Sunday, January 30, 2011

Colbert M.D. - Intensify Facial Discs


Happy Sunday ladies! I hope you are all having a relaxing day! I'm stuck in my house because of the huge amount of snow that hit Calgary yesterday and has kept up today - Boo! (I'm not actually stuck I just don't want to go outside haha) So, today I decided to give my self a little at-home facial and relax. As I was doing my facial, I realized I hadn't told you all about this amazing little product, so here it is!

These are Colbert M.D. Intensify Facial Discs. I hadn't heard about this brand until recently (I had heard about the Doctor himself but didn't know he had skin care products). The lovely team over at Colbert M.D. sent me these discs in consideration of a review and I must say I am incredibly happy to review them! 


Colbert M.D.'s philosophy is simple - "Daily Nutrition for the Skin in three easy steps" (this is an extra step, so the fourth). The products promote the natural healing and repairing process to get your skin back in tip-top shape. I will tell you I haven't been using these in conjunction with the other Colbert M.D. samples - I have just been using them with my current skin care routine. 

First, these come in a luxurious glass jar. I love it when packaging is pretty and simple enough to leave out on my counter or vanity! These pads are a combination of enzyme exfoliation and "microdermabrasion" - double the benefit! They contain Bromelain (pineapple enzyme to break down dead skin cells) and Lactic Acid which is a gentle natural exfoliator. I love the idea of having two different types of exfoliation in one simple step! Personally, I feel like my skin doesn't exfoliate itself as much as it should - I always have clogged pores and dull skin so I live for exfoliating products! These pads are also super simple to use, you just take one out, gently rub it on your face for 60 seconds, rinse and your done! 


I had to show you this picture even though it is really gross! These are the pads before and after use (left - before, right - after). The most impressive part is that this is after 60 seconds of use on cleansed skin! And when I say cleansed, I mean cleansed! I hadn't worn makeup in two days and had used my Clarisonic skin care brush a total of 4 times before using this pad (once immediately before)! Those are all dead skin cells! Yuck! But wow, this really does show how effective these are! 


These also have a cute little design where there is a tab on the back so you can get a good grip and really exfoliate the face with no problems! These discs are amazing! My skin feels so smooth after I use these and stays smooth for days afterwards (which is pretty rare for me)! So far, I've been using these about 2 times per week (you can use them 1-3 times per week) and it works perfectly for me! Another great thing about these is they cause no irritation whatsoever and you cannot "feel" the exfoliation as it's occurring! I know I've used many different Glycolic & Lactic treatments that really irritated my skin and made it super red and sensitive afterwards so I was so glad to see that my skin was not irritated or red at all after using these! 

I am incredibly impressed with these - this is one of those products you discover and never want to be without again! (Which may be a problem for me because they are pricy and I may never be able to afford them again haha) These are $52 USD for 20 pads but trust me, they are worth every penny! I can't say enough about these, if you need an exfoliator, you need to try these pads you will not regret it!

I'm looking forward to trying out my other samples after having such success with these! :)

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Cake Beauty - Hair & Body Powder


Good afternoon ladies! (I almost said Good Morning - not quite lol) I'm so glad I'm getting back into posting everyday, I have so many items backing up in my "to blog about" drawer that it needs to be emptied - and quick! So today I'm reviewing one of my new favourites that I was SO excited to find at my local Winners store for only $9.99!

This is Cake Beauty's Satin Sugar Hair & Body Powder. Now, if you are like me and have a darker hair colour (mine is a medium/dark brown) it is next to impossible to find an affordable hair powder in a dark shade (in Canada - we don't have the Batiste Brunette). I have been on the search for a good hair powder for a good year now and tried MANY along the way. Personally, I hate to wash my hair (sounds gross haha) but my hair is so thick and long that it takes me forever to wash it, forever to condition it and FOREVER to blowdry/style it! I don't have the time or patience for that so hair powder is my best friend! A few I tried before this include Batiste Original, CLEAN Hair Powder and Tresemme Clean Start. All of them either looked white in my hair or didn't do the job well enough so I was on the hunt for a darker coloured hair powder and finally I found one!


