Dear Diary

A few weeks ago we got an email from our girl Maram at Lush HQ asking if we’d be into a tour of the Lush factory here in Toronto, and though we weren’t sure what was in store we eagerly replied “yes!”

This past Tuesday we woke up early, hopped in a cab half awake, and headed to Etobicoke. Walking into the factory was like walking into a massive cloud of scent perfection- think Lush store level x 1000! We quickly started the tour, exploring everything from the bath bomb mixing room, to the labelling section and soap department. We tried our hand at pressing bath bombs, mixing fresh masks, and even covered ourselves with special lustres in the glitter room!

Last but not least we entered the bubble room, a giant open space packed with people hand shaping and prepping the bubble bars and bubbleroons that we all know and love. We got a quick tutorial on making up the mixture, then practiced shaping our own bars with all the other employees (who seemed mildly entertained by our lack of skill).

We left the factory smelling like Lush, with bags full of somewhat-deformed product that we had attempted to make ourselves. The best part about the whole experience was learning more about Lush as a company- whole avocados get hand cut into their products, funds are given to local sustainable farmers so they can meet the company’s demands whenever possible, and everyone putting the products together seemed genuinely passionate about what they were doing. Paired with their very public devotion to the fight against animal testing, Lush’s values have really made me a die-hard fan of their amazing natural products.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to take a very colourful bath…

IMG_2652

IMG_2677

IMG_2641

IMG_2623

IMG_2647

IMG_2741

IMG_2625

IMG_2643

IMG_2689

IMG_2716

Oh so Pretty

I’m no stranger to messing around with my hair- its been bleached, toned, and dyed almost every pastel colour you can dream up over the past 6 years, and I’m not planning on putting a stop to the strain anytime soon.

When Dove contacted me to get wild and try a weekend #HairDare I honestly didn’t know what I could do to my hair that I hadn’t already done. I’m really lucky to have strong hair that puts up with just about anything pretty well, but after all this time subjecting it to intense chemicals, the breakage is undeniable, so I try to avoid hot tools and teasing as much as I possibly can.

Luckily, Dove sent me their new Regenerative Nourishment collection so that I could take part in the Hair Dare! Loaded with Red Algae and Keratin NutriComplex, this 3-piece collection is the perfect way to nourish and repair damaged hair, and with the products added to my beauty lineup I felt confident to try something I would never usually put my delicate mane through: I took my hair to new heights!

_MG_1762

IMG_1669

_MG_1772

IMG_1805

IMG_1676

IMG_1796

I’ve always loved the teased 1950’s beauty queen look, so it was pretty exciting to finally have a reason to put my inspiration into action. I headed to Her Majesty’s Pleasure’s decadent blowout bar, and after a seemingly endless session of washes, blowdries, curling irons, brushing and some VERY heavy all-over teasing, I finally had the vintage-inspired locks of my dreams.

Of course my hair was NOT in a good state by the time I got into the shower the next morning. Matted bits were sandwiched between layers of hairspray, and the humidity from the rain the evening before had caused a whole new level of frizz.

With the help of my new Dove lineup, I had my hair back to normal with one wash, a deep condition, and a light layer of their new serum-in-oil treatment. Shiny, smooth, and good as new, my hair was ready for a whole new hair dare before Monday had even rolled around. Thanks to Dove’s Regenerative Nourishment range, I’m no longer terrified of taking hair risks!

IMG_1889

IMG_1937

IMG_1951

IMG_1890

IMG_2163

This post was sponsored by Dove Canada, but all opinions are my own. To inquire about sponsored posts, please email jess@shineinfluencers.com

Oh so Pretty

I’m a big homebody, and now that I work from home making my space a sort of pastel paradise has become even more important. Johanna and I have put a lot of love and attention into every corner of The Pastel Palace, but these days we’re really focusing on making our studio/home office super swoon worthy. From photo backdrops hung on copper pipes to a pretty epic prop shelf, the space is really starting to take shape, and even the tiniest details on my desk are coming together thanks to a bit of early self-gift-shopping on the Canadian Birchbox site.

Birchbox is famous for their amazing beauty boxes and cosmetics shop, but they also have a pretty fun lifestyle section loaded with all sorts of special goodies. From Rifle Paper Co. card sets to Lauren Hope jewels, you’re sure to find something in this section for everyone on your list (and maybe a treasure or two for yourself too!) Here are some snaps of my favourite desktop essentials- they all come together to create a pretty dreamy nook for team RAOP to plan our pastel world from, don’t you think?

DSC_2232

DSC_2246

DSC_2253

DSC_2242

In order of appearance- Ban.do tumbler, Tocca mini candle set, December Birchbox, Rifle Paper Co. notepad calendar, Gorjana Chloe necklace, and Benefit Cha Cha Balm

Birchbox – The Box is Monthly, the Beauty & Grooming Possibilities are Endless! Sign up for just $10/month.

Oh so Pretty

Whoever said “Never ask a girl with winged eyeliner why she’s late” really hit the nail on the head. I love playing around with my beauty look, especially around the holidays, but I never quite mastered the art of the cat eye until my recent discovery of felt-tip liner pens. Though I still wouldn’t venture to call myself a pro by any means, the addition of liquid liner pens to my makeup bag has definitely taken my eye makeup from kitten to cat.

I put together this metallic look using a handful of products from the Birchbox shop, including my favourite black liner pen by Cynthia Rowley and the new LOC shadow pens (which are amazing by the way!) As long as you have a steady (ish) hand, you’ll be ready to sparkle at every holiday party from now to New Year’s Eve!

DSC_2179

DSC_2154

DSC_2106

DSC_2096 copy

Supplies //

Vasanti Primer
Cynthia Rowley Black Liquid Liner
Cynthia Rowley Beauty Eyeliner
LOC One and Done Shadow Sticks in “Day Trip”, “On Point”, and “Smoke Screen”
Eyeko Black Magic Mascara
Cargo Blush in “Bali”
LAQA & co. Cheeky Lip pen in “Humble Brag”

Instructions //

1 // Prime your eyelids with Vasanti’s All Star Primer to create an even base.

2 // Start by painting your upper lid with “On Point”, then add “Smoke Screen” to the outer corner of your lower lids, and
“Day Trip” to the inner corners.

3 // Using your trusty Cynthia Rowley liquid liner pen, carefully draw on the cat eye as close to your lash line as possible. Don’t be afraid to go back and fill in any patchy spots!

4 // Draw a line of silver as close to your bottom lash line as possible using the Cynthia Rowley Beauty Eyeliner, and follow under the same line with the black liquid liner to create a double cat eye effect. Finish the eyes off with a healthy dose of mascara on both the top and bottom lashes (I’m obsessed with Eyeko’s Black Magic formula)

5 // Add a touch of pink to the look with a warm pink blush and a berry pink lip- just in case you land a kiss or two under the mistletoe!

DSC_2112

DSC_2101

DSC_2157

Birchbox – The Box is Monthly, the Beauty & Grooming Possibilities are Endless! Sign up for just $10/month.