Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Best of Beauty: Makeup 2013

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Rose Gold Perfection: Becca Rose Gold Shimmer Skin Perfector Review

For the latter part of the year I have been very interested in stepping out of the box with product ranges I purchase and been opening my eyes to cosmetic lines that offer superb pigmentation and higher quality.
 I took an unexpected visit to the Downtown Sephora in Toronto and with the blink of an eye I noticed the line Becca on the shelf.
I don't personally know a lot about Becca but what I can tell you is that they have a varied shade range especially for dark skin and offer a product line to create natural flawless looks.
I had previously saw a review (the thing that gets me in trouble) on Becca's highlighters and decided to test out a few in store.
They are absolutely beautiful and I saw a limited edition rose gold highlighter was on display and I grabbed it faster then you can say hello! A few details and my impression on the skin perfector are below.


Details

  • Becca describes this product as a shimmering skin perfector that provides luminosity in any light
  • Becca uses a unique process for their highlighters whereas they don't press dry pigments together (which is typically done) they blend pigments with liquid binders which provides a creamy texture and beautiful pigmentation
  • This rose gold shimmer is combined with warm toned coppers, golds, rose golds and peachy shades that provide a beautiful gleam on the face
  • This is a limited edition shade exclusively available for the holiday season
  • This skin perfector can be purchased on Becca's website or at Sephora
  • This product is paraben free 
  • Retails for $46 CAD 
My Impression 
  • I am totally in love with this skin perfector 
  • It is a product that can be universally flattering on light to dark skin if used sparingly
  • Due to the deep pigmentation and smoothness of this product it is easy to go overboard and over apply, so it is great to use a fan brush/stippling brush to apply products on the cheekbones
  • The wear on this product is great I found it lasted for about 8 hours 
  • I love that there is a beautiful design in the powder itself and the packaging is very sturdy as well. 
  • The rose gold color provides a unique look on the skin and provides a beautiful glow 
  • I also enjoy that this product can be used all over the body during summer time
  • I will use this to multitask as a highlighter, cheek color,  and eyeshadow


Saturday, December 7, 2013

The Bold and The Beautiful: Nars Guy Bourdin Blush Coeur Battant Review

When it comes to blush I really get excited. I don't even remember where my love for blush began but all I know is that Nars makes some of the meanest blushes on the market.
The reason I love them is because they are ultra pigmented, have long wear on the cheeks, and have some of the most universally flattering tones on the market.
The quality alone aids with my decision to invest in these blushes that are a bit on the pricier end.
Nars cosmetics launched their holiday collection which pays homage to Fran├žois Nars admiration for controversial fashion photographer Guy Bourdin's art.
If you read up information on Guy Bourdin you will see why he is considered controversial and why this collection has stirred the pot across the beauty community.
For me personally I choose to have my personal opinions about my perceptions of Guy Bourdin work and focus solely on the collection itself because prior to this collection I have never heard of this artist.
I on the other hand fell in love with a few of the products in the range but decided as we near close to Christmas I would get the one stand out product (to me) in the collection and that was this beautiful blush Coeur Battant.
I will go over some information on this blush plus my personal opinion!

About Nars Coeur Battant Blush
  • Coeur Battant is a beautiful bold magenta color 
  • This blush is limited edition only available for the holiday season, or while quantities last
  • Coeur Battant is completely matte (Love)
  • The packaging has Guy Bourdin artwork on it however the actual blush palette is the traditional black Nars palette
  • There is 4.8 grams of product (Typical of all Nars blushes)
  • The blush palette also contains a mirror that is helpful on the go
  • Nars blushes retail for $32 CAD
  • Nars blushes can be purchased at Sephora, The Bay (Canada) and on the Nars website

My personal opinion on Coeur Battant Blush
  • This blush may look intimidating in the pan however when applied with a light hand it creates a beautiful pop on the cheeks
  • Coeur Battant is extremely pigmented so may be tricky for lighter skin tones to work with, however a stippling brush will aid in getting just the right amount on the cheeks
  • This blush is universally flattering however I believe it will look really nice on tan to darker skin tones
  • Coeur battant has the silky smooth application Nars blushes typically have
  • This blush is easy to blend out on the skin 
  • I am excited that I got my hands on this blush and would definitely repurchase again (although I am sure I won't have to since I've never hit pan on ANY blush I own)
  • Coeur Battant is a very unique blush (in my collection) and is definitely a beautiful blush to add to your Christmas list this holiday season
Wearing Nars Coeur Battant

Friday, December 6, 2013

My Holy Grail Mac Products (+playlist)

Tender Love and Care: Cantu Shea Butter Deep Treatment Masque Review

The last several months I have been neglecting my hair in the worst way.
I was always diligent with deep conditioning and pre-pooing my tresses, and the fact that I added honey blond streaks to my hair was a big motivator to keep up the high maintenance.
Now I am back on my TLC (tender love and care) vibe and been searching for some deep conditioner masks that don't break the bank and are easily accessible.
I already have my holy grail from Shea Moisture, however in Canada it is $20+ and I wanted to see if I could find something comparable in the beauty supply store.
I do not believe I have found a comparable replacement for my Shea Moisture masque and will discuss some information about this deep treatment masque and my impressions.

