Bio Beaute Flash Perfection review, swatches | A NYE-ready review!

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Silicone-free Flash Perfection review

The product: Bio Beauté by Nuxe Flash Perfection Beautifying Serum

OH GOD IT’S THE LAST DAY OF 2015 I CAN’T HANDLE THIS HELP ME

Happy New Year’s Eve, readers! How are your holidays going?

I wasn’t really feeling a NYE makeup look this year, so I have a different New Year’s themed post for you instead: a review of this neat little Flash Perfection serum by Bio Beauté. It sounds pretty New Years Eve party-ish, right? Flawless and instant and, most importantly, luminous?

Bio Beaute Beautifying Serum review.jpg

What’s in it: This new Bio Beauté by Nuxe serum (well, not-so-new if you’re in France; I think it launched in the spring for all of you lucky ducks) is silicone-free and certified organic, and it’s lightly scented with a 100% natural rose, freesia, and raspberry fragrance. (I had to read the press release for that info — it honestly doesn’t really have much of a scent.)

What’s nifty about this serum, though, is that like products such as Deciem’s Photography Foundation and Neutrogena’s Instant Tone Corrector, it’s designed to blur out imperfections with “chameleon nacres” — basically, a light nude/peachy tint and delicate micro shimmer that instantly makes all skin tones look better.

Nuxe Flash Perfection serum swatch

But does it work? Sadly, on my skin… Not so much. It does make my skin look lovely and glowy, but it’s subtle. I was hoping Bio Beauté’s Flash Perfection would be a great pre-party product (perfect for things like New Years) because of, you know, the name, but it’s more of a lightly luminizing long term product for me. It’s still a nice serum, but didn’t really deliver on the flash!

On a dark or medium skin tone, I think you’d see more of an effect, but I don’t find myself reaching for this when I need a quick fix.

Bio Beaute By Nuxe Flash Perfection review.jpg

The verdict?

Sadly, Bio Beauté’s Flash Perfection Radiance Beautifying Serum wasn’t what I wanted it to be. It was a close thing, though — it does instantly make my skin look more luminous and smooth, but no more so than a great facial mist would have. 

However, I do think there’s a small group of people who would LOVE this product. If you really like the idea of those “instant complexion booster”-type products BUT you want something that’s (a) silicone-free or (b) truly invisible under a macro lens, this is going to be your jam. The trade-off will be that it won’t give you major results at a distance, though, so I think this one is best used daily for long-term luminosity instead! 

Availability: $37 CAD at select Shopper’s Drug Mart boutiques in Canada. (Should be available at the Beauty Boutique soon!)

Keep reading!

Pür Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup SPF 15 review, swatches, photos | Porcelain vs Fair

Monday, December 28, 2015

Pur Minerals 4 in 1 fair review swatches

Pür Minerals 4-in-1 in Fair

The product: Pür Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup Borad Spectrum SPF 15 foundation in Porcelain 

Note: These images look a little off in Chrome. To get a really good idea of what these foundation shades look like, please view this post in a different browser!

According to my editorial calendar, I’m supposed to be writing about my 2015 favourites right now. And I am, technically, but my favourites roundup is going to have to wait just one more day, because this stuff? This stuff is too good for me to not blog about for even just one more minute.

The newly-reformulated Pür Minerals 4-in-1 foundation is, to put it simply, my favourite product of the year. 

Pur Minerals 4 in 1 pressed mineral makeup review

Pur Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup SPF 15 in Porcelain

The formula: I’ve never found a powder foundation that has been just right for me before, so Pür Mineral’s 4-in-1 is kind of like my unicorn product. It kicks up a lot of dust when you pick up product, which is my only complaint about the formula, but it’s lovely — it has just the right amount of medium coverage, and its skin-like satin finish both looks and feels like you’re wearing almost nothing at all.

Pür Minerals’ 4-in-1 foundation is the kind of product that’s so good that it seems almost boring, but where it differs from other powder foundations is where it really shines. (Jayne went through a whopping three pans of the original 4-in-1, which I think really says something about how great it is!!)

