New Year Stash Shopping

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Unless you’re one of the blessed few that manage to get by and not compulsively by loads of products in each makeup category, I’m sure you can benefit from a look through your mass of makeup every few months to pull out some new products that you haven’t been using and bring them into the daily rotation. Early in the new year, it seems about time for another edition…

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L’Oreal Double Extend Beauty Tubes Mascara ($14-15)

Some months back, I was in a mascara buying mood and I was interested in both the tubing mascaras – because of the supposed ease of removal with warm water – and a lash primer, so when I spotted this two-in-one formula, I gave it a go because it ticket all of the boxes. Unfortunately, I was not particular impressed with the slightly wet lengthening and defining formula, already having pretty nice long and curled lashes, nor did I find it particularly simple to remove. I pulled this mascara out today, looking for something different and after months have passed and the formula has dried out some, I have enjoyed the increased volume and drama that the formula provides along with the impressive lengthening and overall natural separated effect. The length of my lashes are kind of ridiculous with this on them, in the best way possible.

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Rimmel Match Perfection Concealer in 010 Ivory ($7-8)

Late in 2013 and in the early days of 2014, I was enjoying this highlighting concealer for its thin texture, brightening effect and surprisingly opaque in coverage but after discovering more colour-correcting formulas for counteracting undereye darkness, I turned away from this one. However, lately I’ve been enjoying this rather pale toned concealer to underneath my eyes to brighten/cover things up along to any kind of discolouration and to highlight some areas slightly if I’m so inclined.

Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation in 100 Ivory ($9-13)

It may very well be a stretch to say that this affordable foundation was ever out of my rotation completely, which shouldn’t be surprising because I’ve raved about it countless times and for ages, I have considered it to be among my top few very favourite foundations – and if you’ve been around here for some time, I’m sure you’re well aware of how fanatical I get about foundations. Erm, getting to the point now. I hadn’t been reaching for this foundation often within the last three or four months but upon grabbing this foundation on an early morning in my zombie state, I’m back into this one. I love how good of a match the moderately fair yellow-tinged-beige-leaning foundation is on my fairer winter skin, how hydrating and comfortable it is even on these -20 degree snowy days and how it gives luminosity to my skin while still covering anything that needs to be covered. I honestly do not know how I haven’t gone through a bottle yet.

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Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette ($67)

To be honest, I never keep this luxurious palette far away from my daily makeup stash, as it’s lovely and I paid more than one should on it, but in recent months when I’ve been in such a rush with my everyday makeup routine, I haven’t been taking the time to apply such subtle powders. I’ve been either not making the effort to highlight or even set my face, or I’ve gone with slightly less fine powders that get more impact with less effort. In recent days, though, I dug out this palette, wanting to find a subtle bronzer that would suit my fairer skin and I have fallen back in love. Note: the state of my Dim Light makes me want to cry.

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NARS Orgasm Powder Blush ($35)

Despite not reaching for the cult-favourite pinky coral blush – with that illuminating golden shimmer running throughout – on a regular basis for over six months, I would still have to list this glowy blush as among my absolute favourites for its instant brightening effect. However, I have gotten up the courage to face (on record) that I’ve neglected such a beauty and I’ve already begun the process of remedying that fact. I feel like I might be one of the few that believe that this shade is worth the hype but if your colouring is anything like mine and you have similar blush preferences to me, I would highly recommend giving it a go, pronto.

I’m beginning to realize that this post was on the lengthy side with perhaps not the most interesting content, – but what else is new? Have you rediscovered anything in your stash lately?
Maggie, x.

 

The Weekend Post | The Current Loves

DSC_0945It might seem like all I do around these parts is rave about my favourite products but I’m not going to let my fear of repition get in the way of shring some of my favourite products of the moment with you. Don’t click off just yet; I promise that I’m going to speak of some new loves along with a usual suspect or two.

