Winter Roundup: My Fave Products So Far in 2021!

Hey y’all!

So, as some of you may remember from what feels, honestly, ages ago (even though it’s only been a few months — has COVID really messed up anyone else’s internal timeline or is it just me?) I used to share two weekly posts on my blog page — a post on Sunday, and a post on Thursday (ever-so-creatively dubbed “Thursday Favourites”) where I highlighted one of my personal favourite makeup or skincare product in a segment each week, going into detail about what it was about each product that I loved so much.

These segments were something I came up with when I first started my blog (back when I used to post THREE times a week……. I honestly don’t know how I did it). At the time, I didn’t really know where I was going with my blog, what kinds of posts I wanted to make, or really — what I was even doing. I grew attached to my little segment — it felt like my own little gimmick — even though I found it challenging to write out long, thoughtful and creative reviews on new products every week.

Then, later on, as most of you know — I started falling behind on my posts. Writing out a review to share every week started to feel like a chore — there was absolutely nothing enjoyable about it anymore, it was just a task I had to complete each week. Eventually, the stress of falling behind and the pressure I was putting on myself surrounding my blog simply became too much, and resulted in me going straight up radio silence for almost two months. It wasn’t an intentional break — I just couldn’t do it anymore.

When I finally took the time to recuperate and make my return to blogging, I knew that (at least temporarily), the weekly reviews had to go — they were the part of blogging I had found to be the most grating over the months leading up to my hiatus. I thought that the segment was something I still wanted to keep up with, so my original intention was to delay sharing them until I had built up enough of a backlog that I wouldn’t have to stress about falling behind anymore. However, once I got back into blogging 100%, I started to realize the VERY distinct difference in how I felt writing out my regular posts, compared to how I felt writing out reviews. Honestly? There wasn’t really anything fun about it. What’s more — it often took a lot more time and energy than my regular Sunday posts, as I always wanted to take and edit my own original photos of each product I was sharing each week.

After spending some time writing out only my Sunday posts and seeing my love of blogging slowly begin to return, I realized it was time to bring the Thursday Favourites segment to an end. I thought I would be sad to see it go, but honestly it’s been a bit of a relief. That being said, I still want to share my favourite products with you all — so I’ve come to a bit of a compromise. Similarly to how I’ve shared annual round-ups of all my favourite products of the year in the past, I’m now going to be doing seasonal round-ups of both new favourite products of mine, or old returning favourites I had yet to share. This way, I’m hoping I’ll still be able to share all the products I’ve been loving with you all — without the stress of writing out lengthy, blog-length reviews each week.

So, basically, we’ll see how this goes. That’s the great thing about having my own blog is that at the end of the day, what I share is ultimately up to me (and there’s no reason I should feel the need to share posts that exhaust me just because I’ve decided I’m “supposed to”). Anyway, without further ado — here’s seven of my most favourite products that I’ve tried and loved since my last Thursday Favourites update!

Sulwhasoo’s Bloomstay Vitalizing Eye Cream

My under-eye area has pretty much always been the bane of my existence. I’ve definitely mentioned this before (many, many times) on my blog, but to summarize for those of you who don’t know — for whatever reason, my under-eye area has always had seemingly perpetual dark circles which no amount of sleep or skincare ever seemed to fix. As well, the skin under my eyes has always been very delicate and has always maintained heavy creasing — basically making me look like I’m constantly exhausted (even in the best-rested, most relaxed time of my life). As well, years of trying to aggressively fix these problems basically just ended up with me clogging up all my pores under my eyes, leaving me with seemingly permanent milia (verrryyyy tiny clogged pores, for those of you lucky enough not to know. Essentially, you can’t pop them — you have to solve them with proper skincare). I wasn’t even aware that my skincare routine was causing the milia under my eyes — I thought it was just something that was permanently a part of my face.

I tried out a couple of eye creams over the years, but honestly, I never found what I was looking for. A lot of the eye creams I tried had seemingly no effect — I honestly couldn’t tell what, exactly, I was spending all this money for. However, I finally found one that was worth it. This eye cream has actually made noticeable changes to my under eye area — since trying this cream, my dark circles have mostly vanished, my skin has firmed up, and while I’m still struggling to be 100% rid of all my old milia — this product hasn’t done anything to add to the issue. (It’s taking a while to resolve, but I’m getting there!). Anyway, this stuff is expensive but it really is the best — I’m pretty sure I’ve found my forever eye cream here.

If this sounds like the product you’ve been missing in your life, check it out at Sephora!

Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops

I won’t lie — this product was a bit of an impulse purchase that I was pretty certain I was going to regret, but ended up obsessed with. When this product first launched, all the posts I saw about it and it’s natural, makeup-free highlighting abilities really sold me — but immediately after I purchased it, I began worrying about whether or not it was something I really, truly needed. I figured, ultimately, that I would give it a try and I could always end up returning it if it turned out to be something that was unnecessary (which isn’t something I normally do, ever, because it can be pretty wasteful). However, when I actually got this product and tried it out, all my worries washed away. (I don’t even know why I was stressed — Glow Recipe has never done me wrong). This product has so many uses — it’s hydrating, adds a glow to your skin naturally, and can be worn with makeup to give your skin a little extra boost. As well, niacinamide acts to remove any hyperpigmentation and scarring from the skin — which I ended up loving, since it’s not a skincare ingredient I had used before. Ultimately, this has made a fantastic addition to my morning skincare routine — it leaves me looking fresh, awake, and glow — while also serving a purpose in my skincare. I was so nervous that this product was going to be something that I wouldn’t use or need, but it honestly gives me something new to look forward to every morning when I wash my face.

If this sounds like the product you’ve been missing in your life, check it out at Sephora!

Biossance’s Squalane + Tea Tree Detox Mask

This mask has got to be one of my all-time faves. Before trying this mask out, I’d been going years using harsh charcoal and clay masks to unclog my pores — which can be super useful, but harsh on sensitive skin. While I do love charcoal masks for occasional use, I was really needing something solid help unclog my pores regularly without being too harsh or stripping the oils from my face. For anyone else out there who feels the same way, and has sensitive skin like me — you need to try this mask out for yourself. As the name suggests, it’s purpose is to detox your pores, but it does it without being too harsh — in fact, it actually hydrates your skin as you use it! I always can feel AND see a noticeable difference in my skin after using this mask. Seriously, it’s like I have baby skin after. 10/10, would recommend.

If this sounds like the product you’ve been missing in your life, check it out at Sephora!

Laneige’s Lip Glowy Balm

Laneige is a brand I’m pretty new to, but have been absolutely loving. I already use and love their overnight lip mask, and I’ve tried out a sample of their overnight hydration mask (which I adored). So when I was in need of a new lip balm, I figured — why not give this one a shot? When it comes to lip balms, I often find there are two kinds — ones that double as a gloss, and ones that actually work. This is, honestly, the first lip balm I’ve ever tried that does both. This lip balm has a glossy-like sheen to it, but isn’t sticky or gross. It actually lasts, too — unlike so many lip balms that need constant reapplication. It’s pretty thick, however, that type of thing doesn’t really bother me with balms (and it definitely isn’t the heaviest lip balm I’ve ever tried). Most importantly, though — it always leaves me lips feeling softer after I use it.

If this sounds like the product you’ve been missing in your life, check it out at Sephora!

Glow Recipe’s Avocado Melt Retinol Sleeping Mask

This is another face mask I’ve tried in the last year that’s definitely made it into my permanent collection. Retinol is a pretty renowned ingredient in skincare nowadays, and for a lot of good reasons. There’s all kinds of cool benefits to using it — the main ones being preventing (and minimizing existing) wrinkles, brightening and exfoliating the skin at a cellular level by increasing cell turnover rates, help regulate oily skin, prevent breakouts and even help with hyperpigmentation. Which is a lot of benefits! However, it definitely has some downsides too — it can be pretty intense on the skin, and overuse can lead to redness and peeling, as well — it does tend to make your skin more sensitive to the sun. I’m always nervous about trying out hardcore active ingredients in my skincare routine, but I decided to give this mask a shot. This mask is PERFECT for people with sensitive skin, or who are looking to give retinol a go and want to dip their toes in. Not only can it be used as frequently or infrequently as you need, but it can also be used as a wash off OR overnight mask, depending on your needs. Personally, I use this mask as a wash-off, but it’s totally fine to wear it overnight as well — Glow Recipe has a special retinol recipe that helps it release slowly overnight, so it won’t be damaging your skin or anything. No matter what, it definitely can take your skin some time to adjust to retinol — but the benefits really do seem worth it. If you’re new to retinol, though, this mask is 100% the perfect place to start.

If this sounds like the product you’ve been missing in your life, check it out at Sephora!

ColourPop’s Super Shock Highlighter

I recently tried ColourPop for the first time ever, and I have to say, I’m obsessed. All of their makeup has impressed me so far (especially considering the price), but none of them blew me away the same way their Super Shock highlighter has. This highlighter is INSANE. It creates a look that’s so dewy and dimensional — they describe it on their website as “bouncy”, and they definitely aren’t wrong. This stuff is PIGMENTED, and the colour is absolutely stunning. I know I’m definitely going to be buying more in the future — because this really may be the best highlighter I’ve ever used (and that says a lot, coming from a highlighter enthusiast such as myself).

If this sounds like the product you’ve been missing in your life, check it out at ColourPop!

