Sparkled Beauty

I Live to Shine


Sonia Kashuk lip products

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

So I went back to Target for more Sonia Kshuk at 50% off. Most items had safety wraps, which was great but made it hard to judge the colours, despite the colour indications on the tubes.

With Target accelerating all store closures to mid April, I figure swatches might be helpful when you go shopping.

The 2 chubby (twistup) pencils are the Lustrous Shine lip crayons in Orchid and Dahlia, 0.08oz/ 2.3g, reg. $8.99 each.

The other 3 pencils are the Velvety Matte lip crayons in Poppy Nude, Rosey Nude and Mulberry Nude, 0.08oz/ 2.3g, reg. $7.59 each. These do not twist up.

The textures stay true to the product names. The Lustrous Shines are glossy and smooth while the Velvety Mattes are quite matte (not full on though). Both are easy to apply, not drying and comfortable to wear.

Pigmentation is excellent! The Lustrous Shines appear brighter than how they look in the tube. The colour indications on the packaging fit between the bullet colours and the swatch colours in most cases.

You would be surprised to know my favorite colour among these 5 is Mulberry Nude, lower right corner :)

On to the lipsticks.

I got 4 Satin Luxe lip colours SPF16 in Pink Buff, Currant, Red Orange and Spiced Berry, 0.12oz/ 3.4g, reg. $9.99 each.

With a typical lipstick size but squared (and a bit bulky) tubes, these lipsticks have similar texture as the Lustrous Shines above, but not as shiny. I reach for them most often.

I ventured to nude territory with this line. Red Orange is undeniably beautiful but Currant is a nice nude for pigmented lips like mine. And Spiced Berry is totally on trend. I am not sure about Pink Buff on me just yet :)

I even went to sheer territory with the Shine Luxe sheer lip colours in Sheer Pink Lust, Sheer Plum and Sheer Rouge, 0.09oz/ 2.7g, reg. $10.99 each.

Still the squared (but thinner and longer) tubes, these have the most product inside the packaging and the highest price point among the 4 types of lip products in this post.

The tube colours are definitely not an indication of how they look on the lips, due to the sheer finish. Sheer Pink Lust would not show up much on me and the other two give a slight hint of colour only. I will repeat myself though to say these lipsticks feel nice on and wear comfortably.

Phew, that was a lot of colours. It will boil down to your preference in textures and finishes in a lip product to pick a favorite, but I hope the swatches are helpful.


Weekly flyer deals

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

Heads up: hold off your Sephora purchases until the Spring sale:
- April 17-20 for BIs (10% off)
- April 16-21 for VIBs and April 12-21 for VIB Rouges (15% off).
I was hoping for 20% though.

Soap & Glory is exiting Sephora, with products already landed on the US sale page (don't ship to Canada unfortunately). Words are Stila will be next!

Earth Hour is this Saturday between 8:30 and 9:30. Lights out!

*** Saturday & Sunday: 18,500 points with $75 purchase
*** Sunday & Monday: Quo brushes: 40% off

*** All week:
- L'Oreal skin care: 30% off
- Olay Total Effects, Neutrogena Hydro Boost moisturizer: CAD19.99
- Aveeno facial cleanser, Biore acne care: CAD9.99
- Garnier facial moisturizer: CAD16.99
- Vichy Dercos hair, Normaderm/ Homme skin care: 25% off
- L'Oreal Infallible eyeliner, Colour Riche/ Telescopic eye: CAD7.99
- CoverGirl eyeshadow single, Smoochies: CAD5.99; Colorlicious lip, Clean/ Smootheres makeup: CAD6.99; Ready Set Gorgeous makeup: CAD7.99; eyeshadow quad: CAD8.99
- Revlon Color Burst lip, Bold Lacquer/ Lash Potion mascara, Ultra HD lip: CAD9.99
- Maybelline Color Sensational Rebel Bloom lip: CAD8.99; Dream/ Fit Me, Brow Drama, Master Graphic eyeliner: CAD9.99
- Physicians Formula: 30% off
- Rimmel (selected): CAD5.99.

