January 2014 Favourites

Pureology Precious Oils Masque, MAC Studio Careblend Pressed Powder, Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse Foundation, By Nature Organic Rosehip Oil, Maybelline Hi-lighting Bronzer in Deep Bronze, L'Oreal Lineur Intense in Carbon Black, MAC All That Glitters Eyeshadow, MAC Coquette Eyeshadow
Pureology Precious Oils Masque, MAC Studio Careblend Pressed Powder, Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse Foundation, By Nature Organic Rosehip Oil, Maybelline Hi-lighting Bronzer in Deep Bronze, L’Oreal Lineur Intense in Carbon Black, MAC All That Glitters Eyeshadow, MAC Coquette Eyeshadow

I’ve mentioned stress in passing before but I’m someone who legitimately suffers from anxiety and I’ve been anxious this month, not sleeping well, constantly tired and the like. It’s been one of those months when I’ve both felt and looked disheveled constantly, barely able to remember to wash my hair, apply nail polish and to slap some makeup on my face on the regular. However, I’ve had some good discoveries and rediscovered some products this month – this is a lengthier list than my usual but I’ve been loving some different things and continuing loving some of the same.

Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse Foundation ($11-14 CDN)

This was one of those products that I bought at the worst possible time for testing it; It was during that sore and irritated winter skin phase that I’m sure we all can relate to hating every product during – even more than that I was having texture issues from breakouts, you know how that goes. Pretty much I arbitrarily thought that this foundation was worsening my skin frustration and was convinced it was the wrong shade when in fact, although it’s not absolutely perfect it is still pretty good. I wear the lightest shade, 110 Porcelain Ivory, which I will note is not a particularly fair shade but rather a moderately fair one with relatively neutral undertones. This formula is dewy but not so overwhelmingly so that I don’t think a combo skin could wear it and provides medium coverage that is slightly build able but what I appreciate about the cream foundation is its hydration factor and it’s ability to sit nicely on drier skin after being worked in. The only thing about this foundation that is slightly irritating is that it takes some work to apply and isn’t a slap-and-go kind of foundation.

L’Oreal Lineur Intense in Carbon Black ($9-11 CDN)

If you’re both as fickle and as beauty obsessed as me, there are very few products that remain constant in your routine as the months go by and the seasons change but this has proven to be one of the rare exceptions for me. I’ve used it almost daily ever since I picked it up a few months ago. It’s a rich black shade that is long wearing and the felt-tip applicator is foolproof for creating thin kitten flicks on the regular in under a minute.

By Nature Organic Rosehip Oil ($13/26 CDN)

This would be another choice of mine that should not be a surprise as I’ve featured it in a few posts in the last little while but it’s deserving of mention here. I’ve used oils in the past with minimal success as all-over facial moisturizers but after I picked this one up to use on top of moisturizers and nightly treatment, my feelings changed. It brings that much needed luminosity to the face, has impressive soothing powers and really helps to heal skin irritation and fade fresh scars that are left behind. It’s dry oil texture took some getting used to, however – it’s not that typical oil-y texture that I’ve come to expect.

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MAC All That Glitters eyeshadow ($12/18 CDN)

This has been granted a few mentions here in the past month  so I’ll try to give a quick recap but I can’t promise that it’ll be truly brief. After going through two of these in the past and repurchasing this at the start of the month, I’m confident to say that this is the perfect everyday lid colour. It’s a sheeny, nicely-textured peachy gold shade that is darker than a traditional champagne but darker than say a gold or brown shade. It instantly makes me look alive when I apply it.

MAC Coquette eyeshadow ($12/18 CDN)

At the very beginning of the month, I walked into MAC and after not buying anything there in what felt for ages, impressed myself by only picking up a few things and this “satin” shade that is matte in my view but exceptionally blend able for the finish was one of the shadows. I complained to the MAC girl about my brows always looking too ‘red’ and she said she suffered from the same thing as well until she used this shade and I was sold even before she put it through my brows. It’s a disgusting-looking cool toned medium grey-brown that looks quite ashy but it’s perfect on – natural while still providing definition. Charcoal Brown, you’ve been replaced; cool-toned brunettes take note.

