Favourite Makeup, Skincare and Haircare Products of 2016

Looking back on this past year, it is crazy to reflect on how many products I have tried and reviewed! Some have become my favourite and some I could take or leave. It can be very overwhelming at times to conquer the beauty industry will all the products accessible nowadays, and whether or not to invest in high end products or save the bank and use drug store products!

My favourite products of this year are a combination of drugstore and retailer products, online buys and in store buys. Below are my absolute favourite products of this year and I have linked all of them for easy access!

Ps it is a long one so grab a hot cup of hot chocolate or coffee and enjoy!!!

Sarah xo


Skin Care


Origins Refreshing Scrub Cleanser

I love this scrub. It smells amazing and is a light exfoliator I use every 2nd to 3rd day. Try not to use an exfoliator everyday as it will dry out your skin! Origins my new favourite skincare brand, they are plant based and all their products are quality, worth the penny products!

Origins Night-A-Mins Oil Free Renewal Cream

This is my nighttime go to. It is a thicker formula and adds that extra hydration for this long overnights!

Face Masks

Origins Clear Improvements Charcoal Mask

My favourite mask of the year! I used this for months now and have loved what it has done for my skin. You must start on the canvas before you can build and investing in masks is something new to me this year and it has really paid off in the skin quality and care department!

Origins Retexturizing Mask with Rose Clay

This is a mask I added recently as an alternative to my charcoal mask. I initially did break out on my first use however since then I have alternated between this and the charcoal mask and really have noticed such a difference in the appearance and quality of my skin!





Tarte BB  12hr Tinted Moisturizer in light

This has been my absolute favourite product this last year. I cannot go without using it as a base for my makeup on any given day. It goes on so smoothly, blanketing the pores and given a gorgeous very light tint to hide any redness or imperfections! Tarte is also a cruelty free brands and one of my all time favourites! There foundation, blushes, mascara and eyeshadow palettes are definitely worth checking out!


L’Oreal True Match Foundation in W3

After trying numerous for foundations, high end and low end I found the ying to my yang! This foundation and colour fit my skin tone flawlessly, the formula does not make my skin oily or dry, it gives a beautiful natural finish that you can then build off of!


Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer in Fair Neutral

I have tried about 4 different concealers this year and nothing has come close to the Naked Skin concealer. It brightens, highlights, smooths and covers every little flaw!

Setting Powder

Ben Nye Setting Powder in Cameo

I started out the year using the Laura Mercier Transculent Powder however I couldnt justify the $50 price tag. I read a ton of great reviews about the Ben Nye powder and settled on the shade cameo. I have been using this powder for about 8 months, im barely through 1/3 of the bottle and I absolutely love it! A little goes a long way, it applies effortlessly and the finish is flawless without looking caked on!




Becca Cosmetics X Jaclyn Hill Champagne Pop

Since its release early this year, this palette has been my go to for both blush and highlighter. The pigment is beautiful and the highlighter buildable which is great for the makeup rookie or the experienced highlighter!

Liquid Liner

Amaterasu Liquid Liner in Black

This is the only liquid liner Ive used this year and refuse to try anything else. Its my absolute favourite, stays on all day long and the pigment is so beautiful and black (it also comes in brown).


L’Oreal Voluminous Carbon Black Waterproof Mascara

I am obsessed with this mascara! For under $10 you get a mascara that lasts, has such a beautiful dark pigment, lengthens each lash, and separates each lash while providing volume, cha ching! You will swear you were wearing false lashes!


Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow in Ebony

This is my absolute favourite product for my brows. Its very reasonably priced considering the amount of product you get and it goes on so perfectly. The product is build able and the consistency perfect for shaping and structuring your brows. This is a beauty product I could NOT live without!!

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Gel in Clear

For finishing your brows this is an absolute must for those pesky brows that won’t stay in place! They do have tinted brow gel however i much prefer the clear!


Eyeshadow Palette


Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette

What can I say about this palette, its gorgeous, it has beautiful pigment and it blends effortlessly. It is higher priced at $55 however it is a palette worth investing in. The soft neutrals and combination of matte and metallic colours can take you from day to night flawlessly!

Morphe 350 Palette This is my absolute favourite inexpensive palette of the year. I bought it last fall and have used it consistently since. This palette is only $19US and the pigment and quality is superb! They have a huge range of palette with various colour options so I highly recommend heading over there and finding a palette perfect for you skin tone!


Makeup Tools

Best Face Sponge

Beauty Blender ($28CA) For a high end blender, this is the best one on the market by far. A beauty sponge has become an absolute must in my arsenal of makeup tools and this one is as good as it gets!

Real Techniques Beauty Sponge (2x $14CA) I started using this sponge a couple months ago and it surpassed my expectations. For $7 each this sponge is just as good as the beauty blender, the key is to always use them damp!


