Monday, October 27, 2014

The Final Reveal: My Clairol Makeover with Before & After pics

I was so excited when I arrived at Hair on the Avenue for my #shiftashade makeover. I've always loved learning about beauty and fashion, and this day represented not only the chance to learn from Canada's top experts, but also the opportunity to have their advice tailored specifically for me...I felt like a celebrity!

My first meeting was with Clairol Consulting Colourist, Luis Pacheco. I explained how my hair was a combination of highlights (that I loved) and an accidental ombre which left me with yellow streaks and dried-out ends! With Luis' amazing reputation and coloring expertise, I felt confident that he could rescue my hair. He suggested applying Clairol Nice 'n Easy in 5N/118A (a natural medium brown) on top of my existing color. (Click here for $2-off Clairol Nice 'n Easy.) Because it's a long-lasting permanent hair color, it covered my bleached-out strands. The expert blend of 3 complementary tones per box ensured that my hair color remained multi-dimensional rather than flat. As for my yellow streaks and dried-out ends? Luis recommended using a colour-safe shampoo to retain my medium brown colour. I've replaced my regular conditioner with the Nice 'n Easy CC ColorSeal Cream included in the dye kit, leaving my hair glossy and soft.


With my hair dilemma solved, I went upstairs for my consultation with Pro Makeup Artist Patrick Rahme. Hanging out with Patrick is a beauty blogger's dream come true; from peeking through his kit to see which products make the cut, to learning new tricks and techniques, Patrick has a wealth of knowledge and he shares it generously!

My main makeup concern was how to make my lips look fuller while wearing bright lip colors. Patrick advised me to choose creamy lipsticks (especially those with moisturizing ingredients such as Vitamin E), as they will ensure that my lips look bright AND glossy. To offset my bright lips, Patrick did not use any blush or bronzer on my face. Instead, he added subtle dimension using different shades of powder foundation. A lighter shade was used to highlight and a darker shade was used to contour. Because they're foundation powders, they're very pigmented and the results are long-lasting. I've been trying to implement some of his tips at home!


My final consultation was with Stylist Extraordinaire Alexandra Melancon. I wanted to learn how to dress up my jeans. I think Alexandra understood my style a little TOO well: compare my final picture with  this outfit—scarily similar, huh? Of course, being a fashion expert, Alexandra has some tweaks that went further than my usual styling attempts, from getting my jean cuffs just right to perfecting the half-tuck of my shirt, her attention to detail was amazing! One lesson I plan on incorporating is purchasing more heeled booties to wear with my jeans—they're easier to walk in than regular heels, and they instantly make jeans look more classy!


I'm SO happy with my #shiftashade makeover. Each change was subtle yet impactful, so I still look like myself! I feel confident now that I’m armed with tips and tricks to improve my overall look; I’m ready to face a new season. Check out my makeover from start to finish over here:

Go bolder. Go warmer. Go deeper. Go golder. With our broadest spectrum of natural looking shades, you can change it up and still look like your most amazing you. Get inspired and #shiftashade. Nice n' Easy with Colour-blend Technology is available in 44 shades. For more information visit*

Disclosure: This post was brought to you by Procter & Gamble via Glam Media Canada. The bloggers were compensated for the Clairol Shift A Shade campaign and were asked to review our products. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Procter & Gamble.

Linking up with More Pieces of Me and On the Daily Express.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Fall Essentials: The Plaid Blanket Scarf

ZARA Camel Plaid Blanket Scarf Dupe
Scarf: Forever21 (identical), Blazer: H&M (similar), Boots: Old Navy (similar), Bag: Balenciaga Lips: Lady Danger

With temperatures dropping, it's definitely 'scarf and boots' weather now. I thought it would be fun to post a series of my Fall Essentials, starting with the Plaid Blanket Scarf. These over-sized scarves became popular last winter - with everyone trying to track down the infamous ZARA camel blanket scarf (posted about here). It's no surprise that Plaid Blanket Scarves continue to be popular this fall - the cheerful print combined with voluminous material make them ideal for keeping you warm and cozy in the colder months...what's not to love?

Although I missed out on the ZARA original, I was very happy to find this brightly-colored alternative at Forever21 last January. It's no longer available - but I've found a lot of VERY similar pieces at ASOS - see below!

