Thursday, March 29, 2012

Dear Jessica Simpson


Dear Jessica Simpson, 


I think we can agree that, with your added baby weight, you are now, what some (not necessarily me) would consider a 'plus size woman'. Personally, I think you look great. Not only do you have that lovely pregnant glow, you seem confident in yourself and your body, which is inspiring to others. 


It is for all of the reasons above that I got very excited when I spotted your Spring 2012 collection in The Bay today. As a plus size woman, it is often hard to find fashionable clothes and I was hoping that your collection would incorporate the two things every plus size woman (or any sized woman) looks for: style and fit. Unfortunately, Jessica, you have only nailed one of these two 'needs' on the head. 


There is no doubt that your line is stylish and trendy, in fact I almost did a happy dance right there in the store, when I saw your red and blue colourful plus size jeans. Coloured jeans is a trend I absolutely love, but unfortunately, because of my size 24 figure, have not been able to find.


Jessica, you gave me hope when I saw these coloured jeans in a size 24. Finally someone has listened to what us plus size women want and has announced to the fashion world that bigger girls can wear the latest fashions too.


Then just like that, with one simple tug of the size 24 jeans that wouldn't make it past my knees, all of my fashionable plus size dreams were dashed. Why tease us Jessica? Why tell us that bigger women can look hip and trendy, only to make size 24 jeans (the largest size you carry) fit like a size 18 (and a size 18 fit like a size 12)?


To me, this is almost worse than the fashion designers who won't even consider us plus size girls. At least they are straight forward and tell us 'No, we refuse to make fashionable designer clothing for you". At least they don't give us false hope. 


Jessica, plus size women are not just a size 14 or 16, plus size women come in all shapes and sizes (20, 26, 32), and we too deserve to wear fashionable, trendy clothes. 


You have already taken the step to show the fashion world that you want to design great clothes for women of all sizes, why not take the next step and make sure those clothes actually fit us. We're ready for it. Are you? 


Thank you for your time, 
Your size 24 friend, 


Alicia



Wednesday, March 28, 2012

My Favourite Spring Polishes


Hey Everyone, 


With spring finally here, and summer just around the corner, it's time to break out the bright pastel and light neutral nail polishes. My nail polish collection seems to be constantly growing, making it hard to pick out only ten favourites. However, trying to show a variety of colours and finishes, I have picked out five bright and five neutral polishes I love for Spring. Here are my favourites:

THE BRIGHTS


China Glaze 'Lemon Fizz':
This pastel yellow polish, originally from the 'Up In The Air' collection is, in my opinion, the perfect spring colour. This polish is extremely creamy and goes on opaquely in two coats. For some reason this colour, reminds me of Easter, so I will be rocking 'Lemon Fizz' on my nails over the Easter weekend. 


Essie 'Lilacism':
This super creamy, light purple polish is definitely one of my all time favourites. While this polish clearly has a lot of colour, I personally find that it acts as a nice neutral with a variety of outfits. While the consistency of this polish is rather thin, it does apply opaquely in two to three coats. 


Essie 'Lapis of Luxury':
This absolutely gorgeous, creamy blue polish is somewhat hard for me to describe. Falling somewhere between a baby blue, and a turquoise blue, 'Lapis of Luxury' is unlike any of the other polishes I own. This has a nice, thick consistency and applies opaquely in just two coats. 


Essie 'Van D'Go':
This creamy peachy-pink polish is somewhat deceiving. While it looks light and very 'pastel-like' in the bottle, it actually comes out quite vibrant when applied to the nails. I think this makes a great toe nail polish colour for both spring and summer. 



Essie 'Turquoise and Caicos': 
If I had to choose only one polish to wear for the rest of spring and throughout the summer, Essie's 'Turquoise and Caicos' would be it. This vibrant, aqua blue polish looks absolutely stunning on the nails and works nicely with both neutral and colourful outfits. If you don't already have this polish, you need it...enough said. 

