Friday, August 30, 2013

Campus Chic: 7 Everyday Items

For some of you, school may have already started. Last year was my first year at university and it was definitely quite the experience. After spending one year away at school, I realized that there are some things I cannot live without. I found myself reaching for these items everyday on campus. I've compiled a small list with seven items that I loved and used everyday. Hopefully some of these find their way into your bookbag!

  • Computer: If you're like me, you live on it. Recently I picked up a MacBook Pro and I can confidently say that it has been the best decision I have ever made. It's great for taking quick notes in class, recording a lecture or even making up a presentation. Although they can be quite expensive, they are worth the investment. You don't need to own a MacBook! HP, Dell and Toshiba make excellent computers with a variety of options that are sure to suit your needs! Always go to your local computer store and ask them what they think is best for you. 
  • Agenda (Louis Vuitton Medium Ring): Keep track of your everyday schedule by writing it down. While modern technology makes it possible to sync everything up, I find appointments and dates stick better in my head when I actually write them down. Lilly Pulitzer makes some amazing planners as well as Victorias Secret. If you're looking for an even cheaper option, check the dollar store or your local Wal-Mart. I prefer planners that are leather bound with pockets because I am a keeper of all little things. The LV Monogram agenda above fits perfectly inside my Speedy 30!
  • Book Bag (Michael Kors Medium Jet Set Tote): The main goal when it comes to a book bag, is comfort. Look for something that is easy to carry but still manages to hold all your items. A bag that sits over your shoulder can be both stylish and convenient. If you're looking for something to hold heavier textbooks, consider a backpack with proper support. 
  • Watch: This is kind of an odd object to add to the list, but for me it was a lifesaver. While I'm able to grab my phone and take a quick glance, there are times when a watch is just that much better. Plus, I'm a huge watch fanatic so any day that I get to adorn my wrist with something new is great. 
  • Spiral Ring Notebook: While you're able to take notes on a computer, sometimes it's just easier to write them down. Look for a spiral ring notebook that allows for pages to be turned with ease. This makes writing more comfortable. Hilroy makes cheap subject notebooks that can usually be found on sale. 
  • Travel Mug: For those early morning classes. A cup of coffee stays that much warmer when it's sitting in an insulated travel mug. Careful when bringing them to lectures, some professors prefer no food and drink in lecture halls. 
  • Computer Case: Kind of a no brainer! A nice computer deserves a nice place to rest. Marc Jacobs makes my favourite cases that are easy to carry and fit inside most bags and backpacks. 
Those are just a few of the items that you can see me with around campus! Hopefully all of you have an excellent school year and I wish you all the best! 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Something New!

I've decided to hop onto the MacBook bandwagon! Yesterday, I purchased by 13 inch MacBook Pro and I honestly couldn't be happier! You have no idea how long I've wanted one of these!

So my question to you is what kind of case would you recommend?

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A Guide to Pearly Whites

White teeth are something that everyone strives to have. They make any person ten times more confident in their smile. As someone who is super anal about her teeth, I like to ensure that I always have the brightest and whitest smile possible. 

I've been using the above routine for a while now and I've found that it really works well and keeps my teeth as white as I like them to be. Plus, all of the products are available from your drugstore!

My everyday toothpaste is Crest 3D White Luxe in Glamorous White. It has a refreshing minty flavour and is said to brighten after just one use. I find that claim a little bit over the top, but it will make your smile sparkle after one use. With regular use (2 times day), I noticed a whiter smile after just one week. You can find it at your drug store (mine is Shoppers Drug Mart) for $5.99. I pick mine up whenever they go on sale! 

Whitening treatments at your dentist can sometimes be expensive. I find that these Creat 3D White Whitestrips give me dentist results at home! They are on the pricey side, $80 for the Professional Effects shown above but in my books they are worth every penny. Plus, you don't need to to purchase them often. The Whitestrips are applied two times a day for 30 minutes. These ones are really sticky when applied and I find that I can even drink water with them on. After you take the strips off, the instructions say not to brush immediately. I find it's best to do these midday when I have some time in between classes. 

A brighter and whiter smile isn't something that is unattainable. With regular dental care and brushing, you can have a movie star smile in a few weeks. These are definitely just some of the many products that are out there that work for me. If there's any other products that you love for keeping your smile white, let me know!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

How To: Making Your Mani Last

It's happened to all of us, you decide on a colour, sit down and spend 30 minutes painting your nails to perfection. You follow all the manicure rules: a basecoat, the colour, and a topcoat. You let your nails dry and go on with your day. When suddenly, your polish chips. If you're like me, you lose it a little bit. All that time and effort and your polish is ruined just like that. 

