SKINCARE | Farmacy Green Clean Makeup Meltaway Cleansing Balm

Apologies for the almost week long absence. I had a 22 hour work weekend which ended with me getting sick with a fever Sunday night to Tuesday. I was still pretty sick today and missed two events which I would have loved to share with you, but I DID survive my work day. There was a lot going on so I just hid in my office with a Mickey Mouse face mask and my Saje diffuser running. The last couple of days have been about keeping things really simple and clean and though I am sad that I lost a week of Lunar February posts, I will end the month with one from a brand that I really love and haven't talked about in awhile - Farmacy

SKINCARE | My Beauty Diary 2 Step Asia Brightening Pack #LunarFebruary

How is there only one week left of February?! Granted the last two weeks after I got back from my staycation have been a whirlwind at work and where I have felt only a few days have passed, it has been two weeks. I look back and I don't even know what I have been doing. I haven't had much time to play with my beauty babies and even though I held onto my blogging streak for 15 days straight, I finally crashed around Chinese New Year and allowed myself to go down the #VirtueMoir rabbit hole.

My Beauty Diary Asia 2 Step Brightening Pack Review

MAKEUP | New Shades of Dior Addict Lip Glow Color Reviver Balm!

Last year, Dior came out with a more pigmented shade of their Lip Glow Color Reviver Balm in Berry and now there are more! Introducing two new finishes and new shades, these Lip Glows ($41.00 CDN) are kind of a relief to see after seasons of matte finishes and are the easiest lip products to use when you don't feel like fussing over applying lipstick, but want a little bit of hydrating colour for an MLBB look.  

Dior Addict Lip Glow Swatches and Review

SKINCARE | Elizavecca Water Lock Hydrogel Melting Mask #LunarFebruary

Do you know where I found this sheet mask? Right in the aisle of my local London Drugs! Some of you may have noticed that London Drugs has started carrying Korean beauty brands like Mizon, The Face Shop and now Elizavecca! The selection tends to change and I am never able to find the same things twice, but pricing is reasonable and I don't have to wait a month for things to ship from South Korea!

I last featured Elizavecca in January (here) with their hydrogel eye mask which was fun, but I didn't find great for value. I picked up the Water Lock Hydrogel Melting Mask because packaging was cute and because I do love a good hydrogel mask! 

Elizavecca Water Lock Hydrogel Melting Mask Review

NAILS | Happy Year of the Dog! #LunarFebruary

Ahhh, sorry this is so late, but work this week has been making me want to cry and it won't end until the end of this month which makes me want to cry a little more. Does anyone else have a job like this? I am definitely working a job that has an expiration date, but it is financially comfortable yet mentally exhausting so for now it will just have to do. I realized that I hadn't done my nails since the last ManiMonday which I had pre-done almost two weeks ago so it was time for a change. I didn't even get a chance to do Valentine's Day nails because I honestly forgot! I did think that Lunar New Year nails were in order so I found this quick and easy 101 Dalmatians-themed manicure from @juliajor and gave it go!

MAKEUP | Givenchy Lunar New Year Collection #LunarFebruary

How many of you are celebrating the Lunar New Year with friends and family this weekend? In my last post, I had mentioned how nostalgic I felt this year with memories of intimate family dinners, but this year, we are all doing our own thing so messages via text are as close as it will get this year in addition to a message from my dad to have kids soon as that he can spoil them with red pockets. Subtle Dad, subtle.

Many of you may have seen the beautiful Lunar New Year products that have come out, but I have to say that the prettiest pieces I have seen this year come from Givenchy with their Prisme Libre Loose Powder and Le Rouge Intense Color Lipstick! Not only are these pieces red, but feature a stunning silver-embossed genuine printed leather! 

Givenchy Lunar New Year Prisme Libre and Le Rouge Review and Swatches

MAKEUP | Christian Louboutin Limited Edition Lunar New Year Gift Set #LUNARFEBRUARY

Growing up in Vancouver, Chinese New Year, or the Lunar New year, as I now need to call it because it's the new year for more than just Chinese people, is HUGE. When I first immigrated to Canada in 1988, there were virtually no Chinese people. My family and I were struggling immigrants, my parents worked hard to give my sister and I a home, clothes and toys. We were on our own save for the handful of people we knew and integrating into "white" society was how my family and I chose to survive. My parents spoke to my sister and I ONLY in English which in retrospect was a mistake as being multilingual will ALWAYS be an asset, but I think my parents were afraid that we would be ostracized just by the colour of our skin.

