February 27, 2014

Wishlist: Costume Jewelry

While fine jewelry is always nice, lately I've had my eye on some more embellished costume jewelry pieces that really make a statement.
  1. I adore House of Harlow 1960 and these Actue Earrings are extremely affordable.
  2. Though a huge splurge, this amazing Naga Gold and Silver Lava Dragon Ring by John Hardy features African rubies, black sapphire, and white sapphire and is sure to be a conversation starter.
  3. Brownie Sparkles is a local online jewelry shop with a fun selection of jewelry, like this Butter Gunmetal Red Leather Rhinestone Bracelet.
  4. ALEX AND ANI Birthstone Bangles are sold individually and worn alone for a more delicate look but I personally love them stacked.

February 24, 2014

LOFT launches nail polish!

That's right, LOFT of Ann Taylor/LOFT is launching a nail polish line! With twelve shades to start and retailing at $6.50, the polishes all appear to be cream formulas in a range of wearable but on-trend colours.

I'm always intrigued when clothing retailers decide to branch out into beauty because sometimes the products turn out to be unnecessary and disappointing money grabs. In rare cases, however, they can be standalone hits (Joe Fresh is a good example).

I was lucky enough to get a sneak preview of LOFT's own offerings when PR sent over a bottle for me to try, and I have to say that I was actually quite impressed.

Simply called Blue, this polish is more of a periwinkle than a true blue but right up my alley colour-wise. The formula was creamy but not watery (think American Apparel nail polish) and was easily opaque in just one coat though I did two for good measure. Isn't it so pretty?

Now for the bad news: as of right now, this new nail polish line will only be launching in the US due to importing complications. However, I'm holding out hope that us Canadians will get it soon. After all, Vancouver did only just get a LOFT store.

February 20, 2014

Revlon Makes Me Blush

This year I seem to have gone a little overboard on the Valentine's Day posts (see here, here, and here) which is a little strange given the fact that I don't even like Valentine's Day that much... but anyway, now that the holiday has come and gone, here's one last post to round things out!

Last week, Revlon e-mailed me a fun online quiz to discover my perfect date night personality. Based on the results, they then sent over a carefully curated selection of products to help me embrace my inner "Romance Lover." Side note: how cute is the card illustrated by the super talented Sayaka Molatalab?

For a flirty finish, Revlon recommended combining the Highlighting Palette in Rose Glow ($12.95 CAD) with a pinch of their new Cream Blush in Flushed ($11.95 CAD) on the apples of my cheeks. Rose Glow features five complementary shimmer shades that can be blended together to illuminate the skin or used separately for contouring. It's a similar concept to Bobbi Brown's popular Shimmer Bricks though this particular one seems less pigmented and more shimmery. Topped with Flushed, my cheeks got a great wash of colour and I love the chic pot packaging, which reminds me a bit of MAC's Tinted Lip Conditioners.

Coquette (also worn above) is one of 10 shades in the ColorBurst Lacquer Balm ($9.95 CAD) line. It feels super comfortable on the lips and imparts a shiny, juicy-looking pink colour. Like all the other products in the ColorBurst Crayon Collection, it smells like peppermint and comes in super adorable chubby pencil packaging with a twist-up bottom so no sharpening is required.

For an alternative lip look, there is also the ColorBurst Matte Balm in Showy ($9.95 CAD). A cool-toned fuschia pink, it's pigmented with a velvety matte finish (I wouldn't call it a true matte). You need to make sure your lips are properly prepped because it will definitely show any and all flakes.

And lastly, Bubbly Nail Polish is a bubblegum pink cream that reminds me of Essie Pink Parka but slightly less neon. Like many creams, the formula is difficult to work with leaving some streaks/patches. I do really like the colour though, so it's a keeper for me. Thankfully it's not expensive and you can often find these polishes on sale!

February 17, 2014

The Turtleneck Appreciation Club

I've had an aversion to turtlenecks for the longest time, which I think has something to do with wearing them a lot as a kid in the early 90s and feeling like they're dated (which is totally not the case anymore). Anyway, I'm happy to report that I have a new-found appreciation for turtlenecks! My thin black one has become a layering staple for both work and play, and this Vince sweater is getting a ton of wear lately as well. I wonder what the next thing I'll rediscover from my childhood will be... maybe matching sweatsuits?

Sweater: Vince (here) / Leggings: H&M (similar) / Booties: Topshop (similar)
Bag: Chanel / Earrings: House of Harlow 1960 (here)
Gold Ring: Michael Kors (stacked version)

February 13, 2014

Valentine's Day FOTD: Lise Watier Imagine Collection

As I've mentioned before, I don't really celebrate Valentine's Day but when Lise Watier's Imagine Collection showed up in my mailbox I knew it was perfect for a themed makeup look. Released for Spring 2014, the collection features beautiful watercolour packaging (see what it looks like here) and delicate colours based around a perfectly pink palette. I usually stay away from pink eyeshadows because they make me look tired but this particular shade of pink seems to suit my skintone just fine.

