May 28, 2015

Guerlain Météorites Oxygen Booster Care and Rainbow Pearls

To me, Guerlain has always been that one luxurious cosmetics brand that I fawn over at the counter but have never owned. The Météorites range, in particular, has frequently caught my eye -- in large part due to the gorgeous light-diffusing pearls featured in most of its products.

This summer, there are a number of exciting new releases within the Météorites line, two of which I was lucky enough to be sent for review: the Météorites Oxygen Care Moisturizer & Radiance Booster (on counter June 15) and the Météorites Rainbow Pearls (available now).

The upcoming Météorites Oxygen Care Moisturizer & Radiance Booster ($80) features O2 Light, which helps encourage the skin's natural light receptors. Stardust technology creates a "perfecting halo" on the skin, fading away any lines and imperfections. The radiance is immediately evident (as you can see from the swatch below) and though I personally prefer a matte complexion even I was astounded by the resultant glow. If you are a fan of dewy, glowy skin then you will love this moisturizer.

The cream feels like a hybrid gel-creme formula and doesn't feel too rich to apply morning and night, as recommended.

Guerlain typically releases special edition versions of its Pearls each year and this summer, you can look forward to the Météorites Rainbow Pearls (buy here). Housed in a beautiful round tin that will pretty up any vanity, these light-revealing powder pearls are seriously breath-taking (I'm aware this seems like a weird word to use to describe makeup but in this case I swear it's true).

Unlike basic highlighters, the Météorites Pearls feature specially selected colours that, when blended together, work both to colour correct and illuminate the skin. The Rainbow Pearls have a bit more shimmer/glitter than other Pearls which is something to be aware of if you're considering purchasing them. It won't look like a glitter bomb has exploded all over your skin thankfully, but if you look closely you can detect very tiny specks of glitter.

Overall, I adore both of these products, with one caveat -- the scent. Guerlain's signature violet fragrance is quite heavy, very powdery and what one might call "mature". Though there is no denying its distinctiveness, it's a bit much for my personal preference as I am quite sensitive to strong scents. Nonetheless, it won't stop me from using these products... I mean, have you seen them? They are far too pretty not to!

May 26, 2015

Chinatown Afternoon

Despite living in Vancouver for over a decade and regularly frequenting various neighbourhoods throughout the city, I rarely hang out in Chinatown (except Union St/East Georgia St where some of my favourite restaurants are located). For a fun weekend adventure, I thus decided to head off to our historic Chinatown for the afternoon. It was a chance to indulge in some bubble tea (though who am I kidding? I drink BBT on the reg), visit some shops, and pick up some egg tarts to snack on. Yum!

T-Shirt: La Notte (Aritzia) / Jeans: J Brand (here) / Shoes: Nike (here)
Bag: Proenza Schouler (here) / Sunglasses: Ray-Ban (here)

May 23, 2015

The Wet Brush vs. Tangle Teezer

It may come as a bit of a surprise to some of you but up until quite recently, I didn't own a hair brush. That doesn't mean I let my hair run wild & free, of course. But since it's naturally fine and straight, I could get by easily with a wide-toothed comb and nothing else. After many rounds of bleach, however, my hair is now more prone to tangling and knots so when Nail Polish Canada asked me to compare two brush lines that they sell (for those not familiar with NPC, they sell a lot more than nail polish!), their request could not have come at a better time.

The Wet Brush versus the Tangle Teezer... which one came out victorious in this battle of hair brushes?

For me, the answer is hands-down, The Wet Brush!

The Wet Brush looks like a standard hair brush with a long handle, round brush head, and a padded base. What differs from a standard hair brush are its IntelliFlex Bristles which are thin and flexible so when you run the brush through your hair they don't pull or get stuck. They also feature rounded ultra soft poly tips, what the company calls SofTips, that don't poke against the scalp. The Wet Brush can be used on both wet and dry hair without causing any damage, and I have been using it when I get out of the shower as well as after styling to brush out my curls and create softer waves.

As for the Tangle Teezer, I had heard about it ages ago and have always wanted one. Unfortunately, it did not live up to my expectations. The small plastic brush is designed to ergonomically fit into the palm of your hand, which it does perfectly. The bristles are staggered between long and short for "dual action" but they do not have tips. Instead they are very pointy and kind of sharp which does not feel so great against the scalp, especially in comparison to The Wet Brush. Despite this fact, the Tangle Teezer does do what it says -- it detangles without getting stuck and I do really like the unique design.

I think if I had not tried The Wet Brush, I would have thought the Tangle Teezer was fine but there is definitely a marked difference in the way the two brushes feel. Nonetheless, the Tangle Teezer is a great travel companion (I keep mine in my purse for on-the-go brushing) whereas The Wet Brush has now become an at-home staple.

May 21, 2015

Too Faced Summer 2015: Natural Matte Eyeshadow Palette, Cocoa Contour, and Better Than False Lashes Extreme!

Too Faced has a number of fun releases for Summer 2015 including three products that I was sent for review and have been dying to share with you all.

