Review: Vichy - Mineral 89 Skincare Collection*

The Vichy Mineral 89 Skin Booster has been so good to me over the past year that I've been sharing this with my coworkers and friends anytime I have an extra sample give out. I know that when I give it to them, they will become in love with it as well thereby leading them to go out and repurchase it. It's true! I just got one of my coworkers addicted to it and she even said that it is better than some of the higher end stuff she's tried, and that speaks volumes as you can buy this at your drugstore and at a super reasonable price! If you're interested in learning all about the product, you can read about it on my previous post or on their site Vichy Mineral 89 Fortifying and Hydrating Daily Skin Booster with Hyaluronic Acid  which retails for $39.95/50mL. 

I was super excited to learn that they added a new product targeting eyes to the Mineral 89 line, which is called the Vichy Mineral 89 Eye Repairing Fortifier with Prue Caffeine and Hyaluronic Acid. It retails for $34.95 and you get 15mL. To use, I apply one pump (yes you read correctly, one pump) on my fourth finger and then dot it on both my eyes in the eye bag region and gently massage and disperse the product around my eyes. It contains the same lightweight texture that is non greasy and cooling. 

Did you know that it is called Mineral89 because it contains 89% Vichy Thermal Water in its formulation in conjunction with hyaluronic acid (to hydrate) and pure caffeine to depuff, brighten and decrease the look of dark circles. 

The formulation is also hypoallergenic, free of parabens, fragrance, alcohol, silicone and oils, which is suitable for those with sensitive skin.

I can't wait to share this with my friends and coworkers again, I know they will love it as much as I do! 

Until next time, XO - M.

*products were sent to me for consideration, all opinions are my own.

Giveaway: Benefit Cosmetics - Brow Superstars!*

Benefit Cosmetics sure makes the cutest gift sets for the holiday season! I mean normally they're packaging is already beautiful, but their holiday stuff is always the perfect time to try various items at an amazing price point! The Benefit Brow Superstars! set is no exception, you get 6 full-sized items specifically tailored to help you deliver the best brows you can possibly attain at home for $79 canadian (right now it is on sale for $66 on sephora! woo!)

I am in shade 4, and to be honest I have a use for each and every item provided in the kit! I don't do my brows the same everyday, I mean okay I use the brow gel everyday and the 24-hour brow setter, but sometimes I do alternate between the Goof Proof Brow Pencil, Ka-Brow and Precise, My Brow depending on how strong of a brow I'd like. What I am really trying to say that this kit is truly customizable to what type of brow routine you would like. 

You can even house the products in the stand it comes in and it'll look beautiful on your vanity!

The lovely team at Benefit Cosmetics Canada has offered two of my readers a chance to win their very own Brow Superstars! set!! The two shades available are shades 2 and 4 - the winner will get the chance to pick between the two shades. 

1. Please do not follow just to unfollow on Instagram, it's unkind and dishonest! I will be checking if you have followed both accounts (mine @mirandachan and @benefitcanada) when the winner is selected. 
2. Giveaway is open to Canadian Residents Only! 
3. Winners have 48 hours to respond to my notification e-mail, failure to do so will result in me selecting a new winner (this is to just keep the ball rolling and not hold-up the process)
4. Prize pack is not mailed out by me, but I will be facilitating with the process with the winner.
Good Luck everyone!

Until next time, XO - M.
*prize pack is provided by Benefit Cosmetics Canada

Review & Tutorial: AVON x THE FACE SHOP*

Breaking New: the AVON x THE FACE SHOP is now live and I am super excited. This collaboration was a total shock to me and I'm not mad at it. I am so excited in fact because this means that it is a great platform for both companies to be able to showcase each others products. I'm sure alot of AVON clients may not have heard of THE FACE SHOP before, and now they can get introduced to it which is fantastic! 

I was set a few items from their collection to try! First is the skinscare set which features generous deluxe sizes of four different products to try: 
The Therapy Oil Blending Cream
Rice Water Bright Foaming Cleanser
Dr Belmur Cica Recovery Cream 
Veilment Natural Spa Black Rose Body Scrub and Cleanser 

Next, I received a box of make-up items that features products to create a nice complexion:
1. Ink Lasting Cushion Foundation - love this cushion foundation, it makes it look like second skin, a better version of me. It has a natural matte finish that is cooling on application and dries down fairly quickly and does not dry tacky. 

