nails

OPI Holland Collection

October 27, 2011

Coming to you this Spring! OPI just released yet another collection on their Facebook page! And this one's got me really excited. There's tons of shades to choose from, whether tame & feminine or loud & bold shades.



1. Gouda Gouda Two Shoes
2. Wooden Shoes Like to Know It
3. I Don't Give a Rotterdam
4. Thanks a Windmillion
5. Red Lights Ahead...Where?
6. Kiss Me On My Tulips
7. A Roll In The Hague
8. Petal Faster Suzi
9. Dutch Ya Just Love OPI
10. Vampsterdam
11. I Have a Herring Problem
12. Did You Hear About Van Gogh?


They're slated for release early 2012.

Who's looking forward to February? I am! Well, minus all the snow of course.
... and it's not even November yet.

Photo credits to OPI

outfit

Layered

October 27, 2011

As we progress through October, the sun rises later, and sets earlier.. the days are getting shorter & shorter! Not to mention colder. It's impossible in my books to leave the house with less than two layers on..


Tank: Gap | Cardigan: Urban Behaviour | Jacket: Mackage | Bottoms: J Brand
Sunnies & Scarf: F21 | Shoes & Clutch: Coach | Ring: YSL Arty






So I layer, and layer, and layer 'til I'm warm. :)

outfit

Warm Fall Nights

October 22, 2011

Even though it's been really cold in Edmonton, there's been a couple afternoons with warmer weather which I'm soooo thankful for. I want to avoid snow as much as possible!

Wore this to the MAC launch party the other night :)










Top: Wilfred | Tank: Wilfred | Bottom & Rings: F21 | Bag & Scarf: Coach | Shoes: Zara


Enjoy the warmer weather while you can!

Edmonton food

Guru Fine Indian Cuisine

October 21, 2011

Guru: one who is regarded as having great knowledge, wisdom, and authority in a certain area, and who uses it to guide others

Guru - 17021 100 Avenue NW - Edmonton AB

After my horrendous 3 midterm day, Vince took me out for dinner to check out the Indian restaurant Guru on the west end of the city. They are regarded as a more expensive fine dining cuisine, and I couldn't wait to see what the interior looked like!



We arrived shortly after 8pm, to a relatively empty restaurant. They did an amazing job with the decor & renovations though, it looks so classy inside! Our waiter explained that the restaurant is usually quite busy during dinner hours, and the rush ends around 8:00 each day. I think we had some pretty good timing that day :)



To be honest, the only time I've ever sat down and ordered from a menu at an Indian restaurant was two years ago, at a restaurant in Chunking Mansions Hong Kong. I was terrified of being in that building and didn't pay too much attention to what my friends & I had ordered for dinner. So, on that very Tuesday night, I was facing a dilemma of not knowing what to order.

Luckily our waiter was extremely helpful and we ordered two dishes for dinner: butter chicken with garlic naan & lamb biryani with raita.

And let me tell you. The food was SOOO good. Unbelievable.



The butter chicken is unlike any that I've had before, and I actually prefer the one here at Guru over any Indian restaurant I have tried in the past. I know that the base of the sauce is supposed to be supported by a rich buttery taste, but this one isn't as strong. The sauce seems to be more tomato based, giving it a tangy personality with kick! We ordered the garlic naan on the side (it isn't included) and the pieces were massive. The flavour of garlic was perfect when dipped into the butter chicken sauce.



Lamb biryani & raita: Boneless Alberta lamb pieces dum cooked with rose water flavoured rice and spices, served with raita I had no idea what biryani was before ordering it, nor did I have a clue about raita, but I'm glad we ordered it. Biryani is basically a rice based dish infused with herbs and spices, and our order came with lamb. There were crunchy bits of herbs and veggies dashed throughout the fragrant rice, which was slightly spicy, but toned down when eaten with the raita. Raita reminds me of tzatziki, in that it's a yogurt based sauce. The herbs mixed in were not overpowering at all, making it a refreshing sauce to eat with the spicy rice.



