Hi and welcome to my little corner of the internet. I'm Samantha, a beauty junkie who used to live in the Toronto area, now living in the Montreal area. Love trying new brands, new looks and new products.
The Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops were an items that I've been eyeing for quite some time. But with 9 different colours to choose from, choosing just one proved to be quite the task, specially at $52 a piece. So when Cover Fx released a mini 4-piece set for the holidays, this was the perfect time to try them out.
Custom Enhancer Drops are a liquid highlighter. They can be used on the face as a regular highlighter, mixed in with your foundation to give you entire face a dewy look or applied to the body, either directly or mixed with your favourite lotion. You can also use them on your eyes or lips to add a little sparkle. All you have to do is use your imagination.
Just like their full-size counter parts, these liquid highlighters are housed in a glass bottle with a dropper, making it easier for you to dispense the desired amount.
The liquid formula is amazing, however can be a little tricky if you're not used to it as it does dry quickly. When used as a highlighter, it's best applied with a brush, or a damp sponge. You can also use your fingers if you want it to stand out more. Whichever application method you prefer, the effect is buildable.
This mini set includes Celestial, Halo, Moonlight and Rose Gold. While these shades are universally flattering, the lighter shades work great during Winter months, or those of a lighter complexion, meanwhile the darker shades are perfect for Summer.
L to R: Celestial, Halo, Moonlight, Rose Gold
Of the four, I found that Halo seemed to be a little more on the thin/runny side, but not by much.
Celestial is my current favourite. It's a soft pink that blends nicely with my skin tone.
Halo is best described as a white base with a blue iridescent sheen to it. The website calls is holographic, but not quite.
Moonlight is a medium gold with brown undertones. This worked the least for me, but I blame that on the current lack of a tan.
Rose Gold is a rosey copper. While the colour is gorgeous, I had hopped it would be a little less copper. I think mixed with Celestial, and this colour would be perfect.
If I had to buy one of these full-size, it would be Celestial. I've recently noticed Blossom, which looks like it would be an amazing colour as well!
I want nothing more than to be sipping a drink from a coconut, poolside with the warm sun on my skin. But, it's the middle of winter, so I'm not getting that warm sun anytime soon. However, I can enjoy coconuts and smooth skin, thanks to Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula.
The new line includes Body Oil, Body Lotion and Body Cream, and each product contains raw coconut oil, tahitian monoi, sweet almond oil and vitamin E. The combination smells divine and leaves your skin feeling smooth and nourished.
My favourite, is by far the Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula Body Oil. Despite the fact that it's formulated with other oils, including Argan Oil, it absorbs quickly and leaves my skin with a hydrated glow. I love using it right out of the shower!
Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula Body Lotion is perfect for that everyday moisture. When you want to keep up the moisture you already have and you know that these lovely winter months can cause dry skin if you're not careful.
And when your skin needs that extra boost of hydration? Then Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula Body Cream is just the thing that'll sooth and return moisture to those dry spots. Combined with macadamia, shea, mango and cocoa butters, this is a nice thick consistency. Since having a baby, I've had a few very, very dry spots and using this on a regular basis on those spots has helped tremendously!
You can get the new Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula line at Walmart for $5.99 - $7.99. But, isn't it better to win some instead?
That's right, I'm giving 3 of my Canadian readers the opportunity to win all three Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula products: body oil, body lotion and body cream. All you have to do is follow the instructions below and enter using the Rafflecopter form.
- Only Canadian residents are eligible
- Giveaway will be open for 2 weeks, ending on January 31 at 11:59pm EST
- No giveaway accounts
- I will be double checking entries
- Once winners have been selected, they will be contacted via email and will have 48 hours to provide me with their mailing address. Failure to do so within this time frame will result in forfeit and a new winner selected in their place.
Now that Christmas is over, are you looking to spend your gift cards or want to try some new skincare? Value sets are the perfect way to try new products, get some deluxe samples of your favourite items or get bonus items with something that you were planning on buying anyways! Here are my fave sets this year from Fresh.
Holiday Glow Skincare Set
This set includes a mini of their Soy Face Cleanser, which is a gentle makeup remover/cleanser. While I still think you should use a cleanser after (if you're wearing full makeup), it does a great job at removing what you're wearing without leaving a film or any dryness.
