Spring YAYs & NAYs – Skincare and Beauty Favourites

Hello my dears,

It has been so long. I am not going to get into the whys and whatnots. Instead, let’s just pick up where we left off and get right into some fun. Today I want to start doing a new series of regular monthly posts. I want to share with you my favourite products for the month, as well as a few sad trombone products (because we all love to dish the tea).

In the future I would also like to do a monthly video of me using my favourites, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links, which means I receive compensation for your clicks or purchases. Feel free to not use my links if that makes you uncomfortable. More information about my affiliations and compensation can be found here on my disclosure page. Affiliate links, or links for which I would receive compensation, will be marked with a *.

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My Favourite Makeup

Primer: *Hard Candy Sheer Envy Primer Lift & Firm ($9-16CAD)

After hearing Emily Noel talk about the Hard Candy Primers, I had to try them. I rushed in to Walmart and saw that the hydrating primer was sold out so I grabbed this one instead. It feels light weight on, and I like the way my makeup applies over top. I’m not sure about the lifting and firming claims, but I do enjoy the way I look when I wear it.

Foundation: *GOSH CC Cream Illuminating Foundation in 02 Ivory (Also Available *here) (16-25CAD)

This was a totally random buy for me. I haven’t had much luck with GOSH products in the past, but I saw this on sale at Shoppers Drug Mart (5CAD! I had to!) and couldn’t refuse a cheap illuminating foundation. I am so in love with it! The coverage is way better than I anticipated from a CC Cream, somewhere around medium. I love how moisturizing this feels and the glow it gives my skin. This is a perfect product for a natural looking makeup day or a day that you want to just throw something on without needing a brush or beauty blender. One pretty major negative I see here is that there are only 8 shades available. I also would suggest that people with oily skin skip this one as it is VERY moisturizing.

Concealer: Rimmel Match Perfection 2 in 1 Skintone Adapting Concealer and Highlighter (Available *here, *here and *here) ($7-15CAD)

I got into makeup because of my dark circles. I have extremely pale skin that is very thin around my eyes. Add to that, I don’t get enough water or enough sleep and you get some serious panda eyes. As a result, I am a big fan of concealers and very particular about what I like. This Rimmel concealer is a little thick, but it blends out easily (I prefer using a beauty blender with this product). It’s pigmented enough to get the job done and even does great on blemishes. It’s highlighting without any shimmer, glitter or shine. It doesn’t dry out my undereyes and it feels nice. It does have a tendency to settle into lines, so you do need to set it pretty quickly, but I am ok with that. It is also a great product for carving out your brows, touching up your wing or your lipstick. Love it!

Loose Powder: bareMinerals Hydrating Mineral Veil (available *here, *here and here) ($27CAD)

I picked up this powder from Sephora a year ago, for my birthday. I was excited to try a hydrating powder, especially because my skin had been very very dry due to our new air conditioner. My first impression of it wasn’t great. I found the tint of the powder too dark for my skin tone (I’m very fair) and I felt it was heavy feeling. I’m not sure what changed, but I pulled this out of my collection to give it another shot and I LOVE it now. The colour isn’t perfect (I wish it was transparent or translucent), but it works well with my summer skin tone. In fact, this is my new favourite summer powder. It doesn’t feel heavy, but it doesn’t dry me out like regular setting powders. I don’t recommend it for under the eyes, at least for dry skin or fair tones, as it’s too dark and does emphasize lines and dryness. It sets my foundation perfectly without a powdery look.

Under Eye Setting Powder: Elf Illuminating Palette (available *here, *here and *here) ($8CAD)

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I’m sure you are a little confused by the category that I’ve put this in. An illuminating palette to set under the eyes? Yep. I first saw this on youtube (can’t remember who it was…maybe thataylaa?) and decided I had to try it. I’ve heard these powders are comparable to the hourglass ambient light powders. I would have to agree. They aren’t as dry in texture, but their look as a setting powder is similar. I don’t find these powders glittery or shimmery at all, which is why they work for me under my eyes. They are smooth and lovely on the skin. I use a combination of the top two powders to either wipe away my bake or to set under the eye, and the bottom two for elsewhere on the face if I want a more glowy finish. I use a sheer amount so as to not end up with patches of highlight on the skin. You can certainly build these up and use them as intended as highlights, but for me, they are amazing for setting.

