Thursday, January 31, 2013

Josie Maran Argan Mini Color Stick in Rosey

I received this little treat in my stocking from my sister.  It is one of her favorite brands, and I'm also partial to a couple of JM products, specifically her lip balms and makeup wipes.
I never tried any of her actual makeup, this color stick seems like a good start. It's "two in one" kind of product, suitable for your cheeks and your lips. Infused with argan oil it claims to repair and replenish, prevent: dehydration, inflammation, hyperpigmentation, control sebum production. Sounds like another great item in my anti-aging arsenal :)
The color I am currently playing with is Rosey, which is a very pretty soft dusty rose.
I haven't used this on my lips as it has a strong scent, kind of minty-herbal, but I do like this color on my cheeks. Applied either with my fingers or MAC 130 stippling brush. It's just gives my cheeks a soft natural rosy tint. I like it.
As you can see by the swatches the color is gorgeous and very wearable. Left applied heavily, and right light hand and blended in.
Thank sis for a great blush :)

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

SK-II Facial Treatment Clear Lotion

I blame the craving to try this line on Cate Blanchett... she's the spokesperson for this line for a number of years now, and her skin is absolutely gorgeous.

SK-II is based around one main ingredient... Pietra. It a liquid that is naturally-derived from the sake yeast fermentation process.  Supposedly the line was created by a scientist who discovered this ingredient after visiting a sake brewery and noticing the incredible youthful looking hands of the workers. So I'm incorporating this line slowly into my regimen, beginning with this product.

Now the name is deceiving if you are expecting a "lotion" the way we know it, you'll be disappointed, this is a toner, a clear unscented (to my nose) liquid. A gorgeous no-alcohol, no-sulfates, no-GMO toner. As many of you know I have struggled with acne since I hit puberty eons ago, and this while too soon to hail as a miracle product, has been pretty wonderful. It conditions, it purifies, it doesn't dry out, it's a must have for me every single night.

This toner does contain salicylic acid as it is aimed for problematic skin, and while in itself that's nothing groundbreaking, combined with this Pietra ingredient, it does make my skin feel smoother and clearer.

Now for some bad news. This line is quite detrimental to your wallet, but I'm saving and will repurchase this toner ($60 CAD), and eventually try a couple of other items I have on my list.

Monday, January 28, 2013

I read: Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

I started another channel, because I want to share other things than just beauty, but I don't want to muddle my videos... so here you go watch if you please :)


Sunday, January 27, 2013

Sulwhasoo Gentle Cleansing Foam

I am on a never-ending journey of improving my complexion. My wanderings have led me to try a Korean line, Sulwhasoo (I have no idea how to correctly pronounce this). It is a part of the AmorePacific Corporation... products branded under AP name are available at Sephora, but not this stuff.

A little bit about the line first. Sulwhasoo is a Korean holistic skin care line. It combines Asian wisdom and Korean aesthetic in all their products... Ying and Yang. Each product contains a mixture of two key components Jaeumdan and Jaeumdoweedan. Complicated no?
Jaeumdan is composed of: Chinese Peony, East Indian lotus, small solomonseal, white lily, and adhesive rehmannia.
Jaeumdoweedan is composed of: Yai Jiu Hua, mountain peony, satsuma mandarin, ladybells, matrimony vine, adlay millet, and kobon.
And a 500 year refining process, called the Poje Method treats each component to maximize it's healing and beautifying benefits.
Or at least that's what I've gathered from my readings :), I could by way off here..

Reading and learning about this line, had the effect of a spell being cast. I jut wanted to try something. I decided to try a cleanser first... basic yet crucial... also the most friendly price wise.

...and well... I'm going to stop my exploration at the cleanser, because the scent put me off trying anything else. It's not completely horrible (I'm sure appealing to some), and I am getting used to it as I go along, but it's just a strange combination of lemon and pine to my nose. While I can tolerate this in a cleanser, I know I'd detest it in a face cream.... and actually I don't know what their face creams smell like, but I'm just not willing to spend my own money to find out.

