Power duo-Almay smart shade CC luminous primer & smart shade anti aging foundation

Didn’t expect to be reading Almay in the title, did you…..

Think again ladies, because I am sharing my ‘event makeup’ power duo.  I’m amazed at how these 2 products hold up under lights and over time.

I work in the entertainment industry (and don’t think it’s the red light district because its NOT that or anything that involves a pole).  Occasionally there are times when I am ‘to be seen’ in front of a camera or make some type of appearance and I need products that work!  Of course, I’d love to have my own personal makeup artist but let’s face it, I’m still waiting for my big break.

I’ve used many MANY MANY different types of primer and foundation duos in my lifetime….and some of them worked well or very well and some of them were complete fails!  This particular duo is one that I am quite enjoying.  Please continue reading so I can tell you all about it.

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FEATURES & BENEFITS:

  • New Almay ToneMimicTM technology helps to create an even better skintone match by adjusting to the essential pigments of your skin
  • Makeup contains shade-sensing beads that are activated once applied
  • Smooth, lightweight formula blends easily for mistake-proof application in three, simple to select shades that work across a wide range of skintones
  • Hypoallergenic, Dermatologist tested, made for sensitive skin, oil free
  • Non-comedogenic so it won’t clog pores
  • UVA/UVB broad spectrum protection

 

Canada_Almay Smart Shade CC Luminous Primer

 

FEATURES & BENEFITS:

  • Ultra-creamy formula provides medium, buildable coverage
  • Brightener contains skin brightening pearls to help give eye area the appearance of a more refreshed look
  • Concealer corrects to help even out skin tone, diminish the appearance of blemishes, improves the appearance of discolouration and minimizes redness.
  • Non-comedogenic so it won’t clog pores

So yes, I’ve outlined the benefits but you want to hear my thoughts (or maybe you don’t….but then why are you still reading?)

I just love the way this combination ‘finishes’ if that even makes sense.  It has the right amount of coverage and sits perfectly on my skin.  It’s not a heavy combination and doesn’t look or feel cakey.  The skin adjusting formula really works for me and the luminous primer, while slightly pink plays oh-so-nicely with the smart shade foundation.  I wasn’t disappointed.  I thought the light/medium shade may have been too light for me but this is the ‘RIGHT’ shade for me.  Even better, the Almay smart shade bronzer (which I am not talking about here yet), can be used to give you the perfect amount of ‘summer’ if the smart shade ends up being a tad too light.

So here are photos of me wearing the primer & foundation.

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This photo was taken post an event I helped host-wear time for both primer and foundation was 7 hours at this point.  While there is a tinge of breakthrough on my t-zone, keep in mind, I did NOT touch up AND was in several non air-conditioned spaces during the night.

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This was taken in the washroom (Canadian word for restroom) at my dear friend Patricia’s wedding reception. Please look past the enormous blemish (zit if you’re nasty, I’m channeling Janet Jackson-anyone get that?) and my turkey neck.  This is approximately 4 hours wear, including almost an hour in the car-Patricia is SO worth it. I like how this looks like my face, not my face with a ton of foundation on it.

So there you have it.  I like this primer and foundation duo because it’s easy to apply (I use my fingers in a pinch but you could use a brush of course or even a beauty blender!), and wears nicely on my face!  The smart shade part takes away the guesswork, not to mention the “Why does it look like Meredith’s face and neck are a different color in that photograph?” question.

Because it’s me, I do have one small hang-up about the primer.  WHY DOES IT HAVE TO BE IN A GLASS BOTTLE? I am so klutzy and I know it’s just a matter of time before the bottle slips out of my hand and shatters all over my granite tile.   You know, like the eyedropper for my phytomer gel did.  Oh, I didn’t tell you about that? Pffffffttttt.

Other than that, I really truly AM enjoying these products and will continue enjoying them until it’s time to contemplate a repurchase.

Anyone else have any thoughts on Almay? These 2 products or something else you’ve tried?  I will be telling you about the liquid lip balm in a future post, another love of mine.

 

Sharing the love-taking products for a test drive, office edition! L’Oreal Paris lipstick and nail polish!

