July Boxycharm 2021

Hey guys! Can you believe July is almost over already? It feels just like yesterday that I was writing my June Boxycharm post. I’ve been so busy this month that it’s made the time fly by. Anyway today I am sharing my review of the products I received in my July Boxycharm. If you want to know what my first impressions were or to see the products visually, check out my Youtube video!

A variation of Boxycharm's July box.

The first product in my box is the Alamar Cosmetics Brighten & Bronze Complexion Trio. I received the shade fair/light, which matches me perfectly. I much prefer getting something that matches my skin tone than a palette that is for everyone because I can use every single powder in the trio. The trio has a brightening shade, a bronze shade and a deeper contour shade. The powders are very buttery and apply well to the skin. There is a slight sheen to the powders as well. The sheen is nice for the bronzer but I’m not a fan of having the sheen in the highlight shade. I prefer a matte setting powder but that’s my personal preference. If you have dry skin you’ll love this. Overall I think the trio is great and I see myself reaching for this very often. Price: $25 US

The next product is The Lyfestyle Co. Detox Hair Serum. This serum is meant to soothe dry and itchy scalp, strengthen hair and promote hair growth. I did check and it is Curly Girl approved – if you want to learn more about that check out my curly hair blog post. I only used this serum twice because I kept on forgetting to use it in my hair since it’s supposed to be used on the scalp after washing it. The first time I only added a bit and didn’t notice a difference. The second time I used more and found my hair looked so greasy. I don’t use hair serums so I’m not sure what’s the correct amount. Overall I’m not sure how much I’m going to use this serum, it’s just not something I need. And since it’s such a high price tag not sure I would recommend it. Price: $79 US

Another expensive product is the Mudmasky Vitamin Infused Eye Serum. This eye serum is a blend of vitamin c and other ingredients to firm and hydrate the eye area. It takes a couple of weeks to see results but so far I like it! This eye serum goes on easily because it’s quite liquid. It doesn’t have a scent. What I like the most is that it quickly absorbs into the skin. This is great in the morning when I apply makeup after doing my skincare. Some eye creams take a while to absorb and can affect my makeup application. I have no problem with this serum. The only thing I’m not a huge fan of is the packaging. It looks a little cheap and the cap isn’t smooth, the edge feels unfiled. I won’t give my stamp of approval until I’ve tested it for the recommended three to four weeks, but so far so good! Price: $63 US, $79 CAD

The next product is the Grande Cosmetics Grandeglow Plumping Liquid Highlight. I got the shade French Pearl. This highlight is meant to have a plumping system to firm and tighten fine lines while also giving the skin a radiant, luminescent glow. I love how this highlight looks on my skin. It doesn’t have any glitter or chunks, instead it gives a natural glow to the skin. The formula is a little tricky to work with. It dries quickly so I have to work quickly or otherwise it becomes patchy or won’t blend. So not the most user-friendly highlight. Also the first time I used the highlight I didn’t feel any plumping effect, but the second time I used more and felt a tingle on my face. I don’t necessarily need a plumping highlight, my face is already round enough haha. I will say that the tingle effect isn’t consistent. Sometimes I feel it and sometimes I don’t. Overall I like the highlight for its look and I would recommend it for that reason. Price: $25 US

The final product in my box is the Billion Dollar Brows Brows On Point Micro Pencil. I got the shade Taupe, which is quite deceiving. Most brands will call their light brown shade taupe so I didn’t think this would match me. But Billion Dollar Brows named their medium to dark brunette Taupe so it matches me perfectly. The pencil itself is pretty average. It’s quite pigmented so if I press too hard it shows up very dark. But it’s creamy enough that I can smudge away any mistakes. I have noticed that the spoolie at the end is a little short, I’m used to something longer. Overall I found with brow pencils as long as their the right shade I can make it work. It’s nothing special but also not bad. Price: $16 US

The final total of the box is $208 US. The total is high because of the eye serum and hair serum. Overall a pretty good box. I thin besides the hair serum I see myself using all the products. If you get Boxycharm, let me know in the comments what products you got! I’m always curious what the other variations are!

xoxo

Lea

Sephora Skincare Haul

Hey guys! Today I have a mini Sephora Haul. I had to repurchase a few things and decided to pick up two new things with my order as well. Not a huge haul but still exciting nonetheless. Okay, let’s get into the products.

Sephora haul featuring MAC, Belif and OleHenriksen products.

First I repurchase the Ole Henriksen Balancing Force Oil Control Toner. If you read my product empties post you would know I finished this toner recently. I need it in my life so I repurchased it! I’ve said this before, but if you have oily skin you need this in your life. I really notice a difference in my skin texture and oiliness. It just helps smooth my skin and reduces how quickly I get oily. I use this every morning after I cleanse my skin and I don’t see myself stopping any time soon.

The next repurchase is the MAC Prep + Prime Fix+. I’ve had a MAC Fix+ in my makeup collection for years now, but decided to switch things up and get the coconut scent this time. If you’re going to have one setting spray in your collection, make it this one. The mist is super fine so it won’t ruin your makeup and just feel soft and gentle. The actual formula is great because it helps melt powders into the skin so they don’t look powdery or cakey. But it won’t add extra shine which is great for me since I’m an oily gal. It helps improve the look of my makeup. The coconut scent is nice – not too strong and sweeter than sunscreeny. I love this setting spray and would highly recommend it.

