Tag Archives: Fair-Skin

Sephora Visit & My Mini Brow Makeover (Toronto Shopping Part 1)

Goodies from the Eaton's Centre Sephora

Goodies from the Eaton’s Centre Sephora

At the end of January I was off to Toronto for the annual national library conference. While I’m there, I always try to make time to do some of my favourites and sometimes try out new things too (like going to the Bite Lip Lab). I always make time to go to the Eaton’s Centre and hit the Sephora and MAC because there is no Sephora or MAC near where I live. I had a great trip to Sephora this year! Continue reading


Filed under Eyes, Face, Favourites, Foundation & Primer, Reviews

MAC Lustre Lipstick Collection Swatched

MAC lustre lipsticks

My MAC “lustre” finish lipsticks

Hello everyone! I thought I’d share my favourite MAC lipsticks with you today. My favourite finish of all the MAC lipsticks is the lustre, and I have amassed quite a few of them. I find that the lustre lipsticks just don’t get enough love, so I wanted to do a post featuring all of the shades I have, along with some swatches, and let you know what my favourites are. I’ve only included lustres I have from the permanent collection, nothing LE.

Lustre is one of MAC’s 10 (I think?) different lipstick finishes. The lustres are described by MAC as “Demi-sheer with wet-look lustre finish. Very slick. Makes lips look soft,smooth, ultra-moist.” My lips tend to be dry and I find the lustres very moisturizing and light and comfortable to wear, almost like a lip balm. I like that they have some shine and I suppose because I am more fair skinned, I also like that they aren’t super pigmented because that makes them easier to work with. Many of these I can swipe on without a mirror. Continue reading


Filed under Favourites, Lips, Lipstick

New Smashbox Color Correcting Sticks

Smashbox Color Correcting Sticks
Hey everyone! I hope everyone is enjoying spring. Where I live in Canada its still pretty cold and actually SNOWED here twice this week 😦 The fiance, a Folklore Professor, says the folktale about May snow is that if you apply  it to your face it “cures” freckles. I haven’t tried it. I think freckles are super cute anyhow!

As someone who is very pale, I am just starting to dip my toes (or beauty blender sponge!) into the land of contouring, highlighting, and colour correcting. This isn’t always easy, as many of these products don’t seem to be geared towards fair skin gals. I was really excited to try out the new Smashbox Color Correcting Sticks, which claimed to enable me to “seamlessly achieve complexion perfection.” Who doesn’t want that? 🙂 Continue reading


Filed under Face, Reviews

A Great Way to Start the Day: MAC Fresh Brew

MAC Fresh Brew lustre lipstick
Hi everyone! Just a little ode to one of my newest favourite MAC lipsticks. I ordered Fresh Brew online, mostly because it was a brown-toned lustre lipstick (my absolute favourite finish) and who isn’t totally obsessed with the 1990s brown lip at the moment, am I right? Described as “creamed coffee”, Fresh Brew is a true brown on fair skin (not too warm and not too cool) with a beautiful, semi-sheer, slightly glossy finish. I think on darker skin tones this would be a beautiful nude lipstick. Continue reading


Filed under Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

Strobing for Fair Skin: Good Highlighters (& one miss)

Highlighters for pale skin

Can strobing work on fair skin?

“Strobing” or basically highlighting seems to be the latest makeup trend. When you have very pale skin, finding a foundation light enough is a challenge, let alone finding something even lighter than your skin that could be considered a “highlight” (and don’t even get me started on contouring/bronzing, that’s a whole other post). Nevertheless, pale, I-live-in-a-Northern-climate, Nerdy Librarian Girl set out on a mission to find a highlighter for fair skin to partake of this strobing trend! Continue reading


Filed under Bronzers & Highlighters, Face, Reviews

Did Sephora Samples Make me Want to Buy it or Skip it? (Part 3: Mascaras & Lip Products)

For part 3 of my Did Samples Make me Want to Buy it or Skip it? I’m reviewing mascara and lip product samples I received. These were some really good samples!

 bareMinerals Pop of Passion Lip Oil-Balm in Plumberry Pop

Plumberry Pop

 bareMinerals Pop of Passion Lip Oil-Balm Plumberry Pop swatch

Plumberry Pop

bareMinerals Pop of Passion Lip Oil-Balm ($20 CAD): I was totally excited to try this 100 point sample of the new tinted “lip oil-balm” from bareMinerals. I really like tinted lip balms. There are so many things I love about this, I don’t know where to begin! I love the packaging. Its super cute and the colour of the packaging matches the shade, which I always find handy. The Pop of Passion lip-oil balms come in 8 different shades. I’m really enjoying the shade I received, Plumberry Pop, a pinky-red, but I want to try out all of the other shades now! This oil-balm applies a wash of colour combined with the light, hydrating feel of a lip balm. It feels moisturizing on the lips, but also leaves behind a super long-lasting stain. It reminds me of the Benefit Hydrating Tinted Lip Balm (my beloved rose coloured Benebalm is in my empties) or the Maybelline Baby Lips in Cherry Me (but without the sweet fruity scent). If you are into tinted lip balms, I think you’ll love this! Verdict: Buy it. Continue reading


Filed under Eyes, Lips, Mascara, Reviews

The New MUFE Ultra HD Concealer

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Concealer
Make Up For Ever has come out with a new HD under eye concealer! The only foundation I use is the MUFE Ultra HD Invisible Cover which I’ve reviewed  and also included in my 2015 Favourites. MUFE has shades light enough for very pale skin (I use the lightest foundation shade, Y205 Alabaster). I couldn’t wait to try the MUFE Ultra HD Concealer. It comes in only 5 shades, but lucky for me, the lightest, Y21 is super light! It is the lightest concealer that I have ever seen from any brand. If you’re a pale-skinned girl and have had a hard time finding a light enough concealer, I would definitely check this one out. Continue reading


Filed under Concealer, Face, Reviews

My New Favourite Setting Powder!