I tried both Porcelain and Fair for this review, and weirdly enough, the formula is different for Porcelain vs. the rest of the line. Both formulas wear very well, in my opinion, but I did find that Fair oxidized a bit on me after about an hour!

Pur Minerals foundation review

Pur Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup SPF 15 in Porcelain Pur Minerals Porcelain vs Fair review swatches

Pur Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup SPF 15 in Porcelain (L) and Fair (R)

What makes the 4-in-1 so special: My #1 pet peeve with foundations of any kind is that they can apply just fine, but then feel almost gritty by midday–sort of like a sunscreen, you know? Where they look fine, but if you touch your face with your hands, it feels dirty.

The Pür powder foundation feels velvety from application to removal, though, and the range runs really light — Porcelain is a perfect match for my skintone (I can even use a dense brush with it to apply as concealer), meaning it runs lighter than even the Make Up For Ever foundation range.

(MAC, unfortunately, don’t offer any silicone-free foundations, and mineral lines like Bare Escentuals would need to add another 1-2 light shades before I could find a match.)

Pur Minerals 4 in 1 powder porcelain, fair swatches review

Pur Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup SPF 15 swatched: Porcelain, Fair

How I apply: I’ve been applying my 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Powder with the line’s Chisel Foundation Brush, but the brush is a little rough. Application is a breeze, though (I can finish my entire face in under 60 seconds), and if I want a completely invisible finish, all I have to do is spritz my face with one of my MIYU Beauty Essences and let it dry.

Pür Minerals is launching a number of new brushes in March (you heard it here first!) including a really soft-looking powder foundation brush, but I would love to hear your brush recommendations in the meantime!!

Pur Minerals Pressed Mineral Makeup foundation review

Pur Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup SPF 15 in Porcelain, Fair

The verdict?

I’ve never really fallen in love with a foundation before. I’ve liked products (timeBalm and Sensual Skin Enhancer come to mind), but this–this is a whole other level.

The Pür Minerals 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup really does make me look like I’ve applied a flawless layer of foundation, concealer, and powder in under a minute (I’ve timed it), and it comes with unnoticeable SPF 15 (thanks to weightless titanium dioxide) and a silicone-, fragrance-, and paraben-free formula. 

I wish that this was a little less than $32, of course, but for the perfect shade, formula, and packaging, I’m willing to pay it!

Availability: $28 USD/$32 CAD at Shopper’s Drug Mart (and online at their Beauty Boutique!), Ulta, Beauty.com, and Pür Minerals.

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Burberry Beauty at Nordstrom Vancouver, The Bay, & Sephora

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Burberry Beauty launches Canada Vancouver Nordstrom

I remember when Burberry Beauty first stepped onto the scene. It wasn’t too long ago, but the brand was one of the first high fashion lines (other than Chanel, of course) to step outside of fragrance and start producing luxury cosmetics, too.

And, despite making up just a tiny morsel of the brand’s overall sales, the Burberry cosmetics line has done well for itself–well enough that other fashion brands, like Gucci and Michael Kors, have followed suit. Bloggers and consumers alike have been smitten with the products’ smooth formulas and chic packaging for the past half-decade, and the love just doesn’t seem to be waning.

Burberry Ash Brown eyebrow definer review

Burberry Effortless Eyebrow Definer in Ash Brown ($36 CAD)

Burberry Poppy Black nail polish review

Burberry Nail Polish in Poppy Black ($23 CAD)

So, dear reader, it’s been particularly exciting to slowly watch Burberry cosmetics become available in person across Canada this year.

There are quite a few high-end makeup brands that are next to impossible to find in Canada, but you can now find Burberry Beauty at the brand-new Nordstrom in Vancouver. Or, if you’re outside of Vancouver, look for the brand at Nordstrom Ottawa, select Hudson’s Bay locations, and online at thebay.com and sephora.ca.

Happy shopping!

