Essie Gel Couture Nail Polish

Essie Gel Couture Review

Essie launched their Gel Couture polish line back in June. As a self-proclaimed Essie addict, I know that Essie very rarely launches new formulas or strays from their tried and true core products. I knew this launch was going to be big – it definitely did not disappoint. The packaging alone had me hooked… do you see how cute those bottles are?

Essie’s Gel Couture line is their version of the at home gel manicure trend. It includes 42 shades along with a top coat. They claim that you an get up to 14 days of wear with an instant gel-like shine that doesn’t require a UV light. This formulation also has a new wider rounded tip brush. This brush allows you to more easily apply the polish near the cuticles and requires fewer strokes to cover the nail. The wand also has a curve in it to keep the polish from sliding down the handle in big surprise drips.

Essie Gel Couture Brush

The colour selection in this line is amazing! They have a shade for everyone whether you love neutrals, bold colours or deeper tones. I have tried a shade from each category and the formula is consistent throughout. With the more neutral shade I found it more sheer in colour, but that is usually expected in softer tones. The top coat really locks the colour in place and provides a stunning gel shine. Even as I wore the polish I found the top coat really held its shine.

Now, what you’re probably wondering… did it live up to the 14 day claim? For me, no. But! Before you stop reading, I want you to know, out of all the at home gel manicure polishes I have tried, this is by far the best formulation. With others that I tried, they peeled off in entire strips a few days after application. With the Essie Gel Couture I can get anywhere from 5-7 days of wear out of it. I usually don’t start to see any chips until day 3 or 4, which are very minor along the tip of the nail. I photographed the last time I used the polish to show you how it wore. (Scroll over each picture to see how many days it has lasted on my nails.)

To get 5-7 days out of one nail polish application is amazing for me. When using a regular formulation I can’t get through one day without chipping my nails. I am extremely satisfied with how long the the Essie Gel Couture lasts and it has become my new favourite polish.

I also need to mention Essie’s amazing customer service. I tweeted them after two of the polishes I own from this collection broke – the wand applicator unattached from the lid. Within a few hours someone had responded and within three days and a few emails they offered to reimburse me for the cost of the nail polish. Thank you Essie!!

Have you tried the Essie Gel Couture? Were you able to make it the full 14 days? Let me know in a comment below!

Happy painting,

Kaitlyn xo

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Monthly Must Haves: August 2016

Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette, Nyx Butter Gloss, Benefit Goof Proof Pencil, Avene Skin Recovery Cream

I have mixed feelings about the month of August wrapping up. On one hand, I am so excited for cozy sweaters, fall fashion and there is something about a change in the season that feels like a fresh start. But, on the other hand, I am not ready to part with the warm weather and relaxed feelings that come along with summer. Either way, August is on its way out, and September is quickly approaching – I guess I’ll just have to embrace it. August seemed to be a month that I didn’t try a lot of new products, but rather discovered my love for the ones I have been using or rediscovered an old favourite. Here are my must have products for the month of August:

Benefit Goof Proof Brow Pencil Shade 3

Benefit’s Goof Proof Brow Pencil ($30) – I am sure you’re all probably sick of me confessing my love for the brow products from Benefit, but I just can’t get enough. I have gotten so many compliments on my brows since these products came out. It has a tear drop shape tip, which at first was really strange to me, but now that I’ve gotten the hang of it I love it. The more pointed edge is perfect for defining the brow and the wider edge works great for filling the brows. If you want to learn more about the brow products see my full review here.

Avene Skin Recovery Cream

Avene Skin Recovery Cream ($34) – Sometimes, when I try new products it can go very badly. Like very, very badly. Like the time I over exfoliated my face, or the time I used a glycolic mask and wet my skin first (glycolic and water don’t mix – it results in burning). The Avene Skin Recovery Cream is my life saver, or I guess skin saver, when I have these little skincare mishaps. I will slather on a thick layer to my entire face, or even use it as a mask and it instantly soothes any kind of irritation and makes me skin happy again. If you are anyone who suffers from your skin becoming easily irritated, or you have common skincare mishaps (me), I definitely recommend testing this guy out.

Nyx Butter Gloss

Nyx Tiramisu Butter Gloss ($8) – This lipgloss is always with me whether it is in my pocket at work, or in my purse. It is the perfect neutral shade that goes with everything. It also has a really hydrating feel without being too sticky or heavy. If you’re looking for a low maintenance and easy to wear product I definitely recommend!

Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette

Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette ($66) – This has been rotating in and out of my makeup routine forever. Whenever I bring it back out I always fall in love with this product all over again. There is something so flattering about the rose gold tones in this palette. I recently pulled this out of my collection again this month and I am so happy I did. The colours are beautiful, the pigmentation is perfect and it blends out so smoothly. I think I have all the UD Naked palettes and they are absolutely worth the price tag. They last forever and the quality is amazing. If you are looking for a good neutral palette I would recommend giving this one, or any in the Urban Decay Naked line a try.

Did you have any must have products this month? Let me know in a comment below!

Happy September,

Kaitlyn xo

Review: Shiseido Urban Environment Tinted UV Protector

Shiseido Urban Environment Tinted UV ProtectorI will be the first to admit that I am that girl who would wear makeup to the beach or the pool. So, when it comes to the warm summer months, I am all about getting the most I can out of my makeup. I want something that is going to even out my skin without being too heavy and provide extra sun protection where ever possible. This summer, I have been testing out Shiseido’s Urban Environment Tinted UV Protection and it has met all my high standards.

The Urban Environment Tinted UV Protector is very similar to a tinted moisturizer. It is lightweight, oil-free, hydrating and provides UVA and UVB protection (SPF 43), all while evening out your skin tone. An added bonus is that it is waterproof for up to 40 minutes before you need to reapply – talk about the perfect beach or poolside companion. There are three shades available in colour numbers 1, 2 and 3. It applies to the skin smoothly and blends out easily. I find the best application to be with a brush, but you can also use your fingers or a sponge.

I have combination to oily skin and generally prefer something with at least a medium coverage. With that being said, I was a little reluctant to first try out this product. Something that adds moisture to my skin and has the coverage of a tinted moisturizer… yikes! I am happy to say I was pleasantly surprised. I did use a primer, concealer for extra coverage and set it with a powder, but the results were fantastic. I did not get oily or shiny throughout the day and my skin maintained a nice matte finish. Despite being waterproof it removed from my skin easily with my regular makeup remover and cleanser.

One thing I will point out, is that it does have a fragrance to it. Personally, I am not sensitive to fragrance, so this wasn’t a concern for me. It also does not linger too long on the skin after application, which is another nice factor.

Pros: Light weight, UVA and UVB protection, waterproof for up to 40 minutes, maintained a matte finish

Cons: Limited colour selection (only 3 shades), scented (some people may have sensitivities to fragrance)

Overall, I am extremely happy to have found this product. It has become a summer essential for me. I love the texture, coverage, added moisture and sun protection it provides. Do you have any summer makeup essentials you can’t live without?

Kaitlyn xo

Tips for the Best Self-Tan Application

Tips for self-tan applicationAs a self-proclaimed sunscreen junkie, I have become a huge advocate for self-tanning products. My skin rarely sees sunlight without being slathered in sun protection that is SPF 50+ and as a result my skin literally glows in the dark. As we are now well into summer, I want to be sure to protect my skin from those harmful rays, but still maintain a beautiful summer glow. To achieve this I have been turning to sunless tanning products for a few years now. Through this time I have gone through my own trial and error process of figuring out the best application and maintenance for applying self-tanning products. Here are some of my tips and tricks to help you achieve a beautiful golden glow.

1. Preparation

Preparing your skin for self-tan is so important. This will increase the length of time that your tan lasts and will make the application much easier. You want to ensure you shave prior to tanning. Shaving can exfoliate the skin and as a result, remove your tan.

You also want to exfoliate. Self tanning products will adhere to dry skin patches, which can leave an uneven tan. Be sure to exfoliate your skin really well with a loofa or body scrub to remove any dry skin patches.

After exfoliating, moisturize any dry areas of skin. Areas such as your elbows, ankles, feet and knees usually tend to be the driest. When using a moisturizer, make sure it is an oil free product. Moisturizers that contain oil can leave a residue on the skin and can impact how your self-tanning product develops on the skin.

2. Application

Now that you have prepped your skin, it is time to apply! From my experience, the best way to apply self-tanning products is with a foam mitt applicator. It has always provided the most even application and prevents you from getting over tanned hands.

