Thursday, September 27, 2012

Wedding makeup with Make Up For Ever's Aqua Rouge in #9!

As some of you may know, my little sister is getting married this October. When I heard of Make Up For Ever's new Aqua Rouge makeup line, the first thing I thought of was "oooh, wedding lipstick!". Since it's a long wearing, waterproof, budge proof lipstick, it made sense to me to try it out for a wedding look! Make Up For Ever offered for me to pick out a color for my sister, and while they thought I would like a soft pink, which is standard for wedding makeup, I knew my sister would want a dark reddish color. She's quite vampy with her lips! I settled on color #9, a dark, rusty red.

The lipstick has a liquid lipstick end, and a gloss end. We used the liquid lipstick only as we thought the gloss wouldn't appropriate for a wedding. Plus, the lipstick is no longer transfer-proof if you use the gloss, which would be a disastrous thing on your new husband. The lipstick applies beautifully, and is truly waterproof, budge-proof and long lasting. My sister said that she only saw a bit of fading on the inside of her lips after eating. It did not cause any of the pesky flaking these types of lipsticks usually create.

Makeup breakdown:
Foundation: Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet + mixed with Bourgeois Healthy Mix Serum in 52 Vanille
Eyebrows: My sister's Gosh eyebrow pencil + MAC Omega
Eyes: Make Up For Ever Eye Prime, Dior Earth Tone Quint - we used the beige/taupe shade all over the lid, then we used the Dior Aurora Palette's dark brown in the crease, Maybelline Master Precise eyeliner pencil in black, Pixi nude eyeliner in the waterline, L'Oreal Million Lashes mascara, Ardell 308 lashes.
Cheeks: NARS Laguna Bronzer, Tarte Exposed blush, MAC Lightscapade as highlighter.
Lips: Make Up For Ever Aqua Rouge in #9*

I think this makeup look totally works for a wedding! I'm not sure that my sister will necessarily go for a look like this, but it's fun to get an idea before the big day!

What would your wedding make up look like? Or what did it look like? I don't know what I'd like but I'm not sure I'd go for red lips - my boy would probably make another Joker reference.

Hope your week has been going well! My sister's bachelorette is this weekend and preparations are under way!

* I have received this products for consideration but my opinions are always my own. I am not being compensated for this review and I always strive to review products with honesty.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

When in doubt about a product... try it anyway! My venture into the YSL Glossy Stain!

When I first heard about the YSL Glossy Stains, I wasn't immediately impressed. I'm not really a fan of stains as they tend to dry out my lips, and they almost never look even on me. Sure they look cool when swatched, and sure people were raving about the formula but I just didn't buy it. Until now that is.

After reading ChelseaWears' review, I decided enough is enough, I just had to find out for myself if it's good or not. I chose the shade #5 in Rouge Vintage.

I'm on the fence about the packaging. On one hand, it's compact and stylish, but on the other, it looks like a nail polish bottle (hence the "Vernis" in the title which is French for "polish"). Either way, it doesn't affect the product, and the heart/doe-foot applicator is excellent and makes application super easy.

Here it is with two coats.

And full face, with one thick coat:

The thing I like the most about this product is how easily it applies. Yes, it's a stain but it covers your lips evenly without having to try too hard. I also love the glossy finish of it. It feels very much like the love baby of a stain, lipstick and gloss. It does have a scent to it, but it doesn't bother me at all. I quite like it actually. Plus, it is really easy to layer. Example below:

Left to right: 1 coat of Rouge Vintage, 2 coat of Rouge Vintage, 3 coats of Rouge Vintage. Each coat was applied after a 30 second wait.

So I guess I do recommend this product. If you can afford it. They are not cheap. But if you're into cosmetics, I can guarantee you that you haven't seen a product quite like this before.

Thank you for reading and see you soon! 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Dior Vernis in Rouge Altesse, or Red Royalty - review and swatches

It's funny. I really didn't intend to buy this polish. The sales person was pushy and was trying to get me out of buying a Butter London polish, and kept saying Dior was much better. I caved in and she sort of proved herself right!

Dior's Vernis in Rouge Altesse, or Red Royalty in English, is a true almost cherry red. It's kind of cherry looking in my pictures but trust me, it's not cherry looking in most lights. It's a bright, true red. It has a silver shimmer running through it which you can see in the bottle if you look very closely. It's not apparent on the nail which was a tad disappointing.

