March 2016 Beauty & Lifestyle Favourites

Another month has, yet again, come and gone. I can't even begin to understand how quick March seemed to fly by. Today I am excited to share some rediscovered beauty favourites, along with a couple of TV shows, a tasty treat and new gym apparel. I hope you enjoy!

Beauty Favourites:
The Body Shop Radiant Highlighter
I generally gravitate to this product more during spring and summer, and lately I've loved using it as a base under my makeup. I'll combine a generous squeeze with my moisturizer and work it into my skin until completely absorbed. I love how healthy and glow-y my skin looks! It's a pink iridescent with light-reflecting particles that seem to eliminate years (fine lines and wrinkles). I'll even wear it alone on minimal makeup days to kick up my complexion. It's lightweight, non-greasy formula feels natural on the skin and doesn't make me breakout.  

C.O. Bigelow Rose Salve
I misplaced my beloved Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask a little while ago and turned to this all-purpose balm for moisturizing my lips at night. It does contain petroleum, which is an ingredient I try to avoid, but I really enjoy the slick consistency and soothing rose-extract. I also use it on my cuticles or even my nose, which seems to protest Kleenex every time I have a cold.

Dove REFRESH+CARE Invigorating Dry Shampoo
I went through several bottles of this dry shampoo when it first hit the shelves a few years ago. Unfortunately, much quicker than expected due to a packaging glitch (or bad luck). After just two or three uses the can would seem empty or lacking aerosol. It was quite frustrating and deterred me from wasting money on the product again. However, I had a change of heart recently and decided to give it one more shot. Needless to say, our relationship is back on and it is LOVE. The mist is super fine, it doesn't leave a white-cast in my hair and the smell is absolutely beautiful. Plus, after 8-9 uses the product/packaging is still going strong. We're headed in the right direction of a long and prosperous bond. 

Lifestyle Favourites:
Hungry Buddha Siracha Coconut Chips
Who would have thought coconut chips and siracha would go together? Not me! But it's magical! I love the combination of sweet and saltiness with kicks of spice. These little snacks pack powerful flavour and have quickly become a new favourite of mine.

Fuller House on Netflix
I originally wasn't going to include Fuller House as a favourite this month, because I binge watched nearly the entire season during the last couple of days in February. However, I shamelessly re-watched most of the episodes throughout March and I'm still not sick of the show. It's super cheesy and the acting is pretty bad, but for some reason the corny jokes make me laugh. I can't wait for season two!

There aren't many shows Dev and I watch together, aside from Game of Thrones, which is probably our favourite. But when the fourth season of Vikings premiered a couple of months ago, Dev convinced me to watch it along with him and now I'm hooked! It's full of mystery, drama, epic battles and twists that make my jaw drop.

Old Navy Workout Gear
With 'bikini season' around the corner I have been pretty gung-ho when it comes to working out. But sometimes I need a little motivation and buying new workout gear seems to do the trick. I recently purchased these royal blue patterned, high-waisted leggings and they are pretty comparable to more luxurious ones I own. I also love this oversized black t-shirt with key-hole back, which makes me feel a little more fashionable when sweating my balls off. The best part...this entire outfit cost me less than $30!

Do we have any favourites in common? What are some things you loved during the month of March?



#HealthyBirdy: Homemade Granola Bars

These homemade granola bars disappeared pretty quick the first time I made a batch. I'll take blame for devouring most of them, but they're just so darn delicious and satisfy my seemingly constant sweet tooth. Plus they're fairly healthy so I didn't feel too guilty. With all natural peanut butter and a mixture of nuts, they're packed full of protein and make for a great breakfast or afternoon snack. There's also very few ingredients and the recipe is super simple!

1/2 cup natural peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
1/2 cup organic honey
1 1/4 cup roughly chopped roasted, unsalted nuts
3/4 cup whole roasted, unsalted nuts
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup dried cranberries

  1. Line a 9x9 baking pan with parchment paper
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  3. Combine all ingredients into a bowl and mix well
  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and use a spoon or spatula to spread the gooey goodness into an even layer. I place a separate layer of parchment paper of the top and press firmly with my hands and fingertips to ensure all of the ingredients are packed tightly together. 
  5. Pop into the oven for 10-15 minutes.
  6. Remove and let cool before refrigerating for at least an hour. (I let mine sit overnight.)
  7. Cut into whatever size/shape bars your little heart desires. 
  8. Munch away!

Tip: these yummy bars are on the softer side, so transfer them to an airtight container or plastic bag and store them in the refrigerator. 

This recipe could easily be altered! Try tossing in some chocolate chips to please the kiddies. Or throw in some dried coconut for a tropical twist. Be experimental and find a flavour combination that suits your tastes. Just be sure to share your recipes with me...pretty please. 



Five Favourite Lip Colours for Spring

The ducks have arrived back to our pool, and in my house that means one thing...spring is in the air! The weather has been glorious, the sun is out longer and it seems like an appropriate time to talk about some of my favourite lip shades for the season.

Left to right: MAC Girl About Town, Revlon Sweetheart, Maybelline Lust for Blush, 
Essence Love Me and Revlon Tulip

To be honest, this winter hasn't actually felt that long. Mother nature took it pretty easy on us here in Canada...or perhaps it seemed easier for me working from home and not having to clear off my car every morning. I won't rub it in too much, but my point is that spring's arrival seems to have creeped up much faster than previous years. I'm somewhat sad that there wasn't more snow, but I also can't wait to chuck on some sandals and wear brighter colours...including these five lipsticks:

MAC Amplified Lipstick in Girl About Town
MAC has some pretty iconic lipsticks and I would say this is an underdog of the more popular options. It's a bright fuchsia with blue undertones, but it also has a berry hue, making it the perfect transition colour from fall to spring.  

Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Sweetheart
I've had this lipstick for a couple of years now, but after wearing it the other day and receiving tons of compliments, I realized how much I truly love it! It's a hot pink, but not super neon and adds a little brightness to any outfit on rainy spring days. It's a hybrid of a balm and stain so it feels really comfortable and lasts a long time on the lips.

Maybelline Color Sensational Creamy Matte Lipstick in Lust for Blush
A girl's got to have a good neutral, right? To be honest, this is a favourite colour all year round! I think this is my most used lipstick ever! Unlike the others in this post, this one's matte, but the formula is still super hydrating and does not dry out my lips.

Essence Longlasting Lipstick in Love Me
I can't wait to see what this colour looks like with a tan! It's a sheer salmon pink shade with a glossy finish that's bright but not too bright. I think corals are classic for spring and Love Me is a more muted option I tend to gravitate to the most.

Revlon Ultra HD Lipstick in Tulip
I love orange lipsticks!! However, I try to ease into bold colours during spring. This particular shade is lighter and leans a little more coral, which compliments my pale skin tone better. Once I've seen a little more sun I will probably opt for a brighter hue, but until then, this is my go-to!

For the most part I've moved away from the matte trend lately and I'm leaning towards moisturizing lipsticks for a healthier, more lively look. It is spring after all - the birds are signing, flowers are blooming and everything is waking up. 

What are some of your favourite lip colours for spring? 



Cinema Secrets Makes Brush Cleaning A Breeze

Ok guys, we all know how important it is to clean our makeup brushes on a regular basis and prevent bacteria from forming. But who really has the time? For me, it's not the actual washing part that's cumbersome, it's the darn drying time.

I don't have a massive collection of makeup brushes (although my mother may tell you otherwise) but sometimes I do wish that I had doubles of everything. Instead, I'm left bare-faced waiting for my damp brushes to air dry. It's not the end of the world, but I confess that it's a major reason I tend to avoid doing a deep clean as often as I should.  

I came to the realization a couple of months ago, however, that my dirty face brushes were the root of some major breakouts. In an effort to clear up my skin, I splurged on a bottle of the Cinema Secrets Makeup Brush Cleaner, which has amazing reviews on the Sephora website. 

This stuff really is amazing and super convenient! It removes traces of pigment, wax, oil and cream, instantly without the use of water. I dip the tip of a brush into solution for literally half a second and watch as the product climbs up each bristle. Once it's saturated, I swirl the brush onto a paper towel until all of the colour has been wiped away. It takes no time at all before the bristles are dry and I can use the brush once again.

I will say that it has a fairly strong, lingering, vanilla scent. It's a little too much for me, but I try not to complain because I like how quick and easy cleaning my makeup brushes has become. I also find that it dries my brushes out ever so slightly, so I do make a point of deep cleaning them with soap and water every now and then to add moisture and make them extra squeaky. 

Overall, this product is a hit in my books and cleaning my brushes has become a (less time-consuming) breeze. 

Have you tried the Cinema Secrets Makeup Brush Cleaner? What did you think?



February 2016 Beauty & Lifestyle Favourites

It's March and spring is on it's way!! If you're in Canada, don't let last night's snow storm fool you. But before we can celebrate, you know the drill, it's time for another favourites post! Here are some of the things I loved most during the month of February:

Beauty Favourites:
BH Cosmetics Glamorous Blush 10 Color Palette
For some reason I have been using the pale, pinky-peach shade (top row, second on the left) from this palette like it's going out of style. It compliments my fair skin tone and adds a subtle glow that I absolutely love!!

Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge
I've been wanting to test this beauty sponge for a while now, hoping it would indeed be a dupe for the coveted beautyblender as many would claim. It's definitely not the same but I do really like it - especially the cheaper price tag! The slanted, flat-shaped edge fits snuggly under the eyes to buff out concealer and it applies foundation flawlessly. The only downside is that it's a little too squishy when wet and seems to absorb more product than I would like. Otherwise, I'm hooked and I will probably be buying many more of these over the years.

NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Prague
NYX is finally available at Shoppers Drug Mart! I spotted the display a few weeks ago and could have easily spent too much of my pay cheque. But I didn't! I limited myself to just one item and decided on this beautiful matte lip colour. My favourite way to wear the magenta hue is with minimal makeup - some mascara and golden highlight on the cheekbones.

The formula is a nice creamy, whipped consistency that dries to a matte finish but doesn't suck the moisture from my lips. It's not exactly transfer-proof but does last a fairly long time. I can't wait to pick up some more shades to play with, especially bright ones for spring and summer!

LUSH Pink Flamingo Bubble Bar
My bubble bath stash was pretty non-existant at the beginning of February. To get my fix, I tried using shower gel but it just wasn't the same! During a recent trip to my favourite fresh handmade cosmetics store, I spotted these adorable, neon-pink flamingos and couldn't resist bringing one home with me. It's a reusable bubble bar on a stick and smells almost exactly like PEZ candy.

Lifestyle Favourites:
Alessia Cara
This Canadian artist is killing the music scene lately! My favourite songs of the moment are Wild Things and Outlaws. I actually work from home four days a week, but the one day I do go to the office I have had these songs on repeat!! They make my morning commute on the train and subway much more enjoyable.

Until next time...