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Beauty Favourites of 2016

beauty favourites of 2016

I hope everyone had a lovely holiday, I had quite a relaxing one, and I'm so excited for what 2017 will bring. My life went through so many changes in the past year, from moving to new relationships,  new friendships, and finding out a lot about myself and others. I mean, every year I find more and more out about myself but this year had pretty big changes for me. 

I didn't blog as often as I wanted to, my summer was spent hanging out outside, and keeping busy with new friends, I was barely indoors (and didn't even get much of a tan...). To be honest, as cheesy as it sounds I spent a lot of time doing car things with my car friends (because yes, I like cars too!). I do want to keep A Lovely Allure alive, and continue sharing my completely honest reviews on products I've tried! 

I am by no means popping out an article a day, but I am trying for (at least) once a week. I am also trying to keep them as short and sweet as possible, because face it, no one wants to read unnecessarily long reviews anymore (I do sometimes get carried away though... sorry!)

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2016 Beauty Favourites

And I know it's a bit of a late post, (I planned to have this up before 2017!) but I didn't want to miss out on sharing my favourite beauty products of 2016.

Clarisonic Mia 2:
I have had the Mia 2 for a while, but I've never expressed how much I really like it! It is the best way to exfoliate dead or flaky skin, because it actually works and you don't have to sit there scrubbing for minutes. There are various brush heads for those with different skin types, and I can exfoliate the dry spots on my face so quickly!

Sephora The Perfectionist Airbrush Sponge:
What a perfect dupe for the Beauty Blender! My all-time favourite sponge, has just met it's competition with this dupe from Sephora. The sponge expands to the same size as my Beauty Blender, and works just as well.

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon in Cava:
I have been using this lip crayon in the shade Cava (worn here) on a daily basis and am afraid it's going to run out soon! The Bite lip crayons are not long lasting if you're about to eat but they last a great amount of time if you don't! They feel so soft and don't dry out my lips. Cava is the perfect mauve shade that I long for in a lipstick! (If you know me, light mauves are my thinggg).

Nyx Micro Brow Pencil:
I finally found a dupe for the highly coveted, Anastasia Brow Wiz! I use this Nyx Micro Brow Pencil before my Anastasia Dipbrow to outline the shape. It is pretty foolproof because it can be wiped off if a mistake is made. I do go over it and fill in my brows with the Dipbrow because this Nyx pencil does not last nearly as long, but it works so well for outlining!

Ole Henriksen Sheer Transformation Oil-Free Perfecting Creme:
I discovered Ole Henriksen in 2016, and I actually had the pleasure of meeting the founder himself! His products are great and so easy to find something to combat specific skin issues. The Sheer Transformation Cream is my favourite, I've been using it daily! It goes under makeup so well, doesn't feel heavy on the skin but moisturizes well. I don't use it when it's super cold outside but mild to hot weather it is perfect.

Formula X MakeupByRose Nail Polish:
I don't know which one I have pictured here, but I fell in love with Formula X's Limited Edition MakeupByRose Collection! Specifically the Mahhvelous Rose (a rosy mauve), and Puffin! (a rich mink grey). I could literally wear these shades on my nails for the rest of the year.

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Concealer:
I wasn't sure this was enough coverage for me at first, but it is so hydrating and so easy to apply that it doesn't really matter to me anymore. The coverage is highest when using a sponge applicator, it doesn't crease too much (and I have dry under eyes). I just finished my tube and I will definitely purchase a new one.

Bliss The Youth As We Know It Eye Cream:
I got this eye cream for half price, and I know it isn't a miracle worker but for the price it is great! I try to do as much as I can to protect my eye area. Only time will tell, but hopefully this will help hold off my aging/dark circles/bags for a little longer!

Body Shop Pinita Colada Body Butter:
This scent, I believe, was introduced in 2016 when the Body Shop's Body Butter packaging was revamped to use plastic made from pollution. The body butter smells delicious, of coconut and a pineapple mix, and is light and absorbs so quickly!

