What’s on my mind now….red lipstick

Fall brings along the start of many things…..shorter daylight hours, everything pumpkin, warm cozy fires, and beautiful foliage.  Fall is also when I start wearing red lipstick again. After a summer full of balms and gloss, I’m happy to dig through the lipstick drawer and pull out a nice red…..

If you’re like me and love your reds…..L’Oreal Paris has got you covered.  Check out these 3 Colour Riche Reds that I snagged during tiff at the L’Oreal Beauty Lounge.

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They all look delicious, don’t they…..but let’s take a peek at each one individually.

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This is Frieda’s Pure Red-and I have to say the first of the three that I was ‘drawn’ to….it’s a blue based red that leans pink, right up my fair skinned alley.

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Next up, Blake’s Pure Red….definitely more brick-ish in terms of red.  This is the type of lipstick I’d wear after having my teeth whitened.  I like this color-it’s rich and has a ‘come over here’ type vibe about it. Very sex kitten in my opinion.

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And finally, J. Lo’s red-what I’d term a ‘neutral’ red or ‘true’ red’ -this is neither warm or cool toned.  IT’S JUST RED. And I love it.  This red is the type of red I’d wear with a t-shirt and jeans but also put this on for drinks with the ladies.  This red will take you from day to night for sure.

So what’s your story?  Do you love to rock a red lipstick in the fall/winter like me? Or do you wear reds all year round?

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I’m an adult-why am I still breaking out? Vichy Normaderm, help me please!

*I was sent these products for review-my thoughts are my own! Please be wary when reading blogger reviews-it is NOT a requirement to disclose whether one has received a product for review or not in Canada, but it IS good manners and ethics :) *

 

I thought I was through with breakouts after I hit 30.  Fast Forward to my 40’s-Yeah, wrong.  Granted, I do get breakouts less frequently….but they still come.  When they DO come, I feel that they are more ‘severe’ than they were when I was young.  It’s a different type of breakout too. Different breakout, different approach yields different (and better) results.

Normaderm by Vichy is not a brand spanking new line.  It’s the first time I’ve used it though.  So far, I’m pretty happy! My face feels fresh, clean -and NOT tight or itchy!  WIN!IMG_3751

Deep cleansing purifying gel

Details:

Normaderm Deep Cleansing Gel with Salicylic Acid, Totarol, a new purifying ingredient, and Eperuline to regulate inflammations. Cleanses and unblocks pores deep down and immediately soothes skin. Ingredient Innovation: Together Salicylic Acid 0.5% + Totarol, a new purifying active ingredient, limit the proliferation of propionibacterium acnes, the bacteria responsible for acne, and thus prevent the formation of imperfections. Eperuline, a new soothing ingredient of natural origin, helps regulate inflammations. Glycyrrhizinate Acid soothes skin and helps reduce redness. In a lightly scented refreshing gel. Results: Double purifying and anti-irritant action. Dermatological Standards: Allergy tested. Soap free. Tested on sensitive skin under Dermatological control. Non-comedogenic.

How to use:

Use twice daily. Wet face, work product into a lather; massage onto face avoiding the eyes. Rinse well.

My thoughts:

Love this!  I liken the fragrance in this product to a shampoo that I used to use in the 80’s called Aquamarine (which according to one of my YouTube subscribers, you can find in Dollarama-cool!).  This product lathers well and rinses off easily.

 

Purifying pore-tighetning lotion

Details:

The intensive formula ensures clear skin with salicylic acid concentrated at 0.5%. Totarol, a new purifying ingredient , inhibits the proliferation of propionibacterium acnes, which are the bacteria responsible for acne. Eperuline, a new soothing ingredient of natural origin, regulates inflammation.  Impurities are eliminated, and the appearance of pores are reduced for a more even skin surface and a matte effect.

How to use:

Using a cotton pad, cover the entire complexion with a thin layer one to three times daily. If bothersome dryness or peeling occurs, reduce application to once a day or every other day.

