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Man oh man, it’s been a long time since I’ve posted, eh? I’ve been having writer’s block for a while, so it’s nice to just get back into it and chat with you all. I hope you guys have/had some killer costumes for Halloween!

Today, I’m bringing you a look, and talking to you about some products that have quickly become my staples. Dermalogica Canada sent over their new pre-cleanse balm, and cleansing gel for me to test out and let you guys know what I think of them. In order to really put them to the test, I did a full on look, turning myself into a painting through the use of Make Up For Ever’s flash palette.

This look was created using only 3 brushes; sometimes simplicity is best!

D’you know what the worst thing about facepainting with grease paints is? The cleansing of course! Thats why, when Dermalogica sent these over, I was beside myself with excitement. Let’s see how I got on with them.

Precleanse Balm (with exfoliating mitt) CAD 62.00 

What They Say: “This water-activated, balm-to-oil version of our top-selling (Precleanse) deconstructs layers of excess (oil), waterproof make-up, environmental pollutants and residual product buildup on skin. Use the included Cleansing Mitt to thoroughly (exfoliate). The Natural Biolipid Complex locks in hydration and reinforces the skin barrier while Apricot Kernel Oil helps nourish skin. Ideal for normal to dry skin. Safe for use around the eye area. Formulated without artificial fragrances or colors.”

What I Think: I’ve tried different makeup melting oil balms (from Ciate, Boscia) and of the three, this is my favourite by far. It has one advantage of the Ciate  (that makes all the difference) in that it emulsifies and consequently washes off more easily. It is super effective at breaking up makeup, and it doesn’t leave an oily film on/in my eyes when removing mascara! That being said, it does need to be followed up with a cleanser, otherwise some oil residue remains.

Special Cleansing Gel CAD 52.50 

What They Say: “Soap-free, foaming gel cleanse(r). Refreshing lather thoroughly removes impurities without disturbing the skin’s natural moisture balance. Calming Balm Mint and Lavender extracts soothe the skin, while natural Quillaja Saponaria gently foams away toxins and debris. Formulated without artificial fragrances and colors.”

What I Think: I love this. I freakin’ love this. I have very dehydrated skin, so even my body washes are soap free, so it’s no wonder that this is perfect for me. The gel lathers nicely and removes the remaining oil and makeup left on the skin. Despite the double cleansing, my face doesn’t feel stripped, in fact, it feels soft and plump. I think…no, I know,  that I’ve been converted to the double cleanse method. To rinse this off, only water is needed, however I usually run a washcloth over my face ’cause I don’t want to turn my whole bathroom into a swimming pool with the ‘casually splashing my face with water’ method of removal!

You can see the makeup removal process in the pictures below, or in this video on my Instagram!

Click to view slideshow.

*items in this post sent as PR

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Bookaholic Beauty by Bookaholicbeauty - 2w ago

Oh hello there!

It’s been a hot minute eh? What can I say…Christmas sucked me in and just spat me back out again!

Now isn’t that just the most attractive visual? I hope that you all had a fabulous festive season and started off the new year on a positive note. 2018 has many good things in store for all of us, I’m sure.

Now back to beauty, which is what you came here for. If you want to start off on the right foot in terms of your skincare, I’d highly recommend checking out the Dermalogica Chalet, located at 639 Queen St. W in Toronto. It’s a pop-up that’s on until Sunday, and it has some really cool features!

If you didn’t already know, I’ve been loving Dermalogica products over the last few months; their balm and gel cleansers have become a part of my daily routine.

Consequently, when I was invited to check out the Chalet, I was thrilled! There was alcohol (so delish), appetizers (even more delish), and a really cool VR station where I tried out a couple games!

The night celebrated the launch of two new products. The Calm Water Gel and the Barrier Defense Booster.

I got my skin mapped by one of Dermalogica’s amazing aestheticians and it was a wonderful experience! Turns out I’m more normal than combo but severely dehydrated. Following the skin mapping, I had a ‘skin fit’ which is basically a mini 15 min facial. I was glowing to the gods, people. I’m definitely booking in for a 60 min facial with Dermalogica at some point this year.

If you’re interested in knowing more about these products, check back in a little while, as I’ll have a full blog post on these items up once I’ve tried them for a decent amount of time to see how they perform on my skin.

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What goes hand in hand with Christmas? Crafting, of course!

But honestly, between the baking/sweet making, and all the shopping and wrapping of Christmas presents, who has the time to make a thoughtful card?

This year, I do!

That’s because of this book, which was so kindly sent over. It’s called Christmas Paper Crafting: Holiday Cards, Gift Tags, and More! and it’s absolutely brilliant. It makes me feel like a regular ol’ Martha Stewart, but with 90% less effort.