ColourPop Glitterally Obsessed Glitter Gel

This was another one of ColourPop’s products I tried in my recent haul that really blew me away. I absolutely LOVE glitter, but using it in makeup can be a real pain. Loose glitter is nearly impossible to apply well, and you often end up needing special glue or other products to apply it right and make it stay. This gel, however, totally takes all the stress out of glitter — while it may look super pink, the gel itself is actually clear — so you can simply dab this glitter on wherever you’re feeling it. And that’s it! It stays SO well. While I guess I really don’t have many opportunities to wear glitter out lately with COVID and all (this stuff would be PERFECT for festival season), I’m definitely going to find ways to work it into my makeup looks because I just adore it.

If this sounds like the product you’ve been missing in your life, check it out at ColourPop!

Happy Sunday everyone, and happy Valentine’s Day! No matter what you ended up doing today, or who you spent the day with — I hope you all had a great day. Holidays don’t have to be big and over-the-top to be special, after all — I had a great day today, and all I did was treat myself to some bubble tea and watch the latest episode of my favourite show.

I hope you guys enjoyed this post — I’m hoping that this segment ends up working out, and helps me to share my favourite products with you in a way that’s stress-free and enjoyable to me! I’d love to hear your thoughts on the format, so drop a comment below and let me know what you thought!

Much love,

Meredith

ColourPop Cosmetics Haul!

Hey everyone!

Sooooo, this post has been a really, REALLY long time coming. For those of you who follow my posts regularly, I’m sure you’ll remember me teasing this post as far back as December (or possibly even late November) of 2020. It’s taken a while, but it’s finally here! I honestly can’t even tell you all how excited I am to share this post with you — not only have I been DYING to try ColourPop out for a while now, but all the roadblocks and delays I ran into while making this post only made me more excited to finally be able to share it.

ColourPop is a brand that I’ve been hearing about since, like, forever — it really seems like every single makeup blogger, vlogger and Instagrammer was obsessed. However, due to the fact that I’ve been hesitant in the past about buying makeup online without seeing it in store (as well as the fact that I’m not American, and international shipping can be a pain), it took me a while to getting around to trying it out for myself. I took the leap in 2019 with buying cosmetics online from Kylie Cosmetics, and after having taken the leap once I realized it was no where NEAR as nerve-wracking as I was making it out to be. It takes a while to narrow down products when you can’t see them in person to decide, and yes, you won’t always get exactly what you’re picturing. However, so long as you stick to popular products (such as shadow palettes, highlighters, lip glosses or whatever the site your shopping from is known for) and read the colour description and reviews on products such as lipglosses that can be hard to see the nuanced differences in from photos online, you should be good.

At the end of 2019, I rated ColourPop as one of the brands I was most excited to try in 2020. With my fear of purchasing from online-only cosmetic brands out of the way, it was on the top of my list being one of the best-known makeup brands out there that I’d never tried. However, as we all know, 2020 de-railed pretty quickly, and my need to purchase loads of makeup suddenly dropped to zero.

I honestly kind of forgot about trying ColourPop for a while — after all, I maybe did my makeup like 10 times total last year — until one of their collabs caught my eye. ColourPop, after all, is kind of known for their numerous collabs with different influencers and brands. However, the particular collaboration in question that re-launched my interest in trying the brand was none other than their Sailor Moon collection. As a slightly-less-than-casual anime fan, while I’ve never watched Sailor Moon specifically (yet), I was kinda obsessed with how cute these products were and the concept of the collab overall — so I finally decided to give it a shot. (I mean, I was also kind of drawn in by their tie-dye shadow collection, too…… both collections seemed like they were totally made for me, TBH).

Between the international shipping and the fact that I placed my order only a few weeks before Black Friday, it ended up taking my package over a month to arrive. After all the anticipation, though, I did finally get to test it all out and I’ve finally written out all of my thoughts and first impressions to share with y’all. So without further ado — let’s get into it!

Sailor Moon Collection Eyeshadow Palette in Pretty Guardian

Did I really buy this eyeshadow palette simply because it has Sailor Moon on the front? Perhaps. But do I love it anyways? Absolutely! The colours are absolutely stunning, and while they aren’t a combination that I’d usually expect together, they go beautifully with each other. What’s more, this palette comes with neutrals, mattes and blending shades as well as bright, shimmery and bold colours, so you really can make any number of complete looks with this palette alone.

