Friday, March 30, 2012

Depotting your NYX Trio Eyeshadows

Hola my beauty lovin' babes!

This blog post is going to be up a little late today because it's based on a project I've been working all morning on.

I received my first Z-palette from Makeup Geek in the mail today! I purchased a large Z-palette in leopard print (ooh la la!) I was thoroughly impressed with my first shipment from I placed my order on March 19th, and received the shipping confirmation on March 20th. My package showed up on March 30th, via First Class Mail International Parcel. It was carefully packed in a cardboard box filled with pink packing peanuts - the palette was individually wrapped in a protective plastic bag, and further wrapped in bubble wrap. Included were 20 metal adhesive disks to adhere to the bottom of your depotted shadows.

I purchased this palette with a depotting spree in mind. I was tired of keeping my NYX trios hidden in the back of a drawer. I wanted them to be in a more convenient and accessible format so that I would actually use them. I'd watched a few different videos on how to depot eyeshadows, with and without heat. I determined that the heat method would be best suited for me. So I'm going to walk you guys through my journey!! Buckle yourselves in for a fun Friday ride!

What you need:
- A towel
- A paring knife
- Wax paper
- Rubbing alcohol
- Q-tips, cotton pads or balls
- A straightener/flat iron
- Magnets
- Labels
- Pen
- Empty palette

Here are a couple of video recommendations if you're looking into depotting your own eyeshadows.
Hello Vanilla Snow:
EnKore Makeup:

I started by extracting the plastic lining out of the trios. You have to (carefully) wedge a paring knife into the corner, and pop the four clasps inside. If you're gentle and patient, you won't have a problem and the tray will come out with a little persistence and no nicked shadows.

After I had repeated this step on all of my trios, I heated up my straightener to 420 degrees. 

These definitely weren't all of my trios - I was about halfway done here :)

I folded a single sheet of wax paper in half, and gently placed it on the bottom plate. I set the eyeshadow tray on the hot plate (on top of the wax paper) and let it sit there for about a minute. I would check it periodically to make sure it wasn't over-melting, burning, or attaching itself to the wax paper. Sometimes it would take more or less time - the key is to keep checking. 

When you can see a slight change in the bottom of the tray (sweating of the plastic, buckling, etc.) you know it's ready. Turn the tray bottom-side-up overtop of a towel. Use the knife to gently push on the back of the plastic to push through the soft plastic and push the eyeshadow pan out of the case. 

Let it fall upside down on top of the towel and let it sit for a while to cool down - trust me, these things are HOT.

After the pans cool down, you will need rubbing alcohol and Q-tips and/or cotton pads or balls. Dip them into the rubbing alcohol and starting working at the glue on the back of the pans. Rub in circular motions to gently lift and work the glue off the back. This is the most time-consuming part of the entire process. You've been warned!!!

Next you need to adhere magnets and label your eyeshadows. Labelling your eyeshadows is key. You don't want to forget which is which, so after adhering the magnets, you can apply a label with the eyeshadow name attached on the very bottom. Mine don't have labels on the bottom of them yet, but I have a list of where each shadow is in my palette and what their names are, so I don't have pictures of this step.

And voila! Here's the finished product!!

And that's all there is to it. I apologize that the picture quality is less than stellar. I had to take these pictures with my (new) phone, and the quality isn't as great as my last phone... But, que sera sera. Some crappy pictures are better than no pictures, eh? :)

Anyways, I hope everyone enjoyed! I'm looking forward to using my new palette, and you can bet your bottom dollar a review on my new Z-palette will be coming soon!!

In the meantime, have a great weekend!!

Have any of you tried the Z-palettes? What do you think of them?

Thursday, March 29, 2012

TRESemme Fresh Start Volumizing Dry Shampoo

My apologies for the off-again-on-again posts, everyone. School's been crazylicious, and I haven't been able to keep my head above the raging tides. Here's a review to keep you comfortable for a little while though!!

You can purchase this product anywhere TRESemme products are sold, for about $4-$6 CDN a bottle. Each bottle contains 5.7 oz (161 g) of dry shampoo-p :)

Photo credit:
There are now three different formulas available in the dry shampoo collection - a volumizing formula (for fine/oily hair), a strengthening formula (for dry/prone to breakage hair), and a smoothing formula (for straight/normal hair). I personally, have only ever tried the volumizing formula. The volumizing formula is marketed to fine/oily hair-ed individuals.

TRESemme's description of this product is as follows: "transform limp, lifeless locks into healthy, full-bodied hair when you skip shampoo. The Mineral Clay and Citrus formula removes oil and odor that weighs hair down, so you can have instant salon-quality volume without a drop of water." The Volumizing Dry Shampoo contains mineral clay (which seeks out and absorbs oil, injecting hair with instant salon-gorgeous volume), and citrus extracts (eliminates odor, infusing hair with a fresh, clean scent).

This must have been the first 'drugstore' brand to come out with a dry shampoo, which everyone was so excited for. I'd never tried dry shampoo, but I was eager to try this out, especially because it was so affordable.

