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My little place to show the world how badly obsessed I am with anything sparkly.

Marcelle/ Annabelle holiday products

How is everyone dealing with Sandy? Either being right in the middle of it or watching it on the news, it is horrible and brings out mood down. Hoping these holiday products will give cheer you up a little like it does to me.
This is Marcelle Golden Glow Holiday 2012 Special Edition, which includes:
- Marcelle Golden Glow Illuminator BB. This product contains golden light-reflecting pigments (one shade only), can be worn alone or after your moisturizer/ foundation. It offers all skin care benefits of the BB cream, plus the glow/ illumination. No SPF. Retails $26.95.
- Marcelle Golden Glow face powder - an ombre from bronze to light pink stripes in shiny gold compact, mirror and brush included. Retails $16.95.
I have already seen the display in store, only 6 items for each product, thought I should let you know. I personally love the gold packaging, am ready for the holiday.
Continue on to Marcelle holiday gift sets, also scream "holiday" like mad.
There are 4 different sets, each includes a sequined clutch, an eyeshadow quad and a Lux Diamond or Lux Metallic liquid eyeliner.
- The Nudes has Nouveau Nude quad and Pure Gold Lux Diamond
- The Mauves has Mauve on Over quad and Silver Lux Diamond
2 sets each per display.
- The Blues (pictured) has Rhythm in Blues quad and Crystalline Lux Diamond
- The Greens has Jungle Fever quad and Goldmine Lux Metallic
Only one set each per display.
The products alone value at $27.50, not counting the clutch. Each set retails $22.95, should be in store by the second week of November.
From Annabelle, these Holiday box sets will be an awesome treat for yourself or a holiday gift for a loved one.
On the left is the Glitterama Holiday box with 4 best-selling shades of Glitterama liquid eyeliners (Plutonium, Solar Flare, Purple Zone and Atomic Red).
Retails $17.95 (valued $31.80, 43% saving).
On the right is Big Show Holiday box, contains 4 of the Big Show Lip Shines (Flirt, Breathe, Giggle and Shout).
Retails $17.95 (valued $38, 52% saving).
You know that I'd vote for the Lip Shines, great products and colours, awesome value! These boxes will be in store in November, keep an eye out :)
I also spotted Marcelle skin care sets similar to the ones I found last year with sequined bags, if you are more into skin care than makeup.
Hope everyone stays safe!

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NOTD: China Glaze I'm with the Lifeguard

I don't know if it's Sandy that brought us rain and grey sky today or it was just my grumpy mood, but I had a really hard time to set my mind to active mode this morning. Mondays have never been easy, that's a fact.
Anyway, the NOTD today is gotta be bright and cheerful. It's China Glaze I'm with the Lifeguard, again from the kijiji haul I did a while back. I did miss it at Sally when the Summer Neons collection was out and then went on clearance, I am glad to have it now.
It is really neon, right in your face, isn't it?
I'm with the Lifeguard applies well and doesn't need a coat of white underneath to show up neon. Brownie points for that! However, I wore it by itself on the nails for like 5 minutes, then had to add something to it. I know this neon green would be a perfect canvas for some nail art, but again, I gotta find energy and creativity for that. Another time, lol.
The glittery top coat added here is OPI Save Me (again, I know). I needed some glitters but not too chunky to cover up the base colour. Quite a few people don't seem to like bar glitters but I'm indifferent.
You can see the bars better here. They show up different colours depending on the light and angle. But look at them in the bottle, holo effect eh?
I am slowly switching over to darker colours for the season, but when I need a pick-me-up, bright colours would do the job. What do I do without nail polish?
And if any of you wonder about my haul posts that are normally take the Monday spotlight, I have managed to avoid buying a lot makeup and nail polish lately. An item here and there, yes, but nothing to the magnitude of previous months, not worth a separate post. I still tweet about good deals and promotions besides the Weekly Flyer deal posts, so follow me on twitter, if you haven't already (the button is on the left side bar).
Have a great day, and stay safe!

