Friday, April 27, 2007

I love maple syrup.

I love maple syrup on pancakes. I love it on pizza. And I take maple syrup and put a little bit in my hair when I've had a rough week. What do you think holds it up, slick?

Sorry for the lack of post-age this week, I've been marking like crazy and I have to go out of town this weekend. To a Maple Festival, near Ottawa! How fun! Ever had maple taffy? They pour boiled syrup on ice and roll it up. It turns into this gooey maple-lollipop thing... I can't wait! Look! Here is a picture of 2 kids I don't know, enjoying some sugary goodness:

In the meantime, didja hear that Shopper's Drug Mart will now be carrying the No. 7 line of makeup? It's a drugstore staple in the UK, a bit high-endy, but it has a lot of devotees. I didn't try any of it when I was over there (too enamoured with the Bourjois!), so I'll have to give it a shot!

Also, that Clairol ColorSeal Conditioning Gloss I fell in love with? Apparently it's here!!! I saw an ad for it in the drugstore flyer a couple of weeks ago, but haven't actually seen it on a shelf yet. I imagine I'll be able to buy it very very soon, and will subsequently waste many hours flipping my shiny hair in the mirror. Yipiee!

Have a glorious weekend!

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

This Week's Best Beauty Posts

Just in case you missed it, here are some stellar posts this week from friends in the Beauty Blog Network. Enjoy!

A Touch of Blusher scopes out a new summery fragrance from Stella McCartney

Ageless in Los Angeles offers A Bounty Of Beauty Products To Celebrate Earth Day

All Lacquered Up gets us ready for summer with China Glaze Surf Summer Collection, and gives us the lowdown on InStyle's Best Beauty Buys For Nails

Teri from Beautiful Makeup Search is Getting Her Glow On!

Beauty and Fashion Tech gives Benetint Stain, Tinted Lip Balm, and Pocket Pal Lip Gloss Duo a try.

Will eating apples whiten your teeth? Check out Beauty and Personality Grooming for the answer

So...Sinful Fragrance: Juliet at Beautynomics goes gaga over the sinfully sexy, but reasonably priced fragrance by So..?

Bon Bons in the Bath moonlights as Genie: Whish-ing for smooth silky legs? Look no further!

Hello Dollface Jumps into spring with NYX Cosmetics

Let's talk about Beauty and Health gives us 7 Don'ts after a meal

Lipstick, Powder 'n Paint shows us how to keep those stray hairs at bay with threading.

Makeup Bag previews Lancome Summer 2007: Bronze Tropiques

Pretty by Nature gives us the Natural Ingredients Low-Down.

Must be Wednesday at Spa Blah Blah: Beauty March Hump Day: Nature Girl

Elke at The Beauty Newsletter Blog reveals her fav blushes, for shoots and herself.

The Life of a Ladybug has glowing cheeks for spring!

The Mineral Makeup Blog reviews Lauren Hutton Aqua Elements

Friday, April 20, 2007

Product Review: Kose Seikisho Mask White

This review was made possible by the fabulous Meg's Makeup. Go here to read what other ladies thought of Seikisho Mask White!

Spring is (finally) in the air, but some of us aren't feeling very sprite or springy. Some of us are in hard-core finals mode. Some of us just spent 4 sleepless days re-writing a paper that was handed in months ago (long, horrible, depressing story). Some of us are miserable and grumpy and decided to take a mental health day yesterday to eat ice cream and play with her hair and watch old episodes of The Hills on teh intarweb. And then somebody got jealous of the perpetually perky glow that those SoCal girls have, sucky relationships, work stresses, and friendship dramas be damned.

It's easy to have a fabulous complexion if you get 8 hour of sleep every night, and have the time and money to relax on sunny patios while nibbling on fresh fruits and salads. But there's hope for the rest of us proles*: Kose's Seikisho Mask White can give you the fresh-faced vibrant look that all those 3AM pots of coffee took away.

This little gem hails from Japan, the land of crazy, high tech, and amazing skincare. The peel-off mask is billed as having whitening abilities, but it is coloured an inky, glossy black. In fact, putting it on makes me feel a bit like I'm in an iPod commercial. The effects if it, however, make me feel a bit like I'm in a Neutrogena commerical.