I usually use this on my 'off-days,' the days I don't wash my hair. Sometimes I don't need it, as my hair isn't excessively oily or limp looking. On average, I use it about once a week - sometimes more, sometimes less. I find that it's really great for 'injecting volume' into my hair though, and sometimes I'll spray some in on a day when I do wash my hair, just to get that extra lift and body.

The product comes in an aerosol can, which requires shaking before you can dispense it. It is recommended that you lift sections of hair at the roots, and spray in short bursts about 8-12 inches from the head. After finishing this routine all over your head, you're supposed to let the shampoo sit for 1-2 minutes before brushing/combing out. For best use, TRESemme recommends shaking the can in between bursts of product. 

The volumizing shampoo has a very noticeable citrus scent that lingers on the hair for several hours after applying. It's not overpowering, but it's definitely there. I'm not a huge fan of the scent - it's tolerable, but I would definitely prefer different scents with my hair products. Overall, that's not a deal breaker for me.

The product itself is... okay. I mean, I don't have anything to compare this to, but I have some gripes with it.

First of all, this can be hit-or-miss. Sometimes I spray this in my hair, and all the excess oil on my head seems to just disappear off my roots and scalp. Funtabulous!! My hair is volumized and looking fresh and clean. Other times, it creates a noticeable residue at my scalp - where the product almost clumps up on my roots creating a really gnarly, unclean look. 8 times out of 10, I get the clean, wonderful look, but I'd rather that was 10/10.

As for whether or not it actually 'sucks up' the oil off my head, I don't know. Sometimes I feel that this merely mattifies the shine on my hair/head, as opposed to actually getting rid of the oil. But other times, I feel like the oil really is gone. Meh. Crazy product!

I've had several bottles of this product that have clogged up mid-spray, and originally I didn't know what the problem was. The first time it happened, I threw out the (brand new) bottle and bought a new one. Later, I found out (via the online community) that you just need to rinse the nozzle off with some warm water, and it'll work like magic for you again. Unfortunately, this took me eons to figure out. It's also pretty inconvenient, but I suppose that is the downside of any aerosol product.

Another less-than-stellar point about this product is the fact that it is a white powder, so occasionally it won't brush into your hair and you get this white streak on your roots that makes you look like you've aged 50 years in 30 seconds. When this happens, I'm still not 100% how to fix it... I've tried using boar bristle brushes, combs, water... nothing seems to reduce the white cast, which is frustrating and annoying. Because EVERYONE can see it... and everyone points it out. A transparent powder would be a nice alternative...

The product is extremely affordable, and usually you can find it on sale - especially at WalMart and London Drugs. This is a large part of the reason I keep coming back to it - it's just so freaking affordable!!

One can of this will last me F-O-R-E-V-E-R. No joke. I rarely need to worry about replacing my bottle, even if I use this 2 to 3 times a week. Another HUGE reason I will keep repurchasing this. The can isn't that big, but a little bit goes a long way. 

For the most part, this product is decent. It's affordable and does what it's supposed to do. Is it the world's best dry shampoo? I highly doubt that. Could other drugstore brands create the world's best dry shampoo? Absolutely. It just wasn't TRESemme.

I'd be interested in trying the other versions of this dry shampoo, I'm just too chicken to pick up a bottle and have it do weird things to my hair, when I've got such a 'good' thing going with the volumizing verison.

For now, I will keep repurchasing, until I feel like trying something new. I like the way this treats my wallet, and while there are some little things here and there that I don't appreciate about it, I will get over them and keep using it, because I don't want to wash my hair every day :)

Overall 3 out of 5 stars.
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What do you think of the TRESemme dry shampoos?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Cetaphil Barrier Cream

I purchased this 85 g tube from my local London Drugs for $12.99 CDN. Ouch.

Cetaphil Barrier Cream

Cetaphil Barrier Cream is described as "an intense, non-greasy cream formulated to moisturize and protect chronic dry, cracked skin." It contains shea butter (locks in moisture for softer skin with no greasy residue), dimethicone and glycerin (promote moisturization and prevent dryness) to provide extra protection in a non-irritating formula for chronic dry skin associated with dermatoses and skin diseases like eczema and psoriasis, as well as harsh weather, and occupational conditions. The tube boasts that this product will "help restore the natural protective barrier of your skin."

The company also recommends that this is ideal for rough elbows and cracked feet, and while I haven't tried it out on those areas yet, I can only imagine how fantastic it would be at softening up those areas :)

I needed a new hand cream. My hands are really suffering this winter/spring from the volatile weather changes. I looked up some reviews online, and while there wasn't much to refer to, the response I did find was promising. 2 Makeup Alley users rated it 4.0 out of 5.

The product comes packaged in a cardboard box with all the information conveniently spaced over its surface area. The actual product packaging features a soft plastic squeeze tube, with a hard blue plastic cap and medium-sized nozzle with which to dispense product. The product stands on its lid, so it's really convenient and space-saving (if you're concerned about that). Since the cream is thicker in consistency, the tube must be squeezed for product to be extracted from the tube. It's a small enough tube that you can throw it in your purse for on-the-go application, or you could keep it on your bedside table without taking up too much room. 

