Friday, December 28, 2012

The Last Empties Post of 2012

Wooooah! Is it really the end of 2012? Time flies by faster and faster each year. It feels like it was just yesterday I was writing my first empties post of the year. Alas, here we are reading about the last empties post of 2012!


Starting off hair schtuff:
Kiehl's Olive Fruit Oil Nourishing Shampoo* smells lovely - light, sort of creamy - but that's all that I love about this shampoo. It makes my hair decently soft and tangle free but my scalp a dry, flaky mess.

I still love The Body Shop's Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter and I have another backup of it in my drawers. But, I think I'll try Essential's Ultra Honey Hair Mask at the start of 2013, just cause y'know?

The Alba Botanica Natural Hawaiian Shampoo in Colourific Plumeria is my favourite shampoo ever. Everyone has a signature scent and then there are the few that have a signature hair scent. I used to be v
ery wishy-washy about my hair and used what ever smelled decent but now I strictly use this. The SLS-free shampoo foams up like regular shampoos but leaves my hair even softer and scalp not as dry nor itchy. It's THE shampoo for me!

The TRESemm
é Thermal Creations Heat Tamer Spray has been sitting on my bathroom counter for years. There's actually two of them but one is missing, obviously. I hardly use this when curling or flat ironing my hair but when I do I don't find this makes a difference. Hair serums/oils do a better job of protecting, providing shine, and taming frizz.


Lots of cleansers:
My first forray into the cleansing oil was with the shu uemura Cleansing Beauty Oil Premium A/O Advanced Formula. It took me two full years to finish and it wouldn't have taken so long if I didn't hate it so much.
 It smells awful and doesn't rinse off completely. The Kose Softymo Deep Cleansing Oil is much more satisfying, that is all.

NIP + FAB Clean Fix Wipes are surprisingly good! It doesn't remove waterproof mascara but regular eyeshadow is fine. Though I must say it has stung my eyes on a few occasions but lucky not my face.

Marcelle Hydra-C Facial Exfoliating Gel is the first Marcelle product I have come to dislike. It's not a bad exfoliator but it's just too gentle for my liking. There's much more gel than exfoliating beads but this makes it great for everyday use if you have normal skin. 

L'Oreal Youth Code Foaming Gel Cleanser, Clearasil Rapid Action Face Wash, 
Caudalíe Instant Foaming Cleanser, and Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser - these cleansers are "meh". I mainly used the L'Oreal and Clearasil cleansers to wash face clothes and makeup brushes. The Kiehl's cleanser is gentle and non-drying which is great but the Caudalíe foaming cleanser is the exact opposite. 


Onto the body:
This can of h2o+ Oasis Mist is fairly old. It served its purpose well and a repurchase is likely in the future. The mist is much finer than the Avène Thermal Spring Water or Evian facial spray. Also, the h20 didn't die out 3/4s into the can like the Avène spray did.
 Though, the packaging has changed so maybe I won't like it the second time around. 

Yes, that is TWO Cake Milk Made Velveteen Hand Cremes that you're seeing. It's tricky to finish hand cream quickly because I rotate four tubes at a time. I keep one at my desk, one at my bedside table, one in my car, and another in the washroom. Milk Made sinks in quickly without that icky, greasy look and feel in the winter. However, it's a bit heavy for the summer. I still highly recommend it and I've gifted it to many friends over the years!

Lush's The Jilted Elf Shower Jelly didn't make a return this year for Lush's holiday collection but this tub is from 2011. The scent is very warm and spicy, not something I go for normally, but it's perfect for the holiday season. If Lush had made it into a shower gel instead of a jelly, I would have finished it sooner. The Jell-O like soap is too flimsy in the shower and even when frozen it won't be solid like a bar of soap. Miranda on the other hand   is perfect and a permanent product. The soap doubles up as an exfoliator and smells fruity but not too sweet.

eos Smooth Sphere Lip Balm has been talked about enough and Kiehl's Creme de Corps as well. There's too much hype surrounding both items. The lip balm is too light and doesn't hydrate the lips for very long and the body lotion is too heavy. It certainly moisturizes the skin but at the cost of greasy feeling skin.


Samples & Sheet Masks:
My Beauty Diary Sheet Masks (count: 4) and samples packets (count: 11).

