Happy Victoria Day! (Canada)

Happy Victoria Day! We Visited the Royal Ontario Museum (May 2017)

It’s Victoria Day weekend in Canada, and we took the kids out to the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), a first for them. I’ve posted my photos here if you’re interested!

This weekend, the ROM has a code (SAVE5, use it online or mention it at the museum) for $5 off their general admission or the Blue Whale special exhibit, so there’s still time if you want to go and check it out.

Sample photos:

Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), May 2017. Out of the Depths, The Blue Whale Story.
Vintage advertisments for products made from whales (margarine, soap, meat).
Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), May 2017. Out of the Depths, The Blue Whale Story.
Blue whale skeleton. I always love seeing the finger bones in the flippers.
Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), May 2017. Earth's Treasures Gallery.
Gemstone jewelry. Is this the ROM or Birks?
Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), May 2017. Earth's Treasures Gallery.
Okenite in a geode. Aren’t they cute?

Have a great day!

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Deciem, It’s Totally OK!

Just this morning I checked on the status of my two Deciem orders from late April, and they were still processing. A quick peek on their Twitter told me that they were waiting on pumps for the newly released Colour Foundations, so there would be a wait of about two weeks.

No biggie to me, as I know they’re a smaller company (and local—I don’t think their headquarters are too far from where I live), and I’m sure they’ve been inundated with orders! (Here’s my first order from earlier, less busy times!)

I kind of wish my non-Colours items would ship, but there’s nothing I ordered that I need right away.

This afternoon, I got an email from Deciem:

Hi ❤️

We are really emotional. We are working really hard. And we feel really helpless. We know you are waiting for your order of Colours. And nothing hurts us more than knowing how difficult it is to be waiting. Everyone seems to be congratulating us on the success of Colours but we are instead so severely disappointed in ourselves that you are still waiting.

We have always manufactured all of our products in house, which almost no one does. This very direction has allowed us to be disruptive in beauty and offer value to you, our amazing customer, follower and supporter. However, this in-house effort is also what has placed us under tremendous pressure to fulfill the extreme volume of orders for Colours when it launched. We started with a waiting list of 25,000 people but ended up with orders for more than 250,000 units in just a week. We are producing Colours around the clock and we are fulfilling orders around the clock. We estimated it would take us 10-15 days to get through these orders but it’s taking a bit longer despite every single one of us placing our heart and soul into what matters the most: your happiness.

We are working very hard. We are shipping thousands of orders daily. Your order will be ready very soon. And in November, we will be moving to a new facility, representing our fourth move in four years. This new facility will increase our capacity by 450% initially and by even more shortly after. It is unacceptable to us for you to wait and we know that we will soon be in a place where we can serve you very promptly, the only way you should be served.

A very helpless but very genuine hug,

DECIEM

I’m so glad they’ve updated their customers on the delay, and hope they’ll be back on track as soon as possible! It’s also very cool that they’ll be moving to a new facility this fall. More Deciem for everybody is a great thing. 😁

fivezero's Annabelle haulage (April 2017)

Haulage! Annabelle (April 2017)

I don’t have a proper Throwback Thursday post for today, but I do have an Annabelle Cosmetics haul, which semi-counts as a retro thing for me!

For those who don’t know, Annabelle is a Canadian drugstore brand owned by Groupe Marcelle, based in Lacine, Québec, Canada. The same company owns:

  • Lise Watier (high end; acquired in 2016, making Groupe Marcelle the largest Canadian beauty company. I wonder if this is why Lise Watier haven’t been running their semi-annual clearance sales!)
  • Marcelle (L’Oréal-priced)
  • Annabelle (Maybelline-priced)
  • CW Beggs & Sons (a men’s skincare line launched in 2015, named for the man who originally founded Marcelle in Chicago in 1874—and here I thought Marcelle had always been Canadian! It turns out Marcelle entered the Canadian market in 1949, and became a Canadian company in 1973.)

Back in the olden days (though not so far back as 1973, ha!), I owned an Annabelle powder blush (very nice) and a couple of Annabelle eyeshadow singles. Gleam was one, a shimmery vanilla, and I think there was maybe a lavender, too. They were so nice for Canadian-made drugstore products, and depotted, they would fit into MAC palettes, as well.

