Sunday, April 13, 2014

Beauty Squared Round-Up - April 13, 2014

Hello lovelies! It's time for our weekly round-up of the most clickable, most interesting, most shareable beauty-related links... Let's dig in.

  • Skin finishes - luminous, matte and dewy - what is the difference, and how to get them. Spring time is the time to think skin.
  • Speaking of skin, one of the latest (and oddest-titled) makeup trends is the "toddler glow". It's a makeup application technique that gives you that extremely youthful glow that yes, toddlers have.
  • Bright eyeshadow colours for spring. Here's how to wear it so it isn't scary.
  • Photos and swatches of the Proenza Schouler-MAC collection over on the Makeup and Beauty Blog.
  • The best long-wearing lip products according to Allure, including MAC, Stila, OCC, Revlon and Wet & Wild.
  • New beauty brand alert: NUDESTIX - all crayon (chubby stick) makeup for eyes, cheeks, lips and nails (?!) - launching at Space NK stores in May.
  • Leandra Medine, aka Manrepeller, on why she doesn't wear makeup.
  • A print ad for Chanel's new foundation features a lovely model with a disturbing neck, courtesy of Photoshop.
  • National Geographic has a wonderful photo essay for their 125th anniversary issue. In it they look at what Americans will look like in 2050 - a striking and stunning mixing pot of features, skintones and hair colours. (It's a Nerve link, but it's safe for work as long as you don't explore any of the links on the page...)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil Review

Wash your face with oil? Yup, you heard me. Cleansing oils work for most skin types and are very effective in giving you clean skin without drying out your skin. Cleansing oils dissolve all the makeup, dirt, and oil that have accumulated on your skin, while protecting your skin's natural moisture balance. If rinsed properly, your skin will be left soft, smooth and clean. They're especially great to use when the air is dry such as during winter months when skin is drier and more dehydrated. 

I've used a few different cleansing oils over the years, including MAC's Cleanse Off Oil and Bobbi Brown's Soothing Cleansing Oil. This post will look at the most recent one I've tried -The Body Shop's Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil. 

This is what The Body Shop's website has to say about it's Silky Cleansing Oil:

This silky-soft cleanser will effortlessly remove make-up from the whole face quickly and effectively, leaving skin feeling clean, refreshed and clear of impurities. It’s the ultimate time-saver.

The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil comes in a 200 mL pump-bottle and costs $16 CDN. 


It has a strong fragrance but if you've used Body Shop products before you know that's a given. I wish it was subtler as I feel it's on the overpowering side, but I do like the way the product works. 

Each night, I pump the bottle a few times into my hand and then rub my hands together to emulsify it. I then apply it to my dry face, all over, massaging it into my skin. I massage it well into areas such as my eyes and lips where the stickier makeup is, such as mascara and lipstick. 

It can take some rinsing to remove entirely, but with warm water and some more rubbing with my wet hands to lift the oil, my skin rinses clean. I have noticed a few times, some oily mascara smudges under my eyes even after massaging gently and rinsing thoroughly. I suspect this is due to one of the mascaras I use (I alternate depending on the look I'm going for) and less so the cleansing oil. 

I love this cleansing oil for its ability to remove all of my makeup. I don't like to use more than one cleanser to wash my entire face (for example a face cleanser and a separate eye makeup remover). Eye makeup removers tend to be oil-based anyway.

The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleasing Oil does not irritate my skin, or over-stimulate the oiliness in my t-zone, and it effectively removes all my makeup and any oils and dirt on my skin at the end of the day. I do feel it's slightly too rich to use twice a day and save it only for my nighttime routine.

One drawback, as I mentioned before, is the heavy fragrance. If you're sensitive to heavy scents and fragrances, you probably already avoid The Body Shop, but you'll probably be better off using another cleansing oil, such as MAC's or Bobbi Brown's.

I don't have dry skin, but I have heard that using this cleansing oil has improved drastically the dry skin of users. It's certainly worth a try if you have dry skin or dry patches.

Thumbs up for the Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil from me!

Oh, and I thought I'd include this photo. I was washing my face with the Silky Cleansing Oil one night after wearing some dark eye makeup and thought it looked pretty cool, so I snapped a selfie. 

Grade: B (loses points for the heavy fragrance)

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Beauty Squared Round-Up: April 6, 2014

Hello lovelies! Happy Sunday! Is it spring where you are? SO MUCH to share with you today. Let's get started.

