Monday, March 2, 2015

Avon #HiddenGem Campaign: Spring 2015 Brochure

If you happen to be flipping through the latest Avon Brochure make sure to check out my pick for the hidden gem campaign especially if you are looking for a good eyeliner!



For more info check out the Mega Effects Liquid Liner at Avon.ca

Avon Stress Relief Skin So Soft Aroma Therapy Bath & Body Collection

With the popularity of deliciously scented rejuvenating bath products Avon has healthfully combined the benefits of aroma therapy and skin softening ingredients to help melt stress away and lull you into relaxation. The new Stress Relief Collection includes the 48 hour moisturizer, body wash and foam bath so you can fill up the tub, light some candles and slip into the fluffy warm bubbles.


We have all had those long, strenuous days that make you want to retreat from the world and enjoy some alone time in your own little sanctuary. This collection has a soothing fragrance blend of eucalyptus, geranium and a touch of citrus to help calm your mind and body. You simply add 1-2 capfuls to running water and relax as the bubbles cleanse and alleviate tired muscles.  

The products smell very fresh and pleasant which creates the serenity of a tranquil spa in your own bathroom. In fact the intermingling of fragrance and botanicals actually reminds me of products used at the spa and the formula nourishes the skin while appeasing your senses. The foam bath retails for $9.99.


After a long, much needed bubble bath the 40 hour moisturizer provides luxurious hydration enriched with extracts and oils that leave skin velvety soft. The lotion has the same calming, natural scent as the foam bath and it puts me in the mood to get cozy under a warm blanket and enjoy the rest of the evening. It retails for $9.99.

You can find the collection at avon.ca or through independent sales representatives.

*Press samples featured

Friday, February 27, 2015

Rodan and Fields Redefine Macro Exfoliator Review

When developing a skincare routine aimed at achieving a healthy complexion it is important that your treatments and tools successfully battle the effects of sun damage, aging, blemishes and environmental assaults. According to Hollywood’s most sought after skin care guru Kate Somerville, the most effective anti-aging treatment used to keep celebrities looking youthful is exfoliation. For a gorgeous glow she recommends exfoliating twice a week.

Today I have a review on the Redefine Macro Exfoliator created by Rodan and Fields, the doctors who brought you Proactiv Solution. Recently this device was featured on The Doctors TV Show, in Oprah’s Magazine and was noted in a variety of publications for its effective results and elaborate LED screen. The Macro Exfoliator or Macro E for short, is the ultimate personalized hand-held exfoliation tool that sweeps away up to 5 million dead skin cells in just 5 minutes! It is clinically proven to visibly improve the texture of skin in the first use.



If you think skipping exfoliation is no big deal think again! By doing so you miss out on some fabulous benefits including:

*Detoxifying the skin
*Reduction of fine lines and wrinkles
*Reduction of sun damage
*Removal of bacteria
*Prevention of breakouts
*Brightening of the complexion
*Improved absorption of skincare products
*Increased circulation
*Reduction of unwanted pigmentation
*Reduction of enlarged pores
*Improvement in skin texture
*Decrease in the appearance of blackheads and whiteheads

The average cost of a professional microdermabrasion session at a spa or Dermatologist’s office can cost anywhere from $75-$200 and the treatments need to be continued routinely for optimal results. The Maco E is designed to be used just once per week in the privacy of your home and retails for $321.00 CAD. The device utilizes the same diamond head technology and gentle vacuuming as professional treatments for a pampering spa session that is quick, easy and convenient.  


What’s Included
The rechargeable Macro E is packaged in a great box with all the accessories you need to get you started on the road to healthier skin. The box includes:

*8 cooling gel capsules
*Charging base
*Ac adapter
*User guide/manual
*Cleaning brush
*Spare filter
*52 spare filter pads (aprox. 1 year's worth)
*Tweezers
*Spare rubber gaskets

Filter pads

Using the Device
When I received my Macro E it was set up and ready to go! Using the device is very simple, I begin by washing my face with a non-oil based cleanser and once dry I start the Doc Smart Mode which is pre-programmed to exfoliate your entire face, neck and chest at timed intervals. Holding the skin taut you glide the diamond tip along your face and as you do the gentle vacuuming blasts the crystals across the skin picking up dead cells and depositing them in the filter.


