Category: PR Sample

The Body Shop Spas Of The World Most Wanted

Both of us recently had the chance to visit different Body Shop locations to get acquainted with their new products and to take some home to try out. Luckily both of us left with different products and it just so happened that we received items that both of us loved. Our most favourites so far are all in the ever growing Spas Of The World range, so we thought we’d do a post on our new Body Shop loves.

Alyssa’s picks

French Grape Seed Refining Body Scrub

I have really sensitive skin, so I’m always on the hunt for a good body scrub that will do the job and won’t tear up my skin. When I tried this scrub on my hand in the store I was amazed at how scrubby yet gentle it was. With a combination of French grape seed powder and sugar from Paraguay, you can really get that dead skin off without feeling like you scrubbed yourself raw. The scent, that I assume comes from the grape seeds, is amazingly fresh and because it’s got a creamy consistency, you can decide on the level of scrub you want. If I have a super dry area, I use a washcloth with the scrub to get really smooth skin. This is going to be a necessity for the next few months of shaving and waxing season and then in the winter when my skin gets flaky. One word of warning, this is way too strong for your face, so don’t try it.

Ethiopian Green Coffee Firming Body Cream

If you’re going to use a scrub, you’re going to need a good moisturizer after and this body cream is a match made in heaven with the French Grape Seed Scrub. I’m a coffee person, so I was already sold on this cream just by reading the name but it’s so much more than that. It’s a really lightweight cream that has Italian olive oil and Ethiopian green coffee that just melts into your skin and leaves you hydrated and smelling delicious but not greasy whatsoever. The consistency really surprised me because I usually find Body Shop moisturizers too heavy for me, but this one is absolutely perfect! It’s been a really long time since I’ve loved something from the Body Shop this month. I’ve already made a huge dent in the giant 350 ml tub and I already know I’ll be replacing it when it’s gone.

Stephanie’s picks

Tahitian Tiare Bath & Shower Oil-In-Gel

This body wash is so soft and silky. The oil-in-gel body wash is just the right consistency. Given the name, it’s understandable that you might worry that it would be too oily or even greasy. It’s just smooth on the skin. The scent is really faint and lush. There is a hint of florals, but I wouldn’t call it a floral aroma. There is coconut oil in it, but this isn’t another coconut body wash. After a couple of uses, I was surprised at how soft my skin was. It was undeniable.

Hawaiian Kukui Body Cream Moisturizer

This is the type of moisturizer that I associate with The Body Shop. It is thick and rich. In the past, body moisturizer from the body shop was always thick, but it didn’t absorb well into the skin. It always left some residue on my body. It feels like The Body Shop has corrected those mistakes with this cream. It still has the same thickness, but this time it really sinks into my skin. It works on even the toughest skin like elbows and knees.

Brazilian Cupuacu Exfoliating Scrub-In-Oil

I’ve used a lot of exfoliators, but none as gentle as this exfoliator. The sugar in this scrub is so fine that it works on everything from the sensitive parts to your rough spots. The oil is probably the most surprising part of this. It is better quality oil than a lot of the other drug store exfoliators that I’ve used. It leaves your skin feeling protected and highly moisturized. When paired with the other two products, it’s the perfect trio!

R+Co Waterfall Moisture + Shine Lotion

Toronto is starting it’s descent into humidity hell, otherwise known as summer and at this time of year, my fine, frizzy hair generally goes nuts and I give up and leave it up all summer. Even with my hair in a ponytail or bun, the frizz and fried ends need extra care or they poke through, so I’m always on the hunt for something that will make my life a little easier. Enter R+Co’s Waterfall Moisture + Shine Lotion. Made for fine to medium, long hair (me!); this super light lotion gives you intense moisture without leaving greasy, weighed down hair.

I use it on damp hair as a leave in conditioner/styler and on dry ends to throw some moisture back in my hair. Does it get rid of all my frizz? No. But it gets rid of a good chunk when I use it on damp hair and even more when I apply it to the frizzy areas on my dry hair. I really appreciate that someone gave us fine haired girls something that won’t turn our hair into a greasy mess when we use it on dry hair, because that’s the result of almost anything I put on my hair once it’s dry.

R+Co has a number of scents in their products (you can actually just buy the fragrance sprays) and this one in Waterfall is called Serious Gaze and it’s delicious. R+Co calls it a ‘bright Oriental essence’ and it has juniper berries, blood orange, rhubarb, leather accord, violet and dark woods. The combination of the lotion and the scent are going to make Waterfall one of my hair must haves this summer. And maybe I’ll let my hair down once in a while because of it.

