Saturday, 28 January 2012

DIY Sugar Lip Scrub

Are your lips dry, and chapstick just isn’t cutting it? It’s a known fact that when your lips are chapped, lip products don’t apply evenly. I wanted to share with you a quick DIY lip scrub made of sugar that will help smooth out your pout and the best part, it’s totally inexpensive!

Sugar is amazing for our lips because of its exfoliating abilities. You can buy lip scrubs that contain sugar from stores like Lush, but this is much cheaper because most of us have the ingredients right in our kitchen!


Here’s what you’ll need:

- 1 teaspoon of Sugar (I would suggest using a course sugar, such as "Sugar in the Raw", it'll scrub a lot better than fine sugars)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Vaseline
- Peppermint Oil (this is completely optional, I just like to add it for a little flavour) 
- Small bowl or container for storage/mixing
- Spoon 


1. In a small bowl, mix together 1 teaspoon of sugar and add in a few drops of Extra Virgin Olive Oil. If you add too much oil its okay, just add more sugar. The consistency should be thick!

2. Add in about a dime-sized amount of Vaseline into the mixture. 

3. Mash ingredients together with a spoon. 

4. Add a couple drops of peppermint oil for some flavour. Peppermint will stimulate blood flow to the lips, making them appear fuller. 

5. Once mixture is complete, rub the scrub onto your lips for about 60 seconds and wipe off the excess. 

6. After the scrub, follow up with your favourite lip balm or salve to protect that pout!

You can definitely double or triple up the batch and put it in a container for storage. I would suggest putting the mixture in the fridge, and I wouldn’t keep it in there for more than a week.

I’ve also created a twitter for this blog! You can find us now at (@gr8northbeauty), but you can still drop be a line on my personal twitter (@peachplumpears). The twitter will keep you up to date on upcoming reviews, beauty tip of the day, or any coupon codes that I hear about in the beauty community, so please subscribe!

Just click on the picture to take you to our twitter link!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Revlon Lip Butters Review - & Update on Clairsonic Mia (Day 3)

Revlon Lip Butters

I finally found the Revlon Lip Butters that have been talk of the beauty community for quite some time now. They were released back in December of 2011, but they have finally launched in Canada, and I was lucky enough to snag a few while they were on sale! Normally, they retail for about $9.00 at your local drugstore (I got mine from Rexall in #yeg) but they were on special for $6.00. I was furiously testing all the lip butters out to figure out which ones I liked, and narrowed them down to only four!

The thing that I like about these lip butters is that they’re super moisturizing! It’s the perfect compromise between a lip-gloss and a lipstick. They're nicely pigmented, and go on buttery smooth.

Now, with that being said, I have to say that some of the colours in the line are hideous! I was disappointed that the lighter shades were a lot less pigmented than the darker ones, and some colours just didn’t look like they would flatter any skin tone.

Here are the four that I selected, I especially love the reds in this line! A nice glossy red suits me a lot better than a matte shade, so I am definitely planning on rocking these in February closer to Valentines Day! 

I probably won’t buy anymore colours, just because these were the only four that I really liked.. but I have to say you can’t beat the price (its still a lot of cheaper than a MAC lipstick), and the wear and quality is comparable to high-end brands.

Overall, i’m impressed. I have to say that drugstore makeup has come a LONG way in the past few years!

Clairsonic Mia Update – Day 3

Today I decided to experiment to see if the Mia can take off face makeup like it claims to (please remove eye makeup before though, the eye area is too delicate to cleanse with the Mia) I was a little skeptical, especially since most of us wear foundation, concealer, powder, finishing powder, blush, etc. and many other layers of makeup that make it next to impossible to get ALL of it off. I’m happy to report that the Mia proved just how deep cleansing it was (although after, the brush head was FILTHY). I then used my toner after cleansing and noticed that no excess makeup was coming off…. Amazing!!!

I’m continuing to notice a change in my complexion. The few breakouts that I did have prior to purchasing the Mia have diminished really quickly, and my skin has never felt so smooth. Secondly, I noticed that some of the larger pores on my face (around my cheeks and my nose) are starting to look a little smaller. So far, really impressed with the Mia.

We’ll call this my ‘before’ picture...

 I’ll take another picture in about a month to see if we can notice a drastic difference! My skin is far from perfect, but I still feel comfortable enough to share with you scary pictures of me without any makeup on. 

Stay tuned for my next blog post, which should be up in the next few days! I have been really trying to update as much as possible, seeing as in the next couple of months I will be embarking in my final practicum of my degree and don’t know how much time I’ll have to dedicate to blogging!

Twitter: @peachplumpears

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Clairsonic Mia.. Unboxing and First Day of Use!