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE LOVE LOVE blogging.  But what am I to do when a company as generous as L’Oreal sends me several lipsticks at a time with nailpolishes?  Do I use the lipstick and nailpolish once or twice and move on?  Will I come back to it or discover it in my collection months later and have to toss it?

Ahhhhhhh #beautybloggerproblems RIGHT?

My solution?  Pass this product on to a fabulous co-worker who has volunteered to give her thoughts/opinions about it.

In this case, meet Roselyn-she’s beautiful and the perfect guest poster for the L’Oreal Paris limited edition privee lipsticks and polishes.  She took these products for a test drive and here are her thoughts:

When I was given the #610 lipstick from Eva’s NUDE line to test, I looked it up on L’Oreal’s website to see what the deal with this new line was.

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Here is a link to the commercial that first appeared: http://www.loreal-paris.co.uk/collection-exclusive/

In the short commercial, Eva Longoria says “it’s made for me.” I’ve been using this lipstick for about three weeks now, and I couldn’t agree more with her words. I have naturally tanned skin and dark features, usually making my selection of appropriate lipsticks to wear very minimal. I have to be careful with both colour and tone, as a lipstick just a bit different than what suits me completely changes my face (and not for the better). This #610 lipstick is a darker shade of pink. Before applying it, I put on a generic lip chap to soften my lips, followed by the lipstick. At first trial, I was shocked that this colour suited me.

The lipstick isn’t too bold, nor is it unnoticeable. It was a perfect shade of rose on my lips. I have been wearing it to work every day, which perfectly suites professional attire in an office environment. I also wear it out at night to dinner or when going out for drinks, and have been receiving a sea compliments. I usually dress in blacks and whites, but I think the lipstick can work with just about anything. As someone not usually comfortable wearing lipstick, I highly recommend this product. I love it!

I also asked Rose if she would try out Doutzen’s nude polish #600.  Now if you know me, you know that I often get my nails done ….but had a great experience with the L’Oreal ‘gel’ polish (shameless plug, read about it here).  So here’s what she thought about the polish:

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I am a fan of dark colours when it comes my choice of clothing and accessories, which usually leaves me to depend on my shoes and nails to brighten up my look. In the winter, that isn’t always the case as ‘Linkin Park after Dark’ is a personal favorite of mine. However, in the summer I enjoy my bright pink, orange, and salmon colours.

I was given L’Oreal’s Collect privee Nude #600 nail polish three weeks ago, which was the first time that my friends and family have seen me with something other than highlighter-bright colour on my nails in the summer. This polish is a very subtle tone, but is a beautiful tint of purple and grey mixed together. From initial judgement, I decided I wasn’t going to like it. However, once I put it on, my mind was changed. The colour was a perfect tone of purple that brought a very mature edge to my outfits, especially in the workplace. It was soft enough to suggest both cute and flirty, but was by no means dull. I would consider this a year-round colour, and would definitely suggest it to anyone as the colour goes great with whatever I wear.

And there you have it!  Roselyn was not paid for this review-these are her thoughts after using both of these products for several weeks!

Stay tuned for more coworker reviews!!!! Let me know if there is anything you’d like them to review!!!

Footlogix- foot deodorant spray review

I try to take care of my feet….especially in the summer time when they are ‘exposed’ and in public more often.  When I say taking care of, I’m mainly referring to aesthetics however, I do tend to visit the podiatrist (that reminds me, I’ve got to schedule an appointment!)  One thing I am very ‘aware’ of  is foot odor and sweating.  I’m a huge fan of cooling sprays, gels, and foot powders.

I was sent Footlogix deodorant spray for review. 

footlogix

The package says this:

This spray-on formula by Footlogix is specially designed to kill bacteria that causes foot odor. Containing tea tree oil and menthol, this product refreshes and neutralizes foot odors and leaves your skin feeling cool and fresh.

Sounds good right?

Directions:  Spray on all sides of washed, dry feet from about 4”-6” away. Air dry for 30 seconds.

