Birthmas Gifts

Hello!

Today I have an interesting post for you! My friend spent her Christmas in Europe this year- we live in Canada, so this is a big deal! She stayed in London, England for a few days and spent the rest of her trip in Germany with family. Along the way, she picked up a few items that she gave to me for my “Birthmas”- a combination of my birthday- which is a month before Christmas (Nov. 23)- and Christmas! I believe she picked up the majority of my gifts in London, so unfortunately, I can’t tell you where you can get them- but I’m sure they are readily accessible! So on to the Birthmas haul:

One Direction bracelet, Gummie Bears from Paderborne, Barry M “Mini Shopping Bag”
This is one of the Barry M items that was in the bag. This is the Dazzle Dust, in 91- a beautiful silvery color!

This gorgeous nail polish (varnish) is called Raspberry and is such a beautiful dark red color on the nails!

 And now, on to the gift that I absolutely flipped over:

Yes, this is a One Direction phone case! And yes, I am 20 years old and I like One Direction!
I hope you all enjoyed looking at these gifts as much as I enjoyed opening them and using them! 
Note: The Barry M bag also came with a Glossy Tube in the color 11- Passion Pink
Nat

Product Review: Bioré Deep Cleansing Pore Strips

Hello!
A little while ago I went on a skin care kick and picked up a package of the Bioré Deep Cleanings Pore Strips. The box claims they “lock onto and pull out dirt for the deepest clean” so naturally I wanted to try them! The package that you can see below came with 8 original deep cleaning nose strips. There are also “Ultra” strength strips available for the same price- but unfortunately the box only contained 6 strips- so being the cash-strapped student I am, I went for the option with more product! They are quite easy to use. Just apply a single strip to a clean, wet nose and the glue on the strip will activate and stick to your skin all on it’s own! I must admit- they are quite cool! As they dry on your skin, they get hard (the box describes it as a “papier-mâché” kind of texture) which is when they are ready to be removed.

I used up my last 2 strips this afternoon and forgot to get a picture of what the strips actually look like, but they really do look like the picture (however, I fear that I don’t look quite as nice and happy as the model on the box)!

What I liked about the strips:
  • They did remove one or two blackheads 
  • They left my skin feeling soft
  • They were quite painless to remove
What I didn’t like about the strips:
  • I didn’t see a big difference in the amount of blackheads on my nose and chin (I’ll explain my use of them below)
  • They are quite expensive (I purchased mine on sale for about $6.99)
  • If they dry too much while on the skin they can be painful to remove
How I used the strips:
As I mentioned above I used the strips on my nose and chin. The box says to use them only on your nose, but I find that I do get blackheads on my chin as well, so I thought I would give them a try. I would use one whole strip on my nose and then cut a second strip in half (vertically) which allowed me to fit the two pieces together and cover my entire chin! I saw more of a difference on my nose than I did on my chin- which is exactly what I was expecting as these strips are made and cut specifically to be used on the nose.
I also did a little bit of research on these strips before I bought them and did read that some women had a sensitivity to the adhesive that is on the back- so I urge you to be careful and maybe test a little section of it on your nose before going all-in! (I didn’t have any issues with the adhesive, but all skin is different).

Enjoy!
Nat

Benefit’s “They’re Real” Mascara Review

So, I know I’m behind on this product, but I still wanted to review it because it is such an interesting product and I’ve seen only good reviews on both blogs and YouTube videos. I definitely waited a while before purchasing this mascara because A) I’m quite fond of my CoverGirl Lashblast Volume and B) I can’t justify $29 for a mascara (even with my employee discount, this baby rang in around $21). I did manage to find a bonus package however, that came with a full size, plus a mini travel size (that would cost about $12 on it’s own) for the same price as just the full size- so I caved and bought it.

 For those of you who don’t know, Benefit claims that “They’re Real” mascara can make your own lashes look like they are fake! Now, before you read on, I have to tell you, I have quite long and thick eyelashes to begin with- and am often asked if they are fake while wearing other mascaras. I found that this mascara worked really well when I layered it with my CoverGirl LashBlast Volume. It does look nice by itself, but I couldn’t achieve the look I was wanting while using it by itself.

What I liked:

  • Color- This mascara is offered in one color only- Jet Black. It’s not too black, but it’s not too grey either- nice for younger and older women alike.
  • The Finish -This mascara has a quite glossy finish-unlike anything I’ve used before. I like the glossy effect for when I’m wearing a totally done up eye, but when I’m just kicking around and running errands with a BB cream and some mascara on, I think it looks quite unnatural to have super glossy eyelashes. 
  • The brush. The brush is silicone. It’s quite thin and long. One great thing about this brush is that it has bristles (spikes) at the very end in order to get right into the lashes and separate them. It is suggested in the included booklet that while applying this mascara, one is to start horizontally and then flip the brush to the vertical position to help separate and curl lashes.
  • The staying power. This mascara lasted all day long. ALL DAY!! Seriously, I could put this on in the morning, go to class, then work and come home at midnight and still look like I just put my mascara on. I didn’t find this mascara under my eyes at the end of the day- meaning I didn’t turn into a panda (not that I don’t like pandas…just not on my face)
What I didn’t like or dislike (no opinion):
  • Clumping (or lack there of)- I didn’t have any issues with clumping, however, like I mentioned above, I do layer this mascara- which could have an effect on the clumping factor. However, my mom wears this as well, and she didn’t have an issue with clumping.
What I didn’t like:
  • Removing it- this was the only thing I didn’t like because I couldn’t get this mascara off to save my soul. I tried makeup removing wipes, soap and water, eye makeup remover and even Vaseline (petroleum jelly) to remove the mascara. I don’t know how Benefit suggests we remove this- but if you know, I’d love to hear what works for you!
EDIT: After using this mascara for an even longer period of time, I LOVE it. It’s still hard to get off, but I don’t mind. I usually just wear this alone now, and have found it hard to return back to my Covergirl Lash Blast!