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Bite Beauty #TheLipPencil Review + Swatches

Bite The Lip Pencil review and Influenster

By now, you probably feel inundated with Instagrams and reviews of the Bite Beauty lip pencils. Well here's another one, but I think what I have to say may surprise you. These classic, ultra-pigmented, creamy lip pencils are Bite's answer to the often overlooked lip liner. Although I'm not a big lip liner person myself, I do think they're an essential in every lipstick lover's kit, so how do these ones from my beloved Bite stand up?

Lipsticks For Feeling Good: My Lipstick Collection Part 2

plum lipstick collection

In this multi-part series, I'm sharing a peek into my "active" lipstick collection. Right now I have 2 pencil cases (like the kind you use in elementary school to hold pencils and school supplies) full of lipsticks and these make up my go-to daily rotation. This series will feature those products and hopefully will inspire you to try a new lippie yourself!

Last week, I kicked off the first installment of my lipstick collection series, starting with reds, or the lipsticks I wear when I want to feel confident and bold.  This week, I'll be sharing the lipsticks that I wear just for me.

Skyn Iceland Brightening Eye Serum Review | It's time to destress.. starting with your eyes

skyn iceland brightening eye serum review

Stress. It's a standard of everyday modern life and it can drastically affect your mental and physical health, as well as your outward appearance. The founder of skyn ICELAND learned this the hard way, when she was forced to detox her life after stress became too much. To do so, she escaped to Iceland, where she was inspired by its pristine landscapes and laid back lifestyle to create a lifestyle and beauty company focused on encapsulating Iceland's pure natural benefits into a line of skincare products.

I've always wanted to visit Iceland, so why not start with some skincare inspired by it?

Lipsticks For Feeling Bold: My Lipstick Collection Part 1

red lipstick for yellow undertones

If there's one weakness I have regarding makeup, it's eyeshadows and lipsticks! I can never seem to get enough and I tend to go through phases where I'm obsessed with a certain type of shade for months before I get sick of it and move on to the next thing.

In this multi-part series, I'm sharing a peek into my "active" lipstick collection. Right now I have 2 pencil cases (like the kind you use in elementary school to hold pencils and school supplies) full of lipsticks and these make up my go-to daily rotation. This series will feature those products and hopefully will inspire you to try a new lippie yourself!

red lipstick shades
Left to right: Clinique Pop Lip in Peppermint Pop, Bite Amuse Bouche in Beetroot, Sonia Kashuk Velvety Matte Lip Crayon in Raspberry Nude, NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Monte Carlo, Clinique Pop Lip in Ruby Pop, Annabelle Stay Sharp Lip Liner in Glam Red, Sephora Collection lipstick in 04 Red, Annabelle TwistUp in Monroe, Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy in Empowered

First up, are the reds, or as I affectionately call them, the confidence makers. Red isn't for wussies. It's not for no-fuss, minimalist hippies. It's for glamourzons, seductresses, femme fatales and no-nonsense takers. It's that most classic of shades, yet it retains an air of mystery and sauciness. Have you ever met a boring person who wears red? I rest my case!

I always wear reds when I'm either feeling really lazy to do my makeup, or when I want to feel stronger than I am, say for a big work meeting, or a meeting with an ex, or just a party where I want to look good and feel more extroverted than my natural self.

My favourite types of reds range from true reds to deeper, moodier territories. Right now I'm lusting for a true oxblood shade for winter, but in summer I'll even venture to slightly orange-reds to match the season. There's a red for every skin tone, but for mine, I think it favours neutral-to-cool reds more.

red lipstick for when you want to feel powerful
Left to right: Clinique Pop Lip in Peppermint Pop, Bite Amuse Bouche in Beetroot, Sonia Kashuk Velvety Matte Lip Crayon in Raspberry Nude, NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Monte Carlo, Clinique Pop Lip in Ruby Pop, Annabelle Stay Sharp Lip Liner in Glam Red, Sephora Collection lipstick in 04 Red, Annabelle TwistUp in Monroe, Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy in Empowered