Brushes For Face

Morphe E2 Powder Brush ($19.99US)

Morphe E4 Blush Brush ($13.99US)

Morphe E61 Pointed Highlight Brush ($7.99US)

Brushes For Eyes

Morphe M200 Deluxe Crease ($4.99US)

Morphe M332 Fluffy Crease ($4.99US)

Morphe M433 Pro Firm Blending Fluff ($5.99)


Hair Products


Pureology Hydrating Shampoo and Conditioner

This combination has been my go to for years and I refuse to try another brand. Pureology is cruelty free and delivers the best in quality. This duo has kept my hair healthy, hydrated and shinning for years and I could not go without either!

Bumble and Bumble Repair Blow Dry

This is my absolute favourite product to use in my hair before I blow dry it! Its a serum for dry and damaged hair, my hair is really neither but the added hydration is fantastic!

Kevin Murphy Dry Shampoo

I was introduced to Kevin Murphy towards the end of the year and to say I am in love is an understatement! This dry shampoo is great, leaves my hair fresh again for another day or two and also does not leave any terrible residue!

Kevin Murphy Volumizing Mousse

This is another product I love to use prior to blow drying for added volume. As my hair grows I am loving any added volume I can get and love that this product adds volume, doesn’t leave my hair dry or oily and has

Kevin Murphy Doo Over Finishing Spray

This was another product I added to my arsenal in the last month or so but it is absolutely worth the mention! It is a dry powder finishing spray perfect for holding and holding your hair!






Warm Neutral Makeup Look

Im obviously a little obsessed with the warm neutrals this fall so it only made sense to put together a warm neutral makeup look! This is easily a look that can be worn to work or darkened for a night on the town. I am also loving it with any gold accessories;)

Ive listed the products I used down below in the order I put them on! The Morphe Palette is an absolute must, I picked it up last fall and have used it religiously. Plus its only $22 US for the entire palette, uh yes please!!!

Hope you enjoy!

Sarah xoimg_2460img_2448img_2455img_2446img_2439img_2445img_2427

Accessories: Stella & Dot Engravable Necklace, Stella & Dot Birdie Necklace , Stella & Dot Renegade Spike BraceletEliasz and Ella Bracelet (For Stella & Dot search stylist: Sarah Pankiw!)



Clinique Moisturizing Lotion

Tarte BB Tinted Moisturizer in light

L’Oreal True Match Foundation in W3

Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer

Ben Nye Setting Powder in Cameo

Too Faced Matte Bronzer in Milk Chocolate

Jaclyn Hill Champagne Pop Face Palette (Discontinued)

Makeup Tools Used:

Beauty Blender ($28CA)

Morphe E2 Powder Brush ($19.99US)

Morphe E4 Blush Brush ($13.99US)

Morphe E61 Pointed Highlight Brush ($7.99US)


Mac Eyelash Curler

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer in Minor Sin

Morphe Brushes 350 Palette (Only $22US)

Amaterasu Liquid Eyeliner in Black

Lancome Mascara Primer

L’Oreal Voluminous Carbon Black Waterproof Mascara

Makeup Tools Used:

Morphe M200 Deluxe Crease ($4.99US)

Morphe M332 Fluffy Crease ($4.99US)

Morphe M433 Pro Firm Blending Fluff ($5.99)


Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow in Ebony

Makeup Tools Used:

Morphe M165 Brow Brush ($1.99 US)

Morphe Brush M224 ($2.99) with concealer to line under brows


Maybelline ColorSensational Lipcolor in Crazy for Coffee

Real Techniques Complexion Sponge Review

The first thing you should know about me is that I cannot live without my beauty blender. I use it to apply my foundation, concealer and finishing powder for a flawless finish. If I could take one beauty tool to a desert island this would be it!

I set out looking for an alternative that was a bit easier on the bank account but just as flawless in application. Introducing Real Techniques Complexion Sponge. I purchased the two pack on Amazon however it is available locally at London Drugs.

At first glance it is larger than the Beauty Blender but still has the pointed tip for application around the eyes or lining finishing powder. Its absorption of water I would rank higher than the beauty blender, I found I had to really pat it on a towel otherwise it was too damp. Lastly the Real Techniques sponge has a flat bottom which I have found perfect for baking under the cheeks to draw a straight line along the jawline.

In terms of pricing, the Real Techniques sponge is much more affordable, I bought two for $15, where as one Beauty Blender retails for $28.

Overall, I have been extremely happy with the Real Techniques sponge after using it this past month. I would not hesitate to continue buying this brand and would definitely recommend this sponge for anyone looking for a quality sponge at an affordable price!

PS The key to using any blender or sponge is to use it damp. It allows an even application of both liquid and powder without soaking up all your product!

I hope you have enjoyed this review!

Have a great week!

Sarah xo


My Top 5 Beauty Tool Must Haves

If I could only take 5 beauty tools to a deserted island with me these would be them!