Pureology Precious Oils Masque ($50 CDN)

If you haven’t just stumbled on this post by chance, you had to know that this was coming. After experimenting with more affordable conditioning treatments for months and suffering dry hair and tangles galore, this wow-ed me upon first use – and I’m not easily wowed. It’s a concentrated treatment, rich and nourishing containing a good quantity of oils that both helps to detangle the hair and helps to stop the tangles from forming and manages to keep my fine wavy-curly hair nourished without being weighed down and looking limp. I know it’s ridiculously expensive but I’m pleased to report it’s worth it.

MAC Studio Careblend Pressed Powder ($30 CDN)

One of my first posts on this blog was my review for this powder which I wear in Light, which is the fairest shade with yellow undertones. I had stopped using powder at all for ages but I rediscovered this one and fell in love all over again. It’s one of those rare finely-milled powders that does not highlight dry patches and minimizes the appearance of imperfections and takes shine down slightly without leaving the skin ‘matte’ and devoid of radiance.

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Maybelline Face Studio Master Hi-light Hi-lighting Bronzer in Deep Bronze ($12-16 CDN)

I can honestly say that I wore this “bronzer” – I wear it as a blush – twenty days this month and this is not something regular for me. This was a big moment for me on the grounds that it’s the first drugstore blush that I’ve ever loved. The luminous rosy copper shade had the nicest texture and pigmentation without being overly dramatic and adds much-needed warmth to the face. I’m restraining myself from going on now because I’ve rambled on about this more than enough…

Civilization V Game ($30 CDN)

Yes, I’m talking about a computer game here. I’m not a huge gamer by any means and I’m selective but there are a few I really like and this month I was addicted to playing the strategy game. I find it challenging and for some reason its a thrill and the whole world domination concept starting from the ancient world to present day is always interesting. If you enjoy ancient things or history-based games, I recommend this one. It’s addicting and is flexible in the ways that it can be won (victory through culture, social policies, science, war etc.) — what more could you want?

What have you been loving this month?

Maggie, x.

Daily Face #5: I Sort of Have a Routine *Gasp*

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Although I’m self-professedly not the kind of girl who sticks to a daily makeup routine without changing it up a bit on the daily basis, lately I’ve been sticking to quite a “routine” of sorts and I thought I’d share as I haven’t done a daily face this year – what horror, har har har. This is the kind of makeup that seems to happen when (a) I make the effort to actually apply something and (b) I don’t want to think on autopilot.

So I might have lied; well kind of. I’ve gotten into a routine in terms of what products I apply and what I go for buttt as I’m not completely broke as I’ve picked up a few things lately there have been a few recent additions as well. The overall routine, however, has remained constant.

I’m convinced that I was delusional before when I thought I didn’t like Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse Foundation. Since doing my “shopping my stash” post, I’ve been reaching for this foundation exclusively – and that’s saying something because I’m a foundation hoarder and I can never seem to stick to one. It has a hydrating creamy consistency providing medium coverage that can be built and a slightly dewy finish. Particularly when paired with the Lancome La Base Pro silicone-y primer, it sits on my dry skin nicely, providing coverage without it looking obvious or making my skin look dull.

I’ve done something shocking, I’ve fallen back in love with my MAC Studio Careblend Pressed Powder , which I wear in the lightest shade after passing powder off for months because I don’t “need it” and worried about cakiness and the like. Maybe now since I’ve been a little more frugal with my foundation application or something, it’s made its way into the daily rotation. Applied with a powder brush, it adds a tiny bit of coverage and sets the skin and helps with imperfections such as pores and texture while providing a natural (not matte) finish. Unless I have an absolutely frightening dry patch, it does not highlight them at all and it’s amazing. Concealer has been my standard highlighting Rimmel Match Perfection underneath my eyes in the lightest shade.

