July Ipsy Bag

My 2nd last bag. This month's theme is summer lovin'. The actual bag is nice and summery but nothing too special in my opinion. However the bag's contents were pretty good this month. 

Nicka K New York HQ Quad Eyeshadow
I honestly didn't have high hopes for this $5 palette but was pleasantly surprised. The packaging is very attractive with rose gold detail. The shadows are actually very pigmented and the rosy colours are pretty. While the shadows aren't the most blendable and there is some fallout, overall it's a good palette. 

Jersey Shore Cosmetics Mongongo Vanilla Coconut Cream Lip Conditioner 

This products smells amazing and it's very moisturizing. It's also organic and has a bunch of good stuff in it. It retails for $10.

Teeez Cosmetics Read my Lips Lipstick in Kissing Me Softly
This was by far my favourite products in this month's bag. It's even made it to Europe with me. It's a gorgeous matte coral but it's neutral enough to be wearable for everyday. It's also really comfortable and long lasting. It retails for $22.

City Color Cosmetics HD Powder
Translucent setting powders like this have never been my favourite but this one is pretty good. It's really finely milled, it blurs any imperfections and mattifies your skin. Like always with these powders you need to beware the white caste with flash photos. It retails for $5.99.

Eva NYC Freshen Up Dry Shampoo
I have tried a lot of dry shampoos but this may be one of my new favourites. It didn't come out white, it made my hair feel clean and the smell isn't too offensive. I may have to get a bigger size when I run out of this sample. The small size retails for $10 and the full size is $24.

Overall a very good bag this month. The total value of the products was $52.

My UK Travel Makeup Bag

As I mentioned in previous posts I'm travelling to the UK this summer. I'll be gone for just over 3 weeks. (As you read this I'll have already started my journey). I know I'm going to be buying some makeup so I don't want to take too much. 

 This is the travel bag I've been using for the last few years. It's big so it works well for me. I pack makeup on one side and the rest of my beauty products on the other. I'll just be talking about my beauty products in this post but I'm bringing all the regular toiletries as well.
 For skincare I'm not taking much. I have Yes to Carrot Wipes to remove my makeup. Holidays are the only time I use makeup wipes as they're quick and easy. I also have some body lotion in a travel size container. I decanted my Body Shop Vitamin E Sink in Moisture Mask -my skin always gets terribly dry on trips- and my Body Shop Aloe Cleansing Lotion. For face cream I have my Origins GinZing moisturizer. And of course I never go anywhere without my Clean and Clear Spot Treatment.
For my hair I have a travel eva nyc up all night volumizing spray and a Batiste dry shampoo. The travel Shampoo and Conditioner set is from my hairdresser's brand.
For my base I'm only taking my Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream and my Maybelline Fit Me Concealer. This BB cream is too dark for me to use in the winter but it should be the perfect match for me on my trip plus it has SPF 35. The concealer can be used for spots and under the eye.
 For my eyes I have my favourite Tarte Lights Camera Lashes Mascara, my Chella eyebrow pencil, my Estee Lauder Brow Setting Gel and my Urban Decay 24/7 Liner in Demolition. With the exception of my mascara, I was aiming for small products here.
For lips I have my favourite Lipstick NYX Butter Lipstick in Pops. For some colour I have this Teeez lipstick in Killing me Softly (see my July Ipsy Bag review). I have ChapStick in the Cake Batter flavour and my beloved Revlon Kissable Balm Stain in Honey.
 I have mini sizes of Urban Decay's All Nighter Setting Spray and Lorac Behind the Scenes Eye Primer.
 For palettes I'm taking only one eyeshadow palette, Too Faced Natural Eyes is perfect for travel and has every neutral colour I would want. I also have my Urban Decay Flushed palette in Native as it has a bronzer, highlighter and blush in a compact case with a large mirror.
For brushes I tried to take as few as possible. For foundation and concealer I have my Real Techniques Expert Face Brush. For Blush and Bronzer I have the Real Techniques Multipurpose Brush. I have brush protectors over those. For my eyes I have my Zoeva 227 and 231 and I have 2 double ended brushes the Naked 2 brush and the c476 Crown Brush. I'm bringing more eye brushes so I can do different looks without cleaning my brushes.

