Tag Archives: hair

5 Things That Made My Week

Happy Monday, darlings!  Who’s ready for a beautiful week of sun and fun?  I know I am!  In preparation for that, here are my five highlights for the past week:

  1. My new hair products:  Blonde locks means a more rigorous care regimen, so I’ve picked up some of the good stuff – John Frieda’s Sheer Blonde shampoo and conditioner.  I saw Lauren Conrad using it on a hair tutorial, and I trust her taste in blonde maintenance, so I got the Everlasting Blonde line.  I also got some John Frieda Frizz Ease serum (that’s been a classic since the 90s).  I find that I do need to heat style a bit more now, or else my natural waves end up looking a bit like a glam metal singer, and this serum has smoothed and softened my hair amazingly.
  2. Pedicures:  A little while back, Nick’s mom came to town and we had a fabulous girls day – my first ever, actually!  One of the fun activities was going for a pedicure at Nino D’Arena in Erin Mills Town Centre.  It was my first salon pedi in 10 years, and it was amazing!  I felt so pampered, and my toes left looking super pretty!  It’s been almost 2 full weeks, and my sweet little pink toenails are still looking good as new!  If you’re ever in the area, I’d highly recommend checking them out.
  3. My little Bath & Body Works treats:  Part of the shopping trip was a visit to Bath & Body Works, one of my favourite stores.  I left with a few items, including the cutest little travel hand sanitizer (in Pink Grapefruit Pop scent), as well as an amazing little hand cream for my purse, Vanilla Buttercream.  It smells and looks like frosting, and I love it!
  4. Scoop neck t-shirts:  A basic tee is always good to have on hand, and easy to make work in all occasions.  A basic scoop neck tee that’s nicely fitted is better.  I picked up a couple of these at Wal-mart (yes, really!), and have been loving styling them up and down, plus the pink colour is perfect!
  5. Luke Bryan music:  I’ve always liked country music, but recently I’ve been enjoying it a lot more – something about summertime and generally clean lyrics.  So I’ve been spinning lots of Luke Bryan this week while I’m working, doing chores around the house, and in the car, and it makes me smile.

So fun!  Go ahead, pamper yourself, and turn up some fun tunes this week!



5 Things That Are Making My Week

Bonjour, mes belles!  Hello and welcome to another fun (and blonder) installment of 5 Things That Are Making My Week.  Here’s this week’s Top 5, starting off big with a whole new look for moi!

  1. My blonde hair!  Of course, the biggest cosmetic change of my entire life.  I’ve always wondered how I’d look as a blonde, and I LOVE it!  I think I might have been an inner blonde all along, so this is very fun right now for me, and I feel pretty!  It still feels so different, but it’s really given me a new lease on life, as well as an added boost of confidence.
  2. My shell & circle drop earrings:  I received these earrings as part of a gift set years ago.  Recently, I’ve been wearing them almost every day (I tend to repeat accessories a lot), and the slight shimmer and hint of seaside beauty feels very feminine and delicate.  It makes me think of mermaids and beach vacations.
  3. Sweet Kale Superfood Salad:  I was first introduced to this delicious salad by Nick’s mom, and it’s become a dinner staple for me at home.  Everything is prepped, chopped, and fresh, and it’s so tasty and healthy!  It’s got kale, broccoli, brussels sprouts, pumpkin seeds, a delicious dressing – in short, yum.
  4. Homemade Lavender Linen Spray:  A simple mix in a small spray bottle, (1-2 tbsp rubbing alcohol, 10 drops lavender essential oil, and then water to fill), lightly spritzed all over the sheets, pillow and blanket just before getting into bed.  It’s great for freshening up the linens, and the lavender scent is a beautiful natural relaxing scent to help with sleep.
  5. NYX Stick Blush:  I have the Tulip shade, a nice natural pink.  The blush leaves a rosy glow on my cheeks that not only lasts all day, but that I can also have control over the placement.  For lazy makeup days, I just dab a bit on my lips and I’m set 🙂

I hope you enjoy these little bullet points.  It’s been a fun, fresh week, and I’ve got a fun, fresh new look!  I’ll keep finding out if blondes have more fun, but it’s looking like they might 🙂

What’s making your summer sweet?  New foods, a new look?  I can’t wait to hear what it is for you!

