Monday, 12 December 2011

Holiday Gift Ideas :: Giving Twice as Much

With the Holidays coming closer and closer, here are some tips in which you can get some goodies to friends and family, whilst giving back at the same time and helping those who are less fortunate or in need of help.

Every year during the holidays, I know MAC has a few items out that help support men, women and children living with and affected by HIV/AIDS globally. Also don't forget they also have their year-round MAC VIVA Glam collection that also helps benefit HIV/AIDS victims. All proceeds will go to the MAC AIDS Fund.

Viva Glam Melt Your Heart Lip Bag - $36USD

Kids Helping Kids Tree Teddy
Holiday Ornament - $18USD

Illustrated by children affected by HIV/AIDS
Kids Helping Kids Holiday Gift Cards
$10USD for 6 Cards + Envelopes

Links of London also teamed up with FEED this year. It's a little price than the other items mentioned here at $125USD and is available at the Links of London website. FEED is dedicated in fighting child hunger around the world. Every purchase of a bracelet helps donate meals to individuals of need. On the sterling silver adornments on 5 of the 6 bracelets will have the word "FEED" engraved on it and a number on the back that indicates the amount of meals that will be donated with the purchase of the bracelet. I think I read somewhere that 50 meals will be donated per bracelet! My personal favourite is the bracelet with the silver dove on it ^___^ (see at the website!)

TOMS is a shoe brand which promises to give a pair of TOMS shoes to a child in need in 3rd world countries with every purchase made. They also have some really cute sparkly ones! It's like gifts for 2 for the price of 1! Prices range depending on the style but they are typically $55CAD.

Aldo is another company that I'm also aware of that has charitable gifts for youth AIDS relief. I'm not quite sure what it is this year, as the website isn't updated since 2009 for the AIDS section, but I've previously purchased dog tags and jewelery from them to help fight against AIDS. Just stop by the store and see what they have! ^___^ Typically Aldo charity items don't cost more than $10USD. The tote bags that they showcase online are only $3!

Lastly, don't forget about your local hospitals. I know hospitals around this time usually have nice gifts to help raise money for their foundations. Previously, I've received a sterling silver heart chain bracelet to support the Vancouver General Hospital. Another example are Bravery Hearts which are sold by the Hospital of Sick Children which help support children with life threatening illnesses. What's really meaningful is that each bead on the Bravery Heart necklace/bracelet, represents a child's medical journey. A child is given a bead for each of their treatments (ranges from chemo to surgery) to place on a string to commemorate a milestone. It's a sad, but goes to show how strong these kids are! Bravery Hearts are not just sold at SickKids, but are also sold at various hospitals in Canada and the USA. If there aren't any hospitals near your area, you can also get Bravery Hearts online. Necklaces are $23CAD and bracelets are $18CAD. [Note: you don't get a child's actual bracelet/necklace - they keep their own!]

Happy Holidays!
elle xx

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Review :: Sephora's 500 Point Dior Bracelet & Dior Addicted 2 Life Perk

Hi Everyone!

I hope everyone is having a good week. My week is particularly busy so this post will be quick :)
Today in my e-mail inbox I got a notice to pick up the Dior Charm Bracelet and Addicted 2 Life Deluxe Fragrance Sample for 500 points at Sephora. Now, I think some of the point perks are not worth the points, this included, but it is one of Sephora's better perks. The other perks I recall that I thought were somewhat (not not really) worth the 500 points was the time they gave out the full sized Benefit Coralista and a sample size of the Bad Gal Lash set and the Benefit Eyeshadow Palette. I got the Coralista, but I didn't get the Benefit Eyeshadow Palette unfortunately cause at the time I was convinced not to get it.

However, without further a do here's the newest 500 Point Perk! I hope this finds those who are contemplating getting it in time to help you make a decision on to spend or not to spend those 500 precious points! (Those points aren't cheap you know!)

And here's a closer look at the bracelet on both sides of all the charms:

I don't think its a bad product for its "price" considering it is an authentic piece of Dior jewelery - but that's subjective. I am the type of person who is more willing to spend more for jewelery that being said. However, from my experience, premier designer jewelery is always marked up at least 300%.

