lipstick

Spring Favourites

With just a couple more weeks of Spring left (helloooo Summer!), I wanted to share some of the products I’ve been loving for the past few months.  Let’s get started!

1. Beauty With a Twist Daily Shampoo and Conditioner*

Created in 2013 by celebrity stylist Oliver Ifergan in an effort to capture the essence of the California lifestyle (palm trees, sandy beaches…basically everything I dream about), Beauty With a Twist’s products are formulated with only the highest quality, certified-organic ingredients.  Their products are not tested on animals, and a portion of their sales are donated to The Beagle Freedom Project to help end animal cruelty.  Their Daily Shampoo and Conditioner smell amazing, (notes of coconut and soft peach), and leave hair feeling soft and moisturized.  Both are formulated without parabens and are sulfate-free, ensuring they protect and preserve colour treated hair.  Beauty With a Twist products can be purchased in Canada exclusively on Amazon.ca.

2. Sahajan Discovery Kit*

This Discovery Kit is like an adult goodie-bag full of nourishing treatments for your face, body, and hair.  All of Sahajan’s products are natural and organic, and are developed and made in Canada (Toronto to be exact!) with eco-friendly and sustainable practices.  This kit is the perfect way to test out some of Sahajan’s products and includes: Nourish Face Cream, Restorative Eye Cream, Protective Face Serum, Nurture Hair Oil, and Ritual Body Oil (plus a handy linen makeup bag and a natural-wood mirror).  All of the products in this kit are impressive; they are nourishing, lightweight, and smell beautiful.  If I had to choose just one favourite (and trust me, it’s hard), it would have to be the Restorative Eye Cream.  A good eye cream is hard to find, and this one left the skin under my eyes feeling soft and moisturized, and looking brighter.  You can purchase this Discovery Kit, or the individual Sahajan products at Toronto’s Blossom Lounge.

3. Skechers Flex Appeal Sneakers in “Floral Bloom”

For me, these sneakers were love at first sight (um, hello, do you see those flamingos!?).  Not only are they bright, adorable, and perfect for Summer, they are also extremely comfortable, thanks to their memory foam insoles and stretch mesh panels.  They are light-weight (a women’s size 7 is just 6oz!) and are super flexible, allowing them to bend and flex naturally with your feet.

4. NYX Lip Lingerie in “Corset”

After reading positive reviews about this colour and formula online, I decided to give it a try.  This product is a matte liquid lipstick with a griege-ish tone.  It is long-lasting, and, as is commonplace for the NYX brand, is affordable without compromising on quality. If you’re looking for a super-unique yet wearable tone to add to your makeup collection, this is it.

5. Prada Candy Eau de Parfum

I’m one of those people who likes to switch up their scent on a daily basis, so it’s not often I find one that ends up on repeat.  I received a sample of this scent about a year ago, and brought it with me on a trip to Mexico.  Now, maybe it’s that every time I smell this scent I recall sandy beaches, warm breezes, and pina coladas, but since purchasing a full-sized version a couple of months ago, I still can’t get enough.  With notes of caramel, musk, and vanilla, this scent is soft and sweet with a nice warmth to it, just like a Summer night.

What have you been loving these past few months?  Let me know in the comments below!

Note: products indicated with an asterisk (*) were received for consideration.  All thoughts and opinions are honest and are my own.

Arbonne Cosmetics: A “Poppy” of Colour

My love of lipstick is no secret: pinks, purples, reds, nudes, I love them all! More recently, I’ve also been interested in finding cleaner, more natural products to work into my lifestyle.  So, when I was recently offered the opportunity to test out a product from Arbonne, it was somewhat serendipitous!

With botanically based ingredients, eco-friendly packaging, and a shipping process that is certified carbon neutral, Arbonne really is taking the lead in the cosmetic industry with regard to being earth-friendly.  They sell everything from supplements, to bath and body products, to makeup, and all are formulated with pure, safe, and beneficial ingredients.  There’s even an ingredient guide on their website, so you’ll always have the peace of mind of knowing what you’re putting on or in your body.

