A Lovely Allure

Amie Skincare Review

Friday, September 12, 2014

amie skincare moisturizer daily wash and mask review

Amie Skincare is a natural British skincare brand that has recently stepped foot into Canada, available exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart locations.  I was kindly sent four products of theirs to incorporate into my skincare routine and provide a few thoughts on the line.

Amie Skincare was founded by Fiona Parkhouse (not by an Amie or Amy, despite what you may have assumed!) to provide us all with skincare products containing natural plant and botanical extracts, ideal for all skin types for especially for sensitive skin. The entire line is said to be completely free from parabens, sulphates, mineral oils, or animal extracts. Amie is actually french for 'friend', for those of you, like me, who barely passed french class.

First impressions of the line was obviously that the packaging is too cute. If I were to spot this in a store, I would definitely pick it up and examine. Definitely the pastel colours, and matte finish tubes that do it for me.. it is all just very girly! I would assume it would attract more of a younger crowd, but the line is suitable for women of all ages. I understand that natural products don't always mean 'breakout free', but I am happy to report that none of the products I tried here broke me out or negatively affected my skin, yay.

amie skincare radiant dawn exfoliating daily wash review

Radiant Dawn Exfoliating Daily Wash:
This daily wash claims to deep cleanse pores and exfoliate for clear and radiant skin. It is 'pH balanced and has a gentle foam with natural blueberry seeds to help unblock pores, lift away dead skin cells, dirt and oil, and green apple & lemon extracts to refine and tone skin keeping oiliness at bay.' 
The cleanser has a light, earthy scent, and the exfoliating beads are light and minimal. I had no idea they were natural blueberry seeds and thought that was pretty cool. My skin was left feeling clean but not stripped or dry. Due to the exfoliating properties, I prefer to use this a few times a week rather than every day, or if it is to be used everyday I would only use it during the mornings. It was gentle and pleasant to use but not strong enough to remove much makeup or residue after a long day.

amie skincare morning light hydrating daily moisturizer review

Morning Light Hydrating Daily Moisturizer:
The hydrating daily moisturizer is 'rich in rose extract, rose hip oil, and mallow to help keep the skin soft and hydrated.' 
I know it says daily moisturizer, but I prefer to use this at night, at least for now during this September weather. I need something very light during the daytime that will dry quickly, and I found this took a bit longer than the matte-finish moisturizer (below). It would likely be great during the winter-time for daily use. I found that a little bit went a long way and it was easy to apply and spread throughout my face.

amie skincare morning dew matte finish moisturizer review

Morning Dew Matte-Finish Moisturizer:
This light moisturizer 'contains natural plant sugars to hydrate the skin while rosehip and bilberry nourish and soften. Excess oil and shine are controlled.'  
I love a good moisturizer that claims to control oil and shine. I have issues with that in my t-zone and I also hate daily moisturizers that take excessively long to dry. This moisturizer absorbed quickly into my skin in just a matter of a few minutes. Much quicker than the hydrating daily moisturizer so I prefer to use this during the daytime. It made for a good canvas for applying makeup afterwards, but I would suggest a light primer over top of this as well. It is light and feels cooling on the skin with a bit of an earthy scent. I'm not sure how well this would hydrate during the cold winter months but it has been great for the past few warm weeks.

amie skincare spring clean deep cleansing mask review

Spring Clean Deep Cleansing Mask:  
The deep cleansing mask works 'pore-deep to draw out dirt and impurities, soak up excess oil, and prevent blemishes. Peppermint and lime extracts, purifies, and cools.'
I was a little afraid when applying this at first because it felt very tingly like it was burning my skin. The mask was a bit too strong for my sensitive eyes so they watered a bit, and it had quite a strong scent. I left it on for 15 minutes (instructions say 10). It didn't dry very hard or tight like most of my clay masks do. The mask is a bit thick so I'd suggest applying a thinner layer so you will have an easier time washing it off. I applied a bit too thick of a layer and it took longer than expected when rinsing. After washing it off I realized it did not burn or cause any redness to my skin which is good. I kind of like when I can feel a mask on my skin, it makes me think it's doing its job and working at those pores. My skin felt smooth and cleansed afterwards but I didn't see any noticeable difference otherwise. I will likely have to do a bit more testing to come to a more detailed conclusion!