Other than the in your nose 'GOOOOOD MORNING' I get each day using this, this is a pretty decent face wash. It foams nicely, as it is the foam that supposed to gently lift the dirt from the surface, and your fingers don't need to tug on your skin... or so I read.
I've had no adverse reaction to it so far, even with the strong fragrance... no unusual breakouts, no dryness, no rashes :)

So I'll use it up... and that's it.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Caudalie Divine Oil

The packaging of this is so incredibly divine... the heavy amber glass grape cluster embossed bottle, the dark brown wooden cap, the gold spray nozzle... so gorgeous.  It alone was enough to tempt me to buy it.
This product is suitable for body, hair, and face, but I only use it on my body. Simply because I don't have long hair, and this would weight down my short style and grease up my roots.. however if I had long tresses, I would be smoothing this lightly into my ends... maybe I'll grow it out. As for face... should I ever suffer from severely dry skin, I'll try it... for now my moisturizers suit me fine.
For me this a body product, and it's a damn good one. The oil is composed of grape, hibiscus, sesame, and argan oils. As well it contains Caudalie's patented polyphenols... a potent antioxidant.  Chuck full of omega 6 and vitamin E it's just a treat your skin craves.

Formulated without preservatives or silicons, you just know it is good for you. As well it is cruetly-free (no animal testing), which just earns Caudalie another point in my books.
As for the product itself... in a word, fantastic. Rich, moisturizing, soothing, healing. Keeps my skin supple, soft, and no winter dry patches in sight. But then again I use so many moisturizers I'd be shocked if I were to find any :) Regardless, the spray nozzle does not dispense a fine mist as I initially thought but a concentrated stream. So best to spray into the palm of your hand then apply to body. I of course tend to mix this with my Kheil's Creme de Corps, to get the best of both worlds.

Scent described as "...subtle... floral... sunkissed... with woody undertones"... yup delicious.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Jurlique Herbal Recovery Eye Cream

It's a mini tube that came with this set. Now that's it's winter time in Toronto, I tend to double up on my eye creams. I use two in the morning and two at night. Double the stuff double the results… right? :)

Jurlique makes such nice products, but the line is so pricey. I already adore their hand creams, I didn't know if I had enough in my wallet to also adore this eye cream.
 So my first impressions of my sample were pretty sweet. The cream is a pretty pale yellow color; and while I was using it, it had a pleasant light creamy texture, and absorbed quickly. Did not travel, and had a very light herbal scent.

It promised to "help brighten, de-puff & revitalize"... hmmm well I had hard time observing any of the above as I put this on before bed, but I did wake up with nicely soft and relaxed under eye area. However I'm also at a point in my life where my eye cream has to do more... line reduction/prevention, some anti-aging benefits and such... I don't need to de-puff as much as I need to make my eye area look plump and youthful... so I was enjoying my sample, but had no future plans to repurchase.  
I also liked this packaging; because a tube is more sanitary than a jar, and more practical than something with a pump (which is never efficient at dispensing all of the product).  But it should have been made of plastic, because one day I unscrew the cap and squeeze some on my finger and the cream had gray streaks in it. I didn't understand why until I looked closely at the threads on the tube... it seems the cream reacts with the aluminum or whatever material the outside is coated in, and I just don't get all warm and fuzzy about the idea of putting this around my eyes... so I'll be parting with this more than half full sample... and I'm sorry for it, because the product itself is rather nice. I wonder if the full sized version is aluminum or plastic?

See gray specks in the cream?
 The gray crud around the threads...
 Yuck... grossness....

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Jurlique Herbal Recovery Night Cream

This is the one item that was full sized in this set.

It's a night cream as stated on the packaging that aims to provide lasting hydration, inhibit free radicals, and protect your skin from everyday pollution.

It has a lovely rich (yet light) consistency, pleasant herbal scent, and creamy white color. This has been my night cream for almost two months now. After I cleanse (first with Boscia oil, then with a foaming cleanser), tone, and treat, I dab a little bit of this on my index finger, emulsify and warm up, then gently tap into my face and neck.

