MAC Nail Transformations and Lacquer

It’s been a really long time since I’ve used any nail products from MAC so I was really excited when they announced they were releasing a new collection of lacquers with an all new formula and with it six tranformer shades. The new brush makes application really easy and smooth, none of the shades I tried had any streaking and evened out beautifully.
Quiet Time
MAC Quiet Time Swatch
Quiet Time is a straight up beige. And since shades like this are known for streaking, I was pleasantly surprised when it went on completely evenly. I could’ve gotten away with one thin coat but I did two and a topcoat just to make sure. This is one of the best neutrals I’ve used in years.
Midnight Transformer
MAC Quiet Time-Midnight Swatch
Midnight is a sheer black that’s supposed to change the shade of your polish.I tried it on Quiet Time so I could really look for a difference. After three coats of Midnight, Quiet Time changed from a light beige to a mid toned gray-beige.
Sour Cherry
MAC Sour Cherry Swatch
I’m not usually a red nail polish person but this shade is completely gorgeous. It’s a dark berry red and went on like a dream. I’m going to get a lot of wear out of this one.
Liquid Pigment Gold Pearl
MAC Sour Cherry - Gold Pearl Swatch
I tried this Gold Pigment on Sour Cherry and (from bottom to top) did one to three coats to varying results. I loved how two coats changed Sour Cherry and made it golden but you could still see the berry underneath. You definitely have to use Gold Pearl much more sparingly than Midnight.

I’m so completely impressed with the new nail collection from MAC and after seeing all the other shades they’ve brought out I’m going to have a really hard time not buying a ton to add to my collection.

Coloured Hair Most Wanted

Want to protect your coloured hair in the summer? It seems like everything in the summer from the sun to pools to smog is attacking your hair and making my new colour look dull. Here is what I have been using on my coloured hair to keep it looking great.

framesi shampoo

Framesi Color Lover Shampoo & Conditioner

I had never heard of this salon brand of shampoo and conditioner either, but Framesi gives you a more natural way to care for coloured hair. I’ve been using the Smooth Shine collection and it’s actually making my colour look better than before. I didn’t even know that was possible. I love the list of ingredients that includes quinoa, aloe vera and coconut oil. I wouldn’t eat weird ingredients, so why would I put it on my hair.

precious oils

L’Oreal Paris Precious Oils Color Radiance

You probably already use some kind of oil on your hair either before you wash, after or during styling, but none of them takes care of your colour like this one. L’Oreal’s Color Radiance Oil does the same things as all of those other hair oils, while protecting your colour and making it really pop too. Use it with care to handle frizz without greasy summer locks. Use it with a light hand though because it can go greasy in the summer, so less is more.

marc anthony conditioner

Marc Anthony Miracle Frizz-Smoother Leave-In Conditioner

As a part of the Color Care collection, this spray conditioner gives you amazingly smooth hair. I don’t often blow dry my hair at home, because it’s a pain. If you are like me, use this before you do blow dry because it will ensure that you get sexy smooth hair just like in the salon.

ANGEL-MASQUE

Kevin Murphy Angel Masque

When it’s finally time to pamper your hair, get this deep conditioner. Again, it is very natural with lotus flower, quinoa and bamboo extracts to strengthen your coloured hair. I liked it because it was no fuss and it left my hair feeling soft and strong.

Anastasia Soare Makeup Interview

Anastasia Soare
Anastasia Soare is known everywhere are the eyebrow expert. She has a celebrity following that includes Oprah, Madonna, Jennifer Lopez and many more and she has a hugely popular makeup line, Anastasia Beverly Hills that focuses on eyebrow products (although their contour palette is just as popular. So who better to ask our Most Wanted beauty questions?
What is your earliest makeup memory?

