FUN Lacquer First Impressions

Recently due to my obsession with Simply Nailogical, I picked up a few shades from Live Love Polish. The website is full of cruelty-free, 3 and 5 free brands, and many shimmery and holographic shades, which I love. It is also full of smaller brands like FUN Lacquer which is the brand I was the most attracted to. To try out their line, I got a duo-chrome with holo glitter, a pure holo glitter and a linear holo topcoat. This brand is very holo heavy as you can tell.


Cheers to the Holidays (H) is a multichrome polish that shifts between some of my favourite colours: purple, blue, orange and red. I find it is mainly a red-purple on my nails but that holo really comes through. This polish is available without the holo glitter but I wanted to go all out. This is opaque in 2 coats and easy to apply.
Black Holo Witch is pure black holographic glitter in a clear base, meaning it isn’t one you simply paint on for it to be opaque. You can wear this over any polish for that extra sparkle or sponge it on for the full effect. This is sponged on. Like all glitter, it can be a pain to remove so use with caution. It is worth mentioning this was the chunkiest polish and doesn’t always apply smooth when simply painting it on.

Thumb to pinky: Deborah Lippmann Fashion, OPI Big Apple Red, Nails Inc Swiss Cottage, Wet n Wild Black Creme, Sally Hanson Coral Reef

Finally, Diamond is their original holographic top coat. It is one of the more subtle holos which is what I was going for because I want to be able to see the colour under the shade when I wear it. That being said, in the right lighting, it is that gorgeous linear rainbow that I was hoping for. It does slightly dull the colours underneath but it is worth it in the right lighting. I tried it over 2 different finishes and several different brands for comparison.
As far as application, these polishes are smooth and easy to apply for the most part. I love the brush and the formula works well. The one thing I was a little surprised in was how small the bottles were compared to OPI, for example. They are totally unique and something that isn’t available in-store which was my main draw. All of that being said, I would buy these again in a heartbeat!

Til next time, ttfn x

$100 Shoppers Haul

I was the lucky winner of the Canadian Beauty Bloggers + #Music Glam giveaway back in February. I know right? I feel like the luckiest lady ever. This prize pack included over $200 worth of skin care, make up, white strips, hair care and a generous gift card for Shoppers. Lets start with what was in the prize pack!




From Olay, there are three Olay Regenerist Advanced Anti-aging skin care items: the cleanser, the moisturizer and cleansing brush. I passed the moisturizer on to my mom who uses this every day but the cleanser and brush are staying with me. I have been using and loving the brush thus far and plan to give the cleanser a go once I am finished the few I have open. From Pantene, I received the Intense Hydration shampoo and conditioner but also the Pantene Air-Spray which I have been loving! From Crest, I have the 3D White whitestrips with the new Flex fit. I find my teeth get extremely sensitive with these so Roxanne graciously took them off my hands.


I don’t have a lot of make up from COVERGIRL but of course, I do already own the COVERGIRL lipstick in Succulent Cherry. I love it but don’t need two! Also from COVERGIRL is the new Plumpify Blast Pro mascara and Trunaked Goldens palette which I haven’t tried yet (honestly, my eyes have been horrible) but I have heard many good things.

 Now, onto the $100 haul. I have been a lot more conscious about what beauty brands are cruelty free and so with this $100 card, I decided to add more to my collection. Directly before this card came, my Shoppers stocked up on NYX but I was a little disappointed in their lack of selection. Never-the-less, I did pick up two things: the NYX HD Concealer in Fair which I have heard SO much about and the NYX Liquid Suede cream lipstick in Stone.

Swatch of NYX Liquid Suede cream lipstick in Stone.

On recommendation from Sarah at workadaybeauty.com, I also picked up the GOSH X-Ceptional Wean Foundation in 11 Porcelain. I recently went through my foundations and discovered I only have two that work for me when I am this pale so ta-da, I picked up another which (first impression) I adore and matches me perfectly.

