Wednesday, April 30, 2014

April 2014 Pickups and Deliveries

I usually compile a haul post at the end of each month, and it's a handy method to track my beauty consumption habits and differentiate purchases from press samples. It's also helpful in highlighting products I may not end up reviewing in full. But this month was so terribly spendy that I'm still sorting and trying to decide what should go back to the stores or not. As a result, I'm only showing you the things that I am fairly certain about and leaving out products that have been reviewed. Between lingering birthday month sentiments, Sephora VIB, Holt Renfrew 15% back and summer launches, it was an intensely exciting month, and I feel thoroughly and completely satiated but with the exception of one or two things that are still on the shopping list. And now, the haul:

Pickups (things I bought)


See? I got all excited and birthday month bled into April. STUFF.


I've been moaning about upgrading makeup brushes for months, years. Everyone raves about Real Techniques, so I snatched up this set when it showed up at... you guessed it: Winners.


For some reason, I got really excited about the new Shu Uemura Tint in Gelato Lip and Cheek Colors. I stalked the counters for the better part of April and spent about an hour looking at all the shades at Holt Renfrew when they finally arrived. I managed to choose shade CR 01, a brightening pinky coral.


While spring cleaning, I got rid of some old perfumes and decided it was time for an upgrade. I've wanted Tom Ford Neroli Portofino forever, but the perfume never convinced me that it was worth the $200+ asking price. I settled for the much more modest body oil during Sephora VIB sale, and it's the best decision ever: I'm in sunshiny heaven on the nights I slather it before bed. On the flip side, Annick Goutal Nuit Etoilée is a nice contrast to the sun -- it's all mint and shadowy coolness combined with sweet forest smells. Delightful.


I didn't mean to spend money on hair at all, but it's easy to forget that short hair requires more maintenance. Right now, raggedy strands are twisting up in all sorts of directions that they're not meant to, and regular hair gel doesn't have enough power and grip. I had fun browsing the bevy of men's hair styling options: putties, waxes, gels -- cement-like things with hold, minus the shine and gloss of '90s boy bands. That's where I'll look for low-cost "dishevelled" bed head styling from now on. I returned $50 worth of Bumble & Bumble products at Sephora and got this $5 L'Oreal Studio Indestructible Sculpting Wax, which is just as good as B&B Texture (Un)Dressing Creme although the texture is different. I kept the Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray because it's tried, tested and true. It's the one hair splurge that I allow after a hair cut because it gives amazing volume and hold without any strong "tropical" or fruity scents.


I have become obsessed with tea-scented things. Must have them all!


I mentioned Benefit Gimme Brow already a few posts ago. And I had no intention of getting MAC Casual Colour in Hi Jinks! until I saw that it was sold out at all the MAC stores. By luck, I stumbled across it at the MAC in Sherway Gardens. Question marks because I'm not sure if I'm keeping it or not.


Diptyque samples of the new Geranium Odorata and Eau Lavande. To put it simply, Geranium is nice and feminine and spring-like. Lavande is more unisex/masculine.

Deliveries (press samples and gifts)


From lovely Monika! Blush colours I adore and a bronzer that is coming in quite handy.


We bloggers are an opinionated sort, and sometimes we get a little rowdy on social media. I made a small stink on Janine Falcon's Instagram about Revlon's bad habit of discontinuing perfectly fine products. As a result, I ended up with a hoard of the new Gel Envy series to try and subsequently eat my words. (So far so good. I'm impressed.)


24 Karite Shea Butter Hydration Lotion in Peppermint Vanilla. It's potent stuff. My room smells like Christmas for days if I leave the jar open for a few minutes.


Previously reviewed Simple goods -- I guess it's always nice to have more.



VICHY GALORE. So far, I've only made a quick mention of the ProEVEN BB Cream. Others to come in due course. I'm going to spread them out throughout the year to give myself the time to thoroughly test them out.


Clarins and their seasonal new launches. Reviews to come.


Been a while since I've spoken about The Body Shop, but as you can see, I'm up to my ears in skin care. Hope to squeeze this in at some point, as I've become more interested in brightening treatments as of late.


My first trial with ESQIDO being such a big hit, I thought it'd be fun to amp up the lashes again, just in time for wedding season. Reviews to come.


And finally, BECCA was kind enough to send me a replacement for the busted up Resurfacing Primer.

I am so full on beauty buffet this month, it's impossible to think of anything more to acquire. Maybe. Haha. So, what did you get this month? Anything here that you want to see discussed first?

40 comments:

  1. I smelled that geranium one yesterday! It was kinda fiercely summery but also earthy...it was interesting. But not that interesting. LOL.

    And oooh, Vichy :D

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    1. Geranium and earthy, you said??? I'll definitely have to take a whiff! Those two words have my name written ALL OVER them!

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    2. I never find Diptyque to be all that interesting either, but I keep sniffing in case that changes some day, lol.

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  2. I also got Hi Jinks a couple of weeks ago. Have only briefly swatched it and tried it once on my cheeks, but I like it!.

