Battle of the Brow Gels!

Ding ding ding!!! Let the battle brows begin! I like the coloured gel products on the market now. I find them easy on a day-to-day look when I don’t want to sculpt/define my brows like on a full makeup day. I usually go straight for my benefit Gimme Brow, which I adore (more on it below) but I was prompted to look into an alternative when I saw that the canadian price for it went up from $28 to $30, which prompted me to look for cheaper alternatives.. pff $28 was already expensive enough.. thank you canadian dollar…  So I found 3 alternatives (without looking really hard..) from drug store to high end. Let’s get into it!

Let me start by saying that if you are in Canada, all of them hold the pro of being able to purchase them at Shoppers Drug Mart where you can eventually use your points and get it for free. So whatever option you chose for you, you could always get it with points!

My other point is that these are all tinted brow gels meant to fill in your brows. They need brow hair to adhere to. If you have little eyebrow hair, this product won’t do much for you and may not be right for you.

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Missy’s 2015 Favorites and Regrets

HAPPY 2016 EVERYONE!

2015 was an exciting year for me. In January I gave birth to my first child, by August I had made two new friends, in October I went on a holiday to Florida, by December I had lost over 55lbs (half baby weight/half ‘I ate too much’ weight), and throughout the year I bought ALOT of make-up (VIB ROUGE FOR LIFE!). All in all it’s been an unforgettable year of firsts and fabulousness. I tried out new products and brands and I was blown away by most and dissapointed by some. In this post I’m going to do a 2015 fave list and then talk about some make-up regrets.

There’s a lot of compromises you have to make as a new mom and one thing I wasn’t willing to compromise was looking/feeling good about myself. I made an effort every day to shower, get dressed, and apply at least a little bit of make-up. Now this didn’t happen everyday but I have to say I can count those bad days on one hand … (the Cheerios incident will live on forever in its infamy). I am also lucky enough to live in a community with lots of parks and city sponsored drop ins and library groups so I always had someplace to go. B.B. (Before Baby) I went for bolder brands, but during 2015 I embraced softer, build-able products that would look great at a park or on a date. I also liked products that wouldn’t wipe off onto baby.

So without further ado, Missy’s favorite brands of 2015 are

#1 bareMinerals

They get top marks for high quality natural looking colors that go on soft and are layer-able. Special mention goes out to their lip gloss and Royal Wardrobe palette

bareminerals be a force

#2 tarte

I loooooooove their lipsurgence line. The lip gloss/liner/crayon are gorgeous, moisturizing, and they last! I also picked up a holiday pack of 12 eyeliners which I use pretty much every day. I have no idea why they didn’t do another holiday pack like that but their loss. I also am starting to see the allure of their eye shadows which go on soft at first and then build to a beautiful lasting color.

tarte logo

#3 Clinique

Their cheek pop line is cute and perfect for creating a pretty flushed face. Their Chubby Eye Pencil in beige is part of my five minute face routine and it is the perfect travel companion.

Clinique Logo

#4 Benefit

I don’t think you’ll ever see me part with my ‘Hello Flawless’ powder foundation or ‘Instant Brow Pencil’. They are just good products! I’m now a fan of their industrial strength ‘Boi-ing’ concealer and ‘Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow’ liquid foundation which is proving to be awesome at covering up the lumpiest of hormonal acne flare-ups.

Benefit Logo

 

And now here’s the stuff that I wasn’t so fond of

#1 Urban Decay 24/7 Glide on Lip Pencil in Ozone (Clear) … this product kind of makes me feel like the ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’ fool. Is it working? I don’t know! I really can’t see a difference between this clear pencil and using nothing. I love my other 24/7 lip pencil but I would never purchase a clear one again. If anything I find it highlights any dryness on my lips. So blech.

Ozone... Is it on? Ugh what's the point???
Ozone… Is it on? Ugh what’s the point???

#2 Burberry. Burberry was a HUGE let down. I purchased one of their kits and it was just meh. nothing really swatched well and the products certainly did not last. I would hesitate before buying any of their pricey products again.

Burberry ... Stick to scarves and jackets please!
Burberry … Stick to scarves and jackets please!

