Oscar Blandi Jasmine Oil Serum

I love anything that smells of jasmine so I was delighted when I came across the @OscarBlandiHair Jasmine Oil Hair Serum.
This stuff smells amazing. Just the perfect amount of scent, and guess what? The fragrance lasts and lasts in your hair! Now, I have to admit that the serum itself is oilier than a pure silicone serum but you’ll have to see if that works in your hair. I, personally, love it as a finishing touch when my hair is already done. Smoothing it on gives my hair a lovely sheen and makes it smell good.
$35 online.
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Armani Prive Eclat de Jasmine

I’ve reviewed the Armani Prive fragrance collection before and mentioned that what I loved about it was the wonderful smokiness that added a layer of mystery and uniqueness to each fragrance in the collection.

Eclat de Jasmine’s superficial distinction is the rose coloured stopper that caps the bottle.

The scent itself is the sweetest of the bunch. Wait a couple of minutes after spraying the fragrance and you’ll smell the lovely Jasmine top notes, and after about 30 minutes, the real smokiness of the scent comes through. Wait a few hours, and you’ll really start to smell an earthy patchouli mixed with a touch of bergamot and amber. I think that the Bergamot note really makes this scent a wee bit fresher than some of the other ones.

I am told that the Prive collection is hit and miss – you either love it or hate it and I am definitely in the former category. I think that people don’t like the woodsiness of the scents, which is what I particularly love about them. Note that this addition is not as smoky as the rest and has a fresh wet feeling in the opening notes that the other Prive’s don’t have and for this reason it’s worth taking another trip to the Prive counter to check this scent out.

The Prive collection can only be found in high-end department stores.

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The Inkey List Glycolic Acid Review

I’ve put this amazing toner into a spray bottle and now I’m getting so much more use out of it.  I feel like I’m not wasting any that’s left on a cotton pad, and I spray all the way out to my shoulders.  Just remember to keep your eyes closed!People keep asking me if I like the Inkey List, and the answer is YES!  It’s an awesome brand: affordable, and basic ingredients that have science behind them proving that they work.  And they’re easy to find.

I’ve added their Glycolic Acid to my skincare routine.  

My skin loves glycolic acid.  The increased exfoliation is gentle but so effective.  My skin gets visibly smoother when I add it to my skincare routine.  I actually miss it when I’m not using it because my skin just won’t be as smooth.  It’ll be a little bumpy, especially in pictures.

Instead of doing peels regularly, which is giving me a bit more dryness than I like, I’m adding the Inkey List Glycolic Acid toner to my regimen.  I let it absorb, and then follow up with a serum or just sunscreen. Sometimes I use it morning and night.  Sometimes just in the morning, depending on whether I’m using a retinol or another active at night time. Sometimes I follow up with a vitamin C.

Get it at Shoppers Drug Mart for $12.99.  

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Glossier Solution Review

When I heard that Glossier was coming out with a glycolic acid toner, I was ready for it.  I mean, this is the one product that makes or breaks my skincare routine, it’s glycolic acid.  It makes my skin so smooth and really gets rid of breakouts and scarring, which is basically what I need all the time.

So I splurged and bought this: it’s $29 on the Glossier website, which is more than what Neostrata costs at the drugstore and kind of not as convenient because I don’t need to wait until that comes to me.

The packaging and look is amazing.  I love the pretty pink plastic bottle, and it’s amazing that nobody has ever thought of putting toner in a nail remover bottle, because it prevents you from spilling the solution when you’re trying to get it on your cotton pad.

The solution itself is 10% mixture of glycolic, lactic, and gluconolactone.  The blend means that it’s not 10% glycolic acid only, and that there’s actually less than 10% glycolic acid in here.  They also say that there’s salicylic acid in there, but it’s a tiny amount: just .5%.  That’s not going to make a real difference on your skin, so the other acids are doing the work when it comes to exfoliation.

