and add water. This process can be a little tricky. I feel like VS Sassoon should have included a little funnel-like product to help fill the reservoir. Once you turn on the straightener, you can choose 3 steam options: no steam, light steam or high steam. You do have to wait 2 minutes for the steam function to kick in though, so it does take longer than your average hair straightener to prepare for straightening, well in my case anyway.

The Styling

I do have to say, when using the steam my hair straightened fairly quickly, and the steam gave a super glossy sheen to my hair. I loved it, sleek and shiny! There are some negative though, sometimes the steam would leave big drops of hot water on my hair, instead of generating steam it generated hot water. Another issue was, my hair caught in between the plates a fair bit and caused my hair to sometimes break off. Thicker sections of hair was needed to prevent this but then it was harder and longer to straighten those sections.

My fine hair is a very ‘slippery’ type of hair and generally heat-styled hair does not last long in my world. But, the great thing about this straightener was that even after 2 days my hair was still pretty much straight and shiny. I’m not sure if that’s because of the steam, or the new heat protectant I was using but either way I was pleased.

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Overall, the style of my hair was the best thing I loved about the straightener. I had less flyaways, less frizz and it lasted a good amount of time.

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I Got My Face Tattooed!

I’ve been well aware from the start that my eyebrows are not symmetrical, and to combat this I usually just fill them in and redraw the shape in areas I need to tweak, as I’m sure many of you do. Also, the gods have graciously blessed me with super thin hair (yay!). Because of this, my eyebrows are also super fine, and this caused them to look patchy and sparse, when really I had a good amount of hair there, but they were too fine to make my brows look full. It seemed I was destined to wake up every morning and use various brow products to perfect my eyebrows and create those masterpiece arches. I became good at doing them, but naturally this took a good chunk out of my morning routine.

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Liebster Award

Many thanks to ProcrastiCaitlan for nominating me for a Liebster award. I’m super thrilled for my little blog to have a little recognition 🙂

Background to the award

The Liebster Award has been developed by bloggers, for bloggers! The origin of the name is German and can have several meanings: sweetheart, darling, beloved or boyfriend (?).

Legend has it that Liebster award was created to recognize and/or discover new bloggers. I think it has a good place in the blogosphere for facilitating the networking and cyber relationships between bloggers. It’s much like a chain letter. I think it’s a great way for exposure, and for your readers to learn a little more about yourself.

The simple rules to follow are:
1. Thank the blogger who presented the Liebster Award to you on your blog by and link back to their blog
2. Answer 11 questions posted by the presenter
3. Write 11 facts about yourself for your readers
4. Nominate 11 bloggers who you feel deserve this award. Let them know you have nominated them.
5. Ask your nominees 11 questions that you’ve come up with.

Here are my answers to ProcrastiCaitlan’s questions:

1. Do you think you could survive in a Zombie apocalypse?
Without a doubt, honestly, very seriously and in reality – NO. I have ZERO survival skills.

2. If you could have any super power, what would it be?
I would love it if I could make any given day have twice the amount of time – then I might be able to get all the stuff done that I need to get done, while also making sure I spend enough time with the people I love.

3. When you were young, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Originally, when I was really young I said a teacher or lawyer. Mum wanted me to be a journalist. So I became a Forensic Scientist.

4. Would you rather breathe underwater or be able to fly?
Definitely fly – so I can be closer to my little feather babies who have passed over the rainbow bridge ☹

5. Would you rather have a ‘rewind’ button in life or a ‘pause’ button?
Pause button – I don’t believe in wishing you did things differently. Everything happened for a reason, so I accept that and don’t feel the need to change anything in the past. And I’d love to pause because I’d really love the world to stop spinning sometimes so I can do all the things I need to.

6. A night in prison or a night in a haunted house?
Prison – I am very susceptible to scary movies and it plays with my head. I couldn’t imagine anything worse than being stuck in a haunted house for a night.

