Years ago, I can remember a time where I had thick, thick hair. Hair so thick that I hated it (I was twelve. I didn’t know better). Fast forward to a few years ago, somehow my hair became pretty thin. I’m really not sure why it happened, but I remember one morning, I was doing my hair and I suddenly realize that my hair was much thinner that it had been in years previous. My assumption is that it has to do with hormonal changes, which is what changed my hair from a frizzy mess into actual curls and waves when I was about thirteen, but I can’t be sure. All I know is that my hair is not as big as I want it to be. That’s not to say that I am looking for big, Hairspray-esque hair (though, that would be kind of awesome on occasion), I just want to bring life back to my hair and give it a bit of oomph. Whenever I am buying new hair products, I am always looking for the words “lift”, “volume”, anything that promises it take my hair from drab to fab. So, when my friend Lita mentioned back in her “Summer Favs” post that she was loving Bb’s Thickening Serum, I rushed to over to Sephora to get some. That first week, I used it every other day, because I don’t wash my hair every day and thought it would leave my hair greasy. I used it off and on for the next few months, often forgetting it for a week or two, and didn’t think I was seeing any changes. Then around the middle of December, I decided I’d try using it every single night and see if it would make a difference. As long as I was only using one or two pumps, it didn’t make my hair oily. I actually noticed that it was making my hair fuller, even thicker. It fell underneath my bed a week or two ago, and I totally forgot about it. And my hair noticed. Now, of course the results aren’t so drastic that I wake up with completely different hair in the morning, but it definitely is noticeable to me, and I think it gets better the more you use it. Also, because you’re only using a few pumps every night (obviously depending on the length of your hair), it will last quite a while, which is always a bonus when you’re dishing out a lot of money on these good quality hair products.
I have been waiting all month (okay, all of January, since it now February) to post my favourites of the month. I loved talking about my 2014 favourites, so I really wanted to make monthly favourites a thing this year. When it came down to it, there were actually only a few things that I have been loving that I haven’t talked about yet. I want to keep each monthly favourites as fresh as possible so I’m not going on about the same stuff each month, so these posts will likely be pretty simple for the most part. But simple is good. That means less typing for my little fingers.
Let’s get started, shall we?
Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Fresh & Foamy Body Wash. A few months ago, while watching Essie Button’s YouTube channel, I was reminded about this awesome brand. I used to use their products years ago, but for some reason stopped. As soon as I picked these up, I was reminded why I used to love them so. First, the smell. This one in particular smells of lime, and all things sweet. It reminds me a lot of a lime sherbet that I used to have one I was younger (I think it was the Safeway Select brand). This body wash is definitely fresh and foamy. Because it’s not a gel, I find it to be more moisturizing on my skin and it lathers into more a creamy texture rather than just bubbles. So good.
Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Body Buttercream. Same scent as the body wash, which I love (I love layering my scent when I can). This has is more of a whipped body butter, which is just lovely first thing in the morning. I don’t think the scent lasts all day, but for the first few hours, it’s perfect.
Fresh Sugar Lip Polish. I mentioned a bit ago that one of my goals for 2015 is to wear more lipstick. I have been keeping up on that goal, wearing lipstick at least three times a week, sometimes everyday, depending on my mood that day. Because I have been layering on the lipstick and gloss each day, my lips have been desperate for some exfoliation, and this stuff does the trick. First, it smells delightful. It does a great job of getting rid of the dead skin, but it doesn’t leave my lips raw. Instead my lips are left feeling soft and ready for more.
Essie Penny Talk. I passed by this one a few months ago, but this last month, I picked it up because I really didn’t have anything like it in my collection (quite unusual). It’s a really pretty colour, slightly duo-chrome, either copper or rose gold looking depending on the light. Perfect for when you want a polish that will stand out but is a change of pace from the usual reds or berries worn around this time of year.
Prada Candy Perfume Rollerball. I have never been a perfume girl, but I decided last year that I wanted to start using perfume. After smelling what felt like a million different ones, I found some that I really love. One of them was this guy. I bought the rollerball in order to save some money, and felt like it was better as a stepping stone into the world of perfume. If you love sweet smelling things, which I do, this is the perfect scent. It really does smell like candy.