2. Moisture Cushion Blush - great applicator, the cushion pad itself is smaller so it can really focus on just the cheeks. It gives a natural flush to the cheeks and lasts all day.

3. Ink Lasting Primer - a gel primer that helps to minimize pores and make your makeup last all day. It is said to brighten your skin and smooth uneven texture. I liked how lightweight this was on the skin and how it dried down quick meaning no wait time for the makeup application. It did smooth out the pores on my nose/cheek area. 

4. Flat Velvet Lipstick - as the name indicates this is a velvet matte lipstick. Feels lightweight on the lips and is opaque and only requires one swipe. 

Below is all the products in action (plus my own black liner and brows)

Until next time, XO - M.

*products were sent to me for consideration, all opinions are my own. 

Swatch: OPI x Hello Kitty (OPI Holiday 2019 Collection)*

This holiday, OPI is collaborating with Hello Kitty once again to bring to you a beautiful line of 15 polishes as well as SUPER adorable gift sets that you must check out. I grew up LOVING Hello Kitty and that love never did quite go away with age - haha! my friends could definitely attest to that. 

I am super excited about this collection and have them all swatched below for you. In addition, I also showed you how you could easily do some polish layering to use the glitter top coats. I definitely would love to know which ones are your favorite shades!

Left to Right:
Glitter to My Heart - clear base with white and silver glitter chunks throughout
Let's Be Friends! - a creamy pastel baby pink
A Hush of Blush -  baby pink pearl finish
Born to Sparkle - clear base with rose gold glitter reflects
Let's Celebrate! - hot pink clear polish with iridescent glitter throughout
All About the Bows - bright pink toned red - cream base
Glitter All The Way - true gold glitter of different sizes throughout
Many Celebrations To Go! - gold pearl polish

Left to Right:
Isn't She Iconic! - gunmetal silver pearl finish
Let Love Sparkle - baby blue pearl finish with glitter reflects
Pile on the Sprinkles - light purple clear based with glitter reflects
Hello Pretty - cream based eggplant purple
My Favorite Gal Pal - dark navy blue, cream based
A Kiss on the Chic - the perfect holiday red
Dream in Glitter - clear base with red glitter - perfect to layer with A Kiss on The Chic
Below are two of the little gift sets I received that I think is super adorable to give to any Hello Kitty fan, especially the little one in your life even as an ornament to hang on the tree with a mini baby pink polish! 

My favorites from this collection include: A Hush of Blush, All About the Bows, My Favorite Gal Pal 

Until next time, XO - M.

*products were sent to me for review, all opinions are my own.

Holiday Gifting with Real Techniques and Ecotools*

If you are looking at holiday gifting ideas for the makeup lover in your life may I suggest these beauties from Real Techniques and EcoTools? This is perfect for any type of make-up lover - from beginner who is looking for some high quality makeup application items and essentials, to the well-versed make-up user who already has a kit built out but just wants some new brushes, because who can pass up some new brushes?! 

I have been a user of Real Technique brushes for years - I want to say I've been using it for 8 years? I was such a huge fan I even met the PIXIWOO sisters (creators) at IMATS in Toronto and Nicole and I chatted about Suits, the TV show. They are super down to earth and are make-up artists with a YouTube Channel that started their own make-up brush/tools brand. 

This set, the Everyday Essentials Makeup Brush Set has everything you will need to get your basics done:
1. The RT400 Blush brush can be used for loose powders (powder foundation/setting powders/blush/bronzer)
2. RT 402 Setting can be used for contour, highlight 
3. RT 300 - can be used for shadow application and concealer blending 
4. RT 200 Expert Face is used for liquid product as the bristels are quite dense, so I like to use it for liquid foundation or cream blush/bronzer. 
5. Miracle Complexion Sponge is a great beauty sponge to help ensure all your makeup is blended.

Next is the EcoTools Total Perfecting Blender - it is an amazing blender with this really straight edge as you can see which is GREAT for forming lines on the nose for your contour or to create a contour line on the cheekbones. I LOVE this sponge and as you can see I'm again, already a user of this product as well. I didn't want to open the one I because I want to save it for use later on, I still have this one that is in good condition. 

