Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Sunday Post, Vol. 4...

Right between Christmas and New Years! I'm sorry to say that I just can't wait to be mid-January and for all this to be over and done with!

Don't get me wrong, I do sincerely hope that everyone has had and is still having a great time. Time with family and friends and time to rest a little. I'm sorry I didn't leave comments on all of my beautiful bloguerettes friend's Christmas posts but my heart was just not in it.

It wasn't planned but I did end up writing a post on Christmas morning, for Catherine.

What did I get my girl? Up until the Thursday before Christmas I had no idea! What do you get a 14yrs old who has everything and isn't into beauty stuff? A charm bracelet!


Leather with a silver clasp the charms are a paw print for Fifi & Julius our fur babies, a music note for she now is on her way to become pretty good on both guitar and piano and the tiny one is an Infinity symbol for her Father who would tell her that he would love her for ever and ever...


In my purse...

Given that I've worked only two days this week there isn't much to say except that I'm really loving my new NARS Dolce Vita lipstick which I will review right after New Year.

This week's makeup love...

Well, I've actually enjoyed three no makeup days!!! Just cleansing and enjoying Nuxe Crème Fraîche as a moisturizer was bliss! Talk about relaxing and recharging my batteries! On Friday I discovered a great combination, Rouge Bunny Rouge blush in Starina and Rouge Dior Grège 1947!!! Love!


Rouge Bunny Rouge in Starina and Rouge Dior Grège 1947


Nails...

Tragedy!

On Sunday night I wanted to apply Diorific Minuit, my current favorite. The cap of the bottle had been left opened!!! I honestly have no idea how this could have happened. I still tried it on two fingers but it was thick and took a long time to dry. I just couldn't take the chance of it not hardening enough before bed time so I went with Diorific Frimas instead. Of course Diorific Minuit is now sold out everywhere! :(

New additions...

Wanting to save my beloved Diorific Minuit, I stopped by a specialty shop for a nail polish thinner and purchased Essie Fluid-e. I'll keep you posted. I also bought a nail glue from the brand Kiss. For some reason both my thumb nails have horizontal cracks that even if I file them off keep reappearing so I plan on fortifying the tips with it. I'll let you know how that goes.

On Monday morning, before going in for work, I had finally decided to get Chanel Accent blush but ended up being tricked! Sneaky Chanel counter! Seems they were out of the holiday edition and replaced it on the display case with another which came out last fall with no fanfare. When I got to my office and opened it to take pictures (the lighting there is better) I was puzzled by the color.

I ended up with Joues Contraste in 85 Évocation!


Notice the little piece of paper on the side of Évocation, that's the receipt! 


I'm still not sure if I will keep or exchange it since this is not the one I wanted! I know it's my fault for waiting so long but now I think it was a good thing. I just realised that Starina from Rouge Bunny Rouge is quite similar (according to pictures I've seen) and so I think it will do just fine. :)

Finally I purchased more candles at Chapters where they were finally on sale at 50% off. I got two more Voluspa, this time in Chestnut & Vetiver and a big Indigo brand, Red Currant and Vanilla which was lit on Christmas Eve.


For your viewing enjoyment, a bit of fun from Guerlain...




Have a great week everyone! xoxo Hélène



Saturday, December 28, 2013

2013, The Flops...

In a perfect world everything would work for everyone! Ok I guess it would be a little boring but at least there would be less money wasted. Looking back on the reviews I've posted in 2013 I'm glad to say that out of all of them most were if not hits, products that were good enough to recommend. Others on the other hand just didn't work for me and were hard to comment on. To call them flops may be a bit harsh but sadly that's what they were to me.


Here goes...


Revlon Colorstay Cream Eyeliner in Charcoal

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion in Eden

L'Oréal Color Riche Balm in Caring Coral 418

Laura Mercier Mineral Finishing Powder

L'Oréal Telescopic Shocking Extension Mascara

bareMinerals Pretty Amazing Lip Color

Clarins Graphic Expression Eye Quartet Mineral Palette

Real Techniques Brush Collection, Eye Starter Set

Boots No7 Beautiful Skin Cleansing Water

The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil

Nuxe Lip Moisturizing Stick

Almost all the products tried for my Hair Quest, among them L'Oréal Nutri-Sleek Precious Oils


These were such disappointments. I've tried the Clarins Quad again recently over my 
NARS ProPrime Eyshadow Base and still no staying power. I regret not taking
 the Laura Mercier back for as it turns out, my daughter who I thought would 
use it over her sunscreen just doesn't want to be bothered with it.


These two L'Oréal products were fails at first use! I tried to make them work but with no success.


If you already use and love some of these products then I'm truly happy for you. Also do not let this list reflect on the brands mentioned for they all offer great beauty options. My favorite gel eyeliner is from L'Oréal and I will continue to buy it and the same goes for The Body Shop, especially their bath/body offerings.

Hopefully there will be less of these flops in the future because like everybody else, I hate wasting money! My consolation is that some of these reviews may have enabled some of you to make more enlightened choices and save pennies in the process.


Have you had flops this year? What was you biggest disappointment?


Thursday, December 26, 2013

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue...

I think by now pretty much everyone knows that my favorite lip balms are for night, Nuxe Rêve de Miel in the jar and for day, Caudalie Lip Conditioner. Even so, I still enjoy trying new ones and when they are less expensive and good, all the better! In recent years I've tried my share of drugstore lip balms and although they can keep lips protected they don't really treat them. Some could have been contenders if they didn't have that much slip while others had the right formula but the taste was just unpleasant and got to me after a while.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue...

I picked up these "babies" at my local drugstore. I think they must have just received them since they had a surprising large display that was quite full. I chose 35 Too Cool which is transparent and 45 Just Peachy, a light frosty peach.