I love the smell of this cream. It's supposed to be 'fragrance-free' but the natural scent that accompanies it is fantastic. It's so soft, but it's nice. I love smelling my hands after I apply it, because it's so comforting, but definitely not overpowering by any means.

This cream is incredibly luxurious. When first squeezed out of the tube, it appears very thick. The cream retains its shape, until rubbed into the hands where it becomes  smooth and quickly absorbs into the skin. The cream is not greasy, but leaves the skin incredibly hydrated and shiny. It's not by any means 'greasy,' but it does leave a thin residue over my hands that can make opening jars and the like difficult, especially immediately after application. 

The product also claims to be 'long-lasting,' which I definitely find is the case. This cream is incredibly moisturizing, and fast-absorbing, so it lasts and works for several hours (and through washes) without wearing off. Even after wearing off, the skin remains supple and soft - unlike other hand creams that can wear off and leave the skin feeling tight and stripped of moisture. Not so with this cream. 

This cream is absolutely fantastic. By far, the best hand cream I've tried to date. Also the most expensive.

While I adore this product, the cost and size are definite turn-offs. I purchased this a week or two ago, and I've already begun to reach the end of my tube. Of course, I did purchase this product to use obsessively until my hands got back to a moisturized point, but I wish it would have lasted longer.

I'm fairly certain that despite the cost, I will be re-purchasing again soon. I really love this hand cream and what it does for my hands. I really appreciate how it doesn't contain lanolin or urea, but hydrates my hands in an intensive way. My hands are at a point where they're in a constant state of comfortable hydration, and I don't have cracks or dry patches plaguing my digits. I absolutely adore how this makes my skin feel.

For the price, would I recommend it to others...?? Yes, I believe I would. Use it as often as you'd like, but go easy on it. You don't need an overly generous blob to cover the surface area of your hands - but you don't need to make a pea-size amount cover your hands either. Experiment and find out what the 'perfect' amount is for you, and use it regularly. You'll be really impressed with the condition of your hands after a few days of using this cream.

If you can find any way to purchase this product at a cheaper price, I'd say this is incredibly worth it. Shop at Wal-Mart if you can, because I find Cetaphil products infinitely more affordable there. Also, if you sign up on Cetaphil's site, you can get coupons that take the edge off of the scary price-tag. In fact, I got a coupon with my purchase of the product, so my next tube will be closer to $10 instead of the hefty $12 I originally paid.

All-in-all, this is a fantastic product. Another miracle from Cetaphil for my problem-skin.

4 out of 5 stars (one star lost for the steep price)
* * * *

What is your favorite Cetaphil product?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Miranda's Makeup & More: 500 FOLLOWER GIVEAWAY!!!

Hey everyone! Miranda is having a GIVEAWAY for her 1-year blog anniversary and for reaching 500 followers! You should definitely check it out and enter, as she's giving away some seriously amazing prizes :)

the Balm NUDE'tude palette
Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Concealer in Light
Wet N' Wild Beauty Bag (Mega Plump Mascara, Color Icon Eyeliner, Mega Slicks lip gloss, Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio in I'm Getting Sunburned)

You have until April 23 to enter!! 

Good luck!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Beauty Blogger Lovin'

So I am going to spam you guys with some of my most beloved beauty bloggers. You definitely should check these beautiful ladies out if you get a chance - they are so worth it!!

(In no particular order...)

Tracy @BeautyReflections - such a beautiful Canadian spirit. Tracy puts a witty, but honest spin on everything she posts on her blog. I love reading of her 'blush fiend tendencies' and getting a glimpse at some higher end products that she picks up and reviews. A definite must read - especially for our Canadian readers!!

Stephanie @In Her Makeup Bag - I love how Stephanie's sweet smile fills up her pictures and how her heart pours out of her blog posts. Her posts are simple, but informative and filled with a genuineness and honesty that our world so frequently forgets about.

Scrangie - Who does not love her swatches? I admit - I'm constantly stalking my feed watching for her newest posts, and I read all of them. Even if you never buy anything she reviews, you have the satisfaction of seeing some of the most beautiful and clear beauty product swatches. Go follow her now. Do it :)

Chanel @Coco Me Chanel - I love her mixture of beauty and fashion blog posts. A really fantastic balance of products, reviews, swatches, etc. I am so happy that I stumbled across her blog - I am always thrilled when I see that she's published a post. 

@The PolishAholic - I love her swatches. It's the perfect balm to my nail polish 'deprived' soul... (I'm sure my husband and family would disagree... haha). She posts an amazing variety of colors, finishes, and brands. There's definitely something on there for everyone. I have been convinced to buy a few polishes after seeing her swatches... check her out!! You will not be disappointed.