Like other peel-off masks, Seikisho Mask White is kind of sticky to put on, but the fresh, clean, and slightly herbal scent makes wearing it feel almost therapeutic. I'm not sure that I see any whitening effects per se, but my skin definitely looks brighter and smoother afterwards. Pores are also diminished -- probably because the mask has pulled out all the blackheads and gunk. It's like those old school Bioré pore strips -- the blackness of the mask lets you see all the dirt and debris removed from your skin. Gross, yet fascinating!

Be sure to put enough of this on -- the first time I tried it, I attempted to be frugal and only put on a thin translucent layer. That made it difficult and painful to pull off, and reduced its effectiveness. You want to get it just at the point that you can't see your pores through the mask anymore. However, if you go overboard, the mask won't dry properly. It sounds tricky, but it only takes a couple of uses to figure out what works best.

This deep-cleansing mask would be great for oily skin, or skin prone to breakouts. Even for somewhat dry skin, it's beneficial because it gets all those dry flakes off. If you're very dry or sensitive, however, you might want to be careful, because the pulling-off process might irritate your skin. And finally, if you put this mask too close to your eyebrows or hairline, don't try peeling it off those areas -- yeeowtch! Instead, remove what you can comfortably, and just wash the rest off with water or a washcloth.

Alright, off to enjoy the sunshine and warm weather! (Of which I'd have a great window view, if only all these stacks of papers weren't in the way!) Hope everyone has a splendiferous weekend!

* Okay, let's get real. I'm a grad student who blogs about makeup. Prole is not entirely (or at all) accurate here.


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Dolly Parton fans may be having a conniption...

... but I like it!

Ladies and gents, this is a clip of Fergie performing Dolly Parton's "9 to 5" on the Charlotte Church show. This clip makes me very very sad...

... because it reminds me of the good 'ol days. Remember those days? When Fergie was that cute blonde girl in the Black Eyed Peas with the tight dance moves? Remember when Fergie actually SANG? And how she actually had a pretty decent voice? I miss you, good-ol-days Fergie! Come back!

Also, whoever styled her here did a pretty awesome job. The hair and makeup look polished, but still fun. I'm not nuts about the dress, although it is kind of appropriately office-y and sorta kinda cute. And she looks like she's showered, which is nice. But the main thing is that no part of her boobs or abs or butt appears to be visible.


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Saturday, April 14, 2007

In which I wish I was on a sunny beach, with one of these in hand

Hello friends, how are you? I am having a rather stressful weekend, due to school stuff. Blah! Not to promote alcoholism or anything, but sometimes, a girl just needs a strong drink. Curiously, these occasions tend to happen when having a strong drink is highly inadvisable (trying to grade papers drunk only seems like a fun idea!). So here's the next best thing, and it's easy as anything:

Fruit Juice Fizzer:

Fill a glass with ice
Fill half way with your favourite juice
Top with club soda
Garnish with a citrus wheel or fruit spear

And that's it-- a super easy and refreshing way to get some fruit in your day. You can stick to the basic juice + soda combination, use drink crystals in place of juice, or even add a splash of vodka or rum if you're feeling particularly festive. Your imagination's the limit when it comes to the combinations.

The drink pictured above was made with pureed seedless watermelon cubes, limoncello, rum, and club soda. For a non-alcoholic version, just leave out the rum and sub in a couple squeezes of lemon juice for the limoncello. Yum. Some other possibilities are:

Orange juice, splash of cranberry, cranberry spear garnish
Pineapple juice, strawberry garnish
Lemonade, cherry spear garnish
Cranberry juice, melon garnish
Pink Grapefruit juice, tangerine spear garnish

Alright, I'll stop typing in hard-to-read font colours. So go out already and enjoy some spring weather for me if you can, and please send fortifying thougths. This month will be over one way or another! Or if you're stuck inside like me, these most excellent posts from around the beauty blogosphere just may bring some sunshine into your life:

A Touch of Blusher looks at YSL's Summer 2007 Collection

Ageless in Los Angeles discusses some disconcerting news: TV sets go from "Boob Tubes" to Botox Tubes

All Lacquered Up reviews Deborah Lippmann's new line

Beautiful Makeup Search tells us why it is not so bad being blue!