Pressed Powder: CoverGirl Advanced Radiance Pressed Powder Compact (available *here, and here) ($8CAD)

This was a Tati youtube recommendation. I wanted to pick up a new luminous powder to try and when I saw Tati loved this one, I knew I had to give it a shot. I enjoy the way it sets my makeup and keeps it in place all day. I enjoy that this powder isn’t heavy and doesn’t make the skin matte. It’s not glittery or too glowy. It just gives my skin a more skin like look. It is very fair and has a white cast, so I wouldn’t recommend it for deeper skin tones, but it works for me (I am very fair). I don’t use this one under the eyes unless it’s just to wipe away a bake.

Bronzer: Physician’s Formula Butter Bronzer in Light Bronzer (available *here, and here) ($20CAD)

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This bronzer is a fair skinned girl’s best friend. It is the perfect shade to give the face warmth without turning you into an oompa loompa. I have seen people use it to contour and it looked good (it’s still a little too warm for me to use it that way, but to each their own). I love how this applies. It’s pigmented enough to go on easily, but not so much that you have to be careful. It blends out like a dream and gives the skin such a beautiful natural glow. I love the pina colada scent, however I would caution those who are scent sensitive that this is definitely a highly fragranced product. I wish physician’s formula would release a special unscented version for those who need it, as this product should be enjoyed by everyone.

Blush: Wet N Wild Pearlescent Pink (available *here , *here, and here) ($5-10CAD)

This blush is a drugstore cult favourite and I can totally see why. It reminds me very much of NARS orgasm, but it’s exactly the same. It is a beautiful bright peachy golden blush that is just perfect for the summer time. The formula is pigmented so be careful applying it. It doesn’t last forever on my skin, but I can forgive that due to the low price tag. It goes on smoothly, blends nicely and leaves a really pretty golden glow.

Highlighter: Smashbox Spotlight Palette in Pearl (available *here, *here, and here) ($40CAD)

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I am a huge fan of Casey Holmes and feel pretty strongly about supporting creators in whatever way I can. When I saw that Casey was collabing with Smashbox, I was thrilled. When I saw what she was making, I couldn’t wait until these beauties were released! Because of my cool tones and fair skin, I was attracted to the Pearl palette. Both palettes come with two highlighters and one glitter topper, which is a great concept. When I swatched this in store, I was blown away by how smooth and creamy these powders are. They are beautiful on the skin, and can go on as a beautiful sheer wash or can easily be built up for a blinding glow. I’ve been wearing these every time I do a full face and love using them as my inner corner highlight for my eyes and the glitter topper is gorgeous on the lid too!

Eyeshadow: Tarteist pro to go (available *here and here) ($30CAD)

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I grabbed this as an opportunity to try out tarte shadows without committing to a full palette. I have been eyeing the full *Tarteist pro Amazonian Clay palette since I first saw it on snapchat and trendmood. I love the idea of beautiful matte shades with a couple of intense foiled/metallic/glittery shadows. As I am no longer 20 and definitely have some texture on my eyelids, I find myself gravitating more towards mattes, and also appreciating a more well made foiled shadow. This small palette was exactly what I wanted. It let me play with the Tarte amazonian clay formulas without making a huge cash commitment. I absolutely love the feel of these shadows. They are insanely pigmented and so very soft. They do have a fair bit of kick up, but I am fine with that. The gold shade, hype, is absolutely freaking STUNNING. Seriously. It has surpassed *Urban Decay’s Half Baked as my all time favourite gold shadow. The mattes are smooth and blend beautifully and both foiled shades steal my magpie heart. I also love how trendy the colours are. Warm tones are in, folks, and they aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. This is a great way to try them out.

