Tuesday, 31 January 2017

2016 Makeup Faves: Lip Colour

Hi, everyone! Phewf- here I am getting one more 2016 Faves post in before the end of January! I regret the delay of this series (and of my blog posts in general, of late), but the lag has mostly been for positive reasons. Aside from a nasty cold I've had over the last few days that has made it difficult to even focus on the computer screen (ugh), January has been a month of growth and committment for me. I've been doing yoga daily (thanks to the amazing Yoga with Adriene's Yoga Revolution series) and have also adjusted my diet a bit, such that I'm cooking much more often. For some, adding a bit of exercise and cooking might not throw off their other activities, for but me, these have been a significant enough change that blogging has unfortunately, though consciously, taken a temporary back seat. But as these positive changes are becoming more ingrained and routine, I'm gradually getting back into the blogging groove. I have lots of amazing goodies to share with you all, so I can't wait! 

Ok, explanation aside- let's delve into some amazing lip colour! If you recall from my Complexion and Eyes posts, the criteria for my Best of 2016 series is that it must be a product that I discovered and used for the first time last year. Some were new releases in 2016, and others were just new to me, but they had to be products that entered my stash last year. For most people, that would leave a small, reasonable list of options, but for me (a card carrying lipstick addict), it proved to be a challenge. So, in true Vibrant Beauty style, by Lip Colour Faves list contains 16 (count 'em, 16!) lovely products. 

I've arranged this generous group by colour family and have included photos of me wearing them wherever possible- arm swatches are good, but I find that full-face shots give you the best idea of the product. I apologize that some photos are clearer than others (I have the worst time transferring photos from my phone to my laptop- the quality always diminishes in this process- is it an Apple to PC issue?)- but I hope that the photos are still helpful for you! 

The Soft Peaches and Pinks

MAC Satin Lipstick in Sushi Kiss
This shade really surprised me! Pastel peaches rarely look flattering on me, but something in the tone and finish of this one was just so pretty, especially in summertime with a colourful eye! It looks particularly lovely slightly sheered out. Plus, it was part of the Good Luck Trolls collection and has the most fun, colourful packaging. Win-win! 

MAC Satin Lipstick in Sushi Kiss

MAC Lustre Lipstick in Luna Lustre
It's no secret that I was obsessed with the MAC Star Trek collection and this lipstick was such a treasure! It's a lovely light-to-mid-tone warm pink with the most beautiful golden shimmery sheen. It makes lips look so full and luminous- and truly out of this world! :)

MAC Lustre Lipstick in Luna Lustre

Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Mother
As you'll see as you read through this list, there are three (three!) of these lipsticks on my list- 2016 was the year where I finally delved into Kat von D and I was not disappointed! Mother was the shade I ended up wearing most- it's a beautiful cool-toned dusty rose with subtle violet undertones. It's vivid enough to brighten up the face, but is also softly muted so that it's ultra versatile. Totally unique in my stash and always in my bag! 

Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Mother

ColourPop Ultra Metallic Lip in Wolfie
A post that's still coming your way is my epic annual ColourPop haul that I placed last Fall. I tend to indulge in the brand in a big way once per year and 2016 brought some amazing lip colour launches. I bought a few of their new Ultra Metallic Lips (long-wearing glosses with a lush, metallic finish), but the one I wore most was Wolfie- a gorgeous mid-tone berry with a golden sheen. It makes lips look so plush and full! 

ColourPop Ultra Metallic Lip in Wolife

And swatches of each on my inner arm (MAC NC15 skin tone):

(L-R): MAC Satin Lipstick in Sushi Kiss, MAC Lustre Lipstick in Luna Lustre, Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Mother, ColourPop Ultra Metallic Lip in Wolife

                                                                                                                                                                                     The Oranges and Corals

Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Berlin
Berlin is actually the shade I'd been stalking the longest before I finally bit the bullet at IMATS last year. I'm so glad I finally snagged it, as it's the most beautiful coral pink that warms up the face nicely. It straddles the borderline between soft and vivid so perfectly, in that it's easy to wear, but has just the perfect pop of colour! 

NYX Matte Lipstick in Indie Flick
I'm such a huge fan of the NYX Matte Lipstick formula (so underrated, really!- their liquid lippies get all the love), but hadn't bought one in ages. I remedied that last summer when I purchased a couple and the standout was definitely Indie Flick- a fully pigmented bold orange with subtle red and coral undertones that make it just beyond your basic orange. It is perfection in the Summer and Fall! 