L’Oreal Total Repair 5 Repairing Mask

Despite being a girl who places high demands on her haircare, having such dry and tangly wavy-curly hair and consequently ending to go for higher end options, I’ve always held high regard for the L’Oreal line. With this said, I’ve been less than impressed by the other offerings that I’ve tried from this particular line and I’m pleased to report that this one has compared to the highest end counterparts. It’s not too heavy but extremely nourishing for my long hair and has nice detangling power to boot.

Garnier Deconstructed Texture Tease

I will admit that despite really enjoying this in the last week or so, I included it in the photo without thinking about how it would be the topic of discussion in my next post. Oops. Case in point — I’ll try to keep this brief. This is a colourless spray that instant texture and volume to the hair (roots in particular), adding grit to the hair with a dose of hold at the same time.

Dior Star Fluid Foundation

While this isn’t a foundation that instantly applies and looks like skin with the most glowing finish, I have grown to love this foundation and it is one that I love as it sets into the skin and wear it throughout the day, even after say the 10 hour mark. It sinks nicely into the skin and really blends nicely without being obvious on the skin despite being medium-buildable coverage with a nice satin finish that turns glowier throughout the day. I wish that the fragrance and/or chemical sunscreen didn’t make my skin tingle upon first use but I do love that the formula is nice and hydrating throughout the day and has that nice lightweight texture without involving irritating alcohol. It’s not an uber-dewy foundation but I love how it leaves the skin looking revitalized while feeling comfortable on my sensitive skin.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette

This is definitely the item that has been previously talked about the most of the bunch but it deserved mention because I’ve grabbed for it daily, primarily for the middle limited edition shade, Incandescent Light as a nice highlighter with refined sheen that’s actually light enough to brighten the area head-on and to highlight the inner corner of the eyelid in a pinch. Also when I haven’t been feeling much on the checks, I’ll reach for the bronzier Radiant Light for that subtle glow.

L’Oreal Infallible Super Slim

After retiring my beloved Lineur Intense a few weeks back, I decided to pick this one up a a replacement and I must say that I’m at least as impressed with it, for slightly different reasons. Although it’s not as easy to create a smooth wing with this formula because of its firm controlled top that requires sufficient pressure to deposit product, I’ve been enjoying just how easy it is to control and create a precise line with it.

Make Up For Ever Smoky Extravagant Mascara

Now, I’ve had this mascara since I picked it up (in sample size) as part of my Sephora birthday gift back in June but I threw the small box into the back of my drawer, only o be recently duck back out and actually applied to my lashes. Although I’ve been enjoying the dramatic volume and impact that this gives to my lashes, I’m sure that I’ll fall in love more when the formula is less wet and I don’t have to be quite so careful with the wand. I haven’t been using higher end mascaras in ages but this might just have brought me back into the game because of the drama it gave to my lashes without clumping or heaviness involved. It might just be worth the splurge.

Rimmel Kate Moss Lasting Finish Matte Lipstick in 110 Kiss of Life

I’ve been really into the bold lip as of late and this fairly neutral red that leans slightly-orangey in tone has been my pick not only because of how much I love the shade but also because of how fabulous the formulation is. I wouldn’t describe the finish of these comfortable lipsticks as completely matte but they are semi-matte and don’t dry out your lips in the slightest, gliding on with full pigmentation and staying in place for 5-6 hours with some eating and drinking involved. Not only is this scarlet hue a flattering option with my dark hair and fair skin, but it’s also a low fuss shade to wear, being bold without requiring a whole lot of maintenance.

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Thoughts (and Updates) on Makeup Acquisitions

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This morning, after I rolled around groggily and developed the capacity for coherent thought, it dawned on me that I wanted to write a post different than the one I had planned. From playing with makeup in the last little while, I had thoughts that I wanted to share on a multitude of different products, both ones that haven’t been mentioned much before and those that are regularly featured around these parts, without committing to the formality and conclusiveness of a traditional review. And I was feeling in a chatty mood – or is it type-y? I’m not in love with the title of this post either, if you were cringing along with me.

