Friday, February 28, 2014

L'Oreal Color Riche Lipsticks in 135 Ballerina Shoes, 185 Miss Magenta, 260 Raspberry Rush

Many moons ago (Summer 2013), I won a twitter contest for L'Oreal Color Riche Lipsticks and I'm finally getting into reviewing them now. The L'Oreal Color Riche products come in a multitude of varieties - from matte to balm. These are the classic lipsticks that come in a variety of pretty colours from neutral to bold - 46 to be exact. They retail for about $8.49 at most drugstores. 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Madison Street Beauty Matte Mineral Foundation in Marzipan

It may seem like I try a lot of liquid foundations on the blog, but powder foundations are what I cherish most. I wear powder foundation on a regular basis and typically reserve liquids and creams for special occasions. Loose powders are often buildable coverage, lightweight, and mattify like it's nobody's business. Add the words "all natural" into the mix, and you've got the Madison Street Beauty Matte Mineral Foundation in Marzipan

Let's talk performance first. I'll be straightforward and say that it's perfection for everyday wear. 

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Cream Blush in #225 and #410

The Make Up For Ever HD Cream Blushes ($31) are an innovation on the makeup stage. This past weekend at the What Makes You Blush? event hosted by Make Up For Ever, I took home the shades #225 and #410. I put #410 to the test for a full day (10 hours) on Sunday and was pleasantly surprised with the results.

There are 16 shades in the HD Cream Blush line - everything under the sun from light to deep shades and warm to cool tones. All of the blushes are matte - mainly because this way they're more versatile. If you wanted a shimmery blush, you could just pat a sheer highlight on top for a different effect. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

EVENT: MAKE UP FOR EVER - What Makes You Blush?

This past Saturday was the perfect sunny day to head on over to the Printing Factory Lofts in midtown Toronto to preview the new MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Cream Blushes ($31) for Spring 2014. 

The event consisted of three stations - education, application, and the caricature - and lots of breakfast foods (scroll to the bottom to see my obligatory food photos). 

First off was the Education station. MUFE Education-Artistry Executive Melissa Nicholl spoke about the product development and formulation and answered my burning questions about everything from ingredients to her favourite shade in the line. According to Melissa, the HD blush formulation was tested in front of an HD camera to ensure that it gave the effect of "second skin". 

Next up was the Application station. A makeup artist told me my face shape (a combo of round and square), matched me to one of the 16 blush shades, and provided me with a mini-tutorial on how to use the HD Cream Blush for "Sculpting". She applied the #225 HD Cream Blush with the MAKE UP FOR EVER 148 Blending Brush demonstrating a "press-and-release" motion from my ear to underneath my cheekbone. I got totally stumped when she did the left side of my face and told me to DIY on the other side, but it was a great learning experience! 

[Me + Caricature the next day - wearing the Make Up For Ever HD Blush in #225]

Last but certainly not least was the Caricature station. An image drawn in my likeness (camera, glasses, and all) with a touch of blush. Not quite sure what to do with this. Maybe hang it up on my wall? :) 

[My first time trying David's Tea!]

[Morning Mimosas]

In addition to swatching a gazillion blushes on my arm and learning about the HD Blushes, I got to catch up with some Toronto blogging buddies (and met a few familiar online faces). I also introduced myself to Jessica of Beautezine and had a total fangirl moment when she gave me a hug! 

Thank you to the MAKE UP FOR EVER team for the opportunity to attend such a lovely event! I'm practically oogling and drooling over the blushes as I photograph them for review. They're available at Sephora and Make Up For Ever Boutiques for $31 CAD. An in-depth review for the two blushes I received will be up shortly. 

Are you interested in the MUFE HD Cream Blushes? 

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Friday, February 21, 2014

PURPLE LIPS! Revlon ColorBurst Balms in Shameless and Whimsical

I'll tell you once, I'll tell you twice. The Revlon Colorburst Matte and Lacquer Balms are necessary additions to any lipstick junkie's collection. My own collection of 6 has jumped to 8 with the additions of the Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balm in Shameless* and the Revlon ColorBurst Lacquer Balm in Whimsical*

Thursday, February 20, 2014

CoverGirl TruMagic the Sunkisser Bronzer

The sun is sparse and we could all use a nice warm glow. Good ol' cream bronzer to the rescue. The CoverGirl Tru Magic the Sunkisser Bronzer ($10.99) aims to provide "an instant touch of sun". 

