Winter Plaid

posted on: Tuesday, December 29, 2015

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I can't believe my holiday break is half way over and that new year is only a few days away! Last year I remember feeling like I couldn't think about a new year and that I wasn't up for any new goals or resolutions. I was in the midst of my final year of my masters degree and just needed to take things day by day. This year I feel like I can think about the year ahead and come up with some goals. 

Anyway, on to the outfit. I was sent this plaid dress from Gentle Fawn to style and have pretty much been in rotation once a week since. I ended up wearing it for a holiday dinner with JP's family the week before Christmas, as well on Christmas Day. When the weather is cold I just feel like throwing something on that is easy to wear and cozy. This outfit also includes a couple other current favourite items. I've been pretty much living in these faux leather leggings from Dynamite, and for the warmer winter days I have been turning to this coat from Misguided. 

xo Ashley

Outfit Details
Garage Blanket Scarf
Gucci purse borrowed from Karolina's Style
Alex and Ani bracelet

Photos by JP

Christmas With Papyrus

posted on: Thursday, December 24, 2015

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First I would like to say Merry Christmas Eve to everyone! I feel like the holiday season came out of no where this year! I recently received the cutest holiday rescue kit from Papyrus, and it has definitely been a lifesaver! The last few years Christmas wrapping (and decorating) has been a last minute task for me, so having a kit like this was really handy! I received a holiday kit a few years ago as well, and loved the wrapping paper I received (check out my past Christmas wrapping post here!) The wrapping paper from Papyrus is always stunning. Papyrus also have really beautiful cards for all occasions (my favourites are actually the wedding shower and baby shower cards). Included in the kit I received was a set of holiday cards, a snowman and snowflake holiday dish, silver and gold pens, a gold journal, two gift bags, and a beautiful gift box. 

Well, I'm off to get ready for a Christmas Eve dinner with family. Happy Holidays!

xo Ashley

Holiday Gift Ideas From Too Faced

posted on: Monday, December 21, 2015

toofaced2_6449 toofaced2_6575 toofaced2_6472 toofaced2_6474 toofaced2_6502 toofaced2_6511 Too Faced is one of the makeup brands with the cutest packaging around, and the holiday sets are no exception. I recently received an array of products from Too Faced and I wanted to share a couple of the sets from the holiday collection that would make great last minutes gifts for those on your shopping list who are makeup obsessed (or for those looking for holidays sets for themselves). The holiday theme this year is Christmas in Paris.

Le Grande Ch√Ęteau 
This is a beautiful little house and when you open it up there are three palettes inside and a deluxe mini of the Better Than Sex Mascara. The three palettes are called Paris in Love, Paris After Dark, and Paris Au Naturale.

Le Petit Tresor
This set includes a mini glitter bag with three of the Too Faced Le Creme Colour Drenched Lipsticks. Two of the colours are the best selling shades Taffy and Nude Beach, as well as a new colour called Wham. 

So those are a couple of the holiday sets, but there are a lot of other get gift sets and products in general from Too Faced that would make great Chirstmas presents. 

Are there any holiday makeup sets that are on your wish list? Let me know in the comments!

xo Ashley

Burt's Bees | Uncap Flavour

posted on: Wednesday, December 9, 2015

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I'm excited to bring my readers a giveaway from Burt's Bees!

The giveaway is for the Burt's Bees Lips Balms. I'm a huge fan of these lip balms and have bought the Original Beeswax, Honey, Pink Grapefruit, and Coconut & Pear many many times over the years. These have also been a long time favourite for my husband and I will usually put the original beeswax lip balm in his stocking each Christmas. I find these lip balms to be really moisturizing and soothing. They are especially great during the winter months, and I pretty much carry one of the Burt's Bees Lip Balms in my purse at all times. I was also really excited to try the new Apple Caramel Lip Balm, and think the scent is heavenly. 

