Julep March Maven Box Review

If you’ve never shopped on Julep.com before you can buy all kinds of nail polish and accessories from the Seattle based company but what really makes it different are the monthly Maven boxes. For $19.99 a month including shipping you get to choose from different boxes (Bombshell, Boho Glam, etc..) which gives you a couple nail polishes and usually some kind of accessory whether it’s a top coat, a new makeup product or some other useful tool. None of the colour combinations in the March boxes really caught my interest so I decided to go with the March Core Classics box.
Included in the Core Classics box was an Oxygen Nail Treatment (which is used to make your nails healthier and leave a slight colour), a Freedom Polymer topcoat (supposed to leave your nails with a gel like finish), a Nail Cleanup tool and a rock candy stick. It was the Nail Cleanup tool that made me choose this box since I’m used to using my thumbnails to clean up my messes with nail polish. It’s a good idea but I think it’s going to take some practice for me to get used to it. Especially when using my left hand.

The Oxygen Nail Treatment probably won’t get a ton of use from me since I change the colour of my nails pretty frequently but it’ll be nice to give them a break once in a while. The Freedom Polymer is something I’ve been using off and on. I can’t commit to a gel nail colour so this is a nice switch and it does help keep my polish from chipping for a couple days.

Hopefully next month’s colours interest me a little more.

If you want to try Julep’s Maven boxes click here and use the code FREEBOX for your first box free!

Philosophy Makes Us Loveswept

philosophy loveswept

To promote their new loveswept fragrance, philosophy is celebrating true love with real life couples.

Becoming loveswept is the new campaign from philosophy with interview with real life couples who are in love from the couples who has been married for 50 years to cute young newlyweds to same sex partners. In the videos they talk about how they met, their best relationship advice, their most romantic moments and more. My heart is growing just watching them. The couples they found are so cute. I hope I am half that cute with my boyfriend.

They will be posting a new video every week with more romantic tidbits from the philosophy couples.

As an added bonus, if you head to Sephora now, you can get a deluxe sized sample of loveswept free! I’ll meet you there!

Watch the first becoming loveswept video here:

Most Wanted: Hand Creams

My skin is pretty dry but winter in Toronto this year has pretty much killed it. Luckily I’ve found a few hand creams that have saved my skin.

L’Occitane Dry Skin Hand Cream
This is my go to hand cream. I must have 5 different scents lying around but the original Dry Skin Hand Cream is my favourite. It’s non greasy, absorbs super fast and lasts for a really long time.

Lush Charity Pot
I keep a small tub of this on my desk. I love the scent, it’s absorbs relatively quickly and I love that the proceeds of every sale go to different charities.

Soap And Glory Hand Food
soapandgloryhandfoodThis is what I keep in my purse. It goes on really smoothly and it has a pretty girly fragrance that I love.

There are definitely other hand creams I use but these are my most wanted

Hair Envy For Diane Kruger’s Moroccanoil Braids

2014 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Graydon Carter

I have always wanted to put my hair in braids, but have never been able to master the art. I envy girls who casually walk around with cute fishtails braids like its nothing. Then I see Diane Kruger’s hair at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party and practically die of envy.

2014 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Graydon Carter - Arrivals

Diane Kruger is effortlessly gorgeous with amazing style and my teenage dream man Joshua Jaskson as her boyfriend. This braided hairstyle puts her on the top of my hot list. Luckily, I have a step by step from Moroccanoil’s stylist Kylee Heath, who did Diane Kruger’s hair. If you have talented hands, maybe you can stop by my house to do my hair by following her step-by-step:

“This style is very edgy and modern, so to set the foundation, I began by drawing a dead-straight part down the center of Diane’s damp hair. Then, I applied Moroccanoil Volumizing Mousse and Moroccanoil Root Boost from root to mid-shaft and Moroccanoil Treatment Light to her ends.  These all worked together to add body, hold and shine to the hair.

‘Next, I blew the hair out using Moroccanoil’s 35mm Boar Bristle Round Brush, paying close attention to keeping the roots very smooth. Once the hair was fully dry, I sectioned off the bangs as well as a 1/2” strip from each ear, downwards, all the way to the nape of the neck. I secured this section with an elastic at the center back nape and wove it into a single braid.

‘Keeping the bangs sectioned off, I misted the main section of the hair with Moroccanoil Luminous Hairspray and brushed it smooth in a backward direction.

‘Beginning at the center of the head working outward, I wove the remaining hair into 15 small braids—not making them all the same size. Once all the hair was in braids, I wrapped two fine braids from left-to-right and then right- to-left to create a finely braided headband.

‘Leaving out one braid in the center, one-by-one I looped the remaining braids under and tucked them into the base of the braided section—pinning along the way. This created the illusion of a large “chignon”.

‘The last braid was wrapped horizontally across the top of the chignon to finish it off.

‘To finish the style, I left the bangs soft and swept them backwards toward the braids and secured. Mist the hair with Moroccanoil Luminous Hairspray to add shine and long-lasting hold.”

Photos: Jon Kopaloff at FilmMagic and Anthony Harvey at Getty Images

Sneak Peek: Ipsy March 2014

Ipsy is probably my favourite subscription box. It’s not only one of the few American boxes that ships to Canada but for under $20 a month you get a new makeup bag filled with around 5 makeup and beauty products both full sized and deluxe samples. Each month has a theme and this month seems to be based around travel.

