Jewelry

What I’ve Been Loving Lately…

It’s been a while since my last post, and I couldn’t be more excited to get back into the swing of things!  The products I’ve discovered these past few months are some of my all-time favourites, and I hope you’ll love them, too!

1. MantraBand “Smile, Breath, and Go Slowly” Bracelet

I discovered MantraBand during a trip to the USA this past summer.  Being someone who loves motivational quotes, I was immediately intrigued by these bracelets, which are sleek and simple in design (available in silver, rose gold, or yellow gold), and adorn various fun, inspirational messages.  In particular, I was drawn to the saying, “Smile, Breath, and Go Slowly“.  The MantraBand website describes this bracelet as a reminder to, “Remember to focus on one thing at a time and give it your all. Stay calm, look on the bright side, and keep going. Because it’s all about the journey, not the destination.”  I, like many others, often times find myself rushing to get things done, and I can easily forget to slow down and enjoy the process.  Naturally, I’m now hooked on these bracelets and have a handful of others on my wishlist: “Hakuna Matata“, “Ohana“, and “Que Sera Sera“, just to name a few!

2. L’Oreal Paris Hair Expertise Extraordinary Clay Shampoo and Conditioner

I’ve waited a long time for an affordable shampoo and conditioner that were specially formulated for oily roots, and guess what?  It’s finally arrived! L’Oreal’s Extraordinary Clay line is perfect for those who have hair the equivalent to “combination skin”: an oily scalp, with ends that could use some love.  These products use the power of various clays (white, blue, and green) to cleanse, moisturize, and revitalize the hair and scalp, leaving hair balanced for up to 72 hours!  The shampoo lathers beautifully and leaves your hair and scalp feeling clean and refreshed, and the conditioner is super moisturizing and lightweight.  Oh, and both products smell amazing.  Using the shampoo and conditioner, I noticed a difference in my hair within just two uses.  Next on my list to try is the Pre-Shampoo Clay Mask.

3. Benefit Cosmetics Dallas Box o’Powder Blush

I’d always heard great things about Benefit Cosmetic’s boxed blushes, but had never actually purchased or tried one for myself.  I decided it was time to hop on the bandwagon, and chose the shade “Dallas” (described as a rosy-bronze hue).  Trust me, the shade you see in the box does not do this product justice.  Once applied, it wears as a gorgeous, warm bronze that gives you a healthy glow, and is perfect for Fall.  You can even use it as a bronzer, or to contour, and it suits nearly every skin tone.

4. Quo Effortless Curl Mascara in “Black”

I’m someone who’s lucky enough to have long lashes naturally, but if I don’t use the right mascara, they just fall flat and can end up looking sparse.  I’m therefore always on the lookout for affordable options that give volume and hold curl.  I received this particular mascara in a gift bag from a Quo event, and was hooked after trying it just once.  The formula is glossy and super pigmented, the curved silicone brush adds curl, and it apples clump-free and lasts all day.  This mascara easily compares to high-end versions, and is just a fraction of the price. Definitely recommend!

5. Michael Kors Eau de Parfum in “Sexy Amber”

This is a perfume that has been on my wishlist for a long time, but due to it’s higher-than-average price tag, I always hesitated.  When Shoppers Drug Mart hosted their recent redeem your points event, I decided to finally take the plunge.  First off, this product is an Eau de Parfum, meaning a little bit goes a long way (making it a good value for money). It comes in a gorgeous glass bottle with gold accents, and the signature Michael Kors logo.  The scent itself has notes of warm amber, sandalwood, and white flowers.  It’s warm and musky but still feminine, and it’s perfect for the colder months ahead.

6. Bath and Body Works Ultra Shea Body Cream in “Golden Pear & Brown Sugar”

Surprise! Another warm, musky scent that I can’t get enough of.  Until it was recently discontinued, Bath and Body Works’ “Twilight Woods” was always one of my favourites.  However their new scent, “Golden Pear & Brown Sugar” has now replaced it as my number one.  It has notes of almond creme, Bartlett pear, brown sugar, toasted hazelnut, silken vanilla, and decadent pistachio mousse (hungry yet?).  It’s a pretty, sexy scent, but is also subtle and not overpowering.  I pair the shower gel in the same scent with the Ultra Shea Body Cream for an extra scent boost.  Note to self: stock up on this before it’s gone!

