Wednesday, April 30, 2014

emma stone: love it or leave it?

Are you ready for another installment of love it or leave it? Then let's get started! Today's post is all about Emma Stone. In general, I am a massive fan of both her work and her style. She takes chances on the red carpet but always maintains an air of elegance and sophistication. At the premiere of The Amazing Spiderman 2, Emma definitely turned heads. Before I let you know whether I love it - or want to leave it - let's take a look at her red carpet look.

So, is it a love it or leave it? To start with, these are some of the things that I absolutely love.

What I Love:

I love this dress! No, really. I cannot get over how gorgeous this dress is - and how gorgeous it looks on Emma. It really suits her petite frame. The fit is just perfect. I love the delicate straps, the detailing along the top, and the sophisticated cut-outs on the side. The way the dress flows from form-fitting to loose and flowy makes the dress a total stunner. Instead of looking overwhelmed with fabric, the dress really lengthens her. So flattering! What else do I love? Emma's makeup. It isn't too dramatic or over the top, yet still manages to make a statement. I also love that lip colour on her. Gorgeous!

What I Loathe:

Honestly, there's nothing I totally can't stand about this look. However, I confess: I don't love her hair. To me, it looks far too voluminous to suit this sleek and sophisticated outfit. I would have preferred it to be straight or pulled back into an updo.

Overall, I have to say that this outfit is a love! Even though Emma's hair isn't my favourite style for this outfit, she still looks stunning and red carpet ready.

What do you think of Emma's premiere look? Love it or leave it?

xo Shannon

Monday, April 28, 2014

how wonderful yellow is. it stands for the sun.

Happy Monday! I can't believe it is the start of another week already. How did you spend your weekend? Mine was super busy. I did some work (okay, a lot of work! I was determined to cross some things off of my to-do list) and went to a birthday party for my boyfriend's uncle. Yes, it was definitely a jam-packed couple of days. Here is hoping the rest of the week is a little more...relaxing! Ready for today's blog post? It is all about yellow! Okay, and makeup. Here goes!

Spring is a time of colour. When the sun is shining and the flowers are in bloom, colour is everywhere. Even in our clothes and makeup! With that in mind, I picked up an eyeliner that was a little bit different. On a regular basis, I stick to neutral colours - especially when it comes to eyeliner. I love blacks, browns, and purples. But what about yellow?

That's right - I bought my very first yellow eyeliner.

I was browsing the shelves at Sephora and it caught my eye. I debated for a brief moment before deciding to take the plunge. It was time to step out of my comfort zone and really embrace colour. Enter, the Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Canary. It is a bright matte yellow shade - that knows how to make a statement. 

The liner was creamy and pigmented - and the perfect way to make a splash this spring. In fact, I loved the colour payoff so much, I have already created a wishlist for more colours. Mint Julep, here I come! 

So, how did I wear it? Instead of using it as a substitute to black liner, I chose to pair it with a classic black cat-eye for a look that was both wearable and fun. I am definitely excited about all the ways I can play around with this in the future. Here is a look at my Stila eyeliner in action:

If there is one thing I am trying to do this spring, it is get creative with my makeup...and colour is one exciting way to do just that. 

What do you think of this Stila eyeliner? What colours do you have in your makeup collection? 

xo Shannon

Saturday, April 26, 2014

repeat after me, "i deserve new shoes."

Shoes, shoes, shoes. It's amazing how a pair of shoes can totally change your outfit. Heck, they can even alter your mood! This is probably why there happen to be so many pairs in my closet. Flats, heels, sandals, sneakers....I don't discriminate.

Recently, I added yet another new pair to my wardrobe. With the spring weather in full swing, I could almost justify this pair. Almost. Why? They are totally gorgeous - oh, and totally perfect for spring, too! It's a pair of flats from Charles David. It is a pair of flats with a sophisticated pointed toe. While the sides are woven, the toe and heel are a beautiful coral shade. I absolutely love the fun use of colour!

Are you ready to take a peek at my latest shoe obsession? The wait is over! Here are my Charles David coral flats.

I definitely think these shoes are going to get some traction in the coming months. There is plenty in my closet that will go with these. I can't wait!

What do you think of these shoes? Do you have a favourite pair of shoes in your closet?

xo Shannon

Thursday, April 24, 2014

life is like a camera: focus on what's important.

Now that the snow has gone and the sunshine is here to stay, I've been doing my best to get out there and have some fun. Luckily, there have been a few special events lately. In the last few weeks, I've gone to on a double date, went to see Downton Abbey exhibit, and saw The Wanted in concert. It's definitely been nice!

