Saturday, 30 June 2012

June Use-It-Up !

Another month has come and gone. I feel like June literally flew by. I look back and can't believe how quickly it went and how much I did this month! July is going to be even better, I cannot wait for my family vacation with my loved ones!! 

Here are my June Empties! As per usual, I went through a decent amount of goodies!
Products I used up in June '12
 
I decided to call it quits on my tube of benefit BADgal lash mascara. They say you should only use a tube of mascara for 3 months and then toss it, but I usually use mine for longer. I had this one since January '12 so I decided to toss it even though it was still working fine. I have already repurchased this product because I LOVE benefit's BADgal lash for its amazing lengthening and volumizing capabilities !

I finished up a pot of LUSH Lemony Flutter cuticle butter which I absolutely adore! This is a fantastic product that will keep every dry bit on your body moisturized and smooth. I love this product and gave a pot to my good friend Katie who has constant dry hands- she loves it too! Highly recommended, and already repurchased!

I decided to throw away an old tube of lip gloss from American Eagle- it was highly sticky and probably filled with synthetic chemicals, so I figured it was time to put it to rest. The same goes for the CoverGirl compact powder- it was way too light for my skin tone and I've had it since high school so I decided it was time to toss it. I will say that the scent of the powder took me back a good 8 years! I would obviously not repurchase either of these things, which I am throwing away even though they're not fully used!
I finished up two of my Mario Badescu samples from my free sample package I got back in April. I liked both of these products and I wanted to place an order but the shipping from the website is twenty dollars to Canada and I will not pay that price! I would repurchase, but only if Mario Badescu gets more reasonable shipping charges!

I also used up two more LUSH products: their tea tree water toner and the coconut deodorant powder. Both of these products are staples in my life and have been repurchased already. I love the Tea Tree Water toner because it is tailored for those with acne-prone skin. It is very light and does its job well. The coconut deodorant powder smells like heaven! I love layering this powder over top of my LaVanila natural deodorant for extra delicious scent and extra protection from body odour! I will note that I bought this carton of coconut deodorant powder last May and just finished it up now! This stuff lasts forever, I literally use it almost every day !

Lastly, I finished up a Glossybox sample- Aveeno's Active Naturals Daily Moisturizing Lotion! This product was okay- it did its job and worked well, but it wasn't anything special and I would not repurchase. I prefer more natural lotions, not ones filled with synthetic ingredients. Also, I am sad to say my "June" Glossybox will not be featured on my blog in June because it won't arrive until JULY! Glossybox was extremely late in sending out their boxes (surprise surprise) and mine isn't expected to be delivered until Tuesday or Wednesday of next week! They were using the long weekend as the excuse for why the boxes were shipped out so late? I don't see what that has to do with anything since the long weekend is THIS weekend, not last weekend? Whatever. A few people received their June Glossybox today and apparently "Junes" box is packed with seven samples! So hopefully there are things to look forward to in there :)

My CoverFX giveaway ends really, really soon! Enter here if you haven't.

This will be my last post for the long weekend! See you all on Monday or Tuesday :)
--S

Friday, 29 June 2012

NOTD: Julep Melissa & OPI Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It

OPI's Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It!
Today I am wearing Julep's Melissa with OPI's Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It! Both of these polishes were won in  giveaways :)
Julep's Melissa is a gorgeous sheer opal colour that is a perfect topcoat for.. um, anything? It is so pretty and  this is my second time wearing it and I just got it this week! I tried applying it on its own, but I think I prefer it as a top coat for other colours. I wore it on top of a nude pink and it looked gorgeous! I thought it would work well as a base colour for OPI's very fun and exciting Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It!
Julep's Melissa
'Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It' is filled with light pink confetti glitter. There are both small iridescent pink glitters and large pink heart confetti chunks! It is very sheer and obviously best used as a top coat. I knew application would be tricky, and it was! The tiny glitters applied easily but the big heart confetti glitters did not want to stick to my nails, so I had to do some nail surgery and apply them after I applied the first coat of glitter. It got a little messy, but the end result was nice! Pictured is two coats of Melissa and one coat of Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It with Juleps top coat.
Oh, and with this polish you definitely need a top coat to seal in the big glitter hearts! I didn't apply one at first, and then I lost some of the hearts. So yes, topcoat required!

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

40% OFF CAKE BEAUTY PRODUCTS ONLINE!

Cake Beauty is having a sale to celebrate Canada Day! Starting today, you can get 40% off your entire purchase from their online store with the coupon code "canadian"! It is such a great deal, I felt compelled to share it with you all!
Are you going to grab anything? I am eyeing the lemon chiffon hand creme!
--S

REVIEW: benefit blush in Coralista & Rocky Mountain Soap Company Hydrating Toner!

