Sunday, May 22, 2016

Stila Perfect Me Perfect Hue Eye & Cheek Palette (Light/Medium) - Review, Swatches, Demo

If you are into makeup, you likely have more neutral eyeshadow palettes than you can possibly use up in your entire life. However, one important makeup product missing from my collection is a great eye AND cheek palette! Stila introduced the Perfect Me Perfect Hue Eye & Cheek Palette ($51) for Summer 2016 and I'm obsessed!

The palette contains 5 eyeshadow shades and 2 blush shades for a total of 14g of product. There are four palettes in total and they are each created based on a skin tone! 

Packaging: Stila has gone through a couple phases of packaging changes, but they've settled on this beautiful champagne color scheme for all their products now. It's very elegant although difficult for bloggers to photograph! The palette is housed in a heavy duty plastic case with a full size mirror inside and the palette closes with a very satisfying click. 

Here you can see, each of the shades is given a specific purpose. This can help beginners with placing the product and provides a guideline for a no thinking needed flawless face. The base, crease and liner shades are mattes. The lid shade is a shimmer and the highlighter is a matte with glitter. The two blush shades are both of a satin finish. 

I love Ambitious so much as it's the perfect one shadow shade. The blush on the bottom right is also exactly my jam! My cheeks are naturally red so I always prefer a blush that's deeper in color and can double as a contour and I'm so in love with Angelic!

Formulation: The formula of all of the shades are A+! Every shade was smooth, pigmented, easy to blend, and provides true to pan color. Although the shades are not the most unique, you'll be wanting to reach for these over and over again. 

Here is the eye look I created by following their instructions!

1) Apply base all over the lid.
2) Sweep the lid shade just above the crease
3) Use the crease shade just in the outer corner
4) Connect the top and bottom lashlines with the liner shade. Smudge it out with the crease shade.

The crease shade looks very red in the pan and swatch but it is such a perfect match for my skin when applied! It creates the most natural contours even though I don't a traditional crease. I can just imagine how good it would look if you had a deeper eye socket!

On a day to day basis, I would just use the lid shade and then the liner shade but skip all the other steps! To create a more dramatic look, I would sweep the liner shade all across the lid and then gradually blend out with lighter shades.

To finish off the look I used:
-Stila Poreless Putty Perfector with the Stila Wonder Brush
-Stila Got Inked Cushion Eye Liner in Smoky Quartz Ink

I can see this palette being a staple in any beginner's bag! The quality of every shade is amazing and you can tell a lot of thought went into creating the perfect combination. Although the color is not very unique, it is meant to be an easy to use palette that creates the perfect natural flawless look.

For us beauty lovers, I think this is an absolute essential as well! I know the shades look very standard, but quality over quantity or trend or uniqueness in this case. If I were to travel, I would definitely grab this as it includes my eye AND cheek needs! Or if you are the type of person that likes to touch up, this would find a comfortable spot in your purse or desk. I highly highly recommend this palette!

On a side note, the Stila Stay All Day foundation has been repackaged! It now comes in a tube that you press down and the product dispenses up! Super cool. I was sent the shade Fair so unfortunately it was too light for me to test. 

What are your favorite Stila products? How many neutral eye shadow palettes do you have?

 Available at Shoppers Drug Mart, Murale and starting May 2016 

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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Vichy Ideal Soleil Review- Ultra Fluid SPF30 & Double Usage After Sun

The sun is out and it's time to protect our skins! One of my beauty goals of 2016 is to wear more sunscreen and I think I finally found a face sunscreen that I like! Vichy has an amazing sunscreen selection in the Ideal Soleil line up and they also recently introduced an after sun care that will help extend your tan!

The Ideal Soleil collection was made to provide the most pleasant textures. We probably all have experienced super tacky, greasy, and smelly sunscreen in our childhood. It's a good thing that sunscreens have come a long way since then!

