Brand Focus: Shanghai Lil and the Scarlet Fez

Hey guys!

Today, I want to talk to you about one of the brands that I met at the Bloggers United Adelaide event. I’m starting off with my favourite of the brands I met with only because I want you guys to know about them before an event that they’ll be attending so that you can keep you’re eyes peeled for them while you’re there. I hope that you fall in love with this brand like I have!



Founded in 2012, Shanghai Lil and the Scarlet Fez is an Adelaide-based maker of 100% natural, vegan, hand-crafted cold process soap, perfumes and skincare. Mark McCarthy, the man behind the brand, grew up spending a lot of time in the garden and had a fondness for fresh, natural scents. Shanghai Lil fills a gap in the market for beautifully packaged, vegan, natural products that your body will thank you for.

As soon as Mark started introducing the brand to us at the event, I knew I was going to love this brand. I’m a person who really values passion. I know that when a university lecturer is passionate about the topic that they’re talking about, I will have a great time in that class because it makes the topic seem worthwhile. Mark spoke about his brand in the same way. He didn’t have to push anything on us or talk the products up because the products really spoke for themselves. He has created some fantastic fragrances, soaps, etc. and I just need you all to hear about it because I promise that you will not regret purchasing anything from this brand.

In one of our goodie bags, we were given a lip balm from Shanghai Lil, and I received Raspberry Royale. It is a gorgeous balm that has a sweet, fruity scent that isn’t too overpowering. It reminds me a little bit of something and I really can’t put my finger on it. The scent is really yummy and if it was edible, I’d probably lick it. Not gonna lie.

Since receiving it in the goodie bag, I purchased two other lip balms, Caramelised Fig and Candied Violets, from Have You Met Charlie?. Purchasing the Caramelised Fig balm was an absolute no brainer. I grew up eating figs from my Nonna’s garden and now anything fig scented brings me right back to that time. The scent is very sweet and if you’re a fig fan, you absolutely cannot go without this product. I promise. I got my boyfriend the smell the lip balms that I purchased and Caramelised Fig was his favourite. So it’s not just a Sarah thing.
Candied Violets is a more subtle floral scent and you can actually pick up a solid perfume in the same scent. I was tossing up between this balm and the Jersey Caramel balm but because I was already getting Caramelised Fig, I thought I needed something less sweet. I love this scent and I think that it would make for a great present for someone and you’re unsure of which scent they might like. It’s unoffensive and very cute and I just love it.

After purchasing the lip balms, I realised that I needed to try a soap and ended up purchasing a face mist too! I had my heart set on the Emperor’s Chai soap because the way to my heart is everything chai but Have You Met Charlie? didn’t have it in stock so I’ll have to order it online at some point. I’m probably going to clear that store out of the Shanghai Lil products very soon hahaha.


I picked up the Odalisque soap, which is lemon and rose geranium scented. I have to share the description of the soap from the website with you because it is just so romantic and it explains the scent much better than I ever could.

An Arabian Nights confection of a soap, scented with rose geranium and lemony may chang, Odalisque is brimming with luscious skin-conditioning oils including olive oil, cocoa butter, olive pomace and apricot and peach kernel oils.  Odalisque is gently coloured with French pink clay and is a Turkish delight for your skin and senses!

I love anything citrus scented and I actually tend to shy away from rosey-scents but the mixture of the lemon and rose geranium makes for a really nice balance. The soaps are huge! You could cut the soaps in half so that they fit on your soap dish, which is something I’m considering because I do seem to have an abundance of soaps.
If you don’t think that this scent would appeal to you, there are eight other soaps available, so I’m sure you’ll find something that you fancy!

The event that Shanghai Lil will be attending is Womadelaide, which starts this friday. If you’re going to Womad, make sure you stop by Shanghai Lil and check out what they have available. I haven’t even spoken about everything that they have available. There’s also a jasmine scented perfume that everyone went nuts for at Bloggers United Adelaide and I’m wanting to pick that up too haha.

I’m the biggest fan-girl of this brand (as I’m sure you’ve figured out by now) and I just want Mark to do so well because the products are fantastic and they deserve to be raved about. I hope that you enjoyed this post and I hope that if you’re at Womad, you check out the brand, and if not, I hope that you pop into Have You Met Charlie? in Regent Arcade.


I hope that you’re having a wonderful day!

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Au revoir xxx

2 thoughts on “Brand Focus: Shanghai Lil and the Scarlet Fez

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