Paula's Choice Hydralight Shine-Free Daily Mineral Complex SPF 30:
I had the opportunity to work with Paula's Choice in 2016 and absolutely loved their skincare products! I soooooo wish they were readily available here in Canada. Although I did love all of the products I got to try, the Hydralight Moisturizer quickly ended up in my morning routine. It is light, smells a bit like crayons but doesn't bother me, but the main perk is that it contains SPF30 and is great to wear under my foundation.

Live Clean Multi Boost Shampoo/Conditioner:
Live Clean's shampoos are really all I use now! They are sulfate free, but also free of many chemicals, parabens, silicones, never tested on animals, and 98% plant derived. The main reason I've stuck to this brand is because it is sulfate free, my hair has felt so much healthier and my scalp isn't as itchy since switching to this brand!

What were your favourites of 2016? Feel free to share with me in the comments!

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Set {+ Swatches}

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Set review with Swatches

It still isn't too late for that last minute Christmas shopping! Shopping for a girl who is into makeup is probably the easiest thing you've had to do all December. There are so many options that it can (hopefully) be hard to go wrong. For the holidays, Kat Von D has brought out a 'try them all' set of minis of her highly coveted Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks. The set includes 8 3ml/0.10 fl oz. minis in various shades.

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Set review with Swatches
 L to R: KVD Everlasting Liquid Lipstick - Lovesick, Mother, Santa Sangre, Backstage Bambi, L.U.V., Echo, Roxy, Plath

The last two, Roxy and Plath, are new shades added to the Kat Von D collection. 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Lovesick Swatch Worn
Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "Lovesick" 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Mother Swatch
 Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "Mother" 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Santa Sangre Swatch
 Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "Santa Sangre" 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Backstage Bambi Swatch
 Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "Backstage Bambi" 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick LUV Swatch
 Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "L.U.V." 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Echo Swatch
 Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "Echo" 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Roxy Swatch
 Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "Roxy" 

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Plath Swatch
Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in "Plath" 

The liquid lipstick shades in this set are so different! Also, my apologies for not being able to properly follow the lines of my lips, btw! If you are looking for neutrals this is not the place to find it. The most neutral shades are the first two, Lovesick (a mauve nude) and Mother (a dusty mauve pink), and Mother is even a little too pinky for my liking. My favourite shades have to be Lovesick, and Plath (deep russet red/brown). Echo (satin navy blue) had to be the hardest and most uneven to apply because it is such a strong colour.

In terms of the formula, the Everlasting Liquid Lipstick is one of my favourite liquid lipsticks because of the high range of colours and the way they feel on the lips. They are light, not super drying (but still drying on my lips), and are true matte liquid lipsticks. For more vibrant shades, they do need at least 2 layers, but the staying power is great and there is little to no transfer.

The set retails for $62 CAD, and if you're lucky you can still pick one up at a Sephora location or on Kat Von D's website!

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

Marc Jacobs Object of Desire Face & Eye Palette Review

marc jacobs object of desire face and eye palette review

Marc Jacobs Object of Desire Face & Eye Palette is a limited edition palette for the holidays. It comes in a gorgeous gold clutch-like casing with a black tassel zipper! The packaging is so gorgeous I didn't even want to use it at first! I'm so glad I did, as this is the first time I've tried makeup by Marc Jacobs and I am so surprised at the quality and pigmentation..

marc jacobs object of desire face and eye palette review
marc jacobs object of desire face and eye palette review

The palette comes with a large Perfect Tan Bronzer (Tantric), blush (Exhibitionist), and luminizer (Make a Sheen) for the face. The rest of the 6 shades to the right are eyeshadow shades. They might look a little colourful but I found them to be very neutral.. definitely colours I could wear on a regular basis.