Lawtons: lots of bonus Airmiles offers with purchase
- H2O skin care set: 20% off (bonus Airmiles)
- L'Oreal Youth Code skin care: 30% off
- Neostrata Radiance, Exfoliating, Lightening, Brightening skin care: 20% off (bonus miles)
- L'Oreal lipstick, gloss, lip liner, Extraordinaire gel, press on nails: 20% off (bonus miles)
- Marcelle eyeshadow, eyeliner, skin care: 20% off (bonus miles)
- Physicians Formula: 20% off (bonus miles)
- Mavala: 25% off
- Red Carpet Manicure: 20% off (bonus miles).

Walmart: Revlon HD lipstick, gloss: CAD7.96.

- CoverGirl Perfect Point/ Line Exact liquid/ Ink It eyeliner, Clean makeup, Ready Set Gorgeous foundation, powder, concealer, Flamed Up shadow pencil/ mascara: CAD5.97
- Maybelline Volume Express Lash Sensational mascara: CAD4.97; Color Elixir: CAD7.47; Dream blush, BB cream, concealer: CAD8.97; Dream powder, foundation: CAD10.97
- Revlon classic nail polish: CAD3.97; Matte/ Lacquer/ Super Lustrous lipstick: CAD5.97; Ultimate Suede lipstick: CAD7.97; ColorStay makeup, mousse: CAD13.97
- L'Oreal Infallible nail: CAD7.97; Voluminous Butterfly Intenza, Superliner Mat Matic: CAD8.97; Infallible lip: CAD9.97; Infallible Matte powder, fix spray: CAD11.97; Infallible Matte foundation: CAD13.97
- Rimmel Lasting Finish lipstick, Idol Eyes mascara, Scandal Eyes shadow stick: CAD4.97.

The Bay: F&F until Sunday in store and online
- 20% off with a Hudson's Bay credit card/ MasterCard (15% off with other tenders) on almost everything
- 10% off on furniture, mattresses, major and small appliances, personal care electrics, BBQs, vacuums, confectionery, cookware, bakeware and gadgets with all tenders.

Online GWP of $100 or more on makeup, skin care or fragrances is on until Apr 2, while quantities last.

The 19-piece gift, values over $250, includes deluxe samples in a snakeskin cosmetics clutch:

- 3LAB WW cream (5ml)
- Calvin Klein Reveal deluxe mini (15ml)
- Clinique SMART serum (10ml)
- Clarins Multi-Active day cream (15ml)
- Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Flawless Future caplet serum (0.5 ml)
- Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery complex II (7ml)
- Kiehl's Ultimate Strength hand salve (30ml)
- Issey L'Eau d'Issey body lotion (30ml)
- L'Occitane Almond shower oil (35ml)
- Lancome Advanced Genefique Youth Activating concentrate (8ml)
- NARS Orgasm cheek illuminator (8ml)
- Origins GinZing Refreshing eye cream (5ml)
- Philosophy Purity Made Simple (30ml)
- Roger & Gallet Fleur d'Osmanthus shower gel (10ml), body lotion (10ml), Fresh Water fragrance (1.5ml)
- Shiseido facial cotton (4 sheets), Benefience WrinkleResist 24 night emulsion (15ml)
- Strivectin AR serum (7ml), and
- YSL mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils Babydoll (0.2ml).

Annabelle is offering in store GWPs in March:
- Buy Expandable mascara, get Stay Sharp eye liner for free
- Buy TwistUp lipstick crayon, get Stay Sharp lip liner for free
- Buy InstaGlam, get TwistUp eyeshadow crayon for free.

The products and gifts come pre-packed, so pick and choose your favorites :)

Sally: extra 50% off red tag clearance (makeup, nails and skin care) until Sunday.

The Body Shop: B3G3F or B2G1F in store and online until Sunday. Regular exclusions apply.

Bath and Body Works: 20% off coupon on FB, good until Sunday
- Signature body care: B3G3F
- Select Specialty body care: B2G1F
- 3-wick candles: BOGO, single-wick candles: 2/CAD22
- Wallflowers bulb: 4/CAD20.50
- PocketBac: 5/CAD5
- Liplicious, C.O. Bigelow lips: B2G1F.

