I’ll Take Some Green Tea With My Perfume, Please

I’ll Take Some Green Tea With My Perfume, Please

I find tea based perfumes so easy to wear. They are perfect for when I’m looking for that Goldilocks perfume in my collection – not too strong, not too soft, not too floral, not too woodsy – just right. A tea perfume is perfect for any time of day and any occasion. Perfumes with tea are perfect for when you feel like a soothing, calming scent versus a bombshell perfume. There is a time for that as well, but sometimes one just wants to smell lovely. I adore CB I Hate Perfume’s Russian Caravan Tea perfume, which is based on black tea.

Green tea scents have a fresh, clean summery vibe. This gorgeous citrus perfume family changed the way we look at perfume and ushered in the era of fresh watery clean perfumes. Sadly, Mugler Angel undid all of that, but that’s another story (apologies to Angel lovers).  This season has seen some new perfume releases featuring gorgeous tea notes. They are all a bit different, with different notes playing with the tea.

The Body Shop Fuji Green Tea

The Body Shop Fuji Green Tea: Ah, Body Shop! You did it! You reintroduced one of the cleanest, freshest and energizing tea notes in perfume history! It all started with Bvlgari Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert which launched in 1992. Fuji Green Tea reminds me a lot of the original green tea perfume that started it all, but it’s less complicated, with more airy watery notes vs the Bvlgari which has spices. I LOVE Fuji Green Tea, and the body and bath line elevates the perfume to a whole other level of heaven. The bath tea and body exfoliating scrub are simply divine. And the Fuji Green Tea Body Butter is as delicious as any Body Shop body butter. Seriously, does anyone do buttery body lotions better? The best part of Body Shop Fuji Green Tea is the price point. It does not smell cheap at all and at around $20 is the perfect way to satisfy your green tea perfume craving without breaking the bank. I have also been spritzing my bed linens with this in the morning when I make the bed. I want to spray it everywhere!

Thomas Sabo Charm Rose Beach

Thomas Sabo Charm Rose Beach: Ok here is a perfume that took me totally by surprise. I was intrigued by a Thomas Sabo scent, as I didn’t even know they made perfumes. Rose and Beach both sounded interesting but to be honest, my expectations were not that high. One sniff and I snapped out of my perfume ennui. Charm Rose Beach (the name needs work…) is so pretty I fell in love instantly! The winning notes for me were the green tea, oceanic and citrus notes. Seriously – summer in a bottle! I can’t stop sniffing my arm when I wear this. It’s like sitting by the ocean sipping iced green tea with lime. Sort of like Hermes Eau de Merveilles and Bvlgari Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert had a beach baby. LOVE. Availability of this one might be tricky. It seems to be sold out on the Canadian website.

Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Teazzurra

Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Teazzurra: Oh, mama. This is my new Holy Grail of summery tea perfumes. Elegant and serenely beautiful green tea made delicious by grapefruit and yuzu. Seriously, this is such a beautifully blended scent, as only Guerlain and Thierry Wasser could create. Top it all off with the classic Guerlain vanilla and musk with some oceanic notes and you have an irresistible tea perfume. I can’t get enough of this one. It’s soft enough, in true Aqua Allegoria style, that I can spray myself head to toe without worrying about offending anyone. Yet, I still smell it on my skin hours later, like a whisper of the ocean. I am getting a back up bottle of this beauty, as one never knows if a seasonal Guerlain release will make it into the permanent collection.

To sum it up, tea perfume lovers you need all of these!

 

Charlotte Tilbury And Embracing My Golden Goddess

Charlotte Tilbury And Embracing My Golden Goddess

I am so in love with the gorgeous Charlotte Tilbury line! From her skincare to her makeup, I’m a fan. I was so thrilled to be invited to participate in the Canadian launch of Charlotte Tilbury with Holt Renfrew by showing you one of her gorgeous looks. I recreated the Charlotte Tilbury Golden Goddess look with this gorgeous collection, and Canadians can now join me!

Charlotte Tilbury Golden Goddess Look

The look includes these incredible Charlotte Tilbury goodies:

Full Fat Lashes in Glossy Black This mascara is super luxe! It has sexy volume that is perfect for a beachy party look. Full Fat Lashes are voluminous and fluttery, and apply beautifully.

Chic to Cheek in Ecstasy (the perfect bronze-y blush) Gah! What can I say about this stunning blush/bronzer combination? A few swipes of this and you have a perfect tan and blushy pink flush. The kind that can only be found after spending the day on a beach in the heat of the sun. Adore!

Luxury Palette The Golden Goddess (obviously) I used the bone shade, Prime, all over my lids for a gorgeous soft buildable glow. I used the taupe, Enhance, to outline my brow bone and along my lower lash line. Then, a wash of the STUNNING shimmering bronze shade, Pop, all over the lid. The texture is a perfect finely milled shadow that melts into the skin and literally glows. Love!

The Classic Eyeliner Powder Pencil in Sophia (heavenly texture that applies like a dream) I tightlined this powdery bronze pencil along my upper and lower lash line, and smudged it above the upper lashes as well.

Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk (one of my favourite items from the collection! Genius!) GUYS. This is the perfect *YLBB shade of pink that is perfect for lining slightly outside the lip line. It gives a pouty pillowy effect that is genius.

K.I.S.S.I.N.G. in Stoned Rose (the prettiest Marsala shade evah) I used a brush with this and have to say I loved this shade. It was a bit more orange/coral than I expected and plus I’m so fixated on blue-pink shades. How wrong I was. It’s gorgeous and I love it. It really does emphasize the golden tones of the look and in my skin and hair. Stoned Rose is the perfect summer shade.

