Monday, July 29, 2013

Mani Event With SpaRitual

I'm not going to lie, there are definitely some perks to my job - Pro discount on certain makeup brands, free products to review on my blog and invites to different beauty events around the city!  Last week I was lucky enough to be invited to SpaRitual's Beauty Event to introduce their upcoming Holiday nail polish line to Toronto's most influential beauty bloggers (apparently sometimes I'm lucky enough to be included in this group lol).

The event was held  Elixir Organic Spa and not only did it include relaxing manicures but we also got to nibble on some delicious vegan treats and sip some yummy wine while we waited and mingled.  The whole line of nail polish as well as spa lotions and creams are vegan which I really like.  As well all of their nail lacquers and nail care products are free of DBP, toulene, formaldehyde and formaldehyde resin!

The manicure was lovely and relaxing and also included a massage w/ SpaRitual's amazing Hand Print Hand Serum and Hand Print Hand Salve which were both very moisturizing w/out leaving my hands feeling greasy. One thing I especially liked was that even the nail polish remover products smelled great!

For colour I ended up going w/ Improvisation - a really shimmery pink shade which goes on light but once you add the second layer the pink iridescence really starts to come through.  One thing that makes this Holiday Collection unique is that it's infused w/ recycled glass beads that magnify vibrant colours.  I should also note that I had the manicure last week and my colour and nails are still looking great!

I was lucky enough to walk away w/ the whole holiday collection along w/ full size bottle of their body serum which promises to moisturize and firm skin!  Can't wait to play around and mix and match with this beautiful collection of colours and shimmers!

Definitely worth checking out!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Get That Summer Glow With GloMinerals!

Awhile back a makeup artist friend of mine introduced me to GloMinerals when she was RAVING about their Mineral Powder Foundation and how great it was on set for shoots as well as for male grooming. Flash forward a couple of mths and that artist had started an online boutique as a distributor for Canada for Glo Minerals and I knew I had to finally see what she was talking about.

Of course once I started checking out the other products on the site I knew I was in trouble b/c there were A LOT of things that were grabbing my attention!

But first let me talk about the GloPressed Base Palette - it's an amazing palette w/ 21 shades and it's infused with Vitamins C, E, A and greentea extract this makeup acts as an anti-inflammatory to take down redness and heal the skin. It is also formulated for the most sensitive skin. There is no talc in glomineral makeup and all mineral derived colour. Formulated with pharmaceutical-grade minerals which means it is also triple milled and crushed to its finest capacity. I will be honest though my biggest complaint about the palette is it's so friggin' HEAVY!!!  As someone who is always trying to condense their kit I'd really love it if the packaging was a little more compact and light - it looks great but it weighs a ton!  Also, at this point you can't get refills if you go through a colour...I don't see that happening for awhile but still what am I going to do once I run out of the most popular colours?  Will I have to buy another palette?  Hopefully they will develop refills in the next bit so this doesn't happen b/c I really do like the product.

Even though the pressed foundation was what originally brought me to the site I'll be honest it's not even my fav product I purchased from GloMinerals!

My absolute fav product I purchased and something that has instantly garnered an immediate staple position in my kit is their Redness Relief Powder! This product is amazing and cuts out the redness in skin like you wouldn't believe!  I was amazed how much redness it took away w/ just a light dusting over the face!  As well a lot of my clients don't want a heavy foundation look or feel and this product is so light and natural so it's perfect for that!  A lot of times I was either using a green primer or mixing some green corrector into my concealer but you have to be so careful w/ that and still sometimes to get rid of all that red I had to use more product than I wanted.  This product is perfect for the person that really doesn't want to wear a lot of makeup or foundation but still wants to even out their skin won't even feel or look like they are wearing makeup!  It's also gentle enough to use after chemical peels or microderm treatments!

I'm also really loving the 24K Gold Dust - amazing loose gold highlighter - great for cheekbones, collarboneor anywhere you want to add a bit of highlight or shimmer.  Can also be mixed w/ lotion for an all over body glow or gloss for a golden lipgloss!  Plus it's not too sparkly or in your face just really helps create that beautiful golden glow that EVERYBODY is always trying to get!  I have literally been using this product not only on my clients but on myself none stop!

The final product I purchased was the Hydration Mist - instantly hydrates the skin and makes it feel refreshed and fresh again.  It can be used before makeup or throughout the day just as a skin refresher.  The size is perfect too b/c it's safe for airport travel and we all know how dry and dehydrating airplanes can be on our skin!  I also love to use it right at the end of a makeup application if I want to get rid of a bit of that powdery instantly helps make the skin look dewy and fresh!

So as you can see I'm a big fan of GloMinerals!  Definitely worth checking out if you're a makeup artist for your kit or just a regular makeup enthusiast and consumer!

