Monday, March 31, 2014

Formula X 'Liquid Crystals' and 'Celestials' Nail Polishes (Review+Swatches)



Hey Everyone, 

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a great weekend. My weekend was, unfortunately, spent like most of March, stuck in bed. As I have mentioned in past posts, I suffer from fibromyalgia, a chronic pain condition, and due to the insane weather where I live (one day it's sunny and warm, the next day we have a full on snow storm), I've been dealing with a bad flare-up. While it has definitely been a rough month, my fingers and toes are crossed that I will be feeling better soon, as I am supposed to go to on a birthday trip to NYC with my Dad next week. 

On a more positive note, I have some exciting products to share with you today. As a complete nail polish junkie, I've spent many hours in Sephora staring longingly at their beautiful collection of Formula X polishes. With a large variety of finishes (xpolosive top coats, liquid crystals, celestials, etc.), and a huge range of vibrant colours, the Formula X brand offers an extremely unique line of nail polishes. 



Three-free (no DBP, Formaldehyde or Toluene), all of Formula X's paraben-free polishes come with a unique brush 'engineered to compliment their highly pigmented formulas giving you the most even and precise lacquer application'. 

Having vowed not to buy any more nail polish for a while  (I have a serious polish addiction), I have somehow managed to stop myself from picking anything up from the Formula X line, and, therefore, was more than thrilled when given the opportunity to test out some of their products recently (cue my happy dance). 

Below is a closer look at three of the new Liquid Crystal nail polishes and one of the Celestial polishes from the Formula X line: 


Formula X Effect Liquid Crystals Nail Colour in 'Wavelength': 
A sheer iridescent pink-purple polish packed full of hot pink micro-glitter, 'Wavelength' applies evenly and opaquely in two to three coats (not gonna lie, I loved the colour and effect so much, I kept adding more and more coats). Like all of the Liquid Crystals polishes, 'Wavelength' is comprised of crushed micro-crystalline and vibrant mica, which give the nails a unique and vivid, light-reflecting finish. 

Formula X Nail Effects Liquid Crystals Nail Colour in 'Fluorescent':
A sheer lime green polish packed with iridescent lime micro-glitter, 'Fluorescent' applies smoothly and semi-opaquely in two to three coats (this polish has more of a sheer finish). While this isn't a colour I, personally, would wear on its own (I'm just not a fan of this shade of green), I love the way it looks layered over a blue, mint or turquoise cream polish (I like using one coat of 'Fluorescent' over Essie's 'Mint Candy Apple' for a slight metallic effect). 

Formula X Nail Effects Liquid Crystals Nail Colour in 'Photoelectric': 
A gorgeous peacock blue packed with iridescent purple and blue micro-glitter, Photoelectric is intensely pigmented, applying opaquely in one to two coats. While the iridescent purple sheen isn't as noticeable on the nails as it is in the bottle (I wish it were a little more noticeable in the picture above), the overall finish is still striking, making 'Photoelectric' one of the pretties blue polishes I have ever used. 

Formula X Nail Effects Celestials Nail Colour in 'Moon Walk': 
A sheer white polish packed with silver and opal textured glitter, 'Moon Walk' applies opaquely in one to two coats, drying down to a 'unique shimmer-meets-matte textured finish' (the base polish is matte but the glitter still shines). Very long lasting (I had this shade on my nails for well over a week), 'Moon Walk' gives the appearance of crushed diamonds on the nails (it's stunning), making it a must have product in my books. 

The Formula X nail polishes retail for $15 CND/$12.50 USD, and can be found on the Sephora website and in Sephora stores nationwide. 

I can tell you, without a doubt, that I will be breaking my no buying nail polish rules while in NYC, and will definitely be picking up one or two more shades from the Formula X line. 

