Travel Visuals: Denver

We were only in Denver for 2 days but wow, we loved it so much. I knew nothing about Denver so I had no expectations. One thing that we had to get used to was the altitude, Denver is over 5000 ft above sea level. We didn't feel it coming up because the train was pressurised but as soon as we got off, both Bella and I were hit harddddd.  To put things into perspective - Melbourne is like 80 ft above sea level LOL.
We stayed in a really adorable AirBnB there, our hosts were lovely girls and they gave us a bunch of recommendations for food and things to do. Since we only had 2 full days there, we knew we wanted to spend one day just mooching around and the other, possibly visit the foothills of the mountains. So the first day, we explored the main part of town and shopped up a storm. The second day, we joined a Gray Line tour of the Denver Mountain Parks. We visited the Red Rocks Amphitheater which is a naturally formed open-air music venue. I was sad that we couldn't catch a concert there because it's seriously beautiful! So many music legends have played there too. The tour also took us to the Buffalo Bill Musuem. I had no idea who Buffalo Bill was but growing up in Australia, I'm sure we are all familiar with BUBBLEGUM Bill:
That moment when I realised that he's based on this legend of the Wild West, my mind was blown. Point is - Buffalo Bill was a truly accomplished and progressive man, and the museum full of amazing artifacts and interesting things. Here are some facts I learnt about him that I HAVE to share:
♡ He earned his nickname because he was the ultimate buffalo slayer. One time he hunted 4000+ buffalos in the span of 18 months
♡ When he realised that buffalos were hunted to near-extinction, he pushed for the their conservation
♡ His family was always anti-slavery even in the 1800s, his dad was actually stabbed for speaking against slavery! Cool guy
♡ He had a "Wild West" entertainment show that toured around the US then went on to tour internationally to the UK and Europe.
♡ His show featured performances from American Indian, Mexican, Arab and Turkic riders demonstrating different riding, herding, roping and shooting skills.
♡ He fought the American Indians during the civil war but after the war he became a well-respected friend to many Native Indians tribes. He was gifted numerous headdresses from various chiefs as a sign of high regard
♡ He performed for Queen Victoria, had tea with Oscar Wilde and met the Pope at the time
♡ He supported womens' rights
♡ He is buried at Lookout Mountain (where the museum is located) and from there you can apparently see 7 states!

I had such an all round good time in Denver. Thanks to our host's recommendations, every meal we had was delicious. Bella and I absolutely loved this brunch joint called Snooze AM so we went there both days. They were famous for their eggs and delicious pancakes.

I know this was a bit random but I hope this was a fun read for you nevertheless and that you enjoyed finding out a little about Buffalo Bill :P


Etude House Play 101 Pencils (Swatch + Review)

Korean brand - Etude House, has a range of multipurpose pencils called Play 101 Pencils. The general idea is that you can use them anywhere on the face - for example, on the eyes, lips, cheeks and eyebrows.
My mum and I have slowly accumulated quite a few after she picked up more of these when she went to Seoul (as you might have seen as part of her Asia haul). So today, I thought I would put up a swatch and review of our combined collection for you.

What's In My Bag? Flight Edition

I've been flying since the age of 3. The first time I flew by myself as an unaccompanied minor, I was 6 years old and I flew from Hong Kong to Auckland. Since then I've had the opportunity to travel to many cities and countries so you think I'd get the hang of packing by now. I hate packing though, the only thing worse than packing is unpacking. I always put it off for as long as possible and this often means that I don't sleep the night prior to a flight. Not a bad thing considering I need all the help I can get to sleep on planes. 
I almost always take a backpack as my carry-on, I don't like using shoulder bags when the contents are slightly on the heavy side. The one I have is from American Apparel, I bought it about 2 years ago and the second day I wore it, a waiter spilt soy sauce on it! It's been stained every since and I've finally covered it up with an adorable iron-on patch from Rosehound Apparel. I try to not overpack and only take things that I must have with me or things I know I'll need during the flight. 

Travel Visuals: California Zephyr

Kremmling, Colorado

From San Francisco, our next stop was Chicago. When we were planning our trip, it seemed silly to cross the country and miss everything in between so Bella and I went an unconventional route and decided to take an AMTRAK instead of flying. The California Zephyr is a 51 hour train journey that crosses 7 states - California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Nebraska, Iowa and Illinois. 
Seeing as the train ride was so long, we rode the Zephyr from Emeryville (near SF) to Denver and got a sleeper carriage (30 hour ride). We got off and spent a couple of days in Denver before resuming our journey to Chicago in coach (another 20 hour ride). 