 The comprehensive LED screen shows you which part of your face to exfoliate and beeps when it is time to move onto the next area. There is also a timer at the bottom of the screen which displays the duration for each treatment area. You have the option of skipping sections or using the device in manual mode which lets you control the intensity and length of your program.


I like that the intensity can be adjusted in both Doc Smart and Manual Mode because my skin is prone to sensitivity with exfoliation. I am always very careful not to over exfoliate and with the Macro E I can shorten the program or use the device on a lower setting to coincide with my skin type. I also use very light pressure when moving the diamond tip over my skin which softens the exfoliation process and allows the device to do most of the work for me.  

I expected the exfoliation to feel quite intense but I was pleasantly surprised that it did not scratch or irritate the surface of my skin. The texture of the diamond crystals is very fine and as I glide the device along my face there is a gentle suction which is not painful or uncomfortable. I prefer to move the device from the outside-in as opposed to using it from the inside-out as seen in many demonstration videos. I find that this direction feels smoother, more natural and reduces tugging.

After completing a treatment I don't usually experience any redness or tenderness although these side effects are normal and will dissipate. I occasionally feel a slight tingling in some areas which tend to fade within a few minutes but I am very careful not to go over the same sections twice. When changing the filter I don't often find a large amount of visible cells but I do take good care of my skin and perform weekly facials so the amount of skin removed will vary by individual.


After program completion you pop the exfoliation tip out of the device, use the tweezers to remove the filter pad, clean the dead skin out and replace the pad for the next treatment. Follow up by applying one capsule of the cooling gel to your face and neck to alleviate any sensitivity and use a moisturizer if skin feels dry.

Although the neck and chest are some of the first places to show the signs of aging I don’t feel the need to focus on those areas yet so I often skip them. Occasionally I choose to apply a light, organic face cream or natural oil instead of the gel capsules but you can customize your treatment to work for you! I do not use other exfoliating devices or products the week I plan to use my Macro E to avoid over exfoliation and irritation.

Gel Capsules

The best time to use the Maco E is in the evening but if you do use it before heading out for the day it is recommended that you protect your skin by applying a broad spectrum sunscreen. I like to use it a few hours before bed because I prefer not to apply heavy makeup over freshly exfoliated skin. The morning after a session my face is smooth, supple and vibrant and my makeup looks even better, no primer required!

I think microdermabrasion is much more effective than using traditional gritty pastes and creams because some of them merely scratch the surface of skin without physically removing the layer of dead cells. The results from this treatment last much longer and if you do go for regular spa treatments owing this device may save you money in the long run.
.

The Macro E is now available in Canada for $321.00 with a 10% discount for preferred customers. If you would like more info on this amazing tool or to place orders contact Megan Denney at megandenney@aol.com Megan is very knowledgeable about this system and will happily answer all of your questions! To check out the Redefine Macro Exfoliator and other great products click HERE. Please note that upon checkout you will have to use the name (Megan Denney) to complete your order.

Rodan and Fields also offers the opportunity to join their team and become an entrepreneur with a 60 day money back guarantee. If you are interested in an exciting new business venture in the vast market of skincare more information can be found by clicking- HERE

Sources:
TheDoctorsTV.Com
SpasAbout.Com
MadisonBeauty.Com.Au
DocShop.Com

*Press samples featured: I do not receive commission from any purchases made via Rodan & Fields or through independent consultants. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Clarins Garden Escape Collection Review- Spring 2015

The spring collection by Clarins includes beautiful pigments for the lips, cheeks and eyes as well as nourishing oils and healthy botanicals to help undo the drying effects of winter.

Every so often I come across a palette that is so lovely I hesitate to dip my brush in to avoid disturbing the beautiful colors and the Garden Escape eye shadows are simply exquisite! Encased in Clarins signature red velvet pouch the intricately etched mirrored palette holds 6 long-lasting shades that are soft, earthy and elegant. Like most palettes I've used from this brand the shadows can be applied dry for light, neutral looks or wet for increased intensity and vividness. Paired with a good primer you are able to control the saturation and enhance the pigments although most are quite subtle for a delicate, sophisticated effect.



