Friday, July 31, 2015

THEFACESHOP Clean Face Acne Solution Foaming Cleanser, Mild Toner & Oil-Free Moisturizing Cream for Acne-Prone Skin // #CBBdoesTHEFACESHOP

Let’s talk skincare. I’ve actually decided to put away my Guerlain Blanc De Perle because while the whitening/brightening effect works, it makes the skin on my face 3-5 shades lighter than that of my body, plus the line wasn’t doing it for me in terms of oil control. For the month of July, I’ve swapped the Blanc De Perle out with THEFACESHOP Clean Face line, which is targeted for peeps with oily/acne-prone skin. It’s summer and my skin is, in fact, extra oily and extra acne prone. THEFACESHOP to the rescue! 

Thursday, July 30, 2015

EVENT: Lush Oxford Street Collection Preview // Fall Winter 2015

Colours and scents galore. My scents are delighted by the Lush Oxford Street Collection. In April 2015, the largest Lush store in the world was opened on London, England's Oxford Street. With this grand opening, Lush launched more than 200 brand new products to commemorate its 20 year anniversary. There are a TON of new bath and body innovations in the collection including new bath bombs, bubble bars, showders, shower creams, shower jelleies, cold pressed soaps, hot oil hair treatments and more. A portion of the 200+ items in the Oxford Street Collection are being rolled out in Canada this month

Here's a few of the awesome new things you can expect to see at your local Lush: 

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Lise Watier EYEvolution Collection // Fall 2015 #EYEvolution

Long-wearing colour. High impact. A line that combines the two? Lise Watier calls it an #EYEvolution. This August, Lise Watier releases an eyeshadow palette, cream eyeshadow bases, a mascara, CC primer, and liners - all geared towards the makeup expectations of the modern day woman. 

Monday, July 27, 2015

GIVEAWAY: Festival Survival Kit! ($200 value) #ad #contest

It ain’t summer without a few festivals.  Whether you like dancing competitions, live music, street food or just laying around in the sun, there is some sort of festival for everyone. As a homebody, I’m usually in bed eating pizza or scrolling through my blog feed but festivals are a really good excuse to get some sunshine. I’m partial to food festivals (#fattylife) but if you’re cooler than me (which you probably are) I’m sure you’re hanging around at festivals like Osheaga, Veld and Way Home.  

Thanks to Johnson & Johnson Inc., I’m giving away a festival survival kit valued at $200. Some noteworthy products (based on my personal experiences) include the AVEENO Sun Protect & Hydrate 30 SPF and AVEENO Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer (to prevent sunburn and keep your skin looking like a baby’s bottom), BAND-AID Brand Waterproof Touch-Strips (for when you decide to climb over a fence and get a boo boo on your knee), BENADRYL (for when you’re outside starring at the pretty stars but there are mosquitoes EVERYWHERE and you’re in desperate need of itch relief), CLEAN & CLEAR Oil Absorbing Sheets (if you’re anything like me and become an oil slick as soon as you step out of the house), Listerine (for the days when you forget your toothbrush) and Polysporin Assorted Blister Pads (for when you wear a gorgeous pair of shoes that are painfully uncomfortable).


  • AVEENO Daily Moisturizing Body Wash
  • AVEENO Daily Moisturizing Lotion Sheer Hydration
  • AVEENO Sun Protect & Hydrate 30 SPF
  • AVEENO Positively Radiant Targeted Tone Corrector
  • AVEENO Positively Radiant Face Wash (Cleanser)
  • AVEENO Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer SPF 15
  • AVEENO Positively Nourishing Shampoo
  • AVEENO Positively Nourishing Conditioner
  • Band-Aid Brand Waterproof Tough-Strips
  • Benadryl Bug Bite Relief Itch Stick
  • Clean & Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets
  • Clean & Clear Night Relaxing All-in-One Cleansing Wipes
  • Listerine Pocket Paks
  • Listerine Total Care Whitening Easy Sliding Floss
  • Polysporin Complete
  • Polysporin Assorted Blister Pads
  • Polysporin Cracked Heel Cream
  • Polysporin Poly to Go
  • Polysporin Pain and Itch Relief

What festivals are you attending this summer? 

