Posts Tagged Sephora

A full on Radiant Orchid look? Don’t mind if I do!

It’s been a busy week. On Wednesday night, I reconnected with an old friend that I’d lost touch with for 5+ years, and we spent 5 hours chatting – I guess one for each year missed! Then last night a bunch of my favourite people at work got together to say goodbye to one of our much-loved coworkers, who is moving on to bigger and better things. Let’s just say, we had some SERIOUS fun on a school night! ;)

Thankfully, work is at a standstill due to a crash in our system, which happened Tuesday night and won’t be repaired until Sunday. While I spent Wednesday getting tasks done that I’d been putting off for a while, Thursday was a complete waste of a day – we’re in our fiscal year end, and it’s pretty much the WORST time this could happen, because we have SO much do to and can’t do any of it. So, that fact combined with my party-fun-time last night meant that I took the day off today – whoopee! And also, thank goodness because I needed to get this post up today and I was getting rather delinquent…

Radiant Orchid

The lovely ladies of  the Beauty Envy Bags got together and decided it was high time to do a Radiant Orchid-themed post. As you all know my obsession with this shade, this was a no-brainer for me! But which products to pick…? In the end, I decided to go with two more affordable options, just to mix it up, as I tend to have expensive taste!  I showed you Essie’s Splash of Grenadine last month, and professed my undying love for the shade (that feeling still stands – it’s definitely in my top 5!); today I’ll capture in action L’Oreal’s Color Caresse Shine Stain in Stubborn Plum – which looks a lot more like the perfect orchid tone than plum to me!

L'Oreal Color Caresse Shine Stain in Stubborn Plum L'Oreal Color Caresse Shine Stain in Stubborn Plum

I have three of the Shine Stains now, in quite different shades, and they’re one of the few drugstore products I’ll go for – I love the YSL versions, but at $38 a pop, they’re not something I can justify in owning several, and the formulas are close enough that I get my fix through L’Oreal. During my whirlwind spree of acquiring ALL THINGS RADIANT ORCHID, Shoppers conveniently had a ‘Spend Your Points’ event, and I used 40,000 of my points to get $85 worth of product. I was $10 short of my goal, and so Stubborn Plum came home with me.

Radiant Orchid

Sephora sent me a few pieces from their Radiant Orchid Pantone Collection, and the Rush Luster Cheek Sweep* ($31CAD) was the perfect compliment to the lip stain. This cheek palette is really gorgeous! The formula is smooth for all three shades, and the orchid colour makes me drool. I paired it along with the lightest luminizer, and the glow is really something else. In daylight, it borders on shimmertastic, but for this time or year or in the evening (or if you just like to get your glow on!), this trio is great!

Sephora + Pantone Rush Luster Cheek Sweep

For the eyes, I did my usual liner flick, but added depth by using a violet shadow in my crease and on my lower lash line.  I loved the way this turned out – I really should do it more! I’ve gotten quite lazy with my makeup application, and usually just go for the flick and skip shadow, but it makes such a nice impact with a little something extra.  The products/shades I used were: YSL’s Eyeliner Effet Faux Cils in Cherry Black (great and long wear but wish the colour was a bit bolder), Inglot Eyeshadow in #325 (first time I’m wearing this!), and Maybelline’s Volum Express ‘The Rocket’ Mascara (which I’m not sold on).

Radiant Orchid

I snagged a sample of Benefit’s newish Hello, Flawless brightening foundation, in ‘Toasted Beige‘, and I quite like it. It’s got good coverage without being too heavy, a nice consistency, an SPF of 25, and the shade is actually pretty close, which is a challenge for me – I find my skin tone really is *neutral* and most foundations are either too yellow, pink or orange.

Radiant Orchid

Underneath the foundation, I tried out RBR’s Original Skin Primer*, which I got when I tried their new Nocturnal Ink liner. I found it VERY heavy on my slightly oily skin when used with a moisturizer, but used AS the moisturizer, it’s pretty good! It dries to a matte finish and doesn’t feel greasy at all – but it is a thick formula and I can see it being best for those with normal to dry skin.

