Tuesday Favourites: September 3rd

My (Rather Well Used) Function Of Beauty Shampoo

Hey guys! Welcome back!

So, for this week, I figured I’d elaborate a little more on a product I wrote about after trying, but fell more in love with the more I used it. For those of you who have been following my blog for a while, you may remember when I posted my blog about Function of Beauty back in June. (If not, feel free to click the link and read all about it!). At the time, I gave it a week to test it out before sharing the results with you guys. I hadn’t switched hair products in years, and didn’t really consider how long it would take to start seeing changes being made — a week certainly wasn’t enough time to see full results.

However, two months later it’s safe to say I’ve now thoroughly tested out this product, and I love it. As in, I’m so sold I honestly don’t know that I’ll ever switch shampoo or conditioners again — and with Function of Beauty’s model, I probably won’t have to. When choosing your products, you select your hair type — including texture, structure and moisture, as well as your five main concerns you wish to see improvements in your hair. Meaning, if you see something you want to change, all you have to do is select a different concern more applicable to your current needs in your next batch!

On top of all this, you get to choose from a variety of scents and colours, truly customizing the products and making them your own. You even get to label the bottle with a nickname — everything about it makes it feel so personal and cute.

I heard about this brand months before I got the chance to test it out — I literally waited as patiently as I could for my old products to finally run out so I could give these a try. As I noted in my initial post, I certainly saw some immediate effects — enough to keep me interested in buying more. I wasn’t sure if it was just that I was so hyped up about trying out this brand, but at first even with the results given, I still felt it didn’t quite live up to my expectations.

Unfortunately, I sometimes tend to be a bit impatient. The fact that I saw immediate results, really, should have said it all. Two months later, my hair is the healthiest it’s been in — well, possibly forever. It’s smooth, shiny, and constantly looks the best it ever has. On top of that, even though its been a few months since I had a hair cut, my hair almost feels as fresh as if I had just returned from the salon — I have minimal problems with split ends and tangling, which is almost always a problem for me. Furthermore, my ends look just as healthy as my roots, which is a nice change from what my hair has been from the last few years (especially with all the bleaching I put it through) — fried at the top, and fried-to-straw at the bottoms.

This product, no joke, has transformed my hair. It is the most beautiful and healthy it’s ever been — I always envied girls with long, shiny, healthy hair, but for the first time in years my hair is finally transformed into one of my favourite features. Plus: their products are Paraben-Free, Sulfate-Free, Cruetly-Free and Vegan! This means these products are better for you, your hair, the animals AND the environment! It’s a win-win.

If this sounds like the change your hair has been needing, be sure to check out Function of Beauty here!

I hope you’re all having a lovely Tuesday!

Xoxo,

Meredith

Fall FabFitFun Unboxing!

My Fall FabFitFun Box!

Happy first day of September y’all!

So, to start off, I’d figured I’d give a little life update — after a couple of the most hectic weeks of my life, I’m finally moved into my new apartment! I’m far from being done and probably have a few more crazy weeks ahead, but after that things should hopefully settle down. However, I’ve survived it all so far so cheers to that!

Now, onto today’s blog (which I am so excited to share) — unboxing my fall FabFitFun box! These boxes are absolutely my favourite thing in the world, I look forward to the start of each new season just to see what’s inside. Not only is every product I’ve received so far amazing; I swear FabFitFun knows what I need in my life before I do.

In this particular box, I received so many items I had just run out of/was looking to go purchase, so needless to say especially with the move this makes my life A LOT easier right now. Keep reading to see what I received in this season’s box!

Amika Strand Perfect Ceramic Straighter

Ceramic Straightener by Amika

This is the PERFECT example of FabFitFun seemingly knowing my needs before I do. For years, I’ve only had a cheap old drugstore straightener which did a terrible job of straightening my hair. It felt damaging, caught and tore my strands as I used it and took forever to use even on the highest setting — and my hair is naturally pretty straight. I am SO excited to give this fancy new straightener a go — maybe I’ll even be able to master flat iron curls!

Twine Cheese Board And Plate

Twine Cheese Board

This plate is so cute and perfect for if you ever have guests over! It’s incredibly high-quality and looks super classy for wine nights with your girls. It is 100% what I was looking for in terms of kitchen gear and I cannot WAIT to get some use out of it!

