Sep 01 2014

Monday Bonus Post: Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub

 

Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub Review

 

So I have a little extra post today. Don’t usually post on Mondays but decided to sneak this little guy in. In a purchase a while back, I scored a deluxe sample of the Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub. As of late, I’d noticed some milia popping up around my upper cheek area. If you don’t know what that is, milia are those very small slightly white or yellowish bumps you can get on your face that are usually due to some sort of trauma to the skin. It’s basically keratin that becomes trapped beneath the outer layer of skin. They aren’t a pimple or spot and do not hurt. Hate these things and they are almost impossible to get rid of. Don’t exfoliate enough….you might get them. Exfoliate too much…you might get them. Anyway, even though I was using my Clarisonic a few days a week and products with Salicylic Acid which also helps to slough off that dead skin, I was feeling for some good, old fashion physical exfoliation. So I pulled this guy out of the stash (you know the one, the pile, drawer, plastic container where all your extra skincare and samples live).

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Aug 31 2014

Tips & Tricks: Hot Weather Beauty Series

 
Hot Weather Beauty
 

Some of you may know that some months back I began a Hot Weather Beauty Series, the intention being to feature products that I’ve tested in the hot, humid climate of my home. While I have every intention of continuing the series (it’s hot here year round, after all), I thought might be useful to take stock of the products I’ve reviewed so far as well as offer some of my “go-to” strategies for helping your make-up hold up. Before I begin, I want note a few things. As we headed into Summer (well not everyone, in some places in the world it is Winter), posts on “humidity” proof makeup, how to make sure your makeup doesn’t melt off etc. were quite popular. So this post might seem like it’s late to the game, sorry. Secondly, I should make clear my perspective when it comes to makeup for the hot weather. I live where it’s hot. Summer is not once a year for us, it’s always hot or at least warm. I’m not on vacation, this isn’t a holiday. Why did I just say all of that? Well because this is not going to be a post about “less is more” and only wear a BB cream or tinted moisturizer. I’m approaching this from the position of someone who likes to wear a full face of makeup (most days) and who has to do this where it’s hot. Don’t get me wrong, there are days I go without makeup and days I go lighter. And of course, I change up my colours and some of my products in the Summer, because, well, it does get even hotter. However, I work in a professional environment and I like to get done up. Also, when those Fall/Autumn or Winter months roll around and in other parts of the world most are switching to a fuller face of make-up…heck, I want to as well. But I’ve got the heat to contend with. So, yeah, I’m looking for a strong, full, base that won’t melt off. With all that being said, these are some of the ways in which I achieve this. Some of these you probably already know and are common sense, but I thought I’d share anyway.

 

1) Consider a moisturizer/sunscreen combo. Ok. I know I just said that this wouldn’t necessarily be a post about “less is more” but there is something to be said about using as few layers as possible. If you’re skin isn’t too dry, I would suggest skipping a separate moisturizer and sunscreen and looking for a product that can achieve both. I’ve reviewed some in my Summer Essential SPF series, in which I also discuss how they wear under foundation, if you want to check it out. However, if you’ve got a sunscreen that you already love, but want something extra in your morning skin routine, I would suggest switching out your moisturizer for a serum and just doing the serum plus sunscreen.

2) Use a tacky base and/or mattifying primer.  Most of us with oily skin already use some sort of mattifying primer. But the best ones are also really tacky helping everything else you place on top of it really cling. These types of products can also help those with drier skin, just make sure you put a good moisturizer on underneath. I like Murad’s Oil Control Mattifier Lotion which is extremely tacky. If you are really oily and don’t plan to be in direct sunlight, this could be your moisturizer/sunscreen and primer all in one as it has an SPF of 15. But I wouldn’t use it as my only source of sun protection because the SPF is on the lower end.

3) Make your base water-resistant. Use a water-resistant foundation or create one using other water resistant products. There are many foundations out there which claim to be water resistant and sweat proof and finding a good one will be a bit of trial and error. Given that I prefer a medium to fuller coverage, the best one that I’ve come across so far is the Clinique Stay Matte Foundation. There are others that are also good (Kat Von D, Revlon Colorstay) but nothing, for me, has compared to the Clinique.  You could sweat buckets and it will remain in tact. However, sometimes the foundation alone, no matter how good, isn’t enough. Or you may have a foundation you already love but isn’t so sweat proof. For both situations, I like to use a product that is super water resistant to support my base. So going back to  Tips 1 (and 2) – this could be a water-resistant sunscreen or some other similar product. The good ones “transfer” their water resistant qualities to the rest of your makeup. If you can find one that’s also tacky, even better. The most amazing such product that I’ve come across is the Stila Bronzing Balm.