Here you can see that this powder isn't necessarily dark in colour but its dark enough to not leave behind that whitish/ashy cast that lets people know that you have put powder in your hair! This powder also smells SO good! Its incredibly light and fresh in scent and the Cake website describes it as "Baked Lemon Sugar" - which is the perfect description because I could not put my finger on it! This is a great alternative to more expensive hair powders that retail for $33+ in salons *Cough Cough* Bumble&Bumble! haha


I also love that this can be used as a body powder as well! When I first picked it up, I Tweeted about how excited I was and the Cake Beauty Twitter team responded saying it was also Talc Free. I'm going to be honest with you, I don't know why Talc would be a bad thing so if you know why, please let me know down below! This powder is extremely light weight and practically disappears when applied to the skin or hair and leaves no residue or colour. This has a sifter top or a pour top so you can get out as much as you would like. I shake it onto my hand first then apply to my hair or body! This powder also does a great job of soaking up all the excess oils in your hair and completely refreshing it! Overall, I'm in love and really hope I can find this again! I'm not sure where you can buy Cake Beauty products regularly so I will have to look into that and try some more products from them! If you can see at the very bottom of the photo this powder is Made In Canada - Yay!

Do you all have some favourite Cake Beauty products? This is my first purchase but I am so happy and would really like to get more into the line! Please leave me your favourites in a comment! :)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Deals & Steals: Hard Candy - Glamoflauge Heavy Duty Concealer


Good Morning ladies! Sorry for the intermittent posts lately, I've been a busy girl! Today I'm reviewing a product that I am quite amazed with and wanted to share with everyone. A while back, I won a Twitter contest from Hard Candy and this was my prize!

This is Hard Candy's Glamoflauge Heavy Duty Concealer. I was super excited when I realized that this was my prize! I love a good concealer and we have yet to get these in Canada (at least in Calgary). I'm not sure if you can tell from the photo, but this is a HUGE tube of concealer and will probably last me forever! It is bigger than the Clinique All About Eyes concealers for comparison (which I already think are huge haha). 

I like to have a lot of difference consistency concealers for different problems - liquid for under eyes, cream for blemishes, cake for other blemishes haha and of course my Maybelline dream mousse for everything! I have a really hard time covering blemishes so I'm always looking for a new concealer to do the job, this one is incredibly impressive!


First off, they sent me the shade medium, which I was kind of skeptical about because I am pretty fair. The surprising thing about this concealer is that it is extremely neutral in its undertone! There is no pink, orange, red - it's a true beige. I was happy to see that because I don't have many distinct undertones to my skin so this ended up being extremely versatile for me! It also blends into skin really well and is almost undetectable. 


Honestly, this is probably the most pigmented concealer I have ever come across (I'm sure there are many more pigmented - I'm just going with the ones I have in my collection!) This concealer covers every single bit of redness you may have in your skin and completely neutralizes it out! When I first tried it, I couldn't believe what it was covering and how little you needed to get the job done! I also love that it comes with the tiny concealer pencil (which also gives amazing coverage with a different consistency) that is great for using on blemishes, broken capillaries and other tiny imperfections that you need to be precise with. 

My only issue with this (the cream part - tube) is that it can build up on the skin and be noticeable if you apply too much. This is easily corrected if you go over it with a damp sponge or just be very careful about how much you are applying - you only need the TINIEST bit! I know this is a very inexpensive concealer (not sure of the price because it isn't in Canada) and would definitely be worth a try if you are looking for a highly pigmented concealer at a great price! 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Zeno Hot Spot - Review


Hey ladies! Today I have a review that I am really excited to share with you! As you may know from reading previous posts, I purchased the Zeno Hot Spot Blemish Clearing Device with my Shoppers Optimum points a few weeks back. I was very curious to see how this little pocket sized gadget would work on my random breakouts so I have been using it as directed for the past few weeks.

First, I'm going to give you a little background on myself and the product. I have oily skin, prone to blemishes (not excessive, more random) of the smaller variety. Those little annoying white bumps or blackheads that are hard to get rid of and hard not to pick at. This device is focused for use on larger, inflamed blemishes with no visible white head. I do get random blemishes like this and they are often very hard to treat and take forever to go away! That is why I bought this, for the random, annoying and difficult blemishes that need extra treatment.

Since I bought this I have only had two blemishes that fall into the aforementioned category. (Wow, writing university papers sure changes the words I use in blog life haha Good word though, I like it!) You are told in the instructions to place the metal tip onto the blemish without applying force and leave it there for the timed two and a half minute treatment (Which is harder than it sounds, two and a half minutes is a long time when you aren't doing anything else lol)! After that, you leave your blemish alone and hopefully you will see a difference in the next two hours or so (as the package states). If you don't see an improvement after the two hours, you can use it again for a two minute treatment.