I’ll be honest with you, I am not a fan of this product.  Does that mean you should not give it a try? Absolutely not! In my case, I have found that foot powders and gel based lotions work ‘best’ for me.  The product has a very strong smell...and while it’s not a terrible smell, I find it is a ‘consuming’ smell that will wrap its arms around you and hang on tight for awhile-especially if you are in a small space (don’t make the mistake of spraying it on your feet in your office with the door closed).   30 seconds for drying isn’t a terribly long time but if you are multi-tasking in the morning before work like me, I’m not sure where I could fit this into my routine-maybe during my 2 minute coffee gulp?  Maybe I should overhaul my foot care routine to try to fit this product into my rotation but for now, I’m going to stick to my foot powder that I’ve been using. For now, this product is with my husband-and I’ve had to say the same thing to him “It’s not spray and go, you have to wait 30 seconds.”

What’s up with your feet? Have any foot care tips/tricks you want to share?  Let me know!

*Thank you to NailPolish Canada for sending me this product for review*

Summertime-how about an Almay picnic!

This was a fun event-and so well done.  I loved the picnic theme.  As per usual, I don’t want to talk too much.  I’ll let the photos do the ‘work’ for me and then summarize at the end :)  (You’re welcome!)

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isn't this cute? Reusable lunch bags contained the almay products for the 'hands-on' tutorial.

isn’t this cute? Reusable lunch bags contained the almay products for the ‘hands-on’ tutorial.

My lunchbag containing almay smart shade products for my skin, eyes, lips!

My lunchbag containing almay smart shade products for my skin, eyes, lips!

Jacquie demonstrates how to use almay smart shade eyeshadow on a beautiful invitee

Jacquie demonstrates how to use almay smart shade eyeshadow on a beautiful invitee

Some of my fellow beauty bloggers got in on the action too….check out @jillojello and @thebeautyblogca getting ‘hands on’ :

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Now let’s check out the products:

IMG_3714Quite a nice bag of products, wouldn’t you say?

Almay smart shade anti aging makeup with SPF 30 in light/medium; Almay smart shade CC luminous primer

Almay smart shade anti aging makeup with SPF 30 in light/medium; Almay smart shade CC luminous primer

Very excited about these 2 items right here. Let’s face it (eh, see what I did there…..? FACE IT! Don’t worry, I’ll keep my day job), a beautiful face starts with a great canvas.  These 2 products work together to ensure a smooth, even toned face!

Makeup removers from Almay

Makeup removers from Almay

I’ve been a bigger and bigger fan of makeup remover wipes….especially when I work alllllll day long and then want to look fresh for an evening out!  A couple of swipes and I’m ready to begin again.  I like the towelettes-they are unfragranced and don’t leave my skin feeling tight.

almay smart shade eyeliner

almay smart shade eyeliner

I do apologize for the blurry photo. I have to admit, at this moment-this product is my ‘stand out.’  Why you ask?  It’s the color, it’s somewhere between a copper and chocolate brown with shimmer. It looks so good at the base of the upper lash line.  Complements my blue eyes wonderfully!

Almay smart shade bronzer

Almay smart shade bronzer

This bronzer also intrigues me.  Haven’t delved into it just yet but I’m interested for sure.   I’m in love with it already just for the polka dots!

intense i-color volumizing mascara

intense i-color volumizing mascara

I’ll be ripping this product open when I remove my lash extensions. I have heard great things about it.

IMG_3719Hmmmm, out of everything I have to say this is going to be a tough sell for me. I am not in agree-ance that blue eye shadow “works” on the eyelid of a blue-eyed gal such as myself.  However, Jacquie did give me hope that this could work for me and in fact even demonstrated using this product WITH the sponge-tipped applicator. WHOAH.  *gasp*-yes it’s true.  Let’s keep in mind that she is a professional though.

Stay tuned for a closer look at the products-more specifically 2 products that I am REALLY enjoying for flawless skin.  I’m a bit surprised that I am liking these 2 products SO MUCH!

Thank you to the lovelies at Almay who invited me to this event!  Well done!

Yet another reason to get your locks to Yonge/St. Clair- BlowDry lounge!

Creeping my work neighborhood……has worked out in my favor!

I had an event last week, a social outing-right after work.  No way I could style my hair in the morning, work the entire day and then head off to this event.  I wanted a fresh style-something pretty & voluminous.