They are lovely! For less than $5.00 a piece I'm glad I got two. In fact I purchased three, a second Just Peachy for Catherine. I think she already owns a few of the other versions of Maybelline Baby Lips but these are my firsts.

They go on smooth and moisturize on contact. I'd say they last a few hours and are excellent to protect any pout from the cold weather although I don't think I would rely on them for skiing if it's below -20 Celsius. With the wind it would be preferable to use something a little thicker like Nuxe Rêve de Miel or even a waxy stick like good old LypSyl which is way more convenient to reapply when one wears mittens or gloves.

I don't ski but I know what extreme cold winds feel like!

When first applied they have a faint minty flavor that disappears after about 20 minutes or so. I would rather they have no taste at all since mint gives a refreshing sensation and in winter, outside, no need for this but like I said, it fades relatively fast.

Would I recommend Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue? Yes!

Super affordable I'll bet they will even be on sale once in a while so you may look for specials and stock up. One for every coat pockets and if you live north of the 45th parallel (and even a little to the south), believe me you need them because we all know, cold weather can dry up our lips and make them sensitive in no time. Three for the price of my beloved Caudalie is quite a deal and yes, they do compare!

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue in 45 Just Peachy...

I wasn't able to do a proper swatch but do know that it's quite frosty so I wouldn't lay it on as thickly as I would the 35 Too Cool the transparent version. I was surprised by it's color for it's very light. If you want a nude lip à la 60s this one's perfect!


Just Peachy is lighter and frostier than the color on the tube 
and here it does look a little darker than in real life.

The only thing missing...

They have no SPF so do keep that in mind. UV rays reflected by the snow... If you are the type to enjoy winter sports, you better skip these and go for for lip balms with sunscreen.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue comes in 6 moisturizing shades...



From the left, 35 Too Cool, 40 Pink Me Up, 45 Just Peachy, 
50 Soothing Sorbet, 55 Coral Crave and 60 Berry Soft.

One quick note...

If you have peelies on your lips it would be better to skip the colored versions and stick with the transparent one since they can make your lips look worse. The pigments grab onto any irregularities and that's not a look anyone wants. Depending on the state or your lips, these can give them back their smoothness in no time, in other words, you could start the day with the transparent one and switch to a color by noon.

Maybelline claims a "renewing" effect but it's pretty basic. Although not miraculous, it's still an excellent little lip balm that's way less expensive than many. You can wear it under a lipstick but that this will make it quite slippery and will diminish it's wear time but hey, in winter you gotta do what you gotta do to not only look good but feel good.

Caudalie Lip Conditioner remains my daytime favorite but at about $15.00 I'm not about to buy 3. In my purse it resides but these Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue will be perfect for my coat pockets!


Reviews:

Makeup Alley: 3.8 / 5 lippies for 17 reviews (these will likely increase since this is new)
Beauté-test: there are no reviews yet which is not surprising. It's not even showing on the Canadian website.


Ingredients:



Do you have a lip balm you keep in your coat pocket or a favorite at the moment?



Wednesday, December 25, 2013

One More Angel...


Every time a bell rings an angel gets his wings.


It's a Wonderful Life was a favorite movie of both André and myself. The classic tale of the struggles of a man who even if he insists on doing things right, for some reason can't make things work. In the end his honesty and strong caring for others are what lift his spirit.

An old black and white movie from 1946! Not André's style, not one bit! It took me more than a few years to have him sit with me to watch it but when he finally did it became one of his favorite movies ever and we would enjoy it every year at this time. I think in a way he identified with George Bailey and rightfully so! In his life there were years of triumph but also some of struggles. What was always constant was the respect of others toward him caused by his contagious positivism.

There was always tomorrow, there was always light at the end of the tunnel...

He was not perfect, no one is but one thing I'm sure of is that if there is a training period for Angels, André went through it at the speed of light and if there was an exam, well, he definitely passed with flying colors!

Part of a new crowd, André's bell has already rung by now I'm sure!




Te l'aime mon'Amour!

Joyeux Noël!



Monday, December 23, 2013

Beautiful Compacts, Vol. 2...

Hi! My name is Hélène (aka Icaria) and I'm addicted to... Compacts!

Ouf! Now I feel better! I've said it!

They say that admitting an addiction is the first step on the road of recovery, don't they?

Ever since I was a little girl I've been intrigued by them and whenever I had the chance, would grab my mom's double sided mirror compact from her purse, look at myself and imagine I was famous and beautiful like Sophia Loren or Anouk Aimée. Oh and grown up too! :)


Schoolgirl Primping
Saturday Evening Post cover, September 10, 1921
Paul Stahr (1883-1953)


Fast forward many, many years and I have grown up to become a full blown compact lover/addict. No more intrigued I just love to take out a nice one from my purse to discretely reapply my lipstick! I don't use them to put on a complete face makeup in the metro but the small gesture of taking a pretty powder compact out of my purse to have a quick look is pure joy for me, really!

These past few weeks with all the beautiful holiday collections displayed at different cosmetics counters, I've been drooling at a few beautiful options but this time decided to go for content instead of look. I was a little disappointed that Guerlain decided to use the same compact for both Crazy Terracotta and Crazy Météorites but I really wanted those powders and I have no regrets. Since these where my big splurge I've had to pass on some beauties but since they're not all limited editions I guess I can wait a bit.

What makes a compact worthy of consideration for me? It has to look good of course, sturdy, must close shut either with a magnet or have the gentle click of a good quality clasp and it definitely has to have a bit or weight. The product inside must be up to par with the packaging. I guess that last bit is a no brainer unless you decide to go for a double sided mirror.

It's understandable that some will not want to spend over $50.00 for a powder compact. Beautiful ones are indeed expensive but most will last longer then their more budget friendly counterparts. In some cases the powder disappears in no time and in others, well it's the packaging that just isn't good. After a few months of use they either don't close shut anymore or they flat out break!

