Sunday, July 31, 2016

Sample Sunday | Elizabeth Arden Prevage Anti-Aging Antioxidant Infusion Essence

Happy Sunday!  Today's sample of the day is Elizabeth Arden's Prevage Anti-Aging Antioxidant Infusion Essence.

An essence is basically a powerful blend of antioxidants which treat skin on a cellular level.  They help improve skin texture,  tone and fight wrinkles and fine lines.  They are a very important step in Korean skincare yet remain a bit of a mystery to the western world.

Essences are applied morning and night after cleansing and toning.  Most essences are liquids and can be applied with a cotton pad/ball or by hand.  Personally I find that you waste a lot by using cotton so I prefer to use my hands.  How does one apply a liquid with their hands?  Easy.  Pour a bit onto the palm of your hand and carefully splash it on while tapping it in.  Remember your Dad applying after shave?  Just like that!

Arden's Prevage Anti-Aging Antioxidant Infusion Essence claims to infuse skin with instant hydration and antioxidants.  It is said to boost skins moisture levels both instantly and over time leaving skin feeling soft,  smooth and conditioned.  Luckily I received a generous sample of it so I was able to get quite a few uses out of it.

I found that my skin soaked it right up. By the time I replaced the cap it had absorbed into my skin.  My face definitely felt hydrated,  smooth and ready for serum and cream.  I didn't experience any irritation or breakouts and my skin has been looking a lot more even and feeling smoother since using it.

Having said that,  without testing this for at least a month I can't say whether or not it truly works.  I do feel like it's a promising product and I will be purchasing the full size.

Have you tried this essence?  How about the Prevage line in general?  I would love to hear your thoughts!

Friday, July 29, 2016

My All-time Favourite Foundation | Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup Swatches + Review

This post is seriously overdue! I've been using DW for almost a year now and I have nothing but positive things to say about it!  I have tried other foundations since purchasing DW for the first time back in September but I always return to Lauder.

I was initially matched at Sephora to the shade 1N2 Ecru and although it worked well for me,  I have since switched over to the warm range.  I love the fact that there are three ranges (cool, neutral and warm) and within that there are intensity levels. This allows for greater flexibility in finding your perfect shade.

As far as coverage goes,  it's literally photoshop in a bottle!  It can conceal blemishes,  scars and any other imperfections you want to hide.  I have succesfully covered minor acne scarring as well as redness on my cheeks with this stuff.  Seriously,  say bye to your concealer because you won't be needing it anymore! It doesn't take a lot of layering to build coverage either.  In fact, less is more!

To get a flawless finish I recommend applying it to a well cleansed and moisturized face.  As with any foundation, a solid skincare regime will make for easier application,  blending and reduce the likelihood of it clinging to dry patches.

Secondly,  use a good quality foundation brush to apply it.  If you want flawless,  full coverage you definitely want to use a brush. If you want less coverage (medium) than use a beauty blender.  Another important thing to note is that it sets quickly so you need to move fast when blending otherwise you will have an uneven finish.

If you're like me and don't/can't be bothered to touch up your makeup all day you will appreciate the fact that this is long wearing. And by long wearing I mean it's not coming off until you choose to take it off.  I have gotten 15hrs of wear with this foundation and it still looks as good at the end of the day as it did in the morning.  Heat, humidity and water are no match for this stuff.  Seriously,  you can steam your face and it won't budge (although I wouldn't recommend it.)

Although primer and powder aren't necessary,  I do recommend using a touch of blush or bronzer to avoid looking 'flat'.

I've swatched some of the light to medium shades for you to check out!  The top arm is swatched indoors (artificial light),  middle is in natural light and bottom is in direct sunlight. These are heavy, unblended swatches and the shades from left to right are : 3W1, 2W2, 2W1, 1W2, 1W1 and 1N2.

And here's a photo of me wearing 2W1 which is my perfect summer shade.  I know I don't look the happiest here but I'm not miserable,  I promise.  Just a little over heated ;)

Have you tried DW?  If so,  what do you think?  I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Happy Sample Sunday!

