May 26, 2015

May 2015 Topbox

 

May 2015 Topbox
May 2015 Topbox
My Topbox came in last week. There were quite a few great selections to choose from for May: Aveda, NeoStrata, Elizabeth Arden, Indigenia, So Susan, a Canadian fragrance box and a Mystery box. Lots of choices but I decided to roll the dice and see what goodies I got in the regular box.

If you want to see what was in the NeoStrat Topbox, check out my April Topbox here.

Le Contents:   

May 2015 Topbox

THEFACESHOP Herb Day (365) Cleansing Foam Aloe    deluxe sample
Full Size: 170ml/$6
This cleanser will leave your skin supple and soft to the touch. Its formula is enriched with aloe and its soft foaming texture soothes irritated skin and provides the epidermis with intense hydration.
This sounds like it would be a great face wash for after those hot summer days where you might have spent a wee too much time in the sun for your own good. I did that this past weekend. I got an unintentional sun tan on my face cleaning my yard. Sun is freckle food.

THEFACESHOP Seaweeds Moisturizing Pack    deluxe sample
Full Size: 110ml/$12
Moisture pack to moisturize and soothe dry and tired skin. Non sticky, provides moisture for vital glowing skin. Before going to bed, spread evenly over your face, avoiding the eye and lip contour areas.
So this is an all nighter mask. I can’t wait to try this one out. The scent is kinda herbally. It reminds me of the Intelligence face line from Arbonne, which I really liked.  I was disapointed when they discontinuted that line.

May 2015 Topbox

Essie Polish in Flowerista -   deluxe sample
Full Size: ml/$8
I adore this teeny little bottle and I love the colour. I plan on using this polish for my mani next week. I will post a photo on Instagram when I does up my mani. 

May 2015 Topbox

Medusa’s Makeup Eyeshadow in Safari Black Gold    full size
Full Size: 2g/$8
Highly pigmented mineral pressed powder with micro sparkles. For best results, apply “Stick It” primer then apply with a brush.
At first I thought this was a forest green shadow but it is a charcoal black with gold and green sparkles in it. Not one of my favorite colours but I am sure I will find a use for it. I did go peruse the Medusa’s Makeup website (lots of products) and they have some pretty nice bright neon (Electro) colours offered. They also have the Safari eyeshadow line and the one shadow that really popped out at me was Liger. Medusa’s Makeup also has an interesting read on the History of Makeup. Check it out.

I think thise was well rounded Topbox. It included skincare, makeup, nails. Everything I want in a box. Was it my favorite? No it didn't knock my socks off but it is a good one and I will be using up these products.

If you are interested in getting your own Topbox, go to Topbox.ca and sign up. It is $12 + tax Canada only.




May 20, 2015

A Little Redemption

Every month or so, Shoppers Drug Mart has an Optimum Point Redemption promo where you can redeem your points (for free stuff) and get extra money off. This long weekend was one of those redemption events.

For instance, 50,000 Optimum points normally equals $85 but during a redemption promo weekend, you can get an extra $15 for those 50,000 points, making it a $100 of free stuff. 95,000 points will get you $200.

You collect Optimum points by shopping at Shoppers Drug Mart and Murale.ca. you get 10 points for every dollar spent plus there are opportunities to get bonus Optimum points on items during the week.

For the past few redemption events, I have been just getting basics with my points; groceries, laundry soap, cleaning supplies, tissue/TP, vitamins etc. This time I spent the majority of the points on me and not on household items or other unfun stuff. Okay I got some toilet paper and pop but it was on sale and couldn’t resist.


a little SDM redemption
a little SDM redemption
 
The first item I had to get was a curling iron. About a month or so ago, I broke my 1” barrel curling iron. I had it for over a decade. It was old but it still worked great. I was in the bathroom and I knocked it off the vanity.  The way it hit the ground was epic. It blew apart into a million pieces. The end tip came off, something flew out of the barrel, screws shooting off behind the toilet, the stand and clamp went flying. I was so sad after that; a) because it was something I used every other day and was so used to it and b) this meant I had to spend money on a new one L.  I tried using my 1 ½” and ½” irons but they either didn’t curl my hair that great (too big) or it took too long (too small). So getting a free curling iron is awesome. I like how this Conair Infiniti Premiere has a notch on the end so you can hang it on a hook when you want to put it away. I also prefer irons with the clamp. With my disability, it is difficult for me to use my right shoulder to turn my hair around the clampless irons. My arms get too sore or my shoulder seizes up. I was trying this method with my 1 ½” iron.  I like to just clamp it on and roll away. Maybe I should invest in an iron that also self rotates as well? Hmmmmm

I picked up some more hair dye, Garnier Nutrisse Cream. I have been using the mousse version but now I want to try out the cream.