This post was sponsored by Johnson & Johnson Inc. Photos courtesy of Reprise Media. Contest is open to Canadian Residents, excluding Quebec. Must be 18 years or older to enter. Winners will be chosen at random. The winner is required to provide their contact information, sign a release, answer 3 questions related to Johnson & Johnson Inc. products, and answer a mathematical skill-testing question in order to receive their prize.

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Saturday, July 25, 2015

EVENT: Estee Lauder Fall 2015 Preview

Last week, I visited the Estee Lauder HQ in Yorkville (Toronto) to preview releases for Fall 2015. Here's what's coming soon from Estee Lauder... 

Modern Muse Le Rouge ($122 for 100mL) is all about being daring and being an inspiration. Fittingly, Kendall Jenner is the face of the fragrance, a combination of a rose and velvet creme accord. Available July 2015. 

Thursday, July 23, 2015

HAUL: BBLOGGERSCA Swap + Toronto Meetup #2

Sunday, July 19, 2015 I went to Joey's at the Eaton Centre in Toronto carrying two bags full of 10+ pounds of makeup, met up with a few lovely Canadian Beauty Bloggers and this is the stuff I left with....

  • Sephora Classic Travel Refillable Powder
  • Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser in Nude
  • Revlon Base Coat
  • Caudalie Divine Oil 
  • Benefit Girl Meets Pearl 
  • Essie Shine of the Times - CULT LIMITED EDITION POLISH (thanks Shawna)
  • Real Techniques Accent Brush 
  • Bobbi Brown Luminous Moisturizing Foundation in Warm Sand 2.5

  • NYX Love In Rio Eyeshadow Palette
  • Clinique Chubby Stick Baby Tint in Budding Blossom 
  • Benefit They're Real Push Up Liner
  • Sephora + Pantone Universe Light Flicker Mascara in Ombre Blue 
  • Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner
  • Tarte Lip Surgence in Lovely 
  • YSL Brow Pencil

  • Duralash Naturals Flare Short Black 
  • Paperself Eyelashes in Peach Blossoms Love and Romance
  • The Extreme Collection Lashes in Fabulous (because we all need fabulous lashes)
  • CoverFX 160 Foundation Brush
  • No label dual ended eyeliner brush 
  • MAC 224

While I don't have reasoning for everything that I picked up, I left with significantly less stuff than I came with. Special thanks to all the CBB gals for taking my stuff and sharing some of theirs. Have you tried any of these products? What have you been hauling? 

Learn more about the Canadian Beauty Bloggers Network at

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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

EVENT: Essence Fall/Winter 2015 Preview #EssencePaintNite

While I'm enjoying the warm weather here in Toronto, the Essence Fall/Winter 2015 Collection Preview gave me something to look forward to in the coming months. The event was held at Walnut contemporary, a small art gallery in King West. Here's what I was up to yesterday... 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Make Up For Ever Step 1 Skin Equalizers in Mattifying Primer and Yellow Radiant Primer

Launched a few months ago, the Make Up For Ever Step 1 Skin Equalizers ($42 each) are the new and improved versions of the MUFE HD Primers. Similar to the HD primer line, the MUFE Step 1 Skin Equalizers are available in various shades to tackle various discolouration. More specifically there are 10 variations in the Step 1 Skin Equalizer line - 5 for texture and 5 for tone.

TEXTURE - mattifying, smoothing, hydrating, nourishing, redness correcting
TONE - pink, blue, yellow, peach, caramel 

TO APPLY: redness/radiance before mattifying/smoothing OR redness/radiance after hydrating/nourishing

The new primers are packaged in squeeze bottles, which are a gazillion times more travel-friendly than the HD primer pump bottles. Thanks for that MUFE!