Swatch of the Annabelle Skinny Brow in Universal Medium (left) and Universal Light (right).
From Marcelle, I picked up an old fave (or three) of the Marcelle Double Precision liquid eye liner. This is super matte and lovely eye liner that I totally recommend. I also decided to finally pick up the Annabelle Skinny Brow liner in Universal Light just to see if it works out better than the Universal Medium.


When I was there, I also needed some nail polish remover and the Quo Nail Polish Remover in Regular and Strengthening. I always forget which of the Quo removers I don’t like so I figured if I got one of each (except the blue/green which I just finished), I would know which one I disliked. As you can tell, I already used up some of the Strengthening remover. And then I went a little nuts with Essence.


I have tried and love and almost used up the Essence Nail Art Express Dry Drops that I have reviewed before but I also needed a new base coat so I also grabbed the Essence Gel Nail Polish Base coat. I have the top coat already to try as well so I am excited to see how these two work together.

I had hopped to pick up the NYX Proof It Waterproof eye shadow base but since it wasn’t at Shoppers, I got I Heart Stage eye shadow base from Essence. I am not sure if this is going to help prolong my eye shadow wear but I thought it was worth a try.

I noticed Essence also had a few new products out so I picked up two of their new Liquid Lipsticks and two of their new highlighters. I have wanted to find some drugstore highlights to try and also different shades so these are the Hidden Stories highlighters in Rose in Wonderland (pink-silver) and Enter Wonderland (purple-silver). On first impression, they are a tad glittery but I want to play around with them more since they are my first cream highlighter experience.

Swatch from L to R: Essence Hidden Stories highlighter in Enter Wonderland, Rose in Wonderland, Essence Liquid Lipstick in Colour Party and Peach Party.

The two liquid lipsticks I kind of love so far. They are super minimal packaging wise which I love/hate, but they wear beautifully. These are Colour Party (pink) and Peach Party (Coral).

That’s my rather large haul for you! I am ultra-excited to try out all of these new beauties. Let me know if you want to see any reviews and I would be happy to do that!

Til next time, ttfn x

Nail Polish Declutter

I have a lot of nail polish. I try and go through frequently and declutter but usually, I will just get rid of anything I had recently used that I didn’t care for. This time, I took the time to swatch (you might have seen on snapchat) every single shade and evaluate the formula and whether I liked the colour or if it had a purpose. I had a goal to get rid of 1/3 of my collection because I knew there was enough in there that I wasn’t using or loving.


  

So as I said, I went through with swatches (by the way, my snapchat is newkeybeauty), but I wanted to go through my process and progress on my blog as well. You will see I have some distinguishable favourite shades but I feel like there is still a variety of colour, texture and brand in the collection. There are also shades I don’t gravitate toward, or that I only go for certain shades of that colour so I was able to get rid of some super similar polishes. How many classic red nail polishes does one person need?


  
One other thing I noticed is how many textured polishes I really had especially for someone that doesn’t LOVE textured nail polish… I really don’t need one in every colour though there are some GORGEOUS exceptions like the two by Julie G. A pet peeve of mine is sheer polish and this exersize really highlighted the polishes that either didn’t end up opaque after even 3 coats, or didn’t dry/bubbled after it did become opaque. The formula just didn’t work for me so those were tossed too.


  
Finally, there were a surprising amount of duplicates that I didn’t realize were duplicates. For example, the Revlon Fearless and Deborah Lippmann It’s Raining Men are incredibly similar but I much prefer the DL formula. I am also leaning towards cruelty free brands more and more so some of my decisions reflected that.


  
I have a handful I am still so on the fence about but for now, that’s over 20 polishes I didn’t need or shouldn’t have out of my collection. Not quite the 1/3 I was hoping for but I am more comfortable with what I have. This also helped me discover what holes I have in my collection  (like a good royal blue?) so if you have any polish brand recommendations, please point me in the right direction. I am looking for CF brands specifically under $20!

