August 2015 Favourites

While I might not have been able to keep up with blogging content throughout August, – or even the beginning of September – I was able to keep up with and organized with my handy list of the products I was obsessing over and gravitating towards all month long…

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NARS Audacious Lipstick in Brigitte ($39):  On a daily basis throughout August, I was happily applying this neutral rosy lipstick shade, either on its own or paired with a neutral lip liner. The formula is so gorgeous, pigmented and creamy and I can get it smudged along my upper lip when I’m being particularly careless, drinking coffee and the like, but otherwise it remains comfortable and intact for hours and hours. The shade has that brightening quality that works great with minimal makeup and when you’re looking worse for wear, but it also looks great with more dramatic makeup too.

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Colab Volume Extreme Dry Shampoo in London ($9-10): I’ve experienced my first true dry shampoo love with this intensively volumizing formula; with a quick spray, even from a distance, it adds drastic instant volume and texture that lasts for hours on end. It has a nice sophisticated high-end-reading scent that I quite enjoy and it does have a white cast, but it dissipates quickly and the effects are worth the extra effort.

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Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer in SX04 ($58): As I’ve mentioned before, I kind of adore the uber-pigmented and creamy formula of this multi-purpose concealing product, although I unfortunately do have to work with it quite a bit on account of picking out the wrong shade – I wouldn’t exactly describe this shade as a fair golden hue, as its quite orange-yellow on my moderately fair skin. With some work, I find it works underneath the eyes to conceal heavy duty circles and it’s particularly amazing to spot-conceal blemishes.

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Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette ($64): Essentially every single day in August, I reached for the latest Urban Decay palette without feeling bored by the shades in the slightest. I love the matte shades in the palette along with the more neutral shimmery offerings, particularly paired with the more interesting smoky shades for that neutral-but-smoky look that I adore. If you’re on the fairer side, as I am, this palette contains both a beige transition shade and a matte highlighting shade, along with a few traditional crease and outer corner, which is tremendously helpful. The champagne High and the golden Dirtysweet are both essential lid shades for me, I reach for Combust and Whiskey on a daily basis and I do enjoy the smoky shades such as Smolder to ‘smoke’ things out.

Sephora Collection Master Cleanse Daily Brush Cleanser ($19): With wearing makeup every day – or at least each day that I’ve been working -, I’ve been more inspired to keep my tools clean – to hopefully result in an easier application in the mornings and I’ve been loving this new instant alcohol-free cleanser. I like the slight residue it leaves because it seems to keep my brushes in ideal condition while still quick cleansing well.

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Di Morelli Moisturizer ($58): Through work, I’ve had the opportunity to sample some of the lovely products created by the Vancouver-based dermatologist and I have to say that I’ve been loving this moisturizer throughout the month and it might just be worth the price – as it comes with 100 mLs of product and is up there with my beloved Caudalie. It has that lightweight but thicker soothing texture, that my skin drinks up it quickly but it leaves my drier patches adequately moisturized all day, with its high panthenol content to help repair the skin barrier and nice assortment of the usual emollients etc.

What were you loving in August?
Maggie, x.

 

 

 

“Recent” Acquisitions & Thoughts

To state the obvious, I will admit that I have taken the longest break that I ever have from blogging and I apologize for that, but in my defence it was unintentional – things were crazy around work and I was falling a bit behind on my posts and then poof, my laptop finally hit the dust and I was without a computer for two weeks. My apologies for this and let’s get onto the post that I had started to write before this all went down.

I had some general musings to share before getting into the nitty gritty of things: I had been doing quite possibly far too much shopping in recent weeks and therefore, I had felt the need to share my thoughts on these items without overwhelming myself. To be completely honest, I find doing full-on reviews of products overwhelming but I hate the idea of simply going on about items that I’ve purchased without aim or purpose. As I’ve noticed that I can’t seem to get around to writing a dedicated review of a product until I’ve used it to death, – figuratively – I’ve been thinking that these more review-y acquisition posts might be in order for sharing my verdict on these more recent purchases.

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Sephora Collection Master Cleanse Brush Cleanser ($19): Makeup brush cleaning might be the most mundane, seemingly unnecessary and unappealing task so along with generally skimping on the chore, I’ve downright refused to spend any money on any sort of brush cleansing product. I used the (somewhat) recent 3x points even as justification to foray into brush cleansers, wanting to add one to my rotation for daily spot cleaning. This alcohol free but fast drying spray feels conditioning on brushes and works well to instantly remove makeup, particularly on eye brushes without fuss or time spent waiting for it to dry. It’s also nice because it won’t break down brushes but still has that instant effect.

Sephora Collection Pro Smudge Brush #11 ($23): I want to begin this with a funny story but I’m not sure that this is actually interesting in the slightest – I bought this brush along with the cleanser, inspired to invest in and take care of my brushes but I accidentally grabbed the wrong brush. Regardless, I used this short wide shading brush without noticing and fell in love with it anyway. I adore it for applying colour underneath my lashes and for building depth along the lash line and outer corner. I do note that the quality is impressive.

Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette ($64): I’ve heard quite a few less than stellar responses to Urban Decay’s latest palette instalment but I have to say that I really disagree. I do not find that the shadows blend into one another and I actually quite enjoy the shade selection, not finding it repetitive from their previous palettes in a problematic way or unflatteringly cool-toned. Because this palette offers a variety of smoky shades in different depths along with a nice variety of matte neutrals, a few of those light shimmery lid shades that I adore, and a mix of neutral, warm and cool shades, I find it to be perhaps the most versatile palette out of the collection. I do agree that many of the shades are close to others released in previous palettes but as an all-in-one palette, I don’t mind in the slightest because of the convenience.