Have you tried any of Formula X's polishes? Any you recommend I pick up? Which of the above polishes would you most like to try? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Giveaway: Win a $150 Sephora Gift Card


Hey Everyone, 

Happy Saturday! Today, I have an exciting giveaway to share with you. I've teamed up with some of my fellow beauty bloggers to give one lucky subscriber a $150 Sephora gift card (not gonna lie, I kind of wish I could win...my current Sephora wish list is getting pretty long). This giveaway is international, just use the rafflecopter form below to enter. Once you have entered, be sure to check out the other lovely bloggers participating in the giveaway: 

OPEN INTERNATIONALLY AGE 18+ VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Make Up For Ever 'HD Pressed Powder'



Hey Everyone, 

While I love using my Make Up For Ever 'Pro-Finish Powder' (a long time favourite) to set my foundation, when touching up with it throughout the day, things can start to look a little cakey. So, I was excited when given the opportunity to try Make Up For Ever's new 'HD Pressed Powder'. A re-invention of Make Up For Ever's cult favourite 'HD Microfinish Loose Powder', the new HD Pressed Powder (this one is so much more travel/purse friendly) is talc-free, lightweight, silky and completely translucent (it gets rid of the shine without any powdery build up). 

Like the original loose powder, the new HD pressed powder combines silica, vinyl cross polymer and micro and spherical powders to 'help soften the appearance of fine lines and pores and create a soft focus effect on the skin'. 


Unlike the 'Pro-Finish Powder Foundation', which completely mattifies skin, giving it an almost flat looking finish, the new HD pressed powder, while mattifying (it takes away any oily looking sheen), gives the skin a vert soft, natural-looking radiant glow. 

Offered in one universal shade, this translucent powder, which contains hyaluronic acid to keep skin hydrated, is designed to work on any skin type, as well as any skin tone (don't be fooled by it's white colour, it is completely clear when applied to skin).  

While the product itself doesn't have any claims as to wear-time, I personally get a 3-5 hour wear before needing a slight touch-up (I have combination oily skin for reference). 


For me, Make Up For Ever's new 'HD Pressed Powder' has become a staple in my purse. While I continue to use my Pro-Finish Powder to initially set my makeup (I just like some extra coverage), I've come to love the HD Pressed Powder for on-the-go touchups, loving how it mattifies, without looking at all powdery (no more cake face for me). 

The new HD Pressed Powder retails for $41 CND/$36 USD, and can be found at Sephora stores and Make Up For Ever counters nationwide. 

What do you think of Make Up For Ever's new HD Pressed Powder? Does it sound like something you need to add to your collection? What is your all time favourite pressed powder? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

New: GOSH 'Lip Lacquers' (Review+Swatches)



Hey Everyone, 

This Spring, GOSH Cosmetics launches a line of high-shine Lip Lacquers made to 'replicate the flashy finish of a glossy, flawless manicure on your lips'. Encased in unique, nail polish inspired bottles (I totally thought these were nail polishes at first), the new Lip Lacquers combine Argan Oil and Vitamin E for a moisturizing finish that keeps lips feeling hydrated all day (these honestly feel like butter on the lips). 

Paraben-free, the new long-lasting lacquers, which come with an easy to use doe foot applicator, smell absolutely incredible (just like watermelon gum). With eight stunning shades, GOSH's new Lip Lacquers come in a variety of finishes from super opaque (these babies are pigmented) to a more transparent sheen (very gloss, with a hint of colour). 


While I absolutely love the packaging (it is so refreshing to see something new from the beauty world), the glass bottles may be a drawback for those wishing to travel with the lacquers/put them in their purse for daily touchups (they are small enough for travel, I would just worry about the glass breaking. 

With that said, I am absolutely in love with GOSH's newest lip products (I can't explain just how amazing they feel on the lips), and honestly think that they are a must-try for any of my fellow beauty addicts. Below is a closer look at six of GOSH's new 'Lip Lacquer' shades: 

GOSH Lip Lacquer in 001 'Innocent Lips': 
A nude beige with slight pink undertones and a hint of iridescent shimmer, 'Innocent Lips' applies sheerly for a barely-there, hint of colour. While I absolutely love this shade in the bottle (and when swatched on the back of my hand), it doesn't really show up on my more pigmented lips (it still feels great on). 

 GOSH Lip Lacquer in 003 'Sweet Lips': 
A light pale pink with slight blue undertones, 'Sweet Lips' applies fairly sheerly for a very subtle hint of colour. While I am not usually a fan of light pinks (hello dead lips), the fact that this has a sheer consistency makes it one of my favourites (no dead lips in sight). 

