Friday, November 29, 2013

Fashion Magazine Beauty Panel - Metal Mania

The best way to make a light, metallic eyeshadow pop is to pair it with a black. To achieve this look, I applied a thick line of black pencil eyeliner and smudged it up to the crease. Then, I chose a warm gold-bronze pigment and limited its application to the inner 2/3 of the eye (to avoid the disco ball look). I find that the easiest way to get the metallic, wet sheen with eyeshadow is by use of the "foiling" technique. All this requires is that you dip your eyeshadow brush into a little water before picking up any shadow. Not only will foiling your eyeshadows make them appear more pigmented, but it will also give your eye look more longevity.

Products Used: Urban Decay 24/7 Glide on Eye Pencil in "Zero", NYX Ultra Pearl Mania Loose Eyeshadow in "Mink", Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balm in "Demure"

How do you incorporate metallic shadows into your makeup look? 

FOOD: The Caprese Pasta with a Twist

Easy Caprese. I have an unorthodox way of eating food by way of mixing the oddest ingredients together. I found a recipe for Caprese pasta here, though IMO no recipe is actually necessary because it's so basic. Caprese pasta is a simple dish of sliced mozzarella and fresh tomatoes and basil, seasoned with olive oil. For lack of good basil at my local grocery store, I mixed in some roasted butternut squash I made a few nights before instead. 

Salty from the mozzarella, acid from the tomatoes and sweet from the squash. I like to think that the addition of squash was my little dash of fall. 

What's your favourite way to eat pasta? 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 CC Cream in Light to Medium

BB Cream yesterday and CC cream today. The Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 Tone Correcting Moisturizer is the exact opposite of the Lioele Triple the Solution BB cream that I sampled. Take note, that the name of this product is "moisturizer" not "foundation". So keep that in mind when it comes to coverage and lasting power.

"Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 Tone Correcting Moisturizer with Sunscreen fights seven signs of aging, while providing instant coverage plus tone correction for younger-looking, even toned and flawlessly beautiful skin. 
Essential Glucosamine Complex... allows CC products to go beyond instant coverage to provide long-term tone correction and anti-aging benefits 
N-acetyl Glucosamine works with moisturizing  niacinamide to improve the skin's moisture barrier, visibly reducing the appearance of hyperpigmented spots and improving the overall evenness of skin tone."
I'm not too familiar with the sciency stuff. Did a little research and N-acetyl Glucosamine is a natural supplement derived from the shells of certain shellfish and insects typically used to reduce inflammatory bowel disease and osteoarthritis and promote skin whitening (as it's used in the CC cream). Not sure how I feel about this.

The Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 Tone Correcting Moisturizer* retails for $32.99. Keep in mind that Olay is more of a skincare brand than a makeup brand, which is likely the reason for the price premium over the old drugstore foundation. Also, it comes with 1.7 fluid ounces; 70% more than that of a regular foundation. Double the amount, double the price. Makes sense. 

Packaging: Yes, yes and yes. I wish all foundations came packaged like this. I love the swirly look, the plastic is sturdy, and it comes with an easily controllable pump.  

Application: You're probably look at 1/2 to 3/4 of a pump to cover your entire face. I'd use my fingers because the consistency of the "moisturizer" is quite light and easily blendable. 

Colour Match: I have to say I'm surprised with how well the colour matches my skin tone. Though, this is a very sheer product so it kind of becomes the colour that you want it to be. If you're slightly more "medium" than me than this will still work IMO. 

Coverage: Sheer-natural to non-existent. The redness on my nose still existed. The finish is very dewy. I feel like I look more oily after compared to before. 

Lasting Power: I can't really comment on this because I really couldn't tell if the product had worn off. Hence, this product is a moisturizer and not a foundation. 

I apologize for the fact that I'm unable to comment on the "anti-aging" or long-term benefits of this product because I haven't used it long enough. 

Overall, this product does live up to its Colour Correcting claims. My skin is a little all over the place, as I'm still transitioning from my winter tan. It has very little coverage, but I feel like this product kind of melds areas areas of hyperpigmentation to with the colour of my skin and smooths everything out.

This would be great for girls (or guys) with near-perfect skin. It's definitely not an everyday product for me, as I prefer more coverage and a more matte finish. One option is to use a powder over it, but I feel like the point of this product is to look natural.

Have you tried this product ? 

Disclosure: I am a #BeautyUnited blogger. As part of my affiliation with this group I receive products and special access to P&G events. The opinions on this blog are my own. Products received for consideration are denoted with an asterisk (*).