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder

I had been seeing the Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder on favourites lists everywhere. My skin is on the drier side, so I don’t generally use a ton of powder, except on my chin and around my nose where I can tend to get a little shiny throughout the day. I find that my Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation doesn’t require much powdering to set and I like leaving the luminous finish. I’ve been loving the MAC Mineralized Skinfinish Natural in Light, which made my 2015 Favourites. When I ran out, I wanted something to replace it faster than I knew a MAC order would take to arrive. MAC can take three weeks or more to get to me, whereas the new Canadian Sephora shipping is crazy fast – about 2-3 days! Continue reading


Filed under Face, Favourites, Reviews

NYX New High Definition Blushes Review

NYX High Definition Blushes
Who doesn’t love NYX, am I right? My favourite NYX product is their powder blushes, and I was a bit concerned that they seem to have discontinued their familiar blush line and come out with a new formula and packaging. I went to the recently launched NYX Canada website to order some of the new High Definition Blushes along with some other items. You can read about my disastrous shipping/customer service experience with the site if you’d like. The four blushes I ordered survived and I really wanted to review them (although I cannot recommend ordering them from nyxcosmetics.ca).

The original line of NYX blushes came in 29 shades. The new HD blushes have 24 available shades, and only two of the original shade names remain (Amber and Taupe) although I’m not sure if they are still the same colour. Sadly there is no Angel, one of my all time favourite blushes. Continue reading


Filed under Cheeks, Face, Reviews

In love with Lovelorn

MAC Lovelorn lipstick
I was already in love with MAC’s lustre finish lipsticks, but my latest find, MAC Lovelorn lipstick is totally swoon-inducing. As someone with cool, pink undertones in my skin and quite a lot of pink in my lips, I find pink lipsticks tricky. Its hard for me to find pinks that don’t look totally crazy on me, with something like MAC’s Angel being one of the few exceptions.

Lovelorn is cryptically described as an “emotive blue-pink” (um, what colour is “emotive”?). It’s basically a light, cool-toned pink with slightly mauvey undertones that looks very natural on fair skin, which is really hard to find. Continue reading


Filed under Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

Finally, Too Faced Love Flush, the Adorablest Blush Ever!

Too Faced Love Flush blush

The packaging is even my favourite colour!

The Too Faced Love Flush Long-Lasting 16-Hour Blush has been on my wishlist ever since I first laid eyes on the mind-blowingly cute packaging. Not having a Sephora anywhere near me, was the only thing that stopped me from immediately going there and buying the entire collection! When I placed a Sephora order last month I added Baby Love to my cart. When the blush first arrived, I could not even. I mean, observe the cuteness! Continue reading


Filed under Cheeks, Face, Reviews

Top 5 MAC Blushes & Giveaway! – CLOSED

top five MAC blushes for fair skin
Hey there! I’m back. Its been a crazy busy month with work and I’ve had very little time for anything, especially blogging. The fall is the busiest time of the year for me. I thought I’d get back in the swing of things with a giveaway! I absolutely love MAC blushes and I thought I’d share my favourite MAC blushes for fair skin and at the end of my post I’ll reveal which of those 5 blushes I will be giving away to a subscriber! Continue reading


Filed under Cheeks, Face, Favourites, Giveaways

The New MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation

The new reformulated Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation

The newly reformulated Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation

I can’t believe its been ages since I last posted! I had an unexpected work situation occur: I had to take over a project in a sort of emergency capacity to get it back on track and it has seriously taken up all of my time for the past couple of weeks. Today was the start of the new semester at my university and even though I was busy with orientation events for new faculty and students all day and am exhausted, I really wanted to do a post and get back in the swing of things. I have several new products that I’ve been using that I’ve been dying to write about.

If you’re familiar with my blog, you know that I’m head over heels in love with the MUFE HD Foundation (read about how its the best foundation for fair skin imo). Its the only liquid foundation I’ve found that is light enough for me, that doesn’t oxidize, and also doesn’t irritate my skin or break me out. I tried a lot of foundations in my quest for a good liquid foundation as evidenced by my foundation graveyard. So imagine my horror to discover that my beloved foundation was *gasp* being reformulated!

New Make Up For Ever Ultra formula VS original HD Invisible Cover Foundation

How does the new “ultra” formula compare to my beloved HD Foundation?

Turns out, I shouldn’t have worried. The new Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation is just as even more awesome as the original. I didn’t notice a huge difference in the formula, although MUFE claims the new formula “appears more invisible, comfortable, and natural-looking than ever before.” I think it was just so good to begin with that its difficult to notice a huge improvement. It’s still long wearing and sheer and natural looking, letting your own skin come through but also provides good coverage.

For me the two differences are 1. even cuter, and more high-end looking packaging, and 2. improved shade range. I really like the new silver band around the bottle versus the original black. I also liked the addition of the little MUFE lips holding a makeup brush logo on the cap.

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation packaging

Some cute touches on the new packaging!

I think the most impressive improvement is that the Ultra HD foundation comes in even more shades; an astonishing 40 shades! (compared to 26 in the original formula). I had been using the lightest shade in the original line, N110 Pink Porcelain, which I still found slightly too pink-toned for me. In the new line, the equivalent of 110 is R220, but there is an even lighter shade (which looks to be about 2-3 shades lighter than Pink Porcelain), Y205 Alabaster. You can see the difference in the swatches below:

Make Up For Ever original HD foundation formula N110 compared to new Ultra HD formula Y205 "alabaster"

Left: Original formula in N110 Right: New formula in Y205 (both the lightest shades available)

Alabaster is an even better match for me! So the new Ultra HD Foundation gets a huge thumbs up from me. If you have a difficult time finding a foundation light enough for your skin tone, definitely check this out. I think its nice that they include a sample of the Step 1 Skin Equalizer Hydrating Primer with the foundation as well.

Make Up for Ever Step 1 Skin Equalizer Hydrating Primer

A sample of their Step 1 Skin Equalizer Hydrating Primer is included

The Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation is $50 CAD.