Information on Cantu Shea Butter Deep Treatment Masque:


  • Cantu Shea Butter masque is a deep conditioning treatment that is suppose to nourish dry, damaged and brittle hair
  • This masque is made with 100% Shea butter 
  • Cantu is formulated without harsh chemicals and ingredients
  • This product contains no mineral oil, sulfates, parabens, silicones, gluten, or DEA (something hard for me personally to find in a beauty supply)
  • This product is not tested on animals
  • Cantu Shea butter Masque contains 340g of product (very reasonable) 
  • Cantu should be applied all over the hair with special attention paid to the ends of your hair
  • The instructions indicated to leave it on for 30 minutes and rinsed out 
  • It can be left on really dry hair as a leave in conditioner
  • I picked it up at my local beauty supply Clore in Toronto and it retailed for $8.99 CAD

My Personal Impressions/Experience:

  • I was very excited at the reasonable price tag on this masque in store and noticed it is always on sale
  • I was thrilled with the product ingredient listing because I find it challenging to find products in the beauty supply that have no mineral oil, sulfates or parabens
  • The smell of the product is pleasant
  • The consistency of the masque is very nice and thick and coats the hair very well
  • The amount of product in the treatment is great and can be used at least 4-5 times (even on my thick hair)
  • I applied the masque to my hair for over 30 minutes (typical for me) but my hair felt stiff and dry on my first attempt
  • Upon my second attempt with this masque I left it in for a little over 30 minutes and my hair felt a bit better, however wasn't as soft as I would prefer
  • I will not be repurchasing this product once I have finished it because it didn't provide any stellar results

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Tahitian Treat: Monoi Tiki Tahiti Review

  I love to research new products, I mean LOVE to research them, and when I overheard a blogger mention the use of Monoi oil (moh-NOY is how it is pronounced) my Carmen Sandiego search commenced.
Let me provide some background on this product and why it sparked my interest!
  It is said that the beautiful ladies of Polynesia use monoi oil to moisturize and condition their beautiful long locks and skin for centuries and the unique blend of ingredients within the oil is what is said to be beneficial with keeping hair healthy, shiny, and beautiful.
I personally went through tons of articles, blogs, and information about the oil since I was quite unfamiliar with it.
Monoi oil's claim to fame is that it contains immense soothing and moisturizing properties, and have been used by Polynesian woman for centuries.
I will provide more detailed information as well as my personal thoughts on this product I adore.

Information on Monoi Tiki Tahiti Oil

  • According to the website Monoi.com, monoi oil is a unique blend of cosmetic grade coconut oil, tiare flower (a Tahitian gardenia flower) and vitamin E
  • There are no preservatives, or animal products added 
  • The handpicked tiare flower is placed into the monoi oil to add a beautiful scent to the product (soaked in for 15 days)
  • The tiare flower is said to slowly release their unique properties and legendary virtues into the coconut oil
  • There are several scents of monoi oil sold: the original monoi tiki taire, ylang ylang, coco coconut, vanilla, santal sandalwood etc
  • Monoi is commonly used among Polynesians as a skin and hair softener
  • There are many monoi oils on the market however authentic monoi oils follow a very strict manufacturing code that supervises the entire process from handpicking the tiare flowers to storage and shipping of the final product. 
  • There is an official Appellation d'Origine seal on every Monoi product
  • Monoi oil retails for $14 CAD
  • Contains 120ml of oil in each bottle
  • Can be purchased at Monoi.com, at some natural health food stores, and Honeyfig (Toronto)
My Personal Thoughts:

  • The smell of this product is absolutely divine and leaves a sweet smell in your hair for days (I have purchased the Vanilla scent)
  • Even though it comes in a small bottle it lasts for a long time because very little product is actually needed to coat ends of hair
  • The actual tiare flower is in the bottle floating around 
  • After washing and conditioning hair I add monoi oil after my moisturizer has been applied to seal the ends of my hair
  • I also will use the oil sparingly when my hair is dry and I am braiding/twisting it for the night
  • I also will add it sparingly to my hair throughout the week
  • I have used monoi oil not only in my hair (which it keeps moisturized) as well as on my skin in the winter months (does wonders to keep skin hydrated)
  • I stick to the original brand of monoi because of the product ingredients (no preservatives)
  • The coconut usually gets solid (in the packaging) in the winter/spring time so I let it sit in a bowl of warm water to melt down the product
  • I have found it has helped reduce split ends when used consistently and adds shine and bounce to the hair when used moderately
  • Coconut oil has always helped me throughout my hair journey and this is like a step up from regular coconut oil
  • Too much of the monoi oil can weigh down hair and make it feel and look greasy so use moderately 
  • I absolutely recommend this product to any woman that wants to improve the condition of their hair

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Honey I'm Home : Oyin Handmade Honey Hemp Review

Oyin Handmade Honey Hemp 
When I first started my natural hair journey I became obsessed with finding products that would moisturize and help my hair grow!
I had big chopped my hair after being impatient and annoyed with two textures and was on a rampage to grow my hair as quickly as possible.
When I say obsessed I mean I would spend hours on YouTube, blogs, forums, etc getting ratings and peoples opinions on various products and watching video after video on hair regimen and routines and that is where I became familiar with Oyin handmade hair care line.
Oyin handmade is one of the standout hair product lines for me and I have dabbled with a couple of their products over the years.
Oyin honey hemp is by far one of the best leave in conditioners I have ever used, and due to me being a product junkie who always needs the "hit" of a new product in my arsenal I have strayed. However I am back and happy as before. I will go over some information on the product and my personal thoughts.
Sample of Oyin Handmade Honey Hemp 


About Honey Hemp:
  • Honey hemp is a multifunctional conditioner 
  • It can be used as a pre poo treatment,  in the shower as a conditioner, used as a leave in conditioner or applied as a deep treatment
  • Contains aloe vera gel, hemp oil, honey, silk proteins, coconut oil, hydrolized silk, and fragrance
  • This product is paraben free
  • Best to be used within 3-6 months after opening but can be used up to one year
  • Can be purchased in three sizes: 8.4 oz, 16.9 oz, and 33 oz (with a pump)
  • I purchased the 8oz bottle for 20 CAD at Honey Fig (Toronto)
  • Can be purchased directly on Oyin handmade's website or in other natural hair stores
Wash and go with Honey Hemp as the Leave in Conditioner 
My Personal thoughts on Honey Hemp

