Winter Nail Tips with CND Education Ambassador Jenn Mather

CND has quickly become a fan favourite polish company with offerings that include Shellac and Vinylux. CND Education Ambassador Jenn Mather gave us some great advice on what shades we should be wearing this season and how to keep our nails looking great during the harshness of winter.
What are your favourite nail shades and trends right now?
Right now, rich and indulgent colours like Indigo Frock, Rose Brocade, Crimson Sash, Fine Vermillion, Plum Paisley and Locket Love are favourites for fall. This is our Modern Folklore collection and can be used in VINYLUX and Shellac to create some of the season’s best looks that showcase detailed and intricate patterns, transforming nails into miniature masterpieces.
What shades should we be looking at going into the holiday season?
The colour palette for the holiday season includes magically iced and luxurious colours – think rose gold, icy blue and silvery pastels. Our Gilded Dreams collection can be used to create scene-stealing and glamorous nail designs.
Is there a trick to doing nail art so I have both hands looking great?
Start by painting your dominant hand first and keep a Q-Tip handy to clean up any errors made. Using thin layers of nail polish also helps!
CND Solar Oil
What are the nail essentials we all need to have?
If there is one thing I can’t live without its SolarOil®! Daily application of SolarOil® penetrates deep in the nail, creating stronger, healthier nails and hydrated cuticle area. l call it liquid gold because it helps your mani stay fresh longer. It’s a miracle treatment for all year round.

For winter it’s important to remember the three C’s:
- see your manicurist every 7-10 days for a manicure (at least a few times before the big day)
Condition – daily use of SolarOil to care for the cuticles and nails and applying a hand lotion like CND Scentsations, will keep your hands supple and soft throughout the cold winter months
Coat – Whether it’s CND VINYLUX Weekly polish or CND Shellac, a coating will help to protect the nail!

Clinique Black Honey Affair Limited Edition Collection

Black Honey Affair - Sephora Exclusive
I started using Clinique’s Black Honey Almost Lipstick while I was in high school in the ’90’s but I haven’t been using it much the past few years. Now that all things 90’s are coming back Clinique released a Sephora exclusive Black Honey Wardrobe, a Black Honey Affair All About Shadow Palette to go along with it’s cult fave Almost Lipstick.
Black Honey Wardrobe Open 1
The shades are exactly what you’d expect to go with the Black Honey Almost Lipstick. The left four shades are warm neutrals (including a shade called Black Honey) and the right four are on the purple end of the spectrum. It also includes a dual ended brush.

Black Honey Collection Swatches

Black Honey Affair, Black Honey Almost Lipstick

I’ve been using the left side almost exclusively for daytime and the right side for night. But all the shades work really well together and blend seamlessly. The actual Almost Lipstick is just as great as I remember. A sheer wash of colour that’s totally buildable, I really wonder why I stopped using it.

I wish the shadow palette wasn’t limited edition because I’m going to want another one when I empty the one I have but at least I’ve redisovered my love for the Black Honey Almost Lipstick. And since they sell one every three minutes, I’m guessing it won’t be a problem to replace it when I run out.

