fresh year, fresh start: the green

January 4, 2013By stephanie

Alright. So I have spent the week chatting you up with new base products, lip colours, blushes, liners, and mascaras. A whole bunch of items you can either add to your kit or create a whole new one with (the latter sounds so much more fun, doesn’t it?). But here is something to think about: greening your routine …

I know. It is hard to give up on your hard-working, quality, lush, not-so-green products. They work for you. They last long and stay put throughout the day. They make you feel great about yourself. Why change? It’s true – nothing can really replace that red lip color you have loved for years. Or the cleanser that has kept you clear since high school. I get it. But I also know that choosing better products for your skin, health and for the environment is in the back of your mind too. You want to try but don’t know where to begin. With the onset of many new and independent brands, you aren’t sure what really works and what doesn’t. Lastly, some of those green brands can be a bit pricey! Believe me I know.

So how about for the new year, you aim to switch out or incorporate one (or two if you’re an over-achiever) organic beauty product to your routine? Manageable, right? Easy on the budget, yes? Here are some suggestions.

rms beauty “un” cover-up

Since we use base products ALL over the face, it makes sense to try and green yourself here first. After all, what you put on your skin goes IN your skin. With four colours in the range, you can find a colour that suits you best or mix to match. Lightweight and creamy, this “un” cover-up blends easily and hides imperfections well. You can also layer to build coverage. In small clear pots, a little bit goes a long way! Available at The Detox Market and online.

S.W. Basics of Brooklyn Cleanser

Imagine a product with no more than five ingredients that takes off your makeup and cleans the face with the swipe of a cotton pad. Repeat: five ingredients. All organic. Stop imagining and just try it. So easy to use and so gentle on the skin, this cleanser removes dirt, makeup (even mascara) and grime with ease. Nighttime cleaning has never been breezier. Just moisten a cotton pad and wipe the skin, rinse with water. You are done. Available at BlushPretty. (Ahem)

Ilia Beauty Lipstick

Before, you could only find organic lipsticks in very sheer shades of everyday basics and neutrals. That was before. With Ilia, you can find brighter pinks and deeper reds. Complete with long wear and a creamy, no drag, application these lipsticks provide all the pigment you need for bold lips. No more worrying about how much lead is in your lipstick and how much of it you are consuming … there are options out there for you! Available at Jacob+Sebastian and The Detox Market.

So this ends our fresh year, fresh start series … What do I have in store for you next week? Well, I suppose you will just have to come back …


fresh year, fresh start: the wink …

January 3, 2013By stephanie

It is no secret. The ladies love mascara. Actually, they love long lush lashes that hit there glasses when they wear them. Ask ten ladies and I bet at least six of them will tell you that if they could only bring one beauty item with them to a deserted island where they would get to make out with Ryan Gosling, Ryan Reynolds, or some other good-looking Ryan … It would probably be mascara.

So let us not underestimate the power of a heavy lash. Here are some picks that BP is loving right now!

Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real Beyond Mascara

Every girl loves the look of lash extensions or fake lashes, but pull back from actually investing in extensions (it is a lifestyle choice – you have to change a bit of your routine) or wearing fakes (what if they fall off midday?). This is the next best thing. We are talking volume, separation and noticeable length. I have the sparsest, teensiest, meekest of lashes and this mascara makes me feel much much better about myself. A couple of coats does the trick for me and I see curl and lift. I love pairing this with heavily lined eyes. Available at Shoppers Drug Mart and Murale.

COVERGIRL Clump Crusher Mascara

I am a big fan of most of the mascaras out out there by COVERGIRL (LashBlast Luxe anyone?) and their newest is no different. Clumping is a huge problem for, oh, I don’t know, 97.5% of us and this mascara helps to eliminate such disasters. Let’s face it – just a few strokes of a sub-par mascara can lead to spider lashes in as little as three strokes. With Clump Crusher, I can get to about six strokes and still have volumized but full, tangle free lashes. The curved comb takes some getting used to if you are accustomed to brush mascaras, but it does work! Available at your favourite drugstores.