And now it is time for the BIG round up combining all the empties counts throughout this year:
Jumbo = 3 (1 jumbo = 2 full size) = 6
Full size = 38
Deluxe Samples/Travel Sizes = 31 (5 deluxe samples = 1 full size) = 6.2
Samples = 44 (10 samples = 1 full size) = 4.4
Masks = 20 (10 = 1 full size) = 2
Tossed = 9

Total? A million! Okay, maybe not a million but 56.6 isn't as impressive... I've changed how I calculate deluxe samples and sample packets so my total is less than last year's but whatever. The important thing is that I've emptied a lot and I will continue to do so in 2013!

How about you? Were you an emptying machine this year? Have any plans to be one in 2013?

Friday, October 5, 2012

I'm Feeling Empty - Part 6

The past few months have been all about emptying. Seeing my stash reduce greatly encouraged me to keep going and now I'm on a roll. But before I empty more, I want to share my stash of empties so far.  

HadaLabo AHA + BHA Cleanser, Lush Lemony Flutter, eos Everyday Hand Lotion:
These three products are linked to their full reviews. In short, they are all products I recommend and plan to/have repurchase(d). In fact, I am on my second tube of the HadaLabo cleanser and fourth pebble of the eos lotion. 


Murad Clarifying Mask, Lush Ayesha Mask*, Skinfood Gold Kiwi Hydrating Mask (x2), My Beauty Diary (x3):
Out of these four masks, I highly recommend the Murad and Lush mask. The worst hydrating mask I have ever tried has got to be the Skinfood mask. It is highly fragranced and it hardly hydrates the skin! You'd be better off using a My Beauty Diary mask which you've probably heard about before already. Anyway, you can expect a review on the Murad Clarifying Mask soon as it has reached holy grail status! Ayesha is also a clarifying mask but results aren't as impressive as Murad's. It is still a very good mask with great, natural ingredients though.


Simple Cleansing Facial WipesLush Dirty Shaving Cream, Sephora Collection Instant MoisturizerKiehl's Creme de Corps (x2), Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser:
My skincare and body care sample stash is growing quicker than I can use it up but that's not stopping me from trying to get through it all. Luckily, none of these samples have impressed me enough to purchase the full sizes so I won't be stocking up on anything new or draining my funds anytime soon. There are cheaper alternatives to all of these samples which I like more. 


Etude House Fresh Cherry Tint, Fresh Sugar Lip TreatmentLaura Mercier Invisible Loose Setting Powder:
I have been aiming to use up at least one makeup product per empties post and this time I've got two. (But let's ignore the fact that they're merely samples though...)
The Etude tint has a lovely texture that isn't watery but almost mousse-like. If Etude had a wider range of shades, I'd be happy to try those out as I am swamped in bright lip products.  Anyway, I
 finally see why so many lip balm addicts like the Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment. The sugary lemon scented lip balm isn't waxy nor too emollient. The balm is thin but it coats the lips enough for instant lip gratification. The price keeps me from purchasing a full size but it's a nice change from my holy grail Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm.


Just Bee N
atural Bee Quenched Moisturizing Shampoo in Sparkling Pom, Shiseido Tsubaki Conditioner:
Eeeep! I love the milk bottle-ish packaging for the Just Bee Natural shampoo. This was one of the first sulfate, phosphate, and paraben-free shampoos that I ever tried and it's good enough to recommend. It lathers as good as generic shampoo does but isn't stripping.
I reviewed the whole Tsubaki white label line two years ago and my thoughts are still the same. This hair care line suits damaged hair best. Got healthy hair? Look elsewhere as this will be too rich.


Method Hand Soap (x3):
Many people swear by Bath and Body Works Anti-bacterial soaps but I think they're overrated and over-fragranced. Method on the other hand makes fantastically scented soaps without the headache inducing perfumes. Also, Method formulates their soaps without triclosan which is a big plus to me. If you're at the supermarket looking for a simple yet unique to the supermarket hand soap, be sure to check out Method. My fave scents? Fresh Currant and Juicy Pear.


And there we have it, another gratifying round of empties! Have you finished anything lately? Maybe you're feeling inspired to now :)

*Product was provided by PR/Company. All opinions and thoughts expressed are my own.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

I've Got Mail - July/August 2012

It's the last day of August and of course I'm drowning my sorrows in online shopping. You really can't blame me.. My summer will officially come to a close (until next year) when fall semester starts next week. Throughout this summer, I didn't shop online too much. Perhaps my subconscious knew there were chances my orders could melt during transit so I held off until the weather cooled down. I bet mail will come flooding right in when fall and winter kick in.

Anyway, so the most troublesome order I made this summer was for the Caudalíe Our Favorites Set.