The silky mineral texture is soft, smooth and non-creasing with a satin, iridescent finish. The deeper shades are designed to compliment and contrast the fresh light pinks and pearly white and you can mix and match the shadows or pair them with other palettes for a variety of alluring spring looks.

I love the effect of blending the dark green into the pinks and taupe for a soft gradient of color and the silvery hue works nicely as a highlight to accentuate the eyes. The shadows contain subtle shimmer but nothing too glittery or distracting and the palette retails for $44.00.



The Instant Light Lip Comfort Oil Is available in two shades- Honey which is the one I have and Raspberry which has a slight berry tint. The nourishing formula is a combination of “makeup and skincare” with a cocktail of plant oils to soothe and enhance lips with beautiful shine. Fatty acids, rosemary extract, hazel seed oil, sunflower and organic jojoba protect from dehydration and environmental aggressors to keep lips luminous and healthy.


Although it does look like oil in the packaging the texture isn't slick, sticky or oily, in fact it feels more like a smooth lip gloss with a clear finish. I like the sweet scent and large applicator and though the texture does initially feel a tad thick once you purse your lips and distribute the formula it thins and evens out. The oils provide relief and moisture for dry, chapped skin but I usually have to reapply quite frequently for best results. The Lip Comfort oil retails for $23.00.

Clarins makes a few great treatments to help keep lips soft and supple and the Instant Light Lip Balm is another combination of makeup and skincare with a luscious formula that melts into skin to create a veil of luminous color. The pampering texture moisturizes, protects and soothes for “3D radiance.”


The balm smells deliciously sweet and is available in 6 sheer shades, the color I have is 02- a soft coral hue. The lightweight texture has a touch of shine for smooth comfortable wear and rich plant ingredients plumps and illuminates. Formulated with a natural peptide that encourages the synthesis of hyaluronic acid the balm provides optimal hydration for hours!

This is a great product to have when your lips are a bit chapped or dry because as the tint catches the light it makes them look healthier! The balms retails for $22.00.

Clarin's classic Perfect Shine Sheer Lipstick Collection gained two subtle new shades for spring fittingly named Coral Dahlia (seen below) and Rose Petal. The color may look bright and bold in the tube but it actually applies translucent with a shiny finish and a creamy texture.


The lipsticks are formulated to plump, hydrate and soften with mango, shea, vitamin E and plant extracts that help diminish free-radicals for long-lasting moisture. The lipsticks retail for $27.00 each. 

This collection can be found at select drugstores, department stores and at Clarins.Ca

*Press samples featured

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Aveeno Fresh Essentials Review

When I think of Aveeno what comes to mind is quality, reliability and hydration. This brand has been a staple in my household for years and since I love their leave-in hair conditioner and body lotions I was more than willing to test out the Fresh Essentials products.

The line includes the Daily Nourishing Moisturizer with SPF protection, the Daily Exfoliating Scrub and a Hydrating Night Cream. The products were created to combat factors that stress and negatively impact the skin such as environmental aggressors, poor diet, sun exposure hectic lifestyle and lack of sleep. All of these factors can deplete nourishment and hydration and nobody wants a dull, dry complexion.


Nourishing Moisturizer SPF 30 (retail price: $16.97-$19.99)
If you face the sun and the great outdoors without some sort of skin protection even in the winter when UV rays are still present then you may be quickening the aging process. Frequent exposure to UVA and UVB may cause premature wrinkles age spots and other unsightly blemishes. This moisturizer has a lightweight formula enriched with anti-oxidants and emollients to strengthen and hydrate.


When it comes to products with built in sunscreen there are two key components that I look for:

1. The cream has to have a non-sticky texture that does not leave behind a residue, feel thick or smell disgusting. Like the other two products the moisturizer smells light, sweet and natural which I love and it leaves my skin feeling silky without any stickiness or shine.

2. The cream must also work well under makeup without casting an unsightly white film over my face. The Fresh Essentials moisturizer applies wonderfully and layers harmoniously under foundation to keep my skin hydrated without making me look oily. This is definitely a great day cream and the vitamin enriched formula keeps skin feeling fresh and soft.

