Thursday, 14 July 2016

My Beach Essentials

The beach is always a must for me in the summer! I love the water, crashing waves, sand, beach food and just hanging out with family or friends. Coming back from a mini beach trip always makes me feel fresh and revitalized! Since the beach is a rare occasion for me, a lot goes into planning the perfect beach weekend. This definitely means that I carefully consider my beach essentials and what I should bring along for the ride. Today on the blog, I thought I would share my beach essentials!

A Big Beach Bag
A big beach bag is a must! You can't bring along everything else that you want unless you have a bag to store it all in! My husband gifted me this Guess bag a few years ago for my birthday and I use it specifically for going to the beach. I love that it can be a stylish accessory to complete my beach outfit. I also love that it can fit a lot and it's functional.

Swimsuit Cover Up
I got a cover up only a few months ago when I traveled south for vacation. I have no idea why I didn't have one in my life sooner! While I like to relax in a swimsuit, sometimes there's a brisk breeze as the sun sets and the cover up is great to shield against that. I also use it to shield against the sun during the day if I don't want to get burned as much. Really cute accessory for the beach day attire!

A Good Book
I'm a huge book lover and most days you will find me reading at some part of the day. However, there's just something magical about reading on the beach in a nice comfy chair, with the sun beating down, fresh air all around you and water nearby. There's just something very calming and relaxing about it. While I wouldn't spend the entire beach trip reading (I would make sure that I enjoy the water and be social!), there's a very high chance you will find me reading.

Sun Hat
I am not a hat type of girl. In fact the only time you will find me wearing a hat is when I am at the beach! Ha! A sun hat is essential for me at the beach to protect myself against the strong rays. Depending on what time of day you are at the beach, the sun can cause skin burn and possibly even lead to dehydration. It's so important to protect yourself against the sun! I choose to do this in a stylist way with a cute sun hat!

Moisturizing Lip Balm
Lips are another body part that can become dehydrated from the sun. Lips can become cracked and dry and no one likes that. I always ensure that I have a very moisturizing lip balm on hand while the sun is beating. Feel free to re-apply frequently. Consistent eating and sipping of drinks can wear off lip balm fairly quickly. Burt's Bee's Lip Balm in Mango is my go-to for the beach because the flavour reminds me of the tropics!

I hope you all enjoyed this blog post! I had fun creating this post as the beach is always a fun time for me! I always look forward to going every year when summer rolls around. I would love to hear in the comments below, some of your beach essentials!

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Friday, 8 July 2016

5 of My Favourite Summertime Beauty Products : A Collab with Katelyn Blogs

It has been super hot where I live! I've been trying to enjoy it as much as possible since we only get a couple of months of summer... With the hot, steamy weather I've been thinking about talking about my favourite summertime beauty products! I have so many, that it was really difficult to narrow it down to just five. What can I say? Summertime is just a special time!

Speaking of special, this post is also special as I am collaborating with the ever-so-fabulous Katelyn Brewer of Katelyn Blogs! She's such an awesome blogger and has so many beauty, blogging and lifestyle tips. Check out her blog here! Thanks Katelyn for collaborating with me on this blog post! I know this is a topic we're both passionate about :)

St. Ives Pink Lemon & Mandarin Body Wash
I'm usually a Bath and Body Works kind of girl when it comes to body wash. However, one day I was strolling down the toiletries aisle at Walmart and came across this St. Ives Pink Lemon body wash. I smelt it and I was sold! This particular scent smells like everything tropical, sunshine and beach - combined! It smells so good! Using this in the shower sets the tone for my summer evenings. I also love that there is a little bit of texture which helps to get rid of all the dead skin.

Essie Nail Polish 'Cute As A Button'
I love this corally-pink-orange-y shade for summer! For me, nothing says summer more than coral. Naturally, it's always a given that I will use this colour very often in the summer months. If you haven't already, you should check out my previous blog post where I talk about my favourite essie nail polishes for summer. As you can already guess, this is one of the shades I talk about.

Becca Ever Matte Poreless Priming Protector
I'm one of the lucky few who have been blessed with oily skin... :( :( :( . So, all year around I always try my best to use a primer under my foundation. This is particularly important in the summer months when the weather gets extremely hot. My favourite primer is Becca. It's great because it's light weight and glides on easy. You only need a little bit of product, so your purchase will last you a long time! There's only so much that you can blot throughout the day!