So that's it for today - I have more, but I want to save some more of my beauty blog lovin' for another post on another day! Let me know if you go check out any of these beautiful ladies! Show them some love!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Josh's Manly-Man Picks!

So I know that my husband won't be 'guest blogging' anytime soon, but I do know what his favorite manly hygiene essentials are. The medicine cabinet in our bathroom reveals all to me...

I figured this might be a fun change from the routine girly nail polish this, and fancy palette that... I challenge you, ladies, to share with the beauty community what your man's favorite hygiene/personal care essentials are!! I'd love to hear too! Maybe get some new and exciting ideas for the... bathroom?? :)

Numero uno. Down Under Naturals Ultimate Hold Styling Gel.
Josh normally has anywhere between 3 and 5 bottles of these in the drawer at all times (no joke). If he even begins to smell that he's on the verge of breaking into his second-last bottle, he immediately runs out and picks up another 3 or 4 more - just in case. This goes in when his hair is in-between damp and dry - he just shooshes it through his hair to get a piecy, messy, spikey look. He's told me before that he likes this particular gel because it doesn't flake out of his hair - it holds like it should, and doesn't make it look like he's got dandruff (as some gels do because they flake). That seems like good sensical man-talk, doesn't it? As far as we know, this is only sold at Superstore and, I think, London Drugs. Superstore is the cheaper bet though...
Photo credit:
Numero dos. Adidas Action 3 Anti-Perspirant in Control.
Okay, so this might be one of those products that I forced Josh into using, but hey! It isn't killing him any. Josh prefers clear, gel deodorants/anti-perspirants, but he admits that they get really messy and tend to run out more quickly than stick versions do. This deodorant seems to keep him fairly dry too - I mean, he doesn't sweat like a pig in any case, but this helps keep him extra dry. It can tend to leave smudges on dark shirts, so I'd caution you, ladies. I could not really describe Control for you, except to say that it smells like clean, sexy, amazing man whose armpits I want to bury my face in. Josh is currently using the same deodorant in the scent Intensive, and it's not half bad either - a good scent to switch it up with - more sweet and less in-your-face-amazing, but I still like it.

Photo credit:
Numero tres. Pert Plus 2-in-1 Shampoo & Conditioner in Classic Clean.
I do not know what this boy sees in his Pert Plus, but he loves it. I've had to hide it from him recently to force him into using up the last of our Head & Shoulders, otherwise he'd just keep buying it. He keeps asking for it though, so I'm sure I'll have to crack it out one of these days... either way, it's one of his top picks.

Numero cuatro. Toothbrushes.
One of Josh's favorite things of all time are toothbrushes. Before we got married the boy was constantly buying toothbrushes. He never kept track of the ones he bought and he hoarded those suckers up. I remember helping him move into our new place and creating, quite literally, a toothbrush drawer, where all of his purchases went. We will never have to buy toothbrushes again - I swear. Josh is a pretty diligent teeth-brusher though. And he brushes his teeth until they are squeaky - I suppose what he lacks in flossing gumbo he makes up for in brushing vigor.

And those are his picks. Seriously. This guy doesn't get too picky about too many of his products - he just uses whatever. That goes for his razors and shaving gel too - otherwise I would've included them in this post.

Let me know what you guys think about this post. What sorts of products does your man use on a regular basis?? What are his 'holy grails'??

Monday, March 19, 2012

Confessions of an Overactive Debit Card: Product Misses...

In lieu of el broken camera, I decided to do a post on products that I've purchased within the past little while that were real 'misses' for me.

For the most part, I like to think of myself as a proactive shopper, in that I do my research before going and splurging on makeup items that I may end up loving (or hating!) later. I seem to be getting better at this for the most part, but occasionally I still have those moments where I walk into the store and I'm like.... GIMME! GIMME! GIMME! And I go all crazy and buy up everything I can see.

#1. EOS Ultra Moisturizing Shave Cream in Pomegranate Raspberry.
The smell of this product, I love. In fact, if EOS would sell this scent to Skintimate, I would be so freaking ecstatic. BUT, I hate the product itself. I don't know what the 'h' they were thinking when they made this. Because it's a shaving CREAM, not a gel/foam, it doesn't lather when you're shaving - okay. Well this stuff is so freaking non-existent that you have to use like the whole freaking bottle on one leg. And not only that, but this stuff clogs up your razor SO bad. I get done one leg and I'm considering breaking out a new razor for the second leg. The cream doesn't rinse free of the razor so you basically replace your razor every time you shave. I have no 'shave lines' to follow as a guideline when I shave because the cream doesn't really show any contrast on my skin. Blah. I did not enjoy this... in the bag to my sister it will go.
Photo credit:
#2. The Body Shop Body Wash in Dreams Unlimited.
My parental-units-in-law got me a little sample size of this for Christmas. I didn't grab at it at all after I got it, mainly because body wash/soaps and I don't mix. At all. Everything irritates my skin, my eczema, my acne... better safe than sorry, so I don't crack this out at all. When my sister came and stayed with Josh and I a few weeks ago, she used this in the shower. Whoa. The scent just about killed me... it lingered in the bathroom for days afterwards. It was so perfume-y and flower-y. *gags*
Photo credit:
#3. Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circle Treatment Concealer in Light.
Now I may have actually liked this product had I picked it up in Fair instead of Light. Meh, I need to do a review on it, but I'm not one of the cult followers of this product. Ya, it holds up nicely but it's just sort of a gross consistency. The freaking applicator won't click up enough product, and then it clicks up too much... the concealer is thin, but heavy and cakes up on my undereye area. It settles into my lines. It's too orange-y/yellow for my skin... Blah.

