"Be a first rate version of yourself, not a second rate version of someone else."

Friday, 29 April 2011

Nars Dogon Eyeshadow

I just picked up this eye shadow today at Holt Renfrew. I had been craving this purchase every since I saw the promo pics on temptalia! This is my second Nars Eyeshadow purchase ever. Quite frankly, this will probably be my final eye shadow purchase for a while. I just don't need anymore. I decided to cave in and buy this limited edition eye shadow due to the fact that it is completely wearable and includes a taupe shade. I adore taupes.

The lighter taupe shade of Dogon is a very light taupe with icy green shimmer. It is reminiscent of Club by Mac in that it's a duochrome that flashes green. That's where the comparison ends. Dogon is much lighter, much more of "all over the lid" type colour. It's very appealing, and truly makes my grey eyes pop! I find it really pulls out the tiny flecks of green that can be seen in my eyes in the sun. The darker shade appears to be a charcoal black. On my skin tone, the teal and green shimmer comes out against my pale skin. I can really see this colour being a fantastic liner and crease shade. The Nars MUA used it on my outer V. I tried to replicate the look when I was playing around with it just now. Again, this eye shadow will very easily bring you from day time to evening. There is a big of fall out with the darker shade, but it wiped away easily when I cleaned up my under eye area. I find this step is necessary when applying most dark eye shadows. Overall, if you enjoy taupes, greens and charcoals, this eye duo is for you.

As far as value goes, this eye shadow duo retails for $38.00 Cdn. This is steep.  This is a splurge item. I will never recommend spending $38.00 on an eyeshadow every week of your life. For the record, this picture was taken after a work out! Hello longevity!

I have planned for this purchase. I stay within my budget and only purchase colours that I know I will truly use. This baby is going to get a lot of action. I play on wearing it tonight. In fact, I CAN NOT WAIT to wear this tonight!

Thursday, 28 April 2011

My Evening Skin Care Routine

Skincare is a highly personal and highly annoying aspect of anyone's beauty routine. Quite frankly, it's the area of beauty where one is most likely to over spend and waste money trying to figure out what works. Everyone's skin is different.

I appreciate the fact that this sucks. It really does. Why do we have to play trial and error on our face and with our wallets? Believe me, if I had the magic answer, I'd be a millionaire. I don't want to lie to you in any way, so I'll remain an average Josephine til I can market the perfect the routine.

My Skin:

  • reactive. I will break out if I fuss with it too much
  • very fair, I burn then tan MAC Prolong Wear NW15 works. MUFE Mat plus Velvet 125, MAC Face and Body in C1 or N1, Nars Sheer Glow in Mont Blanc
  • sensitive. Perfumes in products make my skin freak out. If you're the same, stay away from Guerlain. Trust me. Ouchies.
  • combination. Before I figured out my skin routine, my skin was super oily. It was only compensating for the products that I was using. I was stripping my skin of valuable oils. This was not good. Now that I know that my skin is dry- combination with an oilier Tzone, I can control the oil. I think a bit of shine is a good thing. It means that I won't get as many wrinkles, and it just looks better. I only have to blot between 4 and 5 p.m. 
  • I do the majority of my repairing and moisturizing in the evening. It soaks in all night. I wake up refreshed and glowing on most days. 
  • My skin does not shed. It's a condition. I have to pull double duty with my exfoliation because my skin just won't do it naturally. It sucks. I break out if I don't pay attention.
  • I do not wash my face in the morning. I'll get to my morning routine with another post.

The following products have not reacted in any way on my highly reactive skin. Seriously- if something has even a hint of an allergen in it- my face will erupt in painful, itchy blotches. The worst offenders will break me out almost immediately. In fact, I'm still recovering from two very painful and unusual cystic pimples thanks to Vichy Aqua Thermal 24 Hour Moisture in the pump bottle. Who puts alcohol in moisturizer? Seriously. Shame on me for not inspecting the ingredients.

The following products are my nightly routine. I would use these products after a bath or shower. For the record, I don't use soap based products anywhere near my face. It's instant flaky dry broken out skin that turns crazy oily the next day. I only wipe my face with warm water and use make up removers that I will explain soon.