Foot Masks
I find in the summer months that my feet tend to become rough very quickly. I'll get a pedicure one day and a few days later, my feet are rough again! I found that the best way to keep feet looking their best in summer sandals, is by using a foot mask. If you follow me on Instagram, you would know that I recently bought an olive oil foot mask in Vancouver that I can't wait to try! Stay tuned as I plan to write a review. If you're not a fan of foot masks, I also like to soak my feet in Epsom salts and warm water.

Batiste Dry Shampoo
Going hand in hand with my oil skin is my oily hair... I find that in the colder months I can really control the oil by using a shampoo for oily hair. However, in the summer months I find this much harder to do. To help with this, I like to use the Batiste dry shampoo. I mostly use it on my second day hair. Spray, style your hair and your ready with perfect summer hair to combat the heat!

Well, I hope you've enjoyed reading about my favourite summertime beauty products. Be sure to sign up for email notifications to keep updated with the blog! Thanks again to Katelyn for collaborating with me on this post. Don't forget to check out her blog to read all about her favourite summertime beauty products - Katelyn Blogs! If you like our collaboration, please let us know in the comments below.

What are your favourite summertime beauty products?


Sunday, 3 July 2016

My 4 Favourite Essie Nail Polishes for Summer

It's finally summer! The start of summer means lots of things... like BBQs, the beach, cold drinks, dresses and summertime nail polish! If you're like me, then you'll also have specific nail polish colours for each season of the year. While I may pull out my summer nail polish colours during the Winter season, I usually wait to use these colours when summer has officially arrived. If you really know me, you`ll know that my entire nail polish collection consists of Essie nail polishes. So, today I'm going to talk about my four favourite Essie nail polishes for summer! I was inspired to do this blog post by A Girl, Obsessed!

Hubby For Dessert
I know, such a weird name... but I love this light, sheer, lilac colour for those days when I'm looking for a nude colour but with something a little extra. I usually wear this colour for daily manicures. This is also the perfect colour for those summer events such as weddings or showers. You would definitely need at least three coats for the full purple effect. If you don`t care for the purple effect, you can get away with about two coats.

Really Red
Next up is a classic red - 'really red'! A classic red is a 'must' for summer months! If you are looking for a true red that is the perfect, rich red colour, then look no further. Two coats of this classic makes the perfect pedicure with a cute pair of sandals for a night out on the town. Even though this is a summer pick for me, you could get away with wearing this colour during any season of the year.

Cute As A Button
When I think of summer, my mind always thinks about coral-ly pinks and 'cute as a button' fits this description so perfectly! It's the perfect shade for your beach trip or your summertime vacation. I usually like to wear this colour as a pedicure. Two coats are needed to freshen up your beauty summertime look!

Mint Candy Apple
This has been one of my favourites for a very long time! For me, mint will always be a favourite. This shade is a creme based nail polish that has a pastel green finish. I can wear this colour for either a pedicure or manicure. If I'm looking for a colour to have a little fun, I will usually pick this. This colour needs about two coats.

What are your all time favourite Essie nail polishes for summer?


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Thursday, 16 June 2016

The Magic of Tidying and How Its Helped Me

I've always been a person who likes order, organization and tidying. Even as a child, I would constantly rearrange my room for maximum tidying effectiveness. When I came across Marie Kondo's book called 'Spark Joy' I was very intrigued at the idea of 'how much more 'tidy' could I really be?' If you step into any of my personal spaces, I think you would say that I am a pretty tidy and organized person.

'Spark Joy' is the second book that Marie Kondo has written after completing her first book: 'The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up'. 'Spark Joy' really intrigued me after I listened to an audio book of Marie's first book. I was in the book store after the new year and saw 'Spark Joy'. It's a little different than her first book as 'Spark Joy' has illustrations of the folding techniques she describes, which I really like.

In a nutshell, 'Spark Joy' is all about getting rid of things that do not spark joy. It's about surrounding yourself with only those things that bring you the absolute most joy and love. Through the KonMari method (described in detail in the first book), she recommends that you hold each item and embrace it to see if it truly brings joy. While this sounds really weird... it totally works!

The New Year's resolutions had hit me in a big way and I was searching for the perfect challenge to start off the new year. That's when I decided to complete the Whole 30 challenge and tackle tidying my entire house after reading 'Spark Joy'. You can read about my Whole 30 challenge here!

