Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Absolutely Loving...

As the title suggests, I've been LOVING a new mascara lately.
The best part is, it only costs $7.

It's by Prestige and it's called My Blackest Lashes. I got mine from Rexall and it's one of the best mascaras I've ever used. Love it way more than L'Oreal Voluminous and most other high-end mascaras I've tried. It's not as thickening as Smoky Lash, but Smoky Lash got clumpy and dry in 3 weeks, which is unacceptable.



I've just really been enjoying it lately and can highly recommend it if you're a fan of volumizing mascaras (previous favourites of mine were YSL Faux Cils, YSL Singulier, MAC Plushlash and Makeup Forever Smoky Lash - just so you get a feel of the kind of mascaras I prefer).

This is what is looks like on - without eyelash curler action:


on the eyes I'm wearing Benefit Where There's Smoke eyeshadow


My lashes are pretty long naturally so I don't need too much lenghtening action, which is why I prefer volumizing mascaras. I also have quite oily eyelids and some mascaras I've loved before, like MAC Plushlash, always transferred after a long day. I am so far happy to report that so far, the Prestige mascara doesn't do that at all!

So definitely a two thumbs up from me.
Have you tried this? What's your favourite mascara?

Monday, May 30, 2011

The Pinks of Summer


I may not be into pink clothing/accessories, but this summer I am finding myself reaching more and more for pink cosmetics... whether it be brights or pastels, a touch of pink (like one of my favourite light day scents) is welcomed on the nails, lips and cheeks this year.


Here are some of my favourites as of late:


For nails (especially on the toes), it's been a non-stop pink bonanza - from left to right - Essie's Fiji, OPI Mod About You, Essie Fiesta. Fiesta applies like a dream. Mod About You can get a bit thick and clumpy, Fiji is a streaky mess... but ultimately the results are worth it!


Make-up wise, I've been incorporating pinks mostly on the lips - Rimmel's East End Snop lipliner has been on heavy rotation, topped with either Eyeko Primrose Hill lipgloss or Clarins Lip Perfector 01. Dior Addict lipstick in #465 Singuliere is also great.

MAC Well Dressed is the only true pink blush I own, and I love wearing it in the summer.

Here are some swatches, in the same order from left to right as above:


I think I need another pink blush this summer. I owned MAC Dollymix before and didn't like it - so not that. Any recommendations?

Hope your week started off great :)

xoxox

Sandra



Sunday, May 29, 2011

Relaxing Sunday... another IN & OUT post

IN

- I've been absolutely obsessed with the scent of this candle. So obsessed that I even took an artsy, serene photo of it with my camera:


Mmm doesn't it look amazing? It's from Bath and Body Works, and it makes my room smell cozy and delicious. I'm usually not a fan of "baked goods" scents or anything like that, but there is just something different and rich about this scent!

- speaking of scents and Bath and Body Works... their new Coconut Mango stuff... *drool*
Will definitely pick up a bit of the range before I head on vacation since I can't carry my big shower gel and body scrub/lotion tubs that I have from The Body Shop. The "Carried Away" scent is great for summer too, might pick up a body mist for my stinky transatlantic plane ride ;)

- body care in general. I've been really into pampering myself recently. I never used to really bother with lotions and shower gels and things like that, but I really enjoy it now

- bonus airmiles... I'm like a crazy coupon lady, but with air miles or rewards points. I just love collecting extra points haha

OUT

- Cheryl Cole fired from US X-factor?!?!! I still hope it's just a dirty fake rumour but it seems like it's true... and I am so pissed. I love her. I think she's beautiful and charming and she always picked good songs for her X-factor people on the UK version of the show. I would have loved to see her in the US. That whole excuse about her accent being "too thick" for Americans to understand it pathetic and ridiculous... Ozzy freaking Osbourne had a hit show in the USA and no one could understand what the hell he was saying, even with subtitles!
Anyways, I'm sad and angry. End rant.


Saturday, May 28, 2011

New Skincare Items


Ran out of a few essentials and decided to take a look through the drug store...
picked up a couple of new things along the way!