Beauty and Fashion Tech looks at Vita Amazonia Skin Care, DMAE and Matrixyl Creams

Beauty and Personality Grooming checks out Satin Hand cream

Canadian Beauty compares runway and lookbook makeup

Hello Dollface wants you to Get Glamorous with Julie Hewett

April is skincare month at Lipstick, Powder 'n Paint - check out these great cleansers. Plus win one of four Bombshell eye shadow palettes!

Makeup Bag previews Lancome Summer 2007: Bronze Tropiques

Pretty by Nature shares a natural foot bath recipe that is divine.

Spa Blah Blah discovers Mangosteen Mania: The New Super Fruit

Elke reviews the new Lorac Cheek Stamp. Gimick or Genius?

The Life of a Ladybug hates overzealous make-up artists! I am inclined to agree!

Happy weekend!


Friday, April 13, 2007

Product Review: Pink Butterfly by Hanae Mori

aka: It's like I'm pregnant, except I'm totally not.

So, you know how there's this stereotype out there that pregnant women crave crazy things like pickles and ice-cream, or ketchup sandwiches, and what-have-you? I don't know if that's actually true, having spent very little time around pregnant women.

But if changing tastes is what it's all about, maybe I do have a handle on what it's like to be preggers. I'm talkin' perfumes here.

If you will recall, I am a fruity-florals kind of girl. All those faceless, mass-marketed Escada LE-type scents? I'm there. Paris Hilton's perfume? Own it. (Shamefully, of course. I did only pay $20 for it, and I can't stand it now, but I did at one point wear it daily. *shudder*) Now, Paris' offering notwitsthanding, I don't think there's anything wrong with fruity florals -- in fact, they can be downright lovely. But my doctor says I need variety in my diet, which I chose to interpret as "go buy more (different) perfumes".

Which is how I ended up with a sample-sized bottle of Hanae Mori's Pink Butterfly.

Instead of using words to describe this scent right away, let's try to do it using visuals. These are outfits that, in my opinion, call for a fragrance like Pink Butterfly:

Warm-cozy-feminine-sweater scent. That's what Pink Butterfly is to me. It's as close to a gourmand scent as I've ever liked: on first blast, it smells like a vanilla-chocolate martini at full strength. A hint of burnt caramel. It is almost stinging. This aggressiveness fades quickly, and then you're left with warm, casual sophistication.

Although I smell a vanilla/bakery note throughout, there is no actual vanilla in here. Which is nice, because I usually hate vanilla, so I'm not sure why I'm loving this. Anyway, the listed notes are blackberry, strawberry, black currant, bilberry, rose, jasmine, sandalwood and rosewood, which would make it... you guessed it, a fruity floral! It really doesn't smell anything like a fruity floral though. I can detect a hint of strawberry juice in the dry down, but it is a strawberry in the vein of cotton candy, rather than fruit salad.

Despite all this talk of chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla, this is no tween scent. It's warm and inviting -- the woods do a marvelous job of adding complexity and depth. It is sweet, but not tooth-achingly so. Do use a light hand though, as more than a couple sprays will start to knock people out -- the EDT is potent! (My sample vial is a roll-on, which is perfect)

I would be more inclined to wear this in the fall/winter months, but that's really just a personal thing. I think this fragrance would do alright in any season. I've heard that the scent morphs a bit in warm weather, so I'll be excited to try it out! (Assuming it ever warms up around here!)


Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Product Review: Gloves in a Bottle Shielding Lotion & Steps for a Speedy Pedicure

For some odd reason, the more work I have on my plate, the more I want to avoid it*. Some people manifest this avoidance behaviour through sports ("3 term papers and an exam in 2 weeks? Hey, let's join a spin class!"). Others look towards the TV (Arrested Development marathons, anyone?). Still others manically clean and organize everything in sight (these people should come over to my place).

And for me? My attention turns to beauty and beauty-related activities, of course.

