Friday, October 30, 2015

Clarisonic Aria/ Mia 3 Review

If you haven’t joined the Sonic Revolution for smooth, beautiful skin then today you are in for treat! I love wearing makeup and bold, rich colors but all those heavy, pore clogging formulas can take their toll on my skin. Along with environmental aggressors and frequent travel my skincare routine includes serious restorative treatments, weekly facials, intense moisture, micordermabrasion and of course thorough cleansing with my Clarisonic!

Recently I took a trip to Europe and while enjoying the Hammam Turkish Spa at my hotel some local women asked me how I am able to keep my skin so radiant and what I use. I recommended some of my favorite serums and moisturizers as well as my Clarisonic Mia 3, formerly called the Aria. Sometimes water and daily cleanser is just not enough and to get rid of deep debris for potent pore reviving, resurfacing results you need something that delivers quick, effective cleansing!

The Clarisonic is 6 times more effective than using your hands alone and it is designed with 3 speeds so that you can customize your daily routine. Speed one is suitable for sensitive fragile skin and sometimes I use this speed for mid-week cleansing when I don’t need anything more vigorous. Speed 2 is for normal daily use and enhances cleansing 26% from speed one. Speed three is great when you need to remove impurities lodged deep within pores. I use this speed 1-2 times per week when my skin needs a little pick-me-up or before I attend parties and press events.

What separates the Clarisonic from other devices I own is its supersonic ability that produces over 300 movements per second! Unlike other units that simply rotate and clean the surface of skin the Mia 3 has quick, stimulating vibrations and as you move the brush gently around your face in circular motions it also promotes circulation. This technique provides deep cleansing as well as surface cleansing for skin that feels incredibly soft, rejuvenated and ready to efficiently absorb topical treatments.

Clarisonic on drying stand

I usually begin by removing my makeup with a wipe and initial rinsing with a foaming formula to prevent makeup from collecting on the bristles and staining the brush. The process only takes 60 seconds with a built-in timer that beeps to let you know when to move onto each area of the face: 20 seconds for the forehead, ten seconds per cheek and 20 seconds for the chin.

The Clarisonic has become an integral part of my beauty routine because I love how even the texture of my skin feels and I notice that my makeup applies incredibly even without a primer for a more airbrushed finish. It also seems to prevent breakouts, diminish excess oil, and reduce the size of pores for a fresh, polished supple complexion!

If you are new to this method of cleansing I recommend that you begin with the correct brush head for your skin type (delicate, sensitive, normal or deep pore) and start slowing to see how your skin reacts. Too much cleansing can dry out the skin and cause irritation so don’t overdo it! I usually use my Clarisonic 2-3 times per week and I don’t use it on the days I apply other exfoliating products such as scrubs or microdermabrasion.

The brand recommends replacing the brush every 3 months but I find that it really depends on how you care for it and how much you use it. I like to disinfect my brush often and rinse with cleanser and warm water after each use. The replacement brushes retail for $27.00 each or 2 for $44.00 and the device is waterproof so you can use it in the shower.

I absolutely love my Clarisonic but it does have a couple flaws. The internal battery cannot be removed or replaced when it no longer holds the charge and it takes about 18 hours to fully charge which is quite lengthy. Fortunately when your battery is running low it will let you know by flashing and beeping as you turn on the device.

The cleanser comes with a 2 year warranty, drying stand, USB charger, sensitive brush head and a travel size cleanser for $199.00. It is also available in a few other shades online by clicking HERE or at Sephora. The Clarisonic is definitely one of my most beloved secret weapons for radiant, healthy skin!

*Press sample featured

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Pürminerals Love Your Selfie Limited Edition Palette

In a world obsessed with selfies and capturing every moment for social media you have to be ready to strike a pose when it's time for your closeup. There are tons of filters and editing apps out there but you can’t fake gorgeous makeup! Pürminerals has released the chic little Love Your Selfie Palette that comes with everything you need to create a fabulous look and publish those pics with confidence. The Kit includes 8 beautiful eye shadows that are great for everyday wear and suitable for both fresh day looks and that smokey party girl vibe. It also comes with a mineral glow bronzer, pretty pink blush, illuminating powder, neutral lip gloss and the best selling Big Look Mascara.

What I love about these shades is that they look ravishing on any complexion and the pigmentation is wonderful! In true Pürminerals style the quality is fantastic and the pigments are silky smooth for buildable coverage and long-lasting trendy creations that don’t crease.