The formula of this polish is excellent. It's incredibly pigmented but also quite fluid. However, it does not pool around the cuticles, and provides opaque coverage in one coat. It did stain my nails though. And the brush - I love it! It's stiff but wide - it's excellent for the three strokes application technique. It also wore quite well, lasting a good 4 days before chips.

I'm not sure I'd purchase any other of Dior's polishes since the price point ($24) is so high, but I must admit my first experience has impressed me. Perhaps the limited edition Vernis of the future will woo me? Yeah, probably.

Hope you've all had a great weekend. Mine was quite good and relaxing. I worked a bit on the layout of the blog. And since I now have an iPhone (5!!!), I have an Instagram account as well! Also, the boy and I completed the Rocky series - my favorites have been Rocky I, III and Rocky Balboa. I now have the theme song stuck in my head permanently. And forever. On repeat. Oh dear.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

After three years with Too Faced Shadow Insurance, I'm breaking up for Make Up For Ever Eye Prime

It's kind of sad when you've used a product for what seems like forever, are quite content with it, and then you wander off to try something different and completely fall in love with the new product. Well, this is what happened with my trusty Too Faced Shadow Insurance. I broke up with it. I feel bad letting it go but it's for a good reason.

I was starting to get a bit disenchanted with the Too Faced Shadow Insurance - it wasn't making my shadow last all day anymore and it kept separating. I'm not sure if it's because it just got a bit old (that tube has lasted me forever!) but I thought it might be time to wander around and shop for another eye primer.

Since I now have (relative, 1+ hour drive) access to Make Up For Ever and just read a very favorable review of their Eye Prime on Temptalia, I thought I'd give it a shot!

Heavily applied on my hand. You need maybe a third of this for one eyelid.

I love this stuff. It blends in seamlessly and its doe foot applicator dispenses the perfect amount for my two lids. It doesn't have a scent and it is undetectable after blended in. I guess I do wonder if it'll dry out after a while since it's in a tube, but for now, I'm very happy with it.

MAC's Shale over Eye Prime left, Shale on its own on the right.

I tested it under MAC's Shale eyeshadow and surprisingly, I noticed the Eye Prime slightly altered the color. Shale looks lighter and more shimmery with the Eye Prime. I haven't noticed a difference in color using shadows on my lids, so I'm not sure it's too detectable, but it's worth knowing.

This product works wonders for my oily lids. Not only does the shadow stay in place all day, it does not crease, and does not fade either. That's honestly a first for me. It makes me excited to put on shadow in the mornings!

Hope this was helpful for you guys. If you have oily lids and are looking for a good primer, I highly suggest the Make Up For Ever Eye Prime. I think this will be a staple in my collection for a good long time.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

L'Oreal Infallible Eye Shadow in Bronzed Taupe and Amber Rush

I'm already a massive fan of L'Oreal Infallible shadows. When I saw these babies on sale at my local Lawtons, I knew they'd be welcome in my collection. I had been looking unsuccessfully for the lovely Bronzed Taupe, thinking it was unavailable in Canada, but there it was as well. And I must say, it is quickly becoming one of my favorite shadows in my collection!

Bronzed Taupe to the left and Amber Rush to the right.

Bronzed Taupe is a errrr, just that, a bronzed taupe! It is cool in tone and remind me of a better, more intense Satin Taupe. I absolutely love wearing it on its own, blended out into the crease, or under a black based, for a smokier look.

Here's a comparison of Bronzed Taupe (left) and Satin Taupe (right). As you can see, Satin Taupe is plummier than Bronzed Taupe, and less shimmery.

I wanted to see if I had anything like Amber Rush in my collection (middle) and the closest matches are MAC's Honesty (left) and Sleek Gift Basket (right). Again, Amber Rush is more shimmery and lighter than both shades.

Here's a look I've done with Bronzed Taupe

I cannot recommend these eye shadows enough. They are incredibly long lasting, gorgeous, and they are cheap! I highly suggest Bronzed Taupe as it is absolutely stunning.

I hope you all had a good weekend!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

China Glaze Nail Appliqué in Shake Your Tail Feathers

When I was offered to review China Glaze's new Real Nail Polish Appliqués* by Nail Polish Canada, my trusty polish supplier, I jumped at the chance. What's not to love? No dry time, quickly done manicure, and funky designs. Did I mention no dry time?