Rexall had a big fat bottle of La Roche Posay Effaclar gel cleanser (targeted towards sensitive and oily skin - cha ching!!) on offer with a mini Effaclar Duo - which you all know I love, and I ran out of - so of course I grabbed it and am excited to give it a try.
It is soap free, has a very soft and clean scent, and is paraben free... like all other La Roche Posay products.

Along with that I was in dire need of a new toner. I hadn't used a toner in a while but when the weather gets warmer I find myself needing one. For the past 2 years I was using Lush Tea Tree Water but I figured it was time to try something new... Burt's Bees Radiance Toner seems quite nice. Has a very lovely and light scent, is all natural, contains no alcohol or parabens, and has a bunch of soothing ingredients like aloe and royal jelly. I love reading "ingredients" lists, can't you tell? Haha...

Anyways will give these a whirl and report back, as always.
Any new skincare purchases for you this weekend??

Friday, May 27, 2011

Eyeliner of the moment...

I always go through phases with my eyeliner, sometimes I prefer the smudgy black look of a kohl pencil, other times I opt for the sharp and intense lines of a liquid liner.

Something that merges both of those effects together and I've been using a lot lately is my Shu Uemura painting liner (in black - of course!).


This brand is pretty hard to come by in North America nowadays (online only for US residents), and you can still find some Shu Uemura counters at Holt Renfrew in Canada, which is where I found mine.

It doesn't glide as smoothly as MAC Fluidline, but the pigment is much more intense and the formula is more of a cream base than a gel.
It doesn't dry out at all, and I've read reviews that it lasts well over a year without any drying out... which is something that I can't say about MAC Fluidline, that goes chunky after 8 months or so.

The pigment stays put and remains intense throughout the day. This is what it looked like on my eye after about 10 hours of wear:


As you can see, the MAC Paint Pot (in Rubenesque) that I had on is starting to crease,
while the eyeliner remains intact. No powder needed to set it!

What type of black eyeliner do you prefer?


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Desperately Seeking Bracelets


I haven't purchased a new bracelet in a while and I think it's time to change that.

I love the idea of a simple flowy tank paired with some dark denim shorts or white skinny jeans, kicked up a notch with some interesting bracelets.

I've made a few little collages of affordable pieces that have caught my eye and that I will be trying to look for in person. I'm really picky about jewelry - even with cheaper brands like Forever21 or H&M - I have to see it in person, I can't just order online blindly... (unless it's one of those brands that's consistent good quality, I'm sure you know what I mean!!)

I'm jealous of you ladies in the UK who have this range readily available. There are some pieces available on ASOS but really limited selection... they have his range in Topshop too, I think, as well as some stands at various shops.
Absolutely love his pieces!


Madewell is the little sister of J. Crew. J Crew is a brand that is very consistent with the quality of their jewelry, similar to Banana Republic and Club Monaco.
I loved the two bracelets I found by Madewell and the bottom one by Club Monaco. I find gold and white paired together an absolute summer staple!


How amazing are these Mango cuffs? I am totally hunting for these next month in Germany!

Any jewelry item you're eager to get this summer??

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Wishlist #233472843

I can't help it.
I come across certain things and then spend days lusting for them...
Most of the time it goes away, but, in the case of a few, they persist.

Here's what has currently grabbed my attention:

- Le Metier De Beaute Kaleidoscope in "Penelope"

Actually, all their Kaleidoscopes are to die for - I think they come out with one every season, featuring limited edition shades.

I've said it once and I'll say it again - Le Metier De Beaute Eyeshadows will make you stop impulsively buying random MAC/NARS shades from all the collections they come out with and just make you want to invest in the good stuff instead.

I only own one, Corinthian, which is firmly planted in my "Top 5 Eyeshadows EVER" category but I need more, and I need them soon.
Unfortunately I've put all unnecessary makeup buying on hold since I need to save up for my vacation, but if I make an exception, it would probably be for this Kaleidoscope in "Penelope":


Click here to see them swatched in all their glory

I actually don't own any colours like the ones featured (except for maybe the taupe-ish shade that looks similar to MAC Style Snob, which I LOVE, so it wouldn't really be a bad thing).
At $95 a pop, these are a luxury item, but you do end up saving a bit since separately these eyeshadows cost $30 each.

Do you own a Kaleidoscope? Would you ever want to?

I've seen them in person and they're just so lovely. Packaging is sturdy and sleek, would be quite perfect for traveling.

