Monday, May 28, 2012

I be haulin' - 05.28.2012 Summer goodies!!

Hola my beauty lovin' babes!!

Sorry for the long-ish absence. I've been so busy with work and cleaning the house, reading the 3rd book of the Hunger Games trilogy, and studying for my spring courses, I've had little time to write up blog posts. But I've recently found some inspiration as I got a few goodies over the past few days, and feel compelled to share in this little haul...

#1. Marcelle BB Cream in Light/Medium.
I picked this up recently after looking high and low for a decent drugstore tinted moisturizer-esque alternative to liquid foundation. Don't get me wrong - I still love the Revlon ColorStay foundation, I'm just looking for a lighter alternative that's easier to slap-on-and-go in the mornings before work.

#2. Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment with SPF 15 in Rose and Original.
These were my birthday gifts for being a Beauty Insider member with Sephora. SUPER excited to try these out and see how I like them. So far, I love the texture, scent, packaging, and tint.

#3. St. Tropez Gradual Tan Everyday Body.
I received this as my 200-point perk with Sephora as I was checking out. Another item that I'm squealing with excitement over. I hear nothing but amazing things about the St. Tropez collection of bronzing products. I'm really wanting to try the bronzing mousse though - Kandee Johnson raves about it...

#4. Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil.
Sephora always gets me with those little bins of mini/travel/discounted products near the checkouts. This time I came across a small bottle of argan oil and I knew I had to try it. I've heard so many amazing things about how this works wonders on your skin and hair, and I was compelled to pick it up and try it out. I've used it a couple of times on my face and once on my hair so far, and I've got mixed feelings about the results. Stay tuned for a review...

#5. Origins Modern Friction Microdermabrasion.
I received a sample of this upon checking out at Sephora. I tried it in the shower today. Personally I didn't find anything miraculous about it, and it was too small of a sample to really know what it did.

#6. Hanae Mori Paris Eau de Toilette.
Another sample from Sephora (I was rolling in the freebies by the time we left the mall...). I LOVE the scent of this, and yet, (apparently...) it's a men's cologne. I don't really care though - it smells of like, sunscreen, vanilla, and happiness rolled all up into one. I adore it - seriously, you should check it out if you get a chance. Notes of lemon, lavender, green notes, blackcurrant buds, iris, jasmine, lily of the valley, cedarwood, sandalwood, oakmoss, amber, tonka bean, vanilla, and chocolate <-- seriously!? How did they decide that this was a more appropriate scent for men!?

#7. Lise Watier Summer Sunset Bronzer (limited edition)
I picked this up, sort of on a whim. After eyeballing it at Shopper's Drug Mart when picking up the BB cream a few days back, I looked up several reviews on the powder, and knew I had to add it to my small collection of bronzers. Being as pale as I am, it's very difficult to find 'the right' bronzer for my skin tone. Fortunately, this appears to be a very convincing bronzer for me. The powder is silky smooth, and creates a gorgeous glow on my face. Can't wait to use this more and let you guys know what my final opinions are...

So that's my haul. I hope you guys enjoyed this long-overdue post. Here's hoping I have a few more posts coming within the next few days - have a fantastic week!!


What is your favorite summer beauty item!?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Nicole by OPI Kim-Konfidential nail polish

Hola my beauty lovin' babes!! I am bringing you a review on a fantastic polish that I've been wearing regularly for the past few weeks...

I picked this polish up at Shoppers Drug Mart for $10.99 CDN (OUCH!!). Nicole by OPI is a lot cheaper when you find it on sale, or if you pick it up at WalMart, so I don't really recommend buying it from Shoppers unless it's your only option. In my case, I was just desperate to have it. My wallet hates me now. One bottle holds 15 mL (0.5 fl oz) of polish. Kim Konfidential is one of six polishes released in the Wel-Kim to my World collection for Spring 2012.

No flash - natural sunlight.
I had seen a lot of swatches of this collection online, and one day I finally decided that I had to try this beautiful peachy nude. I'd read several reviews that had noted that the color was very difficult to pull off, especially on medium skintones because it came off as muddy and 'dead' looking. I'm so happy I took a chance on this polish.

It's a peachy, caramel-esque nude shade. It's a creme finish, and there are no sparkles or glitter in it. It takes about 3 even coats to achieve the most flawless and opaque application.

With flash.
With flash (under a window).
No flash - natural sunlight.
In different lights this polish gives off a different look. In some lights, it looks more yellowy, while in other lights it almost mimics my skintone (scary, eh!?). It's very nude, and very work appropriate. But I think this would look really great (on my skintone, and other fair girls...) with a tan. 