Here are the sneak peek to what Ipsy members could be getting in their glam bags this month.

Bare Escentuals’ Double Trouble Mini Marvelous Moxie Lipstick in Make Your Move or Smooth Talker

NYX Love in Rio trio
Be a Bombshell palette in Bora Bora

Nicole by OPI Nail Polish
Missha BB Cream
Chella Pencil

Pacifica Indian Coconut Nectar Body Butter
Klorane Soothing Eye Patches
Pixi Beauty Primer
Vita Liberata Self Tan
The bag
If you’re interested in trying Ipsy, here’s our referral code: http://www.ipsy.com/r/1xn0

Key West Aloe Review

key west aloe

On a recent trip to Key West, I made a stop in a little beauty shop and discovered one of my new favourite skincare lines, Key West Aloe. This small unassuming company has been dedicated to skincare since the 1970’s.

The first thing that grabbed my attention was that they use skin soothing aloe vera in all of their products. Like most people, I had used aloe vera on sunburns before but never seen it as an ingredient in other products. I suddenly wondered why not? If it soothed my sunburn and made my skin soft, why wouldn’t it work on regular skin?

Their moisturizing lotion was just the right consistency and the aloe vera was softening my skin before my eyes. I couldn’t decide which scent to buy between their coconut, mango or key lime. Fortunately they have these great little gift sets with all of the moisturizers.

While I was there I snagged a few samples of their other aloe vera skincare products including their after sun, shower gels and eye creams. On one hand I am ecstatic to report that all of their products give you the same smoothing results and have great tropical scents. I am sad to say though that now I will need to head back down to Key West to get more! Actually maybe that’s not such a bad thing.

Julep The Party’s Over Glitter Nail Polish Removal Kit Review

Everyone who wears glitter nail polish knows how difficult it is to remove. I’m not a huge fan of glitter but the few times I’ve worn it, I barely had the patience to deal with it. There are a couple different methods that people swear by online involving foil but when I saw Julep’s Party’s Over kit I decided to give it a try.

The kit comes with 8 regular size nail caps, 2 for your thumbs and 5 packets of 10 mini nail polish remover pads. I was pretty skeptical that it would actually get the glitter off but I went ahead and put a pad and cap on each nail (which gets interesting when one hand is done and you go to do the other) and waited 3 minutes.

After I pulled them all off it looked like I still had glitter stuck to my nails but I realized they were loose enough that I could pull the glitter pieces off with my nail or scrub for a bit with the used pads. My nails weren’t dried out thanks to the aloe infused in the pads.

Even though it’s time consuming and kind of awkward, it’s nice to know there’s a relatively easy way to get glitter polish off.


Coming Soon: Smashbox With Santigold – The Santigolden Age

The newest collaboration between a musician and makeup seems to be The Santigolden Age, a new collection from Smashbox with musician/artist Santigold.

The Santigolden Age collection will include an eye shadow collage, Be Legendary lipgloss, Double Ended Limitless Eye Liner, nail polish art strips and for the first time a Be Legendary lipstick ring, which I personally can’t wait to check out. The collection will be available April 1, 2014.

Lush Cosmetics Most Wanted: Alyssa’s Picks

I’ve been using Lush products since I was in high school, so over 10 years later I’ve pretty much tried everything they make. These are my absolute favourite, can’t live without products from Lush.

Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner
I was have really dry skin so I was skeptical of using an in shower body lotion but once you rinse this off in the shower you really don’t need any other kind of moisturizer. This has seriously saved my skin during the winter. The rose scent is kind of amazing as well.

Rock Star Soap
It smells like vanilla candy and it’s really creamy and moisturizing for hand soap. I’ve been using this for so many years I’ve lost count.

Celestial Moisturizer

My face is pretty much a crazy combination of oily and dry depending on the day. This is the first moisturizer I’ve found that balances it out and clears up the dry patches without leaving me greasy.

Happy Happy Joy Joy

I have fine, wavy, frizzy hair and this conditioner balances it out without leaving it too weighed down. You only need a little, so the smallest bottle lasts a long time. And it makes you want to smell your hair constantly.

Sea Spray

I love most sea salt hair products but this one is my favourite. Only a couple spritzes and it calms your hair into really nice waves and doesn’t leave them crunchy.

I love most sea salt hair products but this one is my favourite. Only a couple spritzes and it calms your hair into really nice waves and doesn’t leave them crunchy.

Budget Beauty: Pari Beauty

pari beauty facebook

While I love makeup, I admittedly sometimes have a hard time stomaching the high price tags that come along with the habit of frequenting the beauty aisles. I’m sure that many women sacrifice quality in favour of affordability. Pari Beauty makes it so you don’t have to sacrifice anymore.

Pari Beauty is quality without high price tags. Pari Beauty foundation is just $24, mascara is $15 and lip gloss is $14.

You might think I am joking when I saw that price tag doesn’t determine quality, but it’s true.

The lip gloss is probably the most impressive product I tried in the line. The big, bright, bold colours pop on your lips. They are statement making shades. The lip gloss stays on bright and glossy and doesn’t smudge. The finish when I first applied it seemed too good to be true. When the gloss didn’t come off during my morning coffee, I have to say, I was amazed.

The concealer and face powder are equally as impressive. The concealer is professional grade in my opinion. It is thick and you have to have a light hand with it, but a little is all you need.

Perusing their website, they have so many more products I am interested in trying to see if this quality for less ideal is continued through the entire Pari Beauty line.