Sephora Spring VIB Sale Picks

Hi my lovelies.  It’s that time again: Sephora Spring Sale!  I’d be remiss in my duties if I didn’t post my picks for this year.  This time, I’ve narrowed down my top 5.  THE BEST of what I’d recommend.


I’ll confess that my order was small this time around; I have lots of what I need {hahah oh no, that’s kind of untrue but keeps me from unnecessary spending!}.


Here’s what I’d pick up if I were you:


  • Too Faced Sex on the Peach Complexion Set – you get some seriously great products in this set and most are FULL SIZED! The Sweet Peach powder is a must have in my opinion as is the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara, and you get both here, plus some awesome additions for only $55.


  • YSL eyeliner – Waterproof and High Impact, this doesn’t BUDGE. Great for special occasions and even something I wear daily


  • Any Bite lipstick is a great purchase – my personal fave is in Meringue, but all of them wear beautifully and are food grade, so you’re not adding unnecessary chemicals to your daily routine


  • Benefit’s Hoola Matte Bronzer – this is a universally flattering product, and even comes in a light shade if your skin is of a paler undertone. You can use this to contour or for a regular every day glow.  Sometimes, I even use this to create a crease for a quick eye look.  What’s not to love about a multi-use product?


  • Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara – if you’re against drugstore mascaras {I love the Maybelline Total Temptation in the waterproof formula specifically}, then this is the one for you. The price-point is high, though not as high as I’ve seen, and the product really does deliver.  I’ve used other high end mascaras that just aren’t worth their weight in price, but this one? It’s a black, buildable formula with a small brush that really coats every lash.  It doesn’t transfer to the face if you use it on bottom lashes, and certainly worth a try if you’re looking for something to change up your look.



The sale is ongoing for Rouge members until May 6 – use the code HEYROUGE to save 20%.  For VIBs and Insiders, the sale goes from May 2-6, and you can use the codes HEYVIB and HEYINSIDER for 15% off.




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Too Faced Set | YSL eyeliner | Bite Beauty Lippies  |  Benefit Hoola bronzer  |

Hourglass mascara


Makeup Change Up: Spring Addition

I love all that comes with the change of seasons {ok, not so much from fall to winter because Canada = cold}, and shopping my stash or trying out new, bright tones for Spring is no exception.

I’ve done a few of these posts before {here and here for the most recent ones}  and think you guys like to see what new things I’m trying, or what tends to stay month over month – that’s how you know I’m a huge fan!

What Stayed:

I didn’t keep much around this time and opted, instead, to shake it up for Spring.

  • IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream {I use medium}
  • CoverFX Sample of their Illuminating Primer
  • Life Brand concealer/blemish stick
  • MAC Prep + Prime Highlighter in Radiant Rose 
  • Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer {I use fair}
  • Maybelline Lash Sensational and Colossal Big Shot mascara {see my review here}
  • Benefit Roller Lash and Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir mascara samples
  • Marc Jacobs Lip Liner in Prim{rose}
  • Anastasia Brow Wiz {not sure of my particular shade}
  • Benefit Eye Bright
  • Tarte Amazonian Clay Concealer {this thing won’t die.  Good bang for your buck tho, Tarte!}
  • Bite Beauty lippie in Meringue
  • Sugar Lip Treatment {used before I apply any lip product}
  • NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Sex Machine {…of course…}


What’s New:

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  • Chanel blush in Rose Initial
  • Tarte Amazonian Clay blush in Exposed
  • Rimmel Stay Matte powder
  • Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel bronzer
  • Wet ‘n Wild Highlighting Powder in Crown of My Canopy
  • NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils in Roman Holiday and Never Say Never {great combo together, might I add}
  • MAC Lipliner in Whirl
  • Tom Ford Lipstick
  • Charlotte Tilbury Bitch Perfect lipstick
  • NYX Butter Lipstick in Root Beer Float
  • Dolce & Gabbana Passion Duo in Dynamic
  • Makeup Forever Aqua Liner
  • Tarte Amazonian Clay Liner
  • Marc Jacobs Highliner in Brown{out}
  • NARS single shadow in Ashes to Ashes
  • Kevyn Aucoin The Loose Shimmer Shadow {um, not loose, so great to use} in rose shimmer
  • Surratt Prismatique Eyes in Glamour Eyes