Double click to enlarge

For my blemishes I only had to use it once on each one. I used it both times at night before going to bed so I can't say much about the two hour claim. I can however say that my blemishes were either completely gone in the morning or had drastically reduced so that makeup could help the rest! I was shocked and am hoping that these two blemishes were not "flukes" and that it will continue working how it is because the results were fantastic! Another thing I like about this is that its, in a sense, natural. All you are using is heat to help with your blemishes as opposed to harsh chemicals such as Benzoyl Peroxide (which I have insane reactions to so I can't use it!) I will admit, I was skeptical when first trying this - who would have thought gentle heat could do so much? Well, it can!I would highly recommend this to anyone that suffers from the occasional difficult blemish that needs extra treatment. If you have moderate acne, I'm not sure if this would be right for you as the Hot Spot only includes limited treatments (80) and if you have many blemishes it may not be as cost effective as other methods. 

Zeno has a newer product out called Heat Treat which I am also extremely interested in! It is more of a preventative measure, check it out here. (PS it's only available for retail in the US - you have to order it online to Canada) I'm really intrigued by this device since I've had my success with the Hot Spot, hopefully I will be able to test and review it soon as well (financial situation dependent lol).




Disclaimer: I purchased this with my own money - well, own Shoppers Optimum Points haha. I am not affiliated with the company and none of the links are affiliate links, they are only there for your information. I was not asked to do a review of this or any other products mentioned in this post. 

Friday, January 21, 2011

Welcome to our new home!


Good morning all my lovely ladies!! This is just a quick welcome to the new home of Cosmetically Curious! I finally got my own custom domain and wanted to share it with everyone!

We are now at www.cosmeticallycurious.ca! I'm very excited to have this new address and hope it makes it easier for people to find me! I'm also excited for the .ca as now everyone will know my Canadian pride! haha

Thanks for stopping by, there will be some product reviews to come today so make sure to pop back to www.cosmeticallycurious.ca! (I just like saying it! lol)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Shiseido Prize from Beautystat.com!


Hey ladies! This has been on my "blog to-do list" for a while now and I'm finally getting to it! Back in early December I won a giveaway from BeautyStat.com and Japanese Beauty Brands! I received my package in early January (I was away for a lot of December so I'm not actually sure when it arrived haha) and was SO excited to try it out!

I have had really good experiences with the Shiseido products that I've tried (although it is very few - Shiseido is a pricy brand!) I am a big fan of their Pureness line for oily/blemish prone skin - their makeup removing wipes are FANTASTIC and come in a great container! For this reason I was really excited to be able to try something new from their line!

What I Received

- Shiseido Nourishing Mascara Base (Mini) (Not Pictured)
- Shiseido Instant Eye & Lip Makeup Remover (Mini) (Not Pictured)
- Faux Patent, Red, folding Shiseido Makeup Bag (Not Pictured)

Boy, did I feel spoiled when I got this! The Refining Essence alone sells for $88 CAD! Not only did I get luxurious products, but they are working absolutely great on my skin! I sort of expected to get something for wrinkles or something super moisturizing that wouldn't work well with my skin. I was SO beyond happy to find an exfoliating treatment that also lightly hydrates and in no way makes me breakout! 

I have been using the Refining Essence since I received this gift (about 3 weeks) and couldn't go a day without it! It makes your skin look radiant and glowing as well as hydrated without any breakouts. The best part about this serum is I saw a difference almost immediately in my skin (within the first two days!)


The texture is super soft and contains some silicones to give it a smooth feel! It absorbs quickly and thoroughly (like a serum) and is perfect for oily/congested skins like mine! I'm in love with this but am dreading the day that I have to buy a new one for $88 CAD!! But believe me, I will need to buy another one when I run out! 

PS - I have yet to try the other products - reviews to come! :)

Make sure to check out BeautyStat.com & Japanese Beauty Brands for reviews, blog posts, contests and prices! 


Disclaimer: I won these products through a random draw giveaway. I was not asked to review them or to promote their sites in my review but I think you should check out both because I personally love them! None of the sites are affiliate links - they are only there for more information or if you want to check them out :)

Your One-Stop Skin Care Shop!


Hey Ladies! Hope your evenings are going well! You may have seen a similar post to this one on Pammy's blog over at Pammy Blogs Beauty - (Gee Pammy, I mention you a lot! haha) but she was the one who introduced me to this amazing site so she deserves much of the credit!

For those of you who didn't see Pammy's post, this is about a new website called MySkin.com. My main passion in the cosmetics industry is Skin Care - it is my first and true love! I mean, you can't have a gorgeous face of makeup without a great complexion right? So when Pammy mentioned this site to me I was intrigued and eager to try it out!

