an explanation of absence (aka an update!)

Hello my lovely fellow addicts. I know that it seems like I’ve vanished off the face of the earth since there hasn’t been as much as a squeak out of this mink for months. I’ve been suffering from some nasty health issues lately and while I’m well on the way of recovery, it means that I haven’t really been able to do any proper reviews lately. To companies who I purchased blogger packs from (off the top of my head: Life’s Entropy, Notoriously Morbid and The Soap Box Co.), I apologize that the reviews are taking such a long time to come up. I’ll be working on them as soon as I can, which is hopefully within the next couple of weeks.

Imma go creep back onto my bed now, so this shameful little post is it for now. I hope to be back in tip top minkish state again soon so that I can celebrate all the wonderful indie goodness in my life!


The Bath Duchess – a Royal Rave over this new local indie e-tailer!

I absolutely LOVE discovering new indie companies so I went into full minkish mode when Eva approached me and asked if I would be interested in reviewing The Bath Duchess. I love all things Victorian so the name immediately drew me in. But perhaps what excited me the most was the fact that this company was actually located right on my very own sunny little island! I’m so used to dealing with international shipping and growing green horns of envy because of all the indie goodness that takes place several timezones away from me.

Anyhow, I contacted her right away and she offered to send me a bunch of products to review. Of course, I offered to pay for them but she waved off my attempts. I was really blown away by her generosity. Feeling a little sheepish, I listed out a number of products from her store that I was interested in and told her to just send me a couple of those in sample sizes. Imagine my surprise and thrill when a box stuffed to the brim with products arrived on my doorstep in record time a couple of days later.

Just look at all those goodies! I was totally blown away by how beautifully everything was packaged, and the sheer number of products in the box is astounding. I received a mix of their Halloween scented products as well as some products from her general collection. Here’s a breakdown of all the goodies that I got:

  • Whipped Body Frosting in Mad Tea Party
  • Whipped Body Butter in Monoi de Tahiti
  • Foaming Bath Mousse in Wail of Sirens Elixir
  • Whipped Body Scrub in Phoenix Feathers, Spiritus Draconis Elixir (sample), Mad Tea Party (sample) and Peppermint Candy (sample)
  • Shower Gel in Tears of Medusa Elixir
  • Gingerbread Man Soap in Strawberry Jam Cakes
  • Handmade Goats Milk Soap in Honey Sultanas, Claw of Griffin and Almond Cherry Liquor
  • Massage Butter Bar in French Lavender
  • Body Splash in Elixir of Life
  • Love-Your-Lips Butter in Lemon

Whew! That is quite the haul, I really couldn’t be more overwhelmed by her sheer generosity. I generally loved almost everything although of course, not everything worked perfectly on me. This is going to be a pretty lengthy review, so here. Have a cup of tea, fluff up some cushions and descend down the rabbit hole with me.

I received these for free, but my opinions of the actual product are unbiased. Reviews are based on my individual impressions from a test drive of the individual products. Everything is subject to my own skin chemistry, so your mileage may vary. 


Notoriously Morbid – Eye Shadow Swatches & Rave!

So here’s a funny story. The Fox and Mink have always been a devious duo well skilled in the art of procrastination. I’m more or less resigned to that fact, but the Fox decided to acquire a self-help e-book on Battling the Evils of Procrastination (my own take on the title, I can’t remember what the original was). I remember being highly amused when he brandished a thumb drive which contained the e-book with a look that was part smugness, part self righteousness on his little foxy face. Needless to say, it’s been about half a year since, and he still hasn’t even plugged the thumb drive into his laptop.

What’s the point of this cockamamie tale? Heh, it’s my convoluted way of saying that true to my big, stinky procrastinating ways, I have an entire backlog of reviews to catch up on. I’ve taken pictures, jotted down my thoughts here, there and everywhere, but really, it’s just putting everything together that gets my fur ruffled up. Still, here’s my little attempt at penance. SWATCHES.