  • I personally use honey hemp as a leave in conditioner and love the softness, sheen, and smell it leaves in my hair
  • I have used it as a wash out conditioner in the past and it really aids with detangling
  • To use Honey hemp as a pre poo or deep conditioner you can add olive oil,  coconut oil, castor oil etc
  • The ingredient list is incredible and really makes my hair feel very soft 
  • I have used this product up to a year with no problems, it just needs to be kept in a cool place such as a cupboard or closet
  • I have personally seen some of my best results in terms of moisture and growth with this conditioner
  • This leave in conditioner mixes well with a lot of different products I have tried in the past
  • The honey acts as a natural humectant in the hair so is perfect for the spring and summer months, however I still use it in the winter without any issues (humectants used in low humidity (cold dry winter air) can sometimes cause moisture to be removed from the cortex of the hair shaft creating really dry hair) however I have never had an issue with this product
  • Defines my curls very lovely and leaves a nice sheen in the hair 
  • I love the smell of the product is has a nice fruity light scent and it lingers in the hair for days
  • The packaging is decent because it come in a squeeze bottle that allows you to disperse the right amount of product 
  • It is a bit on the pricey side but works so well (is worth every penny to me)
  • I am fortunate to be able to pick it up/or order directly from Honey Fig in Canada 
First at home Blow out 

Overall I really love this product and glad I have returned to it after my hiatus! So far I have been applying it to my hair after washing as my leave in conditioner strictly and adding some more to my dry tresses every few days as needed. 
If you are looking for a vegan hair product line this is a great brand to try out! 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Fab Reds: Fave Red Lipstick, Nailpolish, & Blush

Bling Bling!! Chanel Soleil Tan De Chanel (Sheer Illuminating Fluid) in Sunkissed Review

Lately there have not been many makeup products that have been wowing me or have made me excited.
However due to me always watching reviews, makeup collections, and reading blogs I always find out about products I have no idea are right under my nose.
Illuminating, highlighting, or bronzing products are my weakness and I feel like I can never have enough (strange addictions maybe?)
When I first heard of Chanel's sheer illuminating product I just couldn't find that much information on it pertaining to how it looked on darker skin tones. However I searched and searched and dug a little information up and went to my local Chanel counter (The Bay) and tried it and fell in LOVE.
I will provide some information about this illuminator.


Some Information about Chanel Soleil Tan De Chanel:
  • This illuminator is described as a sheer weightless liquid that brightens the skin
  • It contains light reflecting pigments that illuminate the skin and provide a natural sun-kissed glow
  • This illuminator contains botanicals that are suppose to moisturize and soften the skin
  • Chanel Soleil tan de Chanel is oil and fragrance free (so good for sensitive skin as well)
  • This illuminator can be purchased at any Chanel counter worldwide
  • Chanel soleil tan de Chanel retails for $51 CAD (purchased at The Bay)
  • Suits many different skin tones light, tan, and dark skin

My personal Thoughts on Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel:
  • This illuminator is truly sheer and weightless on the skin
  • Very little product is actually needed to achieve a glowy look (that appears natural)
  • The packaging is sleek and you just need to shake the bottle and place your finger on the opening and enough product comes out allowing you to tap it on your skin or mix it into your foundation
  • I love the fact that there is absolutely no glitter in the formulation, it just appears as liquid gold 
  • This illuminator makes the skin appear to have a natural glow exuding from the inside out
  • On my dark skin (NW 45 in MAC cosmetics for reference) I am able to see the highlight and it looks very natural
  • This product can be layered for more brighter highlights
  • The illuminator can be mixed in foundation to achieve a radiant look 
  • Also can be used as a base on cheekbones and powdered bronzer applied
  • Can be applied on the temples, bridge of nose, etc (without looking greasy)
  • I tend to apply the product with my fingers, or my Real Techniques contour brush, or buff it into the skin with a flat top kabuki brush
  • Shows up nice in photography (however don't use too much or you will look insane)
  • I wish the bottle came with a pump because I can see getting the last drops out of this product will be a headache
  • The frosted glass bottle also will make it difficult to see when it needs to be replaced in the future
  • Absolutely in love with this illuminator and would repurchase over and over again

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Sugar, Sugar! Soap and Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub Review

I never have been one to jump on a bandwagon, however since I have started reading and contributing to blogs, and watching youtube and creating my own I have become TOO aware of various brands and products people rave about and love.
I feel like I have become "About that Life" of needing to find the BEST of THE BEST and it can make your pockets extra weak and empty lol.
Anyhow another brand and hype that has caught my attention is Soap and Glory!
It is now finally available in Canada and I have tried a few of their products out and will be honest thus far I have been disappointed.
I am thee exfoliation queen because I have been "blessed" with dry, non smooth skin so I searched high and low for Soap and Glory's sugar crush body scrub. I have heard nothing but positive comments about this product and only some Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacies sell it.
I was hoping and praying that it would replace my Lush Ocean Salt scrub because it cost $35 CAD and I use it a couple times a week and shelling out the $40 was getting tiring and painful.
It looks like I will be on that Lush diet forever! :(
I will go over some information about Sugar Crush and my thoughts.