7. What is the first thing you reach for when you sit down to do your makeup?
Moisturiser! Get that hydration into ya!

8. What made you want to start a blog?
I felt like I had all these tips, opinions and experiences that I really wanted to share. Also, I am always looking to make new friends and knew this would be another great way to do so. It’s also a really good escape from my nerd life. A lot of the people I am surrounded by don’t care too much for beauty and so it’s hard to to talk about all the things I love about hair and makeup. The blog let’s me do so!

9. Special talent/party trick?
None really, but I can do that one eyebrow lift/eyebrow dance. Not very impressive.

10. Talk to animals or speak every known language?
Animals – everyone can learn to speak another language and there are tonnes of ways to communicate with humans. But no one has ever had the luxury of being able to have a conversation with an animal. I’d love to be able to do that. I’d love to ask them what they think of us as humans, and the world in general.

11. Would you rather have no internet for a month? or no phone?
No phone – if there was no internet I’d probably be really bad at researching, and it’s really important for my job. And I wouldn’t be able to blog for a month. Waaaaaaaaa!

11 Facts About Me

1. By the age of 10 I had already been to 7 different primary schools – my parents moved around a lot.
2. Ever since I was about 14 I wanted to be a Forensic Scientist and I am living my dream!
3. I have been with only one man in my life and many thanks to God, I’m still with him.
4. In Year 11, I got a scholarship to be sent to Japan for 3 weeks, including travelling. A week was spent living with a host family – it was the best experience of my high school life.
5. I absolutely cannot read Harry Potter without crying – I have a very strong emotional connection to the series.
6. I wanted to have babies by the age of 25 – now that I am 24, I can definitely NOT see that happening.
7. I have never met the majority of my extended family, even my Grandfather or Uncles – they are scattered across Europe.
8. My conception was a mistake – Haha!
9. In high school I was a State finalist in relay sprinting, and a Regional competitor in endurance running
10. I have been told I am too forgiving
11. I went through a 10 year battle with acne

My nominees:

I have enjoyed these blogs and were the first ones that came to mind.Hopefully you love them too!
Tried and Tested
Lily Not Louise
Fabulous and Fun Life
Rachel Beauty Style
How to Girl
Pastel Sparkles
Bottled Beauty
The Novice Life
Ziggy’s Zone
Zoe’s Beauty Escape
Bows and Pleats

MY 11 questions for my nominees

1. How would you describe your wardrobe?
2. You can only have one of the following things, which would you choose? Trust or love?
3. What is your greatest achievement?
4. Are you a Winter or Summer person?
5. What scares you the most and why?
6. Tell me about someone you really admire
7. What was the last book you read?
8. Do you believe in the paranormal?
9. Are you a sweet tooth or savoury tooth?
10. If you were to go to the movies alone, what would be your perfect movie to watch?
11. If you could trade lives with someone for a day, who would it be?

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Thanks again for the nomination ProcrastiCaitlan, this post was a bit of fun to write 🙂 I hope that you all learnt a bit more about me, and have come across some new blogs to follow!

In between my posts you can catch up with me on Instagram:

@thebeautyandthegeekau

Love Fel x

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Brand Spotlight: Vani-T Cosmetics

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Hello world!

After being exposed to a number of new brands at the Bloggers United AU event (read up on my recap here ). I was blown away by a relatively small eco-glamour cosmetics and tanning company, ‘Vani-T’. Their presentation was fantastic, and they demonstrated their products well. Their products ranged from makeup brushes (absolutely stunning by the way), to cosmetics, to all things tanning (including preparation and aftercare). Vani-T pride themselves on delivering what they call ‘eco-glamour’: their company is a fusion of ethics, luxury and performance. Their products are housed within absolutely stunning recyclable packaging, they are rich in natural and organic ingredients, they DO NOT conduct animal testing, and they do not contain sulfates, parabens, talc, bismuth or clay.

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The gorgeous pack included in our Bloggers United AU bag, including the tanning products

We were gifted with a generous package including a mineral colour lipstick, a mineral lip glaze, mineral colour crystals, a tanning mit, bronzing custard and self-tanner. After the event, we were also given the luxury of choosing another product from their range. I was lucky enough to be colour matched for their mineral powder foundation so I chose this.

