Holy Grail Hump Day

Today marks the beginnings of a new series I will be doing — Holy Grail Hump Day! Every Wednesday I will talk about a product that I absolutely adore and can trust 100% to do it’s job right.

Today’s Holy Grail goes to LUSH’s Celestial Face Moisturizer.
$24.95CA 45g
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ASSESS: Celestial is designed for those of us who have sensitive skin — redness, irritation, dryness — with the objective of replacing the issue with soothed, hydrated, soft skin. Ingredients include cocoa butter (to moisturize), vanilla water (to retain moisture), almond milk (to hydrate), and dove orchid (for softness). Use it day or night, a little bit goes a long way.

While their website claims to also give you glowing skin, I do have to disagree. However, that is the only thing I disagree about! All the other things this product sets out to do hits it out of the park for my face. I use this in the morning and night after washing, and immediately feel the difference in what was once dry and on the verge of cracking, to soft and silky.

With all natural ingredients, this smell reminds me of vanilla yogurt. Seriously, it looks and feels like I am putting yogurt on my face….but I love it.

I suffer from both awful eczema and psoriasis on my body, and while it really isn’t on my face my entire body is like a desert. I’ve tried more creams than I can count, both medical and not, and this product blows anything else I have tried away. I HIGHLY recommend this for anyone with sensitive skin.

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Choose-Day Tuesday (MAC vs. Lancome)

Today’s review will be a battle between two products that over the past couple of months I have put to the test.

The competitor in the left corner, fights off the good, the bad, the ugly! It’s…

MAC Cleanse Off Oil/Tranquil!
150ML/5.0 US FL OZ.
$30.00
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The challenger in the right corner has faced some of the most difficult obstacles, and made them completely disappear! It’s…
Lancome Bi-Facil Double-Action Makeup Remover!
125ML/4.2 FL OZ.
$35.00

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Let’s begin by saying I love both of these makeup removers, and reach for either one every single day. I highly recommend each of these, though both are expensive they truly do their job. That being said, only one can be the best! We are here to figure that out today.

MAC Cleanse Off Oil
I love that this makeup remover is specifically made for dry skin. It makes me feel better about the purchase, since it is not only removing makeup but leaving my face hydrated as well. While I do not notice that it is actually doing anything to particularly soothe the dryness like it claims, it does not irritate, and I can tell it is not stripping the skin from natural oils which is something sensitive skin like mine needs.

With only one pump needed, this bottle goes a long way. After rubbing it onto the skin, it feels extremely oily. Therefore, you absolutely need to wash it off, which it then becomes a lather, making you feel like you are really cleaning the skin (most definitely still recommend an actual fash wash though!).

I love the packaging, a pump makes this process a lot easier. While I have seen it to say it can actually soothe the skin, and seen reviewers say its gone as far as to help them with acne — that never happened for me. But if you are set out to remove waterproof makeup, heavy foundation, stubborn mascara — this stuff gets it done!!

Lancome Bi-Facil
So this makeup remover claims it is only for eyes, however I can easily use it for my entire face! The packaging isn’t as great, twist off the lid and carefully put some on a cotton pad. Getting this for my mother for her birthday, I was distraught to see she accidentally split a bunch of it. This stuff is not cheap.

And while this makeup remover on it’s own is a smidge pricier than the MAC Cleanse Off Oil, Lancome is known for having amazing gift with purchase or value packs available, and the three times I have picked up this baby, it was either a free gift (full size!!) or in a combo pack. I have never actually paid the full price for it.

If you can manage to not be clumsy like my dear mom, you only need a very tiny bit of this stuff, I’m talking a few droplets, to wipe off your ENTIRE face. It becomes a lifesaver when I can dip a q-tip in there and be able to fix a mistake around the eyes with just a light dab.

While it has no extra features like its challenger, this stuff removes absolutely everything with so little.

VERDICT
The MAC Cleanse Off Oil shot some great punches with the fact that it turns into a lather and helps with dryness, that it really gets makeup off and has a pump for easier dispensing, but its oiliness and price set it back a bit. There is absolutely no way to use less than a full pump of product, making it impossible to use it to fix minor mistakes. Even if it did, I would not use it for such a situation since it is SO oily, I’d have to wash it off right after putting it on my face.

I love Lancome’s product deals, I think it’s safe to say I never have to purchase this product at full price. One bottle has lasted me forever, and I use this stuff on the most stubborn of makeups!

