Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5

Hyaluronic acid is an excellent skincare ingredient. This miracle humectant helps keep the skin stay plumed and hydrated. It does this by holding 1000 times its weight in water. The best part is since hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring ingredient everyone can seek benefit from this wonder. At one point hyaluronic acid was cutting edge, however these days this ingredient is just old news…

I say that with the upmost respect, because it’s one of my favourite skin care ingredients. I love it! My skin loves it! Where am I going with this? What I’m trying to say is I adore this ingredient, but since it’s old technology I would never spurge on a serum that just featured hyaluronic acid alone. The crazy thing is some product’s that feature hyaluronic acid sell for well over the $100.00 mark. So for those about to spurge and want to save look no further then The Ordinary. 

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 gives you 3 different forums of hylauronic acid, each at three different molecular weights. Meaning this is going to give multi-depth hydration and really plump up your skin. The formula also features vitamin B5, which is an excellent moisturizer too. Now I will say this formula isn’t as refined as some hyaluronic acid skin care I’ve tried. You won’t get that beautiful slip, luscious scent or pretty packaging, but what you are getting is a product that works just as good. On my dehydrated, dry skin I noticed an almost immediate difference. Less then a latte at Starbucks you need to give this $6.80 skincare treat a try.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Ordinary’s Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2% Review

Back in January, I declared my love for Sunday Riley’s Good Gene’s. This lactic acid treatment left my skin luminous, healthy and even toned (review here). The only set back with this miracle product was that it was $175.00. So despite Good Gene’s being effective I had my ears open for any lactic acid treatment. Coming in at $6.70, literally less than 26 times the price of Good Gene’s I decided to give The Ordinary’s Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2% a try. 

Like any good blogger I need to be fully transparent. When comparing Good Gene’s to The Ordinary’s Lactic Acid 10% it’s important to keep in mind you’re getting a lot of things that The Ordinary doesn’t contain. For example Good Gene’s contains prickly pear extract, blue agave extract, yeast, lemongrass oil and Montana flower extract. All these extracts and fermentations add to the price, thus making it a luxury skin care product. With The Ordinary you’re not getting all the bells and whistles, but what you are getting is a brilliant, respectable lactic acid treatment. 

Let’s start from the beginning Lactic acid is a alpha hydroxy acid (AHA). Basically this skin care ingredent eats away at dead skin cells leaving you with luminious lookin skin. In addition lactic acid also helps stimulate collegen production which helps plump up the skin. Despite the fact that AHA’s sounding like a horror movie they are relivitly gentle. In fact most skin types can seek some sort of benefit from lactic acid. 

The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% has the pH of 3.8 making it gentle, but an aggressive chemical exfoliator. Personally, in comparison to Good Gene’s pH of 2.6 The Ordinary has an undoubtly more gentle composition. This is the kind of acid that I can use everday without redness or irrtation. However should you feel like tiptoeing your way into the world of chemical exfoliators they make a 5% lactic acid. Which I haven’t tried because I want all of the exfoliation. Another reason why you shouldn’t be scarred of this exfoliator is the addition of addition of Pepperberry, which helps reduce irritation. At mentioned before I did not have the slightest irritation… so fear not. 

After 4 weeks of (almost) everyday use I have to say I love this stuff. My skin is luminous, even toned and hydrated. Yes, hydrated because they also put hyaluronic acid in the formula just to give your skin some extra love. So if you were thinking about buying Good Gene’s and you wanted to spurge I say do it. However if you’re looking for similar results, but at a fraction of the cost you need to stop what you’re doing and get some The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2% right now.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

How To Make The Perfect Easter Basket

Tis the season of Cadbury Mini Eggs and chocolate buttons. It’s also the season of making egg bread, which I have failed making this year, but I digress. Ever since having my daughter Everleigh I feel like it’s been my parental duty to make every holiday extra special for her. So even though she’s 1, I thought why not make an Easter basket for the little one? Fill it up with age appropriate things for her and a little chocolate for us. So ladies and gent’s here are my must haves for creating a perfect Easter basket. 

