Winter Luxe Box 2015

Well, here we are in the middle of January and I’m going to talk about a box I got…. almost six weeks ago. On the bright side, it’s a quarterly box so the next one won’t show up for another six weeks.

Without any further ado, here is the Winter Luxe Box from Loose Button. This was shipped on Nov 30th and arrived the first week in December. And like every other time, I think that this will be the last one, that I’m going to cancel after this box. And every time, after I open the box, I’m pleasantly surprised at the interesting things sent to me. This time was no exception.

Three full-sized products and four samples – awesome!

Teez Trend Cosmetics Read My Lips Lipstick in Roulette Red, 2 g, $28.94

This long-lasting lipstick combines the power of highly-pigmented coverage and a unique satin, matte finish. The lipstick’s smooth, ultra creamy texture and added coconut oil extract nourishes and hydrates the lips, with colour that lasts for up to 8 hours.

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Swatches of Roulette Red and the Starlooks Luxe Longwear Eye Liner Pen.

I haven’t really used this lipstick too much. It’s a smidge too brown for my liking and I seem to be on a nude lip kick right now.

Starlooks Luxe Longwear Eye Liner Pen, 10 mL, $19

This liner is a staple product for every makeup lover, this felt tipped pen makes it impeccably easy to create flawless eye lines of any variety. Applies smoothly, dries quickly, and lasts all day (or night) long. 

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This has becoming my go-to, favourite liner. I like that it’s got a solid, felt-tipped pen-type applicator which makes lining my eyes super easy and fast. I also get perfect lines, everytime.

The FaceShop Character Mask, $4 

Wash face. Pull out the mask and carefully place it on the face. Remove after 10-15 minutes and tap lightly to absorb the remaining essence into the skin. 

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While this worked really well, I looked absolutely ridiculous while wearing it. Even more ridiculous than regular paper masks look. I can’t imagine anyone who would like to look like a barnyard animal while they did their beauty routine. Highly unlikely I will buy this in the future.

Benefit Cosmetics, they’re real tinted primer, 3g, value $10.33

Dramatically boost length and separation with a high performing gel formula, which is water-resistant, and keep the lashes in great condition with the provitamin B5.

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I don’t really understand this product. It’s like brown mascara… to go under other mascara, right? I wore it one day just to try it (and of course, forgot to take pictures) and it had a nice, light brown tint to it that gave me a natural, I-woke-up-like-this look. I’m still grasping the point to this though. One day I will wear it under the other mascara and let you know if it makes a big difference.

Benefit Cosmetics, roller lash mascara, 3g, value $10.33

It’s a roller for lashes! The eye-opening Hook ‘n’ Roll brush grabs, separates, lifts and curls… which the instant curve-setting formula holds for 12 hours. Gently wiggle the wand from base of lashes to tip. Repeat across your lash line, making sure to catch every lash.

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I had bought into the hype about this and was wanting to love it. And while it’s nice, I don’t think it’s all that. I’ll use up the sample but I prolly won’t buy it in the future.

Benefit Cosmetics, they’re real! mascara, 3g, value $10.33

Benefit’s #1 nascar lifts, curls and lengthens for lashes beyond belief! Jet Black, glossy and long wearing.

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I appreciate this mascara way more than RollerLash. I especially love the little porcupine spikes at the edge helping to get all the smaller  lashes at either end of my eye – as long I don’t poke myself. lol. I know this sample shows up in all the boxes and is easier to get than just about any other sample but I still enjoyed receiving it and count it as a win.

Benefit Cosmetics, they’re real! remover, 3g, value $1.38

Dip a clean cotton swab in they’re real! remover to instantly fix any eye makeup mistakes.

Ever since I started using Julep’s Bare Faced Oil, I haven’t felt the need to use eye makeup remover. However, this remover by Benefit helped me out of a few tough spots this week when I didn’t want to rub oil all over my eye and either start my makeup over again or re-wash my face. I think this will go on my list to purchase in the future.

So, there you have it, another Luxe Box. The value of products was $84.31 and while the value of the Benefit deluxe samples are high, I used the cost of full sized products to find the value of the samples so they should be fairly accurate. I paid $29 (including taxes) so the quality of the box is still there for me. I’m also please that despite the decline in the Canadian dollar, there has not been a decline in products/value for this box.

Thoughts? I’d love to hear them. Happy Shopping!

Julep It’s Balm First Impression

Yes, another video. I am so excited to share this one with you, it’s my best video yet!

Today I am talking about the new It’s Balm Lip Crayon colours from Julep (and yes, I do have a small rant about the product’s name change).

The lip crayons reminded me a lot of other lip balms. You had to do a few swipes to get some decent colour payoff and needed to be reapplied in an hour or two. On the flip side, I felt comfortable applying without a mirror since I wasn’t concerned with getting it all over my face like I am with some lipsticks. The smell is pleasant, kind of a sweet, vanilla-cake smell but can get a little cloying after awhile.

