geekiviews: bamjamz sleep and lounge wear

bamjamz sleep and lounge wear Sweet Dreamz
bamjamz Sweet Dreamz print

bamjamz send me a tank top in the Sweet Dreamz print from their new line of sleep/lounge wear for review. The line consists of tanks, tunics, shorts, leggings, tshirts and pants. I was interested because bamjamz is Toronto based and they use bamboo fabric. I’m a big fan of bamboo.

bamjamzâ„¢ is the latest concept from GUATS Soft Goodsâ„¢ founders Brad Rudin and Adrian Kraizel, that has redefined the concept of “pyjamas” through a fun, sexy and adventurous concept designed to fit the lifestyle of the modern woman – urban, active and spiritual. Made from the softest, coziest bamboo stretch blend fabric, bamjamzâ„¢ delivers a new dimension in natural comfort and performance. This remarkable sustainable and easy to care for fabric breathes, regulates temperature, wicks moisture, controls odour and is hypoallergenic. Sourced from organic and FSC certified bamboo, bamjamzâ„¢ is an all-Canadian collection, having been created in Toronto, designed by Vancouver’s Carol Fergusson and manufactured in Vancouver, with fabric knitted in Montreal.

Bamboo is a soft fabric and it’s one of the reasons why I like it so much. I’ve never slept in bamboo so I expected the experience to be like my usual tshirt and sweatpants routine. It’s true the bamboo regulates temperature. This was the first thing I noticed after the first sleep. In the winter I’m either too hot or too cold. I didn’t wake up cold and sweaty with bamjamz, I really liked this about the garment. The small fit perfect too and then I washed it. I should have hanged it to dry but I threw it into the dryer and it shrunk a bit. I did want to see how the tank would stand up to wash and dry cycles. The tank was just as soft.

bamjamz sleep and lounge wear Bella Donna
bamjamz Bella Donna print

The only complaint I have is the Sweet Dreamz print. I reminds me of Ed Hardy and it really turns me off.  Even the use of z instead of s irks me.  The fabric, fit and function are great but I wouldn’t purchase anything with this print on it. I wouldn’t wear it outside my home either.  Ed Hardy is quite popular so my dislike of this print might just be a case of  I’m not the target demo. Thankfully there is another print called Bella Donna which I think is much superior when compared.

bamjamz is available exclusively at Holt Renfrew. The Sweet Dreams tank is $74. Prices range from approx $65 – $100.

images: bamjamz.com

geekiviews: Lancome Absolue Precious Cells Advanced Regenerating and Replenishing Cream and Genifique Eye Youth Activating Eye Concentrate

I’ve been using the two Lancome skincare products I received from L’Oreal Canada religiously since I returned from India. The products have ridiculously long names, Absolue Precious Cells Advanced Regenerating and Replenishing Cream and Genifique Eye Youth Activating Eye Concentrate. I wonder about the names of products are created at beauty companies. not only do these products have ridiculously long names, they have big media kits also. The Absolue Precious Cells media kit was the largest I’ve seen for one product.

Lancome Lancome Absolue Precious Cells Advanced Regenerating and Replenishing Cream

Absolue Precious Cells is a skincare product geared for the woman in her 50s which uses a proprietary formula to “restore the stem cell environment and re-trigger the skin’s self-regenerative potential.” The media kit talks provides background information on epidermal stem cells. Lancome uses adult skin stem cells for anyone that is concerned. The results of Lancome’s quest to find the perfect combination of ingredients that create an atmosphere that allows epidermal skin stem cells to regenerate is detailed in the media kit. It’s fairly scientific for a media kit, I was a bit surprised to see graphs and detailed clinical study results. Studies with small sample groups can say a lot, the proof would be in the application.

Lancome Genifique Eye Youth Activating Eye Concentrate

The Genifique Eye Youth Activating Eye Concentrate media kit wasn’t large at all. Instead of stem cells, Genifique targets genes. I’m sure there is a large media kit of this product available somewhere as it formula can “revive gene activity and stimulate production of the proteins of youth.” Genifique Eye Youth Activating Eye Concentrate is targeted to all skin ages.

I’ve used Guinon, Swissline, Dermalogica and Care by Stella McCartney for extended periods of time. Of those lines I really liked Care before trying Lancome. The Lancome duo are the best moisturizer and eye cream products I have ever tried. I should note that I’m using Dermalogica cleanser, scrub and mask products as well.

I’m a fan of the texture of both products. The moistuerizing cream looks heavy and rich but doesn’t have that affect on the face; it’s very light. The eye cream looks as light as it feels. After months of using the products I can say that my skin is smoother and softer. It’s actually the smoothest I can ever remember it being. I’m really amazed with that fact. My skin just feels and looks good to me. Wrinkles aren’t something I’m worried about so I can’t say if these products have any affect on their appearance. I noticed that I had less blemishes using these products which is something I’m always worried about with new skin products.

I don’t spend a lot of money on makeup but I do spend on skincare. Genifique Eye Youth Activating Eye Concentrate ($80/15ml) and Absolue Precious Cells Advanced Regenerating and Replenishing Cream ($170/50ml) are available at Lancome counters across Canada.

EDIT (Jan 26, 2009): You can purchase the Genifique Eye Youth Activating Eye Concentrateicon and the Absolue Precious Cells Advanced Regenerating and Replenishing Creamicon online at Lancome.ca.

images: macys.com

geekiviews: Jean Leggings by Joe’s Jeans


Jean Leggings by Joe's Jeans

I received a package containing a pair of Zip Ankle Jean Legging in Black by Joe’s Jeans from Holt Renfrew PR just before Christmas. Jean Leggings were never something I would have tried before this package arrived. I hate to say it, I’ve drunk the koolaid, I like them.

Jean Leggings by Joe's Jeans

When I pulled them out of the magenta bag, they looked a little small. I’ve come to realize that you need to buy them smaller than you think. They are denim and do stretch a bit. They are comfortable, it was the first thing that surprised me. They are like wearing non-denim leggings. The fabric is stretchy and soft. The zippers on the side make it easy to put on and remove.
Jean Leggings by Joe's Jeans

I checked out the stash at Holt’s. They have a ton of different styles included distressed denim, acid wash and  tie dye. The price range is $116 – $140. The pair I have are $128. I thought it was hilarious that the distressed denim ones cost $140 even though from a production standpoint I can understand.