Photo credit:
#4. Maybelline Great Lash Lots of Lashes mascara.
This is a product I actually really loved, but it was irritating my eyes like no other mascara has ever done. Every night I washed this off, some of the residue from the mascara would end up in my eyeballs, and every morning my eyes would be all goopy and irritated like I'd had an allergic reaction. Not coolio. So I stopped using it and the problem went away.... but I LOVED it. Argh. I bought a backup bottle that's sitting in my drawer right now - into the bag for my sister or mom it goes.
Photo credit:
#5. Maybelline Fit Me Blush in Light Pink
I picked this up a while ago, actually, but it's been sitting in my drawer for just as long. This has been such a waste of money... It's chalky and powdery, sheer-as-all-get-out, shimmery, and has that disgusting old-school Maybelline/CoverGirl powder scent. No matter how heavy handed I am with this blush, it refuses to show up on my cheeks.... and that's saying something! My skin lacks pigmentation - if anything, this should be too bright or bold for me. Save your money (haha, I feel like the ING guy).
Photo credit:
#6. Maybelline Baby Lips in Peach Kiss.
In all honesty, I like the idea of this product. I just don't use it enough to justify having purchased it. It's mediocre to me - nothing spectacular or stand-out-ish. It may be fantastic for some people, but it's just 'okay' for me. I could care less, and it would bulk up my purse less if I didn't have it at all...
Photo credit:
#7. Paul Mitchell Extra-Body Sculpting Gel.
I picked this up on a whim as London Drugs was having a 20% off sale on Paul Mitchell products. Meh. I don't think that this does anything for my hair. I keep trying it - on dry hair, on wet hair, on styled hair, before blow drying, before straightening, before curling, to scrunch definition into my curls... It doesn't seem to do anything at all. In fact, it seems like it might weigh my hair down and do the opposite of building body. This wasn't a cheap miss either...
Photo credit:
Wow, Maybelline seems to have made it on my hit list a lot this time around. And it's not even that I'm horribly disappointed with all of their products, I just could've saved myself money by not picking them up.

All-in-all, these are my product regrets from the past little while. It's a really sad list actually; I shouldn't have anywhere near 7 regrets. Such a waste of dineros. *Sigh de la sigh* Reviews on these products will be coming in the future!!

What are your product regrets of recent?

Friday, March 16, 2012

Haul from Las Vegas!!

So my parents took a 25th Anniversary trip to the States, and hit up Las Vegas while they were in Nevada. Upon request, they brought me back some 'gifts' that I had been desperately longing for...

So again, my camera's display has broken, so now I can't see anything I'm doing when I'm trying to take pictures. This is about as good as it gets right now while I'm trying to figure out what to do in the meantime... on the bright side, the nail polish pictures turned out okay :)

That being said - here is my haul. EEP!!!

They brought me back about 7 nail polishes. One of them is available in Canada, as far as I am aware, but the rest are not. Either way, who am I to complain about receiving nail polish?!?

Exclusive to CVS:
- Spoiled by Wet N Wild in Uh, As If!
- Spoiled by Wet N Wild in Tip Your Waitress
- Spoiled by Wet N Wild in I Only Eat Salads
- Spoiled by Wet N Wild in My Silicone Popped
- Spoiled by Wet N Wild in Let's Get Sushi
- Spoiled by Wet N Wild in Good Karma

- Wet N Wild Mega Last in Heatwave

Left to Right: Uh, As If!, Tip Your Waitress, I Only Eat Salads,
My Silicone Popped, Let's Get Sushi, Good Karma, Heatwave
Real Techniques Travel Essentials Kit
      (with Essential Foundation Brush, Multi-task Brush, Domed Shadow Brush, and Panoramic Brush Case)
- Real Techniques Stippling Brush

Ugh, this picture was a nice try, but after like five attempts I gave up... lol
They also bought me some key chains, one from the M&M Factory in Las Vegas, another sparkly one from Los Angeles. Plus I got a bunch of green M&Ms from the factory... do you think those are still kickin' around?? Haha. And a PayDay candy bar. I've never had one before, but it's really interesting - caramel and peanuts. Wowsas. Such a simple, but powerful combination!!

So far I've tried out the Spoiled polishes in Uh, As If! and I Only Eat Salads. FANTASTIC polishes. If you can get your crazy Canadian kahoonas on some of these bad boys, I highly recommend it. SO pigmented, so opaque, and the formula is to die for. DO IT. I've also tried my Real Techniques brushes, and I have to say I'm loving them. I haven't tried them with foundation yet, but for blush, bronzer, and concealer, they are funtabulous!!!!

