12/30/15

Drugstore Beauty Favourites from 2015

It's unbelievable how quickly a year can really fly by. It seems like just yesterday we were celebrating 2015's arrival and tomorrow we will be bidding it farewell. Although it truly is just another day passing by, New Years is also a time to reflect on the past - memories good and bad. It's also a good excuse to do a favourites post featuring some of my most used beauty items!

It's been a year of experimenting for me when it comes to beauty products, but no matter how many fancy, high-end items I tried, drugstore brands still proved to be top contenders. Therefore, I have decided to split my year-end favourites into two: drugstore and high end. Today I am gushing about budget friendly beauty buys that really knocked my socks off. So without further ado...


Essence Longlasting Lipstick in barley there!
I have no idea how the Kylie Jenner lip trend is still a thing, but I suppose you could call this super moisturizing lipstick my attempt at rocking the Kardashian sister's famous hue. It's a wearable brown with rosy undertones and looks quite flattering on the lips. The formula is smooth and buttery, but lasts for several hours, and best of all...it only costs a few bucks!

Covergirl The Super Sizer by LashBlast Mascara
I've been asked a couple of times if my eye lashes were real while wearing this mascara, which is a big deal to me because normally they're pretty average. This one definitely holds the curl like no other and makes my lashes long and lush.


I also really enjoyed the Covergirl Full Lash Bloom Mascara by LashBlast for creating soft and natural looking lashes. It's a great option for those with sensitive eyes or contact wearers.

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water
I went through multiple bottles of this magical water during 2015. I find myself using it most on lazy nights when I just want to crawl into bed and can't be bothered to wash my face. It removes all of my makeup without stripping my skin. Unfortunately my stash is dry at the moment, so I wasn't able to capture a photo, but I have done an entire post dedicated to the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water in the past. Click here if you haven't seen it.

Revlon ColorBurst Balm Stain in Honey
This lippy looks purple inside the tube, but on the lips it's quite sheer and neutral. It's an 'MLBB' (My Lips But Better) kind of colour that's so easy to apply and wears well with everything. It has a slight minty scent and moisturizing properties, making it feel more like a lip balm rather than a lipstick. I generally have this beauty tucked in a pocket of my purse and use it while on the go, especially when my pucker's feeling chapped but I still want a tint of rosiness.


LUSH Shampoo Bars
I'm not sure if LUSH would be considered drugstore or high end, but each shampoo bar costs roughly $10, which I compare to a bottle of shampoo and conditioner. I fell head over heels in love with these nifty pellets this year! They're super compact and great for travelling, last a really long time, lather better than anything I've ever tried before and leave my hair clean but conditioned at the same time. While I've tried multiple different shampoo bars, the one pictured below is Brazilliant, which contains loads of vibrant citrus oils leaving my hair smelling like a Creamsicle.


Rimmel Stay Matte Long Lasting Pressed Powder
I hit pan on this setting powder a long time ago and it's still kicking! I have dry skin, so I only use a tiny amount under my eyes and on my t-zone where I tend to get oily patches. It locks everything in place, eliminates shine and makes my pores look smaller for a flawless finish.


Well there you have it, some of my most loved, and used, affordable products from the past year. You can catch my high end beauty favourites on the other side.

Happy New Year! Celebrate it well, but as always, remember to be safe.

xxx

12/23/15

Happy Holidays and Plaid Nails

'Tis the season to be jolly and joyous...FA LA LA! There's only two more sleeps 'till Christmas!

I haven't been able to get the Muppet song out of my head, and I'm probably driving everyone around me bonkers, but I'm so stinking excited for the next few days! Family dinners with to-die-for food, wine flowing like water, present bows and wrapping paper flying around the room like Harry Potter on his broomstick, and let's be serious...smiles and laughter shared with the people I love. This is what I look forward to year after year when Christmas comes around.

Today's post is going to be the last one before December 25 arrives, so before we get into the festive nail design, I want to send you all my warmest wishes for the holiday season. I hope your Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa - whichever holiday you celebrate - is filled with happiness and love.

I saw this Pretty in Plaid nail art idea while scrolling through Pinterest a little while ago, and thought it looked so neat and festive, so I decided to try it out myself! I used OPI's The Thrill of Brazil for the red base and OPI's Here Today...Aragon Tomorrow, a deep (almost black) olive green colour, over the top.


I used a small dotting tool to create the boxes on each nail and used a nail striper to create thin, diagonal lines connecting them together. I made a mistake by not leaving some areas blank, but I still like the end result.  


Happy Holidays!! 

xxx

12/20/15

Top 5 Nail Colours for Winter

Although I recently started a series featuring five favourite lip colours for each season, I somehow managed to skip winter last year when I wrote my top five nail colour posts. Since my pucker normally sports the same hues during fall AND winter, I thought I would rewind a little and share with you my five favourite nail polish choices for the frosty season.