It is quickly absorbed by my skin, does not feel tacky or heavy.  I wake up to a nice even, relaxed complexion. My t-zone isn't an oily mess, which tends to happen with hydrating night creams on my face. Any breakouts look a lot calmer, scars look paler, skin just feels supple and youthful… then the day starts and it all evaporates as it goes along. But before I know it the evening rolls around once again, and the regiment starts anew :)
I love this cream. It really takes care of my face, "herbal recovery" no doubt, it feels healing. I don't think I want to give it up, but I do want to pair it with another product. Something that claims to resurface my face in 30 days (acne scars are a bitch); but it makes my ribs hurt every-time I think about the price (reason why I haven't bought it yet, when I do, I'll be sure to share).

However Jurlique Herbal Recovery Night Cream is simply awesome. Worth having, worth splurging… it's not cheap $48 CAD for a 1oz jar… but not a bank breaker either (for me personally that is). Because I am of the mind, if it really works/delivers I am willing to pay.
Of course this being an organic skin care line, this cream does not contain:
- Parabens
- Sulfates
- Synthetic Fragrances
- Synthetic Dyes
- Petrochemicals
- Phthalates
- GMOs
- Triclosan

Delicious ingredient list and their benefits (from sephora.com):

-Beach tree Bud Extract: Known to help improve hydration in the skin by increasing oxygen levels to help maintain and lock-in moisture leaving your skin looking and feeling radiant and healthy.

-Sodium Hyaluronate: Helps retain and maintain moisture in skin, which aids in improved suppleness and firmness. Assists in rejuvenating the appearance of dry, dull-looking skin

-Glycerin: A natural humectant derived from plant oils to restore moisturisation to the skin. Glycerin helps to maintain the water balance of the skin, keeping your skin conditioned and healthy-looking.

-Moth Bean Extract: This seed extract has effects similar to Retinol (Vitamin A); helps to support natural collagen production and refine skin texture to enhance radiance.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Jurlique Herbal Recovery Gel

This was an item from this set. My bottle is half the size of the one sold separately. Still a nice amount of product. I have been using this every single morning for about 2 months now, and I feel it deserves a quick write up.

First what it is and what it promises. Well it's a gel type moisturizer. Very lightweight and fast absorbing. It promises to keep skin hydrated, even, soft and firm at the same time :), as well as revitalized.

I agree with all of the above. This gel is lovely.
I warm up 1 pump of this stuff, between my fingers each day, and gently tap into my face after it has been cleansed, toned, and treated. It feels very comfortable on the skin, and sinks in almost immediately.

I have a lot of post cystic acne scarring, with an occasional visitor now and then (which you can see if you've watched any of my videos). My skin is far, far from perfect, and this has been good. Anyone with redness, aggravation, or sensitivity will appreciate the soothing effects this has. While occasionally I do get a breakout, I am positive this has not been the cause. On contrary, I believe this is another beneficial item in my regimen that prevents those red spots from appearing (which I am convinced are caused by wacky female hormones and stress).
Jurlique is organic, good for your skin, good for the environment, bad for your wallet :) A 1oz bottle retails for $48 CAD. Still it makes my face feel really nice and comfortable, and while I know I will stray, I am marking this down as something to go back to when one day it will once again become irritated by my lack of commitment and consistency.
Lastly the product lacks all of the following:
- Parabens
- Sulfates
- Synthetic Fragrances
- Synthetic Dyes
- Petro-Chemicals
- Phthalates
.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

I'm a youtuber now and a haul...

and so I've done it... filming myself was a lot harder than I thought... I started by making a "favorites of 2012" video... but after countless re-tries I just gave up... and just filmed a simple haul video... be kind... I am a work in progress :)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

intermission

I'm starting to miss summer... and this is why. This pie was made on July 29, 2012. We had a couple of friends over for dinner, and Jay created this delicious wild blueberry and Niagara peach pie to finish our meal with. The pie is vegan, this picture is not :)

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Phyto Phytoprogenium Intelligent Frequent Use Shampoo

I picked this up at Sephora in December... $27 for a bottle is a lot... but my hair is short and fine, I don't need a lot of product, and I like to show it a lot of love.

