Tuesday, February 26, 2013

20% discount from eShakti!!!

Here's a quick blog post to give you guys an amazing offer from eShakti - the website that brought you that beautiful love owl dress back in a January blog post!

From February 26th to March 10th 2013, type this special discount code PRLPNKBETY in the promotional code box when checking out, and you will receive 20% off your order! What a great opportunity to get a brand new dress for the spring weather that is right around the corner!!

Code has to be entered in the 'Promotional Code' box. No Minimum Order Value. The discount code is not case sensitive. The code can be used any number of times until the validity period. This code can be clubbed with any other gift coupon or gift card in the same order. This discount code is not applicable on our Overstock category. Not applicable on previous purchases. 

Just in case you missed the first blog post, eShakti offers both design and fit customization for women size 0 through 36. So you can order a size 10 dress or you can send them your exact measurements and they'll make a dress specifically for your body! You can also change the neckline, sleeves, etc, and make it your own. Their dresses are great comfortable, excellent quality, and best of all - affordable!

What are you waiting for? Go order now!!


You're welcome!! :)

Monday, February 25, 2013

How to: Get rid of blemishes naturally using tea tree oil

I HAVE to share this beauty secret with you guys because I absolutely swear by it and I don't think there are many out there who really know about it. Best of all, its natural

I have very oily skin that's very prone to break outs so I have frequently have to deal with big painful blemishes on my chin mostly, and other parts of my face! Just 2 days before wedding day I had a huge bump on my chin that was extremely red. My aunt Charmaine suggested I try tea tree oil on it and gave me a bottle to try out. I've never heard of it but was willing to try anything to bring it down a little. On Thursday night I applied the product, and when I got up the next morning the bump had gone down half in size and the redness was dramatically reduced. I repeated the process on Friday night (before my wedding) and the blemish was almost completely gone on for my big day - what was left was easily covered with some concealer and foundation!

Here's a few FAQ's on Tea Tree Oil.

Commonly used as treatment for:
  • Acne
  • Athlete's Foot
  • Colds & flus
  • Dandruff
  • Burns & cuts
  • Lice
  • Eczema
  • Psoriasis
According to Wikipedia, Tea tree oil is taken from the leaves of the Melaleuca Alternifolia which is native to New South Wales, Australia (my favorite place in the world)! Please check out the link to read more :)

Why go natural? Why not! Tea tree oil may take a little longer to work but its side effects are much less than using benzoyl peroxide that can cause itching, stinging, burning and dryness to the area. Besides, who wants to be putting chemically processed gels and creams on your face when you can do it with a natural product? Personally, I would much prefer the natural way! 

Now for the disclaimer: I'm no doctor or dermatologist, and I'm sure some people who have severe acne would not find this method effective (although as far as I can read online, there is success!!) but for me this works! Tea tree oil is a great acne spot treatment and I continue to have positive results from it for almost 3 years. I am not sure how there could possibly be an issue with using a natural product to treat a medical condition but please use this method at your own discretion. Also, I don't use tea tree oil every single time I get a pimple - often I will just let them run their course. But if I'm going to a makeup gig, getting my picture taken, or going to a function, I'll start the process a few days before and I'm guaranteed clear pimple free skin for that day.

I am not sure where my aunt got this bottle, or how much it costs but I am still using the bottle of Thursday Plantation she gave me in 2010. So the small bottle goes a long way. I know The Body Shop also sells it and I'm sure you can find it in stores that sell natural products as well. This is what my bottle looks like:


To apply, I wash my face with my regular cleanser, and douse a clean q-tip with with the product. Then I gently roll it on my problem area(s), put a clean towel down on my pillow and go to sleep. This product does have a very strong odor and you don't want the oil to get on your pillow case so I recommend using the towel. The next morning I just splash my face with cold water to rinse it off, pat dry, moisturize, and continue with my makeup routine.

If you're interested in spot treating blemishes naturally, I highly recommend this method. It may not work for you but there's a chance it will!! Please make sure to let me know if this was a success or a fail for you. Remember to be patient - some people find it does take a little longer to work (although I see results over night) but your skin will be thankful!

THANK YOU CHARMAINE FOR THIS AMAZING BEAUTY TIP!!! XOXOXO

Much Love and cheers to a blemish free face!
April
xo

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Review: Rimmel Lasting Finish 25 Hour Foundation

Looking for a great drugstore foundation? Look no further...