Swatches Top to Bottom: Exfoliating Daily Wash, Deep Cleansing Mask, Hydrating Daily Moisturizer, Matte-Finish Moisturizer

There are also a few more products in the line that might be of interest, such as Amie's cleansing wipes and toner. I find the sizing of the products to be very decent and suitable for drugstore. I would definitely recommend Amie Skincare to those who want natural skincare that isn't harsh on the skin, affordable and readily available. Out of the products I tried, my favourite is probably the matte-finish moisturizer, and I would be most likely to repurchase this one in the future! Amie Skincare is available at Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada. You can read more about the brand Amie, why it was created, and where to buy online and internationally here

These products were received for consideration. All opinions stated are my own and are not influenced by any affiliates.

eos Visibly Soft Lip Balm Review

Monday, September 01, 2014

eos visibly soft lip balm review vanilla mint and coconut milk

eos has recently introduced a new line of lip balms called Visibly Soft. There are 2 lip balms that have launched to start off this collection; Vanilla Mint and Coconut Milk. I'm not sure if they will come out with more, but I'd definitely be interested in seeing the new flavours they come up with. The balms are in their usual fun sphere shape, but with a slightly different design. The casing has swirls designed to mimic the 'buttery richness' of the Visibly Soft formula. It is nice to see eos bring out some new designs to compliment their new Visibly Soft line, and in my opinion, a bit overdue!

eos visibly soft lip balm review

So what is different about the new Visibly Soft balms? The new formula of the Visibly Soft balms contain hyaluronic acid (which can be seen in a lot of new skincare products), and it is said to increase moisture, hydration, and softness in the lips. The formula is also enriched with Vitamin C, said to stimulate the lip's rate of natural exfoliation and improve collagen production. The balms are 99% natural, petrolatum-free, paraben-free, and gluten-free. All eos balms also contain natural conditioning oils, shea butter, and Vitamin E.

eos visibly soft lip balm review vanilla mint and coconut milk

Coconut Milk didn't smell at all to me like coconuts, but it still has a light and pleasing scent. Vanilla Mint didn't have the 'minty' flavour I was expecting, but it does feel slightly cool on the lips. It kind of reminds me of white chocolate and is similar to Nivea's Lip Butter in Vanilla & Macadamia Kiss. Actually, both of these scents smell a bit artificial to me but are still light and sweet. Sorry that I am terrible at describing scents.. Anyways, I'd prefer the Vanilla Mint if I had to choose one. 

The Visibly Soft balms glide on the lips a bit easier, and the formula seems more delicate. I actually dropped the Vanilla Mint while it was open and put a pretty large dent in it. They are completely non-sticky on the lips. I also noticed that the colour of the Vanilla Mint was slightly darker than the Coconut Milk. I found them to be a bit moisturizing and longer lasting than the original balms, likely due to the hyaluronic acid. The one thing I don't like about eos balms is that they are not compact and difficult to fit into small pockets of the purse. But I guess an upside to their larger size is that they're easier to find. They are also fun to play with!

eos visibly soft lip balm review

I would definitely choose these balms over the regular balms if I had to, just because they are softer, feel more hydrating, and glide on the lips much easier. The packaging is also fun and nice to see something different from the original balms. I'd love to see more variety of scents from the Visibly Soft line in the future. 

The balms have launched August 2014 and should be available at your local drugstore or superstore already for $3.99. If you can't find them in store, you might have some luck online, you can view online retailers here and even purchase at evolutionofsmooth.com directly.

These products were received for consideration. All opinions stated are my own and are not influenced by any affiliates.

Olay Eye Brightening CC Cream Review

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

olay eye brightening cc cream review

Olay Eye Brightening CC Cream promises skin perfecting coverage that will also help to fight the 7 signs of aging around the eyes; dullness, fine lines, dark circles, puffiness, uneven tone, provides gentle exfoliation, and a moisture barrier. It contains ingredients such as aloe vera, vitamin B3, B5, and E, as well as green tea. 

olay eye brightening cc cream review

The cream is very light and has shimmer throughout which is used to brighten up the eye area. It glides onto the skin and dries completely within a few minutes but will still have a shine to it. On the shelf it may come across as a potential concealer but there is absolutely no colour or concealing once rubbed into the skin, and you will definitely need to use a concealer on top of this.

Total Effects 7-in-1 promises: 
1. Dullness; brightens the eye area
2. Fine Lines; reduces the appearance of eye wrinkles
3. Dark Circles; reduces appearance of dark circles
4. Puffiness; massage to reduce the look of puffiness
5. Uneven Tone; balances and helps even out skin tone
6. Gentle Exfoliation; improves surface skin turnover
7. Moisture Barrier; strengthens skin's natural defences against moisture loss

I have enjoyed using this as a primer and found that it works great as a base for my under eye concealer. It did not sting my eyes, and has the texture of a light eye cream. To get down to business, I didn't notice it correcting any skin tone, nor did I see a reduction in dark circles. It did slightly help with puffiness, especially on the day I was bawling my eyes out the night before (boy problems). #6 promises gentle exfoliation, however I wish more of an explanation were provided to explain how this works! The shimmer in the cream worked well to brighten up the eye area. I wouldn't use this at night, just because I am looking for something a bit healthier for your skin while I get my beauty sleep, and I associate anything CC cream with something that should only be for daytime use. 