This bronzer is alongside the CoverGirl Tru Magic Skin Perfector and CoverGirl Tru Magic Luminizer in the "TruMagic" collection, both of which sound quite enticing for drugstore products but I have yet to get my hands on them. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Plait Please - Spring/Summer 2014 Trends + Giveaway Reminder!

I tried my hand at another Spring/Summer 2014 Looking Glass trend look (watch the video here). The Plait Please look incorporates a bright glossy lip with a long, low side braid. I never ever wear a middle part, but it's all for the sake of the post! 

Don't forget, you can also get the products to create this look by entering to win a $50 Walmart Giftcard (ends February 24th). 

The Body Shop Vineyard Peach Body Butter and Cream Body Scrub

TBH I just want to smother this all over my body, roll around naked in a pool of it, frolick in a garden full of it, and bathe in it 24/7. The world would be a better place if everything smelled like Vineyard Peach.

It all started with the Body Shop Vineyard Peach Body Butter (of which I fell in love with) and then it became an addiction when I purchased the Body Shop Vineyard Peach Cream Body Scrub. Who needs fancy perfumes when you can just smell of Vineyard Peach?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

EVENT: Pantene Beautiful Hair Bar

The Pantene Beautiful Hair Bars are a set of pop-up blowout bars in Toronto and Montreal that offer free (by-appointment) washing and styling. I went to the location at 357 King Street West in Toronto. Pantene recently launched re-formulated haircare lines catered to different hair needs. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

CoverGirl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3-in-1 Foundation in 945 Warm Beige

For the oily skinned foundation fiends out there, I've heard nothing but good things about the CoverGirl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3 in 1 Foundation + Sunscreen SPF 20 ($11.99). I've been wearing it everyday for the past week. CoverGirl claims the Stay Fabulous 3 in 1 Foundation is a combination of a primer, concealer, and foundation. Drugstore foundations always entice me, as I'm always looking for a cheaper version of my current favourite high end foundation - the Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet Plus.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

HAIR: Garnier Fructis Damage Eraser Line

There's nothing better than a good mystery. Unknowingly, for the past two weeks I've been trying the Garnier Fructis Damage Eraser (1) Fortifying Shampoo (2) Fortifying Conditioner (3) Split Ends Bandage Serum each in a non-descript unlabelled bottle. They contain a phyto-keratin complex and cupuacu butter (fancy, eh?) to reconstruct root-to-tip damage.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Black Cherry

It's not like summer's coming any time soon so... I finally took the plunge and purchased the Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Black Cherry. Though, it wasn't really much of a plunge. I spent around $6 at Walmart. It must have been fate because it was the last, sealed one in the lipstick rack. 

In case you weren't aware, Revlon's Black Cherry is a cult drugstore beauty product. Vampiest. Lipstick. Ever. This is actually my first from the Revlon Super Lustrous line and spoiler alert, I'm head over heels. 

Purple Reign - GIVEAWAY + Spring/Summer 2014 Beauty Trends

Despite Spring and Summer being totally nonexistent in Canada (damn you groundhog!), cosmetic companies are coming out with a plethora of new products inspired by runway trends. 

P&G Beauty hooked me up with a $50 Walmart Card (p.s. you can win one too!!) to shop the trends and recreate them myself. I was inspired by two looks on P&G Beauty's tips and trends Youtube Channel, Looking Glass:
  1. Purple Reign - a soft pastel eyeshadow with a coral lip
  2. The V-Files - 80s Pouffy Hair with a deep side part
Here's how it turned out...

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Anti-Valentine's Day Nail Art

This is for the girls (and boys) who think Valentine's Day is stupid, believe that Valentine's Day cards are a waste of paper, and want to rebel by opposing everything that is milk chocolate and cinnamon hearts. 

First things that come to mind when I think anything but lovey dovey are black and studded. Then again, studs could be construed as the "50 shades of grey" type of romance, but let's not go there. 

Studs and black polish make for easy Anti-Valentine's Day Nail Art . 

