Saturday, 29 September 2012

REVIEW: boscia Luminizing Black Mask

boscia Luminizing Black Mask
The boscia Luminizing Black Mask ($41.00) is a bit of a cult classic, and I decided I needed to try it out and see if it was worth all the hype. I think it is very expensive for a facial mask, more than I would usually spend.
Boscia says this innovative peel-off mask helps boost skin clarity and minimize pores while absorbing excess oil and removing dirt and impurities. It has awesome ingredients like jojoba leaf, vitamin C and Willowherb.

First off, application of this mask is a bit tricky and definitely takes some practice. If you put this mask on too thick, it won't set properly. You need to keep the mask on for 20-30 minutes to ensure it fully dries, but if after 30 minutes of application it is still not fully dried, you're most likely applying it much too thickly. I found that it was best to layer it on so it was fully opaque on the face, but not overly thick. Avoid all hair!! Don't put this on your eyebrows, it'll be a pain in the butt to remove. This mask might not pull off in one full jelly-like piece. For me, it tore off in a few large pieces each time I used it, which worked just fine for me.
boscia Luminizing Black Mask

boscia Luminizing Black Mask
I found the results of this mask to be mediocre. I much prefer the proactiv refining mask for clarifying my skin. I think this mask is kind of fun because of its peel-off nature, but that also makes it a bit tricky to use. When I removed the mask, it certainly left my skin feeling soft, but so do all facial masks I use. There was nothing about this mask that made it worth the $41.00 to me. I will continue to use my current tube until it is all gone, but I wouldn't recommend this mask based on the price tag. I am sure others have found it to be much more enjoyable since it is such a well known product, but it was a miss for me. I will stick to maskeraide, LUSH fresh face masks and proactiv's refining mask :)

Have you tried the boscia Luminizing Black Mask? What do you think?

LUSH Christmas is here! North America and UK!

Who else is a sucker for holiday collections? I wait all year long for LUSH Christmas! I am beyond pleased to tell you that LUSH Canada/USA launched part of their Christmas line recently. The UK is always a step ahead and their Christmas collection has been available for about a week now.

There are returning favourites like Snow Fairy shower gel, Snow Cake soap and Buche de Noel facial cleanser, as well as some new inventions such as Let The Good Times roll (a corn based cleanser!), Sandy Santa, a fun body scrub, and North Pole soap which smells like chocolate and peppermint (yummy!). There are also some old loves available this year, such as the much coveted Twilight shower gel.

North Pole soap
Buche de Noel facial cleanser

Twilight shower gel

Snowcake soap

LUSH NA will be announcing their Halloween collection soon, but you can check some of the Halloween items out on the UK site.

What holiday collections are you most looking forward to?

Monday, 17 September 2012

REVIEW: Maskeraide Sheet Masks!

Face masks are always a favourite beauty luxury in my book. I love the fresh face masks at LUSH, and I recently purchased the luminizing black mask from boscia. I love using facial masks that have natural ingredients, because I figure if you're going to slather something onto your skin in hopes it'll be absorbed, natural ingredients are the best way to go. 

I recently tried out some sheet masks from the Canadian company Maskeraide. Sheet masks are a type of facial mask I was less familiar with. Rather than applying a thick paste to your face, sheet masks are a special type of mask made from thin fiber that is cut out to contour the face. The fiber mask is soaked in a highly concentrated serum infused with vitamins and nutrients. Sheet masks tote a variety of benefits, such as the fact that they provide superior deep hydration, act as an incubator and have a functional, easy to use design. 

The sheet masks from Maskeraide come drenched in a highly concentrated Argan Oil based serum that is also packed with vitamins and nutrients to solve a variety of skin concerns. The masks are free of parabens, harsh dyes and pigments, mineral oils, artificial fragrances, glycerins and benzophenone. These masks are vegan, and appropriate for all skin types! 
There are six different masks available- one to suit every skin need! The packaging is gorgeous on these masks- they're beautiful to look at and fun to use!
Maskeraide Masks: Pre Party Prep, Beauty Restore, Weather Warrior

Maskeraide Masks: I Don't Wanna Grow Up, Detox Diva, All Nighter
Each mask has specific ingredients included to combat certain skin concerns. I recently used the WEATHER WARRIOR ($4.99 each) mask because my skin was feeling unusually dry. I think this is because of a Benzoyl Peroxide spot treatment I have been using from Kellett that is apparently too harsh for my skin!
Weather Warrior mask has aloe vera, green tea, witch hazel and argan oil to soothe, calm and heal the skin.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

TOPBOX - September 2012

Today when I arrived home from classes, my Topbox was waiting for me in the mailbox! I just love the small size of Topbox- the fact that it fits in the mailbox makes it very convenient as you never have to run to the post office to collect it! 
For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, Topbox is one of Canada's subscription beauty box programs. For only $10 a month (plus tax) you get a lovely box filled with premium cosmetic samples delivered right to your door. You can usually expect four samples per month, although sometimes you get more! What I really love about Topbox is that they know who they are as a brand. They consistently provide high-end or luxury branded samples, and you can almost always expect a full-sized product in your box!

