Before fall comes to an end and winter fully embraces us in her icy grasp, I want to share some of my favourite things from the past few months. Fall is probably my favourite month (I'm a November baby, I'm sure that's part of the reason). I, no matter how cliche it may be, love the crispness in the air and the beautifully coloured leaves. This season is my favourite time to run outside and I generally feel a renewed interest in cooking and baking after a summer of only ever wanting someone else to BBQ me a hot dog (I'm a simple girl at heart ;). So while I don't need much to adore fall, there were a few things that helped make the season even more enjoyable. They are as follows...
1. Aveda Thickening Tonic
My new hair stylist recommended this to me during our first visit and I am in love. I'm pretty lazy with my hair and am not talented at styling in any way. I spray this product in my hair and blow dry - the spray gives my hair a little something extra without making it feel sticky or full of gritty product. I will repurchase this without question. My first bottle is about half empty and I bought it in August.
2. True Blue Spa - Shea Cashmere Shower Cream
This body wash is intense in both smell and consistency. I don't buy it often, but it's been quite lovely to use during the change in season. It really does leave your skin feeling soft and smooth.
3. Stila Lip Glaze
I got this last year in a little holiday set from Shopper's (it also came with a cream blush and sparkle headband - bonus). I find the berry hue to be a lovely lip colour for fall. It's not too aggressive (let's save the full blown red lip for the holidays, shall we?) in colour since it's a gloss so it's very wearable and isn't sticky, which I love.
4. Jo Malone Peony & Blush Suede Cologne
I bought this quite indulgently during a stop over at the Toronto airport while travelling to my cousin's wedding. Unfortunately I don't think you can order this online in Canada (another justification I gave myself for the purchase). It's a strong scent but I really like it and have received a compliment every time I've worn it. According to Nordstrom, the perfume "features a charming mix of peonies, red apple, jasmine, rose and gillyflower, all mingling with a sensual blush suede."
5. Plaid Blanket Scarf
I really wanted a scarf like the one pictured above (a similar one is linked in the title) last year but couldn't find one in store and didn't want to pay shipping and duties to order online. So happy I found this one this year at Garage, a store I really don't shop at but passed by one evening while picking up part of Chris's birthday gift. I'm so grateful they had this on display and was able to snatch it up - I've been wearing it nonstop.
6. Ugg Black Leather Booties
I bought these at the Ugg outlet in Vegas - what a steal. I can't believe they had my size at an Ugg outlet (I'm a very average 7.5 and bought these in an 8). I can't find these online anywhere but I'm sure other brands have similar styles. I generally prefer brown to black footwear but since I was at an outlet I couldn't pass up the deal. And you know what? I'm so glad I have them in black! I've worn them so often and they make me feel fashionable, put together, and a little badass. They're also really comfy because they are Ugg. I'm pretty casual in my footwear choices, so these are a nice alternative to regular Uggs - which, I admit, make me look like I'm still in high school - without being heels. In summary: love.
7. Red Leather Bag
My dad brought me this bag back from a trip to Italy. I love it because he thought of me while away and brought back something special, and because it is in the quintessential fall colour (red is not a colour I gravitate towards normally, so it's nice to have someone else pick it out and for me to expand my horizons!). It also zips up completely and has an outside pocket for my iPhone which is great.
8. Bath and Body Works Candle in "Autumn"
I LOVE THIS CANDLE SO MUCH. I buy one every year (I wish I had bought more than one this year...). Bath and Body Works describes the scent as: "A crisp fragrance that celebrates fall in red delicious apple, rich cedarwood & green balsam." Delightful.
9. The Crossroads of Should and Must by Elle Luna
I've been doing quite a bit of soul searching lately (see last post) and found this book inspiring. It's an easy read from an artist who quit her cool tech job to pursue her passion. She advocates choosing "must" over "should" and offers examples to prove it's never too late to do what you love. I highly recommend checking out Ms. Luna, if not with this book than via her website or through one of her online video talks.
10. David's Tea Fall Teas - Peanut Butter Cup and Cranberry Orange Muffin
I'm a hot beverage lover. I enjoy both coffee and tea (and hot chocolate for that matter) so please don't make me choose. These teas aren't my favourite of all time, but I did enjoy them and their festive flavours. There's pretty much nothing better than curling up with a nice cup of tea and your coziest blanket on a fall evening. The. Best.