Besame Classic Colour Lipstick in Carmine
I finally got to experience Besame lipsticks at IMATS New York last year. I'd always loved the retro inspiration and the fact that they offer just about any variation of red imaginable. The selection was so, so difficult (seriously, every one of their shades is special!), but I ended up opting for Carmine, a 1930s-inspired orange red that blends a totally retro feel with my love of bold colour. It makes me feel both sophisticated and fierce! 

Besame Classic Colour Lipstick in Carmine

Chanel Coco Rouge Stylo in Histoire
A lipstick release that was totally under-hyped last year as the Chanel Coco Rouge Stylo range. Already on my radar but hyped as a must by Kaitlyn, these lip colours are such a beautiful blend of a soft, moisturizing, semi-glossy formula with fully pigmented colour. I opted for Histoire, a lovely pinky coral red. Though bright and vivid, it also manages to look totally sophisticated and wearable. Leave it to Chanel to get that balance right! 

Chanel Rouge Coco Stylo in Histoire

And here are swatches on my inner arm (MAC NC15 skin tone):

(L-R): Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Berlin, NYX Matte Lipstick in Indie Flick, Besame Classic Colour Lipstick in Carmine, Chanel Rouge Coco Stylo in Histoire

The Reds and Berries

Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Santa Sangre
There are so many reds in my stash, but there's something about Santa Sangre that screams ultra fierce. I chose it because of the fun shade name (not gonna lie) as well as it's been said that it's Kat von D's personal fave. It's a killer slightly warm red that brightens the complexion, doesn't dry out my lips, despite the matte finish, and will 100% make you feel like a hot babe (I promise!). I wore it for my bachelorette party and I felt like a femme fatale all night ;)

Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Santa Sangre

Too Faced Melted Matte Long Wear Lipstick in Melted Candy Cane
I needed another fuchsia-red lipstick like a hole in the head, but this one is special because it offers a matte finish that feels totally soft and comfortable on the lips plus (and this is a big plus) it smells like chocolate mint! I snagged this limited edition shade during the Fall Sephora VIB sale and wore it so much over the holidays. It complements my complexion so nicely and the wear time is fab! 

Too Faced  Melted Matte Liquid Lipstick in Melted Candy Cane

Tom Ford Patent Finish Lip Colour in Exposed
Another lip colour launch that had me obsessed last year was the Tom Ford Patent Finish Lip Colour range (yes, another ultra pricey one- I'm sorry!). The line offers several bold, vivid hues from magenta to orange red (all so up my alley, I could have bought all of them) that offer a plush, glossy finish and full-on colour. The shade I selected was Exposed, a cool-toned cherry that just screams Summertime, though I wear it year-round. When first applied, it gives lips a bold, lush look and, when it wears off, it leaves behind a beautiful stain reminiscent of that post-cherry popsicle flush. I love this one so much! 

Tom Ford Patent Finish Lip Colour in Exposed

MAC Matte Lipstick in Have Your Cake
This was an early 2016 fave from the MAC Flamingo Park collection, but I loved it so much it was a regular in my lineup year-round. It's a gorgeous matte cool-toned pinky violet that balances the line between purple and neon pink so nicely. It's surprisingly wearable and always makes me look so bright and awake!

MAC Matte Lipstick in Have Your Cake

And swatches on my inner arm (MAC NC15 skin tone):

(L-R): Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Santa Sangre, Too Faced Melted Matte Liquid Lipstick in Melted Candy Cane, Tom Ford Patent Finish Lip Colour in Exposed, MAC Matte Lipstick in Have Your Cake

The Purples and Browns

OCC Lip Tar in Indrid
2016 was a year where I succumbed to the lipstick trends of unusual, should be unflattering but look totally fierce shades, and Indrid embodies this movement perfectly! Definitely one of the most unique hues in my stash, it's a beautiful blend of lilac, pink, and grey. There's just enough pink in the shade that it doesn't give me "dead lips", but the purple and grey tones are prominent enough that it's a true eye-catcher. And the glossy Lip Tar finish makes it extra flattering! 

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar in Indrid

MAC Liptensity Lipstick in Galaxy Grey
This one is a funny pick because it made it to my list despite the fact that I've only worn it once (oops!). It made the cut for a couple reasons though- a) I was so impressed with the Liptensity launch- the fully pigmented, ultra comfortable formula is fab and the shade range was so comprehensive and unique and b) Galaxy Grey is both incredibly unique and surprisingly wearable. It's a grey-tinged gum drop purple with very subtle pinky undertones. When paired with a lively blush shade, it doesn't wash out the face and instead makes lips look lush and beautiful (in a slightly weirdo kind of way that I love). 

