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Archive for November, 2013

Shiseido White Lucent Brightening 1-2-3 Kit

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Shiseido Brightening 1-2-3 Kit - all three bottles
Brighten up with Shiseido’s White Lucent Brightening 1-2-3 kit!

I initially bought this kit when I was away on a cruise last year and found this in the duty free shop on one of the islands. For $49.50US and no tax, how could I pass up the chance to try out this line? I picked it up quickly, then stored it in my backup stash until a couple months ago. Yes, I tend to squirrel away all my purchases for use at a later date.

The White Lucent line contains a multi-action brightening system, which aims to target dark spots and give a glowing, more luminous complexion. In other words, no more dull skin!

 

The Packaging

Shiseido Brightening 1-2-3 Kit - Cleansing foam nozzle
Cleansing foam – 83ml

The cleansing foam is presented in a tube format, with the cap serving as the base. I prefer when I can store tubes in this manner because gravity helps the product come down to the bottom so I don’t have to persistently squeeze the tube from top to bottom just to get some product out. The cap is a simple screw on, with a reflective silver band around the cap. This is probably a nod to the “brightening” aspect of the line. The tube itself is white with a very pale pink cap. When reaching the end of the tube, I did have to hold the top of the tube and “fling” it while holding on, to help the product gather at the bottom. This, I found, was the most efficient way of getting every last bit of product from the tube.

 

Shiseido Brightening 1-2-3 Kit - Balancing Softener Enriched nozzle
Balancing Softener Enriched W – 100ml

This is a sturdy white bottle with a pale pink cap. The balancing softener enriched w has a plastic top with a very small opening, so that you can either drip the product out lightly tap it against a cotton pad to get it out. When you hold it upside down, the softener has a slow drip so there is a lot of control over how much you want to use.

 

Shiseido Brightening 1-2-3 Kit - Protective Emulsion SPF15 nozzle
Protective Emulsion W SPF15 – 30ml

The protective emulsion w spf15 continues the theme of white bottle and pale pink cap. The difference is that the plastic cap has a bigger hold to allow for a better flow of product out of the hole. Given that it’s much thicker than the softener, a larger hole is needed.

 

The Product

Shiseido Brightening 1-2-3 Kit - foaming cleanser swatch
Cleansing foam swatch

The cleansing foam comes out white and has a pearly sheen to it. Believe me when I say a little bit goes a long way. A small pea’s worth is enough to clean your entire face. I just squeeze it out of the tube, rub it between my finger tips and apply it to my wet face in a circular motion. It lathers up nicely (but not overly so). Be careful not to get any in your eyes because it packs a pretty intense sting. After rinsing it off, my skin is squeaky clean, with no oily residue whatsoever. Some people may not like this feeling, but I personally like this feeling. It leaves a clean canvas for my serums and creams to absorb better.

 

Obviously, I don’t have a swatch for the balancing softener enriched w because it’s a clear liquid. What I can tell you is that it has a really pleasant smell that’s floral in nature. I did have a little trouble figuring out just how much to use on my cotton pad. My advice is to start small and add more if you need to! Don’t soak the cotton pad or you’ll waste valuable product! I found that after the cleansing foam, the softener relaxed my skin and really did make it feel softer. There was no cooling sensation at all. It feels the same as my Bioderma Sensibio but the softener makes my skin feel much softer.

 

Shiseido Brightening 1-2-3 Kit - Protective Emulsion SPF15 swatch
Protective Emulsion W SPF15 swatch

The protective emulsion w spf15 is a thicker lotion, especially since it contains some sunscreen. Because of this, you do have to shake the bottle before pouring some out, lest you get only one or the other. Even though the SPF is pretty low, I find it’s pretty useful for a shift worker like me. I hardly ever see the sun, and the little time I have getting to and from the subway station to work and home is very short. For those who want more coverage, I would suggest using an additional sunscreen on top of this. Due to its sunscreen content, I only used this during the day.

The amount I used for my face is just a little bit bigger than a nickel. You do need to slowly work it in because of the white streaks of sunscreen. It absorbs fairly quickly and any residual left on my fingers I used for my neck. It has that ever so slightly sticky feeling of sunscreen but I can live with it. If it can both moisturize and sun protect at the same time (and thus, save me that extra couple of minutes in the morning), I’m willing to overlook it. There is a slight sheen to my face afterwards but since I use a BB cream and some powder afterwards, it doesn’t bother me.