I started to tidy back in November when I listened to her audio book. In that month I tackled the first category that she suggests, which was clothes! Clothes was a huge category. Between my husband and I, we donated about 5 garbage bags worth of clothes! It was a tedious process, but it was well worth it. We felt as if we had shed about 20 pounds after all was said and done. Then the holidays rolled around and we didn't end up tidying anything else. Then, I was re-inspired when I read 'Spark Joy' in the new year to tackle the rest of the house. Between January to April we went through every other category that she talks about in the book. This means every-single-room and every-single-object that we owned was 'reexamined' for its joy factor.

Most weekends we dedicated a few hours to tidying and eventually we got to it all! All in all, we ended up getting rid of 1,539 items! Everything from socks, books, stationary, electronics, tools, kitchen gadgets were all included. The most items that were thrown away were shirts (40), earrings (60), books/magazines (200), CDs (69), loyalty cards (50), buttons (170), papers (4 garbage bags) and fortunes from fortune cookies (50) - I know really random. Items that were reusable we ended up donating. In fact, we had about 15 boxes of items picked up for donations!

Our house is very small and my husband and I have lived here for close to three years. We thought that we had not accumulated a lot of things, but somehow, we did! Behind the dressers, closets, cardboard boxes and cupboards, there were a lot of things that we weren't using or that didn't spark joy. By all means we are not hoarders. If you came to our house pre-tidying stages, you would have had no idea about our 'things' since I was always particular about organizing.

For the most part, the house looks exactly the same as it did before. What is different are the items behind all the drawers, doors and closets. Everything has been organized in a more logical and effective way that has made our everyday life easier. Since the book shows you all the folding, sorting and categorizing techniques, it was so easy to achieve an organized space! Also, our basement has been completely cleared out of all cardboard boxes and is fully functional for workout routines. We don't have as much stuff anymore.

In fact, both of us have noticed that the feeling of walking into our home is different. It feels lighter, fresher, more positive and filled with energy. I think this also translates directly to how we feel when we're at home. We generally feel lighter with a lot more positive energy. I'm not sure if it's my mind or an actual thing but whatever it is, it's made a difference in our lives. The other thing that has really been beneficial is that we love every-single-object that is in our home. Everything from a glass to a t-shirt, board games and memorabilia. What we particularly love about this is that we can use the things we love more often, during everyday of our lives. What's the point of keeping your most precious china in a box when you can't use it? Today is the perfect day to break out the china and use your most fancy bed sheets! 

I'm not saying that the Marie Kondo's way of tidying is what everyone should do. For me, it worked and I really like the method. It has made a tremendous difference in my life and how I feel as a person. It has made me feel positive, light, happy, full of energy, healthy, not dependent on material objects and I have less (if at all any) day to day tidying. For others, tidying may not just be for them. Some of us thrive in disorganization and chaos and I think that's okay. Some of us like our homes to be constantly lived in with objects and items. Again, that's okay. I think it's important for all of us to recognize our style and live up to that style! 

Let me know down below what you think about the magic of tidying!


Thursday, 2 June 2016

Are you going to GOMO this summer?

I hope that title got your attention! And if it did you're probably wondering what the term "GOMO" means? ......Going Out More Often! I am a big believer in creating memories that will last a life time. I think we live in a world that depends a lot on materialistic items more so than creating real connection and experience. This is where GOMO comes into play. This summer, I challenge you to GOMO! I'm participating in this challenge as well! It's about time we step out of our shells and create memories that lasts a lifetime. Here are some of the ways in which I plan on GOMO!

1. Beach Day
Going to the beach in the summer is a must for me, the hubby and la familia! I love the beach and all it's natural beauty. There's so much to take in and absorb: from the sandy shores, to the water, blue skies and crashing waves. A beach day is not complete without all of my cousins and family members... and of course food! I'm definitely looking forward to this summer's beach day where we can all just chill, relax and spend quality family time together.

2. High Tea
Don't judge... but I've always wanted to try the whole high tea experience! I'm a die-hard Downton Abbey fan and ever since I've fell in love with the show I've always wanted that old time, Victorian-era, high tea experience. There are many places that offer the high tea experience. I particularly want to high tea in an old, rustic downtown hotel. I have my eyes on a few places already! I'm definitely looking forward to enjoying an evening in the downtown core, strolling around while ending the evening with a lovely high-tea experience filled with tea and scones!

3. Paint Nite
If you're are not familiar with Paint Nite, it's a set amount of time where you are taught how to paint a particular picture with an artist. Paint Nites usually take place at a bar/restaurant setting so you can order drinks and appetizers. You pay to take the painting piece home with you. It seems as if this is the new trend for social activities. I have to be honest - I'm definitely going to be splurging on creativity this summer! This would be a neat experience while out on the town, sipping on drinks and appetizers. I'm really looking forward to experiencing this (and hanging up my masterpiece!).