The packaging itself is gorgeous, again, but the zippered clutch itself is pretty bulky and a little bit of a burden to fit in a makeup bag (meaning, -> it doesn't fit in a regular makeup bag.. but it will fit in a large overnight makeup case, if that makes things better). I think the only real solution if you don't like the packaging is to depot each pan. I've never really done it but I'm sure I would do it eventually when I get tired of lugging this around!

marc jacobs object of desire face and eye palette swatches
Tantric (Perfect Tan Bronzer), Exhibitionist (Blush), Make a Sheen (Luminizer), Eyeshadows: Lights On, Candlelight, Dimmer, Violet Hour, Twilight, In The Dark 

O!Mega Perfect Tan Bronzer: Tantric (Warm)
Blush: Exhibitionist (Peachy Rose)
Luminizer: Make a Sheen (Cool Gold Shimmer)

Lights On (beige shimmer)
Candlelight (golden shimmer)
Dimmer (matte light tan)
Violet Hour (matte lavender mauve)
Twilight (satin deep plum)
In the Dark (deep brown shimmer)

The palette is super pigmented, I wasn't disappointed with any shade! The blush is probably the only shade I won't be using often because I just don't typically wear blush. I surprisingly was able to create an eyeshadow look using basically all of the shadows (see below)! I'm not usually able to do that but the colours worked together so well in this palette.

Swatches above were done on top of concealer.

marc jacobs object of desire face and eye palette makeup look
marc jacobs object of desire face and eye palette makeup look
Wearing Marc Jacobs Object of Desire Face & Eye Palette: Tantric Bronzer on the cheeks, Make a Sheen Luminizer on cheekbones.
(Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lovesick on the lips)

marc jacobs object of desire face and eye palette makeup look
Wearing Marc Jacobs Plush Eyeshadows: Candelight, Dimmer, Violet Hour, Twilight, In The Dark
(Kat Von D Tattoo Liner on upper lashline)

I incorporated just about every shadow in the palette (on the eyes for this look! Violet Hour all over the lid, Twilight in the crease, In The Dark in the corner of the crease only, and to add some shimmer Candelight on the inner part of my lids. I used Dimmer to help blend out Violet Hour and add some definition.

Overall I am so happy using this palette! The eyeshadows are so easy to work with, very blendable, and the face products quite impressed me too! This is such an amazing gift and I would totally be satisfied with this for Christmas! The downside is that Marc Jacobs makeup is a little pricey, so this palette is going for $86 CAD right now at Sephora stores and online

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

L'Occitane Holiday Beauty Advent Calendar

L'Occitane Holiday Beauty Advent Calendar 2016

Beauty Advent Calendar's have become a huge thing these past few years! Cosmetic companys know that these just bring out the kid in us, how can we say no? L'Occitane's Advent Calendar for the 2016 holidays consists of 24 sample sized gifts for a surprise every day before Christmas! Valued at $110 CAD, this calendar costs $59 and is the perfect gift for a friend, sister, significant other, or child. 

This is the first beauty advent calendar I've ever tried and I can say that it makes me want more!! Is it sad that I actually get excited to open a new window every day, but I really just want to open them all at once? It feels like when I was a child and would cheat and open 3 chocolates in one day.

L'Occitane Holiday Beauty Advent Calendar 2016

Spoiler Alert!!
L'Occitane Holiday Beauty Advent Calendar 2016L'Occitane Holiday Beauty Advent Calendar 2016

L'Occitane Holiday Beauty Advent Calendar 2016
Cooling Hand Creme Gel, Ultra Rich Body Lotion, Milk Concentrate, Verbena Refreshing Cloth, Relaxing Shower Gel

In order to not spoil everything and keep in good Christmas spirit, I've only had the chance to open 5 doors so far and these are the first 5 gifts in the advent calendar (above). So far it's looking so promising and I really hope I can stick to opening one a day for the rest of December, wish me luck please!

L'Occitane's 2016 Advent Calendar is showing sold out on their website, but you may still be able to find it in stores. I think it's a great treat for someone who is into body care! Really a fun gift (or keep for yourself) idea.