I should dig up the blush and shadows to show you, but for now, I present my latest Annabelle haul! It’s a two-part haul, as I bought the mascara from Shoppers Drug Mart and the eyeshadows directly from Annabelle’s official site, when they ran a great deal at Easter: 40% off all eye makeup!

All prices are in CA$.

  • Big Show Waterproof Mascara in Black [$3.99 / reg. $9.95]
  • Eyeshadow Single in Brown Frost (Satin) [$3.57 / reg. $5.95]
  • Eyeshadow Single in Germanium (Chrome) [$5.37 / reg. $8.95]
  • Eyeshadow Single in Mulberry (Satin) [$3.57 / reg. $5.95]
  • Eyeshadow Single in Over the Taupe (Metallic) [$3.57 / reg. $5.95]
  • Eyeshadow Single in Rose Gold (Chrome)[$5.37 / reg. $8.95]
  • Skinny Palette in Summer Purple [$5.97 / reg. $9.95]

I tracked down the Big Show Waterproof Mascara (my nearby Shopper Drug Mart locations didn’t carry the waterproof Annabelle mascaras), thanks to a glowing review from Jodi (A Brash Attitude). I also have stick straight lashes, so I’m really looking forward to trying it! I got it on sale for CA$3.99.

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Sale Alert! eBates Canada Spring Sale (15% Cash Back at Selected Stores)

‘Cause we need more sales, right?!

eBates Canada (referral link) is running a spring sale in which a whole lotta stores get a whopping 15% cash back. This deal is for today (May 10, 2017) only.

The beauty-related sites are:

  • Ahava
  • Aveda
  • Barneys New York
  • Biotherm
  • The Body Shop
  • Carol’s Daughter
  • Clarisonic
  • Forever 21
  • Kiehl’s
  • Lancôme
  • Macy’s
  • Murad
  • philosophy
  • Shopbop
  • Urban Decay
  • Yves Rocher
  • Yves Saint Laurent Beauté

Other fun sites:

  • Alex and Ani
  • Baublebar
  • Club Monaco
  • Cole Haan
  • Columbia Sportswear
  • eBags
  • Figleaves
  • Joe Fresh (they don’t have their makeup online, AFAIK)
  • La Senza
  • Links of London
  • Matt & Nat
  • Merrell
  • Michael Kors
  • Modcloth
  • Rebecca Taylor
  • 7 for All Mankind
  • Sorel
  • Stuart Weitzman
  • Teavana

See the full list here.

Happy shopping!

 

Crawford Street Rose Geranium 2-in-1 Soothing Cleanser

Crawford Street — Rose Geranium 2-In-1 Soothing Cleanser Review

I discovered Toronto-based Crawford Street last year, with their Grapefruit Mint Salt Scrub that I really enjoyed.

Since then, I’ve bought two more products from them, the Rose Geranium Toner and the Rose Geranium 2-in-1 Soothing Cleanser, which is the product I’m reviewing today.

From Crawford Street:

This cleanser will remove make up and gently clean your skin at the same time.

Made with anti-inflammatory castor oil to calm and soothes the skin. It also helps reduce acne and rosacea.  The enzymes in the Papaya extract are gently exfoliating,  and promote new cell formation. Vitamin C , a powerful anti-oxidant, will leave your skin softer and smoother. Rose Geranium essential oil is balancing and astringent.

For: All skin-types

Shelf Life: 6-9 months. Store in a cool dry place, out of direct sunlight.

Initially, I did like this cleanser quite a lot! Even though I have dry skin, I normally have a hard time liking cream cleansers like this one. I always feel like they’re bad at cleaning (forget removing makeup!) and leave my skin feeling dirty or greasy, or both.

The Rose Geranium 2-in-1 Cleanser is a lovely, light cream that actually does a reasonably job of cleaning the skin! I mean, no, it doesn’t do a great job of removing makeup (what cream cleanser does? I wish they’d stop claiming to!), so you’ll have to remove that first.

I am currently using cleansing oils/balms to remove makeup, so I used this cream cleanser as a morning cleanser, and again at night as a second cleanser to remove any remnants of cleansing oil.

As it is a cream cleanser, you have the option of wiping it off with a cotton ball or rinsing it off with water; I’m totally a rinse person, and this cleanser rinses off very well and doesn’t leave a film on my skin.

This cleanser also smells lovely: it’s an herbal, wet rose, like an English garden. All the scents come from actual plant extracts, which brings me to the issue I had with this cleanser.