MAC Liptensity Lipstick in Galaxy Grey

Tom Ford Lip Colour in Dark and Stormy
2016 was also a year where I totally fell for a vampy brown lip. I managed to only buy one classic Tom Ford Lip Colour last year (the prices are just getting so intense) and the shade that won my pick was Dark and Stormy- a deep cherry brown with a satin finish. It's rich and full-bodied, but the berry undertones makes it surprisingly wearable and flattering. I bet this would work on just about anyone! So if you feel like splurging and surprising yourself with a unique lipstick shade- check this out! 

Tom Ford Lip Colour in Dark and Stormy 

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Whiskey
Bite Beauty had some pretty epic releases last year- they are truly and innovative brand on the move! Their Sweet and Savory Amuse Bouche collection from last summer offered a unique mix of pale candied pinks, purples, and neutrals and deep sultry greens, browns, and blacks. My absolute favourite of the bunch was Whiskey- a true dark blackened brown with warm undertones and a semi-matte finish. It gives a true vampy effect and the brown hue makes it ultra modern. Plus, whiskey is my alcoholic beverage of choice, so it was made for me! 

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Whiskey

And here are swatches on my inner arm (MAC NC15 skin tone):

(L-R): OCC Lip Tar in Indrid, MAC Liptensity Lipstick in Galaxy Grey, Tom Ford Lip Colour in Dark and Story, Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Whiskey

After reviewing my choices, I realized that I'd be totally remiss to omit the amazing MAC Retro Matte Liquid Lip Colours. Their initial launch last January had me totally obsessed and my favourite of the bunch was Fashion Legacy, a bold orange-toned red. They also released another extensive shade selection in late December, which you will see on the blog soon! You can see my review of the Retro Matte Liquid Lip Colours here

And finally (as if this post weren't long enough), my final lipstick shout-out of 2016 goes to one that might be the most special of all: the custom Bite Beauty lipstick I created at the Lip Lab in New York last April! It's especially close to my heart because I designed the lipstick to wear on my wedding day and I did just that! I opted for an ultra matte berry red to create a statement while still bringing brightness and not overwhelming my complexion. I am so happy with how it turned out and it made me feel extra glamorous on my big day! 

Custom Bite Beauty Lipstick from the Bite Beauty Lip Lab in NYC (as featured in a selfie about an hour before my wedding ceremony!)

Wow, you made it to the end- I salute you! I'm sure you've all glazed over and/or added several lipsticks to your wishlist. Either way, I send you all the best of vibes for the coming week. Look out for more frequent posts here at Vibrant Beauty coming soon! xo


Sunday, 22 January 2017

Sparkly Heaven with Inglot's The Star in You Collection

Hi, everyone! When I first got into high-end makeup (think late '90s), I was all about pigments and loose shadows. I loved the multi-faceted, shimmery finishes, the bold colour, and the ability to mix the powders in a number of ways (e.g., into lipstick for a metallic effect or with a mixing medium for a liquefied, extra pigmented effect). For whatever reason, loose shadows had totally fallen off my radar over the past two years and what a shame! Yes, they can be messy, but they are so fun to use and can really create the most unique, stunning eye looks. So when Inglot released their glitzy The Star in You collection, which includes a range of rich, luminous pigments and glitters, I was more than happy to delve back into that medium! 

The Star in You collection was released late last month and features the most beautiful promo photos. There is glitz and shine everywhere, but with a total ethereal super hero way (like one part She-Ra, one part disco fairy), which caught my attention, of course! 

The collection contains six shades of AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadow ($20 CAD), which are loose powders that promise 90% pure pigment with versatile effects- you can wear them dry for a sheer, shimmery look or mixed with Inglot's Duraline for a bolder, saturated liquid metal effect. These are definitely pigments, as opposed to glitters, but definitely have glittery and shimmery bits throughout. The shades range from white gold to peach to olive and are all quite beautiful! They're housed in sturdy plastic pots that allow you to see the product inside. 

The range also includes six shades of Body Sparkles ($20 CAD), which are multi-dimensional coloured glitters that can be used on nails, lips, and body (just not safe for eyes). They can be mixed in with nail polish, lipstick, or body lotion to customize a glitter effect or lightly patted over skin or lips. The pots are quite tiny, but a little goes a long way if you're not looking for opaque coverage. 

I was lucky to receive four products from the launch- AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadows in 121**, 122**, and 126**, and Body Sparkles 47**. I definitely oohed and ahhed as I opened the pots- such stunning colour and shine and a perfect range of shades that allowed me to properly test out the collection! 