Winter’s New BB Creams & CC Creams

With winter coming, it’s time to pull out the thick, skin loving moisturizers. There are a new gang of BB creams and CC creams that are thick and creamy and perfect for dry winter skin. See which ones we want on our team:
Olay Total Effects CC Cream
Olay Total Effects CC Cream – If you want a CC cream that you can trust with your face then Olay’s Total Effects CC Cream is your best bet. This cream smells like your favourite Olay moisturizer with a light perfume smell. Olay’s CC Cream is thick, but not so thick that is it clumpy. It easily spreads over your skin in a thin layer that you can barely feel. It absorbs into your skin quickly leaving you with a dewy glow. It’s perfect for those no makeup days.
Aveeno Clear Complextion BB Cream
Aveeno Clear Complexion BB Cream – Aveeno newest BB cream does double duty. First it is a powerful moisturizer. With it’s light floral scent, it doesn’t even really feel like makeup. This BB Cream is surprisingly thick. It doesn’t spread as easily as some other BB creams, but it feels great on your face. It almost seems to illuminate your face. Aveeno’s BB cream has hidden powers though. It is also made to help reduce the appearance of blemishes, marks from past acne and help prevent future breakouts. I thought my skin was just getting better naturally, but when I realized it was Aveeno’s BB cream helping out, I was sold.
Neutrogena Healthy Skin CC Cream
Neutrogena Healthy Skin CC Cream – This CC Cream is the least like makeup and the most like an everyday moisturizer. Of all of the new winter makeup, this one was the most fragrant. If that kind of thing is a problem for you, steer clear of this cream. When it comes out of the tube, it doesn’t look thick at first glance. When you go to spread it, then you realize how thick it is. It leaves a protective layer on your skin that you can feel, but not in a bad heavy way. You need to give it a minute to dry and then it leaves your skin feeling moisturized and healthy. It doesn’t give much in the way of makeup coverage. It’s perfect for weekend days when you want moisturizing without something too heavy.
Marcelle BB Cream
Marcelle BB Cream – This BB Cream actually feels like a balm. If you have sensitive skin, especially in winter, this is an essential product. It’s a moisturizer, a primer and it gives you an even skintone all in one step. In typical Marcelle fashion it’s hypo-allergenic and recognized by the Canadian Dermatology Association. It also comes in six shades which is pretty much unheard of for BB Creams, so they’ve got almost everyone covered. And it feels amazing on your skin.

L’Occitane Revitalizing Fresh Hair Care

My hair has never felt cleaner and I would like to thank L’Occitane for that. I had no expectation for the Aromachologie Revitalizing Fresh Shampoo and Detangling Spray when I got it. I had never used L’Occitane’s hair care products before.
Revitalizing fresh shampoo
The first thing you are going to notice about the Revitalizing Fresh Shampoo is that it has a very strong smell. It’s packed full of essential oils (thyme, cedar, lavender, mint and grapefruit) to give you hair a deep clean. That makes for quite a smell in the bottle. I actually warned the other people in my house about it, because I didn’t want them to get a shock if they used it.

The smell is worth it though, because my hair has never felt so clean. It has a light foaming that doesn’t get really bubbly when you lather it in, just enough to let you know that it is worked. As I rinsed the L’Occitane shampoo out of my hair, I could actually hear that my hair was squeaky clean.

There is no Conditioner in this hair care collection, so I wasn’t sure what my next step should be. My hair felt clean and soft, but I’ve never not used a conditioner on my thick, curly, unmanageable hair. I used my regular everyday conditioner, but I was instantly sad that I was covering up my freshly clean hair.
Revitalizing fresh detangling spray+
Post-shower and mornings after, I used the Detangling Spray on my hair. It has the same strong scent. I sprayed it all over my morning hair. My hair was definitely easier to brush after a quick spray. If you have thick hair like me ensure that you spray on top and underneath your hair to allow your brush to glide through easily. It works well enough, but I probably wouldn’t go out and buy it again like I will the shampoo.

If you need a seriously deep clean L’Occitane is going to get all of that residue out. Be warned though, delicate hair might not be able to stand up to this hardcore shampoo and the smell is really really strong. If you are tough and want something deep clean, this is hands down the best detoxifying shampoo that I’ve ever used.

Mani Monday – essie Winter ’14 Collection Review + Swatches

I’ve always loved essie polish and I rediscovered just how much I loved it when I tried the summer collection, so I was really happy to try four shades of the essie Winter ’14 collection. Of the four shades, two were amazing and two were well, not.
Tuck It In My Tux
Essie Tuck It In My Tux Swatch
I don’t know why pale neutral shades are so notoriously hard to work with but this ivory creme shade was no exception. It was so patchy and while the second coat helped level it out a bit, it’s still more miss than hit. If I want a white shade from essie, I’m sticking with Blanc.
Back In The Limo
Essie Back In The Limo Swatch
essie calls Back In The Limo a sheer, bright, ripe melon but on me it looked more like I painted my nails with that flesh coloured crayon. I had the same application issues that I did with Tuck It In My Tux but three thin coats seemed to help a bit. Luckily I had more luck with the darker shades.
Jump In My Jumpsuit
Essie Jump In My Jumpsuit Swatch
This bright, classic red was a dream to work with. I had zero application issues and two thin coats were perfect. Jump In My Jumpsuit is a great red for the holidays.
Double Breasted Jacket
Essie Double Breasted Jacket Swatch
Double Breasted Jacket is the hero of this collection for me. essie might call it ruby but to me it seems more like a fuchsia tinged red. I literally didn’t want to take this one off to do other swatches and I can’t wait to put it back on. Two coats was all I needed to get the perfect coverage and just wearing it put me in a good mood.