The Concept

This is a site that focuses on getting you better skin care. Not only does it focus on better skin care, but it is completely unbiased advice on skin care! It is so hard to find advice based on your skin without someone trying to sell you something and you know what that means - if someone is trying to sell you something, it isn't always the right thing for your skin. (NOTE: not all products being sold to you are wrong, but some sales people can mislead you - or even be mislead themselves by their company and the end result may not be right for your skin - Remember, this is my experience and opinions :) ) BUT what MySkin.com does is takes out that bias of "selling" and gives you access to a large variety of products that are scientifically researched by the MySkin team to be good for your skin type - then, you choose what you want to try! (You don't have to buy anything from them - they only suggest!) 

They have a very comprehensive questionnaire about your skin so they can understand what it needs. You can also upload your current routine and how each product is working for you so they can take that information as well and adapt the products they suggest to you. Here is a sample of what my profile and current routine look like:


It is really easy to sign up and get started creating your own routine! All you do is go to www.myskin.com and it will automatically prompt you to "Register", it's totally free and you can have a lot of fun exploring others profiles, having discussions with others about skin care and looking at their blog list of great beauty blogs you may not know about! 

The best way to explain this site is for you to go check it out for yourself! Its very easy to navigate and learn so have fun! :)

Monday, January 17, 2011

Rimmel Lasting Finish Foundation


Hey ladies! I hope everyone had a great start to their week! I've been catching up on some blog posts as I had a busy day yesterday at a Bridal Show (for my friend, not myself haha)! So, I have an obsession with obtaining the perfect complexion and the necessary products to achieve that (skincare, foundation, concealer, powders - anything "corrective"). Here is one of my latest attempts to find my ultimate foundation!

This is Rimmel's Lasting Finish 25 Hour Foundation. First off, who in the world wants their makeup to last 25 hours? And who is awake for that long? lol I guess they are just trying to emphasize that it is a "long lasting" foundation, but still, I couldn't get over the 25 hour claim! 

This foundation is inexpensive and available everywhere. I got mine at Shoppers Drug Mart when it was on sale for about $5, which is a great price! I'm not sure if you can tell yet - but this foundation isn't my favourite. That is NOT to say that it isn't a good foundation though! I have oily skin thats prone to breakouts so I need a mattifying formulation that isn't too thick but still gives a great coverage (I think I'm asking a lot haha). This foundation has a thicker consistency that feels really moisturizing and the "dewy" feeling doesn't really go away like some other foundations. This doesn't fly with me! (but honestly would be fantastic for someone with dry skin!) I hate "feeling" my makeup on my face and I can really "feel" this one because of my oily skin - it just isn't a good combination! 


With the texture not being for my skin type, I must say that the colour (True Ivory) is perfect for my skin tone and the look of the finish is gorgeous! I would definitely recommend this for anyone with normal to dry skin! I think the shade selection is really great (they don't have those harsh pink undertones or orange undertones!) This also lives up to its claim of "lasting" even on my oily skin. The colour didn't fade all day and everything that needed to be covered, stayed covered! This formula applies well without streaking, blends well and provides a really great finish (I applied with both my fingers and a sponge and both came out great!). Even with setting powder this didn't "set" for me and stayed a little liquid-y on my face (which I'm sure is only due to my excessive oiliness!). 

From an objective point of view, this is a great foundation formula! Even if it isn't for me I can recognize a great formulation! So overall, if you have any skin type that isn't oily, check this out! :)

Saturday, January 15, 2011

I Received the Stylish Blogger Award!


Another quick post for this cold & snowy Saturday morning! A few days ago I was lucky enough to be awarded with the Stylish Blogger Award by my friend Priscilla at MakeupJunkie88! She is such a sweet girl and has an amazing blog so be sure to check her out and give her a follow! :)

The "Rules":
1. Thank and link back to who gave you the award
2. Share 7 things about yourself
3. Pass it along to 7 blog you've recently discovered and enjoy
4. Leave your recipient a note, telling them about the award

Oh, jeeze here we go again with the random facts! haha I'm pretty sure I am running out!

1. I have a tattoo that no one knows about! Its on my ribs (over my heart) and is my families first initials which spell out the word "Bliss" - pretty amazing that happened haha there is also a little heart at the end! :)

2. I love to take baths! They are so relaxing, I'm not sure how I lived without a bath tub for so long! (And thank you Lush for making my baths that much better! haha)

3. I watch a lot of junk TV. Teen Mom, Jersey Shore, Maury, Jerry Springer! Lol you name a junky TV show and I watch it! (Remember Flavour of Love? I loved that show! lol)

4. I prefer salty over sweet! If I ever have a snack it's going to be chips. I actually dislike candy, I don't know what it is but meh. But I do love Chocolate! 