Thumb to Pinkie: Lemon Fizz, Lilacism, Lapis of Luxure, Van D'Go, Turquoise and Caicos


THE NEUTRALS


Essie 'Demure Vixen': 
This grey-brown purple polish, packed with purple and pink shimmer, is a perfect neutral shade, that works all year long. I love the high sheen this polish gives the nails, however, because of its very thin consistency, it goes on fairly streaky and requires a good three to four coats. 


OPI 'Stranger Tides': 
Falling somewhere between a light minty green and a darker kahki, this grey-toned green polish from OPI's 'Pirates of the Caribbean' is unlike anything I own. I love using this creamy, opaque polish for both spring and fall. Unfortunately this colour was limited edition and, therefore, difficult to find. 


Orly 'Rage': 
This metallic rose gold polish is, understandably, one of Orly's most popular shades. While this colour looks great on the nails all year long, it is especially pretty for spring. The formula of this polish is super opaque, and looks great on the nails, with just one coat. 


'essence 'Irreplaceable': 
This light grey-brown polish packed FULL of golden shimmer is not only gorgeous, it's super cheap. At only $1.49 CND, 'Irreplaceable' applies opaquely in two coats and gives the nails a stunning golden glow. If you have yet to try any of the essence polishes, do it now!


Revlon 'Cotton Candy': 
When I first saw that Revlon was coming out with scented nail polish, I couldn't quite wrap my head around the concept, and didn't believe they would actually smell like their names. Well, I was wrong, this light pink polish, packed with golden shimmer, smells exactly like cotton candy. This is the perfect colour for spring and gives the nails a natural, nude look. 

Pink to Thumb: Cotton Candy, Irreplaceable, Rage, Stranger Tides, Demure Vixen





What are your favourite polishes for spring? What are you currently wearing on your nails? 

xx

Alicia

Monday, March 26, 2012

Monday Q & A #22




Hey Everyone, 

One of my favourite bloggers, Karen of Makeup and Beauty Blog, does a weekly poll on her blog encouraging readers to take part. Every Monday, I will be posting my answers to her questions on my blog, and hope that you will join me by making your own post, or leaving your answers to the following questions in the comment section below.



1. Mood: Exhausted. I spent Thursday to Sunday nannying for two kids with my friend Kerri. The kids are great kids, and we had a lot of fun, but I don't know how parents do it. I had planned to write several posts during the weekend, but by the end of each night, I was ready for bed, and couldn't bring myself to blog. Today I am spending the day in bed, recovering...haha. 

2. Have you tried the Clinique 3-Step System?: I have tried it before. A couple of years ago when my acne started getting bad, I was talked in to using the 3-Step System. Personally, I didn't really like it, and found it did nothing for my acne. 


3. Something you do to soothe yourself when you start feeling stressed?: Truthfully, if I am feeling stressed or sick, I like to go play with my makeup. I know it sounds weird, but looking at everything I have, and swatching it, really calms me down. Obsessed much?



4. Do you know how to platform/springboard dive?: I used to know how to dive when I was younger, and I'm sure I could do it now if someone put a gun to my head, but the combination of being plus size and having fibromyalgia, gives me the idea that doing it might not go over so well. 

5. Sparkling water or still?: I definitely drink still water more often, but I do occasionally like drinking sparkling water (especially if I'm not feeling well). 


6. We’re meeting for brunch on Saturday! What makeup will you wear?: I'd probably go for a very natural look (it's the morning after all). Foundation, concealer, a little bit of pink rosy blush, a light shimmery shadow, mascara and a rosy lip gloss. I'm having a Sunday brunch for my 30th Birthday later in April, and I have yet to decide what makeup to do for it. 


7. Are you wearing sun screen today?: Nope. I'm staying inside all day, although, to be honest, I usually forget to put it on. 


8. Your favorite t-shirt?: I'm not sure I have a favourite t-shirt. I wear a lot of sweats and tees (especially when nannying). Anything light, v-necked and preferably black. 