Rocky Mountain Soap Companies Aloe Hydrating Toner (note: sent to me for review)
I love toners. I think they're an often forgot about but very necessary part of any skin care routine. Toners are important for various reasons. They can help shrink pores, they can restore the pH balance of the skin after cleansing, they can help in moisturizing after cleansing, and most importantly, toners remove any excess cleanser or residue left behind after you clean your face!
Rocky Mountain Soap Companies Aloe Hydrating Toner ($25.00) is made with aloe vera and witch hazel, and is meant to bring the pH of the skin back into balance after cleansing. It is a hydrating toner that will work for sensitive skin and everything in between. I have acne-prone skin and thought I wouldn't like this toner as much as my favourite toner, Tea Tree Water by LUSH cosmetics. However, I was proven wrong! I love this toner! It smells really nice (I think it is the jasmine oil) and it leaves my face refreshed and hydrated. I actually have grown to prefer this toner because it leaves my face feeling very clean and bright, not at all tight or dry. I highly recommend this 100% natural product to anyone looking for a toner that works effectively and smells nice- the packaging is also lovely as it comes in a pretty glass bottle with a high quality spray nozzle! I will definitely keep this bottle once the product is gone and re-use it.
the simplest of ingredients in RMSC Aloe Hydrating Toner! 



I finally got my hands on the Coralista by benefit ($36.00/120g)! I had been eyeing this blush for a while now, and lusting after it as I saw it reviewed and raved about time and time again by other beauty bloggers like Amy at the pretty vain. This coral pink blush goes on a little sheer, as you can see in my swatch. It is no where near as pigmented as bella bamba! It has a light scent which is very noticeable during application. The brush that came with the blush is seemingly useless and it is sitting with some of my other make up junk currently. I would not recommend using it unless you're desperate.
The blush itself has a lovely shimmer and when I apply it, it appears extremely natural on my face. It gives me a subtle glow without being too obvious. I find bella bamba to be more 'in your face', where you can totally tell I am wearing blush. With coralista, it is barely noticeable and I quite like that. I have been applying bella bamba with coralista as well and they look great combined together!!
I would say this blush is best for those with fair skin. I find it to be very sheer and it might not show up very noticeably on darker skin tones. It applies nicely and gives me a beautiful glow, but as with all benefit products, it is a little bit pricey. Overall, I am happy with the blush and will definitely incorporate it into my every day routine!

Coralista blush by benefit
Do you have a favourite every day blush? What about your favourite toner? Share with me :)
--S

Monday, 25 June 2012

MUST-HAVE BEAUTY PRODUCTS FOR EVERY DAY

Who is excited for Canada Day long weekend? I know I am! Yes, I know it is only Monday, but I am already thinking about the weekend!! I am going to a concert in Niagara Falls, Ontario with some friends and I cannot wait! 
I just thought I'd do a quick post to let you all know my GUEST BLOGGER post is up over at the Topbox Blog

This weeks post is all about my favourite products that I couldn't live without! Pop over to the blog and check it out. I'd love to hear about your must-have products as well! Either comment or link me to your own blog post so I can check your faves out :)

--S

REVIEW: CoverFX MintTint FX & Skin Tint FX Moisturizing Treatment/Tint

CoverFX is a fabulous cruelty-free Canadian brand that focuses on giving flawless coverage while using safe ingredients to protect and nourish the skin. They add SPF to a lot of their products to keep the delicate facial skin protected from UV rays while out in the sun. They have a wide range of products, from lip care to foundation to primers, and I first fell in love with the company based on my experiences with their ClearPrepFX primer, which treats acne and gives a matte finish. If you suffer from acne, that is the primer you need in your life! It is absolutely amazing.
I recently got the opportunity to try out their lip tint line, called MintTint tinted anti-aging lip glaze ($22.00/3ml)- the products all contain refreshing and plumping peppermint! This gloss hydrates and softens while plumping. It is meant to provide a natural looking, non-sticky and healthy tint. As these products are lip tints, they are not highly pigmented- they add a touch of colour and lots of shine!
CoverFX MintTint in Coral Chablis
CoverFX MintTint in Coral Chablis
Here I am wearing Coral Chablis, and as you can see, it is very shiny but not extremely pigmented! It looks much brighter in the tube, but goes on muted. I quite like this because I personally prefer neutral looking lip shades over dramatic ones. The product itself is fabulous- it smells minty and tingles when first applied, although the tingling goes away quickly. It is extremely moisturizing! The lip tint is not sticky at all (woo hoo!) and it goes on silky smooth. I would not consider it long lasting, however. It is easily accidentally consumed if you're eating while wearing the tint, and it also transferred somewhat onto glassware. This product comes in seven gorgeous shades, and Coral Chablis is absolutely perfect for summer time!