Sure I walked by the blowdry lounge at least a hundred times. I noticed it was busy, sure I did….I looked at the website.  But after going to another blo dry bar chain and being fairly to moderately disappointed on a consistent basis (I won’t mention the name but I’ll give you a hint, the name of the disappointment rhymes with ‘Flo’), I was hesitant to give this place a shot.

outdoor

 

I am SO glad I did!

blowdry lounge

 

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First impressions? Fabulous.  Decor-pretty, clean, simple.  blow dry lounge has a RECEPTIONIST.  Yes, ONE person dedicated to scheduling, payment processing, inquiries.  I breathe a sigh of relief here-how many times I had to wait for one of the stylists to stop drying a client’s hair, to assist me with scheduling.  How many times was an appointment forgotten or overbooked upon my arrival? More than one.  But that’s the OTHER blow dry bars….not blow dry lounge. The atmosphere is friendly-not pretentious or stuffy.

My stylist consulted with me briefly about what I wanted.  She was friendly, polite, quick and efficient.  Then she started working her magic.  And it was quite magical!  She knows how to style….the shampoo, the product, the technique-perfect-o!  She gave me the full brush blow dry (head full of bushes!).

Just in case you are wondering, here’s a photo of me at the event.  I don’t like the photo for other reasons but my hair is incredible!

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I also popped over again for another blow dry-this time a bit more sleek.  I had a wonderful experience and my hair stayed frizz free for almost 3 days! YAY! Again, not my favorite picture of myself, but check my hair (and the 2 beauties next to me).

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And how about for up-styles? Blow-dry lounge has got you covered, as evidenced by my LATEST trip:

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I highly recommend blow dry lounge for your styling needs. They also offer haircuts AND threading (which I’ll be trying out soon).

blowdry lounge is located at  1343 Yonge Street in Toronto. Find pricing information and hours here.

 

Why I spend SOOOOO much time at Me & T studio

Follow me on Instagram or Facebook and you will know that I frequent Me & T studio.  Like…..a lot. Do you ever sit and wonder-why?  If so, keep reading…..if no, read it anyway!

meandt

Me & T studio is a hidden gem…..well for now it is.-I don’t expect it to remain hidden much longer!  The studio is located several blocks North of St. Clair subway station.  I happen to work in the area, making it even more convenient!  The decor is impressive, take a look.

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Shawna Rao, the woman behind Me & T Studio:

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Shawna has always had a passion for all things pretty but spent part of her career in Nursing.  That commitment and care translates to her service delivery at Me & T. She has what could be considered a ‘cult’ of LOYAL clients who flock to her for her artistic flare and precision.

Me and T Studio offers Blow Outs, nail services, spray tanning, facial waxing, and lash extensions.  I’ll say that the only thing I have NOT experienced (at the time of this post being published) is a blow-out.  It’s only a matter of time before I have a seat in the stylist chair.

Nail Services:

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If you haven’t seen my nails, follow  Me and T studio on Instagram-they make frequent appearances along with the other incredible manicures!  3 Nail Artists are available to grant you your every nail/toenail desire!  Me & T offers a wide range of polish shades AND they also have CND Vinylux, AND shellac AND a great product called Artistic that I swear by.  It’s similar to Shellac, but has a bigger shade range, and (in my opinion) lasts longer.  These 3 individuals have B-I-G skill sets and turn out some of the most creative designs I’ve ever seen! They give good manicures too-and speaking of mani’s-manicures come with a sugar scrub AND a complementary paraffin wax that’s CUSTOM blended with your choice of essential oils. Um yes please!  I keep my nail game on point by booking every 2 weeks.  Since it’s summer, they will have a spot for you, but I highly recommend calling and making an appointment in advance.

Custom air-brush spray tanning:

aviva

One of my pet peeves and absolute faux pas is having pasty white legs in the summer.  AND SHOWING THEM IN PUBLIC.  Me & T can hook you up with the best bronze this side of the border. It’s not orange, it’s not streaky, and it dries in 60 seconds.  No standing around flapping your arms like a crazed bird, or waiting hours to put your clothes back on.  This is spray and go! It’s custom blended so your shade is your shade.

