Saturday, December 31, 2011

Gravity can't begin to pull me back to the ground again

Last month, I asked a huge favour from you guys to vote for me in the Loose Button Lancome Luxebox contest. Thanks to your amazing help, I won! I was sent the limited edition Lancome Luxe Box last week, and have since had a chance to test out the products.



As usual, the products came well packaged and were cushioned to prevent breakage of any kind. I got a cute card with my name/blogger username on it that congratulated me on winning, as well as the information pamphlet.


Aquatique Waterproof Eyecolour Base in 'Nude' - Long-lasting shadow wear and vibrancy, with absolutely no creasing. The silky-smooth, waterproof formula holds pigment in place and delivers nude, barely-there colour that evens out eyelids and leaves them with a natural, matte finish.

This was so creamy upon application and dried quickly.  It does leave a slight tint, but since I have strong yellow undertones, it was a barely noticeable difference. Those with pink undertones may see a more significant tint. I managed about five hours of eyeshadow wear before I started noticing creasing along the inner corners. There are definitely cheaper alternatives for what this product does, but I do prefer the texture of this to Urban Decay's Primer Potion.

Genifique Youth Activating  Concentrate - Breathtakingly beautiful, skin looks as if lit from within. Its youthful quality returns: cushiony soft, astonishingly even, dramatically refined.

This was the product that I was most excited to try! I apply it at night after I wash my face. There is a slight chemical smell to it, but it's not overpowering and goes away immediately upon application. One thing I have to say about this serum is that it absorbs really fast! I would suggest applying a little at a time to separate areas of your face, as opposed to dotting it around your face and then rubbing it in. After a week, my skin does look a bit more plump, but not drastically so. I guess we'll see after a few more weeks!

Cils Booster XL Super-Enhancing Mascara Base - The magic behind this mascara base is the conditioning formula - featuring microfibers and Vitamin E - to add extra length and thickness to your lashes for added visible performance to your mascara.

I was also excited to see this product, as I had been wanting to experiment with mascara bases for a while. When applying, I found that it didn't exactly coat my lashes.  The product itself is white, and after my first layer, only a few lashes were coated in the white product. I had to hold the mascara wand vertically and use the tip! While it definitely made the application of my mascara (Make Up For Ever Aqua Smoky Lash) a lot smoother and clump-free, I found that it actually deflated the curl of my lashes.

Tresor Midnight Rose - The passionate temper of an extroverted rose, the delicious addiction of a raspberry and blackcurrant explosion, the bite of vibrant woods.

This smells exactly as described. It's a very strong floral scent, with hints of fruit. I've never worn or owned perfume before, but I have been wanting to lately. I couldn't seem to commit to purchasing Marc Jacobs' Daisy perfume, because I couldn't keep PN's voice out of my head, telling me it smelled too fruity and childish.  This is definitely a more 'adult' perfume with a nice balance between the floral and fruity scents. My only gripe is that I wish it came in a rollerball, or even a mini-spray bottle. I prefer to spray the perfume on to my clothes, as opposed to dabbing it on my wrists.


As promised, I have a second Lancome Luxe Box to give away to a lucky reader! Unfortunately, this contest is limited to Canadian residents only. The rules for this contest will be very simple.

1. Like the Lancome Canada fan page on Facebook. (mandatory)
2. Follow me publicly on Google Friend Connect. (mandatory)
3. Fill out the form below!

This contest will run until 11:59 PM EST on January 7th, 2012. For additional entries, you can also do the following:

2. Follow me on Twitter.

Good luck to all those who are entering, and thank you guys so much for taking the time out of your day to vote for me.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

You hate the fact that you bought the dream and they sold you one

Coincidence & Chance silk blouse, Old Navy waffle-knit sweater, Forever21 bead necklace

"You look pretty... like a boy."
PN has never really been afraid to voice his opinions when it comes to my outfits, so I thought it was pretty sweet that he tried to start off with a compliment, haha. He's been on the fence about the layering look using crew-neck sweaters, with his main complaint being that it looks like something he would wear on a daily basis (sans necklace).  Personally, I love the look when done with an extravagant collar (like the pussybow blouse in my last post) or with a great bib necklace.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Lights fill the streets spreading so much cheer

I know I've been a bit behind on posts, but I wanted to wish everyone a happy holiday. There's no snow in Toronto, but there's enough cold in the air to give a nip to exposed ears!