My earliest makeup memory is spending my Saturdays with my mother at the salon in Romania! I was very young, and my mother would always take me with her for her beauty treatments or getting her hair done. At the time I had no idea that one day I would be in the beauty business myself.
What is your daily beauty routine?
I like to keep my beauty routine fairly simple. Skincare is always important because it helps nourish the skin and keep it looking its best. After that, complexion is very important so I use the Anastasia Beverly Hills concealer and our iconic Contour Kit.  I finish off with perfect brows using Brow Wiz and Clear Brow Gel and I am ready to go. As far as lips I concerned, I like to change it up. It’s always fun to play with color so whatever the season calls for, I like to try. Right now I am loving bright corals.
Anastasia Bevery Hills Contour Kit - Pro
Why focus on eyebrows?
The eyebrows are the starting point for beauty. They shape the way people perceive your entire face. If you have the correct eyebrow shape for your features, you will look younger, and your entire face will appear to be in proportion.
What are 5 things you always carry in your makeup bag?
I always carry: Sunscreen, Brow Wiz, Clear Brow Gel, Anastasia Concealer, A fantastic lip colour
Is there an eyebrow shape that can work for everyone?
No!  Everyone’s face is different and everyone has different features.  Therefore eyebrows need to be adjusted so that they fit individual proportions. You have to take proper measurements of where your brows should begin, where they should arch, and where they should end. When you do this, you can properly design a brow crafted according to your bone structure.
What’s one thing that women do with their eyebrows that drives you absolutely crazy?
Well, I have seen it all, nothing surprises me anymore.  What I would love for women to realize is that over-tweezing your eyebrow can sometimes mean tweezing one or two too many hairs. The eyebrows are a very delicate balance, so it really is best to set a guideline for how you want your brows to look, and carefully tweeze around that area; or just have a professional show you how to properly tweeze your eyebrows.
If someone hasn’t really done anything to their eyebrows before, what’s the easiest way for them to start?
The easiest way for to start and have a good experience is to visit a professional eyebrow shaper that has a good reputation. They will be able to assess your eyebrows and tell you what looks good on your face.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow
If everyone had one eyebrow product, what should it be?
DIPBROW. It is waterproof brow color that can be as bold or natural as you want it to be.  Once you apply a tiny amount and blend, it creates amazing brow color that lasts.
Do you have any eyebrow tips that could make it easier for people at home?
Try a stencil. You will be amazed how much easier it makes your brow routine. It will help you choose a shape that is ideal for your face, and also will teach you about our Golden Ratio Technique, which establishes the ideal eyebrow for your individual features.

Thanks so much to Anastasia for answering our questions

Almay Smart Shade

Almay Smart Shade
I’m not sure how, but I recently realized I’ve never used Almay makeup before, so when they offered to send us their Smart Shade collection I was really excited to try it. Almay’s Smart Shade line is supposed to make choosing makeup a lot easier. Instead of picking from a million shades, you pick light, medium, etc..and let the makeup do all the work.
Smart Shade Skintone Matching Makeup in Light
Almay Smart Shade Skintone Matching Makeup Light
I usually have to choose the lightest foundation shades possible so I was slightly concerned that the light shade would be too dark for me. Unlike other shade matching foundations, it doesn’t come out of the tube white, it’s more like a light beige with little dots in it. It really did match my skintone perfectly and blended really well. I don’t really need a full coverage foundation so this was lightweight enough for me.
Smart Shade CC Luminous Primer
Almay Smart Shade CC Luminous Primer
This is called a complexion correcting primer. I call it a highlighter. I generally like my primers a little less on the luminous side, as I just want a base to throw my makeup over. As a highlighter this is fantastic. It does give you a glow but you only need to use a little.
Smart Shade CC Concealer + Brightener in Light
Almay Smart Shade CC Concealer + Brightener  Light
I’m lucky enough that I don’t have dark circles or bags under my eyes but I do occasionally need concealer for redness and random breakouts. The concealer side of this was just a little too waxy for me and just a little too dark but the brightness side was perfect for the inside corner of my eyes. When I mixed both sides though, I got a really decent concealer.
Smart Shade Powder Blush in Pink
Almay Smart Shade Powder Blush Pink
I tend to like powder blushes over creams because I find I have more control. And I love the idea of the Smart Shade blush. This is the kind of blush that takes a little work to get the top layer soft enough to get enough pigment and I’m still working on it. The shade blends beautifully though, but I wish it was a tiny bit darker.
Color + Care Liquid Lip Balm in Cantaloupe Cream
Almay Color + Care Liquid Lip Balm Cantaloupe Cream
This isn’t part of the Smart Shade line but it came with and it’s my favourite thing out of all of them. It’s a super sheer lip balm in a gorgeous peachy shade that smells like vanilla. It’s really creamy and makes my lips feel amazing.

Overall I love the idea of Almay’s Smart Shade line, it takes a lot of the guess work out of choosing makeup. I would definitely keep using most of these products but probably not on a daily basis.

Micro-Pedi Review

Micro-pedi

This is going to sound crazy, but I’ve never had a pedicure. I have a thing about people touching my feet. I just can’t imagine having someone handling and inspecting my feet for so long. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t wish I could get my toes pampered too.

The Micro-Pedi machine promised me that I could have some of the same pampering at home by myself as in the spa.

The idea is that this machine is a handheld file that removes dry or hard skin on the bottom of your feet. It’s small, light and fairly quiet for this type of machine. It makes a bit of a buzzing noise, but not even enough to scare my cat.