Now for new products. The first being the belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb. I needed a new moisturizer and decided to give this one a try since I’ve heard really good things about it. I also decided to get the mini size just in case I don’t like it. This is a lightweight gel that is supposed to give a burst of hydration and quickly absorb into the skin without looking heavy or greasy. I’d say that the claims are true! It’s a gel formula which I prefer. It does leave my skin feeling hydrated and does absorb into the skin super quickly. It absorbs so well into the skin that my skin almost looks matte, very similar to the Origins Matte Moisturizer. While I do like it and will finish it, I’m on the fence if I would repurchase it. I will update you when I finish the product.

And for the final product, I purchased the Ole Henriksen Lemonade Smoothing Scrub, which I also purchased in a mini size. I’ve mentioned this in my product empties post but I’m on the search for the best exfoliator for my skin. I thought I would hit a home run with this one but it’s just average. This scrub has AHAs, lemon peel and sugar to provide both a chemical and physical exfoliation to the skin. I like the consistency of the scrub – it’s not too thick and abrasive but enough that I can feel it on my face. And I like the light citrus smell as well. The only thing is that I don’t really notice a difference. With an exfoliator, I want an instant result so it’s a little disappointing to not notice anything. I’ll continue to use it but I wouldn’t be repurchasing.

And that’s my little Sephora haul guys! Let me know if you’ve tried any of these products before and if so what were your thoughts!

xoxo

Lea

Product Empties July 2021

Hey guys! It’s been a couple of months but today I’m going to be sharing some of my product empties. I always like doing these posts because I’ve finished the product so I have a good idea of what the product is like. So let’s get into it.

The first product is perfume! Back in the spring, I got into wearing perfume daily. I never wore perfume much and found all my perfumes were just sitting unused. So I made it my mission to use them more and because of that, I finished the True Religion Hippie Chic. I’m 90% sure that this perfume is discontinued because it’s only available on Amazon and eBay. Which is fine with me because I wouldn’t repurchase it. This was the first perfume I got as a teenager and while it’s a good teen scent it’s not as much my thing anymore. The notes are Red Apple, Raspberry, Pomegranate, Hibiscus, Lily-of-the-Valley, Star Jasmine, Wood and Musk. It’s much fruitier than what I typically go for. It was good for when I was a teen but now I like other scents.

The next product is the Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub. I’m currently on the hunt for my favourite exfoliator. I liked the Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser and I’ve been comparing everything I tried to that one. I like an exfoliator that has something physical to it, but not necessarily St. Ives level of physical. That’s why I liked the Murad one because it was slightly physical but also chemical as well. This Cetaphil one was just too gentle for me. It says that there are micro-fine bamboo particles but I didn’t feel any. It wasn’t bad, like my face still felt clean after using it. But it was more similar to using a cleanser than an exfoliator. Still on the hunt for my favourite but it might be the Murad one.

I think the next product has been discontinued or at least renamed. I finished the Tarte Ready, Set, Radiant Skin mist and I can’t seem to find it anywhere. But on the Tarte website, they have the Rainforest of the Sea 4-in-1 Mist which sounds similar. Either way, I’m not sure I would repurchase it. The mist isn’t the finest and sprays droplets everywhere. I also found that the formula is more hydrating than setting down makeup. Then I read somewhere that it’s good to wet the face before applying hyaluronic acid and decided to try this mist and loved it for that use! Since the mist wasn’t fine it got my face wet quickly. It also provided extra skincare benefits on top of the hyaluronic acid. And finally, it has a cucumber scent that is nice while applying skincare. The reason why I wouldn’t repurchase is I think I can get a mist for cheaper than this that would do a similar job.

Taking a step away from skincare, I had a deluxe sample of the Drunk Elephant Sili Body Lotion. This lotion is meant to restore dry, dull and irritated skin. It was a thin liquid but was quite hydrating. It was easy to spread all over the body and sank into the skin easily. The scent was pretty basic. There is no added fragrance so it just smells like a combo of the marula and shea butter in the lotion. If you don’t like overly fragranced body lotions, then you’ll love this. I, on the other hand, love scented body lotions so I won’t be picking this up again because the scent was pretty basic.

Another body product, this one I did not like, was the Quo Vanilla Brulee Salt Scrub. I was looking to try a new body scrub and saw this one. I wasn’t able to smell it so I just bought it on a whim. I thought it would be a nice vanilla scent but no it just smells like straight-up salt and vanilla extract – not very pleasant. I also find that the scrub melts away easily so I can’t get a good scrub in before it dissolves. Was not a fan and will not be repurchasing.

The next product is a sample of the Origins Checks and Balances Frothy Face Wash. This cleanser should be right up my alley because it’s meant for oily skin to remove makeup, impurities and surface oils. But I found it was a little too aggressive. My face always felt tight after I used it. It also has a strong mint scent, which isn’t my favourite. I always had to hold my breath while using it. Overall not my favourite and I wouldn’t purchase a full size.

