Friday, December 30, 2016

MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Light Fusion Highlighter 01 Golden Pink Review

It's almost NYE, so what better way to start the New Year than with a pretty badass highlighter on yo face? That's my plan anyway.

I'll be spending my NYE at an outside (freezing) location for Canada 150 celebrations. Woo! So, no fancy dresses, so high-heels I can't walk in - no, I'll be sporting my thickest, puffy coat, a tuque, and the new winter boots I was gifted for Christmas. We ain't joking around in this part of the country.

What I CAN sport however in frigid weather, is a lovely highlighter. In fact, because my eyes stream as the tiniest amount of wind, I'll be highlighter and waterproof mascara for me. Oh, Canada.

MAKE UP FOR EVER's Pro Light Fusion Highlighters have made quite the splash around social media. Temptalia even put it in her top 20 of the year!

I have to say, I'm not the kind of person who puts highlighter on every day, but this product is so lovely, I've been seen slathering it on for work.

MAKE UP FOR EVER's Pro Light Fusion has a smooth, buttery texture. I find the texture of the BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed a bit too soft, and it has a tendency to crumble. I find I can easily apply too much because the texture is so soft. The Pro Light Fusion's texture is just right for me. Smooth and buttery when applied, but it doesn't crumble, and it's a lot more buildable. There's no risk of applying too much, especially with a fluffier brush.

And I mean, I just get happy opening the damn product. Look at that pattern!

I received the shade 01 Golden Pink for consideration and it's a stunning shade. At first, I thought it might be a bit too pink, but it doesn't register as pink on the skin. It's a light frosty cool toned ivory-pink. It's simply lovely. The shimmer is fine and contains no chunky glitter. It actually looks pretty natural on the skin.

I've taken a few picture of a heavy swatch of the product on my hand in warmer light, and in brighter cooler light. As you can see, it still looks quite ivory-pink. Sephora lists this highlighter as "for light to medium skintones" and I would tend to agree with them. The second shade, 02 Golden, also looks absolutely stunning. Have you tried it?

I have to say, unlike a lot of bloggers out there, I've never gotten on the highlighter bandwagon, simply because I have oilier skin. But this highlighter is the BOMB. It's very lovely and shimmery on the skin, without being too much for me. I 100% this product if you're looking for a similar shade of highlighter - I'm pretty sure BECCA don't make a similar shade (Opal is a lot more ivory than pink). However, if you're looking to BLIND someone with your highlighter, I'd suggest you move along to BECCA products. At $48 CAN, this highlighter is not cheap, but I personally would purchase it in a heartbeat - it's worth the investment.

* 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, December 6, 2016

Zoeva Makeup Brush Review - 231, 226, 234 and 114

As a treat to myself a few weeks ago, I made a naughty purchase - I bought some makeup brushes from Zoeva. Ok, I actually bought these about a year ago, and this review sat on the back burner for quite a while. But hey, now you're just getting a better review because I've been testing them for so long!

While some other bloggers/youtubers claim Zoeva brushes are an "affordable" brush option, for us Canadians, they are not really that affordable. With about C$20 in shipping, averaging each brush around $15, the prices of the brushes itself are just ok. Definitely not a crazy bargain.

My purchases?

- 231 Luxe Petit Crease
- 226 Smudger
- 234 Luxe Smoky Shader
- 114 Luxe Face Focus

The brushes themselves are of excellent quality. The handles are solid and I haven't had any shedding problems with the brushes. I'd say the quality is comparable to my MAC brushes - however, the glossy finish on the handle does make them seem less luxurious - although that's simply my opinion. I prefer a matte finish such as my MAC brushes, or my NARS brushes.

The 231 Luxe Petit Crease is a brush that was missing in my arsenal. The tip of the brush is more precise than a MAC 217 and smaller. It's very useful for applying eyeshadow precisely in the crease, or the outer crease. I was initially apprehensive about the stiffness of the brush thinking it would not blend eyeshadow properly, but in fact, it works like a charm. It applies the shadow right where I want it, but also blended it softly. This brush is a must if you lack something similar in your repertoire.