9. A pricey beauty indulgence you’d love to try?: I bought one of the YSL Glossy Stains(#5) recently, but want to try more (especially #12 an #13). I'd also love to try a Chanel foundation and some of their blushes. I've heard Becca products are amazing, so I'd love to try some of those, and finally I'd really like to get my hands on the Makeup Forever Flash Palette (mostly because it looks so pretty). 


10. Weekly goals: I really need to find some new shoes for my trip to New York in two weeks. I don't have any comfortable walking shoes at the moment. I also really need to write, and post, a couple of product reviews. I have fallen behind on posts. 

If you decide to answer the questions, leave your responses or the link to your responses in the comment section below. 


Hope you all have a great week. 

xx
Alicia

Beauty Quote of the Week #62


The beauty of a girl cannot be mimicked, fabricated, or created by human means. It only occurs naturally. 


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Nail of the Day: Gradient Coral-Peach


Hey Everyone, 


I hope you are all having a fabulous day. I can't believe the weather here lately. It seems we've skipped over Spring completely, and are well in to Summer. With temperatures sitting close to 30 degrees Celcius, it is not only warm here, it's down right HOT! For me, Summer weather always means two things: 1)I have to start shaving my legs, as I can no longer hide my leg hair under pants and, 2) It's time for a bold, colourful manicure!


Having a hard time figuring out what polish to use first, I decided to paint each of my nails a different shade of coral or peach to create a 'gradient', very colourful effect. I realize that my nails are in desperate shape for a manicure and acrylic fill, and that my polish skills are less than stellar, but I still like the over all effect. Here are the colours I chose (from thumb to pinky):





1) OPI's 'My Chihuahua Bites': A super hot, red-coral, and one of 
   my all time favourite polishes. 
2) Sephora by OPI 'How Cute is That?': A gorgeous shimmering 
   peachy-coral with golden shimmer. 
3) China Glaze 'Peachykeen': A creamy orange-peach with a very 
   opaque finish. 
4) Essie 'Tart Deco': A bright, super creamy, pinky-peach.
5) Revlon 'Cotton Candy': A baby-pink peach with golden shimmer 
   that smells exactly like cotton candy. 





I really like the gradient effect and can definitely see it working nicely with varying shades of purple or teal. 


Have you every tried a gradient manicure? Would you wear five different colours on your nails? What are you currently wearing on your nails? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 


xx
Alicia

Monday, March 19, 2012

FOTD: Smoked Peach + A Tutorial Video


Hey Everyone, 


This weekend I had the chance to play around with some of the products I received from Caryl Baker Visage's new Spring 2012 collection. While I still want to test them out a little more before posting my review, I have to say that I am loving everything I have tried so far. Below are pictures of the'Smoked Peach' face of the day I created using all of the items I received from the collection. I have also added a tutorial style video showing you how I created the look. 



FACE
Foundation: Vichy Norma Derm Teinte in 'Opal'
Blush: Caryl Baker Visage 'Wowee Maui'
Highlighter: Caryl Baker Visage Spring Sparkler in 'Bali'



EYES
Eyeshadow: Caryl Baker Visage Eyeshadow Trio in 'Mystic-al, Dream On and Coco Loco'
Mascara: Benefit 'They're Real'


LIPS
Lipstick: Caryl Baker Visage 'Coral Crush'




Have you tried anything from Caryl Baker Visage? Would you wear the three eyeshadow colours together? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 


xx
Alicia

Monday Q & A #21





Hey Everyone, 

One of my favourite bloggers, Karen of Makeup and Beauty Blog, does a weekly poll on her blog encouraging readers to take part. Every Monday, I will be posting my answers to her questions on my blog, and hope that you will join me by making your own post, or leaving your answers to the following questions in the comment section below.



