Muji Make Up Brushes

Hi there!

I'm not sure whether I'm going to go on another make up brush blogging spree but I thought I'd give these a quick mention since I've found them so good to use. 

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Muji Goat Hair Brush and the Portable Eye Color Brush

It's been quite a few months since I bought these as I bought them in HK earlier in the year.  Beckie told me to get them because she said they were very soft and worth the price. 

Turns out she was quite right!  Muji's brushes are very soft and great to use with powder products.  

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Muji Goat Hair Brush

I call this a blush brush because it's perfect for applying blush onto the apples of the cheeks. 
It can also be used to blend towards the ear, and can be used for light contouring as well. 

The goat hair brush is tapered at the end so application is soft yet precise.  So perfect! 

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Comparison: Ecotools blush brush, Muji and Real Techniques Multi Task brush 

Pros:

  • Very soft
  • No scratchiness
  • Made of goat and weasle hair, other brands would be a lot more exi
  • I can't remember the exact price but I remember it to be drugstore pricing 
  • Good quality and lightweight handle: handle made of maple and ferrule with aluminium
  • Tapered end retains shape
  • Bristles are perfectly shaped, no stray hairs
  • No shedding or bleeding
  • Great for applying pigmented powder blushes/bronzers
  • Can pick up a lot of product if you want to
  • Can be used to blend out product as well

Cons:

  • Not very densely packed, but it's good enough to me
  • Not as cheap as other drugstore brush brands (but much better quality)
  • Not much variety in their brush range 
  • Does not come with brush guard

Definitely recommend this brush if you like to have buildable coverage on your cheeks/contour.

I might have a look at their larger face brushes next time too.  When I first felt them they felt scratchier on the hand but I may have been mistaken.   

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The Eye Colour Brush

I think this eye colour brush was basically the only eye brush in their brush range so I was a bit sad because it's a really good brush!

The eye color brush is made of weasle and horse hair.  Like the goat hair brush, the handle is made of maple and ferrule with aluminium. 

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Comparison: Real Techniques base shadow, Muji eye colour, Sigma eye shading E55, MAC 213

Pros:

  • Tapered end
  • Structured but still soft 
  • Not scratchy 
  • Packs on powder eyeshadow well 
  • You can blend a little bit with it too 
  • Inexpensive, I think it was under or around $10AUD

Cons:

  • They need more variety in their eye brush range
  • Travel size handle, which is good and bad, it would be for them to have a version with a longer handle too

The eye brush is a very basic brush that is useful to have in anyone's collection. 

Highly recommend Muji brushes, especially if you want natural hair brushes but are on a budget :)

Laneige Pure Radiant Shadow in No.2 Shine Gold

Let the hunt for the perfect gold eyeshadow/eyeshadow palette continue.  

While I was in HK I swatched these Laneige e/s and was pleasantly surprised at the quality of this new range.  

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I was torn between Shine Gold and Urban Beige, but I chose the gold palette at the end since it looked more shimmery.  

The packaging itself is so sturdy and I love the muted metallic box that it comes in.  
The palette itself has an acrylic surface, and the plastic is thick but lightweight. 

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I was so drawn to the gold shade I just couldn't resist eheh

Top Right: A pearlescent white which is great for highlighting the brow bone and inner eye corners
Top Left: Fine gold glitter, not gritty at all
Bottom Right: Warm taupey shade 
Bottom Left: Dark brown with satin finish and reddish brown micro-shimmers throughout 

Korean/Japanese e/s are definitely not as pigmented as Western brands, but this is helpful when you are worried about over-application. 