Even though we had ordered only two dishes amongst ourselves, I was pretty full and we were able to pack a little food home. I love when restaurants have their own takeout bags - its so professional & makes me feel like I'm worth a nice bag (HAHA). Seriously.



Although their prices are a little more expensive compared to most Indian restaurants around the city, I feel that the price is worth it. Don't be turned away! I had a great experience at Guru, with the attentive and prompt servers - don't forget that this place is slightly upscale compared to most others, so I feel as if you pay for the experience altogether, not just the food :)

Guru Restaurant & Bar on Urbanspoon

nails

Nicki Minaj for OPI!

October 21, 2011

Released earlier today on OPI's official Facebook page was news of an upcoming collaboration in January with Nicki Minaj! Woo, I love Nicki Minaj and her outrageous sense of style!







As I said, the collection will be available in January, consisting of six bold shades shades:


L-R: Super Bass Purple Shatter | Metallic 4 Life | Save Me | Fly | Did it on 'Em | Pink Friday


After successful collaborations with other celebrities like Justin Bieber and Katy Perry, I'm super excited for this collection with Nicki Minaj!

Picture credits to OPI

Sephora

Sephora F&F is Live!

October 20, 2011

If you somehow haven't heard, the Sephora Friends & Family sale has been up and running since the early hours of this morning. The site did experience some difficulties throughout the day - we crashed it! Seriously. I went there and saw this:


Seeing this seriously had me laughing


People were unable to get their codes, or they were able to and the codes didn't show up like they were supposed to. Either way, it seems as though things are back to normal, but a lot of items are sold out!

To get your F&F code, simply go to www.sephora.com/friends and enter you email address.

It's quite simple, really, but it's such a headache this year. This code is valid only on orders online, to residents of the United States, and does not include Canadian orders *cough* BIG SURPRISE *cough* >_> Seriously, Sephora, please try to make events in the future that include us Canadians up here who give you lots of business! You raise the prices waaay up once the products get across the border, so the least you could do is give us a discount once a year.



It's such a headache though. Each code is unique and can be used only once. But.. when I went to go place my order, my personal code was invalid and apparently had already been used. Ugh. So I went and entered a second email address to attain a second code. Did anyone notice how the rules state that up to five emails may be used per computer? Doesn't that imply that, if you have five email addresses, you could get five unique codes and use them. Why not just make a universal code as in the past and prevent problems. Silly.

Anyhow, just wanted to share a bit of what I picked out! I'm trying to limit myself :)



1. NARS Nail Polish in Bad Influence
2. Sephora by OPI Nail Polish - Going Nude, Eh?
3. Philosophy Purity Cleanser 32oz (huge!!)
4. Sephora Favourites Lashstash
5. Philosophy Parties for Hosting Duo
6. Benefit Cosmetics The Big 10
7. Philosophy Twinkle Berry Body Lotion
8. Clarisonic Deep Pore Cleansing Brush Head Replacements


And I want this NARS blush palette SO BAD but it was out of stock by the time I went to make an order. Hopefully it restocks before November 2nd.. I NEEEEED this!



Let me know what you guys pick out! :)

beauty

MAC Glitter & Ice Launch Party

October 20, 2011

A couple weeks ago, I received an invitation from my local MAC store to preview their upcoming holiday collection, Glitter & Ice.



This particular holiday collection is inspired by Olympic skater Johnny Weir, hence lots of glitter, and of course the ice! What really attracted me to the collection though was the white packaging. I looove white. Especially electronics wise. Anyone else like me? White phone, white laptop, white headphones, etc.



The idea of canapes and frosty drinks lured me in as well, so with my best friend in tow we headed to the mall on Tuesday night.

Stepping into the store, we were provided with cards containing all products from the collection, and then we were immediately handed yummy drinks - milk with kahlua & vodka over ice with marshmallows! It actually tasted pretty good. Surprised they weren't checking for IDs though ;) What? Sometimes people think I'm 16!



