May 29, 2013

mark. Marrakesh Collection

Cosmetics companies are really killing it with their summer collections this year. In addition to MAC's Baking Beauties and Lise Watier's India Gold (both of which I've posted about), I was recently introduced to the mark. Marrakesh Collection, inspired by one of Morocco's most historic imperial cities.

The Marrakesh Color Collection includes the Exotic Hues Eyeshadow Trio, two Nailed It Mini Nail Lacquers, and an Exotic Beauty Face Mosaic. The Exotic Hues shadows were inspired by the vibrant spices found in the city's souks and are baked for long-lasting wear (they work best used wet, in my opinion). The nail polishes come in Saffron, a glistening warm gold, and Mint Tea, a shimmering green. Both are opaque in two coats but a little streaky because they're frosts. Out of all the products, however, the Face Mosaic powder is my absolute favourite. The shades of coral, gold and bronze can be swirled together to create a radiant glow.

In addition to the Color Collection, the Marrakesh Instant Vacation Eau De Toilette Spray combines an exotic blend of Moroccan jasmine, neroli blossoms, spicy cardamom, wild fig, and crushed mint. As I'm sure you can imagine based on the description, it's a delicious and seductive fragrance that's perfect for summer. I personally love the scent though I think some people might find it too sweet and cloying.

The mark. Marrakesh collection is limited edition and available through AVON independent sales representatives, 1-800-265-AVON, or online.

May 26, 2013

Clinique A Different Nail Enamel for Sensitive Skins

Last month, Clinique introduced an innovative new line of nail polish, A Different Nail Enamel for Sensitive Skins, which is currently creating a lot of buzz in the beauty world. However, if your initial reaction is similar to mine, you're probably wondering what effect nail polish could possibly have on the skin since, as we all know, it goes on our nails.

L-R: Hula Skirt, Strappy Sandals, Summer in the City, Black Honey, Base/Top Coat

Turns out regular nail polish can be a significant allergen for people with sensitive eyes and skin, resulting in itchy, watery eyes (we touch them constantly without even thinking about it) and uncomfortable rashes. It only makes sense that Clinique, a company known for its sensitive skin products, would be behind this dermatologist- and ophthalmologist-approved nail polish formula. The result: A Different Nail Enamel, a line consisting of 12 regular polishes, 9 limited edition shades released for Summer 2013, and a combination base/top coat said to prevent chips for at least seven days.

I can't personally comment on the polish's hypoallergenic qualities, but I do think some of the summer colours I received from Clinique and Vervegirl are especially great for pedicures. I opted for Hula Skirt, my personal favourite. Under indoor lighting I initially thought this polish looked a little like OPI Mermaid's Tears but they are not dupes at all. The green is more apparent under natural light and super pretty.

I decided add a little extra sparkle by applying a second polish in a diagonal across the bottom half of my big toenails. I used Strappy Sandals, which appears to be the only metallic in the Clinique collection so far. I love the silvery finish and it applies much more smoothly than my similar Butter London Lillibet's Jubilee. I then finished up with a few nail decals from Daiso.

And that's it, sandal-ready toes! Now if only I was still in Hawaii...

May 23, 2013

Aloha, Hawaii!

It's hard to believe that less than 48 hours ago I was in Hawaii... I know I've barely even been home but I swear I'm already experiencing post-vacation beach and hot weather withdrawal! Of course, there are thankfully tons of photos to remind me of the wonderful time I had, and I will definitely be sharing a few in the next little while. In the meantime, be sure to check out my Instagram for some sneak peeks!

Dress: Urban Heritage / Bracelet: mark. (c/o) / Flower Hairpin: ABC Stores (Hawaii)

May 12, 2013

Summer Bright FOTD: Lise Watier India Gold

Rounding up my seasonal Lise Watier FOTDs (see Fall, Holiday Party, and Spring), today I've got a bright summer look featuring the new India Gold Collection.

After an epic visit to India in 2012, Madame Watier and her creative team developed this stunning eponymous collection, infused with bold, rich shades. I especially love the purple tones throughout, so I decided to create this more colourful look accented with pink and gold.

Isn't the packaging gorgeous? All of these products really put me in a summery mood. Plus, I'm leaving for Hawaii tomorrow so I have particularly been feeling the summer love. Here's what I used:

Gloss Bollywood, Nail Lacquer in Sundara, Blush-On Powder in Rose Éclat, Palette India Eyeshadows

Lise Watier's India Gold is limited edition and available in stores and online until the end of July 2013. See the rest of the collection HERE.

May 9, 2013

ghd Candy Styler Tutorial: Retro-Inspired Glamour Waves

ghd has long been hailed as one of the best (if not the best) brand of hair straighteners around. I'd wanted one for ages but eventually put the purchase on hold for what I thought were very practical reasons. Since my hair is naturally straight I figured spending money on a flat iron didn't make much sense, even if it did have additional styling capabilities apart from just straightening. I finally got the chance to check this straightener off my lust list when ghd (which stands for "good hair day") sent me one of their new Candy Stylers. Well, apparently I've been missing out all these years!

Inspired by retro sweetshop favourites, the candy collection features the ghd IV styler in three limited edition colours: mint, lemon, and violet. I opted for the mint, which is super cute.