Daily Exfoliating Scrub (retail price: $9.97-$12.99)
As most of you know exfoliation can greatly improve your complexion by eradicating dead cells and revealing a whole new layer of fresh skin. I make it a weekly practice to buff away these cells so that my face looks bright and polished.


The Daily scrub is very creamy and the exfoliation beads made of coconut pulp are so fine that they do not cause irritation or feel excessively gritty against the skin. When I use the scrub it barely feels like I’m exfoliating (which is a good thing) and afterwards my skin feels renewed, soft and supple. The oil-free formula also contains antioxidants and extracts that remove pore clogging impurities to help fight breakouts.

Hydrating Night Cream (retail price $16.97-19.99)
One of the most important things I do before bed is apply my skincare and hydrate. Since the body heals during a good night’s sleep the added benefits of nutritive product absorption often equals a dewy, healthy complexion in the morning.


The night cream is my favorite of the three products because it provides an intense dose of oil-free moisture that lasts all evening! I love slathering on the rich, fragrant formula packed with vitamins and anti-oxidants and I don’t skimp on application. The cream pampers, softens and smooths my skin which makes it look like I just got a replenishing facial! I also use it under my foundation when I need to treat those annoying dry patches that look hideous under makeup. With no greasy residue and a hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic formula I definitely recommend the night cream if your skin needs some serious winter rescue. 

These products are available nationwide at food, drug and mass retailers. You can also check them out online by clicking HERE.


*Press samples featured

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Dessange Paris Oleo Miracle Collection

As I stepped into the cozy Arcadian Loft in downtown Toronto and glanced around at all the exciting new hair products the ambiance of France filled the room and nostalgic memories of my time in Paris came flooding back. To celebrate the launch of Dessange- a Parisian beauty favorite,  Loreal gracefully decked out the loft with Eiffel Towers, Moët champagne and a sweet table brimming with crème brulee, macaroons and chocolate éclairs. Aside from strolling around in dessert heaven I also learned about the trendsetting influence of stylist Jacques Dessange who played a major role in the fashion and beauty industry.






The house of Dessange was established in Paris on Champs-Elysées and I can tell you first hand that it is the perfect area to set up shop. Jacques introduced a beautiful range of natural, effortless hairstyles and his partnership with the Cannes Film Festival and bombshells like Brigitte Bardot, Meryl Streep and Jane Fonda set a new trend for everyday elegance and hair color. With over 400 salons in 47 countries it is about time these popular Parisian products debuted in Canada!


Today I am going to give you a sneak peak at just a few of the products that will be available exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart in March 2015. The Dessange Paris Oleo Miracle Collection includes the Replenishing Shampoo, Conditioner and Hair Oil.

This reparative collection is infused with nutrients from nature's more precious oils with notes of delicious orange, fresh gardenia petals and sandalwood. The line was created for women who cherish their flat irons, blow dryers, curls and volume but dislike dry, lacklustre tresses. The formula targets hair suffering from thermal, chemical and environmental damage and is enriched with three key elements: Argan Oil, Camellia Oil and Pracaxi Oil.

Pracaxi Oil is derived from the seeds of a tree that is harvested in South America and is widely used in the beauty practices of Brazilian women. The precious oil has a high concentration of Bethenic Acid which deeply penetrates the hair follicle to condition, nourish and smooth.

The shampoo retails for $12.99 and although it also contains oils it is formulated to be lightweight so that hair is not weighed down. It targets the effects of overprocessing and damage to enhance shine and thoroughly cleanse with a sweet, botanical scent.  


The conditioner is very rich and creamy and the texture helps coat each strand for easier detangling. It is designed to protect against environmental aggressors and enhance manageability, shine and vitality to restore dull, flat hair. It retails for $12.99.


The product I am most excited about is the Hair Oil! You only need a few drops to nourish dry strands without a greasy residue and I love applying hydrating oil after conditioning and before heat styling for extra protection. A quick application also helps tame unruly strands, treat damaged ends and smooth frizz and fly-aways. The oil is quite slick and glossy, similar to the texture of hair serum and it takes less than one full pump to dispense enough product to tame my long, thick hair. I avoid over applying and oiling too close to the roots but the formula boosts shine and makes hair look and feel healthier. It retails for $14.99.


