Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Photo of the Weekend: Painting - Part 3. Happy New Year and Merry Christmas!

Christmas Night

Hi guys! Who would have guessed I'd go to another master class in painting so soon, ha? Well, I really wanted to paint some Christmas-y or New Year's eve themed painting and I wanted to do it before the actual New Year and Christmas so that I could hang it somewhere at home for holidays.

I really wanted to capture this atmosphere of holidays in the air: the quiet joy and peace of a Christmas starry night with all the holiday lights decorating the homes and Christmas trees, and all families gathered together at home to celebrate this glorious day. I really like how the stillness of the winter frosty weather and the absence of wind echoes that warm quiet yet joyful feeling. I also like how the church is in the center of the composition here reminding us that Christmas is all about Christ and His birth, and there are lights on at church, which means that its doors are always open to anyone anytime, especially on Christmas. I like it that in this picture there is a lot to look at and to watch and really think and meditate on, and that even though it is winter, you get a warm cozy feeling when looking at it.

That's exactly what I wanted in my painting, so when I found the illustration for it I knew I had to paint it. It was perfect. However, I didn't expect I'd be able to do it in just 4 hours, and I wasn't sure I'd cope, because it is the most complicated painting of all I've done so far. But I'm happy I was brave enough to try, because I enjoyed painting it so-so-so much and I do like the end result, even though it's not perfect and not nearly as amazing looking as the original. I still like it though.

Below is a short story in photos of how it came to realization. Hope you enjoy it :).

"I'm not really sure if I can make it, but I have to try. Where do I start from now?"

Yaaay! I did it!

It's drying now and waiting to go home :)

I hope you are having a great day and preparation for the holidays. I hope that in all the rush and stress of trying to complete many things you are actually enjoying your Christmas and New Year holidays period. Happy holidays!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm: Review

Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm

Hi guys. I don't think I've ever done any skincare posts on my blog yet, so I thought it would be nice to write one.

Today, I want to share my thoughts on the Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm.

Now if you are like me and you aren't really familiar (or wasn't familiar, I should say) with what a cleansing balm is and you never really used it, here's what it is in a nutshell. It is a very thick product made of natural oils and waxes that deep cleanses your skin without drying it out and stripping it off of all its natural moisture.

Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm

Here's how you use it. In a jar it looks and feels like a very thick waxy cream, but once you put it on your moist face or wet hands first, if you prefer, and spread it out, it starts emulsifying and turns into a liquid-y cream that dissolves all impurities and makeup and cleanses your face in that way. After massaging it into your face for a while you can take a muslin cloth (that is included by the way, as well as a cute little spatula), put it under running warm water, squeeze out the excess, and wipe away the product that's left on your skin. This way, you're not only removing the product residue but also doing a light exfoliation. This is how you use any cleansing balm.

Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm

I have to admit I am very late in this whole cleansing balm thing wagon, and I only discovered this type of product a couple of month ago, and it was a revelation for my dry sensitive skin. The Elemis cleansing balm is the only one I've tried so far, so I have nothing to compare it with.

However, I think it is an amazing product. It smells heavenly, just the smell alone brings me back to life. I have to admit, at first I was skeptical about how deeply some kind of waxes and oils can cleanse my skin deep into the pores and if it would be sufficient enough at all, and how it is going to feel. Well, it IS more than sufficient. It does cleanse deeply without leaving you feeling greasy or dry. It feels so fresh after you cleanse your skin with this, I cannot even tell you. If you hate your evening skincare routine and all that cleansing, with this balm you'll love it and will be looking forward to it. It becomes almost like a mini-treatment ritual at the end of the day when you can relax and let go of all the troubles and stress. My skin feels great after this: fresh, clean and soft. So I would totally recommend it, especially if your skin is as capricious, dry and prone to all kinds of irritations and spontaneous breakouts as mine. I was very pleasantly surprised at how well my skin responds to this product.

One other thing I want to mention. I do remove my makeup with a micellar cleansing water first, so I mainly use this balm for actual cleansing rather than makeup removal. However, I did try to remove my makeup with it too a couple of times just for the sake of this review. And I can tell you, it does the job really well, I don't see it leaving any trace of makeup, including mascara, after using it. And even though my preferred method is still a two-step cleansing process (first - makeup removal and second - actual deep cleansing), I can see it being a good product for those lazy one-step cleansing days.

As to the ingredients details and all that jazz, you can read it on the site here. That's where I bought it from. No need to say, it has a lot of good stuff for your skin. I just don't want to repeat all the official claims in the description to this product.

Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm

Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm: Ingredients

I hope this information was helpful. Please, let me know if you've tried any other great cleansing balms that I need to try too. Thank you for reading, I really appreciate your time.