 

The Verdict

For a kit to trial three items from a skincare line, this is a really good value! I’ve found that I love the softener, the cleansing foam works really well with the softener, and the emulsion is perfect for my days. After using this for just over a month, I did notice that my skin was brighter and less dull. It felt well hydrated and no signs of dryness. Would I purchase this again? Of course! For my first Shiseido skincare trial, I am very happy with it.

 

Where to Buy

Written by Jessica

November 28th, 2013 at 11:48 pm

Posted in Beauty,skincare

Skinny Cow Dream Clusters and Heavenly Crisp

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I opened my door today to find a nice surprise at my doorstep: it was Influenster‘s first Canadian Vox Box, aptly named #MapleVoxBox! I had signed up for a chance to be picked for Influenster’s first foray into Canadian territory, but didn’t hear anything back so I figured I wasn’t chosen. Imagine my surprise when I found it this morning!

 

Skinny Cow - Dreamy Clusters and Heavenly Crisp
Skinny Cow’s Dreamy Clusters and Heavenly Crisp

Let’s start with Skinny Cow. According to their website, they were originally founded in 1991 in Jersey under the name Silhouette. They were acquired by Nestlé in 2004 and relaunched as Skinny Cow. They are known to have decadent and indulgent snacks but with much less calories. The two I received are Dreamy Clusters and Heavenly Crisp.

 

Skinny Cow - Dreamy Clusters - pieces
Dreamy Clusters – $1.29 each | $4.29 for a 4-pack

Each bag of Dreamy Clusters contain 5 pieces (at least in my bag) and as a whole, are 120 calories. These remind me greatly of Nestlé Crunch, the milk chocolate bar with crisped rice mixed in. Even the sweetness taste the same to me.

Skinny Cow - Dreamy Clusters - bite
After one bite

The only difference is that Dreamy Clusters also has some caramel in it, so each bite has a little bit of chew factor to it. It’s too bad that there’s so little in each pack but I supposed this is how you get portion control. I don’t think I’d have the self control to have a big bag and only take 5 out. To be honest, who really has THAT much self control anyways?

 

Skinny Cow - Heavenly Crisp - bar
Heavenly Crisp – $1.29 each | $4.29 for a 4-pack

Next up is Heavenly Crisp. It touts itself as only 100 calories per bar.

Skinny Cow - Heavenly Crisp - half
Halfsies!

As you can see above, the bar consists of 3 wafers with a thin layer of chocolate crème flavour and covered with milk chocolate. I think the only thing I’m concerned about is the “chocolate crème flavour”. If it’s a flavour and not actually chocolate crème, then what is it??

It’s actually very light and definitely less sweet than Dream Clusters. It reminds me a lot of the wafer snacks that you can buy at the asian grocery stores, except with a little more chocolate flavour to them. They’re pretty good, but not that filling. The Dream Clusters would be more filling than this.

 

Have you ever tried Skinny Cow products before? What have you tried and how do you like it?

 

voxbox-blogimage-popup2 **I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. I was not compensated in any way. My opinions are entirely my own.***

Written by Jessica

November 27th, 2013 at 9:30 pm

Touhenboku Ramen

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I met up with D for a lunch date and we decided to try Toronto’s newest ramen offering, Touhenboku Ramen. Before we had even gone, several things had stood out for me. First of all, they make their ramen in house, every day, multiple times a day. Second, they offer a chicken based broth instead of a pork one that everyone else has. This is a pretty smart move considering their ramen can now cater to the crowd of non-pork eaters.

The other neat thing is how Touhenboku strives for authenticity. In addition to making all their ramen in house, their ramen bowls are custom made porcelain bowls (to keep the ramen hot longer), their chopsticks are imported from Japan, and they also serve Japanese desserts.

 

The Atmosphere

There’s a cute mascot in the front window when you arrive.

 

Touhenboku Ramen - Tomo the mascot
Tomo the mascot!

He’s a cute log with a bowl of hot steaming ramen on his head. I’ve seen some pictures of people posing with a full size costumed Tomo, but he was not there that day.