In my September Topbox I received:
Benefit They're Real! Mascara (3.0 g) (full size retails for $29.00/8.5g)
REDKEN Color Extend Shampoo and Conditioner (two sample packets of each at 10ml a piece) (full size shampoo retails for $15.00/300ml; full size conditioner retails for $17.00/250ml)
M.Asam Perfect Teint Primer (5ml) (full size retails for $42.00/50ml)
Vasanti BrightenUp! Enzymatic Face Rejuvenator (20g) (full size retails for $34.00/120ml)

**I will note that Topbox changed their product cards this month! They now include information on where you can buy the full-size version of each sample, which is great!

September 2012 Topbox

M.Asam Primer and Benefit They're Real! mascara

REDKEN shampoo and conditioner samples, Vasanti Face Rejuvenator
This may be the first Topbox I've received in a while where I didn't get a full-sized sample item. Of course, that isn't expected but it is always welcome!
I was very excited for the trial size benefit mascara- I love benefit as a brand and their mascaras are awesome! I don't have any They're Real! in my stash at the moment so this was very welcome. I would say this was the stand-out sample for me in September's Topbox. The M.Asam primer sample looks very thick- much thicker than other primers I use. I love primers by CoverFX personally. I tried the M.Asam primer out quickly and it left my skin feeling very greasy. It is also scented, which is a big negative for me as it is a mature scent that I don't particularly enjoy. 
The REDKEN samples were nothing special- at least Topbox gave us two of each so we can try them out more than once to see if we enjoy the product. Sadly, I don't have colour treated hair so the benefits this shampoo and conditioner tote will be lost on me. Lastly, the Vasanti face rejuvenator sounds interesting. It is supposed to improve the texture of the skin with papaya enzymes, microcrystals and aloe vera. To use it, you rub it into your face like you would a cleanser, then wash away. 
This Topbox had a wide variety of cosmetics, skincare and hair care items, which is nice. Overall I am happy with Septembers box, although it cannot compare to some of the other Topboxes I've received in the past.
I noticed on the Facebook page that Topbox recently took on a lot of new subscribers for October- I am anxiously awaiting the October box to see if the quality of the samples changes at all due to this!!

Topbox is currently on a waiting list, so if you are at all interested in getting a subscription you should go to their website and get on the wait list today! If you want to get a beauty box subscription NOW and not wait for a Topbox, I strongly recommend Glossybox- I have some reviews of their boxes, check it out here.

You can read about my May Topbox here. June Topbox here, July Topbox here, August Topbox here

Monday, 10 September 2012

Get Ready for Fall 2012!

Fall is in the air! I woke up this morning to go to school, and it was only 6 degrees outside! Brrr! It had me thinking that I might like to cozy back up under the blankets inside :)
I thought I'd highlight a few products that will help you embrace the season and get you ready for the wonderful season of autumn!

Pumpkin soap! Rocky Mountain Soap Company is a favourite of mine, and they have two lovely soaps out for fall: Spicy Pumpkin Pie soap (umm, yum?!) and Pumpkin soap! Lathering up in the shower with delicious pumpkin soap will definitely get you in the mood for autumn!

Rocky Mountain Soap Company's Pumpkin Soap! 
Fall polish! Essie got it right with their Fall 2012 collection- neutrals and dark hues are perfect for fall and they're a fun contrast from the bright and vibrant colours of spring and summer!
Essie's Fall 2012 Collection
Treat yourself to an indulgent soak in the tub! LUSH has a wide assortment of bath bombs, melts and bubble bars and I think Phoenix Rising is the perfect pick for fall! This bath bomb has a cinnamon stick in the center, and smells like spicy apples and cinnamon! Yummy :)
LUSH Phoenix Rising Bath Bomb!
With the weather getting dryer, you will have to switch up your routine to ensure your skin and lips stay moisturized! A favourite hand lotion of mine is by Cake Beauty- you pick the scent, they're all delicious! However, the basic formula that all their hand creams are made with is absolutely perfect- it is rich and moisturizing without being greasy or leaving residue!
Cake Beauty's fabulous hand lotions! 

Oh and speaking of moisturizing- make sure you have your favourite lip balms and scrubs ready for action! I love LUSH's lip scrubs and balms, but Rocky Mountain Soap Company and EOS also make pretty fabulous all-natural lip care products :)

What are your fall faves?

Boscia Haul!