March Favourites

It seems that now that I'm doing monthly favourites, I am hyperconscious of how fast each month flies by. I don't have that many favourites this month but that's okay because I have a lot to say about each item. Also a bit of a life update at the end of this post, I am currently on my way to Hong Kong for a couple of weeks so I will be travel snapping again because I enjoyed doing that so much when I was in the States. I love being able to share fun and interesting things in real time without having to edit myself. You can find me on Snapchat @chloe_e and Twitter @statuschlo. Now let's jump into favourites! 

Quarterly Empties

Boy do I have a monstrous empties post today! After I got back from my trip in mid-december, as I was putting away all my new purchases, I realised I had a lot of half-used products and a ridiculous amount of samples that were just sitting there taking up space. So I made a conscious effort to try and use up as many of those as I can before I start using my new goodies. I'm pretty proud because I managed to clear out a total of 57 products, of which 16 were full-sized and 41 were samples. As a lot of these are samples, I'll only elaborate on some products. I won't be reviewing everything but to make it a bit easier, I have categorised them into 4 groups. 

New In // Recent Hauls

I've collected a few new things in the last 3 months, some I bought and some were gifted to me by some very generous people, so I've chucked them all into this post today.

Falling in Love with Cleansing

I can't believe I ever thought of cleansing as a chore because with the right combination of products now, it is something I look forward to every night. My PM cleansing game has stepped up majorly and I'm really pleased with my current routine.

Travel Visuals: San Francisco

Charming San Francisco, this was such a memorable week. Every day spent in this gorgeous city was jam-packed, we managed to fit so much in! This was my second time in SF but it felt like a completely new experience as we did a lot of things that I didn't get to do the first time. It was so nice to be able to get around the city by public transport and walking after being in two car cities (LA and Merced/Yosemite). We were spoilt for good company and good food here. I was very excited about this part of our trip; my cousin lives in Oakland and I never get to see her obviously because she lives halfway across the world. Despite only having previously met her on 2 occasions (now, 3), we've been extremely close since our first meeting and our reunion was something I looked forward to for months. I was really glad that she got to meet my best friend Bella too, since both these lovely ladies are such important parts of my life.
Seriously, every time I put together another one of these travel posts, I am reminded of just how amazing this holiday was. I'm happy that I can share it on this little corner of mine on the internet.

On Wednesdays, We Wear Pink!

Actually, I would wear pink everyday if I could.

February Favourites

I didn't do a very good job of posting regularly in February, I feel like this month has gone by so quickly and just like that we're in the 3rd month of 2016. It's really scary how fast time passes.
This month was a happy month of reunions for me. Our huge group of family friends were all reunited for Chinese New Year after one of the families that have been living overseas moved back to Melbourne. We also had other family friends from Hong Kong visiting. The last time we were all together was back in 2005. Now, 10 years later, there are a few more little munchkins.
I fomo'd a little about not seeing Sufjan Stevens in Feb but that's alright because I went to a few other music events instead, which were all so much fun. I saw Flosstradamus and A$AP Rocky, and I went to Laneway Music Festival. A huge highlight was definitely seeing Grimes live, that girl is so fucking cool! I have no other way to describe her, I wish I saw her sideshow.
After recapping, I can see why this month flew by... so now let's talk favourites!

Travel Visuals: Yosemite

I'm pretty slow at getting these travel posts up but I do want to share them all with you eventually and be able to look back on them.
We stayed in Merced for 3 nights in the most comfortable Airbnb with the sweetest host. We rented a cute little Ford hatchback which I drove up to Yosemite National Park and back on both days as Bella doesn't have her license (2.5 hours each way). I didn't have an international license and this was my first time driving on the opposite side of the road but renting a car was surprisingly easy (hella expensive though).
Our short 2 days spent at Yosemite was nothing short of wonderful and extraordinary. I was amazed by how untouched everything seemed and I couldn't get enough of how refreshing the clean crisp air felt in my lungs. I felt so alive and in touch with the endless beauty surrounding us. I honestly could have easily spent a week there, this was definitely high up there in my top favourite experiences of my trip. I could go on forever but I'll let the pictures speak for itself. Sit back, relax, scroll down and take in the wonder ~

January Favorites

I don't think I have ever done a monthly favorites on here but what a better time to start than the new year because I really enjoy reading and watching everyone else's. Here are the things I have really been loving for the month of January.

