Laniege: Bright Renew Serum and Bright Renew Emulsion

I’m always researching skincare products to try to find the best I can in terms of ingredients, effectiveness and value. Whether it be outstanding drugstore skincare, like the Olay Regenerist and ProX range or the Laniege Bright Renew range from Sephora that I’ll be reviewing here, I always try to test out the products for at least a few months to see how they work for me.

Remember – what might work for me, may not work for you; and vice-versa!  But I’m hoping my reviews give all of you, at the very least, some glimpse of what is out there and products that you might’ve been curious about!

So, after using up the majority of my Olay products, I was ready to re-stock and try something new. After doing some reading on the Laniege Bright Renew range, I decided to start with the Laniege Bright Renew Emulsion and Bright Renew Serum:

Laniege is a Korean brand. Korean skincare has been gaining popularity in the last few years here in the western world and if you keep on top of trends, you’ll know that Korean skincare is serious business!

What attracted me to Laniege was the description of these products and what they claim to deliver – things that I specifically always look for in my skincare, for my needs. Let’s start with the emulsion:

As per the Sephora website:

What it is:
A radiance-restoring lotion to brighten a dull, uneven complexion. 

What it is formulated to do:
Formulated with LANEIGE’s exclusive, patented Melacrusher™ technology—a potent combination of antioxidant-rich truffle yeast extract and revitalizing green tea extract—this brightening innovator visibly reduces yellowing resulting from overactive melanin production. Dark spots, unevenness, and discoloration fade away as luminosity and transparency are restored.

First off, this is a super, light-weight lotion that would be awesome for normal, combo, and oily skintypes; dry skintypes might find this not moisturizing enough. I use this straight after using the LBR Serum and I find they work beautifully together – giving me the right amount of hydration. This lotion does not contain SPF, so when I do use this I make sure to top up with some face SPF or use makeup with SPF.

As far as its claims to reduce dark spots, unevenness, and discolouration – I can’t say for certain that this has happened for me, but I also do know that results can take a long time.  What I am sure of is that I like the formula, skin has a nice glow after using, keeps my skin hydrated throughout the day and overall my skin has been looking more luminous.

The LBR Serum is what I use underneath the LBR Emulsion. As per the Sephora website:

What it is:
A high-performance, intensive serum to visibly brighten and restore skin clarity. 

What it is formulated to do:
Active brightening complex Melacrusher™ gently eliminates and blocks pigmentation while retexturizing and reviving skin’s perfect tone. Luminosity is restored and skin appears radiant and youthful.

You can see from the description, the serum is formulated very similarly to the lotion. Because of this, sometimes I think that it might be ‘overkill’ to use both products that essentially do the same thing or contain the same ingredients. But then again, that’s how most skincare ranges are designed.

This serum is probably the most lightweight serum I’ve tried in my life – the consistency is like milk. The packaging is a pipette and a few drops into the palm of my hand, I have enough to cover my entire face. At first application, I thought the consistency would be too thin to actually make my skin feel hydrated – but I was wrong!  Once this is fully absorbed into my skin, it feels amazingly hydrated.

After using both these products consistently for about 4 months now – I’ve actually just finished up the serum.  I do like them both. I really don’t see any noticable difference in my skin, in terms of texture, condition, or radiance.  Would I repurchase?  No.

The serum is $59 Cdn for 40 ml and emulsion is $39 Cdn for 100 ml., both at Sephora.

Have you tried these products?  Like or dislike?  Have you tried any other Laniege products?

Thanks for reading!



Tarte Magical Moments Deluxe Best Sellers Essentials Set

A few months overdue, but for Christmas, my bestie Jenn surprised me with the Tarte Magical Moments Deluxe Best Sellers Set.  I was so excited to receive this because it included three samplers of products that I knew I would use!

The blush is in the colour Unstoppable; the lipstick is in the shade Living; and the Lights, Camera, Lashes mascara is in black.

