Month: July 2014

July Favorites!

Let’s skip over the “where has the time gone? I can’t believe we are at the end of July …” and get right to the favorites shall we??

These are the products that have stood out to me this past month!


Tarte Amazonian Clay Powder Foundation: I absolutely adore this stuff. It takes a little bit longer to apply than a liquid, because I like to apply a few sheer layers in order to get the coverage that I want. But the finish is beautiful, it never looks cakey, and it lasts long enough to wear for a full day. I highly recommend this stuff!

Elizabeth Arden Beautiful Color Brow Pencil in Brownette: This is a new product from Elizabeth Arden, and I am hoping it is a permanent addition, and not just part of a collection. I prefer this to the Clinique Superfine Liner, and the spooly brush on the other end is amazing at blending out the pencil. I will probably keep this when it is empty, just to use that spooly. It lasts all day on my brows, and depending on how much pressure you use, you can really customize it to your brow color. I apply lightly near the inner parts of my eyes, and apply slightly more pressure when I get mid way through my brow.

Benefit Lolli Balm: This has been my go to this month. Just a hint of color, and the formula of these balms cannot be beat. They feel so smooth, and instantly make my lips look better. I need to get all of the other three balms for my collection.

Milani Brow Shaper Clear Wax: I love this product, I have a full review on it, and I can’t imagine not having it in my everyday routine now. It extends the wear of your brow product, and doesn’t make your brows feel hard, or sticky.

Versace Bright Crystal: I don’t know if this will ever not be my favorite fragrance. I am obsessed with this stuff, and I have reached for it a lot this month. Next time you are in a fragrance boutique, give this a smell. It will rock your world!

Rimmel Lasting Finish Nail Polish in 370 Wild Orchid: I love this formula of polish, and the color is perfect. I get so many compliments when I wear it, and it lasts me for almost a week with zero chipping. It’s been my favorite summer polish!

NARS skin balancing toner: I am in LOVE with this product, and I have mixed feelings about it. First of all, Sabah and I found it at Winners (Along with the cleanser and the moisturizer) and we both love everything from this line. I don’t usually have a toner in my routine (besides Bioderma) so I am not sure if my skin loves this particular one, or if it’s just happy to have a toner in general. This does have a bit of an alcoholy smell, and it is a balancing toner, but it hasn’t dried my skin out one bit. I’ll be upset when it’s gone, and I am interested to see if my skin will react as well to another toner.

Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs: I have been using this every time that I have shorts on this summer. It is amazing, and I don’t know why it took me so long to get on the band wagon. It makes my legs look flawless, but not fake. And I have had absolutely no problem with transfer. I use my St. Tropez mitt to blend everything out, and it always looks awesome!

What are your favorites this month!?



Product Fails: Dior Fluid Sticks!

I’m about to say something that hurts me more then it hurts you. I don’t like the new Dior Addict Fluid Sticks. This hurts my heart and my lips. The texture is absolutely bizarre, like a liquid plastic or like a gooey lipstick, just horrible texture. I will tolerate discomfort in a lip product if they have a good lasting power. The lasting power of this product is garbage and that is almost a positive because I hate the texture and the way it feels so much. I don’t find the colour opaque enough either, it seems to be weak and almost watery. When I bought the fluid stick I wasn’t particularly impressed with the colour range and found it really difficult to find one that I liked. They all seemed to have orange undertones which don’t look good on my skin tone. The only thing I really like about the fluid sticks is the packaging which is adorable. I suppose at some point Dior was going to let me down, I know that no line is perfect but it doesn’t make it any easier that Dior has failed me for the first time.


If you want something that will give you great color pay off, and something that feels like cushiony heaven, get yourself a Maybelline Color Elixir. Those are so much better, and a third of the price!


Products on my wishlist! High End Edition!

Everyone has a wish list. If you’re anything like Sabah, you actually have a mental and hard copy list ready at all times, in case you ever find yourself in a situation that you just need to buy something for yourself, or someone needs a quick gift idea. Not saying that I will be purchasing all four of these, but I can definitely say I will be looking into all of them aggressively, and making my choices soon!


1.) Marc Jacobs Kiss Pop Lip Color Stick ($35.00 CAD) These little sticks look so freakin’ cute, I can’t even stand it. The color range looks amazing, and I have been happy enough with everything Marc Jacobs, which makes me want this even more. Seriously, how cute are these lippies!?