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Face, Favourites, Foundation & Primer, Reviews

Maybelline The Blushed Nudes Palette

Maybelline The Blushed Nudes eye shadow palette

Maybelline The Blushed Nudes

I need another eyeshadow palette like I need a hole in the head, but when I was waiting for a prescription refill at my Lawtons Drugstore, I spied the display of Maybelline eye shadow palettes. I’ve already posted about how much I liked the original Maybelline The Nudes palette. I ended up leaving with the new The Blushed Nudes palette. The pretty pink and rosy-toned neutrals were just too  much to resist!

Maybelline The Blushed Nudes eye shadow palette

Beautiful rosy neutrals

Its easy to see why reviewers are comparing this palette to the Urban Decay Naked 3, which is my fav out of the Naked palettes. Its certainly not a dupe for the Naked 3 though. There aren’t any exact dupes in either palette, but I would say they are similar palettes. If you like the rose-gold trend, you’ll probably like the shades in The Blushed Nudes palette. There are some great pinks, mauves, and rose-gold type of shades plus some cool-toned neutrals. Here it is compared to The Nudes palette:

Maybelline The Blushed Nudes versus original The Nudes palette

The Blushed Nudes VS original The Nudes palette

There are a few “duds” in The Blushed Nudes palette, like in the bottom row the first one on the left and the last two, which I find a bit chunky and a bit too glittery, but for the most part I think the quality of the shadows are the same as those in The Nudes palette. There are more shimmery shades in The Blushed Nudes (9 out of the 12) but the mattes they did include are excellent and I have used them with all of the eye looks I’ve done.

Maybelline The Blushed Nudes palette swatches

The Blushed Nudes swatches

I have created the prettiest neutral, everyday eye looks with this palette. Like The Nudes, with a primer I find these super easy to apply and blend, and they wear well all day without creasing. I like this palette as much as, if not maybe more than, The Nudes palette. Some reviewers have complained that they aren’t as pigmented as they’d like, but I find on my fair skin they show up very well and create subtle, wearable eye looks. I could understand if gals with darker skin tones find some of the shades too light.

I’m a fan of the Maybelline palettes and at $14.99 CAD for 12 shadows, they are a much better deal than the seriously over-priced and terrible L’oreal La Nudes palettes which cost twice as much (you can check out my review if you’d like).

I haven’t tried out Maybelline’s The Smokes palette yet. If anyone’s got that one please let me know if you think its worth getting.

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Eyes, Eyeshadow, Reviews

Brand Spotlight: #Annabelle Cosmetics Review

Annabelle Cosmetics eye shadows

Annabelle Cosmetics eye shadows

Annabelle is a Canadian drugstore brand based in Montreal that began in the 1960s. Most of their makeup products are actually made in Canada. I have already blogged about my love of the Annabelle lip liners, which are some of my favourite lip liners ever and very similar to the MAC lip liners. One of the things I like most about Annabelle is that their makeup has no scent or fragrance and is great for sensitive skin. I thought I’d do a brand spotlight to talk about some of the best Annabelle makeup products I’ve been trying out and also one that was a “miss” for me.

First up are the Annabelle eye shadows. This brand has quite an impressive selection for a drugstore brand as well as lots of good neutral shades (also hard to find at the drugstore). The Annabelle Quad Eyeshadow in Java Jive with the four shades Cream, Camel, Beige, & Brown is an awesome neutral palette.

Annabelle Quad eye shadow in Java Jive

Annabelle Quad eye shadow in Java Jive

The quad itself didn’t photograph well and all of the pics I took of it are showing as way too cool and purpley toned (sorry!), but the swatches, below, are more accurate.

swatches annabelle java jive quad

Java Jive quad: Cream, Camel, Beige, & Brown

None of the four shadows are overly shimmery. They just have a bit of sheen and the darkest Brown shade is pretty matte. I like using the Cream shade to blend out with and on my brow bone. Its very light which is perfect for my fair skin. I can do an eye look with just this quad alone.

Annabelle Trio eye shadow in Haute Chocolate

Annabelle Trio eye shadow in Haute Chocolate

The cool-toned neutral Trio Eyeshadow in Haute Chocolate was another awesome find!

swatches Haute Chocolate Trio

Haute Chocolate Trio

Both the quad and trio I tried are very long-wearing and don’t crease on me (I always use an eye shadow primer). There are 5 other quads and 9 other trios to choose from! My favourite though are the Annabelle Single Eyeshadows which totally remind me of the MAC eye shadows. These are made in Canada and come in 15 shades.

Annabelle Single Eye Shadows

Annabelle Single Eyeshadows look remarkably like the MAC eye shadows

I have three of these: #225 Ivory, Suedine, and #127 Brown Frost.

swatches annabelle Single Eyeshadows in #225 Ivory, Suedine, & #127 Brown Frost

Single Eyeshadows in #225 Ivory, Suedine, & #127 Brown Frost

Ivory is basically a dupe for MAC Brule. Suedine (french for “Suede”) is a gorgeous neutral taupey-brown, and Brown Frost is a good, medium, cool-toned brown, and both have the prettiest (non-shimmery) sheen. The Singles are so soft, easy to work with and long-wearing they perform like high-end eye shadows.

I was also brave and tried one of their TwistUp Retractable Eyeshadow Crayons. I don’t typically have much luck with creamy eye shadows, but the shade Taupe, a slightly metallic, golden shade that wasn’t too warm-toned for me was calling my name.

Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Eyeshadow Crayon in Taupe

Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Eyeshadow Crayon in Taupe

swatch Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Eyeshadow Crayon in Taupe

Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Eyeshadow Crayon in Taupe

I have used this on its own and under the Annabelle shadows and remarkably it hasn’t been creasing on me! I could barely get the swatch off my hand. Once these puppies are set, they aren’t going anywhere! Taupe is a beautiful, flattering shade that’s along the lines of MAC Powersurge Eye Kohl. Its like a browner, more coppery version of Powersurge.

The Annabelle Blushon powder blushes also bear a striking resemblance to the MAC blushes and are also Canadian made.