The fragrance of the collection is very strong and quite different than the aromas I usually come across in hair products. Although I like it I recommend taking a whiff at the store to make sure you do as well. Since my hair frequently craves moisture I am definitely looking forward to testing the products further and undoing the harsh effects of winter. The other collections available are the Color Restore Collection for color treated hair and two collections designed specifically for blonde hair. The products hit shelves next month so be sure to check them out!

*Press samples featured 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Hydrate Dry Winter Skin With NeoStrata

When winter hits the wind is sharp and a blanket of frost seems to settle over the city. This is the time of year when skin often becomes dry, chapped and in need of some extra hydration. NeoStrata is a line that has successfully helped me battle the effects of winter to keep my skin radiant and protected! They offer a wonderful range of products infused with great ingredients that are suitable for many skin types.


Aqua Youth Filling Anti-Wrinkle Cream $46
Although I don’t have wrinkles or fine lines, this cream is also formulated for women who are looking for serious hydration! After cleansing at night or in the morning I apply a layer of cream prior to makeup application or before bed to keep my skin moisturized and soft.

Upon application there is instant relief of dry, tight skin with a wonderful cooling sensation and no greasy reside. The moisture I achieve with this cream is very long-lasting and all of the products in the line have a light, pleasant scent.


Although the cream appears blue in the jar it goes on clear and helps treat lines and wrinkles at their source for long-term results. The formula contains Hylasome EG10 which has 5 times the water-binding capacity of hyaluronic acid making it one of the most hydrating ingredients available on the market! Due to the lightweight formula, the cream also transitions well into the warmer seasons for a resilient, youthful complexion all year long!

Moisture Infusion 24 Hour Hydrating Serum $37.75
This luxurious serum is another one of my go-to products for hydrating my skin; in fact I keep it at my desk for a boost of moisture throughout the day!

Formulated for all ages and skin types, the serum increases hydration by up to 112% in just 2 hours! Infused with lychee extract, minerals and strong antioxidants, it protects against environmental aggressors like wind, cold, heat and dry climates.


When I apply the serum it instantly makes dryness disappear with a layer of intense, lightweight moisture that seems to melt into my skin and become undetectable.

Anti-Aging Gel (with fruit stem cells) $65
Formulated with breakthrough, award winning technology this oil-free, light gel has regenerating power to: firm, reduce the appearance of wrinkles and restore the complexion.


The extracts, vitamins and antioxidants protect and nourish while hydrating parched skin and refreshing the face. Although the packaging says 35+  I don’t shy away from using products that are targeted at more mature skin. Early prevention is the key to maintaining a youthful complexion! This is a great, refreshing gel to helps reverse the negative effects of winter and it works wonders as a night treatment.
  
Secure White Anti Dark Circle Complex $37
I use an eye treatment every night to help reduce darkness but there are few that claim to produce visible results in just 15 minutes!


Suitable for all skin types and all ages the Secure White Eye Cream has a fast acting, highly effective formula clinically proven to lighten dark under eye circles and reduce puffiness. The great thing about this product is that it has both short and long-term effects and can reduce darkness up to 22% in the first few minutes. Usually I am skeptical of these type of claims but in this case I do see a noticeable difference because the cream does not apply completely clear. Instead it has a slight tinge of color that produces subtle concealing coverage under the eyes for quick results.

Over 5 weeks it can help reduce dark circles by up to 59%, restore, refresh and improve the look of under eye bags. This is a great cream to apply prior to makeup because you can treat your eye area and lightly mask deep pigmentation which makes this eye cream one of my new favorites!

For more information visit NeoStrata by clicking HERE.

*press samples featured 

Friday, February 20, 2015

Wet n Wild Cosmetics Must-Have Makeup

Wet n Wild is one of those brands that almost everyone is familiar with because they are easily accessible and the makeup is very affordable. I have been using their products since I was a teen; in fact some of the very first makeup I experimented and learned with was the Wet n Wild eye shadows and lipsticks.

It is quite easy to be drawn to the array of bold colors and celebrity collaborations like the Fergie Collection and over the years the brand has improved its textures, packaging and formulas. Today I am featuring a few cult favorites and some new additions that you should definitely get your hands on!