Since Phyto makes one of the best smelling conditioners out there... I wanted a shampoo to compliment it. This bottle reads so wonderful, some of the ingredients contained within it are: progenium, olive leaf extract, oat milk, and 44% of mallow extract.

Now according to the packaging, progenium helps to preserve the good bacteria on your scalp and reduce the bad kind. It reinforces the natural defense system of your scalp, and the more often you use it, the healthier your scalp gets.

This is a frequent use shampoo for all hair types. Excellent as I need to wash my hair daily. Currently I alternate it with my Kolrane Shampoo with Oat Milk.

And how do I like it?.... a lot... a lot... a lot. This shampoo is simply lovely, it cleanses, it nourishes, it makes my hair soft and shiny. It's gentle and effective and the product itself is worth the money.

But the packaging needs some rethinking. It is an aluminum bottle with a screw cap... so the opening is quite sizable. The product is runny, it's very easy to pour out more than you need, then try to pour some back in without it running down the side of the bottle.  It can feel wasteful... and it bothered me since the price tag is steep, so I transferred mine to an empty Kolrane shampoo bottle I had.  But  I'd like it if Phyto redesigned it... ala Kolrane style or maybe their conditioner style packaging would be more practical I think.
Oh yeah the scent... fabulous... not flowery... clean and classic.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

All Things Jill Honey Therapy Hand & Body Creme

Acquired at the "One of a Kind Show" in November. My husband loves this company for their tattoo butter.  If you enjoy putting permanent art on your body or thinking about some, you might want to check it out. 

But this post is about what I use, and at the show I fell in love with the scent of this body cream. I keep thinking I smell almonds, but there is no almond oil listed in the ingredients… still it smells so good.
It has nice thick consistency (little goes a long way), but it is light and fast absorbing… qualities many out there will appreciate… but not me. I like my lotions/creams a bit heavy, a bit greasy, a bit everything more. So even-though maybe this would work fine on it's own, I need to mix it with Kiehl's Creme de Corps. The best lotion ever! and an ideal carrier.  By mixing the two I create the perfect potion for my body. It also prevents me from using up the good smelling stuff too fast :)
Will I repurchase?… Possibly next time I find myself at the show, and if the scent is just as appealing then as it is now. But I'm not in a hurry, because I received some delicious creams in December, and the hard decision each night is which one to mix up with Kiehl's :)

Friday, January 11, 2013

Laura Mercier Body & Bath Soufflé Body Crème Sampler

A lovely gift from a friend.  I love Laura Mercier's body creams, they smell delicious. My sampler includes 4 flavors:
- Almond Coconut Milk - I have wanted to try this one for the longest time
- Ambre Vanille - vanilla is one of my fave winter scents
- Crème Brûlée - you just want to grab a spoon and eat this one
- Fresh Fig - delicious

Consistency of these is just right, thick and creamy, and it's impossible for me to pick a favorite. LM makes some of the most deliciously fragrant creams... I want them all... and having 4 just makes me so happy :) 
Each jar in this set is 100g or 4 oz, and I know LM creams are a bit pricey, but I make mine last longer by mixing a dollop of LM with a pump of my Kheil's Creme de Corps lotion. Since Kheil's has no scent, it is an awesome carrier, and also a staple on my bathroom shelf.

I am perfectly moisturized and fragranced after each shower/bath... sometimes I think I was a cat in my past life, because I really dislike getting wet... it's because of the products I get to use during and after that I turn on my faucet :) ... hmmmm did I share too much? :)

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Le Métier de Beauté Colour Core Moisture Stain Lipstick in Rio de Janeiro

