Wednesday, September 24, 2008


That's all I can say today.
It's been way too long since I posted and I can only apologize. I have no excuse except that I've been super-busy at work, I have a cold, and I'm caught up in excitement for my birthday. I'm going to be honest and tell you postings are going to be a bit slim around here until the end of the month. Bear with me please.

Hope you're all well!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Cop This: Kardinal Offishall Not 4 Sale

Hey y'all,
I know this is a beauty blog, but sometimes - not often - there are some things more important than makeup. Or so I hear anyway. Either way, it's my blog and I'll stray off topic if I want to, right?

That being said, consider this a PSA: Kardinal Offishall's latest album hit stores on Tuesday.

Buy. this. album. Now.

If you don't know who Kardinal is, you're either living under a rock or you're not Canadian. Either way, you need this in your life:

Kardinal is an extremely gifted artist and producer who is blazing a trail for Canadian artists and has been for years. The man was on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno this week, for goodness sake. That is absolutely unprecedented for a Canadian hip hop artist and no one deserves it more. Check the video and tell me you weren't doing the Dangerous dance in your chair:

Dangerous Jay Leno Live

And in case you're wondering, this is not a case of me shamelessly plugging something just because I know and/or like the artist - I have no connection to Kardi save a youthful crush and you ought to know by now I get crushes like other people get subway transfers. So this is my completely non-partisan opinion: Buy this album and do your part to support Canadian music. You won't be sorry. The album is hot.

Oh yeah - the wiwfm verdict on this one is hells yes!

Product Review: Bio Oil

Hi ladies,

Today we're talking Bio-Oil.

There was a lot of hype around this product when it first came out, which really made me want to try it: my face and body are scar-mania. When it first came out it was crazy expensive, but I got a bottle of it at Shoppers for like $11 so I thought I'd give it a try.

This is really just a teaser post because the jury's still out on this one: it's recommended that you use it for 3 months in order to see results and I've only been using it for two weeks, but I thought I'd share my thoughts on this so far.

This is a fairly thick oil that smells really pleasant - pretty much exactly the same as Skin-So-Soft if you ask me. The idea is that you massage this into skin twice a day and rub in until absorbed. I've been using it on my cheeks (I have a lot of acne scars) and my dark knees. During the week I only use it once a day on my face; I apply it for bed but there's no way I could put this on my face before my makeup. So far I see not a lick of difference; in fact I think it may be making the clogged pores on my face even worse! But I'm reserving judgement since it has only been a few weeks...

The wiwfm verdict on this one is we'll see. Have any of you tried it? I'd love to hear your feedback. Drop me a comment!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Product Review: Redken Smooth Down

I have a confession to make: I've been unfaithful.
Back in April when I wrote my first post, I told you about my Long Term Relationship with Herbal Essences. And it was good, don't get me wrong. LTR was good to me and for me. But it's hard to be monogamous when there is so much out there and I admit that I was led astray.

First there was a dalliance with
Herbal Essences Pin Straight. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but it didn't really work out. At first I was dazzled by how much it loosened my curl, but over time I realized that I just needed more moisture. I thought longingly of LTR and vowed to go back and beg forgiveness for cheating, but then my head was turned once more. I think this one is for keeps.

My new love's name is Redken Smooth Down and it is the truth, let me tell you.

After that one night stand I had with Redken Extreme, I was more than willing to try it again. But I knew this time I needed something that would give me the moisture of LTR and the straightening of Pin Straight. Mom, I think I've found the one.

Redken's website promises that the Smooth Down family of products is "specially formulated to enrich and tame extremely dry, coarse, unruly hair". Fortified with macadamia oil (which is supposed to be great for hair) and a whole bunch of other stuff, it provides great conditioning and makes your hair visibly straighter, even before you blowdry.

I couldn't afford the whole line, so I went for the Shampoo, Conditioner, and Heat Glide. Let me break them down one by one for you...

Smooth Down Shampoo was great: it had good lather and rinsed clean, but left my hair feeling a little stripped afterward. Nothing new; pretty much all shampoo does that. One thing that puzzled me though was the smell. Not that it's bad, it just smells clean. But with the colour of the packaging and the fact that it's got macadamia oil in it had me expecting a warm cocoa buttery-type smell so I was a little thrown off when I sniffed it and just smelled...shampoo. No biggie though.

Smooth Down Conditioner was nice too. Not as thick as I like, but it did the job. I had a hell of a time rinsing it out though, as usual. But that may have been as much because of my method of rinising my hair in cold water whilst trying not to let said cold water touch my skin as because of the conditioner itself. I know I didn't get it all out, but what was left was just on the ends and they need moisture anyway so...

Now the
Smooth Down Heat Glide is serious business. It's a thick serum that just glides through your hair. And it really works! I was already ecstatic with the results after putting it in wet hair before blowdrying, but last night I decided to try an experiment: I put it on my dry hair at night just before wrapping (on just one side of my head so I could compare the results) and when I took it out in the morning the difference was remarkable.

