Winter Beauty Routine

I wouldn’t call myself a beauty junkie yet I know some women who are – they have loads of products in their bathrooms, always seem to know exactly which product to use and when and always have their face “on” so to speak. As of late, I have less time to apply my usual make-up. Not to sound like a broken “mom record” but it’s become the reality of my situation so I have my go-to make-up routine which is a shorter all-star list of products that I try not to go without and then there’s the full monty make-up routine which is my full line up of products that I love. There are days when I do have the luxury of time (when A is home for the weekend or I have completed the perfectly timed nap) and happily apply the full monty.

My approach to skincare these days with the cold, dry weather we are currently experiencing is hydration, hydration, hydration. I’m injecting (and drinking!) as much water into my skin as possible. For my birthday, I had a lovely facial at my favourite spa, Miraj Hammam Spa by Caudalie. Not only do I love the serene moroccan inspired space but I love their products. A product the aesthetician used was this serum and I loved how it added another layer of moisture even before my regular moisturizer. I’ve also been adding a sheet mask to my weekly regime. I love how this one leaves my skin feeling almost jelly-like (but in a good way!).

SKINCARE: Left to Right 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6

MAKEUP :: Left to Right 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10

This is the full-monty of my make-up range. It’s funny how I normally don’t think I use that many products but when it’s laid out like so, it appears like a lot. I mainly focus on good, even skin (hence the concentration on hydration in my skincare) and the eyes. The eyes are where it’s at these days for and the main focus is on hiding my tired bags and making them bright. I haven’t strayed from my YSL Touche Eclat for years yet I never would have thought to use this Tarte Fake Awake Eye-Liner that I put in the inner corners of my eyes to make them appear more awake (smart name of the product, right?). Another gem from this line up is this Laura Mercier Eye-Shadow primer. I normally wear a barely there shadow and found that generally by the end of the day it went from barely there to definitely not there so I figured it was time to add a layer that would make it last all day. This product does this while also brightening so it’s a win-win!


Cadillac of hair dryers

2015-01-26_10-24-46  T3 Featherlight 2

This year, I’m all about up’ing my beauty game, apparently. As I recently shared, I received the Clarisonic for Christmas and simultaneously over the holidays my hair dryer died. That’s never happened to me before! Usually I lose it during travel or I’m looking I need to upgrade the styling accessories that come with it but it just died in my hands mid blow-out. Kind of sad and dramatic actually! So after doing a little research and reading up on what my go-to beauty advisors had to say, I decided on pulling on the trigger on the cadillac of all hair dryers – the T3 Featherlight 2. The Beauty Department had some great info including a glossary which really came in handy and I would reference them if you are ever in the market.

This dryer came with a whole lot of claims including a 73% reduction in frizz that I was more than skeptical about but I have to say, I did noticed a difference. This is coming from someone who normally heads to their local Shoppers Drug Mart and picked up the cheapest dryer that comes with the diffuser attachment. I’m sure there are a number of different reasons as to why I noticed less frizz that are quite technical but all I can say is that instead of blowing my hair around in any which direction (even with the styling accessory that is supposed to prevent this!) – the T3 somehow avoided that certainly reduced the amount of flyaways.

When you think of making investments in your beauty routine, I guess you really have to think about the cost per use and since you generally use your dyer at least once a week that overall number shrinks quite dramatically. I’m happy I made the choice I did!


Fresh faced

DSC_0042 This year for Christmas, I received a Clarisonic! It was on the old wishlist for a while and I’m so happy about it being in my bathroom. To be completely honest, I was a skeptic at first. I’m a huge fan of facials at the salon – but was this device really necessary? Did people really notice a difference in their skin? After chatting with a couple of user and reading the multiple stories on this skin care revolution I felt that I just needed to try it out myself. As it turns out – I’m in love with the thing. No, I don’t see a drastic different in my skin tone but the feeling, oh the feeling of my face is different after I use it and I love it. Don’t you ever feel that your cleanser just isn’t doing enough?