White Collar (not pictured). The first week of January was my last week before I started back at school. I was getting over a really bad cold/cough, so I spent the entire week hanging out at home watching White Collar. And yes, I finished all six seasons in one week. What can I say? Neal Caffrey is a charmer. If you need a new show, I highly recommend this one. But be prepared to become obsessed. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
I find that day to day, even week to week, I am a creature of habit when it comes to my makeup. Of course my base is always the same, but even though I have a lot of eyeshadows and mascaras to play around with, I generally find something that works one day and continue it for a while until I feel the need to switch it up. So, starting today, I thought I would start sharing what I’ve been using on the (almost) daily.
Revlon Grow Luscious Mascara (001 Blackest Black). I purchased this a month or two ago, when my lashes were growing back from falling out due to allergies and the wrong makeup remover (this was before I discovered Boscia’s Makeup Breakup Cleansing Oil), and wanted a simple mascara that would just give me good lashes. And that it does. I’m not sure if I can give this credit for the full lashes I have had all month (seriously amazing for me), but I can give it credit for the effect is has on giving my lashes the length and volume that I crave.
Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer (Brightener). Because everyone (and I mean everyone) in the beauty blogger world raves about this guy, I picked one up a few months ago and have been using it ever since. It’s not too thick that it gets cakey, but it’s not too thin that it doesn’t cover anything. I only use this for under the eyes, as the pinky shade isn’t ideal for covering blemishes. It also is good as a highlighter, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Urban Decay Basics Palette. This tiny little palette packs quite the punch. It is deceivingly simple, which is what I love about it. If I didn’t have the desire to own everything, I could be quite happy with this one. Because of the spectrum of colour, though neutral, this can easily go from a barely there to a dark smokey eye in a pinch. Simply delightful.
Benefit Cosmetics Longwear Powder Shadow in Thanks A Latte. A think I bought this last year, maybe. But after I bought it, I thought it was too dark, and didn’t use it. Until this month. I wasted a year of not using it, and I’m pretty sad about that. Described as a “golden brown”, this is just perfect. Of course the formulation is beautiful. Great colour payoff, a hint of shimmer, and little to no fall out — a dream come true.
Flower Beauty Raise Some ‘Brows Defining Brow Pencil in Dark Brown. This month I ventured into filling in my brows for the first time in my life. Before investing in a more high end product, I thought I would dip my toe in the pool of eyebrow pencils with a drugstore brand first (does anyone else do that?). I especially like using this when I am wearing a bold lip, because I feel like it evens out the colours on my face, if that makes sense. I still have a lot to learn when it comes to the ‘brow department though, so I am looking forward to testing out some new products as the year goes on.
Urban Decay All-Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray. I love using this as my last step of my daily makeup routine. Not only does it feel nice on the skin, it helps to smooth things out on days when I’m a little powder happy, or if the powder I’m using is not setting properly. I also feel like this guy is going to last me forever. I’ve used it nearly everyday for the last two months and I’m pretty sure it’s not even half empty. Great for only spending $15!
Nars Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base. When I ran out of my original Urban Decay eyeshadow primer (I do still have the champagne coloured one, Sin), I thought I’d check out what Nars had to offer, since the lovely Anna from Vivianna Does Makeup swears by it, and I certainly trust her opinion. So far, I have really liked it. I’m not sure if I like it more than Urban Decay, but I’m pretty sure I don’t like it less. It definitely gives my eyeshadow a good base, aiding in blend-ability, and it definitely keeps it from disappearing or creasing, which is all we really want, isn’t it?
Rimmel Stay Matte Long-Lasting Pressed Powder. I had to go to three different stores to find this one (I wanted Translucent, and everyone seemed to be out of it every time I checked), but it was so worth the wait. The powder I was using before I picked this one up wasn’t really doing it for me, so I decided to get this one after hearing great reviews from many different sources. For a product that is under $10, this does wonders. It doesn’t keep my face shine free for an entire day, but it doesn’t set my base makeup beautifully without a hint of being cakey, so that is definitely worth the very small price tag. It is also great on reapplication, which is also wonderful to see.