1) Mood: Even keeled. I'm not overly happy, not overly sad...just calm. I don't have much to do today other than try on some old summer clothes and see if anything fits. The weather here has been insanely warm lately, and, apparently, later this week, it is going to feel like 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit), which is insane for March. 


2) Pastel eye makeup: your thoughts?: I really like pastel looking eyes and cheeks, but cannot stand pastel lips. I personally don't think anyone looks good in that really pastel pink lipstick that a lot of people are in to these days. I like a nice lavender or mint green eye, a nude cheek and a glossy neutral lip. 


3) When was the last time you played on a trampoline?: Oh man, that would have to be, years ago. Trampolines kind of scare me, especially when someone else is bouncing on it with you. My best friend growing up had one at her cottage, and that was probably the last one I went on. I would have been around 14 or 15 years old. 


4) Your favourite cereal: Just Right! Everyone who has tried it will say the same thing...it is just right! Seriously, it has the perfect mix of salty and sweet, and it just taste so good. If you've never tried it, be sure to grab some the next time you are in the grocery store. 


5) Tell me something about your morning: This is the first morning I've woken up in my own bed in about 10 days. I was house/dog sitting last week which was fun, but it is always nice to be in your own bed. 


6) If you had to pick up and leave tomorrow to spend a year living in a different country, which would it be?: This is easy for me, Italy! I have always wanted to travel there, and I feel like I would feel so at home there. It doesn't hurt that the food and fashion are amazing. I love the movie 'Under the Tuscan Sun', and while I know it is just a movie, I really envy the life the main character builds for herself in the country. 


7) Peter Pan shirt collars: yay or nay?: Peter Pan shirt collars- NAY, Peter Pan necklace collars- YAY!


8) Last time you washed your makeup brushes?: Umm...this is a bad answer but probably three weeks ago. I haven't been using them on anyone but myself, although I should still clean them more regularly. 


9) A beauty trend that freaks you out?: Tattooed eyeliner, eyebrows, lipliner, etc. It looks painful, and to be honest, I think it clearly looks fake. 


10) Weekly Goals: I need to start packing for NYC. I'm a little freaked out because none of my clothes fit and I don't know what kind of weather I should be buying for. 


If you decide to answer the questions, leave your responses or the link to your responses in the comment section below. 

Hope you all have a great week. 

xx
Alicia

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Beauty Quote of the Week #63


Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art

-Eleanor Roosevelt

Friday, March 16, 2012

VIDEO: Mail Haul Part 1 and 2



My Bright Eyeshadow Palettes




Hey Everyone, 


With spring just around the corner, and summer close behind, I thought I would do a quick post featuring my, more colourful, eyeshadow palettes. To be honest, since I started really getting in to makeup a couple of years ago, the majority of my looks tend to air on the neutral side. With that said, I do love a good 'pop of colour' (whether it be lips, eyes, cheeks, etc.), and have a number of bright eyeshadow palettes in my collection, including the three pictured below. 



Coastal Scents Original 88 Eyeshadow Palette
While the shadows in the Coastal Scents 88 palette, might not be the best quality (they aren't bad), this is the perfect palette for those who want to start experimenting with colour, but at a low price. For just $18.95 USD, this palette not only contains every colour under the rainbow, there are various shades of the same colour (a mint green, a grassy green, and a forest green), which is helpful when wanting to achieve a cohesive looking eye. 


Inglot Palette 
I bought the shadows in this palette at last year's NYC IMATS, and  honestly can't believe what great quality they are. At only $5 each (cheaper at IMATS), these shadows are smooth, creamy and so highly pigmented, you'll 'gasp' the first time you swatch one. For this palette, I chose an array of red, pink, orange and yellow eyeshadows, however the company carries a massive variety of colourful and neutral shadows. If you are lucky enough to live near an Inglot store, grab your keys and get over there now!



