Wednesday, January 4, 2017

2016 Makeup + Skincare Favourites!

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a great holiday and not too hung over from this past weekend?

I can't believe it's already 2017! Do you guys have your resolutions set up? I don't usually have any because I always break them within the first week anyway. But I'm going to *try*, key word 'try' again this year. What about you guys?

I'll be doing a year end review of my favourite products of 2016. There were a few I found literally during the last 2 months of 2016. There's quite a lot of products so I've broken them down between skincare and makeup.

2016 was when my skincare routine really expanded. I found a lot of great products I want to share with you guys.

Skincare - Face


Skinfood Black Sugar Mask - Read my full review here

The Face Shop Real Clay Pack
I'm not usually a fan of wash off masks because they're so tedious. They're messy if you don't have a brush and take forever to rinse off. Luckily, I have a brush that I use to apply the product. Basically after first use, I was in love. I actually tried removing with a face towel and it does wonders. I don't know why I never used one before. Masks come off more easily and it helps scrub off any left over dead skin. My skin feels AMAZING after. I've basically been using this once a week and even ignored my Skinfood Black Sugar mask! It's a shame that it's sold out online. I'm hoping it comes back in stock soon. I will definitely repurchase once I'm done.

Regular price is $25 CAD but it's on sale for $17.50 CAD? Hoping this isn't going to be discontinued.

Papa recipe
Papa recipe has become the HG mask for so many people. I'm no different. Of all the masks I've tried this past year, the honey mask is my favourite. It's recommended for those with dry skin because it's very hydrating. But it also helps the skin be more radiant and provide a lot of nutrients as well. Not to mention, it smells amazing.
My skin doesn't dry tacky or feel sticky even though one of the main ingredients is honey. Papa recipe claims to use organic ingredients. Actually, reading the ingredients list, honey extract is #4. I've mentioned on instagram before, but apparently if you licked it, it'll taste like honey. I've tried this. For... science. I mean a hint of honey but it still mainly tastes like chemicals.

Either way, I still love the mask. I'm really interested in trying more from Papa Recipe.


Left to right:Secret Key Essence, COSRX cream, C20 serum, It's Skin multi balm

Secret Key First Treatment Essence - full review here

COSRX BHA Blackhead Power Cream
Since I use the BHA Blackhead Power Liquid Toner in the night routine, I don't use the cream daily. I use it once a week or when my skin is feeling rough. By morning, I notice a huge change in how smooth my skin feels. The cream is pretty thick and as it claims, very moisturizing. It also smells like tea tree. I checked out the ingredients list and it's the last one listed. So I like using it when I have acne. Especially when the acne has popped and healing, to help get rid of any dead skin.

I wish the packaging was better. I would have preferred a regular plastic squeeze tube vs tubes made out of tin. You basically have to buy a particular product that squeezes the cream out. I've tried rolling it free hand and I usually also end up busting the tin and cream oozes out.

Original Pure Vitamin C20 Serum 
I've been using this for the past couple of months and I've noticed a huge difference in my skin. It looks a lot brighter. Though it claims to tighten pores, it's difficult to say since I'm using a few different products for pore tightening. So it could be any one of them. It is moisturizing as well, but definitely have to work fast with this serum. It dries quickly and it leaves the skin feeling sticky. But since it's a serum and I apply a cream after, it doesn't bother me too much.

It's supposed to help with pigmentation, which I have found that my skin does look better since I started using this C20 serum.

It's Skin Pure Moisture Multi Eye Balm
I had purchased this last year, but didn't bust it out to use until December. I went on a short vacation last month. I wanted to travel light and I remember the It's Skin sales associate mentioning I could use this all over my face. The balm is great. It basically melts once it touches my face and is absorbed immediately. I don't really need to rub or even tap it to absorb. For a balm, it's very moisturizing.

Funny enough, I purchased this because I liked the scent (I'm weird, I know). But a year later, as much as I still like the scent, I find it too strong. My skin has become a little more sensitive recently, so I'm more careful and less willing to use products that are heavily scented.

Either way, I'm really liking this moisture balm.

Skin&Lab Fre-C Sun Protector
I received this in a PinkSeoul subscription box. Honestly, I've found so many great products from the subscription. One of the best things I've subscribed to.

This sun cream is for those with oily skin. It's supposed to be moisturizing and mattifying. I mean, in the summer, no matter what I wear, oily do seep through. But it does do a pretty decent job in keeping them at bay until mid-day or so. So far of the handful of Korean sun creams I've used, they all have a light yellow tint to them. I'm usually the deepest shade for any Korean BB cushions and luckily, no whitecast from this.