I'm going back next paycheque for the
Smooth Down Butter Treat which I'll use as a pre-poo and maybe even the Sleek Obedience anti-frizz solid serum after I run out of my other serums. I'll skip the detangling conditioner as I don't really have a problem with tangles.

Obviously, the wiwfm verdict on this one is hell's yes!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Me, Myself, and My Beauty Regime

Hi Pretties!
Hope everyone is having a great weekend! Mine has been extremely exciting and fantastically boring all at the same time. It started out Friday night with an invite to the "exclusive" ETalk which I spotted my future husband Idris Elba, flirted shamelessly with former crushboy, and searched frantically for current crushboy. It was tonnes of fun but no pics because my purse was too tiny to fit my camera in. My new friend Killa took some pics of me, so if I get my hands on them I'll definitely post them here.

After that my weekend has been pretty quiet. I've pretty much spent it on "bed island" as I like to call it. I just stay in bed all day and do everything here. I got all caught up on Gossip Girls - Serena is gorgeous isn't she? - and did a little work as well. That's it. The one productive thing I did was to go for a "walkjog" - I'm trying to get more exercise so I walk the Kay Gardner Beltline Trail whenever I can but I'm always so jealous of the people who are jogging instead of walking that I've decided to become a jogger. So I'm alternating walking and jogging until I'm in good enough shape to be able to jog the whole thing. Wish me luck. Hopefully the whole thing will go a lot more smoothly once I quit smoking - whenever that may be lol.

Anyway, as I write this I'm on bed island again after showering and washing my hair. This is my favourite part of the week - I feel completely clean and reborn. It's definitely my "most beautiful" moment - mentally that is. Esthetically it's not a good look at all, let me tell you. I look a fright right now with bantu knots in my hair, Bio Oil schmeered over my face, and my feet slathered in Aquaphor and wrapped in plastic. It's all part of my weekend beauty regime, which is supposed to be the topic of today's post...

So like everyone else (I assume), I do what I can during the week to keep up my appearance, but with so little time and so much else going on, it's on the weekends that I do all the real heavy lifting. So here's a rundown of my weekend Beautification process. Some of it I've blogged about before:

-If I have no plans on Friday night I prepoo my hair using either coconut oil, olive oil, eggs, deep conditioner, regular conditioner, or some combination of all of them. I coat my hair (concentrating on the ends), stick a plastic cap on it and wrap in a heated towel. If I don't have time Fridays I do this Saturday mornings instead.

-Usually at some point during the prepoo process, I tackle my skin. As I may have mentioned a time or two, I have extremely oily skin and a lot of clogged pores so I start out with the OCM including the pore vaccuum, and then I hit my skin with the aspirin mask which refines and brighens my skin. After that I spread Bio Oil over it (check my Bio Oil post here) and go about my business.

-I wash the prepoo out of my hair in the shower, then put conditioner in, slap on a showercap, and go about my business in the shower while the steam helps my hair to absorb the conditioner. "Going about my business" in the shower means shaving pretty much everything, exfoliating my whole body (I do this everytime I shower though), and scrubbing my feet with the pumice stone. Then I rinse the conditioner out with cold water (yowtch!) and if I'm blowing my hair out straight I wrap it in a t-shirt (it's more gentle on your hair than a regular towel) for ten minutes. If I'm wearing my hair curly as I am this week, I put it back in the shower cap so it says extra wet until I'm ready to style.

-Slather my feet with Dr. Scholl's For Her Ultra Overnight Foot Cream and then with Aquaphor or Coconut Oil and then wrap with plastic and cover with socks. Lotion myself from head to toe with Nivea Smooth Replenishing Lotion in the summertime or Extra Nourishing Milk in the wintertime. These are the two best lotions ever in my opinion. At this point I usually need a rest, so I chill out for a little while.

-After tackling my hair - a drama so intense it needs its own post - I move on to my nails. I polish my fingernails every weekend and my toenails every other weekend. Once I've done that, I have no choice but to sit down and rest myself so that my nails don't get wrecked. They usually do though.

So that's it. I like to have one "grooming" day on the weekend and one relaxation day. When my weekends are too busy for me to do all that stuff I get really cranky.

What about you guys? Do any of you have special weekend beauty routines? Drop me a comment and let me know I'm not a freak :)

p.s. I have to send a shout out to my newest reader (and work neighbour) Daniela. She's hilarious, loves my blog, and is a whiz with the liquid eyeliner. What's not to love?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

I Love your Blog!

Hi girls!
Big huge shout-outs to Kim at A Life of Style for once again showing me bloglove...she's so sweet and her blog is fab. If you haven't checked it out please do.

She tagged lil ole me as a blog one of her favourite blogs and I'm sharing the love by posting some of my faves. I currently subscribe to over 100 blogs so I can't share them all but these are some great ones:

And in the spirit of sharing the bloglove....

