HAIR TUTORIAL: Perfect beach waves

With beach days being a few weeks out here in Seattle (gosh, it just poured rain yesterday), why not bring the beach waves early? I’m excited to share this easy beach waves hair tutorial, whose look can be achieved using a hair curler and a few key prep and finishing products.

I specifically chose to use and highlight ABBA products for this post to align with my goal of trying to replace my existing beauty and haircare products with all natural* and/or parabens-free products. ABBA specializes in being 100% vegan, gluten-free and made without parabens, phathalates, synthetic colour additives, sulfates, and sodium chlorides.

hair tutorial: how to make the perfect beach waves via
Step 1: I started with freshly washed hair, sprayed with the ABBA Curl Prep Spray before hair drying. In his photo, the left side of the hair part has been curled with the perfect beach waves, and on the right is what my hair looked like after being dried but before being curled.

Step 2: To further encourage the curls, do a light spritz of the ABBA Prep Spray again on the dried hair, combing through from root to tip, before curling.

Step 3: Using a Cricket Ultra Smooth professional curling iron, wrap about a 2″ section of hair around the barrel, starting about 6″ from the root. Clip and hold the hair for about 10 seconds before releasing.

Step 4: As each layer of curls are finished, mist the ABBA Curl Finish Spray to help hold the shape of the curls.

The next two steps are optional, but definitely helpful for high-humidity cities like Seattle. I’ve had my curls completely frizz out in the past from humidity and it sucked! After putting time into doing my hair, the last thing I wanted was for a warm day to ruin the ‘do! Here’s a couple extra steps to help battle the humidity and keep those curls going strong for longer.


REVIEW: Scarology Scar Removal Kit

Scarology scar removal kit review

We’ve all been there before– having one of those moments while curling or straightening hair and accidentally burning ourselves with a hot tool, am I right? A few months ago, I accidentally burned my middle finger with the flat iron and was super bummed because this is the first time a burn has been severe enough to scar. The opportunity to try out Scarology could not have come at a better time and I’m excited to share today’s post because it’s one that’s been in the making for weeks.


REVIEW: Clarins Joli Rouge Brilliant lipstick

Gearing up for the Summertime means getting all of my wedding guest outfits ready! This year, I have 3 weddings to attend, so I’ll be trying my best to re-wear dresses that either already exist in my closet, or to only buy one new dress to wear to all. Aside from a dress, I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect lipstick to wear with it.

I am really excited to share my experience with the Clarins Joli Rouge Brilliant lipstick, as Clarins has released a new palette of colours for this season!

clarins joli rouge brilliant lipstick cherry review
My favourite colour is cherry, which is the perfect shade of classic red. I wore this lipstick out for a night on the town, applying it at 4pm and seeing how it would wear throughout the night.

Application & Moisturization
The application was flawless. In the past, I’ve had to apply a layer of lip balm before the lipstick (because my old lipstick was really de-moisturizing). With the Clarins Joli Rouge Brilliant lipstick, I applied it straight onto my lips with no primer or lip balm and it glided on smoothly!

I was most surprised by how moisturizing this lipstick is. The product description claims “6 hours of nonstop moisture”, which I feel is accurate. I first applied the lipstick at the start of the evening and purposely did not reapply for the rest of the night to see what would happen. My lips stayed moisturized the whole time, which was a stark different from my previous (non-Clarins) lipstick.

Staying power – pigment
Even though my lips stayed moisturized for the whole 6 hours, I felt like the pigment did not last as long. I applied two coats of the lipstick for the desired opacity at 4pm, and just over halfway through the evening it started to get a bit sheer. In the photo below, you can see that the full-on red pigment turned into a nice almost-tinted-lip-balm kind of look. Reapplication wouldn’t have hurt, but I didn’t mind the more subtle red later in the day.


Overall, I would highly recommend the Clarins Rouge Brilliant lipstick – especially the Cherry, Hibiscus, or Tea Rose colours – to anyone in the market for new lipstick. This is the most moisturizing lipstick I have ever owned and I absolutely love the spectrum of colours it comes in.

Disclosure: I received the 3 lipsticks courtesy of Clarins to review in this post. All opinions of the products themselves are my own. Hope you found this review to be useful and a huge thank you for your support of all the partnerships that make this blog possible!


REVIEW: Clarins multi-active face creams (day & night)

With the weather changing and needing to rethink my skincare routine, I’m partnered today with Clarins to talk about their multi-active face creams. My skincare for the winter consisted of washing my face, applying rosehip seed oil, and then calling it good! This worked well for the Winter because of how dry my skin would get overnight and it constantly needing to feel hydrated without over-hydrating to the point of having greasy pores. What hasn’t worked well is that my skin is changing again with this much warmer-than-usual Spring weather, so I was excited to try some new products out for the new season.

Clarins multi-active face cream day and night

I received the Multi-Active Day Cream and Multi-Active Night Cream to review. After using both of these daily for the last month, I’m excited to share what I’ve learned about myself and my skin.