I hate the term jeggings and you’ll never hear me use it.  It makes me angry.

geekiviews: Test Driving Shu Uemura False Eyelashes

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I went to the Toronto Meets Tokyo Shu Uemura event at Holt Renfrew a couple weekends ago. I was treated to a make up application that included Shu Uemura lashes. I was going to find out why these lashes are so raved about.

TORONTO MEETS TOKYO shu uemura will come to life this Saturday at Holt Renfrew; our principal makeup artist Taca Ozawa will be there to complete artistic makeup for the women who dare to try! Lashes application will be offered, as well as sketches done by a Japanese Manga Artist. The event will take place in the centre court at Holt Renfrew, with models dressed in kimonos and made up with artistic makeup.

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Taca Ozawa wasn’t my makeup artist. Stupid me didn’t ask/remember her name because I loved what she did. I chose something pretty simple for lashes. The Luxe Black style were huge but not over the top. I didn’t feel like feathers or sparkles at the time.

Luxe Black Shu Uemura False Eyelashes
Luxe Black Shu Uemura False Eyelashes

Inspired by the mink false eyelashes custom-ordered by celebrities, this synthetic version features a criss-crossed design to provide the most voluminous lashes. Thicker at the roots, it tapers at the tips for luscious-looking lashes with a defined eyeline. May be worn at full-length for intensity; trim to half-length for an extra lift to the outer corners of the eyes.

Shu Uemura

You can see the glue in these pictures as there were taken right after the application. The glue dried clear by the time I left for the amazing Christmas party that evening. The makeup was pretty simple: blush, eyes, light foundation for sparkle, and nude lip.

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I kinda like the nude lip and I picked up the lip stick and gloss that made it possible (Rouge Unimited BG958 and Gloss Unlimited BR750S).  The lashes were durable.  I was worried about losing them to the wind on the walk over to the party.  They stayed in place and remained that way until I peeled them off at the end of the night. You don’t forget you are wearing them but they look amazing.  Not too over the top looking straight on however, the side view is ridiculous.

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I’m told they are reusable so I’m going to have to attempt application at home.  If you buy Shu Uemura lashes from Holt Renfrew it includes free application.

EDIT (Dec 22, 2009): I forgot to say thank you to Isabelle from L’Oreal Canada who made this story possible with the complementary eyelashes.

geekiviews: Nippies by Bristols 6

Nippies by Bristols 6

I received a package containing Nippies by Bristols 6 of various styles from rock-it promotions the other day. Nippies are exactly what you think they are, nipple covers. A few years ago, I had tried a couple brands but never liked the result which was puckering. I decided to give these a shot because maybe someone improved on what was happening then. I was right. Bristol 6 has made some nice ones.

The first time I wore a pair of plain black heart shaped Nippies. I decided to leave the black lace heart ones at home. You couldn’t see them in the dress. I was more worrying about having a wardrobe malfunction with my one shouldered dress. Proof is in the photo as I wore them to Bloor Street Entertains. I totally forgot I was wearing them and there was no puckering.

 Take More Photos BSE

I also received some silver star shaped Nippies. One was a matte finish and the other was sparkly. I tried the matte finish ones and I liked these better than the heart shaped ones.

The final product was Nippies Nautral an ultra thin silicone nipple cover. It’s apparently “paparazzi proof” because it doesn’t reflect light through clothing. There are two versions one with adhesive and one without. I was trying out the one without. Body head is used to keep it in place. They actually stayed in place too. I wasn’t dancing so I can’t say anything about their usefulness in those types of situations. It would have been nice to receive the darker nipple cover to better match my skin tone. I don’t know if they are paparazzi proof either, I wasn’t taking pictures.

Nippies by Bristols 6

There are a number of styles of Nippies. Some more descreet, others for being exposed. There are shapes to please/cover anyone like butterflies, hearts and stars. There are the neutral colours but many bright and metallics options. There’s leopard print for you fans.

You can get Nippies by Bristols 6 ($14 – $21) at Secrets from your Sister (560 Bloor Street West and 2501 Yonge Street).

image: takemorephotos.com

geekiviews: A Single Man by Tom Ford

A Single Man by Tom Ford

So, I saw A Single Man last night. I’m not going to go into a huge review of the movie but I liked it overall. Tom Ford fans obviously will be flocking to see it. It does seem like a long Tom Ford commercial, not that it’s a bad thing necessarily.

I was really curious to see Tom Ford’s debut. I wanted to see the expression of his aesthetic on film. The movie is shot beautifully. Tom does have a great eye for directing. However, I do think he could use an editor big time. Some shots were a little tedious and a few snips would have been beneficial. A friend of mine actually left halfway through the movie because she felt it was more about the imagery than the story. I can see her point, but every time the movie started to seem tedious, that is exactly when Tom would bring some humour into the situation. I really enjoyed that snap back to reality and it kept me from feeling “New Moon” about the movie.

The movie is beautiful and depressing as all hell. The choices of ending aren’t hard to establish from the beginning but half the fun is the reveal of Tom Ford’s choice of ending. Colin Firth does an amazing job. He deserves an oscar nod for this and I imagine he’ll get it.

Oh, did I mention the hot men in this movie.

image: imdb.com

geekiviews: Lancome Ôscillation Powerbooster

Lancome Ôscillation Powerbooster

Someone asked me if my eyelashes were fake on Saturday at Shinan’s Boldface Names Party. I knew I had to get my but in gear and post about the Lancome Ôscillation Powerbooster. It’s a godsend.

My lovely friends at L’Oreal Canada send me a sample of Lancome Ôscillation Powerbooster. I’m not a fan of primers in general. My Double Extend Beauty Tube experience didn’t change my mind about primers either.  However, a primer based on Ôscillation technology had me instantly interested. I’m a big, big fan of Ôscillation by Lancôme. I was excited about a primer with the same type of application. The idea of primer amplifying the already amazing effect of the mascara AMAZING.