From Left to Right

1. Lush Eau Roma Water:

I use this whenever I feel like my skin needs a pick me up. It is refreshing and cooling. It's nice to have, really. One huge plus: I've had this bottle for 6 months now. It's still going strong! Cost: $17.95 for 250ml

2. Clinique Take the Day Off Eye Make Up Remover

Although this is a sample, I will be purchasing a proper size bottle soon. This make up remover does not bother my eyes, clog my pores and leaves no mascara debris. I have sensitive eyes so I appreciate the fact that this does not sting or smudge all over my eye ball. This sample has lasted me 3 plus months. Hello Value! It's effective therefore I use less! Future Cost: $21.50 for 125ml. Plus: I won't be purchasing until a good sample set comes out! Gift with purchase!

3. Reversa Glycolic Acid Solution for Oily and Acne Prone Skin

This is a product that my skin requires for exfoliation. As you can imagine, my sensitive skin does not take well to super abrasive scrubs. Hello break outs, redness and oil! This product has been an absolute dream for my skin. It unclogs my pores, cleanses and brightens. I used to have a lot of uneven spots with a rough texture until I found this product 3 months ago. I'm almost at the end of this bottle.
Cost: $25.00 for 175 ml I got this during a Shoppers Drug Mart sale. Reversa goes on sale for 25% every once in a while- I wait til that time.

4. Vichy Purete Thermale 3 in 1 Make Up Remover/Cleanser.

This product came in a set with something else the moisturizer I spoke of before that seriously messed up my skin. This product is really interesting. It's like a cleanser/moisturizer that does not need to be rinsed off. If I've had a heavy eye make up look that maybe the clinique missed, and I don't want to rub hard anymore, I just pop a little of this on my eyes to sooth my skin. Sometimes this is all I use in the morning to do a quick pick me up. I pop it on some cotton pads and off I go!
Cost: part of a set that was worth $37.00 Cdn. It's nice to have but not necessary.

5. i.d. Bare Vitamins Skin Revver Upper

This is seriously the 8th or 9th bottle of this product that I've purchased. It's my HG chemical exfoliator/face mask/awesome skin care item. I use this more in the summer for extra exfoliation. However, this product combined with the glycolic acid is my go to sucker punch for clear skin. The two really penetrate my pores and keep me clear ! I would be lost, seriously lost without this product. I keep one as back up. It adds a touch of moisture while eating away at my dull skin cells. It has a bad rep online, but I need to state that this product is not a suitable make up primer. It's best left for night time as a treatment for glowing skin.
Cost: $26.00 at Sephora. One bottle lasts me 3-6 months. I tend to use it more in the summer.

6. Estee Lauder Night Recovery Treatment

This sample has really shocked me lately. I had it sitting around forever, then I finally decided to use it. I put it on as one of my last steps right before bed. I'm telling you - I see a serious difference the morning after using this stuff. My skin looks alive, plump and GLOWS. I love this product. Since it was a tiny bottle, I was using it every other night. When I purchase it, it will be used nightly. I have a feeling this will be an expensive purchase. However, that tiny bottle lasted me a few weeks, and I was probably using more than I should because it was such a odd bottle.
Cost: It's listed as $63.00 Cdn on Sears.ca. I'll wait for a big sample event to purchase this. Gulp. But it makes my skin GLOW! Splurge alert.

7. Bobbi Brown Extra Night Eye Cream

I received this as a gift at Christmas. I've barely made a dent in the bottle. I'm not 100% sure I enjoy this, but I don't see the need to get something else until this is all used up. I find it a bit thick, maybe too thick for my particular needs. I think it's expensive, too. I'll be honest, I'm just on the fence with this product. I think I like it better on my cuticles than my eyes. Lol. So bad, eh? I'm pretty sure it's $50 Cdn. All her products pretty much sit around that price point.

Wow, I know I'm verbose but that's ridiculous! If you've stuck with me so far, I hope this helps you in your search! Since skin care is a constant battle, I will update if I make any changes. However, it's safe to say that number 2, 3, 5 and 6 will be in my life for a while!


Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Good Beauty Buy: Nars Ashes to Ashes Eyeshadow Single

Nars Ashes to Ashes is a taupey, goldy, shiny, lovely all over lid colour. I love this especially when I'm in a rush. All I have to do is run this over my eye lid a couple of times, and it really makes my grey eyes pop! I usually finish with a touch of black eye liner pencil- very thin and close to the lash line- then a lot of black mascara. This look carries me all through the work day. Oddly enough, I have pretty slick eye lids, but I prefer this without a base. I find it wears well through out the day. I like the "rocker" smudgey look so I don't mind messy eye shadow by the end of the day. If I'm going out after work, I just rub it around a bit, maybe add another layer then thicken up the black eye liner. It really is that simple to use! I purchased this for $26 Canadian from Sephora. This is an absolute sound investment in your make up collection. It's versatile, reliable and absolutely beautiful.  You will not regret this particular shade for Nars. I can not speak for the other singles, but I've heard some good things about Nars Fez!

