Goodies from Tarte


Ahh, the Tarte Shape Tape Concealer. Has there ever been so much hype surrounding a beauty product? I’m not sure I’ve ever heard of such a unanimously adored concealer as this – not even the NARS or Urban Decay offerings from the past few years have ever gotten so much universal love. And you know what, after trying all three of them, I can totally see why. Of course people have different skin types and requirements, so for me, I found the NARS colour selection to be off for my skin, not to mention far too cakey for under the eyes, and the Urban Decay one oxidized way too much (just like all UD face products I’ve tried).

The Shape Tape is the pretty much the perfect concealer – it’s lightweight, easily blendable, and has the fullest coverage of any concealer I’ve ever tried. It works for under the eyes and isn’t too radiant for covering blemishes. The packaging is quite interesting, the tube is much bigger than other concealers, and the doe foot applicator is positively giant. A tiny bit of this stuff goes a LONG way, it’s actually insane. I picked up the shades Light Sand (yellow undertone) and Light Neutral, which as you can see in the swatches, are actually quite different, Light Neutral being much darker than Light Sand. To get the perfect shade for me I do have to mix them a bit but that is fine. I still haven’t gotten much sun this year so in the summer I’ll definitely have to buy a darker shade, but for now the two I picked up are working great.

While I was ordering, I decided to also try out one of the new Color Splash Lipsticks, which I’ve heard good things about it. Because the formula is more hydrating, I decided to go with a nude, so I picked the shade Sunkissed, which is described as a ‘pink peach’ but I would really describe more peach and quite a bit warmer than a pink. It goes on smoothly and looks great with a gloss on top. I think I’ll get a lot of wear with this one throughout the year.

Have you tried the Shape Tape Concealer and what do you think? What other Tarte products would you recommend?

A Few Things From Beautylish…

I’ve really been on a buying spree recently…………. I guess the effects of the whole no-buy last year hit me hard! Anyway, I thought I’d share a few things I picked up from Beautylish.com, which is one of my favourite online places to shop – they have good variety and carry brands that aren’t at Sephora. They also ship to Canada for free if one spends over $35, so it’s kind of great. Packages always come really quickly and nicely wrapped too, so I highly recommend ordering from there!

Jouer is a brand that isn’t really available in Canada, not that I’ve found, anyway, so I picked up two things from them – the Anti-Blemish Matte Primer, which I’ve heard good things about, and the Essential Lip Enhancer. Neither of these are overly exciting, but they’re solid products. The primer has a lovely lotion-y texture that sinks into the skin quite nicely, unlike those thick silicone primers that I hate. I haven’t used it long enough to tell whether it makes a difference with breakouts, but it does feel nice and keep me matte a bit longer than usual. The lip balm is meant to be a plumper – I don’t think it does much, nor is that something I’m looking for, but it is really soothing to put on dry, cracked lips. I really enjoy it and would repurchase.

Something else I’ve really been dying to try is the entire line from Charlotte Tilbury, but especially the cream eyeshadows. You know I have a slight problem when it comes to brown eyeshadows in cream form, so of course I had to grab one of the Eyes to Mesmerise in the shade Bette, which is an amazingly metallic golden brown. The texture is very light – kind of whipped, and the shadow goes on quite sheer, which is nice, because it can be built up but also used as a light wash of colour for everyday. It doesn’t crease on me and it lasts all day – I can see myself picking up other shades in the future…

The two makeup items I actually bought I’ve been a bit on the fence about because I’m just not sure what to make of them. The It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream in the shade Light is sort of a repurchase for me – I tried the a mini before but the colour was wrong. Light actually suits me perfectly right now. I wanted to get something with SPF for the summer but I find that this is too oily on me after a couple hours, regardless of how I prime/set. It’s a shame, but I will definitely continue to use this up. I also grabbed a Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in the shade Masochist, which is a deep fuchsia colour. I’m not a huge liquid lipstick user, but I was really curious to try the brand, despite all the online controversy, and I do like it – the texture is really nice, and it doesn’t dry out my lips the way other liquid lips do. But the applicator is huge and I find it a bit difficult to apply with precision. It also doesn’t dry down completely.