The product I chose to test was Arbonne’s Smoothed Over Lipstick in the colour “Poppy”: a gorgeous reddish-orange hue.  The first thing I noticed about this lipstick was how smoothly it applied.  It’s got a rich, creamy consistency that feels super luxurious (it’s formulated with natural butters), and it left my lips feeling soft and moisturized throughout the day.  It’s richly pigmented and has a glossy finish that makes your lips appear fuller and plumper.  Because it’s vegan and formulated with natural ingredients, (botanical extracts, fruit oils, and etcetera), you’ll want to apply it gently to avoid damaging the product.  Arbonne also recommends storing it in a cool, dry place (because no one wants a melted lipstick in their purse or car!).

The Smoothed Over Lipstick comes in over 15 different colours ranging from neutrals to brights, and retails for $34.00 CDN.  Some others I have my eye on? “Dream”, “Peony”, “Dahlia”…and pretty much every other colour (it’s a problem!).

Have you tried any Arbonne products? What’s your favourite?  Let me know in the comments below!                             

*Product provided for testing purposes.  All thoughts and opinions are honest and are my own.

“Fresh” Finds: Joe Fresh Beauty Arrives at Shoppers Drug Mart!

Joe Fresh

I am excited and grateful to have been invited to attend a preview of the new Joe Fresh Beauty collection last week (available at Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix stores now!).  There were yummy treats, fancy drinks, gorgeous flowers, and lots of amazing new beauty products to test out.  The collection is seriously impressive, with products that will take you from a day at the office, to a night out on the town, without breaking the bank (products range from just $8.00 to $18.00).  The brand even has a signature “Five Minute Face” routine that’s simple, effective, and will enhance your natural beauty.

So let’s be real, as a beauty lover I wanted everything I saw at the preview.  There were so many innovative, fun products, and I’d love to tell you about all of them.  But, for this post I thought I’d highlight my top 3 must-haves from the new collection (plus a few extra honorable mentions!), alongside some pictures from the event. Products are shown above in order of discussion below.  Let’s get started!

1.Joe Fresh Highlighter Powder $8.00

I was drawn to this product right away (let’s just say it was love at first swatch).  This highlighting powder is a rich, velvety consistency with impressive colour payoff.  Available in two colours: Champagne (pink-toned) and Luster (gold-toned), simply apply to your cheek or brow bones with your fingers or a brush for an instant, gorgeous glow.  I also love that it can double as an eyeshadow!  And, while we’re on the topic of highlighting, I can’t help but talk about my love of the new Joe Fresh Illuminating Primer (shown to the left of the Highlighting Powders in the picture below).  At just $16.00, these primers are a gorgeous, light reflecting formula that hides imperfections and creates a glowing canvas for your makeup. Choose from “Pure Glow” or “Champagne”; you can even use it on your body as well!

Joe Fresh 5

Joe Fresh 6

2.Joe Fresh Lip Crème $12.00

Well known-fact: I’m a lip-product junkie.  The bolder the hue, the better.  These Lip Crèmes are beautifully pigmented and long-lasting, and come in 6 different shades.  With the colour payoff of a lipstick, and the application of a lipgloss, these fun hybrids help condition your lips while providing a medium-shine finish.  And, if you’re someone who prefers a more natural look and wear for your lip products, be sure to check out the Long Wear Lip Veils: lighter weight and sheerer than the Lip Crèmes with a natural looking finish.

Joe Fresh 3

3.Joe Fresh Precision Liquid Eyeliner $8.00

I use a liquid liner nearly every single day, changing up the style to match my mood: feeling fancy? Winged, obviously! What I love about this liner is it’s unique triangular shape, allowing it to sit perfectly and steadily in your hand.  At just $8.00, this liner is an incredible value for money.  It produces a rich, pigmented black line without needing to tug or pull on your lids.  It’s also water resistant, formaldehyde free, and paraben free.  And, while we’re on the topic of eyes, I also recommend checking out the Joe Fresh Tinted Brow Fix ($12.00): a wax-based cream that makes grooming and filling in your brows as easy as the swipe of a wand!