These gifts are perfect for gifting this holiday season, or just even for a gift to yourself! 

I am a huge fan of both brands and you will honestly not regret buying these.

Until next time, XO - M

*products were sent to me for consideration, all opinions are my own.

Review: Radiant Skin Essentials with OLEHENRIKSEN*

OLE HENRIKSEN... OLE HENRIKSEN...OLE HENRIKSEN... honestly, where have you been all my life. I have been using this trio lately and my god, my skin has never looked or felt better. I can't even begin to describe it. It looks plump (in a youthful way) like I just got a facial and had a nice hour long TLC treatment done to it and there's life put back into it. The uneven-ness is gone in terms of color patchiness, or discoloration? I honestly believe that it is the use of these three products that has transformed my skin to its current state. I actually feel comfortable going out without foundation, just with a bit of concealer and blush and my brows. 

Review: Multi-Masking with Jowaé*

Jowaé recently launched 3 new masks to their skincare line and you can read all about them here. They retail for $24 Cad each and contain 50mL of product are made with 96-98% ingredients that are of natural origin.

Swatch: Zoya - Twinkling (Holiday 2019)*

For this year's Holiday launch, Zoya has released its Twinkling Collection completed with 12 shades in a variety of finishes that retails for $10 usd a bottle. I have these beautiful babies swatched below so I'd love to know which ones are your favorite shades! 

I am always so surprised to see how some of these polishes swatch as what I normally would not gravitate to, or would think look a certain way when swatched always surprises me and looks completely different - for example the shade Jett below, I thought would be a silver top coat - but it ended up being a fully opaque silver shade with glitter running through it and dries down matte. Such a wonderful surprise, I love it!

Swatched from left to right we have:
Jett - frosted silver with glitter (metallic) that dries to a matte
Alessia - icy blue with silver glitter (metallic)
Jen - sapphire blue (pearl)
Sedona - deep burgundy (pearl)
Gabi - dark rich eggplant purle (cream)
Rosa - a bright fuschia pink  (pearl)

Swatched from left to right:
Kaede -gold metallic fleck with a holo foil - works great as an overlay. 
Enza - beige macadamia (cream)
Steph - pastel ballet baby pink (cream)
Mai - rosewood (cream)
Tieran - charcoal grey (cream)
Tanya - festive holiday red (cream)

The shades I really loved this time include: Jett, Alessia, Gabi, Tanya and Tieran. 

All of the polishes are swatched with two coat to deliver that even finish.

Until next time, XO - M.

*products were sent to me for consideration, all opinions are my own. 

Review: JOICO - JOIFULL Haircare Collection*

Postpartum hair loss, it's a real thing that I struggle with... and with my already pre-existing thin hair, the amount of hair that I'm losing from postpartum as well as everyday stress is really taking a toll on me. As a result, I find myself willing to try any type of hair product that promises hair growth, volume or both? Let me know if you ever find a product that does that!

I was recently fortunate enough to be sent the brand new Joifull collection by Joico to test out which features the: 1. Volumizing Shampoo 2. Volumizing Conditioner and 3. Volumizing Styler. These products are said to give you big, bouncy and volumizing hair with a styler that will not leave your hair feeling crunchy or sticky.

Review: Live Clean Hand Washes (Holiday 2019)*

I have been a huge fan of Live Clean products as you may probably know if you are a follower of my blog and one of the launches that I most look forward to yearly is the Holiday series. Last year, I was obsessed with their Vanilla Peppermint liquid hand soap and stocked up so I could use it throughout the year. I made it up to the summer time - haha! This year I'll know better and prepare myself better! In addition to their Holiday liquid hand soap line up (which includes Holly Berry, Vanilla Peppermint and Gingerbread Latte), they have launched two new scents in a foaming hand wash formula. 

The two new scents are Frosted Apple and Fresh Snow
Frosted Apple - I love apple scented products and this is more of a fall apple scent vs. a crisp apple scent - he has the warmer notes vs. the light and airiness. I still love this and will use it first before the Fresh Snow which is more Holiday to me. 
Fresh Snow is what you expect it to be, the moment you open your front door and the air is cold and crisp and a fresh layer of snow has fallen. LOVE! It's giving me all sorts of Winter vibes and I am living for it! 