Lip Lustre in Ibiza Nights (officially my favourite gold lip gloss of all time) Lip gloss perfection! This buttery smooth golden gloss is the easiest way to gild your lips with creamy, non sticky golden glitter. It has a satin vinyl effect and is full of lip loving ingredients that plump and soften your lips. Having healthy lips that feel good are pretty lips. Ibiza Nights is always in my makeup bag, the perfect way to take a day lip to night.

Tilbury Golden Goddess Jane Daly dalybeauty

 

Tilbury Golden Goddess Jane Daly dalybeauty

 

Tilbury Golden Goddess Jane Daly dalybeauty

 


Charlotte Tilbury products are now available in Canada at Holt Renfrew on Bloor in Toronto and in Vancouver.

 

*Your Lips But Better

Show Some Skin: Bioderma, Hampton Sun, Charlotte Tilbury & Nuxe

Show Some Skin: Bioderma, Hampton Sun, Charlotte Tilbury & Nuxe

It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, I love having soft touchable skin that looks as good as it feels. When it comes to peel off those jeans and don sundresses and shorts, I like to feel glam despite being in a dark nightmarish winter cave with no sunshine for months. No need to worry because tanned and toned skin is a bottle (or two) away.

Bioderma Photoderm Self Tanner

 I will always love St Tropez self tanning mousse, but I have a new self tanner that I adore. Bioderma Photoderm Self Tanner is easy to use and gradual, which means it is almost foolproof. It has built in moisturizers that condition and protect the skin, while giving it the perfect glow, with no orange and no bad smells. It actually smells soft and nice. I make sure to exfoliate, head to toe, in the shower. Then, I moisturize with one of my favourite moisturizers, and let my skin absorb it, making sure to add extra lotion on my knees, elbows, hands and feet. Then, I mist myself, head to toe, and ask my daughter to do my back and the backs of my legs. I do a little bit of blending, then let it dry while I do my hair and makeup. I will do this two or three times to get a nice glow on, then maintain with a once weekly misting.

Now that you have your tan on, lets add some glow! I have a couple products that never fail to make my skin glow.

Hampton Sun Bronze Shimmer Cooling Spray

Hampton Sun Bronze Shimmer Cooling Spray ($32 US) may be my favourite body product to date. It mists on like a dream, in a soft even mist, leaving only the softest shimmer behind. It’s full of skin-nourishing goodness as well, with aloe, chamomile, grape seed extract and vitamins A through E. And, with that heavenly Hampton Sun Privet Bloom fragrance, I feel like I’m on a east coast beach holiday with sunkissed skin, ready to break out some crisp white linen, or my favourite sundress. Seriously, this product is a must – have for all you sun goddesses (and gods!) out there.

Charlotte Tilbury Supermodel Body

Charlotte Tilbury is the queen of glowing skin! Seriously, this beauty line has everyone you need to get your glow on. The Charlotte Tilbury Supermodel Body ($78) is utter genius. It is gorgeous bronze shimmery “precious metal” cream that is basically a golden highlighter for your body. How does that work? Well, you highlight what you want to emphasize. A popular beauty trick is to add a soft line of highlighter down the bridge of the nose – this draws the eye and gives the appearance of a smaller, slimmer nose. Using shimmery body makeup the same way has been a trick photographers have used for years, and now we can do the same! Trust me – it is more subtle than it sounds, and just adds a sexy contour to your legs and/or arms. Supermodel Body has a metal applicator that rolls and cools the skin while applying a perfect amount of product on the legs. A little goes a long way, and this tube will last me ages. I blend it out a little bit and boom – I’m ready for the cat walk.

Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse

You don’t think I’d make this list and leave out Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse, did you? Come on! I like the big bottle, with the spray. I think all body oil products should have sprays. It just makes application that much easier. I have been raving about the delicately scented and beautifully moisturizing Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse for years. You can read about it here.

How do you like to glow?

 

 

Bioderma and Nuxe are sold at drugstores in Canada, Charlotte Tilbury is sold online and at select stores in the USA and at Holt Renfrew Toronto & Vancouver in Canada as of July 2015. Hampton Sun is available at select stores and online.

Effortlessly Chic: Goop + Jin Soon Classic Nail Polish Collections

Effortlessly Chic: Goop + Jin Soon Classic Nail Polish Collections

Renowned nail artist Jin Soon Choi has created two exclusive nail polish sets for Gwyneth Paltrow’s lifestyle site Goop.

Known for her elegant simplicity, Jin Soon Choi is one of the most influential nail artists in the industry. Born in Korea, Jin moved to New York City in 1991 and quickly built a reputation as a rising freelance nail artist. Jin soon earned a loyal following as the go-to manicurist of top editors, photographers, designers and celebrities. Crowned the “Nail Guru” by The New York Times Magazine, Jin is best known for her ability to pinpoint current and emerging trends and translate them into the art of nail design. Her range is 5-free (of harsh chemicals) and formulated with high-tech polymers and resins that ensure long wear and a shiny finish.

Goop.com is a place where Gwyneth Paltrow introduces and shares her favourite things. I am a huge fan of her beauty picks, and would love to raid her beauty stash. I love that she collaborated with Jin Soon, whose understated and elegant chic style is a perfect match for Goop. Their two collections are must-have for nail polish lovers anywhere. I love these two colours and can’t wait to play with them all! Jin Soon Demure, the perfect beige-y nude, and Vanity, the hottest candy red ever, are both exclusive to goop, and instant favourites.