Joe Fresh blouse, Old Navy cable-knit sweater, American Eagle knit jeggings, Diba boots (from Winners), House of Harlow starburst earrings

Monday, December 12, 2011

Two hundred fifty thousand miles on a clear night in June


Layer, layer, layer... and then throw a big cozy jacket over the whole thing.  This is the way I've been dressing lately, hence the lack of outfit posts!

I've been searching for the perfect shearling jacket for almost a year, and I really thought that I would end up with an aviator style. I was eying this jacket for quite some time, but eventually passed on it due to poor quality. I was immediately drawn to this jacket when I saw it in store.. too bad they no longer carried my size! I quickly whipped out my phone and started scouring Google and eBay. After finding an online option, I went on and on about whether I should go for the sale price on the jacket in a colour that I could settle for (black) vs. paying full price for the jacket in the colour that I absolutely wanted (the tan). PN, in an attempt to get me to shut up about the pros and cons, made my mind up for me by gifting it to me.. and also because he's a total sweetheart.

In other news, here are the winners of my December giveaway (chosen via random.org): 
elaiNE
Rites of Beauty
Please send me an email at joanna__le@hotmail.com with your full name, shipping address, and which prize package (#1 or #2) you'd prefer. I know that I left the items up as a mystery, but it'll make the holidays a bit more exciting! The first person to email me will get their preference.

Thanks so much for participating! I may do another giveaway before the end of the month, so keep a lookout.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

If we ever meet again, I'll have so much more to say

So this past weekend marked the last Estee Lauder warehouse sale for the year.. I wasn't able to attend the September sale, so I made up for it by taking my cousins for their first sale experience! I attended the sale on Saturday, and I'm extremely proud of my self control. It was hard to curb my enthusiasm since it felt like I was experiencing the sale for the first time, thanks to the frantic running around that my cousins did. You can see my past few hauls here and here.

I only picked up two items:

MAC moisturelush cream - $25 (looks like marshmallow fluff!)

MAC matte blush in 'Coppertone' - $15

For the December sale, they reintroduced the $5 charity packages. I had heard that for the September sale, they were no longer doing it, so this was a nice addition. However, they changed the idea behind the charity packages. They no longer had a display board out to show what was in the package. They were advertising it as a 'mystery package of 3 products for only $5.' They also said that the packages 'may or may not' be different, which I thought was a little silly. Between my cousins and I, we figured out that the only item that differed was the shade of the eye shadow.

MAC mineralize eye shadow in 'Faux Gold'

 MAC amplified lipstick in 'Neon Orange' (a pro colour, extremely similar to Morange)

MAC lipglass in 'Social Light'

And last but not least, the free gift:

MAC select sheer/loose powder in 'NW15'

I didn't do any swatches for the charity package this time around because I'm actually not sure if I'll be keeping anything, or putting it away in my box of goodies for future giveaways.

Speaking of my box of goodies.. I think it's about time I tried to dwindle my stash, so I'll be hosting a giveaway with not just one prize package, but two! Each package will contain two brand new cosmetic items. I won't list the actual items, so this will be a nice little surprise before Christmas!

The rules for entry are INSANELY simple:
1. Follow me publicly on Google Friend Connect. (mandatory)
2. Fill out the form below and submit it!

For an extra entry, you can follow me on Twitter as well. This contest will be open internationally, and will run until Friday, December 9th 11:59 EST. The winner will be chosen randomly.

NOTE: Comments that say 'enter me' on this blog post will NOT be included in the final draw. Please fill out the form below if you would like to be eligible for this giveaway.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

I wish you all the love in the world, but most of all I wish it for myself


Adding a necklace can seriously spruce up an otherwise boring work outfit!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Well I've been afraid of changing 'cause I've built my life around you

Joe Fresh blouse, Forever21 beaded necklace, Forever21 braided belt

I honestly can't think of a better colour pairing than olive green and brown! I can't believe it's almost December, and we've yet to see any real snow in Toronto.  The weather's been pretty decent so far, and my fingers are crossed that it will remain so until the end of the year!

I hope everyone had a safe weekend. I can't even begin to imagine what Black Friday must've been like for everyone on the other side of the border, but I'm sure the sales were worth it!