GOSH Lip Lacquer in 004 'Flirty Lips': 
A gorgeous peachy-coral, with a hint of iridescent shimmer, 'Flirty Lips' applies semi-opaquely for a light pop of colour (this can easily be built up for a more vibrant finish). Perfect for both Spring and Summer, this is definitely my favourite shade in the new collection (expect to see it in a future favourite's video). 

GOSH Lip Lacquer in 005 'Crispy Lips': 
A gorgeous, bright bubblegum pink with blue undertones, 'Crispy Lips' applies opaquely (this baby is not sheer) for stunning burst of colour. This is, for me, the perfect shade of pink (you can wear this any time of the year), and the one shade I recommend to all of the bold lip lovers out there. 

GOSH Lip Lacquer in 007 'Hot Lips: 
A coral-red with orange undertones, 'Hot Lips' applies semi-opaque;y for a stained, jelly-like effect. While this shade can be worn sheerly, it is easily built up for a more dramatic finish.  


GOSH Lip Lacquer in 008 'Dangerous Lips': 
A deep cherry-red with blue undertones, 'Dangerous Lips' applies very opaquely for a bold pop of colour (love!). Extremely moisturizing (you seriously need to feel these on your lips), this is, without a doubt, my new go-to red. 

The new GOSH Lip Lacques retail for $12 CND and can be found at Shoppers Drug Mart stores nationwide as of this month (I just spotted them in my local Shoppers the other day). 

What do you think of GOSH's new Lip Lacquers? Will you be picking any of them up? Which of the shades above would you most like to get your hands on? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Dior 'Fluid Sticks' (Review+Swatches)



Hey Everyone, 

It's a gloss, it's a lacquer, it's a lipstick. No wait...it's Dior's first all-in-one hybrid lip colour...the Dior 'Fluid Stick'. Light weight, long-wearing and extremely moisturizing, Dior's new 'Fluid Sticks' "combine maximum colour impact, glossy shine, and a 'no-makeup' feel in a lip colour boating sensational hold and comfort".

Insanely well pigmented, the new Dior 'Fluid Sticks' are bold and vibrant, applying evenly and opaquely in just one swipe. Unlike most of the liquid lipsticks I have tried, Dior's latest lip products are not at all drying, giving my always parched lips, a good dose of moisture (these feel incredible on the lips). 

With a beautiful high-shine finish, the new 'Fluid Sticks' contain no wax allowing for a ridiculously lightweight, non-sticky feel (it honestly feels like you have nothing on your lips). 


Of course, like all of Dior's beauty products, the packing of the new 'Fluid Stick's is ultra luxe with clear tubes shaped to look like they contain sticks of beautifully pigmented lipstick (I love that you can see the colours through the packaging). 

This is such an exciting launch from Dior, and one I think any beauty lover and/or Dior addict will want to add to their collection. I was recently sent the following four Dior 'Fluid Stick' shades for review and have to tell you, I am in love: 


Dior Fluid Stick in #338 'Mirage': 
A gorgeous nude-beige with strong peach undertones, 'Mirage' gives lips a more subtle (while opaque, this shade is not as bright as the three below), feminine look perfect for Spring. If you are wanting to try one of Dior's new 'Fluid Sticks' but want a more wearable, everyday look, this is the shade for you. 


Dior Fluid Stick in #551 'Aventure': 
A bold, bright coral with strong orange undertones, 'Aventure' applies completely opaque in just one swipe, giving lips a trendy pop of colour perfect for Summer. I am a huge fan of Orange lips for Summer (or any time of the year really) and like pairing this shade with a nude eye, bronzed cheek and lots of mascara 

Dior Fluid Stick in #575 Wonderland': 
A bold fuchsia with coral undertones, 'Wonderland' is my favourite shade from the new collection, giving lips a beautiful, high-intensity, almost neon finish (this shade is not for the faint of heart). This is, without out a doubt, going to be my go-to shade this Summer as long as I can keep it hidden from my Dior-stealing younger sister. 