Finely milled, tightly pressed powder in a good quality compact will last and last. You just can't beat quality!


Here are a few to consider...


Guerlain Météorites refilable compact $140.00


Chanel Les Beiges $60.00 and Chanel Poudre Universelle $50.00


Guerlain Crazy Météorites $82.00 and Diorskin Forever $43.00


Estée Lauder Aries Compact $55.00 and Year of the Horse $138.00
These are limited editions.


These two below are compact foundations...


 Chanel Vitalumière Compact Douceur, $66.00


Givenchy Teint Couture, $61.00


Ultimate splurges...

These two below are both over $200.00 CAD. Clé de Peau and Serge Lutens offer these stunning compacts and I must say the first I've seen and swatched and the powder is indeed dreamy as for the second, it's a complete mystery.


Clé de Peau


Serge Lutens


The one I'm still in love with and use everyday...


Givenchy Le Prisme Visage $52.00, reviewed here.


If you were wondering why I titled this entry Beautiful Compacts, Vol. 2, well it's because I did one last year. Most of the ones shown on it (yes there are repeats) are still available and the prices haven't changed much. The only compact that's on it's way out as far as I know is the more affordable version of Guerlain Météorites shown. You can view this first edition, here.

Erm... I don't think this entry has helped me with my addiction one bit! I'm eying both Chanel Vitalumière and Les Beiges and let's not forget that next spring there will be new bronzers!!! Did you know I was addicted to bronzers too? Oh well, I guess I'll just have to face the fact that there's no way out for me and I'll just have to live with it!


How about you? Is a beautiful compact a must and if so which is your favorite? 



Sunday, December 22, 2013

The Sunday Post, Vol. 3...

Before you start...

Grab a cup of coffee or tea so you'll be all comfy to watch those videos at the end. They are definitely worth the extra time, believe me! :)

Christmas week...

For Catherine and I it will be a quiet one. I have three days off and so I think I'll spend them in my pyjamas, blogging a bit and watching movies with my girl. Some of you may have noticed that until now I haven't mentioned this holiday and haven't posted gift suggestions or any type of wish list as I did last year. Without my love my heart is just not in it. Although André wasn't a fan of Christmas he still was the one who made it special and now that he's gone I guess it'll take a few years for me to get back into the spirit of the season, if ever.

Weird to be buying my own gifts but I did spoil myself, a bit too much actually, I guess in a way I needed to compensate for his absence. The good thing this week is that I'm not working on the 24th and so it'll be less sad for me. I don't know how I would have felt getting home late on that day because for some reason the image of Scrooge coming home to and empty depressing house keeps popping in my mind. Now I'm nothing like Dickens' character of course and I'm blessed to have my daughter but it's the imagery that I keep thinking about especially since family is non existent anymore and our few friends will be away. I just hope it won't be too hard on Catherine.

By the way, I did get my baby a pretty special gift and if she allows me I'll show you a picture later next week. I still have to wrap it! She has requested a pretty paper with a smashing bow! :)


In my purse...

This week there were a few changes. On Monday we experienced our coldest day so far with a horrendous windchill factor of -28° Celsius! That morning by the time I got to the office my eye liner on the outer corners of my eyes was pretty much gone! In case you don't know, cold makes eyes react, they get all watery, especially from the cold wind! I decided to add the little Annabelle crayon purchased earlier this year to make corrections when needed. It would seem that I'm also hoarding a few more lipsticks!




In need of a little comfort...

With the colder weather I've been reaching for richer products a few times this week. I've been using Clinique All About Eyes in the morning, this eye cream is on the bland side and it's gel like texture gives me just enough extra moisture and it's perfect for under makeup. Nuxe Crème Fraîche has been getting a little love as well at night and so did Avène Cold Cream hand cream. This one is more moisturizing and is perfect before bed since it's richer and takes longer to penetrate than my beloved Caudalie. L'Occitane en Provence Ultra Rich Lotion for body is a new addition and I can't comment much on it yet since I've used it only three nights but I do think it'll be a favorite. Flannel pyjamas were a must this week, believe me!




Fragrances...

Yes they deserve a little paragraph this week. I've been enjoying a few and have totally fallen in love with a new one! *sigh* Roses de Chloé! I love the smell of roses on their own and Nic from Strawberry Blonde reviewed it recently and I must say that she had me at "rose garden" smell! I got a sample of it at Sephora and I do think that it will be on my birthday gift list to myself in April. You can read her review, here. Shalimar de Guerlain and Estée Lauder's Modern Muse haven't been reviewed yet but La Petite Robe Noire has. It still doesn't develop on me the way it does on others but I'm truly enjoying it more and more. By the way a new version is coming out soon and I can't wait to try it!




Nails...

I'm truly impressed!!! Chanel Le Vernis in Cosmic lasted the entire week!!! I didn't think I could wear it that long since it's sooo... black but I didn't have time to do another manicure and so on my nails it remained. The formula is just amazing. See for yourself on this picture below. I applied it last Sunday night and this was taken on Friday afternoon! Barely any tip wear and that's with no top coat whatsoever!




New additions...

Of course I did a little shopping this week and ended up getting a few essentials. Wanting to give my NARS Tolède a break and looking for a more moisturizing formula I did get Dolce Vita and I love it. I will review it soon. I replaced my Clinique Almost Lipstick Black Honey and finally purchased Diorshow Iconic Overcurl mascara! My splurge this week, L'Occitane en Provence Ultra Rich Lotion for body and two Voluspa Makassar Ebony & Peach candles.




For your viewing enjoyment...

As of yesterday I had no idea of what I would choose but my bloguerette buddy Sunny gave me the answer when she tweeted about the latest Cartier Winter Tale video.

If I would sell a kidney for a Guerlain Météorites compact I would likely sell a limb for a Cartier red box! Ok maybe just a toe but it does count as limb doesn't it?