olay eye brightening cc cream review

Ingredients:
Water/Eau, Glycerin, Petrolatum, Isopropyl Isostearate, Isohexadecane, Niacinamide**, Ppg-15 Stearyl Ether, Stearyl Alcohol, Dimenthicone, Cetyl Alcohol, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract++, Tocopheryl Acetate^, Panthenol***, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit, Allatoin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract*, Titanium Dioxide, Mica, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Behenyl Alcohol, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Benzyl Alcohol, Stearic Acid, Peg-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Cetearyl Alcohol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Ethylparaben, Disodium Edta, Silica, Dimethiconol, Iron Oxides, Zinc Oxide, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Laureth-7, Citric Acid, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Isopropyl Titanium Triisostearate, Oleth-3 Phosphate, Triethoxycaprylylsilane. *Aloe Vera/Aloès, **Vitamin/Vitamine B3, *** Pro-Vitamin/Provitamine B5, ^Vitamin/Vitamine E, ++Green Tea/Thé Vert

Overall, the Olay Eye Brightening CC Cream was enjoyable for me to use, helped slightly with puffiness, and illuminating the under eye. It did not show any noticeable evening of the skin tone, fine line improvement, or exfoliation. It seems to be a bit of a dupe to Estee Lauder's Cooling Eye Illuminator, minus the cooling tip. The packaging is cute but the fact that it is in a tub is a bit of a bummer for sanitary reasons. I think I would purchase it again, because I enjoy the consistency, it's actually addicting for me to use, I don't know why.. oh and it works well under my Smashbox BB Eyes concealer. 

The eye brightening cream comes in a 13ml little jar and is available for $24.99 on Amazon.ca, with a retail price of $22.99, however I think I've seen it for around $21 at Walmart's in Canada.

Disclosure: I am a #BeautyUnited blogger. As part of my affiliation with this group I receive products and special access to P&G events, but the opinions on my blog are always 100% my own.

So...? Fragrance So Sexy Review

Friday, August 22, 2014

so fragrance so sexy review

So...? Fragrance (also known as So...? With Attitude) has been focused on fragrances for girls and younger women since the 90's. They are easily available at your local drugstore and very reasonably priced. They are a UK brand however, they are available in Canada and I've spotted them at select Walmart's and Shoppers Drug Mart's. Now, I'm not sure if any of you had the same experiences I had when I was younger, but me and my friends used to love and be obsessed with the So...? line back in grade school. I remember seeing one girl with the So...? Sinful and I went out to buy it right away, but of course, as with everything, I've moved on to trying different perfumes since then. So when I was contacted by this company to test out one of their scents, I was curious to see how well it would bring back old memories!

So Fragrance, So Sexy scent description (from website):
Top Notes: Mandarin, Blackcurrant
Heart Notes: Rose, Jasmine
Base Notes: Sandalwood, Musk

so fragrance so sexy eau de toilette perfume review

The So...? Sexy Eau De Toilette is 30ml or 1 fl.oz and small enough to carry in a regular or large sized purse if you wanted to. It was hard to choose a scent through the computer but I chose the So Sexy because of the base note musk. I love my Rihanna Rebelle perfume which is a musky scent and a bit different, so I decided to try something that would hopefully be similar. This is comparable, but much sweeter and less spicy. It is bearable for me to wear all day, doesn't get annoying, and I find it very subtle. It has more of a mature scent, so if you are looking for something fruity, this scent isn't it, but it does smell sexy to me and I much prefer it because it makes me feel mature.

so fragrance so sexy body mist review

The So...? Sexy Body Fragrance contains 75ml or 2.5 fl.oz. I like that the body spray is a bit easier to travel with because it is lighter and not in a glass container. I don't really use body sprays for the body.. I typically spray them over my clothes. The scent doesn't seem to be any different from the perfume and I guess it is just a better alternative for on-the-go, or for when you would like a much lighter scent. 

I'm glad I gave a product from the So...? Fragrance line a go because I haven't had am impression of their products since grade school. I do think that many of their scents are directed towards younger girls and teens, however, this is a different scent that might attract a bit of an older crowd, or someone who is looking for a mature scent.

So...? Fragrance Eau De Toilette is available in a 30ml size for $9.99. The Body Fragrance is available in 75ml for $4.99. They can be found at select Walmarts and Shoppers Drug Marts in Canada, Brunet and Uniprix in Quebec.

