Resolutions

I’ve never been a particularly goal oriented person. I don’t have a five year plan. I don’t make lists and aggressively check off each item. I’m organized but it’s not on paper. I’ve always been a go-with-the-flow person and in some ways that’s a really good thing. I’ve had a lot of amazing experiences because of my willingness to go along with whatever life throws at me. On the other hand, I sometimes wonder if life would be better in some ways, such as my career and finances, if I were more into pursuing and achieving goals.

I don’t really do resolutions – I never stick to them and I don’t see the point of trying to set myself a goal that I know I won’t reach. I don’t need the guilt. All that said, here are some reflections on 2018 and some thoughts on 2019.

2018:

  1. 2018 was the year in which I finally felt that I got my anxiety under control. There were a couple things that contributed to this including getting a good, permanent job and learning that exercising is an excellent tool in managing anxiety. As a result of that I’m sleeping better than I ever have before.
  2. I started writing my blog again. It’s been amazing. I’d forgotten how wonderful the blogging community is. I’d also forgotten how much I love to write.
  3. I read so many books that I loved.
  4. I finally learned that it’s ok to end toxic relationships.
  5. I lost some weight by making some lifestyle changes and I’m feeling better about my body than I have in a long time. I also discovered the body positivity movement and was incredibly inspired by it. It’s helped me realize that losing weight and being slim is not the key to happiness. Being happy and healthy is what truly matters. I realize that may seem contradictory. It is. It’s a work in progress.
  6. I found the courage to talk online about some issues that I’ve always shied away from before, including aging and anxiety.

2019:

  1. I hope to become more involved in the body positivity community and continue trying to be kinder to myself.
  2. I want to approach my 40th birthday with grace and positive thoughts.
  3. I want one more year with my beloved 19 year old cat.

That’s it for me! Tell me, are you a resolutions person? I’m curious!

All Day Every Day

beautiful-birthday-blur-318379

Based on my blog content you might think that I start each day with a full face of war paint. The truth is, that as much as I love make up, my every day routine is quick and minimal.

Here’s my five minute daily look. I always start with a good base consisting of serum and moisturizer (these change based on the season and my mood). I also never skip primer. Right now I’m using Stila Say All Day 10-in-1 HD Beauty Balm. I got it on sale at Shopper’s Drug Mart. It’s ok, but not my favourite. It’s a bit hard to smooth over the skin and smells like paint thinner.

If I’m having a good skin day I use my favourite Maybelline Age Rewind Concealer (if you haven’t tried this you should – it’s brilliant) under my eyes, on the sides of nose, and dotted on my chin and forehead. I blend that in with a damp Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge, which I think is better than the Beauty Blender. Sacrilege, I know. If I’m having a bad skin day I also use a bit of foundation. At the moment I’m using The Ordinary’s Coverage Foundation. It’s really good, especially considering the low price.

I top off my base with a dusting of setting powder. I’m currently using Glossier’s Wowder, which I’ve talked about here. After powder I use a fluffy brush to sweep some bronzer over the hollows of my cheeks. I recently finished up my Physician’s Formula Butter Bronzer, which is very good. New in is Too Faced Milk Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer, which I will report back on (it smells like chocolate so I think we have a winner).

Next I sweep some blush over the apples of my cheeks. I use a different blush almost everyday. It’s one of my favourite products and I have quite the collection. Some of my favourites include Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes and Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes.

Next up is setting spray. I’m currently using MAC Prep and Prime Matte. I won’t repurchase this because the spray is not fine enough and I don’t think it keeps oil at bay any more than any other setting spray.

Lastly, I finish off with a coat or three of mascara (I’m currently using L’Oreal Telescopic) and some kind of lippy. I have pretty dry lips so I most often reach for a gloss or balm, especially in the colder months.

assorted-beauty-blur-457702.jpg

Photos via Pexels

And there you have it! A five minute face that’s natural, neutral, and work appropriate. Do you keep it simple like me or take the time to do a more elaborate make up look each day?