Here are three and dreamy is what they are...








Then there is this most stunning of "commercial", that I did post last year, L'Odyssée de Cartier! Not a winter tale per say but it's just spectacular. Do notice the "transformation" at the beginning...




Know what I mean about those little red boxes? :)


I sincerely hope you all have a beautiful and joyous Christmas week! Hélène xoxo



Friday, December 20, 2013

Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey...

This in a way is a bit of a repost from an entry I wrote back in April, here.

Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey...




I have fallen in love with it... Again!

In case you didn't know, Black Honey came out in 1971 and it's not for nothing that it received a sort of cult following right from the start. This is truly the perfect berry lip color for everyone! Sheer but buildable for a more noticeable pout, the texture is balmy with no taste and fades evenly leaving behind a bit of a stain effect so even if it's gone you still have some color on your lips.

I kid you not, every woman can wear it! From the palest to the darkest complexion, it's extremely flattering due to the fact that it's on the warm side and somehow seems to get cooler if you make it darker. It truly is the weirdest thing.

As many of you know, I'm more of a nudish/neutralish lipstick color wearer but recently there have been days where I felt I needed a bit more color. Ok I haven't crossed over to the "bright lipstick side" yet but I guess I've been making baby steps and this is for me one step in if not the bright direction at least the darker one. I used to wear them a lot ages ago and I guess I'm slowly getting back my groove sort of speak. :)

Since the one I had was not worthy of keeping in my purse I've decided to put it in my Office Emergency Makeup Bag and purchased a new one. I do like the look of the Almost Lipstick packaging! What can I say, I've always loved silver. It's not luxurious and it doesn't have that satisfying click when you put the cap back on but it does fit tightly meaning it'll stay put and that is a big plus compared to my old one. At $19.00 my take is we should all have one in our purses! Really!

If you stop by Clinique counter and just look at it without swatching it you may be scared of it! It's dark, really dark (impossible for me to photograph properly) but try in on your hand and you will see, it's a beautiful basic color to own.

For swatches I'll refer you to my original post mentioned at the beginning of this entry. I know they are a bit pathetic but I did try this week to get better ones and it was a no go. It seems like I have the weirdest skin color on the planet, either too orange or too pink!

So you wanna know how much love this little wonder it getting? Just have a look at some of the reviews on Makeup Alley! It gets a 4.1 out if 5 lippies for 1135 reviews!!!


Is there a lipstick you always keep in your purse?



Wednesday, December 18, 2013

My Office Emergency Makeup Bag...

Little essentials to have handy, to avoid panic!

One of the differences between men and women? Beside a briefcase if they have one, men leave home with only their keys and cell phones in the morning while women, many anyway, will want to carry around their entire makeup collection and pharmacy essentials.

There was a time when I had no other choice than to do this. Working as a makeup artist and having to go to different venues or stores all the time, I had to be ready for almost anything. Then when I had to travel, my bag had to be light and so everything in it had to have a purpose. I learned early on to travel light.

We all know that mornings can get crazy! I've never forgotten to put on mascara but lipstick, yes. Weird since I usually carry at least five in my purse. Ibuprofen for that headache, dental floss to get rid of the bits of spinach from the salad I had for lunch and dryer sheets for static cling are some of the things I keep if not with me, in my office drawer. For makeup, promotional sized and drugstore brands are perfect for this. There's no way I'll leave my Givenchy compact at the office!

These days when I see women with huge purses filled to capacity it makes me smile. They could make their lives so much simpler if they were a little more organised. Now do know that I'm not the most practical person and at the moment my house is total chaos but handbag and office drawer have to be top notch!


The makeup bag I chose came with an Estée Lauder Gift With Purchase. 
Not the prettiest, I did think about buying one but then figured it would do fine. 

What's in my emergency bag?

Ever been stuck at the office with a broken nail and nothing to smooth out the edges? Or wearing new shoes and in desperate need of one or several bandages? I have and it ain't fun having to run (unless feet hurt) to the drugstore for stuff you know you have plenty of at home. Even if you only have a tiny space to call your own at work there is a way to keep a few essentials that you may never have any need for but if you do, well, you'll be thankful, believe me!



Biotherm hair brush (seen folded, I've had this for ages), Twinings tea bags (Chai, Darjeeling and hidden under is my favorite Blackcurrent), 2 dryer sheets in a little ziplock (to fight static on clothes and the fragrance will not get annoying given they're sealed in their own plastic bag), a couple of bandages, TBS Honeymania lip balm, Estée Lauder sample double whammy concealer and Sumptuous mascara, Avon's Mark double sided glosses, Crabtree & Evelyn Aromatherapy stick, a small deodorant, compact mirror with a magnifying side, samples of Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire and Dior J'adore, Bourjois blush in Rose Ambré, Rimmel lipstick Kate in 08, Dental floss and a pair of tweezers.

Already at work, small size of Caudalie Huile Divine, Vichy hand cream, nail file and Advil.

The dryer sheet bit is something I learned years ago. I can't remember if it was someone who told me about this or if I read it somewhere but in winter it can be more than useful. If like me you like wearing light fabrics you know what static cling can do. By gently rubbing a dryer sheet on your garment it will help neutralize it! Much better and more convenient than those cans of Static Guard they used to sell. I don't even know if that stuff is still available. These I've used today in fact. The colder it gets outside, the more static cling you get indoors, especially due to nylon coats.

Crabtree & Evelyn Aromathology Pulse Point Balm is also another item I've had for years and sadly I don't think it's still available. It's an oil with a pepperminty smell that you apply to pulse points for relaxation. Soothing when you smell it, it helps with headaches but more importantly it helps me calm down if I get in a bad place. Dealing with people can sometimes be quite aggravating and this has been a godsend in the past.