Rimmel Lasting Finish 25 Hour Foundation!!
I swear by Revlon Colourstay...I have bought it time and time again for many years. I've tried other drugstore foundations but always went back to my Colourstay. I have read rave reviews on Makeup Alley about Rimmel's Lasting Finish 25 Hour Foundation and I needed to stock up on foundation for my upcoming summer weddings (since I can no longer get the Sally Hansen Airbrush foundation here where I live) so I decided to get one for myself first to see how I liked it. It seemed like the perfect foundation for weddings - long lasting, full coverage, lightweight and affordable for my kit. I would have used Colourstay for clients but the range of colours and the dry/oily skin formula for each shade would have costed me a fortune!

This bottle is 1 fluid ounce (which is the normal amount of foundation bottles) and ranges from $6.99 to $10.99 depending on the sale at the time. The bottle is an upside down squeeze tube which isn't the greatest format and its hard to control how much comes out but that's not a huge deal for me. The formula is a great consistency - not too watery and not too thick. It has a faint perfume scent at first but doesn't seem to linger for too long. 

The foundation itself spreads very nicely over the face with fingers, a beauty blender, sponge, and with a flat top brush (I've tried all 4 and my personal preference is a flat top brush as gives me an airbrushed look). A little of this product goes a long way and 1 coat covers all my redness, uneven skintone, break outs, under eye circles, and imperfections without concealer. Sometimes I'll give my chin a thin 2nd coat if I'm having a big breakout and it does not get cakey. The finish of this is amazing - for the first time I feel like I don't need a powder as it dries into a beautiful matte finish. But since I have oily skin I applied my Marcell Loose Powder in my t-zone and it looked great! 

Now for the staying power - WOW!! This did not move from my face all morning, afternoon or evening and when I wiped my makeup off before I went to bed the cleansing wipe was full of foundation! The only other foundation I found this with was Revlon Colourstay so I was impressed! Another miracle was I did not get oily for the entire day - no powder touch up and no blotting and my face was still matte before I went to bed. Unfortunately, Revlon Colourstay kept me unoily for quite some time but I had to touch up my nose and forehead in evening. The Rimmel foundation also was transfer resistant - it did not transfer on my scarf, coat or phone (the most common areas for me). Finally, this foundation did not turn orange, or dry out my skin either!

So just as I suspected, this was a perfect bride foundation! I saw a sale and stocked up on a bunch of different shades. One downfall is that there isn't a huge variety of shades but I plan to mix the shades to make a perfect colour for each individual client if necessary. There's also no SPF in this foundation which could cause problems for some but this was key for me when looking for a wedding foundation. SPF doesn't photograph well and tends to wash out so it was important for me to find something that was camera friendly as well as long lasting.

No review is complete without a picture, right? This is the beauty world and you have to see it for yourself. So I did a before and after to complete my review. As you can see in the top picture, I have some discolouration, chin breakouts, and dark under eye area. In the bottom picture, all that has completely disappeared and my face is completely even and 1 colour (I did not use any concealer)!!! I contoured my face in the after picture and put on blush as well because I don't like going without both but you get the idea :). Here's the picture:


PLEASE NOTE THESE PHOTOS ARE COMPLETELY UNEDITED!

Now before you run out and buy this, or even look for it I have some disappointing news. The Shoppers Drug Mart cosmetician told me they are discontinuing this product. I have no idea why, if its true, when or if Rimmel are replacing it with a similar foundation but it may be hard to find especially in this city. I've stocked up for myself and for clients so I'm good for a while. If you find it, match your shade and stock up! If Rimmel does come out with a similar product I will gladly let you know and do a blog post about it! In the meantime if I could recommend another affordable drugstore foundation it would be Revlon Colourstay (which I can do a review on in a later blog post).

Thanks for reading!

Much Love,
April
xo

Friday, February 22, 2013

Curvy Girl Fashion - Tee + Blazer + Jeans

This is a pretty classic look that's been done a million times but never seems to go out of style. Curvy girls can rock the jeans, tee and blazer look too! You've seen this blazer before with red jeans, and a striped top but today I wore it with a pair of regular flared leg jeans from Bluenotes, a cream tee from the Gap (printed with a big tree and birds), and camel booties from Payless. I love this printed tee - it gives the outfit a little character but doesn't make it too overpowering. My husband actually gave me this for Christmas a couple of years ago (he's a great shopper...I'm a lucky wife). The blazer dresses the outfit up a little bit and the jeans keep it casual.