Some information about Sugar Crush Body Scrub:


  • Sugar crush is a scrub that can be used to scrub dead skin off the body
  • Sugar crush can be used 1-3 time a week in the shower
  • This product is infused with lime, sparkling lemons, vanilla musk, almond oil, macadamia oil, sea salts, crushed brown sugar, and glycerin (EXCELLENT)
  • It is said to leave dry skin feeling smooth and subtle
  • It is also suppose to work great on dry patches on elbows, feet, and knees
  • Can be purchased on Amazon.com, Sephora (US website), Boots (UK), and Shoppers Drug Mart (Canada), etc
  • Retails for $20 CAD

My personal thoughts on Soap and Glory's Sugar Crush Body Scrub:
  • Sugar crush has a beautiful sweet lime smell that lasts for hours after you come out the shower
  • The scrub comes in a reasonable size tub of 500 ml
  • I like the fact that it is sold in my local pharmacy/drug store, so easy to attain
  • The ingredient list is absolutely marvellous 
  • Personally I am not in love with the actual consistency of the product, it is a paste I find challenging to use
  • I tend to lean to scrubs that are very gritty because I have a lot of rough dry patches on my skin
  • As winter approaches and my skin gets drier I already know this formulation will not be strong enough
  • This formulation may be great for people with sensitive skin, or people who do not like very gritty scrubs
  • I also find that the paste/product gets all over the tub and leaves salt everywhere
  • Aside from the beautiful smell I really don't feel a difference on my skin after each use
  • I will not be repurchasing this product and am disappointed 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Cracked and Dry Hands to Go: Soap and Glory Hand Food Review

There is always a time of the month I become obsessed with a product line, and go hunting and researching it down to the core!
Soap and Glory was that product line and I was excited that Shoppers Drug Mart
(Canadian Drugstore) started carrying the line and had some points I could redeem and save on items in store.
I have heard so much hype on Soap and Glory's Hand food lotion and decided to buy the small version for my purse to keep my ashy hands at bay.
My skin has been so dry as winter is approaching with quickness and was excited to try this lotion out.

Some information about Hand Food:

  • Soap and Glory's hand food is said to be a non greasy hydrating hand cream
  • Contains Shea butter, macadamia oil, and marshmallow
  • Is sold in two different sizes 50 ml and 125 ml ( I purchased the 50ml)
  • Can be purchased at Shoppers Drug mart for $5 CAD (50ml) $10 CAD (125ml)
My Personal Thoughts on Soap and Glory's Hand Food lotion:
  • The cream has very good ingredients that I enjoy and are known to be nourishing to the skin
  • The smell is absolutely beautiful and is long lasting
  • I do not like the consistency of the lotion it appears thick from the tube but feels watery and does not nourish my dry hands
  • The product is not greasy at all so might be better used for summer when I do not need as much moisture
  • The small size packaging is very useful to tuck in my purse
  • Overall I will not be purchasing this lotion, I need something more nourishing with a thicker consistency


Toronto IMATS: Mini Haul + Pictures


Monday, November 4, 2013

Makeup Be Gone: Bioderma Sensibio H20 Makeup Remover Review

I love to do various eye looks such as a smokey eye, or deep colors in my crease, cat eyes, etc, but notice a lot of black residue left on my eyes no matter how much I wash my face, or use makeup remover and it was driving me crazy.
I stumbled across Bioderma makeup remover in my local Shoppers Drug Mart (A Canadian drug store) and saw that it  had a sticker on the bottle stating it was on the top of Chatelaine magazine's 100 beauty winner. The sticker sparked my interest so I went home to look up reviews. (Yes I can't buy without reviewing these days lol)
All reviews raved about the product so I picked it up and gave it a whirl and I must say it is pretty good.  I will outline my thoughts on the product below.
Bioderma Sensibio H20 Makeup Remover 250 ML


Details about Bioderma Sensibio H20:

  • This makeup remover is specially formulated for sensitive, normal and dry skin 
  • Is suppose to gently cleanse face and eyes
  • Can be used for waterproof mascara/ makeup 
  • Contains soothing ingredients that prevent irritation on the skin
  • Sensibio doesn't need to be washed off the face  
  • This product can be used daily
  • Sensibio is fragrance and alcohol free 
  • Bioderma retails for $20 CAD and can be purchased at Shoppers Drug Mart (Canada), Amazon.com, EBay, and stores within Europe (just google) 
My personal thoughts on Bioderma Sensibio:
  • This remover is really gentle on the skin and eyes and doesn't cause any irritation or burning on my eyes (rare all other ones I have tried always burn or make my eyes blurry)
  • Removes makeup around the eyes very thoroughly and only takes 2 cotton pads for all traces to vanish
  • Leaves face feeling smooth and hydrated
  • Has a nice light fresh scent
  • Although can be used without washing face I always wash my face and continue with my routine
  • I will admit this remover is a bit on the pricey end for a remover ($20 CAD) but it is worth it considering I don't use it daily
  • Only 250 ml of product so very small (again luckily I don't use eye makeup remover daily) 
  • Packaging is small and compact so can easily be taken on vacation or packed into a makeup bag for travel
  • Can be purchased easily at my local drug store
  • Very little product needed with each use
  • Overall very good product and would repurchase
  • There is another formulation in store for regular skin types (stronger formulation) 

Friday, November 1, 2013

Late to the Party: Real Technique Core Brush Review

Living in Toronto and being a beauty addict sometimes can be difficult.
We have all the beauty shops you can imagine, big department stores that cater to the masses, and can order what we want online to stay in the loop with our friends over the boarder, however sometimes I wish I could walk in a store and see all items for myself (sure every woman in every country wishes this).
As a YouTube junkie I constantly get bombarded with hot product on the market and sometimes have a hard time getting my paws on them easily.
I adore the Pixiwoo sisters on YouTube and have been watching their videos for years. The Pixiwoo sisters do makeup tutorials and talk about fave products and are real down to earth ladies from the UK.
Samantha Chapman (the eldest sister) released affordable makeup brushes called Real Techniques and finally Wal-mart Canada brought them in store (tears).