From top to bottom, left to right: Apricot Nude, Dusty Orchid, Nectar Pink and Ripe Raspberry.

Overall, I like this product. Now that I’ve tried a few more colours, I would probably be willing to try more. I mention in the video how much I hate Aurora Pink creme and that has deterred me from trying more, which really isn’t fair since the colour just simply doesn’t go with my skin tone, no other reason.

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Photo Credit: Julep.com

For those of you who are already Julep Mavens, they’ve release the sneak peek of the February Maven box and this month, they are featuring the Julep Eyeshadow 101. Watch my review of that beauty product here.

Have you tried It’s Balm? Does this review make you want to add an It’s Balm onto your next Julep box? I’d love to hear your thoughts. If you’d like to sign up for Julep, feel free to use my referral code here.

Happy Shopping!

Cheeks and Contouring

Hey folks, so I feel like vlogging is my new calling. I have been having a hard time sitting in front of the computer and writing posts and editing pictures. But on Saturdays (when the light is good), I am raring to put together some new videos. And I’m even enjoying editing videos and posting them on YouTube. Let’s hope I keep this enthusiasm up and have many more videos for you to enjoy.

Today I am talking about contouring and blush using my Tarte Light of the Party Palette. I keep just linking it back to Temptalia’s website where she gives it a barely passing grade but I LOVE THIS PALETTE. I almost feel bad for using it because it’s sold out and you can’t go get one but clearly I’m not feeling bad enough to stop using it. 😉

Anyways, I had been contouring using powder before I bought this palette but this was the clincher for me. I don’t do it every day but definitely when I have more time or just want to feel more special about my makeup that day.

I hope you enjoyed that short tutorial. Please leave me a comment and let me know what you thought. Happy Shopping!

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Products Used:

Tarte Light of the Party Palette

MAC Brush 168

Julep Blush brush

 

5 Minute Face #2

Two videos in two weeks! I am feeling like a rockstar! Anyways, enough patting myself on the back, on to the video

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Products used:

Sephora Perfecting Ultra-Smoothing Primer

Tarte Light at the Party Palette

Eyeko Eyebrow Gel [no longer available]

MAC brush: 214 Short Shader brush

L’Oreal Infallible® The Super Slim by Infallible Black eyeliner

Buxom Lash Mascara

MAC Creamsheen Lipstick in Without Your Love from the Ellie Goulding collection

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer in Fair

5 Minute Face #1

Hey folks! Sorry it’s been so long since I wrote a post. My job-that-pays-the-bills was extremely busy during December and between that and Christmas shopping, the birthday parties, the Christmas parties and the quick trip to Ottawa, the month flew by very quickly.

Anyways, welcome to my new series: Five Minutes Faces. I hope you enjoy #1 and I would love to hear any ideas for more five minute faces or any tips you have for getting out the door quickly in the morning.

Happy Shopping!

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Products used in Video (in order they appear):

Sephora Perfecting Ultra-Smoothing Primer

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion in Original

Eyeko Eyebrow Gel [no longer available]

Maybelline Brights Palette

Julep Eyeshadow Brush

Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper

MAC 242 shader brush

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer in Fair

Tarte Light at the Party Palette: Blush in Amazed

MAC Cremesheen in Peach Blossom

Five items for 30-something skin

My skin care regime has never been overly involved. I’m the type of person who hates washing their face or removing their makeup. Once I’m ready for bed, I’m ready for bed and not too much is gonna get in the way of my head hitting the pillow.

But over the years my skin care routine has evolved. Partially because I’m more vain and partially because I’m buying more and more expensive sheets and it’s hard to get the mascara out of my pillowcases.

So here’s a list of my five essential things for my skin care routine that I do now in my 30s that I didn’t do in my 20s.

1. Drink lots of water

Sadly this is only something I’ve started doing in the last five-ish years. And it took me forever to train myself to like water and then to notice the signals my body was giving me when I was thirsty. So many people either mix that signal up with hunger or they drown it in soda or coffee, neither which gives your body and your skin what it really needs. So buy a Nalgene or a S’well and start sipping.

 

2. Moisturize

Now that you’re working on hydrating your skin from the inside,  it’s time to start hydrating it from the outside. There’s lots of talk about anti-aging products and whether or not they work or if they are just all hype. I feel that they are mostly just extremely dense moisturizers to apply morning and night. If you haven’t gotten the hint yet, hydration is key to younger-looking skin. 🙂 Currently I am loving Biotherm AquaSource Deep Serum but I’ve been trying Julep Restorative Facial Milk and I’m liking it too.

