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Maha Matar

    BEAUTY

    Skin Saving DIY Facial Mask

    Hi Beauties,

    I’ve been so upset lately at how my skin has looked the past few weeks. I don’t remember when my last facial or exfoliating treatment was. I’ve noticed more blackheads around my chin and nose area, dull complexion and of course the dreaded acne around my T-zone…gross! Not sure if it’s because of the heat or stress!



    So began my mission to find something to save my skin! As I’m trying to live a more wholesome lifestyle, I decided to forgo the chemically induced facial treatments and opt for a more holistic approach to my skin problem. I decided to make my own facial mask. Yes, I’ve become a DIY’er! Masks are great to use once or twice a week, depending on your skin, to deep clean and re-hydrate your skin! I researched a lot of masks online until I found one that not only benefits my skin in many ways (skin brightener, acne reduction, pore diminishing) but also uses wholesome ingredients. This one is by far the most effective and now my “GO-TO ” weekly mask:

     
    COCONUT OIL + HONEY + LEMON 
     
     
     
     
    Organic Coconut Oil is naturally rich in antioxidants. It helps eliminate dry cells, clears acne, unclogs pores, promotes skin elasticity, and helps hydrate the skin even after washing it off as it penetrates deep into the skin cells! 


    Raw Honey is used to hydrate and moisturise the skin, fades acne scars/blemishes, and exfoliates skin cells when combined with other oils such as coconut or olive. 


    Lemon Juice acts as a natural astringent and is amazing at killing bacteria that causes acne. 


    These ingredients combined together make a powerhouse mask that costs less than .75 cents a batch!!!


    Ingredients:

     
    1 tablespoon coconut oil
    • 2 teaspoons raw honey
    • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
     
    Directions:

    1 Combine the above ingredients thoroughly in a small mixing bowl.
    2 Apply a thick coat of the mixture onto your clean face.
    3 Allow the mixture to sink in for 10 minutes. Rinse off with cool water.
     
     

    Too easy right ? It’s been 2 weeks since I made my first batch of this miracle mask and I LOVE IT! My skin looks dewy (not oily), hydrated, and my acne diminished in 2 days! I didn’t wear makeup today, just moisturiser, and I had a natural glow to my skin that I hadn’t seen in a long time! So happy I came across this skin saving mask!

    Give it a try and let me know what you think! 


    Maha

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    BEAUTY

    EYELINER 101!

    Every makeup bag needs a good black eyeliner to help create that perfect cat eye look! It’s no secret how much I love my eyeliner, but it seems I’m on a never ending quest to find the best black eyeliner out there. It’s been a long 15 years but I think I got it! Actually, because I’m a self proclaimed makeup junkie I couldn’t narrow it down to just 1 so I had to list my top 9. I have all these eyeliners in my makeup bag ( no joke!)  and I use them quite a bit. I reach for my gel or liquid liners when I want an extra bold look.  For a soft smokey eye I opt for a pencil liner instead. Regardless of the type of liner I use they all have to be long wearing, smudge proof, easy to apply and of course black.

     



    1. This is my most used gel liner. I use a MAC 266 or 263 brush to apply it .The consistency of the 
    gel is great and it last all day.Gel liners require a bit of practise to achieve the perfect line but this smooth gel formula definitely makes it a lot easier. Fluidline is a cult favourite.    MAC Fluidline 

    2. I love the fine tip on this liquid pencil. It’s great for precise application around the eyes. The tip glides very easily and this liquid pencil never smudges. EVER! Stila Stay All Day waterproof eyeliner


    3. Allure Best of Beauty Award Winner multiple times. Extremely smooth gel formula. Great staying power all day and night. My favourite gel liner to use on clients because I can guarantee them this gel liner will not budge. Bobbi Brown Gel Eyeliner


    4. This is a great drugstore gel liner! The formula has changed in the past year or so for the best.It’s so easy to apply and it dries quickly so you don’t have to wait for it to dry before putting on falsies or mascara. I love that this gel liner comes with it’s own brush! I recommend this gel liner for any beginners to eyeliner. Maybelline Lasting Drama by Eyestudio Gel Eyeliner

