Foxy Face Beauty

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Ready, SET, Go!

matte_powder_mediumCover FX Matte Setting Powder is is a not a new product, but it is one that I have added to my regular regime in the past year. In the past, I used the Cover FX Illuminating Setting Powder. With trends changing recently to a more matte finish with precision highlighting, I opted for the matte one when I was replacing it.

I love this powder so much. It is totally sheer and does not disrupt the colour of my foundation. It is easy to choose a shade as it only comes in three colours, and all which are sheer so you can not go too wrong. The powder is so lightweight with an incredibly fine texture, almost like a dust. When applied over my foundation or tinted moisturizer, it instantly transforms my skin so it feels totally natural like I have nothing one – no stickiness or texture, just feels like my skin.

Let’s talk about the brilliant packaging for a moment. One of my pet peeves is with a loose powder is that it gets everywhere, especially when you travel. This one has a cover that twists over the dispenser to shut it, or to allow just a few holes exposed to control how much comes out. I travel all over with this powder and have never had so much as a trickle of a leak!

This powder is a keeper that will be a staple of my makeup bag forever, either in its matte form or illuminating form… or both!

Foxy Friends, tell me how you set your makeup? 


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Liquid Lipstick Phenomena

Scrolling through Instagram in 2015, I saw  Anastasia Beverly Hills liquid lipsticks all over my feed. They look great in the pictures, but it is difficult to tell what they will really be like as so many pictures are photo-shopped or taken when the application is fresh. In my experience long wear lipsticks make my lips look parched and peel off in chunks throughout the day. Also, they tend to have tricky formulas that require a close to perfect application.

pure_hollywood_off_copyMy hubby Fox is a pilot and was in the US for the night, and there ABH lipsticks are not available in Canada. So, of course I send him out on a mission to pick me up 3 shades. He tried so many places that carry this brand only to find out that they are so popular that the stores can’t even keep the testers on the shelf without them getting stolen.

After hours of searching and by some miracle, he found two of the shades I wanted at  Macy’s. The third one I wanted was being held for another customer behind the counter, she was late picking it up and was known to be the LAST ONE IN THE STATE! Hubby Fox did some sweet talking and walked away with all three shades! I got PURE HOLLYWOOD (pictured) which at the time, was going for close to quadruple the price on eBay.

I can honestly say, I have NEVER used anything else like these. First of all, the applicator allows for a  precision application. Next, the colour pay off is outstanding with a rich matte pigment that is true to what you see in the tube. To apply, I just put a little bit onto the bottom lip and then quickly touch the top and bottom together to spread the colour. Then using the applicator, I spread it around and fill in the entire lip with accuracy. In the unlikely event that I need to apply more colour I can and the texture doesn’t go weird like it can with other liquid lipsticks I have used!201511123521690501075778_sbig

It stays on all day and does not look much worse for wear at the end of the day. I love that it is a liquid, and I can take a dollop of several colours and mix them up to customize a tone. I have since sent hubby Fox on a mission for more wintery colours… but no luck! I even had some kind hearted Facebook friends look for them on their adventures to the US and everyone comes up empty handed. The only downside of the amazing product is the lack of availability.

Am I the only one who chases down beauty products in another country? Have you ever hunted something down that was hard to find? Tell me about it!


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So You Wanna Contour?


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Contour is everywhere, and there are so many different beauty products you can use to achieve a sculpted look – matte neutral eyeshadows, bronzers, foundations, concealers, face powders, etc. Having an actual contour product is not necessary, yet I found myself seeking out a specific contour  and highlighting palette (hoarder problems).

The Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit was being featured all over social media and by bloggers and vloggers alike, so in true compulsive fashion I ran out to get my hands on one for myself. It was my lucky day, since there was only one Light to Medium palette left on the shelf.

This kit has three shades for highlighting and three for contouring. I love that there is variety in the highlighting shades, and one of them is matte. The other two have a soft shimmer, but are not over the top. I use the shimmery ones on top of my cheekbones, under the brow, and above the center of my lips. The matte one is a banana shade which is absolutely PERFECT to set my undereye concealer. Read all about my fave concealer here.