    Last night I picked up one of the new Dior Fluid Sticks and a YSL nail polish (Jade Imperial). It's 5am and I wanna paint my nails!

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    1. The reason I'm not sure about keeping Hi Jinks! is that I'm not a big fan of the Casual Colors on cheeks - it takes a bit of work to blend. It feels more like a lipstick in a pot to me, so I'm hoping it works well both ways. LOVE the colour, so that's why I picked it up.

      LOL @ 5am dilemmas. I FEEL YOU.

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  3. Wow you did have a spend month hahaha! Good for you!

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  4. Is that Jack Black balm the same as the Black Tea and Blackberry one? I don't see Blackberry written on it, but maybe it's just a different label for Canada. I love tea-scented things too, but dislike blackberry, so I am curious if such a thing exists!!

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    1. No Blackberry in this one - I wouldn't have picked it up then. I'm new to Jack Black so I'm not familiar with all the flavours, but I do know that the ones with SPF only came to Canada not that long ago. So, it could be that it's a Canada-only flavour, except I have great doubts that anyone would go to the trouble, lol.

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  5. Ahhhhh! This just means more posts to come! :DD HAPPPEEEE!

    I got a new RBR loose finishing powder. It's made out of fairy farts and butterfly wings.

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    1. I always have at least 30 posts in draft. More and more and MOAR. :D

      LOL, RBR unicorn things that I do not understand. Show them to me.

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  6. Beautiful selection! I'm looking forward to the reviews. x

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    1. I think first up will be the Shu Uemura Gelato Tint. :)

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  7. Annick Goutal's fragrance sounds right up my alley. It's not from Sephora, is it? I can't find it on the site.

    Also, short hair products are fun! When I had a pixie cut I used an Aveda pomade/wax product. I'm not a huge Aveda fan, and it was a bit spendy, but it was amazing and the tub outlasted the hairstyle!

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    1. There's no department store or boutique that I know of that sells Annick Goutal in Canada. You'll have to forage Winners or shop online. They're at some US department stores though.

      Funny, I haven't stepped foot into Aveda in years, but I took a peek this weekend and did check out their range of pomades. I think that I fell in love with a rosemary mint soap but walked out empty handed.

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  8. Woo! That's quite a loot! First I can't believe the Real Techniques brushes are now at Winners -- I am quite tempted to make a quick trip there since I've been wanting this exact same set for a while. I seem to do this a lot after reading your posts... Danger danger. I've just returned from the Montreal L'Oreal warehouse sale and I spent a pretty penny.
    That Jack Black lip balm in Black Tea sounds delightful! I'm intrigued. I used the mint one a while back and it was great, I just didn't think the tube lasted very long.
    I think I wanna hear most about the Vichy ProEven line! I have an uneven skintone so I am also looking into brightening products right now.

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    1. RT brushes show up once in a while and are quickly snatched up, not regularly stocked. I let the first few sightings pass but finally had to get a set to see what the fuss is all about. LOL, yeah, I'm a big Winners enabler. :D I'm so scared to go to warehouse sales though. Never been!

      I wanted a balm with SPF and have wanted to try Jack Black for a long time, so it killed three birds with one stone. Four, actually, because I got it at Holt Renfrew when they were having 15% back on cosmetic purchases. :)

      ProEVEN is going to take the longest to report back on because I won't be able to tell how well it's working until I've been using it for months. I'm trying to decide if I want to review it all at once later or in pieces as I reach a conclusion.

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  9. I feel the same. Not many things I really want. I just ordered another Fluid Stick and my lemmings are quite calm for the time being. I might buy the Dior single eyeshadow Cabine or Chanel Tisse Gabrielle if they become available in the U.S.
    I'm excited to hear about the Guerlain pressed meteorites as well as the Shu Gelato! :)

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    1. Oooh, Tisse Gabrielle is stunning. I vote for that. :)

      Shu Gelato is coming up, as soon as I can get a good cheek swatch. It's been rainy here all week, same as you guys. :(

      The Guerlain was a risk and something I sort of regret. Still have to play around with it and see if I can get it to work properly!

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  10. Wow! Lots of exciting stuff this month! I'm especially curious to know your thoughts about the Real Techniques brushes and the Smashbox lipstick. I had a really good customer service experience with Smashbox a few weeks ago, and I want to buy from them again because of it, but I'm not sure what I want! Maybe lipstick, if it's good.

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    1. Quite liking the RT brushes so far, and I haven't opened up the Smashbox yet. It's a matte fuchsia. Generally their eye shadows, liners and lip products are quite good. Their most well-known item is the original face primer, but after using up 1.5 bottles, I decided I didn't like the silicone-y feel of it, nor was it as mattifying as I needed it to be. You probably can't lose with the lipstick. :)

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  11. ooo looking forward to the Vichy reviews!! really curious about the rest of the ProEven line.