Monday, May 23, 2011

In & Out (Victoria Day 2011)

IN

- white flowy blouses, I just can't stop loving them and buying them. Summer staples!

- this little book by Victoria Beckham, a style book that is very thorough and fun to read. With nice tips and mentions all of Victoria's favourite stores (some of them quite wallet-friendly!)


I bought this months ago and forgot about it until recently. I randomly go through it every now and then and get inspired.

- Style inspiration in general. I was watching the first episode of this past season of America's Next Top Model and one of my favourite models/jewelry designers Erin Wasson was featured, and her outfit was great:


I need a long sleeved stripe top like that and I've been searching for ages for just the right amount of stripe. I wouldn't personally rock those leather thigh high boots but she looks great in them either way.

- the final season of Entourage starts soon!

- pale/nude nail polish for pedicures

- 4 more weeks until Europe

OUT

- lawnmowers. This is random but every single day I have off from work and I try to relax outside in the garden, someone is mowing their lawn nearby. For hours on end, it seems. First they use the lawn mower, then they use the edge trimmer, then the leaf blowing device... it drives me insane.

I can't think of anything else, the lawn mower noises have gotten into my brain.

Take care and happy Victoria Day to all my Canadians :) Hope you're having a lovely, relaxed day.

xoxox

Sandra

Friday, May 20, 2011

Another healthy dose of "Style-spiration"


I love fashion, I really do. I get really excited when I see pictures of outfits that inspire me, and they genuinely make me happy. Some of you know what I mean, some might think I'm crazy but hey - to each our own, right? :)

This photo made me jump up and down (until I got to the hat part, which looks like some sort of roadkill/pom pom mixture but that's just my anti-hat nature coming out to attack haha)...
It's a perfect outfit. It's sophisticated, looks comfortable, and undeniably chic.
I love the way she paired interesting bright shades (that blazer is to die for) with classic nude pumps and a loose nude blouse.


The shoes are Pigalle Platos by Christian Louboutin, and this photo might just end my on-going debate of "which Louboutins should I buy first? Should I go for Pigalle or Pigalle Plato?". Pigalles are probably the most classic Louboutins in my humble opinion, but many complain that they are uncomfortable due to their lack of platform and high arch. So not too long ago Mr. Louboutin decided to slightly cure our suffering by designing the Pigalle Plato, same classic Pigalle look and feel, but with a beautifully constructed thin platform to make walking a bit easier.

I think this would make a great birthday present for myself at the end of summer, don't you think? :)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A quick FOTD (face of the day) - May 2011

This has been one of my go-to looks this month and last month - and it's what I am wearing in my most recent hair tutorial video.
I've been experimenting with my newly purchased Dior Amber Diamond highlighter and so far I really enjoy it so expect to see it in any upcoming Face of the Day posts.


Wearing Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation (in shade #5 mixed with Makeup Forever HD in shade #123). Set with MAC MSF Natural in Medium Dark (which, as you can see, does absolutely nothing for oil control haha).
Benefit Hoola Bronzer, L'Oreal True Match Blush (in shade W3-4 "barely blushing"), and a little bit of Dior Amber Diamond on the top of the cheekbone.
On the lips I am wearing Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Boy.


I wore Estee Lauder DoubleWear Cream Eyeshadow in Silver Leaf all over the lid as a base followed with Benefit Eyeshadow in "Where There's Smoke" in the outer half of my eye and on the lower lashline. In the inner corner of my eye I used the 2 lightest shades in the Dior Amber Diamond highlighter and blended them towards the middle.
Shu Uemura Painting Liner in black to line the eyes and I smudged it with my finger a little bit. I also used Diorshow Extase mascara.

What's your go-to look lately?


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Absolutely Loving...

A couple of weeks ago on my YouTube channel I posted a video with some new products I purchased from The Body Shop, and now here I am to talk about one of my favourites (I liked everything I bought, but this made the most difference) -
the Mango body scrub!

mmmm, doesn't it look yummy?

Not only does it smell divine, like sweet and fresh mango, but it contains mango seed oil which is perfect for dry skin.
I often get super dry skin on my lower legs and my feet, and this scrub has been absolutely amazing. It isn't too abrasive, but it has just the right amount of "scrub" so that it successfully gets rid of dry skin and the mango seed oil left behind keeps the skin super soft, with a slight sheen.