Anyways, those are my goods, and if you would like a review/overview on any of the products mentioned, please let me know and I'd be happy to accommodate you :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Sally Hansen Smooth & Perfect Nail Polish in Sorbet

I purchased this polish from London Drugs for $7.99 CDN. These can be purchased anywhere Sally Hansen nail products are sold, although I've only seen them at Shopper's Drug Mart and London Drugs so far. One bottle contains 13.3 mL (0.45 fl oz) of product. There are 7 other "barely-there" shades available: Fog, Linen, Dune, Satin, Whisper, Air, and Sea

*Note that my camera has decided to die, so there aren't pictures at this moment... as I can find a functional camera and/or find other blog posts that can supplement this  I will direct you accordingly... sorry!!*

Sally Hansen claims that this line of polishes is a breathable, streak-free formula which hides imperfections and ridges on nails. The formula is supposed to let 20% more oxygen reach nails, and is enhanced with ginseng, camelia oil, and lotus to promote healthier and stronger nails. Sally Hansen recommends using 2-3 coats of polish to achieve your desired finished effect. I definitely used 3 coats, and 2 layers of Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat.

First off, I have to say that this is one of the SMOOTHEST polishes I've ever had the pleasure of trying. It goes on so seamlessly, and it's incredibly easy to build up a layer of polish even when it's still wet. This polish does very little (if any) streaking... and any slight streaks that you might see in the first coat or two evens out with the subsequent coat, even with a layer of top coat. It almost feels like melted butter going on - it's not too runny, but not too thick. If it was a deeper shade of polish, I feel like the formula would need to be a touch thicker, but for the available shades, this is perfect.

The color is of sheer-moderate pigmentation. If you're applying thin coats, it will go on incredibly sheer, but if you apply thick coats the pigmentation is incredibly easy to build to full opacity.

Sorbet is a delicious warm peachy-orange-nude-ish shade. It has a very slight peachy-yellow shimmer/frost to it, but surprisingly enough the shimmer is almost undetectable. The shimmer does not create very noticeable streaks or lines in the polish, and those that do occur are very easily fixed with additional coats. I LOVE this shade, though I wish it was an ever-so-slightly richer peach shade; however, I'm not complaining - this I love. And fortunately, I have nothing in my collection that looks like this...

Check out Pixie Polish's blog post on this polish: 

This polish dries moderately fast. I noticed that my second coat took a lot longer to dry than my first and third layers, but overall, I was impressed with the dry time.

I would definitely agree with the claim that it hides imperfections and ridges on the nails. This morning in the shower, my razor bit a fairly sizeable chunk out of my fingernail, and this flaw is completely camouflaged under the polish. To be honest, I can't even remember what nail was affected...

My biggest beef with this polish is the bubbling. Oh my, were there bubbles. After 1 or 2 layers of Seche Vite to seal in my color, the bubbles were very subtle, and only visible up close; however, the bubbling overall, is definitely my least favorite aspect about this polish. Any day I'd take streaking over bubbling... Meh.

The wear time is pretty good, considering the bubbling and such. The doctors think I might have developed a second case of the chicken pox (yes, it can happen to you...) and so I've been itching like a mad woman. Over two to three days of incessant itching and scratching, my manicure managed to remain very fresh and chip-free. There was normal wear on the ends, but nothing too obvious or noticeable. My first chip happened last night when I was trying to put my keys on a new key chain - one of the keys slipped and caused my polish to peel. 

The only other 'questionable' aspect to this polish, in my opinion, was the weird way it dried around my cuticles. On several of my nails, it took on this crazy texture that look really unfinished. It was sort of bubbly and didn't lay flat... it was just sort of unsightly.

As far as the 'conditioning' aspect of this polish goes, my nails did seem somewhat better for the wear than they did BEFORE wearing this polish. I wouldn't say that my nails were in fantastic shape, but the polish didn't seem to strip any nutrients from the nail itself, and they seemed very smooth, healthy, and somewhat hydrated - as weird as that sounds. I would need to test this theory out more, but I don't think that the whole 'care' aspect of this polish is complete bull...

Overall, would I repurchase? I think so. But I'd have to find a color in the collection that I'm desperate for and couldn't find in another cheaper formula from another brand.  They're nice polishes, but they're not amazing. I can find similar colors in other brands that don't bubble like crazy or dry weird at my cuticles. Other polishes may be more pigmented and cheaper too... HOWEVER, I am not really dissatisfied with my purchase either - more so, complacent. Maybe through more trial-and-error, I'll find that I really love/hate this polish, and my review will be a little more yay or nay. The price point is a little iffy for me, if I could find it cheaper I'd be more willing to buy more of them.

Have you tried the new Sally Hansen Smooth & Perfect polishes? What do you think of them?