Up first up, the Beauty Blender! In case you missed my full review on this amazing tool, click here! This is my ride or dye, the robin to my batman. I use the blender to apply my tinted moisturizer, foundation, concealer and my setting powder over my concealer! The key when using the blender is to use it damp and with dabbing motions! The damp blender allows for a flawless application and the dabbing allows the blender to push the product into your skin. This is a must for any makeup collection! I also coincidently just purchased a new blender as the one I used for the last two years was looking pretty ratchety!!!




Next up, a powder brush. This powder brush by Cover FX is  vegan, cruelty free and PETA approved. With a 5/5 rating on Sephora I could not resist trying it out and the ratings are bang on. It is soft, durable and I love the size of the bristles, perfect for full face application. I use it to apply any powders, including my setting powder, blush and powder foundation! It is higher on the pay scale at $50 however after using this for over 6mths, I would highly recommend it as an investment brush!




Third on the list is an angeled brush, an essential for any brush collection. I am obsessed with this brush and use it every day to apply my brows (which is an essential part of my morning;))! You can also use an angled brush for gel liner or eyeshadow application and fixing any lipstick mishaps! This brand has become my new favourite and this Morphe Brush I got through there monthly subscription. At only $2.99 (no that is not a spelling error) it is an amazing deal! I have been really impressed with the quality of this brand for such a low price point and would definitely recommend Morphe Brushes to anyone looking to add to their brush collection!




Coming in at #4, a dual eyeshadow brush. This Urban Decay Naked 2 Brush came with the Naked 2 palette and I use it to put on my eyeshadows every single day. The two in one is brilliant, blending on one end and an eyelid applicator on the other. I have used this brush for at least a year and it has yet to disappoint. There is an similar brush that can be bought individually here!




Lastly, an angled powder brush! My favourite is the Sigma Kabuki Angled Brush! I purchased this brush in a kit, the Kabuki Kit Brush Set and have used these brushes for almost 2 years now and they have not lost bristles or their shape! The kit, including 5 brushes was $90 and the brush by itself is $24, obviously a better deal with the kit but only by what  you need! I use this brush for all all of my contouring and bronzing application, allowing for precision application! You can tell how much I use the, by the barely visible label on the handle!




Hope you guys enjoyed!

Sarah xo


Start To Finish Makeup Routine

I wanted to share my complete makeup routine with you guys, start to finish and everything in between! Makeup is such a great thing, not to take away from natural beauty but a way to enhance your own beauty! No one is perfect and I think its important that we never forget that! I love playing with different products and trying new products, and yes my skin pays for this but I love sharing this with you guys!

I had a lot of fun doing this post and it was pretty cool to photograph this look step by step!

I hope you guys enjoy!

Sarah xo


Step 1: Wash & Moisturize

Products Used: Clinique 3 Step System



Step 2: Primer & Foundation

Products Used: Smashbox Photo Finish Primer & Tarte 12hr Clay Foundation in colour Light – Medium Sand (put over entire face including eyelids and lips!)

Tip: I like to use a thin layer of primer in my T zone, under my eyes and around my chin and lips!


Step 3: Eyebrows

Products Used: Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow in Ebony, Lined and finished with Maybelline Concealer

Tip: I use a small angled liner brush with my dip brow, it allows for straight lines and is small enough to fill in with as well. I use this exact brush here! I am currently trying a morph brush and will let you know how it goes!


Step 4: Eyes

Products Used:

Urban Decay Eye Primer in Minor Sin

Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette

Tip: Always use a eye primer is you are putting on a fair share of powder, easiest explanation to why?! Protecting your investment, eyeshadow is expensive!!



Step 5: Concealer

Products Used: Urban Decay Naked Concealer in the shade Light Warm, set concealer with Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder

Tip: Waiting to conceal after you have done your eye makeup will allow you to get rid of any fall out as well as give you the nice crisp line for a wing liner!


Step 6: Blend, Set & Contour

Products Used:

Damp Beauty Blender

Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder

Kat Von D Shade & Light Contour Palette

Tip: I always use a damp beauty blender. I use it to apply my foundation and concealer every single day. Having it dap allows for a better finish and less product being absorbed into the sponge material! One you have blended out your concealer, always set it with a powder. This will help avoid any fine lines or appearances of wrinkles!


Step 7: Blush & Eyeliner

Products Used: Tarte Blush in Dazzled &  Amaterasu Liquid Eyeliner in Black (formerly Geisha Ink)

Tip: I want to do a tutorial on a wing liner as soon as my good lens is back! I like to start my lining my inner corner and then lining the wing itself. From there I slowly colour in the lines!


Step 8: Mascara

Products Used: Dior Lash Plumping Serum & Dior Blackout Mascara

Tip: I like using a serum prior to my mascara, I feel like it makes my lashes fuller while wearing mascara and it also makes it easier to take the mascara off!


Step 9: Lips & Accessories

Revlon 820 Pink Cognito

Old Navy Scarf (old)

Eliasz & Ella Bangin Bracelets (here & here)

Eliasz & Ella Rose Gold City Studs