{Just incase you’re curious, here’s what didn’t make the Spring cut}


Whew.  If you’re still with me after all that, comment below.  There may be candy in it for you…


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Life Brand Blemish Stick  |  Lash Sensational Mascara  |   MAC Prep + Prime in Radiant Rose  |  Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer  |  Benefit Eye Bright  |  Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof 12 Hour Concealer |  Bite Beauty Lippies  |  Fresh Lip Treatment  |  Anastasia Brow Wiz  | Chanel Blush and Bronzer | Tarte Blush | Rimmel Stay Matte | Wet ‘n Wild highlighter | NARS Lip Pencils | MAC Whirl | Tom Ford lipsticks | Charlotte Tilbury Bitch Perfect lippie | NYX Butter lipstick | D&G Passion Duo | Marc Jacobs Highliner| NARS Shadow |  Kevyn Aucoin shimmer shadow | IT Cosmetics CC Cream | Suratt Prismatique eyes | Tarte eyeliner similar here | MUFE Aqua Liner


Sephora VIB Spring Sale Wishlist

Spring.  It brings so many happy things after a long Canadian winter: warmer weather, pedicures, green grass and bright sunshine to name a few, but most importantly, the Sephora VIB Spring Sale.  It’s been confirmed, April 18-24th brings about 15% off for all VIB members {Rouge gets a head start April 18th, at least I get something for my over-spending..}, via the code ROUGESPRING {VIBSPRING – for regular VIB members/borderline over spenders, BISPRING – for Beauty Insiders/reasonable spenders}.  The code can be used multiple times throughout the sale.

I’ve put together a wishlist of a few things I’ve been lusting after.  I’m trying to curb spending on makeup as much as possible, but like any good beauty junkie, I’m not doing very well.  I can’t guarantee I’ll buy all of this.  Granted, it’s not a hefty list and won’t break the bank, so I’m not really 100% decided {bonus points for any rationalization of beauty product purchases…comment below if y’all are in the club with me}.  I thought you’d all like a sneak peak at just what I’m thinking I’ll buy April 18th.


Benefit’s Goof Proof Pencil – I’ve seen a number of people rave about this product and I’m willing to be a convert from the Anastasia camp.  I can rationalize giving this a try with a little discount, no?  I think I’ll be in the shade Medium.


tarte Fake Awake eyeliner – Tiffany D from Makeup By Tiffany D raved about this product; I have been a loyal viewer for years, and trust her opinions.  I often line my waterline with a darker liner appreciating the look it gives of fuller bottom lashes and with the right tone can really make my greenish/brown eyes pop.  I’m interested to see if the opposite will open my eyes and give a different sort of a pop to my overall look.


NARS Madly blush – This looks like it might be a bit light for my skintone, but I’ll give it a try.  I’ve seen a few YouTubers give it a rave review, so I’m willing to order it knowing I can return to Sephora if it doesn’t work {I try not to do this, generally, since they can’t re-sell used product}. Have any of you used this on a more olive skintone?


Too Faced Love Light Prismatic Highlighter – This isn’t a product I’ve heard any particular buzz about, but rather, I’m on the hunt for a rose gold highlighter and this one just found it’s way into my cart like it was meant to be!  I did a quick web search and can’t really find any reviews.  I’ll give this a sort of a ‘blind’ shot, though, because Too Faced generally always hits


Anastasia Modern Renaissance palette – My current collection really lacks any Anastasia products beyond her collection-staple Brow Whiz and Dipbrow Pomade really.  I heard nothing but rave reviews about the Anastasia x Mario palette, but missed the boat on that one {still hitting myself for not purchasing} so this comes in a close second from what I’ve read.  It has some seriously beautiful shades that I’d use daily – namely the golds and browns – and I’ve been meaning to add a pop of pink for spring to my look so this palette fits that bill just right too.  I also like the mix of shimmer and matte.  I have a really good feeling about this one!


There you have it.  This makeup junkie is ready – well ahead of time – to pull the trigger on some much needed new beauty bits.