Overall 3 out of 5 stars.
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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

7 Deadly Sins of Beauty

Hey everyone! Sorry for being MIA yesterday (and part of today...). I was crazy sick this weekend, and now I have another health problem popping up... not to mention how busy I am with school right now. If I neglect posting in the coming weeks, please know that it's only temporary. And then my camera broke today, so I won't have product pictures for a little while yet... sorry!!

In lieu of all of this, I decided to do a fun tag that's been circulating around YouTube the past little while. I'd love to hear your responses if you get a chance!!

Also, if you get a chance, check out some of my favorite beauty gurus' videos on the 7 Deadly Sins of Beauty:
Julia (MissChievous):
Allison (Amarixe):
Julie (Julieg713):

I found this awesome picture on Google Images, and I thought it really fit with this post.
1. GREED: What is your most inexpensive beauty item? What is your most expensive?

My most inexpensive?? Probably my Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear nail polishes. They sell for about $2.49 CDN at WalMart. Good thing they don't mean collectively... I have A LOT of them.

My most expensive item? Oye. It's a tie between my Urban Decay Naked 2 palette and my NARS Sheer Glow foundation, at about $50 CDN each. I suppose in this case the NARS would win out because it's more money for a smaller product.

2. WRATH: What beauty products do you have a love/hate relationship with? What product has been the hardest to get?

I have a love/hate relationship with Cover Girl LashBlast mascara. It is my all-time favorite mascara, but I hate it's longevity. I feel like I have to replace this mascara every month instead of every 3. It dries up insanely quickly... but I LOVE IT.... argh.

The hardest products to get have been my NYX products, especially the blushes. We have some stores in Canada that sell them, but the displays are limited and I've never really found a display that sells blushes and bronzers from NYX. I have to order mine from, which sucks - but at least I have a way to get them.

3. GLUTTONY: What are your most delicious beauty products?

Bonne Bell lipLITES. Come in a variety of scents AND flavors. What you smell in the tube is what it tastes like on your lips. I love Angel Food Cake and Caramel Latte (though I think Caramel Latte has been discontinued...). I think I eat more of the lipgloss than is actually on my lips for people to see...

4. SLOTH: What beauty product do you neglect, due to laziness?

I neglect lip products in general. I rarely put on lipstick, lipgloss, lipstain - even chapstick at times. I just couldn't be bothered...

5. PRIDE: What beauty product gives you the most self confidence?

Mascara, I think. My naked eyelashes are basically invisible to the naked eye so I look like a freaker in the morning. Mascara gives my eyes that extra pop and makes them look infinitely larger, even if it's the only beauty product I use.

6. LUST: What attributes do you find most attractive in the opposite sex?

This is going to sound massively creepy, but I swear it's what attracted me what STILL attracts me to my husband... veiny arms, Adam's Apples, and chiselled jaw bones. Josh has SUCH veiny arms... the veins just bulge out of his arms and the backs of his hands... so freaking sexy, I tell you.

I love well-formed Adam's Apples - not too big, not too small. I don't like Adam's Apples that look like they'd stab your eye out if you got too close. Josh has 'the perfect' Adam's Apple to me :)

I love the look of a chiselled jaw too. A really defined profile is so sexy on a man - nom nom nom.

I love my husband, have I mentioned that recently?? Haha.

Ya. He's a stud.
7. ENVY: What items would you most like to receive as a gift?

Samantha Chapman's Real Technique's Brushes. Oye. I want these bad boys so much... I can't get them here in Canada, but I would love to get them as a gift. I asked my parents to pick me up some if they came across them on their trip to the States. I guess I'll find out this week if my dream has come true.... EEP!

What are your guys' 7 Deadly Sins of Beauty?? Post as a comment, or send me a link to your blog post on it!!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Friday, March 9, 2012

Maybelline SuperStay 24-Hour Concealer

I can't remember where I purchased this, but it would've been from a store that sells Maybelline Cosmetics. It retails for approximately $5-$7 CDN. There are 5 shades available: Ivory (10), Cream (20), Light (30), Medium Beige (40)and Deep Beige (50). I have the lightest shade in Ivory (10). One tube contains 0.18 fl oz (5.5 mL) of product.

I was first intrigued to try this concealer after hearing Pinkiecharm rave about how much she loved the SuperStay foundation from Maybelline. I knew that I wouldn't be able to find a match in the foundation (I'm too pale and my skin tone is neutral-based), but I figured I'd give the concealer a try.

According to, this is supposed to be a 24-hour wearing, no-transferring type of concealer. It claims to "provide natural-looking coverage that lasts all day, [while] concealing imperfections, flaws, undereye darkness and circles." It is oil-free, non-comedogenic, dermatologist and ophthalmologist tested, and fragrance free.

The packaging really isn't anything special. A clear tube with the company name and product name forms the base, with a solid white twist-on handle. The applicator is a stiff doe-foot on a short wand. The doe-foot is not very plush, so it applies the concealer very specifically and deliberately, while not soaking up a lot of product that becomes wasted.