The space is small. There’s tables on either side of the space along with single seating right up against the kitchen where the kitchen staff make the ramen to order. If you’re looking to get a table without the lineup, go before noon. I met D there for 11:30am and we walked right in and got a seat. By the time we finished (which was just past noon), there was already a lineup out the door.

Behind the kitchen houses the ramen machine!

 

Touhenboku Ramen - ramen machine
This powerhouse ramen machine costs $40,000.

Lucky for D and I, we were able to witness ramen being made! The person making ramen that day was Zuimei, the owner of Touhenboku ramen. Aside from him, the only other person who makes ramen is Keiichi, who was actually off that day.

 

Touhenboku Ramen - making ramen 1

After mixing the right amounts of ramen ingredients together, this machine sifts and mixes them together. Several times during the mixing, Zuimei opened up the machine to feel the consistency of the mix. Too dry and you need to add more water. Too moist and you need more flour. Ramen making is complex, he explains, and is also dependent on the weather.

Once the mix is just right, he flips the bin down (about to flip it in the above picture) into the bin below. Then the bin is transferred to up top to use with the machine.

 

Touhenboku Ramen - making ramen 2

Here, Zuimei feeds the dough mix through the machine to form pressed sheets of ramen dough. The dough is pulled up and rolled around a rolling pin. As more dough is fed into the machine, the sheet automatically rolls around the rolling pin. There is enough dough mix to feed through the machine to wrap around two rolling pins.

 

Touhenboku Ramen - making ramen 3

You can see here the dough wrapping around the rolling pin gets bigger and bigger.

 

Touhenboku Ramen - making ramen 4

After all the dough is fed through and is wrapped around two rolling pins, both pins are brought to the top. The dough sheets from both pins are fed through the machine again, and it is pressed together into one. Once again, the dough will wrap around 2 rolling pins.

Zuimei explains that he pressed the dough together like this through the machine 5 times. Each time the dough is pressed, the dough becomes smoother and smoother. It starts out rough like an old person, until finally the dough will be as smooth as a baby’s bottom. I kid you not these are his words!

 

Touhenboku Ramen - Zuimei making ramen!
Happy Zuimei making ramen!

I didn’t stay long enough to watch the dough being cut into ramen noodles, but the process of watching the dough go through was a really neat experience. Everything is watched and felt carefully. Each time ramen is made, it makes approximately 70 servings. When asked how many times a day ramen is made, Zuimei says sometimes 5 or 6 times a day. That’s a whole lot of ramen!

Zuimei explains that he will eventually have glass to enclose the area so people can still watch the process. The area needs to be under strict temperature control and with the area so open, it’s hard to regulate. It’s too bad there’s not enough space in the front window to show off the machine in action because that could really draw people in from the streets.

 

The Food

Touhenboku Ramen - original with sea salt and rich pork
Original Touhenboku ramen with sea salt and rich pork – $10.50

I ordered the original touhenboku ramen. There are several ways to customize it. The base both is a rich creamy chicken and you can flavour it with either sea salt (shio) or soy sauce (shoyu). I picked shio. The next option is your meat topping: rich pork, lean pork, or chicken chasu. I’ve always been a rich pork kind of girl so that was my pick. The last option is your noodle thickness or which there are two: thin or thick. I picked thick. Altogether, the bowl is served with half a boiled egg, a sheet of seaweed, kikurage (wood ear) mushrooms, and green onions.

What did I think of my ramen choice? Oh it was good. It was delicious. The broth itself is really thick and rich, something I didn’t expect from a chicken based broth. It wasn’t overly salty which is really important, and the flavours in the broth were amazing. I wish I could say I emptied the bowl but the broth is too rich for that, and I could only drink as much as I was slurping noodles. The rich pork pretty much melted in your mouth. I only wish it wasn’t sliced so thinly. The noodles had a great chewy consistency, and picked up the broth really well. Even though slurping is encouraged, I couldn’t slurp without getting broth on my glasses on splashing all over my face. Sorry Tomo!

 

The Verdict

For freshly made ramen in house with a great chicken broth, come to Touhenboku Ramen! When I come back, I want to try their chin-tan ramen, which is a light and clear chicken broth. I also want to try karaage (my favourite appetizer when going out for ramen!) and some desserts. I would have this visit but I was so full from the richness of the broth. I’ll definitely be coming back. Hopefully I can meet Tomo next time!