If you're interested in this particular set, I'm sorry to say it is no longer available. However, there is a newer Our Favorites set but for $35 (instead of the original $28) and it includes an exfoliator instead of a lip balm. The hand cream in the new set is also smaller compared to one in the older set. Both the old and new sets were and are hard to find in stores so there's nothing left but to resort to ordering online. However, I do not recommend Sephora's Canadian website because there are still too many glitches left unfixed.

The last and prettiest package to come in the mail is the STEAMCREAM tin in Lila.
asos had a few STEAMCREAM tins on sale in July and I didn't hesitate to order one. The brand has been on my radar for a long time but I was never fond of the price and the fact that it's hard to track down in stores. Good thing asos has free shipping and discount codes frequently.

So that's all the pretty mail I got this summer. How about you? Did you receive anything special this summer? 

Monday, August 27, 2012

What's In My Travel Makeup Bag

I love to travel but it isn't often that I get to. The last time I left Vancouver, on an airplane, was when I went to Oahu in 2009. Since then, I have only taken a handful of overnight trips to Seattle. Suffice to say, I haven't found the need for a travel cosmetic bag to hold all of my makeup and skincare. However, this recently changed when Mr. Waffle and I went on a 4-day trip to Seattle in July.

Truthfully, this post is mainly to showcase my favourite travelling cosmetic bag that I recently purchased: the limited edition and now-discontinued tokidoki Passport Medium Hanging Travel Bag.


Not only is this travel bag extremely cute but it's very well made too; sturdy and holds a lot. In fact, the bag is so spacious that it could hold all of my basics AND 6 sheet masks. If there were ever to be another tokidoki travel bag like this one, I'd snatch it right up.

So what would actually go into this too cute of a travel cosmetic bag?

All of that ^ of course.

For skincare, the basic necessities would be: Naive Facial Cleansing Foam (any non-drying facial cleanser will do), Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes, 100% Pure Argan Oil Hydration, Kiehl's Ultra Facial Moisturizer*, Creamy Eye Treatment*, and Blemish Control Daily Skin-Clearing Cream Treatment*, Caudalíe Lip Conditioner, and a trusty tube of Lucas Papaw Ointment. Oh, and a tube of Bioré Aqua Rich Watery Mousse Sunscreen!

For makeup, I would bring: Stila Stay All Day 10-in-1 HD Beauty Balm*, NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer, Stila Set & Correct Baked Powder Trio in The Correctors*, Illamasqua Powder Blush in Lover and Cream Blusher in Rude, MAC Fix+, dejavu Lash Knockout, and Sonia Kashuk Eyelash Curler.

When it comes to travelling, I believe in less makeup and more skincare. Travelling can wreak havoc on my skin and because of that, I always bring what I use on a daily basis and the "just in case of emergencies/fix it" products. Makeup won't fix a sudden rash or inflamed cheeks but skincare can. Plus, I can't be bothered with eyeshadows during my vacation or the brushes I'd need to bring to apply it all. 

What does your travel makeup bag look like and/or what would you put in it?

Products marked with * were provided by PR/company for review consideration. 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Review: Lush Lemony Flutter

Lush is the store you either run away from or into, nose first. Admittedly, it took quite a few visits for me to open up to the brand. In fact, it was only last year that I discovered my love for their bath bombs and soaps. In the short time that I have gotten to know the brand, I have also enabled some people into some golden purchases. One of my favourite Lush products to date is the Lush Lemony Flutter; "a lemony, buttery cuticle cream".

Lush Lemony Flutter

Truth be told, my nails and cuticles weren't a top priority until they met Lemony Flutter. I would use a cuticle oil occasionally but none of them really helped. Lemony Flutter helps, a lot. The thick, buttery cuticle cream melts into the skin and softens cuticles like no other. Also, the cuticle cream smells so delightful - it has a zesty kick to it but also has a soft fluttery side, almost like lemon cake batter but less buttery.

Pricing ($14.95 CAD) may seem a bit high for a cuticle butter but it can be used for multiple purposes such as healing dry, cracked heels or elbows. A little black tub lasts quite a long time too. I expect a person would only need two tubs to last a year if they used it as excessively as I do. Unfortunately, the ingredients won't suit everyone. The cuticle cream contains parabens and a few different oils (lavender, lemon, castor, avocado, just to name a few). 

Bonus Tip:
Use Lemony Flutter as a de-stainer! One time I stained my nails with a red polish (didn't use a protective base coat, tsk tsk!) but after applying the cuticle cream three nights in a row, my nails became surprisingly less stained and much whiter than before.