The concealer itself (or at least this shade) is VERY pale. When I first apply this to my skin, it looks virtually white with a slight peachy/pink tinge. The concealer is very thin in consistency, not quite watery, but a little bit does go a long way.

No flash, natural light.
Left: unblended swatch, Right: blended swatch.
With flash.
Left: unblended swatch, Right: blended swatch.
It is INTENSELY pigmented, but it spreads evenly and is definitely somewhat buildable. This concealer is pretty heavy duty overall. It's one of the most pigmented concealers I own.

When working with this concealer, you have to work quickly. It dries INSANELY fast. I recommend only working on one spot/eye at a time - apply and blend out quickly. Then move on to the next trouble area. In addition, this product goes from a liquid to powder consistency - so after it dries you're left with a very powdery-matte finish, which does not budge. This concealer almost melds in with your skin, to create a very camoflauged finish. I don't recommend powdering the concealer after you're done blending, as this can give too powdery of a finish, and can look cake-y.

I find myself in a love-hate relationship with this concealer. While it is insanely pigmented, and I love the way it dries quickly to a non-sticky/non-tacky finish, I do not love how the powder-ish finish clings to any dry or even patches on my skin, thereby emphasizing them times ten. After application, it is nearly impossible to rectify this cakey appearance without removing the concealer completely and starting from scratch. 

This concealer is very unforgiving around dry patches. My undereye area is often on the drier-side of normal, and this product clings to every little flake and makes it incredibly obvious. I find that this concealer (no worse than normal) does settle into my fine undereye lines too. On my face, it's the same story - any blemishes or areas around my nose that show even the slightest hint of dryness suffer exaggerated attention from the concealer.

One thing that is for certain - this concealer does not budge. It lasts virtually all day (not 24-hours like Maybelline claims...) without significant fading or transferring. Huge thumbs up, there!

I love this concealer in that the color is pretty much perfect for me - it is incredibly light. It's not really too pink, or too yellow, or too orange - it's just right. It does have a more pink/peach-ish tinge, but that's really what helps conceal my dark circles. Like I said earlier, Ivory (10) applies practically white on my skin, which is ideal. It really brightens my undereye area, but also covers my darkness too. It's borderline-too-light for my facial blemishes, however, but if I apply foundation over top of the concealer, this fixes the problem almost instantaneously. It is also the perfect 'winter' concealer for me... as soon as my skin starts getting some sun, however, this one finds its way back into my drawer.

Overall, this concealer is okay. I wish my skin wasn't so dry in certain places so I could use this more readily. I'm also thinking that if all of the shades run lighter, this might only be suitable for undereye concealing. And if you have dry skin, by no means should you pick this up... this will be disastrous for you. However, my oily-skinned compadres, this might be a really nice alternative for you :) If you're looking for a long-wearing, transfer-resistant concealer - this may be what you've been looking for...

3 out of 5 stars.
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What is your favorite undereye concealer?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

New Nail Polishes that I am dying to have...

Lately, I've seen a bunch of new polishes come out. Mostly Sally Hansen, but that's what excites me most...

- Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear in Coral Reef.
In the bottle it reminded me A LOT of China Glaze's Flip Flop Fantasy, but when I swatched it on my hand it was a deeper pink shade and significantly less neon. Nonetheless, I am still intrigued enough to potentially buy it...

Check out I Love Beauty 20's blog post by clicking here.
- Sally Hansen Smooth & Perfect Color + Care.
I am in love with the shade Sorbet in the bottle. I've checked out a few swatches of it, and I am determined that I must have it. Unfortunately, these polishes have a steeper price tag than the other Sally Hansen polishes available. Still... I don't own anything like Sorbet, and I'm simply dying for a peachy-orange polish.

Check out Pixie Polish's blog post by clicking here.
- Sally Hansen Gem Crush polishes.
These are brand new to Canada, though I've seen them in blog posts and videos before. I'm not a huge fan of glitter polishes in general, but these are gorgeous. Enough so that I'm struggling to fight the urge to buy them... I just can't help myself around sparkly/shiny things...

- OPI Pink Friday.
I was SO going to get this yesterday, and then I came across a video on YouTube where OPI's Pink Friday from the Nicki Minaj collection was allegedly duped for Sally Hansen's Insta-Dri polish in Pink Blink. Needless to say, that was enough to make me turn my head and pass on the OPI. I already have Pink Blink, and while I do like it - I don't like it enough to have 'two' of the same polishes... plus, I read some reviews about the less-than-stellar consistency of Pink Friday, so I figured... save the $10 and buy something else that you're really in love with.

- Nicole by OPI Kardashian Kolors inspired by Kim
OHHHHHH my gosh. When I saw Polish Insomniac's post on this... I nearly died. Which ones am I interested in?? Ummm... all of them!!! Especially Kim Konfidential, Others Pale by Kim-parison, Here Kim's the Sun...

What new polishes have you been eyeballing lately??
Haha, speaking of "eyeballing," I am reminded of this (skip ahead to 2:58...):

This scene makes me laugh SO hard every time.