Tuesday, September 29, 2015

September 2015 Favourites

makeup and haircare products

This year is seriously flying by! I can't believe there's only 3 more months left of 2015 and there's less than 100 days until Christmas! Crazy.

This past month, I wasn't too inspired makeup-wise since all I could really think about was the look I did on the bridesmaids for my maid of honour's wedding. What surprised me was how much I relied on the haircare products I'll be sharing about today.

I like switching up my shampoo every couple of months, or rotating shampoos after I've finished a bottle. I tried out a new one this month, the Live Clean Healthy Balance Shampoo. I really didn't know what to think of it, since I usually stay away from the clear gel-like shampoos and opt for the creamy ones. This shampoo, despite its somewhat odd scent, has been pretty awesome. I wash my hair every other day and use dry shampoo on the second day to try to soak up the oil, but my hair still ends up looking and feeling quite oily by the end of the day. With this shampoo, I can confidently leave the house with 3rd day hair.

shampoo and dry shampoo

I realized I haven't really featured any of the dry shampoos I use in my monthly favourites, so here they are! First is the Klorane Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk. I've used the Oil Absorbing Dry Shampoo before, but this one has a tint to it, so it's supposed to be better for people with dark hair. I find they both work quite similarly, and they both blend easily into the hair. Second is the Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray. I love this stuff. My hair is quite slippery and can get weighed down very easily, so this helps with putting in the grit my hair needs to hold some volume. I also use this as sort of a dry shampoo on the back of my scalp, because I still haven't mastered applying white powder in a place I can't see.

makeup products

My makeup favourites this month are pretty boring, so I won't get too into detail about them. I talked about the Bobbi Brown Corrector and the Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder in my August Favourites, so head over there to read more about them.

Since fall is officially here, I've brought out the Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Exposed - one of my go-to's for the fall season. It's the perfect shade for a natural flush on the cheeks. To keep with the fall vibes, I've been reaching for the Bobbi Brown Warm Eye Palette. For fall, I do tend to go for a smokier look and that can be achieved with the various brown shades in this palette. To complete the eyes, I've been loving the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner. I'm sure you're all sick of me talking about the Ink Liner, the felt tip version, but the Tattoo Liner has been pretty awesome. This changes my view on using brush tip liners! It has the right amount of stiffness and flexibility to make it easy to draw the lines you want. Also, how cute is this mini? I actually like how short it is! It gives so much more control for drawing lines.

Bobbi Brown Warm Eye Palette close up

Lastly, I've really liked using the Urban Decay All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray. I used it on the bridesmaids for the wedding and their makeup stayed in place all day and night, with very minimal touch-ups. I also had longer work days this past month, so this spray really helped with keeping my makeup stay in place during the busy days.

What were your favourites for September?

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Bridal Makeup: Lessons Learned

A couple of weeks ago, I had the privilege of being a makeup artist for a day and do the makeup for my maid of honour's bridesmaids, which included myself. We got up at 5:00 am for the big day and we had until 9:00 am to get ready before the groom and groomsmen arrived. It was hectic, rushed, but ultimately a beautiful and super fun day.

Today, I wanted to share some lessons I learned from doing bridal makeup!

1. Don't underestimate how much time is needed to do each person's makeup. Even though we were up at 5am, I didn't start doing the bridesmaids' makeup until approximately 6:30am. I also had to wait for each bridesmaid to get their hair done. I did end up finishing the other two bridesmaids' makeup, but rushed on my own. Try to allocate at least an hour per person. 

2. Even if you pack a lot of makeup that you think you'll use, you'll probably only end up using 1/3 of what you brought. I probably packed 5 or 6 blushes, but I ended up using just the Hourglass Ambient Blush palette on the three of us. 

3. Don't wait until the last minute to match foundation shades. Unfortunately, we couldn't find time to meet up and do the foundation match at Sephora, so we did it the night before the wedding. For one of the bridesmaids, there was barely enough foundation in the sample bottle at Sephora to do a full face. We were lucky that there was just enough, but it would've been bad if we couldn't find matches in another foundation. 

4. Relating to 1., because I was doing the makeup as a friend and not as a vendor, I was asked many questions. Questions about what product I used, why I used that product, and what that product was used for. I also had questions about how to do certain things like, how to use gel liner, how to keep pencil liner from smudging, how to do a smoky eye, and so on. With so many questions, make sure to allocate even more time per person. 

5. While doing the bridesmaids' makeup, they kept saying I should consider doing it full-time and asking whether I've thought about it. Let me tell you, I thought about it at least a couple times that morning! But at this time, makeup is just a hobby and not something I feel could do at a professional level.

6. Prepare a makeup bag for touch ups in advance of the wedding day. I thought I would have time to pack all the essentials for the day, but I was already so rushed in finishing everyone's makeup. So, I just threw whatever brushes and powders and products I thought we would need for the touchups later in the day into a big makeup bag.