2.) GLAM GLOW Power Mud Dual Cleanse Treatment ($76.00 CAD) I have also been very impressed with everything I have tried from GLAM GLOW. Combine that with my obsession for facial oils of all kinds, and this looks like a match made in heaven. I pick this up everytime I see it in stores, and I am impressed that I haven’t taken the plunge yet. I am still working through my Thirsty Mud GLAM GLOW mask, so maybe when that one is gone I will cave!

3.) Marc Jacobs Bronzer Brush No 12 ($94.00 CAD) I can almost hear Sabah shuddering when she reads this. I have been lusting over this brush for over a year. Every single time I see it I have to go visit it, and feel it, and make her feel it. It’s so beautiful, but $94.00 for a brush is taking me a little while to get used to. It’s not helping that all of the You Tube gurus that I watch are raving about it, and with my birthday coming up soon, I might just have to treat myself. For $94.00, it better apply my bronzer like a dream, clean itself, and unload the dishwasher for me.

4.) Smashbox Master Class Palette Color and Contour ($72.00 CAD) The next time I see this, it’s mine. I realize it’s limited edition, and I have to move on it fast. I might even buy two of these. One for me, and one for my freelance kit. It is so compact, and gives you so many colors, blush, highlight, contour, bronzer … It’s like a face in a box. No wasted space on cream liners, or lip products (I hate those so much in palettes!) And, it provides you with awesome plastic covers for either side, which will really protect them from breaking, and reduce any fallout between shades. This is something every makeup junkie should own. Everyday that passes, I get more and more upset that I don’t own it yet. (UPDATE: I actually purchased this before this blog post went up… I couldn’t get it off of my mind, and my retailer only had 12 left! I panicked and made an emergency trip to buy it!) Review coming soon!!

What things are on your wishlists?


Review: Milani Brow Shaping Clear Wax!

I get crazy excited when I find a product that I don’t currently have in my rotation. I’ll be honest, I have a ton of makeup. So when I find something that I’m not currently using, or better yet, have not used before, I get giddy. This was one of those items for me … You don’t know you need it until you use it, and then you wonder how you ever lived without it.

I have had my eyebrows waxed twice in just over 5 years. Not that they don’t need attention, or they don’t grow … I just like to take care of them myself. My skin is super sensitive, and I always end up with a swollen brow like this guy.


Needless to say, I pluck my eyebrows all the time, and I am constantly sweeping them up and cutting off the excess growth. They are usually pretty maintained, but for days that I just don’t have the time, this product is saving my brow life. Quick back story on my brows. They grow very long very fast, but they don’t curl, they just end up sticking straight off of my brow, and looking like a hot mess if they aren’t properly tamed. And since they can get so crazy, I am constantly trimming them. I struggle with keeping them trimmed, but also looking full. This clear brow wax has allowed me to let them grow in longer, and cover up some sparse areas I have in my brows. But also not look like a disaster when I leave the house. It definitely extends the wear of my brow color (which is usually Urban Decay shadow in Naked) and it doesn’t make the eyeshadow look darker like I thought it would. (You know when you put a powder over a creamy or waxy product and it looks much more intense?) This stuff retails for $4.99 CAD, and it was worth every penny. I have already sharpened mine a few times, and I will be purchasing a back up next time I see Milani somewhere. I am also considering throwing one of these in my freelance kit. This is a total gem for me, and it has become a staple in my everyday makeup routine.

Anyone who uses the Anastasia brow wax pencil, needs to switch to this. Seriously, the price cannot be beat, and the quality is amazing!


Review: Peter Thomas Roth Ripe and Ready to Refresh Kit!

I’m considering buying this kit again just in case they’re gone when I run out. I love all three masks. Confession, I’m a mask junkie. I really go a little nuts with masks and have to use a lot of self-restraint to not use them daily. So this kit comes with three really good sized jars of masks.


Here are the details on how to use these gems:

-Apply a generous coat on clean skin.
-Allow mask to remain on for 10 minutes.
-Rinse with cool water.
-For an intensive treatment, refrigerate and apply as a mask or apply a thin layer as the last layer of skincare and leave on overnight.
-Use two to three times a week or daily for intensive repair.