Youngblood Natural Mineral Foundation in Barely Beige ($47.99): Being someone who suffers with dryness and foundation settling over patchy areas of skin and can suffer with sensitivity to certain powder formulas, I’m not usually one for these mineral powder formulas but since being exposed to this luxurious mineral makeup line at work and playing with the product, I couldn’t resist picking this loose powder up. It does feel weightless on the skin and provide coverage whilst almost looking undetectable and gives both build able coverage and a glow. I enjoy using it on its own for lighter coverage days and to set liquid foundations for other occasions.

Rimmel Lasting Finish 25h Comfort Serum Foundation in 103 True Ivory ($9-10): By no means did I need yet another foundation but I couldn’t resist picking up this affordable comfortable yet long wearing foundation, particularly because it’s been hot this summer and my skin has gotten a little bit more combination in the t-zone and I’ve been curious to find something a little more matte but that’s still flattering. This foundation has impressed me, providing a semi-matte finish and medium build able coverage that lasts without clinging to any uneven texture.

Colab Volume Extend Dry Shampoo in London ($9-10): I can be quite a harsh critic so I’m rather surprised that even my final product of discussion has greatly impressed me – in other words, the hype is authentic about Ruth Crilly’s dry shampoo formula. This one does leave a bit of residue that needs to be mussed with to eliminate but its worthwhile because it gives a dramatic amount of volume that actually lasts and doesn’t leave too much of a powdery feeling in the hair along with the grit it adds. I’m partial to the scent as well, with its slightly musky sophisticated notes that I can’t quite describe.

Any thoughts?
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.

The July Wishlist

Seeing as I don’t feel exhausted or anything of that sort today, I have the day to relax and that I’ve missed my regular blogging schedule as of late, I knew as soon as I woke up this morning that I wanted to write a blog post. However, I have so many different ideas for blog posts that choosing the first one on the list proved difficult but I did eventually figure that a wishlist would be most appropriate – it is a new month after all and after starting a new job and working a good amount, I actually might have some business buying at the very least some of these things…

Desktop2Wilfred Minou Printed Silk Camisole ($50 | Aritzia)

I’m still fixated on simplifying and generally sorting out my wardrobe and a nice semi snazzy camisole like this one that can be dressed up or down and does not show a ridiculous amount of boob has caught my eye and made it to the to-buy list. I saw this one in the store and it’s gorgeous and not ridiculously overpriced and I’ve got my eye on it now.

Ruth Crilly Colab Sheer Invisible Dry Shampoo in Monaco ($?)

I’ve always really wanted to get into the whole dry-shampoo shebang, but I’ve found that  they either don’t seem to do anything at all – least of all, add some texture and lift to my often drab roots – or that they leave this ridiculous white residue. I’ve been a long time follower of Ruth Crilly and I’m tempted to believe that her line does what it says so now that it has landed in Canada at an affordable price, I’m ready to try it out. I’m the most tempted to try out this unisex-leaning aquatic scent offering.

PF Candle Co. no 4 Teakwood & Tobacco Soy Candle ($24)

I might have managed to go a month without including a Bath & Body Works scented candle in my wishlist post but don’t think that I’m doing one without discussing a scented candle that I’ve got my sights set on. I’ve always wanted to try the kind of expensive more sophisticated masculine-leaning candle scent but I only knew that it was available online and I didn’t exactly want to pay shipping and all that but now that Urban Outfitters has opened and is stocking the gorgeous scent I’m not going to be able to resist for much longer.

Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette ($64)

I don’t necessarily think that the shades in the new Urban Decay Naked Palette are so unique that they warrant a purchase if you have one or two other rendition of the neutral palette series – especially if you own the UD Smoked Palette as I do. However, there is something about the collection of a dozen shadows featuring smokier tones, nice matte colours for the crease and practicality along with shimmery everyday paler lid colours for the less daring of us that makes me lust after it.

Paula’s Choice Resist C15 Super Booster ($48 US)

Both this concentrated antioxidant treatment and the next Paula’s Choice product has been featured a good number of times on my wishlist posts without actually being purchased but now that I’ve finished my sample of this product and am running low on all my products in the next product’s category, I’m ready to bite the bullet and make the purchase. I definitely saw a difference in the brightness and overall texture of my skin from adding a few drops of this pungent liquid to my everyday routine and I’m missing it in my life.

Paula’s Choice Skin Recovery Lotion SPF 30 ($26 US)

When I tried Paula’s Choice’s impressively hydrating and soothing mineral sunscreen, I was blown away because it managed to succeed in texture and formula as a moisturizer for my demanding skin while protecting it from the sun without irritation. Now that I’m almost out of every moisturizer in my possession, I’m ready to go all out for this relatively affordable one.

L’Oreal True Match Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator in N202 ($20)

I do completely acknowledge that twenty dollars is an awful lot for a drugstore highlighter that can’t be returned if it doesn’t fit my liking, but there’s something so appealing about this newly released mosaic one. I’m a fan of all things illuminating and more than that, I’ve been impressed with L’Oreal’s smooth non-powdery powder formulas in the last year that I have an inkling that this one will be right up my alley.

What’s on your current wishlist?
Maggie, x.