Anyway, I chose the Shake Your Tail Feathers design since I loved the color and swirls.

Applying these is pretty simple once you get the hang of it. You simply peel off the sticker off the back of the "app" and place it on your nail, where your cuticle is, making sure the base is sticking and not to creating any ridges in the process. Then, you gently pull the "app" over the edge of the nail, gently filing off any excess. And voila!

Having never tried these before, I messed up a few nails. Honestly, it's not very obvious that the "app" wasn't applied properly because of the pattern in the design - it kindly hides any mistakes. However, since my nails are so wide AND curved, the "app" was not wide enough to cover my whole nail, specifically, the middle finger and ring finger. The advantage of this however is that people who naturally have very small nails, and don't really get to enjoy the fun of nail art because of their small nails, can definitely revel in these. I've seen them applied on small nails and it looked great! And a lot of them have great patterns that would look amazing on short nails!

I think I did make a mistake with these - I used Seche Vite as a top coat and I think it caused the edges to curl. Seche Vite is meant to help your polish dry and since this polish is already dry, I think it messed with it a little. So, I'd suggest NOT using Seche Vite as a top coat over it. However, I wore them for a few days anyway and had no problem with them falling off - the edges were a bit curled though.

Overall, I'd only suggest these if you don't have a wide nail plate like mine and if you like pattern or design on your nails. However, the fact that there is no dry time is awesome, and the application is very simple and easy! So go for it if this sounds like something you'd like, but do NOT use Seche Vite! Ha ha ha! The China Glaze Nail Appliqué are available on Nail Polish Canada.

* I have received these products for consideration but my opinions are always my own. I am not being compensated for this review and I always strive to review products with honesty.

Friday, September 14, 2012

This is what happens when you've had a bad week...

I've been doing some retail therapy. And I'm not going to lie, it totally made me feel better! :) There has been some health problems in my family lately and it has been quite difficult and tiring. Hence the slow posting on the blog. But I will be back to regular postings soon!

Sephora is my friend.

Also nail wheels are fun!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I've been tagged! Liebster Award

I've been tagged by the lovely Emily from Emily Ann Beauty and Claire from Aucuparia Brumalis. Make sure you subscribe to Claire as she has just changed host to Wordpress! Thanks you two! Here are my answers to your questions. :)

The rules
1) Post 11 facts about yourself
2) Answer the questions the tagger has set for you and create 11 questions for people you’ve nominated
3) Choose 11 people to give this award to (with fewer than 200 followers) and link them in your post
4) Go to their page and tell them
5) Remember, no tag backs

11 facts about me

1) I absolutely love coffee, but I don't love coffee flavored things
2) I'm French, as in I grew up speaking French in Canada
3) I absolutely love film, and usually watch a movie a week, if not more
4) That being said, I've been known to do some acting in local movies
5) I have a English major and a theatre minor
6) I'm a decent enough cook
7) I love animals of all shapes and sizes
8) I'm quite forgetful but not absent-minded
9) I hate bananas but love banana bread
10) I love peace and quiet, but I don't mind a party once in a while
11) I despise egos

Questions from Claire!
1) Why did you start blogging?
I started blogging a year and a half ago because I needed a "project" in my life. I loved nail polish at the time and kept checking on blog swatches in order to make my nail polish decisions. Then I thought, why can't I do it? So I did! And I kind of kept with it I suppose!

2) What is your favorite lipstick colour?
That's a tough one. If we go with the one I've worn most, and the one I've had longest, I'd say Estee Lauder Crystal Rose. I've worn this baby so much. It's an easy shade to wear and it goes with ANY eye makeup. So yeah, it's probably my favorite - I'm sure others will take the top spot though!

3) Do you follow trends? Why, why not?
In makeup? Kind of. If it's fall, I'll definitely start wearing more rich colors... but at the same time, I won't follow trend religiously. I pretty much do what I want with makeup. In clothing, I think I do more. If an item is in style, and affordable, I'll sometimes go for it. But I'm quite fluid in my style, I'll love something new from Asos as much as a vintage dress I found at a second hand clothing store. I usually just do it my way.

4) When did you start wearing makeup?
I'd say when I was about 12 or 13, I started wearing Bonne Bell cosmetics, including lip balms and white/silver eyeliners. Oh and when I was about 12, I wore a bright green eyeshadow my mom had to a school dance. It was up to my eyebrow and NOT pretty.

