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Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

~ Hair Style Ideas for Hot Summer Days ~

 

With the weather getting hotter and stickier by the day, I’ve been searching for new ways to get my long hair off my neck and shoulders. I’m not very talented when it comes to hairstyling, so I needed to find tutorials that were informative and easy to follow. Unsurprisingly, I began my search on Pinterest, which led me to The Small Things Blog – a hair, style, and beauty blog run by a former independent private hair studio owner, Kate (for privacy reasons, her last name doesn’t appear on any of her social media profiles). The hair tutorials page is divided into four sections —styling, casual, fancy, and braided, allowing you to quickly access an occasion-appropriate style and tutorial. (The fancy section is wonderful for wedding season ;) lots of quick, easy styles that look like they were done by a pro). Go check it out for yourself – there’s a tutorial for all hair lengths and types!

lauren the intern _dark textAs written by Lauren Wilson

 

 

 

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Lauren’s Top 7 Summer Beauty Essentials

Summer Essentials

1. Makeup Setting Spray – Setting spray is a must for the hot summer months if you want your make up to stay in place all day and not melt off your face (which I’m assuming everyone does). My favourites are Model In A Bottle (original formula) and Urban Decay’s ‘All Nighter.’ I find the Urban Decay spray to be a bit more moisturizing and not as strong hold as Model In A Bottle, so I use All Nighter as my ‘everyday’ setting spray and reserve Model In A Bottle for special occassions.

2. Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration After Sun Ultra Hydrating Lotion - I use this every single day, not just after I’ve been out in the sun. The ultra hydrating formula of this lotion is wonderful for extending the wear of my sunless tan! Though a very rich lotion, it absorbs quite quickly, leaving behind nothing but soft, supple skin and a delicious coconut papaya scent.

3. L’Oreal Telescopic Shocking Extensions Waterproof Mascara – I spend a large part of the summer swimming, so waterproof mascara is a must. L’Oreal Telesopic Shocking Extensions’ is my absolute favourite waterproof mascara it’s a waterproof formula that’s actually waterproof. You can swim with this stuff on then rub your eyes when you come out of the water and it won’t move a bit. An added bonus: waterproof mascara will hold your lash curl much better than non-waterproof formulas.

4. Pur CC Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 40 – Moisturize, brighten, prime, conceal, and protect in one step! With multitasking products like this, you can get ready for a daytime outting in no time flat. There’s no excuse to not protect your face from harsh UV rays (i.e. skin cancer and premature aging) when you have this CC cream on hand. Check out my full review of this product here.

5. Kett Cosmetics Transluscent Pressed Powder – It’s hot and humid out, everyone (even dry-skinned people like myself) is greasier and sweatier than usual. This transluscent pressed powder from Kett is fantastic for taking on-the-go to touch up your T-zone throughout the day, as the packaging is mess-free and portable. As a truly transluscent powder, this works to absorb oil and mattify the face without adding any colour or build up that will cause cakiness.

6. St. Tropez Self Tan Dark Bronzing Mousse – What’s summer without a tan? This bronzing mousse from St. Tropez has been my holy grail sunless tanner for years now. It doesn’t have an overpowering smell, there’s a colour guard to ensure the mousse is being applied evenly, and the formula has melanin technology to tailor the colour to your individual skin tone for a natural-looking finish. My favourite part about this tanner is that it fades very evenly and doesn’t leave the skin looking patchy (if you’re a sunless tanner user, you know exactly what I’m talking about).
7. China Glaze Flip Flop Fantasy Nail Polish – I lovvvve neon nail polishes like this one from China Glaze for the summer, I feel like it’s the one time a year I can get away with such vibrant, fun colours (colours like this also help bring out my tan ;) bonus). Since I work in an office for my full-time job, I keep my look conservative by wearing a nude pink, like OPI‘s ‘Bubble Bath,’ on my fingernails and reserving the neon polishes for my toes.
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Annabelle Smoothliner – A Great Drugstore Beauty Find

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Whether you’re creating a smokey, sultry eye or simply need a crisp tightline, Annabelle Smoothliner is the perfect drugstore liner to get the look.

I often find drugstore liners to be too waxy and require having to be heated up with the aid of a lighter in order for them to glide on smoothly and pigment-rich. With the Smoothliners, I don’t have this problem  they glide on effortlessly and the colour shows up true to form.

As a waterproof, long lasting, and hypo-allergenic product, this pencil is perfect for tightlining and lining the waterline. It won’t irritate the eyes (even if you’re a contact lense wearer) and it stays put in the waterline with no bleeding. I like to tightline my upper lashline with the black Smoothliner then I apply a white or beige liner to my waterline for a wide-awake appearance. (Note: After applying the Smoothliner, wait a few seconds for it to set before blinking, otherwise it will transfer onto the white/beige on the waterline.)