The collection features a few limited edition items like the gorgeous mosaic blush and eyeshadow palette pictured below. Both are only available until April so you'll want to get your hands on them before they sell out. Lise Watier has also introduced a few new products into their regular line, including the Magic Lip Colour Enhancer which adjusts to your lips' pH levels for a customized colour (obsessed!).

Here's what I used to create this FOTD:

Imagine Blush, Quatuor Imagine Eyeshadow Quartet
Duo Glam Rouge Infini Lipstick Duo in Tender Pink Glam (regular product),
and Waterproof Eyeliner in Smokey Grey (regular product)

This look was also recently featured on the FASHION Magazine Beauty Panel. Be sure to check out that post for the full list of all the products used. HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!

February 11, 2014

Valentine's Day Nail Art

With Valentine's Day coming up this Friday, I have been sporting some appropriately pink & red heart-adorned nails. I suppose I'm trying to make up for neglecting last year's Valentine's mani (though you can still see my ones from 2011 and 2012).

Check out my post on POPSUGAR for full details on how to get the look. And while you're at it, be sure to check out some of the other blog posts I've written as a member of the POPSUGAR Beauty Select!

Essie My Better Half, Avon Nail Art Enamel in Cupid and Real Red

February 8, 2014

Facial & Indian Head Massage at 4 Angels Beauty Care Inc.

Yesterday, I took up local business 4 Angels Beauty Care Inc. on their invite to come in and "treat [myself] to something heavenly." I have been feeling a bit stressed lately, so I opted for a combination of an Illu-Mini Facial ($30) and Indian Head Massage ($35).

After being introduced to Navkiran, one of the friendly co-owners, she sat me down in one of their comfy salon-style chairs and got to work. 4 Angels uses France Laure products for all of their facials, picking out individual products suited to your skin. My skin tone was a bit uneven so Navkiran decided to use an exfoliating peel to even it out and improve the texture. There are no extractions involved as it's just a mini facial but it would be perfect for a quick lunchtime pick-me-up if you work in the area.

Next was the Indian Head Massage, which was a new experience for me. Using your choice of oil (I chose olive oil), this traditional massage is intended to increase circulation and encourage mental alertness while leaving hair shiny and stimulating hair growth. It starting out quite fast (a little strange but not uncomfortable) before slowing down to a more relaxing sensation. You probably wouldn't want to get this done before needing to go out somewhere, however, as the oil does leave your hair greasy and must stay on for 1-2 hours.

In addition to the treatments I received, 4 Angels specializes in brow threading and waxing but also offers a range of other unique services such as sari wrapping and henna. Plus, there's always a little something extra thrown in, like a relaxing massage, for busy women (or men) who need a bit of pampering. 

Address: 1342 Burrard Street, Vancouver, BC
Website: http://4angelsbeautycare.com/

February 5, 2014

Leopard Pumps

Speaking of wishlists, I was finally able to check an item off my Pre-Fall wishlist a few months ago when I purchased these leopard pumps. I always knew there was a need for them in my wardrobe but until I got this pair I didn't realize just how much I'd actually wear them!

Sweater: Billabong (c/o West 49) (also here) / Vest: Club Monaco (in black)
Pants: Gap (here) / Pumps: Michael Kors (same style or similar) / Bag: Mulberry (here)
Necklace: House of Harlow 1960 (similar) / Watch: Michael Kors (here)

February 2, 2014

LUSH Valentine's Day 2014

You can always count on LUSH Cosmetics for a good holiday/seasonal collection and their Valentine's Day offerings are no exception. These goodies are perfect for gifting or treating yourself... and if the mood is right, maybe even a couples pampering night? The company kindly sent over a few products for me to play with and I have been dying over how cute they are.

Close To You Massage Bar ($7.95 CAD): I've never used a massage bar before but I can definitely see their appeal. This one features a fondant centre and the same fragrance as Rock Star soap and Creamy Candy bubble bar from LUSH's permanent line. It's supposed to smell like vanilla but I think it leans more bubble gum, so would appeal to fans of that type of scent.

Neon Love Soap ($6.95 CAD): With a heart inlay (though my slice unfortunately got cut off), this soap is sure to make any shower a fun time. The brand new fragrance mixes bergamot, rosewood, and cinnamon with passion fruit juice to cleanse and soya yogurt to nourish and soften skin.

Prince Charming Shower Gel ($9.95/100 mL): I always love LUSH's shower gels and this one doesn't disappoint. Scented with soft marshmallow root and Fair Trade vanilla pod infusion, it smells absolutely divine.

Love Locket Bath Bomb ($10.95 CAD): This giant bath bomb is made with a blend of uplifting and sensual oils, including vanilla, jasmine and neroli. It does cost more than a regular bath bomb but the price seems justified due to its size and the fact that it's 3 baths in one. You can use each half and the inner heart individually but if you want to be super indulgent, you can also throw the entire thing in the bath tub at once.

Find these and other limited edition Valentine's Day products online or in-stores now.

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