Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Summer Beauty Wishlist

These beauty items have been at the top of my 'to-buy' list for quite some time now, I just haven't bitten the bullet yet.

Too Faced Semisweet Chocolate Bar Palette - This palette is beautiful! I'm especially excited for the Peanut Butter shade to the right of the blue. Shockingly, this will be my first highend eyeshadow palette - I know - I'm behind on the times! I just feel  like it's more of an investment so I thought long and hard on which one I wanted.

Mac Lipstick in Plumful - Described as a blossoming rose-plum. Though this isn't an overly summery shade, I think this will be a perfect everyday colour for me.

La Roche-Posay Anthelios - We all know that sun protection is extremely important - for our whole body. I've struggled to find a good facial SPF that is not greasy, or didn't irritate my sensitive skin. I'm hoping this will be what I've been looking for.

NYX HD Concealer - Lately, I've been obsessed with finding the perfect concealer. I've heard good things about this one but haven't been able to find it in-store, so I'll be ordering online. I'm hoping this will be perfect for under the eyes. I want a light-weight, brightening concealer with enough coverage to cover my darkness.

Koko Lashes in Goddess - Don't these look sexy? These look dramatic enough for a night out, but also not too chunky. They are handmade, supposedly easy to apply, and re-useable.

Have you tried any of these products? Let me know if you liked them.

What is on your summer beauty wishlist?

Pictures // 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Monday, July 27, 2015

Skincare Overhaul

Hey Guys!

I'd like to take you on this skincare overhaul/ journey with me.

My skin has always been problematic, starting when I was 11 years old. It has changed many times over the years. I'd think I found a holy grail skincare item, and then my skin would do a 180 on me. It has not always been due to seasonal changes either as it doesn't always return to 'normal' when the seasons changed back.

Before re-vamping my skincare routine, my skin was/had:
  • combination/oily
  • dehydrated
  • sensitive
  • cystic acne
  • dark scarring
  • 'dented' scarring
  • beginning signs of ageing around eyes and forehead
 In my mind, the first steps were to get a handle on my cystic acne, and rehydrate my skin. I am 21 years old, and feel that I need to rehydrate my skin and slow down the ageing process! Also, you should target the acne problem before trying to tackle the scarring problem, or you may end up in a vicious cycle.

These are the 5 products I've introduced into my skincare routine to start myself on this journey.

First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads - This is used as an acid tone/exfoliant in my routine. Previously I was using Clearasil Daily Clear with 2% salicylic acid which I found too harsh for everyday, it would literally burn the top layer of my cystic acne off and I'd end up bleeding - it was bad! These FAB ones are much gentler, yet still do the job.

Vichy Aqualia Thermal Serum - I saw this on Caroline Hirons blog (here) and thought this would be a good start on the re-hydration front also, it pairs well with the Clinique product below. I've noticed such a difference in my fine lines, my skin looks much plumper and healthier - as it should in your 20s.

The Body Shop Tea Tree Cool & Creamy Wash - I found the cleansing gel formula in this line much too drying to use all the time, but still felt the tea tree was making a difference in my acne so I am trying this one. My skin feels clean and not stripped after using this product.

The Body Shop Camomile Cleansing Butter - This cleansing butter is lovely. I use this when 1) I'm wearing a ton of makeup and want to make sure I remove it all, yes even eye makeup and 2) when I want a super gentle yet deep cleaning facial wash. You only need to smallest amount so this will last for ages.

Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief - This is an oil-free gel moisturizer formulated for re-hydration - just what I needed. It sinks into the skin quickly and looks cute on the bathroom counter ;)

Since integrating these products into my routine my skin is now:
  • more oily
  • less dehydrated
  • sensitive
  • mild milia
  • reduced dark scarring
  • 'dented' scarring
  • reduced the appearance of fine lines
My skincare journey is far from over but I will continue to share the new products I'm trying out here on the blog.

Please leave your recommendations in the comments. Also, if you'd like a more comprehensive review on any of these products, I'd be more than happy to do that for you.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Ipsy July 2015 Unboxing

Hey Guys!

Sorry for the lack of posts, time is in high demand lately, more so than usual it seems. I have a TON of posts planned (I'm literally on July 5 of my 'blog schedule' yikes), I am now waiting for the weather to be a bit better so I can get better quality photos with the natural sunlight, hopefully tomorrow!

For now, I'd like to share with you what I got in my July Ipsy bag.

This month's theme was Summer Lovin'. I feel that the products I got really do embody the summer theme well.

The bag is pretty cute as well, I love the bright colours. I will be throwing this in my handbag.

Octavio La Playa. A sea salt spray infused with algae extract. I love using a sea salt spray on beach days especially. This one smells really fresh and clean. It is also not tested on animals which is always preferable.

Aurora Gel Effect Nail Lacquer in 4 Alarm Fire. This is a beautiful hot pink with a touch of coral. I'm hoping this has the longevity like a gel polish, not only offering the shine. This will be perfect for the toes.

Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer in Park Ave Princess. I have this bronzer in the non-waterproof version and upon comparison they don't even appear the be the same shade or shimmer. Perfect excuse to keep both! I enjoy the one I have, and will definitely be using this one as well.