If you’ve read any of my product empties posts, then you’ll know I love the Fresh Soy Face Cleanser. Sephora usually has the deluxe sample as a point perk so I always have one kicking around. And for a good reason because this cleanser is gentle but effective. This is a great second cleanser to use after removing makeup because it’ll get rid of any leftover makeup and cleanse the skin but not strip it. And I love the light cucumber scent. You need to try this cleanser if you haven’t already yet.

A product that I haven’t finished but will be throwing away is the Wander Beauty Lift Off Purifying and Brightening Peel Off Mask. I know that peel-off masks were big a couple of years ago and I had this one kicking around because I got it in my Boxycharm. I decided to use it the other day after not using it in months. It broke me out so badly. And not just around my chin, where I normally get acne. I had small pimples all over my face. I know for sure it was because of this mask. It might be expired but I believe my face just doesn’t like peel-off masks so I decided to get rid of it.

Now one of my favourite products that I have already repurchased is the Ole Henriksen Balancing Force Oil Control Toner. I can’t live without this stuff. I do notice a difference in the texture of my skin when I don’t use it. The toner evens out my face and helps keep the oils at bay. If you deal with texture skin and oiliness, you need this toner in your life.

Now for a drugstore product, I have the NYX Dewy Finish Setting Spray. I’ve mentioned this spray quite a bit on my blog because it’s so good. It helps melt all the product into the skin and makes me look dewy but not oily. And it’s also so affordable, it’s only $11. This is like my third bottle and I see myself buying more in the future. I purchase the Radiant Finish to test it out and see if it’s any different compared to the dewy.

And the final product is my BareMinerals Translucent Powder Duo. If you’ve been keeping up with my project pan then this powder is probably familiar to you. I finished the matte side of the powder and don’t like the glow side so I decided it was time to just toss it out. It feels pretty good to finish a makeup product up because that doesn’t happen very often. Unfortunately, the powder has been discontinued so there isn’t much point in me giving a review since you can’t purchase it. But I just wanted to mention it since I’m proud that I finished it!

And those are the products that I finished recently! Let me know in the comments if you guys have tried any of these products before and what your thoughts were on them.

xoxo

Lea

Battle of the Pimple Patches – Which one is the best on the market

Hey guys! Today’s post has been in the making for a while. I bought some pimple patches back in the winter and I liked them. So I decided to buy a few more and test out to figure which brand has the best patches. The funny thing is that my skin was pretty good in the spring so it took me forever to test because I had no pimples! Lately, my skin has been freaking out, I think mainly from increased makeup and mask-wearing so I’ve been using pimple patches more. I have four different brands and we’re going to break each one down.

Pimple or acne patches have become popular within the last year. Instead of applying a sheet mask all over the face, you put the patch on a specific spot, usually a pimple, to help heal it. The idea is that it’s targeting a specific spot. The pimple patches come in a variety of sizes and colours depending on the brand. The majority you wear for a prolonged period of time, so it’s nice to put them on at night and sleep with it to help heal a pimple. As someone who suffers from acne, I was willing to try anything to help with my acne.

Comparing Peace Out, Yes To and Rael pimple patches

The first brand I tried was the Peace Out Salicylic Acid Acne Healing Dots. I got these while I was working at Sephora because I heard good things about them. These patches are the biggest of the four I have, being 1.8cm in diameter. They also have a yellow tinge to them, so they are visible on the face. The bigger size means that if I have a large pimple or two beside each other it can cover both. It sticks easily to the face, but it’s thick so I do feel it on my face. These work well, especially on whiteheads. I place it on a whitehead and it will be cleaned out and healed by the next day. If you’re someone who struggles with the urge to pop pimples using these helps get rid of the whitehead without popping. I would say these are the best I’ve tried but they are also the most expensive at $25 for 20 patches.

The next patches I tried are the Yes To Tomatoes Zit Zapping Dots. I picked these up at Shoppers. While they are easily available, they are my least favourite. The patches are black and red, so they are not subtle whatsoever. Couldn’t get away with wearing these during the day. They are very thin plastic and I find that they don’t stick to my face very well. They’re fine on a part of my face, like my cheeks, but stay on my chin or jawline. And they’re just not as effective. The Peace Out ones can clear the gunk out of a white head, these will just bring everything to the surface. The ones I got on Amazon are cheaper and better so I would pass on these.

Then I decided to try two from Amazon. The first is the Rael Microcrystal Acne Healing Patch. These are meant for early-stage, cystic pimples. These look different. There is an outer ring and then an inner ring that has little dots. I believe it’s designed to go deep into the skin and penetrate the pimple. The patch as a whole is 1.9cm, but the inner ring is only 1.4cm. These aren’t bad, but I don’t find them as effective as the Peace Out ones. As well, they are $18 for 9 patches. The cost per patch is worst than Peace Out as well.

My runner-up after Peace Out is the Rael Pimple Healing Patch. These are similar to the Peace Out where they are meant to draw out the pus on surface-level pimples. They are much smaller than the Peace Out ones, being only 1cm in size. So sometimes I have to use two patches beside each other if I have a cluster whereas I could use one Peace Out patch. But I found that these are very discreet on the face. They are clear and blend easily into the face. I wore them while filming the other day and I couldn’t notice it when I was looking back into the footage. So if you want something discreet I would recommend these. They’re not as good as the Peace Out ones but I think they still do a good job. And they’re much cheaper at $9.16 for 24 patches.