Price: CAD 24.99 (but it’s currently CAD 17.30 on Amazon.ca right now!)

It comes packed full of designs to make:

  • 50 Christmas cards
  • 18 mini cards
  • 16 gift tags
  • 6 bookmarks
  • Envelope templates (in 2 sizes)
  • Scrapbooking paper

The colors are festive, but not so festive that they cannot be used for winter birthdays. I don’t think that these designs are only applicable for the Christmas season – they are surprisingly versatile! The graphics are a mix of traditional and modern design, combined with bright and bold colours.  All papers are archival quality, acid free, card-stock thickness. This book is for the avid crafter or the lazy crafter (ahem, me) so I sure as hell know it’s going to make my gift wrapping/giving process a lot easier!

*item(s) in this post were sent as press samples

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Let me tell you, this lipstick was one hell of a wild ride – from first impression to fully formed thoughts.

I was first intrigued by Maybelline’s Matte Ink liquid lipsticks while watching this video by Bailey B. This unique fiery orange-coral colour is right up my alley, and so on impulse, I picked it up at Walmart.

Price: CAD 11.99

Read on to see my thoughts, and a wear test!

Applicator

The applicator is a pointed doe foot, which serves well to create a crisp lip line. It can have a tendency to make the product apply slightly patchy though (if you apply too much pressure). Additionally, you’ll need to dip once or twice to cover the entirety of the lips.

Colour & First Impressions

Heroine is a gorgeous shade. It straddles the line between orange and hot pink – making it a warm coral. It’s in the same colour family as Rimmel Kate 110 (which has an atrocious formula emphasizing any and all dryness), and MAC’s Relentlessly Red. It is perfect for the summer season, particularly with bit of a healthy tan.

My first impressions of Heroine were not good. First of all, the formula exacerbates every single flake and dry patch on the lips, so if you’re not properly hydrated and prepped, I’d suggest you skip this product.

Moving beyond its emphasis on dryness, it is also hella sticky (for the first little while). DO NOT press your lips together, whatever you do. It just serves to pull up product and make it look unflattering.

Basically, apply Heroine (1-2 coats depending on your desired colour intensity), then don’t press your lips together for about 15 minutes. After that mark, the colour dries down, its stickiness slowly decreases until it ceases altogether, and then it’s actually very comfortable to wear. Unlike a totally matte liquid lip (a la ABH), this moves with the lips and therefore does not have the tendency to crack or flake. It’s sort of similar (but not quite), to Rimmel’s Provocalips (reviewed here).

Wear Test

1:00pm Freshly applied. Very sticky.

2:00pm I can still feel it on the lips, but I can press the lips together and not have them cling as much.

3:30pm The feeling of it on the lips is less obvious now. Almost all the tackiness is gone, and it has withstood drinking water perfectly (no transfer).

5:30pm Looks perfect. Feels fantastic – light, malleable; it’s actually gotten better, the longer it is on my lips.

6:00pm 2 places look patchy ’cause I had to wash my face, but it’s not very noticeable.

8:30pm Had a meal. Still feels great. Up close, my lips are starting to look a little dry – settling and separating in the lip lines.

1:45am Feels lightly drying (but nothing painful or uncomfortable, and certainly not butthole lips); not as bad as some matte liquid lipsticks.

So, to conclude this post, I really like these lipsticks. I don’t think I need or want more than one colour – but this formula is perfect for a statement shade.

Just keep in mind that your lips need to be in tip-top shape, and you need to be well hydrated, let this start to look a bit dry or flakey.

This product will break down if you eat very messy, oily foods, but on the whole, the Matte Inks have excellent longevity and I know I’ll get good use of this lipstick during the next few months!

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Ahhh, to be blessed with thick, black hair. I mean, it’s fantastic on my scalp, but on other parts of my body, not so much!

In order to get rid of my vacation beard (), I contemplated different options: tweezing, threading, waxing and sugaring. Tweezing would take…years. Threading does not get the pain over with fast enough, and wax pulls at the skin; I sure as hell do not want to encourage wrinkles. Consequently, I was left with sugaring. (Another reason is that a lot of waxes have honey in it, and my mom, sis and myself are allergic to honey the topical application of honey. Ingested, it’s delicious though.)

Sugaring is a natural hair-removal technique that dates back to 1900 BC. Unlike traditional waxing, sugaring uses a special paste made out sugar, lemon juice, and water. The paste wraps around the hair, not the skin and is supposed to make it a more gentle (take this with a grain of salt) process and the hair grows back slower and softer.