A Winners find :) I bought because of the brand, not because I was in I love with the color... although it is pretty and I do wear it... but honestly it's because of the label that I put this in my basket.
The packaging is sleek and simple, a black rubberized case. It feels sturdy. There were 26 different shades named after vacation spots around the world, but only this one ended up at my Winners... well only this one that wasn't sampled to death. In the picture below you may note that the tip is missing... I did that when in my excitement I tried to put the cap on, without rolling down the lipstick first...
Rio de Janeiro is a frosty magenta pink. While the color isn't my fave exactly, the formula is pretty outstanding. Or maybe I should say it's not a color that I gravitate towards naturally... and it's not necessarily a bad thing to mix up my collection a bit :)
LMdB makes a creamy, velvety lipstick that sits and wears very comfortably. It's lightly moisturizing, and the frosty sheen isn't too garish. It's just great formulation, and I look forward to acquiring more shades eventually.
Here it is on my lips... I like it... don't love it... but no regrets with the purchase.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Estée Lauder Sagittarius Compact with Lucidity Translucent Pressed Powder

I received this beauty from my one of my sisters for my birthday.  I love EL, and I check this line faithfully for new releases... especially Spring... I usually loose my mind over EL spring makeup releases... well I have over the past two years... can't wait to see what they've come up with this time around... but I'm digressing... 

This is so special... and I really will only pull it out for special occasions...
I comes with a pretty navy velvet pouch...
and this is the Sagittarius compact... gorgeous!!!
each compact clasp is adorned with the birthstone associated with the sign
the compact contains a 1x mirror on one side and translucent touch up powder on the other with a mini powder puff
it is a tiny compact, and all the more adorable and fun for it... and I couldn't be happier that my sister treated me with this beauty :)

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Avène Thermal Spring Water

So this brand has quite a little story behind it... and it's a good one :)

In 1736 Marquis of Rocozels had a horse (hmmm just like Elizabeth Arden :)). Unfortunately the horse had a severe skin disease. The Marquis let the horse loose in the mountains of France... I guess he loved it, and didn't want to put it down... so instead he let it go in the wild... hmmm maybe he didn't love it... I'm sure France has wolves... anyways the horse wanders through the mountains and stumbles upon the thermal spring near Avène. It drinks from it. Now I don't know how long the horse lingered near the water, or how much he drunk... but eventually it ventures back to the Marquis...its skin healed, it's coat shiny... The Marquis awed at the miraculous recovery of hist steed plants a flag at the spring, and skin challenged masses have been flocking to the site ever since. Seriously this spring is so popular and so legendary in France, that the French government actually subsidizes its citizens visits to the Avène's Hydrotherapy Center. The waters of Avène claim to heal dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, burns... and on and on... basically something's wrong with your skin, slap some Avène on it :)

Now you may be thinking "how much is miracle water worth?" Well flying to France might be pricey... but fortunately Canadian beauties need to venture only as far as their nearest Shopper's Drug Mart to find it. It's a mid-priced line I would say... really quite affordable for all the good it claims to do.

The range is quite extensive. There are products for: intolerant, dehydrated, oily, aging, dry, redness prone skin, as well body care, sun care and men's care. Each product contains some % of the thermal water. I decided to just go for the pure thing and purchased myself Avène Thermal Spring Water (mid November)... 100% magic water and nitrogen gas (non-flammable and ozone friendly). It comes in three sizes: 50, 100, and 300ml. I got  300ml ($21 or $22 CAD) for my beauty shelf at home.

Some other noteworthy facts:
- This water is rich in silicate and trance elements and it soothes, calms, softens, protects, and purifies.
- It's low in mineral salt so it won't dry out or sting the skin (can be used on open wounds).
- It's naturally bacteriologically pure, and the manufacturing process is setup in such a way that the first time this water is exposed to light is when it hits your skin.
Use it anytime anywhere you want. I spray it on after I wash and tone my face in the morning and at night, to set my makeup (although careful not to overdo on this one), before and after a workout... and whenever I feel like it during the day.

Have I noticed any difference? Yes. I hope it's not just in my head though :) But I love this water. It feel so refreshing, soothing, and calming... I feel as if my skin is more even, and any unwanted guests that come to visit, don't stay around for as long. I've already acquired a second bottle, and next time I visit SDM I'll add a smaller version to my purse... in my head or not, I want this on my face everyday, several times a day :)

Friday, January 4, 2013

Evil Eye Bow Necklace

So I have been looking for an evil eye bracelet for over three years now.

