Saturday, April 27, 2013

Deborah Lippmann Let's Go Crazy!

Happy Saturday everyone!

Just wanted to do a quick post to show you what's been on my tips this past week.

Deborah Lippmann Let's Go Crazy is a gorgeous deep grape color, interspersed with multicolor glitter. The base color has a sheer jelly finish.

I read a few reviews of this polish which said the formula was a bit thick but I had absolutely zero problem with it. The glitter applied pretty evenly, and the polish was opaque with two coats. And, even better, it lasted on me a week with barely any tip wear. That's unheard of for me!

I have to say, this is definitely a winner for me. I loved wearing it! However, this definitely needs to be removed with the foil method (you wrap your nails with a cotton pad and foil and leave for a few minutes - the polish and glitter comes right off!)

Have a great rest of the weekend! Hope your weather is as nice as ours!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Finally, the Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in 06 Rosewood Shimmer

I say finally, because I've been meaning to (re)try the Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector for a long long time.

See, the story starts about 4 years ago, when Clarins first came out with the Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector (or some version of it). I, being a budding beauty addict, decided to purchase this delicious smelling product only to find myself having an allergic reaction to the product. I was so upset because it was one of my favorite products at the time - but my swollen, peeling lips were or the opinion that it just wasn't going to work.

Fast forward to today: my lips are no longer sensitive to products. Sure, once in a while, I get a flare up, but it seems to be simply because my lips are too dry to handle pigmented lip products. And I get the feeling that because I didn't apply much balm 4 years ago, the flare up was probably caused by my lips' dry condition.

So when I was given the opportunity to try out the Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in their new shade 06 Rosewood Shimmer, I was really excited to give it another go!

Let me just say it: this product is amazing. I think most of you already suspected this since it is usually well reviewed by beauty bloggers.

For me, the Lip Perfector was very moisturizing. My lips are very finicky and most lipsticks or glosses dry them up. When I applied the Lip Perfector before work in the morning, by lunch time, my lips were soft and moisturized. Usually, I'd be dealing with a dry lips situation at lunch, no matter what product I applied. That gets huge points from me.

I also really like the smell of this balm. It might be too much for some people, but for me, it has a pleasant caramelly scent. And fortunately, it tastes just like what it smells like - not plasticky at all. Not that I eat my lip products or anything, but it's never pleasant to accidentally lick your lips and taste your lip product. You know what I mean.

I chose #06 Rosewood Shimmer of Clarins' newly released shades (the other two are Petal Shimmer and Candy Shimmer) because it seemed like the perfect "my lips but better" shade. My lips aren't very pigmented, so I usually tend to go for beige-nudes when I look for a "my lips but better" lip product. Anything pink just doesn't look natural on me. Well, my predictions were right. This is truly the best looking "my lips but better" I have ever found. See the comparison below!

Rosewood #06, on my hand. From the swatch, you can't tell that there is micro fine shimmer in the gloss. I had to really look for it to find it - it's not visible when applied.

See? It looks so natural!

Of course, this being a non-sticky balm/gloss type product, it doesn't last very long on the lips. I'm not too bothered by this fact because I can re-apply this product easily without a mirror, sitting at my work desk. However, if you absolutely hate to re-apply, this might not be for you.

I'm very happy with this product. Finding a product that doesn't dry up my lips is hard enough, but the Clarins Lip Perfector get bonus points for being my perfect "my lips but better" shade. I know I'll be using this one a lot.

Have you tried the Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector? What do you think of it? 

* I have received this product 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.

Monday, April 22, 2013

On Trend with Joe Fresh White Nail Polish!

Does this new "white nail polish trend" remind anyone of painting your nails with white-out when you were a kid? The bumpy white-out nail look of middle school was not very pretty and the fumes were definitely not healthy either. Oh, the early days of a beauty addict!

Still, in these backstage pictures from the Rag & Bone Spring 2013 runway show, I can't help but think of how elegant the white nails look. It's clean, dainty, and feminine.

 (source // source)

I was starting to get pretty curious with this white nail polish trend and thought I'd finally give it a try. I figured a pretty risk-free way (in case it looked horrible on me) was to find a pretty cheap white color, and I ended up falling on Joe Fresh's polish named, you guessed it, White.

And you know what? It really grew on me!

The polish isn't too stark against my skin tone, and it wore surprisingly well! It helped that the formula was quite nice, and opaque in two coats. And as a bonus, it made my hands look quite tanned.