Easy Curls for a Hint of Polish

Happy Monday, friends!  I hope your week is off to a beautiful start 🙂

Today I’ll be sharing a hairstyle that I’ve started doing recently.  Now bear in mind, I do not have very much experience with a curling iron.  I spent most of my childhood and tween years with pin-straight hair that I would try to curl and wave using sponge curlers (it never worked), and then around age 14-15 my hair decided to go curly – which is when I started to play with the straightening iron.  Isn’t it funny how we seem to always want to change the way it is naturally?

Happily, my curls loosened into pretty loose mermaid waves over time, and so now I barely ever do anything to my hair.  With the length and the fact that it is a thick mane with a lot of hair, more than 95% of the time I wash it, add a bit of serum or sea salt spray, and leave it be.  Very occasionally I will straighten it, and I had pretty much never used a curling iron myself until recently.  I figure many ladies spend a lot of time perfecting undone bedhead waves, so I just embrace the natural look.

However, even with that I still wanted to change it up every so often – especially with all the pretty Pinterest tutorials out there.  So without much more rambling, I’ll show you how I very easily (and/or lazily) curl my hair when I want a more polished, defined curl. Keep in mind this is best for if you have a lot of stubborn hair, like me.  Check out the video below, and I’ve also written out the steps.

  1. Using a wide toothed comb or brush, gently brush out dry hair.
  2. Section hair into 6-8 sections for curling.
  3. Take one of the sections, spray with water, and comb again.
  4. Curl the hair on the curling iron away from the face.  Hold in place once all rolled up for 45-60 seconds.
  5. Gently release the curling iron, and use a bobby pin to hold the curl in place.
  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 with all the sections.
  7. Once all curled up, mist lightly all over with hairspray.  Allow all curls to cool and spray to set.
  8. Carefully take out the bobby pins, shake out your tresses, and mist again with hairspray.  All done!

And there you have it!  Simple easy curls for lazy girls with thick wavy hair.  I was playing with my hair over the holidays when I discovered this method, and it’s worked for me everytime!

How do you like to style your hair?  Do you usually work on it, or just let it do its thing?


No Heat Curls

Hello, beautiful readers!  I’m going to talk about a fantastically easy hair tutorial (easy hairstyles, yay!)  It’s the glorious No-Heat Curls that have been rocking the Pinterest world for a while now – seriously, I went back to clean up my pins, and had pinned 5 totally different tutorials for this exact same thing.  And yes, I’m weird in that I go back through my pins and clean them out.

My favourite one is found here,  and it’s got a video done by the lovely Autumn of Playing House Full Time – which is also the first blog I ever got hooked on, go check it out!  You’ll fall in love with her sweet style, and adorable family.  Also, the picture of her taken from the back here is what made me fall for and try this hairstyle.

I had a bit of a conundrum.  My hair is naturally curly, which I love.  However, I liked to wear my clip-in extensions as well, which are straight.  I wanted an easy way to get some curls into my hair and the extensions.  And it had to be easy and fast, since I have a ridiculous head of hair that would take over an hour to do with a curling iron.  I’m also growing my hair out, so no-heat sounded much healthier for my hair.

Basically, I do my hair straight after washing, which takes about 15 minutes, and then put in my extensions.  Then I follow the video, put on my headband and loop my hair through, lightly misting my hair with water in a spray bottle as I go.  Believe me, I’ve tried it with too-wet hair, and it’s poodle land, and fully dry the curls fall out quickly.  I’ve seen tutorials where you would twist the hair before looping it, but I just wanted nice big loose curls.  Once my hair is setting, I sleep on it.

In the morning, I just take out the headband and gently finger comb the curls.  I’m thinking some hairspray after would be good to give the curls a bit of extra hold, but not essential.

The picture at the top is of my hair pre-weave, but check out how it looked when I did it with my weave in – now I don’t even straighten, just mist and set, and I love how it looks!
Also, another quick tip – don’t use the non-slip grip headbands.  I made that mistake the first time, and it got all messed up and tangled, and took me almost an hour to detangle.  Just use the normal cheapo headbands and you’ll be fine.  Pretty bouncy curls, whee!

