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Perfectly Imperfect Beauty: April 2010

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Chanel Spring-Summer Makeup Collection Review/Haul

On Saturday I had an appointment at Chanel to have my makeup done and to get a sneak peek at the new summer makeup collection, Les Pop Up de Chanel. In Canada, the collection does not officially release until May 7th, but my connection at the store downtown Montreal let me get an early look (although no pictures were allowed, understandably. However, I do have pictures and swatches of all products I purchased at the end).
This summer collection is medium sized and, in my opinion, is a solid delivery but nothing mind blowing. The glosses are all unfortunately quite sheer with just a light wash of colour. In the packaging they look incredibly vibrant (hence the name Gloss Fluo), but the colour is very deceiving. I personally could not validate spending $30+ on such sheer glosses, even if the texture is quite lovely.

The three nail polishes are vibrant and fresh, but dupable. The one that I can see selling out the quickest is Nouvelle Vague, a turquoise-green that looks very creamy. The other two are both pink and not terribly unique compared to the new releases from other cheaper ranges (ex Essie and OPI).

The products that I found the most tempting were the two Rouges Allures, Super (Rose) and Genial (coral). Obviously coral is the hottest colour of the season and I am contemplating going back for Genial but I am fearing buyers remorse considering I own 11 (yes, 11) of the Rouge Cocos. We shall see if I can resist the pull of this lovely, wearable, and incredibly smooth colour (hmmm, that description may have just sealed my purchasing fate...)

The one product I did pick up from the collection was a Soleil Tan de Chanel bronzer compact. There are two new limited edition colours being added to this permanent product. I chose #62 as it was the most complimentary to my fair skin tone. I knew before viewing the collection that I was going to pick up a bronzer since I have approximately three days left in my MAC Golden Bronzer.
The remaining products that I purchased were released with Les Impressions de Chanel Sping 2010 Collection:

1) Ombre D'Eau in Torrent, an olive khaki coloured liquid shadow. Be sure to shake well before applying. This product blends out very well either with a brush or our fingertips and can be used alone for a smokey eye or as a base for powder shadows. I consider this to be liquid version of MAC's Sumptuous Olive.

2) Les 4 Ombres in Kaska Beige. This quad of shadows can achieve both a wearable and classic day look or a dramatic and smokey evening look. Incredibly versatile, high quality, finely milled and smooth pigments.
**the lightest shade is the farthest on the left but is not very visible in this photo as it is a matte flesh colour, perfect for evening out patchy skin pigmentation. The colour below the quad swatches is the Ombre D'Eau listed above.**

3) Powder Blush in Imprevu, a rosy bronze. This blush is VERY pigmented and should be applied using a light hand. It gives a natural bronzed flush to the skin and is flattering on fair-medium skin tones.

4) Some samples of the Chanel Chance parfum.
**Disclaimer: I received an insider discount on these products for attending the event.**


Sunday, April 25, 2010

I Pulled A Pretty Woman...And The Sales Woman Deserved It

This is one of the most iconic moments in chick flick history:

Today I had my very own Pretty Woman moment (albeit not as extreme).

I was enjoying a wonderful afternoon at Chanel housed at The Bay downtown Montreal. I had an appointment with the national makeup artist representative who was visiting the location to do a weekend of makeovers and pre-release viewing for the new Chanel Summer 2010 collection, Les Pop-Up de Chanel. I thoroughly enjoyed myself as I am quite friendly with a few of the sales representatives and my makeup application was flawless and informative. They had run out of smaller bags so I was given a medium sized bag for my little goodies. Little did I know that this bag would help me garner revenge on a rude sales associate less than an hour later.

I have been on the the hunt for the perfect dress to wear to  my university convocation ceremony that is just over a month away (even though I graduated December 2009, all the ceremonies are in June). The Bay was having a 30-40% off sale on designer dresses so I scurried my Chanel laden self up to women's wear and began to prowl through the selections. I quickly amassed an armload of 8+ dresses when a mature aged sales associate asked if she could start a room for me. I gratefully relinquished my load and continued browsing while she squirreled my selections away in one of her rooms (the sales associates work on commission in this section and are assigned dressing rooms).

As I continued to browse I found four more dresses to add to my selections when the sales associate returned. She looked at me from the top of my head to the tips of my toes and snidely asked "You don't really need all those dresses, do you?" Now first I should clarify that her first language was French and that we had been swtiching back and forth between English and French during our short interaction up to this point. I was ready to chalk up this odd question to a translation faux pas but I was quickly proven wrong.