I’ve hummed and hawed about indulging myself in a full-size Tarte 12-hour Amazonian Clay blush but I just could never justify paying $35 for one – even though this blush is probably one of the most raved about FOREVER amongst beauty and makeup fanatics.  When I saw that this little gift set came with a mini version of the Amazonian Clay formula I was super excited to give this a go and see if the the hype is really all that it is!  After wearing this blush pretty much everyday since I got it – YES!  The Tarte clay blush formula is really long-wearing, with a beautiful, smooth, radiant finish!  This shade in particular – Unstoppable – is a great muted, neutral pinky-nude shade that is awesome for everyday.  This makes me think that the $35 for a full-size Tarte blush isn’t all that ridiculous now – this mini will probably last me at least a year or two (or three); a full-size would last waaay longer than that!

The lipstick is a mini of the Rainforest of the Sea Drench Lip Splash Lipstick formula. It’s a creamy matte formula with very high pigmentation. When I first applied this, I really didn’t expect too much, but wow – talk about creamy, lightweight, comfortable AND high colour pay off. This is a matte formula but it feels so nourishing, creamy and light on the lips!  The shade I have is Living and it’s a deep pink – a dark pinky brown (on my lips anyway).  This wears pretty well through out the day and if I don’t disturb it too much (i.e. eating, drinking) I’m left with a nice stain on my lips. The full-size lipstick retails for $26 and I think this a pretty reasonable price for the quality of the product.

And lastly, the Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes mascara that claims to lengthen, volumize, curl and condition. I think this mascara is OK – it doesn’t really do anything spectacular for my lashes but it does enough of a good job that I will continue use it.  For the price point ($25 for the full-size), I’d actually prefer my Maybelline Colossal Cat Eyes mascara from the drugstore for $4.99 to give me decent looking lashes for day-to-day.

Overall, I’m very happy with this set!  I’m sure I will finish all the products up eventually and it’s given me a very good idea of what Tarte products are all about!

Have you tried any Tarte products?  If so, what’s your fave?

Thanks for reading!


Living Proof Full Dry Volume Blast

When a hair product has the word “volume” in its name, you know I’m all over it. Picked up a deluxe sample size of the Living Proof Full Dry Volume Blast:

According to Sephora:

What it is:
An instant, long-lasting volume and texture spray designed with lightweight ingredients that won’t weigh hair down.

What it does:
Perfect for straight or wavy hair, the Living Proof Full Dry Volume Blast is an instant volume and texture spray for long-lasting, big hold. The spray is nearly as light as air and created to transform fine, flat hair into voluminous styles that aren’t crunchy or stiff.

What it is formulated WITHOUT:
– Parabens
– Sulfates
– Phthalates

What else you need to know:
This product contains patent-pending “expandable, textured-aero-spheres,” called ETAs. They are lighter and bigger than industry-standard ingredients, so they deliver big volume and texture without weighing hair down.

I finished up the small bottle and I’m undecided about this product. First off, this does give my hair volume, without leaving it feeling sticky or hard, but I don’t feel that the lift lasts very long – an hour at the most, maybe. I have fine, thin hair that is limp by the end of the day and I just didn’t find that this made that much of a difference for me.

What I do like about the product is that it’s super light weight and doesn’t leave any sort of residue in my hair.  It’s also got that signature Living Proof scent that I really like (some don’t care for it).

I’ve tried a few other Living Proof products – the Full Thickening Cream ($38Cdn) is one of my holy grail hair products; I’ve gone through two bottles of this already and will continue to repurchase. The Living Proof Anti-Humidity spray is also a great product for hot and humid days to keep my frizzies under control.

The Volume Blast is oh-kaaay, but I don’t think I will re-purchase.

I haven’t done a review on this but the Garnier Fructis Style Deconstructed Texture Tease Spray is a similar product to the Living Proof Full Volume Blast and in my opinion it actually works better for me than the Volume Blast.  I can get the Garnier for about $5 Cdn for 110 ml; the Living Proof is $38 Cdn for 238 ml. And the fact that Garnier is available at the drugstore makes it easy to access when I’m running low.

Have you tried the Volume Blast?  Like or dislike?

Thanks for reading!