Jin Soon Good Demure nail polis

jin soon goop Vanity Demure

 

 

 

The Jin Soon goop collections are available on the goop website for $48USD each.

Body Lotion Lovin’ … Vichy, Say Yes To Coconut, Nip+Fab & DermaE

Body Lotion Lovin’ … Vichy, Say Yes To Coconut, Nip+Fab & DermaE

I suppose if I had one skincare mantra it would be “moisturize, moisturize, moisturize”. Well, that and “always wash your face before bedtime”. And “exfoliate”. But seriously, moisturize. My bedside table and bathroom counter are practically collapsing under the weight of my prodz. People there is always something to try! And, unless it’s awful stuff or gives me a rash, I use up every drop. And the drugstore is my favourite place for body products. These days, one can get super discount to luxury products at the drugstore. I could linger in the skincare section for days. I’ve used soooo many it’s hard to keep track. Keri Lotion, Lubriderm and Nivea of course. I adore Nivea Soft and Nivea Q10, they are favourites but I’m always trying new stuff.

I loves me some soft, supple and glowing skin, and I also love the ritual of applying lotions and potions to my body as much as I do my face. You should see the contortions I’ve developed over the years to get that lotion everywhere. The only spot I can’t get is a small area in the middle of my back, but I haven’t given up…

 

derma e vitamin e intensive therapy body lotion

derma e Vitamin E Intensive Therapy Body Lotion (fragrance free)

The perfect basic moisturizing lotion for those who don’t like sticky, greasy or scents. It does what it says it does, which is moisturizes my skin beautifully. The fragrance-free option is perfect for perfume lovers who don’t want their body products to interfere even one bit with their perfume. I find it works best right after the shower when your skin is slightly damp. Full of naturally-sourced Vitamin E, this lotion delivers antioxidants, along with moisturizing and nourishing benefits. This derma e lotion helps your skin lock in moisture and defend itself against elemental stress and dryness. It’s also 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, gluten-free, GMO-free, phthalate-free, petrolatum-free, lanolin-free. Under $20. Love!

Yes To Coconuts Ultra Light Body Lotion Spray

Yes To Coconut Ultra Light Spray Body Lotion

I love this! Yes it’s light but it moisturizes beautifully. The application sprayer is a great design feature. I LOVE spraying on my moisturizer. Can more lotions do this please? The lovely and light formula contains virgin coconut and super-light jojoba oils which penetrate the skin beautifully. It’s perfect for those with dry skin that require intense moisturize. Go on and spray on softness! Petroleum, SLS and paraben free, it absorbs quickly and leaves my skin super soft. Yes, it smells a lot like coconuts, so I usually wear this to bed, unless the scent of coconuts goes with my perfume. I wish they would make this in a fragrance free version, but I like the way this makes my skin feel enough to use the coconutty one. Under $20.

Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Body

Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Body Cream

Ok – first let me say I am new to the Nip+Fab line. I saw it in my daughter’s bathroom (she heard about the line from Kylie Jenner) and after falling in love with the Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Pads and the matching serum, I knew I would like the body cream. I was right. I like an exfoliating body product, but the only one I have used recently that actually works, Lac Hydrin, does not smell good. I use it on my feet at bedtime but could not bear it head to toe. Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Body Cream smells like yummy grapefuits and feels soft and luxurious on the skin. It feels gentle, which makes me think the glycolic acid levels are not overly high. My skin does look smoother and less dry and papery since I’ve been using it. This cream has the odd property of almost mattifying the skin. It is pretty much the opposite of a shiny greasy cream. I love it. Also under $20.

Vichy Ideal Body Serum

Vichy Ideal Body Lait-Sérum

Ahhhh I love love love this! Pure luxury that feels, smells and makes me look terrific. I love this so much and use it on the parts of my body that are most likely to show signs of aging – décolleté, upper arms, bust, legs and knees especially. I am very pleased with the results, which are soft smooth skin that glows. I use it right after the bath or shower on damp skin. From the Vichy site:

For the 1st time, active ingredients traditionally used in face care: Hyaluronic Acid and LHA were combined with 10 fundamental oils to help women obtain ideal skin quality on the body: firmer, smoother and more radiant skin. Vichy Research discovered that lipids are essential agents for ideal skin quality. Anti-dryness, improved skin radiance and luminosity, smoothing, softness and firming action are the many benefits that the new Ideal Body range offers.

To me, it works like a facial serum in that the improvements that I see continue as long as I use the product. Is it a miracle product which will give me the skin of an eighteen year old? No. But does it help my aging, too-much-sun-had-as-a-teenager skin look smoother, softer and more even toned? Absolutely. It’s not sticky, and did I mention how lovely it smells? Between $20-30, depending on the size.

What are your favourite drugstore body lotions?

 

Perfume And Sound: Geza Schoen & Unsound’s Ephemera

Perfume And Sound: Geza Schoen & Unsound’s Ephemera

Sometimes perfumes smell good or bad. Sometimes they smell incredible, and sometimes they smell meh. There is the odd perfume that reaches into our brains, memories and maybe even our DNA, and these perfumes evoke a visceral and emotional reaction.

I experience the fragrant presence Guerlain Apres L’Ondee emotionally, as it evokes stormy weather and feelings. Many people say it makes them sad. It’s been said many times that Guerlain L’Heure Bleu is a heartbreaking scent, something evoked by summoning the sensation of the “blue hour”, a true melancholy. Perhaps that is what I love about it. And there is the CB I Hate Perfume line. Christopher Brosius (CB) created “anti perfumes”, which are more like his fragrant memories, and bottled them. His memories of childhood trips to the beach in At The Beach 1966, the books and leather of In The Library, or the lush green garden and tomato plants of his aunt in Memory Of Kindness. Do give them a try if you are even slightly intrigued by the concepts. They are wonderful.