Also included is the Sugar Face Polish. This stuff feels so good on the skin. Smells amazing and is a gentle enough exfoliator/mask combination to use it about 3 times a week. Lastly, a tube of their Instant Glow Luminizer is in this set as well. Not quite a highlighter, this is a moisturizer with a very fine micro shimmer. It gives a nice glow when worn alone, but in order to get more of a highlighter effect, it would have to be layered.
Sugar Lip Prep 'n' Paint Set
Another awesome set is their Sugar Lip Prep 'n' Paint set. This set contains 5 lipcare essentials, including the Sugar Lip Serum Advanced Therapy. The serum is used to soften skin around your lips and reduce the signs of aging. It feels quite nice and I've noticed my lips seems to be softer the morning after using it.
The Sugar Lip Polish should be a staple in everyone's makeup bag. This scrub is simple and it works. It gently exfoliates and removes the dried skin. Bonus points: It tastes good too!
Also included are the Sugar Rosé Tinted Lip Treatment and Sugar Lip Treatment Advance Therapy. While both are moisturizing, protecting and smoothing, the r Rosé leaves a tint and the Advanced Lip Therapy is like the serum: helps smooth out fine lines and wrinkles.
Enriched with vitamins E and C, the Sugar Cream Lip Treatment is used to moisturize and smooth lips while leaving a light nude shimmer. Looks good used on its own or applied over some lip colour.
Now, I'm not quite sure why, but both sets include 2 small colouring pencils. You can colour the box, or the piece of paper that comes in the Sugar Lip Prep 'n' Paint set. I guess it's meant as a way to relax.
2017 has been quite the year. And while I'm a little sad that it's gone, I can't wait to see what 2018 has in store! It's time to take a look at some of my favourite beauty items from the past year.
1. Laura Mercier Eye Art Palette I debated about this palette for nearly a year before I bought it. When I finally did buy it, it was love. Absolutely no regret. Except not buying it earlier. Colours are amazing (specially African Violet!) and blend flawlessly. I'm anxiously waiting for another palette from her.
2. Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen It took me a while before I tried this pencil liner since I practically don't use pencil liners anymore. This is one of very, very few that actually don't transfer or smudge on me. So while I get re-acquainted with pencil liners, this has been my trusty go-to.
3. Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops Been absolutely loving the versitility of liquid highlighters. Mix a little in moisturizer for a natural glow-from-within, or use on it's own to bring out bone structure or use on the eyes.
4. Pixi Glow Mud Cleanser This is a light mud cleanser that acts as a chemical exfoliant. It leaves my face feeling clean, but not tight, and moisturizer absorbing wonderfully. This is my second tube.
5. Lancome Monsieur Big Mascara I've already ranted and raved about this mascara. It's my holy grail. I already have a backup, and asked for another one for Christmas.
6. Stila Magnificent Metals Glitter and Glow Liquid Eye Shadow I bought this for a New Years look I created, and did not have high expectations. Liquid eyeshadow has always been a disaster on me (creasing within 2 minutes) and I usually stay very far away. This is a game changer. It didn't budge for over 12 hours and I didn't experience any fall out! My eyelids were like shiny disco balls, and I loved it!
7. Quo Brush Cleaner Anything to make life easier! The Quo Brush Cleaner does just that. It cut down my brush cleaning time in half and I feel like my brushes get a much better, deeper clean.
8. OGX Keratin Oil Instant Repair Weightless Healing Oil I've used quite a few oils on my hair over the years, but none have actually given me the same results as this. The OGX Keratin Oil comes in a spray, which makes application much more even. After application, my hair feels smoother and looks shinier and healthier. Just completely gorgeous!
9. Lines of Elan Organic Sugar Body Scrub If you've been reading my blog, you'll notice that this has been a definite favourite. It smells amazing and leaves skin feeling smooth and moisturized. Plus it's organic and made in Canada.
10. Palmer's Coconut Oil Body Oil Didn't take me long to fall in love with this product. Not only does it smell like real coconut (not that fake stuff), it keeps me nicely moisturized and skin looking good. Perfect year-round.