5. I never "do" my hair. I couldn't tell you the last time I used my straightener. I'm lucky enough that when I throw it up into a bun, its the perfect texture and thickness to look like I spent hours on it! haha People always compliment me on it and I'm like "I'm not sure I even looked in the mirror before I came out!" haha

6. I'm addicted to water!! That's all I drink, I don't really like pop or juice or flavoured water. But I will drink 8 glasses of water just in the morning alone! But I hate tap water, it tastes like chlorine!

7. I drive a lot. Everything is so far away in this city! On average, I'm in my car for at least 2 hours a day! (And I hate every second of it!)

Okay, that was hard and probably not amusing at all lol! Its also hard to pick only 7 blogs so I'm not going to! I think all of you deserve this award because you are all such stylish bloggers!! :) So congratulations - feel free to say I gave this to you personally haha! 



Maybelline - Expert Wear Blush

Expert Wear Blushes
Good morning everyone! I have been so behind on my blogging for a multitude of reasons! Mostly camera problems and lighting but I've also been busy getting back into school! So today is my "dedicated to blogging day!" and I'm going to try to get a ton of posts done for the week to come and for today! :)

First up is a couple of my newly favourite blushes! One of these blushes is another item from Pammy at Pammy Blogs Beauty and our makeup swap! I had never tried Maybelline blushes before but I know she loves this blush and anted to share it with me too! :)



This is the blush that Pammy sent me! It's Maybelline Expert Wear Blush in Sweet Cinnamon. This is a gorgeous shade that I think would look great on so many skin tones! It has an amazing shimmer/sheen to it that in no way looks glittery or overly sparkly! It is also a great shade that is hard to describe - It is definitely more of a peach but has a pink undertone to make it good for everyone! I don't have many peach toned blushes so I was very happy to get this one! I usually go for more pink tones but I'm starting to realize that peaches can look just as great on my skin tone! 



This is the blush I picked up after falling in love with my first Maybelline blush! This is Maybelline Expert Wear Blush in Plushed Plum. This one is infinitely different from the Sweet Cinnamon blush! This colour is matte but with enough sheen to not look chalky on the skin. It also is a gorgeous different colour than any colour I've had before! I would describe it as a pink/plum but nothing too purple to be unwearable. It actually gives the cheeks a gorgeous flush that looks really natural! I love this when I don't want too much shimmer on my cheeks or if I have excessive shimmer somewhere else haha!


Both are gorgeous and extremely different from each other! The best part about these blushes is I picked mine up for... Wait for it... $1.59! Unheard of! haha Thank you Rexall for your great sales! These blushes are still a great price even when they aren't on clearance at around $4.99 each - and they are definitely worth more! As you may be able to tell from this photo, the Sweet Cinnamon has more pigmentation than the Plushed Plum. I assume it has to do with the finishes, shimmer vs. matte. You can still build up an amazing colour with the Plushed Plum, it just takes more than one swipe! (Personally, I like that in a blush because I'm prone to over applying! haha) These both have a luxurious feel and are super soft with no chalky appearance. I often overlook Maybelline but now that I know their quality is so great, I will definitely not be passing by the Maybelline section! :)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Tried & True Recipes (Tag!)


Good Morning everyone! Today I'm doing something a little different. Pammy from Pammy Blogs Beauty created a new tag where people from all over can share their tried & true recipes! I think this a great idea because I am always struggling to find new recipes to make and often get stuck in a rut and make the same things over and over! I'm definitely looking forward to seeing everyone else's recipes and trying them out for myself! :)

So, that being said here is MY favourite recipe that I make all too often (although it is so good that I can't help it!). Originally this recipe came from my boyfriends mother but I tweaked it a little bit to suit our tastes! This is going to be hard to write down because I do it from memory and just sort of dump ingredients in!

By the way, you can make this recipe more health conscious by using low-fat or non-fat milk (and no Half & Half) as well as low fat cheeses and whole wheat pasta! I have done it both ways and the only difference is the texture of the sauce with low fat cheeses isn't quite as smooth - it still tastes amazing! 

PS - My instructions may seem long but I'm just being thorough! It's not actually hard! 

Baked Macaroni & Cheese

This recipe creates a LOT of Mac & Cheese! It fits in a 9x11 pan.