Sailor Moon Collection Glitter Gel in Moonlight Legend

This glitter gel is absolutely UNREAL. I feel like I’ve been searching for a product like this since, well, forever. (Seriously, where was this glitter before I went to Fvded in 2018?). I know ColourPop is far from the only cosmetic brand that sells chunky glitter in clear adhesive such as thing, but it’s certainly the most major brand to do so that I can think of offhand (and certainly the easiest to get your hands on). All that aside, though, this product actually works wonders. As in, when I swatched it on my hand, I expected it to rub off instantly or wash off entirely with water, as so many liquid-glitter type products do. However, this stuff stayed put. As in, it didn’t even budge on my HAND after a few hours. Which basically means that you’ll have NOTHING to worry about when you wear it on your face. Don’t worry, though — it comes off super easily with makeup remover, so it’s not like it’s one of those products that stays on because it’s impossible to get off. The glitter is soooo pretty, too — it’s not as pink as it looks here as the gel goes on clear, but the glitter chunks are a sort of iridescent blue-pink that I’m really obsessed with. Now all I need is for COVID to end and festival season to restart so I can get the most possible use out of this stuff!

In A Trance Eyeshadow Palette

This was the eyeshadow palette that really convinced me that I had to put in an order with ColourPop. While the Sailor Moon collection really caught my eye, when I saw this I knew I had to have it for myself. My favourite colours are blue, purple, and pink, so this palette was literally made for me. I gave it a test run on New Years Eve, and honestly I didn’t really know what to expect. I’d heard great things about ColourPop, but at their price point, I found it hard to believe that they’d blow my mind. However, I was overall pleasantly surprised. Some of the super pale-pastel shades were less pigmented than I expected, however, it’s kind of a classic problem that many pastel shadows seem to have. Even the most expensive and high-quality pastels of any brand will always turn out less pigmented than non-pastel shades of the same line. However, when I tested out some of the darker colours, such as the darker pastel blue, the colour payoff was INSANE. Like, I wasn’t ready. (Seriously, I went in HARD with this blue, expecting it to be less pigmented like the lighter pastel blue and almost messed up my whole look when it turned out to be pigmented AF). All the colours blend out really well though, and they aren’t patchy at all, so I’ll let the fact that the pastel shades aren’t as pigmented slide. After all, they’re still beautiful and 100% buildable, so they just take a little more effort (but it’s worth it).

Blush Crush Eyeshadow Palette

I saw this palette and just felt it would really make a great everyday palette for me. I’ve really been digging the pale pink vibe for day-to-day makeup lately, so I decided to give this one a go. I don’t always love how coral/warm toned neutral shadows look on me, so for daily use, I tend to go for more neutral pinks and neutral or cool toned browns, depending on whether I’m trying to go for a casual “day out” look or something more professional. Trying this palette out, it may be a winner — I do kind of find the ColourPop glitter shades to be a bit difficult to use, but the shimmer and matte shades are to die for and the made a great daytime look.

Super Shock Highlighter in Manifest That…

Wow. Okay, so, I actually don’t even know where to start with this highlighter. I’d heard about Super Shock highlighters before here and there, but NOTHING could have prepared me for how much I was going to LOVE this product!!! Seriously, I can hardly put it into words. I probably sound kind of weird right now, but this highlighter was a total game changer for me. If all of ColourPop’s highlighters are this good, I don’t know that I’ll ever buy a highlighter from another brand ever again. In all honestly, I was actually super skeptical before I actually tried it on. Not only does the colour look a little bland in-package, but the packaging itself was actually kind of broken — it doesn’t really stay shut on it’s own. However, I’m so blown away by how it makes my skin glow like I’ve never seen it glow before that I’ll just tape it shut — who cares!

Freckle Pen in Soft Brown

While I don’t really wear them often, I’m a huge fan of fake freckles. In the past I’ve applied them using cool-toned shadows and a tiny liner brush, however, even as I got pretty good at freckling my face, some freckles always ended up looking botched and I’ve never really ended up wearing them out in public. However, when I tested this pen out, it made applying freckles so easy I may actually give wearing them out and around a go. (I mean, I guess post-COVID since they’d be entirely covered by a mask, but still). This pen has a fine enough tip to give you itty-bitty freckles, but you can definitely create a whole variety of sizes with it. It’s easy to apply so they don’t end up looking weird or smudged, and the colour is cool-toned enough they actually look real. Basically, I’m going to be drawing on fake freckles a lot more often from now on.

Lux Gloss in Panache

Overall, this lip gloss is pretty solid. It’s not perfect, but it’s certainly pretty decent overall. I did find it to be a little heavy and sticky — but at the same time, the colour is gorgeous and it’s really pigmented for a gloss. I haven’t gotten much of a chance to see how it lasts when I wear it out in public (because, you know, COVID and all) but wearing it around my house with a full face of makeup, it did seem to pass the reliable and long-lasting test. It’s not perfect, but I’d definitely consider trying ColourPop’s glosses again in the future.