Friday, July 17, 2015

FOOD FRIDAY: Gourmet Pizza with Pui Yi

Last Friday, my friend Pui Yi (aka yeezus2china aka blogger at Grobo) came over to make pizza! Pizza is always good. Especially when it's fancy and homemade. Replace canned tomato sauce for fresh pesto, add a bit of sweet with some caramelized nectarines and you've got a gourmet pizza. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Addicted to Blush Tag

I'm a little ashamed to say that I own less blushes than I can count on my fingers and toes (*ONLY* 18 to be exact). Even so, when the blush queen (Vanessa) tags you in the Addicted to Blush Tag, you do it. 

Based on the sheer number of reviews that I write per week, you'd think that I'd have 50+ lying around but I've made a concerted effort to declutter, culling the ones that I don't use or don't like. 18 is excessive for a normal human. It's funny how anyone can really justify owning more than one or two.

Anyways, onto the tag...

1/ What colour suits you the most? 
Orange-leaning pinks. Almost-reds. Most of my blushes are warm pinks. 

2/ Pressed/Cream/Loose blush? 
I'm preferential to cream blushes. Especially ones marketed as multi-use lip/cheek products. 12/18 of my blushes are cream. 

3/ Favourite matte blush? 
Ummmmmmm.... a tie between the MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Cream Blushes and Lise Watier Fondant Supreme in Sand. The cream-to-powder formula is similar in both blushes and they *blend like a dream* onto the skin. 

4/ Favourite shimmery blush? 
NARS Orgasm. There's a reason why everybody loves it. For one, it has an overtly sexual name. Secondly, there's something about the warm peach pink pigment with gold glitter running through it. 

5/ Favourite cream blush? 
Josie Maran Argan Infinity Lip & Cheek Creamy Oil in Endless Guava. My cheeks are the driest part of my face and I'm obsessed with the natural yet oily/sheeny finish that the blush gives to my face.

6/ Favourite drugstore blush? 

NYC, Milani Baked Blushes, and Rimmel Cream Blushes are also highly recommended :) 

7/ Favourite high end blush? 

8/ Favourite bright blush? 
NARS Desire. The teeniest tap of product yields great pigmentation and it can go oh-so-wrong. But it looks amazing done right. 

9/ Biggest blush disappointment/regret? 
CoverGirl and Revlon powder blushes. Both are chalky and hard to work with. 

10/ Best blush packaging? 
In terms of what I own... NARS blushes (even though they're a pain in the butt to keep clean) fit nicely in a row and there's something so luxe about the rubber-matte material. 

Then there's Kjaer Weiss, Paul & Joe, Hourglass, Charlotte Tilbury and Hourglass, which I don't own but are very nice to look at. 

11/ What's on your blush wishlist? 
Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes, Kjaer Weiss creams Paul & Joe creams, Chanel, Bobbi Brown, Dior... no particular colours but the formulations... and the list goes on. 

12/ #1 Holy Grail blush? 
I love all my blushes equally. Okay maybe NARS Orgasm

There's so *few* that I can photograph them in one shot and fit them snugly into a small cardboard box. 18 total...12 Cream, 6 Powder, 15 reviewed. 

If you're curious...a list of all the things in my blush box: 
- Benefit Dandelion 
- NARS Orgasm 
- Vasanti Luminous Cream Blush in Pinnacle

Have you done the Addicted to Blush tag yet? I tag you! What's your favourite blush? 

Press samples, gifts and purchased items featured. Press samples are denoted with an asterisk (*). 

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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Matics in M-11 Matte Black & D-21 Diamond Turquoise & Aqua Rouge in #21 Cool Candy Pink

If you didn't already know, Make Up For Ever's Aqua collection is amazing - waterproof eye and lip products in a whole lot of colours! Now, they're extending the range with 5 new Aqua Matic shadow pencils and two new Aqua Rouge lip colours. 