Exams to mark? Pedicure!

Presentation to give? Time for a new gloss/eyeshadow/blush!

Paper due? New highlights!

Thesis defense? Major reconstructive surgery! And then flee to Finland and drown sorrows in pickled herring and Aquavit!

Fortunately for me, I've a few years to go before the Thesis defense happens. But, I do have all that other stuff going on, which means that it's Pedicure time, at the very least.

I don't know about you, but I am lazy. I'm certainly not one of those people who exfoliate their soles and keep toes all pretty and polished during the winter months. But inevitably, the call of warm sunshine and cool breezes** gets too much, and the strappy sandals must come out.

Of course, one is rarely prepared for this opportunity. Instead, one finds oneself with nary an hour to go before the sandal-worthy event must happen. In short, one needs a Pedicure In A Hurry.

The choice of the right polish is fodder for another post -- or another blog, for that matter. Today I want to talk about how you can turn those rough, scaley hooves into smooth sandal ready feet, all in about 10 minutes***.

- First, you need a foot file. I really like Dr. Scholl's Contoured foot file, but your favourite file or pumice will do just fine.

- Next, hop in a nice steamy shower. Mmmm. Wash your hair, shave your legs, do your shower 'thang. This would be a great time to use a deep conditioner, since you'll be spending a few extra minutes in there.

- Grab your most moisturizing body wash. I've been using Olay's Creme Ribbons Body Wash which is alright as a wash, but especially good for pedicure purposes. Slather some on the sole of your foot.

- Take the foot file and rub it over any rough spots (ball of foot, sides, heels, tips of toes, etc). The Dr. Scholl's one is great because it's contoured, and small enough so that I can target a specific area without rubbing the rest of the foot raw. The creamy lather from the body wash helps soften skin and protect it from too much abrasion.

- Do this until you are satisfied with the results, or start to get bored and/or pruney. This usually takes me just a couple of minutes. Lather, rinse, and repeat for your other foot.

- Rinse yourself all squeaky clean, and hop out of the shower. Now it's time to get your moisture on.

- This. This is the most important part, and is where the review for today actually starts. Up 'till now, any of your favourite pedicure/bath products would have sufficed, but the next step crucially depends on a shielding lotion like Gloves in a Bottle:

Okay, so it's not the most glamourous looking bottle. But it's exactly what you need. This thin lotion sinks into your just-scrubbed feet, and soothes and smoothes like nothing else. I've tried doing this with body butters, other lotions, and creams, but they just won't work as well. With the other products, your skin gets soft right away, but the feeling fades after an hour, and then you're left with dry flaky skin again. Gloves in a Bottle gives you silky smooth skin that lasts throughout the day. Plus, this sinks in so fast and so thouroughly, while other lotions leave me skidding across our tile floors, picking up random debris along the way (ew).

Now, we're talking about a quick-fix pedicure here, so obviously, results won't be as good as a proper maintence routine (i.e., where you exfoliate and moisturize daily). BUT, if you use Gloves in a Bottle in place of your regular foot cream, you may just find that you need to be much less diligent with that routine, since it locks in moisture so well.

Of course, this lotion works for the skin on the rest of your body as well. You may remember the good results I got with Skin MD Natural, another shielding lotion, and this is certainly a comparable product. There's not much difference between them -- both are soothing, non-irritating, and both absorb quickly. However, I find that while Skin MD has a very light almondy scent, Gloves in a Bottle is truly scentless. There is a fleeting, odd smell of school glue (not really unpleasant, but weird), and then nothing. Due to this, and a slightly better skin-feel during application, I prefer Skin MD. But, if you don't feel like shelling out $25 for 4 oz., take heart: Gloves in a Bottle does pretty much exactly the same thing, and it's only $12.95 for 8 oz. Plus, you can physically go purchase Gloves in a Bottle in Canada AND the US, and the website has a handy retailer locator.

And, if you REALLY love Gloves in a Bottle, you can even order bottles by the gallon! Which sounds crazy, but really isn't if you're using it in a hospital or factory setting, or if your entire family gets hooked on it or something.