I also got another Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer. I really love this stuff for an everyday daytime moisturizer. My only complaint is that I wish it had a higher SPF than 15. I know there are other Aveeno lotions that have a higher SPF in them but I really like the results with the Positively Radiant line. 

Maybelline Fit Me concealer | Rimmel Apocolips Lip Lacquer
Maybelline Fit Me concealer | Rimmel Apocolips Lip Lacquer
I had to restock on my favorite drug store concealer, Maybelline Fit Me Concealer in Light. I am really liking this stuff. It does a great job for a medium coverage concealer. Once I set it, the Fit Me Concealer doesn’t budge or settle too much. I will last me the whole work day.
 
My first Rimmel Apocalips Lip Lacquer. I love how thick and opaque these are and not crazy sticky. I got Nova, a bright girly pink. I now wish I would have also grabbed a peachy one too. I don't know why I waited so long to try these out.


Rimmel Apocolips Lip Lacquer in Nova
Rimmel Apocolips Lip Lacquer in Nova
If you have dry frizzy damaged hair, then you should give the Marc Anthony Hydrating Coconut Oil Shea Butter Condition Treatment a try. I have used it before and got 3-4 treatments out of it. My hair soaks it up. It smells so good, really really hydrates the hair, rinses out quite well and leaves your hair so soft and manageable. For $2.99 say Yes Please.

I also got some basic beauty items that I didn’t photograph because I put them away already or opened up - Quo nail polish remover, Quo cotton pads, some pointy ear buds/q-tips for makeup and nail fixes.

I was really debating getting the L’oreal La Palette 2 vs the curling iron. But in the end, I figured I had enough eyeshadow for the moment. Plus the price of the La Palette at Shoppers Drug Mart put me off…$29.99! What the fudge? Anyhow necessity won out over want. Forever practical.  ~~le sigh~~

So did you splurge and drop all your points for some fun stuff at Shoppers Drug Mart?

 

May 06, 2015

Aprils Favs

April Favs
April Favs
I am really sporadic blogging about my monthly favorites. That’s because I don't think my favs change too much from month to month. When I find something that works I tend to stick with it. I be loyal like that.

But this past month, I noticed I was reaching for some different items. Some of which are really good old friends. 
 
Marcelle CC and DD Cream
Marcelle CC and DD Cream
First fav up is my base; I have been switching back and forth between the Marcelle CC and DD creams. I like them both but slightly prefer the DD cream a bit more. Both offer light coverage but I think the CC cream has a bit more coverage and that the DD cream has more luminosity. If I want more than a light coverage, I may pump in a teeny little bit of foundation, making a little foundation concoction.  I highly recommend trying out the Marcelle CC/DD creams for a beautiful au natural finish. Plus they have some great skin benefits and a decent SPF count. I have reviewed the DD cream here if you are interested.

April Favs

I have rediscovered my fondness for the L'Oreal True Match Super Blendable Powder in N2 for setting my face. I never thought anything would pry the MAC Mineralized Skin Finish Medium from my hands but this one did. It is so smooth and the super fine powder never cakes on my face.

I also really enjoyed using the Maybelline Fit Me concealer in Light. So much so that the labeling has rubbed off. This creamy concealer blends beautifully and covers any under eye darkness I may have that day. It’s an awesome drugstore concealer.

Now that it is spring I have been reaching for pink blushes. None more so than my Clinique Cheek Pop blush in Plum Pop. It provides a beautiful soft pink glow. The only thing I don't like about this pretty blush is the more you get down in to the embossed daisy design, the very edges of the petals get dirty. I tried wiping it with a makeup cleaning wipe but I think I made it worse. So now I give it a spritz with my BeautySoClean spray every once in awhile to appease my mind. If you want to see it in its original glory you can read my review here. Has anyone else had this issue with the Cheek Pops?

Okay this one I am a wee bit embarrassed to show you. It's my Benefit Hoola Bronzer. I was going to insert a stock photo of it here but I thought I would just be honest and show you what makeup that I really love ends up looking like after a year or so LOL It gets loved to Death! Please, don’t judge me…
I got this small version awhile ago and I only hit pan on it a few months ago. I use it to contour a bit, bronze my face and I love it as an eyeshadow. It makes for a great warm brown crease colour. I need to get another one soon. I am quite impressed with how long it this little guy has lasted me with the amount of use it has gone through.  Poor Hoola.

I am including the Benefit Roller Lash mascara even though it is empty. I enjoyed this so much that I used it everyday until that sad day there was no more. Teresa wants more! I did review it here last month.

