Crabtree & Evelyn Holiday 2018

Crabtree & Evelyn Canada Going Out of Business (Plus: Song de Chine and Lavender & Espresso)

One of the very first perfumes I ever bought for myself was actually a blind-buy (which, if you know me at all, is hardly surprising!), Crabtree & Evelyn’s Song de Chine. It is long-discontinued, and to be very honest, I don’t even remember why I bought it! The marketing blurb must have sounded very compelling to me, and I have to say that when it arrived in the mail, I was quite excited to give it a try. As luck would have it, I loved Song de Chine very much—it was a soft floral with tea and vaguely aquatic notes—and the thrill of the blind-buy has not left me since.

From Crabtree & Evelyn’s press release in 1997:

CRABTREE & EVELYN SONG DE CHINE SCENTED BATH AND BODY LINE marks the company’s first major launch since it was purchased by Malaysia-based Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad. The five-SKU range, which Crabtree is promoting as the “essence of tranquillity,” is available now in Crabtree & Evelyn doors in the U.S. Crabtree & Evelyn Song de Chine bowed in the U.K. and Canada in June.

I’m doing some perfume and makeup organizing at the moment and don’t particularly feel like tossing everything up in the air and digging around for my old bottle, but I found this photo online for the same item I had…I feel like I might have thrown out the box, which is sad as it’s kind of pretty, isn’t it?

Image: Sovrana Parfums

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Yardley, The Collection 2018 EDTs eau de toilette: Daisy Sapphire, Poppy Diamond, Rosie Ruby, Flora Jade, Lilac Amethyst, at Shoppers Drug Mart

New Release: Yardley — The Collection, Eaux de Toilette

Stalwart English brand Yardley is one of those old-timey drugstore brands that you know about but only in the way that your parents or grandparents used to keep their lavender soaps in the bathroom. I never bothered much with them until this year, when I was looking for something to add to my Shoppers Drug Mart shopping basket. I saw that Yardley’s Contemporary line of scented products were on sale, and since I’m a bit of a sucker for rose-scented anything (even the old-fashioned type! I love ’em) I popped an eau de toilette and a hand lotion into my order.

Yardley Contemporary Edition, Rose EDT

As luck would have it, they are lovely little scents at sub-CA$20 prices. The Rose lotion is an especially great deal, since it’s under CA$10 on sale, and the fragrance lasts nicely on skin!

But just last week, I happened to come upon a display in Shoppers Drug Mart for a new line of Yardley scents! In The Collection, each scent is designed for a particular “personality” and is inspired by a flower and gemstone pairing. Yardley worked with four perfumers for the five scents, including Juliette Karagueuzoglu (Coach, 21 by Costume National, Signorina by Salvatore Ferragamo) and Domitille Bertier (Flowerbomb by Viktor & Rolf, Midnight in Paris by Van Cleef & Arpels).

From Yardley:

A range of exquisite floral fragrances embodying the transformative power, beauty and allure of glittering gemstones and celebrating the opulence of British glamour. Yardley London are proud to present five new sparkling scents; Daisy Sapphire, Rosie Ruby, Poppy Diamond, Lilac Amethyst and Flora Jade.

Each with their own addictive characters, The Collection has been designed to reflect every personality. Discover which of these beautiful, explosive fragrances suits you.

The five new scents are:Read More »

Happy Halloween! More Horror Movies for Wimps, 2nd Edition & a Quickie Review: J. Del Pozo — Halloween EDT

Happy Halloween, everybody! We’re having a dreary, rainy day in Toronto today—I hope the rain lets up so everyone can have a great night trick-or-treating!

I spent most of last night sorting out Halloween loot bags (I got a roll of fruit Mentos for each bag! Man, I’d have loved trick-or-treating at my place when I was a kid.) and attaching a small toy to each bag. So today, I’m hurriedly writing out my Halloween post.

Tonight, after taking the kids out treating (well, Mr. Fivezero is handling that this year) and handing out the candy (that’s my job!), I hope to watch a scary movie, but more likely we’ll just watch an episode of The Good Place S3 or Babylon Berlin S1—neither of which is scary at all—and head to bed. It is, after all, a school night.