7. Corrector and setting spray are essentials. Corrector is necessary after staying up late the night before and getting little sleep, and setting spray will help the makeup last a lot longer than without the spray.

8. You get such relief and such joy when you hear from the bride that she loved the looks you did on the bridesmaids. Then it makes all the stress and pressure so worth it.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

No Buy For The Rest Of 2015

Well, the title of this post says it all. I've put myself on a no-buy for the rest of the year. I've come to a point where I recognize I have too much makeup - much more makeup than I really need. The same goes with skincare products. There was even a point this past week where I looked at the promotions for holiday collections and I didn't feel any want or temptation to get anything. I had more thoughts about what items in my beauty stash I want to get rid of.

For the past couple of months, I used my maid of honour's wedding as an excuse to go out and buy more makeup, even if it was duplicates of products I already own. It was the excitement of being able to open new products and using new products, but now I have way too many of multiple products open at the same time. However, I will still save these duplicate products to use at my own wedding on my bridesmaids. 

I'm at the point where I'm more than satisfied with the amount of items and what I have in my beauty collection. But, I'd also like to pare down my collection to only the items I really like and can foresee a future in using them. I've already pulled out a few items I know I want to give away or rid from my collection.

As you might know, I'm getting married in 8 months, which means I'll be moving out in 8 months. That means I need to start thinking about what to pack and what needs to be disposed of or donated. So, hopefully a no-buy will help with curbing my hoarding tendencies and further piling up of beauty products.

Of course, during the next 3.5 months, I'll have to restock on everyday essentials. That's the only exception to this no-buy. Though, I have so much stuff stockpiled, I probably won't need to buy anything for next little while.

For anyone else that's also on a no-buy for the rest of the year, good luck! I hope this no-buy will help each of us realize what products we truly love in our collections. I don't know if I'll be posting about my decluttering or my progress in paring down my collection, but there may be an update post here and there. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


THEFACESHOP sheet masks, konjac cleansing puff, bright eye modeling gel patch

After having the opportunity to try out some of THEFACESHOP's sheet masks (review), I wanted to try out some more of THEFACESHOP's products. 

I'm a fan of the sheet masks, the fabric ones, not the hydro gel ones. So, I got 3 new ones to try out from the Real Nature Mask range - Lemon, Blueberry and Rice. I'm always on the hunt for products that help with softening, brightening and illuminating the skin. I'm hoping these one work out well for my skin. I also got the Bright Eyes Modeling Gel Patch mostly because I've always wanted to try out some eye patches and to see if these will help with brightening my dark circles.

Aside from all the masks I got, I bought a Konjac Cleansing Puff. I'm always looking for better ways of clearing my skin of the dirt and blackheads in my pores. This seems to be a trend in skincare and honestly, I really like how squishy it is. So, we'll see how well this really works!

Have you picked up anything from THEFACESHOP lately?

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Eyeshadow Palettes for Weddings

make up for ever artist palette volume 1 - nude, urban decay naked palette, bobbi brown warm eye palette

Today's the day. By the time this has been posted, I'll already have been awake for at least 2 hours and gotten my hair done for my maid of honour's wedding and have begun doing the makeup for the other bridesmaids. So, for today's post, I thought it would be fitting to show the eyeshadow palettes I've brought along with me to do the bridesmaids' makeup.

I decided on doing a soft smoky brown look. Something that was simple and classic and wouldn't be too complicated to do.

To achieve this look, you'll need a good mix of various shades of light, medium and dark browns that are both warm and cool. You'll also need some shimmery and matte shades so it doesn't look too one-dimensional. I personally don't have one palette that includes all of these shadows, so I'm using a mixture of 3 palettes.

make up for ever artist palette volume 1 - nude, urban decay naked palette, bobbi brown warm eye palette

The Urban Decay Naked Palette, Bobbi Brown Warm Eye Palette and Make Up For Ever Artist Palette Volume 1 - Nude. Both the Urban Decay and Bobbi Brown palettes contain a mixture of shimmery and matte shadows with predominantly warmer shadows. Actually, when you compare the two, they contain 3 very similar shadows - a light matte brown, medium matte brown and shimmery champagne pink. However, I find the UD shadows are a tiny bit cooler. This will be good to cater to those who have cooler or warmer skintones.

The third palette, the Make Up For Ever Artist Palette - Nude contains iridescent, satin and metallic eyeshadows, with one matte black shadow. I find that this palette leans more on the neutral to cooler side of eyeshadows, but still works well on any skintone. They're quite pigmented, so they'll have to be blended out well. An important shadow included in this palette is a matte black. It'll be useful for setting eyeliner or for further smoking out the look later in the evening. Or, if you find black is too harsh, the dark matte brown in the Bobbi Brown palette is an excellent alternative.