This is divine on legs and feet in the summer, I tell ya!

Have you tried these body scrubs before? What do you think?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Style-spiration


I will be spending 5 weeks in Europe with family in just over a month and I'm already starting to gather outfit inspirations... the big theme seems to be white tops and a thin beige trench, with some funky accessory or layers. You never know what weather I'll encounter in 5 weeks of traveling.
This look is from a Shopbop lookbook and I love everything about it.
I'm on the hunt for a crisp white pair of denim shorts, and that bright cardigan is gorgeous as well.

I am a sucker for feminine and long flowy white tops combined with more rocker-chic leather leggings and ankle boots.

Love those leopard flats! I saw a pair at J Crew but I wouldn't really spend over $100 on something so trendy. But it's a fun and simple way to incorporate the animal print trend that still seems to be going strong.

Last but not least, a gorgeous black Alexander Wang dress, just for good measure.
This is from another Sandra, whose blog is always inspiring.
You bet I will be packing a versatile and sexy black dress on my travels :)

What have you been inspired by lately?
Any summer staples I should add to my list?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Spring Makeup (with some current favourites)


It was nice and sunny over a few days last week and I pretty much stuck to the same makeup combination. Light textures with a soft, subtle sheen.

I've been reaching for my Dior HydraLife tinted moisturizer almost every single day.
With the discovery of some oil-combatting products (REN clay cleanser and Boscia blotting sheets), my skin hasn't looked/felt as oily lately so I have been lovingggg this product.

It photographs amazingly, too, which doesn't hurt.
Here I'm wearing it set with Laura Mercier translucent powder, NARS Laguna Bronzer and NARS Madly blush.


On the lips I'm wearing Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Boy, mixed with YSL Rouge Volupte #7.
I can't wear that YSL lipstick by itself without looking creepy (it's just way too pale and doesn't work with my skin/hair colour at the moment), so combining it with Boy makes the most beautiful natural shade.


On the eyes I wore Tempting, Mulch and Texture eyeshadows by MAC, with Shu Uemura black painting eyeliner and Diorshow Extase mascara.

I hope you had an amazing weekend!
xxoxo

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Under The Sea...


I am absolutely loving the beautiful marine-inspired silver jewelry pieces
that just came out in the Elizabeth and James accessory line.

While I think they are slightly overpriced (like everything else from that brand, but that's another story), the ideas are lovely and I love how they incorporated the marine theme in a subtle way.

Here are some of my favourite pieces (all images from Shopbop):


these gorgeous earrings resemble pieces of coral
and would look amazing against blonde or red hair


an anchor ring - simple and cute, but definitely not worth $85
you could easily find a more affordable piece at Forever21/Asos, etc.


this is probably my favourite piece, I've never seen anything like this
so dainty and cool at the same time


another coral-inspired piece

And since we're talking about coral, I am also on the hunt for the perfect bright coral/orange dress for this summer season. I'd even settle for a loose silky tank top in the colour... would look amazing paired with a white or nude skirt.
I love the shape and style of this dress, by the brand Future Classics - a cool English brand that I have been admiring from afar - they are quite pricy, but beautiful nonetheless.


See? It's not always about turquoise and navy when talking about the sea.

What inspires you this summer?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

An Unexpected Result


I don't remember if I mentioned it in a blog post or a video a while back (it was one or the other, for sure), but I randomly purchased this Nivea anti-cellulite gel when it was on sale at the drug store and after several weeks of regular use (I use it every other night, massaging it thoroughly for about 5 minutes in the areas of concern) I can honestly say that it has made an improvement in the texture of my skin and the appearance of those pesky cellulite dimples has reduced dramatically.


Now, I have also incorporated regular glute exercises - I just like to do random little workouts that I learn from ToneItUp - and after about 2 months of keeping this regular routine I am so happy with the results.

Not sure how much of it was due to the magical Nivea gel, but I love the way it feels on the skin. It instantly feels smooth and it is so easy to massage into the skin. The scent is pleasant as well. I don't think that there is any one magical cream for us to apply that will make our cellulite go away no matter how crazy the claims - but I definitely think that they can help when paired up with the right amount of exercise.