Here are swatches of the Pigments and Body Sparkles I received: 

(L-R): Inglot AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadows in 121, 126, and 122 and Body Sparkles in 47

The textures are definitely grittier than other loose pigments I've tried (MAC's, for instance), but smooth over skin fairly easily and the shine is undoubtedly stunning! When mixed with water, the pigmentation goes sky-high and they take on a more metallic, rather than glittery look. If I had Inglot Duraline or MAC Mixing Medium, I think the effect would be even more dramatic and the texture, more adherent. I must buy one of those soon! 

And for some close-ups and shade descriptions of each:

AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadow 121**- a warm, pale yellow gold with prominent ivory shimmer

AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadow 126**- a warm apricot coral with gold shimmer

AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadow 122**- an olive-tinged antique bronze with golden shimmer

Body Sparkles 47**- berry pink glitter in an orange-coral base

A couple weeks ago I was lucky enough to get the royal treatment at the Toronto Yonge and Dundas Inglot store- lovely makeup artist LJ demonstrated the collection for me by creating a stunning warm, smokey, glittery eye look. She used a variety of matte, warm neutral Freedom System Eye Shadows to sculpt the eyes, then primed my lids with AMC Eyeliner Gel 68 (a nude shade) and topped it with a mix of Duraline and Pure Pigment Eye Shadow 121. She created a striking cat eye with AMC Eyeliner Gel 77 and coated my lashes with Secret Volume Mascara. On the lips, she opted for a modern neutral shade from the What a Spice collection- HD Lip Ting Matte 37- a neutral chestnut brown. 

Here are some shots from our playtime! 

Some of the lovely ingredients of my makeover!

With my lovely makeup artist, LJ
Post-makeover selfie

And here are some shots of the makeover from later that day- while my skin is a bit shiny, my blush is bolder (I popped on some extra colour at Sephora) and the lip colour is partially worn off (though I have to say I'm way impressed with the wear of the HD Lip Tint Matte 37- what you see lasted through a meal and coffee), the eyes still looked like perfection hours later! 

And a couple close-ups of the eyes: 

So whether you are looking to rekindle your love of pigments (like me), are a tried and true glitter-a-holic, or are wanting to try loose shadows for the first time and like some sparkle, the Inglot The Star in You collection is totally worth checking out! The shade selection is beautiful and, especially when combined with water or a mixing medium, the AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadows produce a metallic sheen that really is quite breathtaking. I have yet to try the Body Sparkle (it would have been so perfect for my bachelorette parties in the Fall), but next time I head out to a festive makeup event or out on the dance floor, glittery skin awaits! 

You can find The Star in You collection at any Inglot Store or on the Inglot website

Thanks so much for stopping by! xo

**Products marked with these asterisks were given to me as PR samples for consideration and review. All opinions expressed in this post are 100% authentic and my own! 

Thursday, 19 January 2017

A Shoppers Beauty Boutique Haul ft. Urban Decay, Smashbox, and BeneFit!

Hi, everyone! There are few things I love more than perusing beauty shops, spritzing and swatching away. That said, there are certain times (the dead of winter, for instance), where some cozy online shopping in my PJs is just what I need. Luckily, the Shoppers Drug Mart Beauty Boutique has recently launched their online shop and, since that's one one of my favourite places to snag great beauty in-person, it was no surprise that browsing their virtual store was also a treat! 

The Beauty Boutique online store has been adding some fantastic brands lately, and when Urban Decay joined the lineup in December, I knew I had to place an order. I spent awhile sifting  through the options, but I ultimately selected goodies from UD, BeneFit, and Smashbox

The products arrived in an adorable, luxurious Beauty Boutique box with a pretty blue lid, with everything tucked in neatly. The added attention to detail was very nice! 

Here's a peek at what I chose:

Precisely, My Brow Pencil in Shade 02** ($30 CAD)

"Oh my WOW… precise & defined eyebrows! Go from shapeless & undefined to filled & defined eyebrows with a few strokes of this precision eyebrow pencil. The twist-up, ultra-fine tip draws incredibly natural-looking, hair-like strokes and the rich, smudge-proof colour lasts for 12 hours." (from beautyboutique.ca)

If you've ever seen one of my makeup-free selfies, you'll know that my brows are so, so sparse. Thanks, the '90s, and your pencil thin brows. Blah. So while I've been pretty loyal to my Anastasia Brow Powder Duo over the past decade, I'm always on the lookout for an easy to use brow pencil that'll also do the job. While people sometimes recommend thicker pencils for ultra sparse brows, I still like a thin tip because I still want to be precise. That's why Precisely, My Brow was so tempting! I have to say that Shade 02 is a perfect match for my cool-toned dark blonde hair, the narrow shape really creates an ultra precise application, and the waxy formula really makes for ultra long wear! The only downside that I've found is that because the formula is more waxy (as opposed to creamy), it takes a while to layer the product to desired intensity, so application takes a little while. As such, I don't think this will become my daily brow product, but it's now snuggled in my on-the-go makeup bag and is absolutely perfect for touch-ups! 