I'm kind of sold on white nail polish because 1) it goes with everything 2) it's quite feminine and 3) hello tanned hands.

If you'd like something less stark, you could always try a white polish with shimmer as it tends to soften the bright white look.

Are you going to be trying out this trend?

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Maybelline's ColorSensational Vivid in Vivid Mandarin

I've been obsessed with orange this spring. Blazers, shoes, lips, blush, nails - I'm loving the bright and cheerful color! So it felt natural picking up Maybelline's Vivid Mandarin lipstick to update my makeup wardrobe for spring!

Fair warning: this baby is BRIGHT.

The Maybelline ColorSensational Vivids has been causing quite a stir among us beauty lovers. They promise to deliver intense color, while still nourishing your lips with honey nectar.

Swatched on my hand.

I like this lipstick! For the price, you really cannot find anything like it. However, I do find the lipstick a bit drying. Perhaps it was only because my lips were dry when I wore it, butI found the lipstick to wear well, yet suck the moisture out of my lips. It was very creamy upon application though!

Even if it's a bit drying, I definitely recommend Vivid Mandarin, especially if you're, like me, looking to update your makeup bag for spring on the cheap. I haven't tried the other colors from the new Maybelline Vivid line, but if orange isn't your thing, you might want to try any of the other amazing looking shades!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Best of: 5 Pinks Great Pink Nail Polishes You Need

I'm not too big on pink polishes. Don't get me wrong, I like pink polishes, but unless they are absolutely amazing, I usually forget about them, give them away, or they wither in the back of my stash. These 5 polishes however truly some of my favorites. All of these were worn several times (hands & feet alike) and have truly stood the test of time since I've had them all for over a year and are still amazing polishes in my eyes.

From left to right: China Glaze Pink Plumeria (reviewed here), OPI Japanese Rose Garden (reviewed here - apologies for my poor photography skills at the time), Butter London Snog (reviewed here), Essie Eternal Optimist (reviewed here - wow, I guess I didn't understand the concept of "natural light" back then) , Deborah Lippmann Pop Life (reviewed here)

Left to right again: China Glaze Pink Plumeria, OPI Japanese Rose Garden, Butter London Snog, Essie Eternal Optimist, Deborah Lippmann Pop Life

Pink Plumeria is one of those colors I had to have as soon as I saw swatches of it online last summer. It's bright, summery, and quite unique in color. I wore this color a lot last summer and plan on wearing it plenty this summer again. OPI's Japanese Rose Garden is one of those muted pinks for when you want to wear something feminine but subtle. Its formula is excellent and the color is so easy to wear. It's especially great for those of you who don't like bright polish. Butter London's Snog is hands down my favorite pink polish ever. It's bright, cheerful, and wearing it just makes me happy. The brush in my bottle of Snog is wonky, but that doesn't stop me from wearing it over and over (especially on my toes!).  It is very similar to Essie's Watermelon in case you are looking for a slightly a cheaper option. Essie's Eternal Optimist was one of those colors I kept seeing at my local Shoppers Drug Mart, unsure of whether I'd like it or not. When I finally took the plunge, I was really happy I did. Eternal Optimist is a great neutral and is a great option for when you're looking for something a little bit more interesting than a nude nail. I've owned Deborah Lippmann's Pop Life for many years now, and when I think of the most classic pink in my collection, Pop Life is definitely it. Pop Life's pink color is clean and vibrant without being neon. I love it and plan to apply it to my toes in the next couple hours!

Of these, my favorites are Pink Plumeria, Snog and Pop Life - perhaps I'm partial to brights even if I'm not a "pink" girl?

I'd love to know what YOUR favorite pink polishes are? List them below!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Fashion Friday: An Announcement

Hi Everyone!

Today, I have a semi-special announcement. Well, one that I'm excited about anyway. I've decided to start a fashion blog! I felt my Fashion Friday posts felt out of place here and I decided I wanted to keep this blog being mostly makeup and skincare, as it has always been. I want to say a quick thanks though to everyone who was kind enough to read, and comment on Fashion Friday - your support was amazing!

If you like fashion blogs, feel free to follow me over at Bold Subtlety. If that's not your cup of tea, no problem! I will still be as present as ever on thesmalllittlethingsinlife!

Hope you guys have a great weekend and I will be back shorty with the regular scheduled program!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

China Glaze's Fade Into Hue - Swatch and Drool...

