Friday, May 31, 2013

Guerlain Lingerie De Peau Foundation Review

I have been playing with this foundation for about two months now. I like to take my time and really use something under a variety of conditions before I can give it my stamp of approval, so my apologies that it took this long! I filmed a video with my overall thoughts on the foundation and thought I'd add a little extra info and photos on the blog for your information.

"Draw me like one of your French girls"
The Verdict

I like this foundation a lot. I was obsessed with it upon initial application but alas, when the stars are aligned and my skin is being normal and no strange patches in sight... what's not to love? Upon further testing I can safely say that I place this foundation right along the ranks of Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation in terms of coverage, finish and ease of blending. The consistency of the liquid foundation is also quite fluid, just like Luminous Silk. I apply it with my fingers when I want a sheerer coverage, and with a synthetic kabuki brush for a more flawless finish. Concealer is almost never needed except for a bit of brightener under my eyes.

On me, this foundation lasts a tiny bit better than the Armani did, and it also contains SPF 20 which is an added bonus if you're using this during the day. They are in the exact same price range - Guerlain Lingerie De Peau being $59 (Sephora, Nordstrom), Armani is $60 (Giorgio ArmaniNordstrom). It is slightly more emollient than the Luminous Silk, which would make it more suitable for normal/combination skin that gets some dry patches. The coverage is medium and builds up nicely. It also photographs well despite its SPF.

natural day light
with flash (no powder, no concealer)

For me, this usually needs blotting and a touch of powder after a few hours since my skin tends to lean on the oily side on most days. While it does fade nicely, it does not control oils as well as more heavy-duty foundations geared towards oily/combination skins (and I don't expect it to). Covergirl Outlast, Giorgio Armani Maestro or YSL Teint Resist are more resilient if you have very oily skin.
The packaging is not travel friendly, which is also inconvenient.
Colour selection is also a big of a pain in the you-know-what. I purchased the shade 02 which matched me very well right away since it was the most neutral toned out of the bunch. However, as it dries, it changes slightly in tone and doesn't match me as perfectly as I'd like. I don't like to dock marks because of colour though, since that's quite subjective and everyone has slight variations in undertone.

This is an awesome foundation and I would definitely recommend it if 1) you have slightly dry/normal/combination skin, 2) you love foundations like GA Luminous Silk or Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua and 3) if you can find your shade.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Requested: Taupe Smoky Eyes

This week I uploaded a fashion haul video and got a lot of requests to recreate the makeup look in a video. This is it! I used exactly the same products except my skin decided to explode (thanks, hormones) and I did not use a heavy duty concealer so I can let things breathe a little bit. 

Nonetheless, the focus of this look was on the eyes, and this is the lineup of products that I used:

Base - Laura Mercier Eye Basics in Eye Bright (this sucks... I'm trying to use it up but if you have oily eyelids... save your $$!)
All over the lid - Chanel Safari 
Outer corner, lower lash line - Laura Mercier Rich Sienna (this was limited edition in the palette from a few years ago, MAC Mulch is a similar shade)
Liner - Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Eyeliner in Black
Mascara - Bourjois Volumizer

On the rest of the face:

Dior Nude Bronzer - Amber 02
Maybelline Great Lash Clear Mascara

PS: My top is H&M with a Helmut Lang bra underneath... easily the best investment I've made in a while, you can get one here.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Skincare Sunday VI: Double Masking

For quite some time now, sundays have been designated for face masks at my household. It's a day generally spent make-up free (even when I have to go in to work, I get the office to myself and I'm locked up away from society for a good 6-8 hours). Today my skin was in need of both a good purge and a boost of moisture. 

Enter the face masks:

1. Aztec Healing Clay ($6 - $10 - you can buy it here)

I got this big ol' tub from Whole Foods and it's a DIY face mask kinda thing. I blogged about it in more detail here if you care to read. It's a clay mask that you mix yourself (I used apple cider vinegar) and let it harden for about 15 minutes. It leaves the skin incredibly tight and smooth, and managed to get rid of a couple of pesky white heads I had on my chin due to stress and hormones and all those wonderful things us women have to deal with on a monthly basis.


