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Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Being Human with BeHuman


*I originally had more photos (of donated food & clothing, and more shirt styles) for this post but they were sadly lost when my laptop MacBook was ruined. The keyboard got wet - and I did not know until the entire inside had corroded :(

A while ago I was contacted by the company BeHuman, a clothing company based out of Halifax. Amongst all the emails I receive this companies story stood out by far, and I was delighted to take part in spreading it. The company was inspired by the story of Mathew Jackson, a man who was tragically killed hours after doing an amazing act of kindness for a stranger in need. BeHuman now wants to spread the idea of simply being kind to others and accepting the differences that so often separate us by being a loving, positive, and good human.

The company asked me to take part in a bit of a challenge, to do an act of kindness and share it with all of you. I jumped at this opportunity because most of my days are spent conducting research on what makes us empathetic towards others, rather than actually acting on this.

I first want to share with you what my thesis research consisted of, which I have now began to carry on into a master's thesis. It might give you a little insight into how being kind towards others truly benefits you.. I know it's often said we feel nice after doing good for others but there are long term mental and physical health benefits to being able to emotionally relate and connect to the individuals around us.. Especially when you're helping someone who is hurting (such as trauma workers, the people my actual research is on).  We everyday face situations where our empathetic responses come into play. Empathy is our ability to understand and share the feelings of another, and is the basis of why we are kind and form helping relationships. Having certain empathetic traits that are other orientated (concern and perspective taking) showed to have a protective and positive impact on the well-being of the individual. Simply put, being kind by empathizing and helping others is a win/win for everyone.

Right, enough of my research, I could rant on about it for hours! For the challenge I thought about what I'd like to do... I feel quite nervous interacting with people at random, and not yet in my life do I have the money to spend on grand charitable acts. These are two big things that will stop people from believing they can do these sort of "random acts of kindness". Certainly not true, and I hope we can break away from that idea.
Here two acts I took part in to share and spread kindness:

Engaging Others
I work in customer service and with study participants, it is part of my job to be kind to these people (of course!) but really engaging people is another story. I found when I began to ask others questions and really listen to their answers they lit up. We smiled more at each other and in one case an older gentleman thanked me for talking to him as he was lonely on his travels. Being present in conversations and engaging with others, not just at work, can really brighten up days.

Donating Things You Already Own
I changed my diet a long time ago and I was left with a lot of food that was just sitting in our pantry. I was pleased to see this food not go to waste as we took four bags of non-perishable food to a Feed Nova Scotia location. With the holidays coming around it remains as important as ever to donate. Secondly, sitting at my parents' home in the South Shore of Nova Scotia there were bags of clothing from my high school and early university days. For some reason I was holding onto them when they could be used by others. Off to the donation bins they went!

As a side note about the actual shirts gifted from BeHuman that you see me wearing in the photos - they are super soft and they make me happy when I wear them. Their simplicity makes them the perfect go to t-shirt, they're extremely versatile. Check out their other clothing at www.behuman.me.

I would like to challenge my DEAR friend Colin to take part in this challenge. He is working as an audio engineer in Halifax (and starting to share this through his social media!) and I'd love to see him spread some kindness too :)

     
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Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Quick & Special Christmas Gift Ideas When You Don't Know What To Buy

 
Every year there's a few people we draw a blank on what to buy them. You want it to be something special, but not insanely over the top. Maybe they're someone who seems to have everything or maybe you don't know their tastes super well (family and work secret Santa's are the death of me), either way you're stuck. I have compiled a list of simple yet quality gift ideas that perhaps have not yet crossed your mind.
 
Sweater & Hat
 I know buying clothing for someone can seem scary but a sweater can be very plain, and it's very easy to make sure you buy the right size (just go for oversized and cozy). Pair it with a hat and it's the perfect little combo. The pictured sweater and hat can be found at Bluenotes and totaled only $26.
 
Holiday Candles
A holiday scented candle is always a good idea. I think it's special if they're from Yankee or Bath & Body Works, and for each of these brands of candles you can buy accessories to top off the gift. For example pictured is a snowflake rim that sits on your Yankee while burns. BBW has a lot of little holder for all sizes of their candles as well. If you're worried about scent just go for traditional Christmas picks like cinnamon or sweets.
 
Travel Mugs
Even if the person already owns a travel mug,it's never a burden to own more. These were both purchased at Starbucks and if you put some flavored coffee or tea inside it's a perfect little bundle.
 