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Quo Back to Basics palette

Not too long after I posted about Quo Back to Basics palette, I went out and bought it, couldn't resist. Thought you guys want to know how close it is to Urban Decay Naked palette, so let's get to it.
Here they are, Naked on the top and Back to Basics on the bottom. First glance, they are very close except for Toasted (fourth shade in from the right) looking a little lighter than the shade from Quo. Pics were taken at night, so some shades might look a little different under flash. Read on for swatches.

The first four shades from the left side of the palettes, swatched with a damp eyeshadow brush, no primer. I did not experience any chalky texture or fallout from either palette.
First row, from L-R: Urban Decay Virgin, Sin, Naked and Sidecar.
Second row are the shades at the exact same position in the palette, in the exact same order.
I don't know about you but I can't tell them apart. Even though I know that Quo makes good eyeshadows but I am still shocked to see how smooth these applied and how similar they are to their Naked counterparts.
I wish Quo named the eyeshadows like UD did, to make it easier for me to identify a particular shade, but that's not that important.
Moving on to the our shades in the middle.
First row: Urban Decay Buck, Half Baked, Smog and Darkhorse.
Second row: ones from Back to Basics.
As you can tell, Buck is a little darker than its Quo friend when swatched (not very different in the pans), its pigmentation is also a tiny bit better. The Quo colour did take an extra swipe of the brush to get the same colour payoff as Buck.
The rest? Again, can't tell the difference with naked eyes (pun intended). OMG! I got so giddy while swatching, I couldn't stop smiling. I love Quo!
Four shades on the right sides of the palettes.
First row: Urban Decay Toasted, Hustle, Creep and Gunmetal.
Second row: Quo.
As suspected, Toasted swatched as a darker bronze while the Quo shade showed up as a lighter bronze. The other three follow most of the pairs compared above: dupes head on! In fact, I think the Quo shade that is paired with Gunmetal might actually more pigmented.
Logistic:
- Urban Decay Naked palette is CAD60 on Sephora (12 x 0.05oz/ 1.3g), comes to $3.85 per gram. It comes with a mirrored case, a 24/7 liner or a brush) and a mini size of Primer Potion (which does add to the value of the palette). All house in a clear plastic case.
- Quo Back to Basics is CAD25 at Shoppers (12 x 1g), works out to be $2.08 per gram. also comes with a mirror and an eyeshadow brush. No primer, which isn't a big deal to me, but note if you do need a primer to come with your palette. No plastic case but it has a clear plastic film placed on top of the eyeshadows, taped down on three sides. This will help avoid testing/ contamination, which is always a plus. It is, however, a LE product, as part of the holiday collection.
So, unless you are smitten with Toasted or the Primer Potion, or already own Naked, I would say Back to Basics is the way to go. I know that Quo runs promotions sometimes on the LE collections but I can't say how long this particular palette would stay in stock (now that I tell you how awesome it is), so grab it when you can.

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Blue NOTD for Voola

This NOTD is dedicated to my dear friend Mary at My Numerous Diversions in memory of her mom Voola.
November is Pancreatic Cancer month and Mary wants to raise awareness by wearing blue nail polish, her mom's favorite colour, and encourage her twitter friends to do the same.
For every nail polish picture tweeted to Mary @mellinail with #endpancancer hashtag tomorrow, Monday, October 22, she will donate $1 to Pancreatic Cancer Canada on top of a base donation of $30 she already set aside for.
I connected with Mary through the love of nail polish on twitter, and got to meet her once last time I was in Toronto. We were like long lost friends, could talk about anything and everything.
So here is my little contribution to what Mary started, to show my support. Join me, if you haven't done so already. You don't have to make a post, a picture will do.
This is Gosh Blue Monday, first pic with flash and this second pic without flash on an overcast day. It is a beautiful medium blue with fine shimmers which looks more intense in the sun or direct lighting.
I hope many of you will see this post and have enough time to have a blue NOTD pic tweeted to Mary by tomorrow. It will mean a lot to me, and to her if you do (and please let me know if you do, tweet me). Thank you so much in advance.
I also go back to almost 200 NOTDs posts I have on the blog and found some of my favorite blue colours to show you below.
There are obviously like a million of blues out there, in all kinds of finishes. I will probably find even more blues with everyone's tweets tomorrow.
To Mary, your mom will be so proud and happy with what you do for her. Hugs!
Joe Fresh Navy