YSL Mascara Effet Faux Cils Shocking

Okay. Let’s not act like I can pronounce the name of this mascara properly and all cute … I just call it YSL’s Shocking Mascara. So much easier. Again, this mascara is all about volume for me. Volume Volume Volume. But the added bonus is the colour selection. While black is everyday all day, sometimes, when you want to go a little bare but still have the element of surprise – its in the mascara. They have this formulation in a plum, a blue and a green tint and I think its a great twist on taking on 2013’s beauty trend of emerald and blue lined eyes. If wearing liner is daunting for you … then add the colour to your mascara. Available at Murale and Holt Renfrew.

Up next: the clean and green …


fresh year, fresh start: the kiss …

January 2, 2013By stephanie 4 Comments

It is officially 2013 and if you spent your New Years Eve properly it started off with a kiss – whether it was a a loving peck with mom, dad, or a BFF, or a hot and heavy session with a significant other, or a soon to be significant other! (wink wink).

Kissing, eating, talking – our lips have all the power, don’t they? So why not dress them up to match …

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Moisturising Colour Balm in Heftiest Hibiscus

If you are a fan of the moisturising and hydrating effect of Clinique’s regular colour balms, but crave more oomph, then the Intense line was probably made for you. With a complete range of colours from nude to deepest grape, these sticks come packed with all the same benefits but about 10x the colour impact. I love the look of Heftiest Hibiscus against clean flawless skin – it just brightens up the day. But don’t be afraid to try Mightiest Maraschino or Plushest Punch. Available at select Shoppers Drug Marts, The Bay, Sears and Sephora. (They are also crazy affordable at just $19 each!)

Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet in L’Exuberante

Red is always a staple and yes, its definitely on trend for 2013 … but right alongside the best reds are hot neon like pinks. I have plenty that I love, but I have my eye on L’Exuberante by Chanel. Its matte texture doesn’t look garishly glossy but the Chanel formulation doesn’t leave your lips tight and dry either. And c’mon, what is not to love about Chanel? Again, pair this bright lip with flawless skin and steal a winged line from your regular winged liner/red lip look. Available at Holt Renfrew, Murale and my favourite store to buy Chanel: Le SaSa

Christian Dior Rouge Dior in #786

I am comfortable wearing red, orange and the brightest of pinks, so when looking for a lippy to take me out of my same old same old, I found this: Mysteriously Mauve, #786, Christian Dior. It is a really deep purple in the tube … almost scary … but swiped on, it becomes a little more pink, a little more wearable, but still obviously purple. The formulation is creamy and doesn’t feather or travel. Available at select Shoppers Drug Mart and Sephora.

And if you must go nude, neutral, or safe …

Okay, okay – I get it. Some of us just like keeping it cool. If you are going to go out and get yourself a wearable next to nude lip, then I will suggest MAC Myth. It’s a light neutral nude loved by many and works with most skintones. Also check out Bobbi Brown in Uber Beige, NARS in Belle Du Jour, and Clinique’s Curviest Caramel.

Tomorrow: the wink …


the fresh list: new at BlushPretty …

December 21, 2012By stephanie

Nothing is more exciting than when we receive new stock at the studio. I am so pleased to announce that we have brought on three more brands at the boutique and I bet you will love them.


We actually received LippyGirl about two weeks ago and when the team comes in and starts to play with the testers, they go bonkers. These vegan lipsticks provide all the colour you want but all the natural goodness you know is best for you. With a selection of favourable and wearable colours, you are bound to find a colour that suits you. We are honoured to be one of the only boutiques in Toronto to carry this Vancouver based brand, so do stop by to find your perfect vegan lip colour. We are loving Fancy Pants and Boss Lady!


Face Oils are the not so newest way to hydrate and treat the skin, but some beautythusiasts are skeptical (wouldn’t oil makeme MORE oily???) If you aren’t on board yet, buy your ticket and jump on. We’ll be your guide and chat you up about how and why face oils work and to prove our point, we are bringing in a small selection of Toronto powerhouse Pure+Simple’s top oils. Stay connected in the new year as well when we plan to carry their brilliant face powders and concealers. Promise!