5) What does makeup/fashion mean to you?
 For me, makeup means self-confidence and expression. I love the fact that you can wear a bright lip, and feel like a totally different person. Self-expression is very important to me and I feel like makeup is one of the way I get to achieve this. I think fashion also works the same way. For me, it's definitely a way to express myself. I tend not to care too much about what people think of what I wear, so it's definitely an outlet for me.

6) Who/what is inspiring you (makeup, fashion, life)? Why?
Umm, that's hard to say. I just kind of gather inspiration - it's not really coming from one person in particular really. I read a lot of blogs though, so I gather a lot of inspiration from that. 

7) Who is your favorite fashion designer and why?
Argh, I've been so out of the fashion world lately, but I've always loved Marc Jacobs and Chloe. Oh and Theory. I'm into classics.

8) What is your passion (writing, singing, painting, etc.)?
Acting. Hands down, my favorite thing to be doing. If I could make a living off this, I would.

9) Is there a beauty product everyone seems to dislike but you love it?
I don't know! I don't think so. The blogosphere is my go to for product recommendations, so usually, someone else likes it! 

10) What is your go to hair product? Why?
Moroccan Oil! And my Ginger Clarifying Shampoo from The Body Shop. Damn my hair feels clean after using that!

11) What is your favorite place to shop and why?
Gap, J Crew (although I rarely buy there, I love to browse), Asos,  Sephora. I love to shop at those places because they always have stuff I like! I'm bound to find something there!

Emily's Questions 

1) What blog post of yours are you most proud of?
Probably my Wet & Wild Comfort Palette post since it took FOREVER to swatch and write. I also like my Lancome Rouge in Love posts (1, 2 and 3) since I felt good writing about a product that was truly excellent.

2) Twitter or Facebook? 
I don't use Twitter too often, or Facebook for that matter, but I guess I'll go with Facebook since it keeps me in touch with my friends who have moved away.

3) How did you think up your blog name? 
I was in a tough spot when I started my blog and wanted something frivolous where I could talk about the small joys of life. At that time, my small joys were nail polish and makeup. And therefore, the blog became, thesmalllittlethingsinlife, since thesmallthingsinlife was already taken. In retrospect, it would've been good to have something about makeup in the title, but I wasn't sure what the blog would become either. Oh well. I like it anyway! :) 

4) What's your dream job? 
I'd love to do acting for film. If I could just hang out with Terrence Malick, and shoot a few movies, I could seriously die happy. 
5) What's your favorite food? 
I love a good burger. So probably a cheeseburger. YUM! Or Pad Thai! 

6) What is one beauty item you couldn't go a day without using? 
Probably mascara or lip balm. However, last Sunday I went on about my day without both. So it really depends on how lazy I am. 

7) What's your favorite magazine? 
I used to luuuurve InStyle and Lucky magazine but since I've been following a bazillion blogs, my craving for magazines has died down. 

8) Recommend me a good winter lipstick? (all I have is summer colours atm!) 
I'd say go for a good moisturizing lipstick of an autumn shade such as the YSL Vernis à Levres (shades 1 and 4). The Lancome Rouge in Love have a great color selection, especially for fall, and are very moisturizing! For a cheaper option, Revlon's new Kissable Balm Stains have excellent mauve/cherry colors for fall as well! 

9) On average, how long do you spend blogging a week? 
Including photographing, researching, editing and writing, I'd say 5 hours a week? I don't edit my photos much, if at all sometimes. Some weeks take a lot more of my time though, especially if I'm doing a makeup look, or lip swatches. It all depends! 

10) What other hobbies, aside from blogging, do you have?  
I take boxing classes! I like to paint, read The New Yorker online, cook and to watch movies. 

11) Do you have a saying or phrase that you try to live your life by?
One day at a time!

My Questions for you!

1) If you could chose only 1 eyeshadow to complete a look, which one would it be?
2) What was your first lip balm?
3) You have 7 minutes to get ready - what do you reach for?
4) What is your favorite foundation?
5) What's the one blush you own that goes with everything?
6) What nail polish will be your go-to for fall?
7) What is your favorite movie?
8) Have you ever had an overnight hospital stay? If so, why?
9) Do you have pets?
10) You have $100 at Sephora. What do you immediately put in your cart?
11) What is your favorite palette?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

The satisfaction of a most wanted acquired: Estee Lauder's Crystal Baby is mine! (+ a dupe?!)