Lippie Pencil in Another Round Pencil

While I’m not super knowledgable on lip pencils, I have to say, I’m pretty impressed with this one. I have a decent-sized collection of lip pencils from the last few years, but honestly — I never really used them up until a few years ago. They seemed kind of pointless to me. Now I realize how useful they are, but my collection is still a little small since I still have a hard time coughing up a whole load of money for a product that goes UNDERNEATH my lip products. Like, I know they’re worth it on one hand, but on the other …….. anything more than like $15-$18 for a lip pencil is just asking too much. But $8? I’m sold. This pencil is creamy, pigmented and overall great value for it’s cost. Next time I need a lip pencil, I’ll know where to look.

To sum up my overall opinion, I have to say — I’m kind of obsessed. These products would be pretty good quality for any price point, but to my knowledge there’s almost no where else you could get such high-quality products for such a low price. For the cost of my entire haul, I could maybe get an eyeshadow palette and a lip gloss from the average brand that Sephora carries. While I’m still going to indulge in more expensive brands from time to time, ColourPop is the perfect brand to fill in any missing items from your collection, or for hopping on the latest trend without dropping too much.

I hope you all enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed sharing it with you! It was a long time coming but honestly, it was worth the wait. Now that I’ve tested the waters with ColourPop, I’m honestly excited to give more of their products a try. (Fingers crossed I’ll get more chances to wear makeup in 2021!). If you’ve tried out ColourPop before, drop a comment below and let me know how you liked it, or which products and collabs were your fave! I’d love to hear all about it.

I hope that all of you are having an amazing week, and despite everything, that your January’s are going well so far. This year has been off to a rocky start for sure, but we still have 11 months to hopefully turn it around and make it better than the last one.

Stay tuned next week, where I’m going to be sharing a surprise post with a bit of commentary I have about the online blogging community and changes I’m making for myself and my blog. I’m kind of nervous to share it with you guys, so I hope you all read it and share your thoughts about if you feel the same!

Much love and see you next week,

Meredith

2020 Round Up: My Fave Products and Brands of the Year!

Hey y’all!

2020 is finally, FINALLY coming to a close and I, for one, could not be happier. This year has been pretty rough from start to finish for all of us — I think we can all agree we’re looking forward to turning over a new page and starting 2021 with a nice, fresh start.

It’s crazy thinking back on the early months of 2020 now — some parts of it feel like absolute eons ago, whereas some moments feel as though they happened the other week. There’s been some ups (and many, many downs), but it hasn’t been all bad, I guess. I mean, I still got the chance to travel to Mexico this year before travel shut down worldwide, and while I had some hard times, I’ve had a lot of time off to learn to cope and become reacquainted with myself as an individual. I’ve revisited old hobbies, discovered new things I love, and had plenty of time to explore exactly what it is in life I enjoy doing.

However, corny as it sounds, one of the positives of this year is that I got the chance to try all sorts of new products out during lockdowns — many of which I absolutely adored. This year, skincare definitely reined supreme amongst products I both tried and loved — after all, there’s not much of a need to be buying heaps of makeup if you’re never leaving the house.

With all the products I tried, it WAS a little tricky to narrow it down to a top 10. However, I managed to narrow it down (in no particular order, of course). The following 10 products are the best new products I tried this year (not all of them are new this year, but they’re new to me). I really loved each and every one of these products — they’ve all become regulars in my daily routine, and many of them I would say are my fave products of all time. I’ve attached a little reasoning with each product about why exactly I love it so much, so that all of you know exactly what’s so great about them and whether they’d be something you’d love too!

Top 10 Products I Tried in 2020

Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask

Why I love it: I only use this mask a wash off mask (not overnight), but even after 10 minutes it leaves my face feeling brand new. It’s packed full of AHA’s and hyaluronic acid, which always leaves my face feeling soft, fresh, and plump. Plus, it clears up my skin and really makes it glow.

Check out this product at Sephora!

Milk Makeup’s Hydro Grip Primer

Why I love it: This primer basically acts like a glue that holds all of your makeup in place, all day, though anything. It has a smoothing effect, allowing your makeup to apply as flawlessly as possible. Plus, it’s hydrating AF and actually leaves my skin feeling pretty great.

Check out this product at Sephora!

Herbivore Botanical’s Lapis Blue Tansy Face Oil

Why I love it: This balancing oil helps to reduce redness and fix blemishes, leaving your skin looking clear and flawless. It’s not too heavy, and it’s squalene component helps to rebuild your skins barrier and protect it from dirt and pollutants.

Check out this product at Sephora!

Charlotte Tilbury’s Instant Eyeshadow Palette in Pillow Talk

Why I love it: This palette! Ugh. It was love at first use. This palette was my first time trying Charlotte Tilbury, but it’s totally sold me on the whole brand. These shadows are so blendable and produce ZERO fallout. The colours are super cute and delicate, and work well for everyday use. I can’t wait for the chance to try out more products by this brand.

While this palette was limited edition, Charlotte Tilbury still has many great products to check out at Sephora!