Coach Floral Eau De Parfum

Perfume is one of my favourite things and I change what I wear constantly depending on my mood. For spring and summer, I like lighter, more floral scents and this year Coach’s new Floral Eau de Parfum is leading my favourites list. Unlike a lot of designer fragrances, Floral isn’t heavy at all. It opens with pineapple, citrus and pink peppercorn notes that are followed by tea rose, sambac jasmine and gardenia and dries down to white musk, creamy wood and Indonesian patchouli.

At first sniff, I definitely get a hint of pineapple, followed by the tea rose. All the other notes combine to make a light, floral, fruity, slightly sweet scent that doesn’t overpower. The bottle itself is quite large at 90mL but the oval shape makes it easy to hold. The classic Coach tea rose charm that’s attached is a fun touch. I love that you can turn the nozzle to lock it and keep it from spilling or spraying accidentally.

I haven’t used a lot of Coach anything in the past but this fragrance was love at first sniff and has piqued my interest in other things from the brand.

Tarte Mermaid Collection Most Wanted

Mermaid and unicorn makeup are everywhere right now and I totally get it. Between the pastels, metallics and all the colours in between; they’re just pretty and fun. Tarte’s new Mermaid collection is pretty big and has everything from an eyeshadow palette, tons of lip options, brushes and skin care and it’s all got mermaid themed packaging. It’s hard to cover a collection that large in one go, so these are my Most Wanted from the Mermaid collection.

Palettes are usually the focus of most collections and the Be A Mermaid & Make Waves collection is definitely a star. There are fourteen matte and metallic shades that range from neutrals to some pops of colour and the pigments are pretty great. Tarte’s shadows are generally my go to’s from day to day and this palette is definitely getting a spot in my routine.

Two of my favourite lippies from the collection are the Limited Edition Tarteist Quick-Dry Matte Lip Paint in Exposed and the Holographic Lip Gloss. Exposed is a gorgeous neutral pink that doesn’t leave your lips feeling dried out and while I don’t love lip gloss, the Holographic Lip Gloss isn’t sticky or tacky at all and so, so pretty.

Exposed, Holographic Lip Gloss, Gloss over Exposed

You can use these separately or layer the gloss over Exposed as a topper.

My absolute favourite from the entire collection is the Mermaid Skin Hyaluronic H2O serum. This vegan serum is packed with Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin B5, Algae and marine extracts and keeps your skin super hydrated and glowing. It doesn’t have a strong scent and literally melts into your skin. It’s on the watery side, so you have to be quick applying it but it’s so worth it. It feels so nice.

Now you’ll have to excuse me while I look into how to become a mermaid full-time.

Pretty Vulgar Bury Them With a Smile Matte Lipstick Collection

With spring finally here and the weather in Toronto slowly becoming bearable again, I’ve started to come out of my winter hibernation ‘blah-mode’ and have gone into full blown ‘cute-mode.’ You know that mode, where everything pretty and girly and pink just speaks to you on a ‘that would be sooooooo cute – I totally need that’ kind of level.  That mode where you finally want to dress up in cute spring outfits, let your gorgeous locks fly and rock a smile-worthy lip colour. This is where Pretty Vulgar’s Bury Them With a Smile Matte Lipstick Collection comes to play.

Pretty Vulgar is a relatively new brand that has become well-known for their glamorous vintage inspired packaging that never fails to bring that wow-factor. No boring black tubes here, instead the packaging is laced with delicate details that give the collection a feeling of old-time enchantment.

Once I got past the adorable exterior and actually tried out the vegan and cruelty free matte lipstick line, I was impressed. The attention to detail the company puts into packaging definitely wasn’t lost on the lip colour’s formula itself. I thought the lipstick was delicate and creamier than your average brand and a little went a long way. My lips also didn’t dry out at all using this line, probably thanks to the mango seed butter, shea butter, and avocado oil in the ingredients list. Staying power was slightly above average but don’t expect these colours to last through a full meal or night of drinks.

So my Spring search for all things cute has started off with a successful huzzah. My favourite colour of the line is easily 11 – Mood Swing, it really adds an adorable and bright pop of pink to my look and gives me one more reason to smile.

 

 

 

 

Most Wanted Relief For Dry, Itchy Scalp

We’re back! I’ve spent the past four month stuck in my house due to illness and it’s been taking a major toll on my skin. But it’s also been doing a number on my scalp. My scalp is dry and itchy all year long but once you add in how dry winter has been in Toronto this year and having the heat blasting constantly, my scalp has gone from dry and itchy to unbearable. I have oily, greasy and itchy scalp with super dry hair. So I was on a mission to find something that would help.