While I highly recommend both removers, Lancome Bi-Facil is the best between the two!

Miffed Monday!

…okay I tried to come up with a clever title, not really working though eh?

Oh well. Today is a review that truly did leave me miffed! And the culprit is none other than Lancome’s Creme Radiance Cream-to-Foam Cleanser! I received this as a gift with purchase (sidenote: Lancome has the BEST gift with purchases I have ever seen for makeup!) as a 2oz tube. I was pretty excited since I at the time was incredibly happy with all the previous makeup products I had from the brand.

ADDRESS: Lancome Creme Radiance Cream-to-Foam Cleanser
$35.00 for 4.2 oz.
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ASSESS: Made for normal/combination skin, I was delighted at my luck! Since in the middle of the summer–which is when this was–is the only time my dry skin is gone and when I am prone to more blemishes, and would consider myself a combo skin type.

However, my excitement quickly went away. Immediately my eyebrows raised at the very fragranced smell of the cream, it honestly feels like you are putting perfume on your face. Which may be the cause behind breaking me out right away, as well as make my dryness come back to life. I did try to use it a couple of times to give it a real chance, but it actually gave me a slight burning sensation on my cheeks after a few uses, so within a week I knew I had to stop.

I think the label should say for oily skin only, because I think it does have potential to do well…it is just so very drying. So for someone who has any sensitivity at all, it just isn’t going to work.

April Favourites!

With May approaching, I figured it was time to take a look back on the things I loved most over this past month!
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Laura Mercier Highlighter
Got this not even a couple of weeks ago as a part of a 500 point perk Beauty Insider gift from Sephora. Worn it pretty much every day since. This highlighter has inspired me to go with a more natural look lately,  because with its warm golden shimmery glow, add a touch of bronzer, and thats all I need.  It’s pigmented, it glides on so smoothly, and it somehow in no way is sparkly/frosty. It will be perfect for the approaching summer. I am in love!
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Rainforest Sugarcane Candle
It’s funny, other than my boyfriend and I, any friends I’ve had over have not liked this candle! lol But I personally love it…in fact I no longer even have it cause it is already completely gone. It’s hard to describe this scent. Definitely a light tropical smell. It’s description is that it is a mix of vanilla orchid, fresh lime, and raw sugarcane. Definitely don’t smell the vanilla, but I suppose that may be what adds to the lightness of it. Have any of you smelled this candle? Do you like it?
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L’Oreal Paris Carbon Black Intense Liquid Eyeliner
Picked this up at the beginning of the month, have been using it since. It lives up to it’s name as an intense black, goes on smoothly and stays all day. The brush is super thin, making it easy to create a precise line or bold stroke.
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Lanza Shampoo/Conditioner
Omg I am in love!! If you take anything from this post, please take this brand. I have the most difficult frizzy hair, and this stuff works better than ANYTHING I have ever tried. I have such a hard time not touching it because it is so incredibly soft and healthy looking. Yes, it is on the expensive side of things ($20.00), I fortunately got it on sale for $14, but even at full price I think this shampoo and conditioner are completely worth it.
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Philosophy Purity Facial Cleanser
I discovered this facial cleanser this winter and it really does make a world of difference for dry skin. The reason for rediscovering my love for it this month was that I ran out, and since I wasn’t around a Sephora decided to try another brand. I guess my face had been so silky smooth for so long, that it was like seeing an unfriendly face after long periods of time — you just want to turn right back the other way! Picked it up again, using it daily, loving it big time all over again.
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Bite Beauty, Deconstructed Rose “Two” Lipgloss
Recently purchased Bite Beauty’s Deconstructed Rose Lipgloss set (which I will be doing a review on very soon!) and have to say I am loving one particular lipgloss from the set, “Two” (yes their names are just numbers, lame.) Haven’t had too many fancy places to go this month, and from day-to-day I like a natural look. “Two” provides a very natural sheer pink that provides a touch of colour and a nice shine. Going to the movies, grocery shopping or out to dinner, I have been loving this gloss.
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What is in my Travel Makeup Bag!

Since I am currently in the process of moving, I figured it was the perfect time to do a post about what is in my travel makeup bag!

Going back and forth between two cities often lately, it is easiest to only bring the essentials. However, with saying goodbye to the place I have lived for the past years comes goodbye dinners, parties, etc. So I still want to look nice!