It felt like it was doing great things when I first put the spinning file on my feet. You can’t press too hard because it stops, so you won’t hurt yourself. That’s great for a novice like me. As I worked on my feet though, my disappointment grew and grew. While the Micro-Pedi did make my feet smoother, it clearly wasn’t a solution on it’s own. It only works to hide the problem smoothing out rough skin, but not eliminating it. It makes your skin look nicer, but not feel better.

The Micro-Pedi is a fun tool, but it’s not going to save you money from going to the spa. It might be good for people who can’t ever live without soft toes. They could use it between pedicures to maintain. It’s not a solution for those hoping to skip the spa altogether though.

Fefe Dobson Makeup Interview

fefe-dobson

Fefe Dobson broke into the Canadian music scene as a fiesty teen. She won us over with lots of attitude. This powerful songstress has stayed true to her rocking roots since the start. She’s never been afraid to be herself on stage and in videos. Her beauty look has remained true to her style whether that meant going natural with glossy lips and curls or modern and edgy with blunt bangs and black liner. In the video for her new single ‘In Better Hands’, Fefe Dobson shows off her signature look with winged liner, nude lips and dark nail polish. We asked Fefe Dobson for some quick notes on her beauty regime.

What is your everyday morning beauty routine like?

Wash my face and moisturize.

What will you never leave the house without wearing or applying?

Sunscreen and Eyeliner.

How do you keep your hair looking gorgeous?

Olive oil straight from the kitchen.

elizabeth and james perfume

Do you have a signature scent?

I just love vanilla, so my signature scents always have vanilla. Right now I love Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black.

What are 5 products that are always in your makeup bag and you can’t live without and why?

Urban decayBenefit, Elizabeth and James, black eyeliner and cash so I can buy more makeup!

Watch Fefe Dobson’s video for ‘In Better Hands’ now:

Summer Makeup Most Wanted

Summer 2014 Makeup Most Wanted
When summer hits, most of us don’t want to wear a ton of makeup that’ll melt off, let alone carry around a huge makeup bag for touch ups. Here’s a list of summer makeup essentials that will make it just a little easier to look done without a ton of products.
Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish Shadow Primer
Smashbox 24 Photo Finish Shadow Primer
This is my number 1 necessity for wearing any eye makeup during the summer. This primer seriously works. Anything you put on top of it whether it’s shadow or liner or both will stay put until you take it off, even through humidity and sweat. Put a small amount where your bottom liner goes and it won’t wear off. Also, if you want to blend work fast because once something sets, it’s not moving.
Laura Mercier Sheer Creme Colour in Golden Pink
Laura Mercier Sheer Creme Colour Golden Pink
This gorgeous pink shade can be used as a highlighter, blush or luminizer. You can use your fingers for application or touch ups on the go. It’s really creamy and blends well.
Quo Gold Rush Eye Palette
Quo Gold Rush Eye Palette
This neutral palette has everything you need to go from day to night. You can use the darkest shade as an eyeliner and the gold tones are perfect for summer.
LORAC AfterGlo Eyeshadow Palette
Lorac AfterGlo Eyeshadow Palette
I bought this on a recent trip to Ulta (my first!) and it’s not available in Canada as far as I can tell, but the colours in this palette are amazing. The pigmentation is fantastic and if you’re a fan of bright colours for summer, this is the palette you need.
Gorgeous Cosmetics Liquid Lips in Malted
Gorgeous Cosmetics Liquid Lips Malted
Everyone has hopped on the bright pink or coral lips for summer bandwagon but if you’re going with super colourful eyes, a more neutral lip is probably a better idea. Malted is the perfect ‘your lips but better’ shade and the formula is similar to MAC’s Lipglass. It feels really smooth on your lips and wears well.

What are your must haves for making summer makeup easier?

Rococo Nail Apparel

Rococo Nail Apparel Case
The first time I’d ever tried Rococo Nail Apparel was when I was getting a manicure at the Murale Summer/Fall preview. The shade I tried was a pretty blue called Smitten. I liked it so much I wanted to try more shades and see how it went on when I applied it myself. The first one I tried was a deep plum shade called Purple Reign.
Rococo Nail Apparel Purple Reign Creme Swatch
Purple Reign is a true creme, there was no shimmer at all. The brush holds on to a lot of polish and the texture is a little squishy so getting a thin coat took a little work but once I got the hang of it, it went on really nicely.
Rococo Nail Apparel Trash Creme Swatch
Trash was the second shade I tried. Another creme, this one was easier for me to put on since I’d already figured out the best way to do it. Trash is a bright red that’s almost in the dark pink territory. I really love this shade and I’ll definitely use it a lot.