Coasters
Ok, maybe it's just me and you'll all think I'm crazy but I absolutely love coasters. They're practical, home décor, and can be super cute and unique. This makes me believe they're a great gift idea (paired with a little something more like sweets). At Homesense you can find really unique kinds like the marble stone ones pictured, or you can hunt for vintage antique ones like the silver plated ones.
 
Local Artisan Jewelry Set
The bracelet and earrings pictured are from Beck & Boosh, I really recommend checking out their jewelry online. I think buying local or buying from an individual artisan really adds a special factor to the gift. Simple silver or gold pieces are easily a hit if this person wears jewelry. 
 
Perfume
So this is definitely a more personal gift, and you're going to want to have an idea of the sort of scent a person likes. I just think that giving perfume shouldn't be confined to only from your significant other. At places like Winners you can find extremely nice name brand perfumes at super reasonable prices. Versace and Agent Provocateur? Under $50 each at Winners. Both very simple and acceptable scents, not too sweet or florally.
 
Cocktail Shaker & Drink Mixes
This would be a cute gift to receive during the holidays because they can put it right to use and have some fun with it. All they need is some alcohol and ice and they're ready to try out some new drinks. I found this shaker vintage, and the mixes at Winners.

Gourmet Chocolates
I think everyone enjoys getting sweets but instead of the simple Pot of Gold or Quality Street why not go for something a bit more unique. Even if you can't find a name brand like Charbonnel et Walker, you can go to sweet shop and get hand made chocolates very easily. For any Haligonian's reading this, Gourmandises Avenue Chocolaterie is perfect for this.
 
Healthy Alternatives
I know a lot of people would much prefer some gourmet trail mix over gourmet chocolates (definitely not me). I wanted to share with you guys this Canadian brand "Hand Fuel", great for an athletic or adventurous person, or someone always on the go. They are @handfuel on instagram.
 
     
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Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Gift Inspiration: My Personal Christmas Wish List 2016

 
 

 
 
 


 
 
Personally I really enjoy looking at what others want for gifts, it helps me find gifts for others (who just can't decide what they want for themselves) or gifts I might ask from others if they're asking me for ideas. I know to some it might seem a little odd to be posting online, I promise this isn't a hint to anyone in my life.. given I don't believe any family or my boyfriend even bothers to read my blog, thanks guys! The above is a list of things I am lusting over, some big and some small. Christmas is a nice time to pick out a few things you wouldn't normally buy for yourself, I admit I have a little too much fun compiling those sort of lists. I hope this post gives you a few ideas :)

 
As a side note I am sad to say one of my cats spilled a large vase of flowers and their water all over my MacBook. I currently can't afford another laptop (#poorstudentprobs) but I hope to figure something out and get back to my regular posting soon. It's such a shame because my boyfriend and I just invested in the camera we had been saving a long time for.. and now we don't have anywhere to upload and store them! I may need to add a laptop to that wish list above.
 
Is there anything you're excited to give or possibly get this Christmas? Tell me in the comments below!
 
     
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Monday, 7 November 2016

Irresistible Me Human Hair Extension Review





Recently I received a new set of hair extensions from Irresistible Me Hair Extensions, I was super excited because my old pair was looking ratty and I was not a big fan of them in the first place (don't order off Aliexpress!). These extensions are human remy hair extensions. Today I'm going to review them for you, I am leaving out the initial photos of the package because I immediately gave them to my hairdresser to match for me. I definitely ordered the right shade, I just have a unique colour of blonde in my hair.. you fake blondes out there will feel me. I did not style the extensions, I wanted to show you how natural they look after being washed and how they're great for everyday wear. Usually with hair extensions you have to style them and your hair because it'll look very unnatural if not. These look great without any work at all. I'll be doing another post on before and afters and styles in the future. 

Just so you know I am not being paid to rave about these extensions, they just sent them to me and told me to share my thoughts.. I just happen to be entirely in love with them.

I received the Silky Touch 22", 200g extensions in shade #613. I was very surprised when I opened the package because there was a SO much hair, it seemed much more than 200g. My favourite thing right away was a four layer weft with 4 clips on it, I have never owned such a thick and full extension piece. Usually I ended up layering 4 separate 1 layer wefts on top of each other to get that full effect in the back.. but this set already does it for you! It makes putting in the extensions 10x easier. The next amazing part of this set is that there are 5 pieces of 2 clip wefts. This makes getting your entire head much easier, usually there are only 2-3 2 clip wefts in a set. The entire extension set comes with 10 pieces, I actually only use 6. This is a good thing because it means the hair is so thick and quality that I don't even need to use it all to make it look real. If I am going for a more intense look or style I can always use those extra pieces. 