Annabelle Lip Liner in Demure Epic Blend Lip Balm
Annabelle Lip Liner in Demure Epic Blend Lip Balm
Every morning, I fill in my lips with the Annabelle lip liner in Demure. I drink a lot of coffee each morning and the Annabelle lip liners seem to last through my coffee indulgences a lot better than glosses or lipsticks. Demure is a beautiful nude-y pink, a my-lips- but-better shade. The Epic Blend Lip Balm is really moisturizing and has become my favorite balm to use of late. Plus you gotta love that it is a Canadian company and an all natural product. I only wish I could find it locally. You can order Epic Blend online.
 
belvada

I thought I would mention these Belvada nail polish remover pads. I finally started using them after receiving them last year in a TopBox. Initially, I didn’t like the lemon scent but I have to say I really like these nail polish remover pads. I can get all 10 digits done with one pad, two if it’s a really stubborn polish. But my favorite thing is how moisturizing these are and that I can sit in front of TV and absent-mindedly take off my polish. That's the lazy girl in me loving this product :)

That’s the nitty gritty of my current favs…some loved (really hard) more than others…
What is your favorite product right now?

April 28, 2015

Maybelline Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth Foundation #review

 
Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth Foundation
Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth Foundation
I am a huge fan of the Maybelline Fit Me concealer and I am always on the lookout for a long lasting luminous foundation. So when I saw the Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth on sale at Shoppers Drug Mart for $7.99, I scooped it up. With the name Hydrate + Smooth, you would think this was made for people with dry skin maybe hide my giant pores, right? Not so much.

Maybelline recently renamed this foundation the Fit Me Dewy + Smooth in the US. It is the same formulation as the Hydrate + Smooth (which is the actually the original Fit Me foundation just repackaged). O_o . For the purpose of this review, I am going to call it the Hydrate + Smooth since that is what my bottle says. Confusing, right? 

Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth Foundation

The Hydrate + Smooth is meant for normal to dry skin. Maybelline states this will give you a dewy and seamless finish. The Fit Me foundations are priced in the $8 to $12 range here in Canada and come in 14 shades. I picked out the shade 120 – Creamy Ivory.  The consistency of the Hydrate + Smooth is very fluid which made blending it out a dream. The glass bottle has a sleek square shape. Simple but sleek. It doesn’t come with pump though - boo.   
 
Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth Foundation

Initially, it went on smooth, spread evenly, had medium coverage and felt lightweight plus it was a great colour match. I was excited! I thought I found a new drugstore foundation. But….about 20 minutes after I set the foundation with a powder, the foundation settled in my pores. Like really settled. It exaggerated my fines lines and made my pores seem even bigger than they were. I even tried using the Hydrate + Smooth over different primers, on its own, with different setting powders, still no bueno. Every single time, it would settle and make my skin look worse than when I had no foundation on. Not good at all. The foundation also had no luminosity to it and it broke down around the 5 hr mark for me. There was nothing left to fix.
 
Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth Foundation

I have always had large pores and have always found primer to be a great fix for this issue. But for me, even primer was no help with this foundation.

Sadly, I have to give the Fit Me Hydrate +Smooth a big thumbs down. If you have dry or dehydrated skin, I don’t think this is the foundation for you.

The Fit Me range also has a new foundation formula called the Matte + Poreless. I didn’t get this one initially because I thought it would be drying from the name, Matte + Poreless. But I have heard that this formulation does work well for dry dehydrated skin. I think I just might try that one out.

What did you think of the Fit Me Hydrate + Smooth, aka Dewy + Smooth aka the original formula? Did you have a similar experience? Should I give the Matte + Poreless a try or am I sucker for punishment?   





April 21, 2015

April 2015 Topbox | NeoStrata

It’s Topbox time! Once again I opted for a prive box (preselected brand specific box). There was a pretty good selection for prive boxes for April; NeoStrata, Bioderma and I think Philosophy was still an option. But as soon as I saw the NeoStrata box, I immediately clicked on it. Dun and dun! For some reason I am all about skin care right now. Well there is a reason. I want to freshen up my complexion and when I saw the glycolic peel and lotion my mind was made up! NeoStrata can be pricey here in Canada so this sampling is a perfect way to test out the products. Plus I have been using the NeoStrata 5% glycolic toner for the past few months and I love it.

April 2015 Topbox
April 2015 Topbox | NeoStrata
NeoStrata Skin Renewal products are ideal for all skin types, uneven dull skin and all ages. NeoStrata does state on their website that it is recommended to build skin tolerance slowly when using products containing glycolic acid. If you experience skin sensitivity, suspend its use for a few days and resume gradually. 

April 2015 Topbox

Skin Renewal Peel Solution  20ml
Full Size: 50ml/$75
Ideal quick fix for uneven and dull skin. The glycolic acid will help eliminate the dead cells responsible for the rough skin. This solution contains 10% glycolic acid and 10% gluconolactone, the highest potency available of AHA to achieve results after only 1 treatment.
I am little scared of this one but can't wait to try it. I hope it is not too strong for me.  