New Aqua Matics // M-11 Matte Blacm, D-21 Diamond Turquoise, ME-32 Metallic Golden Khaki, D-70 Diamond Peach and ME-80 Metallic Pink (in addition to the original range of 10 shades) 

New Aqua Rouges // #21 Cool Candy Pink and #23 Apricot Pink (in addition to the original range of 18 shades)

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

NYC New York Color Big Bold Angel Lash Mascara // #NYCBeautyPro

Defy gravity with your lashes. That's what the New York Color Big Bold Angel Lash Mascara ($4.99) says it offers. According to NYC, "angel lashes" give a wide-eyed look, pure, and innocent yet so alluring...full-bodied lashes, fresh and full-on fluttery. I like the sound of that. 

Monday, July 13, 2015

Rimmel London 60 Seconds Nail Polish by Rita Ora in Sweet Retreat, Tangerine Tent & Glaston-Berry // #RimmelXRitaOra

Oh summer. How I love your nail polish launches. This year, Rimmel released 8 new shades of the 60 Second Nail Polish ($4.99) with Rita Ora, complete with adorable floral patterns on the 8mL baby bottles. 

I'm not sure if Rimmel reformulated the 60 Second Nail Polish line (see previous review), but these polishes seem to be thinner, smoother, and less likely to chip on my nails (3-4 days), with added benefit of drying in 60 seconds as the product name states. All shades are opaque in 2-3 thin coats. 

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Rimmel Wonder'Lash Lift Me Up Mascara

Another month, another drugstore mascara launch. 

This July, it's the Rimmel Wonder'Lash Lift Me Up Mascara ($8.49), formulated with cucumber and "vitamins" (not exactly sure which ones) to condition lashes, wake you up with its fresh scent, and open the eyes with clump-free volume, lift and length. 

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

New Shoppers Drug Mart App + "Mystery" Quo Lipstick #MyOptimum

There's this lipstick I've really been digging. It's a fuchsia colour, comfortable, super creamy and lightweight but also very pigmented with a slight glossy sheen. It's really nice. 

I have no idea how much it costs and no idea of the shade name. I received it in a goodie bag and threw out the cardboard box that it came in before reading all the important info. For now, we'll call it the "Mystery" Quo Lipstick. If you know please tell me. I'd be down to buy more of these with my Optimum points and would like to know if this formulation is limited edition (because the packaging looks like it!). 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Bronze Fusion in 10M and 15I

Summer is here and it's time to bust out the bronzer.

In May, Make Up For Ever released its Pro Bronze Fusion ($42) with the Pro Bronze Fusion Kabuki Brush ($38) at Sephora, Sephora online, and Make Up For Ever Boutiques. To be honest, these guys are much more impressive than the bronzer in the Pro Sculpting Duos ($45) released a couple months prior. 

Monday, July 6, 2015

Seche Vite Fast Drying Top Coat and Seche Base Ridge Villing Base Coat

All hail Seche. The Seche Vite Top Coat ($8.95) is coveted by nail addicts everywhere. I hadn't even considered trying it until receiving it at an ACI Beauty event where I also received the Seche Base Ridge Filling Base Coat ($10). 

First and foremost, I'll be straight up and say that I dislike the Seche Base Ridge Filling Base Coat. While it does a great job at filling in ridges and preventing yellowing of the nail, it made my nails weak and peel-y. 

Here are my thoughts on the Seche Vite Fast Drying Top Coat

The Good: 
  • Dries in less than a couple minutes
  • Leaves nails looking super glossy 
  • Keeps my nails from chipping for 3-4 days. However, on my mum, keeps her mani going strong for 7+ days. 