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Benefit Goof Proof Brow Pencil | tarte Fake Awake Eyeliner | NARS Madly Blush | Too Faced Love Light Prismatic Highlighter in Ray of Light | Anastasia Modern Renaissance palette



Too Faced, Too Fast?

I’ve put off writing this post for a few days, and no – it’s not the all too familiar push of procrastination – but rather a mere allowance of the time I required absorb and process the news.  I know what you’re thinking: “it’s not that big a deal, it’s a makeup brand purchase”.  Yes, it’s a makeup brand purchase, yet for me it’s more: it’s a marriage of the two things I love most – beauty and business. I felt that, with time, I’d be able to provide {what I hope to be} poignant thoughts from what is a venerable marriage of passions for me.

For those that aren’t as involved in both worlds as I, perhaps you’re unaware that Estee Lauder, in an attempt to expand its breadth of brands to reach an oft missed market segment for the Lauder brand {the Millenials}, has acquired Too Faced.  Millenials hold significant market share across our modern economy when we think of our hypothetical “market of any and all products and services” into a sort of pie chart divided into age groups.  Read between the lines: if Lauder didn’t hit this market in some capacity, their bottom lines would continue to shrink and stock prince inevitably lower {albeit slowly}, eroding the estimated $10.8B in annual revenue the company has posted in its most recent results.  For a cool $1.45B, our beloved brand, Too Faced, is now owned by Estee Lauder.


BEVERLY HILLS, CA - SEPTEMBER 20:  Items from Estee Lauder's "Pleaure by Gwyneth Paltrow" are seen at Saks Fifth Avenue & Estee Lauder's "Pleasures" by Gwyneth Paltrow at Saks Fifth Avenue on September 20, 2006 in Beverly Hills, California.  (Photo by Stephen Shugerman/Getty Images)

{via could there be a less sexy or funky counter? I don’t think so}

When I considered what I knew about each of the brands, it was hard to see a successful marriage.  Let me explain: how could this brand whose bottles of foundation I can remember seeing on my dear grandmother’s vanity as I played with her makeup 20 years ago {and who still hold that spot well into her 80s) somehow join forces with a mainstream, funky, uber-successful brand with packaging that would make any grandmother feel it was “too much”?  The key to any successful M&A is brand unity, not to mention alignment of work culture among many other things.  Could Too Faced possibly be a viable target acquisition?  What would this do for the brand?  I don’t have the answers; I don’t think anyone does, but it begs the question as to whether or not this was a strategic move for both parties, or whether Too Faced has sold just too soon {see what I did there?}.


Too Faced has grown 70% in the last year.  That’s nearly unheard of, irrespective of your market, let me tell you.  With the scrumptious chocolate bronzers and various similarly fragranced {and aptly named} palettes, in tandem with the most successful Better Than Sex mascara, Too Faced is expected to post $270M in net sales by the end of this year.   A $1.45B valuation, then, seems a little light.   This whole notion of brand conglomerates – especially in the beauty industry – isn’t foreign at all.  Think about it: ColourPop and Kylie’s brand, LVMH ultimately controlling brands like Dior and the Sephora stores we all love, not to mention the fact that Lauder already owns Tom Ford, MAC and Bumble and Bumble.  Yet, I see the alliance and brand unity under the Lauder umbrella with the aforementioned list.  Too Faced seems like it would be the black sheep with its funky packaging, approach to marketing, play on names and, largely, chocolate scented products  in the Lauder world of safe, not often sleek, packaging {ok Tom Ford is sleek – but you get what you pay for}.


Beyond the physical in any relationship – that goes for business too – comes the inherent coupling of cultures in what must {and I repeat: MUST} work symbiotically to yield a successful allegiance, measured by bottom and top line growth, as well as earnings per share.  Not knowing anything about the internal corporate culture of either organization, I’m going to shy away from making any comments about what may or may not result internally from this transaction, but rather I’ll stick to what I know well: in business, the sad truth remains that often economy trumps morality.   That’s the truth, plain and simple.




