Toronto’s in a heatwave this week so I’ve been wearing the bare minimum of makeup but that definitely doesn’t reflect my whole month. These were my necessities for July.
NARS Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow in Pasiphae
This is a brand new shade from NARS for fall and I’ve only seen it in one store on a shopping trip to Buffalo. I must have walked past it six times, each time thinking how pretty it was and how I needed it and boy does it live up to what I expected. I couldn’t get a photo to show how truly gorgeous this shimmery burgundy green is. I love that it’s got completely different finishes when used wet or dry. This is definitely my latest obsession.
Stila Stay All Day Precision Glide Brow Pencil in Blonde
I definitely don’t fill in my brows nearly as often as I should considering they’re almost white. But I do love a brow pencil and Stila’s Precision Glide in Blonde is perfect for me. It looks completely natural, is easy to use and lasts until I take it off. Which is in this heat is fantastic because who wants to worry about their eyebrows sliding off?
derma-e Microdermabrasion Scrub
My skin always feels more clogged in the summer because of all the sweating and this scrub makes it feel so much better. It’s really light and gentle but grainy enough that you actually feel it doing something. Plus it only takes a minute and lemon scent is amazing.
Lise Watier Rivages Bronzing Powder
I’m so fair that half the time even the lightest shades of foundation are too dark for me. So needless to say bronzers don’t really work for me. Rivages Bronzing Powder is one of the first that doesn’t make me look like a Kardashian, so when I want a little colour I use this with a light hand for a nice glow.
Marcelle Cleansing Cloths
Because I don’t want my makeup a sweaty mess in the summer, I use a ton of waterproof products, setting sprays, basically anything that’ll make it stick. That makes taking it off a real job. Marcelle’s Cleansing Cloths are fantastic at letting me take off my makeup without feeling like I’m taking off a layer of skin. These cloths are larger than most so I have more surface area to work with. They’re extremely soft and not too wet. I love that I don’t feel like I have a layer of film on my skin when I’m done and these get off even the most waterproof of mascaras.
We don’t usually do a ton of reviews on products we buy. Partially because we already have tons of press samples to review and partially because, well, we don’t buy as much as we used to because of previously mentioned press samples. But when I saw the Naked Smoky palette in person, I needed to buy it.
I love Urban Decay but unlike what seems like everyone else, I don’t love the Naked palettes. I own Naked3 and use it quite a bit but I need more diversity in a palette so I usually stick to palettes like Vice3 . Naked Smoky has so many more options than the other Naked palettes I’ve seen and it’s by far my favourite one. Just the packaging alone is gorgeous.
The twelve shades range from pink to taupe to silver, purple and black. I love that there are multiple finishes in one palette (satin, shimmer, matte). Each eye shadow is so pigmented that you really don’t need to use a lot but like most Urban Decay shadows, there’s a lot of fallout. Especially with the non-matte shades. But they’re extremely blendable and there are unlimited look options. Urban Decay also included four smoky look instructions. All the shades go well together and even if you don’t want to go smoky there are so many other ways to play around with this palette.
I never seem to like brushes that come with Urban Decay’s palettes but I actually really like this one. The bigger side is really fluffy and great for a base shade and the smaller side is perfect for blending and smudging to get that perfect smoky look.
It’s been a really long time since I’ve bought a palette but I’m glad I picked this one because I love so many things about it, especially since the shade will be perfect for fall makeup and that’s coming up sooner than we think.
My skin is a pain to deal with the best weather conditions but summer and winter are especially difficult. With extreme combination skin I get dry and flaky in the winter and oily but dehydrated in the summer and I’ve never found a moisturizer that really fixed my summer issues, until now.
Hydro Boost Gel Cream Eye
I don’t use eye cream as regularly as someone in their thirties probably should but the Hydro Boost Gel Cream Eye is so cooling that I’ve been using it a lot. It absorbs instantly and really refreshes my eyes so much that the moisture my skin is getting is really an added bonus.
Hydro Boost Gel Cream
This gel cream moisturizer has literally saved my skin this summer. My skin gets pretty oily but dehydrated at the same time and using a moisturizer meant for dry or oily skin gives me a whole new set of problems. For some reason Hydro Boost fixes the issues I have without adding more. The texture is incredible, it just melts into my skin and the Hyaluronic Acid keeps me moisturized without being greasy. It smells amazing as well. I’m so far deep into my first jar I’m definitely going to end up repurchasing a second.
