Top 10 Beauty Faves of 2014 and Thank You!

Hey Pretties!

It’s the end of the year (where did it go??) and I have to say I’m so glad I decided to start up Try Me Pretty in February 2014. When I wrote my first post I had no idea if I was actually going to stick with it and if anyone would actually read my stuff. To my surprise, I’ve managed to gain a solid following both on the blog and on my Instagram page (@trymepretty).

I’ve recieved so many great comments and feedback from other beauty bloggers, Insta-beauty gals and in-person friends and family. It makes me smile knowing that being the “tester” for beauty products has helped so many of you make better decisions in your beauty product purchases! I hope I can continue to help you as well as entertain you with my posts!

I’ve put together my Top 10 Beauty Faves of 2014 here. I sat down with pen and paper thinking that this would be a really hard list to make — but nope! Apparently the products I’m praising today have definitely made an impact on me this year and came to mind easily for this post. Where I’ve done a review on a product, I will provide the link in the product name (in case you want to check it out!); and where I haven’t done a review, I’ll try to say a few words about it for you!

Thank you for reading and all your support! I hope everyone’s had a great 2014 and I look forward to sharing more with you in the new year!!

My Top Ten Beauty Favourites for 2014

My Top Ten Beauty Favourites for 2014

Tess’ Top 10 Beauty Faves of 2014

In no particular order:

  1. Nuxe Rêve de Miel – Probably the most nourishing lip balm I have ever tried in my entire life. Gone through 2 jars this year and planning on picking up another very soon.
  2. The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil – I jumped on the cleansing oil bandwagon and I’m so glad I did with this affordable oil. Gone through 2 bottle of this and I can’t wait to start on my third! I’ve had friends try this out and have been loving it as much as I am!
  3. Urban Decay All-Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray – Seriously works. Go and get it.
  4. Maybelline FitMe Foundation (original formula) – So I just looked through my foundation stash and this one looks like the one I’ve used up the most. Great formula for everyday wear (semi-dewy finish) and great colour match.
  5. Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover – Best one at the drugstore, in my opinion. Doesn’t sting and removes the most waterproof eye makeup super easily.
  6. NARS Sheer Lipstick in Dolce Vita – Recommended by my good friend, Jenn, this is by far the best MLBB lipstick for me EVER. My first high-end lippie purchase. I love this so much and I am afraid for my wallet because I will definitely repurchase another one once I run out!
  7. Real Techniques Buffing Brush – I’ve always applied my foundation with my fingers — but after seeing and hearing so many rave reviews about foundation brushes, in particular the RT Buffing Brush for a flawless foundation application, I had to get my hands on this little tool. Glad I did — I have never used my fingers since buying this baby to apply foundation. Applies foundation fast, seamlessly and flawlessly, leaving a natural finish. I’ve washed this brush about every two weeks since getting it mid-2014 and it is still in great shape.
  8. Nip and Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating Pads – A great drugstore find for an affordable AHA exfoliant.
  9. NYX Powder Blushes – It seemed I was late in the game on trying out the NYX brand, but I’m glad I can find them much easier at my local drugstore. I have a few different NYX products, but the blushes have really impressed me. Super affordable for very good quality powder blushes.
  10. Maybelline Colossal Cat Eyes Waterproof Mascara – The brush on this wand is the perfect curled size to coat, separate and lengthen each and every lash. Holds the curl well throughout the day. I’ve re-purchased this a few times and even gave this away as a gift to a friend!

There you have it – my 10 best, most loved, most used beauty products of 2014!

Thanks for reading and for a fun year of writing, reading and reviewing! Looking forward to sharing my thoughts with you again in 2015!




Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black and Nirvana White

Hi Pretties!

Today I thought I’d mix it up and do a review on some scents that I’ve been loving lately. I’m sure everyone has seen, heard and/or even smelled the fragrance launched by Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen (yes, the Full House twins!) called Nirvana Black and Nirvana White.

Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black and White rollerball set

Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black and White rollerball set

I was wandering around Sephora a few months back in the summer time and came across the Nirvana display. Upon reading the scent qualities of both Nirvana scents I was excited to sample them and love them both — each one was definitely perfumes that had scent qualities that I am usually attracted to and find works the best with my own body chemistry.

A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to grab a cute little rollerball set from Sephora during their VIB sale (thanks Jen!) that gave me an additional 20% off from this $24 set!  Gives me a chance to have both to really get a feel for how they work on me.


On the Sephora website Nirvana Black is described as follows:

Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black is an addictive blend of alluring violet, sensual sandalwood, and rich vanilla that strike the perfect balance between masculine and feminine.

Notes: Violet, Sandalwood, Vanilla.

Style: Sensual. Mysterious. Warm

Nirvana Black is probably the favourite of the two. The ‘Style’ description that Sephora gives it is perfect — definitely more on the warm side; something I could see wearing for a more formal night out or even just an everyday autumn/winter scent under a cozy sweater. I’m really into musky warm scents and this one is, however, it still has enough of a warm fresh essence that is quite wearable and casual, that it is something I have been reaching for during the day time. Wearing this scent makes me feel powerful in a way — like I have control of things.  Isn’t that weird how perfume can instantly transform how you feel?