A couple tools of the trade that I wanted to mention are the MAC #217 (which I bought in NYC, and wish I had gotten on that train sooner!), and the ELF Studio Complexion Brush* ($4.95CAD), which NPC sent for me to try. I was not a fan of the brush initially, thinking it was much too floppy for setting/finishing powders, but one day I tried it with a very pigmented blush, and VOILA! Instant success. I used this with the Sephora + Pantone shades above, and it worked beautifully to buff the shade into the skin and bring out that glow. A steal at $5!

Sephora + Pantone Rush Luster Cheek Sweep L'Oreal Color Caresse Shine Stain in Stubborn Plum

The finished look! I’m overall pretty pleased – as I mentioned, I’ve gotten pretty lazy with my makeup lately and it’s either cat-eyes or bright lips for the most part. It was fun to do the whole 9 yards, with primer and foundation and everything (I rarely wear either). Sometimes you just gotta go all in, ya know? :)

Radiant Orchid

See what the other gals have cooked up in their Radiant Orchid posts!

What do you think of tone-on-tone looks? Do you go all-out with your makeup every day, or save that for special occasions?

*Products were sent by the PR company/brand for my unbiased consideration.

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Disney Ariel Collection by Sephora: Kiss the Girl Eau de Parfum Review

Funny things can happen when you get a new roommate and you move all your things aside to make room for their stuff….back in May when my now ‘old’ roommate moved in, I had to make space for all the things a 50+ woman might bring with her.  While she didn’t have a ton of stuff, in an effort to make her feel comfortable and at home, I rearranged and shifted many of my own things to give her space and a place to put her extra bits and bobs.  Now that she’s gone, I’m slowly spreading my things out again and putting them ‘where they belong’ so to speak.  Lo and behold, I found a product I had meant to review ages ago! – and which happily is still available on Sephora, so, I shall review with abandon :)

Disney Ariel Collection Kiss the Girl Eau de Parfum

Let me make it clear that I am in no way a fragrance blogger.  While I wear perfume every day (the only real ‘scent’ in my fastidious anti-eczema routine), and I know what I like, my ability to recognize certain notes is limited, and I find it difficult to judge a fragrance on it’s merit without letting my personal views get in the way.  Having said that, I am going to attempt to fairly review Kiss the Girl ($70CAD), the limited edition fragrance that is part of the Disney Ariel collection by Sephora.  Bear with me, folks!

Disney Ariel Collection Kiss the Girl Eau de Parfum (3)

First of all, one thing I can state with confidence is, this bottle is GORGEOUS!!  Truly, I feel like keeping this displayed on my dresser simply for it’s stunning aesthetic.  Beautifully cut glass that catches the light just so, with a small, unobtrusive ‘A’ for Ariel on the front, and a pretty aqua metallic band around the base of the topper.  This kind of simple yet classically elegant design will get me every time!  Even the box it came it was lovely, with silver designs upon a deep sea green background.  It’s the little details, right?

Disney Ariel Collection Kiss the Girl Eau de Parfum (4)

The notes of the fragrance even at first spritz are very soft and clean.  The top notes of bergamot and wet cucumber are refreshing and uplifting, which is boosted by the addition of an ‘ozonic accord;’ a concept I know nothing about yet can somehow agree with when I sniff my wrist – somehow like being high up on a mountain breathing the cold air.  The middle notes boast water notes, wild lilac and starfruit, and while I can get a hint of the lilac, the starfruit completely alludes me.  Finally, the base notes of white musk, warm sandalwood and velvet ambergris (which apparently is produced in the digestive system of sperm whales, and as it ages it loses its fecal odor {awesome} and turns into a sweet, earthy scent) ground the scent and give it a touch of sensuality, so as it dries down it loses it’s sparkling quality and feels a bit more romantic rather than squeaky clean.

Though the soft, gentle quality of the scent (which lasts and last, by the way, due to the sperm whale concoction) ensures its easy wearability, the scent is still not my kind of jam.  Though I actually had no problems in testing it – which can be a trial when a fragrance you don’t favor is overbearing, as can often be the case – and even came to appreciate its clean yet alluring ‘prettiness’, it’s too bright and oceanic for my tastes.  Give me a good vanilla-heavy, gourmand scent any day and I’ll wear the crap out of it.  Green, feminine scents make me somehow feel like I shouldn’t be wearing white on my wedding day…I dunno if that makes any sense but that’s just the way of it!

Disney Ariel Collection Kiss the Girl Eau de Parfum (2)

What sort of fragrance do you gravitate toward? 