 

Fenty

I find myself reaching for lip gloss more and more as I age and especially in the cold months. My lips are so much drier than ever before and lipstick is just not a good look for me most days.

My most recent Sephora order included the new Fenty Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer in the shade Fenty Glow which is described as a shimmering rose nude. The claim is that the gloss delivers shine and all three shades – Fenty Glow, Diamond Milk, and FU$$Y – flatter all skin tones. Fenty Glow certainly works with my pale complexion and I think it would be gorgeous on deeper skin tones as well.

The gloss is very long lasting but not sticky. It is shimmery without chunky glitter. What really makes this gloss for me though is the scent, peach-vanilla. It is divine. This gloss is perfect as an every day staple and for throwing in your handbag for touch ups (not that you’ll need many) throughout the day. I cannot wait to try more Fenty Beauty products.

Have you tried anything from Fenty Beauty?

Telescopic

Today we’re going to be talking about mascara, or more specifically, my all time favourite mascara. Guess what! It’s from the drugstore and won’t cost you your first born! I think that mascara is definitely something you should not be spending gobs of money on, particularly because it’s only good for about six months.

L’Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black mascara can be purchased at any drugstore carrying L’Oreal products so it’s easy to find.

I love this mascara for several reasons. It is black as can be. It does not smudge. I find that a lot of non-waterproof mascaras tend to end up all over my face by the end of the day, but not this one. The tiny rubber brush makes it easy to grab each lash and makes for lots of length and definition. It’s also great for bottom lashes. One or two coats is more than enough to give you a fluttery lash look without going over the top. You can always add an extra coat in the evening for a more dramatic look. L’Oreal Telescopic is also never clumpy.

The slim brush means you won’t poke yourself in the eye, which is always a mascara hazard! Lastly, I don’t find this mascara difficult to remove at the end of the day. I just use my trusty Garnier micellar water and a cotton pad and the mascara comes off easily enough.

So tell me, what’s your favourite mascara of all time?

Do you Deciem?

Deciem. Do I dare?

If you ever look at the internet I imagine you’ve heard of Deciem and the recent controversy surrounding the erstwhile CEO. I went back and forth on whether or not to write this post but in the end obviously decided to write it. Lovers, this is not a blog about current events, this is a blog about products and so products is what I’m going to talk about.

Deciem exploded on to the market about two years ago. I first heard about it when one of my favourite Youtubers gave the brand a rave review. Deciem is a Toronto-based company composed of a number of brands including The Ordinary, Niod, Hylamide, The Chemistry Brand, etc. The concept is simple: skincare made with quality ingredients at a low price. The prices start at about $5.00, really. Genius. I’m no expert but I do know that there are only a few skincare ingredients that have actually been proven to do anything. Included in this list is hyaluronic acid which is a basically a magnet for moisture, and retinol which encourages cell turnover.

I’ve gone through two bottles of The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 and I love it. I rarely notice any immediate change in my skin after using a product, with the exception of this stuff. It does exactly what it’s supposed to do – plumps and moisturizes the skin. Brilliant. Mind you give your face a quick spritz before applying it kittens – the skin has to be wet for the acid to do its good work.

I also gave the retinol a go. The first time I used it I did not do it properly. I slathered it all over my face, including under my eyes. I paid the burny price. Retinol is to be used sparingly, avoiding the eye area. After the initial mishap I used the rest of the product successfully. I cannot honestly tell you that I noticed a huge change in my skin but I think if you are concerned about the signs of aging this is a good one to try.

I also used two tubes of Hand Chemistry from The Chemistry Brand. Again, I can’t really speak to any anti-aging benefits but I can tell you that I love this stuff. The scent is fruity but not strong at all and it just works. My hands feel nice and hydrated after using it which, after-all, is the whole point right?

I’ve also been using The Ordinary Coverage Foundation for the past year. It’s good. It has great coverage but it’s not heavy on the skin. It lasts well too. Nothing lasts all day on my face but I get a good few hours out of this foundation.