And then there is the whole synesthesia thing, where one experiences one sense as another. I have this with Guerlain Jicky, because it smells like velvet to me. And Chanel 28 La Pausa absolutely smells purple. This is more like voluntary synesthesia, and I love closing my eyes when I smell perfume. It’s a journey, and often an interesting one.

Which brings me to my review of the Ephemera collection of perfumes. I made a conscious effort to NOT overthink these reviews. From their website:

Ephemera presents olfactory compositions based on musical resonances and reverberations. The nose behind the project is Berlin-based Geza Schoen, known for the groundbreaking Escentric Molecules series as well as various avant-garde/conceptual scents.

In the first phase of the project, three musicians – Ben Frost, Tim Hecker, and Steve Goodman (aka Kode9) – created raw sonic material which Schoen then reinterpreted to create three different scents: Noise, Drone and Bass.

These scents and sounds are now used in an installation environment, and also encapsulated as unique perfumes.The project is curated and produced by Malgorzata Plysa and Mat Schulz of Unsound.

These perfumes come with music and videos. Not like officially, in the same package, but as an installation, and, online. So I tested each perfume while sitting in a quite calm space. First, while just listening, then, watching with no sound, then, with both the sound and the videos playing. And I loved everything about the experience. I love the smells and I love the sounds and imagery. Love.

Drone by Ephemera

DRONE:

Tim Hecker’s notion of Drone does not have any direct personal narrative, drawing instead on his imagining of “a speculative day-glow incense from rituals where long-form sound induces levitation.” For Geza Schoen, that translates into aldehydes and air notes, developing to fir and juniper, with a base of patchouli, ambergris, and vetiver.

The air and aldehydes are what I first notice in Drone. It is magical and otherwordly, and somehow earthy and grounded at the same time. Think magical medieval forest, but full of silvery transparent trees. It smells clean and cooling, but lighter and more elevated than typically clean scents, with less of a laundry vibe and more of an ice cold mountain stream water vibe. There is a hint of incense, but it’s barely there, and somehow the concept of “levitation” is something that just makes sense when experiencing Drone. From the notes given to me before I got the perfumes, I thought I would like this one the best. There is no best, I’ve discovered, but I do love Drone dearly and feel calm when I wear it.

 

 

NOISE by Ephemera perfume

NOISE:

Geza Schoen created the scent representing Noise inspired by way of Ben Frost’s deepest recesses of olfactory memories: catholic church holidays, Australian bushfire, moisture, and insect drones, among other stimuli. Those ideas Schoen connected with aldehydes, ozone, black pepper, saffron, and labdanum, to name a few. 

Noise makes me think of outer space and meteorites – it is dark. I can really smell the ozone, and combined with aldehydes they are totally trippy. I get the church incense as well, and the whole of the scent gives a feeling of darkness and yet calm. Like a black hole. There is also smoke, which I was afraid would really bother me, but instead it feels like something bigger than me yet not out of control. The smoke is like the scent you get in your hair after sitting around a campfire. It’s not a lovely smell, but it is a nice one. Geza Schoen masterfully renders such a prickly idea as fire and smoke into a calming float out in space. Nicely done. I like this and was so certain I wouldn’t. If you like woodsy scents, maybe with a touch of smoke, you need to try Noise. If you like your scents weird and burnt smelling, you need to try Noise.

BASS:

For Steve Goodman (aka Kode9), the idea of Bass connects with childhood memories triggered by the sound and the accompanying scent he remembers of a broken, burning vacuum cleaner. Geza Schoen translated this to a scent which opens with woodsmoke and rum notes, developing into leather, mastic, and tea notes, and finishing with castoreum and moss, among other scents.

Bass is an odd one. I did not get broken burning vacuum cleaner until I read it, then it was surreal and right there. But only for a nano second, just long enough for my brain to register it. There is a heavy feel to this scent, as well as a darkness. The castoreum adds a human smell, almost like, um, hair. But not in bad way, more like a musky “hair of someone you know and love” way. Does that make sense? There is no out of doors description for this scent, and what I am imagining is a dark cupboard, perhaps with leather jackets and some gardening implements. There are forest-y elements here, but a dustiness I can’t quite identify. Oddly I like it. It would be a perfect scent to wear at night, with a leather jacket and jeans, with second day hair and someone you love. Can I explain why a burning broken vacuum cleaner scent is something you need? No. I will say if you like leather scents, you should try this one. Adding a note like tea, and a pine-y note like mastic makes Bass quite wearable and lovely. Trust me….

All in all I love this collection. I was so intrigued when I heard about it. Then I read about the notes and thought “Oh my god no I will never be able to wear these”. Wrong. I love them all, and interestingly, they all smell wonderful together.

EPH_Logo_by_Unsound_1024x1024

Ephemera perfumes are sold in a very limited number of specialty shops right now. They will be adding more. You can purchase them online for now, along with their amazing artwork here.

 

 

My Current Morning & Evening Skincare Routine

My Current Morning & Evening Skincare Routine

Lately, I’ve been going back to some skincare basics. My oily, aging and acne prone skin likes it when I keep my skincare simple. So a simple, gentle yet thorough cleansing routine, followed by simple yet effective-ingredient based skincare products can help restore my skin from ravages that occur when I try various new skincare routines. Ah, the things we bloggers do so you don’t have to, dear reader.

I know my skin well enough to know that it needs exfoliation on a regular basis. That is when it is happiest, and it becomes very unhappy when I don’t. So I have some old favourites, and some new additions that are making it into the rotation.