China Glaze's new(ish) collection for spring is absolutely amazing. Avant Garden has great summery fresh shades, and I may or may not want every single one in the collection. Well, except the murky green. So it was with great restraint that I only purchased three shades of the collection.

My favorite so far? BOOM:

It is so pretty! Fade Into Hue is a gorgeous periwinkle/lavender shade. I slash the two colors together because it's quite hard to describe the color! In this picture, it looks quite blue. But in the shade, the polish can look almost lavender. It doesn't have any shimmer. I find shimmer is often added to soften the look of a white based shade, but this baby doesn't need it. It definitely doesn't look chalky against my skin tone. I had no problems with the formula - the polish was smooth and opaque in two coats. Such a dream to work with.

Okay, sure, I might be over excited about this, but it's so pretty and makes me think of summer. Plus, I got tons of compliments on this polish (oh hi cashier at Superstore!)

Hope your week is off to a great start! Bye!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

March Favorites!

This is a bit late but I'm really excited to shade my March favorites with you! I don't always do monthly favorites, mostly because I have a short makeup attention span and don't stick to specific products, but March was different!

1. I seriously cannot rave enough about the Shu Uemura Glow on Blush in M Pink 31. There's something so easy about wearing this blush - I barely have to blend it in, and it suits every type of makeup from smokey eye to natural face.

2. I've recently been loving an easy, run out the door, lip. Chanel's Rouge Coco Shine in Boy is the perfect shade to slap and go. It's pink, shiny and natural. The only slight negative to it is the smell - I don't really like the rosey scent of the Rouge Coco Shine. Nevertheless, this has been a March favorite - I might actually finish the tube at this rate!

3. After I stopped poking myself in the eye with the Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume mascara, I really started to like it. I don't know if it's just because I've started being clumsy in life generally (seriously, I've broken a blender, a candle and a bowl in the past few months) but when I first got this mascara, I kept poking the wand in my eye! And it freaking hurt! After I got used to it (the wand, not the poking), I started to realize how good this mascara is. It reminds me a lot of the Make Up For Ever Smokey Lash mascara which I love, but less clumpy. The formula isn't too liquid, and it really coats the lashes. Love!

4. While this month I've run so late for work I haven't had a chance to put on eyeshadow, the times that I've had a chance, I've really enjoyed the NARS Small Dome Brush 12. This brush is super soft and blends like a dream. For people who do not have a lot of lid space like me, it is perfect for plotting out my crease. Sometimes I find the MAC 217 is a bit too big for my lids and works better for blending out the edges of your eye makeup. I highly recommend the NARS Small Dome Brush for the gals out there like me that need something more precise than the 217 for the crease!

5. NARS Dolce Vita is just one of those perfect lipsticks. I've had this lipstick in my bag all month and have loved wearing it. I love how this lipstick feels polished, but not obvious. And how it's glossy but not shimmery. And I love that it doesn't dry out my lips. One of my best NARS purchases right there.

6. March has been the month of the Bourgeois Healthy Mix foundation as it is now empty! I've really liked wearing this foundation - while I do need a powder to make this last all day, it really an amazing lightweight foundation. I don't think I'll be repurchasing it right away (especially since it wears best on me in the winter months) but this is a winner in my books.

7. When I first got my MAC 129, I was a bit disappointed. The brush hairs felt rough, and it just didn't blend as well as I would have liked. After a few washes, the bristles have softened and I'm really enjoying it! I've been reaching for this all month over my Real Techniques brushes. Glad this wasn't a bust after all!

8. A new discovery this month has been the Hydraluron Moisture Booster. Because Caroline Hirons knows how to talk about skincare and I don't, go read her post about this product. I must say, I'm really really happy with it. Acne scarring on my cheek was gone in half the time it would usually take to fade. Good news for us Canadian girls, Shoppers Drug Mart now carries it!

Thanks for ready my March favorites! Have a great week!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Fashion Friday: The Orange Blazer

Today was such a beautiful day, it was actually warm enough to wear a blazer! Without a coat over it! This is what I actually wore to work today. Granted, I did have a coat in the morning, but the afternoon warmed up so much I tossed it. Spring is putting me in such a good mood!

I find it refreshes an outfit to wear a bright blazer. I got lucky with this one - I found this beauty on Trend Trunk for $15 since I already had some credits to my account.