First off, this is my makeup bag:
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My sister is AWESOME and gave me one of my favourite Christmas gifts, a Coach cosmetics bag. In purses/wallets I usually go for neutrals, but I am absolutely obsessed with how vibrant/deep this turquoise is. It easily stands out in my large duffel bags or suitcase, and has big enough pockets to store lots of products for a makeup junkie like me.
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(My bag is a bit dirty so I got this picture from online to show the inside!)

Moving on to what is actually in there (makeup only), my essentials are:

  • Primer
  • Tinted Moisturizer
  • Blush
  • Bronzer
  • Highlighter
  • Concealer
  • Eyebrow pencil
  • Eyeshadow Primer
  • Eyeshadow
  • Pencil Liner
  • Liquid Liner
  • Mascara

…Shit, that is a lot of essentials.

Primer & Tinted Moisturizor – laura mercier foundation primer & lightweight flawless coverage tinted moisturizor in Nude
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Primer for T-zone: Benefit – POREfessional
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Blush – Lancome Rose Romantique Powder Blush
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Bronzer – Benefit Hoola
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and currently to test Tarte – Mineral Powder Bronzer in Park Avenue Princess
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Highlighter – laura mercier
Matte Radiance Baked Powder Compact in Highlight
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Concealer – laura mercier Undercover Pot
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Eyebrow Pencil – Anastasia Beverly Hills Mini Brow Pencil in Medium Brown
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Eyeshadow Primer – Too Faced Eyeshadow Insurance
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Eyeshadow – Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette
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Pencil Liner – Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-on Double Ended Eye Pencil in Perversion and Demolition
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Liquid Eyeliner – L’Oreal Paris Carbon Black Lineur Intense
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Mascara – Two options
1. For daytime: Lancome – Definicils High Definition Mascara in Black
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For a night out: Too Faced – Better Than Sex Mascara
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This list also doesn’t include skincare products, makeup remover, and makeup tools (tweezers, brushes, etc.) — yep that Coach bag is well used! haha

When it comes to your travel makeup bag, it is important to pick the products you’ve come to know and love. The last thing you need is a blush that makes you look like a tomato or a liner that runs and bleeds all over your face when there are no other options around! If you are going to bring along a new product, make sure you have a backup of another brand you know can take it’s place if need be.

Even if it is just for a couple of days and you don’t really think you need something you normally wear, I recommend bringing it anyway if it’s possible. You never know what might happen on this trip, and could thank yourself later on for having your normal makeup routine around.

Review: Tarte Amazonian Clay Bronzer

Review time! So, you may have seen recently I did a pretty large haul at Sephora. After testing out the products extensively, I decided it was time to address & assess! The first up to trial would be none other than:

ADDRESS: TARTE Amazonian Clay Bronzer in Park Avenue Princess
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ASSESS: I was super excited to try this baby, since it gets nothing but rave reviews on Sephora and by many of the beauty gurus I watch. I was a tad worried when opening up the package, for it is a bit darker than I expected (and we all know from my Arbonne experience, too dark of a bronzer does not please me!). However, when applied with a light hand onto my medium/olive skin tone it looks just right!

I got this bronzer in the Tarte To-Go Kit that came along with a mini-self tanner for $12.00, and I have to say this is my proudest bargain of a purchase from my haul! The duo are like PB & Jelly, since this bronzer absolutely reminds me of the summer months, giving off that sun kissed glow with the golden shimmer. I think the light yellow pigment in the bronzer is complementing my skin my type wonderfully.

I feel like I am getting a good amount of both products to really test the product out before deciding to make the full purchase — which I do plan to eventually do. On that note though, it is only 0.11 of product, so it won’t last forever. I can just fit my bronzing brush in there, which is perfect for deciding if you like it or not, or for travelling.

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Highly recommend!

This is Where I Draw The Line: Eyeliner Review

Eyeliner is one of my absolute must-haves, if not THE product I need every single day. Eyeliner can waken the entire face, and either enhance your eye look dramatically, or just enough that your face doesn’t look washed out. At all times I am testing out new liners to see what works best for me. Today I am going to do a review on the ones I have been using lately!
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Eyeliners on Trial:

Pencil Eyeliners

  • Revlon ColorStay
  • Stila
  • Urban Decay 24/7 Glideon Pencil
  • Almay eyeliner/crayon

Liquid Eyeliners

  • Sephora Glitter Black
  • Revlon ColorStay Blackest Black
  • Eyeko London Black
  • Stila Intense Black
  • L’Oreal Paris Carbon Black Intense