The basket
I got Everleigh’s basket and the liner from Pottery Barn Kids. What I like about this basket is that the liners can be easily switched out. Meaning if one year she’s into unicorns and purple stars another year I don’t have to buy a whole new Easter basket. The build quality of the basket is exceptional and you can find great deals at Pottery Barn Kids once Easter is done. 

The Treat’s 
Since our little one is only 1 the majority of the chocolate in the basket is for us . However it wouldn’t be an Easter basket without a mini eggs and a kinder surprise. If your family is more on the health conscious side of things you can always replace chocolate for healthier alternatives, one of my favourite healthy treats are Oatmeal Banana cookies (they are vegan, gluten and sugar free recipe here

The Toys
Some families don’t do an Easter toy, however I grew up getting a little Easter “treat” as my mom would call it. Not wanting to overdo things I bought three little Easter toys for Everleigh. All very affordable the toys I got for Everleigh are a plush Nici Wonderland doll (here and on sale), the other is a set of maracas (found for around the $5.00 mark at Winners) and finally a bunny plush toy (no idea where I got this but it was super inexpensive). From one shopper to another I highly suggest purchasing a month or so before Easter. I find there are excellent deals out there just after Valentine’s Day. 

The Extra’s 
Depending on your child’s age you might want to throw in some Easter basket extras. Some of my favourites are colouring books, bath bombs, stickers, puzzles, pj’s, books or stationary. Growing up my mom would often add a cute pair of spring themed socks or cute pink lip gloss as an Easter basket extra. 

Like with all holidays the most important thing when purchasing any gift is keep your eyes open. Now I seriously can’t wait to crack open in to these cookies and cream eggs. Have an excellent week everyone, and should you have any Easter-y ideas feel free to leave me a comment below or on my social media. 

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Darphin Aromatic Cleansing Balm Review

I’m going to start this review with a confession, well multiple confessions. 
1.I have been purchasing way too much skin care lately. I say that like its problem, but I live for this! 
2. I have been on the search for a thick cleansing balm. 
3. I love affordable skincare, but the last truth is I’ve been craving something luxe. Sure there are many affordable cleansing balm out there, but I desire decadence (within reason). 
Admired by many and respected in the beauty community I ended up with Darphin’s Aromatic Cleansing Balm and 3 weeks of thoroughly testing here are my thoughts.

Darphin was founded on the principal of perfection. There products smell divine, the ingredient list not only features the best components but it’s actually maliciously thought out too. Why does there packaging fit perfectly in the palm of your hand? It’s rounded and weighted. Why does there body range smell heavenly? There roses are painstakingly picked at dawn to ensue you are getting the scent of the unfolding flower… that kind of perfection. It’s actually one of the only companies that openly admits they don’t care how much their product costs, because they refuse to cut back on quality. So when I craved a fancy cleansing balm, Darphin was my number one choice. 

Despite the beautiful weighted glass and the lovely scent, for me this cleansing balm is all about the ingredients. This cleansing balm contains an hydrogenated polydecene base. This high end man made oil is commonly used as a replacement to mineral oil, it’s perfect for sensitive skin and oily too. While some swear in its antiaging benefits, I personally love the slip this gives. Meaning you can really work this cleansing balm into your skin. The good people at Darphin have also added nourishing jojoba oil and hydrating macadamia seed oil, both excellent lightweight oils perfect for most skin types. 

My favourite feature is the addition of rosewood oil. This oil is really a miracle product, because it balances all skin types, helps support healthy regeneration of cells and helps maintain elasticity to the skin. Also, on the aromatherapy side of things rosewood has anxiety, depression fighting qualities. Some also report that rosewood works as an aphrodisiac … what I’m saying is hubby stay away from my Darphin. 

This also has soothing, pure vanilla extract which makes this cleansing balm smell absolutely heavenly. In addition vanilla is also an anti-oxidant and yes, it too can be used by every skin type. My only knock on this product is that the website doesn’t feature a complete ingredient list, because if I was Darphin I would be plastering it everywhere. With that being said I called Darphin’s customer service and they emailed me one in less than 5 minutes time.

