March beauty essentials: This month’s best beauty buys

This month’s beauty essentials hold the promise that spring is on its way! Here’s what’s new in foundation, primer and bright colour compacts

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MAC Isabel and Ruben Toledo

Cuban-American design power couple Isabel and Ruben Toledo have joined forces with MAC to create a limited-edition collection  inspired by their renowned affinity for colour and illustration. Each item, which ranges from lip gloss to makeup brushes, features Ruben's whimsical illustrations on rare blanc slate packaging. We especially love the ombré blush compacts, which are perfect for swirling on some of our own much-needed chroma after a long Canadian whiteout.

MAC Blush Ombre in Azalea Blossom, $39

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Makeup primer

Optimize the benefits of any foundation by first applying a primer. "Depending on your skin concerns, you can apply the primer as a spot treatment only in the areas where you need it. Or, if you want to make your foundation more efficient, apply a quarter-size amount all over, starting from the middle of your face and working out," says Trinidad Rivas, national education manager for Make Up For Ever Canada. For the fastest and most efficient application, use a brush or a makeup sponge to apply the primer with short downward strokes. "If you have sensitive skin, use a soft-bristled brush and gently press and roll it onto the skin to get the smoothest finish," says Rivas.

Dull? Add radiance with crushed white sapphire.
Wet n Wild CoverAll Primer, $6

Cakey? Smooth dry skin with hyaluronic acid and glycerine.
Make Up For Ever Step 1 Skin Equalizer Hydrating Primer, $42

Shiny? Wear under or over makeup for a matte finish.
Revlon PhotoReady Prime + Anti-Shine Balm, $18

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Canadian dream cream

Skin feeling a little parched? Slather on this Made In Canada dream cream. Its star ingredient is antioxidant superpower Labrador Tea, but it also contains a master mix of three additional Canadian plants to fight wrinkles and improve radiance.

Lise Watier Age Control Supreme La Crème Sublime, $105

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Round-the-clock foundation coverage

For 10 hour coverage:
Sephora Collection 10 HR Wear Perfection Foundation, $25
Hyaluronic acid helps this buildable formula go on silky smooth while concealing scars, fine lines and wrinkles.

For 16 hour coverage:
Nars All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation, $57
Fragrance-free and lightweight, this foundation targets redness and other discolouration and comes in 20 shades to ensure you'll find the perfect match.

For 24 hour coverage:
Elizabeth Arden Flawless Finish Perfectly Satin 24HR Liquid Makeup SPF 15, $47
This velvet-finish formula with nourishing vitamin E helps control shine, even under the toughest conditions. Heat and humidity, beware.