Bottom Line:
I highly recommend Lush Lemony Flutter. The buttery, lemony cuticle cream will turn dry cuticles into soft, happy cuticles with a with a bonus de-staining effect. 



Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Just How Brilliant is Lush Cosmetics Emotional Brilliance?

The answer to today's blog title and post is very. Emotional Brilliance is very brilliant.
If you want to see for yourself, head on over to your local Lush store on July 21st (this Saturday!!) or any time after to find out for yourself!

The new makeup range will include lip colours, eyeliners, and eyeshadows. Also in the range is a mascara, translucent powder, and two new skin tints.


The concept behind Lush's new makeup line is quite different than most but instead of spoiling it for everyone, I 
urge you to go to Lush this Saturday to learn all about it and play the game to find your Strength or WeaknessSubconscious Needs, and Talent!

Monday, July 9, 2012

I'm Feeling Empty - Part 5

Do you know what time it is? It's empties time, fool! And this time there's a truck load of tossed items too. Despite finishing a bunch of the "good stuff", all of the "bad stuff" has resisted emptying. Thus, I was forced to toss a pile of crap in Round 5.




Full Size: 9
Deluxe/Travel Size: 8
Samples: 15
Sheet Masks: 10
Tossed: 7

Products I Hate(d) Emptying but Will Repurchase:

Kate Somerville ExfoliKate (reviewed here), Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm in Lemon (reviewed here), Bison Wakilala Bright Up! Essence (reviewed here), Lush Angel's Delight soap, Lush Lemony Flutter (review to come), Lush Fresh Face Mask in Cupcake, Caudalíe Premieres Vendanges Moisturizing Cream (definitely purchasing the full size!).  

Everything else? Nothing worth mentioning or re-mentioning, especially the items being tossed. Tossed items are either a) old or b) old and crappy. The Mentholatum Acnes Tinted UV Milk was actually quite nice but I turned too dark for it after I tanned last year. Since then, the UV Milk hasn't seen any love and the product turned sour to punish me.

Honestly, this round of empties felt quite blah. It brings me no joy to empty truly amazing products and tossing things I spent hard earned cash on. I also feel like my emptying mojo is depleting again... Help! Tell me what you've emptied recently! 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

I've Got Mail - May & June 2012

Along with a crappy letter the credit card company sent me alerting me my card was e-stolen, I received some pretty packages in May and June.

The SO sent a package after I learnt we could use my Sephora gift cards on the Sephora US sit. I kindly made an order for a face wash for the SO in March but added a little something, something for myself. There's also a little something, something from Ulta and BurnOut too!

From Sephora: NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Alaska

From Ulta: Real Techniques Expert, Setting, and Shading Brush

From BurnOut: Eco-Senstive Clean and Clear Sunscreen SPF 32

More Real Techniques brushes... In my defense, the RT brushes were buy-one-get-one 50% off. Who could resist the new Expert Face Brush and Setting Brush? Not me of course. The sunscreen speaks for it self. It's summer time & we all need to be smothering on the SPF. BurnOut made it onto EWG's Top Sunscreen list and Jenny of My Funny Valentine wrote a very convincing review on it. 

Lastly, we have some some freebies/samples to cancel out some of the spending!

Target Beauty Bag
Sephora + Ulta samples

I always sign up for the Target Beauty Bag and have it sent to the SO's address. Honestly, I am more interested in the bags than the samples inside. This is the third bag I have successfully signed up for and received and it's by far the best -perfect for summer!

From Sephora: NARS Pure Radiant TM in St. Moritz and Hourglass No 28 Primer Serum.  Wonderful samples. Wonderful products! They're both going to make killer dents in my wallet when the time comes to (re)purchasing them. 

From Ulta: DDF Protective Eye Cream SPF15+.
This sample is really disappointing. The expiration date on the tube says 11/11. As in November 2011? Expired samples are unacceptable in my books and I'll be throwing this out just as a precaution. My under eye area has been extra sensitive lately and I am not willing to take any chances.

And that's a wrap! It feels so nice to get packages again. Have you received anything lately?

Friday, June 22, 2012

Review: Rosette Hello Kitty Apple Gommage

Peeling gels aren't very popular outside of Asia. It's a treat to find a Western brand that makes one but they're usually overpriced unlike the Asian counterparts. Also, the brands aren't always reliable. Most of the ones I've found are sold at mall kiosks.. 'Nuff said. If peeling gels ever do make it big in the Western hemisphere, I'll try to act surprised. Anyway, I've tried a few peeling gels before but the ever so popular CURE remains my favorite. Skinfood's Pinepple Peeling Gel is also nice but the worst would have to be the Rosette Hello Kitty Apple Gommage, which I am reviewing today.