I have reviewed Caudalie Huile Divine last summer and what I thought would happen indeed did! It's perfect to help tame the static I get in my hair from my coat and scarf. One spray, I rub my hands together and run my fingers through the length of my hair. No more static cling and fresh smelly hair. I rub the top of my hands with what's left. Perfect!


Everything fits and I still have room to spare!

I don't know about you but me I hate having to ask others for anything and I'm one of those people who likes to be ready for any situation or in this case, little emergencies.

The only thing that's missing is a little kit of thread with a needle. For some reason I can't find the one I had so it's on my list. You never know when a button will pop!

Do you have a little emergency bag/kit?



Monday, December 16, 2013

Chanel Le Vernis, Cosmic...

I don't own this one, my daughter Catherine does! Her first Chanel beauty item and you can read about how this came about, here.




So as I've mentioned, after showing her pictures of it I saw on a blog I purchased it for her. She did wear it that week but it didn't take long for it to be ruined due to the fact she plays guitar at school. It had nothing to do with the formula.

Yesterday I decided to give it a go myself. Do note that this is not my kind of color at all!!! I like dark vampy but this is a little too much for me. It's black! The last time (the only time in fact) I wore a black nail polish was more than 15 years ago and it was for... Halloween!!!

Ok it was a cream, flat ordinary black, a l'Oréal special edition and in no way it could compare to Cosmic but still, this is a tough color to wear for me.




Chanel Le Vernis in Cosmic on Catherine's nails was positively stunning but the lighting in the house was just too horrible and it was a little too cold to try to take pictures outside. She has played nail model for me once, here, and so think about this color on her. She has the perfect nail shape for it. It's a gorgeous black with the tiniest bluish glitter that when they catch light give the impression that nails are "creating" light, if that makes sense. It's not flat but it's not glittery either and I find that the glitter is somewhat different, smaller than Diorific Minuit and Frimas.




Looking at Cosmic, think about when you look at the sky at night, at the stars! If you forgo the North Star and zoom in onto the furthest ones and start "detailing" them, well, you get pretty much the same effect as with Chanel Le Vernis in Cosmic!

I know, I know, some will say it's not black but more like a very dark smokey grey. I've read Cosmic described as such somewhere but to me, well , it's black! A smart one but a black none the less.


See what I mean about the Cosmos? This is a close up of the bottle.


Like the stars the glitter is not white, it's a faint blue and this is what makes it so stunning! In fact it's so unique that it's one of the hardest nail polishes I've had to photograph!


This is the best I could do! I think you can see that the glitter is quite fine and blue.

The formula...

A dream!!! While the first coat looked kind of weird and sheer, the second went on super easily and leveled everything up. The finish is just plain fantastic! What you see on the picture above are two coats with no top coat. Super shiny right? Now imagine it with a gel top coat!

As mentioned this is not my kind of color and this one belongs to Catherine. I don't think I'll be able to wear it this entire week because it make my hands look hard, a little like someone with black hair if you know what I mean. I simply wanted to show it to you because this is a limited edition available now at Chanel counters.

If this is your kind of color, don't waste any time and do get it because it's just plain beautiful!



Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Sunday Post, Vol 2...

So, the weather has been getting pretty cold in Montreal which means that most smart people are starting to look like smaller versions of the Michelin man! The not so smart, well, they kind of look like sad icicles!

-28° Celsius with the windchill yesterday and it's only the beginning!

Last night we've had snow, lots of it and today it's still going down hard!

Sadly we can't look forward to be snowed in since as you may have guessed, Canada is pretty good with the white stuff and in my beautiful city the bus and metro network is quite amazing so whatever happens, to work I'll go!

In my purse...

Similar to last week although I did reach for Clinique Black Honey a few times in the morning and wear NARS Tolède more than Rouge Dior Grège during the day. My lips are a little dryer due to the cold weather so I'll be using my Caudalie Lip Conditioner more often under a creamier lippie. Needless to say that at night I've been applying a thick layer of my beloved Nuxe Rève de Miel lip balm.


I did a comparison of these two and the jar won by a mile!!!

This week's makeup love...

I used my new Marcelle CC as a base in the morning and it's been doing a fine job although my nose gets a little shinier in the afternoon. I'll have to keep a close watch because I'm feeling two little clogged pores on my right cheek so *fingers crossed* it's not the CC and just a case of poor cleansing. Powders and blush were all courtesy of Guerlain with Crazy Météorites, Crazy Terracotta and Madame Rougit.

Eyes enjoyed Chanel Illusion d'Ombre in Fatal combined with Dior Velvet almost everyday with a little accent from the medium beige in Chanel Charming palette. Since the look was a bit darker I've been using Bobbi Brown gel liner in Caviar Ink and I must say I'm really starting to like it. For mascara, it was my little size of Benefit They're Real!


Bobbi Brown Gel Liner in Caviar Ink.

Nail of the week was O.P.I Muir Muir On The Wall which was reviewed yesterday. A beautiful color but unfortunately not a hit.

Lastly for fragrances I started the week with Tocca Florence, a lovely light scent that I'll keep for spring so I'll wait before writing a review of it since I've only worn it a few times so far. On Tuesday I forgot to reach for anything and so stopped by a drugstore next to work and sprayed some Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy which I enjoyed quite a bit two years ago but never took time to review. I think I still have a sample left so I may write a little something about it in the new year. The rest of the week was again Dior Addict Eau Délice!

New additions...

Until Saturday morning I was such a good girl!!! I went into Sephora only once on Friday night to have a quick look at Urban Decay Naked 3 palette. I didn't buy any beauty stuff!!!

What happened Saturday morning? Stacey, that Expat Makeup Addict who lives in Dubai had a blog sale! I caved in... again! I previously purchased Chanel Mystère from her and just couldn't resist getting Guerlain Terracotta La Sélection de L'Été!!! I sooo wanted that compact last summer but it wasn't available in Montreal. I can't wait for it to get here! Stacey still has some nice goodies up for grabs so do go have a look, here.