As for the three contour shades, I am drawn most to the one in the center, but I use all three of them interchangeably. I can’t really tout the value of one over the other as I find all of them look very similar once blended. I know a lot of people use these as a contour on the eye lids as well, but due to my eye sensitivities I have not even tried this myself.

photo 3To illustrate the power of a contour and highlight, in the side by side photo you can see my face with no makeup at all and then the final result. The single photo shows the contour placement before I blended it in). photo 5I love the contour and highlight palette to give my round face some shape and definition. The powder is very pigmented,  applies easily and blends very well.

It takes time and commitment to blend in a contour application and I have to say I have improved my technique vastly since these photos, but I haven’t had much time to document the improved process.

Lastly, I want to touch on the slimness of this compact. This makes it a perfect travel companion vs. bulky or boxy powders, and it doesn’t take up much real estate at home either. I actually like to store this and other flat compacts on end likes books on a shelf.

Did the contouring trend influence you to try it out for yourself? Or maybe you were already doing it? Let me know!


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Look No Further For The Best Concealer

I was watching this YouTube tutorial by Samantha from Batalash Beauty when I first saw Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in action. I had to back it up and watch again. And again (watch around the 1:43 mark). I was fascinated by the way this concealer looked on screen.

NARSI actually thought to myself, “There is no way this concealer is going to be as good as I think it was on the video. She is like, 22, and has young tight skin, no major issues and blah blah blah….” I was not going to get my hopes up on this pricey little concealer, but I knew I was going to try it out ASAP.

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Well, praise be to that video tutorial… this concealer did not disappoint and has not let me down. I am so impressed with how smooth and creamy it is when it goes on and this creaminess gives you a lot of time to blend it before it sets. The creaminess is also very forgiving around tired eyes and fine lines. Usually, this type of texture can mean a lot of creasing later in the day, but I set it after blending with a touch of banana coloured pressed powder (from Anastasia Beverly Hills which you can read about here) and a fluffy brush, and it looks great and crease free well into the evening. Even when I have skipped the powder, it looks fresh far longer than any concealer I have ever tried.

The coverage is amazing, and the slight peachy tone of the Custard shade corrects any darkness and also brightens under my eyes. Until this magic tube of sleep, I had been pretty loyal to my Bobbi Brown concealer, but I can say unequivocally that after using Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer there will be no turning back.


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My First Chanel Lip…

I was in Montréal for work and if you have never been there, you need to know that women there looks effortlessly styled and polished from head to toe. They really have that natural French fashion flare, and seem to be able to look more put together in a moment than if I decided to take all day to style myself. Feeling the glam of the city, I  was wearing a long lasting red liquid lipstick (which will remain unnamed ). That and the late November weather, my lips were feeling like the Sahara, cracked, and looking terrible in general. I just HAD to have red lips, being in Montreal , so I decided I should seek out a new, more moisturizing one. RougeCoco2015_collection

I chose to entertain buying Chanel because I was in a French city and that is just how my beauty logic works. I am a big supporter of lower priced lipstick, but I was feeling it was time to see what the hype is all about when it comes to luxury cosmetics. Don’t get me wrong, this was not my first luxury purchase, or even my first luxury lipstick… I had become a tad bit frugal in this arena as there are so many fabulous lower end lipsticks, and I had never experienced a luxury lipstick that I felt was worthy of the high price tag.

Approaching the counter at the new Pharmaprix galerieBEAUTÉ in the popular Saint Catherine Ouest 2015 - 1area, the Chanel advisor looked like she was a stand – in for a Chanel makeup photo shoot with her stylish rich brown hair, deep brown eyes and flawless, yet naturally glowing makeup.  I told her about my dry, parched lips and desire for something more forgiving in a stunning red. She steered me towards Rouge Coco Ultra Hydrating Lip Colour  in 444 Gabrielle. She informed me that this is the shade Kiera Knightley is wearing in the ads. SOLD! (I am such an easy mark.)

IMG_2627This lipstick feels AMAZING on my lips, and applies like a dream providing instant hydration. The shade is absolutely gorgeous, and I would encourage ANYONE looking for a red lip to check this one out. It would look stunning on any skin tone, and is such a classic shade. The colour doesn’t appear quite the same on me as it does on Ms. Knightley, but I think it is just perfect.

It was my last day in Montréal when I bought this lipstick and I swear I am not lying when I say FIVE different people complimented me on it at the airport. This is a obviously a winner!

Foxes, what do you think of luxury beauty products? Are they worth the investment? I would love to hear your thoughts on this!