Monday, November 21, 2011

And the song birds are singing like they know the score

Remember this post about my Loose Button Luxe Box? Well I was lucky enough to be entered in to their Lancome contest! The top 25 bloggers with the most votes will receive two limited edition Lancome Luxe Boxes; one for them, and one for a giveaway.

The voting rules are simple:
2. Click on the Lancome Contest tab and fill out the form.
3. Vote!

You can vote for your favourite blogger(s) once a day, every day until December 9th. I would really appreciate it if you guys took the time to vote, :). Remember, I would be receiving a limited edition Lancome Luxe Box to give away to one of you lucky readers!

.. and because I don't like to do a post without a picture, here's one from Halloween:

Sunday, November 20, 2011

No one said it was easy, no one ever said it would be this hard


I definitely don't need anyone to tell me that I wear these pants way too often! The gold zipper on this shirt is such an amazing detail, and at the price point, how could anyone really refuse? You can actually unzip it all the way down, which means I will probably try styling this as an open cardigan some time in the near future.  The only bad thing about this top is that it's hard to put on at first because the zipper can get quite cold! Also, tucking it in in the front makes it look like you're slouching from behind, no matter how straight you're standing (180 degrees, I swear!).

Thursday, November 17, 2011

You don't know how lovely you are

Zara blouse, Zara cardigan, H&M gold skirt, H&M cable knit tights, ALDO ankle booties

While I love the metallic gold sheen of this miniskirt, I've only worn it about three times since I purchased it last year. This thing is teeny, and the only appropriate way to wear it is with thick black tights underneath!  This was clearly not a well-thought out purchase, but it does make for great holiday wear.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

If you ever leave me baby, leave some morphine at my door


I have no clue what I'm doing in either photo, but I do love the way this dress fits!  I wore this outfit to the IMATS on November 12.  I got to see some pretty faces again (Jennifer, Fiona, and Sandy) and some new ones (Donna, and Elaine)! Being the poor blogger that I am, I didn't bring a camera to the event, so no photos with all the girls, :(. 

I didn't do too much damage at this beauty event, but I certainly can't say the same for the other girls! I don't think I purchased enough to warrant a blog post on it, but I'm sure you'll see some of the products pop up. One of the products that I'm most excited to wear is my new OCC lip tar in Pretty Boy!  If you'd like to see more swatches, you can see what I already own in this post.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor


Although I rarely find a chance to wear these American Apparel pants, I absolutely ADORE them. They make me look extremely leggy, which is very welcome for a petite person!

My outfit posts will probably be decreasing in number as the temperature continues to drop. I've never been one for the cold weather, and I show my displeasure by piling on as many layers as I possibly can, and then throwing on a scarf, hat, and a pair of gloves (sometimes two!). Of course, over all that, I throw on my Aritzia parka (similar to this one but a shorter length), which I've had for close to 6 years!

I just don't know how to dress for style and comfort in the winter.  Any suggestions?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Someday we'll know why the sky is blue


The sun is setting earlier and earlier, so the best we could do was substitute natural sunlight with a porch light! It was pitch black outside while we were taking these photos and my photoshop skills are subpar, so excuse the wonky lighting, haha.

I've gotten tons of questions about these ALDO loafers. I purchased them in a size 8 (38, according to ALDO), and after wearing them for an hour or two at the American Apparel warehouse sale last month, I was limping around with blister.! They definitely need to be broken in, especially because the black trim around the shoes are very stiff. I stuffed the toe and heel area tightly with newspaper and left them in for two days. I then wore them around the house for a few hours with a pair of thick socks, and now they fit like a dream! They don't pinch anywhere, and the trim no longer rubs up against my ankle bone.

Monday, October 31, 2011

I bought a ticket to the end of the rainbow



Happy Halloween, everyone! We didn't bother buying any real candy this year, since no one has stopped by the house in the past three years. Sad, I know, but that just means more Fruit to Go for me to devour!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

It won't ever get old, not in my soul, not in my spirit

This month, I received a complimentary Luxe Box from Loose Button. For those of you who have never heard of Luxe Box, it is Canada's version of a Birchbox. For $12 a month (shipping included), you receive a box of 4-5 deluxe sized samples of different beauty products based on a beauty profile, which you create when you first sign up. This is a great way to try out a variety of different products without committing to a full sized one, and of course, who doesn't love receiving a surprise in the mail?