Morphe Brushes 35E Palette and 35P Palette (Swatch + Review)

If you missed the first part of my Morphe Brushes haul on the Jaclyn Hill Favorites Palette and 35O Palette, you can catch up here. Today's post is about the other 2 palettes and brushes that I bought from the Morphe Store in LA. Read on to see swatches and hear my thoughts :)

Morphe Brushes Jacyln Hill Favorites Palette and 35O Palette (Swatch + Review)

Hey everyone! Today I am sharing with you 2 of the palettes that I bought when I had the chance to visit the Morphe Brushes store in Burbank, LA. 

Before I get into the review and swatches, here are my overall thoughts across all 4 palettes that I purchased:
♡ They are definitely great value for the price if you divide it by each pan in the palettes (50c - $1 for each shadow). I think they are great for people just starting out and might want to experiment with a range of colours.
♡ The packaging is quite crappy, I appreciate the snap closure but it does feel really thin and flimsy. I guess that is a factor that keeps the brand so inexpensive though. Probably not something you'd ever want to travel with. 
♡ There is a smell to the eyeshadows that is really off-putting - an industrial, cheap, powdery smell? It's not super obvious but when I do get a whiff of it, I'm like uh uh.
♡ The matte eyeshadows were hit and miss. Even when they were good, they were not amazing. I had trouble with a lot of the mattes in a couple of these palettes. They felt stiff and went on patchy.
♡ The metallic eyeshadows however, are incredible in colour payoff and texture, almost like cream shadows to the touch. By far my favourite thing about these palettes.
♡ I had some issues with the rich purples and burgundies staining my fingers and arm pink when I was swatching them and removing the swatches. I've never had a eyeshadow do that to me before so I'm wondering if that's because the eyeshadows are that cheap... probably not a good thing.
♡ I had no problems with fallout or longevity with any of the shadows. They lasted all day for me creasing or fading. I always wear an eye primer anyway.

Read on to see my swatches and reviews :)

IOPE Air Cushion XP Compact in #N23 (Review)

I don't think I have ever tried a Korean foundation or bb cream that I actually like so I was really not expecting to fall completely in love with the latest trend in Korean/asian beauty - "Cushion Compacts" (CC). If you don't know what CCs are, I'll sum it up for you. Basically they function like a wet compact, housing a makeup base-soaked sponge (with foundation or BB cream) and a non-absorbing puff to use with it. The applicator has a velvety texture to it so it doesn't soak up any product. When you dip it into the compact, air is pumped into the foundation-soaked sponge to release and press the thinnest layer of foundation onto the puff. The key to application is to tap the product in lightly so all the product transfers and melts into your skin, leaving it with a seamless finish. The foundation formula and sponge collectively work to give you with the much-coveted dewy no-makeup makeup look that you see on many Korean celebrities. You can also carry it with you on the go for touch-ups and it wouldn't cake up (much like powder foundations do). Most of the CCs on the market have a high SPF and many beneficial ingredients for your skin as well. 
IOPE is a high-end Korean beauty brand and was one of the first brands in Asia to launch the Cushion Compact. My mum purchased one when she went to Korea and after trying hers, I had to buy one for myself.

Travel Visuals: LA

Los Angeles was the first leg of my US trip and it's funny, I didn't think I liked it very much at the time that I was there but coming back to LA at the end of my trip to fly home and looking at these photos now, I have a newfound appreciation for Cali and all its palm trees.

HK + US Trip Haul

These were the goodies that I managed to accumulate on my 7 weeks away from home... I love a good haul post just as much as anyone, they're some of my favourite posts to read but oh man, the guilt is so real when it is your own haul, especially one this big ^_^' Honestly, it could have been worse. Who am I kidding, I'm just saying that to make myself feel better. But seriously, you don't know what I'm capable of - If I REALLY put my mind to it, I could have done a whole lot more damage. (See, I feel better already)
Our dollar was so weak at the time I exchanged my money (and still is), it was actually heartbreaking. I tried my hardest to get products that weren't as readily available in Australia or things that were considerably cheaper but even then, a few cheeky purchases made their way into my luggage. Let's be real, I reached VIB status pretty quickly. It was hilarious when I did because the girl serving me at the counter kept shouting "I APPRECIATE YOU!" at me over and over and I was just like uhh thanks..? It was really confusing and embarrassing coz she wouldn't stop and there was a huge line behind me. This Sephora status also meant that I got to pick up a lot of these things during the 20% off VIB sale though.