4) Wax is your friend. Products containing wax or wax-like properties will help things stay in place. This includes everything from eye brow products to lip products. Using a waxy eye pencil or straight up eye brow wax tends to help with the moisture and humidity far more than powder alone. When I say lip products, I am thinking of primer type products like the recently reviewed Ardency Inn Lip Primer, which helps you lip product stick to your lips. Clear, waxy lip liners like the No Bleeding Lips Liner also work.

5) Use a setting spray to seal in your make-up. I am a believer in setting sprays. In my humble opinion, Kat Von D makes the best one.

6) Take your silicone with you. Some of us use silicone based primers and other similar products underneath our foundation. But did you ever think to bring it with you for touch ups? Some companies make a compact version to make it easier for you (Mally’s Skin Defender and Covergirl’s TruMagic Skin Perfector). If you find your make-up/foundation shifting on your face at some point during the day, instead of breaking out the powder, or before touching up with powder/blotting papers, dab a little bit of your silicone based primer on those areas. I find this especially helpful for the dreaded sunglass marks I get above my cheeks where the glasses pressed against my skin breaking down the foundation. A little gentle blending with the tiniest amount of silicone primer, and its like it was never there.

So I hoped this Hot Weather Beauty round-up has be somewhat helpful, even if most of it is common sense and established information, I at least wanted to share what products work for me. Have a great day everyone and stay cool! 🙂

 

 

 

Aug 29 2014

Canada – French Pharmacy Haul

 
Canada French Pharmacy Haul
 

I’m extremely excited to share with you guys some goodies that my awesome and lovely mum picked up for me on a recent trip to Canada. As she also visited several “French” pharmacies (in Quebec), I’ve dubbed this my Canada – French Pharmacy Haul.

I also want to take the time to thank Crystal of the Nerdy Librarian Girl and Sarah of Not Your Typical DollFace, two awesome Canadian beauties, for their recommendations.

Here’s what I got:

 
Canada French Pharmacy Haul
 

Bioderma Micellaire Cleansing Water – Can you believe I’ve never tried this? It was a must…even if it turns out to be a lot of hype, I had to try it for myself. And I doubt it is just hype because people I trust have recommended it. But of course, we all have different skin. Anyway, it’s not accessible in The Bahamas (as far as I know) and also difficult to get in the U.S. Although, they are sellers on the Amazon U.S. Site, as well as the Amazon Canada Site (which ships to The Bahamas and many other countries).

Quo Cotton Pads – These were recommended to me by Crystal, but I’m pretty sure the ones I got aren’t the ones she was talking about. She features them on her site as a dupe for the oh so heavenly Shisiedo Cotton but comparing her pictures to my package, I think my mum got the wrong ones. No matter. I’m still super excited to try them!

Yves Rocher Body Wash in Grapefruit – I remember using this brand all of the time when I was studying in France. I’ve already used the one featured here and can report back that the grapefruit smell is really refreshing and authentic. Great for those challenging mornings.  🙂

La Roche Posay Effaclar H – It was the Effaclar Duo that I was after because my skin has recently gone mad and I use to use the Duo regularly to help restore my skin back to “normal” when it was breaking out. You can get the Effaclar Duo in the U.S. but the ingredients are different from the European version (which I believe is the version sold in Canada). Basically, the U.S. version has benzoyl peroxide and the European one does not (there are also other differences in the ingredients). Anyway, the item I ended up with, the Effaclar H, is basically a moisturizer geared toward acne prone skin that is suffering from irritation due to the use of harsh acne fighting products. I’m almost even more excited that my mum picked this up instead of the a Duo because I’ve never tried it! 🙂 Again, I’ve never seen La Roche Posay in The Bahamas, but there are sellers on Amazon (U.S., Canada, and U.K.)

 
Canada French Pharmacy Haul
 

Lise Watier Eyeshadow Quad Les Bleus – Of course, a Canadian beauty haul wouldn’t be complete without some goodies from Lise Watier. I’m not going to say too much about this quad because I have a review and swatches along with eye looks coming up next week!

Lise Watier Bio Lift Eye Patches – This was not on my list but a lovely, lovely surprise. Super excited to review these and let you guys know what I think!

