18 July 2017

Peach & Lily Peach Slices' Citrus-Honey Aqua Glow Moisturizer - Review

I recently found some users on some makeup and skincare subreddits raving about this moisturizer and had to try it for myself. They had me at "light," "gel texture," and "honey." 

The worst part for me as a Canadian was finding it to purchase. I read reviews from Americans 99% of the time, so when they're like "just go to CVS/Ulta/Walgreens," it's not that simple. I ended up ordering directly from Peach and Lily. So if you're in the US and want to try this, apparently it's in the neighbourhood of $12USD at CVS in the new k-beauty section and there's no reason not to try it! That's a great price for (spoilers) a great product. 

Peach and Lily sent two samples, an essence and ampoule, both which were items I am interested in trying. Shipping to Ontario took about two weeks. which is decent... but the shipping was $17.36USD. Yikes. My other option was just never using it, which I guess is fine, but I was really interested in it.. so I swallowed up that cost and ordered 2 of the moisturizing gels to make it worth the order. 

The scent is nice. It is fragranced as advertised, a mixture of honey and citrus. It's not too overpowering, but it's there if you stick your nose in it. It isn't detectable after application. The texture is a light, clear gel. It is similar to my usual moisturizer from Clinique, the Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel, but maybe closer in feel to Moisture Surge. It absorbs quickly for me and leaves my face soft and smooth. 

I don't really like the twist off cap, it's small and hard to put back on sometimes. I like things that just pop on and off or pumps, to make my routine quicker and less finicky.

For reference, my skin is normal AF and I don't have too many skin concerns or goals besides maintaining moisture and preventing signs of aging. This is great for my goals and skin-type.

21 June 2017

May/June Empties ✨

I am really bad at hanging onto to empty packages and remembering to take a picture.. somehow it feels a bit unnatural to hoard my garbage for social media? But here are a couple items I've finished up recently and how I felt about them.

Adama Minerals French Rose Clay Hydrating Face Mask - this was only just fine to me. I picked it up at Winner's on a whim, at the time I didn't have another clay mask I was using. It reduced oil after application but didn't do wonders for my skin. The mask feels like a regular clay mask once applied, but when you squeeze it out it's very wiggly like jell-o! It just made me laugh for no reason, so at least it was a joy to use. I would be interested in trying the brand's other masks and some other products.. the deodorants seem interesting!
Overall rating: 2.5/5, wouldn't repurchase. 

HadoLabo Gokujyun Hyaluronic Lotion - my favourite hydrating toner. It's just perfect in every way to me. It lasts forever, it has a nice watery consistency, it absorbs well, it helps with moisture and the rest of my routine. I only didn't buy another one because I order in online and I am deviating from my "holy grail" to try Klairs' Supple Preparation Toner. I'll likely go back to this one after.
Overall rating: 5/5, likely will always have a place in my routine.

OGX Argan Oil of Morocco Penetrating Oil - I just use it on the ends of my hair after showering and before styling. I always use some sort of oil or serum and to me they all work similarly. I like to try new brands and types of oils and serums, so while I liked this I probably won't buy it again any time soon. I'm using RenPure's Coconut Oil Renewing Dry Oil now since this one's gone. 
Overall rating: 3.5/5, worked well enough, but not running to grab a new one immediately. 

Stila Huge Lash Mascara - I really liked this deluxe sample, but at the same time, I have discovered most mascaras will work for me. I mostly just go out of my way to not purchase waterproof and everything else is fair game. Since I'm not picky, I don't repurchase mid-range mascaras. I can buy something that works well for $6 and don't have to shell out $30+. 
Overall rating: 4/5, but too expensive. 

Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara - Now, considering what I just said.. I wouldn't be mad if another sample made its way to me or I was gifted this. It really did go the extra mile and make my lashes look perfectly lengthened and separated.. luxurious, like falsies. This is the only expensive mascara I would love to get again!
Overall rating: 5/5, but I really don't like the price so I'm crying into my new tube of Lash Paradise.

I'm really close to finishing up a couple of cleansers, some small skincare samples from Clinique and GlamGlow, and a Clean & Clear BHA. For makeup, I suspect I'll soon be reporting back about a bb cream, eyeshadow primer, and pencil eyeliner. 

08 June 2017

Skincare - My Current Actives

Hi, all!

I have been using BHAs and AHAs for about a year and a half, but only in the last 6 months have I introduced retinoids and vitamin C. I just wanted to share some small reviews of my favourite products in this category. I would encourage you to do some research on how to best use these types of products, such as the order of application and necessary pH levels, in order to be safe and use them most effectively.

⭐ My skin is normal with a little bit of hyper-pigmentation (dense clusters of freckles that form brown spots on my jaw, mostly) and my goals are to maintain moisture, maintain a bright and even skin-tone, and prevent signs of aging. ⭐

from left to right: The Ordinary Advanced Retinoid 2%, OST Pure Vitamin C 21.5, pixi Glow Tonic, CosRX AHA/BHA Clarifying Treatment Toner, Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix

The Ordinary Advanced Retinoid 2%
Because I am very interested in maintaining good skin and preventing signs of aging, my research lead me to looking for retinoid products. The Advanced Retinoid 2% by Deciem's The Ordinary is inexpensive and easy to use, with a dropper and a darkened bottle. Retinoids are supposed to "cause enhanced collagen production, be skin smoothing, and even out pigmentation." I have been using this about 2-3 times each week in the evening for 9 weeks. I have seen improvement in fine lines of my forehead and generally more smoothness in my skin. 

Pure Vitamin C Wishtrend Advanced Serum 
I didn't initially look into trying a vitamin C (L-AA) product because it seemed like a greatly loved ingredient for people with acne scarring, but this wasn't a concern for me so I glossed over such products for a long time. I have some dark spots on my jaw that I wouldn't mind to fade, and who doesn't love smooth and glowing skin, anyway? I figured I had nothing to lose, so I started using this serum. I keep it in my fridge at the recommendation of most bloggers because it oxidizes quicker without being in a cool, dark place. I usually use this at night. So far I have been using it daily except for days where I use my retinoid. I seem to have faded some pesky red spots from a breakout I had in April from just my first few uses, and I'm quite happy about that. It's kind of a nuisance to go back and forth to the fridge and I don't move on to applying other products until at least 30 minutes after using it, but I think it'll be worth it.

pixi Glow Tonic
A very popular AHA (glycolic acid) in the online skincare world. I have heard a lot of mixed reviews and apparently the pH is too high for it to be a really good exfoliant. I still enjoy using it. I love the scent (mmmm, witch hazel) and it makes my face feel smooth and clean. I do find it a bit expensive in Canada for a small bottle, but you don't need much and I've had the smaller bottle since January and I'm not done with it yet.

CosRX AHA/BHA Treatment Toner
I recently discovered that this is best used just before applying actives because it prepares your skin to best use/absorb other ingredients and lowers pH. I like to spray it onto a cotton round and then swipe my face with it before applying vitamin C. It's super gentle and can be used daily.

Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Daily Cleansing Pads 
These are the same idea as the pixi Glow Tonic, but they are pre-soaked rounds. pixi actually has a similar product, but I really wanted to try these. I like them because they are convenient to use and saves me from buying cotton rounds on their own, but I would like to try the "Extreme" version which has glycolic acid, lactic acid, and salicylic acid. These are definitely gentle for more sensitive skin-types.

I would repurchase all of these products and I feel they have really helped me achieve my skincare goals.