For the last little while I’ve rambled on about my love of MAC Harmony Powder Blush for the daily contouring and bronzing job, but recently I’ve been reaching for the creamy Sonia Kashuk Undetectable Creme Bronzer in Warm Tan because there is something magical about the way it sits on the skin that’s worth the extra effort to blend in. Benefit Girl Meets Pearl Highlighter ends up on my cheekbones daily automatically for that healthy dewy sheen.

So I was at MAC a week ago and somehow I found myself at the register with a few products I’d been lusting after in my bag. I have no idea how this happened. Even though the last thing in the world I need is blush, I picked up the duo palette and had to pick up a blush to go inside along with the eyeshadows and I chose MAC Powder Blush in Tenderling and I’m glad I did. It’s my first truly neutral blush that livens up the face without looking like blush and is that perfect complement to wearing a bolder lip in daytime life. It’s matte-but-not-flat and the warmish brown shade leans peachy in a flattering way. If you have colouring like mine, you need this in your life. 

Although I do tend to rotate between specific eyeshadows, I’ve been reaching for this “eye” exclusively. After priming, I filled in my brows with my latest addition, MAC Coquette eyeshadow , which I purchased at the reccomendation of the salesgirl after I complained of my brows looking too red-toned despite whatever shadow I used. Hallelujah,  she was right. I also used the shade in the crease. On the lid I wore the product that I’ve used up two times and have been lusting after to repurchase since I began this blog, MAC All That Glitters which has the nicest sheen to it without being over-the-top and sits halfway between a champagne and a copper. There’s nothing like this shade to wear on the lid when you want a lighter neutral colour but are bored of the usual champagnes. In the inner corner and browbone, MAC Dazzlelight has been my go-to as it’s not overtly shimmery and looks natural. For definition in the outer-corner of the eye, I used Club but this shade I tend to switch up. I’ve been wearing a thin but slightly-winged line of my well-loved L’Oreal Lineur Intense and as always, I’ve been coating my lashes with good ol’ Maybelline The Falsies. This is one of those types of eye makeup that looks fairly natural on the lid but really defines the eye and looks polished.

If you know me, I’m not usually one to wear the same lip daily but lately I’ve been wearing darker lips (the blush makes this far easier) and particularly I’ve found myself going for MAC Dubonnet. Because of the amplified creme finish of the lipstick, it’s moisturizing but the formula does tend to slide around the lips with any sort of eating or drinking. I’ve discovered that blotting it slightly doesn’t reduce the hydration and really helps the lipstick to last longer with minimal maintenance – because of the creaminess of the shade, I used to find that if I wasn’t careful I could rub the lipstick off of my lips before it stained them creating that dreaded lipstick ring around the edges of the mouth.

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It’s difficult for me to get the balance right while wearing the darker lips that I adore; I need to add definition to my eyes and cheeks to balance out the face or bold colours tend to look hideous on me and what I’ve been doing has helped me to get the balance right (in my opinion!) and I wanted to share. This is my low-key and effortless dark lip sort of makeup choice and I will continue to wear it, I swear.

x,

Maggie.

Have you tried any of these products? What makeup products have you been reaching for daily?

& I’M A BREATHING BEAUTY BLOGGER CLICHE: Shopping The Stash #1

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You know you have a slight excessive beauty-product buying problem when you are constantly scouring the shelves of Sephora, whatever local department store there may be in your area and the magical emporium known as the drugstore – if you’re in Canada, Shoppers is my pick – for the latest treasure and were likely induced to do so by stress (you know how it is) when really all you had to do to find such treasures would be to scavenge through the assortment located in your bedroom known as the stash.

I know it’s in vogue currently to talk about the black impeccably-lined-up-co-ordinated-and-quite-frankly-still-intimidating store otherwise known as MAC Cosmetics as an overrated location of beauty product purchase, but it was my first makeup love and to this day, I still adore a good number of products in their selection. I don’t care how outdated I sound but their eyeshadows are fantastic and generally speaking, the products give you great bang for your buck. Before I’ve written amounts that could make an extremely disorganized essay, I’ll attempt to move onto blabbering about the neglected products.