To start - I blame Rosette's Hello Kitty Apple Gommage for ruining my skin and more importantly, the area under my eyes. The first time I tried the peeling gel, my face turned red and itched like mad. Weeks later, I tried it again but this time I accidentally applied it too close to my under eye area and since then, I have been less than happy. It has been nearly two months and my under eye has not recovered. There's constant redness, dryness, flaking, and wrinkles (at 21!!) involved. This does not bode well for my makeup application. And if you thought I couldn't get any stupider or things couldn't get any worse, I tried the peeling gel for a third time! The third time involved very inflamed, itchy cheeks that didn't recover for days. No amount of concealer could hide the atrocious reaction my skin had to this peeling gel. 

Case and point: Do not use this on your face.

Another thing I hate is the scent. This peeling smells like a Granny Smith apple on the brink of rotting. It'll start out fresh and delicious but quickly degrade into a rotting apple mess. Though, this is only my interpretation of the scent. I haven't seen any other review that highlights the nastiness.

Bottom Line:
Skip the Rosette Hello Kitty Apple Gommage! It may come cheap (~$9USD) but there are other brands in the same price range. This is not worth overseas shipping rates & wait time nor is it worth the facial risks.

Side note:
I do blame myself for applying the peeling gel too close to my eyes but my skin is hardly sensitive. This stuff is hazardous, look elsewhere, I beg of you!

Monday, June 11, 2012

This or That: 100% Pure Argan Oil Hydration vs. Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration Facial Moisturizer

Finding a good daytime facial moisturizer is tough. For awhile now, I have been looking for one that provides a minimum of SPF 30 sun protection, hydrates but doesn't grease me up by noon, and comes in fuss-free packaging. I would also prefer it if the moisturizer played along nicely with my foundation. Then waltz in a wonderful pair - 100% Pure's Argan Oil Hydration Facial Moisturizer with SPF 30 and Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration with SPF 20. But what it all boils down to is which one I'll be repurchasing when the time comes!

100% Pure Argan Oil Hydration & Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration Facial Moisturizer

Honestly, I thought the decision would be easy to make but just because Argan Oil Hydration has SPF 30, it doesn't bump itself to the top of the list. For starters, it HATES other products such as primer (all and any) and foundation. It enjoys pilling and driving me insane when I use it under or atop of such products. Also, it does get a wee bit greasy throughout the day, more so than the Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration.

While 100% Pure's Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration doesn't turn greasy quick or a lot, it also doesn't hydrate enough. I often add an extra layer of it to compensate for the lack of hydration. What bothers me most though, is the sun protection which is only SPF 20. I need a minimum of SPF 30! On the bright side, Organic Pomegranate does not pill under or above makeup.


Both moisturizers are practically at a tie. They both share the same fuss-free, glass bottle packaging with a perfect and even dispensing pump. I recommend and will repurchase both! For the days that I don't wear makeup, I will use Argan Oil Hydration and Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration for the days I do. My BB cream has SPF 42 so I am more than protected, in the end. Dry, dehydrated skin may enjoy Argan Oil Hydration most but the Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration is suitable for all skin types. And although both contain SPF, neither leave a white cast!

If you're interested in both daily moisturizers, it's a greater value to buy the SPF Skincare Duo on 100% Pure's website and/or select e-tailers. Alone, each moisturizer cost CAD $34/USD $26; fair price in my opinion.

100% Pure Argan Oil Hydration:
Active Ingredients: 24.8 % Zinc Oxide
Inactive Ingredients: Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice1, Rgania Spinosa Kernel (Argan) Oil, Rosa Canina Seed (Rosehip Oil) Extract, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Extracts of: Euphorbia Cerifera Cera (Candelilla Wax), Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf2, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf, Origanum Vulgar (Oregano), Thymus Vulgaris (Thyme), Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit Seed) Seed, Hydrastis Canadensis (Goldenseal), Lonicera Caprifolium (Japanese Honeysuckle) and Cinnamomum Zeylanicum Bark (Cinnamon)

100% Pure Organic Pomegranate Antioxidant Hyrdation:
Active Ingredients: 15% Titanium Dioxide 10% Zinc Oxide
Inactive Ingredients: Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract (Aloe Juice)1, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Beeswax, Extracts of Organic Camelia Sinensis Leaf (White Tea) 2, Rosmarinus Officinalis Leaf (Rosemary), Origanum Vulgar Leaf (Oregano),Thymus Vulgaris Flower/Leaf (Thyme), Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed, Hydrastis Canadensis (Goldenseal) and Cinnamomum Zeylanicum Bark (Cinnamon)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Ban: It's Over! Or Is It?