From left: Charlotte Tilbury Magic Balm, Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Pads, CeraVe Foaming Cleanser, Neostrata Glycolic Renewal Smoothing Cream 10%, Jouviance Restructiv, Odacité Ultra Effective Eye Cream, Heritage Rose Petals Rosewater

From left: Charlotte Tilbury Magic Balm, Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Pads, CeraVe Foaming Cleanser, Neostrata Glycolic Renewal Smoothing Cream 10%, Jouviance Restructiv, Odacité Ultra Effective Eye Cream, Heritage Rose Petals Rosewater

Morning:

I use tepid to warm water and gently wash my face. Right now I am using CeraVe Foaming Cleanser – a tiny bit in my hands mixed with water foams up just enough to freshen my skin. I gently pat my face dry using a clean washcloth (I buy them in bulk!) and then spritz rosewater  into my hands. Then I press it into the skin on my face and neck, as I find it moistens my skin and leaves it feeling dewy. Then, I apply my moisturizing serum (more on that in a future post). I let my serum dry, then apply NeoStrata Glycolic Renewal™ Smoothing Lotion 10%. This one is an oldie but a goodie – repackaged from when it was Neostrata Level 3 – the glycolic acid in this lotion is perfect for my skin. It exfoliates my thick skin, keeping my pores in order and reducing the look of fine lines. Getting rid of dead papery skin is the best way to improve the appearance of ageing skin. Glycolic acid use helps reduce the build up of dead skin cells in our pores as well, so skin looks smoother and glowier. However, the 10% is relatively strong, so if you have sensitive skin, you might want to try the 5% Lotion. The Neostrata Glycolic Acid Lotion formulations are best for combination to oily skin, but fear not, they have 5% and 10% Glycolic Acid in Cream formulations for normal to dry skin.

I then apply my eye serum (stay tuned!) followed by my new favourite eye cream, Odacité Ultra Effective Eye cream, which I gush about here. Then I apply my body lotion, and by the time I’m done that, my face is ready for the day. Be it just a little sunscreen, or some powder and blush.

Evening:

Time for bed/pjs/sweats means it’s time to wash mah face. Seriously, I really enjoy this ritual. Must be the beauty junkie in me. Lately, I adore my Charlotte Tilbury Multi-Miracle Glow Balm ($70) for washing the day off. This stuff is like the champagne of cold creams, and it’s balm-oil texture melts away the most stubborn of sunscreens or long wearing makeup. I like to finish that off with a hot wet wash cloth. Then, my latest obsesh, Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Pads ($16). Seriously – love. I’ve used a few glycolic toners I enjoy, but the ease of use with pre moistened pads is a terrific feature. They have a gentle amount of glycolic acid at 2.8%, but I find they make a difference in how my skin looks and feels. I give my face, neck and chest a good swipe with the pads, then gently apply my rosewater, patting it into the skin. I apply my moisturizing serum, and, when that dries, I use my Jouviance Restructiv Collagen Boost ($55). This is one of the only retinol products I have been able to use without irritation! Seriously, miraculous.

From the Jouviance site:

Exclusive Technology

Formulated with Pro-Collagen Activator (PCA), an exclusive Jouviance amino acid copper complex that boosts cell (fibroblast) energy.
Uses patented RovisomeTM encapsulation technology to deliver retinol into your skin’s lower layers. This smart bypass allows retinol’s active ingredients to be released deeper down without irritation. No more redness. No more flaking. The result? Fewer wrinkles and dark spots, and a smoother, even complexion.
Reactivates production of collagen 3 (youth collagen). Rebalances the collagen 1/collagen 3 ratio.
Promotes growth of new collagen and elastin, and prevents against future breakdown.

Developed for sensitive skin

Does not contain any parabens, sulfates, colourants, phthalates, dyes, DMAE, TEA, artificial fragrances, or occlusive agents such as silicones, paraffin, lanolin, petrolatum or mineral oil.
Developed by a dermatologist and tested under clinical control
Not tested on animals
A light texture which penetrates the skin rapidly and leaves it soft, supple, and moisturized.

After around five weeks of use, I noticed my skin was clearer, and glowing, and had a lovely texture. I feel like this is due to the combination of the daytime glycolic use and the retinol at night. So far, this routine is working for me and my skin is happy about it.

Don't be ashamed of your complexion ;)

All of these products, except for Charlotte Tilbury, are sold at drugstores in Canada. Check the websites store locators for retailers outside of Canada. Charlotte Tilbury will be available at select Holt Renfrew stores in Canada July 2015.

 

Eye Opening Skincare Magic Is Easy With Odacité + Clarisonic Opal

Eye Opening Skincare Magic Is Easy With Odacité + Clarisonic Opal

I have recently been exploring the world of luxurious green beauty. I add “luxurious” to the description because the green beauty I’ve been trying is so far away from ye olde health-food-store-backyardy natural green products of the past that they deserve a special label. The luxe products are green beauty products that I would compare to what is sold at the counters at our favourite department stores. The kind we love and that we count on for real results, and that we willingly pay for.