Cucumber Gel Mask: This guy is great, super for soothing any redness, and any blemishes seem to be soothed really well. It has a nice gentle smell and it is cooling to the skin. I don’t even store it in the fridge, but they say it really ups the ante with the cooling feel. I don’t really struggle with a ton of redness or skin irritation so this isn’t really the go to mask of the three for me. I do really like it but I’m more drawn to the other two.

Rose Stem Cell Bio-Repair Gel Mask: This one is my favorite, I love this mask. Admittedly I can’t speak to any actual anti-aging benefits yet but I’m noticing a lot of skin benefits. This is a gel mask like the cucumber one. It does make my skin a bit red when I apply it, but not in an allergic reaction way. I apply both the Rose Stem Cell and the Cucumber as overnight treatment masks. I am noticing a considerable difference in my skin texture. I have repeatedly demanded Sara really examine my face and tell me I’m not imagining the difference. My skin is smoother, healthier and my makeup applies better. I don’t really know what else I could ask from a mask. I really fight myself from applying it daily.

Pumpkin Enzyme Mask: Oh how I’m going to love this in the fall. It has the best smell, pumpkin obviously. The texture of this is like a manual exfoliator but in a gel as opposed to a cream. You apply this mask and rub it in with damp fingers then let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing. You feel immediate results with this mask. I have had no dry patches since I started using this mask.

If you’re someone who enjoys masks or enjoys seeing improvement in their skin then this is the kit for you. I really think there is something here for everyone and there isn’t anyone who wouldn’t see benefits from this product. Oh Peter Thomas Roth, you do such wonderful things for my skin.


How to properly clean your makeup brushes!

This has been a post that has been requested many times since I started blogging. Every one always asks me what I do to keep my brushes clean. Working in cosmetics, you hear the craziest stories. Seriously, we are up there with hairdressers and bartenders. Sometimes you hear things that just make your head spin. The clients who use their brushes for about a month, and then buy a whole new set and throw out the old ones … The clients who have never washed their brushes, even though they have had them for years, and my personal favorite, the client who puts their makeup brushes in the dishwasher. Yup, you heard me right. The dishwasher. Next to her beef stew and spinach salad plates. Barf. Let’s go through the steps I take to ensure that my brushes stay clean, and last forever!

1.) Have a system in place for your clean and dirty brushes: This is an important step. If you keep all of your brushes in the same jar, or holder, you are inevitably going to get all of your brushes filled with bacteria. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t used your eyeshadow brush, if you throw a dirty blush brush beside it, your bacteria will travel. Not to mention some of your color pigment.

2.) Keep Kleenex (Hand Towels Preferably) and a brush cleaner spray on hand, and spray your brushes down every time you use them: This seems like a lot of work to some people, but it is as easy as spraying the brush and wiping it on a tissue. Mind you, it is not going to rid your brush of all bacteria, but it will disinfect the top surface, and keep your brushes fresh enough until it’s time to shampoo them.

3.) Try to deep clean your brushes once every 2 weeks: Now, I say this assuming you are a regular person, wearing everyday makeup. If you are rocking the black lipstick and winged liner, or you shadow as a drag queen, you will obviously have to clean your brushes more. I try to shampoo mine once a week, and focus really on my face brushes, as 99% of the time I use my fingers for my eyeshadow. There are lots of things you can use to clean your brushes. Baby Shampoo is a popular choice, or even Dawn dish soap (only the blue one, never the green one!) Dawn is amazing to use for gel eyeliners, and long lasting foundations, because it really breaks down the oils and gets the brush squeaky clean. I am also obsessed with my Beauty Blender Solid cleanser. That stuff cleans makeup sponges like no other.

4.) Invest in a brush cleaning glove: Hear me loud and clear when I say, do not purchase the Sigma Cleansing Glove. It is around $50.00 and you can get the exact same effect from a rubber glove that you bought at the dollar store. Or, a silicone oven mitt. This is a step that I deemed unnecessary, until I used one. It protects your hands from drying out, and it gives some texture, which is perfect for rubbing your brush on, as it really lathers up and cleans the brush better than just your hand.