The Good

My face is so freakin’ hairless, its’ ridiculous. Honestly, so damn soft. Sugaring itself is not a messy process, and there’s no bits of the paste that remain on the skin. If there is, it’s super easy to wash off with water. Additionally, it’s very hygienic, as each client gets their own ball of the paste. I’m definitely going to do this again, because I love the results.

The Bad

It is painful. Granted, I haven’t ever waxed or threaded my face (except the brows) before so maybe my tolerance isn’t high, but man oh man, it is painful. On the plus side, that sting dissipates quite quickly. I was quite red after the process, and my face was very warm due to the blood rushing there, but it wasn’t uncomfortable or unbearable.

The Bumpy

I made a mistake. I did not do my research, or use my brain to realize that my pores would be wide open after such a process. Therefore, when I put oil on my face to soothe the redness, it clogged my skin right up and I broke out with small little pimples borne out of a skin irritation. I admit, t’was my fault rather than anything else. To not repeat my mistake, if you get sugaring done, ice the hell out of your face, and then put pure aloe vera gel on top (no additives or colourants). Keep on with that process until your face is suitably calm.

The Aftermath

The bumps went away in a couple days (phew) and I haven’t had any residual effects like discolouration or scarring or anything like that. Sugaring usually is done every 4-5 weeks depending on how fast the hair grows back and then it usually tapers off over time as the hair follicle gets damaged. Next time I don’t be sugaring my cheeks or forehead though; I think it just over exfoliated and irritated my skin. Find a good practitioner and give it a shot!

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I have a problem. A YouTube watching problem.

Speaking of being addicted to YT videos, when I saw Bailey B.’s eyes in this one, I was completely and utterly mesmerized. Turns out all that was on her lids was the Butter London Glazen Eye Gloss in Mermaid!

So guess what I’m going to talk about today? If you said that exact shade, then by gosh, you’re psychic.

Price: USD 24.00 (but I got it for half price on sale at Ulta)

Description

As you can see, the Glazen Eye Glosses are a weird jelly texture; it’s soft enough that it’ll jiggle when pressed, but not so soft that it will fall out of the pot. It’s also incredibly pigmented; a tiny dab will do you. Additionally, the product dries very quickly on the lids, so no need to worry about creasing and all that nonsense. Mermaid is a fairly unique shade, it’s got a greenish-silvery base with blue and pewter reflects, of sorts. You can see it in action below!

All in all, I adore this product. This glistening, glittery shadow is going to feature heavily in my Christmas party looks! I even have my eye on the shade Bronze to try next. Definitely pick up a colour when it’s on sale – it’s much better value, as I do think it’s a bit pricey at USD 24.00 a pop, or see if there are any holiday gift sets available (like this one).

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A good eyeshadow situation consists of many small details coming together to form a full, cohesive, well blended look. Often the shadows discussed are the quarterbacks of the makeup game; the stars of the show, so to speak.

Today, let’s talk about some of the unsung heroes who work hard at pulling together a look. Of course, these shades obviously will have to vary if you have very pale skin, or very deep skin, but for those of you who, like me, are on the medium-tan spectrum, I think they will serve you very well!

Neutral/Warm

Ok, can we talk about how the first picture looks like a giant boob?

…No, just me? Ok.

The first shadow has star placement because it’s my absolute favourite! NYX Blame it On Midnight is a very subtle step up from my skin tone, and the neutral/warm colour makes it perfect for any look.

Now on to the next three!

  • Karity Inod (review): slightly deeper than Blame it on Midnight
  • Morphe Spice (review): a very warm brown, deeper than the above two
  • Makeup Geek Chickadee (review): a unique dusty yellow

The final three are from ABH‘s Modern Renaissance palette, which I’ve reviewed here.

  • Raw Sienna: neutral/warm brown
  • Burnt Orange: warm, orangey brown
  • Golden Ochre: similar is colour depth as Blame it on Midnight, but cooler
Cool

I’ve previously compared these two here, but I’ll reiterate the fact that these are virtually dupes for one another (despite the fact they look different in these pictures).

  • Buon Fresco: dusty (rosy-leaning) purple
  • Makeup Geek Unexpected: dusty cool purple
Bright

  • Morphe Fiesta: don’t let this bright colour put you off. This is a sheer coral that’s perfect for bright makeup looks, or a warm, peachy, summer eye.
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Bookaholic Beauty by Bookaholicbeauty - 2w ago

My birthday’s coming up, Sephora’s 20% off VIB sale is in November, and companies have stared releasing their holiday offerings. Consequently, my wallet is preparing to sacrifice itself on the altar of the makeup gods.

I don’t necessarily think I can afford to pick up all the items on this list, however, this is the selection I’m working with! I’ve pondered over most of these products for many months now so it’s certainly not an impulse at this point.