This year, I wanted a simple New Year's resolution that would be (hopefully) easy to keep, and one that had a big impact on just about everything I did. With having a child, house, planning a wedding and a blog, I want to be organized. I want to make the most out of my time. So, I went the "old school" way, and got myself a planner.
Planners today aren't what they used to be. There's a big planner world out there with different types of planners, stickers, washi tape... and the list goes on. It's almost like a cult following! While all the stickers and die-cuts are pretty to look at, they're not necessary. But, they sure do make things much more fun and interesting, and makes you want to look at your planner.
Both sizes have inspirational quotes or pretty designs on the monthly separators
All that's really needed is a planner and a writing aparatus. This is the Me & My Big Ideas (MAMBI) Happy Planner in classic and mini. I decided to go for two of them, in different sizes, so that I can test the two sizes out, and to keep different aspects of my life separate.
Inside of the classic and mini Happy Planners
In my case, the larger one is for everything household and family related (appointments, things I plan on doing, cleaning schedule, etc). The smaller one is strictly for the blog. I'm still on the fence about which of the two I should use for wedding related things.
You don't need this many sticker books... but they are fun!
When I first bought the planners, I got suckered in with all the stickers. At nearly $30 a book, 8 books is a little overkill for a beginner, even if I did get everything on sale. Thank you Michael's coupons and sales!
The combination of functional and decorative stickers makes you want to look at the planner
Some stickers are super functional, like To Do stickers, but a lot are purely for decoration, like quotes or full box images. But it's the combination of both that keeps me wanting to look at my planner and stay on track. Seriously, if I bought these stickers, I'm going to use them, and if I'm going to use them, I better look at them!
I actually bought more washi since this picture.... oops!
Oh, and the washi tape? You don't need this many. I haven't found a functional use for them yet, just purely decoration. But again, it's fun!
Washi along perforated edge
A spread with washi, functional and decorative stickers
So that's my theory on why this is a good, feasible resolution for me. Because I can decorate it, it's pretty, and it will keep me organized with everything!
Once Christmas is out of the way, it's time to think about New Years! It's always a fun time to get dressed up, maybe go to a nice dinner, or maybe just hang out with family and friends. Whatever your plans are, you want to ring in the new year looking good, and with a little bling, and I got just the look for you!
Since I recently purchased Stila's Glitter & Glow Liquid Eye Shadow in Diamond Dust, I knew I had to create a NYE look with it. And here it is!
Here's what I used
1. Becca Backlight Priming Filter 2. Too Faced Born This Way Naturally Radiant Concealer 3. Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation in R230 4. Make Up For Ever Microfinish Powder 5. Lancôme Blush Subtil in Miel Glacé 6. Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops in Moonlight
7. wet n wild Photofocus Eyeshadow Primer 8. Laura Mercier Eye Art Eyeshadow Palette: Vanilla Nuts, Plum Smoke and Violet Ink 9. Sigma Flare Eyeshadow Palette: Gossip 10. Stila Glitter & Glow Liquid Eye Shadow in Diamond Dust 11. Physicians Formula Sexy Booster Cat Eye Collection Liquid Eyeliner 12. Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara 13. Physicians Formula Eye Booster Instant Lash Extension 14. Maybelline Lash Sensational 15. Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow in Soft Brown
16. Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Re-Shape and Re-Size Liner in Pillow Talk 17. Bite Beauty High Pigment Pencil in Rhubarb 18. Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops in Halo
I used Vanilla Nuts all over the eyelid, followed by Plum Smoke in the crease working my way up. Then Gossip into the crease, blending up and into Plum Smoke, but not going quite as high. Violet Ink was used next, again in the crease, and very lightly blended into Gossip. Diamond Dust was then applied to the eyelid, careful to just meet the crease, not go into it.
Here's a beautiful neutral look to wear to your Christmas get-together. Whether it's visiting the grandparents or having some drinks with friends, this simple look is perfect for all occasions, and can easily take you from day to night.
