January 29, 2016

prep, prime, cover, conceal, bake, highlight, contour, blush, glow... it's a real process.

It takes a lot longer than 15 seconds to get a flawless face (contrary to what my INSTA videos may have you believe), and quite a few products. But they all serve a critical purpose and I've broken down my current skin routine below. 

  1. Start with clean skin and prime with Smashbox Pore Minimizing primer.
  2. Apply MAC Prep+Prime Highlighter in "Light Boost" to under eye area, forehead and bridge of nose.
  3. Apply Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Foundation all over face with foundation brush - then blend it in with a damp beauty blender, bouncing the blender over the face (as opposed to rubbing it).
  4. Apply MAC Pro Longwear Concealer under eyes in an upside triangle pattern and blend it out (mainly at the edges) with your beauty blender. Don't over blend or you might end up removing most of the concealer!
  5. Set concealer with a translucent setting powder (I love Ben Nye Neutral Set because it's amazing and doesn't give "flashback" from camera flashes) *Note: if you are a pro you can try to 'bake' your concealer, otherwise just sparingly applying it with a small fluffy brush will do the trick. Lightly set the rest of your face with the same powder and a large fluffy brush. 
  6. Using a Contour & Highlight Palette (I am using one by Anastasia Beverly Hills) apply the light yellow shade under eye, a little in the middle of forehead, bridge of nose, and on your chin/laugh lines - virtually any area that you want to bring lightness to. Take a dark contour shade and lightly apply to the area directly under your cheek bone (the angle should go from corner of mouth to top of ear although don't bring the product all the way down to your mouth). Also apply this colour to the edges of your forehead, and the sides of your nose. *Remember to apply sparingly and BLEND. For both contour and highlight, I love to use my Sigma F35 Tapered Highlighter Brush. Its pointy and gets the products exactly where I want it! 
  7. Take an angled blush brush (I love Sephora Pro Angled Blush Brush #49) and apply your desired blush to your cheeks focusing on the area and angle you applied your contour. Blend blush upwards to temple and bring it down a bit to the apples of your cheeks.
  8. Lastly, using that same Sigma brush or a fan brush, grab your favourite highlighter and give yourself some glow! I love MAC Soft &Gentle for a gorgeous, warm glow. Apply this to the tops of your cheekbones, the tip of your nose and the cupid's bow of your lips (for fuller lips!)
Bonus points for finishing with a setting spray like MAC Fix+ or Urban Decay All Nighter Setting spray! 

And there you have it. My current skin/foundation/glow routine... let me know what foundation you are currently loving in the comments (I am always on the hunt for a new one!)

- Lianne xo

January 12, 2016

7 products every MAC addict needs in their life.

Some trusty standbys, and some new favourites - here are my top seven products every MAC girl needs in their life (if they don't already have it!)

1. Mineralize Skinfinish Highlighter

Strobing, highlighting, JLO Glow... whatever you call it, you need these gorge highlighters to do it!

2. Pro Longwear Concealer

My favourite concealer for underneath the eye; it literally stays put the entire day, and it's not too thick and heavy (very blend able). 
    TIP: Choose a shade 1 lighter than your foundation for an instant brightening effect (under eye  only).

3. Blush in "Blushbaby"

MAC blushes are pigmented and easy to blend, and I chose this shade particularly because I find myself reaching for it almost daily. It's the perfect neutral "no-makeup" shade that is great for everyday, but also build able for a dramatic makeup look. And it's neither cool or warm so goes with any eye or lip colour.

4. PREP+PRIME Fix + 

This prepping and setting spray is a definite staple in your makeup kit. Mist the face after moisturizer before makeup application, and then again after you have powered and are all done. It will set the makeup and take away any "powdery" look... it's a MUST HAVE.

5. #286 Duo Fibre Blending Brush

I love this brush for a few applications, but I reach for it the most when I am blending out under eye concealer. It's super soft yet dense enough to blend it perfectly! It can also be used for eyeshadow/crease blending, and blending out nose contour.

6. #217 Blending Brush

One of my favourite eyeshadow blending brushes. It's made of natural hair so is a bit coarser, but I think that's what helps it blend so well. I use this every single time I do any kind of eye look.