I don’t know how my skin survived summer without Hydro Boost but luckily it won’t have to anymore and there’s a version for extra dry skin that I’m saving for winter. I’m betting it’ll work just as well.
I love nail art but I’m terrible at doing it myself. I can usually do one hand pretty well but the other? Forget it. Luckily Kiss’ Polish Pop in Abbey Road lets me have my nail art without all the frustration.
Each package comes with eight full-cover accent strips intended for an accent nail (or two) and a sheet of mini accents with birds, palm trees and neon bubbles. The smallest of the full cover strips were too big for my smallest nails but fit my middle finger perfectly.
The smaller accents take a little practice and are easy to lift up to replace, just make sure your polish is completely dry before you apply them.
I love how many options I get with this kit and that I can use it more than once. If you want fun nails for a music festival or a day at the beach or any time really, this is a great way to change up your nails.
Vapour Organic Beauty is the child of Krysia Boinis and Kristine Keheley who worked on other brands creating products and wanted to develop their own line of organic products. They worked to create healthy products that also had great performance and were sustainable. That is a lot to ask if you also want the products to work great.
Vapour Beauty created products that are all a minimum of 70% organic without the use of harmful chemicals. I was really impressed when I received Vapour’s makeup because they aren’t just organic, but they are also innovative. They are doing more than just making organic makeup. They are developing new products.
My favourite product in the line was the Stratus Instant Skin Perfector. I’ve never used something like this. The closest I could compare it to is a primer. It works great as a primer under your foundation, but you don’t need to. The Skin Perfector hide pores, helps with any discolouration and mattifies your skin, while keeping it radiant. All while being good for your skin. Talk about multi-purpose! I found on my skin it even gave me a nice shimmer in the light. It’s great for people who don’t want to wear a lot of makeup.
My other favourite product is the Siren Lipstick. I have a love/hate relationship with organic lipstick. I find they are either great or horrible. This one is on the great side. I’m not much of a dark lipstick girl, but I was totally addicted to the dark plum Torrid shade. It was rich, creamy, sexy and stayed on for a long time.
If you are looking for something natural and organic that actually works, check out Vapour Beauty!
I’m really not a foundation person and if I do wear it I don’t really go for full coverage. But I love Too Faced so I really wanted to try Born This Way. I took a chance on Porcelain because a lot of the lightest shades for foundation lines are still too dark on me. And that’s where the negativity ends, because this Born This Way has completely changed my thoughts on foundation. Infused with Coconut Water, Alpine Rose and Hyaluronic Acid, this foundation not only covers every issue on my face, it’s also comfortable and hydrating.
Born This Way comes in a heavy glass bottle with a pump and bottle is the first part of why I love it. I literally need one drop of this stuff to cover my whole face (I apply with my fingers), so I’m not wasting any product. Porcelain is my perfect summer shade and I’m hoping it won’t be too dark when I get paler in the winter months. My biggest test with a full coverage foundation is applying it without a primer the first time I use it. I have pretty large pores and I hate when foundation makes them stand out more. Born This Way actually minimized them to the point where I had to look for them.
Since the first use I’ve applied it a few ways. I mixed it with moisturizer for a lighter coverage, I used it with primer. I even used a tiny bit as concealer. Each way I tried worked. And each time it lasted until I took it off, even if it was over twelve hours later. I love it so much I’ve been driving Stephanie crazy talking about it.
I finally found the foundation of my dreams. If you want to see the shade selection, you can go to the Too Faced website.
If I’m getting a girly summer drink it’s probably going to be a Mojito and if you add in my love of lime and mint, The Body Shop’s Virgin Mojito line is right up my alley. With most summer collections smelling of coconut, this line is literally a refreshing change. We got to try three products out of the five in the collection and while I’d have liked to try the shower gel (I’ll be heading to a store to get one soon), I’m pretty happy with what I tried.
Virgin Mojito Body Scrub
I haven’t used a scrub from the Body Shop before and I was pleasantly surprised at how gentle yet effective it was. While you don’t get heavy duty exfoliation, you do get to use it more often because it doesn’t scrub your skin away. My sensitive skin isn’t a fan of harsher sugar scrubs so this one is perfect for me.
Virgin Mojito Body Splash
This is in fact, a splash. I wish it was a spray but the hole in the top of the bottle is small enough that you can get some scent on you without making a huge mess. It doesn’t last quite as long as I’d like but the scent is to die for. The combination of mint and lime and what smells like a hint of verbena is so refreshing for summer.