The giveaway will include the full collection of Burt's Bees Lip Balms including:
the new Apple Caramel Lip Balm, Original Beeswax, Pink Grapefruit, pomegranate, Coconut and Pear, Vanilla Bean, Honey, and Mango.

If you would like to win the full collection enter the Rafflecopter giveaway below. 

This giveaway is open to Canadian residents only; 18 years of age or older. Giveaway will closed December 14th. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

VII Oxygen Eye Masks

posted on: Monday, December 7, 2015

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I was sent the VII O2M Oxygen Eye Masks a while back, and it has taken me a lot longer then I intended to review these! I've been wanting to try some eye masks for quite some time and was very pleased with these ones. I cannot say that I saw any drastic differences in the fine lines around my eyes, but I definitely found these to be soothing and calming on my eye area. They are meant to use over night, but I've worn them during the day for a couple hours when I had a rough sleep and my eyes were puffy and tired. These have a really neat gel coating on them and they feel really cooling when applied. The masks are said to be brightening and hydrating. During the winter months my skin becomes quite dry and dehydrated, so these have been great to add a bit of moisture back into my skin. 

Have you tried any eye masks? 

xo Ashley

Beach Blonde

posted on: Saturday, November 21, 2015

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I briefly mentioned the John Freida Beach Blonde Sea Salt Spray in my Sunday Link Love post back in May, so I thought I would fill you in on my thoughts on some of the other products in the Beach Blonde Collection. It would have probably been more appropriate for me to talk about this line in the summer, but sometimes I need a hint of  summer to help me get through the winter. 

As I mentioned before, I actually used to use the John Frieda Salt Spray years and years ago and was really disappointed when it was discontinued (it used to be called Ocean Waves), so the re-release was really nostalgic for me. I'm not sure if it is the exact same product at it was before, but it smells the way I remember it smelling. I love the scent and I love the salty texture effect. It smells like coconut sunscreen, which is pretty much summer in a bottle to me. It's described as a texturizing product "for carefree tousled styles, windswept waves, or piecey perfection". 

When I saw that there was also a shampoo, conditioner, and a deep conditioner in addition to the salt spray I was pretty excited to see what they were like. The shampoo states that it cleanses heat-damaged hair and is infused with energizing mint and seaweed. It's also described as light weight, but adds texture and brightens hair. I find the mint scent is energizing and invigorating, and a great scent to help you wake up in the morning. 

The conditioner is also described as being infused with mint for a cooling effect. It's also meant to be light weight, calming, and smoothing. Along with the mint it is infused with omega-rich kukui. 

The masque is meant to be used in place of the conditioner for a deep conditioning effect. It has sea kelp and monoi oil to help repair damaged, dehydrated hair. I didn't know what monoi oil was, so I quickly googled it. Apparently it is a scented infused oil made from soaking Tahitian Gardenias in coconut oil. It has many uses, but one traditional use is to soften, repair, and rehydrate hair. 

Over all I really like these products and am happy they have been brought back. I love the mint and coconut scents and I know that in the depths of winter I'll be happy to have little reminders of summer weather when I use these products. Have you tried the John Frieda Beach Blonde hair products? 

xo Ashley

Estee Lauder | Pure Colour Envy Matte Sculpting Lipstick

posted on: Monday, November 16, 2015

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The Estee Lauder Pure Colour Envy Matte Sculpting Lipsticks are described as saturated colour in a creme matte formula, and includes a curated collection of 12 shades. All shades in the range are means to stand out and be bold. I received the colour Stronger* and adore it. Stronger is described as a vibrant violet, and I think it's quite a wearable version of a purple lipstick.  I also think it is one of my favourite matte formulas because it's so comfortable on the lips. Another thing that I love about the Pure Colour Envy Lipsticks is the packaging, which is square shaped with gold detailing and a magnetic closure. 

