Friday, April 26, 2013

REVIEW: Revlon ColorBurst Lipstick in "Rosy Nude"

oh hello there :) 
i got a quick lippie post for you today. 

while i was on the search for some nude colors that will actually look good on me rather than make me look deathly ill, i picked up my second Revlon ColorBurst Lipstick (3.7 g)
"065 Rosy Nude" was recommended by some darker-skinned vloggers. i am actually pretty light-skinned but since the other nudes that people were recommending were just not working out, i figured that it was time i try a warmer shade of nude.
Revlon remains one of my favorite drugstore lipstick brands. look how pretty the packaging is with the sleek quilt pattern on the side and the colored top.
Revlon does not disappoint with the pigmentation or formula either. the ColorBurst line features lipsticks that are rich in color, lightweight and moisturizing at the same time.
"Rosy Nude" comes off a bit too red-brown for my taste - sort of like a rusty brown color. even though it is darker than i would've preferred, i actually like keeping this in my coat pocket for convenience. ColorBurst lipsticks are so easy to apply that i can use throw it on as i am walking to work. i use it like i use lip balm and the color payoff is a great bonus.
since it is so light on the lips, it does disappear rather quickly and i'd feel it wear off within the hour.

again, i love the lipstick itself but it seems that i am not having any luck with the colors i am choosing.
Revlon Colorburst lipsticks can be found at any drugstore for approximately $5.99.
check out my review and swatch of this lipstick in the shade "075 Peach" here.

quick note about a very generous offer from nailpolishcanada.com:
they are offering those of you that were subscribed to Glymm in the last four months and who had to endure the horrible drama that ensued, a box of nail goodies worth $25 for FREE. this Anti-Glymm Box Box even allows you to pick a nail color, given 3 options :). all you have to do is email them (click on the link for info) with proof of your Glymm membership and they will email you back a code. if you decide to spend at least $25 on other things on the website, shipping is free but if you want just the box, it will cost you $3.
there is a crazzzzyyyy Deborah Lippmann sale right now. need i say more?

Monday, April 22, 2013

TOPBOX: April 2013 [regular]

EEP!!!
it's been a week since my last post. i am sorry that i've been so busy! this weekend alone was filled with 2 birthdays and a funeral.
it may not have been as crazy as 4 weddings and a funeral but... i haven't seen the movie so who knows. (i hope this slightly comedic remark does not come off as insensitive!)

anyway,
quick post about the Topbox. yes i know, it came weeks ago. but i feel obligated (to myself?) to post this anyway! so here goes --

- - - - -

i interrupt this Topbox unboxing post to bring you an important message about Glymm:
what. the. eff.

i haven't been checking blogs and emails as often as i'd like last week but was able to find the news about Glymm shutting down operations from a Facebook group. sifting through my emails, i finally found the message from Glymm in my junk folder. Glymm's emails have always gone to my inbox before but this particular message of course, goes into junk.

i knew they were struggling the last few weeks since we did not receive our March bags. i believe that Glymm was saying that they were restructuring or something along those lines when they were bombarded with questions on their Facebook page.
well great. thanks for the heads up. all those Glymm points saved up for nothing. i could've, should've used them ages ago!! what was i thinking!!

the Glymm website, Facebook account, Twitter accounts, etc etc have all vanished. i'm hoping i can dispute some charges on my credit card bill... oh, the hassle. i am glad to finally wash my hands on this thing though. one less beauty box to be disappointed by.

- - - - -

back to Topbox!
like last year, they shipped all April boxes in the eco-friendly packaging in support of Earth Day (today!).

1) boxx cosmeticss Travel Foundation Brush - suh-weet! i was thinking of buying another foundation brush and this one is very neat! i like that the handle is travel-sized for convenience while the brush head is standard-sized so that it does not infringe on the brush's usability. 
the hairs are unlike any other brush i own - there is a mixture of goat and 3 toned synthetic fibers. it is very soft and thin as well. 
size: 1 brush - 25 g (full size!)
retail value: $28

2) Elizabeth Arden All Gone Eye and Lip Makeup Remover - i've always wondered if you could use regular makeup remover on your lips but since this one specifically says so, i do not have to question it anymore! remember to shake well before use and rinse afterwards. i am not a fan of oily makeup removers but they are better at removing resistant makeup.
*shake shake shake*
size: 50 mL
retail value: $24 (100 mL)