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Disney Ariel Collection by Sephora: Mermaid’s Song 4 Piece Lip Gloss Set

I’ve been meaning to post this for ages but, well…you know.  It’s been busy.  Also, I was unaware that this hadn’t already come out on Sephora until this week when I realized it just was released!  So in a way, I’m not late…right!?

Anyway, Sephora has come out with another themed collection, this time around The Little Mermaid and Ariel, the fiery red-headed mermaid who wanted to be human so she could make time be with Prince Eric.  Today I’m showing you the gloss set from the collection, Mermaid’s Song ($46CAD), with four shades – Mermaid, Red Head, Dream Girl, and Sea Witch.

Sephora ArielSephora Ariel lipgloss swatchesLeft to right: Red Head, Sea Witch, Dream Girl, Mermaid

The shades in the set are based off of various items within the story; as follows:

Sephora Ariel lipglossAriel’s sister’s darling shells (Mermaid – courageous coral)

Sephora Ariel lipgloss (4)Ariel’s iconic red hair (Red Head – rich red)

Sephora Ariel lipgloss (3)Ursula’s earrings (Sea Witch – bold berry)

Sephora Ariel lipgloss (2)Ariel’s pink dress (Dream Girl – perky pink)

The texture of the glosses is quite nice – its smooth and non-sticky, but not so slick that it wears off within an hour.  It’s not long-wearing, but honestly I don’t mind reapplying gloss as a general rule.  None of the colors are particularly pigmented, though they are semi-opaque – especially Sea Witch and Red Head – so you do get some color.  On to the lip swatches!

Sephora Ariel lipgloss swatches (5)Mermaid

Sephora Ariel lipgloss swatches (4)Red Head

Sephora Ariel lipgloss swatches (3)Sea Witch

Sephora Ariel lipgloss swatches (2)Dream Girl

Overall, I really like these!  I will say, I’m not a huge fan of the packaging…it looks a bit cheap to me, and I favor wand application to the squeeze tip, but the glosses themselves are easy to apply, comfortable to wear, and look pretty on.  I’m surprizingly favoring the vampiness of Sea Witch and can’t wait to wear it with a bronzed face and mega-lashes.  I would say, if you’re a big Disney fan and a fan of The Little Mermaid in particular, this is a nice little set that covers a decent range of shades and is definitely worth a look!

What is your favorite Disney movie?  Do you like themed collections like these?

*Products were provided by the PR company/brand for my unbiased consideration.

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April’s (Partial) Wish List

I feel like I’ve been waiting on Sephora’s semi-annual VIB sale for months…it’s been a good way to keep my spending in check, because I keep telling myself to hold out until the sale, but DAMN – can it get here already!?  I’ve got a little cash socked away in a drawer (literally…well, maybe not in a sock, but definitely tucked away in a drawer!) and I’ve written and re-written my shopping list for the event.  I’ve been hovering at about 4 items for awhile, but I’m getting antsy and the list is slowly creeping up to 6-7 this week, as I’m thinking I should just stock up on all the items I know I’m going to buy there in the next couple months…urk!  We’ll see how it all pans out.  In any case, the items below I am definitely (I think…maybe…probably) picking up whenever the heck the sale starts:

April Wish List

1. Comptoir Sud Pacifique’s Vanille Coco mini atomizer $24CAD – The last time I was by the store I spritzed a bit of this on, and god knows I’m a sucker for vanilla and coconut-type scents!  I’m trying to break into the more ‘adult’ fragrances (especially since I’ve been reading Denyse Beaulieu’s The Perfume Lover and becoming terribly entranced by the whole history of fragrance), but this will be my guilty pleasure in the meantime.  At $24 for a small spray, I don’t feel too bad!

2. NARS Light-Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder $39CAD – For ages I thought I was going to go for one of the new Hourglass Ambient powders, but I realized I need a real setting powder that will control shine more than I need extra radiance.  The last powder I bought was in 2010 (I KNOW…IT’S CRAZY), and it was also NARS – the loose powder, which is why I am going for the pressed because JEEZ GUYS I just want something new already!  Loose powder is terribly economical but oh so friggin’ boring for someone who likes change!

3. BITE Beauty High Pigment Matte Lip Pencil in Quince $28CAD – I mentioned that this was a contender for my upcoming fuchsia lip purchase, and I’m fairly certain this is what I’m going with.  It is a beautifully saturated color and exactly the shade I have been looking for.  The only way I might get swayed from buying it is if one of the YSL Rouge Volupte Shine’s catch my eye…which could happen.  We shall see!