W7 Mosaic

Essence Sun Club nail polish in BBC Splash Refresh

Maybeline Color Show in Denim Dash

Claire's Bright Skies on top of Essence Color & Go in Underwater

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NOTD: Joe Fresh Navy

Oh how I wish Joe Fresh Navy is a little more navy. There is certainly dark blue hint in there but the colour is so dark that it looks almost black in most lighting. The flash did bring out the colour a bit more than IRL, I'm glad.
This is another bottle I picked out from my Kijiji haul. I am so bad at tackling my untried pile, so I try to commit to use a lot of shades from this bunch before moving on to the next pile.
Surprisingly, I hadn't owned Navy already. The quality and application are consistent with other Joe Fresh shades I tried.
Decided to jazz up Navy with some green flakies in Finger Paints Flecked, with Claire's matte top coat. I always prefer a mattified flakie look, and this one turned out not bad at all. Love all my Finger Paints flakie top coats.
It's only Tuesday and I can't wait for the weekend. I was so busy on Saturday running Squirt to 3 different recreational classes, even the whole day staying in on Sunday couldn't make up for it. And the shocking reality is I haven't been to my beloved Shoppers location for more than 2 weeks. That never happened before, unless I was away for vacation!!!
The weather has been going nuts here too. As I described in yesterday's post, 3C/37F in the weekend and then we got 22C/ 72F on Monday. How do you dress for that, lol?

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Big Day Dowtown I

It's time for another Big Day Downtown series to showcase what Halifax waterfont and people have to offer. Recap of my posts last year to show you how much fun I had - the IncrEDIBLE Picnic, E-Pin AYCE Korean BBQ, and some Jan Iredale makeup. I guarantee they are fun to read :)
This year it's even more fun to start, since bloggers are paired up to do some exploring together. My partner, Lynn over at East Coast Travels, and I (and Squirt) headed out for a night out in the weekend.
This is the wall decoration at Bistro Le Coq, a cozy Parisian-style restaurant on Argyle Street, steps away from the waterfront. Can't say that I know much about French food other their bread, so I was excited to check out their menu, where dishes were listed in French with English explanation underneath. Gotta say it took me a little longer than usual to read through it lol.
Started out with an appetizer (Hors-D'oeuvre, words that I can never spell haha), we went with moules à la Normande et frites - steamed PEI mussels with white wine, leek cream and apple wood-smoked bacon, and duck fat fries on the side.
The portion was generous, the cream sauce was totally delicious (we polished it all off afterward), and the fries were plenty - a little fattier than regular fries for sure and heavier on the salt dusting too. The little cup held truffle-infused mayo, was a nice touch.
Warm freshly baked bread and (clarified) butter accompanied the appetizer nicely. We definitely indulged ourselves.
For entrees: Squirt picked the quiche lorraine - ham & cheese quiche, which I did not get a taste of cause she chowed down on it so quickly. Except for the arugula as she found it too bitter to taste. The picked carrot and turnip (I assumed) didn't appeal to her either.
I don't what quiche is normally served with, felt a little guilty that she leaf the greens on the plate untouched.
This is the steak sandwich (no fancy French name lol) that Lynn and I shared, with a bowl of soupe a l'oignon - French onion soup (not pictured).
The sandwich was packed with sliced beef and a fried egg on marble rye bread, with regular fries, truffled mayo and picked carrots. The onion soup was not bad, a little salty to my liking. Three of us couldn't finish the bowl. Again, my question was whether people have the onion soup with some bread or by itself.
Overall, Bistro Le Coq was a cool place to enjoy a French meal. The menus (food and drinks) were impressive, price point was quite right, and our server was lovely. I would prefer a little lighter touch on the salt, but that's just my taste.
We decided to walk around after the big meal, but defeated the purpose by indulging in some gelato for dessert :)
It was really chilly that night (around 3 degrees, 37F) but Nocturne (Art after Dark) made up for it. Lots of awesome art works were featured that night, with awesome lighting effects. There are even two special bus routes to take people along on the art routes.
We spotted this a humongous spider web at Victoria Park. According to the Guide, the piece is called Capture, by Gerald Beaulieu. It was made out of plastic strings, quite sturdy and sticky to touch :) For the size of it, we were just as small as spiders next to that web. I can't imagine the amount of time the artist spent on it. The three big spotlights behind the web did a great job in grabbing the audience's attention.
So we had a great time in town, even in the cold. Stay tuned for more fun things I do with Big Day Downtown!