SW Basics (formerly Sprout)

EEK! We are equally over the moon about this one and we think you will be too. This brand, recently featured in O Magazine and name dropped by Gwyneth on keeps its ingredients list to just 5 natural ingredients. Yeah … just five. As you may (or may not, but now you do) I love NYC (two trips twice a year) and now, I have brought a little bit of NYC home. Based out of Brooklyn, SW Basics is gentle for the skin but gets the job done. We will be carrying their cleanser, toner and their makeup remover starting today and in the new year plan to expand.

So there you go – plenty of reasons to visit me at the studio. We will be open on the 27th and 28th (Boxing Week deals folks) and throughout the start of January. Also, feel free to check out as of December 22, 2013 when our Sprout and Pure+simple products will be available online!

Happy shopping and Ho Ho Ho!


the fresh list: the lipstick edition … with a scrub for good measure.

October 12, 2012By stephanie

Another week come and gone! We are slowly moving from Early Fall to Late Fall.

I’m  not sure what you have written into your Daily Timer (as my dear senior makeup artist Meredith calls her archaic handwritten agenda system) for this weekend, but I can sure add some items to your shopping list.

Now normally when Fall rears its beautifully coloured head of foliage, I like to reach for a heavier dose of eyeliner but during a recent trip to Murale and several unnamed, unscheduled visits to shopping malls around the GTA throughout the week, I couldn’t help but pick up lipstick after lipstick after lipstick.

At Murale, Holt Renfrew and select Sephoras, you can find the latest from Bobbi Brown – her new creamy matte lipsticks which are just that – a matte finish with a creamy application. No tugging and no drag she has 12 new colours to offer.  They are all her signature in very neutral, easy to wear colours, but also are on trend with pops of orange, pink and of course a red. I picked up Valencia Orange (which is less red than her Orange lipstick) and True Pink. I was eyeing Razzberry and Red Carpet … but maybe next time!

Caryl Baker Visage very kindly sent to me a selection of products from their Uptown Girl line earlier in August/September 2012 and just recently their Kiss from the Cure promotion. And that means MORE LIPSTICK! Both Morning After (a deep rose) and Kiss for the Cure (a reddish-brown-berry) are sheer and creamy and can suit most skintones. But the best feature of these lipsticks are the packaging. Each lipstick case comes with its own built-in mirror for easy touch-ups on the go.

And  never one to pass a NARS counter unscathed … I did pick up a new velvet matte lip pencil – but only to replace the one I sharpened down to a nub. The current lipstick trend are the deep dark burgundys and reds, so I replenished my Damned pencil and stopped myself from doing any more damage. I really like the darker lip this season, but prefer the colours to be more matte than glossy and sheer. I find these pencils the best way to achieve that balance.

Ugh – and as we near the end of wedding season, that means lipsticks in the kit ALSO need to be replenished. A quick walk over to but a long stay in MAC meant I picked up some of my bridal faves including Modesty, Hue, Velvet Teddy and Fast Play. Hands down, MAC offers a great selection of lipsticks for makeup artists at a reasonable price thanks to the MAC pro card. Thank you MAC.

So enough about lips – here’s the tip/trick/must have to wearing a bold lip and looking perfectly polished: great skin.

Dry, patchy and blotchy skin is never a good look when paired with look at me lipstick, so if you are thinking about wearing a different bold lip everyday, get started on refining and polishing the skin.  Korres recently sent me a selection of skincare products to try including their Wild Rose Daily Brightening and Replenishing Buff Cleanser along with the Wild Rose+Vitamin C Brightening Sleeping Facial. I use these two generously the night before a bold lipstick day and I wake up with a great canvas for center of attention lips. While the scrub can be used daily, I aim more for every other day if not less and that’s for one main reason: so I don’t run out of it toooooo fast! (Korres is now available at Shoppers Drug Mart too!)

Happy Shopping Friends!