With a gift certificate from my lovely parents from Christmas, I made my way to Sephora to finally get around to purchasing a Clairsonic Mia. I have been mulling over this baby for months, but with its steep price tag of $149 plus tax, I was a little reluctant if it was worth it. After months of research, and Youtube videos, I was finally convinced that I had to try one of these out for myself.

I ended up with the Mia, because the other models didn’t appeal to me. The only nice things about the higher-end models are that they have different speed settings. They also count down and beep when you need to switch sides of you face, but I figured since I could count myself this feature seemed a little useless for steeper price tag. The best part about the Mia is that it’s completely WATERPROOF! Meaning that you can use it in the bath, the shower, throw it in the sink, and it won’t ruin the Mia.

The Mia came with an external charger that attaches onto the device with a magnet. This is a really neat feature; I’ve never seen a charger like this before on a beauty product. It also came with a set of instructions, and a trial sized bottle of Clarisonics cleanser, but I chose to opt for my regular cleanser instead.

Before you use the Clairsonic Mia for the first time, you have to make sure that you charge the thing for over 24 hours. Seems a little crazy to leave it on the charger for that long, especially since a single charge will only give you about 20 minutes of use.

Now, I heard that in the beginning uses of the Mia, you tend to break out a couple of times. This is because all of the sebum and excess oils that lie under your skin are resurfaced as you cleanse. Over time, the oil will diminish and you’ll notice your skin looks and feels a lot better.

After my first use with the Mia, I can say two things:

1. My skin had never felt so cleansed! I could seriously feel the product seeping into the pores of my skin, which felt super refreshed

2. My skin felt smoother after the first use. It exfoliated the dry patch of skin around my nose, and my moisturizer seemed to effortlessly glide on after cleansing.

Over the next few weeks, I plan on continuing to review this product.. so stay tuned as I explore the Clairsonic Mia further. Want to pick up a Mia for yourself? It’s available at Sephora or

Twitter: @peachplumpears

Monday, 23 January 2012

Perfect Primers

Hey everyone! So sorry that it has been a while, but after an internet shortage in my building, and a little bit of travelling, I am finally back and ready to get down to business! I have been working on some requested pieces, as well as shooting some videos that I’m still tinkering with. I’m a complete novice to  movie editing, so bear with me if it takes a while for those to show up on my blog!

Anyways, in the spirit of the ever-changing weather (seriously, -40 one week, and then +4 the next?!), I wanted to share with you products that will ensure your makeup stays in place no matter how crazy the weather may be!

First off, why are makeup primers so important? Well, think of your face as a canvas. Would you just glob on paint and hope it stays?! No. You need a primer, to bring out the vibrancy and long-wear of the paint.. or in this case, makeup. Primers should be a staple in your makeup bag to ensure it’s applied flawlessly. Without it, your at the risk of a makeup meltdown.. or worse, a serious case of ‘cake face’.


Recommended Primers For the Face:

1)   Korres Mattifying Pomegranate Makeup Primer

I got a sample of this from Sephora, and I was instantly in love with it and had to buy a full tube. What I really like about this primer is that it doesn’t leave your skin feeling greasy after. Silicon-based products tend to make your skin feel gross, but this primer is water-based. It minimizes the appearance of pores, and leaves you with a lovely canvas to apply your makeup. And it smells great too! The product comes out like a concealer, in both texture and color but blends seamlessly and invisibly on your skin.

2)   Kat Von D Rehab Priming Elixer

This primer is lovely. The packaging is cute, but I’m not too fond of the applicator. It’s like an old-school stopper, which is very apothecaryesque (yes, I’m making up my own words here, total trendsetter), but seems a little unhygienic to me.  But, this primer makes your face feel amazing! And it smells like cucumbers, and isn’t irritating to the skin at all.  After using this product, my makeup just glides on and really gives my complexion a glow that can’t be achieved without a primer.

Recommended Primers For the Eyes:

1)   Benefit’s Stay Don’t Stray Eye Primer

My favorite of all the eye primers, because it’s gentle on the eye area, yet makes my eye makeup last all day without creasing. Has a great application form, and the bottle lasts you months before you need to repurchase. A little goes a long way with this product!


Urban Decay Primer Potion Tube

This eye primer is another one of my favorites, because Urban Decay has proven time and time again to be one of best makeup brands for both price and product quality. Comes in a variety of shades, although I like the original one because its matte and the other ones are overloaded with too many sparkles for an everyday application. This tube, just like Stay Don’t Stray will last you months and is something that I’ve repurchased over and over again.

