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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A Burt's Bees double-header

Hello all, 

here with two Burt's Bees products to review for you: the Ultra Moisturizing Lip Treatment and the Citrus Facial Scrub. The lip treatment is available widely for around $4.99. The Citrus Facial Scrub is a bit harder to get a hold of in Canada - I got mine at a local heath food shop for around $13. Here they are:
The lip hydration sensation.

Let's talk about the facial scrub first. This product has a bit of a cult following so I was eager to give it a whirl. It's a brown scrub which smells like Christmas, you mix it with a bit of water and massage it over your face. Rinse. It then makes a gross mess in your shower/sink waahoo. Anyway, this was a bit too emollient for me. It left an oily film over my face which I didn't enjoy. I am not really a fan of scrubby, physical exfoliants at this point. I go for a nice little glycolic acid instead. So, all-in-all, I couldn't bring myself to use this up on my face. I used it as a body scrub instead - a purpose for which it was way too gentle. So, ya. Won't be repurchasing. 

Next up, the lip treatment. This was not "ultra moisturizing" in my opinion. While it wasn't terrible (it was better than a Lip Smacker), it wasn't great. It was a far cry from my Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream. I honestly think good old Nivea or Blistex is better. This had the texture of Vaseline and I didn't feel like it was replenishing moisture back into the lips. A no-go. Will not repurchase. 

Two disappointments from Burt's Bees! I sense a dark trend...

Clara xx 

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Rose Water Toner, that little extra

Happy Saturday all, 

here today to review a nice little toner for you. Calling it a toner might be a bit of stretch, mind you. I finished up Heritage's rose water spray. You get 8 ounces in a bottle with a nice little spray nozzle. I paid $11 for this at my local health food shop. It took me ages to use it up: we're talking like a year. Here is an image:

Rose Petals Rosewater 8 oz  w/atomizer

Basically, I would use this spray after toning with a glycolic. My skin gets that little tingly sensation (ok - some light stinging) after using the glycolic and I found this lovely, gentle spray to be just the ticket before applying my serum. I also enjoyed this if my face needed a little "wake-up" if I was feeling sick or tired or hot, and if I'd over-powdered my face. I don't think that this product really did anything to the appearance of my skin. I don't think it was hydrating or clarifying or anything else. But the sensation of having a nice, natural rose scented product spritzed on the face was delightful. And the price point is right on. 

I would definitely repurchase. I love rose-scented things. I think, if you're going for a spray floral water, you don't need to splash out on something expensive (see: Caudalie's Beauty Elixir). I'm sceptical that these sprays "do" anything beyond smell and feel great. I may experiment with a lavender essence one next. 

Go forth and spray with abandon, 


Saturday, October 19, 2013

Review: Philosophy field of flowers wildflower blossom shower gel

Hey everyone! I haven't posted in ages, so thank goodness Clara has taken the helm the past few months. I'm back with a great product that I've just recently finished. It's the philosophy field of flowers wildflower blossom shampoo, shower gel and bubble bath. Surprisingly, I've used this in all three of its uses but I mostly used it as a shower gel. 

It is 480mL and it will run you about $30. I got mine from the Bay. Pricey! But 480mL is a lot of product. I really only used a little bit each time, and it lasted me about 7.5 months. That seems like pretty good value to me. 

Here's a pic: 

Let's talk about the product. It has a wonderful scent. You know I love me some floral, and this does not disappoint. It's name fits perfectly. I don't think this is a particularly overpowering scent, and I certainly never got sick of it though after almost 8 months I was definitely ready for a change. It lathers nicely. It doesn't have the best ingredients. The second ingredient on the list is sodium laureth sulfate, but I knew that going in. I know that philosophy isn't an all natural, all pure ingredients brand, despite what it advertises itself to be. But I wanted to try out a product from them. While I don't love the ingredient list, the product was fine but I did find it a tad on the drying side. 

The one thing I didn't love about the product (apart from the SLS) is that the smell doesn't linger on the skin- at all. My skin also never felt particularly moisturizing after my shower. Like I mentioned above, I found that if I didn't moisturize after I showered my skin would be super dry- even in the summer. Bummer, but I just went with it. But for this reason mainly, I won't be repurchasing this product. 

As a side note, when I tried to google it, I noticed that the wildflower blossom scent is no longer on the philosophy website with the other field of flowers products. Odd. But, I would imagine that this review would apply to the other field of flowers shower gel/shampoo/bubble bath products. 