I might not have loved half the shades I tried from the essie Winter ’14 collection but I don’t wear a lot of pale neutrals so I’m much happier that the darker shades are so fantastic and that I’ll be wearing them a lot.

Clé de Peau Celestial Beauty Holiday 2014 Collection

Cle De Peu Celestial Beauty Holiday 2014 Set
Part of what I love about holiday sets is the packaging but Clé de Peau takes the packaging to their Celestial Beauty holiday collection to a whole new level. Swash London designed it all based on key words celestial, journey, eternity, true beauty and light and boy did they deliver. But the outside is only part of what this makes this collection great. The inside definitely matches the outside.
Celestial Beauty Makeup Coffret
Cle De Peu Celestial Beauty Makeup Coffret Open
The Makeup Coffret is everything you could need to get your holiday makeup done. It comes with three shadows, two blushes (and brushes for both), a lipstick and a mascara. The shadow shades range from golden to a plummy brown, which could also double as a liner. There was a little fallout from the shadow, so you might want to be a little careful with application.
Shimmering Lip Gloss Trio
Cle De Peau Celestial Beauty Shimmering Lip Gloss Trio
I love the shades of these lip glosses, between peach and pink this trio has you covered. What I didn’t love was the lip gloss wand, which is basically a plastic stick, and I ended up using my fingers to apply which worked much better.
Powder Compact
Cle De Peu Celestial Beauty Powder Compact
This is my favourite from the whole collection. This is the powder compact I want in my purse always. It’s so pretty and the translucent powder inside isn’t too drying and really silky.

These are perfect gifts, even if all you do is look at them. Luckily they products inside work just as well.

Holiday Most Wanted: Tarte Sweet Dreams Collection

Holiday season brings out the prettiest palettes and Tarte has won our hearts with these holiday must haves:
Tarte Tres Chic Park Avenue Princess
Park Ave. Princess Contouring Palette – A gorgeous holiday glow is now ours thanks to this palette! This gold palette includes Tarte’s beloved Amazonian clay bronzer, blush and highlighter in shades that are perfect to get a shimmering glow. The matte texturing ensures that I am only shining in the right places, but the bronzer gives me a golden hue that is warm by the firelight.
Tarte Ladies Who Lash
Ladies Who Lash – If you’re a fan of anything to do with lashes, this set is definitely for you. The pearl-like handled limited-edition Picture Perfect eyelash curler brings a touch of elegance and the deluxe mini version of Tarte’s Lights, Camera, Lashes 4-in-1 mascara is the perfect mascara to add to your curled lashes. You’ll have long, defined, curly lashes that will last through any holiday party you’ll go to.
Tarte Kiss And belle
Kiss And Belle Lipsurgence Lip set – Lipsurgence is an award winner for a reason and this is the perfect set to try it for the first time or to just get a bunch of your favourites in one place. With four lip tints, two matte lip tints and two lip glosses, there’s a pencil for every time of day and occasion.

RoC Pro-Preserve Collection

RoC skin care is anti a lot of things this winter with their Pro-Preserve collection. This line is anti-dryness and anti-oxidant for younger looking and feeling skin.


I started my experience with the line with the Protecting Cream. This moisturizer has a rich, cucumber smell. The cream feels really thick on your hand and is still thick on your face. It gets absorbed pretty quickly though and leaves my face feeling dewy and moist without any tacky feel. I also applied it to my neck and décolletage for added moisture that is much needed as we move into winter. I didn’t think much of this cream until the end of the day. After a few days of using this cream, I started noticing that by the end of the day my face still felt dewy. After a long day of work and events, my face didn’t dry out. My face has never felt so moisturized!


For added protection, I added Anti-Oxidant Protecting Fluid to my daily regime as well. This cream is fragrance free and even lighter than the cream. It is supposed to be an added layer to protect my skin from the dangers of the world. I can’t be positive that my skin was protected, but like I said it was so soft.

I will note that, I can sometimes suffer from breakouts and RoC’s creams did make me break out after about two weeks of using them daily. Since these creams are for dry skin, if your skin has a tendency of getting oily, this moisturizer might be too much for your skin. If you want lots of moisture though, this cream is for you!