#3 Benefit ‘World Famous Neutrals Palette in Sexiest Nudes Ever’ . It was just a badly chosen palette. First of all I wouldn’t consider really any of the colors nude except for the beige cream shadow. The colors just really don’t pair well on my eyes. I would wear them alone with other make-up but I find that defeats the purpose of the palette.

World Famous Neutrals - Sexiest (more like suckiest!)
World Famous Neutrals – Sexiest (more like suckiest!)

All in all 2015 was a great make-up year. I definitely had more loves then regrets! I hope 2016 brings some exciting new make-up my way!

Missy

 

 

Missy’s September 2015 Favorites!

September

Oh September that weird month that causes ‘first day of school’ anxiety even if you’ve been out of school for over a decade! I always get this need to organize in September (maybe because I realize that I have officially missed the boat for ‘Spring Cleaning’) and I want all my chores out of the way so I can enjoy the crisp, cool, autumn weather.

In order to celebrate my favorite season I’ve even decorated my house in a fall motif. I have autumn leaf table cloth in my breakfast nook, a sunflower centerpiece in my dining room, pumpkin spice candles, and harvest accents in my guest bathroom! Part of me is loving that I’m discovering a twee domestic side that loves ironic over-the-top adorable accents … and the other part is worrying that I’m just tacky (but that part can suck a lemon because I’m having fun!)

Make-up wise I’ve been experimenting with shimmering eyes and flushed cheeks to compliment the matte foundation and bold Fall lip colors.

When I’m in a hurry, I’ve been reaching for two nude chubby pencils to rim my waterline, inner corners, and my brow bone. It’s a natural way  to look bright-eyed and rested.

Benefit Cosmetics High Brow: This large oyster-pink pencil instantly brighten and lightens my eye area. Although it’s just meant for high lighting the arch of your brow I’m getting extra mileage out of it by also applying it to the inner rims of my eyes and below my bottom lash line.

Benefit Cosmetics High Brow
Benefit Cosmetics High Brow

Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes in 01 Bountiful Beige: This pencil offers a sheer, lightweight, creamy color that is easy to wear and apply. The formula glides on and is layerable and long-wearing. My favorite thing about his pencil is that it never needs sharpening—just swivel up to reveal more of the shadow!

Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes in Bountiful Beige
Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes in Bountiful Beige

I always find if I’m going to do a subtle eye I still need Va-Va-Voom eyelashes to up the sexy quotient. I know I’ve raved about this mascara before, but the Kat Von D Imortal Lash 24 Hour Mascara is the best thing since sliced bread! I actually misplaced this mascara for a couple of days so I was forced to try Clinique, D&G, and Make-Up forever samples. They just didn’t work as well as Kat Von D! Thank goodness I was able to find it! Her formula stays on your lashes without smudging or flaking and the weird brush lets you enhance ALL of your lashes! It’s the perfect finishing touch to a barely there eye look.

Kat Von D Immortal Lash 24 Hour Mascara and its crazy brush!
Kat Von D Immortal Lash 24 Hour Mascara and its crazy brush!

Now on to what I’ve been wearing to enhance my cheeks this month. I’ve been all over my NARSissist Blush, Contour, and Lip Palette mostly for the adorable pastel pink color called ‘Roman Holiday’. I find it’s a great summer cheek color that I’m mixing with deeper colors as I transition my look into Fall.

NARS NARSissist Blush, Contour, And Lip Palette
NARSissist Blush, Contour, And Lip Palette

I’ve been mixing my summery shades with Clinique Cheek Pop in Fig Pop. This blush is buildable and long-wearing. What’s nice is that this blush goes on sheer and virtually powderless. I find it looks fabulous with matte foundation or a luminizer.  This product also gets bonus points for looking amazing with it’s embossed gerber daisy!

Clinique Cheek Pop in Fig Pop
Clinique Cheek Pop in Fig Pop

 

I hope you are all excited for Fall too!