    5. I use The Curve when I’m rushing out the door and can’t deal with brushes at that moment. I really like the very skinny tip so you can use it for precision work around the eyes and you always get a sharp clean line. The Curve offers excellent colour payoff and is very quick drying. This is another great drugstore product. NYX The Curve Liner


    6. Totalbeauty.com named the Rimmel London Scandal Eyes liner best Kohl Pencil. According to their readers “this drugstore brand stands up to other high-end products”. This liner has a very smooth and creamy consistently so it applies very effortlessly. I noticed the staying power of this liner in my waterline on a very humid day; no smudging or running of the product.  Pencil liners are the most commonly used eye liners mostly because their easy to use.  Rimmel London Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl



    7. This is my go-to liner for any dramatic eye look (think Arabic style). I love the colour payoff on this gel liner and it’s one of the smoothest and creamiest formulas on the market. Make UP FOR EVER Aqua 


    8. I’ve been using this liquid liner for for over 10 years now. The short handle is great for precision work around the eyes, the liquid glides on easily and drys quickly. One of the best products Revlon has ever produced.  Revlon ColorStay Liquid Liner

     

    9. The cheapest blackest drugstore liquid liner on the market . The liquid formula is out of this world. It’s really creamy so applying it is effortless. I would highly recommend using this liner to practise if your new to liquid liners. It has a short handle for accurate applications. Great all around product. NYC New York Color Liquid Eyeliner

    If you think you found the best BLACK eyeliner , leave a comment below!







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    BEAUTY

    8 Essential Brushes

    Let’s talk brushes!

    You can buy the most expensive makeup on the market, but if you don’t have the proper tools to apply that makeup, it’s useless. Makeup brushes are the most important product in your makeup collection.  Since there are so many out there I’ve compiled a list of 8 Essential Makeup Brushes that you need to have in your makeup bag right now!






    Real Techniques Powder Brush

    This brush is used to dust powder on your face. Using a brush to apply powder vs using a puff will save you a lot of product and you’ll achieve a more natural look. The brush has synthetic bristles, is hand-cut and 100% cruelty-free. I like that it’s a fluffy brush and allows for even distribution of the product on to the face.  I really love this RT brush. I would say I’m kind of a super fan. I own all of the RT brushes and use them often. Makeup artists and YouTube stars Samantha and Nicola Chapman, also known as PixiWoo, are behind the successful line ( they’re sisters as well)! The best part is this is such a high quality brush and it only costs $15. Another brush I recommend and I’m sure a lot of you have seen this brush before is the MAC 134 brush, $63. 


    Sigma F80 Flat Kabuki Brush

    This brush can be used to apply liquid or cream foundation. The F80 brush doesn’t absorb product due to it’s soft but dense bristles. I personally like to use this brush to apply cream foundation. I can build the coverage up without any streaking on my face . I prefer to pat the foundation onto my skin first and then in a buffing motion distribute the product all over. This brush allows me to do this effortlessly and leaves me with airbrushed smooth finish, $30 CAD. Another foundation brush that I find works really well with liquid or cream foundation is BareMineral Buffing Brush, $35.

     
     
    I use this brush in the morning when I’m in a hurry to get out the door. Because of the large flat fibre bristles I’m able to cover more space quickly but still achieve an even and flawless coat of liquid foundation. Some flat foundation brushes will give you a “streaky” look when you’re working quickly but I haven’t experienced any streaks with this brush. I use MUF large foundation brush mostly with liquid foundation, $41. A budget-friendly foundation brush is the Sigma F60, $26.
     
     
    Another RT brush! This blush brush ( say that 10 times fast! ) is very soft and picks up the perfect amount of blush. I love the cut of the brush as it sits really nicely on your cheeks and allows for a smooth application with one swipe. I’ve washed this brush a few times and it didn’t shed and dried very quickly. This RT blush brush gets the job done, $11.14. An alternate blush brush that I also enjoy using is the MAC 116 Blush Brush, $42.