Hand Cream Most Wanted

Hand Cream Most Wanted 1
The second October hit, it’s like my hands knew winter was on it’s way and immediately dried out. And it’s only going to get worse from here. The one thing I hate about hand cream though is waiting for it to absorb so I can actually use my hands. These are my Most Wanted hand creams that not only work instantly but let you get on with your day in a hurry.
L’Occitane Shea Hand Cream
There’s a reason this hand cream is a classic. It’s thick, creamy and sinks into your skin super fast. I love that it still works even after you wash your hands.

CeraVe Theraputic Hand Cream
If you need to use something unscented and have really rough, cracked hands you need this hand cream. It’s not as thick as I was expecting but it literally absorbs instantly and you’re left with completely dry, moisturized hands. This is going to be a dead of winter staple.

butter LONDON Backstage Basics Intensive Hand Cream
This isn’t your typical Glycerine based hand cream. While it’s just as moisturizing as the ones you’re used to, it’s way less greasy. I’m not a huge fan of the scent but it does a great job keeping my hands soft.

The Body Shop Honeymania Hand Cream
Where has this scent been all my life? This is the lightest of the hand creams and something I reach for when my hands are just a little on the dry side. It’s not as thick as the others but absorbs just as well.

EOS Hand Lotion in Fresh Flowers
This hand cream is the perfect size for my purse and since it’s a flip top, I don’t have to worry about unscrewing a cap and losing it in the car. It’s also a super fast dryer and smells delicious.

These are my Most Wanted Hand Creams for the weather coming up, what are yours?

IT Cosmetics TSC Limited Edition Holiday Sets Sneak Peek

IT Cosmetics Holiday 2014 Packaging
I’ve tried a couple products from IT Cosmetics over the years and I’ve always loved them. And if you live in Canada you’ve probably seen them on The Shopping Channel before. We have a sneak peek of TSC’s exclusive limited edition IT Cosmetics holiday sets! These are only available on TSC November 14-15, so if you want them you have a really limited window of time to get them. All the sets come in a pretty silver giftbox and are wrapped with ribbon and a gift tag.
IT Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Essentials Palette
IT Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Essentials Palette
This palette has everything you could possibly need to do your entire face. It includes 18 Anti-Aging eyeshadows, 3 blush and blush tints, 6 Anti-Aging Collagen Lip Flushes, 4 Bye Bye Under Eye Anti-Aging Concealers, Vitality Glow Bronzer, Bye Bye Pores Silk Pressed Powder, Hello Light Powder Luminizer and Hello Light Cream Luminizer. It also comes with a card that gives you tips on how to use everything in the palette. And when it’s closed it can fit in your hand. This is perfect for someone who doesn’t use or buy a lot of makeup or are just starting to use it.
IT Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Matte Eyeshadow Palette With Shadow Brush
IT Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Celebration Matte Luxe Transforming Eyeshadow Palette
This eyeshadow palette has a great set of shades that’ll help you go from day to night. The transforming ombre radiance ribbon transforms the shadows from matte to pearl, giving you way more options. The shadows are really well pigmented and last a long time but they don’t feel heavy like some matte shadows do. It also comes with a dual ended shadow brush.
IT Cosmetics Lipstick Stain 6-Piece Holiday Kit
IT Cosmetics Lipstick Stain 6-Piece Holiday Kit
These lipsticks are so pretty and they smell so good (must be the cherry oil). They’re really more of a lip tint than a traditional lipstick but you can build up the colour and it feels more like a lip balm. And when it would normally wear off, it leaves a tint. This is probably my favourite kit.
IT Cosmetics Heavenly Luxe 6-Piece Essentials Brush Collection
IT Cosmetics Heavenly Luxe 6-Piece Essentials Brush Collection
I love brush sets and this collection has some great quality brushes. These brushes are sturdy! I haven’t had a chance to try all of them yet but the shadow brushes are super soft and don’t have any fallout. The travel case that comes with the brushes is the perfect size to throw in a purse or carry on without weighing everything down.

I have to say, I really love all these kits from IT Cosmetics. Since there’s a limited time to get them, you might want to set an alarm to remind you to pick a couple up. And maybe some for gifts because once you get them, you’ll want to keep them for yourself.

You can also find these at The Shopping Channel’s website.

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