3. Face oil

The latest skin care rage is Korean beauty and I have fallen in love with face oil. I was a huge skeptic that oil could make my skin lovely and break-out free. Rebekah from Lipstick and Lullabies sold me on the Julep Bare Face oil. You gotta try it, she told me, it melts makeup off your face. Well, for someone who hates removing their makeup, that sounds amazing. Julep recommends using their Bare Face Oil with their Konjac sponge and I agree, I never, never enjoyed washing my face so much before.

4. Exfoliate

Perhaps the only downside to washing my face with oil is that I feel a build up after about a week. I searched around until I found Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub at Sephora. Read all about my experience here. (Spoiler alert: I love it!)

 

5. Sunscreen

I have been using sunscreen for several years now but I felt it was important to add to this list. I would say a minimum of SPF 30 for your face is important, even in the winter. Shiseido did a promotion this summer at Sephora and gave away these UV bracelets that turned blue when you were outside in UV rays and you’d be surprised that it turns blue fairly quickly even when it’s cloudy in November. If you are only looking to do one thing on this list, I would say sunscreen should be it.

 

What are your tips for keeping your skin healthy? Happy Shopping!

Video: Jamberry nail wrap application and Jamberry special sale

Hey folks! It seems I am unable to get a post up on Monday, even when the post totally relates to manicures. lol Let me blame the busyness of work and the federal election.

Today I’m excited to share another video with you about my tips and tricks for applying Jamberry nail wraps to help you get the most out of your manicure.

A couple of oopsies happened while i was taping. One, my husband comes in at some point and says good night. And the second is I say you can get four manicures out of one package of nails wraps. That is incorrect, I meant two, you can get two manicures out of one package of nail wraps.

I did mention in the video that I would link to the pattern of nail wraps I’m using but unfortunately they must’ve been seasonal stock as I can’t find them on the website.

I also have a special promotion for you. My friend Tara, who is a Jamberry consultant has generously offered a free half sheet of nail wraps with any Jamberry purchase before Monday, November 16th. First of all, click on this link to take you to the TLC Shopping’s Awesome Jamberry Party page. Next, click on the button that says, “Shop for this Party.” From there, fill your cart with all the gorgeous wraps you can handle and check out. Wraps will be mailed to you once you place your order, you don’t need to wait for the party to end. Tara will be mailing your half sheet separately, so watch for a second envelope to come in the mail.

Which wraps are you lusting after? Check out my top picks from the Jamberry Fall 2015 catalogue to help you make up your mind. Happy Shopping!

Note: I did not receive the wraps shown in the video as a promotional item. However, I will get “hostess credit” towards more Jamberry wraps with every purchase through this online party. 

First Impression Julep Eyeshadow 101

Hey folks, did everyone have a nice Thanksgiving? Mine was great. I’m one of the few people I know who actually looks forward to turkey and then all the turkey leftovers. Daughter Dearest also had a great time playing with Cousins although listening to four girls under 10 laugh and bicker and fight drives Grandma Dee and I a little crazy.

Today I’m going to bring you a video giving you my first impression of the new eyeshadow sticks by Julep called Eyeshadow 101. While this isn’t the first video I’ve done, this is the first one I’ve featured on my blog for reasons that will become clear in the coming weeks.

So, here’s the Julep blog post picture I reference in the video that shows the colours from lightest to darkest.

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Photo credit: Julep.com

And here’s more pictures of the look:

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On my face, I’m also wearing:

Benefit The POREfessional

Anastasia Beverley Hills Dipbrow Pomade in Taupe

tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes Precision Longwear Eyeliner in Black

So Susan Universal Blush

Buxom Lash Mascara in Black

In the video, I also talk about Benefit’s Watt’s Up Cream to Powder Highlighter.

So, what do you think of Eyeshadow 101? Did this make you want to try it? Or convince you it’s not the product for you? If you’d like to sign up for Julep, I’d love for you to use my referral link here. Happy Shopping!

Fall Luxe Box 2015

It’s Luxe Box time again! I was considering cancelling this subscription and saving some money but both the products and the value of the box is still great so I think I’m going to continue with it for awhile. Here’s what I received this month:

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Ofra Universal Eyebrow Pencil, 1.13 g, value $13

Water resistant pencil suitable for the most sensitive eye area. It is the perfect solution for your eyebrows and is call Universal Eyebrow Pencil for a reason as it is one colour to suit all skin tones. It is soft enough and will make it easy for you to create a perfect shape.

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This eyebrow pencil has a great gel-like formula and helps brows stay in place while filling them in. I really like it. That being said, it is a shade or two too dark for me. I think I’ll end up giving it to my mom. I checked their website to see if they sold any more colours. They don’t…  Anyways, while this product didn’t work out for me, I would be willing to try more of their makeup products in future.

So Susan Rose Quartet Lip and Cheek Cream, 4 g, value $12

A richly-pigmented, hydrating lip and cheek pomade that delivers 12 hours of continuous wear with dryness, creasing or smudging. 