3) KMS California FREESHAPE Quick Blow Dry - i've received this previously from LB and i'm still working on it. i think it does a decent job but nothing so convincing that i need to use it every time i blow dry.
 *also shake shake shake*
size: 30 mL
retail value: $18.75 (200 mL)

4) Michael Todd Jojoba Charcoal Facial Scrub - i had a d'oh moment with this. for some reason, i thought this was a mask. so i applied it on my face like you would a mask - thickly, while i was thinking to myself: "why is this mask so runny? now i have to apply even more!" and then my sister asks me how long we are supposed to leave it on for.

oops!
the scrub doesn't feel super gritty so i felt that it would be fine for sensitive skin. my sister said it stung a bit on her more acne-prone skin. i could barely smell the scrub which is a great thing since charcoal products usually have an unpleasant smell to them. 
left my skin feeling nice and soft. felt the need to moisturize after.
size: 30 mL
retail value: $18 (100 mL)

this Topbox was a decent one... the product that won be over is the boxx cosmetics brush for sure. the rest is just okay since i've received the KMS hair product before and i am constantly overwhelmed with makeup removers. what type of brush did you get?
there isalso a limited edition Mother's Day Topbox available where you can get vial samples of 6 fragrances and redeem the gift card for a full size. the cost of the box is $80. nice idea but not something i need. i've seen something similar at Sephora and Shoppers before.

Monday, April 15, 2013

BEAUTY BOX 5: March 2013

my BB5 arrived shortly after my Luxe Box. this month was just okay - i guess i was a little spoiled from their previous anniversary box!
1) La Fresh Nail Polish Remover Travel Wipes - i am being overwhelmed by wipes from beauty box subs, especially La Fresh ones! i can't remember if i have received these already... 
did a quick search on my blog and i have received something similar - back in June, i received an acetone-free version from Glymm.
size: 1 pad x 2
retail value: $3.99 (6 wipes)

-- update April 22, 2013 -- 
i used one of these pads after wearing Hard Candy's "Crush on Pink" polish for a few days. the pad easily removed the pink layer but not so much as the silver foil underneath the pink. i was able to remove 3 fingers easily before the La Fresh pad started drying out. i had to use some of my own nail polish remover to remove the rest of the polish off my fingers. 
i don't think these Travel Wipes are intended to be used on shimmery or glittery polishes. the pad itself was heavy duty enough (resembled felt) but dried up too quickly. --

2) Brazen Cosmetics Organic Mineral Eye Shadow in "Buzzed" - at first look, i didn't think too much of the color - yeah it's brown and it's sparkly. the swatch was of only one swipe and it was still just okay for me.
but once i started playing with it on my eyes, i am in love! i built up the color a bit on my crease and it is really long-wearing. i was surprised that it was just as vivid after i woke up from a very restful afternoon nap :)
Brazen Cosmetics (catch line: bold & provocative organic makeup) is currently making changes to their website so i can't find much about their shipping costs or products yet. ** spoiler alert ** the company will also be featured in April's box **
size: 3 g
retail value: $7.49 (5 g)

3) Tree Hut Shea Body Butter in "Tropical Mango" - i cannot get enough of Tree Hut! last month, i received a delicious-smelling Coconut Lime Body Scrub and last year, i got a i-want-to-eat-it Hawaiian Kukui Body Butter. "Tropical Mango" is also saliva-inducing but if i had to choose a body butter, i prefer the "Hawaiian Kukui".
size: 57 g
retail value: $6.49 (255 g)

4) H2O Plus Spa Sea Salt Body Wash - also received a H2O Plus product (shampoo) last month. i must say that i do not like this body wash. the scent is very strong, very marine-y, very salty... does not make me feel pretty.
H2O Plus is all about 3 key elements so here they are: red marine algae, Japanese green tea extract and provitamin B.
size: 30 mL
retail value: $17 (370 mL)