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balms in 105 Demure and 120 Vivacious

In the Spark Sessions 2013 Swag Bag, I was above and beyond excited to receive two of the Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balms in 105 Demure* and 120 Vivacious*. Oddly enough, I'm not wearing either of the Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balms that I'm holding but the Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in Sultry that I purchased myself and reviewed yesterday!

Like I said in my previous post, the packaging and sizing is exactly the same as the other Revlon balm products. However, the Lacquer Balms are encased in a shiny pencil form, reflective of the finish of the product itself. 

Demure is a light pink-nude with silver shimmer; Vivacious is a bright pink with a hint of coral and no shimmer. Both feature a glossy finish. 

I can't comment on the lasting power of Demure as it's so similar to the actual colour of my lips. This makes it perfect for pairing with heavy eye or cheek looks. On the other hand, Vivacious lasts 3-4 hours and leaves a subtle pink stain (similar to the Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Smitten).

Other shades of the Lacquer Balm include 110 Coquette, 140 Coy, 150 Enticing, 125 Flirtatious, 145 Ingenue, 135 Provocateur, 130 Tease, and 115 Whimsical. 

I can't express enough love for the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains, Revlon Colorburst Matte Balms and Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balms. In particular, the Lacquer Balms are great products but I guess I was so excited about the matte ones that these pale a little in comparison. There are a multitude of glossy lip colours available at the drugstore. Nonetheless, this is a great option. 

Have you tried the Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balms? 

I received featured products through my attendance at Spark Sessions 2013

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in 225 Sultry

The newest edition to my Revlon Balm collection. The Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in 225 Sultry are finally available in Canada! I mean it when I say that these are probably one of the most delightful (and unique) drugstore lip products I have ever come across. I picked mine up at Target for full price at $8.49.

The packaging and size is exactly the same as the Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains and the Lacquer Balms, except for the fact that it has a chic matte finish. 

Sultry is a rosy pink, with the slightest bits of a warm brown tone. The swatch is true to colour. 

The Revlon Colorburst Matte Balms also come in shades 245 Audacious, 230 Complex, 205 Elusive, 235 Mischievous, 215 Shameless, 220 Showy, 250 Standout, 240 Striking, 210 Unapologetic.

Monday, November 25, 2013

IOPE Air cushion XP Foundation in Cover 23

I've been unaware. The "air cushion" is the latest innovation in makeup/skincare trends. Asian cosmetics brands are known to be ahead of the curve in makeup trends (ie. the BB Cream). From, I received the IOPE Air Cushion XP SPF+/PA+++*. IOPE one of many Korean cosmetics brands along with Tony Moly, Etude House, Skinfood, Innisfree, Hera, and Mamonde featured on Mootta. Mootta also has free-size (one size fits all) clothing available. 

The IOPE Air Cushion is valued at $39.99 USD and shipping for 2 Kg packages is $21 USD ... quite a pretty penny for a foundation. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

FOOD: Seoul Soul Waterloo

There's something about Korean food that I love. What do I like so much about it? Probably the simplicity of the matter, contrasted with the sour/spicy/weird of kimchi. 

All Comfortable and Kushyfoot

Feet are an awkward topic but when you're standing for a few hours or walking around a lot during the day, comfortability is important and foot-talk is a necessary evil.

Kushyfoot offers two footwear solutions for all your winter needs. I received the Fleecy Leopard Flats to Go* and the Microfiber Crew Socks in Black * from their Fall 2012/Winter 2013 Collection for review.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

SPARK Sessions 2013 Recap - Tweets, Thoughts, and Manicures!

This past weekend, I made my way from Waterloo all the way to Canada's first Fashion and Beauty Blogger Conference SPARK Sessions at the Centre for Social Innovation at Bathurst and Bloor in Toronto. There were about 100+ talented fashion and beauty bloggers in attendance. One stylish crowd, that's for sure.

I volunteered to do social media (mainly twitter and instagram) with the guidance of Anum from SummerxSkin. FYI - I was behind the rapid tweeting and retweeting quotes from the @sparksessions account! That being said, I didn't get time to take too many photos, so I figured the best way to document my experience is to do it in tweets:

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

EOS Hand Lotion in Berry Blossom

I have major issues with hand lotions and hand creams. It's not even my hands that have an issue with them. It's my eyes. Products like L'occitane Peony Hand Cream, Soap and Glory Hand Cream and anything from Bath and Body works make my eyes itchy and then I begin to get a nasty red rash around my eyes. Not fun.