The combo of the Ôscillation powerbooster and mascara is amazing. My lashes are thicker and longer. I usually get a comment or two about how long and curved my lashes are when I use them together. I also use the powerbooster as a primer for my Benefit Badgal Plum mascara. The plum colour pops more with the primer on.  It was a staple colour in India.

The first ever vibrating booster from Lancôme to promote natural lash growth. Improves lash surface condition for visibly stronger, denser and longer lashes. A unique step in your beauty routine to instantly amplify the power of every mascara

I received a lot of literature about the technology behind the Lancome Ôscillation Powerbooster.

Lancôme can exclusively reveal an all-new technique: a groundbreaking complex – Crescentiaâ„¢ – associated with vibration to stimulate lashes at their base, promote their natural growth*, and maximise the make-up results of any mascara.

A lash-product premiere: Lancôme’s Research Laboratories have integrated Madecassosside, a Centella Asiatica extract used in anti-hair loss products, within their formulation complex. Combined with Arginine, renowned for its ability to boost micro-circulation, Madecassosside works to re-densify lash fibres. Ôscillation Powerbooster thus not only promotes natural lash growth, but also strengthens lashes so as to avoid premature lash loss. With each passing day, lashes are visibly amplified, becoming stronger, longer, thicker, denser and more resilient.

The Ôscillation Powerbooster formula works in perfect harmony with the applicator’s vibrations so as to act like a massage at the very base of the lash fringe, thus helping boost micro-circulation and achieve a unique make-up result.

By offering this unique combination of an exclusive Madecassosside-based formula, Ôscillation Powerbooster lives up to its promise of providing visibly denser, longer and stronger lashes, day after day…

I can’t speak to any of these claims and to be honest they don’t matter to me. I got my validation on Saturday. If my lashes look so big they could be fake, I’m very, very happy.

Ôscillation Powerbooster is $39 and available at all Lancôme counters and Shopper’s Drug Mark

geekiviews: OVO by Cirque du Soleil

OVO by Cirque du Soleil

Thanks to Alison from Cossette I was given a set of four tickets to the new Cirque du Soleil production, OVO. A pair of tickets were for me and guest and the other pair were for a reader contest. I decided to do a quick twitter contest to decide the three winners that would attend the show with me. It was pretty successful and I might incorporate more twitter contests in the future.

OVO is a headlong rush into a colourful ecosystem teeming with life, where insects work, eat, crawl, flutter, play, fight and look for love in a non-stop riot of energy and movement. The insects’ home is a world of biodiversity and beauty filled with noisy action and moments of quiet emotion.

When a mysterious egg appears in their midst, the insects are awestruck and intensely curious about this iconic object that represents the enigma and cycles of their lives.

It’s love at first sight when a gawky, quirky insect arrives in this bustling community and a fabulous ladybug catches his eye – and the feeling is mutual.

OVO is overflowing with contrasts. The hidden, secret world at our feet is revealed as tender and torrid, noisy and quiet, peaceful and chaotic. And as the sun rises on a bright new day the vibrant cycle of insect life begins anew.

200910_CirqueDuSoleilcostume

This was my first time at a Cirque du Soleil show. I’ve seen specials on TV but nothing in person, not even when I went to Vegas. I was very excited. The show was a lot of fun, exciting and breathtaking at times. The stunts were such feats of strength and flexibility. I was in awe of the raw power these people have. Oh to be strong and flexible, it’s very attractive. The costumes were pretty incredible and did the bug theme justice. The show was in two parts. The first part was pretty fast paced and there was a lot of different acts to see.

The 2nd half was a little slower paced and there was more story building than acts. The set design was incredible, at one point in the 2nd half a large mechanical flower hanging from the ceiling opened on stage. The most amazing thing about this was the flower scent that was pumped into the audience just prior to the mechanical one opening. It was a brilliant touch. The final act was mind blowing. My jaw was on the ground the whole time. It was an amazing job of coordination, strength and ability. I have never seen anything like this finale, it was so inventive. I understand now why the 2nd half was slower paced, they needed to rest.

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This act features some 20 artists running, jumping, and walking across – and straight up – an 8m vertical wall without artificial support. Power track and trampolines give them the speed, lift and momentum to take flight. Their athletic ability, physical strength and team coordination take care of the rest.

I thoroughly enjoyed this show. It really makes you think of all the work that goes into producing the show, from set design to all the practice that goes into making a flawless and safe show. It’s a different experience seeing it in the flesh than on TV, so much more exciting. I still can’t believe the things these people did.

OVO is playing till November 8, 2009. You can purchase tickets online or at the box office. I’ve chatted with Cirque du Soleil fans who say this is the best production yet. I can’t say that, but I can tell you it was an amazing show.

images: cirquedusoleil.com

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geekiviews: Flora by Gucci

I received the Flora by Gucci Eau du Toilette in a swag bag from an event. I can’t remember which one (If any friends out there remember what event, please comment!). I like floral based perfumes, so I thought I would give it a shot. Turns out I like it. It’s sweet smelling; a mixture of fruit and flowers at first. It finishes with a heavy base. I don’t normally like patchouli but it works for me in this combination. It’s a girl’s fragrance and nowhere near the androgynous zone. It’s very strong and you have to remember that when applying. I do find myself reaching for this perfume a lot in the morning.

Flora by Gucci Bottle

Flora’s olfactory pyramid is composed around the floral theme, with top notes of citrus and peony, a heart of rose and osmanthus — a Chinese flower with a distinct floral fruit and leather aroma — and sandalwood and patchouli on the base. Giannini and the P&G fragrance team developed the scent with Firmenich.

This is Gucci’s second perfume geared to the younger customer. I always love to read about inspirations.  I thought the perfume and the ads were beautiful.  I love the long black and white silk chiffon gown.

Flora by Gucci Ad Campaign with Abbey Lee

 

Turning to the archived Flora print for inspiration for the scent’s concept came naturally to Giannini. First used on a Gucci scarf made for Princess Grace in 1966, Flora was also utilized on many different Gucci apparel and accessory items — some of which Giannini’s mother wore.

