August 17, 2012

Marcelle's Waterproof Liquid DIP-PEN Eyeliner Sticks Around

Eyeliner is such a big part of my everyday makeup routine; I wear eyeliner nearly every day, I think. Now, while I do enjoy using cream or gel liners, I'd still prefer wearing liquid as I find that it tends to last longer even without using primers.

The last liquid eyeliner that impressed me was Eyeko's Graffiti Eyeliner Pen, but it's only available to Canadians through Eyeko's online store and I wanted something that was more readily available to me. Enter Marcelle's new Waterproof Liquid DIP-PEN Eyeliner 10H+.

Blackest Black and Purple

I purchased Blackest Black and Purple, though it's also available in True Brown and Navy (I plan on purchasing the latter as well). Blackest Black is a matte black while Purple has a bit of shimmer running through.

The DIP-PEN is quite easy to work with, though I find that Purple is more liquid-y and has more slip -- possibly because of the shimmer? Regardless, they both apply effortlessly.

When I first started using this eyeliner, there was some very minor irritation. BUT, I definitely think it's due to the fact that I haven't used a liquid liner in so long. I had to adjust to using a felt-tip applicator again, but I experience absolutely no irritation now.

Blackest Black


The DIP-PEN Eyeliner lasts the entire day on me, which is what makes this eyeliner really impressive. I did dissolve a bit when I cried (I get emotional, kay?!) and saw some streaks down my face, but it was fairly minimal. Other than that, it just doesn't budge; not even on the hottest day we've had in Vancouver so far.

This eyeliner is definitely a winner for me. At $13.99 CAD, it is very reasonably priced, and while I may still be intrigued enough to purchase a similar product by a higher end brand, I could see myself purchasing this over and over again. Precisely because it's inexpensive.

What's your favourite liquid liner?

August 8, 2012

Thanking My Lucky Stars For Marcelle BB Cream-To-Powder

You know, I love me some Marcelle BB Cream... My only issue was that it wasn't really suitable for my combination skin. There is no oil control (not that it claims to have any) and I found that I lost some coverage throughout the day, even when I set it with powder. So I decided to just use it on my more low-key days when I still wanted to look polished, but wasn't too concerned about it fading away eventually.

But now, Marcelle has come out with the new BB Cream-to-Powder ($22.95 CAD) and it's everything that I wanted the traditional BB Cream to be!

First, the packaging... This BB Cream-to-Powder comes in a sleek, white compact; it contains a sponge and a sizeable built-in mirror. This compact feels quite sturdy and I really like that the sponge is stored on top of the product, instead of below.

This product comes in two shades, light to medium and medium to dark. Obviously, I purchased light to medium, which is the same shade I have in the original BB Cream. It contains "self-adjusting pigments," which means it's pretty much a perfect match for my skin.

For those of you who are kind of living under a rock ( :p ) and don't know what a BB Cream is, it stands for Blemish Balm and was originally formulated for people who have undergone any medical treatment that would cause skin sensitivity. BB Creams would provide them with enough coverage to even out their skin without causing an irritation, as these products are basically makeup and skincare rolled into one.

Marcelle claims that this BB Cream-to-Powder has "8-in-1" benefits: it evens out skin tone, hydrates, protects, regenerates, controls shine (!!!), soothes, corrects, and brightens. It also has a "photo luminescent diamond core complex" which means... Actually, I don't know what that means. But it sounds awesome, no? :p

To top it off, this product is hypo-allergenic, perfume free, paraben free, oil free, and non-comodogenic. Marcelle, you need to stop being so flippin' awesome! (I lied, don't ever stop)

(L-R: swatched & blended out)

(pre-blush face with some concealing underneath the eyes)

I love how easily this product smoothes onto my skin -- it glides on and blends so effortlessly. It feels really silky and sets to a satin finish. It evens out my skin beautifully while still looking very natural, as if my skin just happens to look that good. I would say this BB Cream-to-Powder has light, but buildable coverage; it layers on nicely, though it does require a bit more blending on my drier areas (around my nose). But the best part is that it stays with me through a full work day. There's definitely some shine coming through as the day goes on, but nowhere near as much as when I wear the original BB Cream. It probably does fade a bit as well, but I honestly haven't noticed. At least not during my workday when I'm more likely to catch my reflection in the mirror. 