L’Oreal Infallible Eyeshadow pot in 892 Amber Rush (available *here and here) ($8-12CAD)

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I picked this colour up after hearing about it from several influencers on youtube and am so glad that I did. It is the perfect warm rose gold shade that everyone is super into right now. The infallible eyeshadows have a really interesting creamy formula that apply best with a finger (I blend it out with a synthetic brush). This shade is beautifully reflective and is fantastic for a middle of the lid pop or a super quick single eyeshadow look (which is what I’ve been doing lately). They last a long time and don’t crease on me. Keep the lids shut tight though, as they do dry out if you don’t.

Maybelline Color Tattoo Concentrated Crayon in Barely Beige and Bronze Truffle (available *here and *here) ($7-12CAD)

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As much as I love the warmth and the sunshine that comes with spring time, I have a really hard time with this season. I have allergies which cause my eyes to water like mad. My eyeshadow almost always gets creased or washed away as a result, which is incredibly frustrating and not at all attractive. These have been my saviour. I’ve been using these as either a base for my other shadows or as the main colour itself. They are waterproof and really do stick around. I especially enjoy using Barely Beige on the inner part of my lid, near the inner corner, as it brightens up any look and locks down in the area where I get the most tears. They are super easy to use and give good colour pay off. They set quickly though, so blend out (with your finger or a synthetic brush) not long after application.

Eyeliner: Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kajal in 005 Nude (available *here and here) ($7CAD)

Thanks to the never ending germ parade of junior kindergarten, the kids have been sick since the fall. No, really. It’s been brutal. As a result, I haven’t been getting much sleep at all. Add to that those aforementioned allergies and my eyes have been looking ROUGH lately. One of the ways I make my eyes look more awake and less desperate is by using a nude liner on my waterline to cancel out the redness. I’ve tried a few different ones, but the Rimmel Scandaleyes nude liner is my favourite. It goes on without tugging, cancels out the red and stays put.

Physican’s Formula Eye Booster 2 in 1 Liquid Liner and Serum in Ultra Black (available *here and here) ($15CAD)

Taylor from thataylaa on youtube talks about this liner all the time, so I decided to give it a shot. I am in love! It is by far my favourite liquid liner. I only wish it was waterproof, as I can’t wear this when my allergies are flaring up without ending up looking like a hot mess. The brush is long and thin, making it easy to lay down flat to cheat on my lines, and gives a nice precise wing. It’s super black and pigmented, which means I don’t need to go over my lines and risk ending up with massive wings of my goth days of high school. I enjoy that the formula has a built in lash serum, though I will say I haven’t noticed any difference in my lashes so far.

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Eyebrows: NYX micro brow pencil in Ash Brown (available *here, *here, and here) ($17CAD)

I was very reluctant to get on the brow love train. I just didn’t want to spend the time or the energy on getting my brows just right. Somehow, over the past year, I have been changing my ways and now it’s difficult for me to go out without something on my brows. When I’m looking to really go in and do my brows, this pencil is my favourite method. I love how fine it is. I’m able to create really thin hair like lines that blend in to my natural brows perfectly. The formula is stiff enough that it doesn’t just melt and smear all over the place, while being creamy enough that I’m not having to work too hard. I especially enjoy this colour as it is nice and cool toned without being too gray. As an added bonus, the attached spoolie is fantastic and really grabs those hairs to make blending easy.

Liquid Lipstick: Wet N Wild Liquid Catsuit in Rebel Rose (available *here and *here) ($5-11CAD)

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Another trend that I’ve been slow to has been matte liquid lipsticks. I have SUPER dry lips. It doesn’t matter how much I exfoliate, how I prep or prime them, these babies flake and crack every single day. Despite that, I have fallen for these incredibly affordable liquid lipsticks by Wet N Wild. The shade Rebel Rose is pigmented and smooth. I don’t need to layer it a bunch to get an opaque application, which means I am able to avoid the crumbles that sometimes comes with cheap liquid lipsticks. I don’t find it drying at all. It it very matte and lasts a while without falling apart on me. This specific shade is GORGEOUS and is my current fave for a really pretty rosey natural look.