I am a huge fan of MAC lipsticks, I love their texture, shade selection and staying power. Any colour works if you love it, but a few notable mentions are Brave (bridal fave), Blankety (great neutral), and Ruby Woo (gorgeous red!)

What is your favourite MAC product?

- Lianne xo

January 6, 2016

november/december beauty buys!

Happy New Year Lovelies!!!

Whoa! Between the Sephora VIB sale, a Shoppers "Spend Your Points" event, AND Black Friday, November and December were huge beauty months! I've organized it all by 'where to buy', so read on to discover some new beauty (I've highlighted the ones that are my faves).


Colour Pop Cosmetics Super Shock Eyeshadows in "Fringe", "Cheap Date", "Lovely", and "Eye Candy"
These shadows are loved the world over for their intense pigmentation, and I specifically purchased all 'metallic' finishes because I was looking to add some wow to my kit. These babies deliver!! And for only $5 a pop I couldn't resist getting four. Kylie Jenner's makeup artist Hrush (@styledbyHrush) uses them on Kylie, and applies them with her finger for the most intense colour deposit.
colourpop.com, $5 (USD).

Colour Pop Cosmetics Ultra Matte Lip Set in "Kitty"
The most perfect array of lip shades you will ever need! A neutral beige, a soft dusty rose, a mid tone warm pink, a rich violet, and a true brick red. All in an ultra-matte, kiss-proof finish. I love the price-points of this company - the whole set was only $20.
colourpop.com, $20 (USD).

Morphe 35P Plum Eyeshadow Palette
A 35 palette eyeshadow addition to my kit for only $22! I chose this versatile, wearable plum palette as it contains just the right amount of neutral and dramatic shades to create perfect bridal looks. I've heard good things about the pigments so am excited to try it for myself (at the time I wrote this it hadn't arrived yet).
Morphebrushes.com, $22.99.

MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in "Soft & Gentle"
These highlighters are beautiful and this colour specifically is great for almost all light to medium skin tones. Gives a fiercer 'glow' than "Lightscapade" and "Global Glow" (my other two MAC highlighters).
maccosmetics.ca, $37.


Marcelle 3-in-1 Micellar Cleansing Water/Makeup Removing Cleansing Cloths
I'm really liking Marcelle's line of makeup removers lately! Ever since I got eyelash extensions I've had to tweak my face washing technique and these two products have really helped. They are oil-free and paraben free and actually work to remove my makeup without clogging pores and doing bad things that bad products do!
Shoppers Drug Mart, Cleansing Water $19.95 / Cleanding Cloths $12.95.

Smashbox Photofinish Primer in "Original", "Light" and "Pore Refining"
These primers are the ultimate in priming your face. Aside from my Becca mattifiying primer, these are all I use in my kit. I've used original and light before, but tried the new Pore Refining one and really like the way it evens skin! It's comparable to Too Faced's Primed and Poreless primer.
Shoppers Drug Mart, $44 each (Pore Refining is $49).

L'Oreal True Match Foundation
This has been called a cult favourite and I believe I tried it waaaaaay back in the day but couldn't remember what it was like so I picked it up on my last trip to Shoppers! It really is a light blend able foundation. They come in a huge range of shades, and are separated by undertone (love), so whether you are yellow, pink, or neutral (a mix of the two) you can find your shade. I chose N3 and I think it's a bit dark for me so might pick up W2 to make my own custom colour. I recommend giving this a try if you're in the market for a new foundation!
Shoppers Drug Mart, $18.79 (sale).

Bourjois Happy Base Matte Serum
I read abut this primer somewhere and put it on my "beauty to buy" list. Picked it up during a "Spend Your Points" event at Shoppers and thank God I didn't actually pay money for this (and at $22 it isn't cheap!) It's supposed to give your face a matte finish and repel shine throughout the day and I was shiny like an hour later! WTH
Shoppers Drug Mart, $22.

Urban Decay All-Nighter Setting Spray
A staple in my kit for setting makeup! The Best!
Shoppers Drug Mart, $36.

