Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sunday Detox

Sundays are for brunches, communal hangovers, and catching up on last week's TV.  

Mine are, anyway. After brunch, I usually head home for my TV marathon, which I think is the best time for a little beauty pamper.  I can't sit still and watch a TV show unless something keeps me there, so I take this time to paint my nails, marinate in various body products a face mask.

My favourite kind have to be peeling/cleansing/extracting/brightening masks.  There's just something incredibly satisfying about taking off the last vestiges of a deep cleansing mask to reveal new, glowing skin.  I usually like clay masks (as evidenced by two out of three here), with the occasional glycolic or enzyme peek mask to prep my skin if it's feeling really clogged.  Those of you with sensitive skin, I advise against following a peeling mask with a clay one -- it can really tear up your skin.

That little round pot labelled Indian Healing Clay is a decant of the strongest mask I've ever used.  When my skin is troubled, I mix it with a little apple cider vinegar or water for an all-over mask or an insanely strong spot treatment.  I apply it with an old foundation brush and sit until I feel like it's completely dried.  Again, for sensitive skin, mix with water and apply a very thin layer.  You can actually feel the pulling sensation on your skin, and it leaves me red for a while, so I only use this at night.  Once you remove it and your skin calms down, it leaves the most beautiful matte finish.

Queen Helene's Mint Julep Masque has a ridiculously high rating on Make Up Alley, as it should. If you're too lazy to mix up the Indian Healing Clay (as I often am), consider this a pre-mixed version.  It's not quite as strong as the other one, but most people will still benefit from its detox power.  Sometimes I'll even smooth a thin layer over my face in the morning and wash it off right away, like a cleanser.  This takes about 20 minutes to dry.

To give my skin a break from the pore-vacuuming action, I turn to Caudalie's Vinoperfect Enzymatic Peeling Masque.  I turn to this when I have more of a general complexion problem, versus actual breakouts.  It comes out as a white paste that dries a little chalky, but it's the nicest 5-minute boost for your skin.  In fact, it's what I have on my skin at this very moment.  This is the priciest of the three, but I think that's fairly normal for an enzyme treatment.  This gives less of a flat, matte finish than the other two and leaves your skin radiant.

To remove all my masks, I run a muslin cloth under running lukewarm water and gently buff it off in a broad sweeping motion.  Since these are cleansing masks, try not to buff them off in small circles or it could take off more skin than you're able to handle.

What's your Sunday routine?

Monday, November 19, 2012

IMATS 2012 -- Haul, Thoughts and Swatches

This Saturday, Tod and I made our way to Beauty Mecca -- well, Toronto version, as I think the goal is to get to New York or LA.  I can't even let myself dream about that just yet.

A couple things about IMATS Toronto...

  • The TTC most certainly does not go directly to the Toronto Congress Centre, no matter what it tells you.  The walk from the bus isn't all that bad though.
  • Don't go early.  I accidentally kept Tod up late the night before and couldn't get her to wake up, but that turned out to be a blessing, as we managed to avoid the crazy registration lines.
  • People are shockingly nice when it comes to crowding.  Yes, they crowd, they take wayyyy too long to swatch, but they'll move if you ask nicely.  I even had a woman mix me a lip colour while we were waiting to get our orders filled at OCC.
  • Eve Pearl looks much younger in person than she does on camera.
  • There are some truly awful brush booths.
  • Z-palettes were conspicuously absent!
Check out the video below so you can hear a little more about the products, why I wanted them, etc.

And my obligatory swatch photo...

L - R:  OCC Lip Tar in NSFW, MUFE eye shadow refill in #09, MUFE HD blush in 07 heavy swatch, blended out, MUFE HD foundation in N123

Did anyone else go to IMATS?  What did you get?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

New stuff

It's been an embarrassing amount of time since my last video, so I thought I'd do a little of everything with Tod.  Check it out -- part haul, part mini-review, part look.  Also very much taking video/post requests, so please feel free to comment below!

Pardon my head being partially cut off for 95% of the video, I'm so rusty!

Also, this video took me a day and a half to upload.  I can't figure out how to turn off the HD setting on my camera to help things along, but rest assured, more videos will come when I do!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

My recommendations for Sephora's VIB 2012

After much strife with this year's Friends and Family sale, Sephora has finally released its VIB dates.  Those of you who are VIBs will know that the sale starts tomorrow and goes until the 12th, offering a 20% in-store discount.

I've always maintained that you should do all of your Sephora shopping at this time. In fact, if you can, you should try to become a VIB for the next year by making your $350 purchase -- you'll receive $437.50 worth of stuff. You could, in theory, purchase 14 Clarisonic heads.  They won't spoil and they'll be useful as long as you don't abandon your Clarisonic.

That said, I haven't been using my Clarisonic much lately, so I've compiled a list of things that I would or will likely purchase...

1.  Tools:  If you don't have a Clarisonic, a GHD, or any of these big-ticket items, now would be the time to invest.  20% off a $225 flat iron is pretty significant, and GHDs never go on sale at Sephora.  Come to think of it...nothing ever goes on sale at Sephora unless the brand is being discontinued at the store.  This Clarisonic set with travel-sized Josie Maran products seems like a pretty sweet deal.

 2.  Gift Sets and Value Palettes:  There's nothing more delicious than getting a discount on an already (sort of) discounted item.  I'm personally eyeing the Super Stars set (Exfolikate and a full-sized NARS Orgasm?  Count me in.) and the Give Me Some Lip Sephora Favourites.  If nothing else, think of the fact that you're purchasing a Tarte Matte LipSurgence for $24, when they regularly retail for $31.

3. Things you already love: If you know you're going to repurchase your favourite red lipstick or your daily brow pencil, you may as well get one (or three) while your discount is active.  Some of my favourites include Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage concealer and Caudalie Beauty Elixir.  And the aforementioned Clarisonic Sensitive brush head.

What is everyone else purchasing from this year's F&F?  Leave it in the comments so I can peruse!