 

The Place

Touhenboku Ramen
261 Queen St W
Toronto, ON
416-596-8080

Written by Jessica

November 22nd, 2013 at 6:50 pm

Posted in Food,Restaurant

Emma’s Country Kitchen

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Mr. Pixelbunny and I had a day off from work to get some important errands done and after a morning of running around, we decided we’d have brunch/early lunch. Off we went to Emma’s Country Kitchen. We were drawn by the fact that they use local produce and local products from local vendors. Basically, a home grown establishment that supports locally. The other neat thing is that Emma’s Country Kitchen is a tribute to the original Emma’s Country Kitchen, which was owned by the grandmother of one of the owners.

 

The Atmosphere

Emma's Country Kitchen - restaurant front
View of the front

When you walk in,  you really do get a sense of a rural country kitchen – yellow painted walls, some exposed brick walls in the nook beneath the stairs, wooden tables and chairs, an old retro radio on the countertop, and some other old artifacts decorating the place.

 

Emma's Country Kitchen - bar
The bar

The bar is where the coffee/tea are made, as well as housing the day’s freshly baked goods under a glass dome. While we were seated, we watched people come in front the streets, pick up a coffee and baked good, then continue on with their day. Business is steady, even for a regular weekday.

 

Emma's Country Kitchen - tall table
Mini tables

For those that only want a quick drink and snack, there are several of these tall, mini tables with bar stools available.

 

Emma's Country Kitchen - table condiments
Table condiments

Even the table condiments had a country kitchen flair to it.  The plaid lining on the mason jar? Very cute.

 

Emma's Country Kitchen - chandelier
What an amazing looking chandelier!

And if you ever run out of utensils, all you had to do was look up. This is one of the most unique looking chandeliers that I had ever seen! The best part is that it totally fits in with this establishment.

 

The Food

Emma's Country Kitchen - menu
Menu for Oct 24, 2012

From the looks of the menu, these are printed daily as evidenced on the bottom right corner – it’s dated! Same date as the day I went. Other than the standard menu items, their daily specials are incorporated too. And if that wasn’t enough, there’s a chalkboard stand outside the door listing that day’s specials, so it can entice you to come in and eat!

 

Emma's Country Kitchen - The Classic Breakfast with house smoked bacon
The Classic – $10

Since we were coming for brunch, I had to order a breakfast item. So I picked The Classic. I ordered my eggs over easy, with two slices of house cured bacon, griddled red skinned potatoes, and two slices of oat and honey whole wheat bread. My eggs were awesome with the yolks still runny and the whites nice and slippery. The house cured bacon was crispy and full of bacon flavour, yet not overly salty. The toast was light and airy, with a slight taste of honey and oats sprinkled on the top crust. It soaked up my broken egg yolk very nicely. The potatoes were done perfectly, not slathered in copious amounts of oil and lightly seasoned with dry herbs. A orange slide and half a strawberry garnish my plate.

 

Emma's Country Kitchen - The Classic Breakfast with sage and onion sausage
The Classic – $10

Mr. Pixelbunny ordered essentially the same thing, except his choices were a little different. His eggs were sunny side up (don’t they look gorgeous?), two sage and onion sausage patties, girddled red skinned potatoes, and two slices of caraway rye. The sage and onion patties were very tasty with a distinct sage flavour. The onion isn’t as prominent, but it’s probably because it’s mixed together so finely with the meat that it’s hard to distinguish between the two. The patties were slightly dry, however being that they were thin, it’s likely difficult to cook thoroughly without drying them out a little bit. The caraway rye is a denser bread, and definitely more chewy than my oat and honey whole wheat. An orange slice and half a strawberry also garnished this plate.

One thing I wanted to add was when I ordered hot water to drink. It was cold out, so I just wanted something to warm up. The cup that came had a pretty strong coffee taste. When I asked if I could get another cup, I was told that they’re boiled in the same pot but he would try to boil another one for me. The second cup still had a coffee taste to the water, and by that time, I had already drank Mr. Pixelbunny’s glass of cold water. The server was very apologetic and said he could get the kitchen to boil me another one from there, but I felt bad for making them go through so much extra work. So even though I didn’t get to enjoy a cup of hot water, I want to make it known that they were very accommodating and willing to boil more water for me. My only suggestion is to perhaps have a dedicated kettle specifically for water only.