I was seriously beaming when I purchased Estee Lauder's Crystal Baby finally. Beaming, walking through the mall. I should probably be embarrassed about this fact. But I'm not.

Crystal Baby has been on my most wanted list for a really long time. My local Estee Lauder counter didn't carry it, and any other counters I visited never had the tester, so I just assumed they never carried it. When I arrived at The Bay in Toronto, they ALSO didn't have the tester, but I asked anyway, just in case they had it. And they did. Apparently the tester was stolen. Go figure. So anyway, I was a happy camper when I finally got my hands on this baby!

I've always been a fan of Estee Lauder packaging - a base that shows the color of the lipstick and a sturdy gold case. Love.

Here is the lipstick swatched on my hand.

And on my lips.

The texture of this lipstick is amazing. Soft but not slippery and lightweight but still pigmented. I think it's the best type of color for an every day brown smokey eye (which I wear often). However, this lip color is so neutral, it basically works with anything, even brighter looks.

Here are some comparison pictures:
From left to right: Marcelle Rouge Xpression in Sincerity, MAC Hue, MAC Creme Cup, Estee Lauder Crystal Baby, Estee Lauder Crystal Rose.

Notice any similarities?
Marcelle in Sincerity left, Estee Lauder Crystal Baby on the right.

Marcelle's Xpression Rouge Creme in Sincerity is almost the same as Estee Lauder's Crystal Baby. They also have the same texture and moisturizing feel. I'd say Sincerity is a tiny little smidge pinker than Crystal Baby. But that's unnoticeable on the lips. If you don't want to shell out for an expensive lipstick, Marcelle is a great alternative. And at a $20 + price difference, I'd suggest going with the Marcelle option.

Overall, I'm very happy with my purchase. Estee Lauder rarely disappoints me in its products, and this is no exception. Now if I could only get my hands on the Violet Underground palette, I'll be happy.

Do you have a go-to, foolproof lipstick?

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Nail of the day: Victoria by Nails Inc!

Let me present to you one of my favorite polish EVER. Pretty much. Well, it's hard to decide in reality, but this one is very high on the list.

Nails Inc. Victoria is a vampy chocolate red. I just love the color. It's vampy without being too dark, and it's classy without being too red. I love the look of it on shorter nails. I can see myself re-wearing this shade over and over. I believe I only have one other similar shade and it is out on loan to my friend. So, Victoria, I believe we are going to be friends.

I must say, Nails Inc. keeps impressing me. I don't know if it's just me, but Nails Inc. has the best long-wearing formula in my opinion. After a week's worth of sporting Victoria, I only had minimal tip wear, and almost no chips. That never happens to me considering I'm a compulsive cuticle picker. I wish my local Sephora carried a better variety of shades though.

Movie of the week: Son of Rambow. Seriously, this is the best movie I've seen in a long time. I don't know what it is about twisted coming-of-age movies, but they always get to me and pull at my heartstrings. Little Miss Sunshine, Pan's Labyrinth and Moonrise Kingdom are among my favorites. Son of Rambow follows the story of Will, a young boy member of the Plymouth Brethren movement, who sees a movie for the first time: Rambo. Having never been allowed to watch TV and living a very sheltered life, the experience wakens his imagination. Will and his friend decide to make a movie to enter the Screen Test Youth Film Competition. This story is amazingly heartfelt and true to life. Bonus: Ed Westwick is in the movie.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Clinique Chubby Stick in Two Ton Tomato - Review and Swatches!

I'd like to share with you my new favorite product! I recently purchased Clinique's Chubby Stick in Two Ton Tomato and I absolutely love it! It's very similar to Revlon's Kissable Balm Stain but I find this formula more moisturizing and less waxy. Granted, it doesn't last as long because it is most of a glossy lipstick, but it does leave behind a nice stain.

 Swatch on my hand.

Generously applied on my lips.

If you're looking for a quick and easy way to add color to your lips, I highly suggest this Chubby Stick. It's compact enough to carry around, lightweight and easy to use. It even has a retractable base. Plus, I don't think you can go wrong with this shade - it's a pinky/coral bright summery shade that would look great on any complexion. And if you're not a fan of bright colors, you can always apply it lightly for a soft stain!

Hope your weekend is going well!  It's a long weekend here in Canada and I must say, my extra day off is really needed!