Comparing Peace Out, Yes To and Rael pimple patches

If I were to rank these it would be a tie between Rael Pimple Healing Patch and Peace Out. Peace Out is the most effective and bigger sized whereas Rael is discreet and cheaper. Then Rael Micocrystal would be third and Yes To would be last.

I hope you guys found this post helpful! And if you have a favourite pimple patch that I didn’t mention, let me know in the comments I’d love to try it out!

xoxo

Lea

June Boxycharm 2021

Hey guys! I survived my first week of work! One of the benefits of going into an office is that I now wear makeup every day during the week. So I’ve been able to really put this month’s Boxycharm products to the test. For those of you who don’t know, Boxycharm is a subscription beauty box that sends out 5 full-size products every month. The base box is $25 US and I pay whatever the exchange rate is at the time by card is charged. Let’s get into this month’s box!

Boxycharm's June box that includes Glamglow cleanser, Touch in Sol highlight palette, Jecca Blac primer, Nars lip pencil and Aceology lip maks.

The first product in this month’s box is the GlamGlow Supercleanse Clearing Cream-to-Foam Cleanser. This cleanser has a blend of three charcoals to detoxify the skin, clear pores and remove makeup. With most cleansers, I would wet my face and then apply the cleanser to my wet skin. With this cleanser, I squeeze some onto my hands, wet the cleanser and then apply it. I do find that sometimes I have to add water to my face after applying because it’s too dry. Overall the Glamglow cleanser isn’t bad but it stings my eyes so I don’t use it to remove makeup. This would be a good shower cleanser because it would be easier to get it wet and easier to remove. I think this might be breaking me out, or I could be breaking out from wearing a mask more (since I’m leaving the house more for work). I need to test it out a bit more so it doesn’t quite yet have my stamp of approval. Price: $32 US, $42 CAD

Up next is the product that I selected. Boxycharm now allows you to pick one product in your box. I often forget to pick (I didn’t pick in time for July oops) but I did remember for June and picked the Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil. I picked Dolce Vita, a dusty rose, which was one of the few natural options Boxycharm had. I really like this lip pencil. I’ve been wearing it every day to work this past week. The name matte can be deceiving because people would think this lip might be drying and uncomfortable. But I would just describe this as not-shiny. It’s still very creamy and applies easily to the lips. It’s not the most long-lasting, it will come off after I eat. But colour and formula make this a great everyday lip product. Highly recommend! Price: $27 US, $35 CAD

Touch in Sol Pretty Filter Glowdient Makeup Palette highlight palette.

The next product is the Touch in Sol Pretty Filter Glowdient Makeup Palette. I was excited to try out this product since I love the primers from Touch in Sol. I’m on the fence about this palette. I’ve said this before many times, but I’m not a huge fan of face palettes because I often don’t use all the shades. I would wear the three shades on the left, but the two shades on the right are just too dark for me. On the other hand, the formula is nice. These highlights are so soft and creamy that they blend seamlessly onto the skin. Such a great formula. While I love the formula it is annoying because I would prefer having one highlight instead of a full palette. Also, the packaging is plastic and very cheap feeling. As I said, I’m on the fence. Price: $34 US

Up next is the Aceology Overnight Lip Mask. This lip mask is pretty mediocre. First not a huge fan of the packaging. I wish the tube had an angled applicator because I find those easier to apply to the lips. Instead, I have to squeeze it onto my finger and then apply it to my lips. The mask itself is pretty average. It does hydrate but by morning my lips are dry again. For example, the Lanolips lip ointment is so good that the next morning I still have product on my lip. This lip mask isn’t bad it’s just not that impressive. It does have a coconut scent which is nice though! Price: $19 US

The final product is the Jecca Blac Hydrate Primer. This primer isn’t bad but it’s not my thing. This primer is meant to just hydrate the skin. To be honest the texture and finish on the skin just remind me of a moisturizer. Since I have oily skin I don’t need extra hydration because I use a moisturizer during my skincare routine. I want my primers to either smooth my skin, blur my pores or add some luminosity. This primer doesn’t do any of those things so it’s kinda pointless for me. I can understand if you have very dry skin this would be nice to add some extra hydration. I’ll keep this for the winter when my skin is on the drier side, but I don’t see myself reaching for this every day. Price: $20 US, $27.75 CAD

The overall total of my box is $132. Not the most impressive value and not the most impressive box. I really like the Nars Lip Pencil. The rest of the products are mediocre. I’ll continue to use them but they didn’t wow me and they weren’t products I would repurchase.

Let me know what you guys think. Do you think this is a good box? If you get Boxycharm let me know what products you got in your box!

xoxo

Lea

Nighttime Skincare Routine

Hey guys! Today I decided to share my nighttime skincare with you. The last time I shared a skincare routine it was my morning one, so I thought it was time to share my evening routine. While some things are the same, I have to remove my makeup in the evening so it’s a slightly different process. Let’s get into it.

Nighttime skincare routine including: Laneige, Versed and KylieSkin cleansers, OleHenriksen toner, Murad moisturizer, MineTanBodySkin hyaluronic acid and Farmacy eye cream.

Now if I’m feeling particularly lazy I will just remove my makeup with some micellar water on a cotton round. But the majority of the time I will use an oily cleanser to remove my makeup. I find that oil-based cleansers are the best at breaking down my makeup. There are two oil-based cleansers that I currently like to use.