Annabelle blushes

Annabelle blushes are like mini MAC blushes!

I have #44 Rose Fawn and #32 Pronto.

Annabelle blushes (L-R): #44 and #32

Annabelle blushes (L-R): #44 Rose Fawn and #32 Pronto

swatches Annabelle blushes #44 and #32

Annabelle blushes (L-R): #44 Rose Fawn and #32 Pronto

Rose Fawn is soft, cool-toned pink that is nearly matte with only a hint of sheen. It really reminds me of the feel and the quality of the MAC blushes. Its really pretty on fair skin and lasts all day. I’ve worn this one a lot.

One miss: I absolutely loved Pronto, the pale, neutral rosey-taupe type of blush shade I love, but sadly Pronto turned out to be a miss for me. It looks beautiful when first applied but it seriously oxidized on me and by the end of the day it was way darker and completely, straight up-bronzer brown. My BF even asked me what I had on my face. I didn’t have any issues with Rose Fawn oxidizing.

Another favourite of mine are the Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Lipstick Crayons. I have the shades Romance a nude, mauvey pink and Vamp a deep, burgundy-plum.

Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Lipstick Crayons

Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Lipstick Crayons

annabelle twistup retractable lipstick crayons in romance and vamp

Romance and Vamp

These really remind me of the MAC Patentpolish Lip Pencils (I’ve reviewed Kittenish and Spontaneous, and Sultana). Side note: How excited are you that MAC is coming out with more Patentpolish Lip Pencils in new colours???!!! The Annabelle Lipstick Crayons feel creamy and comfortable like a lip balm and you can pop them on without a mirror, but they stay on for hours. I mean, look how pretty they are:

Swatch Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Lipstick Crayons in Romance and Vamp

Romance and Vamp

Annabelle is available in most drugstores – Shoppers Drug Mart, London Drugs, Rexall, Lawton’s Drugs – and Wal-Mart and Loblaws. If you are in the United States the Annabelle.ca site ships to the continental US, but doesn’t currently ship internationally. Here’s what I paid (yup bought all these myself and I’m not affiliated with the company in any way) for these Annabelle makeup items:

Annabelle Quad Eyeshadow: $10.95 CAD
Annabelle Trio Eyeshadow: $7.95 CAD
Anabelle Single Eyeshadow: $5.95 CAD
Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Eyeshadow Crayon: $9.95 CAD
Annabelle Blushon: $7.95 CAD
Annabelle TwistUp Retractable Lipstick Crayon: $9.95 CAD

I’d love to hear if you’ve tried the brand and if you have a favourite Annabelle product!

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Cheeks, Eyes, Eyeshadow, Face, Lips, Reviews

High-end Lipstick Review Series: Chantecaille

Chantecaille Lip Chic

Chantecaille Lip Chic

This is the second last post in my High-end Lipstick Review Series! I have only one more lipstick left to review and then its time for me to give away the highest scoring high-end lipstick to a subscriber in a shade of their choice!

While I was in Ottawa for a conference, I visited the Rideau Centre – a fabulous shopping destination – and was delighted to discover that a Nordstrom had just recently opened, the first one in Canada. I knew the Nordstrom website carried Chantecaille and shipped to Canada through Borderfree, but would they have it in store? Yes they did! I actually got to swatch the Lip Chic shades that I’d previously only been able to obsess over online.

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

I selected the shade, Camellia, a pale, cool-toned peachy-pink. I had been on a bit of a vampy lip colour spree lately and felt like I already had a lot of darker shades, so I was in the mood for something light and summery (maybe it was the warm Ottawa weather?).

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

I would caution that Camellia is very light, and although my ghostly-white self is enjoying this shade, it likely wouldn’t show up well on people with very pigmented lips or deeper skin tones.

Swatch Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

Camellia swatched

I paid $42.00 CAD in-store for the Lip Chic and was pretty psyched to not have paid any shipping costs or duty. On the Nordstrom site they’re charging $48.02 CAD plus $18.89 CAD for shipping and $10.13 CAD in duties & taxes for an astounding $77.04 CAD in total!!!

I also have to note that the Chantecaille Lip Chic is a fairly small lipstick and has less product than a MAC lipstick for example.

Chantecaille Lip Chic versus MAC lipstick

Less product: The Chantecaille Lip Chic is 2 g versus a 3 g MAC lipstick

Let’s start the review…

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Although certainly not as flashy as some of the other high-end brands, like YSL, Dior, Armani or Guerlain for instance, I did like the Chantecaille packaging. I thought the lavender shade of the box was unique. I can appreciate a minimalist type of design. The small, gunmetalish silver tube was a little plain but still felt weighty and snapped shut very securely like a high-end lipstick should. 2/3 Duchess points

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Loved the formula of the Lip Chic! Its very rich, pushing the boundaries to almost being sticky (but isn’t sticky) its so lip-balmy and moisturizing. It contains Hyaluronic Acid and Chondroitin Sulfate which evidently hydrates your lips. The Lip Chic is sheer and very glossy compared to the Chantecaille Lip Stick I also swatched. Chantecaille describes the Lip Chic as the “perfect combination of gloss and lipstick” and I couldn’t agree more. It basically gives the effect of a lip gloss without all the stickiness and messiness of lip gloss (I am so OVER having my hair and just about everything else sticking to lip gloss). I love to fill in my lips with a nude lip liner, like MAC Subculture or Whirl, or Annabelle Demure, and top it with Camellia Lip Chic. 3/3 Duchess points

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Again in terms of wear its the perfect combination of gloss and lipstick. I don’t normally find lip gloss long wearing. The Lip Chic is super shiny and glossy but long wearing like a lipstick. No idea how they did that! 3/3 Duchess points

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The Lip Chic has a light vanilla scent, similar to the MAC lipsticks and no discernible taste. What more could you ask for? 3/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
I’ve been using it for about 3 weeks now and it has not irritated my lips at all. No Duchess points deducted

MAC Test
I like the Lip Chic as much as I like my MAC lipsticks. Neutral Duchess points

Would I pay for another one?
Here’s where it gets tricky to answer. I would love to have more of the Lip Chics in some of the other shades. If I could purchase them in-store for $42 CAD I would. The problem is, only 4 stores in the entire country carry Chantecaille and none are remotely close to where I live. Realistically, for me to purchase another Lip Chic I would be looking at ordering it online through Nordstrom, and I would NOT pay $77 CAD for another one. I’m unlikely to be re-purchasing any.