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The photo is a bit dark!  I think I swatched these from top left, bottom left, top right, bottom right

Pros:

  • Very smooth texture
  • Blends like butter
  • Very little powderiness 
  • Slightly buildable pigmentation
  • Foolproof application 
  • Packaging is sturdy but lightweight
  • The finish gives you this glistening water-like eye look
  • FInished look is a very pretty light smokey look
  • Suitable for both cool and warm toned skin 
  • I didn't notice any fading when applied over eye primer (I never use e/s without eye primer)
  • Not too exi, decently priced at about $25-30AUD

Cons:

  • Bottom shades don't show up on the eyes like it does in the pan
  • Not as pigmented as some may like 
  • People that don't like shimmery e/s should stay away 
  • Once you start blending, the e/s seem to all melt into one color 
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My EOTD using Shine Gold.  It has such a glistening finish I love it ^^

Definitely recommend trying these but I don't think all e/s are of the same quality across different ranges and brands.  
Korean make up has definitely come a long way since 5 years ago and i'm looking forward to their new products :) 

Until next time that's all for now folks! 

Rouge D'Armani Sheers in 603 Bougainvillea

Could there be a more wearable purple lippy that could exist?!?! 

I have to confess I got owned by my friend while I was in Sydney last weekend when she showed me a gorgeous purple lippy she recently purchased.    

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All these dark plum, burgundy shades are trending overseas where it is transitioning into Winter and it has got me wanting Winter back more than ever! 

Unfortunately it is Summer, well Sprummer is what we call it here because there is no Spring - It goes from Winter to Summer pretty much overnight!  

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Rouge D'Armani Sheers in 603 is a new lipstick color in the Sheers line. 

603 is actually part of the Bright Ribbons range for Summer.  It was released overseas in the middle of the year but it is being sold in Australia now (maybe it was on sale then but it's still available now?).  

603 is great for us Aussies that want a bit of purple in their lives but still want to keep it Summer appropriate :D 

It looks so scary with its deep purple color but because of its semi sheer application it is actually such a wearable color for all seasons! 

You can check out my previous post about another sheer lipstick I bought here.

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I have so much trouble capturing the shade of these Sheer lipsticks!  

Pros:

  • The description of these lippies are very accurate : creamy, light, translucent and hydrating like a balm
  • Buildable pigmentation 
  • Wearable purple shade
  • Contains micro-shimmers but it is not visible on the lips 
  • Lips do not look crazy purple - it just shows up pinky purple and lets a bit of your natural lip color show through 
  • Great lasting power- creates a nice stain to the lips
  • I can eat, and drink and still have a bit left after all that 
  • Wears evenly and low maintenance
  • Removes very easily with water-based make up remover, or a few more drinks of water ahaha 
  • Gloss finish that does not make the lips look too oily
  • Very comfortable 
  • Packaging is so sleek and love the magnetic closure mechanism 
  • Decent size product 
  • Moisturizing formula 
  • Unscented

Cons:

  • Not strong pigmentation - color is not exactly the same on the lips as it is in the packaging 
  • People who want creamy pigmented lipstick formulas probably won't like the Sheers range
  • I think this is more sheer than the other shade I have in the Sheers range
  • Not cheap, especially in Australia - it is $52AUD and I know it is at least $7 cheaper overseas
  • I don't think pigmentation would be great for the lighter shades - it may just look like lip balm

People who want to experiment with colors, but want a more wearable, low maintenance yet fun look would really love the Sheers range.  

I'm not too daring with lip shades but I am in love with 603 just like I am with 500!  

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My lippy swatch taken from my IG account.  

I don't think it's that bright in real life, it depends on lighting but it generally deepens the color of my lips more than in brightens.  

Until next time that's all for now folks :) 

Engaged!

Hello, 

I'm just taking a mini break from my usual make up posts just to share a special moment :) 

I'm engaged!!  Words can't describe - actually even my face can't even describe how happy and excited I am to have stepped into this new chapter of my life with my boyfriend/husband-to-be/best friend/soulmate/other half/better half ^_______^

My friends and relatives on facebook would have already seen these photos but I thought I'd share them here as well. 

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I thought we were just taking a trip to Sydney to visit his good friend and his fiance but it is obvious now that he and them both had other ideas in mind. 

I won't go into all the nitty bitty details but he popped the question at sunset and after some tears and smiles and gasps I finally said yes in what seemed like 2 hours to him ahaha

I think I was numb/excited/shocked/surprised for the whole night so I don't think I had much emotions I must admit!  I guess I've proven that I'm not the quickest to react to things around me.   