However, if you are to look at this from a purely financial stand point, ignoring the fact that it is Dior branded, I don't really think its worth it. If you think of the Hello Kitty 100 Points Deluxe Fragrance Sample and deduct 100 points off the price of 500 points for this set to account for the fragrance (which is generous), this makes the bracelet 400 points. That means you have to spend $400 in Sephora to get the bracelet. Considering a pair of earrings from a contemporary designer brand such as Marc by Marc Jacobs is approximately $55 and your hoping that the points are giving you a "10% discount" from regular items then $40 should be the estimated value of the bracelet. Now that I own this bracelet... I don't really think its worth $40 (Probably $10 being generous, but like I said before there is an upmarket of at least 300%), but its definitely better quality than Forever 21 Jewelery. It does have a nice slight weight to it and the silver plating of whatever material is made out of is smooth. I have yet to wear this bracelet out yet so I can't talk in terms of wear (and how the material alloy reacts with water) and how the toggle clasp is (as I know some toggle clasp bracelets are terrible including high end ones like Tiffany & Co). I would assume its fine since the toggle is quite thick in comparison to the ring and to be safe I would keep the bracelet away from any source of moisture or water. I hope my "financial" analysis/critique makes sense.

But all in all, the item is more or less "free" with your purchase of beauty goods at Sephora - which is better than nothing at all.

I hope this helps any individuals on the fence to decide. I do advise you to pick it up quickly cause point perks tend to run out within a day or two (like that one time I decided not to get the Hello Kitty 100 Point Perfume Deluxe Sample and couldn't get it the next day =w='').

And to be super honest... I just saw the e-mail blast and ran to my local Sephora to get this without thought like any crazy girl would do over pretty stuff. Hahahaha. It's almost equivalent to my friend lining up 12+ hours to get his hands on the H&M x Versace line. But to be fair he was one of the first people in line and got everything he wanted... and in hindsight I was silly not to ask him to help me pick up a ring or something that was $20 which would have a much higher resell value on eBay had I decided not to keep it.

Thanks for reading!
elle xx

Monday, 14 November 2011

Haul :: Shiseido/NARS Warehouse November 2011

Hey Everyone!!!

I hope everyone had a good weekend! I didn't do much this weekend except attend a conference and went warehouse-ing at the Shiseido Warehouse! I wanted to go to the Nine West and the Petite Feet Warehouse, but I figured since I'm not free on Thursday, which was the VIP day, my chances of getting my hands on a pair of Rozas is next to none. I'll go next time as they stock up on them each warehouse {I hope they don't stop for next time! *knock on wood*}. For those who are Toronto warehousers, don't forget that Lisa's Cosmetics is reopening on November 19th, 2011!

I went on Sunday (the last day) at 2PM (an hour before closing) so I'm sure a lot of the merchandise was gone. I (sometimes) do this during warehouses cause:

{ Warehouse Tips }
1. It limits how much I can buy when I have hours and hours to shift through merchandise
2. Less wait time for the entrance line
3. Less people - since all the eager beavers usually try to get into the warehouse at opening

Anyways, here's the haul!

(L-R; T-B :: Shiseido Self Tanner, NARS Multiple Duo, NARS Eyeshadow,
NARS Lipgloss Duo in Orgasm & Hustler, NARS Lipgloss in Sunset Strip,
NARS Mini Lip Duo, Shiseido Lipstick, NARS Eyeshadow Palette,
NARS Eyeshadow, 2x NARS Lipsticks, NARS Multiple in Beverly Hills)

{ Prices }
Shiseido Self Tanner - $15
Blushes/Multiples - $15
Eyeshadows - $8
Lipgloss Duos - $10
Lipglosses - $8
Lipgloss Mini Duo - $8
Lipsticks - $10

L-R T-B :: NARS Orgasm/South Beach Multiple Duo
NARS Exotic Dance Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Mousson Cream Eyeshadow
NARS Corfu Cream Eyeshadow

L-R :: NARS Tzigane Lipstick
NARS Transeurope Express Lipstick
Shiseido P18 Lipstick

Swatches :: Transeurope Express, Tzigane, P18

I originally purchased the self-tanner because I thought it was a bronzing product and just grabbed it to "even out" my skin tone on my legs... It turns out its not the product I was hoping for when I gave it a closer look. I'll probably give t to one of my sun-addicted friends.

Anyways, I hope this is a helpful reference for those who hope to go in the future!

Thanks for reading!
elle xx

PS: I got 33 followers! Yay! Thank you all for following me! It makes me really happy and means a lot to me! ^_____^♥

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Review :: NARS Holiday Limited Edition Danmari Blush Palette - Close Up Look

Hello Everyone!!!