Since these experiences have been so wonderful, I thought I would share some of my pictures and stories. To start with, here is a peek at the outfit and makeup I wore on a double date. My boyfriend and I went to dinner and to see Captain America with some friends. It was a lot of fun! I was inspired by the warm weather so I chose a blue striped maxi dress, a knitted shawl, and some loose curls. For makeup, I stuck with some pretty neutrals. (Thanks, Naked 3 palette!)

Next up was a Downton Abbey exhibit in Toronto. My mom and I went together - and it was a good day. We grabbed lunch, went shopping, looked at all of the Downton costumes, took a tour of the Spadina Museum, and went to dinner. It was a jam-packed day, but it was a lot of fun, too. Seeing the costumes in person was really cool. We are both huge fans of the show, so it was a memorable experience.

And lastly, The Wanted concert. My friend bought the tickets for my birthday and finally the concert date rolled around. I had been looking forward to this one for ages. It was a really fun night! My friend and I did a bit of shopping beforehand and then had a total blast at the concert. The opening acts were great and The Wanted was even better. It was so great to see them perform one more time.

So, that is a little peek at some of the more memorable moments lately. It's been really nice to have those fun days to kind of balance out everything else. I hope the rest of spring is just as wonderful!

What have you been up to lately?

xo Shannon

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

some days you just make me blush.

Review time!  In a recent haul post from Born Pretty, I showed off a blush palette that I ordered. Let me just tell you, it was love at first swatch. When I ordered this blush palette, I didn't exactly have high expectations. I mean, the entire set was $9! For such a low price, my only goal was to try out a few new shades. Then the palette arrived....and I fell head over heels for it. Why? Intense pigmentation, a wide range of colours, some totally unique shades, and a seriously silky texture.

I. Was. Shocked. Truly, I didn't expect the quality as high as it is. I mean, it's not NARS but it's pretty darn good! This was more of an I'll give it a whirl kind of purchase. Well, I am certainly glad that I did. Ready to find out more? Here goes.

Let's start with the packaging. It came in a surprisingly sturdy black case. Unfortunately, the case collects fingerprints like nothing else. It's not a huge deal, but it can be a little annoying. I hate when my makeup looks messy. The colours themselves, though, were gorgeous. There was a really nice variety - bright pinks, fuchsia, berry, orange, baby pink, and more. If you couldn't tell already, this is a set for someone who likes to be a little adventurous with their blush.

My favourite shade is either: the fourth one in on the top row or the fourth one on the bottom row. The first is a bright tangerine shade while the other is a dramatic pink. Both are gorgeous - but should probably be used sparingly.

These swatches will help you get a better feel for the colours....and help you pick out your own favourite!

And here is a picture of this blush palette in action:

As you can tell, I kind of love this set. There are so many gorgeous colours to play with! I am definitely a fan.

What do you think of these blush shades? Which one is your favourite?

xo Shannon

Sunday, April 20, 2014

bunnies are cuddly, the large and the small, but I like chocolate ones the best of all.

Happy Easter! Ahh, I love this time of year. This is a day that I've been looking forward to for weeks. As you probably know by now, I absolutely love holidays. They are a good excuse to spend time with family, relax, and remember the important things in life.

Easter is also a good excuse to eat plenty of chocolate, dye eggs, and watch Willy Wonka on a loop! This year, I plan on wearing my comfiest PJs, eating a chocolate bunny (or two), and hanging out with the family. I can't wait for this special day.

Whatever you're planning to do this year, I wish you all the very best. I hope the Easter Bunny is good to you!

How are you celebrating Easter? What is your favourite Easter candy? 

xo Shannon

Friday, April 18, 2014

spring is nature's way of saying, "let's party!"

It's crazy how quickly time is flying by. One second March was just beginning and now we are mid-way through April. Insane! I feel like I have completely lost track of time. This probably has to do with my crazy schedule lately. Everything has been piling up all at once. Work, home responsibilities, and a social much to juggle. There is light at the end of the tunnel, though.

Instead of letting the stress affect my life, I am staying positive and focusing on the things that inspire me. So, on that note! Here are some of the pictures that make me smile.

So, there you have it. Some of the pictures are are inspiring me right now.

Happy Good Friday! I hope you all find your inspiration today.

xo Shannon

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

new in: born pretty haul

Here's the thing: I just can't resist affordable makeup and accessories. A little while back, I was getting ready for bed...when I had this sudden urge to shop. This isn't something that happens to me often. But to curb the urge, I decided to do a little online window shopping.