My faux leather jacket from Joe Fresh (bought on clearance LAST summer) and the app Charity Miles which lets you raise money for the charity of your choice just by going for a run. Neither of these photograph very well so they just get a verbal mention :)
Scent is a very personal thing. My first foray into a signature scent was when I wore Abercrombie & Fitch's "8" perfume in my teens. Then, a few Christmases later, my mama gave me Sarah Jessica Parker's perfume, Lovely, because I adore her and its title is my favourite word. It was a wonderful and sentimental gift. Lovely has since been discontented and I've ventured into other fragrances. Now if you smell me it is likely one of these three - the usual suspects. Since I love peeking into people's makeup bags and finding out what beauty products they can't get enough of, here I offer my top three perfumes of the moment.
Elizabeth and James Nirvana White
Probably my ultimate fave and my new signature scent. I bought it in Chicago last year in the rollerball and then bought the perfume oil a few months later. I plan on purchasing the full size bottle (I miss the spray!). It's described as "a captivating blend of delicate peony, chic muguet (whatever that is...) and tender musk for a feminine scent with dark sophistication."
Maison Martin Margiela - "Replica" Beach Walk
This is my most recent and most summer-y scent. I blame Sephora for this indulgence. I placed an order for my face cream and they, without my request/knowledge, sent me postcards with perfume fragrances on them - similar to magazine perfume samples. It was love at first smell. I can't wait to take this on vacation with me (Chris and I are going to Vegas in 2 weeks! eeeee). This one "combines fresh and radiant notes of bergamot, coconut milk, lemon, pink pepper and musk to evoke a familiar but forgotten moment - a walk along a sandy beach." If I can't live at the beach, I'mma take the beach to me.
Marc Jacobs Honey
I got this last year when I redeemed optimum points at Shopper's. It is a pretty strong scent so I don't wear it as often as the others, and I would consider it more of a "fun" or "daytime" fragrance. The bottle sure is cute, though :) Marc got a little more descriptive and writes "Honey is a sunny, delicious floral - energetic and alluring, with a sparkling golden touch. The perfect mix of brightness and warmth. This buzzing fragrance energizes with the freshness of green pear and a bright splash of fruity punch and juicy mandarin. Orange blossom resides at the heart of the fragrance and mingles with the nectars of honeysuckle and peach for a note of sparkling femininity. Honey, vanilla and smooth woods dry down to a warm, golden base." Phew. Well put, Marc.
*Photos found on Google Images and Pinterest
My name is Anna and I am a skincare junkie.
My favourite thing to buy at Sephora is (shock, horror) not makeup, but skincare. I've loved pampering myself for as long as I can remember and started buying Lancome face cream when I was in high school. They discontinued my favourite moisturizer (still not over it) and since then I've been experimenting and searching for my ideal regimen.
I thought the best way for me to introduce my love of skincare would be to show you my tried and tested daily routine.
I should specify: I have dry, sensitive skin. The term "sensitive" in skincare kind of annoys me because a lot of people use it as a synonym for "sensitive to acne breakouts." I have sensitive skin in that many products give me a rash or a reaction. So, it's been an interesting journey on the search for the perfect routine.
But, alas, I believe I've found it (at least for now ;)
My most important tip in regards to skincare is to listen to your body. Not everyone needs a routine. Some people have great, fuss-free skin. They can literally splash some cold water on their face and call it a day. Some people can sleep in makeup and totally be fine with that. I enjoy taking care of my skin. I find it relaxing and it makes me feel pampered. So, I do the whole nine yards.
I cleanse with a balm. I find it the best for my skin. However, skincare guru Caroline Hirons would suggest it is a great method for anyone with any type of skin. It involves massaging the balm into dry skin and removing it with a muslin cloth (a softer version of the terry facecloth). I simply adore this method of cleansing. The best balm I've found is by Antipodes (I've also tried Clinique, Liz Earle, Eve Lom, Ren and Josie Maran).
I recently tried two samples from Sephora that I immediately bought in full size. They are a skin oil (I apply after cleansing - I don't really need to "tone" but do sometimes) from Fresh and a face cream from L'Occitane. They are game changers. My skin is no longer tight and feels amazing after I use both these products. They might not be needed in the summer, but they have been essential this winter.
I have yet to find the perfect eye cream but I do enjoy both of the ones pictured above. The Avene is for "sensitive" eyes (lovely and gentle) and the Origins sample is for brightening. I have bought the full size version of this in the past and have tried a bunch of different kinds since then. The hunt continues!