These products were received for consideration. All opinions stated are my own and are not influenced by any affiliates.
PS. Sorry for the lack of posts for August. Busy with end of the semester, and other regular life problems for the typical girl. >.< I hope to begin posting more often, and getting caught up on reviews!

Skin Envy Hair Removal Strips & Soothing Cream Review

Monday, August 11, 2014

skin envy wax strips and soothing cream review

I've been a little MIA lately because guess what.. I'm finally graduating college! Well.. I hope.. I mean.. the reason I haven't been able to post is because I am finishing up 3 final classes, and passing/failing these classes will determine whether I am able to move onto university for September as a direct entry student! (Not exciting..just stressful.. don't know why I added the exclamation mark). 

I have a quick review on two skincare products that go hand in hand, by a company called Skin Envy (By ProFactor). Their products are centered around the removal of body hair and aftercare. Most of the women I know use shaving as their main method of hair removal, but I typically wax or epilate. I do this in hopes of the hairs growing back slower, less thicker... and hopefully one day they won't grow back at all! I think waxing is a great method of hair removal, as long as it is done right, as the proper aftercare is done.

skin envy sugar beeswax strips review

Skin Envy's Sugar & Beeswax Strips for Face & Bikini come in a package of 16 strips (well there are 8, double sided = 16..). For the price of $7.99, I find this to be quite expensive (2 strips = $1), but I do see that face and bikini wax strips are often priced highly (why is that? they are so small). I use small strips like these for areas such as the moustache, fingers, around belly button. I tried warming them up in between my hands, but realized they didn't need much warming, they were basically ready to go! The strips were very sticky and I found them to be decently effective, although I do think I've used more effective strips. I could cut 1/3 of a strip, and use both sides for all of my fingers (knuckle area). I was able to get almost all the hairs, but wish I had been able to get them all the first shot! I was pretty impressed at how sticky they had stayed after using the same strip a few more times. The box also comes with 3 finishing wipes, but I usually just stockpile these and only use them if I'm waxing a large area.

skin envy soothing cream review aftercare

The Skin Envy Soothing Cream is a cream with 2% lidocaine hydrochloride (a topical anesthetic) that is meant for use after the waxing process to soothe the skin. It is said to "provide temporary relief of pain & itching associated with minor burns, cuts & skin irritation". I don't find this a necessary step unless the pain really bothers you. It does provide me with instant relief of any stinging I was experiencing, but I wish this provided other skincare benefits. It does have quince seed extract & vitamin E to moisturize the skin. I have also used it on an area where I have major itchiness, and it worked to relieve the itch similar to my hydrocortisone cream. However, I'd only recommend this if you are very sensitive to pain or experience itching and want fast relief.. but I do feel like there are many more cheaper products that will do the trick such as aloe vera.

Both products are fragrance and paraben free. The Sugar & Beeswax Strips for Face & Bikini are available for $7.99 (16 strips), and the Soothing Cream is priced at $8.99. They are both available online for purchase at FarleyCo or are also available at Lawton Drugs & Walmart stores.

This product was received for consideration. All opinions stated are my own and are not influenced by any affiliates.

EcoTools Skin Perfecting Brush Review

Monday, July 28, 2014

ecotools skin perfecting brush for bb creams review
ecotools skin perfecting brush for bb creams review

EcoTools Skin Perfecting Brush, also known as the 'bb cream brush' is a soft brush crafted from recycled aluminum ferrule, just as other EcoTools brushes are. This is a new brush that has also been recently introduced to me. At first I couldn't help but think... what!? A brush specifically for the use of BB creams? How am I ever going to use this? But I ended up testing it out with my Almay SmartShade Skintone Matching Makeup, which I consider a bb cream because it is so light, and I was pleased with the outcome. 

The brush is very dense, and the angle is said to help precise application especially around the nose and under the eyes. It is much cleaner (and sanitary) than using your fingers, and in return, probably less time consuming considering you won't have to clean your fingers off right after. It doesn't soak up too much product in comparison to a sponge applicator. The brush is soft but a little prickly if you are stippling. I use light strokes so I don't have to feel any bristles prickling me. Also keep in mind it isn't ONLY for use with bb creams, feel free to experiment and try it out with all types of foundation and other face products. 

ecotools skin perfecting brush for bb creams review

Overall I enjoy using this brush and will continue to use it. I support EcoTools because they are another brand that is committed to making brushes that are soft, at reasonable prices. I wouldn't necessarily pick up this brush at the store myself because I have similar brushes already, but I definitely would if it was a bit softer. EcoTools Skin Perfecting Brush is sold for about $9.99 on FarleyCo but EcoTools is also available at Pharmasave, and other select drugstores in Canada.

This product was received for consideration. All opinions stated are my own and are not influenced by any affiliates.