All in all I’m quite pleased with my haul and will continue to purchase from beautylish.com. What have you tried from there and what would you recommend?

A Few Loves…

On the heels of my last ‘meh’ post, I figured I’d follow with something a little more positive. Over the last few weeks/months, I’ve found a few products that I am absolutely in love with, and would repurchase over and over again if possible.

The first one is the Soap & Glory Smoothie Star Breakfast Scrub, which for some reason, they don’t sell here. I bought this in the UK and have been using it almost everyday since I came back. It’s an absolutely heavenly sugar scrub that smells exactly as described and leaves the skin really soft and smooth. If I could get my hands on this again, I would buy it 100x, and I don’t even normally like body scrubs. Please bring this product to Canada S&G……!!!

The next thing I’ve been super loving is the Benefit Gimme Brow in shade 5. This stuff has been on my wishlist FOREVER and I finally picked it up in a sale last fall and only cracked it open a few weeks ago because I ran out of my other brow gel. As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I don’t use anything else in my brows other than tinted gel since that seems to do the trick – my brows aren’t overly sparse or anything so they just need a little help, and boy does this product ever help. The brush is tiny, and the gel has little fibres in it to make the brows appear fuller, and it doesn’t leave the hairs feeling crusty or tight. If this stuff wasn’t so darn expensive I’d be buying it all the time. Oh well, time to save up those Shoppers Optimum points…

And lastly, this has become an absolute handbag staple for me – the Revlon Super Lustrous Lip Gloss in the shade 215 Super Natural. I’ve always enjoyed this line of lip glosses, but I think Revlon has changed the shades up a bit from what they used to be (?). In any case, this is basically the most perfect pinky-nude gloss I can find for myself (at an affordable price point). It’s unscented, non-shimmery and doesn’t wash me out like a lot of nude glosses do. The texture is also perfect for a lip gloss – not too thick or sticky and feels moisturizing on the lips. I hope they don’t discontinue this colour ever!

What items have you been loving recently and what would you recommend?

The Sephora Birthday Haul 2017

Seems like I have been buying a lot of things recently – though it’s also true that I have been running out of things left right and centre. My birthday was a few weeks ago and as per my usual tradition, I’ve been to Sephora to pick up a few items as well as the free birthday gift. To be honest, most of these buys are pretty boring – I had to get another Sephora Collection Solid Brush Cleanser, and a Nails Inc. 45 Second Top Coat with Kensington Caviar, both of which are staples in my day-to-day routine. I also ran out of nighttime moisturizer so it was time to go back to my old faithful, the Laneige Water Sleeping Mask – it’s honestly the best for my oily/combo skin, especially as spring and summer are approaching.

The one new thing I did spring for is the Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser, which I had used a sample of while away. It’s a wonderful milky cleanser with some beads to help with manual scrubbing without being too harsh. Skin feels soft and clean afterward, which is awesome. This is definitely not a cheap product, but the bottle is gigantic and will probably last a good while. I’m also quite excited about the  minis I got, a 100 point perk of the Sunday Riley Good Genes Treatment, as well as the Caudalie birthday set.

What have you picked up from Sephora recently and what would you recommend?

The England Haul: Part 2 – Drugstore



Ah, foreign groceries and drugstores. Is there anything else more exciting? …at least to me. Boots and Superdrug were both major targets for me on my trip as I know there are loads of affordable brands we can’t get here. I hit up the big Boots at Oxford Circus and came away with way too much stuff – but I’ve found that despite the exchange rate, drugstore prices in the UK are actually great and wonderfully affordable.