I will happily continue to apply this to my behind every night...

Have you ever tried an "anti-cellulite" cream?

Monday, May 9, 2011

Trip to Lush


I had forgotten about Lush in recent months until a few days ago when I started longing for the clarifying powers of Big shampoo.

If you recall, I was unimpressed by Big as a shampoo for regular use since it was full of salt and a bit harsh on my coloured hair. However, I did find that it did a good job at properly clarifying and getting rid of product build-up when used once a month or so.

In the store today, after chatting a bit with the sales assistant, she recommended that I try Rehab shampoo instead - apparently it also has clarifying properties and it smelled divine so I bought a little bottle and will give it a try.


Smells a lot better than the "Tide" scent of Big, and it is loaded with fruit juices. Will review it after I've gotten the chance to use it a bit.

I also purchased my beloved Cosmetic Warrior mask - a mask that smells and looks like some sort of hummus. It has clay, green tea and garlic in it and it makes my skin look and feel amazing. Highly recommended for my fellow ladies with acne-prone skin that gets congested easily.

Hope you're all having a great monday!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Currently having a love affair with...


Smoothies!

Healthy, delicious, and take about 15 seconds to make.
I couldn't think of anything else to blog about today except for this...

I've been on a strawberry-banana smoothie roll over the past week (sometimes I feel adventurous and use raspberries instead haha)


All I do is throw in a handful of strawberries, add a banana,


A cup of almond milk, and maybe a tablespoon of honey and VOILA:


A tall glass of heaven :)

Hope you're all enjoying your weekend and happy mother's day to all the beautiful mothers out there!

xoxo

Sandra

Thursday, May 5, 2011

In and Out...

IN

- being able to leave the house without a jacket on! I missed warm weather

- Cheryl Cole is officially coming to US X-factor (I totally became addicted to the UK version of the show over the past year and I'm so happy it's coming to the US with 2 of my favourite judges)

- Macademia oil treatment... dare I say it's better than Moroccan Oil. My hair has never felt better.

- big voluminous, wavy hair. I doubt I'd ever achieve J-Lo volume levels but a girl can dream, right? She looks so much better without those longggggg raggedy extensions.


- REN Clearcalm skincare range verdict: I've really been enjoying the clay cleanser. I've been using it every other morning and it leaves my skin clean and has helped regulate my oil production. The day fluid has a nice texture and works well as an oil-free primer but it smells so bad I don't think I could ever repurchase it just on that reason alone... it makes me nauseous. The night treatment is useless. I prefer my Avene Diacneal.


OUT

- Gossip Girl. Don't get me started...

- super dry feet... anyone know of a great foot treatment/cream in preparation for summer time? That PedEgg thing looks promising yet frightening at the same time.

- not having any upcoming trips planned. This needs to change ASAP.



Monday, May 2, 2011

Saturday Night Out - outfit & makeup of the day!


I haven't done an outfit post in ages, it's definitely time to change that.

This is the outfit I put together for saturday night for an outing with friends.


The tunic I am wearing is from Winners. It was all black and on sale, so last year my mom and I bought 3 and dipped them in bleach in different ways in order to change them up.
This one was crumpled up and then soaked in bleach, so almost all the black colour was gone to reveal a muddy sort of brown/beige shade. The belt was found at Winners as well.

The leggings are from Costume Dept. for Revolve.com, another sale find from two winters ago when sequins were all the rage.

The ankle boots are by Stuart Weitzman and I bought them last month in Toronto. I've been wearing them every weekend since!

Make-up wise I am wearing:

Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk foundation (#5), Benefit Hoola bronzer, NARS Madly blush,
Annabelle Demure lipliner, MAC Hue lipstick and NARS Turkish Delight lipgloss


On the eyes I wore:

MAC Constructivist paint pot all over the lid as a base,
MAC Tempting eyeshadow all over the lid,
MAC Nylon eyeshadow in the inner quarter,
MAC Bronze eyeshadow in the outer corner and on the bottom lash line,
Lancome Strass Black eyeshadow in the outer corner.
MAC Feline eyeliner and Diorshow Extase mascara.

Hope your week started off well :)

xoxo

Sandra