ColourPop now ships to Canada but shipping odds are not in our favour:
- Starts at $9.74 for one $5 Lippie Stix, $10.86 for 2 to 4 Lippie Stixes or 1 to 3 $8 Super Shock Cheeks
- Around $12 for a $30 set (free shipping threshold for the US), or $15 for 2 $30 sets.

Target : last week or so of liquidation sale for our local locations. Discounts are now in the 50 - 70% range, all Canadian stores would be closed by May 16. I am so sad!

Makeup Revolution: Free £25 gift with £25 purchase until 10am GMT Monday, to celebrate their first birthday.

The gift includes:
- Go to the City palette
- I Am palette
- 2 eye dusts
- 2 Amazing Care lipsticks
- 1 Blush Lacquer
- 1 Lip Hug
- 1 mascara, and
- 1 eye primer.
Shades might vary.

Top Box: (LE) Loulou Spring box is now available for $33, free shipping. I want to mention this box cause it has full sizes of Seche Vite and 2 Ceramic Glaze nail polish (among other things) + 4 print issues (or 8 digital issues) of Loulou magazine.


NOTD: OPI Do You Take Lei Away?

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

It is totally not like me to talk about a nude nail polish, but I am, today :)

I found two gems from OPI Hawaii collection that I was kindly sent to swatch. One of them is Do You Take Lei Away?, a nude cream.

I find the description is accurate but under certain lighting, the colour leans a bit more pink or grey, quite interesting.

Either way, this is the perfect work colour without being boring. It does not wash me out nor clash with my skin tone, and warms me up to the idea of wearing nude polish.

I would still jazz it up with glitters and things though, like I did here. I am not used to a full neutral manis.

The other favourite shade of mine in the collection is OPI Hello Hawaii Ya?, a dusky purple, pairing up nicely with Do You Take Lei Away?.

I don't see many purples this dark in a Spring/ Summer collection, but am not complaining at all.

Both shades apply easily to regular standard of OPI nail polish, opaque in two coats and lasted about two days on me.

Selected shades in the Hawaii collection are available in paint colours through Clark+Kensington, and both shades in this post are. I can imagine Hello Hawaii Ya? as an accent wall in the makeup room :)


FOTD: Milani & Vasanti

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

No burning desire was stronger than me wanting to show you Vasanti Ultra Luxe lipstick in Zimbabwe after I swatched it.

It is quite different from what I normally reach for. And as you can see, the good tube of Zimbabwe does not have too much shine and is a true burgundy with strong brown tone. Here it is today, on top of Beautique lip liner in Sienna :)

On my eyes are the Milani Bella Eyes gel powder eyeshadows, in action.

Bella White is the bright star of the look, popping in the inner half of the lids :) Paired with it is Bella Bronze in the outer half and Bella Purple in the crease blended upward.

The eyeshadows appear on the eyes more subtle than the swatches you see in the review cause I did not intend to build them up too much. Love their blendability!

Other products used:
- L'Oreal Magic Nude liquid powder foundation in True Beige
Bought this foundation a long while ago but just got around to try it now. Love the light finish but it barely gives me any coverage at all
- It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eyes full coverage concealer in Neutral Medium and Annabelle BB Skin Perfect concealer in Medium
- Sephora + Pantone Universe Foiled waterproof eyeliner in Silver on inner half of lower lash line
- Yves Rocher eye pencil in Copper Brown on outer half of lower lash line
I love the pigmentation of these pencils but could not wear Copper Brown too much, due to its red tone
- CoverGirl Clump Crusher mascara in Black
- Milani baked blush in Fantastico Mauve, very light-handed as it is super pigmented
- Wet n Wild Color Icon brow & eye liner in Dark Brown.

We are slowly thawing out of our winter "white coat". It was actually warm (i.e. near zero) yesterday lol. Have a great one!


Vasanti Ultra Luxe & Matte lipsticks

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

I mentioned before that Lawtons will no longer carry Vasanti very soon and is clearing out all stock at 50%.