Here are the rules:
1. The nominated is allowed to put this picture on their blogs.
2. Link to the person who hearted you.
3. Nominate at least 7 other people and link to them.
4. Leave a message on those people's blog to make them aware that they're nominated

Product Review: OPI Moon over Mumbai

Hi there,

Today we're talking nails and I'm going to try to skip all the preamble and just get right into it. I know I tend to ramble on and on before I get to the point. Sorry about that.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I got my nails done at Novo Spa in Yorkville with some girls from work. (Sidebar: Novo is a great spa, if you're in the Toronto area you should check it out). It took me all of two seconds to choose Moon Over Mumbai as my nail colour; I've been wanting to try this shade ever since I bought Elephantastic Pink way back in April.

O.P.I. describes this colour as “[a] romantic shade of soft, moonlit grey”. That's certainly true of the colour in the bottle, but on my nails it's not necessarily the case. Even after three coats, the colour just doesn't look grey. My roommate described the colour as "oyster", which I thought was pretty fit. Either way I'm not complaining. It's a beautiful sheer shade that's neither pink nor beige, making it a great escape from the classic nude colours we're so used to seeing.

The thing about it is though that it's a bitch to apply. Holy crap. Now I'm not a novice at polishing my nails by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm really struggling to get this stuff on streak-free. I can do it in three coats, but I want to try to do it in two. The only thing that I've found that helps is to let each coat dry fully before you apply the next one. Which basically means it takes about three hours to polish my nails. Who has time for that?

I think I've found my fall HG colour. I've been wearing it non-stop for three weeks now and haven't stopped staring at it. The only thing is though that the tips of the nails on my left hand are starting to turn yellow because of smoking; but none of my faithful readers are idiotic enough to actually smoke, are you pretties?

'Til the next time!

Oh yeah right, the wiwfm verdict on this is yes!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Product Review: Sebastian Laminates Concentrate Gel

Hi Everyone!
So once again I've been MIA for a while - sorry about that. It's been a tough couple of weeks at work plus a gorgeous long weekend...not a good combination to motivate me to blog. But I'm back now and I've got a slew of things to talk to you about.

So let's get to it. I haven't blogged about it, but I've been having major hair drama pretty much all summer long. Partly because of the weird and incessantly rainy weather, and partly because of the nature of my hair. See I have really curly type 4A hair that just does not want to be straight. But I'm not really the big curly hair type so I try to force it. And for a long while there I was winning the battle, but lately my curls have been kicking my ass and my hair has been a big puffy, frizzy, mass that I constantly have to wear up in a ponytail or a twist, but even that doesn't help because my hair has so many layers that something somewhere is always falling out.

Anyway. So my hair routine in a nutshell goes pretty much something like this: I wash my hair only once a week, usually on a Friday or Saturday. I pre-poo first with coconut oil, olive oil, beaten eggs, deep conditioner, or some combination of those. Then I wash, blowdry (which is my own personal version of hell), and flatiron it. Somewhere throughout that process I put some serum in (usually before blowdrying and after flatironing) and that should be all the product I put in my hair for the whole week.

Problem is, my hair is still a frizzy mess all the time, especially my ends. So I keep putting more and more serum in and it keeps not helping and my hair just gets more and more limp as each day goes by. So finally I said, enough is enough. I'm going to shell out the extra money and buy a professional brand of serum and hopefully that will help with the frizz.

I marched into Trade Secrets a few weeks ago and spoke to one of the sales associates.
I told her that I had very curly, very thirsty hair that I don't chemically straighten (did I forget to mention that I stopped relaxing my hair about three years ago?) and basically gave her the rundown of my routine. I told her I needed a good serum that I could put in my hair once a week that would actually make my hair shiny and not frizzy. She marched so purposefully over to this product that I thought she knew something I didn't. I was a little skeptical because it looks like a gel and has the word "gel" written clearly on the package, but when I questioned her about it, she assured me that it was indeed a serum. Okay then.

After I finished choking to death over the $24.95CAD price tag, I went to the cash to pay for it. The girl working the register was black (she's the one who gave me the sample of Redken Extreme the last time I was there. I asked her if she'd ever used this stuff or agreed with the recommendation and she was like "oh this gel?" I cut her off. "Is it a gel or a serum?" I demanded. "Let me see it please?". At this point her manager stepped in. This guy literally would not let me hold the tube of gel/serum that I was about to shell out $24.95 for. He was like, "what is it you want to know?" and I told him that I just wanted to read the ingredients. After a whole long rigamarole (during which I never did get to actually hold the tube), he explained to me that it was a serum "in gel form" and that while it did contain alcohol in it, it was basically a serum that just had a little hold. Okay fine. I paid for it and left.

I washed my hair the next day and went through the whole process. I couldn't wait to see the finished product. Sadly, my hair was no less frizzy and no more straight than it ever was. And it was sticky to boot. Not excessively, crazily sticky, but should your hair ever be sticky? I would prefer not, thanks. Luckily my sister showed up the next day bearing a gift: Avon Advance Techniques Dry Ends Serum. Now this shit is a serum! Way better than the Sebastians stuff and about 1/5 of the price. It smells great and actually moisturizes my hair and gives it some shine.

Sebastians Gel has been relegated to pomade status. And even for that purpose it's not the greatest. But I have to find some use for it after all that money I spent on it.
Anyway, needless to say, the wiwfm verdict on this one is no.