I found this chart from Vichy to be very informative about the UV rays that you can be exposed to. The filter used in Ideal Soleil products is called Mexoral-XL-SX and provides protection against both UVA and UVB rays. Each product is also infused with Vichy Thermal Water to help sooth the skin!

The sunscreen I've been wearing everyday this week is the Vichy Ultra Light Fluid in SPF 30 ($25.95) for the face. True to it's name, it is a very light, liquidy product perfect for applying on a daily basis. It dries pretty quickly and does not leave a greasy finish at all! I actually find it a bit too mattifying but I have very dry skin!

When first applied, it looks like it would have a white cast but it is quickly absorbed. The amount shown in the photo is usually how much I would use for both cheeks, then I would take another of that amount for my forehead and nose. Once it's patted in, it's virtually unnoticeable, see photo below. I think this product would be great to layer under your normal makeup as it's so light and thin.

I had a bit of an issue with flaking in the first few days and I think it's related to the moisturizer I used the night before. It's a thicker cream and I feel like it mixes with the sunscreen and curds. When I switched to using a facial oil as a night time moisturizer, I didn't experience any flaking!

New to Vichy is this Double Usage After Sun Care ($29.95) which hydrates the skin to provide for a radiant tan! I just learned that hydrated skin is a parameter to extending your tan and this product contains shea butter, four types of oils and vitamin E. The product claims to sooth after sun exposure, nourish the skin, and beautify and extend the tan! It can be used in the shower or on dry skin.

It's still early in the season so I haven't had a "tanning" session yet. I tried this out in the shower and on dry skin to see how it would perform. The product is very liquidy and I rubbed it into my arms and legs. After I rinsed off, I noticed there is an oily film similar to a sugar scrub. It definitely left my skin looking more "radiant" and nourished, but I didn't really like the oily feeling. I wouldn't recommend putting this on dry skin as it left my hands feeling very greasy. I'm not sold on this yet but I'll have to give it another shot when I get too much sun this summer. One thing I did like is the scent, it transports me to a beach with palm trees and ocean sprays. 

How's your sunscreen game? Are you a daily applier or a sun burnt regreter? 

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Sunday, May 15, 2016

THEFACESHOP Hwansaenggo Escargot Golden Firming Line- New Skincare

Koreans skincare is always leading the way in terms of new ingredients and technology to keep skin young, even, and glowing. Recently, The Face Shop introduced the Hwansaenggo Escargot line featuring snail mucus and 24K gold as the main ingredients! Sounds crazy? I was very intrigued and wanted to see if it lived up to the claim of bringing life, youthfulness, and a gilded glow back into dull skin.

This collection is much more intricately packaged than some of other The Face Shop collections. This luxurious collection contains products ranging from $30-$75. Snail mucus is known for being very moisturizing and nourishing and is a favorite in many Korean skincare products. I didn't know this before but 24K gold has detoxifying and brightening properties!

Of course as an auditor, I can't just take it at face value so I did a bit of research on these two ingredients. It seems that most articles agree that snail mucus is nourishing and stimulates cell regeneration. You can take a read here and here for some lifestyle/news articles. And it also seems a common theme that gold is known to be anti-inflammatory and gives a brightening effect in skincare!

Hwansaenggo Escargot Eye Cream - $75 (40mL)

I haven't been using eye cream for about a year but I was very excited to add this to my routine. I never noticed how I neglect to moisturize right underneath my eyes when I'm just putting on face cream. In addition to escargot and 24K gold, this product contains black ginseng and is meant to regenerate the skin and give elasticity and resilience.

The cream is quite thick and has a slight mucousy texture. It was very comfortable to apply and felt extremely nourishing and comfortable. I didn't notice any results from about a month's use (3 times weekly) but I did enjoy the entire experience and I feel like I'm taking preventative measures!

This is the carton for the eye cream and I was very pleasantly surprised that snail secretion filtrate was the first ingredient! Usually I find brands advertise the "key" ingredient and it's somewhere way down in the bottom.