No new products like the Love Brights gel matte lipsticks or the Lip & Cheek colour pods sadly, so I only went in for some basics.

I bought 3 Ultra Luxe lipsticks - Zimbabwe, Qatar and Denmark, and a Soft Finish matte lipstick in USA, reg. $15 each. Matte silver tubes, with colour coded boxes for each product line (sky blue for Ultra Luxe and indigo for Soft Finish matte).

Also grabbed a Kajal Extreme Intense eyeliner pencil in Electric Navy (reg. $18) but I won't include it in this post.

The Ultra Luxe lipsticks are formulated with Peptide technology to supposedly plump, hydrate and smooth the lips.

The Soft Finish matte lipsticks have anti oxidants for hydrating and light diffusing effects, only 3 shades available.

I don't notice any plumping effects, but the lips feel hydrated with these lipsticks. Great pigmentation and finishes. I recommend checking these out when you still can. The colour range can accommodate pretty much anyone.

Zimbabwe is a deep burgundy, my favorite colour among the 4. Ignore the glossy finish and the darken colour of the swatch. My tube turned very sticky, so I exchanged it. Check out the right colour in the FOTD to see it in action.

Qatar is a light mauve with a subtle grey sheen that is very hard to catch on camera.

Denmark, the hot magenta pink, and USA, the (matte) red, have made their names known among bloggers already. Must haves!

Did you check out the sale? What are your favorites from Vasanti?


Milani Bella Eyes eyeshadows

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

It is "Spring" in full swing here with -20 (-4F) windchill, but "Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional" so let's talk about Milani Bella Eyes gel powder eyeshadows, new arrivals in Canada, CAD8-9, 0.05oz/ 1.4g each.

I bought mine during Milani's 50% off sale on their site (reg. $4.49). My friend kindly shipped them over cause I didn't want to pay $16.45 flat rate shipping to Canada.

First row, from L-R: Bella Taupe, Bella White and Bella Navy.
Second row: Bella Purple, Bella Rouge and Bella Bronze.

All come with safety wraps, yeehaw!

Formulated as gel powders, these eyeshadows apply like regular powders, with a hint of smoothness of a gel. They are easy to blend, do not have much fallout and last quite well.

Bella Taupe is appropriately described as a taupe brown (satin matte), almost looks duochrome in certain lighting.

Bella White is a semi sheer (satin matte) white, the only light shade I got.

Bella Navy is described as a (satin matte) navy blue but swatches like a sheer charcoal black with blue shimmers to me.

The swatches were done with a damp brush, 2-3 swipes of the products for pigmentation.

The next 3 shades are more exciting :)

Bella Purple (satin matte) is darker than Bella Violet (the other purple in the range) but still not purple-y enough to me.

Bella Rouge turns out to be more pink than red. I might use it as a blush instead.

Bella Bronze, sharing the same metallic finish as Bella Rouge, shows good sheen of shimmers. It is the most pigmented of the bunch, only takes one swipe for what you see in the swatch below.

Overall, I enjoy the metallics more for the pigmentation. No duds in the bunch but wait for a sale please! Here is a FOTD I did with 3 of the shades. You can find them now at Walmart, Superstore and Lawtons.


Weekly flyer deals

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

Spring hasn't sprung here yet, but Halifax Burger Week has. Have you been out yet (after shoveling of course)?

On makeup news, @BeautyGeeks confirmed that Joe Fresh makeup is going to be available at Shoppers next year. This means we will be able to earn Optimum points with it :)

And Toronto is getting the very first Benefit store next month. It is a beautiful start for Canada.

*** Saturday & Sunday: Spend Your Points event with the bonus redemption rate:
- 50,000 points = $100 (extra $15), or
- 95,000 points = $200 (extra $30).
Today is the last day to earn x20 points with $75 on beauty products, if you need a push over the threshold for redemption in the weekend.

*** Sunday & Monday: L'Oreal Root Rescue Casting, Gosh hair colour: CAD5.99 (limit 4, after limit and rest of the week: CAD7.99).