DSC_0054 DSC_0058 DSC_0072 DSC_0091 Since the turn of the New Year, I’ve not only attempted to declutter my loft but also my skin care and beauty products. I finally threw away those old lipsticks that I rarely used, rid my cupboards of any make-up samples that I’ve held onto “in case” and trying new skin care products. I’ve recently found my new favourite moisturizer but I’ve been looking for a new mask and cleanser for a while now. Over the break was the perfect time to test out the masks since I had some extra time on my hinds that I could really pamper my skin. I tried out some cheapies from the drug store and to no surprise, I was less than impressed.  I’ve recently tried the Fresh Umbrian Clay Mask and loved it. It meets all the criteria for a mask that I enjoy: hardening, easily washes off, multi-functional (detoxifying and can also be used as a cleanser) and not strongly scented. I’m also trying out the Fresh Soy Cleanser and Lotus Eye Gel. It feels nice to have a new skin regime underway. Nothing like gearing up your face for the force of winter!


Bold Lip

1 (Available at Joe Fresh locations)//2//3 (available in drugstores across Canada)//4 NARS Heatwave
Let me preface this post with “I’m not a beauty expert” but I’m more a beauty enthusiast – if you will. If there was one part of a beauty routine that I admire most, it would be the bold lip. I love how it adds that punch and can really allow you to appear more pulled together even if your hair is a mess and the rest of your make up is barely there (in fact that’s the best situation for a bold lip!). Some days I will be sitting at my desk, maybe in an afternoon lull and I’ll think to myself – I need to put a lip on. Below I share my steps on how I achieve my version of the bold lip.
The SECRET WEAPON – the other steps listed are optional but this one really provides the best base for your colour.
Use a little bit of the Lip Polish on clean, dry lips and wipe off with a tissue. Then use a lip moisturizer, I choose Enydrial Repair Lip Care because it’s moisturizing for dry, chapped or damaged lips. Specially formulated and tested by dermatologists to moisturize, protect, nourish, soothe and repair dry skin. There’s nothing worse than applying a beautiful colour on chapped lips.
The liner – Oh how it reminds me of the 90’s! Remember when women used to place a dark liner around their lips – yuck! That is certainly something you don’t want. The great thing about liner is that it doesn’t need to be the exact same shade as your lip colour. It really helps your lip colour stay put and helps prevent the ring of fire.
Now it’s colour time! When doing a bolder lip look I like to ensure that it covers ever inch of my lip’s surface.

Beauty Chapter: Winter Skin

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a lovely weekend – I sure had the best one yet for 2014.
I had a weekend full of celebrations for turning another year older. January is a hard time for birthdays, generally people are burnt out from the holidays and are either hibernating or swearing off celebrating for a while but I’m learning to love the timing of my birthday! I’m happy to let the good times roll after Christmas and my fiancé certainly made it special.

One of my birthday celebrations was treating myself to a day at the spa which included a facial. I used to think that they were silly. I mean, I could cleanse, exfoliate and moisturize my face without having to fork up the dough but what I discovered is that you can actually learn from them. Putting aside the fact that they may be pushing their spa’s products on you, I’m always interested in hearing what they have to say while my skin is under the magnifying glass. I realized that I have been using the incorrect moisturizer (and tinted moisturizer!) this whole time. It’s kind of embarrassing because I have worked in a skin care store, also with skin care – yet I never realized that there were differently based moisturizers, oil and water. I also learned that this may be the reason why around 4:00pm in the afternoon, my face would feel a little extra oily, more specifically my T-zone. Since winter is such a crucial time for adding moisture to your skin, I felt the urgency to up up my routine.

I skipped the spa line of skin care and then set out to find a new moisturizer that is based with water. I like to use brands that can be found within the drugstore because when you are in a pinch, you know that they will be there for you! Paying attention to ingredients and wanting something that included natural elements (also keeping in mind my age) – I went home with some products from Korres. It was a bit of a risk since I barely knew anything about the brand and it wasn’t a cheap purchase. I opted for a Antiaging & Antiwrinkle Firming Face serum, Antiaging & Antiwrinkle Mattifying Fluid Texture Lotion and heavier cream for the evening, Greek Youghurt Moisturizing Face Cream.
I’ve been really pleased with these products. I was nervous that using both the serum, lotion and then my tinted moisturizer on top of it all would leave me with the same problem I have been having. I enjoy that they are fragrant but it’s very subtle. Yes, they are a bit pricey but if you are going to invest in something, I think your face should be up there.

So tell me, what is your winter skin care routine? Any tips?


Eye definers

Coming from someone that doesn’t always wear all that much eye make-up, I love a perfectly defined eye. A beautifully shaped, sharp cat-eye? Meow. The question is – what is the best liquid liner? There’s no doubt that liquid trumps pencil and I’ve tried the brush and paint pot thing but have you tried packing that brush? I turned to google in search of the best, dark pigment yet smudge proof but there’s no better way to determine than to try them yourself. And so, I bring you my review of three different liquid eye liners in three different price ranges.



