Tag Archives: christmas


Christmas is just around the corner! Here is a list of sales going on this weekend, and my picks!



In preparation for the impending Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, I’ve come up with three wishlists/looks for this Christmas. Since some sales have already started, in the left sidebar, I’ve started a list of sales going on, and I’ll be announcing more sales as I get knowledge of them.

Subscribe in the top left corner for email notifications of sales and posts! Continue reading AMANDA’S HOLIDAY SHOPPING PICKS


THE WEATHER OUTSIDE HAS BECOME PRETTY FRIGHTFUL, and yes, the fire is so delightful. Don’t get me wrong, I love winter, but there is a time and place for me to be outside in the snow–usually excessively bundled up wearing waterproof mascara. If I look back at Christmas’ past, it’s safe to say I’ve spent many days of my holidays pampering myself. I mean, I never usually have time to try out new DIY masks or give my nails the attention they need. So why not now, when there’s no way in hell I’m leaving the house?! I present to you a few of my favourite tricks for the at-home spa day.

For your dry, rough feet: What a great foot to start on (ya…)! This one is super weird and kind of uncomfortable at first but the results are actually astonishing. So wash your feet, get in there with the pumice stone if you fancy to, cut your nails if need be, then get ready for the softest feet ever. You’ll need two grocery bags (the plastic ones) and your favourite lotion. Literally apply a ton of lotion to each foot, like more than you could ever rub in. Disperse it onto your entire foot, making sure that there is still plenty of extra lotion in need of being rubbed in, then put each foot into a grocery bag. Tie the handles up around your ankles, and leave for as long as possible (a few hours will do wonders). It feels gross at first, but when you reveal your baby-soft feet at the end, you will never try anything else.

For your brittle hair: There’s no rhyme or reason for this one. The best thing you can do for your hair is to deeply cleanse and hydrate! Oils–be it EVOO, coconut oil, avocado oil, anything you’ve got on hand really, just apply it straight to the ends of your hair (not the roots!!). Again, the longer you leave it, the better, really. When it’s time to wash it out, double-shampoo to get rid of any build-up (Amanda’s got a great trick for this), then rinse with some apple-cider vinegar for some serious shine. And now that you’ve paid some special (albeit well-earned) attention to your mane, let it dry naturally for heavens sake!!

For your skin: I don’t know if you’re thinking what I’m thinking, but MASKS, MASKS, MASKS! If you’ve got the time, why not? Give your face a good cleanse, steam it before your rinse, then apply your favourite mask OR make one of your own– turmeric is a great ingredient if you’ve got acne, yogurt and honey are great for dry skin. You can do a few different masks if you play your cards right– don’t do more than one that contains a strong acidic ingredient (salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, glycolic acid), and stick to one clay mask (completely getting rid of the oils of your skin will never end nicely, expect only more oil than in the first place). Once you’ve masked to your hearts content, throw on a heavy moisturizer and don’t even think of going near your makeup bag.

For your body: If you’re so inclined, take a bath! I love baths! And I love making little bath concoctions to add to the water for some moisture and other skin-beautifying benefits–milk, oats, epson salts, honey, beauty oils (as I said, virgin coconut oil, avocado oil and extra virgin olive oil are my favourites), baking soda, powdered ginger, even tea! Now once you’ve soaked and you’re all pruned, scrub! Honey and sugar is one of my favourites–make it so that you have a nice thick paste. Scrub everywhere, slather on some lotion, then throw on your robe and get ready to fall asleep.

For your albeit rough nails: Cut and file your nails to perfection, then grab some of your homemade scrub and go at it, getting right in-between your fingers and at the cuticles. Rinse, then put on your best cream. Grab some polish remover, clean off your nails from any extra oils, then polish them. Don’t fool yourself, everyone loves their nails done but no one has the time for the up-keep… until now! Might as well!

Happy spa-day!

–Anna Raponi


You know those awkward Secret Santa’s where you have to buy something for someone you barely know? Cowshed has the solution for the awkward Secret Santa’s of any price range, with their holiday gift sets starting at $16 and all the way up to $64. I mean, who doesn’t love some great smelling bath and body products? Not to mention that these products are natural, and don’t contain any bad stuff (so it also works for your all-organic, vegan, yoga-loving friend). The formulations contain high ratios of high quality essential oil giving them a therapeutic quality (and also makes them smell amazing).

It doesn’t have to be near strangers that receive their sets, they would work perfectly for any girl or guy–they also carry a men’s line, and my husband really likes the Lazy Cow range.

This particular set, containing the Grumpy Cow scrub, Gorgeous Cow (the prettiest rose scent) shower gel and Lazy Cow body lotion and retails for $38.00.


