Monday, August 31, 2020

make-up removing cloths vs the makeup eraser


Dupes are all too common in the makeup industry. In fact, there are entire companies whose sole purpose is to replicate and knock off high-end releases. It seems that the need to dupe pricier items doesn't begin and end with eyeshadows and highlights. Even successful makeup tools are being replicated and released. That is certainly true for The Vintage Cosmetics Company Make-Up Removing Cloths. The concept was eerily similar to the popular The Makeup Eraser, which is sold at Sephora and Ulta. Only there were three cloths instead of one for a cheaper price than the original eraser version. How did they perform? And which one worked better? Here is everything you need to know about these products.

Saturday, August 29, 2020

love it or leave it? sarah jessica parker


The world of fashion has certainly changed in recent months. Large shows have been cancelled or turned into virtual viewing experiences. New lines and releases are scarce. Oh, and masks have become an essential part of our day-to-day lives. Though masks have a practical use...they can also be stylish and fashion-forward. Celebrities and fashion lovers alike have started to match their face masks to their outfits. It is yet another way to accessorize! Which brings me to my latest love it or leave it? post. This time it is all about the fashion icon, Sarah Jessica Parker. She spent time in her SJP Collection Store in New York City not long ago....wearing a floral dress and printed face mask. Is this look a love? Or does it totally fall flat? It is time to take a closer look at Sarah Jessica Parker's late summer florals. 

Thursday, August 27, 2020

first impressions: burt's bees all aflutter multi-benefit mascara


Another day another Burt's Bees review. This is the last one. At least for a while. Since my history with the brand has been less than stellar (with every single product I've tried from Burt's Bees being underwhelming at best) chances are low that I will go out of my way to purchase something else. That being said...it is time to do a first impressions review of one last item. It is the Burt's Bees All Aflutter Multi-Benefit Mascara. Say that ten times fast! Though the name is a bit of a mouthful, it comes with some pretty impressive claims. Would it live up to them? Could it be that finally a Burt's Bees product would impress? It is time to take a closer look at the mascara and find out if it is worth adding to your drugstore shopping cart.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

fashion inspiration: end of summer style


How is it already the end of August? Somehow, time has been passing even faster than it usually does. It's hard to believe there are only a few weeks left until the official end of summer. In a different year, these last few weeks would be jam-packed with fun seasonal events. There would be concerts, trips to the CNE, and backyard barbecues with friends and family. Not this year. Everything in 2020 has either been paused or muted. Instead of allowing that to make me sad...I've decided to celebrate all things summer. While it may not include cotton candy and rollercoasters, it can include fashion. Lately, my focus has been on putting together lots of seasonally inspired ensembles. Both in real life and from the comfort of my computer. From warm golden makeup to dainty layered accessories and colourful sundresses, there are so many ways to embrace and enjoy the last days of summer. Here is one seasonal outfit to brighten your day.

style to suit every season with ninacloak


Is fashion on your mind? It should be! We are nearing the tail end of the summer season (even though that is hard to believe) and are approaching crisp morning air and sweater weather. That's right. Summer is here and fall is following closely behind. That makes right now the perfect time to think about wardrobe essentials and bold and trendy must-have items. Whether your closet is missing some important seasonal pieces or simply needs a bit of a refresh, there is no need to put off fabulous style a moment longer. Ninacloak offers a wide variety of fashionable pieces to satisfy all of your style-related needs.

Sunday, August 23, 2020

current skin care favourites (summer 2020)


Ahh, skin care. This is one area of my beauty routine that has undergone a serious transformation in the last several months. Though taking better care of my skin was always a generic goal on my New Years Resolution list...rarely did it actually happen. At best, it would be something that happened for a few days in a row and then it would be back to normal. These days? That isn't the case. I have a daily routine as well as an every few days kind of routine. Since my skin care has been a top priority for the last while, it only made sense to do a current favourites: skin care edition. These are the products that have been on my must-have list this season. Some are more expensive than others but they all work well to help me achieve my skin care goals. Here is a closer look at a few of the products making me smile.