As I mentioned before, this Cream-to-Powder compact is exactly what I wished the original BB Cream was; i.e. everything the original product already was, but with added oil control action. Ahh, I love! <3

Are you a fan of BB Creams?

August 6, 2012

Lipstick Bandits: Summer Sheers Make Me Feel Fine...

The Lipstick Bandits are back and this time, we're talking about sheer lippies!

Now, I've said it before on this blog - so much so that I probably sound like a broken record :p - but sheers aren't really my thing. That said, there are some sheer lipsticks that have caught my eye in the past year; but for this post, I thought I would resurrect a product that I reviewed at the beginning of June. The product in question? Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in En Vogue.

One of the things I love about this lipstick is that despite its sheerness, it's still pigmented enough that the colour shows up on my lips. And what a lovely colour it is! En Vogue is described as a "bright coral," but since it's a sheer formula, it won't frighten anyone who's scared of bright, vivid shades. There's also some slight shimmer shot through, which gives my lips such a pretty, glossy finish. 

(my face was not cooperating with me so you get this lame, cop-out of a full face shot)
(also went overboard with the blush... if there was an MUA card, mine would be revoked)
(Rae-Rae, I know you're gonna want to photoshop the shiz out of this :p)

Anyhoo... Although I love me some En Vogue, I can't say I'm fully on board the Sheer Train. Here's why: My lips are fairly pigmented, but there are some days where they're more pink and others where they're more neutral. When I took the full face shot yesterday, my lips were more pink, so the coral-y goodness wasn't as evident as it was on the day I took the lip swatch photo. 

Still, En Vogue is one of those lipsticks that is easy to wear ; you don't have to think too much about it, just slap it on and BOOM -- prettified. Such is the nature of sheer lipsticks, I suppose! :)

So now we come to my favourite part: checking out the other Lipstick Bandits' Summer Sheer picks! We're missing the beautiful Jenny of My Funny Valentine, but show her some love anyway and be sure to go check out each Bandit's post. I'm sure you will love what they're going to feature -- I know I always do!

What's your favourite sheer lipstick?

August 3, 2012

Skincare Week: Face Mask Friday + A Bonus Review

Ladies and gents ladies (are there any men who read my blog?), welcome to Face Mask Friday!

I've been doing my pampering on Friday nights for a few weeks now... I know, I'm wild like that. I normally do 2 face masks and a hair mask (The Body Shop's Rainforest Radiance Hair Butter -- this stuff is amazing!) before continuing on with the rest of my skincare regime. So I thought that doing a Face Mask Friday post would be the most appropriate thing to do today...

The skoah. aha mask was used on me when I got my facial at skoah. this past mother's day. I've tried cleansers with AHAs and BHAs (like this one from Murad), but it was a bit harsh for me, so I was really excited to purchase this mask because it felt lovely and seemed quite gentle on my skin.

I typically leave this mask on for 10-15 minutes and then I rinse off with warm water. You're allowed to have it on overnight, and it does dry a bit after a few minutes (you can pat your face and not remove any product), but I have yet to try doing that. 

Now, I'm no scientist, nor am I any sort of skincare expert. But if I'm not mistaken, AHAs (or alpha hydroxy acids) are supposed to exfoliate while simultaneously hydrating the skin. This type of exfoliant could be a better choice for people with sensitivity to physical exfoliants as there are no solid particles that can abrade the skin.

I did notice that my skin felt like I've lost a layer after using this mask -- presumably, those are the dead skin cells. It did feel a bit weird at first, but I've since gotten used to it. It's quite gentle, which is great for me since I've developed some sensitivity within the past year (what's up with that, skin?). My skin feels quite smooth afterwards and I follow up with the Caudalie mask for a more targeted treatment; I figure this second mask will work even better with no pesky dead skin cells getting in the way.

Still, it can't really replace that feeling of freshly scrubbed skin, so I still use my Olay Pro-X Facial Cleansing Brush once in a while.

I purchased this Purifying Mask from Caudalie ($40 CAD) along with the Vinosource hydrating serum because I wanted something that would help with my blemishes (those stubborn little buggers! >_<), but wouldn't dry out my skin. Caudalie does state that this mask is non-drying and I have to agree with that. 