If my makeup isn’t super heavy or if its already worn off, then I’ll use the Laneige Cream Skin Milk Oil Cleanser. This cleanser is quite thin so I use about three to four pumps for my whole face. It just melts the makeup off my face and leaves it feeling soft and smooth after. The milky consistency is suitable for all skin types. It removes all my makeup, but I find it’s not as effective as a balm.

If I’m wearing a lot of makeup then I reach for a cleansing balm. I just find that it’ll get really oily and breakdowns stubborn mascara or eyeliner the best. I’ve used quite a few, but the one I currently own is the Day Dissolve Cleansing Balm. It has a light eucalyptus scent and doesn’t irritate my eyes. This one is cheaper than the other ones I’ve tried but just as effective. I always make sure to double cleanse when using a balm though, because my oily skin doesn’t like excess oil.

After I remove my makeup I go in with a second cleanser. If you’re unfamiliar with the double-cleanse method, the idea is to use a cleanser to remove your makeup and then a second cleanser to clean your skin. Since I have oily, acne-prone skin I find that it makes a difference to do a second cleanse. But I like to use a gentle cleanser as to not strip my face and irritate it.

The current cleanser I’m using for my second cleanse is the Kylie Skin Foaming Face Wash, which I got in a Boxycharm box. This cleanser is formulated to be gentle so it’s perfect for my second cleanse. I wouldn’t use this as my morning cleanser because I find it isn’t strong enough by itself. But after a first cleanse it just ensure that my face is clean and ready for the next steps in my routine.

I focus most of my skincare use in the morning, so in the evenings I try and use up products that I have already open. For example, the Ole Henriksen Oil Control toner is my favourite, but I have the Glow2OH Dark Spot Toner as well so I use it in the evening to try and finish it. I just don’t find it very effective but I don’t want to waste it so I use it at night. This toner has AHAs to help brighten dark spots. I find my dark spots react better to vitamin c serum, which I use in the morning. So I don’t necessarily recommend this toner, but it’s what I’m currently using.

After my toner, just like in the morning, I go in with hyaluronic acid. I finally finished that Inkey List one and I’m now using the MineTan.Body.Skin Hydra Glow Sleep Serum, which I also got in my Boxycharm. And I notice a difference using this hyaluronic acid! It gives me some hydration and makes my face feel plumper. I also will spray my face with a facial mist before applying the serum. I find that’s the best way to get results. So I’ve concluded that hyaluronic acid does work for my skin, just not The Inkey List one.

The next step in my routine is my moisturizer. I’m currently using the Murad City Skin Overnight Detox Moisturizer, which I also got in my Boxycharm. As I’ve said, I like to finish up products in my nighttime routine, so that means finishing up products that I tested from my Boxycharm. This moisturizer is pretty nice if a little on the thick side. I usually gravitate to something lighter but it doesn’t break me out and leaves me feeling hydrated so I use it!

Then I go in with my eye cream, the Farmacy Cheer Up Brightening Vitamin C Eye Cream. And you guessed it – I got this in my Boxycharm ahaha! I only use eye cream for hydration. This eye cream is supposed to help with fine lines and darkness but I haven’t noticed a difference. It doesn’t irritate my eyes so I use it to finish it up.

And then I’ll finish up with a lip balm, whichever is close by. And that’s my nighttime skincare routine! Besides my first cleanser, everything else I’m using to just to finish up. Because I focus on making sure that my skin is properly cleansed and treated in the morning, I just like to use up products in the evening. I have so many opened products and I’m making an effort to finish them up before purchasing more.

Let me know in the comments what products you guys like to use in the evening. And if you have any recommendations for me let me know, I always love trying new stuff!

xoxo

Lea

May Boxycharm 2021

Hey guys! I always love writing my Boxycharm reviews. I think because it’s always a surprise – I never know if the products are going to be good or bad. And because I take the time to test the products out I feel like I can give you guys really good reviews on the products. So let’s get into this month’s box.

A variation of Boxycharm's May box, a beauty subscription box.

The first product is the one I selected for this month. A while back Boxycharm introduced the ability to choose one product in your box. I don’t always remember to choose, but this month I picked the Murad City Skin Overnight Detox Moisturizer. It was between this moisturizer and a concealer, and I didn’t want to pick a concealer and get the wrong shade. With a combination of antioxidants and vitamin C, this moisturizer is meant to help reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles. And it’s has a thicker consistency meant for drier skin types. So this isn’t exactly the moisturizer I would necessarily pick for myself but I still like it. It’s quite thick, which is fine since it’s meant for the nighttime anyway. It has a nice, lightly citrusy scent. I like the packaging because it has a special pump so I don’t have to dig my fingers into a tub. It’s a good product, but overall I prefer purchasing moisturizers I can use both day and night instead of just at night. So I will use this up but I don’t see myself repurchasing it. Price: $74 US, $95 CAD