With this acquisition, a company whose umbrella brands test on animals and support the Chinese market {where animal testing is, in fact, required by law – abhorrent, if you ask me}, joined forces with Too Faced, a brand so boldly against animal testing and Chinese sales.  It’s always sad to see a brand just eaten up in an acquisition, especially one so beloved {and clearly profitable} as Too Faced.  This just stunned me.  It was very hard to set aside the emotion this brought on and face the fundamentals of the transaction, which make good business sense, I’ll admit.  My initial thoughts pegged this as the end of Too Faced, with two creative, innovative founders skipping all the way to the bank.


I was wrong, and I’m thrilled to say it.  Too Faced has now publicly affirmed the brand’s commitment to not testing on animals and will not be going into the Chinese market.  The owner has gone so far as to say that they will not be “folded” in to the Lauder culture – I’m assuming it’s rather stuffy and largely dissimilar to that of Too Faced.


In this case, I say way to go to the founders of Too Faced who can {hopefully} leverage the marketing expertise, brand recognition, and access to broader sale bases beyond a website, Sephora, and Ulta stores only, further expanding the brand beyond any expectation.  Do I think it was too soon?  Perhaps.  But could the founders of Too Faced really take the brand where Lauder will?  I don’t think so.  Estee Lauder’s group of companies isn’t known to cannibalize its brands – think about those that have grown under the umbrella of the Lauder group – and so Too Faced may, instead, flourish following completion of the transaction.


Perhaps in this marriage, opposites really do attract, and Too Faced has done the best thing yet for the brand.


If you’re so inclined, here’s a few links to articles about the acquisition:

Forbes  |  |  |  The Wall Street Journal


Fall Makeup Change-Up

If you’ve been reading for a while, you know I like to post about changing out my makeup seasonally or just when I feel like I’m in the mood for a change.  This time, I suddenly got excited for the upcoming Fall season {not sure why – it’s cold, my birthday is coming and I’ll be a year older, and a frigid, Canadian winter is imminent}, and decided it’s time for a change.

I started by eliminating any products I deemed to be “summery”.  This included bright lippies, eyeshadows, or blush.

I decided to retire {and by retire, I just mean put back into my massive collection}:


  • a Too Faced Melted lipstick in Peony and a NYX Intense Butter Gloss;
  • a long-time fave eyeliner from Tarte;
  • my NYX Brow Pencil;
  • Tom Ford lippie;
  • Laura Mercier’s Rose Gold Metallic Eye Creme Color;
  • L’Oreal Infallible Eye Shadow in Amber Rush;
  • my new absolute fave blush – Colour Pop’s Never Been Kissed;
  • Too Faced Love Flush mini-blush;
  • Charlotte Tilbury Bar of Gold highlighter {was a LE item, unfortunately}.


This is really the only way I can work my way through what I’ve got and be sure everything gets the love it deserves!


As always, a few things got to stick around.  I guess you could call these some of my Ride or Die {I can’t make that phrase happen.  Still hate it…} products, or some I’m just trying to use up or am testing for future bloggity posts:

  • Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Bronzer;
  • Chanel Correcteur Perfection Long Lasting Concealer;
  • Chanel Les Beiges All In One Healthy Glow Fluid {discontinued, but they kept No 20, my shade!};
  • MAC Prep n Prime in Radiant Rose;
  • Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer in Ivory;
  • Life Brand Clear Action Acne Treatment Concealer Stick in Light;
  • Carmex;
  • L’Oreal Voluminous Primer;
  • L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara with a curved brush in Blackest Black;
  • Chanel Le Volume de Chanel Mascara {I’m thinking I’m gonna do a review on this one…comment below if you want one!};img_0119
  • Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara {not sure of the shade, likely very black – can’t read it};
  • Anastasia Dipbrow Pomade in Dark Brown;
  • Lipstick in Charlotte Tilbury Bitch Perfect and Bite’s Meringue;
  • Lipliners from MAC in Soar and MUFE in 3c;
  • NARS Satin Lip Pencil {not sure of the shade};
  • Various samples, and a dirty-azz set of Q-tips and a slightly dirty mini BeautyBlender.