I have seen these in the shelf of Walmart and have seen them online at at right under or around the $5 price point. I will definitely be buying the Vanilla Peppermint and 1-2 more of the Fresh Snow and Frosted Apple this year to last me a few more months! 

Until next time, XO - M.

*products were sent to me for consideration, all opinions are my own.

Review - Holiday Gift Ideas from Scentuals*

When thinking of gifting during the Holiday Season, I was graciously sent some products from Scentuals to consider. I have previously reviewed their products before, if you're interested in reading about it - I have linked it over here. This time I was sent the Sleep Well set as well as a few items from their Vanilla Mint Holiday line. 

The Sleep Well Set retails for $45.50 canadian and contains items to help you relax, unwind and drift to sleep. It contains a pillow & room mist, hand & body lotion and aromatherapy roll-on. It is 100% natural, paraben, and phthalate free with organic aloe, organic argan oil and pure essential oils. I know that this would be perfect for my son's daycare teacher! After looking after 5 children each per day, I'm sure this would help them with the R&R! 

You can definitely use all these simultaneously, use the mist right before bed while you apply the hand and body lotion and then roll your pressure points and then lie down and relax. 

My favorite of the Holiday launches is their Vanilla Mint series. I was kindly sent the Vanilla Mint Handsoap ($11.95 cad) and Vanilla Mint Hydrating Hand and Body Lotion ($15.95 cad)

The soap is made from 100% natural, gentle, plant derived cleansers that cleanse your hands without drying them out. I keep this in my son's washroom so that he can use a natural product to cleanse his hands as opposed to alot of scented soaps out there that may contain alcohol. It contains Aloe and organic Argan oil.

The hand and body lotion is made with 100% natural ingredients as well, with organic Argan oil and Avocado oil which is great for hydration and promoting healthy smooth skin. 

I really love the subtle vanilla, peppermint, spearmint like scent - it's mildly sweet without being too overwhelming from either the sweet or peppermint side.

Of the two, which are you interested in trying?

Until next time, XO - M.

*products were sent for consideration, all opinions are my own.

Review: New products from Design.ME Hair (Fall 2019)*

Design.ME Hair has recently sent me three brand new items to try and man, I am hooked on two of them! The items sent over to try from left to right in the image above include:

GLOSS me ($24cad)
Alright, I normally loathe hair serums but man this stuff is good. It is lightweight, non-greasy in the sense that you do not look like you haven't washed your hair in a few days. It smells amazing, and absorbs quickly. It is formulated with oils, proteins and essential fatty acids and vitamin A,C and E to help strengthen the hair. It also contains cannabis sativa seed oil, it does NOT contain THC so fear not! This is the oil that is derived from the hemp plant so that means it is legal. This product is free of sulfates, salt, paraben, gluten and is cruelty free and vegan. 

PUFF me ($22cad)
My thin lifeless hair is truly obsessed with this product. I spray it into my roots and it gives texture and volume and some extra oompf and body. The best part is that the hair is still workable, it is not too stiff or tangled feeling which is amazing. I use this also to finish off my waves and I actually get an extra day out of the curls even if I sleep in it. LOVE! This spray also has UV protection just in case you want some extra protection!

BOUNCE me ($22cad)
This product is meant for those with curls as it is targeted to give you hydration from the Argan Oil formulation. It provides frizz control, helps the strands feel soft and smooth and even offers up to 400 degrees F in heat protection.
This product is free from sulfates, salt (sodium chloride), paraben, gluten, has no artificial colors and smells divine! I can smell it through the bottle. I gave this away to my son's daycare teachers to share with them, hopefully one of the teachers with curly hair will take it home with them! I have dead straight hair so why not pass it on :)

So as you can guess the two products I am obsessed with is the hair serum (GLOSS me) and texturizing spray (PUFF me), I highly recommend these two!

Until next time, XO - M

*products were sent to me for consideration, all opinions are my own.