“I was in love with the idea of a floral fragrance, and having the idea of naming the perfume Flora, everything was consequential. I wanted to give Flora a new freshness, so I decided to keep the same floral pattern but make it not so literal with all 25 colors, but black and white, more graphic and correct for the project,” said Giannini…

To design Flora’s hexagon-shaped clear glass flacon, Giannini recalled the architectural lines of the Gucci by Gucci bottle. Giannini also chose to accent the juice a champagne color and incorporated another of the Gucci motifs in the small bamboo gold tassels trimming the ends of the black ribbon bow tied around the flacon’s neck.

The Gucci website says the font used to write Flora on the bottle is from the script of Guccio Gucci’s signature. The commercial by Chris Cunningham is very cool.

The black-and-white Flora print is featured on the scent’s packaging, but Giannini also printed it onto a butterflylike long silk chiffon gown worn by Australian model Abbey Lee in the scent’s advertising campaign. Shot by Chris Cunningham in a cornfield in Latvia, Lee is depicted in the middle of more than 40,000 silk flowers moving in tempo with the wind to the tune of an original remix of Donna Summer’s “I Feel Love.” Inez & Vinoodh photographed Flora’s print advertising visuals.

And her’s the making of Flora commercial video for kicks.

I like Flora more than the Givenchy Hot Couture Eau du Toilette I received in a swag bag last year. Swag bags are the only reason I started wearing perfume again. I went years without it. I like Viktor & Rolf’s Flowerbomb the best. I think Hot Couture, Flowerbomb and Flora are similar enough to make that kind of comparison.

All quotes are from WWD: Gucci Fashions a Flirtatious Fragrance
images: wwd.com

geekiviews: Equmen Compression Clothing

Equmen Compression Clothing

So, I was shopping with a male friend who decided to buy an Equmen Core Precision Undershirt. It’s goes by the male girdle when people are being snarky. The buzz about these types of products has increased in the last year and I was dying to get access to a user of the product.

Regular readers know I’m a fan of shapewear. It’s not about losing a lot of inches, but smoothing to leave clean lines. I had a feeling that the men’s version is similar in principle. I learned a bit more about the marketing from the website. There were three things the Men of the World need that Equmen delivers according to the website.

The weight angle:

I WANT TO LOOK AND FEEL SLIMMER
Look and feel more fit with style. Equmen’s CORE PRECISION UNDERSHIRT will help to trim and tone your physique for a more tailored look.

  • Streamlines Torso. Targeted compression wraps around core to trim stomach and smooth love handles.
  • Straightens Posture. Pulls the shoulders back to deliver a taller, more streamlined, confident appearance.
  • Visibly Sculpts. Body response fabric enhances muscle tone.
  • Improves the Fit of Clothes. Classic styling and immediate slimming effect improves clothing fit, from business to casual wear.

Of course they gotta get the golf in here somehow:

I WANT TO IMPROVE MY GOLF GAME
Correct posture and a strong core play a vital roll in golf. The CORE PRECISION UNDERSHIRT can assist golfers at any level by providing essential bio-mechanical support for peak performance from the course to the range.

  • Improves posture Correct posture in golf creates an athletic setup and optimal swing angle, allowing for balanced, powerful and consistent ball striking.
  • Stabilizes core Supports a solid base, helping to transfer energy from the centre of the body out to the limbs more effectively as you rotate through the axis.
  • Reduces fatigue Targeted compression helps you maintain form from start to finish.
  • Regulates body temperature Ventilated, moisture-wicking fabric keeps you comfortable throughout play.

The fashion/beauty angle:

SHARPEN YOUR STYLE WITH THE CORE PRECISION UNDERSHIRT
Discover the only sport-inspired undershirt that will dramatically improve how your clothes fit for a more tailored, polished look:

  • Improves posture
  • Visibly streamlines and slims
  • Enhances energy
  • Controls temperature and moisture
  • Immediately feel enhanced confidence from the moment you put it on. Your suit will fit better. Your appearance will sharpen.

Up your game in the job market today.

Equmen Compression Clothing

I think this garment will be as ubiquitous as Spanx is now. It will happen, give it time. I informed my friend during his purchase that I wanted updates on the garment and it’s performance. In exchange for his privacy I have some first hand accounts of what the Equmen compression clothing is like. My source bought the Core Precision Undershirt in black. He is a medium size. He wears a lot of suits so I was very interested in how the fit would change with the undershirt on and a dress shirt.

His initial test fit was a vest that had become a little to tight recently. I observed him with the vest on before wearing the undershirt and the results afterwards. The vest was looser with the undershirt on, he did lose some inches. He mentioned that the garment sucked everything in. He mentioned that getting of the shirt was a little bit of trouble.

I checked in with him a few weeks later and he was a new convert. He added the sleeveless version of the undershirt to his wardrobe. He mentions improved posture and better fitting clothing as major benefits. He wears the undershirt under dress shirts and sweaters and the tank under tshirts. The undershirt is better for posture than the tank but the tank is more comfortable. He mentioned that after a short period of adjustment they are comfortable to wear all day.

Equmen is available in Canada at Holt Renfrew and Topdrawers.com.

Quotes and images from Equmen.com

geekiviews: PunkMedics, Vegan Skincare with Edge

PunkMedics, Vegan Skincare with Edge

I review the odd skincare or beauty product on the site, so it was nice to get pitched from a Canadian based company. The thing that makes PunkMedics different is that all it’s product are vegan. They carry a range of products from skincare, lipcare, piercing & tattoo care and even roadrash care. PunkMedics is also an sustainable company and you can read about their practices on the website.

PunkMedics is a Canadian based company that manufactures, wholesales and retails a fun line of vegan skin care products with edge. Our products are made of natural plant and botanical ingredients from organic sources. They are 100% vegan (contain no animal by-products) and not tested on animals. They are free from parabens, sulphates, petroleum by-products and GMO materials.

I first heard of Toronto based PunkMedics through twitter. Owner, Badur Ramji, offered to send me the Vegan Sample Pack which I used on my FDJ press junket trip. It contained a Body Wash, Conditioning Shampoo, Leave in Conditioner, Facial Cleanser and Body Lotion. The only thing I didn’t try out was the Leave in Conditioner. Short hair really has no need for leave in conditioner.