Waxing

Let Dylan expertly groom your brows or de-fuzz your face with precision and speed! Dylan has an artistic eye and matches brow shape to face shape expertly!  I’m looking forward to having my brows tinted soon too!

Eyelash extensions:

 

Lacking a bit of va-va-va to go with your voom? Visit Me & T for your lash extensions…Shawna will expertly apply individual lashes to your own for an instant bright eyed and bushy tailed look.  Batting your lashes was never so easy! Just check mine out…..

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And did I mention the makeup?  Oh, I didn’t? Well check this out-saw it and couldn’t let either of these go:

IMG_3734O_O             MIND BLOWN!!!

So, meet the Novalash 24 hour cream shadow triptych in Black Eyes of Paradise:

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OH EM GEE-look what it says on the website:

The NovaLash 24 hour eye shadows are a semi-permanent cream formula, designed as “extended-wear” cosmetics, to eliminate the need for any retouching throughout the day. The shadows can be worn for an extended period of time without smudging, creasing, fading or wearing off. NovaLash Cream Shadows and Liners are easy to apply and easy to remove. Once applied and set, the cream feels dry to the touch but continues to go on moisturizing the delicate skin around the eyes. All the shadow colors are based on hues found in artist Hieronymus Bosch’s ‘Garden of Earthly Delights’. They come in “triptychs” ( 3-color kits) that include a semi-permanent eyeliner pencil and an applicator brush.

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Don’t the shadows look luscious?

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Me & T currently has 2 different shade collections in the triptych-the one pictured above, and another which is called ” Forbidden Fruit”-I would check them out.  I’m no fortune teller but Forbidden Fruit is going to find it’s way into my life sooner rather than later!

Um you want to try these now, don’t you…..

And let’s not forget about keeping those lash extensions looking their absolute best-with the Novalash aftercare kit:

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This AfterCare Kit that contains Nighttime Conditioner and Cleansing Pads with pomegranate seed extract for conditioning, glycol and carbonate-free NovaLash Mascara, an extra mascara wand to comb through the lashes each morning, and an Aftercare Instruction Card.

In addition to all the fabulous-ness, Me and T has several promotions going on RIGHT NOW to include:

Tuesday Toesday- 20% off pedicures

Faux Glo Friday (and you better bet you will see me there for my tan on Friday)- 20% off spray tans.

just in case you’re looking, find Me & T Studio here:

on the web

on facebook

on Instagram

on twitter

 

Cellulite. I have it. Now what.

*I received this product for review*

Guess what?

I have cellulite. I want to get rid of it.  I won’t pull the trigger on liposuction due to the pain, downtime and cost.

So what do I do when I need to wear clothing that potentially could expose my ripples?

Vichy Cellu Destock Serum Flash…..probably one of the BEST cellulite creams available.

First, I have to give Vichy a lot of credit for being very up-front about what this product CAN and CAN NOT do.  Here’s what they say about Cellu Destock:

celludestock

Firstly, this product contains 3 active ingredients at their highest concentration combined with instant skin blurring effect:

-Pure caffeine: has a lipolytic action (breakdown of fatty deposits). It improves fluid drainage

-Hyaluronic acid: known for it’s plumping properties. In this product, it’s combined with glycerine to leave skin feeling moisturized.

-Salicylic acid: assists with texture, speeds up the elimination of superficial dead cells.

Cellu Destock’s 5 Silhouette Actions:

-Reduces the appearance of cellulite

-Targets stubborn zone

-Improves firmness

-Improves skin uniformity

-Improves skin’s texture

So how has this been working out for me?

Quite well actually.  I like the product-it smells pleasant, and is easy to apply. I like that it is cap-less.  It leaves my skin firmer. You’re going to have to take my word for it on the reduction of cellulite because I”m not going to take photos of my thighs….not brave enough!  It IS a temporary effect though.  But over time since I’ve started using this product (AND cleaning up my diet, AND exercising, AND increasing my water intake), I’ve noticed a *slight* reduction of cellulite in my thighs.

If you’re like me and have cellulite, but don’t want to go under the knife and have surgery, give this product a try!

It retails for $50.00CAD and is available at most mass-market retailers.

Thomas Sabo F/W 2014 preview!

