December Favourites

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December was a weird month in particular this year; I won’t purposely try to make you all gauge your precious eyes out with cliched phrases such as ‘it passed so fast’ and ‘it was so stressful and busy’, although life seems to be full of the two lately. University kept me crazy busy and stressed for the first two weeks but as soon as the fourteenth hit, I was done and it was weird.

My skin has been duller than ever with abundant dry patches and I’ve perhaps gone a little too highlighter happy and my product of choice has been the old limited edition MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Semi-Precious Pearl, which is a gorgeous glowy shimmery golden champagne.

It should be no secret that I’ve fallen in love with L’Oreal Lineur Intense in Carbon Black($10 CDN) this month. It has more pigment than Maybelline Master Precise and is more precise and slightly easier to control. With this, it’s quick and easy to create a subtle wing on an everyday basis. This liner is fine enough to create the thinnest line, which I tend to struggle with.

I’ve had the MAC Eyeshadow in Sketch($12/18 CDN) since the end of the summer but I’ve previously found it to be chalky and difficult to pair with other shades without effort but this seemed to change this month. I’ve really enjoyed placing the “velvet” but pretty much matte plum shade in the outer v and it’s been gracing my face frequently, most often paired with rosier and taupe-y shades. 

The contour powder, sold as a blush, MAC Harmony ($25 CDN) is easily one of my favourite beauty products of all time – I included it in my recently posted yearly favourites – but it’s made it’s way back into the daily rotation this month as it functions nicely as a contour shade but has some warmth to it, without looking overly warm and orangey. It has enough rosiness to it that I can go without blush when wearing this and I adore it, especially with bolder lips.

In the cold weather as of late, I’ve been finding that my natural loose curls are determined to fall flat and lifeless along with their characteristic dryness. I’ve found that applying Bumble and Bumble Texture (Un)dressing Creme ($17/33 CDN) straight out of the shower adds volume and texture while still providing control either by itself or in combination with a curl-enhancing product with hold. I think this cream manages to be one of those universal products that adds great texture among all different hair types without leaving the hair dry — it’s concentrated and even with my abundance of hair, I’m still using my travel-sized product that I bought in the spring.

My daily use of Laura Mercier Foundation Primer in Radiance($24/40 CDN) and my love for it snuck up on me. This is the first foundation primer that I’ve tried (and I’ve tried a few) that proved to be worthwhile. A little bit prior to starting the blog, I saw the 15 mL size at my Sephora in the 100-point-perk case and it had to be mine… I can’t resist a good free beauty product and as a sample, the size was very generous. It’s tinted a peachy-gold sheeny shade that adds notable luminosity to the face (which I adore), doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin in the slightest and seems to help the foundation glide on more smoothly with the touch of hydration it provides. The thing is that, as I’ve mentioned far too many times before, I do not have issues with foundation longevity and this is generally what primers are aimed to do but I like this one because it helps to blend the foundation seamlessly along with illumination but I do not think it helps with longevity or prevents oil from breaking through. I think this is a great primer for drier and duller looking skin, especially for those who haven’t had the greatest success with traditional foundation primers.

Indeed Laboratories Pepta-Bright ($40 CDN) is indeed one of those products that takes you by surprise with its efficacy — that was horrible, I know, but I couldn’t resist. It’s a chemical exfoliant in serum form with lactic acid in a moisturizing base that I’ve been using pretty much nightly since the beginning of the fall and I didn’t notice the results at first but within a few months, it helped with the formation of clogged pore bump-like things on my forehead, faded the textured marks that blemishes always leave behind on my skin and seemed to brighten and even out my skin. I’ve received some compliments on my bare skin recently and I know it’s because of this cream-serum that exfoliates without being harsh or irritating – even on my sensitive skin, all I can feel is a slight tingle (and I tend to feel the tingle with even the gentlest of products).

This month I’ve been playing The Neighbourhood‘s I Love You($7 CDN) album nonstop this month. I’m sure everyone is familiar with them because of “Sweater Weather” but the whole album is just as good. The music is moody, slightly-grungy and angsty deliciousness. I don’t know else to explain it — if you like music that iTunes places in the “alternative” genre, give this a listen if you haven’t already heard it.

Have you tried any of these? What were your favourites this month?

Daily Face #3: Minimal Makeup & Dark Lips

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EYES: Maybelline Bad to the Bronze Color Tattoo, Maybelline Copper Chic Quad, L’Oreal Lineur Intense in Carbon Black, MAC Charcoal Brown, Maybelline The Falsies Mascara

FACE: Laura Mercier Radiance Primer, Diorskin Nude Foundation in 011, Rimmel Match Perfection Concealer/Highlighter in Ivory, Maybelline Fit Me Concealer in Light, MAC Harmony Blush, MAC Semi-Precious Pearl MSF, Nars Orgasm Blush

LIPS: Revlon Lacquer Balm in Enticing

I don’t know about you but I’m a go big or go home kind of girl when it comes to makeup. I don’t feel as confident without it on but being without it in public doesn’t bother me and if going out bare-faced means a couple of minutes of sleep, I’ll gladly go out without it. I don’t tend to be one of those girls who has a go-to minimal makeup routine for every time I leave the house or anything but lately I’ve been intrigued by the concept. I’ve always liked the look of the bold lip with minimal makeup that still defines the features and here was my attempt.