Products Used: 
  • Sally Hansen Triple Shine in Slick Black*
  • Sally Hansen Triple Shine Top Coat*
  • Sally Hansen I Heart Nail Art Studs Kit*
  • Nail Art Tweezers

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

CoverGirl Bombshell Shine Shadow in 320 Ooh La Lilac and 300 Ice Queen

In addition to the mascara (see review and giveaway here), CoverGirl also launched cream eyeshadows and a liquid liner. I took the CoverGirl Bombshell Shine Shadows in 300 Ice Queen and 320 Ooh La Lilac ($6.99) for a test drive. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Bioderma Sebium Pore Refiner

The Bioderma Sebium Pore Refiner came to me as a recommendation from the Queen of Skincare herself, Jenn of Procrastinating Pretty. Flashback to a year ago when I reviewed Nanoblur by Indeed Labs, and you can find Jenn's comment where she says it's one of her favourite primers but not a primer. And that's just it. It's not called a primer, but it's an amazing primer. Confusing, right? 

Bioderma advertises the Sebium Pore Refiner as "an excellent base to facilitate even application of makeup". So perhaps it is meant to be a primer? I use it post-skincare and pre-makeup on the oiliest areas of my face (forehead, nose, chin, etc.). The effect is wondrous - no oil slick, minimized pores, and a natural-

FOOD: Pangaea - Winterlicious 2014

Last week was Bannock (see review here) and deja vu, I trekked downtown with the boyfriend to get a taste of fine dining for a more affordable price. By the recommendation of  my mom, we ate at Pangaea, located at Bay and Bloor in Toronto, ordering of the 3-course, $20 lunch menu. 

In general, the entire meal was beautifully plated. Everything tasted good, but there was something missing in the appetizer and entree courses that I can't quite put a finger on. Perhaps seasoning or acid, a little flare maybe. The lemon bar was the highlight of the meal. I love desserts, but I would have preferred more substance and flavour in the other courses. 

Poached Egg and Ham - celariac, apple, frisee, smoked ham hock, mustard dressing

Monday, February 10, 2014

Valentine's Day Nail Art #3 - Roses for the Sweetheart

Roses are red, violets are blue, if you like flowers, this one's for you. If your boyfriend/significant other is too cheap to buy you a bouquet of roses, perhaps pretty roses on your nails might suffice. Probably not, but this design is inspired/"copy-catted" by an 2 year old cutepolish vintage rose tutorial (see here). 

Products Used: 
  • Color Club Poetic Hues*
  • Essie Flawless
  • Essie Enuff is Enuff
  • Sally Hansen I Heart Nail Art Neons in Hot Wasabi*
  • Essence Dotting Tool 
  • Sally Hansen Triple Shine Top Coat

  1. Paint your nails with two coats of an off-white polish. 
  2. With a mid-toned or light pink, make three large dots on each finger (two on the pinky) with the larger side of the dotting tool. 
  3. Draw 3 c-shaped curves around the dot in red. You can be as messy as you want with this, as each rose doesn't need to look exactly alike. 
  4. Clean off your dotting tool and use a green polish for leaves. As a final touch, smooth out your design and add shine with a top coat. 

It looks a bit wonky up close, but from far away, it looks like there's vintage wallpaper or cute little roses on your fingers. This rose design can easily continue through to the spring season, just replace the off-white background for a pastel yellow or mint for a bit more colour. 

What's on your nails? :) 

This is by far the most complex of my Valentine's Day Nail Art series. If you're looking for something simpler or quicker, check out my other Valentine's Day Nail Tutorials: 

Press samples featured. 

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CoverGirl Bombshell Volume Mascara Review + Giveaway [International]

New from the drugstore is the CoverGirl Bombshell Volume Mascara in 800 Very Black. You know it's available in Canada soon when you have to hear all the American youtubers rave on and on about it for a month before it's actually available here. 

Anyhow, now it's tried and true and retails for around $8.99 at drugstores near you. In essence, the CoverGirl Bombshell Volume Mascara is a two-step tube. Step 1 is a plastic brush, quite similar to the classic CoverGirl Lashblast Volume Mascara (which I love) and the volumizing effect is pretty much the same. Step 2 is a more traditional mascara wand that is meant to intensify the darkness of the lashes. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Olympics 2014 Fanicure Manicure.... FAIL!

The Winter Olympics Sochi 2014 has officially begun ! In celebration, I thought I'd do a Canadian "fanicure". 

Now, I didn't think of this by myself. I got it from a nail tutorial via Tessa Virtue (queen of ice dance) and CoverGirl. My attempt was not so stellar. I'd go even as far as saying perfecting nail art is just as hard as becoming a gold medallist or nailing (no pun intended) that crazy snowboard move 100 times in a row. Here's how it went... 