But the best thing is that after using this product, my blemishes look much smaller and are less red. It doesn't completely remove them, unfortunately, I think I'll need something more potent than this mask for them to go away; but I do see a difference! 

Blemishes look smaller and my skin feels hydrated? I think we've got ourselves a winner! 

Bonus round...

This Embryolisse moisturizer has been lauded by makeup artists on YouTube, so of course I had to try it. I've been using it at nights because I like to use something more moisturizing at that time; but since it's summer, my go-to nighttime moisturizer - the Josie Maran Argan Oil - is much too heavy at the moment.

Lait-Crème Concentré, which I purchased for $30 CAD through Jordane Cosmetics, is not too thick and feels lovely on the skin. It has a light, but very pleasant scent; it kind of reminds me of a less intense version of the Wild Rose Moisturizer by Korres.

Embryolisse calls it a 24-Hour Miracle Cream and while I have yet to experience any skin miracles, I have to say that my skin has been feeling rather nice in the mornings whenever I use this at night. Combined with the Caudalie serum, it has made my skin softer & more supple, and my skin feels very comfortable (neither dry nor oily) when I wake up. It sinks in quite nicely as well and it doesn't make the surface of my skin feel tacky or oily at all, which is exactly how I like my moisturizers.

And thus ends Skincare Week, folks!

I hope you liked this series of posts... I know it was a lot of fun for me to crank these out. It was definitely a great way to get me to finally write about some of these products. Anyway, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and if you've tried any of the products in this post, let me know how you like them in the comments! :)

Oh, and tell me...

What are your favourite face masks?

August 1, 2012

Skincare Week: Caudalie Vinosource S.O.S. Thirst Quenching Serum

Sometime last month, as I was sitting at my workspace, I started noticing that my cheeks felt really, really dry. I patted the skin in that area, but the surface felt really oily. I had my suspicions about what was going on, but I wanted to get other people's opinions. So, I turned to the best source of beauty news/tips/tricks/advice on the internet, TWITTER, and posed the question. The question being: "what the heck is going on with my skin, you guys?!"

A lovely Twitter follower (MakeupByNaomi) suggested that my skin was dehydrated (*dingdingding*) and suggested using a hydrating serum as opposed to a moisturizer, since my skin does tend to get oily throughout the day.

So after work, I immediately headed to my local Sephora so I could have a peek at their hydrating serums. A lovely SA took me over to the Caudalie section and recommended the Vinosource S.O.S. Thirst Quenching Serum. It's been a few weeks now since I've started using this serum and my skin has been feeling absolutely lovely!

From Caudalie: This high potency serum captures and continually diffuses water deep within the skin to restore its moisture balance and leave it feeling soft and supple. 

Ever since I've started using this serum, my skin has no longer felt dry; at least not when I use my regular skincare products. However, there are times when I test something new that turns out to be a bit harsher than I'm used to and this serum helps to keep my skin hydrated despite the drying effects of said products. But when combined with my regular skincare regimen, my skin feels absolutely amazing -- hydrated, smooth, and with no sign of the discomfort that dryness brings to your skin.

At $48 CAD, it's certainly not the most expensive of serums on the market and one pump is more than enough for my entire face as well as my neck. I like to pat this onto my skin, as opposed to rubbing it in; something I've been doing with my serums and moisturizes as of late. It sinks in after about a minute, at which point I apply my moisturizer (Kiehl's Açai Damage-Correcting Moisturizer during the day, Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré at night, and Josie Maran Argan Oil when my skin is particularly dry). Because this serum hydrates my skin brilliantly, I find that I don't need to use as much of my moisturizer. I do still get oily throughout the day, but I don't find that I'm getting oilier because of this product. No, my skin still behaves normally with regards to oiliness, but I no longer feel any discomfort in my skin due to dehydration.

When I wake up in the morning and feel my skin, it feels well smooth, moisturized, and supple... I think we'd all like a bit of that for our skin, no? So if you find that your skin is dehydrated, I definitely recommend the Vinosource S.O.S. Thirst Quenching Serum from Caudalie. My skin's loving it and I think yours will, too!

What's your favourite serum?


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