My thoughts:

Well, I was ‘Toner-challenged’ until recently.  I was using toner once a day (at night) maybe 3 times a week.  Um yeah, how about I’m supposed to be using it the morning AND at night and every other day.  Because I’m mid-breakout, I’m doing well with the 2x daily.  Should I experience dryness, I will use the toner once daily in the evening.

Hydrating acne-care Salicyclic Acid lotion

Details:

This lightweight, oil-free lotion is clinically proven to clear skin of acne imperfections in 7 days. In just 1 week of application, clinical results show significant reduction in inflammatory lesions by 20.10%, and reaching to a 63.92% reduction by the 4th week.

How to use:

Cleanse the skin thoroughly before applying product. Cover the entire affected area with a thin layer, one to three times daily. Because too much drying of the skin may occour, start with one application daily, then gradually increase to two or three more times daily if needed or as directed by a doctor. If bothersome dryness or peeling occurs, reduce appication to once a day or every other day.

My thoughts:

I’ve been using this in the evening.  Can’t say I hate it or love it yet, but I WILL say that I enjoy waking up to my blemishes shrinking significantly during the night.

 

I have high hopes and good vibes about the Normaderm line-and I’m going to continue using it! If you have oily skin and experience breakouts as an adult (I’d say 25+ years old types), give this a shot.

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Passport to Revlon Shake It Up in Shanghai-giveaway!

China has always been on my ‘travel bucket list’ -and even though I know I won’t be jetting off anytime soon, Revlon’s ‘Shake it Up in Shanghai’ Collection has the travel bug inside me ready to go, go, go!  Be sure to check out my Instagram for a chance to win  all  8 products in the collection!

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The Look:

Revlon Color Stay ShadowLinks in Moss and Khaki

Revlon ColorStay Eyeliner in Jade

Revlon Bold Lacquer Mascara in Blackest Black

Revlon ColorStay Gel Envy in Checkmate, Blackjack and Diamond Top Coat

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Nothing excites me more than a Smokey Eye that IS NOT greys or black….in the Shanghai collection, it’s a Deep Green.

Dare to Wear a Deep Green Smokey Eye:

-Apply shadow in Moss on the lid from the inner corner to the center of the eye.  On the outer edge of the eyelid, apply the Khaki shade.  Fade the colours together.

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-Line lashes from inner to outer corner.  Create an extra smokey effect by moving the liner’s sponge tip in a circular motion.  Finish with mascara.

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-Dab Shanghai Sizzle onto lips for colour intensity.

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-Alternate nail shades on every other nail, and be sure to seal with the top coat.

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Do you see yourself jetting off to any exotic location anytime soon? Go to my Instagram account, like and comment on the below photo for a chance to win the ‘Shake it Up in Shanghai’ collection!  Winner picked on October 16th, 2014!!! *Giveaway open to Canadian residents over the age of 18!*

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Toronto shenanigans with Kelly McKelly!

Who’s so lucky? I’m so lucky!

I got to meet Kelly McKelly while she was here in Toronto and we went all over Toronto. Well, not really….but we certainly got around.

Here is our day in a few words and mostly photos.  Yup. PHOTOS.

First stop, the Face Shop (Eaton Centre).  No photos inside the store, but here’s my portion of the haul.  Keep in mind, Kelly went back the next day and picked up more items! How could you not….look at all the goodness:

IMG_3725Then how lucky were we to bump into the amazing and fabulous Myles Sexton-so we did what we had to do-a selfie. Isn’t he gorgeous?

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We also spent time at the Illamasqua counter at the Bay. I picked up one of their new-ish  Matte lip liquid glosses and am kicking myself for not also picking up one of their *new* nude collection lipsticks.

IMG_3728As we wandered through the PATH system with the ‘goal’ being to make it to the subway, we hit up my favorite Rexall and I scored these gems (and said hi to Jenny, the manager):

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*please note, the Marcelle products are going to a wonderful gentleman in Florida named Lewis*

Then we went into The Body Shop and said hi to Anita the manager. I had been eying several products but settled on the body sorbet. Anita was kind enough to give us some samples of a blur type product for eyes and face (Kelly only slightly scoffed at the size or lack of size of the samples).   I’ll be going back for what I originally went in for, the dry oil:

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Phew! Finally made it to the subway.  We ended up dining at John and Sons Oyster House.  Neither of us had Oysters but Kelly enjoyed some Fish and Chips and I had the shrimp tacos.  Just to be scandalous, we also SHARED the homemade donuts.  They were worth every bite!

