Thursday Favourites: February 27th

Hey guys!

As some of you remember, I covered my two all-time favourite mascaras in this segment back in November. At the time, I mentioned how I’d be sharing another post later on all about my go-to waterproof mascara — and as promised, here it is!

I love this mascara for a whole lot of reasons. Anyone who’s familiar with popular mascara brands will immediately recognize Too Faced’s Better Than Sex mascara — it ranks amongst Benefit’s They’re Real and Maybelline’s Great Lash as one of THE most iconic mascaras on the market. I haven’t purchased the original Better Than Sex formula in years, but I’ve kind of been considering giving it a try again. I used to use it all the time after hearing all the rave reviews, but I always found that it transferred around my eye area and often came out clumpy if I wasn’t careful. I’ve kind of been feeling the need to give it a second chance lately — I remember it having some flaws, but at one point it was a staple for me and I’m in the mood to give it another chance.

Anyway, back to the actual product of the week. I won’t lie, I stumbled across this product when I was searching for waterproof mascara in advance of a past vacation (which is just about the only time I buy my mascara waterproof). I only chose to buy it for two reasons — firstly, I recognized the brand and while the original Better Than Sex wasn’t like, my all-time fave mascara, I did love it at one point. Secondly, I totally fell for the packaging. Yes, I know, it’s not a reason to buy a product — but I just can’t help it! Look at those fake little water droplets. I’m obsessed.

Anyways, I do like this product for more than it’s cute packaging, I swear. What I love most about this product is the same thing I loved most about the original formula back in the day: the results are SO dramatic. As in, I ended up ditching my falsies during my trip dramatic (and if you know me, that’s COMPLETELY unheard of). Between my lash lift and this mascara, I was absolutely set. It just looked fantastic. My lashes have NEVER looked so good.

On top of that — this stuff really is waterproof. I’ve put it through a lot over the years — I’ve taken it on every single vacation I can remember since high school. Unless you like, literally take an hour long shower with it on, it barely smudges. I’m pretty sure I’ve swam with this stuff on. I love it.

If you’ve been looking for a great waterproof mascara, you can find this product online at Sephora! Hopefully for those of you with fun trips of your own planned soon, or who just need a little waterproofing in your everyday makeup, it’ll be just what you need.

And that’s all for today! Stay tuned this Sunday to read all about my current fave trends for a beach vacation (or even just summer, it’s almost just around the corner!). Otherwise, I hope you’re all having a fantastic week. We’re getting so close to the end of February — for those of you who’ve been setting monthly goals in 2020, I hope you’re close to achieving your February goals! If not, no worries — you can always take part of March to catch up (that’s my plan, at least!).

Much love,

Meredith

Spend A Week With Me In Puerto Vallarta, Mexico!

Sailing Tour by Vallarta Adventures

Hey guys!

So, as many of you already know, I’ve been spending this week taking a (very much needed) vacation in Puerto Vallarta. This last month has been a bit of a rough one for me — between having the flu, my term papers, my job and just keeping up with life its been a lot. However, not only was I lucky enough to have this getaway planned (and right after my final papers were due!), but from here on out my life should be at least a LITTLE less hectic, so cheers to that!

Puerto Vallarta is a special place to me since this was actually the place I went away on my first ever vacation! To be fair, I was too young to remember it — but this is my first time coming back ever since, so it’s pretty exciting to take it all in. I also have to say, Puerto Vallarta makes a great vacation spot — its easy to access from just about anywhere in North America (which I know for a fact since my family flew in from Toronto while I flew in from Vancouver, and none of us had long or difficult travels). As well, the weather here is STUNNING — like seriously, every single day that we’ve been here has been sunny and warm, and there’s almost never a cloud in the sky. It’s insanely perfect — maybe it’s just that all the vacations I’ve taken in the last few years have been to places with variable weather, but I’m pretty blown away by this “constant sun” and “no fear of cloudiness and rain” concept.

My Last Trip To Puerto Vallarta!

As well, Puerto Vallarta has just about everything anyone on your trip could be interested in. Not only does it have the beach, the pool, the sun and all the typical things you’d want out of a beach getaway, it has a vibrant town and plenty of adventurous activities in the nearby area. Since I was here with my family and my main goal was to just chill out a little, I didn’t really take part in anything TOO adventurous — but there’s all kinds of activities ranging from zip lining, to snorkelling, to parasailing, to hiking and more. Oh, and our hotel came equipped with the biggest spa I’ve ever seen, so there’s that too.

The View From Our Hotel Room

Overall, I have to say — I’m pretty in love with it here. (Bonus points since our hotel even came with a little house cat — meet Mitzy!). I know I always say this, but I never wanna leave (or at least, I could use more than one week). But enough of that — let’s get into all the details of my little vacay!

Meet Mitzy!

Our Accommodations

Our Room at the Marriott

For this trip, we stayed at the Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort and Spa. This little resort has it all — it’s near, but not quite in town. It’s smaller and a little quiet, which I personally loved. It has a lovely, large infinity pool, it’s own private stretch of beach, multiple restaurant and bar options and a large and fantastic spa — but more on that later.