I wish I could deem the Lip Chics splurge-worthy and award them an additional Duchess point putting them in second place overall. However at $77, for me they would not be worth it. If you happen to live in Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary or Vancouver where you can purchase them at Holt Renfrew or Nordstrom, I would recommend giving Chantecaille a try.
negative 1 duchess point
-1 Duchess point



Chantecaille Lip Chic Total: 10/14


High-end lipstick review series score chartOther reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
YSL Rouge Volupte Shine
Dior Addict Extreme
Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
Rouge Bunny Rouge
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
Burberry Lip Cover
Dolce & Gabbana
NARS Lipstick (original)

As always, thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

Mac is Beauty: Lips

MAC is BeautyI am a huge fan of MAC Lustre lipsticks and I’m often bummed when their limited edition collections come out because the lipsticks are typically in the other finishes, lately matte finishes especially. When I saw the spring Mac is Beauty collection I was really excited because it included 8 Lustre lipsticks!

I was just in Toronto for work and visited the MAC store in the Eaton’s Centre and got to swatch them all. My favourite was Real Redhead. It is the perfect nude for fair skin!

MAC is Beauty Real Redhead Lustre Lipstick

Real Redhead Lustre Lipstick

Real Redhead is described as “mauve nude”,  an odd description. I would describe it more as a fleshy-peachy nude.  I’ve been looking for a shade like this that works on cool-toned, fair skin for ages. Usually this type of shade washes me out. But Real Redhead has some brownish, beigey undertones that make it work.

MAC is Beauty Real Redhead Lustre Lipstick

Real Redhead

MAC is Beauty Real Redhead Lustre Lipstick swatch

Real Redhead

I think its the prettiest lipstick. If you like the lustre finishes, I’d really recommend you check out the limited edition MAC is Beauty collection. There are 7 other great shades.

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Lips, Lipstick

Review: New NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation

When I was last in Sephora, a super friendly SA demoed the new NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation for me and gave me a generous sample to try. I’ve given up on buying high-end foundation without trying out a sample first, if possible. The All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation is $57.00 CAD, so I definitely wanted to test out a sample before buying! I’ve been wearing it to work all week and I feel like I have made up my mind about it.

I asked the SA for the palest shade, and she gave me the shade Siberia. On the Sephora website, its described as “light w/ neutral balance of pink & yellow undertones.” There’s also two other very light shades: Mont Blanc, “light with pink undertones” and Gobi, “light with yellow undertones.”

Siberia is probably one of the palest, whitest (not pink or yellow toned) liquid foundations I’ve ever seen which is amazing! I have a really difficult time finding foundation light enough for me, and the first day I wore this someone told me, concerned, that I “looked pale.” I also have a difficult time with foundations oxidizing on me and shifting colour throughout the day. This did not happen at all. The colour really did stay true the entire time I was wearing it.

The foundation is described as “An oil-free foundation that delivers full, natural-looking coverage with one drop, for lightweight, 16-hour wear” and that “builds and blends effortlessly.” I would totally agree that it is full, yet natural looking coverage and not a thick mask of makeup (and I’m not always a big fan of full coverage). It also stayed on literally the entire day. But here is where the negative part of the review comes in. Before I cover the negatives, just to be clear, this is a foundation that you are supposed to shake. The SA said to stir the sample before each application, which I did.

This stuff did not blend effortlessly for me. I cannot imagine trying to blend out “one-drop” over my entire face. It reminds me of Revlon ColorStay only it “sets” even faster. It dries in place very quickly to the point that it took a lot of work to blend in and look natural. I tried several different methods of application: Beauty Blender, fingers, foundation brushes, including the Real Techniques Buffing Brush (normally a good one), but nothing really worked for me. I didn’t enjoy fighting with this foundation every morning 😦

Another negative for me was the finish. The word “luminous” may be in the product name, but this foundation is pretty much completely matte on me. I  prefer a liquid foundation that gives a more dewy, hydrated appearance to the skin. I have fairly dry skin and this foundation really accentuated that. It even made my skin feel dryer.

So to summarize…


  • Very light shades available for fair skin!
  • Colour stays true and doesn’t oxidize
  • Natural, not heavy/opaque combined with full coverage which is rare
  • Long wearing
  • Probably a good foundation for those with oily skin


  • Difficult to apply and blend
  • Sets too quickly
  • Matte finish, accentuated dryness
  • Not a good foundation for those with dry skin

I don’t think this is a bad foundation necessarily, it just isn’t the type of foundation I prefer and I don’t think its a good one for dry skin. If you’re looking for something extremely light and haven’t been able to find a foundation that matches your fair skin, this might be for you. If you have oily skin and are a fan of foundations like Revlon ColorStay, you would probably like this. My skin is super dry right now with the crazy cold, dry winter weather we’ve been having. I don’t think I’ll be purchasing this one.

Have you tried the NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation yet? What do you think?

I’ve also never tried NARS Sheer Glow, so please let me know if you think I’d like that foundation.

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Face, Foundation & Primer, Reviews

My Favourite NYX Blushes

NYX Blushes for fair skin

Hi everyone! I thought I’d give a little love to one of my favourite makeup products, NYX powder blushes. NYX are my favourite drugstore blushes. They wear longer on me than many other blushes I’ve tried, including high-end brands. After 8-12 hours they look exactly like they did when I first applied them. Typically priced at less than $6.50 CAD, they are a great deal, with the only downside being that the blushes are small (4g VS a 6g MAC blush for example) and very soft, so I do go through some of my favourite shades rather quickly.