Here's some pics of me getting ready for a night on the town...featuring 24 K Gold Dust, Redness Relief Powder & Hydration Mist!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Rashani - Extension Magic!

Back in April I had the pleasure of working w/ a beautiful bride named Rashani.  She was having a very small and simple wedding and the quickness she planned the whole affair in is actually quite amazing.  It's becoming more and more common w/ my city brides to get married at City Hall and then have a dinner or reception for close family and friends and that's exactly what Rashani was doing.

She didn't have a bridal party so it was just her on her wedding day.  At both the wedding day and the trial I also got to meet her very friendly husband to be...I don't actually get to meet the grooms that often so it's kind of nice sometimes when I do.

Just b/c Rashani was having a simple wedding doesn't mean she did want a bit of glamour and the full bridal treatment on her wedding day.  In fact compared to a lot of my brides she actually wanted a pretty dramatic look w/ a really nice grey/black smokey eye and a deep berry lip.  Because of her gorgeous deep golden brown skin tone she can carry off something w/ a bit more drama w/out it looking like "too much"..even during the day!

The hair was definitely the big change of the day!  Rashani had actually cut her VERY thick and gorgeous hair into a really sophisticated bob not too long before the wedding but for the wedding she decided she wanted something w/ a bit more length and curl...that's where the extensions came in!  I'll be honest Rashani naturally probably had some of the thickest hair I've ever seen...and I've seen a lot of hair!  I can't even imagine how heavy it must have been before she cut it!  It was gorgeous though.  For the wedding day I added in some clip in extensions and did a really pretty side ponytail and even I was impressed w/ how well the extensions blended into her hair...esp. given the thickness, coarseness and sharp cut of her regular hair.

Here's some pics of me in action creating her beautiful look!

 Rashani after the makeup and before the extensions!  This is just a snap shot w/ my phone.  As you can see her hair is quite blunt and not that long.

Curling the hair...and man was there A LOT of hair!

Now doing some of that final styling...starting to come together now!

Beautiful Curls! Me looking serious as usual lol!

Getting into her dress!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Nina & Jeremy - Country Love

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of working on a wonderful wedding w/ a wonderful bride named Nina.  I was actually contacted originally by her mother Hazel and after Nina had had a couple of unsatisfactory trials they went on the search for a new artist and found me!

This wedding was actually the first of 3 weddings I had on June 22/13 so to say I was busy that day would be an understatement but I'm so glad I was able to work w/ Nina and her friends and family b/c they were such a relaxed and friendly bunch...totally the type of bride I love to get.

I really do have to thank Hazel for being so on top of things and generous after the wedding and even sending me a preview picture from the wedding...can't wait to see the real pics b/c I know they are going to be gorgeous!  She also sent me this quick edit video the videographers - Captivate Cinema made during the day of the wedding and then showed at the reception.  The quality of this video esp. considering it was made literally the same day as the wedding is really really impressive to me.  I think it really captures the couple and their energy well and I love seeing my work on film!

The great thing about a video like this is you can't hide anything...if it looks good on film then it looks good in person and if it looks bad well you get the picture...

I did a really beautiful, lots of curl low updo on Nina and I love the addition of the flowers in her hair on the wedding day.  For her makeup I kept it really soft and pretty w/ a soft purple and grey smokey eye and a nice nudey pink lip.  I'm so happy the weather ended up working out for them and they could have their ceremony outside b/c I have to be honest I had my doubts that day as it was off and on rain but Hazel told me after that during the ceremony the sun actually broke through the clouds and it was gorgeous!

Thanks again to Ashley Readings for your amazing hair usual ;)

Look for me in action around the 1 min mark ;)

Friday, July 5, 2013

Summer 2013 Luxe Box

When the generous ppl at Loose Button contacted me to review one of their coveted Luxe Boxes I jumped at the opportunity!  I've known about Luxe Box for sometime but this is my first hands on experience w/ the neat concept.

For those of you not in the know let me explain the concept to you.  You sign up for a Luxe Box membership and every season you get a Luxe Box delivered to your door w/ 7-8 trial size (some are full size too) beauty and lifestyle picked by their beauty editors.  The membership comes w/ complimentary shipping plus exclusive access to private events, product launches and beauty tips and tutorials to keep up on the latest trends, styles and products!

I personally LOVE getting packages in the mail and I LOVE surprises so a membership like this would be a great little treat and way to try new products you might not be familiar w/ you never know what's going to be in the box so it much just have some gems that you would have never thought to try in the first place!

I also think this is a great gift idea for that hard to buy for person...I mean how can you go wrong w/ something like this!...Are you listening out there all you clueless boyfriends ;)

So now let's get to the good stuff...what exactly was in MY Summer 2013 Luxe Box!