What will you try from the Joe Fresh Beauty collection?  Let me know in the comments below!

Gift Guide Day 3: A Pretty Pout

GG 2015-3

Bite Beauty has been on my beauty-radar quite often this year.  Their products are made solely of food-grade ingredients (and are gluten-free), and the colour payoff is always impressive.  This Best Bite Rewind set is the perfect way to try out the brand (if you haven’t already), and includes 4 matte-finish mini lip crayons (0.031 oz each).  The kit includes a fun range of colours: nude (Cafe), rose (Torte), raspberry (Coulis), and eggplant (Aubergine).  Orange peel wax protects and seals in moisture, while triple milled pigments provide light but serious colour payoff.  The pointed crayon tips allow you to perform precise, liner-free applications on the go.  This set comes ready to gift in a cute holiday-red tin, or you can divide it up into 4 individual gifts!

Miss the first 2 days of the Gift Guide? Click below!

Day 1 (+ Giveaway!)

Day 2

Beauty Innovations to Make Your Fall Days a Breeze

Fall Beauty Innovations

As someone who’s not much of  a “morning person” to begin with, Fall’s late sunrises certainly do not make things any easier (not to mention the cooler, drier temperatures that wreak havoc on your hair and skin).  The good news, is that there are some awesome (and fun) products available to help you make your Fall mornings and days easier, and some that may even allow you to catch a few extra zzz’s.

1. Deborah Lippmann “Genie In A Bottle” Illuminating Nail Tone Perfector

In Fall especially, I love a gorgeous oxblood or navy nail polish.  But we all know the frustration that is removing it: stained nails and cuticles, and yellowed tips…ugh.  However this handy polish by Deborah Lippmann is changing the Fall nail game.  Simply apply a coat under your favourite polish to  protect and enhance your natural nail tone.  You can also wear it on its own for natural, luminous looking nails.

2. Urban Decay Ultimate Ozone Multipurpose Primer Pencil

Much like my choice of nail colour, Fall also inspires me to bring out my darker berry, brown, and purple lipsticks and glosses.  After all, what better way to change up your look than with a statement lip, right?  The problem is, sometimes the “statement” is that your carefully-applied lipstick is now feathering and bleeding outside the lines (grrr!).  Solution? Urban Decay’s Ultimate Ozone Multipurpose Primer Pencil.  Line the outside of your lips with this clear pencil for long-lasting lip colour that stays where it’s applied.  Want even more staying power?  Apply it under your lipstick to help it last all day.  But wait, it gets even better.  You can also use this product as a primer when covering up blemishes and fine lines, and as a beauty eraser to correct any makeup mishaps (example: for those fun times when your mascara ends up on your cheek instead of your eyelashes).  This multi-tasker is a Fall must-have!

3. Conair InfinitiPro “The Ultimate Brush”

The dry air this time of year means there’s a good chance that your freshly straightened hair is going to be visited by Fall’s good friend: static electricity.  And no matter how much product or water you add, sometimes it just seems as if it’s never going to leave.  This handy hair innovation by Conair, “The Ultimate Brush“, contains a battery-powered (2X AAA) ionic generator that acts to “neutralize the static charge, smoothing the cuticle for an instant shiny, frizz-free finish” (conaircanada.ca).  That’s right, the static in your hair can now be turned off with the slide of a switch. Dreams do come true.

4. Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer

Now that we have our dry, static-y hair problem solved, it’s time to show some love to our skin.  There’s two things about applying moisturizer that frustrate me: 1. waiting for your skin to dry after the shower, and 2. waiting to get dressed while your moisturizer soaks in.  Luckily, this Wet Skin Moisturizer by Jergens solves both of these problems.  Simply apply to your skin before you exit the shower, and then pat dry with a towel (no need to rinse!)  Because your pores are open from the heat of  the shower, your skin is more receptive to absorbing moisture.  In fact, studies have shown this product actually moisturizes 2X’s more, and in half the time, than with ordinary lotion.  In a nutshell, this means you can sleep in a little longer and have gorgeous, moisturized skin.  Where can I sign up for a lifetime supply?