Now the actual process goes something like this. Put your rubber glove on the hand that you don’t write with. Get all of your dirty brushes ready, and have an area with a clean towel laid down, so you have somewhere to put them. Put a small drop of whatever cleanser you are using in the palm of your gloved hand, and swirl your brush around in it. Turn the tap on and get some water on it, which will make it really lather up. It is important to always keep the brush pointing down, in order to avoid water getting into the feral, and loosening the glue that holds the bristles in. (Don’t you guys hate it when your brushes shed!) Keep swirling and rinsing the brush until the water runs clear, and there are no longer suds coming out of it. Still keeping the brush pointed down, squeeze out the excess water, to reshape your brush, and lay it flat on the clean towel. If possible, try to put the brushes in a position where they are slightly pointing down. Don’t point the brushes up, or put them in a cup to dry, because again, you don’t want to loosen up the glue. Don’t rush through it, especially with bigger brushes. If you haven’t done it in awhile, you will be shocked to see what comes out of them.

They do sell brush shapers, which I sometimes like to use, especially if I am travelling. You simply slip the brush guard up onto the bristles, and it will reshape the brush for you, and also ensure your bristles stay protected.


The only thing I haven’t invested in that I still think about, is a brush tree. Those things look amazing. But none the less, laying the brushes on a flat towel gets the job done just as well.

I hope that answers any questions that you guys had about brush cleaning! Do you guys do anything different? If so, let me know!


Sabah’s Four High End Regrets!

I buy a ton of makeup. I’m actually a bit embarrassed about how much money I spend on this pretty little addiction of mine. I’m someone who really researches products before making a purchase, and typically don’t go in blind so I don’t usually regret my purchases but sometimes products just disagree with me. Here are some of my high end regrets.

NARS Multiple in Copacabana: I’m pretty pale so I usually gravitate to light colour highlighters. I had heard such great things about this multiple so I dove right in especially after I saw it on Sara. The problem with this product for me was it seemed to disappear as I applied it, but what was left on my skin was a patchy, glittery mess.

Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick: Again I am on the hunt for the perfect highlighter. So I had to get the infamous shimmer brick from our favorite glasses wearing makeup guru. Way too glittery for me. I like a creamy shimmer instead of a glitter. This is decent to be used for shadows but as a highlighter I’m not into it. The colour was too bronze-y for me but that can be credited to me picking the bronze one. Considering the price of this product I was super disappointed.

Nest Midnight Fleur Rollerball: So happy that I didn’t get the full size that I wanted when I originally smelled this product. I got the rollerball because the scent was so different. I wasn’t wrong, the smell is different, in that it is somewhat nauseating. It has like a smoky heavy smell. I hate it. At first I thought that maybe I was getting sick and that my sense of smell was wonky. Nope this fragrance actually makes me nauseous.

Beauty Blender: I may be the only owner of a beauty blender who isn’t obsessed with this little pink egg. I don’t get it. I’ve done everything to make this guy work for me, and it does, but not much better than any other sponge. I bought a lot of knock off sponges before jumping in and buying the beauty blender. I wasn’t ready to spend that kinda money on a sponge when I could be buying a blush or something else wonderful and pink. It is slightly better than the $4 alternatives, but just barely.


Review: Smashbox Cherry Smoke Photo Op Eye Shadow Palette!

I really can’t be held accountable. It was so pretty and wearable. Smashbox shadow palettes are as close to a sure thing as you’re going to get in cosmetics. I bought it blindly because they had no testers (yet) and I have no self-restraint. Anyway the moral of the story is this is a beautiful palette. The palette is called Cherry Smoke and comes in a compact that is slightly larger than the Naked Basics. It has a great little magnet that automatically snaps shut when you close the palette. This will come in handy during travel, and hopefully demolish the chances of it shattering. It includes eight shades with a surprising favorite in Unadorned, the bottom left shade. So here’s the quick and dirty. Keep reading for pictures and swatches.

• Pigmented Shades
• Easy to blend formula that play well with each other
• Versatile for all eye colours
• It’s a neutral palette that is different enough to justify the purchase.
• It’s a comfortable size to hold while doing your eye makeup, and the mirror is the perfect size.

• Fallout is pretty significant. Not a huge deal if you start with your eyes during your routine.
• It is lacking a colour appropriate for the brow.
• No matte transition shade.
• Dark Cocoa and Ebony are so similar when swatched that I’d prefer one be replaced with either a brow or transition shade.

