Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Honey

Purchased once I saw the light after reading a post by Pink Sith.

Let me explain. Over the past couple of years I dropped some serious change on some gorgeous shades of lipstick and lipgloss. I wear them, I love them.

I've known about Fresh lip treatments since they made an appearance on the shelf of my local Sephora… so like forever :). I've always felt they were overpriced. At first Fresh only carried a plain colorless lip balm. Currently the collection also includes two tinted ones. One of which is Honey. It retails for $26.00 CAD, pricey but not as much as a Chanel tube of lip paint.

Here comes Pink Sith and her post on Fresh lip treatments vs lipstick. There is nothing wrong with the former, but why pass up a tinted lip treatment, that "treats" your lips, and acts as a lipstick, "tinted" remember.

Once I saw online swatches of Honey, and did an in person arm test at Sephora, I was convinced this was a worthy investment. Purchase made, no regrets so far.
 Honey is flattering, easy wearing shade of gorgeous. Extremely moisturizing, it leaves your lips soft and smooth. Wears rather well for a treatment as well. And has a sweet lemony taste which I find kind of delicious. On top of all that unlike other lip products I own Honey has much needed sun protection of spf 15.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Vichy Dermablend Setting Powder

Since I have Vichy Dermablend foundation and I love it. I decided to try their setting powder as well. It retails for around $30.00 CAD in Shoppers Drug Mart for a 28g container. 

The instructions included with this product indicate this setting powder is for High-Coverage Corrective Foundation that comes in a jar (which I don't own). I was curious to try it anyways. Especially since it's hypo-allergenic, non-comedogenic, non-acnegenic, fragrance free, spf 30, and tested on sensitive skin.

This setting powder comes with a puff for application; and I tend to apply it as per picture instructions that were included. Basically I use the puff to heavily dust this onto my face. I look as if a bag of flour just exploded in my face. Then I wait a few minutes and using my favorite big dense brush, brush off all the extra product. Presto my face is set for about 6-8 hours.

As you can see in the picture the powder is white but turns translucent once all the extra is brushed off, and is great at keeping my foundation in place.  The claim on the packaging is 16 hours of hold. Not for me, but maybe it's because I'm not using it with the right foundation. Either way it's nice, glad  I tried it, will use it up, and then most likely try something else, because that's just who I am :) But I see myself coming back to this..

Monday, August 29, 2011

MAC 109 Brush

I wanted an awesome blush/contour brush; and I found it. I did a little bit of research, and I finally gave in and purchased MAC 109. It compact, it's soft, it's small which allows for greater application precision, it's dense and great for buffing.
The handle is just the right length and thickness, and it feels well balanced in my hand. It was pricey, $40 CAD neighbourhood, but since I don't plan on every having have to repurchase it, I felt it was worth it.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Clinique Airbrush Concealer

New favorite under eye brightener and dark circle neutralizer. A click-able pen from Clinique makes the application a breeze.

The formula is nicely pigmented, and very creamy. I must say it covers better than my Laura Mercier under eye concealer, and I like this packaging more as well.

It comes in three different shades: Fair (which was way too light for me), Neutral Fair (my perfect shade), and Medium (you guessed it, too dark).

This concealer works for me, it lightens, illuminates, does not settle into fine lines, and lasts all day. At $25.50 CAD I'm not regretting this purchase.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

L'Oréal MagicSmooth Souffle Foundation

Having tried a few high end foundations, I decided to curb my snobbish preferences and give a cheaper, more accessible, brand a try.

Because L'Oréal's magic perfecting base primer was such a pleasant surprise for me. I decided to try their Magic Smooth Soufflé foundation. It was also on sale for $17.00 and I had a coupon for an additional $2.00 off so that helped to tip the scales in favor of this particular brand and product as well.