This post will focus on the makeup from the company. I haven’t tried the tanning products yet, because lucky for me I’m still naturally bronzed from the Summer (thanks for giving me your European skin tone Mum & Dad) and I don’t need to use them. But I may use them in the Winter so stay tuned for a possible tanning post!

 Products:

Mineral Powder Foundation

I’ve always struggled to find a good mineral powder and recently gave up hope on them. They oxidise pretty bad on my skin, and they always gave me an itch on my face whenever wearing them. So when I was exposed to this brand and their mineral powder foundation, I saw it did not contain bismuth oxychloride. Also known as ‘synthetic pearl’ it is the main ingredient for most ‘mineral makeup’. This is because it gives a distinct shimmery, pearlescent finish and hides imperfections well. However, some people (like me) find bismuth oxychloride irritating. This is mostly due to the crystalline structure of the compound. These ‘crystals’ can poke at the skin, and can get stuck in the pores, where these pokes are sharper and can irritate the skin. So, when I heard that this powder did not contain bismuth oxychloride, I was immediately interested in trying it out. I was colour matched to ‘Almondine’, which I found to be the absolute perfect match for me. This was the product I asked to receive after the event and I was so happy with my choice!

This foundation is by far the best mineral powder foundation I’ve ever tried. Honestly, move over Nude By Nature. It blended it so well, and didn’t look patchy like some others I’ve tried. The coverage with this powder was awesome, yet the finish was so beautiful and natural; it really gave a nice glow to my skin. It does contain micro shimmer particles however so I know it’s not for everyone. I did not feel any irritation at all from using this mineral powder, which was a massive plus. This quickly became my favourite product from their range, it really exceeded my expectations and I’ll be so sad when I run out. I absolutely loved it.

 Mineral Lip Colour

*SQUEAL* Oh my, just look at that gorgeous packaging. Seriously. It looks more like an accessory than a lipstick. How beautiful is it!?

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Still in awe of the packaging, it’s enough to put a smile on any woman’s face

Okay, once I settled down from the excitement over the packaging, I tried out the lipstick and really liked it. I received the shade ‘La Femme”, which means ‘The Woman’ or ‘Wife’. It’s a really beautiful and natural muted pink/rose nude shade. It’s right on trend at the moment and hits the spot for me.

The lipstick is really creamy and feels nourishing and hydrating on the lips. It is infused with coconut oil, Vitamin E and aloe extract to kick in some intense hydration. After I ate some food, I found it left a really subtle pink stain on my lips which I actually really liked. This product is definitely going to become one of everyday staples in my makeup routine.

 Mineral Lip Glaze

Once again, I received a pink/rose lip gloss at the event that complimented the shade of the lipstick. This shade is called ‘Goddess’. This one has some fine gold shimmer through it to add a bit of sparkle and glamour. It has an organic base, with some coconut oil and castor oil for some added hydration. It is on the thicker side of lip gloss consistency, but it didn’t feel sticky on my lips which is one of my pet peeves! I can’t stand sticky lipgloss.

I love the applicator on this. You can twist open or close the applicator, keeping the lipgloss packaging clean. You can also use this to adjust the amount of product that comes out so that you are not wasting any either. Very clever Vani-T. However, I’m not a huge lipgloss wearer, and when I do wear them, they are mostly natural finishes with no shimmer. I think I will have to use this a little more to get comfortable again with wearing a lipgloss with such a high shine.

 Mineral Colour Crystals

This item is another new favourite of mine already! They are pretty much similar to MAC pigments. They are ultra fine velvety minerals and are 100% pigment (this definitely shows). You can get three finishes; Pearl, Shimmer or Matte. I received the colour ‘Swiss Chocolate’ which is a pearl pigment although most others received Bronze Fine (another beautiful colour).

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I absolutely love my pigment. It’s a rich, dark chocolate shade with some subtle hints of gold shimmer. Unfortunately I couldn’t capture the sparkle of this pigment, and the picture does not justify the finish. It’s so pretty! Being 100% pigment, you really don’t need a lot of product to get a really opaque finish; a little goes a looooooong way. It blends really well, and doesn’t give me a lot of fall out either. One thing I’ve read is that you can add water (or a setting spray) to your brush to use it as eyeliner. I’m going to give it a go with a bronze smokey eye I think. It’s a phenomenal product and I just want to purchase all of them!