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Shoppers Drug Mart Spend Your Points Event (April 29-30, 2017)

Sale Alert: Shoppers Drug Mart’s Spend Your Points Event (April 29–30, 2017)

This weekend (April 29–30, 2017), Canada’s Shoppers Drug Mart is offering a Spend Your Points Event!

Spend the following Optimum Points and receive:

  • 50,000 points for $100 off (extra $15)
  • 95,000 points for $200 off (extra $30)

This offer is also available online at SDM’s beautyBOUTIQUE. Don’t forget ebates.ca (referral link)!

Search for your closest Shoppers Drug Mart beautyBOUTIQUE by brand here.

Here are links to some of my past Optimum Points hauls:

I have a lot of points accumulated, and decided I don’t want to hang on to too many at once (should Loblaw decide to change the Optimum Points system). I redeemed twice for $200! Whee! Optimum Points get racked up a lot faster if you load the personalized coupons every week.

Here’s my haul. I was good and didn’t get any lipstick! But I did get nail polish (of course), eyeshadow, lipgloss (doesn’t count!), and foundation. I only had to pay the excess beyond $200 ($1 on the first order, $2 on the second!) and 13% HST (sales tax) on the full amounts—and of course I redeemed 2 x 95k Optimum Points. I also received a bonus 10k points for spending $100 on Clinique skincare. I think it’s nice that they let you get the bonuses even when you’re just redeeming points and not “really” spending money.

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fivezero's jolse haulage (April 2017), COSrX, Holika Holika

Haulage! Korean Shops (And New Canadian Shipping Problems)

I’ve been getting a little obsessed with the state of my skin lately, and while it’s been super fun ordering Deciem products (items from The Ordinary, Hylamide, and NIOD lines are now in my possession!), this also meant that I hit up the online Korean beauty shops, too.

Little did I know that with my most recent Jolse order, I snuck in just before a Canadian shipping issue!

In the past, I pretty much stuck to Cosmetic Love (referral link):

  • The site is super easy to navigate, and generally I don’t have any issues with it. I personally find it nicer to look at than some of the more popular Korean beauty sites. The photos also tend to be slightly better.
  • Brand and product selection seem good to me, though there have been a couple brands I’ve been vaguely interested in and had to look for elsewhere.
  • CS is good, though I’ve never had to do more than get a quick response about a minor issue.
  • Prices are a bit higher than some other sites, but shipping is always free so I like not having to tally up the final cost. I really hate when the shipping charge differs depending on the size of your order (is it by weight? by price? gah!) and then I have to shift products in and out of my cart to get the max stuff for my money. The price is less of an issue to me since I just shop their sales, anyway. With free shipping, I can order, like, $20 worth of stuff during a sale and not have to think about spending $100+ to get free/cheaper shipping elsewhere.
  • Delivery has never been a problem for me. Yes, it takes a few weeks, and maybe a bit longer, but that’s not the store’s fault. They always ship very promptly and it’s Canadian customs that’s the hold-up. Luckily, I’ve never gotten dinged by customs, but I keep my Korean orders to around US$40 max. (Technically, orders totalling CA$20 or less are duty-exempt.)
  • They give a useful amount of samples—though it’s usually just handfuls of those single-use pouches of Tony Moly Tomatox Magic Massage Pack and Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum. I don’t think I will ever need to buy those two products.

But last year, I finally branched out a bit and ordered one test product from Jolse via Amazon (some Innisfree sheet masks, which I haven’t even bothered to use because shortly afterward, I decided I’m not really a fan of sheet masks).

Innisfree It's Real Facial Sheet Masks (15 pc)

Innisfree It’s Real Facial Sheet Masks (15 pc) (US$19.08)

Then last month, I placed a trial order from Jolse proper (and I forgot to use the $3 sign-up discount, gah!):

  • COSRX Galactomyces 95 Whitening Power Essence (US$16)
  • Holika Holika gudetama LAZY&JOY Ceramide Capsule Cream (US$18.68)
  • Holika Holika Naked Face Illuminating Powder (US$11.88)

They sent a lot of different samples, which is awesome, but on the other hand, it’s a little useless to test a skincare product with just a single one-use sample. Cosmetic Love, by comparison, send about 10 of a product sample, but I almost always get the same two products so it’s not great that way, either.

Here are the samples I received:

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