The Bad: 
  • Smells like turpentine mixed with various other toxic chemicals. I’ve read a few articles suggesting that the stuff can cause cancer (however, this is not confirmed by research). I’d suggest using the product in a well-ventilated area or wearing a gas mask. Good thing the scent diminishes as soon as it dries. 
  • I haven’t had my bottle long enough for this to happen but over time, the product gets really gloopy and unusable.

When it comes to clear top coats, I feel like it’s always some sort of trade-off between drying time, shininess, and lasting power. In this case, Seche Vite is primo on the first two and so-so on the lasting power. While the Seche Vite is an excellent top coat, I prefer waiting a little longer for some extra chip-preventing power of 5-7 days (which I get from the Revlon Gel Envy Diamond Top Coat). 

Have you tried any nail products from Seche? 

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Friday, July 3, 2015

essence Smokey Eyes Sets in Smokey Day and Smokey Night

Smokey eyes are easily achieved with the essence Smokey Eyes Sets ($3.99, exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart)An eyeshadow palette with all the colours you’ll ever need to create a sultry, smokey eyeshadow look isn’t a new or unique concept but with essence, it’s portable and affordable. Teenage Stephanie would have loved this.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

On Whitening & Brightening Skincare...

Skin whitening is the practice of using chemicals (aka skincare) to lighten skin tone. In the Asian markets, whitening products are HUGE. I prefer the tanned look over the paler complexions coveted on the other side of the world but lately I’ve been using whitening products. Why? For one, I like to try all the things. Secondly, my hope is to lift some of my hyperpigmentation due to acne scarring and sun freckling. All in the sake of vanity of course, but who doesn’t want their skin to be perfectly uniform and never, ever have to wear foundation? 

In addition to my regular skincare routine…

I’ve been using the Shu Uemura Whitefficent Cleansing Oil ($92, 450 mL) as my go-to makeup remover for the past year. The Whitefficent variation of the Shu cleansing oil seems to be discontinued on the site but now there’s the Blanc:Chroma Cleansing Oil ($92, 450 mL), which has similar claims of polishing away dead cells of melanin and makeup for a brighter, smoother looking complexion. As a makeup remover, it’s amazing. A couple pumps all over, then I splash my face with water and it immediately turns into a milky liquid, a few more splashes and my face is clean and without any oily residue. Over time, I’ve noticed my acne scars fading quicker than before. The packaging is amazing (though limited edition from the Mika for Shu collection) but this year there’s the Yaz for Shu collection, which is still available. On another note, the price is up there but the bottle has lasted me more than a year. 

Since April, I’ve been testing out the Estee Lauder Crescent White Full Cycle Brightening Moisture Crème ($83, 1.7 oz). Similar to the Shu Uemura Whitefficent Cleansing Oil, it’s quite pricey, but also claims to lift pigmentation, uneven tone and hyperpigmentation. As a crème, it’s fairly lightweight, sinking into the skin within minutes but potent as a hydrating product. I use it a couple evenings per week in lieu of a sleeping mask and when I wake up, my skin feels plump and looks refreshed.  

If anything, it’s not just about the whitening. They’re effective multi-use beauty products, not just whiteners – the cult Shu Cleansing Oil is a stellar makeup remover and the Estee Lauder Crescent White Full Cycle Brightening Moisture Crèmeis a deep moisturizer. Now that it’s summer, my face is significantly lighter than my neck (thank the beauty gods for self-tanner and bronzer), which is proof that these guys really work. 

Have you tried any whitening skincare products? What did you think? 

End note: There’s a common misconception that some cultures that “whiten” their skin in efforts to look more like westerners but that is not usually the case. I won’t go into this here but Gerry of the Bunnie Hole sums up the issue perfectly in her video about whitening

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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Happy Canada Day / Fave Canadian Brands!

It's Canada Day (aka day off... yay!!!). I searched my room for a few red/white things (colours of the Canadian flag). Funnily enough, I couldn't find any red/white items that were Canadian, with the exception of a Shoppers Drug Mart gift card.