The next product the KAB Cosmetics Day + Night Eyeshadow Palette. I was excited to test out this product because I got the KAB Lip Oil in my March Boxycharm and I love it. The colour story is nice, but also quite similar to the Huda Beauty Desert Dusk palette (on purpose or a coincidence? 👀). I think the mattes are quite nice in the palette. They’re pigmented and blend easily on the eyes. The shimmers are hit and miss for me. They swatched beautifully. But on the eyes, the eyeshadows don’t show up much. I was using the shade ‘Sunset’ and was struggling to get the beautiful duo-chrome effect in the pan on my eyes. I tried using my finger, a brush and wetting my brush and it was all same – mediocre. The shades ‘Golden’, ‘Stella’, and ‘Luna’ worked well but all looked similar on the eyes. I haven’t tried out the purples or darker metallics yet, but so far I’m a little underwhelmed, especially considering the higher price tag. Price: $52 US

The second skincare product in this box is the Skin Inc My Daily Dose of Uplift. I love getting skincare in my box because it can be expensive. The only thing is sometimes I get products like this that are good but I wouldn’t necessarily purchase myself. This serum is an anti-ageing cocktail with collagen, coenzyme Q10 and hyaluronic meant to help smooth and firm the skin. Now at the age of 24, I’m more concerned with fighting acne than anti-ageing to be completely honest. I’ve been using it for almost two weeks now and I don’t notice a difference. I think because my skin is already pretty smooth and firm. I was looking at reviews online and everyone who liked it was 30+, so I think in a couple of years I would like this more. Price: $65 US

The next product is the Trestique Refillable Brow Pencil + Gel. I love that this product is refillable because brows are the product I go through the quickest. That being said I wouldn’t say this is my favourite brow pencil I’ve tried. The pencil shape is quite large so I have to be quite careful and precise when filling in my brows. I’m surprised but I like the gel side. Because I have thicker brows naturally, it’s a slippery slope when using a brow gel. I can easily go from groomed to a mesh if the gel is too pigmented or wet or difficult to use. I think this gel just adds the perfect amount to my brows. I like the brush because one side is longer and the other side is shorter giving me more control. I can’t testify to the hold because I don’t brush my brow hair up to create a fluffy look. Overall I see myself reaching more for the brow gel than the pencil. Price: $26 US

The final product is the Sophia + Mabelle Hydrating Hybrid lipstick, in the shade Weekend Getaway. The website has no description of this shade, but I would say this is a berry shade. The formula is described as a hybrid between lipstick and lip balm and I would say that’s pretty accurate. It has the pigmentation of a lipstick but the look and feel of a lip balm. I like that I can apply a little and get a sheer wash or apply a full swipe and get a pigmented lip. Because of the consistency, it isn’t super long-lasting but it’s comfortable on the lips. And I like the packaging, it’s easy to see the colour and the pink-tinted plastic is cool and unique. Price: $18 US (the card that came in my box says $15 but the website says $18).

The total of the box is $235. That’s a high value and I do think it’s reflective in the products in the box. Overall I’m pretty impressed by this month’s box. While there were some minor issues with some of the products, overall I see myself continuing to use all the products. Let me know in the comments what you think about the box. And if you’re subscribed to Boxycharm, did we get the same box? Curious to see what the different variations are.

xoxo

Lea

My Top 5 Face Masks for Acne Prone Skin

Hey guys! I wanted to create a new series on my blog called “My Top 5”. It’s pretty self-explanatory, but I will be sharing my top five products in a certain category. I already shared my top 5 luxury products and decided to continue the concept. Today I will be sharing my favourite face masks as someone with acne-prone skin. These aren’t all detoxing, pore-cleaning masks so if you have other skin types you might be able to use some of the other masks. Let’s get into it.

A collection of face masks from Garnier, Farmacy, Versed, Origins and Glow Recipe. Skincare for acne-prone skin.

My first favourite is the Garnier Clean+ Pore Purifying 2-in-1 Clay Cleanser/Mask. I’ve had this mask forever. I use it all the time and I still haven’t finished it so you will get your money’s worth. I like this mask because it dries down quickly and isn’t as aggressive as other clay masks. I can leave this on for 5-10 minutes and my face will be cleaner than using a normal cleanser but it doesn’t feel stripped. I also like using this as a spot treatment as well. I put a bit of the mask on a zit and leave it overnight. And it’s from the drugstore so it’s affordable.

If I have some series breakouts going on, then I reach for the Origins Out of Trouble 10 Minute Mask to Rescue Problem Skin. If you have dry skin stay away from this mask because it helps dry out all my pimples when they’re rearing their ugly heads. Also, like the same suggests I only have to wear it for 10 minutes to get the benefits, but if my face is really freaking out I’ll leave it on longer. Thanks to my friend for sharing this mask with me because I love it and as long as I have acne I’ll be using this mask.

Now after the breakouts subside I like using the Glow Recipe Watermelon + AHA Glow Sleeping Mask. This mask has active ingredients that not only hydrate my skin after berating it with drying product, but it helps reduce the appearance of dark spots. I scar very easily on my skin so I like using this mask to help reduce those scars. But it’s not an abrasive mask, it feels quite soft on the skin so if you have dry skin I think you’ll like this as well.

While I do have oily skin, I do have some dry moments. That’s when I like to use the Versed Look Alive Hydrating Plumping Mask. Unlike a lot of hydrating masks, this Versed mask has a gel-like consistency that provides hydration without clogging my pores. It has a cooling sensation as well, which is great if my skin is ever feeling irritating. The packaging is quite deceptive. It seems like there isn’t a lot but it’s only one fluid oz. less than the Origins mask. And it’s available at Shoppers!