5) H2O Plus AquaFirm+ Eye Lift Concentrate - the tube may be little but keep in mind that it is about half-full. this is a very interesting eye cream - the cream itself has an iridescent color to it - very pretty. i guess it contributes to the light-reflecting brighteners in the product.
the 3 key elements for this include: caffeine, sea nutrient barrier and chlorella marine algae.
size: 4 mL
retail value: $38 (15 mL)

so i like about half of this box and the other half, not so much. i noticed that there was no organza bag this time around... all the items were just tossed into a cardboard box with some black crinkly paper and that was it. i guess i don't need more organza bags but i am curious if this is how they will be packaging their products from now on.

i'd like to thank the reader who signed up via my link last month. it was a surprise when i got an email from BB5 saying that my referral earned me, not $5, but a $10 gift card to Sephora. so thank you again! has any of you Canadian ladies figured out how to use this though? the tiny writing at the bottom seems to indicate that it can only be redeemed in the states... let me know if you have any idea!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

LUXE BOX: March 2013 [Spring Edition]

my spring Luxe Box arrived last week which was a surprise since i almost forgot it was coming.
this spring box was special in that it was partnered with Steven and Chris from CBC's Steven and Chris Show. i haven't seen the show before but i have heard of the duo.
a Spring Trends 2013 booklet was included and you don't receive every item listed. to me, this seems like a bit of a tease since i can read about items other people are getting. i don't think it is a smart business tactic because we are only comparing our items to what we COULD have received which means unhappy customers.
of the 10 products mentioned in the booklet, i received 3 of them in my box. i am quite jealous of those who got the Color Smash Hair Shadow! i've only dyed my hair once so it seems like a fun thing to try.

1) Loose Button Blending Sponge 
"A makeup sponge applicator that flawlessly blends in your makeup for the perfect look. The applicator should be dampened with water before use and can be used with liquid, cream, loose powder or pressed powder makeup. For best results, use the applicator in a stippling or bouncing motion."
i am sure you have seen the (seemingly) overpriced Beautyblender as well as many of its knockoffs. here we have Loose Button's version - a blue sponge that is not an exact egg shape like the real Beautyblender but it's more like an egg with a waist. it is really soft and squishy! definitely felt different from my other makeup tools... it was pretty fun using it to apply my foundation just by bouncing it all over my face.
i haven't used one of these before so i had to look it up. i dampened the sponge and used it to apply both a liquid foundation and powder by using bouncing motions. i think the sponge may have been too wet because i couldn't tell if it either spread evenly or the sponge soaked it all up. i will have to use it a few more times before i get it right...
size: 1 sponge (full size!)
retail value: N/A

2) Lancome Genefique Youth Activating Serum 
"Award-winning serum that helps create a more youthful-looking skin by promoting natural skin renewal that is characteristic of young skin. Visible skin in just 7 days. Drop by drop, skin is vibrant with youth, its tone becomes astonishingly even and its texture dramatically refined."
oooh. award-winning but not a product i am interested in using just yet.
comes with a dropper and has a very very light scent.
size: 8 mL
retail value: $125 (50 mL)

3) Blue Lagoon Rich Nourishing Cream
"Blue Lagoon rich nourishing cream We are happy to include our latest product, rich nourishing cream, in the spring Luxe Box. The Blue Lagoon rich nourishing cream, for normal to dry skin, smoothes, enhances radiance and helps to prevent signs of aging, like wrinkles. This new advanced formula contains Blue Lagoon active ingredients: algae and silica. Research has shown that Blue Lagoon algae have significant protecting and anti-aging effects and the Blue Lagoon silica helps to strengthen the skins barrier function* *in vitro and in vivo studies Blue Lagoon rich nourishing cream is: Dermotologically tested and Paraben free."
you are kidding me LB! a foil packet in a box that we pay almost $30 for? so sad, so sad. it's expensive yes, but how are you going to convince me to shell over such a large amount of money with so little product to test with?
size: 2 mL
retail value: US$130 (30 mL)

4) L'Occitane Shea Dry Skin Hand Cream
"This hand cream penetrates quickly to protect, nourish and moisturize your hands. Rapidly absorbed with no oily traces, this hand cream doesn't need to be reapplied even after frequent hand washing. The minimal scent makes it suitable for men and women."
funny enough, i got this hand cream from L'Occitane for FREE and in a BIGGER size a couple of months ago - how does that work??
this Shea Hand Cream smells like a baby powder/oil to me which i actually like.
size: 10 mL
retail value: $30 (150 mL)