Except my window shopping turned into a mini-haul from Born Pretty. Oops! What can I say - I can't walk away from a great deal! (No, seriously....everything cost me less than $30 and shipping was free.) So, what did I end up buying? 11 pairs of fake eyelashes, a lipstick, a shimmery pink eyeshadow, a cat claw ring, a fan brush, a small stipple brush, and a seriously amazing blush palette.

Let's take a closer look at everything....

11 pairs of false eyelashes. I haven't tried them yet but they look gorgeous!

A fan brush and a small stipple brush. So far, I am impressed with the quality. 
The bristles are really soft.

Shimmery shadow and lipstick. Love the shimmery loose powder but the lipstick is a dud. 
I found it really dry - but the colour is lovely. 

Cat claw ring. How cool is this? I can't wait to find the perfect outfit to wear it with!

10 blush shades....heaven! Blush is definitely my weakness, so this was the most
exciting purchase by far. Expect a full review in a later post! 

So, that is my late night shopping spree. Overall, I was really happy with everything I bought. The prices were fantastic and the quality was really great as well. I am definitely a fan! (You'll see just how much in my blush palette review post. Obsessed!)

Have you bought anything from Born Pretty before? What do you think of my mini-haul?

xo Shannon

Monday, April 14, 2014

style is a way of saying who you are without having to speak.

Spring is here. That means spring fashion....thank goodness! Now that the snow has melted and the temperatures are above freezing, I've been trying to get back into my groove. During the winter months, I confess: I fell into a serious fashion rut. It was all sweaters all the time. (Mostly because it was freezing cold out.) Now that the weather is improving, though, I've been reaching for some of the pieces I've been missing all winter long.

That feeling is what inspired this outfit post! I don't do a ton of outfit posts, because well, makeup is more my forte, but I was really happy with how these looks turned out. One was laid-back neutrals and the other was something super cutesy. You'll have to let me know which you like best.

Look #1: Laid Back Neutrals

 Top: Calvin Klein, Jeans: Joe Fresh, Earrings: Top Shop, Bracelet: Pandora.

Look #2: Cutesy Spring

Top: Jessica Simpson, Skirt: H&M, Sunglasses: Forever 21, Purse: Town Shoes.

What do you think of these outfits? Which one is your favourite?

xo Shannon

Saturday, April 12, 2014

spring is the time of plans and projects.

Spring is finally underway, which means there is no better time for me to talk about the Bare Minerals Beauty In Bloom set I have been using lately. In the past, I have always walked on by the Bare Minerals section in my local Sephora. It just wasn't a brand I gave much thought to. It wasn't until I was browsing the Sephora website that I started to pay attention. The Beauty In Bloom set immediately attracted me. Gorgeous spring colours and products to try out? Uh, yes please!

This set came with a variety of products (lips, cheeks, and eyes) for just $44 CDN. With seven items packed in this cute little box set, there was definitely plenty to try out. So, what actually was inside? It came with: two eyeshadow shades (Muse, a pink frosty shade, and Passion, a stunning plum colour), a super shimmery mineral eyeshadow (Nude Beach), a powder blush (a soft Nude Pink), a mineral blush (Rose Radiance), a lipstick (Marvelous Moxie, a pink shade), and a lipgloss (in Spark Plug).

Yes, there were a ton of amazing things to try out. I was so impressed with the quality and pigmentation of each and every product. To start with, let's look at the lips. The set included a pink lipstick and a gloss. Both were dusty rose shades, that are feminine, pretty, and totally perfect for spring!

Let me just say that I love the lipstick colour. It looks great and is really moisturizing on the lips. Such a nice spring shade. The size of the lipstick is great for travel, too. As for the lip gloss, I wasn't expecting to like it. This is just because I am super picky about glosses. I hate when they are sticky or tacky at all. This one was actually quite nice, though! It looks great layered over the lipstick or worn on its own. It has a great colour and a nice texture.

Next up are the blush shades. I absolutely love blushes of all different colours but have never tried a mineral one. So, that was pretty exciting! Here is a closer look at the two blush shades included in this set.

Both of these shades are really beautiful. They give a really natural looking flush to the cheeks. I love the quality, the texture, and the pigmentation. I was so so impressed with these! I find myself using the powder blush more often because I just love the colour. But the mineral blush is great as well (it has more of a peachy pink tone) because it adds a really pretty glow to the skin. As far as I'm concerned, both of these products are total winners!