Hwansaenggo Escargot Cream - $69 (50mL)

The cream is housed in a beautiful packaging that is a treat to display on the vanity. The top has a very ornate design and the bottle feels hefty and luxurious. The Face Shop describes this as a thick formula but I found the cream only medium weight in texture. It is absorbed very easily and contains macadmaia oil, shea butter and panthenol in addition to snail mucus and 24K gold.

After the first time I used this, I noticed an immediate difference! I had some bumpiness on my skin right under my lip and on my forehead. My skin felt so smooth after I used this for the first night!! I love when I can feel a difference right away and something in this cream just calms my skin and smooths everything out.

However, I have very dry skin so I actually found this not hydrating enough. I had to add in hydrating serums as my skin felt smooth but dry. If you have normal or even just slightly dry skin, this would work really well!

Overall I was very impressed by the cream and the effect it made on my skin! The eye cream was very nice to use but I didn't notice a visible difference. If you are looking for an effective luxurious skincare to pamper yourself, definitely check this collection out. To round out the collection there is a cleansing foam, toner, serum, emulsion, eye mask and face mask!

The Hwansaenggo line is available in stores throughout Canada and online at

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Thursday, May 12, 2016

NYC Get it All Collection- Makeup Look and Review


It has been a while since I did a look using NYC products! I thought I'd put the new NYC Get it All Collection foundation and lipstick to the test for this simple but polished look! For some throwback, here was a good one when I tried to create a look inspired by Demi Lovato.

The new Get it All collection wants to make sure you do not compromise your makeup needs and includes a collection of foundation, lipstick, and mascara. 

NYC Get it All Foundation - $5.99 available in 5 shades

First up, we have a stick foundation that is perfect for girls on the go. I personally haven't used a stick foundation in ages and was pretty skeptical especially with my dry skin. This foundation gives a medium coverage and can easily be buildable. I swiped this diagonally across my cheeks and found using a wet sponge the best application technique!

The product was smooth although not super creamy. Where you swipe on the product is mainly where the coverage will go. 

Left: 202 Honey Beige Rights: 101 Nude

What I really like is the weightless feel on the face. Once I've applied the product there is no tackiness or setting time. My face feels natural and there is no scent to the product, The wear time is quite good, 8+ hours for me. The finish is a demi-matte, but I prefer more of a dewy look on a day to day basis. I think this would be better for someone with oily skin that wants a smooth matte look. For me, I'd toss this into my purse to touch up after the gym or pool as the stick format is so convenient. 

Left: 202 Honey Beige Rights: 101 Nude

The two shades are very similar. Honey Beige has more of a yellow undertone and Nude has a pink undertone. Something to note is that Honey Beige is the darkest shade in the collection. I'm a little bit confused with that as it's barely even in the medium skin tone range. If you have lighter skin and have trouble finding fair shades at the drugstore, you may be in luck! But NYC should really expand the range to include deeper skin tones.

Before and After wearing 202 Honey Beige

I had some redness in the cheeks before and the foundation eliminated the redness and created a smooth matte canvas. 

NYC Get it All Lip Color - $5.99 available in 12 shades

Next we have four shades from the new Lip Colors which claims to be non-drying and wear for four hours in a single stroke. From the first swatch, these colors definitely pack a punch. Each of these is extremely pigmented and even leaves a bit of a stain.

The formula is smooth but again not creamy. There's quite a bit of "grip" as I apply this on my lips. I guess this "grip" is what helps it's wear time. I do find these last a long time but the color also transfers easily to cups, napkins etc. since it's so pigmented. 

Left to right: 600 TerrifiCORAL, 300 ImpREDssive, 400 ExtraordiBERRY, 200 PINKtastic

The packaging on these is a step up from the traditional Expert Last lipsticks. The tub is skinnier and taller. The lipstick also twists all the way down so the cap won't nick the product. I also really like that the bottom of each of these is color coordinated to the product.

I wouldn't say these are the most comfortable on the lips. I don't find them drying by any means but the "grip" also doesn't make it feel hydrating. When compared to the Expert Last lipsticks, I think these have more color pay off but the value isn't as good as the Expert Last lipsticks are only $1.99 each!