The 226 Smudger brush was also something I was missing in my collection. I don't often put eyeshadow on my lower lashline - all my brushes are a bit too big for the job. I find shadow on my lower lashes can also make me look a bit tired - I just don't have a lot of space to work with. This Smudger brush, however, does the job amazingly. Not only does it apply shadow on my bottom lashline very close to my lashline, but it also smudges it out easily. However, my favorite way to use this brush is to smudge out liner on my upper lashline to add a bit of smokiness to an every day look. A must in any collection.

I'm going to be honest, I bought the 234 Luxe Smoky Shader brush simply because I wanted a dupe for my MAC 239, and I think I found it! While this brush is a tad (seriously just a bit) less dense, it performs just as well as my 239. In fact, I have a hard time finding differences between the two when I can't see the handles.

My intention for the 114 Face Focus was to use it as a highlighting brush. When I received it though, it was way smaller than I thought it would be. Still, it's not comparable to anything else I own, and applies highlighter smoothly and beautifully. I like that it deposits highlighter in more specific areas of my face (I'm not one to highlight a ton) and it blends the highlight easily.

As I said, the quality of these brushes is excellent. I've used them for about a year now, washed them numerous times, and they're still in great shape. They haven't frayed at the edges, and they haven't stained.

If you're looking to invest in a good set of brushes, but not "invest" in pricier classic brushes such as MAC, I highly recommend Zoeva brushes. I'm very happy with the quality of my purchase and they definitely measure up to other high quality brushes such as MAC. A+!

Monday, June 6, 2016

INGLOT 10 Pan Palette Review & Swatches

As a beauty blogger, it's safe to say that I've tested a LOT of products. And in time, I've become pickier and pickier about the products I hold on to. I've returned or gotten rid of palettes that are beloved by beauty addicts such as the Naked 2 and the Too Faced Chocolate palette. I can't help it, my tastes have evolved! That's why the Inglot make your own palette option is kind of perfect for me.

During a 20% off sale (they do happen, there is hope!) I purchased 8 shades (I already owned 2 I really liked) and a 10 pan palette.

Just look at this neutral goodness. All shades I can use on a daily basis, with a good mix of matte shades and shimmers.

As you can see, I totally nicked one of my older shadows. Oh well. That's my one complaint with the packaging - it's super easy to nick shadows are they are quite hard to remove from the pan.

The swatches below indicate the shadows, and their finish.
Matte 328 (M328), Shine 154, Pearl 406 (P406), Pearl 409 (P409) Pearl 397 (P397), Matte 337 (M337), Matte 360 (M360), and the shadows I already owned, Pearl 402 (P402) and Pearl 422 (P422).

While I thought my favorite shades would be the Shine finishes, I actually absolutely love the Pearl finishes. I already loved 402, but 397 is a better and improved MAC All That Glitters. It's absolutely perfect for a quick every day eye with a bit of Matte 337 and 360 in the crease. The Matte shadows are of amazing quality. I had heard reviews that described them as being powdery - I tend to agree that they are on the more powdery side, but I think that's what makes a matte shadow really blendable and easy to work with. And this is true here - the shades are buttery soft and incredibly easy to blend. I felt like the Matte shadows in the Too Faced Chocolate palette were way more powdery. Pearl 406 is a bit too orange for me, so I wear this shade less often. I love Matte 328 to prime my lids (after a my trusty Urban Decay Lid Primer of course). It doesn't appear on my skin, but it makes my shadow last even longer. The Shine 154 and 153 are gorgeous, but they really are quite ... shiny! While I thought these would be everyday shadows, I find them quite intense. Still though, they're absolutely stunning and the finish reminds me of the very shimmery Anastasia shadows that recently released.

I do regret not including a dark brown in this palette. In fact, I might switch one of them out for a deep brown. Silly me, I was swayed by all the beautiful shimmery options, I didn't include a dark brown. Other than for that omission, this palette is pretty much the perfect neutral palette.

As a side note, I do think Inglot could do some work on their website to make the shadows easier to pick out. The only thing available is a color swatch (not a real photo) and the shade name. No description of the shade, and you the different finishes are divided into different categories. It's all very confusing. The websites indicates how much is left in stock, but no shade description. Makes no sense. I feel like a they'd get a lot more purchases if the website was easier to navigate and they included shade descriptions. It was quite the process picking out a shadow and doing tons of googling to see how the shade looks in real life. And that X8 was almost too much. I'm glad I persisted because these shadows are totally worth it. But unless you can get yourself to a store (they do have a few in Canada!) you're in for a treat.