1. Nivea 2-in-1 Moisturizing Primer
2. Too Faced Born This Way Naturally Radian Concealer
3. Physicians Formula #InstaReady Super BB
4. Make Up For Ever Microfinish Powder
5. Lise Watier Variations De Nude Multi Colour Blush
6. wet n wild Photofocus Eyeshadow Primer
7. Kat Von D Shade + Light Eye Contour Palette: laetus, samael, solas, sytry and lucius
8. Lancôme Monsieur Big mascara
9. Pixi Endless Brow Gel Pen
10. Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy Lip Treatment
11. wet n wild Liquid Catsuit in Rebel Rose
12. Becca Liquid Crystal Glow Gloss in Champagne Dream X Bellini
13. Urban Decay All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray
Applied laetus all over eyelid, samael on middle & outer lid (avoid inner corner). Blend solas on outer lid and lightly in the crease, and sytry in the outer V. Finish with lucius on the brown bone.
Got someone on your naughty list that deserves a lump of coal in their stocking? How about some charcoal beauty products. I've got 10 charcoal products for the beauty lover in your life.
1) Yes to Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Face Wipes From masks to scrubs to cleansers, Yes To has about a dozen products in their charcoal lines. While I haven't tried them all, you can bet that your naughty recipient has never used black facial wipes before.
2) Peter Thomas Roth Irish Moor Mud Purifying Black Mask This mask is pretty awesome. Aside from the fact that it's completely black, it's also odorless. And unlike most mud masks, this doesn't leave your skin feeling tight and dry. It's actually quite hydrating and leaves skin feeling smooth and refreshed, all while drawing out skin's impurities.
3) Lines of Elan Pink Clay + Charcoal Soap* For that person who likes using natural and organic products, here's something designed for all over the body. I've already talked about this soap here, however This Lines of Elan Pink Clay + Charcoal Soap pulls out impurities from the pores and the pink clay soothes. It's great for everyone, including those with sensitive skin.
4) L'Oréal Pure-Clay Cleanser: Energizing & Brightening This clay-to-mousse cleanser is great for oily or combination skin and doesn't leave the skin feeling super dry. When it's first squeezed out onto your hand, it's more like a clay/gel texture, but add a little water, and it transforms into a mousse. It's like magic! And who doesn't want a little magic in their stocking... even if it's charcoal.
5) Glamglow Bubblesheet Oxygenating Deep Cleanse Mask You may not understand why she's putting a sheet on her face, and you don't think she needs one, but it's part of her Friday routine and she loves it. Glamglow is a top name for face mask users, so why not get her one that she'll love. It does a deep clean AND bubbles on her face. That's right. It bubbles. Again, it's like magic!
6) 7th Heaven Charcoal Peel-Off Mask* Another mask. Let's face it, even naughty people need to be pampered sometimes. Peel-Off masks are amazing. Less messy, gets the job done. And guess what? There's something fun about removing them.
7) Sephora Collection Micellar Cleansing Water & Milk-Charcoal Micellar waters are makeup-removers and facial cleansers in one. While I always recommend a two-step cleanse, this can be used for those quick, tired days where you just want to hit the bed. Plus with the charcoal, it helps to purify and detoxify the skin.
8) Boscia Detoxifying Black Cleanser I already own more cleanser than I need but each time it's available, I get this with my purchase from Sephora. It warms on contact with your skin to open and de-clog pores. It's great for anyone with excess oil, whether it be used all over or just as a spot treatment.
9) Biore Deep Cleansing Charcoal Pore Strips Most girls (and secretly, guys too!) use the Biore nose strips at least once a month. These charcoal strips are the same thing, but stronger than the regular ones. They remove more gunk and oil from the pores and is the perfect tool in anyone's arsenal. 10) Lines of Elan 100% Natural Charcoal Deodorant Cream* Just because they're getting charcoal, doesn't mean that their Christmas has to stink! Get them this all natural deodorant cream by Lines of Elan. While it may seem "weird" to apply it with your fingers, this bergamot and lime deodorant helps neutralize odors, leaving the wearer smelling nice, yet not overpowering (or powdery). Gym and snow shoveling tested.
*Items were provided for consideration. All opinions are my own
Looking for ideas on what to get the beauty lover on your list this year? They've been good all year, so they deserve something pretty sweet if you ask me. Check out my top __ items for the beauty enthusiast in your life.
Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops Set This set of 4 mini liquid highlighters can be used under, over, or mixed into foundation or even moisturizer to give that glow-from-within look. Celestial, Halo, Moonlight and Rose Gold are perfect year-round and are sure to be a hit with the lucky recipient.