Though this is a waterproof product that’s not going to move once it sets, it is still able to be smoked out for a sultry eye if you work quickly; simply line the upper lashline then use an angled eyeliner brush or pencil brush to blend out the product before it sets. To really ensure the pencil is locked in place, top it with a black eyeshadow or transluscent powder (especially if you have oily lids that are prone to creasing).

With availability in 7 shades (as seen in the photo below) and 2 finishes (matte and metallic), there’s a finish and colour to suit pretty well any look. At such an affordable price, I’m tempted to buy them all! I’ve been eyeing Jade for my next purchase it’d be perfect for adding a subtle pop of colour to my eye look for the summer. What colour is your favourite?
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Annabelle Smoothliner, $6.95 CAD. Available in stores or online.

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The Amazing Blow-Drying Tool You Need Now ~ Hotheads 3D Hairbrush

 

Blow-drying my hair has to be the most boring, time consuming part of styling my hair. I’m always on the look out for something to make the process easier and I discovered my new must have hair tool that makes the job so much better and it won’t destroy your beauty budget either.

Melody Iafelice Hotheads 3D hairbrush

One day while picking up hair products at my local Cosmoprof* I passed the section of brushes, and on the top shelf was a new brand of interesting looking brushes from Hotheads Hairbrush. I was intrigued by the label that reads “cuts drying time by 50-60%” thats alot! I ask one of the trusted staff to tell me more and while she hadn’t yet tried it personally she did tell me that several pro hairstylists had returned to buy additional ones after trying it out. Repeat purchase!! That speaks volumes. I bought the medium size (56mm barrel) shown below.

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This is what makes the Hotheads Hairbrush 3D® unique:

The ultra light 3D® has 3 types of bristles in one amazing brush to dramatically improve the health of your hair. The patented shaped barrel gives ultimate control and cuts drying time in half, for an amazing flat iron finish. The single pinned firm nylon with round tip is designed to handle all hair types. Black boar bristles grip the hair for great smoothing, volume or curl! White boar controls frizz and adds amazing shine!

My 3 Simple ‘How To’ Steps:

  1. I start by blot-drying my hair after washing/conditioning it. Meaning I only ‘squeeze’ the water out of it with a towel repeatedly from roots to ends in between brushing my teeth, doing my skincare etc. until it is no longer soaking wet. I find that by not wrapping it up or rubbing it with the towel, there is much less breakage and frizzing.
  2. Then when I’m ready to comb through, I use a light leave-in conditioner to help work through tangles, and blot some more. I may add a bit of volumizing mousse to the roots, then blow dry the roots using my fingers.
  3. When almost dry at the roots, I section my hair in two, making a top and bottom section (part my hair across my head from ear to ear) then grab my hotheads brush in medium and start working through the section. In no time it’s dry. Follow up with a flat or curling iron if you wish, to complete your desired style.

What a great purchase and still amazed at how amazing this brush works!! The drying time was immensely reduced, in about 10 minutes it was dry and now I don’t mind blow-drying my hair at all. The finish was so smooth, shiny and straight yet fuller looking. No need for the flat iron (unless you want your hair super flat n’ straight) Here is the finished result of my hair using the brush as the only styling tool.

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Canada order your Hotheads Hairbrushes at Delineation prices $19.99-$30.95 CAD

*professional industry card required

 

Ciao Bellas, Until Next Time

~Melody xo

 

 

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{ Turning Up the Heat with Kenneth Bernard Thermal Protection Spray ~Chatters Salons }

 

Blow drying followed by another hot styling tool is enough to put most of us into hair rehab for the repeated damage we inflict on our poor hair. Yet it does take some help from these tools to get our hair looking good, and while we may skip a day here and there to help give hair a break, what are you doing to protect it on the days you are turning up the heat?

20140620-074256-27776307.jpgI was pleased to receive a few products to try from Chatters Hair Salon, a Canadian chain of retail stores with salons, carrying many brands of hair and beauty products. My package contained three items from Kenneth Bernard, the Chatters in-house brand,  and one of them was the Thermal Protection Spray. It is said to “penetrate the hair shaft and forms a protective barrier to prevent damage caused by flat irons and curling irons. The formula provides style memory, leaving hair soft and shiny.”  In my drawer o’ hair products there is not a thermal protector and probably because I don’t use flat or curling irons often, yet I do use a blow dryer on a high heat. So maybe I should use one right?