SooOoOooo 6 palettes as well as a bunch of single eyeshadows were probably a bit of an overkill on the eyeshadow front but I didn't really plan on buying 4 Morphe palettes. That literally happened on our last day in LA - we had already packed and checked out of our hotel. We needed to kill time before our flight and this was my idea of killing time - to visit the Morphe store.
Safe to say, I am definitely on an eyeshadow ban now which is sad because I really want to try out Makeup Geek eyeshadows T_T. Maybe when I get a job, that can be my reward. I will say now though, I am making an exception for the Too Faced Bon Bons palette when it hits Aussie shores in March so don't berate me for that. This is also the part where I confess that I ordered ONE Colourpop eyeshadow with my friend when she put in an order last week. Ok I promise that's it.
I realised last year that I hardly owned any bright or colourful eyeshadows. Everything I had was on the safe and neutral side. I hope that with these additions, I can try and be a little more adventurous/creative with my makeup looks and perhaps I will document them here.

Looking back now, I kind of wish I picked up more skincare products. I think part of the reason I didn't is because I am really happy with my skincare routine at the moment and I don't really want to disrupt that.
I probably won't get around to reviewing every last item but I will definitely try and throw up some reviews and keep you guys updated with how I'm liking everything through other posts such as favorites, empties etc. Sorry if this post seemed really rambley, I'm high on makeup.

Let me know if there are any particular products that you want me to review or do a post on first :) 

And while I am asking:

What would you like to see more posts of in 2016 on Status Chlo? 


Dear 2016...

Not usually a resolutions gal, but this year I decided to set myself a few goals that I am motivated to achieve:

  1. Find a full time job
    Now that I have graduated, taken some time off and done some travelling, I am ready for the next phase of my adulthood haha.
  2. Ride my bike a few times a week
    I was reminded how much I actually liked riding on my trip so as someone who isn't the most active person, this is the exercise I have chosen to commit myself to this year! Let's do this.
  3. Read at least 50 books 
    I used to love reading all though my childhood and high school life. Somehow this took a back seat when I was drowning in course-related readings instead during uni. Now that I have a Kindle, I plan to get right back into it. Connect with me on my Goodreads account.
  4. Try to use up / declutter beauty products in my stash
    This probably sounds semi-like-a-joke since I just bought a ridiculous amount of makeup on my trip however, I did pack a lot of products to finish during my holiday and it felt so good to use up and get rid of things that have just been sitting around. I plan to continue doing this and make a conscious effort to use up whatever I can.
  5. Purge closet
    On the same wavelength as my last goal, my wardrobe needs a gooood clear out to make room for new clothes! I also really need to cut down my shoe collection. I'm hoping to sell some of the things online or at Camberwell Market to make a little of it back. Especially if I need to eventually invest in a work wardrobe. 
+ a bonus: blog more consistently and regularly :) 

On a final note, as I have finally learnt to do so in 2015, I will continue to look myself - surround myself with positive, sincere and good people, appreciate every moment with loved ones, try to get enough sleep, eat a balanced diet and have fun :)

Voilà! That's all I really want for 2016 and I hope that I can share it all with you guys throughout the year and live up to my word.

Do you have any key resolutions for the year?


Travel Visuals: Hong Kong

Hey everyone! Feels so good to be blogging again and for the first time in 2016. I hope everyone had wonderful festivities with their family and friends over the last couple of weeks.  I was very happy to be home for the holidays after an incredible but exhausting 6 week trek around the U.S.
As an adult, I've never really gone so far away for so long and the trip definitely exceeded all expectations. I also feel that I have a newfound motivation for what this year might bring and the challenges that I may face. It's a really nice feeling to not be afraid but to be excited for the next stage in my life.
I want to share some of my favourite photos from my trip but since I was away for so long, I will break them up into each of the cities I had the pleasure of visiting. First stop: Hong Kong.