Setting Spray: Pixi Skintreats Hydrating Milky Mist (available *here, here and here) ($20-30CAD)

I think I’ve been using facial mists and sprays for longer than most other makeup items. I used to be obsessed with this honey based one out of a small independent shoppe in Calgary. Since then, I’ve been on the hunt for an equally moisturizing spray that didn’t grease me up or ruin my makeup. I have finally found it! I use this as a makeup setting spray as a way to add just a little bit of moisture, make my highlight pop and to get rid of any powdery residue. It doesn’t really make my makeup last any longer, but that’s ok. I also like using this at night to lock in my night time routine.

OTHER

Delectable skin perfecting body bronzing lotion (available *here, *here, and here) ($10-20CAD)

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I haven’t had much luck with many other Delectable or Cake products, so I was a little unsure about trying this. The reviews were really great so I decided to give it a shot. It is such a nice body makeup that also doubles as a lotion. It gives a really nice warm bronzing and glow to the body. It does have glitter in it, but I don’t find that it translates as anything more than shimmer on the skin. I love using this on my arms, legs and shoulders this time of year when I want to fake a bit of sun kissed skin.

L’oreal Infallible Blend Artist Sponge (available *here and here) ($10CAD)

I love my beauty blender and Real Techniques sponge so I didn’t think I’d enjoy this as much as I did. It becomes GIANT when you wet it. It’s super soft and feels great on the skin. It doesn’t suck up a ton of product and really does a great job of blending foundation. No complaints here!

Aveda be curly curl enhancer (available *here , here and here) ($30-40CAD)

After my attempt at the curly girl method of hair care, I’ve decided to go back to my old routine. This is a staple of my curly hair routine. It’s a really lovely curl cream that helps fight frizz, gives me soft definition without crunch. I love the whole aveda be curly line and highly recommend it to everyone with curls or waves.

SKIN CARE

Etival Hydra boost serum (available only in store)

This was another Shoppers deal. Usually in the $30+ range, I snagged this for $5! It’s a really lovely hydrating serum that I use at night. I’ve noticed my skin has been feeling plumper and my dry patches are way less common. I wish I could find it online for you, but I fear this is being discontinued :/

Benefit Puff Off Instant Eye Gel (available *here and *here) ($CAD)

With my allergies and lack of sleep, my undereyes can sometimes be super puffy and unhappy. This great gel and applicator really help reduce the puffiness and make makeup glide on. I love it even more when I remember to store it in the fridge for extra coolness.

Bioderma Sebium Gel Moussant Purifying cleansing foaming gel (available here and here) ($10-20CAD)

This time of year my skin goes more on the combination side of things, so while I love my usual cleansers, I like to mix this in to my routine to  help deal with my oiliness and the heaviness of my sunscreen. It cleans my face beautifully without stripping the skin.

The Before…

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The After…

NAYS

The disclaimer: These are products that just didn’t work out for me. If you love them, please don’t be insulted. Our skin, colouring and tastes are different. Different tastes is what makes the world so interesting :) Also, just because I don’t like a specific product doesn’t mean I don’t like the brand.

Benefit Gimme Brow in shade 1. I thought I loved this for a long time. Unfortunately, I see now that it just don’t have the hold that I need from a brow gel and it doesn’t do enough filling to make it a good quick and easy stand alone product.

Maybelline Master Fix Setting Spray: I wanted to love this. I am a drugstore girl at heart. That said, I don’t enjoy the spray (camel spit, very wet). I haven’t noticed it extending my makeup. There are just better options out there.

Benefit Stay Flawless 15 Hour Primer: I snagged this at Shopper’s Drug Mart for a crazy discounted price (under 5$), so I really shouldn’t complain..but here we are. I just don’t see this primer doing anything for me. My makeup doesn’t stick around any longer, doesn’t apply any smoother and my skin doesn’t look any better. Womp womp.

Say Yes to Cucumbers Soothing Facial Wipes: I’m trying to be better to my skin and give up using baby wipes to remove my makeup. I grabbed these are they are marketed as being ideal for sensitive skin. Well, firstly I didn’t find them soothing. They sting my skin and my eyes, and they are heavily scented. Also, they aren’t great at removing make up at all. Not a fan.

Ok everyone, that’s it for now! I hope you enjoyed checking out all of my faves from the last few months! Comment below what you love for this warmer weather!

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