Have you tried the Estee Lauder matte lipsticks? I'd love to hear some your favourite matte lipsticks! Let me now in the comments below.

xo Ashley

Red Barn and White Jeans

posted on: Monday, November 9, 2015

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I took these photos with my sister a couple weeks ago when it still looked like Fall, but now we are full blown into winter here in Calgary. I woke up this morning and there was a blanket of snow everywhere. Anyway, I loved taking these outfit photos with my sister. We always have fun when we go on our photo adventures. 

xo Ashley

Outfit Details
Oak and Fort sweater
Joe Fresh distressed white boyfriend jeans*
Madden Girl slip on sneakers
Target floppy hat
American Eagle blanket scarf
Coach Willis bag
Rayban Meteor sunglasses via SmartBuy Glasses*

Irresistible Me Curling Wand

posted on: Sunday, November 8, 2015

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I received the Irresistible Me 8 in 1 Sapphire Curling Wand* to try out a little while back and it's been the perfect addition to my hair styling tools! For the past several years I gave up on curling irons. When I felt like adding some curl to my hair I just used my hair straightener. I still use my straightener to add curls every once in a while, but I really love the effect of a curling wand. 

It took me a little while to get used to using it, but now that I have the hang of using the curling wand I really love it. If I just want to create messy curls like the curls pictured above it only takes me 5 minutes. I haven't had a chance to trying out all 8 of the attachments yet, but so far I've loved being able to create subtle differences in my curls. I think the best part of this curling wand is how quickly it heats up (20 seconds!). Another great feature is that the LED display screen shows the temperature and changes from blue to green when it is ready. I also like that the display screen flashes blue with the words off when you turn it off, which I use as a reminder to unplug the curling wand. It also has an automatic shut off so you don't have to worry about accidentally leaving it on. I love this because my straightener doesn't have any features like this and I always find myself double checking that I turned it off, and even finding a couple times that it was still on!

I started a YouTube channel a little while ago, but haven't been brave enough to put up a video yet. If anyone is interested I can attempt to make a video using the Sapphire Curling Wand. Let me know!

What hair styling tools do you use? Do you use a curling wand?

xo Ashley

Marc Jacobs Decadene

posted on: Monday, November 2, 2015

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A few weeks back I attended a launch event for the new Marc Jacobs perfume Decadence, and I was lucky enough to receive a bottle to test out! I'm already a fan of Marc Jacobs perfumes, so I was pretty excited to see what this one was like. Currently I  own Daisy, Daisy Eau So Fresh, and Lola and love all three. Decadence is quite different from the other three Marc Jacobs perfumes I own. 

The scent is described as sensual, luxurious, and woody. It starts with notes of plum, iris and saffron, then the middle notes are of rose, jasmine and orris, and finally the base notes are vetiver, papyrus woods, and liquid amber. I'm not the best at describing scents, but to me it feels feminine and warm. When I wear something like Daisy the scent feels fresh, carefree, and airy, while Decadence feels more sophisticated and mature. Even though Decadence is a deeper, heavier scent it still has some sweetness to it. I think it's an appropriate scent for fall and winter. I also think the bottle is really fun too. It's like a miniaturized handbag. 

Have you had a chance to check out Marc Jacobs Decadence? What do you think? What's your go to perfume? 

xo Ashley

Fall Texture

posted on: Monday, October 19, 2015

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I wore this outfit a couple weekends ago when my sister and I decided to check out the Reptile Expo. The goal of the expo was to promote education around reptiles. My sister loves all animals, so she didn't flinch at all when she was offered to hold a scorpion and a ball python. I opted out of holding any of the reptiles, but I decided to just cautiously touch a couple snakes. It was a beautiful fall day so we also took a little walk and grabbed some chicken and waffles to share from the Waffles and Chix food truck. It really was a perfect fall day. 