Ps. If you missed my five favourite lip colours for fall post, click here.

Coincidentally, all of these nail polishes happen to be by OPI. It's honestly my preferred brand of nail polish, period.

OPI Ski Teal We Drop
I still love to wear colour during winter, just in darker tones. This beautiful polish combines blue, green and grey to make a deep teal cream. It's so rich and can be worn with anything! For some reason it reminds me of a chunky knit scarf. It's definitely a sophisticated way to wear blue, because sometimes brights can be a little tacky...


OPI Dutch'ya Just Love OPI
Unfortunately I think this colour is discontinued. It was part of the Holland collection in 2012. It's a deep plum with subtle golden and red shimmers throughout. The formula is super opaque and applies smoothly with just one coat, but I apply two for good measure.


OPI The Thrill of Brazil
With Christmas and New Years smack dab at the beginning of winter, it seems quite appropriate to wear a festive red. This nail polish in my opinion is perfect - not too deep, not too orange - a simple, but classic red. I think a statement, poppy nail is wearable during any time of the year. It reminds me of Marilyn Monroe and old Hollywood glamour - definitely feminine and sexy!


OPI Lincoln Park After Dark
At first glance, this 'cult favourite' nail colour looks black, but stare a little harder and it's evident that there is an eggplant/plum undertone. It's dark and grunge-y without being too gothic. I think ebony shades like this were frowned upon at first and deemed inappropriate for the workplace. But in my opinion, if paired with the right outfit, this nail colour can be quite sophisticated and modern. Plus, Linoln Park After Dark is purple, not black - so it's different!


OPI Yoga-ta Get This Blue
Don't OPI polishes have the cutest names?! I can picture this deep shimmery navy colour on my nails as I sip champagne and count down to midnight on New Years Eve. It's super shiny and glamourous and really does remind me of a midnight sky during winter time.


Please don't mind the cut on my index finger in these photos. I will, however, suggest to be extra careful while wielding a knife to cut watermelon if you're running late for work...

Here's hoping winter will be mild and short! I do love wearing these vampy colours, but I also can't wait to slap on some neons! Actually...I just can't wait for sunshine and warmth!

xxx

12/17/15

Sugar Plum Eyeshadow With A Pop Of Evergreen And Double Winged Liner

Last year I posted a classic Christmas look with a shimmering smokey eye and bold red lip. This year I wanted to do something a little more atypical. As the title would suggest, this vibrant, but still holiday appropriate look, is inspired by sweet sugarplums and piney evergreens. 


I used a variation of purples on the eyelid, with deeper tones blended throughout the crease and outer corner. A deep green, blown-out along the lower lash line really helps to make the eyes pop. I really love how the two tones contrast, yet still work together. 

The eyes are quite colourful and bold already, but I wanted to make it even more interesting by doing a double winged liner. It was my first time trying this trick and I am impressed at how easy it was to achieve. I attacked it as if I were applying my liquid eyeliner as usual, but angled the first flick a little lower than I normally would so that it stuck out straight rather than angled up from my lower lash line. I then went above this line and used it as a guide to add another flick.


From a distance it looks like extra thick lashes on the outer corners, but up close and personal it's pretty cool to look at as well!

Face:

Eyes:
  • Buff (all over lid)
  • Plum (crease and outer corner)
  • Snow (inner corner and brow bone)
bhcosmetics 88 Matte Eyeshadow Palette (purple on lid and green on lower lash line)
xxx

12/14/15

December's Birchbox - See What's Inside

Christmas came early! At least, that's what it felt like when this pretty package arrived on my doorstep. 


 This month Birchbox sent along products to help everyone get ready for the Holidays. 


What's Inside:

Coastal Scents styleEYES Eyeshadow Palette - socialEYES (Full size = $16)
"A bold, beautiful eye shadow palette in alluring smoky tones."

These two shadows are just a sample of colours that have been curated into a mini, purse friendly, palette. The charcoal grey and nearly black hues are quite shimmery, but pack lots of pigment. I just wish they had sent more wearable colours for everyday looks, but these will definitely come in handy when creating a smokey eye for a night out. 

Lord & Berry Pailettes Eye Pencil - Black (Full size = $24)
"This blend able pencil from the Italian brand is studded with bits of silver shimmer."

Sparkles around Christmas and New Year's just makes sense, so I think this creamy black eye liner with flecks of silver glitter is genius! It glides nice and smooth along the waterline, has pretty good staying power and adds a subtle glimmer to the eyes. 


My Daughter Fragrances Always Loved (Full size = $85)
"Notes of Bulgarian rose oil and Turkish rose mingle with cedar, bitter cocoa, and patchouli for a romantic scent."

This sweet, feminine perfume combines notes of Bulgarian rose oil and Turkish rose absolute. Founder, Janey Ganson says "if a cowgirl went to Paris, she'd come back smelling like Always Loved." It's got a great balance of floral and warm undertones. 

Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle (Full size = $26)
"Best-selling elixir that locks in colour, protects from heat damage, and adds silkiness."

This tiny product is a jack of all trades. When used as a leave-in conditioner, it not only helps detangle hair so a brush can gently glide through, it also tames frizz and fly-aways. It can protect against damage from hot tools, like a straightener, and adds shine and silkiness. It's also 100% vegan, which I think is a pretty cool little detail too.  

amika Perk Up Dry Shampoo (Full size = $26)
"Weightless spray in the brand's signature Obliphica scent that refreshes hair sans residue."

My cousin (also my hairdresser) introduced me to the amika line a long time ago. I fell in love, but it is quite expensive and for that reason I never went out to buy one for myself. I was thrilled to see this cute, miniature version in my Birchbox this month because it really is an amazing dry shampoo! It doesn't leave any residue and smells divine. 

All in all, I think this box was awesome! As always, there was a good variety of products and I can't wait to use them up. 


Ps. Meet my newest fury friend! Dev and I are cat-sitting for a few weeks and this little guy was just desperate for his 15 minutes of fame. How cute is he though?!

xxx

12/10/15

Colourful and Festive Ombre Polka Dot Tree Nails

Unfortunately I won't be doing 12 Days of Festive Nails this year. I had a blast doing it last December, but this time around I wanted to dedicate the month to a variety of different post topics. I do, however, have a few festive nail art ideas planned to share with you, including this colourful ombre polka dot tree. 


Reds and greens are nice, but I wanted to do something bright and colourful, yet still Christmas appropriate. I chose orange and purple and really love how the two look together. 

I've done a post on how to create ombre nails with a makeup sponge before. (If you haven't seen it, click here). It's actually super easy! Simply paint colours, in the order you want them to appear, directly onto the sponge and use it to stamp your nails. 


For the tree, I went in with a dotting tool and created rows of polka dots in the same gradient colour pattern. The dots taper to a point achieving a christmas tree shape. I also glued a star stud to top it off - I think it is the perfect finishing touch. 

I hope you guys like this nail design as much as I do! 

xxx

12/3/15

November 2015 Beauty & Lifestyle Favourites

We have bid farewell to yet another month, and now the countdown is on! Christmas Eve is in exactly three weeks!!! But before I get to excited and consumed by everything Holly, Jolly and Bright - here are my favourites from the month of November.

Favourite Beauty Products:
LOC One & Done Shadow Stick in On Point
I've used this shadow stick nearly every day since I received it in my November Birchbox. Whether applied all over the lid or just as a pop of highlight in the inner corner, the colour is absolutely stunning and stays put all day long. I love it for busy days when I just need to get out the door and don't have too much time to focus on my makeup.


Essence Cosmetics Gel Eye Pencil Waterproof in Cocoa Bean
I'm really into brown eyeliner lately! It's not quite as harsh as black and really compliments any eyeshadow look. This formula itself is really creamy, smudges easily and seems to stay in place on my waterline fairly well. I also really like the twist up packaging. Bonus, it cost me three loonies.


DAVIDsTEA Santa's Secret Tea-Infused Lip Butter
Who would have thought a tea chain could do lip balm so well?! Infused with tea - of course - and hints of vanilla and peppermint, it smells pretty edible (save it for your beak, not your belly). It's also extremely smooth and hydrating. Furthermore, I love the shape! It's oval and for some reason much more enjoyable to apply than typical rounded chopsticks.  



Lifestyle Favourites:
Yoga Studio by Modern Lotus App
My Dad recently introduced me to this yoga app (he got it as a free download months ago). It features 10, 15, 30 and 60 minute classes at either a beginner, intermediate or advanced level and can be sorted based on target areas (i.e. strength, flexibility, relaxation, etc.). It really makes finding time to workout a breeze. Plus, being surrounded only by living room furniture means I don't have to worry about the clothing I wear or how much deodorant I put on.  Occasionally an excited pooch confuses yoga for play time, but it's all fun and games at the end of it.


Adele 25 CD
Adele is definitely my girl crush of the moment! She's so sophisticated and beautiful...but damn, that voice! Dev bought me her newest CD a couple of weeks ago and I've been belting out her lyrics while cruising the streets of my hood ever since. My favourite songs are Send My Love (To Your New Lover), I Miss You and Water Under the Bridge.

Starbucks Gingerbread Tea Latte
I'm obsessed with Starbuck's newest holiday release!! It's a black tea with gingerbread aromas, topped with steamed milk a sprinkle of cinnamon for good measure. It's not too sweet and definitely has a little bit of spice to it - excellent for warming up on a frosty day.

Are you enjoying these monthly favourite posts? I'm definitely having fun writing them! Until next time...

xxx