Burberry Khaki Green Nail Polish review

Burberry Nail Polish in Khaki Green ($23 CAD limited edition)

Burberry kip cheek bloom poppy review

Burberry Lip & Cheek Bloom in Poppy ($33 CAD)

Photographed here: Burberry Cashmere Foundation in Porcelain ($60 CAD), Lip Velvet in Honeysuckle ($38 CAD), Lip & Cheek Bloom in Poppy ($33 CAD), Effortless Eyebrow Definer in Ash Brown ($36 CAD).

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Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré review | The BEST primer for dry skin

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre review moisturizer

The product: Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré Nourishing Moisturizer

I don’t typically buy products due to hype, but when the Pixiwoo sisters say something is really good… I have a tendency to believe them & buy. (What? Anyone with that much makeup prowess and standards high enough to make my favourite brush range is to be trusted implicitly.)

Net a Porter Embryolisse review

The Lait-Crème magic 

I was pulled to the Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré because it was one of the only cult-followed, silicone-free moisturizers that I had left to try, but the real magic (and the thing that pulls most people in) is how brilliantly it works as a primer.

This “milk-cream” formula is the silkiest skincare product I’ve ever tried, and creates a gorgeous, hydrating veil over my dry skin. It does a better job smoothing over my dry patches than even the popular Korres silicone-free primers (available at Beautylish), and multi-functions as a moisturizer and primer in one.

Embryolisse review lait creme concentre

Embryolisse says the Lait-Crème Concentré can be used on all skin types as a moisturizer, makeup remover, mask, after-shave cream, or baby-care product, but I think where it really shines is as a moisturizing primer. I use it on my “bad skin days” and whenever I feel like giving my skin a bit of a treat; with its French pharmacy packaging and subtly perfumed formula, it feels simultaneously utilitarian and luxurious. 

Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre primer review

The verdict?

Embryolisse’s Lait-Crème Concentré is French pharmacy goodness at its best. I love the silky, glossy texture of this moisturizer, and it is both the best primer I have ever found for dry skin and the best silicone-free primer I’ve ever tried.

To top it all off, the Lait-Crème Concentré is delicately scented and extremely affordable, and currently ships free at both Look Fantastic and Birchbox (US)!

Availability: 30 ml for $16 USD at Net-A-Porter, $20 with free shipping at Look Fantastic (use code LFNEW for 10% off); $16 USD with free shipping at Birchbox; $16 at Beautylish.

Keep reading! »

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD (shade Y225=117) foundation photos, launch party

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD liquid stick foundation range shades

While I was in Toronto this summer, I got to check out a pretty cool new product: the new Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation ($50 CAD), which launched this July in liquid format, and the Ultra HD Invisible Cover Stick Foundation ($50 CAD), which launches this month.

I wanted to share a really quick little recap of the event, because (a) blogger love!, and (b) the new foundations are pretty darn cool.

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD foundation review, stick foundation

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD liquid & stick/cream foundations

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD steph fun size beauty

I’ll just be over here, pretending to be one of the cool girls… | with Zubie, Steph, and Jenn

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Amy Bratty B

Amy (who just started Bratty B)! I can’t even put into words how much I love this girl.

Made for use with 4K camera technology, the new Ultra HD foundations are an update on Make Up For Ever’s original HD foundation, which has been the top selling foundation at North American Sephoras since it launched in 2008. (Unfortunately, like the original, both of these foundations contain silicones!)

The key makeup artist at the event demonstrated both of the new “invisible” foundations on his model Ashley, pairing them with the brand’s correcting primers — the translucent Skin Equalizer primer in the centre of the face to reflect and bounce light, plus the yellow primer to add brightness.

UltraHDGeneration launch party

The technology: the new Ultra HD foundations use hyaluronic spheres to make the foundation blend automatically, so the makeup artist at the event recommended a bit of a traditional application method: apply (2 pumps of the liquid is enough for full coverage), let bake, then blend. 

The foundations also include light-diffusing sericite, made to “act like an Instagram filter!” as well as amino acid coated pigments, which blur flaws as they cover. They pair well with the brand’s matte skin equalizer, too: just pat it on top (yes, on top!) of your foundation when you’re finishing up your makeup.