1/2 - 3/4 Bag of Any Pasta (the large bags) I use Rigatoni
1 small White/Yellow Onion (chopped)
2 Tbsp Butter (or Margarine)
1/2 Cup Swiss Cheese (shredded)
1/2 Monterey Jack Cheese (shredded)
1/2 Extra Old Cheddar (shredded)
1 Cup Medium Cheddar or Marble Cheese (cubed or shredded)
1 Small Container of Half & Half (You can omit and just use milk if you want!)
1 Cup Milk
2 Tbsp Flour (Or so - this is just to thicken)
1/4 Tsp Dried Mustard
Pepper

Honestly, I have changed this recipe so much that it was really hard to find the measurements! A lot of the measurements don't really matter though because they are more for taste than for the cohesion of the recipe! :)

Heat Oven to 350 degrees F. 

What you will need:

1. A Large Pot (the biggest you have!)
2. A Large Pan (the biggest you have!) - enough to hold 3 cups of liquid.
3. A 9x11 Glass Baking Pan (the kind you make brownies in)
4. A Glass (liquid) Measuring Cup
5. A Set of Dry Measuring Cups
6. A Set of Measuring Spoons
7. A Cutting Board - Knife
8. Cheese Shredder
9. Extra Mixing Spoons (plastic works best - wood ones kind of soak up the cheese sauce!)
10. Strainer

Directions: Please read them through before you start! :)

1. Chop onion (whatever size pieces you prefer!). At this point, shred all your cheeses so they are ready for later as well! Heat a large pan (not a pot!) to medium/hot (around 7 if your dial has numbers!). Add your 2 tbsp of Butter or Margarine and melt. Add your onion and cook until translucent - try not to brown them! Depending on the size of your onion, or the amount you decided to use,  you may need to add some more butter. You will be able to tell because you need some extra butter still in the pan after the onions are cooked - so if your onions have completely absorbed the butter add a little more at the end. Next you need to add your 2 Tbsp of flour to create a Rue - this is the base of the sauce. Cook the butter, onion, flour mixture for about a minute - it should look like a paste. 

2. Start a large pot of water on high heat - add some salt and a dash of olive oil so the noodles don't stick together. While the water begins to boil, add your small container of half & half as well as your 1 cup of Milk. You will want your burner to be on medium. Stir and bring back up to a boil so it starts to thicken. If you notice it isn't thickening after one minute of boiling add another tsp of flour and boil for another minute. You just want a thick base. This is also total preference because some people prefer a runny sauce while others prefer a thick sauce so add flour to your preferred thickness! 

3. If your water is boiling, add the pasta and cook according to package instructions. While your pasta is cooking, and if your sauce is to your desired thickness, turn off the heat under your sauce. Add your pepper to taste and your dried mustard powder.Next, take your shredded cheeses and add them one by one. You can cube or shred the cheese it just melts faster if you shred it! Make sure it completely melts into the sauce before you add the next cheese. Keep stirring until all your cheeses have melted! Make sure to taste it at this point to see if it is to your liking! 

TIP: When you melt cheese it loses flavour, so if you want a very cheesy Mac & Cheese, use all Sharp or Old cheddar instead of the medium cheddar!

4. This is where I take the time to adjust the sauce to how I want it to taste. You can add more Swiss or add more mild cheddar it's totally up to you! By the way, the mustard powder may sound strange but it just enhances the taste of cheese, you can't actually taste mustard. So, if you don't have anymore cheese, add a tiny bit more mustard powder to intensify the taste! Next, drain your pasta and add it to your 9x11 pan. Pour your cheese sauce over your pasta and mix it a bit. Extra: I like to add some more shredded cheese on top but it's totally optional!

5. Place in your preheated 350 degree oven uncovered for 20 minutes. Take it out and enjoy!

I hope this recipe works out for you all! It's really hard to mess it up haha (trust me I'm a terrible cook!), as long as you get the "Rue" correct so your sauce thickens you will be good! 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Sonia Kashuk Creme Blush


Good morning ladies! If you have been following my blog posts or tweets, you may know that I adore cream blushes! I feel like they give me a very realistic flush of colour and add an extra layer of colour for under powder blushes (just in case they begin to fade through the day!). I also don't like the chalky appearance some powder blushes can leave behind and the intense shimmer that a lot of them contain! I have fairly oily skin so that shimmer doesn't do me any favours! ;)


What is this?

This is Sonia Kashuk Creme blush in Blossom - 03. Now, being from Canada I have no access to the Sonia Kashuk range :( but thanks to my good friend Pammy over at Pammy Blogs Beauty I was able to get my hands on some! If you don't know, Pammy and I had a pre-holidays swap in December where I sent here items only available in Canada and she sent my items from the States! I love that we do this because I don't often go to the states and hate to pay the through-the-roof shipping fees of most sites! I specifically requested something from the Sonia Kashuk range because it looks so high end without being so high-end priced and I was extremely curious! Pammy picked the best possible item (she knows I love Cream Blushes!!) and in a (what I think is) universally flattering shade! 