Glow Recipe’s Avocado Melt Retinol Sleeping Mask

Why I love it: I only tried this mask out recently, but I’ve already fallen in love. I was hoping to add a little retinol into my skincare routine — but only a small amount. I had tried their eye cream version in the past and while I loved it, I wasn’t sure I was ready to commit to daily retinol (since it can do some harm if you’re not careful). This was the perfect medium — it leaves my skin looking FLAWLESS, and I don’t have to worry about using it wrong/mixing in wrong ingredients since I only use it occasionally. Now I get all the benefits of retinol, without any of the stress!

Check out this product at Sephora!

Biossance’s Squalane + Tea Tree Detox Mask

Why I love it: This is the perfect mask for anyone who’s skin is just a liiiiittle too sensitive for charcoal clay masks. I often find that while charcoal clay masks work for me, they leave my skin feeling a little irritated after. This masks clears up my skin while leaving it feeling softer than before — and it’s absolutely one of my all-time faves.

Check out this product at Sephora!

Huda Beauty’s Pastel Obsessions Eyeshadow Palettes

Why I love it: These palettes may be tiny, but they pack a lot of punch. They’re super pigmented and the colours are always stunning. The pastel colours are super on-trend for this year, and each palette comes with enough colours to create a wide range of diverse looks. 10/10, would recommend.

Check out this product at Sephora!

Sulwhasoo’s Bloomstay Vitalizing Eye Cream

Why I love it: I’ve always had issues with my under eyes, but this eye cream has honestly solved a lot of my problems. Since purchasing this cream, my under eyes have been nice and full and bright, and my fine lines and milia have been fading in a big way. This stuff may be pricey, but it’s totally worth it.

Check out this product at Sephora!

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask

Why I love it: This stuff is the ultimate cure to chapped lips, IMO. One layer, one night and your lips will be feeling good as new the next day. It works so effectively, it actually lasts all night and the effects last all day. For real — my lips have been brand new ever since I tried this lip mask, and I can’t wait to try out more of Laneige’s products because of it.

Check out this product at Sephora!

Shu Uemura’s Anti/Oxi Skin Refining Cleansing Oil

Why I love it: Double cleansing WORKS. It helps to remove dirt that water-based cleansers don’t, especially SPF and other oil-based grime. My skin has felt so clean ever since starting. I haven’t tried any other oil-based cleansers, to be fair, but this stuff is just fantastic.

Check out this product at Sephora!

My Top 5 Brands of 2020

Since skincare has been the main event of my life this year, my top 5 brands of this year naturally ended up being entirely skincare (unlike last year where I did 5 skincare and 5 makeup brands). Unlike my favourite products of the year, these aren’t necessarily brands I tried for the first time this year, just the brands that topped my faves list by the end of the year (and all amazing brands that I could not recommend more).

Glow Recipe

Credit: @glowrecipe on Instagram

Herbivore Botanicals

Credit: @herbivorebotanicals on Instagram

Biossance

Credit: @biossance on Instagram

Ouai

Credit: @theouai on Instagram

Fresh

Credit: @freshbeauty on Instagram

Top 5 Brands I’m Excited To Try in 2021

This one sort of speaks for itself — these following five brands are all brands that I’m hoping to get the chance to try sometime during 2021! I already got the chance to try 3/5 of the brands on my list last year — and they of all ended up being my newfound faves. Here’s to trying out more brands and discovering new favourite products in 2021!

Tatcha

Credit: @tatcha on Instagram

Melt Cosmetics

Credit: @meltcosmetics on Instagram

Patrick Ta

Credit: @patricktabeauty on Instagram

Supergoop!

Credit: @supergoop on Instagram

Summer Fridays

Credit: @summerfridays on Instagram

And there you have it! What a year it’s been. It’s kinda crazy thinking back on it all — trying out some of these products for the first time feels like a whole lifetime ago. We’re so close to 2021 now, however, and I honestly can’t wait to see what it brings. Maybe it’ll be good, maybe it’ll be bad — but at least it’ll be a fresh start.

Stay tuned for next weeks post, where I detail 20 life lessons I learned in 2020! This year has taught me a lot, and it’s always important to reflect back on what life has taught us in order to ensure we don’t forget. While this year has certainly been a challenge, it doesn’t have to be all bad –it’s important that we all take time to look back on what this year has taught us, and take these lessons into the future to better ourselves and the world we live in.

As well, over the next few weeks I’ll be dropping my review of my FIRST-EVER ColourPop Cosmetics haul (one of the companies on my list of brands to try in 2020 last year!) and my winter FabFitFun unboxing. As well, I have some exciting content planned for new year, so stay tuned!

Much love,

Meredith

Holiday Gift Guide #4: Makeup Edition!

Hey y’all!