Odacite Ultra Protective Eye Cream

I’m working my way through some natural and/or organic skincare to find what works for me. So far I have fallen in love with the Odacité line. As readers of my blog know, I am a serious eye cream lover and user. Well, dear readers, I have finally found a product that has dethroned my beloved Shiseido Benefiance Eye Contour Cream. I started using Odacité Ultra Effective Eye Cream almost 2 months ago, and I adore it. The texture is more of a lotion than a cream, however it is rich lotion. Almost a lotion-serum-oil hybrid. It is never too greasy or oily, as my makeup stays put perfectly when I wear it. It is soothing, and keeps my eye area perfectly moisturized and keeps fine lines at bay. I use it morning and night after cleansing. If you saw the number of products I try, you’d understand how much of an endorsement “this is the best eye cream I’ve used” is. I have an office full, and no anti ageing eye cream so far has been good enough to replace my former holy grail. The added benefit is knowing that each ingredient is effective, and is not just a silicone coating with shimmer particles fooling me into believing that my eye area looks better. Here is the entire list of ingredients from the Odacité site:

Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis) (Organic)
Olive oil (Olea europaea) (Organic)
Jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis ) Oil (Organic)
Lavender (avendula angustifolia) (Organic)
Emulsifying Vegetable Wax
Palm Stearic Acid
Rooibos tea (Aspalathus linearis) extract (Organic)
Evening Primerose (Oenothers biennis) oil
Tocopherol (Vitamin E)
Pomegranate extract (Organic)
Hyaluronic Acid
Calendula officinalis Extract (Organic)
Blue Green Algae – Organic
Xanthan Gum (Polysaccharide)

Looks good, right? No wonder I love it so much.

I recently had a heavenly facial from Oresta at her amazing spa, Oresta Organic Skincare, using Odacité oils (more on this in a future post) and looked at myself in the mirror for days, admiring my plump and glowing skin. When a skilled aesthetician has her way with your face and with their magical massaging ways, they can make your skin glowy and plump. Our plump and dewy looking skin is coaxed under the caring hands of a facialist. They know that relax muscles, improve blood circulation, give your skin a toned appearance and chase away any signs of fatigue or fine lines. That plump look is visible right after a facial, and is something I aim for every time I apply my eye products.

Here is where it gets even better – if you thought that was even possible. Well, good people in search of good skin, this is where I say EUREKA! I started using Odacité Ultra Effective Eye Cream with my Clarisonic Opal [insert chorus of angels here] and now it’s like I’ve had a facial every time I apply my eye cream. Seriously.

Clarisonic Opal dalybeauty review

From the Clarisonic website:

The Clarisonic Opal Sonic Infuser is a palm-sized sonic infusion device, specially designed to help build skin’s resilience over time. By gently tapping a soft silicone tip to the skin around your eye at 200+ sonic movements per second, the Opal Sonic Infuser helps reduce under-eye puffiness and dark circles while maximizing the absorption of eye serums and wrinkle-reducing creams in a way that’s not possible with your finger alone.

I’ve always loved my Opal but admittedly it has sat unused in a drawer for white awhile. This is the first time I have used it with such an awesome product, because I had a eureka moment and made the connection to how my skin looks post-facial. Using the Opal feels amazing, like a very gentle tickle. I don’t use it on my eyelid but I do gently go over the orbital bone above my eye just because I like the way it feels. The Opal has an internal timer so you know exactly how long to spend on each eye. The ritual of using this around my eyes is as soothing as it is effective. And Odacité Ultraprotective Eye Cream is incredible and is effective with or without the Opal. The Opal just takes the beauty ritual of applying eye cream, that I do anyways, to another level of pampering. Verdict? LOVE!

Odacité skincare can be purchased on their website, at The Detox Market  (US customers go here) and in Ottawa at Oresta.

The Clarisonic Opal is sold where Clarisonics are sold. There seems to be some kind of relaunch going on with the Opal in Canada, I will pass on more information when I have it. 

Scenting the Strong & Beautiful Women of Mad Max Fury Road: Lucy B Apothecary Perfumes

Scenting the Strong & Beautiful Women of Mad Max Fury Road: Lucy B Apothecary Perfumes

Recently, I’ve been sampling some fragrances sent to me by the UK celebrity makeup artist turned perfumer, Lucy Baldock-Sacchi. Lucy spent 12 years living in Australia, where she fell in love with the natural resources, healing atmosphere, the people and unpolluted lands. She discovered for herself the emotional, spiritual and physical benefits of the Australian Bush Flowers. Lucy B. is the only perfume company in the world to have infused the natural Australian Flower Essences within their products, sharing with everyone the unique Australian energy & lifestyle.

At the time, there was a gap in the market for the perfect combination of natural, organic ingredients & colour cosmetics. Lucy consulted with the Australian Bush Flower expert, Ian White, and developed specific essences that lift the spirit and enhance confidence. I have always been a fan of the original cult favourite, Pink Frangipani, and keep a roller bottle of the oil in my purse. All of the Lucy B perfumes are soft and gentle, and easy to wear. They are well priced, with all products in the line being under $50. My new favourite is Royal Water Lotus & Vanilla Musk, a gentle airy and watery floral that smells like clean skin and paradise. Really. Tropical Gardenia is another favourite, and Royal Green Fig & Vanilla Woods is too…it’s actually hard to choose as they are all gorgeous.

From her site:

Lucy B. Cosmetics & Fragrances is unlike any other beauty range. We believe that it takes a holistic lifestyle on every level to ultimately transform each person. By including Australian Bush Flower Essences and pure aroma-therapeutic extracts in every product, we have harnessed the power and magic of the Australian botanical apothecary to bring you benefits that go way beyond beauty. The result is a range that helps transform the body, mind and soul.

