Quick Fire Reviews

Hello again! Today I’m back with an “Empties” type post…however, I have finished a number of items that were just floating around that the post would be quite long (and probably very boring) if I was to write a through review of each item. So, instead I’ll be writing a quick little blurb on each item. Enjoy!

 From left to right:
Dove Clear Tone deodorant: AMAZING. This product is marketed towards women who have discolouration under their arms due to shaving/race. This product really made a difference in the darkness (or lack thereof) under my arms. It is also very effective as a deodorant/antiperspirant. I will be repurchasing this very soon.
Batiste Tropical Dry Shampoo: Technically, this isn’t an “empty.”I disliked it so much I couldn’t even finish it. This stuff was terrible. It smelled nice, but did nothing for my hair. It made my hair feel more dirty than it was and it was VERY white- which doesn’t look good when you’ve got brown hair. I’ve since found a dry shampoo from Dove which has become a holy grail product for me.
Sample of Clarins Toning Lotion with Iris for oily/combo skin: Great product. This sample only had about 6 uses in it, but I loved it every time I used it. Hopefully, I will be repurchasing this at some point (it has a price tag of $33 CAD)… oh no!
Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation: BEST foundation I’ve used. It isn’t oil free- which means a number of women probably won’t even look at it, but you’d never know that it wasn’t water based. It feels great on the skin, lasts through a work day and it easily blends into the skin for quick application. For a girl with combo skin, this will probably be reserved as a fall/winter/spring foundation, but I honestly can’t wait for the weather to change so I can repurchase and start using this again.

Clarins Daily Energizer Cream: Holy grail product again. I use the cream during the winter and the lotion with SPF during the summer.
Moroccan Oil Treatment: Amazing. I purchased a very mini size of this to try and I LOVE it. I have since repurchased the brand that is sold at Sally’s Beauty Supply and am less than impressed with it. I will be repurchasing Moroccan Oil as soon as I finish my One and Only Argan from Sally’s.

Urban Decay All Nighter Makup Setting Spray: Again, this isn’t really an empty…I still have a small amount of this left, but I had to decant it into a different bottle as the spray nozzle on this one is broken. I also really like this stuff. It is amazing for keeping my makeup on all night (or day!). I use this after I complete my face makeup and before I do my eye makeup. I also interchange this with UD De-Slick depending on the weather and how hot/humid it is!
Clarins Energizer Wake-Up Booster: This is my holy grail toner (and is part of the line that the cream (above) is from). I just repurchased this today. It smells amazing and it is very gentle on the skin. It is an amazing price and has plant based ingredients- what could be better?

Vichy Pureté Thermale 3 in 1 Cleansing Water: I received this as a gift for attending a Vichy training session. It is a great product. It works well for taking makeup off (even heavy eye makeup) and cleansing the skin. I used this in place of using a makeup removing towelette. I would definitely repurchase this if I was in need of a cleanser.

The Body Shop Coconut Milk Body Lotion: As much as I liked this product, I hated it. It took forever to use up. It just lasted way too long. I liked that it was very thin, and absorbed quite quickly- it also had a very pleasant scent. I won’t be repurchasing this any time soon as I have grown out of my “coconut scented everything” phase, but will keep it in mind.

Left: Marcelle Bronzing Cloths: Terrible. I only used them two times and looked like a fake tan disaster on both occasions. I did everything according the package- but it wouldn’t turn out. I will not be repurchasing these…ever. And with a price tag of $18 CAD, I’m quite disappointed.
Right: Marcelle Hydra-C Cleansing and Exfoliating Cloths: These came as a bonus with the Marcelle Bronzing Cloths…and I didn’t use all of these either. I tried them on both body and face (as they are marketed for use on face) and found that the exfoliating side was WAY to harsh for my face (and I use a VERY gritty exfoliator almost every other day). The cleaning solution they are saturated with can only be described one way. Like syrup. It smelled sweet, left my skin sticky and stung my eyes every time I tried to use them. They stink. I would not purchase these or recommend these to anyone.

St. Ives Blemish Fighting Cleaning Cloths: I bought these on a whim one night and I wasn’t disappointed. They smell quite heavily of witch hazel- which is the acne fighting ingredient in them and feel great on the skin. The cloth itself is quite rough- not something I would suggest for those who have very sensitive skin. I felt like these were not only taking my makeup off, but also cleaning my skin really well. I liked to use these when I found myself sweating a lot. I felt like they cleaned my skin and kept the bacteria and oils at bay. The cloths aren’t super moist but did a great job of taking makeup off. I will repurchase these! 
Note: There are a couple of items picture that I didn’t review- if you’d like to know about them, please let me know!

What are my summer makeup bag essentials?

Summer. Some say it’s the best time of the year…I say it’s the three months of the year where we are all caked in sweat and have makeup melting off our faces.

If you can’t tell by my description, I don’t really like summer. And it’s for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I hate sweating and being hot (I don’t know anyone who likes it, but hey, I’m sure you’re out there somewhere) and secondly, I am a type A personality. I like structure and routine- and the summer doesn’t provide that (even now that I am in charge of how I spend my summers)! But, I do LOVE the sunshine (while wearing sunscreen, of course)- so here are the products I MUST have in my makeup bag at all times throughout the warmer months.

1. A face primer. I’ve been using the Cover FX Anti-aging primer lately- and it has been working very well. It’s thinner than most silicone based primers but works just as well. I also have been using a sample of Benefit’s POREfessional primer. It also is very good but I find it has quite a heavy perfume scent that I find is deterring me from using it everyday.