Dior Fluid Stick in #754 'Pandore': 
A bold cherry-red with coral undertones, 'Pandore' adds a touch of glamour to any look making both my complexion and teeth look brighter. If you want a glossy red that will last nicely throughout the day, this is the shade for you. 

Mirage, Aventure, Wonderland, Pandore

The new Dior 'Fluid Sticks', which come in sixteen eye-catching shades, retail for $36CND and can be found at The Bay counters April 1st, 2014 (they can be found at all other Dior locations comes May 1st, 2014. 

What do you think of Dior's new 'Fluid Sticks'? Will you be giving them a closer look? Which of the shades above would you most like to get your hands on? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 

Monday, March 24, 2014

O.P.I 'Spotlight On Glitter' Collection (Review+Swatches)



Hey Everyone, 

This season, O.P.I wants to get fingers and toes sparkling with their new 'Spotlight on Glitter' collection featuring six absolutely stunning, Spring-inspired glitter nail polishes. Created to coincide with the launch of O.P.I's new 'Glitter Off' base coat (review post to come), the new collection showcases a variety of metallic finishes, holographic shimmers, multi-coloured glitters and more.  

Below is a closer look at all six shades from the new 'Spotlight On Glitter' collection: 



O.P.I Nail Polish in 'You Pink Too Much': 
A clear base with larger round chunks of rose gold glitter, and smaller flecks of silver and iridescent green shimmer, 'You Pink Too Much' is absolutely stunning. While this glitter applies nicely in 2-3 coats (depending on your desired effect) this is one you definitely want to wear over a coloured base as, in my opinion, it doesn't have enough coverage to be worn on its own (all photos show polishes on their own for reference). 



O.P.I Nail Polish in 'Desperately Seeking Sequins': 
A clear base with large round chunks, and small rectangular flecks, of holographic silver glitter, 'Desperately Seeking Sequins' (I absolutely love the name!) applies beautifully in two coats. While this is a shade I think you can wear on its own, I, personally, love the way it looks when layered on top of a grey or silver base. 


O.P.I Nail Polish in 'Rose of Light': 
A clear base packed with finely milled rose gold shimmer and large round and square chunks of holographic glitter, 'Rose of Light' is one of the most gorgeous glitter polishes I have ever used and definitely my favourite shade from the 'Spotlight on Glitter' collection (you know me and my rose gold). Opaque in two to three coats, this polish applies smoothly and evenly giving nails a gorgeous, metallic-like finish (I'm considering wearing this polish on my upcoming trip to NYC). 


O.P.I Nail Polish in 'I Reached My Gold': 
A clear base with large pieces of hexagon shaped gold glitter, and tiny round flecks of silver holographic glitter, 'I Reached My Gold', while pretty, is somewhat difficult to apply (the larger gold chunks of glitter are hard to get out of the bottle). Very sheer (this polish isn't as shimmer packed as the other shades), this super unique polish definitely needs to be worn on top of a coloured base. 


O.P.I Nail Polish in 'Chasing Rainbows': 
A clear base with both larger and smaller chunks of round rainbow glitter (pink, green, blue, red, etc.), 'Chasing Rainbows' applies beautifully in two to three coats (depending on your desired effect). An incredibly fun colour (I don't have anything like it), this polish can be worn on its own, but, in my opinion, looks best layered on top of a bold, bright base (think hot pink). 


O.P.I Nail Polish in 'Blush Hour': 
A pink jelly base with large round chunks of fuchsia and purple chunks glitter and small flecks of purple and silver shimmer, 'Blush Hour' has a thick, chunky formula that is, somewhat difficult to work with but applies opaquely in two coats. Unlike the rest of the polishes in this collection, this polish is best worn on its own, as it takes on a muddy appearance when layered on top of a coloured base.  

With a suggested retail price of $10.95 CND, the new 'Spotlight On Glitter' collection polishes are available in stores, salons and spas of this month. 

