December 2015 Favourites

Despite my erratic posting schedule in the last few months, I don’t believe that I’ve ever missed a favourites post in the entire duration of my blogging life, and I was not going to start with December. Oh, and I have two spoiler alerts… One: My favourites post is coming and this year it will be split into two instalments… Two: There might be two products included in this post that are making the cut.

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Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation in 2 ($66): I purchased this constantly-praised luminous foundation at the Sephora VIB Sale back in November and I haven’t put it down or stopped loving it ever since. Believe it or not, it’s not the glowiest foundation that I own – instead, it has a subtle inner glow – but I do believe it when those with oilier patches find that it develops throughout the day and breaks down. For me, though, it has an inner radiance and satin-to-glowy finish, medium to full coverage and ridiculous lasting power (borderline 24 hours) on my dry-combination skin. And get this, when applied with a beauty blender it looks skin-like. 2 might just be a wee bit pale for me, but it was a good guess on my part and at the very least matches my neck when I’m at my palest fyi. Good thing I have a tendency to get quite bronzer-happy. 

Sephora Collection Colourful Contour Face Powder in Tranquil ($19): Another love of mine that I acquired at the Sephora VIB Sale, this contour is just as good as others report on fairer skin, looking for sculpting via an actually cool grey toned powder. It’s so cool toned that it almost leans purple – just as people have said about the long gone Chanel Notorious – but it has such a silky smooth texture that it blends effortlessly – possibly also like the Chanel, as I’ve heard. It’s definitely one that I’ve been enjoying to sculpt out my features, especially my cheekbones and temples – but given that I’ve gained a pound or ten in the last month or so, I’ve been using it to contour my jawline and slim things out a bit.

Becca x Jaclyn Hill Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Champagne Pop ($46): Again, with the Champagne Pop – I know. The simple truth is that I cannot stop using this golden champagne borderline-metallic highlighter and I can easily say that I reached for it every single time that I wore makeup in December – as a highlighter and/or a lid eyeshadow. I’ve somehow managed to make a dent in the product in a relatively short time which is remarkable in itself. I love the glow and radiance it instantly adds to my skin – and how it transforms me from looking dull and tired in an instant.

Benefit They’re Real Tinted Primer ($31): I normally would be the type to scoff at a mascara primer product, deeming it pointless and adding a needless layer of makeup onto my already sensitive eyes but after receiving a sample size in my Winter Luxe Box, I’ve completely changed my mind. For one, it’s tinted brown and adds enough natural-looking drama to my lashes on the daily that I don’t reach for a mascara on the top. I love that it’s lightweight, natural looking but volumizing and separating. And it works wonders with another mascara on top.

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara ($16-$31): I shouldn’t be so surprised that it’s possible that I’ve been so impressed by the latest Benefit mascara, but it is to me, nevertheless, after years of not understanding the They’re Real hype. Years ago, I had a major love affair with the volumizing beauty, the Benefit Bad Gal Lash Mascara, and although this one is different, more dramatically lengthening, curling and separating, I might possibly like it more. It gives dramatic lashes without looking clumpy in the slightest, especially when paired with the primer.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser ($15-16): I might just say that I found my ultimate gentle morning or second-cleanse cleanser in December and I must just not be lying or even doing that -extending-the-truth-thing. It’s mild, creamy and hydrating, formulated without fragrance or irritants, while rinsing clean. It’s not a spectacular makeup remover, but I have oils and micellar waters for that, but it does remove makeup somewhat and I have to say that it’s everything that Cetaphil is praised to be and more for me.

NUDE Skincare ProGenius Omega Treatment Rescue Oil ($85): Last month, I couldn’t resist redeeming my points at Sephora for a deluxe sized sample and I’m glad I did, as I’ve been reaching for it often as the weather has gotten drastically colder and my skin has gotten drastically drier. This oil has a light but soothing and nourishing texture and leaves my skin plumped and more radiant afterwards. I can feel the effects of the antioxidant-rich oils and I love how much nicer makeup applies over this oil. I might actually consider splurging on this one.

Nivea Dry-Very Dry Skin Nourishing Body Milk ($8-9): I fell in love with that whole in-shower body conditioner thing with Lush African Paradise a while back, but I found the product too ridiculously expensive and inconveniently packaged to repurchase – but I’m pleased to report that I like this product better because it’s cheaper and for its convenience. Also, my eczema might get along better with its heavy concentration of mineral oil and sweet almond oil rather than fragrant essential oils. I’ve adored the hydrating and calming film that it leaves on my skin after the shower or bath, particularly during this colder time of year.

Elizabeth & James Nirvana Black Rollerball ($30): December has definitely been a big fragrance month for me – I rediscovered this three note wonder and purchased two new rollerballs along with a post-Christmas perfume gift to myself. I love this deep, warm and slightly spicy vanilla scent, especially for these cooler weather months. This one hits the right spot with the masculine-feminine mix for me with its mix of musk and the floral note. There’s something about the fragrance that evokes that instantly cozy feeling for me.

What were your December standout favourites?
Maggie, x.

 

On My Radar #1

I’m beyond exhausted – and beyond sleep deprived as well – so I can’t be too sure of what might follow but I’ve compiled my thoughts on five newer launches that I’ve been curious about trying. Here I go…

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  • Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette ($64): This is an outward lie – the latest Naked release from Urban Decay has been out for perhaps near a month and I actually own it, so it’s not on my radar. However, it was on my radar until last week when I picked it up at Sephora’s bonus points and gift bag promotion and I’m definitely impressed.
  • Paula’s Choice Clear Acne Body Spray ($24 US): Unfortunately the most of my acne struggles have been on my body and even more unfortunately, they haven’t seemed to dissipate with time but gentle salicylic acid products have really seemed to help me and this spray formula is particularly interesting, given its ability to spray at any angle. Also, you get a good amount of product and it has a formula loaded with other beneficial ingredients, such as anti-irritants that could also be used on the face without missing out. I am in the market for a BHA for the face…
  • Becca x Jaclyn Hill Champagne Pop Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed ($46): While I wouldn’t say I’m anywhere as obsessed as most of us in the blogosphere, I do want to get my hands on this limited-edition “white gold with pinky peach undertones” shade because I’ve been speedily falling in love with Becca’s highlighter formulas and have been tempted to try a powder variation. I’ve been torn between trying Opal and Moonstone because I truly would prefer a combination of the two shades and from what I’ve deduced, Champagne Pop is that mix – with champagne-peach undertones but still suitable on fairer skins.
  • Sephora Collection Oil Infusion Color & Care in 03 Peach Tea ($18): Having such dry, chapped and sensitive lips and favouring low-maintenance formulas, the concept behind the YSL Volupte Tint-in-Oils has really appealed to me, where the lips are nourished with a balmy formula while a tint is left behind even after the balm dissipates, but I was not ready to shell out 35 dollars – and these seem like such an intriguing alternative. The peach-coral hybrid shade is also pleasantly up my alley and firmly in my comfort zone.
  • Bath & Body Works Flannel 3-Wick Candle ($22.50): Flannel, the androgynous warm and musky candle with that enticing pear kind of note, was my favourite candle discovery last Fall so surely it’s not a product that has just been released for the first time. However, it has re-emerged again after disappearing before the winter last year and I’m counting the days until I can justify picking another one up so it is most definitely on my radar. If you’re into “mandles”, this one is a must.
Any thoughts?
Maggie, x.