Onto the colour, this is a very neutral, skin-toned pink. It provides a subtle flush and changes to a powder finish once applied - unlike most other cream blushes I have used! It also has a very subdued shimmer which shows up on the face as more of a healthy sheen. I love that because most cream blushes rely on a dewy/wet finish for their sheen and sometimes that doesn't translate well onto oily skin (or wear well for that matter!) 


Here I have it swatched next to a few of my closest in colour cream blushes. Oddly enough, in the pan it looks closest in colour to Stila Convertible Colour in Lily (2nd swatch) but when applied to skin they look NOTHING alike! I would say that the Sonia Kashuk Creme Blush in Blossom is closest to Stila Convertible colour in Hibiscus (LE) (3rd swatch) with it also being very close to MAC Blushcreme in Ladyblush. They major differences between them is the texture, sheen and dewy feeling. I think the Sonia Kashuk Creme Blushes are better suited to oily skins and the MAC Blushcreme for drier skins! (Stila Convertible Colours are good for any skin type as they are not too "dewy"). The SK blush also seems to have less pigmentation than the others so it would be great for a subtle finish or for people inexperienced with cream blushes (its hard to over do it!).

Overall, I LOVE this blush! I like it more than my MAC Blushcremes because of the powder finish on my oily skin and although I don't know the price, I assume it is much more affordable than MAC and Stila! Next time you are at Target (pretty sure thats where it is sold haha) be sure to check these out! They are definitely worth a try!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Deals & Steals: Wet N' Wild Color - Icon Single Shadows

Nutty (left), Brulee (right)
Hello ladies! Hope your week is going well so far! I have been busy catching up on everyones blogs this last week or so after my little break over the holidays and have been learning about some great drugstore finds! A few "Best Of" posts that I read recently (sorry don't remember the blogs exactly!) have mentioned these little guys - the Wet N' Wild Color Icon Single Shadows! I'm sure you have all heard the raves about Wet N' Wild's Color Icon 6 pan palettes, especially the holiday LE shades - these are the same shadows but in single form (and bigger!). 

These are an amazing deal, and when I say amazing, I mean AMAZING! Where else can you find single eyeshadows for $2.77 each with such amazing pigmentation and silky smooth application? I'll tell you.. NOWHERE! haha I was leery to initially try the Wet N' Wild brand. I used it in junior high and high school when I wasn't really into makeup and didn't want to spend any money on it. I remembered it being okay, I liked the eyeliners but since using new products they had definitely been pushed to the way side. What made my try the brand again is the success I've had with another inexpensive brand - NYC. I was also leery to try them, as I always am with inexpensive makeup products, I tended to believe you got what you paid for! NOT TRUE! NYC is a great brand with a few of their products being a staple in my everyday routine - and honestly, I think everything they sell is under $5! 



Anyways! Back to the review! I am very glad I finally decided to pick these up, I got the colours Nutty and Brulee - after hearing these were the best two shades! (Plus I love neutral colours!)


Nutty - This is an amazing medium brown shade with a great sheen! There is no noticeable shimmer or glitter but it has such a pretty finish! It is almost the same finish as a MAC Velvet! This would be a great everyday colour and very work appropriate! It has great colour pay off and wears really well over an eyeshadow primer! Seriously, I would pay 3x as much for this shadow (Shhh! Don't tell Wet N' Wild lol) because of its fantastic colour and texture!


Brulee - This is going to be an incredibly versatile shadow in my collection! It is completely matte with no sheen, shimmer or glitter but isn't at all chalky! This colour is great as a base, highlight or to blend out harsh edges and blend together colours!  The colour is extremely close to my skin tone when applied so this is perfect for me! This is a must have in anyones makeup collection and for $2.77 - you really can't go wrong! 


These two colours look especially pretty together as well! This is in daylight/no-flash, hopefully you can see the sheen of Nutty! I am more than impressed with these and will definitely be keeping my eye open at the Wet N' Wild section from now on!

Have you tried the Wet N' Wild Singles? What do you think? Any other great products from them that I need to know about? :)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Vintage Cosmetic Commercials

Hey Ladies! I came across these today while surfing YouTube, thought you might enjoy them! Man how things have (and haven't *cough cough* Cover Girl!) changed! :)










OMG I just bought the Almay one and thought it was SUCH an innovation! lol This is from 1981!

Well, at least all these girls look real and not airbrushed right? :)

Back To MAC Haul!