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Vichy Normaderm hydrating acne care

Remember how excited I was to find out about Vichy Normaderm line? Check back my review of their Norma Teint Anti Imperfection foundation to read more about it.
I am even more excited now to review Vichy Normaderm Hydrating acne care, a salicylic acid lotion for sensitive/ acne-prone skin. It is supposed to provide 24 hour hydration, help treat pimples and prevent new breakouts, reduce the look of redness, pores and shine.
Like I mentioned on this blog before, I am a big fan of multi purposed products, less time getting ready means more time sleeping :)
Besides salicylic acid (a fast-acting exfoliator to unblock pores), the product also contains glycolic acid and LHA (lipo-hydroxy acid) to gently exfoliate the skin, stimulate cell regeneration, with acti-bacterial properties.
Described to acts on 6 sign of acne prone skin:
- acne pimples
- breakouts
- dilated pores
- shine
- redness
- dryness.
Sad to say I have almost all signs listed here. Time to get the product to work on me! Note that there's only one product in the picture, the box on the left and the pic (from the brochure that came with it) in the background are for illustration purpose only lol.
The lotion (as Vichy calls it) comes out of the airless pump (big bonus point for this type of packaging) almost like a gel, very lightly green tinted and smell great (like an expensive skin care product does) - light and fresh. It is non greasy/ sticky, absorbs as quick as I could count to 5, seriously.
I use it as a moisturizer and matte primer in the morning and it holds up my foundation just as well as (if not better than) other primers I had used. And the best part is I did not have to blot or powder to get rid of the shine on my T zone.
I also took the warning seriously to not use the lotion with other topical acne products (as it might cause possible dryness or irritation). I also try not to use facial scrubs either during the time I tested the product (and many more times after).
The result: My skin is properly moisturized, breakouts are in control and I don't look shiny until I remove my makeup at night.
Just like the foundation mentioned above, the lotion is hypoallergenic, non comedogenic, oil free, paraben free, with Vichy thermal spa water.
Active ingredient: Salicylic Acid 1%.
Non medicinal ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Alcohol Denat, Phenyl Trimethicone, Isononyl Isononanoate, Nylon-66, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Isopropyl Lauroyl Sarcosinate, Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Sodium Hydroxide, Glycolic Acid, etc.
Vichy Normaderm Hydrating acne care comes in a 50ml bottle with pump, retails $29.95.