The Wet n Wild Coloricon Eye Shadow 8 Pan Palettes have been consistent favorites among many makeup lovers. These nifty palettes are great for seasoned artists or beginners and each color is labelled for easy application although I tend to be a bit daring and apply them in interesting combinations. The blend of pigments is suitable for creating a variety of looks from neutral to dramatic with a beautiful mix of warm and cool undertones.


When it comes to drugstore shadows these pretty palettes are definitely among the best and they suit every complexion. The quality is outstanding for the price and they make a great addition to your collection. The formula is easy to work with, long-lasting and when applied over primer they tend not to crease or fade throughout the day. The shades that contain less shimmer are soft and silky whereas the ones with more feel slightly textured but they are all easy to work with and very buildable. 


Comfort Zone 738


The pigmentation is very vivid and the formula is buildable so you can control the intensity and effect. Petal Pusher contains pink, bronze, silver, purple and green hues making it a great palette for soft spring looks and deep smokey eyes. Comfort Zone has warm earthy colors such as deep green, olive, bronze, rust, gold and champagne. These palettes retail for just $4.99 each. 

Petal Pusher 736


The Wet n Wild Mega Last Lip Colors are highly pigmented, vivid and bold! These little lipsticks have been around for a while but the rich formula is made to last up to 4 hours and the variety of color is fantastic.

The finish is described as “semi matte” but they don't have much shine or any shimmer and although they are crèmes the formula can feel a bit dry with long-wear. Upon application they don't provide much slip but the slightly drier texture allows the crèmes to adhere to the lips very well for full-coverage, smudge proof results and no feathering.

From Left to right: Cherry Picking, Think Pink, Spotlight Red

The lipsticks do have a bit of moisture but I prefer to wear them on top of a lip primer or balm for extra hydration especially when my lips are dry. You can also apply a bit of clear gloss on top for more shine but as you can see from the swatches below you can't beat that color pay-off!

Swatches from left to right: 965 Cherry Picking, 901B Think Pink, 911D Spotlight Red 

I love the deep, sultry reds and pinks and if you prefer matte formulas these are great! They retail for just $3.99.

The Wet n Wild Mega Glo Illuminating Powder is available in 4 color combos and adds luminous glow and subtle iridescence to the face, neck, chest or body. The shade Spotlight Peach adds a touch of soft highlight with very little sparkle and it can also be used as blush for a natural, radiant flush, it retails for $5.50.


If you like a good balm-lipstick hybrid then the new Mega Slicks Balm Stains are great. Packaged as large lip pencils with no sharpening required the stains glide on buttery smooth while conditioning the lips with Acai Palm Oil. The formula is slick and glossy yet the pigmentation provides medium coverage and the texture is light and comfortable on the lips.


There are 6 shades available from dark and vampy to pink, plum, red and nude. I consider this product to be less of a stain and more of a gloss-balm-lipstick formulation but they add a pretty pop of color and they don’t cling to dry patches so you can wear them even when your lips are a bit chapped.

Swatches from Left to Right: 125 Red-Dy Or Not, 127 A Stiff Pink

These are great for those who prefer soft color that keeps lips moist and hydrated throughout the day, they retail for $3.99 ea.

The Coloricon blushes have been some of my favorites for years! Although the shade range is limited the pigmentation is amazing! They are formulated for effortless blending and you can easily take the color from sheer to vivid. You do have to be careful not to over-apply as the pigment is very bold. I usually shake or blot my brush to diffuse the color but they are long-lasting and can be used to help sculpt and shape the face. The shade below is Heather Silk but my favorite is Berry Shimmer, they retail for $4.99.


Last but not least is one of the new Coloricon 5 pan palettes called Art in the Streets. This palette looks very retro and the bright colors are perfect for spring! You don’t have to wear all the shades together if you find them to be a bit much but you can pair them with other shadows from your collection and blend them out to neutralize the pigment. They don’t apply quite as electric as they appear in the palette, on the skin they look softer and you can build them up for more intensity.


If you haven’t checked out Wet n Wild recently then definitely head over to their isle next time you are perusing the drug store. They have a large variety of products and trendy colors! (Wet n Wild products are available at mass market retailers)


*Press samples featured
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