Finally, Gloves in a Bottle has this picture on their website. Which makes me think of things like.... um... Farah Fawcett, soaring gloriously. On a dove. Spreading messages of hope and peace and love. And of soft feet!

* Okay, fine, this is not odd. It is the way of the graduate student. Possibly even the way of Life -- the founding rule for all of creation.

** Unless you live in Toronto, apparently. Oh warm weather, why won't you come?

*** OMG, I totally felt like an Infomercial Person right there. "How much would you pay for this amazing talking amazing new cleaning system? $200? $500? $1000 and the left arm of your first-born? Well today, you can have all this for just 3 easy payments of $19.99!" I have career OPTIONS, I tell you!

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Monday, April 09, 2007

I like food... and dreams... and whispers... and Meg's Makeup!*

Mail time is always an adventure at my house. Every once in a while, I get these delightful little packages of samples and goodies in the mail. Hilariously, these packages will often include "Glitterati" under my real name (or sometimes in place of my real name). As dear Roomie says, "The Post Office guys must think a stripper lives here". I love it!

Anyway, my secret stripper-life aside (that phrase is SO gonna come back and haunt me one day...), some of the best packages I get come from Meg's Makeup. I think in the excitement of the reviews, I forget to stress how valuable Meg's site is (regardless of whether or not they send me stuff!).

The philosophy behind the site is to get fair and unbiased reviews of higher-end items, so that consumers don't end up wasting $65 on a crappy face cream, for example. (Incidentally, I love almost everything Meg sends, so I guess I don't really save people money, but the potential is there!) A whole bunch of reviewers will share their experiences with products, and you can see the reviewer's vitals (e.g., colouring, skin type, age, etc.) right under each review.

The ladies on the board are smart, sassy, and LITERATE. My God. I know it's just the internet, but I am a language snob (well, maybe just a language geek), and so it really really bugs me to see reviews like "Haha I got dis frum my sis its great I luv it". That is not a review. It is a text message. Possibly sent by someone who has the unfortunate circumstance of suffering from both ADHD and dyslexia, I don't know. It may not be fair, but when I read something like that, I tend to assume the author is a moron unless proven otherwise. But I digress -- the point is that Meg's is full of intelligent, helpful, and honest opinions. I have discovered fantastic products and even some handy tips from the great community of makeup savvy ladies at Meg's. Plus, they've always got scrumptious contests and giveaways. Love love love!

Stay tuned next week for reviews of a foundation that stays true; the most awesome mask with which to beautify your complexion and scare friends & family; and a clever little pencil that may just save you hundreds of dollars!

*It's from Blades of Glory. G.O.B is in it! It's awesome!


Sunday, April 08, 2007

Chelsea for Prez 2007!

Due to an unfortunate series of events*, I ended up watching the "Search for the Next Pussy Cat Doll" marathon on Much Music (Canadia's equivalent of MTV) today. Of course, now I'm all hooked and shit.

I jumped right in during the end of the most recent episode, and so my first impression of the show was one of: "Why is there a drag queen on stage singing Unbreak My Heart?" After watching the rest of the episodes (oh that's right, they showed them again and again! And again!), I realize that it's not entirely Anastasia's fault. If one is to stay true to a Toni Braxton song, one is going to sound a bit like a dude at some point. Which is not to say that Anastasia doesn't normally sound a bit like a dude in general, though I did like the performance.

Melissa S. reminds me of a ditzy girl I used to work with, so I'm not a fan. Melissa R. is pretty awesome, girl has some vocal chops.

However, I've gotta agree with my friend Cowgirl Warrior on this one, Chelsea is totally my favourite. I know she got flack for copying Christina Aguilera's style, but she sounded phenomenal. I thought they were playing the actual track in some moments. And I love that she called Asia out on being a bitch multiple times. Go Chelsea! Give that one girl who can sing in the PCD a run for her money! Rah rah!

Also, reunion episode on ANTM this week! I saw a Kim! Maybe we'll get more of Crazy Lisa! I can only hope that she gets drunk again and calls Brittany's bush of a weave "Cousin It". Man, I miss Lisa, no one soils herself in a giant diaper on national TV like she does.