Have you tried any of Deciem’s products?

On scent

I love fragrance. I always have. I’m always burning scented candles at home, I love picking out a new body wash, and I have a small but well curated collection of perfumes that I love to wear.

My favourite of the moment is something rather special that I treated myself to when Mr. P&P and I spent a few days in Calgary last spring. I’m talking about Jo Malone London Blackberry & Bay.

Blackberry & Bay is fruity but tart. Juicy and green at the same time. The notes are blackberry, grapefruit, florals, vetiver, cedarwood, and bay leaves. The Jo Malone website describes it thusly:

This fragrance evokes childhood memories of blackberry picking—a burst of deep, tart blackberry juice blends with the freshness of just-gathered bay and brambly woods for a vibrant and verdant impression.

They’ve nailed it. It’s fresh and great for summer but I think it works for all seasons. It was a spendy little purchase but I cherish it and look forward to wearing it.

What’s your scent of the moment?

Tips and Tricks for Shopping eBay

I like to shop. I live in the Yukon. These two things are not particularly compatible. Online shopping is the best thing to ever happen to me and I’ve been practicing for about 15 years. Lucky for you because I’m here to share some of the best tips of the trade!

Today I want to focus on eBay because it is an absolute goldmine. It’s a great way to create a more sustainable and responsible closet, find pieces that no one else will be wearing, and score pieces from spendy brands for a fraction of the original retail price. It’s also a great resource if you are into vintage.

So, without further blah, blah, blah, here are my top tips for scoring a great deal on eBay!

  1. Know your size. This means measurements! Shoulder to shoulder, armpit to armpit, chest, waist, hips, inseam, and rise! This is especially important when looking for vintage pieces because vintage sizing is smaller than modern sizing.
  2. Include as much detail as you can in your search. What size are you looking for? Colour, material, style, decade, fit, location, free shipping, and price, to name just a few, are all options you can narrow your search by.
  3. Check seller feedback. This is important. I only order from sellers who have 95% or higher positive feedback. I would also recommend not buying from sellers who have only sold a few items, though if they have an item you’re dying for listed then it might be worth the risk.
  4. Check the shipping costs. If, like me, you live in a remote area this is particularly important. $20 for a cashmere sweater is a bargain but not if the shipping costs $40. I tend to confine my buying to North America for this same reason. Also make sure to check that the buyer ships to your area.
  5. Shop on www.ebay.com, not www.ebay.ca. All the Canadian items for sale will still come up but, because it is the US site, the selection is better.
  6. Read the seller’s return policy. You don’t want to get stuck with something that doesn’t fit or is damaged. Make sure the seller will pay the return shipping costs, if not you lose out on that money.
  7. Try searching for misspellings. Not everybody is great at the whole written word thing. Try Madwell instead of Madewell, Parda instead of Prada, Ralph Laren instead of Ralph Lauren, the list goes on. With some luck you might just find yourself a gem and be the only bidder! Here’s a sweater that I’ve currently got my eye on and I can bid at my leisure because other buys will miss it!
  8. Save your searches. Once you have narrowed all of your parameters down to the exact item you’re looking for (for example, Gucci brown horse-bit vintage loafers size 7.5) you can save the search. You’ll receive email alerts when someone posts something that matches your search and you won’t have to reset all your item specifics when you go to do your search again.
  9. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you want more photos (for example, I often ask for a photo of someone wearing the item if one isn’t already posted), need more information on the sizing, fabric, any flaws, etc. ask. If the buyer isn’t willing to answer your questions then move on to the next seller. A good seller will want you to be totally happy with your purchase and will do as much as they can to ensure that happens.
  10. If you’re looking for something specific don’t get discouraged if you don’t find it the first time around. People all over the world post items everyday so chances are good that if you keep searching you’ll eventually track down what you’re looking for!

And that’s it! As with anything, with practice you’ll get better so get out there and get shopping friends!

xo,

Poutine