April 2015 Topbox

Moisture Intense Hydrating Cream  20ml
Full Size: 50ml/$30
Ideal for replenishing skin's moisture. The skin is softer, more comfortable and supple.
I think this Hydrating Cream is a great addition to the box. I am really going to need it after the Peel Solution. 

April 2015 Topbox

Glycolic Renewal™ Smoothing Cream 5% Glycolic Acid  15ml
Full Size: 50ml/$39
Moisturizes skin, while exfoliating dead cells on skin’s surface, and maximizing skin renewal. This daily moisturizer helps reveal a smoother, more radiant, and visibly younger skin.
YASSSS! I was eyeing this up at Shoppers Drug Mart but since we received a coupon card for London Drugs, I may have to go there for it.

Bonus Item:
Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration sunscreen Lotion SPF30
Everyone received a 59ml sample of this in their Topbox this month. Hawaiian Tropic was my poolside sunscreen last summer. I like that it waterproof and affordable. It is a staple in my pool bag. This one is going in my purse.

I am so feeling this Topbox! I want new skin (well nicer skin) and I hope this delivers. Plus the sample sizes are really decent. Fantastic. Love it! Let’s just hope I don’t have any peeling mishaps. HA!

What were your thoughts on the NeoStrata TopBox?
 
Topbox is a monthly Canadian beauty subscription. For $12 + pst ($13.60), you can have 4 beauty samples sent to each month. Sign up at Topbox.ca


April 14, 2015

Coral Paradis

Coral Paradis Nails
Coral Paradis
I am hitting you with some more springtime prettiness.  My good friend, Kim, snuck this in on her recent Lise Watier order and surprised me with it! Coral Paradis by Lise Watier. I made the comment that this polish would look amazing for summer and she surprised me with it! Love you Kim!  

Coral Paradis Nails


Coral Paradis Nails

For kicks, I did some inverted coral and white polka dots on the middle nails. For the white, I used my old standby OPI’s Alpine Snow. I love the orange-y goodness of Coral Paradis but I did find it streaky. Wah! Streaks or not, this colour is going to look fabulous on the toes this summer, for sure!  

Coral Paradis Lise Watier

Isn’t the light on this the cutest? I totally forgot to use it when I was painting my nail. Duh!
What is your favorite nail colour for spring?

April 08, 2015

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water #review

 
Simple Micellar Cleansing Water
Simple Micellar Cleansing Water
I have been eager to try a drugstore micellar water for awhile now. I tried a sample of the Bioderma Sensibo last year and loved it. But I went through it so fast that I was deterred from buying a full sized version. So when I saw an affordable drugstore option, my curiosity got the better of me.
I came across the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water last month at Shoppers Drug Mart, it was so new in-store that the price wasn’t even on the shelf yet. I was so jazzed when the price check came up as on sale for $5.99/198 ml. I snapped it up right away.  
 
Simple Micellar Cleansing Water

I have been curious to see if it can remove my makeup as well as my two current favorite methods; Neutrogena Makeup Remover towelettes ($8.99/25) and the La Posey Roche Rosaliac Micellar Gel ($24.99/200ml).

Keep in mind, you will need cotton pads when using a micellar cleansing product. The cotton pad, once moistened with the micellar water, will act like a magnet to remove the gunk on our faces. 

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water

I have been using the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water every night for the past 3 weeks to remove my makeup and here are my thoughts;

The Simple Micellar Cleansing Water is gentle on my sensitive skin and it does leaves my skin feeling a bit hydrated. It takes about two cotton pads soaked (on both sides) with the micellar water to get the majority of my makeup off. Even though my face looked clean, I could still find some residue on my face afterwards. I found that the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water didn’t quite take off a full face of makeup well enough for me to walk away without rinsing off or washing my face. Plus this did not remove my mascara very well at all. I still need an eye makeup remover for that.

So why am I still using it? While the thought of one product being able to remove makeup and cleanse your face without rinsing sounds appealing, I do not expect my makeup wipes or micellar products to be a replacement for a good ole’ face washing. I guess I am hard wired to use soap and water to keep my face clean. My expectations for micellar products are to get the facial cleansing process started. To start the breakdown and removal of the makeup on my face so the actual cleanser can work better. Simply put, the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water works great as a basic non-irritating makeup remover.

For me, the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water did a better job at removing my makeup than the Neutrogena Cleaning towelettes. Cost effectiveness, it is also the better choice. Travel wise, not so much. I would be worried about the snap top bottle leaking when travelling.

The Simple Micellar Cleansing Water is actually great for small clean ups when you have a goof up when applying makeup. Put a little on a q-tip and wipe away. Hello Goodbye Panda Eyes!

I also found it great to use as a morning cleanser. I use it to remove the residue of my night cream and any eye goop leftover from the night before. I do rinse my face with water but that’s more to wake myself up than anything else.
 
Simple Micellar Cleansing Water

Have you tried the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water yet? Have you found a drugstore brand that works for you?