Thankfully, Vancouver was very open to all cultures and I wish now that we had spoken Mandarin at home. The closest I have to any Asian language is understanding child level Hokkien (kudos to those of you who know what that is!), but as Vancouver has gotten more and more Chinese immigrants, I have never been so acutely aware of what animal we are celebrating this year. The Lunar New Year is bigger now than I ever remember it in Canada and I can't help, but miss the small intimate family celebration we used to have just the four of us. I almost want to go to T&T and pick up all that food just for hubs and me!

Limited Edition Lunar New Year Gift Set from Christian Louboutin Beauty

SKINCARE | Getting Rose-y with Pixi Beauty

Mmmm long were we as Canadians waiting for this brand to make its way over to our neck of the woods? I remember doing pen pal swaps with beauty lovers in the UK and the US just to get my hands on Pixi makeup and now I can just walk into my local Shoppers Drug Mart and grab all of my coveted favourite products!

When it comes to skincare, Pixi has some GOOD stuff. Ingredients are good and the products get the job done. Glow Tonic is a cult classic from the brand and I haven't talked about it on the blog because I think it is a product that gets a lot of attention as is (kind of like Hello Kitty), but if ya'll want me to break down the ingredients and do a litmus paper test, I will! 

Pixi Beauty Rose Flash Balm Caviar Essence Rose Oil Blend Review

HAIR | Wise - Canadian, Healthy and Eco-Conscious #CBBgetsWise

I always love supporting Canadian brands and if they are green and eco-friendly it is even better! Based in Montreal, Quebec, Wise launched just this past September and began when a barber colleague noticed that a number of his clients were seeking eco-conscious and healthy hair products. 

This is a men's care line that I am tempted to call "green beauty" as all packaging is recyclable, ingredients are free of artificial fragrances and colors, MEA, DEA or TEA, parabens, phthalates, and sulfates and products are vegetarian (there is beeswax in the pomades).  I loved the minimalist packaging and dishwasher-safe jars the moment I saw them and though I couldn't really use all of the products, my husband gladly became the guinea pig!

Wise Men's Care Essentials Kit Review

NAILS | MINISO Has Nail Polish? #LunarFebruary

That's right. In addition to a plethora of inexpensive, but decent makeup, MINISO also has nail polish which I OBVIOUSLY had to pick try. The bottles had Aerin-esque pink stone-like caps and are normally around $2 for 15mL of polish. Most of the shades I saw in the store were fairly neutral, feminine shades including this mauve shimmery beauty.   

MINISO Purple Nail Polish Swatch

KBEAUTY | Peripera "Ah Much Real" Cushion Blusher in Happy Coral #LunarFebruary

I think other than Apieu and possibly Etude House, Peripera is probably the next most plentiful Korean brand in my makeup collection not only for their fun packaging and fun shades, but the actual quality of the products are so similar in consistency to my high end products that I feel like I am having fun and getting a quality product all in one!

One thing that Korean makeup always excels at is cushion ANYTHING. Honestly, North American cushion foundations don't hold a candle next to the Korean ones and the same goes for cushion blushes. I don't use cushion blushers a lot because I am always terrified that my foundation will lift, but I could not say no to the cuteness of this Peripera Cushion Blusher and its cute little girl with perfect cheeks.    

Peripera "Ah Much Real" Cushion Blusher in Happy Coral

BEAUTY BOX | Avon A Box "The Power of Pink"

It's not just during Valentine's that I like pink. I am generally quite feminine and have to control myself when it comes to how much pink is actually in my life because we all know how it looks when your bedroom, clothes and accessories look like they've been lifted from the set of "Legally Blonde'. I have secretly always wanted a fluffy pink pom pom pen especially back when I used to be in the Organic Chem lab. Would YOU trust the girl writing down her crystal yields with a fluffy pen? THAT'S what I thought.

So, Avon has been killin' it with these A Boxes and though I haven't had a chance to show you all of them yet, I think they are such a lovely way to get introduced to Avon and what their products are all about because ladies and gents, there are some serious winners in these A Boxes! 

Avon A Box

SKINCARE | Kanebo Evita Beauty Whip Soap aka the Rose-Shaped Cleanser! #LunarFebruary

There are some beauty products that I stalk like crazy and when my husband showed me a clip of the Kanebo Evita Beauty Whip Soap on Reddit two years ago, I knew I had to have it and you will see why later on in the post because the skintertainment factor for this Japanese cleanser is through the roof!

Kanebo Evita Beauty Whip Soap Review

BATH & BODY | The Lush Valentine's Day Collection

I said on Twitter that I would focus less on Valentine's Day posts and more on Asian brands with the exception of Lush. I cannot say no to their seasonal collections and I feel like this year there are so many new things that even those who are boycotting Valentine's would have to pick up just for the sake of cuteness!