Have you tried this?  Let me know what you think!

A Tale of a Mane

For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted long hair.  Technically, my hair is long, but I mean I want long, like Eve in the Garden of Eden hair cascading down my back, or like a brunette version of Princess Ariel or Princess Aurora’s hair.  Chalk it up to Disney, Barbie, or whatever other girly cliche you’d like, but the ideal self I’ve always envisioned had a head graced with gorgeous, long, flowing locks.  As a little girl, of course, my mother would certainly not allow me to go that long without a haircut, so right now it’s the longest it’s ever been – ugh.  Add to that the fact that my hair has always had ridiculously slow growth, and you’ve got a good case of Rapunzel-desire syndrome.

When I was a mere 8 years old, I remember hearing about these things called extensions, where a hair stylist can sew hair into yours and make your hair long, and this stuck with me.  I’ve toyed with extensions throughout the years since I was 17, going to beauty supply shops and making my own clip-in extensions, but I always wanted to get permanent ones, the kind where I can treat it like my own hair, and wash it, and style it as well.  What complicated things were when my curls came in, because my extensions were straight, and I wanted my hair to all look nice and natural.  Here’s a picture of me with straight hair and my first set clip-ins, way back in high school (oh yes, that is a selfie in the mirror and I am wearing the necklace from Lord of the Rings):

Those were cute, but like I said, a lot of work.  Well, I finally took the plunge.  I went in and got extensions professionally done at a salon.  I wanted weave extensions right from the start, because I like that they don’t require any sort of chemicals or adhesives, and they’re easier on the wallet too.  I got mine done at the lovely Urban Textures Salon downtown, where such ladies as Miss Universe have gotten their hair done.  The whole experience was fabulous, right from the consultation, to the actual hair appointment.

Upon arriving, the salon is adorned in warm neutrals, and soothing R&B music is playing.  I was sat down in a nice comfy chair.  Since I had washed my hair that morning, we got right to the extensions.  My stylist was Tina, and she did a great job.  Once my extensions were in,she did a cut on them to blend and create pretty layers, and then styled it.  This creates a natural, gradual look to them, instead of a huge change in length from my natural hair to the finished style.  The hair was top-notch quality, custom matched to my natural colour, and they even had wavy hair available, which made me really happy.

This is me before:  Here, I’m “in progress”, so the extensions are in but not trimmed, I like to call this the Lion Mane (rawr):And now after, with the curls she styled it in:

And now with my own natural wavy look (my personal favourite):

What do you think?  I love it!  I finally have the hair of my dreams, and I have been stroking it and loving it and tousling it, and whipping my hair back and forth pretty much since I left the salon – whee!  I’ve also gotten a lot of compliments on it, even from total strangers.  Yeah, I’ve been basically acting like a little kid, and re-enacting the famous Little Mermaid hair flip a little bit too..

Talk to me, ladies – what do you like having done to your hair?  Or, are you trying something new for summer?

(Ariel Hair Flip from Oh My Disney at http://blogs.disney.com/oh-my-disney/2013/03/18/the-way-we-loved-the-little-mermaid/?cmp=SMC|blgomd|OMD-March|Pin|LittleMermaid-Ariel|InHouse|031813|Text||esocialmedia|||)

Easy Breezy Blowout

Around this time last year, the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, was all over the magazines.  And for good reason.  She is an icon of modern elegance, poise, and class, with an approachable nature that endears her to most people.  And she’s a princess now, meaning she is the fairytale come to life of a common girl capturing the heart of a prince, and achieving her happy ending.  It was like a new British invasion, everyone wanted her wardrobe!  Her shoes!  Her wedding details!  Her honeymoon!  And of course – her hair.  Kate’s classic bouncy blowout became all the rage.  Sooo pretty!

I’m not Kate, but I can show you how to do a basic blowout.  Now, I realize hers has nicely curled ends, but I have naturally curly hair, so when I do a blowout, I want it straight and sleek all the way through, but without losing all the volume.Start with wet/damp hair.  Detangle using a wide-toothed comb.

