throwback : the faux bob …

December 2, 2014By stephanie

The other day – my middle child, Callum – turned six years old.

As with every passing birthday, regardless of any of my children’s age, I can’t help but feel nostalgic. And I sit here, after an awesome weekend of noisy screaming kids and a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Cake, flipping through all his pictures from birth until just yesterday, and in my “woe is me, my child is getting too big to love his mommy” stupor, I found this video.

In this video, I was actually pregnant with Callum. And I was just starting BlushPretty as a full-time, full fledged, small business (I was birthing two babies!) and more importantly, just starting to dabble in the hair side of things (as you can see by my product choices).

While I uploaded it to YouTube just a few years ago, it was filmed the summer just before his birth, so I was maybe 4, 5 or 6 months pregnant with him. So crazy.

Anyhow, this video still seems relevant given that the wavy bob and lob has recently been thrusted into the spotlight again, thanks to Lauren Conrad.

So here’s to achieving on trend hair even if just for a day … and to a little boy whom
I love way too much.



the perfect red : mrs. mia wallace …

November 10, 2014By stephanie

It seems to me that everyone is on the search for the perfect red lip(stick)(gloss)(pencil)(stain). I actually have plenty of red (or reddish) favourites, namely MAC’s Lady Danger, NARS Pop Life, NARS Red Square, NARS Cruella, NARS Rita, Bite Beauty Cranberry … and the list goes on …

All these reds are similar in some ways, and if you were to ask my husband, they are exactly the same … but what do boys know? (throw rocks at them!).

I get asked what red I’m wearing anytime I am wearing red, but the one red … the one lovely, perfect, stay put red that always garners a side eye … and the kind of side eye that says “you better watch your makeup bag, because I’m about to grab that lipstick from you …” is Urban Decay’s Pulp Fiction lipstick in Mrs. Mia Wallace.

I have istagrammed this lip color before, and even mentioned it on the blog previously. This lip colour is/was part of Urban Decay’s ode to the cult classic Pulp Fiction and it’s 20th anniversary of the film’s debut. The entire collection was inspired by the Queen B herself, Mrs. Mia Wallace.

I have worn this lip color to many bride’s and their wedding days, and guaranteed, SOMEONE in the bridal party will ask me what I’m wearing and state : that’s what I want. I have had Mothers of the Bride insist on having it. Bridesmaids glare at it in thievery.

A deep blood red, this lip color is insane. It looks great against many skintones. It’s not too matte, not too shiny. It has a great slip over the lips and stays all day. Should it wear off a bit it never looks garish … it’s perfect.

Now don’t get me wrong … there are other reds that are also perfect because you know, there are many tones of reds to be worn and each one is special … but as of late, this is it. This is the one you will find in my purse or coat pocket that I cannot live without!

So, your homework for this week : treat yourself and pick up Mrs. Mia Wallace … it’s still available on the Urban Decay website and select Sephora’s where the collection is still available.


quoted : elle canada …

September 19, 2014By stephanie

Since I started in makeup and hair many moons ago I have had tonnes of opportunities come my way, but I will never ever ever truly believe that media outlets like Hello!, Anokhi, or Elle Canada will seek me out to provide expert advice. So surreal …

I’m always super honoured and humbled to be asked.

Just this past week, editor Ava Baccari asked me for my tips and tricks for
brightening and beautifying tired eyes.

Check out the article here, and if you have any further questions – let me know!

Thanks so much to Elle Canada for asking me to participate. Always a pleasure.


so, like … you know!

June 27, 2014By stephanie

Many people weren’t sure if I had gone crazy or something,
but I assure you my decision was purely a sober and thought out one.

On Tuesday, I got a perm …

best decision. EVER.


the freelance life : karma is going to get you …

June 2, 2014By stephanie

illustration by the talented Joanna Pop …
(welcome to the blog Joanna!)

This past weekend, I got to spend time with one of my artists during a drive out to the west end and our conversations are never boring. We speak about it all, from personal to professional. We laugh, we vent … we have yet to cry in front of each other … but you get the idea.

Usually, our conversations visit professional mishaps and obstacles and this artist mentioned that she has yet to be paid for certain jobs where she has completed services. She isn’t alone, it’s happened to many, me included. I am flabbergasted that the non-paying clients/colleague/people in question wasn’t/isn’t/aren’t mortified or embarrassed enough to see that overdue payments are a serious issue.

Now, I cannot tell you how her story ends, as I don’t know … I’m not even sure it’s been resolved yet. But what I can tell you is that I believe in karma.

You’re probably wondering what karma has to do with the story above … here it is:

I believe in karma.
And I believe that what you put out into the world is what you get back.

As a freelancer, it’s easy to justify any action you take – good or bad – as part of the ups and downs of entrepreneurship, career building, getting ahead, and the freelance life. But just because you can justify it, doesn’t mean its right.

I’ve heard my share of stories :

  • the artist who refuses to let new up and comers to shadow her because she doesn’t want to help foster potential competition. bad karma : in an industry where your colleagues are quick to refer their peers when they are unavailable to take on a client, said artist gets shut out since goodwill is a two way street. She refuses to help others . Why would they send her business?
  • the artist who claims she can do hair in order to land the job. bad karma : she lands a big photoshoot but cannot create the hairstyle requested nor does she have the proper tools only to disappoint the photography team, model and client whom hired her … that’s like three bad karma returns. Needless to say, she was never booked again by that client.
  • the artist who books herself back to back to back without regarding time, location, and accessibility to each gig in order to earn more. bad karma : after being late to all bookings but the very first one for the day, bad reviews on popular sites like Yelp or even Twitter followed.

I think its important, as creative and success-driven individuals, that we treat everyone we come across with respect and humbleness (totally not sure if that’s an actual word, but I’m going with it!). Each action you take will impact the future of not only yourself but others. Therefore, your everyday goal is to start and complete every action you take with good intentions.

As a freelancer, here are some Karma and Business 101 Rules I tend to live by.

  • be helpful and be grateful
  • share your knowledge with others
  • pay it forward when you can

Going back to my story above, I remember saying to my artiend (artist+friend) that I believe BlushPretty grew on karma. The really good kind.  By being positive, respectful, and appreciative in all (positive and negative) situations presented to me as bp grew, I think I managed to build a positive growing business that I am really proud of.

When she turned to me and said “I believe that …” I smiled large.

I’m very happy I’m not the only person that believes that Karma rules.

Remember, everything you put out there, comes back …