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We went home after so everyone could rest, and headed back out later to have some dinner.  

Had to share it with mud crabby - my favorite! 

The rest of the trip was very relaxing, had a good catch up and had lots of yummy food. 

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And the ring :)

Thank you to all of those who helped make this day possible, and those of you who congratulated me.  

I'm still on a high and have a lot of planning ahead but I'm looking forward to it!  

Etude House Dr. Mascara Fixer for Perfect Lash

Hello!

I've been pretty quiet in the mascara department all thanks to Beckie introducing me to the Younique mascara system. Now there isn't much I ask for in a mascara apart from it holding a curl! Younique just finishes everything off for me haha (you can see my review here)

I do have a strange problem that I haven't been able to fix though.  My mascara always smudges and flakes through the day, even the ones that no one else has issues with.  I've been trying to figure out a way to battle this problem and I think I found my saviour! 

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Etude House Dr. Mascara Fixer 

I found this amazing mascara fixer/primer in HK.  My sister kept telling me to try it because I needed something that was going to help hold up my lash extensions at the time, that would also be easy to wash off (turns out this is anything but easy to wash off lol).

Its claims: 

  • Volume up
  • Curl fix
  • Coating fix (waterproofing)
  • Conditions lashes with black food extracts 

Ingredients:

Isododecane, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, VP/Eicosene Copolymer, Cyclopentasiloxane, Silica, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Synthetic wax, Ethylene/Propylene Copolymer, Propylene Carbonate, Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Triethoxycaprylylsilane [+/- (May contain) Iron Oxides(CI 77499, CI 77492, Ci 77491), Black 2 (CI 77266), Mica]

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The brush is a typical bristle brush and the product comes out clear 

Pros:

  • Very inexpensive, I think it was only ~$90HKD
  • Sets any mascara to a budgeproof, smudgeproof, waterproof finish 
  • Really incredible for use with lower lashes - this is where my mascara usually smudges 
  • Lightweight squeeze-style tube - you can finish off the product with minimal wastage
  • Can be used as a finishing coat
  • Can be used as a primer before mascara application
  • Holds a curl well - nearly for the whole day, great for humid situations
  • Builds volume 
  • Can be built up with several coats without clumping 
  • Saves a flopped lash caused by crappy mascaras that don't hold curls well 

Cons:

  • Does not dry completely transparent if over-applied
  • Can leave lashes with a white looking cast (easily fixed by applying a thin coat of mascara on top)
  • Can make mascara go clumpy if not applied with care 
  • Does not build length, but that's ok because it didn't say it would 
  • I don't feel like it can create a curl although some people think it does 
  • Difficult to remove even with my cleansing oil that can usually remove even Fasio mascaras easily
  • Water based removers will not remove this
  • Definitely do NOT recommend to use this with lash extensions!  
  • Does not hold a curl for the entire day, but still better than not using it at all
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Some looks with my staple mascaras. 

I used to be really lazy with mascara application but it seems I'm taking more care with it now. 

I used the base WP mascara, then the Younique system and finish with the fixer. 
It ends up being around 4-6 coats in total but it's well worth it but it is much more noticeable.  

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Another look without using Younique mascara.  My lashes stayed curled the whole day without a problem. Now the big test is whether it will survive the 40+ degree heat of Australia!  I will find out in a few months time. 

Until then that's all for now folks!

Indeed Labs Pepta-Bright Intense Brightening Treatment

Hello!  Today I'm taking a step back to review this 30mL tube of brightening serum that I used over 3-4 months. 

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Indeed Labs Pepta-Bright Fade to Bright Brightening Serum 

This serum claims to deliver peptide based skin brightening.  They advertise it as a cream serum which is true.  The product claims to "reduce the intensitiy of dark spots, promoting overall skin clarity and brightness".

The idea about peptide based skincare is that it tricks the skin into producing more collagen.  When collagen breaks down, it turns into small peptides which signal the skin to start making new collagen.  More collagen means healthier skin.

But does this technology really work in this cream serum?