The nail polish itself dries relatively quickly. About 2-3 minutes is required between coats, but obviously, the longer you let it set and dry, the more resistant it will be to accidental smudges.

I find that this polish wears fantastically. I don't really have problems with chipping or excessive wear - unless I'm doing some h-core stuff with my hands. But overall, I can leave this polish on for several days (including a top coat) before I have to worry about noticeable chipping and wear marks.

Ah! I seriously love this polish, and I'm definitely considering buying a back up, because it's just that fantastic! Definitely one worth checking out if you are interested in purchasing a new nude polish for your collection. Very unique - I haven't seen many shades like this available in drugstore brands.

Definitely 5 out of 5 stars!!!
* * * * *

What's on your nails at the moment!?!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Annabelle Le Big Show Mascara

I picked up this mascara for $11.49 CDN (before GST) from Shoppers Drug Mart, though it is available wherever Annabelle cosmetics are sold. Next time I'd probably pick this up from WalMart to take advantage of the reduced prices, but in this case I was desperate for a new tube of mascara. The tube itself contains 0.38 oz (10 ml) of product. As far as I'm aware, it is only available in one shade: Black.

The package claims that the mascara will give you "mega volume from the first stroke [of the brush]," while "[separating] lashes easily without clumping" and finally, "[adding] tons of length for show-stopping lashes." It is ophthalmologist tested, so it's safe for contact-lens wearers and those with sensitive eyeballses. According to, this mascara is supposed to be smudge-proof, resistant to running, and flake-free.

As far as the packaging goes, it's fairly simple. No fancy handles or crazy eye-catching exterior. The tube is black with pink splatter marks all around, with the name of the mascara and the brand name on it. It's one of the more heavy mascaras (as far as packaging goes) that I have ever owned, which I appreciate. The shade name is not located on the immediate product packaging, probably because only one shade is available for retail. The brush is the old-school fiber-type  wand. I'm not the hugest fan of this kind of nylon-bristled brush - I tend to gravitate towards the silicone, bendable brushes. No bells, whistles, or grandiose marketing gimmicks here.

Left to Right: Maybelline Volum'Express One by One mascara,
Annabelle Le Big Show mascara
After first opening the tube (straight from the packaging), the formula of the mascara itself is fairly wet. Not as wet as L'Oreal mascaras tend to be, but wetter than I was expecting. If I'm not careful the mascara will transfer from my lashes to my eyelid after application. For this reason I think I'm going to start applying my eyeshadow after applying my mascara... or trying the infamous 'card' trick.

The only shade available is Black, but this is one of the best blacks I've had the pleasure of trying. 

My first experience with this mascara was right after I bought it - I had my first night class of the spring semester at University, and my lashes needed a pick-me-up, so I opened this baby up and applied it over top of my Maybelline Volum'Express One by One mascara applied earlier that morning. My lashes did not clump up or get that 'spider' look, in fact they felt incredibly flexible (as compared to other mascaras I've used).

This mascara doesn't flake or smudge off, giving me 'raccoon' or 'panda' eyes throughout the day. It removes easily with my Cetaphil Gentle Daily Skin cleanser, water, and a wash cloth at night. When I've broken into bouts of tears, I haven't noticed that this particular mascara runs as easily as some of my non-waterproof mascaras (Maybelline Volum'Express One by One, for example). The wear-time is really respectable. If I'm rubbing at my eyes a lot or if I were to (regrettably) fall asleep with this mascara on, it lasts well. I can sometimes notice a bit of wear at the very ends of my lashes as the day goes on, but it's not enough to be detectably noticeable.

I feel that as far as this mascara goes, I'm really happy to be purchasing something from a Canadian brand. It's no surprise to those who follow my blog that I adore Annabelle Cosmetics, so I'm not really surprised that this mascara turned out to be another one of their 'show-stopping' products in addition to their Smoothliners, and mono eyeshadows.

I love how this gives my lashes volume and length, how the mascara doesn't irritate my eyes, how it removes easily yet lasts throughout the day. It really is quite fantastic. I wish that they did sell it in a brown or brownish-black version though. I'd love to have it for a more subtle, natural everyday looks... but as far as the mascara itself goes, the lack of color selection isn't enough to deter me from re-purchasing.