Kératase Spécifique Bain Divalent

I’m a huge Kérastase fan, so when I heard they were bringing out Spécifique, a line just for scalp issues, I was super excited. Unfortunately most of the products contain soy and I’m allergic, so I couldn’t try anything but this shampoo. Luckily Bain Divalent was exactly what I was looking for. It balances out my oily roots and my dry hair. It doesn’t fix all my scalp problems but it definitely helps with my hair issues that come from them. It’s really light and fresh and smells delicious.

IGK LOW KEY Cleansing Walnut Scalp Scrub

I originally got a tiny sample of this scrub from Sephora and the first time I used it, I hated it. It turns out there’s a learning curve to this one and I ended up buying the full size (the only actual beauty product I’ve bought so far this year). Once you get the hang of how to get this scrub to your scalp, it’s the most refreshing thing your head will ever feel. The walnut shells aren’t too large and the minty scent is cooling. I definitely recommend following up with a different shampoo and conditioner after but your scalp will feel amazing immediately after using this. I’m fairly certain this is going to be one of my staples going forward.

Garnier Whole Blends Oat Delicacy collection

Sometimes dry, itchy scalp just comes from sensitive skin and if that’s the case for you, this Oat Delicacy line is hands down the gentlest shampoo and conditioner I’ve ever used. The Oat Milk and Rice Cream blend are super soft and hydrating, while leaving your hair soft and not weighed down. It actually feels gentle when you’re using it. I honestly can’t think of another word for it. I don’t really care for the scent but the results are worth it.

Moroccanoil Dry Scalp Treatment

I’ve been using Moroccanoil for years but I haven’t tried too many of their other products. Unlike the other treatments I’ve used, this one starts before the shower. You apply this to your scalp in sections, wait up to ten minutes and then get in the shower, rinse it out and shampoo and condition as usual. Since this is an oil, I really expected it to get greasy but it really doesn’t. And the more regularly you use it, the less you’ll have to. Moroccanoil also recommends this for anyone sensitive to hair colour before they head to the salon to prevent itchiness and to protect the scalp.

If you use anything for dry, itchy scalp that isn’t on this list, definitely let us know. We always looking to try something new!

L’Occitane Solidarity Balm 2018

Happy International Women’s Day! I’ve started to really look forward to this day every year, not just because it’s all about celebrating women but also because it means L’Occitane’s Solidarity Balm is coming. Each year, L’Occitane releases a shea butter balm in a different scent for under $10 (it’s $7 CAD) and all the profits go towards women in Burkina Faso. This year the program for Women’s Leadership in Burkina Faso has three goals:

1. Writing a better future
L’OCCITANE has helped more than 10.000 women to learn how to read and write since 2008. It also supports the education of 450 girls for four years at secondary school.

2. Boosting ambitions
L’Occitane has allowed 8,000 women to benefit from micro-credit since 2009.

3. Revealing leadership
L’OCCITANE launched the “L’OCCITANE pour Elles” program, in 2016, to boost entrepreneur women’s actions and scale up their business.

The scent of the Solidarity Balm this year is apricot and while last year’s violet is still my favourite, this one is a really warm, happy scent. I literally use these balms on everything from cuticles to scrapes to random hair frizz. I currently have the cold from hell and I’ve been using on the chapped skin around my nose and my dried out lips. These last forever too. I still have a lot left of last year’s and even a little from the year before.

For $7, you’re going to want to stock up here, especially if you love this year’s apricot scent. So far I haven’t seen them repeat themselves scent wise. And you can help other women while you’re saving your own skin.

I can’t wait to see what scent comes out next year.

Lipstick Queen Dating Game Collection

I adore Lipstick Queens collections and their newest one, Dating Game is a set of four pink lipsticks perfect for Valentine’s Day. With the tagline flirt, date or fall in love – have a fling with pink! there’s a pink for every mood.

I have to say, I’m really not a pink person but these four shades are seriously pretty and super flattering. They’re all really creamy and comfortable with major colour payoff. They’re not transferproof but do a decent job sticking around but reapplying is going to be necessary, especially if you’re eating. The names of the shades are adorable as well; Good Catch (soft, rosy blush), Bad Boy (fuchsia), Mr. Right (warm, rosy pink) and Mr. Right Now (bold magenta).

I personally love Mr. Right but Good Catch and Bad Boy are close behind and Mr. Right Now is probably going to be Stephanie’s favourite spring lipstick. Even if you don’t manage to hunt these down for Valentine’s Day, you can always plan ahead for next year.