Honestly, this might work but I found it too sticky to keep using on a regular basis, and I haven’t had that experience with any other glycolic acid toner.  The sticky feeling was annoying and the finish is kind of – well, glossy – so I didn’t like using this in the morning.

You can get Glossier products from their website. Also, I didn’t know it at the time, but you can find Glossier coupon codes all over the place, so do a search either on the Internet or on Instagram. There are lots of “reps” who offer their own discount codes and these are legitimate. Often, they’re for 10% off which isn’t too shabby! Good luck!

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Fall Beauty: Beautycounter Tint Skin Foundation Swatch and Video Review

I got this tinted moisturizer almost two years ago, and I still turn to it when the weather gets a little bit cooler. Check out the full video review below – and I’m wearing it in the color Honey!

I really fluctuate between tinted moisturizer and foundation.  I definitely like the look of foundation, but in the summer, and when I have dry skin, tinted moisturizer is better.

Beautycounter’s Tint Skin Foundation hits all the marks with my skin – it helps it by moisturizing but gives it the great coverage that foundation should. The formula is dewy and pretty and the colours are wearable.

I colour I’m wearing is Honey, and you can see that it’s a nice warm tan colour.

The coverage of the foundation is light/medium, but it can be layered for more coverage.  I apply it thickly where I need it, and blend it out to be actually sheer. I’m using my sponge to get the coverage I need, but because this is a moisturizing formula, you could apply it with your fingers too.

The foundation as sodium hyaluronate which helps skin hold on to moisture.

The finish is a dewy one, especially if you’re wearing it with sunscreen, and I like to set my t-zone with powder so that it looks less dewy and lasts longer on my skin.  I also set it with a setting spray on most days and that makes a difference too.

The foundation comes in 10 colours.

$42 on Beautycounter.com.

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Cilque Silk Pillowcase

If you’re into taking care of your hair, or you follow any kind of hairstylist, salon, hair enthusiast, then you’ll have heard about Silk pillowcases.  Silk – because it’s so smooth – is much more gentle on your hair and skin than cotton.  Most people have cotton pillowcases, but even the highest thread count of cotton isn’t going to be as smooth as silk.

You can find silk pillowcases at some salons, but I got mine from Cilque.com.  Don’t be like me and just get one – it looks weird on a big bed to see one pink silk pillowcase, and the other one plain cotton. Get two pillowcases – even if nobody sleeps on the other side, it’ll look way better.

The Cilque pillowcases are 100% silk and are machine washable, so they’re really not much more work than your regular cotton pillowcases.  They really do feel nice and smooth and I had a comfortable sleep on them at night time.

Here’s me lying on my new pillowcase after a blow out.  My hair looked great in the morning, but truth be told, I’m usually a pretty sound sleeper and I can have a blow-out last a long time. 

I do feel that the silk was very gentle on my skin and not as hard as cotton.  I also wasn’t prone to getting sleep lines on my face that I can sometimes get from cotton pillowcases.

I have to say that in the case of silk pillowcases, I’m a believer.  They do feel so gentle on my hair and skin and I had a great sleep with them.

Cilque pillowcases are available at Cilque.com. They’re available in a range of colours – light pink is the one that I have.  I just wish they sold them in pairs! Prices range from $59 – $99 depending on the size and colour you get.

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The Inkey List Overview Video

If you’ve been curious about The Inkey List, which is now available at Shoppers Drug Mart, then you have to watch this.  I’ve used the Glycolic Acid, Hyaluronic Acid and the Vitamin C.  They’re all good and perfect for your skincare routine if you like to add one ingredient at a time.  The Hyaluronic Acid was great when I was using a super strong retinol, and the Glycolic Acid is moisturizing but effective.

Here’s my overview of The Inkey List!

The Inkey List is a brand from England that’s now available in Canada at Shoppers Drug Mart.  They are ingredient-focussed and so they make products that really work!  I’ve been test-driving some of them and I’ll post reviews soon, but first if you want to know about the brand what what I have, watch the video below!