Oh I almost forgot, yesterday afternoon I purchased a Revlon lash curler. I've been having such a hard time with my Shiseido lately mainly due to the dark metal color. I've been having difficulty to see my lashes through it and so I've ended up either pinching my lids or worse, crimped up lashes. When I was able to use daylight to do my makeup in the morning it wasn't an issue but with a lamp it's totally different. Hopefully this inexpensive one will do for now.


Guerlain La Sélection de L'Été summer 2013.

Wants...

Chanel Accent blush from the holiday 2013 collection Nuit Infinie is still on my list! *sigh* Toward the end of the week I'll look into mascaras and will likely get Dior Iconic Curl. More lippies? Maybelline just came out with a nice nude collection that I have yet to see and I there's still NARS Dolce Vita that I would like to get. Remember my review of Clinique Black Honey Lip Duo? I'm thinking about replacing the lipstick since I've been reaching for it a few times in the morning but do not want to put it in my purse given the poor state my tube is in.

What's up with Cat?

Last week I mentioned giving Catherine her first Chanel Le Vernis and she did wear it but the lighting was so not good I wasn't able to take pictures of her nails. About three days in, it was ruined! She plays guitar at school and doesn't use a pick so it was kind of normal and had nothing to do with the formula.

On Thursday night she had her first Christmas show at school where she was to sing. The auditorium was filled with people, the show went brilliantly but... we could hardly hear her! The stupid music teacher had decided to bring in his wife to "accompany" Catherine and the two other girls selected for a rendition of The Beatles' Let It Be.

The result, a pseudo showcase of the music teacher's wife, apparently a "professional singer" who ended up messing up the words!!! I know, Let It Be is such a hard song to sing! Right?

The good thing in this, Catherine wasn't fazed out and took in in stride. She almost didn't go but decided that since she had given her word she would honor it. That's my girl!!! This week she's got another Christmas show and will sing again but this time it's the school's choir and I can't wait for that. I'll let you all know how it went next week!

For your viewing enjoyment...

Let It Be of course!



For some reason although I do know the song by heart I've never really payed any attention to the lyrics. They do indeed go with the season even if it's not a "Christmas" song.


Have a great week everyone! Hélène xoxo



Saturday, December 14, 2013

O.P.I Muir Muir On The Wall… and Gwen Stephani

O.P.I Muir Muir On The Wall...

I guess after my great experience with Diorific Frimas the week before I was expecting similar results with this one but no, it didn’t do as well.

O.P.I Muir Muir On The Wall is a beautiful deep plum with a light gold sheen that makes it appear metallic. Classy and vampy this one is just my style but unfortunately it didn't turn out to be very resistant to tip wear. I applied it on Sunday night without a top coat and by Monday afternoon already it was looking less than fresh. 


I've had to take my pictures at the office since the lighting at home was just plain horrible.



Monday afternoon.

That evening I did apply a top coat but even with it, it continued to break on the ends of my nails especially my index fingers. This was clearly a case of redoing my nails mid week and I thought of applying Frimas again but I just didn't have the time.


Tuesday afternoon with top coat. It's not that obvious on the picture 
but there's already some tip wear especially on the index finger.

Me was not happy! 

By Thursday night there was a big chip on the tip of my right index finger! Since I had to go out I did an express correction and applied a little of Muir Muir On The Wall just on the colorless spot. Good thing no one looked at my nails up close. Not a good thing!

This is the first time this happens to me with O.P.I. All the polishes I own from this brand have been winners but sadly this one isn't. Two coats made it perfect and the color was gorgeous but that was it. I was expecting at least five days of good nails but got a little over three. Do note that I don't put my hands in water much but as I've mentioned before I type a lot! This of course doesn't help but most of my recent nail polish purchases have fared quite well compared to this one. 


So this one was a dud for me but I'm still looking forward to the upcoming O.P.I Gwen Stefani for OPI Collection.


“Inspired by the 2013 Metropolitan Museum Costume Institute Gala that featured the theme “Punk: Chaos to Couture,”. “With her expertise as a singer, songwriter and designer, who better to collaborate with than Gwen Stefani?”. “Known for her trademark red lips, bold eye makeup and nail art, Gwen uses beauty to accessorize her style.” – OPI Executive Vice President and Artistic Director  Weiss-Fischmann


Click on the picture to visit my favorite Romanian girl Tavia, on Chic Profile. She's got all the promo photos and really, the colors are stunning, just like the artist I guess. :)



Thoughts about the name Muir Muir On The Wall...

Oh how that name brought back memories! For most it sounds like "Mirror, mirror on the wall" but for me it reminded me of something totally different!

Ever heard of the movie The Ghost and Mrs Muir? No? Maybe the tv show?

When I was a kid we used to get what were already dated English series either from the States or the UK on television translated in French and one of my favorites was Madame et son fantôme (The Ghost and Mrs Muir). I just loved it! 

A young widow along with her children and a funny grumpy maid, moves into a beautiful house that once belonged to a sea captain. I can't quite remember if it was on a beach or on a cliff but I can recall vaguely the room of the captain with its beautiful spyglass set on a stand to watch passing ships and spy on visitors calling on the lady of the house. He would show himself only to Mrs Muir and I was so hoping they would fall in love! 


Edward Mulhare and Hope Lange in The Ghost and Mrs Muir the tv show.*


Yup! That's what I call a handsome ghost! 

I won't bore you with details of either the movie or the tv show but if you are curious about them you can read about them here and here.

I just couldn't resist, loooved that tv show! :)


Do you have a nail polish that you were looking forward to but ended up being disappointed by it?


*Picture credit: Moviegoods 



Thursday, December 12, 2013

Marcelle CC Cream / Review...