Thanks to Tracy @BeautyReflections for recommending it to me. It definitely has been a hit thus far, and is my new favorite mascara to date :)

4 out of 5 stars
* * * *

What's your favorite drugstore mascara of the moment?!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Essence Stay with Me Lipgloss

These lipglosses retail for $2.99 CDN a piece at Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada. There are 6 shades available: me & my icecream (01), my favorite milkshake (02), candy bar (03), kiss kiss kiss (07), deep rose (08), and hottest pink (09). Each tube contains 4 ml of product.

Now, if you've been reading my blog for the last little while, you'll have noticed that I'm not a huge fan of lipgloss. In fact, lipgloss rarely makes it (if ever) into my monthly favorites, and I seldom have reviews on them. I'm just not a lipgloss junkie. After Josh and I got more serious in our relationship (pre and post-marriage), I started leaving lipgloss out of my daily routine. There is nothing Josh hates more than when he goes to give me a kiss and he gets lipgloss all over his face... so all of my lipglosses have been sitting dormant on my vanity.

Whilst reading a post of Tracy's at Beauty Reflections, I came to the conclusion that I had to give lipgloss another try. Especially for $2.99. After getting my job, I realized that I could wear lipgloss during my work hours instead of wearing it on my time with Josh. So I resolved to pick up 2 colors. Sam Schuerman's Easter-inspired makeup tutorial encouraged me to grab me & my icecream (01), and my favorite milkshake (02) was a last minute, spur-of-the-moment, impulse purchase.

With flash.
Left to Right: my favorite milkshake (01), me & my icecream (02)
No flash - natural sunlight.
Left to Right: my favorite milkshake (01), me & my icecream (02)
The packaging of these glosses is interesting. The gloss itself comes in a very small, stout, transparent plastic tube, with a black twist-off wand. The applicator is semi-spongey, and semi-silicone, which makes it flexible but great for applying the perfect amount of product to the lips. The applicator is not your standard doe-foot, but is hourglass shaped. Some people might dislike the shape of the applicator, but I find it to be my FAVORITE kind of applicator. The very tip makes it easy to place product precisely where you want it, and the contours of the hourglass configuration make it SO easy to spread and apply larger amounts of product, especially to the upper lips and around the cupid's bow. A HUGE selling point for me. In fact, I find that this kind of applicator makes it incredibly easy for me to apply the gloss without looking in a mirror. Usually I refrain from applying lipgloss without a mirror or reflective surface present, but not with these puppies.

me & my icecream (01) is a light cool-toned baby pink shade. There is no shimmer in this gloss.

my favorite milkshake (02) is a warm peach pink shade. Also, shimmer-less.

With flash.
Left to Right: my favorite milkshake (01), me & my icecream (02)
No flash - natural sunlight.
Left to Right: my favorite milkshake (01), me & my icecream (02)
Let me just say that I FREAKING ADORE THESE LIPGLOSSES. Seriously. They are right on par (in my opinion), if not better than, the Bonne Bell lipLITES glosses.

The product itself does have a very noticeable scent, but it does not deter me from repurchasing, as I love the marshmallow-y scent. The scent does linger for quite some time, but the strength of the scent becomes less noticeable as time goes on.

These lip glosses are SO smooth. They fill in any lines on your lips, and create a creamy, seamless, glossy finish. These glosses will not give you that 'mirror' or 'glassy' shine that some other glosses do, but that's okay with me. The shine is subtle, but does create the illusion of fuller lips. my favorite milkshake (02) tends to be slightly stickier and tackier than my & my icecream (01) - I don't know if it's just my gloss in particular, but it's something to be aware of in any case.

No flash - natural sunlight.
Naked lipses.
No flash - natural sunlight.
my favorite milkshake (01)
No flash - natural sunlight.
me & my icecream (02)
On my lips, these glosses are not tacky at all. In fact, I barely notice that they're even on. They are so lightweight. However, sometimes it's easy to get too heavy handed in your application of the gloss, in which case it can kind of gob-up on your lips and look really goopy, almost-stringy, and unattractive. I'd start out with a thin layer on both lips to start, and then build up the color (in thin layers) until you get your desired finish.

The color is not obnoxious or in-your-face. The glosses themselves definitely are not opaque in terms of pigmentation, but the color is noticeable, even obvious - but is a great alternative for those looking for a little bit of color, without the obnoxious, in-your-face finish that some glosses can give.

These are by no means the longest wearing lipglosses you can purchase. Because they aren't sticky, the lasting power is lacking. I'd say I get about 2 hours of wear (max) out of these babies before having to reapply (without eating or drinking). I really don't mind reapplying, especially because they're so cheap and I love them so much.