All the products I tried were top notch and performed to my satisfaction. The facial cleanser and body wash were both gentle to the skin but effective in cleaning. They weren’t excessively drying either. The body lotion was a good moisturizer and keep my skin hydrated throughout the day. I really like the idea of Conditioning Shampoo. I don’t have much hair most of the time and when it does it longer I don’t want to shampoo and condition.

What I love most about PunkMedics products is that they are unscented. I’m sure we all have had issues with horribly scented skincare products. PunkMedics gives you the choice, you can go unscented or you can add your own essential oils. I think this is a great idea. I wish more companies would offer unscented version of their products. Better yet, make all products unscented and leave the business of fragrance to the perfumers.

PunkMedics can be purchased on the website or various places across Canada and the US.

geekiviews: Lancôme Paris Perfecting and Setting Mineral Powder

Lancôme Paris Perfecting and Setting Mineral Powdericon

Lancôme Paris Perfecting and Setting Mineral Powder

My friends at Lancôme Canada sent me two of the latest additions to their makeup line, Skin-Transforming Mineral Powder Foundation and Perfecting and Setting Mineral Powder.

Ageless Minérale, the brand’s first brightening mineral foundation that brushes away the signs of aging. Ageless Minérale includes White Sapphire Complex, the newest innovation from the Lancôme Laboratories. The complex is comprised of a special combination of ingredients including Bismuth Oxychloride, Mica, Alumina, Aloe and Vitamin E. Working in conjunction, these ingredients help blur wrinkles, cover imperfections and visibly erase pores and lines. The SPF 21 keeps skin protected from the sun’s harmful rays.

The ultra-fine loose Mineral Powder Foundation can be used alone or with the Setting And Perfecting Mineral Powder, which gently absorbs excess oil and further minimizes imperfections for a shine-free, soft-focus finish. Talc-free and never cakey, the powders wear beautifully for hours without irritating the skin. The modern packaging features a sliding cap ensuring an easy and clean application. Used with the ultra luxurious Powder Foundation Brush, the powder effortlessly fuses with the skin with a velvety soft touch. Made of 100 percent synthetic bristles designed to work in conjunction with the product, this revolutionary brush is one of the highest quality synthetic mineral brushes on the market.

I didn’t get a chance to try the Skin-Transforming Mineral Powder Foundation because the sample wasn’t for my complexion. I would have liked to try out just because of the SPF protection, but like most make up products that I acquire it’s never for my complexion.

I was able to use the Perfecting and Setting Mineral Powder, it was translucent. It wasn’t something that I would put on in the morning, but I would use in a similar fashion to blotting paper. It was perfect when I didn’t have time to prep between work and an event. Perfecting and Setting Mineral Powder would take the shine away and give my face a more matte look. The powder didn’t irritate my skin either, which is always concerns me. Some products makes my skin breakout and I’m very cautious with skincare products. Currently I’m using Care by Stella McCartney, but I also like Dermalogica. As for the brush, I couldn’t tell you if it’s revolutionary or not. It gets the product on my face and distributes it’s evenly and that’s enough for me.

Skin-Transforming Mineral Powder Foundation in 9 shades at $46/10g, Perfecting and Setting Mineral Powder, $41/10g and Mineral Powder Foundation Brush $30 are all available at Lancome.ca and a Lancôme beauty counter near you.

geekiviews: Vitaminwater

Vitaminwater

I know. You are thinking what does Vitaminwater have to do with fashion. It has nothing to do with fashion and it has everything to do with an interesting pitch I received from Environics. They sent me a couple of bottle of Vitaminwater. It’s the not first time I’ve tried it. I’m pretty indifferent to it as a beverage. Most times I’ve heard of anyone drinking it, they had been drinking heavily the night before.

So when I received the package from Environics I laughed out loud when I discovered their pitch, Vitaminwater, hangover cure. It’s perfect and about damn time. It’s a better tasting Gatorade which has been touted as a hangover remedy by many people I know. The pitch also included some Canadian hangover stats which I found amusing.

fast facts and stats

  • never say never? according to a recent survey, 47% of canadians won’t give up drinking even if it means we’ll be hugging the porcelain god the next day.
  • open bars and two-four (maybe it has something to do with the case of beer?): when asked what their top “hangover-inducing” celebrations are, Canadians ranked weddings (17%) and the may long weekend (11%) at the top of the list.
  • Ontarians love may long weekend: weddings and may long weekend are tied for second place (16%) when it comes to hangover inducing occasions.
  • pop the right pills: most Canadians do not consider taking vitamins before the drinking alcohol to curb hangover symptoms, yet some do rely on hangover pills to help them get through the morning after a night of heavy drinking.

making hangover history

  • The term “hangover” originated in the 19th century, meaning “unfinished business”. it wasn’t until 1904 when the expression was first linked to the meaning: “morning after-effect of drinking too much”
  • If ignored, hangover symptoms could last up to two or three days after alcohol was last consumed
  • Did you know that hangovers are historically associated with stock market crashes? bet this recession has caused some compounded headaches on the trading floor
  • Interesting hangover remedies include: sipping pickle juice, roast beef sandwiches, taking activated charcoal tablets, getting a stimulating scalp massage, eating raw cabbage and drinking a “hair of the dog” gin and hot sauce cocktail to bite the hangover back!
  • Hydration is the best hangover remedy, but only a quarter (24%) of Canadians put this into practice.. hydrating before, during and after drinking alcohol helps to dilute toxins entering the body, reduce stomach irritation and replenish lost fluids

Take what you will of the Vitaminwater hangover cure. I have used it in place of Gatorade and it has done the trick. I’ve also had people tell me that Vitaminwater goes well with Vodka.

image: vitaminwatercanada.ca

geekiviews: Cosabella Never Say Never Thongs

Cosabella Never Say Never Thongs

At the Innovators’ Ball I managed to get a gift box of Never Say Never thongs by Cosabella from one of the dancers. The gift box had 4 different coloured thongs in it. I was very pleased with myself and all I had to do was dance for them.

Prior to this stroke of luck, I bought 2 pairs of Cosabelle Soire Lowrider Thongs. I heard things about them being amazing and that people swear by them, yadda, yadda. The Soire’s were okay. I wasn’t raving about them and I wasn’t blown away either.