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Then, a brief stop at the New Balance store (and declarations that we were in fact the COOLEST customers in the store), off we went to Me and T studio.  How could I NOT take Kelly to Me and T studio?  I think she was slightly impressed.  Her hands and feet looked amazing, we partook in the candy bar, gushed over the LoveFresh products. And of course, let’s not forget these 3:

3 faves from Me & T

3 faves from Me & T

We ended up back on the subway and decided to take a load off at the Toronto Hilton.  There was an interesting encounter with a gift shop clerk during a search for overpriced Gravol, and then it was time to meet up with Jill and Melissa for dinner at the fabulous Montecito.  I’ll tell you right now I am SO glad I booked that restaurant. It’s definitely going to be a tiff hot spot and it was nice to see what they would have before they are booked through next year.  Get your drool bib out, here come the food photos:

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chicken

gorgeousgunnerlambragumargheritapizzaand now the desserts….because if you go to Montecito, you go ALL OUT:

Stay puft marshmallow man baked Alaska.  I ate it all. NO SHAME.

Stay puft marshmallow man baked Alaska. I ate it all. NO SHAME.

Chocolate torte with gingersnap and raspberries?

Chocolate torte with gingersnap and raspberries?

Chocolate chip cookie Ice cream sandwich

Chocolate chip cookie Ice cream sandwich

mekellyjillmelAnd because Melissa was gracious enough to take the above photo, I will post the next photo so you can see how wonderful SHE is!

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Is that enough for you? It certainly was for me!  I left my house that morning, arrived in Toronto at 10:30.  I got home at midnight.  Long day much? No matter it was TOTALLY WORTH IT.  Hope Kelly can say the same…..

#beautyunited Olay fresh effects Acne control scrub-another weapon in my adult acne battle!

*I was sent these products for review-my thoughts are my own! Please be wary when reading blogger reviews-it is NOT a requirement to disclose whether one has received a product for review or not in Canada, but it IS good manners and ethics :) *

Ah the continuing saga of adult acne & breakouts!  I’m still going through it-even in my 40’s-something I thought I would never say! In addition to changing up my cleanser, toner, and treatment lotion, I’ve also added a scrub to the mix.  In this case, it’s the Olay Fresh Effects Acne Control Scrub.

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I’ve used Fresh Effects products before, despite being out of their ‘preferred age range’-apparently this product line is suited for the 20-somethings.  But I have been known to bend the rules and scoff at society (*gasp, no not YOU Meredith*), so I thought this would be a perfect addition to my ‘oily skin’ routine. I was also curious as to whether this product had any similarities to my beloved ‘Out of this swirled’ fresh effects scrub.

Details:

Olay Fresh Effects Acne Control Scrub Salicylic Acid Acne and Blackhead Clearing Exfoliant with mandarin orange and green tea essence is formulated with salicylic acid. It penetrates pores to eliminate most blemishes and blackheads. The exfoliating microbeads then exfoliate to clear dead skin cells that can clog pores.  Exfoliating microbeads clear up most blemishes and blackheads.

Usage:

Apparently this product CAN be used daily, even twice daily.  However, I’m using it 2-3 times a week. It does remind me of the ‘Out of this Swirled’ but I liken it to the Clean & Clear morning burst line.  You’ll see why after I show you this photo:

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Looks the same as Clean & Clear doesn’ it?  Anyway I adore this scrub and am glad to have it to use.  The exfoliating particles truly are MICRO-beads so my fear of scrubbing my skin off is gone.  The scent is pleasant and the scrub rinses off clean.

I recommend you give this a try-it’s a great product to have in your shower or on your counter top.  I use it 2-3 times a week-and when my skin is acting out, I use it everyday!  It really does work!

New products from Vichy! Idealia Eye contour and Idealia BB cream!