And lastly in this set are the eyeshadow shades. There are three here...two powder and one mineral one. Here they are!

Out of everything in this set, the eyeshadows had to be my favourite products. The two powder shadows are just gorgeous. They have a really silky texture and the colours are just fantastic. In fact, the plum shade is one of my favourite eyeshadow shades of the moment. I find myself reaching for it constantly. It just looks so pretty on! But the stand out? The Nude Beach mineral eyeshadow. It is intensely pigmented and shimmery. It looks absolutely stunning on the inner corner or just swept all over the lid. Whenever I wear this, I feel like a million bucks. I only fear the day I run out of it! Love, love, love.

There you have it: my thoughts on the Bare Minerals Beauty In Bloom set. I have to say, this was money well spent. I am so thrilled with every aspect of this spring-themed makeup kit. I will definitely have to keep an eye out for more Bare Minerals products in the future.

What do you think of this set? Have you tried anything from Bare Minerals?

xo Shannon

Thursday, April 10, 2014

in the fashion industry, everything goes retro except the prices.

The great thing about stores like Forever 21? Super affordable accessories. You can find some cute ways to spruce up an outfit for $5-10. That makes it pretty easy to try out trendier pieces that don't necessarily have to last well, forever. The last time I placed an order with F21, I threw in a couple of cheap accessories on a whim. (If they weren't as cute as they looked, it wasn't a huge loss.) They were some midi-rings and a retro inspired headband.

I decided on the midi-rings simply because they were super cute. There came in a bundle and one of them even looks like a crown. Love! As for the headband, I have always been inspired by retro fashion. There is something about vintage accessories, like a bandana, that makes you feel strong and powerful. When these accessories arrived, I was pleasantly surprised by how great they were - the headband in particular.

Since I loved the headband so much, I decided to wear it for my latest face of the day look! I wanted something simple but pretty. I hope I managed to achieve that! So, here it face of the day featuring my new favourite accessory.

The products used to create this look were: Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette, Kat Von D Lock-It Tattoo Foundation, Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer, Blinc Cosmetics Liquid Liner, Benefit They're Real! Mascara, Hard Candy Baked Bronzer, L'Oreal Colour Whispers Gloss Balm.

When creating this makeup look, I wanted something that was a little retro inspired...but wasn't too dramatic or over the top. That is why I stuck with neutral shades on the lid and opted against a bright red lip. Overall, I'm happy with how it turned out!

What do you think of the accessories? Do you like this makeup look of the day?

xo Shannon

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

i love the way my skin looks when it's tan.

There are plenty of great drugstore brands out there. One that stands out to me is Hard Candy. While I'm not a fan of all their products (there have been a few misses for sure...) their baked blushes and bronzers are top notch. The pigmentation is beautiful and it adds a gorgeous glow to the skin. It's like a face product and highlight in one. Score!

Since I am such a fan of their makeup, I always pay attention when I see something new pop up at my local drugstore. Like, when I came across the So Baked Contour Trio. There were a few different shades to choose from. Some had a pink blush, bronzer, and highlight while others had a bronzer, deeper bronze shade, and a highlight. There was certainly plenty to choose from....which is why I struggled to choose the best one for me.

I ended up with the 3x a Charm featuring a highlight, contour, and bronze shade. (Which is pictured above.) For whatever reason, this one really stood out to me. I just loved the look of the shades! When I actually went to use the product I was very happy with my choice. This is such a handy trio. You can blend all of the colours together for a pretty shimmery cheek look or use them individually to shape and highlight to the face.

The pigmentation was lovely and there was plenty of beautiful shimmer, too. What I really love? The shades are versatile and can be worn in many different ways. Out of everything, the highlight is my favourite aspect of this trio. It just looks gorgeous on the skin! The swatches below will give you a better idea of what you can expect from 3x a Charm:

As far as I'm concerned, the So Baked Contour Trio from Hard Candy is a total winner. Why? It is affordable (the price is about $8 CDN), you get a ton of product, and there are plenty of ways that you can wear the different shades. Use it as a bronzer, contour set....whatever you like!

Without question, I am loving this - which is probably why I've been reaching for it so often lately. Pretty sure it is going to take an awful lot of willpower to stay away from the rest of this line. Only time will tell. In the meantime, here is a peek at the look I created using this trio. Let me know what you think!

Have you tried anything from Hard Candy? What do you think of this trio?

xo Shannon