The packaging is pleasing to my eye :) A heavy, sturdy, thick, glass jar with a magenta lid. The product reminds me of mousse or whipped cream, it is very silky and light.  Picking my shade was a bit tricky though. I did it on my own. Majority of the time, I'm the second shade in, in this case it seemed I can be 4th or 5th. The product looks dark in the container, you think it's way too dark for you, but upon swatching it kind of blends in and matches.
This foundation claims to achieve "velvety soft perfection" as it "magically blurs the look of lines and pores". It promises 12 hours of luminous matte complexion. The magic ingredient, "mati-crystal" which absorbs shine, and mattifies, while letting the light pass through for luminosity.
This is a nice, sheer coverage foundation. Light on you face as well as on your wallet. It's too sheer for my troublesome face. Perfect for someone with good skin who's looking for that polished look. It has a soft dewy finish. However even-though it claims to mattify it only held for approximately 6 hours on my face, so wear time is a bit of a downer if you're hoping for 12. Oily skin types might not take to this as well as someone with dry skin.

I prefer to apply it with a brush rather than my fingers. I feel I get better product distribution and more even coverage. This feels extremely smooth, has that silicone feel to it. For those with silicone pet-peeve you'll probably abhor this product. But for those who don't mind it, like sheer coverage, are budget conscious, or just curious, and accept that they might not get 12 hours of coverage, I recommend you give this a try. Check your local drugstore for specials and coupons to save yourself some money :)

Friday, August 26, 2011

Oribe Shampoo and Conditioner for Beautiful Color

Shampoo: "An ultra-gentle cleanser for ultra-beautiful color.
Extend the bright, happy life of your dye with high-tech ingredients that target damaged areas for intense moisture treatment and protect your hue from the elements."


Conditioner: "This rich, restorative conditioner extends the life of your dye while soothing over-processed, color-treated hair.
Enhanced environmental protection keeps color-sapping UV rays at bay."


Both products are paraben free, and have UV protection to keep your color true longer. As well the "box is sourced from well-managed forests."

I can't tell you how I learn about a product; how this knowledge then turns into an obsession, and a need to own, to try.... it's just too complicated and irrational...

So lets just talk about the product. When I came upon Oribe (pronounced Or-bay) I was very intrigued. I think every woman can agree that our locks are precious to us, and I can't speak for all but I have some serious hair envy. I will treat my hair to the best I can find (budget allowing)... this was a bit of a stretch, but no regrets.

Love the packaging, love the product, it smells a bit like green apples. Ultimate luxury... my hair feels soft, clean, and light.

I was seriously contemplating making this my it hair product and alternating it with Oribe Signature shampoo and conditioner... But I came to my senses and realized that is a lot of money going down the drain... So I will enjoy while it lasts, but no repurchase in the near future...

Oribe Shampoo for Beautiful Color $43.00 CAD ($36.00 USD)
Oribe Conditioner for Beautiful Color $47.00 CAD ($39.00 USD)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Jo Malone Basil & Verbena Living Cologne

Years and years ago, Jay brought home a bottle of Jo Malone Grapefruit & Rosemary Living Cologne. I didn't like it, it was to piney. One day while in a fit of cleaning, I threw it out... and to this day I can't live that down. Almost every single time Jo Malone comes up, I hear "... remember the day when you threw out..." yeah, yeah I remember...

At that time Jo Malone Living Colognes weren't available in Toronto as well... It was a dark Jo Malone time for me :)

Several years later, I finally repurchased. Not Grapefruit & Rosemary (I still find it too rosemary, not enough grapefruit), but Basil & Verbena now that's refreshing.

While this is meant as a room spray, the SA explained this is not a room deodorizer, this is a cologne and if you love the scent it may also be worn on your skin. The only difference other than the size of the bottle, is that supposedly living colognes contain 2% less of the essential oils than actual Jo Malone colognes.

Anywho... I adore it... and spray it way too often, this is a definite repurchase:) ...

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

L'Oréal Magic Perfecting Base

So I thought I was done searching for the HG primer, but who am I kidding, that lasted about two weeks. Then I found myself in my local Shoppers Drug Mart, and I figured why not try something from here. I was drawn to Magic Perfecting Base by L'Oréal, because the size of the product is quite small (so I wasn't committing to a huge jar) and it was on sale for $9.99 CAD.