Here's the details on the reds featured here:
  • Clinique Pop Lip Matte Lip Colour + Primer in Peppermint Pop - a bold scarlet that's high impact in just one swipe and lasts all day (see how it looks here)
  • Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Beetroot - maybe I say this a lot, but trust me when I say that Bite makes some of my favourite lipsticks! I recently got Beetroot, so I'm still getting used to it, as it's so bold looking, but I really really love it. These are super creamy and never drying. Bite lipsticks are a little pricier at $30 each, but so worth it and they're made from food grade ingredients!
  • Sonia Kashuk Velvety Matte Lip Crayon in Raspberry Nude - this one always makes me sad that Target left Canada because Sonia Kashuk is so good! These lip pencils offer as much pigment and lasting power as a higher end lipstick, but at a much cheaper price. This shade is very wearable despite its brightness, with a soft velvet finish that gives you that flushed lips look
  • NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Monte Carlo - this one is quite similar to Raspberry Nude, but in a cream liquid lipstick finish. I'm such a sucker for a good cranberry red!
  • Clinique Pop Lip Matte Lip Colour + Primer in Ruby Pop - I always get the name of this one mixed up with Peppermint Pop as rubies just imply a darker tone to me for some reason. Ruby Pop is a brighter, more cheerful version of Peppermint Pop, with just the slightest hint of orange
  • Annabelle Stay Sharp Self Sharpening Lipliner in Glam Red (review) - reds can be notoriously tricky to apply and keep intact, so a creamy lip liner should be a staple in your pocket. This liner is not only super red and works great as an all-over color, but it also will literally last you from sun up to sundown AND you can even sharpen it on the go! 
  • Sephora Collection Rouge Cream Lipstick in 04 Red - one of my first red lipsticks. This tried and true red is super bright and the boldest of the bold 
  • Annabelle TwistUp Lipstick Crayon in Monroe - I reviewed these AGES ago and I still haven't used this up! The original TwistUp shades were my favourite of the line. Monroe is what I call a "beginner's red" as it's not too loud, but still packs some decent pigmentation. As a recall, I said this was a "wear it and call it a day" type color as it's really all you need to look put together
  • Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Lipstick in Empowered (review) - another fantastic scarlet from another fabulous lipstick line. I love this lipstick as it has a really pretty glossy finish, leaves my lips feeling moisturized, and packs some great color payoff. Out of all the reds featured here, this one is probably the sheerest, but I actually like that as sometimes you just want a little something and not a lot of something. Plus the packaging here is the best of them all with a sleek navy and gold bullet and the most satisfying clicking magnetic lid. Seriously, you have to play with it in person to get what I mean!

As you can tell, a lot of these are oldies, but goodies in my collection and the fact that I've been wearing these for so long just tells you how versatile and essential they are! I would certainly repurchase any of these anytime.

What is your favourite type of red lipstick?

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Burberry Liquid Lip Velvet Review + Swatches | Burberry does it again!

burberry liquid lip velvet

2016 was the year of the liquid lipstick. You could not get anywhere, especially on Instagram, without seeing that ultra-pigmented, matte liquid lipstick look. While admittedly gorgeous, I just didn't find myself jumping wholeheartedly onto the liquid bandwagon, namely because liquid lipsticks are notoriously tricky to apply, take too long to set and most importantly, leave my lips feeling like Death Valley.

With the debut of the Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets though, was it finally time for me to step into the liquid lipstick camp?

The Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets are ultra-pigmented liquid lipsticks with a unique whipped texture and a matte-cream finish. Designed to offset the worst characteristics of the category, the Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets claim to be non-drying, lightweight and comfortable for all-day wear. The collection is available in 14 stunning shades, ranging from a pale nude mauve to a vibrant fuchsia and  a deep black cherry - and lest we forget, there is of course an oxblood shade!

Burberry was kind enough to send me 2 shades from the line to try and they are just the ones I would have picked myself!