 All My Goodies!

This is ColorSmash Hair Shadow.  Great for colouring the ends of your hair or adding some cool funky streaks.  I have to be honest when I first saw this I though "ugh" not b/c I didn't think it was cool but b/c I have tried these in the past but they NEVER showed up on my black hair...well guess what this one does!  It's super vibrant and super fun!  Definitely something I'm going to keep in mind for a shoot one day...or for myself if I'm feeling adventurous ;)

L'Occitane Hand Cream - This a great sample to keep in your purse for on the go moisturizing.  All the time I see girls whipping out hand moisturizer from their purses and this is the perfect size to fit into your cosmetic bag.  It's not greasy and absorbs nicely into the skin...just beware it does have a pretty strong rose fragrance so if that's not your thing you might not be a fan.

Lancome Genifique - This is a VERY popular anti-aging serum from the ppl at Lancome.  The full size bottle is a bit pricey so you know what this sample is a great way to check out the product to see if you like it enough to drop the dough.  The bottle may look small but a little goes a long way and although the serum is rich and hydrating it doesn't feel greasy on the skin.

Dot by Marc Jacobs Roller Ball - This perfume is already a regular staple in my beauty arsenal so I was actually really stoked to get the rollerball b/c I already know I love the scent and now I have the perfect compact way to take it w/ me for touch ups through out the day!

Essie Nail Polish in DJ Play That Song - What a HOT colour for Summer that IMO is bold enough to transition nicely into Fall!  I'm definitely taking this colour w/ me next time I go for my bi-weekly manicure ;)

Woman by Donna Karan - I'll be honest this is probably the only thing in the kit I wasn't totally stoked about.  It's not bad, it's just not my usual scent profile.  I go for things that are sweet, light, fruity or tropical and this is a little heavier for me.  But it is a nice scent...I actually think I'd like it better for Fall.  Plus the top isn't the most secure thing so be careful b/c I actually spilled it at first when I grabbed it to take it out of the box.

Tone Correcting Moisturizer w/ SPF from Olay - This is a colour correcting moisturizer and I definitely did see an improvement in the tone of my skin w/out any makeup after I put it on!  Plus it has SPF (always a MUST for me) and it doesn't feel greasy or oily on my skin.  Plus check out the size...definitely not a sample here ;)

Knotties Hair Ties & Handbands - Like many women out there I always have an unfashionable elastic around my wrist for those moments when I need to quickly tie my hair back.  Knotties are great b/c they act as a headband or elastic, don't crease the hair and look a little cuter around the wrist compared to the usual ugly elastic.

So overall I'd say that's a pretty good haul and a great variety of products to try out!  Even if there are one or two items you don't like in the box give them to a person's trash is another person's treasure after all ;)  So if you're interested in joining the Luxe Box Membership Program you can follow the link HERE to sign up! ENJOY!

Btw the last day to order your Summer Luxe Box is July 7/13 so if you want one you better get on it now!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

ClipHair Canada - A New Hair Extension Company In Town!

I use a lot of hair extensions - not only for myself but also for my bridal clients.  I mean very few of us are naturally blessed w/ the thick luscious hair we see on the celebs...I mean lets be real...they aren't even blessed w/ that hair lol!  Because of this I'm always on the look out for the best deal, selection and quality hair extensions.  That's why when ClipHair contacted me about doing a review for their hair extensions to celebrate their new launch into Canada I was more than willing to help out! I myself needed a new set of extensions so what better time to get some lol!

The company uses 100% remi human hair extensions...and if you've ever been curious what the term "remi" means when it comes to extensions here's the answer (taken straight from their FAQs).

This means that only the finest virgin (Untreated & not previously coloured) hair is used. The hair differs from normal \'Silky\' hair that’s available on sale, because it is hand picked & aligned so that every single strand runs in the same direction that it grows from the scalp. This ensures that the cuticle on each hair is running the same way (downwards), in order to keep the hair shiny, soft & truly tangle free. After picking & aligning, the hair goes through a gentle; but very complicated treatment process, to colour, straighten or wave the hair in the best way. ‘Silky\' hair has the cuticle removed; whereas \'Remi\' hair has the cuticle still intact. So although \'silky\' hair is still fabulous for extensions, \'Remi\' has a shine like no other & will not matt or tangle when worn for long periods.

The site has a huge selection of not only colour but also lengths and styles.  There are many straight colours as well as a variety of highlighted colour packs too!  Plus you can even buy just highlight packs if you're looking just to add some highlights to your hair w/out the commitment of actually dying your hair.  The lengths range from 10-26 inches which is pretty crazy.  I got the 20 inch extensions and my hair is LONG...I can only imagine the 26 in lol!  You can also get the extensions w/ wave or the standard straight depending on what you're looking for - being that it is human hair you can always curl or straighten the straight extensions depending on how you want to style them.  There is also a variety of styles from pre-made single layer weft extensions and double layer weft extensions, DIY weft and clips, clip-in bangs, pre-bonded extensions and one piece clip-in extensions...basically they have it all!