No regrets on buying this product, but I probably won't buy it again. I definitely want something more moisturizing. 

happy shopping!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Eyebrow Pencils reviewed (MAC and Clinique face-off)

Hey all, 

so, let's talk about eyebrow pencils. They are a makeup product which I use up quickly - second only to mascara. I've gone back and forth between MAC eyebrow pencil in Fling ($19) and Clinique Superfine Liner for brows in Soft Blonde ($18). Both are ashy, muted colours which look natural against my fair colouring and ashy blonde hair. Here are some images:

 Eye Brows

Superfine Liner for Brows
Now, the reality is that these products are very similar. They are both precise in their application, not too powdery or hard, and natural (on me) in tone. Both contain little product and get used up quite quickly. The lasting power seems good to me, but since I go for a natural application I might have a less clear take on that than someone who goes for a more dramatic look. I would recommend either, though if you're on a budget recognize that since you'll be buying these frequently the cost will be a factor. 

If you're just getting started with eyebrow pencils, go with a nice light shade and stick to the natural shape of your brow. Either the Clinique or the MAC would serve you well. Having polished brows makes a surprisingly big impact on your look - especially if you are going to have your photo taken. If you're a blondie like me, filling in your brows can help you avoid the disappearing features effect. Think of this product as mascara for brows: it helps define and frame! 

Cheers all, 


Friday, October 11, 2013

Reflecting on goals, "empties" and being a smart beauty consumer

Hi all, 

today, I was thinking about how much this blog helps me to make better beauty-related choices. Since I know that I'm committed to finishing every product I buy, I put more effort into choosing a good product in the first place. I don't let the sales be my guide - which may, on the surface seem like a more costly route to take. However, I don't then realize I've bought a dud and then go out and buy something else when I've only used half of the original product. I tend to be excited to use the things I've purchased because I've heard good things about them online. 
Even taking this approach I'll often finish something and think "that was fine, but I'm still curious to see if there's something better". Many shampoos, body washes, conditioners and body butters leave me feeling like this. Other things that I try I love and become committed to. Today I finished another tube of La Roche Posay Hydraphase Intense Legere moisturizer for the face. I am now on to my third tube and the love remains! Here's a pic:

Hydraphase Intense Light
My goal when I started this blog with Deema was to be a conscious and discerning beauty consumer. I aim to be deliberate with my beauty purchases. Lipsticks and eye shadows are, for most people, frivolous items. And they are for me too, I suppose. That said, there's no denying that at this point I have spent a lot of time thinking about beauty products, researching them, testing them out on myself (and my friends!) and while they are still light-hearted items, I'm far from apathetic about the whole shebang. There's something endlessly fascinating about beauty products, no? I still get a rush when I buy a product I'm excited to try. So, I guess the goal - really - is to harness that excitement and make it as deliberate and reflective as I can while balancing it with the natural levity inherent in beauty products. They're fun! They're exciting! 

Oh, and I'm living on a student budget - so making expensive beauty purchases count is pretty awesome, too



Thursday, October 3, 2013

Bourjois Healthy Mix Gel Serum Foundation - a delight!

Hello all, 

here with a rather exciting product for you, today! I've finished up my Bourjois Healthy Mix Gel Serum Foundation. I haven't finished a foundation in agessss (looking at you Makeup Forever HD foundation). This one was delightful and I have already repurchased. It is $27 at Shoppers Drug Mart. My shade is 52, and for reference I am an NW20 in MAC shades. Here is an image:

This was a great product for my combination skin. I don't have serious discolouration going on, but I do have some: a bit of redness around my nose, chin and forehead from breakouts over the years, and rosy cheeks. Healthy Mix Gel Serum provided light, natural coverage for these areas which I would top up with a concealer (if I felt like it, let's be serious). It evened out my complexion nicely and provided an excellent base for blush and bronzer. In term of lasting power, this was not its "forte". I set it regularly with a Rimmel Stay Matte powder (stay tuned for a review of that excellent product - I will finish it soon) and the combo would last me for 6-8 hours. That said, and perhaps because of that, this product feels lovely on the skin. It was not sticky or drying or heavy.  It has a pleasant scent and never broke me out, even in the hot, humid days of summer. 

Deema's review of the product is here.

Cheers all!