Cosmedix Pure C

Cosmedix Pure C

I cannot wait to give this stuff a try! It seems like such a simple way to add some extra Vitamin C to your skincare regimen. Simply add the powder to your serum or moisturizer, and it adds a boost of Vitamin C to your skin! Cosmedix is a fantastic brand as well — we carried it at the spa I used to work at and the whole line is incredibly high-quality. So while I haven’t tested this one out yet, I know I’ll be in for a treat when I do.

AfterSpa Hair Towel Wrap

AfterSpa Hair Towel Wrap

Yet another great example of FabFitFun having my back — this hair towel is SO cute and just what I needed! I’ve had the same cheap towels since I first moved to Vancouver, and over the years they’ve began to fall apart. Moving seemed like the perfect time to replace them, but now I’ve been saved a trip. I’ve had a towel in this style before; it’s designed to fit over the back of your head, wrap up your hair and then fastens with a button to keep it all together. While I haven’t had one of these since high school, these towels are amazing for your hair — they’re comfortable and convenient. Onto of that, the towel fabric is clearly high quality AND it’s pink! So cute!

Wander Beauty Baggage Claim Gold Eye Masks

Wander Beauty Eye Masks

FabFitFun has introduced me to a whole bunch of amazing eye masks since I started receiving their boxes — but these are my favourites so far. They’re packed with all sorts of amazing ingredients, including hyaluronic acid. Within one use, I already noticed a significant change in my dark circles and eye area. You guys already know how much I struggle with my under-eye area, but these actually seemed to fix up all sorts of issues in just minutes. Plus, they’re super cute so when I had a surprise guest it wasn’t even embarrassing to be seen wearing them!

Aveda Damage Remedy Daily Hair Repair

Aveda Damage Ready Daily Hair Repair

Again, an example of FabFitFun knowing my needs. I had just ran out of my beloved Ryo hair mask, but this one arrived just in time for me to have to go mask-less. After one use alone I have to say, I’m pretty sold on this stuff. At first, the idea of leave-in treatment had me a little stressed — it sounded like something that would just leave my hair oily and gross. However, this stuff is non-coating and light, and I couldn’t believe how fantastic my hair felt after use.

Human + Kind Body Soufflé

Human + Kind Body Soufflé

While I haven’t had a chance to give this product a try, I’m beyond excited to! The ingredients in this moisturizer sound lovely, and I love a nice, light body cream — I’m really not a fan of heavier stuff as it often lingers and leaves a residue on my skin. I just used up the last cream I received in a FabFitFun box and it was one of the best products I’d ever tried, so I can’t wait to give this one a shot!

Harper + Ari Exfoliating Sugar Cubes in Juice Cleanse

Harper + Ari Exfoliating Sugar Cubes

The last item in my box — these exfoliating sugar cubes — are just another example of FabFitFun knowing exactly what I need. (See what I mean now? Out of seven products, four of them filled a direct need I’ve been having lately. I don’t know how they do it, but I’m impressed!). As many of you know, I’m a huge fan of exfoliating, however I just ran out of my Herbivore exfoliator and haven’t had the time to purchase a new one. These cubes are pretty cool — while I’ll admit I probably wouldn’t repurchase them myself, they’re small and make it easy to ensure you don’t overuse and waste product. They smell amazing and are packed full of ingredients to leave your skin moisturized. While I’m still pretty married to the Herbivore Amethyst exfoliator, this is certainly better than many other products I’ve tried and would definitely recommend it!

And that’s it for this season’s box! I love these boxes so much, not only do they introduce me to so many amazing products and brands, but they’re like a little gift to myself every three months. On top of all the amazing products they sent me, they come packed with all sorts of other little goodies such as gift cards, free boxes to send to your friends, and a magazine detailing all the products in your box! All in all, you get your money’s worth so many times over with these boxes as so many of these products are full-sized and quite expensive to purchase. I’m already beyond excited for next seasons box — my only complaint is that I have to wait three whole months to see it!

Happy fall, everyone!

Love,

Meredith

FUNCTION OF BEAUTY: Love It or Leave It?

Customized Shampoo and Conditioner – Function of Beauty

Hey guys!

So today I’m gonna be sharing my review of Function of Beauty’s customized shampoo and conditioner. I’m gonna do it in two parts — my immediate reaction as well as results after a week. I feel like shampoo/conditioner is the type of product where you have to wait and see results with time, so I want to be able to share both parts with you. I’ve been seeing ads for these products all over the web and have been waiting for my old products to use up for months before purchasing these, so I’m super excited to try it out!

