Cosmetic Proof : January 2017 | Vancouver beauty, nail art and lifestyle blog

NAILS | Shel Silverstein "The Missing Piece" Nail Art #ManiMonday

Let me start by saying this is NOT my design, but that of Sarah from Chalkboard Nails! Ever since seeing in 4 years ago, I knew that at some point in my nail art hobby life I would have to pay tribute to one of my favourite childhood authors. My teachers used to read from Shel Silverstein's books all the time and though they were funny and rhymed, once you get older you realize that these poems definitely had MULTIPLE layers. I purchased the books in university and would refer to them when I needed a little spot of wisdom or just a friendly reminder that things were going to be just fine. 

Shel Silverstein "The Missing Piece" Nail Art

MAKEUP | Lise Watier Baiser Satin in Natural Kiss, Inferno Kiss and Red Hot Kiss Swatches and Review

I have been crushing on lip products lately and my theme has been "the brighter, the better"! With the beginning of the Lunar New Year this weekend, I feel even more invigorated to be more adventurous with lip colours though some mornings when it's 6am, it feels REALLY strange to be putting on a red hot lip!

While I have generally preferred wearing lipstick with gloss on top, the trend of ever pigmented liquid lipsticks continues and while I found the matte finishes finicky, the satin finish seems to be the happy medium that I can get on board with. The Lise Watier Baiser Satin ($28.00 CDN)) lipsticks are one of the most luscious formulas I have ever used! With a semi-matte finish the glides on smoothly, I don't ever find myself feeling the need to add moisture or exfoliate areas that are dry enough to peel!  

Lise Watier Baiser Satin Review and Swatches

NAILS | Year of the Rooster Lunar New Year Nails

For those of you celebrating this weekend, Happy New Year! Growing up, it was just my dad, mom, sister and I, so New Year celebrations in my house were always fairly quiet. My dad was the one who loved to celebrate by decorating the house and getting all of the traditional foods. Back then, I thought it was all so cheesy, but now that it's just me and my husband I miss it. It's funny how you take those family things for granted until you start a family of your own and you realize it's time to make your own traditions. I have never grown up in a "super Asian" environment, but now I wish I knew enough to carry on traditions without feeling lost and awkward. Not speaking Chinese never bothered me until I started working as I realized how valuable speaking multiple languages really was. This year, I vow to recover a little more of my heritage and have taught myself a few commonly used Mandarin words and phrases so wish me luck!

Year of the Rooster Lunar New Year Nail Art

MAKEUP LOOK | Celebrating the Lunar New Year with Charlotte Tilbury...and Blue Hair

I never really thought about the fact that I tend to do changes around Chinese/Lunar New Year. Last year, I changed my blog layout after 4 years and this year it seems I have gone blue. I will talk about my latest Aveda hair adventure after I see how the colour rinses out over the next few weeks, but for now you will have to bear with me as I struggle to find makeup and clothing that matches my Muppet locks!

Over the holidays, I had a Holt Renfrew gift card that I needed to spend which always leads me to the beauty section. I didn't want more skincare which meant makeup. Which meant the Charlotte Tilbury counter. I was a crazy big fan of the Hot Lips Lipsticks (review) and knew I wanted to add a beautiful red from the same series to my collection and it just so happened that Carina Lau was one of the newest additions to the Hot Lips celebrity family. Carina Lau is HUGE in Asian circles and though I haven't been following her career closely, all you have to do is say her name and everyone of all ages knows immediately who she is.

Charlotte Tilbury  Blue Hair Makeup Look

NAILS | Sally Hansen Color Therapy Swatch in "Therapewter"

Just a little swatchy swatch today to give me some time to think about some Chinese New Year nails! It is the year of the Rooster so I obviously want to draw a rooster somehow, but I'm not great at free-handing poultry so I may have to be "creative". I always love oddly coloured nail polish shades and Sally Hansen's Therapewter* is one of them! This is an olive, black shade with a metallic shimmer that is opaque in two lovely coats. It's a bit of a funny shade that I don't think everyone would wear, but its alien-like appeal is what I love about it.  

Sally Hansen Color Therapy Swatch Therapewter Review

MAKEUP | MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Sculpting Lip Pen in #40 Carmine Red

You know how I have this habit of talking about new things long after they have been out for what seems like eons in the beauty world? Well, this is going to be another one of those times with the MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Sculpting Lip Pen ($32.00 CDN)*! Remember this from last year? I took my beloved product photos and then never wore this beautifully sensual deep carmine red until I coloured my hair dark again. Once I had darker hair, I suddenly started craving deep reds, purples, magentas for my lips! Essentially all of the colours that I used to be afraid of are now making their way onto my lips! 

MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Sculpt Lip Carmine Red 40 Review Swatch

NAILS | Chrome Half Moon Gel Manicure #ManiMonday

It was a REALLY long work week for me so I apologize for pretty much just showing you my claws instead of anything else all of last week. Then I broke a nail on my photo hand, but thankfully I went so crazy with gel polish nail art experimentation this month that I have this super cool chrome half moon manicure to share with you until my index nail grows back! 

Chrome Half Moon Gel Polish Nail Art

NAILS | J & S Nails Gel Polish Swatch in SR3 Review

It is Chinese New Year on Jan 28th and I am on the hunt for some celebratory red polishes! I have never been one to fully celebrate CNY, but my work environment is very supportive of it so I have been paying more and more attention to the traditions involved. I realize I have been chatting about J & S Nails a lot since last month, but I have been so impressed with how easy their system is to use as well as the final results of their polishes, that I can't help but gravitate towards them! I know these were all PR samples, but seriously! These polishes have changed the way I think about gel polish and I hope all of you get a chance to check them out for yourselves!

J and S Nails Gel Polish Swatch in SR3 Review

MAKEUP LOOK | SHU UEMURA MURAKAMI COSMIC BLOSSOM EYE & CHEEK PALETTE IN COSMIKawaii WITH SWATCHES

I did this look way back in November and I wasn't too happy with it. I had just gotten both my hair done and eyebrows microbladed and things were just super dramatic. I wasn't sure which colours went well with my darker hair and as it turned out, the Cosmicool palette was a MUCH better fit for me which is why that look went up instead! Looking through these photos the other day, I realized that the Murakami Cosmic Blossom Eye and Cheek Cosmikawaii Palette ($85.00 CDN) is such a pretty little peach in a basket that it would be a shame not to share some swatches at least! 

Shu Uemura Murakami Cosmic Blossom Eye and Cheek Palette in Cosmikawaii Review Swatches

NAILS | Happy Anniversary to the Original Amino Acid Molecular Nails! #ManiMonday

Five years ago, I decided to try something that I had never seen before on nails - molecules. I planned for months what to do and finally decided on this. This was when I first started doing nail art and didn't know a lot of what I know now so I thought that on this anniversary, I'd clean up my cuticles, spruce up the colours and give you a non-blurry photo!

These nails have actually been copied a few times as well as mislabeled as "Feynmen Nails" which they are not! This idea gave much inspiration to a lot of the science nails I do and it was all done to show that just because you are a girl does not mean you can't love beauty AND be intelligent. When I was in school doing cell biology and later on computer science, being a girl was one thing, but being a girl that liked doing her nails or makeup? Obviously, that meant you spent more time on your looks than in your books! It also wasn't just men that treated me differently, but WOMEN too. It's like the ones that didn't wear makeup (which is fine!) thought I wasn't a hard worker and would coast on projects. Thankfully, I found some great people who were more progressive as well as a great boss in bioinformatics who loved genetics as much as handmade Italian shoes! So, here's to science, more money in science and women who can do it all!

Molecular Nerdy Nail Art

KOREAN BEAUTY | Peripera Peri's Ink in #5 No-Spoiler Swatches and Review

A personal, unwritten resolution of mine last year was to talk more about Korean beauty products since I have quite the personal collection! I am going to try and do one better this year and have a Korean beauty post every week so hopefully I can get into the routine of it! I find Korean makeup brands to be "not quite" as up there with North American brands when it comes to formulation and innovation, there are a few products that are either packaged so cutely or so talked about that I just have to run out (to my computer) and click "Complete Order"!

If there is one thing Korean beauty has down, it's the lip stain. Most Korean makeup looks involve just a hint of colour in the form of a gradient lip and I have to say that when I picked up the Peripera Peri's Ink in No-Spoiler, it was hands down so much more pleasant to use than any of the North American brands I had tried. This includes the luxe brands too! This is a long-wearing "tattoo-like" lip stain that promises comfort in addition to colour payoff and longevity. Let's see how it did!

Peripera Peri's Ink in No Spoiler Swatch Review

NAILS | Born Pretty Holographic Rainbow Powder Review

I have been seemingly having fun with the Born Pretty Store Rainbow Holographic Nail Powder* (1.5g/$2.99 USD), but it has been a TON of trial and error. It was not as easy for me as the instructions on the website and YouTube had depicted. In fact, my initial experience with this powder had me baffled as I just could not understand what I was doing wrong! I was literally doing what the videos were demonstrating and yet I was having so many issues making the powder stick to the nail surface. I have outlined three of my 17 attempts with the final photos being the ones that showcase a method that worked all the time. Come with me on this magical journey filled with unicorn dust...