4. Boscia Tsubaki Beauty Oil $55CAD – I just added this to my list tonight while browsing through the online site for facial oils.  The Tarte Pure Maracuja Oil I have is still going strong (a whopping four+ months later!  Color me impressed), but I know my fickle self will want to try something new when the time comes.  This is the same price, has wonderful ingredients with nothing to aggravate my skin, and it’s something new so hey – it fits the bill quite nicely.

5. Tarte BB Tinted Treatment 12-hr Primer SPF30 $41CAD – I’m on the fence about this one; it’s been getting great reviews and I took a sample home a few weeks ago to try, but it’s really too dark for my skintone to wear it right now so I don’t have an idea of how it works for me yet.  I think I’m going to grab a sample of the next lightest shade and play around with them a bit to see how it fares.

So that’s what I’ve got on the brain and the items that *should* come home with me sometime this month.  However, I am tempted to also grab the burgundy YSL mascara  and the Hourglass lippie I noted last month and still haven’t picked up….yikes.  I’m going to try my best to keep it together and keep it under control.  Wish me luck!

Do you have a wish list ready for the VIB sale?

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Holiday Color Pairings

Holiday Colors

When I start to think about it, it’s not really a surprise to me that I love makeup.  When I was a kid, I use to spend hours pairing my crayons together in color combinations I thought looked good together (which was also a great indication of my obsessive tendencies toward organization, but that’s a whole OTHER topic in itself!).  While I don’t feel societal pressures to follow trends in shades (woohoo, Emerald for 2013!), nor feel like I ‘should’ wear darker colors in winter and brighter colors in summer, I choose to follow these paths often because it just makes sense to me.  I love the idea of changing the shades I wear according to seasons – heck, I even do it with the change in weather!  Rain means somber shades of grey or blue; sun means warm tones of gold, or brights like aqua and orange; and snow equals icy silvers and cool pinks and purples.  Its just how I roll, ya’ll!

Holiday Colors (2)

As it’s the holidays, of course I imagined an array of festive shades to represent the season, and since the work was already done, I thought I’d share them with you!  On the weekend for the first time I matched my lips to my tips, and it was a lot of fun.  I’m not entirely sure I’d do the same with eyeshadow, but the colors below all complimented a polish I own so well I figured what the heck.  I hope you enjoy!

Holiday Colors - SilverBobbi Brown Chrome Eye Shadow in Pewter; Chanel Le Vernis in 529 Graphite

Holiday Color Swatches - Silver (2) Holiday Color Swatches - SilverChanel Graphite; Bobbi Brown Pewter

Both of these silvers are so much more than plain ol’ silver.  They both veer into a warmer tone rather than stark icy shades, which means they’re quite wearable for all skin tones.  Pewter is currently unavailable as this was an LE shade, but at times Bobbi Brown brings it back in palettes and such, so keep your eyes peeled!  Graphite has had a ton of reincarnations over the past year since it was released (though I don’t believe it’s LE anyway) – the best being Sally Hansen’s Shoot the Moon which was just featured on All Lacquered Up.

Holiday Colors - RedEssie Limited Addiction; Make Up For Ever Rouge Artist Natural in #46

Holiday Color Swatches - Red (2) Holiday Color Swatches - RedEssie Limited Addiction; MUFE #46

MUFE’s #46 Rouge Artist lippie was the red shade I wore on the weekend to compliment my red manicure (done with China Glaze Ruby Pumps).  I ADORE this lipstick; it is by far my favorite red that I own.  It’s more of a true red I think, and looks so darn good on!  The moistness of the lipstick keeps it looking so juicy and festive without being overwhelming in the least.  It feels amazing on and I just can’t get enough!  The only downside is that it’s only available at MUFE Pro stores and kiosks, but well worth the effort.

Essie Limited Addiction was, unfortunately, limited edition, but there are a billion reds out there I’m sure that are similar – just a bit deeper than your typical shade and neither warm nor cool.