When it comes to applying tan to the face, or those dry areas like your elbows knees and feet, I always use the leftover product on the applicator mitt. This will make sure you don’t over apply in these areas and have any discolouration.

3. Maintenance 

Now that you have your beautiful tan you want to ensure you can hold onto its beauty for as long as possible. Make sure you are using a gentle skin cleanser on the face and body. Avoid using ingredients that are exfoliating such as glycolic or salicylic acid because they will rid of your tan faster.

Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize! Moisturizing will help to keep your tan lasting longer, and will allow it to fade more gracefully. It will make sure your tan doesn’t cling to any dry patches and that it stays evenly coloured on your skin.

Do you have any tried and true tips for keeping your tan looking great? Let me know!

Happy Self-Tanning,

Kaitlyn xo

Monthly Must Haves: June 2016

Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Water, La Roche Posay Anthelios, Benefit Kabrow, Essie Gel CoutureJune was the busiest month for me with everything from graduation, to celebrating my birthday, to the prep for a close friend’s wedding. My posts, as a result, have been few and far in between this month. With a new month now underway, I am getting back on track by starting off with my favourite products for the month of June.

Essie Gel Couture Nail Polish (Sheer Fantasy) – If you read my monthly favourites post last month (check it out here), then you know I am going through a huge obsession with nude pink nails. It is such a clean and polished look that goes with everything you’re wearing. I think it is so incredibly flattering. This month, Essie’s new Gel Couture polishes launched and they are amazing! They are Essie’s take on the at home gel manicure trend that doesn’t require a UV light to dry the polish. Let me tell you, these are game changing! It honestly looks like a shellac manicure and it lasts for a full 6 days before any major chipping. So far I have only tried the shade Sheer Fantasy, but expect a full review once I have had a chance to test out a few more shades.

Benefit Kabrow – Benefit launched their new brow products in June and they helped my brows find their game. For a full breakdown of the new brow collection see my post here. Someone told me my brows looked “fleeky” – definitely a first. Kabrow is a cream-gel brow colour. It does an amazing job at defining and filling in my brows, while still keeping them natural. It is a super easy product to use that is amazing for anyone just starting out, or a seasoned brow expert.

La Roche Posay Anthelios Ultra-Fluid Lotion – After working in the beauty industry for the past few years I have seen a whole new light to the reality of sun damage. This has turned me into a sunscreen addict. My favourite facial sunscreen is the Ultra-Fluid Lotion from La Roche Posay. It is a fast absorbing liquid with an SPF of 60 sunscreen that provides both UVA and UVB protection. It is extremely light weight, dries to a matte finish and wears flawlessly under makeup. If you are someone who isn’t a lover of sunscreen because of the heavy or oily texture I recommend giving this one a try. You won’t be disappointed.

Smashbox  Photo Finish Primer Water – This product has been a staple in my everyday routine for a while now, but with the warmer weather we have now it has become an essential. It is a facial mist that also helps extend how long my makeup wears, while having amazing benefits for the skin. It provides hydration and radiance which is perfect for the summer months when we all want glowing skin.

I hope you all had a great month of June! I would love to hear about your favourite products this month in a comment below.

Happy July,

Kaitlyn xo

Benefit’s New Brow Collection

Benefit Cosmetics New Brow Products

This Friday, June 24, Benefit’s new brow collection hits stores and I could not be more excited. When it comes to new product launches from Benefit I always get excited. They are one of my all time favourite brands. I mean, they aren’t a hard brand to love with their insanely cute and creative packaging along with their innovative products. I have had the pleasure of testing out some of their new products over the past three weeks and I promise you these new products are going to change your brow game (#browsonfleek). Let’s jump right into the products I have been obsessed with.

BROWVO! Conditioning Brow Primer, $36 – This product is not only a brow primer, which can be used to extend the wear time of your brow products and enhance their appearance, but it can also help your brows grow. I know that you’re probably thinking this is some kind of gimmicky claim, but after three weeks of use I can honestly say my brows look fuller and have fewer sparse areas. The formula contains keratin and soy proteins – ingredients found in hair care products to encourage hair growth. For all my ladies out there who went through that phase of over plucking their brows, this product is for you! This is going to be a great product for these hot summer months to ensure your brows won’t go anywhere.