MAC Club Eyeshadow ($12/18 CDN)

I really can’t explain why I use Club so infrequently. It’s in my older Mac quad that I successfully took the divider out of to fit more in that I look through a time or two during the week and when I do so, I resolve to use Club – somehow it never seems to happen. It’s a nicely textured, pigmented, creamy and whatever warm brown with a green duochrome that whenever I pass through MAC with a friend, I attempt to convince them that they need in their life. It’s one of those versatile medium-dark shades that can be worn in the outer corner on the daily but can also create that (relatively) effortless smoky eye — if you’re a regular reader here, you should know that I adore the smoky eye and especially the effortless variety.

MAC Club eyeshadow in all of its glory
MAC Club eyeshadow in all of its glory

MAC Springsheen Powder Blush ($25 CDN)

MAC Springsheen
MAC Springsheen

I’m fairly certain this was one of my earlier blush purchases and that I made it in ninth grade. I remember wearing this constantly until Sephora opened near me and from the moment my eyes met the matte-black packaging of NARS Orgasm, I tossed this one onto the side. It’s another one of those coral shades with fine golden shimmer throughout but it’s more of a true warm-toned coral than the infamous NARS blush. The texture is at least as good as the blush in comparison and I do rather like it on. My theory is that it pulled too bright back when I thought I had pink-undertones and constantly looked flushed as a result of the tragedy; now that I match my foundation to my much more yellow-toned body, I don’t have this issue whatsoever. Lesson learned: learn how to match your foundation correctly to your body and everything else will fall into place.

Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse Foundation ($11-14 CDN)

Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse Foundation in 110 Porcelain Ivory
Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse Foundation in 110 Porcelain Ivory

Ah, this would be one of the all-too-frequent stress-induced purchases that somehow manage to happen after dry winter skin frustration and a long busy day,week, etc. at school. I bought this in the time when every foundation looked slightly terrifying on my skin with dry patches galore and as I have dry skin and this was toted as a great dewy moisturizing formula (by Rosanna, from youtube’s rpiercemakup) at a good pricepoint…. It happened. This was in the phase a month or two back when I kept piling on the foundation to cover the skin irritation and consequently it looked even worse and I cast it aside, forgetting all about it. As with all other Maybelline face products, the shade range is horrendous but the medium coverage formula is a nice one especially on drier complexions. Obvs. I would expect to hear more on this from me in the foreseeable future.

Rimmel Lasting Finish by Kate Moss Matte Lipstick in 107($7-8 CDN)

Rimmel by Kate Moss Matte Lipstick in 107
Rimmel by Kate Moss Matte Lipstick in 107

It’s doubtful that writing the full title was really necessary and was tempted to merely write “that dark Rimmel lipstick”, as this is such a commonly praised product this year. I bought this in the fall and I liked the candy-scented longwearing but not drying matte lipstick but it wasn’t as vampy as I expected and I forgot about it. I think it’s more of a cool-toned berry red shade than it appears and somehow this made it’s way into the abyss of my cluttered lipstick drawer. I’m really going to try to wear this more and it bewilders me that I don’t use it more. It’s about as pink as I can go without looking ridiculous – if you’re new to this blog, I LOOK TERRIBLE IN PINKS and consequently have an abundance of red-toned shades. Yes, this lipstick, easily referred to as “that lipstick” that seems to be featured on every beauty blogged (and loved also) is worth it.

Rimmel 107, MAC Club, MAC Springsheen
Rimmel 107, MAC Club, MAC Springsheen
products in use: wearing the Maybelline foundation, MAC Springsheen on the cheeks with some highlighter and MAC Club in the outer corner and crease of the eye - taken with flash :)
products in use: wearing the Maybelline foundation, MAC Springsheen on the cheeks with some highlighter, MAC Club in the outer corner and crease of the eye and “that lipstick” applied onto the lips poorly and then blotted – taken with flash 🙂

Have you tried any of these products? And I’m even more curious to see if I’m the only one who completely neglects great products – if you’re like me, I’d love to know your discoveries from your stash! x

Maggie