5) Coach Coach Love Eau de Parfum 
"Coach Love blends dewy petals and fresh greens with sensual woods, rich caramel and a hint of musk in a scent as unforgettable as falling in love. Apply perfume to your pulse points for a longer lasting scent. Remember not to rub your pulse points together, as this will bruise the scent."

i am not a huge fan of getting perfume samples in my beauty boxes but it is so hard to dislike them when they come in such cute bottles.
i like the florals behind the scent but at the same time, i think the musk makes it a little too strong.
size: 6.5 mL
retail value: $92 (100 mL)

6) Pandora's Makeup Box Pandora's Eyes Mascara in "Black"
"The perfect addition to your your collection for a more natural touch! A smudge and clump free mascara that provides you with gorgeous, glossy colour that will never irritate the eyes. Developed specifically for sensitive eyes, this mascara glides on easily and thickens the lashes while adding glorious shine. The long brush handle allows you to maneuver into hard to reach areas and the clear tube lets you know when you're running low!"
this mascara came at the right time since i was just finishing an old one so i decided to give Pandora a try. the mascara comes in a clear tube so you can actually tell when you are running low. i have never had that before  so it will be interesting to see how much i can actually use up. it is much more likely that the mascara dries out before i make a solid dent in it.
the brush is on the thin side and the mascara is a very wet formula. i even sniffed it... and it doesn't smell good but i guess you aren't supposed to be sniffing mascaras anyway. the mascara looks like a shiny black - it lengthens my lashes but doesn't do much for volume. some of my lashes stuck together since the formula is rather wet. it also holds a curl decently.
size: 10 mL (full size!)
retail value: $19

7) B. Kamins BB Cream 
"B. Kamins BB Cream is an 8-in-1 multitasking cream that instantly lifts your look! Power packed with anti-oxidants, botanicals and vitamins, this super hero formula helps to reduce fine lines, wrinkles and dullness. The BB Cream moisturizes, evens skin tone and provides sheer, luminous coverage. Get up and go with BB Cream!"

i haven't used this yet and there was no indication of color so i checked out the website. looks like there is only one color available since it has a "transparent colour-correcting formula". that doesn't make sense to me - how it can be transparent but still cover redness and etc?
this is a good sample size though and i like how it has a pump.
size: 15 g
retail value: $49 (50 mL)

8) Blue Lagoon Silica Mud Mask 
"The Silica mud is the Blue Lagoon's signature element. The pure white geothermal mud deep cleanses and exfoliates. Naturally strengthens skin's barrier function¹. Brings out the skin's inner glow, gives it a vital energy boost and smooth complexion. Excellent face & body mask. Use 2-3 times a week or when skin needs en extra boost. Fragrance and color free. For all skin types."

the prices for Blue Lagoon products are way out of my budget. wowsaaaa!
anyway, i will be updating this after tomorrow with pictures!

size: 30 mL
retail value: US$100 (200 mL)

all in all, i almost forgot about this box and i still think it is forgettable. i thought mine was bad but after reading all the other complaints on LB's Facebook page and checking out what the other girls got, i think i actually fared slightly better than some... i was lucky to get a BB cream and a full sized mascara.
still, not too happy with the box. putting them all side by side, the samples all look rather small. you'd figure for a box that costs about $30 and that ships once every three months, that LB would put more effort in the samples (foils? really?!) and ship on time (supposed to be delivered in March).
one other thing that really bugs me are the emails they send referring to a "Limited Time Opportunity" and how i am eligible to upgrade my membership to a semiannual/annual plan. first of all, LB sends these emails all the time! it is NOT a limited time offer. secondly, this is not an opportunity - i don't like their choice of words here since they make it seem like it is some special offer that they are giving me. pfffttt.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

GLOSSYBOX: March 2013

got my Glossybox on Tuesday and i am happy with it.
say what now??

check out the The Metropolitan Chic Glossybox (V1 or V3 depending on which Tresemme product you get):

1) ModelCo Cheek + Lip Tint in "Rosy Red" - i was quite excited about this product - it looks so fancy! i have one other product similar in function to this: the Benefit Benetint. the ModelCo one comes in a squeezable tube and blends out easily. it does not stain as well as the Benetint though. for both, i found it pretty useless on my lips - i'd have to use an excessive amount of the product to get it to actually show on my lips. on my cheeks however, i only need to dab the tiniest amount. the box says not to rub it in so i try my best to just dab it on - still, the majority of the tint remains on my fingers rather than on my cheeks. this product will be great to throw in my purse since i don't like carrying a powder blush around. 
size: 10 mL (full size!)
retail value: $24 