I’ve been rationing the little Nirvana Black rollerball because I don’t think it’ll be anytime soon that I’ll be able to indulge myself on the full-size perfume of this magnificent fragrance! I’d say the lasting power on this is pretty good; but because I haven’t been applying too much I can’t say for certain of its true lasting power. The little dab that I do put on however, I can get a good 7 hours adequate ‘sniff me’ time before it’s completely faded.


On the Sephora website Nirvana White is described as follows:

Elizabeth and James Nirvana White is a captivating blend of delicate peony, chic muguet, and tender musk for a feminine scent with dark sophistication.

Notes: Peony, Muguet, Tender Musk.

Style: Sophisticated. Feminine. Captivating.

Nirvana White is an awesome scent. This is the lighter, ‘easier’ to wear of the two — much more of a day time, everyday scent but still has those musky, rich fragrant qualities that I tend to like in a perfume. I feel like White can be worn all year long, through any season. It is definitely a feminine scent, with a bit of toughness thrown in there — love it!

I’ve been wearing this almost everyday since I bought it — very wearable and casual.

At Sephora, both Nirvanas come in an eau du parfum for $90 Cdn or a perfume oil for $42 Cdn. One of these days… I’ll get my hands on full-sizes of both these lovelies!!!

I give the Nirvana Black and White Rollerball Perfumes: a STANDING OVATION

Have you tried these perfumes?  Like or dislike – one or both?

Thanks for reading!!


Maybelline Matte Lipsticks

Hey Pretties!

Over the last few months I’ve been seeing so many Instagram photos and YouTube reviews on the new Maybelline Matte Lipstick collection. Of course, sad as it is, Canada seems to always be late in the game when it comes to distribution of new makeup products. I’m probably in my local drugstore at least once a week checking out the displays of new makeup when I see or hear about new products coming out!

At the end of November, my sister took a trip across the border so I jumped to ask her to pick me a up a few of the Mattes. And wouldn’t you know it… two weeks after she came back, I popped into my local drugstore and BAM! there they were!

The two I asked my sister to get for me were the most nude of the 8-lipstick collection:  Daringly Nude and Touch of Spice:

Maybelline Mattes: Daringly Nude and Touch of Spice

Maybelline Mattes: Daringly Nude and Touch of Spice


The collection has these two nude/natural shades, a few pinks, a coral, red and a deep burgundy. It’s not a big selection, but it looks like Maybelline has every ‘standard’ lipstick shade covered.

I’m a huge fan of the Maybelline Color Sensational lipstick range – the formula of those lipsticks are amazing – creamy, pigmented and smooth – and the colour selection is huge. I am glad to say that I am now also a fan of the Matte line!

L - Daringly Nude; R - Touch of Spice

L – Daringly Nude; R – Touch of Spice

Daringly Nude is the lightest shade of the bunch. It’s definitely a nude (as the name suggests) and pulls on the beigey-orangey side (at least on my lips). This is a tad to light for me — looks like I’m just wearing concealer on my lips and it really washes me out. I think for those with lighter skintones, this might be a good nude lipstick option. I’m not ready to give up on it though — will experiment with other colours I have in my stash to see if I can create a better colour for my skintone!

Touch of Spice is a beautiful pinky-brown shade — great for everyday wear and I can see shade looking good on just about any skintone. Building it up on my lips creates a much more deep, almost brown lip (Kylie Jenner anyone?). However, I tend to wear it a bit lighter (about 3 swipes top and bottom lip) and then blot with a tissue to remove excess, give it an extra nudge for staying power and to tone down the brown and bring out the dusty pink. I am loving this shade so far for the winter season — dark enough but also neutral enough for wearing at the office. I’ve seen a lot of other beauty bloggers comparing this to MAC’s Twig – I have to say this is a pretty good dupe for it (I have MAC’s Twig also) and although the formulas are different (Twig is more on the creamy side, not particularly matte), the colours are almost identical.

These lipsticks glide onto the lips so smoothly without any issue of pulling or grabbing onto the lips. For a matte formula this is a big plus because most matte formulas tend to feel quite dry when applying. The finish of these is definitely matte, yet I’m still able to smoosh my lips together and it feels very comfortable and has a little bit of slip.

For me, I’d say the wear time on these is not bad — after coffee and a muffin, being at the office for 4 hours, the lipstick faded however it left my lips with a bit of a stain and no dryness whatsoever.

I am very impressed with the Maybelline Mattes! If I’m brave enough, I’d love to pick up the darkest burgundy shade in the collection and sport that one day.

I give the Maybelline Matte Lipsticks: a HIGH FIVE

Have you tried these lipsticks?  Like or dislike?  What colours do you have?

Thanks for stopping by!