Holiday Colors - GreenMAC Jealousy Wakes; a-England Saint George

Holiday Color Swatches - Green (2) Holiday Color Swatches - Greena-England Saint George; MAC Jealousy Wakes

Hot DAMN Saint George is beautiful!  I don’t wear this polish nearly as much as I should, mainly because when I bought it last year, I wore it about three times in a few weeks – obsessed, I was!  I’m wearing this to my work Christmas party this week and I’m super excited!  Its one of the few greenish hues I own, and one of the few of that color palette I like.  In truth it’s more teal than green but whatever – evergreen, shall we say?  I LOVE IT and all it’s prismatic shimmer.

Jealousy Wakes is also another shade I rarely wear, probably because I don’t wear color in my shadows nearly as much as I used to, but I still enjoy it from time to time when I do pull it out.  I dislike the texture of the shadow immensely – it’s so stiff and rough! – but it IS a lovely shade.

Holiday Colors - GoldSephora Brand She Sparkles; SpaRitual Aurum

Holiday Color Swatches - Gold (2)Holiday Color Swatches - Gold (3) Holiday Color Swatches - GoldSpaRitual Aurum; Sephora Brand She Sparkles

Oooh, sparkly indeed!  Though Aurum is sort of a crap color on me – probably on most people, it’s so damn blingy I’m going to HAVE to pull it out for the holidays!  Look at that sparkle!  It’s a bit more greenish-gold than the orange-y gold of She Sparkles, but they both shimmer prettily together, don’t you think?  I wore She Sparkles like crazy the last holiday season (when I purchased it), but haven’t given it much love since.  I’ll surely be pulling it out again this month!

Holiday Colors - BlackMAC Dark Soul Pigment; Illamasqua Creator

Holiday Color Swatches - Black (2) Holiday Color Swatches - BlackIllamasqua Creator; MAC Dark Soul

Though I’m not a huge lover of black nail polish, Creator has won me over with its glittery goodness, and looks both elegant and edgy at the same time.  It compliments Dark Soul so perfectly!  I could totally see rocking these two shades together, it’s like they were made for each other.  I rarely wear Dark Soul for sort of obvious reasons (its a shimmery charcoal shadow – the rockstar look doesn’t exactly work at the office), but I’m trying to find ways to implement it more when I can.  It’s definitely a perfect shadow for the holidays!

It was fun making these pairings and a huge throwback to my formative years :P  It’s also scary to see that I happen to have enough polish and makeup that I can actually make pairings that coordinate so well… ~shrugs~ I’m a collector, what can I say?

Have you gotten into the matching trend?  Would you be willing to try it, or do you avoid it at all costs?  What colors say ‘holiday’ to you?

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Make Up For Ever HD Foundation Event This Weekend at Halifax Sephora!

Heads up guys – there’s another Make Up For Ever event going on at Sephora this weekend!  With fall just around the corner, its a perfect time to get matched for a new foundation and MUFE has your HD shade – I guarantee you can find one to suit your skintone perfectly (there are like, 26 shades, so if you can’t – I’ll eat my hat!)!

They’re also offering a free gift with a purchase of the foundation, so if you’ve been thinking about it, now’s the perfect time!  And while you’re there – check out some of their other fabulous products, like their liquid liners, eyeshadows (pencil, powder, and cream), blushlipsticks…so many goodies to choose from! :)

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MAKE UP FOR EVER: An Education

I really wish I had become a beauty blogger earlier.

Seriously, the amount of pleasure I get from having a legitimate reason to read and write about beauty on a consistent basis is probably the best thing I ever did.  I’ve always had this passion and enthusiasm for makeup and skincare that seemed to require reasonable containment, as I haven’t had any friends as obsessed interested in it as I am.  The past couple years have totally changed that!  Not only have I found others who share my feelings, but I’ve had opportunities to learn more about the world of beauty than I ever would have.  This past Thursday was one of those times.

When the PR rep for MAKE UP FOR EVER Canada decided to make the trek out to the East Coast from Montreal, she got in touch with me to set up a meeting at our Sephora here.  I was super-excited, as MAKE UP FOR EVER is fast becoming one of my favorite brands (partly due to her!), and I was really looking forward to meeting her, as our correspondence over the past 7 months has been nothing but a pleasure (which is NOT what I envisioned interactions with PR to be – colour me pleasantly corrected!).

The meeting was designed not only for each of us to put a face to the name, but also as an education session with one of their fantastic makeup artists to explain a bit more about the line and it’s origins, vision, and product formulations.  And oh my, did I ever learn a lot!