And if that wasn't enough the prices are AWESOME!  Esp. for the pre-made extensions!  Plus free shipping within Canada and no hassle returns!  They will even colour match your hair for you if you mail them a lock of your hair or  old extensions or send them a picture of your hair! Talk about customer service!

So now on to me.  My hair is LONG...very straight but not thick!  So I'm not getting extensions for length at this point I just want the volume!  I decided to go w/ the #1B double weft 20 inch pre-made extension set.  Even when I make extensions for my clients I do double weft that way you don't have to make as many pieces and you get more volume in the hair w/ less clips...which is esp important if the person doesn't have a lot of hair to start w/ b/c you never want the clips to show of course ;) It came w/ 8 pieces which was plenty but the pack had slightly different pieces then mentioned on the site - mine had 4 - 3 clip pieces, 2 - 2 clip pieces and 2 - 1 clip pieces.  When I make my own extensions I do the pieces a bit differently then they did here but these still worked out great for me.  The hair itself was a great match to my own in colour, texture and feel.  Very silky and soft and the clips are strong and securely fastened to the weft.  The hair was almost exactly the length of my own hair...maybe just adding an extra inch or so to the bottom so you definitely couldn't tell I was wearing extensions as it all blended flawlessly together.  

Here's some Before & After pics w/ the extensions!

See My Hair Is Super Long lol!...Also I should note I do not straighten my hair...what you see is what you get lol! (there is a crease b/c I had it in a ponytail earlier lol)

Look how much fuller the back is!  No gaps and it looks so natural and shiny! (I did straighten the top layer of my own hair just to get rid of the crease)

Couldn't let that luscious hair go to waste! Time to hit some patios w/ my BFF Sarah!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Summer Love - Dinithi & Steve

A few wks ago I had the pleasure to meet and work w/ a fabulous couple Dinithi & Steve on their engagement shoot.  This was actually an interesting booking b/c I didn't actually do Dinithi's wedding makeup and hair on her wedding day.  I was hired to go back for touch ups on hair for her wedding b/c her hair artist was very pregnant and couldn't do the return visit but that was I had 2 other weddings that day so to say it was a full day would be an understatement lol. Therefor getting hired to do makeup and hair for the engagement shoot was actually a bit of a surprise...but a pleasant one!

It was interesting b/c I got to meet the groom when they came to my studio to do the makeup and hair.  They were shooting right over at the UofT campus which is walking distance from my place and being that Steve is actually from England (they both live over there now but Dinithi is originally from Toronto hence the wedding here) it only made sense for him to come to my studio w/ Dinithi!

Although the weather could have been better they still ended up getting some great indoor and outdoor shots thanks to the skill of their awesome photographer Chris Luk.  Like a lot of my clients Dinithi is a super natural girl so I wanted to keep her look fresh and clean w/ just a bit extra pizazz.  For the hair again I kept it natural but I did blow it out, add a soft curl and a nice side bride to assure her bangs would stay out of her face during the shoot being that I wouldn't actually be on location to fix them constantly.

Thanks again Dinithi (and Chris) for sharing these pics w/ me!  They are great!  And congrats on the wedding you're a super cute couple!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Juicy Bamboo Cleansing Cloths

A few weeks back the lovely ppl at Kaia Naturals sent me their AMAZING Juicy Bamboo Cleansing Cloths to test and review and I have to say I'm MAJORLY a fan!

What's so great about these cleansing cloths you ask?  Well I'll tell you!

They are a Cleasner + Toner + Eye Makeup Remover All in One!

Let me tell this isn't the best thing to admit but it's Summer and I like to go out for a few drinks on a patio.  At the end of the night when I'm super tired I can't tell you how useful these were at quickly taking off my makeup (including my stubborn eye makeup) before I passed out lol!

Now I'll be honest I probably wouldn't use them all the time in lieu of my regular cleansing and toning routine but they are a great alternative when you're feeling lazy and tired or are on the go either traveling or want a quick refreshing clean up after the gym!

What's In Them:

8 Pure Plant-Based Essential Oils
Certified Organic Canadian Honey
Sunflower Oil
Contains Vitamins B12, C & E

What's Not!...I think this part is really important!

No Alcohol
No Synthetic Fragrance
No Parabens
No Sulfates

They come in travel packs and full size and they are definitely a product I think are worth checking out!  After checking out their website I'm also really interested in the Nature's Matte Finish Collection...I'll definitely have to look into that ;)