The first thing I was after was of course the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer. I’ve heard SO much about this concealer and Collection is not  brand I can get my hands on over here. I picked up the shade 3 – Warm Medium. I really like the texture – creamy and very pigmented. The only issue I have is with their terrible shade range: there are only 4 shades and 1 – Fair is far too light for me, while 2 – Cool Medium is obviously too cool, and shade 3 ended up being way too dark for me. I’ll have to save it for using in the summer when I pick up quite an intense tan. Another Collection product I decided to pick up was something that I haven’t heard much about – the Illuminating Touch Brightening Concealer in shade 2 – Natural. I am hoping to use this under my eyes but haven’t tried it yet. The Fast Stroke Eyeliner is one I’ve heard a lot about so I thought I’d pick it up as well. I got the Velvet Kiss Moisturising Lip Cream in shade Cotton Candy for free since I bought other Collection products. I haven’t used it much yet but it’s very comfortable to wear and the colour is lovely.

Some random other products I picked up but haven’t tried yet are the Natural Collection Brow Gel in Dark Brown, Barry M Sunset Nail Paint in Fuchsia Generation, Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Peel Off Face Mask, and the two items I’m most excited about – the Fleur de Force By Eylure Lashes in Fleur Loves, and the La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo (+). I’ve heard a lot about the Effaclar Duo and we can get a version of it over here, but I’m almost certain the ingredients are different.

Full sized skin/hair/body products were another priority of mine, despite the annoying fact of having to lug all the big bottles home, but luckily I packed light initially so I was able to bring home the Charles Worthington Moisture Seal Hair Healer, which I’m quite excited to try, as well as the Original Source Shower Gel in Mango, which is going to be great for the summer time. I also picked up two facial scrubs – the Sanctuary Spa Radiance Exfoliator, and the Botanics All Bright Purifying Face Scrub (are you seeing a theme here?). I also had to pop into Superdrug to pick up the Zoella Wondrous Whip Body Cream to see what her line is like.

Another store I was dying to go to was Kiko Cosmetics, which is another store that exists in the UK and US, but not here, sadly. There were a ton of things I wanted to pick up but in the interest of not hoarding I limited myself to only three products. I obviously went a little concealer crazy this trip – I picked up the Natural Concealer in shade 02, which comes in a tiny tube. It turns out this one is also too dark for me but it blends out beautifully and I will be cracking it out in the summer time. Something else I’m super excited about is the Velvet Passion Matte Lipstick in shade 304. It comes in the most unique, luxurious packaging and I am really excited to wear this colour in the spring/summer. Lastly, I had to grab one of the Extra Sculpt Waterproof Mascaras – I really don’t need more mascara in my life right now but couldn’t resist since KathleenLights loves the Extra Sculpt… and it was on sale!

The very last product pictured is the Satin Matte Nail Polish from Primark, which I haven’t tried yet.

Whew – that was a lot of stuff but I don’t think I went too crazy with the shopping. What are your UK favourites and what would you recommend I try next time?

The England Haul: Part 1 – SpaceNK

I’m baaack! Sorry for the long delay but I have been away and of course while I was out of the country, I bought a ton of beauty products that I needed (wanted??). The main goal for me was to hit up SpaceNK, which is a store they don’t have here and I suppose is kind of like Sephora for Brits. I was quite excited to find one close to my hotel and picked up a few bits and pieces to try.

First up, and most expensive, is the Sarah Chapman Overnight Exfoliating Booster. This is a UK brand that I don’t think is sold in stores anywhere here in Canada, so I figured I had to try something. This looked the most promising – I’ve used it the last couple nights as my serum step. Feels nice but I haven’t seen any results yet. Another skincare item I got talked into buying is the Goldfaden MD Pure Start Gentle Detoxifying Facial Cleanser. It’s meant to be used as either a makeup remover, or second cleanse, and is perfect for those of us with combo skin. I haven’t actually used this yet but I have high hopes! Anna has spoken at length about the Smith & Cult nail polishes, and since I’m an easily-convinced sucker, I had to pick one up since I don’t think they’re available here (and Beautylish.com doesn’t ship them to Canada). I will say the huge chunky lid makes it sort of awkward to apply the colour, but otherwise, it applies beautifully – no streaking, and it dries quickly. I would love to pick up more shades, but they’re not cheap at all.