She continued, "You know, if you pull all these dresses and don't really need them, we have to put them all away." Well that zipped my spine up like a steel rod and I immediately responded by saying, "In fact, I am in need of several dresses so a selection of styles and colours is exactly what I need." The minute she turned her back and sashayed away I grabbed a handful of random dresses in an assortment of sizes that I knew would NEVER fit just to be spiteful. I know! I know! It was childish and petty, but this woman was being a downer to my Chanel high. But the was not the end. Oh Lawdy no! It was just the beginning.

With my newest additions (and yes, some revenge pieces) I was escorted to my dressing room and informed that she had divided the dresses by ease of dressing: slip on dresses vs zip-up dresses. As is customary, she informed me that if I required assistance with a zipper, just to call her. Already I was feeling guilty for my childish actions of pulling the other dresses since she had so graciously prepared my room. My guilt would be short-lived.

Approximately two minutes later she returned asking if I needed help zipping or if she could take anything away. "Um, I am just trying out the first dress. I am alright for now, thank you" I replied. I heard her scurry away and continued with my task. Five minutes later-SUCCESS! I found a Jones New York dress that I absolutely fell in love with and that was very flattering on my full-bodied figure. I was able to zip-up myself but I needed help unzipping. I opened the door just as the sales associate was bracing to knock. Before I could even open my mouth she asked "Can I have the dresses you don't want?"


I handed over the few dresses I had the chance to try in the short time frame that I wasn't happy with and asked her if she could, please, unzip the dress half way for me. Her response? "Well, I did come by a few minutes ago to offer my assistance, but you didn't want it." I gaped at her for a full 30 seconds before responding, "I had no trouble zipping the dress up but I could use a hand now unless you want me to stay in  the dress." That snapped her into action as she brusquely unzipped me and went on her merry way. Needless to say, this woman was getting my blood pressure boiling but I decided to stay focused.

Like clockwork she knocked on my door five minutes later (which brings my grand total to 15minutes and 6 dresses tried) and said that she had pulled some dresses for me. I said thank you and one moment because I was not yet decent (read: I was standing in my skivies with a dress in my hand). Apparently that was not an adequate response because she decides to UNLOCK THE BLASTED DOOR! Well call me greased lightening, but I was on that door faster than bees on honey, just managing to stop her from flinging it open. She passed me the dresses through the small opening that I was allowing with my foot and then huffed away. I was starting to see a cyclical pattern so I started to move faster in fear that she would catch me au natural again.

Five minutes later and 4 dresses left to go, the predictable knocking at the door arrived. This was how our conversation went:

Sales Associate: "How much longer will you be?"
Me: "I have four more dresses to try..."
Sales Associate: "Ok, so, two more minutes?"
Me: "Probably more because I have four more dresses to try."
Sales Associate: "Well, I have another client I want to put in this room, so if you could please hurry."
Me: Silence. Anger. Flame spitting.

Glaring at the door, I jerked my clothes back on, grabbed the two dresses I liked and stalked out the door. I didn't bother trying the other four dresses because I refused to be subjected to such rude service for one minute longer. I walked past the sales associate without acknowledging her and went directly to the cash register where I asked the girl there to process my purchases. Well, Ms High-and-Mighty came running and said that I was her client and she would process the sale (read: hands off my commission!).

Now comes the part that I am a little proud of and a little ashamed of. I reached down at my feet where I had placed my Chanel bag that had thus far not been noticed. I purposefully placed it on the counter in the direct line of vision of the sales associate. Her eyes remained glued to that bag for several seconds before she became flushed and manifested a new personality.

Sales associate: "Well, my dear, is there anything else I can help you with? Shoes perhaps?"
Me: "That won't be necessary."
Sales Associate: "Only two dresses? You can always get that other one you were looking at and then bring it back if it doesn't work out."
Me: "I don't need three dresses. I am happy with my choices." Listen darlin', I am not going to help you pass your sales quota for the day. Just process my sale so I can get out of here.
Sales Associate: "Do you have any other plans for this evening?"
Me: "No. May I have my receipt please?"
Sales Associate: "Oh yes, of course. Have a wonderful day."
Me: "Mm-hmm."

That was probably the rudest I have ever been in my life, but I was ticked off. Looking back I wish I had been a bigger person and not acted so petty. I can not figure out why she was so rude to me. Not that it should matter, but I was dressed quite nicely for my Chanel appointment, I was a typical Canadian (please, thank you), I didn't dawdle, and I wasn't demanding.

On a brighter note, I found two dresses at a lovely discount.