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Smashbox Cherry Smokes Photo-Op Eyeshadow Palette ($44)

I actually had gone back to Shopper’s Drugmart, where I purchased this in the first place and I would have returned it if it hadn’t been such a hassle to do so but regardless, this is a lovely autumnal-themed palette. As for the individual shadows, they are creamy and uber-pigmented but it has to be noted that their powdery texture should inspire caution because there disasters can easily come awry with the fallout situation. My issue with the palette is that it doesn’t contain all of my essential daily shades — it does have some nice shimmery lid shades and some matte shades but it would greatly benefit from a lighter shimmery highlight/lid shade and a nice light brown shade for use through the crease and blending. With this complaint aside, the eight shades found within this palette are a nice mix of cool and warm tones that are unique and interesting yet neutral shades. None of the shades in the palette are anything less than poor but unfortunately the least fabulous is the matte reddish brown – which is still good but a wee bit dry and more difficult to blend than the others. The black is bloody amazing, though.

Dior 5-Colour Eyeshadow in 734 Grege ($61)

Speaking of palettes, this one remains being a staple in my routine with its small selection of essential everyday shades and impeccable quality; they’re pigmented, long-lasting and blenable with the least fallout out of any shadows that I have ever tried. Even though this quint really does not seem exciting in the slightest, it really is one that should be more compelling. The cool-toned deep brown works effectively to deepen the crease and it also works to fill in my eyebrows, if used with a light hand, the satiny caramel shade fits the bill for use as a transition colour or a standard shadow for the crease, there’s a nice shimmery highlight shade as well and there’s a nice defining shade along with one for the lids. While this palette functions nicely on it’s own, my experience has taught me that it’s also a good one to use with other shadows that are missing the essentials.

Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet Smooth-Effect Makeup ($48)

Before you give into the urge and roll your eyes at me for talking yet again about a product that I’ve been nothing short of confessing my love for since picking it up as a birthday gift for myself back in June, hear me out. I still love this foundation for all of its virtues but seeing as my skin has been on the drier state of things as of late, with dry patches and some of the expected flakiness, so I thought I would give an update on how the velvety foundation would fare with the drier skin, seeing as I’ve been experiencing dryness and a definite introduction to autumnal weather. The formula can show the more severe dry patches but still, I wouldn’t say that it highlights them but more than this, it doesn’t highlight or show skin texture issues in a way that is helpful when I’m on the drier side of things. It’s not necessarily going to perform quite as well on my skin in the colder months, but I still expect it to be one that I frequently reach for. It’s lightweight luminosity manages to really flatter dull dehydrated skin and it can definitely sit nicer on skin with a little bit of extra help on the hydration front or with a luminizing primer such as the Annabelle Luminous Finish Colour Control Instant Perfecting Base. Again, I emphasize that it doesn’t belong with the camp of hideous foundations on dry skin.

 Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette ($67)

I’ve given my thoughts on this gorgeous trio of the supposedly air-brushing powders in a rather comprehensive manner before and have thrown in a few updates before but here I am, adding a few more thoughts. I’m still feeling equally as impressed with the first two shades of the palette — Incandescent Light as an opalescent subtle highlighter and Dim Light as a nice blurring powder — but I have actually ventured into using the darker golden Radiant Light shade and have been using it often. This shade neither works as a traditional highlighter or bronzer in a way that I love, but I’ve found it stunning when used as a glowy ‘blush’ when I’m not going for a ‘blushy’ look. There’s something about wearing this on the cheeks that makes you look glowy and a bit more golden.