There are deep sultry hues for defining and sculpting the crease along with beautiful shimmery colors for enhancing the eyes like champagne pink (Filter) and silvery beige (Flash) for a bright, beautiful finish. There is also a fabulous selection of matte hues that are great for blending and the rich black (Closeup) can add impressive dimension to any look. The Selfie Palette retails for $49.00.

For this simple look I used the shade Photobomb (deep plum) in the crease and blended it darker on the outer corners of the eyes and lighter toward the inner corners. I deepened the color with the shade Closeup and for a pop of fall I added a touch of cranberry pink from another palette. On my lids I used a mixture of Filter and Flash applied by patting the pigment onto the lids to build-up the color. You can also frame the inner tear duct area with the same shades as they highlight the eyes beautifully. Under my brows I used the shade Fade (neutral beige) as a matte highlight and I also used it to buff and blend the crease colors. I then lined my upper lid with the Double Ego Eyeliner in the shade Milan and added a few coats of the Big Looks Mascara for length and volume. I also used the blush (Savvy) which has great color pay-off and I swept a touch of the Afterglow highlight onto my cheekbones and along the bridge of my nose for glowing skin.

For my face I started with the Air Perfection CC Cushion Foundation in the shade Tan which gave me a smooth, flawless finish. I layered it with some of my concealer for more coverage and set my entire face with the Pürminerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup Powder with SPF 15. On my lips I used the Pürminerals Lip Lure Lacquer in the shade Fiery. I absolutely love these lacquers as they have amazing pigmentation, excellent longevity and a creamy rich texture that really makes lips pop!

Pure Lure Lip Lacquers

The Air Perfection Foundation delivers an airy mousse texture that blends beautifully and you can use the Liquid Chisel Brush (26.00) to apply the pigment in circular motions for a seamless finish. The compact is refillable and the foundation provides light to medium coverage that layers well and dries quickly for a nice matte effect. This portable foundation infuses the skin with Brazilian Babassu Oil plus other nutritive oils, antioxidants, amino acids and vitamins to moisturize, diminish irritation and protect. It retails for $49.00.

Pürminerals Makeup can be found exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart

*Press samples featured

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Beauty Box Five October 2015 Review

It's that time of the month again! My little blue box has arrived at the door bursting with pink goodies! This month’s girly theme included a couple items I have wanted to try for a while and I am quite happy with what I received.

Before I delve into the box let’s review how the service works. Beauty Box Five is a subscription that starts at $12 for the monthly box, $30 for the quarterly subscription and $99 dollars for a year. You receive a mix of luxury items and common brands with products for: hair, skin and nails as well as fragrances and beauty accessories. The box contains 5 products and usually includes 2-3 full sized items. It is a great way to sample a variety of new brands!

Nubar Mini Polish ($4.99)
I like mini bottles of nail polish because they take up less space and are idea for travel. At first I wasn’t sure about this baby pink Barbie hue called Pinktober as I usually stay away from milky shades but it actually looks good on my skin tone and works for manis and pedis. The thin brush isn’t too mini which allows for decent control and although it takes 2-3 coats to achieve opaqueness the finish is nice.

Styli-Style Perfect Pout Long-Lasting Balm Stick (full size included $4.99)
I have reviewed Styli-Style before, in fact I may already have this cute purple hue in my collection but I do like the creamy, hydrating texture and the light comfortable formula. These balm sticks provide nice pigmentation and smooth coverage that anyone with lips will appreciate. They are also affordable and make great stocking stuffers for women of all ages.

HappyFace Makeup Cleansing Cloth ($3.99)
I have seen a variety of these cloths on Instagram and as someone who likes to play with makeup and layer on the shadow I adore anything that can remove it quickly at the end of the day. The texture is super soft against the skin, like something you would use on a baby and they are machine washable so you can use them again and again! The directions state that cleanser is not required as the cloth is made to remove makeup with water alone although the oil in most foundations creates a smeared mess and only some of it comes off. I think the cloths are a good first step to cleansing and they are very gentle but I do need to follow up with a foaming cleanser afterwards and it is a bit difficult to remove mascara and waterproof liner with just water.

Ferro Cosmetics Pink Rhinestone Kabuki Brush ($25.00)
I never turn down more makeup brushes and this soft, plush kabuki feels fantastic and buffs on mineral foundation, powders, blush and bronzer. I love the texture, size, shape and pink tinged bristles but there is quite a bit of shedding when you start using it which I wouldn’t expect from a twenty five dollar brush. Like most brushes that shed it does taper off over time.