The store itself isn't really that big, and it got crowded pretty fast. The store was bustling full of customers, with lovely ladies dressed like the models in the press pictures throughout, handing out appetizers. The appetizers were quite delicious, with the event catered by the Century Hospitality Group (Lux, Century Grill, Delux, Hundred, etc.) They had an assortment of about 5-6 appetizers! I wanted to stick around just to eat!


lemon shortbread cookie sandwich filled with pink buttercream



Beef tenderloin w/ fresh salsa, cheese & edible silver atop a baguette slice



White chocolate truffle w/ coconut & dark chocolate interior


But lets get down to business. Each year, MAC's holiday collection features a variety of single makeup items, but also brush sets, and lip & eye palettes. I'm working really hard to curb my makeup hoarding tendencies, and most of the makeup didn't really appeal to me much *phew*. The mineralize eyeshadows, however, were a little too pretty to pass up.


Mineralize Eyeshadows in Frozen Blue & Fresh Ice







Fresh Ice


Fresh ice is a very pale icy pink shadow with a strong white frost finish. The formula is very soft and rather powdery, giving a sheer to opaque finish depending on
the amount of layering of the product onto the eyelids. When applied wet, the formula is much smoother and achieves opacity. I didn't experience too much fallout with this one, but as with most of my mineralize eyeshadow shades, I use them as a highlight for the browbone or the inner corner of the eyes.


Mineralize Eyeshadow in Frozen Blue


Frozen Blue is a blueish grey shade with a frosty finish, and just like Fresh Ice, it can be applied sheer or opaque depending on the application and look you're trying to achieve. Applied wet, the formula is more smooth than powdery, and becomes relatively opaque. I envision myself applying this in the inner corner of eyes, or on the lower lash line for certain eye looks.



Sometimes I really need to question my makeup buys when I really don't wear that much. I think it's moreso the appeal and look of the product itself that draws me in. I tend not to like mineralize eyeshadows, or use coloured eyeshadows to be honest, but I think these two shades will be versatile enough to work with any range of colours. They're both nice neutrals to pair with anything, but I really wish they weren't so powdery. I definitely recommend application with water or mixing medium to bring out the colour in these shadows, and just to make them easier to use.

Each of these shadows retails for $25, and the Glitter & Ice collection is slated to hit stores on October 27th! :)

brushes

Sephora 2 in 1 Flex Kabuki Brush

October 19, 2011

Another brush review for you today! My collection is steadily growing again.. augh. I picked up this kabuki brush with my recent Sephora order back in August because the reviews were decent and it was on sale. This brush is still available online for the sale price and I would highly recommend you pick it up!



The name of the brush is derived from it's useful applications - the brush can be used as a powder or blush brush. There are two different conformations the brush can be used in, which is open or closed. The flexibility of the brush makes it as though you are getting two brushes for the price of one, but I really would recommend using it for either powder or blush, not both at the same time.



The reason being that .. I find the brush is most useful when closed, resembling a regular kabuki brush. When in the open position, the brush can cover a huge area, but it's almost the size of my face. Sephora designed this brush to be used for blush in the open position, and powder in the closed position, but I'm not a fan of mixing products onto one brush simultaneously. In the closed position, it is angled, and can nicely reach the areas around the nose and apply powder evenly over the entire face.



The hot pink bristles against the black handle of the brush are so eye catching as well. The bristles on this brush are natural goat hairs, so the brush is very soft! The bristles are not densely packed together, but there are enough there to make application easy and effortless. I haven't had any issues with fall out at all!



The only thing I would caution you about before using the brush is to make sure to wash it. When I first washed my brush, the water was pink! A lot of the dye in the brush seemed to be loose, so it was good to get that washed out instead of applied on my face. The size of the brush is perfect for travelling, or keeping in your makeup bag for on the go touch ups.