What do you think of O.P.I's new 'Spotlight On Glitter' collection? Will you be picking anything up? Which of the shades above would you most like to get your hands on? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

My Week in Instagram Pictures #37


1) New L'Oreal Extraordinaire Gel Polish System. 
2) Checking out two new BiorĂ© products. Loving the self heating mask. 
3) Should I get permanent colourful highlights? 
4) Little me in 1983...apparently I wasn't taught how to 'sit like a lady'. 
5) Formula X Nail Effects Polish in 'Moonwalk'. 
6) Playing around with Sephora's new Pantone collection. 
7) Finally got my hands on OPI's 'Glitter Off' base coat. 
8) Heading to NYC in 2 weeks to celebrate my birthday. 
9) Presents from my sister for my Chinese calendar birthday. 
10) Throwback to Dolce graduating in puppy class from 2007. 
11) NOTD: QuobyOrly 'Sweet Blush'.
12) Yummy treats from Soap & Glory.
13) My sister and I are ready for girls night in. 
14) Makeup station at my friend Amber's girls night in party. 
15) Loving the colour of this revlon matte colorburst in 'Showy'.
16) Sugar overload on girls night. 

Friday, March 21, 2014

Quo Spring 2014 Collection (Review+Swatches)


Hey Everyone, 

From eyeshadow palettes and lip glosses to brow powders, brush sets and and face palettes, Quo's new Spring 2014 collection celebrates the season with a mix of warm neutrals, petal pinks and pops of vibrant colour. Packed in one-of-a-kind iridescent mosaic cases (so pretty), the new collection is extremely versatile allowing for a variety of looks on a variety of skin tones. 

I was recently sent four items from the new Quo Spring 2014 collection and after a couple of weeks of testing them out wanted to share my thoughts. 


Quo Eyeshadow Palette in 'Spring Fling' ($20 CND/10g): 
From light pastels to deep smoky neutrals, this unique palette palette (I personally wouldn't have thought to put all of these shades together) was, unfortunately, a let down. While the deeper shades (the black, navy and plum) are nicely pigmented, the pastels have little to no colour payoff, needing to be heavily layered for even a semi-opaque finish (these do work better layered over a creamy white base). While incredibly smooth, the shadows in this palette seem somewhat chalky, slipping off of bare, unprimed lids within a matter of minutes.

 Below is a closer look at each of the colours in the palette: 
1) A light grey with slight purple undertones. 
2)  A smoky lavender with blue undertones
3) A soft pale pink. 
4) An off white with grey undertones. 
5) A plum with iridescent plum shimmer
6) A matte black.
7) A light pastel green. 
8) A pastel lilac
9) A deep, radiant-orchid. 
10) A deep navy with iridescent purple shimmer. 

While I have long been a fan of Quo's range of products, this eyeshadow palette is one I can't recommend as, unfortunately, both the quality and pigmentation of the shadows are sub-par. 


Quo Face Palette in 'Bare Minimum' ($21 CND/15.4g): 
With a gorgeous berry toned blush, a light iridescent pink highlighter and a golden bronzer, Quo's 'Bare Minimum' face palette has the quality and colour payoff the 'Spring Fling' eyeshadow palette is missing. Incredibly soft and smooth, the powders in this palette blend beautifully with little to no fallout (these are not chalky, thankfully). While each of the powders do contain some shimmer, when applied, they give the skin a soft glow rather than a chunky or glittery appearance. 

While I love the look of both the blush and highlighter, the bronzer is, in my opinion, too orange-toned to be used as an all over bronzer, and, instead, looks better applied to the cheeks as a nice golden-peachy blush. 


Quo Brow Palette in 'Arcade Quo' ($12 CND/2.5g): 
With a deep blonde toned powder, a chocolate brown toned powder, a translucent wax and a small, but surprisingly effective, brush, Quo's new 'Arcade Quo' brow palette works nicely to fill in sparse brows for a natural looking finish. Soft and creamy, the two powders are easily blended for a softer look, but can be layered nicely for a more dramatic finish. Creamy and silky, the wax is easy to apply (it's not a hard wax) locking brows into place for an all day wear. 

While the lighter colour works nicely with my brown hair and light complexion, those who are incredibly fair or have much lighter locks may find this palette a little too dark. With that said, I believe most skin tones will find this little brow set to be very useful. 

