Monday, January 18, 2016

January Ipsy GlamBag + recent affordable beauty hits

I'm happier than ever with my latest Ipsy GlamBag, this month's a perfect sampler of products I want (or need) right now. I'll start with the Beau Gâchis Paris Smudge Brush, a small, tapered precision defining brush, ideal to intensify and buff out the eye crease. It's stiff enough to smudge out the lower lash line but beautifully soft and smooth so it can be used for detailed contouring anywhere on the face without streaking. I love this brush.
From The Balm Cosmetics is the newly-released Mr. Write Now in Jac B. Bronze, a deep, antique bronze colour that to my delight showed up much darker than expected. It's shiny and metallic without being glittery, and the formula glides smoothly on my eyelids without tugging the skin. This pencil didn't crease or smudge at all, nor did it irritate my eyes, so here's another hit product from The Balm.
I wanted a pop of bright, unusual colour for my lids, and I got it, in J.Cat's Blinkle Shimmer Eyeshadow in Tangering Light. Ultra-shimmery but smooth without chunky glitter particles, this shadow deposits a surprisingly saturated payoff, this is no sheer wash of colour. What a beautiful and unique addition to my eyeshadows, from a brand I don't normally access.
Might as well finish with eye products, and I was elated to find a deluxe sample from skincare phenom Pur~Lisse, the Blue Lotus 4-in-1 Eye Adore Serum. Everything about it sounds good, so I'm hoping to have positive results after consistent use. This brand is a current darling of the beauty world, now my very dry skin will put it to the test.
Last in my January GlamBag was a sample size of Hanalei's Sugar Lip Scrub, a lip exfoliating scrub that's rich and hydrating, with a texture that I prefer to more crumbly types that fall all over the place. The difference is that cheaper lip scrubs are mainly sugar and oil, so they don't stick to lips as like this does. With a quick scrub and a wipe, your lips are ready to take on the mattest lipcolour without flaky patches or feeling dried out. I highly recommend seeking out a good lip scrub this winter, you'll see an immediate difference.

I am so excited to tell you about this Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Gel Foundation, in the shade 56 Hâlé Clair which I am thrilled to say is an ideal match for my current skintone (not something I get to say very often!). I struggle to find makeup suited to my Asian dark tan/olive skintone, plus my colouring varies widely from summer to winter. I researched online for what I thought would be my perfect shade, but only by going into the store and swatching did I realize I was wrong. Many reviews also state that this is only a medium-coverage foundation but I find it is quite opaque with only a single layer applied, and a single pump's worth is usually all I need for my whole face. This product has a thicker consistency than liquid foundations but is so light that I forget I'm wearing anything on my face. It blends quickly with minimal effort and has a delicious but light fruity scent that does not linger. It's neither matte nor glowy, but what impressed me the most is how it smoothed over my dry areas without making them more prominent, a frequent issue with complexion products and dry skin. I'm uncertain about the claims that this product also treats and heals skin, but I am happy to say that this makeup did not transfer to my clothing while I wore it, so it really is long-wearing as advertised. I picked it up at Shoppers Drug Mart for $28CAD and it rivals similar high-end products at twice the price.


One of the things I love about winter makeup is for a short time I'm able to use products that are easy-to-get instead of searching out specialty shades for persons of colour as I do in the summertime. No longer on the makeup short bus, I ferreted out Maybelline's touted Fit Me Concealer in the shade 25 Medium, what many consider a dupe for Nars' Creamy Radiant Concealer which is thrice the price. This concealer is amazing. It seems to melt into my skin but doesn't disappear, and most importantly, it doesn't emphasize dryness or wrinkles around my eyes. Once dusted with a setting powder, this product resists smearing and didn't cake up after several hours of wear. I'm also a fan of the doe-foot applicator, it's so much easier to deal with than tubes or pots that require a bit more effort.



This is turning out to be a post full of all-star bargain beauty gems, for here we have Milani's Eyeshadow Primer in 01 Nude. This little tube of goodness is one of the best eyeshadow primers you can get. I did a double-take when I spotted a lone package on my last trip to a Real Canadian Superstore for only $8.99CAD. This is really the only shadow primer you need, again at half the cost of luxury versions which don't always work nearly as well as this one by Milani. Don't pass on this solid performer the next time you see it.

Also from Milani, I grabbed a Color Statement Lipliner in the shade 09 Spice, a subtle and warm terracotta brown liner that emphasizes my natural lip colour and makes my lipstick application last longer and stay in place. This creamy pencil lipliner is so versatile that I use it with almost every lip product I've been enjoying for day to day wear.
Makeup fiends in my area must know how good these lip pencils are since they're usually sold out but for a few shades I don't want. For $5.99CAD each, who could resist stocking up on this beauty essential?




Finally, I bought two Joe Fresh lipliners, intrigued since I heard they're quite good. I picked two nudes, one cool, one warm, and gave away the cool one since it was much too light for me. The darker shade however, is a faint and subtle version of my own liptone, so it's a perfect nude lipliner for the lightest lipcolours that I wear, defining the boundaries of my lips without making me look weird. As I get older, I want to make sure that my lipcolours don't bleed or look messy. Amazingly, they're nearly indelible and last through eating and sipping hot tea, unbelievable for the $4.99CAD I paid for them. These Joe Fresh LipLiners feature a convenient lip brush on the opposite end to neatly apply potted lipgloss or to perfect your lipstick application. I noticed that Shoppers Drug Mart began to carry the Joe Fresh beauty line in the new year, so they will be more accessible than ever.