Thursday Favourites: August 20th

Hey friends!

Hope you’re all having an amazing week! Honestly, my motivation has been pretty low this week, but I’m trying to power through it and get things done so I can enjoy the last few weeks of summer. Can anyone else believe it’s already nearly September? I swear, the timeline of this year has been all over the place. New Years Eve feels so recent, but thinking back to March feels like another lifetime ago — it’s really been a rollercoaster of a year.

It’s hard to feel like I’ve really been taking advantage of summer since we’re all supposed to be spending so much time inside — I guess it’s just a part of 2020’s reality we’ll have to accept, but this summer really has flown by without me even noticing it. I feel as though summer has just begun, even though we’re kind of nearing the end of it, and I guess it’s because I haven’t really done much during these summer months this year. Especially when I was in university, summer was a time of freedom, friends and exploring. Even with summer classes, summer jobs, or both, I always spent all kinds of time with friends and outside, and I usually went on one mini-adventure every summer. This year, however, between my wisdom tooth surgeries, lockdowns, and job-hunting, summer has passed me by without me even noticing it.

With summer coming to a close, I haven’t really gotten the chance to sit out in the sun and enjoy it (and likely won’t, now that I have a fresh tattoo — I guess it’ll depend how long into September the weather stays sunny and warm). However, it’s still nice to sport a nice, healthy sun-kissed glow — even if you haven’t gotten a chance to leave your house much this year.

I’m certainly no stranger when it comes to self-tanners, and I’ve tried a few out over the years with very mixed results. Every single tanner I’ve tried has had some sort of flaw that made it difficult to use. Where one would be a dark coloured cream that would apply evenly, yet stain my sheets — another would apply clear and develop over a few hours — but always seemed to turn out streaky (and often smelt terrible). It was always a bit of an uphill battle constantly fighting against smelling of fake tanner or keeping my white sheets unstained.

However, I feel as though I’ve finally found the solution. I’d been hearing about these new face tanning drops for a while now — it felt like so many people I knew had tried them out. I’d been hearing good reviews, so I decided to give them a go for myself.

Something pretty cool about these Isle of Paradise and their tanning products is that they come in three shades — light, medium and dark. I opted for light, since I didn’t really know how they were going to look, but I’d definitely go for medium next time around. These drops are fantastic due to their versatility — they’re made to be added to moisturizer, so you can choose exactly how dark you want to go and simply add them to your other daily products. Something that’s always frustrated me about self-tanners is how it can be challenging and annoying to use them on your body AND moisturize, but using them individually isn’t as good a moisturizer as creams. However, since using this product just means adding it into my usual moisturizer, it’s been no problem using this product daily. As well, I’d absolutely NEVER put self-tanner on my face — my whole body cringes imagining what that would do to my skin. However, I’ve found this product is gentle enough that mixed in with my usual Clinique moisturizer, it doesn’t have any ill effects on my skin whatsoever.

Another thing I adore about this product is how it doesn’t rub off and stain everything you own, while it also doesn’t have any nasty fake-tan smell to it. I usually find most tanning products either have one or the other, but this one actually manages to avoid both. It’s nearly clear and doesn’t tan your skin through simply staining it darker (which is what I find often leads to it marking up your clothes and sheets) and doesn’t particularly have much of a smell to it, so it just ends up smelling like whatever product you’ve chosen to mix it with.

So far, I’m totally obsessed with this product. Between how totally customizable they are, paired with the fact they seem to have solved the problems that arise with most other self-tanners, they’re a huge win in my books. To top it all off, I’ve yet to have any issues with streaking or uneven tanning. This product looks SO natural, I almost was worried it wasn’t working at first since unlike so many other tanners I’ve tried, it didn’t streak or look orange. It really just looks like a light tan — as if you’ve just naturally gotten a bit of colour by going about your day-to-day life (minus the weird tan lines). If you wanted a more dramatic effect, you can always go for a darker shade or a higher volume of drops-to-moisturizer, as well. It’s completely up to you!

If this sounds like the self-tanner you’ve been needing, be sure to check out Isle of Paradise at Sephora!

I hope you all get the chance to enjoy the last few weeks of the summer to the fullest! I’m a little sad and bewildered by how fast this summer went, but at the same time, I won’t lie — I love Fall, and I’m starting to get pretty fired up for some cozy Autumn vibes. (Out of curiosity, what are your favourite seasons? Mine is summer, but the older I get the more I start to prefer Fall … I love the carefree summer feeling and the warm weather of summer. On the other hand, I hate when it gets too hot, and I love Fall clothes, holidays, cozy vibes, the changing leaves and basically everything else Fall has to offer (except the rain, of course). Anyways, I digress. Let me know in the comments below what your fave season is!).

Much love,

Meredith

Thursday Favourites: August 13th

Hey y’all!