Hope this review was helpful to you. I think that if you have the patience to pick these shadows out, they are 100% worth it. In terms of quality, I'd say they definitely surpass my MAC shadows, and are quite similar in texture to Anastasia shadows I own. They are incredibly long lasting, a quality that's very important to me as I have oily eyelids.

Monday, May 9, 2016

What's in my Z Palette? Swatches Included!

Because I've spent some time building the perfect palette in the past few months, getting rid of shadows I don't use, and re-purchasing shadows I'd used up, I thought it would be fun to do a post on what's in my Z-Palette.

So, without further ado, let's get to the pictures and swatches!

Some favorites include MAC's Satin Taupe, Wedge and Woodwinked. Other favorites include Anastasia Beverly Hills Chiffon, Make Up For Ever ME-644 (this shadow is seriously stunning), and Rouge Bunny Rouge's Bohemian Waxwing.

Hope you had fun looking into my Z-Palette. If you have any questions about these shadows, don't hesitate to leave your questions below! I'd be happy to answer!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Milani Everyday Eyes Eyeshadow Palette 05 Earthy Elements Review

After seeing this palette appear on Tati's Youtube Channel I was secretly praying that they would appear in Canada. As us Canadians beauty lovers know, not everything the US has in terms of drugstore makeup makes it across the border.

I found my palette at my local Lawtons (Rexall, I believe for other provinces) and waited a couple weeks to finally find it on sale. Score!

I bought the 05 Earthy Elements palette to review which contains 6 shades.

Palette in the shade.

And because I was working with sun that day, palette in the sun.

The shadows are of surprising quality. They are quite buttery without being powdery and blend extremely easily on the lid. The only "meh" shade is the first shade of the palette which is quite hard in texture and difficult to pick up with a brush (and with fingers). However, all the other shades are quite amazing. The shadows lasted on my oily eyelids (with primer) all day, no problem.

Left to right in the palette, in the shade.

Left to right in the palette, in direct sunlight. You can see here that the first shade is a glittery chunky mess.

The second shade from the left in this palette is the perfect crease color. It's so easy to blend, and it's the perfect warm, but not too warm, buttery crease color. It reminds me a lot of MAC's Wedge. The orange shade (third from the left) is so pigmented and bright! It's a bit too bright for my tastes, but it blends wonderfully. These two matte shades are of excellent quality - and we know drugstore matte shades tend to be duds. The last shade of the palette is an excellent dupe of MAC's Sable and is super easy to work with. My favorite is definitely the fourth shade - it's a perfect one and done shadow.

Even if these colors are dupeable, this palette would be very useful to travel with as the packaging is quite sturdy. For a palette that's less than C$15, you definitely get your money's worth out of the 5 shades that are of excellent quality. Plus, the warm tones are gorgeous for anyone with blue/green eyes! B+

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Anastasia Dipbrow Pomade in Ash Brown + Sephora Collection Pro Brow Brush #20

The Anastasia Dip Brow Pomade seems to be one of those items that divides beauty bloggers - they either love it, or absolutely hate it. While it does seem to have excellent reviews on Sephora, I personally sit somewhere in the middle.

I bought this product about 3 months ago in the shade Ash Brown. The pomade is smudge-free and waterproof and is meant to be applied with a brush. I bought a Sephora Collection Pro Brow Brush #20 to use with it. I solely chose it because it had decent reviews, and it had a spoolie on the end.

First off, do not buy this brush. I love a firm angle brush, and while I thought it would be fine for eyebrows, it does not apply the product as precisely as I would like. This is definitely a pass for me.

As for the pomade itself. It's only ok. I like to use it when I have a bit more time for makeup because it's a lot easier to create a full eyebrow look with this product as opposed to a brow pencil. Plus, it really does stay all day on my skin. However, the faff of the pomade itself is not always worth it to me since I'm all about practicality in makeup.

The color itself is pretty perfect for my brows. However, it's quite pigmented (as you can see in the swatch) and doesn't allow too many mistakes. In fact, in the swatch above, you can see how the product gradually wears off the brush. The last stroke from the brush would be my ideal texture and pigmentation. Instead, I have to work with that first swatch which can be a bit difficult.