Judgement Day: 2015 Resolutions I Actually Kept….

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Last year at this time I made my 2015 Beauty Resolutions public, as if stating them to the world would cause me to actually follow-through on them. Oh, I had grand plans… never mind that I was returning to work  after a glorious entire year off, and had two toddlers to chase after. I could never have anticipated the sheer exhaustion of being back in the 9 to 5 grind, the commute and combine that with the madness that a three and a one year old can concoct.

Here is a recap of my 2015 Beauty Resolutions and how they actually panned out:

I will wash my makeup brushes more often.

VERDICT: GUILTY

In 2015,  I continued using filthy brushes on a regular basis. I think I probably washed them maybe a half a dozen times through the entire calendar year (I am probably over-estimating here folks). I even blogged about the importance of beauty hygiene… what a hypocrite! The bad news – I am disgusting. The good news- I am the only person using my brushes so my filth stays within my own face’s ecosystem.

 

I will stop picking at my cuticles and hangnails.

VERDICT: NOT GUILTY

I actually Sally-Hansen-Cuticle-Massage-Creammade a concerted effort to pack cuticle cream with me at work and even apply it while I sit in horrendous traffic on the 404 on my way into work. Even remembering to do this once a week once the colder weather hits made a tremendous difference. I haven’t even had a manicure since early fall and I am not ashamed of my cuticles as I type this.

 

I will apply a foot cream. 

VERDICT: GUILTY

All I can say about this failed promise is Heaven for my feetyuck. Without regular TLC from my pedicurist at Yen Nails, my feet still look like a shoeless Hobbit. It is not for lack of product selection in my home. I struggle with finding the right time to apply it. Right out of the shower would be an ideal time, but I am often in a hurry and forget. Bedtime also seems like it would be a good time to put it on, but if I have been wearing stockings or tights to work it can make for a stinky foot (don’t cringe, we all have had this happen), it feels gross to rub cream into a smelly foot. Try again in 2016 I guess….

 

I will say goodbye/ adios, au revoir to anything in my collection that is older than my children.

VERDICT: HUNG JURY.

I still have the eye shadows pictured because I have a weird emotional attachment to them. I have, however, purged a TON of products. Anything that had an altered texture, colour or smell was tossed. Anything that I really struggled to embrace was tossed. Anything that caused my eyes to turn bright red was tossed. What did I keep? Anything that I bought on a vacation that I wouldn’t get in Canada, or items that I now deem artifacts and as soon as the “Museum of Beauty History” is created I will be a main contributor and hailed as a beauty hero. So there- that’s progress!

 

I will find a reason to wear false eyelashes once a month.More of my hoarding

VERDICT: GUILTY

I am actually wearing a set of false lashes right now in anticipation of starting off 2016 right. Last year, I think I rocked some falsies maybe twice… a far cry from the dozen times I was aiming for. However, the one time I wore them I was brilliant with them! I was attending a special event at the Toronto Benefit Cosmetics Boutique which of course called for some extra – girly glamour.  After the event,  I couldn’t wait until I got home to take off my lashes so I peeled them off in a Starbucks parking lot while a horrified bystander in a car across from me witnessed the act. You’re welcome lady!

I was driving the car that usually my husband drives so I hid each lash strip so when he would reach to lower the visor or adjust the vent he would accidentally brush his hand on it. I imagined him mistaking the lash momentarily for a big hairy spider and him screaming aloud in horror. Well, he foiled my brilliant plan not even noticing either of them and this made me so sad. But you have to admit that that lady got a show and the pre-meditative nature of a spider scare count as at least 10 wears. So, in reality I was thisclose to meeting my goal.

I will use my lipliner more often.

VERDICT: NOT GUILTY

Oh this a Beauty Resolution that I totally won! I have grown to adore my lip liners and love creating depth and highlight by using my liners. I have added a half dozen or so new lipliners to my collection (hoarder!) and use one on an almost daily basis. I absolutely love the crisp definition that a liner adds to a red lip, or shading the corners and sketching into the center a little to create an ombre effect. Yes. This was the winning Resolution!

So, that’s my 2015 Beauty Resolution recap. Stay tuned for the 2016 ones coming soon…. In the meantime, Foxes please tell me what item or technique did you add to your regime in 2015? 