By the way, since I wrote that blog post about Horror Movies for Wimps, I’ve seen a couple more (not many; I’m not that brave!). Here are the 20 more of the best horror movies I’ve seen:

  1. It: Chapter One (2017). This is not a Horror Movie for Wimps, by the way. It’s properly scary. But as someone who grew up with the Tim Curry miniseries, I loved this new adaptation and am too excited for the sequel, which has already started shooting in Toronto and will star James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, and Bill Hader. I’ll miss the kid actors from the first movie—they were beyond excellent! OK, the rest of the movies are definitely Horror Movies for Wimps. You’re good to go, now. It: Chapter One (2017) movie poster
  2. What We Do In the Shadows (2014). A comedy about New Zealand vampire housemates, done mockumentary style. From the same guys who brought us Flight of the Conchords and, uh, Thor: Ragnarok. What We Do In the Shadows (2014) movie poster
  3. It Follows (2014). A really brilliantly executed indie horror movie. It really gets under your skin, but without loads of jump scares (there are a few) and too much gore (there is some). The sense of dread that builds up is incredible. It Follows (2014) movie poster
  4. Train to Busan (2016). Awesome zombie movie from South Korea. Just have to get past a bit of melodrama in the beginning; the rest is totally worth it. Brings something new to the zombie genre. Train to Busan (2016) movie poster
  5. A Quiet Place (2018). A lot more of a “fun” movie than I had anticipated, actually. It helps that real-life couple John Krasinski (who also co-wrote and directed) and Emily Blunt are eminently likable and you root for them from the start, even if they make some silly—but understandable given their situation—decisions. This is one I wish I’d seen in the cinema. A Quiet Place (2018) movie poster
  6. The Thing (1982). I actually saw the modern prequel first, The Thing (2011), and really enjoyed it. I love claustrophobic survival horror movies (Alien, The Descent, and so on) and this was done well, compared to many that are just paint-by-numbers. Anyway, I saw the original 1982 John Carpenter movie recently, and it’s funny that at the end, I thought, “Great movie! Not that original, though…” before immediately realizing that it’s because all those “similar” movies I’d seen had clearly been inspired by The Thing. The Thing (1982) movie poster
  7. Green Room (2015). This is way more suspenseful than it is scary, though it’s also very realistically gory and you’ll have to be able to handle that. Brilliant fun. Stars the late Anton Yelchin, Imogen Poots, and Sir Patrick Stewart as a skinhead. Green Room (2015) movie poster
  8. Crimson Peak (2015). A couple of jump scares but overall it’s just a fun period piece supernatural mystery romp. Mia Wasikowska, Tom Hiddleston, and Jessica Chastain ham it up in Guillermo del Toro’s movie. I didn’t love Chastain in this; if ever there was a role that called for a dose of Eva Green, this was it. I guess it may have been too much of a giveaway for the character, though. Crimson Peak (2015) movie poster
  9. Split (2016). I won’t spoil you but this is M. Night Shyamalan’s best movie for a very long time. I loved some of his early movies, especially Unbreakable; this is a return to fine form. Great performances from James McAvoy and Anya Taylor-Joy, as well. Split (2016) movie poster
  10. The Mist (2007). Somehow I missed this movie when it came out over ten years ago; it’s based on the Stephen King novel and directed by The Shawshank Redemption‘s Frank Darabont. What was I thinking?! Anyway, I’d recently watched the entirety of Netflix’s The Mist S1 (2017) miniseries (why did I do that to myself?) and thought I should watch the good version. It is better, for sure. The ending is much talked about—it’s different from the book’s ending and King himself has said he wishes he’d thought of it!—and I still don’t know whether I like it or not. The Mist (2007) movie poster
  11. 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016). I saw all the Cloverfield movies in one go. They’re only very loosely related; 10 Cloverfield Lane is the second one, and it was not originally intended to be part of the Cloverfield series, and I actually like it the best. (Not hard; the first is inspired but low budget and feels it, and the third is just a waste of time.) John Goodman is great as always, and I am very much a fan of Mary-Elizabeth Winstead in horror movies: she’s a perfect heroine. 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016) movie poster
    From here, I’m just adding movies I’d seen pre-2015, but they didn’t make it onto my last list:
  12. Jeepers Creepers (2001). Probably the creepiest of the lot, but it’s worth it. So weird, hilarious, and fun-scary.
  13. Daybreakers (2009).
  14. Dog Soldiers (2002).
  15. The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005).
  16. Ghost Ship (2002).
  17. Horns (2013).
  18. Oculus (2013).
  19. Resident Evil (2002).
  20. The Wicker Man (2006). This is not a good movie. It’s not intended to be a comedy, but it’s goddamn hilarious. Thank you, Nicolas Cage.