Friday, February 7, 2014

Valentine's Day Nail Art #2 - XOXO for the Cutie Pie

Faintly reminiscent of conversation hearts, this nail design embodies the innocence and purity of grade school crushes and the sweet side of Valentine's Day. Even if you're a total nail art n00b, you can definitely recreate this! 

Products Used: 
  • Indie Polish Girlesque 2014 Polish in "Dolly Berlin"*
  • Sally Hansen I Heart Nail Art Pen in "Turquoise"*

Indie Polish - Girlesque Collection 2014 - Dolly Berlin, Miss Mitzy Cream, and Judith Stein

The last of the Indie Polish Girlesque 2014 collection swatches are here - Dolly Berlin, Miss Mitzy Cream, and Judith Stein. They're all pink! Just in time for Valentine's Day. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

FOOD: Bannock - Winterlicious 2014

Bannock is the Oliver & Bonacini owned restaurant whose offerings are dubbed "Canadian Comfort Food". It's located at the corner Queen St. and Bay St. in Toronto, right beside the Bay. My boyfriend and I made the trek downtown for Winterlicious 2014 and decided on something close to the Eaton's Centre - presumably for the purposes of shopping afterwards - that boy is a shopaholic. 

Winterlicious is basically a Toronto food fest with meal deals (Lunches for $15, 20, 25; Dinners for  $25, 35, 45) and restaurant options at more than 200+ eateries. 

In two words, I'd describe Bannock as... casual and rustic. It's part cafe/coffee shop/restaurant which adds to the casual dining atmosphere. Here's what we ate: 

Black Barley & Piccalilli Salad (Vegetarian and Local) - Ontario Vegetables, Sugar Bee Hummus, Rutabaga, Dukkah Spice. Best. Salad. Ever. I'm a huge fan of the earthiness of beets. Alongside the tartness of the pickled broccoli with dukkah spice (similar to a curry) and the black barley, I might have to try and make this myself. An stellar start to the meal. 

NYC Expert Last Lip Color in Purple Crush

New from the drugstore is the New York Color (NYC) Expert Last Lip Color ($1.99). The range includes 20 attention-grabbing colours for the girl who wants to stand out. I put the shade Purple Crush* to the test. 

Other colours include Red Flame, Air Kiss, Blue Rose, Snowcone, Brandy Sparkle, Flirty, Sugar Plum, Red Rapture, Peach Fizz, Modern Love, Candy Rush, Love My Latte, Creamy Caramel, Traffic Jam, Berry Me, Chocolate Chip, Coralista, Smooch, and Forever Fuchsia. There's definitely something for everyone in this line. 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Tips and Tricks #1 - Beware the Mask [of Foundation]

Coming back from a warm, tropical vacation is hard. It sucks when your usual foundation doesn't come close to matching the rest of your body (and when you're not used to the extreme cold weather warnings). Sure, I can blend a too-light foundation down my neck; but when I've gotta wear a dress or skirt that shows my shoulders or legs, my face might begin to look a little out of place. That's when it becomes a problem. 

Indie Polish - Girlesque Collection 2014 - Aviva the Mirage, Mrs. Burgundy Brixx, and Tanya Cheex

More from the Indie Polish Girlesque 2014 collection swatches for you! Two flakie polishes and a burgundy shimmer. Feast your eyes: 

Aviva the Mirage is a bright blue with silvery flakies. I've always thought that blue polishes looked a little odd with my skintone, same goes for this one. Despite this, it's a nice polish. You've gotta shake the bottle like a mad woman to make the flakies come to the top, plus it's hard to pick them up and place them on the nail. BUT it's totally worth the effort. The end result is a cool looking mani. especially if you can maneuver the polish to concentrate the flakies.   

Ahhh Mrs. Burgundy Brixx, a burgundy with a subtle silver glitter. I have a couple polishes that look like this (minus the silver shimmer). It applies smoothly, is fairly self leveling, and is opaque in 2 thin coats. This one's good for everyday and fairly work appropriate. 

Last but not least, Tanya Cheex is a matte red polish with orange-red flakies. Loving how unique this looks. The downside is that it took me 3-4 coats per nail to get me to the opacity that it is in the photo and it takes a little longer than most polishes to dry. Otherwise, it's stellar. 

More Indie Polish swatches coming your way! I'm very happy to swatch these for Indie Polish, as they're unique beauty items that aren't your typical everyday varnish. You can purchase the collection here

Check out the others in the collection: 

Press samples featured

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