I recently did a little boscia haul and I thought I'd share with you three products that I am very excited to try out!
Firstly, their infamous Luminizing Black Mask ($41.00)! This mineral-rich peel-off mask is meant to detoxify, purify and brighten the skin. It is made with clay to deep-cleanse and draw out dirt and oil. It also has antioxidants to shrink pores, firm skin and reduce inflammation. I have heard that this mask is great for the skin and that it is also really fun to apply and remove- expect a review!
Secondly, I got their Revitalizing Black Hydration Gel ($46.00), which I thought sounded really cool! This gel takes the place of your daily moisturizer- it provides ultralight hydration while refining skin texture, brightening the skin and minimizing pores. It has charcoal in it to absorb oil. It also has awesome glycolic acid to clarify and smooth the skin. I think this product sounds really different and I am excited to try it out!
Lastly, in my never ending search for acne-fighting miracle workers, I got boscia's Willow Bark Breakout Treatment ($30.00). This is a botanically-based spot treatment for acne blemishes. Willow bark helps provide relief from breakouts as an anti-irritant to calm inflammation. It also has jojoba leaf and vitamins C and E to reduce redness, control oil and maintain a clear complexion!
In general, I think bosica is an awesome company. They are all about keeping it natural, and as such all their products have expiry dates, just like LUSH!

I also received 6 of their pore purifying black strips! I am excited to try these and compare them to Biore's pore strips. If you purchase anything from their website right now, you get 6 of these pore strips FREE, which is very cool!

Are you familiar with boscia? What do you think of the brand?

Friday, 7 September 2012

GLOSSYBOX - August 2012

This post is coming up a little late because I've been a very busy bee lately! Going to school full time and working is a LOT of work! I received my August Glossybox on the last day of the month, just as I did in July. 
For those of you who are new to beauty boxes, Glossybox is one of Canada's subscription beauty boxes. Alongside Glymm, Julep, Luxe and Topbox, Glossybox charges a monthly fee and sends out packages of deluxe beauty samples, such as lotions, makeup, nail care or skin care items right to your door step. Glossybox comes in a gorgeous, sturdy pale pink box that is completely re-usable for giving gifts or personal storage. Glossybox charges $15.00/month for their service- more than Glymm and Topbox. However, they promise to send "5 luxury product samples from high-end brands " in every box.
August 2012 Glossybox
In my August Glossybox I received:
Sebastian Potion 9 Lite (50ml) (full size retails for $20.95/150ml)
Biore Makeup Removing Towelettes (10 sheets) (retails for $3.99)
Kryolan Lipstick (no price listed, made for Glossybox)
Nee Lipgloss (full size) (retails for $19.99/6ml)
Befine Fine Food Skincare (sample sizes of five different treatments)
+ bonus Ahava Deadsea Water Mineral Lotion (40 ml)
+ a bonus giftcard for Trend Trunk and one Elastoplast SOS blister band-aid
Elastoplast blister bandaid, Befine skincare sample box
Nee lipgloss, AHAVA lotion, Glossybox lipstick
Sebastian hair mist, Biore makeup removing towelettes
The August Glossybox was jam packed with stuff. I was very happy to receive the Biore facial wipes because I am a huge fan of facial wipes- I haven't tried Biore's yet so I look forward to comparing theirs to Simples, which are my favourite at the moment. The Sebastian Potion 9 Lite is supposed to condition, restore and enhance your hair. It smells nice. We've gotten a lot of Sebastian products from Glossybox and I've enjoyed each and every product from this brand thus far.
I received another AHAVA deadsea mineral lotion in this box, which we had already received in a past box. It was a thank-you from Glossybox for being a member for 6 months. This lotion is quite florally and not my favourite scent, but it is very thick and great quality. The Glossybox lipstick I received was made in Germany, and is named 'Glossy Pink'. It is interesting, but it isn't something that you could go out and buy another one of it you like it since it was made exclusively for Glossybox. The NEE lipgloss is very exciting and from a brand I am unfamiliar with. It is made in Italy. The actual packaging for the gloss looks like a mascara container which is different!
I would say the thing that excited me the most in this box was the samples I received from Befine Food skincare! I got five little sample packets- one each of their night cream, pore refining scrub, exfoliating cleanser, gentle cleanser and warming clay mask. I really liked the packaging and it seemed like this was a really natural company, but then I read the ingredients list on the back of the packages and they're all full of chemicals. Very deceptive marketing, since the front of the package says 'Natural, Paraben Free, Vegetarian, Allergen Free Fragrance'.
The little bonus giftcard for Trend Trunk is garbage to me, but the little blister bandaid will surely be enjoyed!
Overall, this was a nice box and I enjoyed it-- what did you think?


If you wish to sign up for August's GLOSSYBOX, click here. A monthly subscription is $15.00 after taxes and shipping.
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