Let’s just say that every single product is like the MacGyver of makeup.

Each one can be used in a multitude of ways to produce different effects, looks, and textures.  Mixing the HD concealer with a frost-finish Aqua Cream turns it into a matte product.  Primers can be mixed with foundations to sheer them out.  Any of the Aqua products can be mixed with others to create a waterproof formula.  The HD powder can be used as a dry shampoo (I am SO trying this the next time I straighten my hair!!).  The possibilities and combinations are endless.

I consider myself fairly well-versed in the ways of makeup, but I was enthralled at each new trick I learned, and found myself asking question after question, dying to learn more.  I really appreciate multi-tasking products, as it means you can get more with less out of your collection (and they’re GREAT for taking on trips anywhere!).

A few other interesting tips I learned:

  • To get the most natural look, use a large stippling brush when applying the HD Microfinish Blush (remember, only a light touch is needed!), then buff it out with a kabuki brush
  • Mix blush with foundation to get a more sheer, toned down application
  • The HD Invisible Cover Concealer ‘sets’ after application, to blend seamlessly into the skin
  • The Aqua (re: waterproof) products are to be applied directly to bare skin (even without primer) to get the longest wearing effect
  • Dab Aqua Cream(s) first to your hand, rubbing to warm up, then apply with a synthetic brush
  • You can mix Aqua Creams together to get new shades and textures

We also had a demonstration/application with the HD Invisible Cover Foundation ($46CAD) and Concealer ($33CAD), as well as one of the Route Artist lipsticks.  They were able to choose my concealer shade based on the shade of foundation I matched to, according to a handy chart they have (available online), which was super-accurate.  I was amazed at how the makeup artist was able to apply the concealer with the flat side of the brush parallel to my undereye, and just pat the product in without needing to use her finger at all.  It kept the product density intact so I had the best coverage, while still looking blended somehow.  She said you *could* add powder if you wished, using a very small amount of the HD Microfinish Powder, but said it wasn’t really necessary.  I found after wearing the concealer for a few hours, I got slight creasing, but I think if I used a Q-tip to gently swab directly under the eye after the concealer was applied, that wouldn’t have happened.  Otherwise it lasted at least 6 hours without fading, or use of powder (it was applied around 4pm and I washed my face at 10pm).

On that topic, I asked her how to avoid that whitish cast some people were experiencing when using the HD Microfinish Powder ($35CAD).  She explained that you need only the smallest dusting of powder – a good rule of thumb was to lightly tap your kabuki brush (or powder brush) into the cap of the powder to pick up the right amount to dust all over your face.  It was tiny.  But it was all that was needed to get that diffused, airbrushed look to the skin.  So keep that in mind if you’ve been scared away from using this product!

I think I asked so many questions that I took up more time than was allotted – we had to skip over a few of the products as they had another appointment arriving.  However, there were a couple other notable products that they mentioned:

- Rouge Artist Intense in shade S43 Moulin Rouge ($22CAD), a creamy, vibrant red that was created for the cabaret of the same name – check out Temptalia, for shots of this wearable-for-all-skintones shade (MUST.BUY.).  

- HD Elixir ($43CAD), a glycerin-containing serum that boosts the skin’s hydration by 520% in 15 minutes, and which smoothes and brightens the skin and prepares it for a flawless foundation application (particularly HD).  

All in all, it was a very productive session, one that made me terribly eager to get home and start playing with all my MAKE UP FOR EVER products in totally new ways.  Between the makeup artists knowledge and the PR rep’s enthusiasm and generosity (I did leave with a few new treats!), I’m fairly certain the have a convert for life on their hands.  The biggest indication to me that MAKE UP FOR EVER has really got the goods?  The fact that even though I get sent lots of goodies here and there from the brand, I still make a point of buying new items from them on a regular basis.  There’s just so much to try (and consequently love!).

MAKE UP FOR EVER is truly a makeup lovers dream come true.  While they have a lot of stand-out, vibrant shades that adventurous types will adore, they also have muted, wearable colors for the more subdued consumer, and the fact that all products can be used in just about any way imaginable (the HD Microperfecting Primer in Color 4 Caramel can be used on the body to impart a gorgeous sunkissed glow!) makes the brand appealling and appropriate for everyone.  If you haven’t already, I strongly encourage you to go check it out – there’s so much fun stuff to play with :)

PS: The Sephora store in Montreal is getting their own MAKE UP FOR EVER store within-a-store – the first one in Canada!!  You lucky dogs! :)

Have you tried MAKE UP FOR EVER products before?  What are your personal experiences with the brand?  