Lush Valentine's Day Collection

MAKEUP LOOK | The Maybelline Total Temptation Collection

I will admit that even though I normally go for eyeshadow palettes first, with the Maybelline Total Temptation Collection, I went eye-first for the coconut-scented mascara! This new collection is all about bold brows, full lashes and smokey eyes that can be worn during the day and at night. I have always had good luck with Maybelline so I was anxious to dive into the collection and give it a test drive!

The Maybelline Total Temptation Collection

SKINCARE | For Beloved Girl Extreme Moisture Mineral Cloud Silk Mask #LunarFebruary

Two weeks ago, I reviewed the For Beloved Girl Skin Renewal Silk Mask and loved it so I thought I would continue with my thoughts on the other five masks in the FBG series especially this one that I have been using during the dry winter months - the Extreme Moisture Cloud Silk Mask* (3 pcs/$12.99 CDN)! The focus of this mask is obviously moisture with a focus on sodium hyaluronate to give thirsty skin so much needed hydration. Let's see how different/similar this was to the last FBG mask I tried!

For Beloved Girl Extreme Moisture Mineral Cloud Silk Mask

NAILS | Pantone Purplicious #ManiMonday

I have been on a staycation for just over a week now and though I have managed to put up a blog post every day since then, I feel like I haven't gotten as much done as I had planned. I vacuumed once, booked a service appointment for my car and baked cookies. I have been trying my hardest to catch up on some long lost blog work and honestly, there are only so many hours in the day that I can sit at a computer and type at home. I get distracted easily and though I have been challenging myself to get up early and get blogging in the morning, I find the opposite has been happening. I am going to bed anywhere from 1-2am with my mind still buzzing for things that need to be done for the next day. It's like I can never seem to get organized which is kind of disheartening. One thing I do still manage to set aside time for is ManiMonday so though there is nothing complicated with today's manicure, I still think this is a delicious mani to start off the week!

Pantone Purplicious Avon Gel Finish Nail Art

LOOK | A $17 Face Full of MINISO Makeup #LunarFebruary

Like many of you, I was pretty excited when Japanese lifestyle designer brand MINISO made its way into Canada and when it finally came to Vancouver I was there with the crowd to shop this brand with a reputation for low cost, but high quality goods. I can attest to their underwear, T-shirts and pantyhose being fantastic, but their beauty department was what I was MOST interested in trying because there can be some surprises (good, bad or ugly) when it comes to inexpensive beauty products so in honor of #LunarFebruary, I put my face to the test and had some surprising results!   

Miniso Makeup Look

HAIR | 3 Things from Shu Uemura Art of Hair I am Loving #LunarFebruary

A few days ago, I brought up on Twitter whether instead of the same old Valentine's Day stories, I should dedicate this ENTIRE month to featuring Asian brands in honor of the Lunar New Year and many of you responded very positively so here is my first brand -  Shu Uemura! Obviously, this is a very well known luxury brand (I will feature some fun Korean beauty brands too this month!) and I adore their makeup, skincare and a number of their hair products. Their cleansing shampoo is one of my favourites and when my hair feels lost and confused, I tend to use this as a reset button because of its attention to colour-treated hair. While I am perfectly comfortable using drugstore haircare products, there is something about luxury hair products that make my hair feel extra special.

Shu Uemura Art of Hair Review

EVENT | The Estee Lauder Spring 2018 Preview

I have mentioned before that I do not often do event posts, but the last one I did for London Drugs (here) seemed to be well-received so I figured I would try to share a glimpse of what happens at media events and what we as bloggers are privy to. Some events are either at night where the light is not great or it's REALLY crowded so getting photos can be a challenge, but today at the Estee Lauder Spring preview I had the whole place to myself!

Yesterday's preview took place at one of my favourite hotels in Vancouver - the Rosewood Hotel Georgia, which is where my husband and I treat ourselves almost every anniversary because it is just one of the nicest hotels in Vancouver! The actual event took place in one of the penthouse suites on the top floor and when I walked in, I was immediately greeted with a chocolate wall of lips to showcase the lauch of the new Pure Color Liquid Envy glosses! We will get to that later, but the highlight of the preview was the new Perfectionist Pro which is an anti-aging collection targeted at "defying gravity" and filling in wrinkles ANYWHERE.

Estee Lauder Spring 2018 Preview

NAILS | In My House, It Will Always Be the Year of the Cat

I know I have tons of blue glittery polishes, but this was a December release from Picture Polish and it's called Kitty. I mean, come on I HAD to get it! This is a blogger collaboration with Metka from Lacquered Bits and it is a blue sparkly holo with multi-coloured glitter mixed in. I can't even describe it well because I just get so lost in it!

Picture Polish Kitty Nail Art