Knotty Hair Ties ($4.00)
A few weeks ago when I went to the L’Oreal Professionnel hair salon my stylist actually recommended these hair ties when she saw how much of my hair was getting wrapped around and caught in the ones I use. I was a bit concerned with the knot coming undone as it holds the tie together but you can move it up and down to adjust the size and it actually holds my long, thick hair quite securely. These hair ties are designed to prevent snags, breakage and the dreaded ponytail dent and they don’t look unstylish on your wrist when you need to keep them handy for hair emergencies.

Overall this month’s box was great and if you’d like more info you can visit the website by clicking HERE.

*Press samples featured

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

LUSH Halloween Collection!

Tis the season of ghouls and goblins and I am ready to get my candy on! This year I will be celebrating Halloween with dinner and a spooktastic horror movie marathon. My sis and I are carving up our traditional pumpkin that always ends up looking the exact same every year regardless of which design we choose and who we always name – Pumpkiny Boo (don’t ask).

I love decorating the house with festive details and the Sparkly Pumpkin Bubble Bars by LUSH add a touch of warm shimmer to cold, windy nights and make lovely accent pieces. You can use these cuties as glittering autumn centerpieces or stack them on a plate for a touch of Halloween fun! They not only look pretty they also make the room smell sweet as candy and glam-up any creepy party.

The pumpkin is enriched with a calming blend of juniper, lime and orange oils that waft through the air and smell delectable! Simply crumble it under running water, immerse yourself in the rich orange foam and relax. You may end up with a little glitter on your skin so I would use it before a party or event. This bath bar retails for $7.95.

The Lord of Misrule Bath Bomb is also a part of the Halloween collection and the herbal blend of patchouli and black pepper oil bring a bit of mischief to the tub. As it froths and fizzles your bath water will swirl and crackle with hues of silver, wine and deep green and the sinfully rich concoction scents the skin in yummy vanilla. This bath bomb retails for $6.95.

Lord of Misrule is also available as a shower gel and although it looks like green Frankenstein slime it smells amazing! 

To get your hands on these magical creations by LUSH check out one of their many locations or visit the website by clicking HERE.

*Press samples featured

L’Occitane Jasmine – Immortelle Neroli Collection by Pierre Hermé & Holiday Gifts!

Paris is one of my favorite cities and I remember standing in line outside of a fragrant little shop owned by world renowned pastry chef Pierre Hermé to taste some of his delectable macaroons. I was astounded by the intensity of flavor and the experience was like tasting chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, pistachio and other fresh ingredients for the very first time! 

Pierre does not shy away from bold parings and this year he teamed up with L’Occitane to create two scintillating collections: Jasmine – Immortelle Neroli and Grapefruit Rhubarb!

Both scents are unique but I prefer the Jasmine as it combines the fresh floral scents of France with a modern edge that is soft, feminine and irresistible! This scent is great for women of all ages and I love how the delicious sweet notes pair with the subtle sexiness of the musk.

The key ingredients include: Immortelle essential oil from Corsica and of course Jasmine flower and Neroli essence. It also has sensual notes of Pink Pepper, Lemon, Orange Blossom, Amber, White Wood and Musk. The fragrance is refined, soft and sophisticated and it reminds me of walking through a crisp, spring meadow on a sunny day. The perfume retails for $65.00.

This alluring scent is carried through the entire collection and the shower gel smells so good you won’t want bath time to end! The luxurious formula rejuvenates, relaxes and awakens your senses before you start your day and the lush bubbles foams away dirt and oil for an invigorating clean. It retails for $22.00.

Soap bars also available

The Body lotion is silky, creamy and lusciously smooth for supple, long lasting moisture. I love that it lightly perfumes the skin as it deeply conditions with a delicate blend of ingredients and a non-greasy finish that is ideal for both sunny summer days and blustery winter nights. The natural extracts, butters and flower oils nourish, protect and improve the texture of skin for smooth, supple results. The cream retails for $32.00.

Fall is just around the corner and for dry hands, damaged nails and rough cuticles the hand creams from L’Occitane are exceptional! These little tubes instantly relieve parched skin for soft, manicure worthy hands you will definitely want to show-off! 

The formula helps improve skin's resiliency, protects against environmental elements and is enriched with natural oils and butters that are organically farmed. A little goes a long way with lasting results and they are the perfect purse size! The hand creams retail for just $12.00 making them fabulous gifts or stocking stuffers and this winter they will be a staple in my skincare routine.

Starting this October you can get this great collection plus other amazing gift sets for the holiday season including unisex scents like The Almond Collection which smells amazing! 

At L’Occitane there is something luxurious for everyone on your list including the guys and gift sets start at just $20.