 

The Verdict

An extremely delicious place for brunch that I want to come back and try other fares! Everything is fresh, right out of the kitchen and I love that they incorporate local produce.

 

The Place

Emma’s Country Kitchen
1108 St Clair Ave W, Toronto, ON
416-652-3662

Written by Jessica

November 18th, 2013 at 1:06 pm

Posted in Food,Restaurant

Shiseido/NARS Warehouse sale for Fall 2013

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I got an email with details about the upcoming Shiseido/NARS warehouse sale this fall. Unfortunately for me, I’m working that weekend so I won’t be able to go. For those of you that are able to, lucky!

Dates:

Saturday, November 16, 2013 from 9am to 5pm
Sunday, November 17, 2013 from 9am to 3pm

Where:

Shiseido (Canada) Inc.
303 Allstate Parkway
Markham, ON
L3R 5P9

They’re taking cash, Visa, Mastercard, and debit for payment.

You can read about my experience with the Spring 2013 warehouse sale here. I’ve also included a list of tips if you plan on going. Do NOT bring children, and don’t bring your partner (unless they’re also interested). It gets very crowded and people push and shove around a lot.

Have you made up your wish lists yet? What will you plan on getting?

Written by Jessica

November 12th, 2013 at 1:41 pm

Posted in Beauty,events

IMATS 2013!

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This year marks my first time visit to IMATS. It was held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre for the first time as well. Luckily, I didn’t go through this experience alone. I was able to go with the lovely Esther from in a nutshell….

IMATS (International Makeup Artist Trade Show) was a pretty neat experience. Being someone with very little to no make up experience, it’s great to see what products are out there, what are the “must-haves” (ie. where’s the longest line-up?), and learning some tips and tricks while sitting in on some seminars. I went to IMATS with no plan whatsoever, only to browse around and absorb as much as possible. I did spot some familiar beauty blogger faces but was too shy to say hi (Jessica from Beautezine and Elaine Toronto Beauty Reviews). I did end up talking with Rica from The Office Chic for a little bit (thanks Rasilla for introducing us!). I also got to meet Jill from Batting a Lash and Kelly from Glitter Diaries, as well as catch up with Jen and TOD from Procrastinating Pretty.

Esther and I sat on Kevin James Bennett’s seminar. I watched how he spoke through each and every step he went through, as well as the reasons for doing so. He was thoroughly entertaining to listen to. What I thought was most interesting was the way how he uses the dry brush method. What he does is he first lightly pats foundation all over the face, then uses a dry brush to smooth and blend it all out.

The second seminar was with Jane McKay, a MAC Pro senior artist. She also spoke through everything she did, and I mostly paid attention to when she was going to apply false lashes not the model. Let the glue dry slightly by waving it in the air and not blowing on it, don’t have the person close their eyes but rather have them look down when you’re applying… which was all quite interesting because of my first experience at trying false lashes on at the Velour Lashes booth. More on that later.

 

IMATS 2013 - haul
My first IMATS haul

I did pick up quite a few things while I was at IMATS. Here’s what I got:

 

IMATS 2013 - Beauty Blender and Blender Cleanser Solid

Beauty Blender 2 pack – $19
Blendercleanser Solid – $15

This has been around the beauty blogging community for such a long time and I’d never taken the plunge to try it until now. I also picked up the cleanser to go as a set. As for why the solid over the liquid (they were both the same price), I figured the solid would be more portable for travel. Also, the sales girl said she got more lather with the solid and felt it cleaned better than the liquid.

 

IMATS 2013 - Beauty So Clean Conditioning Brush Cleanser

Beauty So Clean Conditioning Brush Cleanser – $20

Another company I’ve been interested in ever since reading about it last year. I wasn’t all that interested in the wipes or the sprays, but I did want to try out the brush cleanser. If it’s one thing I don’t do regularly enough, it’s taking all the brushes out for a big clean.