Oh The Ban... Can you believe it's over? I can't. Since April 30th, I have been relieved of my own torture and soon after, I threw myself back in the ring. But how did I do the first time around? Well, I failed but not miserably (or so I think).

The Culprits:
Lip Balm #1 in: Pear 
Essence You Rock! Lipstain(s) in: Let Me In Rose, Your Pink Is On Fire

On a technicality, I didn't forbid myself from purchasing lip stains. The only exceptions I spoke of were tinted lip balms. However, because I culled my stash of lip stains in March and brought my stash to a count of zero, I should be making an exception. 

And on another technicality, the Kiehl's lip balms was practically free! When I made a purchase at Kiehl's Metrotown a couple of months back, I was given $15 off my purchase which basically covered the cost of the lip balm... I would like to count that as a pass but again, I'll let the readers decide!

Anyhow, The Ban isn't actually over; it has simply been revised. So starting today (June 6th, 2012), I will not purchase another lip balm, lip gloss, body lotions, washes, and hand creams until September 1st, 2012. Looking back at what is essentially The Ban: Part I, I now see how lenient I was with myself. Too lenient. Even though I found it difficult to resist buying more lip balms, I stopped myself with the knowledge that I was wasting money.  Could I possible use up all 10 lip balms with SPF before they expire in 2013? No - which means I would end up tossing away quite a few. Hence, a waste of money! Anyway, in order to achieve a better outcome, I must be more strict with my purchases but now to the point I fall into deep depression. The trouble is balance but we'll get to that later.

Tell me, how are/have your bans gone? Say good, say good!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Back to Blogging + Loving Lately

We're half way into the year now and I have barely blogged. I think we can all agree that it's high time I get back to it! But first some basic Q&A to explain where and what I've been up to:

1. Where have I been?
Answer: Everywhere but my happy place. Along with school and the odd jobs here and there, I have spent almost every waking hour tending to family affairs. There is a lot of sad stuff involved and because I don't want to sadden anyone, I won't get into it! Don't worry though, the storm has passed and all that is left is the clean up.

2. What reviews are to come?
I made a list of the top priority posts which involve skincare (go figure), blush (Illamasqua!!), and Lush. Hey! That rhymed :)

3. When is that aforementioned giveaway going to happen?
Soooon; hopefully by July. Aim for Canada day or is that too corny?


4. What about The Ban?
Will be writing up my final words about it next. It deserves a post of its own!

Any other questions? Ask away in the comments!

Onto what I've been "Loving Lately"....


theBalm makes great makeup and they've recently wondered into the realms of skincare. I bought one of their skincare sets at Marshall's a few months back and only started testing it recently. The Brazil Nut Eye Perfection Gel is my new favorite eye moisturizer. I may or may not review this but if you have an insanely dry under-eye area like me, you'll LOVE this stuff.
The Apple AHA Daily Face Moisturizer is nice too - keeps my face smooth and hydrated during the day. I am not fond of the scent though.


Recently started using my Rock & Republic blushes again... Man are these blushes ever pigmented! R&R should forget making jeans and focus on making blushes. They're so good, it's a shame the cosmetics line was discontinued.


The SO & I share a matching scent; Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue. (But of course, he wears Light Blue Pour Homme.) We both really like it but me more than him.
Back when Sephora had their 15% off (in March?), I had purchased the 50ml size but promptly returned it when I came across a better valued gift set at The Bay. The gift set which included a 100ml bottle + bonus 25ml cost $108 but is valued at $167. However, I only paid a little less than $150 because I had a 20% off discount that day.
When it comes to select beauty & perfume brands, I like to purchase them at The Bay now due to the amount of discounts they send to my mom & I. Thus, Sephora is slowly losing it's place in my heart... Oh well, as long as I can get my makeup somewhere, right?

Anyway, I apologize for being absent but I am back! There are loads of edited posts so I have no excuses to be away any longer!