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

Sephora Sparkle & Shine Stocking Stuffers

sephora sparkle and shine stocking stuffers holiday 2016

I know Sephora's checkout aisle gets to you. It gets to me too. I am like a kid in a candy store when I finish my round of the store and make my way to the checkout. Ugh..like having to avoid eye contact with all the miniature sized goodies so I don't end up spending an extra $50 bucks! But during the holiday season I actually love these kind of displays. Mini items like this are great for stocking stuffers for family, or perfect to put in a personalized gift basket! The Sparkle & Shine Collection has a super cute design, is Limited Edition, and out now for the 2016 holiday season!

•  Sephora Sparkle & Shine Skinny Brush Set (here's a link to similar set)
•  Sephora Dual Boar Mini Brush $19
•  Sephora Strays Away Set of 4 Mini Tweezers
•  Sephora Sparkle & Shine Classic Mini Multitasker Brush #45.5 $18
•  Sephora Sparkle & Shine Lash Curler $23

sephora sparkle and shine the universalist makeup travel cosmetic case holiday 2016

I know a bit too big to be a stocking stuffer, but the Sephora Sparkle & Shine The Universalist Cosmetic Bag is probably one of the cutest cosmetic bags that can literally fit everything! Heck, even my straightener pretty much fits in here! It has a top compartment with a brush holder (can you say holy grail makeup bag!?!) and enough pockets for smaller items. For $61 CAD, I think it's a good investment. Sephora needs to bring out more colour options!

sephora studley the perfectionist sponge and travel case set holiday 2016

And lastly, how can I forget my favourite, the Sephora Studley Sponge and Travel Case Set? This cutie comes with a The Perfectionist Pink Airbrush Sponge on a detachable case and keychain. It's cute and isn't useless because it actually comes with the makeup sponge! I have a full review of the Sephora 'The Perfectionist' sponges here, if you want to see how well it performed compared to my Beauty Blender.

If you don't like these, there are so many other options for stocking stuffers on Sephora.com and in stores. I don't think I'd look anywhere else while shopping for a makeup lover this Christmas!

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

Atelier Cologne Necessaire Citrus Cologne Absolue Set

Atelier Cologne Necessaire Citrus Cologne absolue Set
Atelier Cologne Necessaire Citrus Cologne Absolue Set

For the holiday season, Atelier Cologne brought out a few gift sets with deluxe sample-sized fragrances. I was excited to see this as I always hear positive comments about the brand! Atelier's fragrances are made in France and each and every scent are said to have a story behind it, a 'moment in a bottle'. The set I have here is the 'Necessaire Citrus Cologne Absolue Set'.

The Citrus Set consists of four 4ml/0.14 fl oz. mini colognes which makes it a little on the expensive side for deluxe sample sizes.

The four scents ..

•  Pomelo Paradis *new (fresh pomelo from Florida over rich notes of blackcurrant bud)
•  Orange Sanguine (zesty burst of crushed ripe fruit, sweet blood orange juice against bitter orange peel & geranium)
•  Bergamote Soleil (unisex fragrance with soft hint of floral)
•  Clementine California *new (fruity, green and sweet fragrance)

They are strongly scented and pretty true to the descriptions. I am terrible at describing fragrance notes but I'm not afraid to say that my absolute favourite is Pomelo Paradis! It is the most yummy fruity, likely due to the blackcurrant, and I couldn't stop smelling this one. The rest of the scents are also pretty true to their descriptions which surprised me! The way the scents matched their description reminded me of the brand Demeter Fragrance, but with a more concentrated and highly thought-out line of luxurious scents. I'm not going to lie, I felt a little expensive wearing these scents throughout the day. The only scent I didn't like was Bergamote Soleil, I had a feeling it was a unisex fragrance when I tested it, and it just doesn't make me feel sexy when wearing it (I regretted spraying it over my shirt)! I will probably use it as a room spray or give it to my boyfriend.

I was afraid the scents might be a little similar when I found out this was a citrus collection of scents, but they are all so unique against each other! They all pack a punch and seem to be concentrated enough that you don't need to use more than one or two sprays.

The set is available at Sephora stores and online for a limited time at $32 CAD ($64 value).

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