 

IMATS 2013 - Velour Lashes

Velour Lashes – You Complete Me – $20
Velour Lashes – Got it from my Momma! – $20

I’ve never tried false lashes before. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about Velour Lashes, so when I saw that they had a booth at IMATS, I knew I had to go there. I walked by the booth twice before deciding to finally get a pair. I ended up with two pairs, one for a more natural look, another more full set for more dressed up functions. I asked if I could have someone show me how to apply them since I’d never done it before. One of the girls sat me in a chair, then opened the You Complete Me box. She took out the left eyelash, measured it to my eye, then snipped it to size. She put a small dot of Duo Striplash Dark Adhesive and used the back end of a brush to lightly apply it to the strip. This is where my experience went practically downhill.

While waiting for the glue to dry, she waved it in the air around of times, then proceeded to blow on it with her mouth. I watched with a frozen expression on my face, hoping that she doesn’t accidentally get any spit on it (I mean, that IS going on my eyelid). Thankfully, there was none that I could see and she applied it to my left eye, after having me close my eyes. After she had pressed it into place, I tried to open my eyes… except my left eye couldn’t open! My left eye was glued shut! She then proceeded the use her thumbs to try to pry my eyes open. When my eye could finally open, not only was there glue in my eye, but the lashes were also pointed downwards too much and pretty much blocked my line of vision. At first she said it would take a little while to get used to because it’s my first time, but I said I didn’t think it felt right at all. She ended up taking the lash off and tried again.

After using a cotton pad with makeup remover to get all the glue off my eyelid and lower lash line, she reapplied glue to the lash line and tried to apply it on me again. It was the pretty much the same as above, but this time the outer half of my eye was glued shut. She took off the lash again and said she was going to get another girl to come try to apply lashes to me.

The second girl I think was much more experienced than the first. She talked more about care instructions for the lashes and how to apply them. I noticed that when letting the glue dry, she only waved it in the air instead of blowing on them. Also, she used the Duo Striplash Clear Adhesive (which she said works much better than the dark adhesive). When applying them to my eyes, she told me not to close my eyes, but rather to look downwards. Application was fast and pretty much effortless. It looked so amazing! I had long and fluttery soft lashes! I didn’t ask them to measure and cut the Got it from my Momma! set in case I end up not liking wearing lashes or if I’m allergic to lash glue. If I am, then I’ll have a pretty good giveaway later on.

Unfortunately, the feeling of wearing lashes was a little irritating to my eye. My right eye wasn’t bad, but my left wouldn’t stop watering. I think it’s probably because of the multiple attempts to apply lashes to my left eye or perhaps some glue residue was stuck in my eye. My right eye was ok, but the left was a bit irritated. I couldn’t help but keep touching the inner corner of my left eye whenever it was bugging me. Because of that, the inner corner part of the lashes had lifted off my eyelid and I had to take my lashes off.

 

IMATS 2013 - Bdellium Smokey Eyes 5 pc. Brush Set

IMATS 2013 - Bdellium Smokey Eyes 5 pc. Brush Set close up
Close up of smokey eyes brushes

Bdellium Smoky Eyes 5pc. Brush Set – $20

 

IMATS 2013 - Bdellium Foundation 4 pc. Brush Set

IMATS 2013 - Bdellium Foundation 4 pc. Brush Set close up
Close up of foundation brushes

Bdellium Foundation 4 pc. Brush Set – $28

I had recently bought the travel set when it was on Beyond the Rack about a month ago. I haven’t used it yet, but I like the softness of the brushes and the size for portability. The sets were a pretty good deal and I’ve been wanting to have some new brushes to replace some of my older ones. Another thing I didn’t know was that there’s a difference between the Studio and Yellow Bambu set. Other than the brush fibres, the handles are also a different length! Being so near sighted, I need something with shorter handles (lest I keep banging it against the mirror from standing so close to it) so the Yellow Bambu set it was. I’m excited to try these out!

 

In the end, IMATS was a really neat experience and I would definitely go again! Although next year, I will be thoroughly prepared with a list of Make Up For Ever products I want to try. I had no idea it was a 40% discount at the show! Did any of you go to IMATS? Actually, have any of you ever worn false lashes? Hopefully your first experience was much better than mine!

Written by Jessica

November 11th, 2013 at 9:35 pm

Posted in Beauty,events

October 2013 Empties

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October 2013 Empties
Only a few small empties this month

Lancôme Bi-Facil Double-Action Eye Makeup Remover

Got this from a gift with purchase a while back. I love the small size for traveling. I definitely recommend it and am still currently using it.

Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Daily Cleanser

I received this in a Neutrogena sample box I signed up for online back in early summer. I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this cleanser but I actually love it a lot! It’s super gentle and non-irritating. It leaves my face feeling nice and clean without drying it out. The other thing I love about it is that it works really well with my Clarisonic! Am definitely going to purchase a full size bottle.

C.O. Bigelow Mentha Lip Shine No. 1122

This is actually my second tube, as I love how it leaves my lips feeling really moisturized and smooth. I don’t use it during the day, however I use it as more of a night time lip treatment. Apply to dry, cracked lips before bed, wake up in the morning with amazingly soft lips. I would purchase this again, but I’m testing out another lip product and want to finish it up first.

Cuccio Naturale Milk and Honey Butter 

This hand, feet and body butter is amazing. Not only does it smell heavenly, it also leaves the skin silky soft and moisturizes wonderfully. If only it was more readily available (as in, not only online), I might be persuaded to buy another one, despite its hefty price tag.

Written by Jessica

November 10th, 2013 at 7:31 pm

Posted in Beauty,empties

Fall 2013 Luxe Box Review

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Luxe Box Fall 2013 - box
It’s here!!

With moving from a condo to a house and having to unpack and reorganize everything, blogging took a bit of a backseat. I actually received my Luxe Box about a week ago, but didn’t have time to open it until now. Quite honestly, the moment I opened the box and took a look at its contents, I knew it was amazing and that I am going to love it.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - open box
As always, a beautiful draw string bag with a little card.

Once again, Loose Button decided to allow subscribers to pay a little extra for a curated box. This season, the featured curator is Loulou magazine’s beauty team! For an extra $7, you get the guarantee of those particular items in your box. For me, personally, in addition to thinking it’s not worth the extra $7 (you’re already paying $24-$26 per box, depending on which subscription you choose), I prefer the surprise of opening the box and finding out what’s been chosen for me.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - contents
This season’s contents in my box

From the picture above, I’m quite happy with what I received this season. I can’t wait to try it all out!

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - Klorane Dry Shampoo

Klorane Extra Gentle Dry Shampoo

Full size: 150ml for $18
Sample size: 50ml worth $6

I’ve only tried a couple of dry shampoos and I wouldn’t mind trying this one out.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - Covergirl Outlast nail gloss

Covergirl Outlast Stay Brilliant nail gloss in #310 – Grapevine

Full size: 11ml for $5.99
Sample size: This is a full size product!

This colour is beautiful for fall! I’ve never tried any of Covergirl’s nail glosses either so this will be another first.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - Barefoot Venus Mustard Bath

Barefoot Venus Therapeutic Mustard Bath

Full size: 100g for $4.99
Sample size: This is a full size product!

I’m already a fan of their hand lotion from a previous Luxe Box. This will be a neat one to try.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - Lancome Genifique

Lancôme Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate

Full size: 50ml for $125
Sample size: 8ml worth $20

I’ve been a faithful user of this since 2011. This will be a great size to keep for traveling.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - The Balm Instain

the Balm Instain in Sweet Dot

Full size: 6.5g for $22
Sample size: 0.5g worth $1.69

I’ve heard much about the Balm, but haven’t tried any of their products. This is a cute mini blush that will be great to keep in my purse for touchups during the day.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - Be a Bombshell eyeliner

Be a Bombshell Eye Liner in Onyx

Full size: 3ml for $14
Sample size: This is a full size product!

One can never have too many eyeliners, can they? First time hearing of this brand. Can’t wait to try it. Hope it’s waterproof.

 

Luxe Box Fall 2013 - L'Occitane Supple skin oil

L’Occitane Amande Supple Skin Oil

Full size: 100ml for $52
Sample size: 15ml worth $7.80

Curious to try this out. The smell is quite strong, and reminds me of my mom’s herbal elixirs and oils from Hong Kong.

 

To sum it all up…

# of sample size products = 4
# of full size products = 3
Total value of this season’s Luxe Box = $60.47

 

The total value of this box is the lowest I’ve ever had, which is quite unfortunate. This makes me glad that I did not pay an extra $7 for it! However, the mix of products that are included are all things I could see myself using, so that is a big plus for me.

What did you get in your box? Share with me in the comments below!

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Written by Jessica

November 7th, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Posted in Beauty,Luxebox