I’ve gotten other So Susan products that I totally love but I have a hard time believing I am going to use this. The brush looks cheesy, the colours look over-saturated and nothing like anything I would put on my cheeks. My lips are still super dry and not accepting anything except Vaseline and Blistex so I can’t try them out on there. This is going in my give away pile.

Eyeko Hydrogel Eye Patch,  3g, value $4.50

Our botanically infused eye patches instantly brighten and revive eyes for a wide-awake look. Concentrated anti-stress and anti-fatigue ingredients treat the delicate eye area visibly diminishing dark shadows and puffiness leaving skin hydrated and firm. 

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My daughter laughed her head off when she saw me walking around the house like this. While I haven’t really noticed any difference in the moisture in my under eye area, this was kind of fun. This also might be a great product for when you have a fever or a hangover.

OSIS+ Session Label Dust It Flex Fragranced Mattifying Powder, 10g, value $25

The first mattifying frangranced powder for smashing texture and incredible root volume with lava rock for flexible hold and grip that lasts non-stop. 

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I love dry shampoo. I’ve probably mentioned that once or six times. I got this one in my Flare box last year and loved it. I am excited to get it again.

Delectable Ultra Nourishing Hand Cream, 60 mL, value $7

This miracle material hand cream is packed frill of goodness with shea butter, coconut oil and aloe vera, to smooth, nourish and rejuvenate hands and cuticles. Rich and never greasy, this beautiful blend leaves your hands super smooth, superbly soft and perfectly pretty.

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This hand lotion was greasy when I initially put it on. But it absorbed quickly and then my hands were soft for awhile after. The smell is nice and the sample is a half decent size. I think I will take this to work for use at my desk.

pur~delicate gentle soy milk cleanser and makeup remover, 30 mL, value $6.55

A mild soap-free, on-foaming cleanser that respects the delicate nature of your skin. Leaves your face touchable and silky soft, without a trace of impurity. 

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I used this to take off my makeup and it was fine. I mean, it did what is was supposed to do but not in a way that made me excited about it. I can’t see myself purchasing this again.

Ciate London Nail Lacquer in Couture Noir, 13.5 mL, value $15

The formula is amazingly pigmented, long lasting and available in a range of finishes whilst formulated to be easy to apply.

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Ciate Couture Noir over Julep Cally

I haven’t every tried Ciate before but I was very impressed with the shine in this glitter topper. It didn’t really need a coat of Seche Vite but I needed the manicure to last three days for sure, so I added one anyways. The price tag for Ciate polish is a little steep but I will probably pick up another colour in the future.

Not on the card but also included was the Tresemme Perfectly Undone Wave Creation Sea Foam. I don’t have curly hair anymore but I will try this when I’ve left my hair to dry overnight and I have major bedhead.

This quarter’s box had five full sized products and three samples and was worth $85. If you are thinking about signing up for Luxe Box, I’d love if you would use my referral link here. Try any of these products? Which is your favourite? Happy Shopping!

Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub Review

If you only have time to read the first paragraph of this post, I can boil down this review into two words: AH-MAZING!

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I love a good face scrub. Not the pansy ones with microbeads made for daily exfoliation. A hard core scrub with warnings on the label about using it more than a couple of times per week! So the Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub is exactly what I was looking for.

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According to Sephora’s website:

What it is:
Nothing heightens the skin’s natural metabolic processes better than this densely textured, smooth gliding, and terrifically energizing face scrub. Activated with water, it foams up to scour away dead, tired skin cells, while literally vacuuming up impurities. Excellent for all skin types.

What it is formulated WITHOUT:
– Parabens
– Sulfates
– Phthalates

They didn’t have a sampler open at Sephora when I went to buy the scrub. I was concerned about not liking it but the sales girl had me smell some other Ole Henriksen products, assuring me it was mildly scented. She was wrong. So wrong. It smells (wonderfully) of cherries or cherry blossoms. The scent is not overwhelming but calling it a mild scent is optimistic at best. Luckily, I love the scent so that was not an issue for me.

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At the size of 1.7oz, this container seems small but you only need a nickel size dollop to generously cover your face. At this rate, and the fact that I only use it once per week, this scrub is likely to last me forever. Or at least until I’m sick of it and want to try something else.

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I probably spend 1 – 3 minutes rubbing it all over my face and then a couple of minutes rinsing it off. Afterwards, my skin feels amazingly butter-smooth. I dry it off and layer Biotherm AquaSource Deep Serum over it to help lock in moisture.

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Yes, my skin is a tiny bit red after using this but since I moisturize well and only exfoliate before bedtime, my skin has a chance to breathe afterwards and I haven’t had an problems.

Overall, I would highly recommend the Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub for anyone wanting a deep, weekly exfoliation.

What are your favourite skin products? Happy Shopping!