I am wearing CoverFX MintTint Tinted Anti-Aging Lip Glaze in 'Coral Chablis'

Skin Tint FX Moisturizing Treatment/Tint in E LIGHT
 I was extremely excited to try out CoverFX's SkinTintFX Moisturizing Treatment/Tint with SPF 30 ($42.00/30ml) ! It is a tinted moisturizer that has natural pearlized minerals to provide a hint of colour and give a sun kissed look. This product is infused with peptides, ceramides and multi-vitamins to rejuvenate, nourish, hydrate and protect the skin. It is oil free, wax free, fragrance free and paraben free.

Sunday, 24 June 2012

BATTLING ACNE: Cod Liver Oil and more!

want clear skin? Take some cod liver oil capsules every day!
I am in my mid twenties, and I have acne. It sucks... a lot! Most people seem to think that acne affects teenagers, but for me, I got hit hard with acne after going off of hormonal birth control last year. I had chronic, painful cystic acne all over my chin, and it ruined my self-esteem. It made me want to hide from the world! It was emotionally and physically harming. I have spent hundreds and hundreds of dollars trying every cleanser and anti-acne product in the world, but nothing helped. Then, I made a post on my blog about the topical treatment Retin-A. It was the first post in a series of posts called 'Battling Acne', and I talked about my mild success using this topical treatment. Retin-A wasn't stopping new acne from coming in, but it helped make the acne go away much quicker.
I still use Retin-A on my chin every single night. It is an amazing product. It makes acne heal very quickly, and it also works wonders at making dark marks and scars disappear. I have tried other 'dark mark removers' with no success. This prescription product is actually cheaper! And it works way better! If you want a great topical acne treatment, I highly suggest you talk to your doctor about Retin-A. It worked for me! However, I was still getting acne pretty steadily, even though it wasn't lasting as long. A lovely reader of mine commented suggesting I add Cod Liver Oil supplements to my daily diet. I did some research and immediately ordered a big bottle of Cod Liver Oil capsules from well.ca, and I've been taking them daily ever since! I have to say, they have dramatically cleared my skin up! I still get some acne, but it is a million times better than it was. I take four capsules every day. It was suggested that I take 8/day, and maybe if I upped the dosage I'd be 100% acne free, but four is working pretty well for me at this point in time. To be honest, I hate taking pills and it is a total chore, but so worth it!
My final holy grail anti-acne product is the Proactiv Refining Mask. I use this as a spot treatment every night on top of my Retin-A. It yields amazing results! This is hands down the best spot treatment I have ever used. It is not overly drying, and it reduces swelling like no other! I cannot recommend this enough- get some for yourself! You can go to a kiosk and buy it outright- no need to subscribe to their entire regimen!
Proactiv's Refining Mask - the best spot treatment ever! 

Retin-A - prescription acne fighter! 
I just thought I should do a little update and let you all know how well my skin has cleared up with these three amazing products! I am no longer ashamed and embarrassed of my skin, and although I still do get breakouts, they are less severe and heal very quickly!
Do you have any holy grail anti-acne products or supplements? Let's talk about it!
--S

REVIEW: benefit 'the POREfessional'

benefit's 'the POREfessional'
Benefit's the POREfessional ($34.00/22 ml) has been getting a lot of hype lately. It seems to be a hot topic at beauty counters, on beauty blogs and amongst makeup junkies. It is a silky balm that is meant to minimize the appearance of pores. It looks slightly peach in colour out of the tube, but goes on translucent. It has a light floral scent. I found the price of this product to be a little outlandish. It is a very tiny tube of product for the price, especially if you're applying it to your entire face daily!



I have very noticeable pores. They are larger than I'd like them to be on my cheeks. I have been using this product to minimize the look of my pores, and it works okay, but it isn't anything special to me. I have used bb creams that do just as good a job (Marcelles BB cream is my fave!) and I have used other pore minimizers like Tarte's Smooth Operator which work much better.
I like that this product can be used as a primer. It leaves my face feeling silky smooth and ready for makeup application. However, it is no miracle product, and for the price, I would rather have Tarte's Smooth Operator, which minimizes my pores and keeps my face matte! The POREfessional does not make me break out, which is something to note- it is very light weight on the skin, and not greasy at all. It will leave your skin looking matte after application, but it does not help with long term shine control.
The overall verdict? I would pass on this product. I think there are better options out there for pore minimization, and the price is very steep for a product that is just okay. However, I still LOVE benefit and think they're an amazing brand ;)
Tell me what you think of the POREfessional? Love it, hate it?
--S


My CoverFX GIVEAWAY ends in a week! Enter while you still can by clicking here :) 

Thursday, 21 June 2012

STEAM CREAM HAUL!