Work a small amount of smoothing product into your hair.  I personally like Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Express Blow Dry Milk, available at any drugstore.  It has keratin, the natural substance that makes up your hair, and I’ve found it significantly reduces my drying time and sleekness, while also protecting my strands.Now, blow dry hair in 2 sections.  Sweep up the top half of your hair, and dry the bottom half well, pointing the nozzle down.

Next, flip the top half over your face and blow dry that way, this will create nice volume at the crown.

Once hair is mostly dry, flip to how it should sit for blowdrying finishing touches. (Tip: lift the top layer and gently blow dry the strands down, this will smooth down the varying lengths and tame a good part of the frizzies without using extra product)

To finish the style, run ends and top layer of hair through a straightening iron.

Use a small amount of finishing shine product, especially near roots and on ends, to give hair extra gloss and sleekness. My favourite is Satinique’s Brilliant Polish, because it’s very light and non-greasy.

And that’s it!  For a girl like me, with a lot of thick crazy curly hair, it takes me about 15 minutes start to finish, 20 if I’m being fussy and want to get it just perfect.  This is a great everyday polished look, also works great for a situation like a job interview or meeting, since it looks sleek and professional.

Do you have quick, pretty hairstyles you like to do?  Let me know in the comments!

(Photo of Kate Middleton from Radiant Salon at http://radiantsalon.co.uk/blog/?p=3109)

BB Naturals

So, a little while ago, I decided to try and hop onboard the natural beauty products trend.  I’m not really even remotely close to the brown paper packaged, raw-looking cosmetics found in health food stores, Ayurvedic products, and the like.  I usually delight in fun packaging, bright pops of colourful plastic, and “exclusive revolutionary formulas” that sound like they were created in a NASA lab somewhere.  But I had heard enough about the dangers of sulfates and parabens and other things that I don’t know what they are, so I figured it couldn’t hurt to try and go more natural.  I decided to try a line of body & hair products called Body Blends Naturals.  The design and marketing was cute enough, and it boasted its products being at least 93% all-natural.  They are paraben-free, phalate-free, sulfate-free, and even gluten-free (sidenote: why is there gluten in beauty products?  I don’t know).  They were great!

The line is all bamboo and green tea extract based, so it smells nice, but the scent is still neutral enough that it won’t interfere with fragrances you may wear.  This was important to me, since I wear some sort of EDT or EDP pretty much every day.  The formulas also boast shea butter (moisturizer extraordinaire), and organic aloe vera (which soothes skin naturally).

The body wash is a gel that sudses up really well, and is even perfect for shaving my legs.  Not too drenching in moisture, but the lotion is all you need for that.

The body lotion is honestly more like a rich cream, almost body butter-ish in its thickness.  It covers really well and makes my skin feel all silky!  It’s actually thick and rich enough to stand up to Canadian winter, which I was pleasantly surprised by.

And then there were the hair products.  I tend to be picky about these, because I’ve been growing my hair out since forever, and it sometimes has a mind of its own.  The shampoo was nice, lathers up well, and rinses very clean.  To be honest, I don’t usually look for too much in shampoo – I want it to clean well, since I use styling product, and to smell pretty, but not overpowering.  Check.  But the conditioner?  I loooove this conditioner!  My hair is naturally curly (read: a sponge for moisture, and sops it up like a camel in the Sahara, which can leave me looking like Medusa/poodle/lion’s mane), so it needs a good conditioner.  This one is almost as thick as the lotion, it feels more like a mask!  It detangles my hair in no time, and left it the softest it has been in years – yes, years.  It also gave my hair a nice sheen without weighing it down, so it has become one of those products I tend to gush about.

Here’s a picture of the bottles for the whole set.

I’ve included a pic below, it’s from a wine tour Nick and I did, and it does show how healthy my hair looks.

The best part about these products?  They offer the benefits I mentioned, and at a sweet price.  They’re all available here, and the price ranges from $14-$16 for two bottles!  This line has really been a great find, and one I’m happy to share with you guys.  Have you hopped on the natural beauty product bandwagon?  Found any great cold-weather products?  Let me know 🙂

(Photo credit for BBN pics: http://www.amway.ca/)