However, the Never Say Never thongs are the most comfortable thong I’ve ever worn. I love it when you forget your are wearing a piece of clothing. That is how these thongs felt. I’m impressed with the quality of the material and stitching. The range of colours are a treat too. They are a little pricier than most but I’ve found they hold up excellent after a trip through the washer and dryer.

image: takemorephotos.com

geekiviews: Nikon S230

Nikon S230

Strategic Ampersand provided me with a Nikon S230 to evaluate for two weeks. I’m never really pleased with the performance of point and shoot cameras but it’s the cruel bargain I have made with myself. A digital SLR is just too big to carry around to events and that trumps any idea I have about owning one. I like something small and compact. I use a Pentax right now and I have a bit of a love hate relationship with it. I hate it more than my old Pentax. I broke my old Pentax but we had a great relationship. I was able to take consistently good pictures with the camera and I haven’t been able to replicate that feeling with the new Pentax. I was hoping the Nikon S230 might return me to those carefree days of great photos.

The big claim to fame for the S230 is the 3 inch touch screen. I’m usually not a touch screen fan but I was curious to see what the technology was like. Some of the other features include:

  • Choice of colours
  • 10.0 megapixel resolution
  • 3x zoom
  • Electronic VR image stabilization
  • 3-in. touch screen high-resolution LCD
  • ISO 2000 capability
  • VR Image
  • Stabilization
  • Scene Auto Selector
  • Motion Detection
  • Smart Portrait System
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A great photo with the S230

There are a lot of features on this camera that I wouldn’t use and didn’t. There are some limited photo editing capabilities like the In-Camera Red-Eye Fix or the Paint functions. I do my photo editing in Photoshop and I don’t think I’d ever use those features on a camera. I tend to stay away from the preset features on cameras and stick to a customized setup.

The touch screen interface wasn’t bad. It was a bit slow at times moving scrolling through photos. It has an iPhone like experience for viewing photos. The shutter speed was much faster than my Pentax and I enjoyed the increased response time. The camera itself is light and compact. Playing with the autofocus features was interesting. This is where Nikon did a good job of integrating the touch screen with features. Using your fingers you can move the focus to where you need or increase the size of the autofocus area. That was the neatest feature of the camera.

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A bad photo with the S230

Overall, I’m not a fan of the camera. It really boils down to the fact that I can’t stand the screen. The material used to make the screen durable and scratch resistant is also what makes taking pictures with this camera unbearable. It’s never clear enough to see if the picture turned out. When I take a photo with my Pentax I know exactly if the picture turned out or not. The display is crystal clear and there is no issues determining image quality.

The Nikon doesn’t allow that understandably. The images are always slightly grainy and I was never sure if it was the photo or the screen. It was only until I uploaded the photos to my computer did I find out their quality, which is way too late. When the pictures turned out they were amazing and when they didn’t they were bad. I’m sure this has more to do with me than the camera, but I just couldn’t take the pictures I wanted with the S230 that well. Day 3 of |FAT| I used the S230 to take my runway shots and I wasn’t happy with them at all. The camera doesn’t work for taking runway shots at all. No good for my line of work.

If I had the opportunity to evaluate a Nikon camera again I would definitely try another model as I wasn’t happy with the touch screen. The Nikon S230 retails for $239.95. Not a bad price.

geekiviews: J.R. Watkins Lip Tint

J.R. Watkins Lip Tint

My good friends at Brill Communications also send me some J.R. Watkins Lip Tint.

Basically J.R. Watkins Lip Tint is their famous lip balm infused with colour. The result is something that feels and applies like a lip balm but gives your lips a nice shade. Each tint is formulated with 100% natural beeswax and Shea butter. There are four shades to choose from: Tickled Pink, Strike-a-rose, Simply Mauve-lous and Berry Charming. Tickled Pink and Strike-a-rose were much too pink for my complexion and I stuck with the Simply Mauve-lous and Berry Charming.

I really like that the Lip Tint acts like a lip balm and lipstick. I like a hint of colour on my lips and don’t wear much lipstick because I find it’s too much for me. You can layer the colour on as much as you like with the Lip Tint and I like that. The fact that it’s a lip balm means that your lips are keep moist and aren’t drying out. Available for $5.99 at various retailers in the city.

geekiviews: Nailene Nail Accessories

My good friends at Brill Communications decided to send me some samples of Nailene.

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I couldn’t bring myself to use them and this is the first geekiviews post I’m making without trying the product. I have to admit, I’ve always been a little frightened of artificial nails. I put it out there on twitter that I was afraid of artificial nails and had a couple people reply back with horror stories. I also read the instructions and the removal of the nails which involves soaking in acetone. I really didn’t want to go through it.

The artificial nails themselves are not tacky. They are in the french manicure style which is always classic and not obnoxious. I will overlook the nail art that was included with the Toenail set. I had no idea there was artificial toenails too.

A friend of mine, who is way more into this beauty stuff, told me that Nailene is the best brand of at home artificial nail kits. She had these tips for creating the perfect set of nails.

  • Size all the nails first and lay them out in order of how you’d put them on.
  • Moisturize your hands and cuticles like crazy then wash all the oily stuff off and dry your hands.
  • Use an orange stick to push back the cuticles as much as possible.
  • You need to lightly file the surface of your nails before applying glue – it removes the oil
  • Start with your non-dominant hand
  • I prefer to put the glue directly on my nail rather than the fake nail – best to put more glue on that not enough – the extra will dry and peel off your skin after a day.
  • Hold the nail on tight for a good minute to push out air bubbles.
  • Once you have done all your nails, then put a little extra glue underneath each of your nails – it makes them stronger.
  • ALWAYS carry the glue in your purse for little mishaps – or extra nails in case of a “pop-off”.
  • And, oh taking them off is pain! soaking them in acetone nail polish usually makes them dissolve – not good for your finger tips, and you have to be patient. Worst thing is pulling them off when they are not ready. OUCH! But worth it for a good week or so for some lovely finger tips.

She tried to convince me to try them out but didn’t succeed. I can freely give her endorsement of the product because I know she knows what she is talking about. I’m just chicken shit.

Tell me your experiences with artificial nails in the comments.

geekiviews: LG TE365 Neon Mobile Phone

LG TE365 Neon Mobile Phone

During LG Fashion Week I had the opportunity to test out one of LG’s new mobile phones the LG TE365 Neon. I love playing with gadgets so I accepted.