Screen Shot 2015-05-23 at 09.04.35

Of course, after seeing Mad Max: Fury Road, my mind has been obsessing over all things Australian. I won’t spoil it for you, but unless you have been living under a rock, you’ve likely heard that the female characters are strong, inspirational, and badass. When I left the film I was all fired up, partially because my adrenalin levels were off the charts, but also because I was in love with the women I met on Fury Road. I’ve been wearing Lucy B’s perfumes and test driving them, and appreciating her positive messages of strength, health and confidence that the line wants to share while inspiring the wearer. Then I thought – who better to wear these magical feminine Australian scents than the women of Fury Road?  I fell in love with them all – in particular, The Five Wives. When we first meet them, they seem so precious and delicate,  one wonders how on earth they will survive when taken out of their prison. It becomes immediately clear that these women are not delicate flowers, and that like many prisoners, they were not broken, but emboldened and fortified by their oppression.

img_554fbb9458189

Perhaps one day, they help cultivate the scorched world around them, and with the wisdom of The Many Mothers and that bag of The Seed Carrier, grow and share beautiful flowers with healing essences with everyone around them. At first one might think that soft beautiful floral scents are counter-intuitive perfumes for seriously badass women to wear. But I say, these women don’t need a perfume to project their strength. They do that quite well on their own.

From left: The Dag, Toast The Knowing, Cheedo The Fragile, The Splendid Angharad, and Capable

From left: The Dag, Toast The Knowing, Cheedo The Fragile, The Splendid Angharad, and Capable

 

Abbey Lee – The Dag: At first the angelic blonde Dag appears flighty and fragile, but the reality is that she has a heightened sense of awareness as to what is going on around her. She slings around insults fearlessly, while also praying to “anyone who will listen”. She is strong while appearing ethereal. I would scent her in Royal Water Lotus & Vanilla Musk.

Top notes of lotus and watery musk a heart of rose petals within a base of warm amber & precious woods.

Top notes of lotus and watery musk a heart of rose petals within a base of warm amber & precious woods.

Zoë Kravitz – Toast The Knowing: Toast is a bit different from the other wives. Physically, she is shorter and her hair has been hacked into a shag that somehow manages to look pretty amazing. Toast loads the guns and counts the ammo, and would appear to aspire to being a warrior like Furiosa. I see her as someone who grows and thrives, despite the harshness of her world.  I would put her in Lucy B Australian Wild Jasmine.

Top notes of Pineapple & White Ginger middle notes of Wild Australian Jasmine, and bottom notes of Water Lily & Magnolia. Australian Wild Jasmine scents the skin creating a wildly sensual yet fresh Australian scent while boosting the mood through the flower essences. Simply put, it's Australia in a bottle.

Top notes of Pineapple & White Ginger middle notes of Wild Australian Jasmine, and bottom notes of Water Lily & Magnolia. Australian Wild Jasmine scents the skin creating a wildly sensual yet fresh Australian scent while boosting the mood through the flower essences. Simply put, it’s Australia in a bottle.

 

Courtney Eaton – Cheedo the Fragile: The youngest of the wives (the actress was 16 during the making of the film!), Cheedo was comfortable in the enclosed world of her prison in The Citadel, and is fearful of the outside world. She endures, however, and emerges from the battle a stronger woman. I would scent her in Lucy B Royal Egyptian Amber & Honeysuckle, with delicate top notes, but warm and enduring base notes.

Top notes of honeysuckle and peach a heart of jasmine flowers with a touch of patchouli within a warm base of amber and cashmere.

Rosie Hungtington-Whiteley – The Splendid Angharad: Splendid is visibly pregnant and is completely unafraid. She is conflicted about the child she is carrying, and is courageous, but can also be reckless.  She uses herself as a human shield without hesitation, and is determined to live a free life. She makes me think of the feminine and strong rose, so I would scent her with Lucy B Royal Peony Rose & Mandarin Musk.

Top notes of mandarin & tangerine a heart of pink peony and base of delicate camellia flowers. Royal Peony Rose is blended with confidence enhancing Australian flower essences.

Top notes of mandarin & tangerine a heart of pink peony and base of delicate camellia flowers.

Riley Keough – Capable: Early on we learn that Capable is tender and compassionate. She cares for a sick and dying character who was trying to capture her, and is aware that her lunatic captor and the leader of The Citadel world is not immortal. She is empathetic and caring. I see Capable as nurturing, and somehow the green freshness of Lucy B Royal Green Fig & Vanilla Woods would be perfect for her.

Top notes of fresh green fig & pepper with a heart & base notes of green leaf, creamy coconut & sensual vanilla.

Top notes of fresh green fig & pepper with a heart & base notes of green leaf, creamy coconut & sensual vanilla.

 

Finally, I want to scent Furiosa. I am almost overwhelmed emotionally when I think of her. She was kidnapped as a child, and suffered unspeakable atrocities at the hands of the insane leader of The Citadel. Her one dream and defining goal is to get back to The Green Place of The Many Mothers.

Furiosa Mad Max Fury Road

Her pain and vulnerability are buried deep below her badass-ness and the anger and fury that propels her. I want to scent her dream and memory of a green, lush and caring paradise, with the queen of all fragrances, gardenia. Lucy B Tropical Gardenia perhaps embodies The Green Place, and I wish that for Furiosa.

Top notes of gardenia, middle notes of orchid flowers and dewy green with bottom notes of cashmere musk.

Top notes of gardenia, middle notes of orchid flowers and dewy green with bottom notes of cashmere musk.

Lucy B perfumes are available on her site,  in many other online boutiques, and in many retail locations in Canada, the US and around the world. Check the Lucy B store locator to find the right one for you! 