L’Oreal Glossy Balm in Ginger Candy ($9-11)

I somehow hadn’t noticed this until now, but it appears that I like these balm pencil style products, especially from the more affordable brands but I might like this formula and shade the most. They have all of the positive traits of the Revlon Lacquer Balms but they don’t have that mintiness to them — my lips might be rejoicing — and there’s even less of that sparkle going on. I picked up this shade without thinking about the shade and I automatically gravitated towards this gorgeous warm-toned darker peachy nude, that strikes me as one of those flattering no-fuss shades, and I have to say that it’s like MAC Patisserie Lipstick in more than just function and practicality – it’ a slightly peachier version of my favourite MAC lipstick. This has found its home in my bag, but has also frequently seen the light of day. I don’t regret this purchase in the slightest.

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Have you tried any of these products?
Maggie, x.

 

 

The Daily Face #21: Actual “No Makeup” Makeup

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I’m neither someone who has an authentic affinity for minimal product makeup or the kind of makeup that hardly looks like its there but after countless attempts at both, I have to say that I’ve been far more successful with the latter and I figured I would share the countless steps I took to give the illusion of not wearing makeup unless one was to examine my face ultra-close with meticulous detail.

Because my skin is about as combination as it gets at the moment – my t-zone might actually appear to produce oil like any normal t-zone but I’m suffering from dry patches on the cheeks – and of course I’m suffering from my usual dehydration, the skin required the most thought in order to appear bare but much nicer. With this in mind, I began with a little bit richer of a moisturizer, the impressively lightweight Kiehl’s Skin Rescuer to make sure that whatever I put on top would not be sticking to the skin in an unflattering way. Keeping up with this theme, I also went for my primer of choice, the Annabelle CC Colour Control Luminous Finish Instant Perfecting Base, making sure to massage it into the skin. Foundation-wise, I went for a scant pump of the trusted Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation in 100 Ivory and really went to town, buffing it into my skin to perfection with my Real Techniques Buffing Brush. 

Afterwards, I really went to town on creating a natural-looking luminous and rested complexion and this was not easy especially considering the quality of my sleep as of late. As per usual, the Bobbi Brown Corrector in Light-Medium Bisque was patted underneath the eyes to camouflage darkness and afterwards the L’Oreal Magic Lumi Concealer in Fair was lightly applied and blended below the concealer to brighten that area and on the cheekbones, center of the forehead, chin and above the jawline to highlight in an undetectable way. Furthering the rested and luminous look, I put the subtle but instantly-dewy Benefit Girl Meets Pearl liquid highlighter to the tops of my cheekbones; unlike outwardly shimmery powder highlighters, this one looks invisible on the skin but fakes that luminosity to perfection. I then set my t-zone lightly with the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light, mixing in some of the Incandescent Light shade when applying to the forehead to avoid the weird effect that the shade can give off. And because I wanted to be as subtly highlighted as possible, the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Incandescent Light was dusted over the cheekbones for even more glow. I then went in with my L’Oreal Glam Bronze Mono in Universal Sun to add some (subtle) shape (and warmth) to the backs of my cheekbones before applying the peach-leaning tan MAC Tenderling Powder Blush with the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush.

I’m pleased to inform you that the skin was the most work overall and that I didn’t spend ages and ages to look like I didn’t put any effort in at all. I began by priming my lids and correcting any discoloration with the L’Oreal Colour Riche Eye Primer before moving onto shadow. Before I begin with the explanation here, I thought I would note that I have deep set eyes so I feel that I can pull off more added depth to my eyes without looking made up in the slightest – I know for many, this would look obvious, blah, blah, blah. First off, MAC Soft Brown Eyeshadow was blended through my crease, to be followed with a generous portion of MAC Dazzlelight Eyeshadow, a cream hue with subtle golden shimmer running throughout, all over the lid and packed into the inner corner of the eyes. The last shade used was MAC Swiss Chocolate Eyeshadow, a warm reddish brown and it was then used to add depth to the crease and the outer corner. At this point I blended smudged some of the soft-black Lancome Le Crayon Khol along the outer half of the upper and lower lashlines but diffused the upper lashline further by adding more Swiss Chocolate in the outer corner and along the lashline. For mascara I chose the L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes Excess, as it brings definition and natural-looking volume to the lashes and obviously there had to be something done with the brows so I ran the MAC Pro Longwear Waterproof Brow Set in Quiet Brunette through them, concentrating on the outer arch portion.