And now, onto the review!

Halloween is a long-running series of perfumes by J. del Pozo, a Spanish fashion designer. The original Halloween perfume was launched in 1997, and it has since spawned many flankers. I’ve never tried any of them, since I’ve never actually seen any in stores, so I recently thought to buy a mini of the original online, just to review it on Halloween!

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Too Cool for School Glam Rock Double Proof Brow in Ash Brown (02) via Tester Korea

Too Cool for School — Glam Rock Double Proof Brow in Ash Brown (02) Review

Apologies for the delay in reviewing the final Korean beauty product sent to me by one of my favorite Korean beauty online shops, Tester Korea: winter’s coming and the kids and I all got hit with a middlingly-bad bug, causing runny noses and phlegm-y throats. Ugh! We’re finally on the mend, now, and I’m personally thrilled because it means I can smell my perfume again!

So… I have reviewed my experience with Tester Korea in the past; they have a different selection of brands from a few others that I use, and their prices are very competitive. My favorite thing about them is you can request brands and products and they’ll try to get them in stock!

Today’s review is for Too Cool for School Glam Rock Double Proof Brow in Ash Brown (02).

My eyebrows are black, but also on the sparse side. To be quite honest, I tend to sort of leave them be; I’m not really keen on the very “done” brows that are in style these days, and kind of prefer the more natural look. This may mostly be due to my own laziness, though. Hehehe.

Only on occasion do I bother with filling them in with some grey brow powder… When I first started dating my now-husband in college—over twenty years ago, eep!—I literally never did anything with my brows. I mean, I wouldn’t even get strays, since I guess I kept pulling them out during high school, and eventually they never grew back. Anyway, he actually thought I plucked my eyebrows to within an inch of their lives, Marlene Dietrich-style (or did those stars actually pluck all the hairs and redraw the entire brow?). Nope! I just have pathetically sparse brows!

Marlene Dietrich
Well, my eyebrows aren’t that thin.
(I wonder what nail polish Marlene is wearing.)

These days, I normally use Clinique Brow Shaper in Charcoaled. I have usually found that if I use any kind of brown, it usually has too much red in it and ends up looking very odd against my skintone.

I was a little bit leery looking at the Too Cool for School’s Ash Brown shade, but eventually I figured that all those Korean ladies can’t be wrong! Luckily, I chose well and the Ash Brown works really nicely for my coloring, despite looking a bit too brown in the tube.

Too Cool for School Glam Rock Double Proof Brow in Ash Brown (02)

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The Face Shop Gelato Tint in Cherry Mousse (06) via Tester Korea

The Face Shop — Gelato Tint in Cherry Mousse (06) Review

Over the next week or so, I will be reviewing several Korean beauty products sent to me by one of my favorite Korean beauty online shops, Tester Korea. I have reviewed my experience with them in the past; they have a different selection of brands from a few others that I use, and their prices are very competitive. My favorite thing about them is you can request brands and products and they’ll try to get them in stock!

Today’s review is for The Face Shop Gelato Tint in Cherry Mousse (06). As with Mamonde, I haven’t tried too much of The Face Shop’s makeup products, so I was looking forward to trying this lip tint.

And, as I did with the Mamonde foundation, I think I chose the wrong color again! The Face Shop Gelato Tint comes most adorably packaged in a case that looks like a small ice cream cone! The screw-off cap is rubbery and looks like the ice cream part, with sprinkles on top. SO CUTE.