Lastly, I use the Clarisonic every now and then for a deep clean/exfoliation. I used it more often when I worked in TV and wore tons and tons of makeup, but I still enjoy using it every week or two. The Korres lip butter pictured is also gorgeous. I keep it in the skincare drawer in my bathroom for a final step.
Of course, as a true junkie, I also use serums, masks, toners, etc. etc. but I don't use them daily and I don't want to overwhelm you, my dear readers. Skincare "add ons" can be saved for another post on another day :)
Do you have any skincare questions or recommendations?
Sometimes there's nothing better than curling up with a good book.
However, as a magazine editor, I read all day. So, often, reading is the last thing I want to do during my down time. I'm embarrassed to say I've had The Paris Wife for years and have yet to read it. Dark Places is on loan from Chris's dad (and I've shamefully had it for months!).
I received Yes Please (from Chris) and I Must Say (from my mom) for Christmas and haven't even opened them because I've been busy getting through my birthday gifts first (just finished Lena Dunham's Not That Kind Of Girl - thanks, Jane! I loved it).
[Author's note: This post is making it quite clear I have lovely people in my life who give me great gifts]
So, pictured above is my spring reading list. I plan to have all of these finished before the summer starts. Giliian Flynn (Dark Places) is the author of Gone Girl and while I didn't love that book, I'm interested to give her writing another go (side note: did you know Flynn was laid off from Entertainment Weekly as a writer only to have her movie adaptation appear on the magazine's cover a few years later? Holy smokes!). The Paris Wife is a novel inspired by Ernest Hemingway's first wife. I love him and I love Paris so I assume I will love that book. Yes Please is supposed to be awesome (and how could it not be?) and Martin Short is my favourite actor/comedian so I'm really looking forward to reading that one, as well.
What are you reading this spring? Any great recommendations? Let me know in the comments below :)
I love a good lipstick.
It's probably my favourite makeup item. Although I rarely wear makeup, I simply adore it. I love buying it. I love looking at it. I love watching other people do it — I just love it. I favour the natural look, however, I experiment the most with lipstick. In fact, I think bold lips are having a moment right now. Case in point: my friend and I recently went into Shopper's for — wait for it — purple lipstick. She had seen our beloved Mindy Kaling wearing it and wanted to try it for herself. I ended up buying the same Stila shade, too.
So, in an ode to the delightfulness that is lipstick, here are my favourite shades of all time. As to not favour any one over the other, I've decided to order them from lightest/sheerest to boldest/brightest.
(Helpful hint: you can click on the photos to enlarge :)
1. Dior Addict Lipstick 178 "Urban"
The only lipstick I've ever finished and repurchased. I bought this on a whim at Sephora while visiting Chris when he lived in Ottawa a few years ago. I've read a few "disappointing" reviews on this one but I LOVE it. It's soft and subtle but oh so pretty. I'm almost done my second tube and will, shockingly, purchase a third.
2. Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick "Vouvray"
Bite Beauty is Canadian (whoop whoop) and is just lovely. This shade is described as "ballet pink" (adorable) and I love it. It's creamy and a packs just a little more punch than the Dior.
3. Chanel Rouge Coco 39 "Paradis"
Chanel. Need I say more? I got this because my first foray into Chanel beauty was a lipstick that cracked as I was reapplying during a celebratory dinner date with Chris. So, obviously, I needed a new one to fill my luxury quota (as if Dior isn't luxury ;). I prefer this colour (I bought the other — I believe it was "Boy" — in the Paris airport. I think it was more about buying Chanel in Paris than the actual lipstick). There's probably nothing more luxurious than pulling Chanel from your handbag. Just a little drop of fancy <3
4. Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel 120 "Voila!"
Marc Jacobs is my favourite designer. When I found out he was venturing into makeup I was very excited. He did not disappoint. The packaging is gorgeous with a magnetic close (love that!). This pinky/red-y (magenta?) shade is a beauty and has been one of my favourites for quite some time.
5. MAC Retro Matte "Flat Out Fabulous"
Last but certainly not least is my newest favourite. Full disclosure: I ordered this because Kaitlyn from The Bachelor tweeted it was her go to colour and I just loved her style on the show. Although she and I have incredibly different colouring, this colour works on both of us which makes me think it would work on anyone. It's a matte finish so I always make sure to layer it over lip balm.
Hope you enjoyed this little peek into my makeup bag :)
Hello! I'm Anna, a journalist with a whole lot of love in my heart and thoughts in my head.
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