So to start off, obviously these products are highly personalized and the results will vary depending on what you choose for yourself. For mine, I chose volumizing, strengthening, hydrating, shine, and root nourishing. For my hair type, I put fine, wavy and dry. As for scent, I went for pear — I love the ability to choose your scent so you can switch it up, but so far I have to say the pear scent is lovely!

Obviously, the real test will be how this stuff holds up to the weather in South East Asia, which at the time that I post this will be starting tomorrow (!!!) but I have faith. On top of the customizable aspect of these products, they’re also vegan, cruelty-free, sulphate-free and paraben-free, meaning that they’re both excellent for your hair, AND our planet.

First Impressions

Okay so after my first use, I have to say this stuff seems pretty legit. I’m always nervous about trying new stuff out on my hair, as it’s so damaged after bleaching it for so many years. However, the products certainly FEEL high quality, and there doesn’t seem to be anything weird happening with my hair yet. One thing that threw me off was how thick the shampoo was, versus how thin the conditioner was. I’ve been using the same shampoo and conditioner for about 4 or more years now, so I’ve gotten pretty used to their consistency. I was kind of worried the thin conditioner wouldn’t provide enough moisture for my dry ends, but so far it actually seems to have worked just fine. However, I guess we’ll just have to see how it goes over the next week!

One Week Later: Impressions

Okay, sorry about the delay with this post but this week has been crazy. Overall, my impressions with these products are still pretty great. My hair has increased in shine so much, as well as feeling nice, clean, and moisturized without feeling greasy at all. I do kinda find my hair has been looking (slightly, slightly) frizzier but I’m really not sure if it’s always been that way and I just noticed or not. Either way, it’s still so far so good with this stuff. If you’re looking to upgrade your hair routine, or have very specific hair needs, be sure to check this brand out!

Xoxo,

Meredith

My Experience Dyeing My Hair

Me as a blonde, December 2018

When it comes to hair, I’ve pretty much done it all. Cut it all off for cancer donation, had highlights, balayage, ombré, crazy colours, henna dyed it, you name it. But the biggest change I ever did was bleaching it blonde. I’ve since dyed my hair back to brunette, but I was a blonde for the last three years.

I really loved being blonde, but I also felt it was time for a change. I don’t even remember how and when I decided to go back to brunette, but once I decided it was a done deal.

Dyeing my hair blonde, however, was a seriously different process. It took me ages. My hair naturally is incredibly dark brown, which would already be tricky enough lightening to the extent that I did. I had an extra layer of difficultly added (literally), though, as I had previously been dyeing my hair with Henna dye.

I’ll take a little aside here to discuss a disclaimer on Henna as hair dye: it is absolutely NOTHING like other hair dyes, or henna tattoos. I’d encourage anyone considering it to do some research of their own, but I can discuss my experience here (as well as the fallout that came from me not doing any research whatsoever). At the time I was a young, bright eyed first year looking to do something to accentuate my newfound independence. However, I’ve always been somewhat rational in my time being free to do as I please so anything too radical (ie. tattoos, piercings) was kind of out of the question, as that kind of thing I personally would want to put a lot of thought into. When I saw Henna hair dye being sold at a store I won’t name, it sounded perfect. The salesperson hyped it up perfectly: all-natural hair dye that would turn my then-balayage locks a stunning ginger, as well as acting as a hair treatment. I was sold.

Me, after my first round of highlights to go blonde after Henna, December 2015

Henna works amazingly for some people, but there are downsides I was not aware of before I dove in head first. First of all: henna does not come out of your hair. Ever. The colour may fade, you may not be able to see it, but it’s there. If you’re doing it once, or have no intention of ever going lighter, this really doesn’t matter. But when I walked into the hair salon and asked to go blonde, I was shocked to find out that until all my henna-dyed hair had been grown out and cut off, the answer was essentially a no. I eventually started out slowly with highlights a few months later, but honestly, for almost the entirety of my first year blonde my hair always had a strawberry tint. Furthermore, the amount of bleach needed to hide the henna dye as best as my hair stylist could was immense. It totally fried my hair, and all in all it took about a year of highlights to get it to look “blonde”. Even for another few months, it was still dirty blonde at best.