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9 Things Your Face Is Begging You To Do, Or to Stop Doing


Have you ever taken a moment to ask yourself what lies beneath your make up brush bristles and on the surface of your beauty products? I assure you that for the most part, it is not a pretty sight. There may be a hidden germ army in your makeup bag! This is an area that is so often overlooked, but the repercussions can be devastating to your face, and your eye area is especially vulnerable.

Your beauty products may look OK, but it is what lies beneath that should have you concerned.Here are are 9 precautions and tips that you can take to keep it as fresh and safe as possible.

1.Sharing stuff means sharing stuff. So, if you are sharing that mascara with a friend, you may also be sharing that pink eye. If you are sharing your lip gloss, maybe you are sharing that cold sore too. When it comes to beauty, it is the time to be greedy. Just say no.

giphy2. Air is your enemy, so seal everything tightly after each use. This goes for face creams, mascara, lipsticks – everything! There is often thought put into package design to make your products less vulnerable to air, so seal them up tightly. The biggest thing you will discover from exposure to air is that your liquid, gel or cream products dry up faster, and all products may get some unwanted bacteria growth.

giphy (1)3. Speaking of air – never pump your mascara!  Each time you remove or put your mascara wand back in the tube you are letting air in that is drying out your formula. I have no idea why after all of these years I still see people doing pumping their mascara in and out of the tube, but now is the time to stop it. Now and forever. Please tell all of your friends.

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4. Where you store your skin care and beauty products really does matter.  Many people keep all of their beauty items in the bathroom, and on one hand this makes sense because that is often where the biggest mirror in the house resides. However, the heat and humidity from your shower and bath can wreak havoc on your products and cause them to spoil or change texture. I won’t even talk about what other things may be floating around in the air landing on your stuff.. The same goes for fragrances which in addition to avoiding the heat and humidity should also be kept out of direct sunlight as this can alter the juice. Ideally, store your stuff somewhere dark and cool, and away from humidity. A linen closet makes a perfect spot.giphy-2

5. Clean those nasty beauty tools! Sponges, brushes and eyelash curlers need to be cleaned often to prevent cross contamination and potentially cause infection (again your eyes are most at risk!). Not sure what to do? Get a brush cleaning spray to clean your brushes in between uses, and give them a bath once a week. Using a mild shampoo, lather the bristles in warm water and rinse until clean. Avoid getting the brush wet past the bristles as water can cause your brush head to loosen or fall apart. As for those sponges, use the same method and be sure to allow them to fully air dry to prevent mould or bacteria build up. Sponges are not meant to last forever though, so toss them after about a month or when you see signs of wear and tear.

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6. If a beauty product has changed in colour, texture or smell since you first opened it – toss it. As products are exposed to air and also to the cross contamination that is transferred between your applicators and your face, they suffer from some wear and tear that should not be ignored for long. Your foundation may separate or smell “off”, your powders may get a shiny glaze over them (usually caused by oil build up), and your mascara may start to appear dry or flake easily. These are all whispers that it’s time for them to go away now!

giphy-57. Speaking of mascara – this relationship should resemble a summer fling, not a life long commitment. Three months since opening is really the maximum amount of time you should keep a mascara, and even less if you are prone to eye infections or if your immune system has been compromised. To extend this relationship any longer is kin to thinking you can get that serial cheater to change. Like a bad boy, mascara can hurt you and bring you to tears. Infections and irritations are something you can easily prevent by tossing and replacing your mascara every 3 months.

giphy-68. Ask yourself some tough questions: When did I last wear that shiny electric blue eyeshadow? Am I realistically going to be wearing that espresso coloured glittery lipstick again? Asking yourself these sorts of questions will help keep your collection reasonably contained and as fresh as possible. Time to say buh-bye!

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9. There is more to consider than expiry dates alone. Skin care is an area that you can not forget about, especially if you are using anything with sun protection in it. You can look for expiry dates, but that alone may not be enough. Most beauty products now have an indicator symbol on the packaging that looks like a jar with the lid open, and a number on it. This number indicates how many months the product is recommended to be used once it has been opened. So, if you used a sunscreen last summer and it does not expire for another year, but the symbol indicates “12” for twelve months after opening, it is best err on the side of caution and start a fresh one.

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So now that you are armed with these tips, it’s time to clean your regime. Then, go forth and shop without guilt because you have to replace it in the name of safety.