The packaging, which is different from the first Luxe Box that I had ordered, is still quite sleek. The design is all about minimalism, but still looks quite professional.  Anyone who has ordered a Luxe Box before would instantly recognize the logo on the front.


With each box, there is a pamphlet that gives a brief description of each product and their uses.  This month, Loose Button included a gift: a coupon for $25 off any order of $75 at Dealuxe, a Canadian shopping site that sells designer goods.


The products are well packaged, with padding to ensure their safety. Here's a brief description of each product, as taken from the pamphlet, along with my opinion after using the products for a week.

Olay Professional Pro-X: Eye Restoration Complex - Hydrates to restore the area to its optimum appearance by improving the look of crow's feet. Reduces excess fluids to diminish dark circles and puffiness.

I don't normally suffer from dark under eye circles, but they are slightly discoloured and get extremely puffy when I am tired. I use this every day and night after I moisturize. It's very creamy and sinks in to your skin quite easily without any noticeable scent. I haven't seen that much of a difference in the week that I've been using this product.  However, on a whim, I decided to use it on a dried out pimple, and I woke up the next morning with a hydrated patch of skin! Eye creams are generally more hydrating than regular moisturizers, so this would be a great pick me up product for the harsh winters.

Lise Watier: Flash Lift Radiance Vials - A concentrate of smoothing agents and moisturizers for a lifting effect and instant radiance.

Out of all the products, this is the one that I was most excited to try. On Saturday nights, I often attend late night volleyball sessions, which means I wake up Sunday morning with skin that has definitely seen better days. My face often looks blotchy and dull, with my under eyes looking puffier than usual. I applied this after my moisturizer (although the instructions state that you're to apply it before), and instantly noticed a very strong, floral smell. After I tapped it on to my face, the scent did go away, but every once in a while, I would catch a random whiff of it. I was expecting some kind of miracle, and was disappointed to see that nothing had really changed about my skin after 15 minutes. However, after I applied my usual bit of concealer and foundation, I realized that while my skin hadn't lost its blotchiness, it did look quite radiant and supple.  My skin looked fresh, like I had had a full night of sleep, and it wasn't entirely due to the magical effects of a concealer.

China Glaze: Crackle in Oxidized Aqua - Innovative technology creates a deconstructed crackle design over your favourite shimmer, glitter, or creme nail lacquer.

The crackle polish has been a huge trend lately, so I'm sure many of you have already experimented with the different brands of crackle polishes. This is a very pretty metallic green, and I would recommend using this over a dark base colour for a nice contrast, since it is on the paler side.

Keratase: Elixir Ultime - Brings shine, nourishment, and deep conditioning to the hair while smoothing the hair fibre. Helps restore strength to the hair and protects it from external aggressors.

This is a very light serum, and it actually has a kind of spicy scent to it! I've used Moroccan Oil before, and it often left my hair feeling greasy and weighed down, especially when used on dry hair. This product felt extremely light in my hair, and instantly smoothed away all the frizziness and flyaways. I don't normally blow dry my hair, but I bet this would make an amazing heat protectant, as the shine and smoothness would really be infused in to the hair shaft.

Lise Watier: Plumpissimo Le Gloss - Instantly makes your lips look fuller, sexier, 'poutier.'

This works like any other plumping lip gloss you may have tried. There is a slight citrus-y scent, and it's a brush applicator as opposed to a doe-foot. There is some slight tingling sensation when you first apply it. The colour is very sheer and glittery. This would look pretty amazing over a red lipstick, I think. My lips are naturally very plump, so there wasn't much of an affect to be honest.


I'd like to give a huge thank you to Loose Button for providing me with the opportunity to review the October Luxe Box.

Overall, I actually really loved the products in this month's box, especially because there were products from all beauty categories (hair, skin, and make-up).  I'll admit, I was disappointed with my previous Luxe Box, but Loose Button has definitely upped their game. They've added more brands to their line-up, and it has certainly made a difference in the diversity of the products.  I'm sure even the pickiest person could find at least one product in this box that would appeal to them!

Although the Luxe Box was sent to me for review purposes, I am not being compensated in any way for this blog post. This review was strictly based on my own, personal opinion.

Friday, October 21, 2011

He's got a rolled cigarette hanging out of his mouth


This chunky, peppered knit was welcomed in to my wardrobe with wide open arms. After going through my closet, I realized I don't actually own very many sweaters. I have a variety of cardigans, as every woman should, but I don't have a ton of knits. It's harder to style, but it honestly beats layering with a bunch of thin shirts! I'll definitely be trying to add some more pieces throughout the winter.