As for the actual human hair extensions they are very silky, strong, and THICK. They are thick from the top to the bottom and I didn't need to cut off any thin sad ends like I usually do with extensions. They blend amazingly and the clips are very little and comfortable, much better than those bulky hard to hide sets. I truly could rave about this hair for hours but I think you would need to try them for yourself to really see what I mean. I'll always recommend this brand to my friends now, and I doubt I'll buy from anywhere else again! 


     
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Thursday, 20 October 2016

Benefit Cosmetics Collectable Holiday Gift Sets

In my opinion it's never too early to get started on Christmas shopping. When I received these these holiday gift sets I immediately began to build excitement for the holidays.. I know it's not even Halloween yet but I can't contain it! This holiday collection includes 6 gift sets, and one 12 day advent calendar. The theme of their sets this year doll-like girl empowerment, I'm definitely into that and the cartoon characters are definitely a unique packaging scheme. I was very surprised by the price on these, for how much product you get they're a great price. It would be hard not to pick one up for myself when buying them as a gift, they're the all in one gift package for a makeup lover. 

Sassy Lassie - around $35 and exclusively sold at Sephora this kit contains THREE full sized products and comes in a collectable tin. This gift set is filled with Benefit's best selling products Roller Lash, The POREfessional, Ka-BROW!, and a mini Hola bronzer with a brush (hardly a mini, it'd take me months to get through that much product). 

Girl-A-Rama - around $45 and sold exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart this little tin is packed full of products. The kit contains all items necessary for a full-face makeup look including a full sized They're Real! Duo ShadowBlender in Brazen Bronze with applicator, and travel sizes of POREfessional, Roller Lash, Benetint, and CORALista & Rockateur blushers with a brush. The only thing that I dislike about this is though I can remove the blushers and eyeshadow they don't come in packaging to come out and throw in a makeup bag.. but this is common for all gift sets. 

Girl O'Clock Rock - around $56 and sold exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart, this is a 12 day advent calendar loaded with minis! For photo purposes I opened three doors and they contained Dandelion blusher, They're Real! mascara, and Ultra Plush Lipgloss in Lollibop. I doubt I will make it to December 12th to start opening doors, I'm not sure how anyone would wait to open them at all! I don't think this necessarily needs to be an advent calendar, if you give it as a gift it'd just be fun to pop open the doors and see what's inside. I will also add when you open the doors the box sings to you, it was a bit scary at first!

Let me know below if any of you will be buying a kit for yourself or as a gift! Also - what do you think of their packaging this season? 


     
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*These items were gifted to me from Benefit cosmetics but all opinions above are my own.
Wednesday, 12 October 2016

NYX Lip Lingerie Review & Swatches


I have been trying to get my hands on these lipsticks for MONTHS. I saw a lot of people using these lipsticks in the US but couldn't find them in stores in Canada. Finally Shoppers Drug Mart and Lawtons now carry the line! I got my hands on three shades: Embellishment, Bedtime Flirt, and Baby Doll. As you can tell the names stick with the "Lingerie" theme, and the shades do too. They're all faded pinks, nudes, browns, and purple/grey shades. 

Much like Lime Crime Velvetines or Kylie Lipkits, these are liquid to matte formulas. They do tend to show EVERY SINGLE crease on your lips, so unless you have lip fillers or naturally puffy lips I suggest exfoliating and moisturizing your lips before every wear. I find all liquid to matte formulas a bit uncomfortable, it does feel like a solid thing sitting on your lips but the colour and look make it worth it. I know the upclose photos make you really see that, but that's honestly how liquid lipsticks wear and that's not how close people actually are to your lips. Personally I like mixing these shades together, since Embellishment is a little much for my skin tone if I mix it with Baby Doll it makes the nicest pink-grey shade. 

These lipsticks are a great alternative to the pricey ones currently on the market. To be honest the shades they carry are way better and more practical than most others. You can buy these for 9 dollars Canadian each. I don't even believe a lipliner is crucial to getting these on well, so even less cost. 

Have you tried any of the Lingerie Lipsticks yet?

     
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