Here are my favourite, top six NYX powder blushes:

Pinched, Bourgeois Pig, Natural, Peach, Angel, Mauve

Top L-R: Pinched, Bourgeois Pig, Natural. Bottom L-R: Peach, Angel, Mauve

NYX Pinched blush

PB25 Pinched

Pinched: A peachy-coral blush with subtle golden shimmer, Pinched has been compared to NARS Orgasm. Although similar, I don’t feel that they are exact dupes. Orgasm is much more pink and the finish is quite different. Orgasm has more of a duo-chrome type of sheen, reflecting differently from different angles, whereas Pinched is just shimmery. Here is Pinched swatched with Orgasm, Benefit Coralista, and MAC Peachykeen for comparison:

swatches NYX Pinched compared to NARS Orgasm, Benefit Coralista and MAC Peachykeen

NYX Pinched compared to NARS Orgasm, Benefit Coralista and MAC Peachykeen

NYX Bourgeois Pig blush

PB28 Bourgeois Pig

Bourgeois Pig: Love the name of this one. 🙂 Although a bit washed out in this pic (don’t get me started on lighting during a dark Canadian winter), its actually a very pigmented matte pink. On fair skin you do have to apply carefully with a light hand, but I like this blush for getting that flushed, rosy-cheeked, “I’ve been out in the cold” type of look. Its a great fall blush.

NYX Natural blush

PB07 Natural

Natural: A light, cool-toned matte pink. Great shade for fair skin.

NYX Peach blush

PB06 Peach

Peach: NYX is known for inexplicable shade names that don’t give a very accurate description of the actual colour. Peach is a perfect example of that. This blush is not even remotely peach. Its really a pale, soft, matte ballerina pink, very similar to Benefit’s Dandelion. Really love this one!

NYX Peach is a dupe for Benefit Dandelion

NYX Peach is a close dupe for Benefit Dandelion

NYX Angel blush

PB03 Angel

Angel: This is one of my favourite blushes ever! The prettiest shade on fair skin, its a unique “neutral” type of blush, with a subtle sheen, that I can only describe as peachy-pinky-apricotty perfection! I have hit pan on this shade so many times it made my Most Repurchased Products of all time.

NYX Mauve blush

PB13 Mauve

Mauve: Again, another NYX shade name that is very misleading. This is not a plum-toned blush at all. Its one of those soft, neutral, matte blushes with beigey/browny undertones, similar to some of my favourite MAC blushes like Prism, Blushbaby, or Mocha. None are dupes for Mauve. Mauve is more peach than any of them.

swatches NYX Mauve VS MAC Prism Blushbaby Mocha

MAC blushes that give a similar effect as NYX Mauve

Here are all six NYX blushes swatched side-by-side:

swatches NYX blushes Pinched, Bourgeois Pig, Natural, Peach, Angel, Mauve

L-R: Pinched, Bourgeois Pig, Natural, Peach, Angel, and Mauve

I’d love to hear what your favourite NYX blush shades are!

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Cheeks, Face, Favourites

My Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick Collection

Favourite Revlon Super Lustrous Lipsticks

yeah, um, so I *might* have a lipstick “problem”…

I thought I’d do a post about my favourite drugstore lipsticks: Revlon Super Lustrous. Actually, they are about the only drugstore lipstick I like. The deal breaker for me for so many lipsticks is the scent, and for some reason, I’m not a fan of a lot of the drugstore brands, like Maybelline (weird playdough scent), Loreal (old fashioned perfumey scent), Milani (fake watermelon scent), and NYX (perfumey/soapy scent & taste).

The Revlon Super Lustrous are totally unscented (hooray!) and have a really nice formula that’s comfortable to wear, non-drying, glossy, and there is such a huge colour selection. Evidently I have 14 of these (Sorry – I totally forgot Blackberry but for pics/swatch see this post). I didn’t include the 3 “Shine” lipsticks that I have, because I don’t like the formula, but I do have a whole review on those. You’ll notice I don’t have any of the matte finishes. I did try one once and absolutely hated it, but I typically don’t like matte lip products at all.

The shades I have are:

  • 631 Luminous Pink (pearl)
  • 415 Pink in the Afternoon (creme)
  • 651 Porcelain Pink (pearl)
  • 030 Pink Pearl (pearl)
  • 420 Blushed (pearl)
  • 130 Rose Velvet (creme)
  • 641 Spicy Cinnamon (pearl)
  • 473 Mauvy Night (pearl)
  • 477 Black Cherry (creme)
  • 663 Va Va Violet (creme)
  • 640 Blackberry (creme) – Not pictured

best revlon super lustrous lipsticks fair skin

631 Luminous Pink: A little bit of a peachy-pink, this is the sheerest and most shimmery one I have. Remarkably, it works on fair skin and is a pretty, subtle, glossy shade that looks good for everyday AND with a dark, smokey eye.

415 Pink in the Afternoon: A light, cool-toned pink that also woks really well for fair skin. This shade has a very retro feel to it to me, like Betty Draper might have worn it.

651 Porcelain Pink: Ok, I honestly have no idea what makes this frosty pink work in me, but there’s just something I really like about it.

030 Pink Pearl: This shade is more of a neutral brown-pink, and isn’t full on pink like 415 or 651. Its one of those my-lips-but-better shades.

420 Blushed: Speaking of my-lips-but-better shades, Blushed is a warm, pink-brown. I like this one, but I wouldn’t say its one of my favourites.

130 Rose Velvet: A rich, rosy brown-toned shade. This works well on me because of my pink undertones so it looks more “pinky-brown” on me. But reviewers have mentioned it can look more brown on some people (great for the 90s brown lip trend though).

641 Spicy Cinnamon: This is a very wearable berry red shade for me because of the brown undertones in it.  Like Rose Velvet I think it might look more brown on some.

473 Mauvy Night: My favourite Revlon lipstick! Love this plum shade.

477 Black Cherry: A dramatic, dark wine shade, it reminds me of a vampy lipstick from the 1920’s or 1930’s. Really like this one.