A full QWERTY keypad for fast texting, quick access to your favourite social network sites, and threaded SMS keeps you in touch wherever and whenever you want. It also comes with a 2.0MP camera, a music player that supports 4GB of music, and a trim design that easily slips into any pocket or purse.

  • Dimensions :101.6 x 50.8 x 16.8mm
  • Weight :08 grams (3.65oz)
  • Battery Life Talk Time :Up to 4 hours, Standby Time :Up to 250 hours
  • Camera :2.0 megapixel Digital Camera
  • Messaging Type :QWERTY keypad for text entry
  • Ringer Type :64-chord polyphonic ringer
  • Voice Recording and Memo :Yes
  • Scheduler/Calendar :Yes

I’m a Blackberry user so going to a plain messaging phone is always a step down for me. However, the phone itself is compact and small. The slide out keyboard felt pretty sturdy and not flimsy. The screen was a good size and the display rotated when sliding out the keypad. It also has a touch screen interface for dialing the phone. I found the mixture of interfaces a little strange. I took a picture with the camera and managed to email it to myself using Rogers picture messaging service. The image, as you can see, is very small. My Blackberry has a 2.0MP camera and allows for larger image sizes and resolutions.

Photo taken with LG TE365 Neon Mobile Phone

I don’t have much to say about Rogers service as I wasn’t able to do anything. I couldn’t surf the web or use any social networking sites. There was no memory in the phone so I couldn’t tell you about the mp3 player capability. I did notice that things I would take for granted on my Blackberry (which has an unlimited data plan through Telus Mobility). Rogers system seems directed to getting you to pay for more things, ringtones, videos, etc.

geekiviews: High Voltage Tattoo

 High Voltage Tattoo

I don’t know what went through my head when I agreed to review the new Kat Von D book High Voltage Tattoo. I don’t really know much about her besides the fact that she was on reality tv and is a tattoo artist. I didn’t watch her shows, they aren’t my thing. Typical rock/stripper chick is what I labelled her prior to reading this book. I’ve discovered that she’s a talented artist. I’ve discovered that I kinda like her.

The book features a short bio, history of her career in the tattoo world, a tattoo map of her body and representative examples of the genre using examples of her work on her clients and friends.

Some of my favourite things in the book are:

  • The presentation of the book. It fits in perfectly with her style down to the font.
  • Her tattoo map is pretty detailed and impressive it hard for me to imagine getting one tattoo let alone the number of ones Kat has to warrent such an in depth analysis.
  • She sets the record straight on tattto culture and dispells some myths still floating around.
  • The section about portraits was really well done. It did a very good job of giving the reader some insight into the emotional connection evoked by the portait tattoo.
  • I wish the section about tools was a little bigger. The pictures were intriguing as her tools are custom made. There is a whole industry around custom tools, I guess that subject could be a book in it’s own right.

Overall it was a surprisinly pleasant read. It changed my neutral opnion of Kat Von D to a positive one. She’s a smart cookie with many diverse interests I didn’t expect to find out. I also learned a bit about tattoing

geekiviews: The Arc Mouse by Microsoft

The nerd in me is all excited about the Arcâ„¢ Mouse I received Microsoft and Highroad Communications. It’s product that combines fashion/style and technology that would be fitting of a debut at LG Fashion Week.

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It’s an interesting departure for Microsoft; I don’t know them as a style conscious company on the level of LG or Apple. However, this mouse is making me change my mind. It’s lovely and I don’t usually say that about technology.

Features of the mouse include 2.4 GHz – 30 ft. Wireless Range, Folds For Portability, Micro-Transceiver snaps into the bottom of the mouse and the ambidextrous design makes it comfortable either way. It also has a little pouch for carrying.

I immediately plugged it into my work machine. It worked without having to install any software. I had my Eee PC out at lunch and it was plug and play with that. My Eee PC runs Linux and I didn’t have to install anything. I was so pleased. It opens up to become a fullsized mouse that is very comfortable to use.

The mouse has an estimated retail value of $69.95 but I’ve seen it at a local shop for $59.99.

geekiviews: Mineral Flowers skincare

Mineral Flowers skincare - Handcream and samples

I received a package containing Mineral Flowers skincare items from my friends at Brill Communications. Mineral Flowers is a link of skincare that incorporates minerals from The Dead Sea.

Mineral Flowers delivers an unmatched spa-like treatments in the comforts of your own home. Ingredients such as Calcium to strengthen cell membranes and relieve pain, Bromine which heals skin diseases and helps relieve psoriasis and Zinc that clears skin and is a key ingredient in the production of collagen.

Each product contains antioxidants such as green tea and ginkgo biloba, therapeutic essential oils and organic ingredients microalgae aka: seaweed and vitamin rich fruit and vegetable extracts; resulting in a pure way to pamper your skin, with every product paraben free, guaranteed.

There are two products a hand moisturizer and body & massage lotion. They come in five different scents: Lavender, Citrus Blossom, Jasmine, Chamomile and Almond Blossom. I’m a big fan of the Almond Blossom Citrus Blossom and Chamomile scents. They aren’t overpowering or sickly smelling. I wasn’t a fan of the Jasmine scent, it was too overpowering. There are some scents that don’t work with my chemistry and this was one of them.

The creams themselves are lovely. They are water based and not greasy. I like the hand cream a lot. It would be nice if they had a smaller version so it would be easy to carry in small purses. I can’t comment on it’s health claims but I’ve enjoyed using these products.

The hand cream is $6.99 and body lotion is $9.99 at The Bay. I would recommend staying away from anything Jasmine scented in the line.

geekiviews: Lancome Pink Irreverence Spring 2009

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Before the holiday break I was send a package that contained the new Lancome Pink Irreverence Spring 2009 collection. I really did squeal when I opened the package, black and pink OMG. This is the first collection with the new make-up Artistic Director, Aaron De Mey.

This collection is cantered on a radical duo of strong colours: pure fuchsia, in homage to the emblematic rose, and sparkling black, inspired by the volcanic sands of Piha Beach in New Zealand, from where Aaron De Mey originates.