Saturday, April 14, 2012


Friday, March 30, 2012

I've Got Mail - March 2012

Long story short, I am no longer visiting the SO in April. Instead, he will visiting me again in July. He is coming to meet my parent's for the first time... It is going to be so much fun /sarcasm and [insert immense dread here]. And since I am no longer visiting the SO, he mailed out my birthday present instead. (He didn't think I could wait until July to receive my present. He was right.)

Kate Somerville Ultimate ExfoliKate Kit / MAC 130 & Prep + Prime Transparent Finishing Powder / Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Dixie / Paul & Joe Blusher Stick in 003 Minou / Milani Illuminating Face Powder in Amber Nectar & Hermosa Rose

I know, I know. Don't stone me! A luxury size Exfoli-Kate? Illamasqua blush? Paul & Joe kitty blush? The Milani rose powders? *Spoiled*

Note for my fellow Canadian beauty lovers - I tried tracking down the Milani powders for us but no luck. After visiting my local Sears and a few Superstores I have come to the fine conclusion that our stores are just slow. Think about it - we got a few of those much loved baked blushes didn't we? We'll have these illuminators in no time... I just know it!

From Liz, the Beauty Reductionista -

CLEAN Provence & Original & Simply Soap / ONE Shea Butter Lip Balm

She's also a fellow March baby! March babies are awesome, end of story! Oh, and we also smell the best ;P

To top it all off, some things from Sasa -

Hada Labo AHA + BHA Facial Cleanser / Rosette Hello Kitty Apple Gommage / Essential Rich Premier Ultra Honey Hair Mask / Mentholatum Hand Veil

I'm almost out of my favourite cleanser so when Sasa happened to have another free shipping, I had an order ASAP. I was really surprised with how fast this order shipped. It processed in 2 days and arrived 7 days later. Maybe it was a stroke of birthday month luck but shipping is normally never this quick.

Overall, my happiness rating for March is a solid 8 out of 10. It would be a full 10 out of 10 but I was drowning in presentations and papers this month. There was also the case of the cake-less birthday dinner.. but all in all, March was a good month. Wouldn't you agree?

Monday, March 26, 2012

I'm Feeling Empty - Part 4

Ever since 2012 started, emptying has been a quick process. There was one week where I managed to empty four full sized body products at the same time. This could possibly be my best record so far. And now that it's a quarter way into the new year, it's time for another epic empties post!


My Beauty Diary Sheet Masks - My new rule is that every 10 sheet masks will count as one full size product. The count today? 10.

Hada Labo SHA Facial Wash - I still really, really love this cleanser and I am sad to see it go. However, the AHA + BHA cleanser is much more effective so I'll be repurchasing that one more over this one.

Marcelle Hydra-C 24H Energizing Hydrating Gel - If you haven't read my review on this fantastic gel moisturizer yet, do it now. It will be the perfect moisturizer during the Spring and Summer. It's refreshing, lightweight and cheaper than my old HG - Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief!

Lip Care

100% Natural Lip Roll-On Coconut* - This isn't actually emptied but I'm tossing it on account of it is a strange lip oil?? I feel nostalgic each time I use the roll on but the actual oil inside isn't moisturizing and rather greasy.

Sweet Leaf Bath Co. Pomegranate Lip Balm* - Also unfinished but I'm tossing it out. My lips used to love beeswax-based lip balms but not so much anymore.

Nivea Milk & Honey Lip Balm - The only lip balm that is actually emptied! I quite like this lip balm and when I thought I had lost it, I bought another tube of it. Soon after, I found the first tube under my car seat. It's cheap and it works, what else can I say?

Hair Care

Suave Professionals Dry Shampoo Spray - This is my second can of Suave's dry shampoo and while I don't use it often, it seems to run out very quickly. It's cheap, it works, I like the scent but it is not available in Canada as far as I can tell. I bought four back ups the last time I crossed the border.

Korres Hair & Scalp Scrub - Discontinued but I'm not mad or sad about it. This stuff sucked big time.

Dove Intensive Repair Conditioner - Average conditioner, not much to say about it. It weighs down my hair if I use it too often and it doesn't fight the frizz too well.

The Body Shop Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter - I love this stuff to death! It's the best deep conditioner/hair treatment I have used to date. It's lighter than most conditioners but I still get that deep hydration my hair craves. It fights the frizz, the scent isn't too salon-ish.

Body Care

The Body Shop Earth Lovers Apricot & Basil Shower Gel - I thought I liked the smell of Apricot & Basil until half way through the first bottle, I realized I don't. And by first bottle, I mean that it's the first of three to go.

Lush Honey I Washed the Kids - "Mmmmm" is all I can ever say when I smell Honey I Washed the Kids. The scent doesn't last long but it's enough to make me want to eat my own arm off.