One Primer That Sucks:

Bare Escentuals Prime Time

This is a primer that is loaded with WAY TOO MUCH SILICON. After application, your skin feels smooth, but somewhat suffocated, in a goopy product that I found doesn’t hold all day and my makeup appeared to flake off after a few hours of application. In my opinion, its not worth the price, and the tube is ridiculously small, so you have to repurchase the product over and over again. Maybe it’ll work for you, but it’s just not for me.

I hope that was helpful for you, and that during this uncertain time with our climate, your makeup stays in place all day! Check back in the next couple of days for my next blog post! 

Twitter: @peachplumpears

Friday, 13 January 2012

Quick Tip of the Day - Cleaning Makeup Brushes

Noticing more breakouts then usual? Before changing your skincare line, or blaming hormones, think about your makeup brushes. Have you washed them lately? It’s something that people seldom do, but just imagine all the gunk, sebum, and excess makeup that’s just being caked on your face day after day by using dirty brushes!

You should wash your brushes at least once a week. Investing in a good brush cleanser can make all the difference in the world. I use MAC’s Brush Cleanser because it’s both relatively cheap (about $15), and it’s a large bottle so you don’t go through it too quickly.

Can’t afford liters upon liters of brush cleanser? No problem!  A couple of cheap substitutes for brush cleansers include:

-       Baby shampoo
-       Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Washing your brushes:

1.     Wash only in lukewarm water – not too hot, not too cold.

2.     Don’t ever hold the brush upside down, especially when wet! The moisture from the brush can cause the glue that holds the base of your brush together to fall apart, rendering your brushes useless.

3.     Put about a quarter-size amount of brush cleanser in the palm of your hand and swirl your dirty brush in it. Continue to swirl until the majority of the gunk gets off the brush. Rinse under water until it runs clear.

4.     When brushes are all clean, place in a cup bristle-side down.

5.     Leave brushes overnight to dry. Sometimes this can take a little longer than usual if you have too many brushes in a cup. It can take anywhere between 6 to 12 hours for brushes to completely dry.

Another alternative to drying your brushes is Sigma’s Dry’n Shape System! It’s essentially a brush holder with fibers that dry your wet brushes within 4 to 6 hours. They retail on the website for $29.00 US dollars. This thing is magic, it cuts down drying time and makes sure that your brushes keep their shape! You can find it online at the Sigma store, the link is (

Ultimately just remember, you’re spending money on quality makeup brushes, so you have to take good care of them! Make sure their clean, and your skin will thank you!

Until next time my friends, keep washing those brushes. I will see you in my next post! Please tweet me @peachplumpears with any requests that you may have for upcoming blog posts! 

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Review - Arbonne's RE9 ADVANCED Skincare Line

Recently, I got a chance to try out this skin care line by Arbonne. It seems to me, after a little research, Arbonne is like a hybrid of Mary Kay and Avon, but a little more high quality and definitely more expensive. Now, with that being said, I have to say that I did enjoy going through the whole Arbonne catalogue and seeing the variety of different products they carried. It doesn’t just stop at skincare; there are shampoos, makeup, and even health and diet products that Arbonne carries. I myself have made a little wish list of things that I would like to try and purchase from Arbonne, because getting an opportunity to try out this skincare line has really evoked a curiosity to try out other things by them.

I have to put it out there to remain completely honest that I did get to try out this skincare line for free. It was given to me in hopes that I would review it and give my honest opinion and my thoughts to be featured in my blog. I am in no way swayed by anything free. Although its nice to try things out without costing me a penny, that will not change my opinion of the product. All the opinions on this blog are my own, and are truthful and honest. I would never want any of my followers to think that I am trying to sell them a product, especially if I didn’t like it!

I was lucky enough to receive the product in its entirety. I’m talking, nice big bottles and all. Sometimes, with testers, it’s hard to really get a feel for the product by only trying it once or twice. I have been using this product for about a week now, and feel that I can give a good review after I’ve done a little research and noticed a physical difference in my skin.

About the RE9 Advanced line:

“It’s time to outgrow aging. RE9 Advanced is a synergy of not one, but 9 major age-defying elements and botanicals in a powerful system of products clinically proven to start working within 24 hours.  The RE9 Advanced breakthrough approach addresses skin health by pairing targeted topical treatments with an age-defying supplement that accelerates results twice as fast. Antioxidant vitamin C, contained in the supplement, supports collagen synthesis and helps restore skin’s youthful glow. Algae extract enhances this activity on the skin’s outer layer, dramatically diminishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.” (Arbonne Catalogue, 2011)

Products I received and tried out:

   Smoothing Facial Cleanser (Step 1) (retails for $50)

 Regenerating Toner (Step 2) (retails for $42)

Intensive Renewal Serum (Step 3) (retails for $68)

  Corrective Eye Crème (Step 4) (retails for $65)

 Restorative Day Crème with SPF 20 (Step 5) (retails for $60)

Night Repair Crème (retails for $100)

Age-Defying Neck Cream (retails for $95)

My Initial Thoughts:

-       I was skeptical at first to try out a skincare line for anti-aging. At only 23, I haven’t really thought about wrinkles. But, this product has proven to be a key in order to get rid of some of those fine lines I’m starting to develop (due to wearing makeup from an earlier age in life, especially foundation wear, this will cause premature wrinkles). And, there is no time like the present to prevent wrinkles from forming, especially in this day and age when we want to preserve our youthful look for as long as we can.