Ingredients: 

Water, Caprylic/capric triglyceride, dimethyl isosorbide, isodecyl neopentanoate, isononyl isononanoate, propanediol, arachidyl alcohol, undecylenoyl phenylalanine, sodium lactate, behenyl alcohol, glyceryl stearate, lactic acid, cetearyl alcohol, octadecenenedioic acid, polyacrylate-13, phenylethyl recorcinol, dimethylmethoxychromanyl palmitate, nonapeptide-1, sodium hyalurate, Peg-11 stearate, triethanolamine, arachidyl glucoside, polysorbate 20, phenoxyethanol, polyisobutene, caprylyl glycol, disodium EDTA, chlorphenesin, xanthan gum, dextran

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Pepta-bright is a cream-serum.  The texture is quite rich but it does absorb into the skin

Pros:

  • Creamy formula is easy to spread and you only need a small drop to apply to the problems areas
  • Claims to help with hyperpigmentation
  • Claims to help with brightening
  • Did help with my hyperpigmentation mildly by 2/3 way through the tube
  • I did notice a slight brightening effect, but only very slight
  • 30mL lasted me 3-4 months AM+PM application
  • Decent price at around $25AUD on sale (Priceline always has sales on Indeed Lab products)
  • Hygienic packaging and I was able to empty the tube without cutting it

Cons:

  • It has a very odd smell which I wasn't fond of at all
  • I think the creamy texture clogged up the pores near my nose, my sister noticed the same thing happening to her
  • I think you need to use 2 tubes to get the full effect.  Changes do not occur immediately
  • I think people with oily skin should stay away from this product

I think Fade to bright did work, but I won't repurchase because of the strange smell and also because of the fact that it clogged up my pores and I don't even have oily skin in the first place.

You may have noticed I didn't include any skin photos because I never really see a big difference.  I'm pretty happy if my freckles fade enough not to be noticed easily in photos, and if my skin can look brighter/more translucent that's even better. I honestly think there is no quick fix for whitening/brightening/fading and you need to use it consistently for many years along with sun protection before any difference can be seen.       

I prefer La Roche Posay for drugstore-grade whitening serum (review here) if I were to stick to the $20-30AUD price range.  I have actually gone back to this one and am still pretty happy with it.  Unfortunately I haven't found any high end product good enough to make me want to repurchase, but I have a few that I'm going to try and see :)  

Until next time that's all for now folks!

Beauty Blender + Solid Blender Cleanser Review

Hello, do you notice a difference in my website? I hope you like it, or gradually get used to it if you don't.

As for today's post - I'm feeling kind of embarrassed to be typing up this post because it is so outdated! My colleague helped me buy this along with the Urban Decay setting spray while she was in America last year but I only opened it 3 months ago ><

I have a tonne of face brushes that I switch regularly so this sponge sat in a little corner for a long time!

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The ever so famous Original Beauty Blender

I was surprised at how small it was when I got it, and was interested to know how big little sponge can actually get.

For those that read my blog regularly (and thanks so much for following!), you would know that I'm not a foundation user so I can't really comment on how well it applies foundation.

I do use under-eye concealer regularly though so all my experiences are based on application to the under eye area :)

Applying under eye concealer is tricky because you want good coverage but a little too much will cause caking and product settling into fine lines.

I find that brushes can leave streaks and if you don't blend carefully the concealer can start to look patchy, especially if the concealer sets quickly.

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Wet beauty blender, as all of you would know expands in size

Pros:

  • The shape is great for all over the face - I use the pointy part mainly and it fits really well into the contours
  • You can use it multiple times before you wash it (I'm bad and use it for a week ><)
  • Can be used slightly damp without it being fully expanded
  • Makes applying base make up a lot quicker when it is fully expanded
  • You don't get streak marks with this
  • I love just bouncing this on my face, it's very therapeutic and helps the blood circulation around my eyes ehehe
  • You do end up with a flawless complexion
  • Somehow manages to keep the right amount of product on your face, if I accidentally over-apply concealer it corrects that :O
  • Can use it to get rid of fall, either with a little bit of extra concealer or just on its own damp
  • I found that I could correct under eye concealer that may have settled in my fine lines with it
  • Gently patting wet blender on the face can get rid of an over-powdered look
  • People say that you can use setting powder with it, but I think I still prefer a fluffy brush
  • Washes very clean if used with a proper blush cleanser
  • After you clean it, you don't have to wait for it to dry before you use it, unlike with brushes
  • Plastic container can be used for storage, good idea to keep it
  • Latex free