Friday, August 21, 2020

five journal tips to help you get started


There are many benefits to keeping a journal. Whether it is a traditional spiral notebook, a bullet journal, or a journal with lists or daily prompts...it can be good for the soul. Some of the most noteworthy journaling benefits include: organizing your thoughts, working through difficult emotions, reducing stress and anxiety, feeling more in touch with yourself, and boosting creativity. Do you journal? Or have you wanted to get started? It can feel a little overwhelming to commit to something that requires regular participation. However, it doesn't have to feel like a burden or obligation. There are many ways to get started and pursue the art of journaling. Here are five tips and tricks that will help you every step of the way.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

burt's bees watermelon lip balm (review)


When it comes to Burt's Bees....this isn't a brand that is overly familiar to me. In the past, I've tried exactly two products. One was a liquid lipstick that was ultra sticky and did not dry down (read that review here) and the other was an eye mask that failed to live up to the claims (check out that review here if you missed it). Needless to say, the brand hasn't become an instant favourite. Despite hearing so many wonderful things about Burt's Bees, there still hasn't been a product that impressed me. I hoped that the Watermelon Moisturizing Lip Balm would change all that. Ever since Nivea changed their formula - which I am still unhappy about - I have been on the hunt for my new must-have balm. That has meant trying out an awful lot of products. Some have been better than others but the search continues for my holy grail item. So, how did this moisturizing lip balm perform? Here is everything you need to know about this drugstore release.

Monday, August 17, 2020

2 looks 1 palette (avon nesting beauty color palette)


Avon has some hits and some misses. Some products have been in my collection time and time again (like the Always on Point liner and their Perfect Brow Kit) but others have fallen flat. When it comes to their palettes and eyeshadow releases, these have been inconsistent. There have been items that are boldly pigmented and wonderful for travel...and others that are just so-so. Today is all about the Avon Nesting Beauty Color Palette. It is a two-tiered palette with eyeshadow shades, cheek products, and lipsticks. This is compact and has an impressive variety of product...but is it any good? Keep reading for a mini review, a video with swatches, and of course, two different makeup looks.

Saturday, August 15, 2020

affordable body shimmer products to try + mini reviews


There is no better way to celebrate the summer season than with an extra hint of sparkle. The way glitter shines in the sunlight just makes the world seem brighter and more beautiful. Thankfully, body shimmer products are easy to find. Best of all? There are countless budget friendly options available. If you are looking for some stellar shimmers that will give your next look that extra oomph...look no further. Here are a few liquid products and a couple of powder products to consider. There are options from Hard Candy, Bath & Body Works, and Avon. Keep in mind, the most expensive is $16.50 and the least expensive is $7. So whatever your budget allows....it is possible to find something spectacularly shimmery.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

inspired by: chromatica + lady gaga inspired style for real life


When it comes to music...women are dominating. Especially in the pop genre. There have been recent releases from Katy Perry, Britney Spears, and even Lady Gaga. The latter is back in an undeniable way. Her first week sales were massive and the second single from the album (a duet with another woman of pop, Ariana Grande) debuted at number one. There is no denying it. This era of Lady Gaga is a smashing success. Not only this the music amazing but so is the style and overall concept. I love the 90s, space alien, drag queen inspired, over the top outfits, accessories, makeup, and hair. Everything makes a statement. Which totally sums up Lady Gaga's aesthetic. And is one of the many reasons that she is such an enduring star. Her image is always completely out there. You never quite know what you're going to get. One red carpet appearance might have her sporting something dramatic and alien-esque and the next might show her in a floppy hat and oversized blazer. She is always keeping fans on their toes. So, today this post is dedicated to all things Chromatica.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

neutral + neon makeup look inspired by bailey sarian


When it comes to beauty gurus....there are many on my subscription list. Probably far too many. Needless to say, finding someone new to watch wasn't high up on my priority list. So when a friend of mine suggested watching Bailey Sarian, I wasn't eager to hit the play button. Until she shared what made this YouTuber unique. Not only does she create gorgeous makeup looks but she also talks about mysteries and true crime. As someone who has watched every single episode of Forensic Files (it is an addiction, for real) this was definitely up my alley. I loved the creativity involved. When that same friend sent me screenshots of a gorgeous neon-inspired makeup look from Bailey, this was immediately something I wanted to try for myself. Could I re-create it? Would it look similar at all? Here is my attempt at this neutral and neon makeup look.