Real Techniques Makeup Sponges No makeup kit is complete without sponges. Real Techniques has some amazing sponges, such as their Dual-Ended Expert Sponge and their Mini Miracle Complexion Sponges. And let's not forget the Miracle Cleansing Sponge. Why so many sponges? They all have their purposes: Dual-Ended is for seamless blending of foundation and contour, the minis are perfect around the nose or concealer under the eyes and on-the-go touch ups, and the cleansing sponge gently exfoliates while you use your favourite cleanser. They're all needed.
Bite Beauty Agave Kisses Set Hoping to meet someone under the mistletoe? No one wants to kiss chapped lips, so why not help them achieve super smooth, moisturized lips with this Agave Kisses Set by Bite Beauty? The set includes everything needed for smooth lips: Agave Lip Mask, Agave Balm and Agave Sugar Scrub.
Lancome Monsieur Big Mascara I've already mentioned how much I love this mascara here, and I honestly thing everyone needs this in their stocking. Great brush and a formula that stays in place yet easy to remove. Lashes look amazing! Seriously a must have.
Pixi Ultimate Beauty Kit 4th Edition One of many great items from Pixi's holiday collection, the Ultimate Beauty Kit (4th Edition), is perfect for the girl who likes options. With a choice of 48 eyeshadows (brights and neutrals), 2 Glow-y Powders (highlighters), 2 Beauty Blush Duos and 2 Beauty Bronzers, it's easy to create and endless amount of looks, all in this cute book.
EcoTools Ultimate Shade Duo An artist is only as good as their tools, so why not give them EcoTools Ultimate Shade Duo. These eyeshadow brushes are super soft and make application and blending a breeze. Plus, you can feel good about these brushes since the handles are made of renewable bamboo and the package is made of 100% tree-free paper! Oh, and they're cruelty free and vegan.
Lines of Elan Sugar Scrub 100% natural, the Lines of Elan Sugar Scrub smells like brown sugar and cinnamon yet leaves the skin feeling smooth and moisturized. The perfect gift for a Secret Santa... or yourself.
I Love... Bath Fizzer With all the holiday parties, gatherings, and food, sometimes we just need to relax. Whether you're the one in need of relaxing or your recipient is, it's been a long year, and you deserve it! Use one of these bath fizzers from I Love... Cosmetics. Availble in some super yummy scents (like this Raspberry & Blackberry), it's sure to make a relaxing bath that much more enjoyable.
Pixi has been a drugstore favourite for quite some time. Great quality at a great price. Without disappointment, their holiday sets are just as fantastic. They are what every beauty lover needs to find under the tree. Here are some of my favourites.
Endless Silky Eye Pen Trio, $20
Eye liners transfer on me. It's just a curse I've learned to live with, unless I want to spend $25 on a single liner. That is, up until I've tried the Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen. These eye liners glide on your eyes effortlessly, look gorgeous and don't transfer. This set includes 3 minis, BlackNoir,, BronzeBeam and RoseGlow, just the perfect colours for everyone.
Skintreat Duo - Glow Tonic & Glow Mud Cleanser, $49
If you don't know about Pixi's Glow Tonic, you must be living under a rock. This toner firms and tightens the skin, while exfoliating dead skin to reveal healthy, beautiful looking skin. Combined with the Glow Mud Cleanser that leaves your skin feeling smooth and radiant, this is the perfect duo to start off the New Year.
Ultimate Beauty Kit - 4th Edition, $48
Nothing quite like a little book that has a bit of everything. From eyeshadows that can easily take you from day to night or coffee dates to romantic dates (there's 48 of them), blushes, bronzers and highlighters, this is one handy palette to have. Pigmented brights are grouped together on the left side while smooth neutrals are on the right side, making it easy to pull together any look. Great for on the go or travel
Lip Lift Max Trio, $22
For anyone who loves finishing off a look with a swipe of hydrating lip plumping gloss, this is the perfect trio. These glosses are not sticky and leave a bit of a tingly sensation. While I'm not sure if it actually plumps, it feels nice and looks great. The colours are mostly neutral, kind of the "my-lips-but-better", and a soft iridescent top coat. Perfect as a stocking stuffer!
Which Pixi product are you hoping to find under the tree this year?
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