Second of all — although significantly less important — henna is SO difficult to do. Its messy, its hard to apply and to prep, hard to wash out and keeping it in your hair for hours is honestly exhausting. If henna sounds right for you then don’t let this deter you (pain is beauty rings true for this one). But do your research first.

Anyways, back to the real matter at hand: bleaching my hair. I will absolutely never regret doing it, I really did love being blonde. But WOW was it ever high maintenance.

First of all — the upkeep. I know it is to be expected, but before I did it I really didn’t know how intense it would be. First of all, it’s expensive: be prepared to drop a LOT of money on constant hair appointments. Now that I’ve stopped dyeing my hair I’ve had so much of my budget free up for other things. It was worth it, but it was crazy expensive. And for those of us with super dark hair, the amount of time spent in the chair at hair appointments is a lot. I’m talking about 5+ hours each time. It really was so time consuming, especially since I had to go in for highlights every 6-8 weeks.

Me shortly after going blonde, September 2016

Second of all — the maintenance outside of dyeing appointments. I was never great with hair–growing up, I always had shorter hair so I couldn’t do much with it myself. Bleaching my hair was a HUGE learning curve. I use about 4-5 different products before blow drying my hair still to this day, and I absolutely cannot wash it without using a hair mask if I want to help keep it looking healthy. Furthermore, my hair was so fried I could almost never style it. Straightening and curling it, even just once in a while, took a noticeable toll on my hair. I’ve never been one for doing my hair every day, but if I had been it certainly would have been out of the question. I took supplements to help it grow in healthier, but ultimately I just had to be super careful with it 24/7.

All this being said though, I LOVED being blonde. Changing your hair is such a simple and fun way to make a major change in your life with little-to-no consequences. After all, it’s just hair–it can always grow back. If you dye it and hate it, cut it all off and regret it, and just about everything else in between, it’s all temporary. If you’re looking to make a change in your life, I’ve come to realize there’s a reason people going through a break up always start with drastically changing their hair — it’s a fresh start, but also not a permanent one.

My hair the day I dyed it back to brown, March 2019

While I loved being blonde, I also love my brown hair now. It really did feel like a fresh start, and I really loved seeing the reactions it got (particularly from my friends who had never known me with my natural hair, many of whom assumed I was a natural blonde at first). Upon dyeing it back, I immediately noticed a difference in how healthy and shiny it was. I still upkeep my fairly high maintenance hair routine, as most of my hair is still bleached underneath the brown dye, but overall it’s already a lot less overwhelming to take care of now. Plus, a huge bonus of dyeing it brown on top of the bleach is that my hair has slowly changed to a lighter shade in the months since I dyed it, keeping it fun and interesting. I love changing my hair, and it’s absolutely something I’ll keep doing. That’s the best part about hair, it’s all temporary! You can always change your mind. Even I don’t know what I’ll do with it next, but I know that the change will come at some point.

Some last few tips I have: hair should be an investment. It is such a large factor in how you present overall, and is 100% worth splurging on. If you can afford it, get your hair done at a hairdresser. At-home bleaching can work just fine if you know what you’re doing, but if you don’t and have the money to spend getting a professional to handle it, is it worth the risk? Also, and this may be my personal opinion, but hair care products are one of the few things where the cheaper options are often significantly less better than the expensive ones. Cheap clothes, with the right eye, can be paired for an expensive look. The right drugstore makeup will often be praised over high-end brands. There are cheap and DIY skin care options that work wonders with the right formula for your skin. But I really do find that with hair, you’re better off splurging a little. If you’re going to go blonde, purple or colour-treated shampoo is basically a must-have to keep from constant bleaching and upkeep. Hair masks are a good investment to help keep your hair healthy, and I would also suggest an oil or some related product to keep your hair nice and moisturized. I never struggled with dry hair until I bleached it out, but depending on the amount of bleaching it can really end up taking a toll on your strands. Furthermore, be ready for it to take a few tries if you have darker hair, as it can be so damaging to go all the way blonde at once. But all that being said, if you’re thinking about it, go for it! It really is fun to try switching things up, and while I love my natural hair, being blonde really was fun (but more fun than brunettes? Not so sure about that one).

My current hair, May 2019

Of course if you want any more advice, have any advice to give or just want to chat about it at all if you’re considering a switch feel free to hit me up!

Love,

Meredith