Missy

 

Fall 2015 Make-up Trends How-Tos – Matte Face


Last week I talked about the 90s make-up trends that are making their comeback on the runways this fall (click here to read). Since I started loving make-up in the 90s I thought it would be fun to recreate these runway looks and tell you about what products I think are the best to create them. I have to say that I’m lucky that I’ve amassed a ton of samples from Sephora, drug store, and other make- up purchases so I’m actually going to (gasp) go out of my comfort zone and try something new!

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Nat’s May Beauty Favourites!

I can’t believe that May has already come and gone. In my mind, June feels so far away and it’s not… it means half the year has passed… CRAZY!! May has been a weird and busy month. When I say weird, I refer to the weather, we had hot weather, lots of wind, cold weather and risk of frost more than normal. UGH! It was so busy with so many events, mother’s day, my husband’s and his dad’s birthday, gardening, oh so much gardening (but I like it). Phiew, I am tired just typing this. I was able to use some of things below because they made things easy and made me happy this month. Here we go!

Benefit Rollerlash Mascara

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SH*T Your Mother Should’ve Taught You: Covering up Scabs

*Be Forewarned – I’m going to be talking about the gross no-no of popping pimples – or in my case gouging my face … this is not for the faint of heart*

Alright people, pimples happen. They happen to bad people and the happen to good people. And when they happen to me I NEED to pick them. Sometimes it goes well. A pore disaster is averted, the muck is cleared away, and I can go about my normal make up routine without anyone the wiser … other times I get carried away … and this happens:

The pimple may be gone but the damage has been done!
The pimple may be gone but the damage has been done!
#nomakeup #nofilter (lol)
#nomakeup #nofilter (lol)

So I got this beautiful red scab by literally taking off a layer of skin trying to get at an annoying blackhead. I was doing my best to be careful and hygienic – using two Q-tips and then WHAM! A whole layer of epidermis is off and I’m left with a bloody C-shaped crater. Now as I said this isn’t new territory for me (you may also notice a couple of scab on my chin) but the thing is that I refuse to hide in the house when I make these blunders and I don’t think anyone else should either. So here’s a quick tutorial on how to cover up scabs.

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Let’s Talk About Swatching: Powder Blush and Bronzer Edition

Finding your perfect blush and bronzer is easier then settling on a foundation and a concealer because now you WANT the colour to stand out on your face (albeit not in a Bozo the Clown type of way … and let’s just all agree that clowns are scary). Therefore, when it comes to finding your perfect blush and bronzer it’s all about quality.

One of the worst things to watch out for is when a blush or bronzer is described as ‘light reflecting or luminizing’ … great concept when executed well but some brands just take it as an excuse to put glitter in their product. Do not buy the glitter products unless you’re trying to be Britney Spears circa late 90s. The look is done now … back away from the glitter (until it comes back into fashion of course 😉 )

Another thing to watch out for with blush and bronzer is when the brand boasts ‘cool tones’. Even if your skin tone suits ‘cool hues’ they are VERY hard to pull off in this case without looking like you’re dead. (I currently have alot of my ‘cool tones’ in a box labelled Halloween). I like to read in the description or see a golden shimmer to my blushes and bronzers.

Ok, so keeping those two points in mind, it’s time to swatch!

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Yummy Mummy Pick: Benefit Hello Flawless

Okay first thing: this whole being a mom business is tough work and it really makes you appreciate the stuff that works … and that you can apply one handed … while you have 2.5 mins to get ready … and your infant refuses to be put down …

I have been BEYOND loving this product aaaaaaaand it hasSPF 15! So on those days that I have (all those who don’t have children including my former self will gasp) time to put on my face lotion, sunscreen, or even a primer the Benefit Hello Flawless powder is my go-to solution for all over subtle foundation and maximum coverage.

hello flawless

Pre-baby, I would use this foundation powder to set my liquid foundation and concealer and ensure that everything on my face was one beautiful mask of porcelain. Then I would start contouring etc. And don’t get me wrong I STILL use it for that (and I recommend that you use it for that too) but then I had my adorable daughter who’s not always concerned that mum (that’s me!) wants to look nice and have people stare at the baby and not at her dark circles and blemishes.