BH Cosmetics Hot Pot Palette
I bought these individual 'hot pot' eyeshadows (and the palette) last summer while going through a 'colourful' phase. For only $22.72 USD, you can choose fifteen individual shadows from a very wide range of colours. BH Cosmetics carries two types of eyeshadow finishes: matte and shimmer. These shadows are very well pigmented, and, for the most part, are creamy and easy to blend. 


Do you have any colourful eyeshadow palettes? What are your favourite shadows for Spring and Summer? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 

xx
Alicia

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

My MAC Blush Collection





Hey Everyone, 


I love blush...I mean really love it. If I could only use one beauty product for the rest of my life (other than foundation and concealer of course), I would without a doubt choose blush. Blush helps pull a look together and gives the face a finished appearance. In my opinion, MAC Cosmetics carries some of the best blushes on the market, and over the years I've managed to collect quite a few. Below is a more in-depth look at my MAC blush collection. 



MY BRIGHT PALETTE
While some people might shy aways from super bright blushes, they are by far my favourite. There is nothing like a nice pop of colour to help liven up the face. With a light hand, and the right brush, bright blushes can look great on any skin tone. Here are my bright MAC blushes:  


1) Full Fushia: This super bright, hot pink blush with iridescent purple shimmer is absolutely stunning. While it does look overwhelmingly bright, you can use a very light hand to apply the blush to both lighter and darker skin, for a gorgeous spring or summer look.  


2) Frankly Scarlett: While this matte red blush with coral/orange undertones looks extremely frightening in the pan, it actually looks amazing on all skin tones. While Frankly Scarlett appears to be more of a spring and summer blush, it works nicely all year long for the perfect, 'i'm perfectly flushed', rosy glow. 


3) Instant Chic: This creamy, matte, peachy-pink blush is one of my all time favourites. This blush looks amazing on lighter skin tones, adding just enough colour for a fresh faced, natural look. Unfortunately this blush was limited edition, however, knowing MAC, it will be released in a future collection at some point (fingers crossed). 


4) Pink Swoon: This matte, bubblegum pink blush with blue undertones, is another one of my all time favourite blushes. This is the perfect pink colour for lighter skin tones. This blush is extremely creamy which makes for a super easy application. 



5) Bite of an Apple: This matte coral blush, which was a part of the limited edition MAC Venomous Villians collection is extremely pretty, but very difficult to apply. Not only is this blush not creamy and smooth, the pigmentation when swatched is very poor. 


6) Peachykeen: This stunning rose gold blush with golden glitter is one of the few shimmery blushes I own from MAC. It's hard to describe just how gorgeous this blush is, but I definitely think it is a must have for any makeup lover out there. 


7) Whim: As you can see from the pictures, this is one my oldest blushes. I think I have had this blush for over 10 years (really, I should probably get rid of it). Like Pink Swoon, this light pink blush has blue undertones and works nicely for very pale/porcelain skin. Unlike Pink Swoon, this blush is not very creamy and somewhat difficult to apply. 


8) Stark Naked: This, now discontinued, blush is one of MAC's most popular. I was lucky enough to pick up this plummy, mauve blush packed with finely milled golden glitter, at a MAC warehouse sale last year. This blush has very cool undertones making it the perfect colour for fall and winter. 



MY NEUTRAL PALETTE
While I much prefer bright blushes, neutral blushes work great when paired with a bright eye or lip. I have been getting a lot of use out of this palette the past few months, and can definitely see a lot of these colours working nicely for both spring and summer. Here are my neutral blushes (and powders): 


9) Sculpt: I picked up this light brown sculpting powder at Toronto IMATS in November. This is the perfect contour colour for fair skin, and unlike a lot of the other contour powders I have tried, has absolutely no orange undertones. 

10) The Perfect Cheek: This matte, pink-toned, nude blush is the perfect neutral blush for fair to medium skin. I'm not sure what collection this blush was from, but, unfortunately, this colour is no longer available at MAC. Because of its neutral undertones, this super creamy blush works nicely all year long. 