What have you been loving lately?  Let me know in the comments below!

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When life gives you lemons…

I first learned of ILYMIX when I came about their account on Instagram, and was drawn to their pictures of beautiful, bold statement necklaces and earrings.  This one in particular stood out to me: it’s bright, fun, and kind of reminds me of something Kate Spade would release.  I love the adorable lemons and lemon slices paired with starfishes and pearls (I mean, it pretty much screams Summer).

I paired mine with a J.Crew Factory sweater, American Eagle jeggings, and Payless Shoe Source pumps (shown below).


I definitely recommend checking out ILYMIX.  Their products are reasonably priced, ship quickly, and are of good quality.  There are tons of other items on my wishlist, from sunglasses, to scarves, to bracelets (and how cute is this watermelon clutch!?).  If you’re interested in making a purchase, ILYMIX has generously offered to give my readers 20% off your purchase: just use the code Elyse20.  Happy shopping!

*Note: Necklace provided for consideration.  All thoughts and opinions are honest and are my own.

Year-End Gift Ideas for Teachers Featuring Foxy Originals (+Giveaway!)

When I learned that one of my favourite Canadian jewelry brands, Foxy Originals, created a teacher-inspired collection, I just knew I had to share.  A love of teaching is something I’ve always held close to my heart, (I originally went to school to be one, after all!).  I think it’s such a kind and meaningful gesture to give back to a teacher who’s made a difference in your year (or perhaps your life).

Foxy Originals have created 2 necklace designs (both of which come in gold or silver), that arrive ready-to-gift on a card that reads “Live. Love. Teach”.

The Inspire Teacher Necklace reads “Inspire” one one side of a circle charm (1.38″ diameter), and “Live Love Teach” on the opposite side.  This necklace comes on a 17″ chain is just $20.00 Cdn.

The second necklace (and my personal favourite) is the Teacher’s Charm Necklace.  The front of the charm (1.25″ x 0.75″) reads, “It takes a big heart to teach little minds”, and the back reads, “Live Love Teach”.  Also on this necklace is a tiny heart charm, and small beaded charm.  This necklace is also on a 17″ chain, and retails for $25.00 Cdn.

Both of these necklaces are made from fine pewter, and are then plated in gold or silver.  Every item Foxy Originals makes is lead-free and is produced locally.  Both of these necklaces are affordable, meaningful, and versatile gift ideas (you can wear each of them 2 ways!) that a teacher will truly appreciate and use.  They’re also great for dance teachers, singing teachers, and beyond!

Giveaway! 

Foxy Originals has generously offered to host a giveaway of their Teacher’s Charm Necklace in gold to one of my readers!  To enter, simply click the “a Rafflecopter giveaway” link below and follow the instructions.  This giveaway is open to residents of Canada only, and will close on Tuesday, June 14th at 11:59pm EST. Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

January 2016 Favourites

There are many great things about Winter (personally, I can’t name any but Christmas), but with it tends to come dry and dull skin, frizzy hair, and hands you want to hide in your gloves.  My January favourites happen to be products that help with all of these problems (plus a little glitz).  Let’s get to it!

1. Too Faced Hangover Replenishing Face Primer

I received a sample of this primer a few months ago, and didn’t start using it until recently.  With all the acne products I’ve been using, there have been days where my skin just needs some serious moisture (dry skin + makeup = not fun).  It applies more like a moisturizer, with a yummy, coconut scent.  As someone who has very oily skin, I typically go for a primer that will mattify.  But what I love about this primer is that it gives you a soft, dewy finish without the oil and shine.  It absorbed quickly on my skin and makeup applied easily over top.  This primer is silicone free (a common allergen), cruelty-free, and vegan friendly.

2. Jergens Shea Butter Deep Conditioning Moisturizer

While I typically tend to choose a moisturizer more based on scent than anything, this Winter I’ve been more focused on finding a high-quality product that soothes dryness and lasts all day long.  This moisturizer by Jergens does just that.  It’s got a soft, clean scent, a rich and luxurious consistency, and applies evenly.  I wasn’t sure it would live up to its claim of leaving skin more radiant, but it honestly does.  It leaves my skin with a dewy sheen, but dries quickly.