    Sephora Pro Bronzer Brush

    This is a great versatile brush. It can be used to apply liquid or cream foundation as well as bronzer. The synthetic bristles are soft yet dense enough to give you a smooth and natural glow. I love this brush so much that I’m not quite sure what I was using before the Sephora Pro Bronzer, $45.

     
     
    This is my new favourite concealer brush. My sis-in law introduced me to it  ( Hi Foots!!). I have been in love with it since the first use. I use it to colour correct or conceal under eye dark circles or redness. The short synthetic bristles are great for buffing the concealer onto the skin and you can build up the coverage from light to heavy. The only downside to this brush is the long handle. Besides that, I highly recommend the Sephora Pro Airbrush Concealer Brush, $30. Another great concealer brush is the MAC 266 Duo Fibre Tapered Blending Brush, $38.50. This brush is marketed as eyeshadow blending brush but trust me you can use it as a concealer brush as well!
     
     
    This was the very first brush I ever bought! In the past 15 years, I’ve owned 2 of these brushes. Yes , if taken care of properly this brush will last a long time! This brush is superb for blending several cream or powder eye shadows together on the crease but can also be used to apply and shade shadows. Because of it’s versatility and longevity the MAC 217 brush is worth the investment, $28.50.
     


    This is the only brush I’ve ever used for eyeliner. It’s always worked for me so I never needed a reason to look for a comparable brush. I use it with Makeup Forever gel eyeliner. The synthetic fibres are very firm so you’re almost guaranteed a perfect wing every time and the angle on the brush let’s you experiment easily with different wing shapes. To save on costs I also use this brush to fill in my eyebrows. It works beautifully with any eyebrow powder product. For its versatility and ease of use I would recommend picking up the MAC 263 Angle Brush, $20.


    Leave me a comment below if there is a brush that you have in you collection and cannot live without! 





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    BEAUTY

    Splurge vs Save

    Hi Beauties

    I hope you’re all doing great! Sorry I’ve been MIA for a little bit on the blog. I have been so busy with the kids, school activities and soccer! School is coming to an end in 2 days……YAY!!!! I think I’m more excited than the kids. Who else needs a break from making lunches in the morning and getting homework done in a reasonable time ? All that to say …. I hope I’ll be contributing more to my blog.

    I was really bad this weekend and went on a makeup shopping spree ( I’ll do a post about what I bought later this week ) ! I left Sephora feeling well … a bit ashamed of my self ( not really! ) but I knew that spending this much money on makeup was just ridiculous but I still did. That got me thinking;  I have so many dupes in my makeup kit that I use on clients and on myself, why not share them with you all!  I mean everyone likes to save money right ? So here is my first Splurge vs Save  list on my blog. This isn’t my complete list but these are some “Save “items that I’ve tried and I feel are very comparable to their “Splurge” item . Don’t  get me wrong  I love my Name Brand items but sometimes a girls gotta save for a rainy day! You know what I mean?  🙂 If you have any dupes of your own, leave me a comment below. I’m always on the look out for new dupe to try out.

    Side note: For those who are new to beauty blogs, a dupe is short for duplicate and it’s used in the beauty world to describe a cheaper copy of a high end item.

    Splurge 
    DIOR Foundation
    CHANEL MÉDITERRANÉE LE VERNIS NAIL COLOUR
    MAC Fix +
    Studio Mac Tech
    MAC Angel Lipstick
    Bobbi Brown Gel Liner
    MAC #34 lashes
    Lancome Hypnose Mascara
    Clinique All About Eyes Serum

    Save
    No 7 BOOTS Foundation
    Sally Hansen Triple Shine Nail Polish
    E.L.F. Mist Spray
    NYX Stay MATTE not FLAT Powder Foundation
    Revlon Super Lustrous Primrose Lipstick
    Maybelline Eye Studio Gel Liner
    Ardell #105 Lashes
    Maybelline Rocket Express Mascara
    Garnier De-puffer eye roller

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    BEAUTY

    Part 3: Summer Essentials – Hair

    Hello!