*** All week:
- L'Oreal cleanser, Biore acne care: CAD7.99
- Clean & Clear cleanser: CAD8.99
- Neutrogena facial cleanser, acne care: CAD9.99
- Olay Age Defying, L'Oreal facial moisturizer: CAD14.99
- Olay Total Effects skin care: 20% off
- Aveeno Fresh Essentials, Nivea Q10: CAD16.99
- Pond's cream, cleansing cloths (30's), Olay facial cleanser: CAD5.99
- Bioderma (500ml): CAD26.95
- Tresemme, Aussie hair care (750ml): CAD3.99
- L'Oreal Hair Expertise: CAD6.99
- Klorane hair care: CAD10.99
- Maybelline eyeshadow, liner, Dream makeup: 20% off
- CoverGirl Clean, Smoothers, Ready Set Gorgeous makeup: CAD7.99; Full Lash Bloom mascara, Color Sensational lip: CAD8.99
- L'Oreal Infallible eyeliner, Voluminous mascara, Colour Riche lip: CAD8.99
- Rimmel (selected): CAD7.99; Extra Wow Lash mascara, Lasting finish lipstick, Kohl eyeliner: 2/CAD8
- Sally Hansen Complete Salon, Quo by Orly nail polish: CAD7.99
- Ceramic Glaze nail polish: CAD8.99
- L'Oreal Colour Riche, Revlon classic nail polish: 2/CAD8
- Revlon ColorStay Gel Envy nail polish: CAD7.99.

*** Bonus Optimum points:
- Quo cosmetics: x20 points; Quo brushes, implements: x15 points
- No7, Etival, Simple, Eucerin, CeraVe skin care: x20 points
- Garnier facial cleanser, moisturizer: x20 points
- John Frieda, got2b, Fekkai hair care: x20 points
- Life Brand sun care: x20 points
- Nair, Veet hair removal products: x20 points
- Physicians Formula eye: x20 points
- L'Oreal Infallible 2-step lip, makeup: buy 2 get 1,500 points
- Almay makeup: buy 2 get 1,000 points
- Revlon implements: buy 2 get 1,000 points.

- Garnier Clean+ skin care: 25% off
- L'Oreal RevitaLift Miracle Blur: 30% off
- Olay Total Effects: 20% off
- Maybelline Volume Express mascara: CAD7.99
- Revlon lipstick, gloss, lip liner: 20% off (bonus Airmiles)
- Annabelle eye/ lip liner: CAD4.99
- Rimmel lip: 20% off (bonus miles)
- Almay lipstick, lip balm: 20% off (bonus miles).

- St. Ives face care: CAD3.47
- Clean & Clear cleansing wipes: CAD5.67; Morning Burst facial cleanser: CAD6.97
- Pantene Pro V hair care: CAD3.96
- Herbal Essences: CAD2.46
- Maybelline Color Show nail polish: 2/CAD6; Baby Lips duo pack: CAD5.96

Superstore: No tax Saturday (NS).

Bath and Body Works:
- 3-wick candles: 2/$34
- Hand soaps: 7/$28 or 4/$18
- PocketBac: 3/$5
- Scentportable refills: 4/$10.

The Body Shop: B3G3F or B2G1F in store until Sunday and until Monday online.

Exclusions: 200ml body butter, Hemp soap on a rope, Smoky Poppy products, Vitamin E serum in oil, Drops of Youth Eye concentrate, All in One InstaBlur, InstaBlur Eye, Argan range, Red Musk products, bundles, sale items, gifts, accessories $6 or less.

Sally: Nail polish are BOGO until Sunday. Excludes OPI and kits. Limit 3 redemptions per customer.

Old Navy: Super Cash is on until April 5 in store and online:
- Spend $25 get $10
- Spend $50 get $20
- Spend $75 get $30 Super Cash
- Online only: Spend $100 get $40, spend $125 get $50 Super Cash.

Redeem: April 12 - 19.


FOTD: Hard Candy & NYC

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

Yesterday was one big white-out around here, 60+ cm on top of what accumulated from previous snow falls, plus blowing snow, made shoveling very challenging.