Hope everyone’s been having a fantastic week so far! I’ve actually been pretty busy these last few weeks, between finishing up tasks and trying to squeeze in some socializing before fall (and a potential second wave comes). However, I do have some exciting news — not only have I finally finished decorating my room, but also I’ll be getting my first tattoo this weekend! Stay tuned the next two weekends, where I’ll be sharing posts detailing both more in depth for you all!

But that’s for later on. Today, I wanted to share a new favourite product of mine — NARS Laguna Paradise Found bronzer!

When it comes to makeup, my favourite part to complete is my cheeks. I’ve never had the chance to share any of my favourite cheek products with you all, as I haven’t used up/replaced any of my absolute staples since I began this blog. After all, I want to make sure I can take pictures of these products when they’re pretty and fresh for you guys! In the last year, though, I’ve been branching out and trying new products on my cheeks — and while my staples remain my favourites, I’ve tried out a couple new products that I absolutely adore and still think are worth sharing with you guys.

One of these products is NARS’s Laguna Bronzer — the one I have is their Paradise Found limited edition version with a golden overspray on top. I won’t lie — I actually bought this product on a complete whim. I already use two bronzers in my usual routine, which seemed like enough as is. But NARS is one of my favourite brands, especially for cheek products (one of their blushes is my holy grail everyday go-to) so when I saw this product, I just decided to go for it.

When I initially received and swatched this product, I honestly didn’t think I was gonna like it at first. The sheen of gold glitter coated on top seemed odd, and the swatch didn’t seem like it was all to pigmented. However, when it comes to makeup, there is more than matters about pigmentation — which is definitely true of this bronzer. Lower pigmentation can actually be a good thing for cheek products — as counterintuitive as that sounds. It can be really easy to go a little overboard with bronzer, blush and contour — so having a product that’s buildable rather than pigmented can actually make life a lot easier.

That’s exactly what I ended up loving most about this product — it’s so blendable and buildable that it almost looks as if it was airbrushed on when you apply it. Not only does that make it easy enough for anyone to use (even those who aren’t super familiar with using bronzer), but allows a truly flawless sunkissed look no matter what makeup look you’re going for. While it’s a powder, it has a rich, creamy texture that gives it a really seamless-looking effect when applied. Plus, it doesn’t take much to build this bronzer up to a good amount of product — it isn’t so light that it’s impossible to build. Ultimately, it’s lighter pigmentation just makes it easier to build and blend — rather than an ineffective or difficult product.

Unfortunately, this exact product was limited edition — but that only means you can’t get it with the golden glitter spray on top. If you’ve been needing a bronzer like this to add to your collection, no worries — NARS offers it in both matte and shimmer.

I hope everyone’s been doing well and staying healthy! These last few weeks have been kind of hectic but I feel like I may finally be on the verge of getting my life just a littttllleeee back on track (I don’t want to jinx it though!). I’m so excited for the next couple blog posts and the content I have planned out to share with you all, so be sure to stay tuned this and next Sunday to read all about everything I’ve been up to! I’ll be sharing how I decorated my bedroom with you all this weekend — I hope you’re all ready to see how it turned out!

Much love,

Meredith

Trends I’m Loving: Beach Vacay Edition!

Hey y’all!

So to start off, I have some super exciting news to share — I’m officially a FabFitFun affiliate! I don’t even have to tell you guys how excited I am about this, as I’m constantly referencing products and brands they introduced me to and raving about what I received in my boxes each season. If you want to get in on the fun, click here to head over to the FabFitFun site and get $10 off your first box when you use the code SPRINGLOVE!

(As a side note, if you’re curious about what type of products you may receive in a FabFitFun box, you can check out these sneak peek photos of the Spring Box, or my past Winter and Fall Unboxings to get a better idea!)

But for now, back to today’s content — for my 100th (!!!) blog post, I’m going to be sharing all my favourite fashion and makeup trends for a stylish and fun beach getaway. While I love how trendy and cool fall and winter fashion can be, summer is my favourite season and I just love how simple and easy-going summer style is. In my opinion, a great vacay wardrobe should incorporate both that care-free summer feeling, as well as taking every opportunity to try out as many new trends as possible (as tragically, vacation time is limited so you may as well take advantage). Vacation style, ideally, should therefore be cute, casual, and above all else — comfy. I mean, you’re taking a break right? So get comfortable and relax! (And if you don’t have any plans to take a vacation any time soon, feel free to keep reading — I’m going to be rocking these trends all summer too!).

A Cute Peach Lip

Peach tones have been the summery trend I’ve become obsessed with lately. I won’t lie, I’ve avoided peach the last few years — when it gets too bright and coral-hued I find it clashes with my skin tone and can look unflattering. However, I’ve been sticking to lighter, more neutral tones lately and I have to say — it is SO cute. Just look at this — is it not the perfect summer shade?

