Feature: Christmas Shopping Guide

Xmas Shopping Guide 2020 - Header

Last updated 2 November 2020

It’s that time of the year again – holiday releases are coming. I’ve been keeping an eye on some of these launches and, while some brands have slacked off a little in 2020 (understandable given how the pandemic has impacted everything), there are still a lot of great ones! From celebratory eyeshadow palettes to brilliant skincare sets – there’s so much to choose from.

It would be exhaustive to include absolutely everything, so this article mostly features things that I’m personally interested in trying or think would be a great gift option. Most, if not all, of these will be beauty related and available either in Australian stockists or online – all information which you will find here, of course.

Please note that this list is also being updated as new announcements are made so let me know if there’s a brand or release you think I should add in!

Now let’s start shopping!

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What type of moisturiser should I use? (Laneige’s Water Bank Collection)

Laneige Water Bank Collection Hydro Gel Moisture Cream Hydro Essence Review

This product was sent to me for review purposes. I was not paid and affiliate links are not used in this post.

Hydration is so important, but it is also something a lot of people seem confused about. I’ve had a surprising number of people confess that they don’t actually have a skincare routine and have never touched a moisturiser in their life: usually because they feel their skin is already oily or feel that face creams are too heavy.

So for today’s post, I wanted to do more than just write a review. Today, I want to unpack the Laneige Water Bank Collection and give my recommendations for when to use them. There are recommended skin types, but I’d like to discuss what the differences are between them, as well as giving suggestions for seasonal suitabilities.

I have three of the products on me but I want to talk about the whole range: this includes the Hydro Essence, Hydro Gel Moisturiser, Moisture Cream Moisturiser and the Moisture Cream Intensive Moisturiser. The first two have a lighter texture which is best for oily-leaning skin types and warmer weather, whilst the Moisture Cream (and the Intensive version) is better for dry skin and weather.

So, read on to find out more!

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Review: Layering Lip Bar in Stubborn Rose (Laneige)

Laneige Layering Lip Bar Stubborn Rose Kbeauty Review StyleKorean

This product was sent to me for review purposes. I was not paid for this post but please note that affiliate links are used on my blog. These go towards supporting Oh My Stellar and future content.

It’s no secret that I’m a massive fan of Laneige, and I’ve been pretty dedicated in trying out all of their lip bar range – from the original, matte to tint, I’m literally tried them all. Along with their cushion (which is still one of my top favourites to this day) their lip bar was my introduction to the brand; this is back when the original was still selling out at a lot of stores.

Since then, they have released a number of additional formulas with this same gradient concept and – in my opinion – these are far superior to the original (which had always been a bit patchy for me). This new Layering Lip Bar has an updated layering design for more consistent application and comes in both Cream and Matte formulas spread over 20 shades.

I received this product to review and definitely want to get a few more shades – especially to try out the matte formula too! It’s currently selling for USD$25.20 (on sale from USD$36) from the StyleKorean website – they actually stock quite a lot of Laniege top products, so I would recommend checking out the range in general.

If you’re keen on this lip bar, or want to know how it compares with the others, read on for this review!

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Review: Cream Skin Refiner (Laneige)

Laneige Cream Skin Refiner Toner & Moisturiser Kbeauty Review

This product was sent to me for review purposes. I was not paid and affiliate links are not used in this post.

As someone who has combination skin, it can be pretty difficult to balance the oil production on my skin. My t-zone tends to get very oily whilst the rest of my face is fairly normal. Because of this, I gravitate towards lightweight textures and formulas, but struggle to find something that is still going to hydrate properly during drier seasons.

Of course, who else would answer my needs but Laneige!

They are one of my favourite skincare brands and I use a lot of their products religiously. A few months ago (some time last year), they released their Cream Skin Refiner which was incredibly popular and has since developed into a complete line! I was fairly late to this bandwagon because it took a while for the product to finally reach Australia, but here it is!