First up, my favourite of the bunch: the Too Faced Natural Matte Eyeshadow Palette. You read that right -- an entirely matte palette. Eyeshadow addicts rejoice! The company took their best-selling Natural Eyes Palette and turned all 9 shades matte... sort of, anyway.

The matte shades from Natural Eyes have all been moved into this palette (HeavenCashmere BunnySexspressoNudie). They are joined by five new matte versions of the other Natural Eyes shadows and given semi-related names. Silk Teddy's matte counterpart is Lace Teddy, Push-Up's is Strapless, Erotica's is Risque, Honey Pot's is Honey Butter, and Chocolate Martini's is Chocolate Cookie. The shadows are buttery smooth, completely matte, and I am obsessed with them.

The Too Faced Cocoa Contour Palette is another fun addition to the company's product line. I'm new to their Cocoa Complex, which is infused into these powders, so I was surprised when I realized that they do actually smell like chocolate (not a fake smell at all but instead yummy and delicious). In fact, every time I open the palette I kind of want to eat it.

The palette features two sculpting powders (Medium Cocoa and Dark Cocoa), a matte highlighter (Light Cocoa), and a shimmery highlighter (Pop of Light). The little Contour Buki Brush that's included is really soft and although I rarely use the brushes that come with palettes I like using this one with these powders. Plus, like many Too Faced products, there's a folded instructionable that shows you how to achieve a range of contoured looks, from more natural to "celebrity."

Last in this round-up is the most recent addition to the company's mascara line, Too Faced Better Than False Lashes Extreme! You get two tubes, one of mascara (the gold) and one of fibres (the white). You start by layering on the black Prime & Seal Mascara. Next, you layer on the fibres, and then swipe on another coat of the Prime & Seal.

This was my first introduction to fibre lashes and to be honest, I find them kind of weird. The fibres are literally white pieces of fluff that you brush onto your lashes and then cover up. They do sort of add volume but I don't think they look like false lashes. Plus they made my lashes feel heavy and were annoying to remove, despite many swipes of makeup remover.

Below is a quick FOTD to show you these three products in action. On my eyes, I'm wearing the three shadows from the "Classic" section in the Natural Matte Palette and the Better Than False Lashes Extreme! duo on my lashes.

On my face, I used a mix of all 4 powders from Cocoa Contour. I almost never contour since I wear glasses the majority of the week for work and they kind of cover any sculpting/highlighting efforts. However, it was kind of fun playing around with light/dark and attempting to create the semblance of cheekbones.

May 19, 2015

Springtime Sweatin'

I hope all my Canadian readers had a good Victoria Day long weekend... the extra day off was just what I needed given how busy I have been at work this month. I went for a hike, rode my bike, saw Pitch Perfect 2, ate a ton (including the Westcoast Tea Service at the Urban Tea Merchant), and caught up with my friends and family. You may also notice that the blog got a bit of a re-design!

As for today's outfit, the last time I wore this sweatshirt on the blog it was Fall (and almost 2 years ago, at that). However, with the up-and-down sometimes it's hot/sometimes it's not weather we've been experiencing lately, I've also been loving it as a layering piece this Spring. See? Spending that much money on a fleece can totally be justified...

Sweatshirt: Zoe Karssen / Dress (worn as skirt): Wilfred Free (Aritzia)
Shoes: Nine West (c/o) / Sunglasses: Ray-Ban (here)

May 14, 2015

FOTD: Lise Watier Rivages Collection

Summer for me means bronze skin & cinnamon tans (anyone get the reference? I love this song, btw). Since I tan really easily, that means a change in makeup becomes necessary and I especially like the look of cooler neutrals for a sun-kissed and unfussy look. That's where Lise Watier's Summer 2015 collection, Rivages, comes in.

Inspired by the beach, the new products and colours are the perfect complement to summer tans. I was lucky enough to be sent most of the collection and could not wait to start playing with everything. I mean, look at how pretty it all is!

The star is, of course, the Palette Rivages Eyeshadows, a gorgeous palette with a mother of pearl cover that houses 10 neutral shades. The shadows feature Lise Watier's signature powder-cream formula, which is a little hard to describe. The texture is on the harder side (don't expect a "buttery" application) but seems to work with these shimmers. I applied the 24 Hrs Glam Eyeshadow in Sexy Glam, a pale pink stick eyeshadow, as a base before layering on the rose gold and taupe shadows from the palette. For a smudgy but still defined eye, I used an angle brush with the darkest shadow as a liner and the Smokey Kohl Velours in Nude Velours to line my bottom waterline.

Lise Watier releases a new bronzer every summer and this year's is the Rivages Bronzing Powder. It's a baked marble of bronze, pink, and gold that adds a nice glow to the skin. I also love the new Blush Fondant Suprême in Sand which is a beautiful muted rose pink. Rouge Sublime Lipstick in Amour finished off this very pink-themed look.

For a full list of the products used in this FOTD, be sure to check out my submission this week to the FASHION Magazine Beauty Panel.

Lise Watier Rivages is limited edition and can be purchases online or in select retailers like London Drugs until the end of July.