Most Wanted of 2017

Happy 2018 everyone! It feels like 2017 went by in a minute but we still found time to try a ton of products, some new, some new to us. These are our Most Wanted of 2017

Lush Scrubee

The first time I tried this scrub/body butter combination, Stephanie brought one back from London for me before they were available in Canada. I’ve been using it ever since and it’s hands down my most replaced product of the year. The combination of cocoa and shea butters and ground almonds and coconut shells leave you with incredibly smooth and moisturized skin. The little bee shape is adorable and the honey scent is delicious. It’s such a fan favourite that this originally limited edition product became part of the permanent Lush collection.

Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser

Glossier coming to Canada was a huge deal this year and we’ve had a chance to try a number of products but this cleanser has quickly become my go to face wash. The super light texture doesn’t dry out my skin and leaves it soft and calm. I usually use this after I’ve taken my makeup off but it does a decent job of getting off makeup in a pinch. I love that the scent is just as gentle as the texture and that it works amazingly well with my Clarisonic.

Invisibobble Meow & Ciao

I’ve been obsessed with Invisibobble since the first one I tried. I wear my hair up nearly all the time and this hair band doesn’t give me headaches but holds my hair in ponytails or buns without my fine hair coming out of them. Meow & Ciao is from the holiday I Live In Wonderland collection and the pretty purple shade is a nice change from the boring neutrals I’ve been using.

Benefit They’re Real! Mascara

This mascara has been a cult fave for years and I honestly don’t know how I hadn’t used it before. We received one in a Benefit holiday gift and I’ve been using it almost exclusively ever since. I don’t know where this mascara has been all my life but it’s consistently given me the best lashes I’ve ever had. I get a ton of length and volume and don’t have to use my eyelash curler if I don’t want to. This is going to be in my makeup bag forever.

Garnier Whole Blends Illuminating Moroccan Argan and Camellia Oils

I know both Argan and Camellia oils are used a ton in hair products and I’ve tried quite a few of them but something about this combination is just a winner. The shampoo has a unique texture (you can feel the oil) but it lathers really nicely and if a shampoo can be called comforting, this is it. The conditioner doesn’t feel really thick until it hits your hair, which means you don’t need a lot at all and you should use less than you normally would (trust me). The Illuminating Oil gets rid of most of my frizz and leaves my hair soft, manageable and shiny. This is probably the best drugstore shampoo line I’ve ever tried and I’ll definitely pick up more when I run out.

 

Sothys Paris Reflet – 2017 Limited Edition Make-Up Collection

Sothys Paris, a French based company known for their high performance skin-care lines, has released a limited edition makeup collection Reflet. This set is gorgeous and everything you’d expect from a company like Sothys! It’s sophisticated, elegant and creates the perfect timeless holiday party makeup look.

The collection consists of a dark smokey eye in either dark grey (10 – Gris Zinc) or plum (20 – Feutrine Prune), rose coloured blush (not in this review), bright lips in either red (320 – Rouge des arts) or a lighter rose (310 – Rose Lepic), and a red nail polish (310 – Rouge des arts). If you are looking for a super bold holiday look, combine the grey smokey eye and red lip, or swap in the plum smokey eye or lighter rose lipstick to soften things up just a tiny bit.

For all the makeup beginners out there, or anyone looking for some tips, Sothys also has a super helpful online video that shows you how to apply the Reflet collection.

The eyes – The smokey eye pencils are thicker and used for the base colour on your eye lid. Both the dark grey and plum contain shimmering glitter for a metallic, almost iridescent look. The smaller pencils are the eye contour pencils and used for shading the outside corners of the eye. The grey contour pencil has the same shimmer as the smokey eye pencils, but the plum is just a regular matte plum. These pencils applied so smoothly, it was almost as if they melted when touching my skin. They were also really easy to blend, making it one of the quicker and easier smokey eye looks. For a flawless finish I would finish the smokey eye off with a really thin application of black eyeliner.

The lips – The lip sticks come in a bold red and a lighter rose colour, both being matte. These were my favourite part of the entire set. They applied so smoothly, and once dried, the colour had minimal fade or transfer. The application felt so weightless and moisturized my dry chapped lips so well, I actually forgot I was wearing lipstick. If you’ve been looking for the perfect stand-out bold lipstick for a formal occasion, the red is perfect.

The nails – After trying out and loving the rest of the collection, I had really high hopes for the red nail polish, which is the same shade as the red lipstick. The formula is just a tiny bit runnier than I’d like, which means you’ll definitely need two coats for a flawless application, but on the bright side, it dried pretty quick and matched the red lipstick perfectly.

The verdict – Every piece of the collection I tried was a hit, with the red lipstick being the absolute must have star. I’d recommend this collection to anyone looking for an easy and seductive holiday party look.