Goof Proof Brow Pencil, $30 – This brow pencil comes in 6 shades and is so easy to use. It has a tear drop shaped applicator allowing for you to easily define and fill in your brows. The pointed edge is perfect for defining as it allows you to really shape those arches, and the wider end is perfect for filling. A brow pencil this shape was completely new to me and learning how to apply a pencil with this shape took some getting used to, but I love it now! This product is water-proof and has a 12-hour wear time. I haven’t tested out it’s longevity in water, but I can definitely attest to its superior long wearing abilities. It also comes with a built in spoolie for combing out those brows and blending the product. This is going to sound crazy, but this is the best spoolie I have ever used. It has some kind of magical ability to perfectly blend everything out without removing any colour you’ve added. I would repurchase this product just for the spoolie itself.

ka-BROW Gel-Cream Brow Colour, $30 –  This is a rich gel-cream brow colour different from any brow pomade I have ever tried before. Any brow pomade I tried using prior to this one was a terrible experience. The formulas were all really wet and left me with way too much product on my brows and I looked like a crazy person. This new formula from Benefit is so different. It is a much drier consistency enabling a lot more control when picking up the product with the brush. This allows for buildable colour, so you can acheive a natural brow look (something I could never do with a pomade before), or you can get those crazy bold instagram brows if that is what you desire. I love how versatile this product is and that it can achieve so many different looks. It also has a brush built right into the cap that you can pop out and then reattach to the lid to create a handle. This product also comes in 6 shades, has a 24-hour wear time and is waterproof. This has become a staple in my everyday brow routine.

In addition to these three new products, Benefit is adding Precisely, My Brow Pencil– a skinny brow pencil in 6 shades, 3D Brow Tones Instant Color Highlights – a long wearing brow gel that adds highlights in 2 shades, Ready, Set, Brow! – a clear brow setting gel, brow grooming tools and they are adding a third shade to my all time favourite product Gimme Brow – a brow gel that adds volume with fibres. Plus they are reformulating High Brow and Brow Zings and adding additional shades to meet every skin tone and hair colour.

Benefits brow game just got real! I hope you all get a chance to check out their new products on Friday. I promise you, they do not disappoint!!

Kaitlyn xo

Monthly Must Haves: May 2016

Essie Fiji Nail Polish, Benefit Porefessional Matte Rescue, Joe Fresh Champagne Highlighter, Nyx Scult and Highlight Brow ContourMay has come to an end and I could not be more excited for June to arrive!  I have a few new products that I’ve been using during the month of May that have become favourites for me and I would love to share with you all.

Nyx Sculpt and Highlight Brow Contour – I have a confession to make… this is the first brow pencil I have ever used. I have been a huge fan of using brow powders to fill in my brows ever since I started filling in my brows, but the pencil has certainly stepped up my brow game (#browsonfleek). The main difference I have noticed in using a pencil is that my brows are a little bit bolder and much more defined, which I love. This pencil comes with a brow colour in one end and a highlight shade in the other end. I really appreciate the consistency of the pencil. The colour is very forgiving and gradually buildable. It has a fine tip which allows for hair like strokes. I also find it isn’t a super dry pencil and it glides on easily. So happy to have discovered this one in the month of May. P.S. I wear the shade Blonde/Ivory, which is best for an ash blonde brow.

Nyx Sculpt and Highlight Brow Contour Blonde/Ivory

Joe Fresh Highlighter Powder – Joe Fresh Cosmetics have recently launched within Shoppers Drug Mart and I have been using their highlighter in the shade champagne. It has been my go-to product for highlighting over the last month. It is a beautiful cool-toned pink shade. It offers the perfect everyday highlight for me. If you are someone who wants an intense highlight that can be seen from outer-space, then I don’t think this is the highlight for you. However, if you are like me and just looking for a subtle everyday glow this product is perfect. It is not overly glittery or chunky and just provides a natural luminous finish to the skin. I definitely recommend testing this guy out!

Joe Fresh Champagne Highlighter

Essie “Fiji” Nail Polish – I have been on the hunt for the perfect nude pink nail polish. It has been such a struggle to find a nude pink that doesn’t look washed out, that is opaque and doesn’t make my skin look too pink. I have been obsessed with Essie’s Fiji this month. It is the perfect opaque creamy pale pink shade. It applies so nicely and is the perfect shade of pink I have been searching for. I also have received so many compliments on it and people keep asking me who does my nails – clearly they aren’t looking close enough at my paint job.