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NOTD: Gosh Golden Dragon

Forget about Fall, Winter has arrived! After leaving snowflakes in Manitoba a few days back, it delivers 6 degree temperature (43F) this morning around here and will warm up to 10C/ 50F during the day.
And I have "snowflakes" (i.e. glitters) on my nails today too. This is Gosh Golden Dragon, with a slight duochrome effect in the bottle (hardly on the nails). The base colour isn't bad, but I expected a little more out of it, so I was disappointed.
It has been a while since Gosh came out with new interesting shades, what's up with that?
There's only one thing to do to a boring colour: top it up with glitters lol.
This is Revlon Star, one of the LE glitter top coats Revlon released a while ago. It's mostly silver glitters (of different sizes, which at certain angle appear holographic) in clear base.
I have used it in occasions like this to give me a reason to glance at my nails over time. Scroll down to see the glitters in details, you will see why.
I couldn't resist posting 2 close-ups where Star is subtle and intense just by the way the light hit it.
Totally a Winter inspired mani, isn't it? Though it also reminds me of the beach, glittering sand and cool breeze. Want a vacation now? :)
Talking about vacation, I can't wait until my next trip home in December. I'll miss Canadian Christmas, Boxing Day sale and lots of other things but I needed it. This year has been one of the hardest years I have been through my entire life, I wouldn't have last this long without the promise of this trip.
I hope my fellow Canadian readers had a nice Thanksgiving. I'm thankful for my heart hanging in there, not giving in to the hardship that went at it, for Squirt for being the love of my life, sweet and loving, and for you, my readers, for the sweet comments and support on this blog.
I should probably leave it at that before I get all emotional here :)
Last pic, isn't it dreamy?
Back to the topic I love to talk about: shopping! I didn't want to brave the cold on Saturday, didn't have time on Sunday and nothing opened on Monday, so no makeup haul to report. I did get a few clothing items and shoes online with some Thanksgiving promotions.
How about you guys? Any good shopping scores? Awesome Thanksgiving meal? Or just generally an awesome weekend?
Just heard this morning that we are getting a Walmart Super Center, don't know if I should be excited lol.

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FOTD: Lush Emotional Brilliance

It has been a really long time that I did a FOTD for the blog due to random breakouts. Now things calm down a little, so here I am.
These pics were taken outside on an overcast day, no flash. The colours were a lot more vibrant than how they looked here. What's new huh? :)
The featured products are from Lush's Emotional Brilliance line that I reviewed yesterday:
- Focus on the inner half of the lids, very subtle
- Motivation as liner on the upper lids, vibrant and lovely
- Perspective on the lips, looks like a pinky nude on me.
I was going for a smoky eye look with toned down lips but by the way it looks here, it could be a neutral, work safe look too. I want tell you to click to enlarge the pics, but at the same time I don't really want to show you my flaws up close lol.
Other products used:
- Eye base: Maybelline Color Tattoo in Fierce & Tangy. It is sheer, did not affect the eyeshadow colours on top
- Eyeshadows: Annabelle Hawaian Hues palette (champagne as brow bone highlight, green and black on the outer corners)
- Eyebrow: Avon Ultra Luxury brow liner in Dark Brown
- Lower lash line liners: Annabelle Smoothie eyeshadow pencil in Absinthe-minded and Annabelle Smudge liner in Foxy Grey
- Mascara: L'Oreal Double Extend with Lash Boosting serum in Blackest Black
- Primer: Vichy Normaderm Hydrating Acne care (review coming soon)
- Foundation: Rimmel Lasting Finish 25 hour foundation in 300 Sand, lighten by Marcelle Matte Finish in Almond. I have ended up with a few foundations that are darker than my skin tone, so mixing is a must
- Blush: Sally Hansen Natural Beauty sheerest cream blush in Sunrise. Still trying to finish this up so I can move on to new blushes :)
- Setting powder: CoverFx Setting Fx. This step was actually not necessary with the primer I used, it was a habit to use a powder without thinking.
Close up on the eyes to do a (weak) justice to the eyeliner. It is a gorgeous teal shade that makes your eyes pop. You all know I am not good at applying liquid liners, but I didn't do too bad with this one. It last well on my lids till the end of the day, no smudging/ flaking/ fading.
Bonus pic: crazy hair when the wind was not playing in my favour when I manage a smile of some sort :) Told you I don't look good when I smile.
That's it for my "glamorous" comeback of FOTD. The Emotional Brilliance line is a nice addition to Lush's product offers. I would suggest lots of swatching in store before you commit to a shade or two.
I realize that I haven't heard much from you all on the blog lately, so what have you been up to? This week has been such a blur to me, I can't wait for the long weekend to recharge.
There won't be much of a Thanksgiving celebration for us this weekend with no family around, so we might end up eating tofu instead of turkey. Squirt started to question my diet choice lately, not that there's anything wrong with tofu lol.