    I’m back with part 3 of my 3 part Summer essentials post. I hope you’ve enjoyed my posts so far. This time we’re talking hair 🙂  Now, I’m not a hairdresser or hair guru by any means,  but I do know what I like for my hair. Here are 4 of my hair essentials that I always use and can’t do without for the Summer months! Enjoy!

     
    Hair Products

    1. Bumble and bumble Surf Spray!

    Hot summer days call for surfer babe waves! Ooh that’s catchy  🙂  Forget about the flat iron and blow outs this summer.  Think Giselle Bundchen beach wave look for Summer 2015!  Surf Spray is a salt infused styling spray which can be applied to dry or damp hair (I prefer damp) to give you the wavy beach look. It  adds volume and texture to your hair without weighing it down and its super easy to use. Apply the spray evenly to damp hair from root to ends,  then use a diffuser or hair dryer to dry your hair at the root.  You can leave your hair at this point or further enhance the waves by using a 1″ curling iron. Once hair is lightly curled, run your fingers through your hair several times to loosen the curls completely, You can apply the Surf Spray again if you wish.

    2. Rare Blend Oil Total Hair Therapy

    If you have frizzy, damaged, coloured or chemically processed hair then you’re in need of some Oil hair treatment. Ojon is a company that no one in my circle of friends knew about until I started to rave about their products. I discovered this brand while watching the shopping network at 2 am. The company states that  ” this oil will help nourish, repair and transform dull and damaged hair and give you  glossy healthy shine with only 1 drop”. I have to admit, one drop doesn’t do it for me. 2 drops is more then adequate for medium to long hair.  You will most definitely see a transformation from dull hair to healthy shine hair with 2 applications of Rare Blend Oil. These oils were cultivated from Tahiti to the Kalahari Desert. I use Rare Blend religiously after I wash my hair and before styling. Add 2 drops in your palm and apply it all over your hair. Style as usual. It makes my hair feel  soft and glossy without weighing it down. I like the fact that this Oil treatment doesn’t have to be heated up or washed out of the hair.  Rare Belnd Oil and other Ojon products can be bought at Sephora and Ulta.

    3. L’Oreal Hair Expertise EverPure Color UV Protect Spray


    The kids and I are always outside in the hot Summer days, so I was looking for something ( besides a hat) to protect my hair from sun damage. Now why should I care about sun protection for my hair you ask? Good question ! According to Good Housekeeping Magazine  “The sun affects hair just like it affects skin.The sun dehydrates hair, leaving it brittle and prone to split ends. It can also fade your hair, which is what makes your colour turn brassy”. Ain’t nobody got time for brassy hair!!. The L’Oreal EverPure UV protect spray provides SPF 25 protection. You can apply it to damp or dry hair. It’s inexpensive and easy to use. This EverPure line also carries shampoo and conditioner with SPF protection as well.

    4. Aveda Sun Care

    Along with the L’Oreal Color UV protect spray, the Aveda sun care masque is another must have product if you are out in the sun too long . In my case,  I use this hair masque after I’ve been in chlorine water. Chlorine is very damaging to my curly coarse hair.  I apply the masque in the shower , leave it on for 2-3 minutes and then rinse it off. I notice my hair after every use just feels healthy, soft and shiny. The Sun Care masque is very creamy and smells divine!! It’s infused with 100% certified organic essences of neroli, ylang ylang and cistus.  Just love it!

    Thank you Beauties !!

    I love hearing from my readers so please do post a comment or question. ! I love reading them and responding.

    P.S.  I wanted to ensure that all my readers understood that I am in NO WAY paid for these reviews. I spend my own money to purchase these items and I choose to write an honest review. These are not sponsored posts.