Review: Mary Kay Naturally™ & Skinvigorate Sonic™ Skin Care System*

New to Mary Kay is their Naturally skincare line, which is made from naturally derived ingredients. Click the link to learn more about the collection and continue reading below for my thoughts on the products

We all love a good cleanser that helps to rid your face of impurities, grease and dirt without making it feel squeaky clean and almost stripping. This is a creamy cleanser that leaves your skin feeling hydrated and refreshed. 

While I am not used to using a moisturizer in stick form, I use this more as a targeted moisturizing component. I apply it to my eczema flare-ups on my hand, or on dry patches of my skin and it helps to create a non-greasy barrier. 

This light-weight and fast absorbing oil is best used with the facial massager in my opinion! IT does not contain any silicone, mineral oil or alcohol so this is just the ultimate moisturizer for your face that leaves you feeling hydrated. 

I am slowly starting to see my exfoliating powders come to the market vs the traditional style that is almost like a paste. You can use this however you wish, make your own exfoliating cocktail by mixing it with water, cleanser or even the facial oil. If you mix it with the cleanser you're doing two steps in one to save you some time. It gently exfoliates your skin as the granules aren't too big and helps to buff away any dullness.

Review: Veriphy Skincare*

A brand new line of skincare that has been introduced to me recently is called Veriphy. The company was created in 2018 and is 98% natural, 100% cruelty free with no animal testing done at all! They are Canadian and proud of it - their products are developed and manufactured in Canada using sustainable packaging and practices. Bonus, it is a women-founded and led company and supports Women in STEM (fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). 

The power behind the brand is  PhytoSpherix® (phytoglycogen), a 100% plant-based form of glycogen that helps to reveal brighter, silkier, smoother and a revitalized complexion. It helps your skin to produce elastin and collagen thereby giving you back that youthful plump-ness to the skin. All of their products contain this ingredient in addition to others, but this is absolutely the star of their products. 

Currently, they have three products to their range: 
Described as "An AHA serum with a powerful blend of Lactic Acid and PhytoSpherix® (phytoglycogen) that exfoliates the skin, revealing a fresh and revitalized complexion. Arnica and Calendula Extracts help to calm and soothe the skin, making this product suitable for all skin types." 

Veriphy 20/20 Eye Cream ($82 cad/15mL)
The site describes this product as "This firming and smoothing eye cream uses the power of PhytoSpherix® and Peptides to firm and hydrate the eye area. Niacinamide and Cucumber Extract work to visibly reduce the appearance of dark circles and puffiness". 

On their site, the product is described as "A luxurious moisturizer that harnesses the power of PhytoSpherix® and Hyaluronic Acid to plump the skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Deeply hydrating without feeling heavy or greasy, leaving a soft and velvety finish." Other ingredients include Algae, Green Tea & Licorice Root Extract, to brighten and make your skin more radiant and Avocado Oil to soothe and moisturize the skin as it is high in omega-6 fatty acids. 

** It is important to note that all of the products above do not contain sulfates, parabens, mineral oil, phthalates, silicones or fragrance. **

Review: Naruko - Tea Tree Shine Blemish Control Series*

I have been an avid follower of asian skincare ever since I was a teen, to be honest it was really one of my first exposures to skincare from my mom. Growing up in Hong Kong, it was much easier and seeing what my mom used all the time that made her skin so nice also helped feed my interest in it. While I grocery shop at T&T Supermarkets, I like to sometimes wander into their skincare/beauty section and I saw this brand NARUKO that I had never heard about. As fate would have it, I had the opportunity to review some of their items a short time after! 

A few items were sent to me from the Tea Tree Shine Blemish Control Series which included:

Review: Live Clean - Super Fruit Waters Collection*

Live Clean has added two new products to their haircare collection ~ Super Fruit Waters Quenching Curls Shampoo and Conditioner. It is formulated with a certified organic blend of watermelon, papaya and aloe leaving your hair super soft and tamed. The one great thing I love about Live Clean products is that it is made with quality ingredients and on top of it all they are free of: phosphate, paraben, silicone, phthalate, DEA, SLS, and petrolatum free.

The scent is impeccable. it is refreshing and juicy. It has a very light-weight formula, I only have to use about a nickel size on the palm of my hand for my medium shoulder length hair. I use a bit more of the conditioner, about a quarter-sized and work it from the middle to the end. 