But it's not that easy. I can't not use hand lotion. If you've ever worked in an office, you'll know that hand cream is a necessity to prevent deep paper cuts that you get as a result of doing paperwork and filing. This is especially terrible during the winter. Hand lotions provide a lot of slip so that it's not so easy for a sharp piece of paper to slit you open. I'm not even joking here. The workplace is dangerous.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Make Up For Ever Artisan Brush Collection - 154 Buffer Blush Brush, 218 - Blender Brush, 122 - Blending Powder Brush

The first time I ever picked up a brush was a pivotal moment in my quest to learn more about make up. Fingers are great tools, but brushes are much more versatile. Often, fingers just won't do the trick. 

Make Up For Ever recently launched their Artisan Brush Collection including 76 luxury brushes for just about every single make-up task you can think of. One brush involves 25 production stages and passes through the hands of 30 different people from start to finish. Each brush has a bevelled beechwood handle and the bristles are made up of either wavy or straight synthetic fibres to mimic the softness of natural hair. Select brushes are available at Sephora and others are available on the MUFE website

The collection is split into 4 classes 100s (complexion), 200s (eyes), 300s (lips), and 400s (artistic/professional). I received 154 - Buffer Blush Brush*, 218 - Blender Brush*, and 122 - Blending Powder Brush* to review. This was a huge treat for me, and I was truly interested in how these brushes perform compared to my EcoTools and Real Techniques brush options. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

HAIR: The Snip

I love my long hair and as mentioned in a previous post, I dislike getting it cut, coloured, etc... because I trust no one, not even myself, with it. BUT I'm writing this post to tell you that you absolutely should get your hair trimmed, be it by yourself or by someone else every so often. I think my before and after photos are living proof. 

I went to a cheapy Asian salon called Hair CiCi in Scarborough at 80 Ellesmere Road (Northwest corner of Ellesmere and Pharmacy) and and got a quick trim for $10. I asked for something like this (Hilary Duff) and I think the hairstylist did a great job trekking through the jungle that I call hair. Excuse my ratchet appearance, I was taking a break from makeup for the day. 

Before: My hair kind of looks like a lion's mane. Let's be honest. It was a mess. Sure, I just woke up, but even after I brushed through it, it still looked really messy and damaged. 

After: My hair looks clean, healthy, and put together. A lot of the excess weight of my hair was layered out so that it looks a lot lighter and less bottom heavy. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

FOOD: Noodles, Char Siu, and Mason Jars

Guess what. That's cup noodles in that bowl. You would have never guessed that.. huh?

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Fall/Winter Nail Polish Picks

I'm not one for seasonal polish picks. To be honest, I think It's appropriate to wear pastels or brights all year around and vampy reds in the summer. In the winter, I'm on my co-op work term, so before then I tend to gravitate towards polishes that are a little more standout. Here are a few polishes that I've been loving lately:

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

COVERGIRL X The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Capitol Collection Looks

I'm a sucker for avant garde makeup the CoverGirl Capitol Collection that goes with the movie release of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (Friday, November 22,2013) has some amazing makeup looks that just have me jumping for joy. You may or may not have seen these photos floating around online but I thought I'd share!

Oh and don't just look at the makeup. Holy moly. Check out the nail art! 

Here are all 12 looks for the CoverGirl Flamed Out Collection: 

District 1: Luxury 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Philosophy "sweet holiday wishes" Freebie

As soon as November hits, it's time for Christmas movies and hot chocolate. In my eyes at least. That being said, today marks the day that Philosophy is offering a 30mL bottle of their cleanser "Purity" to 2,000 people. 

To enter, all you have to do is send a little "wish" to a friend or family member November 11th, 2013 to December 8th, 2013. On December 9th, 2013 you'll receive a voucher for your free sample to be picked up from a Philosophy counter at Hudson's Bay from the 9th to the 19th. 

Check it out here:

Unfortunately, this offer is not available to those in Quebec. 

I'm about a month away from the holidays (and the end of final exams), so feel free to send a few sweet wishes my way :)  Happy wish-sending!

When do you start blasting the Christmas tunes? Will you be sending a sweet wish this holiday season? 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

All that glitters is .... green - FASHION MAGAZINE BEAUTY PANEL CHALLENGE #35

This post was originally written for the Fashion Magazine Beauty Panel.

What I love about glitters is that it takes minimal nail art prowess to look amazing. Just start with a couple coats of a cream coloured polish. Forget accent nails and glitter ombres, top all your nails off with one clean swipe of concentrated, multi-faceted glitter for a sparkle that is perfect for the upcoming holiday season. 

Products Used: Maybelline Color Show Nail Lacquer in "Tenacious Teal"*, Orly Nail Lacquer in "Mermaid Tale"*

Products received for consideration are denoted with an asterisk (*).