Vasanti BrightenUp! Enzymatic Face Rejuvenator. An exfoliating cleanser enriched with papaya, micro-crystals and aloe. This is paraben free, sulfate free, and 99% natural. There isn't much of a smell to this product which I appreciate. I just hope this is a gentle enough exfoliant for my sensitive skin.

Be a Bombshell Tinted Lip Balm in Ruby. No scent. Seems to have a nice tint when swatched on the hand, it looks like a classic pink though could look very different on the lips.

I am very happy with this month's bag! There is a good variety of products, and I will get use out of all of them.

What did you get in your Ipsy bag this month?

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Review | Boscia Balancing Facial Tonic

Hey guys, as promised here's a review of the Boscia Balancing Facial Tonic which I showed in a previous haul, which you can read - here. After using this product daily, for over a month I think I have a pretty good feel for the product. I like to test out skincare items for much longer before I share my thoughts with you.

This product contains beneficial ingredients for your skin, as you'd expect:
Lavender water to calm and refresh
Serine promotes softness and moisture balance
Glycerin to hydrate

The information about glycerin in skincare seems to be quite contradictory. I have read that it draws the moisture from the dermis up to the epidermis, ultimately making your skin feel more hydrated temporarily, but it's not beneficial in the long term. This article from references that glycerin has the ability to attract moisture from the atmosphere, if the humidity is 70% or above. Living in Halifax, where currently the humidity is 100% as I type this, this may be the reason this product is working so well for my dehydrated skin. Just something to keep in mind.

The scent of this product is refreshing and spa-like, and the mist is very fine. It is a true pleasure to spray this, especially on these hot summer days.

I use this product in my morning and evening skincare routine after acid tone, before eye cream. I also use this if my makeup is starting to look a bit powdery or cakey, and of course when I'm dying of heat.

The only negative I have to say about this product is the price - $30 for 150mL!

Some view this as just a fancy water, and would never spend $30 on such. However, I have noticed a significant difference in the dehydration and redness on my skin. This is probably not due solely to this product as I've completely revamped my skincare, more on that soon, but this facial tonic gets a big thumbs up from me!

I purchased mine from Sephora - here.

I hope you found this post helpful, please let me know if you'd like to read more like this. Also, if there is a particular product you'd like me to test out and share my thoughts on, put it down in the comments below.

PS - you can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @emilynmax

Monday, July 6, 2015

Drugstore Haul Plus Tangle Teezer

It's about that time when I share a few of the items I've bought over the past few weeks.

 Maybelline Brow Drama in Soft Brown - This product is great for those minimal makeup days on its own, or used to add a bit of extra colour after filling them in. It kept my brows in place all day without that stiff feeling. I'm actually preferring to use this over my Anastasia Brow Gel at the moment.

Maybelline Fit Me concealer in 10 Light - This concealer was featured in my last drugstore haul post (here), and I've picked up another, this time in 10 Light. This is a better colour match for me to cover blemishes and pigmentation. I use 15 Fair under the eyes and for highlighting. This concealer is very blendable, and the applicator makes applying a breeze.

Physicians Formula Bronze Booster in Medium to Dark - This bronzer has the slightest bit of shimmer in it, but is not sparkly, just adds a touch of glow to the skin. I've only used this twice, but I'm liking it so far.

L'Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte foundation in 103 Natural Buff - I finally bit the bullet. I had promised myself I wouldn't buy anymore bases until I finished one but... it was on sale. Oops! I used this today for the first time and I like it! It's not quite matte on my super oily skin, but doesn't seem to have broken up in the oil. I do need to apply powder throughout the day, but I've been wearing it for 15 hours so far and it's still on my skin. I'm impressed.

Tangle Teezer - This is a product I've had on my list for awhile, but really didn't need another hair brush. But, I was browsing Amazon, as you do, and there it was. Into my cart it went *shoulder shrug*. I haven't used it yet but I expect great things.

What have you purchased recently?

Friday, July 3, 2015

Summer Wardrobe Wishlist

Now that the weather is heating up, I've realized my summer wardrobe needs a bit of a revamp. I've condensed my wishlist into the top 5 items I hope to add to my wardrobe in the next few months.

My 'casual sneakers' are on their last leg, they've lasted me 5-6 years so I think it's time to say goodbye. I need a replacement, so I thought Toms would be perfect. They'll look good with skinny jeans, shorts, and dresses which is exactly what I need. I don't usually like the good of trainers with skinny jeans and dresses, but I don't always want to wear flats or sandals either. Really I'm just trying to justify another shoe purchase :) but I'm throwing a pair out so it's okay, right?
These sunglasses have been absolutely everywhere! They are super trendy, and not too expensive. The only problem, which do I choose?!

Taking it back to when I was a child. These are another item that I've been seeing everywhere again this year. I was seeing them a year or two ago and was never that into them then, but I am now. I prefer the darker wash ones, and a bit distressed.

I hate carrying around a purse when walking around in the heat. A backpack purse will be perfect for me, especially when doing fun things with Max like going to the park. It is cute, and functional.

5. Printed Jumpsuit
Zoe Sugg (Zoella), has been wearing this in a few of her videos and I am obsessed with it. It is quite a statement piece, but paired with minimal accessories, it'll look amazing!
What is on your summer wardrobe wishlist?


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