Nip + Fab Dragon’s Blood Facial Radiance Pads review, photos | One for the adventurers…

Friday, April 3, 2015

Rodial Dragon's Blood review - cleansing pads

The product: Nip + Fab Dragon’s Blood Facial Radiance Cleansing Pads

DRAGON’S BLOOD, YOU GUYS. Dragon’s blood.

Nip + Fab Dragon's Blood skincare review photos

How it works: Rodial and their budget line, Nip + Fab, currently do these really cool “dragon’s blood” products featuring the bright red resin of the Sangre de Grado (Croton lechleri) tree — which literally translates to the dragon’s blood tree. The latex sap of the Sangre de Grado is used by locals as a liquid bandage, and it has strong antioxidant properties.

These pads contain “dragon’s blood” (to plump, sculpt, and protect the skin), witch hazel (to repair broken skin and reduce swelling), salicylic acid (to open blocked pores and gently exfoliate), and hyaluronic acid (to deliver intense hydration). I mean, they basically have it all.

Rodial Nip Fab Dragon's Blood peel cleansing pads

Nip + Fab Rodial Dragon's Blood Fix Cleansing Pads review photos

How they perform: For a measly $15, you get 60 of these thin, soft, strong cleansing pads. They’re nicely saturated with product, and they remove makeup like a dream.

I’ve never been crazy about makeup wipes (though I’m testing some out right now), but these? These, I love. One thin cotton pad is more than enough to remove the makeup from your entire face, so there’s very little waste involved, and they’re both really effective and super gentle. 

I can get all of my eye and face makeup off with one of these wipes, and they leave my skin feeling super clean and exfoliated. They also (surprisingly enough) don’t sting my eye area, and I can use the bumpy side for a little extra exfoliation or the smooth side if my skin’s feeling a little sensitive.

Nip + Fab Ddragon's Blood Cleansing Pads review

The only caveat(s): I really had to stretch to find these, but the Nip + Fab Dragon’s Blood Cleansing Pads don’t smell super great. A little astringent, like a peel.

Nip + Fab Hyaluronic Acid pad review

The verdict?

To this day, I still have no idea if you’re supposed to rinse after using these (I do), but I like them. Kind of a lot, honestly.

The Nip + Fab Dragon’s Blood Cleansing Pads are a fantastic way to up the dragon content of your life, and they perform really, really well. For a gentle exfoliation that won’t leave your skin peeling (or a gentle makeup remover that’ll really clean out your pores while getting everything off super quickly), definitely give these a try.

Availability: $12.99 USD/$14.95 CAD (for 60 pads) at Shopper’s Drug Mart, Ulta, or ASOS.

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Clarins Garden Escape swatches, review, photos (+Sweet Rose, Intense Green) | Spring 2015

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Clarins Garden Escape palette review swatches photos

The products: Clarins Garden Escape 6-Colour Eye Palette, Blush Prodige in 08 Sweet Rose, and Crayon Khôl in 09 Intense Green

This spring, Clarins is thrumming with the mantra of green eyes, pink cheeks, pink lips — and softness, softness, softness.

Here are three ways to get it.

UPDATE 01/04/15: Today only, Clarins.ca is offering free shipping on all orders plus 3 free samples of your choice with code APRIL1ST! (And no, it’s not an April Fool’s Day joke.)

Clarins Garden Escape review spring 2015

Clarins Garden Escape 6-Colour Eye Palette ($45 USD/$44 CAD)

First off: the limited-edition Clarins Garden Escape 6-Colour Eye Palette Long Lasting. As you all know, I’m a sucker for Clarins’ Wet & Dry eyeshadows, and these are no exception!

With a mix of sheer/buildable satin and shimmery finishes, this palette crafts easy spring lids like a dream. My favourite shade (of course) is the taupe, but I was pretty impressed with all six of these shadows. The salmon pink in particular seems very contemporary, to me–it’s subtle, but more interesting than beige–and the dark green adds lovely depth without being too in-your-face green.

Clarins’ Wet/Dry shadows also wear pretty well on me, so these are good for the gal on the go, too. I can get 1-2 hours out of this palette without primer, which is really impressive for my lids! (Most shadows only make it to the 45 minute mark before they start to migrate.)