Despite the minor hiccup in ingredients, I have to say I love Darphin’s Aromatic Cleansing Balm. Its rich, luxurious, spreads easily over the skin, removes makeup and smells like a fancy spa. The formula is paraben free and features some excellent ingredients. It’s the perfect product for a lavish spa at home experience and it can be used by every skin type. From the weighted bottle to the heavenly scent if your craving a skin care treat look no further than the Darphin Aromatic Cleansing Balm.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

March Favourites

What a month! Professionally I have been extremely busy. Not only has my 9-5 been extremely challenging but over the past couple of weeks I was offered a new job. Now, I love starting new things … Yes, I’m one of those rare breeds that loves to meet new people and feel inspired when I start new tasks. I am also excited that this job will require me to dress like an adult! Which means so long yoga pants (I’m going to miss you) and hello power lipsticks. 
I’m way off topic here, but what I’m getting to is: 
1. I can’t wait till next month’s favourites 
2. I have been busy, so expect easy-peasy favourites 
3. I’m still having a full on obsession with The Ordinary ( I believe I now own over 8 products from the range) 
Let’s get started!

The Ordinary Buffet
This serum contains venom, peptides that trick the skin… basically what I’m saying is there are a lot of high tech things in this serum and you need to go visit my review now (here). The glory is in the name, because this literally is a buffet for the skin. Buffet has anti-aging properties, hydrating properties and just about everything in-between. The best part is your getting some amazing technology but for a fraction of a price. If you wanted to try something from The Ordinary I would say Buffet is an excellent place to start. 

The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2%
I love Sunday Rileys Good Genes. It makes my skin luminous, even toned and just generally glow-y. However at $135 a pop Good Genes is an expensive. I’ve said this before and I stand by it… skincare is an investment! However, should I be able to save I am all for it. The Ordinary Lactic Acid is an excellent product that has similar effects as Good Gene’s and one that I plan on reviewing sometime real soon. 

Darphin Aromatic Cleansing Balm 
Aromatic Cleansing blam is a thick and luxurious. It removes makeup along with SPF, but it’s super gentle at the same time. I’ve had this product for just over two weeks now and I can thoroughly say I’ve look forward to using it each and every day. A fancy cleansing balm that definitely needs a whole review of its own, expect to a whole post sometime about this sometime soon. 
If you haven’t noticed I’ve been buying a lot of skincare as of late! 

Jean Paul Gaultier Classique
Vanilla, rose and rum make this perfume warm and cozy. While most fragrances I try these days are loud and sickly sweet Classique is soft and slightly powder like. If you needed an everyday, life friendly, classic perfume I can’t recommend this Jean Paul Gaultier master piece enough (review here)

Acure Organics Ultra Hydrating Body Lotion in Unscented 
If a body butter and body lotion had a baby it would be Acure’s Hydrating Body Lotion. This thick body cream is intensely moisturizing, yet is absorbs into the skin almost instantly. From using this on the baby to my partner reaching for the bottle, an Unscented lotion really never appealed to me before however having one on hand has proved itself super useful. Plus I really like that this doesn’t interfere with my fragrance! Like all of Acure’s product this ingredient list is filled with goodness, I can’t recommend the Ultra Hydrating Body Lotion enough! 

Skincare heavy I know! But what can I say when I’m busy it all comes down to skin. With that being said I can’t wait to see what next month brings. What have you been loving as of late leave me a comment below or on my social. Like always thank for reading and I can’t wait for all the reviews I have in store for you .

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Jean Paul Gaultier Classique Review

I have always loved the world of beauty. In fact one of my first jobs ever was working as a perfume demo at a local department store. Yes I was one of those ladies! but I have to say despite the majority of shoppers finding us perfume demonstrators annoying I loved it. Demo-ing allowed me to talk to people about all things beauty, play with different luxury makeup and to discover the world fancy fragrances. Now I’m not one to knock a Brittany perfume, but while my friends were wearing Fantasy my access to fine fragrances allowed me to dabble in Chanel, Dior and Herm├Ęs. One of my favourites of the time was Classique by Jean Paul Gaultier and between you and I it still holds its own today and here’s why… 

The juice. Classique is a what I would call a traditional spicy oriental. While it’s not as spicy as Dior’s Addict or Chanel’s Coco it has that subtle warmness kind of like a cashmere sweater on a cool spring day. The notes also include warm vanilla, a subtle dash of rum and a touch of rose. The overall effect is smooth, slightly powdery with a slight touch floral. It’s a the kind of fragrance that’s a feels like a comforting hug, from a well-groomed lady. It’s classy and as it wears the vanilla, and amber make this one hell of an intoxicating fragrance. 

