31 days to a prettier 2017 : find your beauty spirit monster …

January 9, 2017By stephanie

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With January signalling a time for change and evolving yourself, it is always good to have related visuals to your direction or goal to inspire and guide you. For example, I want to be fitter this year, so my current Instagram feed is nothing but before and after photos of women who really got into and did the work to be healthier and happier. You may want to cook more, so perhaps you’re pinning recipes on Pinterest. Or maybe, you want to quit your 9 to 5 and your Flipboard is lined up with articles about entrepreneurship.

Having a vision keeps your end goal in reach …

Day 9 : January 9

Find your beauty muse … or as I like to call it, my beauty spirit monster.

Whether you want to be glammed out on the daily like Kat Von D, or beachy and bronzy like Jennifer Lopez, or naturally imperfect like a Parisian girl … it’s always good to study the look. Following someone’s beauty evolution and style isn’t about copying their makeup from magazine and calling it a day. Rather it’s more like learning about the products they love and the techniques they (or their makeup artist) use and that work for them, to grow your own look.

Having one or two beauty muses can encourage you to try new colours or techniques, and bring you out of your comfort zone. It can prevent you from getting stuck in a beauty rut as well which is the quickest way to age you faster.

If you don’t already have Pinterest, it is a great tool to collect images of your chosen style muse, products you want to try and also, how-to articles on almost any makeup technique you want to try. If you have a 20-minute bus ride home, you would be surprised at how much pinning you can do.

Happy celeb hunting!

TIP : Images can help you shop better as well. Having images of a celeb’s look on hand when you hit a beauty counter can help the makeup artist determine what products and colours will work for you to achieve the same look and style.

HOMEWORK : If you love a good old magazine and have tonnes of them lying around BUT also know its time for them to hit the recycling bin, then grab a bottle of wine, park yourself in front of your pile and start ripping out photos of your beauty spirit monster. You can even tear out pages of makeup you’re interested in. Once your done with one magazine, toss it in your blue bin and move on to the next. Collect your images in a file folder for future reference.

31 days to a prettier 2017 : eat better for your skin …

January 6, 2017By stephanie

It’s FRIYAY! You’ve made it almost a week following this plan. Give yourself a pat on the back homies!

Today, I want to talk about something non-makeup, but also something everyone hates to talk about : dietary plans and restrictions. Boo to me, huh? But wait – please please please don’t click away.  Please?!?!

Day 6 : January 6

A great way to be prettier in 2017 is to start taking care of the inside as much as you do the outside. Makeup, lash extensions and a great brow job is the easiest way to always be pretty in a moment’s notice, but imagine looking a little bit prettier from the moment you wake up, or the second you wash away your contour and highlight. It can be done …

Just by incorporating a few dietary habits … such as :

  • Drink more water. This has been proclaimed time after time, but much easier said than done.  Regardless, make a conscious effort to drink more H2O throughout your day.Smiply try upping your intake by one extra glass. 
  • Limit sugar. I’m a KitKat chick and I need my break from time to time, so I’m not going to sit here and tell you to cut out all sugar. Again, like your water intake, why not reduce the amount of sugar you take in. Perhaps it is as simple as eating two sticks from a Kit Kat bar rather than all four; or having a soft drink or pop with just one meal a day and not all three.
  • Find a superfood that tastes good to you and indulge in it. I hate Kale and am not able to replace kale chips for real chips – that’s just dumb. But I do like blueberries and raspberries – both of which contain great antioxidants for the skin and body. I’ll drizzle a handful over a breakfast parfait or on a waffle – no problem.
  • Cut out some sodium. Go for the green capped (low sodium) bottle of soy sauce instead of the red capped (full blown soy sauce) when indulging in sushi. Pick lightly salted Lays instead of your favourite salted and seasoned bag. Season your chicken or fish with other tasty herbs and spices before adding salt.

There are plenty plenty more, but I’m stopping here before you stick me with a shiv. Google and take notes and make small changes one by one. Your skin will improve within weeks of making some beneficial dietary changes.

Happy noshing …

TIP : Don’t cut out everything all at once. That is totally setting you up to fail. Choose one or two manageable changes and stick with it for at least 1 week before adding another.

HOMEWORK : Read more about getting your skin in shape by following this 15 day guide to better skin from our sister company, fresh.beautiful : the skin studio.

31 days to a prettier 2017 : don’t neglect your hands and feet …

January 4, 2017By stephanie

Being pretty isn’t just about your face … well, it has a lot to do with your face because that’s usually the first thing people see … but pretty is also about how you feel from head to toe. 

Anyway, I’m going to take it easy on you today. You’ve already cleaned out your makeup bag, found your perfect lipstick, and are on your way to see a brow specialist sooner if not later. Well done! You deserve a break and today’s task is easy as pie. SUPER easy.