Have you tried any of these products?  Are there any beauty innovations you’re loving?  Let me know in the comments below! 

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!

5 Accessories to Ring in Spring!

5 Things for Spring

While Summer is my favourite season, there’s just something about the fresh, warm(er), Spring air that makes me smile.  Another thing I love about Spring? It’s when bright colours and fun patterns make their way back into style.  Check out these 5 fun accessories I’ve chosen to help you celebrate.

1.  Indigo Applique Pouch Swimmer 

Just try and look at this pouch without cracking a smile (it’s basically impossible).  Use it as a makeup bag, put your camera in it, or rock it as a fun clutch!

2.  Kate Spade New York Umbrella

Until those flowers arrive, make the most of April’s showers with this adorable umbrella from Kate Spade New York (that reads “Rain Check?”).  The clear shell allows you to actually see where you’re walking (it’s happened to all of us…), and it folds up easily with a tab-with-snap closure.

3.  Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in “Anarchy”

Aside from being one of my favourite accessories in general, I especially love that each season comes with a brand new range of lipstick shades to choose from.  One of my favourites right now, (and one that is perfect for Spring and Summer), is this gorgeous bright fuchsia from Urban Decay (picture of me wearing it here).  Extremely pigmented, this lipstick applies super-smoothly and keeps your lips moisturized courtesy of jojoba oil, avocado oil, cocoa butter and shea butter.

4.  Aldo “Frerima” Necklace

I love this necklace for 3 reasons: 1. the floral design screams “Spring”, 2. the colour allows it to be extremely wearable, and 3. the unique, asymmetrical design makes it extremely interesting to the eye.  Pair it with a simple black dress, or with a plain tee and jeans.

5.  Keds Crashback in “Navy Flamingo”

Warmer weather and sunshine means it’s time to trade in those Uggs for something a little lighter (unless you’re me and wear them all year round, of course).  Called “Crashback” because you can collapse the back of the shoe any way you’d like, these awesome flamingo-adorned slide-ons are perfect for commuting to the office, or pairing with jeans on the weekend (making them both fun and practical).  Not a flamingo kind of gal? They come in a variety of other colours/patterns (but really…who’s not a flamingo kind of gal?!).

 

January/February Favourites!

Jan-Feb 2015 Faves

I can barely fathom that it’s already March…where did January and February go?!  Wherever it went, it did leave me with some awesome new favourites to share with you.  Let’s get started!

1. American Eagle AEO Soft & Sexy Jegging V-Neck T-Shirt

I know what you’re thinking: Elyse, a t-shirt is a t-shirt.  But trust me, these shirts are perfection.  Part of AE’s new collection, these tees are the perfect length, are extremely soft and silky, are tagless, and come out good-as-new when washing.  I purchased my v-neck in black, (they are available in other colours), and the “Soft & Sexy” line also includes other styles (muscle tees, baseball tees, zip ups, and more!).

2. Arm & Hammer Pro Sensitive Whitening Toothpaste

For me, a good toothpaste is hard to find.  Sometimes I don’t like the texture, sometimes I don’t care for the taste, and sometimes I’m just not happy with the results. But for me, this toothpaste has it all: sensitivity protection, whitening, and a great “clean” feeling after you use it.  I’m especially impressed with its whitening ability, and noticed a significant difference after just a few days of use.

3. Tetley Chai Tea

I tried this tea after I found it in my pantry on a day when my go-to, Orange Pekoe, had run out.  When it comes to home-brewed tea, this is definitely one of my new front-runners.  A combination of, “cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, star anise and cloves”, I find it to be extremely smooth tasting and aromatic (just smelling it calms me down at the end of the day).