The whole city was shut down. Buses are still not running this morning. Huge snow banks, unploughed streets and sidewalks everywhere. It will take days :(

Forgive my rugged look while I am raising my white flag to Old Man Winter. Can't touch my brows until my shaping/ tinting appointment next week, so bear with me.

Just want to show you a quick look using Hard Candy Spring products:
- Glamoflauge foundation in Light Medium (no concealer)
- Natural Eyes eyeshadow palette: a few eyeshadows on the lids, lower lash line (smudged) and brows, together with Eyes the Limit eyeshadow primer and Take Me Out eyeliner
- Ombre baked blush in Punch as blush and highlight.

On the lips is NYC Expert Last (Satin Matte) lipstick in Red Suede. Told you it is stunning!

The only extra product I used is Essence I ♥ Extreme Crazy Volume mascara, the hot pink tube. Forgot how well it separates my lashes, not sure about volume though. Great for layering.

That is it from me today. I can go on and on about the snow and how depressed I am with it, but you probably heard enough. The positive note is I still believe in kindness. I received the best support from you guys since I posted about mean tweets.

In town last night, a baby was born whose mother was helped through snow banks to get to the hospital safely. It warms my heart. Just hope people don't take their weather frustration out on others.

Hope things are looking up where you are!


NYC Expert Last (Matte) lipsticks

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

It is 10:30 right now, it has been snowing all night and the wind is still brutal. I haven't tried to get out to shovel (if I can get out at all, since snow is now as high as my window and the back door is blocked).

Thank you so much for your support and kind comment on yesterday's post. My heart is still heavy but I'll plow through, just like I will with the snow and winter this year.

These 3 pretties are NYC's new Expert Last (Satin Matte) lipsticks. Now I did review the Expert Last lipstick line before on the blog, but there are 5 new shades with "Satin Matte" finish that I am certainly curious about.

I bought 3 boldest ones - Pure Coral, Velvety Fuchsia and Red Suede (0.11oz/ 3.2g, CAD1.77 each or 2/CAD3). The other 2 were sold out at my location.

The only indication of the finish of these lipsticks is the "Satin Matte" label on the safety wrap (and on the display). Once you remove the wrap, they look exactly the same as other Expert Last lipsticks. And they still do not fully swivel down.

Note that these Satin Matte lipsticks have a sweet candy scent to them. I do recall the Expert Last line having a light scent but not this sweet. Prepare yourself for that.

And, as you can see in the swatches, the lipsticks are not matte (or satin matte) at all. I had so much hope for them :(

Pure Coral shows up more like a pink to me. I could use a coral shade for Spring, if it comes.

Velvety Fuchsia is just like the name, a hot pink fuchsia. More fuchsia than Forever Fuchsia from the regular line.

Red Suede is stunning and bold, a classic red. Red Rapture from the regular line is slightly darker.

I am left a little disappointed with the finish of the lipsticks. The colours are pretty so they will join my stash, but it would really refreshing if I can get more matte lipsticks from the drugstores. Stay tuned to see the colours in future FOTDs.


A test post and its results

Posted by Halifax @ Sparkled Beauty

It was a dark stormy night... Just kidding! Well it is stormy right now but the point of this post isn't it. I want to apologize to those of you, my lovely readers on Sparkled Beauty, for the pictures in the post earlier today that should have remained unseen.

You might or might not know, my blog feed is shared on a local social site called Haligonia (together with other local blogs) and they kindly tweet out our new posts daily. In the last month or so, I got a few mean tweets (as replies to the tweets by Haligonia) that were uncalled for. I am on twitter a lot, so that kinda hurts.

The mani I showed you today did not meet any blogging quality but I posted it as a test. If a normal post got some hate, what about a bad post? You guys on here were too nice to say anything. Twitter, however, tore it apart, without mercy.

I proved to myself that I am not built for publicity and at this point in my life, I don't need it. This winter has been the hardest I have experienced. So I replaced the post with a green Keep Calm sign (for St. Patrick's Day) and will not seek exposure with Haligonia twitter anymore. I still blog on, rest assured. Just thought I owe you an explanation.