Day 4 : January 4

Start the habit of moisturizing your hands and feet daily. Both pairs work hard for you every day … without them you wouldn’t be able to get around or manage with the ease that you … and so, they deserve a little pampering. Every night, add the ritual of massaging in lotion or coconut oil into your hands and feet before bed. Not only will it do wonders for your skin itself, but the massaging action – especially for the feet – will soothe and reduce the inflammation and swelling that they go through over the course of a long day. In addition, the act of taking the time to massage and decompress will mentally prepare your mind that it’s time to get some shut eye.

See – super easy, yes?

TIP : While massaging the hands and feet, apply pressure.  Not cutting of your circulation type of pressure, but a gently pressure that soothes pressure points.  Here’s a guide to pinpointing the pressure points located in your hands and feet.

HOMEWORK : If you can, take a moment to schedule in a manicure and pedicure in the near future … or at least make a point to treat yourself to one as soon as you can!

introducing : workshop wednesdays …

June 14, 2016By stephanie

I cannot believe that we are almost coming up to one year at the College+Ossington studio.  It wasn’t that long ago that we started off in a really small space that sat above Second Cup on Queen+John. We had the smallest window, and it was boiling hot come summer with no air conditioning. It was the perfect space to meet with clients one on one, but as the team and our supportive community grew, we needed a space to grow with us!

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Needless to say, our street level, spacious and bright studio in the Dufferin Grove has been a welcomed change. We have more space to meet with clients, offer skin treatments, and really be a part of the community.

To celebrate, we are officially introducing Workshop Wednesdays – the perfect way to get to know our community and give back to the community by welcoming people into our space, and sharing what we know and what we have to offer.

This coming June 22, 2016, from 7:30 to 9:30 pm, join us (and our sister biz, fresh.beautiful : the skin studio) for our first workshop – Mad about Masks – where we introduce you to one of the biggest selfie trends on Instagram : sheet masks. We’ll talk about how and why they work, how they differ from other masks, and the best way to apply them and soak up the benefits. And BONUS : don’t leave without a quick 5-minute makeover with a few tips and tricks on mastering summer-proof makeup!

Space is limited, so for more details and to reserve yourself a coveted spot, register at our Eventbrite page today! For more information, just email us (beautymail@blushpretty.com) or call us at 416.727.1754.

Hope to see you there!

-xx, s

try it : detox your face …

January 6, 2016By stephanie

I was perusing Twitter recently and came across a tweet of Behati Prinsloo with her hair pulled back in a ponytail and her face free of most makeup. The picture, taken a while back, showcases how Prinsloo went makeup free after spending days on end abusing her face with runway makeup. Looking radiant and aglow – is there a case for a “makeup detox”???

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Photo courtesy of Behati Prinsloo, @behatiprinsloo

Abso-freaking-lutely.

Whether you wear a full face daily with false lashes, or a variation of a five-minute face most days of the week, everyone’s skin can benefit from a makeup-free day. It doesn’t matter if you are diligent about washing it all off nightly and following it up with a tried’n’true skincare and repair regimen – aiming to go makeup free for a few days always does a body good.

I have had many brides with various skin issues go makeup free the week before their wedding and the results come walk down the aisle day are always noticeable in a very beneficial way. The pores are smaller, the texture is smoother, the tone is even, the skin is smoother. Making a conscious effort to let your skin return to ground zero and giving it room to breathe is like magic.

Here are my tips for detoxing your face …

Go deep! Whether you hit up your favourite spa for your favourite all out facial, or DIY it at home … start with a deep cleanse and repair. Wash your face. Exfoliate. Do a hydrating mask. Serum, eye cream, moisturize. Basically, you’re choosing the deluxe wash option complete with the rust-inhibitor at the carwash … except, you know, for your face.

Keep it simple. After you initial deep clean, keep your daily cleansing routine simple. Gentle wash, light moisturizer, and if you must, anything to treat any skin issues.

They can’t sit with you … unless their clean. Anything that comes near your face should be cleaned and disinfected. Pillow cases. Sheets. Workout headbands. Clarisonics. Sleeping masks. If they aren’t scrubbed clean – they can’t sit with you. And you know what – while you are at it … wash those makeup brushes. You may not be using them during detox but when you’re done, they’ll be waiting!

Stay away! I’m not going to tell you to avoid cupcakes and french fries because you are already foregoing makeup, why make it harder? Rather, just eat less sugar. Drink less sugar (soda, juice!). Go easy on the processed foods and the junk. Drink more water. Try a green smoothie. Switch from coffee to green tea once or twice. The focus is your face, not your diet … but if you have the strength – this does help!

Remain calm for 72 hours. Don’t wear makeup for at least three days.  I’ll give you bonus points for five days. Look gorgeous if you wait seven.

There you go – my steps for a makeup detox face. It’s the start of the new year … so why not?

-s-