With all 3 of these palettes, you'll have all the necessary eyeshadows you'll need to create a simple smoky brown eye.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Preparing for a Wedding - Part 3

makeup brushes, sponges, wipes

It's now less than a week until my maid of honour's wedding and I'm super excited for her! You can also read Part 1 and Part 2 if you haven't already done so! Today, I'm continuing with part 3 of my series on preparing for a wedding. I'll be talking about some of the necessary tools and items.

Let's start off with the brushes. I definitely had some gaps in my brush collection and needed to purchase some new and extra ones. I got a couple of the Sigma E25 blending brushes because you can never have enough blending brushes! These are kind of like the MAC 217 in that it's flat but fluffy. You can pack on the colour, but also blend out eyeshadow. Just don't make the mistake of ordering from the Sigma website, like I did. I discovered Obsessed Canada after ordering my Sigma brushes and paid for the consequences due to the poor Canadian dollar.

From Real Techniques, I got a couple more of the Setting Brush and the Retractable Lip Brush. The Setting Brush is such a great multi-purpose tool. You can use it to of course, set your makeup, but also to blend out concealer, apply highlighter and for touch ups. The Retractable Lip Brush is pretty self explanatory. I didn't have any, so I thought it would be good to get one to apply lipstick or any other lip products.

Then, I purchased two eyeliner brushes from Joe Fresh. One is an angled liner brush, which also be used for the eyebrows. The other is a bent liner brush. This will be good for creating fine lines and getting into the inner corners, which can be tricky to reach.

Lastly, the miscellaneous but necessary items. A pack of makeup sponges and makeup wipes. I certainly don't have the money to shell out for a Beauty Blender to use on each person, so some cheap makeup sponges will have to do. The makeup wipes will help with some minor cleaning because I expect to be using my hands as my palette and things will get messy! 

Saturday, September 05, 2015

Preparing for a Wedding - Part 2

makeup products and bobbi brown hydrating eye cream

About 2.5 weeks ago, I posted Part 1 of this series - preparing for a wedding. I'm back today with another post detailing some additional products I've picked up in preparing to do my maid of honour's bridesmaids' makeup one week from now.

One of the products that I think is really important to have is a good eye cream. One that gives enough hydration to the undereye area but also primes the area. After finishing a sample of the Bobbi Brown Hydrating Eye Cream, I really wanted to get a full-sized pot of it but I still had a whole bunch of other eye creams to finish. But the wedding was a good reason (excuse) to get an eye cream that does it all - hydration and prime.

makeup products and bobbi brown hydrating eye cream

With doing other people's makeup, I need to be aware of keeping things sanitary and rubbing alcohol can only do so much. I picked up the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Custard and Ginger so I don't use the open concealers I've been using on myself. This concealer is just as it's named - radiant and creamy. It provides great coverage while still being moisturising. And, I picked up a new Anastasia Brow Wiz in Ebony. This is a really good shade for those with naturally black eyebrows and dark brown to black hair. My own Brow Wiz in Ebony is really dirty and I've already used up a lot of it! So, this new one will last for doing the makeup of two weddings.

Stay tuned for the next post that includes tools I've picked up in preparation for the wedding!

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

August 2015 Favourites

2015 is just flying by! The start of September signals the end of summer for me, so I'm starting to get into fall mood. Before we get to that, here are my favourites from August.

august 2015 favourite beauty products

I wasn't feeling too inspired in my makeup looks this past month, i.e. I was kind of lazy. I kept things pretty simple, but there were definitely some staples in my routine. Because of another heatwave, I was loving the Caudalie Beauty Elixir (review). I really don't need to say much about this facial mist! It's a wonderfully herbal-scented refresher and toner all in one. It really helped a lot in cooling me down during the hot days.

august 2015 favourite beauty products open

For makeup, there were 4 products that I used pretty much every single day of August. I previously mentioned in my July favourites that the Bobbi Brown Corrector in Light Peach has been such a great discovery. I'm still loving how awesome it is to use on dark circles and scars. Then, I layer on the Urban Decay Naked Concealer. I'm still loving how lightweight it is without sacrificing the amount of coverage it gives. I've used it so much that I'm almost done the tube. With these two, my scars and blemishes don't stand a chance!

After all the hard work of applying the corrector and concealer, I've been using the Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder. As I mentioned in my August makeup rotation, this powder is so good. A little bit of this goes a long way and it sets concealer very well while providing some brightening properties for the undereye area.

Lastly, I started using the Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Booster Eyeliner + Serum again. I prefer felt tip liners a lot more than brush pen liners, but this is the only brush pen liner that I feel like I have full control over. I don't find this formula is as black as I want it to be, but it can be built up.

What were your favourites for the month of August?

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