December is officially under way and the holidays are going to be upon us before we know it. It’s easy to fall into the trap of getting pretty stressed out around this time of year — there can be a lot of pressure leading up to the holiday season, and it can be a crazy busy time for all of us and the year comes to an end. However, the holidays really shouldn’t be stressful — they’re supposed to be a time of joy, after all! — but ya know, sometimes that’s easier said than done.

It’s particularly easy this year to let the holidays sneak up on you before you even realize what’s happening, leaving you unprepared. After all, what even is time anymore in COVID? Do any of us truly know what day it is? Probably not. So if you haven’t completed your shopping yet, don’t worry — you’re definitely not alone. Cut yourself a little slack — it’s been a crazy year. If you’re still needing to get some shopping done and are in need of some ideas, I have you covered. Almost every item on this list is good for all makeup users, regardless of skin tone or skin type. As well, all these items can be found at Sephora, which tends to ship pretty quickly (within Canada, at least), so you’ll have plenty time to pick out some items and get them shipped and ready. (And of course, if the person you’re buying gifts for isn’t super into makeup, you can always check out my previous gift guides on Self Care, Skincare, and Lifestyle!).

Urban Decay All Nighter Pollution Protection Setting Spray

I figured that I’d start off with a product that truly would work for anyone on your list, regardless of their skin tone, skin type, or preferences. This setting spray by Urban Decay is a total classic, and one of the best products I own. One coat of this stuff, and your makeup will not move even a bit all day. Not even a little. It won’t fade, smudge, or wear off in areas that are oily or even high-contact (ie. under your mask). This stuff WORKS. Plus, it can be universally gifted to anyone who wears makeup — they’ll be sure to love it.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Huda Beauty Obsessions Palettes

Obsession palettes was a super fitting name for this product, because I’m completely obsessed with them. These palettes come in a wide variety of colours and themes, from neon, and pastel, to nude and jewel tones. These palettes are nice and pocket sized, making them great for compact makeup collections or travel — but don’t let their tiny size fool you, they pack a lot of pigment, making them last endlessly. These are some of my favourite eyeshadow palettes that I’ve ever owned, and I couldn’t recommend them more as a gift.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Eyeliner

Stila’s liquid liner is, IMO, the penultimate liquid eyeliner. This liners been my go-to since high school, and it’s never let me down. This liner is SUPER pigmented, and comes with a solid felt tip that makes it easy to apply. Seriously — this liner comes out in the blackest black I’ve ever seen an eyeliner come. For any winged liner fans in your life, this liner will make the PERFECT gift.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Primer & NARS Pro-Prime Eyeshadow Base

This is another gift that’s pretty universally good for any makeup lover in your life, regardless of what they’re into or they’re skin tone/skin type. Makeup primer is something all makeup users likely use, and if not — they might like to give these a try! These are, hands down, the two most effective primers I’ve ever used in my life and I could not recommend either of them more. Milk Makeup’s Hydro grip primer is hydrating, lightweight, and provides a smoothing effect. Most importantly — it holds your makeup in place ALL day (even under a mask!). As well, NARS’s Pro-Prime shadow base is the only shadow primer I’ve ever used that holds your shadow perfectly in place for hours on end — it doesn’t crease, smudge, or fade (and I’ve accidentally fallen asleep with it on before). These both will make great gifts for any makeup lover you’re looking to spoil — no matter how picky they are.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out Milk Makeup’s primer and NARS’s shadow base online at Sephora!

Kaja Mochi Pop Bouncy Blush

This is a product I tried recently and totally fell in love with. This little cream-powder blush is easy to apply and makes a great everyday, simple-look blush. It’s cute, shimmery, and has a super-unique formula so that, contrary to other cream blushes, doesn’t stay sticky or need to be set the same way. Even if you have someone on your list that isn’t crazy into makeup that you’re still needing a gift for, this blush makes a great addition to any simple, every-day makeup collection.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder

This is another product I tried recently and was blown away by. I’m a big fan of the “dewey” makeup look, so I love adding in a little shimmer wherever I can. This finishing powder is meant to be applied over your face (or just areas you’re hoping to add a little extra glow to) after you’ve finished your makeup to add just a little extra shine. It really adds just a small shimmer, so you won’t look shiny or oily, but just a little dewey — and it makes my makeup look even more flawless and natural, IMO. It comes in a couple shades, but it isn’t like foundation where you’ll need to know someone’s skin tones/under tones to buy a perfect match — especially since it is so sheer. If you have a dewey/natural makeup lover in your life who’s always looking for a little extra glow, I could NOT recommend this finishing powder more.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer

Is there a soul out there who’s tried Fenty’s Universal Lip Luminzer who HASN’T loved it? Seriously, this stuff is the best and I’d own it in every shade if I could. Fenty Beauty is so high quality and made to have products that are flattering for all. The original and light pink shades of this gloss are classic shades you can’t go wrong with, and the two clear shades look like they’d be a fantastic addition to any collection (I’m hoping to get my hands on them myself!). These glosses are long-lasting, and they don’t bleed into your skin at all. 10/10, would make a fantastic gift.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Sephora Luxe False Lashes

This last one is a great for any lash-lovers, or any makeup users who’ve been wishing to test out lashes but don’t where to start. These lashes are the BEST, most realistic lashes I have ever used. They’re fluffy and beautiful, plus they come with a clear strip that’s very flexible — making it work well with all eye shapes. I find that these are great beginner lashes, since they have such flexible strips and fit so easily along your lash line. Honestly, if my lashes could look like mine do when I’m wearing these 24/7, I’d be the happiest I’ve ever been.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

And that wraps up this year’s gift guide! I hope that you’ve all enjoyed it — I really put in a lot of effort putting this together for you all this year. Hopefully you’ve all got good, safe, socially-distanced plan for the holidays this year — whether that means with the family under your roof, your SO, your roommates, or even alone. Hopefully, along with this online list of gift ideas, you’ll be able to stay home and safe this holiday season.

Sending you all so much love right now! I have a number of exciting posts planned out for you over the final weeks of 2020, so stay tuned for that! I have a number of posts lined up, from a FabFitFun unboxing, to a little round up of 2020, a look back at 2020 and my very first ever ColourPop haul. I’m so excited to share them all with you, and I hope you’re all just as excited to read them!

Much love y’all — please stay safe this holiday season!

Xo,

Meredith

Thursday Favourites: August 13th

Hey y’all!

Hope everyone’s been having a fantastic week so far! I’ve actually been pretty busy these last few weeks, between finishing up tasks and trying to squeeze in some socializing before fall (and a potential second wave comes). However, I do have some exciting news — not only have I finally finished decorating my room, but also I’ll be getting my first tattoo this weekend! Stay tuned the next two weekends, where I’ll be sharing posts detailing both more in depth for you all!

But that’s for later on. Today, I wanted to share a new favourite product of mine — NARS Laguna Paradise Found bronzer!

When it comes to makeup, my favourite part to complete is my cheeks. I’ve never had the chance to share any of my favourite cheek products with you all, as I haven’t used up/replaced any of my absolute staples since I began this blog. After all, I want to make sure I can take pictures of these products when they’re pretty and fresh for you guys! In the last year, though, I’ve been branching out and trying new products on my cheeks — and while my staples remain my favourites, I’ve tried out a couple new products that I absolutely adore and still think are worth sharing with you guys.

One of these products is NARS’s Laguna Bronzer — the one I have is their Paradise Found limited edition version with a golden overspray on top. I won’t lie — I actually bought this product on a complete whim. I already use two bronzers in my usual routine, which seemed like enough as is. But NARS is one of my favourite brands, especially for cheek products (one of their blushes is my holy grail everyday go-to) so when I saw this product, I just decided to go for it.

When I initially received and swatched this product, I honestly didn’t think I was gonna like it at first. The sheen of gold glitter coated on top seemed odd, and the swatch didn’t seem like it was all to pigmented. However, when it comes to makeup, there is more than matters about pigmentation — which is definitely true of this bronzer. Lower pigmentation can actually be a good thing for cheek products — as counterintuitive as that sounds. It can be really easy to go a little overboard with bronzer, blush and contour — so having a product that’s buildable rather than pigmented can actually make life a lot easier.

That’s exactly what I ended up loving most about this product — it’s so blendable and buildable that it almost looks as if it was airbrushed on when you apply it. Not only does that make it easy enough for anyone to use (even those who aren’t super familiar with using bronzer), but allows a truly flawless sunkissed look no matter what makeup look you’re going for. While it’s a powder, it has a rich, creamy texture that gives it a really seamless-looking effect when applied. Plus, it doesn’t take much to build this bronzer up to a good amount of product — it isn’t so light that it’s impossible to build. Ultimately, it’s lighter pigmentation just makes it easier to build and blend — rather than an ineffective or difficult product.

Unfortunately, this exact product was limited edition — but that only means you can’t get it with the golden glitter spray on top. If you’ve been needing a bronzer like this to add to your collection, no worries — NARS offers it in both matte and shimmer.

I hope everyone’s been doing well and staying healthy! These last few weeks have been kind of hectic but I feel like I may finally be on the verge of getting my life just a littttllleeee back on track (I don’t want to jinx it though!). I’m so excited for the next couple blog posts and the content I have planned out to share with you all, so be sure to stay tuned this and next Sunday to read all about everything I’ve been up to! I’ll be sharing how I decorated my bedroom with you all this weekend — I hope you’re all ready to see how it turned out!

Much love,

Meredith