2) Jergens Natural Glow 3 Days to Glow Moisturizer in "Fair to Medium" - i've used moisturizers like this before but haven't exactly observed a difference. perhaps it's because i don't like to use them - waiting for the product to dry seems like such a hassle (cue: ain't nobody got time for that!). this moisturizer claims to make you one full shade darker within 3 days. guess i could start using it now since we still have snow on the ground and the sun won't be coming out anytime soon...

i am glad that Glossybox took my skin tone into consideration! the 3 Days to Glow Moisturizer also comes in "Medium to Tan". the product says "No Odour" and instead smells like perfume. 
size: 120 mL (full size!)
retail value: $12.99

3) L'Oreal Paris Youth Code Dark Spot Corrector Serum - i'd say the sound that came out of my mouth when i saw this can be described as a squeal.
i've been wanting to try a dark spot corrector FOREVER and i just couldn't decide which one to invest my money in since they can be quite pricey. i am very delighted that i get to try this one out and am especially glad that it is a serum since they are more effective than creams. i have a few sun spots on my cheeks near my nose so i will be using this serum completely and will post before and after pics!

the first actual pump didn't seem enough so i did 2 - which was a mistake because then i had way too much. i learned that you can actually control the amount the pump distributes. also handy is that the pump can be twisted and locked. the serum has a nice scent and isn't overly oily. 
but when i rubbed my face where i had applied the product, i felt little balls pilling underneath my fingers - not sure if it was just the product or my actual skin. i tried using less product and there is less of it but it's still there. anyone else have this happen?

the product says that it is clinically proven and that i should see great results within 12 weeks so i am crossing my fingers!
size: 30 mL (full size!)
retail value: $29.99

4) TRESsemme Platinum Strength Deep Conditioning Treatment - this makes it full-sized product number 4. this treatment reminds me of my Joico K-Pak Restorative Treatment which i absolutely love. i got it back in July and i'm still savoring it. 
i can use this conditioning treatment in place of my regular conditioner and it is supposed to repair up to 2 years of damage after 5 uses - howwwwww do they calculate that? hahaha - such claims should always be taken lightly. i must say though, that i definitely noticed a difference in my hair after using this - it feels lighter and softer and looks shinier. love!
size: 177 mL
retail value: $5.99

5) Beautiful Movements Cosmetics Eyeshadow in "Platinum Tiara" - the color is described by BM as a "rich, sparkly grey" and is a part of their "Starry Eyed Glamour Collection". although i prefer my greys to be darker than this, it is actually quite pretty. it applies very sheer but the color is buildable. it is also very, very shimmery and i love the name. in fact, many of the other colors on their website are gorgeous. their eyeshadows are 100% mineral. if you are interested in purchasing their products, shipping to Canada costs ~$7.00.

if you noticed that there is mention of a Kimberley all over the website, it is because they are referring to Kimberley Wyatt who is one of the co-founders of Beautiful Movements and previously part of the Pussycat Dolls.
size: 1 g
retail value:  £7.00/$10.93 (2 g)


so those are the reasons why i am delighted with March's Glossybox! as expected, the majority of the Glossybox was full sized but also of a drugstore brand. still, i am very excited to try out the L'Oreal Dark Spot Corrector Serum. i guess if dark spots and sun spots were not a concern of yours, you would not be as pleased as i was. i can even go as far as say that this is one of my favorite Glossyboxes ever.
what did you think of your Glossybox? i've only seen one other blogger post about it so maybe some people haven't gotten theirs yet or is it because many unsubscribed?