It was on one of my daughter’s clingy days that I deftly made myself presentable to the outside world with the Hello Flawless powder with one hand! The compact is sturdy yet can be opened with a well positioned thumb. It fits in the palm of your hand, but also won’t tip over if you place it precariously on a counter. The brush that it comes with is amazing and evenly distributes the powder for a lovely finish that isn’t overpowering (very similar to the look you’d get with a big brush and loose powder.) The formula is very buildable so you can use the sponge provided or your fingers to layer the foundation to cover up any blemishes. Aaaaaand it has SPF 15 so my skin is protected and perfect in a minute (leaving me with a creative 1.5 minutes to find and put on tinted lip gloss, mascara, and an outfit)

It retails at Sephora for $42.oo so it’s not exactly cheap but DAMN it works sooooooo well right down to the last speck of powder.

If you’re someone who’s always in a rush and juggling things then I highly recommend this powder to you!

 

Missy

Missy’s March Favorites!


Hello all! It’s March which means spring is around the corner and the weather is insanely unpredictable. Seriously, it’s like Mother Nature has PMS for a month and can’t decide whether she wants to snow us in or flood us with a melt down – so she does both! During this trying month I’ve done some comfort spending and I’m excited to talk about some new products and some old faves.

New Faves:

BITE’s Butter Cream Lipstick in Rosewood:

rosewood

 

 

What can I say? Nat has me loving the Bite beauty brand. I’m not much of a lipstick girl (as I’ve lamented before I have insanely dry lips) but this lipstick had me intrigued. It’s infused with five nourishing, aromatic butters, including lavender, shea, almond, pomegranate, and chamomile so it’s the best lipstick/lip balm cross breed I’ve ever tried (and I’ve tried a BUNCH!). The fact that this line is all in neutral colours makes it super hard to choose which one to buy. I settled on Rosewood a deliciously neutral plum pink. It’s gorgeous in the packaging and on! The one thing I’m not a big fan of is the flat shape – don’t get me wrong, it’s cute, it’s just makes application to the cupid bow a bit more difficult without a brush (or q-tip in a pinch). Overall I very much appreciated this treat and I love even just wearing it around the house when I need a quick and easy beauty boost.

 

Tarte Park Avenue Princess Contour Palette

park avenue princess

I was able to pick up this beauty on sale in the new year and I have to say it’s a pretty palette for spring. I love how all the colors work together and the formula is divine. This is my first foray into Tarte complexion products and I have to say that I’m impressed with it’s long lasting sublime finish. Now I just need to find the time to improve my contouring skills! (And the weather needs to smarten up so I can walk down an avenue like a princess without slipping on ice!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Old Faves:

Benefit Cosmetics Instant Brow Pencil:

brow

This is a great pencil for fabulous natural-looking brows. I’ve used all sorts of brow products over the years such as gel, pencil, powder and every combo that’s been imagined but my search ended once I got a hold of this beauty. This waxy pencil glides on easily, keeps any unruly hairs in place and then, the best part is that it leaves a natural powder-like finish! The other great thing is that the pencil comes accompanied by a special blending spoolie so it’s two items in one! I love love love this product and I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to talk about it.

 

 

Ciate Nail Polish:

This nail polish lasts! Here’s a pic of this amazing peacock colour called ‘Superficial’ and it’s lasted over a week! Here’s a pic!

Ciate nail polish after one week of wear and tear!
Ciate nail polish after one week of wear and tear!

It’s sustained a quick application and a week of taking care of a house and an infant. It doesn’t have alot of the crap that other nail polishes have so I don’t feel bad wearing it around my little one.

 

Missy

 

 

 

Let’s Talk About Swatching! Concealer Edition

Concealer is the first beauty item I’d bring with me if I was ever stranded on a deserted island (and camping supplies obviously … but now I’m getting away from my analogy). I learned in grade 7 that a good concealer can boost your self confidence when you’re talking to people.  Since my middle school self was always wondering if someone was focusing on my zit, under eye circles, weird dark spot, etc. I learned that concealer can make all those faults disappear! However, it’s equally bad if you don’t have the right concealer which means people are looking at you and wondering why you have a blob of weird beige on your face.