I don’t like to say too much when I post Thomas Sabo photos.  I feel like what I say either doesn’t do the photo justice or distracts from the photos.  So, I’ll get everything out at the beginning and let you all drool over the photos. All sorts of fabulousness came together from all corners of the GTA to celebrate the launch of the new sterling silver Glam & Soul, Karma beads, watches and some new additions to the Rebel at Heart collections.  This was a fantastic event and a kind of ‘tradition’ that I would like to say I’m getting used to because I love it so much! Faulhaber Communications pulled out all the stops.  I have some favorite pieces and I’m sure you do too. I’d love to read what they are, so make sure you post in the comment section below!

karma

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One of my favorite pieces

One of my favorite pieces

hand model Melissa shows off a beautiful ring....

hand model Melissa shows off a beautiful ring….

Hand Model Kate displays my other favorite piece in this collection....hopefully it will be mine soon!

Hand Model Kate displays my other favorite piece in this collection….hopefully it will be mine soon!

One of several collections of gorgeous-ness!

One of several collections of gorgeous-ness!

Let’s not forget about the food….*almost* as beautiful as the jewellry.  Lots of thought put into display-check it out:

Macaron tree....look how many have already been claimed!

Macaron tree….look how many have already been claimed!

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It's the little touches.....

It’s the little touches…..

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Finally, a shot of me and my beautiful companions for the evening-do they know how to dress/pose or what? Professionals…..

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And because I’m a stickler like that, a shout out to Liz at Me and T studio for my nails, which coordinated perfectly with my dress:

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This event was well done-I didn’t doubt it would be.  I highly HIGHLY encourage you to check out the new pieces from Thomas Sabo-there is truly something for everyone and every taste.

Find Thomas Sabo:

on the internet

on twitter

on facebook

Huge thank you to Faulhaber Communications for inviting me to this event. I always enjoy it and appreciate all of your efforts in putting this together.

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Keep your hair nourished-with Live-Clean Age Resist Miracle Nutrition Oil

*I was sent this product for review*

Since I’m a blonde again, I feel as if all is right with the world.

Unfortunately, being a blonde comes with some less than stellar things….one of which is extremely dry ends.  I’m the person who takes ‘good’ care of their hair too-deep conditioning treatments, only washing 3 days a week, using a UV protectant on my hair. So I’m adding something new to my routine.

age resist miracle nutrition oil

LiveClean Age Resist Miracle Nutrition Oil to the rescue!  It’s a dual layer oil that’s used as a pre-shampoo tratment.  It contains Rosehip, Avocado and Jojoba Oils to smooth hair and make it more manageable.  Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein attaches to the hair shaft, increasing sheen, lustre and density of each hair strand, causing hair to appear thicker and fuller. LiveClean products are 99% plant derived, paraben, phthalate and Phosphate-free.

I’ll take it!

This product has a suggested retail of $11.99 CAD and is 100ml. You can find it at most mass retailers.

Stay tuned for an additional blog post on 2 other oils from liveclean!

L’Oreal Paris introduces Fall 2014 products!

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*I received these products for review*

as if the Miss Manga mascara wasn’t enough…..let’s take a looksie at all the new items coming for Fall 2014 from L’Oreal Paris.

 

Blur Foundation-Visible lift blur foundation

L’Oreal’s patended opti-blur technology diffuses light on the skin for a soft focus finish.  Lines are instantly erased and skin is luminous.

 

Skin Perfectors-Anti Fatigue

Perfect your nude look with a lightweight coverage that hydrates, corrects, evens and perfects skin.

 

Colour Riche Eye Shadow Primer

A unique color boost complex prevents shadows from creasing, flaking, and smudging.

 

Colour Riche wet quad

The intensity of a gel shadow with the ease of a powder-available in 8 shades.

 

Voluminous Butterfly Midnight Black Mascara

A new inky black formula intensifies the look of flared out lashes.

 

Superliner Mat Matic Eye Liners

Matte pigments are infused with velvety color, long wear and waterproof!

Pop balm

Hydrating color that glides on smooth-this one is *hot* pink! wOOt!

 

I’m looking forward to trying all of these out….if I had to pick my ‘stand out’ product, it would be the Anti-Fatigue BB cream.  What about you?