Of course, peach can be incorporated into any aspect of beachy summer looks — I got a peach manicure to match before I flew down to Puerto Vallarta as well! But a cute peach lip in my new fave. My favourite peachy lip looks are Kylie Cosmetic’s lip kit in Dirty Peach. (I love using Kylie Cosmetic’s Endless Summer Lipstick as a top coat to this to add some shine, but apparently they no longer carry the shade. However, if super-matte looks aren’t your thing, MAC Cosmetic’s Frost Lipstick in shade Skew would make a great topcoat as well!).

Some On-Trend Accessories

Okay, so cute hair accessories in 2020 isn’t really news. You can’t go more than a minute on Pinterest or Insta without seeing some super cute hair clip inspo. However, this was my first time really getting to test this style out personally. You can find me wearing chunky hair clips just about every day now — I’m pretty much addicted.

I brought endless hair accessories with me on my trip to test out, and I’ve discovered all of my faves. Obviously, oversized clips are all the rage right now — I got mine from H&M, and personally I think they’re adorable. If you’re looking to be perfectly on trend for your next getaway, I’d totally recommend checking out their accessory stock, as well as Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie for the cutest pre-tied bow scrunchies and scarves.

Glossy, Glittery Lips

You guys all know by now that I’m a gloss gal through and through — I just love the look! Now, I’ll be the first to admit super glossy looks don’t work out perfectly for every day on the beach (Is it super cute? Totally. But does your hair end up getting stuck in it every two minutes? Also yes.).

That being said, it still makes SUCH a cute beach look for the right occasion — especially for those uber-glossy, glittery looks that lipstick just can’t achieve. I found the perfect gloss for this getaway at Kylie Cosmetics in shade Oh You Fancy?. This gloss is just about as glittery as it gets, and it’s got a cute clear/peachy hue. It totally adds to a peach lip look and gives that perfect shine that helps add to your glowy beach look.

A Cute Bikini Collection

Every so often, I like to grab a few new bikinis to keep up with the latest trends. I find that bathing suit trends can be super distinct to each season and always changing, so it’s great to pick up a few so you look super on-trend before any beach vacation.

My personal faves this season are stylish snake prints and the return of bold neons — especially if you’re rocking a tan. As well, any bandeau or tank-style top is always just so cute. There’s endless stores that carry trendy bikinis, but some good ones to check out are ASOS, Free People and Revolve.

A Pinterest-Worthy Beach Hat

Looks that are cute AND practical? Count me in. I’ve really fallen in love with the wide-brim beach hat trend lately — for starters, simply because of how adorable it is. But Pinterest-famous vibes aside, this hat really does help protect both your eyes and sensitive face from the sun, which makes it a win in my books. While I bought this hat while away on my trip (it’s surprisingly hard to find vacation accessories in February) this style of hat is a staple that, in a few months, you’ll be able to find just about anywhere. While I may not have bought it from any commercial store, I’d recommend checking out H&M’s stock when the time comes — I really am falling in love with their accessories!

A Reliable Fake Tan

I don’t know about you all, but I’m not a fan of tanning. Only problem is — I love looking tan. You see my problem here? Maybe this is my personal opinion, but I find lying in direct sun fun for about half an hour before it starts getting really unpleasant. Plus there’s so many other downsides, such as the potential of uneven tanning, as well as sun damage — both on the cosmetic level, as well as damage to your skin’s health. While, yes, you could just load up on sunscreen, isn’t it easier to be in the sun/shade/indoors at your leisure and let your fake tanner do the heavy lifting? Who knows — maybe I’m just lazy or bitter because I burn super easily, but I consider this to be a vacation essential. (If you’re curious, my go-to is St. Tropez’s Classic Bronzing Lotion).

A Fresh Take On The Classic White Beach Dress

I should start this one off my ensuring you all I have nothing against white summery dresses, obviously. I love them! But you have all summer long to wear all the white dresses your heart desires, and only a short time away on vacation to really make a statement.

I’ve been obsessed with this cream-coloured romper ever since I bought it on sale at Aritzia at the end of last season, and I’ve been dying to show it off. I just love how it manages to be cute and classic while also switching up the whole usual white dress idea. If rompers aren’t really your thing, you could also give a two-piece set a try! Personally, I can’t wait for summer to roll around so I can go shopping for some cute matching shirt-and-short combos.

A Solid Waterproof Mascara

I could go super into detail here, or you could just check out my latest Thursday Favourite’s post about why Too Faced’s Better Than Sex Waterproof is the ultimate travel mascara. Either way, if you’re going to be swimming, sunning, or sweating — you’re going to need this.

That’s it for my little tropical fashion moment — but the good news is as of today we’re officially one step closer to spring! Happy March, everyone, and if you’re just so over this whole “winter” thing (and don’t have time to plan a getaway), just 21 more days until we’re all free of it. I don’t know about you guys, but I, for one, could not be more excited.

I hope you’re all having a restful and relaxing Sunday and are gearing up for a good week — personally, I’m taking a night off to relax as I have yet another crazy week ahead. If only vacation lasted forever, right?

Much love,

Meredith