Some Basic Info on the Brushes:

  • These brushes can be purchases in Wal-mart (Canada & US), Amazon.com,  Real Techniques.com,  Ulta, Target (US), Kohl's, Wegmans, Boots, Priceline, Fedco, etc (The Real Techniques website details the stores they can be purchased in) 
  • This core collection retails for $18 CAD at Wal-mart Canada
  • The collection comes with 4 full size brushes and a case that can be neatly folded and carried
  • Within the kit there is a detailer brush, a pointed foundation brush, buffing brush, and a contour brush
  • The brushes are synthetic and cruelty free


Left to Right: Contour Brush, Pointed Foundation Brush, Detailer Brush, and Buffing Brush

My thoughts on the Brushes:

  • The brushes are worth every dime plus more to me personally
  • They are very sturdy, the brushes are extremely soft (similar to brushes made with animal hair)
  • Each brush is lightweight and sturdy with a unique long aluminum pharaoh 
  • The detailer brush can be used to apply concealer in small spots or under eyes, as well as can double as a brush to apply lipstick, or detailed work on the lids of your eyes
  • The pointed foundation brush I personally find too small to apply foundation but I use it to apply concealer to my under eye area or spots on the face
  • The contour brush is excellent to apply a light natural looking contour to the hallows of the cheeks as well as apply highlight to the cheekbones
  • The buffing blush is excellent and works well with liquid foundation to provide a airbrush application to the face and buff in product effortlessly! Hands down my fave in the collection
  • For such a great price I will be purchasing another set for my freelancing kit in the future
  • I am glad I finally gave into the hype and purchased these brushes because they are very nice for the price and are worth more then their selling price
  • The brushes wash very well with mild soap/cleaner and dry very quickly
  • I have washed them 3x's and found no shedding or mis-shaped brushes (whoop whoop!)
  • I am hoping that Wal-Mart Canada gets some more of the line because there are many that are sold in singles that get rave reviews
  • PS. I have slowly seen them in Marhsall's and Winners as well!!!! (Same price though) 
  • Overall a great buy and great brushes



Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Beyond Excited: The Toronto IMATS

November has arrived with a blink of an eye.
Aside from the pesky Canadian winter, the dark mornings and early evenings, and winter preparations I am excited because the IMATS are coming back to Toronto!
The IMATS stands for International Makeup Artist Trade show and will be hosted by the Metro Toronto Convention centre November 9th & 10th 2013!
This trade show is the bomb.com for not only makeup artists but makeup enthusiasts such as myself.
The trade show allows you to shop for makeup brands that are hard to find on the ground, introduces new innovative brands that are coming out, see top makeup artists speak and lend advice on getting started in the industry, as well as get discounted makeup from some of the biggest companies of beauty.
The IMATS are very exciting, I have been 2 years in a row and enjoyed the atmosphere and learning about my favourite subject: Beauty
 IMATS are in other major cities such as New York, LA, London, Vancouver and Sydney and each carry different vendors lines so check your local listings if you are in any of those areas.



Just some pointers if you plan on attending IMATS this year or in the future:


  • Purchase your tickets on IMATS website! Unfortunately I already missed the early bird special, however I will be getting the next batch of tickets. Paying at the door is more costly and the event could sell out as well. When you purchase online it also saves you a lot of time at the event and allows you to get your IMAT experience popping ASAP! (Whoop whooooppp)
  • Go to the Saturday show if possible and arrive EARLY.  You know what they say: early bird catches the worm, and that ain't a lie. The earlier you come the more you can look around peacefully (for a bit) you can get your hands on the hottest items (which tend to get sold out quickly) and you can navigate your way a bit more peacefully through the vendors. 
  • Visit the big vendors first! OCC, Mac Pro, Makeup Forever etc sell out the quickest, and have the craziest lines. Also bring a list because it cuts down on the time you stand there deciding on what products you wish to have.
  • Also bring Cash (plenty of it) there is no interact, and very little vendors have credit card terminals! Remember it is a trade show (they operate like the olden days people) Last year I brought some cash and had to go hunt down a bank outside and wasn't impressed! 
  • Bring your camera! There are cool exhibits, models in the makeup competition, and you may bump into some cool personalities. Last year I met TheQueenOfBlending from YouTube. I love her and have been following her for years!!
  • Wear comfy shoes, a light jacket, and take a small purse! This isn't the club or a fashion show ladies and gentleman. Yes your face should be BEAT. However your 8 inch stilettos will get played out hour one in the Crown Brush line. Your thick winter jacket will have you getting heat exhaustion, and your huge purse will feel like weight after hours. Dress wisely. Cute and comfy I say!
  • Take a list of the booths you wish to see ( it can get so overwhelming once you are inside) and jot down the times of the seminars and classes you want to see. (Waiting in line for 45 minutes for eyeshadow and missing a key speaker is very annoying trust me)
  • Tissue, makeup wipes, mirrors, and hand sanitizer is also good since you will be swatching products and trying to make quick decisions.
  • Have fun! Network, talk to people, participate in seminars, see as many vendors as possible. Take in the experience

Step into the Underworld: Illamasqua Underworld Lipstick Review

I mentioned in my other posts that finally Canada (Toronto specifically) has a Illamasqua counter in The Bay department stores! I have been so delighted because I finally get to see the products and actually play with them, versus gamble and order online.
I have a beautiful lip gloss from Illamasqua called Boost and it is a iridescent purple that is very unique to my lip gloss stash.
I get the most compliments about this amazing lip colour paired over purple lipstick so decided to purchase the matching lipstick to it called Underworld.