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Get the Angelina Jolie least for your nails

**excuse my sloppy nail polish application**
Sephora by OPI's "I'm With Brad" is a vampy, flirty, and chic colour that (considering the name) seems to emulate the persona of Angelina Jolie. I honestly never would have chosen this colour for myself, but it came in a free trio that I received after redeeming my Sephora Beauty Insider points. I figured that I would apply it tonight so that if I did not like it, I would not have to commit to wearing it the whole day (yes, I am a nail polish commitment-phobe).
Suprisingly, I love it! The base of this colour is a dark brownish-black maroon that has a scarlet red duo chrome when it hits the light. This saves the colour from crossing the line into gothic and keeps it very contemporary. I personally think that this colour is more suited for a night out and is a little too dramtic for day wear, but that's just me.
The application of this polish was a dream after two coats. The first coat left my nails a streaky, slightly sheer brown, but the second coat turned the shade completely opaque and streak free. I did not even bother with a top coat because the finish was so smooth and fast drying. It has the usual OPI easy to use brush that picks up just the right amount of product and smooths the pollish smoothly over nails.

Grade: A-


Monday, April 19, 2010

Spring Colours Aren't Only for Makeup and Clothes

Who can forget when the ever talented and stunningly beautiful Rachel McAdams dyed part of her golden locks a bubble gum pink in 2007?

She received mixed reviews over this gutsy experiment but it appears that Ms McAdams was ahead of a trend that is now taking root (pun completently intended) for the Spring 2010 season.

Wella Professionals brings you the latest in hair color trends: dip-dyed hues with natural color. This hair trend, first featured at New York Fashion Week (for designers such as Proenza Schouler and Zac Posen), has a definite bohemian esthetique, which is why it is no suprise that it has caught the eye of celebrities such as Ashley Olsen, Kelly Osbourne, and Drew Barrymore. It is a fun take on street chic that can be worn be either the tough as nails rocker, fashion maven, or whimsical romantic.
How is this look achieved? Wella master colorist Eva Scrivo, who created coloured extensions for the Cynthia Rowley Fall '10 show, used Koleston Perfect Special Mix colours to achieve the adventurous look of natural colours highlighted with dip-dyed tones.
Whether you choose to dye your locks or clip in coloured extensions, this trend will be sure to turn heads and have tongues wagging. The question is what will they be saying? Time for you to sound-off: Is this another Rachel McAdams-esque controversial look or a definite must for spring trend enthusiasts?


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Maybelline EyeStudio Look #3: Aquamarine Inspired by Maybelline

**Click pictures to enlarge and better see colour placement**

This look was inspired by the Maybelline EyeStudio Campaign images:


1) From the #20 Sapphire Siren palette, with a flat shader brush apply the turquoise call over the lid and up to the crease. Apppy that same colour to the innner corner of your lower lashline.

2) From the #20 Sapphire Siren palette, with a flat shader brush apply the royal blue shade to the outer 1/3 of the eye, from the lashline to the crease. Apply that same colour to the outer-half of your lower lashline.

3) With a clean blending brush, using small circular motions blend the colours in your crease to give a smooth diffusion of colour. Slowly move the brush towards your browbone, drawing the colour upwards.

4) From the #20 Sapphire Siren Palette, with a fluffy brush take the darkest shade and apply it to the outer corner  of your crease and slowly blend inwards.

5) From the #20 Sapphire Siren Palette, with a fluffy brush apply the white shade from the browbone to the arch of your brow and blend it into the darker shades.

6) Apply EyeStudio liner in blackest black, flicking it out slightly at the outer corner.

7) Apply XXL Extensions primer and mascara


1) Apply a coral-pink blush to your cheeks.

2) From the #80 Pink Persuasion palette, apply the pink shade as a cheek highlight.


1) From the #80 Pink Persuassion Palette, lightly dab the pink shade over your lips with your ring finger.

2) From the #80 Pink Persuasion palette, apply the white shade to the cupid's bow as a highlight



Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Maybelline EyeStudio Look #2: Work Day Neutrals

**Click pictures to enlarge and better see colour placement**

What do you do when you have 5 minutes to throw together a quick, easy, and lovely work look before you fly out the door using the minimal amount of products?


1) Using the Bronze Blowout Mineral Duo, apply the marbelized colour all over your lid up to the browbone.

2) Using the same duo, apply the solid colour to the outer 1/3 of your lid and work it up into your crease, blending as you go.

3) Apply a thin line of Eye Studio liner in brown (if you have 5mins you don't have time to worry about your eyeliner matching so a thin line is the way to go). **I photographed the wrong liner above. The one in the picture is actually charcoal**

4) Apply both the primer and mascara side of XXL Volume Mascara to make sure it lasts all day through work's sweat and tears.