Til next time, ttfn x

January 2016 Favourites & Unfavourites

Hey all! I have been pretty quiet around these parts this 2016 but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been playing with new things and rediscovering old. I am going to start with some exciting news (for me at least) and that is…

I will be joining the YouTube crowd starting as early as next week. I am very excited since YouTube is where I started my beauty obsession and ultimately, it’s where I wanted to end up. My first random favourite is actually the reason I am able to give it a try and that is my new Sandisk SD card. I was having a million and one issues getting my camera to film and tried many different things to troubleshoot my problem including but not limited to trying multiple SD cards (including one I had bought off of Amazon before this but it didn’t work either), upgrading the firmware on my Camera, trying every setting multiple times, watching a good 2+ hours worth of YouTube videos to figure out the different settings and what might be optimal, and then finally, going to Best Buy and picking up this 32GB class 10 baby. Ain’t she lovely?


Not even remotely along the same lines, I have been loving the Jasmine scent from Demeter**. It seems to have mixed reactions but honestly, I just love it. This is a lovely scent for the home or to wear and I can foresee me wearing this quite a bit in the spring. It is floral but very fragrant so blending it with other scents to tone it down might be your best bet and that’s what I do.

For skin care, there have been two major key elements joining my regular routine: serums and sheet masks. I have tried both before but didn’t care about them enough to incorporate them into my daily or even weekly regimen. This time around with my mind a little more open to the possibilities, I started using the many THEFACESHOP sheet masks I ordered on Boxing day. These sheet masks seem to stick to my skin and fit my face shape well. Each mask does actually appear to do something different too which was my first question when I ordered the amazing variety I did. They are a variety of hydrating, plumping, cooling, soothing, and have been a very enjoyable experience thus far with my favourite of them all being the Cucumber sheet mask.

As for serums, I switch daily between the Murad Environmental Shield and Philosophy Time in a Bottle. If I had to pick, I prefer the consistency of the Philosophy serum since it is easier to spread evenly across your skin. My skin is noticeably brighter with both of these under my morning moisturizer and that’s how I like it.


I have an oldie, a goodie and a newie eye product to talk about. For the oldie, I have been using the Annabelle Skinny Brow pencil in Universal Medium every single day. It can’t be beat. Quick, easy, lovely results, a good price, great shade range and cruelty-free to boot. I do think a decent spoolie on the end would make this product that much better but otherwise, it’s perfection.

The Voluminous Miss Manga mascara from L’Oreal is a goodie. I totally changed my mind about it since I used it the first time (what a mess) and have been using it pretty consistently since as early as November for some pretty gorgeous lashes. I don’t like how the wand bends still personally, but the formula and head work much better now for me.

What palette is that? Too Faced The Return to Sexy eye palette that’s what. I generously received for Christmas this 2015. Talk about glitter but I can’t get enough. If all Too Faced eye shadows are like this, sign me up. I will let those colours speak for themselves now…


I hate to basically bash a single brand but I tried to do a full face of make up using exclusively Benefit products and I just can’t. The Bad Gal lash, Watts Up highlighter, Positint, Stay Flawless primer and Fake Up Concealer just totally failed on me. Either they were underwhelming, patchy, not right for my skin tone or felt disgusting. Just to prove it, this is one of the pictures I took before washing it all off and doing something totally different.

You can tell by my face how I feel about this look. Other than that, I also discovered that the Rimmel Stay Matte primer isn’t for me after all. I may have liked it initially but at this point, I feel like my skin looks dry and even cakey when I use this with most if not all foundations in my collection. Their isn’t enough of a benefit to using this primer for me to keep trying so I will be passing it along.

The Essie polish you might have spotted is Parka Perfect and it is a beauty but I can’t get it to work. It will either bubble or wreck before it dries or both so despite the shade, I wont use it again.


Lets finish the post with my favourite face products and the show stopper this month is absolutely Oh Miley! from Marc Jacobs. This creme lipstick is flawless. The packaging is pure luxury but the formula and shade are right on as well. I don’t think I could possibly say enough good things about this lipstick.