May 12, 2015

Jump(suit) Around

Since getting their Heart You dress, I've been wanting to add to my Three Floor collection so I obviously couldn't help but jump on this Legacy Jumpsuit a while back when it went on sale. I'm obsessed with the navy colour, mesh and velvet inserts, and cutouts... all details that made this the perfect first jumpsuit purchase.

Jumpsuit: Three Floor / Shoes: MICHAEL Michael Kors
Bracelets: AVON (c/o)

May 9, 2015

Dream of Californ-Vacation

Not gonna lie, I definitely patted myself on the back for this blog post title (the Red Hot Chili Peppers song, "Californication" is one of my go-to karaoke jams). Plus, at this point, it's now been an entire month since I returned from California so my dreams of Californ-vacations are very real. Anyway, this is the third and final re-cap from my trip, which includes a round-up of some random things I did apart from roadtripping down the Pacific Coast Highway and exploring San Francisco.

For example, attending my very first NBA game! I saw the Golden State Warriors vs. the Phoenix Suns and there was much excitement when the Warriors won by only 1 point with just seconds to spare. Stephen Curry is the real MVP, for sure.

I also managed to explore some iconic tech spots in Silicon Valley, including the Yahoo! campus and, of course, Google. The Google bike picture was kind of a necessity.

Since we wanted to get some hiking in, we also made the long drive to Yosemite National Park. I wish we had had more time than just a day for it as it seems like such a beautiful place to camp and explore. However, we were able to take in some rather iconic sights in Yosemite Valley, including El Capitan and Bridalveil Fall.

Honestly, it now feels like my Cali trip happened forever ago (work and life have been non-stop since I got back). But the good news is I actually have another fun vacation coming up next month. So now I'm just counting down the days!

May 6, 2015

OPI SoftShades 2015 Nail Polish Collection

Despite gravitating towards slightly more adventurous colours, I've always had a soft spot for neutral nail polishes (see, for example, this 2010 review of my much beloved OPI Bubble Bath). I do also prefer to keep things toned down when I have to go to court or meet with clients. Enter: the new OPI SoftShades Collection for 2015.

OPI typically releases some sort of soft shade collection every spring, and this year's consists of six polishes: Put in in Neutral, Petal Soft, Act Your Beige!, Make Light of the Situation, and This Silver's Mine! I was lucky enough to be sent the whole collection so I thought I'd have a little swatch party with them.

Put it in Neutral is a sheer pale pink that can be layered for a more opaque look (I am wearing 3 coats). If you want to add a little sheen to your nails, you could try using just 1 coat but would need to be careful with the application to avoid streaking.

Petal Soft is a clear glitter top coat featuring pink and white regular and hexagonal glitters, as well as larger flower-shaped decals. I'm wearing it here over Put it in Neutral and I just love how it looks! If you have very curved nail beds, the flowers are quite thick so they might not lay flat against your nails (thankfully I don't have that problem). Petal Soft is an almost exact dupe of the Sephora Formula X Cherry Blossom Top Coat as well, in case you missed out on it.

Act Your Beige! is described as a light beige though I found it leaned more on the white side. Sadly, it applies quite sheer and streaky. I'm wearing 3 coats here and you can see it's still a bit patchy and uneven.

Chiffon My Mind is a shimmery white. It was a bit streaky to work with but if you're patient, the result is just gorgeous. I love wearing white nail polish (case in point) and this is a nice alternative to my usual flat white nails.

Make Light of the Situation is an iridescent silver glitter top coat that seems to have some blue-ish or holo-type glitters mixed in. It's more multi-dimensional than one of my other favourite glitter top coats, China Glaze Fairy Dust, and looks especially great over Chiffon My Mind as I'm wearing it here.

This Silver's Mine! is a pearlescent silver and unfortunately my least favourite of the polishes in this collection. Frosts are notoriously difficult to work with and this one is no exception... no matter what I tried, I could not avoid the streaks. It looks a lot worse close-up as I'm sure no one would really notice once it's on your nails but I'm still not a fan.

May 3, 2015

All About the Accessories

While I obviously have a thing for designer handbags and shoes, I don't tend to wear much jewelry. This outfit, however, is all about the accessories. A chunky sweater layered over a silk slip dress provided the perfect canvas for my Chanel So Black Chevron Mini Flap (this was a San Francisco purchase!) and Valentino Rockstud Pumps.

Next, I added some new favourite pieces from local line House of Hudson. You may remember I first introduced Melissa's jewelry in this post. Well, I am also pretty obsessed with her signature knuckle rings as well as these geometric studs that wrap around the bottom of my earlobes. If you're in Vancouver, be sure to check out House of Hudson at Le Marché St. George's summer pop-up, which is on until May 10. I stopped by yesterday (Instagram) and there are some seriously gorgeous items to be purchased.

Slip Dress (worn as skirt): Wilfred (Aritzia) / Sweater: Wilfred (Aritzia)
Shoes: Valentino (here) / Bag: Chanel / Jewelry: House of Hudson (c/o)

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