3. Tangle Teezer The Original Detangling Hairbrush

This brush is as fun to use as it looks.  On wet or dry hair, the soft, flexible bristles gently fight tangles while fitting perfectly into your hand (thanks to its ergonomic shape).  You can even bring it with you in the shower to comb through your conditioner or hair mask.  Because it requires less pulling or tugging than a normal hairbrush, you’ll notice less breakage and increased shine.  Even better? It comes in a variety of colour combinations.  Which one will you choose?

4. Olive and Piper Floret Crystal Studs

I promised glitz, didn’t I?  I received these earrings in my gift bag at the Spark Sessions blogger conference late last year, and have worn them countless time since.  I love that they have a vintage-inspired look, and that they dress up nearly any outfit.  I’ve paired mine with sweaters, dresses, even a leather jacket…I just can’t get enough!

5. FarmHouse Fresh Marshmallow Melt Shea Butter Hand Cream

This hand cream smells good enough to eat (even my boyfriend asked “what is that?”).  But aside from it smelling amazing, it’s also seriously effective, leaving my hands soft and easing any itchiness or dryness (I love applying this at night before bed).  You can purchase this cream in-store at Blossom Lounge in Toronto’s Distillery District (or online), and can choose from a variety of (adorably named) scents including “Fluffy Bunny” and “Front Porch Punch”.  The compact 2.4 oz size means you can keep one in your purse, your car, your bedside, and beyond!

What have you been loving for the month of January?  Let me know in the comments below! 

Gift Guide Day 10: A Gift to Share with your BFF

gg 2015-10

We all remember how much it meant when our friend chose us to wear the other half of their BFF bracelet, necklace, or key chain back in the day. Why not bring that feeling back?  These adorable Side by Side charms from Alex and Ani are a modern twist on the BFF bracelet.  Why otters, you ask?  Otters actually hold hands when floating in the water to prevent themselves from drifting apart (que the “awww”), and are therefore a symbol of unity and friendship.  Share one with your BFF and wear these charms as a reminder to, “Bask in the glow of good times and make the best of what floats your way.” (Alexandani.com) You can purchase this set in either a Rafaelian Gold or Rafaelian Silver finish, and they are expandable from 2″ to 3.5″ in diameter.  Who will be your significant otter?  Sorry, couldn’t resist!

Missed the first 9 days of the Gift Guide?  Check them out below!

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Day 8

Day 9

Gift Guide Day 5: A Gift With Meaning

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I love a personalized gift: one that’s unique and has meaning. Each piece in the Speechlust collection is adorned with an uncommonly used word; one that has a much deeper meaning than it’s few syllables would lead you to believe.  One of my favourites (pictured above) is the Halcyon Necklace.  According to the Speechlust website, Halcyon is defined as: “(adj.) To be calm, peaceful and tranquil. (n.) A mythical bird said to calm the waves of the sea.”  Wearing this necklace can be a reminder, “to slow down and keep perspective. When you take the time to breathe, you’ll realize that, like the waves, this too shall pass”.

You can view a full dictionary of all words offered on the site, and can shop by collection.  Some of my other favourites are the Ikigai and the Heliophile necklaces.  All come on a 22-inch chain, and some styles are offered in beaded versions.  Each necklace also includes a card with the word’s definition (so the person you’re giving it to won’t need to Google after opening!).

I also love Speechlust’s story.  Canadian owner Courtney Chilton was inspired to create Speechlust while traveling in Southeast Asia.  She created the brand having had no background in business, learning as she went along.  I admire that she created her brand purely with passion and a love for what she was doing.  All to often, I think we sell ourselves short because we don’t think this passion is enough.  It is.  Give these necklaces to friends, family members, or significant others, and support a small business while doing so.

Missed the first 4 days of the Gift Guide? Check them out below!

Day 1 (+Giveaway!)

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

6 Fall Must-Haves

Fall Must Haves

When I think of Fall, I think of pumpkins, apples, warm colours, and cozy knits.  Here are a few of my Fall must-haves.

1. Bath and Body Works Mini Candle in “Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin”

When it comes to candles, I’m typically more of a vanilla/musk/men’s cologne type of gal, but I have been absolutely loving this Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin candle as of late.  Picture a fresh pumpkin pie baking in the oven mixed with a hit of vanilla (mmmm, right?!).  I love that it fills the house with fragrance, but isn’t overpowering/headache inducing.  I own this candle in the 3-wick version, but how cute is this mini version? Perfect for testing out the scent!