They wear off gradually, both in finish and color - so your lips don't look patchy or uneven as the day goes on. As they wear, they leave a bit of a residue on your lips that is neither noticeable or unwanted. They just feel coated with a chapstick-esque layer, which I appreciate. 

The gloss itself feels super moisturizing on my lips. It doesn't aggravate dry patches, and I don't need to apply a chapstick or lipbalm before using this gloss. It feels like chapstick-in-a-tube, much like my beloved Bonne Bell lipLITES, except more moisturizing than those.

At $3 a pop, these are SO worth it. I cannot stress this enough. I find myself constantly reaching for these glosses, and I even feel a little sad in the evenings when Josh comes home and I have to refrain from reapplying them. But the mornings always bring that little bit of joy, knowing that I get to break out my new favorite lip products. I'm considering purchasing the other four glosses, as it's such a bargain, and I can definitely see myself reaching for all of the shades in the future.

If you're looking for an intensely pigmented, long-lasting, sticky, glitter-bomb of a lipgloss. These will not be for you. Remember, you're paying $3 for this gloss - don't expect the universe of it.

AHHH. I cannot recommend these enough. Seriously, run out and buy yourself one, two, three... maybe even all six of these fantastic glosses. And let me know what you think!!

Without hesitation, 5 out of 5 stars.
* * * * *

What's your favorite brand of lipgloss??!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Maybelline Colour Tattoo 24 Hour Cream Gel Shadow (Part 1)

These spiffy little cream/gel shadows retail for approximately $5-$9 CDN a pop. They are sold wherever Maybelline cosmetics are available for purchase. The Color Tattoo eyeshadows are available in 10 funtabulous shades: Tenacious TealFierce and Tangy, Too Cool, Audacious Asphalt, Painted Purple, Bad to the Bronze, Pomegranate Punk, Tough as Taupe, Bold Gold, and Edgy Emerald.
Of the 10, I have 2 in Tough as Taupe and Bad to the Bronze.
*Note: Since moving, I haven't been able to photograph pictures of Bad to the Bronze, as we've run out of AA batteries. I will post a second part to this review detailing my experience with Bad to the Bronze as soon as I can find me some batteries for my camera...*

As far as color selection goes, there's not a whole lot to chose from - in fact, only one of the shades is matte. I'd love to see Maybelline expand this line and bring out some more matte shades - like a nude, a white, and a black.

According to, these shadows have 24-hour intensity with a tattoo-esque tenacity. Their 'ink technology' yields an intense, long-lasting cream eyeshadow. Maybelline claims that the cream formula will glide on without creasing, as well as prolonging the vividness of the color. They are ophthalmologist tested and safe for both contact-lens wearers and those with sensitive eyes. 

These come packaged in glass pots with twist-on black caps. The base is made of a transparent, heavy glass through which you can see the color of the product. The name of the product is located on the lid, which can prove to be problematic if you're using more than one of these babies at a time - you could potentially get the lids with the names and their colors mixed up. I don't think it would be a super huge deal, but that's just me...

There is a considerable amount of product in these little pots, so I'm sure that one will last you forever.

For the record, I've never tried the MAC Paint Pots, which the Maybelline Color Tattoo shadows have been compared to.

Of the 10, Tough as Taupe is the only matte shade. It's a purple-y, gray-ish taupe shade. 

With flash.
No flash - natural sunlight.
I usually apply these shadows with my fingers, though I've used synthetic brushes too. I feel that if you were packing on the color in a very specific area - the brush method would be more appropriate for application; however, for general purposes and application - your finger works just fine. Additionally, the warmth from your fingers will help create a smoother application, and will improve the blendability of the product.

For work, I tend to sweep the color across my eyelid with my ring finger, and then I use my pinky or middle fingers to blend out the color in my crease. I pop on a little eyeliner and mascara and run out the door for work. It's a fun, easy, and gorgeous look to obtain in a short amount of time.

No flash - natural sunlight.
With flash.
I find these cream shadows incredibly easy to work with. They're smooth and pigmented, so one swipe gives you great color payoff which easily blends into a wash of color, or an on-the-go smokey-esque eye.

These cream shadows don't dry too quickly, which gives you a generous window of opportunity for blending and evening out the application. I find that they dry in just the 'right' amount of time. 