Sunday, August 9, 2020

rank + review: jaclyn hill makeup products


Jaclyn Hill is no stranger to controversy. Many of her beauty releases have been riddled with issues. (Anyone remember the whole fuzzy lipstick fiasco?) Despite that...there are four Jaclyn Hill related products in my makeup collection. Three are collaborations with Morphe and one is a collaboration with Becca. Though I have been curious about Jaclyn's own line, there hasn't been anything that seemed like a must-have. Maybe one day! Until then, my focus is on using and enjoying the Jaclyn Hill makeup already in my possession. Maybe you've been wondering what these releases are actually like. Or need the inspiration to use something in your current makeup collection. At any rate...it is time to take a closer look at these ultra popular Jaclyn Hill releases. Here they are, ranked and reviewed.

Friday, August 7, 2020

beginner series: choosing an eyeshadow palette


Are you new to makeup? Then the word palette might be a little bit scary. Eyeshadow trios or quads may be more in your comfort zone. Take a deep breath. You can find the perfect palette for wherever you are in your makeup journey. It doesn't matter if you are brand spanking new, still learning, a total pro, or somewhere in between. Finding an eyeshadow palette that gives you everything you need simply requires additional thought and care. Here are some effective tools to help you choose a palette that suits your needs and current skill level.

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

why i reordered the emily edit (the needs) palette


There are some makeup items in my collection that get used more than others. My most used? The Needs palette from The Emily Edit collection. For those of you who missed the initial launch, Emily Eddington aka Emily Noel on YouTube teamed up with Revolution at the end of 2018. There were two items in the collaboration: The Needs palette and The Wants palette. The Needs was all about those everyday essentials where The Wants palette was loaded with lots of colourful eyeshadows. (Take a peek at that palette and a full review here.) All in all, it was a fabulous selection of products. Ones that I continue to go back to time and time again. Though I have not been buying new makeup products lately and been dedicated to using more of what is in my collection....it was time for a re-stock. As I mentioned, my original The Needs palette has been around since 2018 and I have used it almost every single day. So, I went on the Revolution Makeup website and ordered two more palettes. They were super affordable and on sale as well, so with shipping, both palettes cost a mere $25 CDN.

Monday, August 3, 2020

shop my stash: abh x alyssa edwards palette


What is old is new again. At least when it comes to my makeup collection. Normally, this time of year is spent splurging on shiny new items from Sephora or adding exciting releases from the drugstore to my beauty room. These days? I am doing everything in my power to cut back. To step back from the lure of spending and focus on enjoying more of what I have. This is something I am working on in every aspect of my life. What caused this shift? For a few months, I was at home. All the time. I rarely left the house except to buy groceries. COVID-19 changed everything in an instant. There were no more trips to the shopping mall or cute outfits to buy for special events. There weren't any concerts to attend or dinners with friends to enjoy. It made me re-prioritize my spending....but it also made me realize how blessed I am to have so many wonderful things.

My home has shelves full of books. Drawers full of eyeshadow palettes. Movies, DVD sets, crafting supplies, and notebooks. I am so lucky. And yet, in the past, I have always been looking for more, more, more. This isn't to say I will never buy anything new again. More that I am trying to be thoughtful. I am trying to really use and enjoy the incredible things I am grateful to have. Which is why you will see some different kinds of posts on here. (You may have already noticed this shift!) Yes, there will still be lots of reviews but there will also be shop my stash posts, revisited reviews, #FOTD style posts, and so on. My goal is to appreciate every single item in my current makeup collection. On that note! Here is an updated review and a makeup look featuring the Anastasia Beverly Hills x Alyssa Edwards eyeshadow palette.

Saturday, August 1, 2020

review: china glaze nail polish (VII)


China Glaze and I have had a bit of a rocky relationship. In the past, there were nail polishes from the brand that really impressed me. Then this past fall, I purchased a neon yellow shade that looked beautiful in the bottle but was without a doubt, the worst nail polish I had ever used. By a country mile. It took more than fifteen coats to build up the colour and it chipped the very next day. (You can read all about that experience here.) Despite that...the shade VII looked absolutely beautiful. The rich plum-maroon shade was enchanting, dramatic, and right up my alley. I had to try it. Did it work? Or was it another disappointment? Here is everything you need to know about this China Glaze nail polish.