My skincare routine didn’t change from what it was previously. Washing my face twice a day (once in the morning, and then again before bed) and following it up with either the day or night cream. Super simple! I tried my best to avoid wearing makeup for the last month, as well, to give the most accurate review of how my skin handled the cream.

clarins multi-active day cream review

The Multi-Active Day Cream was really attractive to me on paper because of the claims to help “fight the effects of daytime stress for glowing, healthy-looking skin”. While my eye bags reached zombie-level status last month, it had nothing to do with the cream’s performance. The day cream did exactly what it said it would do, providing me with healthy-looking skin on the daily. The subtle fragrance to this cream was also a nice surprise, since most creams made for sensitive skin are usually fragrance-free. I have never been one to buy a face cream for its scent (as I usually prefer them to be odorless), but I didn’t mind this scent at all. My skin also didn’t break out or show more redness than usual, so it was a win for the day cream!

Of the two creams, the Multi-Active Night Cream was the one I was most excited to try. My skin is most misbehaving during the evening; It tends to get very sensitive and dry while I toss and turn and is brutally honest in the mornings about whether or not it’s dehydrated and/or irritated. The Clarins night cream, while lighter compared to other night creams and the rosehip seed oil I was previously using, was not as hydrating as I had hoped for it to be. It felt really nice against my skin and absorbed quickly, but then my skin felt dry in the mornings.

Even after applying quite liberal amounts of cream on some evenings, I still felt that the night cream was not as moisturizing on its own. However, when paired with the day cream, my skin felt like it was getting 24 hour coverage on the moisturizing front.

All in all, I would recommend both of these creams if you’re looking to overhaul both your day and night creams. If you’re only looking to revamp one, my personal experience would lean towards a higher recommendation to the Multi-Active Day Cream.

Disclosure: I received both of these products from Clarins in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.


Rosehip Seed Oil in skincare routine


After checking out Pharmaca back in December of 2015 and being introduced to a handful of brands that specialize in 100% all natural products, I decided to take the plunge and try out some oils on my face. I’ve been waiting a bit to give an update on my winter skincare routine to try out a couple of products over a longer period of time to see what would work best with my skin. Based on what I was looking to achieve for my skin (even out the tone and deal with the dryness during the winter without looking too shiny), I was originally recommended this rosehip seed oil by Aura Cacia, but it was sold out in the store I visited.

Instead, I looked to find some other rosehip seed oil alternatives. Outside of Pharmaca, doing some research and reading lots of reviews online, I bought two and tested the effects of each of them on my skin. I picked up one that was a 100% pure rosehip seed oil, and another that had a mix of rosehip and other fatty oils that claimed to have similar benefits for the skin.

Nourish Organic Argan Face Serum Apricot + Rosehip
I started using this Nourish Organic Argan Face Serum Apricot + Rosehip because it was made by a brand that was recommended by the consultant at Pharmaca. It’s all natural and has a pleasantly light, sweet smell. The size of the bottle is perfect to bring in a carry-on bag when traveling, as well.

Using this oil first was a good introduction to the world of using oils. Having never used them before, I was a bit intimidated and felt like this was an easy way to dip my toes into the water. The pump on the bottle doesn’t allow for a lot of control for product dispensing, but one pump seemed to be the perfect amount for coverage on the face.

The oil itself is light and feels nice on the skin. It left my face with a bit of a shiny look to it for the first 15 minutes of application, but after soaking in, my skin looked normal again. I loved the fact that after only a few days of using it, I could already see the benefits of my skin making less natural oils and my skin wasn’t overly shiny or greasy at the end of the day.

After a month of using this product, I noticed that my skin was still a bit dry. I applied the oil once in the morning, and again at night before bed, which is how often I used to apply face cream. With this hiccup, I decided to try a pure rosehip seed oil to see if it would make a difference.

Radha Beauty Rosehip Oil
Looking for a 100% pure rosehip oil was easy through Amazon. With the thousands of raving reviews, I bought the Radha Beauty Rosehip Oil. Straight out of the gate, I loved that this bottle came with a eyedropper to control the amount of oil dispensed. What I don’t like is that there isn’t a smaller bottle option than the 4oz size and that the bottle is glass. Not exactly the most travel-friendly, but fine for on the counter top.

Similar to the apricot + rosehip serum, I trialed the pure rosehip oil for a month to see how my skin would react to it. One thing that was way different was the fact that the pure rosehip oil has a bit of an orange-red tint to it. Putting it on my skin on day 1 freaked me out a bit because I looked like I had jaundice! Thank goodness I did this at night before bed instead of first thing in the morning! The tint does go away as the oil is absorbed into the skin, so I would recommend applying it at least 15 minutes before bed to avoid tinting your pillows.

I find myself only moisturizing with this oil once a day (at night) because of the tinted colour of the oil itself that “stains” the skin until it’s absorbed. At first, I worried about my skin being too dry if I didn’t moisturize twice a day, but it’s worked out really well! My skin feels smooth, hydrated, and not shiny. The viscosity of this pure oil is visibly lighter than the previous serum, too.

all natural face skincare, rosehip seed oil

Overall, I’m really happy with the switch from using face creams to only rosehip seed oil! I’ve been using the Radha Beauty Rosehip Oil exclusively when at home. When traveling I’ll bring the Nourish Organic Argan Face Serum Apricot + Rosehip with a bottle of Yes to Cucumbers Daily Calming Moisturizer, since the Radha bottle is glass and not exactly the most travel-friendly.

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