  • Remember how Adele looked at the 2013 Grammy Awards? MUA Nina Westbury has a step-by-step guide on how to achieve her gorgeous retro look. Click here
  • L'Oreal has hair chalk now - you can achieve unicorn hair without the commitment. Check out Tracy from Beauty Reflection's review here.
  • From the temporary to the classic, do you know if the products you are using are from a brand that's been around since 1937 or earlier? Check this list here to find out!
  • Beauty Geeks takes a look at Dior's New Vernis Gel Shine shades. Swoon!
  • New and improved Make Up For Ever's High Definition Blushes, including the shade used on Christina Hendricks on Mad Men (#210). See them here
  • Speaking of Mad Men, let's look at the beauty looks from the Season 7 (the last season - sob!) premiere red carpet - Elizabeth Moss, January Jones, Christina Hendricks, Alison Brie, and Jessica ParĂ©. 
  • Eyebrows are so important. Bad brows are just...bad. Good brows deserve a hallelujah. Want proof - look at these celebs with both bad brows and good brows
  • Five rules for contouring and highlighting in a step-by-step guide. 
  • In news that should surprise few, the gorgeous Lupita Nyong'o has been named as Lancome's spokesperson, making her the first black ambassador for the brand. The first half of that sentence makes me happy, the second half, not so much. Seriously, it's 2014, and Nyong'o is the FIRST black ambassador for Lancome?
  • A visual history of the cat eye.
  • Well this is a makeup trick I'd never heard of before - shower eyeliner. To read more, click here
  • New Zealand singer Lorde tweeted this week about a photo of herself that had been photoshopped to give her perfect skin, alongside a photo taken the same day that hadn't been retouched, and adding "Remember flaws are OK." Hear, hear, Lorde!
  • David Horne's The Art of Male Makeup looks like something I need to own. 
  • Singer Ingrid Michaelson's video for her very catchy song, Girls Chase Boys, is an homage to Robert Palmer's iconic Addicted To Love video, but with a twist. Sexy girls AND boys (in makeup)!  
  • (Also check out Ingrid's Blood Brothers video which features her being made over into John Lennon, Lady Gaga, Marilyn Monroe, David Bowie and Amy Winehouse among others.)

Monday, March 31, 2014

Tarte SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners in Rose Gold and Taupe Review, Photos and Swatches

I'd never tried Tarte makeup before so when Jill had an extra Tarte Stop & Stare SmolderEYES Liner and Lash gift set, I happily took it off her hands. The Stop & Stare SmolderEYES Liner and Lash gift set contains three Skinny SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners, two SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners, and a sample size of their Lights, Camera, Flashes Statement Mascara. Since the gift set was a limited edition set for the 2013 holiday season, I opted to review the items in it separately.

In this post I'll take a look at the two SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners - Rose Gold and Taupe. These are larger version of the Skinny SmolderEYES Liners (see my review of Onyx, Purple Garnet and Azurite here) and they come with a built-in sponge tip for smudging. 

Here's what the Tarte website has to say about the SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners: 

A versatile waterproof liner powered by Amazonian clay for soft or smoldering eyes.

Create smoldering, sexy eyes that won't budge with these waterproof liners. With this one liner, you can go from simple to sultry in an instant. Create a defined line by gliding along the upper and lower lash line or use the built-in smudger to soften. For a sultry, smoky eye, use the liner as a shadow by applying a thicker line along upper lashes and blending toward the crease. 

Both Rose Gold and Taupe are limited edition. SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners are 0.056 oz and cost $22.00 US. 

First let's take a look at Rose Gold. Rose Gold is a very hot colour in the makeup world right now. It's a very flattering, pretty shade of pink-gold and can be found in a varying range of shades. This one is almost bronzey with it's warm red-brown metallic sheen. It goes on incredibly smoothly and softly and sets fairly quickly so be quick with your blending. It's easily blended with fingers, the built-in sponge tip smudger or a brush. It can be used as a base for powder eyeshadow or worn on it's own for a soft, shimmery effect, regardless of your skin tone. 

This is the Taupe SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liner and just like the Rose Gold one, it glides onto the skin with incredible ease. It's not as metallic as Rose Gold and is a grayish brown that reads slightly purple. It's incredible soft and smudgeable, but you have to work quickly because once it sets it's not going anywhere without makeup remover or a cleansing oil. You don't have to wear a primer, even if your eyelids are oily with both of these - that's how waterproof they are.

They also both wear beautifully all day, without fading or creasing. Since the pencils are so soft, you will need to sharpen them more than other pencils to keep that rounded point. 

Stunning, shimmery, easy-to-wear shades in a beautiful, soft formula that lasts all day. Despite the fact that these two shades may not be available, I highly recommend checking out the SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners.

Grade: A+


Reviews for the other pieces in the Tarte Stop & Stare SmolderEYES Liner and Lash Set are:

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Beauty Squared Round-Up for March 30, 2014

Good morning lovelies and a happy Sunday to you! We hope it is sunny wherever you are.

  • Tracey from Beauty Reflections reviews the new Gosh Cosmetics Forever Eyes Shadow Sticks - creamy, shimmery eyeshadow in stick form!
  • Do you have green eyes? Here's an Emma Stone makeup tip that will help enhance them - aubergine eyeliner.
  • Rae from The Notice has a review of the iconic Revlon Icy Violet lipstick - originally launched in 1946.
  • Blush! There's no better way to bring light, colour and a youthful glow to your skin. Here are some picks for the best shades for your skin tone.
  • A great round-up of foundations for fair skin - as in, for skin fairer than "Siberia".
  • Fashion Magazine's Beauty Panel steps up to the $25 makeup challenge - create a look using products that in total are less than $25. Not as easy as it might sound!
  • Video tutorials!
    • MUA Charlotte Tilbury shows how to get bigger, brighter eyes. (Note: you don't need to use the specific products she uses.)
    • Pixi Beauty founder Petra Strand shows us how to do makeup for over-40 faces. (Note: there are no rules, and this isn't how you necessarily should do your makeup if you're over-40. This isn't necessarily how you shouldn't do your makeup if you're 30 or 60 either.)
    • Nic of Pixiwoo does a Victoria Beckham smoky eye tutorial.
  • Pompadour hair inspiration!
  • How to achieve a deep side-part, GIF-style.
  • Check out these amazing pin-up girl style photos featuring very sexy septuagenarians! These ladies are gorgeous and inspiring! (NSFW)