The final mask to round out my top five is the Farmacy Honey Potion Renewing Antioxidant Hydration Mask. I think calling this mask ‘renewing’ is quite accurate. If my face is feeling congested but not necessarily breaking out this is the mask I reach for. The mask starts as a thick yellow but as I rub it into my face it turns white and it gets warm and tingly on the face. After I wash it off my skin feels cleaner and hydrated at the same time. And the mask smells delicious, just like honey!

And those are my top five face masks. Let me know in the comments what your favourite masks are. And also let me know what category you would like to see next, it can be skincare or makeup or whatever you want to see!

xoxo

Lea

Product Empties May 2021

Hey guys! Today we’re back with another round of product empties. I love doing these posts because I feel like I give the best reviews after using up a product. Lots of skincare and some haircare in today’s trash pile, so let’s get into it.

A collection of empty makeup, skincare and hair products.

First, we have L’Occitane Almond Delightful Body Balm. Almond is one of my favourite scents and I heard good things about the almond range from L’Occitane so I picked this one up. This stuff is thick. It was perfect during the winter months when my skin was drier. I prefer something slightly lighter because it’s less work to rub it into the skin. I would consider buying another product within their almond range because I do enjoy the scent. If you have dry skin I would recommend this one. It is on the higher end price-wise, just something to note.

The next product is a deluxe sample of the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm. I like to use cleansing balms if I am wearing a full face of makeup – full-coverage foundation, liquid liner, glitter, etc. you get the point. This balm did a good job of breaking down all the stubborn makeup and leaving my face clean and ready for my second cleanser. I would consider repurchasing, but I decided to get the Versed cleansing balm instead. It’s almost half the price and available at Shoppers!

Another sample I had was the Biossance Squalane + Peptide Eye Gel. This eye gel is supposed to reduce puffiness and dark circles. Honestly, I didn’t notice much of a difference. I’ve said this before and I’ll say this again: I don’t think eye creams do much besides hydration. I do have to be careful because I find some eye creams can irritate my under eyes, which makes. After all, the skin is thinner under the eyes. So while the eye cream gets points for not irritating my under eyes, I didn’t notice a difference in puffiness and dark circles. I don’t think you need to buy this eye cream and I wouldn’t repurchase it.

The one makeup product I have is the Laura Geller LashBOSS Bold Mascara, which seems to have been discontinued since I’ve received it in my Boxycharm. This is fine by me because this mascara was mediocre. I don’t remember my thoughts on it because I didn’t reach for it often. It didn’t give me more volume or length so that’s why I didn’t use it. I’m getting rid of it because the last time I used the mascara it flaked on me and it hadn’t done that before, so I took that as a sign that it was done.

My first haircare empty is the Briogeo Farewell Frizz Blow Dry Perfection Heat Protectant Cream. If you watched my curly hair routine then you would know that I like to use this and a Living Proof Leave-In product as my heat protectant on days that I blow dry my hair. And I have to be honest that I like the Living Proof product more. I like the smell of this Briogeo cream. But I find that it weighs my hair down more and my curls never look as nice when I use the Briogeo cream. I’m not saying it’s bad necessarily. It’s great considering there are so few sulphate and silicone-free heat protectants on the market. But I prefer Living Proof’s heat protectant more.

The other two empties I have are the Briogeo deep conditioners: the Be Gentle, Be Kind Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture Superfoods Hair Mask and the Don’t Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Hair Mask (not pictured). Of the two I would say the Be Gentle, Be Kind is my favourite. I just don’t find the Don’t Despair, Despair mask to be hydrating enough. I don’t notice a difference when I use it. This is funny because I love the honey version of that mask. But even the Be Gentle, Be Kind is okay. I’m still on the hunt for the mask that will make my hair softer and smoother after using it. Please leave your suggestions for hair masks in the comments.

This product is slightly covered up in the photo, but the next product is a deluxe sample of the Biossance Squalane + Omega Repair Cream. This is a pretty thick cream so I didn’t want to use it on my face. I used it on my body instead. I don’t have any complaints. It did the job of moisturizing my skin. But I can’t necessarily recommend it since I don’t know what it would be like on the face.

I know a lot of people like The Inkey List Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Serum but I didn’t notice a difference while using it. I would pause and resume using the serum and I didn’t notice a difference. I have another hyaluronic acid serum that I got in my Boxycharm and I do notice a difference when I use that one. Maybe if you have dry skin you’ll notice a difference. But this is a pass for me guys.

A product I loved is the OLEHENRIKSEN Truth Juice Daily Cleanser. This is a great morning cleanser. The citrus scent just wakes me up. This leaves my skin feeling clean and smooth without stripping my skin. But it’s strong enough for my acne-prone skin. If you have normal or oily skin then I would recommend checking it out. I decided to not repurchase and tried a new cleanser, the Youth to the People one I got during the Sephora sale.