Benefit Cosmetics Porefessional Matte Rescue – To be honest I really didn’t give this product much thought when it first launched. I already use Benefit’s Porefessional Primer and I didn’t think anything could do much better than that, but after trying their new Matte Rescue I’m hooked. It is a gel-water consistency that absorbs instantly and feels so clean and refreshing on the skin. It has mushroom extract to absorb excess oil on the skin and diamond powder to blur out the appearance of pores. I apply this product to freshly cleansed skin after moisturizing. I feel it instantly absorb into the skin and almost tighten my pores. I apply the Porefessional primer on top and I have noticed my t-zone looks significantly less oily throughout the day. I think this product is going to be a life saver as we move into the warmer months of summer!

Those are my favourite products of May. What products did you love this month?

Happy June,

Kaitlyn xo

 

Micellar Water Comparison (Bioderma, Vichy, Garnier, Marcelle and Simple)

Garnier Micellar Water, Vichy Micellar Water, Simple Skincare Micellar Water, Marcelle Micellar WaterMicellar water has been a huge part of my skincare routine for the past two years. With so many new options available at the drugstore, I decided to put some other alternatives to the test to see how they rank in comparison to my tried and true Bioderma. Let the battle of the micellar waters begin!

Vichy Purete One Step Cleansing Micellar Solution 3 in 1

The Vichy One Step Cleansing Micellar Solution claims to be a cleanser, toner and eye makeup remover. It is ultra-gentle, refreshing, purifies skin, removes makeup and soothes irritation. It attracts impurities like a magnet eliminating any need to rub or tug at the skin to remove makeup. It is ideal for all skin types and all skin concerns. Vichy states that they have a unique micellar technology which can effectively remove impurities.

Formula: The Vichy Micellar Solution has a very fresh clean scent – it is an added fragrance to the product. The list of ingredients in this micellar and the Garnier version (up next, keep reading!) are almost identical. Vichy’s micellar is tested on sensitive skin under dermatological control, hypoallergenic, paraben free and includes the Vichy Thermal Spa Water making it both soothing and fortifying.

Packaging: The packaging on this water is very similar to most on the market. It has a flip open cap with a small hole that dispenses the product when turned upside down. The one thing I did like about this bottle in particular is that it is more rectangular in shape and I felt like it was easier to pack when I have needed to take makeup somewhere and it fit better in  my makeup bag because of the shape.

Performance: This product worked extremely quickly and is the most comparable to my dear Bioderma. I could remove my entire face of makeup in about one and a half cotton pads – super impressive. The product was very soothing on the skin and left my face refreshed and clean without feeling stripped or dry. It was not irritating to the eyes or lips. I will mention that I did have a skin irritation as a result of testing out some new products recently. Normally, I would have avoided placing the micellar water on this area, but since it said it had soothing properties I decided to give it a try. It wasn’t my smartest idea and it ended up making that irritation feel worse. Overall, I did really enjoy this micellar water, it was gentle, and it did live up to it’s claims. However, I would avoid any contact with skin irritations in the future.

Garnier SkinActive Micellar Water All-In-1 Cleansing Water

The Garnier SkinActive Micellar Water claims to remove makeup, cleanse and refresh. It is a non-rinse formula safe for the face, eyes and lips. It is oil free, alcohol free and fragrance free. It is tested under Dermatological and Ophthalmological control and is non-greasy and non-comedogenic.

Formula: The formula, as previously mentioned is almost identical to Vichy’s, but there are two main differences. One, there is no fragrance to this product. And two, there is BHT in this formula (also known as butylated hydroxytoluene). It is used to help extend product shelf life and maintain product quality. You’re probably wondering why I am bringing up this long word and the reason being is some people boycott products over this ingredient due to potential side effects. I have looked into it and it is an ingredient that is regulated by Health Canada and they only allow a concentration of 0.1% or less. It is continuously being reviewed and monitored by Health Canada and they have confirmed that the amount currently found in cosmetic products is safe. You can find more details here. Based on my own research I will definitely be more aware of BHT, but I don’t plan on avoiding products with BHT in the future and it won’t stop me from reusing or repurchasing this product.

Packaging: Garnier Micellar Water has very standard packaging. It is similar to most micellar waters on the market. It has a flip cap with a small hole underneath that dispenses the product when it is flipped upside down.