“I love opposites and extremes, the clash of colours and textures”, explains Aaron De Mey. “I chose this vibrant fuchsia as a tribute to the Lancôme rose. As for Piha Black, apart from the black-sanded beaches where I grew up, this colour also echoes a multitude of references which have influenced my work: the punk culture of London in the 70s, the smoky eyes of Marlene Dietrich who created her own black by burning a cork …”

Price list from left to right in above photo:

  • Le Vernis – Piha Black $20 (Limited Edition)
  • Laque Liner -, Pure Black $29 (Limited Edition) and Piha Sparkle $29 (Limited Edition)
  • Color Fever Gloss – Piha Black $29 (Limited Edition)
  • Pink Punk and Black Palette – Irreverent Madame $52 (Limited Edition)
  • Laque Fever – Furious in Fuchsia $32 (Limited Edition) and Pink my Ride $32 (Limited Edition)

Lancome Pink Irreverence Spring 2009

Laque Fever
The fruit of six years of research, the Lancôme Laboratories have developed an exclusive formula for Laque Fever…Laque Fever is a concentrate of pure, vibrant and ultra-shine colour, which offers ultimate lasting hold for 6 hours. Concentrated in colour pigments, the Laque Fever formula smoothes lips and adorns them in pure colour, with perfect coverage. Rich in pearly pigments which vibrantly reflect the light, Laque Fever creates a unique multi-dimensional effect, for never-before-seen shine. Its fluid texture also ensures long-lasting comfort.

For an optimal make-up result and glide-on application, Lancôme has designed the Soft Sculpt high-definition applicator which also ensures impeccable lip contour definition…Feminine and delicate, Laque Fever’s fragrance opens with a fresh harmony of bergamot and lychee, carried by voluptuous middle notes of rose, raspberry and apple, rounded off with a luxurious wave of white musk and vanilla

I really do like the Laque Fever and the applicator. My favourite colour alone is Furious in Fuchsia. Pink my Ride is way too frosted pink for me to be wearing alone. The lip colour does stay on for a long time, but it is drying and I would use a gloss for it. The smell as pleasant as the description.

geekiviews: Diorshow Mascara

Diorshow Mascara

Diorshow Mascara

You might remember my last run in with blue mascara. I bought the Cargo stuff in April and I promptly threw it out in the fall. I was left without for a few months and decided to give the Diorshow Mascara in Blue Azure a shot. I had received a tester of some kind of Dior mascara at a fashion event and loved it.

geekiviews: Diorshow Mascara

Things I like about Diorshow

  • The colour. It’s a great blue that’s not too bright
  • The brush is massive
  • It’s waterproof
  • It doesn’t flake

Things I don’t like

  • It took 3 coats to achieve the look in the above picture
  • It wasn’t easy putting the mascara on. You really had to wiggle that brush to get the product on the lashes. I really want Ôscillation by Lancôme to come in blue.

Overall, I like the product and it produces quality results even though those results are difficult to achieve. If the Ôscillation comes out with Blue it’s all over for Diorshow; it lengthens and curls without the need of an eyelash curler.

geekiviews: Cromwell and Cruthers Shaving Oil

This edition of geekiviews features a guest blogger, The Grumpy Owl. He’s a guy and the Cromwell and Cruthers Shaving Oil is for men. So it made sense that he review it instead of me.

I hate oiling up my body. It’s the sort of the thing that one should have a person for. Preferably young, buxom and foreign. So, when Geekigirl gave me a plastic vial of Cromwell and Cruthers Shaving Oil, I viewed the product with some trepidation.

Oil is bad enough but shaving is worse. The last time I combined the two, I spent an entire weekend cleaning hair, blood and assorted perfumes from my sheets. It was not an experience I was looking to repeat.

But geekigirl quickly explained that I was to use this product to shave myself. Specifically, my face. While alone.

I might not like oil or shaving but I do love my face. So I decided to give this shaving oil a whirl. Having used it for the past few weeks, I now feel competent to review the stuff.

It’s pretty good.

At four dollars and fifty cents a vial, it’s reasonably priced. Certainly much cheaper than hiring a barber to shave your face and not much more expensive than a can of foam. Although it lacks the proto-erotic thrill of having a man stroke your throat with a razor, it smells quite nice and provides a close shave. It also lasts quite a long time.

But I wouldn’t expect anyone to believe mere words. After all, I’ve been bribed with a five dollar vial of shaving oil. A lot of bloggers come cheaper than that. So I’m providing you with photo evidence.

Ryan Oakley Before Using Cromwell And Cruthers Shaving Oil

Ryan Oakley Before Using Cromwell And Cruthers Shaving Oil

Ryan Oakley After Using Cromwell And Cruthers Shaving Oil

Ryan Oakley After Using Cromwell And Cruthers Shaving Oil

I expect you can draw your own conclusions from that.

Cromwell and Cruthers Shaving Oil (a Canadian Company) can be purchased at Shopper’s Drug Mart and PharmaPlus

geekiviews: Vera Wang Look

I went to the launch of Vera Wang’s new perfume, Look. It was sponsored by Fashion Magazine and held at Panorama. It was a fun event and I spent time with friends and enjoyed the view. That’s me in the picture at the bar. Yup, the mustard tights. Love them! The skirt was a present from the owner of Print Vintage. It was originally a halter top dress that was unwearable. She couldn’t sell it and gave it to me one day when I was buying a dress. I got my handy sewing friend Danielle (finalfashion.ca) to turn it into a skirt. It’s pretty kick ass.

There was a large ice sculpture display for the launch to show off the glass prism characteristics of the bottle. The ad campaign doesn’t bother me and that’s a very rare thing for perfume. Coty developed the fragrance. I’m by no means a perfume expert so I’ll let them describe it for you:

Look was created in cooperation with Firmenich. It introduces notes of mandarin, watery greens, litchi and golden deliches apple in the top notes. The heart incorporates lily, freesia and jasmine, while the base notes introduce a rhapsody of sweet vanilla, musk, oak moss and patchouli. (source)

The perfume itself isn’t heavy at all. It has a very light scent that isn’t repugnant. I actually like it even though it’s not something I would normally gravitate too. Flowerbomb and Hot Couture are some of my favs right now.