Sephora Shopping Guide

Aloha pals! Sephora’s grand opening in Thunder Bay is almost upon us! In honour of this very exciting event, I thought I would share my 10 go-to purchases from Sephora as a little shopping inspiration for those of you who want a lil something but don’t know what to buy! I’m not yet 100% sure what products will be available at our store (here’s hoping most of the good ones) but here are my top 10 things to buy from Sephora! 
Go-To Makeup Products
1. Smashbox’s Photo Finish Foundation Primer (oil free) – I talked about this a lot already in my Holy Grail Beauty Products posts but a little refresher is in order! This primer is hands down the best I’ve used (and I’ve shopped around a little now too!). It did everything you need a primer to do: make your makeup last longer, prevent your makeup from sinking into your skin, create a smooth and even ‘canvas’ for applying your makeup, and it did it to a top notch level. After trying out some of the best drug store and lower-end high street primers, I’m fully committed to this one. Added bonus? It’s cruelty free! 15
2. Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Eyeshadow Palette – Seriously, if you don’t have this already, WHAT R U DOIN???? This is easily the best go-to eyeshadow palette to have in your makeup bag. I bought mine a year ago now and I still use it every day, can honestly say I’ve used every colour in the palette regularly, and still rave about the blendability and colour pigmentation. It’s got all the eyeshadow check marks for me! If your looking for a bit more of an adventurous colour palette, the I’ve heard good things about the Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat palettes! Bonus: they’re on sale! PS: ABH? Cruelty free! summer favs 16 x6
3. NARS Tinted Brow Gel – This is another product I talk about all the time but it’s the best! I promise you! Tinted brow gel is a win because it keeps your brows in check all day long and adds some natural looking colour and shape to them! Perfect for a casual lowkey makeup day OR as a finishing touch to your perfect brows! Until Glossier starts shipping to Canada and I can try out their boy brow, I’ll be sticking to my tried and true brow gel (this one…obv). And I know you’re already wondering it but, NARS? Cruelty free.
4. Kat Von D Tattoo Liner – This is my go-to liquid liner, you absolutely cannot beat the fine tip pen applicator. It’s perfect for creating really itsy bitsy tiny lines or really building up your cat eye – basically gives you all the control you need to get your liquid liner just right. The ONE downside is that it’s hard to build up the colour after its dried, so if you’re newer at a liquid liner, maybe its not right for you. I’ve heard that Stila has a liner that is also grand and doesn’t have this drying problem – one problem, I haven’t tried it so I can’t give you my word! Brightside is that whichever you end up going with, you’re getting a cruelty free product. 🙂
5. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder – Ok. This product is uh… tres expensive… but I had to include it because it’s my FAVOURITE! If you’re in the market for a glowy, poreless, fine-tuned, photoshop finish all over face powder THIS IS YOUR STUFF! That being said, it’s super expensive (at least for most people?? myself included) so make sure to try it out before you go all in! Find the right colour, and make sure it’s everything you want and more (it WILL BE!) before you take the plunge! If you want more info, head over to my specifically dedicated review of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder (in Luminous Light). AND: According to their own website, they’re cruelty free AND this product is vegan! Score and SCORE. e14
6. Urban Decay’s 24/7 Pencil Concealer – I love this concealer. I have chronic undereye circles and this concealer (in the shade FBI) was the FIRST concealer that was able to do a decent job of covering them up! It has a nice creamy consistency, is super pigmented but doesn’t sink into wrinkles or cracks under the eyes. Downside? You have to sharpen it pretty often so you are losing some product that way. Upside? cruuuuuelty free!
summer favs 16 x8
Go-To Hair Care Products
7. Ouai Curl Shampoo and Conditioner – Beware! We are leaving the makeup only zone and heading into hair care! Ouai hair products have been super hyped, probably because Ouai is headed by Kim K’s very own hair stylist and personal pal Jen Atkin. The Ouai curl shampoo and conditioner advertises that it enhances your hair’s natural curl. I have really mixed hair texture, it’s quite freezy and has more of a beach wave to it (add in a few kinky curls) BUT when I use the curl shampoo the curls are super soft and smooth and glossy! Yes, yes, yes! I would strongly recommend this to anyone with actual curly hair, and I’m going to test out some of their other types once I run out! I should add – it also smells like a dream. And you guessed it! Ouai is also cruelty free. Would also recommend trying out their dry-shampoo, I haven’t tried it myself but it seems to be everyone’s go-to right now!
8. Drybar’s Hot Toddy Heat and UV Protectant – Heat and UV Protectant is a must for anyone blow-drying, straightening, or curling their hair on the regular. I tried this product out as a sample, because after all the heat protectants I’ve used, my hair still falls apart if I apply heat two days in a row (queue eye roll). Upside? This product actually works AND it smells wonderful! Actually – probably smell it in store before you buy it, because smells aren’t for everyone! If you and your hair have been on the hunt for a solid heat protectant, especially if you’ll be in the sun a lot this summer (lucky you!) this is one to pick up! AND you’ll be happy to know a quick google search has told me that they are in fact cruelty free.
Go-To Skin Care Products
9. Clinique’s Turnaround Revitalising Serum – This is another product I tried as a sample (though I think it was from HBC…. awk). Anyways, I wasn’t expecting much from this because I usually find that more skincare products = more skincare problems. Man. I could not have been more wrong. I have never had as lush skin as I had every morning after I used this. My skin was so soft and so clear. 10/10, if you have the money for it, try it. Sad news: In Canada, Clinique is ‘cruelty free’ in a sense, but they also sell in countries where animal testing is required by law and as such they do test on animals.
10. Origins’ Clear Improvement Active Charcoal to Clear Pores Mask – THAT is one mouthful of a name. I tried this mask out in a set of three from Origins and it was a clear winner. Like I said, skincare and I don’t always have the best relationship, but this is one mask that always makes my skin feel smoother, softer, and cleaner. I only use it when my skin’s in particularly bad shape or in ‘problem areas’ but I’m never disappointed by the results. This is a good one to try if you’ve been wanting to try out a charcoal mask but don’t want to absolutely break the bank (and don’t want to risk it on something cheaper that could be hit or miss!). Sadly, just like Clinique Origins does not test on animals anywhere other than where it is required by law.
And that’s it! Those are my top 10 must-have products from Sephora, if you’ve been wanting to pop by the new store but weren’t sure what to pick up, hopefully I’ve given you a little inspiration!

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        • Yes! I have combo skin but it’s the best finishing touch and doesn’t sink into dry spots – if you’re looking for something really illuminating I use Dior’s Glow Maximizing Primer (mix a tinsy bit in with foundation) in the winter when I’ve got super dry skin! It’s pricey but a little goes a looooooong way 🙂

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