1. L’Oreal Lineur Intense Brush Tip – They say you never forget your first and this was the liner that my mom used and thus, the first eye liner I used. The brush is nice and long but still allows for maximum control. I also find that this liner really stays for hours on end which is perfect for plans in the P.M. It’s also a drugstore find so if you are ever in a bind you can sure this won’t be a waste of money.


2. MAC Liquid Eye Liner – MAC is brand you can always trust when it comes to make up and this liner is an example of why. the applicator provides a nice handle for your hand (which is important for that slick line). A little more pricey than L’Oreal however this little pot is deceiving as it lasts a long time.


3. Lancome Artliner – It’s all about the tip on this one. Uniquely made with a foam tip versus a brush really allows little room for error and an extended handle provides extra control. I hate to say it – but this one was my favourite but unfortunately the most expensive.

What is your favourite liquid liner?


Scrunchie 2.0


Although the scrunchie is more scarce than ever, (confession: I have one that I use time to time, it was from Jacob Jr. and I just can’t let go) the idea that they could effortlessly tie your hair up without leaving a line on your freshly washed mane is an idea that I can get behind. Enter, scrunchie 2.0 or more simply known as, hair ties. I love these ties for the same reason I loved scrunchies, they provide a light hold for up-dos while adding a hint of colour and again, don’t provide you with nasty ring around your head when you take your hair down. If you’re anything like me, your hair is up one minute and down the next. Obviously, J.Crew carries them in the perfect shades of Summer Solids and Fall Neutrals.

hair ties

::J.Crew – $12.50 per pack::

hair ties2


Health Hut Boutique


Don’t you love it when someone you know, someone you have known for a long time does something great? Well, I do and this someone is Tara Miller. She bravely opened up the Health Hut Boutique and Online store all on her own. If you cottage in Muskoka then you most certainly need to stop by her store in Port Carling. It’s the perfect spot to recharge with some non-toxic, luxurious beauty and health products. It’s also just adorable to look at and the scent of lavender is so welcoming.



After learning more about the products that she has to offer and the benefits of using them, it was impossible to walk away without picking something up to try. One line that had caught my eye was Ta Ta Harper. After reading rave reviews of this line which originated in Vermont that features only 100% natural products, I was tempted to try. I picked up the Replenishing Nutrient Complex and I have to say, it’s pretty phenomenal. It’s a little pricey for my usual skin care routine however if there is something to invest it, it should be the skin you’re in.


What type of skin care products do you rave about?


Currently Loving…

This cream by Aerin Lauder.

Aerin Lauder
I believe I first saw it in a magazine and was immediately drawn to the packaging of course. I’m such a sucker for pretty packaging, but once I smelt the product, I was sold instantly. It smells like summer and what better way to smell? After you application, it leaves a slight, subtle shimmer which is perfect during those summer months when you are mostly in an office. The even more interesting thing about this cream is that you can use it in your hair, similar to how you would for a hair mask. I haven’t attempted that (I have interesting hair that doesn’t respond well to a lot of product use in the shower) however, I imagine that it would make your hair smell fantastic. This cream is limited edition so head to a store close to you to snag one before they are gone!

Image via
Available where Aerin Lauder is sold.


Summer Beauty Lineup

Hurrah – it’s summer!

Around this time of year, I like to go back to basics when it comes to my makeup routine.
Sticking to the essentials such as SPF and a great black mascara, below I share some of my faves for summer.

Summer Beauty Line Up

From left to right:

YSL Touche Eclat: This little gem is perfect for lightening up! Using around your eyes, the light seems to bounce right off your skin.

MAC Zoomlash Mascara in Extreme Black: You would think that sticking to a brown would be more natural and or appropriate but theres nothing more that I love than some slick, black lashes on tanned skin.

Sugar Lip Treatment SPF 15 in Coral: Who doesn’t love lip treatment that adds a splash of colour while protecting from sun damage? This stick will be in my purse all summer long.

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20: It provides just enough coverage while also moisturizing your skin. Good makeup starts with good skin.

Nars Bronzer in Laguna: I normally use a matte bronzer since I feel that sometimes the shimmer can make my face look oily. Not this bronzer. It serves the right about of shimmer to give you that coveted summer glow.


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