Clarins Garden Escape eyeshadow palette review photos

Clarins Garden Escape Wet & Dry 6-Colour Eye Palette swatches

Blush Prodige in Sweet Rose ($32 USD/$32 CAD)

Clarins Sweet Rose vs Miami Pink blush comparison

Clarins Blush Prodige in Miami Pink (L), Sweet Rose (R)

Clarins Blush Prodige review Sweet Rose

There’s also a new Clarins Blush Prodige Illuminating Cheek Colour in Sweet Rose, a pretty apricot-pink with just the faintest touch of shimmer. (Just barely any; Sweet Rose is definitely more matte than Miami Pink.) It’s a little warm for my tastes, but if you like peachy blushes, this is a good one!

(Also… I mean, the Clarins blushes pretty much get bonus points in my books just for being pretty. Those right angles! That acrylic and gold brush!)

Clarins Sweet Rose, Intense Green swatches review photos

Clarins Blush Prodige in Sweet Rose, Crayon Khôl in Intense Green swatches

Keep reading! »

Rodial Eye Sculpt, Smokey Eye Pen, Glamolash XXL review, swatches, photos | The sculpting story continues

Monday, March 30, 2015

Rodial cosmetics review makeup look

So last Thursday, I talked a little bit about Rodial, and I was basically like, “ooh, pretties, you must now look at them.”

Today, I’m still talking about Rodial, but these are the eye products — a.k.a. ones that come at a price point that you can totally justify. Let’s start right in with the one product that you NEED from this line (& may your lemming for it carry you through the week!)

Availability: Exclusive to Murale (in Canada).

Rodial Eye Sculpt eyeshadow mousse review

Buy this thing!!! » Rodial Eye Sculpt ($34 CAD)

On the whole, brown eyeshadows are not a big deal. This one, however? Totally is.

The Rodial Eye Sculpt (which only comes in one, ashy red-brown shade) is an “eyeshadow” that’s actually just sculpting mousse in disguise. Lightweight and whipped, it’s meant to do more than just sculpt your socket line — Rodial intends for it to sculpt the eye, brow, and face.

I’m too yellow/olive to use this through my brows, but this is ALL I used to sculpt my face for this post — and it’s totally all you would ever need. It lasts for ages, blends like a dream, and the tone is spot-on for an Instagram-worthy contour. 

(Plus, the heavy glass and matte black packaging is totally killer.)

 

Rodial Eye Sculpt review swatches photos

 

Rodial swatches eye sculpt, smokey eye pen, glamolash

Rodial swatches: Glamolash XXL, Smokey Eye Pen in Brown (heavily/blended), Eye Sculpt (heavily/blended)

Use it with this » Rodial Eye Smudge Brush ($28 CAD)

Rodial Eye Sculpt Brush review

With a small, fluffy brush (I used the line’s appropriately-named The Eye Sculpt Brush) and some quick blending, the Rodial Eye Sculpt mousse can totally narrow your nose, darken your lids, and turn your cheekbones into razor blades. It’s pretty impressive.

And, at $28, the brush totally fits within a budget. It’s just as soft and bouncy as the other brushes in the Rodial line up, and manages cheekbones just as well as noses.

Rodial smokey eye sculpted makeup look

Pair it with this » Glamolash XXL Mascara ($29 CAD)

Rodial Glammolash XXL mascara review

Keep reading; it’s not over yet!! »

Shu Uemura Satin Radiant Sticks in Pink, Orange Coral: swatches, review, photos

Monday, March 23, 2015

shu uemura brave beauty blush sticks review

The product: shu uemura Satin Radiant Sticks in Pink and Orange Coral

I’ve been all about stick makeup this month, so today I thought I’d share photos of one of my first cheek-stick loves: the Shu Uemura Brave Beauty Satin Radiant Sticks.

They’re not something that I was planning on reviewing, because they contain way more shimmer than I prefer, but… I mean, I’ve been wearing the pink one so often that it would basically just be wrong NOT to post about it.

So, consider this my not-rave product rave.

shu uemura pink satin radient stick blush review brave beauty

The shades: This stick is available (right now, at least; it’s limited edition from the fall) in four shades: two blushes, pictured here, and two highlighters. Orange Coral is a bright, super glowy orange with yellow/gold shimmer, silver microshimmer (for a super dewy finish), and literally no coral undertones. Pink is a gorgeous purpley pink with a cool pink sheen and silver microshimmer.