What specific detail do you look for when shopping for knits?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

It's such a shame 'cause now that lovin's changed

GAP blouse, H&M faux leather pants, ALDO loafers

Thought I'd interrupt the recent slew of American Apparel pieces with something new!


I've seen many other fashion bloggers wear crisp white blouses with such style and grace, and it's made me quite envious. One of the biggest problems I have with white blouses is that I tend to end up looking like a waitress.. so to solve this problem, I spiced up the outfit with some faux leather and leopard print.

Any other tips to try? I'd love to hear them!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

If spring can take the snow away, can it melt all our mistakes?


Yet another item picked up from the American Apparel sale. Clearly, I am a fan of the brand.

I think every woman should at least try on a midi/maxi skirt, if not purchase one. When I first took this skirt home, I tried it on in front of the mirror and twirled for a full minute. I've never felt so feminine and flirty! When I go down stairs and the skirt flares out around my legs, I feel like I'm in some sort of music video, haha.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Ten million fireflies lit up the world as they fell asleep


The weather over this past long weekend has been spectacular.. I'm certainly sad to see it go!  

This top is another item that I picked up at the American Apparel Warehouse sale this past weekend. I have several items from American Apparel, and I truly love their classic pieces and the fit/quality. However, I'll be the first to admit that their prices are quite steep for what the products are. Most of my items were gifts, or purchased with some sort of discount. If I had to choose one item that I would pay full price for, it would definitely have to be their cardigans. I've had this cardigan for two years, and I wear it constantly.

On an unrelated note, my hair is so long that I don't think I can even consider it 'layered' anymore. Anyone know of a great salon within the GTA or surrounding area? I think it's finally time to do something about it..

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Gave you everything I had and no less


Colour blocking with fall colours? Yes, please!
Whatever I was looking at in the last photo must have been pretty amazing. I swear I can see the surprise in my eyes through my sunglasses, haha.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

And I've missed your ginger hair and the way you like to dress


1. Sam Edelman Roza in black
2. Jessica Simpson Cheetah in Dusty Taupe Nebraska Nappa
3.  Vince Camuto platform sandals (can't seem to find this style anywhere)

Sorry for the crappy photo quality! Had to make do with my point and shoot. I went to the Petite Feet sample sale today after work with no expectations and not really looking for anything in particular.. and pretty soon, I had a full basket with 9 pairs of shoes! I left the sale with these three. The sale runs from today through to Monday, October 11th (Canadian Thanksgiving), so there's plenty of time left to browse!

Some tips:
1. Bring cash. LOTS OF IT. Better to be safe than sorry. It's a cash only event, and I was not prepared. Regular brands (Jessica Simpson, Naturalizer, Franco Sarto, etc.) had a price range of $50 - $125, while the 'boutique' area (BCBG, Sam Edelman, Vince Camuto, etc.) had prices from $75-175. I was so very lucky that PN works in the area, and he swung by to save me from my shoe dilemma!
2. Don't be afraid to experiment with half a size up and down from your original size. I'm normally a 7.5, but the Vince Camutos are a size 7 and fit perfectly fine. Size 7 strappy sandals were pretty forgiving, and the slightly roomy size 8 booties could be fixed with a pair of socks.
3. Take your time to explore every aisle. I actually find the Rozas on a table for size 10 shoes.
4. Ask the workers for help in looking for shoes. One worker was extremely helpful, and brought out a huge box of size 7.5 shoes when he noticed me walking up and down the same aisle, hoping for new shoes to appear. He also helped me look for the Rozas after I lost them! I had put them back because they were a tad too small, and in 10 seconds, they were gone. Another girl actually found them before I did, and the worker helped me track down a size 6.5, which was the size that the other girl was actually looking for.

If you're a size 6, I ENVY YOU! There was a huuuuge selection for that size, with enviable rack after rack of Sam Edelman flats and pumps.


On another related note, I also picked up these ALDO loafers. I'm feeling incredibly guilty after all these new shoes though, so these will probably be going back.. It took me a week to hunt them down in my size, too!

After today's splurge, I'm kind of afraid to see what will happen at the American Apparel warehouse sale..