When I’m keeping my overall makeup quite subdued (minus the lip), I like to keep my face dewy and natural-looking, although this seems to be my foundation preference overall as of late but it’s even more important when going through major issues with dehydration. When your skin looks as dry, pale and dull as mine does this time of year, a radiant complexion tends to be an essential. I’ve been using Laura Mercier Radiance Primer, underneath the tiniest amount of Diorskin Nude($47) that I can get away with wearing that still offers coverage.  I’m recovering from a stress-induced breakout from last week that has left me with dry marks and scars and I’ve been spot-concealing them with Maybelline Fit Me ($10) because it covers them without emphasizing the dryness.

I’ve returned to my contour of choice, MAC Harmony Blush  — ($25) when I wear anything bold (or wear any makeup in general), adding some shape to the face is essential and this is a staple of mine. I couldn’t decide on what blush to wear, so I reached for the old stand-by, pink-coral Nars Orgasm Blush ($32) and I was feeling looking particularly glowing so out came my MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Semi-Precious Pearl (LE – sorry!) for my Thighlighter. The texture of MAC MSFs are really smooth and seem to blend in with the skin and I think the product itself is a gem.

I wore the Maybelline Copper Chic Eyestudio Quad ($10) and after having it for ages I’ve decided I quite like it, although it’s certainly not mind blowing and slightly on the sheerer side. I quickly placed the frosty champagne on the inner lid, the sheer and slightly glittery copper pink on the rest of the lid and put the warm burgundy in the outer v and the lower lashline, blending into the crease. On me at least, I think that a thin and subtle winged liner pairs nicely with a bold lip and of course I used my latest love, L’Oreal Lineur Intense in Carbon Black ($10) along with a generous amount of my favourite mascara — I don’t think I even need to spell it out, do I?

Revlon’s newly launched Lacquer and Matte Balms have been getting lots of press since their release but most tend to gush about the Matte Balms, but I have a Lacquer Balm and I adore it – mentioned hereEnticing is a comfortable to wear, glossy neutral-toned darker red that actually does not cling to the outside of the lip as it fades. It wears for about four hours on the lips with light eating, I’d say. I think it’s a nice festive bold lip, but that might just be my inner need to justify my makeup purchases… If MAC Ruby Woo was less matte and had a baby with MAC Dubonnet, Revlon Lacquer Balm in Enticing ($10-11) would be the offspring. Need I say more?

What did you think of this Daily Face? Have you tried any of these products?

 

September Favourites

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September in a nutshell was crazy, stressful, busy and somewhat depressing. I spent much of it in a makeup rut, hard-pressed for time and generally sleep-deprived. Somehow this resulted in some clear favourites,

MAC Dubonnet Lipstick

This is an amplified creme finish lipstick (most likely my favourite) that is a deep berry red with some brown in it and neutral undertones. It is quite versatile as it can be worn as a subtle berry stain or as a deep berry bold lip. The formula is nice and moisturizing while still lasting on the lips. I think it’s that wearable but bold fall lip for me and although many skin tones can wear it, it is an ideal bold lip for fair skin.

Benefit Rockateur Boxed Powder

I must admit that I purchased this product due to a moment of weakness and stress, but I can’t bring myself to regret it whatsoever. I surely did not need another blush, but this is a light-buildable rose-gold with a nice sheen and neutral undertones without being too glittery or shimmery. The colour is really finely milled and the shade is especially unique – a rose gold (not too pink or too peach but rather in the middle) without the coral-orange undertones of shades such as MAC Stereo Rose.

Urban Decay Primer Potion

Ever since I got back into school and those exhausting long days, I had been having issues with my eye shadow creasing and this fixed the problem. Boring favourite, I know.

Mac Harmony Powder Blush

Like most other people, I use this “blush” as a contour powder. I’ve talked about my love of this before, but I’ve gotten into using it slightly differently; I’ve been using it for more of a precise contour then just generally adding shape to my face. It’s sort of an odd colour – a matte, cool brown with reddish undertones. It looks natural as a contour but the ruddiness in the shade can prove to be a difficulty to some.

Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation

I’ve done a review of this foundation before and as it was then, my shade is Rose Ivory (which oddly has no pink undertones whatsoever…) but I’ve gotten quite into this foundation recently. With minimal product used, I find that you can achieve a good medium-buildable coverage with a slightly luminous finish. My only irritation is that it does stick to dry patches and is not flattering on me when I am having my drier days.

Maybelline Fit Me Concealer

My shade is 10 Light, which is a fair-light shade with yellow undertones. This is a really natural looking concealer with medium coverage and is easily blendable. I use it both underneath my eyes and on blemishes but I find that it wears off of inflamed blemishes more quickly than I’d like.

Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner in Perversion

I know I mentioned this in last months favourites and all I’ve said about it before still applies but this month I’ve gotten really into tightlining with this and applying it in the waterline. This liner actually stays put and does not irritate my eyes.