Glam Gorgeous Skincare: Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream, Multi-Miracle Glow Balm & Goddess Skin Clay Mask

Glam Gorgeous Skincare: Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream, Multi-Miracle Glow Balm & Goddess Skin Clay Mask

The Charlotte Tilbury beauty line has been causing a sensation since it was launched. First, because everyone who used it looked beautiful and raved about it, and second, because it was not available in North America. Then, as with most brands, it was launched in the USA first, and Canadian beauty junkies lost their minds because we couldn’t get it here! Well, it has finally arrived* and we can all share in the glowing gorgeousness that Charlotte Tilbury brings us.

ABeautifulMind-CharlotteTilburyA

Today I’m obsessing over her skincare. Of course, I’d been reading about Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Cream in European beauty mags for awhile. As a much sought after makeup artist at couture shows around the world, one of Charlotte Tilbury’s secrets has been her Magic Cream “treat and transform” moisturizer, allegedly able to revitalize and brighten the most tired and sallow complexions. And, her Multi-Miracle Glow Balm sounded beyond fantastic – a rich, creamy and gentle cleansing balm as well, a deeply moisturizing overnight facial mask, as well as a multi-purpose SOS skincare balm that can be used anywhere, anytime. I’d read about her Goddess Skin Clay Mask (how enticing is that?) in several editor’s “best of” lists.

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream Multi Use Balm Goddess Clay Mask

All product ingredients are listed on their product pages linked above, which is a good thing. Read through if you think any might be problematic for your skin. The only issues for my skin would be some silicones, but as long as I avoid my t-zone, there is no problem. Here is what the site says about the products:

Magic Cream: The BioNymph Peptide Complex is a unique, patented anti-age ingredient that multi-tasks in the skin, fighting the ageing process on all fronts. It increases collagen & fibre levels, prevents fibre break-down, fights free radicals and stimulates cell energy to reduce the appearance of wrinkles, improve skin elasticity & generally smooth things over.
Sodium Hyaluronate forms a film of hyaluronic acid over the skin to seal in moisture, whilst extracts of Wild Pansy promote the renewal of hyaluronic acid in the skin surface to retain moisture. Skin is plumped-up and youthfully dewy.
A mix of rose hip oil, camellia oil and anti-oxidant vitamin E transforms a gray complexion into hydrated, mirror-shine skin, nourishing Vitamin A helps improves skin firmness and smoothness and energetic Vitamin C is able to promote collagen activity for more youthful skin. Damask rose water and organic aloe vera stimulate skin regeneration, fighting the signs of ageing, naturally and gracefully. Extracts of Frangipani, the symbol of eternity, form a soothing, purifying and hydrating comfort-blanket on the skin. Paraben-free. Plus a little bit of top secret magic!

I love the way the Magic Cream feels on my skin, and it adds a gorgeous glow and makes my skin look dewy. There is a soft gardenia fragrance to all Charlotte Tilbury skincare, and I adore it. It’s soft, but if you are averse to fragrance, best to test it first. It is very rich and perfectly suited to normal or dry and dehydrated skin, but could be an issue for oily skinned types like me. I have been using it sparingly, and only for day. I use it under a bit of powder and it helps me fake a good night’s sleep. I think the ideal user for this product is someone with drier skin than mine. I love it but its a bit rich for day to day.

Multi-Miracle Glow Balm: MULTI-MIRACLE GLOW is a cream-to-oil balm, enriched with vitamins and floral extracts for a fresh, dewy, baby-soft finish. Sea Buckthorn Seed Oil and Cranberry Seed Oil are highly effective anti-oxidant pure oils that moisturize the skin & stimulate micro-circulation; extracts of frangipani flower soothe and help purify dirt and makeup; rose hip and camellia oil regenerate the skin to delay the signs of ageing; whilst vitamins A, C and E smooth wrinkles and bring the skin’s complexion back to life. It’s one of my 7 wonders for your skin!

Ok – this stuff is amazing! If you are a fan of oil cleansing, you NEED to try this stuff. A tiny amount is all you need, and using Charlotte’s method, which is lots of massaging before rinsing, you will be left with clean baby soft skin. I use a little around my eyes, neck and anywhere else needing a special moisture infusion at bedtime. It feels luxurious and beautiful and is my favourite cleanser right now. I use it at the end of the day to get rid of the day’s makeup and sunscreen, and the gentle gardenia fragrance takes me away.

The stunning packaging of the Balm and Miracle Cream need to be mentioned. They are heavy and gorgeous, and just having them on my bathroom counter makes me feel super fancy. The rose gold and the cut crystal look of the lucite jars make me think of old school glamour make up tables. Love.

Goddess Skin Clay Mask:
• Spanish clay absorbs oil and draws out impurities without drying.

• Sweet Almond and Rosehip Oil nourish and delay signs of skin ageing.

• BioNymph Peptide Complex boosts collagen production and improves elasticity.

• Essential oils create a smooth, hydrating formula that never feels chalky or dry.

• Frangipani Flower Extract boasts soothing antiseptic properties and leaves skin cashmere-soft.

Officially my new favourite mask. It gives me an instant pick-up whenever I need it. I use it weekly and love my baby soft skin. It manages to make my skin feel clean without being dry and tight, and it feels like a spa day when I use it. If you are a lover of masks, you need to try this. I think it would work on all skin types, as it doesn’t irritate my oily acneic skin by being too rich, and it does not dry my skin out at all.

All in all I am in love with this line! I am hoping that Charlotte Tilbury puts out a Miracle Lotion or something lighter and silicone free. Have you tried these products? What do you think?

Gotta love that "clean makeup" glow!

Gotta love that “clean makeup” glow!

Charlotte Tilbury products are sold in select retailers and online in the US. In Canada, they will be available at select Holt Renfrew stores as of July, 2015