The lips weren’t anything new — I simply filled them in with the Annabelle Lipliner in Demure and applied the darker warm-browny-pink based nude, the sheer MAC Patisserie Lipstick. The final touch was a few spritzes of the NYX Dewy Finish Makeup Setting Spray, eliminating any hint of powderiness to the face.

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What do you reach for when achieving the “no makeup” makeup look? Thoughts?
Maggie, x.

The Monthly Roundup #8: July 2014

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I might moan and groan about those superficial daily life struggles more often than not but it’s not expected for those to be taken 100% seriously to account for my life, however, there is no exaggerating when I say that July was not a good month; it didn’t start off on a positive note and it ended on a wholeheartedly negative one. But, I’m moving on. Wait, I lied because I have to address the sad truth that it’s not particularly upsetting that school will be starting up again in a little over a month – there’s something comforting in the monotony of that routine. Is anybody with me on that one?

1. The Beauty Bargain #4: L’Oreal Glam Bronze Mono in 04 Universal Sun
In short, where I managed to articulate my love for this red-toned bronzer in a somewhat satisfactory fashion, covering all the bases. I was also rather pleased with the photo shown above, considering my truly amateur skillset.
 
2. My Go-To Spring/Summer Lipsticks
Again, where I was actually pleasantly surprised at the quality of the pictures in said post but also made the effort to narrow down my favourite lip products and showcase them on my lips – without going overboard.
 
3. Beauty Thoughts: The Verdict
Where I tried a new post format that involved simply giving my thoughts on a handful of products and was pleased with the result and varying lot. I might expect more of these to come – thoughts?
 
4. The Essentials with Laura
Surprisingly where I brought another face and perspective to my little corner of the internet and was able to share her favourite products with you. I hope it felt refreshing.
 
5. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette
As one might expect, where I gathered my honest thoughts and provided a detailed account of them on this hyped luxury buy. When I say detailed, I’m not exaggerating…
 
What were your highlights?
Maggie, x.
 
 

 

 

The Daily Face #20

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It has been a good couple of weeks since my last ‘Daily Face’ post, strangely enough, so it goes without saying that it was time for another one. On another note, don’t get used to this whole two posts in one day kind of deal — it’s only happening because life has gotten in the way lately and this morning’s post was really meant to go up yesterday, so it truly is the post I wanted to put up today and I had the time, inspiration and focus to do so. With it being all Summery and whatnot paired with general life busy-ness, I haven’t been feeling like playing and faffing around as much with makeup so it’s on the more basic end of the spectrum for me and easily takes less than 10 minutes.

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DSC_1153First things first, I promise that the above shot is not doing my eyeliner justice — it’s the angle that makes the line look uneven, seriously. End Ramble. Seeing as I’ve accidentally gotten a bit of colour from the sun (whilst using good spf of course), I’ve been able to wear the lovely dewy Bourjois 10 Hour Sleep Effect Foundation in 73 without having to work at blending the rather dark shade into my pale neck and therefore I did so. I was much too lazy to do that whole pinpoint concealing regime, but I had quite a red blemish on my right cheek so I covered it up (somewhat) with the Revlon Colorstay Concealer in Light and my finger. As per usual, I relied on the tiniest amount of the Bobbi Brown Corrector in Light to Medium Bisque to cancel out some undereye darkness. At this point I decided to run some of the MAC Pro Longwear Waterproof Brow Set in Quiet Brunette through the brows for some heavy-duty taming and some natural-looking effortless definition — before I went on and continued with the face.