I have read other reviews that indicate that this pomade does dry down a bit and the texture gets better. But you know, who wants to wait for that?

If you're used to pencils for your brows, I'd say don't bother with this. Pencils, in my opinion, work much better. If you're a beauty fanatic, and don't mind a bit of extra time on your makeup, then this might be for you. And at C$23 for a product that you use only a tiny little bit at a time, it's a decent bang for your buck.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Lipstick Musings #1 - Coloupop Lumière and Aquarius and Bite Beauty Glacé

I love lipstick, but I'm not going to lie, when I do my makeup in the mornings, I'm in such a rush that I barely even think of what I'm putting on my lips before I step out the door. All the more reason for some useful, go with everything lipsticks in my arsenal.

Today I bring you three lipsticks I've been loving lately. Colourpop has been coming out with some lovely shades lately and two of my favourites have been Lumière and Aquarius, coincidentally, both created in collaboration with Kathleen Lights. Both are so easy to apply and go well with any makeup look. The only downside? For some reason, Aquarius smells like caramel, and I really don't like it.

Everyone seems to just love the Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayons, me included. I truly have never found such a creamy matte moisturizing lipstick. My shade of the moment - Glacé, a dusty mauve shade that brightens up my complexion. It's such an easy to wear shade.

Lumière, Glacé and Aquarius.

What's been your lipstick of choice lately?

Monday, March 28, 2016

Pantene Expert Intense Colorcare

Last week, in a not so seasonal storm, I had fun taking a few shots of the Pantene Expert Intense Colorcare Shampoo and Conditioner with my husband (who stayed inside, shooting through the patio door xox).

To see the full review, check out my Instagram post here.

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess in 02 Medium Review + Comparison Swatches

Being a pale lady, finding a good bronzer has always been quite a challenge for me. They're either too yellow, not warm enough, too glittery... and the list goes on. After reading a ton of reviews (as I do when buying any product) on the Estee Lauder Bronzer Goddess in 02 Medium, I thought it might be a good match.

First off, it's massive! You're sure to have plenty to last you a whole year! Secondly, the packaging is pretty damn perfect - sturdy with a tortoise shell patter with a gigantic mirror on the inside. Love!

The blush is smooth, and easy to blend. The shade is quite neutral, yet leans a bit warm, and almost has a tinge of pink. I find it quite flattering on my skintone. You can't tell from the pictures, but it does contain a bit of shimmer. I don't find this translates on my face at all.

Because it's so difficult to swatch a bronzer alone (how can you tell if it's warm or ashy?) I decided to pull my bronzers and compare it to the Bronze Goddess in Medium 02.

In the shade, on a sunny day

In the sun, on a sunny day

As you can see in the swatches, the Estee Lauder bronzer applies quite smoothly. Comparatively, the Kevin Aucoin Sculpting Power, Body Shop Bronzer and Nars Laguna appear to be harder to blend out - I'd say this is accurate with a brush application on the face as well. To be fair, my Nars Laguna is really old and needs to be thrown out. So let's not judge the swatch - it's still a great product. The Body Shop Bronzer in 01, as you may be able to tell, isn't very pigmented - it appears powdery because I really had to layer it for the color to show up. And yeah, I'm not a big fan on that one.

In terms of shade, it seems to be somewhere in the middle of MAC Harmony and The Body Shop Bronzer. I wouldn't use the Kevin Aucoin Sculpting Powder for bronzer as it is very ashy brown.

If you're looking for a good bronzer for the summer I definitely recommend this one - but try it on first as bronzers can appear different on everyone! The Estee Lauder bronzer retails for C$42 for 0.74 oz while the Nars Laguna is C$52 for 0.28 oz. Yikes! Guess which one I'll be re-purchasing... if I ever finish it!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Clinique Pop Lip Colour in Nude Pop 01 and Bare Pop 02 Review

I don't know why it took me so long to try these, but I only got around to trying these Clinique Pop Lip Colour a few months ago. Actually, that's not totally accurate. I've had the Nude Pop 01 for a while, but had only worn it a few times. To be honest, I wasn't totally impressed but wanted to give it a fair shot. The reviews were so great on this, maybe I was missing something?