Outfit Details
Coach Classics Willis bag
Aldo felt hat
Urban Outfitters sunglasses

Photos by my little sister 

Current Mascara Line Up

posted on: Saturday, October 17, 2015

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The mascaras pictured above are my current favourites and most used mascaras. I think that each one creates a different feel. I like having a variety of mascaras to choose from for when I want to wear a more subtle day look with lots of length, or when I want to amp up the volume and have more dramatic lashes.

L'Oreal Telescopic Shocking Extensions
I decided to pick up this mascara because Anna of Viviana Does Makeup and Suzie of Hello October always talk rave about the L'Oreal Telescopic mascaras. The brush on this mascara is really flexible which allows you to get really close to the lashes and completely coat them. I also find that this mascara adds a lot of length to my lashes.

Clinique High Impact Mascara
I have been using this mascara since I was in Jr. high school. I used to wear this mascara exclusively. Over the years I have discovered many more mascaras that I love, but this one will always be one of my favourites. The Clinique High Impact mascara is a great mascara for volume and for thickening the lashes.

Benefit Roller Lash
My mom and my aunt both raved about this mascara when it first came out, which eventually persuaded me to give it a go. This mascara has a "Hook & Roll" brush which Benefit claims helps your lashes hold a curl without using an eyelash curler. I find that it does have this effect with my lashes.

Maybelline Lash Sensational
This mascara is said to have a volumizing and fanning out brush that coats every lash. I typically prefer volume over length so I like the effect of this mascara.

Make Up For Ever Smoky Extravagant*
This mascara has a large brush which kind of reminds me of a Christmas tree. The rounded base is meant to create volume and the narrowed end of the brush is meant to separate lashes. As I've mentioned above, I love mascaras that give my lashes volume, so I really like this mascara.

Have you tried any of these mascaras? Let me know your mascara recommendations in the comments!

xo Ashley

MAC | Matte Lipstick Collection

posted on: Wednesday, October 14, 2015

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Lately I have been falling head over heels for MAC products. I've always loved MAC, but recently I've been obsessing over their matte lipsticks. MAC expanded their matte lipstick collection and there are so many on my wish list. The lipsticks pictured above are Ruby Woo*, Stone*, Velvet Teddy, and Fashion Revival*.  Ruby Woo is a Retro Matte and is described as a blue-red, Velvet Teddy is described as a deep beige, and Fashion Revival is described as a deep raspberry. The lipstick I was most intrigued with was Stone. I've seen it popping up on Instagram and blogs and loved it. When I first tried it on myself though it took me a minute to get used to. I think it's an unusual shade, and it's definitely not a colour I would usually gravitate towards, but I think it's fun to experiment and try out different looks. I've experimented wearing it with a few different lip liners and I'm really loving it.  MAC describes it as a muted greyish taupe brown. Some of the other lipsticks in the othe MAC matte lipsticks that are on my wish list are Whirl, Please Me, Kinda Sexy, Tropic Tonic, Instigator, and Mehr.

Are there any MAC matte lipsticks that are on your wish list? 

xo Ashley 

PC Wine Collection

posted on: Sunday, October 11, 2015

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In preparation for the upcoming holiday season, President's Choice has released a limited edition wine collection featuring five wines from different regions around the world. The collection is available in 37 select Real Canadian Liquorstores in Alberta. I was given the opportunity to try out the collection, and just in time for the Canadian Thanksgiving weekend! I love trying new wines, and especially love red wine, so this collection really appealed to me. It features one white wine and four reds curated from regions such as Italy, Spain and California. I haven't had a chance to try out all the wines in the collection, but I will update with my impressions in a later post. For now here is a little about each wine in the collection.  

Plata 2013 Chardonnay
Coming from California, this Chardonnay fills the palette with flavours of tropical fruit and citrus. It's described as crisp and smooth. 

Rotllan Torra 2010 Priorat Reserva
This wine is described as having as smoky mineral aroma, as well as dark berry, licorice, and vanilla. The flavour is of blackcurrant and cherry. JP and I had this wine with dinner the other night and loved it. 