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Kellett Skincare – Acne Free

The latest to come my way is a system for adult acne plagued skin which has its own needs – adults want to make sure that the products they use won’t cause wrinkles and at the same time, they want to be acne free.  If you’re over the age of 18 and suffer from adult onset acne, then this might be the system for you.

Kellett skincare goes to the next level by being free of parabens, synthetic fragrances and dyes, and any kinds of petrochemicals.

It’s formulated by a doctor (Dr. Kellett!) and so it contains the best ingredients for ideal skin care.  Dr. Kellett studied at the prestigious University of Toronto med school, and specializes in dermatology.  Her adult patients kept asking for products that could help acne and wrinkles, and so she created something herself!

The system works because it is so well thought out.  It contains a polishing cleanser – with little scrubbing beads, this is great for skin with acne, because it’s often oily and could use a good scrub to get rid of dry and dead skin cells as well as scarring.  It also contains a gel with 5% benzyl peroxide – proven to kill the germs that cause acne.  Finally, it has a sunscreen spray.  With spf 30, the spray is light and can even be used on top of makeup which makes it ideal for any kind of skin. Plus, protecting your skin from sun can ensure that scarring is minimized and skin remains clear and fresh.

You can find the system online.

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Bottega Veneta Eau de Parfum

Bottega Veneta shoes are having a moment today, and maybe that’s why I’ve reached for this beautiful fall fragrance. I have finally found my favourite fall scent and it’s from 2010.  It is quiet, yet there.  You smell it if you hug me or not at all.  The scent is warm and comforting without being sweet or smelling like a Christmas tree or pumpkin pie.  Thank goodness.

Check out the beautiful bottle.  There’s a leather collar around the bottle’s neck, and a quilted bottom that you can’t see or feel until you pick the bottle up in your hand.  All of them hark back to Bottega Veneta’s simplicity and elegance.  The fact that there are these beautiful details tied into the bottle design shows their link back to the leather goods that they are known for.

Bottega Veneta’s Eau de Parfum is amazing and the perfect scent for cool weather.  Head to your local department store and smell for yourself.

The notes are: Italian Bergamot, Pink Pepper, Indian Sambac Jasmine, leather, Oakmoss, and Patchouli.  Somehow, the scent is super warm and comforting, and what I can smell the most is the leather, oakmoss, and patchouli in the drydown.  There’s a bit of warm jasmine but not the zing of bergamot or the spiciness of pink peppercorn.

Like any good fragrance, you can smell none of those and all of those notes at the same time, which is nice.

The scent is officially a leathery floral chypre, and just like the actual fashion house, the theme is laid back luxury.  It is  sophisticated and approachable.  This scent is like wearing a cashmere scarf – only the wearer knows of soft and truly luxurious it is and the rest can only admire from afar.  That is what this scent is.  If you wear it, you can enjoy it the most because you get to smell how it changes throughout the day, and that is truly wonderful.

The scent is $145 for 50mL at Holt Renfrew and select The Bay stores.

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Impruv Your Skin

Dry skin is a problem for many of us, but it’s often difficult to find a good moisturizer that will relieve skin without causing the awful breakouts that often occur from a too-greasy yet intensely moisturizing formulation.

For those of you who need some help, we’re pleased to say that there’s a stellar product out there that might just be the best moisturizer we have every tried. Yes, it’s meant for the face, but we’ve found that it’s been working wonders on elbows and dry feet too! It is that good!

We’re talking about a cream called Impruv. It’s fragrance free and non-comedogenic. The cream has a thick consistency but when applied it goes on slightly watery instead of being oily or greasy. Apply generously at night (and it’ll still be on in the morning) or apply sparingly under your makeup. Whichever method you choose, we like this because it really stays on!

They say that the cream works by repairing the lipid barrier function of your skin, but what I found was that it creates such a strong layer of lipids on your skin that it’s hard for any moisture to leave it. They also recommend this cream for infants and I can see why – it would be amazing for diaper rash or eczema.

Available online.  $13.46.

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