Also I liked all the promises on the back of the package:
- wears all day
- smooths lines
- hides pores
- banishes imperfections
- suitable for all skin types
- non-comedogenic
The product is a beautiful light pink color and has a gellish type texture. It has no scent. I dot it on my face each morning after moisturizer and blend in. It instantly smooths my skin and makes it feel even and velvety. It does not impart a pink tone to your complexion, so it can be worn alone if you're not into coverage.
My foundation glides on with ease. I get about 6-8 hours of wear before needing a touch up. So overall this was a great drug store buy, and I definitely see myself repurchasing this primer again. Another bonus of drug store makeup, it goes on sale regularly, one need not pay full price if one is patient :)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Clarins Super Restorative Foundation

I was at Shoppers Drug Mart a few weeks back, picking up some essentials... sun block, birthday cards, nail accessories. Most of the time I try to cash out on the beauty side (if they're not too busy), because they always give me samples.

This time around was no different, the SA dropped a few perfume samples in my bag, then gave may face a studied look and said:
SA: "I'm going to give you a sample of the best foundation in the world."
I thought: "mmmmmkay"
SA: "I hope I have your shade."
Me thinking: "How will a packet tell you my shade… shouldn't you do a swatch test?"
SA: "Here it is… Trust me you'll love it… It's the best."
Me: "Thank you. Can't wait to try it."

Well she got my shade right. I'm wondering if it's because there are only 7 in this range, or because she's just that good, or because all the other samples were obviously too dark. Regardless the color is spot on. The foundation, the 'best in the world!'. Ok, I won't go that far, that implies I've tried everything on the market, but I will classify it as the one of the best in my foundation basket (and there are a few in there).

I got seven uses out of my packet, I think I could have gotten 8 or 9 if I didn't get carried away the first time. A little goes a long way with this product. The consistency of it is a bit thicker than other liquid foundations I've tried. It's creamy, and it has a scent, that I find quite pleasant. Coverage is medium to full. I applied it using my fingers, to waste as little product as possible. Using a primer first, then dot, dot, dot, the foundation and cover and blend. Coverage is gorgeous, satin finish, it fuses with my skin, feels weightless, lasts 8 hours plus (depending on the weather).

This wore and looked so good while I had it on, that I'm seriously contemplating purchasing a full sized bottle. It's a bit of a splurge. At $65 CAD it's borderline too much. So I'm holding off for a month, or two, or three ... :)
I highly recommend that you get a sample of this foundation; one because purchasing it might leave a dent in your wallet so you want to be sure, two because the color range is rather limited there might not be one for you, and three you might hate it.

PS. I still love my Vichy Dermablend and DermaTeint, the quality for the price is awesome. I reach for them a lot, but Clarins is calling my name ...

Monday, August 22, 2011

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in Bling It On (250)

Last weekend of July we were attending a wedding. I didn't have time to do my nails so I opted for another package of Sally Hansen's nail polish strips. This time I chose Bling It On for the glitter factor.
Application was easy and painless, with no down time. And the bling factor was incredible. I received quite a few compliments on my sparkly nails that night, and the next day the SAs at MAC were in love with it as well. This color is a definite winner.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

SCORE!!!!! dVb jeans

from Winners. I'm a bit of a Victoria fan... but not enough to purchase her jeans at regular price...
 however this price tag was right up my alley :)
 the style is "skinny flare"... seems a bit contradictory :) but it simply means that they fit snugly through hips and thighs and start to flare out at the knee
 they are black... my flash washes out the color a bit... love my first pair of dVb jeans :)

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Estée Lauder Illuminating Powder Gelée

I was going to stop at the polish form EL fall collection. But having swatched Pure Color Illuminating Powder Gelee at the counter, I started obsessing about it bit. Decided to stop torturing myself and asked Jay for it, and this is the last item I'm sharing that I received from Jay last Friday...
 A try-blend of liquid, gel, and powder this is a truly innovative product. Pictures don't really show it well, but this isn't flat in the palette there actually is a wave. The color is a perfect mix of bronze-peach-gold. It glides on and is extremely shiny/shimmery (not glittery). This is a luminous glow taken to another level.
 If you are like me and have imperfect complexion, it is rather hard to pull this off on your cheeks, even-tough it claims to smooth out your complexion it's not a miracle. But it looks great and wears awesome on you eyes as a shadow or liner. I love to line my lower lash line with it. With a nice big fluffy brush, dust this onto your collarbone, shoulders, arms, for a fantastic body glow. For a softer look apply dry, for an intense "futuristic" look apply wet.
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direct sunlight - the multi colored shimmer doesn't picture well... but it was gorgeous
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Friday, August 19, 2011