2. Old Navy Patterned Sweater Cape in “Warm Multi”

Capes are huge for fall this year, and I’m in love with the Aztec-inspired pattern on this one from Old Navy.  What’s great about this cape is that you can wear it many different ways: over top of a chambray shirt, a sweater, a dress, and beyond.  It can be a statement piece that inspires the rest of your outfit, or simply an extra layer you leave at your desk during the day for when the office is chilly.  It’s versatile, affordable, and the perfect cozy material for Fall. And while I’m still a huge fan of the blanket scarf, this is a fun alternative.

3. Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon in “Brandy” 

When it comes to lip colours, I simply can’t resist a good berry tone.  This one from Bite Beauty is perfect for Fall.  Described as a “muted raspberry”, it’s super pigmented, applies smoothly, and has a matte finish.  The crayon-style applicator allows you to line your lips easily before filling them in, and the colour has serious staying power. For mornings that are getting increasingly darker (and when you start using the “snooze” button more often), simply pair this shade with some mascara and you’re good to go.  I’ve blogged previously about Bite Beauty and their use of food-grade ingredients; I’ve become a big fan and highly recommend trying them out!

4. Grove Square Spiced Single Serve Hot Apple Cider 

If Fall were a drink, it would be a nice hot glass of apple cider.  These k-cups are a super fast, easy, and convenient way to enjoy this seasonal classic at home, without having to make a full pot.  If you’re feeling fancy you can even add some cinnamon sticks or orange slices.  Yum!

5. Forever 21 Leaf Statement Necklace

There’s something so very “Greek Goddess” about nature-inspired jewelry, and this gorgeous one from Forever 21 is just $12.90!  What’s great is that, while it’s perfect for this time of year, it can actually be worn year-round.  And because a statement necklace makes, well, such a statement, it can be worn with the simplest of outfits (hello button-up and dress pants) for those not-so-easy Fall Monday mornings.  If you’re feeling a little more energetic, picture this necklace paired with a buttoned-up chambray shirt, a top-knot, a berry lip, and hey, maybe even the cape from Old Navy!

6. Mark’s Work Warehouse “Brooklyn” Mid-Rise Plaid Rain Boot

Buffalo plaid.  Need I say more? These fun rain boots from Mark’s Work Warehouse are perfect for Fall’s rainy days.  Even better? They are treated with antimicrobial technology to ensure they stay smelling and looking fresh.  I own a pair, and wore mine recently to go apple picking!

What are your essentials for Fall?  Let me know in the comments below!

Pink October: Glamulet for Breast Cancer Awareness

Glamulet-Breast Cancer Awareness

Everyone is affected by breast cancer.  Whether it’s a friend,  family member, or a personal fight, breast cancer is the 2nd deadliest cause of death for women around the world, and this needs to end.  With Pink October (for Breast Cancer Awareness) right around the corner, it’s the perfect time to don pink and show your love and support.

Enter Glamulet, a company that launched in 2014 and prides itself on making high-quality, fashion-forward, and affordable jewelry and charms.  During Pink October, Glamulet will donate 50% of their sales of pink charms to charities that support breast cancer.  Glamulet’s goal is to ensure that by 2050, no more lives will be lost to this cause.

There are a variety of charms in the collection, but some of my personal favourites are the “Pink Ribbon Rose Gold“, “Pink Enamel Ribbon Heat Pendant“, and the “Bright Pink Paved Crystal Charm“.  I love that these charms can be worn alone or mixed-and-matched; you can even purchase pre-made sets.

These pieces are a fun and fashionable way to help support the cause and raise awareness.  What charms will you choose to show your support?  Let me know in the comments below.

*This post is powered by BrandBacker.  All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own.    

 

 

Outfit Reveal: “She Who Hunts Finds” Challenge (Part 2)

Outfit Reveal

While I’m a true Summer girl at heart, I have to admit I love Fall fashion: the colours, the cozy fabrics, and the layering.  I knew that for this challenge, I wanted to create an outfit that encompassed all of these things.  My first stop upon arriving at Dixie Outlet Mall last Saturday morning was Winners.  I’m a huge fan of Winners and I always seem to find great deals at the Dixie Outlet Mall location.