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Lush Emotional Brilliance

I was quite curious when Lush announced their Emotional Brilliance makeup line where the colours were appropriately named to represent you and how you feel. I received three items to review.
Focus is one of the 6 cream eyeshadows in the line, with sponge tip applicators. The name suggests me to Stay On Track, quite appropriate cause I am very easy to be distracted by sparkly things.
It swatches beautifully on my hand (see below) but on my lids, it is quite sheer. This particular shade is best as a base or to add a bit of shine on top of your eyeshadow.
Motivation (i.e. Do What You Love) is a beautiful teal liquid liner, comes with a brush applicator. The formula is meant to be blendable (does not set right away), except two shades - Independent and Fantasy - that are meant to be fast drying.
The base in the eyeshadows and liners is made with soothing rose petal infusion and skin-softening almond and jojoba oils to care for the sensitive area around your eyes. Motivation is easy to apply and wears well, no smudging nor fading throughout the day.
 
Ingredients for the cream eyeshadows and the 9 blendable eyeliners: Rose petal infusion (Rosa centifolia), Water, Glycerine, Stearic acid, Almond oil (Prunus dulcis), Jojoba oil (Simmondsia chinensis), Cupuacu butter (Theobroma grandiflorum), Triethanolamine, Cetearyl alcohol, Titanium dioxide, Iron oxides, Methylparaben, Propylparaben.
Ingredients for the 2 fast drying eyeliners, for reference: Water, Glyceryl stearate, PVP, Titanium dioxide, Iron oxides, Methylparaben, Propylparaben.
Perspective (Now I Can See Clearly) is a liquid lipstick, with a sponge tip applicator. The 13 lipsticks in the line range from nude to red, purple, plum, orange, etc.
The formula contains a blend of organic jojoba oil, candelilla wax and rose wax to soften and moisturize.
They are suggested to use after a lip balm, and I do agree with this. Perspective on me is a pinky nude shade, does appear a little drying on the lips after a few hours, even with a lip balm underneath.
The product can work as a cream blush as well, but I did not try it this way.
Ingredients: Jojoba oil (Simmondsia chinensis), Candelilla wax (Euphorbia cerifera), Rose wax (Rosa damascena), Iron oxides, D&C Red No. 27, Titanium dioxide.
Overall, Motivation is a great name, seeing how easy it applies and how well it stays on, I am motivated to try more liquid liners. Focus needs a bit more coverage focus (pun intended), but I won't judge the whole eyeshadow line after testing only one shade. Perspective is a beautiful shade but can be a little more moisturizing and light. Each of these little bottles has 0.2oz/ 5g of product, retails $22.95.
Stay tuned for a FOTD to feature these shades. In the meantime, enjooy this song about the line, with some ninjas making appearance :)

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NOTD: Essie Pretty Edgy

First shade to try from my nail polish haul posted yesterday: Essie Pretty Edgy, glitterized and mattified.
It's kinda hard to believe I hadn't owned this shade yet, quite a unique green now that I see it on the nails. And it's a pretty good cream, opaque in one thich coat or two thinner coats.
I wore this mani over the (rainy) weekend, did catch a few precious moments when it cleared up to snap this pic. With natural light, no sun, no flash, the colour is pretty accurate and the glitters show up better.
This one is with flash, to show you the matte shine. Does it sound like an oxymoron? Hear me out first.
To get this look, I added two coats of Nicole by OPI Bring on the Tinsel as a glitter top coat, then Claire's matte top coat on top. I always admire matte glitter looks on nail blogs but don't do it often enough on here. It turned out pretty awesome this way.
Bring on the Tinsel has green, red/ fuchsia and silver fine glitters in a clear base, a pretty good pairing colour to Pretty Edgy.
Bottle shot to show you the quite complex glitter combination. I appreciate the unique size of glitters in this case, taking a break from indies' chunky glitter mixes.
Ignore the uneven nail length here. The nail on my middle finger broke off real bad while I was trying on some jeans, and it took forever to grow it out. Having longer nails is not just for show to me, cause the tip of my fingers would hurt if the nails are too short. Can't tell you how mad I was when that nail broke.
Anyway, hope a little green on the blog brightens up your Tuesday. Have a great one!

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