663 Va Va Violet: Full on, gothy dark purple. Not for the faint of heart.

640 Blackberry: A deep burgundy red, great on fair skin for a “Snow White” effect or a classic 1950’s type of look. Another fav. (pic/swatch)

favorite revlon super lustrous lipsticks fair skin

swatches revlon super lustrous lipsticks fair skin

Hope you enjoyed my collection! I’d love to hear what your favourite Revlon lipsticks are!

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Favourites, Lips, Lipstick

Review: NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in "Chantilly"

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in “Chantilly”

It seems like everyone has just been raving about the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer lately. So when Sephora sent me a VIB Rouge $25 gift card to redeem in December, I thought it might be a good time to try it out. At $35 CAD, its a bit of a pricey concealer.

I ordered the lightest shade (as I would do with any product) which is Chantilly “true ivory for fairest complexions.” It is very light! Finding a concealer or highlighter lighter than my skintone is not easy, but Chantilly definitely is.

swatch NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer ChantillyRight away, the thing that I was not a huge fan of is the doe-foot applicator. I guess I’m just used to a more traditional concealer in a pot, or a highlighter with a clickable brush (like my fav L’Oreal Magic Lumi Concealer). Its odd to use a concealer that  looks like a lipgloss.
NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer ChantillyI tried using this concealer 3 ways:

  1. as an under-eye concealer
  2. as a highlighter/brightener
  3. over blemishes

How did it do…

as an under-eye concealer?
I’m VERY picky about under-eye concealers and it took me a long time to find my current fav, Laura Mercier Secret Concealer. I have dry skin, especially around my eyes, and most concealers will look cakey and/or crease. The Laura Mercier topped with MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Microfinish Powder does not crease on me or settle into any little fine lines and stays put until I remove it. Unfortunately, the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer did not. It accentuated any dryness and it creased on me. A lot. I would definitely not use this as an under-eye concealer.

as a highlighter/brightener?
After I apply my Laura Mercier, I use the L’Oreal Magic Lumi just below my under-eye area (which can be a little bit puffy). I put the highlighter in the slight “crease” that I have beneath my under-eye “bag” (for lack of a better word – lol, its not really that much of a bag). I find this brightens my under-eye area. For visuals, see gossmakeupartist’s YouTube video How To: Make Eye Bags Vanish in Seconds.

I did find the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer worked pretty well for this, especially because its so light. However, my $12.99 CAD L’Oreal Magic Lumi does just as good a job.

over blemishes?
I did try using this to conceal a blemish I got over Christmas, when its really, really hard to completely avoid gluten (stuffing! gingerbread cookies! gravy!). Gluten wreaks total havoc on my skin. Anyway, I wasn’t that fussy over it as a blemish concealer either. First of all, the shade Chantilly – which I chose intending to use as an under-eye concealer/brightener – was too bright for blemishes. A darker shade might work better, but honestly it was kind of sheer and luminous; Not ideal for concealing a spot. It took several coats, plus it didn’t hold up that well over the day. Thumbs down.

Sadly, the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer just didn’t work out for me. I’m glad I had the discount to use towards it. I don’t think its worth all the hype.

What do you think? Have you tried it? And do you love it or hate it?

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Concealer, Face, Reviews

Makeup Geek Blushes for Fair Skin

Makeup Geek Blushes for fair skin

Makeup Geek Blushes!

I was already a fan of the Makeup Geek (MUG) eyeshadows, so I think I was as excited as everyone else when the blushes came out earlier this year. I finally got around to placing an order. I can’t believe it took me so long! I love the MUG packaging, and these blush compacts are no exception. To me, they are the perfect size and shape – sleek, lightweight and compact. Love the gun metal finish and the clear lid so I can see what the shade is without opening them!

I looked at a lot of the reviews and swatches online before deciding on four shades that I thought would work for me. I have very pale skin with cool, pink undertones. I ordered:

  • Smitten
  • Honeymoon
  • Spell Bound
  • Bliss
Makeup Geek blushes Smitten, Honeymoon, Spell Bound, Bliss

Clockwise from top right: Smitten, Honeymoon, Spell Bound, Bliss

Makeup Geek blushes Bliss, Smitten, Spell Bound, Honeymoon

L-R: Bliss, Smitten, Spell Bound, Honeymoon

Makeup Geek blush Smitten


Smitten was the one blush that looked a bit iffy once I saw it in person because I initially thought it may be a little too orangey and might not work on me. Some bloggers have described this shade as “apricot.” Once applied it totally works though! I think because the pigmentation is light and subtle (but buildable). I didn’t get a big crazy dark swatch of peach across my cheek if you know what I mean. I love the soft matte finish of this blush and I think the light peachy shade compliments fair skin very well.

Makeup Geek blush Honeymoon


Honeymoon seems to have sparkles/glitter in it in the pan and even when I first swatched it, but once applied on my cheeks with the Real Techniques Blush Brush, it isn’t sparkly or glittery at all. So don’t be put off by that. A neutral, peachy-brown shade, its very pretty, natural and a little bit glowy on fair skin. It was also the sheerest of the four.

Makeup Geek blush Spell Bound

Spell Bound

Out of the four, Spell Bound is my favourite. A muted pinkey-brown with subtle plum undertones, this matte blush is right up my alley!

Makeup Geek blush Bliss


Bliss reminds me of the MAC Sheertone blushes – very light and subtle and perfect on lighter skin tones. Out of the four, I would say Bliss would be the one that would likely not work on darker skintones because it probably wouldn’t show up. This fleshy, pinky-peach, soft matte shade looks so pretty on the cheeks.

Makeup Geek blush Swatches Bliss, Smitten, Spell Bound, Honeymoon

Swatches L-R: Bliss, Smitten, Spell Bound, Honeymoon

The MUG blushes remind me most of my NYX blushes. They are very soft and powdery, not like my MAC or Tarte blushes which I seem to hardly ever be able to make a dent in. Smooth and easy to apply, the soft matte finish is so similar to the NYX matte shades. Also like my NYX blushes, these are very long wearing. They are nearly the exact same size as the NYX too; the MUG are 0.15 oz, and the NYX 0.14 oz.