4. MAC Cosmetics Lip Pencil in “Hip ‘n’ Happy”

Lip pencils have become one of my favourite beauty products as of late (check out my Valentine’s day post here).  I was introduced to this MAC classic when I went to pick up the new Viva Glam Miley Cyrus Lipstick and Tinted Lipglass.  The makeup artist at the MAC counter was wearing a gorgeous colour on her lips, and she informed me that it was actually this lip pencil underneath the Miley lipglass.  She had received so many compliments on her lip combo, that her store at the mall (and the MAC counter in The Bay) were all sold out.  So, three MAC counters later, I now own and love this lip pencil.  Wear it on its own, with a lipstick, or under a gloss.  Any which way, you’re sure to love it too!

5. Aldo Accessories “Olaoviel” Necklace

Aldo Accessories is one of my favourite stores, and I frequent it often to check out their sale section (usually buy one, get one free).  This fun statement necklace, made of multifaceted black rings woven into braided black fabric, is perfect for jazzing up the neckline of a simple crew neck tee (or LBD).

6. Aveeno Fresh Essentials Daily Exfoliating Scrub

I’ve already raved about this product in my previous post: a review of the Aveeno Fresh Essentials line.  So to summarize, this scrub: a) smells amazing, b) feels awesome on your skin, and c) works like a charm.  Highly recommend!

  “Spring is when life’s alive in everything” ~Christina Rossetti

The Perfect Pout (Just in time for Valentine’s Day!)

Valentine

One of the girliest days of the year is just a week away, and whether you’ve penciled in a hot date, or a night out on the town with the girls, consider these your essentials for your prettiest pout yet.

Step 1: Exfoliate

Nothing ruins a gorgeous lip colour quite like dry, flaky skin beneath it.  Prep your lips by exfoliating them with a toothbrush, or with this Sugar Lip Polish by Fresh.  Made with real brown sugar, this polish tastes as good as it will make your lips feel.

Step 2: Moisturize

Aside from applying at bedtime, I like to swipe on some moisturizer at the beginning of my makeup routine, allowing it time to soak in.  I then wipe off any excess (or wear as-is depending on the day), and follow with other lip products.  This Creme de Rose Smoothing Plumping Lip Balm by Dior makes your lips feel incredible (and can we note the festive “rose” scent? So very Valentine’s Day).

Step 3: Prime

Once you’ve given your moisturizer some time to work its magic, prime lips using your foundation, or this Lip Insurance Lip Primer by Too Faced.  This not only helps prevent creasing and feathering, it also ensures your lipstick or lip gloss stays as true-to-colour as possible.

Step 4: Line

In the word of makeup, I don’t think lip liners receive nearly the credit that they deserve.  Yes, they prevent feathering and “bleeding” (essentially, looking like you coloured outside the lines), but they also make your lip colour last considerably longer.  If you’re looking for long-wear, carefully line your lips with a colour in the same family as the lipstick you’ll be using, then finish by colouring within the lines.  If you’re simply looking to prevent any unwanted shifting or creasing, try No Bleeding Lips-Secret Lip Liner by No Cosmetics.  This product is clear, so you don’t need to worry about matching it to your lip colour or gloss, and it also acts as a temporary filler for those who have deeper lines around the lips.

Step 5: Colour

Probably my favourite step of all, is applying the colour that finishes off the look.  For Valentine’s Day, my pick is Buxom Full Bodied Lipstick in Mistress.  A gorgeous pink with a satin finish, this lipstick offers full coverage and gently plumps lips as you wear.  Apply your lip colour, blot with a tissue, and finish with gloss if your heart desires (pun intended!).

“There are all kinds of love in this world but never the same love twice.” ~F. Scott Fitzgerald 

 

 

The Ultimate Girls Giveaway!

Ultimate Giveaway

I’ve teamed up with some awesome bloggers for an Ultimate Girls Giveaway (trust me, you won’t want to miss this!).

 

The amazing prize includes:

-A Kate Spade Wesley Park Natalie Bag

-A Tory Burch Fit Bit Bangle

-A Kate Spade Bow Bangle

Nars Audacious Lipstick in Anita Neutral

-A black and white heart printed scarf

 

How To Enter: 

Follow me on Instagram and follow the loop to enter (instructions below the giveaway picture on Instagram), and for a bonus entry, enter using this Rafflecopter link!

 

Good Luck!