2. Dior HydraLife Mask ($40 - you can buy it here)

To bring back the moisture to my now detoxified skin, I applied a good amount of my beloved Dior HydraLife Beauty Awakening face mask. This is a super light whipped lotion texture that sinks right into the skin like a moisturizer. It contains hyaluronic acid, amongst other goodies, and is meant to rehydrate the skin. I've been using this for a year now and I would recommend it to anyone. Has a beautiful scent as well, which makes it perfect for a little spa-like sunday treat :)

What's your sunday beauty ritual? 

Friday, May 24, 2013

A Perfect Everyday MAC Quad

I have neglected almost all eyeshadows in my collection except for this little quad I put together during the last week of April. It contains all I need for a subtle, classic, clean every day makeup look. 
These little DIY quads from MAC are so handy for traveling or any woman on the go who doesn't really have time to fuss around with a vast eyeshadow collection. I never found a "ready-made" quad (by any brand) that totally satisfies me, so the fact that these little things can be changed up to my heart's desire is even more appealing. Other brands have similar concepts (like Bobbi Brown or Laura Mercier) but MAC just does it best, in my opinion.

Enough rambling about the magic of quads - here is my mix that is perfect for everyday:

* Note: my quad was purchased years ago - MAC redesigned them this past year and they now look a lot more sleek.

1. Wedge - no lies, this is my favourite crease colour of all time. I have had brief love affairs with some Urban Decay and Bobbi Brown shadows but this little thing brings me back every time. There's just something about the tone of this brown that works with my skin tone and helps define the crease no matter what eyeshadow look I am going for.

2. Swiss Chocolate - absolutely gorgeous added to the crease if you want more warmth. Works amazingly as liner as well, especially to blend out a darker brown kohl pencil.

3. Brule - a great no-fuss base eyeshadow. Brightens up the lid. It's slightly lighter than my skin tone so I like using it to clean up the area under the brow bone.

4. Shroom - my favourite highlight eyeshadow that MAC make. Perfect for the inner corner or all over the lid for a super bright eye-opening effect.

You can get any of these items on the MAC website or from Nordstrom, amongst other retailers. They're part of the permanent collection and I don't think you could go wrong with this combo.

What are some of your favourite everyday eyeshadow combinations?

Monday, May 20, 2013

(belated) Skincare Sunday V - I'm back!

I am back after a month-long hiatus where I finished school, worked like a maniac aaaand managed to squeeze in a trip to Romania to see family for a couple of weeks.
I am so excited to get back into gear and to blog my little heart out.

Today's (well, technically yesterday's... since this is a skincare related post) topic is a type of facial cleanser that has absolutely been rocking my world for the past couple of months.
I mentioned in a previous post that I had visited a dermatologist prior to my Silk Peel and one of the things she gave me to try was a Hydroxy Foaming Cleanser that she produces at her spa. Sadly it's only carried at her office and not able to purchase online but after getting my hands on a bottle and studying the ingredients - it's pretty much identical to the Dermalogica Clearing Skin Wash.

The Dermalogica option actually ends up being cheaper than what I paid for at my med spa so rest assured I will be purchasing it soon.

Nonetheless, this post is about active ingredients and the type of cleanser - it is a gentle foaming cleanser that contains a small dose of salicylic acid combined with lactic acid. It leaves the skin feeling extremely refreshed and clean. It is most suitable for normal/oily skin types that are prone to acne and I have noticed a dramatic difference in how quick my breakouts clear out and how nice my overall skin texture has been. Especially during the summer when we all tend to get more oily, cleansers like these seem to be just what the doctor ordered (in my case... literally!)

PS: Obagi and SkinCeuticals also make similar foaming cleansers geared to maintain a clear complexion. I should also add that while these are foaming, the foaming action is very gentle and they do not contain SLS.

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