Virgin Mojito Body Butter
This body butter is so thick that it’s almost a solid and yet it absorbed into my skin really quickly and didn’t leave me greasy. My biggest complain with Body Shop body butters is that the scent doesn’t last long enough. That’s not the case with this one, the scent lasts for hours so I have moisturized skin that smells good all day.
I wish this line wasn’t limited edition because it’s definitely one of my summer obsessions. I have a feeling I’ll be stocking up because I know I’ll want more of these when they’re gone.
Cover Girl has a bunch of new products coming out and we’ll slowly make our way through them but when we received two of the four new Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Gloss shades we had to try them first. I previously had only tried one Cover Girl nail polish and I was so impressed I needed to try more. The formulas on these polishes are fantastic and the brush is one of my favourites. It’s long, really thin and flexible so it lets you get to every part of your nail with minimal mess to clean up on the sides.
Fury is a dark orange-red that leans more toward the orange side. Two coats went on perfectly and I wore it for days with barely any tip wear. These dry on the glossy side but I added coat of Seche Vite as well.
Mutant is a bright cobalt blue and it’s stunning in person. Not only did two coats last for over a week with zero chipping but it didn’t stain my nail a bit and I was expecting staining with this kind of blue.
Once again I’m loving Cover Girl’s Outlast Nail Gloss and it’s quickly becoming one of my favourite drugstore nail polishes.
I’m not a huge lip gloss person because I find most of them too sticky and kind of uncomfortable when they wear off but I’ve loved every Make Up For Ever lip product I’ve tried so I was more than willing to give their new Artist Plexi-Gloss a try. Plexi-Gloss has a really different applicator than most glosses, it’s split and takes a little getting used to but I ended up loving it. I didn’t find the formula too sticky, although it did have a little stickiness to it but it ended up feeling really comfortable and lasted a good hour one me before I noticed any fading.
205P Pearly Rose (Sheer)
205P isn’t quite as bright as it looks in the tube and it also isn’t completely sheer but it’s a great mid tone rose that’ll probably look great on any skin tone.
501 Purple (Opaque)
501 is not a shade I would ever choose on my own but it actually looked pretty good on me. It’s so opaque that it’s more like a lipstick and the pigmentation is incredible. I liked it so much I’m going to try to work up the nerve to wear it out more often.
Both the shades I tried had gorgeous colour and shine and were extremely comfortable to wear and with 35 shades to pick from, I have a feeling my biggest issue won’t be whether or not to wear Plexi-Gloss but how to pick from all the pretty colours.
Another month, another Birchbox. It seems like they’re coming closer together but I’m not complaining. July’s box teamed up with Best Health magazine and to be honest other than a subscription discount card in the box I really would’ve had no idea. That aside, I was pretty happy with my box this month, although I do wish Birchbox Canada would start adding more new brands. I see the American boxes and get really jealous but since I haven’t gotten anything close to a duplicate yet I can be patient. If you haven’t tried Birchbox yet, for $14.95 CDN/Month you get five deluxe beauty samples. You can find more information here. Here’s what was in my box this month.
I love that the contents insert tells you exactly how much the full size product is, I don’t really care how much the samples are worth but I want to know how much I have to spend on a full size product if I love it.
Gilchrist & Soames Spa Therapy Body Lotion
I did get a Gilchrist & Soames lotion in my May Birchbox but I like this one a lot better. It’s got a really light texture and is perfect for summer when you don’t want to over moisturize. The scent is fresh and kind of reminds me of cucumber.
Number 4 Clarifying Shampoo
Another brand I received in my May box (I got hairspray), this shampoo retails for $36-82! That seems pretty expensive for shampoo but it smells amazing so I’ll definitely be trying it. I wish they would automatically send the matching conditioner but at this rate I’m pretty sure I’ll end up with an entire Number 4 sample collection.
Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels
Steph adores these but I haven’t tried them yet. Summer is probably the best time to try them out so I’ll be using these really soon.
theBalm Balm Desert Blush and Bronzer
I’m so fair that I don’t use bronzer at all but I love the Balm so I tried it out and it’s actually not too dark for me. I would use it as an eyeshadow instead though. theBalm has the best sample packaging ever, it’s just a smaller version of their full size products and they’re adorable.
Vasanti Cosmetics Detox Nutrient-Rich Purifying Facial Cleanser
I haven’t used a ton of products from Vasanti but I’ve liked what I have tried so this cleanser will get used.
This box was pretty good but not my favourite and I still don’t really get the association with Best Health but I’ll use everything I received and that’s a win for a subscription box. Can’t wait to see what’s in store for me next month.
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