11) Emphasize:  This cream coloured highlighting powder with white shimmer, is another IMATS Toronto find. I absolutely love this highlighter, and find myself using it almost every day. I think this powder is perfect for people who want to de-emphasize large pores because it has hardly any shimmer. I highly recommend this for all skin tones. 

12) Cute: This extremely pale, very creamy, matte pink blush is another limited edition item I picked up from a MAC warehouse sale. Unlike the other pink blushes I own, this blush doesn't have any blue or red undertones, and, therefore, works as a nice neutral blush for very pale skin tones (it's almost too light for me). 


13) Prim and Proper: This matte, brown blush with pink undertones is another find from a MAC warehouse sale. For some reason I have neglected to use this blush in the past, but after photographing it for this post, I realized just how gorgeous it is. With neutral undertones, this blush can be used throughout the year, but probably looks best for fall and winter. 


14) Ever Sun: While this medium brown blush with orange undertones, looks like something I would never wear, I actually love this as a bronzer for the warmer months. This blush has very warm undertones but, in my opinion, looks great on all skin tones. 


15) Clove: This super dark, orange toned, brown blush is one of those items I wish I had never bought (although it was only $3). This colour is both, too orange and too dark for my fair skin. I am keeping this in my collection in hopes that I can use it on others at some point. 


Instant Chic, Pink Swoon, Full Fuchsia, Frankly Scarlett

Whim, Stark Naked, Bite of an Apple, Peachykeen

Emphasize, Cute, The Perfect Cheek, Sculpt

Ever Sun, Clove, Prim and Proper


Do you own any MAC blushes? Which are your favourites? Which MAC blushes do you still want to try? 

xx

Alicia

The Raw Me

No makeup, wet hair and a few things to say. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Face and Outfit of the Day + A Video Makeup 'Tutorial'



Hey Everyone, 

I don't know that the weather was like today where you live, but here it was an absolutely GORGEOUS day outside. Not too warm, not too cold, a lot of sun, and fresh spring air. It was the kind of day that makes you feel like dressing up and taking pictures, which is exactly what I did. 

OUTFIT OF THE DAY
I bought this gorgeous cream sweater from a plus size boutique in Toronto called Gussied Up. I absolutely love the way the sweater looks, but unfortunately found that because of all the holes, it easily gets caught on door handles, wallet closings and clothing hangers. Needless to say, I already have a few pulls in it. Here is what else I wore today: 

  


Top: Gussied Up
Pants: Walmart


Ring: Expression by The Bay


Earrings: Expression by The Bay

FACE OF THE DAY + TUTORIAL
Two weeks ago I had the privilege of attending the Canadian launch party for essence Cosmetics (one of my favourite beauty brands). The branch will be launching in over 900 Shoppers Drugmart stores across the country, this month, and everything from the collection will be priced under five dollars (amazing!). Wanting to try out some of the products I picked up at the event, I decided to do my first ever video makeup 'tutorial' (you can check out the video at the bottom of this post). I loved all of the essence products I ended up using for the look, and found that they were all highly pigmented and very easy to work with. Here is my look: 



FACE:
Foundation: Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer
Powdwer: essence Cosmetics Mattifying Compact Powder in 'Translucent'
Blush: essence Cosmetics Silky Touch Blush in 'Secret-it-girl'
Highlighter: MAC Cosmetics Mineralized Skinfinish in 'Lightscapade'





EYES:
Eyeshadow: essence Cosmetics Quattro Eyeshadow Quad in 'Over the Taupe'
Mascara: essence Cosmetics 'Get Big Lashes' Volume Boost Mascara



LIPS:
Lipstain: essence Cosmetics You Rock Lipstain in 'Your Pink is On Fire'
Lipgloss: essence Cosmetics Tint It Colour Changing Lipgloss in 'Turn to Happy'





Have you tried any products from the essence Cosmetics line? Are you excited the brand is coming to Canada? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below. 


xx
Alicia