My hair did feel very hydrated after, I do not have curls so the curl-friendly portion of this product wouldn't be applicable to me. Regardless, like I said, the shampoo and conditioner left my hair feeling cleansed, hydrated and not dry nor was there any residue leftover. 

Until next time, XO - M.
*products were sent to me for consideration, all opinions are my own. 

Swatch: OPI - Good Girls Gone Plaid Collection (Fall/Winter 2019)*

This Fall/Winter collection from OPI is called Good Girls Gone Plaid. The nailpolishes retail for $13.30 canadian each and come in the following formulations: GelColor, Infinite Shine and Nail Lacquer. There are 12 shades total in this collection in a mixture of cream and shimmers that contain various shades of purple, blue, red and other pops of fall colors like orange, dark green and dusty a gorgeous pinky mauve taupe shade. 

Left to Right:
You've Got That Glas-Glow - A muted dusty nude pink (cream)
Edinburgh-er & Tatties - Brown Beige nude (cream)
Boys Be Thistle-ing at Me - Eggplant Purple with silver iridescent glitter (shimmer)
OPI Grabs The Unicorn By The Horn - Ocean Blue (cream)
Nessie Plays Hide & Sea-K - Indigo Blue with duochrome shimmer that reflects green/gold (shimmer)
Things I've Seen in Aber-Green - Olive Green (cream)

Left to Right:
Suzi Needs a Loch-Smith - pumpkin orange (cream)
Red Heads Ahead - true red (cream)
A Little Guilt Under the Kilt - ruby red with red glitter (shimmer)
Nice Set of Pipes - gray purple (cream)
Good Girls Gone Plaid - dark purple (cream)
Rub-A-Pub-Pub - dark grey (cream)

Review: CILQUE - Pillowcase*

My entire life, I had been using your traditional cotton pillowcases and really saw no need to invest in satin or silk ones, no matter how luxurious they looked, I just didn't know if it was worth the price tag. I thought they were only for aesthetic purposes vs. having actual beneficial properties. When I had the chance to try the CILQUE 100% silk pillowcases, I definitely had to say yes. I took time to educate myself on the benefits, that it helps to defy wrinkles, sleep creases and prolong blowouts. It is hypoallergenic and breathable and helps to cool you in the summer and warm you up in the winter. In addition to all those traits, you are said to get a soft and luxurious sleep. 

Review: Garnier - Whole Blends Oat Delicacy Collection*

Do you have a sensitive scalp and want to find an affordable product that works? The Garnier Whole Blends Oat Delicacy line offers a collection of products that are gentle enough and helps nourish, cleanse and hydrate. The products have a very gentle powdery soft fragrance of oat milk and rice cream, it is relaxing and doesn't overpower or overwhelm. 

Oat Delicacy Shampoo
This shampoo is a creamy formulation that lathers beautifully. You only need about a nickel size on the palm of your hand and I find that it is enough to cleanse my medium length hair. It cleanses the scalp well and doesn't leave behind any residue nor does it feel stripping. 

Oat Delicacy Conditioner
The conditioner works well to detangle the hair and smooth everything out, it has the same scent as the shampoo and I typically like to use a bit more of this product than the amount of shampoo just because I want to make sure my bleached ends get some extra nourishment.

Oat Delicacy Dry Shampoo
This dry shampoo works amazingly well to suck up and absorb any oiliness in the scalp. I spray it in the roots, let it sit for 2-3 minutes and then massage it in. It adds a bit of volume, texture while refreshing the hair. It does not leave behind a white residue (make sure you massage well) and it helps me go an extra day between washes. 

Oat Delicacy Gentle Rinse-Out Mask
Once or twice a week, I like to go for the extra hydration and treat my ends to a hair mask. I take a dollap of the mask, and massage it from mid to ends of my hair and let it sit for 5 minutes or so. I typically apply this, then wash my body and face and then rinse everything off together. This mask works wonders and I no longer purchase expensive hair masks anymore as this honestly works just as well at a fraction of the price. 

Have you tried this line from Garnier? What's your favorite Garnier hair product? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, XO - M.

*products were sent for my consideration, all opinions are my own.