HELP- UK Product Recommendations???

I made a similar post about a month ago but now I'm less than a week away from my UK adventure. I got a lot of good suggestions last time I made this post so I thought I'd give it one more chance. 

What products or brands would you recommend I get when I'm in the UK???

I guess I'm specifically looking for Drugstore (or High Street) recommendations. So far Soap & Glory as well as Bourjois and Collection were mentioned. Please leave a comment below naming some of your favourite products and if I end up buying a product you recommend I'll give your blog a shout out in my haul post when I come back :)

If you'd like to talk makeup or recommendations my twitter handle is @makeupbymeggy

Thank you for any recommendations!!

Empties #4

I've amassed enough products to do an empties post again. I love finishing products as there's such a sense of satisfaction to it. I also love reading other people's empties posts because you can tell how a person really feels about a product after they finish it.

Maybelline Dream Wonder Powder 
I think this is my favourite powder from the drugstore. It's creamy and doesn't accentuate my dry patches. It also has a little bit of coverage without being cakey. 
Longevity? About 8 months of daily use.
Repurchase? Yes.

Jordana FabuLiner Liquid Eye Liner in Black
I picked this up when I was in Chicago last summer. This liquid liner was only $2 but it's really great. It has a fine tip that never frayed. It was also matte which I really love in a liquid liner.
Longevity? 6 months of regular use.
Repurchase? Yes (but as far as I know you can't get Jordana products in Canada).

e.o.s Lip Balm in Sweet Mint
This isn't my favourite lip balm as it's not the most moisturizing but it tastes good and this mint flavour makes my lips tingle which I liked. I used this as my nightly lip balm as I especially liked it after I brushed my teeth. 
Longevity? About a year of nightly use.
Repurchase? Possibly.

The Body Shop Almond Hand and Nail Cream
This is a very good, moisturizing hand cream. It has a wonderful sweet nutty scent that isn't at all over powering. It's also not greasy. This was the smaller size.
Longevity? A month of daily use.
Repurchase? Yes but I'd get the bigger size.

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer
I can see why this is one of the most talked about concealers by beauty lovers. It's really creamy and has really good coverage. The only downside is that it's so expensive.
Longevity? About 8 months.
Repurchase? Yes!!

Aveeno Fresh Essentials Nourishing Moisturizer with SPF 30
For the summer months I like to use a daily moisturizer with SPF. So far I've never found one that I really like. This one was a little too greasy to wear under foundation. I didn't quite finish this bottle last summer but it's expired now. If anyone has suggestions for a good moisturizer with SPF I'd love to hear them.
Longevity? N/A
Repurchase? No.

The Body Shop Coconut Body Butter
I feel like I always have a body butter in my empties. I like the thicker and more moisturizing body butters in the winter so this one was perfect. It keeps my skin hydrated. Plus this one smelled lovely. 
Longevity? 6 months of nightly use.
Repurchase? Yes.

Another product I always seem to have in my empties. Bioderma is one of my most holy grail products. I got the largest bottle you can get (500 ml). It takes all of my makeup off with ease. I'll never be without it.
Longevity? About 8 months daily use.  
Repurchase? Always!

Bodycology Sweet Petals Foaming Body Wash
It's the product that never ends. It seemed like I was using this body wash forever. It smells really good and it lathers up nicely but I think after all this time I'm ready for something new.
Longevity? Almost 2 years!
Repurchase? No.

Quick Sephora Haul

Here's just a quick haul with some of the things I've gotten from Sephora in the past few weeks.

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal ($19)
I mentioned this in my June favourites. From the second I applied this I knew I was in love. This highlight gives the best, most natural, lit from within glow of any makeup product I've ever owned. It has already reached holy grail status from me and it's only been a few weeks. I wish I'd gotten the larger size bottle.