Monday, April 01, 2013

IPSY BAG: March 2013

my March ipsy bag arrived on March 13th but to my dismay, i found the whole bag sopping wet. turns out the bottom of the Juice Beauty item had completely broken off - perhaps it was frozen? 
and so i sent a sad email to ipsycare on the 16th (along with a sad photo of the soaked contents) and got a response back on the 18th. ipsy later sent me a tracking number for a replacement bag, which i received on the 27th. thank you for the kind and timely response, ipsy!

my second bag arrived just fine and now i finally have a chance to review it for you.

let's start with the bag - cute, no? (and now i have two, teehee!)
March's bag is themed "The Great Escape" -  can't help but think of "The Sweet Escape" by Gwen Stefani.
1) Juice Beauty Hydrating Mist
"Juice Beauty Hydrating Mist tones, hydrates, and refreshes your face and hair while on the go, anytime of the day. Hydrate with the refreshing blends of organic juices for a fresh, radiant complexion. "

i sprayed this on my face this morning and was trying to think of a way to describe the smell when my boyfriend asks, "does it have rosehip?" and i'm like "whhhhhhhhat - wait...". turns out he is right! he remembered 'rosehip' from buying me the Australis Finishing Spritz - oh, what a smart boyfriend that one is.

anyway, i do not like the scent but you can't blame them since it is made only with organic ingredients. i am not a huge fan of this mist since it makes me feel oilier and i already have enough of that, thank you very much. it also somewhat irritated my skin at first contact but the irritation went away (also do not inhale through your mouth right after - it doesn't taste good either).
promotion: 20% off purchase of $30+ (until April 10, 2013)
size: 30 mL
retail value: $22 (200 mL)

2) La Fresh Travel Lite Makeup Remover Wipes
"La Fresh® Travel Lite® portable towlette wipes are perfect for jetsetters, go-getters, outdoor enthusiasts and multi-taskers everywhere. Towlette packets are small in size, designed for practicality and are easy to apply discreetly. Each item is carry-on friendly and slim enough to slip into a pocket, purse or wallet. Perfectly portable, La Fresh® makes beauty a breeze when you’re on-the-go. For a refreshing getaway, grab any Travel Lite® and Live. Life. La Fresh.™ "
more La Fresh, and more makeup remover wipes. very ho-hum. on a more positive note, we get to try 8 instead of a single-use wipe.
promotion: 30% off (until May 31, 2013 & Canadians are excluded :/ )
size: 8 wipes (full size!)
retail value: $1.99

3) Yaby Eyeshadow Refill in "ES296 So Vein" and "ES442 Sand Dune"
"Whether you want to make a dramatic statement or just add a veil of color to your eyes, the yaby eyeshadow refills are extremely easy to work with. Can be used wet or dry and the smooth texture allows blending with ease. All shadows are vegan friendly and the pans are reusable for mixing. Glam Bag subscribers receive two of 80 fabulous shades. "
the colors i got are both matte and not shades i'd wear often. i think the size of them are cute and portable but it is difficult to get a brush in there since the pans are smaller than a dime.

the color payoff is just okay as well (see below for swatch). "Sand Dune" is less pigmented and clashes with my skin tone. both colors fade almost completely after a work day. not sure if this was affected by the Juice Beauty mist... i will attempt applying these eyeshadows wet at a later date.
promotion: 25% off (until April 15, 2013; Canada shipping starts at $7.50) 
size: 15.5 mm each (full size!)
retail value: $3.35 each

4) GlamRX Mini Freestyle Palette
"The GlamRX Mini Freestyle Palette was made exclusively for ipsy Glam Bag subscribers. The magnetic base is the perfect spot to store pan-only eyeshadows (2 of which are included in this Glam Bag!), blushes & bronzers, or whatever you need for perfect for quick touch ups on the go! Whether you are headed off to spring break or just need a cute & clever way to store products in your bag, you can create the perfect makeup look and take it with you with your exclusive GlamRX Mini Freestyle Palette. "
i like how ipsy paired up the tiny magnetic Yaby eyeshadows with this tiny GlamRx palette. the palette is slightly bigger than a business card so it would be handy if you needed to touch up and you were only carrying a clutch or something. the mirror is also a nice touch!
promotion: 20% off GlamRX Touch Up Palette (until April 15, 2013)
size: 1 mini palette (full size!) 
retail value: N/A (not sold on the website but the Touch Up Palette is $16.50)

oh blargh i forgot to take a group photo again!! <insert photo here later!>
overall, this ipsy bag was contained items that i have not received from a beauty bag before but it is also not my favorite. i am happy with the customer service though. looking forward to April's bag! there has been sneak peeks popping up here and there which i am trying to avoid...

whoohooooo yeehooooo
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