Marriott Puerto Vallarta Beach

Some of my favourite aspects of this hotel are the lovely beach and poolside chairs, the amazing hibachi restaurant, the poolside food and drink service, and the amazing little stand that makes fancy cocktails served in real coconuts. (I mean, just look at this — how much cuter does it get?)

The rooms are large and pretty comfortable — not that we’ve spent much time in them when it’s so beautiful out. There’s a good range of food options, and a VERY good range of drink options. To top it all off, our hotel comes with it’s very own cat (Mitzy!) and the view from out balcony is beyond spectacular — so overall, I’d say this place is a winner.

View From Our Room Pt. 2

Things To Do

Go On A Sunset Sail
Sunset Sail by Vallarta Adventures

So I’ll just start off by saying that no matter where I’m travelling to in the world, just about my all time favourite activity is to spend a day on a boat. Seriously, my life goal is to be able to buy a boat one day. I’ve been on plenty of boats during my travels — such as Thailand, Vietnam, and Honolulu, just to name a few — however, this one really was the best one yet. We specifically chose to do a sunset sail via Vallarta Adventures, and while boating itself is great, let me tell you — boating at sunset is better. This particular boating adventure came with all the bells and whistles too — little snack trays, music, and an open bar (!!!). The staff were beyond lovely, too. Overall, I’d say this activity was a serious 11/10, and definitely my favourite part of this trip. If you’re ever in Puerto Vallarta, you’ll seriously want to check this ride out.

Sunset Sail by Vallarta Adventures
Have A Spa Day
Marriott Spa

So, obviously, this was VERY much needed after the week I’ve had. The Marriott Puerto Vallarta Spa is unlike any spa I’ve been to before, too — it really is a whole experience. Like first of all, it’s absolutely HUGE. When you get any services done, you get full access to all their amenities as well. So, while all I really signed up for was the 80-minute Swedish Massage, I ended up getting a LOT more. We spent our day before and after enjoying everything this spa had to offer, including: a jacuzzi, a hot and cold plunge pools, a foot bath, a sauna AND a steam room — and that’s not even an exhaustive list, just the things I tried out. Overall, it was an AMAZING experience, and probably one of the most extensive and amazing spa days I have ever had (thankfully, since I needed it so much!).

Marriott Spa
Hit The Town
Me in Town, Puerto Vallarta

The town of Puerto Vallarta is so vibrant and fun — if you’re spending your time at a resort, like me, you’ll still want to take a day and go explore. The beachside town is filled with countless restaurants, bars, and a wide array of shops, which will cover all your souvenir needs. There’s also a boardwalk that stretches on for miles and miles — allowing you to explore easily. Plus, the beaches by town are gorgeous, and feature plenty of beachside bars and restaurants — which is ALWAYS a good idea.

Puerto Vallarta Boardwalk
Try A Tequila Tasting
Tequila!

This is basically a must-try if you’re in Mexico — I mean, where else would be better to try something like this? It makes for a great little afternoon activity, and it’s totally a fun experience you really can’t get anywhere else. Our hotel offered free tastings, however, with how much tequila there is in this town, you probably could try this just about anywhere. Even if you’re really not a fan of tequila, they certainly have the best tequila in the world — so it’s definitely worth a shot (or two!).

Puerto Vallarta Pier

Places To Eat (And Drink!)

Mikado
Sushi at Mikado

Maybe I’m just a sucker for Hibachi places, but this was one of my favourite places we tried on our vacation. While this restaurant was a part of the Marriot we stayed at, you can totally make a reso here even if you aren’t a guest. The restaurant features two separate areas — one Sushi, one Hibachi. While we tried both out, and the sushi WAS amazing — the Hibachi restaurant was both SO delicious and SO fun. It totally gave me throwback vibes to every birthday I ever had at Benihana as a child, so really, there was nothing not to love.

Banana Tempura at Mikado
Si Señor
Si Señor on the Beach

This bar and restaurant wasn’t just beachside — it actually had tables to sit at ON the beach (which was about everything you could ever want). We really only stopped in here for drinks, but wow were they ever good. If you go here, you HAVE to try the Palomas — maybe I’m biased since I love a good Paloma any day, but they were absolutely to die for. The drinks, the view, the beach — UGH. This place is absolutely a must-try if you’re ever in the area.

The Blue Shrimp
Arriero Style Octopus at the Blue Shrimp

This may already be obvious from the name of the restaurant, but if you LOVE shrimp, this is the place for you. It was basically all that was on the menu, and it was glorious. The appetizers were delish but the shrimp dinners (where you basically just ended up choosing which sauce and style you wanted your shrimp in) were beyond amazing. The whole restaurant had a very strong Maritimes/Canadian East Coast seafood dinner restaurant vibe, so it was also pretty nostalgic for me since I haven’t been to the east coast in years. (Have I ever mentioned that I have a farm in Prince Edward Island? I guess that’s just a story for another day!).

