Victoria Styles has a lovely and successful Canadian beauty blog called Living Disrobed and we had a secret beauty exchange! If you haven’t visited her blog and you don’t know Victoria, definitely take some time and drop in. Here’s a very informative read on Micellar Water that she posted! I’m not really sure how but we started chatting all the time. She was one of the first bloggers who I established a relationship with and she would give me tips and advice. We realized we lots in common would chat about all sorts of stuff. I hope one day we have an opportunity to do that face to face because I feel I’ve established a real friendship with her. She’s an awesome person, sweet, funny and very talented! You’ll see that when as you go through her amazing blog. Oh yeah, there’s always great giveaways for her subscribers so don’t miss out on that action!
The two of us wanted to do something fun and interactive so we planned a beauty exchange. There are so many creative things you can do when blogging. I saw one the other day that was a green product beauty exchange. Of course, regardless of the theme, who doesn’t love to receive a box of goodies that someone thoughtfully picked out just for you? OMG, heaven, right? Almost as good as a Cadbury Crème Egg! 🙂
I prepared this post in advance so I could publish it when Victoria receives her box. That way, she can follow along and read how and why I selected each product for her. We did have some guidelines and we created cute little beauty profiles for each other. That way, I know what she has and doesn’t have and what her base colors are such as foundation, skin undertone, etc. The profile also clued me into what brands she isn’t fond of so having that was very helpful. Here are the guidelines we used:
- Purchase one lipstick
- Purchase one gloss to compliment the lipstick
- Purchase a wish list item (We each had wish lists but they were not specific. For example: Victoria wanted either a new lipstick or liner. The shopper (yours truly) would then figure out an item that I thought would be a good pick for her!
- Purchase an item of choice. (This is an item that was thoughtfully picked out for the other person to try. It could be a personal favorite that I don’t think she has but must try or a brand I know is not available to her in Canada. This was the hardest pick because there were so many things I wanted to buy. I think I accidentally purposely bought a few items in this category.
- Pick out Sephora samples (These come with every order).
- The budget was $150 US. Now, I swear I tried to stay within the budget. You will learn two things about me. I’m always a little bit late and a little bit over budget (except at work, I’m neither! I nail timing and budget every time!) God, I hope my boss is reading this!
What is in Victoria’s Box?!
I was struggling. I’ve never swapped things in and out of my Sephora cart so many times. I finally decided I wanted to get something summery that would look good with Victoria’s skin tone and peach tones. So, I chose a NARS lipstick from the Audacious collection. I’ve seen a lot of positive reviews on these and I chose the color Juliette. It’s a pink coral and it’s gorgeous on. I looked at tons of Google images, personally swatched it, and I liked it on everyone. Plus, it goes with my gloss selection coming up next. It’s a matte lipstick but I’ve not heard any feedback that the formula is drying.
This gloss is a must have. Dior products are top quality and simply beautiful in every regard. I have never purchased anything from this company that I have not loved. These people know how to do everything right from shoes to cosmetics. The gloss I purchased was the original formula Dior Addict in Whisper Beige. I don’t know what it is about this gloss and color but it’s very unique and I have never come across another product like it. You can apply it over any lipstick and it transforms it into something entirely different. In the first couple of seconds of blending, I’m always unsure and then when I really have the gloss and the lipstick blended well, I’m amazed every time! The gloss is opaque and it brings out different pigments in the lipstick as you blend. If you have a bright coral and you want to keep it warm but tone it down, Whisper Beige works magic. It’s pretty by itself too and is sort of a peachy beige tone. It can transform pinks into spectacular nudes and fuschia and purple tones into the most gorgeous mauves. Victoria can try this over all her lipsticks and see what she gets. This stuff is liquid gold! It is my all-time favorite gloss and I hope she loves it as much as I do. I think it will complement Juliette perfectly when she wants to change it up a bit. I know this is pricey for lip gloss but it really delivers and is worth the splurge. It’s as if it doubles your lipstick collection.