Forever 21 Accessories Haul

I stopped by the mall today after leaving my boyfriend's house with every intention of grabbing some spring clothes from F21. I have approximately $200 saved for new spring clothes. I'm doing WeightWatchers so I'm finding that a lot of my clothes are getting a little baggy. $200 isn't a lot for a wardrobe and shoes, but the company I work for is very laid back, so really any new clothes are for social stuff. I wear black pants and a plain top/sweater daily to work and no one notices. However, I tend to accessorize so I find that F21 has some really great options for cheap jewelry that can be really excellent if you're willing to dig. ha. I didn't have too look very far today, so I was actually talking myself out of some things just to save some money. All in all, I did pretty well! I spent $30.00 Cdn. I'm left with $170 for spring sandals, hopefully a pair of shorts and some tank tops. A nice dress wouldn't hurt, either. From what I saw today, I won't be finding those goodies at forever 21. I think I'm slightly too old for their demographic. (I'm only in my mid-20's so that isn't fair!)

 I was really impressed with the quality of these bangles!
 Just some pretty girlie things for spring!
I can't wait to wear this necklace with a nice black top! 

Monday, 25 April 2011

How Do You Budget For Your Hauls?

Hauls are a very exciting and rewarding experience for any make up junkie. I've been collecting make up for a couple of years now, and I've realized that it can be really tough to divorce feelings of "want want want" with feelings of "need need need." As we all know, needs are important. Making provisions for proper needs in our lives make us feel both secure and accomplished. However, making provisions for wants such as make up hauls, ahem, leaves us with a ridiculous adrenaline rush and a huge smile! Hello! It's new make up!

I've always been very uneasy about starting a blog about some of the things that I love in my life. To be honest, all my trepidations were built around the simple fact that I've watched thousands of haul videos. Quite frankly, all that spending makes me uneasy. I love watching it though. I noticed a giant hole missing in the beauty and life blogging world! Where are all the budgets? It's easy to drops hundreds on cosmetics. I wish I made enough money where that could happen on a regular basis. If you fall in that category and have no consumer debt- Oh boy, you are one lucky girl or boy!

Instead, I have to learn to budget so that I can walk confidently up to a Nars counter and go, "I'll have that, that, that, that and that!" Consumer debt terrifies me, but new make up makes me happy! My only solution? I save save save. I have a dedicated beauty budget that I add a bit too every pay cheque. That little bit can range from $10 to $20 to whatever change I find.

Do you guys have any beauty budget ideas? I'd love to hear how anyone else approaches their purchases! Are you a splurger or a saver/planner!?

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Ins & Outs


-sunscreen- I finally got the good window at work-However, I will definitely age prematurely if I don't get going on the sunscreen all over! Any suggestions for a good, non acne causing sunscreen would be GREATLY appreciated!
-sweaty work outs that get the heart pumpin' Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred is my go to this month! It burns my abs!
-MAC Hue- Just found it at the bottom of a purse. I like to smush it all over my lips at work when I go a little heavy on the eye make up for some balance. Glad to have you back, Hue. (More like- glad to remember I own you haha)
-Vichy Eau Thermale Purete 3 in 1- I finished this bottle this week. I really didn't realize how crucial it was in my routine. Nothing beats a good cotton swab of this to really get all the "end of day" grime and gunk off my face. Time to repurchase!
- Cadbury Mini Eggs- enough said.
-YAY Benefit Gift @ Sephora- Very nice sephora employee popped this into my bag with some NARS Smudge Proof Eye Shadow Base...wooo! So nice. It used to be the 500 pt gift! Need to do some volunteer work or donate in return


-Rimmel Day 2 Night Mascara- it's all flaked under my eyes. Not cool. Not cool.
-I lost one of my favourite rings. I hope it will come back to me like my MAC Hue did.
-My cheapo Alexa Chung Mulberry rip off from Forever21 tore in half today. TORE. I would provide photos but I chucked the waste of $30 Cdn into the bin as soon as it happened


Friday, 22 April 2011

Some People Collect Cards, Others Coins, But I Like...

Pretty Things! This is my first blog post, obviously. I'm starting this blog in the name of beauty and also life, in general. I would like to chat about everything from make up to skin care to drugstore to high end to working out to decorating to enjoying life.. you know, the good stuff! With all that said, here is my first mini little sneak peak at what's to come! Some of my collection that I keep out to make my mornings more stream lined!