I started wearing Nude Pop 01 a lot more and the texture seemed to change. It was more emollient and smooth - maybe it just needed breaking in? I wanted to try a different shade so I decided to give Bare Pop 02 a go.

I love their packaging. How neat is it that their packaging correspond with the color inside the tube? Unfortunately, the two I own are so similar that I can't really tell them apart by looking! The rest of the range however has quite varied colors. The packaging is also sturdy and the cap feels very secure.

The formula is quite nice. I wouldn't say this is a very moisturizing lipstick, but it's comfortable to wear. It's a lot moisturizing for me than say a MAC lipstick - those tend to make my lips peel. I get a good 4+ hours wear out of these. For my drinking coffee/eating snacks all day self, that's pretty damn good.

Nude Pop 01 on the left, Bare Pop 02 on the right

Errrm, this is awkward. They look almost exactly the same in the swatch! I swear, on the lips, they look completely different on me. Bare Pop looks like a dark blush nude and Nude Pop looks like a true pinky nude on my lips. Bare Pop also has quite a heavy glitter - which almost put me off purchasing it. The glitter doesn't really transfer on the lips - it's there, but it wears off beautifully and you're not left with glitter chunks on your lips once the lipstick wears off. Thank goodness or else it would be a fail for me! Nude Pop is truly a perfect nude - not too pink, not too brown, and goes with everything. You can't go wrong with that one.

If you're in the market for a new lipstick, I'd highly recommend you check the range. There are a ton of colours available, and in true Clinique fashion, affordable and less than high-end brands retailing at C $22.

Have you tried these lipsticks? Which shade is your favorite? Send me some recommendations - I've got my eye on Plum Pop next!

Monday, March 7, 2016

February Favorites Featuring Lorac, Lise Watier, Clarins, Estee Lauder and more!

A little late, but here are the products I've been using non-stop this February!

I never bothered purchasing the Lorac Pro when all the hype was happening around it. But this past winter, I saw it on Ebay for a reasonable price and thought it would be fun to try it out! Don't worry, it's completely authentic - I did a ton or research to make sure I wasn't getting duped. I'm happy to report that I've gotten a ton of use out of this beauty. The matte shades are soft and easy to blend, the shimmery shades are gorgeous and pigmented, and you can pretty much create any look with this! My favorite shades this month have been the Gold shade and the Light Bronze. Unfortunately, this palette isn't readily available in Canada, but you can purchase it on Amazon (sadly, at a ridiculous mark up).

I've been try to curate my makeup brushes this month and one of the stand outs I've recently purchased at Winners is this Olive & Olivia angled brush. I struggled for the longest time to find a brush in my collection that worked well for applying the Kevin Aucoin Sculpting Powder but this brush works perfectly. It picks up the colour quite lightly and blends it out so easily. Unfortunately, I can't find this brush online, but check your local Winners in case it's available! Keep your eyes open for a favorite brush post soon on this blog!

The two lip products I've been completely obsessed over has been the Clarins Instant Light Lip Perfector in 08 (as you may have guessed) and the Lise Watier Baume Gourmand in Rose. You can read the Lip Perfector review here, but basically, I absolutely love this product. I bought 07 this weekend and cannot wait to wear it! The Lise Watier Baume Gourmand was a surprise for me - I purchased it on a whim at a Shoppers Spend Your Points event and have worn it so much since. It description is accurate - it's a balm as it does have moisturizing properties, but it also gives quite the lovely natural pink flush of colour on my lips. I've been loving this easy to wear option. And plus, the packaging is adorable!

I've long been a fan of Estee Lauder's Double Wear Stay-In-Place Eye Pencil formula, the black colour being one of my favorite liners ever. So it was only natural that I pick up the Coffee 02 colour eventually and it's quickly becoming my favorite brown liner. It has a lovely smudger on the end which is super convenient for smoking out your liner. And it seriously stays on all day.

Laura Mercier's blush in Spiced Cider is not a blush I would have picked up had I not seen it on other bloggers with fair skin. It seems so dark in the pan and the shade is what I would describe as a terracotta rose/coral. On the skin, it gives me such a gorgeous glow that I've been wearing it a lot this past month with more bronze eyeshadow. I've already professed my love for Laura Mercier blushes and seriously don't know why these don't get more love.

For your convenience, I've added swatches of the products below.

As always, thank you for reading and visiting my blog!