Quo Lip Gloss in 'Think Pink' ($10CND/6.3ml): 
A soft pink with slight peach undertones, Quo's new 'Think Pink' gloss has a nice colour payoff, giving lips a fairly opaque finish. Incredibly creamy, this vanilla scented lipgloss (it's a light vanilla scent, definitely not overwhelming) is on the stickier side, but, unlike a lot of the sticky glosses I have tried, doesn't leave the lips feel dry (I actually like the feel of these and I am not a sticky gloss fan). Long wearing (the consistency helps it adhere to the lips), this gloss lasts a good 3-4 hours on my lips before needing to be touched up (that is an awesome wear time for my lips which always seem to be bare an hour after I put on my lipstick or gloss). At $10 CND I think this gloss reviles some of the more well known drugstore lip glosses. 

Spring Fling Eyeshadow Palette

Bare Minimum Face Palette 

Arcade Quo Eyebrow Palette, Think Pink Lipgloss

The new Quo Spring 2014 collection, which includes two more eyeshadow palettes, another face palette, three more glosses and a brush set is sold exclusively in Shoppers Drugmart stores as of the beginning of this month. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Giveaway: Caryl Baker Visage 'Pantone-Inspired' Lipsticks



Hey Everyone, 

This spring, Canadian beauty brand, Caryl Baker Visage, wants to make lips stand out with their new collection of Pantone-inspired lipsticks. Bold and bright, these super creamy lipsticks are incredibly well pigmented, giving lips a full dose of opaque colour in just one swipe (these babies aren't for the faint of heart). 

With a light satin finish (they have a touch of shine when swatched), the new Caryl Baker Visage lipsticks appear almost matte on the lips, but, unlike the majority of the matte lipsticks I have tried, aren't overly drying or uncomfortable (personally, I still like to add a touch of balm underneath them as my lips have been incredibly dry the past few months). 

Below is a closer look at all three shades from the new Caryl Baker Visage collection:


Caryl Baker Visage Lipstick in 'Plume': 
Inspired by Pantone's 2014 colour of the year, this radiant-orchid toned lipstick applies beautifully and opaquely with just one swipe, leaving lips with a gorgeous high-intensity finish. While this lipstick is part of Caryl Baker Visage's Spring collection, it is the type of colour that will work as nicely in the Spring and Summer as it will in the Fall and Winter. 


Caryl Baker Visage Lipstick in 'Tuscan Orange': 
Inspired by Pantone's 'Celosia Orange', 'Tuscan Orange', a bright orange lipstick with strong yellow undertones, is unlike anything I own (most of my orange lipsticks have red undertones). While very well pigmented, this lipstick isn't as bold as the other two shades in the collection making it the perfect option for those who want to experiment with orange lipstick without having the whole 'traffic-cone' lip look. 


Caryl Baker Visage Lipstick in 'Cherry Blossom': 
Inspired by Pantone's 'Caynenne', 'Cherry Blossom', an insanely bright, almost neon pink lipstick is by far my favourite shade from the new Caryl Baker Visage collection (I'm barbie girl...). Incredibly well pigmented, this lipstick applies opaquely in one swipe reminding me of a lighter version of MAC's infamous 'Candy Yum Yum' (this one is, luckily, much less drying). 

Plume, Tuscan Orange, Cherry Blossom

The new lipsticks which perfectly compliment Caryl Baker Visage's new 'Passport to Beauty' Spring 2014 collection retail for $18CND each and can be found in Caryl Baker Visage stores as well as on the Caryl Baker Visage website as of the beginning of this week. 



GIVEAWAY
To celebrate the first day of Spring, I am giving away one set of Pantone-inspired lipsticks to one of my subscribers. To enter, please read the rules below: 

***please use the rafflecopter form below for all entries***

1) This giveaway is international. Anyone can win. 
2) Mandatory Entry: In the comment section below, let me know which of the three lipsticks you would most like to try (worth 5 entries)
3) This giveaway will end on March 31st, 2014. 

Extra Entries
-----------------
1) Follow me on Facebook (worth 3 entries)
2) Follow me on Twitter (worth 3 entries)
3) Follow me on Instagram (worth 3 entries)


a Rafflecopter giveaway