As always, I hope this inspired you! Thanks for reading :)

Much Love,
April
xo

Friday, February 15, 2013

Curvy Girl Fashion - Lace Dress + Denim Jacket

Happy Friday everyone! Its time for a new Curvy Girl fashion post :)

This look was inspired by a combination of outfits I pinned on Pinterest. I was originally looking for a cream lace dress but when Forever 21+ posted a peach lace dress I fell in love and had to get it! Its not visible in this picture, but the dress has a high rounded neck, unlined short sleeves, and a high back with full zipper. It fits great, its very flattering, and can be easily dressed up or down. Best of all, its appropriate - the neck line and length are not revealing. This dress is sold out on the website but I believe it was under $30!! For a casual Friday at work, I paired it with my Steve Madden riding boots, and a denim jacket from Old Navy. My jewelry was just my Guess watch and a colourful long owl necklace.


Denim jackets never seem to go out of style (if they do, its never for very long) so this is a great piece for any wardrobe when you style it right! I know this look is a little country-ish and its a little out of my comfort zone, but I really liked it when I put it together! 

I hope this outfit inspired you! Please comment and subscribe to my blog if you would like to see more outfits and beauty related posts.

Before I go, today I am very excited to announce that myself and my cute little Owl Love Dress are featured on the eShakti website under the section where they show real people (not models) in their beautiful pieces! Please see it here!! Thanks eShakti :) <3

Much Love,
April
xo

Saturday, February 9, 2013

How to: fill in eyebrows using the Urban Decay Brow Box (With Pictures!)

I was never blessed with gorgeous eyebrows and I was an excessive eyebrow plucker when I was younger. I kept plucking the insides next to my nose and eventually it passed the point where its suppose to start (which is vertically parallel to the outside your nostril. Get a makeup brush and line it up next to your nose!) and my eyebrow kept getting shorter in length. I shamefully sported those eyebrows for quite some time before growing them back in toward my nose. I decided it was time to put down the tweezers because as a person who applies makeup on other people, I thought it was very important to "look the part" with nice eyebrows. In addition, having defined eyebrows frames your face and completes your any makeup look from natural to dramatic.

Quitting sounds easy right? Not for some people and definitely not for me. I like my eyebrows to be neat so not being able to pluck those little hairs growing back pretty much killed me. When they finally filled in, the hairs grew the opposite way (pointing toward my nose) and were completely unruly during the whole process! Once they grew out, I had to "train" them to go outward with the rest of my brows and they are finally normal again (took about 2 months or so). They are, by no means, perfect but they are much better than they were! They are still thin but unfortunately years of plucking have made them permanently on the thin side so there isn't much I can do for that except purchase a product to fill them in every day. Now it was time to watch YouTube videos by my favorite beauty gurus to see their eyebrow routine. I took a little bit from every video (mostly from MissChievous and NikkieTutorials) and created my own routine  based on my features.

I was using using MAC's "Espresso" eyeshadow and an angled brush to fill in my eyebrows for years and that was working fine but I wanted an actual brow product. After much research and testing, I finally decided on the Urban Decay Brow Box in Brown Sugar! Its a little steep at $32 but let me tell you its well worth the money!

I want to share with you the steps I take on filling in my eyebrows using this product. Here's what it looks like:



What you'll need:
  • Regular eyebrow pencil
  • Small flat angled brush
  • Synthetic flat brush
  • Spoolie
  • Urban Decay Brow Box 
  • Clear Mascara (used as a brow gel)
  • Q-Tip
  • Concealer (optional)
I first brush out my eyebrows with a spoolie from the inside out.




















Then I take a synthetic flat brush, dip it into the wax section of the Brow Box and place it on my eyebrows to flatten down the hair. You can use this to set your brows but I like using it before the powder so colour from the powder doesn't transfer onto the clear wax. Keep reading to see what I use to set my brows.




































Next I take a very sharpe GOSH Eyebrow Pencil (I love GOSH pencils...they are very comparable to high end IMO) and start drawing a line from the inside at the top of the eyebrow moving outward. This is the step where I create my eyebrow arch. I repeat the line on the bottom of my eyebrow as well making sure I stay on the outside edge. For those with thinner eyebrows it may be difficult but the trick is to make sure your pencil is sharp -  anything out of place can be fixed with a Q-Tip later!

















I then use a small flat angled brush (this is from Crown Brush. I don't use the one in the Brow Box...I find it way too small and hard to work with) and the lighter shade in the Brow Box and lightly fill in my eyebrows using quick light strokes on the inside of the brow. When I get to the arch, I switch the angle of my hand and draw a straight line outward as a "tail". 



I take that same brush and the darker shade in the Brow Box and with a light hand go over where I laid down the eyebrow pencil on the outsides of my eyebrow. This will define your eyebrows a little more and set the pencil for a long lasting stay - you can certainly skip this step if you don't feel its necessary for you. REMEMBER: Your eyebrows are suppose to be sisters, not twins. Don't waste time trying to get them symmetrical but get them as close as you can!





