Cons:

  • Color bleeds for a few washes, but this does not transfer onto the face
  • Expensive for a sponge that you will need to replace before you need to replace a brush (~$25AUD)
  • Difficult to find if you live in Australia, have to buy online
  • Need to make sure you squeeze as much excess water out as possible
  • Does not clean well with regular hand wash or certain brush cleaners

This little miracle sponge lives up to its expectations and it's definitely worth having even if you aren't a make up junky because it's easy to use and fuss free.

The only question is are there any real dupes out there?

The local drugstore ones won't cut it, but my sister said the Japanese version sold at Sasa is pretty much exactly the same, and also the Stila one works really well as well.  I shall get around to trying some out sometime and see :)

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The Solid Blender Cleanser

I heard that the Beauty Blender is difficult to clean with regular brush cleanser or your hand soap so I decided to give this a try.
Before this brush cleaner, I only used moisturising and anti-bacterial hand soap.  For a while I added olive oil but I got too lazy.

You can see my brush cleaning routine here.

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The solid cleanser comes in a soap form and has a soap rack included also

Ingredients:

Sodium Palmate, Sodium Palm Kernelate, Water, Glycerin, Coconut Acid, Titanium Dioxide, Palmitic Acid, Lavender Fragrance, Sodium Chloride, Tetrasodium EDTA, Tetrasodium Etidoronate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder

Pros:

  • Travel friendly packaging
  • Soap rack can be used either side: - Edges facing up to hug soap to stop the soap from sliding around, - Edges facing down to elevate the soap while drying
  • Only need a small amount for each brush
  • Lathers up very nicely for a deep clean
  • Removes very tough stains and eyeliner as well
  • Gentle on all types of bristles
  • Cleans the beauty blender extremely well, I don't even see residue
  • Has a light lavender smell that is not overpowering
  • Will last me a long time because I mainly clean my brushes used with concealer, cream shadow or face powder with it
  • Dries quickly overnight
  • Lid is a screw top so it won't disassemble itself if you chuck it in your luggage

Cons:

  • Not cheap but not expensive for a brush cleanser at ~22AUD
  • Color from the product that it is cleanser can remain on the soap which is annoying
  • There is still a small hygiene problem because some of the residue from the brushes can remain on the surface of the soap - It doesn't really matter because once you wet it again and make a lather with the brush, the bacteria is washed off anyway
  • Not a pretty sight when the soap turns from white to a beigey color...

With the cons, I know most people would say "just wash the soap afterwards"!
But I prefer not to wet the whole entire bar of soap because this makes it more messy, and takes longer to dry.
You also waste a lot of soap (and money) if you do that.
This blender cleanser is very reliable and will get rid of any stubborn residue from your brushes/sponge.  Recommend!

Until next time that's all for now folks :)

My current makeup storage + review on acrylic drawers from Catch of the Day

Hello! I'm excited to show you my most updated make up storage! I must admit my collection isn't the most exciting compared to others out there, but nevertheless one can never get enough ideas to play with right?

You won't see any skincare here because they live in my bathroom vanity.

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My newest additions are the drawers on the left!

My bf regretfully but kindly told me about these drawers that were on sale at CatchOfTheDay (COTD) for only $39AUD exc. shipping.

Before this sale, Aldi had some for $69.99AUD.  It had a nice height to it but had a metal frame.

Muji is also an another option but I never have luggage space or Kg's left, and shipping it is also a recipe for disaster.

Most other ones cost $100-200AUD for a full sized one but the quality is much better and this is reflected through its weight.

Why the hype about acrylic drawers?

I like them because they are hard wearing, don't shatter as easily as glass and don't yellow like normal plastic.