The next product is the Farmacy Daily Greens Oil-Free Gel Moisturizer with Moringa and Papaya. This moisturizer is for all my oily skin friends. My brother loves this moisturizer. He was using it behind my back and when I found out I told him to buy it himself. He said it was too expensive (but he’ll steal it from me, brothers 🙄). This is a lightweight gel that gives the perfect level of hydration for oily skin. Also, I feel like there is tea tree oil in this because it smells similar, but I can’t find it on the ingredient list so it must be something similar. Overall a good moisturizer. I have others I want to use up but I would consider repurchasing this one.

I finished my prescription acne cream recently and it’s $200 without insurance so I won’t be repurchasing it. 😭 So instead I decided to try the Benzagel Acne Gel. There are different – Differn XP is adapalene (retinoid) whereas Benzagel is benzoyl peroxide. I used benzoyl peroxide as a teen (I used Proactiv) and it was fine. From my research, it seems that the only difference is that adapalene is only available with a prescription but anyone can get a benzoyl peroxide cream. I just use this as a spot treatment. I find it’s too strong to use all over the skin. It does a good job of helping clear up my acne so I’ll continue to use Benzagel.

The final product is the Origins GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream to Brighten and Depuff. I’ve already explained my grips with eye creams in general. This one has a slight orange tint which I guess helped with the look of darkness. I will say that this took a while to sink into the skin. So I would have to wait for it to sink into the skin otherwise my makeup wouldn’t look right. It’s not bad, but I have other opened eye creams that I will be using next.

And that is a very long product empties post. I hope this was helpful for you guys. Let me know in the comments what products you’ve finished lately!

xoxo

Lea

Sephora Haul UPDATE April 2021

Hey guys! Today I will be giving you an update on the products that I purchased during the Sephora sale. I took my time to test out the products to give you guys a good review on each of the products. So let’s get into it.

A Sephora haul including Summer Friday body lotion, Youth to the People cleanser, Fenty Beauty foundation, Tower28 lip gloss, Rare Beauty blush, Supergoop sunscreen and Replica perfume.

The first product is the Youth to the People Superfood Antioxidant Cleanser. It took me a while to start using this cleanser because I was testing out other skincare products. It’s useful to introduce new skincare products one at a time in case a product causes irritation or breakouts. But since starting this cleanser I haven’t had any issues. My skin has been pretty clear lately and I haven’t had any breakouts since starting using this cleanser. The real test will be when I get my period because my acne is mainly hormonal-based. Overall it doesn’t leave my skin feeling stripped or tight. And I like the scent, it reminds me of a forest. It’s hard to review cleansers but this Youth to the People one has been good so far.

The next product is the Supergoop Unseen Sunscreen. This wasn’t like I expected. It has a silicone feel to it, similar to a primer. So it’s easy to apply and wears beautifully under makeup. It doesn’t break me out and it protected me from the sun. My only issue is that because of the consistency you can only apply so much to your face. I think it’s fine for everyday use or if I’m not in direct sunlight. But I wouldn’t feel like I’m using enough and getting enough protection if I was say at the beach in full sunlight. So while I will continue to use this, I feel like I need to continue my hunt for a good sunscreen.

The most disappointing product is the Summer Fridays Summer Skin Nourishing Body Lotion. If you read my wish list post you might remember that I read reviews saying this smells like Play-doh. And I have to agree with the reviews. It doesn’t have the saltiness associated with Play-doh but I will say that this body lotion has a plastic-like smell to it. I could get over it except for the fact that it does linger on the skin. So I’m not a huge fan. We’re currently in lockdown so I’m unsure how I will return this product but I am considering returning it. Overall I wouldn’t recommend this body lotion because the scent isn’t great and the formula isn’t so amazing to make it worth using.

The next product is the Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush in the shade Love. I do really like this blush but it’s a little difficult to use. It’s extremely pigmented and dries down matte so I have to work quickly to blend it out. For that reason, I prefer to apply it to the back of my hand and use a brush to apply it to my cheeks. Once it’s on my face it sets down nicely and doesn’t budge. And I like this shade, it gives me a sun-kissed look. I see myself using this blush a lot this summer. If you’re new to using cream blushes I would be careful because it’s not the most user-friendly formula. But if you’re a makeup pro you won’t have any issues.

I was quite unsure about the Tower28 ShineOn Milky Lip Jelly Gloss at first. When I first applied it I had just outlined my lips with a lip liner. Because it’s such a sheer lip gloss formula I was able to see the lip liner underneath. Because of that, I like to wear this gloss on its own or over top of lipstick. The lip gloss is also a lot creamier compared to other lip gloss formulas. It looks more like an oil than a shiny gloss. I like the shade a lot and will continue to use it. But I wouldn’t say it’s my favourite gloss I’ve ever used.

The next product is the Replica By The Fireplace perfume. I’ll be honest and I haven’t used this because it’s such a fall/winter scent. I probably could have waited until the next sale to get the perfume but oh well I bought it now. I still love the scent and it does last pretty well on my skin. This is impressive because I don’t find perfumes often last long on me. Overall I like this scent and would recommend you guys smell it if you like spicy, warm scents.

The final product is the Fenty Beauty Eaze Drop Blurring Skin Tint. I did a full in-depth review on the Skin Tint so I would recommend checking out that blog post if you haven’t already.

And that’s it for my Sephora Sale haul update! I hope this was helpful for you guys. If you have tried any of these products let me know in the comments if you agree with my thoughts. I love chatting about makeup! 🙂

xoxo

Lea