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Mesmerizing Metallics: bare Escentuals High Shine Eyecolor in Meteorite

Starting my resolutions early, today while at Sephora I picked up an eyeshadow I have been lemming for a couple months now: bare Escentuals High Shine Eyecolor in Meteorite ($20CAD), an ‘iced mocha.’  I think this description is fairly accurate – the shade borders on taupe, with hints of purple and bronze, while still looking like it would fit in the brown-ish family.  I compared it to other shimmering metallics shades I have in my stash (UD’s Smog, MUFE’s Aqua Cream in #2 Steel, and the golden shade of NARS’ Rajasthan, among others), and none came even close – which is AWESOME as I hate to replicate colors! With a spring-loaded applicator (supposedly to allow for easy, on-the-go application), the formula is free of preservatives or chemical irritants.  It’s a highly pigmented formulation that has a very intense metallic finish, and goes on extremely soft and smooth.  I don’t even know how I came across it, as I usually tend to look at only products I’ve heard about before – but it just drew me in for whatever reason, and once I tried it, I knew I had to have it!The photo above is without flash, and it’s pretty true to color (on me).  Below, with flash, shows off a little more of the metallic finish, and pulls out the purple-ish tones.I am super-excited to try out this color; from initial swatches and testing it has absolutely lovely texture, and pretty good staying power as I couldn’t get it off my hand very easily when rubbed.  It doesn’t make any long-lasting claims but I think due to the nature of the shadow, it’ll hold up fairly well throughout the day (which I will update you on tomorrow after I try it out fully), which it did for the most part – through a blustery walk to work and a grueling run at the gym, it managed to stay put for a full 14 hours until I washed it off, with only the slightest creasing on my right eyelid.  And that’s with absolutely no primer, so I’d say that’s pretty darn good!

There are 8 shades in total – most are neutral and all are metallic.  I love a good shimmering shadow to ring in the New Year!!

Oh and PS – AWESOME NEWS!!!!!!!  Sephora finally now offers free shipping in Canada after $75 (it used to be a ridiculous $120, when in the States is only $50).  Everyone needs to rejoice!!!  It’s about darn time this happened, every time I’m requested to do a survey online that’s my very first complaint.  Hooray!!  Now if they would only start selling Illamasqua in Canada, we’d be on to something :D

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Review: Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Stick

Don’t you just love when a lemming is fulfilled without even trying?

Last month when I attended the Sephora opening here in Halifax, I was given a goodie bag of stuff from the Sephora rep Caroline.  I haven’t had a chance to play with too many of the products, sadly, but today I finally tried out the deluxe-sized sample of the Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Stick ($23 CDN for 0.03oz).  The shade I received is ‘Sydney,’ a neutral “pink taupe” color.  All of the shades are named after different cities, and I think the color is to reflect the overall attitude of the city – so in this case, I’d say this color is laid back cool, which is what I think of when I think of Australia :)
The product is described as a “three-in-one lip perfector” that “defines the shape of the lips like a liner, fills them in with creamy velvet color, and then plumps them to their full buxom potential.”  It does not contain parabens, sulfates, or phthalates (Of course you don’t want that on your lips – how do you even pronounce that?).  It DOES contain antioxidant vitamins A, C, and E, and the full-size comes with a built-in sharpener.

(The Lip Stick is on the left, the Lip Polish *mentioned below* is ‘April’)

The stick is about twice the size of a regular lip liner, and creamier.  It still feels a touch dry applying it to the lips, but not uncomfortable.  Those with drier lips would probably want to use a balm of some sort first though.  It goes one very easily due to it’s liner-like shape, and is of medium-opacity – though I can only speak for this shade, as other, darker/brighter colors might be more opaque.  After about 15 seconds, your lips feel slightly tingly, which I assume is the ‘plumping’ effect it claims to give.  If you’ve tried the Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Polish – which I love (smells soo good, and gives amazing, long-lasting shine) – its the same feeling.  Not at all unpleasant in my opinion, though I don’t need lip plumping at all.