I finally pulled out a new primer and foundation to try and discovered they are both winners. The Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless foundation should come as no shock. Everyone seems to love this stuff and I am no exception. It is a good shade for me and sits pretty well on my skin throughout the day. I feel like there is some oxidizing, but nothing out of hand. As for the primer, I feel like the Bare Minerals Prime Time is similar to my beloved Smashbox Photo Finish but a touch more lightweight. It almost seems more water based rather then silicone but it does give that slick finish you get with silicone primers.

I have been using the Jurlique Balancing Rose Water spray throughout the month as a boost of hydration and to bring a little more life to my skin when it’s looking a little on the dead, dry and cakey side. It feels nice and gives my skin a little more dew without going totally shiny. I am not much of a rose-scent lover but this is pretty alright in my books.


I think that’s about it for January. I can tell you now that February will be quite the mix of things if these first 11 days are any indication! Let me know what you’ve been loving lately. More importantly, let me know if I should keep doing this favourites posts!

Til next time, ttfn x

Fall Haul Y’all 2015

Hey all! Who was about to resist the holiday deals? I must admit, I finally gave in. I have been pretty good all year long about not buying too many beauty products but it was time to do a little bit of shopping!

dr brandt light years away brightening eye cream and color club nail polish

Skincare

Maybe it’s a little weird, but I am most excited about how good of a deal I got! I believe this product is no longer available, but it sounds like it is exactly what I have been looking for to fix my under eye problem. This is the Dr Brandt Light Years Away brightening eye cream which I got for $20. When I looked this product up, it was for between $50-$95 (there was a big price gap depending where you looked). I love deals like that! What this product claims to do is lighten the under eye darkness that I have a big issue with, minimize lines/wrinkles which I am starting to see and moisturize which never really hurts! I think this will last me quite some time and I am extremely excited to try it out.

dr brandt light years away and color club seven deadly sins nail polish

Nails

I picked up a mini 4 pack of the Color Club nail polishes from the Seven Deadly Sins collection. They are textured nail polishes with a mixture of purple and gold which is right up my ally. My only complaint is they don’t mention the names anywhere (but of course, I checked online and found out the colour names). I have never tried Color Club so I am excited to give these a go.

bite beauty best bite rewind and mac up the amp
bite beauty best bite rewind and mac up the amp swatch

Make up

I am obsessed (seriously obsessed) with lipstick right now and was able to get my hands on the Bite Beauty Best Bite Rewind set of 4 matte lippies. They have been sold out for a while but when I was recently at Sephora, they had a healthy supply available so I snatched it up right away. I am obsessed with these four shades. On the same mall trip, I did my first Back To Mac exchange and picked up a gorgous purple Mac Amplified lipstick in Up The Amp. I haven’t heard of it before, but I am so so obsessed with the shade and excited to wear it. One more lip product came from BH Cosmetics who recently launched liquid lipsticks. I grabbed Endora which is a pinky-rose shade. I am not a big liquid lipstick lover, but I thought I would give it an honest try.

bh cosmetics haul

bh cosmetics liquid lipstick, blush and contor kit, studio pro concealer

Also from BH Cosmetics, I finally picked up the light Blush/Contour palette that I have been looking at for months. I wont lie, I am a little disappointed that the shades were darker than they look online/on the packaging, but I still hope to make them work. I was pleasently surprised by how the Studio Pro Perfecting Concealer wheel in Light looked though. I have been hunting down a salmon concealer for my under eyes and this wheel of 5 gives me a good variety of colours (all of which I can use) including two that would be perfect for the job. I love BH Cosmetics.

bh cosmetics sculpt and blend set

bh cosmetics sculpt and blend set

Other

The finial thing I picked up from BH was a brush set that I have been thinking about for probably 2-3 years now. I picked up a similar set on Amazon which to me, eliminated the purpose of getting this 10 piece Sculpt and Blend set, but now that I am even more obsessed with make up, I wanted a second set to try out. BH Brushes are pretty standard but I have never had issues with washing them, bristles falling out, use, breakage, or anything and they are very affordable. I also trust BH Cosmetics as a company, they are cruelty free and I get money back through ebates whenever I purchase from them! These brushes are also very soft and thus far, easy to use.