First Aid Beauty Spring Skin Savers Set ($54)
I got this set mostly for the Ultra Repair Cream (reg. $30) which was a repurchase for me. It was only a little bit more money to get the set and I got to try out 3 more full sized products. It includes a full sized Skin Rescue Purifying Mask (reg. $30) which works on my dry, sensitive skin. It's a peel off mask which I love because it's less messy. It leaves my skin feeling soft and my pores looking smaller. I also got the Ultra Repair Liquid Recovery (reg $38) which seems like magical water. I don't really understand how it works. It looks, feels and smells like water but it makes my skin feel more hydrated. I think I'll need to use it longer to see the full effects. The last item in the set was the Face Cleanser (reg. $10) which might have become my new favourite cleanser. It makes my skin feel clean without over drying it. I can see why it's so popular.

Laura's Flawless in 5
I finally cashed in my Sephora points on the 500 point perk which included 5 sample size Laura Mercier products. Included in the reward was the Matte Radiance Baked Powder in Bronze 03, the Flawless Skin Face Polish, the Tinted Moisturizer, the Foundation Primer in Radiance Bronze and a Lip Glace in Nectar. I don't have anything else from Laura Mercier so this was a good way to try a bunch of products.

Canada Shopping Guide


Last Canada Day I made a similar post but it is a mess (I'm not even going to link it). It's also not completely accurate anymore (Canada lost all of its Target stores) so I thought I would redo the post. That post was aimed more at Canadians looking to buy international drugstore brands that can be harder to find. I'm gearing this post more towards my International Followers who may find themselves in Canada this summer looking for different makeup brands to try.

If you're looking for high end brands, your best bet is Sephora or The Bay. Both have a large selection of luxury products. The brands can vary depending on the store's location but most popular high end brands are featured. Sears is another department store that carries a smaller section of brands usually including Clinique, Lancome, and Estee Lauder. There are also stand alone stores such as MAC that can usually be found in malls.

I'll start with the accessible drugstore brands that can be found at almost every drugstore. These include Revlon, L'Oreal, Maybelline, Covergirl, Rimmel, Physicians Formula, Almay and N.Y.C. I will not be spending anymore time on these brands because many are international and if not, they can be found at pretty much any Canadian drugstore.
Specific Canadian drugstore brands include Annabelle and Marcelle. Both of which can be found in most Canadian drugstores.

Disclaimer: Harder brands to find can depend on location of the store and their stock. My explanation is based on the brands I can find in drugstores in my Canadian city. The drugstores chains may also vary depending on province.

I'm starting with what I believe to be the best place to buy makeup outside of department stores or beauty retailers such as Sephora. Most Shoppers will have a Beauty Boutique that includes high end brands such as Benefit, Smashbox, Stila, Lancome etc. On the drugstore side Shoppers usually stocks essence, Gosh, Bioderma, Quo (house brand) and Soap and Glory body products with the occasional lip product. I have even found certain shoppers that carry Bourjois (although they jack up the price like crazy, I'm talking $30 foundations here).

Rexall carries drugstore brands such as Bioderma, Wet & Wild and NYX as well as the more expensive brand theBalm. For brushes, many Rexall's now carry Real Techniques. Rexall also now offers the brands Vasanti as well as Sweet Lei Lani and Emani which both sell vegan cosmetics.

London Drugs sells a bit of everything. I would compare it to Walmart. Similar to the drugstores above, London Drugs sells brands such as NYX, Real Techniques, Prestige, E.L.F. and Wet & Wild. But they also have a high end section that sells brands like Elizabeth Arden, Lancome, Clarins, Lise Waiter and Cargo.

Superstore focuses heavily on food, however it has a decent beauty section that carries all the popular drugstore brands as well as Joe Fresh and Milani.

Obviously this is nothing special to Canada but I thought I would throw it in here last. Walmart carries Flower, Wet & Wild, Milani, Real Techniques and Hard Candy.

I hope this post can be of some help. If anyone is travelling to Canada this summer or hopes to one day travel here in the future let me know where you're planning on going! It's a great country in the summer. I promise it's not cold :)