As with all BeneFit products, Precisely, My Brow comes in cute colourful packaging with fun, girly, circus-themed graphics and some photo depictions of the product in action. The product itself comes in a thin, shiny silver tube with pink lettering and a handy twist-up mechanism. 

Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipstick in Babe Alert** ($28 CAD)

A featherweight, non-drying, liquid matte lipstick that stays put and keeps colour looking fresh and flawless as the first swipe for up to eight hours." (from beautyboutique.ca)

I'm at a funny place with the matte liquid lipstick trend- part of me rolls my eyes with every new release and shakes my fist at how dry these formulas can leave my lips; on the other hand, I can't help but still be ultra curious when a liquid lipstick launch offers amazing, unique shades. I'd heard nothing but good things about the Always On formula from blogger friends and the promise of a lightweight, non-drying formula with actual moisturizers like jojoba really tempted me! 

Despite several bold, unusual shades in the range, I opted for a more wearable colour that I could sport on the regular. I chose Babe Alert, a warm coral-tinged nude that brightens my complexion and pairs so well with smokey, colourful, and neutral eye looks alike. It does indeed feel light and comfortable on the lips and the wear time is impressive! 

The Always On Liquid Lipsticks come in black cardboard boxes with a colour-coordinated swatch on the box matching the shade inside. The tubes are square shaped and made of ultra sturdy plastic that allows you to see the colour of the product. The applicator is unique and handy- like a flattened doe foot with a pointed tip that really lets you get into every corner of the lips! 

Urban Decay Vice Lipsticks in Crisis and Mrs. Mia Wallace** ($21 CAD each)

"Prepare to get hooked. Vice Lipstick comes in a massive lineup of 100 addictive shades and six indulgent finishes—Urban Decay’s biggest lineup yet! Vice has it all: Bold brights. Dark, sexy shades. Super-versatile neutrals. With so much variety it’ll make your head spin, there’s something for everyone—from new shades to cult favourites you thought you’d never see again." (from beautyboutique.ca)

I've been an Urban Decay fanatic for 15 years, so when they released this epic collection of lipsticks last year my head started spinning. There were so many shades to choose from and the promise of bold pigmentation and and a comfortable texture were extra tempting. I didn't know where to start, so I held off until recently. It was so difficult to narrow down my picks, but I ultimated opted for a stunning bold red with an amazing movie reference, Mrs. Mia Wallace, and a modern neutral plummy brown, Crisis. Both are of the brand's Cream formula (which they describe as "the original- creamy, badass luxury") and feel so smooth and hydrating on the lips with a wonderfully pigmented finish. 

The Vice Lipsticks come in ultra cool, colourful black boxes with lipstick graphics and gold lettering. The tubes are sleek with gold and silver metal and the bullets are imprinted with the UD logo- a fun touch! 

Here's a closeup of Mrs. Mia Wallace:

And Crisis

And here are swatches of all three of the lip colours from my haul on my inner arm (MAC NC15 skin tone): 

(L-R): Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipstick in Babe Alert and Urban Decay Vice Lipsticks in Crisis and Mrs. Mia Wallace 

The Beauty Boutique also offers three samples with every online order. There were a great variety of brands and products to try and I opted for the classic Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, a soothing serum from the Nuxe Creme Fraiche range, and an oil-free hydrator from the new Philosophy Breathe collection. I can't wait to give them a try! 

I am so, so happy with my picks (I clearly didn't need any more lipsticks, but that's beside the point) and my Beauty Boutique online experience was great! The brand selection is fab (it now even includes Chanel!) and the shipping was ultra quick (it came in a few days in late December, which says a lot). So if you want to snag some luxe, colourful makeup from the comfort of your home this winter, the Beauty Boutique is a solid way to go :)

What are your favourite brands at the Beauty Boutique? Did I tempt you with anything?

Thanks so much for stopping by! xo

**The products in this post were purchased with a promotional gift card provided to me at a PR event for Shoppers Beauty Boutique. All opinions expressed in this post are 100% authentic and my own!