On Friday August 21, 2015 L'Occitane opened the doors of their 35th Canadian boutique in the Toronto Eaton Centre! You can also visit the website by clicking HERE.

*Press samples featured

Monday, October 26, 2015

Korean Skincare: Racinne Ultimate Aqua Blanc Review

Korean skincare has been taking the beauty market by storm and on average Asian women spend more money on products to help improve their complexion rather than covering problem areas with heavy makeup. The idea of correcting instead of camouflaging inspired me to test out the Aqua Blanc Series which is formulated to brighten skin tone in just two weeks and improve the appearance of dark spots or in my case slight discoloration.

When you see the words “skin brightening” some of you may think chemicals and unnatural whitening but this line is all about using natural ingredients to revive dull complexions for a healthy glow that makes skin appear vibrant and healthy! It isn’t about changing the color of your skin, it is about enhancing it for a fresh, youthful finish that appears radiant with or without makeup.

The Brightening Boost Lotion has a refreshing gel-cream texture that creates a protective barrier with a layer of vitamins and hyaluronic acid for optimal moisture. The formula is very lightweight and absorbs quickly with no greasy residue or shine. Because of the matte finish it works well under makeup and leaves skin smooth, supple and silky. 

Enriched with 16 natural skin brightening extracts including lotus leaf, aloe, cucumber, macadamia seed oil, shea butter, olive, cranberry and more it firms and provides nutrition while diminishing the appearance of hyperpigmentation. The cream feels great on my skin and I can layer it with natural oils or a rich moisturizer if I need a bit more hydration in fall and winter. It is also suitable for sensitive skin and retails for $37.99.

The Aqua Blanc Concentrate is designed to be used on its own or with the lotion for an extra brightening boost. Not only does it help even skin tone and reduce dark spots it has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties to protect against pollution, dirt and impurities while deeply replenishing. This formula also has a wonderful cooling cream-gel texture and soaks in efficiently to make skin soft and resilient. Created with advanced Korean Biotechnology it is infused with natural brightening ingredients and anitoxidants that target hyperpigmentation. When used together the cream and concentrate seem to be most effective at improving my complexion. It retails for $45.99.

The Whitening Tonic works with the other products to enhance skin tone but it also protects against the elements, balances skin pH, minimizes pores, improves texture and prevents damage caused by dryness which is exactly what I need this winter! This product comes with a spray dispenser which feels amazing when spritzed on parched skin and although it is part of the treatment I use it on its own as a refreshing face mist when my skin needs a little pick-me-up or revival in the morning. It can also be applied after cleansing and before cream. The Tonic retails for $27.99 and is suitable for all skin types.

Like any skincare range results may vary and it may take time to yield visible results but after soaking up some sun this summer this collection is helping to restore my complexion to its former glory and undo some of the damage. I did have to use the products for a few weeks before I saw any improvement but combined with daily cleansing and weekly facials I am beginning to notice more radiance and almost no discoloration where my blemishes use to be. I like that the lightening effect is natural and subtle instead of patchy and inconsistent and I do find myself having to use less concealer which is great!

You can get this collection and more great skincare from Racinne by visiting their website at

*Press samples featured

Friday, October 23, 2015

Fabulous Fall Lipstick!

By now many of us are adjusting to the change of season and transitioning into rich fall hues, warm sweaters and stylish boots. My frizz-free hair is loving this weather and my lips are ready to be slathered in flattering pigments!

Today I am sharing some of my favorite autumn lip colors, from bright and ravishing to dark and sultry these babies will keep your pout on trend. Lipstick junkies beware, this post may have you running to your nearest department store with credit card in hand because these hues are definitely drool-worthy! 

Mac- Heroine

Burberry- Union Red ($36.00)

Mark Cosmetics- Siren, Vixen & Starlet ($13.00 ea)

Loreal- Blake's Pure Red ($10.99)

Burberry- Golden Peach ($38.00)

Maybelline Color Sensational Creamy Matte- 685 Craving Coral ($9.99)

Mark Cosmetics Ultra Color Lipsticks- Red Tulip, Plum Verbena & Peach Petunia ($12.00 ea)

Vasanti Gel Matte Lipstick- Mad Love ($19.99)

Mary Kay City Modern Velvet Lip Cremes- top to bottom: Oh So Chic, Naturally Chic & Berry Stylish ($18.00 ea)

Maybelline Rebel Bloom- Coral Burst ($9.99)

Burberry Lip Velvet- Oxblood ($38.00)

If you see a lipstick that catches your eye click the links before the color for full review and swatches!
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