The Wish List
I decided to get another lipstick to help fill up her new lipstick holder. Of course, I ran right back to Dior for Rose Bonheur in the Couture Colour Voluptuous Care Lipstick. (That’s some name, ha?) Their lipsticks always get a 5-star rating. This time, I was on the hunt for something rosy (but not red) and without coral since I already walked that path. I still wanted a summer color but I wanted something soft elegant that could be worn with smokey eyes. I don’t know how to describe this color. It’s pink but it’s not a bright pink or a bubblegum pink. It’s a soft coppery pink. It’s simply gorgeous but honestly I don’t think you could go wrong with anything from their thoughtful collection. Here’s a picture of someone wearing it. Now, what’s amazing is, the Whisper Beige can transform this to an opaque nude similar to what you might see on Kylie Jenner these days. The Whisper Beige will create incredible opaque mauves when mixed with more rosy tones as well.
Item of Choice
This is the area I was having a problem. I wanted to buy polish, a bronzer from Guerlain, a peach blush from YSL. I was out of control and my cart was swerving all over Sephora’s website. Finally, I made
a choice some choices.
Caudalie Beauty Elixir – I bought a small bottle of this (1 oz) so Victoria could try it out. I know she really wants to. It’s described as part toner and part serum mix of essential oils. It’s suppose to smooth skin, tighten pores, and provide radiance to the skin. Huh, now I just typed that and I’m wonder why I didn’t get one for myself. It’s got a fresh herbal scent and is very refreshing when sprayed on the skin.
Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liner – I am a freak when it comes to eye liners and gels. Honestly, I have tried over 25 different products on the market. For liners, it came down to Stila, Tarte, and Kat Von D. Stila prevailed, here’s why. It’s longer lasting, has the most precise of all applicators, and is the blackest. It will last all day. I’ve experienced ink flow issues with Kat Von D and I’ve heard this happens with Tarte although I haven’t experienced the problem with Tarte. This is a liquid liner that is capable of achieving the most precise and beautiful cat eyes one can draw. I don’t think Victoria has a lot of Stila’s products and neither do I but this one blows my mind. It’s an amazing liner and I rarely have to redo my wings now that I’ve discovered this one. Victoria hasn’t reviewed it, so I don’t think she has it.
Make Up For Ever Artist Eye Shadow in Powdery Pink – I searched high and low for a deep matte pink shadow. Why? Well, a couple of reasons. These colors can be magnificent when blended out with neutral browns, coppers or black. I know Victoria has the Bobbi Brown neutral palette so I wanted to see what kind of looks she can come up with using this shadow. The matte shadows from Make Up For Ever are very highly regarded by make up artists. They are long lasting, have outstanding pigment, and contemporary colors. Wayne Goss would agree. There’s also a look you will see periodically on the red carpet or other types of events where these deep pinks or reds are used in conjunction with neutrals and black to create a beautiful grunge smokey eye look (see photo examples below). I got Victoria the coppery pink Dior lipstick that is soft enough to wear with a smokey eye. With her neutrals, she can blend browns and coppers into this pink shadow to achieve a gorgeous look. This one could be a miss but I am feeling optimistic. To top it off? A perfect dramatic cat wing with the Stila liner.
The little extras coming along that I selected are all indicated as out of stock. So, she will get different things than I selected. We’ll have to wait and see what samples she actually gets and posts.
- Dolce & Gabbaba Dolce perfume
- First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream
- Josie Maran Pure Argan Milk Intensive Hydrating Treatment
I also noticed if you spent a certain amount, there were additional codes you could enter to pick one more sample (OH YEAH!). For my final pick, I opted for the Caviar Repair Lengthening Hair and Scalp Elixir. I thought it would be nice to get a sample of a new hair product. This was also out (Grrrrr!) so we’ll see what they sent instead!
WHEW! And THAT is what is in the secret box! What do you think? Do you think she’ll like everything or have to visit Sephora for an exchange? Do you have any of these items and love em or hate em? I’m sure we’ll hear more after Victoria has a chance to try everything out!
Lots of Love,
Janine -XO ~Abeautifulwhim