 

 Kenneth Bernard Thermal Protection

 

My first trial was with the blow dryer, spritzing on damp hair, combed through and blow dried. The mist is extremely fine so it’s not a soak down on strands if you use it after blow drying and before heat tools (which I also tested it for) I was pleased that it felt like nothing in my hair, not slippery, not heavy or a coating which is a good thing for fine hair. It was left shiny and soft which was promised on the packaging. If you are headed to the beach or going to hang outdoors in the summer sun and heat, give your strands a little spritz and off you go as the line contains Tru-Last Colour which uses their advanced technology to shield you colour treated hair from color loss and fading.

 

The Kenneth Bernard line can be found in Chatters across Canada and products prices start at about $20CAD. Speaking of heat styling tools, Chatters has a hair appliance trade-in offer until June 30th 2014, and more. For details click here

Tell us what your favorite hair styling tools and products are so we can check them out too!

 

 

Ciao Bellas, Until Next Time

~Melody xo

 

 

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Beauty on a Budget: L’Oreal Infallible Eyeshadow

Drugstore eyeshadows have gotten a bad rep for being chalky and having a lot of fallout, but L’Oreal has defied that stereotype with their Infallible Eyeshadows. These shadows are buttery, blendable, and contain additional binders (oils) to coat and magnify the colour pigments, revealing beautiful shimmer and maximized colour. With availability in 24 shades ranging from bright, bold colours to soft, neutral shades, the possibility of looks you can create is endless!

As a crease-resistant, waterproof, 24hr-wear product, these shadows are a summer must-have. Lately I’ve been skipping my usual winged liner and packing L’Oreal Infallible Eyeshadow in ‘Amber Rush’ on my lids then applying a few coats of mascara instead. Though simplistic, this look does a lot for my eyes – Amber Rush is a stunning copper shadow with red and orange undertones that make my blue eyes pop.

At only $7.58 for a quality shadow that will last months on end, this product is a steal and absolutely worth adding to your collection.

lauren the intern _dark text

As written by Lauren Wilson

L’Oreal Paris Infallible Eyeshadow, $7.58 CAD. Available in stores and online.

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On Wednesdays We Wear Pink

On Wednesdays We Wear Pink
I’m in an extra girly mood today, so I thought I’d share with you a few of my favourite pink products:
1. The Balm ‘Down Boy’ Blush - Every girl needs a classic pink blush in their makeup collection. This shade is quite universal, it looks great whether I’m pale or sunless tanned. As a highly pigmented blush, this product gives you plenty of bang for your buck; I’ve used mine just about every day for over a year now and have hardly put a dent in it!
2. Essie ‘Fiji’ Nail Polish - This is another product that looks great no matter what my current skin tone situation is. As a nearly-white pink shade, Fiji makes even the palest of skin look more tanned.
3. Bath and Body Works True Blue Spa ’60-Second Manicure’ Hand Scrub – This is a product I recommend to everyone, but especially those that sunless tan. This scrub makes hands baby soft, allowing your tanner to go on evenly without clinging to knuckles, cuticles, or the webbing between your fingers who knew that was possible?
4. LUSH ‘Rose Jam’ Bubbleroon – These shea butter-based bubbleroons made for dry and sensitive skin types allow you to have long, luxurious baths without drying or irritating the skin. Rose oil and rose absolute soothe the skin and make for a beautifully scented bath it’s as if you’re lying in a bed of roses. With the rose scent continuing to linger on the skin, you remain soothed and relaxed hours after your bath.
5. MAC ‘Creme Cup’ Cremesheen Lipstick – This is arguably my favourite lipstick, as I’ve gone through more tubes of it than any other colour I own. This ‘my-lips-but-better’ cool-toned, nudey pink is great for everyday wear. The formula is rich in pigment, creamy, moisturizing, and has that classic MAC vanilla scent that I love so much.
What is your favourite pink product? Comment below :)

Transparent_Lauren the intern

As written by Lauren Wilson


Beauty product
13 CAD - bathandbodyworks.com

TheBalm blush
23 CAD - beauty.com

Rose Jam
6.80 CAD - lushusa.com

essie nail color, fiji
9.25 CAD - macys.com

MAC Cremesheen Lipstick, Creme Cup
16.00 CAD – maccosmetics.com
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Peter Thomas Roth FIRMx Peeling Gel

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Products like blackhead strips are deeply satisfying to use because you can literally see the unwanted gunk being removed from your pores (gross, I know, but satisfying). Peter Thomas Roth’s FIRMx Peeling Gel gives you that same feeling. The peel uses multiaction enzymes (pineapple, pomegranate, and keratinase) along with cellulose to visibly roll, lift, and sweep away dead skin cells.

The word ‘peel’ freaked me out at first, as it brings to mind horror stories of harsh chemical peels (think the episode of Sex and the City where Samantha decides to get a “freshening” peel), but this peel didn’t irritate my dry, sensitive skin in the least. This product is suitable for all skin types, as it addresses a number of concerns: aside from just sloughing off dead skin, the peel also works to remove impurities and decongest clogged pores, making it wonderful for oily/combination skin as well.