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Vani-T cosmetics have really impressed me and exceeded my expectations. My absolute favourite product though was definitely the mineral powder, I absolutely loved it. Because we want to share the love with you all, Vani-T is offering my readers $20 off your online order AND free delivery when you spend $75 or more. If you’d like to take advantage of this offer, use the code:

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This code expires in 4 weeks time, so if you’d like to try them out head on over to their website and use my code for a discount!

Fel x

 

*I have received the products from a blogging event goody bag and have received no payment in return for my views
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Bloggers United AU Adelaide Event

Warning: This post will be very long and may evoke feelings of envy

We arrive at the Seawall Apartments overlooking Glenelg Beach. Sipping on some bubbles, I try to converse with as many Adelaide bloggers as I can, and we all await eagerly for the start of what is to be a day full of new insights, learning and socialising. Founders Nikita and Jasmine introduce Bloggers United AU and the values of their organisation. Basically, Australia is at a disadvantage when it comes to blogging events that bring together and cement it’s blogging community, and Bloggers United AU aims to fill that void. They organise events across Australia, with the help of State reps, to  bring together bloggers across many categories, and to demonstrate the incredible Aussie brands making a name for themselves in the Beauty/Lifestyle industry.

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About me, and why I am here!

My name is Felicia Anastasia Bardan, I am an Australian-Romanian, a Forensic Biologist and certified nerd! I am a full-time PhD student at The Australian Centre for Ancient DNA in Adelaide working in technologies that help identify historical human remains. I love reading, exploring new places or new ideas, and I am totally bird-obsessed! I have an incredibly supportive partner, and a Lovebird named Honey who will most likely feature in some of my blog posts, keep an eye for the little pecker!

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Isn’t she just a big ray of sunshine?

To start with, my blog will be about all my personal experiences with beauty products and services. I want you to join me on my journey through the beauty world. I want to you be here with me through every step, whether it be opening a product for the first time, finishing products I would literally die for, or lamenting with me when I experience something I don’t like. I want you guys to see it all!

Growing up, I was one of those ratty, endlessly dirty girls (my Dad’s nickname for me literally means ‘line of dirt’ in Romanian). I was always either outside messing around, being adventurous, or was inside reading – I love reading, it’s one of my big passions. It took me a while to really start exploring and using makeup, and when I did I was totally hooked straight away. As I started establishing myself in my studies and work, I quickly found that the world of beauty was my little slice of secluded Heaven on Earth, where I could escape the daily pressures and commitments of my scientific nerd life. As a scientist, experimenting came naturally to me, and I began to love the science behind the cosmetics industry. But behind all the ‘geekiness’, I’m a woman just like you. To put it simply, someone who just loves hair and makeup, and loves upping the glam factor to make my confidence levels spike.

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Hair & Makeup by Utopia of London salon, shot by Ann-Marie Ashley Photography

A big part of me also believes that beauty isn’t always superficial. It’s also about the way we think, and how we treat ourselves and others around us. I’ve grown up in a pretty competitive environment, girls always bringing other girls down for reasons that do not substantiate the effects of their judgment and criticism. I know this type of mentality can never be fully erased, but we can help to prevent other girls from falling into this trap. Beauty also isn’t all about a perfect brow game, full lashes, strong winged eyeliner or a poreless face. It’s not always so easy, some of us females deal with issues that can get in the way of our confidence, and I want to speak about them too!

“What’s in this blog for me”, you say? Well, I want to use this platform to deliver a delicate balance of sarcasm, reality, sass and beauty. I always aim for authenticity, integrity and honesty in my reviews and my experiences of products. I want to provide a place of service to you, with good intent and even better content! Mostly, I just want to inspire the every day woman to broaden their horizons in the world of beauty and help them to love themselves.

If this blog sounds like a bus you want a seat on, then get your ticket by following me, I’d love you along for the ride.

Fel x

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