Plata 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon 
This wine is described as capturing the sunny California coast, with bold and robust berry notes. It's also suggested that it pairs well with pizza, which I am looking forward to trying!

Banti 2013 Toscana
This wine is aged for one year in a Slovenian oak cask. It has earthy, and sweet leather flavours, and pairs well with tomato based pasta sauce and strong cheese. 

Poggiofoca 2009 Sovana
A Cabernet Sauvigonon blended with Sangiovese. It is described as having notes of crushed berries and barley, and is full-bodied with a fruity finish. 

So there is a short description of the five wines in the collection. I think they all sound intriguing, and it will be fun to try out the different food and wine pairings recommended. I'm also looking forward to trying out a bottle for our family Thanksgiving dinner tonight!

I'm interested to hear what types of wine everyone else enjoys! Let me know in the comments below.

xo Ashley

Watches

posted on: Sunday, September 27, 2015

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I've always thought watches were a great accessory, but I didn't realize how much I really needed a watch until I started my counselling internship. Now I'm really loving integrating watches into my work wardrobe each day. I think choosing different styles of watches can bring a new dimension of character to an outfit.  My newest watch is a wood watch by Jord, which was kindly sent to me to try out. I think it's such a unique style of watch, and a bit unexpected. I chose the Fieldcrest watch in Maple because I loved the look of the light natural colour of the wood and the graining, but I also thought that the Zebrawood looked amazing too (you can also see me wearing the watch in this post).

Do you wear a watch? What's your favourite accessory?

xo Ashley

Outfit Details
HM bag
Revlon Gel Envy Nail Polish in Get Lucky

Orange Lips for Fall

posted on: Thursday, September 24, 2015

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A couple weeks back the Fashion Magazine Beauty Panel was given the challenge to show how to wear orange for fall. I ended up coming up with a look, but did not get around to editing the photos in time. I decide I should probably post the photos anyway! I think that lipstick and nail polish are always fun ways to try out a colour trend. I also have a bit of a collection of orange lip products so I thought I would share some of my favourites. If you are intimidated by pure orange you can also go for an orange toned red lipstick or a peachy-orange colour. for this look I'm wearing the new Maybelline Colorblur Lip Pencil in Orange Ya Glad. The neat thing about this lipstick is that it has a smudger on one end so you can create an ombre effect. I attempted the ombre effect for this look but it ended up quite subtle. 


What do you think of orange lipstick?

xo Ashley

Happy Birthday

posted on: Wednesday, September 23, 2015

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September is my birthday month, and I could not wait to get my hands on the Sephora birthday gift from NARS. I literally rushed to Sephora right at the beginning of the month. The gift includes two of the NARS lip pencils. One satin pencil in the shade Rikugien described as a rose pink, and a matte pencil in Cruella, which is described as a scarlet red. These are perfect to carry with you in your purse and great to go from a day look to a night look. I also included some photos of the other NARS Satin Lip Pencil that I own in the shade Yu. This one is described as a vivid pink. I really love the formula of the matte lip pencils and the colours Red Square an Train Bleu are on my wish list. 

Did you grab the NARS birthday gift at Sephora this year? 

xo Ashley

Urban Decay | Naked Smoky Palette

posted on: Tuesday, September 22, 2015

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I recently received the Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette as a gift from a friend (thanks Karolina!), and I have been absolutely loving it! I think it has a great mix of browns, bronzes, greys, and purples, which means that there are so many different variations of a smoky eye that you can create with this palette. I've even worn some appropriate day looks with the shadows in this palette. Something that I really like is how the shadows are arranged in this palette and how all the matte shades are together. Another thing I'm loving is the packaging! I love the magnetic closure and the smoky effect pattern. I can't wait to start experimenting and creating endless smoky eye looks. 

Do you own the Naked Smoky Palette? Is there a palette you can't live without? 

xo Ashley