Necklace - Silpada // Sunglasses - Ray Ban // Orange Blazer - Zara // T-Shirt - Gap // Denim - DL1961 // Loafers- Banana Republic  // Bag - Linea Pelle

Actually most of my outfit have been cheap finds! The bag is from Ebay, the glasses were snatch by my brother on Kijiji, and the jeans were bought when our local The Bay was closing and were 90% off! The loafers were 40% off when I bought them, and the t-shirt was only $12. I'm a savvy shopper, I tell ya! Too bad makeup doesn't work that way!

Have a great Friday everyone!

Clarins Double Serum, and introducing Mom the Reviewer!

A while back, I was invited by Clarins to try out their newest skin product: the Double Serum: Complete Age Control Concentrate.

My skin is extremely sensitive to products. The wrong foundation or primer, and my skin can have a full-on break out. I have acne-prone skin, and have a tendency to have a couple of active breakouts at a time. Sometimes my skin is happy, and I barely have any problems. Lately though, my skin hasn't been so easy to tame. I'm still dealing with scarring from the last breakout which I am trying to help by using Hydraluron (more on this little miracle later). I did not want to risk aggravating my breakouts by testing this on my skin.

Why didn't I test a product that claims to be suitable for every skin type? Well, honestly, because it is full of mineral oil.  I'm not really one to scan my skin products and read every single ingredient - I'm not familiar enough with skin care ingredients to understand them and their function. But I knew mineral oil wasn't good (I trust Caroline Hirons and her rant) and can result in clogged pores. And my skin just wasn't in a state to be messed with.

However, because I did not want to pass on the opportunity of reviewing something for this blog, I asked my mother to test this product out and give me her views on it!

My mother has combination skin. She's not very sensitive to products and her main concern is wrinkles at this point. Disclaimer: she absolutely loves this product. At the time I'm writing this, she has tested it over a couple months, and is 3/4th of the way through the bottle. She uses it once in the morning and at night, dispensing two pumps for each application - one pump for the face, and the other for her neck. Any excess left on her hands is massaged in, and she claims it has helped her hands stay softer. I actually ran into a Clarins rep who gave me that helpful tip, which I then passed on to my mom.

Like I said, my mother has been very impressed with this product. She claims it has made her skin softer, and plumper. She says that her pores have tightened up. Looking at her skin, I agree with this claim - I find my mom's skin to have more of a soft focus finish. She likes the light scent of the product, and doesn't find it irritating or harsh. And she also loves that the pump system is easy to work with - it dispenses the exact right amount for her to use.

My mother did notice her skin to be a bit oilier by the end of the day, but didn't mind correcting this by using a bit of powder after her foundation. At 4 pumps a day rate, the product also used up quite quickly. It's not cheap ($85) and can be expensive to replace every few months.

All and all, my mother loved this product. The mineral oil didn't bother her skin one bit, and I wouldn't be surprised if she purchased it herself after she's done with the bottle.

Bottom line: know your skin. If you're skin isn't sensitive, perhaps this is a product you should try - it definitely had positive effect on my mother's skin with long term usage. However, if you're picky about ingredients in your skin care regime, I'd check the label of the Clarins Double Serum to make sure you're okay with it.

Hope this was helpful for you! And thanks to my dear Mama for testing and reviewing this product for me!

* I have received this product 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.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Quest for the Perfect Orange Polish with GOSH Peachy

My coworker and I were talking the other day about finding that perfect spring orange nail polish. I had a perfect candidate in mind - I remembered an Essence nail polish I had purchased a year or so ago and LOVED it's bright orange hue. Looking through my stash, I quickly realized it was gone. Now, a true danger of owning so many polish is lending some bottles to people and forgetting what they are, and who they went to! So I was pretty bummed about losing that Essence polish, especially since that shade is now discontinued.

So I did what any sensible beauty addict might do - I went to the drugstore in search of a replacement. 

What I found definitely wasn't "it", but it was close enough for the time being.

GOSH's Peachy shade pull a bit more coral than I wish it did (damn that store lighting) but I quite like it anyway. I found it flattering on my skintone, and thought it wore well enough.

The only really bummer about this polish was that it took three coats to get it to look even. After two coats, I just get annoyed. But if it doesn't bother you like it does me, it really is a lovely summery shade!

Do you like orange polishes? What are you favorites? 

Hope you all had a great Easter weekend! Just a quick note to say thank you to all the people who visit this blog. I mentioned on Twitter today that I just realized I passed my two year blog anniversary a few weeks ago! It didn't even cross my mind! Either way, just wanted to thank you all for visiting, commenting, supporting and reading my blog. You've really made this an amazing experience.

Until next time lovelies!