What’s new for the fall?  A few things, but it looks like I kept most things around, huh?  The staples above seem to be pretty common in all of my change-out posts, so it doesn’t leave much room for new products.  I did, of course, make due with the circumstances and managed to find room for a few newbs in the daily rotation:

  • Kevin Aucoin eyeshadow in #108 Faded Heather {I love this shade all year round.  It’s so unique, but especially wonderful for fall};
  • Chanel Ombre Essentielle in #90 Fauve;
  • Chanel Joues Contraste Powder Blush in #89 Canaille {this translates to “Cinnamon” and is a welcome departure from my normal pink shades.  I love it, though, and have re-discovered this in my collection for sure!}img_0122
  • Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Radiant Magenta {y’all know I couldn’t stay away entirely from pink!};
  • BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal;
  • Benefit Eye Bright {yes this is old packaging, but I sharpened and sterilized it}.  This was totally inspired by Tiffany D and an old fave re-discovered;
  • Laura Mercier Caviar Stick in Khaki {another gorgeous shade for hazel eyes and for fall}  How I love this formula!;
  • Anastasia Brow Wiz in Medium Brown;
  • Charlotte Tillbury eyeliner in Verushka Mink;
  • Chanel Precision eyeliner in Violet Smoke;
  • NYX Lip Lingerie in Ruffle Trim;
  • NARS Velvet Matte lippies in Roman Holiday and Never Say Never.



Whew!  There you have it.  Another seasonal change out done and I’m ready to rock and find some old new loves in my current collection.


What are your faves for fall?


shop this post

{selected links to products mentioned}

various NYX products | Tom Ford lipstick | Colour Pop Never Been Kissed |

Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Bronzer | Various Chanel Products |

Anastasia Dip Brow Pomade | MAC Products | NARS Lip Pencils |

Charlotte Tilbury lippie in Bitch Perfect | Bite Meringue | Kevin Aucoin eyeshadow|

Hourglass Blush | BECCA highlighter in Opal | Benefit Eye Bright |

Laura Mercier Caviar Stick in Khaki | Anastasia Brow Wiz |

Charlotte Tilbury Rock’n Kohl in Verushka Mink


Beauty Battles: Chocolate Bronzers

Chocolate smelling products. No one does it better than Too Faced, right? I thought they were the only ones. Turns out, I was wrong. Bourjois {the former drugstore arm of Chanel} makes a chocolate bronzer. It looks like chocolate. It smells like chocolate. I couldn’t help but make the correlation between this product and my beloved Too Faced Chocolate Soleil. The latter retails for $38  Sephora, while Bourjois retails for $16. I thought I’d give it a try to see if it was a viable dupe for my beloved bronzer at half the price.IMG_2168


You can see they’re somewhat similar in tone; the packaging varies, though, with the Bourjois in a flat cardboard box, and the Too Faced in a more substantial compact with a mirror. I guess you get what you pay for with the price variance in terms of the packaging.


When I swatched the Bourjois, it pulled VERY orange on my skin tone. I’ll admit, I was a little nervous about trying it out on my skin. Oh the things I do in the pursuit of beauty blogging! Despite my reservations, I threw it in to my every day rotation so that I could give it a real go and an honest opinion for you guys.


Luckily, it didn’t pull as orange on my face as it did in my initial swatch. It didn’t oxidize and change shades throughout the day, which is great. It was a little light for my skin, so perhaps if I’d purchased the darker shade {which looked waaaaaayyyy too dark, btw} it may have worked a little better. I like to contour with my bronzer too, which is just a personal preference, so the lighter shade wasn’t quite right for me.   It went on smoothly and gave a nice glow to my skin.



{Watch the slideshow below for some more shots of the bronzers!}

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The Bourjois is a great drugstore bronzer and smells just divine. If you’ve got a skin tone that isn’t quite olive but isn’t quite pale, I’m inclined to think it would be great on you. It doesn’t come in nearly as many shades as the Too Faced product, so it may be difficult if your particular tone doesn’t fit with one of the two options Bourjois provides. I really didn’t like that I couldn’t find just the right shade for me. I’ll be sticking to my HG Too Faced bronzer for the summer, and instead of using the Bourjois for the fall as I’d hoped, I’ll make the move to my other HG bronzer and YT, beauty junkie cult fave: NARS Laguna.