Performance: The performance on this product is basically identical to Vichy’s, which isn’t surprising considering their ingredients are very similar. It took very little product to remove a full face of makeup (about one and a half cotton pads). It left no residue on the skin, no tight feeling and my skin felt clean. The only thing I didn’t find with this one that I was missing is that I didn’t feel a cooling refreshing feeling on the skin afterwards. This was a little disappointing as that is something I really enjoy in a micellar. Other than that, the performance was extremely good and very comparable to Bioderma.

Marcelle 3-in-1 Micellar Solution

The Marcelle 3-in-1 Micellar Solution claims to gently cleanse and effectively remove makeup from both the face and eyes, while soothing the skin. It is supposed to work on even the most dry, sensitive and intolerant skin. Effective on even waterproof makeup.

Formula: It has a very fresh cucumber scent, which comes from the cucumber extract included within the list of ingredients – there is no added fragrance to this product. Something I found interesting about the list of ingredients on this micellar water is that it has salicylic acid in it. This is a nice addition to the product as salicylic acid is great for improving skin texture. It is also 100% hypoallergenic, 100% perfume free, gluten free, paraben free, alcohol free, oil free, soap free, non comedogenic, recognized by the Canadian Dermatology Association and Ophthalmologist tested.

Packaging: I loooove the packaging on this product and I think every other brand should adopt this packaging. It has a pump on the top that you place your cotton over top of and then press down. As you press down, the product is dispensed and immediately absorbed into your cotton. This provides a lot better control when it comes to how much product you use because you know the exact number of pumps you need to soak your cotton and get the job done. Plus, if you’re clumsy like me, you don’t have to worry about knocking it over and spilling it everywhere as the pump makes it spill proof!

Marcelle occasionally releases bonus format sizes where you can get extra product for the same cost, or a small gift will be attached as a gift with purchase. Marcelle is great at providing really good bonus offers with their products.

Performance: It left my skin feeling clean without any residue on the skin. It provided a very cooling sensation on the skin and did not leave my skin feeling tight or stripped. It took two cotton pads to remove my full face of makeup – one for each half of my face. It did a good job at removing my makeup, however it was much faster at taking off my face makeup (foundation) versus my eye makeup (mascara). Overall, I am very happy with the performance.

Simple Skincare Cleansing Micellar Water

Simple claims that their micellar is the perfect blend of multi-vitamins. It has skin loving ingredients that will gently cleanse with removing makeup leaving the skin feeling clean and hydrated.

Formula: The Simple Micellar Water has a very light chamomile scent to it. There are no harsh chemicals to upset the skin, no artificial fragrance and no parabens. It is Dermatologist tested and non-comedogenic.

Packaging: The standard flip cap packaging – you get it by now.

Performance: Over, this was my least favourite in comparison to the rest in terms of performance. I used a lot of product and my skin still did not feel clean after. I felt like I really needed to rub my skin to get any makeup off. I was never able to remove all of my makeup with this product. It was very refreshing on the skin and hydrating. This product would be great in the morning as a super gentle cleanser, but I would not recommend it for removing makeup.

Overall, I’m pretty impressed with the other micellar waters that are out there! Vichy and Garnier tie for my first favourite followed by Marcelle and then Simple. Check out my other post about what micellar water is and how to use it here.

What’s your favourite micellar products?

Happy cleansing!

Kaitlyn xo

Nyx Highlight and Contour Pro Palette

Nyx Highlight and Contour Pro Palette

Contouring can be scary and intimidating, to say the least. I mean, we’ve all seen those thirty second instagram videos where that girl slaps all those different colours on her face, blends it with a sponge and comes out looking flawless. Instagram lies. I would classify myself as someone with a pretty decent handle on the whole makeup application thing, but even sometimes I get overwhelmed by this whole higlighting/strobing/baking/contouring thing. (Baking, in particular, didn’t go so well for me… aka I had reverse racoon eyes in photos. Yikes.)

For the last week or so, I have been testing out the Nyx Highlighting and Contour Pro Palette and it makes contouring and highlighting so easy – almost as easy as those instagram girls make it look. Nyx tries to make it easy by providing visuals on the disposable package that indicate where to put each shade. This is super helpful for beginners! The product comes with eight shades – two shimmery highlights, two matte highlights, two cool toned contour shades and two warm toned bronzer shades. Each shade is a 2.7g pan for those of you looking to compare the amount of product in this palette versus others on the market. Each pan is also removable, so as you run out of your favourites, or want to sub in a new colour you easily can.