STEAM CREAM in tin designs Koku and Ayame
A little while back, a member of my LUSH swap group asked if anyone wanted to piggy back on an order of STEAM CREAM. I immediately said yes! I had always wanted to try this cream, which people generally rave about! STEAM CREAM is a sister company to LUSH COSMETICS. They make one product, and one product only: a vegan, multipurpose cream that can be used as a facial and body moisturizer!

STEAM CREAM is hand made in the UK and Japan. It is made using fresh, high-quality natural ingredients that are fused together by a shot of steam. This unique method makes the cream extremely light in texture. STEAM CREAM is cool because it comes in re-usable tins in various ever-changing designs! The price is very reasonable, and they have decent shipping prices to North America. The cream smells like lavender, and it absorbs very easily into the skin. It does not leave behind a greasy feeling at all! The adorable tins make the cream a pleasure to use. If anyone is looking for a great vegan facial cream, I highly recommend checking this company out! I think the cream would also make for a fabulous gift for someone else.
My package, which came all the way from the UK to California, and then from California to Ontario!

Extra careful packaging for perfect travel!



Have any of you tried STEAM CREAM? I would love to hear your experiences!!
--S

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Favourites from Rocky Mountain Soap Company and Benefit!

Rocky Mountain Soap Companies Lip Butters (note: sent to me for review!)
Is anyone else surprised at how fast June has been flying by? July is inching its way closer and I have lots to look forward to in July! I thought I would do a quick little post about a few things I have been loving lately.
First on the docket? Rocky Mountain Soap Companies lip butters! These 100% natural lip butters are so delicious, and they do a fabulous job keeping my lips moist all day long. The coconut lip butter ($4.49) is almost plain tasting, and I've used it to moisturize my cuticles in a pinch! You all know how I love multi-use products :) I think these lip butters are very well-priced considering the ingredients used, and if you're looking for a new lip butter this would be a great bet for you-- all natural is the way to go with lip products! RMSC has 6 different flavours, including green apple and lemon lime- yum!
Ingredients in RMSC Coconut Lip Butter
Another big favourite in my household has been the Rocky Mountain Soap Companies Hand & Body Wash ($13.49) in lemongrass. We have been using this as a hand soap in the washroom, and boy does it smell good! The scent completely lingers on your skin- I notice it all day long! You can also use this in the shower as a shower gel, but we love using it for our hands. It is filled with uplifting essential oils.
Rocky Mountain Soap Companies Hand & Body Wash (note: sent to me for review!) 
benefit's bella bamba blush
I got this sample of benefit's bella bamba blush in a point redemption. It is a very decent size for a sample and will no doubt last me quite a while, as blushes do tend to last forever! I love how dramatically rosy this colour is. It is a watermelon pink with gold undertones that I find very complimentary to my skin tone! It has a light scent to it, as do seemingly all benefit products. It is very pigmented and a little goes a long way! I find it to leave me with a healthy glow. I really want to grab Coralista by benefit as well- they have a great blush range!!
swatch of benefit's bella bamba blush

pretty pretty!
I hope you all have entered my CoverFX giveaway! If not, click here.
--S

Monday, 18 June 2012

STAYING MATTE IN THE SUMMER HEAT

Hi everyone :) I hope you all take a little time to check out my GUEST BLOGGER post over at the TOPBOX BLOG! It is all about staying matte in the summer heat.

Pop over and check it out- it is my first guest blogger post ever! I would love any feedback you all might have. I would also like to say thank you to Topbox for this awesome opportunity.

--S

CANADIAN BEAUTY REVIEWS CoverFX Giveaway !!

Hi lovely readers. I have a very exciting post today- I am hosting a GIVEAWAY with CoverFX.
If you are unfamiliar with CoverFX, you need to get acquainted! This is a fabulous cosmetic brand that strives to create healthy, natural-looking products that really focus on flawless coverage. They have more than 30 shades to suit all skin tones and ethnicities. They are a paraben, fragrance, gluten, mineral oil and talc free company, and their products are safe for sensitive skin types! Their makeup is packed with vitamins, emollients and redness reducers. They cater to people with all sorts of skin issues, such as rosacea, acne, dark eye circles, sun damage, scars, eczema, psoriasis, burns and skin cancer!