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My 6 - drawer acrylic organisers

The dimension of these drawers are 27cm x 21cm x 24cm (HxWxD), it is slightly shorter than A4 paper.

These drawers aren't the best quality but they do the job and my cosmetics fit quite comfortably in them.

I 'm happy I bought 2 because I need that much and even if I get Ikea drawers down the track, I would still want to keep these on the table.

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Here is one of my drawers, I put my single e/s in here .

It would probably fit 5 x 5 MAC pots in there and you can have a stack of 2 comfortably.

It won't stack Armani, Jill Stuart or Maybelline Color Tattoos though.

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It houses naked palettes in a stack of 2 cosily, but no more

Pros:

  • 6 relatively spacious drawers
  • Drawers themselves are sturdy and have no give
  • Tall enough to stack Nars blushes, lip pencils, mascaras and thin palettes on top of each other
  • There is enough drawer depth to make it functional, about 4cm measured from inside
  • Organiser becomes more sturdy with weight, so I can fill up the drawers without worrying about it breaking
  • The drawers run along the support frame smoothly
  • I like how it has proper drawer handles - keeps the dust out better
  • Drawer units stack comfortably on top of each other
  • Has 4 transparent rubber grips on the bottom so it won't move around
  • Units are bubble wrapped inside the box, and bubble wrapped again around the box.  Any spare space was filled with air pillows
  • Like with all my other acrylic drawers, these don't yellow over time unlike normal plastic does

Cons:

  • You pay for what you get - You won't get a $100+ product for only $39, they will have cheaped out in some way - In the case of these drawers they cheaped out on frame thickness and refined edges
  • Would have been better if the drawers, or even 1 drawer was taller so I could put larger products in as well
  • Although the drawers themselves are sturdy, they aren't as thick as my other acrylic drawers
  • Corners of the frame are not rounded off and are quite sharp
  • The frame has some give when you squeeze the sides or add weight at the top because it is not very thick
  • It will make a bit of squeak when you squeeze the sides, but does not make sounds when you open and close the drawers
  • Because the acrylic frame is not very thick, I am reluctant to stack these as it may bend or break it over time
  • One of them came with a crack at the top right corner :( Luckily this did not affect its structural integrity

For $39AUD this is probably the cheapest 6 drawer unit you will find anywhere.

They aren't the highest quality of acrylic units, and will give a little if you push at it, but the frame isn't so thin that it would collapse over time.

I'm happy with them still.  For the price you pay you can save a lot of money and spend it on other stuff instead, or just save it :D

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This old Models Prefer organiser used to live in my bathroom, but it fits perfectly on top of my drawer units!

I remember it was around $30AUD and came with a mirror that I took off.  After 3 years it still looks good as new.

The quality of this one is very good with thick acrylic and rounded edges.  It's quite heavy too.

My used brushes and miscellaneous things that are too tall to put in the drawers live here.

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My old trusty Ikea wooden drawer unit

This is also 3 years old and still going strong.  I think it was $30-40AUD

I believe this was from the Moppe range but I can't find them anywhere on the Ikea website :(

The middle has drooped a little but it's still doing well.

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Eyeshadow palette storage

I was originally going to lay them flat in the acrylic drawers but realised it wasn't going to work.

Storing them vertically means you can easily see everything and every palette gets an equal chance at being picked hehe

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Lipsticks

My lipsticks live in one of the wooden drawers to keep the dust off them.  My bigger lip pencils live in the acrylic drawers.

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My glass brush jar and old acrylic drawers

I love my glass brush jar ^^ These jars are really expensive if you buy them at a kitchen/home store.

I bought them at a discount homeware place at about $30AUD around a year ago, but haven't seen them since :(

I like to have a lid on my brush holder so dust doesn't get in and I can also see all my brushes in the jar too.

There is also a normal cylinder shape one that I keep in the bathroom for my face brushes.

On the right are some old acrylic drawers I keep in the room because they are still very useful :)

So that's it!  Hope this gives you a few more ideas for your own storage.

Until next time that's all for now folks!