I have a problem (one of many I've been told),  I imagine something in my mind first, then I go shopping for it. This happens with regards to anything, clothes, jewelry, shoes, accessories, home decor... the thing is what exists in my mind, does not exist in stores when I want to buy it... and so I get frustrated and exasperated... but it does tend to save me money.

When I actually found what I was looking for (a year ago or so), I was so excited... then I looked at the price tag and my heart hit the floor... it is a very pretty bracelet, but not pretty enough to justify debt. So I packed it away in the back of my mind, for a day that may never come :)

A week ago my husband presented me with this little trinket. Not a bracelet but a necklace. I didn't even know I'd like one until I saw this. This is so much fun, it's unique, and at the same time a bit freaky, and I love it. It also didn't cost an arm and a leg. Those are not diamonds but glass, and that's not rose gold, it's rose gold colored metal... it only cost him $29.99 :) A very smart purchase indeed :)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Disney Cinderella Collection by Sephora Compact

This was spotted at Sephora by my husband while we were doing our holiday shopping last month... (I miss the holidays)... I wasn't aware but Sehora had a whole exclusive Disney Cinderella collection, this being just one of the many items. Regardless my husband picked this up and said "you need it" :) I couldn't agree more.  It's a compact mirror, and I really needed to replace the current one I had, which was really, just half of a compact, all beat up and ugly.
It cost me $24 CAD, and as far as I know is no longer available... but I might be wrong on that one. The packaging is really gorgeous and just pulls you in.
According to Sephora this compact is mirrored after the clock at the ball that ends Cinderella's spell. For me it also brings to mind the compass from "The Golden Compass" :) Either way it's gorgeous. Has really nice heft to it, and feels very substantial. The middle part is actually faceted, but it isn't visible in my photos.

The only flaw in this compact, which I find quite funny, and it doesn't take anything away from the beauty of it (for me at least), is the incorrect number 4 numeral. I'm not sure if it's actual design mistake, or if it was done on purpose but 4 is not supposed to be "IIII" but "IV"...
A lovely touch on the inside of the compact, it the "time for your moment" quote on one of the mirrors.
The compact contains two mirrors the one with the quote is a regular 1x magnification, the other is larger, but I'm not sure by how much. Still you can see it by the reflection of the faux fur I photographed it on.
I really love this compact, and glad my hubby knows me so well as to keep his eye open for items I miss :)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

December, 2012 Empties

Another empties post... December was a little slow for using stuff up, but I do have 5 products...

1. Givenchy Blush Gelée Jelly Blush - this was a limited edition item from their spring 2011 line... and it was lovely... I actually can't believe I used up a blush...

2. SheaTerra Organics Rose Water Shea Butter Hand Crème - this was a great hand cream... rich and moisturizing.

3. Philosophy Lip Gloss in Peppermint Bark - I acquired it in Dec. 2011, and used it up in Dec. 2012... it took me a while... I really enjoyed this gloss, and I missed it on my lips when I run out. I have a few glosses to get through... but I'm going to buy myself another one by Philosophy Dec. 2013 when the new holiday scents are available... yup that's a promise to myself :)

4. Klorane Shampoo with Quinine and B Vitamins - it didn't stop my hair from falling out... but it's still a great shampoo. It's all gone now... and I think I'll repurchase :)

5. earth to body skin nutrition argan neem foot cream - nice cream...not so nice fragrance... it's just not for me.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

HAPPY NEW YEAR BEAUTIES!!!

HERE IS TO A FABULOUS NEW YEAR :)

Resolutions:
1. Stop bumping into things knee first.
2. Get a haircut, on regular basis.
3. Paint my nails...
4. Repaint our bedroom... that pink has been a mistake from the very beginning... can't believe Jay has put up with it for so long :)
5. Put my face on YouTube... hmmmmm...

Simple,straight forward, and within reach :)