At Winners, I scored this gorgeous pocketed red and black vest.  I loved that it was a little edgy and lumberjack-inspired, but in a girly way with its beautiful draping and cozy fabric.  This vest retails for $70.00, but I scored it for just $39.99! I love that you can wear it as a chic cape as well (shown below).

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The vest was the piece that inspired the rest of my outfit (I found it within 5 minutes of entering the mall!).  Since I styled a fun jumpsuit for the Spring challenge, I knew this time I wanted to purchase a classic dress: something that could be worn to work, an event, or a night on the town.  I found this Cynthia Rowley dress at Winners.  It’s a thick (and super forgiving) fabric, with a classy length, and pockets (need I say more!?).  Even better? This dress is an outfit in itself! It retails for $80.00, but I scored it for just $39.99.

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With the dress and vest purchased, my next stop was to grab a fun statement necklace (not a surprise if you know me well).  I wanted something colourful, but not something that would compete too much with the patterned vest.  I found this fun red statement necklace at Payless Shoe Source for just $4.00 (regular $19.99).

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On to Claire’s, where I purchased a pair of earrings, and a cute set of midi rings.  I knew I wanted to go with stud earrings, so as to not take away from the necklace-and-vest combo.  I decided to go with this set of earrings (which came with a third pair as well).  I thought it would be a cute touch to include a pair of leaf earrings: so very Fall inspired!  The rings were just a fun extra, and I loved that they were simple and understated.   The set of 2 rings, and the set of 3 earrings were both $2.00 each (regular $4.00 and $12.00, respectively).

Earrings

For a purse, I headed to Danier with the intention of purchasing a cute neutral clutch.  I spotted this chic over-the-shoulder bag (on sale!), and fell in the love with the tassel detail, and the fact that you can wear it multiple ways.  This leather bag retails for $129.00, but I scored it for just $47.99!

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Finally, my trip to Dixie Outlet Mall came full circle, and I finished back where I started: at Winners.  I purchased these super comfy open-back black booties that I’d eyed in the morning, and couldn’t get out of my mind.  These retail for $55.00, and I purchased them for $39.99.

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Overall, I spent $198.84 and saved a total of $194.03!  My Eagle shopping persona definitely held true as I made my way around the mall: I knew what I wanted, and I wouldn’t stop until I found it (I was there open-to-close!).  I’m super excited with my #DixieDeals, and am looking forward to wearing this outfit to work or a date (hayride or fall festival, anyone?).  What would you buy with $200.00 at Dixie Outlet Mall? Check back soon for a chance to win your own shopping spree!

Dixie Logo

Michael Kors for $2.00?!

What a Girl Wants

Yep, you heard correctly: you can score these Michael Kors shoes for just $2.00.  Or, how about this Chanel purse, or these Ann Taylor pumps…all just $2.00 each!  So how does one score such amazing deals, you ask?  The answer is What a Girl Wants, an event taking place in Burlington, Ontario on August 16th, 2015.  Here, you’ll find thousands of new and upscale repeat clothing items  for the entire family, including shoes, purses, jewelry, and more!  Simply purchase your tickets online here for $21.00, show up on August 16th with a reusable bag in hand (you’ll probably need a large one!), and pay only $2.00 for each item (cash only)!  You’ll want to show up right when the sale starts: bright and early at 8:00 am, and you can browse some of the items in advance of the sale on the What a Girl Wants Facebook page.

And, what makes this sale even more exciting, is that all of the proceeds support Habitat for Humanity Halton.  Last year, this event raised $10,000.00 for the cause!

Even if you’re not able to attend the sale, now is a great time to clean out that closet of yours and donate!  What a Girl Wants is currently accepting men’s, women’s and children’s clothing, shoes, purses, jewelry and accessories, and all items must be in excellent condition, and from a smoke-free home.  Have some items you’d like to donate? Check out the What a Girl Wants website for contact information.

Not able to attend but curious to know more?  Yours truly (that’s me!) will be attending the event and, of course, blogging about all the amazing finds to be had!

This event is truly one where fashion meets philanthropy; where you and your girlfriends can get together, haven fun, and make a difference.  I hope to see you there (be sure to stop by and say hi if you see me!).