Two items I had to grab out of sheer curiosity and not availability (I can easily buy these at Sephora) were the NARS Sheer Glow Foundation (in shade Ceylan) and Bumble and Bumble Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil. Both items are actually cheaper to pick up in GBP rather than CAD, especially when you consider that most of the tax can be refunded at the airport (I got 18% of the overall price refunded to me). Sheer Glow is of course a cult favourite that I’ve been hearing about for years. It’s quite pricey so I thought why not pick it up while I can get it a bit cheaper? The shade is quite light and yellow-based, which is good for me at this time of year. And miraculously, this foundation does not oxidize one single iota! It’s a bit harder to blend than other foundations I’ve used, but once it’s blended in, it sits nicely on the skin. The Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil I actually needed since I’m running out of my current hair oil. It’s lightweight and not greasy at all, so not sure if I’ll repurchase but I will definitely enjoy using the bottle while I have it.

What are your favourites from SpaceNK and what should I try next time?

Hopping onto the Colourpop Train



ColourPop…probably one of the biggest breakout brands in the last couple years – the name has been on everyone’s lips and the products on everyone’s faces. I finally jumped on the bandwagon around Christmas – I had browsed the site about a million times but never bitten the bullet. Around the holidays, however, there was a discount on some of the products due to KathleenLights and her work with the brand. So I figured, why not? I placed and order and started playing a bit with these products.

The first thing I noticed is that the texture is WEIRD. I have absolutely no idea how to describe it – if you haven’t tried any of the Super Shock eye/cheek products, I’d recommend you stick your finger into one if you can. It’s like a gel/cream/powder all in one. I picked up the Super Shock shadows in the shades: Glow (matte cream), Cornelious (matte medium warm brown), KathleenLights (metallic copper), Blaze (metallic bronze), La La (metallic pinky-copper),  and Cheap Date (metallic gold). I took me a little while to figure out how to use these – but I think I’ve sort of figured it out. Fingers are definitely best. There’s no getting around that – dipping a brush into the pots doesn’t really pick up much product. I’ve tried with several brushes and the colour payoff is pretty pathetic. What I’ve been doing is dipping my finger into the colour, placing it roughly where I want it, and then using my blending brush to soften the edges. The easiest look for me is to use Glow all over the lid and then stick a bit of Cornelious into the crease. But La La and KathleenLights are beautiful all over the lid as well. Cheap Date came shattered, but it still works, so I haven’t really had any complaints there – only that the colour itself is extremely metallic and more difficult to wear.

Another product I picked up is the Super Shock Cheek bronzer in the shade Paradise Cove, which I can’t seem to find on the website anymore (discontinued?). Either way, it’s a lovely mid-toned brown with very tiny shimmer, which is new to me. I’ve never owned 1) a cream bronzer or, 2) a metallic bronzer. This will be very pretty in the summer. I use the same method – dip my fingers in the pot, paint it all around the perimeter of my face, take my brush and blend it all in.

I will say that despite my initial annoyance with the inability to stick a brush into the products, they blend out beautifully and build pigment really nicely as well. I’d like to try more of their products and especially their new pressed powder shadows eventually.

The Creme Gel Liners from ColourPop have received a lot of good press as well, so I couldn’t resist trying a couple, despite the consistent inability for me to wear pencil-type eyeliners. I picked up two shades – Over Board (shimmery bronze) and Dirty Talk (shimmery gold). Both are too light for me to really use on my upper lash line, and they tend to dissolve in my waterline (as all liners seem to..). The one thing I’ve really been enjoying doing is to smudge a bit of Over Board into the outer half of my lower lash line just below my waterline, and then Dirty Talk in the inner half. They blend really well together and last all day like that with no smudging.

All in all I am really enjoying (and still experimenting with) ColourPop products and I can see how people get addicted to collecting them! What ColourPop products have you tried and what would you recommend?