MUFE Ultra HD launch party

The utterly gorgeous Chelle, from Makeup Your Mind

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Jenn a beautiful zen

Jenn, as in “A Beautiful Zen Jenn”! (The beauty blogging world has more Jenns than we know what to do with.) I’m so sad that this girl isn’t gonna be there the next time I go to TO :(

MUFE Ultra HD Zubie

Zubie is pretty much the coolest cool girl. She basically always (ALWAYS) looks like she’s just fallen out of a photoshoot.

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD foundation 117 y225 review photos

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Liquid Foundation in Y225 (117 shade match)

The formulas: Make Up For Ever recommends their Ultra HD Liquid Foundation for a natural finish in a lightweight, oil-free formula, and their Ultra HD Stick Foundation for medium-full coverage, touch-ups, and contouring.

The liquid, which is lighter than the original HD liquid, is supposed to be better for normal to oily skin, while the super-smooth stick formula is targeted toward normal to dry skin.

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD stick foundation 117 225 review photos

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Stick Foundation in Y225 (117 shade match)

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD launch party shades

The shades: The new foundations have a wider shade range than the original, and a new shade numbering system to go with it. I was matched to Y225 Marble (the old 117) in my summer tan, which was the brand’s lightest yellow-based shade… until now.

Y225 is still the lightest shade in the stick foundation, but for the super-pale guys and gals out there, Make Up For Ever now also offers Y215 Yellow Alabaster and Y205 Alabaster in liquid format! (The pink-based equivalents are R210 Pink Alabaster and R220 Pink Porcelain.) The stick foundation will be available in 15 shades, and the Ultra HD liquid is available in a whopping 40 shades

Additional photos & more »

Reversa Anti-Redness Soothing Care moisturizer review, photos | Currently obsessed with…

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Reversa anti-redness soothing care review

The product: Reversa Anti-Redness Soothing Care moisturizer

So, right now, I’m super into Reversa’s Anti-Redness Soothing Care moisturizer. Made for sensitive/reactive skin (that’s me!), it’s formulated to hit redness on two fronts: one, to reduce flushing and overall redness, and two, to tone down redness with its sheer green tint.

Reversa anti-redness moisturizer review

The formula: Reversa’s Anti-Redness Soothing Care is formulated with Quassia amara extract and vitamin B3 to reduce the appearance of facial redness while replenishing the skin’s moisture barrier. And I… I mean, I really like it.

It’s thin, unscented, and hydrating, and it feels very “neutral” going on — there’s nothing heavy or irritating about it, and no matter how dry my face is, it never makes it sting. I do add a drop or two of oil to this when I use it, but for those with normal to oily skin, this texture will be perfect for you. (My oily-skinned partner really likes the texture of this one!)

Plus, as a few extra cherries on top, it’s silicone- and paraben-free, and it’s made in Canada.

Reversa Anti-Redness Soothing Care swatch

The tint: Okay, okay, okay. So: what makes this moisturizer really special is the green tint that it has to it. And I know; a lot of brands do this, but Reversa has done it well.

The green tinge to this fluid knocks out some of redness in my skin (not all, but a good amount of it), and as an extra-super-bonus, it evens out all of my other imperfections, too. Plus, it never looks chalky, and it doesn’t change the overall hue of my skin — which can be tricky, as I’m already pretty olive to begin with.

Reversa anti-redness soothing care moisturizer review

The verdict?

I can’t remember the last time I said this about a treatment product, but Reversa’s Anti-Redness Soothing Care gets a nice, big, resounding YES! from me! It’s a lovely, lightweight moisturizer that will work well for all skin types and gently treats both the signs and symptoms of redness.

Plus, it very subtly evens out skintone, which I think all of us (redness problems or or not) can use. No, it’s not going to magically erase redness like a high-coverage foundation, but it does a great job of what it’s made for!

Availability: $34 CAD online at Reversa.ca and in Shopper’s Drug Mart locations across Canada. (Frequently on sale at Shopper’s — the last time I was in, it was on for $25.49 CAD all week!)

Keep reading! »

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