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    BEAUTY

    Part 2: Summer Essentials – MakeUp

     

    Hi Beauties 🙂

    I’m back with Part 2 of my 3 Part Summer Essentials Post. Before I continue with the post, I wanted to Thank you all for your supportive comments via Intstagram (@MakeupByMahaMatar) and e-mail (MakeUpByMahaMatar@gmail.com). It means a lot to me and encourages me to keep going. This blogging business is so very new to me and I’m learning so much along the way,  so THANK YOU 🙂



    Makeup Products

     
    1. Clinique Perfectly Real Makeup

    If you read my last post  ( of course you did!!) you know that I love my BB creams for Summer time, but there will be days when I want or need a little bit more coverage so I reach for my Clinique Perfectly Real Makeup foundation! This stuff is so lightweight and feels like I have nothing on. It covers beautifully, has a very natural looking finish and comes in 17 shades so your bound to find a perfect match. My only suggestion when wearing this foundation is to lightly powder over it to make it last all day. 


    2. Rimmel London Natural-bronzer

    On one of my frequent trips to the local drugstore I was lured into the cosmetics aisle by a well lit and beautifully placed display (darn displays get me every time!!). To my surprise it was a Rimmel display and the bronzer’s were the first thing I noticed. I wasn’t in need of a new bronzer but thought for $6.00 why not, and added it to my shopping cart. I have always been loyal to  this bronzer but I have to say the Rimmel bronzer has become a favourite in my makeup routine. I picked up Sun Bronze ( I have olive skin tone).  It has a slight shimmer but nothing too crazy and the texture is very soft. It’s easy to apply and feels good on my skin. It gives me that sun kissed glow and the small amount of shimmer that this bronzer contains is a very nice touch! I wear it on my cheeks and around my hairline. Again, there is a slight shimmer with this bronzer so if you contour with your bronzer,  I wouldn’t recommend using this bronzer for contouring. It is best if you purchase a full Matte bronzer. Oh yeah it also contains SPF!


    (Just a tip….your bronzer should be 1 to 2 shades darker than your natural skin tone).
     
     
    I have to say NARS is one of my favourite cosmetics brand.From their creamy under eye concealer to their lip glosses they can do no wrong. This blush is no exception. It’s a winner! It truly suits every skin tone and looks good on everyone. It gives you that hint of a natural flush making it ideal for everyday use. It can be layered with other blushes for an intensified look if your going out on the town. To be honest , I love this blush for all seasons not just Summer!

    In the Summer I tend to not wear lipstick , except for weddings or a night out with the hubby. I feel more” Summer ready ” with a nice gloss on my lips like the NYX extreme lip creams . These creams have taken on a life of their own. Everyone that uses them raves about them, including me!  The colour payoff of these glosses is phenomenal. NYX calls these lip creams a  hybrid of lipstick and lip gloss with intense pigmentation all-in-one”. I couldn’t agree more. They are highly pigmented, silky , long wearing for a lip cream/gloss and are easy to apply. But I have to say the  biggest bonus of all is that they are extremely affordable. I believe in Canada they sell for $4.99. That’s a great deal for the quality of these products. In Ottawa, you can buy these lip creams and other NYX products at Rexall or at www.nyxcosmetics.com. My favourite are Dolly Girl and Natural. 


    5. SEPHORA COLLECTION Mixed Metals Baked Eye and Face Palette

    This  9 shadows in this metallic palette can be worn wet or dry. There are 2 blushes  as well as a highlighter. You can layer the shadows if you want an intense look or keep it simple with one colour on the lid.  Copper and Shale are such unique colours and  I love pairing them together!This palette is easy to carry around and so versatile. I definitley have gotten good use out of it so far. I can’t forget to mention what a good value this palette is. Definitly worth having in your Summer makeup collection

    6. EOS Organic Lipbalm

    Who hasn’t heard or tried EOS organic Lipbalm ? These cute sphere ( or egg heads, as my daughter likes to call them) shaped balms are definitely a big hit with anyone that likes to have silky smooth lips.  According to the company these lip balms are “95% organic, 100% natural, paraben and petrolatum free”. They lock in moisture and contain Shea butter. I use these babies all year round. I have them everywhere;  at the office, in the car, in my purse, in my gym bag……..everywhere!! They are perfect for carrying around in my cross body and whenever my lips are feeling dry, these egg heads save the day!

     
    Thank you Beauties for checking out my post. 

    Part 3 coming soon!

    Check me out on instagram @MakeUpByMahaMatar
     
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