Concealers have the double duty of needing to blend in with you skin tone but also correct inflammation and dark spots. Concealers have a tough job and it’s up to you to decide to spend your money on a good one.

Concealers come in many different forms – liquid, solid, and sometimes powder. While I’ve dabbled in all three I prefer solid concealer for my sporadic breakouts and dark circles. If you’re using a good liquid or powder foundation I find liquid and powder concealer, frankly, repetitive and they can be very tough to build up. Liquid concealer is, however ideal if you just have minor dark circles and larger areas of discoloration you wish to conceal. I recomend Clinique Line Smoothig Concealer and Benefit Hello Flawless or Bare Minerals Broad Spectrum Multitaksing Face.

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Let’s Talk About Swatching! Face Primer Edition

Alright Sheena I have heard your call out and I am ready to talk about swatching. As we’ve said before, we are not pros, however after years of wearing make-up, comparing, brands, and spending waaaaaay too much money I’m beginning to have a good idea how to tell if a make-up product is worth it’s value and if it will deliver what it claims. I’m going to walk you through how I decide whether a product is worth spending my money on and hopefully you can apply these tips to your next purchase.

Face Primer:
Face primers should be applied to the back of your hand and you should perform 3 tests before investing in one.
1) Choose a part of your hand that’s particularly red, rough, or veiny and then see how the application of the primer changes/blurs the imperfections. If the primer does nothing, put it back. If it improves the texture, blurs imperfections, or makes your skin look pearly (depending what your end goal is) then you can start thinking about the overall feel of the product.

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Yay or Nay Sunday – Special Edition – Review on the Benefit Advent Calendar 2014

If you have been following us during the month of December, you probably noticed a special page for the daily opening of the Benefit Advent Calendar (you can check out the series here).

Benefit Cosmetics - Advent CalendarHere is my review.. I am leaning towards the NAY side. And I am sad about that. I had high hopes for this as I love advent calendars, it was a very thoughtful gift from my husband and well, the high price of $119 doesn’t help.

For the price, I just think that it was not worth it.

  • Out of 24 boxes, 6 of them were not even makeup products. They where little cheesy items such as a super small note pad, hair ties, etc. I find this really really cheap. I could get some little dinky things at the dollar store or even something you would expect out of a Kinder Surprise… This may sound harsh, but for $119, I expect all makeup products in there. Its not like benefit doesn’t have enough products to sample. (click here if you want to see each item that was included).
  • Everything makeup product in the calendar was a deluxe sample of the products, many of which I have gotten for free with Sephora orders, low-cost subscriptions, etc.  This calendar is not the cheapest way to try their products.
  • The variety of the product was disappointing. 3 tints, 2 mascaras, 2 creams, 3 lip glosses…
  • I did enjoy some of the samples, like the bad gal lash, the that gal face primer, the it’s potent eye cream and the total moisture facial cream. However, some I didn’t, like the tints for example.

All in all, the calendar was fun, but I was left disappointed. It was not worth the $119, not one bit. I am glad, at least, that my husband got it on sale, or else I would feel terrible!

I hope that next year there is a better version of this however, I probably will not purchase it.

Did you get this item for December? If so, what did you think?? Leave a comment down below and give me your thoughts! I am curious to know if everyone thought the same thing as I did…

-Nat

Pregnancy Make-Up Tips

I have found that while pregnancy can give me an amazing glow (i.e. I’m sweatier) it has also changed my skin and face. I compare pregnancy to hitting puberty again. Everything looks different and let’s be honest, you’re too moody to really give a poop. BUT I’ve discovered that you MUST give a proverbial poop because otherwise the ‘nosy/concerned brigade’ of coworkers, family, acquaintances, and in-laws emerge and tell you how terrible you look and then proceed to list many different diseases that you and the baby might have.  So in order not to alienate yourself from possible baby shower gifts with some ill-worded rebukes, I will share with you how I got my work mates to stop telling me how ‘tired and run down’ I looked to telling me that I looked ‘glowing’ and that ‘pregnancy must agree with me’. What’s the old adage – if you don’t got it? Fake it!

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