Portuguese Shrimp at the Blue Shrimp

And that’s it for my little getaway! I’m heading home tomorrow afternoon (or today at the time that this posts), tragically enough — I’m really not ready to leave just yet. I mean, I guess I have to head back to reality at some point, but does it need to be so soon?

Sunset Sail Tour by Vallarta Adventures

All in all, this trip was AMAZING, though, so I can’t complain. Puerto Vallarta is a stunning city with a little something for everyone and endless blue, sunny skies. Like seriously — this place had better weather than anywhere I’ve been in a while, and I couldn’t be more thankful. (I love Vancouver, but sometimes you just need a break from the rain, you know?). Puerto Vallarta even reminded me a bit of home, with the mountain and beach combination it has going on!

I hope you guys all enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed sharing it with you (and experiencing it!). Hopefully it inspired you to plan a little vacay of your own sometime soon — if you end up heading to Puerto Vallarta or trying out anything that I did, let me know! I’d love to hear that I inspired some ideas for some of your future travels.

As well, stay tuned next week for another — slightly different — travel post! I’m going to be sharing with you guys all my fave beach vacay style trends for this spring and summer, so stay tuned! I’ve been collecting photos of all my favourite makeup and fashion trends I’ve tried over the last week and I can’t wait to share.

Have a great week everyone, and don’t forget to take some time to relax! Even with how overwhelmed I was last week, I didn’t truly realize how stressed I had been until a few days into my getaway — so take a minute for a quick breather, a Netflix binge or some self care. It never hurts!

Much love and adios,

Meredith

Ps. Enjoy some extra bonus photos below — I had too many for one post!

Thursday Favourites: February 6th

Hey y’all!

So, as many of you may remember, Glow Recipe was one of my top 5 brands I was dying to try in 2020. Well, if you’ve been keeping up with my latest Sephora haul, you’ll know that I’ve already gotten the chance — and needless to say, I’m obsessed. If you’re into skincare, you’ll already know it’s just about impossible to not find posts all over the internet absolutely raving about Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask. After seeing this product (and it’s numerous glowing reviews) all over the internet, I knew I just had to try it out for myself.

This uber-lightweight mask lists it’s benefits as “a skin-smoothing, radiance-boosting nightly sleeping mask with watermelon, hyaluronic acid, and AHAs that gently exfoliate and refine the look of pores” on Sephora’s website. Not only does it note it’s suitability for all skin types, it also notes that it is gentle enough to be used as an overnight mask, but also has the option to be used as a 10-minute wash-off mask for those with more sensitive skin.

I won’t lie, I was pretty nervous to test this mask out — not only were my expectations very high, but I do have sensitive skin so I was worried it would impact my complexion negatively. For this reason, I’ve only ever used it as a 10-minute mask — which so far, has worked perfectly for me. I was a little skeptical of the idea of an overnight mask starting out — I absolutely despise sleeping on my back, and I didn’t really see how any mask (save for those that are really just extreme moisturizers) could last all night and still require a wash-off in the morning. However, for those of you who’d be interested in using this mask overnight, fear not — it dries into a gentle layer of non-sticky, non-tightening solution, meaning you can sleep on your face and not worry about this mask rubbing off all over your pillowcase.

Now, it’s only been about a month since I purchased this mask, but it really does live up to the standards and rave reviews that drew me in to trying it in the first place. Not only does it do an amazing job of gently resurfacing (meaning you don’t have to worry about exfoliating as often!), it leaves my skin feeling bouncy, smooth, hydrating and fresh. Seriously, my skin was SO soft and glowy, even after the very first use — it honestly blew my mind a little.

Overall, I have to say, I adore this mask. So far, none of my concerns about it have come to fruition, but all the benefits have worked their wonders exactly as everyone says. The texture is so bouncy and lightweight, making it easy to apply and lovely to wear — and as an added bonus, the watermelon scent is to die for. My only remaining concern is that it DOES contain alcohol in it’s formulation; however, as the last ingredient on the list, I have to believe it’s only the smallest amount. So far, it’s had the opposite of a drying effect on my skin, so I don’t think that there’s enough alcohol in this product to cause any harm — but of course, I’ll keep you updated if I notice any changes!

Sound like the face mask your skin has been needing? Be sure to check out this product on Sephora’s website here!

Have you tried Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask, or anything else off their line? I’d love to hear any and all opinions you guys have — especially if you’ve tried their other products! I’ve been eyeing a couple other items their brand offers for a while now, so I’d love to hear some reviews before I take the leap and try them!

I hope you’re all having a fantastic week, and your first week of February is going well! Personally, I have a crazy busy week ahead — I have a term paper due and I’m preparing for my upcoming trip to Mexico (!!!) so it’s safe to say it’s going to be a long week. Buuuuut, when it’s over I do get to go away on vacation, so it’s all worth it in the end.

Much love,

Meredith