Til next time, ttfn x

 

Whatcha Think About the Formula X Delete polish remover?

Hey all. I feel like I haven’t been showin’ any love to my nail polish/ nail polish related things lately and I have been holding onto this post for some time. In fact, this product has already come and gone from my collection of things. I am talking about the Formula X Delete Nail Polish Remover.

I actually didn’t plan on reviewing this even after taking some pictures because I was under the impression is was discontinued. I think what actually happened was it wasn’t showing up on Sephora’s Canadian website for a while and I am totally the type of person that’s like “It’s not exactly where I saw it last time, so it’s lost forever.” I discovered it was still in store to my disbelief and now, like magic, it has reappeared on Sephora.com

So, after that long winded introduction, what do I actually think of the thing? Well, I received this for Christmas 2014 and was thrilled to have a nail polish remover with a pump! It’s the little things guys. This product, however, when used with the flat cotton pads, is extremely annoying because the force of the pump actually shoots product through the pad and onto anything near by – your bed, the desk, your eye, anything. This is totally preventable by putting your fingers over top or using a thicker bit of cotton but it still was a bit surprising if I forgot or someone else used it. Along that same line, if you forget to lock it when putting on the lid, the nail polish remover gets everywhere.

Now the product. I actually wanted to test this against some of the tougher products so I have a nail wrap which is multicoloured with some glitter. I have used it with everything from reds to crimes to glitters and had the same or very similar result. For is text though, I thought the nail wrap kind of spoke for the power of this formula.

The Formula X Delete nail polish remover is just like any other for application. One to two pumps to soak the pad, press on the nail for ultimate exposure, and then slide off. After three slides, this some what glittery nail wrap was completely gone and I would say that’s impressive. I usually have to do some extra maneuvering to get everything but this wasn’t the case here.


One of the other perks is the lack of harsh nail polish remover smell. It does have a scent but it really isn’t nearly as bad as the typical no name nail polish remover I feel like most people use.

And now for the cons. To me, there are a few cons with this and the biggest one would be how sticky it is. It’s not so bad if you give your hands a bit of a moisture barrier before and after use. I’m not sure if it is the nail polish but it did happen every time I used it and made quite the mess. The next issue I have is the price. I can’t see myself spending $13 on a not so perfect nail polish remover especially of this size (150mL/5.4 Oz).


The verdict? I will not be picking this up. It was great while it lasted but I will be sticking to the big, stinky bottle of no name nail polish remover that doesn’t cost more than $5.

Til next time, ttfn x

$5 & Under Nail Product Picks

Hey all! Did you know I am freaking in love with nail polish? I know I’m not the only one here. Nail polish is probably the easiest thing to find for under $5 but there are some duds out there. If you’ve been around New Key Beauty for some time, you know how OPI Obsessed I am BUT did you know they are not the only brand I go gaga over. Check out these 5 under $5 nail products I love.

Revlon original nail polish (Walmart for $4-$5)

Colours shown L to R: Fearless, Posh, Graffiti

Pure Ice nail polish (Walmart for $2)

Colours shown L to R: Bare It All, Lucky Charming

Julie G by Jesse’s Girl nail polish (Online for $3.99)

Colours shown L to R: Rock Candy, Sugar Plum Fairy

Wet ‘n’ Wild Wildshine nail polish (Dollarama or Walmart for $1-$2)

Colours shown L to R: Black Creme, Putting On Airs

Essence Nail Art Express Dry Drops (Shoppers for $3-$4)

Bonus: OMG Nail Strips (Online 5 for $25 deal makes them $5 each)

All of these are easy to apply, last for a while when used with a base/top coat and have a fantastic price. At the very least, they are worth a try to see whether they are your new fave or not. Let me know what your recommendations for nail polish are below!

Til next time, ttfn x