 

*I was sent these products for review-my thoughts are my own! Please be wary when reading blogger reviews-it is NOT a requirement to disclose whether one has received a product for review or not in Canada, but it IS good manners and ethics :) *

 I’ve raved about the Idealia serum way back when….and for good reason! It’s amazing! So check out these new products from Vichy (well one is the serum :) ).

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Idealia Eyes

-Corrects dark circles

-Smooths fine lines

-Reduces shadows

This product is a ‘hybrid’ product for the eye area.  The eye contour idealizer merges both eye care and make up (read: it’s tinted) with technology using ‘Double Correction’-both optical and biological.   It is a fast absorbed, light texture that is rich and hydrating with no oily residue.

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Idealia BB cream

-Illuminates

-Evens the complexion

-Moisturizes

-Smooths fine lines

-Refines skin texture

-Protects

This BB cream is formulated with  pink corrective mineral pigments to instantly extinguish the grey tone.  This conceals imperfections, evens and illuminates the complexion, and erases blemishes.  This product is enriched with Kombucha, which is an active ingredient that reduces grey tones in the complexion.

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Idealia serum

-Paraben-free

-Fragrance free

-Allergy tested

-Formulated for sensitive skin

-Dermatologist tested

Refines skin texture, visibly reduces the appearance of pores, and illuminates complexion for more youthful-looking skin.
Featuring Vichy’s first behavioral molecule association, LR2412 + LHA. Inspired by the skin’s natural rejuvenation process, LR2412 accelerates skin’s repair and boosts its resistance to external aggressors. Micro-exfoliating LHA helps to stimulate renewal and reduce the appearance of surface pigmentation.

 

I’ve already had great results with the Vichy Idealia Serum, so I envision even better results with the Eye contour and BB cream!

 

Vichy Normaderm Night Detox-another weapon in my adult acne battle!

*I was sent these products for review-my thoughts are my own! Please be wary when reading blogger reviews-it is NOT a requirement to disclose whether one has received a product for review or not in Canada, but it IS good manners and ethics :) *

If you’ve read my recent posts or watched me on YouTube (shameless plug), you’ll know I’ve been struggling with breakouts.  Yes, at MY AGE!!! WTH?

I want to share with you a product that I’m actually enjoying and that I feel is really contributing to my success in working with my oily skin (not against it).

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Details:

Those with oily, blemish prone skin (ME) suffer from an over production of sebum during the night. By morning, the skin can feel dirty and dull with additional blemishes. New Normaderm Night Detox targets the skin overnight by helping to control the production of sebum while purifying the skin.

Upon awakening:

  • Sebum production is controlled
  • Imperfections appear reduced
  • Pores tightened
  • Radiant complexion
  • Even skin texture
  • Skin feels clean & fres

Powerful formula yet kind to the skin. The texture is light and non greasy leaving the skin with a clean fresh sensation.

How to use:

Apply nightly to clean, dry skin. Avoid the eye contour area.

My thoughts:

I’ve been using this for 2 solid weeks (at the time of posting) and I love it!  When I wake up, my skin isn’t a complete grease pit and my blemishes DO look smaller or like they are going away.  Exactly what I want.  This product is fragranced but not heavily. It applies easily and it isn’t drying.

 

It’s weird-but I love it! Swedish Dream Sea Salt Soap

Bought this one myself people….was browsing a card and gift store close to work, saw it and bought it on impulse.  This is normal for me-the impulse buying, that is.

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Soap isn’t my cleanser of choice for everyday but I have come across quite a few soaps that I love (including Aide bodycare, From the Blue House with Love, and Sweet Pea Soap Company).  When I saw this, I thought ….sea salt soap? Really? Is this a thing?  After I bought it I thought, oh boy-what did I get myself into? Is it going to dry my skin out?

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So here are some snippets about this soap from the internet…..

Inspired by simple Swedish style, made in America. This fresh-smelling Swedish Dream Sea Salt Soap creates soft suds for bathing or shaving, while embedded salt flakes provide gentle exfoliation. Mineral-rich sea salts are an age-old tonic for softening and moisturizing the skin.