Urban Decay Primer Potion
Another must-have... don't apply your eyeshadow without it.
Shoppers Drug Mart, $24.

ROC 24h Comfort Ultra-Nourishing Balm
I like to keep a super hydrating balm in my kit for people with exceptionally dry skin, and mature skin. Something like this ROC cream will help instantly smooth the skin and make the foundation go on so much nicer. I also like Vichy's Neovadiol Magistral cream, but this one is just as nice and a little less expensive.
Shoppers Drug Mart, $35.

Annabelle Skinny Brow Liner in "Universal Dark"
Just stocking up on my favourite brow pencil of the moment!
Shoppers Drug Mart, $22.

EOS Lip Balm
Now that it's cold and dry out, my lips are like the Sahara. Lip balm is a must to keep everywhere! And these one's are just so much cuter (sorry Chapstick!)
Shoppers Drug Mart, $3.99 (sale).

Quo Blotting Papers
These are great to keep in your purse or clutch for mid-day/mid-night touch ups! Blotting powder is good too but these take up less room and don't add any more product like blotting powders can do.
Shoppers Drug Mart, $6.


Living Proof Prime Style Extender
Tried this out from a sample I received a while ago and I liked how it actually did make my blowout last a bit longer. I purchased the travel size just to give it another try before I commit to the full size.
Sephora, $15.

Living Proof 5-in-1 Styling Treatment
I love this styling cream from Living Proof as well! Leaves your hair soft and frizz-free and helps reduce drying time. 
Sephora, $18.

CosmoCube Artistry Palette
I bought this on impulse thinking I needed it, and while it looks pretty cool, I really didn't need it; I have a stainless steel palette that works just fine. It got returned the other day.
Sephora.ca, $29.

Sephora Collection Pro Airbrush Concealer Brush #57
Love this brush for blending under-eye concealer! Definitely my new go-to brush!! The Sephora line of brushes is actually pretty great, and the "Airbrush" collection is really good, I have a foundation blending brush from this line that I love as well.
Sephora, $29

Dr. Jart+ Pore Minimalist Black Charcoal Sheet Mask

I haven't tried this mask yet, so I don't have an opinion yet but have heard great things and my friend who works at Sephora says they are very popular! Black charcoal is supposed to be great for clearing out pores. 
Sephora, $9.

Sephora Pomegranate Eye Mask
This fiber eye mask is for "anti-fatigue & energizing" and claims to reduce signs of fatigue, and awaken and tone the eye contours. Apparenly these are inspired by Asian beauty rituals and I have to say they really worked! I applied these patches in the morning and felt my eyes definitely looked less tired! Our friends on the other side of the world know what they are doing when it comes to beauty. 
Sephora, $6.

Sephora Pearl Face Mask
This fiber face mask is for "perfecting and brightening" and claims to even out skin tone and help minimize irregularities. I love the idea of a fiber mask that isn't messy and doesn't need to be washed off (very convenient), and found my skin looked great after. These masks come in a wide range of types suited for almost any skin condition, so I highly recommend picking one up! 
Sephora, $8.

Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask
I never really suffer from more than the average chapped lips in the winter, but lately my lips have been like sandpaper! I have no idea what's going on but I turned to the much talked about Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask for help. It contains lanolin, and as a new mom who breastfed for 6 months, I am all too familiar with what how lanolin can help dry skin! I thought perfect this is going to work great! I applied it the first day and waited... still sandpaper. OK it will take a few days I thought... after a few days it did improve, however wasn't the miracle quick-fix I was looking for (I'm sure nothing is). Anyways, I would recommend this product as it definitely protects healthy skin perfectly, but as far as lips that have already succumbed to dryness, it takes a bit more time and effort to get them soft and smooth again.
Sephora, $30 (I know!).

I love this face cleanser specially developed for combination skin because it goes on like a mud mask then rinses and cleans like a foaming cleanser. You can really feel it working to deep clean your pores, and your skin feels great after. It works great but is gentle enough to use every day. This line of masks and cleansers really works, so I say it's worth the price tag! 
Sephora, $43.