I'm not a huge fan of the cap. I find the makes the product come out messily, so I actually remove altogether and squeeze out the product that way.

Hera Sun Protector
Another product I received from a friend. I find this very similar to a Laneige Sun cream I was using early this year. Aside from the scent, everything down to the consistency is the same (not surprised since Laneige and Hera are sister companies).

I use this during the winter when my skin is on the dry side rather than in the summer. It's moisturizing, but leaves the skin looking really glowy. While I like the look, in the summer I end up looking super oily a lot sooner.

So I've basically found my perfect summer sun cream and winter one too.

The Face Shop Jeju Aloe Gel
Why haven't I been using aloe as a body moisturizer earlier? This stuff is amazing! It's moisturizing and very cooling on my skin. It dries quickly so it doesn't leave my skin feeling tacky.

The first one I tried was Nature Republic tub of aloe. The entire time using it I kept thinking, "I wish this came in a squeeze tube. It'd be way easier to apply and more hygienic too." Thank you, The Face Shop for being my knight in shining armour! I just wish it wasn't so expensive. The squeeze tube is $12.99 CAD + taxes for 300ml. Though doing a quick search online, it seems like Nature Republic Aloe Gel is about the same price.


Skinfood Peach Sake Setting Powder
I randomly saw someone on youtube talking about this and basically purchased it a week later. I usually use press powders, but before this I had been trying to find a good loose powder at a reasonable price.

I LOVE this powder. It could be a combination of oil free products I've been using, but this does an amazing job in reducing shine. I only apply it on my t-zone and it lasts me the entire day. I don't have to reapply at all. For 9 CAD, this has become my holy grail. I know people rave about Laura Mercier's setting powder, but so far I'm so happy with this, that I don't really care to try anything else. Price wise, it can't be beat.

The Face Shop Rose Cushion Blush
The makeup I've been wearing is super simple. Setting powder, a little blush and off I go. I've been reaching for this everyday because it's easy to apply and a little goes a long way. I prefer using a brush vs the puff it comes with.

The shade looks very... bubble gum pink but if I apply a light layer then it looks very subtle. Another great product thanks to the PinkSeoul subscription box. I already have my eye on a few other shades (peach!) but this doesn't seem available in Canadian stores. Possibly a Korea exclusive item?

Sephora Solid Brush Cleanser
This was recommended to me by a friend. I'd been using the weird egg shaped brush cleaner before this. I'm really liking this. I feel like my brushes are way cleaner with this brush cleanser and it's easier to clean as well.

$17 CAD for 1 oz is rather expensive... but so far I think it's worth it. I find it cuts down my cleaning time by half vs using the egg brush cleaner.

Berrisom Essence Multi Pen 
I always have trouble finding a good under eye concealer, They're usually way too light and look cakey or streaky under my eyes.

While this concealer is on the light side, it actually blends really well, doesn't make me look ghostly and doesn't settle in any lines. It really is so easy to blend. I can use my fingers, or a brush (my preferred method) or a beauty blender.

Berrisom advertises it as an all in one concealer. Anti-wrinkle, brightening and offers SPF. It does help brighten my eyes and my skin looks a lot clearer. Unfortunately, it only comes in one shade pink beige. Hopefully they'll release more. Definitely worth a try.


Jack Black Moisture Therapy Lip Balm
I've become pretty obsessed with lip balms. I have a few that I rely on, but I'm always up for trying new ones. Basically the only lip product I can for sure use up.

I received this in a duo pack as a gift. I can see why this lip balm is so popular. It's great for winter because it's really thick. I was discussing with an instagram friend because she enjoys using this as well. She made a good point; mentioned it isn't a glossy lip balm, so it's really good as a base for matte lipsticks.

While it's on the expensive side $10.50 CAD if the duo pack is still available, definitely grab it!

Avene Care for Sensitive Lips
Another lip balm that I'm quite enjoying as well. The scent is a little... baby powdery. But luckily once on the lips you can't smell it.

It's moisturizing and if I'm not eating or drinking, can last a pretty decent amount of time.

Berrisom Lip Ice Tint Bar - full review here

Marc Jacobs Sheer Gel
Basically the only lipstick I've been wearing since October. I'm not a huge fan of the vanilla scent as it's very artificial. But I can overlook it because the formula is AMAZING. It glides on like butter and it's very creamy.

I got the shade in Role Play. It's a great match to my lips, so I never have to worry about applying it without a mirror. There are no claims of it being long lasting, so the longevity is the same as any other lipstick.

Even though I love this range, I don't actually care to try the other colours. I'm quite happy sticking with this shade.

Yikes, the post turned out longer than I intended. But there you have it, my 2016 favourites. Have you tried any of the products listed? What were some of your favourites?

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