One lucky winner will be sent a package packed with goodies from CoverFX:
BritePrep FX (15ml)



This prize package will get you off to a great start for this summer, as CoverFX products contain great SPF coverage. 
Interested in winning this giveaway? Fill out the Rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway Best of luck :) --S

NOTD: Julep's Sienna

Julep's Sienna was my favourite polish from my June Mystery Box! It is a sparkly gold polish with silver undertones. It is a very complex colour- not totally gold and not totally silver. It looks just like gold foil on the nails- I love it! It went on very nicely. Pictured is two coats without a topcoat. It has wonderful wearing time- minimal chipping after wearing it for 3 days straight!


Julep's Sienna
I have received many compliments on this colour! The look and formula are both perfect, so this is definitely my favourite Julep polish to date!
--S


P.S. to my fellow bloggers: sorry if I haven't been commenting and updating as much lately. I am going through some personal issues. I hope to be back to my cheery self very soon. 

Sunday, 17 June 2012

REVIEW: Marcelle Xtension Plus Mascara

In  a past Glossybox, I received a lovely full sized Marcelle Xtension Plus Mascara. I have just got around to try it recently as I finished off a Bad Gal Lash by Benefit. I had never tried any mascaras by Marcelle before- it is not one of my usual brands that I am drawn toward, but I ended up loving their bb cream (which I also got a sample of in my Glossybox). I am very impressed with this mascara!
Marcelle's Xtension Plus has a plastic applicator with very thin and short bristles- usually I dislike applicators like this because I find that they make lashes look thin and spidery. However, this is not the case with Xtension Plus! It makes my lashes very thick and long, I love the volume it provides! It is a perfect jet black, and it doesn't smudge throughout the day like stila's Forever Your Curl


As you can see, my lashes on the left are without any mascara, and on the right I am wearing Xtension Plus. I highly recommend this mascara to anyone who is looking for a fairly priced volumizing and lengthening mascara that isn't overly dramatic. I would definitely repurchase this in the future! 
--S

In other exciting news, I have been asked to do some guest blogging for the TOPBOX blog. I am extremely excited about this. My first guest post will go live on Monday and I will link it to you guys then <3

Thursday, 14 June 2012

JULEP June Mystery Box


Have you heard about Julep? They have a monthly subscription service where for $19.99, you will be sent a monthly box filled with $60+ worth of nail polish, pedicure or manicure items. It is different from most beauty subscription boxes in that you get to see what is coming in your box before it is sent out, and if you don't like the things, you can pick another Maven box or have the option of skipping a month. 
I have refrained from subscribing to the Julep Maven subscription program because I like nail polish, but not enough to dedicate $20.00/month to it. However, Julep occasionally offers 'mystery box' deals that are open to everyone, and you do not need to be a Julep Maven to order one! Julep ships out of the USA, but they do not charge extra in shipping for Canadians. I ordered my second Julep Mystery Box this month for $19.99 all in. You can read about my May Mystery Box by clicking here.

My first mystery box came in a bigger box, so I immediately knew that this one wouldn't be as jammed packed with goodies. I was right, I got less products this time around. Oh well, that is the gamble you take when you order a mystery box!
My June Mystery Box 
In my June Mystery Box I received: a julep emery board, Juleps SPF 15 lip chap, a Julep top coat, and Drew, Emilie and Sienna.
Julep's Drew -- fuchsia creme
Drew ($14.00) is a bright fuchsia pink. This is a pretty common colour in the polish world and nothing spectacular. I have plenty of colours similar to this already.
Julep's Emilie -- forest green creme
 Emilie is a matte looking forest green. Definitely not my type of colour- but I bet my sister might like it!
Julep's Sienna -- shimmery gold
Sienna has saved this mystery box for me. I love it and I do not own a gold polish at the moment. This is a welcome addition to my collection!
On top of the three polishes, I got a lip chap and another top coat ($14.00). The top coat by Julep is nice and I will absolutely use it. I am not sure what I will do with the lip chap ($6.00) because I have so many at the moment, but I am happy to see it is made with organic ingredients! It is vanilla mint which sounds delightful. However, I think Julep should put a little more time into their packaging- the design on the lip chap makes it look like a cheap brand.
The total worth of this box is $62.00 and I paid $19.99 for it. That is a very good deal. However, I think this may be my last Mystery Box for a little while, because I didn't get colours that I would pick out personally in this box and the same thing happened with my last Mystery Box. I am a little too picky for this service, I think?
Did you order a Julep Mystery Box? Share what you got with me!!
--S

I just realized I never officially announced the winner of my 150 follower giveaway! It was Jamie A. ! I sent her the package on Monday. Enjoy Jamie <3
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