Jo Malone Gift with Purchase

Along with the purchase of colognes (see yesterdays post) Jay brought home a bag of mini goodies from Jo Malone. The bath oil was I believe the original gift with purchase; everything else was extra :)

From left to right:
- Vitamin E Nourishing Hand Treatment
- Nutmeg & Ginger Bath Oil
- Vanilla & Anise Cologne
- Grapefruit Cologne
- Nectarine Blossom & Honey Shower Gel
- Grapefruit Body Creme

I plan to sample the hand treatment, shower gel, and body creme. But the mini bath oil and mini colognes are for mini display purposes only :)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Jo Malone Cologne Intense in Rose Water & Vanilla and Iris & White Musk

I read about it on Laura's site one day and the next I was at Holts wanting to smell it. They didn't have it… and by this point I wanted it scent untested. To alleviate my disappointment Marc the best Jo Malone SA consoled me with some delicious samples and added my name to a list, with a promise to call as soon as it arrived.

It was around 3 weeks waiting time. Jay got the call, as soon as Marc found out it's in the loading dock :) I love my HR SAs, simply because they mostly deal with Jay (he works nearby) but know my name (I'm rather forgettable, trust me, I could share stories :))

I finally got my hands on it on Friday August 12th, and I'm in love. Vanilla and Roses. I really wanted to pick up two, but who knows how long this vanilla fad will last, and this isn't exactly cheap. So if I run out of the cologne before I run out of my love for vanilla I always have Vanilla & Anise(fave) and Red Roses from the permanent line.

Cologne Intense collection consists of five alluring scents: Dark Amber & Ginger Lily, Rose Water & Vanilla, Iris & White Musk, Amber & Patchouli, and Oud and Bergamont.

Jo Malone Blurb:
"A collection of distinctive scents inspired by the rich, sensory experience of the Middle East. A place of immense beauty with ornate architecture, vibrant colours and intense scents from the Spice Routes of the vast trade network, the Middle East has a liveliness rooted in history."

Jay picked up Iris & White Musk for himself.
The bottles are transparent black glass...

Rose Water & Vanilla is rich, creamy, warm, exotic, and simply irresistible. Worth the wait :) Iris & White Musk is Jason in a bottle :)

I'm not even attempting a more sophisticated analysis... you're better of googling if you're interested...

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dior Vernis and Gift with Purchase

Accompanying the Lady Dior palette (yesterday's post) were two Dior polishes, Perfecto and Purple Revolution. My nails are still growing out. Currently 4 out of 10 are ready to be painted… so swatches are coming up, but it will be a while. You'll most likely see the colors (if you haven't already) on other blogs before you do on mine.
 Dior's promotional gift with purchase was this beautiful silver Dior mini clutch, that I will totally use when going out.
 Upon opening, some random stuff that I've never tried, so I'm looking forward to it. Included: Capture Totale One Essential, Dior Maximizer lash primer, L'Or De Vie concentrate for the face.
 Then gasp as I pull out an absolutely stunning mini version of a classic Dior 5 shadow eye palette. It is perfect.
 Allow me to compare.
 I will not be swatching the shades, because I don't plan on using them. This is one great addition to my mini collection, which currently consists of only perfumes, but has now expanded to shadows as well :).
 For those interested this is a mini of Mystic Smokys 004
Random Share: last night I had a dream that I received a gift from someone special. He said "It's from Chanel baby..." Upon opening I notice that the labels read "Channel" not "CHANEL"... I let him know. He says "Yeah but it was sooooo much cheaper, and what's the difference anyways?"...OMG!!! WHO IS THIS PERSON?!!!  
I woke up...
On second thought it wasn't a dream, it was a nightmare...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Lady Dior Handbag Palette

OMG I had a great weekend. But Friday night rocked it. Holt Renfrew had a promotion of "gift with purchase" and I asked Jay to pick something up that I've been waiting for. He did and then some… I'm not sure if he's of the human heterosexual male species anymore… I don't know of any other man who enjoys buying and giving as much as he does… I better put a ring on it, hahahahaha….

So for the next few days I'll share some new additions and awesome gifts that accompanied the purchases.