Fawn is described as a nude rosy brown, although straight out of the tube, it looked more like a pink mauve. On me, the color is true to description. Fawn is a beautiful brown rose MLBB that makes my lips look like a refreshed version of their natural color. If you want something more mauve, then Fawn Rose would be your pick, but the warm brown undertones of Fawn suit me perfectly!

burberry liquid lip velvet fawn rose
Burberry Lip Velvet in Fawn

The other shade I received was Brilliant Violet and it's described as a soft purple. On the Burberry site, Brilliant Violet is a gorgeous magenta purple that's a cross between a deep mulberry and phlox. On me, my lips seem to bring out more of the red tones in this color and it appears more like a amaranth than a purple.

burberry liquid lip velvet brilliant violet
Burberry Lip Velvet in Brilliant Violet

Both shades apply with one swipe full color, which is what I'd expect out of any liquid lipstick. The texture is probably the most unique part of the Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets. It truly comes out of the tube like a whipped mousse that applies softly and evenly across the lips. Although you don't need to, I like to swipe back and forth across my lips with the wand to really pack on the color; I found this the best way to make the color last without fading, whereas a single swipe tended to fade slightly over time.

The Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets mousse texture makes this lipstick a lot easier to apply than other liquid lipsticks that lean more gloopy and sticky. The Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets' creamy texture melts into lips and can be blended easily with the Lip Velvet's tapered doe foot wand. I found the tip of the wand especially handy for creating a precise outline on my lips.

As the Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets aren't really wet, I thought they would set quickly and they do set somewhat, in that they don't feel slippery, but I didn't find them to ever truly set like a liquid lipstick should. Basically these transfer as easily as any other lipstick, i.e. onto cups, napkins, skin, everything! The color does however last very well throughout the day and I didn't notice either of mine fading to a dreaded ring over time.

burberry liquid lip velvet swatches
Left to right: Fawn, Brilliant Velvet

Besides the fact that the Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets don't truly set, my other major gripe with these is that they are not moisturizing. My lips right now are drier than they've been for months thanks to the weather and indoor heating and these lipsticks show every single dry patch. Looking at these photos just makes me cringe because I can see every line and wrinkle clearly. Both shades show dryness equally, though I imagine the palest shade in the line could probably show this even worse. Exfoliation and lip balm are definitely needed with these.

At first I was super hesitant to use any balm with the Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets, but unlike many liquid lipsticks, these didn't seem to melt off with lip balm; just be sure to use a beeswax based one and not an oily one to be safe.

Despite these lipsticks not resolving my biggest dislikes with liquid lipsticks, the Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets are still a winner in my eyes. The colors are gorgeous and I love the truly velvet finish it gives. If my lips were more moisturized, then I think the velvet finish would make them look so pillowy and lush and who doesn't want that?

You can purchase these lipsticks from Sephora and Burberry counters for $38 each.

Final Verdict

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A Dinner Party Makeup Look Ft. Clinique Lid Pop in Willow Pop

just j makeup look

Happy Valentine's Day! Today's post is a day late from my usual posting schedule as yesterday was Family Day in BC so I had the day off.

Green eyeshadow isn't something people would normally call a neutral, but I beg to differ! There's green and then there's green. Basically, one cannot write off a whole color just because some aren't one's cup of tea! Unless it's grey and then I am very biased. Anyhoo, if you're not a green makeup lover, then I beg for you to give Clinique's Lid Pop in Willow Pop a try.

Willow Pop is a beautiful olive green color that is super flattering for many skin tones, particularly if you have yellow undertones like me. This is the only Lid Pop shade I own, but if Willow Pop is representative of this line, then I'd say it's awesome. Willow Pop is pigmented, but easily sheered out and has a really soft satin finish that is great if you hate in your face shadows.

clarins iridescente eyeshadow makeup look

To demonstrate its wearability, I created this look featuring Willow Pop and my favourite grey shadow for a dinner banquet this past weekend. I'm such a fan lately of soft, smoky eyes, and this look could be worn for any number of everyday or special occasions.

Here's how to create this look!

  • Clinique Beyond Perfecting Foundation + Concealer in Creamwhip (review)
  • Urban Decay Naked Skin Color Correcting Fluid in Pink (review)
  • Algenist REVEAL Concentrated Color Correcting Drops in Pink (review)
  • Make Up Forever HD Pressed Powder
Every good look requires a solid base and nothing makes my skin look as flawless as my go-to Clinique foundation concealer. I have a couple of blemish scars at the moment, so this was a necessity. Then to brighten things up as I wanted a lit, but not super dewy, glow I applied some pink color correcting under my eyes and to the center of my forehead. Finally I set everything off with some translucent powder.