* That is, a lot of work to procrastinate on, and complete control of the remote. Danger danger!

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Saturday, April 07, 2007

Product Review: Lumiere Cosmetics Mineral Blush

The final (for now!) installment of my series of reviews for Lumiere Cosmetics' mineral makeup. Check out my reviews of the Foundation and Eyeshadow if you missed them!

I am just enamoured with the blushes from Lumiere Cosmetics. They are just so damn pretty! When selecting my sample shades, I fell in love with "Terra Cotta" in the "Veena Blush" line, which looked like the most gorgeous shade even through the computer screen. It's described as a "deep peachy brown orange", which sounds kinda yuck. To me, it seems much more like a vibrant, juicy, peachy pink. It's a titch warmer than most blushes I buy, but it is wonderful. It's brightens up my face perfectly and makes me think of sunny places, flippy skirts, and pony tails. It's like Nars' famous Orgasm shade, but without the shimmer (which is fine by me -- I can always add shimmer if I want!).

Because I was so dazzled by all the lovely colours, I neglected to read the part where it says the "Mineral Blush" line is meant for those with darker skin tones. So the Burnt Sienna shade I picked was WAY too intense for me. It's sad, because it's so alluring with its burnished shimmer. I could maybe get away with it for night time if I used a feather light touch, but for ladies with deeper or coppery skintones, this would be an absolute winner.

Not to let my own carelessness deter me from properly reviewing the line, I went ahead and ordered another shade: Wild Rose. (Because come on, it's $4, INCLUDING shipping. To CANADA!) Wild Rose is a non-shimmery pale rose colour, cooler and more subdued than Terra Cotta. It's perfect for those days when you want your eyes or lips to take center stage, or if you wish to project that demure ingenue vibe (you naughty thing you).

Fragrance free, easily blendable, and long lasting, I can't see why anyone wouldn't love these. As with all the mineral makeup I've tried, you need to use a light hand with these blushes, but that just means your little $4 tub ($4! That's it! Did I mention the free shipping?) will last you just about forver.

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Friday, April 06, 2007

Product Review: Lumiere Cosmetics Mineral Eye Shadows

Hi friends! Here I am again! Posting! For the 2nd day in a row! Just as I promised!

So today is Part Eyeshadow of my review of Lumiere's line of mineral makeup. Check out yesterday's post for my thoughts on the foundation.

Ooooh, how I love a pretty sparkly shadow. And ooooh how I love a company that has over 100 shades, in various finishes! I got the Soft Brown, Divine, and Light Plum shades.

Soft Brown is just that -- a lovely shimmering brown that goes on dry for a sheer wash of colour; a neutral with some kick.

Divine is a rich sparkling purple -- a total rock-star shade for me. I use it with a damp brush as a liner, and it is awesome. You can go smokey or edgey, and it doesn't look garish.

Light Plum was a bit pinker than I usually go for, but looks seriously pretty if I use a light hand. If you like rose/wine shades, you'll like this.

All three shades I tried were from the Eye Shimmers line. The company also makes matte colours, sheer and intense iridescent shimmers, and even a special line for sensitive eyes. Although I've never used a MAC Pigment, I bet that these would give MAC a run for its money. The shimmers in these look phenomenal. Just stunning. I'd to try some of their sheerer shades, which would more suit my every-day style.

(Here's a tip: If you want to try the Proenza Pink trend, but don't want to commit to buying a lipstick, try mixing a pink shade of shadow like Blush or Pink Pearl with a bit of lipbalm. Even if it ends up looking hideous on your lips, it'll probably still look great on your lids!)

Hope everyone has a fantastic long weekend! Here are some great beauty reads to check out between the Easter Egg hunts and the coma-inducing chocolate consumption:

Ageless in Los Angeles tells us about Jerry Hall's Walk of Fame

All Lacquered Up Explores New Nail Territories - The Underside

Beautiful Makeup Search tries "h" Serum - a Human Growth Hormone for your Skin

Beauty and Fashion Tech takes a look at Kenozki Skin Care

Beauty and Personality Grooming tries treating acne with essential oils

Aveda launches Earth Month, and Pretty by Nature shares the story.