Up first I present limited edition Lady Dior handbag palette. It's encased in a beautiful white textured box.
I'm not sure how many were made worldwide, but my number is 1407.
What makes it even better is that Jay feels obligated to buy them for me. I'm a bit of a limited edition collector, and he informed me that this is one piece he'll always get for me, if or when they are released by Dior. The fact that other people see him as well, reassures me that he is real.
Included with the palette is the standard velvet pouch and a mini brush.
 Getting on to the good stuff. I will not be swatching these shades, because I'll never wear this palette and I do not want to ruin the absolutely stunning design.  This is one of those items I classify as my "makeup art" and I take it out and just look at it now and then, for the sheer beauty of it.
lamplight
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daylight
On a side note. I finally saw Sex and the City 2 this past weekend. Wow… that was pretty horrible. All the Carrie-Miranda-Charlotte-Samantha-isms were just so cliche. The first wedding scene beyond tacky, lines seemed forced, no flow… and it just continued from there. Just the overall concept of the movie seemed weak.

However the fashion was impeccable and gorgeous. Sometimes I would simply zone out and stop listening to the dialogue and watch dreamily the constant procession of runway designs. It is my dream to have around the house lounge wear like Carrie :) But even the fashion was a bit much, it was dessert over and over again.. too much of a good thing. I remember the good old days when Carrie used to shop for a $20 dress to go with her $400 shoes... now Carrie wears a $400 dress and $2000 shoes :)

I read in the paper yesterday that the 3rd Sex and the City movie (the prequel to the series) is on hold, and the ladies are coming back to tv with more Sex and the City episodes. Despite the fail of the second movie, I know I'll be watching if they do…

Monday, August 15, 2011

Lancôme Juicy Tubes

Yup from the 'haul'. Pictured bellow:
Hallucination - Sheer pale peach with gold flecks
Bolole - Sheer coral with gold flecks
 Lancôme's Juicy tubes are flavored (that's what it says on their site)... but all I taste is sweet. I'm not disappointed, it's a settle sweet. The color washes are very sheer as well, once you apply the gloss it's hard to tell what shade you have on. This is not a negative for me... I usually have lipstick or lip stain underneath.  These are also a bit sticky. I know a total turn off for some... but I'm one of the few that likes her sticky gloss :)
Because these are a tad sticky, they wear rather well. 
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daylight - direct sunlight
daylight - shade

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Lancôme Bi-Facil Double-Action Eye Makeup Remover

I discovered this eye makeup remover a couple of years ago.  I wasn't satisfied with anything I tried up to date. One day I went to Sephora and drew lines on the back of my hand with eyeliners and mascaras both waterproof and not. Then I took some cotton pads and walked around the store garbing makeup removers, dabbing a bit on the cotton and giving a quick swipe to the back of my hand, making sure I dragged it across all the lines.

None of the makeup removers could get the job done, that is until I tried Lancôme Bi-Facil. It took everything off with no effort on my part. I was sold...

There was a time when I couldn't find it anywhere in TO. When I did finally find it I bought two. At the checkout counter my total came to over $70.00 (for only these two products), the girl apologized to me and started to look over the receipt to find out where she overcharged me. I told her that she did not make a mistake. Yeah...this is pricey...

I haven't used it for a while once I switched to oil pre-cleansers. However I was happy when I saw it in the 'haul' stash.

This makeup remover has two parts to it, that stay separated and the bottle must be shaken before use. I gave it a gentle shake before taking this picture so that you can see the difference. The top lipid part removes makeup, the bottom water part contains ingredients that leave your eye area refreshed and conditioned, without any greasy residue.

I know that is product is another cult favorite, and I would recommend it to those who don't pre-cleanse with oil... if your budget allows.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Lancôme Tropiques Minérale Bronzer in Natural Sunkiss

I own one Lancôme Bronzer in Natural Suntan that I've purchased myself and have worn practically every single day. This one was included in the 'haul'... the shade is Natural Sunkiss. I was really excited to compare the two.

But first let me reiterate why I love this product: it's made without parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, or syntheic dyes, it's oil and fragrance free, talc free, non-drying (contains Aloe Vera), allergy-tested, and non-acnegenic.
 So Natural Sunkiss seems to have a bit more of an orange base and is a tad lighter. But I find the difference in shade between the two to be so slight as to be negligible once applied. I'm happy to have a backup I didn't have to spend $48.00 CAD on :)
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direct sunlight
shade