  • Mineral-rich formula.
  • 4.3 ounces.
  • Light, clean scent.
  • Gently exfoliates.
  • See Dimensions + Care for ingredients.
  • Made in the USA

Here’s what’s in this soap:

INGREDIENTS

Sodium palmate, sodium cocoate, sodium palm kernelate, water, glycerin, sea salt, fragrance, titanium dioxide, sodium chloride, polyethylene, pentasodium pentelate, tetrasodium eidronate.

Okay so made in the USA, not Sweden?  Meh? Whaaaa?

I’ll skip all the other fluffy bits and get right to it.  I love this soap!  The embedded salt is great for exfoliation and the scent reminds me of Cape Cod or some quaint little beach town where everyone has a wind chime out front.  I can’t put my finger on the scent and was disappointed to see the ingredients list it as ‘fragrance.’  However, it’s definitely fresh and does remind me of the sea and slightly of salt water taffy (yes, weird).  I use this soap the night before I shave my legs.  The best part about it is that it is absolutely NOT drying.  It doesn’t make my skin tight or itchy either.

So yeah, it’s a bit strange-both the name and the fact that it’s called ‘Swedish soap’ but made in the U.S.A. However, if you are in the market for an exfoliating soap with a pleasant scent I do recommend this. I bought mine at a local shop but you can also buy it here.

 

I’ve also discovered that they make a seaweed version of this soap as well as a sunflower version.  Hmmm, I may have to try this out!

Keepin’ it Blonde with Provoke Touch of Silver!

*I was sent these products for review-my thoughts are my own! Please be wary when reading blogger reviews-it is NOT a requirement to disclose whether one has received a product for review or not in Canada, but it IS good manners and ethics :) *

Having blonde hair is one thing-keeping it in fantastic condition is another thing entirely!  I’ve probably used it all in terms of maintenance-gloss, colour protecting shampoos, conditioners, deep conditioning masques, AND purple shampoos.  And I’m glad that I have all these options available to me, but have to admit that I’m not in *love* with my current purple shampoo and conditioner-mainly because the conditioner does NOT condition well and I am WAAAAYYYYY over the 5 minute detangle.

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To understand how purple shampoo & conditioner like Touch of Silver work, let’s chat about colour theory.  Basically, opposing colours neutralize each other.   In the case of ‘blonde’ hair- it has the tendency to move to yellow/orange due to sun exposure, detergent based shampoos. The opposite of yellow/orange is purple violet.  Touch of Silver deposits violet colour pigment that neutralizes yellow tones in blonde hair.

colorwheelSo….now you have questions.  I’m going to answer them!

Touch of Silver Shampoo & Conditioner is used twice a week!

I have recently bleached my hair-when can I start to use touch of silver?

This is me right now-fresh color & highlights.  You CAN use Touch of Silver but not until at least 2 weeks after your color.  When you use for the first time after a color, leave the product on for 2-3 minutes, not the full 5 minutes.

Will my hair turn purple?

Touch of Silver IS a toning shampoo, so if you leave it on too long, you have the potential to develop a purple tinge to your hair.

When will I see results?

You’ll see results from the very first wash! Two applications is enough to keep the brass at bay!

Is Touch of Silver a Hair Dye?

Yes it is-a temporary one.  It washes out within 6-8 washes.  The violet pigment sits on the surface of the hair, unlike permanent or semi-permanent dyes penetrate the hair shaft.

Now, keep in mind that individual results will definitely vary.  Also, if you are sensitive to dyes, do a patch test first!

My thoughts?

The shampoo is your standard purple shampoo.  I leave it on for about 3 minutes because I’m pretty darn impatient. My Stand-OUT product in this duo is definitely the Intensive Treatment Conditioner.  I LOVE THIS.  It is so rich and so moisturizing and hydrating.  It leaves my hair tangle free and soft.  It’s amazing.

So yes, this is worth it-especially if you’re a blonde or silver or white haired FOXY LADY!  Try it!

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farleycotouchofsilverFind Touch of Silver :

on the web

 

 

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.