If you're anything like me, then you love—LOVE!—the thrill of a niche beauty find.
Imagine an entire store filled with niche beauty brands, and you've got Murale, Canada's beauty destination.
Of course, they carry all the usual suspects, too. They've got your Chanel, your NARS, your YSL, and your Bobbi Brown, Benefit, Lancôme, Clarins, Guerlain and Shiseido—to name just a few of their dozens of prestige brands.
But as a beauty nerd, I get extra-excited about the stuff that's a little more unique, a little harder to find. (Except not anymore, because Murale has six stores across Canada and offers online shopping at Murale.ca, too.)
If you've never been to one of their beautiful, spacious stores, you MUST! Give yourself at least an hour, as not only will you be dazzled by the sheer array of beauty products, but you can also stay for an esthetic treatment in their state-of-the-art private skincare centre, get a brow touch-up or even a makeup lesson.
To see what I'm talking about, check out this video (starring yours truly plus my friends BeautyGeeks and Beautezine):
Told you: it's a beauty destination.
Today, I want to tell you about some of my favourite niche brands that Murale carries, and my top picks for what to buy:
1. Tata Harper
I couldn't be more excited that this luxe natural beauty brand is now more accessible in Canada. Everything is handmade in Vermont and is 100 percent natural and non-toxic. I love that it's all packaged in glass, not plastic bottles.
My pick: The Aromatic Stress Treatment is a blend of essential oils like rose, neroli and frankincense. It's meant for aromatherapy, but I'd even wear this as fragrance!
2. Eve Lom
This luxury skincare brand has a major cult and celebrity following, and finally we Canadians can get our hands on it (Murale is the exclusive retailer here). At the Toronto and Ottawa stores, you can also book in for the Eve Lom Radiance Facial, which includes deep cleansing and acupressure massage to get skin glowing.
My pick: Vogue described the original Cleanser as "probably the best cleanser in the world." It's the foundation of the entire line and gets off even the most stubborn makeup.
3. enVy Pillow
This Canadian-born brand is my most recent obsession. Their perfectly contoured pillows prevent your face from forming "sleep wrinkles," and provide proper neck support and spinal alignment. Plus, your skincare products stay on your face, not on your pillowcase.
My pick: The Anti-Aging/Wellness Pillow, which is the original. But I love it so much, I may need to invest in the travel version, too!
This science-driven line was developed by a husband-and-wife team and uses cutting-edge anti-aging skincare technology. I'm super-excited that they're recently delved into skin makeup, including cushion compacts (predicted to be the next BB craze!).
My pick: The Aqua BB cushion compact provides hydration with lightweight, buildable coverage in a luminous finish.
5. Nest Fragrances
My love for niche beauty products includes niche fragrances, and Nest's array of luxurious scents are totally up my alley. Not only do they smell amazing and unique, but they've also got the most beautiful fragrance packaging I've ever seen.
6. June Jacobs Spa Collection
I love skincare brands that marry science with nature, and that's exactly what you get with this luxury spa line. Everything is based on high concentrations of botanical extracts, and the formulas are free of parabens, preservatives, synthetic dyes and sulfates. At the Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa stores, you can also treat yourself to either the Papaya Enzyme Facial or the Age Defying Hydrating Facial.
My pick: The Age Defying Copper Serum is for normal to combination/oily skin types, and contains copper peptides—one of the hottest anti-aging ingredients right now amongst skincare junkies.
I'm pretty sure I made an audible gasp when I first saw this French natural skincare brand at Murale. I fell in love it in my ELLE days for its high quality formulas, gorgeous packaging and botanical scents.
My pick: There's no better way to start your morning than with the Mandarin Body Wash, scented with tangerine peel oil and silky-smooth on your skin.
8. Mirrors by Danielle Creations
This Canadian brand manufactures the best beauty mirrors I've ever seen. They look great in your bathroom or bedroom, are super-sturdy, and the magnification powers are simply amazing. You'll never goof up your makeup looking into one of these.
My pick: The 2 Sided Lit Mirror has lights to perfectly illuminate your face, and features 10 times the magnification on one side.
9. Tx Smile
This teeth-whitening range was developed by a Canadian doctor and pharmacist, and it gets results without causing sensitivity. All the stores also offer Tx Smile Teeth Whitening treatments, which can lighten the colour of your teeth up to six shades in just 15 minutes.
My pick: I love that the Teeth Whitening Pen can be used on-the-go, and will whiten your smile by up to six shades in as little as a week.
Beauty starts from the inside, and these portable glass bottles with colourful silicone sleeves are a safe—and fashionable!—way to stay hydrated all day. They're leak-proof, BPA-free and phthalate-free, and you can even pop 'em in the dishwasher.
My pick: The bkr Holiday is the prettiest mint green.