Hey everyone! First off, I'm sorry for quality of these photos, I'm not sure why but my camera didn't want to focus and the lighting was bad but not bad enough for flash so these are what resulted! haha

I was recently going through my drawers and reorganizing all my makeup and found my bag of empty MAC containers! I had totally forgotten about them and was so excited to bring them Back To MAC for some new goodies! So, this is the first time I have ever done the Back To MAC recycling program and wasn't entirely sure how it worked but I learned a few things!

BACKGROUND INFO

First, 6 empty "Primary" MAC containers gets you a free product, even if they are depotted (I wasn't sure so I thought I would let you all know!). Which free product you get depends on where you return your containers. If you go to a MAC counter (inside The Bay in Canada) you get your choice of lipstick (excluding Viva Glam) for 6 empties - BUT if you go to a free standing MAC store you can have your choice of Eyeshadow, Original Lipglass or Lipstick. I think its great for MAC to have any recycling program, especially with such great benefits for us! Recycling their packaging is a great way for MAC to save money and for everyone to save the environment - Good on you MAC!

WHAT I GOT



My first item (which I paid for and was not part of the Back To MAC program) is the only thing I really liked from the Cham-Pale collection! I thought I would love the collection but in person it was so incredibly shimmery it just wasn't for me, and the colours weren't good on me either! :( BUT I managed to find this little gem! I have only even tried MAC tinted lip conditioners but heard really good things about the original. I have had a recent addiction to Lavender scents since I got my LAVANILA Lavender Vanilla perfume so this was amazing to me! It has a super subtle lavender scent so it isn't overpowering on the lips! I love the moisurization this gives! I put it on every night before bed and wake up with super hydrated lips - a definite must try!




Next up is the first item I got for free with my empties! If you follow me on twitter, you might know that I have been searching for a really deep blue eyeliner! I couldn't find any I really loved to I decided to pick up a dark blue shadow instead and use it with a liner brush. This is Contrast, a deep blue/purple Velvet eyeshadow that is 1000x prettier in real person than in the photo! I am super happy with this and it makes an amazing liner without having the harshness of black.





Last, but certainly not least, is a new Lipglass! I haven't bought a lipglass in I don't even know how long! I remember them being so incredibly sticky and gloopy that I had like 2 when I was 16 then none until now! I am pleasantly surprised that they are not nearly as sticky as I remember! They actually have a really nice feeling to them and some new gorgeous colours! I decided to go with a staple colour that I would wear everyday and just throw in my purse for anytime! This is Florabundance, as MAC describes it "a peachy blossom pink". Its a great combination of pink and peach and I think would flatter any skin tone! This one also has no shimmer and is fairly sheer, but none the less, gorgeous!

Well, there is my mini Back To MAC haul! As you can tell I had 12 empties so I got the eyeshadow and lipglass for free! I'm already starting to save up more because getting free MAC is definitely addicting! ;)

Have you used the Back To MAC recycling program? What have you got?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Going Gadgety! - Zeno Acne Device


Good Morning - again! I really have been catching up on my blogging and doing two or even three posts a day! I really am trying to limit myself but once I get on a role, I'm on a role!

This isn't a very long post - more of an introduction to a new product I just picked up, and have yet to use yet! 

First off, I suffer from pretty mild, occasional breakouts (which is what the Zeno device is intended for). It is also only intended for the red, inflamed blemishes, not the tiny white ones. Thanks to my Shoppers Optimum points and bonus cards and coupons, I was able to pick this up for $4! haha It runs $44.95 CAD for 80 uses (which I think will be MORE than enough to last me a good year or longer!) There is also a larger version that features changeable tips so you never have to buy a new device, just new tips but it runs $155 CAD. (on sale at SDM for $99 right now though!)


Anyways, this is a really cute little (PINK!) device that (as pictured above) you place on your blemish for the treatment time - 2.5mins - until it beeps and you are done. It heats up to kill all the acne bacteria in your skin and get rid of the blemish. Depending on the severity of the blemish you can treat it up to three times 4-12 hours apart. I'm pretty excited to try this out (although I have no blemishes right now, figures lol) because I only get occasional ones and if it helps with those I will be more than happy!


This little gadget has a bunch of indicator lights as well as an on/off button. It has four lights that tell you how many treatments you have left (Example, 4 lights = 60-80 treatments) as well as a power indicator light. It automatically shuts off after the treatment time and beeps every 30 seconds to let you know it is working.

I have high hopes for this little guy and will keep you updated on my progress! Check back for another "Going Gadgety" post on my new Clarisonic Mia! 

Have you tried this? Will you try it? Let me know!