I picked up a bunch of eye shadow samples from Notoriously Morbid some time ago and was astounded by how pretty some of the shades were. I went with neutral and somewhat more striking shades this round and somehow managed to end up loving everything. I’ve always meant to try the company out but got deterred by the relatively long turnaround times. Still, I got tempted by a Free Day Friday deal which included free international shipping and it was decided. I was going to have my Notoriously Morbid fix after all!

Here are the shades that I got to try: 

  • Young Merlin
  • Look Upon Me
  • Black Cat Crossing
  • Shadow of Things
  • Silence
  • 7 Years Shattered
  • Melancholy One
  • Ladder to Hell
  • Tea Tosh (gift from /u/eraserdust!)
  • Sometimes My Arms Bend  (Free Sample!)
  • Boca del Infierno (Free Sample!)

This is a dedicated eye shadow review post. I did get the Coffin Kissers as well, but I have another Notoriously Morbid order coming in soon so I’ll consolidate my review of those with my other goodies.


Cocoa Pink Rave – Magical Products + Why I’ll be a customer for life

Here am I, playing catch up on my merry backlog of reviews again! Today’s focus will be on one of my favorite indie bath & body brands of all time – Cocoa Pink. If your memory rivals that of an elephant, you might remember that I once did a review on my very first Cocoa Pink haul some months back. Basically there were hits and misses and a sensitive reaction from the Argan Therapy Creme conditioner that left me with red patches all over my forehead, ears and neck. I wrote to Beverley asking for her help in pinpointing the possible cause of the reaction and we both agreed that it might have been my choice of scent since it contained cinnamon. She offered to credit me a new bottle of the conditioner in my next order so I could try it out again. And of course, since I loved the products that I got, I just had to get some stowaways.

Long story short, I loved every single thing in this order. And I mean, in a way where if I ever ran out of something and the universe plotted to prevent me from getting to it, I would asphyxiate on the spot. It amazes me how I somehow end up falling deeply in love with whichever samples that Beverley sends me – it’s almost as though that lady gets me and understands my needs. Or it could be that everything that Cocoa Pink makes is magic.

Here’s my Cocoa Pink haul:

  • Soulmate Ultra Intensive Conditioner in Vanilla on the Rocks
  • I’m 29 Anti-Aging Cell Renewal Serum (4.5ml)
  • Meow Intimate Cleansers (2oz) in Lavender and Green Tea Spritzer
  • Underarm Candy Deodorant (0.75oz) in Soda

And here are my freebies:

  • Argan Therapy Creme Conditioner (free replacement bottle) in Vanilla Rose
  • Princess Poo Shampoo (1oz) in Dolphin Cove
  • Coco Mango Butter in Banana Coconut Cream Pie
  • Soft Bubbles Foaming Sugar Scrub in Tahitian Monoi Cake

As you can see, Beverley is amazingly generous and it’s such fun because I always end up discovering new loves with every purchase. Although some scents weren’t really up my alley, these are quality products at really reasonable prices – and that’s a definite win in my book!


Innocent + Twisted Alchemy Subscription [Aug 2014] – Review & Swatches

I know, I know. In a race of little critters, I’m the underachieving sloth who took a nap and is only drowsily waking up now. Still, at least there’s a good one week for me to join the bandwagon of enablers as I regale you about the splendor that is Innocent + Twisted Alchemy’s awesome monthly subscription pack. This is my first subscription (I went for the sample sized subscription to start myself out easy) and there is no way that I’m ever giving up on my membership because, really. This stuff is just too AWESOME. No wonder there’s always an insane rush when new subscription slots are released. I mean, just look at that awesome artwork. And that’s only the cherry on the delicious cake that is waiting inside the package.