Spa Blah Blah features True Beauties: Childhelp Founders Sara O'Meara and Yvonne Fedderson

The Beauty Newsletter is excited about Sephora 's 75% off sale. Elke's getting some goodies!

The Life of a Ladybug asks: Yes'n or No v'n: the Louboutin Manicure

Let's talk about beauty and health gives us Tips for your skin (Part 1)

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Thursday, April 05, 2007

Product Review: Lumiere Cosmetics Mineral Foundation

The Oscars?!?!?! That's the last time I was here? Jeeeeebus. It's ridonculous. Just ridonculous. If you're still here, you're awesome. Thanks for sticking around.

You know when you plan to do a thing, and it isn't working out so well, and although there are plenty of other things you could be doing that probably would go pretty well, except you've got this mental roadblock from the first thing, which you feel you MUST do before anything else?

No? Well that's what happened here. I was going to have one part of my brain interview the other part (because I am unimportant and friendless! Ha!) about the blog, where it's gotten me, where it's going, and all that. But it just wasn't working. And I felt like I couldn't post until I finished it.

And then it hit me: "No one cares! It's your damn blog, just scrap the idea!"

So I did! Here's the short version:

Blog: Good fun. Old friends. New friends. Hurray.

Perks: New products to try! New blogging friends. Interview w/ NY Times (didn't make it into the article, but likely closest brush w/ real media (as opposed to academic journals) I will ever get). Neato.

Cons: See new product, think "Must try! For BLOG! For THE CHILDREN!!". End up with 16, 783 versions of pink lip gloss. (Or is this a Perk?)

Future plans / aspriations: Continue writing (short term goal addendum: More than once a month). Conquer the world. Possibly not in that order.

Blah blah blah! Let's move on to something much more exciting, alright? Like, mineral makeup, for instance!

Everyone is trying to sell me mineral makeup these days. Seriously. Covergirl, L'Oreal, Sephora, Loblaws, the Home Shopping Network... it's a little crazy. Of course, this meant that I had to see what all the fuss was about.

I'd tried a brand of mineral makeup before, from an independant company that I will not name. Their product ... well... SUCKED. It looked ashy and sometimes cakey, it made my face itch, and it smelled like cigarrette smoke (yes, actually). Needless to say, I was not impressed, and laid my little mineral-powder bowl and brush to rest.

Recently though, I got word of another independent mineral makeup company through the good people of the Beauty Blog Network. These ladies know their stuff, so I perked right up and hit their website.

Lumiere Cosmetics is a web-based company that makes mineral foundations, powders, blushes, eyeshadows, and many other products, and I had the fantastic opportunity to try some of them. Let's start off with their foundation. They have 6 shades in each of 5 undertone categories, that's 30 shades total! At this time of year, I'm a Warm, right in between the Light/Med and the Medium shades. I can get away with the Medium, but mixing is such a snap (A dash of this! A shake of that! Bada-boom Bada-bing!) that I can create my own custom shade in seconds.

If that El Cigaretto brand of mineral makeup was a turn off, Lumiere's foundation is like Josh Hartnett, baby. This powder makeup buffs on creamily, but feels silky and light at the same time. Coverage is so natural, and so long lasting. I have yet to pull out a single blotting sheet, and I've been using this stuff for months.

Lumiere's makeup gives a flawless finish, without a trace of that dreaded mineral-makeup shininess. I'd categorize it as a light-med coverage, but it's so buildable that you can really get it as sheer or as heavy as you like. It photographs well too, no chalky white ghost-face happenin' here.

Concealers glide over this foundation, and the Pure Silk finishing powder sets everything in place and adds an extra veil of perfection. It also works fantastically as a setting powder for other liquid foundations.

Now that I've tried a GREAT mineral foundation, I finally get why everyone gushes about it. It's definitely my go-to for those rushed mornings when I don't have time to squeeze and blend and powder and all that. Tap, swirl, buff, and we're done! Awesome!

Alright, that's enough for today... stay tuned I promise (for real this time!) to come back and post about all the other products from this line!

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