I wish I could sit here and say that it was the scent that attracted to me Classique, but the truth is it’s all about the bottle. I think over the years this women silhouette bottle has been replicated time and time again. However between you and I it’s never looked quite as good as the original Classique. While I’m not one to purchase any fragrance based on bottle shape I have to say I thoroughly enjoy displaying this on my dressing table. 

Classique is warm, easy to wear and inviting. While it might not be as popular as Chanel No 5 or Dior’s J’adore, Classique holds its own. It’s both loveable and kind to its wearer and the bottle is a standout. If you’re looking for a new fragrance put that bottle of celebrity fragrance down and try Jean Paul Classique, I can't recommend this stuff enough. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Let’s Hit the Bottle… With Philips Avent!

With so many baby bottle options out there, finding the right one for your little one can be a daunting task. When I first had Everleigh I was all into a ‘hippy’, ‘earthy’, ‘natural’ lifestyle. Now I’m not knocking any lifestyle choices out there, but I use these terms very loosely on myself because this organic, hippy way of living only lasted 3 months (and I’m being generous). It basically ended when my cravings for donuts became a full-fledged addiction and when my exclusively breastfeeding ways became ‘I need sleep, someone give her a bottle’. 

Keeping up with the organic mama (but paired down) theme we opted to use glass bottles. It didn’t take us long to realize this option wasn’t the best. The bottles were heavy, breakable and as Everleigh learnt how to toss them off her high chair, these heavy bottles became a safety risk for our dog, Lola. The next bottle we opted for was plastic, lightweight and less of a hazard for the pets in our house. However the pitfall to this popular baby bottle was that it had about a million parts. Which means there are a million parts to wash and to inevitably lose. Should you want to skip out on the bottles inner workings, the bottle leaks and by leaks I mean they empty. Trust me I have a sour smelling diaper bag to prove it. 

Stinky, discouraged and now an owner of terrified dog my bottle experiences where nothing short of a catastrophe. What I was craving was a baby bottle that was easy to wash and toss friendly. Something that loosely resembled a breast, and something easy for Everleigh to hold. Just a simple, easy to use baby bottle… 

My bottle journey lead me to Philips Avent Natural bottle and between you and I haven’t looked back since. Firstly these bottles are easy to wash, and uncomplicated to put together. The bottle itself only contains 3 parts (not including the lid) and they can be easy washed by a regular kitchen sponge. You could use a bottle cleaner should you be feeling fancy… I truthfully never feel this classy. Next up, I love that the Avent nipples are interchangeable. Meaning should I want to make Everleigh’s sippy cup a bottle in a pinch I can do so. For trips and vacations packing an extra nipple as oppose to a whole bottle can really save room in your carry on. 

Breastfeeding moms also will be happy to know that this bottle really imitates the natural contours of a boob… I can’t believe I just said that! However as my own breastfeeding journey comes to an end it’s nice to see Everleigh take comfort in her bottle through this transition. Furthermore this bottle doesn’t leak, has an anti colic valve, it's easy for baby to hold and it’s BPA free. 

Whole heartily we have loved this bottle, in fact my only regret is not using this bottle sooner. If you’re someone who’s having a disaster bottle situation I can’t recommend the Philips Avent Natural bottle enough. Likewise if you are pregnant or know someone who’s pregnant this is a gift that will save a lot of guesswork. Definitely on the top of my Mama must haves is the Philips Avent Natural Bottle.
*This blog post is sponsored by Philips Avent and PTPA. All opinions on my blog are entirely my own. Our family has throughly enjoyed these bottles, and would recommend them for any parent out there!

Philips Avent Bottles Giveaway - March/April 2017