  • Urban Decay Primer Potion
  • Tarte Tartelette in Bloom palette 
  • Clinique Lid Pop in Willow Pop
  • Clarins Ombre Iridescente Eye Shadow in Silver Grey
  • Stila Extreme Lash Mascara
First prime your lids with your fave primer. I always prime as it just helps my eye colors lay down more pigmented and last longer. Primer also helps to smooth your eye lid surface. Now for color! I like to lay down my transition and base shades first. I wanted something slightly cool but mostly neutral, so I opted to first lay down the shade Flower Child from my Tarte Tartelette in Bloom palette all over my lid; it's a fine yellow-cream shade that perfectly matches my skin. Next, I highlighted with Charmer, a matte bone white, and then went over my lid and crease again with Jetsetter, which is a slightly ashy light brown.

clinique willow pop makeup look

With my transition down, it was time to apply color. Taking a medium stiff shadow brush, I dipped it generously into Willow Pop and then applied that across my lid with patting motions, concentrating the color on my outer lid and keeping it beneath my transition area. 

I could have stopped things there, but I always like a bit of shimmer to draw light to my eyes, so I picked up my Clarins shadow and with a tapered shadow brush (the Sigma E30S is perfect for this) I lined my top lash line with a shimmery grey. Now you might think that a warm tone like olive wouldn't go well with a cool grey, but somehow it does! 

Lastly since I was skipping any further eyeliner, I wanted full lashes, so I applied 2 coats of a voluminizing mascara.

  • KISS Pro Top Brow Fine Precision Brow Pencil (review)
  • Marcelle Perfect Brow Gel (review)
Normally I'm all for defining and filling in my brows, but for today's look I wanted something softer. This combo of pigmented brow gel + brow pencil has been my go-to for weekend soft brow looks. First, I outlined my brows using this super-fine brow pencil, just gently filling in the tail ends of my brows, which are always too short. Then I filled in everything using this awesome Marcelle tinted brow gel; seriously this gel is the best as it's so pigmented and the brush is angled so it's really easy to work with! 

  • Clarins Contour Visage Palette
Again, keeping things light here. I just took a small blush brush and swept my T-zone and cheekbones with the cream toned highlight from this palette and the rose-pink shade across the apples of my cheeks. No contouring today!

  • Bite Lip Pencil in 020
  • Burberry Lip Velvet in Fawn
I'll be reviewing these two items soon, but I'll just gush now about how much I love the combo of these two. They both look really pink-mauve in person, but I suppose my lip color brings out the rosiness in them way more. This is the perfect type of lip color for pairing with a green as it just gives a very fresh-faced, romantic finish.

gray and green makeup look

What did you think of this look? I hope I've convinced you to give greens, or at least olive greens, a try! 

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A Jem Doll Inspired Makeup Look Ft. Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Bendable Liquid Eyeliner and Extreme Wide-Angle Mascara

lancome grandiose bendable eyeliner makeup looks

Happy Friday everyone! I'm celebrating the long weekend here in BC by bringing to you today a fun makeup look inspired by the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Bendable Liquid Eyeliner and Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Extreme Wide-Angle Extreme Volume Mascara. 

I am so excited to review these two Lancôme GRANDIÔSE items for you. I've always been a huge fan of the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE mascara and this new version, which came out last fall, is designed to give you even more volume than the original. Also new, is the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Bendable Liquid Eyeliner, which comes in 3 long lasting shades (blue, black and brown).

lancome grandiose bendable eyeliner
Left to right:  Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Bendable Liquid Eyeliner, Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Extreme Wide-Angle Mascara

So what's so cool about the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE line? Well, that unique bend to the wands! Both the mascara and the eyeliner have the ability to bend their applicator wands to a maximum 35 degree angle, which makes these so much more ergonomic and easy to apply. The mascara especially is a game changer as you now only need to use a single angle to apply mascara to your lashes - no more awkward arm twisting to get your left eye!

I absolutely adore the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE mascara formula. It's is wetter than others, but it's not heavy, so it doesn't weigh down my lashes and it gives them a true falsie-like volume and length.