Both of these swatches are two thin coats and a top coat. The only issue I had was with the wear time. I noticed the tips on Trash were wearing off almost immediately, even with a top coat but Purple Reign lasted longer. Rococo’s shades are gorgeous though and I can’t wait to try more.

Rococo Nail Apparel is available in Canada at Murale.

Sara Canning Beauty Interview

sara canning remedy

Ever since her time as Aunt Jenna on Vampire Diaries, we have adored Canadian actress Sara Canning for her porcelain skin, wide eyes and long waves. Now this rising Canadian star is appearing alongside a stellar cast on the hospital drama Remedy. While we wait for season two of Remedy, we caught up with Sara Canning to find out what keeps her looking fresh after working long hours.

What is your first makeup or beauty related memory?

Sara Canning: My first makeup-related memory has my childhood best friend and me playing in the forest, under ten years old, getting glamorous in a tree fort with an Avon lipstick she’d smuggled from her mom’s make up bag. We definitely obliterated that lipstick in the process of putting it on.

What will you never leave the house without?

Sara Canning: I always moisturize and put on sunscreen: I like to mix Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer with Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Cream SPF 50.

Do you have any tricks that you have learned on sets?

Sara Canning: I like to ask my makeup artists for their secret remedies and skincare dietary tips. One artist told me about toothpaste on zits. Another motivated me to start making green smoothies daily.

Do you have any products or treatments that you splurge on?

Sara Canning: I’ve gotten one facial in my life, from Breathe Spa in Vancouver. It was incredible. I fell asleep halfway through the massage portion of the treatment and when I woke up, I was so relaxed I couldn’t move. If my skin ever decides to freak out badly again, I will giddily skip back to Breathe Spa.

What is your latest beauty obsession?

Sara Canning: Lately, I am really loving minimalist make up looks. I just spent an adventurous few weeks in LA hiking, playing soccer baseball with other Canadian transplants and having potluck picnics. My uniform was very tomboy and ready-for-anything, and my make up mirrored that. I’m sure I will be back to loving strong lip colours once fall rolls around and I’m running about in Toronto!

Fresh-Sugar-Lip-Treatments

What are 5 products that are always in your makeup bag and you can’t live without and why?

Sara Canning: I always travel with Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, as it’s the best for soothing dry and irritated skin. I also use a vitamin C serum under my moisturizer. Benefit ‘They’re Real!’ mascara is my go-to. I have Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments in an absurd number of shades, because I love them both as a balm and a way to quickly jazz up any look. And I just bought the Too Faced Chocolate Soleil bronzer, which smells like its namesake. That was a major selling point for me.

Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics Summer Most Wanted

Youngblood All
As summer gets warmer I find myself using way less makeup than I normally do and I’ve been noticing that the products I’m reaching for the most are from Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics. This company was new to me when I received these products and now it’s one of my favourites (I have a wishlist of what I want to try next). We’ve already put Youngblood in our Bronzers Most Wanted post. With the addition of mascara, these three cosmetics can get me out of the house looking made up without me worrying about my makeup melting all over the place.
Eye-Mazing Liquid Liner Pen

Youngblood Eye-Mazing Liquid Liner Pen Swatches
Noir, Azul, Verge, Marron, Gris

I’ve never been good at any kind of liquid liner or eyeliner pen until I tried these. They’re so easy to use and get a perfect line, even if you think you won’t be able to do it. I use these with a primer but even without them, they last a really long time and don’t smudge. I don’t think I’ve used a pencil liner more then twice since I started using these. Just make sure you close the cap tightly, when I went to take the swatches I noticed that Gris wasn’t closed properly and was almost dried out. These are also vegan and paraben free.
Anti-Shine Mattifier
Youngblood Anti-Shine Mattifier
Unlike a lot of mattifiers I’ve tried that come in liquid primer form, this one comes semi-solid and with a sponge. And it really really works without leaving your skin feeling tight or dried out. It’s almost clear and feels silky, almost like a balm. Considering how shiny I get in the summer, I’ve been getting a ton of use out of this.
Hydrating Lip Tint SPF 15
Youngblood Hydrating Lip Tint SPF 15
If there’s one thing I hate about throwing tinted lip balms in my purse, it’s looking for the caps when they fall off. The packaging for these lip tints are genius. They’re spring loaded so once you snap them closed, they stay closed. The shades are sheer and feel like you’re not wearing anything but they’re also super flattering and hydrating.

You can find more info on Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics here.