You can purchase the brush here on Sephora's website. Original price of the brush was $26, and at the sale price of $9, this brush is a steal! :)

Makeup

Hourglass Illusion Tinted Moisturizer Oil Free SPF 15

October 17, 2011

I got a sample of this tinted moisturizer back when I made my last purchase with Sephora, and never got around to trying it! I haven't personally tried any of the products from Hourglass, but this was definitely a nice product to try out and ease me into the brand.



The great thing about this tinted moisturizer is that it is oil free, and includes SPF. SPF is so important for everyday use, even in the winter time. Believe it or not, the harsh rays from the sun can actually be worse in the winter than the summer, since the snow reflects the rays and amplifies the long term damage that can be done to our skin. Bottom line, wear SPF all year round please!



When I first squirted the product out of the package, it was much thicker than I thought it would be. To me, a moisturizer is usually thinner in consistency and relatively light in comparison to a cream. This moisturizer is actually on the thicker side, and very high coverage. It's to the point that I would rather call it a foundation.



The sample I got was in ivory, which was a very close match to my skintone - my face is lighter than the rest of my body.. which is why it looks so light on my hand! In the summer months, I am darker, but once the tan fades, this shade will be perfect for me.



I did like that this product had very high coverage, but since it is thicker, it has a slight stickiness to it that I'm not too fond of. It leaves a nice dewy finish to my skin, but overtime (5 hours) it does make me a bit oily. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone with oily skin, but combination to dry skin will probably take this product very well. This product will also work well for anyone who experiences drier skin in the winter months, as the moisturizer will keep your skin hydrated!



Available for purchase at Sephora.

nails

Breast Cancer Awareness

October 16, 2011

As you probably know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast Cancer happens to be one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers among women (second to skin cancer), which is why it is so important for everyone to understand the facts and try to protect themselves. Women are not the only ones affected by breast cancer - men can have it too, just that it is much rarer amongst the male population.

Every year, during the month of October, I only wear shades of pink on my nails to support breast cancer research. Yes, I understand that it isn't much, but it's a start! A lot of my friends were involved with the run for the cure, and various other activities aimed to raising funds for cancer research. I encourage you to do the same if there is something you can do in your area!

I am taking a course in Oncology this semester, and it really hits home when you learn about all the different mechanisms that cancer can use to take over the body and destroy your health. Once something sets off, a variety of pathways can be taken by a cancerous cell to invade different parts of the body. This course has really been eye opening, and honestly, this is one of the reasons why I'm still in school. I know that if we all try and contribute to this fight against cancer, we will one day find a cure!



I was gifted this polish by my aunt a couple years ago, and I call it "breast cancer pink" because it almost perfectly matches the pink ribbon that represents breast cancer awareness. It is actually Revlon's Twinkled Pink, which is a creme polish that becomes opaque in two coats.





Although it is no longer available, I'm sure there are plenty of dupes out there for this colour. OPI also releases one shade each year in support of Breast Cancer Awareness, and this year it is a pink shatter. When I get my hands on that, I will be sure to swatch it!

Sephora

Sephora Friends & Family 2011

October 16, 2011

If you haven't heard yet, Sephora's annual Friends & Family sale is coming up soon..



Word on the street, er, blogosphere, is that this year, the codes will be one time use only! Official details are yet to be announced, but at least we have advance notice to build up wish lists! What will you be getting this year? :)

I will try my best to work on getting all my opinions for product yet to be reviewed up before then!

outfit

Fall Colours

October 15, 2011

Fall has definitely hit Edmonton by storm - last week it was still nice in the high 15's .. but this week, temperatures have dropped substantially and I can no longer leave my house without needing a jacket.

One of my favourite things about the fall is the beautiful colours that show up in the foliage - oranges, reds, purples. It's a sign that the vegetation is dying.. but all good things must come to an end.


Top - Club Monaco | Vest - H&M | Jeans - J Brand | Shoes - Asia | Bag - Coach


I'm really liking this faux fur vest I picked up - adds glamour to a simple outfit, and not to mention it keeps you warm!

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