While the product is indeed a great multi-tasker, my biggest excitement was to discover that THIS is the nude shade I’ve been looking for, for ages!!  There are varying degrees of ‘nude’ and depending on what you’re looking for, it can be a challenge.  I didn’t want the ‘brown-nude’ shade that’s very popular by the Lindsay Lohan’s and Kim Kardashian’s of the world.  I realized that mistake when I bought MAC’s ‘Freckletone,’ a “neutral peach” that I forced myself to wear down to the nub (hating every minute) because I thought it was a ‘true’ nude on me.  And I didn’t want to go so light that it looks like my lips blend with my skin.  What I really wanted, more than anything else, was this:
Or this:
…which I’ve been trying to recreate forever, but with no luck.  But now!!!!!  My wish has been fulfilled, and without even trying! (isn’t that always the way??)

I have been off the lip train for quite a while, wearing only balm or a very natural shade of gloss for most of the Summer (except when I was wearing NARS Wonder – hot hot hot!!!), but now I can see that this is all going to change.  Since I almost always ‘do’ my eyes, I rarely want my lips to compete.  But, I still want them to look fab!  Now, I finally can give them the love they deserve :D

~Sooo cheesy!~

But true.  Anyway, I think ‘Sydney’ would look good on anyone, it’s a beautiful neutral shade that isn’t too dark or too light.  It might not give you the look that I’m going for – a pale beige-y pink on my skintone – but it will still be very casual and forgiving.  There are 20 shades to choose from, with a great selection of colors.

I say “DO IT!” :)

Are you a fan of multi-tasking products?  Which ones are your faves?  And what is your go-to lip color??  

Thanks for reading!

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9 Comments

Product of the Month: Fresh Sugar Honey/Plum Lip Treatment SPF15

Presenting the grand poobah of lip balms!

First, an overall review. Fresh’s Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment SPF15 feel smooth, non-sticky, with a slight waxy feel that doesn’t linger uncomfortably.  It keeps my lips hydrated but does wear after eating/drinking, and over time (about 2-3 hours).  You only need to apply a touch to the lips to get them covered so a tube could last you probably 4 months if you were using it a few times every day.  The price point is steep for a balm ($26CDN) but is worth it if you’re using it as your primary lip look (as I am).  Also, I’m a sucker for the sugary lemon scent (no taste) and the beautiful, substantial packaging.  One thing to note is the balm does NOT hold up to hot weather – I unwittingly tried to apply it once after being outside for a couple hours, and it smushed over to one side in the tube.  I righted it, and left it alone and it’s fine now, so I think if you just don’t leave it out in the heat/don’t try to apply if after being out in the heat, it won’t be an issue.  Kind of a pain, but it doesn’t deter me in the least from purchasing it again!

I picked up the Plum version of Fresh’s lip treatment back in March and have been enjoying it quite a bit.  It looks quite plummy on my lips so I usually use it when I’m doing a no-makeup look so I don’t feel overdone.  I felt it was on par with Jack Black’s lip balms in terms of personal preference – I reach for one or the other depending on my look for the day, with neither being used more than the other.

This will NOT be the case for the Honey version of this Lip Treatment.  Oh my goodness, how I love this balm!!  Its a pinky-peachy brownish-leaning shade that is very neutral and very wearable.  For me, the color is MLBB (my lips but better), a look which I find infinitely hard to create in almost all lip products.  This plus the combination of the great formulation, and I can see myself shelling out the big bucks for this balm over and over and over again.  Am I happy about it?  Umm…well, kinda :P  I don’t love spending that kind of cash on a balm, but I haven’t found anything comparable in my travels, so spend I shall.  It’s definitely the beginning of a LONG, rewarding obsession friendship! (The pics below you’ve already seen here but I’ll show ‘em again so you can see the comparison easier).

Fresh Lip Treatments also come in original (no tint), Sugar Rosé (rose tint), and a brand spanking new shade called Sugar Passion – a ‘vibrant rouge’ tint.   All have SPF15 and can be purchased at Sephora (in-store and online) and at Fresh boutiques in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Quebec, as well as all across the U.S., and in London (UK) and South Korea.

Have you tried any of the Fresh Lip Treatments, or does the price point scare you away?  For a ‘basic’ product, do you feel that the cost is ridiculous, or are your lured in by the packaging/luxury feel, as I am (what a sucker!)?

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