-       The packaging for this product is absolutely GORGEOUS! It’s this lovely orange and beige color, and the containers that it comes in were something to be marveled. The packing reminds me a lot of Lancomes products, that high-end, and flashy looking bottling gets me every time!

-       The price of this product scared me a little at first. $385.00 for all of the products in total seemed like an astronomical number to me. But, in reality, all high-quality makeup and skincare products aren’t cheap. These full size bottles, should last you about 6 months (you really don’t need to use much of the products at a time, at the most, I’d say use a pea size amount) if used twice a day. If you put it into that perspective, you’re really buying the whole line for $68 dollars a month, which seems a little more affordable.

After Using the Products:

-       The smoothing facial cleanser smells good, it smells a lot like citrus, which the product boasts to have mega vitamin C to really help you skin glow and tighten up. The cleanser is great because it’s really gentle. I have somewhat sensitive skin, and this product did not cause any redness or irritation. It has a nice foaming action to it, and it really seems to polish your skin when you rinse it off.

-       The regenerating toner doesn’t smell as nice as the cleanser, but it still feels good on the face. I opted to spray the toner on with a cotton ball, and then wipe it on my face. You can also just spray it on your face, but you aren’t supposed to rinse the toner off, therefore it’ll take longer to dry if you spray too much. Usually I’m not the biggest fan of toners, for me personally, if I need a toner, I’ll use champagne (yes, the alcoholic beverage) but I did enjoy this product.

-       The intensive renewal serum was probably my favorite product. You can really feel the collagen in the serum, and it works to tighten your skin. With this bad boy, you can really start to notice a difference in the appearance of your skin.

-       The corrective eye crème was nice, but I don’t think I necessarily needed it. It did work on some of the puffiness around my eyes, but since I don’t have crow’s feet, I didn’t notice many results. I did notice some firmness around my eyes, which again is probably due to the collagen in the product. I can imagine that if an older woman were to use this product though, she would notice a definite change in the appearance of her eyes after using this product.

-       The restorative day crème with SPF 20 was another one of my favorite products. It’s a lightweight moisturizer, that doesn’t clog your pores, or makes them feel heavy, and most importantly, doesn’t make your makeup go on cakey after you apply the crème. I appreciated that the product had a nice touch of SPF, but the only unfortunate thing about SPF products, is that if you are taking pictures or anything to do with harsh lighting, you will have this ghostly glow around your face. It’s just the nature of SPF products.

-       The night repair cream is the most expensive of the skincare line, but also one of the best. This night cream is amazing! Once again, the smell is good, lots of vitamin C packed into the cream. Didn’t leave my face feeling oily, which is nice, because some night creams just glob on and somehow absorb into the face. This one didn’t clog my pores, and I noticed results of firmness and brighter skin in the morning.

-       Age-defying neck crème was probably one of the products that I thought sounded stupid, because I rarely apply anything to my neck, but delivered the most visible results. Will work great on droopy, turkey-like necks, due to the insane amount of collagen in this product.

In conclusion, this skincare line shows promise. Although I didn’t believe it at first (trust me, I’ve tried plenty of products that promise miracles in 24 hours and seldom work), I have to agree with the product that my skin was visibly firmer and brighter within the first 24 hours of use.  Unfortunately, I did notice a few breakouts from using this product. It could be my skin wasn’t used to the product, or just because of hormones, but I did notice a couple of little bumps that were irritating and required concealing. But, besides that it did not cause excessive irritation or redness that my skin is prone to.

As for considering purchasing the product, I would definitely say that I want it, but the price is definitely something ridiculous. The products are good and show promise and change in the skins firmness. I just wish the price was a little more affordable, but all amazing products have a steep price tag.  If I had to compare this skin product with another, I would say that it’s comparable in both price and quality with Chanel’s skincare line, but I enjoy Arbonne’s products because of their botanical use, and having vegan friendly products. Once I figure out which products I will buy personally, I will definitely let you know and do another review on Arbonne products!

If you live in #ymm (Fort McMurray) and you’re interested in anything Arbonne related, you can check out their website at for a full list of products, or consult with Stacey Warren, Arbonne’s Fort McMurray Representative at 780-838-3511.