Monday, March 24, 2014

Tarte Skinny SmolderEYES Liners in Onyx, Purple Garnet and Azurite Green Review and Swatches

I'd never tried Tarte makeup before, so when Jill had an extra Tarte Stop & Stare SmolderEYES Liner and Lash gift set, I happily took it off her hands. The Stop & Stare SmolderEYES Liner and Lash gift set contains three Skinny SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners, two SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners, and a sample size of their Deluxe, Camera, Flashes Statement Mascara. Since the gift set was a limited edition set for the 2013 holiday season, I've opted to review the items in it separately. 

This post looks at the three Skinny SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners - Onyx, Purple Garnet and Azurite Green. Of the three, only Onyx isn't a limited edition shade.

What Tarte says about it's Skinny SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liners:

Create smoldering & sultry eyes or doe eyed & awakened eyes in your color of choice. Tarte offers a wide range of gorgeous Amazonian clay-infused shades to choose. Simply glide along the upper and lower lash line for smooth rich color definition. 

They retail for $25 USD each and are 0.04 oz.

Tarte Skinny SmolderEYES Liner in Onyx
All three of the SmolderEYES Liners are very soft, and apply beautifully, though if you're not careful, it's easy to apply too much since the product is so soft. Go easy with the pressure and build as needed with these. But because they're so soft, there's less tugging of the delicate skin of the eye area than with other pencil liners. 

Onyx is black. Very, very black. One of the blackest eyeliners I've encountered yet. It's fantastic for that perfect smoky liner look. It sets quickly, and lasts, even in the waterline. Even in MY waterline which doesn't take and keep liner well.

Tarte Skinny SmolderEYES Liner in Purple Garnet
Purple Garnet is a very pretty reddish-purple shade with a lot of sheen. Depending on the angle and lighting, it can look like an auburn or a warm purple. This shade would look great with brown, blue, green and hazel eyes. It's also quite soft and depending on what look you're aiming for, it can be smudged to be less metallic, or left solid for more drama. It's difficult to see in the swatches below, but Purple Garnet has some glitter in it.

Tarte SmolderEYES Liner in Azurite
Azurite Green is a beautiful emerald green shade, with less shimmer than Purple Garnet but still plenty of oomph. It has the same soft, creamy consistency as the other two and goes on and wears beautifully. 

I've included two photos showing the swatches at different angles. Both photos are taken with flash. The first photo shows the sparkle of Purple Garnet and the second photo shows the depth of colour of all three swatches.
Swatched Top to Bottom: Onyx, Purple Garnet and Azurite Green

Swatched Top to Bottom: Onyx, Purple Garnet and Azurite Green

If these three liners are any indication, Tarte's SmolderEYES Liners are excellent in both quality and performance. Of the three I've reviewed here, only Onyx is permanent. Check out the other colours available at Sephora or online at

One note is that due to the softness of the Skinny SmolderEYES Liners, they require frequent sharpening and you may go through them quickly if you wear them frequently. More quickly than other eyeliner pencils that aren't so soft.

Grade: A

To see a review of Tarte's Lights, Camera, Flashes Statement Mascara, click here

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Beauty Squared Round-Up - March 23, 2014

Hello readers! We hope that you're enjoying your weekends. Spring is definitely in the air!

  • Beauty picks from the always-radiant Cate Blanchett and some cheaper but just-as-effective versions. 
  • The Muse shares some of her picks for spring, from Laura Mercier, Bath and Body Works, Clinique and Etude House. 
  • If you like electric-pastel nail colours, take a look at OCC's Plastic Passion Nail Lacquers.
  • Do you struggle to keep your brows looking their best? Anastasia Beverly Hills may have something you need. Click through to learn more.
  • Check out this kinda-genius Etsy idea: a makeup/docking station. You can use it for watching YouTube tutorials while putting on makeup. 
  • The seven most common makeup blunders and how to prevent/fix them. 
  • Makeup can make us look older, especially if we have dry skin or aging skin. Here are some makeup tips for looking younger.
  • Dry skin? Winter-dehydrated skin? Here are some heavy-duty moisturizers for you.
  • Runway inspiration for spring's pink lips, from nude and natural to bubblegum to bold and bright.
  • An earlier Beauty Squared post looked at Illamasqua's Sculpting Powder Duo - for contouring and highlighting. You can read it here. But here is why so many find contouring and highlighting so fascinating and/or so tricky to master. Do not use these celebrities as inspiration if you're looking into trying contouring and highlighting.