Maybelline EyeStudio Look #1: Spring Reflections

**click to enlarge pictures and see colour placement**
Spring is here so bring out the pastels! I love pairing colours together that are on opposite sides of the colour wheel so that they really compliment each other and stand out. Today I opted for very spring colours: pale lavendar and mint green. I used quite a sheer application to make it wearable for the office, but you can certainly play up the colours by applying the shadows wet. Do be advised that these products have a lot of fall-out so applying foundation after eye makeup is advised (what I should have done). 

See instructions and product list below:



1) Using the #10 Lavendar Mineral Eyeshadow duo, apply the marbelized side over your lid up to the crease using a shader brush.

2) Using the solid lavendar side of the #10 Lavendar Mineral Eyeshadow Duo, apply the colour into your crease starting on the outer corner of the eye and working half-way in along your crease.

3) Using the #30 Purple Icon Palette, apply the darkest purple on the very outer edge of your crease and blend it into the lavendar with back and forth motions. Try and keep this colour just to the outer 1/3 of your crease to keep this a light, daytime look.

4) Still using the #30 Purplie Icon Palette, apply the white shimmer colour to your browbone as a highlight, and in the inner corner of the eye.

5) Using the green colour from the #40 Green with Envy palette, apply it with a pencil brush to your lower lashline giving the colour a drop-down effect.

6) Use the Eyestudion Liner in Eggplant and the accompanying brush to draw a very thin line along your lashline line, barely flicking it out into a wing.

7) Apply both the primer and mascara from the XXL Pro Curl tube.


1) Using the #30 Purple Icon Palette, take the white shimmer colour with a fluffy brush and apply it lightly to your cheekbones as a highlight.

2) Using the marbelized side of the #40 Mocha Mineral Eye Duo, apply it to the apples of your cheek as a sheer pink blush


No Maybe's About it-It's A Case Full of Maybelline EyeStudio


Look what came in the mail today!!!

About a month ago, I was contacted by a word of mouth marketing company called Matchstick. They are based here in Canada and are working with Maybelline New York to promote the new Maybelline Eye Studio Collection. My blog was chosen to participate in the Maybelline Dare To Inspire Campaign/Competition. Consequently I was sent the whole Eye Studio Line to use in creating both wearable and fashion inspired looks.

Over the next month I will be posting picture (and possibly video if I can figure out the proper lighting) tutorials using the Maybelline line. There will be easy to follow, step-by-step instructions so that you can recreate the looks for yourself! If you have a special request for a colour combination or inspired look, please feel free to email me and I will be more than happy to put something together for you.

How will this benefit you? You can win your very own case full of the WHOLE Maybelline Eye Studio Collection simply by voting. If you have a Facebook account all you have to do is become a fan of the Maybelline New York-Canada page (!/maybellinenewyork?v=app_400454985567&ref=ts) and vote once daily on your favourite look/tutorial. You can vote ONLY ONCE A DAY, so the more you vote, the more you increase your chance of winning. You have until May 23rd to vote so that gives you 1.5 months to get in as many votes as possible. There are so many talented women taking a part in this competition so vote for whichever look speaks to you the most.

Here is what you can win:


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Urban Decay has a primer on all three bases...HOME RUN!!

Yes, the baseball analogy was completely corny with the "three bases" (Get it? Three eyeshadows bases? huh? huh? Any takers?...)

HOWEVER, tacky jokes aside, I am thrilled with the newest addition to the Urban Decay trinity of eyeshadow primers-Primer Potion in Eden. Eden is a matte cream colour that is extremely rich in colour, very blendable, and holds the same magic powers as its two predecessors...My lord, I am just full of cliche statements today aren't I? Sheesh.

Some other eyeshadow primers make it difficult to blend your shadows overtop and sometimes take away from the true colour pigmentation. That is not the case with these primer potions. If anything they increase the blendibility of the shadows because they are not being affected by the natural oils or inconsistent texture of the eyelid, the very things they combat. These primers can be worn alone to even out the skin tone of the lid and add a slight shimmer, or used to layer your products and extend their wear time.

The bottles are cute, quirky and relate directly back to the name (don't you hate when a company gives a product a name that isn't reflected in the packaging?) The applicator is slighly bent so that you can dig out the products from all the crevices of the bottle. Even then, in the past I have had to saw open my bottles to get out the last few precious drops.

From left to right: (Original, Sin, Eden) Applied directly from applicator without blending

Lightly blended to show how you could wear them alone without shadow