Viseart Dark Mattes Palette

I’ll be honest, I have been lusting over this palette for a good year now. It is a fairly unique palette I’d say, and the shade selection is perfect for 1 shadow looks with a pop of metallic in the inner corner (or as a spotlight placement). Goddamnit, I just want to try out the famous Viseart formula already!

Natasha Denona 5 Eyeshadow Palette #9

I was so not into the hype. AT. ALL. Not only did the colours not look interesting but I thought everybody on YT was just kissing ass for the free makeup.

…then my Sephora got a Natasha Denona display, and I actually swatched this palette, along with the rest of the line. I kid you not, I audibly gasped. The pigmentation; it’s actually unreal. This palette and the Dark Mattes shall be best friends because they are yin and yang in their finishes.

Ciate Glitter Flip Siren

Temptalia

Do I need another lip colour? No. But did the magical demos of this new offering by Ciate suck me in? Hell yes. I just love the deep teal shade and who can say no to glitter?

Stila Written in the Stars Glitter & Glow Liquid Eye Shadow Set

Musings of a Muse

Speaking of glitter, check out this set. I’m not really into liquid shadows, but I’m definitely into glitter. These also have an amazing reputation at this point so I do want to try them (but they’re lower on my list of wants).

Dr. Jart Ceramidin /Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Cream

I’ve tried the Lala Retro Cream and I love it. A small sample size lasted me about 3 weeks, using it both morning and night and it’s perfect for dehydrated skin. Honestly, my skin felt like a baby’s. I’m trying a sample of the Ceramidin cream right now, and it’s a cult classic for a reason! Considering the amount of moisture it imparts, it actually has a very light texture that absorbs quickly. I’m still testing it out to see if my skin has any reactions to it, but first impressions are good.

Wayne Goss Air Brush

After years of watching Lisa Eldridge and Karima McKimmie gush over the famous Suqqu cheek brush, I was overjoyed to hear that this was a great alternative. I don’t really need another brush, and it isn’t filling a hole in my collection but holy hell, it’s made of blue squirrel and soft as ever and I want it in my hands!

BaubleBar Amber Y-Chain Necklace 

I’m kinda into lariat necklaces, and have been for a while now. This necklace in particular has been on so many YTers & fashionistas and I’ve ogled over it every single time! It’s probably the only item I have on my fashion wish list, ’cause lord knows I already have way too many clothes and shoes.

*this post includes pictures that are not my own.

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Hello, hello! Sorry for the bit of a hiatus on the blog, I’ve been on vacation for the last couple of weeks, and will continue to be a bit MIA for the next several until my vacay is over. I’m off on another solo European vacation, and if you’re curious as to where I’ve been and where I’m going, check out my Instagram @subitamaria.

Ciao for now!

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Bookaholic Beauty by Bookaholicbeauty - 2w ago

There I go again with the click-bait title!

I’ve got an Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim High Intensity Refillable Lipstick to talk about today!

The Ultra Slim in the title is code for so little product for quite a lot of money! For $/oz, it is one of the most expensive lipsticks on the market as in total, it’s only 0.03 oz/.9 g.

Ridiculous, eh?

I’m the sucker who clearly doesn’t care because ooh, pretty packaging!

Price: CAD 42.00 and 28.00 for the refill only

Packaging

Let’s be real, this is some gorgeous, unique packaging. It truly made me excited to own one. It’s a gorgeous, gold, pointed outer shell (made of metal, not plastic) – reminiscent of a quill or fountain pen actually.

The bottom of the lipstick (the pointed part), is weighted slightly, so it has a luxurious heft in the hands. Additionally, it’s super easy to twist off the refills and switch out the colours. The slim and rounded shape of the lipstick actually makes it quite easy to fill in the lips without a lip brush or liner needed.

I’ve gotta give credit where it’s due to Hourglass…now if only they gave more product for the money.

Colour

I’ve Been is a toasted rosewood sort of shade; brown with a hint of pink. On me, it’s a medium shade, easily wearable in the daytime and nighttime, and I think it’s quite unique in my collection of lipsticks.

Excuse the crappy iPhone pic, but this is me with a cold, sans foundation, rockin’ I’ve Been

Application & Performance 

This lipstick actually applies no different to any other. It’s creamy satin finish, that slowly dries down to a demi-matte. It can exacerbate dry patches, but on the flip side, it is comfortable to wear and isn’t drying.

Now onto the big question. Is it worth the price tag?

No.

While the lipstick feels lovely on the lips, wears off elegantly and is relatively long lasting, it’s not mind-blowing. The packaging is hella sexy though, so if you’re into it, like I am, then go for it!

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