The thing I like best about the four shades I ordered is that they are light, subtle and a little on the sheer side. This makes them so easy to apply. I don’t have to worry about being too heavy-handed or applying too much, which is so easy to do on fair skin. All four look very natural and complimentary. I’d recommend them for any fair-skinned gals out there.

The MUG blushes in the compacts are $12.99 USD each. As always I was super impressed with the MUG shipping (only $9.22 USD). It arrived in just 10 days which is impressive for where I live. I’ve often waited a month for online orders to arrive. I didn’t incur any additional customs charges or anything. I love ordering from the MUG site.

I also ordered a few more of the MUG eyeshadows, and will be doing a post about them as well.

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Cheeks, Face, Reviews

Vampy Retro Lips (just in time for fall)

vampy, retro, vintage fall lipsticks

Vampy, plum-toned lipsticks perfect for fall!

All the leaves have turned beautiful fall colours here in Canada, and isn’t fall a perfect time for rich, plum-toned lip colours? Dark, vampy lipsticks always make me feel like I’m in a classic black and white film. These are some of my favourite vintagey lipsticks:

Besame Noir Red: Not actually a red, but a deep 1930s plum, it has a semi-matte finish. Totally vintage, the Besame lipsticks are exact reproductions of shades worn by Hollywood starlets. This is a perfect film noir, retro pin-up lipstick! $22 USD.

theBalm Girls Amanda Kissmylips: More of a brown-toned plum, on fair skin this has a similar, old-school vampy look as the Besame Noir Red. But theBalm Gilrs lipsticks are very hydrating and have a bit more shine. Love the cute names too! $20 CAD.

Revlon Super Lustrous Va Va Violet:  The Revlon lipsticks are some of my favourites. This rich purple lipstick is a full-on goth type of shade. It goes on a bit sheer, so you could go for a more subtle plum stain or build it up for a bold, vampy lip. Embrace your inner femme fatale! $9.99 CAD.

Revlon Colorstay Moisture Stain in Parisian Passion: Another great drugstore option. I was really impressed by the Moisture Stain and love this deep purple/plum shade. Check-out my full review. $9.99 CAD.

MAC Hang-up (cremesheen): This “deep berry” is a perfect fall shade. I think depending on your undertones, it could look either more raspberry or more blackberry. Its definitely more purpley-plummy on me. $19 CAD.

MAC Capricious (lustre): This luscious plum lipstick is my absolute favourite right now. I have almost used it up and will definitely be repurchasing this shade. Its also the plum lipstick worn by “evil queen” Regina on one of my favourite shows, One Upon a Time. $19 CAD.

Swatches: Besame Noir Red, theBalm Amanda Kissmylips,Revlon Va Va Violet, Revlon Parisian Passion, MAC Hang-up, MAC Capricious

Swatches: Besame Noir Red, theBalm Amanda Kissmylips, Revlon Va Va Violet, Revlon Parisian Passion, MAC Hang-up, MAC Capricious

I’d love to hear your fall lipstick favourites!

Hoping all my Canadian readers are having an awesome, turkey-filled Thanksgiving long-weekend!
Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Favourites, Lips, Lipstick

Where Have You Been All My Life, MAC Paints?

MAC Paints in Sublime Nature

MAC Paints in “Sublime Nature”

How is it I have only just now discovered MAC Paints? I was watching one of Sanni’s (missmai27) tutorials where she was doing a very subtle, understated eye look, and she used MAC Paints in Sublime Nature. Not to be confused with MAC Paint Pots, Paints come in a little squeezable tube. I had never heard of them!

Paints are described as:
“A high performance eye shadow product which goes on creamy; dries to a powdery finish…Creates a smooth, crease-free, slightly shiny, reflective look to the lid.”

Sublime Nature is a “mid-tone naked beige” and combined with the texture of the Paints creates a very natural, “no make-up” type of look. Very pretty and subtle, particularly on fair skin.

Swatch: MAC Paints in Sublime Nature

Swatch: MAC Paints in Sublime Nature

I found it easy to apply and easy to blend, and it stayed put all day with no creasing. I did use my Too Faced Shadow Insurance under it, but I do that with all the cream shadows I have (Maybelline Color Tattoos, Chanel Illusion D’Ombre, Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadows) because I find all eyeshadow will crease on me without a primer.

MAC Paints are $25 CAD. Paints only come in four other shades: Stillife: pale peach with icy shimmer; Bare Canvas: champagne with shimmer; Untitled: soft grey-mauve with shimmer; and Bamboom: beige-brown with golden shimmer.

Have you tried them?

Thanks for stopping by ❤
Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Eyes, Eyeshadow, Reviews

Laura Mercier Plumberry Lip Pencil

Laura Mercier Plumberry Lip Pencil

Laura Mercier Plumberry Lip Pencil

I am so in love with this lipliner! Plumberry was featured in a Get Ready With Me video by TheBombshellSuite and raved about by LisaLisaD1, who really knows her lipliners. I had tried to order it online, but Sephora was sold out of this shade, so I was really excited to pick it up at a Sephora while I was traveling.

Plumbery is described as “medium rose brown” but is definitely more on the plummy side than this description suggests. It is a beautiful shade of lip liner.

laura mercier plumberry


Laura Mercier Plumberry lip pencil swatch

Plumberry swatched

This is my first Laura Mercier lip liner and I am impressed. This liner goes on so creamy and smooth but is also long-wearing. That combo is hard to find in a liner. The Laura Mercier Lip Pencils are $28 CAD though, which is the only downside; that’s pricey for a lip liner. However it does have an extra durable metal cap (plastic liner caps have a tendency to split) and they do throw in a sharpener with it!

Laura Mercier Free Lip Pencil Sharpener

You get a free sharpener with the lip pencil!

I’d love suggestions for other good lip liner shades from Laura Mercier.

Thanks for stopping by ❤
Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Lip Liner, Lips, Reviews