I decided to use my loved MAC Harmony Powder Blush that I recently depotted to contour the face a bit and then of course, I decided to use a whole load of MAC products — apparently I’m having a bit of a MAC moment. For blush, I used another shade in my palette, MAC Tenderling Powder Blush, a rosy tan hue to add some warmth and colour to my cheeks with little to no effort. Then I went and grabbed the lovely Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette , running Dim Light throughout the t-zone for some finishing and blurring action and finishing with a dose of Incandescent Light to highlight the cheekbones.

As I have been for the last week or so, I went for the Maybelline Color Tattoo in Barely Branded as my base to add some much-needed longevity. Then on the eyeshadow front, I stuck to three colours from my MAC palette that I’m currently obsessed with; Soft Brown was blended through the crease, the antiqued-gold Woodwinked went all over the lid and my recently acquired shade, Smut was placed in the outer corner and used to line the lower lashes. I’m having a bit of a love affair with all of these shades but Woodwinked might be the most noteworthy as I’ve had it for ages and have just recently rekindled my obsession with it. In the last week or so, I’ve also become reacquainted with my liner love, the effortless L’Oreal Lineur Intense and I obviously went for a subtle flick — that I repeat is much more on point in real life. Because we all know that mascara is a necessity, I’m sure you’re unsurprised to hear that I went for the Revlon Bold Lacquer Mascara.

On the lips — you guessed it — I went for another MAC shade that I’m currently obsessed with and that shade is the MAC Lipstick in Kinda Sexy. While it’s a matte lipstick it’s not overly drying or unflattering on the lips but most importantly it’s the most flattering my-lips-but-better rosy peach shade with the subtlest brown-tinge to it. Neither words or swatches do this one justice, I’ll tell you…

Thoughts on this makeup?
Maggie, x.

 

Weekly Medley #25

Recently Updated19(1) A skincare review (here) (2) Another review – the Hourglass Ambient Palette (3) A daily face/selfie (4) Reading (5) Monday’s Daily Face (6) Blogging in the garden

 I can easily say that I’ve been doing these posts for a while now — note the edition number — and I have made a few changes already but here I am making another small change yet again. Often I’ve found myself wanting to write different posts while in that laid back and relaxed Sunday frame of mind and because of this I’m trying this out on a Monday. It’s been really hot again this week, remaining humid with consistent 30 degree weather and sunshine and as nice as this weather has been to enjoy outdoors, it really hinders my productivity as all I seem to be able to do is complain, sit in front of my fan and eventually escape to the outdoors. Speaking of the outside, I began working on my laptop in the shade by my garden and it was divine. On an equally as positive note, the power outages and heavy lifting seems to have subsided, only to be replaced with more low-key activities.

This week I couldn’t get enough of my Garnier Clean + Nourishing Cleansing Oil –I mean that I often make use of this cleansing oil but I’ve been loving this one all week and has actually got me out of my slight skincare lazy streak that I’ve been in as of late (relying far too much on Bioderma) and only has one fault – the packaging. Because of the leaking issue that the cleansing oil has, I could not muster the effort to photograph it because every time that I’ve tried this before there has been a bit of a leaking disaster involved. Without realizing it, I ran out of cotton pads (which I use to remove my eye makeup) and I decided to take a risk and actually use this cleansing oil on the eyes also and it paid off as it removes eye makeup very well without irritating my sensitive eyes in any shape or form. Being able to use this as a cleanser on my face and eyes to remove all my makeup has been enjoyably practical and fuss-free. It removes longwearing eyeliner fantastically without any blurring, stinging or inside-eye oiliness involved. It’s affordable, effective, agreeable to my sensitive skin and feels luxurious so it does tick all of the boxes.

It actually looks like this is going to be a brief one. As usual, I’m interested to know how your week as gone but today I hope you’re feeling a little better than I am — I’m feeling quite gross. Happy Monday … if that’s possible!
Maggie, x.