Application went very smoothly, the fallout wasn’t too much to handle, and I was happy with the pigment from the shadows, without using a primer. As always I was satisfied with the results, and Smashbox again delivers with the eyeshadows. Also included in this small collection were two lipsticks, Bing and Cherry Copper. They weren’t shades for me, but I am super happy I bought this palette. The packaging is a great addition to the collection, and it packs enough of a twist to make me feel justified in having another neutral palette. I can’t wait to keep trying different looks, and perfect this baby by the time the leaves start to turn.


Almira’s Clarisonic Journey …

Sara shared her story and now I’m sharing mine. We have different concerns and different skin types… she’s dry, I’m oily and this device has worked well for both of us. 2 years ago, I had 4 of my wisdom teeth removed, and that was not fun…quite painful actually if it weren’t for the drugs! I was in and out of sleep for 2 days and I had ice packs on both sides of my face. I wrapped them in cloth so I didn’t have the icepack directly on my skin. Unfortunately because I was sleeping, and on a lot of medication, the cloth on the right side of my face fell off and I had the freezing cold ice pack directly on my skin for hours. When I woke up, I literally had to peel the ice pack off and took some skin with it. According to my doctor, any longer would have resulted in severe frost bite. It resulted to this black scar mark on the right side of my face (before and after pictures below).


Pictured above is after 2-3 months of use with my Clarisonic. Below is the initial scarring.


Fast-forward to when I caved and bought the Clarisonic. What appealed to me the most about it is the exfoliation that the vibrations give you, always a sucker for that exfoliation and radiance. I was of course skeptical but oh boy was I happy that I bought it. After maybe just 2-3 months of using it (everyday, once a day), I saw a noticeable difference with my big black scar that was caused by the ice pack. It is now so faded that just sheer foundation can cover it right up. I can’t give all the credit to my Clarisonic because I was still exfoliating regularly and using my Vital Light Serum and Night Cream from Clarins. It’s the combination of everything but I can confidently say that the Clarisonic has helped so much with this scar that I wouldn’t get the same effects by just skin care alone. I have now changed my brush head to the oily/acne-prone skin one and I think that after the purging stage my skin has begun to dial down after its summer pimple flare-up stage. I would recommend this device for everyone who loves the simple clean feeling and who wants to give his/her skin the best opportunity to be in it’s best condition, definitely a buy.

Have you guys caved and bought the Clarisonic?


Review: Physicians Formula Youthful Wear Spotless Foundation!


Hi everyone, how’s it going? I am typing this on my cell phone, trying to get some breakfast on the table, and attempting to get some moisturizer on before dashing out the door for some appointments before work.

I wanted to let you guys know about a new foundation that I have been trying out. Physicians Formula Youthful Wear Spotless Foundation. I picked this up last week, and I have been using it since. Here are my thoughts:

First thing first, I never buy into anti aging claims when it comes to foundations. Sure, they can make you look younger, but reducing wrinkles or banishing dark spots is not something I would ever expect from a makeup item. So going into it not expecting it to be a skincare item, this is my story with it!

The texture of this “serum foundation” is beautiful. It’s very fluid, and feels like nothing on my skin. The color (light) matches me pretty well, although when I am self tanned, I do need a boost with some bronzer. I use a full dropper amount, and it gives me the coverage that I am happy with. I do require some extra concealer under the eye, but that’s usually always the case so I’m fine with it. This foundation wears very well on my dry skin throughout the day, and it doesn’t cling to my dry patches. It comes with it’s own brush, which I actually thought might have worked out, unfortunately, it feels like a brush full of needles on your face. Do you guys know that feeling when brushes actually poke you so hard you think they pierced the skin? I’ve tried using it different ways, and I always go back to my hands with this foundation. It is so light, and feels incredibly absent on the skin. I have so many other foundations to try out, but this one was really nice for me, and also didn’t break me out. It retails for $18.99 CAD, and when I bought it, Physicians Formula had a sale on almost everything, but this wasn’t included. Keep an eye out for a bargain, and do yourself a favor, throw the brush out immediately, or maybe keep it to dust your fragrance collection!

Physicians Formula seems like a solid brand. What have you guys tried from the line?