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Please click on this image to view larger. From left to right: Revlon, Stila, Urban Decay 24/7 in Perversion, Urban Decay 24/7 in Demolition, Almay, Sephora Glitter Black, Revlon Liquid, Eyeko, Stila Liquid, L’Oreal


Revlon ColourStay Pencil Eyeliner: 5/10

Price: $9.99
Colour/Pigmentation: When first applied I feel the colour payoff is great, however smudges very easily. I won’t have even left the house before I can see it already looking a bit messy.
Staying power: I use this on my waterline and it is almost completely gone after the first couple of hours of wear.
Application: Liner glides on smoothly, and I enjoy that the product can be rolled up so there is no need for a sharpener.

Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Liner: 8/10
Price: $26.00
Colour/Pigmentation: Amazing pigmentation, I personally have it in Stingray which is the ideal deep black, perfect for a night out or defining the eyes during the day.
Staying power: the longevity of this product is pretty good, definitely noticed some fading after coming home from a long day, but still holding on. Which is impressive since my waterline eats everything up!
Application: I think eyeliner swatches are hard to judge…but the above picture further impressed me about this product. You can SEE how smoothly this product glides on.

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Double Ended Eye Pencil 8.5/10
Price: $19.00
Colour/Pigmentation: I have this product in Demolition (a dark brown) and Perversion (black) and enjoy this product during the day for the waterline and tightlining. I have to say I love tight lining with Demolition, it really does give the illusion of thicker lashes and does not look harsh.
Staying power: Demolition — awesome. Perversion — alright.
Application: Not quite Stila eyeliner standards, but this product also applies quite smoothly. I would actually say the formula is so soft, it can be a bit smudgy.

Almay 3.5/10
Price: $7.29
Colour Pigmentation: This colour is so dry so it takes quite a few tries to actually show up. The brown does not show up very well.
Staying power. What little does manage to come on during application, is completely gone within the hour.
Application: The packaging is simple and effective, a twist-up bottom makes application easy, and the pencil is very thin which is great for precision, but who cares about that when the product doesn’t even show up?

Sephora Glitter Black 9/10
Price: $15.00
Colour/Pigmentation: The colour payoff is what I love about this the most. I dark black with a tiny bit of shimmer, very unique and great to add that extra touch to your look on a night out!
Staying power: I have only worn this out at night, but it has lasted me easily up to 6 hours.
Application: The brush is very small, making creating that perfect winged line or a bold dramatic stroke. Goes on smooth, I love this!

Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eyeliner 9.8/10
Price: $10.99
Colour/Pigmentation: My all time favourite eyeliner. Colour payoff is amazing whether you do a thin precise line or a bold, dramatic stroke. No feathering, smudges or running.
Staying power: Stays until I take it off. The only reason for the 0.5 is if I happen to cry…things do get messy.  But stay happy, and stay pretty with your eyeliner!
Application: Great small brush for precision, I feel like a little bottle can last me quite a while. Takes a minute to dry but once it does, its so worth it!!

Eyeko 3/10
Price: $19.00
Colour/Pigmentation: This product is very dry so the colour payoff is not so great. The first couple of times I tried it I could get about halfway through an eyelid before it dried out. But you can see even from the swatch above, it is completely dried out!
Staying power: I have never successfully worn this so I couldn’t say! What a waste.
Application: I think the packaging is pretty great, the tip is super thin which could make a great winged liner, but because you feel like you have to keep re-lining forget it.

Stila Intense Black Liquid Liner 9.5/10
Price: $26.00
Colour/Pigmentation: This is an intense black, which is what I love in an eyeliner. The payoff is amazing!
Staying power: I can apply this in the morning when I wake up, and it hasn’t budged by the time I take it off before bed at night. Awesome stuff.
Application: This quick-dry liner is so thin that it can make an amazing thin precise line or a bold stroke.

L’Oreal Paris Carbon Black Intense 9.5/10
Price: $7.97
Colour/Pigmentation: This is my newest liner, and I am extremely impressed. The colour payoff wonderful, no fading or smudging whatsoever. It is a nice dark deep black.
Staying power: Stays all day long, a friend with oily lids even says she has no problem with it disappearing.
Application: The felt tip is so precise, I find it very easy to create the exact look I want. I do feel it works best if you dip back into the pot a couple of times through creating your look, but otherwise am so on board for this product.