I was actually worried that my skin would breakout from using this product solely because after using it I couldn’t stop touching my face it makes your skin feel SO [so so so so] soft. This peel is fabulous for prepping the skin for makeup application, as it evens out the skin’s texture leaving it with no dry patches or bumps for your products to cling to.

Whether you’re dry, oily, or somewhere in between, you need to pick yourself up a tube of this peel ASAP your skin will thank you for it.

lauren the intern _dark textPeter Thomas Roth FIRMx Peeling Gel, $55.00 CAD (3.4 oz). Available in stores and online.

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Refresh Your Skin With Marcelle Hydra-C 24H Energizing Hydrating Gel

gelee-vivifiante-hydratanteWith summer now here and the air becoming more humid, I’ve switched out my usual daytime moisturizer for something lighter: Marcelle Hydra-C 24H Energizing Hydrating Gel.

Hydrating gels like this are essential to my summer makeup routine, as the heavier daytime moisturizers I use during the winter tend to melt in the summer heat and cause my makeup to become cakey. This alcohol-free gel absorbs almost immediately, leaving the skin feeling cool and refreshed. With no greasy residue, the ultra-lightweight formula keeps my makeup looking just-applied all day.

‘Lightweight’ is usually a term used to describe moisturizers targeted toward combination and oily skin types, but the Hydra-C gel, though lightweight, is specifically designed for dry skin. The gel’s formula contains antioxidants, cucumber, green tea extracts, and vitamins C and E to protect against harsh climatic elements while restoring the skin’s protective barrier function for a bright, glowing complexion.

As a hydrating facial product, this gel is designed to increase the skin’s water content with the use of humectants, such as glycerine, to draw water molecules out of the air and into the skin. With added occlusive agents to prevent moisture loss (namely, silica), the gel doubles as a moisturizer. This  combination of humectants to make the skin supple and plump and occlusive agents to keep it feeling smooth and soft is the perfect formula for a radiant, youthful complexion.

This hypoallergenic gel is perfume-free, so there isn’t much to be said about its scent (or lack thereof). The packaging, however, deserves some attention. Though an affordable, drugstore product, the sleek glass packaging gives this product the look and feel of a high-end skin care product.

The only thing I would change about this gel is the fact that it doesn’t have SPF in it. The lack of SPF isn’t huge deal for me, as I typically apply sunscreen in addition to my moisturizer anyhow; however, I know many people rely on having SPF built into their daytime moisturizer. If you’re a one-step gal, I would try the Hydra-C 24H + SPF 15 Moisturizing Cream instead.

If you haven’t tried any of the Marcelle skincare products yet, they’re definitely worth checking out. Luxury for less? Yes, please!

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As written by Lauren Wilson

Marcelle Hydra-C 24H Energizing Hydrating Gel, $23.95 CAD. Find in stores or online.

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I’m a Brilliant Brunette Thanks To John Frieda Hair Care ~ Beauty On A Budget

 

Sometimes it’s a struggle to find a shampoo and conditioner for my color treated hair that makes a good impression on me. It needs to be hydrating and/or moisturizing, (just like in skincare there is a difference in those two terms) soft and silky, add a healthy looking shine and the big one…the shampoo must not make my hair feel like crap a dried up birds nest while in the shower. As for scent, I’m flexible as it never lasts long or is replaced by one from a styling product. Being open to price ranges really gives some selection from salon to drugstore and I have an ongoing selection of high/low $ hair care in the shower.  Yet it’s always great when the wallet friendly products stand out.

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I found the JOHN FRIEDA BRILLIANT BRUNETTE® LIQUID SHINE ILLUMINATING SHAMPOO & CONDITIONER  some time in the last year and have done a repeat buy of it since first using it. It also gets pretty good reviews on various sites. While it says for brunettes, there is no color in the product and so I think even lighter haired people could give it a try. The shampoo is moisturizing and makes my hair silky when lathering up and my hair still feels soft even after rinsing. The conditioner glides through and doesn’t feel greasy. It rinses out quickly leaving my hair silky and smooth, ready to style.

 

TIP: Do not apply conditioner to roots first as it can weigh hair down. Start applying mid way down and work into ends. Then the little bit left on your hands can be worked to the upper half of the hair and closer to the roots. I usually leave it in for 2-3 minutes, comb out any tangles then rinse.

While I can find John Frieda products at just about every mass/drug store, these two items are harder to locate, and it seems that it’s my local Walmart that always has them. At about $8.00 CAD ea. I’m able to keep a spare set in the extra shower/bathroom.

 

What are your favorite wallet friendly hair care products?

Ciao Bellas,

~Melody xo 

 

 

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