Rebranded for the Australian market as the Cream Skin Toner & Moisturizer, this is essentially the Skin Refiner with a new name (which makes more sense for the Western market). It is currently available at Sephora Australia for AUD$41 or, of course, you can also search which ever stockist is relevant to your country (and, if you’re lucky, then you might have access to even more from the Cream Skin line).

Before you do though, let’s get into this review because I have been testing this out very thoroughly and have some great things to say!

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New Release: AKOCO and their Flawless Sets

Akoco Kbeauty Flawless Set Review

This product was sent to me for review purposes. I was not paid for this post but please note that affiliate links are used on my blog. These go towards supporting Oh My Stellar and future content.

The kbeauty industry is massive and it seems like every day that a new innovation in skincare is being launched, so it can be really hard to keep up. The great thing is that there are experts out there and they have put their time and effort into curating only the best of the best for you. The relatively new online store AKOCO has just launched with their boxed sets and – seriously – they are so well done. At this point in time, they have also released a number of different sets to target different skin concerns but the original is the Flawless Set.

To celebrate their launch, they sent me their Flawless Set and you would have seen me posting about this on Instagram – I just love the products that they’ve included in here. I only just noticed that I hadn’t written up an unboxing though (and this post is a good three months late for which I am so sorry). I was originally holding out to try everything first but realised that that’s going to take much too long so I’ll be sharing with you this anyway!

Although the Flawless Set is now out of stock, they do have their new Flawless Flaw-less set in stock (which targets acne prone skin) or, of course, you can always shop their products individually.

So – let’s get into it!

Akoco Kbeauty Flawless Set Review
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Dear Santa: Christmas Wishlist (Althea)

Althea Angels Christmas Wishlist

This post is sponsored by Althea but all chosen products and opinions expressed are my own. Affiliate links are not used in this post.

So we are at a point where Christmas is really close now and I have yet to really put together a list of things I want – partly because I don’t receive Christmas presents anyway (I’m an adult apparently) and also because I generally buy myself things I want rather than waiting for others to spoil me.

That all being said, I was approached by Althea to put together a short list of 10 things that would be on my Christmas Wishlist and, especially since I have been a bit absent from the k-beauty scene lately, this wasn’t hard to put together at all! There have been a bunch of super exciting releases and holiday packs that I’d missed – and now that means I need to get them.

So, click on to check out everything on my Althea Christmas Wishlist and, if you want to check them out – definitely do so! They carry a great range and also have their own brand (from which I highly recommend their Petal Velvet Powder and Petal Velvet Sunaway)

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Review: Two Tone Matte Lip Bar (Laneige)

Laneige Two Tone Matte Lip Bar Kbeauty Review

This product was sent to me by StyleKorean for review purposes. I was not paid for this post but please note that affiliate links are used on my blog. These go towards supporting Oh My Stellar and future content.

Laneige is one of my favourite Korean beauty brands but, strangely enough, I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with their two tone bars. I think the concept of them is genius and I love the colour range/packaging/promotional imagery of them all, but I do have some pet peeves with them as well. In fact, their Two Tone Eye Bar was such a massive disappointment for me that I literally never reached for it again. And yet, I do continue to buy and try every single new two tone bar that they release and I honestly think that I will continue anyway just so I can support their brand and the concept of these. I don’t want them to stop!

Their latest release is the Two Tone Matte Lip Bar and these are super new – in fact, I don’t think that I’ve seen many online stores carry this product yet (though please correct me if I’m wrong). However, StyleKorean does carry the entire collection and so they sent over two of the shades for me to try out. This is similar to the original Two Tone Lip Bar, but has a matte formula that is more in-line with make up trends. Whilst Western beauty is moving from matte to gloss, I feel like Korean beauty is moving from subtle tints to deeper mattes lately.

For this product, the two shades I chose to try out is Burgundy Mood and Powershoulder Pink – I purposefully chose one dark and one light shade so that I could see any differences in formula and application. Personally, I feel like this matte formula speaks to me more than the original and I definitely reach for them more! For people who like traditional matte bullet lipsticks but also love gradient lips and softer applications, this is going to be right up your alley!