Born Pretty Holographic Powder Review

NAILS | Sally Hansen Color Therapy Green and Gold Half Moons #ManiMonday

I am just shocked at myself for not using more Sally Hansen polishes last year as this was practically the brand that got me into nail art! Sally Hansen always has so many solid creme shades that make them wonderful for dotting or as a foundation for other nail art. In the summer of last year, Sally Hansen introduced their new Color Therapy line which includes argan, acai and evening primrose oil in their actual nail polish formulations to condition and strengthen nails while having an awesome-looking manicure! Call me old-fashioned, but when it comes to nail polish, it's always going to be one of those beauty products that IS harmful. We are all trying our best to make it LESS harmful, but until the day comes when you can drink the bottle or apply it to your skin with no ill effects, a formulation with as few bad things as we can spare is what we are going to have to settle for!

Green and Gold Half Moon Nail Art

FASHION | Charlotte Olympia Mid Century Glitter Kitty Flats

This is for all you shoppers out there! After getting my first pairs of Jimmy Choos last year, I said that I would hold off until 2017 to get any more designer shoes. Well, I held out until Black Friday thanks to a friend of a friend of mine who knew about these Charlotte Olympia Mid Century Glitter Kitty Flats going on sale for 50% off at The Room in The Bay! I LOVE cats and in addition to the Jimmy Choos, I have always wanted a pair of these infamous kitty shoes, but $675 for whimsical kitty shoes just felt like a touch too much for me so when they went on sale INMYSIZE I pretty much walked them home!

Charlotte Olympia Mid Century Glitter Kitty Flats

HAIR | Shu Uemura Murakami Wonder Worker, Essence Absolue Nourishing Oil and Cleansing Oil Shampoo

It is only in recent years that I have started upping my haircare game. While I have my drugstore hair favourites, the luxury hair game is still something I am trying to wrap my head around because ingredients can't be compared in the same way as luxury skincare. I don't really know how hair works other than "add moisture when dry" since hair is pretty much dead by the time it is out of your scalp. I received a few Shu Uemura hair products to try out last year, but for some reason always had a reason to pass them over. Maybe I have become slightly jaded with hair products. After trying so many, it's hard to believe one can make a serious difference in my life. Well, it seems I need to eat my words.

Shu Uemura Hair Review

NAILS | Rainbow Glitter Highlighter Nails

I have been DYING to try rainbow glitter highlighter nails since last summer ever since watching this video from Simpy Nailogical. I ran into some issues with the glitter I chose so I may try again once I find the perfect one. I knew I had to have at least one fairly opaque holo glitter in my stash and decided on Floss Gloss - Dimepiece. I picked this up years ago with a couple of other colours, but because the shipping was so ridiculous to Canada for these 5.5mL bottles, I have not added to my Floss Gloss stash since.   

Rainbow Glitter Highlighter Nail Art

PETS | What Hugo and Hemingway Got for Christmas

Honestly, I could talk about my furbabies all the time and fill my Instagram feed with my kitties, but I have to remind myself that not everyone likes to see cats every single day (though I do seriously judge people who don't like animals). I like dogs too, but I love the fact that cats are low maintenance (at least the domestic short-haired ones) and charmingly aloof. I love that I have to WORK for their affection and that they have their likes and dislikes. I have had cats all of my life and I have learned that you can spend a hell of a lot of money on toys and plush beds only to discover that they would rather play with an empty mascara box or an aluminum foil ball tied to the end of a piece of string. Needless to say, cats are picky and kind of jerks sometimes though I still cannot resist spoiling these little buggers in the hopes that I will see them chase after their favourite toy! 

Avon Cat Gifts Review

NAILS | Starting off 2017 with Some Sunshine! #ManiMonday

My nails have been a little burnt out from the non-stop manicures (thank God for peel-off base coat!) and with hosting a family dinner at our place last night, I decided to forego the complicated 3 hour nail art session and instead veg and find a unique glitter polish in my collection that I had yet to try. I have WAY too many untrieds and found an old Beyond the Nail indie glitter called "Vintage Dress" that had shimmery yellow flower-shaped glitter sitting in a clear base that felt like the way to go. I also managed to find the PERFECT matching yellow polish which literally looks like sunshine in a bottle in the form of CND Creative Play - Foilded Again*

CND Foiled Again Beyond the Nail Vintage Dress Swatch

SKINCARE | Surviving Winter Stress (and Donald Trump) with Odacite Facial Serums

Well, well Happy New Year and welcome to 2017! Like everyone else, I will say that yes 2016 went by very quickly and thank goodness for my "achievement jar" or I would never have remembered a number of things that happened last year! I seem to have some sort of mental block prior to May and often use this very blog as a diary of sorts to pinpoint what I was up to! Though I was really tired for most of the year, most of the negativity from the year emanated from work and has been remedied in the recent months by the exiting of bitchy behaviour and strengthening moral support by co-workers. Now, I'm just scared of Trump and what 2017 will look like, but at least my skin will survive! 

Odacite Facial Serum Review