Stay tuned for my next post when I discuss my January Favourites. I hope you all have a lovely weekend!
On my ride home from school on the bus today, I was reminded of an experience I had years ago. I was staying at my sister’s house, and had gone out for a run because at the time, she lived by some great pathways. I started my run, and planned out my route in my head, figuring it would go a certain way. As I went up one street, I realized too late that this was in fact a major hill. From further back, it just seemed slightly steep, but nothing to worry about. But the further I got, the more I realized it was something to worry about. At this time in my life, I was pretty fit, so I actually made it up the hill unscathed. There have been other times where the same thing has happened and I have made it to the end, and others where I have given up because either my legs or my lungs just couldn’t take it.
There have been a few times in my life where I have been given a task that seemed doable from a distance. I couldn’t see the difficulties that would arise, nor could I have guessed that there would be moments along the path that I would find it impossible to continue. During some of those moments, I have persevered, knowing that the act of “running up that hill” would lead to me something greater, and in the end make me stronger. But, just like those times when I gave up the run on the hill, I have given up on tasks in life because they were too difficult at the time, and I was too weak in my present state to continue.
I am running back up one of those hills right now, and it is not an easy one to face. Once again, from far away, even after experiencing it and giving up, I thought it couldn’t be that hard. But as I get further along the path, I’m realizing that the weaknesses that I dealt with before are still there, even if I am even just the slightest bit stronger now. I guess that’s the important thing that I’m learning. Weaknesses don’t just disappear when you refuse to acknowledge them. Weaknesses can only become strengths when you put them to the test and overcome them. Definitely easier said then done, I know that. But, with as much MacLean grit as I can muster, I am going to get up that hill. Just one step at a time.
As with many things, my taste in music seems to change almost daily. Many days I find myself craving certain tunes, or am unable to stop listening to ones I’ve newly discovered. Starting with today’s post, I thought I would share the songs I’ve been loving each month, partly to share some goodness, but mostly just because I love lists.
2. “The Sound of Silence”, Simon & Garfunkel
3. “Animal”, Miike Snow
4. “Halls”, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness
5. “Fair Verona”, Dan Mangan
6. “Night Fever”, The Bee Gees
7. “You’re the One that I Want”, Lo-Fang
8. “Black Sun”, Death Cab for Cutie
9. “Money On My Mind”, Sam Smith
10. “Cute Without the ‘E’ (Cut from the Team)”, Taking Back Sunday
What songs have been your most played list this week? What songs can you not go a day without?
I love bright colours as much as the next girl (let’s be real, it’s definitely more), but there are times when neutral is what’s needed. After weeks of bright reds, glitters, and the like, my nails were ready for something a little understated. As I’ve been loving the grey I’ve been rocking this week, I thought I would share my favourites for the perfect neutral nail.
I just love the sophistication of a grey or nude nail and the fact that I don’t have to think twice about what colours might be clashing with my polish. Ahh, I just love these.
When it comes to trends, I am not usually one to dive in. I either scoff at it, thinking it’s unnecessary, or wait to see how it turns out. I’m always wary of hyped up things, especially books and tv shows. My husband would say it’s because I’m a hipster and only like things that no one else has heard of. But I think it harkens back to the days when I was discovering music on my own, and found these discoveries to be my own little secret, made only for me.
Then there are times when after years and years, I cave and dive right in. This weekend was such an occasion. After everyone, including my own mother, was enamoured with Downton Abbey, I decided to give it a try. Honestly, it has been on my Netflix list for at least a year. Now I’m sad I’ve put off watching it for so long. It was probably because I knew I would love it and wouldn’t be able to stop watching it once I started. Of course, that was the truth. I’m nearly finished with the third season now (please, no spoilers!) and am loving it. Perhaps I won’t turn my nose up at popular things so much anymore.