So for everyone that's not up to date with the beauty-sphere in the blog-o-sphere, Sephora is having their annual Friends & Family 20% off sale to individuals who qualify for their VIB! Anyways, since my mum and I share the same Beauty Insider card it's quite easy for us to remain on the VIB list! I live a block away - a 10 minute walk - from a Sephora (terrible...) so I jumped at the chance to get one of the items I've been keeping my eye on! I also picked up a couple of mascaras and foundations for my mum ^-^.

Anyways - to the star of the show! The NARS Danmari Blush Palette! It retails for $70CAD. The price may seem steep, but the price is a deal considering the palette consists of the six most popular NARS blushes, including the infamous Orgasm! I got the 20% discount on top of that so after doing some math it works out to be $10.53 per blush after tax which is AWESOME ($9.33 before tax). It's truly something for people who wear blushes or makes a amazing gift! I only have one NARS blush (Deep Throat) and it wasn't featured in this palette... so score! Do note that the blushes are 75% of the original size, however I'm not the one to finish a blush or any eyeshadow so I don't really mind. However for those of you who are blush munchers, keep this in mind that you will not be getting a full sized product! BUT. All I gotta say is you have to get yourself one if you don't already own these colours and want to try them out. Maybe even get one for a friend... or your pet! Or my turtle (she actually has red spots on her cheeks so I guess she doesn't need it...)!

Unfortunately, this is a limited edition product as it was released with the NARS Holiday Gift Sets. So if you want this product... its time to pounce! I expect this product to be extremely popular especially at the F&F Sale going on at Sephora now! Being the enabler I am, I say buy it now and return it later so you don't regret it!

On to the part everyone cares about the most! Pictures!

The Holiday Gift Set Packaging present on all the NARS gift sets! Very sleek!!!

What you see when you first open the box

NARS Blush Heaven!!!

Better look at the blushes without the NARS plastic

Close up of the blush glory!
(L-R; T-B: Hungry Heart Duo II, Orgasm, Desire, Casino, Super Orgasm, Sin)

Back with the names of the blushes. (Does anyone notice how all of the
blushes except one is made in Canada? *Canadian Pride* :P)

I'll post swatches once I use it (does anyone delay using their new makeup products just to bask in the glory of a new product or am I just weird @___@''?).

I hope you enjoyed the post as much as I enjoy having this palette!!! *does a happy dance*

Thanks for reading,
elle xx

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Event + Travel Blog :: Paris Trip + Paris Fashion's Night Out

Bonjour mes amies!

So back in the beginning of September, I took a vacation in Paris with my parents. It was a short but fun, sweet trip lasting five days. It was especially nice since we were able to find a short stay apartment to live in that is located right behind the flagship Christian Dior off Avenue des Champs-Élysées - right in the middle of all the action on Fashion's Night Out! The food was amazing and the fashion (especially on the streets) was even better! I could bore you with all the little details of the trip, but I think pictures speak louder than words.

Paris's most iconic tower

Self-Portrait in a Chanel Window
Hollister Shirt, Danier Jacket, Aritzia Shorts

Huge Louis Vuitton!

Duck Dinner at George V

Laduree - famous bakery + restaurant!

Baked goods at Laduree

Limited Edition Cherry Chocolate Cake

Outside Laduree

Laduree Packaging for 8 Macaroons


On top of Printemps Mall for Lunch

Mmmm... Pasta!

Strawberry Shortcake

Bubble Man at Riverside

FNO Ticket!
Danier Leather Jacket, Aritzia Dress,
Christian Louboutin New Simple 120 Pumps

Mum & Me at Jimmy Choo x FNO

Chanel x FNO

Inside Chanel!

Wearing Vogue FNO Shirt :p

Thanks for reading! Happy back to school everyone! (Which sadly means my posting will most likely be slowing down too)
elle xx

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Haul :: My First Tous!!!

Yesterday, I purchased my first Tous item ^w^!!! It wasn't planned and purchased it quite spontaneously after visiting the Tous Flagship store at the mall. These are the sterling silver onyx Tous Bear earrings in large. Here are some close up photos of the packaging and the item! It's all so gorgeous!

The Bag

All Wrapped Up!

Close Up of the Elastic & Sterling Silver Bell! (Bears on the Bell!!! <3)

The Box Itself

Earring + Butterfly - which is also shaped like a Tous Bear!!!

Sterling Silver Onyx Tous Bear Earrings in Large

All the Packaging - Box (with connected elastic & bell) & Dustbag

Bottom of the Box with the Tous Logo Embossed

Thanks for reading & visiting!! :)
elle xx