Information About Underworld:


  • Underworld is a iridescent violet colour 
  • This lipstick can be purchased at Illamasqua.com, Sephora,  and The Bay (varied locations please google)
  • Retails for $30 CAD at Sephora and $24 CAD at The Bay (The Bay sells Illamasqua cheaper then Sephora)

  • Here are my thoughts on Underworld:
    • Underworld goes on the lips extremely sheer and is very hard to layer over for the ideal coverage 
    • The lipstick applies very patchy and emphasizes any spots and fine lines on the lips
    • The tube I received had a mouldy like appearance on the lipstick which I was unhappy with
    • The lipstick could work if layered with a thicker gloss, or topped over a deeper shade of lipstick, but I like a lipstick that can be worn on its own
    • I also found the lipstick very drying on the lips and made it very uncomfortable to wear within an hour 
    • The packaging of the lipstick is nice and sleek but you are able to see finger prints all over (not a big deal to me personally)
    • This lipstick can be purchased at Illamasqua.com, Sephora,  and The Bay (varied locations please google)
    • I returned this lipstick to the counter a week later because I was quite unhappy with it overall, but will probably try some of Illamasqua's other lipsticks in the future
    • I was so disappointed in the lipstick that I didn't take a picture I though worthy of it but there are many examples online


    Thursday, October 24, 2013

    The Cover Up: Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer Review

    Lately I have been obsessed with concealer...amongst everything else. I have been getting so little sleep and have been suffering from the worst insomnia of my 29 years of life.
    I do not have dark under eye circles or anything major however I do have lines under my eyes that tend to stick out like a sore thumb the days my insomnia is at its worst. 
     I have watched enough tutorials and got enough demo's in store and decided I must get a concealer a bit lighter then my skin-tone to brighten my under eye area.
    As a makeup connoisseur I'm sure this sounds like common sense, but in all honesty I think that  look appears funny on me and never turns out how I like. 
    Long story short I read and seen rave reviews on the Nars Radiant Creamy concealer and decided to pick it up and jump into the pool of hype lol.

    A few details about Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer:

    • Nars describes this concealer as a creamy concealer that helps to blur lines, imperfections and hide dark under eye circles while using light diffusing technology to create a smoother complexion. 
    • The collection comes with 10 different shades that suit woman of the lightest skin tones to woman of darker skin tones. 
    • The packaging is a slim and sleek plastic tube (15 ml) similar to Nars lip-glosses and comes with a doe-foot applicator to apply the product 
    • Nars radiant creamy concealer is said to suit all skin types
    • The concealer is extremely creamy which allows for you to seamlessly and effortlessly blend it out with your fingers or a brush
    • The coverage of is medium to full coverage when layered
    • It has a beautiful satin finish that does leave the skin looking luminous and youthful
    My Personal Experience:
    • I bought shade Amdande for a highlighting effect under the eye but it was a bit too yellow based for my skin, so I exchanged it for Cafe with was a perfect match (I'm Mac NW45 for reference) 
    • This shade by no means can highlight your under eye if you are similar to my shade
    •  It actually is the exact skin tone match, however the thickness and creaminess of the product helps to conceal under my eye
    • For me it would crease and no matter what I tried! I would set it with a setting powder and within hours it creased under my eyes and settled into the wrinkles under my eye
    • The formulation is beautiful and the colours are also varied for all types of skin colours but I was disappointed at the continued creasing under the eye
    • I returned this concealer after trying to play with it in several ways and likely will just stick to my holy grail Mac prolong-wear concealer to avoid creasing
    • Nars radiant creamy concealer can be purchased at Sephora and The Bay and retails for $28 CAD
    • I would suggest if you are interested in purchasing this product to try it out in store a few times and see if it works for you
    • I am hoping that one day the formulation is improved because the actual product is beautiful
    • Many people say it works for them and is a holy grail so give it a shot 



    Nars Blush Collection


    Monday, October 14, 2013

    Luxury in a Compact: Guerlain Terracotta Bronzing Powder Review

    I have a wish-list of many different makeup items I constantly fall in love with and want to purchase in the future, it creates havoc in my head and on my wallet but I need it because I am a beauty junkie.
    This list never gets smaller, only larger and I guess I'm like one of the cosmetic industries favourite types of shoppers. The shoppers that don't have much limits and like to own many things (lol).

    I have been eyeing Guerlain's bronzing powder for at least 6 months but could not allow myself to spend so much money on it. 
    Of course the day came that I was unsatisfied with a product purchased at my beauty counter but couldn't bear to leave the store empty handed and BOOM the bronzing powder was mine.

    A few details and my thoughts on this powder:
    • Guerlain Terracotta is a finely milled powder that is used to add tan/bronze to the face
    •  It leaves a beautiful natural looking glow to the face without being over the top and filled with glitter (leaves a natural looking sheen on the skin)
    • This powder has a matte finish with small flecks of sparkle that wear fabulous on the skin
    • Guerlain has expanded the shades in the line so that woman of many complexions can find a suitable bronzer ( 8 shades in the collection) 
    • The bronzer I picked up is called Ebony and even on my dark skin (NW 45 for reference) it looks beautiful, is build-able, and provides a beautiful glow to the face
    • The bronzer blends easily into the skin creating a natural contour and gleam
    • Guerlain is said to be packed with moisturizing ingredients and the powder leaves the face feeling lightweight 
    • I actually used the product all over my face (Yes I tried it) and it makes my face look flawless 
    • This bronzing powder is formulated without: sulfates, phthalates, GMOs, and triclosan
    • The wear on the powder is incredible! I wore mine for a full 12 hours and it still was on my face upon returning home
    • This powder does have a floral scent to it so if you are sensitive to scents this might be a powder to avoid
    • This powder is very pricey $57 CAD (yikes) but is worth the cost in my opinion
    • Guerlain can be purchased at Sephora and The Bay (Canada)
    • This product does not oxidize and turn a different colour on the face once worn

    Overall I recommend this product if your looking to splurge for the holiday season or have been on the hunt for a really nice bronzer/ contour shade!