As for longevity, I find that these babies last 'all day' on me. I have tried these with and without an eyeshadow primer underneath. Personally, I found that these last an entire workday (about 8 hours) without creasing, though fading is somewhat noticeable without using a powder shadow to set the cream. I let my best friend try these when she was visiting, and she really enjoyed them too, though she felt that with her extremely oily eyelids, they did not stand the test of time quite like they do on my skin. She noticed slight creasing and fading as the day wore on, but nothing too terrible looking. After trying them for a couple of days, she determined that she'd have to use an eyeshadow primer BEFORE using the Color Tattoo shadows, just to help with creasing and fading.

As far as color selection goes, there aren't a lot of options for 'work appropriate' use. I feel that Bad to the Bronze and Tough as Taupe are about as good as you're going to get on that front. A lot of the colors are shimmery, which is sort of a bummer. 

Overall, I'd say these are a fantastic product and well worth your money. Perhaps if you're the owner of some seriously oily eyelids, you'll want to invest in an eyeshadow primer to prep your eyes before applying these cream shadows, but on the whole I'd say they have a very respectable longevity - especially for work wear. If for nothing else, you could use these as colored bases for your eye looks. On the whole, I'm thinking that if you buy one and decide you hate it - you're not out that much money in the first place. In my opinion, they've definitely lived up to all the hype they've been getting.

4 out of 5 stars.
* * * *

What's your favorite cream/gel shadow!?

Friday, May 4, 2012

April 2012 Favorites

Hola my beauty-lovin' babes! My apologies for the extended absence - we managed to find a new apartment last Saturday and moved in on Monday, plus I started my new job on Monday - and we've been internet-less until now. Hopefully the internet stays functional for the next little while :)

Anyways - it is the beginning of May, which means the end of April is past, and we need to talk mis favoritas!!

#1. Maybelline Eye Studio Color Tattoo 24H Cream Gel Shadow in Tough as Taupe.
This was definitely a huge favorite of mine this month. It made quick-and-easy, out-the-door looks possible in very short amounts of time. I loved it so much I went out and bought Bad to the Bronze yesterday. A review on these babies will be coming soon...

#2. Schick Hydro Silk Razor.
I was fortunate enough to receive this razor for free when I stumbled into Shopper's Drug Mart one day. They were just handing them out to people, with coupons for ridiculously good discounts on the refill razors, should you choose to repurchase afterwards. I ADORE this razor. My husband always makes jokes about how many blades razors have - this particular one has 5. He jokes that the fifth blade "mulches," he's so silly. But no seriously, this razor is AMAZING. Review coming asap...

#3. L'Oreal True Match Super-Blendable Blush in Immortal Flush.
I got this under the recommendation of Sam Schuerman on the YouTube. I immediately fell in love with the gorgeous orangey/peachyness that is this delicious little blush. Definitely a must-try, I'm so going to look into getting a few more of the shades from this collection. LOVE!

#4. Nicole by OPI Nail Polish in Kim Konfidential.
This is a gorgeous, flesh-toned nude. I have worn it SO much this month, and I'm really loving it. Such an office-appropriate shade of polish for your nailses.

#5. Hard as Hoof Nail Strengthening Cream. 
I've been using this cream again on my cuticles and nails to strengthen them and get them in a summer-ready condition. I've only been using it once to twice a day, but it's already made a HUGE difference. My nails are getting stronger, growing faster, my cuticles are smooth and not peeling nearly as much. Yahoo!

#6. Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in Blackest Black.
This has been my new favorite eyeliner, and I've definitely been using it every day. I need to get back into the habit of creating perfect winged looks, but this liner makes it incredibly easy to create opaque lines. Love it!!

#7. George's Light Special Moisturizing Lotion.
I picked this up when my old tube of the original George's formula ran out. This one has saved my hands a lot lately. The Light formula has made it SO much more easy to use in comparison to the thick, original formula. LOOOOOOOOOVE this stuff. I need more tubes/bottles of it in my life.

My music favorite. I'm going to add this dimension to my Favorite posts now, because I freaking adore music... and usually when I find a new song that I love, I play it to death until I hate it...

#1. Payphone (Clean/Radio edit) by Maroon 5 (I prefer the version without Wiz Khalifa).
I stumbled across this beauty by accident the other night (yes, very close to the end of April, but I know it's my new favorite song...). I was singing it in my sleep last night. Ya. I adore Maroon 5, and this song is just balm to my soul... <3

Anyways ladies, I hope you had a fantastic month. Here's to another amazing one! May is my birth month too, so I'm super stoked for that!!

Let me know what your monthly favorites are in the comments section, or send me a link with a like to your monthly favorites on your personal blog!