The Lancôme GRANDIÔSE liquid eyeliner was new to me and the ability to bend the wand was, I felt, a bit gimmicky. Did it make application way easier? Maybe. I could see this helping with beginners, but it wasn't so significant an effect as I found with the mascara.

lancome grandiose swatches
Left to right:  Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Bendable Liquid Eyeliner, Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Extreme Wide-Angle Mascara

lancome grandiose mascara review

I received both these products in a stunning blue sapphire shade. The Lancôme GRANDIÔSE mascara was actually tinted enough to be subtly visible if you looked at my face on an angle, but not so colorful as it wasn't appropriate to wear out to work. The Lancôme GRANDIÔSE eyeliner is a beautiful peacock blue with a shimmery, almost metallic finish.

With such bold, fun colors, I was inspired to create a look to match! As a kid growing up, the TV show Jem and the Holograms was a bit before my time, but what I do vividly remember is playing with my sister's Jem dolls, particularly Aja. With her Asian-American ancestry, Aja was the first toy I'd played with that actually looked like me - if you ignore the blue hair and neon makeup - and she was definitely my favourite. I think I've always had a thing for rainbow hair and makeup ever since because of her and so this look is a little homage to that time.

makeup look with lancome grandiose mascara

Here's how to create this look!

  • THEFACESHOP CC Intense Cushion Foundation in Pure Beige (review)
To start things off, I wanted a very luminous, dewy look, so this cc cushion from THEFACESHOP fit the bill. I applied it all over. Setting and finishing powder is optional.

Jem doll inspired makeup look

  • Morphe 35F palette
  • Teeez Cosmetics Spectrum of Stars eyeshadow in Magical Fuchsia (review
  • MAC Pro Longwear Waterproof Colour Stick in Madly Sunny
  • Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Bendable Liquid Eyeliner in blue
  • Lancôme GRANDIÔSE Extreme Wide-Angle Extreme Volume Mascara in blue
The eyes are the centerpiece of this look! First I applied a shimmery white-gold base from my Morphe 35F palette (LOVE THIS!!), then laid down a layer of a shimmery magenta pink all over my lids to just above my crease. Next, I took a warm medium-purple shade from Teeez and applied that generously on the outer third of my lid and into the crease. Then, I mixed it up a LOT by applying a thick layer of this crazy citrine MAC color. The only problem I had with this (and the problem was not with these mad color combos) was the mix of textures. The MAC Colour Stick is creamy and thick, while everything else is a soft powder; thus, it was difficult to blend things out properly, as you can see in my photos. I'm not sure how to alleviate that next time; perhaps I should reverse the order of application?

lancome grandiose mascara makeup looks

Anyways, once I was satisfied with my lid colors (I also applied the citrine to my under eye), I then gave myself an extended cat-eye with the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE liner and finished off with a couple coats of the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE mascara.

Bold eyes means bold brows, so I filled in my brows quite darkly. Sorry, but I forget what it was that I used! 

Nothing! I took these photos during a super fun epic girls day with Sheila and Angela and so I had schlep everything over for my blogging to Sheila's and forgot anything for my cheeks. I highly recommend some crazy shimmery, could-cut-glass highlight for this though if you were to recreate this. 

  • Revlon Ultra HD lipstick in Orchid
Lastly, a fun look deserves a fun lippie and nothing's so fun as matchy matching. A few generous swipes of this purple magenta lipstick and this look is done!

lancome grandiose bendable eyeliner makeup looks

This makeup look is way out of my comfort zone, but I really had a lot of fun putting it together! With my hooded lids, it didn't even look that crazy in the photos. I love how the Lancôme GRANDIÔSE eyeliner gives such a metallic blue pop, even among all the other colors I've got going on. If you're interested in checking these out, I highly recommend heading to your nearest Sephora!

Life lately: This long weekend is also Valentine's Day weekend! As per usual, Mr. Artist and I eschew the mushiness and instead gorge upon yummy food and revenge movies. Even after 8 years together, I can still surprise Mr. Artist, as I did when he asked me what revenge movie I wanted to watch this year and my reply was a big grin and in my best little girl voice, "one with lots of violence!" Single or no, what will you be doing for Valentine's Day?

*This post contains PR samples

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