What do I love about this palette? Well, for starters the yellow shade (Cream) has literally changed my life. This is not an exaggeration. Yellow is really good for cancelling out darkness. I have been using this to set my under eye concealer and I have never looked so well rested in my life. You wouldn’t even know that daylight savings time has just happened and I feel like I need tooth picks to prop my eyes open. I would purchase this palette just for that shade alone. Anyone struggling with concealing dark circles needs this product.

I also love the formulation of the powders. The powders are all very smooth and blend easily, making them very forgiving. The one thing I will say, is that I found the white shimmer highlight (Ice Queen) to be a little powdery. When trying to pick it up with a brush it is very easy to pick up too much product as it tends to go powdery and fall apart. However, that was the only shade that I had that problem with and if you use a light hand when picking up the product it can be avoided.

The price is also amazing! In Canada, this runs for $29.99. The colour selection is very comparable to higher end contour palettes that are over double the price. If you are someone new to contouring, and worried about making the investment in the higher end palettes, this is a great alternative. You get the same colour selection and great quality without having the break the bank.

Overall, I am really happy with this product and it will be part of my daily routine. It has all the shades I need in one place creating convenience as I don’t have to switch between two or three different products. Plus, I love how forgiving the shadows are, so if I make a mistake I can easily just blend it out and no one will know.

Swatches of Nyx Highlighters

Highlight Shades L-R: Ice Queen, Soft Light, Cream, Nectar

Facetune

Contour Shades L-R: Tan, Toffee, Sculpt, Hollow

Have you tried out any other contour or highlighting products from Nyx? I have my eye on their cream contour and highlight stick next!

Happy contouring,

Kaitlyn xo

Liquid Lipsticks That Stay All Day

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks

There is nothing I love more than a bold lip to complete any makeup look. However, there is nothing I hate more then wearing a lipstick and having to worry about it getting all over my face when I eat a meal, or all over my teeth during a conversation. One of my most embarrassing moments as a Cosmetician has to be the time when I was raving about one of our latest skincare products to a customer. After they left, I turned to one of my coworkers only for them to tell me there was lipstick all over my teeth. It is no wonder the customer left in a hurry without making a purchase. I am sure my lipstick coated pearly whites really convinced them that I am an expert in my field.

For someone who my Mom would classify as high maintenance, I am all about low maintenance beauty products. When I discovered Stila’s Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks (it is a mouth full, I know) my relationship with lipsticks went from a love hate relationship to one with a whole lot of love. I am all for any product I can swipe on in the morning that requires few, if any, touch ups. I now have six shades, one of which I own two tubes of, and I am obsessed with them. Plus, they are transfer-proof saving me from any future embarrassing run ins with customers and lipstick on my teeth.

Stila’s Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks come in twenty shades, there is a shade for basically everyone! They are a creamy-matte, full-coverage lip colour which guarantees six hours of continuous wear that will not bleed or transfer. I can personally say, I have gotten more than six hours out of this product before. They are also infused with avocado oil and vitamin E, which helps to keep the lips soft and moisturized.

What do I love most about them? Well, to start with, they literally last all day! (I guess they don’t call them Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks for nothing.) I have been wearing Carmello for about six hours now. During this time, I have gone to lunch with a friend and made a trip to the mall. So I have ate, drank and talked A LOT without having to touch it up at all. In addition to the product still looking great on my lips, it also feels great. The product still feels extremely comfortable and not drying. Sometimes, with liquid lipsticks, they can crack and the colour of your natural lip will start to show through. Or they will be so drying it looks like your lips are suffocating. This product however, is weightless, non-drying and the colour lasts. When applying it is so airy in texture you can barely feel it. It sits comfortably throughout the day without cracking, feeling heavy, tacky or sticky.

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick Swatches

The six shades I have, shown above, are Carmello (a neutral nude), Chianti (a deep plum), Baci (a nude pink), Bacca (a raspberry), Ricco (a deep red) and Patina (a dusty rose). They do dry down to a matte finish, but when I was photographing them they were still a bit wet leaving a shine.

Are you a liquid lipstick lover? Have you tried Stila’s? What is your favourite shade?

I hope your lipstick stays all day!

Kaitlyn xo