Don't panic...you're not done yet! Your eyebrows will look a bit crazy at this point but we are going to fix it! Take your spoolie (this is also from Crown Brush) and lightly brush all the product through your eyebrows. This will blend everything together and soften it. This step is VERY important! 





















Now, this is my trick. Well, I'm sure this is used by millions of other people but I discovered it on my own. Get a new Q-Tip and just gently go over the area below and above my eyebrow. This cleans up any messy lines and gives it a crisp look.





















Finally, take a clear brow gel (I use Maybelline Great Lash Mascara in Clear) and set everything. You can use the spoolie to brush through your brows again if it feels like a little too much was applied.





















OPTIONAL TRICK: Get a concealer (I like MAC Studio Finish Concealer) and a sharp concealer brush, and go over where you cleaned up with the Q-Tip. Draw a line right along the top of your eyebrow and push the concealer outward to blend. You can repeat this on the bottom of your eyebrow as well but I usually let my brow highlight eyeshadow do the work for the bottom.

And there you have it! Filled in eyebrows :)

Here's a Before & After Pic:


DISCLAIMER: There are many different ways & products to fill in your eyebrows and this is my routine. Please use these steps as a guide or modify them to fit your own personal needs. The beauty community is a big world and there are many different ways to apply eyeshadow, lipstick, foundation, etc so if you have a different way of doing it...fill yer boots (as we say in Newfoundland)!

Stay tuned for a detailed review of the Urban Decay Brow Box (probably posted tomorrow).

Much Love,
April
xo

Friday, February 8, 2013

Curvy Girl Fashion - Coloured Jeans + Blazer

I am back with another outfit! I got a package from Forever 21 on Monday and everything I got fit like a glove - especially my new blazer! I've been wanting a blazer for a while but could not find one I loved. Even though I couldn't try this on before I bought, it I knew it was perfect! Its black, lined inside, has shoulder pads to give it some great structure at the top, and its very comfortable! My favorite part is the tiny clasp at the front that cinches it perfectly at the smallest part of my waist (I learned that from Stacy and Clinton!) for a very flattering fit! It doesn't have a collar but I think that's what gives it character and makes it look a little bit more modern.

I paired it with a black and white dolman top from Forever 21+, brick red denim jeans from Bluenotes, and a pair of black mid calf boots (which you can't really see in the picture but I have my skinny jeans down over the boots). For jewlery I just wore an anchor necklace, my Guess watch, and a turquoise stone ring I got on eBay. I still don't have access to my husbands DSLR so here's another iPhone mirror picture:


If you are interested in this blazer, its still on the Forever 21+ website here for a very affordable price of $35.80! I hope you like this outfit as much as I do - I was so comfortable all day!

I am currently trying out a few makeup products to review for my blog so keep an eye out for them very soon!

Much Love,
April
xo

Monday, February 4, 2013

Curvy Girl Fashion - Business Casual Work Outfit

Hello all my beautiful followers! I've been getting a lot of blog hits and new followers over the last little while so I just want to say welcome...and thanks for stopping by!! I just hit 13,000 blog views!

Sorry I was a MIA the last couple of weeks - I was feeling uninspired and having a touch of the winter blues. But as I'm sure you all know, a little retail therapy cures all!! I got a lot of great pieces and I can't wait to show them to you guys!

I am back in the groove and I wanted to show you what I wore to work today. A lot of my sweet co-workers (and a bunch of girls in grade 1. They are the sweetest!) told me they liked my outfit today so I decided to take a picture for my blog. I didn't have my husband or his camera when I got home so you'll have to settle for an iPhone picture.


























The wide leg black dress pants are from Old Navy and they are seriously the most flattering and comfortable dress pants I own. I have multiple pairs of the black and grey I love them so much! The white blazer is from Bootlegger - its a beautiful soft cotton blend instead of the traditional blazer material so its really comfortable and light! When I found this I was actually looking for a white cardigan and came across this on the sale rack for $24.99. The sleeves roll up 3/4 length and have a striped print on the cuff! I'm very happy with this find, as you can tell. Anyway, Bootlegger had an additional sale - when you bought one item, you got a 2nd for $1 so I got the floral strapless top I'm wearing underneath for just a buck! For jewellery I just wore my heart key necklace from Old Navy and my Guess watch. Finally, for shoes I just wore some black pointy toe heels.

Thank you for reading. I hope this inspires you :)

Much Love,
April
xo