August 2014’s theme is centered around “NANA” by Ai Yazawa. I have to confess that I don’t know my manga/anime so perhaps I couldn’t really get the full impact of the references but I have to say that everything is just stunning. That artwork is just out of this world. I know that the handmade envelopes are probably going to go extinct, as referenced from her facebook post, but I sure am glad that I got hold of this one. Of course, the beauty here is not just skin deep; the goodies were enough to make me feel all minkish inside. ♥ I just love opening surprise packs like these because you just don’t know what to expect!

Here’s what I got in my pack:

I+TA’s Nana Collection

  • Deluxe eye shadow samples of Ren Flower, 7 & 8, Blast! and Tranes

Bonus Samples

  • Eye shadow sample in Dog Days from Blackbird Cosmetics
  • Eye shadow sample in monster from Chinovi Cosmetics
  • Eye shadow sample in Ashitaka from Dusk Cosmetics
  • Eye shadow jar in Angel Wings from Glamour Doll Eyes
  • Matte Lipstick in Very Berry from Performance Colors

That is quite a haul and I was really excited since other than Performance Colors which I’ve already tried some time earlier, all the other companies were new to me. So I braced my swatching hand and got ready to dive into the goodness!


Hello Waffle Review Part 2 – Blushes and Lippies

My greatest apologies for my little hiatus! I returned from my Taiwan trip and somehow managed to get swamped by an assortment of non-indie related stuff that were both boring but necessary. Still, indulgence always reclaims its top spot in the natural order of things, so here’s the long overdue second part of my review of the gorgeous Hello Waffle haul that I received from my blogger’s pack order.

In case you missed it, here’s a link to Part 1 – Eye Shadows.

This post will be dedicated to swatches and reviews of Hello Waffle’s fantastic blushes and tinted lip balms. For a quick recap, here’s a list of the goodies that I got:

  • Full sized eye shadows in: Bach, Bartok, Corgi Butts and Mendelssohn
  • Full sized blushes in: Belle and Rose Colored Glasses
  • Full sized lip balm in Original
  • Eye Shadow samples in:  Dormouse, Einaudi, Eternity, Fey, Gryphon, Mozart, Rule 42, Schubert and Tower
  • Blush sample in June Bug
  • Lip Balm samples in Ginger Kitties and Roses of the Vale

Without further ado, here’s the review and the swatches!


Hello Waffle Review Part 1 – Gorgeous, gorgeous eye shadows

I got the loveliest package in the mail that just made me squeal, much to the amusement of the Fox. Yes, my Hello Waffle Blogger’s Pack has finally arrived! In fact, it arrived a week ago, but I’ve been busy as a bee and am only getting down to the review now. I’m kinda ashamed, especially since the amount of goodies that I received from Christine is astounding. It’s just that I’ve been preparing for a trip to Taiwan, so I haven’t been able to dedicate as much time to swatches and reviews as much as I’d like. For this reason, I’ve decided to break up this review into two parts: 1. Eye shadows and 2. Blushes and Lip Balms.

I know what you’re thinking as you look at my haul picture. That’s an awesome amount of full sized products for a blogger pack. I have the ever so lovely Christine to thank for that! She up-sized some of my samples and included a full size of Corgi Butts as a special surprise. I honestly wasn’t expecting to get many freebies out of this since I ordered during the sale and already enjoyed a nifty discount, so this was a really lovely surprise.

Here’s a tally of my gorgeous haul:

  • Full sized eye shadows in: Bach, Bartok, Corgi Butts and Mendelssohn
  • Full sized blushes in: Belle and Rose Tinted Glasses
  • Full sized lip balm in Original
  • Eye Shadow samples in:  Dormouse, Einaudi, Eternity, Fey, Gryphon, Mozart, Rule 42, Schubert and Tower
  • Blush sample in June Bug
  • Lip Balm samples in Ginger Kitties and Roses of the Vale

Christine is so amazingly generous that I really managed to get a lot of product out of this blogger’s package. I feel bad that I’ve dallied this long in writing up this review because this is really quite the star-studded cast that I have received.