Left to right: 600 TerrifiCORAL, 300 ImpREDssive, 400 ExtraordiBERRY, 200 PINKtastic

All of the colors were quite flattering on me but none were that unique! If you are looking for a super pigmented lipstick from the drugstore, give these a try! If you are just looking for a quality inexpensive lipstick, give the NYC Expert Last lipsticks a try instead!

Here I am wearing 300 ImpREDssive. Overall the two products were pretty good but not the best I've tried from NYC. The foundation will be a life saver if I need to pack it for travel but not something I would reach for on a daily basis. The lipsticks are surprisingly pigmented but again probably not something I would wear on a daily basis. 

What products from NYC have you tried recently?

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Tuesday, May 10, 2016

CLEAN Reserve Perfume Collection- Sueded Oud

I fell in love with Clean perfume when I picked up a rollerball trio a couple of Black Friday's ago. The scents are meant to be layered and quite simply, smell "clean". One of my favorites is White Woods which smells of vanilla and sandalwood. 

They recently released a reserve line focusing on some very special initiatives I'm excited to share! From top to bottom, the team at Clean ensured the final product is sustainable and is helping out communities in need. All of the fragrances are manufactured in a facility using 100% solar energy! The packaging material are all recyclable or compostable. The aim is to create a luxurious collection with an eco-conscious focus.

Each of the full size bottles retails for $125CAD and contains 100mL of product. It is more expensive than their original collection but not out of line with other designer perfumes. The philsophy of Clean perfume is that each scent can be worn on its own or personalized by lending with another scent.

"Blended with raw, sustainable ingredients and luxurious craftsmanship, this new CLEAN collection provides a diverse and unique fragrance experience, for existing CLEAN users and new discerning tastes. Similar to the farm to table food trend, CLEAN Reserve is a farm to bottle collection with sustainable ingredients all housed in a 100% recyclable glass bottle. "

The sustainable ingredient in this scent is "Bushman Candle" which is harvested by the Himbas tribe. The bark is sold to sell for fragrance extraction and this helps to preserve the traditional lifestyle of the tribe. 

Packaging: The perfume comes bottled in a square glass casing with a wooden cork top. It is simply sleek and "clean" (how many times can I use that word).  The label displays the scent, type, and family of scent. The cork is made of wood from certified sustainable managed forests!

Scent: There are 9 scents in total in the collection. The inspiration for each fragrance was based on an imagery versus a particular note. For Sueded Oud, the vision of the perfume inspired by our deepest instinct to explore and discover our individual destinies. This sounds pretty wishy washy but some other ones were very descriptive: For example Blonde Rose is inspired by an escape to a warm bubble bath infused with rose petals and a day dream.

Sueded Oud smells sweet and dark at the same time. It is very warm and contains quite a bit of musk. I think it can be rather unisex but I've been really enjoying it even in the summer time.

Longevity: This scent had really good staying power! I can smell the base layer even 8 hours after spraying. It is definitely a woody scent and can easily be unisex. I'm usually one to go for fruity and light scents but I really enjoyed this. It makes me feel sexy and mysterious and I'd definitely spray this on a night out!

I've never smelled oud before in another perfume so I did a bit of research and it's apparently one of the most expensive perfume ingredients in the world! The oil is derived from the tropical agar tree, but only when it is infected by a mould. The tree then reacts by producing a dense, dark and fragrant resin to protect itself and it is the resin-embedded heartwood of the tree that is the source of oud! Sounds pretty fancy! 

If you can't decide on a scent, there are a few travel sets you can test out the scents. The Discovery Layering set has nine of the scents in 1.5mL plastic tubes and retails for $29. Or the Travel Spray Set features six of the scents in 5mL glass bottles for $60.

Overall I love the aesthetics of the packaging, the eco-consciousness of the entire product and the additive scent. Make sure you give these a sniff!

The Clean Reserve collection is exclusively available at Sephora and