4. Mini Trip
I'm going to Vancouver and Seattle this summer! I'll be going due to work, but I've decided to add a extra few days while I'm there. I have family out there so it should be fun! I've always wanted to go visit the 'other' side of North America/Canada. I'm really excited to see the natural beauty of Vancouver and explore the downtown core of Seattle. Of course I'm looking forward to all the yummy foods I'll be trying as well. Every city has it's own feel and character and I'm really excited to discover this in these cities.

This is my GOMO plan for the summer!Take the challenge and just go out more often! If you're ever stuck on ideas on what new experiences, events or shows to try, you can always check out EventBrite. You can search by location to view what new events are happening in your area. Or, maybe you want to create your own local event! EventBrite has their own page for event management online where you can find here.

Creating memories, building experiences and doing something that you love is essential to your overall welling as a person. When's there's something for us to look forward to or something we get super excited about, it builds happiness and overall good health. We're less prone to feeling sad or unhappy. Feeling good is the best 'makeup' you can ever invest in.

I'm really excited to know how you are going to GOMO this summer! Let me know in the comments below or connect with me on Instagram!


Sunday, 29 May 2016

What Every Contact Lens User Should Know

I've been wearing contact lens for 11 years now! That's a long time.. In that time, I have learned a lot about proper handling techniques for contact lens along with general tips and tricks. Some tips I learned when I first started wearing contacts and others I've learned throughout the years. I don't see a lot of talk about tips and tricks about this topic and I thought that I could share some of what I have learned. Contact lens are tricky because one small thing could cause an infection or irritation. They are simple to use but not nearly as simple as one may think. I always recommend that you consult your eye doctor first before using contact lens. Of course, I am not a professional but here is what every contact lens user should know (in my opinion)!

1. Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap before touching your eyes or contact lenses.
2. Dry your hands using a towel or paper towel. This will prevent lint from sticking onto your fingers and travelling onto your contact lens. A piece of lint can easily scratch the eye or your contact lens.
3. Change your contact lens case frequently. Unwanted bacteria and dirt can build up after prolonged use.
4. Don't stock up on contact lens solution as they have expiry dates. Always check the expiry dates before using a new bottle of contact lens solution.
5. Before using a new set of contact lenses, be sure to wash them thoroughly in contact solution. You never know how they were packed.
6. Only wear your contact lenses for the duration they are made for. IE: don't wear daily contacts for a week at a time.
7. Beware of your contact lens around long nails! Your nails could end up scratching or tearing your lens.
8. Long nails are more prone to trapping dirt and bacteria which could cause infections when handling your contact lens. Try to get them at a reasonable and hygienic length.
9. Even though you may be tempted to wear contact lens for prolonged periods of time, it's best to always give your eyes a break by giving them some extra oxygen love.
10. Contact lens have expiry dates too! Check before you use them.

Do you have any tips and tricks for contact lenses?


Sunday, 15 May 2016

10 Uses for Q-Tips

So many of us forget about q-tips in our grooming routines. I'm sure many of us have an unopened pack under the sink or in our linen closet. When we think about q-tips, we usually think about the traditional uses such as making our ears squeaky clean. However, there are so many other uses for q-tips than just the conventional way. There's so much big potential in these little guys! I thought it would be fun to put together a list of 10 uses for q-tips!

1. Dip your q-tip in nail polish remover to clean up the nail polish around the edges of your nails.
2. Use them to make designs on your nails by dipping in nail polish.
3. You can apply eye shadow in the crease or the inner corner of your eyelid using a q-tip.
4. Use a q-tip to create a smudged look with your eyeliner.
5. Mix your pigment with a mixing agent by using a q-tip.
6. Apply liquid lip gloss from a tube or in a palette using a q-tip.
7. Mix different lip colours to create a new lip colour by using a q-tip.
8. Clean up a makeup mistake by dipping in makeup remover (ie. applying eyeliner).
9. If you are going to pop a pimple, don't use your fingers! Use q-tips!
10. Apply eye brow gel or powder by using a q-tip.

As you can see, q-tips are a great, inexpensive and versatile tool to keep around the house. These are only a few uses for q-tips but I am sure there are so many other things you could do with them. Let me know what are your top uses for q-tips both beauty, wellness or other related. I would love to know!