2. a)A BB cream and a 2) foundation with staying power. The reason I like to have both a BB cream and a foundation is that during the days when I am not at work I feel more comfortable with a lighter coverage makeup and will often use my Maybelline Dream Fresh BB. However, if I am going to work I prefer a fuller coverage foundation that I know won’t melt off, so I’ve been reaching for Pür Minerals 4-in-1 liquid foundation. It has great coverage and claims to last 14 hours- I haven’t worn it for this long, but I can say that it lasts at least 9 hours at a time- which is a feat in the heat (hahaha, it rhymes).

3. Mattifying powder. I have been using Rimmel London’s Stay Matte powder for years and it’s the best one on the market, in my opinion.

4. A long wearing blush. I’ve been reaching for Tarte’s Amazonian Clay blush in Dollface for the last few months, and although I don’t think it lives up to the claims of lasting for 12 hours, it does last through the heat and a little bit of sweating- so it’s making the cut this summer!

5. A makeup setting spray. I’ve been using De-slick by Urban Decay as the last step in my face makeup  (not including eyes) and it works wonders. I can’t say enough good things about this product. It really helps to mattify the skin and keeps my makeup on for at least 9 hours at a time.

6. Eye primer. Urban Decay’s Primer Potion is made of magic. I’m sure of it. It keeps my eye shadow from creasing-even on the hottest days. I’ve been using Benefit’s Stay Don’t Stray lately- as I’ve run out of my UDPP, but it is NO comparison. I would rather not wear eyeshadow than have it crease with SDS. It’s definitely a product I will not be purchasing (I received it as a gift).

7. Pretty lip color with SPF. I don’t spend a lot of time outside, but I always like to have an SPF in my lip colour during the summer. I’ve been reaching for Maybelline’s Baby Lips which sport and SPF of 20, as well as LOreal’s Balms- which also contain an SPF.

You’ll notice that I didn’t include a sunscreen…that’s because I don’t usually wear a sunscreen on my face unless I am going to the beach. My moisturizer and foundation(s) have SPF in them, so I don’t worry about a separate sunscreen for the majority of summer days. You may also notice that I didn’t include any eye makeup- and thats for the simple reason that everyone likes something different. I don’t wear waterproof mascara

What do you like to keep in your summer makeup bag? Does it change through the seasons? Why do you chose what you like to keep and what gets set aside for the season?

Beginners Makeup Kit- What should you buy first?

One of my favorite parts of working in a cosmetics department is when women come in and ask me to help them pick out a “starter” make up bag. Sometimes it’s for a friend, a daughter and sometimes it’s even for the woman herself. Whether you need to update your makeup or you’re looking for a list to start your new hobby, keep reading to see my recommendations!

1. The first thing you need is a super cute makeup bag! Available almost everywhere, you don’t need an expensive one- just make sure it’s one that you like! (I really like plastic lined bags that are able to be wiped out when they become dirty)
A Lancôme GWP

2. I am very much a believer in the notion that if you want to wear makeup, you should first know how to take care of your skin. That’s why I will always suggest a cleanser and a moisturizer. Any cleanser and moisturizer will do. You can choose Clean&Clear or Clarins. Whatever fits your budget! Nivea makes a great light day moisturizer that will add enough hydration for most skin types. If your skin is more combination-oily, I would suggest anything from Garnier that is from their Matte line.

Now it’s on to the make up:
1. Foundation: If your skin is:
Dry or normal: Rimmel London Wake Me Up foundation is now available in NA as well as the UK and is amazing. It has a medium coverage but can be put on in a sheer layer for a lighter coverage!

Combination-oily I would suggest the CoverGirl Clean foundation formulated for oily skin! 

Finally, if you simply want a very light coverage, a BB cream would suit you very well. It will even out the skin is quite light feeling. Personally, I love the Maybelline Dream BB.  For all foundations, your fingers will do just fine. If you feel the need to use something to put it on, try a damp makeup sponge (make sure to change it every 5 uses) and upgrade to a brush when you are able to (as sponges create a lot of unnecessary waste!)

2. Blush. If you even out your skin tone, you NEED to add some color back into it. PLEASE get a blush if your foundation is anything but a sheer coverage. Maybelline makes a great Bouncy blush. A cream blush eliminates the need for a brush- which is alway a concern for those wanting to update/start their makeup collection. If you want a powder blush, Rimmel London makes some really nice colors, as does Wet & Wild.

3. Mascara. If you don’t use foundation…or any other type of make up, use mascara. When applied correctly, mascara can make your eyes pop and completely change the way you look. I always suggest Covergirl Lash Blast Volume (in the orange tube) because it doesn’t clump and it comes in 3 colours and also comes in waterproof.

4. Lipgloss. This is completely up to you. If you’d like a clear gloss, go for it. If you’d rather something with a little bit of color, try anything from Maybelline, Revlon or even NYC or BonnieBell.

This is where my basic kit ends. I don’t think you need to wear much more than this when you are just beginning, but I’ve thought of a few others that are options and can be picked up over time. You can see them below…
5. Eyeshadow. Honestly, any neutral colors that come in a quad or trio would be more than great for starting out. Cream eyeshadows are just as great at powder, it’s more of a personal preference. Maybelline makes great Color Tattoos that last all day and that I think rival MAC paint pots.  As you become more comfortable with applying shadow and defining your eyes, you can branch out into other colors and combos. Covergirl makes some great quads, as does Wet & Wild or NYC.

6. Eyeliner. Liquid, kohl, or pencil. You may need to try different ones to find the texture that suits you and your eyes the best. I really like the Smooth liners from Annabelle. I would suggest using a dark brown, as black looks too harsh on most skin tones.

7. Concealer Used for those problem spots that your face base (foundation) just won’t completely cover. My favourites are Rimmel London’s Wake Me Up concealer and Glamoflauge by Hard Candy.