So, read on for my full review.

Laneige Two Tone Matte Lip Bar Kbeauty Review

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Review: Layering Cover Cushion (Laneige)

Laneige Layering Cover Cushion Kbeauty StyleKorean Review

This product was sent to me by StyleKorean for review purposes. I was not paid for this post but please note that affiliate links are used on my blog. These go towards supporting Oh My Stellar and future content.

The promotional video for this Layering Cover Cushion sold me so quickly – I am a total Lee Sungkyung fangirl (though who doesn’t find that lady absolutely charming?) and I’m also a huge fan of Laniege products. In fact, their Whitening cushion is one of my HG products, along with IOPE, and I’ve lost count of how many of them I already have. I even developed a habit of collecting their limited edition holiday cases which is… perhaps a little detrimental to my wallet.

Either way, I was super keen to try out this cushion but, since it is a fairly new release, I hadn’t found many places online that sold it – and the new Sephora release in Australia only included the traditional cushion. When I was looking through the StyleKorean website though, I saw that they had it in stock and I jumped at the chance to review this!

Since I received this product close to the time I was going overseas, I actually brought this cushion with me on holidays and I used it while I was there (including cold New York weather, hot Floridian weather and even the freezing in Canada). I was really surprised at how well it had held up and, regardless of the mixed reviews that I’ve seen for this product, Laneige still remains at the top of my list!

This cushion is selling on StyleKorean for USD$25.12 (on sale from  USD$35.89). At the moment, only two of the shades are available (#13 and #11, so the paler shades) but the full, internationally available range consists of 8 shades – which is incredible for a Korean cushion!

So, click onto their website if you’d like to get the product yourself or read on to see my review first!

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Review: Two Tone Tint Bar (Laneige)

Laneige Two Tone Tint Bar BB Cosmetic Kbeauty

So I definitely have a thing for Laneige and I even up determined to try out every two toned product that they release – this two tone tint bar was no different and I was so excited when I saw this online. I have used their standard two tone bars before (and the eyeshadow bar, which was very disappointing) and although I liked the colour, I found that the formula tended to accent dry lips. With the introduction of the Two Tone Tint Lip Bar, I had hoped that this issue would be amended.

Similar to the previous product, this product has two colours and formulas – a coloured ‘tint’ side that has a more opaque and creamier consistency, and a balm side. These two sides are layered in a way to create a gradient lip effect in a single swipe.

I had watched a few YouTube reviews of this when it was first released and heard that the colours weren’t too different to each other, so I ended up choosing two shades that I liked most – a light pink and a deeper burgundy. Coincidentally, these were both ‘Sungkyung’s Choice’ – #03 Tint Mint and #08 Cherry Milk.

These Two Tone Tint Bars were sent to me by BB Cosmetic for review and you can also get them on their store for USD$21.78 – this includes free international shipping, and you can also get an additional 8% off with my code (which I don’t make money from, but will bring down that cart total): QAL3F6ZA8YZ

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Review: Lip Sleeping Mask (Laneige)

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask BB Cosmetic Kbeauty

Honestly, I first saw this Lip Sleeping Mask online and then in store when I was in Korea and I did want to try it (because it smells amazing) but it’s taken me so long to do this just because I wasn’t convinced that this would be an interesting product. In my eyes, I figured that it just looked like glorified Vaseline, and I’m not even a fan of Vaseline (which is basically petroleum oil jellied) except for in desperately dry times. However, when I was going through BB Cosmetic‘s website, I figured that I might as well give it a shot!

At the moment, they carry four different versions: Berry (the original one), Grapefruit, Apple and Vanilla (which are from the holiday release). I was pretty keen to try all of them, to be honest, but considering that BB Cosmetic were going to generously send me them for review, I chose the original Berry one – and will probably purchase the others at a later date just for the different scents.

Read on for my thoughts!

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