It's been a long, hot weekend here and I've
been attempting to organize my beauty products.  While doing so, I stumbled across a ton of samples.  From single use to deluxe I'm up to my ears in samples.  I've decided to work my way through them and have a weekly post dedicated to it.  Fun right?!

So without further ado,  I bring you the first installment of sample Sunday!  This week it's a shampoo and conditioner duo by North American Hemp Co.

I tested the Soak it up moisturizing duo and although the samples were fairly small (15 ml each) I was able to get a few uses out of them.

They're both scented nicely and a little went a long way.  After using the shampoo my hair felt hydrated enough that I could probably skip the conditioner.

The conditioner left my hair that much more hydrated and very manageable.  After drying my hair smelled great,  was shiny and not weighed down at all.

This is a line that I would definitely purchase in the future!

Have you tried any products from North American Hemp Co? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Friday, July 22, 2016

bellápierre Cosmetics Gel Lip Liner Review + Swatch

Hi lovelies! As promised, today's post is all about bellápierre's gel lip liner in shade number 3 cinnamon.  It has been hot and humid here in Toronto the last few days and I couldn't think of a better time to put this liner to the test!

According to bellápierre's website, this gel liner is waterproof, long wearing and hypoallergenic.  It is formulated with pure minerals,  natural waxes and antioxidants. It comes in 4 shades and is meant to be worn either alone or under mineral lipstick.

In the spirit of honesty,  as much as I love this shade, I have had nothing but issues with this lip pencil.  When I went to use it this morning it broke.  Not a little,  the whole tip.  So frustrating.  After sharpening it (not an easy task) I went to swatch it for you all.  Broke again.  More than a little irritated I go to sharpen it again.  Then I notice that the end of the pencil is incredibly frustrated I search the floor.  Can't find it.  I decide to look in the cap (which I put on the end of the pencil prior to sharpening) and find it stuck in there.  Surely enough,  it's lodged and won't come out.  Grr....

Anyways,  this time the pencil held a small point and I was able to swatch it.  It is a beautiful plum brown and is quite creamy yet waxy enough to hold its shape and apply evenly. It applies smoothly and doesn't transfer much.  It is definitely waterproof and even a little soap proof.  As far as wear goes,  it dries quickly and is somewhat hydrating. Once set it is smudge proof and long wearing.  It lasted most of the day through heat, humidity and lots of ice water.  I wore it for a solid 5 hours before it started to wear off,  which may have had something to do with the fact that I ate.

I see a lot of potential in this pencil and it's a shame that mine is broken.  I haven't used any other liners from bellápierre so I'm not sure if this is a common complaint or my pencil is just broken.

Have you tried any cosmetics from bellápierre?  I'd love to hear your thoughts below!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Another Winner! July's Topbox rocks

This post is a wee bit late and I apologize for that. It's been a very hectic summer with the kids and I've been spending lots of time outdoors - yay!

Anyways, today's post is about this month's Topbox and let me tell you it's a good one!

As a thank you for being patient during the pending Canada Post strike/lockout they added an extra item at no cost to us and I'm not complaining ;)

I decided to opt in for the monthly beauty surprise and I'm glad I did!  For those of you who are unfamiliar with the beauty surprise let me explain.  For an extra $10+tax you receive a full sized product added to your monthly subscription.  It could be anything from makeup to hair care and is anywhere from 10 - 90% of the retail cost.  As always the anticipation is priceless!

This month I received

  • Clinique's Pep Start eye cream
  • bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie lipstick in Get Ready
  • bellápierre cosmetics gel lip liner in the shade cinnamon (full size)
  • North American Hemp Co soak it up shampoo & conditioner
  • Glow For A Cause's facial nourishing cream (added beauty bonus, full size)
I paid $24.85 in total for this box and received $109 worth of products!  I'm going to review these products separately in the next few days so stay tuned!

Do you subscribe to topbox?  Would you like to?  Feel free to use my referral code by clicking here or message me to bypass the waitlist ;)