These are some of the tips and tricks that I use to ensure that my manicure lasts me the entire week. I like to put my nails through some rough stuff, and this method ensures that my manicure remains (as I like to say) compliment worthy! 

Before you even begin to paint your nails, you're going to need a great base. This starts with a healthy nail. One of my go to products for quicker growth and strengthening of my nails is OPIs Nail Envy. Nail Envy comes in a variety of different types. Pick which best suits your nail problems. Nail Envy works best when in direct contact with the nail. The instructions say to apply 2 coats of Nail Envy on the first day and then one coat of the product every other day. After one week, remove the product and start over if you wish. I prefer to use the Nail Envy on it's own and let my nails have a little rest during the week. 

If you want to skip the regrowth and strengthening part and get straight to the manicure, then this is for you. These little buffers are essential in the longevity of your manicure. I picked up these from Target for $3.99. One side has a slight buffing surface while the back side has a shiny surface. On a clean nail, buff the surface using the blue side until your nail is slightly rough. This will help the polish stick to the base of your nail without the use of a basecoat. It is crucial that you do not use a nail file to buff your nails. You will ruin their surface and cause more problems than necessary! 

Next up is painting your nails! Pick your favourite colour, or colours and follow the instructions below to get the perfect flawless colour: 
  1. Start by placing a dot of colour along the bottom part of your nail.
  2. Drag the colour up the center of your nail to the tip, ensuring that the entire middle of your nail is covered with polish. 
  3. Continue from the bottom up the right side of the nail.
  4. Ensure that the polish covers the entire right side of your nail up to the tip. 
  5. Repeat these steps for the left side of your nail. 
  6. A completed nail should be fully covered in polish. If needed, apply 2-3 additional coats until the polish is to your liking. 

If you're like me and you're completely unable to wait for your nails to dry completely, these little drops will be a lifesaver. Essence's Nail Art Express Dry Drops are available for $2.99 at Shoppers Drug Marts in Canada or ULTA in the United States. One drop applied to the nail after they are freshly painted dries them instantly! 

Finish up by applying your favourite top coat. Mine happens to be Seche Vite Dry Fast. It's a great gel like formula that dries in seconds and is pretty resistant to anything. I like to apply a large amount on each of my fingers so that it's pretty thick. The product leaves your nails super shiny and covered.

And that's how you give yourself a manicure that will last the entire week! These are pretty much anything proof. The key in a long lasting manicure is really the base. I've found that buffing my nails makes all the difference in the world. The polish sinks into the nail and the rough surface helps the adhesion. Definitely give these tips a try if you're looking for a flawless mani! 

P.S. Let me know how these tips work for you! Show me your fancy manicures!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Things I Love: Sequined Minis

Review: Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Beauty Balm

With summer rapidly approaching it's end, I decided to let everyone in on my skins little lifesaver! I decided at the beginning of this summer, that I was going to completely rid traditional foundation from my makeup bag for good. I hate the feeling of having something extra on my face when I really don't need it. After doing some extensive research of my own, I settled on a BB cream. 

BB cream is essentially an all in one face product that aims to replace multiple products from your makeup bag. These include a primer, moisturizer, sunscreen, and foundation. These wonder creams originated in Germany in the 1960s and in the 1980s, became a huge product in Asian markets. The beginning of this year marked their introduction into our drugstores!

Maybelline's Dream Fresh BB "Beauty Balm" is the only BB formula that I've tried. It's a lightweight, sheer cover liquid that goes on like a dream. It comes in 5 shades ranging from light to deep. I myself have fair skin and find the light/medium tint works best. I apply the product on my forehead, nose, cheeks and chin and rub in with my fingers. For me, this BB works best on bare skin underneath my powder, blush and bronzer. 

One of the biggest things that I loved about this product was the SPF 30. It's a great way to introduce an SPF into your arsenal without having to think about putting sunscreen on your face every single day. It lasts all day when set with a powder and won't make your skin oily like a traditional sunscreen. Just be sure to reapply this product after you've gone swimming or spent the day at the beach. 

All in all, for a drugstore BB, I have no complaints. The price is right at around $8.99 per bottle and one bottle lasts me quite some time. I wouldn't recommend this product for those who wish to have full coverage on their face as it's pretty sheer. Maybelline Dream Fresh BB can be found in Canada at Shoppers Drug Mart, Rexall, Wal-Mart and pretty much any major chain store!

Have any of you tried a BB cream? Do you like them? Also, have you tried an Asian BB cream? If so, any recommendations for a brand? I'd love to try one! 

P.S. The colour I'm wearing on my nails is a new find! Sally Hansen's Pink Blink! I'm a fan! A little more pink and opaque than Essie's Fiji!