My tube of Estée Lauder DayWear BB Cream is done! Empty to the last drop, I simply ended up loving it and there's a good chance I'll repurchase next it summer.

Now it's December and thinking about getting something a little more moisturizing I wanted another one-step do-it-all. I'm done with the whole moisturizer and foundation bit in the morning, for now anyway.

The contenders where Diorskin BB Cream and Chanel CC. Both have a beautiful creamy texture, penetrate quickly and give a soft luminous finish to the skin. I almost fell for Chanel but at sixty something dollars I didn't want to go there since I've splurged quite a bit lately and I still would love to get Accent the blush from Chanel Nuit Infinie Holiday 2013 collection.

Talk about having my priorities straight! Makeup instead of skincare? Yup, I'm vain!!!

The whole alphabet theme is a little annoying really because I haven't seen much difference between BB and CC so far from swatching on my hand. This I did with some of the brands available here, Estée Lauder, Dior, Clinique, Clarins, Vichy and Chanel. The only thing I've noticed is that CC's seemed a little more moisturizing and so for winter this was what I wanted.

Now the price was a deterrent on most of these, even Clinique is close to $50.00!

Drugstore? Well, I haven't had much luck with the lower priced brands this year and figured why go there if it's to still get a high end CC after a few weeks of being disappointed? You just can't get samples of those and some you can't even try for there are no testers. Still I went to the drugstore looking and stumbled on this one from Marcelle.

Marcelle CC Cream...

Regular priced at $29.95, I purchased mine on special at $19,99. Now that's what I call a good deal!




Product description and claims as per Marcelle website...

Pure 24K gold has been infused into Marcelle’s Complete Correction Cream to diminish the appearance of dark spots and skin tone imperfections that can be caused by sun exposureor the aging of skin. The formula’s lightweight consistency and ingredients provide full coverage and leaves your skin feeling smoother, firmer and highly moisturized. Radiance is boosted to give your complexion a perfect glow! With SPF 35.
12 IN 1 MULT I-BENEFITS
  1. Corrects and helps prevent the appearance of dark spots and imperfections
  2. Offers complete coverage
  3. Evens out skin tone and texture
  4. Controls shine
  5. Provides anti-dull radiant complexion
  6. Allows long-wear hold for lasting perfection
  7. Reduces fine lines and wrinkles
  8. Reverses the signs of aging
  9. Favours and improves skin elasticity
  10. Protects skin from environmental stressors
  11. Offers immediate and intense hydrating benefits
  12. Soothes and calms dry/damaged skin


What I like about it?

Fragrance free, it covers well, still controls shine on my nose (although not quite as well as Estée Lauder) and mostly, give my skin a nice natural satiny finish. It's not matte like some others I've tried like Vichy or Clarins for instance which looked stiff on my skin. Lastly it's quite comfortable to wear and so I feel my skin is getting some moisture.

The texture is not as thick as Estée Lauder's BB but not as liquid as a regular foundation.

According to Marcelle this would appear to be the perfect product to use in the morning but the fact is I didn't buy this CC cream for all it's claims but more for how it felt and the SPF.

What I don't like about it?

The container! There's no way to know how much is left in it and no way to know if I'll get the lats bits with the pump. Others like Dior come in a tube with a pump which I think is quite smart but not this one. Rethinking the packaging would be a good thing in my view. It may look somewhat more luxurious but in fact it's not a smart container.

Do I recommend Marcelle CC Cream? Yes.

Despite it's bad choice of packaging, Marcelle has come up with a good affordable option that in my view would be suitable for normal to combination/oily skin. Someone with dry skin may have no other choice than to use a moisturizer underneath because I don't think this would be enough.

As with any skincare if your skin is sensitive or is acne and/or clog prone, either getting a sample or patch testing would be advise.
  • Ingredients Active

    OCTINOXATE,TITANIUM DIOXIDE
  • Ingredients

    ACRYLATES/DIMETHICONE COPOLYMER,ALOE BARBADENSIS LEAF JUICE,ALUMINA,ALUMINUM STARCH OCTENYLSUCCINATE,ANHYDROXYLITOL,AQUA/WATER/EAU,BIOSACCHARIDE GUM-1,BIS-PEG/PPG-14/14 DIMETHICONE,BUTYLENE GLYCOL,CAMELLIA OLEIFERA LEAF EXTRACT,CETYL PEG/PPG-10/1 DIMETHICONE,CHAMOMILLA RECUTITA (MATRICARIA) FLOWER EXTRACT,CICHORIUM INTYBUS (CHICORY) ROOT EXTRACT,COLLOIDAL GOLD,CYCLOHEXASILOXANE,CYCLOPENTASILOXANE,DIAZOLIDINYL UREA,DIMETHICONE,DIMETHICONE CROSSPOLYMER,DISTEARDIMONIUM HECTORITE,GLYCERIN,HDI/TRIMETHYLOL HEXYLLACTONE CROSSPOLYMER,HEXYL LAURATE,HYDROLYZED PRUNUS DOMESTICA,HYDROLYZED WHEAT PROTEIN,IODOPROPYNYL BUTYLCARBAMATE,IRON OXIDES,ISODODECANE,ISOPROPYL MYRISTATE,JOJOBA ESTERS,MICA,OCTINOXATE,PISUM SATIVUM (PEA) EXTRACT,POLYGLYCERYL-4 ISOSTEARATE,POLYMETHYLSILSESQUIOXANE,POLYSORBATE 20,POTASSIUM SORBATE,PROPYLENE CARBONATE,PROPYLENE GLYCOL,SODIUM BENZOATE,SODIUM CHLORIDE,SUCROSE DILAURATE,TALC,TITANIUM DIOXIDE,TOCOPHERYL ACETATE,TRIETHOXYCAPRYLYLSILANE,XYLITOL,XYLITYLGLUCOSIDE


What are your staple morning go to for good looking skin?



Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Guerlain Crazy Météorites...

Oh quelle folie!!!

This wasn't planned I swear!

Guerlain Crazy Météorites Radiance Powder...

If you've never tried a Guerlain powder before, if you've been somewhat intimidated by their fabulous Météorites Pèrles well now is the time to take the plunge and you better make it quick before this special edition is gone!

The compact version of Crazy Météorites is one of the most perfect finishing powder there is at the moment.

When I say it wasn't planned it truly wasn't.

My intent was to get Crazy Terracotta and be done with it but then...

... Several of my bloggerette friends started to post entries about this and their reviews were all extremely positive and their beautiful pictures made it almost impossible for me to resist. Argh!!! I already have Météorites Travel Touch in Mythic (not reviewed yet) which has become after one application a favorite and in fact in my opinion it should actually be called "Perfect Touch". Although Travel Touch is indeed perfect it's not very convenient to carry in one's purse since I have the loose version.




Guerlain's holiday 2013 is called Crazy Paris and on both Crazy Terracotta and Crazy Météorites compacts you find the number 68 for Guerlain's Champs Élisées address (thanks again Sunny!). My only criticism is the compacts themselves. Although it's quite perfect for Crazy Terracotta, they could have created something different for Crazy Méréorites. It would have been smashingly beautiful had it been black like the Crazy Pèrles.


The beautiful pattern of Météorites Crazy Pearls Illuminating Powder - Pure Radiance,
 black lacquered metal case with a touch of hot pink! $67.00 CAD


To please loyal fans, the cult pearls offer a play on their legendary combination of six shades: beige and rosy beige to even out the skin, mauve to refresh, white to light up, gold to illuminate and pink for a healthy glow. The subtly pearly Météorites light up the face with a delicately satiny halo, discreetly perfumed with the inimitable powdery violet trail. 
In a wild decoration the letters “Champs-Élysées” dance in full colour, and seemingly in three dimensions, all around the black lacquered metal case.* 


The difference between the Crazy Pèrles and the compact? The Crazy Pèrles Illuminating Powder like the name points to, have a little extra light to them creating more of an illuminating effect. In other words they create a more shiny look but not to the point that one's face would look like a disco ball. The compact adds a more natural softness to the skin in other words a light radiance, which I personally find it more appropriate for daytime. The finish looks beautiful under any lighting and is quite subtle. I know this may appear a little confusing since illuminating and light radiance are similar adjectives but believe me they are not the same and you truly do have to try these on your skin to see the subtle difference.

Why is this one so worth it?

The delicate beautiful finish it provides would be enough for me but there's more. The light violet fragrance makes it a joy to use in the morning especially when it's cloudy/snowy/cold outside and... The price!

$82.00 CAD

Wait what? The price???

Well, this is in a way the "cheap" version of Météorites Voyage. Have you ever seen the original compact? A beauty! I think I could actually sell a kidney for it if scalpels frighten me so much!


This compact goes for $170.00 USD!!! 


Ok it's refillable so you will have it for a long time but like I said, I'd have to let go of a relatively useful organ to get it, or, win the lottery! This beauty along with Estée Lauder's Ru Yi, is quite simply one of the ultimate makeup splurge readily available. Did you know I had a thing for Beautiful Compacts?

Météorites Voyage, the quintessence of colour-blending expertise is revealed in an exceptional case to reproduce the purest radiance on the skin. A blend of matte and pearly shades, an ingenious mixture of six correcting or light-enhancing colours to deliver the purest radiance to all complexions: pink to refresh the complexion, green to diminish redness, white for a brighter complexion, mauve to catch the light, gold and pearl to add a perfect touch of radiance to the face…**

The pattern of Crazy Météorites Radiance Powder compact is not as intricate as Voyage but I think that on skin you'd have to look at yourself in a magnifying mirror all day to really see the difference. The finish of Mythic is slightly pinker and has a little more subtle glitter to it. As mentioned I have the loose version of it and although I can detect a little more "lightness" with Mythic, Crazy does a beautiful job in the radiance department. Some say it's more vibrant due to the pink but this I believe actually depends on the lighting. If I were to stop and think hard about the difference between them, looking at myself in a normal mirror, I'd say Mythic makes my skin look a little paler than Crazy but honestly, the difference is extremely subtle.


On the right you can have a better idea of the gold but the pink the colors are actually more true on the right.


Quite a "Crazy" splurge but given the fineness of this powder it'll take sometime before I hit pan on this one. I believe that just like Crazy Terracotta, this version of Météorites should also be part of Guerlain's regular line up. Oh and don't be fooled by the flatness of the picture, you really have to see this one in person to be able to appreciate it's true beauty.

To revive winter complexions and sweep away dullness, Guerlain gives a “crazy” tangy pink, in its limited-edition Météorites compact powder to creating a radiant and glowing effect.
The original gradation of the legendary shade 01 revived with pink, to refresh dull complexions and offer a beautiful springtime glow.***


Crazy Terracotta and Crazy Météorites come in the same compact and in the same black velvet pouch with pink stitching on the openings and the Guerlain name embossed on them. A little annoying when you own both since in the morning I never know which is which!

Ok, ok, I won't cry over that especially since I use both anyway! :)

I prefer to play it with a soft blush brush instead of a big face one for a more precise application. No fall out whatsoever, just like for Crazy Terracotta. These powders are so finely milled and tightly pressed that you may have the impression that nothing is going on your skin but believe me, they do show up.

I do believe that once you've tried a Guerlain powder there will be no turning back! Really!

Guerlain Crazy Météorites with it's "Spring time glow" is in my book one not to miss and boy am I ready for warmer days!


What was your most recent big beauty splurge?


*, **, ***: as per Guerlain website.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...