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    1. That's going to take the longest to review, but I think the cleanser is a good option for summer. Takes very little to lather up nicely and leaves the face feeling super clean. :)

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  12. Very nice selection! I am excited to read about the Guerlain powder, and all the skincare :)

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    1. The Guerlain powder is very white. I thought it was going to apply more translucent but it can appear quite stark. I think I need to experiment with different brushes and techniques.

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  13. So many beauties!!! I stayed stuck on your first pic! That Guerlain compact!!! Can't wait to read what you think of it! :)

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    1. Hehe, you can see my reply to Emi above re: Guerlain. I think first up among the new things is the Shu Gelato.

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  14. All the anticipatings! <3
    Although I admit I'm spending more time squinting at your bookshelves -- I also have that Norton Moll Flanders. WHY ARE YOU FOCUSING on the makeuppy things in front of the books, camera? Oh right.
    And GAH, wedding season XD Maybe I should try to figure out falsies in an effort to keep my brain from suffocating from boring pretty photo-appropriate not-embarrassing-the-bride looks.

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    1. To be honest with you, I was so annoyed with Moll Flanders as a novel. The lady is hilarious though!

      I wrote a post on my books way back when - here! http://beautyreductionista.blogspot.ca/2013/02/things-i-like-lot-4-books.html There's no copy & paste of text function on my blog so you can just type in "books" in the search engine at top.

      YOU do not need falsies. I need falsies just to go to the grocery store!

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  15. I'm using a deluxe sample of the primer right now, and I don't mind it but I also don't absolutely love it either. At heart, I'm a lipstick girl, so that may be one of my next purchases...Thanks!

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    1. That was supposed to be a reply of course...Blogger hates me tonight!

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    2. Lol, Blogger hates all of us, even when we're the authors. -___-

      They have a lot of different primers now, but I don't think any will compare to Hourglass. And let me know later which lipstick you get. :)

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  16. POW! What a motherlode, Liz! Holy moly. I bought next to nothing last month - two items during the VIB, a Marc Jacobs Lip Gel and a NARS Eye Paint. I did spend a good chunk of change on a couple skincare items from Yuli, and that could be why I hardly picked up anything else, the brand is COSTLY. I'm excited to hear reviews on just about everything you've got going on here!!

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    1. You're always so marvellously restrained - although Yuli skin care does sound like a heavy splurge. I think that I go nuts about twice a year, and this was long overdue. Hopefully I'll relax now and just sit happy with my hoard. LOL

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  17. WOOHOOOOO! Looooove haul posts! :D First things first: Do I need that Chanel blush? I've been eyeing it and eyeing it and can't make a decision... But, realistically, I bought over 20 blushes in the past month...

    For whatever reason, I can't bring myself to buy those Real Techniques brushes. I'd rather save up and splurge on Hakuhodo brushes. And I'd rather get Sigma for synthetic brushes. (And also, I have a hundred brushes and I really don't need anymore, but you know my hoarder tendencies.) But for some reason, I always recommend them to my clients who are looking for more affordable brushes... even though I haven't tried them. (They're sold at Wal-mart now, apparently.)

    I didn't know Jack Black made a black tea scented balm! I've had the Black Tea & Blackberry one, which I quite liked. I'm trying to use up all my lip balms until buying a new one. Which may take ETERNITY.

    If you don't mind a lightly used Hi Jinks! (I've used it once), you can return yours and I can give you mine.

    April was also the most expensive month in beauty items for me in probably a year (DAMN THAT SEPHORA VIB SALE). I could have bought half a Proenza Schouler bag. :P

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    1. I sort of collect bright and vibrant Joues Contrastes, so it was hard to say no to Vivacite. It's not THAT unique but unique for CHANEL, you know? I think between the new shades, that bronzy Canailles is prettier.

      I never go to Walmart, so I haven't seen RT brushes anywhere else except online. They're actually really good - never read a bad review about them yet, and I hear mixed opinions about Sigma. I'd so love to Hakuhodo EVERYTHING. I have this crazy notion that I should build a luxe blush brush collection from a selection of luxe companies because blush is so important to me. LOL

      I saw both Black Tea AND Black Tea & Blackberry flavours at Holts. It seems a bit weird to me that they'd have both, but maybe one of them is an older variation? I hope Black Tea won't be difficult to find in case I fall in love with it!

      You save up for a Proenza and I'll save up for a Celine. I did some casual browsing at Holts yesterday and finally felt a hankering for fashion after 3 years of being dormant.

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  18. Guess what... I didn't pick up ANYTHING at all!!!! So proud... but I didn't even feel like going to the mall, so is it considered a cheat on my part? You know, nausea and stuff?? LOL LOL! However, I am mighty tempted by these Esquido lashes!!! The fact that they do international delivery makes things a little too easy. Hahaha! I know I will just take the plunge one day...

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    1. Not even online purchases? You're a champ, Lily! Esqido has great service and makes great lashes. Definitely a worthy splurge!

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  19. I'm practically shopped out looking at all of those wonderful things! Lol

    I'd love to see some of those Revlons in action :)

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