Crabtree and Eveyln Lip Butter Pomegranate & Grapeseed Oil and Lavender Hand Cream – This is not a Canadian or French brand but I included these items as part of the haul because she purchased them along with everything else while in Canada. Another surprise! I can already tell you that I love that Lavender hand cream! Haven’t tried the lip butter yet.

 

Canada French Pharmacy Haul

 

Yves Rocher Corrector/Concealer –  Yet another unexpected item. Mum, if you’re reading this, you’re the best! (And yes, I’m a grown woman, lol) 🙂 I’ve never tried Yves Rocher makeup and who doesn’t love concealer?

Annabelle Lip Liners – I’ve heard good things about these inexpensive lip liners and although I’m not usually a lip liner girl,  had to give them a try. Also, I’ve got to give it to my mum (who is not into makeup beyond some powder and lip balm) for picking out two great options, what appears to be a lovely rosy-pink neutral and a darker colour for Fall/Autumn! I hadn’t specified colours, just the brand. Will let you know my thoughts.

O.K. guys so that’s my Canada – French Pharmacy Haul. I hope you guys enjoyed and if any of your will be visiting Canada in the near future and looking to pick up some beauty goodies, maybe it will be useful. I’ll be reviewing several of the items hauled on this blog in the coming weeks.  If you have any other Canadian/French beauty recommendations let me know!

 

 

 

 

All products featured were purchased by the author or gifted to the author (in this case by the author’s lovely mother). All opinion’s are the author’s. Some affiliate links. For more information see Disclaimer here.

 

 

 

 

Aug 27 2014

Birthday Beauty Wishlist (2014)

 

This post may make me come across as somewhat bratty, but my b-day is coming around sometime in the not so distant future and I’ve been lusting after a few high end items for several months now (or longer). So, I decided it might be fun to share my Birthday Beauty Wishlist with you guys. I’m not gonna lie, what really motivated me to write this post was creating my first Polyvore Set? Board? List? Whatever you call it. I just joined the site a few days ago and there’s not much on there, but if you want to check out my account my profile name is Kimmy Beauty Isles. I suppose it’s a lot like Pinterest, though I’ve never used that either, except you can shop on Polyvore. Not through a third party like you would with Luvocracy but directly from whatever company’s site the image comes from. I’m pretty sure that’s how it works, but don’t quote me. Incidentally, I also have Luvocracy account but honestly haven’t done much with it since initially signing up. Don’t know how I feel about it yet. If you guys have Polyvore or Luvocracy profiles, be sure to share so I can check you out! Anyway, tangent, back to the wishlist…

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Aug 26 2014

Brand Spotlight: Ardency Inn Reviews & Smoky Eye Look

 

Ardency Inn Makeup Review

 

In today’s Brand Spotlight we have some Ardency Inn Reviews. Ardency Inn is a brand I’d not heard of until very recently. Their products first came to my attention a few months ago while browsing the Sephora website. I’ve since done some further research and discovered that the brand has been featured by some bloggers (though not many), including Phyrra of Beauty for the Bold. The “punk” rocker vibe of their products is not one I’d be normally drawn to, but I was feeling adventurous. On their website, Ardency Inn describes their brand as follows:

Ardency Inn is a makeup brand deeply rooted in the downtown New York music scene.

Aiming to put the power of makeup artistry in the hands of not only recording artists but also every woman, the brand creates high performance color cosmetics that are quick and easy to use, allowing creativity to run free. 

With imagery that captures the edge and free spirit of downtown New York, Ardency Inn represents a true lifestyle that will resonate with music and makeup fans everywhere.

Sounds pretty funky, huh? Anyway, I wanted to test out a range of products and so I went with two kits containing full size products, getting the most bang for my buck. The Punker Smoky Eye Kit which retails for $39.00 USD contains: the Punker Unrivaled Volume & Curl Lash Wax, the Punker Original Smoky Shadow in Black Smoke and the Punker World’s Baddest Eyeliner in Deep Black (separately they would have cost me $62.00 USD). The Southhampton Lip Kit which retails for $32.00 USD contains: the MODSTER Lip Balm & Primer and the MODSTER Long Play Supercharged Lip Color in Forward (separately they would have cost me $48.00 USD). Both of these kits are apparently limited edition and according to Sephora’s website the lip kit is a Sephora online exclusive. Also, I believe the brand is found exclusively at Sephora’s in the U.S. and Canada.  Onto the review….

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