November 17, 2017

A Matte Shellac Mani (feat. CND Mystic Slate)

Last week, I was invited to preview the new CND Glacial Illusion Collection at Prép Beauty Parlour and it's got to be one of my favourite nail polish collections that's been released in recent years. With the Arctic as its core inspiration, the collection features some gorgeous shades that are perfect for the winter and holiday season (check them all out here).

I was immediately drawn to Mystic Slate, an icy slate grey that leans blue. However, I also wanted to add a unique touch to my mani so I asked my manicurist to finish it with the Matte Top Coat from the CND Shellac Alluring Trilogy Collection.

That's right... a MATTE Shellac mani! Did you even know such a thing was possible? Most people love gel and Shellac manicures for the glossy shine, but I love that this top coat means you can now get the long wear of Shellac with a matte finish. 

I've tried matte top coats before like Essie Matte About You, but because I was dealing with regular nail polish, I found that I would get chipping after only a few days. This CND top coat, on the other hand, cures under a UV lamp like the regular Shellac top coat. It's a serious game changer.

I couldn't be happier with this mani and am honestly just obsessed with how it turned out. So chic, right?!

November 14, 2017

Big Changes

As you all know, I started this blog almost 8 years ago while I was attending law school. Since graduating in 2011, I have been working as a lawyer in a very specialized practice area and have, for privacy reasons, made efforts to ensure that my professional career is kept separate from my blogging hobby. In keeping with this caveat, I actually have some big news to share: as of today, I am officially leaving private practice! This decision was not an easy one to make as I truly love my firm and the work that we do. However, private practice has proven difficult for me in many ways and resulted in considerable stress and health issues over time. I felt I owed it to myself to see if there was a way I could transition my career into something more sustainable for the long-term. So, starting today, I will be taking on a new role at a large organization (still in law). Although it's a bit nerve-wracking to be taking this step, I am very excited about the new opportunity.

To celebrate, I had to buy myself something -- obviously. I love a bit of flash and this Prada Lion Bag definitely fit the bill. Who wouldn't love a statement piece that resembles a large door knocker?!

Blouse: TWIK (Simons) (c/o Chick Advisor) / Jeans: Frame (similar)
Boots: Vince / Bag: Prada (here)

November 6, 2017

Make Up For Ever Artist Face Color in B206 and B314

A few months ago, MAKE UP FOR EVER introduced its latest innovation in colour and customization: the Artist Face Color. Similar to the Artist Shadow line, Artist Face Color is a line of highlighters, sculpting powders, and blushes that come in magnetized refill pans which you can pop into either a single ($31 CAD for 1 refill + 1 palette), duo ($44 CAD for 2 refills + 1 palette) or a triple ($56 CAD for 3 refills + 1 palette).

The palette (for the duo and triple) is MUFE's standard design that we've seen on other products like the Ultra HD Pressed Powder, for example. It features a large mirror and a very strong magnet so you'll never have to worry about your refill pans falling out. 

I love the concept behind this release because it allows you to truly customize how you want your palette. You could have an entire highlighter palette or create the ultimate highlighter + sculpting power + blush combination. In total, there are 34 shades to choose from in a range of matte, shimmer, and pearl finishes. For ease of reference, highlighter shades are denoted by an H-#, sculpting powders by S-#, and blushes by B-#.

L-R: Artist Face Color in B206 and B314

Since I'm a blush fiend, I obviously went for a blush duo when MUFE offered me the opportunity to test these out. B206 is a matte which is described as a peachy pink. In the pan this sounds about right but an initial swatch looked like a cooler pale pink. However, once I blended it into my skin it did get warmer and appeared true to its description. B314 is a shimmer tangerine which is a lot more bold but very pretty.

Both blushes are highly pigmented and easily blendable. The textures are so nice as well... very soft and finely milled. If you're on the hunt for a new face colour (or two, or maybe even three), definitely check these out!

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