    Take a look at my video I show the product and mention it in my review !!!!

    Mini Beauty Haul -Mac Cosmetics, The Bay, Sephora, Etc

    Friday, October 11, 2013

    Fine like Wine: Marvelous Moxie Lipstick in Lead the Way Review

    BareMinerals Marvelous Moxie: Lead the Way Lipstick
    While strolling in Sephora (my usual) one day I stopped at the Bare Minerals section of the store and noticed they had a lipstick collection. I am not that familiar with Bare Minerals, however I do know they are known for their foundation and skincare!
     I decided I wanted to expand my brand horizons like any regular makeup junkie should and swatched Bare minerals moxie lipsticks all over my little hands.
    All the lipsticks I tried felt extremely moisturizing, and where all pigmented.
    I wondered why I had been bias and walked past these lippies all along.
    Lead the Way
    Anyhow I fell in love with a purple lipstick called Lead the way and decided to bite the bullet and purchase it.

    Here are a few details about Lead the way:

    • Lead the way is described as a "wine" colour, which is a deep purple
    • This lipstick has a creamy formula which wears very comfortable on the lips
    • There is also a slightly glossy sheen which is noticeable upon application of the lipstick (satin like finish)
    • The lipstick is very pigmented and looks opaque once applied (2 thumbs up)
    • Bare minerals says they have included fatty acids and vitamins within the formulation that aid in keeping the lips moisturized (Vitamin A, C, and E) 
    • Lead the way and all lipsticks in this collection come in a unique lipstick tube that requires a press of a button to slide the lipstick up (quite innovative but a little tricky at first) 
      BareMinerals Marvelous Moxie Lipstick Packaging
    • All lipsticks within the collection are formulated without parabens, sulfates, and phthalates 
    • Lead the way would suit lite, tanned, and darker skin tones with ease
    • Perfect for the fall/ winter months especially since keeps lips moist
    • Best worn with a darker lipliner to prevent lipstick from bleeding outside of the lips
    • Retails for $23 CAD and can be purchased at Sephora or Bare Minerals website
    • I did realize (upon returning home) that it resembles 2 other lipsticks that I have in my collection so returned the lipstick
    • It looks like a dupe to Mac's Rebel (my favourite) and Wet & Wild's Sugar Plum Fairy 908 C
    • Overall I feel it is a beautiful lipstick, however if you have the dupes I have listed I would save money and look at others in the collection 
    • Going forward I will be checking out other lipsticks in the line because I believe I will really love the formulation 
      Swatch of Lead the Way Lipstick 
    • P.S don't forget that you are able to return cosmetics (if you don't like/ have changed your mind) so keep your receipts handy








    Dupe Comparison: Wet &Wild 908C, BareMinerals Lead the Way, Mac's Rebel

    Sunday, September 29, 2013

    Ohhh Girl that Glow: Illamasqua Cream Blusher Libido Review

    Illamasqua's Libido Cream Blusher
       Illamasqua is quickly becoming my favourite brand next to my beloved Mac cosmetics.
    No surprise of course because they are edgy, avant guard, and have vibrant, pigmented cosmetics.
       I was overjoyed when Illamasqua opened a counter in Toronto inside our department store They Bay! Not only was the counter so pretty and stylish but had very nice MUA's working that where ultra helpful.
        I decided to check it out and look at some products I have had on my wish list for months.
    I am big on glowing and being bronzed and now that we are right in fall I am trying to go more low key; a little less bronze, a little more glow. 
    I am huge fan of DestinyGodly on YouTube and she has been raving about Illamasqua's Libido for so long and I love how it looks on her.
    I got to sample this blush with a MUA (makeup artist) and purchase Libido and fell in love. I have been wearing this for the last few days and love how it wears and looks!


    Swatch of Libido Cream Blusher
    Thoughts on Libido:
    • Libido appears to be a bright red but goes on the skin as a beautiful deep orange
    • Libido is a cream blusher that is best applied on the cheeks with fingertips to blend into the skin or with a stippling brush for light application
    • On the packaging Illamasqua says this blusher can be applied not only to the cheeks but as a highlighter on the cheekbones, however I have only used it as a blush 
    • Libido provides a light colour on the cheeks but is build-able for a deeper colour easily
    • Very little product is needed and the colour provides a beautiful natural warmth to the face
    • The texture of the blush is very smooth and creamy and lightweight on the face
    • This is a great blush to start off with if you are new to blushes 
    • Cream blusher can double as a lip tint/lip colour as well
    • The packaging is sleek and light and contains 4g of product
    • This blush does leave a dewy finish on the skin so oily girls may want to skip this product or be sure to have the rest of the face matte
    • This blush wears beautiful with a nude/dark/colourful lip when applied lightly 
    • The wear on the blush is phenomenal wearing between 7-8 hours without fading
    • Libido is absolutely stunning on tanned to dark skin complexions but lighter ladies can easily pull it off with light application
    • This blush can be purchased at Sephora, The Bay (Canada check locations), and Illamasqua's website
    • Libido retails for $26 CAD
    Take a look at my video! I swatch and discuss Libido Cream Blusher here! 