Tartan Blanket Scarf
1. Grey Check / 2. Grey Plaid / 3. Square Check / 4. Camel Check

A quick mirror pic of my outfit:

ZARA Camel Plaid Blanket Scarf Dupe
Scarf: Forever21 (identical), Blazer: H&M (similar), Boots: Old Navy (similar), Bag: Balenciaga

Here are my top scarf-tying tips: How to Wear Scarves. And in case you're looking for plaid shirts rather than plaid scarves, check out my latest post for Yummy Mummy Club here!

Joe Fresh / J.Crew Factory / Old Navy / Garage / LOFT

Linking up with More Pieces of Me and On the Daily Express.

P.S. If you're looking to take your blog to the next level - be sure to sign up for Spark Sessions! I attended last year and learned so much about working with brands and improving my photography skills.

 Photo credit for 1st photo: Elaine 

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Fall Make-Up Tutorial: Berry Lips & Double Winged Cat Eye

This tutorial features a Parisian-inspired makeup look that's perfect for fall. It takes a seasonal staple - Berry Lips - and pairs it with Shimmery Shadow and a Double Winged Cat Eye for added drama. To ensure long-lasting results, I'll be using products from Revlon's Colorstay line. Want to recreate the look? I'll be giving away all the products mentioned below to one lucky reader! Follow along, it's easy - there are only 4 steps:

Step 1- Shimmery Shadow: Apply Petal all over the lid, use Greige to define the crease and outer corner of the eye. Optional: Wet your brush to increase intensity.

Step 2 - Double Wing & Bold Lashes: Glide Colorstay Skinny Liquid Liner across the lashline, winging it out at the ends. Angle the liner brush at the corner of the eye and draw on a second wing. Curl lashes and coat with Bold Lacquer Mascara. (I'm LOVING this mascara - it has a dry formula, which easily creates volumized smoky lashes.)

Step 3 - Pouty Berry Lips: Dab ColorStay Moisture Stain in Parisian Passion on lips. Bonus Tip: Apply a shimmery eyeshadow (like Petal) on the center of lips to add dimension and make them look fuller. (Revlon lip products are always amazing. This Moisture Stain is so light - I can't even feel it on my lips. And when the gloss wears off - it leaves behind the prettiest stain!)

Step 4 - Chic Black & White Manicure: Finish off the look with a super-shiny gel manicure - use Blackjack polish, with Sure Thing applied as an accent nail. Optional: slip on a midi ring for a bit of sparkle! (Probably one of the best gel polishes I've tried - I've had glossy chip-free nails for a week!)

If you would like to win a Paris-inspired box of Revlon makeup products, head over to my Instagram: like this photo & comment below it confirming that you have a Canadian mailing address. One follower will be selected. RULES: To be eligible to win this prize you must: 1) follow me on Instagram, 2) be over 18 years old, 3) Reside in Canada. Contest ends on October 11 - check back here to see who won!

UPDATE (12/10/2014 - Winner is @retr0philiac)

What is your favourite Fall Make-Up Trend?

DISCLAIMER: Revlon sent me the products pictured above to use in this tutorial.

Linking up with More Pieces of Me and On the Daily Express.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Carousel Necklace & Sundial Key Pendant from Pink Lovebird Boutique

I was recently contacted by Pink Lovebird Boutique - they asked if I wanted to try any of their statement necklaces. I chose 2 necklaces - the Carousel Necklace:

Coach Pink Saffiano Wallet

And the Sundial Key Pendant (currently out of stock):

Aren't they both so beautiful? I've been wearing them non-stop: when I want to add a burst of colour, I wear the Carousel necklace:

Dress: H&M (similar, pricey but classic), Necklace: Pink Lovebird, Bag: Pashli

Trench: Old Navy (similar), Bag: Minkoff, Shoes: Wanted (similar), Necklace: Pink Lovebird

And when I want to add a touch of sparkle, I wear the Sundial Key Pendant:

Shirt: ZARA (similar), Jeans: GAP, Shoes: Old Navy (similar), Bag: Pashli

If you're based in Canada - I'd definitely recommend checking out Pink Lovebird Boutique - they're reasonably priced (between $25-$50), amazing quality (no loose stones or discoloured metal) AND they have free shipping within Canada! Plus, if you use the code ELLA10, you get 10% off your order! One of their hottest items is this Duchess Crystal Necklace - similar to the one Kate Middleton wore here.

Which of these 2 necklaces would you wear the most?

DISCLAIMER: Necklaces were provided by the boutique - but I truly love them and selected the styles myself.

Linking up with More Pieces of Me and On the Daily Express.


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