If you’re cool-toned and you’re looking for the perfect stick blush, the Pink Satin Radiant Stick is totally where it’s at. 

shu uemura pink, coral radiant stick blush swatches review

shu uemura radiant blush stick swatches – pink (blended/unblended), orange coral (unblended/blended)

shu uemura satin radient stick blush review

Heartbreak! Suspense!: So, if I’m so obsessed with these sticks, why the hesitation?

Well… for one, I’m big on totally invisible makeup, and silver shimmer doesn’t quite fit the bill. But more than that, my Pink stick doesn’t twist back down, so I have to twist it up, swipe twice, and then push it back in with my fingers. Which… is kind of icky, for travel purposes.

shu uemura pink, coral brave beauty stick blush swatches review

shu uemura brave beauty radiant blush stick swatches — pink; orange coral

The verdict?

The pros definitely outweigh the cons with these blush sticks, but for a whopping $55 CAD apiece, I expect a blush to be flawless if I’m going to recommend it to you guys. And these, with their silver shimmer and slightly flawed packaging, just aren’t flawless.

Are they pretty? Absolutely. Would I have been heartbroken if I hadn’t gotten something in that gorgeous Brave Beauty packaging? Definitely. But are these two products worth $110? Well… maybe not. I say get Pink if you’re an absolute blush fiend, but in general, I think that the Brave Beauty eyeshadow palettes are a better buy!

Availability: $55 CAD at shuuemura.ca and in select Holt Renfrew locations.

Additional photos & more »

The Body Shop Lip & Cheek Velvet Stick swatches, review, photos (& a little Smoky Poppy preview)

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Body Shop Lip Cheek Velvet Stick reviews swatches

The products: The Body Shop Lip & Cheek Velvet Sticks in Universal Shade and 40 Red

↳ Photographed with the limited-edition Smoky Poppy Body Butter ($20), which smells amazing but contains silicones, so I can’t touch it! (But seriously: amazing. It’s super sultry for a Body Shop fragrance.)

My love affair with jumbo lip pencils is a long and almost frighteningly well-documented one, but when I tried these for the first time, I actually stopped and went, “oh, cool,” for a moment.

TBS lip velvet jumbo pencil review swatches

The texture: Unlike your standard jumbo lip pencil (sheer-glossy or opaque-matte), these Lip & Cheek Velvet Sticks are exactly that: velvety. They apply with an incredibly natural finish, softly matte but not at all drying.

Unlike most mattes, though, they’re sheer — or, rather, they’ll sheer out if you blend them. Red (and I’m assuming the rest of the regular line) applies with a very medium opacity, but blends out to create the most seamless, perfect flush; the Universal Shade applies more sheerly, but in a way that’s suited well to the shade.

The Body Shop black universal Lip Cheek Stick review

The Body Shop Universal Shade Lip & Cheek Velvet Stick

The Body Shop Lip Cheek Stick swatches review universal, red

The Body Shop Lip & Cheek Velvet Sticks, swatched – Universal Shade (heavily/blended) and 40 Red (heavily/blended)

The shades: Red is a bright strawberry red, but the pH-adapting Universal Shade is the Lip & Cheek Velvet Stick that really steals the show. Purple-black in the tube, it applies as a very sheer dark purple. It’s less glossy and more plummy than Clinique’s Voluptuous Violet Chubby Stick (the closest dupe that I’ve seen), and you NEED it.

When sheered out, the Universal shade reads as a muted flush of colour, and on the lips, it’s nothing short of perfect. My natural lip colour leans a bit orange (bleh), which makes most medium/dark lip colours look punchy and ostentatious as they wear off, but this weird, pH-adjusting pencil is perfect. It darkens my natural lip colour considerably without making my lips look bright!, which–believe me–is a pretty substantial feat.

Bare lips - Korres Cherry Picked reference

Bare lips

The Body Shop Universal Lip & Cheek Stick swatches review

The Body Shop Universal Shade Lip & Cheek Velvet Stick lip swatch

The Body Shop Smoky Poppy Body Butter review

The Body Shop Smoky Poppy Body Butter

The verdict?

These sheer-matte Lip & Cheek Velvet Sticks are great both for the lips and cheeks, but it’s the black Universal Shade pencil that you really need to own. If you’ve ever been intrigued by a sheer purple lipstick, or if you’ve ever been tempted to try Clinique’s classic Black Honey, get this one instead — you won’t be disappointed. 

Availability: $15 USD/CAD at The Body Shop. Permanent.

Keep reading! »

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