Saturday, November 9, 2013

CoverGirl LipSlicks Smoochies Lip Balm in Sweet Tweet (255)

I already reviewed this product in Smooch, but I'm writing to tell you that this one is totally different. You can read my previous review for background info and thoughts on packaging of the LipSlicks line. 

Friday, November 8, 2013

FOOD: Amada Philadelphia

Four years ago, I went to Amada. I loved it. Hence, Amada was part of what drew me back to Philadelphia this summer, this time with my boyfriend instead of my parents. 

Amada is a traditional Spanish tapas restaurant, opened by Jose Garces (of Iron Chef America notoriety). There are tons of items on the menu and I think each is fairly-priced considering the quality of the dishes. We ordered 6 tapas dishes + 1 dessert, including a few which I had enjoyed in the past, which totaled to about $40/person (tax in). See the full menu here.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Laura Mercier Mineral Powder SPF 15 in Real Sand

Despite the messiness, powder foundation over everything. Due to the natural coverage and mattifying properties, I'm a strong believer in powder foundations for my oily skin, especially products like the Body Shop Extra Virgin Minerals Powder Foundation ($25) and Bare Minerals Original Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15 ($34)  etc. 

The Laura Mercier Mineral Powder Foundation SPF 15 ($42) is on the higher end of the pricing spectrum. The usual culprit, a beauty blog, namely Essiebutton, pulled me into this purchase and I couldn't help myself when I saw it in Sephora.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

CoverGirl LashBlast Clump Crusher Mascara

Whilst on my hunt for a mascara that works for me, I was happy to receive this lash-licious goodie in the Elle Canada Fall Beauty Box. The CoverGirl LashBlast Clump Crusher Mascara ($7.99) launched about a year ago and I had not tried it before getting it in the box. After seeing Christine of Little Red Bow's review, this product has been at the back of my mind for a while. Good thing I got the non-waterproof version, because my eyes don't do too well with waterproof mascaras. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

My Name Necklace Canada Review

I'm not a huge wearer of jewellery or accessories, but I can appreciate a dainty, minimalist piece. Not only does has necklaces with your name, you can also get a variety of pieces such as the little guy shown above and infinity necklaces. 

I received the Silver Initial Pendant with Swarovski Crystal* ($39.95). Along with the "S" initial, Aquamarine is the birthstone colour for my month so I customized it as such. For this the website also offers no crystal ($29.95), Emerald, Amethyst, and Crystal Clear with 14", 16", 18", 20" or 22" chains. This doesn't cover all the bases but it's a decent range to choose from. 

Upon receiving notice of shipping, it took about a week and a half to arrive in my apartment mailbox. It was packaged in bubble mail envelope. The necklace came in a cute little box wrapped up with a hot pink ribbon all the way from Tel Aviv, Israel (note that MyNameNecklace Canada is in fact not based in Canada at all). 

Here's an awkward close up of how the necklace looks around my neck. It's very simple. I don't know how I feel about wearing the first letter of my name around my neck, so I might just take of the "S" pendant if I want to get more wear out of it. In terms of quality, I wouldn't say it's stellar. The chain feels a little flimsy. This necklace also brings me back to a huge pet peeve of mine. Fingerprints. All over the initialed pendant.. which results in me wiping it with something every 5 seconds. 

Overall, I wouldn't pay $40 for a necklace of this quality. It's a sweet piece, but nothing to rave about. 

On a side note... If you go to the University of Waterloo, I'm part of the UW Style Society - a group committed to showcasing unique styles and perspectives of students. There's an infinity necklace that's being given away on their facebook page :)

Products received for consideration are denoted with an asterisk (*).

Do you wear accessories often? What do you think of MyNameNecklace? 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Revlon Colourburst Lip Butter in Berry Smoothie

I'm VERY late on this product review and I've had these photos sitting in my "to write" pile. On the brightside, I think my opinion of the Revlon Colour Burst Lip Butter in 050 Berry Smoothie is a bit more well-formulated. The hype has definitely died down, but I've still been seeing these in favourites posts and so on. 

It must have been a couple years since the Revlon Lip Butters came out. There was all sorts of new, limited edition shades that I'm a bit sad I missed out on. 

I'm a huge fan of moisturising, sheer lip colours and I'm glad that tons of high end and drugstore brands have each made their own renditions of this kind of product. I received the Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter in 050 Berry Smoothie from Cindy in my March Beauty Swap... and I guess I'm quite on the fence about the Revlon lip butters.