    Friday, September 27, 2013

    Talking that Talk Beautifully: Talk that Talk Lipstick RiRi Fall 2013 Collection Review

    I usually am not a sucker for collections from Mac especially since they release one every time you blink and eye, however I am a huge fan of Rihanna's style and music so decided to check this collection out (yes, yes groupie love lol).
    This collection is called RiRi Hearts and includes four lipsticks, two eyeshadow quads, some lip liners, bronzers, blushes, eyeliners, and mascaras.
    I am a huge blush girl and am currently in the market for some neutral eye shadows however I was a little disappointed in the collection because the colours looked more summery and the tones where not dark skin girl friendly to me. (crying inside)
    There is so much hype over the collection but I decided that I was only interested in purchasing two lipsticks: RiRi Woo and Talk that Talk. I ended up skipping RiRi Woo because it looked way too similar to Ruby Woo to me. I ended up purchasing Talk that Talk lipstick.

    My thoughts on Talk that Talk:

    • Talk that Talk is a deep dark rich plum with a retro matte finish (Mac's new Matte formula)
    • Gives an opaque finish on the lips and has great pigmentation and colour payoff
    • Formula is very dry on the lips so be sure to exfoliate and moisturize your lips well with a balm/ lip primer
    • Lipstick is slightly patchy so you may need to use a lip brush for even application 
    • Lipstick stains lips so lasts for hours even through eating and drinking
    • The lipstick comes in a beautiful rose gold box with Rihanna's signature and the packaging of the lipstick is beautiful with the same matching rose gold bullet
    • Talk that Talk is paired well with dark liners like Vino,  or Nightmoth 
    • Lipstick can be purchased at any free standing Mac store as of Sept 26th, online on Mac's website Sept 30th and all department stores Oct 3rd (there was a little confusion surrounding this)
    • Lipstick retails for $20 CAD (little more then lippies that are $18 CAD in regular package)
    • All in all I am in love with the lipstick and it is making a perfect debut in my fall lipstick collection 
    • I believe this is the most exciting lipstick in the entire collection
    • This lipstick shade is best suited for tan and dark skinned ladies
    • If you own Mac's Media, or OCC Black Dahlia lipstick they are very similar to each other (Black Dahlia is a bit more glossy and less matte/ as well as darker) 
    Pictured Wearing Talk that Talk (Light clear lipgloss added)
    Take a look at my video! I do swatches of the lipstick and mention it in my go to products!

    Sunday, September 22, 2013

    Bold and Brazen: Review of Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Powder Duo

    So I gave into the hype and decided to try some Anastasia eyebrow products. Anastasia is renowned for perfecting eyebrows everywhere and sells eyebrow products to help makeup lovers everywhere achieve perfectly shaped brows.
    I have been trying to get the perfect shape for my eyebrows for the last few months but have had no success. I decided to close my eyes to the $30 CAD price tag and cross my fingers and buy it from Sephora. I purchased the shade Ebony which is one of the darkest colours in her range.



    My Thoughts on Anastasia's Brow Powder Duo:

    • Anastasia's eyebrow duos come in 7 different shades, I purchased Ebony which is a deep neutral brown
    • The brow duo comes with two different shades that allows for brows to look soft and natural (lighter colour is for the beginning of the brow, darker colour for the rest of brow)
    • Comes in a small black case with Anastasia's signature and a small mirror handy for eyebrow application on the go
    • Powder is silky smooth and as promised is smudge proof and stays on the brow all day
    • The lighter colour is great to apply to front end of brow to prevent a overdone and fake looking brow
    • The darker colour is great for filling in gaps in my eyebrows and providing a natural look as well
    • There are many colours to choose from and the Anastasia website gives suggestion based on hair colour
    • This brow duo can be purchased at Sephora as well as Anastasia's website
    • Brow duo is a little on the pricey end $30 CAD but worth it because very little product needed (will last a year or so)
    • Best way to apply the powder with an angle brush and brush spooly through to spread out product

    Saturday, September 14, 2013

    Flat Out Fabulous Literally: Mac Retro Matte Lipstick Review

    Mac's Flat Out Fabulous 
    Mac cosmetics has released a new retro matte lipstick collection this week and I was very excited to check them out.
    Mac has introduced seven new lipsticks and lip liners in various shades and claim some will be permanent to the collection (It is still unclear which ones those are).
    The new retro matte formula is suppose to be less drying then the regular matte formula Mac has and wear much more comfortably on the lips.
    I had a look at the collection (this past Thursday) and only happened to be interested in one lipstick. I already have Ruby Woo and the other colours seemed similar to other lipsticks I currently have in my collection.
    The lipstick I purchased from the collection is: Flat Out Fabulous.
    Mac's Flat Out Fabulous Swatch 

    My Thoughts on Flat Out Fabulous:

    • This shade is a matte bright plum shade.
    • It appears more darker in the tube but applies lighter on the lips
    • The colour is very rich and applies opaque
    • The texture of the lipstick is very dry
    • The retro matte formulation is more moisturizing then Mac's regular matte line
    • The lipstick wears/looks beautifully on dark toned lips
    • Also pairs beautifully with Vino, Nightmoth, and Currant lip liners.
    • You must exfoliate heavily before wearing this lipstick because it shows all fine lines on the lips
    • You must also moisturize your lips very well before wearing this lipstick
    • The lipstick does get drier on your lips progressively through the day
    • You may want to pair with a lip gloss for additional moisture
    • This lipstick can be purchased online on Mac's website or in store
    • Flat out Fabulous retails for $18 CAD
    • This shade will suit both light skin tones as well as dark skin tones very well 
    Wearing Flat Out Fabulous with Vino lipliner 


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