While I don't have much personal experience with hair straighteners, I've found the Candy Styler very easy to use. The ceramic plates heat up quickly and the 2.8 metre swivel cord makes handling a breeze. Plus, the curved barrel means you can also use the straightener to curl or wave your hair.

I've really been liking the side-swept glamour waves a lot of celebrities have been sporting on the red carpet (for example, Jessica Alba and J. Lo) so I thought I'd put together a tutorial on how you can use the ghd Candy Styler to get a similar look.

First, start by combing your hair to get out any knots and spray on a heat protectant (I'm currently using Tresemmé Heat Tamer Protective Spray).

Next, take a section of hair and place it in the ghd Candy Styler as if you're about to straighten it. Turn the styler outwards (away from your face), wrapping the hair around it. Pull the styler all the way down the length of your hair, creating a curl. This part can be a little tricky but holding onto the ends of the hair as you're turning and pulling helps a lot. Repeat until all of your hair has been curled.

Once your whole head is done, brush or comb out the curls (I'm using a pick comb) to create softer waves. Apply a mousse or serum like UNITE Shina Liquid Gloss for smooth, shiny hair and to keep it in place.

Lastly, bobby pin your hair to one side and the look is complete!

ghd's hairstyles inspirations page has a lot of other great ideas on how the Candy Styler can be used. I can't wait to experiment some more with mine!

May 5, 2013

Stripes & White (Denim)

Since I just love how white denim can instantly brighten up an outfit, I've decided to give white jeans another go this season. Fingers crossed I don't end up ruining these in some unfortunate messy food accident!

Top: T. Babaton (Aritzia) (similar) / Jacket: Urban Planet (similar)
Jeans: 7 For All Mankind (here) / Booties: Rachel Comey (here)
Bag: ASOS (c/o) (here) / Bracelet: Marc By Marc Jacobs

P.S. Thanks to the team at Pink Pearl PR for the recent Fashion Friday feature! Be sure to check out my interview to learn a bit more about me and this blog.

May 4, 2013

Join Light Activewear's Mission for a Cleaner Planet!

After returning home from my 5 months in Calgary, I found an awesome personal trainer who has really helped me kick my fitness routines into gear. Remember that goal I had of learning to deadlift? Well, it's been achieved... in fact, I can now deadlift more than my own body weight! 

Since I've been spending a lot of my free time at the gym, my workout wardrobe has grown considerably (feeling comfortable without looking sloppy can be an excellent motivator) and while I've been a Lululemon devotee since 2005, I'm always on the lookout for new brands. Light Activewear, another Vancouver-based company, is one of my recent finds. I wore my new Lydia Tank Top to the gym a few days ago and received a ton of compliments... it's so cute!

As a responsible business, Light Activewear is also striving to bring more sustainable, earth-friendly clothing into their collection and have recently launched the We Care Campaign on Indiegogo to raise the money to do so.

All items from the We Care Collection will be made from 100% recycled polyester and a unique blend of "Dope Dyed Yarn." By contributing to the campaign, you can be one of the first to own a piece (or pieces) from the new line, including the Anna Tee, Pearl Pant, and Darla Jacket.

The company is hoping to raise $10,000 by June 6, 2013 and they're currently a little more than halfway towards their goal. For the month of May, every piece sold from the campaign will be matched with the donation of one Light Activewear item to the Vancouver Rape Relief & Women's Shelter, and once they reach the 100% mark, 10 donors will also win a personalized Anna Tee! Be sure to check out the campaign page to learn more.

May 1, 2013

Prepping for a Beach Vacation: Schick Intuition

It's the beginning of May, which means the countdown to my Hawaii vacation has now begun! As with any holiday, I've been getting into prep mode by hunting down suitable vacation clothes (in this case, bathing suits and maxi dresses) and deciding what toiletries I'll need to bring (SPF is at the top of my list). Even though I'm not leaving for another two weeks, these activities are all part of my "I'm so excited I just can't wait" process which I'm sure some of you can also relate to.

Since I'm planning on spending a lot of time on the beach, one of the items that will definitely be accompanying me on my trip is my Schick Intuition Razor. Isn't the pink polka-dot handle adorable?

My favourite thing about this razor is that I don't need shaving cream or body wash to use it. This means I'll have extra room in my luggage for other vacation necessities! Instead, I simply wet the Skin Conditioning Solid and it lathers and moisturizes my skin all while giving a super close shave.

If I want to change things up, Schick also offers four different varieties of Skin Conditioning Solid refills:

Pure Nourishment refills with coconut milk and almond oil (pack of 3)
Naturals Sensitive Care refills with 100% natural aloe and vitamin E (pack of 3)
Renewing Moisture refills with pomegranate extract (pack of 3)
Advanced Moisture refills with shea butter (pack of 3)

I'm currently using the Advanced Moisture Skin Conditioning Solid because my skin is super dry but I also love the fruity pomegranate scent of the Renewing Moisture.

Refills are available at grocery, drug and mass retail outlets across Canada for approximately $11.99 (pack of 3) and $20.99 (pack of 6).The Schick Intuition Moisturizing Care Pack, which includes the same limited edition handle as mine and two Skin Moisturizing Solids, will be available June 2013 for approximately $11.99.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Schick but all opinions, as always, are my own.

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