The Face Shop Gelato Tint in Cherry Mousse (06)

I chose the yellow one, since I’m fond of the color, and I didn’t particularly care for the other shades available (pinks, reds and oranges). I thought the yellow might have been a sort of sheer coral. Well, I should have found out that the yellow shade name is actually Cherry Mousse. So obviously, it is a bright freakin’ fuchsia! The brightest fuchsia in the six-shade lineup! And oh, by the way, literally none of the colors really align with the ice cream colors. Duh.

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Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid (21) via Tester Korea

Mamonde — Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid Review

Over the next week or so, I will be reviewing several Korean beauty products sent to me by one of my favorite Korean beauty online shops, Tester Korea. I have reviewed my experience with them in the past; they have a different selection of brands from a few others that I use, and their prices are very competitive. My favorite thing about them is you can request brands and products and they’ll try to get them in stock!

Today’s review is for Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid SPF34/PA++. I’ve been a fan of a couple of Mamonde’s skincare items, and I’m glad to be trying something from their makeup line for the first time.

Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid is a liquid foundation/BB cream that comes in a cushion compact, the form factor that started in South Korea and has become all the rage in the West over the last few years, as well.

Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid in 21

Personally, I think cushion compacts are good for travel and touch-ups, but otherwise I never use them. I don’t think you get very much bang for your buck: for example, this one contains 0.45 oz / 13 g, compared with standard liquid foundation bottles which typically contain more than twice that amount, around 1 oz / 30 mL. Secondly, I hesitate to use the included sponge too much, since you keep touching it to your face, back to the cushion, and so on. Not hygienic! At home, when I use a liquid foundation, I use clean hands or a clean makeup sponge, and never double-dip-dirty. The only reason I ever use a cushion compact is to have it on the go, since they’re so easy to just slip into a handbag—I just need to remember to wash the applicator sponge, and its tray in the compact, when I get home. Well, that, and they do come in very cute compacts, sometimes!

Mamonde Blossoming High Cover Cushion Perfect Liquid in 21

From Mamonde:

  • Makeup is flawless thanks to finer cover powder made with Fine Pixel Cover™ technology and the reflecting effect of the Volume Up Light Powder™
  • Glow and shine with the Hydro Coating LiquidCover™! Puff made of soft material makes makeup stay to the skin to look smooth and flawless!
  • Liquid foundation in an airtight package to retain its color!
    More convenient than foundation and more exquisite than cushion!
  • Hydro Coating Liquid™ developed from Preserved Flower Technology gives a glow and shine to the makeup, and the combination of film forming material and moisturizing ingredients form a barrier over the skin to give a shiny, hydrated-looking finish to the makeup.

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a;t fox Tea Toc Water Cream via Tester Korea

a;t fox — Tea Toc Water Cream Review

Over the next week or so, I will be reviewing several Korean beauty products sent to me by one of my favorite Korean beauty online shops, Tester Korea. I have reviewed my experience with them in the past; they have a different selection of brands from a few others that I use, and their prices are very competitive. My favorite thing about them is you can request brands and products and they’ll try to get them in stock!

Today’s review is for a;t fox‘s Tea Toc Water Cream. I’d never heard of this Korean brand before, but apparently they do have a presence in a couple of US-based CVS and UK-based Boots drugstores. The brand’s tagline is “afternoon tea time!” and many of their products include tea as a key ingredient.

a;t fox Tea Toc Water Cream

Tea Toc Water Cream is a lightweight, translucent green gel that claims to reduce sebum and moisturize the skin. It contains green tea (Camellia sinensis) as an active ingredient, as well as a veritable cornucopia of additional plant extracts such as Centella asiatica (of which I’m a fan), licorice, aloe, rosemary, and chamomile. I was slightly worried about the presence of rosemary extract, since I have had allergic reactions to other products containing it (although I cannot be sure rosemary was the culprit). Luckily, I have had no reactions to Tea Toc Water Cream. Either rosemary isn’t really an issue for my skin, or it’s not present in the right quantity (or perhaps form?) in this product.

The cream can be used as a normal facial moisturizer, or as a sleeping mask. The instructions advise using twice the amount for use as a sleeping mask.

a;t fox Tea Toc Water Cream

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