A few little things that any women would love to put to use.
Lush Bath Bombs & Mini Shower Gels: Lush is famous for their quirky bath and body products– bars of shampoo, the Sex Bomb and Henna hair dyes. All of their products stand by their ethical philosophy, meaning no animal testing, fresh ingredients, environmentally friendly production and packaging and donations to LUSH FunD and Charity Pot.That being said, everything from Lush smells amazing, seriously. A baby shower gel or a bath bomb is the perfect stocking stuffer, because come on, who wouldn’t love to take a nice bath? Ponche, the shower gel I’ve been trying out, literally contains a shot of tequila to wake you right up. Rose Jam, the body wash Amanda was trying out, smells like what rose macarons taste like in Paris. Oh, also, their bath bombs look super cool as they fizz up into the water, and usually leave the water a pretty colour. The Golden Wonder is especially cool as it goes through several evolutions, with the end results being a bluish mermaid-coloured water rippled with scented oils, gold shimmer and little golden stars. Simply magical.
The Body Shop Mini Hand Creams: The perfect safe present for the woman in your life (let’s say, in-laws, teachers, friends–but not quite best friends, you catch my drift) whom you aren’t entirely sure on what to get. Everyone needs hand cream!! These holiday scents aren’t too sweet and nourish deep enough to counteract Jack Frost’s jackass temperatures. Cranberry Joy smells amazing, like I’m addicted. My friend loves Ginger Sparkle, and steals some every time she’s over.
Rococco Nail Polishes: At first I was thinking that these would be more suitable for a younger audience, but I’m reconsidering. I mean grey and black are great staple shades that I think most women can pull off. But I ain’t saying that these Rococco polishes are boring. These two in particular are from their Molten Lava: Lost in Space winter collection, basically the coolest thing in the world (or should I say out of this world? HA). Bad Robot is a frosty silvery/ grey shade that has super finely-milled sparkles that reflect the colours like that of spilled oil that you see in parking lots (that just might be the most awful description I’ve ever given a product). But in a good way! It’s like mega iridescent, and when held up to the light, it’s honestly breathtaking. Space Invader your classic black gone sci-fi, with tiny flecks of silver sparkles. Both are hella long lasting and their ultra thin formula is nearly impossible to pick off when you’re nervous/bored (this was a huge thumbs up for me).
–Anna Raponi


Just in case the hundreds of ‘Christmas Inspired Makeup!!!!’ tutorials (usually involving silver sparkles of some sort and/or red lipstick, gosh this is getting old) haven’t reminded you, it’s the holiday season and wether you like it or not, you will most likely be attending parties that will involve people expecting you to dress up and look cheery.
Now, I love Christmas. Usually I’m that annoying girl who get’s excited halfway through October and puts up the decor November 1st. But this year, I’m just not feelin’ it anymore. The shopping, these said ‘parties’, oh and the coincidental exams right around this time of year, it’s all too stressful and it’s lost its magic. What was I getting at here…oh yes, despite all this you still got to look bangin’. I mean, you’re gonna be seeing friends and family that you may not see very often. And while I’m sure there will be many posts coming giving you the 411 on a candy-cane pout and glitter (everywhere!!), I think it’s about time we went back to basics–bold brows that last. Who ever said that brows can’t be exciting!! I mean, how great does a perfect red lip look with just a little mascara and strong arched brows?
So I played around with the contents of my makeup collection, looking for the longest lasting, most effective and easiest to apply option. Eyeliner! Strong colour payoff, long wearing, and with this technique, you can’t really screw up. Pick a liner that is similarly coloured to your brow hair–taupe for blonde and redheads, brown for brunettes, and black or dark brown for black hair. Draw some onto the back of your hand, warming it up a little. Now dip your angled brush into the colour on the back of your hand, brushing it around to work off a little bit of the pigment and get in there! Avoid too much pigment at the very insides of your brows (you may end up with a near-unibrow), accentuate that arch, and maybe even extend the ends just a tad for some extra drama. Once you’re happy with your creation, spray some hairspray onto your spoolie, then brush your brows into place–I like brushing up, then outwards for my biggest brows). Now literally highlight your masterpieces with highlighter, right under the arches of your brows. When the light hits your face, the highlighter will make your arches appear just that bit higher and give your face more definition. They brows won’t budge and are party-ready (even if you aren’t).

–Anna Raponi




Hypnôse Velours: These are what look like eyeliner tattoos. If you are a girl who can’t keep her hand steady, but is just dying for a touch of drama this winter, these are foolproof. You just stick these on as close to your natural lashline as possible, and voilà! Perfect eyeliner. People will be in awe at your skill. If you’re a bit nervous about stickers for both the upper and lower lashes, split them up! These can be reused up to three times. These would be perfect for any glamorous Christmas or New Years’ party. Since not all eyes are alike, be sure to have a black eyeliner on hand to fill in any gaps.

Highlighter Rose Etincelle: Essentially, any young girl’s fantasy makeup powder (my 12-year old self would apply this all over my face). For those who need a highlighter, this is extremely good value, the compact is really quite large, and the frosty pink pearlescent glitter is quite concentrated. Apply to the tops of the cheekbones, the browbone, inner corners of the eyes, and the top of the cupid’s bow for an illuminated look, or, if you want to go full snow queen, you could apply it as eyeshadow and to your decolleté.

Vernis in Love in Flacon Blanc Noel: This nail polish looks like my 90’s tween glitter fantasy in a bottle, but in fact, it gives off more of a subtle matte-textured glitter look, following right along with the texture trend of the moment. Snowflakes for your fingers!