Soap & Glory Scrub 'Em and Leave 'Em - UGH. Have I mentioned how mad I am that Soap & Glory prices were raised? I have? Well I'm still pissed. For $20+, I say pass on this body exfoliator. It melts quicker than I can spread the stuff over my body. Between Scrub 'Em and Leave 'Em and Scrub, Actually, the latter is much more worthwhile. It works and the squeeze tube packaging is easier to handle in the shower.

eos Refresh Hand & Body Lotion - I will forever hate the smell of this lotion but forever love the formula. If you've ever tried the hand lotion, they're exactly the same. As I hand lotion, I own and use better but as a body lotion, it's great for the warmer seasons. The lotion delivers the perfect amount of hydration without any residue. It spreads easily and it's also fast-absorbing. Though, the SO whom has acute dermatitis can't use this lotion. Each time he's used it, he break out in itchy hives.

Deluxe Samples

Elizabeth Grant Biocollasis Complex Gentle Cleanser - When Luxe Box was still called Loose Button, I jumped on the subscription band wagon. In my box was this cleanser. The cleanser has a thin, fluid consistency similar to the Korres White Tea fluid cleanser. However, this cleanser turns into a foamy, drying mess. Although the cleanser is touted to re-balance the skin's natural pH, it does the opposite for me. Do not recommend.

Avène  - No idea what this stuff is called but it's one of Avène's makeup removing lotions but with a gel texture. I hate it.

Sonia Kashuk Eye Makeup Remover - Love, love, love! To be fair, I will officially review this eye makeup remover when Canada opens its first Target.

Korres Vitamin E Face Primer - No matter what moisturizer I used underneath, this primer would always pill. Instead of a smooth canvas, I ended up with little bits on my face and my foundation would look uneven and streaky.

One 'n Only Argan Oil - My hair dresser gave this oil treatment way back when my hair was damaged to no end. Of course, I forgot to use it until now and even with my healthier hair, I find this argan oil to be "meh". Dimethicone is the very first or second ingredient listed in the back while "argan oil" is further down. This probably explains the "meh" response my hair had.

Pond's Evening Sooth Wet Cleansing Towelettes - Surprisingly good but I won't be repurchasing. Pond's still tests on animals *sadface*

Murad Time Release Acne Cleanser - No good. NO GOOD!

Nexcare Acne Dressing - I am waiting for the perfect angry pimple to review the Nexcare Acne Dressing, I swear. These little sticker things are magnificent and everyone and anyone needs an emergency pack on hand!


Lastly, the samples I managed to plow through (not many) since January. I mainly focused on hair shampoo & conditioner packets and now it's time to go through some tinted moisturizers and foundation samples. I have many skincare samples to go through too but I'm happy with my regimen at the moment. Time to tally!

Full size: 10
Deluxe/Travel size: 8
Samples: 14
Tossed: 2

I will admit that there are moments where I want to simply throw out a product but when I can help it, I do my best and persevere and that is what makes emptying such a rewarding experience for me. But that's just me.

What about you? What do you like about emptying and how well have you been doing with your emptying challenge?

* Items marked with an asterisk were a part of a giveaway prize. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Upcoming: A Giveaway!

Finally, a giveaway! There is no particular reason for it besides the fact that I haven't had one since last year (the only one of the year, actually...)!

I am utterly and completely grateful for those of you that follow Makeup Kismet.
But I have a very important question to ask - how many of you are international-based (outside of Canada & the US)? When I read over the comments, I can tell that most of my readers are US or Canada-based. I haven't noticed a significant amount of comments from international readers but if there is a lot of you but more of the quiet lurker-type followers, I will make this a worldwide giveaway. The reason why I don't just do it anyway is because I don't want (an excessive amount of) people to end up following Makeup Kismet  just to enter the giveaway. I hope you guys understand!

Anyway, here's the tease-pleasing photo...

You can expect a lot whole more when the time comes ;)


Make-Up Kismet is a personal blog written and edited by myself. This blog was created to share my experiences with whom ever reads it.

All reviews posted are written by me and are my honest opinions. All products reviewed are purchased by me for personal and/or review purposes unless stated otherwise. Each person is different, as are our experiences. With that said, I cannot be held responsible for any unsatisfying reaction to a product I review or recommend.

Photos on this blog are either from Google, other Bloggers or, my own. I try to depict all products as accurately as possible. I may edit photos for this purpose.


Blog Template by